Loyalty without truth
is a trail to tyranny.
|Saturday, 4 September 2004 at 15h 41m 25s|
Leave Those Children Underneath Statistics
From an article in
the New York Times by Sam Dillon
School ratings issued under the terms of President Bush's No Child Left
Behind law have clashed with school report card systems administered by some
states, leaving parents unsure which level of government to believe or whether
to transfer their children, an option offered by the law.
In North Carolina, which pioneered one of the nation's most sophisticated
accountability systems, more than 32 schools ranked as excellent by the state
failed to meet Washington's criteria for academic progress. In California, 317
schools showed tremendous academic growth on the state's performance index, yet
the federal law labeled them low-performing.
Here in Darien, the Hinsdale South High School is one of a dozen prestigious
high schools in prosperous Chicago suburbs that failed to meet a federal target
and were obligated to send letters to parents explaining their shortcomings and
offering to transfer children to other schools.
In Westport, Conn., the Bedford Middle School, where test scores are often
among Connecticut's highest, was called low-performing because the school
failed to meet the 95 percent standard for testing for the disabled by one
"It really bugs me that we got a black eye for a mechanical reason rather than
for anything legitimate," said Dr. Elliott Landon, Westport's superintendent.
Montgomery High School in Skillman, N.J., seven miles northwest of Princeton,
was honored by the federal Department of Education as a Blue Ribbon School of
Excellence in 1993, and last year its mean SAT score of 1220 was 194 points
above the national average. But Montgomery, too, failed to meet federal targets
last year because one student's absence brought the school afoul of the federal
rule requiring that 95 percent of students take standardized tests.
This law is tooted by the Administration as an effort to get rid of the "soft
bigotry of low expectations." But the administration does not speak of the
various criticisms about the proposed medicine. The administration also has
not fully funded the act, nor has the administration addressed the many
different budget cuts that schools all across the nation are having to make
because of shrinking tax bases and rising insurance costs. It is a foolish
assumption that a troubled school will be able to hire quality staff to teach
difficult, ill-prepared students with less funds.
According to the Democratic Policy Committee's chairman Byron
President Bush's budget proposes the smallest increase for education since
Fiscal Year 1996. While total discretionary spending for education would rise
three percent (or $1.68 billion) from $55.67 billion to $57.34 billion, if
enacted, this figure would be the smallest increase for education since Fiscal
Year 1996, at a time when schools are struggling to meet the mandates of the
The President's budget would severely underfund NCLB programs. Schools are
struggling to provide quality services to increased numbers of students, while
also implementing accountability and testing mandates. At the same time, state
budget crises are forcing dramatic cuts in state education funding. Yet, the
Administration proposes a small increase of only $448 million (or 1.8 percent)
to $24.91 billion over the Fiscal Year 2004 level of $24.46 billion for the
law. The Bush budget would underfund the levels promised by NCLB for Fiscal
Year 2005 ($34.32 billion) by $9.4 billion.
The President's budget would leave millions of children behind by failing to
fully fund the Title I program for disadvantaged students. Title I is critical
to closing achievement gaps, maximizing student achievement, and helping all
students learn. While the Administration proposes an increase of $1 billion -
for a total of $13.34 billion - this figure is more than $7.1 billion below the
NCLB authorized level for Fiscal Year 2005 ($20.5 billion). Overall, the
President's budget leaves 4.6 million children behind. If Title I were funded
at the level promised by the NCLB in Fiscal Year 2005, it would fully serve 2.4
million more - over half - of those children currently left behind.
The President's budget would fail to fully fund the Individuals with
Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) (or special education) Part B State Grants.
Fully funding IDEA would help disabled students succeed and ensure that schools
have the resources they need to serve all children well. The Administration,
however, proposes to increase IDEA Part B funding by only $1 billion, for a
total of $11.07 billion - significantly less than what is needed to move toward
fully funding the program. This figure would provide 19.7 percent of the
national average per-pupil expenditure - still less than half of the "full
funding" level that Congress committed to paying when the IDEA was first
adopted in 1975.
Pell grant maximum award would be frozen. During his presidential campaign,
then-candidate Bush promised a maximum Pell grant award of $5,100. But under
President Bush's budget, the maximum award would be frozen for the third
straight year at $4,050, enough to pay just 34 percent of the average annual
cost of attending college - down from 42 percent in 2001.
The President's budget would pay for inadequate increases to Title I and IDEA
by eliminating 38 education programs providing vital services to children.
Programs slated for elimination include dropout prevention, gifted and
talented, school counseling, alcohol abuse reduction, arts in education,
Leveraging Educational Assistance Partnerships (LEAP), and school leadership.
Many of the eliminated programs have proven track records in helping students
stay in and succeed at school. Eliminating these programs seems in direct
conflict with the laudable goal of increasing graduation rates which is central
to the Administration's focus on literacy.
The President's budget would further undermine the NCLB by level-funding
programs that work. These programs include 21st Century Community Learning
Centers (which fund after-school programs), despite strong evidence that
keeping children safe after school can reduce juvenile crime and prevent
children from engaging in risky behaviors. 21st Century Community Learning
Centers would be level-funded at $999 million - half of the $2 billion Fiscal
Year 2005 authorized level. As a result, 1.32 million children who should
receive after-school services would be left behind. He freezes most other major
K-12 education programs without providing an inflation adjustment, including
Impact Aid ($1.2 billion), rural education ($168 million), and English language
acquisition ($681 million).
The President's budget includes a "choice incentive fund" that would divert
taxpayer funds to private schools through a $50 million voucher program.
Research clearly demonstrates that vouchers do little to improve student
achievement. Yet, the President includes in his budget $50 million for a
new "Choice Incentive Fund" to pay for student transfers to private and public
schools - an initiative that is merely a cover for private school voucher
programs. Rather than experimenting with programs that make no real difference
in student achievement, we should focus on ensuring that all students have the
tools for success - including smaller class sizes, high teacher quality, more
parental involvement, and up-to-date materials.
Despite President Bush's emphasis on job training in his State of the Union
address, his budget proposal would reduce federal spending for career and
technical education to approximately $1 billion, a cut of more than $300
million from this year's funding levels.
Or, as was well stated by House Representative from Ohio Dennis Kucinich
in January 2004
"New Hampshire teachers receive the 49th lowest salaries in the country,"
Kucinich said, "and the Bush Administration's implementation of the 'No Child
Left Behind Act' is exacerbating the problem. A study by the New Hampshire
School Administrators Association estimated that the Bush Administration's plan
will give New Hampshire schools only $77 for every student, while costing the
state $575 per student to implement....
To make matters worse, the Bush Administration has cut in New Hampshire alone:
$800,000 for Pell Grant funding for lower income college students, $1.1 million
for educating children in rural schools, $400,000 for teacher quality training
grants, and $230,000 for safe and drug free schools grants.
You see, school districts are spending more money to implement tests than they
are receiving in funding, and they are having to make cuts to comply with the
laws, instead of beefing up programs that would assist the student's abilities
and skills that aid their taking of these tests.
You can read what John Kerry has said about this
Leaving aside the rigidity of the rubric used to determine whether a school is
failing, the prescribed medicine is ridiculous. The idea that competition will
automatically create a better educational system ignores the reality that there
are only so many seats available in those schools with good staffs and a
dedicated source of funding. Poor kids with vouchers will still be turned
away, and forced to go to the remaining schools. If the system becomes based
on profit, than the good schools will become more expensive. And the poor
schools will further wither once the students who can leave depart. The
students who remain will be those students who are most in need and least
prepared, and the schools will have less funds than they did before. This act
is only a self-fulfilling prophesy.
There are measures that are more effective than the Leave No Child Behind
(LNCB) Legislation. These consist of reducing the class size and the work load
of the teaching staff so that they will have more time to devote to the
specific needs of the students. Providing intervention programs such as after
school tutors, and special classes that specifically address the needs of
disabled and ESL students. Schools that have improved use these techniques.
The LNCB act is however merely punitive, and does not provide the funds
necessary to assist troubled schools in their efforts to improve. And how can
a rubric which measures improvement as a percentage increase really be an
accurate assessment? Once a school reaches a certain high caliber level of
achievement, how much further can the school improve? To use an analogy, when
a student makes a 98% on a test, do we consider the student failing because
they score a 96% on the next test?
The LNCB act was really designed by people who wanted to destroy the public
school system, because despite vast evidence to the contrary, they are blinded
by a belief that privatization is preferable. But, just as in the Medical
Health industry, some sectors of our society are just too important and too
expensive to be farmed out to for profit corporations. The role of government
is and has always been to make investments in our communities that benefit
society as a whole.
Competition is based on the idea that the companies who survive are those who
can make the most profit for the least amount of investment. This is often
referred to in economic literature as efficiency or worker
productivity. In some sectors of the economy, this is preferable. But in
other economic sectors, a decrease in investment for the sake of efficiency
(and profit)results in a product of poor quality, a more expensive product, or
both. This is certainly the case with education and medical care.
And although it might be true that the President's budget is the largest
educational outlay in the history of the budget, that statement is indicative
only of the natural law of increase. The budget is still about $26 billion
below what was authorized in the NCLB legislation. A 1.6% increase only keeps
up with inflation. The money spent on Education each year has always been
higher than the previous year, so it takes a lot of sophistry to imply that the
minor increase is indicative of a great new era. You can increase my $3000
monthly salary by 48 dollars (a 1.6% increase) and I will have made more money
than I ever did before, but I certainly won't be able now buy a house anymore
than I was the year before. The same can be said for the Education budget that
is touted as the largest in history.
So when president Bush mouths off about how he is raising the bar and
eliminating the so-called "soft-bigotry of low expectations," he does not
fairly describe the reality of education. Instead, The "Children Are Being
Left Behind Act" should be referred to as "the rigid stupidity of
|Friday, 3 September 2004 at 21h 28m 23s|
Bush lives in a bubble
We know how the Bush administration has handled the war: It fouled up
royally. First, it had bad intelligence. Second, administration members shut
their eyes and their minds to all advice, to all of the caveats from the
intelligence community, that didn't justify going to war. Third, the
administration disregarded sound military advice that a lot more troops would
be needed than it was sending. Fourth, by not giving the U.N. weapons
inspectors time to finish their job, the Bush administration lost the support
of France, Germany, Russia and most of the rest of the world. Fifth, it did not
stop the looting. Sixth, it did not anticipate and prepare for the resistance.
Seventh, its occupation has been nothing but a cluster-blunder. And eighth, it
has overextended the U.S. military but stubbornly refuses to admit it....
I noticed that Mr. Bush has added Afghanistan and Iraq to the roster of
democracies in one of his campaign ads, which, in a bizarre fashion, has clips
of the Olympics. Neither Iraq nor Afghanistan is a democracy. They are both led
by U.S.-appointed people. Both rely on U.S. forces for security. Both are
unstable, are dominated by warlords and are far from peaceful.
Mr. Bush seems to have a talent (some would call it a mental aberration) of
believing that things are so if he merely says they are so. Thus, Iraq, which
he once said had weapons of mass destruction, is now a democracy in his mind,
despite the fact that no elections have been held. He also believes that we
have a robust economy, which is something else that is not in sync with reality.
That's what worries me most about President Bush. He seems to live inside a
bubble created by his staff and cronies and to be genuinely unaware of what's
going on outside his bubble. It is very dangerous to have a president who
cannot see the world as it really is. Novelist Ayn Rand once observed that
while we can ignore reality, we cannot ignore the consequences of ignoring
President Bush has proven to be all campaign and no governance. Every word out
of his mouth, every policy, seems to have been crafted by campaign aides with
the goal of not accomplishing anything but his re-election.
That, too, is a dangerous situation. Every president has to keep an eye on the
electorate, but the best ones have always tried to do the right thing even if
their campaign aides objected. A true leader will do the right thing and then
try to convince the voters that he has done so. An empty suit will do whatever
his campaign manipulators tell him is best for the re-election campaign.
-- Charley Reese, For Friday, September
|Thursday, 2 September 2004 at 20h 7m 13s|
Kerry takes off the Gloves, but will the Media show it.
The Kerry campaign has just released the following prepared remarks, to be
delivered tonight at a campaign rally in Springfield, Ohio.
"We all saw the anger and distortion of the Republican Convention. For the past
week, they attacked my patriotism and my fitness to serve as Commander-in-
chief. Well, here's my answer. I'm not going to have my commitment to defend
this country questioned by those who refused to serve when they could have and
by those who have misled the nation into Iraq.
"The Vice President even called me unfit for office last night. I guess I'll
leave it up to the voters whether five deferments makes someone more qualified
to defend this nation than two tours of duty.
"Let me tell you what I think makes someone unfit for duty. Misleading our
nation into war in Iraq makes you unfit to lead this nation. Doing nothing
while this nation loses millions of jobs makes you unfit to lead this nation.
Letting 45 million Americans go without healthcare makes you unfit to lead this
nation. Letting the Saudi Royal Family control our energy costs makes you unfit
to lead this nation. Handing out billions of government contracts to
Halliburton while you're still on their payroll makes you unfit. That's the
record of George Bush and Dick Cheney. And it's not going to change. I believe
it's time to move America in a new direction; I believe it's time to set a new
course for America."
Which soundbite will the corporate media allow? Will there then be a cut to
a "political analyst" who says that Kerry is out of touch with America,
something else that is mean-spirited and derogatory, or just plain irrelevant
Perhaps instead the corporate media will focus on the "irresponsible antics" of
the 10 or 15 protesters who shed their suits on the RNC floor in the middle of
Bush's revision of history --- uh, I mean acceptance speech.
There I go again, Bush-bashing in a way only a Clinton-hater could love.
By the way, rumor is that Tony Blair is sick of President Bush's incompetence.
Bush has been begging him to come to the United States to give him a medal, so
there can be a photo-op moment of Bush looking presidential. But Blair refuses.
The word is out. Bush is an incompetent, petulant, desperately mean bastard.
Sorry if you're ignorant ass thinks that the truth is Bush-bashing.
No, I'm not. Get an education and leave me alone.
|Wednesday, 1 September 2004 at 23h 16m 1s|
Liberators or Occupiers
Zell Miller preceded Vice President Dick Cheney, saying that "nothing
makes this ex-marine more mad" when American troops in Iraq are
called "occupiers" instead of "liberators" by what he calls
Well sir, tell that to the Iraqi's.
When United States troops remained in Germany and Japan after World War Two,
not one soldier, NOT A SINGLE SOLDIER was shot or killed by militia groups.
How many American soldiers have died since the day Bush landed on an Aircraft
Carrier and announced "Mission Accomplished?" As of September 1st 2004, twice
as many as were killed before the mission was accomplished.
And don't liberators do deeds like repair the infrastructure, rather than skim
off billions for profits or importing cheap labor instead of hiring unemployed
young Iraqi's in need of work?
Do liberators round up random groups of teenagers, toss them in jails like Abu
Ghraib, and subject them to humiliation akin to (if not outright) torture?
Do liberators appoint corrupt Baathist officials and promulgate a constitution
instead of holding free elections, because the Bush administration was more
interested in creating economic opportunities for foreign investors and
multinational corporations? This is what happened when General Jay Garner was
pulled out of Iraq in June 2003 and replaced by Paul Bremer.
And is it to liberate Iraq that appointed ambassador John Negroponte says this
week that he is going to divert reconstruction spending into security forces?
Will the Iraqi's see Americans as liberators when they are dying from depleted
Uranium, who have sewage in their water supply, and who can't get more than 4
hours of electricity because privatization has been an absolute failure. Does
that hate in their eyes come from the love they have for what is presumed by
speakers at the Republican podium?
And now in the wake of these compiled failures, the urge for stability is so
great that we are in the midst of creating a police state headed by a new thug
named Allawi, using the same police that Saddam used, and the same prisons
where Saddam tortured.
Living in a bubble, blind patriots don't connect the ineptitude of the Bush
administration to the current results, since they have assumed the morality of
ending one dictator will automatically produce a glorious democracy of freedom
regardless of history and deep rifts in the Iraqi state. We don't take up arms
in the United States when we disagree politically, but will the well trained,
armed militias of the Kurds, Shitites, and Sunni's do so.
According to observers with 20-30 years of knowledge and real experience in the
region (as opposed to the ideologues who safely write position papers in the
cubicles of statuesque offices at think-tank Washington D.C.) no one in Iraq
believes the elections of 2005 will matter at all.
This is not a "miscalculation." That word implies that you dutifully multiplied
2 and 4 and ... oops ... you got 6. This is a disgraceful failure, and the
vehemence of rebuttal is just defiant denial. Not only did the administration
not study for the test, not only did they not pay attention in class or do
their homework, but they also presumed they didn't even have to read the book
on how to effectively pursue foreign policy and warfare.
But some people who take a shit will eat it too.
Beating the chest and shouting "USA" is not going to change reality. And
completely misses the point. Admitting that the Iraq war is a disaster because
of incompetence and lies is not anti-patriotic. Are we going to chop off our
nose to spite the face?
Two sources you can consult : Robert
Fisk and juan cole.
|Wednesday, 1 September 2004 at 21h 0m 12s|
The Party that does not Hate
Picture of old geezer with squishy face, wearing a band-aid on his chin to
mock Kerry -- based on lies that he believes to be true.
|Wednesday, 1 September 2004 at 22h 57m 24s|
Schwastikaneger Lies Again
On Tuesday, 31 August 2004, at the GOP conventions, Schwarzenegger said:
I finally arrived here in 1968. What a special day it was. I remember I arrived
here with empty pockets but full of dreams, full of determination, full of
desire.The presidential campaign was in full swing. I remember watching the
Nixon-Humphrey presidential race on TV. A friend of mine who spoke German and
English translated for me. I heard Humphrey saying things that sounded like
socialism, which I had just left.
The facts? There was no presidential debate in that election. Nixon never
But then I heard Nixon speak. Then I heard Nixon speak. He was talking about
free enterprise, getting the government off your back, lowering the taxes and
strengthening the military.
interests Schwastikaneger lied.
Yes Schwastikaneger said he took no special interest money, and when asked why
he's taking millions from corporate lobbyists by some upsnippity reporter,
Schwastikaneger said he meant unions.
And what things did his friend translate sounded like "socialism?" Could it be
that ole Schwastikaneger threw uneducated nonsense to the hungry idiotic dogs
so that he could fed of off their irrational screams?
Hubert Humphrey of all people. Hubert Humphrey was a great speaker with a
passion for the rights and freedoms of all men. This is the man who bravely
made a speech at the 1948 Democratic convention where he wanted his party to
enter the "beautiful light" by ending southern segregation and add a civil
rights plank. Was ending the culture of racism socialism?
He happened to be Vice President when Lyndon Johnson was president, and became
the Democratic nominee by default after Johnson resigned and Robert Kennedy was
assassinated. What could Schwastikaneger be talking about? What could
Humphrey have said that "sounded like socialism?"
Let's look at some Humphrey quotes from
Fortunately, the time has long passed when people
liked to regard the United States as some kind of
melting pot, taking men and women from every part
of the world and converting them into standardized,
homogenized Americans. We are, I think, much more
mature and wise today. Just as we welcome a world
of diversity, so we glory in an America of diversity--
an America all the richer for the many different and
distinctive strands of which it is woven.
--Hubert H. Humphrey "All-America Tribute to
Archbishop Iakovos," speech,
15 Jan. 1967, Chicago, Ill.
Much of our American progress has been the product
of the individual who had an idea; pursued it; fashioned
it; tenaciously clung to it against all odds; and then
produced it, sold it, and profited from it.
--NO DATE GIVEN
OR FROM http://www.hhh.umn.edu/humphrey-forum/quot.htm
"We cannot use a double standard for measuring our own and other people's
policies. Our demands for democratic practices in other lands will be no more
effective than the guarantees of those practiced in our own country."
"I am not here to judge whether people are locked in poverty because of
themselves or because of the society in which they live. All I know is that
they are there and we are trying to do something about it."
"It is all too easy for a society to measure itself against some abstract
philosophical principle or political slogan. But in the end, there must remain
the question: What kind of life is one society providing to the people that
live in it?"
"When we say, 'One nation under God, with liberty and justice for all', we are
talking about all people. We either ought to believe it or quit saying it ."
"Equality means equality for all - no exceptions, no 'yes, buts', no
asterisked footnotes imposing limits."
"Be clear where America stands. Human brotherhood and equal opportunity for
every man, woman, and child, we are committed to it, in America and around the
"What you do, what each of us does, has an effect on the country, the state,
the nation, and the world."
"My philosophy has always been that benefits should percolate up rather than
"There is no such thing as an acceptable level of unemployment, because hunger
is not acceptable, poverty is not acceptable, poor health is not acceptable,
and a ruined life is not acceptable."
--NO DATE GIVEN
Which one of these statements sounds like "socialism" to the schwatstikaneger?
I don't hear any calling for government control of the means of production in
any of these quotations. I don't hear any calling by Humphrey for the workers
to take over the factories.
What I do hear is a sense that there is a moral obligation by our society to
have a bottom level, a bare minimum so that no one should have to be born into
poverty, ignorance, or suffer the indignity of bankruptcy merely because they
become sick. This does not mean government handouts or welfare queens. This
means food stamps so that children don't have to starve. This means a free
public education so that everyone has access to the same opportunity. This
means that no one should be exploited or profit from the sick and disabled.
All too often, that word is abused by politicians with a hidden agenda and a
vain eye looking at power. Schwastikaneger is no exception.
|Wednesday, 1 September 2004 at 17h 17m 50s|
Did Nixon really say that in 1968?
"When the strongest nation in the world can be tied down for four years in a
war in Vietnam with no end in sight, when the richest nation in the world
cannot manage its economy, when the nation with the greatest tradition of the
rule of war is plagued by unprecedented racial violence, when the President of
the United States cannot travel abroad, or to any major city at home, then its
time for new leadership for the United States."
-- President Nixon, 1968 RNC Acceptance Speech
|Tuesday, 31 August 2004 at 20h 31m 37s|
Republicans act like they didn't seek the Iraq war
"The speech-makers kept saying "we did not seek this war," and that it was
imposed on us, and by God we were going to keep hitting back. That is, the
rhetoric was that of righteous anger, of the avenging victim. While this
argument works with regard to Afghanistan (which the US did not invade, only
providing air cover to an indigenous group. the Northern Alliance), it is
hollow with regard to Iraq. Only by confusing the "war on terror" with the war
on Iraq could this rhetoric be even somewhat meaningful, and it is not a valid
"No American president has more desperately sought out a war with any country
than George W. Bush sought out this war with Iraq. Only Polk's war on Mexico,
also based on false pretexts, even comes close to the degree of crafty
manipulation employed by Bush and Cheney to get up the Iraq war. Intelligence
about weapons of mass destruction was deliberately and vastly exaggerated,
producing a "nuclear threat" where there wasn't even so much as a single gamma
ray to be registered. Innuendo and repetition were cleverly used to tie Saddam
to Usama Bin Laden operationally, a link that all serious intelligence
-- Juan Cole, at www.juancole.com
|Tuesday, 31 August 2004 at 0h 14m 38s|
Another Chronicle Moment
Every now and then I'll pick up the local rag out here in liberal land, the San
Francisco Chronicle. Occassionally there is an insightful piece, and there are
a few good reporters on the staff, but for the most part the "comical" is just
another down-sized newspaper owned by the Hearst Corporation, with ill-informed
self-important hack writers and a lot of slush reporting that reeks of the
worldview of corporate executive bean-counters, cheerleaders of the impersonal
magical delusion that is the misunderstood globalism ideology.
This morning was no different. I have since learned to avoid the editorial
opinion page because it makes my stomach hurt to read what is presented as
factual, or how insidious arrogant banter can be congruent to thoughtful reason.
So today there was this opinion from some naval insider expert who actually
thought that the greatest accounting scandal was .... take a guess? Nope, not
Enron. Nope the greatest accounting scandal was the WMD accounting by the
Saddam regime. Yep, this fool was making muck about how Saddam's minions would
make 40,000 tons of Sarin and write down 50,000 on the books, or vice versa.
He titles his piece "An accounting scandal that could dwarf Enron ."
And that was the gist of the opinion. No mention was made of how the stocks of
the mythical Sarin gas were destroyed in the 1990's by international
inspectors. No mention was made of how the Reagan administration sold Hussein
the original stockpile of bio-chemical weapons, with Rumsfeld as the man who
made the deals.
The navy fool who presumed he was cute and smart, was deceptive beyond belief.
He mentioned how David Kay signed some document saying that Saddam needed to
get rid of these WMD monsters ... but said not one word, NOT ONE
DAMN WORD, about how the same David Kay returned from Iraq in January 2004 to
resign and testify before Congress that not only were there NO WEAPONS OF MASS
DESTRUCTION, but that he had serious concerns that the credibility of the Bush
administration was a matter of grave concern.
Although he has since mended fences with the Bush administration, David Kay did
have a genuine crisis of conscience and decided the truth was more important.
But not this hack Naval expert named Douglas A. Borer, an associate professor
in the Department of Defense Analysis at the Naval Postgraduate School in
Wowwie-zowwie, an associate professor, really.
Here's a moment of lucidity offered by this Borer fellow:
Hussein swore on a stack of Korans no weapons or programs existed, but
virtually every intelligence analyst on the planet did not believe him, because
the books did not balance. David Kay and Richard Butler, both former U. N.
chief weapons inspectors, have testified that official Iraqi records seized in
the 1990s clearly showed significant quantities of various chemical agents that
Iraq had produced, but did not turn over for destruction.
Virtually every intelligence analyst on the planet did what? Why is Borer not
mentioning Hans Blix or Scott Ritter, who have been consistently vociferous
that the 1990's inspectors effectively eliminated the stockpiles provided by
the Reagan administration.
Bush agreed with the intelligence experts -- one side of the deadly ledger did
not match the other. These ledgers served as the most compelling evidence that
the president pointed to in making his case for war.
And despite the artful comments about swearing on the Koran, even according to
the same David Kay, there were no Weapons of Mass Destruction in Iraq, swearing
or not. And in the 2000 election, GW Bush didn't swear on a bible when he said
he didn't believe in nation building, but what do you call it when you invade a
nation, appoint their leaders and write their new constitution?
And those mythical mobile trailers that Colin Powell mentioned? And the
yellowcake Uranium that never was? And the aluminum tubes that were supposed
to be for centrifuges, except that oops, they were actually not anywhere near
thick enough. And all of the statements of certainty about WMD made by
Rumsfeld and Wolfowitz and Cheney...
But hey, since one side of the deadly ledger did not match the other, Bush went
to war on a shoestring, ignoring the advice of his generals, paying top
dollar for the lies of Ahmed Chalabi and the skimmed profits for the intricate
webs of insider Halliburton consultants and sub-contractors. And
the "compelling evidence" all came from the Office of Special Plans created by
Rumsfeld and headed by Douglas Feith, where all intelligence was routed and
doctored first, and spiced up or ignored the reports to suit what they intended
to on day one.
Mr. Borer, you should apply the Enron accounting principles to the Rumsfeld
intelligence selecting principles.
|Monday, 30 August 2004 at 0h 2m 9s|
Who's deluded Mr. McCain
John McCain just told a captive audience that anyone who doesn't understand the
dangers out there in terrorist land is delusional?
Oh, so the administration's sloppy, arrogant ability to conduct the wars on
terror represents fearless leadership.
We are told that Mr. Bush makes unpopular decisions, that he doesn't follow the
tide. But he listens to the advice of men who doctor his intelligence
briefing, who pay Ahmed Chalabi $100,000 a month to tell them falsehoods taht
they want to hear, who have Israeli spies in their offices, who out CIA agents
trying to snuff out terrorist networks for partisan political motivations, and
who allow Pakistan's military dictatorship to sell nuclear secrets on the black-
market without so much as a slap on the wrist.
Oh, Bush is so successful at this war on the big bad ambiguous "terror" that he
allowed Halliburton and corporate insiders to do whatever they wanted in Iraq,
even if that meant an inability to adequately supply the troops with food,
ammunition, and guns. In the beginning of that war, our troops had to be fed
by Italian troops, because Halliburton couldn't supply MRE's that weren't
rotten. Our troops were using AK-47's captured from Iraq because Halliburton
couldn't supply enough equipement. They skimmed the profits off first, and
bought the supplies as cheaply as possible ... and this is what the Army
commission concluded in it's own investigation.
The company which Halliburton sub-contracted to deliver the mail refused to
deliver it to the soldiers in Iraqi outposts, and forced soldiers to drive 70
miles through potential ambush territory just to pick up their mail.
And then they overcharged the military for this lame service!! Oh, and you can
bet this ineptitude certainly does wonders for morale of the soldiers. What
ever happened to the days when the military provided these services without
Did I mention sending the unprepared National Guard to Iraq when they should be
hear protecting the homeland. Did I mention dangerously overextending the
military, and ignoring the recommendations of top brass of whom every single
warning about Iraq came true.
And the Iraqi soccer team the Bush used as an example of how great his actions
have been? In a Sports Illustrated article (another bastion of liberal ideas
no doubt) every single member of the Iraqi soccer team asked Bush not to use
them for his political purposes. Every single one wanted the military out.
One member of the team had this to say: "How can Bush face his God knowing he
has killed so many?"
But you go ahead and believe Bush is a valiant, bold leader who is going to
protect us from terror. Meanwhile, you need to go back and brush up on Senator
McCarthy. He too was praised for his boldness, and his bravery. And then one
day America woke up and saw McCarthy for the drunken opportunist that he was.
Yes, he was a really a drunk, and the corporate anti-unionists used the Red
Scare to pursue their own political agendas under the guise of patriotism.
Myself, I know a phony when I see one.
There were more police in New York City keeping an eye on the peaceful
protestors, than there are military personnel in Afghanistan, which is bombing
voter registration areas and asking the American appointed president to resign.
And cutting the budget that would secure our ports and beef up local fire-
fighters and police forces is another grand example of an effective war on
terror. Keep in mind that the Administration did not even want a national
agency of airport baggage screeners because they thought it was better to allow
the same inept private firms repeat the same poor performance because they
prefer making money more than providing adequate security.
John McCain is just another vainglorious fool who sees a chance to be a
national figure, and he's so politically ambitious that he'll sell his soul to
the devil to have a chance at the Presidency.
If someone slimed my honorable war record after I was in a prison camp for 5
years, if someone belittled and insulted my family like Bush did to McCain in
2000 South Carolina, there's no way I would praise this man in public.
And what does this Republi-thug party that swore they would not use 9-11 for
partisan gains do on day one? Choose one of the many 9-11 family members to
cry on stage before a national audience.
You can call this leadership. I call it disgusting and disgraceful.
But some people will blind themselves in order to pursue their relentless
ambitions. What a shame. I used to have respect for McCain.
And I'm sorry if you fall for this bull too. You can't fight a war on terror,
with the same foreign policy that created the anger which causes people to
perform terrorist acts. They don't "hate our freedom". They hate our foreign
Would you want a nation to invade, pillage our museums, destroy our electric
grid and sewage maintance systems, promulgate a new constitution that allows
foreign companies to import Mexican labor replacements and export 100% of the
profits, and then appoint all the officials in the government? Would the
nationalism of Americans who rose up and fought be terrorists?
Think about it people.
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