"So, is all the information that Mr. Obama receives of the same nature?" - Mahmoud Ahmadinejad
Consider Hatch Amendment F-7, which adds "transition relief for the excise tax on high-cost insurance plans for any state with a name that begins with the letter 'U.'
Democrats have had what amounts to a two-word response to such amendments: Your mama. That's just about literally what Sen. Debbie Stabenow (D-Mich.) said the other day when Kyl proposed an amendment (C-10) that would prohibit the federal government from defining benefits that insurers must offer. "I don't need maternity care," Kyl reasoned.
"I think your mom probably did," Stabenow replied. - From Dana Milbank
One of the qualities that you must have to be a successful diplomat, besides a fount of patience, is that you must be a sleazebag. You cannot have morals, or, at least you cannot be guided by a sense of right and wrong, all the better to work with dishonest heads of state.
The UN had hired Peter Galbraith to work with their top point man in Afghanistan. He was outraged by the collusion of his boss, a true sleazebag, with Hamid Karzai over fraud in the recent Afghani election. He wrote a letter of protest to the UN, and in response: "The United Nations fired its No. 2 official in Afghanistan on Wednesday after the diplomat, Peter W. Galbraith, wrote a scathing letter accusing the head of the mission here of concealing election fraud that benefited the campaign of the incumbent president, Hamid Karzai. Just like in beuracracies everywhere, the UN rallies behind their top guy and let him rant in indignation over the allegation that he is a sleazebag, somehow reminding me of my old boss at the Pikes Peak Library... Mr Galbraith is considering putting in his resume to work for a Republican Senator or the State of California, where there is a certain sleaze factor that he is comfortable with. Keep those cards and letters comin' in, Pete...
Most general populations throughout the world consider their politicians to be dishonest and corrupt. If you are a relatively honest or idealistic one, you start out with two strikes against you. But its what you do while in office that ultimately seduces you and the wielding of power that corrupts you. Et tu, Obama?
And Iran isn't the only country that shows the danger of having its right wingers in power. Peru's ex-president Alberto Fujimori won election and vowed to get rid of the Shining Path, a militant Leftist guerilla group. He was sentenced to 25 years in prison for human rights violations, ordering two massacres of groups of prisoners, are you listening Mr Rumsfeld?
My favorite part of his story is when he knew that he was going to be indicted, he fled the country and went to Japan. The spin that he put on things was that he was going to run for office in Japan, and if he won, a new golden era of trading prosperity between Peru and Japan would begin. You see, he was doing all of this for the sake of Peru, he was not a crook...
He developed a large spy network and used it on his political opponents, pay attention Mr Cheney. In another trial that just ended, he was given six more years in prison for bribery and ordering illegal wiretaps. Good grief, get ready Mr Bush... I guess it could be worse, he could have been put in an American jail and never be heard from again, right Mr Noriega?
As every cloud has a silver lining, Mr Fujimori's daughter is running for president in the next election, and she vows to pardon her dear, sainted, and grossly misunderstood father. So there maybe hope yet in the future Scooter, if you vote for Lynne Cheney in 2010...
Another way I find it fascinating to watch countries like Iran and Iraq, is watching the evolution of their governments, as they try to adhere to democratic principles. They are painfully learning that religion and governing do not mix, and are slowly moving towards the separation of church and state.
In Iraq, the Prime Minister, Nouri Maliki has : "... formed a new political bloc to contest January's general election. The alliance will be called State of Law and will comprise of 40 political parties representing a variety of Iraqi religious sects and ethnic groups." The previous political alliance was a Shia coalition, formed from several religious groups and is favorable to the only other Shia led state, Iran. Mr Maliki wanted to form a broader base than a religious one, and he sees that as a way to further reduce sectarian violence as well as a way to win the next election.
time for some late night jokes:
"The former governor of Alaska, Sarah Palin, has completed her memoir, and it'll be in stores in November. So that's something to look forward to. A lot of people aren't taking her seriously. I've seen it. It's a big, huge book. But when you go into the store, you can use that big book to step up so you can reach a better book." --David Letterman
"The book will be out this November. Coincidentally, she was out last November." --David Letterman
"You know what happened one year ago today? The stock market dropped 700 points. One year ago today. Do you have any idea what that means? Neither do I." --David Letterman
"It's interesting now. A lot of people say, they're bragging, 'I didn't lose any money. I'm smarter than that. I didn't lose any money.' For example, Sarah Palin, the former governor of Alaska, did not lose a penny when the stock market tanked. You know why? She has all her money in pelts." --David Letterman
"Chicago, Illinois, wants the Olympics in 2016. Everybody is pitching in. Remember former Governor Rod Blagojevich? Even he's pitching in. He said if they send the Olympics to Chicago, he will throw in a US Senate seat." --David Letterman
"President Obama says he will use all of his powers of persuasion to get the Olympics in Chicago. I thought, well, great. It's worked pretty well so far with his healthcare plan. Good luck there." --David Letterman
"Do you folks remember Andy Williams? Fantastic singer. He says that President Obama is following Marxist theory. I said, 'That's interesting. I think I'm going to wait and see what the Andrews Sisters say.'" --David Letterman
"This is the best news I've heard in a long time. The CIA announced a brand new plan to capture Osama bin Laden. They're going to invite him to Zurich, Switzerland, to have him pick up a lifetime achievement award." --David Letterman
"Big healthcare news. This just happened. The public option backed by President Obama was just voted down by the Senate Finance Committee, or as supporters of universal healthcare call them, 'The Death Panel.'" --Jimmy Fallon
"The final tally was eight voted 'yes,' 15 voted 'you lie!'" --Jimmy Fallon
"I read about this today, too. Sarah Palin's 400-page memoir is going to be released on November 17th, and it's called 'Going Rogue: An American Life.' And critics say that it starts out okay, it get's really exciting and then confusing, and then the last 100 pages are blank." --Jimmy Fallon
"The book costs $24.99, but it has a $5,000 jacket." --Jimmy Fallon
"The President of the World Bank said yesterday that the euro could replace the American dollar as the new global currency. The Treasury Department is telling everyone to not panic, just calmly throw your money away." --Jimmy Fallon
"I was reading today about President Obama's new plans for education. I guess President Obama wants kids to spend more time in school. He wants them staying later in the day. That's not new. We had that when I was in school. It's called detention. I was there until 5:30, 6:00 every night." --Jay Leno
"And officials from the US, Great Britain, and France are demanding that Iran disclose all of its nuclear efforts after it was revealed that Iran had this secret nuclear facility. These Iranians, very clever at disguising it. They made sure nobody could find this place. They made the outside of it look just like a movie theater showing that new Megan Fox film." --Jay Leno
"Well, the 'New York Daily News' is reporting that John Edwards' former aide, Andrew Young, is now saying Edwards had affairs with many other women on the campaign trail. This sounds like the same trail Governor Mark Sanford was supposed to be hiking on." --Jay Leno
"To give you an idea how much Edwards was fooling around, it turns out half the babies he kissed on the campaign trail were his." --Jay Leno
David Letterman's Top Ten Sarah Palin Tips For Writing A Book
10. Close curtains so you don't get distracted by Russia.
9. Increase vocabulary -- use words like "slanket."
8. First buy yourself 100-grand worth of writing outfits.
7. Don't write a word until the check clears.
6. Limit yourself to one "you betcha" per chapter.
5. You can never have enough stories about ice fishing or killing things with your bare hands.
4. When in doubt, just type (wink).
3. Don't let writing cut into attending "Fire Letterman" rallies.
2. Have a book translated for sale to European countries like London.
1. I'll try to find ya some tips and I'll bring 'em to ya!