Monday, November 14, 2005

Keep Floatin on De Nile Rush!

Rush Limbaugh, originally uploaded by Wazdat!.

Does OxiContin Give Flashbacks?

I just read the transcript of Wednesday's Limbaugh rant.

Limbaugh just can't come to grips with reality, can he? He goes on, ignoring real setbacks like Hitler in his bunker, moving paper armies on a table. Not wanting to acknowledge what looks to be the banshee call of the neocon right, he prefers to wear his political rose-colored glasses, while accusing Democrats and liberals of living in an alternate reality!

Here's his tortured logic about the Democrat view of the situation:

"RUSH: Have you noticed when the liberals lose elections, the elections were stolen? I toyed with the idea today of trying to start this big movement that all these elections were flawed yesterday and that the voting machines were tampered with and that people tried to vote and weren't allowed to vote and there was discrimination against conservatives, and I wanted to lead the charge, saying these elections are illegitimate because they were stolen. But then I stopped, and then I realized, no, that's not the way to go about it. Because, as losers in these elections, those that we lost, we're actually the power. We're the winners, because the minority has rights! So the minority is actually the winners. We are in the minority; we probably now control New Jersey and Virginia. This is a lesson we have learned from the left. The left, the Democrats lost the Senate but they say they still run it, minority rights and so forth. "

No Rush, no Democrats ever said that they controlled the Senate or the House as a minority! Not when John Conyers had to hold hearings on the Downing Street Memos in the basement. Not when John Sensennbrenner could suddenly adjourn a meeting and turn off the mics of the opposition off when it suited him. You had John Roberts's nomination readjusted from for Associate Justice to Chief Justice at Dubya's leisure. And he won! Harriet Myers’s nomination failed because the right was not impressed with her! And look at all the pork that got passed! Certainly, no Democrat would have stood for a tax cut for the top 1% of the population while leaving the other 99% high and dry! And would the Democratic Senate have allowed Bush to get away with letting drug companies determine the price of prescription drugs? I don't think so! And then there were the various indignities that a Republican Senate made the nation submit to, like the Schiavo case, useless bans on flag burning and the like.

And yet, Rush is always in the habit of glossing over inconvenient things like facts:

"In fact, we actually won last night because we lost, as in the same thing with Paul Hackett. Did Paul Hackett win? No, he lost, but he won! Well, we lost, so we won! It's a great day! See how you play this if you're a Democrat? They're making all this noise. What they did was hold two seats that they already had. This was what everybody's talking about, the governor's race. I said yesterday, "It's the Democrats that face the test." The Democrats were the incumbents in New Jersey and Virginia."

Tim Kaine was BEHIND for most of the time in Virginia! Only in October did he overtake Kilgore, and only by a 6 point margin. Pretty good for an underdog, but it could have been better!

The Rassmussen Report for November 2nd had a very informative breakdown:

"Last week, Kaine was ahead by just two percentage points, 46% to 44%. The candidates have been within three points of each other in six consecutive polls conducted since Labor Day.

This is the fourth straight 2005 Virginia election poll with "leaners" included in the totals. Leaners are those who initially do not express a preference for either major party candidate but lean one way or the other when asked a follow-up question.

Without leaners, Tim Kaine has a one-point edge, 46% to 45%, over Jerry Kilgore."

All that changed AFTER Dubya's visit, and Kaine SHOT UP by 6 points. Bush has coattails. Only "born on third base, thinks he hit a triple" can't see that he is the one stuck in quicksand, and stuffed his hem in Kilgore's hand. Even in some very conservative areas, Bush was at best ineffectual, at worst a pariah. By the way, both of Virginia's U.S. Senators are Republicans, and 8 out of 11 House members are also Republican. Also, does El Rushbo know that Virginia's House of Delegates is Republican? The Dems control the state Senate, the governorship and lieutenant governorship. See how honest I can be Rush? You should try it some time!

There were 2 elections Rush. And if I'm not mistaken, any domestic transgression done by Dubya can be "mistook'' for local. But tell that to Captain Delusional who says:

"For example, the elections yesterday are not harbingers of what's going to happen in 2006, and this is a historical trend, goes back ten years, in some states 20 years and others. These are state races, local races.

The national agenda was not a factor here. Let's go New Jersey first. In New Jersey, does anybody really ever expect a Republican to be the governor of that state? "

Maybe you'll listen to a fellow conservative, Pat Buchanan, who strangely enough, we don't hear from the Right about anymore. In his article for Human Events, Bush Leaves GOP in Crisis,"he writes:

"Both Bushes abandoned the economic patriotism that had put America and Americans first for free-trade globalism. Result: the most massive trade deficits in U.S. history, the gutting of our industrial base, the loss of millions of manufacturing jobs, and the largest wealth transfer of all time with technology, factories, high-tech and high-skilled jobs pouring out of America into Asia.

Working America and the middle class have been sacrificed on the high altar of the Republican Moloch of Free Trade. And how have our Chinese brothers reciprocated our magnanimity?

Both Bushes embraced the open borders immigration policy the Wall Street Journal has trumpeted for two decades. Result: We have 10-15 million illegal aliens in our country, among whom gangs like the murderous Mara Salvatrucha are proliferating. Native-born California taxpayers are fleeing the Golden State, as Third World tax consumers pour in. So great is the crisis on the Mexican border even the liberal Democratic governors of New Mexico and Arizona have declared states of emergency. Meanwhile 35,000 U.S. troops stand guard on the border of South Korea. "

Which local issue are we missing here? Jobs? You can either clean toilets, man the counter or, sit at a desk? Your manufacturing job in Newark, Pittsburgh, and Norfolk just went to Tientsin, Taipei, or Singapore.

Security? We are a joke! Our ports are open, our borders are open. Bush & Co. never met an illegal alien that they couldn't ignore! And they are a strain on our resources. I have much sympathy for them, they have fled a horrific situation povertywise, but our resources in this deficit-ridden country with high unemployment are in fact, quite strained. And we are leaving the matter up to a bunch of bear guzzling shotgun toters who have as much experience patrolling borders as a dog on kitty litter.

By the way Rush, did I mention that Paul Hackett ran a very close race in Ohio? Lots of jobs lost there.

Rush's attitude about Virginia is, well that's just the way things are:

''I really don't want to bash our guys, but it's clear if you look at some of the campaigning in Virginia, that you had a reluctant conservative on certain issues. He was pretty strong on some but when it came to taxes and other things he was indistinguishable from the Democrat that was running for governor. If you're going to run as a conservative do it confidentially and be bold about it and don't be timid. But, you know, conservatives in the Beltway area, northern Virginia is the heavily populated Democrat region of the state, you gotta go out and make sure you don't make anybody mad, don't offend anybody, the press, and all that. But if you want to know, I'm in a great mood today. I am not dispirited by it."

Seems to me you should be very dispirited by it. By your very own words it sounds like there are entire regions in Virginia with large liberal enclaves that may be getting larger as the economy gets worse. You said it yourself Rush:

"Northern Virginia, suburb of DC, has become heavily Democrat over the last ten years. It's still a Republican state because of the down state population but it's becoming less so.''

And (What the blazes!) even fact-ridden Wikipedia would agree with you there:

“An underdog for most of the race, Kaine overtook Kilgore in some polls for the first time in October 2005, and held his lead into the final week before the election, [2] even after a barrage of negative advertising against him by the campaign of his opponent, Jerry W. Kilgore. Surprisingly, the first poll to break down results by region showed Kaine with large leads in the Shenandoah Valley (+14), Greater Richmond (+9), Hampton Roads (+8) and Northern Virginia (+7).”

Now Rush wants us to think that the Democrats have always had unreliable judgements in political forecasting. He uses the last general election as his example. He may be forgiven, because many of us thought that what is happening now was going to happen then, and we were wrong. Kerry did not run a strong enough campaign, and this was before the assault on Social Security, which went down in flames, to be soon followed by the milestone of 2000 dead in Iraq, the Downing Street Memos, the Valerie Plame Affair, Cindy Sheehan's campaign and last but not least - Hurricanes Katrina, Rita and Wilma. We learned on the one hand, that Bush is willing to lie us into a pre-emptive war, that he does not care if someone dies in it, and on the other hand, he doesn't care a whit about his own citizen's misfortunes. Bush is now the one in quicksand. And he's pulling the Republicans in with him.

And that lovable lunatic El Rushbo seems hell bent on floatin' down de Nile. He tells a caller:

“It's not going to be a Bush election. They're going to cast it as a Bush election; that's my whole point. They're going to try to say that next year's congressional elections are Bush. They're not going to be. They're going to be about issues. This is where, if we just have candidates that go out and run confidently and boldly on issues, we can skunk the left because they're not going to have issues. They're going to be running against Bush who will not be on the ballot. "

Oh, but IT IS going to be a Bush election! Bush will be front and center and we will tie that can to every Republican's tail. Anyone in Tom DeLay's Rolodex will have Tar Baby Bush attached to his or her buttocks. The Republicans will have to run on Bush's record. It's Congress we will be electing, not dogcatcher!

And while the rats are scurrying off the sinking ship, Rush, with is rose-colored glasses sees them as rose petals strewn before the captain.

Rush Limbaugh Show - Status Quo holds in Election, Press Calls it Dem Sweep/ Bush Defeat

Rassmussen Report - Election - Virginia - 2005

Human Events - Bush Leaves GOP in Crisis by Patrick J. Buchanan Posted Nov 10, 2005

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

My Washington Diary

Cindy & Me 1, originally uploaded by Wazdat!.

For The Activist And The Tourista, It Was The Trip Of A Lifetime!

Day 1 Oct. 25, 2005

I started my sightseeing of DC today. Aside from the usual bickering of my family and my niece's Terrible Two's, my day in Washington was very much colored by the events of the day. I started by noticing the headlines of the Washington Post "Grand Jury Hears Summary of Case On CIA Leak Probe. Then we went down M St. to a nice Vietnamese place, where I was introduced to the succulent pleasures of roast quail! Anyone who had ham and maple syrup will understand me when I say: "Nothing ventured, nothing gained." I was in heaven! Then, on the way to the Mall, we came upon the State Department. Condi's Place. Already my sense of irony was in play.

As we were nearing the Lincoln Memorial, we went down to the Vietnam Veteran's Memorial. Imagine how appropriate it was to leave Condi's Digs and come upon a monument to another senseless war! As I saw the roster of all those dead men, l remembered a song by Eric Bogle called "The Green Fields of France.":

“Well, how do you do, young Willie McBride,
Do you mind if I sit here down by your graveside,
And rest for a while 'neath the warm summer sun,
I've been walkin' all day and I'm nearly done.

I see by your gravestone you were only nineteen,
When you joined the great fallen in nineteen sixteen,
I hope you died well and I hope you died clean,
Or young Willie McBride was it slow and unseen.

Did they beat the drum slowly, did they play the fife lowly?
Did they sound the death march as they lowered you down?
And did the band play The Last Post and Chorus?
Did the pipes play The Flowers Of The Forest?”

As I looked at that row upon row of names I saw many things. Things that told me how that war affected all races and classes. George and John Patton's names were there, I believe they were grandsons of Ol' Blood and Guts himself. I started looking for a few Ukrainian names. I may have found them. Names like: Wozniak, Ratajczak, Goszewsky and Dluzak. Some youth was tracing down a name, maybe a grandfather he never knew or a granduncle. I couldn't help but see the pattern. A war based on a lie, that wasted the lives of 58,000 men, and countless thousands of Vietnamese. I said to myself: "To the people, these are sons, fathers and brothers. To Dubya, these names are nothing more than scratches on a wall. Better make room for 2001 more names. " Then I thought: "Better make room for more." My mother said: "Nobody has learned anything from all this. Fifty Eight thousand men died needlessly, now this idiot has killed 2001 more."

Richard Wozniak could have been Polish, Czech or Ukrainian.

“I'm Willie McBride, I can't help wonder why
Do those that lie here know why did they die
And did they believe when they answered the call
Did they really believe that this war would end war.

For the sorrow, the suffering, the glory, the pain,
The killing, and the dying was all done in vain...
For, young Willie McBride, it all happened again,
and again, and again, and again, and again.”

I'll bet Mr. Ratajczak was a Ukrainian.

We saw the memorial to the black veterans, The Three Soldiers, those bewildered faces of men looking upon the names of their dead comrades, as they returned from a patrol long since over. I saw the face of Karl Rove, superimposed in my mind over these young boys. Rove the Spinner, the father to the lie that killed these young men's spiritual descendants.

We then proceded to the Reflecting Pool and the Lincoln Memorial. The Washington Monument loomed in the horizon, dwarfing the Capitol that appeared to be beside it. How appropriate. The reality never measures up to the ideal. My sister-in-law reminded me that we were standing on the spot where Martin Luther King gave his "I Have A Dream" speech. I imagined the thousands that were there to see Cindy Sheehan, and thousands there, 50 years before for the Poor People's March, then my mind went to the paltry 100 that showed up for Melanie Morgan and her glorification of war.

I climbed the stairs of the Lincoln Memorial. Anyone for Everest? But I had to see the Big Guy. Was he sitting in judgement over Dubya? Was he saying "Get out of my party?" It was as if I was looking at Zeus. He was large. I was sad to see the scaffolding. Yet in these cynical times it was appropriate. Bush wanted to remake everything. Why not the statue?

Day 2 Oct. 26, 2005

It's the other side of the Mall today. The kids are behaving so far. Hey! I love'em even when they misbehave! Too bad they won't be able to appreciate what they see today. Five years from now they'll be looking at themselves in pictures and still be disappointed for not remembering.

I'm listening to CNN now at 11:38 AM. I can't help but think that Libby was being sacrificed to save Rove.

It's 12:57 PM. I just got back to the suite with my sister-in-law and my oldest niece from birthday buying for my youngest. 1 year old todayl. My present for me: Libby has been indicted! His worm has turned. Now let's see if squeezing it gives us Rove or Cheney?

1:10 PM Libby resigns as Cheney's Chief of Staff!

2:55 PM: Libby is indicted on 5 counts:

2 counts perjury, 2 counts false statements, 1 count obstruction of justice.

Fitzgerald will have to impound a new grand jury to investigate Rove further.

I had the tour of my life today. And it ended in a way nobody would've expected! We took a sightseeing drive today. After rounding the West Mall, we saw the Jefferson Memorial. Next we stopped at Capitol Hill. The Folger Shakespeare Library was to our left, but that's for tomorrow. We went right over to the Supreme Court, a grand edifice if ever I saw one. I never saw a universe of marble like that one before. All around us, marble floors, marble steps and marble columns!

And on the other side? The Capitol! We were bothered by the construction, so l suggested that we go up the Supreme Court steps and take the Capitol's picture from there. The sun was against us, but it made for a more dramatic shot. I was standing on the Supreme Court steps! Getting pictures of the Capitol!

About the White House: I was under the impression that there would be storm troopers surrounding the place! Razor wire! Machine gun turrets! With so many areas barricaded so that cars had no access, and the long time it took to get there, l thought that the best we would do is get a glimpse of it 3 blocks away. Little did I know how close we would get! I thought we were lucky enough to get to Jackson's statue, but then I saw people walking on the grass and the sidewalk! So we ventured further! Taking pictures galore! I took a few pictures of my sister-in-law, she took one of me. All in front of the White House!

That's me!

Now our van was standing in a no-parking-after-4-zone, so my sister-in-law went back to take her turn waiting in the van. I stayed behind to go to the gate, and get the best damn White House pics you've ever seen! I also paid attention to the protesters. I talked with them. Told them to take heart because we kept the message alive in the hinterlands.They asked me where I was from. I said "Syracuse" I found out that one guy came from Cleveland, but had a son in Syracuse. The signs where fabulous! One guy was riding a scooter named "Libby!'' I went across the street to take a picture from the fence.

Then I turned around, and there she was! I knew that face was familiar! That worn out woolen hat and the dowdy brown coat! Those sunken cheeks! I asked her, "Excuse me, are you Mrs. Sheehan?" She said, "Please, call me Cindy." I told her about how we were doing things in Syracuse, that we were doing things there! Then I asked her if I could take her picture. She said yes! I was in nirvana! Ecstasy! Then I was looking for my brother, to give him the good news. I saw him across the street. I went over after he took a shot and told him: "I saw Cindy Sheehan!'' He says; "Where?" "Across the street!" So we went back to the fence, and I found Cindy again getting her picture taken, and we asked her if my brother could get a picture. He wanted ME to get in the picture WITH HER! So we clasped each other behind our backs, and I got an heirloom to treasure! Afterward we went back to the van. I couldn't wait to give everyone the news! We got to the van. I was bursting with the news! But my brother couldn't wait either, so he called ahead. When we got to the van, everyone was excited, begging us to show them the shots. My mother was lit up like the Washington Monument at night!

This is a moment I will remember the rest of my life!

Friday, Oct. 29, 2005

Today was the day to find out the price a nation pays for it's history.


A vast sea of white tombstones.
I was in history mode. You see, here you don't get the feeling that people died for all the wrong reasons. Yes I'm aware that many of the men buried here died in Indian wars, robbing a people of their land. Many others died in questionable actions that may have caused terrible suffering. Yet all that is washed over at Arlington. You remember the good fights, the ones that mattered, where the civilian soldiers put in their two cents. The Revolutionary War, where we fought for independence, 1812, where we defended this country from foreign aggression. The Civil War, where we freed a race from slavery, and decided what the nature of our country would be. World War Il, the Korean War, where each time, we saved the free world from totalitarian aggression. I wanted to say to my oldest little niece, "this is your heritage. These people earned you your future." I remembered that line of Tom Hanks's from "Saving Private Ryan" as he lay dying. He said to Matt Damon: "Earn this!"

I was there, at Kennedy's Eternal Flame. I sorted a few things out. Kennedy and Lincoln weren't the only presidents to be assassinated. Arthur, Garfield, McKinley, all met an untimely demise. What made Kennedy and Lincoln different was that they died for their courage, for trying to create a country they, and we all, could believe in. They died with the courage to be themselves in the toughest job in the world. They were . I wonder what people will say a hundred years from now about Dubya. Maybe he'll make it to Arlington on a technicality. The Texas National Guard might pull some strings.

I next went to see the Changing of The Guard at the Tomb of The Unknowns. It is a slow, silent process. The occasion is supposed to be solemn, to make us understand the giving of the last full measure of devotion for your buddies, and your country. Every life given in every one of our wars was a valued life, one that held great promise before it was cut short, and should not have been taken needlessly. Of course, that is a lesson lost on the present management of this country.

Sunday, Oct. 30, 2005:

Today I was a total tourist! After all it was Museum Day, the last full day of our vacation in DC. Our targets were the National Air & Space Museum, and the National Gallery of Art. We walked a few blocks to Foggy Bottom Station and took the Orange Line to L'Enfant Plaza. There we left for the Air and Space Museum Large plains were suspended from the ceiling. Two Mercury capsules were standing at each side of the entrance.

We started by going to the space section. The first thing I saw when I entered the room was a giant V2 rocket. On the other side was one of the Skylabs. In the middle were the Lunar Command Module, and the Soyuz spacecraft that rendezvoused in 1976. I got more than one shot of the entire V2 rocket! We have pictures of the LLM replica. We saw the enormous boosters for the Saturn 5 rocket, the original Wright brothers plane, and the Spirit of Saint Louis.

After that, we went across the Mall to theNational Gallery, old master's building. We stopped in the middle of the Mall to take pictures of the Capitol.

I have a picture of a Van Gogh self-portrait.

I found "Portrait of A Lady," by Jan Van Eyck!

Did I say that I, a Democrat finally saw Dubya?

Well, I saw 3 Hueys flying south past the Washington Monument anyway! They all looked like Marine One! I think the one in middle might’ve been the one.

By the way, you should see the National Gallery’s ornate brass drinking fountains!

Cindy Sheehan

Washington DC

Vietnam Veteran's Memorial

Washington Monument

Lincoln Memorial

The Three Soldiers

Supreme Court

US Capitol

Arlington National Cemetery

National Air and Space Museum

National Gallery of Art