No Posting/Fund Raising

No posting until I can get rid of the asshole spammers and some other stuff. We are also upgrading the comments and to a new version of MT.

Also, blogads are helping, but I need to raise about 150 bucks for domain name and server related things. IF you are interested in chipping in, please hit the paypal button here:

Thanks in advance!


So what exactly is the damned point?

The Supreme Court warned police on Monday to stop using a strategy intended to extract confessions from criminal suspects before telling them of their right to remain silent.

The court, on a 5-4 vote, said that deliberately questioning a suspect twice the first time without reading the Miranda warning is usually improper.

But the court left open the possibility that some confessions obtained after double interviews would be acceptable, providing police could prove the interrogation wasn’t intended to undermine the Miranda warning.

Criminal defense attorneys and civil libertarians had complained that the strategy was being used to get around the Supreme Court’s landmark 1966 Miranda v. Arizona ruling, which requires that suspects in custody be told they have the right to remain silent.

The court had considered the treatment of murder suspect Patrice Seibert. The Missouri Supreme Court ruled that the two-step interrogation process used in her case was improper a decision upheld by the nation’s highest court.


The Sovereign State of Iraq

From Baghdad:

The U.S.-led coalition transferred sovereignty to an interim Iraqi government Monday, speeding up the move by two days in an apparent bid to surprise insurgents who may have tried to sabotage the step toward self rule.

Legal documents handing over sovereignty were handed over by U.S. governor L. Paul Bremer to interim Prime Minister Iyad Allawi in a small ceremony attended by about a half dozen Iraqi and coalition officials in the heavily guarded Green Zone.

“This is a historical day,” Allawi said during the ceremony. “We feel we are capable of controlling the security situation.”

Bremer will leave Iraq sometime Monday, coalition officials said on condition of anonymity.

Although the interim government will have full sovereignty, it will operate under major restrictions — some of them imposed at the urging of the influential Shiite clergy which sought to limit the powers of an un-elected administration.

The new government’s major tasks will be to prepare for elections by Jan. 31, handle the day to day running of the country and work along with the U.S.-led multinational force, which is responsible for security. The Iraqis can in principle ask the foreign troops to leave — although it is unlikely this will happen.

However, the United States and its partners hope that the transfer of sovereignty will serve as a psychological boost for Iraqis, who have been increasingly frustrated by and hostile to foreign military occupation. U.S. officials hope that Iraqis will believe that they are now in control of their country and that will take the steam out of the insurgency.

Good luck.

I fully expect Democrats to state the early transfer is a symbol of failure somehow.

*** Update ***

Oliver delivers:

So, its pretty obvious that we’re in total control in Iraq. So much so that we have to do the handover in secret, two days before its scheduled, transferring not much power to Iraq’s new unelected leadership.

That means our soliders can come home, and everything’s hunky-dory, right?

MORE: Can anyone say “get out of Dodge“?

Is it so hard to understand that Bremer had to leave so that Iraqi’s would truly believe they were in control?

*** Update #2 ***

No one can eclipse the breathless hysteria of Ezra (he should have read his partner’s much more reasonable post). He did everything but mention the ‘Brutal Afhan Winter’ and throw in a ‘quagmire’ or two:

If you needed convincing that the situation has deteriorated and the Iraqis are far from prepared to assume sovereignty, you need look no further, the Bush Administration proved it today.

The political calculus here was a simple one. The June 30th transfer would symbolize success; make it a ceremonial event fitting of a historic occasion and the political rewards would be enormous. At the very least there’d be a significant uptick in support for the war and satisfaction with the outcome; sham or not, a milestone would have been reached. The downside of this plan was its importance, were insurgents to substantially interrupt or wreck the proceedings, it’d be further evidence of our weakness and exponentially more damaging due to the event’s significance.

But even I didn’t expect this. Not only did the Bush Administration sacrifice the political benefit of the transfer, they did themselves harm. Pushing it up two days and conducting it in a tiny room with few watching leaves the media with no relevant spin save “they were afraid of insurgent attacks”. Stunningly, they essentially admitted that they can’t protect the country and they’ve no control over the events.

If any attacks come in the future, or on the 30th, they will be on the sovereign state of Iraq, and not the CPA. Why don;t people understand why this is so important? This was a brilliant move, and it also signalled that not only is the Interim Government ready, but it was ready early to take the reins.

A couple of weeks ago on the anniversary of D-Day, MSNBC ran a program trying to guess what media coverage of D-Day would be like in the modern era. They then put on a 1 hour show, in the modern sense, pretending to have reporters at OMaha Beach, Paris, London, England, Mosocow, etc. It was pretty entertaining, but all I could think was “This isn’t what it would be like at all. If today’s press reported the actual events of D-Day, our liberals and Democrats would be suing Germany for peace on June 7th. I would be sitting here in lederhosen eating cold wurst as we speak.

The shrillness, the ngeativity, the willingness to distort reality into negative spin is just beyond me.

And Ezra- there are goingto be more terrorist attacks. More soldiers are going to die. More Iraqi’s are going to die. It will be a shame, but it will not be the end. And the ceremony you so desparately need- that can come on June 28th, 2005, on the first Anniversary of Iraqi Independence. As if you would have welcomed a ceremony on Wednesday anyway- you would have called it a fraud and a charade and a PR stunt, and found some other way to piss all over everybody who doesn’t share your jaded worldview.

No Kidding…

NY Times Letters to the Editor:

As an African-American and a recent Harvard graduate, I have found that my day-to-day life loan payments and choosing a job over a non-paying internship is shaped more by my socioeconomic profile (lower middle class) than by my racial one.

A rise in the number of students who represent the economically disadvantaged would automatically result in more slave-descendant African-Americans on campuses, while not ignoring those from other races and cultures who would profit from a prestigious college degree just as much.

New York, June 24, 2004

More Class From the ‘Civil’ Left

Really- We’re Moderates!

And, Just for Fun, Bash Bush – Literally
If you’ve ever wanted to punch out a President, here’s your chance. For a small donation, attendees can “Give George What-For in ’04” by punching an inflatable likeness of President Bush. Don’t miss this unique opportunity to take politics into your own hands. Other games and kids’ stuff include politically-themed face painting and temporary tattoos, and you’ll want to warm up your pitching arm for the “Asses of Evil” dunking booth featuring volunteers masked to resemble “W,” Dick Cheney, & Co.

‘Moderate’ Democrats

Here is ‘moderate’ Democrat Matt Yglesias referring to the President as ‘the idiot son of an asshole.’

In the post just prior to that one, Matt responds to a charge/query that perhaps Cheney is a psychopath (really- the psychobabble is starting too):

I do say, though, that I find it rather heartening to see the veneer of civility stripped away from the administration. Civility is an excellent thing, but only if the people acting civilly do so because they want to govern in a genuinely cooperative spirit. Since Dick Cheney obviously doesn’t want to do so, he may as well curse.

These jackasses can’t even get their message to scan from one post to another. In fifteen minutes, Matt goes from questioning Cheney’s civility because he told a man to fuck off- a man who had called him a war profiteer and a liar- to calling President Bush ‘the idiot son of an asshole.’

At least all the pretenses are gone. The gloves are off.

Yeah, We Won!

Yes, Matt. Yes, Pandagon. Yes, Atrios.

Glenn was right. We did win this battle:

Over the next 60 days, more than 5,000 troops from the division engaged in the most sustained urban combat operation of the now 15-month occupation. In desert cities that once welcomed American troops, they battled a Shiite uprising that threatened to upset the June 30 transition to an Iraqi interim government. Their orders were stark: Smash the uprising, and capture or kill its leader, the radical cleric Moqtada Sadr.

Silk soon found himself in a swirl of continuous combat, the kind of close fighting that the military had expected, but mostly avoided, during the 2003 invasion. Pinned down while pushing across a narrow bridge to retake the city of Kut, he watched four soldiers in his 15-man platoon fall wounded. “It was insane the amount of fire we were taking,” he said later.

By the time the uprising was over, silenced in a cease-fire June 4, the U.S. military success appeared decisive. While 19 U.S. soldiers had been killed in combat and scores wounded, military officials estimate that 1,500 insurgents were killed. Sadr’s militiamen had been driven from positions many had died defending.

But like much of the occupation, the battle for the Shiite holy cities yielded a more ambiguous political outcome. Sadr remains at large; U.S.-sponsored polls show him to be one of Iraq’s most popular figures. Hundreds of his militiamen escaped, perhaps to fight another day.

The uprising was crushed, and while Sadr on the surface appears popular, the poll results we discussed last week show how shallow his support is in the country.

I have never met a group of people so wiling to grab defeat from the jaws of victory. But then again, I have never met a group of people willing to say or do anything to win an election. Maybe the title of Matt’s post was right- liberals are idiots.

More here.