This is George Bush’s accountability moment. That’s why I’m here. The mainstream media aren’t holding him accountable. Neither is Congress. So I’m not leaving Crawford until he’s held accountable. - Cindy Sheehan

There are things worth fighting for. And there are even some worth dying for. But Iraq is not one of them. - James Moore

      
Marriage is love.

Friday, September 09, 2005

Speech writer

This has probably been around before, but I love it.
video

Thursday, September 08, 2005

The grim journey to find survivors


article and video from BBC News Americas
'New Orleans is still a city of countless human dramas and tragedy.
We brought our own boat and headed into residential neighbourhoods.
It is a grim journey, where bodies float uncollected in the water.'

The high-water vehicles he mentions, many of them, are in Iraq along with the National Guard.

Now how exactly does this work?

from Voice of America News via Raw Story:
'In another development here in Texas, the Mexican army is crossing the border to bring help to New Orleans and its stranded citizens. This is the first time Mexican military troops have crossed into Texas since 1846, during the war between the United States and Mexico that resulted in Mexico losing the vast area now known as the American southwest. The Mexican soldiers will not be armed and the 35 trucks in the convoy will be loaded with blankets, water, food and mobile kitchens.

Mexican President Vicente Fox brushed aside complaints from some opponents who said he should have sought Congressional approval for the operation, saying that no such approval is needed for a humanitarian mission.'

I don't understand. How is it that aide from American cities and organizations is turned away, but the Mexican ARMY can march right in on a humanitarian mission???

Funeral director deploys to hurricane region

via Democratic Underground
"DMort is telling us to expect up to 40,000 bodies," Dan Buckner said, quoting officials with the Disaster Mortuary Operational Response Team, a volunteer arm of Homeland Security.

The media must do whatever it takes to show recovery of bodies. If they don't keep the horror of this alive for the sensitivity-numbed, sound-byte generation, pressure to hold BushCo to account will quickly dissolve.

Crouching tiger, hidden donkey


from Reuters NetAlert
"After inspection, the owner confessed that the so-called tiger meat was donkey meat that had been dressed with tiger urine to give the dish a 'special' flavour."

Send that chef to Laura Bush.

Wednesday, September 07, 2005

Rose Garden, Tulsa OK



I was just telling a friend about blogs, and then visited my husband's for the first time in a while. He is a really good photographer, and shares some of his images at his site.

The Tulsa Rose garden gallery is really worth a visit. This amazing place is just a short walk from the house, and we enjoy it during all seasons of the year. If you are ever near Tulsa, please treat yourself to a stroll here.


Go Hillary

"US Senator Hillary Clinton fueled the political debate over Hurricane Katrina, insisting on an independent inquiry into the federal response and sharply rejecting President George W. Bush's bid to lead the probe himself.

"I don't think the government should be investigating itself," Clinton told CNN as the polemics intensified over last week's storm, which left New Orleans in chaos and thousands feared dead on the US Gulf Coast.

"I don't think either the president or the Congress can conduct the kind of objective, independent investigation that we need," the New York Democrat and former first lady said on CBS television."

Yahoo News via Raw Story


"For God's sake, are you blind?" Media finally opens its eyes.

'"For God's sake, are you blind?," a woman shouts at the head of the federal emergency management agency (FEMA), Michael Brown. "You're patting each other on the back, while people here are dying." The woman is not a victim of Hurricane Katrina. She is a reporter with US television network MSNBC who is so affected by the misery she has witnessed she can hold back no longer. '

News24,com via DU

The Larger Shame

Nicholas Kristof's op ed in the New York Times via my brother. Thanks, Johnny.

"It's not just that funds may have gone to Iraq rather than to the levees in New Orleans; it's also that money went to tax cuts for the wealthiest rather than vaccinations for children."

The number of poor has risen 17% under Bush's compassionate conservatism. Infant mortality has risen for the first time since 1958. Nearly 30% of children in this country were without health insurance for some period of time during the last year. Our immunization rate for measles and polio is lower than that of 80 other countries. This in a country in which the ruling class is fighting like starving dogs over a bone to permanently repeal the f&$king estate tax.

This is criminal. And the Democratic leadership is immoral not to rise up in disgust and demand, not just of Congress and the President, but all of America that we repeal Bush's insane tax cuts and start to address the issues of poverty. Universal health care and a good public education system should not be debatable, they should be the minimum that we as a nation will tolerate.

U.S. agency blocks photos of New Orleans dead

They waited until much to late to send help, but are quick to cover up their carnage. This from Reuters AlertNet
And overseeing their own investigation? I hate these bastards.

Tuesday, September 06, 2005

Slideshow

joe max and driftglass
Us and Them
Music by Pink Floyd

I Know This Little Boy In New Orleans


by Bob Geiger, the Yellow Dog Democrat

"I know the little boy in this picture.

No, I don't know him personally. But he is roughly the same age as my small son. This boy is beautiful, innocent, vulnerable and probably very scared in this photo.

I know this young boy.

He doesn't like vegetables. He prefers macaroni and cheese, chicken nuggets and hot dogs. He watches too much television and loves SpongeBob SquarePants and Yu-Gi-Oh. He used to like Pokemon, but thinks it's lame now.

He tries hard to not cry when he scrapes his knee or bumps his head. But sometimes he does and he feels better when his Mommy holds him. He likes to hug his grandparents and be spoiled when he visits them. He gets to stay up later at their house. He likes that.

He hates for people to know it, but he is afraid of the dark and has a nightlight in his room. He sleeps with a stuffed dog, but doesn't want his friends to know.

He can't really match his clothing yet, and has to be nagged to clean his room and do his chores. But he's filled with pride when he accomplishes his work. He knows his parents aren't rich, but his bed is warm at night and his parents make sure he always has good meals.

He doesn't like girls yet, even though his parents tell him he someday will.

He knows a big storm came, with lots of water. And he hates where he is now.

He's embarrassed in public bathrooms and doesn't understand why he is now living in such a bad place. He's glad he doesn't wear diapers any longer so his parents don't have to worry about that. He wants to go home.

He loves Mountain Dew and Gatorade but has been so thirsty that water sounds better than anything he's ever had to drink.

He knows his bedroom, with his stuffed animals and Spiderman poster, is gone. It's under water now, which scares him even more. He hasn't yet learned to swim.

He wonders why his mommy is crying so much and why his daddy is so angry. He's worried because he knows his grandmother has been lost. He misses her.

He doesn't understand why it took so long for anyone to come and help him and why his family had to stay so long in the scary place where the Saints play football.

He doesn't like the dark or the heat or loud noises or yelling – and for days and days in his young life that is all he has heard.

I don't know this young man's name. But I know him. He's just like my little boy.

And I know he deserved better. I know he is too young to have been that scared, that thirsty, that hungry, that hot and that confused.

I know he deserved to be rescued as quickly as possible. I hope he was and is now in a place where he is in darkness only because it's time to be tucked in and go to sleep.

And I hope when this sweet little boy, along with my own child, are grown men, they will live in an America where this will never be allowed to happen again."

But in order for that to happen we will have to forcibly remove the Bush administration from its stranglehold position and reinstate government of and for the people, not the privileged.

Looters



Seen at Blue Meme

Monday, September 05, 2005

My right hand is numb, but I haven't gone blind...

...yet.


I have just spent a secluded 3 days with the most powerful vibrator known to womankind.

Orbital sander. Good lord, think of the possibilities!

Soon I am going to be slathering the polyurethane..............

Seriously, I can hardly type!

Sunday, September 04, 2005

There is a special level in Hell reserved for Grover Norquist.


The Democrats should use this as a rallying cry.

' Senate Minority Leader Harry M. Reid (Nev.) implored Republicans late last week to drop plans to take up permanent repeal of the estate tax soon after Congress returns to work. "With thousands presumed dead after Hurricane Katrina and families uprooted all along the Gulf Coast, giving tax breaks to millionaires should be the last thing on the Senate's agenda," Reid said.'

With Katrina shining a flashlight under his slimy rock:

"I don't think Republicans will be fooled into taking this necessary spending and using it to oppose pro-growth tax cuts," said Grover G. Norquist of Americans for Tax Reform, who castigated Reid for "using this tragedy and those deaths for his own political desires."

Jesus, surely we can't let them get away with that.

Jonathan Weisman, WaPo via BuzzFlash

Graphic courtesy of Skippy

Falluja Floods the Superdome

Frank Rich, NYT

"But a president who flew from Crawford to Washington in a heartbeat to intervene in the medical case of a single patient, Terri Schiavo, has no business lecturing anyone about playing politics with tragedy. Eventually we're going to have to examine the administration's behavior before, during and after this storm as closely as its history before, during and after 9/11. We're going to have to ask if troops and matériel of all kinds could have arrived faster without the drain of national resources into a quagmire. We're going to have to ask why it took almost two days of people being without food, shelter and water for Mr. Bush to get back to Washington."

Chief Justice Rehnquist Dies

We are so f&*ked now.

Saturday, September 03, 2005

Comforting

Mr. Chertoff said Saturday: "Not an hour goes by that we do not spend a lot of time thinking about the people who are actively suffering. The United States, as the president has said, is going to move heaven and earth to rescue, feed, shelter" victims of the storm.

Just like Bush, who thinks about Iraq every single day.

Bush faked levee repair for photo op yesterday

by John in DC - 9/03/2005 06:29:00 PM Americablog

"From a press release LA Senator Mary Landrieu sent out today:
But perhaps the greatest disappointment stands at the breached 17th Street levee. Touring this critical site yesterday with the President, I saw what I believed to be a real and significant effort to get a handle on a major cause of this catastrophe. Flying over this critical spot again this morning, less than 24 hours later, it became apparent that yesterday we witnessed a hastily prepared stage set for a Presidential photo opportunity; and the desperately needed resources we saw were this morning reduced to a single, lonely piece of equipment. The good and decent people of southeast Louisiana and the Gulf Coast - black and white, rich and poor, young annd old - deserve far better from their national governmeent."

If this is true, I hope the MSM highly publicizes it. They have shown an admirable amount of backbone during this crisis.

Too sad to comment about the pets and other animals



Please, right now, while you are perhaps wondering what you can do to help with this disaster, devise a plan that can save the lives of your entire family later on. Think where you will go and where you can take your animals if you have to evacuate (the 10,000 who entered the Superdome were not allowed to take animals inside with them). Learn your options, plan your escape route. And do not put off the task of setting aside enough dry food, bottled water, and medicine for at least a week for each of the humans, dogs, cats, guinea pigs, birds, and any other family members. For the nonhumans, put aside a familiar piece of bedding, a sturdy carrier, a harness, a leash, and whatever else will provide security in case you must all flee. And make a list. If you know there are caged, chained, or otherwise confined animals in your neighborhood, look out for them if that day ever comes. You may be the only one who remembers to save them. Huffington Post

Rapes, killings hit Katrina refugees in New Orleans

New Orleans Convention Center: The Louisiana National Guard soldier said, "We are doing the best we can with the resources we have, but almost all of our guys are in Iraq."

We can lay this at Bush's feet.

Reuters

Go Vols! UT 17 - UAB 10


Gerald Riggs, Jr. (now #21)

Rick Clausen (#16)

Jason Allen (#18)

Eric Holdeman: Bush team's dismantling of FEMA is a disaster

"Apparently homeland security now consists almost entirely of protection against terrorist acts. How else to explain why the Federal Emergency Management Agency will no longer be responsible for disaster preparedness? Given our country's long record of natural disasters, how much sense does this make? What follows is an obituary for what was once considered the pre-eminent example of a federal agency doing good for the American public in times of trouble, such as the present."

More at The Capital Times via my brother. Thanks, Johnny!

Darfur on the Mississippi: The Republican Armageddon

by Fatherflot (thanks, Mom)

Thu Sep 1st, 2005 at 06:26:33 PDT
As I watch the situation in New Orleans and the surrounding area descend
into hell on earth, I can't help but note how utterly and completely this
disaster refutes the policies and vision of society that has ruled the
Republican party and the US for the past decade.

This is Darfur and the Dustbowl and the San Francisco Fire and the storming
of the Bastille all rolled into one, and it will force the citizens of the
US to wake up to the insanity of GOP policies.

The role of government: The GOP gospel of low-taxes, low services, let the
rich hide behind gated communities maintained by private security, etc. is
blown to bits.

The concerns over the environment: Overdevelopment, loss of wetlands,
global warming, etc. These issues can NEVER be allowed to be laughed at
again.

Crumbling infrastructure. The role of levees, and bridges and highways and
other things can never be allowed to become invisible again.

The Iraq disaster. The national guard used as a private army for a foreign
boondoggle. They aren't here to do what they were created to do---nor is
much of their equipment.

Disenfranchisement of poor people, especially poor black people. The anger
we are hearing from the victims of this disaster is already completely
POLITICAL. They've been shut out of the process and they know this had led
directly to their being sacrificed to the disaster.

The petrochemical industry. Both our dependence on it and its danger to our
health. Every time Bill O'Reilly goes after "big oil" we need to scream
about who "big oil" supported for President and Congress, where their
lobbying money goes and what concrete policies have resulted.

US healthcare system. Overwhelmed, underfunded, unable to cope.

Banking, insurance, etc. The unfairness of the new bankruptcy legislation
will be revealed when tens of thousands of people will default on car loans,
mortgages, etc.

Gun Control. The widespread and easy availabiliy of guns from Walmart and
sporting goods stores now has to be seen as a threat to national security.
They had to stop the evacuation because shots are being fired at Army
helicopters, for christ's sake!

Capital over people. Officials on the ground have now officially chosen
property over people by taking police off search-and-resuce missions to go
after looters.

The utter joke that is "Homeland Security". All that money, all that
propaganda, all the efforts to curtail our civil liberties in the name of
homeland security and THIS is how the system responds to an "attack" on a
major American city??

And perhaps most of all: BUSH HIMSELF. His cowardice, laziness, utter,
pathological lack of empathy. His refusal to face reality. His golfing and
playing guitar and comparing himself to Roosevelt during a photo-op as the
disaster unfolded. His canned, peeved-sounding responses. His utter lack of
interest in a situation that is not part of the hustle.

More lies exposed

from Editor and Publisher

”As late as Sept. 30 last year, in an election debate, Bush stuck to his views. ‘Saddam Hussein had no intention of disarming,’ Bush maintained.

”A week before, Duelfer had conveyed his 1,000-page final report to the CIA, saying Saddam had disarmed 13 years earlier.”

This criminal must be impeached. Keep working on your representatives to support HR 375.

Friday, September 02, 2005

And they probably still won't do it....

A TPM Reader checks in ...

Josh,
I have a question that no one has raised so far. Wouldn’t part of any homeland security preparation be the handling of refugees? Virtually any serious terrorist attack (explosion, nuclear, biological) would entail a large number of displaced persons. Wasn’t anything done along these lines? I would have thought we would have pre-positioned refugee resources (tents, MRE's, water purification, generators, emergency medical care) near major population centers in the event of mass exodus. Am I crazy?

Riveting



Saw this incredible thing at Skippy
These people are mad dogs.

Good Night, New Orleans

by Jim Lampley via Huffington Post

"It should have been treated with more care. Its circumstances should have occasioned more urgency. It was a place worth making a stand for. You can't recreate that kind of history and tradition and connectedness to our cultural origins. And the people who let it go so casually will answer for their sins. When the saints go marching in, they'll be watching from the sidewalk, not strutting their stuff amid the trombones. They didn't understand the music, but the universe will.

Good night, New Orleans, and God bless you. Rest assured the cretins who cavalierly let you go will be forgotten long before your memory begins to fade."

Thursday, September 01, 2005

This Is Your Accountability Moment, Mr. Bush

"It’s moments like this when you need a party in power that actually believes in the affirmative power of government to help its citizens, rather than the party that sees government’s role as protecting the property of the well-off from the predations of the underclass. It’s when the true ugly soul of American conservatism is borne out for what it is: a rationalization of selfishness and the hysterical denial of community. America is about to see what happens when the government is staffed by people appointed to their jobs precisely for their disdain for the whole notion of policy in the public interest. It’s won’t be pretty."

Rob Salkowitz via Shakespeare's Sister

Not an exact quote

Jamie McIntyre just said on Aaron Brown's show that the Pentagon, I believe, questioned why reporters were more sympathetic with the New Orleans hurricane victims than with the difficulties the government was facing in dealing with the disaster. The Republican slime machine will be spewing soon.

BushCo's actions have consequences

From the Washington Monthly via Huffington Post: 'CHRONOLOGY....Here's a timeline that outlines the fate of both FEMA and flood control projects in New Orleans under the Bush administration. Read it and weep:

2001-Budget Director Mitch Daniels announces the Bush administration's goal of privatizing much of FEMA's work. In May, Allbaugh confirms that FEMA will be downsized: "Many are concerned that federal disaster assistance may have evolved into both an oversized entitlement program...." he said. "Expectations of when the federal government should be involved and the degree of involvement may have ballooned beyond what is an appropriate level." '

BushCo sure doesn't like 'entitlements'. Gods forbid that the unwashed heathen should be 'entitled' to inappropriate levels of Social Security or SSI, Medicaid, Veterans benefits, Food Stamps or State Children’s Health Insurance. Oh, and emergency management......

Culture of judgement and punishment.

Jack Cafferty

video from Crooks and Liars. Jack doesn't pull any punches here.

Wish we had Clinton back

Georgie's father is making excuses for him, while Bill Clinton is frankly assessing the situation. Clinton is a leader. I wish he was at the helm of this ship.

Freedom on the march in New Orleans

Mr. Blue Meme

'"We are seeing the last throes of insurgent wetness throughout the Gulf Coast area," Cheney maintained.

Finally, President Bush annouced that although the war for terra firma was "hard work," "progress was being made," and said that the lessons of 9/11 would not be forgotten. "We will send all 12 National Guardsmen remaining in Louisiana and Mississipi to Iraq immediately so that we can protect all freedom-loving people against this kind of assault," said the President.'

And pretty soon they will find a way to blame it all on a liberal.

More on cats in sinks

I forgot to tell you why Tigris and Euphrates were relegated to the yard. After our son came home from college with his cat, Jeff, Ti and Euphie started peeing

here



and here





Have you ever smelled cat pee when you do

this?

New Orleans isn''t the only thing that is in over its head....

'Sacrifices may be necessary to make sure that all these things happen in an orderly, efficient way. But this administration has never been one to counsel sacrifice. And nothing about the president's demeanor yesterday - which seemed casual to the point of carelessness - suggested that he understood the depth of the current crisis.' New York Times

Jesus, I think he is simply afraid of being asked, "Where the hell is our National Guard when it is so desperately needed?"

Jellyfish in a blast furnace

Slate : 'From December 1941 to August 1945—the attack on Pearl Harbor until the declaration of Allied victory—the United States manufactured 88,430 tanks and 274,941 combat aircraft. Yet in the two years after the invasion of Iraq, much less the four years since the attack on the World Trade Center, the Bush administration has not built enough armor platings to protect our soldiers' jeeps from roadside bombs.

To fund World War II, the United States drastically expanded and raised taxes. (At the start of the war, just 4 million Americans had to pay income tax; by its end, 43 million did.) Beyond that, 85 million Americans—half the population at the time—answered the call to buy War Bonds, $185 billion worth. Food was rationed, scrap metal was donated, the entire country was on a war footing. By contrast, President Bush has asked the citizenry for no sacrifice, no campaigns of national purpose, to fight or fund the wars in Iraq or Afghanistan. In fact, he has proudly cut taxes, heaving the hundreds of billions of dollars in war costs on top of the already swelling national debt.'

This is the antithesis of leadership.