November 4th, 2006

From Carpetbagger Report:

The Bush gang won't know you, when you're down and out.

Obviously, in light of this week's revelations, evangelist Ted Haggard is going to have some trouble keeping his old political allies. I suppose a guy learns who is real friends are after he's been accused of having a meth-filled fling with a gay prostitute.

Considering the fact that the president considers loyalty one of the most important qualities a person can have, will Bush stand by his friend Haggard in his time of need? Not so much. Consider yesterday's White House press gaggle:

Q: This Reverend Haggard out in Colorado, is he someone who is close to the White House? There had been reports that he was on the weekly call with evangelicals. Is that true?

MR. FRATTO: I'm actually told that that's not true, that he has — in terms of a weekly call that he has? He had been on a couple of calls, but was not a weekly participant in those calls. I believe he's been to the White House one or two times. I don't want to confine it to a specific number because it would take a while to figure out how many times. But there have been a lot of people who come to the White House….

Yep, now that Haggard is mired in scandal, his old friend the president asks, "Ted who?"

Let's set the record straight here. Every Monday, Haggard has participated in a West Wing conference call with evangelical leaders. He's one of only a handful of religious leaders with immediate access to the Bush White House. Here's a nice pic of Haggard and his friend Bush in the Oval Office. Haggard has personally (and successfully) lobbied the White House on policy issues more than once.

For the Bush gang to now say that Haggard is just some guy who might have been to the White House once or twice is simply wrong. And as it turns out, it's part of a pattern.

When Enron's Ken Lay got into trouble, his long-time friend dropped him like a hot potato. The president was so desperate to distance himself from a man with whom he'd been close friends for years, he even misled reporters about the nature of their relationship.

Similarly, Jack Abramoff and the president were hardly strangers. The disgraced GOP lobbyist has described meeting Bush "in almost a dozen settings," and detailed how he was personally invited to President Bush's private ranch in Crawford, Texas, for a gathering of Bush fundraisers in 2003. They knew each other so well that the president once joked with Abramoff about his weight lifting past, asking him, "What are you benching, buff guy?" Then, after the scandal hit, Bush didn't know his friend anymore. At a January 26 press conference, the president said, "You know, I, frankly, don't even remember having my picture taken with the guy. I don't know him."

When Ralph Reed was flying high, he was a close Bush confidant. When Reed's career fell apart, Bush didn't want to be anywhere near the guy. When Katherine Harris was helping Bush steal a presidential election, she was a key ally. When she looked like a doomed Senate candidate, Bush didn't want to even say her name out loud.

And when Ted Haggard was on top of the evangelical world, Bush was a key ally. When Haggard goes down, the White House says, "There have been a lot of people who come to the White House."

For all the talk about the president and his affinity for loyalty, the fact is the Bush gang considers it a one-way street.

Katherine Harris (R-Cuntasia) At It Again

GOP Senate candidate Katherine Harris prays that Jews convert to Christianity
U.S. Rep. Katherine Harris, who has made past comments that raised questions about her religious sensitivity, prayed in a telephone prayer service recently that God would "bring the hearts and minds of our Jewish brothers and sisters into alignment."
And here's the audio of Harris wishing that those damn Jews would just become Christians. Also, note Harris' creepy reference to "kingdom government" (or governance), which from context sounds like she thinks she's elected to be the Christian God's representative in Congress.

Fucking idiot.

All 4 Leading Military Papers: "Donald Rumsfeld Must Go"

BREAKING: All 4 leading military papers will call Monday for Rumsfeld to resign or be fired

Editor & Publisher was able to get the entire editorial via The Ross Report. It will be published Monday in the Army Times, Air Force Times, Navy Times and Marine Corps Times. Here is the text:


"So long as our government requires the backing of an aroused and informed public opinion ... it is necessary to tell the hard bruising truth."

That statement was written by Pulitzer Prize-winning war correspondent Marguerite Higgins more than a half-century ago during the Korean War.

But until recently, the "hard bruising" truth about the Iraq war has been difficult to come by from leaders in Washington. One rosy reassurance after another has been handed down by President Bush, Vice President Cheney and Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld: "mission accomplished," the insurgency is "in its last throes," and "back off," we know what we're doing, are a few choice examples.

Military leaders generally toed the line, although a few retired generals eventually spoke out from the safety of the sidelines, inciting criticism equally from anti-war types, who thought they should have spoken out while still in uniform, and pro-war foes, who thought the generals should have kept their critiques behind closed doors.

Now, however, a new chorus of criticism is beginning to resonate. Active-duty military leaders are starting to voice misgivings about the war's planning, execution and dimming prospects for success.
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From Alternet:

Haggard, Foley and GOP Preach Against the Vices They Can't Shake
By Nathaniel Frank, Posted November 4, 2006.
Are all homophobic Republicans secretly gay? The leaders of the party with a penchant for condemning others would do well to look inward. It's time to call them on their hypocrisy.

Editor's Note: Also on AlterNet, check out Ted Haggard's admission of "some indiscretions."

In the latest sign of rank hypocrisy among social conservatives, the president of the 30-million member National Association of Evangelicals has resigned amidst accusations that he had a relationship with a male prostitute. Ted Haggard, who is married with five children, is a frequent adviser to the White House, and a staunch advocate of banning marriage rights for gays and lesbians.

The news, of course, comes just a month after Florida GOP Congressman, Mark Foley, who had pushed legislation to protect youth from "exploitation by adults using the internet," was revealed to be an internet sexual predator. And it adds to the sense among weary voters that their leaders, especially if they happen to be Republicans, cannot be trusted to do the right thing. Indeed, the chairman of the National Republican Congressional Committee acknowledged he had been aware of Foley's inappropriate emails for months, but took no steps to protect the children who were in harm's way. Instead, he spearheaded a series of TV ads attacking a Democratic challenger for, yes, being soft on child molesters.
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