Friday, June 04, 2004

Best News All Year

MTV reports that Creed has broken up, proving the band's Christian-themed music correct: There IS a God!

"Even if you loved us or hated us," Phillips emphasized, "remember us."
Wait, what were we talking about again?

- Marc
So That's How Interviews Work

From another European Q&A with Bush, this time for Paris Match Magazine:

THE PRESIDENT Let me finish my -- you ask a question, I give you the answers. And then if you want to ask another question, you're allowed to do so.
From my experience in journalism, I always assumed that the interviewer got to decide which questions to ask and when to ask them, not the interviewee. But I'm glad that Bush will "allow" journalists to do their job after he finishes each off-topic filibuster.

- Marc
Still in the Red

As the Bushies crow about three whole months of employment gains in four years, remember this thought from Brad DeLong:

Payroll employment would have to grow at an average pace of 850,000 per month (yes, that's eight hundred fifty thousand per month) in the next two months to get us back onto the midyear employment forecast the administration released last February.
Maybe I'd be less skeptical if Fritz, my father and I weren't still unemployed. Three months out of 41 ain't bad, George! But it's not so good, either.

- Marc
Oh. Iraq.

A classic and overlooked moment from President Bush's interview June 1 for Italian TV:

Q Some Europeans blame you for having kept them out of the decision to go to the war in Iraq.


Q Do you think this is the real reason for present difficulties?

THE PRESIDENT: Well, first of all, I don't see many difficulties. You mean in Iraq?

Q In Iraq.

The interviewer also asked the "Did you make any mistakes?" question. This time Bush had a ready answer. Here's the sound of a man admitting an error: "Listen, any time you go to war, circumstances change."

Circumstances may change, but apparently some people never do.

- Marc
Is That Peter Fucking Frampton?

No, it's the Frames. I reviewed their recent live effort for PopMatters.

- Marc

Thursday, June 03, 2004

Thursday Massacre Continues

It's not just Tenet. MSNBC reports that CIA director of operations James Pavitt will resign tomorrow, as well.

I don't believe that anyone truly knows what this all means, but as soon as I have my own crackpot theory, I'll let you know.

- Marc
High on Cope

I caught my first show last night at New York's Sin-e, famous for hosting Jeff Buckley's early concerts (for those of you who don't know, I now live in NY, while my co-blogger Fritz remains a Chicagoan).

In a loose, laid-back set, soulful singer/songwriter Citizen Cope showed why AMG cleverly dubbed him an "urban beatnik." Check out "Bullet and a Target," definitely the funkiest song to name-check "Zeus and Apollo and Adonis." Somehow the crowd knew all the words to tunes from Cope's forthcoming album, The Clarence Greenwood Recordings.

- Marc
Slam Dunk'd

George Tenet resigns.

Guess he was taking Al Gore's advice.

More: Schumer says, "Don't make him a fall guy for anything." Amen.

And a round-up of opinions from the blogosphere: Atrios, Kos, Political Animal, Josh Marshall, Spencer Ackerman, Matthew Yglesias

- Marc
Let the Eagle Soar

Fritz, loyal readers: Check out the trailer for Fahrenheit 9-11. Even for a Moore skeptic, it looks like the film hits all the major points, and hits them with aplomb.

- Marc

Wednesday, June 02, 2004

Do I Know What Rhetorical Means?

Yes. Yes, I do. But does Bush know what "totalitarian" means?

Today he described terrorism as a "totalitarian movement" in his address to the Air Force Academy. "Like other totalitarian movements," he said, "the terrorists seek to impose a grim vision in which dissent is crushed, and every man and woman must think and live in colorless conformity."

Trouble is, terrorists aren't associated with any particular state or government, which is precisely what makes them so dangerous. But it doesn't make them totalitarian.

Let's check
Of, relating to, being, or imposing a form of government in which the political authority exercises absolute and centralized control over all aspects of life, the individual is subordinated to the state, and opposing political and cultural expression is suppressed
Now who does THAT sound like?

- Marc
Imagine There's a Gulag

"Visualize No Liberals," says a sign in a Bush-Cheney campaign video. So much for democracy.

Watch for the approving close-up here, about 19 seconds in.

You may say Bush is a dreamer, but he's not the only one (via Irregular Times).

Update: Speaking to the motorcycle group who originally brandished the sign, Bush said, "I'm really proud to have you stand by me."

- Marc
Vice President John Glenn?

The National Review's John Miller sees no reason why not. Whatever Miller's motives, he has a point. Glenn's ego certainly wouldn't let him turn down the job.

- Marc

Tuesday, June 01, 2004

'Besides, He's Never Had Any Coordination'

AP reports:
A Pentagon e-mail indicates that a multimillion-dollar Halliburton contract for Iraqi reconstruction was "coordinated" with the office of Vice President Dick Cheney, the company's former chief executive.


A Cheney spokesman says the vice president "has played no role whatsoever in government-contract decisions involving Halliburton" since 2000.

(via DailyKos's dwalker)
Gotcha, Dick.

- Marc
Dead or Alive, or Not

Bush today: "This guy, Zarqawi, an al Qaeda associate -- who was in Baghdad, by the way, prior to the removal of Saddam Hussein -- is still at large in Iraq. And as you might remember, part of his operational plan was to sow violence and discord amongst the various groups in Iraq by cold-blooded killing. And we need to help find Zarqawi so that the people of Iraq can have a more bright -- bright future."

Wait, who? The guy who, according to MSNBC, the Bush administration could have killed but didn't because it would have weakened their case to invade? Oh, right. That Zarqawi.

- Marc
Who's the Rube?

Ah, David Brooks. Whenever I start to worry that I'll never blog again, this noble scribe goes and writes something.

Thus sprach Brooksy:
They decided to do what was necessary to head off any immediate catastrophe. As Stephen Friedman, director of the National Economic Council, sums it up, "We didn't want to err on the light side when it comes to stimulus." Hence, the large tax cuts.
Emphasis mine, of course. Idiocy (or ingenuousness) all Brooksy's.

You see, Bush wanted cut taxes no matter what. Stimulus, shmimulus. Quoth the Prez: "If there's a recession it's important to cut taxes to make sure the economy grows... It's also important to cut the taxes where there's times of plenty... It's important to cut the taxes to make sure Washington, D.C., does not spend the surplus... This is not only no new taxes. This is tax cuts, so help me God."

(Later it became, "This is Iraq war, so help me God.")

Brooksy finishes by puffing his feathers a bit: "I realize it's now practically illegal to have modulated views about anything related to the Bush administration, but..."

Yes, Brooksy, you're an outlaw hero. Thank you so much for your brave inability to take an honest stand. When a single party controls all branches of government, either you're for it or against it. I don't understand why it's so admirable to stand up and say "Republicans are doing... so-so. Re-elect them!" There's no one else to blame! As a guy I usually tend not to quote once said, "Moderation in the pursuit of justice is no virtue."

Kicking Brooksy around in defense of liberty is no vice.

Update: Josh Marshall says it far better than I.
- Marc

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