Thursday, June 30, 2005

Thoughts and prayers for servicemen killed

I'd just like to take a minute to express my condolences to the families of the soldiers who were recently killed in the helo crash, and to all the families of all the brave men and women who have been killed/wounded while serving their country.

As a (peacetime) Navy veteran who served just after the end of the Vietnam war, I don't know what it's like to serve during wartime putting their lives on the line for their country, but I have the greatest admiration for those who have.
And despite what any of us think about the legitimacy of this war, the men and women in harms way deserve our respect and so do their families.

Unlike many, especially those who got us into this war, they and their families have my utmost respect and gratitude. They didn't choose the easy road.

I hope President Bush (&Co.) have many restless nights reflecting on what they've done, knowing that Iraq was a optional war. And that they're personally
responsible for all the lives lost, and all the soldiers who've been maimed.

I don't get the feeling that they will ever own up to it. I think they're either in serious denial or some just don't care, somehow rationalizing it, and how sad is that for them and for the country as a whole.

Another case of Republican hypocrisy.

I think that most people would agree that allowing a representative from a country known for human rights abuses shouldn't be heading a UN committee on Human Rights. To most people that's just common sense.

So why is it that many House Republicans (who I recall expressing those same sentiments) sit idly by and through their actions/inaction are willing to let the Chairman of the House Ethics Committee preside over the Ethics Committee when he has his own ethics problems?

Our courts don't let accused criminals sit in judgement of themselves do they?
Of course not! So why is Dennis Hastert allowing this to happen?

It seems to me that especially in this case (as the saying goes, "The inmates are in charge of the asylum!").

Sometimes I'd swear that I've slipped into an alternate universe where up is down, and I'm just left shaking my head in disbelief. That happens all too often in these dark days of "King George".

Tuesday, June 28, 2005

The Height of Hypocrisy

Think Progress » On Day of Iraq Speech, House Conservatives Gouge Vets

While watching the President tonight surrounded by soldiers, think about this article.

You might also think about the multiple billions that are "unaccounted for" in Iraq.

The administration knows (despite what they say in public) that the VA does need an additional billion dollars (or more), but they don't seem the least bit interested in the 8.8 billion that's just "dissapeared" in Iraq.
They can send [literally] truckloads of CASH (Millions/Billions? We don't know) to contractors in Iraq without making them account for it, but spend a billion to help the brave soldiers who have served their country? Sorry folks, no can do....

And to have our president cloak himself in the flag and surround himself with soldiers (visually decieving the American people), especially on the same day his party REFUSED to help Veterans who don't have the top-notch health care that Congress has (the majority of whom fought in WWII to save the world as we know it), [is] the height of hypocrisy !

I wish that I had the vocabulary and writing skills to thoroughly express how wrong that is, but this is the best I can do at the moment.

Halliburton, the Media, the V.P., Questionable Food, and MORE

Before I get to my MAIN issues I want to say..

Senator Dorgan, as I watch you on C-Span today I agree with what you're saying but please
don't say that ANY soldier "won" his/her Bronze Medal. I realize that you mis-spoke and didn't mean to imply that war is some kind of game where a soldier can "win" medals.

I truly admire what you're doing but let's please choose our words carefully.

Aside from that, I think it's DISGUSTING and IRRESPONSIBLE that I haven't heard ANY of the examples of FRAUD (Halliburton's responsible for much of it) on the news !
My God! Feeding bad food to our soldiers! Feeding food to our troops that's been shot-up or blown up after picking out the shrapnel etc. from it, using outdated/expired food, etc..
How the HELL can ALL the major news outlets IGNORE this?

This is an OUTRAGE!

And to let the people who actually DEFEND this administration's sweeheart deals with Halliburton (by claiming that these things aren't true and only "political" attacks aimed at the Vice President) without INVESTIGATING, and then where appropriate, exposing and REPORTING to the American people THE TRUTH, is unconscionable!

By NOT reporting these types of things the media actually becomes part of a "cover-up".
It's not like [they] don't know about all of this...

I consider myself fairly well informed (much more so than the "average" American), and though I've heard about major fraud and abuses by Halliburton I wouldn't have known about the inconceiveable practice of feeding "questionable" food to our soldiers.

And now I have to wonder, who gets better food, prisoners at Guantanamo or our troops? I have to think that it's against any civilized code of conduct to feed potentially unsafe food to PRISONERS let alone OUR OWN TROOPS! As a veteran (and HUMAN BEING) it boils my blood!

Now on to ANOTHER fact that I only just learned while watching Air America Radio/The Al Franken Show (on Sundance Channel) last night.
The fact that all this time, this administration DID have a plan (the Future of Iraq Project*) ready to go for after we took over Iraq!
*This is a link to info I found via Google. It was NOT written by Al's guest, and I'm not sure that [this gentleman's] conclusion (that the State Dept. is equally responsible for the plan not being used) is true, but it does give some background information on the subject.

Now for the good (not really) part, this administration CHOSE NOT TO USE IT......(excuse me while I bang my head against the wall for a minute...)

HUH? Wha...? This is the first time I'd ever heard about any "plan", although I wasn't surprised that the administration chose to ignore something like this just like they chose to ignore the lack of evidence of WMD, and the fact that Ahmed Chalabi is a "less than truthful" person (to put it kindly).

That's right folks, our State Department spent 2 years (approximately) planning for a "possible" invasion of Iraq.

Could someone in the press pool at the White House PLEASE ask Scotty WHY this admistration chose not to implement this plan (over and OVER until he crys)? Not that there's a CHANCE that he'd actually give an HONEST answer.... (Boy, talk about a person lacking in MORALS, HONESTY, and INTEGRITY.)

And where's the news FOLLOW-UP about Tom Delay's unbelieveable remarks to the business people in the Marianas Islands and how he's "protecting" the owners of SWEAT SHOPS there?

Finally (for the moment), where's the coverage of the Saudi Aribian connection that has been written about so eloquently by Gerald Posner in "The Secrets of the Kingdom: The Inside Story of the US-Saudi Connection"?

It seems as though the people responsible for choosing what news the American people see and hear (all the major networks, newscorps, etc.) about would rather play advertisements from the Saudis saying what wonderful friends they are to us. If it wasn't such a discrace, it would almost be funny watching the Saudi ambassador dispute the facts with such a "innocent" (not to mention STRAIGHT)

What in the world is happening to our country?

What in the world has happened to our MEDIA? Didn't we USED to rely on them to dig into stories that the powers that be didn't want anyone to know about?

It seems that all anyone in this administration has to do is claim that "it's political" (or the like) and the (mainstream) media blindly accepts it.
Is that serving the public?
Does that help America in any way?

Sometimes I think that the only way to make a point that will be paid attention to is what we (those old enough to remember) saw during the Vietnam era. The image of a monk setting himself on fire in Saigon is one that I'll NEVER forget. ***CAUTION this links to a GRAPHIC photograph!

And this is only one of the HUNDREDS of cases of self-immolation during that era.

It's a sorry state of affairs when ANYONE feels that the only way to get through to their government is by publicly commiting suicide! And please don't anyone get me wrong... I'm NOT advocating that ANYONE do this, and [I] certainly don't plan to, but to even think about that says something about MY frustration with the (main stream) media NOT DOING IT'S JOB.

And the APATHY of a large portion of Americans just makes the job of covering up/ignoring the truth that much easier for those whose goal is just that....Keeping those Americans IGNORANT!

I say thank goodness for the INTERNET! Where I can read, watch video, and listen to podcasts that help fill in the HUGE gaps of ignored/unreported news, and in the case of "Media Matters for America", showing us exactly who's feeding us BS (they're VERY busy these days).

My top favorites are listed in my "Links" (Think Progress - Media Matters for America - Common Cause - The Huffington Post - FAIR - Daily Kos - and SO many others).

Also many thanks to all the authors who have done (and those continuing to do) the difficult research, and then written about the little-known and/or unreported stories that the scoundrels want to keep from US.

Monday, June 27, 2005

Secretary Rumsfield is holding a news conference

Does everyone have their BS boots on? It's getting deep fast.

Friday, June 24, 2005

Hey Rove, how does eternal damnation sound?

The Huffington Post | The Blog

Hey Rove, how does eternal damnation sound? 'cause that's what you're headed for... oh wait, I almost forgot, you sold your soul LONG ago.

You pathetic pile of dogshit.

I'm a veteran, and I'm PISSED!

Funds for Health Care of Veterans $1 Billion Short

As a veteran, this [literally] makes me SICK!

Wouldn't you think that with all the trouble recruiting soldiers these days, continuing to underfund VA Hospitals (who were in really bad shape BEFORE this. Go visit one if you don't believe me..) is the LAST thing our elected officials would do.

The person(s) responsible for the cuts must be heartless.

I'd bet that if THEY had to rely on the VA (I'm betting that they're not veterans) for their health care, instead of cutting a billion $$ they'd finally FIX the broken VA system.

It's tragic, it's disgusting, and unfortunately par for the course for the Right-Wingers currently gorging themselves in a bloody "feeding frenzy" of powergrabs and "payback".

The courageous men and women of the military who put their lives on the line for our country deserve the BEST care we can afford, not the WORST!

My God, who would even THINK of cutting an already underfunded Veterans Administration. How do you think this news is going to make the soldiers feel who are risking their lives in Iraq?
Of course that's one of the reasons the scumbags responsible for the cuts didn't want this news to get out.

This sounds ALL TOO familar.

BBC NEWS | Africa | Africa rejects action on Zimbabwe

Does anyone else see a similar disconnect between events on the ground and how governments are portraying them? I do. Those statements from the AU sound similar to what we're hearing from the Bush administration regarding progress (or the lack of it) in Iraq and Afghanistan. I must say that these denials from the AU are disgusting, disheartening and IMMORAL. I can't imagine anyone allowing something like this to occur when they have the power to stop it.

CORRUPTION is one of the greatest barriers to progress in this world.

Iraqis Tallying Range of Graft in Rebuilding - New York Times

Gee, I wonder why things are progressing so slowly in Iraq. Between Washington's refusal to provide enough troops and support, leaving TONS (literally) of high-grade explosives unguarded (US troops actually WATCHED as trucks carried it away), "independant" security personnel who aren't accountable to ANYONE, Halliburton getting no-bid contracts then overcharging/gouging Iraqis and American taxpayers, and finally Iraqis (bureaucrats and business people) themselves taking full advantage of the lack of OVERSIGHT/CONTROL and the disorganization inherent when rebuilding on such a massive scale while a war is going on.

I'll say it 'till I'm blue in the face... CORRUPTION is one of the greatest barriers to progress in this world.

My hat's off to all the DECENT Iraqis... Those in the government working to make a better future for their country AND ordinary citizens who have put up with SO much in the past 30 years or so.

Thursday, June 23, 2005

We're never going to get anywhere if we continue to allow Rumsfield and Cheney (and all the others) to blow sunshine up the collective American butt..

Top Commander Says Insurgency Still Strong - Yahoo! News

We're never going to get anywhere if we (and the MEDIA) continue to allow Rumsfield and Cheney (and all the others) to blow sunshine up the collective American butt, instead of ACCURATE assesments of progress (or the lack of it) !
Frankly, I don't trust people who refuse to admit when they're wrong.

Why isn't this being covered? CNN?, MSNBC?, Fox? (yeah, RIGHT!), CBS,ABC,NBC?

U.S. was big spender in days before Iraq handover - Yahoo! News

Could someone PLEASE tell me why none of the IMPORTANT stories are being covered by the MSM*?

Now it's not that I don't think that the "Runaway Bride" and a lost boy aren't news, it's that the MSM seem to think that it's more important to tell viewers what the Right-Wing sleazeballs think of the latest anti-Clinton book ('How the book could ruin Hillary Clinton's election chances'), rather than asking WHY lies and innuendo by "an anonymous source" were allowed to be published in another attempt to smear Mrs. Clinton, why the publisher can't be contacted to answer SERIOUS questions of libellous defamatory material his company published. Compounded of course by the ABSURD title "The Truth......."

The [majority] of the main stream media is seriously failing the American people. This is proven on a daily basis by going to "Media Matters for America" ( ).

Maybe the people responsible for choosing the news stories they cover don't think that Americans (and Iraqis) want to know that 8.8 BILLION dollars are unacounted for in Iraq. Or that the House Leader Tom Delay is corrupt and bullies his way through life with the help of other corrupted Republicans, or how [he] "rearranged" the Ethics Commitee to try to protect himself.

How about the fact that the whole idea of being "represented" in Congress is false now, taken over by record numbers of lobbyists, who in some instances are allowed to help WRITE legislation to the exclusion of anyone who disagrees with their wishes.

I see the majority of Americans blissfully going about their daily business, totally IGNORANT of what's actually going on in their own country getting their news spoon-fed to them by large corporations who care more about the bottom line and ratings, rather than providing their viewers with unshaded information (outside of "editorial" content).

I truly believe that if the media could/WOULD do their job without bias this would be a MUCH better world.
I know that it's not realistic to expect perfect unbiased reporting, but I do see some that comes close from time to time.

Here are a few things I've learned over the years:

- I can't count on TV "news" for the "truth".
- The majority of American people are basically IGNORANT
(and that's EXACTLY how Bush Co. wants it).
- Corruption is one of the biggest problems in the world.
- Republican lawmakers don't seem to care about the "common
people" (those who AREN'T members of the Country Club set).
- The current Bush administration can't be counted on to tell the
truth (if Scotty M. said that it was sunny, I would definitely have
to go outside and check).
- I could spend all day on this list and STILL not be finished.

Anyone care to add their OWN list?

Wednesday, June 22, 2005

So this is part of the "new" CNN, eh?

I turned on my TV this morning and the first story I saw was from Baghdad about residents dealing with a water shortage. At the end of the piece Miles O'Brien made a real heartless comment. I wish I could remember exactly what he said (unfortunately I didn't record it), but it was just some flippant comment that left me with the feeling that [he] couldn't care less about the plight of the people in the story.

A short while after that, Soledad O'Brien was interviewing two brothers from Cuba. One went back to Cuba for a visit from the US and while there he gave his passport to his brother (they were nearly identical) who then used it to leave Cuba for Mexico. Long story short, the brother left in Cuba was arrested when he tried to leave. He was recently released due to the negative publicity.

Here's what Soledad asked one of the brothers.. (paraphrased)

'Did you realize how dangerous this was?'

Now just take a second to think about that question.... (obviously Soledad didn't)

She was asking that question to two brothers who grew up in Cuba!

Instead of "kinder & gentler" CNN seems to be going for "meaner & dumber".

That kind of question is what I got used to hearing from ignorant young journalists during the war coverage, when one of them would ask something like, "where are you going to attack next?"
Or, " Exactly where is that top secret base?"

Maybe it's just that Miles isn't used to getting up this early, and he spoke without thinking. I certainly hope so. I hope that this isn't a sign of things to come.
One thing's for certain though, his heartless comments left a bad taste in my mouth.

Tuesday, June 21, 2005

Thoughtful (Hardball) questions, what a concept!

Poynter Online - Interviewing the President

And in addition to that, if we could just get honest answers from the President and his spokespeople (instead of the usual doublespeak/change the subject/BS/etc.).

Thursday, June 16, 2005

Wired News: Lawmaker Revs Up Fair-Use Crusade

Wired News: Lawmaker Revs Up Fair-Use Crusade

Isn't it odd (I mean, isn't it ABSURD) that with the backing of the NRA it's nearly impossible to enact any kind of gun legislation that would actually help Americans be safer (like that 50 caliber rifle that's powerful enough to take down an aircraft, or pierce armor-plated vehicles like armored cars and armored Wells Fargo trucks).

Now imagine that the companies that develop/sell p2p software had that same amount of lobbying power behind [them].

So what's wrong with this picture?

Instead of realizing that the nature of their business is changing, and that instead of lashing out at their perceived enemy, they would be better served by adapting and embracing new technologies and spending their considerable resources in a positive way, rather than making enemies out of potential customers!

The entertainment industry should have learned from prior experience (cassette/video tapes & associated hardware) to not waste time and resources fighting new technologies. With the current state of affairs NOBODY wins....

Wednesday, June 15, 2005

America, would you accept this kind of behavior from your children?

Think Progress » Condi Ducks Questions on Downing Street Minutes

Gee, I guess nobody knows nuthin'.... Huh....wha.. wasn't me, I didn't read it, I didn't see anything, I was just holding it for a friend....

Americans, think about this. If your children gave YOU excuses like the ones this administration has passed of (without question in the MSM) would you let them get away with it? If so, SHAME on YOU!

In my opinion, far too many Americans are IGNORANT of so much of the BS that this administration spews out, and it's obvious that we can't count on either the administration OR the MSM (Main Stream Media) for the TRUTH. Too many of them either don't pay attention
to the news, or they don't know any better and believe what they see on the nightly news (I should say, the MSM [sometimes] does their job, but not very often).

Sometimes I think that one of the few ways you can get a large segment of the American people to be aware of something is to flash it in front of their face 100 times a day/night like the "GEICO" commercials.

The working poor of America are being "Scrooged".

Think Progress » Minimum Wage: By The Numbers

The "working poor" in America are being "scrooged"! How can anyone realistically argue that the Minimum Wage SHOULDN'T be raised to a decent level (at LEAST above the POVERTY level!). This is an excellent list of facts to remind everyone how absurd the argument is of the "scrooges" who oppose raising it.

Sunday, June 12, 2005

WHo's going to stand up and STOP this feeding frenzy of CRIMINAL contractors?

Banned Contractor Soliciting Iraq Deals - Yahoo! News

Anyone think BUSH will do anything to stop it? How about Cheney?
Would you believe them if they said they would? Cheney states that the insurgency is on the decline... How's THAT for being in touch with REALITY?

I swear to God, when/if the whole story ever comes out about ALL of this administration's unethical and CRIMINAL behavior, by the way, John Kerry was exactly RIGHT when he was speaking (to an individual in the audience after his speech) about THIS administration being the 'most corrupt bunch of people....'.

If the American people were made aware..... oh yeah, I forgot, our MEDIA* doesn't have the BALLS (or maybe their corporate OWNERS have castrated them, or at the very least are holding them very tightly) to actually investigate any of this.

*With the exception of some EXCELLENT investigative journalists like Roberta Baskin at The Center for Public Integrity, FAIR, Media Matters, and others I can't recall or list fully here including many bloggers 'linked' to these web sites.

I could go on, (and ON), but I'm ruining my appetite for supper...

Thursday, June 09, 2005

TechTV makes a comeback (of sorts).

blogs | this WEEK in TECH

Like SO many others who were dissappointed when Comcast ruined TechTV's "Screensavers" program when they combined it with a 3rd-rate gaming network (although "Call for Help" is still available in Canada via "G4") I was happy to see that many of the old gang are collaborating on a "podcast" named "TWiT" (This Week in Tech). I urge anyone interested in "tech" to download their podcast (episodes 1-8 are available) and check it out.

The quality should be steadily improving as they straighten out equipment and distribution issues, and with the help of listener's support I see (that are offering additional bandwidth/alternate download sites) this latest endeavor by Leo Laporte and his compadre's should take off (actually, it's already "taken off" and they're struggling to keep up with the demand!).
I'm hoping that eventually Leo and the gang (Leo, John C. Dvorak, Patrick Norton, Kevin Rose, Yoshi ,...and....damn, MAJOR brain freeze, sorry excellent lab-rat-guy) will be getting "guests" like they did before Comcast killed their show(s).
Some of the biggest names in technology were frequent guests on the show(s) and I hope that Leo will be inviting them to the new show.

I'd also like some of the former "TechTV'rs" that have gone on to work for CNN (Erica Hill), MSNBC (Jennifer London), and others, to sit down with Leo (or at the very least do a "phone" interview) to "catch us up" on life after TechTV.

Please check it out.

This is [my] "Furl Archive" page (The HRHS1975 Archive)

LookSmart's Furl - The HRHS1975 Archive

Here's a link to my "Furl" (archive):

My (individual) problem (related to my "ADD" and other issues) is that I have [this] archive, 2 "blogs" (MSN Spaces and the one you're reading right now), another archive at "digg" (, and I [think] another account with ""....!

This always happens. They ALL seem really interesting, and I'd love to keep all of them up-to-date, but I have enough trouble just keeping up with my 3 email accounts..... I guess we'll just have to see which one(s) can keep my attention the best (NOT an easy task) and piss me off the least!*

*My "pissed-off" muscles get enough of a workout from reading the daily BS spewed by the Right-Wing scum inside the beltway, and the lazy "fluff" journalists who far too often just "parrot" the [inacurate/misleading] statements the overpaid GOP LIARS use to BS the American people.

Construction (right outside my window) is set to begin on June 27th.

Concord Monitor Online - Concord, NH 03301

How NICE! First of all, my apartment windows look out over the construction site. ...and when the building is finished, what WAS a very bright sunny apartment will be (literally) overshadowed by the new (taller) building... Not to mention the noise AND the fact that there's no parking provided for [us] tenants NOW, and losing 120 more spaces (even temporarily) will be a giant P.I.T.A.!

Saturday, June 04, 2005

Director Mueller, please listen to this man...

» FBI to Duh! itself, again | Open Source |

This is a recent article related to the one [below].

It's only money, right?

FBI to launch new computer system by 2006 | Tech News on ZDNet

If FBI director Mueller was a CEO or CTO, do you think he'd still have his job after a screwup like this?

I know this is kind of old news, but after reading this and a more recent article, it just left me shaking my head... Although when you think of it, that $170 million is pocket change compared to the 8.8 Billion dollars that's "missing" in Iraq.

And on another subject, it's funny how so many things go "missing" in Iraq.... Like tons of high explosives that some of our troops watched being removed from (Al Quaqua was it?) and now is probably being used for countless bombings, billions of dollars "unaccounted" for, and now we find out that much of the hardware for producing chemical and biological agents wasn't secured and is now missing !

I realize that it's a tough job, but what kind of idiots are running the show over there?

How can they consider this matter "closed"?

Pentagon: Koran Defiled

Where do I start?

The report came out LATE Friday... How conVENient!
"The inquiry found no credible evidence that a member of the Joint Task Force at Guantanamo Bay ever flushed a Koran down a toilet," Hood said. "This matter is considered closed."

-So it's not a problem for them that they had 5 confirmed incidents of desecration ?
" Lawrence Di Rita, a spokesman for Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld, said that military policy called for "respectful and appropriate" handling of the Koran. "The Hood inquiry would appear to confirm that policy," said Di Rita, who was traveling with Rumsfeld in Asia. "

-How do you figure? 5 incidents of desecration doesn't sound like "respectful and appropriate" handling of the Koran....
-But they seem to rationalize it because they ONLY found 5 incidents out of 1600 (and somehow I'm a bit skeptical that there were only 5, AND the guard's story about the wind... ""A guard reported that he was at fault," the report said. "The guard had left his observation area post and went outside to urinate. He urinated near an air vent and the wind blew his urine through the vent into the block. "

-And finally, it's VERY hard for me to believe that any of the Muslims at Guantanamo would desecrate their own Koran (or someone else's) when you realize how important the care and handling is to every Muslim. I get the feeling that just possibly those "incidents" never even happened, and it's a case of CYA.
I don't know enough about the subject though to say that it COULDN'T have happened, it just doesn't seem likely.
And the "water balloons" incident sounds to me like there was a serious lack of discipline.... hmmm, can you think of another military prison that had problems with guards and disipline?