Friday, July 30, 2004


See Wednesday's post, the Winds of Change, below:

First thanks to Kevin's comments, links to individual posts are now available - just click on the "permanent" link below each post, as needed.

Second, for those interested, an abbreviated version of Wednesday's post, appeared in this morning's Portland Oregonian, both on-line and in the newspaper itself.

Posted by a Vet -- -- permanent link

A Shock to Mr. Bush and His Handlers

Surprise, Mr. Bush, you have a more-than-worthy opponent, and now the rest of the country knows it. The contest is on. Enjoy your next three months in office. It's just about enough time to plan your move back to Texas.

UPDATE: as an emailer and a commenter below pointed out, however, exit strategies are not one of Mr. Bush's strongpoints.

Posted by a Vet -- -- permanent link

But I thought All those Generals and Admirals Always Supported the Republican...

Our reporter was on the scene again yesterday outside the West Wing:

KR: Mr. President, 12 retired big name Generals and Admirals came forward in support yesterday and...
GWB: It's about time those guys came forward for me. We need to show everybody that I'm still the Commander-in-Chief.
KB: But, Mr. President, they came forward for John Kerry and, in fact, one was a woman...


GWB: Can we bring them all back on active duty and court martial them?

(Thanks to Iddybud for the link)

Posted by a Vet -- -- permanent link

Thursday, July 29, 2004

People Get Ready, There is a Train About to Start Rolling, Out of Boston, Straight to Washington D.C. in November

“… that we can participate in the political process without fear of retribution; and that our votes will be counted -- or at least, most of the time… If there's a senior citizen somewhere who can't pay for their prescription and having to choose between medicine and the rent, that makes my life poorer, even if it's not my grandparent… It is that fundamental belief -- it is that fundamental belief -- I am my brother's keeper, I am my sister’s keeper -- that makes this country work…

The pundits, the pundits like to slice and dice our country into red states and blue States: red states for Republicans, blue States for Democrats. But I've got news for them, too. We worship an awesome God in the blue states, and we don't like federal agents poking around our libraries in the red states… In the end, that's what this election is about. Do we participate in a politics of cynicism, or do we participate in a politics of hope?”

-- Barack Obama, July 27, 2004

People get ready, there's a train comin'
You don't need no baggage, you just get on board
All you need is faith to hear the diesels hummin'
You don't need no ticket, you just thank the lord

People get ready, there's a train to Jordan
Picking up passengers coast to coast

Faith is the key, open the doors and board them
There's hope for all among those loved the most

There ain't no room for the hopeless sinner
Whom would hurt all mankind - just to save his own

Have pity on those whose chances grow thinner
For there is no hiding place against the kingdoms throne

People get ready there's a train comin'
You don't need no baggage, just get on board
All you need is faith to hear the diesels hummin'
You don't need no ticket, just thank the lord.

PEOPLE GET READY, Words and music by Curtis Mayfield (1964)

Courtesy of Dr. Gerry S., a high school friend who lives out the life that John Edwards talked about last night, helping those who can't help themselves.

Posted by a Vet -- -- permanent link

Would You Rather have John Edwards as Vice President...

...or 4 more years of this?

Posted by a Vet -- -- permanent link

Wednesday, July 28, 2004

The Winds of Change

In case you missed it last night:

You know, a while back, I met a young man named Seamus in a VFW hall in East Moline, Illinois. He was a good-looking kid, 6'2", 6'3", clear eyed, with an easy smile. He told me he'd joined the Marines and was heading to Iraq the following week.

And as I listened to him explain why he had enlisted -- the absolute faith he had in our country and its leaders, his devotion to duty and service -- I thought, this young man was all that any of us might ever hope for in a child. But then I asked myself: Are we serving Seamus as well as he's serving us?

I thought of the 900 men and women, sons and daughters, husbands and wives, friends and neighbors who won't be returning to their own hometowns. I thought of the families I had met who were struggling to get by without a loved one's full income or whose loved ones had returned with a limb missing or nerves shattered, but still lacked long-term health benefits because they were Reservists.

When we send our young men and women into harm's way, we have a solemn obligation not to fudge the numbers or shade the truth about why they are going, to care for their families while they're gone, to tend to the soldiers upon their return and to never, ever go to war without enough troops to win the war, secure the peace and earn the respect of the world.

Now, let me be clear. Let me be clear. We have real enemies in the world. These enemies must be found. They must be pursued. And they must be defeated.

Was it George Bush speaking? Donald Rumsfeld? Dick Cheney?

No, it was Illinois State Senator (D) Barack Obama, running for the U. S. Senate.

Can you get it through your heads veterans, reservists, national guard, and you all serving on active duty? The roles have switched. The Democrats understand you better now than Mr. Bush and his cohorts. The winds of change are happening, and it must be occurring to an awful lot of Republicans that the best minds for the future do not lie in their party.

BTW - you may have just caught a glimpse of the first future black president of the United States. Obama is running unopposed now in one of our largest states because the Repubs can't find anybody other than old football coaches to consider running against him.

Posted by a Vet -- -- permanent link

Tuesday, July 27, 2004

Telemarketing Target

The conversation went something like this:

Republican National Committee (RNC) rep: I’m calling to see if you are willing to support Republicans with a contribution. We noticed that you haven’t given anything to the party for a long time.

A Vet: Yes you are right. I've been an Independent for years, and I’m now a registered Democrat.

RNC rep: May I ask why you switched parties?

A Vet: How much time do you have?

RNC rep: (pause…) Well, was there a particular reason? And can we get you back?

A Vet: The answer to the second question is “no.” The answer to the first question (abridged version for blog readers) is that I am a veteran, and the Bush administration has ignored or played lip service to veterans and our military including our reserves and national guard. I’m especially concerned with this administration blowing off veterans’ health care, lack of support to disabled and homeless veterans, and the shameful misuse of our military for preemptive warfare without evidence of WMDs or ties of Al Qaeda to Iraq. Somebody in the Republican party is taking veterans’ support for granted, just like they always have, and forgetting that millions of voting veterans are involved in this election – many of whom now feel like I do.

That’s just for starters.

RNC rep: Thank you very much. Good afternoon.

A Vet: Good bye.

Posted by a Vet -- -- permanent link

Monday, July 26, 2004

Best Line of the Night from the Democratic Convention:

"Strength and wisdom are not opposing values"... Bill Clinton

Posted by a Vet -- -- permanent link

The Real Election Race Begins Now

As the Democrats nominate John Kerry this week, the face of the two campaigns will come more into focus.

Mr. Bush will continue unabated to smear Mr. Kerry. Mr. Kerry will focus on how this country can do things better under his administration.

Two questions come to mind as the real race begins:

The first is an old one, an economic one: are you better off today than you were four years ago?

Secondly, and even more to the point: is this country more divided than it was four years ago?

Mr. Bush's actions will result in more division. Mr. Kerry's will aim at bringing us more together. Both administrations will continue to fight terrorism - no matter what Rupert Murdoch and Fox news say. But Mr. Kerry will introduce other important national priorities that need to be addressed correctly - health care, education, and support of veterans, among others.

We've seen the results of Mr. Bush's strategy. I don't know about you, but the politics of divisiveness will not win my vote this year.

Posted by a Vet -- -- permanent link

Friday, July 23, 2004

Dick Cheney, Please Stay In the Race!

Reading the bio of Cheney for the last few years, you might think that you were looking at the resume of a third world dictator: war profiteering, massive conflicts of interest, reckless engagement in premptive warfare etc. etc. It just keeps getting better and better...

Yet another controversy has flared up around the Halliburton oil services company of which Vice-President Dick Cheney used to be chief executive - this time over whether during the 1995-2000 Cheney era it violated US law by doing business directly with Iran.

The US Treasury has been probing the affair, which centres on a Dubai-based subsidiary of Halliburton and its work at Iranian oilfields, ever since allegations first surfaced in 2001. But this week it emerged that the group is under investigation by federal prosecutors in its home town of Houston. A grand jury has also subpoenaed various documents covering its Iranian operations, a sign that some evidence has surfaced indicating the company knowingly violated the sanctions.

I've changed my mind: Please stay in the race, Mr. Vice President, please...

Posted by a Vet -- -- permanent link

Thursday, July 22, 2004

"Unmitigated Arrogance"

This president doesn't get it. He thinks the swagger of his talk and body language attracts others to him. He doesn't consider himself answerable to We the People. It's time We the People let him know that he is answerable - at the ballot box.

"We The People," says our living Constitution. However, reading a passage from Bob Woodward's recent book, Senator Robert Byrd quotes President George Bush as saying, "'I do not need to explain why I say things. That's the interesting thing about being the president. Maybe somebody needs to explain to me why they say something, but I don't feel like I owe anybody an explanation.'" Byrd bristles. "Such hubris," he said. "Unmitigated arrogance. He's talking about the people here. That one little paragraph explains better than I could ever explain the contempt this man shows for the sovereignty of the people of this country." Again, Byrd is correct: Our Nation's freedom is based upon the reason of "We The People," not the hubris of "I the President."

(Courtesy of Veterans for Common Sense)

Posted by a Vet -- -- permanent link

Wednesday, July 21, 2004

Karl Rove Tactics at Work...

The Sandy Berger non-event is another misdirection to take the heat off of the president for the Valerie Plame outting. Don't be fooled. If this is the best they can do prior to the Dems convention next week, they are really in trouble.

Posted by a Vet -- -- permanent link

Tuesday, July 20, 2004

Desperation Takes Over at the Pentagon: Imagine Getting This Phone Call if You Were 68 Years Old...

Caller: Dr. Wicks?
Wicks: Yes?

Caller: Dr. Wicks, your country needs you now.
Wicks: What do you mean, I'm retired now.

Caller: Dr. Wicks, you have been recalled to active duty.
Wicks: There must be some mistake, I'm over 68 years old!

Caller: Pack your bags Dr Wicks. You are going to Iraq...

Posted by a Vet -- -- permanent link

Democracy by Assassination

This president has assured us that Democracy will prevail in Iraq and that the war was justified. We now have a better idea of what that "democracy' will look like.

If Iyad Allawi, Iraq's new prime minister, is Mr. Bush's reason that nearly 1,000 of our young men and women have died, then it should be easier for you to understand why this war has been a disaster in so many ways.

The Herald reported that two independent witnesses alleged Dr Allawi executed up to six suspected insurgents at the Al-Amiriyah police station in Baghdad only days before Washington handed control of the country to him and his interim government.

According to the accounts, which were denied by Dr Allawi's office, there were about a dozen police officers and a contingent of Americans who witnessed the killings.

That's right - Allawi is apparently a part time assassin. But don't let that bother you. Democracy is coming to Iraq.

Posted by a Vet -- -- permanent link

Monday, July 19, 2004

Once Again Vets, It's Time to Check Out Who is Really Supporting You

The Disabled American Veterans (DAV) commends Senator Thomas A. Daschle (D - S. D.) for sponsoring an amendment to the Defense Authorization Act that would guarantee dependable, stable, and sustained funding for veterans health care.

That's right - Tom Daschle, a Democrat, again is leading the charge to improve veterans' health care. It's time to give credit where it is due, Vets. Get your heads out of the sand and look at who is really supporting you. It took decades for many senior citizens, who also voted primarily for Republicans, to realize who really cared for their interests.

Now it's time for you to do the same, veterans.

Posted by a Vet -- -- permanent link

Friday, July 16, 2004

Oh Yeah, We Are Much Safer Now...

From Tuesday's Post: We didn't find WMDs, but with the ruthless dictator gone, we are much safer now!

But, if we have another major terrorist attack on the U.S., and we need to restore order, where will our national guard forces be? Anybody thought about that one?

Oregon's Govenor Kulongoski has thought about it, and he's worried - like anyone with brains would be.

"This idea of using the Guard both on the frontlines -- as 40 percent of these (troops in Iraq) -- and then having my Guard units rotated . . . into this theater for the second and third time isn't the way to do this," said Kulongoski, whose job description includes being commander in chief of the Oregon Guard.

If the country continues to lean more heavily on citizen soldiers, he predicted, "you're going to seriously challenge the recruitment and retention of the Guard." That, in turn, could leave states less prepared to deal with wildfires, floods and other natural disasters, Kulongoski said.

The Governor is right, and he could have made his case even more strongly, but he is one of few governors that are saying anything about the fact that we can't protect ourselves well HERE anymore because of Bush adventurism.

Additionally, most people don't think about Oregon much in terms of terrorists threats, but Portland happens to have one of the largest container receiving ports on the West Coast.

But don't worry, we are much safer now...

Posted by a Vet -- -- permanent link

Thursday, July 15, 2004

Ridge Reels Under Privacy Invasion Failure

Tom I-Robot Ridge finally had to cave in to the idiocy of the proposed plan to personally invade your privacy every time you tried to fly.

Each passenger would (have been) given a color to indicate his or her potential threat level. A "red" rating would mean the passenger would not be allowed to fly; "yellow" would mean additional security at the airport; "green" would mean a trip through regular security.

But the plan collapsed "under its own weight". Translation: it was so offensive to the public, even to some of our conservative brethren, that it never had a chance.

But stand by. Remember that new x-ray machine that would reveal every physical aspect about you as you passed through airline security? I'll bet Ridge is still excited about that one.

Posted by a Vet -- -- permanent link

Wednesday, July 14, 2004

Incensed Veteran is Getting Tired of Being Called Names by Bush-Supporting "Patriots"

Thirty-five years later, after all the pontificating about “never again” has faded from memory, that same flag of false and misguided patriotism once again “proudly” waves over America. It seems that never again is here again (if it ever went away).

The true colors of the Bush "patriots" come forth. You, my fellow veterans, are being called "wimps with no backbones" if you oppose Bush. Aren't you getting a little tired of being accused of being traitors by those who could care less about veterans?

As Doug Kirk says to these name-callers: I guess it makes no difference to you that the man you support has cut and is cutting funding for the Veterans Administration which to date has forced over 250,000 veterans out of the system due to a lack of funding. At the same time, this same man is creating more veterans and more disabled veterans.

Posted by a Vet -- -- permanent link

Tuesday, July 13, 2004

I Feel Much Safer Now, Don't You?

We didn't find WMDs, but with the ruthless dictator gone, we are much safer now!

But prepare for a major terrorist attack that is intended to disrupt our democratic processes.

We didn't find WMDs, but with the ruthless dictator gone, we are much safer now!

But our military forces are so stretched because of Iraq, projections show that by early next year, 40% of our forces there will be reserves and national guard.

We didn't find WMDs, but with the ruthless dictator gone, we are much safer now!

But, our Congress was scared enough to be buffaloed into renewing the Patriot Act provisions - including watching what you check out at your local library. (Note: we used to call this Communism).

We didn't find WMDs, but with the ruthless dictator gone, we are much safer now!

But, if we have another major terrorist attack on the U.S., and we need to restore order, where will our national guard forces be? Anybody thought about that one?

We didn't find WMDs, but with the ruthless dictator gone, we are much safer now!

But, you know, we may just have to suspend elections permanently. All hail, King George the IV!

Posted by a Vet -- -- permanent link

Monday, July 12, 2004

Coup Takes Places in the U.S.

Ridiculous headline, you say. Not nearly as far-fetched as it may seem, and it may be in the news in the next 90 days.

This White House plans to stay in office no matter what you think or how you vote. Check that - you may not get the chance to vote.

For about three months, a couple of conservative screwballs in the administration have been floating the idea of suspending the November elections among their extremist brethren to see if the idea had "legs". Bush must now know that he is losing more and more voters, so creating or using a terrorist incident may be the only way he has to stay in office.

I would not be surprised, after the Demo's convention and the positive support of Edwards to the ticket, that Bush will find himself 6-8 points behind in the polls. Then after the Republican convention, standby for this attempted coup to take place. It will be the only way to "protect the country."

Posted by a Vet -- -- permanent link

After Being Away for 3 Weeks, I Notice That There are Just Two People Left on the Planet Who...

...believe that there were WMDs in Iraq: George Bush & Dick Cheney. No, scratch that - make it one: Cheney. This morning, the president, speaking at Oak Ridge, said that even if there were no WMDs, it was the right thing to do to invade Iraq because they hated us and threatened to destroy us. So, does that mean another dozen countries, who think the same way, are now on our invasion list?

By the way, the delusional vice president has about four weeks before the convention to find an excuse not to re-up. His health provides a ready means into retirement. Otherwise, even the president must be starting to feel the panic of being dragged underwater by the veep.

Posted by a Vet -- -- permanent link

Back to Blogging...

Posted by a Vet -- -- permanent link

Friday, July 09, 2004

I'm Back...

Three weeks on the road, overdue visits to relatives, and some vacation time. I'll be back in the fray next week.

Posted by a Vet -- -- permanent link

Friday, July 02, 2004

On This July 4th Weekend, We Continue to Remember the Unreported Sacrifices

As reported here several times, beginning more than six months ago, the real casualty count in Iraq, including personnel evacuated for battlefield injuries, is over 15,000. Figures from the administration put the number at around 3,000. But it's hard to keep lying forever without somebody noticing.

Almost 50 years ago a little book called How to Lie With Statistics showed how you could prove almost anything beyond a doubt, and fool almost anybody. I use the book today in teaching business classes. Browse through it at your local bookstore so you can better identify how this administration continues to lie to veterans and everyone else.

Posted by a Vet -- -- permanent link