A heavy dose of truth, humor, and political activism.

Location: Phila, Pennsylvania, United States

Monday, September 18, 2006


PAINT A BETTER PICTURE (BY THE NUMBERS) The American military did not count people killed by bombs, mortars, rockets or other mass attacks (including suicide bombings) when it reported a dramatic drop in the number of murders in the Baghdad area last month, the U.S. command said Monday. The decision to include only victims of drive-by shootings and those killed by torture and execution (usually at the hands of death squads) allowed U.S. officials to make the argument that a security crackdown (that began in the capital Aug. 7) had more than halved the city's murder rate. To make matters worse, the types of slayings (including suicide bombings) that the U.S. excluded from the category of "murder" were not made explicit at the time. Is there anything this administration will not do to make their enormous blunder in Iraq look like less of a mistake? Gen. William B. Caldwell, said violence had dropped significantly because of the operation. Caldwell said "attacks in Baghdad were well below the monthly average for July. Since Aug. 7, the murder rate in Baghdad dropped 52 percent from the daily rate for July." Of course the rate dropped! That’s what happens when you exclude almost every major source of violent death. I think corporations will probably start following suit. McDonald’s could claim that the Big-Mac is actually quite good for you (if they don’t account for any fat or calories that come from the cheese, buns, meat, or special sauce). Ford could say their cars now get unlimited fuel mileage (if you don’t count any driving that occurs once you leave your garage). You can always make numbers seem better if you doctor them to your liking. That is EXACTLY what the Bush administration is doing here. Last Monday, for example, at least 20 of the 26 people slain in the capital were killed in bombings. "These comments were intended to highlight some specific indicators of progress and were never stated in relation to broader casualty figures," U.S. military spokesman Lt. Col. Barry Johnson said. I should use this tactic at work.
“Mr. Miller, it has come to our attention that you haven’t been doing much work around the office this week,”
“Actually I have spent every single minute of my time here working my butt off this week!”
This could be an honest statement if I do not count time spent talking on the phone, checking my email, surfing the web, updating my four fantasy football teams, going to lunch, going to the bathroom, daydreaming, getting coffee, talking to co-workers, instant-messaging friends, and napping.
“Mr. Miller we observed you doing all sorts of non-work related activities including two hours when you appeared to be sleeping at your desk,”
"These comments were intended to highlight some specific indicators of my work progress and were never stated in relation to broader work productivity figures,"
That would work, right? Isn’t the President supposed to be representative of the American people? Sadly, the only people Dubya represents are those foolish enough to believe his lies, religious zealots who want their hateful agendas made into laws (no abortion, no gay marriage, jesus on the $1 bill, etc), military personal who are blinded by love for their country (and will follow their leader in chief no matter where he leads them), and those he has succeeded into frightening enough that they truly think that Iraq is our enemy and that we are now more safe then we were five years ago. Maybe I’m just being too hard on him. After all, Bush is a great President (if you don’t factor in anything he’s done since taking office).
PARDON ME? YOU’RE GOING TO PARDON WHO? This week, the Senate is planning to very quietly hold a vote that would pardon President Bush for breaking the law by illegally wiretapping innocent Americans without warrants. Senator Leahy says, the bill would "...immunize officials who have violated federal law by authorizing such illegal activities." It’s pretty simple, President Bush broke the law (and courts are starting to agree). Judiciary Committee Chairman Arlen Specter had once said that the wire-tapping program was illegal "on its face." Now caving under pressure from Vice President Cheney, the two introduced legislation that marks a new low. This bill justifies everything the president did! Worse, it makes it legal to wiretap Americans, in secret, without warrants or oversight, whenever the administration wants to. This sets a very dangerous president. If the President can break the law whenever he sees fit, and can later have bills passed that not only allow him to get away with his behavior but make the behavior legal in the future, he will be even more wildly unchecked. In this era of election fraud, constant lying to the American public and the world, the Patriot Act, and blatant illegal behavior by government officials, we can not allow to lose the one small power we have left: accountability. So far, Democrats (and some Republicans) are holding strong against the bill, and there are good chances to stop it if enough of us speak up. Many legal experts agree that the president's program to wiretap Americans who have nothing to do with terrorism violates the law. President Bush already has the authority to wiretap suspected terrorists (or anyone it likes as long as it gets approval from a court). Instead, of trying to let President Bush off the hook completely, Congress should be trying to hold him accountable. It’s their job! Why haven’t we heard more about this on TV and in the papers? For the same reason that we never hear about things like this, the papers and television networks are all owned by Dubya supporters. Instead we’ll get a nice puffy front page story about a local murder and the evening news will take ten minutes to tell us about hurricanes that will not come within hundreds of miles of the United States. I sure feel informed after a solid 30 minutes of TV news, don’t you?
Here are some quick facts about the Cheney-Specter bill that you won’t find on TV or in the paper:
*It allows President Bush (and every president after him) to wiretap Americans indefinitely, in secret, without a warrant and without any oversight. (Does anything he does use any sort of oversight?)
*It effectively pardons the president for any illegal behavior by forcing Congress to concede that he has the inherent authority to conduct the program (something federal courts, numerous legal experts and many leading Republicans disagree with).
*It completely guts FISA (Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act) which has protected the privacy of Americans against illegal wiretaps for close to 30 years. (What’s a little privacy when compared to the “war on terror” and spreading freedom to the world?).
*It prevents any legal challenges from taking place in the public court system. Instead, it moves all cases to a secret court, where only Bush administration officials can argue it. (Who do you think the judge in secret court would be? Dick Cheney, or Neil Bush?)
*It would help "immunize" any officials who broke the law in this program from being held accountable in the future. (Maybe they can use Tami-Flu for this. They certainly purchased enough from Rumsfeld’s former company).
Since the wire-tapping program was exposed in December of last year, it’s been learned that President Bush personally blocked a Justice Department investigation of the program, Vice President Cheney also personally intervened to stop telecom companies from testifying to Congress about it, and a federal court recently ruled the program unconstitutional (but what do they know anyway?). It’s like he stills thinks he’s a little kid and he can steal some candy from the store. When he gets caught, he just has his mommy get him off the hook but he’s truly sorry, honest. Enough is enough. I urge you all to contact your senator ASAP and demand that this bill not pass. These reckless politicians will push the envelope as far as we let them. It’s time we start pushing back. Pick up the phone, write a letter, or send an email…whatever it is, do something. If not, the next time you feel like picking up the phone and calling someone big brother might be listening, and this time, it could be legal.
THE RUMORS OF MY DEATH HAVE BEEN GREATLY EXAGGERATED Hello readers and welcome back to the Spoon, Full of Truth. I am truly sorry for my extended absence here at the Spoon as the last month has been a whirlwind of emotions. The time to fret has ended, the Spoon is back! Please continue to share the Spoon, the link, and the truth with everyone you know. Nothing says I care like the gift of knowledge. I welcome you all back with open arms and hopefully (as before) with open minds.


Anonymous The Nance said...

I needed a breath of fresh air and it came just in time. And I don't mean that delivered by the FAN - that 1 minute video broadcast offered to me everytime I log onto comcast.net. So glad you are back to keep us all focused on the real truth as we approach the mid-term elections here in the US. If we stay focused (in contrast to the Eagles performance in the 4th quarter of yesterday's game), we may be in a position to take our power back from that guy who stole the presidency.

September 18, 2006 6:23 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Welcome back Spoonfull. You are right on target.Once again Bush and his team are doing everything in their power to keep the facts fuzzy about the war in Iraq.It is imperative that voters seize the opportunity in November to do something about the Bush-Republican Congress nightmare.We need an electorate to be active and engaged.Bush cannot continue his failed efforts if we don't let him. Thanks for your efforts to give us the truth.

September 19, 2006 11:03 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I love your blog.You are so right about the logic involved. From now on, I am kingsizing my meal at McDonalds. If I don't count the calories from the fries , bun , special sauce, etc., my waist size won't increase,I will have no worries about cholestrol.I like this way of calculating.

September 19, 2006 2:37 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree. Bush is... is... what's the word I want? To find out, read about Hugo Chavez's speech to the U.N. at: http://vpvenezuela.blogspot.com

September 20, 2006 11:53 PM  

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