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July 24, 2007

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Wagster

This is what in the polling biz is called an oulier. 19 in 20 times statistical error is within the margin of error, but one in 20 times it goes beyond that. Also, sometimes the order in which questions are asked can affect understanding. Before you believe that an entrenched trend has reversed, with no facts on the ground supporting it, I would wait until the result is confirmed by other polls.

RichatUF

Wagster-

Or a better baramoter is the leftist standby of sliming the military and the war effort. An inversely proportional relationship of the "facts on the ground" [ie the better the facts on the ground, the more active the slime machine gets going]

Jim Miller

That's a pretty big jump for it to be an outlier. (I prefer Bayesian to frequentist interpretations of statistics, especially outside true experiments.)

What is strange is that it appeared in all three groups, Republicans, independents, and Democrats. It is hard to figure out an explanation for all three to move together -- except, possibly, that the good news on the battlefield is beginning to leak through the "mainstream" media.

Jim Miller

That's a pretty big jump for it to be an outlier. (I prefer Bayesian to frequentist interpretations of statistics, especially outside true experiments.)

What is strange is that it appeared in all three groups, Republicans, independents, and Democrats. It is hard to figure out an explanation for all three to move together -- except, possibly, that the good news on the battlefield is beginning to leak through the "mainstream" media.

Jim Miller

That's a pretty big jump for it to be an outlier. (I prefer Bayesian to frequentist interpretations of statistics, especially outside true experiments.)

What is strange is that it appeared in all three groups, Republicans, independents, and Democrats. It is hard to figure out an explanation for all three to move together -- except, possibly, that the good news on the battlefield is beginning to leak through the "mainstream" media.

Ranger

But it nonetheless assumes continued American involvement to train soldiers, act as partners with Iraqi forces and fight terrorist groups in Iraq, American officials said.

Funny, but isn't that also Ms. Clinton's policy?

Is this a Pentagon push back to say that for all her bluster about plans for retreat, her policy and their plan are basically the same?

Or is it an NYT effort to support their candidate by pointing out that her plan and the Pentagon plan are the same?

MikeS

Facts are stubborn things. They aren't going to go away just because Dems or the liberal media wish they would.

As the successes of the Surge become more obvious the media is forced to cover them. And as people become more aware of the facts they can't deny that security in Iraq is (at least for now) moving in the right direction.


clarice

Let me suggest that reality is setting in--everytime people like Kerry say the predictions of a bloodbath in SE Asia if we pulled out were false, people remember those predictions were, in fact, true. Everytime people like Obama say we shouldn't stay to prevent genocide, America's better nature comes through.

Cecil Turner

Although these plans are supposed to be classified I infer from the "added emphasis" bit that this is an Administration leak; presumably it it part of their eerily effective effort to rally public support.

I think that's a fairly solid inference. This has to be the worst-kept secret around, since it leaked in comparable detail before it was even signed (from the WaPo in May):

The plan has three pillars to be carried out simultaneously -- in contrast to the prior sequential strategy of "clear, hold and build." One shifts the immediate emphasis of military operations away from transitioning to Iraqi security forces -- the primary focus under the former top U.S. commander, Gen. George W. Casey Jr. -- toward protecting Iraq's population in trouble areas, a central objective of the troop increase that President Bush announced in January.
In response, Dem representatives from the House Armed Services Committee opined:
Meehan continued, “I would also like to note my concern with the apparent leak that led to a Washington Post reporter being briefed on this material before Congress was. I am confident that the Department of Defense will examine this matter to determine how it could have happened and to prevent it from happening in the future.”
But no complaints about the NIE ("al Qaeda rebuilt") leakage. My secret decoder ring makes that: "anti-war leaks are fine . . . pro war leaks must stop." Not sure there's much new in the second Times story, other than the emphasis on the long-term troop requirements and the declining patience in Washington . . . and both of those play to the Times's anti-war bias. And I think the shift in public opinion noted in the first has more to do with reports of progress out of Iraq, and the relative effectiveness of Petraeus as a spokesman. For example, the recent interviews with Hugh Hewitt and NPR:
DP: Well, it’s probably too soon to say that, but we think that we have them off plan. Now having said that, they clearly retain and have demonstrated, tragically in recent, the past week or so, the ability to continue to carry out sensational attacks. They continue to demonstrate the ability to counterattack against our forces, and those of our coalition partners. But the detention, or the capture or killing of the number of leaders that we have taken out in recent months, and weeks, actually, and the progress in terms of just clearing areas of them…as you know, Anbar Province has really become quite relatively clear of al Qaeda.
Looks like a nascent attempt at IW . . . and long past due.

clarice

Yes, maybe Schumer can force the DoJ to appoint Fitz again to see who leaked this classified info..I blame Cheney myself.

maryerose

Who cares what Meehan has to say-isn't he leaving soon? The truth is a pesky thing for dems thet have to confront it every now and then. Interesting point from the debate last night. Not once was the word terror used throughout the 2 hours. UTube submissions were screened at CNN so my guess is they are in as much denial about the WOT as the dems. Conventional wisdom without the spin- Obama looked good and alas Hillary did not.

cathyf
“I would also like to note my concern with the apparent leak that led to a Washington Post reporter being briefed on this material before Congress was. I am confident that the Department of Defense will examine this matter to determine how it could have happened and to prevent it from happening in the future.”
So, was it really classified? I'd just be tickled pink if Meehan's implied accusation were in fact precisely correct -- that the Administration declassified the docs and turned them over to various journalists before bothering to give them to Congress. It seems to me that this is partly what was going on with the July 2003 NIE declassification. Sure, some of it was that the CIA was being insubordinate, and so Bush & Cheney did themselves the order which the CIA was insubordinately refusing to carry out. But another part of it was about manipulating the press with a "please don't throw me into the briar patch" move. If journalists believe that the material is being leaked to harm the Administration, then they will feature it; if they figure out that the Administration is releasing the information to justify their positions and decisions, then the journalists will hide it.
MikeS

First lets soundly defeat al Qaeda in Iraq and declare victory before Nov. 2008

Then we can enter the pacification phase and draw down to the 2009 levels.

maryerose

My sense is that a year from now we will be looking at a radically different picture on Iraq and on the presidential race of 08. I still go against conventional wisdom in stating that Hil will not get the nomination. If she does the dems will lose in the general because Hil voted against funding the troops and that ad for repubs and against her will run 24/7.

Cecil Turner

Speaking of leaks, Powerline has a great piece up about Rowan Scarborough's new book, Sabotage, wherein he recaps some of the leaks, but misses an opportunity to take a swipe at Crazy Larry and the VIPS bubbas. The Amazon review is even more to-the-point:

Using his first-rate sources in all levels of national security--from field officers to high-ranking analysts to former intelligence heads--Scarborough paints a disturbing picture of partisan politics endangering the success of our campaigns abroad and the very lives of our soldiers and agents. [emphasis added]
Hmmm, ya think? Apparently the CIA is irritated at the coverage . . . but not so much that it's actually going to try to fix the problem.

RichatUF

A quick look at the poll:

Oversampled people that didn't vote in 2004 (27%)

Undersampled older votes (64 and over 16%)

Oversampled evangical Christian (24%)

Interesting question for #10 (remove and stay, remove and leave 62%) So using this poll, even after everything that has happened since, 62% of the sample says removing Hussein was the right call.

Question #24 is also interesting: confidence of gov't to handle future terrorist attacks (great deal+fair amount 66%)


RichatUF

evangical...evangelical

PeterUK

Quite frankly Obama is not fit to be president,if you invade a country and upset the status quo it is morally abhorent to wash your hands of it,walking away letting that country descend into chaos and genocide.

Neo

The increasingly popular Iraq war

Tom Bowler

If she does the dems will lose in the general because Hil voted against funding the troops and that ad for repubs and against her will run 24/7.

It's hard for me to imagine any Democrat with a snowball's chance in hell of winning the '08 election if developments in Iraq continue to improve as they have been. Maybe the Democrats and their allies in the press can pull off another '06 campaign.

Then, the Washington Post had a series of tell-all book promotions - Fiasco, State of Denial, CIA books - all in the runup to the election, all describing how disastrously things were going. What the Democrats also had going for them was a terrorist audience in Iraq that went on a murderous rampage that served to reinforce the message of doom and disaster.

The big problem with that approach is going to be a dearth of terrorists in Iraq to match their story-line with car bombs and IEDs. I believe the Democrats know this.

They are already adopting Edwards' story line, that there is no war on terror. There was never any war on terror. It's all just a bad dream that would never have happened if it weren't for George Bush.

Carol Herman

Sorry, the Bonkey campaign against our military NEVER took off! What we saw, was similar to the BS you saw on election night, 2004.

Remember? Kerry didn't concede, either. He was so sure the Bonkeys could steal Milwaukee; he forgot the Hugh Hewitt "rule." People, when they vote in high enough numbers, can have elections stolen from them!

Now, I was an adult back in the 1960's. I remember "then," and, I can assure you you're not seeing anything like the take down of Nixon; or the spitting on soldiers that went on, when Americans DEMANDED we leave Vietnam. John Kerry's career was birthed in that environment. He didn't get far in 2004, however. Even on his wife's money.

It's also worth remembering that Armitage threw a tantrum is Robert Woodward's office. Because Bob TAPED IT! (How "Nixonian!") But, Armitage couldn't force Woodward "to do it, again. And, take out another president."

The second time around it plays as farce.

That the elites in the media are losing customers? Yup. Every day.

It seems the biggest benefit from the Internet happens to individuals. Who no longer get their news from the press; but come and look at comments. And, comment, too.

It gives you the cross section you need.

One way to check on the veracity of the MSM? As I said. During Vietnam soldiers refused to wear their uniforms in public. Because too many social idiots spit on them! Today? Our soldiers are in uniform; and if anything happens, it's usually average citizens "applauding." Or saying, thanks.

Not that you forced to believe anything.

Again, the best way to test things; to know you're not getting a snow job, is to look around and see what if other people in the theater are laughing. Or not.

Ya know. There was a newspaper strike in New York City, just when Neil Simon's new play opened on Broadway. HE WAS TERRIFIED! So, he stood outside the theater and handed out free tickets to passersby. Did this tactic work? Does the name Niel Simon ring a bell?

He made it on Broadway during one of New York City's debilitating newspaper strikes. Today? Bet it wouldn't make a dent in how humans gather the information they want and need.

Yippee for the Internet!

Oh, and Bush is no longer in a slide. That "honor" goes to the Ma & Pa Kettle Show.

rogera

Agree wholeheartedly with Cecil's analysis (first post). As the truth continues to seep thru the MSM blockage, I think we will see a two-pronged MSM meme: (1) increasing violence/failure coupled with (2) leaks of plans and "advice" talking about a long term presence in Iraq. Speaking of the staying power of MSM memes: has anyone seen much about the "civil war" in Iraq lately? that one ran its course, I think. And how about that dread Taliban spring counter-offensive in Afghanistan? The only person taking the long view at this point is the President.

Carol Herman

RogerA, there was a real dirth of information in europe, during WW2. People over-rode the propaganda by having buried short wave radios; that they'd take out, to capture news that came from outposts far away. And, then? Even in germany, where tha nazis thought they had "control" ... the information got spread word-of-mouth.

And, BEFORE Patton crossed the Rhine, the germans were removing nazi insignias from their clothes. You'd be surprised what got buried. While at the same time, hitler kept a lid on the "bad news." Till he entered his bunker; and then swallowed a bullet.

I'm always amazed when people think propaganda works. Because it doesn't even work in America's classrooms. The kids most exposed to the garbage taught today are on the front lines of regurgitating this stuff for grades. And, then putting it behind them. Heck, even though this makes an important part of "audience share" the young kids, in America, are nowhere to be found by the MSM.

Will there ever be an accurate portrayal of what was attempted, here?

The threats still remain. Just like Milwaukee had "over-voting" in black districts, to "compensate" for republican voters in other areas of Wisconsin; this theft is still possible. The FBI has been deaf, dumb and blind.

And, the in-fighting in DC is probably worse than the gang-fighting in LA. Which is saying something to the violence now attempted against our freedoms.

Let alone the unraveling story at the New Republic. Stonewalling, instead of coming clean on the crap they published as "truth."

Me? Ya know, if you've ever owned a lemon of a car; even after it's been fixed. You don't forget the experience. And, it doesn't make you anxious, EVER, to buy the same maker's car(s), again. That's just a fact of life.

My mom, who spent a lifetime in retail, used to say that if you lose a customer; no matter what you did to try and get them back; you were looking at lost sales that you'd never, again, recover. (Tip. Treat the paying customers with respect. Make them feel welcome in your establishment. And, it goes a long way in attracting customers, back.)

jcox31mc

President Bush gave a great speech today outlining al Qaeda in Iraq. He did an excellent job and referred frequently to those that don’t believe that al Queda is a threat (you could almost hear the names of Harry Reid, Pelosi, etc.). I believe that most Americans, if they could just listen to this speech, would definitely support the effort in Iraq.

People are not dumb. When it is explained to them in detail they will see how phony the democrats are being and realize that the dems are messing with our lives. I hate it any time that I hear of another US death in Iraq and I have to keep reminding myself of history and what we are facing. By any measurement as compared to the dems positions, we should have quit in WWII many times. With approximately ½ of the population in the US then, many times we lost nearly as many men in one day than we have lost in nearly six years in the War on Terrorism. They can argue any way they want, but when we have the next big terrorist attack in this country, what will your Harry Reid’s have to say. The man is a disgrace every time he opens his mouth and knowing about his phony land deals and that he has sons and a son in law on the take as lobbyist just makes me sick and everything ten times worse.

Al Qaeda has been showing signs of deperation in Iraq and by our keeping them tied down there, it makes this country much, much safer. I believe that the dems, Hillary and others are digging themselves a hole, and they just keep digging. I have faith that as the surge develops in Iraq and the good information finally gets out to the public, the wisdom of the American people will prevail, and the dems will be put in their place. Their phoniness is being just too obvious and the elections will show us their true colors just like it did with Kerry.

EH

Isn't it interesting how much more believable polls are when they reinforce your beliefs.

rogera

EH--very true and totally consistent with human nature. With respect to the future of polling data, given the proliferation of cell phones and do not call lists, telephone based polls are going to become increasingly useless, I suspect.

Neo

Of course, there was some blowback for Sen. Reid's sleepover. The public doesn't like stunts.

Speaking of stunts, Sheehan on Monday was taken into custody inside Rep. John Conyers' office. I wonder how the police could identify the sane party.

MayBee

I haven't been polled recently, but my parents were polled a few weeks ago. They said they stayed on only out of curiousity, and were kept on for about 20 minutes. They finally hung up when they were asked "Would you rather your child be given a school assignment of reading The Bible or The Secret?"
They didn't know what The Secret was, but bypassing the question or responding "I don't know" wasn't an option. No longer amused, they ended the call.

How good can polling data be when they are relying on people willing to suffer such abuse?

TerryeL

I agree with Cecil on this.

I also think people like Allahpundit should remember that while Baker/Hamilton is not the plan Bush prefers and many of us endorse...it does not call for an immediate withdrawal for troops either.

And people like Mitch McConnell are not showing any indication of cutting funding. Even Lugar would not vote with the Democrats when a choice had to be made.

Barney Frank

Nothing succeeds like success. Linebacker I and II were quite popular late in the supposedly horrendously unpopular Viet Nam war.
If we're perceived as winning, the Dems will have sawn off their own limb, which of course is why they are attempting to scuttle the "surge". And if we're perceived as winning not only will the American public get back on board, even some of the Europeans will start hedging their bets.
If it all goes south or is perceived as having done so before Nov 08 then batten down the hatches, because the related axiom is nothing fails like failure.

Terry Gain

I'm delighted to see that more and more people accept that the Surge is working. Roggio and this site will keep you apprised of developments.

http://www.mnf-iraq.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=category&sectionid=1&id=4&Itemid=21

Garth

Two thirds of America still want withdrawl to happen now.

There is no progress in Iraq. There is no victory to be won. It is in a civil war. Shia dominated Iran wins. Sunni dominated instability and terror win.

It's time to end this police action.


"It's hard for me to imagine any Democrat with a snowball's chance in hell of winning the '08 election if developments in Iraq continue to improve as they have been."

It's hard for me to imagine a dumber statement. There is no victory for the US lurking in the violence of Iraq because no self-respecting Iraqi can simultaneously come to power and give away all of Iraq's oil wealth to the US.

Bear in mind that everything Herr Busch has touched has to turned to sh@t and the last thing he will have his mongloid fingers on is the neck of the republican party.

maryerose

Rahm Emanuel talked today about civil war in Iraq but everyone knows he is repeating dem and Chairman dean's talking points.
Matthews has started to ask every guest how much longer in Iraq. It is like listening to a child ask "Are we there yet?"

paul

I offer a question from

http://pollingreport.com/iraq2.htm

Gallup:
"Which comes closer to your view about the war in Iraq? You think the U.S. will definitely win the war in Iraq. You think the U.S. will probably win the war in Iraq. You think the U.S. can win the war in Iraq, but you don't think it will win. OR, You do not think the U.S. can win the war in Iraq."

In March 07, the number who believed 'we could not win' was 46%.
In April 07, Harry tells us the war is lost.
In June 07, the number of people who believed 'we could not win' was 41%.

Even stranger is the number of people who believe 'we can win, but won't'. 24% of all respondents, but still providing for the number who believe 'Iraq can be won' at 54-41, in June 07.

maryerose

Garth:
Your lack of knowledge and sense of history is showing. We have AlQueda in Iraq on the run. They thought we would be long gone by now.They obviously underestimated President Bush.Dems also thought the President would draw down the troops to win 06 elections but he doesn't let partisan politics get in the way of what is best and safest for America. Right now dems sre underestimating the overall appeal of the republican candidates. They do this at their own risk. Hil is in denial about her negatives-they are HUGE and I haven't even been polled yet nor has my family. She is in for a big surprise as the primaries roll around.We don' want a repeat of the Dumb-Bill-Lewinsky
and Hil- right wing conspiracy -I didn't know about Monica Dumber Show.
Sincerely Wayne

clarice

Some interesting speculation on the identity of TNR's Scott THomas and some equally interesting background on the mag's youthful editor, Foer.
http://www.amazon.com/gp/blog/post/PLNK1A3L4YEO74C19
h/t instapundit

Garth

Our alliance with the Sunni's in Anbar are indicative of Al Queda in Iraq in that the Iraqi's themselves don't want them.

They don't want us either, but that doesn't appear to have registered with you yet.

Nor does the Shia dominated Iraqi Government appear to appreciate our alliance with Sunni Iraqi's despite the fact they are executing suspected Al Queda members on the spot.

In fact, Shia dominated Iraq appears to wish us to leave so that they can consolidate their relationship with Iran and finally get around to some serious cleansing of Sunni's, Kurds and any other foreign fighters that may threaten their grip on power.

Repeat after me. Iraq was not a haven for Al Queda before we invaded. It does not want to be a haven for Al Queda if we leave. I fail to see where my grasp of history is wrong here.

Garth

Wayne,

Al Queda does not have a standing army. I think we can agree on that.

They love the fact that we are in Iraq because it allows them to train against US troops.

Al Queda's operational ability has been strengthened by our presence in Iraq. They are able to solicit funds and recruit based on the very obvious fact that Herr Busch is putting American troops on foreign soil.

Americans are dying and paying for Al Queda troop training exercises.

Polls today show Hillary trouncing any of the current republican candidates in a national election.

There is going to be alot crying on this site over the next 16 years of Democratic Presidents.

section9

Someone once wrote, and I forgot where, that each political party is making a twenty-year bet. The Democrats, as they did in 1972, are betting that the United States Army will lose. They will do anything, anything, to make sure that that bet comes throught.


I strongly suspect that the Army and Marines will not cooperate.


A year from now, the meme may be, "where were the Democrats when Petraeus needed their support". The Democrats are doing the hideously stupid thing, following the steady state theory of politics-that today's political conditions will exist in November of 2008. But politics is affected by what the wise statesman called "events dear boy, events...".


Al Qaeda is being annihilated as we speak. The Democrats did not plan for this. They did not plan for the possible success of the Surge.


They did not believe that Bush would find his Grant in Petraeus. They have bet on the defeat of the United States Armed Forces in combat against Al Qaeda, and it will haunt the Democratic Party for the next generation.


Giuliani will defeat Clinton in the election next year because of this bad bet. Remember George Patton: "Americans love a winner, and will not tolerate a loser. Americans play to win all the time; I wouldn't give a hoot in hell for a man who lost, and laughed."


To paraphrase Shakespeare, it is not that Democrats love America less; it is that they hate Bush more.

Sara

And this is good news about THE SURGE:

The surge has basically been chasing the terrorist and criminal gangs around the suburbs of Baghdad, or even into northern or western Iraq. This has taken its toll. Time spent in flight cannot be spent planting IEDs or killing people. Putting all these guys on the road, also makes them more susceptible to capture. A lot of important terrorists have been captured this way. The chief liaison between al Qaeda headquarters and al Qaeda in Iraq was nabbed, as well as many mid-level terrorist cell leaders.

What most of the troops, and Iraqi civilians, notice is the lower level of violence. Since the surge offensive began four months ago, Iraqi (military and civilian) deaths have declined by more than 50 percent, and American casualties are down by over a third. U.S. troops are still taking the lead in moving into hostile areas, and being exposed to ambush and IEDs. But U.S. tactics and training have made enemy efforts much less lethal. This has helped demoralize an increasing number of terrorists. Many are tired of killing Iraqi civilians, and the increasing difficulty at getting at American troops. Look at this from the Iraqi perspective. In a very good month, Iraqis make a hundred or more attacks a day on American troops, and kill, on average, about four of them. While the terrorists make a big deal out of every American killed, they know that most of their attacks were not only failures, but got a lot of their buddies killed. On average, 10-20 terrorists die for every American killed. This has been going on for years, and an increasing number of Iraqi fighters are demoralized and quitting. Many either become informers, or surrender and speak freely. This is resulting in fresher intelligence, and raids that are catching terrorist cells preparing for operations, and in possession of weapons, bombs and incriminating documents.

Sara

Via AJ Strata, some amazing poll numbers:

Here is the poll which is now out on the streets:

For example, the percentage of Jordanian Muslims who have confidence in bin Laden as a world leader fell 36 percentage points to 20 percent since 2003 while the proportion who say suicide bombing is sometimes or always justified dropped 20 percent points to 23 percent. Other countries where support for bin Laden declined are Lebanon, Indonesia, Turkey, Pakistan and Kuwait.

The report said support for such bombings and terror tactics has dropped since 2002 in seven of the eight countries where data were available. In Lebanon, the proportion of Muslims who say suicide attacks are often or sometimes justified fell to 34 percent from 79 percent while just 9 percent of Pakistanis believe suicide bombings can be justified often or sometimes, down from 33 percent in 2002 and a high of 41 percent in 2004.

This is a stunning reversal in support of al-Qaeda’s currently preferred tactics. And there is no doubt this is causing a major PR problem for Islamo Fascist movements like al-Qaeda, clearly one of the world’s best known “Sunni Extremist” organizations:

Eighty-eight percent of Lebanese and 73 percent of Kuwaitis—along with smaller majorities or pluralities of Muslims elsewhere in the Middle East—said Sunni-Shiite tensions represent a growing problem for the Muslim world, the report said.

The Arab/Muslim street is waking up and rising up. And it is NOT aligning with al-Qaeda and their ruthless bloodlust.

section9

Garth, you have a right to your opinions, but not your own set of facts. Gallup out today shows Rudy beating both Hillary and Obama.

Were you to actually read Michael Totten, Michael Yon, or a news source other than the MSM you would have found that Qaeda is being hunted down in Iraq after having been turned on by the locals, who are sick to death of them.

Even the news media, which despises Bush as much as you do, now has to start reporting this. Otherwise, they wouldn't be reporting that Anbar, which used to be an Qaeda safe haven, has been pretty much cleared of Qaedist forces.

I know you can't stand the fact that your own army has scored successes in the last six months, but I just wanted to brighten your day. You too, have made a bad bet. Election Night will not be a happy experience for you.

Rick Ballard

Section9,

I'd say Sheridan rather than Grant or Sherman. It ain't an infantry hammer and anvil set up - the fluidity is cavalry all the way.

August will be very bloody - the Copperhead/Splodeydope alliance will make sure of it.

RichatUF

Garth-

Two thirds of America still want withdrawl to happen now.

TM provided a link to the poll: question #12,

Increase 12%
Keep same 15%
Decrease 30%
Remove all 36%
DK/NA 7%


EH-

Isn't it interesting how much more believable polls are when they reinforce your beliefs.

Sometimes polling can be useful, but driving policy by polls seems to reduce it to the trivial. I would say that I would like the numbers to substantially improve so the media would have to pout and spin it in some unbelievable direction.

In other news-what was up with Specter today. See here

Despite repeated questions, Gonzales refused to say whether he would allow a presidentially appointed prosecutor to investigate White House aides who Bush has said are covered by executive privilege and therefore exempt from talking.

That leaves open the door for presidents to shut down the checks-and-balances of congressional oversight, Specter said.

So Specter, not getting anywhere with the "oversight" role in committee wants to move to the next step-a "special prosecutor". What the hell-did the AG fire one of Specter's pet rocks?

clarice

Well, unless congress reauthorizes the independent prosecutor law they let lapse , they seem to have run this to the end of tis course.

Syl

I'm having some eye trouble so can't read as much as I used to.

I just want to insert a little tidbit re one of the reasons I think some attitudes against the surge may be softening...

Michael Ware on CNN

(His recent reports even seem to have visibly shocked those on CNN listening to him.)

We know he has been in Baghdad for at least four years and has been exposed to atrocities and people we hope never to be exposed to in our lives. His reporting has been quite negative about the carnage and the hopelessness of fighting these horrors.

But what nobody realized is that he has been insulated from the political goings on in D.C. and the rhetoric flying around inside America.

I'll just mention two of the recent reports I've seen from him that illustrate this. One was about allowing the surge to run its course. He said we can't possibly judge the effectiveness of the surge because it's barely begun.

The other, today, concerned al Qaeda's role in Iraq. After Bush's speech today, CNN International said Bush claimed al Qaeda was behind 80% of the car bombings in Iraq and asked Ware if that were true--obviously expecting Ware to say no, Bush is spinning.

Ware to the contrary seemed confused. He said of course al Qaeda is responsible and everybody in Iraq knows that. Why is this even a question. He also said he has missed any political debate in America and wondered why Bush is bringing up this fact now.

Why, indeed.

He also spoke of how al Qaeda tried to put an Iraqi face on its activities, but the Iraqis are on to them now.

Anyway, at least CNN is surprised. Sheesh. A news organization that hasn't a clue what's going on. The Most Trusted Name in Democratic Politics.

Bush is fighting back, finally. And instead of dissing him for waiting so long we should give him our full support. Write your congresscritters and tell them you won't stand for capitulation to the Democrats on this issue. The Left is writing furiously, the right must do so as well.

I sense a holding back on the right. A confusion about where to stand. Well, Bush has spoken and given the facts so the confusion should be over now. We can win this thing.

The conditions on the ground last fall were horendous and civil war was blooming.

But Bush CHANGED COURSE and is hitting the enemy directly and simultaneously in several areas. When we clean up one area, we ARE NOT LEAVING and moving elsewhere.

What the Democrats want is to go back to the OLD COURSE. The one that failed.

SunnyDay

I saw the first half of the hearing - the Republicans seem to either be siding with the Dems or staying out of it. Sessions did not come across as sympathetic - asked some questions about the issue being investigated, then changed the subject and asked about illegal aliens. Most Reps did that - asked about unrelated issues. They were not giving him "bail out" questions or a way to go into further explanation where he had been cut off by the Dems.

Dems deliberately asked him questions they knew he could not answer - things Bush or someone else would have to answer. They pounded on these as if he were being recalcitrant, acting like they thought he should make committments for others, or say what someone else should do.

They tried to twist things he had said in other hearings. When it came to the hospital visit incident, he directly contradicted the Comey depiction. He said they went to the hospital at the urging of senators and representaives that were involved at the time, and were concerned that the program would be stopped, wanted it to continue as things were worked out.

It was exactly opposite of what was portrayed by Comey. The Senators implied that G. was lying. If there is a transcript or they put the hearing in the archives, you will see this.

Senators implied that someone (G. in their minds) lied under oath. G referred back to comments to the press. They were trying to make his comments to the press, which were in error, were sworn testimony.

I believe, IIRC, the same situation exists with Comey's comments. He did not describe the hospital visit under oath, he gave it to a reporter.

So in effect, the Senators are conflating comments to the press with sworn testimoney and caliming they need a Special Prosecutor. They kept asking G. would he appoint one, G. said he has recused himself from any investigation. They wanted to know who would sppoint a SP then, he said the deputy AG. They said "the acting deputy?" he said no, the deputy - McNulty.

But you know thw poop has hit the fan, and the resignations from DOJ are because the jig is up and some people's bluffs have been called.

I do believe they're going to press for a SP. They are furious.

Somebody's got some deals going or something under the table to get the Republican Senators to back out of this the way they have.

I think we should all pound on their heads and demand an explanation. Specter and Sessions actively went after G. the rest avoided the subject. They cannot possibly believe all this crap. Something else is involved.

The judiciary committe has it's own website, each member's name links to his official site, which has contact info.

Sorry I haven't finished the web page of contact resources and hearing info. My tech people are installing a major software upgrade, and I've been tied up with that since Sunday. arrrrrrrrrrgh.


MayBee

Thanks for the great updates, Syl and SunnyDay. Sorry about your eyes, Miss Syl.
SunnyDay, I guess I'm not all that surprised by the actions of Republican Senators on the committee. This is a inter-Branch power struggle, and Congress members of both parties will fight to maintain Congressional power rather than cede power to the Executive.

It's like when Hastert threw a constitutional fit when the the executive and judicial branches issued a warrant for and performed a search on Jefferson's office. Nobody ever wants to give up their own power.

A SP for this would be a travesty. Seriously, why Gonzales went to the hospital to talk to Ashcroft is none of Congress's damn business.

MayBee

Although....
There is something so deliciously ironic about Senators appointing a Prosecutor to investigate whether the Executive branch was political in the way it appointed its prosecutors.

I hear Iglesias is available.

Tom Bowler

Thanks to everyone for sticking a fork into Garth while I was away.

And Syl's right:

Bush is fighting back, finally. And instead of dissing him for waiting so long we should give him our full support. Write your congresscritters and tell them you won't stand for capitulation to the Democrats on this issue. The Left is writing furiously, the right must do so as well.

Write to them.

Poppy

Anyone folowing the TNR mess with the fake troop stories?

I think this is interesting in he shock troops article.

In every instance, the author (Scott Thomas) describes all the other soldiers as laughing:

1. '''You're crazy, man!" my friend said, doubling over with laughter'''

2. ''''people dropped shovels and sandbags, folding in half with laughter.'''''

3. '''''A roar of laughter broke out over the radio'''''

4. '''''I didn't see the third kill, but I heard about it over the radio. Everyone was laughing, nearly rolling with laughter''''''''

5. ''''It's like hunting in Iraq!" he said, shaking with laughter.''''

Apparently Army guys spend alot of time bending and rolling with laughter
even all together on radios. It must be an amazing sight to behold.

Whoever this guy is, he isn't very bright and needs to make up better stories, I said, doubled over with laughter.

And the comment that the women NEARLY knock her tray to the floor is more literary nonsense. He is describing a non-event (Nearly) as a dramatic flare.

Sad that Foer couldn't see through this BS.

PeterUK

Family of fallen US soldier adopts Iraq puppy.I bet these people were rolling with laughter as well.

PeterUK

Foer didn't want to see through the story even with its glaring contradiction,too much detail and not enough detail.
Detail about the woman's injuries,how did they know it was caused by an IED,description of uniform but not knowing what it was.Military people live and die by a knowledge of uniforms,in organisations where disrespecting rank rank can have serious consequences,members of those organisations are keenly aware of uniforms.New faces always arouse interest in enclosed communities.
The story sound more like an AQ/Iranian disinformation exercise,ready made for the liberal media.

PeterUK

Foer didn't want to see through the story even with its glaring contradiction,too much detail and not enough detail.
Detail about the woman's injuries,how did they know it was caused by an IED,description of uniform but not knowing what it was.Military people live and die by a knowledge of uniforms,in organisations where disrespecting rank rank can have serious consequences,members of those organisations are keenly aware of uniforms.New faces always arouse interest in enclosed communities.
The story sound more like an AQ/Iranian disinformation exercise,ready made for the liberal media.

PeterUK

Foer didn't want to see through the story even with its glaring contradiction,too much detail and not enough detail.
Detail about the woman's injuries,how did they know it was caused by an IED,description of uniform but not knowing what it was.Military people live and die by a knowledge of uniforms,in organisations where disrespecting rank rank can have serious consequences,members of those organisations are keenly aware of uniforms.New faces always arouse interest in enclosed communities.
The story sound more like an AQ/Iranian disinformation exercise,ready made for the liberal media.

PeterUK

Typepad has a serious problem,I entered one code only.It doesn't return to the comment page but keeps running through captcha pages.Who do I complain to?????

clarice

Nice to see you again, Syl.

Ann

PeterUK

Thanks for the story about the fallen soldier and the puppy.
Everytime I read about our incredible soldiers and their families I get mad all over again at our media and the Democrats.

MSNBC didn't even play the president's speech yesterday. How do you explain such hatred ?

hit and run

Who do I complain to?????


I'm listening.

SunnyDay

A SP for this would be a travesty. Seriously, why Gonzales went to the hospital to talk to Ashcroft is none of Congress's damn business.

Posted by: MayBee | July 25, 2007 at 04:10 AM
*************************************

This was towards the end of the AM session, I didn't watch the PM session, but there didn't seems to be much of an endorsement of SP idea by the Reps on the committee. I believe the Dems are going to try to put the pressure on, though. They set it up just right, if they have their guy in the right position.

I was just surprised, after seeing the House Reps fight back for G. - this was disappointing.

Sara

Michael Totten's latest from Iraq:

We slowly rolled into the market area. Smiling children ran up to and alongside the convoy and excitedly waved hello. It felt like I was riding with a liberating army.

Graya’at’s streets are quiet and safe. It doesn’t look or feel like war zone at all. American soldiers just a few miles away are still engaged in almost daily firefights with insurgents and terrorists, but this part of the city has been cleared by the surge.

Before the surge started the neighborhood was much more dangerous than it is now.

“We were on base at Camp Taji [north of the city] and commuting to work,” Major Jazdyk told me earlier. “The problem with that was that the only space we dominated was inside our Humvees. So we moved into the neighborhoods and live there now with the locals. We know them and they know us.”

Lieutenant Lawrence Pitts from Fayetteville, North Carolina, elaborated. “We patrol the streets of this neighborhood 24/7,” he said. “We knock on doors, ask people what they need help with. We really do what we can to help them out. We let them know that we’re here to work with them to make their city safe in the hopes that they’ll give us the intel we need on the bad guys. And it worked.”

Sara

Via Gateway Pundit:

The former Baathists of Saddam's regime met briefly in Damascus, Syria yesterday before the Assad Regime called off the event. They were able though to discuss their plans for Iraq once democrats force US troops to withdraw from the region.

TIME magazine reported:

Once the majority of American troops have left, the alliance plans to throw out the constitution, dissolve the parliament, cancel all resolutions issued from the Bremer era on, and disband the existing security forces and U.S.-trained Iraqi army divisions.

The U.S. embassy in Baghdad, they said, would have to close — "as in Saigon. With helicopters on the roof" said Samarai — until Washington recognized a new, resistance-led Iraqi governing council, and offered compensation to all individuals and organizations affected by the war. Under the new leadership, all Iraqi citizens who worked for or cooperated with the current, coalition-backed government would be arrested. A "reconciliation council", drawn in large part from the ranks of the armed insurgency, would then draw up plans for a permanent "technocratic" government which would immediately seek criminal charges and file civil suits against the U.S. government and major American war supporters in international court.

cathyf
Typepad has a serious problem,I entered one code only.It doesn't return to the comment page but keeps running through captcha pages.
As soon as you get a suspicious captcha, use your back button to go back to the preview page. Hit Preview (not post), and then scroll down to the bottom and see if your posting is there. If yes, abandon the post. If no, hit Post and then continue. Oh, and you might want to triple-click in the posting box and hit the copy command and paste it into a text editor box somewhere in case it gets lost...
HoosierHoops

Well, if i recall Other Tom is in Italy this week..that's a bummer..
I told OT that when I visit San Diego we'd have to get together. We leave friday for the fair state of California to spend a few last days with our marine son prior to his departure for Iraq for a year.
So OT, I'll be blogging this weekend in your hometown and if you are back please join us this weekend as we sail the bay and points beyond. ( we rented a 38' Catelina 387 )...If not this time, We always sail in oct.
*********************************
Now Garth..Concerning your prior comments..
Here are my thoughts..
The Democratic party is so sure they are going to win the white house that it is so obvious they are making stupid mistakes..
What they fail to see is that Hillary is deeply unpopular in America.. In my lifetime I have NEVER seen anyone elected that lacked popularity amoungst the masses..
If the GOP runs Rudy or Fred against her it will be a bitter defeat for the dems..
The polls mean absolutely nothing, I've been calling elections since '72 and have never been wrong..I could tell carter would win, I could feel Clinton rolling in 92. Reagan was an easy call...the Bush/Gore thing was wacky, but i called that 6 weeks prior that bush would win.
Instead of listening to CNN, Just call me.. ( I'm joking of course )
I believe that although the Iraq was is deeply unpopular ( esp. in my house ) it takes more than that to elect a dem. hell Nixon got elected during the most unpopular war in history.. All he had to say was 'I have a plan' You seriously can't believe Rudy, Fred or Mitt won't say, ' Yes, we need to win or get out..I have a plan for Iraq' Garth, Do you think america is going to hand the reins over to Hillary simply because of Iraq? It's not going to happen because she carries a certain amount of hate towards her and deep unpopular feelings she cannot overcome..Bill Clinton will never see the inside of the White House again unless he takes the tour..
Leno and letterman won't even start the jokes till 08.. and it will be brutal. ( and very funny )

hit and run

BTW, where's Charlie?

Ward Churchill fired

BOULDER — The first, very long chapter of the Ward Churchill saga ended this afternoon as just about everybody — including Churchill — had predicted: He was fired from his job as ethnic studies professor at the University of Colorado.

The next chapter is set to begin Wednesday, when the controversial academic and his civil rights attorney, David Lane, sue the university in Denver District Court.

PeterUK

cathyF,
Ity's the back button that keeps making the duplicates.Often I can't get off the thread to go to another without Captcha demanding another code,the thing is insatiable.

cathyf

Aha! I think I see your problem! (The punch line for an engineer joke, but I digress...) You need to right-click on the back button, so that a whole list of where you have been shows up. Back up two windows instead of one... The problem with only backing up one, is that if it is the post window it will throw you forward, so that backing up one again won't get you anywhere. Gotta back up at least 2...

cathyf

On the subject of Chutch -- anyone want to start a betting pool as to how long it will take him to find another academic job? My hubby thinks that it will be a matter of a few months, maybe to start Fall 2008, but not later than that.

maryerose

Ann:
MSNBC was too busy having one of their 08 campaign days to bother covering President Bush and what is happening in real life right now. They prefer to inhabit a fantasy world where dems win everything and the Iraq war and the fight against terrorism just goes away. The president has declassified intelligence showing connections between Alqueda and 9/11 but Reid says it's not true. Supposedly Reid knows better. Ridiculous! His comment "We are going to pick up Senate seats from this" tells you where his head is at.

maryerose

cathyf;
Harvard or Princeton would be happy to have Churchie in their ranks.

MikeS

Fighting against al-Qaeda is still popular in the U.S. The Dems are trying to convince the public, that al-Qaeda in Iraq is not really al-Qaeda at all. They claim that al-Qaeda in Iraq is a type of Sunni Bathist insurgency created by the invasion of Iraq.

The weakness of that argument is underscored by the NIE. It says that al-Qaeda in Pakistan has tasked al-Qaeda in Iraq with planning and executing attacks against the U.S. homeland. Which presumably the will do when they can work it into their schedule.

PeterUK

CathyF,Thanks,that works though,the old method worked when there was registration..nearly always have to enter two captcha codes though.

danking70

So Iraqi insurgents are having a open meeting in Syria and Time gets an exclusive.

Wonder if the CIA got an invite? Probably lost theirs...

kim

Right, MikeS, from their lofty perches, the eagles command the alligators.
==============================

PeterUK

A fine figure of a man like this is bound to get a job in academic hippiedom.

PeterUK

Ann,
If you think about the amount of money we in the West spend on pet food and veterinary bills the story about the dog killer doesn't fly. Such a creature wouldn't last long with animal lovers.

Sara

OT - A few days ago in another thread, we were talking about the luxury tax and how futile it is. I came across this little blurb this morning that I think is quite informative and makes the point I was making the other day:

Via Say Anything:

David Hogberg has an article in Wall Street Journal’s Opinion Journal about luxury taxes, specifically the luxury tax Democrats are trying to levy against cigars to fund (it’s for the children!) a massive expansion of the SCHIP program.

Hogberg points out that luxury taxes rarely result in the sort of revenue politicians expect. As an example:

And if members of Congress never considered that the luxury tax would discourage rich people from buying luxury items in the U.S., then they surely never considered that such an effect might not be so good for the Joe Six-Packs who worked in the industries producing luxury items. A Joint Economic Committee study later found that 330 jobs in the jewelry industry and 7,600 jobs in the yacht industry were lost thanks to the luxury tax. Perhaps the greatest irony was that in 1991 the federal government paid out over $7 million more in unemployment benefits to those workers than it collected in luxury tax revenues.
hit and run

Why do Rockets hate Pakistanis?
"Rockets kill 10 in northwest Pakistan" -- headline, AP, July 25


Why do Car Bombs hate Iraqi soccer fans?
"Car bomb kills 10 Iraqis celebrating soccer win" -- headline, Reuters, July 25

PanderBot

I remember the luxury tax on yachts. At the time, it seemed like a precisely targeted excise tax. I also recall that the value of existing yachts rose, thus increasing the wealth of yacht owners, while sales of new yachts fell, thus leading to a loss of jobs by the workers who built or repaired yachts. In fact, as I recall, the efforts to repeal that luxury tax were lead by a Democrat Senator from Connecticut.

PeterUK

The "John Doe Amendment has been saved

hit and run

You kidding me?

Specter to probe Supreme Court decisions

Sen. Arlen Specter (R-Pa.) plans to review the Senate testimony of U.S. Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts and Justice Samuel A. Alito to determine if their reversal of several long-standing opinions conflicts with promises they made to senators to win confirmation.

Specter, who championed their confirmation, said Tuesday he will personally re-examine the testimony to see if their actions in court match what they told the Senate.

PeterUK

Lawmaker,US making significant progress in Iraq.

clarice

Mushroom soup can lid cuts Hit.

Arlen does seem to be off his rocker..otoh new nominees to the Ct are likely and let me guess here--Specter is launching a preemptive strike against those who are claiming Alito and Rogers misled the committee and so will any new nominee.

Just saying.

hit and run

I didn't negotiate with the lid, nor did I engage in diplomacy with it.

It has been utterly destroyed.

Now we see who is the strong horse.

I'd like to see another soup can come after me now.

The booboo still hurts a little, though.

Sara

I have watched a number of Supreme Court nominee hearings, and I've always been a bit mystified as to why a Senator like Spector expects ironclad assurances a nominee will or will not do certain things if confirmed. Don't we want our Justices to approach each case on its own merits first? How can anyone promise never to overrule precedent or to have a finding contrary to past rulings when we live in such a changing world. Spector seems the worst at this. I realize precedent is important for consistency, but c'mon, a law that has stood for 150 years, say on communications, can be almost comical in today's world of mass communications and the Internet, as just one example.

PeterUK

The world of inanimate objects 2 H&R 0.

clarice

I'm still worried that he has a chainsaw nearby, PUK.

Sara.Honestly, I think this is an artful ruse. Alito and Rogers did not lie to the Committee and I do think Specter's working with the WH on this.

hit and run

The world of inanimate objects 2 H&R 0.


Hey!

Typepad:4,921 PUK:0

Sara

Sara.Honestly, I think this is an artful ruse. Alito and Rogers did not lie to the Committee and I do think Specter's working with the WH on this.

Clarice, could you explain this a little more.

clarice

Neas who runs the "progressive" wars against Bush's judicial nominees has loaded up the dice for the next round by claiming none of them can be trusted, that Alito and Rogers misled the Committee and the Congress by pretending to be more moderate than they proved to be. I believe that there may well be another one or two nominees to the Ct before Bush leaves office and Specter is trying preemptively to establish that the Neas' theme is wrong.

**********
More suck your kids' brains out--this time with the feds and Saudis working together. I can only hope it has the same impact as "Reefer madness" did on my generation.

http://article.nationalreview.com/?q=YjRhZjYwMjU4MGY5ODJmM2MzNGNhNzljMzk4ZDFiYmQ>Wahhabis are your friends

PeterUK

Typepad isn't an inanimate object,it is a fiend incarnate with a deep hatred of the human race,but it has left me with all my protrusions.

hit and run

Headline: Obama models campaign on Reagan revolt

Two questions,

1) How do they hope to capitalize on the "Reagan revolt"?

2) What will they be wearing?

lurker9876

"I do think Specter's working with the WH on this."

Why would you think Specter's working with WH on this one?

clarice

I have my reasons which I can't divulge now.


Looks like we're boogeying down in Waziristan. The Indian press reports we've pinpointed the AQ training camps to 9 locations there and there have been helicopter attacks on all 9 spots today.

clarice

Seems like we need a wooden stake and some garlic--the Wilson/Plame duo is still blabbering on thru their counsel about the appeal of their civil suit.

http://www.insidebayarea.com/sanmateocountytimes/localnews/ci_6458402>Girding up their loins again

clarice

TNR's Foer keeps tap dancing..shuffle, slide, HIDE.


http://powerlineblog.com/archives/018336.php

Barney Frank

--the Wilson/Plame duo is still blabbering on thru their counsel about the appeal of their civil suit--

I do not believe either Joe or Valerie are appealing.

Jane

Chemerinsky really is an idiot.

PeterUK

The al Qaeda recycling program beloved of the Democrats,after all who is going to give them the vote catching atrocities,has reared its head again. This one seems to have blown himself up wit a grenade rather than have another lot of sympathetic liberals plead his case for him.

Sue

Oh, geeze, Clarice. I had to read a quote from Marcy Wheeler.

The comments to this entry are closed.

Wilson/Plame