Tuesday edition - January 31, 2006


US Mail: Lisa Casey - PO Box 88 - Ashford, AL 36312




Al-Zawahiri: Bush the 'butcher of Washington'
CNN - 1-31-06
Osama bin Laden's top deputy appears in a videotape aired Monday on an Arabic-language TV station in which he says he survived a recent attempt on his life and ...

Iraqi Authorities Go on Bird-Flu Alert,
Forbes - 1-31-06
By YAHYA BARZANJI , 01.31.2006, 06:07 AM. Health authorities went on high alert Tuesday following Iraq's first reported case of the deadly bird flu virus, culling thousands of birds and warning farmers across the country to inspect their flocks. ...

Senate Vote: Alito Nomination
Washington Post,- 1-31-06
The 58-42 roll call by which the Senate voted to confirm Judge Samuel Alito as the 110th justice on the Supreme Court. ...

The Democrats should stay home and watch Bush lie in the comfort of their homes.

God, George, that al-Zawahiri guy is just murdering your image.-- Grant Gerver


The-World-Is-A-Safer-Place-Without-Saddam News


Will Durst: The George W. Bush 2006 State Of The Union Drinking Game


Hell No We Won’t Go

Officials from six major oil companies have refused to testify this week at a Senate hearing looking into whether oil industry mergers in recent years have made gasoline more expensive at the pump.

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I Hope Review - "Like the best social commentary it slips in under your radar while you're busy appreciating the art." - James McSweeney

Click here

Disturbing News

It's a great day for a root canal. But, if you can't get an appointment, just watch the State of the Union Address. -- Grant Gerver

Lack of Intelligence in Background Search

President Bush’s nominee to head the federal mine safety agency issued an urgent advisory to Pennsylvania's mine operators to update their maps after the Quecreek mine was flooded in 2002 and almost killed nine workers.

The following year, a grand jury determined the state's underground mine safety agency — then led by Bush nominee Richard Stickler — should have identified the mapping…problems sooner.

The backdrop behind the President's podium tonight will be a gigantic poster of Jesus with Terri Schiavo.  -- Grant Gerver

Republican Shenanigans

Republican Gay Slurs Reaches Sweden

Republican Sen. Sam Brownback, a potential presidential candidate, said Monday he meant no offense to homosexuals when he used the word "fruits"in a recent interview with Rolling Stone magazine

Bush/Abramoff Photo Found!

"Earlier today at the White House, President Bush met with an official from Lebanon. He said he's always admired the Lebanese. He said in fact, Dick Cheney's daughter is Lebanese." --Conan O'Brien

Rock-The-Voter News

Wow. Now We Get To Breathe and Drink B.S.

The Bush administration will let thousands of factory-style farms escape severe penalties for fouling the air and water with animal excrement in exchange for data to help curb future pollution.

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Good News

George Bush and the Kittens

George W. Bush and a secret service agent are taking a stroll when they come upon a little girl carrying a basket with a blanket over it.

Curious, Bush asks the girl, "What's in the basket?" She replies, "New baby kittens," and she opens the basket to show him.

"How nice," says Bush. "What kind are they?" The little girl says, "Republicans."

Bush smiles, pats the little girl on the head and continues on.

Three weeks later Bush is taking another stroll, this time with Karl Rove.

They see the little girl again with the same basket. Bush says, "Watch this, Karl; it's really cute."

They approach the little girl. He greets the little girl and says, "How are the kittens doing?" She says, "Fine."

Then, smirking, he nudges Rove with his elbow and asks the little girl, "And can you tell us what kind of kittens they are?" She replies, "Sure. Democrats."

Abashed, Bush says, "But three weeks ago you said that they were Republicans!"

"I know," she says, "but now their eyes are open."

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Looking for Bigfoot BY MIKE PALECEK

Selected by January magazine as its “best of Fiction, 2005”

Click here for LOOKING FOR BIGFOOT by Mike Palecek

The American Dream — psst ... it's not real. Wake up!
Looking for Bigfoot is the story of Jack Robert King, American writer and talk radio personality, who sets off from the family home in Iowa in search of reality, to find the truth buried within the myth about America. Click here for more

Biz-Tech News


Bush Is Betraying Life Everyday  -- Grant Gerver

Dear Lisa,

Thanks for the picture of the Superbowl tickets. As a Seahawks fan living in poverty, (made worse by Bush) that is the closest I will ever get to them.


You're welcome Eileen. I wouldn't feel safe at the Super Bowl with the recent threats from Osama bin Laden and yesterday from Zawahiri.

But I'd go if I had tickets!

The city of Detroit will be handing out free tickets to people who would never have a chance to go to a Super Bowl... like the Detroit Lions.- Jay Leno

All Hat No Cattle Guest Columnist

The 2006 Elections: Let's Give Credit Where It's Due

by Richard Wise

“Let me be as clear as I can be. President Bush believes if Al Qaeda is calling somebody in America, it is in our national security interest to know who they’re calling and why. Some important Democrats clearly disagree.”

Karl Rove, speaking to the Republican
National Committee, 1-20-2006

Maybe it’s only because I am not an “important Democrat,” but I must confess: I can’t disagree with a syllable of what Karl Rove said. Yet with those words Rove fired the opening volley of the 2006 electoral campaign.

Rove made clear that Republicans plan to attack Democrats’ positions on terrorism; a “cut and run” plan for Iraq (even though there is no such plan); our views on wiretapping, tax cuts, and Bush’s attempts to shape the Supreme Court; our opposition to renewal of the USA Patriot Act, and more. And, lest we forget: they are the party of moral values.

Democrats must seize the initiative in this election cycle and avoid being placed on the defensive. We can start by making clear who owns the major issues of the day. But first, let us make just as clear the issues that Bush and the Republicans do not own.

• Bush and the Republicans do not own September 11th. It is presumptuous and dishonest for them to try to use the tragic events of that sad day for their own gain, yet they do it again and again with impunity. Who do they think they are? What do they think we are? September 11th belongs to all of America. September 11th belongs to the ages.

• Bush and the Republicans do not own the war on terror. Extremists and fanatics who threaten our safety and our way of life must be hunted down and stopped, whoever they are and wherever in the world they can be found. If wiretapping is necessary, then let’s wiretap.

• Bush and the Republicans do not own patriotism. The American experiment is still young at 230 years. It is uniquely ours, fueled by workers’ dreams and purchased with patriots’ blood. Robust yet fragile, the American democracy belongs to every citizen. Keeping it intact and vibrant is an honor that falls to each one of us. Let’s remind people that patriotism starts with a reverence for the Constitution and the laws, not with a cheap flag pin in the lapel.

• Bush and the Republicans do not own the troops. They are our sons and daughters, volunteers sent into harm’s way half-a-world from home. They wear proudly the uniforms we once wore. We support the troops all right; that’s why we believe they should be properly equipped, adequately staffed, and deployed toward honorable objectives. What’s more, in light of their own military service, Bush, Cheney, and their ilk do not deserve even to stand in the presence of these brave young men and women.

• Bush and the Republicans do not own moral values. They just talk about morality more piously than we do. In 2006, let’s focus on moral conduct and not on who says he's more righteous than whom. They can try to fool the electorate but they can’t fool the Almighty.

• Bush and the Republicans do not own law-and-order. We all want safe streets and honest boardrooms. We all want criminals locked up, for life if necessary. We may differ on some important details – gun control and the death penalty – but those are differences in means, not differences in ends.

• Bush and the Republicans do not own the schools. We all agree that schools must be safe, effective, and accountable. We may debate the efficacy of NCLB but we stand united on the outcomes we require.

• Bush and the Republican do not own reverence for life before birth. Nobody wants to have an abortion. And all those holier-than-thou “pro-lifers” are really only “pro-choice” after all. They just think the choice should be theirs. Let’s demand that they explain their patronizing, chauvinistic arrogance. Let them explain why the choice should be theirs, not yours.

• Bush and the Republicans do not own Osama bin Laden. WHY NOT? By now, they should. Let's demand answers: “Where is Osama bin Laden? If you don’t know, why not?” Are they waiting for him to phone his friends in the US?

Does the Bush Cabal own nothing in this election cycle? Do they get no credit at all? To the contrary: here are some things that Bush and the Republicans have made uniquely theirs over these past five long years. This year, let’s insist that they receive full credit where credit is due. And let's make that credit stick.

• The War in Iraq. More than 2,300 Americans dead. Flawed intelligence; phantom weapons of mass destruction; squandered money and opportunity; no-bid contracts; an underequipped and overextended army; a growing insurgency. Bush and the Republicans own the whole malodorous mess. Explain that, George. Tell us all how “Shock and Awe” so quickly became merely shocking and awful.

• Bungling the war on terror. From the ill-conceived Department of Homeland Security to the illegal NSA domestic eavesdropping; from the USA Patriot Act to Guantanamo and Abu Ghraib, Bush and the Republicans have bungled them all. Tell us why, George. Tell us once more about “Mission Accomplished!”

• The pathetic response to Hurricane Katrina. “Give me your tired, your poor,” wrote Emma Lazarus for the Statue of Liberty. But when America’s tired, our poor needed federal help on the Gulf Coast, Bush and the Republicans let them drown in their attics. We will never forget September 11th, and we must never let Bush and the Republicans forget Hurricane Katrina. Explain that, George. Explain it to the survivors and to the homeless.

• The economy. Bush and the Republicans inherited a $350 billion surplus in 2001 and turned it into a $450 billion deficit within five years – an $800 billion difference. Explain that, George. Explain it to the young people who will one day have to pay off your debts.

Companies like Halliburton have had a great ride since 2001. The broader market has not. If you invested $100 in a Dow Jones Index Fund on Inauguration Day 2001, you would now have $101.24 after dividends and splits. Explain that, George. Explain it to the millions of us trying to plan now for retirement.

And, in the Orwellian world they have created, where eavesdropping is freedom and torture is patriotism, we have to ask the Republicans about unemployment. It’s 17% higher than five years ago and that’s good. Explain that, George. Explain it in plain language to the people without jobs.

• They own their failed pocketbook initiatives. Today seven million more Americans have no health insurance compared to five years ago. Gasoline and heating oil prices are up 60%. Many citizens of the richest country in human history now have to choose: heat, medicine, or food. And for those Americans forced into bankruptcy, there is no relief from credit card debt. Is this all supposed to be good, or is it not supposed to matter? Explain that, George. Explain it to the disenfranchised among us.

Bush and the Republicans wanted to partially privatize Social Security. What would you have us invest in, George, that Dow Jones Index Fund? And what do you have to say about the inept introduction of Medicare Part D? How many states had to take back their programs? What was the cost to their state coffers? Explain that, George. Explain it to the seniors who could not get their medicine.

• They own their alignment with the religious right. Or rather, the religious right owns them. From Dr. Frist’s tele-diagnosis of Terry Schiavo to the “science” of Intelligent Design, Bush and the religious right have shown us the triumph of ideology over evidence. Explain that, George. Explain the far-right’s unerring tendency to see the world not as it really is, but as you wish it were.

• They own the company they keep. From Michael Brown to Harriet Miers, John Bolton, and all the other recess appointees; from Jack Abramoff to Scooter Libby, Tom DeLay, Bob Ney, Duke Cunningham, and possibly Karl Rove himself, Bush and the Republicans have defined themselves by the company they keep. Explain that, George. Tell us why you are not one of them; then tell us why we should believe you.

• They own America’s image abroad and at home. Bush and the Republicans have tarnished America’s image abroad and caused the deepest divisions at home since Vietnam. How dare they do that to this great nation? How dare they do that to us? Bush and the Republicans have succeeded where terrorists failed: they have divided, not united, us. Explain that, George. Explain it if you dare.

After six years in office, Bush and the Republicans can no longer talk about how pious they are, what great plans they have, how insidious the enemy is, what wusses the liberals are, or the way things ought to be. Nothing is left in 2006 to blame on Bill Clinton. After six years they have to run on their own conduct and their own accomplishments. In 2006, we must force them to do exactly that.

So let’s seize the initiative this election cycle and see to it that Bush and the Republicans get all the credit they have coming. And if they have defecated in their hats from time to time, that’s too bad. Let them now put those hats on.

Rick Wise is a consultant in New England. He was a US Navy Hospital Corpsman, 1971 - 75.

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US Mail: Lisa Casey - PO Box 88 - Ashford, AL 36312

Odd News

A photograph provided by Scotland Yard shows a sculpture entitled 'The Watchers' in the grounds of Roehampton University in southwest London. The sculpture, valued at £600,000 (875,500 euros) was stolen, the most recent in a series of around twenty similar thefts in and around London. Police fear that valuable pieces worth millions of pounds could be stolen to be melted down and used for scrap metal. Photo by Scotland Yard