Wednesday edition - May 17, 2006


DHS Does About-Face In Backing Use of National Guard to Seal Border
By Patrick Yoest, Congressional Quarterly Staff - 5-15-06
In December of 2005, Fox News talking head Bill O’Reilly floated an unlikely — even brash — idea to the Homeland Security secretary to seal off the porous southwest border.

“Why don’t you put the National Guard on the border to back up the border patrol and stop the bleeding, and then start to increase the Border Patrol, the high-tech and all of that?” O’Reilly asked...“Well, the National Guard is really, first of all, not trained for that mission,” Chertoff told O’Reilly.

IRAQ: Families still await reparations for wartime property losses
Reuters AlertNet, UK - 5-17-06
BAGHDAD, 16 May (IRIN) - The issue of compensation for those who have lost property or land since the 2003 US-led invasion of the country will be a top priority for the new government, said officials.

Bush reverses stand on spy program oversight
Reuters - 5-17-06
The White House, in an abrupt reversal, has agreed to let the full Senate and House of Representatives intelligence committees review President George W. Bush's domestic spying program, lawmakers said on Tuesday.


I miss the old secretary of Homeland Security, Tom Ridge -- at least he gave us a sense of safety in the form of color coded terror alerts and duct tape.



George Bush has to stop laughing at himself. When you're incompetence literally costs lives, giggling at it isn't cute or funny... And he wants everyone to know that he doesn't take himself too seriously. Which is working out great, because now nobody else in the world does either. -- Bill Maher




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

"Last night was the season finale of 'West Wing.' 'West Wing' is gone. And ABC has cancelled 'Commander In Chief.' So, now the only fictional president is Bush." --David Letterman



Bush Diplomacy Marches On


The Bush administration said Tuesday it had broken off negotiations on a free trade agreement with Ecuador following the South American government's decision to annul an operating contract with Occidental Petroleum Corp.




Disturbing News


Unsecuring Jobs


Cuts in funding and staff at the federal Equal Employment Opportunity Commission are threatening job security for millions of Americans, a federal workers' union claims in a new ad campaign.






I'm just practicing: "Goodbye, Karl. Don't worry, there are plenty of jobs for architects in the prison system." -- Grant Gerver


Republican Shenanigans



"On Thursday, the president will follow up his speech by going to the Arizona border, which is historic. It will be the first time he's actually ever shown up with a National Guard unit." --Jay Leno




It's OK When Republicans Do It


Just two weeks after the House passed a reform bill requiring lawmakers to attach their names to pet projects, GOP leaders are advancing spending bills containing billions of dollars in such parochial "earmarks" whose sponsors remain anonymous.




Rock-The-Voter News



Troops Destroy Baghdad Dental Clinic




Biz-Tech News



Trolling - The T Word


...last Thursday the country experienced an uncomfortable moment when the President of the United States reassured us that the government was not "trolling through the personal lives of millions of innocent Americans." Apparently W's speech writing staff doesn't know that trolling is slang for an older gay man cruising for anonymous sex with younger men....



"All these conspiracy theories have the two basic problems: one, they believe the government is competent. And two, they believe the government can keep a secret." – Richard Clarke




Bush-Prison-Torture News


So, Mr. President, don't laugh at yourself, because breaking the law is not cute. Having Americans torture people isn't adorable. Leaving poor people to drown wasn't enchanting. And WMD's wasn't a shaggy dog story. So, I'll make a deal with you. We won't impeach you if you just stay on your estate — I mean "ranch" — and fish on your man-made lake. For perch. Maybe you'll beat your own record. -- Bill Maher




Tony Snow Debut - Uses the T Word - Tarbaby


Snow said, "I don't want to hug the tarbaby of trying to comment on the program, the alleged program, the existence of which I can neither confirm nor deny."

The expression, which refers to a character in the most famous of the fictional Uncle Remus stories, is sometimes used to portray an inextricable situation. But, as the word also has been used as a derogatory term for blacks, it raised eyebrows when spoken from the White House podium.

Later in the briefing, Snow was asked what he meant.
"Well, I believe 'hug the tarbaby,' we could trace that back to American lore," he said.


I Googled "hug the tar baby" and got one result. Here's an interesting definition of tar baby


Go-F*ck-Yourself News


Airplane black boxes must now be made out of Keith Richards. The man, who has taken more drugs than Whitney Houston, Rush Limbaugh and Robert Downey, Jr., combined, recently fell out of a tree, and then crashed a jet ski. And yet, somehow, that cigarette never fell out of his mouth. What is this guy still running on? I've got to know. Because I'm beginning to think the future of medicine isn't injecting stem cells, it's injecting heroin. -- Bill Maher



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Odd News




Australian spin bowler Shane Warne undergoes laser hair treatment at the Advanced Hair Studio in London, to halt his hair loss, in 2005. A hair-loss treatment advertisement featuring Warne was found in breach of British advertising industry rules. Photo by Advanced Hair Studio


Hair peace.