Open thread

A new feature in our open threads, something I like to call “The Best of Goldy” (although it’s really just lazy recycling) in which I link to an old post from my gloried past, and then go off and do something useful like, you know, sleeping.

For my first installment I invite you into my wayback machine to a post from October 2004, back before I had much of an audience. In this post I meticulously fisk some court depositions in a lawsuit against the Great Canadian Gaming Corporation, the main financier of Initiative 892, Tim Eyman’s “Slots for Tots” initiative that went on to fail by 23-point margin. So what sort of ethical standards did Great Canadian promise to bring to its Washington state casinos?

But apart from the fraudulent Mexteam relationship, the undocumented cash disbursements, the profit skimming, the mob connections, and the loansharking, rape and illegal cigarette sales at B.C. casinos… Great Canadian is an upstanding corporate citizen, right?

For the answer to that and other questions, read: “Keep loansharks, prostitutes, drug dealers, mobsters, and Canadians out of our neighborhoods: Vote No on I-892!


  1. 1

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    “Unfortunately for Great Canadian … I’m not rational.”

    Even more unfortunately for Great Canadian, you’re not solvent either. Few things are more frustrating to a predatory corporate attorney than an insolvent SLAPP defendant.

  2. 2

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    See, Goldy? Being broke and unemployed isn’t all bad. There are advantages to being judgment-proof. It keeps the slimy lawyers away.

  3. 3

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    Of course, one of the main objections to expanding legal gambling is the kind of people that legalized gambling attracts. Gambling is a primary target of organized crime and, whether legal or not, is often accompanied by subsidiary operations such as prostitution and loan-sharking. None of this deterred Timmy from trying to inflict wide-open casino gambling and its ills on the citizens of Washington State. Why Eyman still has a shred of credibility with either the media or voters is a mystery.

  4. 4

    My Left Foot spews:


    Roger, it is the monkey suit he wears on occasion. Makes him look like Bush so the media covers him.

  5. 5

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    That’s especially so in view of the fact that Eyman is a bare-assed liar. He claimed his slot machine initiative would reduce property taxes by $400 million. That’s pure cockapoo. To show why, let’s do some Roger Rabbit Math.

    In Vegas or Atlantic City, the typical slot machine payout ratio is about 93% – 94%. Not because the casinos in those cities like operating on a gross profit margin of 6% – 7%, although they still make tons of money on that margin, but because below that payout ratio they lose customers. Slot players aren’t stupid; they a low payout ratio lessens their odds of winning, and the payout ratios generally become public knowledge via the internet and other sources. They probably have to be disclosed to state regulators, and from there it’s a pretty simple process to get the information.

    Tribal casinos typically pay less to their slot players; they may be below 90%. But let’s say that to compete against the tribal slots, the privately owned non-Indian casinos envisioned by Eyman and his bankrollers pay out at least 88%. Let’s say, further, that the state collects 25% of the gross profit as tax. Let’s see how much money Washington residents would have to feed into Eyman’s non-Indian slot machines to produce $400 million a year of slot machine tax revenue.

    $400,000,000 / .12 / .25 = $13.33 billion

    Divide that by 6.4 million Washington residents and what you get is that EVERY man, woman, and kid (including infants) in the state would have to feed, on average, $2083.33 a year into non-Indian slot machines. For a typical household consisting of dad, mom, and 2.4 kids, that works out to about $9,166 a year — every year, year after year.


    And what would Washington citizens get in return? Assuming the tax take WAS $400,000,000, each of the state’s approximately 2.7 million households would get, on average, $148.15 of property tax relief. Actually, it would be considerably less than that, because in the case of the 1/3rd of the population in rental housing, their landlords almost certainly would pocket the tax savings without passing along commensurate rent reductions to their tenants. That knocks down the theoretical property tax relief to under $99 per household, while creating a $133 million windfall for landlords.

    (Population and household estimates based on U.S. Census estimates circa 2006.)

    In fact, the $400 million is an over-the-moon figure and the actual tax collections from Eyman’s wide-open slots probably would be no more than 10% of that. So, what Eyman really was trying to sell Washington voters was about $10 of annual property tax relief in exchange for wide-open gambling and the crime, prostitution, and loan-sharking it brings in.

    Would you buy a used car from this guy?

    Hell, I wouldn’t buy a fucking WATCH from him, nor would any other rational person. Like I said, it’s amazing anyone in the media or public still listens to this liar, weasel, and charlatan. Yeah that’s YOU I’m talking about Timmy boy — I know you read this blog! Liar, weasel, and charlatan — how you like them apples you fucking snake oil salesman? Not that you worry me; you’re so incapable of writing a legal initiative that I’ve suspected all along your initiative factory is nothing but a scam to pick the pockets of suckers like Mike Dunsmire. To which I say, you and Dunsmire deserve each other.

  6. 6

    ByeByeGOP spews:

    Speaking of liars RR – we have so many GOP liars to discuss today. Let’s see – where do we begin?

    Well there’s JohnBoy McCain who lied about his gaff regarding the Shia in Iraq/Iran. The fool is running on his foreign policy experience and appears to know less about foreign policy than Gumby. Then he lied about what he said and tried to clean it up. Doesn’t this fuck understand we now have YouTube? I guess not – since he’s so fucking old he doesn’t get the “Internets.”

    And then there’s Dino Rossi. You know – he GOP idiot who said he was a real estate broker when in fact he was only an agent? I wonder why he wasn’t prosecuted for that since it’s a crime in Washington to represent yourself as a Broker when you are not?

  7. 8



    Instead of, or in addition to doing a best of Goldy open thread, why don’t you also allow commenters, once a week, to submit their own topic or story to be considered to post. I there are already people with posting privileges on HA, but this would be different. This wouldn’t be like that, rather people would email in their already written story, then you, Goldy, will pick the best one and post it for public comment. Let the toilet people speak! (Goldy once called his own comment section a toilet).

  8. 9

    rhp6033 spews:

    Actually, this brings an entirely new and interesting perspective into the Republican/neo-con governing experience. Think, if you will, about what happens to a legitimate business which is subjected to mob encroachment.

    First they inflitrate their loyal people into key control positions (“Let me introduct you to Vinnie, the new person who will be in control of “security”. The new bookeeper here is Antonio – he’s real good, most bookeepers only know how to keep one set of books, but Antonio can keep several at once on the same business! Any problems, don’t bother the old owners – they just stay in control on paper for the liquor license – if you have a problem, you come to me personally, and nobody else.”

    Then they start skimming the cash from the business. Initially they do this through the use of “contracts” with mob-related entities which provide marginal services or goods for exhorbatant rates. If anybody is in a position to object, such as auditors or accountants, they are quickly removed to make for a more compliant overseers. They consolidate their control by replacing any independent directors of the company, forcing the removal of potential trouble-makers & anybody who hasn’t proven their loyalty. Then they use the business connections to expand their control of other businesses. Once the business is thoroughly looted, it might be kept as a shell corporation for money-laundering purposes, or if it has been used to rack up a lot of otherwise legal debt, it is abandoned – usually with the original owners holding the bag on the bank loans, IRS debt, etc.

    This works as a pretty good framework for the Republican take-over of the federal government. First the put their people in charge of the election process in Florida in 2000, and also in Ohio in 2004 for good measure, making sure the scales are tipped in the Republican’s favor. Once in charge, they consolidate control by using a series of crisis (9/11) to justify extraordinary “security measures”, which they then turn toward consolidating control (Patriot Act) and to skim the cash from the treasury into corporations they control (Haliburton, KBR, Blackwater, etc.). They remove any potential troublemakers (attorney general firings), and look to expand their control (removal of Alabama governor on corruption charges, court challenge to election in Washington State, pushing for other politically-motivated prosecutions in N. Mexico, etc.). After the federal treasury is thoroughly looted, they will abandon it the taxpayers to fix the resulting mess.

    Of course, the main difference is that while the Democrats take over and are in charge of cleaning up the mess created by the Republicans, the Republicans will be blaming the Democrats for all the problems. A few years later they will be waiting for the mess to be fixed so they can loot it again later.

  9. 12

    rhp6033 spews:

    Jeff Miller and Bill Hinds, creaters of the nationally-sydicated cartoon strip “Tank MacNamara”, have been on a roll regarding the Sonics situation.

    17Mar2008: “121 Million is Chump Change”:

    18Mar2008: “Baby Steps, your honor”:

    19Mar2008: “Shouldn’t that give OKC pause?”:

    20Mar2008: “When midsize cities want a team, the want it”:

    Nice to see that there are people outside Seattle who see through the Bennett/Sterns PR campaign:

  10. 13

    rhp6033 spews:

    Troll @ 11: He was. The black couple and the white couple were symbolic, incorporating all of use.

    But I think you knew that.

  11. 16

    correctnotright spews:

    Republicans used to stand for “responsibility” but now:

    They spend money we don’t have and cause record budget deficits.

    They claim we need to invade countries that are not a threat – and then deny that was why we invaded.

    They claim to adhere to scientific facts – but the FDA, EPA and other agencies are directed with a wink and a nod to let politics decide the real policies – not science.

    They claim to believe in justice – but now the Justice dept. is more concerned with prosecuting democrats and NOT preosecuting republicans. When asked about the inner workings of the Justice dept. – Gonzalez and others just “didn’t remember” the decision making process (even though we all know it came from Rove and the White House).

    They claim to be for state’s rights – but ignore state’s rights when it doesn’t suit them (CAFE standards in California or Oregon death with dignity).

    They claim to be for moral integrity but Larry Craig and Senator Vitter are still in office and Spitzer resigned.

    They claim to be against corruption but the list of corruption cases is endless: Abramoff, Young, Stevens, Safavian, Doolittle, Murkowski, Duke Cunningham, the whole Iraqi contractors mess with Blackwater, Halliburton, KBR and tainted water….and on and on…

    They claim to be for competence in government – but Brownie, gonzalez and other crony appointments have led to incompetence and cronyism.

    But worst of all – the republicans who have continuously supported bush – now ignore Bush and claim to be against him after voting in lock step with Bush (Reichert).

  12. 17

    What'sittoya spews:

    Gas prices are really high! But now…Dingle wants to raise the federal gas tax by a whopping 50 cents. To get people to use less.
    (and they wonder why this is THE most unpopular congress ever)

  13. 18

    Puddybud spews:

    RightEqualStupid – Left Turn@7,

    Not a chance. Notice they nabbed an institution of higher learning dude. Those are leftist donkey hangouts with your perfessers who pollute the young minds full of mush!

  14. 19

    Puddybud spews:

    Damn my personal bitch incorrectnotbright is hard at work making sure Puddy will have to work at dissecting his screed in post #15.

    Good morning there incorrectnottobright. How is my new personal project doing…?

  15. 21

    Puddybud spews:

    Clueless Idiot, you’ve been my pet project for years.

    Kept me gaining new PuddyFacts with your continual trail of BULLSHITTIUM!

  16. 22

    Proud To Be An Ass spews:

    I note the P-I gave timmeh more editorial page space today to whine about how the Legislature should spend all their time doing exactly as he says……….what a whiner.

  17. 23

    YLB spews:

    20 – You’ve lost Stupes.

    Election contest – lost.

    I-912: revenge of the wingnuts – lost.

    Mama-beater Irons – lost.

    Nov 2006 – lost.

    Congress will remain in the hands of Dems, the White House will go to Dems, Rossi will lose, State legislature will stay Dem.

    The people are sick and tired of right wing bullshit. It didn’t work.

  18. 26

    J. Kane'ala spews:

    rhp6033 @ 9

    That’s exactly how it’s done. This happened to a company in New Jersey, I think it was called SEALAND shipping, not sure of the name, but they were looted just like that. It was a wonderful company until the mob became entangled. This is exactly what has happened to our government, the GOP has been taken over by criminals, white-collar criminals, the kind that know their way around the law.

    I was born and raised in Kansas surrounded by the GOP. This is not the GOP of old. These are gangsters pure and simple. They have control of the Supreme Court, Judiciary and military.

    I miss our country like a long, lost friend. Our miss her so much I can hardly stand it.

  19. 27

    YLB spews:

    9, 25 – See Stupes, this is kind of company you keep. I hope the Dems have the stones to put this ugly crowd you carry water for in jail where they belong.

  20. 28

    rhp6033 spews:

    J @ 26: I think the real birth of the current neo-con movement was during the late 1960’s, when Spiro Agnew was the mouthpiece for trash-talking the Democrats and anybody who didn’t agree with them, or march in a lock-step fashion.

    But most of the Republicans I knew back then were reasonable people. We might disagree on the means to an agreed common goal, but we respected one another’s motivations, and could argue about it in a civil fashion. One of my Senators at the time was Tenn. Sen. Howard Baker Jr., and he was a reasonable Republican. He was deeply interested in justice, and was convinced that the Watergate hearings would show the President was innocent, and only a few misguided underlings were guilty. He was thoroughly ashamed and embarrased to discover differently. Unfortunately, those in charge of the current administration – including Rove & Cheney, took a different lesson – that they should destroy the tapes, never appoint a special prosecuter, and make sure you don’t get caught.

    Although I don’t agree with a lot of Barry Goldwater’s politics, I respected that he stood by his principles and spoke his mind, even harshly criticizing the current Republicans for being too ideological, impractical, and abandoning the principles of frugal spending and protection of individual freedoms.

    Former Tenn. Sen. Bill Brock was another matter, however. I actually got into a shouting match with him once in March of 1975 (that’s another story). He came from a wealthy family, and was a Spiro-Agnew wanna-be. He lost his re-election bid the following year, along with a lot of other Republicans, in the post-Watergate backlash.

  21. 30

    Puddybud spews:


    You keep saying I never asked you networking questions. I asked them of you the first time March 12th. I re-asked them of you on March 18th. You continually claim you are not seeing the questions.

    So here are the links to the original questions: 33#comment-755588 33#comment-755589

    You can’t cheat by Google or “your employees” as the “average” network engineer knows these questions off the top of their head.

    Enjoy showing us your prowess.

  22. 31

    rhp6033 spews:

    In other news, Republican State Senator Pam Roach has been barred from having any contact with staff of the Republican Caucus because she creates a “hostile work environment””

    Look, every party has their kooks, but she really takes the cake. I wouldn’t be too surprised if the state Republicans decide to fund a Democratic challenger for her seat, just to get rid of her.

  23. 33

    The Real Mark spews:

    YourLiberalBS @ 22

    Hmmm… You guys trash Irons, yet scream “irrelevant” when Darcy Burner drives carelessly (at the very least), wrecks four cars and hurts a 3-1/2 year old child. And now there’s a lawsuit from one of the other people she hit. I truly, truly hope it is only for property damage and not that Darcy maimed someone and is trying to weasel out of taking responsiblity.

    “Nov 2006 – lost.” Yes, for your girl Darcy.

    “Congress will remain in the hands of Dems”

    Very possible unless public dissatisfaction (Lefties screaming not lib enough and Righties… well…) with the impotent Powers That Be (Pelosi, Reid et al) creates a backlash.

    “White House will go to Dems”

    I wouldn’t bet your welfare check on that one. It is possible — if for no other reason than a knee-jerk reaction to Bush — but you should take a look at the latest polls. McCain is building a nice lead. That said, polls can be quite fluid. Instead, we should look at the Democratic Party’s incomparable ability to screw the pooch over and over and over.

    “Rossi will lose”

    He was close enough last time (even you have to admit it was CLOSE) that anything can happen over the next months. Better to make that prediction at the end of October. But Gregoire is NOT a shoe-in.

    State legislature will stay Dem

    Unfortunately, that is likely. Fortunately, you’ve had at least a few sane, pro-business Dems elected — some of whom are quite responsive and personal. My bigger concern is the (likely illegal) influence that outside parties (e.g. unions) exert on various state agencies. For example: funny business involving “research” L&I has done using taxpayer dollars, but whose sole and deliberate purpose was to influence legislation to benefit unions.

    “The people are sick and tired of right wing bullshit.”

    The people are sick and tired of the BS from BOTH parties.

  24. 35

    YLB spews:

    32 – I’ll put aside the ugly stereotypes for the moment. The target surface, again, is just too rich.

    Drives carelessly? Like Jane Hague?

    Nov 2006. Yes, for your precious DeLay/Hastert and Frist/McConnel crowd.

    Very possible? Count on it. The people will see through the lockstep obstructionists in the Senate and the chimp’s veto pen. The Republicans have no bench I’ve heard of.

    McCain is building a nice lead? Wait till folks start paying attention to his plan for the next 100 years.

    He was close last time. Yes. Not nearly as close this time. People don’t like whiners and sleazy real estate shills. People will reject him like they did the insurance shill McGavick.

    We mostly agree on the legislature. If the unions overreach it is to their detriment and that’s what elections are for.

    Right wing bullshit. That’s not a party. That’s a mentality that’s clearly on display with the ugly stereotypes you spew here. It’s a mentality that dominates the Republican party and the right wing blogosphere. It’s the reason why even a Chuck Hagel thinks there’s no hope for the Republican party.

  25. 37

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    @11 Nope. Wright is a non-issue. He doesn’t speak for Obama, and Obama has repudiated Wright’s inflammatory views. End of story. One the other hand, we do have a continuing problem in this country with racial stereotypes, prejudices, discrimination, and hate crimes; and if Obama can talk a new generation of Americans into setting aside those ugly relics of our past and moving on to true equality, then Obama will rank right up there with Jesus Christ, Martin Luther King Jr., and Gandhi as one of history’s great healers! It would be beyond foolhardy to pass up the chance of giving Obama a chance to lead us into a new era of understanding and tolerance in order to give the presidency to an unaccomplished and uninspiring party hack like McCain. That would be the dumbest thing anyone’s done since crucifying Christ instead of the murderer.

  26. 38

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    @16 Dingell’s wrong. Raising the gas tax by 50 cents would have no effect on pump prices, which would still be set by supply and demand.

  27. 39

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    But I would expect trolls like you to support gas tax increases, because less profit for oil companies means Roger Rabbit makes less money in the stock market! And the money also would help repair America’s crumbling roads and bridges.

    Oh wait, I forgot, Republicans are against anything that saves lives or helps ordinary Americans.

  28. 40

    The Real Mark spews:

    YLB @ 34 “McCain is building a nice lead? Wait till folks start paying attention to his plan for the next 100 years.”

    It isn’t his “plan for the next 100 years” that could hurt him. Instead, it is his tendency to say what he is thinking without taking a pause before opening his mouth. On one hand, you get a much more honest picture of the real person than you would of the average polished politician who mumbles dozens of ummmmmmm’s when there is no TelePrompTer. On the other hand, verbal discipline is critical (though “ummmmmmm” doesn’t exactly ooze sincerity and/or honesty).

    Take a minute to consider what he really said about the “100 years.” He merely talked about US PRESENCE like we have in Japan and Europe and he made it clear that it did not involve loss of life. That said, it was careless statement to make.

    Obama has his own issues re: Iraq. If you go back over the last 5 years, he looks like a fish on the deck of a boat. He’s against it when it is of NO political consequence to him, but then he later goes so far as to say that he could have been wrong and also said (at one point) that his position isn’t different from Bush’s. You have to figure that there is at least a shred of truth to his former aide’s BBC statements.

  29. 42

    YLB spews:

    39 – I know what he said and it’s just more of the same. He called for more boots on the ground in Iraq and even called on Clinton for more boots in Kosovo.

    More boots on the ground. That’s his answer to everything. Why do you think the neo-cons supported him before they piled in behind Cheney for Bush?

    No grasp of economic policy.

    And he thinks AQ trains its cannon fodder in Iran.

    The man is in his seventies and not fit for office. I’d take 1996 Bob Dole over today’s McCain.

  30. 44

    Hannah spews:

    Since nobody explained the discrepencies last time I asked:

    This poll is very contradicting…in one question:
    “Do you think the United States does or does not have an obligation to establish a reasonable level of stability and security in Iraq before withdrawing all of its troops?”…answer 65%

    But another question:
    “When it comes to the war in Iraq, which of the following statements comes closer to your point of view? The most responsible thing we can do is find a way to withdraw most of our troops from Iraq by the beginning of 2009. The most responsible thing we can do is to remain in Iraq until the situation in the country is stable.” answer…52% think we should withdrawn by beginning if 2009

    So which is it, get out by 2009 or fulfil an obligation of stability and security?

  31. 46

    Daddy Love spews:

    43 H

    The open-ended US commitment to Iraq has achieved neither security nor stability with over five years to do so. We should leave and soon. Iraq belongs to Iraqis.

  32. 47

    The Real Mark spews:

    YLB @ 41

    What about the Obama flip-flopping? Are you denying it happened? Sourced from a WIDE variety of media — including his own book.

    Though I’m much younger than McCain, I’m not about to hold a particular age number against any candidate. By raw number logic, Obama shouldn’t be in because of his youth (his lack of serious experience aside). Should we change the requirement to “age 50 to 60?”

    McCain has more experience in his little pinky than Obama and Clinton combined. And he has PROVEN his bipartisan credentials (Gang of 14, etc.). Obama TALKS of being a “uniter” (hmmm, where have I heard that?), but has shown nothing of the sort beyond his TelePrompTer speeches. In fact, on significant issues, Obama merely marched lockstep with the Dem Party.

    As for your earlier comments about “right wing BS,” you are correct. Right WING BS is BS — and it is the same on the Far Left. As for your comment about me, personally… I am equally disgusted by the Far Left AND the Far Right and won’t hesitate to comment on either. It is merely that there are far more sticky-keyboard Far Lefties here, so I comment accordingly.

    IMHO, George Soros and the Silicon Valley kids and Dobson and the rest should not have the influence they do on politics. Also… BOTH corporations and unions should be forbidden from funding candidates or providing any organizational or manpower help for political purposes. PAC’s (also only funded and staffed by individuals) should be able to promote specific issues, but should not be allowed to mention or endorse any candidate or party in their campaigning.

  33. 48

    ByeByeGOP spews:

    So here we go again – it’s okay that the lying piece of shit McCain has flip-flopped on almost EVERY single important issue because – now wait for it – allegedly Obama has. No wonder republican kids are all fucked up. Their parents teach them that it’s okay to rob a bank – just so long as someone else did too.

  34. 49

    Hannah spews:

    @45 – I agree with the fact security and stability have not been accomplished.

    What I was asking is why is there such different responses by the same polled group in this pole just conducted this past week??

  35. 50

    Daddy Love spews:

    42 Pud

    McCain solicited and very publicly welcomed a political endorsement from crazy, Catholic-hating, Armegeddon-hastening Pastor Hagee, and no one is raising an eyebrow, apparently. Barack Obama is being called to task repeatedly in the national press for remarks made by ONE of the pastors at his church on occasions when Mr. Obama was not present.

    These are not equivalent.

  36. 51

    Hannah spews:

    The Real Mark: can you give me some examples of Obama flip flopping?

    And BBG: Can you give me some examples of McCain flip flopping?

  37. 52

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    @39 “Take a minute to consider what he really said about the ‘100 years.’ He merely talked about US PRESENCE like we have in Japan and Europe and he made it clear that it did not involve loss of life. That said, it was careless statement to make.”

    How, exactly, does McCain think we’ll maintain a U.S. presence in Iraq without loss of life when every Iraqi who can pack a gun is shooting at us?

    There is no parallel. Japan and Germany lost the war and threw in the towel. They surrendered and accepted occupation when they were defeated and no longer had the ability or will to make war. To get the Iraqi insurgents to peacefully accept a U.S. occupation, we’ll have to defeat them first, as we did Japan and Germany. This war has now lasted longer and cost more than World War II and the Iraqi insurgents are far from defeated. Victory is nowhere in sight. Moreover, they are not fighting a war they started; they are fighting on their own soil to evict a foreign invader whose attack on their country and people was unprovoked. McCain is divorced from reality to talk about a century of peaceful occupation against the backdrop of the reality in Iraq. We need a realist, not a wishful thinker, in the White House. That’s how we got into this mess in the first place: Republican idiots divorced from reality making comic-book decisions that backfired on them because they gave no consideration to real facts and circumstances. Another 4 years of that kind of idiocy is the last thing America needs.

  38. 53

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    @40 It’s okay with me if you’d rather give those dollars to oil companies and their shareholders instead, being as I’m one of their shareholders. I’ll be happy to take your money instead of letting the government spend it on something that benefits you instead of benefitting me. =:-D

  39. 54

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    @42 When you write a coherent question so I know what the fuck you’re asking, I’ll answer.

  40. 55

    Hannah spews:

    @49-But Wright was Obama’s spiritual advisor, family friends. Is Hagee McCain’s spiritual advisor or family friend? Big difference and I think Obama handled this issue so well, there is no way anyone can use it against him long-term.

  41. 56

    Daddy Love spews:

    48 H

    Those are not from the same poll.

    The question about our obligation is from a USA Today/Gallup Poll. Feb. 21-24, 2008. In that poll, 60% of the people polled also said that if they had to choose, they think it is better for the U.S. to set a timetable for removing troops from Iraq and to stick to that timetable regardless of what is going on in Iraq at the time. And that’s easy to explain: there’s a difference between what is better for the country and what people perceive our obligations to be.

    The question on withdrawing by the beginning of 2009 is from the NBC News/Wall Street Journal Poll conducted by the polling organizations of Peter Hart (D) and Bill McInturff (R). March 7-10, 2008. In that poll, 53% of the people polled also said that the U.S. goal of achieving victory in Iraq is not still possible.


    So the answer to your question is…your question is mistaken.

  42. 57

    The Real Mark spews:

    DL @ 45

    Based on your comment, I’m betting you’ve done plenty of seed-planting and walking away. Right?

    Regardless of whether you agreed with the President’s and Congress’ original decision (and authorization) to go to war or not, the U.S. is in Iraq and has an obligation to set things as right as possible.

    Darcy “P.T.” Barnum Burner only offers a non-plan “plan.” So what are you suggesting? Or, to rephrase, if you had to vote on just that issue, what is the greatest amount of time you would accept troops still being in Iraq? Bug out in 90 days? Let the country fall into civil war? Destabilize the entire region?

    Since you love to rip into Bush and the GOP for Iraq, are you willing to equally tear into Truman and LBJ, both Democrats, for getting the U.S. into Korea and Vietnam?

    Are you saying that the U.S. has done the RIGHT thing by not taking a more active position on Darfur and similar situations?

  43. 58

    Hannah spews:

    AHHHH I didn’t realize that, thank you! Well seems half our country thinks we need to stabilize and secure while the other half says get out by ’09. Makes sense now that it was a completely different group.

  44. 59

    Hannah spews:

    The Real Mark – I say let’s bug out in 6-10 months (as per this plan) and when all hell breaks loose….we can blame Bush.

  45. 60

    Puddybud spews:

    Daddy Love: Being objective (which you are not being right now) Barack said this Wright guy was his guide. If Oprah left his church eight years ago and Wright made comments about her richness “made” her leave, what kept Barack there? Remember I said my family is having issues with many of Wright’s statements, while Don Joe said supported what he said. My wife and I have never heard that gospel commentary preached in the black churches we’ve attended over the years.

    He admitted he heard similar sermons. He admitted he didn’t tell him later you need to tone that down. His aides uninvited Wright from Barack’s initial candidacy announcement. You can Google that.

    I’m being transparent here Daddy Love. You can’t have it one way and say it’s the other.

  46. 61

    YLB spews:

    46 – Nope. It’s a little disappointing but shit happens in politics. As I look at the list:

    Is it that bad? Pot and Cuba? It’ll take us a while to catch up with Canada.

    Sorry. If a guy has a brain fart about AQ training in Iran, I’m much less likely to support that guy especially if he’s going to be spending what? 3 quarters of billion dollars per day of my kid’s future?

    Yes, he has experience even some that’s commendable. But so did Cheney and Rumsfeld and look what they did. Ironically the most eloquent argument AGAINST invading Iraq I’ve ever heard came from Cheney.

    I haven’t heard much if any left wing B.S. here. No touting of Marxism, the Internationals, a command economy, proletariat, etc. Pretty mainstream here as far I can see. Medicare for all? A Harry Truman idea. What else? Fixing crumbling infrastructure? A great way to put laid off housing boom workers to work. Let the tax cuts expire? Someone’s got to pay off this disaster of a war. I sure don’t want my kids to do it.

    What we do a hell of a lot here is ridicule and make fun of right wing bullshit and right wing bullshit artists. Sorry. They’ve had the megaphone and we’re calling them to account one way or another.

    I don’t understand your paranoia about Soros. If anything you should be cheering him. None of his stuff did all that much good in 2004. Nothing too radical about the think tanks he funds. Silicon Valley? Those guys are hard core capitalist success stories!

    Gee it sounds like you want to take the money out of politics. Public financing? Sounds good to me.

  47. 62

    Daddy Love spews:


    Let me make this simple for even you to understand, Pud. Barack Obama did not publicly solicit nor publicly accept an endorsement from Pastor Wright. McCain did publicly accept an endorsement from the vile Pastor Hagee. As I understand it, Pastor Wright has not publicly endorsed barack Obama, nor doe he head a politically active organization (as Pastor Hagee does). The questions of McCain’s acceptance of an endorsement by Hagee and Obama’s mere membership in Wright’s congregation are not equivalent. Fucking admit it.

    That statement says nothing about the appropriateness of Wright’s views or statements, and for you to veer away from the fact of the non-equivalence I clearly stated to instead say “But Wright is a bad man, etc., and Obama has not yet repudiate him enough even though he has several times” is just a smoke screen.

    Spend bashing Wright and Hagee and I’ll believe you aren’t just grinding a political axe.

  48. 63

    YLB spews:

    Darcy “P.T.” Barnum Burner only offers a non-plan “plan.”

    There you go again. Knee goes jerk and kicks a hole through the desk.

    You’re calling General Eaton a “non-planner”?

  49. 64

    Daddy Love spews:

    56 TRM

    Based on your comment, I’m betting you’ve done plenty of seed-planting and walking away. Right?

    Oh, ad hominem attack. Way to open.

    Regardless of whether you agreed with the President’s and Congress’ original decision (and authorization) to go to war or not, the U.S. is in Iraq and has an obligation to set things as right as possible.

    Nope. Our entry into Iraq was illegal, immoral, and wrong. Iraq belongs to the Iraqis, as they need us to get the fuck out of their country and start rebuilding it themselves since we clearly won’t. The “obligation” you cite is a means to manipulate the emotions of Americans (sadly, without much success these days) into supporting our idiot foray there.

    Darcy “P.T.” Barnum Burner only offers a non-plan “plan.”

    More ad hominem bullshit.

    So what are you suggesting? Or, to rephrase, if you had to vote on just that issue, what is the greatest amount of time you would accept troops still being in Iraq? Bug out in 90 days? Let the country fall into civil war? Destabilize the entire region?

    You present a false dichotomy, as most Republicans do, as if those are the only choices. Guess what? The region IS destabilized, and it’s because we invaded, occupied, and continue to occupy Iraq. The country IS in a civil war, and it’s because we invaded, occupied, and continue to occupy Iraq.

    If I were not voting on some issue not yet defined, and it were my fiat, I would do much like what is outlined in teh Reponsible Plan, or what the Center for American Progress called for in its “Strategic Redeployment and Reset” proposal months ago: phase redeployment out of Iraq with appropriate force protection, persuading Iraq’s neighbors to assist in stabilization efforts, assisting the five million internal and external Iraqi refugees, restoring legal and fiscal accountability for those working in and around our efforts in Iraq, and reducing our dependece on the oil that drew us there. Iraq will find its way to stability, but not with out puppet government in place.

    Since you love to rip into Bush and the GOP for Iraq, are you willing to equally tear into Truman and LBJ, both Democrats, for getting the U.S. into Korea and Vietnam?

    I was a vocal opponent of the war in vietnam, and of our efforts to prop up the corrupt Shah of Iran against his own people and the dictator Somoza against HIS own people. The Korean War was a little before my time, but even if there was a reason to be there in ’50 and ’51, we have NO fucking reason to be there now, and we should leave Korea to the Koreans.

    Are you saying that the U.S. has done the RIGHT thing by not taking a more active position on Darfur and similar situations?
    Cynical, and typical. Iraq was and is NOT a humanitarian intervention, and likening it to one is just another unsuccesssful ploy to drum up support from people who know you’re lying to them.

  50. 65

    Daddy Love spews:

    I got a tag wrong in 61. I said:
    “Spend equal time bashing Wright and Hagee and I’ll believe you aren’t just grinding a political axe.”

  51. 66

    The Real Mark spews:

    H @ 50

    This is by no means the extent of the flip-flopping, but contrast his 9/12/2007 quote from his website:

    “I opposed this war from the beginning… I opposed it in 2004… I introduced a plan in January to remove all of our combat brigades by next March.”Obama ’08 website

    with his comments in July 2004 on Meet the Press:

    “There’s not much of a difference between my position on Iraq and George Bush’s position at this stage”

    Does that mean that when he says he opposed it in 2004, he merely meant there there was at least one day in 2004 where he opposed it? Or could it be that it was politically expedient at the time to say such a thing?

    Let’s see what he later says on Meet the Press when questioned about the July 2004 comment: “it probably was the wrong time for me to be making a strong case against our party’s nominees’ decisions when it came to Iraq”

    So maybe he WAS always against the war, but he’s willing to say or do what is needed to advance his political career. Add that to his aides’ comments about NAFTA and crossing his fingers when he talks about an immediate pullout…

    Does he trust the commanders on the ground in Iraq for the best military advice (as he has said) or does he think his “remove all combat brigades my next March” plan should be followed no matter what?

    You… make… the call!

  52. 67

    rhp6033 spews:

    RE: Obama/Wright:

    Look, I’m a Democrate, but I’m also an evangelical protestant. My pastor is a conservative Republican.

    But I don’t go to church to get political indoctrination. I go to church to worship and receive spiritual instruction. We have an implicit deal: I don’t listen to his political opinions, and he doesn’t take my spiritual advice.

    So, if I ever run for office (when pigs fly), is someone going to try to tar me with my pastor’s political opinions? Good luck with that.

  53. 68

    Hannah spews:

    DL-my Iraqi friends (I have quite a few) all believe in the re-stabilition of their country. And when it comes to “Iraq was and is NOT a humanitarian intervention”, in my friends eyes, even knowing the whole “why we went to war” reasoning, do believe it is humanitarian to some degree. They say without the US taking down Saddam Hussein, they would never be able to return home, as many of them have for visits and hopefully soon a few will going home permanentally. So I think in some part, it was and is, a humanitatian effort. Yes we should get the hell out, I totally agree, we were lied to as to the reasons, obviously our intelligence isn’t that great, but it is time to leave and let the Iraqi’s figure it out. I know most my friends would rather stay here in the US where things are safe, rather than go home back to the civil war that has been going on for centuries, well before we invaded.

  54. 69

    Daddy Love spews:

    Over and over again (as with TRM) we see withdrawal plans being judged by worst-case scenarios whereas staying scenarios are judged by best-case scenarios. The truth of the matter is that no matter what we do with the American military, the course of events in Iraq will ultimately be determined by decisions made by Iraqis. If we leave, they might choose poorly with disastrous results. But that can happen if we stay, too. Or they could choose well. The purpose of the surge was to use our military power to try to alter the decision-making of Iraqi leaders, but it hasn’t worked. Nothing has worked. Our staying is not achieiving the goods we planned and it has great negative effects and a huge cost.

  55. 70

    Daddy Love spews:

    66 H

    Of course, I don’t know your friends, or where or when they are “visitng” and/or “going home permanently.” But if they are moving there, I guess I would just say that the opposite decision has been made (sometimes involuntarily) by 20% of the population of Iraq (some 5 million of them) who are either internally displaced or have left the country as refugees.

  56. 71

    The Real Mark spews:

    YLB @ 62

    You and I will not agree on the magnitude of Darcy’s “plan.” Goldy, you and the rest of the HA gang all think it is some Magna Carta for a new millennium. All I’m saying is that the emperor has no clothes. It is an attractive and readable restatement of ISG bullet points with a few new ideas tacked on. Heavy on the broad strokes, light on specifics.

    If it wasn’t a stunt, Wired For Change would not be involved. They are NOT, as someone tried to suggest earlier, just a web host or bunch of coders. Responsible Plan Media LLC is their baby.

    Answer me this: Why do you need an LLC to share your (alleged) vast knowledge of foreign policy with the public? Why not just call a press conference, hand out copies “for the public good” and call it a day?

  57. 72

    Daddy Love spews:

    66 H

    They say without the US taking down Saddam Hussein, they would never be able to return home

    How was that? Did they openly oppose Saddam politically? I mean, the best of my understanding is that in Saddam’s Iraq, if you did (openly oppose him politically), you were dead, but if you did not, you could live your life, run a business, raise a family, follow your own religion, etc.

  58. 73

    YLB spews:

    69 – They do communications leg work. You think Republicans never use people like that?

    This LLC stuff is a canard AFAICT.

  59. 74

    Daddy Love spews:

    Hey Mark, have you picked up a phone and asked Wired For Change what their role is/was? I mean, you can have absolute faith in your ignorant surmise or you can try to find out some facts from the source. Why do I guess you prefer the former?


    Phone: (202) 558-2807

    Mailing Address:
    Wired for Change, Inc.
    1700 Connecticut Avenue, Suite 403
    Washington, DC 20009

  60. 75

    Hannah spews:

    @70 – According to them, yes you could live your life, but were VERY restricted, keep your mouth shut, follow by Saddam, women were not allowed to be seen or heard. School was unheard of unless you were rich. Every single aspect of what you could read, write or speak was held by Saddam and his gang.

  61. 76

    Daddy Love spews:


    That was not my understanding at all. I could probably source this if you want, but I understand that far from “women were not allowed to be seen or heard” women were privy to a great deal of both personal and public freedom under Saddam, far more than in most neighboring countries (our “allies” in Saudi Arabia and Kuwait are cases in point) or under his religious fundamentalist successors thus far, AND that there was a thriving and highly educated middle class in Saddam’s Iraq that in fact surpassed nearly every other Mideast country except Israel. Most of those educated people have fled since our disastrous occupation. I don’t think your friends are correct, but I could try to find more persuasive source material.

  62. 77

    Politically Incorrect spews:

    I want Obama to get the nomination instead of Hillary. Calling Hills a “witch” is an insult to good Wiccans everywhere.

    I think this crazy pastor’s rants have hurt Obama’s chances, though. Too bad. I sure want to see Hillary finished with her quest for the presidency, and Obama’s nomination in 2008 would surely make that happen. Let’s keep our fingers crossed that Obama gets the Democratic nomination in spite of this recent controversy.

  63. 78

    The Real Mark spews:

    DL @ 67

    I don’t entirely disagree with you about some things.

    You are correct in saying that “the course of events in Iraq will ultimately be determined by decisions made by Iraqis.” However, the presence of U.S. troops does significantly impact the dynamic — both for good and bad. I happen to think that the net good exceeds what would happen if we leave — especially if we simply bail out.

    Can we do a better job? Yes. Should we push harder for the Iraqis to shoulder responsibility? Absolutely. Do I, personally, know the exact strategy to get us out? No. But neither do you and, I believe, neither does Darcy. If Gen. Eaton (who is in Hillary’s camp) is more than a name on the page, why aren’t there more specifics in the “plan?”

    To give you some background, my family came from a Soviet-occupied nation. For 40 years, my relatives and most everyone else BEGGED for U.S. intervention and cheered when the first NATO jets circled the country on patrol. Just because the U.S. screwed up the entry into the war, doesn’t mean good can’t come of it all.

  64. 79

    The Real Mark spews:

    DL @ 72

    I actually DID try to call them. All they had going at the times I called was multi-box voicemail system. Could not get a live voice no matter how many extensions I tried.

  65. 81

    The Real Mark spews:

    DL @ 70 (in response to H @ 66)

    I think you said it best: “you can have absolute faith in your ignorant surmise…”

    Until you or someone close to you has lived under that kind of oppression, just sit down and shut up.

  66. 82

    rhp6033 spews:

    74: Pre-invasion Iraq was certainly a dictatorship. But the great majority of Iraqis were not bothered in their day-to-day lives, as long as they (or anyone around them) didn’t get involved in politics.

    There was, of course, the obvious and rather large exception that their sons became cannon-fodder whenever Saddam had expansionist tendencies.

    Although there was a good deal of spouting of Islamic phrases, and Saddam kept the mosques in line in part by buying off the Sunni clerics, Iraq was a rather secular society – much like Syria (also a Baathist regime).

    Obviously, we would prefer an Iraq with a democratically elected government which was friendly to us. But there are a lot of governments, throuought the world, controlled by strongmen who don’t make more than a passing nod towards Democracy. Saudi Arabia is a prime example. If you openly criticize the government there, you will be arrested.

    But we don’t invade Saudi Arabia, nor do we invade N. Korea, China, Myanmar, Cuba, or any one of several former Soviet republics or African nations which are controlled by local despots. Why invade Iraq? The only argument was that they possessed WMD contrary to the truce agreement and U.N. sanctions, and posed a threat to the U.S. But we all know what happened to that rationale.

    Is Iraq better off without Saddam? I used to say yes. But now I’m not so sure. It seems to me that we’ve exchanged one big dictator with a thousand small ones, each of them fighting for control with the civilians in Iraq (and the U.S. military) caught in the middle.

  67. 83

    The Real Mark spews:

    YLB @ 71

    “Communications leg work?” Read their site. They concoct “clever, niche actions” to get their clients noticed. The whole “plan” is a “clever, niche action” to buy Darcy some foreign policy cred and some media notice.

    Deny all you want, but more proof (site registrations, the wording of the document, etc.) points to it being a PR job rather than a bestowing of wisdom upon the populace.

    You really don’t have a guess as to why they had to make it an LLC instead of just posting it at Darcy’s website?

  68. 84

    The Real Mark spews:

    rhp6033 @ 80

    You’re forgetting that Saddam easily makes the Top 10 list of all-time mass-murderers.

    I also don’t believe that Saddam didn’t have some sort of WMD program, even if the finished devices were not to be found.

    A threat to the U.S.? Not directly. A threat to our allies or interests in the region? Likely. A threat to stability in the Middle East? Definitely.

    I’ve often wondered if our entry into Iraq was precisely so that we could kill two birds with one stone: get rid of a whack-job dictator who could throw the region into a tailspin and move our military bases out of Saudi, but keep them in the region. If we don’t need Saudi oil (as much) and we don’t need bases there, we’re in a much stronger position to push them on both human rights and commerce issues.

  69. 85

    Puddybud spews:

    Clueless Idiot wrote about George Soros: “Nothing too radical about the think tanks he funds.”

    Media Matters – Phony Soldier Smear – Jesse MacBeth anyone – Had to eat it.
    Media Matters – Known Mouthpiece for Heilary Clinton – She admitted she help found it
    Media Matters – Pushed Heilary’s $5000 Baby bond – Rejected
    Media Matters – Phony Laundered Money Allegation against Rush – They had to eat it
    Media Matters – Used By Elizabeth Edwards of Rush’s Vietnam Medical Deferment – Snopes said deferment real.

  70. 86

    Puddybud spews:

    So simmeringsempleton – So you finally found them. Answer them here. We’ll see what you “know” about networking. Those were easy ones.

    So you know the answers to them without any help or Googling them? Will you be honest about it?

  71. 87

    Daddy Love spews:

    79 TRM

    When I make an ignorant surmise, I’ll certainly admit to it. What I wrote was nothing of the sort. I have read fairly extenseively on pre-invasion Iraq, and I am sure I can back up what I wrote.

    FYI, pre-invasion Iraqi expats tended to be educated or weatlthy anti-Saddamites (which is both why they left and why they were ABLE to leave) who badmouth Saddam’s regime as a matter of course. The role of women and the large middle-class in pre-invasion Iraq is a matter of fact, and when I get a minute I’ll bring the pain on it.

    So spare me the “if you weren’t suffering there you don’t know.”

  72. 88

    The Real Mark spews:

    DL @ 63 “I was a vocal opponent of the war in vietnam”

    See… that’s an interesting thing I’ve seen before from the Left — you oppose the “war in Vietnam,” but you attack President Bush personally over Iraq.

    Just as you attack Bush and the GOP, why didn’t you say that you opposed “warmongering LBJ and his Democratic minions?” Based on the history I’ve read, LBJ was quite forceful in pushing his agenda — and that included Vietnam.

  73. 89

    The Real Mark spews:

    DL @ 85

    My point was that if you’ve never lived under oppression — especially the kind that threatens your life — you shouldn’t go around saying, “ehhh… that’s not so bad.”

    I took your tone about being able to exist if you didn’t oppose Saddam to be far too casual.

    In a situation like that — as existed in Soviet-occupied countries — you live in constant terror that you’ll be hauled in by the secret police, even if you’ve done nothing. (spare me the CIA, FBI, Patriot Act blather — it is nowhere close to KGB/Cheka)

  74. 90

    The Real Mark spews:

    Follow-up to me @ 87

    Yes, I have solid knowledge of KGB / Cheka — not personally, but relatives and family friends who were tortured (including being yanked off the street in W. Germany and tortured in E. Germany) and others sent to Siberia (and extracted thanks to a personal appeal by Nixon).

  75. 91

    Daddy Love spews:

    82 TRM

    You’re forgetting that Saddam easily makes the Top 10 list of all-time mass-murderers.
    I’m still looking on that but I don’t think that’s correct. According to, the top ten of the 20th century are :
    1. Soviet Union
    2. Communist China
    3. Nazi Germany
    4. Nationalist China
    5. Imperial Japan (Manchuria?)
    6. Cambodia under the Khmer Rouge
    7. Turkey under the Young Turks
    8. Communist Vietnam
    9. Communist Poland
    10. Pakistan under Yahya Khan

    I don’t think Saddam makes it. Oh, how many of those countries did we invade and occupy? I’m thinking 3.

    I also don’t believe that Saddam didn’t have some sort of WMD program, even if the finished devices were not to be found.
    What you believe with little or no factual basis would fill a book, including your ignorant surmise about Wired for Change. The ISG found no chemical or biological weapons, no precursor chemicals, no biological weapons labs, no uranium enrichment equipment or plants, no delvery vehicles, NOTHING. The fact that you believe that what was not there must have been there is just your very musing wishful thinking, unsupported by a shred of fact. Even the paltry small missiles that could exceed his UN-resolution-allowed range by a couple of mere kilometers were discovered and destroyed.

    A threat to the U.S.? Not directly.

    No, not a threat at at all; not in any way. Not a threat with unmanned vehicles as Bush claimed. Not a threat to give away nuclear weapons he didn’t have, as Bush claimed he would. Not a threat with “reconstituted nuclear weapons” as Cheney claimed. Not a threat to the US in any way at all.

    A threat to our allies or interests in the region? Likely.
    Depends on how we define our interests. When our interest were to have a reasonably powerful secular counterweight to Iranian influence, he sure was allied with those “interests.” And of course, we “screwed that pooch” as you so colorfully say. You see, we conveniently defined our “interests” to suit our policy of invasion and occupation, as outlined in the Downing Street memo.

    A threat to stability in the Middle East? Definitely.
    Huh? His regime may have been one of the most stable IN the ME. Here you go: the ethnically conflicted, all-but-civil-war cash of large armed forces in post-invasion Iraq is the MOST destabilizing area/event in the ME today. Saddam does not hold a candle to us in that regard. We have not improved things vis-a-vis “stability;” we have made them magnitudes worse.

    If we don’t need Saudi oil (as much)…

    Yeah, because all of the Iraqi oil that we don’t own anyway is on the market, right? Yeah, we sure kept prices low. Those Saudis are beggin’ for mercy.

    …and we don’t need bases there, we’re in a much stronger position to push them on both human rights and commerce issues.

    I noticed how hard Bush pushes those Saudis. Um, NOT. Does reality ever intrude on your dream?

  76. 92

    Daddy Love spews:

    87 TRM

    My point was that if you’ve never lived under oppression — especially the kind that threatens your life — you shouldn’t go around saying, “ehhh… that’s not so bad.”

    She was quoting ex-pats, and neither of us know what they really lived under. But all I claimed was that there was a thriving, educated middle class, a high standard of living, and a fairly robust amount of freedom for women (even and espeicially if you compare it to the freedom Iraqi women “enjoy” under our tender occupation) in Iraq under Saddam. I didn’t say they all had wonderful, fear-free lives.

    BTW, what is it really like now in Iraq? For a long time there we (the US) were rounding up people pretty fucking much at random, throwing them into Abu Ghraib and raping and torturing them. Think those people were having a great old time? Think no one was afraid? Of us?

  77. 93

    Megan spews:

    FRAUD * FRAUD * FRAUD* Check Clark County Courts

  78. 94

    Daddy Love spews:

    91 M

    Thanks for that addition to the dialog. When you can communicate in complete sentences, come on back.

  79. 95

    The Real Mark spews:

    DL @ 89

    Your link doesn’t seem to work, but I’ll keep trying variations.

    I’ll admit that the “Top 10″ comment was off the top of my head, but I had read a couple of analyses that put him quite a ways up there (to the extent that any mass-murder stats are accurate). I’ll see if I can dig up one or two of the sources (no, not GOP talking points) that I read some time ago.

    In the meantime, you might consider this from an article on

    “More to the point, Saddam kept his people in a state of constant terror, as did Hitler and Stalin at the height of their powers. Iraqi writer Kanan Makiya, whose book ‘Republic of Fear’ remains the definitive account of Saddam’s Iraq, estimates that in 1980, one-fifth of the economically active Iraqi labor force was a member of the army, the political militias, the secret police, or the police. One in five people, in other words, was employed to carry out institutional violence. The result was a country in which the families of political victims received their body parts in the mail; in which tens of thousands of Kurds could be murdered with chemical weapons; and in which, as Saddam’s truncated trial demonstrated, the dictator could sign a document randomly condemning 148 people to death—among them an 11-year-old boy—and feel no remorse or regret whatsoever. As his defense team argued, he believed this was his prerogative as head of state.”

    Merely acknowledging that life was not “fear-free” doesn’t begin to address the situation.

  80. 97

    Daddy Love spews:

    93 TRM

    Bush believes that his prerogatives as head of state do not require him to follow the laws passed by Congress.

    But, you know, I wonder what kind of statement I would have to make to pass muster with you. Don’t bother answering, I’m not that interested.

  81. 100

    Daddy Love spews:

    The fact that the people who are being disappeared and tortured or killed by the Bush administration are not your neighbors or your family makes it OK?

  82. 101

    The Real Mark spews:

    DL @ 97 & 98

    There are times when I can almost take you seriously and then there are times when you let your Lefty Freak Flag fly and… I just shake my head and roll my eyes in pity.

    But, since you’re not without any redeeming qualities, I’ll let you in on a secret: I just got the memo from my friends at the Vast Right Wing Conspiracy home offices. The black helicopters will be in your area tonight. Stay inside and you’ll be OK.

  83. 102

    Daddy Love spews:

    99 TRM

    Give me a break. It is no secret that A) the US has been torturing detainees in Iraq at Abu Ghraib, B) the US government has been torturing and complicit in mass murder in Afghanistan (documentary film, Massacre in Mazar, by Irish director Jamie Doran, and this years Acaddmy Award winner for Best Documentary “Taxi to the Dark Side,” a film by Alex Gibney and Eva Orner which documents the U.S. military engaging in torture around the globe), and C-) that the US government has rendered others to be tortured by third party nations on our behalf, like Canadian citizen Maher Arar

    As I said, if it’s not your neighbors or your family who are being tortured and disappeared, it’s OK, right? After all, it’s just brown people, not like your white eastern Eurpean family members. Why should you care about them? Filthy beggars, they’re all just “terrorists,” not like real people.

  84. 103

    YLB spews:

    83 – yawn.. I’d take Media Matters’ record over the right wing bullshit shites like MRC any day.

    Nothing radical about Scaife funded bullshit at all.

  85. 105

    sempersimper spews:

    @84 Puddy

    Can’t you read, you fucking idiot???

    THERE ARE NO COMMENTS for those links.

    That’s why I told you to check them.


  86. 106

    The Blatantly Obvious spews:

    @ 104 Has asking Buddypud to actually read anything ever brought a positive result?

    I am guessing the answer is no.

    Buddypud has his own “inner truth” that no one else has ever been able to penetrate.

    Buddypud is like the Buddha, if you rub his belly, you will get a groan that only the Mighty Buddypud can interpret!**

    ** He calls them PuddyFacts.

  87. 107

    Sempersimper spews:

    I’m done even reading him. He’s just a psycho wrapped up in his own little world, doesn’t even comprehend what’s written.

    Network engineer, my ass.

  88. 108

    SETEC Astronomy spews:

    @82 It would be an extraordinarily difficult proposition to source documents which contradict the findings of ISG. Were such documents to exist, they would certainly still retain a level of classification to make them inaccessible to the American public. You’re challenging a mime to ‘state his case’ in this instance.

    The Al-Husein ballistic missile system, present in Iraq as early as the late 1980s posessed a range in excess of 600km, and were considered viable delivery vehicles for the product of their $10B/annual nuclear program investment. (also, for a 2003 tidbit).

    As early as 1981, Iraq’s progress toward a credible nuclear program was considered a critical threat.

    I personally find credibility with Gen. Hussein Kamel’s admission that Iraq’s biological warfare program had been decimated by 1995 (excluding research & design elements). However, coupled with the well-documented employ of such chemical weapons in the Halebjah region (must I source that, as well, or is Google still running?), I don’t find it a hard stretch at all to believe the Iraqi regime was biding time.

    Do I think there is incontravertible — even highly suggestive — evidence of a viable Iraqi WMD program at the point the issue was presented as casus belli? No. I don’t believe it existed at the time. I do believ past actions, state of program advancement, budgetary investment, and preservation of key program elements strongly suggested an imminent restoration of that threat.

    Now…wanna see something really scary?

  89. 110

    Hannah spews:

    @108 – no doubt SCCCCAAAARRRRYYYYY!!!! Hopefully a nuke from Iraq can’t reach us here in Seattle!