September 26, 2007
Basic Palmocracy Do's and Don'ts
My Mother often tells the story how, some 60 years ago, a local small town official, to explain politics to her said, "When it comes to politics, its like this. Spit in one hand and put money in the other and see which way their head starts tilting."
Think of the upturned palms in Washington. Think of the K Street money machinery. Think of the billions we hand out to dictators and despots worldwide wide who align with us or at least give good lip service.
The proper term for this form of government is a "Palm-ocracy."
The goal in Iraq was to form a 'palmocracy' with Chalabi as the bursar in chief. It's the American way. Why then does everybody from Rep. Waxman, the Nation magazine and its liberal sisterhood and the blogosphere go ape because a few billion $$ are missing in Iraq? It makes no sense to me. The $$ failure in Iraq is not that a truck load or two of $$$ are missing but that BushCo failed to to find a home for this moola which had any sustainable political or military weight to it. If it's ten billion a week to fight the war and accrue dead troops, what is the fuss that a few days cash flow went missing in a hemorrhaged buyout?
This thinking gives rise to the following timeless lessons encapsulated in 'Rules for Invading Sovereignties' from "Palmocracies, Foreign & Domestic" the remorsefully edited edition, 'Wolfowitz Cheney Press.'
Never invade a country to promote aligning interests unless you can, with certainty, determine who you can effectively bribe.
Also, never attempt to occupy a country with two Popes.
Imagine if Bush Cheney Kristol had succeeded
Worse than all the losses to America from the criminal incompetence of Kristol/Bush/Cheney etc was that they set out to enthrone Chalabi as the new Iraq leader. It turned out that he is thick as thieves with Iran and simply 'played' these guys. I mean, like, if their plan had come to fruition we would have been even worse off. It boggles the mind.
September 24, 2007
Bush Cheney Legacy in 100 Words
At the Global Affairs group blog, Barnett Rubin imagines what he would say about accountability and the Bush administration if he were a politician rather than an analyst:
' The Bush-Cheney administration has surrendered much of Afghanistan to the Taliban and much of Pakistan to al-Qaida. They have turned most of Iraq over to Iran, creating the very danger over which they now threaten another disastrous war; they have strained the U.S. Armed Forces to the point of exhaustion, turned the Defense Department over to private contractors, the Justice Department over to the Republican National Committee, and the national debt over to foreign creditors, while leading a party whose single most basic belief is supposed to be that individuals must take personal responsibility for their actions.
And they dare to lecture us on national security?'
Then Rubin restates the case from an analytical point of view. It is a beautiful thing to behold. Read the whole thing.
I copied the above verbatim from Informed Comment, Juan Cole's most respected blog (Mon. 9.24.07.)
September 21, 2007
Dollar tanks on lower U.S. interest rates
Jane and John Doe must now pay to bail out the culprits.
When I gas up my vehicle I will be paying extra because the dollar's buying power has taken a hit.
The financial types that made the suspect mortgages walk off with big commissions from making the loans, packaging the loans, reselling the loans and repackaging and reselling the loans until the "Ring around the Mortgages' game came full stop.
Jane and John Doe now have to pay for greedy, shoddy asset allocations in the financial sector not only by having margins on their next loan increased but by watching the greenback crash world wide as government 'of the banks, by the banks' lowers interest rates to bail out the thieves.
Capitalism spills more uneconomically useful cash annually than the combined unfunded requirements of social security and Medicare. Place a one one hundredth of a percent VAT tax on non consumer capital flows so the Doe family can eat at the same trough as the CEOs and their extended family.
Allah or Ally?
The story's told that once upon a time George Bush, Rummy and Darth Vader happened to visit a Mosque at evening prayers.
Rummy turns to Cheney and says, "Why does the President seem so happy?"
Cheney faintly lights up his malicious leer and says, "He thinks they're repeating ally, ..ally."
September 17, 2007
Bush denies possibility of 'victory' in Iraq
That in itself is newsworthy.
GOP jettisons concept of victory.
Senator Craig's stall becomes historic site. Placard?
U.S. voters and celebrity addict mavens are seeking out Senator Craig's hallowed stall in the Minneapolis Airport.
Bring me your huddled masses,...leering to be free...tapping into the roots of celebrity.....BBC News
THE BUSH PRESIDENCY IS A BOON TO MANKIND
The more he infuriates foes, allies, terrorists and disrupts oil markets, spreading fear and dismay about our planet the better off all us opposable-thumbers are.
At $3.00 or $5.00 per gallon of gas, gasoline consumption plummets, carbon dioxide levels abate, global warming reverses, the United States gets a new manufacturing gig for non hydrocarbon technology and in the meantime sis and junior along with their parents are reintroduced to pedal locomotion (bikes and walking) and our 'Double Size It' obesity crises is history.
One man's 'Incompetence' is another man's 'Tool.'
God bless George (his wonders to behold) 'Walker' Bush
(reprint from May 2006)
September 12, 2007
Cloture this ! Time for Iraqi War surtax.
Time to put GOP money where their strategic mouth is.
A net blogger, "Larkrise" makes a key point re American continuation in Iraq....."but I suspect that the loss of any financial comfort will be the only means to effect substantive change for the better."
I agree and see a potentially win win solution.
The GOP wants to continue the Iraq war at its present level.
The GOP is the party of corporate and affluent interests.
Ergo, morally, ethically and economically sound policy dictates that a war surtax be enacted.
If 130,000 plus troops for years is valid and beneficial for America's strategic interests, it follows that today's voters and leaders, and not tomorrow's middle class or children, should step up and fund this policy.
U.S. National Interest in Iraq left Undefended?
We and the Brits have left the oil rich part of Iraq and its vital international port for shipments, i.e. the most important part of Iraq, to Iranian influenced warring bands of Shiites.
Elsewhere our troops are attacked one hundred and seventy five times a day.
(177.8 attacks a day on troops Reuters 7.20.07)
What in the holy christ are we exactly doing there? Defending the contractors in non National Interest territory???
If we're staying in Iraq in such force to defend the Emerald Palace when we've already lost control over most areas of strategic interest, that's like defending your ego when you're in quicksand. Or like getting a boob job with the last of your cash when the Doc says you've got cancer.
September 10, 2007
Defense Secretary Gates has been "disappeared"
Two or three times since Sec Gates took office he has been caught out for simply telling the truth. In each instance he clearly made truthful statements that were at odds with the White Houses propaganda delivery for such facts in question. In each instance he took my breath away for such rogue behavior. I laughed but I also felt concern for the hostility which was certain to befall him.
I don't remember the exact details, but one instance concerned when he solo voce put the kibosh on huge extended terms for our troops.
Now as Petraeus and Crocker spin the facts in Iraq as good political aparatchiks in the service of whatever Bush/Cheney are trying to achieve, America's Secretary of Defense is cut out of the loop.
Telling the unvarnished truth in this White House has morphed into treason, an act of deceit for which one becomes 'disappeared.'
Finally the 'Ghost of Arafat' appears
It seemed such an important point that I screamed at all the "missing-the-point" pundits and deemed myself most wise. Then my 'New Yorker' arrived, making the exact same point complete with voting polls, having been conceived, researched, written and published prior to my efforts. I laughed out loud.
Of course I finally succumbed to actually writing a letter which without fanfare appeared, holy Toledo, published by the Cape Cod Times. Then, double holy Toledos, the Kerry campaign asked if they could use this letter and it seemingly morphed into the slogan, "We want a president who is a uniter, not one who says he's a uniter." This was used by Ted, Hilary, John, Barack and others at the Dem convention 0f 2004. Thus the blogger/writer was born who is still having fun, although now actually writing my thoughts before waiting for others or events to confirm such thoughts.
In this vein, my own, self aggrandizing favorite has been my post of January 2005 circa when Arafat died. It seemed clear that America needed a highly regarded Sunni leader that would both hold out his palm for American lucre and make political accommodation. Back then, Rummy said "It's not like you can just pick up a phone and call these guys."
Now the Military is making nice with perceived bloody handed scoundrels, which as I wrote, was always an eventual necessity.
(excerpt "The Ghost of Arafat" Jan. 2005):
The ghost of Arafat will appear from the Sunni side and George B. to his enormous bile-choking displeasure will have to deal. Were that it were otherwise but this is written.
Fielding one per cent of the Sunni fighting-age men as active insurgents/freedom fighters with three percent as cadre (40,000) creates a stalemate. They can not dislodge us and our Shia forces nor can we pacify them.
Personally I would find this leader (or group) now and begin the next phase. Offer them administrative control of electric and water reconstruction projects. They create no-kill, no-maim zones, implement the projects, Halliburton yes, Halliburton no, who cares, and we release the money on a quasi 'completion' basis.
This gambit lacks all pride and ego but we do get to stay a while.
Sarge might say "Light em if you got em," for a change.
September 05, 2007
Iraqi tribal structure constitutes Mid East democracy?
The GOP think tanks are busy working on a new paradigm.
It turns out, they say, that the predominant Iraqi Tribal political structure is amazingly akin to a/our Democratic structure.
Ergo, should the Sunni sheikhs we are now championing as paragonic leaders prevail in a pan-Iraq consolidation, it should be argued that Bush has brought democracy to the Middle East.
Such a spiritually tingling success, such a great teaching, the best teaching for all sentient beings.
Rock, Paper, Toilets
Rocks breaks scissors, paper covers rock, scissors cut paper.
In recent national elections prior to Mark Foley, the religious right and the GOP operatives that manipulate the gay hating right have owned a significant edge in votes when the aura of gays, queers, marriage is invoked.
Thanks to the unveiling of Foley, Larry Craig, Ted Haggard and other lesser public toilet and non public toilet GOP sexual Lotharios, the 'gay, queer, marriage' issue is lost as an advantage to the GOP.
This is positively awesome.
Senator Craig is now reconsidering his resignation. Please take Senator Specter's advice Mr. Craig and stay in the Senate while you battle out in public your relative criminality and your relative gayness.
That would be most appreciated. (My heart felt thanks thanks to Senator Specter, by the way!!) This GOP' gifting of the voting edge on the 'values' issue is also positively awesome. Thanks guys.
Read Shaun at Kiko's House
Good recap, great writing!