Blog Archives

I listened to Repub candidates propose that we could be invaded from Iran…

…but, although the USA professes itself menaced by Iran, it rather has Iran encircled by military bases:

Stars = US Bases

(thanks to Juan Cole‘s Informed Comment.)

So what I want to know is which of these Repub candidates has any kind of grasp on mid-east policy? Certainly Iran knows that they can be completely wiped out by us with little or no provocation.


Juan Cole points out the amazing changes that will happen in Congressional Committees…

Rep. John Shimkus

Shimkus of Illinois

… in particular the Energy and Commerce Committee where John Shimkus (R – IL) is seeking the Chairmanship:

Rep. John Shimkus (R-Ill.), who will seek the Energy and Commerce Committee chairmanship maintains that we do not have to worry about climate change because God promised in the Bible not to destroy the world again after Noah’s flood.

The video I posted got pulled by YouTube as ‘spam’, which it isn’t, so I presume Google was successfully trolled; but I found another one; unfortunately it has added expletive subtitles for which I apologize.

YouTube has the video:

About half the newly elected Congressmen are climate deniers (and if past experience is any guide, about a third of them are criminals).

You know how climate change deniers are always saying that in past geological ages carbon dioxide reached 1000 parts per million or more in the atmosphere, with no dramatic effect on the world’s temperatures? Yeah, just an increase of 2.5 to 5 degrees.

– Juan Cole

I know we’ll be much more secure knowing that God will protect us from Global Warming (I wonder if God was trying to protect the Dinosaurs… just like I wonder how Jonah survived being dissolved by stomach acid in the Whale’s digestive tract.) How did America vote these idiots into power?

I am so happy that we have Juan Cole to keep our focus on what’s happening here… he is a major star in the blogosphere.

Juan Cole, too! Most of the best bloggers on the web have made support statements for Olbermann…

…and many, me included, are just not going to turn MSNBC back on unless Olbermann is restored.

Here’s part of Juan Cole‘s LONG piece… get all of it HERE:

That Olbermann is being treated unfairly is obvious. Joe Scarborough has also donated to a political campaign while at MSNBC. And Sean Hannity at Fox has given far more money to candidates than Olbermann ever did. In fact, Hannity donated to Michele Bachmann, which suggests he is better suited to playing a bit part in a remake of the Night of the Living Dead than to anchoring a major ‘news’ show.

Hell, most of the main Republican candidates for president are working for Fox Cable News! So it goes beyond giving some campaign a couple thousand dollars, nowadays!

Fox argues that Hannity is not a news anchor but the equivalent of an op-ed columnist, a purveyor of opinions, and so may also be a political actor.

But MSNBC has already marked Olbermann also as an opinion person, not a hard news anchor, when it took him off election coverage in 2008. So MSNBC has put Olbermann in the same category as Fox has put Hannity. But one is on the air and the other is not.

MSNBC has a long history of throwing liberals under the bus, despite its recent strategy of trying to use them to counter-program against Fox.

In the build-up to the Iraq War, MSNBC had Phil Donahue, whose evening magazine show was the highest-rated thing on the network. As the momentum for war built, the top corporate management became very nervous about having a show starring an anti-war liberal, so they fired Donahue Rick Ellis wrote at the time that General Electric-owned NBC had commissioned a study of its public image, and that the consultants produced a report in which they wrote, that Donahue was a “difficult public face for NBC in a time of war……He seems to delight in presenting guests who are anti-war, anti-Bush and skeptical of the administration’s motives.” The report worried that the war fever would benefit rival, pro-war, pro-Bush networks and implied that Donahue might succeed in branding NBC in a way that caused viewership and therefore advertising revenues to plummet.

MSNBC replaced Donahue with far right wing shock jock Michael Savage, Dick Armey and Republican Joe Scarborough (who went on to donate to a Republican politician while on the air).

Another Quote for the Day – thinking about Iraq

“Certainly, Iraq is on the road to being an independent nation, though how much American neo-imperialism is imposed on Baghdad remains to be seen. Now if only Iraq had a government.”

– Juan Cole commenting on the President’s speech last night (and a great essay which you should read.)

Juan Cole summarizes Top 10 Good Stories from the Muslim World…

clipped from

Top Ten Good News Stories from the Muslim World in 2009 that You Never Heard About

10. Saudi Arabia opened its first coeducational college campus, the King Abdullah Science and Technology University.
9. Qatar is on track to average 7.5 percent per annum growth for the next few years.
8. A Pew Forum on Religion and Life poll finds that American Muslims are unusual in the degree to which they are integrated into mainstream American society
7. The information revolution is making strides in the Arab world. A University of Maryland Poll finds that “the use of the internet continued to grow
6. Albania has averaged 10 percent a year growth for each of the last four years, and was the fastest-growing economy in Europe in 2009. It held elections in 2009, and although they were imperfect, an EU report described them [pdf] “as meeting most OSCE commitments,” despite flaws.

  blog it

Juan Cole comments on the failed plane bomber…

This is a clip from a longer article… but I agree with Juan. Abd al-Mutallib was not a sophisticated bomber and was probably trying to get attention from Al Qaida.

A piece of the article here:

clipped from

The details of the attempted attack on the Amsterdam/ Detroit flight Friday are still murky and I don’t trust the only official from whom we are hearing details, Rep. Peter King of New York. The LAT says Homeland Security is now downplaying the purported al-Qaeda or Yemen connection around which rumors swirled earlier Friday, saying that the al-Qaeda thing may have been “aspirational”.

Umar Farouk Abd al-Mutallib, 23, a Nigerian engineering student at the University College of London, took the flight from Lagos Nigeria to Amsterdam and thence to Detroit. Someone set him up with a leg pouch filled with an incendiary chemical that was supposed to set a big fire on board when he injected it with chemicals from a syringe.

It was a replay of the shoe bomber episode, in other words, and suspiciously enough occured on the anniversary of the Richard Reid attempt.
No cause for complaisance here, but contrary to what rightwing politicians are saying, no cause for panic, either.
blog it

…and a Quote for Sunday Morning:

“The right in the U.S. objected to Obama getting the Peace Prize on the alleged grounds that he had not yet done anything to deserve it. But the right in the United States is to peace as velociraptors were to vegetarianism.”

Juan Cole in Salon

Thanks for the post, Juan. This was a very good view of Rupert Murdoch and his coterie of true anti-Americans. And why we are letting an Australian hatemonger run an entire aspect of American politics in order to make big bucks is beyond me.

The Two Joe Wilsons…

Juan Cole has a wonderful essay at his blog Informed Content this morning. All the press coverage of the South Carolina Republican Joe Miller and his unfortunate harassment of President Obama may have made you forget the other Joe Miller who was smeared by the Bush Administration and whose wife, Valerie Plame, had her career destroyed.

Juan also has what may be the best quote of the day:

“We only need the one kind of Joe Wilson, the one who shouts “truth” to lies; not the one who shouts “lies” to the truth.”

Go HERE for the essay.