the tragedy seemed from that time to the present to have finally taken its place in the dark catalogue of inexplicable and unexpiated crimes

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I meant to post this yesterday, but the vicious editor that lives inside by brain was nagging me about the length of the posts so we’ll do it today. I was a little ambivalent about White House adviser Claude A. Allen’s shoplifting scheme, maybe do to conservative corruption overload. Rather then devoting this blog and way too much of my time solely to the corruption scandals plaqueing the Republican party and this administration I rely on progressive muckrakers like TPM. Then after reading this post at Bad Attitudes I realized how important the story was, Claude Allen’s Free Pass

Let’s put this in perspective. This is not the guy who took out the garbage in the White House. He was the rough equivalent, let’s say, of Robert Reich in Clinton’s administration. In the Carter White House Allen’s job was held by Stu Eisenstat.

In the Bush White House Allen filled the same White House post on the domestic policy side that Condoleezza Rice filled on the foreign policy side. And before that, he was the operating head of the Department of Health and Human Services under Tommy Thompson.

Ex-Enron worker says Lay lies cost him his savings

A former Enron Corp. pipeline worker testified on Tuesday he lost his retirement savings when he held on to his Enron stock because then-chief executive Ken Lay said the company was strong just weeks before it went bankrupt.

Johnnie Nelson, 46, said after 16 years with the company he was a loyal Lay supporter, but that Lay lied at a critical time in October 2001 when many workers wondered whether to sell their fast-falling Enron stock.

“He violated my trust,” the plain-spoken Nelson said in the fraud and conspiracy trial of Lay and fellow former Enron boss Jeffrey Skilling. “All we wanted was the truth, good or bad, so we could make our decisions.”

When Lay lawyer Mac Secrest told him Lay himself had lost hundreds of millions of dollars on the stock, the bearded Nelson replied sarcastically, “I’m heartbroken.”

Quote of the day in bold.

You look at a painting or photo and you see a cow, a grassy meadow, a fence. You’ve looked at it several times, so has your friends and neighbors. Along comes some right-wing bloggers who swear they and they alone can see the truth of things, you my friend have had your perception of reality twisted. That is not a cow, its an alien spacecraft, that is not a meadow, its the ashes from the craft’s energy field, and the fence is a relic of the space god the flying purple cookie monster. Iraq is the right-wing bloggers alien space craft, their country, their Eden, their penthouse at the Plaza. If only liberals, independents and moderate conservatives would drink the kool-aid we too could see their ultimate reality, death is life in kool-aid world, bloodied stumps are healthy legs, children love having their bedrooms invaded by armed soldiers, torture and sexual humiliation are Iraq’s Disney-like adventures. I need not supply links, use your favorite search engine – iraq is going great, bush declares victory, insurgency in last throes, iraq elections+turning the corner. Do conservatives hate the sixties because they never recovered from that electric kool-aid acid trip…Scores of bodies found in Baghdad, Army faces accusation of cover-up over Iraq deaths-ROYAL Military Police investigators are facing severe criticism for the way they handled a fatal shooting in Iraq in which a British tank commander and an Iraqi were killed, Bush’s Fantasy of “Progress” in Iraq

Al-Zaman says that the Shiite religious coalition, the United Iraqi Alliance, has rejected a system of cabinet rule, wherein the prime minister would have to take issues to his cabinet for a vote. From a Shiite point of view, the US and other Iraqi factions are trying to find ways of robbing it of its electoral victory on Dec. 15.

>Iraq’s electricity production has fallen to a 3-year low, in large part because of a successful guerrilla tactic of sabotage. They are besieging Baghdad with regard to fuel and electricity, demoralizing the most politically central portion of the population– the 6 million inhabitants of the capital, a fourth of the country. The Bush administration may need Iran’s help to bail them out this summer .

U.S. military airstrikes significantly increased in Iraq

BAGHDAD, Iraq – American forces have dramatically increased airstrikes in Iraq during the past five months, a change of tactics that may foreshadow how the United States plans to battle a still-strong insurgency while reducing the number of U.S. ground troops serving here.

A review of military data shows that daily bombing runs and jet-missile launches have increased by more than 50 percent in the past five months, compared with the same period last year. Knight Ridder’s statistical findings were reviewed and confirmed by American Air Force officials in the region.

The numbers also show that U.S. forces dropped bombs on more cities during the last five months than they did during the same period a year ago

I prefer iced tea to kool-aid, maybe that’s way I just can’t twist and turn reality into something that it is not.

God knows what she is going through, but Jill Carroll still alive in Iraq

A future vice-president perhaps, 3-Year-Old Boy Shoots Mom in the Knee

Feingold Assails Dems on Bush Censure

“I’m amazed at Democrats … cowering with this president’s numbers so low,” Feingold said.

The latest AP-Ipsos poll on Bush, conducted last week, found just 37 percent of the 1,000 people surveyed approving his overall performance, the lowest of his presidency.

Majority Leader Bill Frist, R-Tenn., tried to hold a vote Monday on Feingold’s resolution but was blocked by Democrats. He said Tuesday that Feingold should withdraw the resolution because it has no support.

“If the Democrats continue to say no to voting on their own censure resolution, then they ought to drop it and focus on our foreign policy in a positive way,” Frist said in a statement.

Feingold’s resolution condemns Bush’s “unlawful authorization of wiretaps of Americans within the United States without obtaining the court orders required” by the 1978 Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act.

I’m not going to bash Democrats, they’re are plenty of web sites on the right and left that do so daily, but I second Senator Feingold’s thoughts. Democrats have absolutely nothing to lose by trying to hold the president accountable. Conservatives in Washington and on the net will be twisting themselves into knots in the next few years disassociating themselves from the worst presidency in a hundred years.

Democrats Beat Quick Retreat on Call to Censure President

“The president may be wrong,” Mr. Specter said, “but he has acted in good faith.”

I guess there is not a limit on the number of times Bush apologists can reach into the well of tired cliches. Yes Bush burned your house down, but he was just trying to kill a cockroach in the kitchen so that makes it OK. Even with death hanging like a cloud over Specter, the very real chance that these are his last moments on earth, his political pandering takes precedent over patriotic courage. Another modern tragedy that doesn’t have to be could be turned on a few words of genuine conviction from a conservative like Specter or Hagel.

There are many who will still bear in mind the singular circumstances which, under the heading of the Rugby Mystery, filled many columns of the daily Press in the spring of the year 1892. Coming as it did at a period of exceptional dullness, it attracted perhaps rather more attention than it deserved, but it offered to the public that mixture of the whimsical and the tragic which is most stimulating to the popular imagination. Interest drooped, however, when, after weeks of fruitless investigation, it was found that no final explanation of the facts was forthcoming, and the tragedy seemed from that time to the present to have finally taken its place in the dark catalogue of inexplicable and unexpiated crimes. A recent communication (the authenticity of which appears to be above question) has, however, thrown some new and clear light upon the matter. Before laying it before the public it would be as well, perhaps, that I should refresh their memories as to the singular facts upon which this commentary is founded. These facts were briefly as follows:
At five o’clock on the evening of the 18th of March in the year already mentioned a train left Euston Station for Manchester.

from the story The Man with the Watches by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

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