J. Good morning, and welcome to The Mojowire, Vol. 2, No. 08... I'm Mojo...
S. And I'm Sean, it's Saturday, June 06 2004, Day 1,156 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 learn of yet more goofiness from the White House foreign relations team. Remember Nancy Reagan and her astrologer? This is better; the NSC gang consulting with honest to God end of the world cultists.
J. Next, the latest in the ongoing saga of Jose Padilla and the dread Lord Ashcroft's unremitting war on the Constitution. The latest round has us sounding the Red Alert and trying to convince us that blonde haired blue eyed Al Qaeda Hypno-assassins are infiltrating our noble institutions, which is of course why we have to deprive Padilla of all his rights.
S. Then Strychnine brings the horrifying noise regarding the reality of torture in Iraq and what the horribler part just might be: Chemical induced fear with some of Uncle Sydney's Famous Third Eye Cleanser...
J.Finally this morning, we want to have a word regarding the notion that only some people's military service is of any worth, even if their service was a thin tissue of lies, such as the case of our Maximum Leader.
...So stand by to stand by while we get ready to pull the pin on this thing...
LEFT BEHIND! (IN THE PREVIOUS GRADE)
J. As the editors here at the Wire were just on the verge of swilling down their first taste of life giving coffee one morning a few weeks back, this dreadful thing appeared on our monitors in our secret command bunker from Ron Perlstein at the Village Voice:
It was an e-mail we weren't meant to see. Not for our eyes were the notes that showed White House staffers taking two-hour meetings with Christian fundamentalists, where they passed off bogus social science on gay marriage as if it were holy writ and issued fiery warnings that ''the Presidents [sic] Administration and current Government is engaged in cultural, economical, and social struggle on every level''
This to a group whose representative in Israel believed herself to have been attacked by witchcraft unleashed by proximity to a volume of Harry Potter.
Most of all, apparently, we're not supposed to know the National Security Council's top Middle East aide consults with apocalyptic Christians eager to ensure American policy on Israel conforms with their sectarian doomsday scenarios.
Can these people just get on the ball and Leave us Behind already? Why is the White House Briefing Christian Fundamentalist on ANYTHING? Did the Theocratic coup d'tat happen while I was in the Men's room at the Pub? Take your sedatives if you got any wireheads, this is going to hurt...alot..
''The e-mailed meeting summary reveals NSC Near East and North African Affairs director Elliott Abrams sitting down with the Apostolic Congress and massaging their theological concerns. Claiming to be 'the Christian Voice in the Nation's Capital,' the members vociferously oppose the idea of a Palestinian state.
They fear an Israeli withdrawal from Gaza might enable just that, and they object on the grounds that all of Old Testament Israel belongs to the Jews. Until Israel is intact and Solomon's temple rebuilt, they believe, Christ won't come back to earth.
Just for starters, remember Elliot Abrams, former Reagan NSC staffer who was indicted by the Independent Counsel in the Iran Contra scandal and escaped romance in the Federal Clink through a Christmas day pardon from George the Elder?
I thought you might. So now he sweetalks insane religious cranks, who want to deprive the Palestinians of their legitimate political rights because of their freakish Apocalypse fantasies? Do I have that right?
''The Middle East was not the only issue discussed at the March 25 meeting. James Wilkinson, deputy national security advisor for communications, spoke first and is characterized as stating that the 9-11 Commission 'is portraying those who have given their all to protect this nation as ''weak on terrorism,'' ' " that "99 percent of all the men and women protecting us in this fight against terrorism are career citizens...
Tim Goeglein, deputy director of public liaison and the White House's point man with evangelical Christians, moderated, and he also spoke on the issue of same-sex marriage. According to the memo, he asked the rhetorical questions: 'What will happen to our country if that actually happens? What do those pushing such hope to gain?' ''
''They want to change America.'' How so? He quoted the research of Hoover Institute senior fellow Stanley Kurtz, who holds that since gay marriage was legalized in Scandinavia, marriage itself has virtually ceased to exist. (In fact, since Sweden instituted a registered-partnership law for same-sex couples in the mid '90s, there has been no overall change in the marriage and divorce rates there.)
It is Matt Schlapp, White House political director and Karl Rove's chief lieutenant, who was paraphrased as stating 'that the Presidents Administration and current Government is engaged in cultural, economical, and social struggle on every level.'
Also present at the meeting was Kristen Silverberg, deputy assistant to the president for domestic policy. (None of the participants responded to interview requests.)''
So The National Security Councils Middle East point man and members of the White House's Domestic policy team are briefing fundamentalists gripping for the end times on policy issues? The reason we are pimping this to you wireheads, is that this really sheds light on the what the true agenda of this Administration is, and that is political victory at all costs.
And if that means that American policy in one of the worlds most notoriously violent and dangerous hotspots is turned into a disaster to satisfy the fantasies of an important voting bloc so be it. If the truth about the 9/11 attacks and improving our security by understanding them dings the Presidents electiblity, too bad commie, we always knew you hated America.
And if Gay Americans are deprived of fundamental rights in the name of a hate fueled perversion of Christian beliefs of love and compassion, well, I guess you don't have the secret decoder ring for the bible, now do you?
S. It is certainly not unusual for groups with a stake in a policy to speak directly to White House Staff about what is important to them, or for friendly groups to be briefed on issues. But what possible stake in American Foreign policy do evangelical groups have that you or I don't?
The stake is that a cult of christian apocalypse has grown up in the last few decades, fueled by pseudo intellectual diatribes like the Late Great Planet Earth and others, that place the final battle between Jesus and the forces of liberalism...errrr ...Satan somewhere in what was the biblical region where Ancient Israel existed.
So these groups are lobbyists with a stake in policy, and that is lobbying the White House to nurture the precise events designed to foster the freakin end of the world! This is an administration that specialized in stretching the boundries of outrage and credulity, but taking meetings from cranks about setting up the end of the world?
What is the big deal about shaping foreign policy in the Middle East to the so called literalism standards of eschatology cranks? Their view of this end game says that Jesus can only return to bring the big smackdown if the Temple of Solomon is rebuilt.
That temple was destroyed by the Romans 2000 years ago, and currently on that same spot is the 3rd most sacred shrine in Islam. You cannot rebuild that Temple without tearing down the Mosque that sits on it.
Besides the permanent end of any hope of peace in the Middle East, it is horrifically immoral and unethical to destroy someone's religious shrine, one that has sat there for over a thousand years, because of the way you interpret one of the most opaque and misunderstood chapters in the Bible.
Nothing in this plan would benefit the United States, the people of Israel or the Palestinians, it would only feed the superstitions of a small gang of wacky cultist who have parlayed the support of whack billionaires and a legion of devoted sheep like voters into some political clout at the White House.
And if we are going to honor the property rights of dissolved nations from 200 thousand years ago, then when exactly are we going to hand over all the choice real estate we grifted from Native Americans? Are the aliens going to file a lien on Roswell?
I think we're getting the picture here. Ripping apart a site sacred to a Billion people to satisfy some notion from a mystical text, an act that will guarantee an outbreak of murder and hatred and is quite possibly a crime against humanity under international law is so dumb I CANNOT BELIEVE ANYONE WALKING UPRIGHT SEROUSLY LISTENS TO IT, LET ALONE GET ACCESS TO THE WHITE HOUSE TO PIMP IT!
On a final note, the groups represenative in Israel, Kim Johnson, who fretted about the Witchcraft from harry Potter deserves a little play. Apparently this group, The Apostolic Congress's, has a misionary in Israel trying to convert those heathens on the down low, and she ran into a little trouble of the Hogwarts variety. Since Prisoner of Azkaban is rolling out next week, we thought you needed to hear how she described her Potter moment: check it:
''Two of the three nights in my apartment I have been attacked by a hair raising spirit of fear," she writes, noting the sublet contained a Harry Potter book; "at this time I am associating it with witchcraft...''
Uhh yeah...Kimmy... Harry Potter books cause Evil Spirits to harras you in your crib at night. That's who gets access to the White House folks, to whisper in George Bush's ear, while you sit at home and try to figure out how afford your mortgage and health care.
Mouth Breathers who think Childrens fantasy literature is full of the boogie man and plaguing them in there sleep... HELLLLO! This used to be grounds for a commitment hearing? Now Harry Potter fear, and just roll that around on the soft palette ......Harry...Potter...Fear is now the key to getting your name on the White House Guest List...
The lesson here is:
Harry Potter needs you to vote George W Voldemort out of office!..Be a Gryffindor and vote him out of office. Dumbldore would be proud!
ALERT CONDITION MEGALON
J. One of the most recent signs that the A Team in the Bush Administration has entered it's 1970's Clapton Heroin phase is the behavior of Attorney General John Ashcroft. A few weeks ago, the Attorney General and FBI Director John Mueller stepped onto a podium full of camera's to declare Code Alert Megalon in light of a new threat to America, Al Qaeda cells full of murderous terrorists with the disturbing ability to resemble Europeans.
Unknown at press time is how exactly these Al Queda cells manage this feat..uhhh...do you think he is referring to us?
Anyway, even the don't ask Don't tell press coverage the AG usually gets when his doctors fail to up his dosage at regular intervals was full of uncomfortable questions. You see, none of the information provided by the AG was new, in fact, it had been released to the public for months.
Virtually none of the information provided in the Lord Ascroftamort's press briefing was new. Even more curious, no one from the Department of Homeland Security and their Monster Movie chief, Dr Frankenstein, was present at the briefing.
When in a rare burst of journalistic curiosity people asked DHS why they played hooky, apparently no one at the department, including the head of it, was aware that the Attorney General was going to raise the Alert Level from Godzilla to Megalon.
So let me get this straight. The Attorney General sticks his frightening grill onto my television screen to crank up the threat level when he has no fresh Intel to share, and when the department nominally in charge of determining threats and responding to them hasn't been told the AG is going to do this?
Memo to the Bush Administration: If you want the American people to believe you are competent on domestic security issues, the flunkies you have in charge of that task really should be and act competent.
Not even the mighty Wurlitzer of Darth Melman or Rove Sideous can disguise the fact that the Attorney General was caught red-handed peddling recycled intelligence to the press Corp as a new revelation in an attempt to spook ma and pa kettle into suffocating themselves in their trailer homes sealed in duct tape and plastic sheeting to prevent the Al Queda Devil Rain from melting their faces off like some cheap seventies Shatner horror movie. Must...Ductape...trailer....
Unfortunately, the Attorney General escaped from his crypt yet again last week when he and a select group of cronies decided to release a list of charges about Jose Padilla. To those of you who are just jumping onto the Wire Bandwagon along with the hordes of other wire clones, let's step into the wayback machine.
Jose Padilla is the American Citizen that the FBI nabbed shortly after 9/11. The FBI claimed he had numerous contacts with Al Queda and participated in the planning and execution of the 9/11 plot. Padilla is an American citizen arrested on American Soil Nevertheless, the Administration declared him an enemy combatant and shipped him off without access to a lawyer, no preliminary hearing.
This is consistent with the Administrations exciting new contribution to American Jurisprudence; Habeas Corpus and the Bill of Rights is just some meaningless drivel from some 18th Century American Hippies. For heavens sake, didn't you know the Enlightenment started in France, home of the liberty fry? ZOOT ALORS!
The ability of the Administration to designate Padilla and other American citizens as Enemy combatants and whisk them off without hearing or access to counsel is under consideration by the Supreme Court. In fact, the Court is due to hand down a decision here in a few weeks on this.
S. So it's passing suspicious that the Attorney General should decide to release a horde of information that he claims was obtained from Padilla during his captivity. According to Lord Ashcroft, Padilla has conspired with Al Queda leaders and traveled with them on multiple occasions that he tried to work and train with Al Queda, and a variety of other charges related to his relationship with Al Queda.
Their contention basically is that Padilla is a bad guy who although was a bench warmer on the Al Queda Team, was ready to jump in and hit a big shot for them...04 baby!
It's been one of the great revelations for the editorial staff here at the Wire that whenever you think the Bush Administration has so debased itself they cannot devolve anymore, along comes a new level of awful that could only come from the diabolically stupid mind of John Ashcroft.
Not only is this a teenage moot court attempt to sway the Supremes, what possible store should we put in any information extracted from the Padilla when he was held incommunicado without lawyer or judicial review. Just weeks after we Abu Gharib pictures, is the AG Sure he wants to pimp us that Padilla provided correct information without the Limbaugh "hazing " they practiced at the Abu Gharib chapter of Skull and Bones?
Under American law, nothing obtained from Padilla is admissible, since he was never appraised or granted a single right that his rightfully his under law. Dalia Lathwick in Slate lays out why this notion of rights for suspect Al Queda Devil Rainmakers is more than just a Blue State Whining:
The U.S. Constitution didn't simply hatch out of an egg one morning. Like the Magna Carta, the Bill of Rights was largely conceived to correct for failures of earlier systems. In 1603 Sir Walter Raleigh was tried for treason and not permitted to cross-examine his accuser
This, it turns out, engendered unreliable evidence. The Sixth Amendment's confrontation clause was the constitutional remedy for this problem. Unremitting and unwanted prosecutorial interrogation could lead to false confessions. This made for unreliable evidence. The Fifth Amendment was, in part, the constitutional remedy for this.
Years of delay prior to trials degraded evidence. The Sixth Amendment's right to a speedy trial was the constitutional remedy for this. Indefinite government detention without charges led to innocent men languishing in prison without recourse. The right to habeas corpus is thus codified in Article I, Section 9 of the Constitution to remedy this.
We sometimes forget that the purpose of these and other constitutional protections is not only to let guilty guys roam free (attractive though that prospect may seem), the purpose is also to protect the quality of the evidence used in criminal trials. A conviction based on a tortured confession isn't justice. It's theater.
And that 's exactly what AG Ashocroftamar and his monkey's have been practicing since 9/11, theater. A wretched Kabuki theater where American's do not possess the inalienable rights declared by Tom Jefforson in the Declaration, but are grudgingly granted at the whim of political appointees in Republican Administrations who wouldn't wipe their ass with the Bill of Rights, let alone respect it as living document and roadmap to the American value system.
Jeeesus! We're going to have to strap down every Jefferson statue in American to keep them from animating into life to exact a wretched monster movie justice on us for pissing away our rights to a demented religious zealot and his fear mongers in the DOJ and DOD who hate democracy like a bad case of foot fungus they would rather cut their feet off for than allow to grow and fester.
The Supremes need to summon the mighty spirits of the Founders and direct a bolt of soul crushing celestial lighting to the wonderlicks like the Solicitor General who pimped them the horrible lie that the Administration would never abuse their authority over people they hold in captivity.
Jose Padilla may indeed be a bad guy, but this administration doesn't know the difference between the Padilla's and the European looking enemies posing as political opponents. That's why we have a bill of rights and that's why this AG should not be allowed anywhere near or legal institutions.
Somebody change their passwords and get their IDs , they need to be given 15 minutes to clean out their desk before Security throws them through a plate glass window..preferably head first....
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…