Saturday, July 28, 2007
Maybe instead of a big tent, the Repbulicans just have a huge closet.
Friday, July 27, 2007
Friendly fire isn't.
-- Murphy's Laws of Combat
I'm using the term "fragged" here, not in it's original context, i.e. referring to death by friendly fire through the use of a fragmentary hand grenade. Since the Vietnam War, the term fragged has taken on a broader meaning: death by friendly fire that was intended to cause death by friendly fire.
There's some disturbing news going around the internets today. firedoglake links to an AP story that quotes medical examiners saying the three M-16 rounds that hit Pat Tillman's head and killed him were in too tight a pattern to have been fired from the distance and under the conditions reported in the Army's investigation of the fatal friendly fire incident in Afghanistan.
This comes on the same day of the announcement that the Secretary of the Army will likely recommend demotion for the lieutenant general (3 stars) who commanded the army special operations command at the time of Tillman's death.
Very thorough analysis of the case and the multiple cover-ups at From the Wilderness.
UPDATE -- Friday morning: I've never been much for conspiracy theories. But I've learned that with the Bush administration, things that seem too bizarre to be true probably are anyway.
The quick gist of this one is that Tillman was against what he saw as an illegal war in Iraq, spoke out about this to his fellow special operators (Rangers, SEALs, Special Forces), was planning to return to the Cardinals to resume his football career as soon as his enlistment was up, and might very well have spoken out against the war on every national sports show on TV.
That was something the Bush administration simply could not allow thier War on Terra poster boy to do.
Thursday, July 26, 2007
Atrios linked to a hot rumor that a prominent politician from Ohio's congressional delegation has turned up on the DC Madame's call list.
One anonymous commenter, responding to the suggestion that the unnamed Ohio politician might be Mean Jean Schmidt wrote of the "HOT" rumor:
If you mean "hot" like the vomit that goes up your nose when your puke up a bad burrito, yeah.Well, I feel much better now.
Wednesday, July 25, 2007
Tuesday, July 24, 2007
You'll hear more when we do.
And Bush says al-Qaeda al-Qaeda al-Qaeda, because it's all he's got, and after 6 years he can pronounce it without drooling all over himself.
I wish I had some profound, witty remark, about this being just another day in the Cheney administration, but why bother anymore. Except to give Falafel Bill something to rant about.
Oh, and Lindsay Lohan is headed back to rehab. I really hope she gets it this time.
Oops! Looks like she was arrested for DUI, then they found a little coke in her pocket. It would be more accurate to say that she plans to enter rehab. Bet she does more time than Scooter did.
But I'd like to go on record as having never made the trains run on time.
I did hop a few frieghts during my recklass youth, but that's a whole other story.
With President Bush’s popularity scraping bottom in opinion polls, with U.S. casualties rising in Iraq in a force surge that has stretched soldier tours to 15 months, the Bush administration July 10 said it “strongly opposes” key military pay and benefit gains tossed into their fiscal 2008 defense bill.I don't think of myself as a hateful person, but each day I find more reasons for an exception to that policy.
Initiatives the administration “strongly opposes” include:
-- A military pay raise for next January of 3.5 percent versus 3 percent endorsed by the White House.
-- Lowering the age-60 start of reserve retirement annuities for reserve component members by the length of their future mobilizations.
-- Expanding eligibility for Combat-Related Special Compensation to service members forced by combat disabilities to retire short of 20 years.
-- Directing pharmaceutical manufacturers to provide the Department of Defense with same price discounts for TRICARE retail pharmacy network that are provided already on medicines dispensed from base pharmacies.
The administration also grumbled that the Senate intends to block for another year TRICARE fee increases for under-65 retirees and dependents.
Military officials here have been careful not to guarantee success, and recognized they may need to revise the plan if some assumptions were not met.And then we're back to digging through the shit to find that elusive pony again.
Deja Moo: The feeling that you've heard this bull before.
Monday, July 23, 2007|
Markos offers a pony to anyone who can find that explosive blog post.
Maguire described crimes "far worse" than those of Arthur Andersen, the accounting giant that collapsed in the wake of the Enron scandal. Among those in his sights: executives from a subsidiary of Berkshire Hathaway, the investment empire overseen by billionaire Warren Buffett.Meanwhile, Gonzo assures us that "reinforcing public confidence" is one of his top priorities.
In May 2006, he felt strongly enough about his case that he prepared a draft indictment accusing executives from a Virginia insurer, Reciprocal of America, of concocting a series of secret deals to hide its losses from regulators. Although he didn't name anyone from Berkshire Hathaway's subsidiary, he described the company as a participant in the scheme.
But Maguire never brought those charges.
Months after preparing the draft, he was removed as the lead prosecutor on the case and reassigned.
His replacement, a prosecutor who hadn't been involved in the case until then, soon announced that the Berkshire Hathaway subsidiary, General Reinsurance, wouldn't be indicted. By April of this year, the entire investigation, which the Justice Department once hailed as one of the largest insurance-fraud cases in the history of Virginia, had fizzled.
Former employees and policyholders of the Richmond-based insurer were astounded. Why had the Justice Department spent upward of $2 million to investigate the case only to decline to prosecute? Maguire and his team of investigators had secured two related guilty pleas, interviewed dozens of witnesses and gathered 7,000 boxes of documents.
Would someone please let him in on the secret that there has to actually be some "public confidence" before it can be "reinforced."
But his idea that censure is the way to address an administration that has become a criminal syndicate is just dumber than dogshit.
The only way to deal with these corrupt bastards to to bring charges of criminal wrong-doing that lead to impeachment, conviction, and prison.
Anything short of that will have absolutely no effect. They'll just ignore it and continue on their merry way.
h/t Josh Marshall.
Still looking for that elusive bottom, I guess.
In June, Colonel Abraham became the first military insider to criticize publicly the Guantánamo hearings, which determine whether detainees should be held indefinitely as enemy combatants. Just days after detainees’ lawyers submitted an affidavit containing his criticisms, the United States Supreme Court reversed itself and agreed to hear an appeal arguing that the hearings are unjust and that detainees have a right to contest their detentions in federal court.Not mentioned in the article is the fact that the DOD leadership really hates it when one of their fucking Reservists is smarter than they are.
Some lawyers say Colonel Abraham’s account — of a hearing procedure that he described as deeply flawed and largely a tool for commanders to rubber-stamp decisions they had already made — may have played an important role in the justices’ highly unusual reversal. That decision once again brought the administration face to face with the vexing legal, political and diplomatic questions about the fate of Guantánamo and the roughly 360 men still held there.
“Nobody stood up and said the emperor’s wearing no clothes,” Colonel Abraham said in an interview. “The prevailing attitude was, ‘If they’re in Guantánamo, they’re there for a reason.’ ”
The curtain on the hearings had been pulled back a bit previously, when the Pentagon, under pressure, released some transcripts. But by stepping forward, Colonel Abraham gave the Supreme Court and the public a look from an insider at a process that remains heavily shielded.
[ . . . ]
Pentagon officials say his account indicates that he misunderstood the purpose of the hearings, known as combatant status review tribunals or C.S.R.T.’s, which the officials say “afford greater protections for wartime detainees than any nation has ever provided.”
TPMmuckraker has more.
Apparently, all the Iraqis who are working for the Americans in Iraq need American visas, otherwise they will be part of the exodus of Iraqis fleeing the country.
And they need those visas, just in case, you know, they need to flee the country.
It's too early on Monday morning to wrap my brain around this one.
Apparently the Cheney administration promised to process 7,000 of those visas by September, but have only managed to crank out 133 so far. Everything is so efficient with the adults in charge.