Monday, December 05, 2005


“... if Congress did not make permanent just one of its tax cuts, the repeal of estate taxes, it would generate 290 billion over the next decade. That itself pays for most of Katrina and Iraq.”

Also, he writes in the same essay, “The U.S. Congress is a national embarrassment, except that no one is embarrassed. There are a few men of conscience left, like John McCain, but McCain's pleas against pork seem to have absolutely no effect. They are beginning to have the feel of a quaint hobby, like collecting exotic stamps.

Today's Republicans believe in pork, but they don't believe in government. So we have the largest government in history but one that is weak and dysfunctional. Public spending is a cynical game of buying votes or campaign contributions, an utterly corrupt process run by lobbyists and special interests with no concern for the national interest. So we shovel out billions on "Homeland Security" to stave off nonexistent threats to Wisconsin, Wyoming and Montana while New York and Los Angeles remain unprotected. We mismanage crises with a crazy-quilt patchwork of federal, local and state authorities—and sing paeans to federalism to explain our incompetence. We denounce sensible leadership and pragmatism because they mean compromise and loss of ideological purity. Better to be right than to get Iraq right.” —Fareed Zakaria, NEWSWEEK, September 26, 2005, p. 38


Someone on Air America radio today said that Rove has raised lying to such a level that lying was never more honored in American history. Lying is a Republican art. So how come Bush’s base supports such lying?

I’ve said this at least three times. One more time won’t hurt anything. And this has a bit of a different twist. Bush supporters accept Republican lies because they can’t recognize lies when they encounter them. This is because in church communities, where Bush has his largest base, lying is a highly polished art form which is encouraged by the very atmosphere which fundamentalism and evangelism create. Within church communities, the need to put on a front is stronger than in most of middle-class America. We all lie all the time so I’m not being smug here, but I am pointing out that in the holier than thou atmosphere of hyper-religious communities, the need to lie is a polished art, and in order to be able to lie well, one must believe one’s own lies. In short, studies demonstrate that the very best liars believe their own lies, and where lying is a necessity, there, lying will become a finely honed art. Scary stuff, eh?

"The only thing that saves us from the beaucracy is its inefficiency." —Eugene McCarthy (that fine old liberal from the days when America was a "respected" world leader)

"We have a crisis of leadership in this country. Where are the Washingtons, the Jeffersons, and the Jacksons? I'll tell you where they are—they're playing professional football and baseball." —author unknown

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