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Bush-is-an-idiot-camp grows


Mark Stapleton
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Even hardline conservatives are getting worried about President Bush's stewardship of the war they wanted, as this recent article explains. BTW, Bush was recently challenged to a public debate by Iranian leader Dr. Ahmaninejad. Of course, Bush and his supporters declined. Why? Are they scared?

http://www.alternet.org/story/41086/

What makes you think Ahmaninejad is deserving of that honor? Do you think the director of the California penal system is obligated to debate Charles Manson? Ridiculous. If you bothered to read a newspaper today (big if), you'd know that Iran failed yesterday to comply with a United Nations deadline to halt its uranium enrichment work. This is a global problem, not just a US problem. If anyone should be debating Ahmaninejad, it's Kofi Annan.

I can't see the relevance of your analogy. Are you placing Ahmaninejad in the same category as Charles Manson? Why?

And why do you state that debating George Bush is an 'honor'? Is he royalty or something? Why wouldn't the US President jump at the chance to state his case before a global audience, if he thinks he is right? It seems a bit strange given that the US sells itself globally as the bastion of freedom and liberty. Why run from a free and open debate? Are there things the US doesn't want the world to know?

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The wartime commander in chief also had a wire over his shoulder

and a box taped to his back, evidently.

Kerry's running mate John Edwards appeared on the Tonight Show during the campaign, and Jay Leno showed a photo of Bush's back during the debate and asked Edwards about the evidence that Bush was wired. Instead of addressing the issue, Edwards cracked a lame, single-line joke about it (as I recall he said he thought the thing on Bush's back was "his battery") and the subject was dropped.

That's an example of how deeply fear has been established now in America. If you're a politician running for office and some especially sensitive thing about the ruling regime is mentioned at all, you'd best just laugh it off. (And of course lose the election.)

Ron, I was just thinking about the debate scandal today. How its been dropped and never even been picked up again, even on left sites like Counterpunch, and the obvious gatekeeper site Common Dreams.

Was this controversy ever resolved, or was it just dropped into memory hole?

Can you imagine how busy the media would be reminding us of it had John (I would have invaded Iraq, even had I known there were no weapons of mass destruction) kerry been miked for the debate?

Did Bush directly lie about this one, or did he even need to?

One more thing that makes me ABSOLUTELY STUNNED THAT THERE ARE PEOPLE WHO THINK THAT THIS RIGHT WING FANATICISM IS ONLY ABOUT BUSH.

Edited by Nathaniel Heidenheimer
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Bush is quite clearly an imbecile even by American standards.

However he just this once shows a smidgeon of wisdom in refusing to get involved involved in a debate with that revolting little racist Dr. Ahmaninejad

Even by American standards? Could you please explain that.

Indeed Andy.

Your apparent anti-Americanism is of concern, because it is not in this instance critical comment about US Government policy or actions, but an insulting remark pertaining to the intelligence of Americans as a whole.

I trust you do not really consider Americans - as a people - less intelligent than Brits or others?

If so, where's your evidence?

More importantly, do you have any evidence for the proposition that Dr. Ahmaninejad is:

(i) dimunitive in physical stature, or

(ii) a 'racist'?

The matter is of some current importance, as malicious (and in my view, quite unjustifiable) claims about Iran and its leaders are being widely hurled around in western public debate at present, helping to create an atmosphere conducive to a military assault on Iran that could precipitate World War Three.

Edited by Sid Walker
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If one takes the media as representative it's like watching a washing(ton)machine stuck on 'spin'. It'll never get there till the box is kicked.(pref by ballot) However, the media is not representative, (nor is the spining going on on the forum). There's endless evidence of americans from all walks having a solid grasp on reality. I don't think it's easy to criticise ones homeland, there's a lot stacked against such things. The society that can do so, openly internationally is a sign of the possible good. The reclassificatiomn debate going on in the other thread is more of a worry. Don't forget there are friends overseas where US laws do not apply."In the end, we will remember not the words of our enemies, but the silence of our friends." - MLK jr

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If one takes the media as representative it's like watching a washing(ton)machine stuck on 'spin'. It'll never get there till the box is kicked.(pref by ballot) However, the media is not representative, (nor is the spining going on on the forum). There's endless evidence of americans from all walks having a solid grasp on reality. I don't think it's easy to criticise ones homeland, there's a lot stacked against such things. The society that can do so, openly internationally is a sign of the possible good. The reclassificatiomn debate going on in the other thread is more of a worry. Don't forget there are friends overseas where US laws do not apply."In the end, we will remember not the words of our enemies, but the silence of our friends." - MLK jr

As an Australian, I have to acknowledge that Ozzies show far less intelligence at election time than Americns.

At least in the USA the powers that be find it necessary to fiddle the count.

We don't even have that excuse in Australia - and have re-elected war criminal Howard three times.

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I don't know about that Sid. To explore the election system in Oz, a friend of mine and I formed a party we called the Christmas Party in 92'. He changed his name to O. Santa Claus and ran on a ticket with Lord Bloody Wog Rollo,professional alarmist. Out of a field of about 72 (NSW senate) many far more deserving, we came about 16th with only 1700 or so primaries. In the process we found that the flow of preferences as directed by parties, not the voter, got a number of candidates past the post in a way that did not reflect the voters intention. It's better than the past gerrymanders, but there is still a measure of a vote rigging where an overtall preference is not reflected in the result.

All that aside, yes Howard. ... Again, as in the US the media distorts reality. I think if all things were equal, the right wing would not have been in power hardly at all in the last 40 years.

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W in 04 was very well prepared and rehersed.

Who was he talking to in the debate when he interrupted himself to say, "Let me finish"? No one was stopping him.

An interesting article on Bush being wired.

Salon The Web

Bush wore a device during debate

Physicist says imaging techniques prove the president's bulge was not caused by wrinkled clothing.

By Kevin Berger

Page 1October 29, 2004 | George W. Bush tried to laugh off the bulge. "I don't know what that is," he said on "Good Morning America" on Wednesday, referring to the infamous protrusion beneath his jacket during the presidential debates. "I'm embarrassed to say it's a poorly tailored shirt."

Dr. Robert M. Nelson, however, was not laughing. He knew the president was not telling the truth. And Nelson is neither conspiracy theorist nor midnight blogger. He's a senior research scientist for NASA and for Caltech's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, and an international authority on image analysis. Currently he's engrossed in analyzing digital photos of Saturn's moon Titan, determining its shape, whether it contains craters or canyons.

For the past week, while at home, using his own computers, and off the clock at Caltech and NASA, Nelson has been analyzing images of the president's back during the debates. A professional physicist and photo analyst for more than 30 years, he speaks earnestly and thoughtfully about his subject. "I am willing to stake my scientific reputation to the statement that Bush was wearing something under his jacket during the debate," he says. "This is not about a bad suit. And there's no way the bulge can be described as a wrinkled shirt."

Nelson and a scientific colleague produced the photos from a videotape, recorded by the colleague, who has chosen to remain anonymous, of the first debate. The images provide the most vivid details yet of the bulge beneath the president's suit. Amateurs have certainly had their turn at examining the bulge, but no professional with a résumé as impressive as Nelson's has ventured into public with an informed opinion. In fact, no one to date has enhanced photos of Bush's jacket to this degree of precision, and revealed what appears to be some kind of mechanical device with a wire snaking up the president's shoulder toward his neck and down his back to his waist.

Nelson stresses that he's not certain what lies beneath the president's jacket. He offers, though, "that it could be some type of electronic device -- it's consistent with the appearance of an electronic device worn in that manner." The image of lines coursing up and down the president's back, Nelson adds, is "consistent with a wire or a tube."

Nelson used the computer software program Photoshop to enhance the texture in Bush's jacket. The process in no way alters the image but sharpens its edges and accents the creases and wrinkles. You've seen the process performed a hundred times on "CSI": pixelated images are magnified to reveal a clear definition of their shape.

Bruce Hapke, professor emeritus of planetary science in the department of geology and planetary science at the University of Pittsburgh, reviewed the Bush images employed by Nelson, whom he calls "a very highly respected scientist in his field." Hapke says Nelson's process of analyzing the images are the "exact same methods we use to analyze images taken by spacecraft of planetary surfaces. It does not introduce any artifacts into the picture in any way."

How can Nelson be certain there's some kind of mechanical device beneath Bush's jacket? It's all about light and shadows, he says. The angles at which the light in the studio hit Bush's jacket expose contours that fit no one's picture of human anatomy and wrinkled shirts. And Nelson compared the images to anatomy texts. He also experimented with wrinkling shirts in various configurations, wore them under his jacket under his bathroom light, and couldn't produce anything close to the Bush bulge.

In the enhanced photo of the first debate, Nelson says, look at the horizontal white line in middle of the

president's back. You'll see a shadow. "That's telling me there's definitely a bulge," he says. "In fact, it's how we measure the depths of the craters on the moon or on Mars. We look at the angle of the light and the length of shadow they leave. In this case, that's clearly a crater that's under the horizontal line -- it's clearly a rim of a bulge protruding upward, one due to forces pushing it up from beneath."

Hapke, too, agrees that the bulge is neither anatomy nor a wrinkled shirt. "I would think it's very hard to avoid the conclusion that there's something underneath his jacket," he says. "It would certainly be consistent with some kind of radio receiver and a wire."

Nelson admits that he's a Democrat and plans to vote for John Kerry. But he takes umbrage at being accused of partisanship. "Everyone wants to think my colleague and I are just a bunch of dope-crazed ravaged Democrats who are looking to insult the president at the last minute," he says. "And that's not what this is about. This is scientific analysis. If the bulge were on Bill Clinton's back and he was lying about it, I'd have to say the same thing."

"Look, he says, "I'm putting myself at risk for exposing this. But this is too important. It's not about my reputation. If they force me into an early retirement, it'll be worth it if the public knows about this. It's outrageous statements that I read that the president is wearing nothing under there. There's clearly something there."

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Ron, I was just thinking about the debate scandal today. How its been dropped and never even been picked up again, even on left sites like Counterpunch, and the obvious gatekeeper site Common Dreams.

Was this controversy ever resolved, or was it just dropped into memory hole?

There was no real controversy, because the real possibility that Bush was cheating in the debate was basically a non-issue. There were a few obscure articles online like the Salon article quoted above, but the Democratic vice presidential candidate just laughing about it says it all. The fact is that most people just didn't give a damn. It says something about America today, but I don't know what. There are a lot of things I have quit trying to figure out.

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I don't know about that Sid. To explore the election system in Oz, a friend of mine and I formed a party we called the Christmas Party in 92'. He changed his name to O. Santa Claus and ran on a ticket with Lord Bloody Wog Rollo,professional alarmist. Out of a field of about 72 (NSW senate) many far more deserving, we came about 16th with only 1700 or so primaries. In the process we found that the flow of preferences as directed by parties, not the voter, got a number of candidates past the post in a way that did not reflect the voters intention. It's better than the past gerrymanders, but there is still a measure of a vote rigging where an overtall preference is not reflected in the result.

All that aside, yes Howard. ... Again, as in the US the media distorts reality. I think if all things were equal, the right wing would not have been in power hardly at all in the last 40 years.

Well, now to say somehing in defence of Australians' peculiar proclivity for re-electing - and re-electing - war criminals like Howard, it should be noted that no other country in the world is so infested with the Murdoch media stable.

When I last heard the figure cited, Murdoch's papers had something like 80% of the national daily readership. Is that your understanding John?

Out in the bush with satellite TV only, I notice that Fox News 'services' are advertised even when I'm tuned to the BBC.

It isn't Australia at all any more... welcome to Murdochalia.

Incidentally, I don't agree that Murdoch and the other media bosses down under always support the conservatives. When they get a good fix in with the ALP, they're quite happy to back that horse instead. This helps foster the illusion that the people have a real choice. They do, but not in the way it's usually presented. They can vote for the Murdoch-preferred Government - or for the losers.

Not that I want to sound like a consel for despair. But I do think we need to wake up and face reality. The western media is the key problem. It no longer facilitates democracy - if it ever did. It channels democracy in directions acceptable to plutocrats.

Oh, and did I forget to mention...? It also allows criminals in very high positions to get away with atrocities such as the assassination of JFK and 9-11.

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I don't know Sid. It would depend on the survey and the questions asked and who is asked. I don't watch commercial news. SBS with its replay of the overseas news services, plus the odd letterman for light relief is good enough IMO. I ultimately have faith in the maturity of the australian working class. Media aided aberrations like Howard go and another Gough comes again.

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Polls show opposition to Iraq war at all-time high

Sixty percent also say terrorism is more likely in US because of Iraq.

By Tom Regan

Christian Science Monitor

A series of polls taken over the last few weeks of August show that support for the war in Iraq among Americans is at an all-time low. Almost two-thirds of Americans in each of three major polls say that they oppose the war, the highest totals since pollsters starting asking Americans the question three years ago. Many of the polls were conducted in advance of the fifth anniversary of the September 11, 2001 attacks on Washington and New York.

AMERICA IN IRAQ

Sectarian violence spiraling, Pentagon report confirms

CIVILIAN DEATHS INCREASE 51 PERCENT

By Ann Scott Tyson

Washington Post

WASHINGTON - Rising sectarian bloodshed has pushed violence in Iraq to its highest level in more than two years, and preventing civil war is now the most urgent mission of the growing contingent of 140,000 U.S. soldiers in the country, according to a new Pentagon report released Friday.

Executions, kidnappings, and other sectarian attacks targeting Iraqi civilians have soared over the past four months, contributing to a 51 percent rise in casualties among the population, the report said. In the past three months, more than 3,000 Iraqis were killed or wounded each month, with 2,000 of the deaths the result of sectarian incidents, according to the report.

The Pentagon report, though consistent with what news media have reported for months, is significant because it represents an official acknowledgment of trends that are widely believed to be driving the country toward full-scale civil war.

"Sustained ethno-sectarian violence is the greatest threat to security and stability in Iraq,'' the report stated.

"Conditions that could lead to civil war exist in Iraq,'' the report said, while maintaining civil war can still be prevented. "Coalition forces and the ISF [iraqi Security Forces] are responding by increased targeting of both Sunni and Shiite death squads.''

The Pentagon's latest quarterly report on security in Iraq, mandated by Congress, follows last month's dire testimony before Congress by two top U.S. generals, including Gen. John Abizaid, the senior American commander in the Middle East, who said sectarian violence in Iraq is worse than ever before, and could lead to civil war.

According to recent statements by President Bush:

"Our commanders and diplomats on the ground believe that Iraq has not descended into a civil war.

"If we give up the fight in the streets of Baghdad we will face the terrorists in the streets of our own cities."

"The security of the civilized world depends on victory in the war on terror, and that depends on victory in Iraq. So the United States of America will not leave until victory is achieved."

"Victory in Iraq will result in a democracy that is a friend of America and an ally in the war on terror. Victory in Iraq will be a crushing defeat to our enemies who have staked so much on the battle there,"

"Our commanders and our diplomats on the ground in Iraq believe that it's (civil war) not the case. They report that only a small number of Iraqis are engaged in sectarian violence, while the overwhelming majority want peace and a normal life in a unified country."

"Some politicians look at our efforts in Iraq and see a diversion from the war on terror. We should all agree that the battle for Iraq is now central to the ideological struggle of the 21st century."
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