Saturday, December 25, 2004

Merry Christmas to All!

Merry Christmas and A "Cappy" New Year! Posted by Hello

Merry Christmas from Mr. Hanky and our own little "Cappy, dawun-eyed Wonderdog"!

Merry Christmas to All! Posted by Hello

damarvelous44magster and deuddersun would like to wish All a very Merry Christmas and a Happy, Healthy and prosperous New Year! (yeah, we're stoned...)

damagster & Cardboard Elvis Posted by Hello

damagster and Cardboard Elvis send all their best wishes to All of YOU!
(Didn't know Elvis was an Eagle Fan didja!)

Merry Christmas from Cardboard Elvis & deuddersun Posted by Hello

The above photo says it all! Oh yeah, Fuck Dallas! Go Eagles!

Merry Christmas!!!! Cya at the Superbowl!!!


Well, it's been quite a year. Scroff and I lost our mom. damagster lost her Dad. Bush got re-elected. On a positive note, I've met some really interesting folks. In the coming year I've decided to tone down the politics here and post stuff of a more personal nature. Work, for instance, or what else is going on in my little corner of the world. I'll save the political commentary for Any Which Way. Hey, I'm the Moderator for the Labor/Management Forums over there and it's high time I started to Moderate! (Moderate my ass! Everybody knows I'm rabidly pro-union, LOL!)

Anyway, thanks to all who stopped by here and brightened up our days with your thoughts, comments and love.

Best to All!


d. & damagster

Sunday, December 12, 2004

God, I miss Hockey!

We start 'em young in Philly! Posted by Hello

It's hockey season and I'm jonesing bad! LeClair, Gagne, Roenick, Primeau, Esche...Donald Brashear meting out punishment, Tony Amonte breaking for the net, sigh...

Thank God for the AHL and the Phantoms!


On The Other Hand...

Fly Eagles, Fly! Terrell Owens goes airborne to score!Posted by Hello

...there's the Philadelphia Eagles! God, I love Football! Especially when we win!


Wednesday, November 24, 2004

When Good Marines Go... Off?

Maybe It's Time To Change Policy... Posted by Hello

I found this posted at Any Which Way.

It's an "Open Letter" to the Marines of 3/1 from Kevin Sites, the embedded NBC newsman who videotaped the young Marine shooting a wounded insurgent in a mosque in Falluja.

It was a hard read. Almost from the start, I knew where it was going and I didn't like it. It reads true, however. I don't know Mr. Sites. In fact, prior to this, I had never heard anything of him. But his words ring true. Which leads me to believe that scroff was right - this guy just "lost it".

You can "lose it" in a heartbeat. You just DO something. Spontaneously. It's almost a knee-jerk reaction. You don't think, you just DO. You are not even totally aware of what you are doing. It just seems to happen. Then you are left with the consequences.

I had a buddy who was in the Army in Viet Nam. He shot a kid. No-one knows how old this kid was, but he was young, maybe 7 or 8 years old. He ran up to my bud and his squad like many kids did, "Hey! G.I.! You got sop-sop?*" I don't know what my buddy saw, but something wasn't right. He shot the kid and the fucking kid blew up! The force of the blast knocked them all on their asses. They all survived, but "Freddy", (not his real name), hasn't been "right" since.

I don't know what happened in that mosque. I don't know if this Marine made a split second choice that broke the wrong way, or, if he did, in fact, "lose it".

You will have to make up your own minds. Personally, if this is an accurate account of what happened, (and I imagine it is - Sites will surely be relentlessly interviewed by C.I.D.**), then I guess it may be time for an un-official "policy change".

I do know that he shouldn't have to face a Court Martial.

If he was wrong he'll live with that for the rest of his life.

In my mind, that's punishment enough.


For my non-military readers:
*sop-sop - chocolate from C-Rats, cigarettes, food, basiclally, anything you were willing to give them.
**C.I.D. - Criminal Investigation Division

Friday, November 19, 2004

When "Good" Marines Go "Bad"

It's Who We Are... It's What We Do. Posted by Hello

(What I am about to write may come as a surprize to many of you. Yes. I am a Liberal and I am probably going to take some heat for this from my Liberal friends and readers. No, I do not support George Bush or his decision to invade Iraq. But...I am also a realist. I realize that we are in Iraq. We cannot just "pull out". Even John Kerry recognized the need to stabilize Iraq and see this through. There is, at this point, no other course. Those of us who opposed the War must, therefore, separate the Warrior from the War.)

Much has been made lately of the shooting of a wounded enemy in Iraq by a United States Marine, (World - AP, U.S. to Probe Shooting of Wounded Iraqi) .

For the life of me, I just don't get it. Killing the enemy is our job. It's who we's what we do. It's what we are trained and ingrained to do from Day One. From the moment the new recruits line up on the famous yellow footprints at Parris Island or at MCRD San Diego, every waking moment is spent molding those recruits into the finest, most efficient killing machines on the planet. In order to achieve this remarkable transition, recruits are stripped of their individual personalities - a vacuum is created and then filled in again. Recruits are trained to be void of emotion, to neither love nor hate the enemy, but rather, to regard the enemy as a target, only a target. When a Marine switches into "Combat Mode" only Death will keep him from eliminating his enemy.

As Marion Sturkey relates in his excellent book, "Warrior Culture of the U.S. Marines":

"Why are U.S. Marines considered the world's premier warriors? Why? What puts the Marine Corps above the rest? Other military services have rigorous training and weapons of equal or greater lethality. So, why do U.S. Marines stand head and shoulders above the crowd?

The truth lies in the individual Marine. He (or she) did not join the Marines. Roughly 40,000 try each year. Those who survive the crucible of Marine basic training have been sculpted in mind and body. They have become Marines."

But do we actually feel anger, fear? Ofcourse. Hatred? Maybe. Love? Definately. Love of our families, our Corps, our country and always our Brothers and Sisters. It is the love that motivates us to become Marines and to remain Marines forever. It is only when that switch is thrown that emotions leave and training takes over.

So what does all this have to do with killing a wounded enemy?

Everything. Consider the fact that the enemy has brought this treatment on himself! In the fighting leading up to this incident Marines had been killed and injured by enemy troops faking wounds and surrender, only to turn at the last moment and open fire on unsuspecting Marines. Enemy bodies have been booby-trapped to explode when examined. In short, Marines in Falluja were left with no other option than to take aggressive action in their own defense! As a salty old Lt. Colonel once told me, "Son. Let the other guy die for his country. We need you alive to fight again."

And what are we fighting for? Or rather, what are they fighting for? Really? The answer is simple to those of us who know. Each other. That's it. You are fighting for the guy next to you. All the patriotic hoopla and grand ideals go out the window in a firefight. It breaks down to survival, to making sure it's the "other guy" who dies. If that means shooting an enemy who "appears" to be wounded, so be it.

Below is a letter from a Marine who fought in Falluja. It was posted on Newsmax and I found it via Mike The Marine. (Yeah, Newsmax is a Right-leaning News Service, that doesn't detract from the impact of the letter!)

Letter From a Fallujah Marine:

This is one story of many that people normally don't hear, and one that everyone does. This is one most don't hear:

A young Marine and his cover man cautiously enter a room just recently filled with insurgents armed with AK-47's and RPG's. There are three dead, another wailing in pain. The insurgent can be heard saying, "Mister, mister! Diktoor, diktoor (doctor)!"

He is badly wounded, lying in a pool of his own blood. The Marine and his cover man slowly walk toward the injured man, scanning to make sure no enemies come from behind. In a split second, the pressure in the room greatly exceeds that of the outside, and the concussion seems to be felt before the blast is heard. Marines outside rush to the room, and look in horror as the dust gradually settles.

The result is a room filled with the barely recognizable remains of the deceased, caused by an insurgent setting off several pounds of explosives.

The Marines' remains are gathered by teary-eyed comrades, brothers in arms, and shipped home in a box. The families can only mourn over a casket and a picture of their loved one, a life cut short by someone who hid behind a white flag.

But no one hears these stories, except those who have lived to carry remains of a friend, and the families who loved the dead. No one hears this, so no one cares.

This is the story everyone hears:

A young Marine and his fire team cautiously enter a room just recently filled with insurgents armed with AK-47's and RPG's. There are three dead, another wailing in pain. The insurgent can be heard saying, "Mister, mister! Diktoor, diktoor (doctor)!" He is badly wounded.

Suddenly, he pulls from under his bloody clothes a grenade, without the pin. The explosion rocks the room, killing one Marine, wounding the others. The young Marine catches shrapnel in the face.

The next day, same Marine, same type of situation, a different story. The young Marine and his cover man enter a room with two wounded insurgents. One lies on the floor in a puddle of blood, another against the wall. A reporter and his camera survey the wreckage inside, and in the background can be heard the voice of a Marine, "He's moving, he's moving!"

The pop of a rifle is heard, and the insurgent against the wall is now dead. Minutes, hours later, the scene is aired on national television, and the Marine is being held for committing a war crime. Unlawful killing.

And now, another Marine has the possibility of being burned at the stake for protecting the life of his brethren. His family now wrings their hands in grief, tears streaming down their face. Brother, should I have been in your boots, I too would have done the same.

For those of you who don't know, we Marines, Band of Brothers, Jarheads, Leathernecks, etc., do not fight because we think it is right, or think it is wrong. We are here for the man to our left, and the man to our right. We choose to give our lives so that the man or woman next to us can go home and see their husbands, wives, children, friends and families.

For those of you who sit on your couches in front of your television, and choose to condemn this man's actions, I have but one thing to say to you. Get out of your recliner, lace up my boots, pick up a rifle, leave your family behind and join me. See what I've seen, walk where I have walked. To those of you who support us, my sincerest gratitude. You keep us alive.

I am a Marine currently doing his second tour in Iraq. These are my opinions and mine alone. They do not represent those of the Marine Corps or of the US military, or any other.

During the last Presidential Campaign, much was made of John Kerry killing a VC who was aiming an RPG at Kerry's swift boat. Many said that the VC was wounded, many said he wasn't. It didn't matter one way or the other to me or most of us who supported John Kerry.. What mattered was that there was one less VC to kill Americans. And this situation is no different.

Was this action honorable? I think so. And it was definately necessary, if for no other reason than to send a message to the enemy that this ruse won't work anymore. We will not take chances anymore.

Honor is also ingrained in Marines. To quote from Sturkey's book again:

"Once he has earned the title and entered the Brotherhood of Marines, a new warrior must draw upon the legacy of his Corps. Therein lies his strength. In return, the strength of the Corps lies in the individual Marine. The character (often defined as "what you are in the dark") of these warriors is defined by the three constant Corps Values: honor, courage, and commitment.

Honor: Honor requires each Marine to exemplify the ultimate standard in ethical and moral conduct. Honor is many things; honor requires many things. A U.S. Marine must never lie, never cheat, never steal, but that is not enough. Much more is required. Each Marine must cling to an uncompromising code of personal integrity, accountable for his actions and holding others accountable for theirs. And, above all, honor mandates that a Marine never sully the reputation of his Corps.

Courage: Simply stated, courage is honor in action -- and more. Courage is moral strength, the will to heed the inner voice of conscience, the will to do what is right regardless of the conduct of others. It is mental discipline, an adherence to a higher standard. Courage means willingness to take a stand for what is right in spite of adverse consequences. This courage, throughout the history of the Corps, has sustained Marines during the chaos, perils, and hardships of combat. And each day, it enables each Marine to look in the mirror -- and smile.

Commitment: Total dedication to Corps and Country. Gung-ho Marine teamwork. All for one, one for all. By whatever name or cliche, commitment is a combination of (1) selfless determination and (2) a relentless dedication to excellence. Marines never give up, never give in, never willingly accept second best. Excellence is always the goal. And, when their active duty days are over, Marines remain reserve Marines, retired Marines, or Marine veterans. There is no such thing as an ex-Marine or former-Marine. Once a Marine, always a Marine. Commitment never dies.

The three Corps Values: honor, courage, commitment. They make up the bedrock of the character of each individual Marine. They are the foundation of his Corps. These three values, handed down from generation to generation, have made U.S. Marines the Warrior Elite. The U.S. Marine Corps: the most respected and revered fighting force on earth."

Many will argue that the actions of this Marine were neither Honorable or Courageous. I beg to differ. He had the courage and honor to do what he felt he had to do to protect himself and his Brothers from the enemy. He had the commitment to follow through on his training and eliminate the enemy.

Consider what every Marine is taught, what every Marine believes in:



This is my rifle.

There are many like it, but this one is mine.

My rifle is my best friend. It is my life. I must master it as I must master my life.

My rifle without me is useless. Without my rifle, I am useless.

I must fire my rifle true. I must shoot straighter than my enemy who is trying to kill me. I must shoot him before he shoots me.

I will...

My rifle and myself know that what counts in war is not the rounds we fire, the noise of our bursts, nor the smoke we make. We know it is the hits that count.

We will hit...

My rifle is human, even as I, because it is my life. Thus, I will learn it as a brother. I will learn its weaknesses, its strengths, its parts, its accessories, its sights, and its barrel. I will ever guard it against the ravages of weather and damage. I will keep my rifle clean and ready, even as I am clean and ready. We will become part of each other.

We will...

Before God I swear this creed. My rifle and myself are the defenders of my country. We are the masters of our enemy. We are the saviors of my life. So be it, until there is no enemy,

but PEACE!

When you breed and train an attack dog you can't be upset when he bites.

Marines are America's attack dogs and we will bite!

After all...

An Eye For An Eye, Make 'Em Die Posted by Hello

It's who We are...It's what We do.

Saepius Exertus, Semper Fidelis, Frater Infinitas
(Often Tested, Always Faithful, Brothers Forever)


Post Script:


A high school senior in Ohio, Adrienne, got an English class assignment. She had to research and write a thesis. And, she could pick her topic.

Adrienne dipped back into our Nation's history. She reached back to a time before she was born, back to a time of national turmoil, back to the time of the war in Vietnam. Today, that long-ago conflict is a mere footnote in her history books. Who fought? Why? Who survived? Who died? Who were the heroes?

From her Nation's long struggle during the war in Vietnam, Adrienne picked her topic: WHO ARE THE HEROES?

An exhaustive search began. As part of her research, young Adrienne posted a notice on the web-site of the USMC Vietnam Helicopter Association. For the Marine Corps helicopter crews who flew and fought in Vietnam, she asked: "Who are the heroes?"

The many responses included an e-mail reply from Marion Sturkey, a Marine Corps helicopter pilot in Vietnam. He wrote not of glory and valor. He never mentioned anything he did, or tried to do. Instead, he wrote of basic human virtues: commitment, loyalty, brotherly love, and a cause greater than self. His reply to a young American schoolgirl is quoted below, verbatim:


March 6, 2001


I understand you are researching a project about heroism during the war in Vietnam. I commend you for the extent of your research.

"Who are the heroes?" you ask. I had the privilege of knowing many heroes during my time in Vietnam in 1966-1967. But, I doubt they are the type of men you would recognize as such. They were simply common men. Actually, "boys" would be more accurate with regard to many of them. They were not the "Follow Me!" type you may have seen in the movies. I have never heard any of them call themselves brave, although I witnessed what you would call bravery on a daily basis.

So, who are the heroes? They were the men (or "boys," many just a year or so older than yourself) who believed in each other, who relied on each other, and who sacrificed for each other. They were bound together by simple loyalty to their fellow Marines, their friends. They shared an unspoken trust and responsibility. Each knew that no matter how grave his peril, his friends would try to save him. They might fail and lose their own lives in the attempt. But, we all knew that they would try. We each had the same obligation. When one of our friends was in peril, we had to try, despite the danger. We had no choice. That was the pact we made. That was our code.

Heroes were soft-spoken men like Jim McKay, a helicopter gunner. Jim had survived his scheduled time in combat and was scheduled to fly home on the night of August 8, 1966. But, that night he learned that four of his friends were cut off, surrounded, fighting for their lives in the dark. Jim refused to leave Vietnam. He volunteered to fly on a rescue mission. His helicopter was shot down.

Heroes were men like Joe Roman, a helicopter pilot. On January 26, 1967, he answered the plea for help from Marines trapped on a ridge in Laos. They warned him of the danger, but he disregarded the warning and flew down to attempt a rescue. He, too, got shot down. Wounded in the head and buttocks, he survived. But, he never talked about it afterwards. When questioned, he would shrug and say that it was "nothing anyone else wouldn't do." He was right. Incidentally, Joe died last year. I attended his internment in Arlington National Cemetery.

There were thousands of such heroes. I am honored to have had the privilege to have served with them. Simply stated, they believed in a cause greater than themselves. They believed in each other. They knew the danger, but they also knew their responsibility and their code. They shared a brotherly love that no earthly circumstance can shatter. They, along with the 58,000-plus names on The Wall in Washington, DC, are true heroes.

The heroes who survived are now in their fifties or sixties. You know them as fathers, uncles, neighbors, maybe teachers. They have jobs and families. They pay taxes and make our society function. They don't label themselves as heroes. Yet, they are American Patriots in every sense of the words. And, deep down inside, they still maintain that undying brotherly love for the men with whom they served in Vietnam, thirty years or so ago. Without question, they are your heroes.

I hope the foregoing will be of assistance to you.

Warmest regards,

Marion Sturkey

Warrior Culture of the U.S. Marines

by Marion Sturkey

These "new" Marines fighting in Iraq are no different. Gotta go now, I have to dry my eyes.


Thursday, November 18, 2004

Up Next!


deuddersun says what he thinks about Marines who kill wounded enemies!

No news story re-posts, just deuddersun's opinion!

Stay Tuned!!!


I had this post written and ready to post when my fuckin' machine crashed and I lost it all. So be patient, it's coming and it's worth it, (well, at least I think so and since it's my blog that's the way it is!).

I know, this sounds like "the dog ate my homework", but c'mon, folks, it's 9:30 Saturday night, I got a hot blonde waitng and a heavy bet on Sugar Shane Mosley in the fight tonight (HBO, 9:45 est.). Cut me a huss, willya? It'll be up tomorrow, I promise Teacher!

In the meantime, since it is Saturday night, I hope all of you are curled up with the one you love enjoying each other.

Nothing could be finer...

Pax Tibi,


Kinder? Gentler? Less funny. More sad.

Republi-cons? Posted by Hello

A week ago I posted "Fuck The South".

While I agree with the sentiments expressed there-in completely, I realize that it may, (ahem) have been "offensive " to some of you.

I am, therefore, posting a piece I found at Any Which Way which also sums up my feeling - just not quite as brutally.

As you read this, understand what this woman is saying. I know how she feels - I feel it everyday. Whenever I enter the Lincoln, Holland or Queens-Midtown Tunnels, (which is damn near every day I work!), I always wonder if today will be the day. Lord knows if I wanted to hurt the US I would blow the tunnels leading into and out of Manhatten! Anyone who has ever been there can tell you of their strategic importance.

So tell me "Middle America", what is it that you are so afraid of?


From scroff at Any Which Way Forums:

"Here's another I found over at Patridiot Watch. While it's not as sarcastic as the first, nor as vitriolic as the second, it has just as much punch, maybe more. I don't know who wrote it or where it came from, but it says it all too well... " - scroff

----------------------------------------------------A LETTER TO THE RED STATES

Sorry, I try not to deluge people with my ramblings. But I had to write this and, having written it, had to send it. Even though I don't know anyone I can send it to (without alienating my Republican in-laws, who are the only "middle country" people I know.)

I am writing this letter to the people in the red states in the middle of the country -- the people who voted for George W. Bush. I am writing this letter because I don't think we know each other.

So I'll make an introduction. I am a New Yorker who voted for John Kerry. I used to live in California, and if I still lived there, I would vote for Kerry. I used to live in Washington, DC, and if I still lived there, I would vote for Kerry. Kerry won in all three of those regions.

Maybe you want to know more about me. Or maybe not; maybe you think you know me already. You think I am some anti-American anarchist because I dislike George W. Bush. You think that I am immoral and anti-family, because I support women's reproductive freedom and gay rights. You think that I am dangerous, and even evil, because I do not abide by your religious beliefs.

Maybe you are content to think that, to write me off as a "liberal" -- the dreaded "L" word -- and rejoice that your candidate has triumphed over evil, immoral, anti-American, anti-family people like me. But maybe you are still curious. So here goes: this is who I am.

I am a New Yorker. I was here, in my apartment downtown, on September 11th. I watched the Towers burn from the roof of my building. I went inside so that I couldn't see them when they fell. I had friends who were inside. I have a friend who still has nightmares about watching people jump and fall from the Towers. He will never be the same. How many people like him do you know? People that can't sit in a restaurant without plotting an escape route, in case it blows up?

I am a worker. I work across the street from the Citigroup Center, which the government told us is a "target" of terrorism. Later, we found out they were relaying very old information, but it was already too late. They had given me bad dreams again. The subway stop near my office was crowded with bomb-sniffing dogs, policemen in heavy protective gear, soldiers. Now, every time I enter or exit my office, all of my possessions are X-rayed to make sure I don't have any weapons. How often are you stopped by a soldier with a bomb-sniffing dog outside your office?

I am a neighbor. I have a neighbor who is a 9/11 widow. She has two children. My husband does odd jobs for her now, like building bookshelves. Things her husband should do. He uses her husband's tools, and the two little girls tell him, "Those are our daddy's tools." How many 9/11 widows and orphans do you know? How often do you fill in for their dead loved ones?

I am a taxpayer. I worked my butt off to get where I did, and so did my parents. My parents saved and borrowed and sent me to college. I worked my way through graduate school. I won a full tuition scholarship to law school. All for the privilege of working 2,600 hours last year. That works out to a 50 hour week, every week, without any vacation days at all. I get to work by 9 am and rarely leave before 9 pm. I eat dinner at my office much more often than I eat dinner at home. My husband and I paid over $70,000 in federal income tax last year. At some point in the future, we will have to pay much more -- once this country faces its deficit and the impossible burden of Social Security. In fact, the areas of the country that supported Kerry -- New York, California, Illinois, Massachusetts -- they are the financial centers of the nation. They are the tax base of this country. How much did you pay, Kansas? How much did you contribute to this government you support, Alabama? How much of this war in Iraq did you pay for?

I am a liberal. The funny part is, liberals have this reputation for living in Never-Neverland, being idealists, not being sensible. But let me tell you how I see the world: I see America as one nation in a world of nations. Therefore, I think we should try to get along with other nations. I see that gay people exist. Therefore, I think they should be allowed to exist, and be treated the same as other people. I see ways in which women are not allowed to control their own bodies. Therefore, I think we should give women more control over their bodies. I see that people have awful diseases. Therefore, I think we should enable scientists to try to cure them. I see that we have a Constitution. Therefore, I think it should be upheld. I see that there were no weapons of mass destruction in Iraq. Therefore, I think that Iraq was not an imminent danger to me. It seems so pragmatic to me. How do you see the world? Do you really think voting against gay marriage will keep people from being gay? Would you really prefer that people continue to die from Parkinson's disease? Do you really not care about the Constitutional rights of political detainees? Would you really have supported the war if you knew the truth, or would you have wanted to spend more of our money on health care, job training, terrorism preparedness?

I am an American. I have an American flag flying outside my home. I love my home more than anything. I love that I grew up right outside New York City. I first went to the Statue of Liberty with my 5th grade class, and my mom and dad took me to the Empire State Building when I was 8. I love taking the subway to Yankee Stadium. I loved living in Washington DC and going on dates to the Lincoln Memorial. It is because I love this country so much that I argue with my political opponents as much I do.

I am not safe. I never feel safe. My in-laws live in a small town in Ohio, and that town has received more federal funding, per capita, for terrorism preparedness than New York City has. I take subways and buses every day. I work in a skyscraper across the street from a "target." I have emergency supplies and a spare pair of sneakers in my desk, in case somethng happens while I'm at work. Do you? How many times a month do you worry that your subway is going to blow up? When you hear sirens on the street, do you run to the window to make sure everything is okay? When you hear an airplane, do you flinch? Do you dread beautiful, blue-skied September days? I don't know a single New Yorker who doesn't spend the month of September on tip-toes, superstitiously praying for rain so we don't have to relive that beautiful, blue-skied day.

I am lonely. I feel that we, as a nation, have alienated all our friends and further provoked our enemies. I feel unprotected. Most of all I feel alienated from my fellow citizens, because I don't understand what you are thinking. You voted for a man who started a war in Iraq for no reason, against the wishes of the entire world. You voted for a man whose lack of foresight and inability to plan has led to massive insurgencies in Iraq, where weapons are disappearing into the hands of terrorists. You voted for a man who let Osama Bin Laden escape into the hills of Afghanistan so that he could start that war in Iraq. You voted for a man who doesn't want to let people love who they want to love; doesn't want to let doctors cure their patients; doesn't want to let women rule their destinies. I don't understand why you voted for this man. For me, it is not enough that he is personable; it is not enough that he seems like one of the guys. Why did you vote for him? Why did you elect a man that lied to us in order to convince us to go to war? (Ten years ago you were incensed when our president lied about his sex life; you thought it was an impeachable offense.) Why did you elect a leader who thinks that strength cannot include diplomacy or international cooperation? Why did you elect a man who did nothing except run away and hide on September 11?

Most of all, I am terrified. I mean daily, I am afraid that I will not survive this. I am afraid that I will lose my husband, that I will never have children, that I will never grow old and watch the sunset in a backyard of my own. I am afraid that my career -- which should end with a triumphant and good-natured roast at a retirement party in 2035 -- will be cut short by an attack on me and my colleagues, as we sit sending emails and making phone calls one ordinary afternoon. Is your life at stake? Are you terrified?

I don't think you are. I don't think you realize what you have done. And if anything happens to me or the people I love, I blame you. I wanted you to know that.

Thanks for the post, scroff. I wish I knew who this lady was so I could tell her I understand.


Pics Are Up!

Cookies! 2004! Posted by Hello

(A proud Marine in Evening Dress! Ever seen a finer looking unifrom? Didn't think so. Thanks Sarge!)


The Pics from Cookies 2004 are almost all up and some even have the correct caption! For those of you who just can't wait for my tired old ass to finish, go to Happy Birthday To The Corps, click on the picture of the fine Marine above and you're there! (Thanks to scroff and Ruthie at Any Which Way for hosting the pics in their Gallery!)

Hope you have as much fun looking at the pics as I had being there taking them, but I doubt it!

Next year, getcher ass in gear!

Cya at Cookies! November 10, 2005!

Semper Fidelis!


Thursday, November 11, 2004

Today, Veteran's Day, A Gentle Reminder...

Remember Those That Gave All Posted by Hello
(Image Courtesy of Doug Kidd )

Happy Birthday Marines!

229 Years of Service With Honor! Posted by Hello
(Image courtesy of Doug Kidd )

A Message From The Commandant Of The Marine Corps
(pdf warning)

Last night I attended the 229th Marine Corps Birthday Bash at Cookie's Tavern at 10th & Oregon Streets in Philadelphia. I had intended to meet some buddies earlier in the day, however, those plans were shelved due to an emergency at work. Every year I swear that I will not allow anything to interfere with the Birthday and yesterday was no exception. Until I recieved numerous messages from the Union Hall that a certain employer was in a tight jam due to a "shoot schedule revision" and was asking for me by name. The Union Rep told me this individual had said to him, "If anybody can get this done in time, it's that Old Jarhead!" How could I refuse?

Let me say that this individual is a great guy and has hired me frequently. He respects my abilities and opinions and is a pleasure to work for. There was no way I could refuse, and so to New York I went. Needless to say, I finished the job way ahead of schedule, was given permission to leave early, was paid for the entire 10 hours (with the last two hours at time and a half), and was booked again for Friday and Monday, and still made the party by 1900 hours!

The down side was, I couldn't find my buds! Yet as I surveyed the throngs outside Cookies, faces young and old, I realized that my "buds", no, my Brothers and Sisters were all there. More and more younger Vets are turning up. Vets of the current War in Iraq. Young, cocky, carefree, confident. Marines. And as I looked upon their young faces, flushed from the chilly evening air, I was struck by their eyes. I found myself looking into the same eyes I see in the mirror every morning. They may be young, but they are Men and Women of Steel. They will do whatever needs to be done. They are Marines.

Women Warriors - Roses & Daggers! Posted by Hello
(Image courtesy of Doug Kidd )

And so to All Marines, of All Ages:

Happy Birthday Brothers & Sisters!

Semper Fidelis!


(Photos will be posted at Any Which Way shortly)

Sunday, November 07, 2004

Another Quiz...

You are the Black Knight. Always lookin' for a fight, you NEVER know when to quit...even when you've had your arms & legs cut off..

You are the Black Knight. Always lookin' for a
fight, you NEVER know when to quit...even when
you've had your arms & legs cut off.."'Tis
but a scratch!"

Which Monty Python & the Holy Grail Character are you REALLY?
brought to you by Quizilla

(Stolen from Mad Mikey!)


And I Looked, And Behold A Pale Horse...

Prepare To Meet Allah For We Are Coming... Posted by Hello

And I looked, and behold a pale horse: and his name that sat on him was Death, and Hell followed with him. And power was given unto them over the fourth part of the earth, to kill with sword, and with hunger, and with death, and with the beasts of the earth.

Revelation 6:8

Whether or not you agreed with the decision to invade Iraq, the simple fact is that we are there. Our fine young men and women have been cast into the fight of their lives. I am compelled by my conscience and my love of Corps and Country to support them in any way possible.

As they prepare to assault Falluja, my hope and prayers go with them. My only regret is that I cannot go with them.

Go then, Marines! In the Highest Traditions of our Beloved Corps, Bring unto them the death and destruction they have sought by turning away from Peace! Fight like the Devil Dogs you are! Fear not death, for in the immortal words of R. Lee Ermey,

"You may die, but the Marine Corps will live forever! Therefore, YOU will live forever!"

Commanders Give Marines Pep Talk in Iraq

Semper Fidelis.

Hell is coming to Falluja.


Thursday, November 04, 2004

One Last Shot...

(Thanks to By Beauty Damned for the Photo) Posted by Hello

One final shot before I drop the whole election thing and get on with life. I just thought these two items summed up how I feel better than most. The above picture, which I found on By Beauty Damned, and the following piece, posted by Ruthie, which I found in the Forum at Any Which Way.

Most of you know Ruthie and scroff from Any Which Way. Hey, scroff's mebrudder, Ruthie's his Lady, it's family. If you don't know them, look them up, click on the link, great stuff going on over there.

I came across Maria recently, via Mad Mikey. I've been meaning to link to her for some time now but my schedule has been so brutal I barely had time to post. Anyway, she's a real Hellcat and a great read. Check her out.

And now, on to my final post (hopefully) on the 2004 Presidential Election, courtesy of Ruthie from Any Which Way!

Thursday, November 04 2004 @ 08:06 PM EST

I thought this was pretty good...ruthie

A Letter to Incredulous Friends Around the World
November 3, 2004

Dear friends:

I'm sorry. I really am.

I know it must be impossible for you to understand the choice the American public made on November 2.

It's almost impossible for me, too, and I've lived here all 46 years of my life.

Why would Americans choose, by a margin of more than 3,500,000 votes, to return George W. Bush to office after all that he's done?

After he pulled out of the Kyoto Accords?

After he trashed the ABM Treaty?

After he ignored more than 40 warnings about the looming danger of an attack by Osama bin Laden?

After he failed to capture bin Laden?

After he circulated false information about Saddam Hussein's weapons of mass destruction and Saddam's alleged links to bin Laden?

After he bullied the United Nations with slurs of irrelevancy?

After he violated the U.N. Charter by launching the Iraq War?

After he bungled the occupation of Iraq and dishonored America with the Abu Ghraib scandal?

After he promised billions of dollars to fight AIDS overseas and chose to fight condom use instead?

After the ranks of the uninsured at home rose to 45 million?

After he sided with the interests of huge corporations every step of the way?

After he was the first President to lose jobs in 70 years?

And after he redistributed wealth-to the top 1 percent of Americans?

Let me try to offer you an explanation, and then, perhaps, a ray or two of hope.

First, some brutal honesty: A large chunk of the public here doesn't give a damn about what anyone else around the world thinks about the United States. In fact, for many people here, it is a point of pride to ignore the wishes of the rest of the world. Bush played on this nativism by saying, "We don't need a permission slip from anyone" before defending the United States. In the post-9/11 era, this pitch was an especially effective one.

Deep in the psyche of the American mind is the myth of exceptionalism: that we, somehow, are the greatest country on Earth, a shining beacon on a hill, placed here by God himself. This is the American superiority complex, a profound affliction that distorts our perceptions and enables manipulative Presidents to give the marching orders.

Bush himself suffers from an aggravated case of this superiority complex. In fact, he has elevated it to national policy, a policy I call messianic militarism. He actually believes that God has placed him in the Oval Office. And he believes, as he put it earlier this year, "God is speaking through me." God evidently speaks the language of war.

An illustration: According to the Israeli newspaper Haaretz, Bush told Palestinian negotiators, in that fleeting moment when he decided to involve himself in their issue, that God had told him to go to war against Afghanistan, and God had told him to go to war against Saddam Hussein, and now God was telling him to make peace between Israel and Palestine. (God must subsequently have told him to forget about it, because that's what Bush did.)

Another illustration: In his 2004 State of the Union address and in his acceptance speech at the Republican Convention, Bush used variations of the line: "We are delivering the gift of freedom to the people of Iraq. But it is not America's gift. It is the gift of God Almighty." Bush is delivering that gift by the bomb load right now.

Yet his invocation of the Almighty falls on receptive ears in the United States, one of the most fundamentalist countries in the world, as Noam Chomsky has noted. About 90 percent of the American public believe in God, and about 40 percent identify themselves as born-again Christian. Three quarters of the born-again Christians tend to vote Republican. This is Bush's base, and he and his political adviser, Karl Rove, did everything they could to expand that base and bring it to the polls on November 2.

That is why, in one of the debates, Bush signaled that he would appoint anti-abortion justices to the Supreme Court. That is why he came out for a constitutional amendment banning gay marriage, and why Rove engineered referendums in eleven states on the issue. In each state, the referendum banning same-sex marriage won by a lopsided margin.

These issues are a great distraction from the everyday concerns of working people. But it was magic for Bush, persuading people to vote against their material interests. In Ohio, Bush prevailed in the county with the greatest unemployment, even though his policies helped to create that unemployment. He was the boss who threw the workers onto the street, but the workers voted for him anyway. Their unemployment represents the revenge of empire upon its own citizens, but they saluted the emperor nonetheless.

The churches played a huge role in driving their followers to the polls. Never in modern American history have the churches intervened so blatantly in an election.

When people weren't getting the message in church, they were fed it intravenously by Rupert Murdoch's Fox TV and talk radio. This diet of misinformation was not good for the brain: A majority of Bush supporters said they still felt the war against Iraq was part of the war on terror, even after all the evidence showing no link between bin Laden and Saddam Hussein.

This is the geography of Bush's victory.

But despite all that, Bush won by only a small margin, with 55 million Americans voting to turn him out.

55 million Americans said no to the Iraq War.

55 million Americans said no to Abu Ghraib.

55 million Americans said no to Halliburton.

55 million Americans said yes to working with the rest of the world.

We are with you in your concern for human rights.

We are with you in your concern for the environment.

We are with you in opposing the Iraq War.

We are with you in abiding by the U.N. Charter.

And people here on the progressive side are trying to translate these commitments into power. The broadly defined liberal and leftwing community in America was more impassioned, more determined, more organized, and more united than I've ever seen it before. People here know the stakes. And as citizens of the empire, almost all progressives felt an obligation to consider the harm that Bush was doing to you, the victims and subjects of the empire, and so they redoubled their efforts.

It was not enough, not this time.

But the coalition of forces-unionists, civil rights groups, environmentalists, activists of all stripes, from the old school and from the Internet-will not disintegrate. It will continue to cohere.

And there's another good sign: The alternative media here is stronger than ever before, with "Democracy Now" and "Air America" reaching tens of millions of Americans on the airwaves.

Plus, we can now exchange our messages on and buzzflash and Truthout and MoveOn, thus giving us the capacity not only to communicate but organize instantaneously.

Media activism is also at an all time high, with a new mass movement tugging at the trunks of the conglomerates.

And a cultural insurrection is under way: from Michael Moore and John Sayles to Bruce Springsteen and Eminem and Margaret Cho and Jon Stewart.

We are finally getting our act together over here. We are finally getting our message out. And there is a seriousness of purpose, an urgency to regain power, that is amazing to behold.

No one is rolling over dead.

Like the Red Scare of the 1920s, like the McCarthy period of the 1950s, like the Nixon years and the Reagan years, this too will pass.

And so there will come a day when you and I alike can once again recite the line from Neruda, "America, I do not call your name without hope."

In peace and solidarity,

Matthew Rothschild
The Progressive magazine
Madison, Wisconsin

Wednesday, November 03, 2004

It's Over...For Now...

Thanks For a Hell of A Ride, Guys... Posted by Hello

Well, America has made Her choice. Now Americans will have to live with it. Frankly, the Right beat us at our own game, quietly organizing voters and building a grass-roots "get-out-the-vote machine" from Day One. There are many lessons here for those of us on the Left to learn if we ever again want to have any significant say in the way our country is run.

To begin with, the Right always knew who their candidate would be. That is an advantage of being an incumbent with a Second Term up for grabs. As such, they were able to focus on getting their candidate re-elected from the beginning of the First Term. The Left, on the other hand, had to wade through countless primary candidates all attacking each other while the Right continued to quietly out- organize the "ultimate organizers" on the Left: Unions and Grass Roots Groups such as MoveOn and ACT.

Seems the Right learned a thing or two somewhere along the way. They aren't as stupid as we thought. At least their leaders aren't.

Their leaders have lied to the American Public all along. On Iraq. On tax Cuts. On "No Child Left Behind". On Overtime pay. On "Weapons Of Mass Destruction". On Abu Gharib. On paying for the war with Iraqi oil money. On the Coalition of The Willing. On the environment. On countless issues.

On Tuesday, November 2, 2004, the Majority of American Voters bought their lies, lock, stock and barrell.

Why? Because the Republican leadership was able to convince voters that these lies were either insignificant in the overall scheme of things or were actually true. So it wasn't the Leadership of the Right that was Stupid, it was the millions of mindless minions who bought the sound bytes. Any one of whom will tell you that "Kerry was a Flip-flopper". (It means something here to note that the three areas of the United States that have actually been attacked by terrorists, Pennsylvania, New York and Washington, D.C., all went for John Kerry!)

And that's where we failed. We failed to recognize that their Leaders were smart enough to start their 2004 campaign the day after Bush was sworn in in 2000 and that most Americans were either too stupid or too lazy to look "behind the curtain" and see the Truth.

That Right Wing Mis-information Machine is still there and still hard at work. There has been some speculation as to who will head the Republican ticket in 2008 since it is unlikely Cheney will run due to age and health concerns.

I already know.


Possibly paired with Colin Powell. But definately Jeb. Why not? He has the same qualifications his brother had four years ago, and he's a Bush. The dynasty will continue. Who else can the Neo-cons trust with their "Project For The New American Century"?

What I don't know and need to know NOW, is who we will be running.

There's a lot of hard work to do and we need to start as soon as possible.


Sunday, October 31, 2004

It's Our Country, Dammit! Let's Take It Back!

Like Father Like Son... One Term And Done! Posted by Hello

Brothers & Sisters,

Is this what we really want? Four more years of lies, deceit, incompetence and bold, unabashed arrogance?

Bush talks to God. And God answers back. Not in the usual way. Not in the way most of us receive guidance from the Lord, but directly. According to Pat Robertson, God told Bush that there would be no casualties in Iraq. Who was wrong, God or Bush? Now Robertson predicts a Bush landslide victory. According to God, Bush will sweep the election. Funny, I didn't know God was a Republican.

Apparently neither does Usama Bin Laden. Bin Laden thinks God is a Muslim. Bin Laden believes that God will punish us for aiding the Jews in 1982 in Lebanaon. The Jews also think God is on their side. Not Jesus, who according to the Jews was a Rabbi went wrong, but Yahweh, the only true God, who will lead the "Chosen" to the "Promised Land". Which brings me to another point: let's do away with "dual citizenship". Either you are a Loyal American or you aren't, okay? I don't want the considerations of any other country influencing the politics of my country, and neither should you!

I think God should be left out of this. If anything, God has got to be shaking His/Her Almighty Head at the chaos being done in His/Her Name. Fact is, God doesn't take sides, folks. That's the point of "Free Will". He left us to sort it all out for ourselves, a kind of test, to see who was worthy and who was not. Anyone who claims to have God on their side, therefore, is full of shit.

So let's leave God out of the equation. Granted He's watching. He may even be keeping score. But by His own Words, He's a non-participant.

So, what does that leave us with?

A liar. A man. Only a man, who knew there were no Weapons of Mass Destruction in Iraq but who persued this current fiasco anyway. A man who had no real plan other than to kill or capture Saddam Hussein for the political capital it would gain him. A man who succumbed to the greedy ambitions of others as evidenced by the fact that our troops secured only the oil fileds in our blitzkreig across Iraq, letting museums, National Treasures and Real Munition dumps stand unguarded, hence the missing 380 tons of high explosives Bush and his cronies would have you believe were gone before we got there. What did Rumsfeld say when the pictures appeared on your TV of looters raping the Iraqi people of their history and dignity? "That's what Freedom is, some folks are going to loot." Or some such nonsense. Bullshit.

Bush lied and thousands died. For nothing. This war was supposed to be about 9/11. Bush and his cronies have morphed that into "we freed the Iraqi people". Ask any ordinary Iraqi how he likes his new "freedom". So far the only "freedom" the average Iraqi has experienced is Freedom from electrical service, clean water, ample food, jobs and a hell of a lot more "security" than he has now! This war was supposed to be about Usama Bin Laden and preventing the kind of catastrophe that occurred on 9/11. A catastrophe that we are now learning could have been prevented had Bush and his Neo-con advisors listened to the evidence presented to them by the Clinton Administration. ( And Bush says, "I don't think about Bin Laden very much. He's not a priority.")

Oh, wait. Clinton got his dick sucked by an intern! Forget about the Budget Surplus. Forget about stopping the Millenium Plot. Forget about winning in Kosovo without losing one American life. Clinton got his dick sucked! Baaaaaaaaaad man! Clinton lied ! (What married man wouldn't?) Isn't that something that should have been left to Bill and Hillary to sort out? What business was it of anybody-else to "investigate" it at the cost of millions of taxpayer dollars? If we spent as much time and money investigating Halliburton half of the Bush Administration would probably be brought up on criminal charges.

And that's what really scares them. If they lose and the Democrats take over there will be Hell to pay. A lot of folks may end up in prison. They need to win by any means possible to clean up their mess and destroy the evidence of their crimes. But, then, if they win, we will be on a road that will negate any possibility of that ever happening.

Aside from all of this, their assault on the average American has been decimating. They will boldly stand in front of a TV camera and swear that they are for the Middle Class while at the same time they abolish overtime pay, give no-bid contracts to drug companies, raise the cost of Medicare the day after they finish their Convention, give Corporations another large tax break only days ago, reward companies for off--shoring work - all the while smiling at you and telling you how much better things are!

They will stop at nothing to win. Even John McCain called their tatics dishonorable. He should know, he was a victim of the Bush Machine himself. They will crow that John Kerry only served four months in Viet Nam and earned three Purple Hearts, a Bronze Star and a Silver Star. They will say this is laughable in such a short period of time. What they will not say is how much time they spent in Viet Nam. I would like to ask these Chickenhawks how much time in combat is required to earn their undeserving respect. Jerry McGuire was "in-country" six weeks when a sniper shot him in the head. Try telling his family he was a poser and a fake.

They will tell you they are for "Family Values", yet seek a Constitutional Amendment to prevent Gay Marriage. (If you don't like the idea of Gay Marriage- don't marry one!) They will howl like hyenas' if someone mentions Dick Cheney's Gay daughter while protesting that being Gay is nothing to be ashamed of, (provided the friggin' queers don't seek the same protections offerred straight couples!).

They will tell you to "support our troops" while they close VA Hospials and cutback combat pay and send troops into combat ill-equipped and insufficiently trained. They will promise you they will not re-institute the draft while they employ a "back-door draft" by executing "stop-loss" orders and ignoring the completion of contractual obligations by those serving. Where, prey tell, will they get the man-power to replace the troops currently in action? Recruiters haven't been exactly overwhelmed by new recruits anxious to sign up for duty in Iraq in spite of the many loud mouthed Protest Warriors who claim to be serving their country here at home, (read "safe". Isn't it so much easier to stay here and run your mouth while others do your fighting and dying for you?) At one point we had 500,000 troops in Viet Nam fighting the same kind of war with what results? Bush would have you believe we can achieve success with the same 138,000 who were part of the initial invasion!

They will tell you that John Kerry and the "Liberals" in Congress are weak on Defense while it was their Guru, Ronald Ray-gun, who denied the United States Marine Corps a chance to even the score with Islamo-terrorists after the bombing of the Marine Barracks in Beirut kelled 243 United States Marines by pulling them out immediately and five days later sending them off to invade Grenada, a "real" threat to the security of the United States.

They will tell you that they are strong on "Homeland Security" yet 98% of all containers entering our ports are uninspected and could easily house terrorist weapons. Our chemical and nuclear plants remain easily accesible and our airlines constantly load uninspected, un-exrayed luggage into the bellies of the planes we fly on. Illegal immigrants flood across our borders daily, some 3,000,000 a year! - who's to say at least some of them aren't coming here to do us ill? Do you feel more secure?

They will tell you that abortion is wrong and immoral yet how many of these righteous, Right Wing Men have ever been pregnant?

This Tuesday I am going to ask you to look at the facts. The real facts. Look in your hearts. Ask yourselves, "Can we really afford four more years of regression, oppression, and suppression of reality? Are we really better off now than we were four years ago?

Do we really have anything to lose by giving John Kerry a chance to restore this great Republic to it's former glory?

Vote on November 2, 2004. Vote your conscience. Vote for John Kerry and John Edwards.

Good night.


For The Eight...

Always Faithfull Posted by Hello

Go now, and take your places at the Table of Warriors with the Blessings of The All Father, Odin, One-eye, for you have, by your blood and steel, earned nothing less than Eternal Honor amongst the Heroes of Valhalla.


The Final Inspection

The Marine stood and faced his God
Which must always come to pass.
He hoped his shoes were shining
Just as brightly as his brass.

Step forward now, O' Devil-Dog,
How shall I deal with you?
Have you always turned the other cheek?
To My Church have you been true?

The Marine squared his shoulders,
said, No, Lord, I guess I ain't,
Because those of us who carry guns
Can't always be a saint.

I've had to work most Sundays
And at times my talk was tough,
And sometimes I've been violent,
Because the world is awfully rough.

But, I never took a penny
That wasn't mine to keep...
Though I worked a lot of overtime
When the bills got just too steep.

And I never passed a cry for help,
Though at times I shook with fear,
And sometimes, God forgive me,
I've wept unmanly tears.

I know I don't deserve a place
Among the people here,
They never wanted me around
Except to calm their fear.

If you've a place for me here, Lord,
It needn't be so grand,
I never expected or had too much,
But if you don't, I'll understand.

There was a silence 'round the throne
Where saints had often trod
As the Marine awaited quietly,
The judgment of his God,

Step forward now, My Fine Marine,
You've borne your burdens well,
Walk your post on Heaven's streets,
You've served your time in hell.

Saepius Exertus, Semper Fidelis, Frater Infinitas

Saturday, October 30, 2004

White House Of Horrors!

Lizards Of Oz Posted by Hello

(Once again, thanks to Ruthie at Any Which Way! If you haven't already, check them out for a good dose of Common Sense and Lefty Humor!)

White House of Horrors

Dick Cheney peaked too soon. We've still got a few days left until Halloween.

It was scary enough when we thought the vice president had created his own reality for spin purposes. But if he actually believes that Iraq is "a remarkable success story,'' it's downright spooky. He's already got his persona for Sunday: he's the mad scientist in the haunted mansion, fiddling with test tubes to force the world to conform to his twisted vision.

After 9/11, Mr. Cheney swirled his big black cape and hunkered down in his undisclosed dungeon, reading books about smallpox and plague and worst-case terrorist scenarios. His ghoulish imagination ran wild, and he dragged the untested president and jittery country into his house of horrors, painting a gory picture of how Iraq could let fearsome munitions fall into the hands of evildoers.

He yanked America into war to preclude that chilling bloodbath. But in a spine-tingling switch, the administration's misbegotten invasion of Iraq has let fearsome munitions fall into the hands of evildoers. It's also forged the links between Al Qaeda and the Sunni Baathists that Mr. Cheney and his crazy-eyed Igors at the Pentagon had fantasized about to justify their hunger to remake the Middle East.

It's often seen in scary movies: you play God to create something in your own image, and the monster you make ends up coming after you.

Determined to throw a good scare into the Arab world, the vice president ended up scaring up the swarm of jihadist evil spirits he had conjured, like the overreaching sorcerer in "Fantasia." The Pentagon bungled the occupation so badly, it caused the insurgency to grow like the Blob.

Just as Catherine Deneuve had bizarre hallucinations in the horror classic "Repulsion,'' Mr. Cheney and the neocons were in a deranged ideological psychosis, obsessing about imaginary weapons while allowing enemies to spirit the real ones away.

The officials charged with protecting us set off so many false alarms that they ignored all the real ones.

President Bush is like one of the blissfully ignorant teenagers in "Friday the 13th'' movies, spouting slogans like "Freedom is on the march'' while Freddy Krueger is in the closet, ready to claw his skin off.

Mr. Bush ignored his own experts' warnings that Osama bin Laden planned to attack inside the U.S., that an invasion of Iraq could create a toxic partnership between outside terrorists and Baathists and create sympathy for them across the Islamic world, that Donald Rumsfeld was planning a war and occupation without enough troops, that Saddam's aluminum tubes were not for nuclear purposes, that U.S. troops should safeguard 380 tons of sealed explosives that could bring down planes and buildings, and that, after the invasion, Iraq could erupt into civil war.

And, of course, the president ignored Colin Powell's Pottery Barn warning: if you break it, you own it.

Their Iraqi puppet, Ayad Allawi, turned on Mr. Cheney and Mr. Bush this week, in a scene right out of "Chucky.'' Mr. Allawi accused coalition forces of "major negligence'' for not protecting the unarmed Iraqi National Guard trainees who were slaughtered by insurgents wearing Iraqi police uniforms. Iraqi recruits are getting killed so fast we can't even pretend that we're going to turn the country over to them.

If you really want to be chilled to the bone this Halloween, listen to what Peter W. Galbraith, a former diplomat who helped advance the case for an Iraq invasion at the request of Paul Wolfowitz, said in a column yesterday in The Boston Globe.

He said he'd told Mr. Wolfowitz about "the catastrophic aftermath of the invasion, the unchecked looting of every public institution in Baghdad, the devastation of Iraq's cultural heritage, the anger of ordinary Iraqis who couldn't understand why the world's only superpower was letting this happen.'' He told Mr. Wolfowitz that mobs were looting Iraqi labs of live H.I.V. and black fever viruses and making off with barrels of yellowcake.

"Even after my briefing, the Pentagon leaders did nothing to safeguard Iraq's nuclear sites,'' he said.

In his column, Mr. Galbraith said weapons looted from the arms site called Al Qaqaa might have wound up in Iran, which could obviously use them to pursue nuclear weapons.

In April 2003 in Baghdad, he said, he told a young U.S. lieutenant stationed across the street that H.I.V. and black fever viruses had just been looted. The soldier had been devastated and said, "I hope I'm not responsible for Armageddon.''

Too bad that never occurred to Dr. Cheneystein.

NY Times

Happy Halloween!

Vote Kerry-Edwards and the Entire Democrat Ticket on November 2nd! It's time to send the Lizards Of Oz packing!


Monday, October 25, 2004

Thoose Damned Liberals...

(Thanks to Ruthie at Any Which Way)

Sunday, October 24 2004 @ 12:54 AM EDT

Contributed by: Ruthie

I recieved this in an email from my mother tonight. It was so good that I felt it was front page material.



Joe gets up at 6 a.m. and fills his coffeepot with water for his morning coffee. The water is clean and good because some tree-hugging commie liberal fought for minimum water-quality standards.

With his first swallow of coffee, Joe takes his daily medications. His medications are safe to take because some evil lefty bomb-throwers fought to insure their safety and that they work as advertised. All but $10 of Joe's medications are paid for by his employer's medical plan because some fire-breathing lazy union workers fought their employers for paid medical insurance - now Joe gets it too. Never would he turn it down.

He prepares his morning breakfast, bacon and eggs. Joe's bacon is safe to eat because some girly-man liberal fought for laws to regulate the meat packing industry.

In his morning shower, Joe reaches for his shampoo! His bottle is properly labeled with each ingredient and its amount in the total contents because some crybaby liberal fought for his right to know what he was putting on his body and how much it contained.

Joe dresses, walks outside and takes a deep breath. The air he breathes is healthy because some environmentalist wacko troublemaking militant fought for laws to stop industries from polluting our air.

Then Joe walks to the subway station for his government-subsidized ride to work. It saves him considerable money in parking and transportation fees because some fancy-pants limp-wristed freethinking idiot fought for affordable public transportation, which gives everyone the opportunity to be a contributor.

Joe begins his work day. He has a good job with excellent pay, medical benefits, retirement, paid holidays and vacation because some fire-breathing Viet Cong-loving union members fought and died for these working standards. Joe's employer pays these high standards because Joe's employer doesn't want his employees to call the union in. So Joe benefits from what others have gained.

If Joe is hurt on the job or becomes unemployed, he'll get a workers
compensation or unemployment check because some stupid pinko troublemakers didn't think Joe should lose his home because of a temporary misfortune.

At noontime Joe needs to make a bank deposit so he can pay some bills. Joe's deposit is federally insured by the FSLIC because some godless liberal red wanted to protect Joe's money from unscrupulous bankers who ruined the banking system before the Great Depression. He can thank that Stalinist Franklin D. Roosevelt for that.

Joe has to pay his Fannie Mae-underwritten mortgage and his below-market federal student loan because some elitist pointy-headed liberal decided that Joe and the whole society would be better off if he was educated and earned more money over his lifetime. That's okay, but the bastards tricked him because he has to pay taxes. Bush will fix that, he tells himself.

Joe gets home from work. He plans to visit his father this evening at his farm home in the country. He gets in his car for the drive. His car is among the safest in the world because some America-hating liberal fought for car safety standards.

He arrives at his boyhood home. His was the third generation to live in the house financed by Farmers' Home Administration because bankers didn't want to make rural loans. The house didn't have electricity until some big-government New Deal Stalinist liberal stuck his nose where it didn't belong and demanded rural electrification.

Joe is happy to see his father, who is now retired. His father lives on Social Security and a union pension because some wine-drinking, cheese-eating Marxist made sure he could take care of himself so Joe wouldn't have to.

Joe gets back in his car for the ride home, and turns on a radio talk show. The radio host keeps saying that liberals are bad and conservatives are good. He doesn't mention that over the decades the beloved Republicans have fought to defeat every protection and benefit Joe enjoys throughout his day.

Joe agrees with the talk-radio loudmouth: We don't need those big-government liberals ruining our lives! After all, I'm a self-made man and a good Republican and I believe all Americans should take care of themselves, just like I have!

Thanks again Ruthie! If this doesn't say it I dson't know what does!


Sunday, October 24, 2004

From Ruthie, With Love...

Signs? Posted by Hello



by Barbie McGee

Okay, I’ll tell you what I really think: people who are planning to vote for George W. Bush are stupid. I’m sorry to have to say that, but it’s true. If you’re voting for Bush and are not stupid, feel free to write and prove to me that you are actually quite intelligent. (I reserve the right to quote from your letter in future articles.)

But frankly, if you are reading this, you are probably not voting Republican—which, in my opinion, means you’re smart. Yes, you, and I are smart—but what’s with all those dingbats out there who are planning to vote for Bush? Do they not realize that someone who utters the ridiculous crap that pours from his mouth1 is not just inarticulate or shy, but a moron? You or I may be capable of the odd infelicitous phrase, but we don’t go around spouting such an array of nonsense that entire books can be published of our "isms."

I admit, Bush is probably capable of the kind of management that a particularly adept frat boy might be good at—getting the best price on a keg, pulling off the meanest pranks, etc.—and he’s a pretty good liar. But it is clear to anyone who saw him in the debates that he always says the same thing over and over, like a Stepford Wife, and it had clearly been fed to him by someone else, perhaps through an earpiece. He has always refused to have press conferences, and why? Because he is just, excuse me, too damn dumb to conduct them without making an ass of himself. Maybe I could not hold a press conference without a gaffe here or there myself. But I did not volunteer to be leader of the free world. He did. Why? Probably because he was trying to outdo his father, or his brother, or he figured being president was a lot like being elected to student government in high school—it meant you were popular. All I know is that if you want someone to do the most important job in the entire world—the job with the most riding on it, the job that has the most potential impact on the course of contemporary history—you should try to find someone with credentials and brains.

If you’re smart.

Stupid people don’t like to be lectured to by people who know what they’re talking about, like Al Gore in the 2000 debates. I admit, I found Gore’s petulant sighing a bit off-putting (though why was his mic turned way up?)—but I didn’t blame him. Can you imagine the humiliation of having been Vice President for eight years, a senator before that, and then having to engage with a bozo like Bush in a discussion of world affairs? It would be like trying to talk about Kant with your four-year-old nephew; you’d sigh, too.

But stupid people resent those smarty-pants types who know everything. "He thinks he invented the Internet," the stupid people guffawed about Gore.

This summer, the Stupids were up in arms because in their opinion—which was fed to them by Bush’s PR factory—John Kerry did not deserve all the medals he won. Even if this were true, wasn’t it unfair to subject Kerry to questions about his medals when Bush scammed his way in and out of the National Guard so as not to have to go to Vietnam at all? (But supported the war.) It’s undeniable that Kerry volunteered to go to Vietnam, and that his opposition to the war when he returned was based on his acquaintance with the facts about what was going on there. If we are using fair criteria—which no one ever is these days—we would have to conclude that based on what we know to be true, Kerry showed courage both in going to war and in opposing it, and Bush was a big chickenhawk.

Stupid people will believe anything about Kerry if they’re told to because the plain fact is, they don’t like him. Why? Because he’s well-educated, well-spoken, and well-informed. Whereas Bush is well-heeled, well-oiled, and well-packaged. And stupid. You could go have a beer with him, or maybe six. Why? Because he’s just plain folks. That is to say, stupid.

I’m not saying I’d want to have dinner with John Kerry. I find his Brahmin manner a bit difficult, and if he had asked my advice before running for president, I would have suggested he go to the same elocution coach who taught Bush to talk like a Texan. But I’m not voting for someone I want to have dinner with, or even a snack: I’m voting for someone who will not lead us into war with Iran, who will not appoint Supreme Court justices that will set the legislative clock back a hundred years, and who will not use terrorism as an excuse to abrogate our remaining civil liberties. I am looking for a president, not a pal, and, while I’m at it, for liberty and justice for all, not a bunch of twisted rhetoric fashioned by crypto-fascist elves and then piped into George W. Bush’s stupid ear.

Is Kerry going to haul us out of the political, fiscal, and ethical mess we’re in? I don’t know if anyone can. But if I had to put my money on who would be most likely to send us all straight to hell, I would put it on Bush. And not just Bush himself—who is probably too stupid to destroy the world on purpose, just by accident—but on his evil henchpeople who, unlike him, know exactly what they’re about. They are not stupid—they are evil.

You could argue that it is worse to be evil than to be stupid, but I think it is worse to be stupid. Intelligence—and education (which the Bush administration very sensibly works to destroy)—are the enemies of evil. If we understand that something called a "Clear Skies Initiative" will result in more pollution—if we know that calling something "Operation Iraqi Freedom" will not in itself provide freedom for Iraqis—if, in short, we are Smart, then evil cannot thrive in our midst; we will root it out, vote against it, laugh at it and send it packing.

But if Americans are stupid—and according to the recent polls that place Bush slightly ahead of Kerry, most of us are—we are easy prey of whatever Karl Rove-like creatures crawl from under rocks to manipulate us. When the Bush administration announces a terror alert to chase something they don’t want us to know off the front page, the Stupid fall for it. If you’re stupid, well, you’re basically a sucker.

So is John Kerry the greatest candidate ever to press the public’s flesh? Perhaps not—though we have no way of knowing, since most of the media are biased not toward the left, as is sometimes alleged, or even toward the right, but toward the Stupid, who would rather talk about Botox than budgets. My suspicion is that if he wins, he will turn out to be a fine president; he’s fair and decent, and most important, he thinks—though the Stupid call that "flip-flopping." (For a good look at a real flip-flopper, compare Bush’s 2000 campaign promises to what he’s actually done.)

So I’m voting for Kerry. And so should you. Why? Because we’re smart..


Barbie McGee is married to protest singer Yikes McGee.

1"Tribal sovereignty means that, it's sovereign. You're a—you've been given sovereignty, and you're viewed as a sovereign entity. And, therefore, the relationship between the federal government and tribes is one between sovereign entities."—Washington, D.C., Aug. 6, 2004. From Slate

Thanks Ruthie.