Your President Speaks!

Today, at theWhite House, during this morning’s surprise presser. Recent Days Have Been A Moment I think recent days have been a moment that the country can be proud of. That Is My Hopes My hope, of course, is that Russia is a country which understands there needs to be checks and balances, and free and fair elections, and a vibrant press; that they understand Western values based upon human rights and human dignity are values that will lead to a better country. That’s my hopes. Met What Now? I think it’s good that we ended up with a spending … Continue reading Your President Speaks!

Happy Democrat Photo: Edwards Edition

His statement on the NOLA housing sitch: Chapel Hill, North Carolina – Today, Senator Edwards released the following statement on the New Orleans City Council’s approval of the HUD plan to begin demolishing public housing in New Orleans : “I am disappointed in the decision today by the New Orleans City Council to approve the demolition permits that HUD needs to begin demolition of public housing in New Orleans . As I’ve said before, knocking down historic and livable housing that withstood the winds of Katrina is counterproductive to the goal of giving residents a home to which to return. … Continue reading Happy Democrat Photo: Edwards Edition

NOLA Housing Vote

The New Orleans City Council will be voting on the demolition of several public housing developments today. The meeting can be seenLIVE HERE. Right now the meeting has not begun as protestors are standing and chanting and the Council head is asking security to the enforce council’s rules. UPDATE: They are still trying to start the meeting. Asking for people to take their seats according to council rules or they will be escorted out of the council chambers. Continued calls for sherrifs to enforce those rules and take people out so they can begin the council meeting. FYI–The live feed … Continue reading NOLA Housing Vote

Columnwhoring: Election-Year Resolutions

Link: 3. Avoid entirely any mention of various candidates’ sex lives. Mostly so as to avoid having to dip my brain in bleach. I know there are people out there who find Mike Huckabee and Mitt Romney physically attractive, but I’m not one of them, and if I have to ponder too much on the conduct of their privates, I might go blind. Unless the candidate’s diddling ended up on the public dime (as it did with Rudy Giuliani, who used taxpayer money to pay a cop to chauffer his mistress around), I say find yourself a fellow consenting adult … Continue reading Columnwhoring: Election-Year Resolutions

Newspapers are failing, running out of money, and being devastated by the Internet

But you couldn’t pay anybody currently blathering on about that on insider panels to talk about this: Tribune Co. Chairman and Chief Executive Dennis J. FitzSimons is expected to announce his resignation as early as today, a person close to the company said Tuesday. The resignation would be the first departure of a top Tribune executive as the company prepares to go private under the leadership of Chicago businessman Sam Zell. FitzSimons, 57, a 25-year veteran of Tribune, is in line to walk away with as much as $40 million, depending on the date on which he chooses to depart, … Continue reading Newspapers are failing, running out of money, and being devastated by the Internet

Your President Speaks!

Today, at theWhite House. He Who Smelt It Because this dependence harms us economically through high and volatile prices at the gas pump; dependence creates pollution and contributes to greenhouse gas admissions [sic]. The Global War On Subjects Continues Proposed an alternative fuel standard earlier this year. What We Have Got To Expand If we’re serious about making sure we grow our economy and deal with greenhouse gases, we have got to expand nuclear power. Continue reading Your President Speaks!

Today On Holden’s Obsession With The Gaggle

Dana Felt Compelled To Respond To Her Misreading OfThe Times

Q Dana, can you tell us why you decided to put out this statement this morning about The New York Times story? Why did you feel compelled to respond?

MS. PERINO: Well, the subhead of the newspaper indicated that the White House — well, it says the White House role was wider than it said, implying that I had either changed my story, or I or somebody else at the White House had misled the public. And that is not true. And I heard now from The New York Times that they will retract that headline, and they are going to run a correction tomorrow.

Q But the underlying facts, four White House lawyers who are named knew about the destruction or the intent to destroy the tapes beforehand. Are you disputing that?

MS. PERINO: I have not commented on that — and when we are in that —

Q (Inaudible.)

MS. PERINO: Helen, I’m going to finish this answer. The White House has not commented on anybody’s involvement or knowledge, save for me telling everybody that the President had no recollection of being briefed on the existence or the destruction of the tapes before he was briefed by General Hayden. After that, I did not comment on anybody’s knowledge or involvement. So if somebody has information that contradicts the one thing that I’ve said, then this would be true — but it’s not. And that is why I asked for a correction and The New York Times is going to correct it.

Q So you’re disputing the characterization in that —

MS. PERINO: Absolutely, it’s wrong.

Q — not the underlying facts of the story.

MS. PERINO: I’m not commenting on the underlying facts of the story.


Q You’re the one who’s drawing the implication. Would you have been happy if the subhead had read, “White House role was lighter than previously understood”?

MS. PERINO: I have not — what it says is that I had changed my story, and I have not.

Q It doesn’t say that.

MS. PERINO: It — that’s how I took it, and I am not —

Q It does not say —

MS. PERINO: — the only one.

Q It simply says that the White House does not comment on this, then it goes on to —

MS. PERINO: That is not — that’s not what it says in its headline, Bill. And there was editorial decision that led to this subheadline, because if they didn’t want to make this point to try to say that the White House had misled the public, why would they put it in bold face above the fold, and then not — and then it’s not supported by any of the facts or the contradictory statements in the article.

Q But that’s very difficult to judge when you won’t give us the facts.

Continue reading “Today On Holden’s Obsession With The Gaggle”

Iraqis United By Hatred Of America

Good news from Iraq, viaDan Froomkin. Karen DeYoung writes in The Washington Post: “Iraqis of all sectarian and ethnic groups believe that the U.S. military invasion is the primary root of the violent differences among them, and see the departure of ‘occupying forces’ as the key to national reconciliation, according to focus groups conducted for the U.S. military last month. “That is good news, according to a military analysis of the results. At the very least, analysts optimistically concluded, the findings indicate that Iraqis hold some ‘shared beliefs’ that may eventually allow them to surmount the divisions that have led … Continue reading Iraqis United By Hatred Of America

FEMA and transparency

This is not surprising… A week after Hurricane Katrina, a senior official with the Federal Emergency Management Agency in charge of streamlining the flow of disaster aid issued a directive that would have helped a staggering 1,029 rebuilding projects and $5.3 billion in funds cut through the agency’s infamous red tape. But in a decision critics say led to losing precious time in the post-storm recovery, her three-day deadline to clear projects through a final bureaucratic hurdle was rejected. The rebuilding of schools, roads, hospitals, firehouses and other desperately needed infrastructure was stalled for months of interagency reviews that ended … Continue reading FEMA and transparency

They Learned From The Master

Our pals inPakistan. Pakistan’s military and intelligence agencies, apparently trying to avoid acknowledging an elaborate secret detention system, have quietly set free nearly 100 men suspected of links to terrorism, few of whom were charged, human rights groups and lawyers here say. Those released, they say, are some of the nearly 500 Pakistanis presumed to have disappeared into the hands of the Pakistani intelligence agencies cooperating with Washington’s fight against terrorism since 2001. No official reason has been given for the releases, but as pressure has mounted to bring the cases into the courts, the government has decided to jettison … Continue reading They Learned From The Master

Today On Holden’s Obsession With The Gaggle

Dana Keeps Mum On All Things CIA

Q Dana, is the White House taking any steps to make sure the CIA does not destroy any tapes — any more tapes while these — judges look at things, Congress looks at things, the CIA — is the White House taking any steps to make sure there’s no more destruction?

MS. PERINO: I’m going to refer you to the Justice Department, who is working on the preliminary inquiry with the CIA.

Q Okay. You’ve previously not commented on the CIA tapes case by saying that you want to — you don’t to interfere with any investigations, you want to make sure they move forward. Why then on Friday did the Justice Department all of a sudden say they’re not going to cooperate with congressional investigations, any of the oversight that’s going on on the Hill?

MS. PERINO: I think that’s a question that is best put to the Justice Department, and the Justice Department will be able to answer for you.


Q One last on that. Republican Congressman Pete Hoekstra is not satisfied and saying he’d be onboard with subpoenas — they may be voted on in the House Intelligence Committee as early as today. Would the White House comply with subpoenas if they come up in the CIA tapes case? Or would you, like you’ve done in other cases, not want to comply with them?

MS. PERINO: I’m going to refer you to the Justice Department.

Q But if they actually issued subpoenas to the White House, not the Justice Department, would you comply with that?

MS. PERINO: I’m going to refer you to the Justice Department on that.

Continue reading “Today On Holden’s Obsession With The Gaggle”

Your Mom, On Demand

Why, it’s almost like they notice when you win: In a setback for the White House, Senate Democrats on Monday put off until at least next month any decision on whether to give legal protection to the phone carriers that helped with the National Security Agency’s eavesdropping program. The Bush administration had pushed for immediate passage of legislation to grant immunity to the phone companies as part of a broader expansion of the N.S.A.’s wiretapping authorities. But that will not happen now. Via theDodd squad. A setback for the White House. The 24 percent White House, may I remind us … Continue reading Your Mom, On Demand

RETURN of FISA Debate Crack Van

Update: Reid pulled the bill until Jan. 1. Read more at the Dodd site. And lest you think this is just a temporary reprieve, Dodd said in his closing remarks, if they come back with a bill that still includes retroactive immunity, in January, he’ll stand up and cockpunch them again, so don’t even think about it. (I may have made that last bit up a little.) Thanks to everyone who stopped by for the van today! Call your senators over the break, and ask them to stand with Chris Dodd. A. Continue reading RETURN of FISA Debate Crack Van

Investigating Alphonso…Another Heckuva Katrina Contract Story

The Bush years have given us so many stories rich in irony. Here is one such story. Last weekNational Journal updated the story theybroke in October of HUD Secretary Alphonso Jackson being under investigation for possibly lining up a $485,000 contract at HUD-controlled Housing Authority of New Orleans (HANO) for a friend and golfing buddy named William Hairston. National Journal reports the investigation is heating up with several senior HUD officials and current or former executives at HANO having been questioned. The investigation is apparently“focusing on Jackson’s ties to William Hairston, a stucco contractor from Hilton Head Island, S.C.” New … Continue reading Investigating Alphonso…Another Heckuva Katrina Contract Story

Just Ask

Joe Lieberman’s available to help you: On the other hand, if all it takes is asking for Lieberman’s support for an endorsement, then everyone should get on the phone now, call Lieberman’s office at (202) 224-4041, and ask for his support on, well, anything. You want support for your run for president of your local ACLU chapter? Call Joe. You want a new job or maybe a committee chair in some organization? Call Joe. How about getting your kids to like vegetables? Joe’ll support you. Seriously. He’s waiting for your call right now. And obviously, all you have to do … Continue reading Just Ask

Michgan Gets A Pony

Nice. More than six in 10 Michiganders say George W. Bush’s presidency will go down as either below average or among the worst ever, according to The Detroit Free Press/Local 4 Michigan Poll. And among the 62% who say Bush won’t be remembered favorably, 37% say his two terms will go down as among the worst, according to the poll conducted Monday through Wednesday of 800 Michigan adults. [snip] Four percent of those polled said Bush would rank as one of the best presidents, 9% ranked him above average and 25% said he was average. [snip] The poll also showed … Continue reading Michgan Gets A Pony

Tomorrow: Dodd For The Win

Baby, baby, baby, talk hard: For more than five years, AT&T and other telephone companies broke the law and violated their customers’ privacy rights by sending billions of private domestic internet and telephone communications and records to the National Security Agency. Now, after months of pressure from the Bush Administration, the full Senate is poised to grant retroactive immunity to these companies, which would effectively ensure that the full extent of their complicty will never be known. The critical make-or-break vote is being held Monday– contact your Senator immediately and urge them to oppose telecom immunity! Senate lawmakers must support … Continue reading Tomorrow: Dodd For The Win

Um, Sovereignty?

What’s that? Iraqi leaders complained Monday that Turkey had not coordinated with Baghdad before sending dozens of warplanes to bomb Kurdish rebel targets in northern Iraq — the largest aerial attack in years against the outlawed separatist group. In Turkey, a U.S. Embassy official in Ankara said Washington was informed about the operation. “It was a Turkish operation, it was a Turkish decision. We were informed,” the official told The Associated Press on condition of anonymity, as the official was not authorized to speak to the media. The Iraqi parliament condemned the bombing, calling it an “outrageous” violation of Iraq’s … Continue reading Um, Sovereignty?

Under Your Bed

You have no dominion here: The administration argued it was not obligated to preserve the videotapes and told U.S. District Judge Henry H. Kennedy that demanding information about them “could potentially complicate the ongoing efforts to arrive at a full factual understanding of the matter.” Thing is, people bought this shit back in 2002, which is when I first became aware of it. People bought this shit because hey, you never know, and these guys might not be completely full of shit, and despite our long national nightmares with Nixon and Iran-Contra people still kind of figured there was a … Continue reading Under Your Bed

Take That

Youmay recall was forced to remove a YouTube video, which NOLA high school students made, after the organization was threatened with a lawsuit. I lovethis…the video is back up: on Friday reposted to YouTube a satirical video filmed by high school students that is critical of the relationship between the American Society of Civil Engineers and the Army Corps of Engineers, after the group was promised free representation by two local law firms in the event it is sued. “We have something to say today to the president of the American Society of Civil Engineers,” said President … Continue reading Take That

Governor Goodhair For VEEP!

Rick “Goodhair” Perry, thecloseted-gay governor of my native state of Texas, really wants to be the GOP vice presidential nominee in 2008. Perry wants the VEEP slot so bad that he is willing to throw his long-time pal and mentor Chimpy W. McFailureunder the bus. Texas Gov. Rick Perry aired unusually pointed criticism of President Bush while stumping in Iowa for Rudy Giuliani for president last week. Perry predicted too that if Democrats prevail next year, the war on terrorism will return to U.S. soil. [snip] Perry, responding to a party guest’s suggestion that federal spending could kill candidates with … Continue reading Governor Goodhair For VEEP!

Should have seen that coming

Yesterday Iposted on FEMA’s disclosure that it will now conduct air quality tests of trailers and I questioned if the once postponed testing of FEMA trailers would occur even now. I am nowconvinced it will… Gillette [of MS Sierra Club] also raises concerns about why FEMA — after having promised it would undertake tests back in July — waited five months to get started: …[I]t is troubling that FEMA/CDC have decided to undertake this testing at the time of year when formaldehyde emissions would be expected to be at their lowest levels. Formaldehyde outgassing increases with heat or humidity, so … Continue reading Should have seen that coming

It’s A Start

Get it on record. If we don’t torture, why should he veto? The administration particularly opposes restricting the CIA to interrogation methods approved by the military in 2006. That document prohibits forcing detainees to be naked, perform sexual acts, or pose in a sexual manner; placing hoods or sacks over detainees’ heads or duct tape over their eyes; beating, shocking, or burning detainees; threatening them with military dogs; exposing them to extreme heat or cold; conducting mock executions; depriving them of food, water, or medical care; and waterboarding. Waterboarding is a particularly harsh form of interrogation that involves strapping down … Continue reading It’s A Start