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|Mr_Blog's Left Turn||
A Seattle-based journal of Left-wing musings on local, national and world affairs, as well as baseball, pop culture and technology.
Posted July 30, 2008
Feds tipped to 'mob summit'
Raid nets private McCain event
Federal agents acting on a tip from an informant were expecting a high level criminal meeting when they stormed a mansion in Phoenix's wealthy Biltmore community.
Special Agent Joan Edgar Tolson said a confidential informant had alerted the FBI's elite Joint Operating Intelligence Division (JOI Division) to "a big, big sit-down involving shady characters" at the home, owned by local businessman Jack Hussein Londen.
Instead, the heavily armed, black-clad agents burst in on a heavily moneyed, black tie John McCain fundraising event.
"Our first thought when we saw how well dressed the crowd was was that we hit the mother lode," Tolson told a press conference held at JOI Division headquarters. She said their warrant was issued based on the probable cause that Londen is a known kingpin in the insurance and media industries.
Republican National Committee spokesman Strom Hussein Frandle criticized agents for taking too long to realize their error. "JOI Division inconvenienced a lot of people and kept them from important, completely legal special interest activities," said Frandle.
"She's lost control, I'll never know just why or understand," he said of Tolson. He said he would have Tolson fired if it emerges she is not a Republican.
Tolson defended her agents. "A number of people made for the exits when agents first went in, so we thought we were in the right place," Tolson said. He went on to say that one person detained trying to escape through the kitchen was released after he was identified as former Senator Phil Gramm (R-Texas). Also questioned and released was fugitive financier Robert Vesco, who was found halfway out the bathroom window.
Sources say the McCain campaign has turned to small private fundraising events because of the need to distance the presumptive Republican nominee from President Bush, avoid large crowds of protesters, escape media scrutiny, and an inability to fill larger public venues.
However, Leilani Frandle (no relation) of the organization Sane People For the 50 States (SPF-50) told reporters that her group doesn't object to McCain holding fundraisers in private, so long as there is ample sidewalk area out front. "We get nine to ten thousand anti-war protesters every time McCain comes back to Phoenix, your normal neighborhood sidewalks don't have room for that many marchers."
Strom Frandle said accommodating more demonstrators would not be possible, as crowd control would be a burden to local law enforcement. But Lt. Martin Hussein Milner of the Phoenix Police Department said that would not be a problem. "We always like the overtime," Milner said.
Posted July 29, 2008
None dead in non-shooting
Liberal doesn't open fire in church
Tragedy was avoided at an ultra-conservative Kentucky church on Sunday, when an emotionally balanced liberal did not shoot and kill members of the fundamentalist congregation.
Church spokesman John Threesixteen smiled and paused his Tivo in mid-700 Club when reporters called Monday with questions about Norm Descript, a registered Democrat from Louisville.
"We were somewhat concerned when he pulled into the parking lot in his Saab 9000. We don't get a lot of Obama bumper stickers here," said Threesixteen.
"I talked to Mr. Descript following the worship service, and he said he was just curious about us, and wanted to reach out to conservatives. To each his own, I guess," Threesixteen said.
Threesixteen said Descript did not snap, scream, draw a weapon, or fire shots of any kind.
Police did not find a note in Descript's vehicle expressing anger over the "conservative movement" and its intolerance of gay couples, among other things.
Officers who went to Descript's home following the non-shooting found books by the Dalai Lama, Noam Chomsky and Al Franken.
In other news, Sen. Ted Stevens (R-Alaska) was indicted today on corruption charges. A Washington grand jury issued the indictment concerning false statements Stevens made about an oil services company in Alaska, and a series of Internet tubes installed in his home.
Another message from John McCain
Hello, my friends. It's me again, John Sidney McCain III, bringing you another installment in my ongoing series, Spare Change You Can Believe In.
My opponent Barack Hussein Obama has been telling Americans that I'm running for President Bush's third term. Bloomers! There are all kinds of differences between the president and me.
How's this for different: a market-based solution to homeland security.
People seem upset about domestic surveillance. Fine, I can see their point. When Phil Gramm wants to pick up the phone and call me, no one needs to listen-in on two old farts chatting about recipes, "The Young & Restless," energy trading deregulation, or sub prime mortgage bundling.
Here's some Spare Change You Can Believe In: when I'm in the White House, Americans will be able to get a new USA Rewards card.
Here's how the USA Rewards system will work. In exchange for access to all your PINs and passwords (which I promise will be used for marketing purposes only), you'll earn Patriot Points every time you pay FICA, donate to participating political parties, or reenlist in the armed forces.
Patriot Points will be redeemable for interest on disaster repair loans, discount admissions to national parks and the Smithsonian, flu shots, food stamps, and assistance from faith-based organizations.
Most important is that the USA Rewards card will keep you safe. A harmless little GPS chip called the Super America National Tracking Aide, or SANTA, will let the DHS know where you are at all times, and whether you're sleeping, awake, bad or good. Everyone loves SANTA, my friends, and SANTA is Uncle Sam's best friend on Facebook. SANTA will help DHS identify troublemakers and assign them COAL status, short for Communist or Arab, Likely.
So to sum up: not Bush's third term; Rewards card; big discounts; keeping you safe; Christmas.
One last thing. It takes a long time to say "my friends," my friends. So from now on I'm going to do like the texters do, and shorten it to 'MFs,' and sometimes 'MFers.' Because I'm young and hep too.
So thanks for listening, MFers. Please join me again for the next: Spare Change You Can Believe In.
Previously: A message from John McCain (Ragebot)
Posted July 28, 2008
by Kim Jong Il
If you want to be dropped from the Axis Of Evil, you need to level with
me: what's really going on at your secret facility at Yongbyon? Signed,
Christopher R. Hill, Assistant Secretary of State for East Asian and
Posted July 23, 2008
Bachmann seeks sustainable energy future
"Today's animals are tomorrow's petroleum," Congresswoman says
Representative Michele Bachmann (R-Minnesota) today announced she is launching a new initiative to put the U.S. on a path to a sustainable energy future. The conservative lawmaker, in a speech to the Better Living Through Dividends Institute, a Washington DC think tank, said "the obvious thing to do is to make the supply of oil self-sustaining."
"We need to get started today on making sure the Earth's supply of oil is sustainable. My plan proceeds from the scientific fact that oil from beneath the Alaska tundra and from under the ocean floor came from dinosaurs. Therefore we should start killing as much wildlife as we can now, caribou for instance, and bury them deep in the earth so that they may become petrochemicals for future generations," said Bachmann.
"Put simply, today's animals are tomorrow's petroleum," she said.
Because organic matter takes millions of years to become oil, Bachmann asserts that her plan actually takes a longer-term view toward solving the energy crisis than the energy challenge issued last week by Al Gore. The former Vice President said America can convert to a electricity supply based on solar, wind and other alternative sources in as few as ten years.
Bachmann dismissed Gore's proposal. "Ten years? That's not long enough. Just in case I'm wrong about this whole Second Coming of Jesus thing, Earth has billions of years left until the Sun goes nova. That should be our planning horizon, not Al Gore's quick-fix, Band-Aid approach," Bachmann said.
Bachmann went on to say she is drafting legislation that will put her plan into action. The first step will be to exempt from environmental protection laws all aspects of exploration, extraction, refining and transportation of oil. "The process of finding oil and getting it to our gas pumps should be able to wipe out as much wildlife as possible, helping ensure there will be new petroleum reserves far far in the future," Bachmann added.
"My plan literally kills millions of birds with one stone," she said.
Posted July 21, 2008
Satire, 40,000 B.C. - 2008 A.D.
Satire, the once-popular cultural icon held by many to have shaped the fortunes of princes, presidents and empires, died last week after a long battle with political correctness and reality television. Satire was 42,008 years old.
Born in a humble cave in the mountains of northern Italy, young Satire first made his mark around the campfires of his home region, winning acclaim as a keen observer of Cro Magnon life. One of his most popular early routines involved the character Hunter, a club-wielding alpha male who killed the most deer and coupled with the most women, but really just wanted to invent agriculture.
The discovery of fire led to the rise of slapstick comedy, and Satire went through a number of lean years. Then in 20 B.C. he engineered the first of many reinventions of himself. He changed his name to Reynard Obliquian Satyricon, and became the toast of Rome -- Augustus called him "the sly fox" of political comedy. During this time, Satire's greatest bit involved Roman leaders naming the months of the year after themselves. When the time came to decide who would be the shortest month, Februarius objected that "I just went swimming, I'm normally much longer than 28 days."
Satire became a symbol of high culture for the next two millennia. Satire was everywhere, often in the company of a 'rat pack' of cultural indicators, including fermentation, batter-dipped fried food and Sammy Davis, Jr. Satire returned briefly to Rome, giving a benefit concert for the Galileo Defense Fund, joking that "the real problem is that the Pope thinks the universe revolves around him."
Later, Satire formed a comedy troupe with Thomas Malthus, Jonathan Swift and Adam Smith, to great acclaim.
In recent years Satire showed no signs of slowing. Dave Barry, The Onion, The Simpsons and the Capitol Steps seemed to show Satire at the height of his game.
However, what was not widely known was that Satire had been ill for some time, suffering from Reaganoma since 1980. A few years later, MTV's The Real World debuted, and appreciation for Satire rapidly went downhill. Earlier this year, an ABC-Ipsos poll found that few Americans had heard of Satire.
Then last Monday Satire was badly injured when the cover illustration of The New Yorker fell flat. Passersby and the media failed to notice Satire's condition for nearly a day, before he was found and rushed to Memorial Sloan-Kettering Hospital. He lingered for four days, passing away on Friday.
His fourth wife, Tracey Ullmann, was with him at the end. According to her, his last words were: "either that wallpaper goes, or tell them I said something."
Posted July 15, 2008
Bush warns of Axis of Whining
Shores up McCain, Gramm
President Bush today named the members of an anti-prosperity group he says threatens the U.S. economy, dubbing them "the axis of whining."
Bush's statement was clearly intended to support recent policy proposals by the campaign of his intended successor, apparent Republican nominee Sen. John Sidney McCain III. Last week McCain's chief economic adviser, ex-senator and current Swiss banker Phil Gramm (R-UBS) stated that America is in an imaginary "mental recession" caused by "whiners."
In this morning's statement at the White House, Bush said he agreed with Gramm.
"I agree with Phil Gramm. In fact, the National Sales Agency [NSA] has identified those responsible," Bush told journalists.
"Economic insurgents are cutting back on spending, and launching attacks of non-spending on big box stores, gas stations and the services sector. This threat to our consumer confidence is nothing less than an axis of whining," the president said.
"Even worse, they are saving the economic stimulus checks I so generously sent them, instead of spending patriotically."
In other news, the Washington, DC area was hit by rolling blackouts
yesterday, the result of Vice President Dick Cheney's annual appointment at
the cardiologist. "We attached the jumper cables and hit the Go button
on the EKG, and all of a sudden everything for a 10 block radius went
dark," explained Jennifer Frandle, 24, a medical technologist at George
Washington University Hospital.
Posted July 14, 2008
NAIVE steps up Obama criticism
Stance on New Yorker another move to right, Dem group says
A splinter group of disaffected Democrats today stepped up its criticism of Barack Obama, shortly after a statement by the presumptive Democratic nominee's campaign called a New Yorker Magazine cover illustration of Obama and his wife "tasteless."
Nation Against Insensitivity in Voting and Elections (NAIVE) said Obama's official reaction to the illustration "is yet another sign of Obama's unwelcome move to the right," according to NAIVE founder Suzanne Birkenstock, 23.
The tempest arose in response to the urbane magazine's cover -- satirizing the widespread myth that Obama is Muslim -- depicting an afro-ed Michele Obama, in terrorist garb, bumping fists with her husband, shown wearing Muslim clothes.
"Pretending not to understand satire is clearly an appeal to the dumbed-down, 'Blue Collar Comedy'-watching electorate who live west of the Hudson River," said a clearly disappointed Birkenstock.
"A real liberal doesn't distance himself from the New Yorker. A real liberal smirks and chuckles knowingly upon seeing one of its famously esoteric illustrations or cartoons," said Birkenstock.
"This new pretense of Obama's, this jejeune faux outrage, can only be seen as another slap in the face to the left-wing, liberal, intellectual, Central Park West, Brandeis University, socialist summer camps and the father with the Ben Shahn drawings, really strike-oriented, red diaper base of the Democratic Party," she said.
Birkenstock founded NAIVE to advocate against a landslide Democratic victory in November. The group maintains that a razor-thin Obama victory would be better for the self esteem of less-popular candidate John Sidney McCain III, and combat what Birkenstock calls "the psychologically damaging effects to society, not to mention a poor example to the children, of having a political system that creates clear winners and losers."
Posted July 10, 2008
Iran missiles alarm U.S.
"Could carry pitchers of nucular bombs," Bush says
The world is facing a grave threat due to long-range missile tests by Iran, President Bush said today. Iran test-fired nine unarmed missiles during war games near the Strait of Hormuz, including the Shahab-3, with a range of more than 1900 kilometers.
The threat posed by Iran has gone beyond the desire to acquire nuclear weapons, which Bush has warned of in the past. In the very near future, Iranian missiles could be carrying pictures of such weapons, the president said.
Bush likened the present danger to the illustrations of mobile chemical weapons labs former Secretary of State Colin Powell showed the United Nations in 2003. Addressing the assistant manager of the Performance Bike Shop in Fairfax, Virginia, Bush said, "We're no longer talkin' about Iran havin' the notion of gettin' nucular bombs. This time we're talkin' real live actual pitchers of bombs."
He also cited intelligence reports he said offered evidence of Iranian intentions. "British intelligence says, in those funny accents they have, that Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has enrolled in a basic drawing class at the Academy of Fine Arts in Prague, in the Czech Republic. There's evidence he is purchasing high-grade, acid-free paper in the form of sketch pads by Strathmore, Academie and Canson. Iran has also tried to buy yellow paint, from Utrecht Art Supply," Bush told the assistant manager.
On Thursday, Powell's successor Condoleezza Rice explained to the Senate Intelligence Committee that going from possessing pictures of nuclear weapons to acquiring the weapons themselves is relatively easy.
"After basic drawing, it is but a short step to life drawing, then technical drawing classes at a junior college," said Rice. She went on to say that if Ahmadinejad's grades are good enough, he could get accepted at a state college, and declare a major in nuclear physics.
"Assuming he graduates and goes on to his Masters and a doctoral program, Ahmadinejad could produce schematics for a nuclear weapon in 10-15 years," said Rice. To prevent such an occurrence, the U.S. needs to act preëmptively, she said.
"We can't wait for the proof that could come in the form of a mushroom cloud drawn on a Pee-Chee," Rice said.
New Dem group wants fair election
Wants Obama to avoid "piling on" McCain
A new Democratic activist group has formed around the idea of a fair 2008 presidential election.
The group, Nation Against Insensitivity in Voting and Elections (NAIVE), has been in the planning stages for the past month. It's official launch came Tuesday.
NAIVE founder Suzanne Birkenstock, 23, started the group after hearing a number of liberal media commentators predict a landslide Barack Obama victory. This troubled Birkenstock, a student who is studying for her certificate in intervention mediation.
"It sounded unfair to me that one person running for president could have such a lopsided victory over the other person. It smacks of 'piling on'," said Birkenstock.
"Anyone who remembers going through grade school covered in dodgeball welts can appreciate the importance of not piling on," she said. That was when she decided Obama should be gracious in victory, and agree to seek only a small margin of victory over Sen. John Sidney McCain III, the presumptive Republican nominee.
"There is nothing wrong with being less popular, NAIVE merely wants the less popular candidate to be treated fairly," explained Walter Crocs, 24, the group's director of sensitive outreach.
"Too much in our country is about popularity. Well, look at where that relentless pursuit of popularity has taken us," he said.
Crocs went on to say that NAIVE hopes to strengthen the Democratic Party by building its character. "The Democratic Party stands for fairness. What better way to live that promise, than to avoid humiliating your opponent in 49-state electoral college sweep?"
NAIVE chief political strategist Teva Espadrille, 27, said the Obama campaign has rejected her group's requests so far. She said the NAIVE effort would instead appeal directly to the people through the mainstream media. "First, we plan to discuss the issues. We're going to portray Obama's detailed, multi-layered positions on FISA, public financing and Iraq as flip-flops. We'll also point out that his appeals to win independent voters is actually a move to the right. This should go a long way toward creating a closer, fairer election," Espadrille said.
Espadrille said the other NAIVE strategy is to promote a policy of inclusion for independent and third party presidential candidates Ralph Nader, Bob Barr (Libertarian) and Cynthia McKinney (Green). "We're huge fans of Ralph Nader, he has a proven track record of creating close elections. And look at how gracious in defeat Al Gore was --it shows our approach works."
Birkenstock emphasized her group does not want McCain to win, just that he shouldn't be humiliated in defeat. "That's the NAIVE philosophy, so much respect for our adversaries that we want them to have a fighting chance," she said.
"It's not like the Republicans would steal it. Again."
Posted July 7, 2008
"Bestest ever" birthday for Bush
McCain gives President pony
(Toyako, Japan) The leaders of the Group of 8 industrialized countries helped President Bush celebrate his 62nd birthday yesterday, throwing the POTUS a spectacular birthday bash -- bigger even than the party for Germany's head of state in 1944, according to Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice.
Bush had arrived in Japan for what he thought would be a hard-working G-8 summit. On the agenda were important issues including aid to Africa and reducing carbon emissions. But when Bush entered the conference room in this resort town in northern Japan, he was met with a shower of confetti and balloons, and a buffet table featuring hot dogs, Fritos and, of course, Kool-Aid. The party was rumored to have cost the U.S. State Department as much as $0.000000025 billion at Costco.
Featured at the party were comedian Dennis Miller, the song stylings of Pat Boone, and the antics of the Grape Ape, the G-8's official costumed mascot who is a favorite of children at exclusive boarding schools all over Switzerland and New England.
There was no birthday cake, because Bush said he's dieting in order to fit into a new pair of mountain bike shorts.
Not in attendance was Bush's heir apparent, Sen. John Sidney McCain III. McCain was taking the weekend off from campaigning, but the apparent GOP nominee for president sent a gift that Bush praised as "the bestest ever" -- a pony.
Appropriately, the steed is no ordinary equine, but a veteran of the Iraq occupation. Named "T.J. Hoofer," the brown Shetland served his first tour of duty in late 2003 as part of a support team searching for WMD, and later for improvised explosive devices.
T.J. Hoofer served two more tours before being severely wounded in March 2007, when an IED cost him three legs. However, he entered the rehabilitation program at the USDA's Meat Animal Research Center, where he met McCain during a goodwill visit by the senator.
McCain saw to it that the pony received three high-technology replacement limbs manufactured by Airbus/EADS, a provision contained within the Air Force tanker contract.
Bush took T.J. Hoofer for a ride around the Toyako area Sunday evening, but it was a bittersweet excursion. On Wednesday T.J. Hoofer is scheduled to be redeployed to Afghanistan for his fourth tour of duty.
Posted July 1, 2008
Bush Not Unpopular
Voted Federal Employee of the Month
President Bush has been honored as the U.S. government's Federal Employee of the Month for July, the General Services Administration announced today.
The White House is calling the award a repudiation of recent survey data giving Bush an approval rating of 28% -- the lowest ever recorded for any U.S. president.
"The president's win on Employee of the Month shows how popular he is among his peers, it shows you can't trust the polls," said White House press secretary Dana Perino.
"What's important is that he's doing a heck of a job, going about the business of running the government," Perino said.
And a heck of a job he has been doing. In the first six months of 2008, Bush has been a veritable whirlwind of activity. He has filled in for an executive assistant in the Department of Housing and Urban Development who started her maternity leave, replaced burned out fluorescent tubes at the Pentagon, and job-shadowed a tour guide at the National Air & Space Museum.
Perhaps his most critical contribution was his three-week stint helping out with the Government Printing Office's stockroom inventory.
"He was really detail-oriented," said Ken Frandle, the stockroom manager.
"Thanks to George, we didn't run out of OMB Form 424A. He really deserves this award," Frandle said.
For winning Employee of the Month, Bush will receive a $50 gift certificate to The Olive Garden, a $25 U.S. Savings Bond, a profile in the federal employee newsletter, and use of the Employee of the Month parking space at the Executive Office Building.
There are 3 comments
July 18, 2008 - 14:45
Subject: Bush warns of Axis of Whining
Just wanted to say hi. Haven't stopped by your site in a while--it is just so funny. The level of invention--as Jessica Simpson would say--"Guh!" Even a right wing, Gonzo-like person such as myself can appreciate it. Hope things are well.
July 19, 2008 - 01:25
Subject: Re: Bush warns of Axis of Whining
It's always good to hear from you, take care Miranda.
July 08, 2008 - 23:11
Subject: Bush Not Unpopular
That's awesome. I'm actually starting to feel bad for the guy. I can totally see him with the little plaque up on the wall next next to the 4-H honorable mention ribbon. Hilarious post.
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