s skippy the bush kangaroo: July 2003

skippy the bush kangaroo

Thursday, July 31, 2003

issa gonna disagree with that

thanks to the ever lovely cursor.org, we found this chart at the even lovelier ugga bugga, comparing and contrasting claims made by the man-who-would-be governor of california daryl issa, with actual facts, as reported by the latimes.

interesting stretching of the truth (but then again, he's a repubbblican, what do you expect?)
posted by skippy at 4:21 PM | 0 comments

score one for the good guys

good thing nobody was investing in john poindexter's future!

the army times reports that convicted felon and mastermind behind the terrorism stock market is slated to resign "in the next few weeks," reports the nytimes.

while defense secretary donald h. rumsfeld did not personally dismiss admiral poindexter, the defense official said, mr. rumsfeld agreed that the admiral's credibility was shot and it was time for him to go.

too bad it was just his credibility. the times continues:

the current furor centered on an initiative called policy analysis market. under the plan, traders were to be able to begin registering on friday to trade futures on developments in the middle east as of oct. 1 on a web site of the policy analysis market, which the pentagon was operating with private partners.

poindexter's stock is, apparently, going down.

posted by skippy at 3:58 PM | 0 comments

register on line to vote

reader greg reminds us that california allows voters to register on line.

and he says the fec does too.
posted by skippy at 3:50 PM | 1 comments

blogroll additions

we are pleased to add the blue bus by the lizard queen to our permanent blog roll. the lq is a lady after our own hearts, and you'll enjoy her blog immensely.

we are also adding the petition to boycott espn because of rush limbaugh to our permanent features on our sidebar, right under the dixie chicks (it's probably the closest rush has come to getting any in a long time). please take time to go sign the petition.
posted by skippy at 12:43 PM | 0 comments

freep the beard!

now! left hand side bar!
posted by skippy at 12:30 PM | 1 comments

blogging around

liberal oasis on the dlc fiasco in philly.

your heart will break at this story of a child's death in basra, from free pie.

sandwich man is taking over for the vacationing maxspeak.

talkleft gives us another example of how awol hates the veterans.

steve gilliard over on the kos compares william safire on iraq to reality. (by the way, take a look at all those down arrows on the kos's right hand side barawol poll standings.)

over on the blog for america, one dean supporter writes about how she donated her $400 tax rebate check to dr. dean's campaign.
posted by skippy at 11:51 AM | 0 comments

if you're going to participate in the discussion, listen to what is said

one of skippy's readers from the right, person of choler [ed. note: we don't get it, either], left a comment on the report about veterans' facilities being cut tomorrow.

it seems only yesterday that, to the left, veterans were rice paddy poisoning baby napalmers. now you're gooey with solicitude for our well being.

call me cynical, but i suspect that your new found interest in veterans' problems has a lot more to do with your dislike of george bush than any tender feelings for ex-military. any stick will do to beat a dog, as they say.

we guess you only read our blog when you feel like lefty bashing, person. if you were a regular reader of our blog, you would know our position on several things.

first of all, we have always supported the troops. even back, as you say, "it seemed like only yesterday" when veterans were baby napalmers. (if yesterday was 30 years ago, you might have a point). however even then, when we was against the viet nam war, we was in favor of the soldiers, because we know they are only grunts doing their job.

second of all, we’ve always differentiated between the brave men and women who put their lives on the line for this country, and the cowards back home in office who have never served a day in their lives, who are dictating the political agenda. two different set of people there. awol failed to serve his tour of duty, he is a coward and a criminal for that act alone. we will not even get into cheney and wolfowitz. the men and women who are dying (over 200 since bush declared "mission accomplished") in iraq deserve the respect of this country. they've got mine.

third, since the repubbblicans are the ones who cut the benefits to veterans, they are guilty of hypocrisy in the extreme, because "supporting the troops" means more than flag waving. it means support, emotional and financial support, for the human beings, not just the oil agenda.

fourth, skippy comes from a military family. his father proudly served aboard a submarine in the pacific theater in world war ii. his sister, his aunt who lived with the family, and both men who married his two sisters were in the military. skippy himself had a congential heart defect and was rated 4-f, and could not serve. but that does not mean skippy doesn't know about honor, commitment, love of country, duty and loyalty. it's the repubbblicans that have trouble with these concepts.

what are the democrats doing to improve the veterans administration? since you obviously didn't read the post, we'll repeat it for you.

one lawmaker clearly worried is rep. gregory w. meeks, d-n.y., who tried without success to get language attached to the 2004 veterans’ appropriations bill preventing the st. albans veterans facility in queens, n.y., from being closed. the 386-bed facilities provides inpatient and outpatient care, including extended care for veterans who cannot easily be placed in nursing homes. meeks’ amendment that would have prevented the hospital from being closed was defeated by voice vote july 25 during debate on the funding bill.

but, that's right, you don't count democrats fighting for their constituents. the dems either have to fix the entire problem right away, or they are no good. as opposed to the repubbblicans, who are cutting the funding to the veterans benefits? how does that make the dems worse than the repubbblicans? even if you did have logic there, we fail to see it.

by the way, person of choler, what branch of the military did you serve in?
posted by skippy at 11:40 AM | 0 comments

the war that keeps on giving part three more troops killed today

bloomberg reports two more u.s. troops died in iraq today.

one u.s. soldier was killed and four were wounded in an attack on a military convoy today in baghdad. another soldier died in a vehicle crash in southern iraq.

meanwhile, centcom reports that yesterday another soldier was killed and two more wounded in small arms fire, near the town of ba'qubah, east of baghdad.

the lunaville iraq coalition casualty count now stands at 292, one less than bloomberg is reporting.

and in an interesting development, the u.s. military admits to killing civilians in the baghdad raid while searching for saddam hussein, reports msnbc.

four days after u.s. troops killed several passers-by in baghdad during the hunt for saddam hussein, the u.s. commander in iraq admitted on thursday that innocent people had died, but stopped short of accepting blame…

angry neighbours accused the task force 20 special unit hunting saddam's inner circle of failing to block all the side roads leading to a house they were raiding on sunday in baghdad's upscale mansour neighbourhood. when a car strayed into the fire zone, soldiers blasted it with machineguns.

u.s. soldiers and medical staff at a nearby hospital told reuters five men, including a teenager, were killed.

good thing the mission was accomplished!
posted by skippy at 11:26 AM | 0 comments


reader larry rubinow writes to correct a mis-statement we made earlier concerning the veterans' hospital here in los angeles:

"westwood, ca" is a small town in lassen county, about 500 miles from bakersfield. "westwood" is a neighborhood in the city of los angeles...i grew up in west los angeles and westwood (the neighborhood), and attended ucla. westwood was a fine place then, and may still be (though i have my doubts; in my youth, it was still possible for a middle-class family to purchase a decent house there). but i stand firm in my belief that a state shouldn't have two cities with the same name. hence, "westwood, ca" is in the shadow of mt. lassen, and "westwood" is in the shadow of the mormon temple.

we stand corrected, larry! by the way, westwood, the neighborhood (the one with the veterans' hospital), still is a fine place! great movie theaters, great restaurants, great coeds in shorts this time of year!

posted by skippy at 11:03 AM | 0 comments

Wednesday, July 30, 2003


you are the 170,000th visitor to skippy!
posted by skippy at 9:50 PM | 0 comments

repubblicans support the troops

except for actual support, that is. the army times tells us about the concern over friday's upcoming announcement about which va facilities will be closed.

an independent commission that has been studying the department of veterans affairs health care system is expected to recommend closing seven or eight hospitals and downsizing a dozen others, according to congressional sources who have been briefed on the plan.

readers of this space might remember skippy's veteran friend who told the story of the blind vet in bakersfield who has to ride the bus 90 miles to westwood, ca, to obtain medical services now. and it looks like it will get worse for our vets:

one lawmaker clearly worried is rep. gregory w. meeks, d-n.y., who tried without success to get language attached to the 2004 veterans’ appropriations bill preventing the st. albans veterans facility in queens, n.y., from being closed. the 386-bed facilities provides inpatient and outpatient care, including extended care for veterans who cannot easily be placed in nursing homes. meeks’ amendment that would have prevented the hospital from being closed was defeated by voice vote july 25 during debate on the funding bill.

but you know the repubbb's love our troops!
posted by skippy at 9:50 PM | 0 comments

as goes the military, so goes the nation

what does the military think about awol? thanks to a comment on the blog for america, we found the militarycity.com forums...and got a pretty good idea how our men and women in uniform are feeling these days.
posted by skippy at 6:33 PM | 0 comments

say hello

to james landrith - taking the gloves off.
posted by skippy at 5:57 PM | 0 comments

blogging around

the daily kos thinks awol is doing the gop a disservice by working to criminalize gay marriage.

the horse examine's louis freeh's role in resisting security measures against al qaeda (and the horse also brings us this new gallup/cnn/usatoday poll: less than half of america would vote to re-elect awol!)

one of people powering howard has created some people powered howard t-shirts for sale.

calpundit has a great examination of awol's falling polls, complete with color charts! it's almost as if we were reading usatoday!

spadehammer points out awol's on vacation again (uh, oh...remember what happened 2 years ago after his that month long vacation...)

dr. carol at the sideshow muses on the theofascist state we seem to be entering into...

nathan newman points out the rosy outlook of the newest beige book may be a lot of smoke and mirrors.

my daddy's blog found evidence of wmd's!

alterman enumerates the many ways that awol is awol on terrorism.

too many good articles at the smirking chimp to list individually...go there and read them.

and tom burka is a funny, funny dude.
posted by skippy at 5:38 PM | 0 comments

buy tomorrow today!

we are about half way through tom tomorrow's newest tome, the great big book of tomorrow. what can we say, except it's full of his usual hilarious irony (or is that ironous hilarity?), his astute insight, political jabs and social commentary.

it's great. go buy it. go buy it as soon as you can. trust us.

we love sparky!
posted by skippy at 5:35 PM | 0 comments

durn lazy corporatists

reader chris has sent us a link to the dlc, where we can let them know exactly how we feel about their activities and attitudes.

we suggest you keep it clean.
posted by skippy at 5:15 PM | 0 comments

say hello

to conceptual guerilla.
posted by skippy at 12:08 PM | 0 comments

Tuesday, July 29, 2003


thanks to the horse, we found this petition calling for a boycott of espn because they hired rush limbaugh.

the horse has a pretty good example of limbaugh's racism disguised as political analysis, as if you needed another reason to hold the fat head (and other body parts) in disdain. but we suggest you sign the petition, and boycott not only espn, but the sponsors as well.
posted by skippy at 9:01 PM | 0 comments

we're confident that down is up

there's good news and bad news.

the good news is, if you read money magazine or watch abc news, consumer confidence is up modestly.

the bad news is, if you read or watch anything else in the world, consumer confidence is down sharply.

yahoo reports that the consumer confidence index, the one everyone actually considers important, dropped 7 points in july, from 83.5 to 76.6. this is especially disheartening because analysts expected a 1.5 increase. of course, those analysts actually had jobs, and really weren't clued into reality:

the rising level of unemployment and sentiment that a turnaround in labor market conditions is not around the corner have contributed to deflating consumers' spirits this month," said lynn franco, director of the conference board's consumer research center. "expectations are likely to remain weak until the job market becomes more favorable."

and why do we care how confident consumers are?

economists closely monitor consumer confidence because consumers spending makes up for two-thirds of all economic activity in the united states and has been a key element in keeping the struggling economy afloat.

but if you're a republican, or sam donaldson, or anyone else in denial, you may want to read forbes.com, which reports that the abc/money magazine consumer confidence index actually rose slightly last week:

the abc news/money magazine consumer comfort index rose to -17 in the week ended july 27, near its firmest levels of the year, compared to -21 in the previous week.

so who are you going to believe? reality or peter jennings?
posted by skippy at 8:10 PM | 0 comments

giving something back

here's a game you can play to make those in blogtopia (y!wctp!) less fortunate than yourselves feel good.

go to the truth laid bear's weblog ranking by daily visits.

ignore the guys at the top (instapundit, daily kos, eschaton, etc. you visit those sites daily anyway).

instead, go visit the guys at the bottom of the list ( medic mom, the thirteen of us, sean dixon on line, uva law democrats). the blogs that only get one hit a day.

increase their hit rate by 100%! you'll have done a good thing!
posted by skippy at 8:02 PM | 0 comments

dean beats cheney!

not literally, though we can dream can't we? the blog for america reports that they raised $508,640 over the weekend for dr. dean's campaign...more than double their stated goal, and twice what cheney was expected to dick in his $1000 a hot dog fundraiser luncheon today at the very exclusive rich white man's club.

and, the dead trees media noticed! here's the boston globe story:

cheney ''does it with people who get plaques for raising $100,000. (dean's supporters) are regular people -- students, retirees -- who give $50,'' [dean campaign manager joe] trippi said. ''if george bush is running against that, it's not a left-wing thing or a right-wing thing, but people participating in their democracy. people don't want to believe that about us, but we'll just keep talking about it -- and proving it -- until they do.''

and here's the concord monitor:

in post after post, dean's staff took the opportunity to answer dean's skeptics, who doubt a former governor of vermont can beat the popular, well-funded president: "this is how you will defeat george w. bush in november of 2004," aides wrote.

let's keep our fingers crossed.

posted by skippy at 7:49 PM | 0 comments

man and superman

reader amy, who describes herself as "an excellent lurker," sent us a link to a fine blog, arms and the man. major barbara posts articles, links and musings exclusively about who's making money off of the war in iraq, an interesting approach, and, unfortunately, one that has a wide depth of field.

lately major barbara has been following the pentagon's department of terrorism bookmaking, which has been recently disbanded. (also thanks to speedkill who brought this matter to our attention).
posted by skippy at 7:14 PM | 0 comments

laugh, we coulda died

much like the democratic leadership council woud like us to do. over at the daily kos, they inform us that the dlc is looking for some new slogans to put on their bumper stickers.

we don't know if the kos was serious or not, but we do know all the commenters who left ideas were serious...about the dlc selling out the democratic party! want some laughs, go read the comments.
posted by skippy at 1:50 PM | 0 comments

thanks for the memories

we think mr. hope would approve of skippy's reason for not being able to write a eulogy upon the venerable comedian's passing yesterday...skippy was busy working in the recording studio on a comedy show during the day, and then he was at a script reading for a producer last night. but rest assured that upon hearing that bob hope died at the age 100, skippy and his entire staff stopped and said a silent joke in honor of america's favorite funny man.

bob hope's movies, especially the early ones in the 40's and 50's, were some of skippy's favorites. the road pictures, my favorite spy, my favorite brunette, casanova, ghostbreakers, all hilarious examples of impeccable timing, rapid-fire jokes and a certain physical grace.

bob was a dancer as well as a comedian, or more accurately, a hoofer; he cut his performing teeth in vaudeville, at a time when being a performer meant doing it all: singing and dancing as well as telling jokes.

and, it is skippy's humble opinion that bob hope was a pioneer in the goofy-break-the-fourth-wall-admit-we're-in-a-movie dynamic that the zuker brothers and many others take for granted today.

aside from the movies, bob was a master of every other medium america had to offer: the stage (on the road in little american towns on the circuit as well as the bright lights of broadway), radio, and of course, television.

but you can't mention bob hope without talking about his dedication to the military of this great country of ours. for years he would pack up as many hollywood stars as he could fit into a trunk and go entertain america's fighting men and women on the front lines, wherever they might be, including the first gulf war. unlike some people we could name, bob was not afraid to put himself in harm's way, or at least really close to it, to show his support for his troops.

skippy had the extreme honor of meeting bob once, many years ago, after skippy warmed up an audience for a british television show filiming in hollywood, on which bob was a special guest star. it is with great pride, as well as great sadness, that we say goodbye to bob hope, an american institution.

thanks for the memories, bob.
posted by skippy at 1:19 PM | 0 comments

Sunday, July 27, 2003

dean tops cheney!

no, it's not some sort of strange s&m scene, we're talking about dr. dean's blog for america goal of raising $250,000 this weekend, to match what cheney will pick up at his fundraiser tomorrow.

the bfa reports that as of 8pm real time, they have raised $250,733.20! and they are still counting!

so the netizens of blogtopia (yes! we proudly coined that phrase!) have matched the big shot sky box billionaires! go kids go!
posted by skippy at 8:54 PM | 0 comments

recall waiting - a skippy rant

readers of this space know we have never been big fans of "all the leaves are brown and the sky is" gray davis. but not for any of the reasons former thiefand gun nut/millionaire darrell issa has acused him of.

we believe the energy crisis was a repubbblican de-regulation fiasco, and even if davis made stupid and expensive agreements because of it, blaming him for it is like blaming your dad for the arson just because he put the family up in the hilton after somebody set fire to the house. and, after, all, if turning a budget surplus into a deficit is reason for recall, why aren't the california repubblicans demanding awol's resignation?

no, there are much better things to hate gray davis for. first of all, he's so much in the pocket of the prison-industrial complex in california, that there's hardly any room for the campaign contributions they give to him on a regular basis. and secondly, davis has made pay-for-play into an art form. if you're going to sacremento, bring your wallet, because the governor doesn't take american express.

that being said, we are of two minds about the current recall election that has been forced upon the citizens of the golden state. we are tired of repubbblicans subverting democracy with money. they dumped enough cash into the system to impeach clinton, they forced a run-off in florida (complete with faux grass roots demonstrations) to pass the decision up to the repubbblican supreme court, and now they didn't like the results of the last california gubernatorial race, so they paid some half-wits to bother people coming out of the albertson's grocery stores to sign a petition (a buck a name is the rumored price).

on the other hand, gray davis is a schmuck who is more concerned about raising funds than actually governing. if richard riodan runs, we will probably vote for him.

unless arnold schwartzenegger runs, thus assuring the entertainment tonight vote of the majority of dumb people who don't know any other name on the ballot, the repubblicans might find themselves diluting each others constituencies. bill simon and tom mcclintock (who is campaigning heavily against davis' increase in motor vehicle registration fee hikes) are making noises about entering the race, and we predict whoever wins, issa will come in dead last.

on the dems side, state sen. dean florez, and assembly woman audie brock are considering joining the race.

whatever happens, it will be colorful.

(thanks, and a tip of the bush kangaroo hat to california rough & tumble politics for several of the links in this rant!)
posted by skippy at 3:33 PM | 87 comments

blogging around

hammerdown deconstructs cheney's speech to the american institute of rich white guys earlier this week.

we agree with liberal oasis...the greens are not the problem, and screeching at them only makes dems look wonky.

we don't read lean left as much as we should...kevin constantly finds bits of news and gives insightful commentary that you can't find anywhere else...witness this piece about gephardt missing a vote on dismantling headstart...which passed by one vote.

lambert on eschaton writes about the administration warning military wives to "shut up" about the war.

talkleft tells us jack kemp is not going to run in the recall election against gray davis.

and, the hamster is on vacation this weekend. lucky guy! have fun, eric!
posted by skippy at 2:48 PM | 20 comments

dean v. bush/cheney update

the blog for america reports that they have gathered $221,667.84 in the dean team v. bush/cheney challenge.

go, blogtopia! yes! we coined that phrase!
posted by skippy at 2:33 PM | 0 comments

say hello

to a bunch of live journal users...darius bacon and kevin j. maroney and sclerotic rings and temima and steve.
posted by skippy at 2:31 PM | 0 comments

the war that keeps on giving part one killed in a grenade attack

the voice of america reports that one u.s. marine was killed and another wounded in a grenade attack outside of baghdad sunday morning.

ten american soldiers have died from hostile fire in iraq since tuesday, when saddam hussein's sons, uday and qusay, died in a shoot-out with u.s. troops in the northern city of mosul.

posted by skippy at 2:18 PM | 0 comments

Saturday, July 26, 2003

no benefit in pissing off the vets

as readers of this space may remember, skippy has a good friend who is a veteran with some health problems. this friends spends a lot of time at the veterans' hospital in westwood, california, usually waiting to see a doctor. so this friend has a lot of time to talk to his fellow veterans.

and, as we have reported, there is a rising feeling of anger among the veterans towards awol and the repubbblicans for cutting back on benefits and health services to our men and women in uniform. skippy's friend tells the story of the blind man who has to ride a bus from bakersfield to westwood (an almost 100 mile trip), because all the vet medical facilities inbetween have been shut down.

and now, knight ridder newspapers report the same thing:

normally republican, many retired veterans are mad that bush and the republican-controlled congress are blocking remedies to two problems with health and pension benefits. they say they feel particularly betrayed by bush, who appealed to them in his 2000 campaign, and who vowed on the eve of his inauguration that "promises made to our veterans will be promises kept."

"he pats us on the back with his speeches and stabs us in the back with his actions," said charles a. carter of shawnee, okla., a retired navy senior chief petty officer. "i will vote non-republican in a heart beat if it continues as is."

"i feel betrayed," said raymond c. oden jr., a retired air force chief master sergeant now living in abilene, texas.

many veterans say they will not vote for bush or any republican in 2004 and are considering voting for a democrat for the first time. others say they will sit out the election, angry with bush and republicans but unwilling to support democrats, whom they say are no better at keeping promises to veterans. some say they will still support bush and his party despite their ire.

aside from the dishonorable weaseling of ignoring the men and women who faithfully served this country, awol risks losing a usually-large voting block in 2004.

not to mention even more bad karma.
posted by skippy at 8:59 PM | 0 comments

the war that keeps on giving part july 26 update

we are very sorry to report that in addition to the three u.s. troops killed while guarding a children's hospital in the city of baquba today (which we reported earlier), a fourth was killed and two more wounded when their convoy in baghdad was attacked, says reuters.

the attack occurred on highway 10 near abu ghuraib on saturday afternoon. the soldiers were with an engineer unit attached to the 3rd infantry division, u.s. central command said in a statement.

two soldiers were evacuated to the 28th combat support hospital for emergency treatment where one subsequently died and the other is in stable condition, the statement said.

posted by skippy at 8:47 PM | 0 comments

max ochs update

a few days ago we brought you the story about max ochs, the 62-year-old parks volunteer who was fired from his job introducing the concert series he co-founded, for making remarks about awol.

(his remarks: awol was one of the few americans that didn't like reading).

our friend tekflower sends us this additional information: if you'd like to write somebody to protest the ridiculous and arbitrary firing of max, send your letters of disgust to:

dennis callahan c/o
anne arundel county department of recreation and parks
1 harry s. truman parkway
p.o. box 6675
annapolis, md 21401
posted by skippy at 8:41 PM | 0 comments

eight polls walk into a bar

and only one of them, a cbs news poll taken in early july, has awol in the 60's...right exactly at 60%, to be exact.

every other national poll, including faux news, has awol's job ratings polling in the 50's.

you know he's in trouble if faux news can't even rig a poll question to boost his ratings.

posted by skippy at 1:10 PM | 0 comments

just plame reckless

sen. charles schumer, in a letter to fbi director robert mueller, is calling for an official investigation into the "outing" of joe wilson's cia covert operative wife valerie plame, allegedly by senior administration officials, according to newsday.

schumer, a democrat, said fbi director robert mueller has an obligation to determine who divulged the identity of valerie plame, the wife of former ambassador joseph wilson, and "whether any higher-ups were involved."

wilson sparked the uranium intelligence controversy when he questioned president george w. bush's now discredited state of the union claim that iraq was shopping for uranium, a nuclear bomb ingredient.

…robert novak, a washington columnist, identified plame as an agency operative on weapons of mass destruction in a july 14 column. wilson has since charged that the disclosure was part of an intimidation campaign to silence him and others.

cbs.com editorial director dick meyer, in his editorial "george w. nixon," likens what happened to wilson and his wife to tricky dick's "enemies list" and the creeps at c.r.e.e.p.

a big thanks to cursor.org for the links!
posted by skippy at 1:05 PM | 0 comments

dean v. bush, the campaign years

the blog for america is setting a challenge for those dean supporters out in blogtopia (y!wctp!). it seems that awol/cheney is expected to raise $250,000 on monday, july 28, at some rich boy sky box $1000-a-hot-dog luncheon or something. the blog for america is asking all you kids out there to try to match that, or at least put on a damn good show, by contributing to dr. dean this weekend.

and, actually, considering awol wipes his butt with hundred dollar bills, dr. dean's supporters are doing pretty good. as of noon real time on saturday, the blog for america reports a total of $130,572.50 raised. that's right. more than half of what awol/cheney is expected to pick up.

(the total figure reminds us of the old old joke: "who gave fifty cents?" "they all did!")

we suggest you go and contribute what you can.
posted by skippy at 12:56 PM | 0 comments

the war that keeps on giving part three dead while guarding children's hospital

3 more u.s. troops were killed, and four wounded, in a grenade attack north east of baghdad, says abc news.

a grenade attack saturday killed three u.s. soldiers and wounded four as they guarded a children's hospital northeast of baghdad, scuttling hopes a widespread guerrilla insurgency might lose strength after the deaths of saddam hussein's elder sons.

abc claims that the deaths have brought the total number of troops killed "in action" to 161 since the start of the war. lunaville, who counts all deaths, including those from non-hostile action (ie, accidents, friendly fire, and suicide) puts the total number dead at a much higher 242.

abc also says that guerilla attacks on u.s. troops are averaging at about 12 a day.
posted by skippy at 12:42 PM | 0 comments

Friday, July 25, 2003

bloggy mountain high...colorado....

pardon our bad john denver imitation, but we are pleased as punch that our good friend talkleft got mentioned as a colorado blogger in the denver magazine 5280. we are also happy to see vodkapundit, one of the right wing blogs with enough class to link to us, also mentioned.

readers of this space may recall that skippy is originally from colorado, and his heart still belongs to the front plains spreading out before the rockies as they rise high into the air (specifically, aurora, colorado. yay, hinkley t-birds!)

congrats, talkleft!
posted by skippy at 9:53 PM | 0 comments

getting graphic

renee wants us to know that she has established a web site with available graphics for dean supporters, called people powered graphics. banners, posters, and flyers are available.
posted by skippy at 9:39 PM | 0 comments

address change

natasha of pacific views wants everyone to know they have a new url (and a new server of a company, which, quote, "cares whether or not
it's working.")

so please, make a note of their new address.
posted by skippy at 9:36 PM | 0 comments

freep the beard!

left hand side bar. go now!

and while you're at it, freep the cnn mainpage! lower right hand corner!
posted by skippy at 11:31 AM | 49 comments

the war that keeps on giving part one more british citizen killed

a british diver, clearing mines off the coast of iraq for the u.s., has died, according to ananova.

peter rudorf, 25, from salisbury, wiltshire, was part of a team working for the united states government clearing routes for ships into the port of umm qasr.

an employee of sub-surface engineering ltd, based in fareham, hampshire, he had been contracted as part of the project to make the port safe for ships, including those bringing humanitarian aid, to dock.

he was diving in front of dredgers moving debris and equipment from the waters.

it is not known exactly how he died last week but the company said in a statement: "sub-surface ltd is deeply upset over the death of peter rudorf during work in southern iraq."

posted by skippy at 11:29 AM | 54 comments

blogging around

thanks to the comments section on the daily kos, we found the gallup polls main page, with good news for democrats!

the blog for america links to american prospect editor franke-ruta's editorial in salon, which explains why support for dr. dean is growing in spite of everything the dlc can muster.

the horse follows the slime from the accusations against dick durbin all the way back to karl rove.

thanks to leah on eschaton, we are directed to eric alterman as he finds bill kristol plagarising his own commie-hater dad.
posted by skippy at 11:23 AM | 0 comments

the show must go off

our reader and good friend rose sends us yet another example of people losing their microphone opportunities after making remarks about awol, this one from the fredericksburg free lance star:

a baltimore acoustic artist has been banned from playing the fredericksburg borders books & music store--apparently because she made fun of president bush's legs between songs in her show friday night at central park.

julia rose, a singer-songwriter and a fitness advocate who often shows audiences her six-pack abs, told a fredericksburg borders audience friday: "george bush has chicken legs. he needs to pump some iron."

although most of the audience laughed, but a few people complained to the management, who banned rose from performing at that borders, although she will be allowed to play other borders stores in the area.

we agree with the articles summation:

it's debatable whether president bush has thin legs, but it seems certain that borders sees fredericksburg as having very thin skin.
posted by skippy at 11:08 AM | 0 comments

Thursday, July 24, 2003

he doesn't like it! hey mikey!

moveon.org wants us to know that the people of america did, indeed, construct a victory from the bottom all the up to capitol hill. the house of representatives voted for roll backs on the fcc's new rules. read all about it on the free press media reform site.

the daily kos elaborates here.
posted by skippy at 11:41 PM | 0 comments

we'd agree with rep. thomas

bill thomas, the man who tried to arrest all the democrats in the house of representatives, admits that his calling the capitol police last week was "just plain stupid," according to capitol hill blue.

fighting back tears, thomas declared in a speech on the house floor that he agreed his action was "just plain stupid."

"as my mother would have put it, 'when they were passing out moderation, you were hiding behind the door,' " said thomas, his shoulders shaking with emotion.

as skippy's mother would have put it, shut up, you idiot.
posted by skippy at 11:38 PM | 0 comments

fanmail from some flounder

we get a lot of letters from friends and relations alerting us to various causes and happenings around the country:

one such friend sent us a link to naral, urging everyone to email their own friends with information about being pro-choice.

and then reader rose sends us a story from the balitmore sun about a 62 year old man who was fired as hosting of a concert series he founded for dissing awol during one of the shows:

working with friends in the folk music scene, max ochs co-founded a summer concert series at quiet waters park in annapolis eight years ago. he has played host ever since, volunteering his saturdays to introduce bands, strum a guitar and read poetry during intermission to an audience of hundreds.

but after ochs made what anne arundel county officials say were intemperate remarks about president bush at a concert july 12, the county told the 62-year-old former civil rights activist his services were no longer needed.

the "intemperate remarks"?

by all accounts, ochs told the audience that "our leader" was one of the few americans who dislike reading. he wondered aloud whether the pauses in bush's speeches reflected an inability to follow words on the teleprompter.

we're not worried. we doubt that awol reads skippy, either!
posted by skippy at 5:05 PM | 0 comments

say hello

to somewhere on aia and tbogg.
posted by skippy at 12:20 PM | 0 comments

the war that keeps on giving part two dead sons of hussein only increase the killing

while the u.s. displays pictures of the bullet-ridden bodies of uday and qasay, against almost every culture's protocol for the treatment of the dead, 3 american troops died near mosul today, says yahoo news.

the three american soldiers who died today were members of the 101st airborne division, the same division that killed uday and qusay hussein on tuesday during a four-hour gun battle at a house in the northern iraqi city of mosul.

the americans were traveling in a convoy toward qayyarah, a city near mosul, when they came under fire from small arms and rocket-propelled grenades, the united states central command said. no soldiers were reported wounded.

so much for plan b...

(for those keeping count, the number of u.s. troops killed in iraq after awol announced "mission accomplished" is now only 40 less than the number killed in the war preceeding his tom cruise imitation).
posted by skippy at 12:15 PM | 0 comments

Wednesday, July 23, 2003

the war that keeps on giving part two more dead in spite of killing uday and qusay hussein

and a british officer dead from earlier collapse.

in spite of the victory of killing saddam hussein's 14 year old grandson, u.s. troops are still dying at a rate of about one a day in iraq.

wistv.com reports two more us soldiers killed, one in mosul, one in ramadi.

two more american soldiers have been killed in iraq. they died in attacks on two convoys.

a military spokesman says a roadside bomb went off on the outskirts of mosul, destroying a vehicle in the convoy. six other soldiers were hurt. mosul is the city where saddam hussein's two sons were killed in a firefight tuesday.

the other convoy was attacked late tuesday night in the city of ramadi, west of baghdad. one soldier was killed and two were wounded.

stay tuned.
posted by skippy at 4:01 PM | 0 comments

exactly how do you define the word "patriot?"

you may know that robert novak recently "outed" joe wilson's covert cia operative wife, valerie plame, in an attempt to discredit joe, or at least really mess with joe's head.

we ask ourselves, how can a repubbblican get away with destroying a link in our national security? if a democrat (or a stupid war correspondent who likes to open chicago gangsters' vaults) were to even mention the position of troops in iraq, there would be hell to pay. and yet novak calmly puts ms. plame's career, if not life, in jeapordy, for political motivations.

is this not the very definition of hubris? (because, truth be told, we don't really know what "hubris" means, so, like, we're askin'...is it?) the democratic veteran points us to mark kleinman's thoughts on the matter, and we tend to agree: not only is it disgusting and horrific, it's probably illegal.

let's kick up a fuss, folks. the white house is putting its service people at risk for retaliatory reasons. awol is not a big man in a big job, he's a big baby.

posted by skippy at 3:46 PM | 24 comments


after a long, long hiatus, the staff at skippy international decided to participate in this week's edition of the carnival of the vanities (the brain child of our friend big wig over at silflay hraka).

this week's edition is found at da goddess, and she did a bang up job of putting together the various work of many fine bloggers. we highly recommend you go read some of the suggested pieces.

you may ask, why now? you may ask yourself, why participate after several months of staying away? you may ask yourself, this is not my beautiful house! and the days go by...

the reason is, of course, a couple of weeks ago we wrote what we thought was a brilliant piece of satire, commenting on abby's mention of blogging in her national column: instapundit writes dear abby. we thought for sure we'd get a response from somebody in blogtopia! (y!wctp!)

nobody said boo! not even a "this is stupid, skippy." so we re-posted it and sent our link away to da goddess. whatever our own egotistical reasons, (egotistical being the operative word in this whole exercise), there are plenty of good pieces on the carnival this week, like the axioms of liberty at coerdroia, and can democrats learn from blair at wizbang, and our personal favorite, six quick fixes for the economy at resurrectionsong.
posted by skippy at 3:32 PM | 0 comments

Tuesday, July 22, 2003

the war that keeps on giving part two dead husseins do not stop the attacks

in spite of the killing of the king and queen of hearts (or whoever uday and qusay were in the deck of iraq's most wanted playing cards) the us can't stop the slaughter of its own troops in iraq.

another american soldier died today in a rocket propelled grenade attack, according to centcom.

a soldier attached to the 3rd armored cavalry regiment was killed and one was wounded when their vehicle convoy was hit with a rocket-propelled grenade and small arms fire in an ambush at approximately 9 a.m. july 22 on the road between balad and ar ramadi.

the number of u.s. soldiers killed in iraq since the day the statue died is now one less than the number killed in the major conflict before the fall of baghdad.

so at what point will awol admit the war's not over?
posted by skippy at 9:43 PM | 0 comments

in the pinkerton

a quote from one of our favorite conservatives, james pinkerton:

but, starting in 1973, those consequences came home to roost. on the homefront, the watergate cover-up destroyed nixon's presidency. and a weakened president could do nothing to save south vietnam.

today, few observers think that iraq is bush's watergate, but then, 30 years ago, few thought that a "third-rate burglary" could bring down a president.

(thanks and a tip of the bush kangaroo hat to antiwar.com for the link!)

posted by skippy at 9:28 PM | 0 comments

even spin can't save the day

the staff at skippy saw the news this morning about us forces killing saddam's two sons, and it was pretty well decided amongst us that this would be a pr coup for awol. in fact, wolf "how's my beard" blitzer said on cnn, some remark about how this would dominate the news for a while and shove off every other story, including, and we are quoting a journalist here, "even kobe bryant." [ed. note: (vomiting noises)].

the staff agreed, disheartedly. we thought the niger-uranium shaggy dog story was getting some traction, and the polls were dropping faster than awol's original drivers license from the texas department of motor vehicles records.

we were therefor sorry to see a story that had the potential to put awol back on top in the polls, or at least make the talking heads forget about things like personal responsibility and telling the country the truth before sending their sons and daughters off to get killed.

imagine our delight when, at 7 pm eastern, 4 pm real time, as faux news and cnn were hawking the killing of a 14 year old in mosul as the greatest thing since blue dress stains, we tuned to tweety bird on msnbc, and found, lo and behold, discussions about the niger lie, awol's dropping numbers, ducking responsibility and, in general, a continuation of last week's negative news.

say what you will about chris matthews. go ahead, we'll wait. uh huh...yeh...you're right...yup....'insufferable' is a word we'd use, yes...uh huh...probably fleet's, but we don't know his pharmacist personally...yes...he is a jerk, ok...when you're right, you're right.

done? all right, we continue: say what you will about chris matthews, he has been steadily on this story and not backing down, and surprise, surprise, he doesn't take the repubbblican line. he, along with 52% of america, is starting to see that awol is a pompous jerk who refuses to believe that he could be wrong.

and, wonder of wonder, miracle of miracles, over on cnbc, brian williams was opening his newscast with more on the shaggy dog story. the saddam's sons sinking into the sunset piece was later on in the newscast. amazing!

could nbc be just a little miffed that richard armitage snubbed andrea mitchell in favor of faux news? we doubt that could be the reason, but we are very happy to see a major network not back off from the story.

let's stay tuned folks...
posted by skippy at 9:18 PM | 1 comments

happy blogiversary!

to ignatz!

sam heldman, lawyer and blogger extraordinaire, has been blogging for about a year. and, as he admittedly is older and wiser now, sam finds himself less inclined to spout off about one thing or another, than when he was a hot-headed youth of how-ever-old-he-is-today-minus-one-year-ago.

therefore, he points out, that he will be blogging on ignatz at a slower, more erractic pace than before. but sam is quick to point out this is not a hiatus (he insists he doesn't have ted barlow disease), and only a lessening of his need to rant.

this is actually a good, healthy thing for the individual blogger, if not for blogtopia in general. (yes! and sam correctly knew we coined that phrase!)

so please, continue to check in with ignatz on an erractic basis, because if you're anything like us, your whole life is pretty erractic anyway.

happy blogiversary, sam!
posted by skippy at 5:37 PM | 0 comments

say hello

to samantix.
posted by skippy at 5:30 PM | 30 comments

letters...we get letters

plenty of mail today, announcing one thing or another:

reader chris sends us a note alerting us to a great buzzflash interview with barney frank.

madkane wants us to look at the plan for the email system that the white house rejected (we did, it's very funny, vintage kane).

reader sb1000 alerts us to a good interview by greg palast about the bush family fortunes.

and, alas, we must give our apologies to reader alex kulczycki, who sent us a hilarious parody of the dixie chicks' "goodbye earl" entitled "goodbye george." however, we live in today's environment of government reprisals for the slightest disagreement.

(witness the military leaders getting in hot water for their troops dissing rumsfeld, or joe wilson's cia wife getting her cover blown, or even conservative cartoonist michael ramirez getting a visit from the secret service for a too-subtle-for-wingnuts parody of the famous vietnam execution photo).

therefore, we are a bit hesitant to publish anything that indicates violence, however subtle (and poison is the subtlest of all violence, that's what they say on csi!) against the pretender to the throne in dc.

but trust us, it was a hoot. sorry, alex.
posted by skippy at 5:16 PM | 0 comments

Monday, July 21, 2003

the doctor is in!

we must take time to thank dr. avedon carol of the sideshow, who correctly attributes the coinage of the phrase "blogtopia" (without even using the word itself!)
posted by skippy at 7:07 PM | 0 comments

freep cnn

thanks to leah at eschaton: here's a poll right on cnn's front page: is bush doing a good job? (right hand side bar, towards bottom)

go! vote! make it count!
posted by skippy at 4:52 PM | 0 comments

moveon to the papers

we got another email from moveon.org, this time asking for money to help publish ads calling for an investigation into the uranium-iraq-niger shaggy dog story.

last wednesday, the senate voted along party lines against authorizing an independent commission. it's becoming increasingly clear that republicans want to bury this issue. in doing so, they're placing their own partisan interests ahead of the safety and security of the country. we need to tell them that that's just plain wrong. that's why we're launching a series of newspaper ads around the country that call on members of congress who haven't pledged to support a commission to place truth over politics.

we'll need to raise about $225,000 to make a real impact. we can do that if we all contribute -- $5 or $500. you can view the ad, see where it's running, and give to make it happen at: moveon.org contribute to local wmd ads

at least the dead trees media will be worth something!
posted by skippy at 4:48 PM | 0 comments

the war that keeps on giving part one dead, three wounded

another u.s. soldier was killed in baghdad today, and three others wounded, according to the dod defense link.

an attack in baghdad today killed one soldier from the 1st armored division and wounded three others at roughly 10:30 a.m. local time. the attack also killed an iraqi interpreter working with the coalition. a u.s. central command news release said the troops were in a vehicle that hit an "improvised explosive device" in the as sulaykh district. the soldiers then came under small-arms fire.

various agencies now put the total number of americans dead in iraq at various numbers. our favorite source, lunaville, has the tally at 115 since the day the statue died. however, they list 93 dead since awol proclaimed "mission accomplished" on may 1st, while the boston globe counts the number at 95.

whichever number is right, it's far too high.

posted by skippy at 4:41 PM | 0 comments

dear bloggy

you know blogs have made it into the mainstream when...dear abby gives some advice to a young blogger in her regular column.

a reader writes to ms. van buren:

dear abby: i am a 14-year-old girl about to start my freshman year in high school. most of my friends (including myself) have web logs -- or "blogs."

...i have several friends who have stopped speaking to each other after reading not-so-nice things about themselves in the blogs. i speak from experience, because i've been repeatedly bashed for my anti-war views, among other things.

[ed. note: join the club, kid!]

in spite of this, the web log trend continues to be popular. what's your opinion on this? -- bloggin' and lovin' it in new jersey

abby, who is nothing if not on top of what the kids are into these days, responds:

dear bloggin': the written word takes on a life of its own and never dies -- particularly in cyberspace. that is why it's important that a person carefully consider what he or she is posting before making it public. i cannot urge people strongly enough to remember that on the internet there is no such thing as an eraser. the messages live on and on for all to see.

but there is a delete button, abby. look into it.

however, we began to wonder if this would start a trend, with other bloggers writing to the venerable advice columnist. hmmmmm (screen goes all wavy, indicating a fantasy sequence)...

dear abby:

eugene volokh caught the left in another lie with damningly accurate criticism, yet they refuse to acquiesce and let bush be bush. what gives?

signed, ticked off in tennessee

dear ticked off:

wake up and smell the coffee! your so-called "friends" on the left are not going to change their minds or their blogs. it's better to be yourself on your own blog, than to try to convince the whole world that you are right. remember, you can catch more flies with honey than with vinegar!

posted by skippy at 4:32 PM | 0 comments

we love the internet

the problem with search engines is that they aren't that smart. witness the findlaw lawcrawler which found our blog in response to a query for references about marshall v. barlows, inc. (and lawcrawler heard skippy international inc. talking about josh marshall and ted barlow).

that's why we prefer google.
posted by skippy at 4:24 PM | 22 comments

Sunday, July 20, 2003

say hello

to politics in the zeros.
posted by skippy at 8:55 PM | 0 comments

skippy scoops the ap!

full disclosure: speedkill, and tom tomorrow, the daily kos and eschaton all scooped skippy on this one...but still...

the associated press is reporting (a day after we did) that judicial watch obtained papers from dick cheney's energy task force that includes maps of iraq's oil fields and possible foreign buyers for same oil.

sure, we're just repeating the same thing we said two days ago. but we said it before the associated press did! bow down, dead trees media, before the mighty power of blogtopia! and yes! we coined that phrase!

(thanks to the smirking chimp for the ap link!)
posted by skippy at 5:57 PM | 0 comments

the tide is turning

we've always wondered how the "tide" can "turn," seeing as how it only goes back and forth on a single straight line of direction..."in" and out."

wouldn't the tide "reverse," or "go back," or at the very least "turn around," or "do a 180"? ah, the futility of trying to make sense out of the english language!

be that as it may (and it may not for all we know), public opinion, if not the tide, is definately turning, slowly but surely, and not in awol's favor. from the daytona beach news-journal, local parents rethink 'facts' behind war with iraq:

six months ago cathy vann and vida jones sat in a living room and watched president bush make his case for going to war with iraq in his state of the union address.

now, as reports of erroneous information being included in the speech come to light, these mothers of soldiers fighting in the gulf feel like they may have been duped.

"i have changed my opinion," jones said. "i feel the country was mislead to gain support for the war."

from the pharos-tribune (indiana), most callers say president misled nation:

based on what respondents to the pharos-tribune sound off line have either seen, heard or read, most say the president lied to the american people in his state of the union address this year when he emphasized the reasons for invading iraq. some even said bush's speech misled the country so much, he should be impeached.

cbs news is reporting cia workers outraged:

[former cia analyst raymond] mcgovern says many in the intelligence community feel they're taking the heat for the failure to find weapons of mass destruction in iraq and for the uproar over the president's state of the union speech -- despite warnings from intelligence officials to some in the administration that the case against saddam hussein's weapons programs was far from air-tight.

and an interesting note from that cbs report:

this is not the first time the united states has gone to war based on facts that later turned out to be questionable. almost 40 years ago, president johnson pointed to unconfirmed reports of attacks on american ships in the gulf of tonkin to convince the congress to widen the war in vietnam

coincidence? you be the judge.

but mainly, we agree with this editorial from the portsmouth, nh, herald: claim that dissent hurts our troops is disingenuous at best.

their [republican political organizations] underlying message, however, is that questioning the president is somehow unpatriotic because it puts our brave fighting men and women at risk.

we don’t see it that way. the right to question and the right to object are the very rights our troops are fighting for, and if the exercise of those rights troubles our soldiers, they’ve missed the point. democracy, whether on the streets of portsmouth or baghdad, depends on the right to dissent.

amen to that!
posted by skippy at 5:34 PM | 0 comments

another (im)peachy idea!

we love the internet!

former attorney general ramsey clark has set up a web page where you can email your congressjerk and tell him/her to vote to impeach awol!

we love the internet!
posted by skippy at 3:55 PM | 2 comments

he's a real card

no, not andrew, but we suppose he might be in the deck somewhere. we mean awol himself, and all his little minions, who are now available on the operation hidden agenda playing cards.

wkmg.com reports that a bay area teach, kathy elder, put together a deck of playing cards in the style of the gummit's iraqi's most wanted deck.

eder's deck shows pictures of president george w. bush and other u.s. leaders, along with quotes questioning the rationale for the war.

and 50% of the profits go to charitable organizations, such as the gulf war veterans resource pages, the national gulf war resource center, and the pax christi delegations to iraq.

order yours today!
posted by skippy at 3:48 PM | 0 comments

brett bursey update

brett bursey's lawyers field a motion last friday requesting documents from the federal government and the state of south carolina, in hopes of bolstering the case that mr. bursey was arrested to silence his protest, rather than for any safety issues, according to the atlanta journal constitution.

mr. bursey, you will recall, was arrested in the columbia airport while holding a "no blood for oil sign" in an area in which awol was expected to arrive.

the journal-constitution says his lawyer, lewis pitts, cites in his motion a similar case from michigan where a student was arrested after refusing to put down an anti-awol sign.

in his motion, pitts wants the secret service and the state law enforcement division to turn over security plans for bush's visits to south carolina in march, august and october of 2002. they also want all memos, e-mails or other notes concerning bursey.

pitts said a sled agent gave a signed statement saying agents discussed that bursey was planning to protest the president's visit and asked one agent to make sure he was sent to an area a half-mile away from bush.

to bolster his argument, pitts included parts of a transcript from a michigan state trial where a college student was arrested for trespassing after he refused to put down a sign critical of bush.

in the transcript, a police captain said the secret service told him to move anyone protesting the president away from areas near where bush would speak.

as always, we will keep you up to date on mr. bursey's progress. (a big thanks to lambert at eschaton for alerting us to this new development!)
posted by skippy at 3:48 PM | 0 comments

backwash - a skippy rant

our faithful reader tekflower found an interesting article in the uk independent. it seems one of the unforseen consequences of global snottiness is repercussions in the corporate boardrooms (and profits) of good ol' ameircan companies...

but what if american products have started to stand for something else? such as bullying imperialism or intolerance of the rest of the world's problems?

…this is indeed what corporate america has been asking itself, and now it may have the first inkling of an answer. according to a report just completed by the new york consulting firm roperasw, the value of america's favourite brands abroad is showing unmistakable signs of slippage. for now, at least, it is just possible that selling a product inextricably linked with uncle sam and the stars and stripes may be more of a liability than a boon.

on a broader level, this is the obvious problem with orthadox religious-based social intercourse of any kind, be it global-political, or just standing in a line at a bank.

(by "orthodox" we don't mean a specific sect, but a particular mindset, and we've all seen it, thus: "my beliefs are not only right, they are the only way to look at the world and god and humankind's place in the universe, as well as how to go to school and eat lunch and dress and watch tv and things like that. and every body else is not only wrong, they are all damned to hell until and unless they agree with me. and i have every right to shout it loud and clear all the time, and if you disagree, you are suppressing my right to religious freedom, you heathen you.")

see, that's the sort of attitude that just turns people off. we are always amazed when born-again wacko's [ed. note: not all born agains are wacko's, nor are all wacko's born agains] cry that people are "bashing" christianity. well, why not? christianity, at least their brand of it, doesn't just bash other people, it damns them to eternal hell of torment just because they don't agree. shouldn't you expect a little "bashing" in return? and gosh, we're betting that of the two, you'd rather be "bashed" than "damned." at least, we would.

so it should be no suprise at all that our perceived (and real) holier-than-thou attidues make the rest of the world in general want to boycot american products. america used to be a place to look up to, a place to want to go to. and not because of the running water, and britny spears, and rolex watches and paved roads and who wants to marry my dad and spongebob squarepants. those are only material representations of wealth, and gee, doesn't some famous old book say something about moneychangers and camels in the eye of the needle and stuff?

and now, even those representations of wealth mean very little to the rest of the world. again, from the independent:

of the top 10 global us-based firms, only one saw an increase in its brand-power compared with a year earlier. all of the others were either unchanged, which is bad enough, or in negative territory. this is the fifth year that the same survey has been carried out. and 2003 is the first time that american companies have seen their brand-power starting to sink. by contrast, the survey shows gains for the best-known non-us brands.

no, america was looked up to by every other country in the world because it was the land of the free. the place to be whatever you could muster yourself into, without fear of reprisal. but folks, nobody thinks it's that way any more. it's the land of the shut up and buy, and then pray, in that order. it's the land of the boycott the chicks if they disagree with bush. it's the land of the fbi will question you about your reading material. it's the land of the no more paper trails to count your vote. again, the independent:

the advertising agency mccann-erickson recently sent a memo to its us clients advising them to rethink their marketing approaches and, above all, to avoid trying to "wrap their brands" in the american flag, while trying to stress local roots in the markets for which they were aiming. the war, the agency said, risked "tarnishing the reputation of american culture and the mythic 'american dream', which has long drawn consumers around the world to the united states to live, work or visit".

a lot of places don't find american culture any more free than their own these days (just ask the iraqi's about their free elections). so why be amazed that america is no longer looked up to, but rather down upon?

there is such a thing as karma, even on a geo-political scale.
posted by skippy at 3:44 PM | 1 comments

we're running out of fingers to point

things are still pretty dicey for awol (not to mention his buddy blair across the pond). no matter whom he tries to blame for that uranium-iraq-niger shaggy dog story, nobody will take the heat.

the state department found the shaggy dog story 'dubious,' says the chisun-times:

the [recently released classified] document cites ''compelling evidence'' of such a program--but it also reflects prewar divisions within the u.s. intelligence community, including a state department dismissal of reports that saddam hussein was shopping for uranium ore in africa as ''highly dubious.''

and, the cia did not vet the shaggy dog story, according to the washpost:

the white house, in the run-up to war in iraq, did not seek cia approval before charging that saddam hussein could launch a biological or chemical attack within 45 minutes, administration officials now say.

even worse, awol made the claim in other places than the sotu speech, and with bigger exaggerations:

for example, the same rose garden speech and sept. 28 radio address that mentioned the 45-minute accusation also included blunt assertions by bush that "there are al qaeda terrorists inside iraq." this claim was highly disputed among intelligence experts; a group called ansar al-islam in kurdish-controlled northern iraq and jordanian abu musab zarqawi, who could have been in iraq, were both believed to have al qaeda contacts but were not themselves part of al qaeda.
posted by skippy at 2:22 PM | 0 comments

but what about uncle war?

we stop by antiwar.com daily, for obvious reasons. to wit, today's stories:

office of special plans behind phony 'intelligence':

secretary of state colin powell appears to be the only white house official who questioned the accuracy of the intelligence information coming out of the office of special plans. a day before he was set to appear before the united nations feb. 5…powell omitted numerous claims provided to him by the office of special plans about iraq’s weapons program because the information was unreliable, according to an early february report in u.s. news and world report.

first campaign against iraq's transitoinal governing council:

imams of the sunni mosques in baghdad yesterday launched a campaign against the transitional iraqi governing council calling on iraqis not to recognize it and to reject its decisions, while a commission for their scholars criticized the "sectarian and ethnic" composition of the council which "gives a certain sect a majority at the expense of the iraqi people group and without a referendum."

prominent shiite cleric denounces u.s.-picked council:

an influential shiite muslim cleric condemned iraq's u.s-picked governing council as made up of "non-believers" and vowed to create a rival body, as his followers in a historic mosque shouted "death to america."

american combat deaths in iraq top 150:

“i always feel like i’m a target,” says spc. anthony gisi, standing in a humvee behind the most powerful weapon these soldiers have to defend themselves — a mounted .50-caliber machine gun. “kind of feel like bait up here in the gunner’s hatch.”

and, unfortunately, we find that two more u.s. soldiers were killed in iraq today:

the two u.s. soldiers died when rocket-propelled grenades and small-arms fire struck their convoy early sunday near tal afar, a town west of the northern city of mosul, said military spokesman cpl. todd pruden. another soldier was injured. all the victims were from the 101st airborne division.

we recommend a daily reading of antiwar.com.
posted by skippy at 2:07 PM | 0 comments

blogging around

thanks to talkleft, we find the bushwar's research and analysis of dr. dean's 16 questions for awol.

the sideshow talks about media cover-up, and provides examples.

kathryn cramer finds another instance of the media cleaning up awol's garbling of our language.

body and soul reports that bush had no intelligence.

gail davis reports that the government's do not call web site has already been hacked, and people's numbers have been stolen.

cursor.org finds numerous instances where awol told the iraq-niger-uranium shaggy dog story in other places than the sotu speech.

steve gilliard on the daily kos likens tony blair's problem with the deceased scientist david kelly to the scottish play. [ed. note: we are from the theatre, we dare not speak its name!]

why we love hammerdown.

and hey, be sure to buy the great big book of tomorrow!
posted by skippy at 1:17 PM | 0 comments

Saturday, July 19, 2003

happy birthday!

to central park, which is 150 years young today! (you don't look a day over 100!)
posted by skippy at 7:49 PM | 0 comments

scary movie

reader tekflower sends us this little movie from bush flash, entitled church & state.
posted by skippy at 7:32 PM | 0 comments

the war that keeps on giving part july 19

another solider has died of injuries sustained in a rocket-propelled grenade attack, says centcom.

a 1st armored division soldier died from injuries received from a small arms and rocket-propelled grenade attack that occurred in the abu ghuraib neighborhood july 19 at approximately 1:30 a.m.

the soldier was providing fixed site security at a bank when the unit came under attack. the soldier was evacuated to a nearby aid station and subsequently died.

that brings the average deaths per day since awol declared mission accomplished to 1.26, and for the entire war, up to 2.23.
posted by skippy at 1:21 PM | 0 comments

the latest on the kobe bryant story

we don't care. get a grip, there are people dying in the world. go to fox news if you want to hear about gossip.
posted by skippy at 1:12 PM | 0 comments

how is the ways and means committee like a fruitcake?

it's full of fruits and nuts, and if you didn't see that one coming, you'd better start learning braille!

in yet another piece of evidence that the democrats are actually growing spines these days, there was a terrible brawl full of name calling and actual summoning of the police on capital hill yesterday.

the repubbblicans, lead by chairman bill thomas, tried to get a draft of pension bill passed without letting the democrats either (a) time to read the bill or (b) time to discuss it.

the dems went into a back room to talk things over amongst themselves, leaving rep. pete stark to stave off a unanimous repubbblican vote.

both thomas and stark are from california, and both are not known for their ability to play well with others. things got dicey, according to the boston globe:

in the main committee room, stark insisted that the bill be read word for word, a rare tactic that would give his democratic colleagues in the back room time to discuss their strategy. the bill's reading infuriated republicans, eager to vote and leave town for the weekend.

according to the democrats' version of events, thomas's staff summoned a capitol police officer, who told them that a ''disturbance'' had been reported and ordered the democrats to leave the back room. the democrats refused to budge.

according to the republicans, thomas called the police because he feared that stark would get into a fight with representative scott mcinnis, republican of colorado, a former police officer 21 years stark's junior.

[ed. note: what the globe fails to clairfy is that mcinnis is 50. do the math, that makes stark, the man he was physically afraid of, 71 years old.]

a transcript of the committee meeting quoted stark as belittling thomas's intellect. although the transcript does not show it, mcinnis interjected, ''shut up.'' the transcript then shows stark saying: ''you think you are big enough to make me, you little wimp? come on. come over here and make me. i dare you, you little fruitcake.''

the police, upon assessing the scene, decided they were out of their jurisdiction (or league), and left without making arrests. but, the bill passed.

now, the kids over at eschaton, who feel that fascistic behaviors deserve smart-ass responses, are suggesting that everyone mail bill thomas a fruitcake. they provide rep. thomas's address, and links to mail order fruit cakes.

we like that idea!
posted by skippy at 1:06 PM | 0 comments

the meme is out there

we don't know if this is a good thing or a bad thing.

steve gilliard, writing in the daily kos, uses the term "blogtopia" without mentioning (or more importantly, linking to) us.

now, readers of this space know that yes! we coined that phrase! and indeed, we coined the phrase "yes! we coined that phrase!"

and many bloggers have correctly attributed the phrase to us, including, but not limited to, tom tomorrow, and talkleft, and blue streak, and a rational animal, among others.

but we wonder if a meme, like a child, is a success when it leaves the nest and flies on its own out there in the real world (ok, we guess that's really a bird, not a child; we suppose it's confusing to force a metaphor into a simile, but probably not as confusing as irrelevant parathetical phrases in a musing about social intercourse while talking about deconstructing grammar in the first place, n'est ce pais?) (huh?)

in other words, as if we haven't already used enough words on this subject, shouldn't we be happy that our phrase has become part of the blogging subculture, so much so that it's now unattributable, and therefor authentic?


we want the links, and the recognition, dammit! come on, kos, we link to you guys enough! as dr. evil would say, throw us a frickin' bone, here!

it's bad enough that the subs over at eschaton use "awol" without even a nod towards us. we are petulant and spoiled, a very despotic about our words, even more so than the rev. mr. dodson's humpty dumpty, and we will take our words and go home if we aren't placated!

so there!

ok. we have finished our tantrum now, and will return to our regularly scheduled adulthood, currently in progress...
posted by skippy at 12:40 PM | 31 comments

need proof? we'll make some for you!

newsday is saying that intelligence reports on iraq's weapons capabilities were "a problematic footnote" during the clinton administration, but under awol's term, grew to seven times their size, based on which way the "political winds" were blowing.

although not stating that the cia actually "cooked the books," several former top intelligence officials do posit that the cia began writing iraq arms intelligence reports for "the consumers" -- the people in the administration.

"i'm afraid that the u.s. intelligence community, particularly the cia ... is sometimes quite sensitive to the political winds," said greg thielmann, who retired in september as a senior intelligence official at the state department.

thielmann, who is critical of what he says has been an administration proclivity to exaggerate intelligence to support the war in iraq, said that changes in tone and content in the current reports refute the white house argument that there has been consistency in the claims over the past two administrations.

once again, kids, it's not really a lie if they don't catch you at it.
posted by skippy at 12:22 PM | 0 comments