Thursday, June 30, 2005

Ted Kennedy demands accountability

Dean Barnett points to this little gem by Sen. Edward Kennedy posted at Daily Kos. See how cleverly I avoided linking to one of the most distasteful blogs on the web. I'll let Dean do it for me.

Anyway, Sen. Ted's little number is titled, "Accountability on Iraq" and goes to some lengths to demand accountability from President Bush. After you have stifled the guffaws brought on by the specter of Ted Kennedy demanding accountability from anyone about anything I'll send you into paroxysms of laughter with this:
"Patrick and I were ... making out, kissing. ... About ten minutes at the most later, the senator emerged through the door from inside the house ... and at this time he only has on a button-down oxford shirt. He has taken his slacks off. I didn't see if he had any Jockeys or boxers on [because the shirt] came halfway down the thighs. He was standing there, wobbling, and had no pants on. ... And I was just really freaked out."

Here is Sen. Kennedy preparing for Hyannis Port's famous annual Greased Pole Climbing Contest For Fat Guys - Shirtless Div.

Here is Sen. Kennedy competing in Hyannis Port's famous annual Pylon Slalom Race For REALLY Fat Guys - Shirtless Div.

Here is Sen. Kennedy at work in his senate office on his latest "Demand for Accountability" crusade

You'll need Kleenex for this one.

This is the story of Crystal Owen, widow of Staff Sgt. Michael Owen, KIA, Iraq.
Owen was last in line to meet the president, so she chatted with the others to pass the time. Officials had set up rooms for the meetings that looked like lounges.

At 6 p.m., it was Owen's turn. She was nervous. A Secret Service agent entered the room where she waited, startling her. He told her to sit down, that the president would be in shortly.

And then there he was, George W. Bush. He came in, gave her a big hug and sat down with her.

She showed him a picture of her husband and talked about his job. It was an easy-going conversation. A White House photographer took their picture. She gave the president a present - a stainless steel bracelet with two names engraved on it.

I would like you to wear it tonight during your speech, she told the president. He said he had received such gifts in the past, but no one had ever asked him to wear them.

He put it on right there.
Mrs. Owen wrote a letter to the president after her husband died.
She asked him to see the fight to the finish, to accomplish the mission so her husband's death would not be in vain.

On Tuesday, the president told Owen and the nation he intended to do just that.

The bracelet Owen gave to the president was engraved with the names of her husband and Santos. It listed their unit and the date they were killed.

Owen couldn't tell if it was the bracelet or the president's watch she saw shining during his speech. She knew he wore it though. The president told her he would be honored.

Only one thing made Tuesday less than perfect, Owen said: "The one person that this would mean the most to isn't here to hear the story."

Bowling for Castro

Fidel Castro :arrived in Puerto La Cruz to visit his favorite lapdog, Hugo Chavez, and said:
"This may be the only visit I've made in which there was no plan to attack me, simply because I wasn't going to make the trip."

"During 40 years, every time I have left the country they have organised plans to attack me, without exception."

"I have had to make things up all my life in order to survive, which is a miracle."
To which Chavez wept and slobbered,
"You are a miracle, Fidel."
How little do they know. They know not how close they came to assassination. I had planned to attend the Caribbean oil summit myself and drop my bowling ball on Castro's head, knocking off Chavez with the ricochet. However, my car's engine failed on the way to the airport due to crummy Pemex gasoline and I missed my flight.

Castro also claimed that men with high-powered rifles with infrared sights with a range of 1200 meters had planned to kill him in the past. 1200 meters? That would be, um, lessee here, about 1320 yards or 3/4 of a mile. I don't think I can see anything smaller than a barn at 3/4 of a mile and couldn't hit that with any weapon short of a Tomahawk cruise missile.

I'll rely on my trusty Brunswick Absolute Inferno 16 pounder, thank you.

Lance Armstrong and Jan Ullrich



None dare call it treason

"For those of you who do, as a matter of principle, oppose war in any form, the idea of supporting a conscientious objector who's already been inducted in his combat service in Iraq might have a certain appeal. But let me ask you this: Would you render the same level of support to someone who hadn't conscientiously objected, but rather instead rolled a grenade under their line officer in order to neutralize the combat capacity of their unit?"

"...Conscientious objection removes a given piece of cannon fodder from the fray. Fragging an officer has a much more impactful effect."
Ward Churchill, Portland, Oregon- 6/23/05
I dare to call this treason.

Linked to other fans of Ward Churchill: Michelle Malkin, Red State Rant, Conservative Outpost, Decision '08, Dean Esmay, Blackfive, Blogotional, Murdoc Online, Technicalities, Daly Thoughts, The Chief Brief, Right in Texas, Trey Jackson with the video of speech, Les Enfants Terrible, ROFASix (nice squirrel, called an ardillo down here), The New Editor, Teen Patriot, California Conservative, Lifelike Pundits, The Anti-Idiotarian Rottweiler (nice doggie), Villainous Company - heap big stupid, Ed Driscoll, Ed Driscoll - more, The Jawa Report, Demosophia, Anticipatory Retaliation, A Mentsh Trakht "Fake Indian with masters degree" - I answer your question, Modern Crusader, Marc Cooper, Armed Victim, The Penguin Proletariat - on the warpath, Coalition of the Swilling - for extra credit, The Recovering Democrat, She Who Will Be Obeyed, The Eclectic Econoclast - don't invite this guy back,

Because it is the LAW

The blogosphere is alive with indignation over Time Magazine's decision to turn over the notes of its reporter, Matthew Cooper, to a federal grand jury as ordered by U.S. District Judge Thomas Hogan. Why did Judge Hogan so order? Because it's the law.

The Supreme Court could not see any constitutional issue involved here, so SCOTUS refused to hear the appeal of Cooper and New York Times reporter Judith Miller. Why did SCOTUS refuse to review the case? Because it's the law.

Why is Time magazine handing over the notes? Because it's the law.

Time Magazine spokesmen said:
"The same Constitution that protects the freedom of the press requires obedience to final decisions of the courts and respect for their rulings and judgments. That Time Inc. strongly disagrees with the courts provides no immunity."

"The Supreme Court made its ruling. Once it made its ruling there was no other choice but to comply. I feel we are not above the law."
Now Arthur Sulzberger Jr., the New York Times' publisher, says:
"We are deeply disappointed by Time Inc.'s decision to deliver the subpoenaed records." He noted that one of its reporters served 40 days in jail in 1978 in a similar dispute.

Our focus is now on our own reporter, Judith Miller, and in supporting her during this difficult time."
In other words, Sulzberger intends to sacrifice his reporter by breaking the law.

I thought that rule of law was one of the foundations upon which our democracy was based. Apparently I am in the minority. Apparently persons or institutions may ignore whatever law they find to be inconvenient. I also believed that the responsibility for making law rested with the legislative branch of the government. Apparently not; it rests with whatever individual or private institution that cares to take it upon themselves to make their own law. I was taught that individuals who make their own law to fit their own needs were anarchists. I was taught that the state of individuals or private institutions making their own custom laws at whatever point satisfied their personal needs was called anarchy.

Here is what others are saying today:
Joe Gandelman: "Time Magazine is about to discard a fundamental journalist principle."

Duncan Black: "From this perspective Time taints their entire publication -- you can't rely on anyone working for that magazine to protect their sources because the publishers/editors will sell out all of their journalist's sources."

Hugh Hewitt: "When the chips are down, Time will sell you out."

John Cole: "Not that I ever would, but now I sure as hell will never work for Time."
And then he goes on to say:
"If you really believe there should be a privilege, a confidentiality, then the execs at Time should be doing everything they can to fight this, even if that includes a little lawlessness."
Well, John, I believe that murdering my wife in her sleep is "just a little lawlessness". So, according to your analysis, I have every right to do that, eh?

Look, I have the utmost admiration for all of the bloggers quoted above. With the exception of Atrios, I almost always agree with them. But not this time. It is outrageously irresponsible to suggest breaking the law. Live in Mexico for awhile and you will see what it is like living in a land where "rule of law" does not apply.

Mexico has almost all of the same laws on the books as in the U.S., and more. But in Mexico the politicians, the police, the prosecutors, the judges and just about anybody with money, political muscle, goon muscle or a large crowd waving machetes can make their own law, right on the spot. This filters all the way down to the private individual who drives the wrong way on a one way street, double parks, blocking the street, drives 50kph in a 30kph school zone, makes a left hand turn from a right hand lane or sometimes two or three lanes to the right. Sure, these things happen in the U.S., but here it is all day, everyday, everywhere.

This is what you are suggesting and it is not right.

Linked to: Joe Gandelman, Eschaton, Eschaton II, Daly Thoughts, John Cole, The Jawa Report, Orin Kerr@Volokh, Outside the Beltway, Morning Poo's Office Break, The Peking Duck, Media Slander, Radio News America, MTK, Guide To Midwestern Culture, The Next Left, Jeff Gannon, YesButNoButYes, The Disenchanted Forest - and it's only Cooper off the hook, not Judith Miller, ReidBlog, Trust but Verify, America Is a Liberal Concept,, Guerra Eterna, The Huffington Post, On the Wright, Tapscott's Copy Desk, Bill Quick, QandO, PoliPundit - I think the commenters here are right, BeldarBlog,

Mexican postage stamps under fire


Lots of chatter today about the release of a set of postage stamps in Mexico. The character portrayed on the stamps, one Memin PenguĂ­n, is a caricature of a Mexican of African descent and his mother. Memin was a popular comic book character for about 20 years in Mexico, up to about 1977. By our standards, it is blatatantly rascist. By Mexican standards it is not. Mexican society is a rascist society kind of like that of Japan. Intermarriage, even fraternization, between the mestizos and the indigenous peoples is frowned upon and is rare. Even more rare is intermariage or fraternization with blacks. By mestizos I mean the lighter complected Mexicans of mixed Spanish/Indian or European/Indian descent. In Mexico, the whiter your skin the better.

Mexican mestizos see nothing wrong with this and do not consider it rascist at all. They also see nothing wrong with the timing of the release of the stamps, coming on the heels of the Jesse Jackson/Al Sharpton/Vicente Fox bruhaha over the "jobs even blacks won't do" statement. Mexicans don't consider the timing of the release of the stamps to be stupid at all, either. I report, you decide.

Here are the actual stamps being released for sale:

Stamp images from Res Ipsa Loquitur who has some comments of his own. He's right about this; Mexico is an uncivil, violent, rascist, corrupt society. He's wrong about it being a banana republic. It is a narco republic. I know. I live here. I'll probably get shot for this post.

UPDATE: A Mexican embassy official says that the character is based on a Cuban. Hmmm... didn't Richard Pryor play a "Cuban" baseball player in a movie once?

Linked to: Res Ipsa Loquitur, Joe Gandelman, Michelle Malkin, Narcissistic Views, GOP and the City - there are no Mexicans who see this as racist - congratulations and keep your mouth shut about this while you are there, Sadly, No, Cheat Seeking Missiles, Don Singleton, Shrink Wrapped, Balloon Juice, American Digest, Los pasos del cangrejo, PostWatch, FirefoxIE, JamulBlog, Pandagon, The State of..., Ain't Nobody's Business, Waveflux, Blog Alice, The Brutha Code - I hope you're in a better mood tomorrow - Note: this blog contains a lot language, WFMU, Liberal Serving, Weapon of Mass Distraction, America Service, Ramblings Heard in the Cage of Camp X-Ray, Immigration Watchdog, Amphatememe, Na Han, Playahata, Random Stuff, All the Marketing,

2 Iraqis arrested trying to cross Mexico border

This is disturbing. The issue of the porous border between the U.S. and Mexico is going to heat up to the point of exploding in our faces if something is not done, and soon. The Islamofascists are learning that is is easier to slip into the U.S. illegally across our southern border than it is to try and enter legally.

Very little money can buy a lot in Mexico and it is no big trick to find a "pollero" (chicken herder) who will guide someone across. The arrests here were no doubt the result of a rip-off of the Iraqis by a pollero connected to the police. The pollero takes the Iraqi's money then burns them to the cops, thereby earning a pat on the back and "future considerations" from the authorities.

I hope someone wakes up before a real disaster strikes.

Linked to: Chris Kelly@The Immigration Blog, California Conservative, Our Way of Life, Juan Mann@The Immigration Blog, Our Way of Life II, Mike's America, Mexico Deals, Radio News America, Hispanic Trending, Social Sense, Crystal Clear, Sierra Faith, Common Sense, American Serf, Dark Bilious Vapors, Res Ipsa Loquitur,

Quote of the day

"Always remember that you are absolutely unique.
Just like everyone else."
Margaret Mead
That goes on my list of favorite quotes, along with,
"No matter where you go, there you are."

"Everyone has to believe in something. I believe I'll have another drink."

"The thing about drinking is; when you're feeling bad, it makes you feel good and when you're feeling good it makes you feel better."
Thanks to: Apprentice Review

Wednesday, June 29, 2005

The clothes off my back

End poverty now!
Originally uploaded by markinmexico.
Donald Trump pictured doing his part to help clothe the less fortunate. Hey, don't laugh. There are probably $25,000 worth of clothes in that basket. Unless they are some ex-wife's clothes, in which case, make that $50,000.

Linked to: demoncat4log, e agora, Jose?, Cat's Space, SwineBass, Logical Blather, One Life, Paris Hilton, Half Sigma, Wedding Gifts, Daily DVD, Moshe's Corner,

"I give at the office."

From India comes this description of the reality of sex in the office. For the young, newly affluent (by their standards) tech workers in the Indian call centers, working 12-13 hour days leaves little time for romance or a private life. So, they take it, or give it, in the office. All the while having to dodge surveillance cameras, sometimes successfully, sometimes not.

Fan Mail

I received a comment to the George Bush speech post from a frequent visitor named "godessaradia". I assume that she is a she, if not then he can inform me. Here is the comment:
Perhaps you can fill me in on the debates that we may never win this war without a draft. It's been rumored as such, and we all know that recruitment has not been meeting their quota's for months.

As for the first part, I distinctly remember Presidant Bush, Vice Presidant Cheney, and several other prominant figures (Including Democrats) assuring the nation that this would be a quick war with few casualties and that most of our time would be spent helping the iraqi people rebuild their country instead of killing insurgents. That was the whole reason I backed this war from the start. So what happened?
goddessaradia | 06.29.05 - 12:21 pm | #
And here is my reply:

No one in the administration ever, never, said that this would be a quick war with few casualties. If you can find any such statement, actually quoted on the net, please let me know where it is.

However, the war itself was quick and there were very few casualties. The bulk of Saddam's armed forces surrendered or fled or were killed within 30 hours of the invasion.

It has been the cleaning up of the mess he left behind that has been the problem. Foreign jihadists have flooded the country and the decision was made by our leaders to allow this to continue so that the enemy could be fought in one place, rather than pursuing them all over the world. Martyrs from Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, UAE, Yemen, Jordan, Egypt, Iran, Syria, Qatar, Bahrain, Oman, Algeria, Libya, Morocco, France, Belgium, Germany, Italy, Chechnya, Afghanistan, Uzbekistan, Kazakstan and several other -stans, Britain, Canada, Australia, Indonesia, the USA and several other countries have flocked to Iraq to get their 72 virgins.

It will take a while to kill them all.

We had no idea when we got there that the country's infrastructure was in such sad condition. Roads, bridges, streets, water supplies, the electricity grid, the oil fields, the airports, schools, hospitals and social services were in disastrous condition. All of the Oil-for-Food money not paid in bribes to European, Russian and Chinese politicians and United Nations officials had been spent by Saddam, Uday and Qusay on weapons, palaces, booze and women.

We destroyed the weapons, drank the booze, made the palaces our military headquarters and set the women free.

Now we rebuild the infrastructure, a project that will take many years and cost billions and billions of dollars.

Once the Sunni are fully convinced that the Shia and Kurds, whom the Sunni repressed and murdered by the millions during Saddam's reign, are not going to exact revenge and that there will be a place for them in the government of Iraq, this game will be over for us. The Sunni will turn on the foreigners among them as well as on any Iraqi Baathists still around, and kill them all.

There will be trouble in this country long after we are gone. It will be only the second democracy in all of the Arab world, Palestine and North Africa - Israel being the only other one. These people don't know how to run a country. They haven't the foggiest idea. It will be a long hard road for them but there is a light at the end of the tunnel. That light is called HOPE.
I was remiss in not answering her first question. The United States military is an all professional force and will remain that way, unless the Chinese attack us (aka commit suicide). If our military shrinks due to enlistment problems then we will fight with a smaller military. That is not a good thing for our enemies to contemplate. We would have to replace manpower with technological power. That means more and bigger and more dangerous weapons.

The last time that the US military faced a similar problem was in 1945. Our leaders were faced with the prospect of invading the home islands of Japan with an armed force not large enough to defeat and occupy the country. We were faced with the prospect of outrageous casualty numbers if we invaded. Casualty numbers that our leaders did not wish to contemplate. So, look what we had to do - Hiroshima and Nagasaki. No one should wish to have to even faintly consider such an action again.

It won't ever be necessary (again, depending on the Chinese) but I bring it up as an example of the use of our technology to save American lives. True, it was at the expense of hundreds of thousands of our enemy's lives. We didn't start the war - they did.

Linked to: Norbizness, Think Progress, No More Mister Nice Blog, Damian Penney, Alpha Patriot, The Moderate Voice, Blogs for Bush, The Left Coaster, Centerfield, Maha Blog I, Maha Blog II, QandO, Patterico, Tom Maguire, The nTrain,


When the going gets tough...

What did you expect to hear? The president's speech tonight has been described as "treading water". Of course he is treading water. What else can he do? He made it plain to us, over and over again, that this would be a long, tough fight. It should come as no surprise to anyone but the blind and the MoveOn/Michael Moore/George Soros crowd that we are in a fight that will not be won in years, maybe even decades. How else can we proceed? How else could we have proceeded?

We have created a magnet for the world's Islamofascists in Iraq and that means that some Americans will die. Many more of the jihadists will die, however. We will win if, and only if we stay the course and do not allow them to run us out. Calls for a fixed withdrawal timetable are laughable. If we said, "Ok, in ten years we will leave," the terrorists would simply hunker down and wait patiently for ten years to pass. For the United States to be victorious in this fight, we have to make the enemy understand that we will stay and continue hunting them and killing them for fifty years, if that is what is required.

I just do not understand the opposition. They have to know that every statement that accuses our soldiers of losing the moral high ground, the president of lying to get us into Iraq, that the American people want our troops out immediately, or that we are Nazis or Stalinists or Maoists or as bad as Pol Pot causes young American men and women to lose their lives. But they continue. What selfish bastards they are.

How can some jerk like Joseph Biden go to Iraq and then return and announce that the Iraqi reconstruction is a disaster? Does he want to be president so badly that he will try to do it through the blood of his fellow Americans? Apparently so.

And all of the huffing and puffing about enlistment and reenlistment rates being down? When I hear this I wonder just how stupid our politicians and their supporters think we are. Look at these statistics comparing the "just" war with the war in Iraq.:
W.W.II - 33% enlisted, 67% drafted

Initially only 21 to 35 year-olds were to be taken but not enough volunteers came forward so the draft was lowered to 18.

Iraq - 100% enlisted - there is no draft.

W.W.II - 4 year period- 350,000 draft evaders.

Iraq - 0 draft evaders - there is no draft.

W.W.II - Desertion "in the zone" Europe and Pacific theaters: 40,000 convicted servicemen. Prior to D-DAY the British jails were full of US deserters that were brought to dockside in handcuffs.

Iraq - 6000 since 2003 when war began - fiscal year 2004 desertion rates the lowest since 1998.
There is a war on. I'm a kid sitting at home talking to mom and dad and grandpa and grandma about enlisting. What advice do I get? What are mommy and daddy and granny and gramps going to tell me? 9 out of 10 will advise me on another career choice.

And now we've lost a Chinook in Afghanistan with 17 aboard, fate unknown. This is not going to stop for a while, folks.

If we cut and run, it will never stop.

Linked to: Eschaton, Sadly, No, OTB, The Glittering Eye, Flopping Aces, Posse Incitatus, The Political Teen - with video of speech, Decision 08, Alpha Patriot, Iowa Voice, Resurrection Song, Bennelli Brothers, California Conservative, Dean Esmay, Jeff Goldstein - going nucular, Blue State Conservatives, Blogs for Bush, In the Bullpen, Suitably Flip, Down Deep in Texas, ryanVOX, MacsMind, SoCalPundit, Gay Orbit, RantingProfs, CommonSenseDesk, Middle Earth Journal, Professor Bainbridge, PoliBlog, INDC Journal, The Jawa Report, The Captain, bRight and Early, Political Musings, BronxPundit,

Judith Miller has a friend in Bill Safire

William Safire is angry. In this op-ed, he blasts the Judith Miller/Matthew Cooper/Valerie Plame prosecutor, Patrick Fitzgerald, for pursuing Miller and Cooper, two reporters, when quite possibly no crime has been committed. The man who actually printed the story identifying Judith Plame as a CIA employee, Robert Novak, isn't even on the hook here. Why not? A good question that needs answering. Safire asks how Novak got off the hook and says he owes us all a column describing how it happened.

I agree with Safire, up to a point. Here is where I don't agree. Yes, there has been a violation of the law. The law says that one must answer the questions posed in front of a federal grand jury unless one can impose the 5th amendment guarantee against self-incrimination. Since neither Miller nor Cooper can do this, they must answer the questions. That's the law. If it is a bad law, a federal grand jury is not the place to change it.

Safire says that the case was about the "outing" of an agent - supposedly covert, but working openly at C.I.A. headquarters - in Robert Novak's column two years ago by unnamed administration officials angry at her husband's prewar Iraq criticism. He states this charge about the two angry officials as fact. If William Safire knows something that we don't know, then he owes us a column explaining it to us.

Linked to: Tom Maguire, Pandagon, Citizen Paine, Canadian Journalist, The News Blog, The Flack, Right Side of the Rainbow, The Sideshow,

"We'll catch Zarqawi when we're ready,"

This is encouraging. The money quote:
"The Iraqis will kill every foreigner who comes into their neighborhood when they're ready," said the senior official who has spent months in Iraq. "They don't want foreigners in Iraq."
I certainly hope that this is true.

This lady is not a she.

An Italian judge has asked Interpol to help in the arrest and extradition to Italy of 13 CIA agents suspected of kidnapping a suspected terrorist and transporting said terrorist to Egypt. There, according to the Italian judge, the unfortunate fellow, one Osama Moustafa Hassan Nasr, aka Abu Omar, was delivered to Egyptian police who were less than nice in their interrogation techniques.

The alleged ringleader of the snatch is former Milan CIA station chief Robert Seldon Lady. He is reportedly retired and living in Turin, Italy. When Italian police raided his home - surprise!; he wasn't there. Now the Italians want Interpol to help bring him and 12 other CIA agents to Italy for trial. Fat chance.

Here is the howler, however.
"It appears to be the most serious violation of national sovereignty in the history of the republic," said opposition deputy Marco Minniti."
Really? Let's take a short walk back through the history of the Italian Republic's national sovereignty. This is a chronological list of every Italian government of the Italian Republic.
Ferruccio Parri - June 21, 1945 - Dec. 8, 1945 - less than 6 months
No Government - Dec. 8, 1945 - Dec. 10, 1945 - 2 days
Alcide De Gasperi - Dec. 10, 1945 - July 1, 1946 - less than 7 months
No Government - July 1 to July 13 - 12 days
Alcide De Gasperi - July 13, 1946 - Jan. 20, 1947 – 5 months
No Government – Jan. 20 to Feb. 2 – 13 days
Alcide De Gasperi - Feb. 2, 1947 - May 13, 1947 – 3 months
No Government – May 13 to May 31 - 18 days
Alcide De Gasperi - May 31, 1947 - May 12, 1948 - almost 12 months
No Government - May 12 to May 31 - 19 days
Alcide De Gasperi - May 31, 1947 - May 12, 1948 - almost 12 months
No Government - May 12 '48 to Jan 27 '50 - 20 months????
Alcide De Gasperi - Jan. 27, 1950 - July 16, 1951 - almost 18 months
No Government - July 16 to july 26 - 9 days
Alcide De Gasperi - July 26, 1951 - June 29, 1953 - 23 months
No government - June 29 to July 16 - 17 days
Alcide De Gasperi - July 16, 1953 - July 28, 1953 - 11 days
No Government - July 28 to August 17 - 20 days
Giuseppe Pella . Aug. 17, 1953 - Jan. 5, 1954 - less than 5 months
No Government - Jan. 5 to Jan 18 - 13 days
Amintore Fanfani - Jan. 18, 1954 - Jan. 30, 1954 - 12 days
No Government - Jan. 30 to Feb. 10 - 11 days
Mario Scelba - Feb. 10, 1954 - June 22, 1955 - 16 months
No Government - June 22 to July 6 - 14 days
Antonio Segni - July 6, 1955 - May 6, 1957 - 22 months
No Government - May 6 to May 19 - 13 days
Adone Zoli - May 19, 1957 - June 19, 1958 - 13 months
No Government - June 19 to July 1 - 11 days
Amintore Fanfani - July 1, 1958 - Jan. 26, 1959 - less than 7 months
No Government - Jan 26 to Feb 15 - 20 days
Antonio Segni - Feb. 15, 1959 - Feb. 24, 1960 - 12 months
No Government - Feb 24 to Mar 25 - 29 days (if leap year - 30 days)
Fernando Tambroni - Mar. 25, 1960 - July 19, 1960 - less than 4 months
No Government - July 19 to July 26 - 7 days
Amintore Fanfani - July 26, 1960 - Feb. 2, 1962 - 17 months
No Government - Feb 2 to Feb 21 - 19 days
Amintore Fanfani - Feb. 21, 1962 - May 16, 1963 - 15 months
No Government - May 16 to June 21 - 36 days
Giovanni Leone - June 21, 1963 - Nov. 5, 1963 - less than 5 months
No Government - Nov 5 to Dec 4 - 29 days
Aldo Moro - Dec. 4, 1963 - June 26, 1964 - less than 7 months
No Government - June 26 to July 22 - 26 days
Aldo Moro - July 22, 1964 - Jan. 21, 1966 - 29 months
No Government - Jan 21 to Feb 23 - 33 days
Aldo Moro - Feb. 23, 1966 - June 5, 1968 - 27 months
No Government - June 5 to June 24 - 19 days
Giovanni Leone - June 24, 1968 - Nov. 19, 1968 - less than 5 months
No Government - Nov 19 to Dec 12 - 23 days
Mariano Rumor - Dec. 12, 1968 - July 5, 1969 - 19 months
No Government - July 5 to August 5 - 31 days
Mariano Rumor - Aug. 5, 1969 - Feb. 7, 1970 - 7 months
No Government - Feb 7 to Mar 27 - 49 days (if leap year - 50 days)
Mariano Rumor - Mar. 27, 1970 - July 6, 1970 - 3 months
No Government - July 6 to Aug 6 - 31 days
Emilio Colombo - Aug. 6, 1970 - Jan. 15, 1972 - 17 months
No Government - Jan 15 to Feb 17 - 33 days
Giulio Andreotti - Feb. 17, 1972 - Feb. 26, 1972 - 9 days
No Government - Feb 26 to June 26 - 4 months????
Giulio Andreotti - June 26, 1972 - June 12, 1973 - aaalmost 1 year
No Government - June 12 to July 7 - 25 days
Mariano Rumor - July 7, 1973 - March 2, 1974 - 7 months
No Government - Mar 2 to Mar 14 - 12 days
Mariano Rumor - March 14, 1974 - Oct. 3, 1974 - less than 7 months
No Government - Oct 3 to Nov 23 - 51 days
Aldo Moro - Nov. 23, 1974 - Jan. 7, 1976 - 13 months
No Government - Jan 7 to Feb 12 - 36 days
Aldo Moro - Feb. 12, 1976 - April 30, 1976 - 2 months
No Government - April 30 to July 29 - 3 months????
Giulio Andreotti - July 29, 1976 - Jan. 16, 1978 - 17 months
No Government - Jan 16 to Mar 11 - 54 days (if leap year - 55 days)
Giulio Andreotti - March 11, 1978 - Jan. 31, 1979 - 10 months
No Government - Jan 30 to Mar 20 - 49 days
Giulio Andreotti - March 20, 1979 - March 31, 1979 - 11 days
No Government - Mar 31 to Aug 4 - 4 months????
Francesco Cossiga - Aug. 4, 1979 - March 19, 1980 - 7 months
No Government - Mar 19 to Apr 4 - 16 days
Francesco Cossiga - April 4, 1980 - Sept. 27, 1980 - 5 months
No Government - Sep 27 to Oct 18 - 21 days
Arnaldo Forlani - Oct. 18, 1980 - May 26, 1981 - 7 months
No Government - May 26 to June 28 - 33 days
Giovanni Spadolini - June 28, 1981 - Aug. 7, 1982 - 13 months
No Government - Aug 7 to Aug 23 - 16 days
Giovanni Spadolini - Aug. 23, 1982 - Nov. 13, 1982 - less than 3 months
No Government - Nov 13 to Dec 1 - 18 days
Amintore Fanfani - Dec. 1, 1982 - April 29, 1983 - less than 5 months
No Government - Apr 29 to Aug 4 - 3 months????
Bettino Craxi - Aug. 4, 1983 - June 27, 1986 - aaalmost 18 months
No Government - Jun 27 to Aug 1 - 35 days
Bettino Craxi - Aug. 1, 1986 - March 3, 1987 - 7 months
No Government - Mar 3 to Apr 17 - 45 days????
Amintore Fanfani - April 17, 1987 - April 28, 1987 - 11 days
No Government - Apr 28 to July 28 - 3 months????
Giovanni Goria - July 28, 1987 - March 11, 1988 - less than 8 months
No Government - Mar 11 to Apr 13 - 33 days
Ciriaco De Mita - April 13, 1988 - May 19, 1989 - 13 months
No Government - May 19 to July 22 - 64 days
Giulio Andreotti - July 22, 1989 - March 29, 1991 - 20 months
No Government - Mar 29 to Apr 12 - 14 days
Giulio Andreotti - April 12, 1991 - April 24, 1992 - 12 months 12 days
No Government - Apr 24 to June 28 - 65 days????
Giuliano Amato - June 28, 1992 - April 22, 1993 - 10 months
No Government - Apr 22 to Apr 28 - 6 days
Carlo Azeglio Ciampi - April 28, 1993 - April 16, 1994 - aaalmost 1 year
No Government - Apr 16 to May 10 - 24 days
Silvio Berlusconi - May 10, 1994 - December 22, 1994 - 7 months
No Government - Dec 22 to Jan 17 - 26 days
Lamberto Dini - January 17, 1995 - May 17, 1996 - 16 months
No Government - 24 hours
Romano Prodi - May 18, 1996 - October 9, 1998 - 29 months
No Government - Oct 9 to Oct 21 - 12 days
Massimo D'Alema - October 21, 1998 - December 18, 1999 - 14 months
No Government - Dec 18 to Dec 22 - 4 days
Massimo D'Alema - December 22, 1999 - April 19, 2000
No Government - Apr 19 to Apr 25 - 6 days
Giuliano Amato - April 25, 2000 - June 11, 2001 - less than 14 months
Silvio Berlusconi - June 11, 2001 - April 20, 2005 - 46 months
No Government - Apr 20 to Apr 23 - 3 days
Silvio Berlusconi - April 23, 2005 - Who Knows?
Now, over this same time period we had:
Time period without a President (government) - 0 minutes - Vice President Johnson automatically became acting president when President Kennedy was incapacitated and was sworn in as president the same day as Kennedy's death. Vice President Gerald Ford became acting president immediately upon the resignation of Nixon and was sworn in as president the same day. Vice President Bush automatically became acting president upon the incapacitation of President Reagan, even though Alexander Haig was in charge.

It would appear to me that the most serious violations (and there have been many) of the sovereignty of the Italian Republic have been perpetrated by the Italian Republic itself.

Note: I really had no idea how long this would take when I started it.

Tuesday, June 28, 2005

Shelby Foote dies.

I just saw this on memeorandum. The great historian Shelby Foote has died. He was 88 years old. I had no idea he was that old. I would have guessed him to be in his mid sixties. In one of the greatest documentaries ever filmed, The Civil War, by Ken Burns, Foote told two stories which I will never forget. He related a telephone conversation with the granddaughter of Nathan Bedford Forrest, Confederate General and founder of the KKK. As best I remember the conversation as related by Mr. Foote, it went something like this:
Foote: "I have always believed that the Civil War produced two bonafide heroes, your grandfather and Abraham Lincoln."

Forrrest's granddaughter: "Well, you know, Mr. Foote, my family never did think too much of Mr. Lincoln."
And the other story related by Shelby during the documentary is, in my mind, the best story of the thousands of stories to come out of that war. Foote said that;
When William Tecumseh Sherman died in New York, the aged General Joseph E. Johnston, commander of the army that faced Sherman through most of his march to Atlanta and then again during his march through South Carolina, insisted on traveling to New York city for his old foe's funeral.

Upon his arrival, when it was realized who he was, he was asked to be an honorary pallbearer and he immediately agreed. It was a cold day in February with an icy rain falling but Johnston stood with bare head. One of his aides said to him, "General, don't you think you had better put your hat on?" General Johnston replied, "I knew that man Sherman, and if he were in my place and I were in his place, he would not put on his hat."

General Johnston died 7 days later of pneumonia.
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The Associated Press has me confused.

What day is this? Tuesday, right? Late afternoon? The AP is reporting that President Bush gave a speech on Tuesday evening about the situation in Iraq. Except that it's not yet Tuesday evening. And he hasn't given the speech, yet. This is how the Associated Press brings you the news, folks. The AP, apparently given a transcript of the president's speech in advance of the speech itself, writes the report about the speech, quotes the president, who hasn't yet said a damned word, then releases the report several hours in advance of the speech. Good work there.

Obviously the release of the report was a boner on the part of some hapless and soon-to-be-unemployed technician at the AP. But this also tells us that the AP, and who knows how many more MSM outlets, writes "news" reports prior to the news event occurring. Faith in the MSM? Not much, thanks.

Linked to: Michelle Malkin, In the Bullpen, Pink Flamingo Bar and Grill, The Captain, OTB, Ed Driscoll, WordParts, American Conservative Daily, The Dead Pool, Through-A-Glass-Darkly, Not Your Father's America (a MoveOn blog), Think Progress, Suburban Guerrilla, From My Window, The Political Teen - you're to late, you've missed it, Disinterested Party, Daily Grit, Daily Pundit, The Counterterrorism Blog,

John Kerry , same-o lame-o

In John kerry's guest editorial in the NYT we get the same-o ideas by the lame-o losing presidential candidate. The only new idea that Kerry has, and a shockingly bad idea at that, is to incorporate the so called Badr brigade into the Iraqi national militia. That would be about the same as the LAPD incorporating the Hell's Angels into its anti-street gang campaign. After the 'Angels gleefully help wipe out the opposition, who has to handle the last remaining, suddenly omnipotent, street gang?

In poking around the blogosphere, Gregory Djerejian at THE BELGRAVIA DISPATCH does a superb job of dissecting Kerry's points. Djerejian:
This is typical Kerry isn't it? Pretend you have a new idea when, in actuality, what you are proposing is actually already taking place. But dramatize the issue and, without thinking through all the consequences, make more 'robust' the policy recommendation so it sounds like you are offering up something new. In other words, it's a matter of degree. Yes, we must (carefully, methodically) integrate some pesh merga and Badr (ensuring, for instance, they are not Mahdi Militia) into the national army. But not like Kerry suggests, seemingly rushed and whole-sale, so as to alienate the Sunnis. Again, he doesn't really care what the consequences are for Iraqi democratization--and is more preening in the New York Times pretending he has a better, more viable exit strategy than Bush. He doesn't. Please don't be fooled.
Visit The Belgravia Dispatch now and read it all.

Many problems with Haloscan, again. Some trackbacks never arrived, others twice. DAMN! Please show mercy.

Linked to: Newshog, Comments from Left Field, Democracy Arsenal, Tom Maguire, The Left Coaster, Obsidian Wings, Neurath's Boat, Fables of the Reconstruction, Balloon Juice, The Belgravia Dispatch, Pejman, WILLisms, Ezra Klein, The Anti Idiotarian Rottweiler - nice doggie, Number 9 Don't forget - he served in Viet Nam, Most Certainly Not, QuickRob, Speed of Thought, In the Bullpen, Sactodan, Solomonia, Villainous Company, Cao's Blog, TMH's Bacon Bits, Gribbet's Word,

Friday, June 24, 2005

Invitation To Corruption

I live in Mexico. Here, the right of Eminent Domain, for the public good, of course, follow closely the ideal as envisioned by the Supreme Court and the New York Times.

In other words, you have property rights out the kazoo, you just don't have the right to keep your property nor to determine its worth when it is stripped away from you. In Mexico they compensate the rich influential landowner $25 per square foot when they take his property and the campesino farmer $2 per square foot when they take his property. The politicians line their pockets and the rich influential landowners get richer and more influential.

I am quite sure that yesterday's Supreme Court decision, which the NYT is so slobberingly touting, has politicians and developers all over the nation salivating with anticipation of profits to come. The decision, a narrow 5-4 vote, is an invitation to corruption unparalleled since prohibition.

Developers will be fanning out all across the country looking at economically depressed areas where they may grease palms and have homeowner's property legally confiscated. The politicians will be desperately seeking those developers. And the liberals on the high court have empowered all this.

We are going to see a wave of private property confiscations the like of which we haven't seen since the days of Robert Moses in New York City. By the way, in the case that you had not noted it, New York City is where the headquarters of the New York Time is located and private property confiscation by the city was how the Times acquired the land upon which its new headquarters now stands. So how could the Times do anything other than tout this decision?

Linked to: many problems with Haloscan today - please be forgiving.
Michelle Malkin, Hold the Mayo, Right Side of the Rainbow, The Anti.Idiotarian Rottweiler - nice doggie, RadioActive Chief, Liberty News, Angry in the Great White North, Florida Cracker, Right Wing Nut House, Danny Carlton, Mark Tapscott,, FlapsBlog, Redeem America, The Captain, Pejman, Balloon Juice, EveryMan, Don Singleton, Daly Thoughts, Prof. Bainbridge, The Buyout Blog, Maha Blog, INDC Journal, Jeff Goldstein, The Right Nation - anybody here speak Italian?, MuD and PHuD, Mind of Mog, Pull on Superman's Cape, Darleen's Place, Brain Shavings, Arguing With Signposts, Silflay Hraka,

Three Strikes, You're Out. Bye Bye Teddy

In a confrontation between Donald Rumsfeld and Ted Kennedy yesterday in the Senate, Ted said:
"In baseball, it's three strikes, you're out," Kennedy said before a standing-room-only session of the Armed Services Committee. "What is it for the secretary of defense? Isn't it time for you to resign?"
Strike One: Edward Kennedy expelled from Harvard for cheating on an exam by paying a friend to take it for him.

Strike Two: Edward Kennedy pleads guilty to leaving the scene of an accident where he walked away and allowed Mary Jo Kopechne to drown in the car Ted had just drunkenly driven off of a bridge. Kennedy's handlers did not allow him to report the accident to police until the next day after he had sobered up.

Strike Three: "Patrick and I were ... making out, kissing. ... About ten minutes at the most later, the senator emerged through the door from inside the house ... and at this time he only has on a button-down oxford shirt. He has taken his slacks off. I didn't see if he had any Jockeys or boxers on [because the shirt] came halfway down the thighs. He was standing there, wobbling, and had no pants on. ... And I was just really freaked out."

Three strikes and you're out, Ted.

Downing Street Memos Don't Exist

Once again the Downing Street memos are being touted for something they are not. This time it is Paul Krugman, purportedly an economist but now a self styled expert on world political affairs, who describes the memos as"actually the minutes of a prime minister's meeting in July 2002." Well , actually they are not.

The minutes of the briefing do not exist, if they ever did. A reporter supposedly was given the briefing notes by a friend who remains anonymous. The friend remains anonymous because the briefing notes were stamped as secret by the British government. British law takes a dimmer view of illegally publicized government documents than we do here. The reporter says he had the notes transcribed by a clerk using an old typewriter. Then, according to which interviewer the reporter was talking to, he either returned the originals or destroyed the originals.

So what we have are manually typed notes by a clerk of what he/she thought he/she read which are claimed to be transcriptions of hand written notes by a clerk of what he/she thought he/she heard from a discussion which may or may not have ever taken place. Various statements by British government officials indicate that the briefing may have taken place as claimed. Do these notes accurately portray what occurred during the briefing? We may never know.

The left would hang George Bush with hand typed notes which no attorney would even attempt to introduce as evidence in a court of law in Britain, much less in the United States. Krugman should stick to economics. He's inept enough at that without exacerbating the situation by stepping into another realm where his ignorance is truly appalling.

Thursday, June 23, 2005

But did he mention Hitler?

Karl Rove make a typical political statement and a firestorm breaks out. Well, a firestorm among the Democrats, anyway, which I will admit is more akin to a tempest in a teapot. He said,
"Conservatives saw the savagery of 9/11 in the attacks and prepared for war; liberals saw the savagery of the 9/11 attacks and wanted to prepare indictments and offer therapy and understanding for our attackers."
And then he said that,
American armed forces overseas were in more jeopardy as a result of remarks last week by Senator Richard J. Durbin, Democrat of Illinois, who compared American mistreatment of detainees to the acts of "Nazis, Soviets in their gulags, or some mad regime - Pol Pot or others."
His mention of Nazis, Soviets, gulags and Pol Pot was necessary because what passes for political dialog these days absolutely demands that those terms be used. Otherwise you just can't get anyone's attention. It would appear that he got the Democrat's attention. They are now shrilly screeching for his resignation or outright firing. I doubt that Mr. Bush will spend more than a nanosecond in contemplating either of those suggestions. Mr. Rove went on to say,
"Let me just put this in fairly simple terms: Al Jazeera now broadcasts the words of Senator Durbin to the Mideast, certainly putting our troops in greater danger. No more needs to be said about the motives of liberals."
Now I would have to most strongly disagree with Mr. Rove on that last point. I don't think that most liberals really want to put our troops in more danger. They are just too stupidly blind to realize it when they are doing it. It is true that when Al Jazeera publicizes the statements and actions of those of the Durbin ilk that the enemies of our soldiers are emboldened. That translates into more dead American sons and daughters. There can be no doubt whatsoever in anyone's mind about this. That does not mean that debate should be stifled. What that means is that debate is carried on in such a manner as to not give aid and comfort to our enemies. I don't think that Dick Durbin nor Harry Reid nor John Conyers nor John Kerry nor Teddy Kennedy are capable of such statesmanship. Small minds have little space for such, er, nuances. And make no mistake that there are not small minds on the other side of the aisle, also.

But have you noticed this? Mrs. Clinton does not get involved in these slash and burn tactics, unless the other side (in this case, Mr. Rove) serves her an opportunity on a silver platter. She learned long ago not to lead with her chin, as she did with the healthcare debacle. She is now a counterpuncher. That will have to change when she formally enters the race for the White House. But for now she is maintaining at least some sense of decorum. A pretty shrewd cookie, if you ask me, or even if you don't ask me.

But the big howler, so far, of the whole sordid affair is this statement from Sen. Schumer of New York:
"To inject politics into this and to defame a large number of people" is outrageous, he said. "It's not what New York and America is all about."
Now, if that is not one of the most disingenuous statements that I have heard in the past four years, I'll eat my Yankee hat (which, as bad as they are playing, I may do anyway). Injecting politics into "it" and defaming as large a swath of the opposition as possible with every statement made is exactly what New York and America is all about.


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Mark in Mexico's credibility goes to Hell

I received this comment during a heated exchange over what Texas governor Rick Perry did or did not say on camera.
Thanks, I have a life. You should learn to be honest once in a while. It could catch on with the Republi-vangelical crowd.

Your credibility ranks right down there with Satan, Bush, and Perry.

Xpatriated Texan | Homepage | 06.23.05 - 3:17 pm |
Satan? I think the Texas Baptists find him credible as, well, all hell. Maybe when Xpatriated expatriated himself, he left his mind behind.

Flag Burning Amendment

The House of Representatives approved the flag burning amendment yesterday. I don't really have too many strong feelings about this. It was probably just a little show of patriotism for the homefolks, although about 130 representatives declined the opportunity and voted "NAY." The exercise of burning a US flag in protest of...well...whatever is a favorite pastime of the fringes of political action.

Personally, I think that everytime a flag gets burnt and it is publicized, the extremists move a little further from their goal, whatever that might be. Americans don't like to see our flag desecrated and tend to turn away from those doing the desecrating. It might be best for the broad mainstream if the desecration was allowed to continue.

And it probably will be. As I understand it, the Senate vote will fall two votes shy of approval. Even if the Senate approves the measure, the individual states have to ratify it by, I believe, a two thirds majority. I think they have two years after the amendment's presentation to them to ratify or the amendment dies.

All in all, I don't think this is a hugely pressing issue of the day.

Linked to: No More Mister Nice Guy - Yeah, that cross burning thing crossed my mind, too (heh heh), Happy Furry Puppy etc., , Arthur Chrenkoff, Joe Gandelman, The All Spin Zone, Joust the Facts, UnCorrelated - with excellent punctuation, Common Sense Desk - clowns is a good description and not just on this issue, Centerfield, Damian Penny, Les Enfants Terrible, Politburo Diktat, Attaturk - attaboy, blow it up, don't just burn it, Seeing the Forest, Eschaton - with an interesting thought, Here's What's Left, News Hounds, cdr salamander, Rhetoric and Rythym, Unfogged, Now More Than Ever, Ravenswood Universe, Hoffmania, Scratchings, Liberty Street, The Captain, The Brainster, Right Wing Nut House, Thoughtsonline, Thought Mesh, Danny Carlton - with lots of fact and fiction, Of the Mind, The Fargus Report, LyfLines, Secure Liberty, Fraternitas Vitae, Combs Spouts Off, Baldilocks, No Pundit Intended, The Anchoress, Owlish Mutterings, Proud to Be Canadian, Trevor Bothwell, Whatever - with unofficial flag disply, Shot in the Dark, The Sideshow, Secular Blasphemy, Daly Thoughts, PoliBlogger, Balloon Juice - with some other general stupidity, Outside the Beltway, GOP and the City, INDC Journal, MiniPundit, Catch, The Finkfile, Scrutiny Hooligans, Cathouse Chat, Jason Buckley, Eponymous, Musafir's Musings, Wills4223, File It Under, The Boiling Point, Coyote's Blog, A Stitch In Haste, The Red Voice, The Phnom Pen,

Michael Jackson needs no more plastic surgery - lawyer

Actually, Michael Jackson has little to do with this story. In February, a woman was stopped at Logan International Airport in Boston when it was detected that her cups runneth over - with cash. $46,950 in cash, to be exact, stuffed in her bra. She was headed for Texas for, she claims, buttock and breast plastic surgery. Ileana Valdez filed suit against the DEA to recover the money and she says that an agent at the time told her she had a nice body and didn't need the surgery. She says she gained the money when she sold a business and two properties and had withdrawn it from the bank to protect it from creditors. And how does Michael Jackson enter this sordid tale?
"How can you make a determination that people don't need cosmetic surgery?" said Boston lawyer Tony V. Blaize, who filed the suit on behalf of Valdez. "I can't tell Michael Jackson he doesn't need more plastic surgery, even though I don't think he does."
That's how.

Jeralyn Merritt and Roger Ailes are liars.

I don't like the idea of attacking other bloggers personally. I may disagree with their positions but the attacks on a personal level are something that I try to avoid. However, these two bloggers, Merritt at TalkLeft and Aisles at Roger Aisles (not to be confused with the Roger Ailes who is chief of Fox News) are so boldfaced as to lie and then provide a link to a video which clearly exposes their fabrication.

Governor Rick Perry of Texas was being interviewed by conference call from a television studio. He got a little perturbed by a reporter's incessant questioning about an education program which the governor said would be announced on the following day. At the conclusion of the interview the governor thought the microphones were turned off. He repeated the last statement made by the reporter and then said, and I quote exactly, "Adios, Mofo." You may view the video at CrooksandLiars and see and hear it for yourself.

Here is what Merritt says:
On a related note, Gov. Perry sure stuck his foot in his mouth when a camera caught him calling a reporter a "motherf**ker" at the end of a interview session.
Here is what Ailes says:
Governor Goodhair Says "Adios, Motherfucker"
I copied and pasted both of the above excerpts directly from their respective blog postings including Aisles faulty punctuation.

Merritt provided the link to the video, while Aisles referenced Buzzflash. I went to Buzzflash and couldn't find any mention of the incident after a couple of minutes, which was all that I intended to invest in this silliness.

I may have opinions that differ sharply with another's or I may analyze some report differently than another's analysis or I may even make a mistake. But I do not and will not outright lie to my visitors. And then to provide a link to show my visitors that I am lying?

I posted a comment at Aisles blog suggesting that he view the video. I also tried to post a comment at TalkLeft but it will be screened and I don't imagine that we will see that one.

I think that both of those posts should either be edited or taken down.


Linked to: Get Your Blog Up, Reaching Out To Embrace..., Uncorrelated, Progress for Texas, Immigration Watchdog, Come and Take It, Lab Kat, Julien's List, Off the Kuff, Read Larry Powell, PinkDome, Xpatriated Texan,