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Archive for September, 2004

Survivor: The Presidential Debate Edition

Thursday, September 30th, 2004

My rapid response to the first presidential debate: It was once said of George W. Bush that watching him get through a debate is like watching a wobbly waiter weave among tables while desperately trying to balance a heavy serving platter above his head. You think he’s going to crash at any moment, but somehow […]

Gaming The System: ‘It’s Good To Be An Indian’

Wednesday, September 29th, 2004

My comprehensive 7300 word-long feature piece on the California Indian Gambling industry is now posted at L.A. Weekly. Please take a look at the whole piece. I cover the three-way battle now underway to control the expansion of California’s Indian casinos that — in terms of revenue””will surpass Nevada by the end of this decade. […]

Fisking David Brooks: Iraq Is Not El Salvador

Tuesday, September 28th, 2004

American soldiers are now dying in Iraq so that country can get to elections in January. But no one wants to ask what those elections will achieve, if anything. Time to talk about that, I think. New York Times op-ed columnist David Brooks argues today that the 1982 election in El Salvador organized by the […]

Hari to Hitchens: ‘Come Home’ [Updated]

Monday, September 27th, 2004

Hardly a day goes by when some or another lefty email blast clogging up my Inbox doesn’t denounce, revile, indict, or curse Christopher Hitchens. I got tired of this ritual a long time ago. Not only because I count Christopher as a friend. But also because I admire his intelligence and talent — even while […]

Pinochet Interrogated

Sunday, September 26th, 2004

The former Chilean dictator Augusto Pinochet was formally interrogated on Saturday about his role in the disappearance of twenty among more than a thousand victims who vanished in the hands of his security forces. The half-hour session took place in Pinochet’s mansion and was conducted by the courageous Chilean investigative magistrate, Juan Guzman. I had […]

‘A Double-Blind Experiment’

Friday, September 24th, 2004

Millions of words are being spewed and spent on the current presidential election. But over a luncheon today at USC, former New Yorker staff writer and prolific author Lawrence Weschler neatly summed up the whole affair in one nifty paragraph. I wasn’t taking notes, but paraphrasing very closely this is what he said: We’re currently […]

Flash! Allawi Endorses Bush [Updated]

Thursday, September 23rd, 2004

Photo: 1966. Prime Minister Nguyen Cao Ky Reassures LBJ: “Don’t Worry. Be Happy!” What a fool I’ve been. I thought we were spending $200 billion and investing untold number of American lives to help bolster the Iraqi government. But apparently I had it wrong. Turns out to be the other way around. The Iraqi government […]

41 Reasons to Dump George W. Bush

Wednesday, September 22nd, 2004

Did anyone notice what George W. Bush mumbled yesterday when he was asked about a National Intelligence Estimate (read CIA) n July that said the best to be expected in Iraq was a tenuous stability and that the country might descend into civil war? Bush’s dumbfounding answer: “The CIA laid out several scenarios that said […]

Blog Stats: A Quarter-Million and Growing

Wednesday, September 22nd, 2004

Sometime Tuesday evening we hit a milestone on this blog when we crossed the mark of 250,000 total visitors since we started up a little less than six months ago. During that first month of April there were sometimes as few as 50 or 75 visits per day. That figure built quickly. It was boosted […]

War Talk…

Monday, September 20th, 2004

Six weeks out from the election, finally, John Kerry moved aggressively toward defining his position on Iraq in a major address he gave today at NYU. He blasted the Bush administration for what he called its “colossal failures of judgement.” That’s obvious, isn’t it? Now, if only Kerry could delay the election until the beginning […]

Guess Who…

Monday, September 20th, 2004

Take a look at the text below in italics. These are excerpts from a new column just written by”¦ well”¦ you guess. Is it Howard Dean? Jesse Jackson? One thing for sure, we know it’s not John Kerry: When Baghdad fell, Gen. John Abizaid estimated the number of enemy insurgents at about 5,000. After a […]

How Can You Discredit Cold-Blooded Killers?

Saturday, September 18th, 2004

I’ll keep this short. It’s far too beautiful a day to dwell on things that set my teeth chattering — like Naomi Klein. But alas, Klein — who has been a respected luminary among a young generation of dissidents– now seems to be headed defintively around the bend. After her piece of a few weeks […]

What Me Worry? Only 250 Dead This Week [Updated]

Saturday, September 18th, 2004

The conventional wisdom is that we’re in the home stretch of the election. To me it feels more and more like the Twilight Zone. Sorry to pummel this dead and decaying horse, but the Kerry campaign now has a new message every day, meaning no message at all. Today, it was all about Halliburton. Give […]

The National Guard Story: Dems Don’t Get It

Wednesday, September 15th, 2004

Finally an incisive piece on why the Bush National Guard story is a net loser for the Democrats. A veteran contrarian lefty, writer Doug Ireland skewers the DNC for being dumb enough to actually invest in the campaign to “prove” that Bush”¦ that Bush.. um”¦what? Got into the National Guard thanks to Poppy? And then […]

Kaching! Only 48 Shopping Days Left Before November 2nd

Wednesday, September 15th, 2004

The real winner of the coming election in November — either way– will be the top drawer corporate donors that underwrite both major political parties. John Kerry may be a Brahmin windsurfer married to a billionaire. And GW Bush was certainly born into one of the most powerful families in America. But the real elites […]

Turning the Corner in Iraq

Tuesday, September 14th, 2004

Looks like the war in Iraq is finally turning a corner. Against us, that is. “It is beginning to look like, and feel like, civil war” says Guardian Baghdad correspondent Luke Harding. Indeed. As I write, 70% of Iraq remains plunged in darkness. Fiery attacks on a national oil pipeline earlier today melted high-tension lines […]

The Fuck Factor: Graydon Carter To The Rescue

Monday, September 13th, 2004

Just what the Democrats needed in this dire moment. Who comes along to save them and drive the ultimate stake into the heart of George W. Bush other than: G-R-AY-D-O-N C-A-R-T-E-R!!! Or for those more in the know, Graydon Fucking Carter. I just saw him on MSNBC pitching his new anti-Bush book (the 589th by […]

Some Frank Talk

Sunday, September 12th, 2004

I refused to get drawn into the “debate” over Bush’s National Guard records. I just don’t care. This election campaign continues to be about nothing. And this records stuff is a whole lot more about that nothingness. We ought to talking about, say, today’s gruesome body count of 80 or more dead coming out of […]

Early Obits for Kerry: WaPo and NYTimes

Sunday, September 12th, 2004

That didn’t take long, now, did it? On Friday the Washington Post carried a high-profile piece openly suggesting that it’s time to stick a fork in the Kerry campaign. And in Sunday’s New York Times, columnist Maureen Dowd follows suit. Both pieces single out Shrummie — Kerry confidante, veteran consultant, campaign profiteer and professional sycophant, […]

The Bush-Cheney Re-Election Recipe

Thursday, September 9th, 2004

Scroll down a bit on this page and you will find my report on having uncovered the secret recipe to re-tooling the Kerry campaign (see post titled “K-Street Veterans for Kerry”). Many of you excited readers wrote in and demanded I use my my journalistic prowess to hunt down whatever secret recipe the Bush campaign […]