Friday, October 14, 2005

J.C. Watts: Two-Percenter

What is this fool talking about? From News Hounds:

Last night, Alan Colmes asked former Republican Congressman J.C. Watts why Democrats are being blamed for politicizing the Supreme Court nomination process. Watts replied, "I think one of the things that pleases the left more than anything is conservative on conservative crime and probably the only thing that's more enlightening or better for them is black on black crime."

Thursday, October 13, 2005

A Bogus "Deal" on the Iraqi Constituion

I think the New York Times editorial board is way too hopeful here. This "agreement" between a subset of the Sunnis and the Kurds/Shia on the Iraq contitution -- vote for it now, and maybe you can amend it later -- is a sucker's deal of historic proportions. All it will do is kick the can further down the road. As soon as the Sunnis try their hand at amending the document to better reflect their wishes some time next year and find themselves voted down along sectarian lines, we'll be right back where we started. Pissed and frightened Sunnis turning a blind eye to the Sunni-led insurgency attacks on other Iraqi civilians, leading to the threat of all-out civil war.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

Bush Approval Is 2% Among Blacks

Apparently, watching thousands of one's people drown, starve and dehydrate while the man responsible for assisting them squeezes a couple of extra days out of his vacation tends to make folks appropriately cranky. According to NBC's Tim Russert, the network's latest poll has only 2% of blacks saying they approve of the job Bush is doing as president. Those are Ku Klux Klan-like levels. I bet Newt Gingrich had better numbers than that among blacks as Speaker of the House during the Clinton impeachment. I bet Jefferson Davis had better numbers as the president of the Confederacy during the Civil War. Apparently Condi Rice, Minister T.D. Jakes, Ken Blackwell, and a tiny handful of other sellouts are the only black folks left in America still willing to support this monkey.

Meanwhile, it seems that the perfect storm of the Iraq debacle, high gas prices, fatal incompetence, cascading corruption investigations, and the worst Supreme Court nomination in US history have given the Democrats their best shot to make significant gains in Congress for the first time in decades. The only question is: do they have what it takes (courage, a humanely-centered vision, self esteem, etc.) to capitalize? (Click on the video on the right side of the above-linked page to hear Russert's commentary)

WASHINGTON - It has been weeks since Hurricane Katrina slammed into the Gulf Coast; since gas prices began spiking to record highs; and since Cindy Sheehan, whose son was killed in Iraq, held her antiwar vigil outside President Bush’s Texas ranch. But, according to the latest NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll, the fortunes of the Bush administration and the Republican Party have not yet begun to recover.

For the first time in the poll, Bush’s approval rating has sunk below 40 percent, while the percentage believing the country is heading in the right direction has dipped below 30 percent.

[snip]

In addition, with 13 months until the 2006 congressional elections, 48 percent say they prefer a Democratic-controlled Congress, compared with 39 percent who want the Republicans to control Capitol Hill. In fact, that nine-point difference is the largest margin between the parties in the 11 years the NBC/Journal poll has been tracking this question.

[snip]

Because of this generally sour attitude, the NBC/Journal pollsters doubt that Bush will be able to climb out of his standing anytime soon. "His trampoline [is] made of cement," Hart said.

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

Mission Accomplished, New York Eases Subway Alert

The subway threat was nonexistent. But it sure gave Mike a good excuse for not being at the Harlem debate last week. Bloomberg is definitely studying the Bush Playbook.


New York officials scaled back security in the city's subways yesterday after federal and local law enforcement authorities discounted the report of a terrorist threat to the city's underground transportation system.

Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg said that the extraordinary measures put in place on Thursday - police officers on every train, major shows of force at transportation centers - would be relaxed, but that the city would continue many of the enhanced measures it has taken to protect the subways since the bombings in London in July.

"There was no there there," one senior United States counterterrorism official said of the possible threat that surfaced publicly late last week.

From the outset, some federal officials, including those with the Department of Homeland Security, questioned just how real a plot against the subway system had been, and while some supported the city's measures, at least one official said he was astonished by how the city had reacted.

[snip]

Law enforcement officials, speaking on the condition of anonymity because the information in the case is classified, said that an American investigation, conducted largely in Iraq, has yielded no evidence that a plot was in motion or being actively
contemplated. The outlines of the alleged plot, based on the word of an informant, were that Al Qaeda operatives in Iraq were coordinating with others, some perhaps already in New York, to hide bombs in baby strollers, packages and briefcases and blow them up in subways.

But the officials said that after taking the three men into custody last week in Iraq, they found no fake passports, no travel documents, no viable travel route from Iraq to New York, and no apparent contact or telephone calls from those in Iraq to people in New York. In addition, the officials said that two of the men detained in Iraq had been given polygraph tests that indicated they were not part of any plot.

[snip]

Fernando Ferrer, Mr. Bloomberg's Democratic challenger in the race for mayor, issued a statement yesterday saying that the mayor should disclose what, and when, he knew about the threat, and precisely why he acted as he did. Edward Skyler, a spokesman for Mr. Bloomberg, said that during such an extensive investigation, "the mayor doesn't have the luxury of knowing whether the threat will ultimately be determined to be credible or not."

Are We In High School?

It looks like Bush nominated Miers for the Supreme Court basically because she had a massive crush on him.

AUSTIN, Tex., Oct. 10 - "You are the best governor ever - deserving of great respect," Harriet E. Miers wrote to George W. Bush days after his 51st birthday in July 1997. She also found him "cool," said he and his wife, Laura, were "the greatest!" and told him: "Keep up the great work. Texas is blessed."

Ms. Miers, President Bush's personal lawyer and his selection for a Supreme Court seat, emerges as an unabashed fan in more than 2,000 pages of official correspondence and personal notes made public on Monday by the Texas State Library and Archives Commission in response to open-records requests.