Bush, Advisers Crafting New Iraq Policy At Gathering They Say Is "Non-Decisional"
by Tony Peyser
The basic thing here
That's seriously absurd
Is not even a word.
As the New Year approaches, we are told that the President is considering the deployment of tens of thousands of additional troops to Iraq in the desperate hope of subduing the burgeoning civil war there.
This is a chilling prospect that threatens to compound the tragic mistakes he has already made over the last four years.
In 2002, I strongly opposed the invasion of Iraq because I felt it was an ill-conceived venture which I warned would "require a U.S. occupation of undetermined length, at undermined cost, with undetermined consequences." I said then that an invasion without strong international support could drain our military, distract us from the war with al-Qaeda in Afghanistan and further destabilize the Middle East.
Summaries are excerpted from the source articles; the featured article follows the summary section. A recommended "site of the day" will also appear occasionally following the summaries.
Smokers, people with alcohol problems and the obese could be denied priority treatment on the NHS if they do not try to change their lifestyle. The Cabinet is discussing the controversial idea as part of a drive by Tony Blair to secure his domestic political legacy by pushing through a final round of public service reforms before he departs next year. Ministers will confront a panel of 100 ordinary people with some of the "tough choices" facing the Government under a consultation exercise giving the public a direct say in the new policies. One question will be whether people whose lifestyle makes them ill should get the same priority as other patients. This would mean changing NHS guidelines saying that people should not be discriminated against "even if their illnesses are to some extent self-inflicted". ... Downing Street sources said no decisions had been taken on whether to change the guidelines and stressed that the public would be asked their views on the issue first. The suggestion is bound to provoke criticism. Forest, the pro-smoking group, has claimed that some smokers have already suffered discrimination. It argues that tobacco revenues, which bring in £7bn a year for the Government, dwarf the cost of smoking-related illness.
A BUZZFLASH GUEST CONTRIBUTION
by Cindy Sheehan
Gerald Ford, our 38th and first ever un-elected President is dead. All of the networks and cable news are rightfully filled with stories on his legacy and life. The pundits are analyzing his presidency and I have heard comments like: "great sense of humor," "gentleman," and "protector of the Constitution." The first two, are nice, but not such urgent Presidential qualities, and really are objective traits. Being someone who protects the Constitution, as every president swears to do, but few (especially the current resident of the Oval Office) actually do, should be a mandatory item in every president's job description.
Nick Schou's 'Kill the Messenger' Probes the CIA, the Crack Cocaine Trade, and a Journalist 's Untimely DeathWritten by BuzzFlash
A BUZZFLASH INTERVIEW
If you had tried to write a story ten years ago arguing that the CIA was promoting or practicing torture, you'd be looked at as some kind of reconstructed Marxist or something like that. And now you can read about that every day in the major newspapers. -- Nick Schou
* * *
Nick Schou, an editor at Orange County Weekly, reviews and analyzes the remarkable and tragic story of Gary Webb, an investigative reporter who wrote a shell-shocking, three-part series for the San Jose Mercury News in 1996 about the CIA's controversial connection to Nicaraguan Contras selling crack cocaine in the United States. The mainstream media attacked and vilified Gary Webb for this reporting. Webb left the Mercury News after the paper distanced themselves from the story, and he was never able to find another job in journalism. He killed himself two years ago.
The saddest part is that Gary's story was eventually proved to be true, including admissions by the CIA that the agency did have ties and knowledge of a drug smuggling operation in the United States, but simply turned a blind eye to the drug trafficking operation.
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Subject: NOT the 'Only President Never Elected'
With the death of Gerald Ford, the mainstream media is claiming that he was the only "president" never elected either president or vice president. That, of course, is completely untrue.
The abomination currently polluting the White House was never elected president, as both the 2000 and 2004 elections were stolen.
Staten Island, NY
Get Me Rewrite On This Headline!
by Tony Peyser
"Bush In Texas To Rethink Iraq Course"
Is the headline at Associated Press
Yeah, right, like anybody believes he
Won't lead us deeper into this mess.
Bah humbug everybody. Consider that uttered in the spirit of those of us familiar with the soft dark underbelly of the happiest time of the year. The ones regularly washed over by the holiday faucet of red and green bile dreading the solstice celebration as it drips down the drain of melancholy revealing the regurgitated fruit of of our greed and gluttony. But then again, what the hell. Pass me a cookie and another glass of nog and let's just enjoy the whole thing, shall we? And go easy on the nutmeg and heavy on the whiskey, mister. Because its time to just sit back and relax. Xmas is still with us, as we are repeatedly reminded by the television ads partially obscured by the coffee table high wrapping paper detritus. So to honor all you brave and steadfast consumers who set new records this year in your patriotic quest to sink heavily into debt to honor the birth of that Jewish hippie kid, let me offer up to the least deserving of us my annual scathingly incisive yet perennially trenchant ...
Death Toll In Iraq Now Surpasses U.S. Losses On 9/11
by Tony Peyser
I can guess the White House's response
Even in my deepest slumber:
"There's no need for us to focus on this
Move on; it's just a number."
A BUZZFLASH GUEST CONTRIBUTION
by Brent Budowsky
It is easy to forget, especially for those who are younger, that American politics in 2006 is not the way it has been, and not the way it should be.