Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Random Political Thoughts for a Wednesday Afternoon

It’s Wednesday, we all know what that means.

“E-Ring” on NBC? Uh, no.

“Skating with Celebrities” on Fox? Uh, no.

“South Beach” on UPN? You’re kidding me, right??? UPN is still around?

No, it’s time for another installment of ‘As the Shrub Turns’… otherwise known as Random Political Thoughts for a Wednesday Afternoon or RPTFAWA.

Last week we hit a nerve with our reading public to the extent that our site and last week’s RPTFAWA got a shout-out over at Democratic Underground. (Click here to see the shout-out)

It’s another Wednesday, so we go at it again and hope we touch another nerve with the American public.

Abramoff at the White House. Convicted über-lobbyist Jack Abramoff had a “few staff-level meetings” at the White House, but press secretary Scott “Don’t call me CJ” McClellan refused to disclose who met with Abramoff or what they talked about. (Why is it whenever I hear McClellan’s name I think of the phrase ‘hear no evil, see no evil, speak no evil’?) Now, people are acting with surprise that Abramoff even visited the White House, to which I say; “I am shocked. Shocked to find gambling in this establishment.”

White House Calls Gore Hypocritical. (Hello Kettle? This is The pot… you’re black) After Al Gore’s raucous and inspiring speech on Monday the White House called Gore out and ordered AG Alberto Gonzalez to toss accusations about national security during the Clinton Administration his way. The Associated Press has since smacked down those accusations. Having said that, we should be thankful to the White House because every time they try to argue their points with Gore, it keeps the story, and thus his speech, in the public eye for that much longer. Good work guys.

Donkey vs. Elephant Lobbying Measures. Forget dueling banjos, how about dueling lobbying measures. Both parties are poised to offer up their own measures to restrict lobbying. The Republican's offering, not surprisingly, has a few loopholes; the largest being a trip could be privately financed as long as it includes the exchange of a campaign check. The Democrat’s offering has not been announced yet (that should be coming sometime this afternoon) but I am sure it will also have some loopholes as I don’t see either side willing to give away EVERY lobbyist perk they receive. Stay tuned.

Medicare Problems + Bush Administration = PR Campaign #2. The implementation of the Administration’s ts new Medicare prescription drug benefit wasn’t as seamless as had been promised. (The Miami Herald called the implementation an “unmitigated disaster. Nice choice of words) Rather than explain the collassul screw-up, the White House is launching another PR campaign. Brilliant! That’s just what the country’s elderly need more than easy access to their medication… more spin. (Here’s a concept, abandon the plan, go back to the way it was, then start over from the beginning and put together a Medicare plan that doesn’t look and sound as if it were put together at an Amway rally)

Pat Roberts— (sorry) Ray Nagin apologizes. New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin apologized today for being “insensitive” when he expressed his desire to see the city return to its majority-Black status and for saying God had sent Hurricane Katrina to punish America. Apparently Mayor Nagin has been taking lessons from Pat “What-can-I-say-next-to-make-me-look-&-sound-like-an-absolute-idiot” Robertson. Everyone repeat after me; ‘Don’t make God has smited comments’, ‘Don’t make God has smited comments’, ‘Don’t make God has smited comments’. Say that 50 times a day for a week, and maybe it will get through some people’s thickheads.

Roberts questions McCain-Feingold. SCOTUS Chief Justice John Roberts expressed doubt this past week about legal restrictions put upon political ads by outside groups under the McCain-Feingold campaign finance law. At issue is a stipulation that bans the use of corporate or union money for ads that identify federal candidates two months before a general election. If Roberts votes against the restriction in question and if O'Connor is off the bench by the time the court issues its new ruling, which may set-up the possibility of a 4 - 4 deadlock… a deadlock that would be broken by a new justice. It starts.

Take ‘em as you will…


Jeff D said...

What's it going to take to stop this administration? Just last night (while also not watching TV since it's all lousy), my phone rang and it was a pre-recorded telemarketing questioner wanting to know if Jeb Bush was a good candidate for President in 2008. I actually had to answer "NO" about 3 times before it took my answer. SCARY!

Kemp said...


Sorry, had to be done. That is a scary thought Jeff, "President" Jeb Bush. At least Neil has dropped off the earth, so we don't have to worry about him.

But the scarier thing? That he is not the WORST possibility from the GOP.

therese said...

i am slowly coming down from the glorious high of having the exquisite pleasure of noam chomsky's and about 2,ooo other irish students...we need people like him and sites like for tv - its nearly midnight here and i was just watching a documentary on toni blair's early days at oxford. did you know the man used to impersonate rod stewart, publicly as opposed to quietly somewhere like his bedroom....and...there are photo's. last year he reminisced at length about how he was never quite sure of how his rock-star dreams were scuppered. he was being entirely serious. where do you stand on the npt and iran? anyway, cheers mate, have a good one!