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Delusions For Everyone!

Friday, Sept. 21, 2007 1:05 AM

In the wake of yesterday's defeat of both the Webb amendment and the Restore Habeas Corpus measure, Republicans nonetheless had enough clout to pass a second measure denouncing for their juvenile stunt ad calling General Petraeus, 'General Betray Us.'

And that was without a minor change proposed by Senator Barbara Boxer that would have ultimately included the Swift Boat Ads slamming Senator John Kerry's service in Vietnam (but also, ultimately, placed military officers in a sacrosanct position).

So while other liberals are still patting themselves on the back for how clever the ad was, and how it brought the issues into the spotlight (like, um, America forgot we were at war?), I maintain - and feel that my point has been proven quite adequately - that the ad did absolutely nothing to frame or otherwise advance the issue of ending the Iraq War. Two important votes split largely among party lines, and the one that gets the most airplay is the waste-of-time condemnation of MoveOn's ad.

Others are even sniping at General Wesley Clark, who made a similar point, that if they'd stuck to the facts and left out the bad pun, they might have gotten the positive attention they wanted.

Time to dust off the old 'we need the USA PATRIOT Act' arguments and hitch 'em to the Protecting America Act. (Through which, by removing the need for warrants, is supposed to protect our civil liberties.)

President Bush held a news conference yesterday, in which he solemnly pointed out that the Protecting America Act expires in January, 'the threat from terrorism won't.'

Which completely ignores a small detail - that the potential terrorist threat against the U.S. Capitol, which ultimately swayed sufficient votes to pass the thrice-damned act in the first place ... turned out to be nothing but hot air.

Though they didn't admit it until after the vote.

(I fully expect the 'sunset clause' to be another roll-over and beg for a cookie moment by the Democrats.)

It's funny how the Bush campaign was all over Al Gore for exaggerating or lying about his achievements, but Mr. Bush can't be honest about his own.

"I think I got a B in Econ," he said while touting his tax cuts.

Actually, he got a C. (Personally, I'm more likely to remember the bad grades, which for me included C's, than the good grades.)

Speaking of which, Mr. Bush responds to a later question by affirming that, "The tax cuts worked. The economy recovered. People are working. Interest rates are low."

Mr. Bush, when the Fed is cutting rates, it's not because your tax cuts worked. It's slapping a defibrilator against the economy and shocking it to keep it from going tits up.

And in our next stop visiting Bush Fantasy Land ...

"I heard someone say, 'Where's Mandela?' Well, Mandela is dead, because Saddam Hussein killed all the Mandelas."

Quite a throw in trying to illustrate how Saddam crushed dissent. And where did our fair-haired candidates like Ahmad Chalabi and Ayad Allawi come from, if dissent was smashed to pieces?

The real Nelson Mandela is alive and well, and he doesn't think we're doing the right thing in Iraq.

It's interesting that Mr. Bush won't comment on Israel's bombing of Syria's alleged nuclear facilitiy. He even snappishly told NBC's David Gregory that he wouldn't comment on it.

The conspiracy theory mill is at work � apparently several Air Force personnel apparently involved in the Minott AFB 'missing nukes' incident are now dead, from various causes.

It's bad enough that the Air Force lost track of the damned things. And it's amusing, in a sick and twisted way, to consider the government plotting either a covert nuclear strike on Iran, or a false-flag terrorist attack inside the United States ... but let's not get too far off base here, please.

And Dan Rather has filed a $70 million lawsuit against CBS executives, claiming his treatment in the wake of the Bush National Guard story was unfair.

CBS responded by saying Rather's allegations are old news and the suit is without merit.

They'd better hope so. Rather's been with CBS for a long time, and I'm sure there's some dirt to be had. If he can show there were other instances where reporters or anchors were not held accountable in the same manner, he may have a good case.

Note that the suit is not about the factual content of the story (which Rather still believes is essentially true � that Bush dodged his commitment to the Guard/received preferential treatment), but about CBS' subsequent treatment of him.

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