Our civilian and military leadership: consciously lying, or just utterly delusional?

The civilian and military leadership of this country appears to be either in a state of utter denial, or worse, consciously and systematically attempting to persuade the American public to deny reality.
Dick Cheney claims the insurgency in Iraq is “in the last throes” and says “we’re making major progress there. […] They had elections, free elections, really for the first time in centuries in January of this year.” [I’ll resist asking exactly when, previously, Iraq had “free elections”. :)]
Gen. Richard Myers, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, says that “the trend lines [in Iraq] are up.” … and he’s not referring to the number of American casualties (1,656) or the numbers below.
By their logic, the more casualties the insurgency inflicts, the more car bombs that go off, the more suicide bombers that blow themselves up in the midst of a crowd, the more desperate the insurgency is, and the closer to the end of the war we are.
I suppose this means that if we see Baghdad taken out by a suitcase nuke, we can expect to hear our leaders proclaiming a national day of celebration in honor of our final victory in Iraq. V.I. Day, anyone?
Iraqi military prepares largest offensive
– May recorded 140 car bombings, the highest number ever

According to a senior U.S. military intelligence official in Baghdad, more than 140 car bombings occurred in May, beating the old record of 135 in April. He also said the nearly 60 suicide bombings in May were down from 69 in April.

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Take Back America Conference This Week

I am leaving in the morning to attend the Take Back America 2005 conference in Washington, DC. I will be traveling all day Tuesday. The conference is Wednesday – Friday. I hope I will be able to post some observations about the conference while I am there.
If you are attending this conference, drop me a line!

Join Progressive Secretary

ProgressiveSecretary.org sends progressive email letters to Congress, the President, and other officials on peace, ecology, civil rights and other issues. Letters come to your IN box. If you like them, you hit REPLY. It goes out with your name. Simple. This is a FREE service. It is volunteer-run.

ProgressiveSecretary.org sends progressive email letters to Congress, the President, and other officials on peace, ecology, civil rights and other issues. Letters come to your IN box. If you like them, you hit REPLY. It goes out with your name. Simple. This is a FREE service. It is volunteer-run. Since I’ve joined, over 1,000 letters on a wide variety of issues have gone out in my name – many of which have clearly been read, judging by the responses I’ve gotten.

National Democratic Party a liability to local progressive Democrats?

Well, at least in Portland, Maine, that appears to be the case, see this article about the impact Green Independent Party members elected to the local school board are having.

Sive Neilan, head of the Portland Democratic City Committee, said the Greens are making inroads in city politics because they run effective campaigns. “They really have that piece of the politic down.”

She said voters who are frustrated with the lack of new ideas in the national Democratic Party tend to mistakenly view Democrats here in the same light.

Yet, she said, Portland Democrats have long led progressive causes. “They have fought the right causes for a very long time, but people new to politics equate us with the people in Washington, and that is simply not the case.”

But The President Says It Isn’t!

I’m on my way out for the day, going to the San Francisco Zoo. But I wanted to ask a question that has been on my mind.
The Iraq War is said to be part of the “War on Terror.” But President Bush has said that Iraq had nothing to do with the 9/11 attack and al-Queda. He has said that the Iraq War is about “freeing the people of Iraq from a terrible dictator.”
I honor the sacrifice of our men and women in the Armed Forces. And freeing the people of Iraq is a noble cause, though I sure wish America had had the option of approving it or not on those terms. But I wonder why so many people this Memorial Day continue to talk about the men and women fighting in Iraq to protect OUR freedom, and fighting the War On Terror? Don’t they believe President Bush when he says that is not what this war is about?

Key Article To Read

Robert Kuttner at American Prospect has written a key article on the state of Progressive politics. He picks the title up from the widely-discussed Death of Environmentalism essay.
Take a look at The Death and Life of American Liberalism: The right has shown that conviction beats vacillation. Can liberals acquire some spine?
It’s late. I’ll write about it soon.

They ARE Speaking Out

From a Kos diary: If a Senate Minority Leader Gives a Speech,

… to the National Press Club, a major policy speech, and hardly anybody reports it, has he made a sound?
[. . .] CNN? Nothing.
Fox News? Nothing.

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Kevin Drum went to the bookstore to find a good book on American history. He found one, but it was set in 9-point type and was too hard to read, so he put it back on the shelf. He guesses that the publisher was trying to save money on paper. He put it back on the shelf. I suspect that some marketing weenie (disclaimer, I’m allowed to say that) got a bonus for reducing the cost of goods. Short-term, money saved. Longer-term, sales dry up.
It reminds me of all the stores, airports, etc. that “save money” by buying really cheap, thin toilet (scratchy) paper. Sure, it costs less per roll. But why don’t they “get it” that people have to use FOUR TIMES AS MUCH PAPER?! Buyng that stuff doesn’t save money, it forces people to use so much more that your real costs probably goes up. Short-term, save some money. Longer-term, it costs more. Duh!

Democrats Speaking Out

A lot of bloggers, readers here and commenters at other blogs complain that the Democrats don’t speak out enough. I think what is going on is that they are speaking out, every day, and the media is not covering it. Meanwhile the Right gets full-time media coverage of their crap. For example, John Conyers has been posting regularly at Daily Kos. (This and this, just today.) And Senator Reid said this today: Reid Lays Out Reform Agenda,

Time and again, the American people have seen George Bush and the Republican leadership choose between their partisan interests and the people’s interest. And every time, they have chosen an ideological agenda over an American agenda.
[. . .]Six moths have passed since this Republican Congress began and here’s their record:
They spent precious days trying to overturn constitutional principles.
They tried to overturn the decisions of courts and duly elected legislatures in order to insert themselves into one family’s tragedy in Florida.
They all-but disbanded the House Ethics Committee in order to protect the Republican leader from scrutiny — but then were forced to reverse themselves under public pressure.
But perhaps the greatest abuse of power is to have the ability to help but choose to do nothing.

They ARE speaking out. Tell me, do you see any of this covered in the press?
(Through NDN Blog)