THE NEWSLETTER

Weekend Madman

Friday-Sunday, October 14-16, 2005



"Dougie-Boy's"  Quote Up First

"Well he can't help it if he fell in love,"
-Don Imus to "G"reed "O"ver "P"eople party candidate for NJ Governor, Doug Forrester, referring to Senator Jon Corzine (D-NJ)

"Well then he shouldn't be running for public office."
-"Dougie-Boy" Forrester

Leave it to the Republicans to make Love a political issue.  Now, we know that Dougie-Boy (as "G"lobal "W"arming Bush probably calls him) was referring to Senator Jon Corzine's relationship with Carla Katz, president of Communications Workers of America Local 1034 in New Jersey.

I guess that in the "G"reed "O"ver "P"eople party's New United States of America we're going to have to get the permission of people like "Dougie-Boy" or "Georgie-Boy" before we fall in love. That must be the "Freedom" they're always screaming about. Maybe we can have a "Department of Love" or something of that nature that "G"lobal "W"arming Bush could put a crony in as the "Secretary of Love". We can appoint Jerry Falwell or Pat Robertson to the position and maybe apply a hefty license fee in order to go out on a date. Only the rich, of course, would be able to afford a marriage license. That'll take care of the budget deficit.

But while Forrester is "faking the moral high ground on Love," perhaps he could explain why he loved the GOP so much that he repeatedly gave its members too much money in donations. In fact, maybe Dougie-Boy could explain why he had to take back two separate $1,000 donations to the Republican party. Maybe Forrester could explain $11 million in campaign contributions from his Insurance Company to his New Jersey Campaign, which is against the law. Dougie-Boy's excuse that the insurance company is based in DC, even though it does the lion's share of its business in New Jersey just doesn't wash.

"Although Forrester's Heartland Fidelity Insurance Company was not regulated by the state, it did business with Mr. Forrester's other company, Benecard Services, which sells pharmacy benefit insurance and is therefore considered part of an industry regulated by the state." It was "also determined that both Benecard and Heartland did business in New Jersey."
-New Jersey Department of Banking and Insurance's Acting Commissioner Donald Bryan, as reported in The New York Times, September 1, 2005

 

How may holes are in that glass house of yours, "Dougie-Boy"?

-Noah Greenberg



Madman Reviews Judith Miller

"W.M.D. - I got it totally wrong, The analysts, the experts and the journalists who covered them - we were all wrong. If your sources are wrong, you are wrong. I did the best job that I could."
-New York Times reporter Judith Miller

"Miss Run-Amok" as Miller called herself, referring to her ability to work alone, now seemingly admits that she was just the far end of the loudspeaker known as the Bush-Rove propaganda machine.

Miller was told by I. Scooter Libby, Vice President Dick "Go <F---> Yourself" Cheney's chief of staff that Ambassador Joe Wilson's wife works for the C.I.A.'s Winpac, a unit that specializes in Weapons of Mass Destruction an nuclear non-proliferation. Two things bother me about this: First, Miller stated that she thought Wilson's wife was an analyst, not an operative. A real CYA moment if ever there was one. Any real journalist would have checked her sources and found out that Mrs. Wilson was, and is an operative. Second, Miller had the name "Valerie Flame" in her notes instead of Valerie Plame. You'd think that Miller would have at least checked that out.

"Valerie Plame, is an agency operative on weapons of mass destruction."
-Robert Novak, from his July 14, 2003 column

"I have strong elbows, but I'm not a dope."
-Miller, referring to her "Run-Amok" line

You might or might not be a dope, Ms. Miller, but you were certainly "duped." Your "reporting" was nothing more than a lazy or burnt-out journalist's ability to re-write White House lies as self-serving statements and then passing them off as "news", finally, reporting them in the most widely read and trusted newspaper in the world. You have single-handedly turned the New York Times motto from, "All the new that's fit to print" to "All the news that fits."

Everyone who writes for this little newsletter (Note From a Madman) writes with originality and reports the truth. You'd think that the New York Times' Judith Miller could do the same.

Judith Miller Responds to Judith Miller
or "How to Read Between Judith Miller's Lines"


MILLER: ...well before (Ambassador Joe) Wilson published his critique (in The new York Times, July, 2003), (Vice President Dick Cheney's Chief of Staff I. Scooter) Libby told me that Mr. Wilson's wife (Valerie Plame) may have worked on unconventional weapons at the C.I.A.
MADMAN: May have? If there was ever an invitation for an inquisitive journalist to find out more, this was it. The problem that Libby faced was that Judith Miller was not "inquisitive." Having seemingly gotten lazy, Miller was now used to reporting by re-writing Bush administration press releases and strategically leaked memos.

MILLER: Mr. Libby sought from the beginning, before Mr. Wilson's name became public, to insulate his boss from Mr. Wilson's charges.

MILLER: I went to jail instead, to protect my source - Mr. Libby - because he had not communicated to me his personal and voluntary permission to speak.
MADMAN: Let's remember that Libby was not a whistle-blower. The release of Ms. Plame's identity was pure retribution and a warning to others not to cross the Bush administration.

MILLER: I recalled Mr. Libby's frustration and anger about what he called 'selective leaking' by the C.I.A."
MILLER: "He (Libby) told me that the agency was engaged in a "hedging strategy" to protect itself in case no weapons were found in Iraq."
LIBBY as reported by Miller: The C.I.A. "took it upon itself to try and figure out more" by sending a "clandestine guy (Joe Wilson)" to Niger to investigate.
MADMAN: Wilson was a former ambassador to Niger with inside high-level contacts in the African nation. One wonders what Libby would have wanted the C.I.A. to do in order to confirm the Niger report.

NICHOLAS D. KRISTOF from The New York Times, as reported by Miller: Mr. Wilson had been sent to Niger "at the behest" of Mr. Cheney's office.
LIBBY as reported by Miller: Veep didn't know of Joe Wilson. Veep never knew what he (Wilson) did or what was said. Agency (C.I.A.) did not report to us."
MADMAN: Someone's lying.

KRISTOF (October 11, 2003): The leak risked the security of all (C.I.A.) operatives who had used Brewster-Jennings as cover, as well as of all assets ever seen with Mrs. Wilson. Unwitting sources will now realize that they were supplying the C.I.A. with information, and even real agents may fear exposure and vanish.
LARRY JOHNSON, a former C.I.A. operative and Republican who voted for George W. Bush: 'Here's a woman who put her life on the line. 'But unlike a Navy seal or a marine, she didn't have a gun to fight back. All she had to protect her was her cover.''
MADMAN: How much money did this cost US? How many lives?

MILLER: Mr. Libby raised the subject of Mr. Wilson's wife for the first time. I wrote in my notes, inside parentheses, "Wife works in bureau (referring to the C.I.A., not the F.B.I.)?"

MILLER: What was evident, I told the grand jury, was Mr. Libby's anger that Mr. Bush might have made inaccurate statements because the C.I.A. failed to share doubts about the Iraq intelligence."

MILLER: Mr. Libby requested that he be identified only as a "former Hill staffer."
PATRICK J. FITZGERALD, Special Counsel: Did Mr. Libby explain this request?
MILLER: No, I don't recall, I replied. But I said I assumed Mr. Libby did not want the White House to be seen as attacking Mr. Wilson.
MILLER: Mr. Libby then proceeded through a lengthy and sharp critique of Mr. Wilson.
MADMAN: Hiding one's identity can be one of many admissions of guilt. Otherwise, why wouldn't Libby want to be identified?

MILLER, from her notes: (Wilson's) Wife works at Winpac (Referring to the C.I.A. unit "Weapons Intelligence, Non-Proliferation, and Arms Control", that analyzes the spread of unconventional weapons).
MILLER: I believed that this was the first time I had heard that Mr. Wilson's wife worked for Winpac.

LIBBY, as reported by Miller, in a letter: The public report of every other reporter's testimony makes clear that they did not discuss Ms. Plame's name or identity with me.
MILLER: The letter had surprised me because it might be perceived as an effort by Mr. Libby to suggest that I, too, would say we had not discussed Ms. Plame's identity. Yet my notes suggested that we had discussed her job.
MADMAN: Sounds to me like a "suggestion" to Miller by Libby that she lie to the prosecutor and the grand Jury. or maybe it was just a "subliminal suggestion."

-Noah Greenberg



Prepared Spontaneity

"I'm going to assure you this: that so long as I'm the president, we're never going to back down, we're never going to give in, we'll never accept anything less than total victory."
-"G"lobal "W"arming Bush to ten soldiers of the army's 42d Infantry Division, and an Iraqi officer, via a teleconference to Tikrit, Iraq

Staged. Just like everything else the Bush administration does, this "impromptu chat" (that's how the Bushies described it) was staged. The answers by the soldiers, like the questions asked by Bush, were prepared (too bad these guy couldn't be this prepared for Katrina). There was no fear that a soldier would actually speak his mind, as was the case of Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld when he was cornered by Army Spc. Thomas Wilson, a Tennessee National Guardsman who complained of having to "scrounge" to armor vehicles. The Bushies weren't going to take that chance.

How staged was this teleconference? Check out this quote:

"I'm very impressed that the Iraqi government has continued to work to have a constitution that attracts Sunnis and Shiites and Kurds. They've worked hard to get a constitution, and now the people of Iraq are going to get to vote once again on a constitution in this case. And I want to thank you for providing the security necessary."
-GW Bush

That wasn't a question for the troops, it was a speech for the cameras. That's why we call Georgie-Boy "President Photo-Op."

"The president seemed slightly uncomfortable himself, fiddling constantly with his earpiece, perhaps put off by an echo that could be clearly heard over the video hookup."
-From The New York Times

An echo? Perhaps GW never actually heard the crap spewing from his lips.

"were (the soldiers) coached in terms of who would answer what question and how they would pass the microphone."
-A reporter's question to White House Press Secretary Scott McClellan

You see, the "brainiacs" at the White House had left the satellite feed on prior to the President's "Impromptu chat" and anyone with a satellite feed, which was just about every news organization in attendance, was able to view (the Bushies said steal) the feed. The pre-presidential chat was a lecture by Allison Barber, A Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense. Ms. Barber actually used the word "script", as in "don't deviate from the script."

"Who are we going to give that (question) to?"
-Ms. Barber, as repeated by Geoff Earle of the Ultra-Conservative New York Post

Yep. When you prepare and then assign a particular question to a questioner, that would be "scripting."

"high tech photo-op,"
-Senator Ted Kennedy (D-MA), describing the Bush teleconference

"Thank you for everything, sir. Thank you very much for everything - I like you."
-Iraqi officer, Sgt. Maj. Akeel, who was the only Iraqi soldier present at the teleconference

Well that certainly doesn't sound scripts at all, now does it?

-Noah Greenberg


THE LAVENDER TUBE: PROOF

It's been quite a week on the tube. It isn't just the wonderfully satisfying new fall season that has our VCR and TiVo working overtime–it's the pleasure of watching the Republicans crash and burn before our very eyes like a scene from a bad action movie.

There's the simple joy that comes from watching the daily TV poll numbers reflect the nation's dissatisfaction with all things Bush. According to ABC, NBC and CNN, Bush now has the lowest approval rating of any president in his second term since polls have been taken.

Then there's the added pleasure of watching the Republicans get caught in web after web of their own making. TV reporters and pundits alike were positively gleeful in their reportage of Karl Rove being a "suspect" in the Plamegate affair on October 14th. That hand-rubbing satisfaction followed the embarrassment of the previous day's little lapse from the White House when Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense Allison Barber got caught coaching a handful of soldiers in Tikrit prior to their "impromptu" interview with President Bush.

In what ABC and NBC called "the dress rehearsal," Barber was taped not just giving the soldiers the questions the President would ask them, but telling them when to pause, how to respond and generally being stage mom to this small band of soldiers who was supposed to sell the war that more than 60 percent of Americans now believe the President is handling badly, for Bush. Since two of the four networks led with the story and CNN had covered it as it was happening earlier in the day, the result was anything but positive for the Bush team.
This gaffe followed by a day the bizarre TV news conference declaration by Bush that Harriet Miers, his beleaguered choice to replace Sandra Day O'Connor on the U.S. Supreme Court (we just *loved* Rachel Dratch's portrayal of her on *Saturday Night Live*–she absolutely nailed her), is a good fundamentalist Christian.

Uh, didn't the Prez say of now-Chief Justice John Roberts that *his* religion (Catholic, an unpopular choice among Bush's fundamentalist base, particularly as there were already three Catholics on the Court) was irrelevant? Even conservatives were scratching their heads over this one. As we said, crashing and burning, everywhere one looks.

Another kicker for the Bush team has been ABC's stunning series of reports all last week and this week on *Good Morning America,* *World News Tonight,* *Prime Time Live,* *20/20* and *Nightline* detailing the lax security in protecting America's nuclear reactors or the nuclear laboratories situated in colleges nationwide. ABC's senior investigative reporter, Brian Ross, did an Emmy and Peabody-winning turn in his investigation of just how easily a dirty bomb could be exploded in some of the nation's major cities or how nuclear materials could be stolen in some sleepy little towns that shouldn't even *have* nuclear materials on hand, like at Reed University in Oregon which doesn't even have a nuclear program.

The most terrifying of Ross's investigations involved his sending two-person teams of fresh-faced and mostly female journalism-school graduates into various college nuclear facilities. Nearly all of them found not just easy access–open doors day and night, no security guards on site–but where there were actually people in attendance, these undercover reporters found they could talk their way right into the nuclear pool grounds and stare right into the nuclear pool–where if they were terrorists, instead of reporters, they could have dropped an explosive device and showered the surrounding area with nuclear material for miles.

All of this scary reality show was caught on hidden camera. None of these students had their bags searched, none was asked to identify themselves and several were even given floor plans of the reactor sites, which ABC blurred on camera for the security that no one at the sites themselves had protected.

In scenes straight out of *The Simpson's,*when Ross confronted the hierarchy of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission about ABC's findings, the NRC's most common answer was, "Well, we'll have to look into that."

Cold comfort to Americans who thought that the Bush Administration had put terrorism front-and-center. Following on the heels of the Katrina disaster proving the Office of Homeland Security isn't prepared for a natural disaster, let alone a terrorist attack, people might want to start stocking their own underground bunkers *now.* Seeing how close a truck could come–within 50 feet–of the nuclear reactor at MIT in downtown Boston, with no security details to stop it, was truly alarming. But more alarming was the "who cares?" shrug from the NRC in response.

Another Bush Administration blooper occurred at a press conference October 14th when White House press secretary called veteran reporter Helen Thomas, who has covered every administration since Hoover, soft on terrorism because she was asking probing questions, as she tends to do. ABC's senior White House correspondent, Terry Moran, who had also reported on the Barber glitch, came to Thomas's defense, gentleman that he is. But it was another black eye in the face of the gang that seems incapable of getting anything right–and has begun making all their mistakes in prime time, live, before the TV cameras.

Add to this catalogue of errors, the shocker of the various TV news reports featuring Pakistani President Pervez Musharif complaining not just about the lack of response from the U.S. to the dreadful earthquake tragedy outside of Islamabad, but Musharif's secondary comments that the Bush Administration hadn't even been able to take care of his own people in New Orleans after Katrina struck.

*Ouch.* And this from Bush's big *ally* in the region.

Speaking of Pakistan, why has the American news coverage of the disaster in Pakistan in which more than 30,000 are known dead and countless more could die from injuries and disease been so thin? Are the images from Katrina still so fresh that Americans can't be shown someone else's tragedy?

When the tsunami struck in the Pacific last December, that disaster was the lead story on the news for several weeks and well-known reporters from every network were on hand, as were Diane Sawyer, co-host of ABC's *Good Morning America,*and NBC's *Today* show vet Anne Curry, doing human interest pieces in the disaster zone. Why isn't there similar coverage of the Pakistani earthquake, particularly as the country has been ranked repeatedly as America's most important ally in the region in the war against terror. It's a question that does demand some answers.

Another question we'd like the answer to: How much money did the Bush family *personally* contribute to Katrina relief? We saw Bush attempting to hammer some nails into some wood for Habitat for Humanity last week on CNN. (Jimmy Carter he's not.) The late night comedians *loved* that one. We liked Jimmy Kimmel best–he stripped away the CNN crawl to reveal Bush hammering at Fisher-Price-style play nails in primary colors. Their graphics team *is* the best.

But we ask the question because our gal Oprah contributed $10 million of *her* personal fortune. Now granted, she's the wealthiest woman in America, but shouldn't the Bushes, who are rolling in it, particularly after all they've saved in the big Bush tax cuts, have given at least ten percent of what Oprah gave? After all, you don't have to be from Mississippi as Oprah is to contribute, do you? We know *we* contributed and *we* didn't grow up there.

Oprah did an excellent piece on poverty in America with CNN's Anderson Cooper on October 13th (check out her website, Oprah.com, if you missed it), using the Katrina disaster as her vantage point. Cooper, who did some of the best reporting from the region (even if the conservatives later called him "shrill" for demanding that someone go to the New Orleans Convention Center and *feed people*), put it all in perspective: One-third of Americans have no savings. The majority of Americans are, to quote Cooper, "one paycheck away from homelessness if there's a disaster." Sobering to all. Perhaps someone could send a tape of the show to the President?

Plus Oprah has a new campaign to catch pedophiles the police can't or won't catch. (We wish she'd take on the ones wearing vestments in the Catholic Church; the Philadelphia and Los Angeles Archdioceses–the most corrupt, most arrogant and both still filled with the most pedophile priests still working with kids of both genders, although boys tend to be more available–really need Oprah.) Apparently Oprah, who was herself a victim of sexual abuse as a child, is able to capture known pedophiles and turn them over to police just by doing a TV show on October 12th. She has another coming up next week–stay tuned. (And don't worry about queer fear–unlike, say, the Vatican, Oprah knows the difference between a pedophile and a gay man.)

Speaking of *Law &Order,* we have to say how very pleased we are that after three seasons of dismal shows, *L&O: Criminal Intent* has decided to try something new. Like a team that works. Eleven of the season's 22 shows will feature Chris North (formerly Mr. Big of *Sex and the City* and a star of the original *L&O*) and Annabella Sciorra. We can only weep with relief at a reprieve from the one-trick pony of Vincent D'Onofrio being the only viable member of the cast.

Speaking of viability, does ABC's*Commander-in-Chief* really pull in the ratings they claim? Are there that many Republican women watching TV in Prime Time when the should be home-schooling or going to their fundamentalist churches mid-week like Harriet Miers? We keep watching this train wreck for the same reason we watch *The O'Reilly Factor*–to see what the other side is up to. But we find Mackenzie Allen absolutely loathsome and her Republican-in-Independent's-clothing utterly craven.

Like NBC's ratings dog *E-Ring, *C-in-C* oozes Republican ideology from every vapid pore. Last week's creepy episode in which the drug war is portrayed as the main war to be fought in America exemplifies how out of touch both the show and Republican ideologues are with what's happening on the streets of America. We would like to think the first woman president would take on poverty and health care first–particularly as close to 80 percent of those in the U.S. living in poverty and without health care are women and children. Are drugs the major issue in America today? Republicans think so, but real Americans have more pressing issues of which drugs are only a symptom.
When Mackenzie Allen called for a coup in the pseudo-Columbia of the show–kind of like what George Bush did in Haiti a few years ago–it was obvious where things were going. We'll keep watching so you don't have to. After all, you have so much Bushwatch to TiVo. Stay tuned.

-Victoria A. Brownworth
copyright c 2005 San Francisco Bay Area Reporter, Inc.


Once upon a time there was a war called Nam

Al Homstead, retired Air Force major, had volunteered for three combat tours during Lyndon Johnson's escalation of that war and brought some information home, as he happened to live through it. Al flew F-4's. They were the star player planes during that conflict. They were fighters and could carry some bombs as well.

The instrument panels for those planes were manufactured by a company owned by the Johnson's, and was specifically in Lady Bird's name, who was Lyndon Johnson's wife.

The Air Force lost a plane and usually the pilot about three times per month during Al's tours of duty. Surviving pilots were often taken by the Viet Cong as prisoners of war. Some of those guys are still around.

Al never crashed a plane, but did find out with some fiddling in the hangers with the mechanics, that every fourth instrument panel had a fatal flaw. They started checking the planes when delivered from the factories in Texas and soon learned that the first thing they should do was strip out the instrument panels, before any flights, and rebuild them, eliminating built-in fatal flaws.

25% were built to fail. Every time a plane failed, the Johnson financial empire was furthered, though families across the nation of America were stripped of a son or father, a directly placed $3 million of tax dollars into the contract Lady Bird's factories had with the federal government to replace the planes.

This is a first hand account, from the guy who found the problem, was never publicly credited for obvious reasons, and later in his career, was on the team that re-invented the ejection seat of fighter planes, saving many pilots from death by ejection rather than by direct crash.

Death by ejecting had been a recurring problem in the high performance history of aviation.

Recently, a certain former pilot from WWII learned of this story of colossal, cold blooded, greed and flatly stated, he didn't believe it. He had also not believed at the time (70's) that the Viet Nam war was being fought for individual billionization of financial empires in the US, though every college student in America knew it, protested it, and even died for it (Kent State)

This same man also believes that Cindy Sheehan is in the grip of liberals, and that liberals are evil. He believes that it doesn't matter that her son died for another greedy man's attempt to billionize his financial empire, that honor is served when a mother's son dies in uniform, fighting the enemies of our nation, and that the conflict in Iraq is the inception of the Third World War.

That guy in the White House who keeps insisting he is the President, by all accounts, also keeps insisting he is, by keeping 150,000 of our military in Iraq, 'spreading' democracy. Huh??


Those people in Iraq, would for the most part be very relieved to have electricity and clean water, haven't read a constitution, and think by now that democracy means guys in uniform shoving automatic weapons in faces, and breaking down doors

Other people in Iraq just want the Americans off their land, because they think Americans are something called 'infidels' and that their presence is somehow, unholy. How they can believe their land or themselves are holy to begin with is incomprehensible, but, they think what they think, just as adamantly as Bush thinks what he thinks, if he thinks.

(45 minutes away from 'nucular' strike)
(Iraq has bought yellowcake in Niger)
(WMD's, we've got to get the WMD's)
(We don't need no stinking secure borders)
(Mission Accomplished)
(We will get Bin Laden)
(It doesn't matter if we get Bin Laden)


(Karl Rove's real job is to make up multiple choice, interchangeable, generic lies for press conferences and speeches, don't ya know)

Maybe the WWII pilot is right. Maybe this is WWIII. The enemy is an ideology. Command says so. And that makes who? the enemy? It was Bush, the contested President of a sovereign nation, a free Republic, the United States of America, complete with Constitution and Bill of Rights, Commander in Chief, who said, 'you are either with 'us' or against democracy. Huh?????.

In reality, it probably doesn't matter so much who is President. What matters is that the Republic, the Constitution, STANDS - -and enemies of that, foreign or domestic, are the only, actual foe. And knowing that, is what matters, and what will keep the mother's sons and daughters alive.

-Rhian



In response to, "So where the heck is Bin Laden who did attack us on 9/11? Why aren't we hearing about actions taken against Al Qaeda? What does Iraq have to do with any of this?", Pat Thompson writes:

During all the hurricane news in early September, the White House announced that the hunt for Bin Laden had been called off. They just slipped that one in. If anyone took the time, or knew the history, to compare these terrorists with the nuclear weapons, the hydrogen and atomic bombs, ballistic missiles pointed at every city in America by the Soviet Union, which could be activated at a moment's notice -- there just is no comparison with our current problem, which is basically law enforcement and better international relations -- i.e.. get out of Arab countries. We'd be much safer as a nation if they cleaned up the old nuclear mess, as there are still nuclear weapons in former Soviet Republics, where there is more and more unrest. Yes, 3000 people died on 9/11 -- but good, solid security screening of airline passengers could have prevented that. El Al has never had such an event, because no one gets on an airliner in Israel without being carefully screened. Our ports and borders need protection. Iraq has nothing to do with it. The main issue for this administration is FEAR. Keep the people afraid. These neo-cons use fear with such precision, it is like Pavlov's dogs. They can make people salivate, or quiver, at a moment's notice.



In response to, "Laura Bush's sexism charge 'is horribly disappointing and the sort of thing I normally expect from left-wingers.'" by Jonah Goldberg of The National Review web blog, Pat Thompson writes:

Jonah Goldberg has only one credential -- his mother was the "advisor" to Linda Tripp, who taped Monica's discussions about her love affair President Clinton. They are right wing nuts with no morals. During the cable news feeding frenzy that went on for two years, when they really scraped the bottom of the barrel for people who could talk ad infinitem about oral sex, Jonah and his mother got to be cable TV personalities.



In response to Robert Scardapane's, "(Corzine) will fund basic research into fetal stem cells. (New Jersey) should be a leader in this area given the concentration of life science savvy people," Pat Thompson writes:

Robert is so right. New Jersey could be, along with perhaps New York, Massachusetts, Illinois, and other blue states which are prosperous, the "new America". While the red states of the "old Confederacy" become like third world countries, fundamentalist states.



In response to, "Many people feel that
God speaks to them," Pat Thompson writes:

Yes, and a lot of them are locked up in mental institutions, or wandering the streets, preaching on street corners. Many people speak, pray to
God. Not too many think that God speaks to them. This guy may be coming unglued. Or he was never tied too tight to begin with. Alcohol harms the brain; many have referred to him as a "dry drunk". Having all of that power has gone to his none too bright head. If only the things he wants to do didn't involve dropping any bombs, and didn't just insure that his cronies (his bosses) got what they wanted -- low taxes, no estate tax, no corporate taxes, no capital gains taxes, no bid contracts, no accountability....What one good thing has he done for the average person in this country?

And, in response to, "There is something disquieting about a President who claims
God is speaking directly to him. I do not think any American President ever made that claim," Pat also writes:

To paraphrase Lincoln, rather than praying that
God is on our side, let us hope that we are on God's side.



In response to New York City's well-timed terror-threat that wasn't... or was it?, Pat Thompson writes:

How many points did (NYC Mayor Mike) Bloomberg go up after this farce played out? He gained about 20 percentage points. It was a great show -- filled the cable TV news -- while Tom Delay's indictment, Rove's testifying, Bush's low ratings, etc. were pushed off the air.



In response to, "drafting the typical 18 year old prom queens (girls) and treating them as if they were on the same level as 18/19 year old boys, is going to get a lot of the boys killed in combat," Pat Thompson writes:

All of this is true -- I would not have made a very good soldier as a young woman, but I did make a very good mother, - and I sure as hell wasn't offering my children for cannon fodder! Neither my boys, nor my girl. As I've suggested before, if there is a true national emergency, put us grandmothers out there. We'd fight like tigers to protect our country, our children and grandchildren. We don't do wars of aggression or invasions, however. What a waste of other people's children, when this administration lies to justify invading another country. Georgie's hands sure are dripping with blood.


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-Noah Greenberg