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February 12, 2009



I am from the Ministry of Information, and we will tell you how to think.....


Didn't Zelikow conspire with Gorelick to warp the results of that inquiry?


I never trust anything with the word "truth" in it.


Rather than focus on the Bush administration, I would rather see truth commissions established for all future administrations.


If the three most prominent members were all Republicans, no one on the right could denounce it as a witch hunt — and its criticisms would have far more credibility.

WEll, except that point of the inquiry is to stage a witchhunt, right?


Couldn't be a witch hunt against Republicans if John McCain is involved. Throw in Colin Powell for the Republican military perspective, Chris Buckley for the Republican literary perspective, maybe some of the life-long Republicans who popped up all over the internet just before the election for the Republican man on the street perspective. Toss in scrupulous nonpartisans like the Man Who Would Be Obama's Ambassador to Iraq, and we're all set.

to investigate torture, secret detention and wiretapping during the Bush years, as well as to look ahead and offer recommendations for balancing national security and individual rights in the future.

Is there some valid reason it would go back no farther than the Bush years?


bgates- David Gergin weeps at your exclusion of him.


This is a classic Nixonian example with the UK Met Office Hadley Centre doing a "limited hangout".

Fresh Air

I love those loaded words "secret prisons," "wiretapping" and "torture." The secret prisons were a CIA ruse. The wiretapping was all authorized by the FISA court and any case involved known terrorist cellphone numbers on one end or the other. And the sum of torture during the Bush administration (aside from having to put up with Norman Mineta for eight years) was three cases of non-torture known as "waterboarding," a procedure that every U.S. pilot in S/E/R/E must endure.

But keep it up Mediacrat clowns, your hyperbole worked so well the last time. Even Andrew Sullivan fell for it. Okay, wait a minute...


Watts Up hopes it might be a tipping point in the climate debate, Neo. UK Met and the Guardian have been in the forefront of pushing the CO2=AGW paradigm. Link under name, if you please.

I actually emailed one of my children's teachers the Watts Up link. I had sent her a note months ago excusing my daughter from watching 'An Inconvenient Truth', and my daughter reports that the teacher read it and said 'Whatever' but excused her. Today, I got a reasonable cordial reply, promising to review my link.


Fine, let'em go through with this travesty again, let the wrong people be freed, the right people be prosecuted or hounded out
of their jobs. By all means, let more Americans die, seeing that I live in a East Coast city, that probably means a more than likely chance that I'll be one of them. America's desire for self immolation seems
nearly endless. I may stay away from the intertubes for a while, if this keeps up


You know, Kristoff's proposal sounds so reasonable and so moderate that I do feel a strong inclination to embrace it.

But I don't. Because there is a political expectation behind such a commission that may actually get in the way of finding the truth. Kristoff and most Democrats engaged with this issue know to a moral certainty that the Bush administration practiced torture and feel strongly that any commission engaged in the issue must find the same thing. If the gop worthies come together and find that nobody did anything much wrong, the partisan attack of shrill would be somthing to behold, and would, of course, damage the reputation of the GOP worthies who sat on the Commission.

Think the GOP worthies don't know that? My hope would b that they would refuse to serve on such a commission. But I am afraid that the group might find itself inclined (consciously or unconsciously) t deliver the expected result.

In any event, I really dislike the Independent Commission approach to the bad things the nation has done (or failed to do). These commissions are always biased in a way to come up with suggestions to "keep the bad stuff from happening again". Which means that, at the end of the day, all one gets is a thick report with useless and ignored recommndations, and a narrative that is subtly interpreted to support the recommendations.

I would make an alternative suggestion. Simply open up the relevent records to a group of independent historians, medical professionals, and lawyers, who have the simple task of "writing what happened". These will not be Washington people -- or even Ivy leaguers. We might even include some foreigners. These guys would have access to all the records, and all the people involved. (Who will nly get the blanket pardon they crave if they cooperate). All interviews will be done in private, but will be taped and uploaded to the internet.

The only deliverable will be a website, and a written history of what exactly happened. (And that report is to have NO EXECUTIVE SUMMARY)

The truth can set us free -- but the standard truth commission, 9-11 commission rigamarole will not set the truth free.


icecap.us has an article by Pielke Fils claiming that the political consensus for the warmer agenda is collapsing. Scroll down a little on the left. It's also on Roger's blog, Prometheus.

As you may have guessed, progress in the climate wars is about the only thing keeping my spirits up in this mess we're in.


That's good stuff, Ap, and I second the NO EXECUTIVE SUMMARY. It's little known because the hype is that the IPCC report represents the work of thousands of scientists, but the bulk of the report is done by about 50 scientists, and the Summary for Policymakers, by fewer than 10. And look what we got. Horseshit.

Thomas Collins

Truth Commission? We are back to a September 10th mentality.

OK, you want a Truth Commission? Let's have one investigate the individuals who prepared that National Intelligence Estimate concluding that the Persians had suspended their nuclear program. Then the Truth Commission can move on to exploring Congresscritter ties with leftist tyrannies. And the Truth Commission can finish with a flourish by examining the deteriorating state of our nuclear arsenal.


By all means, let more Americans die, seeing that I live in a East Coast city, that probably means a more than likely chance that I'll be one of them. America's desire for self immolation seems
nearly endless. I may stay away from the intertubes for a while, if this keeps up..

This is why I hang out on Atlantic Avenue in Brooklyn, where there are so many Arabs, I figure the terrorists just might not bomb that area.

Thomas Collins

Perhaps a Truth Commission could be convened to examine the degraded state to which multiculturalism is leading Western Civilization. See LUN.


Which means that, at the end of the day, all one gets is a thick report with useless and ignored recommndations, and a narrative that is subtly interpreted to support the recommendations.

So true.
The Truthers gained all of their momentum after the release of the 9/11 commission, and all the truth in the world couldn't stop Rosie O'Donnell from telling us fire can't melt steel.
Then we had the Iraq Study Commission, which was supposed to give us the unvarnished truth about what we were supposed to do in Iraq.

I do approve of Nick Kristof getting the ball rolling by telling the truth about the Wilsons.


Adnan's was my favorite, peter. I keep trying to remember if I saw Obama down there, back in the day.

Rick Ballard


With a commie in the WH all the "Save Gaia" Warmer/Peaker/Watermelon crap has hit the "sell date". As has the utility for promoting the lies which have stimulated "debate" among the credentialed morons concerning the subject[s] in question.

What "New Truths" are being prepared to steer the mob? I'm betting something about the dangers of evil firearms...

Maybe a "Use It or Lose It" counter proposal should be advanced?


They control the Justice Department. They control the whole executive branch, and can figure out what happened if they want. If their man Holder decides that investigations are warranted and the DoJ thinks that crimes were committed, they can prosecute them. Even that will be political theater, but anything else is political circus.

Even without a new Colonel North, I welcome the persecutions if they p*ss enough people off, because these folks are playing with fire.


Of course, a Truth Commission is only needed if we want to make sure Obama's hands stay clean.


Kristoff and most Democrats engaged with this issue know to a moral certainty that the Bush administration practiced torture and feel strongly that any commission engaged in the issue must find the same thing.

That's exactly right. Not Kristof's "its criticisms would have far more credibility," which seems to presume the outcome of any investigation. Why not go all the way like the Red Queen: "Sentence first, verdict afterwards!"


that should be "Note Kristof's...


As they used to say,"If you pick it,it will never get better".It isn't a case of not being able to handle the truth,there can only be three outcomes.Yea,Nay and ??.


Golly, the sooner the better! Nothing would rehabilitate Bush's legacy faster!

When you go hunting for bear, you best be prepared to catch a bear.

Rick Ballard

Point of Information:

It had been my [mis]understanding that UBS was concerned about ripples from the Madoff investigation and closed the accounts of 18,000 tax dodgers as a result. That was not the case. I do not recall reading anything about this indictment:

An indictment unsealed in November alleged that Weil and other unidentified bankers conspired to help 17,000 Americans hide $20 billion of assets in Swiss bank accounts to avoid paying U.S. taxes.
in November.

I wonder if the new Ministry of Truth will become involved in this investigation? Probably. After they sort the 18,000 by the party to which they donated, of course.


Obama is asking for time on the networks next Monday night so that the "people" can see him sign the stimulus bill and talk to the "people" about it...

"I have just signed the stimulus bill. Now I want to tell you what you have done..."

Guess the new "Romper Room" is now a permanent feature on Monday nights...

Sorry Hugh Laurie.


Rick- what does it mean that Robert Wolf, Chairman & CEO, UBS Group Americas was just named to Obama's Economic Advisory Panel?


The "truth commission" garbage is the typical commie ploy to rewrite history to make the good guys bad and the bad guys good. And in Kristof's variant would eventually rope in enlisted SOC operators, low ranking CIA officials, and a handful of low ranking political appointees. Obama would eventually lose control of the thing and lists of individuals would be drawn up for prosecution in Europe and Interpol would be given the list. It would hurt moral in the most sensitive areas of the military and intelligence community, which will dry up intelligence and scale back mission planning. It will be a major defeat for our services and a major victory for our terrorist enemies, so I'm sure the Obama Administration is looking closely at the idea.

Why didn't the media ever want a truth commission to find all the commie collaborators after the end of the Cold War?


I'll bite, it probably means unlike Phil Gramm will not be subject to anyprosecution or sanction for his UBS subprime activities.
Now there's another metaphor, right up there
with the turkey in the cone thing, that also works in this instance, for all of us.


Because where would the staffers for the next administration come from otherwise.


A truth commission puts lots of money in the pockets of lawyers and provides lots of opportunities for perjury traps.

What's not to like?


"I would be in the 'about a quarter' favoring a non-criminal investigation."

TM, please tell me you're just throwing out some red meat to stir up the regulars. (And think what such a commission would do for traffic--those of us who survived our aneurisms would be hitting this page like back in the heyday of Plamegate!) Surely you are not so gullible as to believe that such a commission would accomplish anything positive otherwise.


Can we also have a Truth Commission on the banking crisis?


Exactly, EX


I don't think we have enough money for truth commissions and the stimulus bill. And I'm saving my pennies for when we decide to try the elected officials responsible for this mess.

Fresh Air


Can't we just hang them now and have the trial later?


Think what it could do for the rope industry?


Comrades Leahy, Pelosi, Reid, and Obama will be running the hearings on prime time television with Comrade Beria prosecuting the case next.....after which the guilty parties will be sent to reeducation camps in northern Wyoming.

I feel a backlash is starting to build against these clowns. As the details of the porkulus bill come out they are going to begin taking incredible heat.

I was caught offguard watching Obama's presser on tape delay the other evening and the way he went down a list of reporters to ask him questions. I wonder now if those questions were preselected as well.

One of my major concerns was the content of Obama's character, and I think it is quickly becoming apparent. It's all PR all the time, and it's style over substance as he goes about tearing down the institutions of government that have served well for 200 years. This is getting more serious by the day.

But, we are starting to see cracks in the facade and the blinders are coming off of a lot of eyes. Hopefully he hasn't completely screwed us in two years and we can overturn most of the damage he's doing.

Rick Ballard

Now bad, some of us support the lead industry over the rope industry. The only sure way to determine which is more efficacious is through widespread field trials.


Speaking of truth, Gateway via Malkin says these things are back in the BILL:

- $9 billion for school construction was added back in (originally cut by Nelson-Collins)

· $5 billion increase for the state fiscal stabilization fund (originally cut by Nelson-Collins), making it a grand total of $53.6 billion

· $2 billion for neighborhood stabilization program, money for groups like ACORN

· $1 billion added back for Prevention & Wellness Programs, including STD education

· Federal Coordinating Council for Comparative Effectiveness Research was added back in, leading Americans down the path towards healthcare rationing (63 patient advocacy groups signed a letter voicing their concerns with this provision)



Rick, I'm a big fan of carving knives, especially when I get to carve.


Impeach Obama. Say it again.


Louder, louder.


I could handle the truth, too... but in the present political climate, and with a commission constrained to "the Bush years", what is the chance we would get the truth, and not merely an opportunity to generate sensational headlines so the trashing of Bush can continue?

The answer, if you don't know, is zero! "Truth" is not something that the present Democrat congress does well at all!

Barry Dauphin

A truth Commission that at least starts from the date of the first World Trade Center bombing in 1993 would be the only thing worth considering, since Team Clinton began renditions then and other stuff we don't know about. If not from at least that time frame, forget it.


A Truth Commission has a very Third World ring to it.


More on PORKUS BILL from Malkin:


· Tax relief to help middle class families and small businesses was sharply pared back in order to increase government spending. Public opinion over the last 4 weeks has shown that Americans overwhelming believe tax cuts, and not government spending, are a better way to stimulate the economy.

· Approximately $75 billion in true tax relief was CUT from the Nelson-Collins package. So, while the overall size of the package may have gotten slightly smaller, the spending actually increased.

Well, that should be the end of the BILL because Spector, Nelson and Collins are going to vote against it now, right? LUN

Amused bystander

I can handle the truth, it is that Tom Cruise fellow that give me the willies.

(particularly when he is in Marine dress blues)



The Dems have to rehabilitate their terrorist allies and punish those who would keep us safe from them. The nerve of the Bush Administration to actually kill terrorists when "everyone knows" that the way to deal with terrorism is supplication and tribute.


PUK, that third world ring shall soon be around all of our necks. I hope mine is platinum and sapphire.


Judd Gregg pulls nomination!!!!



Judd Greg just withdrew because of the stimulus and the census.


JM Hanes-

Think your piece on the Commerce Department did some good. Sen. Gregg is dropping out of consideration for Commerce Secertary. So maybe he didn't want to be the patsy afterall.


Whoa, the news traveled fast.


Will he vote against the Damn BILL now?

Captain Hate

Can we also have a Truth Commission on the banking crisis?

When is the Maverick going to "name names and make people famous"?


And O is now talking about how much he loves "can do midwest Republicans"

I kid you not. And he's harrassing some congressperson who is against the stimulus.


Judd Gregg withdraws Commerce Secretary nomination!!! -Says unhappy with Stimulus bill and White House Census decision...dare we hope?


Oh Jane- I just mentioned on the other thread Obama has a new accent.


more jane, more!


"transform our economy for the 21st century"

this sentence bothers me


From Drudge, Gregg's statement:

“As a further matter of clarification, nothing about the vetting process played any role in this decision.

We'll see what they smear him with.


"Yesterday Jim (CEO) said if Congress passes our plan, Caterpillar will be able to rehire some of the people they just laid off"

Some. Well whopdiee doo.


"Truth" is not something that the present Democrat congress does well at all!
No...kidding, buddy.

[Did anybody get that? On that American Thinker post, I'm having people compliment me for the flowery language I stole from Obama, which makes me think I'm living too deep inside my head.]


He doesn't even make sense - "first we will have to spend lots of money, and then we will have to stop and be responsible".

Gimme a break.


Obama is trying to not use the catastrophe language, and instead say something flowery about our future, but he is stumbling over it like crazy.
I don't think he's taking questions.

(He mentioned Caterpillar emerging from recession in the 1980's and they did, in part by breaking the union and putting plants in the south)


Someone needs to file suit as soon as the census is moved.


Whoa! Judd Gregg quit. Irreconcilable differences with Obama. Tapper's got it.


Even David Schuster on MSNBC said it was kind of eerie the way he was referring to Republicans he likes.

Yeah Jane, I noticed he talked about not pushing this off on our children.

Very few applause breaks.


Wow, I put that up without reading the thread or seeing the 'Whoas'. Whoa, whoo hoo. Are we getting inbred or are we all equally stunned?


WOO HOO! Glad to hear the news about Gregg. Let's hope he votes against the stimulus now.

JM Hanes

Handling the truth is a whole lot easier than getting the truth.

When half the country thinks the former Administration should be indicted for unspecified crimes, and the second half gets most of their news from the first, the stats are not surprising.

Awhile back, after persuading an otherwise rational friend in New York that the surge was working, he allowed as how he did think that the Administration should be held accountable for its crimes though. I asked, "What crimes?" which clearly surprised him, because he simply took it for granted. He was also slightly nonplussed, because he couldn't actually come up with any answers, of course. I suspect I'm not the only one who didn't realize just how much of the country might be willing to entertain mitigating circumstances, but start out taking the existence of crimes as fact.

Obama takes his usual non-committal stance on Truth Commissions, etc, but if he doesn't put a lid on this one, I think he, himself, will end up in an unexpected world of woe. I'm picturing an internal struggle between defending executive prerogatives, and either risking political capital by continuing Bush policies which are sure to become hot potatoes again and repudiating policies for political reasons, when he knows they are key to national security.


Here’s a dose of the stupidity of the stimulus bill and the “clamor” for its passage:

Here's the latest on the Caterpillar story, from LA Times (yes I know, that right-wing smear machine):

“Rehirings at Caterpillar Inc. hinge on stimulus bill’s passage, White House asserts

The company won’t say how many laid-off employees might return to work. The world’s biggest maker of earth-moving equipment recently announced it was cutting more than 20,000 jobs from its workforce….

By Christi Parsons and Peter Wallsten
February 12, 2009

Reporting from Washington — Even before the stimulus deal was complete in Congress, President Obama said Wednesday that evidence already showed his economic rescue plan would improve the lives of American workers.

The White House asserted three times Wednesday that Caterpillar Inc., which has laid off workers recently, would be able to rehire employees if Congress approved the stimulus bill.

But as the president prepared for a trip today to visit a Caterpillar plant in East Peoria, Ill., it was unclear whether the world’s biggest maker of earth-moving equipment could provide an example of the stimulus bill’s job-creating powers.

The Peoria, Ill.-based company would not say how many laid-off employees might return to work, or when. Nor would it say how many workers targeted for upcoming layoffs might keep their jobs.

Caterpillar also would not say whether the rehired employees would come from its U.S. workforce, which makes up about half of the firm’s 112,000 employees.”

Ha ha ha ha! Suckers! This is what happens when morons don’t have a clue how economic decisions are made. Caterpillar just announced 2100 US layoffs (in IL, no less) after posting record revenues and earnings in 2008.


kim- I think we are all in each others' heads. I made a comment in the other thread about Obama's speech, and it is the exact same 2 points Jane was posting about on this thread.


Good for Gregg!!! Now if Specter and Collins and Snow would resign!!

Truth Commission my eye. (I'm being polite.)

Zinni would be interesting. HEH.

Another clown show distraction.

The best thing we can do for our fellow citizens us encourage them to cancel their news subscriptions and turn off radio and tv. Listen to good music, Read (or reread) the classics,,and re-develop rational thught and sound judgement free from all this brain deadening, idiotic noise.


I'll bet he does vote against it, bad, because the bill is what he says he differed with Obama about.

That will be very nice if Obama's own Commerce Secretary designee deplores it. I wish he'd have the strength to get explicit.


I think the Gregg nomination may have just pulled the plug on the Porkulus Bill. Reid and Pelosi were holding up the vote for a reason, perhaps this one, but now this is going to create a tidal wave in DC.

Turning down the president after agreeing to the nomination, and specifically on matters of principle has not been done in my memory. I cannot recall an instance in reading history where this has happened.

This, I believe may be Obama's Waterloo. The dirty facts are coming out now, and I have to believe that people are going to question the whole damned thing. Obama's reputation is riding on this, and he just got jiujitsu'ed. I want a Judd Gregg Kung Fu grip doll!


MSNBC is saying Obama just found out about Gregg as he was getting ready to make his speech. Perhaps that's why he was so uninspiring.

How stupid does he think we are to buy the "Caterpillar may be able to rehire some people" line?


I hope Judd Gregg doesn't have any sealed divorce records out there.


Rehirings at Caterpillar depend on how well Cat's business is doing. If in fact there was a lot of public works spending, a lot of the established base of equipment that is sitting idle right now would begin to be used first. Then, companies would scour the used market for deals (there are a lot in China right now), and only then would they start buying new equipment. In the long term Cat benefits, but right now I think it would take a year for them to rehire lost personnel.



I like the term thugt....pretty much what is substituted for real thought these days.....


Gregg press conference at 5:20

Red Meat alert!


The new version of the bill cuts highways and bridges by a billion.


If PORKUS BILL goes down because of Gregg, he will make Palin look like she was on a cakewalk. He and his will be Palinized.



I've been saying for awhile that if we can delay this bill thru the weekend, we have a chance of beating it. I have no idea why I think that, it's not like the band of 3 turncoats are going to change their minds.


I'm sure Judd quit after reading the comments here.
I expect the three stooges and perhaps even Feinstein to vote against the bill ("I voted against it" they will beable to say in their next campaign) But they won't filibuster, McConnell has said he won't support one either (will it even require a cloture vote when it comes back from conference?) so it will pass anyway.


FOX NEWS just said there are rumors of up to 15 republicans ready to vote for PORKUS in the House.


Gregg is going to hold a news conference in thirty minutes--explaining irrevocable differences with the Zero administration.


Not happening bad. That reeks of Obama rumor mongering.


The Dems are furious with Gregg.
They are so weird. They have everything they want, and they get mad when they can't control even the minor players. First they were furious for House Republicans not voting for their bill (even though it passed!) and now they are mad that Gregg refuses to become the next Paul O'Neill.


Heh--Jane is just on fire!:-)


Over at http://hotair.com/archives/2009/02/12/breaking-gregg-withdraws-at-commerce/>Hot Air, Capt. Ed has some good insight:

Update: Barack Obama will take another big hit to his transition, but the man who really deserves the obloquy this time is Rahm Emanuel. The census ploy was a transparent attempt to hijack the data for political purposes, and pulling that stunt after Gregg’s appointment made Gregg look like a political eunuch. It was classic overreach, and it’s classic Emanuel.

It will be interesting to see how long Obama can maintain the pretense of "bipartisanship" with one of the most viciously partisan hacks as his chief of staff.


Wouldn't it be great if Gregg would "work over" Spectre, Collins and Snowe--now?


FOX NEWS just said there are rumors of up to 15 republicans ready to vote for PORKUS in the House.

Posted by: bad | February 12, 2009 at 04:59 PM

Sounds like a desperate effort to get people to chase another story and knock Gregg off the top of the news.

Old Lurker

"This, I believe may be Obama's Waterloo."

Pass that pipe back to Phelpes, Matt.



John Harwood of CNBC says Gregg can't be faulted for integrity in this decision to withdraw.


Glenn Beck just reminded us that last year Michelle Obama made fun of a $600 rebate check - she said "whaddya gonna do? Go buy some earrings?"

$600 is the tax cut Obama has laid out for people making less than $75k a year.

That video needs to go viral.

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