Reflections from the Grounded Center


More to Come, but for Now...

So, I was a jerk to post the picture that used to be here. I am sorry if I offended anyone.

I have also removed the comments since they mean very little without the original post.

Besides, come November I expect it will be considerable more blue ;^]



This is what I meant to point out in the last post...not the fact that someone from the Bush Administration didn't show up. It seems that the point got lost in the politics...what a surprise.


At Conservative Forum on Bush, Everybody's a Critic

From the Washington Post
By Dana MilbankWednesday, March 8, 2006; A02



Cut and Run!

Summary: Bill O'Reilly suggested that the United States "hand over everything to the Iraqis as fast as humanly possible" because "[t]here are so many nuts in the country -- so many crazies -- that we can't control them." O'Reilly has previously called those advocating immediate withdrawal from Iraq "pinheads" and compared them to Hitler appeasers.

During the February 20 broadcast of his nationally syndicated radio show, Bill O'Reilly suggested that the United States "hand over everything to the Iraqis as fast as humanly possible" because "[t]here are so many nuts in the country -- so many crazies -- that we can't control them." O'Reilly then claimed that the "big mistake" was actually "the crazy-people underestimation."

As Media Matters for America has documented, during a November 30, 2005, appearance on NBC's Today, O'Reilly called those advocating immediate withdrawal from Iraq "pinheads" and compared them to Hitler appeasers.

O'Reilly's comments followed his mention of a report regarding Karbala, a province in the Shiite-controlled Iraqi south. O'Reilly falsely claimed that "the mayor of Karbala ... has banned any further government dealings with the American military in his province." In fact, according to a February 20 Associated Press report, the Karbala governing council suspended contact with U.S. forces "until U.S. forces apologize" for their behavior during a recent visit to the governor's office. The Karbala provincial spokesman complained that "U.S. soldiers brought dogs inside the [governor's office] building," which was "considered an insult by the council," and "blocked roads leading to the governor's office, preventing council members and the governor from parking cars outside the building." While the AP reported the Karbala spokesman's specific complaints, O'Reilly characterized the complaints as "the mayor of Karbala" alleging that U.S. soldiers were "not behaving well."

From the February 20 broadcast of Westwood One's The Radio Factor with Bill O'Reilly:

O'REILLY: Somewhat of a disturbing report out of Iraq, and it's more important than it first appears. The governor of -- or the mayor of Karbala, which is a town in the south part of Iraq, Shiite-controlled, has banned any further government dealings with the American military in his province, saying that they're not behaving well.

Now, it's a small little thing, but I picked up on it, because here is the essential problem in Iraq. There are so many nuts in the country -- so many crazies -- that we can't control them. And I don't -- we're never gonna be able to control them. So the only solution to this is to hand over everything to the Iraqis as fast as humanly possible. Because we just can't control these crazy people. This is all over the place. And that was the big mistake about America: They didn't -- it was the crazy-people underestimation. We did not know how to deal with them -- still don't. But they're just all over the place.


"The crazy-people underestimation." Yeah, that is a real articulate way to outline the problem with the war. Nice 8th grade vocab Billy boy. And wait...they're "crazy" now, but they weren't 1 or 2 months ago when Murtha called for the withdrawl of troops? Isn't this cut and run? This guy is as weak as a liberal! He might as well just sanction the holocaust he is SOOOOO weak on National defense...just like the Democrats, right? Come on Bill...shouldn't we stick to our guns? Shouldn't we stay until victory? Shouldn't we not falter?

Flip flop, flip flop, flip flop.

What a wheelbarrow full of b*llsh*t this guy is . Who is he to call ANYONE crazy???


I Can't Resist

WASHINGTON - Vice President Dick Cheney on Wednesday accepted full blame for shooting a fellow hunter and defended his decision to not publicly disclose the accident until the following day. He called it "one of the worst days of my life."

"I'm the guy who pulled the trigger that fired the round that hit Harry," Cheney told Fox News Channel in his first public comments since the shooting Saturday in south Texas.

Cheney described seeing 78-year-old Harry Whittington fall to the ground after he pulled the trigger while aiming at a covey of quail.

"The image of him falling is something I'll never ever be able to get out of my mind," Cheney said. "I fired, and there's Harry falling. It was, I'd have to say, one of the worst days of my life at that moment."

Cheney was soft-spoken and somber during the interview with Fox's Brit Hume.

"You can talk about all of the other conditions that exist at the time but that's the bottom line and — it was not Harry's fault," he said. "You can't blame anybody else. I'm the guy who pulled the trigger and shot my friend."


Bravo, Dick.

I have to say that, although mildly entertaining, leave the guy alone. I am not a fan of his particularly, but he shot his friend in an accident while doing something together that they both loved - he is clearly not happy about it, nor did he mean to "deceive the American people." Let the guy feel bad and move on.

As much as we bitch about the gov't and Bush's Administration not worrying about what is important, and wasting money and time, etc., that is exactly what the media is doing here. Come on guys, it is surely a news item, but not 3 days worth. Let's try to concentrate on what is happening, like half of Iran burning down embassies, for example, or maybe the gynormous defecit that is going to make us all wish we were Mr. Whittington soon enough.

On that note...interesting piece here:



"I still hear people say that I should not be talking about the rights of lesbian and gay people, and I should stick to the issue of racial justice. But I hasten to remind them that Martin Luther King Jr. said 'Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.' I appeal to everyone who believes in Martin Luther King Jr.'s dream to make room at the table of brother- and sisterhood for lesbian and gay people.

Homophobia is like racism and anti-Semitism and other forms of bigotry in that it seeks to dehumanize a large group of people, to deny their humanity, their dignity and personhood. This sets the stage for further repression and violence, that spreads all too easily to victimize the next minority group.

Gays and lesbians stood up for civil rights in Montgomery, Selma, in Albany, Georgia, and St. Augustine, Florida, and many other campaigns of the civil rights movement. Many of these courageous men and women were fighting for my freedom at a time when they could find few voices for their own, and I salute their contributions."

- Coretta Scott King, in 1999 at the 25th Anniversary luncheon for the Lambda LegalDefense Fund.


"Who Cares What They Think?!"

Putin Touts Russia's Missile Capabilities

By VLADIMIR ISACHENKOV, Associated Press Writer

MOSCOW - President Vladimir Putin boasted Tuesday that Russia has missiles capable of penetrating any missile defense system, Russian news reports said.

"Russia ... has tested missile systems that no one in the world has," the ITAR-Tass, Interfax and RIA Novosti news agencies quoted him as saying at a news conference. "These missile systems don't represent a response to a missile defense system, but they are immune to that. They are hypersonic and capable of changing their flight path."

Putin said the new missiles were capable of carrying nuclear warheads. He wouldn't say whether the Russian military already had commissioned any such missiles.

He said he had shown the working principles of the missile systems to French
President Jacques Chirac during a visit to a Russian military facility.

"He knows what I'm talking about," news agencies quoted Putin as telling reporters after state-run news channels had cut their live broadcast of the news conference.

In April 2004, Chirac became the first Western leader to visit Russia's top-secret Titov space control center, which is also involved in launches of its intercontinental ballistic missiles.
Putin said that the new missiles were capable of changing both the altitude and the direction of their flight, making it impossible for an enemy to intercept them.

"A missile defense system is designed to counter missiles moving along a ballistic trajectory," Putin was quoted as saying.

Putin and other Russian officials have boasted of the new missiles in similar comments in recent years, but they haven't identified them or given any further details other than about their ability to change their flight path on approach to a target.

Most analysts viewed the earlier announcements about "hypersonic" missile systems as Moscow's response to U.S. missile defense plans.

Military analysts have said that the military had experimented with a maneuvering warhead during a missile launch several years ago, but voiced doubt about Russia's ability to deploy such weapons anytime soon.

Analysts said the new warheads, designed to zigzag on their approach to targets, could be fitted to new land-based Topol-M missiles and the prospective Bulava missiles, now under development.


OK, so maybe this is not exactly true. I am sure, considering their propensity to exaggerate and embellish, that they have not developed a super-duper weapon. But the fact that it is a priority to evade our defenses, and something about which they are holding press conferences should not only be mildly frightening to Americans, but a reassertion of the fact that we are not an island.

You can feel however you want about France - God knows I am not the biggest fan - but the fact that they are touring Russia's nuclear facilities is not only significant, but given the way the French and the rest of Europe feel about our nation it may an indicator of the future of our "alliances." I only hope that Poland, Italy and Bulgaria, our new European allies, can hook us up....oh wait, it soon to be only Bulgaria.

You can only bully for so long before the schoolyard geeks gang up and beat the crap out of you.