Saturday, May 12, 2007

Here's some happy for you.....

I want that dress. The hat? Eh, not so much.

Scathing, brutally frank opinion column in the Times of India today.

Indian glee over Bush's discomfiture is misinformed. The Democrats — and indeed the US public — were fervent supporters of the Iraq invasion. They gloried in the shock and awe of the initial military victory.

They have turned against Bush today only because they believe that the US has a right to win wars quickly and without US casualties. They are not pillorying Bush today for faulty policies or quasi-imperialism. They are pillorying him for failed virility.

For as much as the British press picks on Bush and the U.S., this piece is down to the bones harsh. I would argue that there is alot of what they are saying that is correct. Maybe not all, but go take a read.

I hadn't seen this before. Very sad, but critical to see.

Roundup of violence in Iraq
By Hussein Kadhim
McClatchy Newspapers

The daily Iraq violence report is compiled by McClatchy Newspapers in Baghdad from police, military and medical reports. This is not a comprehensive list of all violence in Iraq, much of which goes unreported. All times are Iraq local times.


-Around 8 a.m., a suicide truck (Hino) driver led his car near a petrol station, but police at the neighborhood checkpoint exploded the truck with the suicide driver inside. The driver was killed in the explosion. No other casualties were recorded.

-Around 9 a.m., a roadside bomb exploded in the Amiriya neighborhood, targeting civilians. Among the injured civilians was the son of Iraqi vice president Tariq al-Hashimi...

So it goes, a page and a half of violence.

Just out from the NYT
Religious Groups Granted Millions for Pet Projects


A New York Times analysis shows that the number of earmarks for religious organizations, while small compared with the overall number, have increased sharply in recent years. From 1989 to January 2007, Congress approved almost 900 earmarks for religious groups, totaling more than $318 million, with more than half of them granted in the Congressional session that included the 2004 presidential election. By contrast, the same analysis showed fewer than 60 earmarks for faith-based groups in the Congressional session that covered 1997 and 1998.

First, let me say that in the earlier paragraph, Jack Murtha was called out as to inserting earmarks for St Vincents College. I don't know if what he did was wrong, but I don't want to act like I'm ignoring it. That wasn't the thrust of the article to me.

The main point to me was that the FREAKIN' New York Times was JUST discovering this? I can't even tell you the times I've read about all the slush money being diverted to "Faith Based Initiatives" that were murky, let alone earmarks of this type.

At least, maybe now, something will get done about it. Maybe.

Unfortunately Redundant Headlines

Three US firms recall beef

Giuliani tries to clarify abortion stance

General Says National Guard Is Weakened by Deployments in Iraq

Five US soldiers killed in Iraq

Bush is an Idiot

There I was, minding my own business, forcing coffeeee ( to quote Paddy) down my throat, when what comes up on MSNBC? This:

A Pasadena website is outsourcing local news to reporters based in India due to lower labor costs. Yes, it's cheaper and easier to report on Pasadena's city council meetings from 9,000 miles away. The publisher, James McPherson, said it improves reporting and it's just like "an individual working at a desk around the corner."

Maybe we can outsource our ethics to India, too, since our stellar government has botched that pretty well.

Oh oh.

Squirrel Attack in School Classroom --
No Terror Links Yet Found

The above almost reads like an Onion headline. Almost. During this past Wednesday morning, a squirrel ran inside a San Jose elementary school and, according to the San Francisco Chronicle, "went on the attack, bloodying an 11-year-old girl and a parent in a slashing, biting assault and injuring a second grown-up before making its escape."

May I refer you to this?

'Black Death' found in Denver squirrels

So far, 13 squirrels have been found dead in or near Denver's City Park but officials say transfer of the bubonic plague to humans is not likely.
By Patrick O'Driscoll, USA TODAY

DENVER — A rash of squirrel deaths from plague in the middle of Colorado's largest city has heightened surveillance for the deadly but curable disease.
No humans here have been infected with plague, the "Black Death" disease that killed millions in 14th-century Europe. A state hotline gets 50-75 calls daily about dead rodents. Chris Urbina, Denver's health director, says the risk of catching it "is extremely low."


"We're In A War.....
We All Need To Lighten Up A Little!!"

You Down With ODP?

This evening should be fun. I am headed to the big Ohio Democratic Party dinner, also known in these parts as the ODP. Lots of media should be present. Sen. Sherrod Brown and Gov. Ted Strickland are speaking and many a congressional aspirant will be there.

I am sure the enthusiasm will be palpable. This had been GOP country since the early 1990s, and last year not only did the Dems take the governor's mansion and knock off Sen. Mike Dewine, but also took a number of other statewide positions (attorney general, secretary of state, etc.) and came within a whisker of taking back the state house and knocking off Reps. Mean Jean Schmidt and Deborah Pryce. Of course they also took the House seat of a certain jailbird named Bob Ney.

Oh and a certain Mrs. Clinton will be the keynoter, any questions you guys want me to ask?

Montreal fined $20Gs for bar mitzvah 'from hell'

How do you mow your lawn?

Mary Cheney's book sells for $.07

NY consul employee moonlighted in X-rated films

Teen becomes Indiana's youngest coroner

Workers rescued from giant vat of fish feces

Fewer Babies Named "Katrina" After Storm

Wis. farmer finds new calf has two noses

Jealous osprey makes up with mate

And finally, my fav of the week.....

Panty-clad man tries robbery with lighter

Iraq said to be missing up to 15 million dollars of oil daily
Sat May 12, 2:37 AM ET

WASHINGTON (AFP) - Between five million and 15 million dollars worth of oil a day is accounted for in Iraq and could have been siphoned off through corruption or smuggling, The New York Times reported Saturday.

Citing a draft US government report it gained access to, the newspaper said the amounts relate to between 100,000 and 300,000 barrels a day of Iraq’s declared oil production over the past four years.

The report does not give a final conclusion on what happened to the missing fraction of the roughly two million barrels pumped by Iraq each day, the paper said.

See, Iran doesn't need to be funding the insurgents or al Qaeda!!!

They have an independent source of income thanks to our poor planning and inability to secure the country!!

Yeah Team!!

***for something really disturbing, go to this government page set up circa 2004 titled Iraq: One Year After The Beginning of The War A special Presentation that I found by accident.

Friday, May 11, 2007

pic "borrowed" from C&L

Looks like it's a really good thing that Regent University's' Favorite Alum got her immunity.

A federal judge approved an immunity deal for her Friday, allowing her to testify without fear of prosecution.

Why you ask?

Colleagues Cite Partisan Focus by Justice Official

Published: May 12, 2007
WASHINGTON, May 11 — Two years ago, Robin C. Ashton, a seasoned criminal prosecutor at the Department of Justice, learned from her boss that a promised promotion was no longer hers.

“You have a Monica problem,” Ms. Ashton was told, according to several Justice Department officials. Referring to Monica M. Goodling, a 31-year-old, relatively inexperienced lawyer who had only recently arrived in the office, the boss added, “She believes you’re a Democrat and doesn’t feel you can be trusted.”


Ms. Goodling would soon be quizzing applicants for civil service jobs at Justice Department headquarters with questions that several United States attorneys said were inappropriate, like who was their favorite president and Supreme Court justice. One department official said an applicant was even asked, “Have you ever cheated on your wife?”

Ms. Goodling also moved to block the hiring of prosecutors with résumés that suggested they might be Democrats, even though they were seeking posts that were supposed to be nonpartisan, two department officials said.

And she helped maintain lists of all the United States attorneys that graded their loyalty to the Bush administration, including work on past political campaigns, and noted if they were members of the Federalist Society, a conservative legal group.

This is ONLY going to get better.

We need some of Henry Waxman's "Charts" to map it all out for's complicated but I'm sure it will be worth the wait.

Landmines in the Intertubes.

Google may use games to analyse net users

· Players' behaviour could be used by advertisers
· Tracking idea disturbs privacy campaigners

David Adam and Bobbie Johnson
Saturday May 12, 2007
The Guardian

Internet giant Google has drawn up plans to compile psychological profiles of millions of web users by covertly monitoring the way they play online games.


Google searches web's dark side

Malicious programs are installed by visits to a booby-trapped site
One in 10 web pages scrutinised by search giant Google contained malicious code that could infect a user's PC.

And here I thought I was safe in front of my computer 16 hours a day!!!

My Pal Robert

I don't think I could find enough superlatives to tell you how fantastic a guy Robert Greenwald is, so I won't even try. But add Congressman-slayer to the list. Robert went to testify before Congress on war-profiteering this week.

Rep. Jack Kingston, who may have played the guy in Deliverance who told Ned Beatty to "squeal like a pig" (I don't have confirmation on this yet--will let you know), tried to attack Robert. What a pathetic corporate whore. Robert took him apart.

Read his account and watch for yourself here.

This is just hysterical.

There is no way he was expecting that. Good for Jane!

NASA: Eastern U.S. summers to get 10 degrees hotter

WASHINGTON (AP) — Future eastern USA summers look much hotter than originally predicted with daily highs about 10 degrees warmer than in recent years by the mid-2080s, a new NASA study says.

Previous and widely used global warming computer estimates predict too many rainy days, the study says. Because drier weather is hotter, they underestimate how warm it will be east of the Mississippi River, said atmospheric scientists Barry Lynn and Leonard Druyan of Columbia University and NASA's Goddard Institute for Space Studies.

"Unless we take some strong action to curtail carbon dioxide emissions, it's going to get a lot hotter," said Lynn, now a scientist at Hebrew University of Jerusalem. "It's going to be a lot more dangerous for people who are not in the best of health."

Hmm, "people who are not in the best of health.".
Sounds like the elderly and poor.

NOW we know why the Republicans don't believe in climate change.

Media Bistro

CNN International Chyron: "Bush Resigns"
Following up on this post, it did happen. Here's a screen grab from CNN International around midnight ET:

This appeared on screen for 12 seconds. (Two seconds before, President Bush had appeared on screen, but the chyron accurately said "Pressure over Iraq.")

Bloody CNN Int'l Teases.

Nice Try, Byron

Over at the National Review, Byron York is trying to undercut John Edwards' credentials as a populist. York hints that if Edwards made big money at the hedge fund he worked for, he could not be an anti-poverty crusader.

"How much Edwards made from his work with Fortress will be critical to his carefully-cultivated image as an anti-poverty crusader. That image has already been damaged somewhat by personal extravagances like a new 28,000 square-foot mansion and a $400 haircut. If he took home hedge-fund-sized money from Fortress, rival Democratic candidates, not to mention Republicans, will likely have a field day."

This attack is both illogical and (say it with me) intellectually dishonest.

First, let's take the illogical. One of the foremost anti-poverty crusaders in this world is Bono, of U2 fame. My guess is Bono doesn't live in an adobe hut. I also guess he does not fly coach during his travels. And I imagine he makes a decent living in the record business, what with ticket sales and tour promotions and commercials et. al. Does that mean he's not a true anti-poverty crusader? Of course not. Bono's income has nothing to do with his intent, and the same goes for Bill Gates, Ted Turner, etc. etc. York must know this, but obviously, he doesn't care. Oh, by the way, in the last 100 years or so, no President did more for the downtrodden in this country than FDR. He wasn't poor, now was he Byron?

As for the intellectually dishonest part, well, let's get to the GOP's man, George W. Bush. He has a carefully-cultivated image as a man of the people, right? Just your average blue collar Joe, the kind of guy we'd like to drink a beer with at the bar. Well, George Bush went to the most elite schools in the country, grew up with wealth, power and influence, and the only blue collar he ever had was the one on his navy blazer he had to wear for the Skull and Crossbones Society functions. So Byron, were you all lying about George Bush being an average guy or does personality and intent matter than the trappings of wealth?

A swath of diversity and opinion this big.....


David Gregory: The Next Don Imus?

"NBC and CBS' WFAN radio are looking at NBC News White House correspondent David Gregory as their next Don Imus," Variety reports. "Sources said NBC is considering Gregory as a permanent replacement for Imus on MSNBC and that the network is in talks with WFAN on a deal to simulcast the show."

Way to take a stand for variety there MSNBC.

Via Media Matters

Time to write the letters......

One MSNBC Plaza
Secaucus, N.J. 07094

Individual emails are like this..

Oh, and he loves him some bloggers.... not.


It took CBS 2 weeks to fire Don Imus for calling members of Rutgers women's basketball team "nappy-headed hos."

It took CBS 2 days to fire General John Batiste (Ret.) for being a Patriot.

Headline quickies:

Michael Moore Faces U.S. Treasury Probe

Gee, that won't increase interest in his new movie, will it? Moore should send out thank you cards for this.

Bush's Meet-and-Potatoes Dinner

Get ready, Goodrich. Brace yourself, Bristol-Myers Squibb. If you haven't received the call already, a Republican member of the House of Representatives is probably about to try to shake you down for big money.


GOP advises members how to approach companies for maximum donations at president's fundraiser.


"When a member of Congress calls, particularly a senior member of Congress, we give that great weight," said Jeffrey H. Smith, head of lobbying at the law firm Arnold & Porter. "I don't think it's heavy-handed. It's the nature of politics these days." He added, "My impression is that many members are not a good deal more comfortable with it that we are."

Others are not so sympathetic. "Some people do find it very heavy-handed," said a lobbyist for a major local company who spoke on the condition of anonymity for fear of angering members of Congress. "It's certainly a lighter touch to hear from a staffer."

The GOP needs money. They know they're not doing well, and they're putting the pressure on.

Geiger And Digby

Easily two of the most articulate and interesting bloggers out there.

Bob has a weekly Osama clock, which reminds us how long it has been since the attacks and we captured him dead or alive. Oops, I mean never found him because our president is a moron. Worth checking out.

Digby makes the intersting point that Rudy may just be the sleaziest candidate since Tricky Dick (IMO, Rudy's got him beat by a mile), and goes into the next scandal, which is just how Rudy got his hands on World Series rings from my beloved New York Yankees (hint: The owner is a Republican jackass).

These rings are worth $200K each, and of course this had nothing to do with Rudy's pushing for a new stadium to be built in Manhattan, where said owner Mr. George Steinbrenner could clean up on sky boxes (Mike Bloomberg came into office and promptly rejected the plan).

GOP fundraising gala sees drop in proceeds
President helps raise $10.5 million, down from last year's $17 million

WASHINGTON — President Bush helped raise $10.5 million for the national Republican Party at its annual gala on Thursday night, the smallest take in years for the event that came only months after the GOP lost control of both houses of Congress.

The Republican National Committee's spring fundraising gala hosted by the president raised $17 million last year, $15 million in 2005 and $14 million in 2003. When Bush was seeking re-election to the White House in 2004, the dinner brought in a record $38.5 million.


The latest fundraising filings showed that national Democrats have nearly eliminated Republicans' advantage.

They keep on kicking the elephant, but it's in a coma.

Euthanasia anyone?

Shrinking Credibility

One of the most amazing things about this Administration is their ability to cling to talking points in the face of overwhelming reality. Tony Snow provides the most recent example. Despite John Boehner suggesting a September deadline for the success of the surge, open discussion of benchmarks and the recent meeting where Republican moderates lashed out at Bush on the war, Snow said this...

"There is unity in the Republican Party about what's going on, on Capitol Hill right now," said White House Press Secretary Tony Snow. "If you want disunity, take a look at what's going on with Democrats, where they cannot agree upon a resolution."

Now, if Snow meant that Republicans are unified in their fear that George Bush is going to sink their entire party, I would agree. But no, he was still pretending that all the Republicans support the President on Iraq. That's right folks, nothing to see here. All is well with the Republicans.

CBS Fires General John Batiste (Ret.) After He Blasts Bush Over the War

General John Batiste was asked to leave his position as a consultant to CBS News after appearing in a VoteVets advertisement where he said that George W. Bush refused to listen to the Generals on the ground in Iraq.

Well, we already have Medieval religions running our country, what's a little "Black Death" among friends?

'Black Death' found in Denver squirrels

So far, 13 squirrels have been found dead in or near Denver's City Park but officials say transfer of the bubonic plague to humans is not likely.
By Patrick O'Driscoll, USA TODAY

DENVER — A rash of squirrel deaths from plague in the middle of Colorado's largest city has heightened surveillance for the deadly but curable disease.
No humans here have been infected with plague, the "Black Death" disease that killed millions in 14th-century Europe. A state hotline gets 50-75 calls daily about dead rodents. Chris Urbina, Denver's health director, says the risk of catching it "is extremely low."

One human case has been reported in the USA this year, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. A 49-year-old man in San Juan County, N.M., was hospitalized last week and is recovering. A flu-like illness that occurs most often in lymph nodes or the blood, plague is treatable with antibiotics.

Gosh we're lucky that FEMA and the CDC are all well funded and professionally staffed.


White House sought investigations of voter fraud allegations before elections

By Margaret Talev and Marisa Taylor
McClatchy Newspapers

WASHINGTON - Only weeks before last year's pivotal midterm elections, the White House urged the Justice Department to pursue voter-fraud allegations against Democrats in three battleground states, a high-ranking Justice official has told congressional investigators.

In two instances in October 2006, President Bush's political adviser, Karl Rove, or his deputies passed the allegations on to Attorney General Alberto Gonzales' then-chief of staff, Kyle Sampson.


But Friedrich declined to pursue a related matter from Wisconsin, he told congressional investigators, because an inquiry so close to an election could inappropriately sway voting results. Friedrich decided not to pass the matter on to the criminal division for investigation, even though Sampson gave him a 30-page report prepared by Republican activists that made claims of voting fraud.

It's happening behind closed doors, but it's happening.

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Now, I don't approve of prostitution or anything, but BOY I feel sorry for this guy.

Police nab wheelchair man on motorway brothel trip
Spanish police pulled over a man in a electric wheelchair who was riding along on a motorway after he got lost while looking for a brothel.

The 42-year-old man, who is tetraplegic, used his chin and mouth to drive the specially-designed wheelchair which keeps him in a stretched position, regional newspaper El Ideal Callego reported.

Couldn't they just have given him directions?

Republicans Say The Darndest Things

Obviously, every time a national Republican says something ridiculous, bigoted or downright idiotic we all hear about it. But what's even more scary, is what they can get away with saying locally with almost nobody challenging them.

Case in point, from our friend OhDave, a local radio motor mouth in the Cincinnati market, named Mike McConnell (I have quickly come to the conclusion that anyone with the name McConnell must be an idiot). Enjoy his pearls of wisdom:

If you're firm believer that we're causing the globe to get warmer I'm just curious do you believe that when we launch rockets we knock the earth out of orbit? Because that's how much impact man actually has on the planet. Launching rockets doesn't affect the orbit; driving your car doesn't make it warmer. I know a lot of scientists say I'm wrong on this but I'm sticking to my guns because I'm pigheaded...
It goes on like this.

In a sane media environment not only would this guy not be allowed on the radio, but he wouldnt' be allowed to breed and would be put to good use as a crash-test dummy. But this is what we've got out there. So watch your kids. The heck with Janet Jackson's nipple, they could be listening to this moron.

Rudy! Snubs Poor Farmers
Only Millionaires For Rally Hosts.

This needs to get out far and yon into the blogosphere kids.

I'm with Greg Sargent, if this was a Democrat, it would be at the top of Drudge with a flashing siren.

OLIN–Last weekend Deb and Jerry VonSprecken of Olin received a call from former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani’s campaign office asking them if they would be interested in holding a campaign rally on May 4, after she had donated to his campaign.
“We thought it would be an honor and agreed,” said Jerry.

After agreeing to host Rudy's rally, Deb and Jerry Von Sprecken then set about doing a bunch of work to organize the event. They underwent a security check and called a bunch of local friends and acquaintances -- and even the local sheriff and fire department -- and proudly put the pieces in place for their rally.

All good and fine until.....

On Tuesday Deb received a call from Giuliani’s Des Moines office and was asked to call New York.
“They wanted to know our assets,” she revealed, and added that she and Jerry have a modest 80 acre farm and raise cattle.

Later she received a call from Tony Delgado at the Des Monies location.

“Tony said, ‘I’m sorry, you aren’t worth a million dollars and he is campaigning on the Death Tax right now.’ then he said they weren’t going to be able to come,” Deb continued.

Long story short, Deb is disabled, they aren't rich, they went to tons of trouble to organize this and the Rudy! campaign just blew them off....
oh, but they did offer a chance at a photo-op.

Finally, Greg called Deb to confirm all the information. This is what she said.

"I told [Rudy's aide] from day one that we were poor folks, just trying to scrape by...When they [asked us to host the event], I was just ecstatic. We were honored. It was an honor and a privilege. We worked so hard...

Why would Rudy Giuliani not come speak to the average Americans that live in eastern Iowa, instead of qualifying you as a millionaire before he will show up to your place?"

Good question Deb.

Popcorn Alert!!!

Giuliani plans to outline views on abortion rights

WASHINGTON (CNN) -- Republican presidential hopeful Rudy Giuliani will fully outline his position on abortion rights before next week's GOP debate in South Carolina, Giuliani advisers told CNN on Thursday.

The former New York City mayor's remarks will reassert his personal opposition to abortion, but also emphasize his support for a woman's right to choose whether or not to terminate a pregnancy, the advisers said.

Rudy! Hates Abortion, But It's Okay.
They Could Outlaw It, But Maybe Not.

He's always been very sympathetic to women's rights.....


Man, I want 435 Maxine Waters in Congress!!!

Anyone else guffaw over the double entendre, "CRS"? heh.

*courtesy TPMtv & C&L

Working Families For Kentucky Release Ad On Bruce Lunsford

Bruce Lunsford supported George W. Bush. Bruce Lunsford supported Mitch McConnell. Bruce Lunsford supported Ernie Fletcher. How can anyone trust him now?

Limited Live Blogging of Gonzo Hearings Before I Go to My Day Job

Watching CSPAN3 right now:

Gonzo: "Mr. Chairman, you have more breadcrumbs than I do."

Conyers: "You are the one who talked to Karl Rove... That's a pretty big breadcrumb."

Now they're going back to how many employees are under Gonzo's watch. He just can't handle 100,000 of them and still keep track of minor issues like firing U.S. Attorneys for political reasons. It's hard work.

Update: Mike Pence** is grateful that the 6 paintballers were caught. We need to protect our kids, and Gonzo's obviously the one to do it. I take everything I've been thinking back now. I should have realized how much safer we are as a nation under Gonzo's watch. Please forgive my previous negativity and/or skepticism.

**Man of bravery, man of no fear of open air markets in Indiana.

***adedenudm Note from Paddy*****
Just now Murray Waas reporting

Administration Withheld E-Mails About Rove
By Murray Waas, National Journal
© National Journal Group Inc.
Thursday, May 10, 2007

The Bush administration has withheld a series of e-mails from Congress showing that senior White House and Justice Department officials worked together to conceal the role of Karl Rove in installing Timothy Griffin, a protégé of Rove's, as U.S. attorney for the Eastern District of Arkansas.

The withheld records show that D. Kyle Sampson, who was then-chief of staff to Attorney General Alberto Gonzales, consulted with White House officials in drafting two letters to Congress that appear to have misrepresented the circumstances of Griffin's appointment as U.S. attorney and of Rove's role in supporting Griffin.

Iraqi bill demands U.S. Troops Withdraw

Yesterday we blogged that the MSM should start mentioning that a majority of Iraqi lawmakers now oppose U.S. occupation.

Well, the AP is now up with a story:
A majority of Iraqi lawmakers endorsed a draft bill calling for a timetable for the withdrawal of foreign troops and demanding a freeze on the number already in the country, lawmakers said Thursday.

The legislation was being discussed even as U.S. lawmakers were locked in a dispute with the White House over their call to start reducing the size of the U.S. force in the coming months.

Randy Kuhl

He took up arms himself when he pulled a shotgun on his wife. Now Rep. Randy Kuhl refuses to listen to the Generals who served on the ground in Iraq and wants to send more troops into battle without the supplies and training they need:
Three retired generals, one who lives in Monroe County, are firing attacks at members of Congress in new national television ads over their position on the Iraq war, including ones targeted at local Reps. Randy Kuhl and James Walsh.

The first ad released Wednesday by features retired Army Maj. Gen. John Batiste of Brighton, who has been railing against the war since he retired from the military in 2005.

In the ad, Batiste, who led the Army’s 1st Infantry Division in Iraq for 2½ years, encourages Congress to change course and says Bush has pursued “a failed policy that is breaking our great Army and Marine Corps.”...

Kuhl, however, voted for the troop buildup in Iraq and said recently that “I’m not about to send up the white flag and surrender at this point.”

4 in 10 Support Impeachment

I'll offer this with little comment, because frankly, not much is necessary. Except that President Clinton had a 60% approval rating when they were trying to impeach him.

Meanwhile 39% of Americans think this is a fate befitting our current commander-in-chief. It's amazing how pathetic this guy is, but you wouldn't know it to read the Beltway Media Masters of the Universe, for whom he is still on the comeback trail (ahh, Broder)because he didn't "trash the place," or more specifically Broder's Kingdom. That renders this poll useless, as it only represents the people of the country.

Billy Boy Gets All Frothy With Wes Clark, Clark Shuts Him Out.

See if you catch something that was mentioned to me yesterday.

An undercurrent of "something" re: George Soros.

-love the way Billy talks to Wes about "supporting the troops". heh.

Israel Donates $5 Million To Help Victims In Darfur

What other countries will follow?

The Foreign Ministry will donate NIS 20 million ($5 million) to victims of genocide in Darfur, Sudan, following a recommendation presented by Daniel Miron, head of the Ministry’s Human Rights Division.

“Israel cannot stand by while such a severe humanitarian crisis is taking place - the most severe in the world today - without trying to reach out and help,” he said.

Almost forgot!!!

House Hearing with Atty. Gen. Gonzales on Justice Dept. Oversight (9:30am EST) - LIVE today on CSpan 3. The committee has been very busy having non-public meetings since the last time we watched Gonzo sweat, so today will be very interesting!!

*****************Update 1013a EST*****

Whooooo wheeee.... Gonzo is all over the place. I don't want to be mean or anything, but he sounds just like a certain cartoon character that stutters alot. Yipes.
Ha!!! Sensenbrenner getting all up in Gonzo re Jefferson & his "freezer money".

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Don't Mess With Howie

There is a reason we named our award for ass-kicking pundit performances here at after Howie Klein. I won't go into all the reasons why Howie is frankly one of my favorite people I have come across during my time in the burgeoning "progressive movement" (somewhere on O'Reilly's flow chart between Soros and your local Falafel King). That would take me all day.

Howie, as you may know, has helped raise lots of money for progressive candidates, and he doesn't much like being lied to by people who say they are for equal rights so he'll help raise them money, and then vote against hate crimes bills (and also refuse to talk to him when he calls to inquire about it).

That would be you Rep. Chris Carney.

Want another example? This was an email he recently sent to me and a few others (I got his permission to publish), about a column Jonah "nepotism is my middle name, baby" Goldberg wrote with the usual trite attacks on netroots folk on the left:

People in Washington read Jonah Goldberg? Why? You guys back there don't get Limbaugh or Hannity so you have to read the Rove stuff from a shill who scribbles it out for an L.A. audience that completely ignores him? Is this the same Goldberg whose mother was a prostitute and claimed she... well... did... stuff with Lyndon Johnson and Hubert Humphrey and who was paid to impersonate a journalist by the Nixon campaign? If Jonah is the same one I'm thinking of, that mom also was the one who somehow got that crazy Linda Tripp woman to help set up Clinton in the Lewinsky affair. I thought Jonah just writes columns about how liberals are immoral and that he was a kind of a sissified version of Ann Coulter. Who reads him??? (Did he ever pay up after he lost his bet to Juan Cole that Iraqis would thank Bush for liberating their country?)
Don't make Howie angry. You wouldn't like him when he's angry.

Because I care

Jiggle your eyes to boost memory

Excess green tea may damage liver

Chinese 'e-cigarette' helps people stub out the habit

Nutrition labels not accurate, researcher says

FDA OKs Drug Patch to Treat Parkinson's

Hepatitis C may boost risk for non-Hodgkin's lymphoma

Study: Conceiving in Summer Lowers Baby's Future Test Scores

Study: Outdoor smoke gets in your lungs

And finally, from the Department of Never Letting Your Guard Down....

Warning issued over flaming toilets in Japan

Housecleaning notes.

The "Fox in the Henhouse" ad to the right is very deserving of a moment of your time. Bush nominated Michael Baroody to head the Consumer Product Safety Commission after he spent 13 years working for the bad guys on the other side of the game. Go sign the petition.

Please click on all our advertisers (so they will continue to advertise) and if you are thinking of buying something from Amazon, clicking on one of our links to go through benefits us.

Also, each of the books that we have linked to Amazon through are hand picked by The Cliffster himself.

That means GREAT reading!!


Random thought- I'm going to have sooo much fun at Yearly Kos in August!!!

Mostly because Cliff has no idea what I look like, so I'm gonna stalk him and make faces behind his back til he figures it out.

Way to make him paranoid, eh?

Humour is good.

From the files labeled, "DAMN, why didn't I think of this?"

Vienna City Hall Starts Sex Hotline to Fund Library

VIENNA, Austria — This isn't the typical whispering you might expect to hear at a library. Vienna's City Hall has launched a "sex hotline" to raise money for the capital's main public library, officials said Tuesday.

It's unusual, but it's not particularly raunchy: Callers pay 53 cents a minute to listen to an actress read breathless passages from erotica dating to the Victorian era.

City Hall set up the hotline earlier this month to help the library raise cash for planned remodeling and expansion, Austrian media reported.

Anne Bennent, a famous Austrian stage and film star, reads passages from the Vienna library's collection of 1,200 works of erotic fiction from the 18th, 19th and 20th centuries, the library said.

Heck, I got a copy of "The Romance Of Lust" by Anonymous around here someplace......

Cheney, in Iraq, Concedes Problems

Aides said the vice president wanted to emphasize that ending the conflict in Iraq cannot done by military means alone and that his mission was to get a sense of the situation on the ground in Iraq and to deliver a message that more work is needed on the political front to overcome divisions and delays.

Reality. What a concept.

BAGHDAD – A thunderous explosion struck Baghdad on Wednesday, coinciding with a visit by Vice President Dick Cheney to discuss efforts to reduce the violence in Iraq.

Republicans On The Couch

Over at the National Review, David Frum takes a look at the weakness in the GOP field. I think his analysis is spot on. It's good enough that I hope no one in the GOP reads it. Some key quotes

Given that amazing roster — why does this campaign feel so feckless and lackluster?

Rudy Giuliani — a leader once legendary for his intensity, focus, and mastery of detail — has been running an improvised, unbriefed, unprepared campaign.

Mitt Romney has ignored and denigrated his two greatest political achievements — his health-care success and his trans-party victory in Massachusetts — in order utterly implausibly to position himself as a social-issues crusader.

John McCain, Mr. Bipartisan, now presents himself as a red-meat conservative.

Shall I go on?

But as much as I blame the candidates, I have to blame the party too. Have Republicans absorbed how much trouble their party is in? To the (limited) extent that we do, we tend to to attribute everything to Iraq — as if Katrina, the Schiavo affair, corruption in Congress, and the intensifying irrelevance of our domestic-policy agenda did not exist. And so we demand from our candidates ever more fervent declarations of fealty to an ideology that interests an ever dwindling proportion of the public.

Two very troubling articles from the Times of India

Terrorists trying to enter India through sea route: Govt
9 May, 2007 l 1340 hrs

NEW DELHI: Pakistan-based terrorist groups, particularly Lashker-e-Toiba, were exploring possibilities of infiltrating their agents, arms and ammunitions into India through sea route, the government said on Wednesday.

"Pak-based terrorist groups, particularly LeT, have been exploring possibilities of induction of manpower and terrorist hardware through sea route," he said.

Then add in this one

Mad rush of fraud visa applicants worries US
9 May, 2007 l 1351 hrs ISTlPTI

NEW DELHI: Indians aspiring to migrate to the US using "fraudulent" travel documents would be in trouble as the American Embassy here has intensified efforts to curb visa fraud in view of an "alarming" rise in the number of such applicants.

Let's hope there is still some competence left in this administration. Some. is today launching a three-ad series featuring three retired generals, two of whom were George Bush's commanders on the ground.

In the first ad, retired Major General John Batiste takes the President on, directly, when he says that he's just 'listening to commanders on the ground' in Iraq.

Batiste should know if the President is listening or not, since he was one of those commanders! are airing in states and districts of those Members of Congress who are very close to breaking with the President on Iraq, and joining the troops and American people.

They are: Senators Susan Collins, John Sununu, John Warner, and Norm Coleman, and Representatives Mary Bono, Phil English, Randy Kuhl, Jim Walsh, Heather Wilson, Jo Ann Emerson, Tim Johnson, Mike Rogers, Fred Upton, and Mike Castle. Mentioning them by name at the end, the local spots will call on them to "Protect America, Not George Bush."

Next week, we’ll launch another ad with retired Major General Paul Eaton. And, after that, the campaign will wrap up with a powerful ad from former NATO Allied Supreme Commander, General Wesley Clark.

Good stuff. Smack 'em upside the head with the truth.

Maybe This Is Why

the Republican Party struggles with Latinos. Wonder what Mel Martinez, head of the RNC, thinks about this.

Utah County Republicans ended their convention on Saturday by debating Satan's influence on illegal immigrants.

The group was unable to take official action because not enough members stuck around long enough to vote, despite the pleadings of party officials. The convention was held at Canyon View Junior High School.

Don Larsen, chairman of legislative District 65 for the Utah County Republican Party, had submitted a resolution warning that Satan's minions want to eliminate national borders and do away with sovereignty.

In a speech at the convention, Larsen told those gathered that illegal immigrants "hate American people" and "are determined to destroy this country, and there is
nothing they won't do."

Illegal aliens are in control of the media, and working in tandem with Democrats, are trying to "destroy Christian America" and replace it with "a godless new world order -- and that is not extremism, that is fact," Larsen said.

At the end of his speech, Larsen began to cry, saying illegal immigrants were trying to bring about the destruction of the U.S. "by self invasion."

Republican officials then allowed speakers to defend and refute the resolution. One speaker, who was identified as "Joe," said illegal immigrants were Marxist and under the influence of the devil. Another, who declined to give her name to the Daily Herald, said illegal immigrants should not be allowed because "they are not going to become Republicans and stop flying the flag upside down. ... If they want to be Americans, they should learn to speak English and fly their flag like we do."

(HT: Daily Dish)

Behind the Headlines...

Bush Would Veto New House War Funding Bill Inner thoughts of Baby Bush: "Waaaah! NO! They won't get their way! I'm the boss of them!!!" ::stomps foot:: "NONONO!!!" ::throws himself on floor, fists and feet flailing:: "MY WAY! Congwess is MEAN! And BAD! They hate our troops! Waaaah!! I wanna do the war MY way, MY WAY!! Lotsa guns and stuff! Go boom! Let 'em die! I'M THE COMMANDER GUY! Mommy? Daddy? Grampa Dickie? Make 'em stop! What does 28% mean? How many more minutes 'til 2009? Are we there yet? Are we, are we? I need to tinkle! Mommmmmyyyyyy!"

Cheney Makes Unannounced Visit to Iraq Inner thoughts of Shotgun Darth: "I better keep this under wraps. The way they feel about me back home is bad enough, but here, I'm a sitting duck. Gotta sneak in. Shhhh. Where's my body armor? HEY! I said, 'Where's my ****ing BODY ARMOR?!!' Step on it!! I gotta show how ****ing swimmingly things are going here!"

A New Pitchman and a New Pitch NRCC Chief Tom Cole has a plan to help the GOP win back the majority in the House in 2008. ... The good news, Cole says, is that things can't get much worse. (Okay, I can't top that. That's his quote. I just italicized it.)


I apologize for the last minute notice. But if you'r in DC, get on over to the World Bank:

WHEN: 1 pm, Wednesday, May 9
WHERE: park-type area across street from World Bank headquarters, 1818 H St NW, Washington DC
WHAT: emergency protest to tell World Bank to fire Paul Wolfowitz
WHO: you, your friends, your colleagues; some members--and signatures from 50,000 people worldwide

San Fran Chronicle Piece

Sorry boys and girls, a bit of self-promotion. I guess it is my site after all (even though I'm easily the dumbest person who writes for it), so what the hell.

I just published an op-ed in the San Francisco Chronicle on what McCain has done wrong so far and what he failed to accomplish in the debate last week.

Read it, if so are so inclined.

Majority of Iraqi Lawmakers Now Oppose American Occupation

This is something the MSM should definitely be picking up on. With a majority of Iraqi lawmakers now opposing American presence in Iraq, it appears the only Iraqis on the nightly talk shows calling for us to stay are those hand-picked by Cheney:
On Tuesday, without note in the U.S. media, more than half of the members of Iraq's parliament rejected the continuing occupation of their country. 144 lawmakers signed onto a legislative petition calling on the United States to set a timetable for withdrawal...

Reached by phone in Baghdad on Tuesday, Al-Rubaie said that he would present the petition, which is nonbinding, to the speaker of the Iraqi parliament and demand that a binding measure be put to a vote. Under Iraqi law, the speaker must present a resolution that's called for by a majority of lawmakers, but there are significant loopholes and what will happen next is unclear.

Ugh, nothing like waking up to Christopher Hitchens mumbling on the teevee.

Scarborough Hosting Mornings For MSNBC
Joe Scarborough is hosting MSNBC's morning show Wednesday through Friday this week.

"Morning Joe" will air from 6 to 9am -- and he's still hosting Scarborough Country live at 9pm.

The preliminary lineup of confirmed guests includes Joe Biden, Tom Brokaw, Laurie David, Kinky Friedman, Peter Gammons, Christopher Hitchens, Joe Klein, Mitt Romney, Tim Russert, and George Stephanopoulos.

David Gregory hosts next week...

Like there aren't enough white guys on MSNBC already.

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

Emails I like

Often, I use this section to put up silly or ridiculous emails I receive, usually Internet scams or 2 for 1 Girls Gone Wild offers that I could accept, if I wanted my wife to beat me senseless.

But this one is serious. I am very very very happy to have received this email today:

Dear Friends,

Today, I filed the necessary paperwork to become a candidate for the U.S. Senate. At the end of May, I will travel around the state to talk with the people of Maine about the kind of campaign that we will build together. In the meantime, please visit my new campaign website at While you're there, please take a moment to watch the video to hear more about the campaign and how you can get involved.

I hope you will have the chance to watch the video and visit the rest of my new website. With your time, your contributions, and your support, we can turn Maine and America in a new direction, toward a more responsible, fairer, prosperous future for all.


Tom Allen
I met Rep. Tom Allen when I was working for another fantastic person, Chellie Pingree, who was running for the Senate the last time around (and is now running for Allen's vacated seat--I have a longer more detailed post coming on the myriad reasons you should support Chellie). But back to Rep. Allen.

He is brilliant, honest and is one of the most down-to-earth people I have met in this crazy business. I was on a first name basis with him quickly, and he remembered my name after meeting me once, maybe twice. Go to his site. Give him money. You won't regret it.

Allen, unlike faux-moderate, liar Susan Collins, voted against the War in Iraq. Bush, McCain and Lieberman all support Collins, so believe what you will about her anti-Iraq War talk. She "introduced" John Ashcroft when he was nominated for Attorney General, campaigned for Rick Santorum last year and has voted for every reactionary judge President Bush has offered up. So believe her at your own peril, that she is pro-choice, for civil rights and environmental rights, when judges she supported turn us back to the Stone Age on these and other issues. Oh, and she lied about only running for two terms.

The choice could not be more clear. An honest progressive or a lying faux-moderate, Bush-lover. May Maine make the right decision, for the good of us all.

McCain Leading in Iowa, New Hampshire and South Carolina

It's become popular to dismiss McCain because he has fallen behind Giuliani in national polls. But, at the risk of sounding like a broken record on this, McCain has the Bush Team that did him in in South Carolina in 2000 on his payroll (and I have done the research for my book, these guys are nasty and they are connected).

McCain knows if he wins the primaries and caucuses, those national polls will change quickly. Progressives dismiss his chances at their own peril, as this man is still leading this thing based on the aformentioned polls, and is still the most likely of the current crop of contenders to get the nomination.

A Gingrich or Thompson entry may scramble things, or maybe the GOP will figure out a way to run Reagan's corpse, which they all secretly wish they could do anyhow.

In any case, McCain will still need to find a way to win back Independents and moderates to put the nail in the proverbial coffin (I know it sounds like I'm talking about Ronnie again, but no, I meant the GOP nomination), and well, I just happen to have a piece about that in a large metropolitan newspaper tomorrow.

Will link when it's up.


Oh boy, kids! It's interactive fun-time with MAD-LIBeralS!
Just fill in the words to create your very own tale!!

Once upon a time, many, many years ago--okay, 6-- people knew little about our current adjective president. Now, boys and girls, at that time, he thought that he was the center of the entire noun and that every citizen in the land and all of the noun revolved around him and his nouns. And he still does!

But wait! Soon, a/an
adjective prince/princess named proper noun discovered the truth. Why, he/she knew more about noun(s) than nearly anyone in Americaland! Especially how the earth revolves around the noun, not the president. And how, if not properly cared for, Mother Earth would turn into a very adjective, adjective ball of noun! And also how the Commander Guy's subjects aren't his subjects at all, but in fact, his nouns. The prince/princess banished many, many of the very things the president revered, like verbing detainees and verbing nouns during an election!

Finally, after not too long, there was a biiiiig Inquiry, called an Im-peach-ment. Can you all say "impeachment"? I knew that you could! And the very adjective, very adjective president finally went to proper noun. The citizens threw noun at him, and called him names, like adjective and noun. After decades, the former president of Americaland still hadn't learned the moral of the story, which is:

Never try to verb the people of Americaland, or they'll verb you until you verb.

The End

If it had been a Democratic male staffer,
he would have been looking for a female roommate.....


Put an ad up on craigslist looking for a room to rent and you never know who’ll get back to you.

One young man got a response from a legislative staffer to a certain Republican Representative from Ohio.

Subject: room From: [Redacted]
Date: Wed, May 02, 2007 7:55 pm
To: [Redacted]
** Avoid: wiring money, cross-border deals, work-at-home
** Beware: cashier checks, money orders, escrow, shipping
** More Info:

I am responding to your ad on the craiglist regarding a room to share.

I have a studio apartment in Falls Church (Oakwood Apartments), and need someone to help split the rent.

I’m looking for a friendly, responsible, non-smoking white male to share this very small one-room apartment. I hope you fit that description.

The sad thing is, there was never any reason for the guy to expose his biases so publicly — no sane black person would ever want to live in a studio in Falls Church with a Republican hill staffer.

And in Wonkettes' original article, it is intimated who the staffer works for.


It's easy to get them off the ship,
not so much for getting them back on.

White House struggles to fill senior posts

By Edward Luce in Washington
Published: May 8 2007 22:06 | Last updated: May 8 2007 22:06

The Bush administration is facing growing difficulties in filling a rising number of high-level vacancies following a recent spate of senior departures.

In the last 10 days alone Mr Bush has lost four senior officials and more resignations are expected to follow. “I wouldn’t describe this as disintegration,” said one senior official. “But there are worrying large gaps opening up and it is very hard to recruit high-quality people from outside.”

Hey!! Both Bob Jones University & Regent just had commencement!!!

No need to worry about that pesky "experience".

Today in the G.W.O.T.™.

US braced for higher casualties in Iraq assault

Al-Qaida's recruitment network busted

Cheney to visit Mideast, seek support for Iraq

'US obsessed with military solution in Iraq'

Pride and tears over rising toll of teenagers sent to war

Jordan orders retrial in case against al-Qaida

UK Afghan deployment 'beyond 2009'

Pentagon to 35,000: Prepare to deploy

Suicide car bombers leave 20 dead in Ramadi

VA told PTSD system flawed

Life blooms on the side streets of Baghdad

Not so positive.
Study: Child abuse, troop deployment linked

I'm only reading about this stuff and I want to hurt someone.

Needed By The MSM - A New Attack On Obama

Remember a few weeks ago, when the MSM was writing all those articles on how Sen. Obama lacked substance? Well, he's now given several major addresses, including this one yesterday in Detroit, where he called for higher fuel efficiency standards. Guess the MSM is going to need a new line of attack.

OMG. THESE are our "esteemed media elite"?

So, we're sending our soldiers over just to get killed? Bait?

Painfully stupid. Two brain cells away from summer squash.

Pat Robertson Dislikes Mitt Romney

This is soooo confusing. Pat Robertson doesn't like Mitt Romney. His TV Network, CBN, has been attacking Romney relentlessly. Today, they hit Romney for his principled stand against teaching intelligent design in schools. They also manage to insult Romney's religion in the process. Key graphs.

The Brody File is at it again. Another little scoop. According to an interview Mitt Romney did with The Boston Globe in December of 2005, the former Governor of Massachusetts said he was against the teaching of intelligence design in public schools. There are quite a few Evangelicals who believe the exact opposite; that intelligent design should indeed be taught in public schools alongside Evolution.


The last thing Romney needs is another reason for Evangelicals not to vote for him. His Mormonism is an issue for some. His past flip flops give some pause. Now, past statements against teaching intelligent design in public school. That may play well in a General Election but to put it in football terms, Mitt Romney needs to get out of the first rounds of the playoffs before he competes in the SuperBowl. The first round of the playoffs are the GOP Primaries. Evangelicals will play a key role, especially in the South. Romney wants to be the candidate for Evangelicals. John McCain and Giuliani less so because they've been painted as either a maverick or moderate. So that's why issues like this can hurt Romney more.

The quandry for me is "Who do I root for?" in this battle. Romney is a flip-flopping snake oil salesman, and Pat Robertson is an intolerant, bigoted snake oil salesman. Is there any way both can lose?

I don't know about this kids.

Arrests over US army base 'plot'

Fort Dix is used for military training
Six men have been arrested on charges of plotting to attack Fort Dix army base in the US state of New Jersey.

They allegedly planned to use automatic weapons "with the intention of killing as many US soldiers as possible", said the US Attorney's Office in New Jersey.


White House spokesman Tony Snow told reporters there was "no direct evidence" that the men allegedly involved in the plot had links to international terror networks.

"They are not being charged with being members of an international terror organisation," he said.

These guys sound an iota more threatening than the cretins caught in Miami not too long ago. If they were really hellbent on "terrorizing", why in the world would 6 guys want to attack a MILITARY base? (talk about outnumbered)

But then again, my jihadi radar isn't as fine tuned as Evil Screeching Viper Woman's.

Terrorist plot in Cherry Hill, NJ;
illegal aliens among alleged plotters;
a John Doe turned them in;
press conference at 2:30pm Eastern;
Fort Dix has been a refuge for ethnic Albanians;

update: details from the complaint
By Michelle Malkin · May 08, 2007 08:26 AM

Maybe a bit too finely tuned.


Is anyone really surprised that a Republican Congressman would quote the founder of the KKK on the floor of the House? And then be too stupid to even get the quote right?

Steve Benen has the goods.

Republicans: Not only racist, but like, really stupid.

Huzzah & About Time!!!

Brown plans to banish the legacy of Blair by engaging with Iran
By Colin Brown, Deputy Political Editor
Published: 08 May 2007

Gordon Brown is ready to hit the ground running after Tony Blair resigns with an ambitious strategy for his first 100 days in office that will herald a radical change of approach on the Middle East and the NHS and a clean-up of Whitehall.

He will use the departure of Lord Levy, the Prime Minister's personal envoy to the Middle East, to signal a fundamental change of approach on Iran and Iraq - where Mr Blair's foreign policies have bequeathed a legacy that could cost Labour the next general election.

As a priority, the prime minister-in-waiting will seek to engage Iran directly in talks over the future of Iraq - possibly through the EU - soon after Mr Blair quits in June. Mr Blair was reluctant to criticise the Bush administration after the White House rejected the recommendation of the President's Iraq Study Group to hold talks with Iran. The US has since begun to shift, but Mr Brown believes a major push towards engaging Iran in the Middle East must be made to avoid a disaster in the region.

Poodles no more.

Buried in the middle of a story about NBC Nightly News moving to a new set, and the things people found when they were cleaning out their offices....

* A January, 1999 memo from our Investigative Producer Bob Windrem quoting his intelligence sources as saying "Bin Laden is full-tilt coming at us..and as hard as he can."

The memo also goes on to quote the sources as saying "There is no evidence of a link between Bin Laden and Saddam Hussein."

Thanks for the heads up Mr Windrem.

Monday, May 07, 2007

Payback's a bitch for all those stupid "Mick" jokes.

An Irish Taste for Real Estate in Manhattan

Published: May 8, 2007

They live an ocean away, but that has not stopped the Irish from lining up to buy condominiums in Midtown Manhattan, often years before they are built.

In some cases, entire buildings or large blocks of apartments in unfinished high-rises are being sold to Irish investors hungry to own a piece of New York City.

Neil McCann, an entrepreneur in Belfast, joined the rush of would-be Manhattan landlords last year when he said he signed a contract to buy a one-bedroom apartment near Gramercy Park for $600,000.

“It’s an Irishman’s dream to be able to go to Manhattan and be able to buy property there,” said Mr. McCann, 36, who added that he hoped to buy more New York apartments.

With a weak dollar, Mr. McCann said, the New York apartments are relative bargains compared with real estate in Ireland and Britain.

After a long economic boom that earned their country the nickname the Celtic Tiger, the Irish are flush with cash and searching the globe for places to invest it.

The westward flow of money “seems to be another example of how, in the wake of the Celtic Tiger, the relationship between Ireland and the United States has flipped,” said Linda Dowling Almeida, who teaches Irish studies at New York University.