Great Idea From Altercation

I think that the presidents of MIT, Cal Tech, the University of Chicago, and all the other major universities with high-priced investments in the physical sciences should call a press conference and announce, much to their regret, that they no longer will consider any application they receive from any high school student in the state of Kansas. Sadly, theyshould say, due to the state's publicly expressed preference for mythology over science, they no longer can be confident that students from Kansas are sufficiently grounded in the basics for those students to succeed at these extremely competitive universities. Disappointed? Tough. Go to Bob Jones University.


Another Poll Round-up

Fox News:

FOX Poll: President Bush's Ratings Continue to Suffer

Today, 36 percent of Americans approve and 53 percent disapprove of the job Bush is doing as president.

Since the beginning of his second term, his approval is down 26 percentage points among independents, 16 points among women, 15 points among whites and 11 points among men.


Associated Press:

Poll: Most Americans Doubt Bush's Honesty

WASHINGTON - Most Americans say they aren't impressed by the ethics and honesty of the Bush administration, already under scrutiny for its justifications for an unpopular war in
Iraq and its role in the leak of a covert CIA officer's identity.

Almost six in 10 — 57 percent — said they do not think the Bush administration has high ethical standards and the same portion says President Bush is not honest, an AP-Ipsos poll found.

Whites, Southerners and white evangelicals were most likely to believe Bush is honest.

Bush, who promised in the 2000 campaign to uphold "honor and integrity" in the White House, last week ordered White House workers, from presidential advisers to low-ranking aides, to attend ethics classes.

Great Letter:

Letters: Bush administration must devise exit strategy
President Bush has completely failed in his responsibility as commander-in-chief. He sent our troops to war without the suitable equipment, based on faulty, inaccurate intelligence and no plan for success. Too many lives are being lost and little to no progress is being made. Costs continue to rise, with more than $300 billion taxpayers' dollars wasted, and Iraq is becoming the international training ground for terrorists. Our troops, our allies and the American people deserve better.
The President cannot make up for the mistakes that led us to war in Iraq. But he can stop ignoring the facts, ignoring the experts and ignoring the legitimate concerns of the American people. Iraq had no weapons of mass destruction, al-Qaida was not present in Iraq before America invaded and Iraq did not play any role in September 11th. These faulty reasons and others from the Bush administration are unacceptable. In fact, these were all lies made up to "sell" the war to the American people as Bush and Cheney met with their staff to determine how to invade Iraq months before Sept. 11, 2001, even occurred.
President Bush needs to answer the question that every American is struggling to answer: What is our plan to succeed in Iraq and at what point can our troops begin to return home? And he needs to do that sooner rather than later, because our troops are not getting what they deserve from this administration.
As the American death toll in Iraq surpassed 2,000 last week, and is at 2,037 (as of Nov. 3) we need to begin an exit strategy. Call on the Bush administration and Congress to form a plan to get it now, before it's too late. It is time we really begin to support our troops: bring them home!
Kyle Ruedinger Oshkosh



Budget in Cartoon


Cheney on Torture

Click on the headline...

Petri on Budget Reconcilliation

“This is actually one very small step in the budget process,” Petri said. “The bill has a lot of pluses and minuses and if it doesn’t pass then of course the bad things won’t happen, but the good things won’t either.”

Click in headline for link...

The bad things about this bill:
Cuts in Medicare (for the poor)
Cuts in College Student Aid (for the poor)
Cuts in Child Support Collection (for the poot)
Cuts in Food Stamps (for the poor)

The 'good' things about this bill:
Cuts in Taxes (for the wealthy)

This bill cuts over $50 billion in social programs for the needy, and also cuts taxes $70 billion. Over halfof those cuts go to people with incomes over $1 million.

Wanna guess where Petri's income is?


I have a message for Gregg Underheim:

Madison - The state Assembly voted Tuesday to send to Gov. Jim Doyle a bill that requires doctors to inform women seeking abortions that a fetus is developed enough after 20 weeks to feel pain.

However, during a public hearing on the bill, no one stepped forward with evidence that fetuses of that age are not capable of feeling pain, said Rep. Gregg Underheim (R-Oshkosh), chairman of the committee that sent the bill to the full Assembly.



Get that bill through committee!

Here's an idea - let's add an amendment to the conscience clause (patient abandonment) that anyone refusing to fill prescriptions needs to read a statement saying they know they are harming the patient.

Does my vote matter?

One Vote decides Hortonville Measure
One voter decides million dollar school referendum.

A single ballot was the difference approving Hortonville's school referendum. Hortonville's lone measure was asking for one million dollars to purchase property for future use as a school complex site.

The measure was approved on an 884 to 883 vote.

The county canvasser still has to certify the final ballot figures.



How Popular is Cheney?

Cheney now seven points behind the public beating of children

Thursday, 03 November 2005
Bush's approval rating has fallen to 35. Maybe America is starting to realize that secret prisons and endless war aren't really the best government we can possibly hope for.

Dick Cheney, in the same poll, has a 19 percent approval rating.

19 percent.

That's two points less popular than cheating on your spouse and seven points behind corporal punishment in schools.

Dick Cheney is now 18 points behind the number of people who believe alien beings have secretly contacted the U.S. government.

Bush, similarly, now trails the number of people who think astrology is scientific by five points.


Click on the link for all the figures.

Where is America Headed?

Cheney Seeks CIA Exemption to Torture Ban

WASHINGTON - Vice President Dick Cheney made an unusual personal appeal to Republican senators this week to allow CIA exemptions to a proposed ban on the torture of terror suspects in U.S. custody, according to participants in a closed-door session.

Cheney told his audience the United States doesn't engage in torture, these participants added, even though he said the administration needed an exemption from any legislation banning "cruel, inhuman or degrading" treatment in case the president decided one was necessary to prevent a terrorist attack.

Link in Headline...

Walker to Poor: Let Them Eat Healthcare Cake!

Milwaukee County intends to triple its waiting period to six months for the low-income uninsured to obtain free health care, under a change quietly adopted by the County Board and supported by County Executive Scott Walker this week.

Hurricane Katrina, which displaced hundreds of New Orleans residents to Wisconsin, showed the need for timely health care services for people ineligible for other welfare programs, Helgerson said.

County health officials are concerned about the health care ramifications of the change but point out that emergency room care would still be available to those waiting to qualify for the program.

Health advocates have expressed concern about whether people might avoid getting help and wind up sicker. Others question the wisdom of pushing more uncompensated care onto hospitals, a growing trend that drives up health care costs for the insured.


Isn't It Ironic?

The NHL's Nashville Predators have a player names Scott Walker...

...what position does he play:

right wing Scott Walker in the lineup


Click in headline for link...

The Bush Supreme Court in Cartoon:


Iraq War Supporter Fareed Zakaria: Bush, Just Stop Torturing!

I have a suggestion that might improve Bush's image abroad—and it doesn't require that Karen Hughes go anywhere. It would actually help Bush at home as well, and it has the additional virtue of being the right thing to do. It's simple: end the administration's disastrous experiment with officially sanctioned torture.

For example, when Rumsfeld read a report documenting some of the new interrogation procedures at Guantanamo in November 2002, including having detainees stand for four hours, he scribbled a note in the margin, "Why is standing limited to 4 hours?... I stand for 8 hours a day." (Rumsfeld probably does not stand for eight hours, scarcely clad and barely fed, with bright lights, prison guards and attack dogs trained on him.)

During the past few months, declassified documents and testimony from Army officers make abundantly clear that torture and abuse of prisoners is something that has become quite widespread since 9/11. The most recent evidence comes from autopsies of 44 prisoners who have died in Iraq and Afghanistan in U.S. custody. Most died under circumstances that suggest torture. The reports use words like "strangulation," "asphyxiation" and "blunt force injuries." Even the "natural" deaths were caused by "Arteriosclerotic Cardiovascular disease"—in other words, sudden heart attacks.

Ask any soldier in Iraq when the general population really turned against the United States and he will say, "Abu Ghraib." A few months before the scandal broke, Coalition Provisional Authority polls showed Iraqi support for the occupation at 63 percent. A month after Abu Ghraib, the number was 9 percent. Polls showed that 71 percent of Iraqis were surprised by the revelations. Most telling, 61 percent of Iraqis polled believed that no one would be punished for the torture at Abu Ghraib. Of the 29 percent who said they believed someone would be punished, 52 percent said that such punishment would extend only to "the little people."


Northwestern Gets the Patriot Act:

There’s a serious shift in American standards here. We now presume guilt until proven innocent. Theoretically, a hundred-fold increase in the use of a privilege should have a hundred-fold increase in the rules to keep law officers accountable. That, of course, isn’t happening.

It’s worrisome that our nation continues to create laws upon which no real Patriot should Act.



From the Center for American Progress:

President Bush had trouble holding his own at the talks. Reporters noticed that President Bush seemed out of his element during the trip. When reporters noted to National Security Adviser Stephen Hadley that Bush didn’t talk about his trade initiatives, Hadley remarked that “You didn't hear President Bush much talk about anything.” Perhaps that explains why President Bush left during the contentious negotiations, leaving an assistant secretary of state behind to sweat out the trade talks. They ended hours later in failure.


Is that a threat or a promise...?

From a Mark Green email:

Elect me as your Governor, and the first bill I sign will be one that restores faith to our electoral system…and 2006 will be the last time you don't have to show an ID to vote.

Our Eloquent Leader...

At one point, Mr. da Silva even exhibited a map of his country, which is larger than the continental United States. "Wow! Brazil is big," Mr. Amorim quoted the American president as responding.


Sen Zein's Words of comfort on concealed carry:

Zien emphasized the need to protect citizens, saying the bill is intended to “level the playing field—the death field.” He went on to pledge that the legislation would allow only law-abiding Wisconsinites to carry weapons, suggesting that “criminals, druggies and wackos” would not be allowed to enter the necessary training courses.

He also invoked the words of Ted Nugent, saying, “If people don’t want to defend themselves, they deserve to die.”


p.s. I am being ironic. Let's get rid of this guy.

Gard Cartoon:


I'm not sure what's worse...

...that an American President needs to publicly say this, or that I'm not sure I believe him.

"Any activity we conduct is within the law. We do not torture."


Doonesbury on PhotoID

Click in headline for link...

Good Cartoon

Click in headline for link...