Weekend Madman

Friday-Sunday, June 8-10, 2005




Media Madman in the Lead
Russ Limbaugh implied that 40 people dead and 150 seriously wounded wasn't such a big deal. He said:

"That's, ah, the mayor of London, Ken Livingstone. Very powerful, excellent. And it was such a great contrast to what we're seeing in our own media this morning with the hand-wringing I was speaking about and the "Oh, woe is us" and "Oh, what did we do to cause this?" and "Oh, does this mean we're going to get hit?" and "Oh ..." It's like I said -- 40 people dead, 150 seriously wounded, 1,000 wounded, out of over 1 million people in that transit tube. It's not a successful terrorist attack, folks."


Limbaugh proceeded to accuse Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-CA), Democrats, and critics of the prisoner treatment at Abu Ghraib of "aiding and abetting" the terrorists, adding that Osama bin Laden "sounds like John Kerry". He said:

"When bin Laden talks about the "evils" of the United States and why it must be attacked -- it sounds like John Kerry in his 2004 presidential campaign. When whoever did this in London explains why they did it -- sounds like any liberal criticizing a successful capitalist country to me. So when you want to talk about, Sen. Boxer, the insurgents are winning the propaganda war, my question is, "Who's helping them? Who's assisting them? Who's going ape and bananas over Abu Ghraib and Gitmo? Who is aiding and abetting them? Who, who is it when they speak in this country -- the terrorists sit back and laugh themselves silly?" It's you, Sen. Boxer, and members of your party. "


This is a prime example of the rubbish coming out of the GOP noise machine this morning in response to the tragic events in London. I don't want to demonize all Republicans as there are reasonable ones. The reasonable people in the GOP should be speaking out against this sort of trash talk.

I can point out several other examples from this morning. The tone of GOP callers into CSPAN's Washington Journal was downright ugly. I was going to upchuck if one more person echoed Brian Kilmeade of Fox News who said "I think that (the London attacks) works to our advantage, in the Western world's advantage, for people to experience something like this together".

I failed to understand the pointless crassness of the right wing echo machine. I just finished watching the BBC on CSPAN. The people of Britain went about their business today in a dignified way. I was struck that their media did not partake in stupid drum beating, political posturing and fear mongering that exists in our own media. If we could only replace Fox News with the BBC!

-Robert Scardapane

More Media Madman in the Lead

From the July 6 broadcast of Westwood One's The Radio Factor with Bill O'Reilly, guest-hosted by Gibson:
GIBSON: By the way, just wanted to tell you people, we missed -- the International Olympic Committee missed a golden opportunity today. If they had picked France, if they had picked France instead of London to hold the Olympics, it would have been the one time we could look forward to where we didn't worry about terrorism. They'd blow up Paris, and who cares?

From the "My Word" segment of the July 7 edition of Fox News' The Big Story with John Gibson:
GIBSON: The bombings in London: This is why I thought the Brits should let the French have the Olympics -- let somebody else be worried about guys with backpack bombs for a while.

This is not only vulgar jingoism but idiotic reporting. How about simply saying that America's thoughts are with the people of Britain and leave it at that. But no, that's not good enough for the Fox News grim reaper reporters. They need to politicize tragedy. These people are beyond reprehensible.

-Robert Scardapane

I'm just surprised that people are surprised by the reaction to the London Bombings in the Right (Wrong) Wing Media. These are the same people who find nothing wrong with equating those who disagree with their ideological point of view as nazis and communists. Let's remember what Rush Limbaugh called working women in America - "Feminizis"!. And let's not forget that big, stupid Rick Santorum quote: "The audacity of some members to stand up and say 'How dare you break this rule. It's the equivalent of Adolph Hitler in 1942 saying, 'I'm in Paris. How dare you invade me. How dare you bomb my city? It's mine.' "

Did Rush Limbaugh, Bill O'Reilly or John Gibson tell their loyal listeners in Oklahoma City that their losses "really didn't matter"? These guys make me sick too, Robert. -NG

Homeland Priorities... Finally

Michael Chertoff, the new Department of Homeland Security secretary wants to change the department's priorities.

Maybe Mr. Chertoff wants to stop protecting cows in Wyoming and start protecting the people of New York, Boston, Chicago and other major metropolitan areas with mass transportation systems that actually need the help.

After an "exhaustive review", Chertoff is going to start focus spending on nuclear and biological attacks.

So I guess that means screw the subway system in New York and forget about bridge and tunnel security.

"I wouldn't make a policy decision based on a single attack."
-Chertoff, after the London attacks

Really now... what would it take for you to make a policy decision that protects Americans? Every time someone flies a kite within 10 miles of the White House, everybody that has a government badge gets thrown into an underground bunker while the rest of US get to ask "huh?"

"The environment changed from a month ago. The good news is he (Chertoff) has everyone's attention. The bad news is that everyone wants to play in the sandbox."
-James Jay Carafano, a senior fellow at the ultra-conservative and Bush-Boot-Licking Heritage Foundation

Its a Republican dominated House, Senate and President. Its up to them to stop "playing in the sandbox and get the money where it has to go.

What, precisely, has changed? An ally of ours, Spain, got bombed a year ago. London got bombed last week. Are we now going to pay more attention because another Anglo-dominated country and ally gets attacked? I guess the loss of life in Spain didn't bother the Heritage Foundation or the Department of Homeland Security because they speak another language. What will it take to finally make these self-centered globalist "G"reed "O"ver "P"eople people start paying attention to what is really important... the protection of the Citizens of the United States and our allies.

It's almost 4 years after the terrorist attacks of 9/11, spearheaded by 15 Saudi nationals and we have yet to come up with a way to protect our cities and the millions who live in them.

-Noah Greenberg

More on China


Since China is quickly moving up to being one of our largest creditors, and since supply side economics requires borrowing big time, we can look forward to more and more leverage exerted upon us by the Chinese Government.

The reckless greed of Corporate America is handing the Chinese an economic victory which they could not obtain politically or militarily. In their mad rush for profit they are hemorrhaging our wealth to the Chinese, and crying all of the way to the bank.

The workers are crying for work? "Let them eat Chinese lines of credit".

-Jack Kashinsky

For those who keep saying "it is better to fight them (equating terrorists with insurgents) in Iraq", I say:

. Did fighting them in Iraq help the people of London yesterday?
. Perhaps, if the
British spent money improving homeland security instead of fighting in Iraq, they could have prevented the event. Money is not limitless so it must be spent wisely.
. The terrorists may prove to be home-grown! They could have grown up in
Britain and were drawn into the extremist philosophy. If so, how does fighting them "over there" help?

I have no doubts there are dangerous people in this world. We need to be smart about fighting them. Iraq simply was not a terrorist focal point yet Afghanistan was. So what did President Bush do? He pulled the troops out of Afghanistan and sent them to Iraq - that simply makes no strategic sense.

By the way, President Bush immediately conflated terrorism with dictatorship in an interview he gave outside of the G8 summit yesterday. This is hardly surprising as the White House did that throughout the 2004 Presidential campaign. I sure hope that the attacks in London do not become yet another politicized Democrat versus Republican issue. I don't see how that helps preventing future events.


-Robert Scardapane

On our illustrious misleader:

Saddam and the Baath party, whatever else they were, or did, were the ONLY effective force keeping al Qaeda out of Iraq.

The Shiite Fundamentalists were unable to get a toehold in Iraq until The Lipper, (you know, the one who talks to
God), in his infinite wisdom, not only opened the floodgates, but actually gave them a sense of legitimacy among many Iraqis.

You have to give credit where it is due, and in all fairness, the Lipper did bring people together. He helped unite the Terrorists and the guerrilla Sunnis in their mutual hatred of the US.

Another credit should go to the "anointed one". He has, by destabilizing Iraq, also opened the door for the Iranian Hezbollah to succeed in gaining influence in parts of Iraq.

All three of these groups have different agendas, but one common!

So, let's not hear any more badmouthing's against the Great Uniter.

Actually I defended him the other day. Several people were actually claiming that Bush wasn't even fit to live with pigs. I stepped right up to the plate and responded: "Hey, you can't talk about our president this way, he most certainly is."

-Jack Kashinsky

In response to Bob Geldof and knighthood, Eddie Konczal writes:

Bob Geldof was knighted - sort of.

"Geldof has received many awards for this work, including an honorary knighthood from Queen Elizabeth II. As a non-British subject, the Irish-born Geldof was legally precluded from being awarded a full knighthood and use of the title "Sir"."

I agree he deserves the Nobel Peace Prize!


I stand corrected, Eddie -NG

In response to the Valerie Plame affair, Phil Ebersole writes:

You said you refrain from criticizing Judith Miller because she did not disclose that Valerie Plame was a CIA agent. In fact, neither Matt Cooper nor Judith Miller reported that Valerie Plame was a CIA agent. Robert Novak was the only journalist who disclosed that secret information.

We can guess, but don't know for a fact, exactly what Cooper and Miller were asked to testify about, or why they don't choose to disclose their sources.

Lew Warden writes:

My, oh, my, what a love feast you two lads are having!

Undercover agent? Donít be ridiculous. This ladyís undercover activities were confined to under the covers with her rogue husband who went to Africa to do a political hatchet job. Did it ever occur to you that a lot of people in the CIA, who didnít agree with what her husband (and inferentially his wife) were doing to damage this countryís image, could have blown the whistle? If you were really upset about this you would be calling for Novakís prosecution. You certainly have enough Senators and Representatives to issue that clarion call if they really cared about it. Or donít you want to irritate the press?

You pious, hypocritical Liberal Lilies are the only people in this country who give a damn about this contrived issue, which went even the classified ad pages months ago. And you yourselves are quick to use the fruits of unlawful disclosure of official secrets when it suits your purpose.

Why donít you get on with the real problems that are destroying this country and contribute something to their solutions? All you are doing now is gratifying your own narrow political interests. You ought to be glad someone blew the whistle on this gal and her husband. We need more whistle blowers, even when the Dems are in office Ė or perhaps particularly when the Dems are in office. Why donít you demand an investigation of who killed JFK, the original one? And investigate why LBJ escalated the Vietnam War that JFK got us into in the first place? Or why Clinton didnít grab Osama when he had a chance? Or why Clinton murdered all those innocent Iraqi civilians when he launched his missile attacks? Or how and why Clinton armed China with our missile guidance technology? There are plenty of fingers to point all around, and itís about time the public was made aware of it, all of it.

Get a life.

More Thoughts About London

Some thoughts in addition to yours on the London terror bombings: I too feel for the people of London, and had a personal worry about my stepdaughter and granddaughter who live in London, until at least she called this afternoon. They were fine. But why is there not the same level of horror and publicity when ten's of innocent civilians are killed by an American bomb in Afghanistan? The comment from the bush club is that the terrorists shouldn't have had women and children in their camp. And no publicity given to the article published in the very respected British medical journal Lancet, fall 2004, that gave a well-researched estimate that 100,000 Iraqis had been killed as a direct result of the attack and invasion. Are British and American lives more valuable than Afghan and Iraqi lives?


And Lew Warden Adds:

Noah, I know you are trying to get your mind around events such as just occurred in London and before in Spain and the US, but your conclusions will never make any sense as long as you start your analyses from such flawed premises.

How on earth can you possible rationalize that Bush is responsible for 9-11? Surely you must know that Islamic hatred of the US has been building for years, and under all administrations since WW-II. (Perhaps even earlier, although I donít have that detailed a grasp of Muslim history.) And surely you must know that such hatred has been fueled, if not initially fostered, by our uncritical support of Israel? You simply canít blame it on Bush or the Republicans if for no other reason than that such hatred was full blown during LBJís, Carterís, and Clintonís administrations, even as it existed during the intervening Republican administrations.

For the sake of your personal peace of mind, as well as any desire you may have to be politically successful, I suggest you dust off the long since moribund concept of ďthe Presidentís loyal opposition.Ē Undying hatred of your fellow-Americans is not a useful political hypothesis.

The deaths we and our enemies have suffered to date in the Middle East conflicts, although obviously far too many to be acceptable, are nothing compared with the deaths on both sides that occurred during the Vietnam War, which, I remind you again, was not all during Nixonís administration, but in fact started and were accelerated to their maximum intensity by LBJís misguided efforts to carry water on both shoulders. Face it, man, the same people in both parties are responsible for our present plight.


The bottom line is whether or not you choose to believe Richard Clark, William Cohen or any of the many others who testified before the 9/11 commission. I do. Whereas the 9/11 commission took great pains to not blame anyone in particular, the overwhelming tone of the hearings simply stated that the Bush administration ignored and underestimated that which shouldn't be underestimated. I know you consider yourself a "Republican without a party", but you are missing the boat on this one. -NG

And Robert Scardapane Adds:

My condolences to the people of Britain for this terrible tragedy. I absolutely refuse to politicize this event and condemn anyone that does. This event proves nothing except what we already know - there is terrorism in the world. It does not validate the pre-conceived attack on Iraq nor the post-war bumbling. As far as I am concerned, all investigations involving the Downing Street Memo and plot to maliciously expose a CIA agent's, Valerie Plame, identity must proceed. In addition, I am will not be silent about Iraq until I hear a sensible exit strategy. The President does not have a blank check from me.

Through the looking glass
by kid Oakland
Fri Jul 8th, 2005 at 13:40:04 PDT
(Another KO special from the diaries -- kos)

In times like these, it's important to keep one salient fact on the table at all times:

The ambitious, inflexible, small-minded prigs who currently run the United States government are wrong. They are:

wrong about Iraq
wrong about terror
wrong about what makes us safe
and they are wrong about what makes us strong

It is no surprise, however, that in the wake of the recent tragedy in London, that the GOP and the nattering, blathering nabobs who dominate our airwaves will tell us....with a straight face no less, and in the name of "spreading Democracy"...that we who disagree with them should simply shut up.

Interesting that.

I'm not going to shut up, and neither should you.

-From the Daily Kos - pretty much sums up what I felt this morning as I listened to one right wing nut after another spouting off -RJS

-Forwarded by Robert Scardapane

From the ThinkProgress web site:

The White House just released the transcript of todayís Gaggle.
For the fourth straight time since his lawyer admitted that Rove was one of Matt Cooperís sources, no member of the White House press corps asked a question about Roveís role. (And there are plenty of questions to ask.)

A major figure in the White House is deeply entangled in a major scandal. Why is the White House press corps ignoring the story?


There needs to be a full investigation of this scandal. Matt Cooper has named Rove as one source. Rove already testified to a grand jury that he knew nothing about the situation. I believe that is called PERJURY!
-Robert Scardapane


"It's evident that after New York, Madrid and London, Italy represents the most probable next objective of the terrorists. The time has come to begin to think also about our house, and to use the same resources currently committed in Iraq to prevent and combat possible attacks on our territory."
-Italian Prime Minister Berlusconi

Sounds like a plan! So, what's our exit strategy from Iraq. I don't want to hear "stay the course" ever again.

-Robert Scardapane

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-Noah Greenberg