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Oh, Brother

The bro comes home.  (yeah, yeah, I know it’s Fox but in this rare case, it happens to be accurate. The footage has not been digitally retouched):

Check it out here.

Cool.

**********************************

Some of the comments I’m reading are encouraging readers to jump on the “Let’s pin the Benghazi disaster on Obama right before the election!” bandwagon.  Nah gunna do it.  Here’s why:

1.) It has been our policy here at The Confluence since 2008 to not propagate either party’s memes or propaganda.

2.) In this case, it would be disrespectful of the four embassy staff who died there to cynically use their deaths as a way to score political points.  I’d rather keep the investigation free of electoral politics.  There *is* a story there and people should be held accountable if they neglectfully or knowingly ignored warnings that put these people in danger but we must weigh this against the diplomatic mission and the current events and developing situation in Libya.  That will require a thoughtful investigation so that the State department and the CIA benefit from learning what went wrong and who spilled the beans, etc.  It will NOT benefit from a cynical election year ploy to undermine the State department and foreign policy in order to disgrace Obama.  Let him take himself down, he seems to be doing a pretty good job of it without any assistance.

3.) Hillary Clinton is a big girl.  Yes, she is.  This is her job.  Let her do it.  If she gets called to Capital Hill to testify, she can handle it.  The Republicans have inadvertently screwed themselves here.  She’s a seasoned veteran of cynical, hypocritical, politically motivated investigations.  I hope they won’t call her up before the investigation is complete but even if the House Republicans rush her, I feel confident that she will do her homework and do the best that she can.  Let’s not undermine her mojo by trying to protect her.  We overcome sexism and misogynism by taking on challenges and rising to the occasion.

4.) We let Bush get away with a lot of really nasty s%^&.  He started an unnecessary war in Iraq based on lies, he and his party drained the Treasury to reward their contractor cronies, they increased the deficit, refused to “cut and run” (it doesn’t get more cynical than THAT phrase) and the whole fiasco has destabilized part of asia and cost thousands of military servicepeople their lives and limbs.  If you weren’t upset by all that by demanding accountability from Cheney and Bush but you’re getting your knickers in a twist over Benghazi, then you have your priorities seriously messed up.  You need to do some soul searching.

The foreign policy debate is coming up between Romney and Obama and I suspect that much will be made of Benghazi.  Or not.  I think this could backfire on the Republicans because there is a way for Obama and the Democrats to go on the offensive here that might win them back a bunch of Clintonistas.  It would require Obama to fake passion about something.  And that’s the problem.  He’s not a passionate guy and he doesn’t appear to believe in much of anything so any attempt at passion will look forced.  I dunno, maybe one of the debate prep team members will slap him around and knock some sense into him.  We’ll see.  But if they’ve been paying attention, they will know what to do.  This could be the Republicans third rail if they’re not careful.

These photos that were requested in this case are not particularly sensational.

Oh, no — THESE photos weren’t important at all:

Rape is Rape … Except When You’re a Female Detainee
When Obama Whitewashed Rape

The court order stipulated the release of an estimated 2,000 photographs taken from Abu Ghraib and six other prisons across Iraq and Afghanistan. According to Major General Antonio Taguba, who led the formal inquiry into prisoner abuse at Abu Ghraib, the photographs in question depict “torture, abuse, rape and every indecency.”

Explaining his decision to ignore the order, President Obama argued, “The most direct consequence of releasing [the photographs], I believe, would be to inflame anti-American public opinion and to put our troops in greater danger.”

I think I found the perfect keynote speaker for your college’s next Take Back the Night rally!

President Obama went on to add, apparently with no sense of shame whatsoever, “I want to emphasize that these photos that were requested in this case are not particularly sensational.”

And as a precautionary measure against the possibility that rape is actually “sensational” — especially when perpetrated (and gleefully documented) by the U.S military — the Pentagon’s official position on this matter is that the photographs in question do not even exist. Indeed, it’s unlikely that any of this “rape” stuff even happened. There’s certainly no evidence to support such wild claims.

But what about the video Major General Taguba obtained during his investigation, which shows “a male American soldier in uniform sodomizing a female detainee“? Don’t worry, that’s not “particularly sensational.” No need to fret! Move along! Also: that video doesn’t exist, and that never happened.

How about the photograph that depicts “an American soldier apparently raping a female prisoner”? Or the photograph that shows “a male translator raping a male detainee”? Or the countless photographs which are said to document “sexual assaults on prisoners with objects including a truncheon, wire and a phosphorescent tube”? How about the photo that shows “a female prisoner having her clothing forcibly removed to expose her breasts”?

That’s just a long list of “not particularly sensational”, misinformed speculation. Please try to remember: these photographs don’t even exist, according to the Obama Administration.

You could go read the whole thing but, it will probably make you sick. And then you wouldn’t want to know this:

Justice Department Ends Investigation Into Bush-Era Torture, With No Charges

Well, that’s that.

No Republican Left Behind

Suckas!

Suckas!

Well, I don’t know about you, but I am simply THRILLED with the liberal slant of Barack Obama’s economic policy. As you know, I’ve been a tad…put off, shall we say, by some of his nods in the conservative direction. You know, what with anti-choice CDS sufferer Tom Daschle being put in charge of things like HHS and health care reform, and that Rick Warren invocation brouhaha, and the whole Sanjay Gupta “I Lie About Our Health Care System On The Teevee” Surgeon General thing,  and elevating anti-choice/anti-gay marriage Tim Kaine to the head of the DNC, and staying the course with Robert Gates…and that’s just in the past few weeks! I’ve hardly had time to freak out about the Middle East, Russia, Caroline Kennedy or the coming Depression, what with all this tsuris!

So, our President-Elect is on the socially conservative side, and well, he might not “end the war in Iraq” after all. But who cares? As we know, those issues are quite unimportant when you consider that Obama really knows how to fix the economy. I am sure he will seize this unique opportunity to shore up the ravaged institutions of FDR’s New Deal and begin to rebuild a strong middle class and fill in the Reaganite holes in the social safety net. After all, that’s what Democrats do!

Ahhhh, who the fuck am I kidding?

Did you read what he said today? Did you? I swear to the Giant Green Lizard, my liberal eyeballs were bleeding by the time I was finished. Misery loves company, so let’s take a closer look. We’ll skip all the Orwellian nonsense at the beginning about changing and believing, yada yada yada (wonder if the Groper, Jon Favreau, wrote it?).

Here’s what he says about health care reform:

To improve the quality of our health care while lowering its cost, we will make the immediate investments necessary to ensure that within five years all of America’s medical records are computerized. This will cut waste, eliminate red tape, and reduce the need to repeat expensive medical tests. But it just won’t save billions of dollars and thousands of jobs, it will save lives by reducing the deadly but preventable medical errors that pervade our health care system.

Um, huh? Is that it? Modernizing computer records? I’m sorry, but could he think ANY SMALLER? Do we really need to discuss the massive problems our health care system faces? And how will this cover the 47 million without health care now? Besides…is it me, or is this idea kind of, um, unoriginal?

In 2003, President Bush said he wanted most Americans’ medical records to be computerized within 10 years. The savings from moving away from paper could rise into the hundreds of millions a year, the president said. And electronic records can reduce medical errors, proponents said.

Could it get any worse? Oh, Yes, it can! The words of our Glorious Leader on education:

To give our children the chance to live out their dreams in a world that’s never been more competitive, we will equip tens of thousands of schools, community colleges and public universities with 21st-century classrooms, labs and libraries. We’ll provide new computers, new technology, and new training for teachers so that students in Chicago and Boston can compete with kids in Beijing for the high-tech, high-wage jobs of the future.

Chicago and Boston, huh? Gosh, wonder why he picked those areas out as examples. I’ll tell you something, the inner city schools in many other ares of the country need help too…but then again, Obama needs to keep his patrons in his home city and Uncle Teddy’s home city fat and happy!

Anywho, that stuff about new technology and the jobs of the future sounds kinda familiar. Where have I heard it before?

For Immediate Release
Office of the Press Secretary
January 21, 2004

Fact Sheet: Jobs for the 21st Century

Presidential Action:

In his State of the Union Address, President Bush announced Jobs for the 21st Century — a comprehensive plan to better prepare workers for jobs in the new millennium by strengthening post-secondary education and job training and improving high school education. This plan includes over $500 million in new funding for education and job training programs.

(snip)

Improving High School Education: The President’s plan will also improve the quality of education at our Nation’s high schools and better prepare students for success in higher education and the job market — including $100 million to help striving readers and $120 million to improve math education.

Continue reading

The REAL Story of the Financial Crisis: A Play in One Dishonest Act.

(Happy New Year to all you Joooz out there! May it bring health, happiness and the strength to make it through the tough times ahead.)

Trust Me!

Trust Me!

SCENE I: The Oval Office. GEORGE W. BUSH is sitting behind his desk, staring at the ceiling, bored. There are two chairs on either side of his desk; one is a wing chair, and one is a chair that swivels. The back of that chair is facing the audience; light snoring issues forth from it, but we cannot see who occupies it.

BUSH is waiting for HENRY PAULSON, his Secretary of the Treasury, to come in and tell him what to do about the credit crisis. He amuses himself by spinning in circles in his leather executive chair.

A knock is heard at the door.

BUSH: Come in, Paulie! (continues spinning around in his chair)

PAULSON (entering with a smile): Mr. President!

BUSH (stopping the spinning to look at PAULSON): Geez, Paulie, am I glad to see you! (Tries to get up from the chair to shake PAULSON’s hand, staggers and puts his hand on the desk to recover)

PAULSON (indulgently): Now, George, I’ve warned you about spinning in that chair – it always makes you dizzy!

BUSH (petulantly): Then they shouldn’t make it so much fun! (refocusing, gesturing for PAULSON to sit down) Anyway, Paulie, what’s goin’ on in this here economy?

PAULSON (sitting in the wing chair beside BUSH’s desk): Mr. President, we’re in a heckuva mess, I tell you. The credit market is completely frozen. No one will lend businesses money so that they can continue, well, doing business. It’s all because of that Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae stuff. They went a little crazy with those subprime mortgages.

Continue reading

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