Wednesday, March 14, 2007


While I am a political junky, admittedly, I do have to wonder why we are campaigning for an election that is still a full 18 plus months away. Part of it I guess is because there is no obvious incumbent out there so the field is wide open. Of course that wide open has strings attached – it is wide open to the very rich and/or the extremely good fund raiser/party loyalist and/or those with lots of name recognition (think Hollywood actor). If you do not fit those criteria then I am afraid your chances of election are pretty well in the dumper. The other and perhaps more compelling reason I think is that people are so fed up with the current administration and the direction they are taking the country, that the potential for new leadership is very seductive.

This last week or so has been filled with revelations that truly highlight the current crop of (nominal) conservatives’ real values. I may be incorrect here, but as I recall one of the main themes of the GOP after the Clinton years was to restore dignity, morality, values, to the government. Of course it is obvious that those terms are as defined by them not necessarily to definitions that are commonly accepted or even in the dictionary! So with that, shall we just itemize some of the most recent aberrations?

Family Values:

Fly of Newt (wish I could take credit for that but I saw it on Olbermann) admitted publicly, to of all people but Pastor Family Values himself, Reverend Dobson, that he was having an affair at the time he actively pursued the impeachment of President Clinton for a similar offense. It is notable here that this affair was with a Congressional aid… I guess he is glad it was a woman or he might be in REAL trouble and need three weeks of rehab a la Rev. Ted Haggard. Now lest we should forget that Mr. Family Values Voters Gingrich has been married three (count them – 1, 2, 3) times. And he discussed the divorce with, some say even served the papers on, his first wife while she was in the hospital recovering from cancer surgery. Ayup… gotta love the Newtie version of those values.

While we are on the subject – Rudy Giuliani is also on his third wife. One of his wives found out he was divorcing her when he announced it at a press conference. As I recall (my recollection may be a bit faulty but I think I have the essence right), his then wife got to stay in the Mayoral mansion while he – the serving mayor – had to move out. That gives me a feel for what the citizens of NY thought about it.

The point was made by one of the talking heads that the four front-runners for the Republican nomination have 9 marriages between them, and the only candidate who has been married only one time is the Mormon! The front-runners for the Democratic ticket are all married to their first and only spouse.

Mind you I am not trashing divorce here – more the difference between what is said and what is done. It’s the old do as I say (and I really wish they would all get out of my bedroom so I don’t feel it’s important to our future to know what goes on in theirs!) not as I do.


The forced resignation (read: firing) of eight U.S. Attorneys on December 7 (interesting date choice) for obviously partisan political reasons is getting deserved air play. Before proceeding I want to defuse the right wing talking point that Clinton fired 93 U.S. attorneys when he took office. They key here is he did it upon entering office, as many presidents have done when they take office – these are political appointees and a new party administration frequently cleans house by asking for the resignation of all appointees and then appoints their own people. The eight prosecutors in this case appear to have been dismissed because they did not support the administration’s desires. One in particular was pressured for not prosecuting a Democrat more vigorously at the time of the last election; another was dismissed seemingly for investigating Republican officials. Most appear to have lost their positions not because the administration was doing a house cleaning upon taking office (which would have occurred in 2005) but as retribution to those who did not carry out the political agenda. One was dismissed to make way for a buddy of the Architect (Karl Rove). And overseeing all of this is the Crony General Alberto Gonzalez – who indicated yesterday in one of the shortest press conferences on record (I don’t think anyone even got to ask a question) that some mistakes were made but he’s not resigning. Personally I think Alberto better watch out because the Shrub is on record this week as saying he has complete confidence in the attorney general… didn’t he say that about Rumsfeld right before the election?

And so it begins for the AG… I just saw an article in Newsday stating: “President Bush said Wednesday he is troubled by the Justice Department's misleading explanations to Congress of why it fired eight U.S. attorneys and expected his Attorney General to fix them.” He stands by the firing, he doesn’t stand by the fact they were discovered.

Foot in Mouth

There are just too many to go into here but the highlights include:

  1. General Peter Pace saying homosexuality is immoral and is akin to adultery – which, for those who don’t know, is reason for prosecution in the military. He later said he should have confined his comments to policy (ask don’t tell) rather than expressing his personal opinion.
  2. General Kiley (now up for retirement) who had the insensitivity to talk about jogging around base and stating that even though he lived across the street from Building 18 – he didn’t see the situation first-hand because he didn’t DO barracks inspections. And perhaps the award winning foot in mouth comment was saying the rodent and cockroach infestation was the fault of the patients for having food in their rooms… can you say “HUH?”
And so it goes . . .

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