July 9, 2004
Turns out the payroll records for National Guard service have been destroyed. Not all of them. Just the months on George W. Bush's record which are in dispute.
Oh, and this happened in 1997. But no one's ever mentioned it before. Including Bush's campaign. Who claimed they released all his records. A year ago.
That's a neat trick, isn't it.
July 8, 2004
Whatever button, his finger wasn't on it
Is anyone else a little upset about the idea that the most major source of nuclear material located in Iraq was a stockpile monitored by the UN and left open to looters following the U.S. invasion of the country?
U.S. Energy Secretary Spencer Abraham on Tuesday disclosed the secret airlift from Iraq as "a major achievement" in an attempt to "keep potentially dangerous nuclear material out of the hands of terrorists."The only problem, you see, being that the UN had previously been keeping the dangerous nuclear material out of the hands of terrorists... until the U.S. invaded.
You see, this is nuclear material that was accounted for- declared via the 1991 inspections policy and monitored by the IAEA. This wasn't a "discovery of hidden weapons." This was a "discovery of previously secured nuclear material that, after sending in troops, we left open for terrorists to come in, take, and pack into dirty bombs. Booyah!"
There are likely a handful of right-wingers who are going to read into this story and state that we've discovered nuclear WMDs in Iraq. For reference, these people can be referred to as "idiots."
The irony is that if any of this (and thank god it didn't) actually did get into terrorist hands, then we'd have had more evidence of the U.S. Army giving WMDs to terrorists than we currently have of Saddam Hussein doing so. Which kinda makes you want to curl up under your desk with a bottle of Jack Daniels and cry, don't it?
(via Kevin Drum)
Bring on Guantanamo
Okay, not really. But when I watch Ken Lay finally take the perp walk, at least part of me sympathizes with what Michael Moore said a few years ago when the Enron scandal first broke: "these are the only guys that have made me question my opposition to the death penalty."
We talk about murderers all the time. We shine the spotlight on celebrities who kills their spouse, or commit other horrible acts. And don't get me wrong, they are horrible. Murderers deserve to rot in prison for the rest of their lives.
Ken Lay isn't a murderer. But he took lives. He took dozens of them. Tormented them. Broke them. Utterly ruined them.
Ken Lay destroyed people. For money.
We're 900 dead soldiers, and we didn't approve of this campaign stunt at all
Bush campaign to Pakistan: please schedule capturing bin Laden to make it look good for us.
A third source, an official who works under ISI's director, Lieutenant General Ehsan ul-Haq, informed tnr that the Pakistanis "have been told at every level that apprehension or killing of HVTs before [the] election is [an] absolute must." What's more, this source claims that Bush administration officials have told their Pakistani counterparts they have a date in mind for announcing this achievement: "The last ten days of July deadline has been given repeatedly by visitors to Islamabad and during [ul-Haq's] meetings in Washington." Says McCormack: "I'm aware of no such comment." But according to this ISI official, a White House aide told ul-Haq last spring that "it would be best if the arrest or killing of [any] HVT were announced on twenty-six, twenty-seven, or twenty-eight July"--the first three days of the Democratic National Convention in Boston.Not like people are dying over this or anything.
Sadly, No! links to a European report that possibly over 100 children have been detained, and in some cases tortured, in Iraqi prisons. By Americans.
July 7, 2004
Oh, right. Him.
Remember, voters: you can't trust a party that embraces a trial lawyer.
Via Wonkette, a moment from Aaron Brown on CNN:
AARON BROWN, HOST: Good evening again, everyone. We begin tonight with a confession: I dated John Edwards' wife. Well, not dated like plural, dated like singular. We went out to dinner. Well, we didn't actually go out to dinner. We went to a dinner, just the two of us -- and 2,000 other people.Guh?
Agenda on the agenda
The Senate is going to vote on the Hate Amendment next week.
As I've discussed previously, this is a zero-tolerance issue for me, and I know for countless other Americans. And I stand by my statement that I will not vote for any politician who votes for this thing. That includes either of two certain Democratic senators. Anyone prepping their "goddam you we have to win at any costs!" kneejerk e-mail may, as always, refer to the following.
Give me your money!
Using crude PayPal-related trickery, books, pins, and stickers are now available on the merchandise page. Hopefully I can get a more efficient system in place soon, but for now, the whole "log into PayPal and send me money" concept seems doable.
I'm really proud of the book; it's my first publication of solely my own work, and I'm amazed at how great it came out. The pins, especially the R.C. ones, did well at the MoCCA festival. Gentlemen- take my advice here. Your girlfriend thinks the kitty's adorable. Buy her the pin. You'll thank me later.
July 6, 2004
Missing all the easy jokes
The disadvantage of a day job, of course, is that when news of high interest, for example, the revelation of a Presidential candidate's running mate, comes five minutes after you leave for work, you come home to find most of the easy one-liners and clever jokes have already been taken. So assume I made them all ex post facto, and laugh your ass off.
That said, the winner of the Festival of Hilarity is, hands down, the New York Post. You can't really top this, and for the worst tabloid in America, this is a new low. That's hard. If it's any consolation, the 1.2 million people made jobless thanks to George W. Bush will be happy to know there's probably a couple of jobs that just opened up over at the Post. Don't worry about your resume. They're not very big about accuracy over there anyhow. (Side note: what were they thinking in the first place? Do people really think that of all the media outlets in the world that would scoop Kerry's VP pick, the "sources" at Murdoch's right-wing yellow-tabloid plaything would be the most successful?)
What I did find interesting was, while reading MetaFilter and browsing the web during the workday (I'm efficient. Yep) the response from the GOP was amazing. Within two hours of the announcement, Bush, the GOP, and the right-wing blogospehre had uncorked their well-preserved bottles of babble. The vintage? Anything before 2000, since as you all know Republicans tend to forget everything that happened from four years ago on.
For example, about how George W. Bush's total political experience before becoming President was serving six years as Governor of Texas- which is literally the most fangless Grubernatorial seat in America, a result of the State Lege's determination to withhold total power from the Executive branch. But now, all of a sudden, John Edwards serving only a six-year Senate term makes him "too inexperienced" to be Vice-President. Hmm. Maybe if he ran several failed businesses instead of being a successful lawyer, he'd appear to have better managerial skills.
And that leads to my favorite: the lawyer thing. The best line came from one of the GOP operatives on one of the cable news shows: "Americans just don't like lawyers. Democrats are going to have to deal with that."
With Bush's approval ratings below 50% because of a horrific economic policy that destroyed millions of jobs, the worst environmental record in American history, and a mismanaged war that killed nearly a thousand Americans, I really have this problem believing that Americans will suddenly like Bush because the running mate of his opponent sues neglegent corporations. It's kind of up there with the George Will types who think two Senators on the ticket... you know, means a damn thing. The average voters in Fayetteville, Arkansas are going to weigh in how Bush's economy cost them their job a bit more than how influential his opponents were in the State Legislature.
Now, I could be wrong- after all, unlike apparently 75% of the internet, I don't have a degree in Political Science. I did study film, though, and that's what makes the whole "Edwards LAWYER! Edwards BAD!" rhetoric so damn hilarious. It's the ultimate sign that the Republicans just do not get it.
Look at the guy. Don't you see? You "hate" lawyers when Tommy Lee Jones or some crusty old Southern man is playing them. Edwards is the good guy lawyer. He's FIGHTING the angry, nasty old man. He's Keanu, and Matthew McConaughey, and Tom Cruise! You look at and listen to Edwards and you want him to win the case, save the day, and impregnate Sanda Bullock. He can HANDLE THE TRUTH!
Admit it, America, it's really that simple to you. We all, as Americans, are really this dumb. This is actually how it works. American Idol? 100 million votes. Let's see that during an actual election. And yet there's self-described "credible" Republican strategists out there that think they'll put Edwards next to Dick Cheney and make Edwards look nasty. Because he's a lawyer.
Since, you know, embodiment of all that is sorrow goes over so much better.
First of all, Rick James, bitch! Because I've got for you the Newest comic - "Gripping tales from the Fair and Balanced Hospital!"
Yes, I'm going back on the comics wagon since I decided to wait any longer would suck. It's really that simple. But wait, there's more, and it's coming from the merchandise department.
The CafePress store has two new seasonal items (which means they'll only be available for the next few weeks, if CafePress informs me correctly). They are a women's ringer t-shirt bearing the trademark R.C. image, available in your choice of yellow, pink, and mint pastel colors. Now also available is a new Joe Lieberman Kuribo Experience T-shirt, now in green and twice as foreboding. The original version, and of course a selection of other fine products, are always available GIVE ME YOUR MONEY and more items will be added hopefully in the upcoming few days.
Now, coming off of the comic show there's been some interest in when the book will be available. The answer is, sometime this week. That's a promise, even if I have to freakin' chug no-doz to get it set up. For the book, stickers, and pins, products will be available via PayPal. If you want an example of how it will work, take a look at Mikhaela's site right now; it'll be the same system.
In fact, since I don't have my books up for sale yet, just friggin' go to Mikhaela'a site and buy some of hers.
That's all for now, but considering how lazy I am, that should be more than enough. Time for nap-nap.
July 5, 2004
Hack writer blatantly obsessed with hating Michael Moore update
Confidential to Andy S. - Fahrenheit 9/11 hit $60 million today.
This announcement sponsored by No-Doz
From what I've been reading on all the other blogs, it looks like the word is repidly escaping that Kerry is going to annouce Dick Gephardt as his running mate sometime this week, perhaps even tomorrow.
Now, this could be a very good act of misdirection, a complete lie pulled out of thin air, or the worst-case scenario- completely true.
In which case, I can only say here and now that I wish John Kerry the best of luck for the remainder of the race, and that his campaign staff filter oxygenated Red Bull through the speakers at every campaing stop to prevent the inevitable effect of watching two of the most categorically uninteresting people alive attempt to make people be interested in them.