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September 20, 2005


Caught an Imus-Jim Nantz dialogue this am. Imus pointed out how the speech in NOLA was awful and that Bush 41 is looking like a great president thanks to his son. Nantz was the foil.

My, how the tide has turned.

While we're talking about incompetent (and corrupt) appointees, we need to start hammering hard about Safavian. He offers a little of everything--recognizable incompetence (to the people who worked for him), ties to Abramoff, and ties to early Katrina graft.

And while we're talking about legacy, perhaps it'd be more appropriate to talk about which scandal will blow up biggest and most historically. Of course, I'm a personal fan of the Plame Affair. And there's the AIPAC mess. But it's beginning to look like Abramoff will be the one that brings down a whole generation of conserative thugs.

And speaking (again) of legacy, Holden's starting a pool to see whether BushCo will break Reagan's record of appointees indicted or resigning in disgrace. Ah Ulysses S. Grant, where have the truly principled Potuses gone?

Everybody notice who got not one, but two by-name mentions in the SCOTUS story DemFromCT linked? Seven female judges are mentioned as under consideration for the O'Connor seat, and two get a second mention by name. The first was Janice Rogers Brown, whose mention is by way of reiterating how her odds are getting longer by the day. The second was -- are you ready for this, Mimikatz? -- Consuelo Callahan, the Dancing Queen of the 9th Circuit, whose second mention notes her Hispanic heritage, and that "President Bush has made clear that he would like to name a Hispanic to the court."

You heard that one here on July 3rd

Note also what yesterday'sSacramento Bee had to say on the subject:

For a number of reasons, several conservatives say they believe the president is adjusting his short list of nominees from one dominated by conservative, white men to one dominated by conservative women and minorities, with a particular emphasis on African Americans and federal judges who had been based in New Orleans until Hurricane Katrina.

That one you heard on September 4th

Ow! My shoulder! Well, at least I got my back-patting done.

The Dancing Queen! Who'da thunk it? She is certainly my favorite to bring a little shall we say salsa to the High Court under the quintessential white-bread Roberts, but I just can't see him taking that flyer. Edith Jones was described in the SF Chron article as too associated with his father. I absolutely agree about Janice Brown--she couldn't hold her tongue. Maybe we are back to Edith Clement?

And I definitely agree about pushing the Safavian scandal. he is tied to Abarmoff and Delay, but also to Katrina and the impending giveaway.

Meteor: EJ Dionne's column reprinted in the SF Chronicle today praises Portland's liveability program and its Rep Earl Blumenauer. Not exactly Eco-New Orleans, but he does talk about parks and open spaces in places where people shouldn't build and getting residents involved in the decisionmaking.

Ans speaking of competence and qualifications, this from Laura Rozen:

"FDA briefly appoints a veterinarian to heads its women's health initiative, then denies it."

and we haven't even mentioned John Bolton.

Why is it that the leading Republicans in Congress never have anything to say about these issues? At some point, doesn't somebody have the spine to say, "no, that person isn't remotely qualified, please send us another nominee Mr. President." If not them, who? Sure, maybe they won't be held "responsible" when things go wrong, but why would responsible people want the government run this way?

Regular readers will Note my incredulousness at the regular Dem bashing and Republican sucking up that takes place in The Note.

Much to my pleasure are these two blog posts:

Atrios Notes:

While We're on the Note

Maybe they missed the memo and thought International Talk Like a Pirate Day was actually International Talk Like a Fucking Moron Day, but what else is there to say about this statement:

The press and the Democrats are still demonizing Karl Rove's involvement in anything and everything, expressing shock and horror that a deputy White House chief of staff with wide-ranging applicable experience is helping to oversee the Katrina response.

What applicable experience does Rove have for overseeing a $200 billion reconstruction project? About as much experience as the Note has with the reality beyond their own asses, apparently. Note to the Note: Overseeing a massive political operation is not, in fact, they same thing as overseeing a massive reconstruction project. One involves much the same as your column does - an attempt to get people to believe in bullshit. The other involves actually getting something done.

Pre$$tutes (via Daou) has more.

From NRO (via Andrew Sullivan):

For the crime of noting that the president's speech didn't help his poll numbers, I'm getting battered by e-mailers who suggest, among other things, that I am somehow unmanly because I'm not "supporting" the president enough. I never thought a day would come when I -- the author of a book entitled Bush Country: How Dubya Became the First Great Leader of the 21st Century While Driving Liberals Insane -- would be accused of being a fair-weather supporter of GWB. Let me just try to explain something to my e-mailers. The president gave his speech Thursday night in an effort to reverse the decline in his political fortunes. That's why presidents give speeches in prime time -- both to inform the nation and to try to seize the upper hand in the political struggle. It appears his effort was unsuccessful, in part (I think) because he sounded like a Big Spender and alienated more Republicans without winning over more Democrats.

It may be that the best thing for him to do is just ignore these poll numbers. But they're there, and they're going to have an impact -- and the danger is that the impact they're going to have will be on public support for the mission in Iraq, where we cannot afford to fail. Bush supporters don't help him or themselves any by pretending his troubles are all due to the MSM. He has, for the moment, lost the country's confidence

We routinely condemn ourselves (Dems, Liberals) for our circular firing squads, but at least we criticize. Look at the cost to so many with pretensions of being "public intellectuals" of their sycophantic and mindless support of Bush. They reveal themselves as not only unwilling to be serious about public policy issues, they are really, as Podhoretz notes, doing their man no good at all. It just reinforces his bubble problem, which further reinforces his incompetence. It is so easy for a virtuous circle to become a vicious circle when the direction of the water changes.

To borrow from David Rees, the only policy that Chertoff is qualified to push is a fucking broom at wendy's.

Now, SUSA says Bush is in a lose-lose over his Katrina response and because of it, he's losing Republican support. That's because Dems, indies and progressives won't trust him and conservatives don't like his response proposals.

I wonder if Bush is trying to reinvent himself as a moderate Republican? That would explain his enthusiasm for New Orleans reconstruction spending, and appointing a woman or minority to the Supreme Court. So far it's not working, and the odds are against him, but who knows? Bush has changed his image before. First he was a "uniter not a divider" in the 2000 election, then after 9/11 he became The War President, and he's kept that going ever since. But his war image isn't looking so good now, so maybe it's time for another change.

Interesting thought, YK. The 'compassionate conservative' is back... except, it won't work. Bush is no longer an unknown.

BTW, Digby does a proper skewering of Cohen.

Yeah sure, Bush nominating minorities who are in full support of his NeoCon plan to destroy the Federal Government shows what a moderate he is. Just like Democrats didn't support Miguel Estrada for Washington's U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals because they were racists. Nobody buys these arguments except for people who are already in the choir - and even they have their limits. Not everybody is willing to have their reputation go down with this ship.

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