1. Sunday, October 2, 2005

    An Incredibly Dark Week for The Republicans 

    aka Why the Instapundit is Pork Obsessed, and Why the Rest Want to Focus on Bill Bennett

    9/25 Tens of Thousands Protest Iraq War, Only Hundreds Support It

    WASHINGTON – Support for U.S. troops fighting abroad mixed with anger toward anti-war demonstrators at home as hundreds of people, far fewer than organizers had expected, rallied Sunday on the National Mall just a day after tens of thousands protested against the war in Iraq. – AP

    9/26 White House’s First Veto? An Amendment Requiring the Military to Abide to the Geneva Conventions

    WASHINGTON — Sen. John McCain, decrying new allegations of prisoner abuse in Iraq by U.S. soldiers, on Sunday backed an amendment to force the American military to live up to its international obligations under the Geneva Convention and “not engage in torture” of detainees in Iraq and Afghanistan.

    McCain (R-Ariz.) was responding to complaints by Army Capt. Ian Fishback and two sergeants, who all served with the 82nd Airborne Division. Their description of routine harsh treatment of captives in Iraq parallels the abuse caught in photographs at the Abu Ghraib prison outside Baghdad and was contained in a Human Rights Watch report issued Friday by the advocacy group.

    . . .

    McCain noted too that he wanted prohibitions against torture underscored in the Army Field Manual, which he said “is the document that the Army goes by and the military goes by when in the process of interrogation and treatment of prisoners.”

    Told that the White House was opposed to such an amendment and that the president might veto the bill if the amendment were included, McCain said he was unsure whether there were enough votes in the Senate to override it.

    “I hope,” he said of the Bush administration, “that they will understand why we’re trying to do this and why it’s so important to America’s image in the world.” – LA Times

    9/26 Under Secretary Karen Hughes Admits to Not Knowing the Difference Between the Constitution and the Dollar Bill

    QUESTION: Going back to the subject of the President, did anyone speak specifically about President Bush — their feelings about him, objections to him?

    UNDER SECRETARY HUGHES: I haven’t really heard a lot of that. I had one person at one lunch raise the issue of the President mentioning God in his speeches. And I asked whether he was aware that previous American presidents have also cited God, and that our Constitution cites “one nation under God.” – US State Department

    9/27 Brownie Goes To Washington and Blames Everyone but Himself

    In a combative hearing pitting an unapologetic Michael Brown against frustrated members of Congress, the former FEMA director defended his handling of Hurricane Katrina and laid the blame for evacuation failures on Louisiana Gov. Kathleen Blanco and New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin.

    Brown, testifying under oath for the first time since leaving the Federal Emergency Management Agency, said his “biggest mistake was not recognizing” two days before the storm hit Aug. 29 “that Louisiana was dysfunctional.” He said it was “not the role of the federal government” to evacuate citizens and accused critics of “Monday morning quarterbacking.”

    Nagin said singling out Louisiana was “disingenuous.” “Obviously, Mr. Brown is under a lot of pressure,” Nagin said. “I feel sorry for him.” – USA Today

    9/28 House Majority Leader Indicted for Money Laundering

    House Majority Leader Tom DeLay was indicted by a Texas grand jury for political corruption, forcing him to step aside as the GOP’s second in command.

    DeLay — a pugnacious political practitioner whose hard-boiled approach to politics earned him the nickname “The Hammer” — was charged with one count of conspiring with others to launder corporate donations to state legislature candidates in Texas, where such funds are outlawed.

    DeLay faces up to two years in prison and a $10,000 fine if convicted for his alleged role in a scheme to have his federal political action committee — Texans for a Republican Majority — accept money from corporations that were funneled to the Republican National Committee that were then passed along to state candidates. – Newsday

    9/29 Federal Court Demands More Abu Ghraib Vids and Pics Released

    A federal judge in Manhattan ruled yesterday that the Defense Department must release dozens of withheld photographs and videotapes that show abuse of prisoners at Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq, rejecting an argument by top military officials that publishing the images would endanger American troops.

    “Our nation does not surrender to blackmail,” wrote the judge, Alvin K. Hellerstein of Federal District Court.

    Judge Hellerstein was responding to a statement by Gen. Richard B. Myers, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, who said publication of the images could provoke acts of terrorism against American soldiers.

    “Our struggle to prevail” in Iraq, the judge wrote, “must be without sacrificing the transparency and accountability of government and military officials.” – New York Times

    9/29 Pentagon Refuses to Support the Troops

    WASHINGTON – Nearly a year after Congress demanded action, the Pentagon has still failed to figure out a way to reimburse soldiers for body armor and equipment they purchased to better protect themselves while serving in Iraq.

    Soldiers and their parents are still spending hundreds and sometimes thousands of dollars for armor they say the military won’t provide. One U.S. senator said Wednesday he will try again to force the Pentagon to obey the reimbursement law it opposed from the outset and has so far not implemented. – AP

    9/30 NYT Reporter Released from Jail & Fingers Scooter of the office of the Vice President

    I. Lewis “Scooter” Libby, Vice President Dick Cheney’s chief of staff, emerged Friday at the center of the federal grand jury inquiry into who inside the government leaked the identity of former undercover CIA officer Valerie Plame.

    New York Times reporter Judith Miller testified to the grand jury behind closed doors for more than four hours, after serving 85 days in jail rather than discuss in court her off-the-record July 2003 interview with Libby.

    She appeared in court only after hearing directly from Libby by phone and letter that he had no objection to her testifying. Special prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald also promised to limit his questioning of Miller to only the Libby contacts regarding Plame.

    “I served 85 days in jail because of my belief in the importance of upholding the confidential relationship journalists have with their sources,” Miller said. “Believe me, I did not want to be in jail. But I would have stayed even longer.” msnbc

    9/30 BushCo Found Guilty of Buying and Spreading Propaganda

    Federal auditors said on Friday that the Bush administration violated the law by buying favorable news coverage of President Bush’s education policies, by making payments to the conservative commentator Armstrong Williams and by hiring a public relations company to analyze media perceptions of the Republican Party.

    In a blistering report, the investigators, from the Government Accountability Office, said the administration had disseminated “covert propaganda” in the United States, in violation of a statutory ban. – New York Times

    9/30 Rumsfeld Admits of Training Insurgents in Iraq

    As fresh violence claimed dozens more Iraqi and US lives yesterday, the top US military commander in Iraq backed off previous predictions that a substantial number of US troops would be withdrawn next year, and he warned that a growing political divide over a new constitution could fuel worse bloodshed in the months ahead.

    . . .

    There are a total of 192,000 US-trained Iraqi forces, including police, soldiers, and border patrol, according to Pentagon figures.

    Some lawmakers raised concerns about the loyalties of those Iraqi security forces, citing reports that insurgents have been infiltrating the Iraqi forces in significant numbers. There are ”continuing reports that the Iraqi police and security forces we’re training are substantially infiltrated by insurgents,” Senator Edward M. Kennedy, Democrat of Massachusetts, said in questioning (Defense Secretary Donald) Rumsfeld.

    Rumsfeld responded, ”It’s a problem that’s faced by police forces in every major city in our country, that criminals infiltrate and sign up to join the police force.”

    However, the top US intelligence official said yesterday that the make-up and organization of the increasingly violent Iraq insurgency remains a puzzle to US officials 2 1/2 years after the US-led invasion toppled Saddam Hussein. – Boston Globe

    sorta important news, wouldnt you say?

    not if youre only interested in telling the good news to the Righties…

    last time the Instapundit mentioned “Rumsfeld”, you know, the Secretary of Defense – we are in a war, one that the professor supports: 9/7

    last time he mentioned the bothersome and annoying “Geneva Conventions”?: 1/16

    the last three mentions of McCain were all in relation to: pork

    last time he mentioned Karen Hughes? 6/10… of 2002 (cant really blame him on that one)

    last mention of Michael Brown? 9/23 regarding, you guessed it, pork. meaning his trip to DC to testify was ignorned by the professor

    any mention of BushCo being caught for propaganda?


    however he did make time to post about Serenity 6 times this week plus 5 updates. we’ll agree to agree on that one. it’s a good flick. especially during a week that you wish you could escape.

    Serenity now? indeed.

    more fuckups + dems, youre having the best week ever + matt welch