Saturday, July 31, 2004

Ron Reagan's Cognitive Dissonance

Ronald Prescott Reagan has this to say in the current Esquire magazine about the sentiment within the crowds that honored former President Reagan during recent memorial events: "Misty-eyed with nostalgia, people set aside old political gripes for a few days and remembered what friend and foe always conceded to Ronald Reagan: He was damned impressive in the role of leader of the free world."

Oh yeah? "Friend and foe" always conceded that, did they?

I remember working very, very hard for years (Reagan '80 and the two presidential terms) to convince people that Ronald Reagan did not want to start World War III. Millions of grassroots conservatives like me were fighting to get the truth told against an onslaught of "Reagan will start a major war" misinformation relentlessly pounded into our ears and eyes by the then-all-but-monopolistic and smarmily self-important mainstream media.

Why does Little Ron think the line "there you go again" worked so well for Governor Reagan in the 1980 Reagan-Carter debates? It was so effective -- such a turning point -- precisely because, up to that very moment, many Americans genuinely were not sure if Ronald Wilson Reagan wanted to start a war. They'd been told that, you see, constantly. They didn't like Carter much, but they weren't going to vote for Reagan if it meant nuclear war.

Stagflation was pretty bad, but incineration didn't sound inviting, either.

Then, with one comment, one quip, four little "there you go again" words, Governor Reagan showed himself to be normal. That's it. Just normal. Why, said a few million swing voters, mostly talking to themselves until they checked to see if their loved ones were reaching the same conclusion (swing voters rarely like to go out on ideological limbs), Reagan's a perfectly sane person. He doesn't drool at the prospect of nuclear war, not at all. A vote for him isn't a vote for international suicide.

So, you see, if "friend and foe" alike "always conceded" that Ronald Reagan "was damned impressive in the role of leader of the free world," then "there you go again" wouldn't have resonated. Governor Reagan wouldn't even have said it, because Carter wouldn't have been trying to paint him as an irresponsible war-lover in the debate. And, had Reagan said it, we scarcely would have noticed it then, let alone remember it now.

Most likely, Little Ron simply wasn't paying attention during those years (the Cold War was a pretty brief episode, after all, and what with dance class and pet videos and whatever, Little Ron probably didn't have a chance to familiarize himself with the basics, such as which side the good guys were on). As a result, he now knows little about the issues. No wonder he failed to become a left-wing Rush Limbaugh (or, should I say, a left-wing Michael Reagan?) with his political talk show while his sister Patti was arranging a meeting for the uber-peacenik nuclear freeze-loving Helen Caldicott with Daddy at the White House.

(Gotta wonder this: Has a man ever loved his daughter more, than he would meet with Helen Caldicott because his little girl asked him to?)

Make no mistake: If Little Ron and Patti had had their way, the only reason we wouldn't be speaking Russian now is because our post-Soviet school system would be so bad we'd never have figured out how to learn it.

I think another factor besides the obvious culprit, ignorance, may also be at play. Little Ron loved his Dad, or so I assume. He loathes conservatives. Yet, Dad was a conservative. Cognitive dissonance. Little Ron resolves it by deciding that there are two kinds of conservatives: Good ones (Daddy) and bad ones (all the others). However, since even an ultra-liberal can have a hard time believing that nearly all conservatives are evil, Little Ron is probably a little insecure about his worldview. That's why he has to be so loud about proclaiming it.

(Come to think if it, he reminds me a little of Andrew Sullivan.)

Sorry, Little Ron. Your Dad was a mainstream conservative. Philosophically, he had more in common with Rush Limbaugh than he did with you. DNA isn't everything.

Make your peace with reality. Your Dad was a great guy AND a conservative.

It is possible for a person to be both.

Posted by Amy Ridenour at 1:54 AM


A note from Ed Haislmaier:
In his e-mail post "Fahrenheit 9/11 and Its Impact on Military Morale, by a Soldier," Joe Roche asks rhetorically:
I wonder how damaging and shocking a Moore project would have been in the 1940s making such a video of Franklin Roosevelt. All the corruption and decadence in that administration would have fed such a project well. Or how damaging and shocking would such a Moore project have been to Lincoln, who wavered and shifted often in finding the right mediums and balances in pursuing the great causes of the Civil War.
Evidently thinking along the same lines, Rod Thompson, writing in the Southwest Florida Herald Tribune, offers a column entitled, What if Michael Moore had made 'documentaries' during past wars? Thompson speculates on how 'Mooreumetaries' (a word I just coined) about the Revolutionary War, the Civil War and World War II might have been reported in the papers of those times.
I'll add this: The Thompson column is hilarious.



Posted by Amy Ridenour at 1:16 AM

Friday, July 30, 2004

Michael Moore and Military Morale: Soldier's Essay Strikes a Chord

The last few days I have been doing a lot more blog reading than blog writing, particularly those blogs (69 by informal count) who have reprinted or commented upon Joe Roche's e-mail blog post about the impact of Michael Moore's movie, Fahrenheit 9-11, on troop morale. As he often seems to do, Joe struck a chord.

Little Green Footballs' coverage alone received over 500 comments from readers.

Other blogs and websites covering this or linking to it included the Drudge Report, Blackfive, Kim du Toit, Sgt. Missick's A Line In the Sand, Everything I Know Is Wrong, Ben Shapiro's Blog, Betsy's Page, Citizen Smash - The Indepundit,, Enter Stage Right, eTalkinghead, Free Kentucky, JunkYardBlog,, and many others. (If I did not mention your site, it is due to time constraints, not because I do not heartily thank you. Please accept my thanks.)

Oh, and Daily Kos covered Joe, too. Called Joe a Freeper. I don't know why. Having spent the last 15 months in combat and combat-related duty in Iraq, Joe's barely had time and opportunity to send out individual e-mails, let alone spend time posting at Free Republic. Free Republic folks defend freedom with keyboards. Joe's been doing it with a rifle. Both are important, but there is a difference.

A Toronto Star columnist, Antonia Zerbbisias, also wrote about Joe in his July 27 column. By coincidence, I saw the author on Fox a few days before this piece. As I recall it, he opined that he'd rather see Al Jazeera on Canadian TV than Fox, because Al Jazeera provides more "diversity" (of opinion, presumably). I'm not sure that's true in Canada. The Al Jazeera point of view seems to get a lot of play there.

Andrew Sullivan also provided a link to Joe's writing as posted on the Perry on Politics blog.

Over the last four days, on this blog alone, Joe's individual post on Fahrenheit 9-11's impact on military morale has received 63,000 pageviews. I assume that's but a small fraction of the total who read Joe's remarks on Fahreheit 9-11 across the Internet, given the number of bloggers who quoted or reprinted his post. Thanks to you all. The Internet is an amazing resource.

Posted by Amy Ridenour at 3:34 AM

Monday, July 26, 2004

Fahrenheit 9/11 and Its Impact on Military Morale, by a Soldier

Army Spc. Joe Roche has perhaps the harshest words yet for Michael Moore's Fahrenheit 9/11, describing its impact on the morale of our troops deployed overseas as "devastating."

In typical Joe fashion, he did something about the matter. He made copies of this Independence Institute rebuttal of Moore's film (29 pages in small font, he says!) and distributed it widely among U.S. troops in Kuwait.

But I'll get out of the way and let Joe speak:
Michael Moore's film, Fahrenheit 9/11, is making the rounds here at U.S. bases in Kuwait. Some soldiers have received it already and are passing is around. The impact is devastating.

Here we are, soldiers of the 1st Armored Division, just days from finally returning home after over a year serving in Iraq, and Moore's film is shocking and crushing soldiers, making them feel ashamed. Moore has abused the First Amendment and is hurting us worse than the enemy has.

There are the young and impressionable soldiers, like those who joined the Army right out of high school. They aren't familiar w/ the college-type political debate environment, and they haven't been schooled in the full range of issues involved. They are vulnerable to being hurt by a vicious film like Moore's.

There are others who joined for reasons of money and other benefits, and never gave full thought to the issues. For them, seeing this film has jolted them grievously because they never even knew where some of these countries were that we have been serving in. Imagine the impact this film has on them.

And there are those who are hurting from being away from family and loved ones. They are burnt out, already hurting inside from 15 months of duty out here, and now to be hit w/ this film.. it is devastating.

Lastly, there are those like me, who want to explode in anger and rage at this abuse of the First Amendment and the way Moore has twisted reality so harshly.

Specialist Janecek, who is feeling depressed because a close family member is nearing the end of her life, just saw the film today. I saw him in the DFAC. He is devastated. "I feel shitty, ashamed, like this was all a lie." Not only is he looking at going straight to a funeral when he returns home, but now whatever pride he felt for serving here has been crushed by Moore's film. Specialist Everett earlier after seeing the film: "You'll be mad at shit for ever having come here."

And there are others. Mostly the comments are absolute shock at the close connections Moore makes between the Bush family and the Bin Laden family in Saudi Arabia. "Bush looks really really REALLY corrupt in this film. I just don't know what to think anymore," is a common comment to hear. Some of these soldiers are darn right ashamed tonight to be American soldiers, to have been apart of this whole mission in Iraq, and are angry over all that Moore has presented in his film.

We know this is all based on Moore's lies and deceptions. But we, I'm afraid, are a minority. Right now, just days away from what should be a proud and happy return from 15 months of duty in Operation Iraqi Freedom, your U.S. soldiers are coming back ashamed and hurt because of Moore's work.

What these good yet impressionable soldiers don't realize is that twisting reality and manipulating the truth is something lawyers do every day in court for their clients. OJ Simpson, so clearly guilty in the ghastly murders, was able to get off because his lawyer team completely confused the issue. Now today, in typical fashion, Moore is doing the very same thing in this film. This is, frankly, the nature of political debate in a democracy -- especially when extremism is allowed to go unchecked.

Lt. Bischoff is so angry he could explode. He knows Moore's work is based on lies and distortions, but as he says, "the damage is done." Clearly, this is the type of thing we expect from angry leftists like Moore. What we didn't expect was the full impact this film is now having and how it has been embraced and supported by so many Hollywood elites. Lt. Bischoff says Moore's film is a work of deception, lies and distortions that when seen by those unfamiliar w/ the issues involved, has the effect of attacking the American peoples' resolve and focus in this war.

From what I've heard from the soldiers, the things that have them most shocked and upset them are the connections Moore makes between the Bush family and the Bin Ladens. The impression is that Bush is part of a conspiracy that supported the September 11th terrorist attacks. They speak of how Moore makes a convincing case all the way from the 2000 election to now that Bush and Cheney are all about making money. That the September 11th attacks were merely calculated by them as to how they would earn them more money. They speak of the Saudi who was a fellow soldier w/ Bush in the National Guard, and how Moore makes it all look like Bush is more beholden to Saudi interests than US interests.

Moore's commentary and striking video stunts, such as confronting politicians w/ enlistment papers for their kids, of course hurts and affects these soldiers out here badly. These are the ones who have sacrificed much to serve. Moore's stunt is powerful.

I sometimes want to be mad at my fellow soldiers for being susceptible to Moore's distortions, but I can't really blame them. These are good Americans, who have volunteered to serve our country. Nothing says they all have to be experts in Middle Eastern issues and history and politics to serve. That would be silly. ...But this is, of course, the vulnerability that Moore has exploited.

I wonder how damaging and shocking a Moore project would have been in the 1940s making such a video of Franklin Roosevelt. All the corruption and decadence in that administration would have fed such a project well. Or how damaging and shocking would such a Moore project have been to Lincoln, who wavered and shifted often in finding the right mediums and balances in pursuing the great causes of the Civil War. ...Need I even suggest the impact such would have had on Kennedy or Johnson and all their hypocrisies?

Moore is hurting us, hurting America, and today I can tell you he is hurting your soldiers. I don't know what to ask, except that good people out there find ways to organize information so that we can better counter Moore's impact. Is there anyone in Hollywood who is willing to stand up and make a similar film to counter Moore's? I know good people w/ integrity in the film industry don't want to be seen as pushing a political agenda in movies. But this is EXACTLY what Moore and the radical leftists in Hollywood have done. Is there no way to put together a response to them?

I hope more people will arm themselves w/ the facts and the realities of the situation out here and in the world at large. Our political arena is taking a big hit from this film by Moore, and it should tell us all something when terrorist groups like Hezbollah are distributing it around to their own people.

I think it is sad and unfortunate that at this last hour of a long and difficult deployment, so many soldiers are being made to feel ashamed and "shitty" for having ever served in this whole mission. Moore has abused the First Amendment. This is his right, and we soldiers have defended that right, but we who know better should NOT just sit back and let such enemies w/in our own country get by w/ such assaults unanswered.


Posted by Amy Ridenour at 1:30 AM

Sunday, July 25, 2004

Markets Protecting the Environment

The Commons Blog (Markets Protecting the Environment) has a beautiful new design (if you think I am exaggerating, check it out).

I admit to a little bias, because I post there, but The Commons is the brainchild of blogger Iain Murray, not me, so it is fair for me to praise it. You can visit Iain's other blog, Edge of England's Sword, here.

Posted by Amy Ridenour at 1:41 AM

Favorite Blogs... How About Favorite Posts?

Some bloggers like to list their favorite blogs. That can be interesting, certainly, but the list I'd like to see is a list of all-time favorite posts (written by others).

It would be quite enjoyable to read the posts on these lists. I've never kept a formal list of favorite posts I've seen on other blogs, but I know that sometimes I read a post on a blog I am visiting and am just blown away by the quality of the writing.

Maybe I'll start compiling a list of my own favorites, anyway.

Posted by Amy Ridenour at 12:43 AM

Friday, July 23, 2004

USS Ronald Reagan - Welcome Home

Ed Haislmaier has information to share with fans of Ronald Reagan and the U.S. Navy:
In case you weren't aware of it (as I wasn't until I came across the stories below), the USS Ronald Reagan arrives at it's new home port of San Diego today, and Nancy Reagan and Michael Reagan are participating in the welcoming ceremony. Indeed, Michael Reagan flew out to the ship yesterday to join the crew for the last leg of their journey.

It is inspiring to read about the pride the crew has in carrying on President Reagan's legacy. Here's one quote from today's San Diego Tribune story "Ronald Reagan Would be Proud of Namesake."

"It's all about Ronald Reagan," said Command Master Chief Petty Officer Kathleen Hansen, the aircraft carrier's top enlisted sailor. "It's hard to explain the pride in the ship these sailors have. It's not the fact it's a new ship; it's because it's the Ronald Reagan."

The story also notes:

"One Reagan sailor has a more personal connection to the carrier's namesake. Petty Officer 2nd Class Timothy Reagan, 28, is a distant relative.

New crew members stop him in the passageways when they see his name embroidered on his blue coveralls.

"'Reagan on the Reagan' is what they say," he said. "A lot of people don't believe when you say you're family."

There is also an AP story with similar comments.

In addition, I would encourage everyone to check out the ship's web site. Among other things, I think those of us who worked during the 1980s to support President Reagan's foreign and defense policies should be very gratified to know that the U.S. Navy's newest aircraft carrier not only bears his name but has "Peace Through Strength" as its official motto.

While at the site, make sure to read the moving story of the ship's Captain flying back to present the flag to Mrs. Reagan at the conclusion of the grave side ceremony for the President -- but only if you have a box of tissues at the ready.

Posted by Amy Ridenour at 5:03 PM

N-Word a "Time Honored Tool"; White People: Stop Breathing ASAP

Mike King has some interesting posts on his blog.

The first is a followup on Project 21's call for a single standard on the matter of what language is OK and what is not.

Universal Press Syndicate, which distributed Ted Rall's cartoon calling Condoleeza Rice the "n-word," responded to Project 21's protest of the matter. Basically, Universal Press Syndicate says, it considers use of the "n-word" a "time-honored tool."

Hmmm. Wonder how many of their editors are prone to using this "time-honored tool."

Michael reprints the syndicate's response to Project 21 in full and has some thoughts on it, as well as his own experiences discussing the issue on live radio call-in shows this week.

The second item is a little lighter. As in skin tone. Apparently, the Congressional Black Caucus has now formally charged that we whities are responsible for global warming. Specifically:
African-American households emit 20 percent less carbon dioxide than white households. Historically, this difference was even higher.
What? Do white people breathe more than black people? Note to self: Stop breathing. Pause. Oh, I think I see what the CBC is up to here...

Posted by Amy Ridenour at 4:13 AM

911 Commission Report

Sean at Everything I Know Is Wrong has 911 Commission report links up. I've only read Chapter One so far, but I intend to read the entire thing.

I wonder how many of our elected officials will.

Posted by Amy Ridenour at 3:51 AM

Carbon Dioxide Nonsense

The silly lawsuit by eight state attorneys general to force plants in other states to limit carbon dioxide emissions brings to mind this paper by physicist Gerald Marsh:
"Nonsense By Any Other Name: Calling Carbon Dioxide A Pollutant Doesn't Make It A Pollutant."

Posted by Amy Ridenour at 3:42 AM

"The Best Data Show No Recent Rise at All in Global Temperature"

Read about this lack of global warming here.

Posted by Amy Ridenour at 3:37 AM

Thursday, July 22, 2004

Timing of the Berger Scandal

Husband David is adding to his prior observations regarding the Sandy Berger case:
Let's put the controversy to rest regarding the timing of the Sandy Berger scandal: One person had control over the timing of this story -- and that was Sandy Berger. Sandy Berger decided when to examine the classified documents at the Archives. Sandy Berger decided when to depart the Archives with notes unlawfully.

And Sandy Berger decided when to comment publicly about the FBI investigation of him. He decided to wait nine months -- after the matter was already public.

Berger is no political neophyte.

In Washington, nothing stays secret for long and Berger knows that. There had to be dozens -- if not hundreds of people -- who knew about the criminal investigation. It was only a matter of time before it went public.

National Archives employees knew, law enforcement officials knew, Berger's attorneys knew and, presumably, Berger's family and close friends knew.

And since FBI searches are seldom subtle, Berger's neighbors no doubt knew something was afoot too.

Bruce Lindsey, President Bill Clinton's legal counsel, knew too. One has to assume that Bill Clinton knew as Lindsey was Clinton's, not Berger's legal counsel.

Berger had a choice: Tell this story at a time of his choosing or all someone else to determine the timing. By appearances, he chose the later.

Posted by Amy Ridenour at 8:00 AM


Check out this Full Screen Apollo 17 Mission - "Last man on the Moon" panorama you can control with your keyboard and mouse.

Looks like our Apollo Astronauts were trusting their lives to a module made of foil.

Check out the 360 degree view from the top of Mount Everest, too. Sure glad I got to see that this way -- 'cuz it is the only way I ever will!

Link courtesy James Lileks.

Posted by Amy Ridenour at 3:19 AM

Slippery Sandy

A New York Daily News report says Sandy Berger may have had plenty of opportunities to remove documents:
Former national security adviser Sandy Berger repeatedly persuaded monitors assigned to watch him review top-secret documents to break the rules and leave him alone, sources said Wednesday.

Berger, accused of smuggling some of the secret files out of the National Archives, got the monitors out of the high-security room by telling them he had to make sensitive phone calls.

Guards were convinced to violate their own rules by stepping out of the secure room as he looked over documents and allegedly stashed some in his clothing, sources said.

"He was supposed to be monitored at all times but kept asking the monitor to leave so he could make private calls," a senior law enforcement source told the Daily News.

Berger also took "lots of bathroom breaks" that aroused some suspicion, the source added. It is standard procedure to constantly monitor anyone with a security clearance who examines the type of code-word classified files stored in the underground archives vault.

The same archives monitors told the FBI Berger was observed stuffing his socks with handwritten notes about files he reviewed that were going to the Sept. 11 panel. It is prohibited to make notes about the secret files and leave with them without special approval.

Berger's attorney, Lanny Breuer, has denied the allegation that Berger hid papers in his socks.

Posted by Amy Ridenour at 2:49 AM

Berger Observation

Husband David has some new thoughts to add to his observations yesterday about the whirlwind surrounding Sandy Berger.
The Berger scandal reminds me once again of the Rumsfeld resignation campaign.

Rumsfeld was supposed to resign because a handful of soldiers (among several million in the U.S. Armed Forces) serving thousands of miles away violated the law by abusing Iraqi prisoners.

And yet, when one of Kerry's foreign policy advisors and surrogates violates the law, no one blames Kerry and calls for him to step down.

I know that technically, Berger was working for Clinton when he was looking over (and pilfering) the documents. But if anything ended up being used by the Kerry campaign -- as some allege -- then the comparison is a lot closer.

Just an observation.

Another observation: If they ever catch the person who stole classified materials from Los Alamos, do you think they'll claim they inadvertently took the materials as a result of sloppiness? And if they do, how do you suppose the media will greet such a defense?

Posted by Amy Ridenour at 12:35 AM

Black Authors to Recommend

A few days ago I posted a letter from a correspondent who wanted recommendations of great books by black authors. I promised to post any responses sent to me in a few days.

Several folks responded in their own blogs. Particularly noteworthy is Cobb's response, posted in "Books for the College Bound Black Man."

Gerry at the Daly Thoughts blog also "blogged' a reply, which can be read here.

Ally at the Who Moved My Truth? blog recommends:
Anything by Walter E. Williams of George Mason University ( or Thomas Sowell, I believe of the same university. Both are black, brilliant economists, and conservative."
Ambra at the blog posted posted a thoughtful essay, not precisely a response, but close. Worth a look in any case.

We also received other recommendations by e-mail, which I am providing in list form in no particular order. Thomas Sowell pops up a lot, but there are plenty of other recommendations, a few of which are classics.
Losing the Race: Self-Sabotage in Black America by John McWhorter
Up from Slavery by Booker T. Washington
The Content of Our Character : A New Vision of Race In America by Shelby Steele
Uncle Sam's Plantation: How Big Government Enslaves America's Poor and What We Can Do About It by Star Parker
Authentically Black: Essays for the Black Silent Majority by John H. McWhorter
Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, An American Slave: Written by Himself by Frederick Douglass
A Conflict of Visions: Ideological Origins of Political Struggles by Thomas Sowell
Scam: How the Black Leadership Exploits Black America by Jesse Lee Peterson
Civil Rights by Thomas Sowell
The Ten Things You Can't Say in America by Larry Elder
Creating Equal: My Fight Against Race Preferences by Ward Connerly
The Narrative of Sojourner Truth by Olive Gilbert and Sojourner Truth
Barbarians Inside the Gates: And Other Controversial Essays by Thomas Sowell
Basic Economics: A Citizens Guide to the Economy, Revised and Expanded by Thomas Sowell
In Contempt by Christopher A. Darden
The Affirmative Action Debate by George E. Curry and Cornel West
Any other recommendations or comments?

Posted by Amy Ridenour at 12:03 AM

"A Collective Demand to Hold Our Breath"

The Christian Science Monitor has a balanced followup to the press conference by eight states attorneys general who apparently believe they deserve more power than Congress assembled.

After my publication (mildly crtitical of the attorneys general) "Now They Want to Be Caesar: Eight State Attorneys General Decide to End-Run Legislatures, Set National Global Warming Policies Themselves" was published Wednesday morning I received an e-mail from Scott Segal, who is director of the Electric Reliability Coordinating Council, containing their statement about the lawsuit. As it raises good points, I am reprinting it here:
Scott Segal, director of the Electric Reliability Coordinating Council (ERCC), made the following statement regarding tomorrow's nuisance litigation announcement by a group of state attorneys general led by New York's Eliot Spitzer. ERCC is a group of power-generating companies working on reasonable clean-air policy:

"It appears that New York Attorney General Spitzer and his followers intend to file a public nuisance lawsuit regarding carbon dioxide emissions.

This action brings new meaning to the term 'nuisance lawsuit.' Given that every human emits carbon dioxide every day, the next thing we anticipate from these attorney generals is a collective demand to hold our breath.

Simply put, a public nuisance lawsuit based upon carbon emission is frivolous. As attorney general Spitzer well knows, some of the key factual issues in this suit are already before the federal Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia in a case against the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. The nuisance case is just an exercise in election-year forum shopping.

Ironically, the attorneys general cite potential efficiency improvements at coal-fired power plants as approved methods to reduce carbon emissions. However, many of these same attorneys general have sought to delay clarification of new source review, a regulatory development critical to maintenance projects needed to improve efficiency. Once again, these attorneys general appear more concerned with regional economic competition than real environmental improvement.

The nuisance case is not a proper forum to address climate issues. The action attempts to transform a serious court into a debating society for political bluster. It is hard to believe that a court (a) would find this matter justiciable; (b) would grant the parties standing; or (c) would find that the petition actually states a claim upon which relief can be granted. In short, we do not believe the carbon nuisance case meets the minimum threshold for serious litigation."


Posted by Amy Ridenour at 12:00 AM

Wednesday, July 21, 2004

Operation Thrill Linda

Captain Ed at Captain's Quarters has posted a copy of Linda Ronstadt's touring schedule as part of his "Operation Thrill Linda," an effort to encourage Republicans and fundamentalist Christians to ask for refunds if they have Ronstadt concert tickets.

Ronstadt now has said: "It's a real conflict for me when I go to a concert and find out somebody in the audience is a Republican or fundamental Christian. It can cloud my enjoyment. I'd rather not know."

UPDATE: Michael King at Ramblings' Journal notes that we may soon be thrilling Bonnie Raitt as well.

Posted by Amy Ridenour at 9:59 PM

Who Leaked the Berger Story? An Alternative Theory

Husband David has some thoughts to share on the Sandy Berger story:
Liberals would have us believe that the criminal investigation of Sandy Berger was leaked to the press for political purposes.

They could be right about that much. But the list of suspects isn't limited to President Bush.

Who had both the motive and opportunity to leak to the press?

President Bush may have had the motive -- a nice distraction in advance of the 9/11 Commission report and Democrat National Convention -- but there is no evidence thus far that anyone in the White House or the President's re-election campaign knew anything about the investigation until it went public on Monday.

If we're looking for someone who had both the motive and opportunity for such a leak, I nominate Bill Clinton. He had both the motive and the opportunity.

Bruce Lindsey, President Clinton's legal counsel, was among the first to be informed that sensitive documents had vanished following Sandy Berger's visit to the National archives. There's your opportunity.

And as for motive, let's call this a two-fer.

First, the leak -- if there was one -- comes just days before the 9/11 Commission is expected to issue its report. Lest we forget, intelligence failures during Bill Clinton's tenure will be included with those occurring during the Bush Administration.

Second, let's face it, what's bad for John Kerry is good for the Clintons. If John Kerry is elected President, Hillary Clinton's next chance to run for President will be 2012.

Sure, Sandy Berger considers Bill Clinton a friend, but his freedom is a small price to pay for the ultimate good. It wouldn't be the first time a Friend of Bill's did time for the cause.

A message to all you "journalists" out there: If you're going to continue reporting the liberals' leak theory without supporting evidence, I want my theory reported, too.

Posted by Amy Ridenour at 4:58 PM

Attorneys General or Global Warming Scientists?

Eight state attorneys general and the city of New York will have a press conference at noon Eastern Wednesday to announce that, despite not being scientists, they are wise enough to set a good portion of our national global warming policy.

Attorneys general are elected to enforce laws, not to create them.

The Separation of Powers concept was enshrined in our governmental bodies by our Founding Fathers for a reason: When too much power is congregated in one source, dictatorship is inevitable. If these state politicians wish to set national environmental policies they should lobby Congress or run for Congress themselves.

In this case, the politicians are expected to announce they will file a lawsuit to change policies regulating power plants in states other than their own, and supervise the federal Tennesse Valley Authority as well.

It must be quite something to believe oneself smarter than entire legislatures -- from long distance, no less.

I write more about all this in "Now They Want to Be Caesar: Eight State Attorneys General Decide to End-Run Legislatures, Set National Global Warming Policies Themselves."

Posted by Amy Ridenour at 3:27 AM

Tuesday, July 20, 2004

Girlie Men II

Regarding my post here, Gerry at Daly Thoughts asks:
Amy, are you suggesting that to compare a woman to a man would be insulting to her? Hmmmmmmmmmm?
Gerry, I bet you would be a formidable debate partner, but I don't surrender easily.

To compare one highly excellent group of people to another highly excellent group of people is to insult neither, and compliment both.

Posted by Amy Ridenour at 11:34 PM

Suing/Censoring Fox News, Part II

I was right about, one of the web's top "must visit" weblogs.

Posted by Amy Ridenour at 4:22 AM

Give Ted Rall the Rush Limbaugh Treatment

Project 21 is asking the civil rights establishment to hold cartoonist Ted Rall to the same standard to which it held Rush Limbaugh.

Project 21 notes that during last year's Limbaugh/ESPN controversy, NAACP President Kweisi Mfume called Limbaugh's remark about Donovan McNabb (Limbaugh opined that the news media wishes black quarterback Donovan McNabb well and said this is reflected in their reporting) "bigoted and arrogant." Mfume called for Limbaugh's removal. The National Association of Black Journalists demanded ESPN "separate itself" from Limbaugh. Rainbow/PUSH Coalition president Jesse Jackson, not previously known to be an expert on quarterbacks, called Limbaugh's remarks "not accurate and... insulting."

Ted Rall, through the vehicle of one of his cartoons, called White House National Security Advisor Condoleezza Rice a "house nigga."

Imagine for a moment what might have happened, had Rush Limbaugh called a prominent black a "house nigga."

Ted Rall, by the way, is a white guy, so he doesn't get to take advantage of that unofficial-but-nonetheless-enforced PC statute that says blacks can use the "n-word" while white people cannot. (Except Senator Byrd, that is, so maybe there is an n-word white guy exemption for former Klansmen. But a KKK exception wouldn't give Ted Rall a pass.)

Project 21's Michael King discusses the issue here in his blog while providing a copy of the comic strip for those who which to make their own judgement.

Last October I got quite steamed about the entire Limbaugh/ESPN matter, putting out two press releases (here and here) quoting an NFL team owner, sporterswriters and others making comments that, ten months later, still strike me a breathtakingly stupid. In this blog post from back then, I noted that no one from the NFL had refuted a team owner's implication that conservatives aren't wanted as NFL fans (have they yet?) and also noted that the NFL can't -- apparently literally -- count to ten.

Posted by Amy Ridenour at 3:13 AM

Global Cooling?

Read about the possibility here at FuturePundit.

Thanks to Instapundit for the pointer.

Posted by Amy Ridenour at 12:41 AM

Girlie Men

I believe the Arnold Schwarzenegger "girlie men" controversy is silly.

It is no insult to men to compare them to women. It is a compliment.

Posted by Amy Ridenour at 12:03 AM

Saturday, July 17, 2004

Good Reporting Versus Being First With the Story

From the New York Times' "9/11 Panel's Report to Offer New Evidence of Iran-Qaeda Ties":
The officials, speaking on condition of anonymity because of the embargo placed by the commission on discussing the report until its release, said...
No, they were not speaking anonymously because of the embargo, they were speaking anonymously because they did not want anyone to know it was they who had spoken. Had they been motivated by the embargo itself, they would not have broken it.

The public would be better served if the news media did not run so many stories with anonymous sources. Ask yourself: Would we be better off seeing these facts (assuming they are true) slightly later (five days from now) in the context of the full report or immediately, out of context and delivered to us by people with a secret agenda whose names we are not permitted to know?

You can bet the New York Times didn't ask itself this.

Posted by Amy Ridenour at 10:40 PM

Shoes for Iraqi Kids

The Keystone Military News is collecting new or good used children's shoes for Iraqi children.

A Pennsylvania National Guard member, 1st Lt. Eric Sloan, is handling the show distribution on the Iraqi end.

I know three little Ridenours who could help with this one...

Posted by Amy Ridenour at 3:01 AM

Book Recommendations Requested

Anyone want to e-mail suggestions in response to this letter we received today?

I mentor a young black man who is going to go to college next year. I was wondering if you had a list of literature or suggestions for some reading material. He is interested in economics and business. I was hoping for some ethics, philosophy, and history titles as well. I would prefer if the authors were black. He attends a majority white private Catholic school where he is one of the brightest students; I want him to have some black intellectual experience too.

Thank you for your time.

[Name Deleted]

P.S. I heard about your site from Trueblackman, (I don't know his real name) on Free Republic
Addendum: Check out the recommendations we receive here.

Posted by Amy Ridenour at 12:18 AM

Friday, July 16, 2004

Suing/Censoring Fox News

Michael King at Ramblings' Journal has a post that could be a parody, but isn't: A group of left-wing groups, apparently including Common Cause, and, are planning to sue Fox News for using the slogan "fair and Balanced."

Lefties often flasely accuse the right of censorship (many erroneously thought the voluntary grassroots conservative boycott of the ridiculous and defamatory CBS/HBO "Reagans" movie constituted censorship), but when you go to a government court to tell a TV broadcast network how to cover the news, it is the real thing. Or it would be if they aren't laughed out of court. Which is likely.

One more case for the frivolous lawsuit files. If doesn't have this covered already, it will soon.

Posted by Amy Ridenour at 10:57 PM

"Gesture Politics Can Be Environmentally Unfriendly"

Dr. Madsen Pirie has a nicely to-the-point post about recycling on the Adam Smith Institute blog. An excerpt:
Some people seem to suppose that by recycling paper they are saving trees, but the opposite is often true. Paper is mostly made from trees planted for the purpose, and it is young trees that soak up most of the carbon dioxide. If those trees are not planted, that carbon is not soaked up. Nor is it if they are not harvested and replaced. Recycling paper may make people feel good, but gesture politics can be environmentally unfriendly...

Posted by Amy Ridenour at 10:34 PM

Mundane Tasks

A blog new to me,, reprinted on July 15 "The L.A. Times Defends Bush," an excellent article by John McWhorter about today's NAACP.

Lifting blacks up is no longer a matter of getting whites off our necks. We are faced, rather, with the mundane tasks of teaching those "left behind" after the civil rights victory how to succeed in a complex society - one in which there will never be a second civil rights revolution.
Thanks to Broken Masterpieces for the pointer.

Posted by Amy Ridenour at 9:36 PM

Thanks, Rush!

Rush Limbaugh was kind enough to defend Project 21 and other black conservatives on his show Thursday, and has had the transcript of his comments posted on his website.

Rush is a great friend to Project 21. A bit over ten years ago, when Project 21 was new, Rush ran footage of a Project 21 press conference on his TV show two nights running, and played excerpts from the press conference on his radio show. (Shortly thereafter he also featured Project 21 member Star Parker in an issue of The Limbaugh Letter.) Our phones rang off the hook. We literally could not make an outgoing call because of so many people trying to call in, because if we hung up from one call, even if we did it as fast as we possibly could, another person already was on the line. This amazing telephone state of siege lasted, if I recall correctly, for several days.

It was no way to get work done, but it was great.

Project 21 also received a lot of donations at the time because of Rush, even though Rush never once asked people to send Project 21 money. He just talked about Project 21, and that was enough. Project 21 received tens of thousands of dollars from bighearted people all across the United States, nearly all in small gifts accompanied by a note of support. It was spontaneous and wonderful, and a great help to Project 21.

Thanks, Rush.

Posted by Amy Ridenour at 1:47 AM


David Brock's organization seems to be peeved that Project 21 members appear on Fox's Hannity and Colmes so often.

They also don't like member Kevin Martin's comment on the show Tuesday that asking President Bush to speak to the NAACP "would be like asking a Jewish rabbi to go down to a Ku Klux Klan skinhead convention." They call this analogy "comparing" the NAACP to the KKK... a little misleading. Kevin isn't comparing the NAACP to the KKK, he's comparing the relative welcome Bush would get at an NAACP convention to the welcome a Rabbi would get at a skinhead convention. Which is to say, not a very friendly one.

A great line, Kevin. Some folks on Free Republic thought so, too.

Posted by Amy Ridenour at 1:27 AM

R.I.P., Dr. Constantine C. Menges

I just learned of the passing Sunday of Dr. Constantine C. Menges, one of the (largely) unsung heroes of our victory in the Cold War.

It has been perhaps a decade since I last spoke with him, but he was an uncommonly nice man and a great American. We all should be grateful for what he accomplished in this life.

Posted by Amy Ridenour at 1:04 AM

I May Be "Super-Ultra White," But...

The following are excerpts from an article by C. Stone Brown on DiversityInc. (Diversity magazine's website) on July 14 (subscription required -- free trial available):
Although some have criticized Bill Cosby for highly publicized comments he's made about poor African Americans in recent weeks, [NAACP President] Kweisi Mfume drew the line between Cosby's remarks and to those made by white conservatives who have voiced similar remarks critical of African Americans.

'Bill Cosby has legitimacy, that's the one difference... He has legitimacy in the larger black community. In other words [Cosby's] 'been, there, done that,'' said Mfume. 'He has legitimacy that the super-ultra white conservative doesn't. So when he says something, you listen differently. That's opposed to Rush Limbaugh, who has no legitimacy whatsoever in the black community - none, although he thinks he does.'"
Mfume said the NAACP has been working overtime on its voter registration drives.

"Our whole purpose this year has been to go to every nook and cranny of this country and to find people to register them to vote and to teach them how to vote, particularly in states that are going to make a difference. I've just looked at all the other organizations that have come on the scene," he said.

But that is just the first phase of the NAACP voter-registration drive, said Mfume.

"Phase two is for us to go after 'unlikely' voters for the rest of the year because pollsters never count them. It's the 'unlikely' voter that is going to make a real difference in this year's election because it is the 'unlikely' voter that is going to be more motivated to come out to vote than those who think they won something four-years ago."
Since I am "super-ultra white," I probably lack the "legitimacy" (whatever that is) to ask, but isn't the NAACP's President saying in the second excerpt that the NAACP is an openly-political organization trying to "make a difference" in a federal election?

Posted by Amy Ridenour at 12:32 AM

Thursday, July 15, 2004

And at 7:32 AM He Slowed, But Did Not Stop, at a Stop Sign...

I think someone should follow Mike Rogers around, write down absolutely everything he does, and put the information on the Internet.

Then we'll see if he still has no respect whsoever for privacy.

Posted by Amy Ridenour at 11:21 PM

Nader Deserves Apology

A Project 21 member is asking Congressman Mevin L. Watt (D-NC) to apologize to Ralph Nader, and is calling upon the Congressional Black Caucus to be a little more tolerant and respectful of others.

Read about it here.

Posted by Amy Ridenour at 4:00 AM

Just That Ole Plantation Thinking

Kweisi Mfume and his allies just can't stand diversity. They believe blacks are allowed to have one point of view -- theirs -- and that any black who deviates must be under the control of white people.

Don't take my word for it. Here's what Mfume said in his opening speech at the ongoing NAACP convention: "When the ultraconservative right-wing attacker has run out of attack strategy, he goes and gets someone that looks like you and me to continue the attacks... They can't deal with the leaders we choose for ourselves, so they manufacture, promote and hire new ones."

It is difficult to imagine a greater insult to black people than to assert -- while claiming to be among black America's chosen leaders, no less (when was that vote?) -- that if conservative blacks even get near white people they lose their ability to think independently.

Some white people are liberal. Some white people are conservative. Some black people are liberal. Some black people are conservative. I suggest that Mr. Mfume should get used to this, because it will never change.

Thursday on C-Span's Washington Journal Project 21's Mychal Massie will rebut Mfume (9:30 AM Eastern) . Other Project 21 members have been addressing these and other insulting remarks from the NAACP leadership as well this week on Fox's Hannity and Colmes, on the Michael Reagan Show, in the Washington Times and elsewhere, including on numerous blogs.

I hope to get a chance later to link to some of these blog discussions and news articles, and also to describe Project 21 (its history, how it works and where it gets its money) in a little more detail. The slanders being thrown by left-wing blacks against Project 21 are a compliment, in a way (Mfume & Co would not bother if they did not feel threatened), but a defense is warranted nonetheless. There are some great folks in Project 21.

Stay tuned.

Posted by Amy Ridenour at 3:14 AM

Tuesday, July 13, 2004

NAACP Poll Not Anti-Bush -- Group's Leaders Still Are

The NAACP has a poll linked to its main page asking the question: "Is Bush disrespecting the black community by continually refusing to speak at the NAACP convention?"

As of 10:30 PM Eastern, 4,195 votes have been cast. Results: 50.7 percent yes, 47.7 percent no, and 1.6 percent not sure.

Somehow, I doubt the NAACP expected the poll results to be that close.

Posted by Amy Ridenour at 10:35 PM

Monday, July 12, 2004

Mark V. Shaney - Our Imaginary Employee

There's an imaginary guy pixeling about, pretending he's from The National Center.

According to Wikipedia, twenty years ago, some men at the Bell Labs created a program to write and send fake electronic messages. The fake messages their program generated were signed as "Mark V. Shaney."

Lately, either someone using this name, or using the program itself or a similar program, has been generating comments on blogs under the name 1st Lt. Mark V. Shaney USMC. It is a busy little operation. Google shows 2,210 references for "1st Lt. Mark V. Shaney USMC" right now.

If you click on his name on many/most of these comments, you are directed to this website.

Mostly, "Lt. Shaney" just pixels onto someone's blog and posts a comment, mostly without attracting notice. Lt. Shaney, it seems, can't write very well. But in a few cases blog owners have wondered about "him," as they do here, here and here.

So, for the benefit of anyone who wonders: Mark V. Shaney is not an employee of The National Center. We never heard of him or this little computer program before today, and we can't vouch for the accuracy of any of "his" postings. (Please don't cite him as a legitimate source!) Indeed, if his posts are written by a computer program and not by an individual playing a joke, any accuracies in his posts would be accidental at best.

In the meantime, despite Mark V. Shaney's shoddy writing and research, you gotta love an employee who works for no salary and no withholding taxes, and who doesn't even need a desk. Probably means he'll be posting for someone else by next week.

Posted by Amy Ridenour at 1:15 AM

Sunday, July 11, 2004

1st Armored Division Heading Home!

Good news for family, friends and fans of Joe Roche and all his fellow soldiers of the 1st Armored Division: They are headed home!

In fact, we've received an e-mail from Joe Roche saying he has made it safely out of Iraq and is now in Kuwait.

Moving a functional military division is no easy process. This article in Stars and Stripes gives some idea of the details involved.

Joe expects to be in Kuwait for a while yet, as he has various duties there. One of the things the soldiers will be doing is washing everything. (Joe says the water pressure on the hoses that are used to wash the vehicles is strong enough to take a person's hand off.) Then everything -- and that means a lot of equipment -- has to be packed to be shipped to the division's home base in Germany.

There are a number of camps for coalition soldiers in Kuwait. One can get an idea of what they look like from these Washington Post "surround" photos (click on the links under the first photo to see others).

During the 1st AD's stay in Iraq its press office sent out a daily newsletter, The Old Ironsides Report. Their final issue (pdf file) from Iraq provides a recap of the Division's accomplishments during its 15 month deployment in Iraq during Operation Iraqi Freedom. It is too brief, and too modest, but worth a read nonetheless.



Posted by Amy Ridenour at 12:24 AM

Friday, July 09, 2004

Others Call It Socialism

The Washington Post calls this "state capitalism."

Posted by Amy Ridenour at 1:30 AM

Periodic Table

I have no idea what this is, but it is neat to be on it.

Addendum, posted July 10: I received an amusing letter on the above post:
Amy Ridenour:

Cute idea. What won't the geek folks get up to next? But I think the table's constructor missed a bet with you. You ought to be Ar, for argon. Argon, incidentally, belongs to the family of noble gases. Make of that what you will.

Best regards,

John Van Laer
Scranton, PA

Posted by Amy Ridenour at 12:17 AM

Thursday, July 08, 2004

Only Third-Rate Speakers Should Apply

I'm watching Project 21 member Deroy Murdock do a tremendous job as a guest on Fox's O'Reilly Factor tonight.

Topic: Was President Bush right to tell the Bush-hating leadership of the NAACP that he wouldn't speak to their convention?

Deroy says the President is right, noting that the NAACP leadership has gone far beyond civil discourse in comments -- including some last week -- about Bush and his record. Disagreeing about issues is fine, says Deroy, but the leadership has been claiming (among other things) that Bush wants to bring back legal segregation. That's just not true. But the leadership doesn't seem to care if it is true.

Deroy's debate opponent on the show, Earl Ofari Hutchinson, was ardent in pressing his view, which seems to come down to a belief that if the President isn't talking to the NAACP, he isn't talking to black America. Balderdash. First of all, everytime Bush talks to all Americans, he's talking to black Americans. (We're against segretation, right?) Second, there are many groups other than the NAACP addressing civil rights/racial/urban issues, and Bush speaks to many of them. Third, civil rights/racial/urban issues are addressed in many ways and forums, which the NAACP (if it cares about issues more than itself) should be pleased about.

In my opinion, the NAACP needs to upgrade the quality of its work and the honesty of its discourse. Until then, only third-rate speakers should apply.

Posted by Amy Ridenour at 11:32 PM

Banning Generic Drugs?

David Almasi has a new paper published on the website, "Spurring Lower Prices: FDA Aided America's Rx Drug Companies By Not Banning Authorized Generics."

In it, he argues that the FDA was right to reject a request from generic drug manufacturers that research drug companies should not be permitted to market generic versions of their own drugs.

Concludes David:
Competitive forces have driven growth in the pharmaceutical industry by providing incentives for research-based pharmaceuticals to develop new and better drugs for the patients who need them and enabling generic drug makers to make more copies of those drugs available - sooner.

Just as the rise of generic drugs increased competition in the past, the emergence of "authorized generics" today is a way to deliver access to medicines more cost effectively.

Restricting authorized generics will only benefit generic drug makers intent on producing a copy they want to protect from competition. We should not allow generic companies to pick and choose what kind of competition in the marketplace is available to consumers. The market - not special interests - should be allowed to determine how much competition is "just right."

Posted by Amy Ridenour at 11:01 PM

Tuesday, July 06, 2004

Post Editor Reveals Bias

Washington Post Associate Editor Robert Kaiser (a powerful guy at the Post), had a rather blunt slam against the Bush family in an online public forum noted by the Patterico's Pontifications blog.

I guess Kaiser doesn't care who knows he doesn't think much of the Bush brothers.

I had a hard time believing the quote was real so I checked the Washington Post's published transcript -- it is not only real, it is in context.

Thanks to the Oh, That Liberal Media blog for the pointer.

Posted by Amy Ridenour at 9:48 PM

Sunday, July 04, 2004

Inalienable Versus Unalienable and More About the Declaration

Although we have the Declaration of Independence on this website for those seeking a copy of its text or that of other historical documents, I am still going to recommend this page from another website, In addition to providing the text of the Declaration itself, it contains numerous links for background information on key points, not-so-key points (inalienable versus unalienable) and the name of every signer has a hyperlink to his biography.

As there are several signers about whom I knew little, I clicked their names. Some interesting stories. For example, signer George Wythe of Virginia was murdered after converting from a slaveowner to an abolitionist. When Wythe not only freed his slaves, but provided for them in his will, his other heir, his great-nephew, decided to poison the ex-slaves with arsenic so he could inherit the entire estate himself. Doing so, he also accidentally murdered Wythe, who lasted long enough to take his great-nephew out of his will.

Signer Francis Hopkinson of Pennsylvania was a songwriter. It only seems slightly less interesting when we learn he was a lawyer as well.

There was a signer from Massachusetts with the unlikely name of Robert Treat Paine, who (perhaps considering the state of medical knowledge of the time?) nonetheless chose to be a lawyer, not a doctor. Why he used his middle name in a document destined for posterity is unknown.

Then there is the signer from Georgia with the most imaginative name of all, Button Gwinnett (what do you suppose his parents were thinking?), who despite holding the title of president of the "Council of Safety," challenged his chief political rival to a duel. His rival lived. Button popped off.

Posted by Amy Ridenour at 12:00 AM

Friday, July 02, 2004

"The Ba'ath Regime Were the Nazis of the Second Half of the 20th Century"

The Right Thoughts blog has a very interesting piece by a U.S. Marine, who describes his experiences in Iraq.

Posted by Amy Ridenour at 1:59 AM

If He Says You Are Ugly, Too, Will You Give Him Even More Money?

Would you expect money from someone after you called them a "cracker," or charged them with racism?

Me neither, but it is a fundraising technique that seems to work well for Jesse Jackson.

Project 21 has just issued a condemnation of NASCAR for renewing its support of Jesse Jackson's Rainbow/PUSH Coalition.

Says Project 21's Reginald Jones: "I think it's a disgrace that NASCAR is once again aligning itself with Jesse Jackson. It's a disgrace to the fans and a disgrace to the sport. As one of NASCAR's most hardcore fans, I'll personally be out there at the races letting NASCAR officials and fans alike know that the sport should not be falling prey to Jackson's politically correct scams."

Jones adds: "Until the NBA starts recruiting more Hispanics, the nation's largest minority and an underrepresented segment of professional basketball players, I don't think NASCAR should be looking to promote anyone but deserving drivers. If Jackson truly wants to integrate NASCAR, he needs to be out raising money for minority drivers instead of shaking down the front office."

Posted by Amy Ridenour at 1:41 AM

Thursday, July 01, 2004

Black Activists Commend Secretary Powell, Bush Administration for Trying to Curb Ethnic Violence in Sudan

The black conservative group Project 21 has issued a press release commending the Bush Administration for its efforts to prevent further violence in Sudan.

Says Project 21's Kevin Martin: "I applaud President Bush and Secretary Powell for taking a leadership role in this attempt to end what I call pure ethnic cleansing in the Danfur region of Sudan." Martin joined other black activists in a human rights demonstration outside the Embassy of Sudan today.

Posted by Amy Ridenour at 4:05 PM

Saddam Innocent?

Jude Wanniski believes Saddam Hussein looks innocent : far as I can recall, there have been no assertions of the "brutality" of Saddam's regime from anyone but the Iraqi exiles associated with Ahmet Chalabi or those Kurds who fought on the Iranian side in the Iran/Iraq war. There are all kinds of anecdotes about Saddam doing dreadful things, entire books written about them, but the source of all of them is the same pool of people who have been feeding faked "evidence" of WMD and Al Qaeda connections to our government...

...there is no easy way out for the Bush administration in explaining how it could have been snookered from first to last about Saddam Hussein... he doesn't seem to have done anything wrong.
We'll see what he thinks -- what the world thinks -- after Saddam's trial.

Assuming we can bear to watch it.

Posted by Amy Ridenour at 2:19 AM

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