The Lady Speaks

Poking the Bear

Oh my freakin’ Jeebus, people! I’m so pissed and annoyed and… plain freaked out, it’s not funny.

You know how we on the left always wonder just how crazy the Republicans and Bush-Cheney Corporate Headquarters are? Well, wonder no more!

The stupid is so awesome, so intense, so effin’ ridiculous, so burningly awful that it is almost beyond my ability to respond with more than “Oh my god… but… oh holy shit… sweet baby jeebus in the cow trough!!”

From the New York Times:

Poland and the United States struck a deal Thursday that will strengthen military ties and put an American missile interceptor base in Poland, a plan that has infuriated Moscow and sparked fears in Europe of a new arms race.

”We have crossed the Rubicon,” Polish Prime Minister Donald Tusk said, referring to U.S. consent to Poland’s demands after more than 18 months of negotiations.

Washington says the planned system, which is not yet operational, is needed to protect the U.S. and Europe from possible attacks by missile-armed ”rogue states” like Iran. The Kremlin, however, feels it is aimed at Russia’s missile force and warns it will worsen tensions.

Um, except Iran is two-three times as far away from Iran as it is from Russia…

Red - Poland; Blue - Russia; Fuschia - Iran.

Red - Poland; Blue - Russia; Fuschia - Iran.

but… um… just ignore that.

U.S. officials also said the timing of the deal was not meant to antagonize Russian leaders at a time when relations already are strained over the recent fighting between Russia and Georgia over the South Ossetia region.

“O hai! Sry, dudez. Srsly!

We didn’t mean to piss you off even more, right as you’re cease-firing from a little war spurred on by our idiot government telling the Georgian president we had his back… and then, um, not. But hey! Good news! Condi’s coming to make things all better… um, or maybe to buy shoes.”

[Tusk] said the deal also includes a ”mutual commitment” between the two nations to come to each other’s assistance ”in case of trouble.”

That clause appeared to be a direct reference to Russia, which has threatened to aim its nuclear-armed missiles at Poland — a former Soviet satellite — if it hosts the U.S. site.

Ummm… is anyone else having flashbacks to the 1980s and The Day After ?

Dr. Landowska: There is a rumor that they are evacuating Moscow. There are people even leaving Kansas City because of the missile base. Now I ask you: To where does one go from Kansas City? The Yukon? Tahiti? We are not talking about Hiroshima anymore. Hiroshima was… was peanuts!
Dr. Russell Oakes: What’s going on? Do you have any idea what’s going on in this world?
Dr. Landowska: Yeah. Stupidity… has a habit of getting its way.

Yep, and this misAdministration isn’t going to be happy until the whole freakin’ world is in flames.

August 15, 2008 Posted by | America, Bush, Cheney, Condoleeza Rice, Election '08, Government, Iran, Nuclear Weapons, Pentagon, Planet Earth, War, Whacko Nut Cases, White House, WMDs, World Peace | 3 Comments

What I Learned from Petraeus

In Part II of the Dog and Pony show held at the House Armed Services Committee, we learned that freedom and democracy are pretty hard to force down the throats of an occupied people.

September 2007 – Violence is up; we must stay.

April 2008 – Violence was down, but it seems to be going up again; we must stay.

September 2007 – There have been improvements, but we must stay to see the surge through.

April 2008 – The surge brought improvements, and some troops have left, but we must “pause” the draw-downs – which will leave more troops in Iraq than there was before the surge – and stay to see it through.

Hmmm…. Anyone else reminded of the theme song from the Shari Lewis/Lambchop show?

This is the song that never ends
Yes, it goes on and on, my friends
Some people started singing it
Not knowing what it was
And they’ll continue singing it
Forever just because
This the song that never ends …”

I also learned that “victory” in Iraq will consist of a country “at peace with itself and its neighbors”, able to defend itself, with a “reasonably representative” government that can care for its citizens.

Yeah, mull that over for a bit. Not one country in the Middle East could meet those standards, and neither could the US. Canada, maybe.

So the shorter Petraeus: We’re never leaving.

In other news: El Pollo Loco will announce a reduction in combat tour lengths, to twelve months.

This change will not go into effect until August, and will not apply to troops currently serving in Iraq and Afghanistan.

April 10, 2008 Posted by | Bush, Congress, Iraq, Middle East, Pentagon, US Military, War, White House, World Peace | 1 Comment

Counting the Cost

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December 31, 2007 Posted by | America, Bush, Cheney, Condoleeza Rice, Congress, Government, Iraq, Media, Middle East, Pentagon, Rumsfeld, US Military, Veterans, War, White House | 20 Comments

Friday Anti-War Song

In a World Gone Mad
— Beastie Boys

In a world gone mad it’s hard to think right
So much violence hate and spite
Murder going on all day and night
Due time we fight the non-violent fight

Mirrors, smokescreens and lies
It’s not the politicians but their actions I despise
You and Saddam should kick it like back in the day
With the cocaine and Courvoisier
But you build more bombs as you get more bold
As your mid-life crisis war unfolds
All you want to do is take control
Now put that axis of evil bullshit on hold
Citizen rule number 2080
Politicians are shady
So people watch your back ’cause I think they smoke crack
I don’t doubt it look at how they act

In a world gone mad it’s hard to think right
So much violence hate and spite
Murder going on all day and night
Due time we fight the non-violent fight

First the ‘War On Terror’ now war on Iraq
We’re reaching a point where we can’t turn back
Let’s lose the guns and let’s lose the bombs
And stop the corporate contributions that they’re built upon
Well I’ll be sleeping on your speeches til I start to snore
‘Cause I won’t carry guns for an oil war
As-Salamu alaikum, wa alaikum assalam
Peace to the Middle East peace to Islam
Now don’t get us wrong ’cause we love America
But that’s no reason to get hysterica
They’re layin’ on the syrup thick
We ain’t waffles we ain’t havin’ it

In a world gone mad it’s hard to think right
So much violence hate and spite
Murder going on all day and night
Due time we fight the non-violent fight

Now how many people must get killed?
For oil families pockets to get filled?
How many oil families get killed?
Not a damn one so what’s the deal?

It’s time to lead the way and de-escalate
Lose the weapons of mass destruction and the hate
Say ooh ah what’s the White House doin’?
Oh no! Say, what in tarnation have they got brewing??!!!!???!!
Well I’m not pro Bush and I’m not pro Saddam
We need these fools to remain calm
George Bush you’re looking like Zoolander
Trying to play tough for the camera
What am I on crazy pills? We’ve got to stop it
Get your hand out my grandma’s pocket
We need health care more than going to war
You think it’s democracy they’re fighting for?

In a world gone mad it’s hard to think right
So much violence hate and spite
Murder going on all day and night
Due time we fight the non-violent fight

December 14, 2007 Posted by | America, Bush, Cheney, Children, Civil War, Government, Human Rights, Iraq, Middle East, Military, Music, Pentagon, Politics, Protest, Republicans, War, White House, World Peace | Leave a comment

Friday Anti-War Song — Chris Chandler Edition

This is the Chris Chander/David Roe song I mentioned in a comment on the previous post. Imagine my joy when I found it on YouTube, and although the video is one created by the uploader, not the one Chris uses, it’s still fantastic.

I’ve seen Chris and DR live twice now, and each time was fabulous. They played both times at this little hole-in-the-wall coffeehouse that seats maybe 30…40 if a few people double up. The crowds were huge both times, with people standing 4 deep outside just to see and hear the show.

Although Dave isn’t touring with Chris anymore, definitely take the time to catch the show if Chris comes to your area! It’s a fantastic combo of music, spoken word, and visual images.

Somethings in the Air/But It’s Not on the Airwaves, from American Storyteller Volumes 1 & 2:

Visit Chris’ website.

December 7, 2007 Posted by | America, Bush, Music, Pentagon, Politics, Protest, US Military, War, White House, World Peace | Leave a comment

Walter Cronkite: Our Troops Must Leave Iraq

Nearly forty years ago, my mother was a senior in high school, our country was mired in an unwinnable war, and Walter Cronkite had returned returned from a trip to Vietnam. At the end of his February 27, 1968 broadcast, he made editorial statement calling for the return of American troops.

Part of what he had to say then:

“… For it seems now more certain than ever that the bloody experience of Vietnam is to end in a stalemate. This summer’s almost certain standoff will either end in real give-and-take negotiations or terrible escalation;

[snip]

To say that we are closer to victory today is to believe, in the face of the evidence, the optimists who have been wrong in the past. To suggest we are on the edge of defeat is to yield to unreasonable pessimism. To say that we are mired in stalemate seems the only realistic, yet unsatisfactory, conclusion. Continue reading

December 5, 2007 Posted by | America, Bush, Cheney, Civil War, Government, Iraq, Middle East, Military, Pentagon, Politics, Protest, Television, US Military, Vietnam, War, White House | 2 Comments

Friday Anti-War Song

Blowin’ in the Wind
— Bob Dylan

How many roads must a man walk down
Before you call him a man?
Yes, ‘n’ how many seas must a white dove sail
Before she sleeps in the sand?
Yes, ‘n’ how many times must the cannon balls fly
Before they’re forever banned?
The answer, my friend, is blowin’ in the wind,
The answer is blowin’ in the wind.

How many times must a man look up
Before he can see the sky?
Yes, ‘n’ how many ears must one man have
Before he can hear people cry?
Yes, ‘n’ how many deaths will it take till he knows
That too many people have died?
The answer, my friend, is blowin’ in the wind,
The answer is blowin’ in the wind.

How many years can a mountain exist
Before it’s washed to the sea?
Yes, ‘n’ how many years can some people exist
Before they’re allowed to be free?
Yes, ‘n’ how many times can a man turn his head,
Pretending he just doesn’t see?
The answer, my friend, is blowin’ in the wind,
The answer is blowin’ in the wind.

November 9, 2007 Posted by | America, Government, Iraq, Middle East, Music, Pentagon, Protest, US Military, War, White House, World Peace | 1 Comment

We Are Doomed

The Kyl-Lieberman amendment to the Defense Authorization Bill passed 76-22.

Why is this bad?

From ThinkProgress:

The legislation accuses Iran of fighting “a proxy war against the Iraqi state and coalition forces in Iraq” and threatens to “combat, contain and [stop]” Iran. The right wing has quickly latched onto the amendment, claiming it “unflinchingly…calls on America to win” against Iran.

[snip]

(3) that it should be the policy of the United States to combat, contain, and [stop] the violent activities and destabilizing influence inside Iraq of the Government of the Islamic Republic of Iran, its foreign facilitators such as Lebanese Hezbollah, and its indigenous Iraqi proxies;

(4) to support the prudent and calibrated use of all instruments of United States national power in Iraq, including diplomatic, economic, intelligence, and military instruments, in support of the policy described in paragraph (3) with respect to the Government of the Islamic Republic of Iran and its proxies. [emphasis TP]

Dear sweet gods and goddesses!

Senator Jim Webb called the amendment “Dick Cheney’s fondest pipe dream,” also saying: “At best, it’s a deliberate attempt to divert attention from a failed diplomatic policy,” said Webb. “At worst, it could be read as a backdoor method of gaining Congressional validation for military action, without one hearing and without serious debate.

Why not just pass a “Let’s Bomb Iran and Other Places That Piss Us Off” resolution?

Who were the 29 Democratic senators stupid enough to vote for this?

Akaka (D-HI)
Baucus (D-MT)
Bayh (D-IN)
Cardin (D-MD)
Carper (D-DE)
Casey (D-PA)
Clinton (D-NY)
Conrad (D-ND)
Dorgan (D-ND)
Durbin (D-IL)
Feinstein (D-CA)
Johnson (D-SD)
Kohl (D-WI)
Landrieu (D-LA)
Lautenberg (D-NJ)
Levin (D-MI)
Menendez (D-NJ)
Mikulski (D-MD)
Murray (D-WA)
Nelson (D-FL)
Nelson (D-NE)
Pryor (D-AR)
Reed (D-RI)
Reid (D-NV)
Rockefeller (D-WV)
Salazar (D-CO)
Schumer (D-NY)
Stabenow (D-MI)
Whitehouse (D-RI)

Obama and McCain decided not to bother voting.

– – –

Shall we start a 50-50 pool now? $5 donation per guess.

On what day will El Chimperor announce to the American people that he’s ordered the US military (any branch) to strike targets in Iran?

Closest to the right date and year wins 50% of the pot. The other 50% will be donated to the United Nations Children’s Fund.

September 26, 2007 Posted by | America, Bush, Congress, Government, Homeland Security, Iran, Lieberman, Middle East, Pentagon, Politics, US Military, War, White House | 6 Comments

Protest Today, Wherever You Are

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Sign The Pledge
Join the Iraq Moratorium

September 21, 2007 Posted by | America, Blogs, Government, Iraq, Middle East, Pentagon, Protest, War, White House | Leave a comment

U.S. Air Force Says, “Oops!”

C’mon now. Is anyone actually buying the lame story being put out by the Air Force and the DoD about a B-52 carrying twelve Advanced Cruise Missiles, six of which were loaded with nuclear warheads? All of this unbeknownst to anyone, including the B-52’s flight crew, until it landed at Barksdale AFB?

Even I, with my (thankfully brief) experience as an Air Force dependent in the late 1980’s, can tell you there is no way in hell these nukes were ‘accidentally’ anything. Cripes, we had to sign things in triplicate just to see a doc at the base hospital! (Alright, I’m exaggerating a little there, but really the USAF doesn’t just let its nukes go wandering around for any airman to pick up and attach to a plane.

Let’s put it this way – for the 25% still supporting Bush – do you really believe the ground crew just grabbed these things out of the wrong drawer, like you’d grab two different socks?

I would guess there are layers and layers of command signatures – in triplicate – required just to look at the things, so I can’t even begin to imagine how many would be needed for the following to take place: removing them from their super-secret hidey-hole, and then loading them onto a B-52, and then allowing it to take off and then allowing it to fly for three hours over ‘America’s breadbasket’?!

It defies imagination to believe this was an ‘accident’.

Which means we have only two question remaining: What is/was the purpose behind it, and – most important – where did the orders come from?

The who, I believe, comes down to Bush, Cheney, or SecDef Gates. No one on that base, not even the base commander, is going to accept any less of an authority on the signature line when it comes to nuclear warheads. And no ground crew is loading them without orders from on high.

The why? Either we’re sending a message to Iran – and a pretty mixed one, at that: Hey, we’ve got nukes and we’re so crazy we’ll just fly ’em over our own country! Imagine what we’ll do to yours! (Is it the military version of ‘act-batshit-insane-so-the-mugger-will-go-away’?)

Or, our military is so screwed up that a) the Air Force can lose six nuclear warheads and not know it until they show up in Louisiana, or b) the Christianist Rapturists have taken over and are hurrying up the End Times, or c) all of the above.

Gee, I feel so much safer now.

Update – 9:50pm:

Oh, doesn’t this make you feel all warm and fuzzy? (And not the happy kind of warm and fuzzy, either. I mean the glowing-in-the-dark kind.) [all emphasis mine]

The risk of flying accidents, however, led the United States to abandon all nuclear-armed bomber flights in 1968, according to Hans Kristensen, a nuclear weapons expert with the Federation of American Scientists.

[snip]

Several accidents occurred, including a crash in Spain in 1966 and then a crash at an air base in Greenland on Jan. 21, 1968.  The plane’s nuclear weapons did not explode in the latter incident, but their radioactive fissile material was dispersed at the crash site.

Defense Secretary Robert McNamara that day ordered the grounding of all nuclear-armed aircraft, a policy that has continued for four decades.  Instead of flying with nuclear weapons, armed bombers were kept on alert on the ground with flight crews nearby to enable the planes to take off within minutes, if necessary.

In 1991, President George H.W. Bush reduced the bomber alert status further by ordering nuclear weapons to be removed from the aircraft and kept in nearby storage facilities.

[snip]

The incident reflects a major lapse in the command and control systems that ensure the proper handling of U.S. nuclear weapons, according to Kristensen.

“It’s not a matter of an air crew picking the wrong one” from a storage site, he said.  Moving nuclear weapons requires multiple authorizations from high-ranking Pentagon officials.

Handling nuclear weapons has always received unusually strict Pentagon guidance, agreed nuclear analyst Robert Norris, of the Natural Resources Defense Council.

“Everyone from day one has assumed a special responsibility when it comes to nuclear weapons,” he said.  “Because they’re special, the Defense Department has required a special set of procedures and training and has made special efforts to identify responsible people to handle these weapons.”

In other words, like I said, this wasn’t just a fuck-up; this was a chain of fuck-ups.

September 6, 2007 Posted by | America, Bush, Cheney, Government, Nuclear Weapons, Pentagon, Politics, US Military, White House, WMDs | Leave a comment