Mercury Rising 鳯女

Politics, life, and other things that matter

Archive for March 18th, 2007

Who Ya Gonna Believe?

Posted by MEC on March 18, 2007

When Groucho Marx asked “Who are you going to believe, me or your lying eyes?” it was funny.

When the people involved in the smear campaign against Valerie Plame in effect ask us that, it’s just stupid.

In a comment on this post, whig points us to a post in cannablog that zeroes in on a statement that should settle once and for all the question of whether Valerie Plame’s CIA status was classified information.

From the hearing transcript:

HENRY WAXMAN: General Hayden and the CIA have cleared these following comments for today’s hearing.

During her employment at the CIA, Ms. Wilson was undercover. Her employment status with the CIA was classified information, prohibited from disclosure under Executive Order 12958.

At the time of the publication of Robert Novak’s column on July 14, 2003, Ms. Wilson’s CIA employment status was covert. This was classified information.

Ms. Wilson served in senior management positions at the CIA, in which she oversaw the work for other CIA employees and she attained the level of GS-14, Step 6, under the federal pay scale.

Ms. Wilson worked on some of the most sensitive and highly secretive matters handled by the CIA.

Ms. Wilson served at various times overseas for the CIA.

It can’t be clearer than this. By clearing that information to be made public, the head of the CIA confirmed its truth. Valerie Plame’s employment status with the CIA was classified information, prohibited from disclosure under Executive Order 12958.

This unambiguous and authoritative statement will not stop The Usual Suspects from continuing to claim that Valerie Plame was not a covert agent. I won’t be a bit surprised to hear them claim that the Honorable Mr. Waxman was lying about General Hayden reviewing and clearing the statement. They can’t do anything else, in fact, because they’ve made too much of a commitment to their own position to admit they’re wrong.

The thing is, the only way to agree with the rightwingers’ claims is to decide that everybody else is lying: not just that Valerie Plame is lying, but that Patrick Fitzgerald is lying, Henry Waxman is lying, Michael Hayden is lying, former CIA agents Jim Marcinkowski and Larry Johnson are lying. And really, what are the odds that all these people, who have heretofore had sterling reputations, would be lying now?

Posted in Congressional hearings, Valerie Plame | 1 Comment »

Bush’s War Makes Saddam Hussein Look Good

Posted by MEC on March 18, 2007

Four years after U.S. troops “liberated” Iraq from Saddam Hussein Iraqis long for the good old days when the dictator kept a lid on factional conflicts.

In interviews across Baghdad, Iraqis said they’re tired of waiting for better days when each morning brings new terrorism. Trapped in their homes, afraid that death will knock, they’re worn down, they said.

Law and order — even under a dictator who killed thousands and tortured many others — was better than this, many said. Even those who are glad to see Hussein dead expressed a longing for more orderly times.


Layla Mohammed, a Sunni Muslim mother of three, remembered that heady day four years ago when a noose tightened around the neck of Hussein’s statue…. The life of freedom she was promised never came. Her sons are trying to flee the country. She can’t afford to keep her house warm, and no longer goes to her pharmacy in Hurriyah, a once mixed-sect neighborhood that was emptied of most Sunnis in December. When Hussein was executed, she told herself, “There goes the one man who could stop this bloodbath.”

Ahmed al Yasseri, a Shi’ite, summarizes daily life in Baghdad: “We envy the people who die in one piece now.”

Posted in BushCo malfeasance, Iraq war, real journalism | Comments Off on Bush’s War Makes Saddam Hussein Look Good

Update Mexico: March 18th, 2007

Posted by Charles II on March 18, 2007

“Low intensity conflict” is probably the best description for what is going on. Calderon is making a big show of cracking down on drug runners:

Hundreds of Mexican soldiers have taken over the police headquarters in the eastern Tabasco state… Now the police themselves have come under suspicion of being connected to the drug gangs, says the BBC’s Duncan Kennedy in Mexico City. …Last year at least 2,000 people were killed in drug-related violence across Mexico.

I wish I believed that something was actually going to happen. Tabasco is a PAN stronghold (though also the state of origin of Lopez Obrador).

Narconews has a very powerful film called The Blue Nightmare that shows what happened in Oaxaca. Take the time to watch it.

There is an attempt to privatize Mexican Social Security by diverting funds into an investment plan run by PRIists La Gordita  and Joel Ayala to be invested preferentially in real estate, road construction, electric utilities, and the oil sector. In other words, to prop up the Mexican stock market. Using political figures that parallel Ken Lay and Karl Rove in their probity.

In the Yucatan, a paramilitary called OPPDIC is terrorizing the locals (an account in English, via NarcoNews and from whose title the opening of the present post is drawn is here).

The PRD is experiencing internal conflict. Some members are concerned about the potential for self-dealing and loss of focus.

There’s lots more, but as I have predicted, not much is going to happen on the surface until there’s a recession.

Posted in Mexico | 1 Comment »

Welcome To Another Edition Of “If The Democrats Did This It’d Be All Over The Evening News”

Posted by Phoenix Woman on March 18, 2007

More juicy revelations from the GOP’s New Hampshire phone-jamming scandal.

Posted in beat the press, BushCo malfeasance, corruption, election theft, GOP/Media Complex, Republicans, Republicans acting badly | 2 Comments »

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