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Fiscal Responsibility

Echidne tells us of The Magic of Privatization, wherein the Congress and this administration have decided that rather than hire the extra staff needed to collect delinquent tax accounts at a cost of 3¢ on the dollar, they would rather outsource the job to collection agencies charging 22¢ to 24¢ per dollar collected.

And this makes sense because?

August 21, 2006   7 Comments

Still Supporting The Troops

Commander Kirk Lippold didn’t receive a briefing saying that al Qaeda was determined to attack his ship and the investigation cleared him and his crew of wrongdoing in the attack on the USS Cole, but he’s being held accountable:

The attack killed 17 sailors and nearly sank the destroyer in Aden harbor, Yemen. A Navy investigation concluded in 2001 that Cmdr. Kirk Lippold and his crew probably could not have prevented the attack and should not be punished.

But in a written statement Monday, the Navy said Secretary Donald C. Winter concluded after reviewing the matter that Lippold’s actions before the attack on October 12, 2000, “did not meet the high standard” expected of commanding officers.

What about the high standards for Presidents or Secretaries of Defense? What about the generals responsible for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan? What about the CIA director who signed off on the Iraq intelligence?

August 21, 2006   7 Comments

The Shrubbery Can Kiss My Grits

Update: I forgot to mention – for those of you who watch TV, tonight and tomorrow HBO will air the four hour Spike Lee documentary When the Levees Broke: A Requiem in Four Acts. The entire film will be shown in full on August 29th.

So today the Shrubbery tells the press that the Feds have supplied all of the money that’s needed, so it is the local governments that are responsible for the slow pace of recovery on the Gulf Coast.

Well, folks, it will shortly be two years since hurricane Ivan came roaring ashore, and local governments haven’t been able to even finish disposing of the debris because they can’t get a decision from FEMA as to the procedure they need to follow to receive Federal funding for the clean-up.

Ivan hit just before the 2004 election, one of the 4 hurricanes to hit Florida, so FEMA and the Shrubbery made a lot of promises that lasted until after the election. When it finally came time to present bills to the Feds, all of a sudden there were additional requirements and paperwork. Extra layers of management sprang up that seemingly had no purpose other than to slow or stop the process.

[Read more →]

August 21, 2006   Comments Off on The Shrubbery Can Kiss My Grits

Women Can’t Teach?

This isn’t Alabama, it’s Watertown, New York: Sunday school teacher dumped for being female. With 54 years of experience, this clown has the gall to say she is not qualified to teach?! What are the chances this clown could have read the Bible if a woman hadn’t taught him to read in elementary school?

Here are a couple of things that women have taught us lately that men seemed to have missed:

“There are no hereditary Kings in America and no powers not created by the Constitution.” US District Judge Anna Diggs Taylor

“A state of war is not a blank check for the President when it comes to the rights of the Nation’s citizens.” US Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor

The winters are pretty bad in Watertown, on the eastern end of Lake Ontario. Maybe he froze his brain by breathing through his mouth when outside?

Update: Mustang Bobby has a carefully reasoned response to More Holy Crap.

August 21, 2006   8 Comments

Moral Clarity

Far be it for me to judge others, but I think Pierre of Candide’s Notebooks is a little put out with Joseph Lieberman, or so it seems in Lieberman, L’Immoraliste:

The hypocrisy makes Günter Grass’ belated admission that he was drafted into the Waffen SS look saintly in comparison: Joe Lieberman is calling for Don Rumsfeld’s resignation. Joe Lieberman—best man at the Pentagon’s wedding with neo-cons, valet to the Iraq invasion, concierge to the Bush White House to this day and fuse-lighter to every missile with an Arab destination—now thinks, three years too late (six, by fairer measures), that gunning for a dead horse by means of reviving his own senatorial horse race can help him in November. Calling for Rumsfeld’s resignation now is like Robert McNamara apologizing in 1995 for his Rumsfeldian role in the Vietnam War. It’s not only too late. It’s an offense to those already ruined by the errors.

That’s just the opening. I think he might have been ready for all-caps and bold towards the end.

Nice rant.

August 21, 2006   Comments Off on Moral Clarity