Wednesday, November 29, 2006


Orcinus: "The more psychotic the voter, the more likely they were to vote for Bush."

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

'Cut and Run' Must be First Step in Iraq

'Cut and Run' Must be First Step in Iraq
by William E. Odom

The United States upset the regional balance in the Mideast when it invaded Iraq. Restoring it requires bold initiatives, but 'cutting and running' must precede them all. Only a withdrawal of all U.S. troops - within six months and with no preconditions - can break the paralysis that enfeebles our diplomacy. And the greatest obstacles to cutting and running are the psychological inhibitions of our leaders and the public.

Our leaders do not act because their reputations are at stake. The public does not force them to act because it is blinded by the president's conjured set of illusions: that we are reducing terrorism by fighting in Iraq, creating democracy there, preventing the spread of nuclear weapons, making Israel more secure, not allowing our fallen soldiers to have died in vain, and others.

But reality no longer can be avoided. It is beyond U.S. power to prevent sectarian violence in Iraq, the growing influence of Iran throughout the region, the probable spread of Sunni-Shiite strife to neighboring Arab states, the eventual rise to power of the anti-American cleric Muqtada al-Sadr or some other anti-American leader in Baghdad, and the spread of instability beyond Iraq.

These realities get worse every day that our forces remain in Iraq. They can't be wished away by clever diplomacy or by leaving our forces in Iraq for several more years.

The administration could recognize that a rapid withdrawal is the only way to overcome our strategic paralysis, although that appears unlikely. Congress could force a stock-taking. Failing this, the public, sooner or later, will see through all of the White House's double talk and compel a radical policy change. The price for delay, however, will be more lives lost in vain.

Some lawmakers are ready to change course but are puzzled as to how to leave Iraq. The answer is four major initiatives to provide regional stability and calm in Iraq. They will leave the U.S. less influential in the region. But it will be the best deal we can get."

Sunday, November 12, 2006

God Has A Plan For Your Life

For Renee

Polybius (205 BC - 118 BC), The Histories

Friday, November 10, 2006

Something Profound on the Meaning of the Election Results

We got more votes for our candidates because we cared more about the direction of our country.

At the close of the Constitutional Convention in Philadelphia on September 18, 1787, a Mrs. Powel anxiously awaited the results, and as Benjamin Franklin emerged from the long task now finished, asked him directly: "Well Doctor, what have we got, a republic or a monarchy?" "A republic if you can keep it" responded Franklin.

Metrics for gauging our success: Earmark reform, e-voting reform, campaign finance reform (public financing would help break the connection between rampant corruption and lobbys' money as well as opening the door to true citizen legislators) and greater transparency in legislative deliberations.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Efficacy Rules!

My predictions are looking pretty good, especially for having been made a week before election day. I'm awaiting an offer of employment from Chuck Todd at National Journal's Hotline.

Friday, November 03, 2006

Running From Bush

Who isn't?

Tuesday's election results may very well portend the end of conservative hegemony in American politics for a generation.

Regardless, it will certainly be a kick in the teeth to all of the Bush sycophants and cult-of-personality so-called conservatives who have haunted Congress like ghouls at a hog-trough for the last eight years.

Actually, a repudiation of Bush and conservative rule will be more satisfying than impeachment. After all, it hasn't been just Bush but also his enablng republican congress which has grounded the ship of state. Impeachment would only remove the figurehead. It is the whole crew which needs keel-hauling.

Couldn't happen to a more deserving bunch of self-righteous "I'm okay but you're un-American" moralizers: cast on the shoals of history.

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Bad jokes all round

Kerry's gaffe was cringe-making, but the response of the Republican attack dogs shows how bankrupt the Bush administration now is.

Iraq is going to hell in a hand basket. The median American family is more than $1,000 a year worse off than it was in 2000. American health care is broken. The country is falling in the world education rankings. Global warming is going to hobble the world economy, if not end life on earth. And the Republicans really think they can win an election by attacking John Kerry?

Ginning Up a Controversy

CNN certainly isn't the only media outlet currently busy stacking molehills on John Kerry, but it is a prime example of the phenomenon.

Kerry "botched" a joke about Bush. Okay. We get it. Kerry meant to say if one didn't study hard, one could end up quagmired in Iraq just like Bush. He just left off the last three words (which were in the prepared text of his speech). Play the line, play the explanation and then play the reaction to the line. Now try to explain why this tempest in a teapot is repeated every fifteen minutes on CNN.

It's always the silly season on TV.