• impeach

    by  • August 13, 2008 • too random • 106 Comments

    wayoftheworld_thumb.jpgInvestigation cannot be stopped.   Suskind’s evidence will be examined and acted upon.

    .

    We are in a constitutional crisis.

    Our President and Vice-President, among others, perpetrated fraud in their fabrication of an imminent threat to the US from Saddam Hussein and the country of Iraq.

    These people lied to us.  These people actively, knowingly, and deliberately created fraudulent justifications to invade a sovereign country.

    .

    killing, suffering, horror

    .

    … all of it,

    every scream into bomb’s bloody wreckage,

    crumbled, acrid, suffocating

    shouts and hectic scrambles over shattered, scattered, smoking concrete

    towards limbs seen or dying voices hoped heard …

    .

    All,

    every moment of pain, every eternity of agony and loss

    stared into by hollowed, stunned survivors,

    .

    all,

    as wave, as avalanche, as righteous crush of justice

    will fall upon them, the guilty.

    .

    We must actPlease act.

    -

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    106 Responses to impeach

    1. nitro
      August 13, 2008 at

      I just saw his interview on the Daily Show, and let’s just say that it sucked the Olympic spirit out of me. As much as I hate our national mascot, I’ve also always hated blanket statements for impeachment, based on what often just appeared to be ideologically driven evaluation of the evidence or political mud slinging in response to criticism. But of course, this is a pure fabrication of evidence, making it an impeachable offense. And if we put a cost to this crime, it raises well into the high crimes, and makes a mockery of any misdemeanor that gets some impeached.

      However, I’m afraid that this will simply slip into the mindset that we’ve (speaking in broad collective (Chinese) terms) slipped into. That is, that it sucks, but they were blinded by ideology when evaluating the evidence. Maybe that should be an impeachable offense anyway.

    2. TimB
      August 13, 2008 at

      Take a deep breath Mikey – this long national nightmare will be over in five months and the chimp will go back to Crawford, TX. Impeachment, despite what we saw during Clinton’s term is a serious charge and one that is hard to prove.

      There were more reasons to go to war against Saddam’s regime than just the alleged imminent threat theory. I never felt Iraq was a direct threat to the U.S., nor that it had anything to do with 9/11. On the other hand he had proven himself to be a threat to the region and indirectly to the world, due to that region’s oil production. Revisionist history is convenient, but in the end an unsatisfying way to look at events. Context is key, and the context pre-invasion was very different from what we found out later.

      Now how ’bout that bike racing?

    3. Michael Hernandez
      August 13, 2008 at

      Tim,
      perhaps you should re-evaluate your definition of constitutional crisis.

      This reaches to the very fabric of who we are, as a nation.

      Or, at least who we say we are.

    4. sabine
      August 13, 2008 at

      Bush’s moves should send constitutionalists scrambling to plug up the holes he keeps punching.

      I don’t know what concerns me more, the complete abuse of executive powers, or our country’s apathy towards it.

    5. nitro
      August 13, 2008 at

      Wait, it is the administration that is practicing revisionism, as well as you, Tim. The argument for war was based on WMD. The administration went to the people for the support based on this. He convinced Congress based on this. They are now trying to revise history. But of course, the world police and promoters of democracy arguments would not have flown.

      And the context we have now is that we stirred a hornet’s nest. We’ve killed countless, leaving the fatherless and motherless to pay the bill because that oil is buried under all this mess. Thus the deceitful means did not even justify the end.

    6. August 13, 2008 at

      Little doubt that the checks and balances of the three branches of government seem to have subsided over the course of the last 8 years. Impeachment or no impeachment, the executive branch seemed to have far too much power. Regardless of who wins the next election, I am not sure how that changes.

    7. August 13, 2008 at

      I love it when Vanderhoot goes off, even if he thinks he’s more clever and eloquent than he really is with his blog speak and poetic attempts.

      let’s keep it simple; our government is flawed and when you get down to policy and action, in real terms, there is little true difference between our terribly devised two-party system. and still it’s one of the better gov’s in the world.

      do I hate bush as much as the next logical thinker? sure. will he get impeached? come on. let’s move forward with the lesser of evils and start doing our part, one pedal at a time, to act as responsible citizens – of the planet.

    8. Michael Hernandez
      August 13, 2008 at

      “I love it when Vanderhoot goes off, even if he thinks he’s more clever and eloquent than he really is with his blog speak and poetic attempts.”


      so you say i’m not clever, not eloquent … so, perhaps you’d say i’m ‘simple?’?

      “let’s keep it simple; our government is flawed and when you get down to policy and action, in real terms, there is little true difference between our terribly devised two-party system. and still it’s one of the better gov’s in the world.”

      oh! you want simple, now? ok.
      you say there’s no difference between Dems and Repubes and yet our government is divided. and you say, we still rock and can wave the #1 finger all day long.
      ok.


      “do I hate bush as much as the next logical thinker? sure. will he get impeached? come on. let’s move forward with the lesser of evils and start doing our part, one pedal at a time, to act as responsible citizens – of the planet.”

      impeachment will occur – not because of your hate, or anyone else’s. impeachment will occur because George Bush and Dick Cheney have broken laws fundamental to who we are as Americans. They’ve maliciously violated the constitution of our nation, pete. get away from academia and dig into the real world of us bombing Iraqi people, every death you’ve heard of, glancing read about … maybe even (gasp) seen on tv.
      all of that horror – done illegally, immorally, unethically.
      they will be impeached because this is beyond political party, beyond talking points or heads. this is law.

    9. dizzle
      August 13, 2008 at

      I agree that politicians that break the law ought to be punished. Enough of the elitism that protects the politically well endowed from the laws that are supposed to govern the rest of us mere mortals.

      Which is why I know you will side with me when I call for mayor Gavin Newsome to be thrown in jail for knowingly harboring illegal immigrants and openly and defiantly marrying same sex couples prior to the revision of the law.

      Equality for all. Love our laws or hate them we have to abide by them – each of us. That is what makes a society civil. And we have the power to change the laws at the polls. That makes us free!

    10. Michael Hernandez
      August 13, 2008 at

      “…logic, the refuge of fools. The pedant and the priest have always been the most expert of logicians—and the most diligent disseminators of nonsense and worse.”
      H. L. Mencken. The American Mercury. p. 75.

      Gavin Newsome giving harbor to people (from another country)? gasp!!! marrying two people who love each other? double gasp!!!
      .
      sorry, square peg – you’re three tons full of shit.
      equating some gaybay mayor’s letting people love and live to the invasion and slaughter of countless iraqis…?
      that’s criminal.

    11. Anonymous
      August 13, 2008 at

      Impeachment is the name for a process by which charges are brought against a public official, usually by a legislative body. (It is not, as TimB’s post suggests, a substantive charge in and of itself.) It is analogous to an “indictment” in criminal proceeding. Only if the official is “convicted” of the charges will he or she then be removed from office. Thus, while two presidents (Clinton and Andrew Johnson) have been impeached, both were acquitted and allowed to retain the Presidency.

      I would love it if the House voted to impeach Bush and Cheney, if for no other reason than to disavow their actions to the rest of the world. As for whether the Senate would ever convict or whether the whole process could be completed by January 2009 – not likely.

    12. Michael Hernandez
      August 13, 2008 at

      Let us recall the Nixon resignation. Under pressure from impeachment for far, far – exponentially far less heinous acts by the executive.
      .
      impeachment will occur. convictions will occur. and, yes, it’s likely people will die trying to them done.
      .
      my faith remains in law.
      and us.

    13. nitro
      August 13, 2008 at

      Yeah, impeachment is not a value decision, it is a legal decision. The only reason they got Clinton was because he lied during a deposition. That’s a crime.

      I’d have to say, I’m not sure about the law in this case. They forged a document, but the legal question is whether this represents a crime. If this was an official document supporting an executive order or a statement made under oath, then I guess it would be grounds for impeachment. However, simply lying is not, regardless of how offensive or costly the lie was.

    14. shawndoggy
      August 13, 2008 at

      No, none of that is going to happen. Unless we get some actual smoking gun and not a single source who later recants. Impeachment just isn’t practical now… we can’t get it done in time (in contrast to the remainder of Nixon’s term, for instance). And as with Nixon, there won’t be any prosecutions post-presidency. If it came to that, whoever is president will give a pardon. period.

      You’d be better served by spending some time trying to convince joe average white guy voter that a biracial president won’t be the end of the world.

    15. shawndoggy
      August 13, 2008 at

      Anything can be grounds for impeachment. The standard is nebulous and undefined (“high crimes and misdemeanors”). The constraint, if there is one, is getting the house to bring articles and the senate to convict. But if congress wants the pres out they can do it regardless of the infraction alleged. It’s a removal power, nothing more.

    16. nitro
      August 13, 2008 at

      Crime = crime
      Misdemeanor = crime
      Lying = despicable, sometimes a crime

      The vagueness comes from differentiating what is high and what is not. Hopefully something like jay-walking would not be considered high enough for impeachment, but that would be up to a legislative body to decide as at the very least it is a crime. The indictment analogy is correct, in that you are indicted for crimes, but it takes a court to convict. Impeachment is a legislative indictment for a crime committed by a public official. A crime. Recalls, though not applicable at the federal level, can occur for lesser reasons.

    17. Anonymous
      August 13, 2008 at

      Philosophy consists very largely of one philosopher arguing that all others are jackasses. He usually proves it, and I should add that he also usually proves that he is one himself.

      H. L. Mencken

    18. Michael Hernandez
      August 13, 2008 at

      it’s not just a single source, shawn – and recanting doesn’t do much when there are recordings of the conversation. you can check the transcripts on his website for more info.

      the evidence Suskind puts forward will be investigated fully. It is a crime for the CIA to propagate dis-information to the united states public. It is a direct violation of CIA “tenets”.

      the executive office ordered the CIA to violate the law.

      that’s a smoking gun … among many others.

    19. shawndoggy
      August 13, 2008 at

      it’s my understanding from the blogosphere that the guy who said he was directed to write the fake letter has now backed away from that statement. But I don’t watch enough cable news to verify that meself. Should he be put under oath and asked about it? Hell yeah he should. I’m just saying that the political will to continue the “Bush Lied” investigation isn’t there. The punishment, whatever it will be, is going to be to GWB’s legacy. I’m not saying that that’s how it should be in a perfect world (where I’d also be the benevolent dictator of the world, btw), but that’s how it’s gonna play in our world. Bush will walk. But he might walk with a pardon, which is a figurative kick in the nutz to the old legacy. Shoot, there’s speculation that he might pardon himself (kick himself in the nutz? even better).

      Nitro — querry, I don’t disagree with your analysis, but let’s say for sake of argument that GWB were impeached for jaywalking (or better yet, poaching some singletrack on his mtb… not that I’ve ever done that mind you). And let’s say the senate convicted him and removed him from office. Who’s to say Congress was wrong? I just don’t see the supreme court taking the case. It’s purely a legislative power and Congress gets to decide what high crimes and misdemeanors means. There is no right of appeal.

    20. Matt
      August 13, 2008 at

      All the ponderous debate about what is or isn’t an impeachable offense is meaningless…they won’t impeach b/c there is not the political will to do it. Pelosi has repeatedly stated she won’t seek impeachment proceedings, the Republicans can stem/stall/and filibuster the move (thanks ironically to the actions of the group of 12 – kudos to those that know the reference), and the democrats KNOW that impeachment proceedings only serve to weaken the chance that Obama will win….so, as idealistically sincere as the wish is, it just won’t happen. I must say that I am continually dismayed at the general ambivalence of the populace….be glad, at least, that we live where the dialogue is happening…whichever side you reside on…

    21. Nome Agusta, Person
      August 13, 2008 at

      America has no testicles, we are too busy trying to be politically correct so as not to offend anyone.
      Eff that, offend and get the S#*^ done!.

      Oh, we will do plenty of whining about how this is wrong and that is wrong, and loud mouths like Michael Savage and druggie Rush will banter about who should do what. It’s all just a bunch of talk with no result.

      LAME!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    22. nitro
      August 13, 2008 at

      My point was that it must be based on a crime. Yes, the subjectivity comes in on what constitutes a high crime, or treason maybe (treason, bribery, high crimes or misdemeanors is the full list). The debate of Clinton’s impeachment was not whether lying during a deposition was a crime, it was, but whether it was up to a high one. My point is that it must be founded on a crime. And if there is clearly a link to the president committing a criminal act in this case, I don’t think that there should be any debate whether this constitutes a high crime. I’d call the actions treasonous given the consequences, although they surely thought they were serving the greater good.

      But, Pelosi’s past statement referred to the Plame affair, I believe, certainly not this current one. She was certainly not making a blanket statement that the President would never be impeached, just that she did not see any grounds up to the point even though there were calls to do so. And in fact, she was responding to Republican propaganda prior to the 2006 election that was claiming that if Democrats gained control they would impeach the pres.

      And, filibusters only apply to legislation. Even so, since conviction requires 2/3, a filibuster could not, and is not needed to stop a conviction since the numbers needed to convict could also override a filibuster, if it applied in these cases.

      But again, if there is a clear link that shows the president broke the law, this is absolutely an impeachable offense. And I’d be deeply saddened if it was ignored simply for political reasons. Of course, I’m also prepared to be deeply saddened.

    23. F Lee
      August 13, 2008 at

      You know, um, the former CIA Director and even the sources in the book have denied the “information” in the book. And, well, the democrats authorized the war.

      I know, Bushitler is such a moron, but he was able to pull one over on all of us, including the bone heads in congress. Stupid us.

      Even sloppy Joe Biden said we sould go into Iraq, not because of WMD, but because Saddam violated UN resolutions and the 1991 cease fire. But if you don’t know, you don’t know.

      Too many bike crashes have destroyed your one remaining brain cell. IDIOT!!!

    24. Michael Hernandez
      August 13, 2008 at

      back to the kiddie’s table for you, flee.


      “it’s my understanding from the blogosphere that the guy who said he was directed to write the fake letter has now backed away from that statement. But I don’t watch enough cable news to verify that meself”

      that’s not correct and i doubt you’ll get the correct story from cable news, shawn. but, the facts are available at Suskind’s website. You’re likely referring to Richer’s statement. If you spend a few minutes doing good research, you’ll understand that the statement issued by Richer did not deny what Suskind reports in the book. It’s exhaustive research from a pulitzer winner.


      “Nitro — querry, I don’t disagree with your analysis, but let’s say for sake of argument that GWB were impeached for jaywalking (or better yet, poaching some singletrack on his mtb… not that I’ve ever done that mind you). And let’s say the senate convicted him and removed him from office. Who’s to say Congress was wrong? I just don’t see the supreme court taking the case. It’s purely a legislative power and Congress gets to decide what high crimes and misdemeanors means. There is no right of appeal.”

      We’re not talking about jaywalking shawn. we’re not talking about fucking bikes. we’re talking about the fundamental role of government – the protection of the state, the people, with military and, to a lesser degree, geo-political force.

      This administration has used this force, this final solution – war – NOT to defend us, nor even our interests … but instead, we have unleashed death and destruction upon an INNOCENT people with an illegal act ~ namely, the deliberate spread of dis-information that attempted to prove Saddam Hussein and Iraq were an imminent threat to the US.

      this is immoral in such a fundamental way …

    25. F Lee
      August 13, 2008 at

      I know, you have sat at your computer doing “research” and have uncovered the truth. Damn you are brilliant!!!

      You should shut your pie hole and ride your bike. Piss ant.

      You are too stupid for words to describe.

      Get a real job and pay some taxes.

    26. Michael Hernandez
      August 13, 2008 at

      ok

    27. F Lee
      August 13, 2008 at

      Oh and I forgot….OBAMA WILL NOT WIN.

      Sorry.

      4 more years of Republican rule.

      Maybe we’ll invade San Fran and kill more civilans.

      Go to Canada with Alec Baldwin.

    28. August 13, 2008 at

      Sabine hit the nail on the head; dont know whats worse, our nations apathy or our leaders’ complete abuse of power.

      i’ll echo nome’s comment too; “LAME” = not sacking up and getting cr@p done.

      and Hernando, as for the fools that are hating on you for sharing your thoughts, taking a stand and encouraging us to take action, let em eff off.

    29. Angel
      August 13, 2008 at

      My guess is that the neocons knocking your wake up call here have not yet had the opportunity/common sense/cajones to actually read Suskind’s book, hear his interviews, or check out his website. Fact is, the bare bones of information on the Habbush fabrication was released way back when, but the story died a very quick and possibly unnatural death in the media (shock and awe, I know.) So Suskind – a Pulitzer-prize winning journalist, mind you – went ahunting. And look what he found. There is no mistake here. The orders to fabricate a checklist sending the US straight into an illegal and unnecessary war came straight from the white house. It is absolutely a criminal – and an impeachable – offense. This gun’s not only smoking, it’s burning like wildfire.
      The conversations are TAPED. Is Richer recanting now? Hell yes. The pressure coming down on that man must be truly unfathomable. But your point about Nixon is well-taken. If, and ONLY IF, we, the people, bring enough pressure to bear on those who seek (and claim) to represent us to force this issue into the sunlight, to force the subpoenas and the inquiries and the federal grand juries and the whole messy shit-heeling investigation into fruition, we can force Bush into a political morass eerily similar to the one Nixon faced, and he will be forced to step down, impeachment or no.
      But we MUST ACT, each of us. And we must ACT NOW.

      “…we must all fear evil men. But there is another kind of evil which we must fear most, and that is the indifference of good men.” BDS

    30. August 14, 2008 at

      Use Your Power To Force Impeach Hearings or lose it forever

      “As John Dean points out, Bush/Cheney have broken the same laws Nixon did, only Nixon’s actions did not cost the lives of over 4000 brave American men and women” (and over 30,000 GIs wounded, one Million Iraqis Killed).

      Bush and Cheney are the most impeachable US executives in American history. If the Incumbent House Democrats do not hold impeachment hearings soon it will be plain to all that they are Traitors to their Oath Of Office and to Our Constitution.

      The failure of the House Democrats to hold Bush and Cheney accountable for the WMD Lies is unforgiveable. The Democrats lied to us about Stopping The Iraq War in 2006 and then proceeded to fund it thru 2009. Even the Democratic Base will not support them in the November election.

      No matter what Bush/Cheney Crimes evidence comes out the Incumbent House Democrats will try to ignore it. It is time for some tough love for Incumbent House Democrats.

      How can we make Impeachment Hearings Happen?

      Arrayed against impeachment literally, is nearly the entire Democratic Party establishment as well as most Republican Congressmen. But the Democrats control Congress and can start Impeachment Hearings with a simple majority vote. They have the votes. We just have to make them do it.

      Most rank and file Democratic voters want Impeachment but are being ignored by the Democratic Congress.

      In addition, many of the so called progressive organizations are also in cahoots with the House Democrat and Pelosi (such as: MoveOn, ACLU & UFPJ ) and are against impeachment. It will take a very hard fight to over come this and some real courage on the part of Democratic voters.

      MoveOn could cause Impeachment Hearings all by itself but refuses.

      UFPJ once said it was for impeachment but refuses to take its 1,400 local activist groups to the street to support impeachment hearings. Is it lying?

      ACLU (don’t get me going) was the primary leader in causing impeachment hearings for President Nixon, but today refuses to do so. If the hundreds of violations of Our Constitution by Bush and Cheney are so much worse than Nixon… Why in Hell isn’t ACLU supporting it? What underhanded deal have they made with the Incumbent House Democrats and Pelosi?

      In Colorado we have actually been doing negative campaigning against all incumbent Democratic Congressmen who reject impeachment.

      We have a Congressman Udall who is running to be a Senator from Colorado. He supposedly has a liberal background but is moving right as fast as he can. He avoids all protesters who want to stop the Iraq War funding and who support impeachment. The difficult aspect is that the Colorado Democratic Party, the Denver Media, and most Colorado Progressive organizations are helping him avoid us, However, we have had contacts from strong Udall supporters and bloggers asking us to back off. We know we are having an effect on Udall’s Campaign.

      The race for the US Senate from Colorado is statistically “too close to call”, so we have a real chance to make a difference here. We believe that since the race is “so close” that we actually can stop Udall from winning and going to the Senate.

      The way we are doing this is by doing “Negative Protesting” at our weekly impeachment events, at all of Udalls public events. We only have to sway the vote of a very small percentage of voters to keep Udall out of the Senate. This is doable.

      Up until about two weeks ago, the honking at our weekly events had quadrupled since January. Then we used much “tougher” anti-Udall language on our signs and the honking doubled again. So much so that the Denver Police came and threatened arrest if we continued to use “honk to impeach” signs and also threatened us with citations for “disturbing the peace”. A strong indication that we are getting to the Democratic establishment and that the public is with us.

      Given that impeachment advocates have worked hard to lobby Congress to hold hearings and have done so for many years with no results, we think it is time for all impeachment advocates to try a different tactic, to get tough with Incumbent House Democrats.

      The House Democrats have ignored us for years. Unless we threaten to un-elect them with negative campaigning they will continue to ignore us. The only thing they care about is getting re-elected.

      Unless Angry Liberal Democrats, Independents, Republicans, Greens and the rest of you get off the couch and carry signs in front of all Incumbent House Democratic Congressmen’s offices with harsh language such as

      “UDALL is a Traitor to Our Constitution because he Refuses To impeach”…

      There Will Be No Impeachment and No Accountability.

      It is up to you.

      John H Kennedy, Denver CO,
      64 yr old cyclist,
      43 yr Democratic voter,
      Obama delegate to the Denver County Democratic Convention, organizer of the
      IMPEACH COLORADO COALITION http://ImpeachCO.com

      ..

    31. F Lee
      August 14, 2008 at

      You should be proud.

      Your cycling website has become a place where the hate America crowd can come out of their holes in San Fran and voice their idiotic opinions.

      Go ahead, get Nancy to start the impeachment process. Maybe Clinton, Kerry, Edwards Rockefeller etc can testify against him and how they were too tired to read the intelligence reports and instead just voted to send young men to their deaths.

      Go ahead. I dare her.

      You leftie liberals are as dumb as people say you are.

    32. Angel
      August 14, 2008 at

      FLee: Leftie liberals with idiotic opinions, are we? Well, here’s one from your own:

      http://www.amconmag.com/blog/2008/08/07/suskind-revisited/

      The American Conservative – the darling of neocon journalism – writes this on the topic of Suskind’s book:

      “An extremely reliable and well placed source in the intelligence community has informed me that Ron Suskind’s revelation that the White House ordered the preparation of a forged letter linking Saddam Hussein to al-Qaeda and also to attempts made to obtain yellowcake uranium is correct but that a number of details are wrong.”

      Ah, yes. Karen Hughes would be so proud. This has been the Bush administration’s media policy from the beginning: “Ya, we did it, so what?” And then the barrage of “details” that may or may not be correct, so let’s just bury this sordid little story, shall we?

      Oh – and Yes, the Dem’s are complicit, too. This is not about party politics. Left, Right, or Independent, we should ALL be outraged.

    33. nitro
      August 14, 2008 at

      Complicit is a bit strong, don’t you think, Angel? It’s one thing to say that they should have been more critical in giving the president blanket authority to go to war, but I don’t think they had a hand in fabricating any evidence. Certainly many representatives had other reasons for abdicating their responsibility, I mean supporting the war, which is probably why they were not critical of the evidence that the administration put forth. But that is not complicit.

      In order for the system to work, the process must be transparent. This is a core tenant of any democracy. Officials are free to call for any action they see fit, or to support anything for what ever reason they want, but when either they are trying to build public support, or support from another branch, everything must be above the board.

      When politics becomes sport, where winning is everything, everyone loses. And to continue with the sport metaphor, the president doped, so he should be stripped of his medal.

    34. August 14, 2008 at

      Nando, we agree. and believe me, I feel the pain, the horror… I hate the fact that so many innocents, in Angola, Guatemala, Afghanistan, (the list is VERY long) yes Iraq too, are dying horrible undeserved deaths because of US corporate, congressional and yes presidential deceitful decisions. of course they have violated the constitution and we agree that it is an impeachable offense.

      I’m just saying those boys are well padded, and sadly, untouchable. That’s the reality, just like the war, all our wars of late, are nothing about ideology and all about profit. From infrastructure destruction (and convenient rebuilding using our public money to pay 200% market costs to corporations the good ole boys are clandestinely deep into) to weapons manufacturing. The US Gov is making billions on it’s wars. Until we change our economic system from capitalism to something sustainable and cooperative (everyone making big bucks will resist this) – it will be status quo – yes, for both Dem’s and Pub’s.

      And no, I never said we should raise our finger (unless it’s the middle one!) to say our Gov rocks!

    35. August 14, 2008 at

      wow, poor Flea, i’d hate to be as angry as that guy, it’s almost like he drives around flipping off liberals and cyclist for being on his roads.

      the point being, everyone here, except you, is sticking to belief systems and not personal attacks. take your attacks to some other blog. leave hernando and his liberal cronies alone or else we’ll have to think not nice things about you. ;)

      i told yall i love it when olaf goes off! now you know why, 36 comments? awesome.

    36. F Lee
      August 14, 2008 at

      Poor Pedro. No personal attacks? You want to impeach MY President during wartime. That is personal enough for me. Douche.

      Anyway, for the liberals who can’t get this through their puny brains I’ll write very slowly. ok?

      I do agree that you can have a valid argument about the decision to invade Iraq. (I happen to think it was a good decision based upon all of the reasons, not just WMD). I understand there were many reasons NOT to go in. However, that view LOST within your own party.

      But once that decision was made, and I know you don’t want to admit it, but the Dems voted as a party to support the war, then you should support our efforts. If you undermine OUR efforts, the USA, then you are at best disloyal and at worst a traitor.

      Suck it!

    37. Michael Hernandez
      August 14, 2008 at

      that last comment was deleted FLee, there’ll be no personal threats around here.
      .
      and you’re allowed to post your other comments on this site because they, quite clearly, show your levels of intelligence, maturity, and empathy.

      so, feel free to continue commenting – they will be given the amount of attention they deserve – but, all comments such as your last will be deleted.

    38. nitro
      August 14, 2008 at

      Wait, is this a democracy you are talking about, Lee? I won’t ever abdicate my right to express my political views and demand of my officials to act responsibly. I don’t care if it is in time of war. And especially if support for the war was based on false (not inaccurate, but flat out fabricated) information.

      I get to chose whether I support those I vote for or even those who I did not. But hey, maybe we can do away with elections, since there is really no need to have that evaluative process. I mean heck, we already spoke, so there really is no reason to go through any more elections. Think of all the money and time we can save, too, if we did not have these silly campaigns. No, I’m really liking this, it’d make life so much easier if I did not have to waste my time with this whole responsible democratic citizen BS that was clearly just brainwashed into me by some liberal public bureaucrats, I mean teachers.

    39. F Lee
      August 14, 2008 at

      I do apologize for making what you have called a “personal threat.” I did not mean it as such. OK, maybe I did.

      Many have associated the term “neo-con”, however, with conservatives who are Jewish and some use the term as an anti-semetic slur.

      If that was the case, then those posters should apologize or be called out for it. As a Jew, I find it offensive. If we’re all for tolerance, then let’s cut the crap.

      “I don’t care if it is in time of war.” Very very sad.

      “And especially if support for the war was based on false (not inaccurate, but flat out fabricated) information.” Bush lied people died is so small. Just cause you think it is a fact doesn’t mean it is. Many many people have said that no one made anything up. But you just don’t want to listen to those opinions we don’t agree with.

      Again, many of us on the right understand that there is a valid argument to be made about whether to invade or not. BUT IT WAS MADE BY THOSE WE VOTED IN OFFICE. We don’t have a democracy. We have a constitutional republic. If you don’t like their decision, get rid of them. But don’t undermine a war effort while we are fighting it.

      Can we all just stick to bike racing and go to Kos or Huffington or wherever you loons go to express your political opinions. Common ground.

      Peace.

    40. Michael Hernandez
      August 14, 2008 at

      there, was that so hard?

    41. Michael Hernandez
      August 14, 2008 at

      oh yeah, you’re political views are chock solid full of shit … you know that right? deep down?

      anyway, we struggle on.

    42. F Lee
      August 14, 2008 at

      “Crock of shit?” Now that’s what I call political discourse.

      I remain the lone voice of sanity on this blog.

      Hernando, I love reading your wanderings about cycling. But you don’t know sheet about politics.

      Maybe we should stick to what we understand.

      It is called NorCal CYCLING News. Nothing political in that.

      Oh yeah, OBAMA sucks!!

    43. nitro
      August 14, 2008 at

      I will support a just war. However, I will not support an unjust war, which is what I feel about Iraq. And death is never small, especially if it results from unjust or illegal actions.

      So, we have a “he said, she said” over fabrication of evidence. Let’s investigate it, and let the rule of law govern the outcome. It is the rule of law I will always support. Our Constitution defines the rule of law governing war. The president asked Congress to abdicate its authority in this regard, and I disagreed with that because it violated a check on power that I think is fundamental to our system, that is the rule by one becomes rule by faction. Presidents have always had, and should always have, the ability to commit troops quickly and decisively in defense of our nation, but the declaration of war is something that must be decided by Congress.

      But there are also other checks in our system, that recognize abuse of power. One being elections, and in the extreme for the President, impeachment. If these claims prove true, this President committed an impeachable offense, regardless of the outcome of the war.

      But let me reiterate, I will defend our nation, I will defend our rule of law, but I will not blindly defend any elected official, regardless of whether we are in a time of war or peace, as this abdication of democratic responsibility (believe me, too, in that I support representative democracy, not often direct democracy) threatens the rule of law.

    44. nitro
      August 14, 2008 at

      Okay, that little interchange above is making me think that this is all staged between Hernando and Flee.

    45. CrazyWack
      August 14, 2008 at

      Something that we cannot overlook in the venomous debate is the feedom that Iraqi (Afghan, etc) people have because of the US/coalition intervention. Justified or not, immoral or not, there are millions upon millions of free people that are able to live without the fear of their outspoken opinion leading to their death or family members deaths. Women have rights today that they did not have under previous regimes.

      I would certainly not argue this as a sole justifiable reason for invading another country and deposing a government, however, something positive has come from this.

      It seems to me that the war in Iraq has been directed at military and insurgent targets only (though if somebody has proof that we have targeted civilians I would be interested in seeing that). And I have never heard of another war being waged by one country against another that involved dropping food and medical supplies to help the civilians. Shame on the insurgents for destroying those supplies to prevent the people from receiving them!

      The anti-Bush sentiment has obviously caught on to a wide group of people (he does not even have a 30% approval rating). I wonder though if history will judge him differently in 50 years. Perhaps he will be seen as the president who prevented terrorism from taking a foothold in the world. Or perhaps he will be seen as a terrorist himself. I guess we’ll have to wait and see. Things sure have turned on him in the last 8 years…….

    46. August 14, 2008 at

      i was threatened? OMG, scary!

      but this is classic

      “but the Dems voted as a party to support the war, then you should support our efforts. If you undermine OUR efforts, the USA, then you are at best disloyal and at worst a traitor. Suck it!”

      If my puny brain can grasp the logic then;

      1. I voted for a Dem. and 2. A Dem voted for the war –
      Therefore I must support the effort (of killing, murder, raping/pillaging, destruction, money grubbing, etc.) or else I am disloyal and/or a traitor (and not living in a free country where I can express my own thoughts and be critical of my government)

      Well shit, since you put it that way, I think I’ll just align myself with Borat’s speech before his national anthem at the rodeo!

      “My name is Borat. I come from Kazakhstan. Can I say first, we support your war of terror! May we show our support to our boys in Iraq! May US and A kill every single terrorist! May George Bush drink the blood of every single man, woman and child of Iraq! May you destroy their country so that of the next 1000 years not even a single lizard will survive in their deserts!” The crowd cheers wildly.

      Cheer on Flea, cheer on.

    47. August 14, 2008 at

      now I’m falling out of my chair… gotta love this genius jew~!

      Borat then sings his national anthem to the tune of the American national anthem, “Kazakhstan is the greatest country in the world/ All other countries are run by little girls/ Kazakhstan is number one, exporter of potassium/ All other Central Asian countries have inferior potassium/ Kazakhstan is the greatest nation in the world/ All other countries is the home of the gays!” The crowd boos and hisses. Borat has to leave.

      and is almost killed by flea’s cousin on the way out.

    48. Michael Hernandez
      August 14, 2008 at

      um, wasn’t a threat to you, pedro. sorry.

      and to threaten is always done out of fear. i would quote my frank herbert here, if allowed.
      .
      .
      Something that we cannot overlook in the venomous debate is the feedom that Iraqi (Afghan, etc) people have because of the US/coalition intervention. Justified or not, immoral or not, there are millions upon millions of free people that are able to live without the fear of their outspoken opinion leading to their death or family members deaths. Women have rights today that they did not have under previous regimes.

      I would certainly not argue this as a sole justifiable reason for invading another country and deposing a government, however, something positive has come from this.
      .
      to justify the Iraqi invasion with the line of reasoning that they are now ‘free’ is the most insidious, and above all heinous, of colonialist rationalizations.
      .
      …and we are doomed to repeat it.

    49. nitro
      August 14, 2008 at

      No, now just millions of Iraqis live in fear of being blown up.

      Afghanistan was just, but we have dropped the ball and their new found freedom is eroding because of it.

      But we did drop food on the East Germans. We did not invade. They are part of a democracy now, but not by the guns of others (yeah the arms race bankrupted the Soviet block, but we did not have to shoot the arms), but their own will. And it is the will of the people that makes democracies flourish.

      I think that Chaney said it best when he said that we could not impose our will on Iraq, as it would just devolve into anarchy if we came in an toppled Sadam’s regime. Damn smart guy.

    50. F Lee
      August 14, 2008 at

      “gotta love this genius jew~!”

      Is it that kind of attitude that liberals support?

      Is that what you support, Hernando? If it is, just say so and I’ll be gone.

      Is that just a personal attack or is this IDIOT a jew hater?

      I hope someone has the balls to call him what he really is.

      Oh yeah, Crazywhack has some valid points.

    51. Michael Hernandez
      August 14, 2008 at

      namecalling –
      you’re fine with calling people idiots, Flee.

      .
      sorry bud, you gotta get used to having it slung at you if you’re going to be lead swinger. and some of us don’t believe in religion. so, that you’re a jew means only to me that you are human.
      .
      a human
      afraid of losing something and scratching against an imaginary cage, or anything else that gets close enough.
      just to scratch.
      stop being afraid, i reckon, is where i’d start.
      m

    52. F Lee
      August 14, 2008 at

      Hernando,, now I understand that you are a DOUCHEBAG.

      Oh yeah, hope to see you soon.

    53. August 14, 2008 at

      I was talking about sasha bara cohen, who happens to be a comic genius, and jewish. and I feel like you gotta love him…for his message.

      just like all of the earth’s creatures deserve respect, regardless of their being born in Iraq, Israel, the U S AND A! (YAHOO!), their spot in the food web, and their religious preferences, cultural history or atheistic tendencies. respect for all.

      why is that so hard to support?

    54. CrazyWack
      August 14, 2008 at

      “Therefore I must support the effort (of killing, murder, raping/pillaging, destruction, money grubbing, etc.)”

      I agree that there has been killing and destruction, and money grubbing may be involved but suggesting that murder and raping/pillaging has occurred will require proof. While you may not agree with the reasons for the war and may hate those that started it I don’t believe that you can blanketly condemn the action of the soldiers. To indicate that as part of the military action we have corporately encouraged or condoned the rape of Iraqi people is irresponsible and downright mean-spirited. If you want to nail Bush (yikes, no pun intended) at least do it with the things that are real.

    55. nitro
      August 14, 2008 at

      I thought that pedro’s comment was coming from Borat.

      But I do think that when one refers to someone in the third person and qualifies it with what they are (cyclist, ethnic background X, nationality), it is a slur on qualifier. Sometimes that can be just good humor, sometimes a slur. In this case, oh please understand that this is not a slur but a pun that cannot be avoided, bad juju.

      However, his comment does not validate your arguments, Flee.

    56. August 14, 2008 at

      Crazy,

      I personally believe that the strife, stress, breading of hatred and the general horror of war (where ALL is fair…) tends to lend itself to heinous acts, such as rape. I also personally believe that is has happened in Iraq and many other war time places (the documentation is much better in places like Bosnia (“ethnic cleansing” – also occurring in Iraq for a long time) and Sudan, but no, I don’t have proof of it. Nor do I need it or want it.

      But typically, the term rape when used with “pillage” is the 4th dictionary.com definition, not the first, which is actually what I was referring to in my comment.

      an act of plunder, violent seizure, or abuse; despoliation; violation: the rape of the countryside.

    57. nitro
      August 14, 2008 at

      Oh boy, that does not even read right.

      I left out the word often, and , Pedro.

      But please, back to evaluating arguments.

    58. August 14, 2008 at

      nitro, you read your comments after posting them?

      me too!

    59. nitro
      August 14, 2008 at

      Pedro, my life right now is writing and re-reading what I write and other write over and over and over again. Why, so we can be clear to agencies and elected bodies just what the evidence says about a certain enacted or proposed policies. So, I write, re-read what I write, read what others comment to make sure they are reading it right, and re-write again. So, why the hell am I doing it on this post? Good question. Back to re-writing.

    60. CrazyWack
      August 14, 2008 at

      Pedro,

      I think we’re going to have to agree to disagree on this one. War is heinous, no doubt. But I do not believe that it will change a person from a Bible believing do-gooder to axe murderer. In fact, I have a gut feel that war (and some other life events) most often galvanizes people in their personalities and beliefs.

      You made a statement regarding the conduct of our countries troops without any proof or strong evidence of their conduct yet don’t even want any proof to validate your statements. If the troops were doing what you claim your outrage and opinion should be shared by all! You are making claims based on emotion (I understand it is a very emotional subject) and not fact. Really, it should be the other way around.

      Do you have any feeling on the food and medicine drops?

    61. Michael Hernandez
      August 14, 2008 at

      “You made a statement regarding the conduct of our countries troops without any proof or strong evidence of their conduct yet don’t even want any proof to validate your statements.”
      .
      .
      This post is about the impeachment of George Bush and Dick Cheney for ordering the CIA to fabricate evidence, unconscionably lying us into war. THESE men’s conduct is what is condemned, and this post points you towards proof to ‘validate that statement.’
      .
      Read the documents. Listen to the tapes when they are inevitably called to hearing/jury. Think.
      .
      and lastly, think of your town. Your town, the entirety of it – killed.
      Hundreds of thousands of Iraqi civilians (DOCUMENTED) have died since this illegal invasion. Think of them. They were innocent. They did not deserve to die, sometimes horribly, by any hand – american or arab.

    62. CrazyWack
      August 14, 2008 at

      Well, I can certainly agree that if proof comes to light (and not simply one guy saying that another guy said) that the president lied to get us into war then he should be held responsible. Forget impeachment – imprisonment is in order. I realize the book you mentioned started this thread, however, I have not read or seen any direct proof of this (admittely I have not kept up the issue for a number of reasons). Other than hear-say is there any proof that you can point me to so that I can “think”? It is a serious question – not a poke at you.

      In any war there are people that die. It sucks. For all of us but mostly for their families. Only a hardened heart would argue otherwise. I would point out that (as I mentioned earlier) civilians are not targeted, terrorists and strategic military strongholds are what the military goes after.

      Also, my comment about looking for the good is not a statement of allegiance to the war, but rather a way to find a string of hope during a dark hour. I choose to celebrate the freedom of one person while I mourn the passing of another. The two can coexist. And even simultaneous to the investigation of an administration.

      The problem in convicting this administration is that arguements for or against the validity of the war fall exactly down party lines. Left says evil, right says good. The two do not coexist so how are we to know the truth. Hence my question – can you point me to objective evidence or proof of the specific lie alleged here so I can evaluate it?

    63. Michael Hernandez
      August 14, 2008 at

      “The problem in convicting this administration is that arguements for or against the validity of the war fall exactly down party lines. Left says evil, right says good. The two do not coexist so how are we to know the truth. Hence my question – can you point me to objective evidence or proof of the specific lie alleged here so I can evaluate it?”
      .
      you are so very, very wrong. this has nothing to do with party affiliation. Please understand – There was no threat from Saddam Hussein or Iraq to America, or American interests.
      The arguments for or against the war have NOTHING to do with political party. We are talking about the most fundamental role of government (protection of the state by use of force) – and that it was used illegally, immorally, and unethically.
      .
      As for your request for proof, again, i suggest you read Suskind’s book(s). I suggest you read Scott Ritter’s work (any of it regarding Iraq, and especially Iran). I suggest you read all of Dennis Kucinich’s Impeachment Articles.
      .
      .
      “I choose to celebrate the freedom of one person while I mourn the passing of another. The two can coexist.”
      .
      When referring to the needless slaughter of thousands of Iraqis?
      how insulting. how inhuman. how can you be so blind to those people’s suffering? This was a STABLE country before our invasion, even if ruled by a dictator (shall we discuss the totalitarian regime we support in Saudi Arabia?).
      that we have created this havoc, and yet do not acknowledge openly and publicly that it was an illegal, immoral action … i weep for us.

    64. TimB
      August 14, 2008 at

      Wow – I’d hoped we’d be back to bike racing commentary, silly me.
      .
      Yes, I understand that Impeachment is a process, but for Impeachment to be brought against a sitting President, a charge of “High Crimes and Misdemeanors” must be brought, and that is a serious allegation and one that is not defined in our Constitution. So despite being a conservative, I looked at the Impeachment of Clinton as being way overblown despite the fact that he did commit perjury in that deposition.
      .
      Despite his other posts, I do agree with FLee on this point: “I do agree that you can have a valid argument about the decision to invade Iraq. (I happen to think it was a good decision based upon all of the reasons, not just WMD). I understand there were many reasons NOT to go in. However, that view LOST within [the Democratic] party.”

      Dude’s got a point. WMD was one reason for Operation Iraqi Freedom (our invasion), not the only reason. Also, Saddam played a fools game of working extremely hard to convince the West and his neighbors that he still had weaponized WMDs (ones that could be used quickly) and an ongoing development program. He did it so well that the weapons inspectors couldn’t conclusively say that no such weapons or programs existed, even while they couldn’t find any proof of them.

      I’m no fan of Bush and have been heartened when his extra-legal actions like endless detaining of non-POWs at Gitmo got overturned by the Supreme Court. It is a sign to me that our checks and balances are still working, albeit slowly. “Signing Statements” are likely to fail in the courts if that slight-of-hand is ever attempted to be used for real (not Bush just crossing his fingers and claiming he is ignoring the law). Even the hard liners turned away from borderline abusive techniques like waterboarding – which despite all the hype was allegedly only used a few times on senior Al Queda folks and then abandoned due to misgivings about using it as well as its questionable utility (people fearing drowning will say anything at all for it to stop).

      So no, I don’t feel that we are in a Constitutional crisis, far from it. Yes this Administration has tried to push the envelope further than normal, but every administration regardless of party does push things. But it has also gotten smacked down for its excesses, albeit slowly. While the American people have elected Bush twice (don’t ask me why, I voted against him both times), we have also chosen to force him to work with closely divided houses of Congress. Even when the Republicans held a slight lead in the House, Bush was forced by the narrow Senate margins to work with the other party. Since 2006 the Dems have controlled both Houses (the Senate only with the help of “Independent” Joe Liebermann), yet their impact has been modest.

      So I stand by my earlier statement – in a few months Bush will be out of office. Hopefully then we can get beyond all of the shrill end-of-civilization-as-we-know it rhetoric and get back to calling each other fascists and commies like the old days. Personally I’m pretty sanguine whether Obama or McCain win the election as I feel comfortable that both of them are going to dismantle or repudiate a lot of the Bush Administrations excesses.

      Oh, and for all of those who care so strongly, please make sure that you are registered to vote this Fall and encourage your friends, family and coworkers to register. I don’t care if you agree with me or not, just that you vote – nothing is worse than listening to whining after the fact from someone who didn’t bother to participate. They get what they asked for.

    65. August 14, 2008 at

      Bible (Koran, Hebrew Scriptures, etc. insert preferred religious doctrine) believing do-gooders murder every day!

      And making statements is not a crime. I said what I “believe”…

      Michael is right in that the public was lied to by Bush and Co. and that is an impeachable offense that cost thousands, tens of thousands of innocent lives. Rest assured, however, it’s not the first time or the last this has happened. Lie, cheat, steal to make profit while others suffer. That’s a big part of the human experience.

      There is nothing new under the sun.

    66. nitro
      August 14, 2008 at

      I never thought that the basis for Clinton’s impeachment stemmed from conservative values, just partisan politics.

      But something that has been let go is what the vote in Congress was that gave Bush carte blanch to go wacko on Iraq. It was not a declaration of war; it was an authorization for the use of force. The reality is that Iraq truly posed an imminent, Bush, or any president, could immediately commit troops. Yet, this was an operation of such huge scale, it required build up. But remember, many wanted this voice to send a credible threat message to Saddam to comply with UN resolutions. And, they also made their decisions, in part, based off of intelligence that put together by the administration (I’m differentiating the administration from the administrative agencies that collected the intelligence). My guess is that most (I suspect some would have still gone forward) with the vote to authorize the use of force if they knew that the intelligence was fabricated (assuming that it is).

      But, this is not something you just let drift away (assuming it is true). This would be an egregious crime that has had consequences greater than than the sum of crimes that led to the imprisonment of our whole prison population (equating the costs of the crime as number of lives lost and property damaged). I do think that it would be a Constitutional crisis if this is ignored, in that it would be accepting that the President can assert any authority as he/she sees fit (again, all on the assumption that there is a clear link to the president). That seriously conflicts with the principles of our Constitution.

    67. nitro
      August 14, 2008 at

      I left out the word “if”, and oh my, it changed the whole meaning of a key sentence.

      Back to what I get paid to re-write.

    68. Michael Hernandez
      August 14, 2008 at

      Dude’s got a point. WMD was one reason for Operation Iraqi Freedom (our invasion), not the only reason. Also, Saddam played a fools game of working extremely hard to convince the West and his neighbors that he still had weaponized WMDs (ones that could be used quickly) and an ongoing development program. He did it so well that the weapons inspectors couldn’t conclusively say that no such weapons or programs existed, even while they couldn’t find any proof of them.”
      .
      AGAIN, i ask you to do research on this. Your statements are false. WMD was ENTIRELY our rationale for invading Iraq. Tim, how else could UN Resolution 1441 have been used by the Administration?
      .
      Tim, you’re misinformed in such a fundamental way.
      Moreover, Saddam Hussein was in dread fear of IRAN believing him to be free of WMD. George Bush and Dick Cheney were BRIEFED ON THIS prior to the invasion. This is public record.
      .
      .
      “So no, I don’t feel that we are in a Constitutional crisis, far from it. Yes this Administration has tried to push the envelope further than normal, but every administration regardless of party does push things.”
      .
      permanent imprisonment (or threat, there of) of innocents, torture, illegal invasion …
      you don’t see these as elements of an executive abusing powers to a degree of crisis?
      .
      you must see the willful ignorance of such a position?
      .
      .
      “Hopefully then we can get beyond all of the shrill end-of-civilization-as-we-know it rhetoric and get back to calling each other fascists and commies like the old days.”
      .
      that you shrug off such death and suffering … i am not shocked. it is the habits many fall into … insulation.

    69. F Lee
      August 14, 2008 at

      It is funny how no one else understands anything about what happened leading up to the Iraq invasion. Just Hernando.

      here is the congressional authorization: http://tinyurl.com/1s2e

      Read it and see that it was more than just WMD.

      You are the uninformed one. Unless you count your code pink bible.

    70. F Lee
      August 14, 2008 at

      Only by your definition is it a just war.

      Well many of us think it is a just war and so we fight it despite your childish rantings.

      If you were in Bush’s shoes, presented with the CIA’s reports that Saddam was a threat, he would have been vilified if he didn’t take action to prevent the next attack on American soil.

    71. nitro
      August 14, 2008 at

      Oh my, of course there were other things in the resolution. Some of them relate to the fabricated information. But the overriding theme is WMD, over and over again. Toss some pepper on the salad, and it is still salad (my mind is wondering).

    72. August 14, 2008 at

      I find this all to be very stressful, but I guess you “could” be talking about religion…

      The congressional authorization can be interpreted a few different ways. If you remove the parts that turned out to be untrue, you’re left with evidence from 1990.

      Complete sidenote: all the “liberal spam” I get in my Inbox comes in well organized e-mails from MoveOn.org. I don’t agree with all of it, but nonetheless, it is presented well, and I don’t live with the fear that I will be insulted if I don’t agree.

      The “conservative spam” comes in the form of chain mails written with very poor grammar and spelling, and can be easily refuted on snopes.com, and tend to question one’s allegiance to the flag if he or she might happen to think differently than President Bush.

      That’s one observation.

      And then another one that I have is that even when liberals agree, they still argue with one another, because they don’t agree in the “correct” way. Conservatives agree with each other even when they have no idea what they’re agreeing on.

      These are things that, in general, perplex me about human relations, and it’s why I avoid topics of politics, and religion, because I don’t know what the underlying root of it all the stress is. Maybe it’s this assumption that we all think the same way at the core, so if you think that differently than I do, you must be some alien force and should be eradicated, I really don’t know, but I just wish that humans could get along, and I mean that on a global scale. I missed all the hippy days when for at least a few years, people actually believed it could happen. They were also high and have liver problems and other health concerns today. So I don’t know what the answer is.

    73. F Lee
      August 14, 2008 at

      Ahead of the vote, Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle announced Thursday morning he would support Bush on Iraq, saying it is important for the country “to speak with one voice at this critical moment.”

      Daschle, D-South Dakota, said the threat of Iraq’s weapons programs “may not be imminent. But it is real. It is growing. And it cannot be ignored.” However, he urged Bush to move “in a way that avoids making a dangerous situation even worse.”

    74. nitro
      August 14, 2008 at

      And your point is, F Lee?

      Why did he think it was imminent: bad, if not fabricated, intelligence.

      What might he mean by not making matters worse? Sounds like he wanted the president to exercise caution in exercising the authority that Congress granted him.

      Subtleties matter.

      The one voice was to comply or less. We know that while Saddam was mouthing off, he had complied by destroying the weapons, but not complying by not allowing us to see. He was playing a game with Iran, and the President knew it.

    75. nitro
      August 14, 2008 at

      or else.

    76. F Lee
      August 14, 2008 at

      The point is that Dashole had access to ALL of the raw date from the CIA, not just the reports that were presented.

      OK, who fabricated the evidence? The CIA? Tennet was a Clinton appointee. Hill voted for the war, perhaps her husband should have told her that the Bushies were bad and made it all up. The White House? The media? Who?

      And what did they fabricate? The Clinton administration thought he had WMD as did the rest of the world.

      And again, despite the fact that you continue to insist that it was the “overriding theme”, it wasn’t the only reason to go into Iraq.

      A book by Suskind whereby everybody denies what he prints isn’t evidence. It is gossip. You can choose to believe what you want.

      Perhaps the information was just plain wrong, not made up, but wrong. Wouldn’t be the first time the CIA has missed something. See Silberman-Robb Commission.

    77. F Lee
      August 14, 2008 at

      “Saddam Hussein certainly has chemical and biological weapons. There’s no question about that.”

      Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi (Democrat, California)
      During an interview on “Meet The Press”
      November 17, 2002

      Did Nancy fabricate the evidence or was she just duped by Bushitler? If she was duped, should she be the speaker of the house? Is she just plain dumber than a hick from Crawford, TX?

    78. F Lee
      August 14, 2008 at

      There were other reasons, like the violation of the 1991 cease fire agreement:

      “We stopped the fighting [in 1991] on an agreement that Iraq would take steps to assure the world that it would not engage in further aggression and that it would destroy its weapons of mass destruction. It has refused to take those steps. That refusal constitutes a breach of the armistice which renders it void and justifies resumption of the armed conflict.”

      Senator Harry Reid (Democrat, Nevada)
      Addressing the US Senate
      October 9, 2002
      Congressional Record, p. S10145

      Should Harry Reid be impeached? Nancy Pelosi?

      They all believed it and they had ACCESS to the same information from the CIA.

    79. F Lee
      August 14, 2008 at

      BOB SCHIEFFER, Chief Washington Correspondent: And with us now is the Democratic presidential candidate Dick Gephardt. Congressman, you supported taking military action in Iraq. Do you think now it was the right thing to do?

      REP. RICHARD GEPHARDT, D-MO, Democratic Presidential Candidate: I do. I base my determination on what I heard from the CIA. I went out there a couple of times and talked to everybody, including George Tenet. I talked to people in the Clinton administration.

      SCHIEFFER: Well, let me just ask you, do you feel, Congressman, that you were misled?

      GEPHARDT: I don’t. I asked very direct questions of the top people in the CIA and people who’d served in the Clinton administration. And they said they believed that Saddam Hussein either had weapons or had the components of weapons or the ability to quickly make weapons of mass destruction. What we’re worried about is an A-bomb in a Ryder truck in New York, in Washington and St. Louis. It cannot happen. We have to prevent it from happening. And it was on that basis that I voted to do this.

      Congressman Richard Gephardt (Democrat, Montana)
      Interviewed on CBS News “Face the Nation”
      November 2, 2003

      I guess we can’t impeach Dick because he is retired.

    80. nitro
      August 14, 2008 at

      Misinterpretation of evidence is not an impeachable offense.

      Fabrication of evidence is.

      Figure out the difference between the two.

      And might fabrication of evidence be illegal, because our elected officials make decisions that can have grave consequences off of the evidence. The president should not be trying to dupe Congress. And being duped does not equate to being dumb. They trusted the evidence, because it is illegal to fabricate it, so why the hell would someone automatically assume that it is.

      If you show me the Pelosi, Reid, or even my beloved dog, fabricated evidence that led us to war, then I’d say impeach/imprison them all.

    81. nitro
      August 14, 2008 at

      Government lesson.

      Agencies are under the direct guidance of the president. Appointees are the ones who communicate with Congress, even though strictly speaking all agencies are under control of Congress. The President administrates these agencies, giving them discretion afforded by legislation.

      So, yes, Congress asked questions. They cannot do their own collection of evidence most of the time, if ever. They must trust the agencies or the system does not work. This is why this is an impeachable offense. If Congress had to investigate every report or statements made in hearings coming from agencies, they could not do there job.

      So, yeah, they were duped. The offense is on the dupers, though, not the duped.

    82. F Lee
      August 14, 2008 at

      Please answer my question:

      What did they fabricate?

      And who fabricated it?

      Gebhart said he went down and spoke to the CIA and former Clinton administration members. He didn’t just listen to the Bush administration.

      Did the CIA make shit up?

      According to the Siberman-Robb Commission it was just wrong. It did not find even a single case of improper pressure on intelligence analysts to change or “cook” intelligence in order to support political positions.

      I know this challenges your myopic view of the world, but perhaps, just perhaps, the intelligence was just wrong, not fabricated.

    83. F Lee
      August 14, 2008 at

      “They cannot do their own collection of evidence most of the time, if ever. They must trust the agencies or the system does not work.”

      I know you are kidding, right?

      Our government wastes more and more time and money investigating and collecting facts. Congress will investigate anything, including steroids, UFOs, the patriots spygate, and the bad oil and gas companies. Anything for the dopey politicians to get on tv and fix their hair. See Breck girl.

    84. August 14, 2008 at

      don’t bunnies have soft fur?

    85. nitro
      August 14, 2008 at

      Yes, intelligence was wrong. And knowing how evidence is evaluated, I know that one’s views can influence how evidence is presented and interpreted. That is not the issue here. The issue is whether evidence was purposefully manipulated, which is what this thread is about: A letter that was allegedly fabricated that both said Saddam had WMD and was aiding and abetting Al Queda operatives. If this is the case, yes, CIA made shit up. That’s against the law, and should be prosecuted. If they were directed by the administration, then those in the administration should be held responsible, too.

      I really wouldn’t be happy to know that these allegations are true. But I want justice if it is.

    86. nitro
      August 14, 2008 at

      Congress does not do the investigations. They have agencies do it, or authorize researchers to do so. I know, I do it. They have to trust what is presented to them. But hey, let’s send our representatives to do the research.

    87. Anonymous
      August 14, 2008 at

      I respect the opinions and debate from you people on this subject, but I have to ask – Besides your comments, what are you ACTUALLY doing to bring about change? (Blogging and reading books not included.)

      The other thing I have to ask is, how many veterans or currently enlisted men and/or women have you talked to that has been involved with this war?

    88. nitro
      August 14, 2008 at

      I vote. And this discourse on this thread, or anywhere else I can get, it is central to making my vote matter. Discourse informs me, and maybe others.

      And mind you, not to devalue the perspective of those wearing our nation’s uniforms, I don’t need to hear from them to know my values. That said, I have.

    89. F Lee
      August 14, 2008 at

      Anonymous, your question is a good one.

      Personally, whether we like it or not, I believe that we are in a war with the jihadis. You may disagree, but I can point you to various acts and words, including 9/11, that make me feel that way. In fact, I have several friends who died on 9/11.

      But, I sat around on my ass, like most, doing nothing, and letting the world pass me by.

      Then, about 2 years ago, I decided to get involved.

      Although I share a world view that is different from those who read this blog, I am deeply involved with conservative politics and those who want to fight the war against the jihadis. At this time, I would rather not specifically say what those causes are.

      And yes, I have spoke with many military personnel, both in favor of and opposed to the war. Despite their personal opinions about many things (media, politicians, public opinion, etc), they do understand that they have an objective to achieve that is presented by the commander in chief, validly elected by the American public.

      To support them in my own way, in the context of my career, I handle many of their cases pro bono. They are very good men and women, doing a very difficult job.

    90. TimB
      August 14, 2008 at

      Mike – I’m hate to argue with you on your blog about politics, but we disagree, and I think in part we disagree based on different points of view, but also in part because of different information we’re basing our opinions on. I’ve paid attention to the issues for our involvement in Iraq since the first Gulf War, watched Powell’s speech to the U.N. Security Council while it took place (NYC’s cable news played it live), have read the Geneva Conventions and their provisions for legal combatants and civilians, and the holes into which “unlawful combatants” fall, followed the reports on WMDs in Iraq, Abu Ghraib, Gitmo, Water-boarding, Saddam’s torture system (not prison system, torture system), and the fallout from our occupation there. So no, I’m not misinformed nor am I being willfully ignorant.

      One quick example – Security Council resolution 1441, which you cite. This resolution chides Iraq for not complying with the WMD reporting requirements of previous U.N. resolutions and the Gulf War I armistice agreement: ” Iraq has not provided an accurate, full, final, and complete disclosure, as required by resolution 687 (1991), of all aspects of its programmes to develop weapons of mass destruction…” The resolution is not about Iraq necessarily HAVING WMDs, it is about Iraq’s failure to comply with the U.N. resolutions requiring it to disclose all information about the WMD programs it WAS developing or HAD developed in the past, any WMDs it currently had, etc. Through the start of the invasion, Saddam never complied with this resolution or any of its predecessors fully and completely. No question about that.

      I don’t doubt Saddam feared what Iran might do if he had no WMDs, and feared what the Saudis might do too, his own people, heck, the man had an enemies list as long as his years in power. The issue isn’t what Saddam feared, it is his failure to comply with the U.N. resolutions, violations of the no-fly zone, repression of his civilian population and so on.

      “permanent imprisonment (or threat, there of) of innocents, torture, illegal invasion …
      you don’t see these as elements of an executive abusing powers to a degree of crisis?”

      “Permanent imprisonment” is not a crime, heck I support the death penalty in heinous cases, so life is us being decent. And the Supreme Court has forced Bush to at least have their charges reviewed in a form of trial (itself subject to later judicial review). U.S. Citizens are being tried in our regular courts. And finally, no “innocents” are being held – mistakes were made based on bad or biased information, and those guys have been shipped home. Welcome to operating in tribalized cultures, we don’t always understand how things are done there or who’s ox is being gored by whom.

      “Torture” – what torture? Waterboarding is unpleasant and scary, but so’s getting locked up in a jail cell. And even that was only used 3-4 times before being discarded, and then only on major folks like Kalid Sheikh Mohammed. It’s not a shining light in our effort against Global Terrorism, and the fact that it was voluntarily renounced says as much as the fact that it was used at all.

      “illegal invasion” – what illegal invasion? The U.S. acted under Article IV of the U.N. Charter allowing it to act based on Iraq’s repeated violations of U.N. resolutions, including #1441. Congress authorized the invasion of Iraq, though they evaded actually declaring war, which they should have done if troops were going into harm’s way.

      So no Mike, I don’t see Bush’s excesses as a crisis. The Executive abuse of power that in my mind was a crisis was during the Watergate scandal as a sitting President subverted the political process to self-select his opponent (Nixon chose McGovern in 1968 as a patsy he could easily beat). Bush has also had several of his more extreme actions curtailed by the courts, by Congress and by actors in his own party and administration. I’m not now nor have I ever been a fan of his, but he doesn’t rise to the level of Harding for corruption, Nixon for subversion, or Carter for foreign policy incompetence (and I love Jimmy for his role as an ex-President). As I said way at the top, I’ll sing gleefully when anybody else gets sworn in next January. Till then I’m crossing my fingers.

      Now get back on a bike Mike and ride off some of this anger and frustration. I’m going to try and do the same (still a stationary bike, but it’s at least on the porch so that I can sweat it out!). See you at the races!

    91. TimB
      August 14, 2008 at

      Last post should have started with “I hate to argue” – bah, missed that while editing.

      I are sprechen ze English.

    92. Anonymous
      August 14, 2008 at

      I’m the same Anom as before.

      Now voting is a privlage, not a right, and also I feel a duty if allowed. But voting is a waiting game and not a proactive solution. Not to knock you because voting is a start and only a start and I feel you are really trying to make a difference.

      But we as Americans are in a critical time in our history on all fronts, not just our president and the war. Some would say we are in a crisis.

      So what can we do to REALLY make a difference?

      On this forum we have a few radical lefts and radical rights, but I feel that America is 90-95% in the middle. Anything politically that swings too far one way or the other will just escalate the counter swing towards the opposite direction.

      Maybe I should ask, what can we do to REALLY make a difference and ALSO find a middle ground or some type of equilibrium?

      Afterall, that’s what we need – equilibrium.

      If our “elected” officials can’t do it, we have to. That is how our country was designed in the first place. It’s about “we the people” controlling the government, not the government controlling the people.

      Are we too scarred? Lazy? Ignorrant? Complacent? Stupid? Jaded? Greedy????

      Is it how we were educated? Pop culture?

      Ask not what your country can do for you…………

      Cliche or reality?

      Denke.

    93. nitro
      August 14, 2008 at

      Are we talking about making a difference through involvement in the political system, our in a broader sense?

      I’ve made educational and career choices based on my desire to serve pulic interest. However, I do not want, or fell the need to get directly involved in the political process. Thisnos not apathy, but based on a belief that there are other means to contribute.

      And I also believe in representive democracy, which is about a balance between those who govern and the governed. The governed have a responsibility to exercise the fundamental right of voting. This requires knowing enough about those who govern or those who wish to so that when you vote your vote is consisten with your values. This is no small feat.

      But, to get back on track to this post, I must know that my representives, whether I voted for them or not, are honest in how they are advocating their position. If not, my time and effort I expend to be a responsible system is wasted.

    94. NapoleonD
      August 15, 2008 at

      Do chickens have large talons?

    95. anonymous
      August 15, 2008 at

      yes, bunnies certainly are soft! pet one today.

    96. Michael Hernandez
      August 15, 2008 at

      i don’t know, but i just drew the sweetest unicorgi.

      i did the unicorn head ok, but the corgi body took like 3 hours. it’s probably the best drawing i’ve ever done.

    97. TimB
      August 15, 2008 at

      Personally, I’d advocate involvement in whatever way you’re comfortable with. From posting advocacy articles, as Mike has done here, to being active in primary and general election campaigns, to being active on political issues from local ones like the proposed Alameda County Bike Race ordinance to broader state and national issues, even being active in working on fundraising and awareness campaigns for charities or advocacy groups.

      Yes it seems like the more vocal posts you see, whether here or elsewhere, are on one of the extremes. And yeah, most people float somewhere in the middle of the American political spectrum. Both sides want those voters in the middle to lean their way, but that depends on the issue, the candidate and so forth. Some people have commented to me that they vote one way for President and the opposite for Congress or state offices in order to keep things balanced out. One of the reasons that Congress has gone along with Bush is the narrow splits between the parties in both bodies, and that has also forced him to compromise on some points.

      In a way I am more worried about low voter turnouts (around 50% of eligible voters in general elections to as low as 33% in non-Presidential Congressional elections and even lower for state and local elections that are held on different schedules the the bi-annual Congressional ones.

    98. hAndy
      August 15, 2008 at

      I am just happy that Bush is actually trying to pick a fight with a country that actually has everything he is going to want to lie about having….

      Moscow here we come….

      He got bored with fixing his fathers war, he wants to go and fix his great grandpappy’s war…

      bush, jews, jihadis, pelosi, gays, liberals, conservatives, wmd’s, war….

      what a read, but I am still glad I have comcast digital voice so that when I talk to my local recruiter trying to get me to reactivate and help my jarhead cousins with some bandages in the sand, the conversation sounds a lot different now and he understands that I am more into family guy every evening than I am into senseless killing….

      sorry roger, you tiger now…..

    99. Matt
      August 16, 2008 at

      TimB – are you serious? You’ve ‘read’ lots and therefore know that waterboarding isn’t torture? Have you tried it? Bet you’d feel differently…

      but you are a scholar next to FLee…because it was voted for we should support the war? I’ll support the troops across time and situation…they are doing a job..but I will not support the innumerable INANE decisions that made the prosecution of this war a terrible farce. I will not support an administration that thinks it has the divine right to do as it pleases..damn the constitution, the constituency, or the law – that you do/will is perhaps the most scary commentary i’ve read on this cycling blog. Hubris. You throw the term liberal around as an epithet yet dare to speak of the rightousness of our democracy – even while you deepen the divisions that have gotten us to this place – why can’t people on either side pull their heads out of the sand and BE OBJECECTIVE and a little bit self-reflective in their beliefs once in awhile….

      damn I hate ignorance – on both sides….

    100. Matt
      August 16, 2008 at

      FLee – heard of yellowcake? that’s just the most obvious…Seriously….you really need to see the frontline on cheney’s war…it was fascinating and sincerely disturbing

    101. Matt
      August 16, 2008 at

      Yea, it’s late…and i should be sleeping….but when i read through the varied rants of our fav local conservative it just keeps getting better….so much anger young man – you’ll toss anyone who doesn’t see things your way under the bus in a heartbeat – now that’s American! You may be intelligent, but you are no learned man, just a sad, angry little mind let loose on the internet…

      have a nice weekend!

    102. nitro
      August 17, 2008 at

      TimB, you need to add at 6 to 10% precent to what is stated as voter turnout as the denominator, those over 18, includes about 10 million non-eligible adults (largely non-citizens). Basically, anything that is called voting age population instead of voting eligible population is deflated.

      But, it really does not matter if all those who vote are informed and consistent.

      And Matt, I’m guessing that Flee would see that Frontline as more liberal media propaganda. I mean heck, the chair of the Corporation for Public Broadcasting paid some hack 14k to to a whack content analysis of Now and other public broadcasts shows to show that Senator Chuck Hagel was part of the PBS liberal agenda machine. Why, cuz he was critical of the administration of the war. So, being critical of Bush’s administration of the Iraq war makes you a liberal, apparently.

      But again, it is not the low voter turnout that is the problem, it is the uniformed turnout. ike, you know, maybe blindly voting for or against someone simply because of a label, regardless of who is applying the label. Simpleton shortcuts in the era or ESPN politics.

      And again, it is about being informed so you can be consistent with your values, what ever they may be.

    103. TimB
      August 18, 2008 at

      Nitro – we can quibble over the percentage and how it is reached. But at least we can agree that turnout is low?. 43-60% voting (adding 10% to my numbers above) is still not a lot, and when the results are nearly 50-50 (Gore lost with 48.4% to Bush’s 47.9%) a low turnout means that only 30% or so actually voted FOR the winner. I don’t know about you, but I find when I’m talking to someone outside of a politically focused forum (like this article on Mike’s website/blog) that non-voting is very, very common.

      Matt – I also hate ignorance. And one way of avoiding responding to facts and arguments presented is to attack the messenger. Have you read the recent Christopher Hitchens piece in “Vanity Fair” where he undergoes the procedure? His take is very opposed to it, but what he talks about is fairly similar to the experience of friends who’ve gone through SEAR training. It is nasty, unpleasant and scary, as I said before. But torture? I’m told that as soon as it ends the people who’ve gone through it realize how they’d overreacted.

      I’m happier that we choose not to use such coercive measures, but I’m not throwing a hissy fit because we did. Three times. To vicious evil thugs who deserved 5 minutes in a room with a bunch of New Yorkers with baseball bats. But we’re better than that, aren’t we?

    104. nitro
      August 18, 2008 at

      Well, no, it is not the quibble over the statistics, as the statistics that are reported are wrong. Simply put, when you include non-eligible voters in the denominator, you deflate the figure. What is produced is either lazy statistics, or an attempt o make some statement.

      The quibble, though, is whether 60% in a presidential election, is poor. But, to put things in perspective, the biggest decline in voting participation really was not a decline, but instead the 26th amendment which enfranchised the demographic that does not vote. The biggest swing in turnout over the years has been when this demographic gets off it’s booty and votes.

      But, when you disaggregate North and South, you would also see a huge increase in turnout for the South starting in the 50s. Prior to the civil rights movement, turnout in the South was around 20%. It is now approaching turnout in other regions. So, again, the stats that are often shown to support a claim that participation is on the decline are crude at best, and certainly misleading.

      Now, is it still low? This really is a normative question. Are there barriers to voting? There are still some, and turnout would increase if we reduced some of the costs of voting (for instance only allowing voting on one weekday). But, it still comes down to whether those who vote are aware of what they are voting for. But I tell you, what is really the problem is the low voter turnout in primaries (which they should simply do away with, as ironically it would lead to more representative representatives). When you have low voter turnout in primaries, you get representatives that are not the median voter in a general election.

      And, you have a selection bias issue when discussing politics on a political site. Of course all who would participate on a political blog would vote. And even with participation of non-political sites, you’d probably get just above the average in political participation (the fact that they have internet access and are participating means that they have attributes that indicate voting, some wealth and likely education). But, I’d much rather discuss politics on a non-political site, as political sites have another bias issue: they draw in like-minded people. When you gather a group of like-mined people, in regards to political issues, you don’t get discourse, but instead factions rising.

      Democracy is a bitch. There is no easy answer to what is the right level of participation, or the right way to implement a set of values, but by all means it requires free and open discourse.

    105. Matt
      August 19, 2008 at

      TimB – frankly I am a bit torn….I agree that coercive interrogation tactics certainly seem merited for some cases..but that’s more of a vengence thing than a viability one. Of course the real point is that the US subscribes to the Geneva convention in theory only (specifically the GC asserts “Every person in enemy hands must be either a prisoner of war and, as such, be covered by the Third Convention; or a civilian covered by the Fourth Convention”, both of which disallow torture)…the real issues, to me, are that the Administration went along with Congress and outlawed ‘torture’ (McCain/Warner 2005) then did an end run around it with a signing statement, and that time and again it’s been shown that such coercive tactics are not effective for information gathering – no matter how gratifying it may be to ones sense of justice. And doesn’t the administrations end run/signing statement really get to the original point of Michaels post….that the administration is, essentially, doing what it wants despite the repeated efforts of our check-n-blance system. Yes, they’ve been over-ruled in numerous supreme court decisions (wire tapping/FISA, tribunals, etc), but those occur long after the essential infringement upon the rule of law that is a representative democracy….

      Anyway – great discussion everyone (except Flee – who seems to think that berating ones opponent is the same as winning)

    106. NapoleonD
      August 19, 2008 at

      But my lips hurt REAL BAD!

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