Dicky's Doodles &Scribbles

Cartoons,editorials and comment about current events and more.

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Division In The Larry Liberal Household

McCain Chides Obama About "Experience"

Yesterday Presidential candidates, Senators John McCain and Barack Obama, exchanged barbs while speaking at different events.
McCain said "I have news for Obama. Al Qaeda is in Iraq. That's why it's called Al Qaeda in Iraq!" McCain has joined in the chorus of Obama critics who say he is inexperienced.
Obama responded at his event saying "I have news for John McCain...Al Qaeda was not in Iraq until George Bush and John McCain launched an invasion of Iraq."
Obama is right. And McCain has a history of losing his temper and of making some pretty stange statements. McCain has experience all right, but we don't need his kind of experience.
Note his diplomatic experience on display when he sang "Bomb Bomb Bomb, Bomb Bomb Iran..." to his admirers a while back. Pretty funny huh?
Note his independence, for which he is noted, as he has been kissing up to the radical, evangelical right, which he formerly and correctly attacked as being intolerant and imperious.
Note his desire to be considered a "Maverick" as he developed a humane and more realistic immigration policy than that which is favored by the far right. When he ran into static on this he promptly withdrew his horns and gave in.
Yes, McCain has some experience all right. Experience in kowtowing, caving in and flip flopping to attract some votes.

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Presidential Librairies

G.W. Bush Library Fund Seeks $500 Million In "Donations!"

From Center for American Progress Action Fund
Action Report 2-27-08

In Nov. 2006, President Bush launched "an eye-popping, half-billion-dollar drive" to raise funds for his presidential library. That campaign finally paid off last week when officials at Southern Methodist University (SMU) announced that the Dallas-based university will be home to Bush's $200 million library -- despite protests from faculty, administrators, and staff. The library facility will also contain an institute that will sponsor programs designed to "promote the vision of the president" and "celebrate" Bush's presidency. University of Louisville Professor Benjamin Hufbauer, an art historian who has studied presidential libraries, said the model agreed to at SMU was "totally different" from the approaches at other universities with presidential libraries. The institute that is part of the complex "has a partisan agenda -- that's very significant," he said, adding, "academics everywhere should be concerned about this" because it "goes against the idea of dispassionate inquiry." Dr. Susanne Johnson, an associate professor at SMU, explained, "The whole purpose of a library is for unfettered, unbiased, critically reflective academic inquiry into the administration of a given presidency. It's not to cheer-lead for a particular president. It's not to be groupies."

Monday, February 25, 2008

Obama In Kenyan Garb Is An Attempt To Perpetuate Link To Muslim Email Hoax.

G.W. and Putin in Shanghai

Hillary and Chelsea in Vietnam

A picture surfaced today that shows Barack Obama in some kind of traditional garb while on a visit to Kenya in 2006. This picture has been sent to news organizations, blogs and elsewhere.
This a crude attempt to help reinforce the Obama is a Muslim email campaign that has been going on for nearly a year now. Some have pointed the finger at the Clinton campaign but they, of course, denied that.
It is nothing but more cheap shot politics, like the McCain affair allegations, and I bet we ain't seen nothin' yet!
I quickly found and included a number of shots of prominent leaders and politicians looking foolish in indigenous dress while over seas.

GOP Going Forward; Looks To Future

Dr. James Orange Dies

Yesterday Dr. James Orange died at the age of 65.
Dr. Orange was one of Dr. Martin Luther King's lieutenants during the "Freedom Rides" and the Selma march and other events during the civil rights movement.
I had the pleasure of introducing Dr. Orange at an assembly several years ago at West Oso High School. He was a large, white haired man with a huge smile. He spoke about continuing to work for civil rights in the modern days.
I had been introduced as a blues player and they asked me to play a little harp during my introduction which I gladly did.
Dr. Orange said he was a big blues fan and mentioned Muddy Waters, Little Walter, John Lee Hooker and others as among his favorites. He said the Freedom Riders often sang and listened to blues and soul as they endured through their struggles.

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Kay Bailey Hutchison; Possible Veep?

As the 2008 election year moves along it may be time to start looking at possible Vice Presidential candidates. One person oft mentioned as a possible Republican veep candidate is the senior Senator from Texas, Kay Bailey Hutchison.
Hutchison first came into the view of the public at large as treasurer of Harris County. There she was dogged about questions concerning her treatment of employees and some ethical lapses.
She left that job before her term expired to become the Treasurer for the State of Texas. Before that term was up she ran for the U.S. Senate against Bob Kreuger, who was appointed by Governor Ann Richards to the Senate seat vacated by Lloyd Bentsen, who took a position as Secretary of the Treasury in the Clinton Administration.
Hutchison soon become a visible and vocal part of the Washington Republican establishment.
She is remembered for loudly and often blasting President Clinton for the U.S. involvement in former Yugoslavia. Her favorite critiscism was "We have no exit strategy." It's interesting to see she has never raised that question concerning Iraq!
There is also a lot of speculation, which seems more likely, that she will leave her post in the Senate, she already has demonstrated a clear pattern of leaving her offices early, and seek the office of Governor of Texas. She may well harbor Presidential ambitions and probably wouldn't be interested in being the nominee for Vice President in a year when GOP chances are looking slimmer by the day.
Below is a look at her campaign finance situation.
One of the most interesting things here is that she has raised $4,994,958 between 2003-2008 but spent only $1,136,716. According to these figures she has $8,314,309
in cash on hand. That's interesting! And it's quite a good start for a war chest, where ever she decides to run!
This information comes from a fascinating web site, Open Secrets.org, which provides contributor information for members of Congress and other good information.
Here is a link to Open Secrets.org

S E N A T O R (R - TX)
Kay Bailey Hutchison
First elected: 1993
Next election: 2012

2003-2008 Fundraising:
Cash on Hand:
Last report: December 31, 2007

2003-2008 Source of Funds
Individual contributions
PAC contributions
Candidate self-financing
2003-2008 PAC Contribution Breakdown
Ideological/Single Issue
How complete are this candidate's 2003-2008 campaign finance reports?
Full Disclosure
No Disclosure

Saturday, February 23, 2008

Cuba After Fidel; What's Next?

Friday, February 22, 2008

Dallas Police Relax Security At Obama Event On Order By Secret Service

Obama speaks at Reunion Center, Dallas

For some inexplicable reason, according to a story in yesterday’s Fort Worth Star/Telegram, The U.S. Secret Service told the Dallas Police Force to not follow normal security procedures concerning the admittance of people to the rally.
What’s this? There’s some ‘splainin’ to do methinks!
Here is the story:

Feb. 21, 2008
By JACK DOUGLAS Jr. Star-Telegram Staff Writer

DALLAS -- Security details at Barack Obama's rally Wednesday stopped screening people for weapons at the front gates more than an hour before the Democratic presidential candidate took the stage at Reunion Arena.
The order to put down the metal detectors and stop checking purses and laptop bags came as a surprise to several Dallas police officers who said they believed it was a lapse in security.
Dallas Deputy Police Chief T.W. Lawrence, head of the Police Department's homeland security and special operations divisions, said the order -- apparently made by the U.S. Secret Service -- was meant to speed up the long lines outside and fill the arena's vacant seats before Obama came on.
"Sure," said Lawrence, when asked if he was concerned by the great number of people who had gotten into the building without being checked. But, he added, the turnout of more than 17,000 people seemed to be a "friendly crowd."
The Secret Service did not return a call from the Star-Telegram seeking comment.
Doors opened to the public at 10 a.m., and for the first hour security officers scanned each person who came in and checked their belongings in a process that kept movement of the long lines at a crawl. Then, about 11 a.m., an order came down to allow the people in without being checked.
Several Dallas police officers said it worried them that the arena was packed with people who got in without even a cursory inspection.
They spoke on condition of anonymity because, they said, the order was made by federal officials who were in charge of security at the event.
"How can you not be concerned in this day and age," said one policeman.
JACK DOUGLAS Jr., 817-390-7700

Border Fence Is Another Bush Scam

The border fence is a horrible idea. It will cost millions of dollars to build and maintain and it will be utterly ineffective. It will not stop and probably wont even slow down illegal immigration. It will hurt our relations with Mexico and it will create a very negative image.
What's worse it is full of payoffs for Bush cronies such as Boeing which will contract to build the wall. Boeing! This a company that already gets billions in government contracts and now they are into fence building? Something really smells here!
The fence will go right through the campus at University of Texas Pan American in Brownsville, Texas. One member of the Homeland Security bureaucracy said that is necessary because illegal aliens might slip across the border disguised as students! Have you ever heard a dumber remark than that?
It is also interesting to note that the fence will go right through the property of many border land owners, some rich and some very poor. Some have had this property in their families for centuries. Many are unhappy about this. Homeland Security Director Michael (Skeletor) Chertoff told them to "Quit complaining!"
Some of the rich landowners here will get special considerations as shown in the following story from the Think Progress Daily Newsletter. Read up on Ray L. Hunt and the Hunt family in general, it is a fascinating story.
BUSH'S BORDER FENCE TO BYPASS PROPERTY OF WEALTHY DONOR: In October 2006, President Bush authorized the construction of a 700-mile border fence between the United States and Mexico. The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is facing strong opposition from Texans who don't want the fence cutting through their land. Unfortunately for these homeowners, DHS gave them only "30 days to change their mind or face legal action," and now U.S. attorneys "have begun filing lawsuits against the holdouts." While DHS has no problem pursuing elderly and struggling homeowners, it will conveniently leave untouched the border property of Dallas billionaire Ray L. Hunt. In 2000, Hunt was a Bush-Cheney "Pioneer," and more recently, he "donated $35 million to Southern Methodist University to help build Bush's presidential library." Daniel Garza, a 76-year old man who might lose his home to the border fence's intrusion, noted, "I don’t see why they have to destroy my home, my land, and let the wall end there." Pointing across the street to Hunt's land, he added, "How will that stop illegal immigration?"

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Hillary On The Ropes In Texas?

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Should Congress Investigate Baseball?

This afternoon I heard a fellow named Tom Foreman ask “Did Congress have nothing better to do than waste time on a hearing on major league baseball?”
I don’t listen to the whacko talk shows but I have heard that many, right wing ones particularly, have been ridiculing these hearings as unimportant and a waste of time.
Really? They don’t think the question of steroid abuse is important? They don’t think that cheating in the ranks of baseball is important?
Hmmm…that’s really odd. First of all there have been by now hundreds of high school and other amateur athletes of various sports die or become severely impacted by steroid abuse. Baseball has the least stringent regulations in major league sports concerning steroids. If major league baseball has been seen to be tolerant of the misuse of these drugs then that’s the wrong message.
This not a subject worthy of Congressional investigation?

GM Chair Bob Lutz Says Global Warming Is "Crock Of Shit!"

Ever wonder why GM keeps building environmental disasters like Hummers and other big, heavy fuel inefficient vehicles? Perhaps the attitudes of the company's leadership can explain it.
GM chairman Maximum Bob Lutz was quoted in D Magazine as having said at a private luncheon that global warming was a "total crock of shit."
Lutz had more to add. "I'm a skeptic, not a denier. Having said that, my opinion doesn't matter."
As for his support of the G.M. electric car the Volt, Lutz said, "I'm motivated more by the desire to replace imported oil than by the CO2 [argument]."
Lutz also said that hybrids like the Prius make "make no economic sense."
G.M. has been in the forefront of the SUV craze over the last 15 years or so. They make money on these things because the law concerning CAFE standards doesn't apply to them. They have ben able to skimp on safety and fuel efficiency because SUV's have been classified as "trucks" and thus have had not had to meet standards in effect for passenger cars. This is changing but not soon enough.

Friday, February 15, 2008

Court Order! We Don't Have No Court Order! We Don't Need No Steenkeeng Court Orders!

Why Are We Poor Mama?

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Hillary's Last Stand To Be In Texas?

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Scalia Shows Contempt For Constitution

Scalia demonstrates how to break fingers during interrogations.

In an interview last month on BBC's "Law in Action" program
Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia said he had no problem with using torture on terror suspects.
"It seems to me you have to say, as unlikely as that is, it would be absurd to say you couldn't, I don't know, stick something under the fingernail, smack him in the face. It would be absurd to say you couldn't do that," said Scalia.
Once again Scalia has demonstrated he would be cast more correctly in The Sopranos or the God Father than as a Supreme Court Justice.
"I suppose it's the same thing about so-called torture," he said in the interview. "Is it really so easy to determine that smacking someone in the face to find out where he has hidden the bomb that is about to blow up Los Angeles is prohibited by the Constitution?”
Said Scalia.
"Europeans get really quite self-righteous, you know, (saying) 'no civilized society uses it.' They used it themselves - 30 years ago," he said, adding that a majority of Europeans probably supported capital punishment anyway.”
This is the mindset of the man who conservatives fall all over themselves telling the public that he is an example of the kind of judge that should be stacked onto the Supreme Court if a Republican conservative wins the presidential election.
Scalia said Europeans should not look to the U.S. for the law and he wouldn’t look to Europe for legal precedents, a strange argument indeed. Especially strange when the origins of our jurisprudence lie in English Common Law and the principles of the Athenian Democracy as well as other legal codes in history. Thankfully our founding fathers were not as smug and arrogant as Scalia.

Putting The Squeeze On The Middle Class

Bush economic policies have put the squeeze on the middle class. His war and his tax cuts for the wealthy have put the government in a worsening monetary shortfall. And the money spent on the war is not even counted when the budget figures are drawn up so we don't even have an offical accounting of our huge deficit in spending.
And Bush seems not to realize that many Americans exist on bare stipends from Social Security, many live in poverty and squalor. He thinks the poverty line is around $100,000 a year! He has cut food stamp programs and plans to cut social security
disbursements in 2009.
Thank goodness our long national nightmare is going to come to an end, but we have a year to go! Aaaaarghh!!!

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

The Great Dictator-Chaplin's Masterpiece!

Yesterday I saw "The Great Dictator" and "Mr. Smith Goes To Washington" on Turner Movie Classics. What great movies. I doubt it is a coincidence that these two flicks were shown in the midst of a Presidential campaign. These two films clearly illustrate what is at stake concerning the leadership and politics of a nation.
I had seen them both before but, like in many things, as I age I see things with different eyes than in my youth.
I heartily reccomend watching them again and if you have never seen them then by all means do so. You will have a wonderful experience.
Below is the speech Charlie Chaplin made near the end of the movie. It is moving, dynamic and totally relevant to our times.

Chaplin’s speech in the Great Dictator 1940

Hynkel: I'm sorry, but I don't want to be an Emperor - that's not my business. I don't want to rule or conquer anyone. I should like to help everyone, if possible -- Jew, gentile, black man, white. We all want to help one another; human beings are like that. We want to live by each other's happiness, not by each other's misery. We don't want to hate and despise one another. In this world there's room for everyone and the good earth is rich and can provide for everyone.
The way of life can be free and beautiful.
But we have lost the way.
Greed has poisoned men's souls, has barricaded the world with hate, has goose-stepped us into misery and bloodshed. We have developed speed but we have shut ourselves in. Machinery that gives abundance has left us in want. Our knowledge has made us cynical, our cleverness hard and unkind. We think too much and feel too little. More than machinery, we need humanity. More than cleverness, we need kindness and gentleness. Without these qualities, life will be violent and all will be lost.
The aeroplane and the radio have brought us closer together. The very nature of these inventions cries out for the goodness in men, cries out for universal brotherhood for the unity of us all. Even now my voice is reaching millions throughout the world, millions of despairing men, women, and little children, victims of a system that makes men torture and imprison innocent people.
To those who can hear me I say, "Do not despair." The misery that is now upon us is but the passing of greed, the bitterness of men who fear the way of human progress. The hate of men will pass and dictators die; and the power they took from the people will return to the people and so long as men die, liberty will never perish.
Soldiers: Don't give yourselves to brutes, men who despise you, enslave you, who regiment your lives, tell you what to do, what to think and what to feel; who drill you, diet you, treat you like cattle, use you as cannon fodder. Don't give yourselves to these unnatural men, machine men, with machine minds and machine hearts! You are not machines! You are not cattle! You are men! You have the love of humanity in your hearts. You don't hate; only the unloved hate, the unloved and the unnatural.
Soldiers: Don't fight for slavery! Fight for liberty! In the seventeenth chapter of Saint Luke it is written, "the kingdom of God is within man" -- not one man, nor a group of men, but in all men, in you, you the people have the power, the power to create machines, the power to create happiness. You the people have the power to make this life free and beautiful, to make this life a wonderful adventure.
Then, in the name of democracy, let us use that power! Let us all unite!! Let us fight for a new world, a decent world that will give men a chance to work, that will give you the future and old age a security. By the promise of these things, brutes have risen to power, but they lie! They do not fulfill their promise; they never will. Dictators free themselves, but they enslave the people!! Now, let us fight to fulfill that promise!! Let us fight to free the world, to do away with national barriers, to do away with greed, with hate and intolerance. Let us fight for a world of reason, a world where science and progress will lead to all men's happiness.
Soldiers: In the name of democracy, let us all unite!!!

Hannah, can you hear me? Wherever you are, look up, Hannah. The clouds are lifting. The sun is breaking through. We are coming out of the darkness into the light. We are coming into a new world, a kindlier world, where men will rise above their hate, their greed and brutality.

Look up, Hannah. The soul of man has been given wings, and at last he is beginning to fly. He is flying into the rainbow -- into the light of hope, into the future, the glorious future that belongs to you, to me, and to all of us. Look up, Hannah. Look up.

Mr. Smith Goes To Washington...A Must See Movie!

I suppose most folks my age have seen "Mr. Smith Goes To Washington" but have you seen it lately? Watch it again and watch it closely. It is a great movie about how politics work. It is more relevant these days than ever!

Monday, February 11, 2008

Bush Is Driving Ship Of State On The Rocks!

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Bush Says He Will "Help" McCain If He Is Nominee

WASHINGTON (AP) John McCain is a "true conservative," President Bush says,although the likely Republican presidential nominee may have to work harder to convince other conservatives that he is one of their own.
McCain "is very strong on national defense," Bush said in an interview taped for airng on "Fox News Sunday."
"He is tough fiscally. He believes the tax cuts ought to be permanent. He is pro-life. His principles are sound and solid as far as I'm concerned."
But when asked about criticism of McCain by conservative commentators Rush Limbaugh and Ann Coulter, the president said, "I think that if John is the nominee, he has got some convincing to do to convince people that he is a solid conservative and I'll be glad to help him if he is the nominee."

No More Bushes; No More Clintons

I am ready to make a deal with the Republicans. If they nominate no more Bushes the Democrats will nominate no more Clintons.
Also, many have said that John McCain, if elected, would basically be a third term for G.W. Bush. His policies and world views are nearly identical. I am definitely against the idea of a "third term" for G.W. Bush so I say "NO' to John McCain.
Barack Obama would be a clean break with the sorry politics of the last 20+ years and I think our country, and the world, needs a break. Barack in '08!!

Friday, February 08, 2008

He's Back! Cheney Back In South Texas On Hunting Trip!!

Armstrong Ranch

Vice president Dick Cheney is back in South Texas today for another hunting trip at the ranch of his friend Anne Armstrong. Two years ago Cheney shot wealthy Austin attorney Harry Whittington while hunting for quail here. No word if members of the hunting party will wear bullet proof armor. Mr. Whittington will not make the hunt this time.

Mitt Out Of Luck

Mitt Romney has left the race. That just about does it on the GOP side. John McCain will waltz on to the nomination.
Good riddance to Mitt, he is a hollow man in a tailored suit, pushing the divisive rhetoric and backwards ideas of the neo-cons. They didn't believe he was really one of them. They don't think John McCain is one of them.
Will we see a right wing "Ralph Nader" emerge to run independently of the GOP?
Well goodbye Mitt and don't let the door hit you in the ass on the way out!

Thursday, February 07, 2008

Super Market Sticker Shock

According to figures from the U.S. Department of Labor consumers in 2007 paid 36% more for eggs, bread, milk, chicken and other foods than the previous year.

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Obama, McCain Big Winners On Super Tuesday

Bulls And Bears Battle On Wall Street

Stocks have been on a roller coaster lately. Many are feeling a bit queasy but today's headlines might offer some reassurance...for a day or two anyway!

Stocks Rebound After Tuesday's Plunge
Posted: 2008-02-06 12:07:56
NEW YORK (AP) - Stocks regained some ground Wednesday as many investors, though still uneasy about the economy, decided to buy back into a market battered a day earlier by recession worries. The Dow Jones industrials rose more than 100 points after falling 370 on Tuesday.

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Super Tuesday...Will We Know Who The Nominees Will Be?

First Week Of February…Just Super!

Americans are flushed with a super abundance of super events this week!
Sunday's Super Bowl in Phoenix,which really was super this year, drew record TV audiences.
The underdog New York Giants, (who actually play in New Jersey) beat the near perfect new England Patriots in a super upset.
Super Bowl MVP Eli Manning made a couple of super throws and turned the game around.
Manning hit David Tyree in the fourth quarter to put the Giants temporarily ahead. New England came back and scored late in the period and it seemed they might complete their super season.
But Manning whipped his Giants back down the field and completed the amazing throw to Plaxico Burress who made a super catch and the Giants won the Super Bowl!
Now it is Super Tuesday and this is the biggest day of the Presidential campaign as more states hold their primaries on one day than ever before. This is the closest thing we have ever seen to a national primary.
At this point the races have begun to crystallize as candidates continue to fall along the way side.
Giuliani has thrown his support to John McCain. Will that make a difference? We’ll just have to wait till the results come in tonight. Huckabee is looking for his miracle in the bible belt states but he is plunging fast. Ron Paul? Who’s he? His surprising early support has faded after people took a close look at his history and some of his strange ideas.
Super Tuesday will weed out the pretenders and shake out the survivors.
Things are looking pretty good for the Democrats overall. G.W. Bush, Cheney, Rove et al have given most of the United States “Republican Fatigue.” You know they are in trouble when Rush Limbaugh and his brand of bloviating blowhards viciously attack John McCain as a “liberal!”
Of course the Democrats can still blow it. Looming over their party is the dark shadow of Ralph Nader whose ascetic glare is pointed in their direction.
Will Rogers once said “I do not belong to an organized political party. I am a Democrat!”
Football fans have nothing over political junkies who revel in all of the excitement and suspense of Super Tuesday!
What a week! For many Americans it is just “Super!”

Monday, February 04, 2008

Bush 2009 Budget D.O.A.

In a last act of paying off his supporters President G.W. Bush announced the 2009 budget proposal. It is a gift to the wealthy and takes the ax to those on Medicare and Medicaid, the unemployed, education, child health programs and just about everything worthwhile the government does.
Though this budget is for all pratical purposes D.O.A. it is a mirror into Bush's legacy of largesse for the wealthy and hostility to the poor.

Sunday, February 03, 2008

No Nader, Please!!

Erstwhile consumer advocate, present Democratic nemesis, Ralph Nader was on CNN this morning basically confirming what he has been hinting for a while, that he is gearing up for yet another run for the White House.
This is not good news for those who blame Nader for saddling us with G.W. Bush in 2000 and 2004. Might Nader ensure that we will see President John McCain inaugurated next January?
Nader rails against the corporations and rightly so. He also condemns Clinton and Obama for taking money from corporations. Running an effective campaign costs millions. All major politicians and, I suspect, Nader himself, has to take money from corporations because, as bank robber Willie Sutton allegedly said when asked why he robbed banks, "That's where the money is!"
Nader emerges, locust like, every four years to rail against corporate-politicaal coziness. He needs to do the ground work between the elections, not when elections loom ahead.

Friday, February 01, 2008

Bush 2009 Budget

G.W. Bush will leave a lot of problems behind as a part of his "legacy." One of these is his 2009 budget which is chock full of goodies for the wealthy and a freeze on many social security benefits and other programs for lower income Americans.

Exxon Rakes In Record Profits!

While government big wigs argue as to whether or not we are entering a recession, or already in one, something was in the news today that should make everyone who is struggling to make ends meet very happy. Like death and taxes one thing is certain, even in the midst of uncertain economic times, Exxon always makes a profit, and once again a record profit!
Exxon announced a record profit for the last quarter of last year and for the entire year itself. The staggering amounts were $40.6 billion for the year of 2007 and $11.7billion for the final quarter!
These were record amounts for any U.S. company in history!
Something to think about as your February heating bills climb and gas prices hover around $3.00 per gallon and promise to rise further still when summer comes.

If Politics Was Like NASCAR