The BuzzFlash Mailbag
July 24, 2002
Vacation Time! BuzzFlash Mailbag will be on hiatus from Monday, July 29, until Tuesday, August 6, 2002.
GOP sheepherders are getting their flock all in a tizzy because CitiGroup -- led by the brilliant Robert Rubin -- was involved in the Enron scandal. They think tying Rubin to Enron lets them implicate Clinton.
But a closer reading of the article indicates that the questionable loans (aka the "Roosevelt loans") were paid off and the transaction was complete by May, 1999.
Rubin took over at Citi in July, 1999. There's nothing so far to suggest that any evildoing was done after Rubin came on board. It seems as if the wrongdoers stopped their chicanery when they knew Rubin was in charge.
Only in GOP Fantasyland could Rubin be guilty for funny business that occurred before he even worked for the company, but Cheney is an honorable man because he can't be expected to know what's going on in the company he runs.
Subj: Our Home-Grown Fringe
Just finished reading "Don't Send in the Troops". "Our home-grown fringe" was mentioned -- those who see a conspiracy in every government word and deed.
I lived in the piney woods of East Texas for 20 years. A militia group trained on weekends just down the road from my house. I watched Ruby Ridge on tv; the soap opera I taped faithfully every day was supplanted by the sight of the Davidian's compound burning; I watched the aftermath of Oklahoma City on a television screen set up in the lobby of the bank where I worked as a teller. My point is that I listened to many of the people around me expressing great fear and suspicion of the government and all its agents -- wild theories and dire predictions about loss of rights and freedoms. I used to privately sneer and laugh at these members of "our homegrown fringe" even as I was forced to listen to their wild speculations that the Klintoons were going to turn us into Amerika.
Today, all those wild theories don't seem quite so funny and grotesque. The Bush administration seems bent on confirming all of those worst fears and suspicions.
I'm not sneering or laughing any more. Today, I'm part of that homegrown fringe' that is terrified of my own government, fearful of our leaders and suspicious of their motives.
A Faithful BuzzFlash Reader
Thanks for all of your efforts and excellent editorials.
As for this one...I am a retired AF MSgt with more than 21 years of active service to my country. I did not vote for Bush, either of them, or the idiot in the Florida Governor's mansion. I certainly am not surprised to read about this absolute travesty. Too bad that most vets will ignore this issue and continue to be bamboozled by the bushes. People need to wake up before the bushes permanently damage our country.
Thanks for listening.
Subj: FBI: Back to Its Bad Old Ways
What Doug Ireland and others have reported has come true: After 9/11 the FBI uses its newfound powers to spy on leftists under the guise of "fighting terrorism". Not that the outcome in the Judi Bari case meant anything.
The Bureau's latest ongoing target is Jennifer Harbury, the woman whose Guatemalan husband was murdered by a CIA-sponsored death squad.
To refresh your memory, the US gov't kept the murder of Harbury's husband secret until it was exposed in the mid-90's by then-Congressman Robert Torricelli.
I am a registered Independent in my state so I get all kinds of political information. Tonight, I received a very interesting "hi, we are thinking of you" editorial from the GOP. Quoting Matthew Dowd in Oct. 2001, "Mr. Bush's polls were "expected" to go down at this time. Mr. Roosevelt's polls dropped after Pearl Harbor in 46 weeks, Mr. Bush, after the Gulf War in 41 weeks, so it's been about 40 weeks since Sept. 11 and the poll drop was expected. We aren't worried about this drop, it means NOTHING."
I was wondering that if it means NOTHING, why write? As an Independent, I feel perfectly capable of grasping the shifting, changing political sands. It seems as if the GOP is worried that Republicans and anyone else who might plan to vote in the mid-term election aren't at the same intellectual level and simply wouldn't understand what this slip sliding into quicksand might really mean. I think they are concerned that in our ignorance we might think this was SOMETHING. We might think that 70% of the nation is awakening from their long winter nap, and beginning to see and understand what 30% of us have understood since 2000.
At any rate, the letter was soooooooo soothing, quite calm and lulling, it's as if they have to do something to keep the "Kids" asleep. But if you scratch and sniff the odor of fear comes right through. I thought it a very strange message and certainly shed light on the paranoia going on the in White House. Could it be that there is a dim bulb going off in their little circle or Karl Rove's head, that there are VOTERS out here. And those voters are taking polls, and they are beginning to be unhappy and could cause damage to that "foggy bottom" illusion they are living under. Just a thought.
Wouldn't you think that their first mass mailing to the "troops" in order to keep them in line, would be something about "taking control" of corruption and situations that threaten to destroy our economic system, not to mention the thousands left hanging out to dry. I would think that should be their first "don't worry, be happy" message.
I thought about writing and telling them that I'm not worried, I understand very well what those slipping polls mean. In fact, I remember Mr. Dowd's prediction and I've been counting off the weeks. Maybe that's too subtle a message for them.
Subj: Beware of Owen, and the pubbie, "sell committee."
There is a woman appearing before the Senate Judiciary committee named Owen. Ms. Owen is a staunch anti-abortionist, this appears to be essentially a single-issue with Ms. Owen, there is little else notable about her. Her sentiments brought her to the attention of Karl Rove, and later, then-Governor Bush.
Ms. Owen is POORLY qualified for a Federal Judgeship. Ms. Owen's record as a judge in Texas is dismal.
Yet, this single-issue crank stands before the Senate for confirmation to the Court of Appeals?! This is a travesty!
Ms. Owen is a political agenda tool. No more, and no less.
Also the Republicans are organizing another propaganda department, this on to sell judicial nominees.
I ask BuzzFlash to expose this Owen, once you do, you won't like what you'll see. I further ask that this Republican propaganda wing be exposed to ridicule and derision, as is befitting a propaganda machine.
Steve Ruffalo, Syracuse, N.Y.
You should check out a Frontline from about a year ago that had Owen defending the Stalinist idea that prisoners do not have to be released if they are exonerated by DNA. I found that even scarier than some of the stuff the committee asked about yesterday. The Frontline was about how mostly Southern states, mostly Texas, oppose using DNA to free innocent people and thereby make prosecutors and judges look bad.
Can you tell me how many jobs have been lost since the Shrub occupied the White House in January 2001? How many jobs have been created since he took office?
Gabriel C. Pena
[BuzzFlash Note: We contacted Challenger, Gray and Christmas, the outplacement firm associated with job loss calculations and projections, but haven't heard back from them. For a chart showing unemployment from 1989 to 2001, you can visit the BuzzFlash Perspectives page here: http://www.buzzflash.com/perspectives/2002/01/011002_Unemployment.html. At the bottom of the chart is a link to the U.S. Department of Labor, where you'll find plenty of information (although, we were unable to find an easily digestible table or report).]
It seems to me that Bush's desire to allow the Department of Homeland Security to transfer money internally is an attempt to get the legal authority to do what his father did illegally in the 80's (Iran-Contra).
I would just like to share an observation with you and your readers and ask if anyone else has noticed. SURELY I'm not the only one. Every time I see a photo of Dumbya, I look closely at his eyes. If the old saying..."the eyes are the window to the soul" is true...there's nothing there. His eyes have a blank, dull, clueless, empty stare............I'm scared. Thanks, BuzzFlash, for being there for us.
[BuzzFlash Note: There's also something strangely wooden and fake about the way he walks and stands. Apparently he works out a LOT, which might explain why his arms hang from his shoulders like a Stretch Armstrong doll.]
I figured out why Smirk is so strongly fighting the idea of Republican Congressmen Jeff Flake of Arizona. Jeff Flake proposes to allow Americans to visit Cuba. That measure is going to pass both the House and the Senate, but Smirk says he will veto it. That's because he needs to use the Miami anti-Castro group to help him steal the election again in 2004. He also needs them to help steal the election for Jebbie in 2002.
You thought Telemarketers are bad? How about Florida State Troopers? Imagine being late for a very important meeting and this happens... I'd be pissed!
A BuzzFlash Reader
It comes as no surprise that the IN-Justice department would ignore Armey's exclusion of the TIPS program in the Homeland Security bill. Ashcroft is going to do whatever the hell he wants, with the blessings of our un-elected president and his cronies. Well, one good thing that Ashcroft stands for is the right to own a gun under the second amendment. This way, I can shoot any spying son-of-a-bitch that comes near my home.
As I watch the stock market open on yet another downward spiral, I can't help but wonder when we will attack Iraq. An attack, and the false patriotism it will inspire, is the only way the Bush administration can save his presidency. Imagine that -- our sons and daughters coming home in body bags just to divert attention away from the real Bush sleaze. There are so many scandals to choose from. In no particular order:
1) Harken Energy - possible insider trading, possible ties to Khalid bin Mahfous (sp) the banker of terrorists, including Osama bin Laden.
2) Haliburton - Cheney was CEO when fraudulent accounting practices were adopted.
3) The election - Don't tell me to get over it. It was the worst affront to our freedom and the democratic process in the history of our country. Why did Katherine Harris dump the old company that provided voter lists for $5000 in favor of the new company that was paid $4 Million? Why were 57,000 voters disenfranchised? Why does no one give a damn?
4) September 11th - So many questions. Why were the investigations of field agents blocked? Why were members of the bin Laden family allowed to leave the country right after the attacks? Who put the "put" options on the two airlines? Why did Bush continue to read the story to children after he heard of the attacks? Why did Jeb Bush, Florida's governor, issue an order to put the National Guard on alert on September 7th?
5) The anthrax attacks - what is the status of the investigation?
6) The TIPS program - Isn't this America, not East Germany?
7) Ties to Enron and Kenny Boy Lay - Why is there NOT ONE CEO on trial? If Arthur Andersen was guilty concerning the Enron debacle, Ken Lay should be on trial. Thomas White, the other day in a Senate hearing just kept saying he was unaware of any wrongdoing while in charge of EES. Typical Bush dodge: "I was clueless."
When will the mainstream media wake up and start some serious investigating into all these scandals? They wasted no time diving into Bill Clinton's pants. Maybe it's a sex scandal they need. Ok, fine, here it is: George Bush is FUCKING 280 million people.
God forbid-- you and drudge are both linked to the san fran pot story! who thought we would see the day?
BuzzFlash is fantastic and informative and sometimes amusing. I am very disappointed with the disappearance of the capitol buzz (i work for a pub/pri on the hill, myself). Keep up the good fight...
Subj: Why are we not talking about it for real?
Every time I read a piece about ANYTHING having to do with Bush's past in business, be it Harken Oil, or the Texas Rangers and the jaw dropping accounts of the way that private land was acquired for the new stadium, people say that "if this was a democratic president, they would be drawing up impeachment papers right now." If that is true (and I believe it is no exaggeration to assume it is), then why is no one seriously considering that for our numbskull president Bush?
We have historical precedents set for what is and is not an impeachable offense and I'd say Bush qualifies for at least several of them at once! His treatment of the Bill of Rights and Constitution alone should be grounds for it. This is a president who campaigned from the middle and it was a big fat lie all along. Upon assuming the oval office he switched into high speed right-wing mode and has not looked back since.
The bottom line is this: he is not serving the country well, to be generous with my description of his performance, his administration is loaded with conflicts of interest, his own personal history is highly suspect and shrouded by HIS OWN executive orders to put his papers under lock and key!!! Himself and key members of his admin. were in really close and intimate contact with those who were CREATING the California energy crisis!!! Is it any wonder he would not lift a finger to help? Is this what we get from our leaders?
We deserve better, and we can have it if we demand it. It's time to remind our "public servants" what the word "public" means. The time has come for a serious debate about a movement to impeach this dangerous, and self serving man who is putting us all at risk, while he hides in OUR oval office and issues orders that are in complete opposition to the Constitution. We can surely do better than this. IMPEACH BUSH, HE HAS EARNED IT!!!!
Most Sincerely, An American Armed Services Veteran Who Feels He is Watching his Country Be Raped By This Most Un-American president.
otherwise noted, all original