Monday, January 08, 2007

The Week Ahead

A handy-dandy guide of some things to pay attention to as this week gets underway…

  • The biggest news of the upcoming week is that on Wednesday night, “President” Bush is expected to announce his new and improved plans for Iraq which most people are saying is a surge (read: ESCALATION) of troops. While thinking about that frightening scenario, think about this (via Think Progress): On June 28, 2005 — a mere 18 months ago — Dubya said that sending more troops to Iraq wouldundermine our strategy of encouraging Iraqis to take the leadand would also suggest to the Iraqi people that we “intend to stay forever.” As of Friday, the new plan was being dubbed “A New Way Forward.” Interesting… isn’t it?)
  • The day after Bush’s speech on his new plans for Iraq, Secretary of State Condoleezza “Rhymes with” Rice will go before the House Foreign Affairs Committee so she can defend her boyfriend’s boss’s “war-strategy shift.” Besides Condi, newly-minted Defense Secretary Robert Gates and Joint Chiefs of Staff chairman General Peter Pace will be busy defending the change before the House Armed Service Committee. (Can we say “spin” boys and girls?)
  • Pay attention to how the new Democratically-controlled Congress reacts to Bush’s new Iraq strategy. This past Sunday on CBS' “Face the Nation,” House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) said Democrats will not give President Bush a blank check for Iraq, declaring: “The American people and the Congress support those troops. We will not abandon them. But if the president wants to add to this mission, he is going to have to justify it. And this is new for him because up until now the Republican Congress has given him a blank check with no oversight, no standards, no conditions.”
  • Keep an eye on science in the days weeks months years ahead. Why? Well, it seems the failure of the 109th “Do-Nothing” Congress to pass new budgets for the fiscal year has engineered “a crisis in science financing” that is so bad that is threatens to close major facilities, delay new projects and leave thousands of government scientists out of work with, possible, disasterous consequences. (Well sure, it plays right into the gop’s hands of ignoring the plight of Global Warming and the environment… so it’s natural that they ignored science. Remember; to them, science is a four-letter word.)
  • Watch out as one of the cornerstones of Bush’s domestic agenda turns five-years old this week (seriously though… it’s really his only domestic agenda that got off the ground… but let’s not nitpick…). Which one you ask? It’s the plan that, at its simplest, aimed to improve the basic skills of the nation's public school children, in particular poor and minority students... that’s right; No Child Left Behind turns 5 years old today. And it’s future is as unclear as the future of the students it was supposed to have helped as Congress prepares to reauthorize it there is a group of 100 education, religion and civil rights leaders that are going to be calling for “major changes" to the plan…so stay tuned.
  • Keep an ever-vigilant eye on Sen. Joe Lieberman (I-CT) because I don't think he can be trusted...
  • Keep your ears open year-round, as another year filled with Bushisms gets under way. Curious as to what the top Bushism for 2006 was? Wonder no more. A Web site that analyzes and catalogues language usage has issued its Top Bushisms for 2006, the Top Five are:

5. "The only way we can win is to leave before the job is done." Nov. 24 (Greely, Colo.)

4. "I've got an ek-a-lec-tic reading list." August 29 interview with NBC's Brian Williams.

3. "It was not always certain that the U.S. and America would have a close relationship." June 29.

2. "I use The Google," in reference to the popular search engine. October 24th. Interview with Maria Bartiromo of CNBC.

And the number one Bushism for 2006 is:

1. "I'm the Decider." "I'm the decider, and I decide what is best. And what's best is for Don Rumsfeld to remain as the secretary of defense." April 18, in response to a question from CNN's Ed Henry.

I don’t really think anything more needs to be said… have a good week everyone and remember:

Take ‘em as you will…

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