Zaftig Female Vocalist Seeks Gig

Have you heard the news ? The tide has turned in Iraq! Fourteen young Americans died there Wednesday, when their Black Hawk helicopter went down in a fireball of molten steel, rotors akimbo — but remember former Vice President Spiro T. Agnew’s prescient admonishment, and let not “nattering nabobs of negativism” bring you down.

Hot on the heels of reports earlier this month from nominally liberal Brookings Institute scholars Michael O’Hanlon and Ken Pollack, who said the “surge” of additional U.S. troops committed to duty in Iraq since January has produced “striking improvement” and “dramatic change” in conditions “on the ground” in that much-abused land — yesterday, Democratic Senator Carl Levin and Republican Senator John Warner pronounced “the military aspects of President Bush’s new strategy in Iraq, as articulated by him on January 10, 2007, appear to have produced some credible and positive results.”

And so, in advance of General David Petraeus’ much-anticipated “report” to Congress on the effects of the “surge,” we are poised to receive the good news that the deaths of yesterday’s 14 U.S. servicemen and tomorrow’s uncounted Iraqi civilians will not have been in vain.

Never mind that Mr. Petraeus’ “report” is actually going to be written by the White House, or that the pronouncements of Mr. O’Hanlon, Mr. Pollack, Senators Levin and Warner, and all the other “official” spokespeople whose opinions are likely to be trotted out in the next several weeks are based upon limited and circumspect observances of the “conditions on the ground” in Iraq — the official judgment is that we are now winning the war on terrorism.

On to Syria. Or is it Iran?

Then, again, does anyone recall exactly what lies beneath our assumption of the duty to rid the world of evil? Surely, given the choice, most every one of us would align with the forces of good in this world, but who among us is actually enough of a superhero to presume the power to destroy evil?

We are on a fool’s errand, a hopeless task born of an unconsidered response to the shock and awe visited upon us by the lucky villains of 9/11.

And yet, in the waning months of a dying administration, even as its largest rats are jumping the ship, President Bush soldiers on, conflating his folly in Iraq with the import of World War II and suggesting that — to the extent his present war bears any resemblance at all to our failed exercise in Imperialism nearly half a century ago in Indochina — our biggest mistake was leaving Vietnam too soon.

Comes now Ari Fleischer, the Bush administration’s original font of mendacity, touting on FOX a new propaganda organization, Freedoms Watch, with a $15million budget committed to deceiving the public about our “success” in Iraq.

Yes, Virginia, the cavalry is coming over the hill and freedom is on the march. Peace is ready to break out all over the Middle East and the flowering of democracy there shall soon have crude oil back under $20 a barrel.

It’s good to be the king!


  1. “Open” Mike - August 24, 2007 @ 5:20 am


    Just to be as accurate as possible, last night’s news (I know we can’t exactly count on their accuracy) reported that even John Warner is now asking that at least some troops be brought home by Christmas. Perhaps he also said about “credible results” that wasn’t reported in the story I heard, probably trying to soft peddle the message that it is not going as planned.

    Our own Senator DiFi has gone one step further calling for the ouster of the Malaki government, as if that were our perogitive.

    In other news there’s talk that Karl Rove has been sidling up to Fred Thompson. Perfect, another actor.

    How do you know when a politician is lying?

    Their lips are moving.

  2. lonbud - August 24, 2007 @ 12:39 pm

    As usual, Glenn Greenwald has the unsavory details of what’s really going on with Iraq, the U.S., our policy there, and the people behind (and benefiting from) the whole stinking mess.

    Soldiers have always been the pawns of the politically powerful and our young people stuck today in Iraq are no different. Until the day when average Joes and Janes simply refuse to fight rich men’s wars, it will ever be thus.

    As for Fred Thompson, it’s illuminating that in his stint as counsel to senate Republicans during the Watergate hearings in 1973, he thought nothing of leaking sensitive and confidential information about the investigation to the Nixon White House because (in his words), “I wanted to be sure that the White House was fully aware of what was to be disclosed so that it could take appropriate action.”

    Presaging the same blind devotion with which Republicans have propped up the disastrous Bush administration these past seven years, Mr. Thompson admitted, “I was … looking for a way to justify my faith in the leader of my country and my party, a man who was undergoing a violent attack from the news media, which I thought had never given him a fair treatment in the past. I was looking for a reason to believe that Richard M. Nixon, President of the United States, was not a crook.”

    What you see is what you get, folks.

  3. Tam O’Tellico - August 24, 2007 @ 2:04 pm

    Move Over Rover

    Hard as it is to believe, there is still an irredeemable segment of the electorate which appreciates Karl Rove and would vote for George W. Bush again if they could. At least that’s the conclusion I draw from some of the responses to my recent piece celebrating the departure of Karl Rove from the inner circle at the White House. Here’s one:

    “Tom, I can see you know very little about Mr. Rove. Your accomplishments and integrity would pale in contrast. You are simply reflecting a “I hate Bush” syndrome. Many of us felt the same with Clinton and Carter, total failures.”

    My temptation was to reply with a take on late 20th Century philosopher Jimi Hendrix: “Move over, Rover, let Jimmy (or Barack or Hilary or just about anybody else) take over!” That might get a laugh, but it does little to address the serious issues. So this was my reply instead:

    I know far more about Mr. Rove and his “accomplishments” than I wish I did. His “accomplishments” scare the hell out of me – and not just because he got a few incompetent Republicans elected. Far worse was Rove’s desperate attempt to turn the entire government into a political machine – call it Boss Tweed on steroids – or as it appears to me Boss Hayseed.

    Whether you are a Republican, Democrat or Independent, whether you are a Conservative or a Liberal, you ought to be appalled and concerned that a political operative was given such free reign not only over policy, but over the workings of quasi-independent government entities like the CIA and DoJ. Rove attempted to compromise the political independence of these and almost every other government agency. Ironically, this is one time when we should all be thankful for the bureaucracy, because it was bureaucratic entrenchment in those agencies that made it possible to resist being co-opted utterly by Rove, Cheney and the NeoCons.

    And it wasn’t just government that Rove co-opted. The so-called Faith Based Imitative purported to engage religious groups in public service, but this FBI turned out to be little more than a way to solicit church member lists and fleece the flocks. To add insult to injury, administration insiders mocked Christian conservatives for drinking the Rove-laced Kool-aid. At least that’s the testimony of those who were the administration’s liaison to the Christian Right. One day, religious conservatives may finally figure out that those who have contempt for the separation of Church and State are not their friends.

    Speaking of contempt, this administration had plenty of it. Bush, Cheney, Rove and their staffs showed contempt for the Constitution, the Congress, the courts, and the common folk. These so-called “Compassionate Conservatives” were neither compassionate nor conservative.

    Don’t believe it? The deficit has soared while Katrina victims remain homeless two years later. Those are facts that even this administration can’t cover up. Nor have the cover-ups been that effective; another sign that Rove’s reputation as a political operative has far exceeded his ability to perform.

    Rove and his kind failed because in their contempt, they did not understand that there are decent, dedicated people in government who would not stand by while their work and their departments were callously eviscerated. One day, we will learn just how many people on both sides of the political divide resisted Rove’s onslaught, how many leaked the awful truth about this rogue administration. I say, thank God for their courage!

    That includes the courage of longtime Republican Conservatives like Paul O’Neill and George Tennant. Early on, O’Neill revealed the close-minded, even childish decision-making process of the President and his closest advisers. Certainly, Tennant has expressed his regrets about knuckling under and providing the administration with his “slam dunk” capitulation in spite of his own concerns about intelligence fabrications.

    Conservatives may dismiss Liberal commentators and pundits, but when life-long conservative voices like William F. Buckley, George Will and Pat Buchanan are howling about this administration’s ignorance, incompetence and wanton destruction of true Conservative principles, that is something true Conservatives must consider.

    I would hope that by now even the most die-hard true-believers would have had enough of this President’s ignorance and incompetence, and they would have rejected him and his policies – just as I came to understand that Bill Clinton did not demonstrate good judgment and thus did not deserve my vote a second time. He didn’t get it, by the way. I wish a few more Bush supporters had been similarly enlightened about the fool who would be king.

    I also wish they had the courage to stand up and tell their leaders that if Bill Clinton’s perjury in a civil matter warranted an impeachment proceeding, surely the dissembling, false testimony of Alberto Gonzales regarding the gutting of the DoJ and the trampling of the Fourth Amendment ought to qualify for that same remedy.

    Frankly, Bush should have saved Congress the trouble and the people the embarrassment long ago. And for my money, as soon as Bush fires Gonzales, impeachment proceedings should begin against both he and Cheney for their own lies and incompetence.

    ©2007 Tom Cordle

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