Thursday, April 06, 2006

Random Political Thoughts for a Thursday Morning

A day late, but not a dollar short. It’s Random Political Thoughts for a Wednesday Afternoon – Thursday morning edition

No pageantry, no ‘Pomp & Circumstance’, let’s just ‘Get it on’

If I had a hammer. By now everyone reading this blog knows that former Majority leader Tom “Bug Killer” DeLay has resigned his congressional seat and dropped out of his re-election race (and if you don’t, might I suggest turning off “Wife Swap” once in a while and watching some news…) Rumors and innuendos are swirling around Washington that he was ‘asked’ to step down by GOP leaders, or that the guilty plea of his former Deputy Chief of Staff Tony C. Rudy, played a part. DeLay maintains he did it for the good of the party and the state of Texas. What happens next is anyone’s guess, but expect a spin-cycle from both the Democrats and Republicans saying their own views of his “slithering away…” (I say good riddance to bad rubbish, though I do admit it would have been enjoyable to watch him lose in November. His political career is far from over as I am sure he will become a lobbysit of some sort... mark my words; you haven't seen the last of Tom DeLay)

Bad. The Deputy press secretary of the Department of Homeland Security was arrested yesterday. Brian Doyle faces charges that he used the Internet to seduce a 14-year old girl who turned out to be an undercover Florida sheriff's detective. Ok, the act of soliciting a young-girl for sex is disgusting in itself, but you also have to look at the incredible stupidity of Doyle. What stupidity was that? The fact that he told the detective who he was, that he worked for DHS and gave out the phone numbers to his DHS office and to his government-issued cellphone. (The man obviously has a problem, and stupidity is the least of his worries now, but you have to question his mental capacity if he openly gave his name, title, employer and phone numbers to someone)

Push it. This week’s gratuitous op-ed piece push comes from Molly Ivins. Click HERE to read it. Runner-up comes from the Washington Post op-ed columnist Stephen Barr, click HERE to read that one. (Both are good reads... take a moment to check them out)

Stormy weather. Like the GOP did to the Democrats in 1994, the Democrats may do to them this November as some political pundits think that the GOP may be in the “path of a political hurricane” Three of the five key ingredients that helped turn the tide in 1994 are in place; broad public dissatisfaction with the direction of the country, dismal approval ratings for the current president, and scandal in Congress. Having said that, there is a key difference as well; the amount of House districts that remain competitive is smaller than ’94 and by this time then. (With the news that the Dems are starting to wake up and smell the dissatisfaction with the current political landscape, they are gearing up to craft a single unifying message and promise… let’s just hope it can do what has to be done. Let's light the fires and kick the tires and take care of business)

Burning down the house. The U.S. economy is more dependent on housing than it has been in a half-century, as the sector fuels consumer spending and has accounted for nearly three-quarters of the nation's job growth in the past five years. As a result, economists worry that the housing slowdown that began late last year could hurt the broader economy more than past real estate downturns, although other parts of the economy appear to be accelerating. (Wow, seems to me I've heard this argument before... and I have, from my esteemed colleague Scott who has written about this in the past. If only people would listen to us more...)

Like a rolling stone. People keep rolling out the door at Katherine Harris’ senate campaign as new staffers were to be introduced yesterday. This was to replace the plethora of staffers who left over this past weekend (a top adviser, campaign manager and communications director)… and those that left the week before that… and the week before that… and the week bef –, well, you get the idea. She also had to replace the campaign’s national fund-raising director, field operations coordinator and media consultant. (This campaign is a train wreck… and something needs to be done about it. While it was enjoyable at first, now it’s becoming painful, sad and pathetic to watch. Please GOP… put the campaign out of its misery…)

Get back. Is this opposite land?? The Democrats are starting (albeit slowly) to get their act together while the Republicans remain divided and irresolute. Time magazine has a terrific article online this week. Check it out HERE. (We at TBWA (and many other liberal sites) have been saying for quite a while that the time was right for the Democrats to gather their stuff, get their crap together, formulate a single agenda and message, get behind it and steamroll the GOP into submission in November and in 2008. Looks as though they are starting to listen. Keep it going…)

Money, that’s what I want. “President” Bush has vowed to transform Iraq into a “beacon of democracy” in the Middle East. But the problem is that the administration has been cutting funding for all the primary organizations that are trying to craft this vision by building democratic institutions with security costs receiving an large chunk of funds as democracy and infrastructure goals are cut. (Once again, what Bush says and what he does are two totally different things and prompts me to ask this question: when the hell are more people going to see this man for what he truly is?? A wishy-washy, crony-loving dim bulb who can’t decide what he wants to be... a President... an avenger of his daddy's failure... or a puppet)

Rice, rice baby. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice had strong words for Congress about altering the landmark civilian nuclear deal with India, saying any change of the plan could destroy a new partnership that the country is building with the country. (As I’ve said here before, I am sure any nuclear deal with India will NEVER come back to bite us on the ass. It never has before has it? … I mean look at Iraq, oh, wait… never mind…)

The warrior. It seems that the communication in the Bush administration is as effective as ever... and the infighting continues to grow. Defense Secretary Donald “I brake for WMD’s” Rumsfeld doesn’t know what the hell Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice is talking about. Last week Rice said that the US had made thousands of “tactical errors” in the war in Iraq (a statement she later try to cover up by saying she was speaking figuratively) In a radio interview, Rummy said calling military tactic changes during the war “errors” reflects a lack of warfare understanding. (Ouch… sounds like Rummy is calling you out Condi, you gonna let him get away with that??? I wouldn’t)

Hot, hot, hot. Scientists that have done climate research for the feds have stated that the Bush administration has made it hard for them to speak openly about global warming. Due to this, many researchers fear that Americans are not getting the full story on how the climate is changing. Employees for both NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration) and the USGS (U.S. Geological Survey) have said in interviews this past year that Bush administration officials have reprimanded them for speaking on policy questions, have removed global warming references on reports and news releases and sometimes urged them to stop speaking to the media altogether, a point that’s been written about on TBWA before. (Once again, we are presented with an example of this administration putting pressure on it’s own people in order to not have a concept that Republican’s strongly disagree with see the light of day. How much longer can we allow this to continue?)

Break it down again. For the second time in two weeks, a former US general has called for the resignation of Donald Rumsfeld. Why? Serious mistakes made in the war in Iraq (color me unsurprised). Gen. Anthony C. Zinni, a former leader of the US Central Command stated (on last Sunday’s ‘Meet the Press’) that Rumsfeld (et al) need to be held accountable for all the tactical mistakes in Iraq. When pressed about who in the administration should resign, the General said, “Secretary of Defense, to begin with.” General Zinni went on to say that other responsible parties for the war efforts should also resign. When the military starts questioning your military strategies and tactics… it’s time to worry. Never mind that others have been saying the exact same thing for a very, very long time.

Tax man. We applauded a federal judge for pushing for more explanation on this from the FEC last week. Now the House has approved campaign finance legislation that will benefit Republicans (big shock, right?) by capping “527” committees. The bill passed 218 to 209 in a virtual party-line vote. To learn more about 527 committees, click HERE.

Take them as you will…

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

is there any way to speed up the time clock? teehee seriously, as a senior of advanced age, this is the first time that I have been fearful of presidential decisions. This man is so prideful and uninformed of the problems that his bungling arrogance has produced, it is very emotionally draining on an ordinary citizen