Archive for the ‘George W. Bush’ Category

Posted by Tim Ireland at 14 August 2007

Category: George W. Bush

As the Bush administration continues to implode, Karl Rove leaves to ‘spend more time with his family’. (more)

I’m glad to see the back of him. Like Alastair Campbell, he’s nothing more than a media-savvy sociopath.

(To paraphrase Banksy; why work hard to excel at any one thing when you can simply excel at cheating?)








Posted by Tim Ireland at 10 October 2006

Category: George W. Bush

There’s a lot about the Mark Foley / Congressional page scandal that requires scrutiny and discussion, starting with the initial post on this weblog that led to a series of responses (1, 2, 3) that led to the initial ABC report and the more explicit revelations that followed.

[Note – If you have a weak stomach, you may choose to stop reading this post right now and instead restrict your scrutiny to the electronic messages themselves. Here’s one link and here’s another.]

For reasons that I hope would be obvious, I do not agree with the way these claims were initially aired. Some leeway may be allowed if – over the years – approaches to various official bodies proved fruitless (and here’s something else these two paedo-claim blogs have in common from different perspectives; the institutional cover-up) but what appears to be widespread inside-knowledge of this abuse does make one wonder if this well-timed discovery is truly serendipitous. There is every possibility that members of both parties allowed a serial offender to continue on his merry way just so they could gain/maintain a political advantage.

Scrutiny. Discussion. Required.

It’s important to acknowledge this because – when taken at face value – some (stress on some) of the following seems like fair and just behaviour. But there is far more to this than just face value… and part of the Big Problem here is that too many people take what they are fed at face value.

Take a look at the online version of the initial ABC report. As part of the conversation-culture many of us are trying to foster, it allows comments. Read those comments and see how willingly this trust is abused in a co-ordinated attempt to shut down the story.

I’ve already said that the origins deserve scrutiny, but – if you have the patience – you also need to look at the TANG-emboldened right-wing bloggers as they journey from scrutiny to claims of a liberal-media/Democrat ‘set-up’ inside a mere 36 hours: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10

Meanwhile, a man central to this scandal who deserves a *lot* of scrutiny manages to avoid it by using children as a human shield.

Soon after this, Matt Drudge, an ‘anti-establishment’ figure who is – in reality – a willing tool of the current administration (i.e. Guido in 4 years if he gets his way) assures the public that it is a set-up, and that the victims of this abuse are gagging for it (transcript here and excellent editorial here).

Soon after that, Rush Limbaugh (someone else with a large audience resulting from his pandering to the lowest common denominator) also cries ‘set-up’ and makes the boldest of a series of claims that liberals are the true hypocrites here, as they’re long-time proponents of man-boy love.

By this time, the airwaves and tabloids are full of focus on Foley’s status as Teh Gay, and the ‘liberal hypocrisy’ message is slammed home again and again because liberals argue for gay rights and – as we all know – being gay automatically makes you a paedophile.

What deserves particular attention is that this ‘debate’ is what will shape the upcoming mid-term elections, *not* this staggering loss of freedom in the name of ‘security’ or the Bush administration’s staggering failure to address security in any real or responsible sense.

But… there’s some disgraceful conduct here; taken individually or collectively, these many deceits and the large audiences that are prone to them reveal something rotten at the heart of democracy, media and the blogosphere (i.e. the kind of rot that allows the powers that be to get away with all sorts of crimes against humanity).

This also deserves your attention… if you can stomach it.

UPDATE – How strange. Rebekah ‘Red Mist’ Wade – scourge of paedophiles the world over – has decided not to feature this scandal in the Sun newspaper. At all. 12 days after the story exploded, and there hasn’t been so much as a passing mention.








Posted by Tim Ireland at 2 October 2006

Category: George W. Bush, It's War! It's Legal! It's Lovely!, The War on Stupid

Belfast Telegraph – Bush claims victory as Senate approves terror suspects bill: Both sides are claiming victory from the compromise. But human rights groups say the final version allows the President too much discretion in deciding what interrogation methods are legitimate, and in providing immunity for CIA interrogators from prosecution for war crimes. The Bill, passed by a 253-168 vote in the House, sets up military tribunals to try suspects. It thus complies with June’s Supreme Court ruling that any such system must be approved by Congress, and cannot merely be imposed by the Pentagon, as were the tribunals set up at Guantanamo Bay. But defendants’ rights will still fall well short of those guaranteed by civilian and most military courts. It also defines war crimes including torture, rape and biological experiments on detainees. But Mr Bush will have wide authority to decide which other interrogation techniques are legal. The legislation also fulfils a vital political purpose. With party ranks reunited, the White House is again trying to manoeuvre Democrats in a corner, in which it can depict the latter’s opposition to anti-terror legislation as proof of weakness on national security. Republicans are counting on the issue to retain control of Congress in November. After the House vote, Dennis Hastert, the Speaker, accused the 168 Congressmen who opposed it (all but eight of them Democrats) of “voting in favour of more rights for terrorists”. If Democrats had their way, he said, they would “coddle” the very people who were trying to harm Americans around the world.

Please note that – at the core of that latter deception – is the absolute certainty that all suspected terrorist are terrorists.

Some further reading for you below. Me, I’m rendered all-but-speechless right now, and have nothing to add beyond the one thing that is a certainty… America is now a rogue state.

Ian MacLeod’s Blog – They Passed the Torture Bill, Gave Bush Wiretapping, and America is Dead
The Existentialist Cowboy – The Week in Review from Republican Occupied America
Kurt Nimmo – Habeas Corpus Murdered, Few Notice
Amnesty International – USA: Congress rubber stamps torture and other abuses
Juan Cole – Craig Murray on Manufacturing Terror (Oil, Lily Pad Bases and Torture)
The UK Today – You may like to think that the following couldn’t happen here








Posted by Tim Ireland at 13 September 2006

Category: George W. Bush

BSSC – A War on the “War”: It was widely expected that President Bush would not use the anniversary of September 11th to make a controversial or politically motivated partisan statement but last night that is exactly what he did. The willingness of the Bush administration to manipulate the deaths of 3,000 people for their own purposes apparently knows no bounds. It really is a sickening spectacle.

Agreed.

We’ll want to watch the mid-terms very carefully… if the Democrats look like making significant gains, Bush could very well choose to undermine our security in order to gain a few votes for the Republicans (if he hasn’t done so already).

Also, Bush and Blair are equally guilty of repeated claims that they must stand firm in Iraq to protect the Iraqis from the threat of terrorism… that they themselves brought to that country!

Bush is the worst offender on this front; in one breath he will repeat the lie that Iraq was invaded to protect the Iraqi people and in the next he will proudly proclaim that Iraq has become the central front of the ‘war’ on terror (thus keeping it away from U.S. shores).

So what’s it to be, George? Did you seek to save the Iraqis or did you seek to put them in harm’s way in order to keep Al Qaeda out of the shopping malls of America?

UPDATE – Well said, that man! (transcript)








Posted by Tim Ireland at 1 September 2006

Category: George W. Bush

Mirror – Bush Whacked: Fury as Dubya ‘assassinated’ by C4: A hard-hitting British TV drama that shows President Bush assassinated by a terrorist sniper sparked outrage last night… John Beyer of TV watchdog MediaWatch said the drama was irresponsible and could even spark a real-life assassination attempt. He added: “There’s a lot of feeling against President Bush and this may well put ideas into people’s heads.” And Mr Beyer issued a stark warning to Channel 4 bosses, saying: “If something happens as a consequence of this film, then blood is on their hands. Film-makers must understand how much power the media has. For that reason, the film should not be screened.” (via)

As you might expect, Media Watch Watch has a comment on the John Beyer comment.

My views on this kind of thing are clear:

Bloggerheads – October 2003: While Bush’s mouthpiece Ari Fleischer may see fit to flout US law prohibiting the assassination of foreign leaders by dropping less-than-subtle hints, you should not under any circumstances attempt to pierce George W. Bush’s brain with a bullet. It’s not only a close-to-impossible shot, it’s a very silly thing to do.

But I want to know where the hell John Beyer was when I needed publicity for this little number.

Related Links:
Guardian – More4 risks US ire with Bush assassination film
Ms Underestimated – What About A New Bush Assassination Movie? (VIDEO)








Posted by Tim Ireland at 11 August 2006

Category: George W. Bush

AFP – Bush seeks political gains from foiled plot: Weighed down by the unpopular war in Iraq, Bush and his aides have tried to shift the national political debate from that conflict to the broader and more popular global war on terrorism ahead of November 7 congressional elections. The London conspiracy is “a stark reminder that this nation is at war with Islamic fascists who will use any means to destroy those of us who love freedom, to hurt our nation,” the president said on a day trip to Wisconsin.

Spoken like a true ‘Christian’ fruit-loop. Way to pile on the alienation, George.

UPDATE (12 August) – CBS – Democrats Assail GOP Fundraising Effort: Democrats assailed the Republicans Friday for e-mailing a fundraising appeal mentioning the war on terror hours after British authorities disclosed they had disrupted a plot to blow up aircraft headed to the United States. “In the middle of a war on terror, we need to remain focused on furthering Republican ideas more than ever before,” former New York City mayor Rudy Giuliani said in a letter that asked for donations to the Republican National Committee. The RNC blamed a low-level staffer for distributing the fundraising appeal, which the party said had been scheduled for release before news of the plot broke.

Wow, this story even has its own bad apples… and a lovely assertion that only Republican ideals can save you from the terrists.








Posted by Tim Ireland at 17 July 2006

Category: George W. Bush, The War on Stupid, Tony 'King Blair

“I think that sometimes, for understandable reasons, there’s been a hesitation in putting the real truth of this situation up to people, and the fact is there are those out in that region, notably Iran and Syria, who do not want this process of democratization and peace and negotiations to succeed.” – Tony Blair

I really hate to bang on about this, but there’s also those in another region, most notably Missouri and Washington, who do not want this process of democratisation and peace and negotiations to succeed either.

Even if you choose to deny that there’s an active conspiracy to strategically place Israel at the centre of unrest in the Middle East in order to fulfill biblical prophecy and pave the way for the End of Days, you have to acknowledge that the Republicans are going to need all the support they can get in the the upcoming mid-term elections, and Bush is unlikely to say or do anything that’s likely to upset his Christian extremist base.

Prepare yourselves for a few weeks of very careful phrasing….

UPDATE – Hmm. I’d best correct that statement; Bush is unlikely to *intentionally* say or do anything *publicly* that’s likely to upset his Christian extremist base.

Reuters – Mideast crisis drives Bush to colorful language: A microphone picked up an unaware President Bush saying on Monday Syria should press Hezbollah to “stop doing this shit” and that his secretary of state may go to the Middle East soon. Bush was talking privately to British Prime Minister Tony Blair during a lunch at the Group of Eight summit in St Petersburg about an upsurge of violence in the Middle East, not realising a microphone was transmitting what he said.

UPDATE – The BBC has a report and a partial transcript of their ‘quiet chat’. Wider transcript here. CNN has a video on this page. More video links here at Crooks and Liars, who also highlight Rush Limbaugh describing this conflict as ‘a gift to the world‘…

UPDATE – Newt Gingrich is being equally optimistic. Let’s go make us some lemonade!

UPDATE (18 Jul) – There’s a nice bit of analysis on the front page of today’s Independent which is also appears here. Highlights are repeated below:

Bush: What about Kofi? (inaudible) His attitude to ceasefire and everything else … happens.

(Change of subject. Now they are on to Lebanon and the UN secretary general, Kofi Annan)

Blair: Yeah, no I think the (inaudible) is really difficult. We can’t stop this unless you get this international business agreed.

Bush: Yeah.

(Mr Blair is trying to push the idea of a UN peacekeeping force in Lebanon. That ‘yeah’ does not sound like a wholehearted agreement)

Blair: I don’t know what you guys have talked about, but as I say I am perfectly happy to try and see what the lie of the land is, but you need that done quickly because otherwise it will spiral.

(Meaning: ‘Please, George, let me go to the Middle East and be a world statesman’)

Bush: I think Condi is going to go pretty soon.

(Meaning: ‘No’)

Blair: But that’s, that’s, that’s all that matters. But if you… you see it will take some time to get that together.

(Meaning: ‘Oh well, all right, if you don’t want me to. Just a thought’)

Bush: Yeah, yeah.

Blair: But at least it gives people…

Bush: It’s a process, I agree. I told her your offer to…

(Meaning: ‘Drop it. You’re not going.’)

Blair: Well… it’s only if I mean… you know. If she’s got a…, or if she needs the ground prepared as it were… Because obviously if she goes out, she’s got to succeed, if it were, whereas I can go out and just talk.

Oh, and a lot of emphasis has been placed on the whole “Yo, Blair” thing, but the reality is probably closer to “Yo, boy!” (or perhaps “Here boy!”).

UPDATE – Blair Watch – Tweedledum and Tweedledummer

UPDATE – Blair Watch – Margaret Beckett and the Middle East: Listen to Margaret Beckett outline British Policy over the chaos in Israel, Palestine and Lebanon… Clue – there doesn’t appear to be a policy past Dubya’s analysis and a refusal to say anything bad about the grotesque actions of plucky little Israel.

UPDATE – BSSC – A Problem Denied is a Problem Solved: Those who believe that the answer to the question is “no, it isn’t the case that a new generation of militants has been created as a result of the invasion of Iraq” might want to reflect on the reasons why the Foreign Secretary has gone to such great lengths, preposterous lengths you might say, to avoid giving that answer. It is difficult to avoid the conclusion that the reason for her evasion is that she knows that the actual answer is “yes, it is the case” and she can’t admit that for obvious political reasons. If there is any other explanation, I certainly can’t think what it could be.

UPDATE – Bush gave the German Chancellor an uninvited neck massage at the summit! (Another video link here.) Poor Tony! First George won’t let him play statesman, and now somebody else gets his reach-arounds. He’s going to be in a bad mood when he gets home…. we’d best prepare our excuses for tell-tale bruises.

UPDATE – Hahahahahaha! Steve Bell is some kind of psychic genius!








Posted by Tim Ireland at 23 June 2006

Category: George W. Bush

Raw Story – Email to Brown claims Bush was happy former FEMA head was taking heat for Katrina response: An “embarrassing email” leaked by former FEMA head Michael Brown to CNN quotes President Bush as saying at a Cabinet meeting held shortly after Katrina that he was pleased that Brown was taking most of the heat for the federal government’s roundly criticized response to the hurricane. “I’d rather they beat up on him than me or Chertoff,” President Bush allegedly said at the meeting, referring to the head of the Department of Homeland Security, Michael Chertoff. The sender also thanked Brown for “diverting hostile fire away from the leader.”

Related posts:
Sep 5 2005 – White House swings into action…. to shift blame
Sep 6 2005 – Inhuman scum
Sep 7 2005 – Katrina: it is worse than you could possibly imagine
Sep 8 2005 – New Orleans declared public relations disaster area
Sep 12 2005 – Whatever it takes (except sacking my mates)
Sep 13 2005 – Weblogs by (former) residents of New Orleans
Sep 14 2005 – A slightly chilly day in hell








Posted by Tim Ireland at 20 June 2006

Category: George W. Bush

The Boston Globe – Sending shameful signals: “No question Guantanamo sends, you know, a signal,” President Bush said last week. “It provides an excuse, for example, to say the United States is not upholding the values that they’re trying to encourage other countries to adhere to.” This frank admission is anomalous, of course, because President Bush intends to maintain the prison complex in Cuba indefinitely. And every day that he does so, the signal sent grows louder.

You may recall Bush’s recent press conference with Tony Blair where he ‘admitted’ a ‘mistake’. In context, his primary concern was not about what he had done, but what he had said… and that; “in certain parts of the world it was misinterpreted” (his further nod to the mistake of Abu Ghraib blatantly ignored the mistakes behind it, and included a false claim that the people responsible had been brought to justice).

This is more of the same; an assertion that Guantanamo Bay is not a mistake… but in certain parts of the world it’s misinterpreted.

So what we’re hearing here is nothing but noise deliberately designed to ease minds and pass blame as the true signal becomes harder and harder to ignore.








Posted by Tim Ireland at 12 June 2006

Category: George W. Bush, Humanity, The War on Stupid

Guardian – ‘Killing themselves was unnecessary. But it certainly is a good PR move’ : “It does sound like this is part of a strategy – in that they don’t value their own lives, and they certainly don’t value ours; and they use suicide bombings as a tactic,” Colleen Graffy, the deputy assistant secretary of state for public diplomacy, told BBC’s Newshour yesterday. “Taking their own lives was not necessary, but it certainly is a good PR move.” On Saturday, the camp’s commander, Navy Rear Admiral Harry Harris, said the suicides were an al-Qaida tactic. “They have no regard for life, neither ours nor their own. I believe this was not an act of desperation, but an act of asymmetrical warfare waged against us,” he said.

BBC – Guantanamo suicides a ‘PR move’: Speaking to the BBC’s Newshour programme, Ms Graffy, Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Public Diplomacy, said the three men did not value their lives nor the lives of those around them. Detainees had access to lawyers, received mail and had the ability to write to families, so had other means of making protests, she said, and it was hard to see why the men had not protested about their situation.

The Herald – Suicides at Camp X-ray a publicity stunt, says US official: The three had taken part previously in extended hunger strikes and been force-fed. They all left suicide notes, but no details were made public.

Ignore for the moment the shocking inhumanity of this position and the bald-faced lie that these men had not protested about their situation, and take a moment to ponder on this message:

These men committed suicide, so what further* proof does one need that they are suicide bombers?

(*Not that the Bush administration has come up with any other proof of their guilt these past few years…. but surely their presence in Guantanamo Bay is proof in itself.)

Related bloggage:
Another Guantanomaly
But… but… but… we gave them Happy Meals!

Fresh bloggage:
Daily Kos – Suicides an ‘Act of War’, Says US Admiral
Not Little England – Incredulity
BSSC – The Anomaly

UPDATE – BBC – Dead detainee ‘was to be freed’: One of the three men who committed suicide at the US prison camp at Guantanamo Bay was due to be released – but did not know it, says a US lawyer. Mark Denbeaux, who represents some of the foreign detainees said the man was among 141 prisoners due to be released. He said the prisoner was not told because US officials had not decided which country he would be sent to.

(Well, obviously they’ll need to review the other 140 cases. If someone earmarked for release is capable of an act of asymmetrical warfare, then there’s something profoundly wrong with the system.)








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