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GOP says killing endangered species is best way to protect them. I swear.

So apparently the Bush administration has decided that it's time to ease restrictions on the killing, capturing and importing of endangered species. And why would they want to do this? The answer, to anyone who's been following the antics of the Bush administration over the last couple of years, should be quite familiar - they believe that killing and capturing endangered species is the best way to protect them. Isn't it obvious? Here's how it works: part of the money spent by U.S. zoos and circuses to import endangered animals would be simply be funneled back to the animals' country of origin to support conservation projects. Clever, huh? The more endangered animals we import, the more money goes overseas to help protect them. In fact, if you think about it, the more animals we remove from their natural habitat, the more money will go back into their conservation, and the more animals there will be to capture or hunt! It's brilliant! Reopen the ivory trade - soon there will be wild elephants teeming across the Serengeti! Build more whaling ships - before long the oceans will be crammed full of whales! Put a price on Pandas' heads - and you'll have Pandas as far as the eye can see! I can't understand why nobody but the circus, zoo, pet industry, and hunting lobbies thought of this before now...

From DEMOCRATIC UNDERGROUND Top Ten Conservative Idiots List.


(TALLAHASSEE) In another disturbing indication of rampant inbreeding among the Bush Family, Florida Governor Jeb Bush signed an executive order today placing all comatose or potentially vegetative patients on pre-emptive life support to ensure they will be able to cast ballots in the 2004 presidential election.

"It is what God would want for them," said Bush, adding "Many of these people are brain dead. Therefore, we think it is obvious that they would vote republican if presented the opportunity to do so.

"The fact that the liberals in the Democrat party would try to take their vote from them by allowing them to die with dignity just smacks of pandering!" continued Bush. He was wrapping up an appearance at the Gay Cuban Christian Veterans conference in Kissimmee.

Bush promised the group he'd sign legislation granting each Gay Cuban Christian Veteran a new Volkswagen Cabriolet and matching his & his monogrammed robes with each "Proof of Electronic Vote" receipt turned in.

"For too long," he told the group of Latino bears and twinks, many of them ocassionally gasping for breath as a result of Gulf War syndrome, "for too long, the democrats have used the names of the deceased to pad voter rolls!

But now, by keeping the braind-dead on prepetual life support, we can ensure a loyal base of republican voters for the Bush family cleary through the next century!"

When asked how he intended to pay for such an expensive plan, Bush claimed "Little bro will give some more tax cuts to Dad and Uncle Dick and the gang. In time, the cuts will make their way back into the economy, which the people will use to take vacations in Florida, thereby filling our state coffers with all the money they spend while they're here."

President Bush said Karl Rove could not be reached for comment. -


Can't get your way with wascally wepubwicans? Maybe these guys can teach you thing or two about style...

A 17-year-old boy, after receiving a free Krispy Kreme doughnut at an Erie, Pa., store promotion, stepped back in line for another but was refused. According to the Erie Times-News, he returned a few minutes later with a McDonald's sack over his head and asked for a doughnut but was again refused. Then he fell to the floor and flailed his arms and legs, demanding another free doughnut, and was cited by police for disorderly conduct. [Erie Times-News, 8-25-03]

In Edmonton, Alberta, in July, Anthony Alan Burton pleaded guilty to a 2002 robbery that went down this way: He had wrapped his head in gauze, covered his face with silicon putty and rouge (and oversized glasses), grabbed a Samurai sword, walked into a Jehovah's Witnesses hall, and screamed, "I am the evil that you have read about! This is the face of evil!" He was in the middle of collecting cash and credit cards from everyone when the police arrived. (A psychiatrist had testified that Burton had run out of medication several days before.) [Edmonton Journal, 8-1-03]

Speaking of lame criminals...

In an August story about the driving record of U.S. Rep. Bill Janklow of South Dakota (who had just killed a motorcyclist in a collision), the Sioux Falls Argus Leader reported that Janklow's defense (that he had to swerve to avoid another vehicle) was the same one he had used for each of three previous collisions (one swerve was for an animal, not a vehicle), and that in none of the four instances was there any corroborating evidence of the other vehicle or animal. [Sioux Falls Argus Leader, 8-21-03]

*Source: News Of The Weird

Tell Us How You Really Feel
Ari addresses the impending doom

ARI: First off, let me warn you that this briefing will be, uh...brief. As many of you know, it has been yet another difficult week for the president, and Scott McClellan is not proving effectual at the lying and double-speak which were the the hallmarks of my tenure as Press Secretary. Consequently, you see the entire fabric of the White House unravelling at the seams.

I'll direct the first question to Dana Bash, from CNN. Dana...

Dana Bash: It's pronounced DAN-ah, Mr. Fleischer, sir. Short a.

ARI: No it isn't.

DB: Excuse me? It's my name, sir. I think I know how...

ARI: You don't know shit, you little barbie doll! You were about to ask me some softball question about the president's visit to Asia, weren't you?

DB: Well, I...uh...

ARI: I knew it! You were! The fucking White House rats out a CIA operative to shut up her husband, the president lies about the motives for war, our children's chilldren's children will stil be paying for this goddamn fucking fiasco long after the Cheney and Bush great grandkids have squandered their inheritance on a war for mineral rights on the goddamn moon, and CNN and Fox and MSNBCBSABC will still be prattling on about some pro athlete who boinked an illegal space alien or some such shit!

DB: Sir, are you alright? I just...

ARI: NO, I'M NOT ALRIGHT! I am goddamned pissed is what I am! I stood out here day after day and lied through my teeth, and they've squandered all of it! Everything! Theyve already looted all the damn money and stashed it in the Caymens, now they're all gonna get nailed before I can cash in my options! I sold my soul to the devil and the freakin' devil is goin' down! It's always my luck, miss DAN-ah Bash! What the fuck kind of name is that anyway? D'jer parents name you after a goddamn frat party?

DB: Does anybody have the number for 911?

ARI: Where's that fat-ass Helen Thomas? -

An educated electorate is the right-wing's worst nightmare! Learn their tricks and tactics in this enlightening slide presentation...

Volume 2, Number 9


"To talk about "corporate greed" is like talking about "military weapons" or something like that- there just is no other possibility. A corporation is something that is trying to maximize power and profit: that's what it is."
- Noam Chomsky, "Understanding Power", 2002

Regula to punish opponents of Labor-HHS bill

By Hans Nichols

The House Republican leadership has endorsed an effort by Rep. Ralph Regula (R-Ohio), an appropriations cardinal, to punish Democrats en masse for their blanket opposition to the Labor, Health and Human Services and Education spending package.

Regula’s plan to redirect all potential Democratic earmarks to vulnerable Republicans would breathe new life into a principle that Republican leaders have long wanted their more accommodating appropriators to enforce: If Democrats vote against appropriations bills, they shouldn’t expect special projects earmarked for their districts.

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) suggested that the potential punishment might be “criminal.”

“This could be — this could be — I don’t know, these kinds of threats, do they border on the criminal?” she said.

Rep. Robert Menendez (D-N.J.), the Democratic Caucus chairman, called it “a clear declaration of war.”

"Regula said that, currently, no money is set aside for Democratic projects and that the structure of the bill is unlikely to change."

But Speaker J. Dennis Hastert (R-Ill.) commended the normally go-along, get-along Regula for his partisan fortitude in yesterday’s GOP conference meeting.

The $470 billion bill, currently before a House-Senate conference, has roughly $1 billion set aside for special earmarked projects in lawmakers’ districts, said Jim Dyer, staff director of the House Appropriations Committee.

Hastert’s words of encouragement were delivered at the Republican conference, said a GOP leadership aide. House Majority Leader Tom DeLay (R-Texas) also is supportive of the strategy, said his spokesman, Stuart Roy.

“I pointed out to leadership that not one Democrat voted for this bill, in subcommittee, in committee and on the House floor,” Regula told The Hill.

“So I gather they didn’t like it much and wouldn’t want any part of it,” he said.

Regula said that, currently, no money is set aside for Democratic projects and that the structure of the bill is unlikely to change.

Hastert’s endorsement, and the support of House Majority Leader Tom DeLay (R-Texas), are strong indicators that Regula’s final bill will not include any money for Democratic projects, said GOP leadership aides.

However, a GOP leadership aide cautioned, “Nothing’s final until the bill is final.”

Since Regula’s plan to scotch all House Democratic earmarks would not affect specific projects inserted by the Senate, some House Democrats could still find projects in their district funded at the behest of their senators.

Republican leaders are pleased with Regula’s hardball approach because they believe it could send an important message to Democrats. CONTINUES AT THE HILL

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He offered a reassuring voice to Viet Nam era America, but Walter Cronkite has some harsh words for Iraq era John Ashcroft

By Walter Cronkite

President Bush's televised answer to the growing concerns of many - including some Republicans - about the powers granted to him in the USA Patriot Act was to ask for even stronger measures, particularly the expanded use of "nonjudicial subpoenas." That means a federal agency such as the FBI can write its own subpoenas to conduct a search - no judges needed.

Unfortunately, security and liberty form a zero-sum equation. The inevitable trade-off: To increase security is to decrease liberty and vice versa. In the past, such trade-offs have been temporary - for the duration of the crisis of the moment. But today, we cannot see an end to the War on Terrorism, and that forces us to decide how secure we have to be and how free we want to be.

By delivering the speech last week himself, Bush added presidential heft to the issue and took some of the heat off of his attorney general, who is seen by many as the heedless champion of security at any price.

"Nothing so clearly evokes Torquemada's spirit as Ashcroft's penchant for overruling U.S. attorneys who have sought lesser penalties in capital cases. The attorney general has done this at least 30 times since he took office..."


W Doesn't Stand for "Wetlands" -- "Kudos...for “Ducks Out of Water?” (F&S Report, August) pointing out the devastating environmental policies advocated by the Bush administration. The Republicans’ pledge of “no net loss of wetlands” is about as reliable as the now infamous 16 words used in the State of the Union address. For too long, the GOP has received the “hunting vote” and failed to deliver on its promises. We have options, and it’s time to start considering them."

Letter to the Editor in Field & Stream Magazine.

In his 2 1/2 years in office, Attorney General John Ashcroft has earned himself a remarkable distinction as the Torquemada of American law. Tomas de Torquemada was the 15th century Dominican friar who became the grand inquisitor of the Spanish Inquisition. He was largely responsible for its methods, including torture and the burning of heretics - Muslims in particular.

Now, of course, I am not accusing the attorney general of pulling out anyone's fingernails or burning people at the stake (at least I don't know of any such cases). But one does get the sense these days that the old Spaniard's spirit is comfortably at home in Ashcroft's Department of Justice.

The Patriot Act is much in the news, as Ashcroft and his minions seek both to justify its excesses and strengthen them, thus intensifying its dangerous infringements on the Bill of Rights.

There was something almost medieval in the treatment of Muslim suspects in the aftermath of Sept. 11. Many were held incommunicado, without effective counsel and without ever being charged, not for days or weeks, but for months or longer, some under harsh conditions designed for the most dangerous criminals.

It was in the spirit of the Inquisition that the Justice Department
announced recently that it would begin gathering data on judges who give sentences lighter than called for by legislative guidelines.

Nothing so clearly evokes Torquemada's spirit as Ashcroft's penchant for overruling U.S. attorneys who have sought lesser penalties in capital cases. The attorney general has done this at least 30 times since he took office, according to the Federal Death Penalty Resource Counsel. In several cases, Ashcroft actually has overturned plea bargains negotiated by those government prosecutors.

The New York Times editorialized that the attorney general seems to want the death penalty used more often.

Ashcroft is not alone in this. His boss, while governor of Texas, seemed never to have met a death sentence he didn't like. The two of them represent a subdivision of the Republican Party known as the "social conservatives," who often have favored the use of government power to police moral issues they view as modern heresies, such as abortion, homosexuality and obscenity. They contrast with those Republicans who tend to resist such uses of federal power and can generally be counted on to defend individual rights.

What makes this administration's legal bloodthirstiness particularly alarming is the almost religious zeal that seems to drive it. So, what we are seeing now is a confluence of two streams of American thought. One of those streams represents those who believe security must have priority over civil rights. The other stream represents those who believe that civil rights must be preserved even as we prosecute to the hilt the war on terrorism.

Our liberty could drown in the resultant turbulence of these colliding currents.

Walter Cronkite has been a journalist for more than 60 years, including 19 as anchor of the CBS Evening News. SOURCE

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All around the first world, neoliberal economists and their conservative/neoconservative political puppets are calling for the destruction of the welfare system.

They claim that this is necessary to keep their respective economies "competitive" - while they simultaneously call for the elimination of barriers that put a break on the escape of businesses and industries to the third world.

In the interest of "competitiveness" they call for the weakening of trade unions, the easing of labor regulations.

All told, they want to take away from the first world the advantages of being members of the first world -- in order to make bigger profits.

At the same time, these minions of special interest call on the lowering of taxes for the wealthy, claiming that it is necessary in order to improve the respective economies.

From what I've seen, the past 30 years have hardly been a period in which capital has been lacking for the build! ing up of industry. The wealthy are wealthier than ever before, and the trend is for the rate of increase of wealth is growing while the wealth of the poor and middle classes is declining.

Are so many people so deluded as to believe these venal turds?

These venal turds seem to forget that their wealth comes from the consumption of goods and services by the masses. Decrease their wealth and a time will come when they will consume less - and their wealth will cease to increase.

If the purpose of impoverishing the 1st world was to improve the conditions of the third, I might consider their plan before discarding it. I would like nothing more than to see the 3rd world prosper, and realize that certain sacrifices will have to be made by the 1st world for this to happen.

But the neoliberal plan is not about helping out the poor, it is about taking advantage of the poor. They are charging the 1st world a watermelon, paying the third world a peanut, and keeping the difference. And ultimately they're taking away the peanut too, because the businesses that export their production to a 3rd world country will move to another once local conditions cease to be profitable - leaving a vacuum behind in their stead.

We can all thank the SOB Hayek for this "brave new world" and his concept of the return to feudalism. - "purpleskinnedet," The Titty Board

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A Buzzflash reader says what many of us have wanted to scream at the top of our lungs on every street corner for ages now.

By Steven C. Day, via Buzzflash

How often during the last year has someone ridiculed you, scoffed at you, belittled you or even questioned your patriotism because you had the audacity to question the wisdom of invading Iraq. Once a week? Once a day? Every freakin’ time you turned around?

Well, here we now stand, our nation stuck in the quagmire of quagmires, with no apparent way out. The casualty list keeps rising. The damage to our national reputation keeps growing. And the drain on our national treasury keeps draining. We are, in short, in the deepest of deep trouble.

And it was all so unnecessary:

Do you remember Barbara Tuchman’s "The March of Folly?" If so, you probably also recall that her definition of folly involved the strange recurring pattern by which governmental leaders throughout history have taken steps manifestly contrary to their nation's interests, despite being warned by contemporaries of the foolishness of their actions. Can anyone with an ounce of intellectual honesty doubt that the War in Iraq meets this definition?

But, like it or not, that war is now the "reality on the ground." We're stuck there like a fly glued to a no-pest strip and we're not going to get completely free for a long time. This means, of course, that as angry as opponents of the war are, and rightly so, we must, nevertheless, look forward. We must push for solutions (like giving the international community through the U.N. the things it wants, needs and deserves as the price of greater international support), instead of just complaining bitterly over mistakes and lies that are now part of history. But, even with that said, there is one other thing we need to do – we need to tell all of those rats who hounded us for all those months and especially Bush himself one small thing –

"We told you so."

So here is my personal "I told you so" -- just one very small voice out of many.

Back just a few days after Sept. 11, I posted a column expressing my profound discomfort over the reckless way Bush had started to use the word "war." Here's a small snippet:

  • Given the sophistication of the attacks and the degree of the damage done, it is easy to see why so many people, including the president, are calling this an act of war against the United States. Even the frequent comparisons to the attack on Pearl Harbor have the ring of truth. But is all this bellicose language really wise? Should we really be using the words of warfare, the most potent words in any language, in such an unrestrained way?


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I'm pulling 'em out of the back seat, and putting 'em on the front burner. Or some other equally over heated metaphor.

By Me, dammit!

I launched this site to showcase an animated Flash movie I was making, "Bitch," and to possibly raise some money to help me finish it. It has been a couple of years now, the site is bigger than ever, I added Not Banned Yet and I'm drawing editorial cartoons faster than I can update. Not only that, traffic to "HOO Cares!" (another site addition) is growing and I am beginning to receive inquiries about publishing it, despite having not drawn a new strip in a few months.

For HOO Cares! to make it into syndication would be -- well, let's just say I'd consider it a happy thing. It has been a life-long goal/dream, quite literally. Any editors out there looking for the next big strip? E-me, let talk!

Classic understatement aside, I think the time is really right for "HOO Cares!" I began the in strip in 1997, and set it aside as I pursued other projects. Now, it is a good time to re-focus my political activism, specialize if you will, and spend more time on HOO Cares! and health care issues.

I want to take advantage of the political climate to help find an appropriate audience for the strip, and thus, its message. If you are reading this page, that already indicates a degree of political involvement...this comic is a natural for you! It is about politics, big business, and a doctor's office. Give it a look, and I'd appreciate it if you'd send a recommendation to anyone you think might like it, and maybe even the editor of your local newspaper.

Kind of like a modern day "I want my MTV " type thing. Print a strip off the site and send it to the paper with a note saying "Hey, please put this on your comics page!"

As for Not Banned Yet, I am going to keep drawing editorial cartoons. Or lushly painting and coloring them in Photoshop, as the case may be. I'm loving it, but I have a backlog of cartoons to finish. Some are becoming outdated before I can publish them.

In light of the fact that I don't even have time to draw all of the ideas I've already scrawled across countless envelopes and Dunkin Donuts napkins, it seems crazy to spend a lot of time cut-and-pasting headlines for NBY.

Democratic Underground, BartCop, Truthout and a whole bunch of other sites are much better suited for that type of mass dissemination of information. Hell, those places are where I get much of my material from, and many of you probably do, too.

My site is so small compared to DU et al, (a little over 5900 unique visitors last month) that I doubt anyone is relying upon me for the latest developments. So I am planning to feature a few particularly noteworthy headlines with links (instead of complete stories), combined with the original content from contributors and the voices in my head. This will allow me to lavish more attention on my cartoons and finding a distributor for them, while spending less time attempting to stay ahead of the breaking news.

So now, for the first time in the two years since I started this site, I'm going to ask directly...would you please consider making a donation? As I've stated, I don't currently have an agent or an editor or publisher, but I'd like to plug away at this a bit longer before I take such drastic action as putting on a tie or something.

Get my original sketches and ink drawings with your donation to NBY!

If you are the artsy type, consider this an early warning and/or a heads-up for holiday giving; I am about to begin an experiment, beginning with the design updates to my site. To anyone willing to contribute over a certain amount via Pay Pal, Amazon or direct payment, I will send an original sketch from one of the cartoons on this page and in the archives, along with a signed hi-resolution color print of the cartoon the sketch is from.

How cool is that?

If I happen to also land a big gig off this site, you'll already have a collectible-in-waiting! I have not decided on the amounts yet, and the art will be first-come, first served. If you think you might be interested the artwork from a particular cartoon from the archives, and want to get a head start on the throngs of collectors likely to clogging me e-mail box...uh...ahem...anyway, e-mail me or just go ahead and make a donation. We can work something out! - RMcG

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