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Jerry Springer to Seek GOP Presidential Nod November 18, 2006

Posted by chuckwh in News and politics.
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Jerry Springer today announced he would be a Republican candidate for the 2008 presidential election.

“I’m a big believer in the power of the people,” Springer said in a statement. “They pretty much rock.”

Springer expects good returns from the Fox Television Network, especially in light of its excellent expose of O.J. Simpson.

“Fox gets America,” Springer says, “and I fully expect to get a bounce from whatever poll they come up with.”

 For reference, check this link: http://ebaumsworld.com/2006/09/springeradmits.html

Obama Concedes Iowa November 9, 2006

Posted by chuckwh in Barack Obama, Barak Obama, Iowa, Iowa Caucus, News and politics, Obama, Oprah Winfrey, Senator Barack Obama.
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Potential Democratic candidate Barack Obama (D, IL) today conceded Iowa, saying on the Oprah Winfrey show that, “Even if I were to run, and I am not suggesting that I am a candidate, but if I were to run, obviously I would have to concede to a defeat in Iowa to a very good man, Gov. Tom Vilsack, who has run the great state of Iowa admirably and professionally. He’s done great things for Iowa, and has lived up to the challenge of governing that state with aplomb.” Vilsack is governor of Iowa and the first stated Democratic presidential candidate. “Actually,” and with that Obama held up a ripe plum, “I meant to say that governing with plums is not easy, especially in a state that faces as many challenges as Iowa.
Yup, this is Oprah

“I think, especially, his challenge is a unique one in America, in that, and I say this with all candor, that, in rejecting the common notion that Iowa must undergo a conversion from an agricultural state to an industrial one, he has spoken to the people, and I admire him for this. Instead, he’s hooked into this notion, this audacity of hope, that perhaps Iowa is not a corn state, but a plum state. I see, because of this man’s vision, orchards of plum trees in Iowa, rising against the purple sunset.”

Upon saying that, the audience cheered wildly, and one woman ran up to Obama and jumped into his lap and kissed him. She was taken away by security guards, but could be heard screaming, “I love you, Obama, and I would give my plums for you!!! ”

In related news, former Virginia Governor Mark Warner, apparently hearing the approaching feet of the coming Vilsack blitzkrieg, today officially bowed out of the Democratic presidential nomination race.

http://www.cnn.com/2006/POLITICS/11/09/vilsack.president.ap/index.html?eref=rss_topstories

Giants Vs. Bears November 9, 2006

Posted by chuckwh in News and politics.
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This is how it is.

As a Bears fan, I give my pals no chance in the Meadowlands, even with the NYG injuries.

Grossman is too much of a freak. He will pass to anyone who has colors. He is Brett Favre, minus all the yardage.

Another Ho-hum midterm election. November 9, 2006

Posted by chuckwh in News and politics.
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Wake me up when it’s over.

I miss controversy. Really, I do.

The next question is, who replaces Al Gore? Who best represents his values?

His VP, Hillary Clinton? Or the new Rock Star, Barak Obama?

Al Gore’s “October Surprise” November 6, 2006

Posted by chuckwh in 9-11, Al Gore, Bush, Congressional ethics, Donald Rumsfeld, George W. Bush, Gore, Iraq, Neo-cons, Neo-conservatives, News and politics, Politics, Scandals, Terrorism.
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Al Gore today, in a surprise pre-election announcement, has pardoned several well-known Republican criminals, including Bill O’Reilly (imprisoned for illegally obtaining abortion clinic patient records), Donald Rumsfeld (who along with Dick Cheney was nailed for racketeering and embezzlement during the Iraq Reconstruction Project — see this link for background on the Bill of Hope), and several other small-time Republican crooks. Notably absent from the list was Senator Tom DeLay.

Press Secretary Aaron Sorkin today said Gore is doing this as part of national reconciliation efforts that began when Republicans were routinely put in prison back in 2001, when Florida Governor Jeb Bush and Florida Secretary of State Katherine Harris were thrown in jail for vote fraud.

He is also offering “limited amnesty” to Republican sex offenders who have not yet been apprehended and who come forward and show a willingness to adhere to a GPS-based tracking system, and who voluntarily submit to psychological counseling. Insiders say that the reasons for this are more practical than a simple desire for national reconciliation. “Our medium security prisons just don’t have enough room for all the offenders,” says one official close to the administration.

In fact, prison overcrowding has again become a major issue, in spite of recent changes in criminal drug laws that no longer mandate imprisonment for minor drug offenses and have returned the focus to drug rehabilitation. Studies are beginning to pour in showing that, since the crackdown on Republican corruption, the prison population once dominated by drug offenders and minorities is being replaced by Republicans.

With the mid-term elections tomorrow, and the nation enjoying unprecedented peace and prosperity, electoral interest seems to be at an all time low, and Gore appears to be trying to remind voters why he was re-elected in the first place. While neocons refer to Gore as “the appeasement president”, the fact is that Gore has become a world leader based on his skills at managing reconciliation on a global level, while driving successful worldwide anti-poverty and environmental programs. He has, in other words, not only not squandered the good will that wrapped the U.S. in an emotional blanket of sympathy after the 9/11 attacks, he’s capitalized them in a huge way, one that’s easy to take for granted in a less dangerous world.

When things are going well, it’s easy to become complacent, and Gore apparently is trying to find a way to remind voters how dangerous such complacency can be. “It’s really hard for most voters to imagine how bad things could become if the current Republican leadership were ever to take control of the government,” says one Democratic campaign pollster, who is hopeful that the neoconservative wing of the Republican party is finally being dismembered through its delirious combination of sex and corruption scandals, as well as voter antipathy towards the neoconservative doctrine of perpetual war.

Also, in a speech late yesterday, Gore offered what he called some personal advice to the challenger in his first presidential election, George W. Bush. “I think maybe it’s time for George to check himself out of the Betty Ford clinic. He’s been in there, what? Five, six years? I know it was a tough election, but it’s time to move on.”

Iraqi Armed Forces near 300,000 November 3, 2006

Posted by chuckwh in Al Gore, Bits from the New York Times, Foreign Policy, Iraq, Iraq army, Iraq War, News and politics.
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In an article for the journal, Military Review, U.S. Lt. Col. Karl D. Grunowoski writes that the Iraqi Army is now the largest and most professional service outside of Israel.

Grunowoski, who served as a military adviser in Iraq for three years, says that under Saddam, the Iraqi military was already “reasonably disciplined”, but that the force is now capable of invading and conquering another nation with “a well maintained, modern force of its own.”

President Gore has come under fire for helping Iraq transition from a dictatorship to a democracy from both the left and the right. The left is unhappy that Gore is helping the military infrastructure, and the right is unhappy that the military infrastructure Gore is helping is an Arab one. Somehow, conservatives see a threat to Israel.

However, Gore rightly promotes the notion of a strong Iraqi army as nothing more than a “national defense force”, because it has, basically, no air force.

In other words, Grunowoski is wrong. The reason, from a military standpoint, is fairly simple to grasp. You can’t invade anyone these days, without a pretty decent air force.

If the Iraqis need air power, under a treaty signed by the Iraqis and the U.S., America will provide it, which pretty much leaves Israel out of the equation. Israel, obviously, is not going to attack Iraq for any reason, and the treaty specifically stipulates that an Iraqi “invasion against any sovereign state” will not be supported with American air power.

With Saddam out of the picture, the list of candidate nations for an Iraqi invasion have dwindled to about zero. The booming oil fields near Basra and Mosul (1) have made most Iraqis rich, and Saddam’s claims that Kuwait is a province of Iraq is now just a small footnote in the type of history only PhD candidates have enough staying power for.

Iraqi motivation for a large “internal” army is centered on internal politics, specifically, as a counterforce to the extreme fanatics who still cling to the hope their voice will be heard, and who tend to pick on Iraq because of its recent close association with America.

Let’s face it, the transition of Muslim fanaticism to the fringes has not been a delicate one. Recent reports suggest that Baghdad has become another Ulster, except for one key difference: Ulster was about a population that felt subjugated, whereas in Baghdad, most people just aren’t that interested in the extreme politics of the Fedayeen, and actually, simply feel victimized by them.

The recent spate of suicide bombings don’t, if you read Iraqi blogs, reveal the will of the people. A defense force capable of doing simple things, such as enforcing curfews, when needed, is not a bad thing. Given the behavior of the Fedayeen, another 200,000 would not be a bad thing either.

1. For a real look at just how deeply buried in oil fields Iraq is, and how silly it would be for a country to be dumb enough to conquer Iraq and not find a way to make the people that nation conquered  REALLY happy (not that such an event is a likely scenario, of course), see this map.