Friday, September 26, 2003

CrimQuips 9/26/03

Commentary by Barry Crimmins


"You can't make 15 gaffes a week and be president." --Sen. John Kerry (speaking of Gov. Howard Dean) ....Get serious, John. Bush makes at least 15 gaffes per speech and he holds the office.(albeit hostage, but still!)

The Wall Street Journal hosted a Democratic presidential debate Thursday. By comparison, the blues series on PBS is a perfect demographic fit .

Wesley Clark looked like a general at yesterday's debate. He clung dearly to the back-lines while the others slugged it out at the front.

I'm willing to give Clark time to find his political legs but there is nothing wrong with examining what he has said and comparing it to what he's saying. And there is nothing wrong about having qualms about supporting anyone who ever thought Ronald Reagan was OK. What's absurd are the assaults by people such as those cranked up by twitchy Ann Coulter that question the decorated war hero's patriotism.

I actually heard Limbaugh imply that Clark's candidacy was that of a nut general intent on overthrowing our democratic government. Uh, Rush, General Clark is entering the race to democratically unseat the Nam-era deserter that currently occupies the White House despite the fact he lost the election.

Clark and the rest of the Dems are trying to reverse a coup d'etat, not stage one.

Anyone who wants to attempt to tarnish Howard Dean as "ultra-left" really needs to be referred to my website. I'll show 'em left.

I love watching Dems slug it out. Substantive questions and challenges will only make the field stronger. If you want to listen to people say "ditto" all day, turn on Rush Limbaugh.

The response to Bush's speech before the UN General Assembly breathed new life into the word "tepid."

The UN headsets that translate speech into the various languages came in very handy because without them, W would have had to learn to lie in dozens of languages.

There are more people on the California ballot than there are people who bought anything that Bush said in that speech.

Coming up on C-SPAN: George W Bush's address to the UN General Assembly, and then Hugh Hefner's keynote remarks to the Christian Coalition, followed by Rush Limbaugh's speech to the AFL-CIO.

Ariel Sharon may soon decide to lay off the Palestinians and concentrate on Mel Gibson.

Senator Robert Byrd has been a Washington insider for decades and West Virginia has never lacked so much as one pork barrel during those years. However, in his final days of public service the aged Senator has distinguished himself in such a manner that has overshadowed all of his insider sins. His moral stand against W's war and his recent performance questioning the advocates of Bush's deepening quagmire, should have caught the attention of the Nobel Peace Prize committee. It has been a pleasure to see an actual statesman stand up and tell crucial truth at a time when very few politicians have shown the courage to give voice to grave questions. And old Teddy Kennedy hasn't been far behind. They have both done this nation and the Senate proud.

Here's a few questions Arnold Schwarzenegger might be asked about his past: Did you even own any pants during your first twenty years in Hollywood? If so, did you ever wear them?

Arnold makes Bill Clinton look like Cotton Mather.


Today's extended riff.....

Here's an idea that would save Americans trillions of dollars, and more importantly, many, many lives. Quite simply, we must abandon any hopes for national health insurance.

You see, we don't need health insurance, we need health care. We need to divest health care of insurance racketeers. Run the bastards out of town, they have killed more of us than any terrorist ever will.

To employ the word "insurance" in this crucial context is to take a massive portion of our health care dollar and fritter it away without providing one sick person so much as one Kleenex tissue.

Each day more people discover they can no longer afford health insurance and/or the insurance they have is all but worthless. Soon only the ultra-wealthy will have any legitimate coverage at all. This means the insurance racket has priced itself out of health care. So good riddance to health insurance and hello national health CARE.

Health is a wonderful word. Why marry it to latter day pejorative like insurance?

Care is unconditional; insurance must be claimed. Sick and injured people aren't generally in a good position to stake out and hold claims. HMO's and other health care racketeers first line of defense is to reject all claims out-of-hand. That's all it takes to get rid of people too weak to take a stand. This is barbarism.

Health insurance policies are full of fine print that explain why they really needn't pay any claim. Of course no one can read the fine print because most health plans cut eye care a long time ago.

From the anecdotal evidence I have gathered over a lifetime of knowing human beings -- each one replete with the human propensity to fall prey to injury, illness and mortality -- I can say with some confidence that health insurance companies spend at least as much money developing reasons to deny claims as they do paying for actual health care. We all know people who have been put through inhumane ordeals by corporate bureaucrats. In fact, health insurance claims adjusters often privately refer to themselves as "claims deniers."

The insurance racket takes highly trained medical personnel and turns them into nothing more than claims adjustors and efficiency experts. Mind you, that so-called "efficiency" has nothing to do with health care and everything to do with the proverbial bottom line. As a result, that bottom line too often ends up located "six feet under."

For all intents and purposes, the health insurance racket sends sick and injured people to a casino rather than a hospital. Everything at that casino is rigged in the house's favor and the insurance racket is the house. Just as slot-machine suckers pay for the electricity that courses through the gigantic signs in Vegas, the dupes who pay health insurance premiums are footing the bill for the advertising hacks, public relations glad-handers and slithering lobbyists that work around the clock to sanitize the nefarious scam that is health insurance.

The casino comparison is somewhat unfair to the gaming industry. It employs one-armed bandits while the health care racket always uses two hands when frisking and robbing us.

Many "uninsured" people, harboring hopes of getting a health care plan, avoid doctors lest they be diagnosed with what the insurance racket labels as a "pre-existing condition" The more desperate your need for treatment, the more proof the criminals have that your claim is invalid. This has got to end.

Unguarded, the insurance cabal will label "human frailty" as a pre-existing condition and never have to approve another claim.

Health insurance is a big protection racket but when illness comes and smashes our windows, the protection disappears. Why not just make the racket disappear, instead?

America cannot afford health insurance; it cannot live without health care.

So ask your favorite presidential candidate to support national health care, the humane and economic alternative to national health insurance.


My ideal candidate would support national health care, not insurance and hold strong anti-quagmire views concerning Iraq. I shall continue to add to this idealistic platform as time goes by. If we don't demand the sky, we will never gain control of the earth. Let's provoke the candidates to compromise with the left on a few things -- that way the next Democratic president will be less likely to promote phony stuff like welfare reform because he or she will have to worry about viable criticism from beyond the milquetoasty center.


When you think Blues, of course you think PBS. I can't seem to find my old "Howling Wolf -- Live at the Yacht Club" LP but perhaps it will now be reissued. If so, lets hope Martin Scorsese gets the top billing he deserves.

A lot of the CD's they are issuing in conjunction with the series are of music that's in the public domain. What the hell, the musicians didn't get any royalties the first time they recorded the tunes, why start now? (Seriously, I hope PBS is funneling all profits to any relatives they can find of the great artists they are hoping to ride to Nielson glory.

I'll leave you with this rare work-in-progress, left to me by an old bluesman great uncle of mine.

Pine Box Set Blues

By Blind Typo Crimmins

My turbo Saab's fuel injection
got jammed with too much grit
I got home from the tennis club,
but left my cardigan sweater back at it

And the mean old feds just shut
my inside trading tipster on down
now the fall pledge drive's on us
Lawd I got no premium to be found.

plink, plink, plink, plink, plink, plink , plink , plink , plink , plink, plink , plink , plink ... Oh yeah

What ever will become of me?
Them fleece pullovers ain't free
No PBS phone's gonna ring today
Can't make no pledge, what can I say?

I got the sanitized and wholesome
Public Broadcasting Blues
I got the Ken-Burnsing deep in my soul
Public Broadcasting Blues
PBS take credit for all good things:
Mark Twain, jazz and baseball, too

plink, plink, plink, plink, plink, plink , plink , plink , plink , plink, plink , plink , plink ... Oh yeah

PBS want us to believe that
it stand for Po Boy Sound
I said, PBS want us to believe
it stand for Po Boy Sound
When we get down to the crossroads
it's their tote bag we be carrying 'round

PBS let po artists suffer
so they blues, they be real
PBS let em starve and suffer
'til their blues can't be concealed
When they die and go to public domain
PBS make a special Pine Box Set deal

plink, plink, plink, plink, plink, plink , plink , plink , plink , plink, plink , plink , plink ... Oh yeah

Oh lawd, lawd, what's gonna happen to me?
Them fleece pullovers sho' ain't free
Pledge Driver waiting for my dough
ain't never getting back to the show

PBS want us to believe
it stand for Poor Boy Sound
PBS want us to believe
it stand for Poor Boy Sound
But it really stand for white boys
who done waited much too long to come 'round

plink, plink, plink, plink, plink, plink , plink , plink , plink , plink, plink , plink , plink ... Oh yeah

Wednesday, September 17, 2003

CrimQuips 9/17/03

Commentary by Barry Crimmins


The question is not if you are (or were) "anti-war," the question is: are you "pro-quagmire?"

Bush's offer to the UN: Come on in, the quagmire is fine! And I'm a great lifeguard!

Of course the UN should take control of Iraq for a quick transfer of power to the Iraqi people. The only thing the United States has to lose by leaving Iraq in the hands of the UN is control over the natural resources of that nation. We do not need to control Iraq's oil. What we need to control is our own gluttonous consumption of oil.

If you drive an SUV or giant pickup -- and don't have a very good reason for doing so -- this quagmire is for you!

The USA should take half of the $87 billion W is requesting for his quagmire, earmark it for Iraq, hand it to the UN and say "we are pulling out because we understand that the provocative presence of US troops is doing no one -- particularly the Iraqi people and US troops -- any good." Such a sane move would immediately dampen the radical Islamic case.

$43.5 billion would go a lot further towards rebuilding Iraq than the $87 billion that would mostly end up in Halliburton's vault.

Americans who drive SUV's for no legitimate reason should be made to put them to good use by converting them into hearses to transport the remains of the soldiers who have died in Iraq for our needless over-consumption of oil.

Today's tip for motorists: You may not need a four-wheel drive vehicle; you may just need four snow tires. People have been hoodwinked into believing the myth of "all-season" radial tires. Radial tires are only "all-season" in places like Florida and Central America -- but if you get much snow at all, you still need snow tires. Many a sucker has gone from all-season radials to a Mammothmobile because they believed it was the only way to survive winter driving. I use really good radial snow tires on my compact Ford and zoom past stuck SUV's all winter. I saved about $32,000 in the process and that's BEFORE I get to a gas pump. And I don't need a war to get me to the grocery store.


Although all but one of the Democratic presidential candidates would provide a vast improvement over George W. Bush (and the other one would represent at least a slight improvement), I have been asked by people to comment more directly on the current Dem field. So here goes...

Governor Howard Dean-- Has done a great job using the internet to make his candidacy viable. Good on health care. Questionable on the environment (pro- Yucca Mt nuke dump? Please!) He says he sees no way we can cut Pentagon budget so I guess he really is a tax and spend liberal! Has betrayed his original anti-war base with his pro-quagmire stance, a cynical move to demonstrate his"electability." At this stage of the game the doctor is out of my top choices.

Reverend Al Sharpton -- Consistently takes some of the best stands on issues and (from what I am hearing) the worst money from right-wing extremists who are attempting to manipulate him into flummoxing Democratic African-American voting strength by creating a racial schism. I trust Al knows better than to try to do that. Anti-quagmire.

Representative Dennis Kucinich- Telling the truth makes a person a long shot in this game. Passionately anti-quagmire and the is the only one speaking out in articulate terms against the multinational racket called "globalization." I think he'll make a stronger than expected showing in Iowa and bring crucial issues into the mix in the process. Despite the attempted (and fairly successful) censorship of his message with conventional wisdom that "he can never win," Dennis Kucinich is the best the in field. You can't have progress without progressives and DK is a true progressive. (And yes, he has got to lose Moe Howard's barber)

Senator John Edwards- Announced his candidacy after running for several months -- and he needed to! His choice to make that announcement on a day when a hurricane was headed for his North Carolina constituents demonstrated he is a single-minded pol. The single thing his mind appears to be political ambition. His failed prez bid may well hurt the Dems and the country by costing a Senate seat to the Gluttonous Old Pigs. His only hope for an immediate political future seems to be as a region-balancing VP choice but even that doesn't even make a lot of sense. Staunchly pro-quagmire.

General Wesley Clark-- OK, he's smart but he must think we're stupid if we don't know he has been anything but anti-war. Read his 4-10-03 London Times column celebrating Bush and Blair's "victory." Better yet, read Fair's excellent compendium of Clark's comments on the war as it unfolded, transpired and allegedly ended. Moderately pro-quagmire.

Senator Bob Graham-- Consistently anti-war, consistently dubious about Bush's version of 9/11. Former Florida Governor Barbecue Bob has been consistently wrong on the death penalty. But I guess we could live with that since he can't be any more wrong than Bush -- the leading cause of death in the Southwest during his term as Texas governor. Tepidly anti-quagmire.

Senator Carol Mosley Braun-- In it to mess up Sharpton but certainly not because she is secretly receiving money from the left! Her close ties with the late Nigerian dictator Sani Abacha has already cost the Dems a Senate seat. Unsure where she stands on quagmire but happy to stand in one, when it comes to ethics.

Senator John Kerry- Still has a chance to wake up and catch fire but if it's only to mouth his thus far globalist message, he should simply stay home and help his wife count money. Still, he could really fry Bush's Nam-era military bacon. Pro-quagmire.

Representative Dick Gephardt- Extremely pro-war, pro-quagmire. Although his acceptability to the criminal Jr. Hoffa Teamster regime flicks on several warning lights, he is very good on labor issues. A sure cure for insomnia a stump speaker. If he runs the country with the ineptitude with which he ran the House, it will mean four troubled years. Once I sat between Gore and Gephardt at a luncheon. By comparison, he made Gore seem delightful and intriguing. Mad Magazine has a word for people like Gephardt: Blecch!

Senator Joe Lieberman- Bought and paid for shill of the insurance industry. Took Enron money. To the right of the Likud Party on the Israeli/Palestinian issue. Rabidly pro-war and pro-quagmire. One of the most reprehensible politicians in America, which is saying a lot. The only worse V-P candidate in recent history was Dick Cheney. The day could be 48 hours long and there still wouldn't be enough time for Joe Lieberman to suck as much as he sucks. If the Dems nominate him, sane people would be left no choice but to leave the country before the election.


Pro-quagmire Democrats are just auditioning for the role of LBJ.

The nearly $160 billion Bush has spent and plans to spend on his war/occupation represents nothing more than the misuse of public funds to guarantee Dick Cheney's Halliburton pension.

What does Cheney need a pension plan for anyway? The guy has already died about four times.

Cheney's "deferred payments" from Halliburton will be footed by the next several generations of Americans - - providing the country even survives that long after what the court-appointed Bush administration does to it.

We could have national healthcare for the money that is spent keeping Cheney undead.

And just how much dough will Lynn Cheney need to enjoy her waning years of despising humanity once medical science and special effects wizards run out of ways to keep her ghoulish spouse on the scene?

And when Lynn goes, where will the family fortune go? To their daughter's ultra-progressive Coors Rainbow Coalition?

Of course that rainbow will only have one stripe and you can bet it will be golden.

Give Shadow Emperor Cheney credit; he has proven to be the one person for whom neither death nor taxes seem inevitable.

There is only one way for the US to leave Iraq: USE THE EXITS.

The United States has enflamed the Middle East to the point where Ariel Sharon now thinks he has sufficient cover to call for the assassination of Yassar Arafat, a (regardless of what you think of him) democratically elected leader. If Sharon manages to slay Arafat then the Islamic world will have the mother of all martyrs and it'll be "al-Quadee bar the door."

How outraged would the media be if Yassar Arafat called for the assassination of Ariel Sharon?

All the US has done to protect American troops from increased casualties in Iraq has been to restrict their movements and concentrate their ranks. I seem to recall a similar strategy didn't work so well in Lebanon twenty or so years ago.

Thank goodness Nazi filmmaker Leni Reifenstahl lived long enough to see Karl Rove's lush footage of W on the aircraft carrier.

The only "lush footage" I want to see is that of Bush taking a field sobriety test in Maine.

Every time Bush gives a speech the only word he uses more often than "God" is "terror."

Bush can't be much of a Christian, considering how often he uses the "Lord's name in vain."

A recent New York Times piece, meant to be a cautionary tale about socialized medicine, told of how senior citizen/Medicare patients are clogging doctors' offices every time they have a question. Well perhaps if the pharmaceutical industry stopped spending millions and millions of dollars on advertising that implores people to "ask their doctor" if they should be on the latest high-priced concoction, there would be a great reduction in the number of visits to ask doctors questions. Also, the cost of all that advertising wouldn't be included in the price of pills. And then the doctor wouldn't dispense the damned things only to have the patients return, seeking new pills to combat all of the side effects the advertised products caused.

The problem isn't socialized medicine; the problem is privatized airwaves.

Besides, who the hell wants to take pills that come with the warning: May cause projectile diarrhea or death.

Ask your pusher if Fiscaldrainomene is right for you!

Republicans are outraged at the ACLU lawsuit that has slowed the California recall election. Yeah, taking the time to make sure everyone has an equal chance to vote in an election that is banking on a haphazard premise in the first place is downright un-American!

Augusto Pinochet didn't have to wait to take over Chile, why should Arnold wait to run California?

Did you catch Bush at the coal-burning power plant, where he was promoting clean air? Laura would have joined him but she was at a brothel promoting her pet cause: abstinence.

Just as many who were scoffed at for saying Bush was obviously already cynically exploiting 9/11 in the days after the terrorist attacks, have been proven correct and just as many who were scoffed at for saying W's planned assault on Iraq was based on hooey and would lead to a quagmire, have been proven correct; those who now say the only solution is to bring home the American troops are once again being scoffed at. Never fear, they will be proven to be correct. The moral of this story: it is better to be scoffed at by contemporary lemmings than to be vilified by history.

I caught Ann Coulter on TV last night and she looked twitchier and loopier than ever. She was riding a major "Eva Braun visits the Valley of the Dolls on a promotional tour for the amazing new diet solution anorexia!" vibe. Her self-destruction is picking up velocity and it will be interesting to see just when, how and where it culminates.

Tuesday, September 09, 2003

Special double issue

Commentary by Barry Crimmins

And now in response to Mr. Bush's speech, the United Nations, joined by the Surviving Iraqi Children's Chorale, will sing "Positively Fourth Street."

" ...and for just one moment, you could be in my lack of shoes"

"The terrorists thrive on the support of tyrants and the resentments of oppressed peoples. When tyrants fall, and resentment gives way to hope, men and women in every culture reject the ideologies of terror, and turn to the pursuits of peace. Everywhere that freedom takes hold, terror will retreat." -- George W. Bush, altruistically making the case against himself in next year's presidential election

"We have learned that terrorist attacks are not caused by the use of strength, they are invited by the perception of weakness." -- George W. Bush - Admitting that his occupation of Iraq is perceivably weak.

"From the outset, I have expressed confidence in the ability of the Iraqi people to govern themselves." George. W. Bush -- Oh yeah, we're supposed to believe Bush spends all his spare time just respecting the hell out of the Iraqi people.

The $87 billion W has demanded for continuing the occupation/war in Iraq (not to mention the $72 billion already spent and many, many billions more in bribes disguised as "foreign aid" that won't be counted) proves Bush is a disciple of the "you broke it, you bought it" school of thought.

Bush will really have to cut taxes to finance this one.

By one count, Bush used the word "terror" 26 times in his 15-minute speech. The only thing he does more often than that is lie.

Bush says he needs $87 billion to continue the quagmire in Iraq. To give you an idea of how much money $87 billion is: that's nearly 1/4 the amount in Dick Cheney's Secret Energy Buddies Slush Fund.

$87 billion is almost half of what Karl Rove plans to spend on attack ads next year.

$87 billion may seem like a lot of dough but in "quagmire dollars," it will evaporate more quickly than Bush's rationales for attacking Iraq.

The entire Vietnam War cost about $57 billion but that was back when a quagmire dollar was really worth something.

Now Bush is making preemptive strikes on the Treasury.

Judging by the reaction to his speech, the militaristic Bush outdid himself by dropping the biggest bomb ever.

In the speech, Bush characterized his war/occupation that has killed, maimed and injured thousands -- his war/occupation that drastically reduced the availability of vital commodities like electricity, food and water to millions of innocent people -- as "One of the most humane military campaigns in history." Oh yeah, you're killing them with kindness, Georgie.

What Bush really meant: They want us to leave but we won't leave until our job is done and every penny of this $87 billion, and then some, has been funneled to my political cronies.

The French ambassador to the UN should respond to the Bush request for occupation assistance by simply saying, "Let them eat Freedom Fries."

Alternative title for Bush speech: Retrofitting rationales for a failed war.

Apparently Bush thinks he will have an easy time bamboozling the UN into working as his auxiliary Nationalist Guard now that the UN officials who were most knowledgeable about the true situation in Iraq have been blown to smithereens, thanks to US provocation and incompetence.

Donald Rumsfeld disappointed millions when he went to a mass grave in Iraq for what turned out to only be a visit.


Rumsfeld's visit was part of an appearance he was making on the new game show for despots: Fill That Mass Grave!

"After a long absence, our first contestant has returned to the American political scene like an outbreak of herpes. Comfortable in quagmires in deserts, jungles or executive offices, please welcome Donald Rumsfeld! OK, Mr. Rumsfeld take a look at this freshly dug mass grave and tell us what we need to know."

"Thanks, Zip! I can fill that mass grave with one impatient lie at a press conference!"

" Ok, Donald Rumsfeld. Fill that mass grave!"


American officials should visit the mass graves they filled throughout Central America during the Reagan/ (elected)Bush years. But then again, the officials who promoted Death Squad Diplomacy are too busy in their work for W as terrorism- decrying hypocrites for them to return to their earlier foreign policy initiatives.

Rumsfeld also toured a torture chamber in Iraq, which he said gave him a lot of good Christmas-gift ideas for John Ashcroft.

Rumsfeld ordered the torture chamber disassembled and sent to Guantanamo Bay for "safekeeping."

According to the Pentagon, attacks on US troops in Iraq now average 15 per day-- up from 10 per day in July. But you've them right where you want him, eh, GW?

It's amazing how many people have drowned in Bush's "shallow recession."

Will someone, once and for all, please explain to the corporate media that there is no mystery about how the stock market can zoom while unemployment also accelerates? "Expert" after "expert" takes to the air absolutely befuddled because they subscribe to a superstition that states "if the stock market does well, we all do well." In fact the stock market is, if anything, a measure of how easy it is to screw workers. A corporation lays off workers and its stock goes up in value. If a corporation lowers wages and reduces benefits for workers, Wall St rewards those nefarious actions, as well. Although we are told spikes in the market mean we are all doing better they are often indicators that the real economy -- the economy that working people struggle to live in-- has just gotten worse. The more we kowtow to the bloodless, heartless demands of a market that wants to further enrich over-engorged stock manipulators by impoverishing workers (and former workers), the worse the real
economy becomes. Until Lou Dobbs learns that, he is no expert.

The common good and common shares have nothing in common.

Next week California will hold our nation's first Steel-cage gubernatorial debate.

There are ten commandments that should be carved in stone at every courthouse in America. They are called the "Bill of Rights."

How about that road map to peace! Just another success story from the court-appointed Bush administration.

Would someone please take Sen.John Kyl (Babbit- Arizona) camping, and leave him there.

When he arrives at the 2004 Republican Convention in New York City, George W. Bush will be cheered loudly, throughout the Bronx.

The upside of the RNC coming to NY in 2004: it means that the area's air will probably be safe to breath again by then.

A sentence you'll never see (but should) in upcoming reports: It wasn't terrorism that caused the August blackout, it was capitalism.

A commission of inquiry has found that Israeli police used excessive force on Palestinians during an insurrection three years ago. This is the most startling development since a panel revealed that there were some security breakdowns on 9/11.

The White House recently announced the creation of a new post: assistant secretary of commerce for manufacturing, which is the first manufacturing job Bush has created since (literally) taking office.

Of course assistant secretary of commerce for manufacturing is only a temp position until Bush can find a way to outsource the post to either the Dominican Republic or China.

Give Bush credit, his policies have put one group back to work that was hit hard after 9/11-- the Taliban.

For the good of the nation, South Dakota Congressman Bill "the Wheelman" Janklow should resign from the House and go to work as W's chauffeur.

Then again, Janklow has just the kind of qualifications that would tempt Bush to offer him the Secretary of Transportation job.

Donald Rumsfeld has asked that we be patient with the continuing military operations in Afghanistan and Iraq. Rumsfeld urging patience is like Dom Deluise endorsing fasting.

But Doomsday Don is right - you can't develop a good quagmire without patience. Quagmires take time.

On 9/8, under the headline "Older Workers are Thriving," the New York Times informed us that "A higher percentage of workers aged 55 to 64 hold jobs today than when the economy plunged into hard times in early 2001." This is because a lower percentage of Americans now have pension plans that provide for anything more than a greeter's job at Wal*Mart.

Kaiser Ashcroft is touring the country demanding that we continue to renounce our civil liberties by supporting the odious Patriot Act. He is receiving a warm response from hand-picked audiences of cops and soldiers. It the equivalent of speaking out against gravy at a dishwasher's convention.

The Patriot Act: with new and improved freedom! Now with fewer police restraints!

It's funny how the resignation of Abbas as Palestinian PM is supposedly the end of the "Roadmap to peace" but Sharon's announcement that he plans to KILL EVERYONE in Hamas is a piddling matter.


Acknowledgment- Today's quips are dedicated to the memory of Warren Zevon. Warren generously introduced me to his New England audiences by allowing me to open shows for him on numerous occasions, way back when. Warren offered this kindness matter-of-factly. When I tried to thank him, he simply suggested that I was deserving and there was nothing more to it. To this day, it's a rare New England appearance when some audience member doesn't inform me that they first began to follow my work because they'd seen me at a Warren Zevon show.

Zevon tackled both life and death with verve and genius. His witty courage during this past year made mortality a little less scary for the rest of us. He was a brilliant, hilarious and boundlessly talented person. His effervescent body of work is the cornerstone of a legacy that will guarantee that his incisive wit and wisdom will continue to incite and inform those left behind. Warren will always be missed but he will always be with us. -- Barry Crimmins


Today's quote from a sane person: Tyranny has always advertised itself as a form of freedom: it's no different today.- Al Giordano Narco News

Recent audio commentary from me is now available on my pal Scooter's deluxe guerilla audio website, Acksis of Evil http://acksisofevil.org full of subversive high tech hilarity.

Saturday, September 06, 2003

Draft of the remarks made by Barry Crimmins on WBAI Radio 9/4/03

W's Proudest Planks

A Foreign Quagmire and a Domestic Tragedy

Before we begin the fall offensive that will kick off the final 16 months of George W. Bush's term of stolen office, let's assess his current political circumstances.

Bush is counting on his assault on Iraq and his continued exploitation of the 9/11 attacks to help him become the first president to serve two full terms of office by winning only one election.

I don't like his chances. But I love ours!

Let's start by considering Iraq, which is more than W, his advisers and the lapdog corporate media did last winter. Bush lied, cajoled, bullied and bribed his way into a conflict that he believed would guarantee his place in history. It has. The court-appointed president will be remembered as an idiot for generations to come.

Leave it to Bush to stage a quagmire in a desert. This effort has required a few Great Lakes' worth of bottled water -- no doubt provided by Halliburton at retail rates marked up so high that they are also billing us for automatic pricing guns.

The billions that soak into that desert come from the same working people whose soldier sons and daughters are learning first-hand why the battle emblem for the occupation of Iraq should be the sitting duck. The funds W's corporate cronies siphon off this endeavor deprive those tens of thousands of soldiers, not to mention millions of Iraqis, of many basic human needs -- needs that any nation truly intent upon restoring human rights would have made A#1 priorities. Unfortunately W's only priority was to start a war.

Jr. actually believed that pulling into a few cities and occupying them meant that victory was his. But wars are never as simple as the morons that start them. The end of the conventional war meant the start of the guerilla struggle. Bush told us he was going to rid the world of terrorists but his Iraq initiative has only united, strengthened and emboldened all things al Qaeda. His military action and occupation have failed so spectacularly that even some of Saddam Hussein's worst enemies pine for him as if he were a lost sweetheart from a gentler age.

Nothing highlights Bush's ethical and political depravity more than his ridiculous flight to the aircraft carrier Abraham Lincoln in early May. Puppeteer-in-chief Karl Rove was sure that this multimillion dollar photo-op would provide inordinately valuable propaganda footage for the campaign of '04. It does. We now have explicit video of Bush, a military deserter during Vietnam, in drag as a war hero. Even worse, he stood under a giant banner that announced "MISSION ACCOMPLISHED." Despite this triumphant declaration, American losses have continued unabated and US casualties are now more than double what they were the day Bush became a boat act. Some accomplishment!

Anyone possessed of a modicum of political literacy knows that Iraq had nothing to do with the 9/11 assaults. Nevertheless, Bush will go to New York City for the Republican 2004 Convention and offer the thousands of dead, victimized by his mad dash to violence, as proof of retribution for the carnage at the World Trade Center.
The choice of venues for the R's Convention is as ill-advised as W's foray into Iraq. New Yorkers suffered greatly on and since 9/11. They hold the terrorists accountable for what they did. They hold George Bush accountable for what he didn't do and hasn't done (not to mention might have done). And we all remember that Bush was on a month-long vacation as the final planning for the terrorist assaults took place.

We'd have been in better shape had he simply stayed on vacation. His performance on the fatal day was dismal at best. As the Northeast burned, this would-be cowboy tough guy made like Barney Fife and headed for Nebraska-- via Louisiana. The next day, while thousands lay beneath the rubble, his staff's first order of business was to disseminate a whopper about fictional threats made against Bush. These threats supposedly justified his 9/11 Incredible President Limpett act. That was just the first of hundreds of instances in which the Bush regime has used this great tragedy for venal political gain.

The following year, when W's pre-9/11 negligence was finally receiving some scrutiny, his minions began flashing a multi-colored strobe light of warnings about new terrorist threats. Most of these fictions suggested that New York was again the prime target. Bush's only regret over re-traumatizing millions of New Yorkers came because he forced the city's already overburdened emergency service workers into putting in extra hours before he could find a way to screw them out of overtime pay.

Recently when NYC was plunged into Baghdadian darkness, whispers suggested terrorism was to blame. They were right. It was the economic terrorists of a deregulated energy racket that caused the August blackout. They were terrorists in lockstep with Bush's plan to bleed this nation so dry that it will never again be able to afford the type of social safety net necessary to make sure vibrant cities like New York aren't just good places to live for penthouse dwellers.

And now we learn that Bush even disregarded the ultra-wealthy when his EPA lied to all New Yorkers about the noxious quality of post- 9/11 air.

One year from now the court-appointed prez will be at his Republican Garden party. It will only serve to remind this nation of a day so desperate that most Americans were driven to believe they had no choice but to trust George W. Bush. He has defiled that trust in every conceivable manner.

New Yorkers won't care if Bush shows up to give his acceptance speech at Ground Zero on a hook and ladder, dressed in complete firefighter regalia. They will be out in full force on their streets to let the Republicans know that the city that readily welcomes the tired, the poor, the huddled masses yearning to breathe free and CLEAN air, the city that still puts out the welcome mat for wretched refuse -- draws the line when it comes to inviting riffraff like George W. Bush to town. Mark my words: before next year's Gluttonous Old Party confab ends, New York will make Republicans wish that they had followed Dubyahoo's 9/11 example and headed for Nebraska, even if it meant laying over in Louisiana.

©2003 Barry Crimmins

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?