Saturday, December 20, 2003

Mojowire for 12.20; vol. 1, no. 36

MUSIC: Intro/Hendrix, Star Spangled Banner
S9/ Supreme Beings of Leisure, Under the Gun
Exeunt/WildChild, Renegade Master

intro with hendrix star spangled banner

J. Good morning, and welcome to The Mojowire, Vol. 1, No. 36... I’m Mojo...

S. And I’m Sean, it’s Saturday, December 20, 2003, Day 993 of the Neocon Captivity, and here’s the news for the week gone-by...

J. Brought to you by Mojohaus-fine journalism, afflicting the comfortable since1988. Now headlines, from Mojohaus:

S. First this morning, we examine the Army’s stated intention of using sleep deprivation to crack the nut that *is* Saddam Hussein. But don’t worry though, we are being told that it is *not* torture...

J. Next, we pick up a thread reported by the redoubtable Joshua Marshall’s Talking Points Memo regarding the what the Bush people believe is an appropriate response to graft and fraud in our Iraqi administration.

S. Then we examine two recent federal appeals courts decisions regarding the Administration’s ability to disappear people and have a fearful look into the abyss should the Bush gang decide the law no longer applies to them.

J. Then Strychnine will again join us with terrifying tales of official government secrecy and again run the thread out to its obvious and horrifying conclusion.

S. Next, we take a quick and humorous pass at the new black market industry for forged Iraqi government documents and morons who are dumb enough to buy them then publish them as proof of Saddam’s involvement in 9/11 and various other evil-doin’s.

J. Finally, we give a glance at the strange momentum of the Dean campaign and the odd synergy that seems to be making it into a greater thing than the sum of its parts, as well as the eerie symetry of having Al Gore and Joe Lieberman end up on the opposite sides of this thing

…So stand by to stand by while we get ready to pull the pin on this thing...

fade in more hendrix star spangled banner for five or six count then back out again

J. Leave it to the Brits, those eternal arbiters of all that is civilized to come up with a decent rubric for evaluating society. It was Winston Churchill who said something to the effect of, if you want to judge a society, look at the way it treats its prisoners.

Well, it looks like we’re doing pretty good then. It is good to know that after all of Strychnine’s concerns about the U.S. engaging in torture of detainees, it has all been needless worry. We know this because the government assures us that as far as a bad guy like Saddam Hussein is concerned, we will get everything we need from him with the simple use of sleep deprivation.

And this is okay, because we are assured by our government that sleep deprivation is *not* really! Torture is something else entirely, we are just going to keep Saddam up past his bedtime for a while talking, according to Administration officials in the wake of the capture.

On NPR last week, Ruhel Gerecht, with the American Enterprise Insitutute and Mideast Specialist for the CIA argued that we were really talking about shades of gray when it came to torture. No, no, we use “aggressive tactics.”

You see, according to him, as well as many others in the current administration, the real root of the issue is in the United Nation’s use of the phrase “*severe* pain and suffering.” Let’s review the actual rules for a moment:

Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment, Adopted and opened for signature, ratification and accession by General Assembly resolution 39/46 of 10 December 1984, PART I, Article 1-- For the purposes of this Convention, the term “torture” means any act by which severe pain or suffering, whether physical or mental, is intentionally inflicted on a person for such purposes as obtaining from him or a third person information or a confession, punishing him for an act he or a third person has committed or is suspected of having committed, or intimidating or coercing him or a third person, or for any reason based on discrimination of any kind, when such pain or suffering is inflicted by or at the instigation of or with the consent or acquiescence of a public official or other person acting in an official capacity...

So what do you think; this doesn’t much sound like a big deal when it comes to sleep deprivation does it? Well, now that we know the rules, let’s take a quick look at the physical and mental effects of sleep deprivation.

What exactly does this charming little exercise do to the human body and mind? Well, for starters, at about 48 hours, someone without sleep is going to start experiencing a detirorating mental condition that will resemble delusional schizophrenia, replete with hallucinations. This condition will get worse as time goes on.

Physically, there are headaches, there is nausea, irritation of the eyes and a delightful little condition known as hyperalgesia, a condition where the subject becomes hyper sensitive to pain. In other words, what might have been innocuous contact before, becomes searing agony.

And just so we know what we are talking about here, when Army officials talk about sleep deprivation, they are not talking about having a guy in the room who gently shakes Saddam awake every time it looks like he’s nodding off.

S. Amensty International published a report last year that details the tactics used to keep people awake as part of “stress and duress” interrogation. This includes the practice of having the subject stay in a kneeling position while being blasted by strobe lights and loud, harsh music.

As an aside, another guaranteed effect of prolonged sleep deprivation is death. However, we are not sure of when exactly it occurs because human experiments in the extremes of sleep deprivation are considered to be inhumane and unethical.

It should also be noted that according to Amnesty International, Britain used to use sleep deprivation to coerce confessions from people in Northern Ireland. This was effective, because they didn’t care about getting to the truth of a particular subject’s innocence or guilt, they simply wanted their suspect to confess, and sleep deprivation was a good way to do it without leaving a lot of embarassing bruises or scars on the body.

Britain stopped after a European court in 1982 found they violated human rights law and Israel did likewise in 1999 when its supreme court banned the practice except in extreme situations.

You see, that’s the punch line... Sleep deprivation doesn’t produce good intel. Cognition suffers at an exponential rate, the memory becomes malleable and reality blurs as psycho-neurotic effects and hypnogogic halluciniations take over.

So it would appear that by using sleep deprivation on Saddam, we don’t really care about the Weapons of Mass Destruction, we just want him to be pliable, we want him to just confess.

And at the end of the day, our concern is that doing this to a Saddam Hussein is perhaps another way of making these sorts of things palatable for those who are *not* Saddam Hussein. If it’s not torture, then it why not use a proven technique for domestic law enforcement?

That is always the test for our nation. If we can refrain from torturing a Saddam Hussein, then it should be a walk in the park to make sure that standard applies to the rest of us. But if we, as a civil society and nation-state, give in to the temptation to use torture, an easy and effective method not only of interrogation but of maintaining a sense of fear and compliance in society at large, then we have betrayed everything this country was founded on. There would be no difference at that point between Saddam Hussein and George Bush, except that one of them looks better in funny hats.

What would Churchill say?

J. So just imagine... what would you do if you were President and found out that a contractor for the U.S. Government had beat you for at least $60 million. We imagine that you would want a) an accounting and b) a payback.

Well, what do you imagine the Bush Administration’s response was to discovering that Halliburton, the company that Vice President Dick -- May I call you *Dick*, Mr. Vice President? -- Cheney used to run, has potentially overcharged the U.S. more than $60 million for their Iraqi reconstruction work.

Now, of course we’re not talking abou the pious pronouncements of our Maximum Leader: “If Halliburton’s overcharged, they need to pay up. We’re going to watch, we’re going to make sure that as we spend the money in Iraq that it’s spent well and spent wisely.”

No, we are talking about the fact that making sure the money is being spent wisely is the one thing that, by*law* will *not* be happening. You see, when a Bush Administration officials learn of fraud in contractual dealings of the U.S. in Iraq, they simply make audits illegal -- problem solved!

The Congress wanted to prevent the kind of grifting that is apparently happening when they created an office of Inspector General at the Coalitiion Provisional Authority.

So, of course, the logical thing for the President to do would be to order Deputy Defense Secretary, and Neocon Centerfold Paul Wolfowitz, in enacting the Congressional intent to have an inspectorate, to gut the provision head to tail and prevent their nosey poking around in stuff what don’t have nothin’ to do with ‘em.

From Talking Points Memo: “In his statement, upon approving the act, the president directed that, in exercising these authorities and responsibilities, the IG/CPA shall refrain from initiating, carrying out, or completing an audit or investigation, or from issuing a subpoena, which requires access to sensitive operation plans, intelligence matters, counterintelligence matters, ongoing criminal investigations by other administration units of the [Defense Department] related to national security, or other matters the disclosure of which would constitute a serious threat to national security.”

Of course, it is all in the name of National Security. Because naturally, if the IG was poking around in matters of sensitive classified activity, they would naturally be refrained by pre-existing laws from publicizing their results and there would be a process in place for the audits results to find their secret little ways to those who would need to know in the Pentagon and Congress. But doing that would still provide eventual embarassment to someone, so instead, we will just do away with anything resembling accountability and transparency in government.

So let me get this straight... Tommy Chong is doing nine months in the Federal Penn for smoking dope, but Halliburton lifts $60 mil from the federal treasury and they are asked if they would like to go back for seconds because the government is now officially prohibited from interrupting their theft...

S. But you know, there is another troubling aspect to this, according to Marshall, and we agree with him. You know, it would take a minimum amount of effort on the part of a major news organization like a New York Times or a Washington Post to blow the lid off this sham.

All it would take would be for some enterprising young reporter who is on the beat to get out there and get a hold of the December 3 memo by Wolfowitz which set up the IG with the rules that prevent any actual inspecting by inspectors.

Come on, this isn’t that tough, that’s a public record, it’s out there, come on you guys, get that thing, do some freaking reporting, this is getting embarassing.

We know that not working for Mojohaus, your critical thinking and investigative prowess might not be completely up to speed, but this is really not that difficult. Why isn’t the national media shouting about this one from the rooftops, this is a no-freeking-brainer.

Part of the problem, we are sure, is that this kind of reporting takes more than just a phone call or two and recapitulation of some press-releases. This is not a ding on American journalists, it is a ding on their publishers and owners.

The fact is that this kind of reporting takes resources, even something as basic and simple as this, and it is not the kind of reporting that is in vogue with the bean-counters who run American newspapers these days, and as a result, a story that would have had a rogue chief executive and his winged monkeys in the Pentagon taken out for a walk 15 or 20 years ago, has become simply passe.

And because of that, it is not generating the kind of heat that is necessary to spark a Congressional chain reaction. Much like self-generating nuclear reactions, Congress needs an initial heat source to start splitting the political atoms that lead to impeachment hearings.

The worst part is that the enemies of the Republic, namely those who current infest our capital, know this, and are starting to act like they have nothing to fear from the press, the other branches of government and least of all the electorate, with the exception of those brave few who read blogs or huddle in their basement around the illegal shortwave radio to hear the Mojowire transmission.

So, if you are listening, it is up to you. Call or write your local newspaper and ask why they aren’t carrying stories about this, write your Congressional representative or Senator, and demand that the executive branch start actually governing, instead of merely dictating.

Is it time to vote yet?

J. The biggest, scariest red flag that the Bush Administration raised in the past three years has been their complete disregard for the fourth, fifth and sixth amendments to the U.S. Consititution. Remember, in the name of Fatherland Security, the administration can declare you an enemy combatant and whisk you away to the Island of Misfit Toys for an all expense paid, torture filled vacation at sunny Camp X-ray without any counsel, phone call, trial or nuthin’.

At first, they swore up and down that it would not happen to citizens, and then the first thing they did was apply it to a couple of citizens.

Now, things have turned both brighter and darker at the same time, when on the same day the Second and Ninth circuit courts of appeal ruled that detaining people without any recourse to law is an abuse of Presidential power and as such can not stand.

In the case of the Second Circuit, they ruled on the case of Jose Padilla, the Chicago-born Dirty Bomb suspect, who has been held incommunicado for the last 18 months. The Second, with a reputation for middle of the road conservatism, ruled in no uncertain terms that the only Congress has the authority to create those kinds of sweeping changes in our law.

According to the court: “Presidential authority does not exist in a vacuum and this case involves not whether those responsibilities should be aggressively pursued, but whether the President is obligated in the circumstances presented here to share them with Congress.”

This was made pretty clear in 1971, to prevent a recurrence of the Japanese Internment, Congress passed the Non-Detention Act. It says: “No citizen shall be imprisoned or otherwise detained by the United States except pursuant to an Act of Congress.” The appeals court said that law “prohibits all detentions of citizens … by the president during war and other times of national crisis.”

In the case of the Ninth Circuit, though, the court ruled on the general concept of widespread detentions of anyone by the government without so much as a by-your-leave from any court. The Ninth ruled that even though the people being held were in Cuba, they were on American property, and therefore subject to American rule of law. So now the Ninth has ruled that the detainees must be given access to legal counsel and a chance to make a case for their freedom through the courts.

Although the justices of the Ninth did not say when the detainees had to be given their days in court, the Second ordered Padilla to be remanded out of military custody within 30 days. In both of these cases, there was not much wiggle room, and the legal issues are sharp, well defined and of critical importance to the future of our country.

S. And therein lies one of the scary things about these decisions. These decisions *will* go to the Supreme Court. The writs of certiaori practically write themselves. These hit all the major points the Supremes look for in deciding to hear a case, a novel point of law, conflicting points of law and a sweeping socio-legal importance.

Moreover, it is likely that in at least one, if not both, the Supremes will be rule in favor of civil liberties, probably 5-4 or 6-3 with Sandra Day O’Connor and Anthony Kennedy being specific swing votes.

So imagine this little panic-laden scenario. The Supreme Court upholds the Second and/or the Ninth, and the administration tells them to go pound sand, no Al-Qaeda loving, anti-American, pansies are going to tell George Bush and the Superfriends how to protect a country.

It would be like the “you can’t handle the truth scene” from the end of “A Few Good Men” except in this case, Jack Nicholson then pimp-slaps Tom Cruise, seizes an M-16 from a Marine guard and declares himself King of the Navy Yard.

Now that would suck, Beavis...

And more than just sucking in a theatrical sense, it would clearly leave us in a horrible consitutional crisis. The executive branch decides it is no longer subject to the rulings of legitimate judicial authority.

And then?

...Just take a moment and look into the abyss... What happens then? Where are we? That’s when the abyss looks back, and we are truly humped!

Normally, this kind of morbid and creepifyin’ thinking usually catches up with us after a night of weird booze with names in foreign lanugages that taste like old socks. We have ourselves a good scare, like goin’ to a monster movie, and then wake up the next morning and in the full light of day tell ourselves that this could never happen.

But then there is the small problem that we are talking about the Bush Administration. These people are not exactly known for their law abidingness. It was just the other day that Richard Perle got his rhetorical ass handed to him by Joshua Marshall at a neocon panel discussion, but nevertheless made the astute observations that a) all who oppose them are anti-American, b) their politics know only expedience and pragmatism and c) they are just getting started.

And these are the people who are now running the show, so when something this momentus comes up, the temptation is to make the leap and look at where these things might go. And with our contemplations, we see that it could end up badly for all, and we mean *all* involved.

And now the music is telling me that we have an incoming transmission from the redoubtable Dr. S9…

J. That’s right. It is time once again for our regular contributor Dr. Strychnine; having come down the well on one of his rare visits planetside, he joins here in the venerable mojohaus luxury studios this morning…take it away S9…
Mojowire for 12.20

S9 Greetings once again fellow breakabouts and highmovers. It's been a wicked week for conspiracy theory, hasn't it? We know. Here on S9 station, we have an entire deck of the command torus dedicated to tracking every last moonbat conspiracy theory we catch moving across the world political landscape. We keep an eye on them for the same reason we watch for rogue comets and asteroids— you never know when one will fly out of nowhere and wreck everything. There are a lot of objects to track.

It's only going to get worse, you know. The fire of conspiracy theory is fueled by the heavy growth of official secrecy that the Bush administration has deliberately planted and lovingly tended for the
last three years. The Clinton administration was also fairly excessive about keeping secrets, but the Bush people are making them look like pikers.

Let's start with the news this week that the Bush administration has persuaded the U.S. Supreme Court to review the three-- count them-- *three* lower court decisions that have all refused to accept the administration claim that the documents produced by the Cheney energy task force should be protected from disclosure be executive privilege. The administration swears that it really has nothing specifically damning to hide— it just wants to establish a precedent.

Meanwhile, tinfoil hat conspiracy theorists on the web and off the grid are crazy with speculation about what the Vice President is really trying to hide by keeping those documents secret. But what if the thing the White House is trying to hide is precisely what they say they are trying to hide? Dick Cheney says he thinks every document produced in the executive branch ought to be regarded as an official secret unless it is explicitly marked For Immediate Public Release.

Let's take him at his word. After all, this administration spikes Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests as default policy. It's on record as considering it official policy to resist FOIA requests unless the information requested is explicitly something the government wants publicized in the first place.

Civil libertarian organizations have been trying for the better part of two years to pry information out of the government about how it has used the USA PATRIOT Act and other similar laws passed in the grief over 9/11— not to mention what it knows about the real benefits that have been achieved with the new powers. They have gotten not much more than John Ashcroft's personal opinion that civil libertarians are only providing aid and comfort to America's enemies by asking such questions.

Let's recall what John Ashcroft said in Congressional hearing December 2001, “To those who scare peace-loving people with phantoms of lost liberty, my message is this: your tactics only aid terrorists, for they erode our national unity and diminish our resolve. They give ammunition to America's enemies, and pause to America's friends.”

We may want to ask ourselves whether we have a problem with excessive official secrecy now. National security often depends on keeping sensitive official information secret, but there are very real and serious risks in excessive secrecy. Excessive official secrecy is actually *bad* for national security because it ultimately results in a hyperinflation of the importance of counter-intelligence operations.

Charged with protecting such a large volume of information from compromise, the secret police require enhanced powers of surveillance, detention and interrogation to defend against spies. Inevitably, the means and methods of counter-intelligence become official secrets, which themselves require aggressive defense against unauthorized public disclosure. Think about the lengths the secret police must go to prevent the public from learning about exactly how reliable is the information produced by "stress and duress" techniques.

And now the firewall in the FBI between criminal investigations and counter-intelligence is dismantled. You know what this means? It means we now have our very own American version of the CHEKA, which was Felix Dzerzhinsky's All Russian Extraordinary Commission for Combatting Counterrevolution and Sabotage, and which begat the GPU and the NKVD, and which ultimately evolved into the KGB under Stalin. It was the CHEKA that started with the concentration camps for the traitors and enemy combatants.

So yes— it's been a bad week for conspiracy theories. Maybe the civil libertarians would be able to see the forest of unchecked state security apparatus better if it weren't for all the damned individual
trees of excessive secrecy blocking the view.
Cue James music for exit
As they always said in that excellent British TV program, The Prisoner, "be seeing you..."

J. Apparently, according to a Newsweek article, there is a growth industry in Iraq in forging official documents from Saddam’s regime and selling them to American and British rubes..errr, I mean journalists.

The Daily Telegraph in the UK got some documents that suggested that the 9/11 gang got together with some Iraqi intel types and documented a relationship between the Evil Doctor Saddam and Osama and the Legion of Doom.

This was used by many to prop up the fantasy held closely by Dick Cheney and Rummy and others that Iraq was part of 9/11, and it started to show up in some of the usual suspects’ work, such as the damaged man-droid that has replaced William Safire.

And before anyone could begin to question the dubious nature of the documents, they somehow managed to obtain the status of sacred gospels among the neocons, who apparently will believe and buy anything as long as the wrapping at least looks enough like what they think it’s supposed to look like.

The reporters who initially pimped the documents in question should have been tipped off by their whole Unified Field Theory of Iraq. Basically, Al Qaeda agents landed in Baghdad in a flying saucer to declare undying allegiance to Saddam and give him a year’s supply of Yellowcake, The Nigerian Treat, and then loaded up a hold full of Quantum Torpedo's, Shrink Rays, Anthrax, itch powder, counterfeit Pokemons, nuclear warheads disguised as Jesus Bobbleheads, ringwraiths, and other assorted items from Crazy Saddams WMD and stereo store. They then flew to Osama's orbiting death station to issue orders to the liberal media and anti-war activists.

This is perfectly in line with the Hadley story in the Weekly Standard, which declared all the Administrations theories about WMD and Al Queda verified because Doug Feith was forced to turn over the same wrong information to the Senate he had been pimping to the President.

Cut and pasting makes everything shiny and new!! And it’s easy apparently...there are dark alleys in Fallujah where shrouded men with copy machines are cranking out page after page of “Sooper-Sekret Plans for the Iraqi Devil Robot” and then hide in deep shadows selling the goathide bound portfolios for a handful of American scratch to earnest young FoxNews journalists who think they’re John LeCarre characters out of “A Perfect Spy.”

S. There is a desperation in Pro Bush circles to conjure up tangible proof that the Administration isn't stupid and liars all in the same magical building. I really don't know why. They seem perfectly content in denying they ever meant what they were saying 7 months ago, and that if we just sniff the deadly fumes from the New York Times Print edition, the truth will become clear.

You see, the war was all about human rights, the media just twisted it around to be about WMD. Damn the liberal media! Besides, there must be Al Queda operatives and Doomsday weapons in Iraq, Rummy said so.

Just apalling!

And as an aside, are Republican women still sliding off their chairs when they hear the existential poetry of Don Rumsfeld these days? Or do they get that creepy feeling they used to get when 60 year old men with whiskey breath used to roll up on them in their cherry red Caddillacs and offer them car rides and candy when they were 14? Just checking...

Naturally, certain media sources will offer these documents like they were just handed from elite Iraqi's in Saddams government in a Baghdad parking garage with flickering lights. I wonder if they manage to get the traces of white-out off the documents before they sell them to Standard and Fox reporters.

And sure, as long as the documents say what you want them to say, why would any rising young truth seeker look too closely at the paperwork. What the hell, they knew it all along anyway, remember?

Personally, I am greatly amused by this new market. I think millions of Rupert's money should be spent buying forged documents from grifting Iraqi's that confirm everything they suspected but could not prove.

Remember, like the Mojohaus covert action consultant and special operations editor (who’s name cannot be revealed here) says, the paperwork is whatever it says it is.

I bet there are Iraqi's cooking up documents of Clintons secret love affair with Saddam, Rosalyn Carter’s secret Saddam love child, and of course, the murder of Vince Foster.

How do I get in on this gravy train?

J. So how’s this for a Hollywood pitch meeting...A Democratic presidential candidate is about to make a turning point in history, so the Republican Party sends an evil political terminator back through time to take him out, but then forces of good send back another similar robot programmed only to protect him...

Been done? Yeah, and it’s being done right now in the weird dichotomy of Al Gore and Joe Lieberman and their relationships to former Vermont Gov. Howard Dean.

So do you think Al Gore showed up in a black leather jacket, dark glasses, riding a Harley and saying “Gov. Dean, you must survive, you will lead the resistance once the GOP Machines take over...”

Yeah, hackneyed and done already... But there is a weird symetry that’s hard to escape concerning how the Dean campaign is shaking out. On one side, you have Al Gore speaking and campaigining for him, sounding like he should have done for himself four years ago, and on the other, you have this dried-out beetle-carcass of Joe Lieberman who hasn’t passed an honest word through his piehole in the last several weeks.

Through it all, the Dean campaign manages to gamely move on, leaving the others vying for the spot of “The Anti-Dean.” The Doctor’s foreign policy address last week, which, by the way, left a lot to be desired, still left the rest of the field scratching their heads and spinning horrible tales of treachery.

In the meantime, the GOP’s machine is gripping so hard they can barely function in public. They actually had to thaw out G. Gordon Liddy and trot him out onto Crossfire with Robert Novak to get the appropriate level of lies, bitterness and sarcastic invective that could be broadcast on regular cable during the daytime.

Hell, even Al From of the Democratic Leadership Council has been able to read the writing on the wall, it sounds like; when he spoke last week, From was notably understated in his criticisms of Dean.

This thing is now Dean’s to lose. He has the money, he has the popular support and he is gaining the respectability of a frontrunner. The endorsement just makes a concrete reality of that, although it has been growing in perception for weeks.

It appears to many that Dean is the real thing for the party, galvanizing the liberal base while maintaining a moderate enough posture that he can have broad-based support with a campaign that knows how to do what it takes, apparently, although no one will really be able to judge that for sure until people actually start voting here in a few weeks.

S. It’s in this context that this contest between the former running mates is seen. Gore, the candidate as he should have been, versus Lieberman, the candidate how he really is when not marginalized by a moderate.

And we *still* think that Joe Lieberman needs to just come out of the closet and change what side of aisle he sits on ... it’s not like we don’t know.

These are different parts of the party, an establishment, which is finding itself more and more marginalized from its constituents, and a revitalized left, which is finding a voice, even as its candidate is taking a more moderate tone than some now might like.

But even so, there are a lot of people looking at the Gore endorsement and thinking, “you know what, I’m tired of losing. Dean is a pretty good guy, and the Gore endorsement just makes him that much more of a front runner; a signal perhaps that a larger amount of people are putting aside minor differences and uniting under a common cause. At the end of the day, I can live with my differences with him and he will be a damn sight better than Bush.”

That was the essential problem with the Gore candidacy four years ago. We didn’t see an appreciable difference between the two candidates. In retrospect, perhaps that was a mistake, but Gore didn’t give us much to go on in that regard.

Now, we have something we can hang on to, and Gore has provided a modicum of protection against the depridations of the T-1000 Liebermanator, even though he is the superior model in many ways to the older unit.

But if there is a hope of defeating the dreaded Bush juggernaut in 2004, it is going to have to be a candidate who is not afraid of stepping out and giving as good as he gets, and so far, the only candidate who looks like that is Dean.

And if he can get a better run at mainstream acceptance from a Gore endorsement, while sending Lieberman packing at the same time, then so much the better. We are in this one for the Republic boys and girls. Bush is giving no quarter, and we need someone who will respond in kind. Who is going to do that with any kind of realistic chance of getting elected? Gephardt? Edwards? Sharpton?

No, we are at the point of no return on this one. Democracy is about choosing, and this year there is a real choice, because we won’t have an America to vote on if there is another four years of neocon captivity.

J. So our patriotic thought for the day: Equal protection under the law means the Terrorists win... , or as John Ashcroft says... “The Constitution? I’m melting....I’m melting...”


S. And that’s all for this week, tune in again soon for another exciting installment, unless, of course, we are declared enemies of the state.

And remember, you can now email the Mojowire at, that’s

J. And now you can check out the Mojowire online at; you can read the entire archive.

This has been the Mojowire, brought to you by Mojohaus...Mojohaus-fine journalism, afflicting the comfortable since 1988, and produced by our super funky fly producer Mike Payne and the Darkling Eclectica, here on KUCI, 88.9...

Saturday, December 06, 2003

Mojowire for 12.06; vol. 1, no. 35

MUSIC: Intro/Hendrix, Star Spangled Banner
S9/ Supreme Beings of Leisure, Under the Gun
Exeunt/WildChild, Renegade Master

intro with hendrix star spangled banner

J. Good morning, and welcome to The Mojowire, Vol. 1, No. 35... I’m Mojo...

S. And I’m Sean, it’s Saturday, December 06, 2003, Day 979 of the Neocon Captivity, and here’s the news for the week gone-by...

J. Brought to you by Mojohaus-fine journalism, afflicting the comfortable since 1988. Now headlines, from Mojohaus:

S. First this morning, we crack open the brain pans of the Neocon clowns currently running the circus to take a look at the evangelical theology that continues to make them believe that the war in Iraq was a necessary activity.

J. Next, we pick up where Strychnine left off last week, looking at the official myth creation machine of the Bush presidency, and some of the horrible explanations used by West Wing cronies in expaining how lying to us about our President actually reveals “deeper truths...” No Kidding!

S. Then we pick up on the issue of the steel tarrifs and strange falling it out may lead to between Bush and some of his most ardent Heartland supporters. Namely because reality seems like it might finally be intruding on the President’s policy and speechwriting team.

J. Then Strychnine is going to launch the horror at us this morning from his secret rail gun base on the dark side of the moon reagarding the issue of “eliminationist” rhetotric that has been infecting our nation lately, and reads for us the writing on the wall.

S. Then we take a look at the forces from the right that are starting to array themselves against Howard Dean, and take a quick peak behind the curtain to read the entrails and get a good laugh from their Wile E. Coyote like machinations.

J. …So stand by to stand by while we get ready to kick this pig...

fade in more hendrix star spangled banner for five or six count then back out again

J. Over the course of the last several months, a story has begun to emerge, that reveals how the White House could be so incredibly demented in its Iraq policies. One of the most consistent questions: how is it possible for the Secretary of Defense, and other top officials, to so assertively proclaim the existence of WMD’s, the promise of a peaceful transition and the embracing of Americans by the Iraqi's once they were freed by Saddam Hussien?

This question comes into focus, particularly as the doubts expressed by CIA and other agencies have been revealed. The New Yorker sheds a little light on this subject. Apparently, much of the dreck spewed forth from the mouth of Rummy and the Neoettes came directly from the Iraqi National Congress and its august leader, Ahmand Chalabi.

The INC is a group of Iraqi exiles who have lobbied Washington Conservatives for years to oust Saddam. CIA and State officials, who were familiar with the INC and Mr Chalabi from previous Administrations, were deeply suspicious of their information and motives. Here are a few choice pieces from the New Yorker:

“In the Pentagon's scenario, the responsibility of managing Iraq would quickly be handed off to exiles, led by Chalabi-allowing the U.S. to retain control without having to commit more troops and invest a lot of money. ‘There was a desire by some in the Vice-President's office and the Pentagon to cut and run from Iraq and leave it up to Chalabi to run it,’ a senior Administration official told me. ‘The idea was to put our guy in there and he was going to be so compliant that he'd recognize Israel and all the problems in the Middle East would be solved. He would be our man in Baghdad. Everything would be hunky-dory.’ The planning was so wishful that it bordered on self-deception. ‘It isn't pragmatism, it isn't Realpolitik, it isn't conservatism, it isn't liberalism,’ the official said. ‘It's theology.’”

Ahhh..the office of the Vice President again...and yes...theology is exactly the correct word. This administration is a theocracy. This explains exactly how every intelligence agency raised serious doubts about the assertions of Saddams vast WMD cache and programs.

And yet the White House proclaimed their absolute certainty that Saddam possessed enough Anthrax, Nerve Gas, and Nukes to infect, choke and incinerate every man, woman and child in America in the blink of an eye. They simply turned to a gang of foreign exiles with a stake in the overthrow of Saddam led by a convicted Felon.

Lets consider this for a moment. The Defense Secretary and his deputies, the National Security Advisor, and the Vice President, who preside over and command the resources of dozens of agencies throughout the government who provide intelligence and expertise on these issues, refused to consider their views, and instead turned to a group of exiles who had a reputation for lying and deceit.

The question just leaps out at you, doesn't it? Why would the do that? The answer presents itself just as easily. Because their views on Iraq and foreing policy in general have nothing to do with facts, either facts presented to them by the spooks at Langly or the treasonous eggheads at State.

Their views are theological. Handed down to them by a pantheon of Neo Conservative thinkers from Irving Kristol to Leo Strauss, with a dash of Leon Trotsky. Anything that contradicts this Holy Writ is heresy. Heresy that should squashed by the Conservative Media Inquisition, chaired by the drooling psych patients at the Journal Opinion page, and the holy monks at the American Enterprise Institute.

S. No one expects the NeoCon Inquistion!..But wait..Here is one of our favorite parts of this article...

“To this day, key policymakers maintain their faith in the Pentagon's original plan. According to a senior Administration official, not long ago in Washington, Cheney approached Powell, stuck a finger in his chest, and said, ‘If you hadn't opposed the I.N.C. and Chalabi, we wouldn't be in this mess.’ But one Pentagon official acknowledged that his agency was responsible for the debacle. ‘It was ridiculous,’ he said. ‘Rummy and Wolfowitz and Feith did not believe the U.S. would need to run post-conflict Iraq. Their plan was to turn it over to these exiles very quickly and let them deal with the messes that came up. Garner was a fall guy for a bad strategy. He was doing exactly what Rummy wanted him to do. It was the strategy that failed.’”

First off, just reflect on the scene for a moment. Dick Cheney, who by his own admission was too busy with other priorities, to serve his country in Vietnam and risk his conservative flag waving behind, poking Vietnam Veteran and lifelong soldier Colin Powel in the chest.

It's easy to talk trash like this when you are the Vice President and the Constitutional superior of Powell. So if Powell slaps him like a little biaaatch, does he run crying to the President with the big read mark on the side of head in the shape of Powell's hand?...

I find these statements to be a key indicator of the enormous disconnect in the Administration. This “if only those commies at Foggy bottom had allowed us to install Chalabi, none of this would have happened” is just awe inspiring. It betrays a level of denial so powerful that it rivals that of Hitler in the last days of the War where he spoke openly of victory as the allies closed in.

Little Billy Safire echoes this sentiment in a column from a weeks ago where he openly claimed that the INC and Ahmad Chalabi should have been given control of Post War Iraq. What the hell are they talking about for God's Sake? These guys have done nothing in Iraq to justify any faith in them. They have no constituency, no support. If they do, where is it, and why isn't it protecting American lives in Iraq? Or taking the casualties?

Nothing the INC and Chalabi has done even remotely supports the faith placed in them. In fact, anyone who bought into their open manipulation should be send to the island of Misfit Neo-Cons. Can anyone name a single thing said by Chalabi and his posse at the INC that turned out to be accurate. No WMD's, immediate looting after Saddam's fall, a dangerous insurgency, These people have absolutely no credibility.

Is there a certain Irony in Straussians being so openly grifted? I thought the whole point of that philosophy was to be more sophisticated about which tail wags which dog? Why even have a CIA or NSC if you already know all the answers?

Acceptance of the colossal screwup on thepart of the Cheney/Rummy Superfriends by basing their WMD arguments on the exiles, and their subsequent plans to hand over control of Iraq to Chalabi and the INC would require them to do the unthinkable, own up to a mistake. They seriously don't think they were wrong. No matter how things escalate to disaster in Iraq, it will always be somebody else's screwup...Powell...The media...those godless commies at Foggy Bottom..

This kind of belief, in the face of overwhelming facts to the contrary, is theology. It's a secular theology grafted together from a deranged cold war philosopher, an old communist revolutionary, and the think tank druids at AEI. The last time we saw this kind of secular belief system, the dance craze sweeping the nation was goose stepping, and that nutty Hitler kid was getting into all kinds of trouble murdering millions and embroiling the whole world in a war.

And before we get a little light headed because of the Nazi references, we're not suggesting these kinds are the dangerous anti-semites who perpetuated the holocaust. But the methods of propaganda, the belief in their own superiority, bear an analogous resemblance to those crazy German Kids of the thirties.

It just makes your head swim...

J. If you watch the USA or TNT cable network at all, you have undoubtedly seen those “What is drama” commercials, with stars giving you their unctious artisté’s take on what makes good drama.

Well, they are going to have to make one of those for Maximum Leader and his gang of professional communicators, because they have taken the whole “art-imitates-life” art form to a whole new level of drama.

As made for TV drama news goes, the President’s secret trip to Thanksgiving lunch with his boys in khaki was a pretty good feat. And of course, Strychnine was quite correct in looking forward to how the whole mythology would play with the media.

Perhaps our fears were a little unfounded. It’s not exactly the intellectual A-Team we’re dealing with here in the White House.

I mean on one level, you just had to know that this was going to be too good to be true for the Bush Administration. There’s no way you could get Communications Ringmaster Dan Bartlett, Press-Hack Scotty McClelland and Cult Leader Andy Card in the same room without somone turning the whole thing into an “I Love Lucy” sketch.

We now learn from the Washington Post this week that one thing we were lead to believe was nothing more than a cheap photo-op, that will probably end up trumping the whole pickle suit carrier landing. When Maximum Leader brought out that great looking heartland turkey that could have been done by our mothers, that became *the* photo, the President bringing the bird to the table to carve, say grace and tuck in with his boys.

Not so fast...according to some who were there, that was a stunt turkey that was gussied up and brought out specifically for the photos, before it was whisked away along with the President.

But wait, there’s more. (Isn’t there always...) There was a report in the making that a British Airways airliner ID Air Force One over open an unsecured radio transmission while they were in flight and relatively near one another.

For those who don’t know, when Air Force’s One or Two (that’s Dick’s ride), are in flight, they are not to be ID over open radio transmissions, because you never know when some hillbilly with a scanner and a Patriot Missle Battery out in back of the trailer will want to vote a little early.

The story here goes that the mistake was covered up with some fast thinking folks on the plane and the flight continued unimpeded, although the danger to the Maximum Leader was greatly increased, no doubt. Sure, it would have been easier to just land at the nearest airfield and catch the next armor-plated GMC Suburban Convoy back to Crawford, but our President felt it his *duty* damnit, to be with our boys on Thanksgiving and to the *devil* with the danger...

Yeah...whatever... But no sooner did this get to reporters to put in their pieces on the bravery of the President than reporters did what reporters do: they placed calls to British Airways to ask what the deal was with their pilots trying to act as forward observers for Al-Qaeda misslemen.

S. British Airways answered queries with a great big “HUH?!” They had no record of any such incident at all.

That’s okay though, when the reporters brought this to the attention of the West Wing tribe, they simply changed the legend to reflect the new understanding and said the British Airways flight contacted the ground about Air Force One and that the ground made a mistake...

No deal, British Airways is denying anything of the sort ever happened.

Think about these incidents for a moment. How pathetic is it, for instance, that the White House communications pros can’t get something as simple as a Thanksgiving photo op correct. How sad is it that with something as mindnumbingly easy and automatic as the President’s Thanksgiving PR they can’t even get over on that without gross mendacity.

We really are running out of epithets and colorful metaphors for these guys.

And then this episode with the jet. It’s like when you were nine years old and your two best friends would come over to spend the night and you would stay up past midnight talking about how cool it would be if a giant monster would rise up out of the flood control channel behind your house and be all menacing and stuff, and then you would go out and fight it and discover you had laser beam eyes and then it tried to fly away and you had to fly after it in your invisible helicopter...

Is that what it’s like in the Communciations Bullpen? Bartlett and McClellan sitting around spinning fantasies about the President?

Arguably the most horrible element of this episode though has been the excuses that have come from the usual apologists like Mary Matlin.

“This was effective, because it captured something about the president that people know is true, that he really cares about the soldiers and gets emotional when he sees them.You have to figure out how to capture the Bush we know, even if it doesn't come through in a speech situation or a press conference. He regularly rejects anything that is not him.”

Let me get this straight. The President’s Communciations team is sitting around cooking up fake stories and little dramas about the President to commuicate “deeper truths” about him to the American people. Hey, Mary, hows about just communicating the freekin’ truth. How about that for once, huh?

Seriously, THE TRUTH IS NOT IN THESE PEOPLE! They can’t even do something as generally straightforward as commuicating the President’s day-to-day activities without lies to an extent that would make Jon Lovitz SNL Liar character look like the freekin’ Oracle of Delphi.

How many times do we have to point it out? There is a level of comfort within this administration for deceit and mendacity that would have made Richard Nixon cringe. Listen, John Dean, Nixon’s special counsel and go-to guy on legal trouble regarding adminsitration misdeeds is calling these guys out.

How sick do you have to be before Watergate figures come out and call you lying scumbags with no respect for the American people or the office of the President? When the Watergate conspirators are leaning on you, maybe that’s a signal that you need a downcheck or an intervention, because that’s a trainwreck waiting to happen.

But hey, at least it would be pretty dramatic...

J. You know the really funny bit about the whole steel tarrifs thing as that it never had to get this far. It never had to become a thing. And yet, that’s the Bush political machine, stumbling along in their blind religious faith that whatever they think is right.

A little contemporary history: The greasy, smelly, cheese-eating, surrender monkeys of Old Europe had been complaining for some time about the Bush Administration’s industrial policies regarding steel.

They took it to the judges of the World Trade Oraganization who summarily pronounced billions in trade sanctions against the U.S. set to take hold this month. Remember, this was months ago.

But in typical Bush Administration fashion, the wonks, or the barely literate chimps who pass for wonks seemed to think that Old Europe was bluffing and didn’t have the stones for a round of good old fashioned political Rauchaumbeau.

Yeah...sux for them. Not only did Old Europe step up, but they turned the screws pretty tight on Bush by saying they would place their own tarrifs on product from specific swing states, such as orange juice from Florida, textiles from the Carolinas and West Virginia, states the President needs to take in the next election and that are currently in play.

They can read a political journal just as well as anyone else and they knew the quickest way to the Bush cult was to hit them in their vote wallet. They were going after the President’s blue collar support base in a way that would have made Tameny Hall proud.

This lead to some interesting political scenes the other day, such as Tom Usher, a Pennsylvania steel magnate, hosting a million-dollar fund raiser for Bush on the same day he was being forced to consider killing steel tarrifs.

And this in turn leads to the Bush political problem that could have been avoided in the first place with a little negotiation and a little forethought. Old Europe has placed our Maximum Leader in a headlock and is giving him a sweat-stained, armpit, Indian burn and now he has to go explain to his blue-collar supporters in the Heartland on why that’s a good thing.

S. This is one of the harbingers of a Bush economy. Our economy has become so dependent on debt and foreign investment that we cannot weather a little trade tiff. That’s right, all you pro-patria, rah-rah-red-white-and-blue types, suck this down: Those greasy losers in Old Europe are calling the shots.

So to all you legion of listners out there in the rust belt, guess what...your President, your Maximum Leader is going to get run by Old Europe, at least in terms of any domestic economic decision that might effect trade.

Why? Well, we’re glad you asked. When you are a massive debtor nation to the point where you had to cut interest rates to near zero to keep your currency from eating itself in a temper tantrum that would embarass a two-year-old with a Sugar-Frosted-Sugar-Corn-Bomb ceral buzz, then guess what, your bankers get to call the shots.

And now, with unemployment double in places like Wisconsin and Michigan since Bush has taken over, anything that threatens to kill even more jobs and widen the class gulf in this country will have a political effect on the President.

Look, at the end of the day, the lifting of tarrifs might well be what alcoholics call “a moment of clarity” a lucid minute when someone looked up from the punch bowl and realized that the pizza delivery guy was still standing at the door waiting for someone to pay him.

It is a demonstration of what happens when worlds collide. In this case it was domestic politics and trade policies. The President in making the obvious play in trade relations has probably caused himself immense political problems.

Remember, it’s not just steel, but it’s the coal miners and refiners who supply coal for the mills, it’s the auto and construction industry, and countless others in the Heartland depending on the President to protect their little slice of the American Dream.

I know, we keep harping on this Heartland thing, but it is the Heartland that Bush keeps playing to politically, and keeps finding himself running afoul of, first in refusing to support our troops in Iraq and now on the economy.

These people are right out of a John Mellancamp song and they will react they same way as when the Reagan years came crashing down around their domes in the late 80s.

The fact that the good economic move is the one that is the political killer is a demonstration of how back-asswards the Bush speechwriters-slash-policy people are and how politically driven this White House is in their day to day dealings.

Mojowire for 12.06 PART II

And now the music is telling me that we have an incoming transmission from the redoubtable Dr. S9…

J. That’s right. It is time once again for our regular contributor Dr. Strychnine; having come down the well on one of his rare visits planetside, he joins here in the venerable mojohaus luxury studios this morning…take it away S9…

S9 Greetings and salutations from above the Van Allen belt all ye high-movers, spacers and assorted riff-raff of the New Space Movement. This week, let's have a look in the mail spool, and marvel at the wonders it contains.

First this week, we have a letter to the editor of the Amarillo Globe News from a U.S. Navy sonar technician named Derik Jobe. It contains the following interesting sentiment about anti-war dissidents: "I call these people traitors; they call themselves protesters. They are nothing more than an infectious disease that infests the minds and hearts of the Americans we are defending." He goes on to summarize his views by saying, "There is no cure for this disease," and "Traitors should be hanged."

Second, we have a letter to the editor of the Tuscon Citizen from a medical doctor named Emory Wright. Before it was silently elided from the web edition of the newspaper, his letter included this delightful bit: "We can stop the murders of American soldiers in Iraq by those who seek revenge or to regain their power. Whenever there is an assassination or another atrocity we should proceed to the closest mosque and execute five of the first Muslims we encounter. After all this is a 'Holy War' and although such a procedure is not fair or just, it might end the horror."

Thirdly and lastly, we have an open letter from a Jesuit priest and anti-war activist in New Mexico named John Dear. It was published last week on CommonDreams.Org, and he wrote about the intimidation he received at the hands of his local National Guard unit. "Suddenly, at 7 a.m., the shouting got dramatically louder. I looked out the front window of the house where I live, next door to the church, and there they were--all 75 of them, standing yards away from my front door, in
the street right in front of my house and our church, shouting and screaming to the top of their lungs, 'Kill! Kill! Kill' Their commanders had planted them there and were egging them on."

These three letters in one week should be like ice subliming into water vapor. Matters of importance are undergoing a phase change with the heat. And if you're not feeling like the proverbial frog in a frying pan yet, then well-- maybe that's because you're a frog. The rest of
us wireheads are warm-blooded animals, and we don't wait until the water is boiling before we notice that it's getting hot in here.

Let's review the bidding up to this point, shall we?

+ Our government has launched a preventive war on another country (and threatened several others), and has invaded and occupied their territory on the flimsiest of pretexts.

+ In the name of national security, the White House now routinely lies to the press about how it conducts its business, and the press repeats those lies without hesitation or question.

+ Crony capitalism is a government protected activity, and official corruption is practiced openly in the Congress under the approving gaze of the White House, the Congressional leadership and the press.

+ Labor unions are officially regarded as a threat to the economic security of the nation.

+ The Department of Homeland Security now uses the USA PATRIOT Act in cases totally unrelated to terrorism, and money from its budget is used to monitor and interfere with peaceful and lawful political activity.

+ Certain ordinary law-abiding citizens are subject to enhanced security screening and surveillance solely for political purposes.

+ Private cadres of blackshirts (wearing a distinctly American uniform), with the financial and political assistance of the wealthy elites, are now denouncing anti-war dissidents as traitors and
advocating violence against moderate political minorities.

+ Persecuted religious minorities continue to be arrested by the secret police, held captive outside the legal system, isolated indefinitely from family, friends and legal counsel, without even being charged with a crime, much less given a speedy trial.

+ The intelligence services are using torture to extract information-- information that is then stove-piped directly to policy makers without any sanity check.

As Avedon Carol writes in her weblog from the U.K., "Do you really want to wait until they start making lampshades out of your personal friends before you finally admit something is wrong? Because this is how it starts."

Sound a bit harsh? Think again. Because, if you continue allowing the fascists to call the tunes, it will very soon suck a most terrible and mighty wind to be a free-thinking American.

She's right. This *is* how it starts. And it is well past the time to step up and take your part in stopping it.

J. The Greed Club for Men, Kudlow’s not just a member, he’s a founder.

That’s Larry Kudlow, economist and CEO of Kudlow & Co. Larry is co-host of the the primetime CNBC show “Kudlow & Cramer.” He is also a founding member of the Club for Growth.

Last week, the Club for Supply-Side Economic Voodoo, opened a salvo against Dr. Howard Dean, the current frontrunner in the Democratic nomination for President with an ad that says Dean will enact a tax policy tantamount to selling your children into slavery to Arab sex traders to fund an intergalactic federal government that will dictate every waking moment of your life.

The allegations are horrible in the extreme and the Doctor is fighting back, but that’s not really where we want to go with this, this morning. I remember a morning many, many years ago -- how many years are none of your damn business -- when I was watching a campaign commercial for a ballot initiative, I forget which one, but I remember the rhetoric was thoughtful.

I remember thinking, “That doesn’t gel with my understanding of the issue, maybe I need to rethink this, if that’s the case,” like I said, it was a long time ago, but then at the end of the commercial I noticed, for the first time the “paid for by” line.

And I remember that the paid for line was by some organization like Jarvis Tax Payers or the California Knights of the Ku Klux Klan, and that told me in that instant all I needed to know about the ad and what I needed to do in the ballot box.

Yeah, these guys are that partisan. And that’s the problem when they start taking out commercials like that. It’s difficult to hide that kind of partisan, loaded slant to the rhetoric. The Club for Growth’s latest war against *evil* leads us to the point here, the serious Republican machine is starting to worry about Dean.

Forget that their ad is a stack of mistatements and outright fibs about Dean’s record, look at the politics behind the ad.

Consider who the Club of Growth is: Milton Friedman, economist, winner of the 1976 Nobel Prize in Economics, Thomas L. Rhodes, President, National Review magazine, Bret Schundler, former mayor of Jersey City and 2001 New Jersey GOP gubernatorial nominee, Bill Simon, the slow kid who eats paste and 2002 California GOP gubernatorial nominee.

According to their own PR, the Club for Growth won 17 out of 19 of our targeted races in the Nov. 5th election last year—a record of success that exceeded even their most optimistic forecasts. They also had a string of eight key victories in contested primaries. Twelve of the thirty-three GOP House Freshmen were elected as Club for Growth creatures.

And most importantly, the Club for Growth members were the no.1 source of bundled contributions to congressional candidates in the nation during the crucial last two and a half weeks leading to the election.

So, yeah, you could say they are playahs.

S. Remember, these were the same people who tried to cut the legs out from under Ohio Senator George Voinovich last Easter.

At that time, they were billing themselves as just a homespun anti-tax group, when they took out ads trying to torment Voinovich, an old school fiscal conservative for questioning the President’s criminally stoopid tax cuts, equating his political position with treason and hatred of America.

And really all Voinovich did was say that maybe a $350 billion tax cut over 10 years instead of nearly a trillion bucks was a better idea, given current levels of deficit spending. And according to the television ads, this is tantamount to French opposition to the Iraq war.

Then there is this bit of disconnected synchronicity: Judicial Watch filed suit this week to force Dean to open the remaining records from his stints as governor of Vermont that he has not already done.

Yeah, forget that George Bush placed almost his entire Texas gubenatorial record in a nuclear hardened vault to be opened only in the event of the Second Coming, and then only with a notarized affidavit of indemnity from God for any actions taken during his time.

No, none of that seems to matter. The important thing is that Dean is being perceived in many corners of swirly eyed Neocon land as the real thing and they are starting to pull out all the stops to get him.

The funny aside to this is of course the endless parade of Neocons geeks and commentators who have been walking through the various chat shows lately to proclaim that the GOP has decalred it’s backwards day in the party and that they are trying to put the screws to Dean because they want to run against him.

There is a certain weird logic to the idea of wanting to rally Dean supporters by attacking him, but even a cursory examination shows it to be utter nonsense. Seriously, do they expect us believe that the one guy who is leading the Democratic pack in money raising and is building a grassroots network that will bring in more support than any other in recent Democratic history with a strategy to fight Bush in his political base, namely the Heartland...yeah...this is the guy they want to go with.

But then, they are so hubris laden, they expect us to believe that they will *tell* us they want to run against Dean because they really feel he’s weak, and that will make Democrats want to nominate him? That’s *genius* no, no *Sooper*Genius*...

Are you kidding me? I guess this makes it official, Ed Gillespie is out at the RNC and Wile E. Coyote is now calling the plays for the GOP’s national strategy.

Did IQs just drop suddenly in the last few years since W took office, or is it just that anyone in the Republican Party with an IQ over 90 has decided to head down into the bomb shelter and wait for the wreckage to slide to a halt.

J. So our patriotic thought for the day: Denying the religious truths of the GOP means the Terrorists win... in the words of our Glorious Maximum Leader, or as John Ashcroft says... “Pay no attention to the bust of Leo Strauss behind the curtain...”

S. And that’s all for this week, tune in again soon for another exciting installment, unless, of course, we are declared enemies of the state.

And remember, you can now email the Mojowire at, that’s

J. And now you can check out the Mojowire online at; you can read the entire archive.

This has been the Mojowire, brought to you by Mojohaus...Mojohaus-fine journalism, afflicting the comfortable since 1988, and produced by our super funky fly producer Mike Payne and the Darkling Eclectica, here on KUCI, 88.9...

Saturday, November 29, 2003

Mojowire for 11.29; vol. 1, no. 34

MUSIC: Intro/Hendrix, Star Spangled Banner
S9/ Supreme Beings of Leisure, Under the Gun
Exeunt/WildChild, Renegade Master

intro with hendrix star spangled banner

J. Good morning, and welcome to The Mojowire, Vol. 1, No. 34... I’m Mojo...

S. And I’m Sean, it’s Saturday, November 29, 2003, Day 972 of the Neocon Captivity, and here’s the news for the week gone-by...

J. Brought to you by Mojohaus-fine journalism, afflicting the comfortable since 1988. Now headlines, from Mojohaus:

S. First this morning, we are going to get off on a danger to the Republic that has been brewing for while. We are getting passing tired of hearing about the So-Called-Liberal-Media conspiracy to destroy America. Stand by to stand by, we are going to pull the pin this thing.

J. The Bush reelection team has fired their first shot of the season and it is every bit the steaming pile of mamalian fecal matter that we all knew it was going to be, accusing all enemies of the administration of being treasonous, terror-loving, surrender monkeys.

S. Then Strychnine brings us all up to speed on how the GOP myth creation machine works and how they are spooling up even now to attempt to hypnotize the American people with tales of Maximum Leader’s heroic absence from his Texas National Guard Unit.

J. And while we’re on the subject of mythology, we want to be taking a look at our staunch ally in the war on terror, that bastion of democracy and freedom, Pakistan, for being the prime supplier of Uranium enrichment technology to wrong-headed theocrats in Iran.

…So stand by to stand by while we get ready to kick this pig...

fade in more hendrix star spangled banner for five or six count then back out again

J. Ever since the days of old when a rogue cowboy named Lyndon Baines Johnson ran the Goldwater Republican conservatives into the Rio Grande, the Jesus-addled Lizard-creatures of the American right has been reduced to singing a single song that was old when it hit the charts.

Nothing is their fault, they are victims of a horrible conspiracy of Democrats, Kennedy’s, Trilateralists, Freemasons, the news media, alien grays, bigfoots and liberal demogogues. They have no responsibility for anything.

Fine, they finally managed to sell that lemon to enough of the electorate that it made stealing the election an easy enough proposition. Now they are the ones in power, with their guy in the White House, their hand-picked bat boys in Congress and their judges populating the federal bench from the district courts to a nearly evenly split team on the Supremes.

And the best they can offer the American people in the way of the leadership they so desparately want is that they *still* have no responsibility for anything. For instance, we are losing the peace in Iraq because the liberal media is destroying our fighting morale.

The War on Terror has at best ground to a stalemate because liberals in Congress and political activists opposed to the Neocon captivity are “lending aid and comfort” to Al-Qaeda when we complain about the destruction of our civil rights by facist elements in power.

Our economy is still in the doldrums, in spite of what is clearly a suspicious reading of the third quarter gdp growth numbers, because liberal ne’r-do-wells in Congress and in academia are working feverishly at destroying America.

Look at the titles of books penned by the current media darlings of the right like Ann Coulter, “Treason,” and “Slander.” These are not catch phrases for her, she really believes liberals are slanderous traitors and should be dealt with accordingly, and so do those who read and believe her.

This is a major threat to the Republic, that in their America, it’s their way or the highway. You know, they tried something like that back in German in the 1930s, and as we recall, that didn’t work out so well for folks there. The notion that even in power, they can not abide dissenting voices. But don’t worry, they won’t be shipping us Wireheads off to the camps yet. They need us way too much.

You see, without us, then who will they have to blame for the miserable failure and destitution they will bring to the United States.

S. One of the most glaring examples of the egregious behavior is that about a month ago, the President decided that your local news room was filled with boobs and rubes who wouldn’t have the temerity to question our Maximum Leader on why he making such a bollix out of Iraq and the War on Terror.

As it turned out, the So-Called-Liberal-Media conspiracy had reached right down into the very heart of American journalism; the small to medium size newsrooms across the country, ran the Prez and his boys like the punks and drones they are.

But this was all in an attempt to get things past the national news media to try to hide the fact that an indigenous insurgent movement in Iraq was springing up and causing a major shift in U.S. reconstruction thinking.

This administration doesn’t make mistakes though, they are completely at the mercy of a bunch of talentless hacks in the West Wing press gallery. Follow this to is endpoint, though. Only the weakest President in history could possibly be held hostage by the press.

One of the major hallmarks of American political society is accountability and transperency of government, and they are the two things the Conservative movement is not only bad at, they are openly hostile to them. They see these traits as simply more liberal tricks, as if they were some sort of political Elmer Fudd writ large and hunting that wascally wibewal, and only to find themselves running off the edge of the cliff yet again...

And if the Conservatives were actually out of power, then that might be the case. However, they Conservative movement own the government, and they don’t have the stones to come correct and take responsibility for their own policies?

That is simply pathetic, and soon, they will start to run out of people to blame. Already the whole argument about the media is starting to get pretty thin with most people. And when you talk about conservative media, we are not talking about media that happens to have a certain view point.

We are talking about media that is bought and paid for by the conservative political elite in Washington, faceless stormtroopers with marching orders to forward a particular agenda, expressly approved by those in power.

J. Is there anyone who was not expecting the Bush team in full campaign rut to not peel away the thin and cheap veneer of humanity and assume their full alien shapes when they began their march to the sea.

The play has been called and the opening shot has been fired, and it in true Texas political fashion, they didn’t bother to start on the high road, instead, charging straight into the gutter.

Picture, a brave George Bush during the state of the union making morally forceful and courageous pronouncements, which he could barely pronounce, much less understand. Then a voice comes overall stating how Democrats and others in this country are attacking the President for attacking terrorists.

Are these people sick? Someone somewhere in a basement in the political office of the West Wing actually came up with the idea that they could get away with charging critics of the President of being supporters of terrorism, and then Karl Rove and his little coven signed off on this inspired piece of political sleaze.

Let’s get it right, for once shall we Karl? We are not attacking the Maximum Leader because he is attacking terrorists. We are attacking the Maximum Leader because he is *not* attacking terrorists. Because he is attacking Iraqis and pretending that he is attacking terrorists, and quite possibly creating more terrorists in the process.

We are attacking the Bush Administration because instead of aggressively taking on the domestic agenda, we are fighting a phony war on terror on the homefront, it is the President and his thugs and operatives waging a vaguely disguised attack on political dissent in this country for the sake of political power and the trucks they have backed up to the federal treasury to facilitate the shoveling of money to the energy, mining, pharmaceutical, steel and chemical industries.

This is what we can expect, they have no policies, no real agendas and no game! The only thing they can offer is to call anyone who disagrees with the a traitor. This is more McCarthy-esque than McCarthy himself. Tail-gunner Joe wouldn’t have lasted ten minutes with this people.

Is there something in the water in D.C. that renders the Republicans incapable of resisting the urge to climb the trees every four years and screech like a basket full of howler monkies in heat while throwing handfuls of feces at the voters who would just like to know what the hell they are doing.

S. It does not auger well for the political psyche of the American people that we are already seeing ads like this from the Bush Administration. We are still a month from the first primaries, a little less than a year from the general election and by that time, we will being seeing ads portraying the Democrats and liberals in general as Mexician wrestling Luca Libre villains in league with the devil.

“Los Democratés have helped Satan build El Roboto Diablo and with the assistance of dread Iraqi Flying Saucers will soon be coming to defile the blond children of the heartland.”

This is the level of political discourse to which the Bush adminsitration has doomed this nation and our electorate.

There has been a noticiable increase in the bad noise emanating from the White House everytime someone gets loose on the President, especially in terms of Iraq.

Between deciding that boys coming home in boxes on TV is bad for national morale, and therefore no longer to be public information, and people being declared terrorists because they didn’t vote for Bush, we are seeing the foundations of facism in this nation.

Campaigns that dehumanize their opponents, control of the media through friendly corporate entities with deep ties to the government in power, an external enemy that will justify the reduction of liberties, these are issues that Americans need to be thinking about.

This is the danger of democracy that Plato warns about in the Republic. The Democracy will easily devolve to a totalitarian state because the populous becomes complacent and the rulers have nothing but contempt for them.

Campaign commercials like the one Bush recently rolled out show this is happening and that the adminsitration has nothing but naked contempt for justice and the people he supposed to be serving. The people he’s actually serving, you know, the Halliburtons and Enrons, they are happier than clams right now…remember that when you see that commercial, that’s aimed at *you* hippy.

They don’t want you to vote for them, they don’t care if you vote at all, in fact, they’d be just as happy if you stayed home. It’s all taken care of…

cue JAMES music
And now the music is telling me that we have an incoming transmission from the redoubtable Dr. S9…

J. That’s right. It is time once again for our regular contributor Dr. Strychnine; having come down the well on one of his rare visits planetside, he joins here in the venerable mojohaus luxury studios this morning…take it away S9…

S9 Pardon the funny tone in my voice, gentle listeners— I spent the last three days in the 1G torus on the station in preparation for my earthwalk, but the lack of a coriolis effect is throwing off my darts game. I lost five straight games to Sean before going on the air, and I’m not happy about it.

On the other hand, one thing I am happy about is the news that the President went on his first covert special operation a couple days ago, and nobody got killed or maimed. Near as I can tell, the worst thing that happened is the President didn’t actually eat any of the Free Range Turkey they were serving at the Crawford, TX ranch. Instead, he subjected His Most Presidential Constitution to the risky gamble of a U.S. Army chow line.

I mean, I admire the bravery and all— the President skulking out of the house under the cover of darkness and disguised to look like just another Texas oil man on his way to a bidness meeting, secretly flying to Washington, then on to Baghdad, for a very special two and a half hour secret rendezvous with two hundred of his favorite professional killers. Why, who knows what terrible gastroenterological distresses he risked by eating that U.S. Army chow instead of that home cooked gourmet dinner at the ranch?

By now, I figure you’re pretty tired of this snarky tone in my voice. You’re thinking: you got a lot a darned gall S9, why do you gotta be such an ass about the President doing right by the troops on Thanksgiving? How can you possibly find fault in that?

Don’t misunderstand. You see, I’m only annoyed because I can see the mythology forming about the President’s first official state visit to Occupied Iraq. I’m not at all bugged about what the President actually did— I’m only peeved about how this event is transforming before our very eyes into an act of heroism and bravery far beyond what the President is actually capable of making.

Those might sound like pretty harsh words, but let’s be honest: this President could not make a scheduled and pre-announced visit to Iraq, even if he wanted to more than anything. The people who lovingly maintain his security bubble would simply not permit him to take such a risk. Every last one of them has a vivid image in their mind of Paul Wolfowitz standing outside the al-Rasheed Hotel in his pajamas after a barrage of RPG’s slammed into the floor below him. If George Bush had told his Secret Service detail that this Thanksgiving trip to Iraq was going to be on the public White House agenda, he would have been shot up on the spot with thorazine and Dick Cheney would have invoked the 25th Amendment.

What about the SAM-7 attack that was supposed to have winged a DHL plane in Baghdad last week? Everybody knows those wacky Iraqis have got shoulder-mounted anti-aircraft missiles, and even Donald Rumsfeld knows that it doesn’t take a genius to fire one at an airplane on approach to an airport. Well hold on there Tex. The official story from CENTCOM is that there is no evidence that Iraqi insurgent forces possess SAM-7’s.

The DHL plane was easily winged in broad daylight, it came in unescorted, and there wasn’t any particular security detail around Baghdad International specifically tasked with protecting it. When Air Force One landed in Baghdad, it was on a secret mission, it landed in the dark, and you’d be insane if you thought the entire approach to the airfield wasn’t swept and secured with extreme prejudice in the hours before the President arrived.

But none of that will be important in the mythology we’re creating about this event. Check out this quote from a U of Texas School of Government professor named Bruce Buchanan, who told a Reuters reporter yesterday, “There was a serious element of risk, so it’s more difficult to trivialize or dismiss as mere showmanship. If they can take down a helicopter with a shoulder-fired missle, they could take down Air Force One.”

See how this works? It’s brilliant. Pay no attention to the fact that the situation is so bad in Iraq that the President can’t even fly into a heavily armed American military base without keeping it a secret so deep that he even has to lie to his wife about where he’s going. No, the myth we’re building here is that the President is ready to put his own personal life on the line to support the troops in Iraq.

Here’s another analsyt, one Shirley Warshaw, a professor of political science at Gettysburg College, going on the record to say, “I think it shows that he is willing to stand up and be counted for something he believes in. He has become personally involved now in this loss of life.”

You watch. This time next year, nobody will remember that the President was AWOL from his National Guard post during the Viet Nam war—
Cue James music for exit
—but everybody will get misty-eyed when they think about the President serving Thanksgiving dinner to the troops in Iraq. It’ll be like Niagra Falls.

J. And once again, we are faced with yet another issue of how international intransigence on nuclear proliferation is going to come back and bite us all on the butt.

No kidding…one day making the Kessel Run down the 405 to or from some function several years ago, I saw a beat to hell minivan stuffed with about a dozen people swerving as though the driver had little practice in pointing a car in a given direction.

But the thing that really caught my was a bumper sticker, green and white that stood off from the burnished bronze/orange color of the van: “Praise Allah, we have the bomb” set against a Pakistani flag on the left of the sticker and a representation of a mushroom cloud on the right.

Great, from some of the same people who brought us plane hijacking and suicide bombers, we now get the news that they, or at least some of their friends, have the ability can split atoms and hurl them great distances.

There are many who saw this as a serious threat to the security of the free world. It was more than the stability of already fragile Indian/Pakistan relations we were worried about. It was about Pakistani ties, at some fairly high levels, with radical Islamists who made no secret of their distaste for the west.

This was not a good combination of factors to those of us who followed these sorts issues in the news.

So, let’s fast forward a couple of years, shall we? The Clinton years end, Bush takes over, idiots with a red hot pepper of anti-American rage drive planes into buildings, we get cozy with several previously unfriendly countries -- like Pakistan -- for a war on terror, we invade Afghanistan, then a short time later Iraq, and so here we are...

But the thing is that we knew Pakistan had already sold and traded a bunch of their bomb-making technology to the North Koreans. Now once they joined with the forces of Red, White and Blue grooviness on the war on evil-doers they swore they would never do it again.

That brings us to this little gem: “The United Nations nuclear watchdog agency is investigating potential links between the atomic programs of Iran and Pakistan after discovering that the secret Iranian uranium-enrichment program used technology identical to Pakistani plans, diplomats said.
Tehran acknowledged to the International Atomic Energy Agency that its centrifuge enrichment program was based on designs by a European firm, Urenco. Diplomats said the designs were the same Urenco-based technology used by Pakistan to develop its nuclear bomb in the 1990s…

“Abdul Qadeer Khan, the primary developer of Pakistan's nuclear bomb, worked at the Urenco enrichment plant in the Dutch city of Almelo in the 1970s. After returning to Pakistan, he was accused of stealing centrifuge plans from the facility. Two former Iranian diplomats told the Los Angeles Times last summer that Khan made several trips to Iran, beginning in 1987, to help with Iran's nuclear program.

“One of them, Ali Akbar Omid Mehr, said Khan was given a villa on the Caspian Sea in return for his assistance…The Iranian centrifuge program is at the top of the IAEA inquiry list because traces of weapons-grade uranium were found in two locations where the machines had been assembled and tested.”

Does anyone else see a little problem with this? Especially given Iran’s hostility towards any secular government in Iraq and the number of people in the south of Iraq who would probably not mind a radical Islamist theocracy take power in Iraq?

S. For the short term at least, we don’t care about the transfer of technology, who gave what to who. That’s not the imporant thing. The critical point here is that this technology was allowed to proliferate at all.

And yet again, the world sleeps, led by the number one proliferation snoozer, the United States, while weapons of mass destruction are allowed to spread. And afterall wasn’t that the main reason we had to go after Saddam Hussein?

One would think that after all the talk from Dick Cheney and Donald Rumsfeld about the danger of rogue states having access to such weapons, the United States would never miss an opportunity again ratchet down on the spread of such weapons.

But alas, there is far too much guilt to be spread around the international community on this one to simply try to hang this on the Bush Administration as just another of their long and distinguished list of horrible mistakes.

And yeah, it’s pretty simple for us to step up here week after week and preach the mantra of cooperative threat reduction and dwindling proliferation, but once the nuclear genie is out of the bottle, there is really little that can be done to put it back in.

This was the point of Niehls Bohr’s 1944 paper “We Are In An Entirely New Situation That Can Not Be Resolved By War.” The problem is that while Bohr understood that in a nuclear world, global security would hinge on the *least* stable state with the bomb, he probably never foresaw stateless threats or guys willing to stuff a truck full of explosives and drive it into a building.

As a result, his idea that there should be a complete open sourcing of nuclear technology starts to sound as naive as those others in the dawn of the nuclear age who thought the bomb could be kept an absolute secret of the state.

So then here we are 50 years later, and the bomb is filtering down, slowly but surely through the ranks of so-called “responsible nations” read the U.S., Europeans and those who play in their economic club.

Hey, if we had *the*answer* we would have told you already, trust us, we are not holding it back for a politically opportune moment. The problem is that as economic disparity in the world increases, there are those states that will seek any leg up anyway they can.

Perhaps it starts there, making it unnecessary for states to get the bomb to get a seat at the adults table of international relations. Regardless, we had better figure it out quick, because if we don’t … well, hell, we don’t have to spell it out for you, you know what happens otherwise.

J. So our patriotic thought for the day: Allowing media to write whatever it wants means the Terrorists win... or as John Ashcroft says... “That Herman Goering guy was really on to something.”


S. And that’s all for this week, tune in again soon for another exciting installment, unless, of course, we are declared enemies of the state.

And remember, you can now email the Mojowire at, that’s

J. This has been the Mojowire, brought to you by Mojohaus... Mojohaus-fine journalism, afflicting the comfortable since 1988, and produced by our super funky fly producer Mike Payne and the Darkling Eclectica, here on KUCI, 88.9...

Saturday, November 22, 2003

Mojowire for 11.22; vol. 1, no. 33

MUSIC: Intro/Hendrix, Star Spangled Banner
S9/ Supreme Beings of Leisure, Under the Gun
Exeunt/WildChild, Renegade Master

intro with hendrix star spangled banner

J. Good morning, and welcome to The Mojowire, Vol. 1, No. 33... I’m Mojo...

S. And I’m Sean, it’s Saturday, November 22, 2003, year 3 of the neocon captivity, and here’s the news for the week gone-by...

J. Brought to you by Mojohaus-fine journalism, afflicting the comfortable since 1988. Now headlines, from Mojohaus:

S. First this morning, it was not a PhiBetaKappa week for the neocon hive brain, starting with another run at discredited stories of Saddam and Osama as bed-buddies and ended with an outright admission by senior Defense Department adviser that the war was completely unlawful.

J. Next, with a court somewhere finally making the inevitable conclusion that Gays and Lesbians are people just like everyone else, the political landscape shifted treacherously under the feet of the left and the right. We say to our progressive brethren, chill out, this really *is* good news.

S. Then, with this week’s dose of horror, Dr. Strychnine explains why average Americans need to pay attention to the growing scandal in mutual fund trading, and reads the bones on what it could auger for middle class boomers and older ‘X’ers still delusional enough to think they’ll be able to retire on cue with 401k plans.

J. Finally, we have a go at the Republican’s “final solution” on medicare that was passed near dawn by a razor thin margin in the House of Represenatives and will, in all likelyhood spell the beginning of the end for one of the most successful social programs of all time.

So stand by to stand by while we get ready to kick this pig...

fade in more hendrix star spangled banner for five or six count then back out again

J. For those of you who missed it last week, The Weekly Standard in a fit of breathless euphoria waxed absolutely apoplectic regarding a memo from the Defense Department that absolutely, finally and once and for all detailed the complicated and in depth working relationship between Al Qaeda and Saddam Hussein.

Fred Barnes, executive editor of the Standard, went on FoxNews Sunday with his chest puffed out about as far as it would go in a primitive male dominance display whipped out his pathetic and flacid excuse for a news chalootie and proclaimed himself to be Yao-King-of-the-Rock!

And even on FoxNews, this kind of behavior was immediately the subject of derisive laughter... Why? Because even they knew that this would end with the story blowing up in Barnes’ face like a cheap Acme Road-Runner-Seeking-Dynamite-Rocket-Deluxe in the hands of the Coyote.

The wheels have officially come off the war in Iraq for the West Wing speechwriters passing themselves off as policy wonks. There is now nothing for them to do but put their heads down between their knees and wait for the wreckage to slide to a halt.

There have been a few developments in the past week that demonstrate the political chaos generated by the war and portrays the frightening level to which our political leadership is taking its cues from Tom Clancy novels and PlayStation first person shoot-’em-up games...

First, the aforementioned story on Iraq and Al Qaeda, which upon even cursory examination appears to be a cynical ploy at cherry picking unreliable and uncorroborated intel at best, and outright mendacity at worst.

Next generals on the ground in Iraq countering recent claims that foreign fighters are streaming across the border from Syria, and finally an outright admission from Richard Perle, of the Defense Policy Board that America’s war against Iraq was unlawful, but we did it anyway, because we can break any law we want...

To begin with, the memo the Standard based their reporting on was a justification from Doug Feith, Deputy SecDef for Iraqi exploitation when the Senate Intelligence Committee asked for an explanation for the constant harping on a possible Iraq-Bin Laden partnership.

The memo was nothing new, it was a restatement of the same vague and unsupported stories that had been flying around for years, and had already been discredited by the actual intelligence services that allegedly supplied them; not just CIA, but the National Security and the Defense Intelligence agencies, as well.

But that did not stop the Standard from proclaiming “Case Closed” in, like, 10,000 point type, on their front page about a week ago. Unfortunately, the defense department, in their own bellicose fashion, had to put out a terse press release telling the neocon community to cool it because their braying was embarassing to the President at, as it turned out to be, the beginning of an overall period of deep shame.

S. U.S. military commanders in Iraq quickly followed this faux pas by announcing to all and sundry that tales being spun by neocon thugs in Congress and their pet scribblers in their op-ed pages across the country, of an Army of Darkness streaming across the border from Syria bet on drinking the blood of young American servicemen and women was simply not the case.

From the New York Times on Wednesday: “I want to underscore that most of the attacks on our forces are by former regime loyalists and other Iraqis, not foreign forces,” said, Maj. Gen. Charles H. Swannack Jr., commander of the 82nd Airborne Division.

His view was echoed by Maj. Gen. David H. Petraeus, commander of the 101st Airborne Division, which controls northern Iraq and parts of its borders with Syria, Turkey and Iran.

And just as an aside -- “Gen. Patraeus?” Even our generals there are starting to have ancient Roman and Greek names...

Swannack went on to say that the largest group they had come across was a group of six guys crossing the border from Syria. One was armed with a knife, apparently, and was shot when he brandished it at U.S. troops.

Compare this record to the rhetoric of our Maximum Leader on Oct. 28: “The foreign terrorists are trying to create conditions of fear and retreat because they fear a free and peaceful state in the midst of a part of the world where terror has found recruits.”

So then to have the actual military leaders say that there is little or no foreign involvement there outside of the U.S. and Britain puts a rather damp squib on the whole flypaper theory of the “War on Terror” the administration has been trying to sell.

You know, you’ve been hearing this one lately, let’s see, it goes a little something like this: “Instead of flying planes into buildings in America, we have drawn the terrorists to Iraq; subjecting the people we went there to liberate, to the violence, fear and blood of a prolonged asymetrical war of attrition, because, hey...better you than me...yea us...”

The theory itself is not only an amoral political ploy and an utterly criminal act of foisting violence on people who have not done anything to us, but now it appears that it is completely without factual foundation as well.

Nice job, Rummy, rock on!

But that is still nothing compared to the admission this week from the king of swing, Richard Perle, the top of the pyramid in the Neocon Hive brain inside the Pentagram.

Speaking in London last week, Perle made the astute observation that there was no legal precedent, much less international law to which the U.S. is signatory, that would allow a pre-emptive, unilateral war.

“I think in this case international law stood in the way of doing the right law ... would have required us to leave Saddam Hussein alone. [French intransigence] meant there had been no practical mechanism consistent with the rules of the UN for dealing with Saddam Hussein,” the Guardian UK reported Perle saying last week.

So it comes to that, just an open admission that when the law would otherwise prevent the U.S. from doing what it wants, the problem is not the U.S., it’s the law. And of course, we should just blow off any laws we don’t like, because all that legal mumbo-jumbo is just for the beatniks in the coffeehouses, and we’re talkin’ about terrorism here, hippy!

Remember, the only reason this is a big deal is that both Maximum Leader, and his punch and judy puppet across the pond, have been proclaiming in loud, authoritative voices that this war was not only just, it was completely legal and within due bounds of all commonly agreed upon norms of international conduct and law.

Of course, this was a thin tissue of lies, and many of us loudly denounced it as so, only to be called unpatriotic, pro-terrorist and a host of other mean, nasty names. But now, since it is all happening, and as they say in litigation circles, you can’t un-ring the bell, Perle and his pals can now crawl out of the Nazi cross-dressing closet, where we knew they were all along, and say that the war was unlawful on a scale that only those who lived through the Nixon administration can understand.

These are the augers this week for the Maximum Leader, his political advisers and other various flunkies, lackies and assorted hangers-on. It might be that the time is drawing nigh -- thanks to a combination of a politcal campaign season, the new found technology of blogs as new news media and a profound sense of doubt among the electorate as a whole -- that the Iraq war may just be the albatross that gets strung around Dubya’s neck.

Soon it will be impossible for people to not come to the realization that not only does the emperor have no clothes on, but that naked, the emperor is really a frightful sight, indeed a poster boy for indecency laws...

J. Well, we knew it was just a matter of time before some state court somewhere gets loose and makes the intellectual stretch to declare that gays and lesbians are real people and have the rights of other real people, including marriage.

And it also followed that immediately afterwards, the American Right’s tin-foil hat brigade will be entranced in an orgy of hand-wringing and teeth-gnashing, while the left trembles in trepidation at the baleful legal artifact placed in their lap.

Okay...wireheads, we understand, so everyone, take a deep cleansing breath and repeat after me: “culture war issues always backfire on Republicans, gay marriage will not edge out the economic runiation and disastrous war in Iraq as the front burner issues in this election season.”

And you know, that’s sort of a shame, in a way. Right now, Judge Roy Moore of Alabama is being recruited by the Constitution Party to run for President. And we here at the wire say “oh please, oh please, oh please.” Tell us where to send the money, who to write to, what to say...please Judge, please run!

Why? Because whenever one of these guys gets loose on the American political landscape, the far right of the party gets extra wiggy, and then off come the human masks and out come the bat wings, and the rest of the electorate sees them for what they are, little incubi sent to lead us all astray...

You see, this way we see just where all these freaks are. It makes it tougher for them to hide, and right now, that’s what they have been good at. They have learned to blend in with the regular humans very well, especially during an election year. Fortunately, most of the time, one of the herd gets a head full of bad drink and ascends the soap box in the town square to get their Moses on and then they are revealed, and we can have a good laugh.

Then the likes of Ralph Reed and the Christian Coalition came along, and took the rules of political insurgency perfected by progressives and applied them to his campaign and the rules began to change.

Remember how during the 2000 election, the GOP kept Tom Delay and other GOP subhuman lizard men away from the camera’s as much as possible? The Polls consistently show that the key to the Presidents popular support outside of the Dittoheads and Deliverance extras is the cultivation of his image as President Barney Fife.

All the White House needs is to have the Presidents nase revert into the freak mode and demand the White House support them as they rant about the encrouching hordes of gay couples threatneing America with a rash of tasteful weddings.

And lets not lose sight of what this is really about. This is the grotesque homophobia on the right, fed a steady diet of medieval biblical hysteria by a pack of fear mongers selling fundameltalist Christian snake oil. Recognizing the esssential rights and dignity of gay people will deprive the right of their key bogeymen.

It’s going to be increasingly difficult to scare the money and votes out of red blooded Americans if they accept gay people as worthy of their respect and inclusion. And the glue that holds the GOP electoral majority together, fear of a gay, feminist, black planet, will start to unravel. The bell is tolling for the GOP hate machine. And we’ll keep ringing that bell until George Bush has to pack up his Jesus Bobblehead in the Oval office and go back to his true calling, clearing brush in Texas.

S. Now, with that said, can we have a little heart to heart with some of our progressive Democratic bretheren, please?

When, exactly, did the progressive political movement in this country, become too timid to stand up and say that prejudice and bigotry is wrong? We should be celebrating this court decision from the rooftops, not cowering in fear in the some smoke filled backroom.

In the 40-some years since Martin Luther King, Jr. and the civil rights movement, we have gone from standing in the street taking it in the teeth from high pressure water hoses and police dogs because some troglodyte southern sherrif had the temerity to say our friends weren’t welcome in their cafes to skulking around private meetings expressing our outrage behind our hands lest the rest of the world should think we are taking an actual position on something.

Come on, we know right from wrong and we always have. But for the last 20-some years, we have been telling ourselves that winning elections was more important than fighting for our principles and even worse, that they were mutually exclusive goals.

We convinced ourselves that once we got into power then we would unveil the shining white light of our progressive policies. Well, we tried that with Bill Clinton and not only got blown out of the water for it by Republicans who believed, rightly, that the actual power base was not as committed to these concepts as we wanted them to be, we also then took one in the shorts from the rest of the party who turned on us for allegedly trying to queer their deal at the ballot box.

But the progressive movement is starting to wake up to the fact that they have to bring the party and electorate to the policy, not the other way around. Whatever happened to convincing the electorate you are right?

And moreover, it has to be done with a sense of strength and moral purpose, that will convince the rest of the party that we really do have something significant and real to bring to the political process, namely a message that will resonate with average Americans.

We know we won’t win every one of them, and with gay marriage, we know there are some who will turn us off. But at the end of the day, their only alternative is the 700 Club-addled Lizard Men of planet Republitron.

On balance, we are a better deal for the Democratic Party than the Republican Light gang in the Democratic Leadership Conference. The problem is that if we start to look wishy washy or like we are too poll driven in our politics, then we will be perceived as weak and will lose credibility with the rest of the party.

The proof of this is that the DLC has lost credibility with us. And why? Because they take the most cowardly, poll-driven, faux populist stands imaginable, which renders them politically impotent and out of touch with their base.

Progressives are about ideals, about ensuring that our society protects the rights of all its members, including gays and lesbians. When did we start having to feel shamed about that?

Instead of just dwelling on our ability to get votes, we need to be out there talking about our ideas, and that includes extending the promise of the full rights and privleges of American citizenship to gays and lesbians.

Because if we don’t, if we run from our ideas in public, then we are just as bad or worse than the spineless centerists, because our ideals would be nothing more than a cheap facade.

cue JAMES music
And now the music is telling me that we have an incoming transmission from the redoubtable Dr. S9…

J. That’s right. It is time once again for our regular contributor Dr. Strychnine, reporting from his super-secret, ultra-dope, mega-cool, extra-jiggy, Mojohaus spy satellite of love high in geosynchronous orbit above Baghdad by the Bay…take it away S9…

S9 Greetings from high orbit, comrades. Now the the solar flares have lessened somewhat in frequency and intensity, we're not spending all our time in the freshwater reservoir biting our nails and fidgeting with our dosimeters. So we can spare a little love to help explain to our American audiences what all the fuss is about in the mutual fund industry.

First things first. If you're under forty, you're not so filthy rich you still have to work for a living, and you don't know what is a mutual fund, then you better learn. Because they're where a
substantial part of your retirement savings are parked. If you're worker with a pension account, or your employers are offering you a 401K plan, odds are good all that money is invested in the shares of mutual fund entities.

What is a mutual fund? It's like an artificial holding company that exists for no other purpose than to sell its shares to investors, and use the money raised to buy and sell stocks, bonds and other creatures of high finance. An awful lot of working class Americans have their retirement savings invested in mutual funds, and in most cases they didn't have any choice in the matter of where to park their money. Unions and employers often have retirement savings plans for their
employees that give them little or no discretion about where their savings are invested.

Now, for the last several months, the business section has been screaming about corruption in the mutual fund industry. What is that all about, you ask? If you've been reading the headlines and trying to get your head around what the papers are saying in the articles, you're probably concerned that somehow, some way, the filthy, greedy, bloodsucking moonbats on Wall Street have been caught with their greasy digits in the cookie jar with your retirement savings in it-- and you're just not sure how badly you've been ripped off.

By now, you've already dug out your statements and double-checked them to see if all the figures add up. I have no doubt they're impeccable. You will not see how much the greedheads stole from you by looking at your statements. The scams the greedheads used to skim from your precious retirement savings were more subtle than that.

Let's look at how one of them worked. Consider the practice of "late-day trading"-- if you were a friend of the fund manager, or one of his best customers, and you had a lot of money for playing around in the stock market, then you could buy shares in the fund after hours, when all the normal people like you and me were shut out. The price of mutual fund shares is set at the close of trading, so if a late-day trader gets wind after the market closes of some positive news about a stock the mutual fund holds, then he can trade on that news before anyone else can at a price that was set before the news broke. The net effect is to skim some of the profit off the top of the fund before it
even gets distributed into the shares.

Elliott Spitzer is the New York attorney general who is investigating the mutual fund industry, and here's how *he* describes the practice of "late-day trading": it's like being allowed to bet on yesterday's horse race after the winner has already been determined.

How much money are we talking about? For the individual worker with a 401K account balance at around $100,000, it could be anywhere from about a hundred dollars down to zero dollars, i.e. it's possible you didn't lose anything. It depends on the type of funds you're invested in, and which companies were managing them. Apparently, not all of the mutual funds were corrupt-- just the ones managed by Banc One, Strong Financial, Janus and Bank of America Nations (and whichever unnamed ones Spitzer has yet to uncover). International funds were the easiest to fuggle because of the larger timezone differences, so that's where the estimates say the most money has been lost.

The real problem, as I see it, with these mutual fund managers and their buddies (who skimmed off the retirement savings of working Americans) is *not* how much they took from each individual person. It's how much damage they do to the financial markets by cheating. They're like spammers, in a way. It doesn't cost the individual recipient of a spam message very much to download the spam and filter it. But the overall utility of the network is greatly eroded by the large volume of spam distributed so broadly across the entire population.

The mutual fund abuse creates the same kind of hits to the efficiency of the market/network as combating spam does. And it's the same sort of problem: a small number of people have figured out how to become obscenely wealthy by trashing the commons and skimming a little bit from everybody in the network. Does that sound like a familiar dynamic?

It should. It's the central theme of all our scandals of corporate and civil corruption. From Enron, Worldcom, and Global Crossing, to Harken Energy, Halliburton and the Iraqi CPA, to the California energy crisis and the budget process failure in Sacramento, to the problems of global
warming, ocean depletion and space junk, the central feature of all these scandals is that you can bank phat stacks of filthy lucre trashing the commons and looting the public wealth, and nobody has the power to stop it.
Cue James music for exit
Just remember that when the dark night comes and your government is trying to sell you on transferring all the money in your Social Security balance into private mutual funds. We've seen that gambit played a million times before, haven't we?

J. As you slept, Medicare reform was approved by the House of Representatives in a titanic struggle that included a three hour roll call vote on the floor, some knee breaking on the part of Majority Whip Mel Blount from Montana and a final 220 to 215 tally. Now the bill, touted as reform, will make it’s way for the Senate, where its future is still uncertain.

And it bears remembering that whenever Republicans want to reform something, you can be assured that someone wealthy will be wealthier, and someone poor will be substantantially more poor.

True to form, the Republican Party has created a masterpiece of subterfuge and cruel hypocrisy that makes you wonder if there is shred of human DNA left in the Republican Party.

The essential problems are these. Medicare was concieved before the pharmacology revolution, and so was created without a provision for paying for the drugs of Beneficiares. Medicare, part of which is funded by a payroll tax, and the rest paid out of general revenues, is due for the same train wreck that Social Security is headed to when the Boomers retire.

The time to deal with these problems is now. Either a huge infusion of new revenue sources, or a drastic cutback in benefits are the ugly choices awaiting anyone who wants to confront the issues.
But don’t worry folks, the same people who brought you the horror of California electricity deregulation and the annihilation of the Savings and Loan industry are bringing the plague of Market Fundamentalism to a doctor’s office near you. That’s right, Dr Republican is prescribing that classic snake oil, the free market.

The cruel irony of the particular brand of market fundamentalism embraced in the Republican party has little to do with the Free Market. It has everything to do with taking your hard earned tax dollars and raining them down on the campaign contributors. And this glorious philosopy is the guiding principle behind our new Medicare reform.

One of the principal causes of distres for Meidcare beneficiares is the obscenely high cost of presciption drugs. The market power of the pharmaceutical companies, powered by the new drugs, funded in part by you the taxpayer, and augmented by the patent system and a complete lack of any regulation in the market, have combined to put the grusome choice for Seniors between their prescrpiton and their rent or food.

Other less civilized countries, keep presciption drugs affordable for their populaitons, and thus have costs of half or less for many of their most commonly used medicines. But here in the city on the hill, we allow our pharmaceutical companies to gouge our parents and grandparents -- nice!

Unfortunately, grandma and grandpa kettle vote and through advocacy groups like the AARP, they swing a mighty big electoral stick. And they have been working Congress to come up with something to deal with the high cost of presciptions. Set this against the backdrop of the cruel elephant in the room that sits on every budget cycle.

Namely that the Mecicare and Social Security bomb is ticking, and some brave Congressional session is going to have to deal with it and the electoral consequences. Well apparently not this sesssion.

S. The current version of Medicare reform is sublime, in that it provides some relief for lower income seniors, and a massive stacks of benjamins for the insurance industry. Funny, but no effort is made to rein in drug prices, the driving force of the problem. Rather, the Mensa’s in the Republican party want to create “competition.”

Translation, the Republicns despise Medicare, and want to basiclly provide medical coverage through private insurers instead with vouchers. How unfortuante the party never got the soul or concsience voucher. It’s really a marvel when you consider it.

Seniors get enough from the bill to get them off the party’s back, their buddies in the insurance industry get mass jack, and they lay the foundation for the destruction of Medicare. I’m sure their enjoying that sense of accomplishment Governor Tarkin and Darth Vader felt when watched Alderaan go up in smoke.

The House has already passed the bill. Although you must consider the irony that many Conservatives are unhappy with the bill. It might help someone by accident, we suppose. Passage in the Senate is proving to be a more difficult issue.

Many Senate Demcrats and some Republicans who still are holding tenuously onto their humanity have indicated they will not vote for the issue. A fillibuster is possible, and it’s largely been conceded, at least for now, there are not enough votes to break a filibuster.

The really odd thing is that the AARP, the largest single association of retirees, has approved the current bill. The AARP has become largely a discount club for various services, and the current leadership of the AARP is either insane or a pack of retarded dupes.

They have sold Medicare, the single greatest achievement in improving the life of America’s elderly, down the river. How is it that the AARP is willing to allow the pharmaceutical companies to gouge their members for drugs they need?

Apparently they are, and instead of lancing the boil of unrestrained greed that pervades the drug market, they would rather pimp massive corporate giveaways and the subversion of medicare. Nice job...

But then again, according to Democratic leadership, they have also become part and parcel of the broken system, as a third-party broker for insurance and pharmaceutical services.

It was revealed that the AARP took in nearly $210 million in royalties from various insurance concerns such as United Health Care and MetLife, amounting to a third of the organizations money. Make no mistake, privitizing Medicare means big money for the AARP, and they are apparently not above selling their members into slavery to HMOs and large insurance companies.

Look, it’s very simple, Newt Gingrich, who has been the main player behind the scenes for the GOP planning on Medicare legislation has been one of its most outspoken detractors for 20 years and has never missed a moment to try to kill the thing; his stated goal on more than one occasion.

This is not about extending protection to seniors, it’s about killing a popular and necessary government program that protects health care of our most vulnerable population and turning it into a market-maker for yet more rich friends of the administration.

Seniors need to ignore the AARP commercials and exercise the common sense that comes with the wisdom of age, this is not the reform you were promised, this is about using you to make the rich even richer. Remember *that* come election time...

J. So our patriotic thought for the day: Obeying the law means the Terrorists win... or as John Ashcroft says... “I *am* the Law!”


S. And that’s all for this week, tune in again soon for another exciting installment, unless, of course, we are declared enemies of the state.

And remember, you can now email the Mojowire at, that’s

J. This has been the Mojowire, brought to you by Mojohaus...Mojohaus-fine journalism, afflicting the comfortable since 1988, and produced by our super funky fly producer Mike Payne and the Darkling Eclectica, here on KUCI, 88.9...