Daily Archives: April 20, 2009

I know exactly how Obama feels …

President Mobotu Sese Seku, Kuku Kibombi, dictator of Zaire and arch typical fascist leader, once shoved a book in my hand, sort of like how Hugo Chavez shoved a book in Obama’s hand. Republicans did not mock me as they are now mocking Obama, mainly because I was not President of the United States of America at the time. It was a little embarrassing, but I kept the book. It’s called “Mobutu … something something something.” (I wonder if that is the same book Chavez gave to Obama? D’ya think?)

Anyway, the Yahoos are all over Obama because some drone paparazzi copped a photograph of Obama and The Enemy of The Free World shaking hands and looking happy. How dare he. End of the world, end of freedom, he’s ruining it for everyone. No Republican Leader would ever do anything like that.



Impeach Judge Jay Bybee

In one of the more nauseating passages, [of the recently released torture memos] Jay Bybee, then an assistant attorney general and now a federal judge, wrote admiringly about a contraption for waterboarding that would lurch a prisoner upright if he stopped breathing while water was poured over his face. He praised the Central Intelligence Agency for having doctors ready to perform an emergency tracheotomy if necessary.

These memos are not an honest attempt to set the legal limits on interrogations, which was the authors’ statutory obligation. They were written to provide legal immunity for acts that are clearly illegal, immoral and a violation of this country’s most basic values.

Jay Bybee is now a federal circuit court judge. This is as high as you get as a judge short of the supreme court or a fistful of ludes. The phrases above come from a recent piece in the New York Times.

White House Torture Architects’ Exemption is the Wrong Thing To Do

This is being reported:

President Barack Obama does not intend to prosecute Bush administration officials who devised the policies that led to the harsh interrogation of suspected terrorists, White House chief of staff Rahm Emanuel said Sunday.

[Earlier,] … he said “it is our intention to assure those who carried out their duties relying in good faith upon legal advice from the Department of Justice, that they will not be subject to prosecution.” He did not specifically address the policymakers.

Asked Sunday on ABC’s “This Week” about the fate of those officials, Emanuel said the president believes they “should not be prosecuted either and that’s not the place that we go.


More details are needed. Is there or is there not a presidential pardon for CIA (or equivilant) field operatives and is there or is there not a presidential pardon for Bush White House “policy makers.” Who are “policy makers” and more importantly, who are NOT “policy makers.” (I.e., is there anyone left out of this rubric?)

Hawking to Hospital

Physicist Stephen Hawking, the author of “A Brief History of Time” who is almost completely paralyzed by motor neurone disease, has been urgently admitted to hospital, Cambridge University said on Monday.

Hawking, 67, was taken by ambulance to a local hospital in Cambridge, where he teaches as a professor of applied mathematics and theoretical physics.

“Professor Hawking is very ill and has been taken by ambulance to Addenbrooke’s Hospital,” the university said.

h/t Ben

Did Salieri Kill Mozart?

…I sat in the bar with the old man from Italy and thought about how much of our common knowledge of historical events is based on the plots of movies. Talking to Vincenzo forced me to step back and question these assumptions that I myself make. If I learn something from a movie, before I convict someone in my own mind, fairness dictates that I research a bit more….

Salieri and Mozart in Vesuvio Saloon @ Quiche Moraine Dot Com

What would you pay to make Norm Coleman go away?

A joint project by Democrats has flipped traditional fund-raising on its head, by starting a campaign aimed at collecting $1 a day from supporters “to make Norm Coleman go away.”

The Progressive Change Campaign Committee, a new group working to get like-minded candidates elected, has teamed up with Howard Dean’s Democracy for America to tap the wallets of Democrats who are disgruntled by the five-month-old ballot contest in Minnesota between Mr. Coleman, the former Republican senator, and Al Franken, the Democrat.