#navbar-iframe{opacity:0.0;filter:alpha(Opacity=0)} #navbar-iframe:hover{opacity:1.0;filter:alpha(Opacity=100, FinishedOpacity=100)} Ed's Daily Rant: 03/01/2003 - 04/01/2003

Because face it.
I'm right, and you're wrong.

Sunday, March 30, 2003

Man Charlie Daniles is a complete and utter moron. THis thing doesn't even resemble rational thought. Still. It's entertaining.

An Open Letter To The Hollywood Bunch

Ok let’s just say for a moment you bunch of pampered, overpaid,
unrealistic children had your way and the U.S.A. didn’t go into Iraq.

Let’s say that you really get your way and we destroy all our nuclear
weapons and stick daisies in our gun barrels and sit around with some
white wine and cheese and pat ourselves on the back, so proud of what
we’ve done for world peace.

See what I mean? Which of the "hollywood bunch" is advocating this? None. But by creating this fantasy hypothesis, it makes it easier for him to knock it down. If he had to actually debate the true motivations of some of the anti-war movement, he wouldn't last 5 seconds.

I thought this was well written, so I'm going to post it in its entirety.

When Democracy Failed in Nazi Germany: The Warning of History
By: Thom Hartmann

The 70th anniversary wasn't noticed in the United States, and was
barely reported in the corporate media. But the Germans remembered
well that fateful day seventy years ago - February 27, 1933. They
commemorated the anniversary by joining in demonstrations for peace
that mobilized citizens all across the world.

It started when the government, in the midst of a worldwide economic
crisis, received reports of an imminent terrorist attack. A foreign
ideologue had launched feeble attacks on a few famous buildings, but
the media largely ignored his relatively small efforts. The
intelligence services knew, however, that the odds were he would
eventually succeed. (Historians are still arguing whether or not
rogue elements in the intelligence service helped the terrorist; the
most recent research implies they did not.)

But the warnings of investigators were ignored at the highest
in part because the government was distracted; the man who claimed
be the nation's leader had not been elected by a majority vote and
the majority of citizens claimed he had no right to the powers he
coveted. He was a simpleton, some said, a cartoon character of a man
who saw things in black-and-white terms and didn't have the
to understand the subtleties of running a nation in a complex and
internationalist world. His coarse use of language - reflecting his
political roots in a southernmost state - and his simplistic and
often-inflammatory nationalistic rhetoric offended the aristocrats,
foreign leaders, and the well-educated elite in the government and
media. And, as a young man, he'd joined a secret society with an
occult-sounding name and bizarre initiation rituals that involved
skulls and human bones.

Nonetheless, he knew the terrorist was going to strike (although he
didn't know where or when), and he had already considered his
response. When an aide brought him word that the nation's most
prestigious building was ablaze, he verified it was the terrorist
had struck and then rushed to the scene and called a press

"You are now witnessing the beginning of a great epoch in history,"
he proclaimed, standing in front of the burned-out building,
surrounded by national media. "This fire," he said, his voice
trembling with emotion, "is the beginning." He used the occasion -
sign from God," he called it - to declare an all-out war on
and its ideological sponsors, a people, he said, who traced their
origins to the Middle East and found motivation for their evil deeds
in their religion.

Two weeks later, the first detention center for terrorists was built
in Oranianberg to hold the first suspected allies of the infamous
terrorist. In a national outburst of patriotism, the leader's flag
was everywhere, even printed large in newspapers suitable for window

Within four weeks of the terrorist attack, the nation's now-popular
leader had pushed through legislation - in the name of combating
terrorism and fighting the philosophy he said spawned it - that
suspended constitutional guarantees of free speech, privacy, and
habeas corpus. Police could now intercept mail and wiretap phones;
suspected terrorists could be imprisoned without specific charges
without access to their lawyers; police could sneak into people's
homes without warrants if the cases involved terrorism.

To get his patriotic "Decree on the Protection of People and State"
passed over the objections of concerned legislators and civil
libertarians, he agreed to put a 4-year sunset provision on it: if
the national emergency provoked by the terrorist attack was over by
then, the freedoms and rights would be returned to the people, and
the police agencies would be re-restrained. Legislators would later
say they hadn't had time to read the bill before voting on it.

Immediately after passage of the anti-terrorism act, his federal
police agencies stepped up their program of arresting suspicious
persons and holding them without access to lawyers or courts. In the
first year only a few hundred were interred, and those who objected
were largely ignored by the mainstream press, which was afraid to
offend and thus lose access to a leader with such high popularity
ratings. Citizens who protested the leader in public - and there
many - quickly found themselves confronting the newly empowered
police's batons, gas, and jail cells, or fenced off in protest zones
safely out of earshot of the leader's public speeches. (In the
meantime, he was taking almost daily lessons in public speaking,
learning to control his tonality, gestures, and facial expressions.
He became a very competent orator.)

Within the first months after that terrorist attack, at the
suggestion of a political advisor, he brought a formerly obscure
into common usage. He wanted to stir a "racial pride" among his
countrymen, so, instead of referring to the nation by its name, he
began to refer to it as "The Homeland," a phrase publicly promoted
the introduction to a 1934 speech recorded in Leni Riefenstahl's
famous propaganda movie "Triumph Of The Will." As hoped, people's
hearts swelled with pride, and the beginning of an us-versus-them
mentality was sewn. Our land was "the" homeland, citizens thought:
all others were simply foreign lands. We are the "true people," he
suggested, the only ones worthy of our nation's concern; if bombs
fall on others, or human rights are violated in other nations and it
makes our lives better, it's of little concern to us.

Playing on this new nationalism, and exploiting a disagreement with
the French over his increasing militarism, he argued that any
international body that didn't act first and foremost in the best
interest of his own nation was neither relevant nor useful. He thus
withdrew his country from the League Of Nations in October, 1933,
then negotiated a separate naval armaments agreement with Anthony
Eden of The United Kingdom to create a worldwide military ruling

His propaganda minister orchestrated a campaign to ensure the people
that he was a deeply religious man and that his motivations were
rooted in Christianity. He even proclaimed the need for a revival of
the Christian faith across his nation, what he called a "New
Christianity." Every man in his rapidly growing army wore a belt
buckle that declared "Gott Mit Uns" - God Is With Us - and most of
them fervently believed it was true.

Within a year of the terrorist attack, the nation's leader
that the various local police and federal agencies around the nation
were lacking the clear communication and overall coordinated
administration necessary to deal with the terrorist threat facing
nation, particularly those citizens who were of Middle Eastern
ancestry and thus probably terrorist and communist sympathizers, and
various troublesome "intellectuals" and "liberals." He proposed a
single new national agency to protect the security of the homeland,
consolidating the actions of dozens of previously independent
border, and investigative agencies under a single leader.

He appointed one of his most trusted associates to be leader of this
new agency, the Central Security Office for the homeland, and gave
a role in the government equal to the other major departments.

His assistant who dealt with the press noted that, since the
terrorist attack, "Radio and press are at out disposal." Those
questioning the legitimacy of their nation's leader, or raising
questions about his checkered past, had by now faded from the
public's recollection as his central security office began
advertising a program encouraging people to phone in tips about
suspicious neighbors. This program was so successful that the names
of some of the people "denounced" were soon being broadcast on radio
stations. Those denounced often included opposition politicians and
celebrities who dared speak out - a favorite target of his regime
the media he now controlled through intimidation and ownership by
corporate allies.

To consolidate his power, he concluded that government alone wasn't
enough. He reached out to industry and forged an alliance, bringing
former executives of the nation's largest corporations into high
government positions. A flood of government money poured into
corporate coffers to fight the war against the Middle Eastern
ancestry terrorists lurking within the homeland, and to prepare for
wars overseas. He encouraged large corporations friendly to him to
acquire media outlets and other industrial concerns across the
nation, particularly those previously owned by suspicious people of
Middle Eastern ancestry. He built powerful alliances with industry;
one corporate ally got the lucrative contract worth millions to
the first large-scale detention center for enemies of the state.
more would follow. Industry flourished.

But after an interval of peace following the terrorist attack,
of dissent again arose within and without the government. Students
had started an active program opposing him (later known as the White
Rose Society), and leaders of nearby nations were speaking out
against his bellicose rhetoric. He needed a diversion, something to
direct people away from the corporate cronyism being exposed in his
own government, questions of his possibly illegitimate rise to
and the oft-voiced concerns of civil libertarians about the people
being held in detention without due process or access to attorneys

With his number two man - a master at manipulating the media - he
began a campaign to convince the people of the nation that a small,
limited war was necessary. Another nation was harboring many of the
suspicious Middle Eastern people, and even though its connection
the terrorist who had set afire the nation's most important building
was tenuous at best, it held resources their nation badly needed if
they were to have room to live and maintain their prosperity. He
called a press conference and publicly delivered an ultimatum to the
leader of the other nation, provoking an international uproar. He
claimed the right to strike preemptively in self-defense, and
across Europe - at first - denounced him for it, pointing out that
was a doctrine only claimed in the past by nations seeking worldwide
empire, like Caesar's Rome or Alexander's Greece.

It took a few months, and intense international debate and lobbying
with European nations, but, after he personally met with the leader
of the United Kingdom, finally a deal was struck. After the military
action began, Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain told the nervous
British people that giving in to this leader's new first-strike
doctrine would bring "peace for our time."

Thus Hitler annexed Austria in a lightning move, riding a wave of
popular support as leaders so often do in times of war. The Austrian
government was unseated and replaced by a new leadership friendly to
Germany, and German corporations began to take over Austrian

In a speech responding to critics of the invasion, Hitler
said, "Certain foreign newspapers have said that we fell on Austria
with brutal methods. I can only say; even in death they cannot stop
lying. I have in the course of my political struggle won much love
from my people, but when I crossed the former frontier [into
there met me such a stream of love as I have never experienced. Not
as tyrants have we come, but as liberators."

To deal with those who dissented from his policies, at the advice of
his politically savvy advisors, he and his handmaidens in the press
began a campaign to equate him and his policies with patriotism and
the nation itself. National unity was essential, they said, to
that the terrorists or their sponsors didn't think they'd succeeded
in splitting the nation or weakening its will. In times of war, they
said, there could be only "one people, one nation, and one commander-
in-chief" ("Ein Volk, ein Reich, ein Fuhrer"), and so his advocates
in the media began a nationwide campaign charging that critics of
policies were attacking the nation itself. Those questioning him
labeled "anti-German" or "not good Germans," and it was suggested
they were aiding the enemies of the state by failing in the
necessity of supporting the nation's valiant men in uniform. It was
one of his most effective ways to stifle dissent and pit wage-
people (from whom most of the army came) against the "intellectuals
and liberals" who were critical of his policies.

Nonetheless, once the "small war" annexation of Austria was
successfully and quickly completed, and peace returned, voices of
opposition were again raised in the Homeland. The almost-daily
release of news bulletins about the dangers of terrorist communist
cells wasn't enough to rouse the populace and totally suppress
dissent. A full-out war was necessary to divert public attention
the growing rumbles within the country about disappearing
violence against liberals, Jews, and union leaders; and the epidemic
of crony capitalism that was producing empires of wealth in the
corporate sector but threatening the middle class's way of life.

A year later, to the week, Hitler invaded Czechoslovakia; the nation
was now fully at war, and all internal dissent was suppressed in the
name of national security. It was the end of Germany's first
experiment with democracy.

As we conclude this review of history, there are a few milestones
worth remembering. February 27, 2003, was the 70th anniversary of
Dutch terrorist Marinus van der Lubbe's successful firebombing of
German Parliament (Reichstag) building, the terrorist act that
catapulted Hitler to legitimacy and reshaped the German
By the time of his successful and brief action to seize Austria, in
which almost no German blood was shed, Hitler was the most beloved
and popular leader in the history of his nation. Hailed around the
world, he was later Time magazine's "Man Of The Year."

Most Americans remember his office for the security of the homeland,
known as the Reichssicherheitshauptamt and its SchutzStaffel, simply
by its most famous agency's initials: the SS.

We also remember that the Germans developed a new form of highly
violent warfare they named "lightning war" or blitzkrieg, which,
while generating devastating civilian losses, also produced a highly
desirable "shock and awe" among the nation's leadership according to
the authors of the 1996 book "Shock And Awe" published by the
National Defense University Press.

Reflecting on that time, The American Heritage Dictionary (Houghton
Mifflin Company, 1983) left us this definition of the form of
government the German democracy had become through Hitler's close
alliance with the largest German corporations and his policy of
war as a tool to keep power: fas-cism (fbsh'iz'em) n. A system of
government that exercises a dictatorship of the extreme right,
typically through the merging of state and business leadership,
together with belligerent nationalism."

Today, as we face financial and political crises, it's useful to
remember that the ravages of the Great Depression hit Germany and
United States alike. Through the 1930s, however, Hitler and
chose very different courses to bring their nations back to power

Germany's response was to use government to empower corporations and
reward the society's richest individuals, privatize much of the
commons, stifle dissent, strip people of constitutional rights, and
create an illusion of prosperity through continual and ever-
war. America passed minimum wage laws to raise the middle class,
enforced anti-trust laws to diminish the power of corporations,
increased taxes on corporations and the wealthiest individuals,
created Social Security, and became the employer of last resort
through programs to build national infrastructure, promote the arts,
and replant forests.

To the extent that our Constitution is still intact, the choice is
again ours.

Pray for me soldier. It's your "duty". I especailly like teh propoganda line:
Pray that the President and his advisers will be strong and courageous to do what is right regardless of critics.

Even Jesus isn't exempt in Bushs propoganda war.

US soldiers in Iraq asked to pray for Bush
They may be the ones facing danger on the battlefield, but US soldiers in Iraq are being asked to pray for President George W Bush.

Thousands of marines have been given a pamphlet called "A Christian's Duty," a mini prayer book which includes a tear-out section to be mailed to the White House pledging the soldier who sends it in has been praying for Bush.

"I have committed to pray for you, your family, your staff and our troops during this time of uncertainty and tumult. May God's peace be your guide," says the pledge, according to a journalist embedded with coalition forces.

The pamphlet, produced by a group called In Touch Ministries, offers a daily prayer to be made for the US president, a born-again Christian who likes to invoke his God in speeches.

Sunday's is "Pray that the President and his advisers will seek God and his wisdom daily and not rely on their own understanding".

(If teh stories about Rumsfelds ignoring generals warnings about troop deployment are any indication, I THink that that prayers unnecesary at this point)

Monday's reads "Pray that the President and his advisers will be strong and courageous to do what is right regardless of critics".

Tuesday, March 25, 2003

It's refreshing that the administration doesn't even bother to hide their blatant corruption anymore.

Whats a bunch of deaed arines when theres money on the line.


Sunday, March 23, 2003

Geneva convention matters but only for our troops? (and no, im not defending terrorists, just pointing out yet more hypocrisy in this war)

Rumsfeld was appearing on CBS' "Face the Nation" when the network received video from the Arabic TV station Al-Jazeera, appearing to show captured Americans being interviewed.
He declared, "That's a violation of the Geneva convention" -- saying the convention prohibits countries from photographing and humiliating soldiers they capture.

Al Queda prisoners at gitmo:
A Pentagon spokesman said the decision was made because the Red Cross raised an objection, contending the images would violate international laws on the treatment of prisoners.
"The Geneva Convention prohibits humiliating, debasing photos," said Rear Adm. Craig Quigley. "We need to be cautious in case there is a legal action somewhere downstream."
But officials at the International Committee of the Red Cross in Geneva said the organization had not contacted the Pentagon about photographs taken in Afghanistan.

Photographers and camera crews from several news organizations were allowed to take pictures as the prisoners boarded the cargo plane, but the journalists had to agree not to transmit the images until military officials gave them permission.

Thursday, March 20, 2003

I've always been a huge fan of Kinsley. He has a unique talent of really cutting the opposition down to size in a cold and calculating way. He was great on Crossfire, and his latest column is absolutly devastating. It crystalizes everything that upsets me about Bush's war. Some excerpts:

If the United Nations wants to be "relevant," he said, it must do exactly as I say. In other words, in order to be relevant, it must become irrelevant. When that didn't work, he said: I am ignoring the wishes of the Security Council and violating the U.N. Charter in order to enforce a U.N. Security Council resolution. No, no, don't thank me! My pleasure!!

Putting all this together, Bush is asserting the right of the United States to attack any country that may be a threat to it in five years. And the right of the United States to evaluate that risk and respond in its sole discretion. And the right of the president to make that decision on behalf of the United States in his sole discretion. In short, the president can start a war against anyone at any time, and no one has the right to stop him. And presumably other nations and future presidents have that same right. All formal constraints on war-making are officially defunct.

In terms of the power he now claims, without significant challenge, George W. Bush is now the closest thing in a long time to dictator of the world.

Powerful stuff. Read it for yourself.

Scumbags out in force. Some of the most sleazy, disgusting smears I've seen in a while. Lets tart with what was said. Daschle basically repeating the exact truth by saying:
"I am saddened, saddened that this president failed so miserably at diplomacy that we're now forced to war. Saddened that we have to give up one life because this president couldn't create the kind of diplomatic effort that was so critical for our country."

"Any remarks that their lives in some way have been compromised by the president of the United States is irresponsible,"
Senate majority leader Bill Frist
(I agree, but as you well know Dr., he said no such thing)

"shut your mouth"
Tom delay (in french no less, isn't that cute? Telling a senator to shut up when he voices his opinion?)

"He's essentially blaming President Bush for the fact that we may be on the verge of war."
Ari Flieshcer, reigning king of the smarmy smears.

The server is getting inundated so you might not be able to get it, but apparently the live feed before Bush gave his statement last night was preceded by him being gromed by makeup artists, and mugging and goofing off in front of the camera.

check it out.

Wednesday, March 19, 2003

From Atrios. Makes you think.

The entire situation is reminiscent of the old Star Trek episode "Patterns of Force" (in which) Federation history professor John Gill becomes the drugged leader of a Nazi planet:
GILL (seen on TV at a rally): If we fulfill our own greatness,
that will all be ended.
Working together --

SPOCK: Captain, the speech follows no logical pattern.
Random sentences strung together.

MCCOY: He looks drugged,Jim,
almost in a cataleptic state.

GILL: ...reach our goal,
And we will reach that goal.
Every thought ...
directed toward a goal.
This planet ...
can become a paradise,
if we are willing to pay the price.
As each cell in the body ...
works with discipline and harmony for the good ...
of the entire being --

Tuesday, March 18, 2003

Bush then:
Q: Thank you, Mr. President. As you said, the Security Council faces a vote next week on the resolution implicitly authorizing an attack on Iraq. Will you call for a vote on that resolution even if you aren't sure you have the votes?

Bush: Yeah. Well, first, I don't think it -- it basically says that he's in defiance of 1441. That's what the resolution says. And it's hard to believe anybody saying he isn't in defiance of 1441, because 1441 said he must disarm. And yes, we'll call for a vote.

Q: No matter what?

Bush: No matter what the whip count is, we're calling for the vote. We want to see people stand up and say what their opinion is about Saddam Hussein and the utility of the United Nations Security Council. And so, you bet. It's time for people to show their cards, let the world know where they stand when it comes to Saddam.

Bush now:
In a National Security Council meeting yesterday morning, Bush finalized the decision to withdraw the resolution from consideration and prepared to deliver an address to the nation that had already been written.

Cananyone believe a word out of his mouth anymore?

Sunday, March 16, 2003

"[America] has abstained from interference in the concerns of others,
even when conflict has been for principles to which she clings, as to
the last vital drop that visits the heart.

She goes not abroad, in search of monsters to destroy. She is the
well-wisher to the freedom and independence of all. She is the
champion and vindicator only of her own.

She will commend the general cause by the countenance of her voice,
and the benignant sympathy of her example. She well knows that by
once enlisting under other banners than her own, were they even the
banners of foreign independence, she would involve herself beyond the
power of extrication, in all the wars of interest and intrigue, of
individual avarice, envy and ambition, which assume the colors and
usurp the standard of freedom. The fundamental maxims of her policy
would insensibly change from liberty to force.

She might become the dictatress of the world. She would be no longer
the ruler of her own spirit. Her glory is not dominion, but liberty."

John Quincy Adams

to the 3 people whe bother to rea this I apologize for the little self imposed hiatus. I'll be back stronger than ever this week.

Man Bush pisses me off.

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