TBogg - "...a somewhat popular blogger"

Faithful husband, soccer dad, basset owner, and former cowboy
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  • Thursday, May 31, 2007


    Mourning becomes Margaret Ellen Noonan
    Peggy's ice cubes keep soaking up her gin

    Once upon a time it was closing time and Peggy found herself in love:
    The American president has, meanwhile, demonstrated to the entire world that he is neither a bombastic naïf nor a reckless cowboy but, in fact, another kind of American stereotype: the steely-eyed rocket man. Don't tread on him. It is good for the world that it see him as he is. As for leadership style, remember Jimmy Carter micromanaging the failed hostage rescue mission in 1980? This president was told Wednesday night we may have to move early to take advantage of potentially key targets that had presented themselves. Bush said, "Let's go." It takes guts and judgment to trust others who know how to do their jobs.

    The American victory will mean that the United States has removed a great and serious threat to the innocent people of the world. An evil man who was gathering to himself weapons of mass destruction was, is, a danger to the world. And so, with the successful prosecution of the war, the world will be safer.

    We will have helped the Mideast become more stable. There were those who warned that invading Iraq would lead to instability in the Mideast, to which the only response was: lead to? The Mideast was instable. Saddam was part of that instability. His removal opens up the possibility of stability.

    With Iraq taken care of the United States will be able to move with enhanced strength toward an Arab-Israeli peace that might last. There are those who say Mr. Bush cannot move forcefully here because his base is composed in part of Christian Evangelicals deeply enamored of Israel. And so it is. But with victory in Baghdad Mr. Bush's base widens, and it will damage him not at all either in the world or domestically to come out strong and do what needs to be done.

    And, finally, victory in Iraq means this: every terror state and terror group is more than ever on notice and newly aware that the West does not exist to play victim.

    A victory in Iraq is about to enhance America's stature in the world. America deserves it. Because of all the powerful countries in the world, it is the most trustworthy, reliable and constructive.

    Soon this war will be over. It was hard getting there, hard doing it and there will no doubt be hard going. But it will be over, and we won't come back from hell with empty hands. We will have won a great deal. In the next week and weeks it will be good to keep that in mind, and keep our eyes on the prize.
    But dawn comes, as it must, and Peggy rolls over and realizes that it's coyote ugly time:
    The beginning of my own sense of separation from the Bush administration came in January 2005, when the president declared that it is now the policy of the United States to eradicate tyranny in the world, and that the survival of American liberty is dependent on the liberty of every other nation. This was at once so utopian and so aggressive that it shocked me. For others the beginning of distance might have been Katrina and the incompetence it revealed, or the depth of the mishandling and misjudgments of Iraq.

    What I came in time to believe is that the great shortcoming of this White House, the great thing it is missing, is simple wisdom. Just wisdom--a sense that they did not invent history, that this moment is not all there is, that man has lived a long time and there are things that are true of him, that maturity is not the same thing as cowardice, that personal loyalty is not a good enough reason to put anyone in charge of anything, that the way it works in politics is a friend becomes a loyalist becomes a hack, and actually at this point in history we don't need hacks.


    Bush the younger came forward, presented himself as a conservative, garnered all the frustrated hopes of his party, turned them into victory, and not nine months later was handed a historical trauma that left his country rallied around him, lifting him, and his party bonded to him. He was disciplined and often daring, but in time he sundered the party that rallied to him, and broke his coalition into pieces. He threw away his inheritance. I do not understand such squandering.

    Now conservatives and Republicans are going to have to win back their party. They are going to have to break from those who have already broken from them. This will require courage, serious thinking and an ability to do what psychologists used to call letting go. This will be painful, but it's time. It's more than time.
    Then there was a great gnashing of teeth and a rending of flesh.

    And we came to call her Lefty...

    posted by tbogg at 9:49 PM



    Things I wish I had written

    From Wonkette:
    The RNC phone solicitors depend on a nationwide army of xenophobic old people, just like casinos.
    That is really really good.

    posted by tbogg at 9:27 PM



    Pre-Friday Random TenBoth hands on your hips for your man
    Me and the boys is your biggest fans
    Every time we see you we be like DAAAAAAAMN!
    Work it girl
    Move somethin, hurt me girl - oh!

    Under The Milky Way - The Church
    Doginabag - The Fratellis
    Me, I'm Not - Nine Inch Nails
    Purple Haze - Groove Armada
    Just One Fix - Ministry
    First Down - Fatboy Slim
    New York City - They Might be Giants
    Avenue - St. Etienne
    Move Somethin' - LL Cool JJ (I have no idea ... your guess is as good as mine)
    Darklands - The Jesus and Mary Chain
    Bonus number mumble mumble mumble: Crucify- Tori Amos

    posted by tbogg at 8:46 PM



    Thursday Night Basset Blogging

    Tongues, glowers, and nibblies edition

    Labels: ,

    posted by tbogg at 7:53 PM



    Adventures in primatology

    Someone is getting a little pissy since things aren't going his way.

    Since he is already past denial, we can now expect bargaining and depression, followed by the excessive consumption of alcohol. Honestly. How long before he climbs back into the bottle?

    posted by tbogg at 9:12 AM


    Wednesday, May 30, 2007


    Welcome to the occupation
    A shiny fortress on the hill

    Yes, there is nothing that the people of the Middle East love more than an occupying army defending them from...well, who cares what the wogs want.
    President George W. Bush would like to see a lengthy U.S. troop presence in Iraq like the one in South Korea to provide stability but not in a frontline combat role, the White House said on Wednesday.

    The United States has had thousands of U.S. troops in South Korea to guard against a North Korean invasion for 50 years.

    Democrats in control of the U.S. Congress have been pressing Bush to agree to a timetable for pulling troops from Iraq, an idea firmly opposed by the president.

    White House spokesman Tony Snow said Bush would like to see a U.S. role in Iraq ultimately similar to that in South Korea.

    "The Korean model is one in which the United States provides a security presence, but you've had the development of a successful democracy in South Korea over a period of years, and, therefore, the United States is there as a force of stability," Snow told reporters.
    So basically we've invited ourselves into their home, destroyed all the furniture, smashed the windows, pissed on the rug, murdered the children in their beds, raped the dog... and now we're deciding which color we want to paint the bedroom that we picked out for ourselves. Who thinks this is a good idea? The usual dumbshits:
    Did anyone think an ongoing troop presence, Mideast bases somewhere other than Saudi Arabia, were not part of the scenario? Sectarian violence, largely a development of the past year and a half, being aggressively engaged with positive signs, but will require an ongoing presence for the foreseeable future. Iranian meddling and attempts at regional domination, predictable, in fact a big part of the reason why we always needed an ongoing presence.
    Josh Marshall points out:

    Let's run through a few differences. First, Korea is an ethnically and culturally homogenous state. Iraq, not a culturally or ethnically homogenous state. And needless to say, that has been a point of some real difficulty. Second, Korea a democracy? Well, yes, for about fifteen years. Without going into all the details, South Korea was a military dictatorship for most of the Cold War.

    A deeper acquaintance with the last half century of Korean history would suggest that a) a fifty year occupation, b) lack of democracy and c) a hostile neighbor were deeply intertwined. Remove B or C and you probably don't have A, certainly no A if you lose both B and C.

    The more telling dissimilarity is the distinction between frontline troops and troops for stability. At least notionally (and largely this was true) US troops have been in South Korea to ward off an invasion from the North. US troops aren't in Iraq to ward off any invasion. Invasion from who? Saudi Arabia? Syria?

    No, US troops are in Iraq for domestic security, in so many words, to protect it from itself, or to ensure the continued existence of an elected, pro-US government. That tells you that the US military presence in Iraq will never be as relatively bloodless as the US military presence in Korea since it has no external threat it's counterbalancing against. In a sense that the US deployment in Korea has never quite been, it is a sustained foreign military occupation.
    To which Crittenden replies:
    Newshoggers, channeling TPM: Iraq and Korea are different!

    OK, so what’s your point? Everywhere’s different.
    Oh. Nevermind the details, here comes the bollocks.

    It's a wonder his head doesn't collapse in a stiff breeze.

    posted by tbogg at 6:36 PM



    Spy vs. Spy

    Mall cop Floppy Curt:
    So basically what constitutes a "covert" agent within the CIA is that they travel overseas sometimes using an alias, sometimes using their true name.


    Just wow.

    I mean a foreign country would never keep tabs on the real names of agents would they? But hey, she was "covert".
    Agent William F. Buckley:

    In 1951, Buckley was recruited into the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), yet served for less than a year. Little has been published regarding Buckley's work with the CIA, but in a 2001 letter to author W. Thomas Smith, Jr., Buckley wrote, “I did training in Washington as a secret agent and was sent to Mexico City. There I served under the direct supervision of Howard Hunt, about whom of course a great deal is known.”

    In a November 1, 2005, editorial for the National Review, he recounted that:

    When in 1951 I was inducted into the CIA as a deep cover agent, the procedures for disguising my affiliation and my work were unsmilingly comprehensive. It was three months before I was formally permitted to inform my wife what the real reason was for going to Mexico City to live. If, a year later, I had been apprehended, dosed with sodium pentothal, and forced to give out the names of everyone I knew in the CIA, I could have come up with exactly one name, that of my immediate boss (E. Howard Hunt, as it happened). In the passage of time one can indulge in idle talk on spook life. In 1980 I found myself seated next to the former president of Mexico at a ski-area restaurant. What, he asked amiably, had I done when I lived in Mexico? "I tried to undermine your regime, Mr. President." He thought this amusing, and that is all that it was, under the aspect of the heavens.

    While in Mexico, Buckley edited The Road to Yenan, a book addressing the communist quest for global domination, by Peruvian author Eudocio Ravines.

    In 1951, the same year he was recruited into the CIA, Buckley's first book, God and Man at Yale, was published.

    posted by tbogg at 8:08 AM


    Tuesday, May 29, 2007


    Blame it on the bitchez

    It was bad enough that the rape allegations ruined Duke's lacrosse season last year, but now that Powerline Paul has discovered the sport, he finds even more women who are are keeping the men down:

    As the Post also notes, however, the game is not expanding at the college level. Despite high school talent that is probably at least twice as deep as it was 10 or 20 years ago, the number of college men's lacrosse program has remained basically the same.

    The Post doesn't explore the reasons for this, but Title IX must be the main culprit. That's the law which, as interpreted, basically requires colleges to to enroll as many women in intercollegiate athletics as men regardless of comparative interest. It causes colleges to eliminate programs in which many students would like to participate, for example men's wrestling and tennis, in favor women's programs (say, a bowling team) for which interest is minimal and must be ginned up.

    In this environment, it's no wonder that colleges aren't starting men's lacrosse programs, which require (as I understand it) at least three dozen players. Doing so seems like a sure-fire way to encounter Title IX compliance issues.
    Or, if one were limber of mind, one might suggest getting around those Title IX compliance issues by, say, starting up a women's lacrosse team also. In San Diego seven high school boys and six high school girls have made official announcements that they will be playing at the collegiate level next year. Imagine that...

    If you want to look for the real culprit, look no farther than football:

    You can trace the demise of football at Long Beach State to a concrete wall in Berlin, Germany. It divided a city and political ideologies, and it came crashing down in November 1989.

    With it came an end to the Cold War and the lucrative defense contracts that fueled it. Many of those contracts were in California, and as they dried up so did the state's once-robust tax base -- to the tune of $4 billion. That shortfall trickled down to the Cal State University system and, ultimately, to its respective athletic departments.

    At Long Beach State, athletic director Dave O'Brien was told to trim close to $1 million from his budget in 1992. He figured he had two choices:

    1. Make across-the-board cuts from every sport -- salaries, equipment, recruiting, operations -- and decimate the entire department.

    2. Cut one sport and leave the rest of the department alone.

    Bye-bye, football.

    The football budget was $1.3 million, and what little revenue it generated came from road-game guarantees against (far) superior opponents. Unlike a school such as San Diego State, Long Beach at the time also was competing for the Southern California sports dollar against two major colleges, two NFL teams, two NBA teams, two pro baseball teams and an NHL team.

    And attendance was well below five figures. In Long Beach's final season, the 49ers averaged 3,893 per game.


    A half-hour away, Cal State Fullerton was facing $750,000 in cuts in its athletic department, or 15 percent of its $4.9 million budget. The football program, which cost $1.2 million, survived the 1992 season -- when just 2,113 showed up for the final home game -- but no further.

    "I had to ask myself if we belonged in this arena, and the answer was no," said Bill Shumard, who was the AD at Fullerton at the time and now holds the same position at Long Beach State. "Playing football was bringing down the reputation of the entire athletic program. It tore down the image of other sports, and I had coaches tell me that our football program affected their recruiting and fund-raising efforts in a negative way.

    "It was unfair to everyone involved. We were spending $1.2 million a year and going 2-9 ... We just weren't set up to be competitive in football."

    Long Beach and Fullerton were not alone. They joined a growing list of universities, public and private, in California and elsewhere, that would drop football in the '90s. Santa Clara discontinued the sport after the 1992 season as well; Pacific did it after 1995.


    Yet the question remains. Did Long Beach, Fullerton and the rest take a defeatist attitude simply because they lost a couple football games 55-0, potentially denying them millions of dollars if their fortunes turned?

    Or were they something else? Were they visionaries? Long Beach, Fullerton, Pacific, Santa Clara. They all dropped football in the 1990s. They all say something else, though: It was the best thing they ever did. Flourished, is a word you hear often from them. "Looking back, it didn't make sense to keep football," says Carroll Williams, then athletic director at Santa Clara. "I argued at first, but the president made the correct decision. The bottom line is, we strengthened our entire program. "We said, 'Let's be as good as we can be in the other sports. Let's compete at a championship level in all the sports our conference sponsors.' We've been able to do that in most cases." Exhibit A: soccer. Both men's and women's teams at Santa Clara went to the NCAA Final Four last year. Or take Long Beach. After dropping football, O'Brien targeted six sports to compete at a national level: men's and women's basketball, men's and women's volleyball, baseball and softball. Since then, the 49ers have a .645 winning average in those sports, including two national championships, 20 conference titles and 30 NCAA postseason appearances. In the same sports over the same period, San Diego State has a .499 winning average, no national championships, five conference titles and eight NCAA appearances. Says Long Beach State's Shumard: "What I learned from the Fullerton situation is this: If you're going to field a football team at a (Cal State University) you better be successful. If your team continues to lose, it will have a ripple effect over your entire athletic department."

    Or take Pacific. This year it finished 71st out of 260 Division I schools in the Sears Directors' Cup standings, which rank athletic departments based on the performance of their teams. That was the highest by anybody in the country that doesn't play football, and ahead of Utah, Kansas, Mississippi State, Syracuse and SDSU (94th). Or take Fullerton. Since dropping football, the Titans renewed a focus on their baseball program and have become regulars at the College World Series. They won it all in 1995; this year, they were the No. 1 seed in the eight-team tournament and finished third. "I didn't want to drop football," says Milton Gordon, president of Cal State Fullerton. "But two years after dropping it, we won the national championship in baseball. Within a year or two, we had an athletic department budget in the black. It has never been in the red since."

    The size of their budgets decreased, but so did the constant need to sacrifice millions of dollars at the football altar in a futile effort to remain competitive. Long Beach, Fullerton, Santa Clara and Pacific all have athletic budgets in the $7 million range, or one-fourth of the average budget of a BCS school. Their athletic departments also receive between $2 million and $3 million a year from the school's general fund. SDSU gets $6.4 million. Many athletic directors say if they dropped football, the entire department would suffer. That there would be significant scholarship reductions on the women's side. That there would be massive cuts to the overall budget without the department's major source of revenue and magnet for fund raising. "What they've lost is their ties to their alums," says San Jose State athletic director Chuck Bell, whose school continues to play Div. I-A football amid a serious budget crisis. "Their alums have no interest because there's no national media coverage or local media for anything but football and men's basketball. "That's what the public wants to read. It's about football and basketball. They can win a national championship in those other sports but you and I -- without some investigative work -- can't remember what those championships were. I think that's too bad for the kids' sake, but that's reality."

    The Long Beach and Fullertons of the world respectfully disagree. "When we dropped football, it was perceived as a step backward," O'Brien has said. "Instead, it was a liberating move forward." Long Beach, Fullerton, Santa Clara and Pacific indeed have grown their athletic departments in the past five years, all the while becoming more competitive. In some sports, they have become contenders for national championships on an annual basis -- Long Beach and Pacific in women's volleyball, Fullerton in baseball, Santa Clara in soccer. Students at Long Beach recently passed a referendum for a fee increase to help the athletic department reach full scholarship levels in all 18 sports. That would give Long Beach 142 scholarships (SDSU offers 158 not counting the 85 for football) and means the days of targeting specific sports for success are over. "It's how we define ourselves now -- the best major college athletic program in America that doesn't play football," says Shumard, whose 49ers have finished as high as 43rd in the Sears Directors' Cup standings. "If you find the correct niche within your marketplace, you can become that. "We have."
    San Diego State still hasn't found their niche.

    In early 1998, then-San Diego State Athletic Director Rick Bay spoke with a sense of urgency about the athletic department needing to support itself.

    “We could be on the brink of something great,” Bay said, “but if it happens, it must happen over the next two or three years, because it will be difficult for the faculty to provide money for athletics. This is a very lean, very modest operation, but we've had to ask for an augmentation of $2.5 million, and that's money a lot of people in the university would like to have for their programs.”

    Nine years later, the goal remains elusive. While the current fiscal year doesn't close until June 30, the athletic department again will receive about $2.8 million in “one-time” or “auxiliary” funding from other university sources to balance its budget of about $27 million.

    The infusion is necessary despite a $160 annual student fee increase implemented in 2004 by SDSU President Stephen Weber, overriding a student referendum. That has added $4.8 million to $7 million to the athletic department coffers annually. An additional $5 million in athletics revenue comes from the state general fund.


    “One-time funding is a joke if it's been going on for the last 20 years, every year, no?” asked Leon Rosenstein, an SDSU emeritus professor of philosophy. “If forced to think about it, you will find – though they will rarely allow you to quote them by name – that most faculty agree; and, finally, no, no one bails out academics. Football is sacred.”

    Rosenstein added:

    “The (SDSU) president should be censured by the Senate and (Associated Students) for his ridiculous persistence – in spite of all evidence to the contrary – that somehow, at some time, in some way, if we only 'stay the course,' football will be a big money-maker.”
    This all sounds so familiar...

    (Added) To clarify something for comments: the Power Line post was written by Paul Mirengoff who is the one who writes about sports. Scott Johnson covers the music scene, while John Hinderaker is on the beauty pageant beat.

    posted by tbogg at 11:30 PM



    Dead Enders
    Kevin Drum makes a wish in light of the fact that Valerie Plame was covert:
    So that settles that. I hope the wingosphere can finally stop bleating about how she wasn't "really" covert and there was no harm in what Libby et. al. did.
    Fat chance.

    Special Ed:
    They were? Plame drove into the office in Langley. She traveled abroad under her own name. She helped arrange for her husband to do some fact-checking on a sensitive intelligence matter. Her husband, former Ambassador Joe Wilson, then came home and leaked his observations to two nationally-known journalists, and then wrote his own op-ed in the New York Times under his byline.

    And her husband managed to list her in Who's Who, where any journalist could look up the entry -- and where Robert Novak did just that.
    Because all ambassadors are married to spies (and their mates have cool spy names like Ivanna Humpalot), and besides, right after her name in Who's Who it said "super secret agent...sssshhhhh...no telling". You can look it up.

    Meanwhile legal eagle Dan Mini-Godlstein comes up with this gem:
    Much mud is being tossed at Victoria Toensing, predictably, as a result of the document, without considering that Toensing was describing Plame’s status as a matter of law and with reference to the intended effect of the legislation regarding the unauthorized revelation of an agent’s covert status. Certainly, what was NOT intended is that such a status ought to provide a legal shield for agents who knowingly undertake a disinformation campaign aimed at discrediting an administration that prevents the administration from attempting to set the record straight.
    And so instead of confronting Joseph Wilson's accusations head-on or disciplining Valerie Plame, the only proper legal recourse (as codified by some imaginary law listed somewhere in some crayon-annotated book in the Howdy Doody Memorial legal wing of Dan's mind) is to leak information about her to anyone who will listen.

    Thank goodness for our Calvinball system of justice...

    posted by tbogg at 10:48 PM


    Monday, May 28, 2007


    Now you will not swell the rout
    Of lads that wore their honours out,
    Runners whom renown outran
    And the name died before the man. - A.E. Housman

    For many of us Memorial Day is both a time of reflection and a time of sorrow as we honor those who died far too young keeping this great American experiment of ours flourishing.

    For John Hinderaker, on the other hand, it's Miss Universe Day:
    Miss Universe Pulls an Upset

    One thing I've noticed is that beauty pageants tend to follow form. I'm not sure how bettors are able to predict judges' choices, but they generally do so pretty accurately. But not in this year's Miss Universe competition.

    I had thought about live-blogging the event, but dinner got delayed and I caught it on the fly, semi-DVR'ed. It was an entertaining show. For better or worse, Miss Universe doesn't have a talent competition, so it goes pretty fast.

    For the most part, the final fifteen contestants were the betting favorites. The evening's only major mishap occurred when Miss USA, who I always thought was questionable as a favorite, slipped and fell down during the evening gown segment.
    In honor of both Memorial Day and the Miss Universe Pageant, Mr. Hinderaker Esq. then pulled his own " upset" and, seconds later, 50 million sperm gave their lives for "Oh God!" and country.
    Smart lad, to slip betimes away
    From fields were glory does not stay
    And early though the laurel grows
    It withers quicker than the rose.
    Next time, try thinking about baseball....

    Update: Jules Crittenden, unclear on the concept. As usual.

    posted by tbogg at 8:32 PM


    Sunday, May 27, 2007


    Memorial Day

    I wasn't sure what to put up for Memorial Day, so here is Ana Vidović performing Cavatina from The Deer Hunter.

    The Deer Hunter:
    It must also be said that the funeral is one of the most quietly devastating scenes ever seen in a film about war, largely because it avoids grandstanding. There are no hateful words thrown at the "enemy," nor are there syrupy speeches. Instead, the people involved act as most of us would. They are quiet, shy, and make small talk to avoid the real matter at hand. And when a lone voice begins to sing "God Bless America," it is not a jingoistic, self-righteous anthem, but rather the only way these people know how to convey their emotions at that moment. When in doubt, it seems to say, rely on the familiar. Once again, ritual. The subtle power of this scene does much to contradict the popular notion that the film ends on a note of God and Country. These aren't muscular Christians barking their war cry, but rather confused, saddened friends trying best to remember a lost member of their inner circle.

    posted by tbogg at 11:14 PM



    Acceptable losses
    You have to kill two little terrorists to get full credit

    According to the Terrorist Death Watch, we're winning! Since January '06 we have killed 1,821 terrorists in Iraq at a cost of, let me see...hmmmm... carry the two... 1273 American soldiers.

    If you're wondering how we know that all of the terrorists we killed really were terrorists, well it's pretty obvious: we wouldn't have killed them if they weren't.

    And shame on you for even wondering.

    America hater.

    posted by tbogg at 12:24 PM



    The Torquemada of Boalt Hall

    From the Michael Isikoff and Evan Thomas Newsweek story on the Justice Department:
    The trouble began shortly after 9/11, when the administration began looking for tough measures to head off another terrorist attack. The Justice Department has a relatively obscure department known as the Office of Legal Counsel. Typically staffed by brilliant young lawyers, the OLC opines on the legality and constitutionality of administration policies. One of the stars of OLC was a cocky young lawyer named John Yoo. After 9/11, Yoo began writing opinions giving the administration exceptional latitude to fight terrorism. Yoo's memos were used to justify both the secret eavesdropping program, which for the first time allowed the government to listen in on American citizens without obtaining a court warrant, and aggressive interrogation methods, like water boarding.

    While easygoing and congenial on the surface, Yoo was a fierce bureaucratic infighter with a penchant for circumventing his superiors. Though all the top officials at Justice were conservative Republicans, Yoo seemed to regard them as political dolts. "He had this calm, unruffled, almost 'devil may care' attitude when he talked about issues that were extraordinarily sensitive," recalled a former Justice Department official. "He would sort of come flying by your office and say things like, 'We've done a little analysis, it's no big deal'." Only later, the official said, would he discover that Yoo had sent the White House an opinion authorizing some sweeping new—and constitutionally dubious—program.

    Yoo was increasingly seen as a rogue operator inside the Justice Department. Officials were suspicious of his ties to David Addington, counsel to Vice President Cheney. The vice president's office took a hard-line view that the executive branch should not be trammeled in the war on terror by legislators and bureaucrats. Yoo was "out of control," recalled a former Ashcroft aide. Almost without exception, this conflict stayed behind closed doors. (Yoo declined to respond on the record, but he has told others that Ashcroft was fully briefed by him and approved his memos, and that his critics are now engaged in creative "Monday-morning quarterbacking.")

    The bad feelings seemed to come to a head in 2003, when there was a vacancy to head OLC. At the White House, Gonzales wanted Yoo, and was so insistent that he took the matter to Bush. According to the former Ashcroft aide who did not want to openly discuss matters involving the president, Bush was surprised to learn that Ashcroft opposed Yoo as a renegade. A compromise was reached: a conservative lawyer named Jack Goldsmith was put in charge of OLC.

    But the fight was really just beginning. Carefully reviewing Yoo's carte blanche memos, Goldsmith became convinced that the Justice Department had been signing off on memos approving initiatives, like wiretapping and water boarding, that were not legally supportable. Goldsmith took the matter to Ashcroft's deputy, Comey, and to Patrick Philbin, Comey's No. 2. Philbin's sterling conservative legal résumé tracked Yoo's—they had both clerked for Justice Clarence Thomas at the U.S. Supreme Court. But Philbin and Goldsmith were adamant. The Justice Department could no longer sign off on the wiretapping program, which had been expanded to wiretap more U.S. residents. "This was not ideological," recalled a former Ashcroft aide. "This was about the difference between pushing the limits to the edge of the line and crossing the line."
    On in America could the fucking stupidest guy on the face of the earth land a job at Georgetown and a man too evil for John Ashcroft ends up at Berkeley.

    By the way, you can pick up Yoo's justifications on the cheap.

    posted by tbogg at 11:33 AM



    Joke Line

    I usually stay out of Joe Klein's posts over at Swampland, but this regarding the Mess in Potamia....
    Truly a problem from hell, caused--fecklessly, thoughtlessly, entirely--by George W. Bush. Happy Memorial Day, Mr. President.

    From the lovely Ms. Huffington:
    But here is Klein on Meet the Press in February 2003: "This is a really tough decision. War may well be the right decision at this point. In fact, I think it--it's--it-it probably is." When Tim Russert presses Klein on why he thinks Iraq is "the right war," Klein responds, "Because sooner or later, this guy has to be taken out. Saddam has -- Saddam Hussein has to be taken out... The message has to be sent because if it isn't sent now, if we don't do this now, it empowers every would-be Saddam out there and every would-be terrorist out there."

    Does that sound like someone opposing the war?
    Happy Memorial Day, Mr. Klein.

    posted by tbogg at 10:23 AM


    Saturday, May 26, 2007


    What Hollywood didn't want you to see

    Thirty years ago an early cut of Star Wars could have changed the world as we now know it and, had it been left intact, we would now have lots of legal recreational drugs and a Libertarian President:

    Thirty years ago today, Biggs Darklighter articulated perhaps the most uncompromisingly libertarian critique a government has faced on film.

    At this point, some of our less-nerdy readers are wondering who the heck Biggs Darklighter is. A minor character in Star Wars, which first hit theaters on May 25, 1977, Biggs, played by Garrick Hagon, is better known as Red Three, a pilot who perishes during the assault on the Death Star.

    Luke Skywalker's closest friend from his home planet of Tatooine, Biggs makes his eloquently anti-statist critique of the Galactic Empire in a scene that only appeared in a handful of prints that were released to some drive-in theaters. The so-called Anchorhead sequence, named for the town where Luke goes to hang out with his friends, was deleted from the film to improve the flow of the story. Rather than detour into Luke's social life, the final cut follows the droids C-3PO and R2-D2. The droids' path serves to efficiently introduce each of the main characters: They start on the spaceship where we meet Princess Leia and Darth Vader, then escape to the desert planet, where they run into Luke, then Obi-Wan Kenobi, and later Han Solo. But while the deletion of the Anchorhead sequence makes for a better film, it unfortunately means that an important part of Star Wars' political content was left on the cutting room floor.
    Why, tell me more Nerd-Man!
    Biggs, who has been trained as a pilot at an Imperial Academy, confides in Luke about his plan to desert. "I made some friends at the Academy," says Biggs, his voice dropping to a whisper. "When our frigate goes to one of the central systems, we're going to jump ship and join the Alliance." The Rebellion, Biggs says, is "the side I believe in."

    Luke is both astounded -- he doubts that Biggs can even make his planned rendezvous with the Rebels -- and jealous. As we all know from his incessant whining in the scenes that did make the final cut, Luke is unhappy to be stuck on Tatooine. But he tells Biggs that he can't leave; his uncle needs him for the harvest. This is where Biggs warns that the galaxy is on the road to serfdom:

    What good's all your uncle's work if the Empire takes it over? You know they've already started to nationalize commerce in the central systems? It won't be long before your uncle is just a tenant, slaving for the greater glory of the Empire.

    In his characterization of Imperial economic policy, George Lucas was most likely thinking of National Socialism; few viewers miss the resemblance between Imperial and Nazi uniforms. But the flat assertion of the fundamental injustice of nationalization is striking when one considers the state of global politics in 1977. Not only was half the world under the yoke of Communism, nationalization was a perfectly respectable policy even in the West. U.S. railroads were nationalized in 1970. Between 1975 and 1977, Britain nationalized much of its automobile, aircraft, and shipbuilding industries; British Steel had been nationalized in 1967. One wonders if a different cut of Star Wars would have become a rallying cry for Thatcherites.
    Something along the lines of Libertie! Egalitie! Tatoonie!

    I kid, of course. It was Star Wars that ignited the entire gay marriage movement

    Art again shows us the true path...

    posted by tbogg at 11:04 AM


    Friday, May 25, 2007


    Dumbo-sized flaps
    Why the long face...

    Down in comments Ruthie asked what was up with the droopy eyes on bassets, and since I have nothing better to do this evening, I'll try to explain as it was explained to me.

    Bassets, like bloodhounds, are scent dogs generally used for tracking (or, in our case, sleeping on the furniture) and they were bred to have loose skin around their faces so that when they put their nose to the ground to follow the scent the folds of skin "hold" the scent so that they don't get distracted. The same goes for the overdeveloped ears that cowl around the face to keep the scent. Because they were and are used to track rabbits and other animals that go to ground, they were also bred to have short powerful legs (a type of dwarfism) to keep them close to the ground and allow them to dig and follow their prey down into the hole if given a chance. Their tails are quite thick which allows the owner to pull them back out since they're somewhat bullheaded and have one-track minds. One last thing about their tails: it should always have a white tip and it should curve upwards which allows the owner to spot them in low brush.

    You'll also read that the breed tends to weigh between 45-70 pounds... Cooder, our first, was the runt and he weighed 45 pounds. Satchmo maxed at at out 88, and Beckham is close to eighty now and I expect he may hit in the nineties. They're not purse dogs.

    Unless you're Karen Hughes...

    Labels: ,

    posted by tbogg at 10:59 PM



    Friday Night Palate Cleanser

    The great Joan Armatrading

    We used to go see her quite a bit back in the eighties and she never failed to give me goosebumps several times per show. She's back on tour again.

    posted by tbogg at 10:37 PM



    Because this is how Mitt rolls

    Mitt Romney (father of five, grandfather of twenty-three...whoops - twenty-four...whoops - now twenty-five, and only one wife ...for the moment) is totally down with the kids as indicated by his myspace page . In fact Mitt has 21186 friends if you include his wife and five military-aged-but-not-serving sons. And when Mitt is not hanging out with Mike Wallace (who is slightly older than Mitt and likes to steal hats) he likes to roll with the MittPosse™ and par-tay.

    Like with Heather B, for instance:

    May 24 2007 7:52A You have my support!

    And if Heather (warning: crazy hippity-hop music) is a fan of Mitt, then Mitt is gracious enough to be a friend of Heather and, in fact, he totally blends with her and her friends.

    Aaaaa-oooo! Postum and Red Bulls for everyone and crank up the Kingston Trio because we're goin' to Mexico!


    posted by tbogg at 5:24 PM



    My circumcision has a first name, it's O-s-c-a-r...
    Jonah and the hoo-hoos:
    End of Civilization Part 392,002,112,039.zz [Jonah Goldberg]

    There's a headline for ya:

    Designer Vagina Surgery Growing Because of Porn
    Unsuprisingly, America's Most Non-Gay Man was on this like it was a Play-Doh and bacon sandwich:
    This is all very similar to women getting their nails done. Women don't do that for men; they do that for other women and themselves. No guy on earth has ever noticed a woman had "pretty nails" and a "nice pedicure" until she told him to compliment her on it.

    And no guy in the world is even noticing labial size. Unless they're enormous Dumbo-flaps or something. In which case, they may be noticed, but guys being guys, we probably find it to be a turn-on just because it's somewhat unusual.
    When I read his reference to "enormous Dumbo-flaps" I was somehow reminded of:
    Andy Stitzer: You know how when you grab a woman's breast... it feels like... a bag of sand.
    David: What?

    posted by tbogg at 3:58 PM



    If I want your opinion I'll beat the correct one out of you

    The war to depose Saddam was, in fact, remarkably short. And yes, warnings about post-Saddam Iraq—all couched in qualifying CYA language of “could” or “might”—have proven true, though it is NOT true that Iraqis want us out of the country now.

    Eventually, yes. Inevitably, yes. But not now—not while they are still vulnerable. At least, if you can believe the polls—which, again, the US and international press have gone out of their way to spin negatively.
    Only a third of the Iraqi people now believe that the American-led occupation of their country is doing more good than harm, and a solid majority support an immediate military pullout even though they fear that could put them in greater danger, according to a new USA TODAY/CNN/Gallup Poll.


    But while they acknowledge benefits from dumping Saddam a year ago, Iraqis no longer see the presence of the American-led military as a plus. Asked whether they view the U.S.-led coalition as "liberators" or "occupiers," 71% of all respondents say "occupiers."

    That figure reaches 81% if the separatist, pro-U.S. Kurdish minority in northern Iraq is not included. The negative characterization is just as high among the Shiite Muslims who were oppressed for decades by Saddam as it is among the Sunni Muslims who embraced him.

    The growing negative attitude toward the Americans is also reflected in two related survey questions: 53% say they would feel less secure without the coalition in Iraq, but 57% say the foreign troops should leave anyway. Those answers were given before the current showdowns in Fallujah and Najaf between U.S. troops and guerrilla fighters.

    The findings come as the U.S. administration is struggling to quell the insurgency and turn over limited sovereignty to an interim Iraqi government by the end of June. Interviews this week in Baghdad underscored the findings.

    "I'm not ungrateful that they took away Saddam Hussein," says Salam Ahmed, 30, a Shiite businessman. "But the job is done. Thank you very much. See you later. Bye-bye."
    June 16, 2004
    The first survey of Iraqis sponsored by the U.S. Coalition Provisional Authority after the Abu Ghraib prison scandal shows that most say they would feel safer if Coalition forces left immediately, without even waiting for elections scheduled for next year. An overwhelming majority, about 80 percent, also say they have “no confidence” in either the U.S. civilian authorities or Coalition forces.

    Sixty-seven percent of those surveyed also said they believed violent attacks have increased around the country because “people have lost faith in the Coalition forces.”

    The poll numbers were reflected in the anger seen in the streets of Baghdad after a series of car bombings on Monday. While U.S forces and Iraqi police hung back, crowds set some of the vehicles on fire, threw bricks and shouted insults at U.S. soldiers. According to the poll, a mere 1 percent of Iraqis now feel that the Coalition forces contribute most to their sense of security; only 18 percent described Iraqi police the same way. By contrast, a total of 71 percent said they depended mostly on their family and friends and neighbors for security.
    January 28, 2005
    Iraq’s Sunday elections will be held against a backdrop of deep division between the country’s ethnic groups, with an overwhelming majority of Sunni Arabs refusing to vote in the January 30 elections, a new Abu Dhabi TV/Zogby International poll finds. The poll also finds majorities of both Iraq’s Shiites and Sunnis calling for a rapid withdrawal of U.S. forces from their soil. Zogby International polled 805 Iraqi adults from January 19 to 23, 2005 on behalf of television broadcaster Abu Dhabi TV. The margin of error is +/- 3.6 percentage points.

    The survey, to be released at 5 p.m. ET on Abu Dhabi Television, found three-quarters (76%) of Sunni Arabs say they definitely will not vote in the January 30 elections, while just 9% say they are likely to vote. A majority of Shiites (80%) say they are likely to vote or definitely will vote, as are a smaller majority of Kurds (57%).

    Majorities of both Sunni Arabs (82%) and Shiites (69%) also favor U.S. forces withdrawing either immediately or after an elected government is in place.

    The poll also found that of Iraq’s ethnic and religious groups, only the Kurds believe the U.S. will “help” Iraq over the next five years, while half (49%) of Shiites and a majority (64%) of Sunni Arabs believe the U.S. will “hurt” Iraq.
    September 27, 2006
    A new WPO poll of the Iraqi public finds that seven in ten Iraqis want U.S.-led forces to commit to withdraw within a year. An overwhelming majority believes that the U.S. military presence in Iraq is provoking more conflict than it is preventing and there is growing confidence in the Iraqi army. If the United States made a commitment to withdraw, a majority believes that this would strengthen the Iraqi government. Support for attacks on U.S.-led forces has grown to a majority position—now six in ten. Support appears to be related to a widespread perception, held by all ethnic groups, that the U.S. government plans to have permanent military bases in Iraq.


    A large majority of Iraqis—71%—say they would like the Iraqi government to ask for U.S.-led forces to be withdrawn from Iraq within a year or less. Given four options, 37 percent take the position that they would like U.S.-led forces withdrawn “within six months,” while another 34 percent opt for “gradually withdraw[ing] U.S.-led forces according to a one-year timeline.” Twenty percent favor a two-year timeline and just 9 percent favor “only reduc[ing] U.S.-led forces as the security situation improves in Iraq.”
    May 10, 2007
    Blair’s gone, centrist Republicans are in revolt, the Iraqi parliament’s planning to take a little summer vay-cay while U.S. troops are busy dodging IEDs, and now this. It’s a perfect storm. I think it’s safe to say we’re at endgame.

    A majority of Iraqi lawmakers have endorsed a bill calling for a timetable for the withdrawal of foreign troops and demanding a freeze on the number of foreign troops already in the country, lawmakers said Thursday…

    The Iraqi bill, drafted by a parliamentary bloc loyal to anti-American Shiite cleric Muqtada al-Sadr, was signed by 144 members of the 275-member house, according to Nassar al-Rubaie, the leader of the Sadrist bloc.

    The Sadrist bloc, which sees the U.S.-led forces as an occupying army, has pushed similar bills before, but this was the first time it had garnered the support of a majority of lawmakers…

    May 16, 2007
    Some key Republican supporters of President Bush's Iraq war policy said this week that if the Iraqi parliament calls for the withdrawal of U.S. troops, their position could change dramatically.

    "I suspect we would respect their wishes," said Florida Rep. Adam Putnam, the third-ranking Republican in the House.

    "I think that it would reflect a successful, healthy and well-running parliamentary organization that was delivered to that nation by the sacrifices of our fighting men and women." Putnam was responding to a bill a majority of Iraqi lawmakers signed on to earlier this month supporting a timetable for withdrawal of U.S. forces.
    Obviously the "otherness" of the Iraqis prevents them from seeing how these poll questions have been "framed" and therefore their responses are epistemologically suspect.


    posted by tbogg at 11:03 AM


    Thursday, May 24, 2007


    Pre-Friday Random Ten ThingyYou can look, but you can't touch
    I don't think I like you much
    Heaven knows what a girl can do
    Heaven knows what you've got to prove

    Shadows of Salford - Doves
    Come On - Tegan & Sara
    Amplifier - the dBs
    Kingpin - Wilco
    Allures - Stereolab
    I Think I'm Paranoid - Garbage
    Fable of the Brown Ape - Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds
    Home of the Brave - Spiritualized
    Pillars and Parasites - Ten Pound Brown
    Stutter - Elastica
    bonus # 1+1+1+1+1+1+1+1+1+1+1 = Steal My Sunshine - Len


    posted by tbogg at 9:45 PM



    Thursday Night Basset Blogging

    I hope you all appreciate that I ran home first to put these up before going out tonight. I blog my fingers to the bone and what do I get? Boney bloggy fingers....

    ...and a bonus 'fat boy at the beach' picture to give Scott Lemieux another reason to hate beaches

    Labels: ,

    posted by tbogg at 5:07 PM



    Mama weer all crazee now

    Getting Leslee Unruh on national TV is the best thing that can ever happen for pro-choicers.

    What a loon.

    posted by tbogg at 2:52 PM



    Men who love women who love women who love babies

    Mary Cheney (whose book is now officially cheaper than Presto Logs) gave birth to David Crosby's baby yesterday and, for the official picture, young Damien Cheney posed with a noted lesbian novelist and Satan's BFF. John and Jane Sullivan Roberts are expected to petition for custody of young Damien before he becomes tainted.

    Besides, Jane has been in the market for a "purse baby" for some time now.

    posted by tbogg at 7:06 AM



    The horror...the horror

    Wow. Just awful.

    posted by tbogg at 6:31 AM


    Wednesday, May 23, 2007


    If you have to play the Mattera card, you've already lost
    Still not in Iraq

    First we start with Barry Lucier who had to do something in college that he didn't like:

    Now, unless you're a regular Fox viewer you might say that didn't go so well. I mean, college is all about professors requiring you to read, say, Joseph Conrad's The Secret Agent and you counter-offering to watch The Silencers instead. So, perhaps sensing that B Lucier might need some moral support, YAF sent him on Hannity & Colmes with Jason Mattera who does battles with ideas and the results are...grim:

    Mattera responded that his organization “takes abuse cases” and called the requirement to view Gore’s film “academic abuse.” In fact, I found no such service offered on the organization’s website. Young America’s Foundation described itself as “an educational organization that sponsors speakers on campus and in the community, provides activist resources and materials, holds conferences and seminars, and saved the Reagan Ranch.”

    Mattera, who has no discernible credentials in either global warming, filmmaking or education, called Gore's film “a highly political movie in a science class.”

    Colmes pointed out that the vast majority of scientists agree with Gore’s position on global warming. “Do we give equal weight, Jason, to a view that’s a minority view? …You want to have equal time for something that is not of equal scientific weight.”

    A cocky Mattera asked, “Who you are (sic) to say that’s not equal scientific weight? …You don’t light (sic) a candle intellectually to any of these men.”
    And if anyone knows how to "light a candle intellectually" it is Jason who graduated summa cum laude from Roger Williams University. Although, based on this (pdf), we have to assume that Roger Williams must give out summa's like mints at Red Lobster.

    It appears that Roger Williamsis infested with white boy grandstanders.
    A morning radio show has been suspended indefinitely from a Rhode Island university's student radio station following its coverage of the Don Imus controversy.

    Morning Again, a weekly conservative radio show hosted by Roger Williams University College Republicans Dana Peloso and Jonathan Porter on 88.3FM WQRI, was pulled from the air Tuesday afternoon after using the term "nappy headed hoes" in its discussion of the Don Imus controversy.

    According to Peloso, the co-hosts received word of the suspension from WQRI program director Mike Martelli, who Peloso maintains came under heavy influence by University Vice President John King. King allegedly contacted Martelli late last week in an attempt to have the show pulled immediately after the dual hosts covered the Imus controversy on a special Sunday edition of the show.
    In an email responding to RIReport's inquiries, Program Manager Michael Martelli writes the following:

    (Peloso and Porter) were suspended because of insubordination and have consequently been fired because they did not have the patience to take part in an investigation by the station's student run executive board...Since they decided to jump the gun and go to the press I am lead to believe that this has little to do with concerns of censorship and has more to do with gaining attention.

    Jon and Dana mentioned the Imus Phrase more than 30 times in 28 minutes, they did little to actually discuss the first amendment and it was quite clear that Jon and Dana were trying to cause trouble. Their actions were irresponsible and had no journalistic character. This is the reason I have decided to let them go.

    The University has nothing to do with this decision, it is 100% mine.
    You'll notice that Dana Peloso is on the board of the College Republican Federation of Rhode Island along with... Barry Lucier. I guess they're trying to one-up each other before not enlisting to fight for freedom.

    posted by tbogg at 11:19 PM



    I hate you and I wish I was a Romney!

    Fred Thompson's son might have to go back to living in the basement:
    Former Tennessee Senator and potential Republican presidential candidate Fred Thompson has shut down a political action committee that paid out more money to his son than it did in political donations.

    Federal Election Commission records analyzed by the Blotter on ABCNews.com show Thompson's committee paid $178,000 to his son's political consulting firm, Daniel Thompson Associates, since 2003.

    In contrast, the committee made only $66,700 in contributions to other campaigns and political committees in the four years since Thompson retired from the Senate.

    The payments to Thompson's son were described as for management and consulting services.
    I guess it's too late to try out to be the sixth brother because that's where all the cash is.

    posted by tbogg at 10:50 PM



    Things I learned at Regent U. Law

    In a strong opening gambit, Monica Goodling invokes the Paris Hilton Defense:

    Goodling initially refused to answer committee chairman John Conyers' first question -- about who drew up the list of prosecutors who were fired last year. Conyers responded by granting Goodling immunity, as approved earlier by the judge.

    "You are obligated to answer each question completely and truthfully," Conyers, D-Mich., said sternly.

    ‘Did you break the law?’

    Rep. Bobby Scott, D-Va., hammered Goodling on her decisions to hire prosecutors who favored Republicans.

    “Do you believe they were illegal or legal?” Scott asked.

    “I don’t believe I intended to commit a crime,” Goodling, a lawyer, answered.

    “Did you break the law? Is it against the law to take those considerations into account?” Scott said.

    “I believe I crossed the line, but I didn’t mean to,” she responded.

    Considering her theological bent, we can expect the Flip Wilson ("The devil made me do it") defense before the day is out.

    posted by tbogg at 9:10 AM



    His anaconda don't want none unless you got funds, hon.

    Hey lay-deez! International Man of Misery and Shaha Shagger, Paul Wolfowitz is back on the market!

    PAUL Wolfowitz has really had a bad couple of weeks. He not only lost his job, he lost his girlfriend, too.

    Wolfowitz, one of the architects of the Iraq war, was pushed out as president of the World Bank over a controversial pay and promotion package he arranged for his brunette girlfriend, Shaha Ali Riza.

    Sources say Riza, a brilliant feminist with a promising diplomatic career, was upset by all the publicity and the implication that she was getting ahead with the help of a powerful man. "She was furious about the embarrassment," said one source.


    Investigative reporter Wayne Madsen, who broke some of the first stories on the Wolfowitz scandal on waynemadsenreport.com, said reliable sources confirmed to him "that Wolfie and Shaha are history."

    Madsen adds that last week, he spotted Ali Riza by herself, walking up 19th Street in Washington from World Bank offices after Wolfowitz appeared in a closed-door meeting before the bank's executive board. "I thought to myself . . . it's strange she'd be alone right now," Madsen said.
    Now you may be thinking "Why would I want to have anything to do with that comb-licking toad?", but keep in mind that the World Bank is about to award him a $400,000 "longevity" bonus. Say no more. Nudge nudge wink wink. So if you're looking for a man with a lot of time on his hands to "invade your marshy southern borders" and "liberate" you, just dial 1-900-WOLFALOT and kick those nasty thoughts.

    Wolfie is back.

    posted by tbogg at 8:10 AM


    Tuesday, May 22, 2007


    Life ain't fair

    Shorter Gun Counter Gomer
    Dagnabbit! ABC is forcing us to start another war that my knee will keep me out of.

    posted by tbogg at 10:22 PM



    The internets surge

    Yesterday we learned that the right was losing the Internet War :
    When David All, a former Republican congressional aide, launched a blog recently that he hopes will spur his fellow Republicans to bridge the digital divide, he did his best to sound upbeat. "Today our Revolution begins," he wrote. "Tomorrow we fight."

    But implicit in his cheerleading was the acknowledgment that there is a widening gap between Democrats and Republicans on the Internet, and that his party will have to scramble to catch up. "For the most part Republicans are stuck in Internet circa 2000," he said in an interview.

    Another Republican -- Michael Turk, who was in charge of Internet strategy for President Bush's 2004 campaign -- puts the problem his party faces more bluntly: "We're losing the Web right now."
    In fact, things are so bad that Republican Congressmen you have never heard of are mocking the warbloggers:
    Says John Linder, member of the House GOP Steering Committee:

    "I really don't pay much attention to blogs," he said. "You can say anything on those blogs without any attribution and get away with it."

    Liberal blogs have been influential, the Georgia lawmaker acknowledged. But he dismissed their conservative counterparts, saying, "I don't pay any attention to them."
    So the guys over at TechRepublican have a new stategy that is so far outside of the box that some might call it a new paradigm:

    Blogs....Not Just for Words. Taking Campaign Blogs to The Next Level

    So some of us are a little more on the visual side of the spectrum when it comes to learning and connecting. Not a bad thing. JibJab served it's purpose for the last couple of election cycles but it was bi-patisian and entertained more than shaped the debate. So where am I going with this? Well, the GOP bloggers of this next cycle need to research and find out how we can start to shape the debate by adding fresh commentary that is presented in a sharp and pointed way and use video to drive that message home.

    I am hoping this first installment of the Gadget Corner here on techRepublican can motivate those of you with blogs to look into adding this feature and in the future we can lead the way in getting this tactic into the mainstream of GOP campaign. Lets break the ground now and form a template of what works and give future web friendly consultants a jumping off place to begin their own efforts in the furture.

    And with the magic of video, jump they will

    You go to war with the cheerleaders you have, not the cheerleaders you wish had...

    posted by tbogg at 8:09 AM


    Monday, May 21, 2007


    One less bell to answer....

    Today I packed my last school lunch. Forever.

    We're in the last two weeks of high school with graduation a week from this Saturday and the lovely and talented Casey is on half-days from this point forward as her school year limps to the end. No more dragging myself upstairs at 6AM after five hours of sleep and contemplating various meats and cheeses and fruits and chips and little bags of mini-carrots when I would rather be contemplating my pillow. In addition, there was the Daily Naming of the Child, where I would have to come up with an alternative name to Sharpie onto her lunch bag because that was our dad-daughter private joke. The year that began with Princess Sparkle Pony ended with Alice Inchains. As you can see, the end came none too soon.

    In the meantime we will run the gauntlet of the Catering-Industrial Complex as we attend a luncheon tomorrow put on by her high school athletic department for the thirty or so athletes who will be going on to play their sports at the collegiate level, the banquet Thursday night for her soccer team, the senior luncheon for students and parents next Thursday, and then graduation...and a luncheon. It's like a series of bacchanalias before the baccalaureate.

    Then there will be ten weeks of summer before she boards a plane for Chaminade University of Honolulu for two weeks of two-a-days before the season starts.

    A few words about how we selected Chaminade. After Casey's knee injury the Division I schools that had shown an interest in her, disappeared on us and her club director suggested that she consider D-II schools that would be glad to have her. Our requirements were that it be a small school (she's attended small private schools for all but 1 1/2 years), that it not be in the midwest or far from an ocean (fearing culture shock) and that it offer her chosen major, Forensic Science. Chaminade fielded their first womens soccer team last year ( hastily put together last July) , only has 1500 students, offers as BS in Forensic Science, and that ocean part is pretty self evident. After making trips to several UC's and and a few other universities in the Bay Area, it was an easy choice for her and we support it fully.

    It's weird thinking that she'll be on an island and not somewhere up the coast where she can easily come home during breaks or for a weekend and that is going to take some getting used to. We won't get to see her play as much as we would have liked, but since she made the traveling team already, we know that she will touch down briefly on the mainland (or as I call it: America) during the season and we will probably plan some vacation time in Hawaii during the season.

    I can think of a lot worse places to go.

    So this is it. The first and only child steps away from being on her way and I wish I could say that I'm ready for it, but I'm not. I'm starting to miss her already.

    Making lunch at 6AM... not so much.

    posted by tbogg at 9:37 PM



    Hits and misses

    In response to MANY emails we indulge in our love of all things bad for Stapp:
    Scott Stapp has apparently fallen off the wagon and back on to the police blotter.

    The former Creed frontman was arrested Sunday at his home in Boca Raton, Florida, and charged with felony assault stemming from a domestic violence row, according to the Palm Beach County Sheriff's Office.

    According to a sheriff spokesman, Stapp returned to his residence about 8 a.m. after a long night of partying and was confronted by his wife, former Miss New York USA 2004 Jaclyn Nesheiwat, who began quizzing him on where he'd been. At that point, the Human Clay singer became defensive and the couple started arguing.

    "He got angrier and allegedly threw a glass bottle of Orangina, almost hitting her in the right side of her face," sheriff spokesman Paul Miller tells E! Online. "She was in fear at that point that he might do something else, so that's when Palm Beach County deputies were called to the scene."

    No one was injured in the incident. Miller said deputies corroborated Nesheiwat's account and that the 33-year-old rock star was "deceptive" when they questioned him about throwing the bottle.

    Stapp was taken into custody and charged with one count of assault with intent to commit a felony. He was held overnight without bond at the Palm Beach County Jail before appearing in court this morning.

    There, Judge Cory J. Ciklin reduced the charge to misdemeanor assault after determining the Orangina bottle was not a deadly weapon.


    Stapp is also temporarily barred from contacting Nesheiwat, though the judge did grant him access to a separate building at their expansive Florida estate so he can work on his music.
    So, basically he's still a threat to society.

    Goddamn liberal judges...

    posted by tbogg at 9:02 PM


    Sunday, May 20, 2007


    The smell of Republican fratricide in the morning
    What the hell do you know about surfing?
    You're from goddamned New Jersey

    John Hawkins on the immigration bill:

    If this bill passes the Senate, I'm going to organize multiple Googlebombs that target every Republican in the Senate who is up for reelection in 2008 and votes for this amnesty bill. I'm going to find the worst, most damaging, hit pieces on the entire world wide web and I'm going see to it that every person who searches for the name of a pro-amnesty Republican in the Senate will see those articles. I organized GoogleBombs last year that targeted Democratic candidates and we got 70 out of 86 negative links in the top 30 search results on Google. This year, since we have more time, we will probably have an even higher success rate.

    How much will that hurt? It'll probably cost these Republican Senators a few thousand votes each -- but how many of these pro-amnesty Republicans feel comfortable throwing even a few thousand votes away? I guess we'll find out....but that's not all I'm going do.

    Last year, I organized the Rightroots effort to raise more than a quarter of a million dollars for Republican candidates in the last 3 months of the election. This year, if this amnesty bill passes, I'm going to organize a group of blogers to raise money for any viable primary challengers to pro-amnesty Republicans in the Senate. I'm also going to offer those candidates my services, pro-bono, as a consultant, to try to get their names out in the blogosphere. On top of that, I'm going to hunt down every single piece of dirt I can find on the pro-amnesty Republicans and I'm going to release it in the blogosphere. Put another way, if you're a Republican Senator up for reelection in 2008 and you vote for amnesty -- and you face a viable primary challenger -- I've got two words for you,

    Scorched Earth.

    : I love the smell of napalm in the morning. You know, one time we had a hill bombed, for 12 hours. When it was all over, I walked up. We didn't find one of 'em, not one stinkin' dink body. The smell, you know that gasoline smell, the whole hill. Smelled like... victory

    posted by tbogg at 9:43 PM



    Good Morning

    Modern Jazz Quartet.

    posted by tbogg at 12:55 AM


    Saturday, May 19, 2007


    Anchor Babies on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown

    Michelle Malkin really really really really hates Mexicans. Even more so than African-Americans, Muslims, college students, Democrats, and Chris Matthews. So when George Bush pushes for an immigration bill that displeases Michelle, well, she becomes positively unhinged and tips over into Bush Derangement Syndrome
    The bigger "F**k you!"
    By Michelle Malkin · May 19, 2007 10:30 PM

    So, open-borders sellout John McCain cursed out Sen. John Cornyn. Yawn.

    I didn't get all worked up about it. You know why?

    Because when it comes to "F**k yous!," no obscene utterance compares to the George W. Bush-backed, RNC-backed, Kennedy-conspired, fantasy-based amnesty profanity unleashed on conservatives and the country. Message:

    A wise six year-old once said:

    Life's disappointments are harder to take
    when you don't know any swear words.

    He never met Michelle Malkin.

    posted by tbogg at 10:07 PM


    Friday, May 18, 2007


    Friday Night Palate Cleanser

    God knows how much you people love Phish, those dirty Vermont hippies.

    posted by tbogg at 7:56 PM



    Everyone's gone to the movies...

    Before stepping out for awhile to see an obscure European art film about doubt and hatred and death and redemption, I just wanted to thank Geralyn in Tampa for the BBC Office DVD collection and David in SF for the copy of Z... along with all of the stuff that he ordered for himself that they sent to me by mistake.

    What anyone wants with 22 copies of The Very Best of Meatloaf is a mystery best left unsolved...

    ****Later that day****

    Well that was kind of sucky.I love Sam Raimi, but he should never be allowed to write the script ever again. The sad thing is that there were other movies we would have rather seen, but we felt compelled to see #3 because it was on the big screen and something like Away From Her can wait for the small screen at home with a fire going.

    Whatever. Like Spiderman, we have to live with the choices we make.

    posted by tbogg at 1:58 PM



    Apologia for me but not for thee

    Shorter Doug Kmiec:
    Oh pish-posh. It was just a simple disagreement and Alberto Gonzales would never do anything intentionally wrong.
    Older Doug Kmiec:
    And in a January 6 Wall Street Journal commentary, Kmiec credited (login required) Gonzales with the Justice Department's ultimate rejection of the memo:

    Even before confirmation, Mr. Gonzales has demonstrated that no presidential or personal friendship will oblige him to persist in the errors of others. He deserves substantial credit for returning the whole torture memo matter to the Department of Justice for rethinking. It is the hallmark of a wise counselor who has the courage -- even in the face of national embarrassment -- to see error, and to correct it in a fashion that does not undermine the necessary authority of the president to engage in the humane interrogation of those captured in the war on terror.

    But the suggestion that Gonzales recognized the problem and took the initiative in "returning the whole torture memo to the Department of Justice for rethinking" is misleading. On December 27, 2004, Newsweek reported that Gonzales distanced himself from the memo only after "Jack Goldsmith, then head of the Justice Department's Office of Legal Counsel, told Gonzales he was withdrawing the Aug. 1 [2002] memo" and subsequently resigned. According to a Washington Post article, Gonzales -- responding to "pressure from Congress and outrage around the world" -- described the memo as "controversial" and "subject to misinterpretation." But his comments did not come until June 22 -- several weeks after the Post first made the memo public. And it was not until December 30, 2004, more than two years after the memo was delivered, that the Justice Department issued a revised version.

    For even better Doug Kmiec, please turn to page 48 in The Rule of Law in the Wake of Clinton. and read on.

    The folks at The Volokh Conspiracy aren't buying Kmiec either.


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