Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Sick of Republican False Claims About the WMD Debate Before the War?

I am too. But here is a post I made with some information I dredged up in an argument with a govenment apoligist on another message board: What all you Bush supporters have failed to address is this question: Why did Bush invade while the weapons inspectors were still in Iraq and finding nothing? Bush invaded anyways because he guessed that the weapons inspectors were wrong. Why do you support a war started on a flawed guess? Shouldn't a rational leader require proof first? You want evidence of people saying there were no WMD in Iraq??? You got it. Colin Powell and Condoleeza Rice themselves said he had no WMD. Take a look here: VIDEO EVIDENCE

He has not developed any significant capability with respect to weapons of mass destruction. He is unable to project conventional power against his neighbors. Colin Powell; Cairo, Egypt, 02/24/2001
Oh, really, Mr. Powell?
"We are able to keep his arms from him. His military forces have not been rebuilt." Condoleeza Rice, July, 2001
What's that Ms. Rice? Are you saying that Saddam was not a threat? From this pre-war article in the Guardian, we learn:
But some of the key allegations against the Iraqi regime were not supported by intelligence currently available to the administration. Mr Bush repeated a claim already made by senior members of his administration that Iraq has attempted to import hardened aluminium tubes "for gas centrifuges, which are used to enrich uranium for nuclear weapons". The tubes were also mentioned by Tony Blair in his dossier of evidence presented to parliament last month. However, US government experts on nuclear weapons and centrifuges have suggested that they were more likely to be used for making conventional weapons. "I would just say there is not much support for that [nuclear] theory around here," said a department of energy specialist. David Albright, a physicist and former UN weapons inspector who was consulted on the purpose of the aluminium tubes, said it was far from clear that the tubes were intended for a uranium centrifuge. Mr Albright, who heads the Institute for Science and International Security, a Washington thinktank, said: "There's a catfight going on about this right now. On one side you have most of the experts on gas centrifuges. On the other you have one guy sitting in the CIA."
There is already considerable scepticism among US intelligence officials about Mr Bush's claims of links between Iraq and al-Qaida. In his speech on Monday, Mr Bush referred to a "very senior al-Qaida leader who received medical treatment in Baghdad this year". An intelligence source said the man the president was referring to was Abu Musab Zarqawi, who was arrested in Jordan in 2001 for his part in the "millennium plot" to bomb tourist sites there. He was subsequently released and eventually made his way to Iraq in search of treatment. However, intercepted telephone calls did not mention any cooperation with the Iraqi government. There is also profound scepticism among US intelligence experts about the president's claim that "Iraq has trained al-Qaida members in bomb-making and poisons and deadly gases". Bob Baer, a former CIA agent who tracked al-Qaida's rise, said that there were contacts between Osama bin Laden and the Iraqi government in Sudan in the early 1990s and in 1998: "But there is no evidence that a strategic partnership came out of it. I'm unaware of any evidence of Saddam pursuing terrorism against the United States."
Also, this book was written and published before we invaded Iraq. And it comes from Scott Ritter, a weapons inspector himself. I bought this book in the Winter of 2002. It has turned out to be dead on accurate. So, in conclusion, a review of the evidence shows that a majority of experts, including Colin Powell and Condoleeza Rice themselves thought Saddam did not have an intact WMD program before the war. This completely refutes the Republican false claim that everyone thought there were WMD in Iraq, and proves that Rice and Powell were overtly lying about it. So now, we have proven that there was serious doubt that Iraq had WMD, the primary justification Bush used to start the war. And that Rice and Powell were being intentionally deceptive. And that the people who knew the most about it, the weapons inspectors, were the most skeptical. And Bush decided that he didn't care what they were saying, and invaded anyway.

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

What Democrats Stand For

I never considered myself a liberal until Bush took office. In fact, I used to be a Limbaugh listener. But the reality of it is, the Republican party is doing exactly the opposite of what all their hype was about during the Clinton years. The power of the federal government has expanded at an explosive rate, as has government pork. Spending has exploded, and the Iraq War is the major cause. Ethics in government has hit a point far lower than it ever did under Clinton. Nothing is conservative about the Bush administration except for the tax cuts for the top 2 percent. And I don't even agree with that. But despite all this, the right-wing media licks Bush's nuts every step of the way. In reality, there is no responsibility...there is no right and left. There is just corrupt and more corrupt in Washington, and Bush and the Republicans have just taken it to the next level. They have blazed new trails in regards to misinforming the public. They have forged new paths in regards to cronyism in government. The past five years has caused me to question all I was ever taught as a conservative. And questioning it has led to a realization that liberalism has built this country into what we love about it. Liberalism in the US raised work standards for everyone around the world. We got the 40 hour work week, overtime pay and voting rights for non-property owners, women and minorities. We got social security for the elderly to keep them out of poverty. We got national parks that are kept in good shape for us to vacation on. We got a (once) strong public schooling system, we have safety standards on toys and products to protect our kids from accidental death, health standards for restaurants and we have ended discrimination. The Republican party hasn't brought us anything like this in its entire history, with the exception of the abolition of slavery. But that was when the Republican party was more liberal than the Democratic party. Nearly everyone in this entire country depends day in and day out on one or another liberal program. My friend's gun nut ex-firefighter dad complains all day that liberals should be shot, but he has retired on a fat pension that the liberals got for him, drives a Cadillac, and now had his liberal health insurance pay for his wife's cancer surgery. Have some things been taken too far, such as frivolous lawsuits and political correctness? Yes, but people have to remember that this is not everyone all of the time. Corporate regulation is entirely necessary if we want to live in a decent society. Some political correctness is necessary to make people aware of the prejudices that are ingrained into our unconscious minds. There is no arguing against that. Look at the countries where there are few to no workers rights or unions. Look at the conditions these workers live under. Should we really advocate for that here? The fact is that every woman has liberals to thank for their right to vote. Every minority has liberals to thank for their vote. Every non-property owner has liberals to thank for their right to vote. Everyone that ever worked a week in their life has liberals to thank that the standard work week is 40 hours. Anyone who has received overtime pay has liberals to thank. Anyone that has a grandmother or mother or father or grandfather on social security has liberals to thank. Anyone that has ever been informed by public television has liberals to thank. Anyone who has ever had Medicare or Medicaid cover part of their health care costs has liberals to thank. Anyone who has retired on the pension of a police officer or firefighter and had the freedom to buy a nice car from it has liberals to thank. Anyone who has ever had kids has had liberals to thank for advocating for safer products. Anyone who has ever taken out a low-interest college loan has liberals to thank. Anyone who has ever vacationed at Yellowstone or another national park for a nominal fee has liberals to thank. Anyone who has ever enjoyed the pristine wilderness still left in this country has liberals to thank. And after all this, the right wing media calls liberals traitors, weak, silly, wrong, deceitful, communists, and a whole slew of other things. But for the most part, the liberals are responsible for the high standard of living the middle class and the lower class have here. And the right-wing media says that is a bad thing. And we still pay nearly nothing in taxes compared to other developed nations. Go figure.

Pseudo-Journalism in Milwaukee: "The Warrior" Prints Only Part of t > l Letter to the Editor; Omits Our Correction of Their False Claims

The Warrior (an upstart outlet specializing in the repetition of conservative misinformation and wallowing in their own self-pity) has selectively published a piece of the letter to the editor truth > lies sent them. As seen in this post, truth > lies dismantled an article that attempted to smear and expose "inaccuracies" in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. The letter t > l sent to editor Diana Sroka corrected point-by-point the weak arguments and false claims made by "The Warrior". In response, The Warrior selectively published two sentences of the truth > lies letter to the editor (credited to "The Couga"), and omitted the correction of their "facts". The Warrior, riddled with grammatical errors and baseless claims, has now stooped to a new low, misrepresenting the truth > lies position by omitting the majority of the content of the letter (and publishing without permission a selected part) to suit their own purposes. Furthermore, truth > lies editor JohnnyCougar was never offered a response, nor was a retaraction of Sroka's baseless claims made. With these moves, "The Warrior" cements itself in time as a manifestation of ego rather than a source of accurate information.

Monday, December 19, 2005

Bush Admits to Impeachable Offense

Bush is making it very easy for the Democrats to impeach him once they gain the majority in both houses of Congress. John Dean (former counsel to Nixon) and Barbara Boxer (D-CA) agree that Bush admitting to spying on Americans without a warrant is an impeachable offense. Boxer's letter to constitutional scholars is here:

On December 16, along with the rest of America, I learned that President Bush authorized the National Security Agency to spy on Americans without getting a warrant from a judge. President Bush underscored his support for this action in his press conference today. On Sunday, December 18, former White House Counsel John Dean and I participated in a public discussion that covered many issues, including this surveillance. Mr. Dean, who was President Nixon’s counsel at the time of Watergate, said that President Bush is “the first President to admit to an impeachable offense.” Today, Mr. Dean confirmed his statement. This startling assertion by Mr. Dean is especially poignant because he experienced first hand the executive abuse of power and a presidential scandal arising from the surveillance of American citizens. Given your constitutional expertise, particularly in the area of presidential impeachment, I am writing to ask for your comments and thoughts on Mr. Dean’s statement. Unchecked surveillance of American citizens is troubling to both me and many of my constituents. I would appreciate your thoughts on this matter as soon as possible. Sincerely, Barbara Boxer United States Senator
Bush seems to be the first in a lot of endeavors...starting a war based on lies, openly advocating for torture by the government, admitting to spying on Americans. Hey, wait! Aren't these the things that Saddam Hussein did? Maybe the reason Bush really invaded Iraq was because of jealousy!

truth > lies® Welcomes the FBI and NSA to Its Webpage

In light of the news that the American government under the Bush administration is spying on peace protestors, truth > lies® would like to issue a warm-hearted welcome to the government agents monitoring anti-war activities in this country, thanks in part to the USA PATRIOT Act. In this time of trouble, it is important for our government to track the activities of people who advocate for peace, because after all, they might just love the terrorists. See, peaceful people are really just dissidents that want to blow stuff up. That's why the government needs to secretly track opposition to its violent policies. And according to this article, even the Quakers are posing a threat to America. Yes, that's right, an innocent group of Quakers threatens the government in control of the most weapons in the history of the world. That's why we need to spy on them. An excerpt:

To the rest of us, the revelation in the New York Times that the National Security Agency has been eavesdropping on people within the United States without judicial warrants was stunning. In one of the more egregious cases of governmental overreach in the aftermath of 9/11, Bush secretly authorized the monitoring, without any judicial oversight, of international phone calls and e-mail messages from the United States. The news came on the same day that Congress voted not to extend controversial aspects of the soon-to-expire Patriot Act, and on the heels of disturbing reports that the Pentagon's shadowy Counterintelligence Field Activity office has been keeping tabs on domestic antiwar groups, including monitoring Quaker meetings, under the guise of protecting military installations. The program is reminiscent of official efforts to spy on antiwar groups in the 1960s.
Yeah...the Quakers are going to overthrow the government here by stoning the president with their hats......or something. That's why we need to spy on them.

Sunday, December 11, 2005

Bob Baer Summarizes Realistically the Situation in Iraq

In this video clip, Bob Baer, a former CIA employee, gives a no bullshit view of what is going to happen in Iraq. We have created a civil war over there, and it's not going to end soon. And the way things are turning out, Iraq may prove to be more oppressive under its new government than it was under Saddam Hussein.

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

¡Viva Chávez! ¡Vive la revolución de Bolívar!

Hugo Chávez, the democratically elected leader of Venezuela, is under fire from Republican critics for trying to "control the media" and "subverting human rights" in Venezuela. But this is all hogwash. Venezuela has had 11 elections in 7 years, and the authenticity of the elections has been verified by outside organizations as fair and just (unlike the American election of 2004, which was condemned around the world by human rights organizations for being crooked as a dog's hind leg). Hugo Chávez has retained power in all of them and gained in the last few. So why do Republicans hate him and want to assassinate him? Because he has nationalized Venezuela's oil supply. It's as simple as that. American and British oil companies want control of his oil markets, and they (like they did with Saddam Hussein) want to overthrow Chávez's government so that they can control more of the oil market share and raise the prices of oil. But Chávez is using profits from Citgo, the Venezuelan state oil company, to clean up the massive slums in Venezuela, feed the poor, and educate the country. He is trying to turn the nation into a first-world country, and defeat poverty. Chávez has even offered to sell heating oil to the poor in the United States at a 40% discount. Some deals with east-coast cities have already been made. We all know how much Republicans hate educating the poor, so this obviously infuriates them to no end. Lately, the anti-Chávez propaganda in this country has been amped up by friends of the American oil companies. It is your responsibility as a free-thinking citizen to meet this anti-Chávez propaganda with intense scrutiny. Chávez has already survived an attempted coup that was likely supported by right-wing groups in America. Pat Robertson, mouthpiece for the religious right, has publicly called for Chávez's assassination. But Chávez remains immensely popular in Venezuela, and his reform efforts are attempting to bring a potentially powerful nation out of the shadows and into the first world. I suppose this means get your gas at Citgo from now on, an oil company that does not believe that it is okay to start wars and murder people simply to expand market share.

Monday, December 05, 2005

Dear Bill O'Reilly

Dear Bill O'Reilly,

You do not understand Christmas.  Nor do you understand Jesus.  If anyone is starting a War on Christmas, it is you.  Your ranting and raving about commerce dissociating itself with the name Christmas in the last months of the year has turned Jesus' birthday into a political war.  Is nothing sacred with you?  Is the day Christ was born just a pile of political fodder for you?  An opportunity to raise your ratings?  Do you really know the principles of Christ?  Do you have any clue as to the principals on which this country was founded? My ancestors founded this country.  They have been here since the early 1700's.  I would like to know how long your ancestors have been here.  How long?  Do you know why my ancestors came here?  Because the wanted freedom of religion!  They were being tortured and burned at the stake because their religion did not match up with that of the government at the time.  They came here because they wanted a place where religion had nothing to do with government, and vice versa.  They did this because they knew the perils of living in a country where the government decided the religion for the people.  Every time you lobby for more religion in government, you slap my ancestors and the founders of this country in the face.  They founded this country so they could practice their religion, not their government, you nitwit.  They did this because they were Christians being persecuted by other Christians!  Ever had the Reichstag put a price on your head, Bill O'Reilly?

Furthermore, my ancestors knew Jesus.  They knew him as a humble man who cared not about shopping and materialism and consumerism.  He didn't care about material gifts, He cared about spiritual gifts.  You mock His name every time you associate Christmas with materialism.  Do you think Jesus would boycott a store because it didn't say "Merry Christmas?"  Do you think Jesus would even care?  He would not waste His time with trivialities such as those you are engaging in.  He would be spreading His word of Peace, Love, and Understanding.  I doubt you, Bill O'Reilly, have the courage to show anybody love.  All I ever hear coming out of your mouth is hate and complaints.  Jesus cared about selflessness, not ratings.  Jesus cared about the spiritual health of others, not the economic health of shopping centers.  Jesus believed that faith resided inside your heart, not on a sign outside Wal Mart.  The one time Jesus got mad was at the money changers in the Temple.  Well you, sir, are a money changer in the temple.  You are turning Jesus' birthday into a political opportunity.  You are making an issue out of this for ratings.  And you mock Him by making His birthday an economic issue over a triviality.  And you mock my ancestors and the founders of this country everytime you try to bring religion into politics and government.

Bill O'Reilly, you are a mockery of everything Jesus, the founders of America, and my ancestors stood for.  And I am not going to take it anymore.  And I have friends.  LOTS OF THEM!  So the next time you or anyone tries to put God into the government, or put the words "under God" into the pledge of allegiance, you better hope Jesus doesn't come again and upturn your money changing tables.  And you better hope that my ancestors and the founding fathers of the United States of America don't haunt your sorry ass for the rest of your life.