the blog of DC Drinking Liberally

August 11, 2005

The Psychic Republicans Network


Bill O’Reilly, February 4, 2003, speaking to Jeremy Glick, whose father died in the World Trade Center and who signed an antiwar ad:

I’m sure your beliefs are sincere, but what upsets me is I don’t think your father would be approving of this. […] I don’t think he’d be equating this country as a terrorist nation as you are.

Michelle Malkin, August 8, 2005, writing about Cindy Sheehan, whose son died in Iraq and who is holding a vigil near Bush’s ranch:

I can’t imagine Army Spc. Casey Sheehan would stand for his mother’s crazy accusations that he was murdered by his commander-in-chief, rather than the Iraqi terrorists who ambushed his convoy.

Double Super Secret Walk for Freedom


In case you don’t already have plans for Sunday Sept 11 at 10:00 am, walk do not run to your local pentagon website: (DoD News)

As part of the Department of Defense effort to commemorate Sept. 11, 2001, Secretary of Defense Donald H. Rumsfeld today announced the first-ever “America Supports You Freedom Walk” to remember the victims of Sept. 11, 2001, to honor U.S. troops and veterans, and to highlight the value of freedom.

The “America Supports You Freedom Walk” will begin at 10 a.m., EDT, Sunday, Sept. 11, and follow a two-mile route from the Pentagon to Arlington National Cemetery, across Memorial Bridge, passing several national memorials and ending on the National Mall in Washington, D.C. At the conclusion of the walk, participants will be invited to a concert by country music singer and songwriter Clint Black. [ed: Wayne Newton must have been booked already]

The “America Supports You Freedom Walk” is free and open to the public. Individuals interested in walking must register to participate at www.americasupportsyou.mil . Registration closes at 10 a.m. EDT on Friday, Sept. 9, 2005.

So you vund to visit der Mall, Herr Hippo. May I requezt your papers, please?

August 10, 2005

Torture Not As Bad As Adultery, Apparently


A strange story on the front page of today’s Post says something about Pentagon priorities:

In a rare move, the Army relieved a four-star general [Kevin P. Byrnes] of his command amid allegations that he had an extramarital affair with a civilian, Army officials said yesterday. […]

A spokesman said Army officials could find no case of another four-star general being relieved of duty in modern times. […]

The Army has been hurt over the past year by detainee-abuse cases and has been accused of not going after top officers allegedly involved in such abuse. Army officials said relieving Byrnes was meant to show the public that the service takes issues of integrity seriously.

There’s got to be something else going on here. Regardless, this action isn’t going to do much to demonstrate seriousness about holding officers accountable for what goes on under their command.



Tell Huffington’s Toast I sent you:

Blogfather: I have with me tonight Ann Althouse. Mrs. Ann Althouse.

Ms. Althouse: Ms.

Blogfather: You have a new theory about the blogosphere.

Ms. Althouse: Can I just say here Glenn for one moment that I have a new theory about the blogosphere?

Blogfather: Er… exactly. (he gestures but she does not say anything) What is it?

Ms. Althouse: Where? (looks round)

Blogfather: No, no. Your new theory.

Ms. Althouse: Oh, what is my theory?

Blogfather: Yes.

Ms. Althouse: Oh what is my theory that it is. Well Glenn you may well ask me what is my theory.

Blogfather: I am asking.

Ms. Althouse: Good for you. My word yes. Well Glenn, what is it that it is - this theory of mine. Well, this is what it is - my theory that I have, that is to say, which is mine, is mine…


I Take on Barry Sussman


At Nieman Watchdog, Barry Sussman insists that Throat/Felt’s role was minor, as was the essential crime of Watergate:

Looked at in this light, the Watergate break-in was just a routine raid by White House thugs who thought they were above the law and who couldn’t distinguish tough politics from crime. The FBI, including Mark Felt, also was deep into illegal activities, infiltrating antiwar groups and at times prodding them to actions, including bombings, that they might not have committed on their own. In 1980, Felt was convicted for his role.

About as bad as anything else was the cover-up. It’s not known whether Nixon was aware of the break-in in advance, but it is clear that he personally directed the cover-up with its hush money payments, fake White House investigations, protestations of innocence, inveigling of the CIA and FBI into compliance (at least for a while), and assistance from members of both political parties on Capitol Hill to block inquiries.

As it happens, I’m reading All The President’s Men at the moment. Which leaves the reader with a much different impression. First of all, Deep Throat is mentioned about every 5 to 10 pages. His role was often confirming Woodward’s theories, occasionally being a second source. But it’s Woodward’s midnight encounters with Felt in an isolated garage that form the dramatic backbone of the book. Now Sussman’s impression may have been different from Woodward and Bernstein, but Sussman is being overly dismissive.

The other thing, and again it may just be Woodward, Bernstein, and Sussman weren’t on the same page, if that’s the expression, but the bit about “the Watergate break-in was just a routine raid by White House thugs” sharply disagrees with All the President’s Men. The break in was what got prosecuted, but the bigger issue was that CReeP had an organization of at least 50 people whose mission it was to subvert the electoral process. A lot of what CReeP engaged wasn’t illegal, but if the pattern of activities had been known, the public would have been outraged.

As an example, it was the job of one CReePer to hire rabble-rousers to disrupt Democratic rallies. The job of another to pose as a Democratic organizer and routinely change meeting times and places. The job of another to order unwanted pizzas, flowers, and caterers and send them to rallies, COD. The people on Nixon’s enemies were wire-tapped- that probably was illegal- but for whatever reason, the prosecution focused on the Watergate break-in.

This is more than just a historical question, of course. The investigation of L’affaire de Rove may lead us to understand Bush/Nixon parallels.

August 9, 2005

Wesley Clark Fundraiser Thursday


If you’ve been wanting to give Wes Clark a piece of your mind — and at least $100 of your money — now’s your chance. John Oldfield, who I met at DCDL last week, tells me Clark is holding a fundraiser in town Thursday, August 11, for WesPAC, and according to the invitation, “The General will be discussing his travel plans for the 2006 election cycle and seeking your ideas.”

WesPAC has two objectives:

  • To elect Democrats to the White House and Congress in order to implement new policies that will restore our nation’s security and prosperity, comprehensively address the threats facing America and our allies while respecting civil liberties, and replace the current unwise policies established by this Republican Administration and Congress.
  • To provide leadership on U.S. national security issues and develop new, innovative solutions to the challenges facing America at home and abroad.

For more information on the PAC, see securingamerica.com. If you’re interested in the attending the cocktail reception (5:30–7) or the dinner following (which I think requires a higher donation) contact John at 917-667-4323 or joldfield{at}catalystacquisition.com.

August 8, 2005

The “Truth Tour” Will Out


Like me, you may have recalled hearing about a “Truth Tour” pulled together to bypass the MSM, and finally hear the Good News coming out of Iraq. I had wondered what had become of them, and why I still hadn’t heard the Good News. Now I think I understand why.

The “Truth Tour” was a group of right-wing radio hosts and personalities who toured Iraqi Army bases July 7 to July 17. The Tour was organized by a group called Move America Forward co-chaired by Melanie Morgan and Howard Kaloogian: (MediaTransparancy.org)

August 7, 2005

New Drinking Liberally Chapter in Arlington


The approach of the 2005 election (now 93 days away) seems to be sparking the formation of Drinking Liberally chapters in Virginia. Last week I was able to tell my family about a new chapter in Richmond, and Monday one launches in Arlington, at the Rhodeside Grill near the Court House Metro. This chapter is so new that its info isn’t yet on the national DL site, but presumably that will be rectified soon.

If you’ve been thinking about attending DL but don’t like going into the city, or if you have a conflict on Thursdays, now you no longer have those excuses. And if you’ve been going to DCDL but feel that one night a week just isn’t enough for you, now you can go to both chapters!

Below is the message from John Craig, the chapter founder:


August 6, 2005

Another Anniversary, Another Vacation


Besides the historic anniversary I mentioned in my last post, today is the fourth anniversary of the President’s Daily Brief titled “Bin Ladin Determined To Strike in US”. Read Faiz at Think Progress for the similarities between August 6, 2001, and August 6, 2005.

One similarity is that Bush is on yet another of his all-month August vacations in Crawford. And they said John Kerry acted French. Billmon at Whiskey Bar has one of his trademark quote compilations contrasting Bush’s vacation time with that of other presidents and that of the typical American worker.

The “Arm Osama” Amendment


On this 60th anniversary of the bombing of Hiroshima, it seems appropriate to consider what we’re doing to prevent nuclear bombs going off in cities in the future. We already know that the president isn’t particularly concerned about what’s happening with nuclear materials and has recently promoted a guy who’s sabotaged attempts to control their spread. But how about the Congress?

Billmon at Whiskey Bar points out a Washington Post article about a provision in the recently passed energy bill (see also Hilzoy at Obsidian Wings). North Carolina senator Richard Burr (R) managed to slip in a passage relaxing restrictions on export of weapons-grade uranium. The “Arm Osama Amendment”, as Billmon calls it, was apparently inserted to help a Canadian producer of medical isotopes, one that “already has enough highly enriched uranium to make one or two Hiroshima-size bombs” but doesn’t have the security requirements of US weapons facilities. Billmon continues:

… I strongly urge everyone to read the entire Washington Post article and read it carefully. That way, when the day comes for you lean out your bathroom window and wonder: “How did that funny shaped cloud get there?” you’ll already know the answer. And as you watch the bones in your hand become visible through your skin, and marvel at the sight of your child’s hair instantly catching on fire, you can, in the brief moment before the shock wave hits, thank the good people at the Council on Radionuclides and Radiopharmaceuticals for helping make such wonders possible….

Unfortunately, putting campaign donations above the security of the American people isn’t limited to Republicans. Sen. Blanche Lincoln, a Democrat from Arkansas, cosponsored the amendment.

The insane way bills are put together and passed — thousands of pages put out only hours before the vote, full of irrelevant provisions, with no chance for review — may one day lead to worse than the usual wasting of billions of dollars. Congress has got to get the process under control, but it’s hard to imagine how that will happen.


DCDL is a blog by Washington, DC-area members of Drinking Liberally. Opinions expressed are the writers’, not those of Drinking Liberally, which provides no funding or other support for this blog.

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