January 5, 2004
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Subj: Mad CowIt all boils down to this:
Are you willing to risk the lives of your children on the basis that the Bush Administration is telling the truth?
Geoff in Austin
The body of a dead stowaway found in the wheel well of an airline flight from Jamaica to New York City found on Christmas day, followed by the discovery yesterday of the body of another stowaway on a flight from London to New York City has me wondering how long it will take for a terrorist to recognize this obvious lapse in security. No need for a suicide; just place a bomb in the wheel well. The Dept. of Homeland Security is ordering sky marshals on international flights into the U.S. - how about suggesting that they have someone just check inside the wheel wells. Two incidents in a single week does not instill a whole lot of confidence in any of the security measures being taken so far. Maybe the administration is hoping for something to happen so they can tighten the screws even tighter. Just wondering.
I read the beautiful piece of poetry written (NOT) by our Liar-in chief. I'm so inspired by great poets so I put together one of my own.
red, violets are blue
Hope you all had good holidays. Now the real fight begins.
Barbara in NYC
Subj: A view of the Kennedy comments on the 'leadership' of Tom Daschle
Perhaps the Buzz reader commentary suggestion that Daschle should step down and be replaced by Kennedy was reaching a bit too far, there is little indication that Kennedy would seek or desire to take on that position. Ii is 'nice' to read Kennedy's words of what seems like praise for the Daschle approach and his achievements.
But Kennedy is writing as an insider who rubs elbows with Daschle on perhaps a daily basis, they can share lunch and jokes and insider maneuverings and trappings of office. That may be 'nice' under ordinary circumstances. But, many of us do not see the last three years as ordinary. We expected more. More from our elected congress. Many of us did not accept the theft of the 2000 election and still do not. We did not accept the concept of the winner being called a 'sore looser' get over it.
Later many of us walked with our signs in Peace March after Peace March saying "NO to war in Iraq". We were, and are, appalled at the docile congress. Appalled for all the reasons well known and discussed, no need to make a list here-it would take pages. Appalled at being ignored. The congress of the past three years has been like weak handshake, afraid to do the job of an opposition-'they will call us names', they will call us unpatriotic and we will loose elections, boo hoo.
We expected more. We expected that legislation would be read before being voted on. We expected congress to hold to concept that there would be a 'proof' not a snow job by a proven narcissistic thief in chief driving pell mell to war. We expected Freedom to have a voice.
We expected more. We expected that the will of the people, being expressed in large unprecedented numbers, would be heard. All the response from the congress was a mix of silence and a limp '...if you knew what we knew'.
If congress knew what the Peace Marchers knew---a thing called Common sense. Perhaps then they would not have yielded to the narcissist who does not know the difference between bogus and real. The difference between the fact of WMD and the thought of - "What's the difference?" he asked. Simple, the difference is thousands and thousands of dead and injured, George.
Those of us not in the inner circle expect more, the Democratic congress has been tepid at best, incompetent at worst, Daschle has had some successes as Kennedy notes, but overall the team has been loosing. It is long past time to make some changes--start with the coach.
Subj: Happy Birthday to me! Happy New Year to Y'all!
Happy New Year to all of you in BuzzFlash-land!
Today (Jan.,1st) just happens to be my birthday....yes I'm a New Year's Baby.....and the gift that I most want this year is a NEW PRESIDENT!!! The current one is a fraud, an imposter, a semi-illiterate, a pampered loser, and possibly the next elected president of the USA!! Of course he doesn't have to become the next president, but he will if the Dems don't stop criticizing and putting each other down !! I DON'T give a damn about who the Democrats offer for the presidency. Like I have written before, I am for ABB (anybody but Bush)!!! The Republicans march lockstep for Bush/Cheney, while the Democrats are fighting each other. Don't they care that this country is decaying from the Bush/Cheney/Condi/Rove/Limbaugh/Faux News conglomerate?!
When I listen to some voters talk, they say that there is no difference between the Dems and the Repugs....THERE IS!! But with the bickering going on between Kerry/Lieberman/Gephardt, etc., it's hard to tell people that there is a real difference between the parties. If the aforementioned trio really care about America's future, they will shut the hell up and/or concentrate on letting the world know that Bush is bad for all of us.
Happy Birthday to me and Happy New Year ( I hope) to all of you.
Subj: Kennedy Commentary
Thanks for the Kennedy refutation of the articles criticizing Daschle. I could tell someone was overreacting, something that we need be very careful about in these troubled times. When things "turn around" for the Democratic Party, Mr. Daschle will have the advantageous moral position of "having taken the high road." People who have watched Congress in progress will realize that may sound like a little thing but in reality it provides plenty of political ammunition in future sessions.
Subj: Patrick Fitzgerald
I recently read some comments on this site bashing Patrick Fitzgerald, seemingly for no other reason than he's a government lawyer. However, myself an Illinois Democrat and fervent opponent of the Bush regime and John Ashcroft's ideas of what "justice" is, I think Pat Fitzgerald is willing to do what it takes to bring down whoever the real guilty ones are in the Plame case, no matter how high up they may be. (Rove? Cheney? McClellan? The list goes on and on...) I remember when Fitzgerald was appointed US Attorney for Illinois by Senator Peter Fitzgerald, a Republican (and not a bad one either...his voting record has been consistently more progressive and free thinking than his party peers) and no relation. The same cries were heard--"A New York fed lawyer? What can he do? Terrible choice, can't stop typical Illinois corruption, etc." Everyone was wrong. Pat Fitzgerald's investigation of Republican Governor George Ryan and his administration brought the whole corrupt organization crashing down. Among the casualties were top state GOP henchman Scott Fawell, and now, just announced by Fitzgerald, we have the indictment of former Governor Ryan himself. He's a FORMER Republican governor because the public was sick of the revelations brought by Fitzgerald's war on the license-for-bribes deals. Ryan and the next GOP gubernatorial nominee Jim Ryan are now out of business because of a man you imply is a John Ashcroft stooge. I don't think a stooge of the Republican Party would've destroyed the GOP in Illinois in 2002 like Fitzgerald's investigations have. I, like Chuck Schumer, was glad Fitzgerald's in the ring. If he's as dedicated, impartial, and committed to justice as his record has shown, this could be a knockout punch to the criminal(s) in the Bush administration who broke the law and outed a CIA agent. Here's to you, Pat!
A BuzzFlash Reader
Subj: Does it strike anyone as odd...
...that we know more about the origins, diet, disposition and dissemination of the downer cow than we do about a CIA leak in the White House?
Subj: Stop already!
As much as I like your country, please, for the love of god, stop selling weapons to everyone! Haven't you learn yet that what goes around, comes around?
Every country/ethnic group/fanatical lunatic fringe buys guns, etc. from you and then turns it upon you.
Sure, you may make millions of dollars initially, but then you spend billions defending yourselves against your own weapons.
Subj: INDEPENDENT, or BOUGHT AND PAID FOR????????
Subj: Greetings from Austria
Let's hope 2004 is better than 2003.
Here's what's the top New Year news overseas....Italy's dairy company Parmelat is being accused of thieving billions, and its CEOs have been doing the perp walk all day yesterday and today, as prosecutors round them up. Don't you wish the US had the same level of accountability as (ahem) Italy?
* * *
Happy New Year, BuzzFlash! Thanks for a wonderful job, and keep up the good work in the new year.
I liked all of Elaine's and will follow many of hers.
Here's my special one.
I am going to contribute every dollar I can to the Democratic presidential candidate. I am going to stop donating money to most other causes in order to have a substantial amount for my candidate because nothing is more important right now than getting Bush out of the White House.
That means no support to PBS (who wants to give a program to Tucker Carlson!!!!), to the library foundation, to museums, to Emily's List. I'll be cutting magazine subscriptions and donations to all medical causes. (I am reminded of my favorite quote from Ralph Nader: "A society that has more justice need less charity.")
I'll continue to donate to BuzzFlash and MoveOn.org. There is something exhilarating about donating to MoveOn. Your small contribution is pooled with thousands of others and overnight they've collected a couple of million which they immediately put it to some good use and they tell you about it immediately. Similarly, contributing to BuzzFlash keeps my only reliable news source coming.
A Reader in Santa Monica
Subj: America safe at last!
Well you'll be happy to know...the world is safe from my father! I took my 82 year old father to our small, little airport the other day. The wheelchair i'd asked to be at the front door wasn't there, so I had to go in search of a wheelchair or leave Dad at the curb. I finally got dad into a wheelchair, only to see an overzealous cop searching my van. As I deserted my father, I tried to explain to the cop that I needed to place my father into a wheelchair to keep him comfortable. The less-than-understanding cop barked at me to move my soccer-ball laden van. He did give me a twenty dollar ticket, which I am happy to pay because my state is bankrupt, thanks to mr. bush. The real indignity however was watching my father try as he may, remove his shoes, belt, jacket, etc from his wheelchair. I was helpless to do anything as I was on the other side of the gate. My father is a war hero from World War ll and Korea. I felt he deserved better than this. I felt, if only mr. bush had done his job on 9/11........My father would still have his dignity. If only mr. bush had done his job..........
A BuzzFlash Reader
Subj: Piestewa family rips Bush
WHOA! CHECK OUT THIS QUOTE FROM THE FAMILY OF THE LADY WHO WAS KILLED IN THE SAME FIREFIGHT THAT JENNIFER LYNCH WAS IN.
Re: Happy New Year from BuzzFlash.com!
HAPPY NEW YEAR to the BuzzFlash staff!!! I marvel at your dedication and I am so grateful for all your hard work that never lags, not even during the holidays. You seem to know that you are providing a vital service to those of us out here who despair at the continuing damage being done to our beloved country. I admit that I am not a fan of the right-wing style of ridiculing and poking fun at the villains because to me it is not even funny anymore; it's dire and joking about it makes me worry that it belittles the seriousness of our situation. I have a sense of humor but I save it for non-political subjects. I guess I am still smarting from 8 stinking years of Republican jokes about the Clintons. I don't like stooping to their level. I have learned SO MUCH from reading the Daily Top 5 BuzzFlash Headlines and gotten not only great information but a feeling that I'm not alone from the Mailbag which I read each time there is a new bunch.
I thank you from the bottom of my breaking heart. I hope I will find the strength and faith to believe we can still change the course of events that seem so inevitable. In the words of Winston Churchill, "Never, never, never quit."
Kathy from Pasadena, CA
Subj: "An abundance of caution"
Attorney General Ashcroft has worked hard to ensure that:
(1) A breech of national security by "senior administration officials" is being investigated by the same Justice Department "professionals" Republicans considered too incompetent to investigate a real estate deal during the last administration.
(2) Those under investigation had advanced notice of the Justice Department's initial request for documents.
(3) Those under investigation are allowed to determine what is "relevant" material to turn over to investigators.
(4) White House council is allowed to vet and redact any material determined to be relevant before transmittal to the Justice Department.
He NOW feels it is in the interests of impartiality (!) to recuse himself ("out of an abundance of caution"). If the special counsel concludes that the release of Mrs. Wilson's name was "the culmination of a series of unfortunate accidents and regrettable mis-steps by well-meaning public servants" (or something along those lines) and not a deliberate attempt to intimidate or discredit Mr. Wilson, how can Ashcroft's leaving now, after all he has done, in any way allay our suspicion that this was to be the conclusion from the start?
Albert Clark, NY
Subj: Bush's Hunt
Hey friends at Buzz…
They just showed a local picture of Bush on his "quail hunting" trip. Yeah, right. Those private ranches down near San Antonio and Corpus have lots more than quail. Everyone once in a while they’ve shown other "canned" hunts of more exotic animals such as tigers, old lions, etc. I am clearly not saying that is what he is doing, just that it is no secret in Texas about all the other animals there.
He is in Falfurrias, Texas at a private ranch. A quick Google search of the town with the word "hunting" after it brought up some interesting topics I thought you guys might want to link to.
Check out: http://www.wildlifesystems.com/exotics.htm. Then click on the link to "predator/Hog" and check out the pictures. I know from my brief time of living in San Antonio and traveling to south Texas there are places on the side of the road where you can buy baby tigers, for example. I even took some pictures about 9 years ago of some of these places. It is truly a very remote place, and convenient to talk about world issues away from reporters and all other listening devices.
Re: Happy New Year from BuzzFlash.com!
THANK YOU, BuzzFlash, for bringing us the truth every day. WE LOVE YOU!!!!!!!!!! Keep up the good work.
Subj: Vice President from Middle Earth
My new year's resolution: Unmask Dick Cheney. Let's attack him. He's obviously the Achilles's Heel of this administration.
Forget Bush. Run against Cheney and the irresponsible Republican Congress. Treat Bush as the dimwitted cousin every family has. Go after his handlers.
I'm looking forward to Howard Dean or anyone else in the race who is willing to take Princess Anne's attack dog and go for the jugular.
Happy New Year. Let the games begin.
[BuzzFlash Note: Until the Ents destroyed Eisengard, we thought it was the location of Cheney's secret bunker.]
Re: Happy New Year from BuzzFlash.com!
Happy New Year to all the staff at BuzzFlash! Thanks for doing a wonderful job. You are really appreciated. Let's hope for regime change in our country in 2004.
Wishing you and all your readers a great and peaceful 2004. In this year justice will prevail and we will bring our troops home and we shall not have the same administration after the elections. The justice be brought to all of us patriots who really love our great country and that those that have fleeced and harmed it will face justice before the year is over. That we see justice and peace around the world, which will recognize that America is not a bully or a thief, but only a few individuals that hijacked our country in Florida in 2000.
Peace and Justice for all - God Bless America
a very loyal reader
Subj: Eat Beef
In reality, he doesn't care because his brain is so wasted that BSE won't make that much difference anyway!
A BuzzFlash Reader
Subj: Sen Kennedy
I stand side by side on many things with Mr. Kennedy of Massachusetts, however his defense of Tom Daschle doesn't cut it. We need someone with fire in their eyes to stand up to Karl Rove and the Bushies. Daschle appears soft and mealy mouthed and at times appeasing to the Republicans, which makes someone like Howard Dean stand apart. Dean's loud and proud manner has attracted many supporters. Daschle appears so timid in comparison, it's amazing he was elected in the first place.
Subject: A truly Canadian Apology to the USA...
Courtesy of Rick Mercer from This Hour Has 22 Minutes CBC Television:
Subj: Recovery ..where?
The highly touted recovery of the US economy is ..where? It certainly isn't in mainstream America...
White collar workers are being displaced by the the thousands by lower wage scale countries such as India.
Lower wage jobs such as grocery clerks and fast food jobs are steadily being taken up by elder Americans who have to restart some sort of career or financial stop-gap when they discover their pensions disappeared in the latest stock market crash and Social Security is not taking up the difference.
We see all the safety net provisions being dismantled throughout the entire society and being justified by the premise that " If you cannot make it this capitalist society, there is something inherently wrong with you, and if you will simply embrace the conservative and religious belief system, your life will miraculously improve. If not, go to your nearest church to see if they will help you ( in exchange for your listening and possibly embracing their faith ) as it is no longer considered the government's job to protect it's financially challenged citizenry.
So, where is this recovery? Well they tell us that the economy jumped 8.2 % in the third quarter of 2003.
A couple of simple explanations could be in order.
What happened in the third quarter?... ( As we speak, the numbers are being re-calculated downward, but that's for another letter...)
Well, we had a war....resulting in massive military and pentagon spending that is not normal...we had massive civilian spending in the rebuilding of Iraq, the country we just bombed back into the 20th Century, as well as Afghanistan, which we bombed back into the 19th Century...
Then we have all the retail stores placing their Christmas orders in the third quarter for delivery in the fourth quarter...this results in a quick leap in durable goods purchasing....
Unfortunately those are both temporary and would not be considered as part of a permanent recovery unless it is sustainable into the long term...Continuous war anyone..???
What jobs does the Xmas rush bring?...a whole bunch of temporary, low paying jobs with no future and no benefits...
The headlines now are not recovery, but a "decline in the number of layoffs" Is that a positive statement of recovery...a decline in the number of unemployment filings..? Not in my book...
Also one needs to look at the actual number of people unemployed...Counting the number of new unemployment filings and the number of people who's benefits have expired, or who have accepted these temporary jobs, puts the number of unemployed or under-employed at 9.7%...
Also, when they talk of percentage recovery, all sorts of realities can be obscured. For instance, when the economy is distressed by three years of economic and job collapse, the relative percentage increase of even a small actual increase can seem dramatic, but it can easily obscure the reality. ( eg: an 8.2 % increase of 100 is 8.2: an 8.2% increase of 1000 is 82...same percentage increase but dramatically different reality - same percentage but actual difference is 1000%)
Also the administration is clouding all the reports by changing the rules constantly on how the calculations are done and what the baseline numbers are and also ignoring many facets of counting that used to be commonplace...
So, in my humble opinion, it's still then economy..stupid.
Geoff in Austin.
Regarding Senator Kennedy's December 31, 2003 endorsement of Tom Daschle as Democratic leader. I have sent the following to him.
Dear Senator Kennedy,
Regarding your comments in BuzzFlash about Tom Daschle remaining Senate leader.
By his own admission in his recent book, he says he has voted with George W. Bush 80% of the time.
If we do not have Democrats who represent us opposing the insane madness of Bush, then we have no representation. Democracy is lost. I expect Bush and his group of plundering thieves to behave as they do. I do not expect the leader of the Senate Democrats to go along.
Tag Along Tom Must Go.
Bill Du Bois
Subj: Old joke that applies to Bush
i saw a story on headline news about a guy who robbed a fast food place and dropped his job application. i think it might be interesting if someone did some follow up on that man, had he been looking for work? how long? what is his education? has he been getting unemployment? did it run out? was he turned down for food stamps or any help from the state? did he have children to feed? crime is up. are people committing crimes to survive?
da in miami
Surely I am not the only one to have noticed the "ho-hum" response of the national media to the appointment of a special prosecutor to investigate the "outing" if CIA operative Valerie Plame? Aren't these the same investigative bloodhounds who tracked down each and every last breathtaking, scintillating bit of gossip regarding the Monica Lewinsky affair, bursting it out in loud "breaking news" segments? Yet now, news about the special prosecutor appointment is merely dribbled out, almost as if it were an afterthought. The media just do not see this as much of a story -- notwithstanding the serious national security implications of the whole thing. Gee, silly little old me, here I sit, thinking to myself that gosh, this whole Valerie Plame issue seems like pretty big stuff. Oh well, I must be pretty naive, or else I just don't understand the value of "the real news", such as that involving Michael Jackson, Martha Stewart and Kobe Bryant.
Donald Russo, Bethlehem, Pa.
It appears that the shoe on the other foot is pinching.
Subj: My New Year's common sense attitude
I love you, BuzzFlash. Happy New Year. Well, I won't say whether I am a Clark supporter or a Dean supporter, so I will write their names in alphabetical order in this letter. Both Clark and Dean will have raised $30 million in one quarter together, I believe. I think our candidates need to strategize. The GOP strategizes all the time. That is why they have been winning. Well I am sick of the GOP. Now, If Clark and Dean care about America, as they say they do, they will do what is necessary to beat Bush. If each one cares only about himself and his goals, then they will not strategize to beat Bush. We are believers in our candidates, but in the end, actions will show how much each one of them or both of them really care about Americans today. Will they be thinking of their own goals and egos and leave us stranded at the hands of Bush, or will they strategize and beat the pants of him? We will one day know.
A BuzzFlash Fan
otherwise noted, all original