Eat At Joes

Just a regular Joe who is angry that the USA, the country he loves, is being corrupted and damaged from within and trying to tell his fellow Americans the other half of the story that they don’t get on the TV News.

Location: Chicago, Illinois, United States

Monday, December 26, 2005

No Privacy For You – Unless You’re a Right Winger

Originally created to spy on foreign adversaries, the N.S.A. was never supposed to be turned inward. Thirty years ago, Senator Frank Church, the Idaho Democrat who was then chairman of the select committee on intelligence, investigated the agency and came away stunned. "That capability at any time could be turned around on the American people," he said in 1975, "and no American would have any privacy left, such is the capability to monitor everything: telephone conversations, telegrams, it doesn't matter. There would be no place to hide."He added that if a dictator ever took over, the N.S.A. "could enable it to impose total tyranny, and there would be no way to fight back."

Rush Limbaugh and his lawyer had these competing quotes on privacy and the right to discover if crimes have been committed. First Rush:

“Liberals and Democrats,” Limbaugh claimed, “are only opposed to this because they don’t want anyone finding out what they’ve been up to. … What have you folks been doing that you so desperately want to keep hidden?”
- Rush Limbaugh, from his radio show on December 22, 2005

On the other hand when it happens to be Rush…

Rush's attorney Roy Black with Wolf Blitzer on December 15, 2005:

BLITZER: If Rush Limbaugh has nothing to hide and has done nothing wrong, what’s the problem with letting the prosecutor speak to the doctors and go through all the records?

BLACK: Well, Wolf, that’s an excellent question. A lot of people ask this all the time. You know what? We have a right of privacy in this country that I think is important for us to hold onto. I mean, we could let prosecutors and police into our bedrooms, search our computers, watch us having sex. We could let them do all these things, but then we would have a police state. We would no longer have a democracy. I think it’s very important to fight these privacy battles—and Rush Limbaugh has taken on this battle of privacy with your doctor, and I think it has really been a public service for him. Not only for himself but everybody else who wants their medical records and medical treatment kept private and not to be disclosed in the press or with the police or prosecutors or anyone else who has no business being there.


Isn’t that interesting. When it’s not Rush it’s perfectly OK to invade someone’s privacy. But when Rush’s records concerning his shopping for doctors to prescribe Oxycontin which he ground up and snorted as hillbilly heroin we have a right to privacy and any infringement in Rush’s right to privacy makes our country a police state. Hypocrite!

Hats off to for these dueling quotes.

Do you hear that voice?

Thursday, December 22, 2005

Nebraska Man Catches Fish with Two Mouths

A Nebraska man caught a rainbow trout with two (count ‘em two) mouths. What does he do? Does he donate it to a veterinarian school to have its DNA tested to see how this mutation came to be? Does he give it to toxicologists to see if its mutation was caused by toxins in the water? No, this gomer smokes the thing and eats it. Yes, eats it.

Maybe they should check his DNA.

Red State Fish

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Daily Quotes…

“I will make decisions on troop levels based on the progress we see on the ground and the advice of our military leaders - not based on artificial timetables set by politicians in Washington.”
- George W. Bush 12/18/2005

“I think it’s also important for the president to lay out a timetable as to how long they will be involved and when they will be withdrawn.”
- George W. Bush on 06/05/1999 complaining about Clinton and promising he would offer a timetable and tell the people when the troops would be withdrawn if elected president.

“Now, by the way, any time you hear the United States government talking about wiretap, it requires — a wiretap requires a court order. Nothing has changed, by the way. When we’re talking about chasing down terrorists, we’re talking about getting a court order before we do so.”
- George W. Bush April 2004 more than 2 years after he signed the first Executive Order ordering the NSA to tap the phones and emails of American citizens without court orders. He renewed this order every 30 days after that.

“Scott Peterson, coed missing in Aruba, Runaway Bride, Michael Jackson, fluff, fluff, fluff. Softball questions to GOP. Rove’s talking points. Scott Peterson, coed missing in Aruba, Runaway Bride, Michael Jackson, fluff, fluff, fluff.”
- Corporate Lapdog Mainstream Media pretending to fulfill their obligation to inform the public of the issues that will actually affect them like nearly half a Trillion Dollars spent on two wars and the destruction of civil liberties.

Friday, December 16, 2005

Another US Journalist Admits Taking Bribes for Favorable News Stories

Columnist Doug Bandow resigned on Thursday after admitting that he had accepted payments from indicted GOP lobbyist and Republican fundraiser Jack Abramoff for writing articles favorable to his clients. Bandow now admits that he’s been on the take since the 90’s often receiving $2000 per column.

Abramoff also paid Peter Ferrara, a senior policy adviser at the conservative Institute for Policy Innovation who had a high profile in the recent Social Security debate. Ferrara now admits to taking money from Abramoff to write op-ed pieces boosting the lobbyist's clients. More on this item here and here.

Earlier journalists Armstrong Williams and Maggie Gallagher were caught being paid by the Bush Administration to write and broadcast reports favorable to the administration. Also the White House allowed a fake reporter (and part-time gay prostitute), James Dale Guckert, using a fake name (Jeff Gannon) and working for what turns out to be a fake news outlet (a front for special interest group) free range of the White House including asking the President leading and planted questions at press conferences. I’ve lost count how many US journalists have admitted to being on the take. The scary part is that the ones that have been outed so far say that it is far more common than the public could possibly imagine. One reporter said that this is just the tip of the iceberg. We in the US have the best press money can buy!

How the Grinch Started a War on Christmas

Thursday, December 15, 2005

Non-Partisan Congressional Research Service Reports: Congress Did NOT See Same Intelligence as Bush Administration Before War

Alfred Cumming, Specialist in Intelligence and National Security, Foreign Affairs, Defense and Trade Division of the non-Partisan Congressional Research Service and his staff completed a formal report for Congress showing once and for all that Congress definitely did NOT have the same intelligence as the Bush Administration when it was asked to give Bush authorization to use force in Iraq through the War Powers Act and still does not have access to the same intelligence. Congress members have been asking for dozens of the President's Daily Briefs (PDBs) which would give them more of the information that the President had in the lead up to the war. The President and his administration have continued to refuse to give Congress members this information, and yet the administration and the President’s supporters in the press continue to claim that Congress had the same intel as they did. Now we have a formal report that this is a lie. Read it and weep…for our country.

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

On the Death Penalty and Revenge and Redemption

I posted a comment on another blog that had a post on the execution of Tookie Williams. A reader posted a response that Christians who opposed the death penalty were not following the Bible. I posted the following response to the original poster and in the middle a comment to the reader who claimed Jesus supported the death penalty.

I can respect your thoughtful struggle with the issue of the death penalty and reconciling it with a pro-life stance. I’m in the same boat in that while I believe that the death penalty is inconsistent with my pro-life stance, I’m pretty certain that if my wife or children or sisters or brother or anyone else I love were murdered I would want the killer to die. That’s a natural instinctual reaction. Revenge. Now to your claim that the “left” is “canonizing” Tookie Williams, I don’t really see that. I have not read his books which attempt to get young poor blacks in neighborhoods beset with gangs to avoid the gang life, but I am told about his efforts to keep kids from following in his footsteps. I don’t know all of the details of this case, but the danger with ignoring that a murderer can change is that it may send an unintended message to others in prison: that redemption will be ignored. If our intention is simply to eradicate anyone who may have committed murder then this is fine. If instead our intention is that murderers may be redeemed and even if they never see the light of day as a free man or woman they are not executed then we may need to rethink this.

To the poster who claims that the teachings of Jesus support the death penalty, remember that Jesus was himself the recipient of the death penalty. His words on an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth:

‘You have heard that It was said, "An eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth." But now I tell you: do not take revenge on someone who wrongs you. If anyone slaps you on the right cheek, let him slap your left cheek too.’ (Matthew 5:38-39) ‘You have heard it said, "Love your friends, hate your enemies." But now I tell you: love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, so that you may become the sons of your Father In heaven. For he makes his sun to shine on those who do good and to those who do evil. Why should God reward you if you love only the people who love you? Even the tax collectors do that! And if you speak only to your friends, have you done anything out of the ordinary? Even the pagans do that! You must be perfect—just as your Father in heaven is perfect’ (Matthew 5:43-48).

And the Apostle Paul said:

‘Never take revenge, my friends, but instead let God's anger do it. For the scripture says: "I will take revenge, I will pay back, says the Lord." (Romans 12:19) If your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him drink; for by so doing you will heap burning coals upon his head’ (Romans 12:20)

The feelings of revenge that you and I would feel if someone we loved were murdered is natural. God through the Bible calls us not to be natural men (and women) but to be transformed into new creations turning away from our sinful past and achieving redemption ourselves. I hope that neither you nor I are ever in the situation that the families of the vitims of Tookie Williams or other murderers are. I hope also that we are never in the situation that Tookie was in for there but for the grace of God go I.

My God bless you,



Update: Jesus was confronted with the death penalty one other time. A woman caught in the act of committing adultery was brought before him along with two eye witnesses. According to Mosaic Law (the commands in the Old Testament) she was to be stoned to death for her crime. Jesus stooped and wrote something on the ground, and said, “Let him among you who is without sin cast the first stone.” Then he continued writing on the ground. We suspect that he was writing the sins of those demanding the death penalty for the woman. As they read what he was writing they ran away. When none of her accusers was left, Jesus asked her, “Is there no one to condemn you?” She said there were none. Jesus responded, “Than neither do I. Go and avoid this sin from now on.”

Confronted with the Old Testament demands of an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth death penalty, Jesus instead gave clemency to the woman. His acts of forgiveness are meant to be a model for our own behavior. Too bad so many who call themselves Christians fail to follow in his footsteps. Remember the crowd gathered around him as he stood before Pontius Pilate crying, “Crucify him! Crucify him!” They are the ones who cry out for blood today and will cry out for blood for generations to come.

Merry Christmas to one and all. May God forgive us all our sins.


Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Bill O'Reilly Can’t Stop Lying about Christmas

The other day Bill O’Reilly got caught making bogus claims against Saginaw Township over his pretend "War on Christmas."

WNEW-TV channel 5 in Michigan covered the story:

"In Saginaw , Michigan , the township opposes red and green clothing on Anyone, In Saginaw Township they basically said anybody, we don't want you wearing red or green. I would dress up from head to toe in red to green if I were in Saginaw Michigan "
-Bill O'Reilly on his program the Radio Factor.

WNEM TV-5 talked to Saginaw Township supervisor Tim Braun who says O'Reilly's comments are flat out not true. Braun goes on to say the township hall has red and green Christmas lights adorning the building at night. It turns out there’s no truth to O’Reilly’s claims. He just made it up.

Then on both The Radio Factor and The O'Reilly Factor, he falsely claimed a Texas school district "told students they couldn't wear red and green because they were Christmas colors." This is also not true. Last year the Plano Public School District wanted to prevent the handing out of religious materials at holiday parties and on school grounds, but the courts ruled that they had to allow it, and the school had decided to allow it even before the judgment. No ban on anything Christmas including religious materials has been in effect this year. Certainly not the banning of Christmass colored clothing. O’Reilly doesn’t care...he just lied about it: not once but twice. He lied about it on his radio show and on his TV show. He called them fascists for this pretend infraction of not allowing red and green clothing.

O'Reilly falsely claimed that "spiritual" Christmas stamps are no longer being offered. He claimed it’s the first time in his lifetime that they did not sell religious stamps for Christmas. Actually each year the Post Office issues a different Madonna and Child stamp with Mary and the Baby Jesus and this year is no different. I invite you to go to the Post Office and buy some. They are the same price as other stamps.

Ironically, the Post Office did once try to eliminate the Mary and Jesus stamp, but then President Bill Clinton intervened and ordered them to continue offering the religious Christmas stamps. O’Reilly didn't mention that.

O’Reilly recently got caught lying about the Daily Show, a comedy program, claiming that a program from last year was actually from this year and was further evidence of the War on Christmas. They called him on his lie proving it to be false.

He just can’t stop lying about this pretend War on Christmas. By the way the Bush Administration recently sent out “Holiday Cards” all of which proudly wished “Happy Holidays” and all over the White House web site you will find “Happy Holidays” greetings to all Americans. O’Reilly claims that the replacing of “Merry Christmas” with “Happy Holidays” is being perpetrated by the secular liberals bent on destroying Chrismas and insulting Christians. Apparently President Bush and his staff have now joined the ranks of secular liberals bent on destroying Chrismas and insulting Christians. Shame on you Mr. President, you anti-Christian liberal!

Sadly O’Reilly’s gullible viewers and listeners including my Harvard educated brother-in-law believe his lies. They assume that he’s checked his facts (which he probably has, but he doesn’t care). O’Reilly knows that if you repeat a lie frequently enough it becomes believed in spite of its falseness. Sad to say, he’s right.

By the way, Merry Christmas! No lie!

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

Bush Admin Just Can’t Spend Our Tax Dollars Fast Enough for Bribes and Pro-Bush Propadanda

There have been many instances of the Bush Administration paying journalists with our tax dollars and even using our taxes to create fake news videos sent to TV stations across America. They spent millions of our tax dollars for these purposes. All of them ruled illegal, but the Bush Admin keeps doing it anyway. Recently it came out that the Bush Administration’s Department of Defense is using millions more of our tax dollars to bribe Iraqi newspapers to print news favorable to the Bush Administration. Now it comes out that they got the nation of Pakistan to include an English language poem in their official high school curriculum entitled “The Leader” that gushes about a great leader and the first letters of each line spell out “President George W. Bush.” I’m not making this up. Read the article here and the poem here:

THE LEADER by anonymous (but guess who ;-)

P atient and steady with all he must bear,
R eady to meet every challenge with care,
E asy in manner, yet solid as steel,
S trong in his faith, refreshingly real.
I sn't afraid to propose what is bold,
D oesn't conform to the usual mould,
E yes that have foresight, for hindsight won't do,
N ever backs down when he sees what is true,
T ells it all straight, and means it all too.

G oing forward and knowing he's right,
E ven when doubted for why he would fight,
O ver and over he makes his case clear,
R eaching to touch the ones who won't hear.
G rowing in strength he won't be unnerved,
E ver assuring he'll stand by his word.

W anting the world to join his firm stand,

B racing for war, but praying for peace,
U sing his power so evil will cease,
S o much a leader and worthy of trust,
H ere stands a man who will do what he must.

And let us not forget modest! I don't think even Saddam had such glowing praise. You just can’t buy unabashed adulation propaganda like that. Well, actually you can, but you need to take the money from the US taxpayers first. Nice to see that millions of our hard earned tax dollars are being given to US journalists, Iraqi newspapers, and now Pakistani government officials for pro-Bush hero worship propaganda purposes. Gee, if only I’d waited maybe they would have bribed me to post the Bush is the greatest most powerful most excellent leader ever poem on my website.


Update: It has now come out that the Bush Administration’s Defense Department has been spending $400 Million more of our Tax Dollars to plant stories in other countries’ press using third parties to disguise their real source (a practice otherwise known as propaganda). So now hundreds of millions of our tax dollars are being given as bribes to US reporters, Iraqi newspapers, Pakistani textbook makers, and the press of every other country on the planet.

I think it’s perfectly legitimate for the US Government to put the Bush Administration’s side of the story out there, but they have to admit that it is coming from them. If they pretend that their side of the story is coming from independent sources, that’s lying…that’s propaganda! That’s what we have fought against for 200 years. We objected to the Soviet Union putting their stories in a newspaper called Pravda (Russian for truth) which claimed to be independent. We objected to Germany during WWII propagandizing their claims under Minister of Propaganda Joseph Goebbels. We as a nation have stood up to and denounced propaganda for decades. We must have the courage of our convictions, and if we want the world to know our side of the story we must admit that it comes from us and not hide behind phony names as sources of our information. To do so is cowardly. We must not be a nation of cowards. The Bush Administration by doing this is smearing the good name of the USA and spending $400 Million of our tax dollars to fund this smear of our reputation.


Friday, December 02, 2005

Congressman Releases Searchable Database of 237 Specific Misleading Statements Made by Bush Administration Officials about the Threat Posed by Iraq

The Online Searchable Database can be found here.

Prepared at the direction of Rep. Henry A. Waxman, Iraq on the Record is a searchable collection of 237 specific misleading statements made by Bush Administration officials about the threat posed by Iraq. It contains statements that were misleading based on what was known to the Administration at the time the statements were made. It does not include statements that appear mistaken only in hindsight. If a statement was an accurate reflection of U.S. intelligence at the time it was made, it was excluded even if it now appears erroneous.

Again, these are 237 purposefully misleading statements made by Bush Administration officials about Iraq. Ones that can be verifiably shown to be in conflict with intelligence analyses and other information they had access to at the time and since. Often the correct information was only available to the President and his people, but they did not share it. These are 237 deliberately misleading statements, not errors. 237 separate instances of deliberately misleading statements made by Bush Administration officials designed to convince the American people to go to war in Iraq. Clinton may have lied about an extramarital affair, but these guys have lied at least 237 different times in order to start a war that has killed more than 2000 Americans and continues to kill Americans every day. Clinton was impeached and nearly removed from office for lying about an extramarital affair. Bush and his people have lied at least 237 different times to start a war. Doesn't that warrant impeachment?

Rush Limbaugh Favors Kidnapping of Christian Missionaries Who Are Following Christ’s Words “Blessed Are the Peacemakers”

On November 29, nationally syndicated radio host Rush Limbaugh read an Associated Press report about the apparent kidnapping of four Christian Peacemaker Teams (CPT) members by an Iraqi insurgent group. Limbaugh announced that "part of me likes this." He explained: "Well, here's why I like it. I like any time a bunch of leftist feel-good hand-wringers are shown reality."

Back a few years ago Rush Limbaugh was outraged that Liberals were calling Saddam Hussein a war criminal because he gassed the Kurds in Iraq. Rush called liberals critical of Saddam guilty of HATE SPEECH for slandering such a noble person as Saddam Hussein:

"And now the liberals want to stop President Reagan from selling chemical warfare agents and military equipment to Saddam Hussein, and why? Because Saddam 'allegedly' gassed a few Kurds in his own country. Mark my words. All of this talk of Saddam Hussein being a 'war criminal' or 'committing crimes against humanity' is the same old thing. LIBERAL HATE SPEECH! And speaking of poison gas . . . I SAY WE ROUND UP ALL THE DRUG ADDICTS AND GAS THEM."
- Rush (oxycontin addict) Limbaugh, Nov. 3, 1988

Now he pretends he was always against Saddam and it was the liberals who supported him. Revisionist historians strike again.

Sadly my brother-in-law (who is a born-again-Christian) is one of Limbaugh’s biggest supporters. I don’t know how they can read the words of the forgiving loving Jesus and square them with the hate speech of right-wing talk radio. Maybe they no longer read the word of God. He and millions like him don’t see that Limbaugh and his like preach the exact opposite of Jesus Christ’s loving and peaceful teachings. They think that Limbaugh is the source of truth when he’s obviously lying to them about his and the Republican’s previous support of Saddam and Saddam’s use of Chemical WMD. I have another brother-in-law (a graduate of Harvard no less) who is Bill O’Reilly’s biggest fan. He’s completely blind to the fact that O’Reilly deliberately manipulates the audio and video clips on his shows to convince his viewers and listeners of things that just aren’t true. This is just one example of which there are too many to recount. O’Reilly attacks those who expose his lies, and his faithful minions believe him rather than their own lying eyes. I now understand how so many people in Germany in the 1930s and 1940s could have been so deluded.

Thursday, December 01, 2005

Toward a New Iraq Policy - a New Beginning

The current Bush Administration Iraq War Policy is a failure. The justification for invading Iraq was based on false information. Saddam was not involved in the September 11 attack and had no operational links to al Qaeda. Saddam never had nuclear weapons. Saddam had gotten rid of his biological and chemical WMD back in the 90s because he was afraid of us. Saddam was no threat to the US. Bush, Cheney and Rumsfeld ignored military experts who advised them that the number of troops necessary to win the peace would be greater than the number they used and so chaos broke out leading to almost 2100 US deaths and possibly 120,000 Iraqi civilians dead. Bush, Cheney and Rumsfeld’s plan to use torture and humiliation to cow the people of Iraq have swelled the numbers of the insurgency and caused a mushrooming of the ranks of terrorists worldwide. Using White Phosphorous munitions on the Iraqis including civilians (and lying about it until we were caught) when we had condemned Saddam for using it on the Kurds has made us out to be hypocrites. It has left the US viewed by the rest of the world as a human rights violator and an ogre. The Bush Administration vacillates between telling us that there are very few trained Iraqis after two years of our training them and telling us that there are a large number of trained Iraqis despite reports that they are abandoning their posts and either joining the insurgency or melting into the landscape.


The Bush Iraq War Policy is a failure! We need a new beginning. Scrap the old failed policy and begin with a fresh start. List what steps need to be done for us to truly declare mission accomplished in Iraq and guess what: the insurgency will move heaven and earth to achieve those steps to get us the hell out. Think about that. We get to decide what they need to do and they’ll do it to hasten our departure: a win-win situation. How about it, Mr. President and members of Congress? Draw up a new Iraq Policy that maps out what the Iraqis need to do to get us out, and they will do it. We will then truly have accomplished our mission.

The problem is that this has already been suggested by the Democrats and Bush's answer is "we will stay the course." Military experts tell us that the insurgency is getting stronger and that we will be fighting them for years to come and that after all those more years we still won’t vanquish them. When you are headed for a cliff, staying the course is a dumb idea!

President Bush and the Republicans in Congress refuse to admit the old policy is flawed and start fresh with a new beginning: a new Iraq Policy that could work because the insurgents have a vested interest in making it work. So we need to vote out the current crop of Republicans who are standing in the way of a new beginning and replace them with Americans who can look at this issue from a new vantage point. Then we can begin again and win in Iraq. And our fighting men and women can return home to their families who love them and their nation who value their lives and limbs.