Thursday, October 18, 2007

Dodd!

Wow.

Chris Dodd has just placed a hold on the FISA bil, which would extend retroactive immunity to the telecom companies that illegally shared private call records with the US Government. There were enough idiotic, spineless, cowardly democrats (Hello, Diane Feinstein!) to pass the bill-- but Dodd's hold will force the issue to come to a vote-- and theoretically, Dodd could filibuster, which would require 60 votes to overcome.

(Thanks to Kagro X for his excellent analysis of what the hold means.)

This is pretty damn impressive. Dodd is really sticking his neck out. Here's what he says on his web site:
The Military Commissions Act. Warrantless wiretapping. Shredding of Habeas Corpus. Torture. Extraordinary Rendition. Secret Prisons.

No more.

I have decided to place a “hold” on the latest FISA bill that would have included amnesty for telecommunications companies that enabled the President’s assault on the Constitution by illegally providing personal information on their customers without judicial authorization.

I said that I would do everything I could to stop this bill from passing, and I have.

It’s about delivering results — and as I’ve said before, the FIRST thing I will do after being sworn into office is restore the Constitution. But we shouldn’t have to wait until then to prevent the further erosion of our country’s most treasured document. That’s why I am stopping this bill today.

I can't say that I'm officially a Dodd supporter now ( I like Edwards and Obama, for feasible candidates, and Gore as a pseudocandidate) but this is heartening for an activist like me getting more and more cynical about the Democratic majority by the minute.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Just what we needed

Turkey's parliament has voted that the Turkish Military can invade Iraq.

This clusterfuck of a regional war doesn't get any simpler, does it, Mr. Bush?

Accuracy in polling

Brilliant.

Mark Blumenthal, the Mystery Pollster, on how to identify potential spin and bias on every poll.

Starting today we will begin to formally request answers to a limited but fundamental set of methodological questions for every public poll asking about the primary election.


This will be an enormous help to those of us who try to parse the polls this year...

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

You're joking, right?

The NY Sun and Fox News, unable to acknowledge Gore's Nobel Peace Prize victory without getting their hypocritical, twisted tongues caught in their throats, have wasted no time attacking him for all manner of illogical faults. That doesn't surprise me.

This, though, is something else. You really do have to be living in an alternate universe to nominate General David Petraeus, currently the architect of a major war that's causing, um, anything but peace in the Middle East, for "The Next Nobel".

Oh, wait- half of Congress (and 28% of Americans) are living in an alternate universe.

What's a little torture among friends?

TPM reports that Mitt Romney's security advisor openly supports torturing prisoners, quote:
I'd stick a knife in somebody's thigh in a heartbeat.
When did this become an acceptable form of discourse in America? How did this -- OPENLY SUPPORTING TORTURE -- become the preferred stance for legitimate Republican presidential candidates?

Oh, yeah. Because Gonzales told us so:
physical torture "must be equivalent in intensity to the pain accompanying serious physical injury, such as organ failure, impairment of bodily function, or even death."

Frank Rich is right. We are the Good Germans, the Mitlaeufer, the ones who went along and said nothing.
Martin Niem├Âller:

Als sie mich holten,
gab es keinen mehr, der protestieren konnte.

And when they came for me,
There was no one left who could protest.