Liberal Oasis
HOME | SEARCH | ARCHIVES | MANIFESTO | SOAPBOX
BE A LIBERALOASIS E-PATRIOT -- GIVE TO THE DEMS -- CURRENT TOTAL: $1530
BOOK OF THE MONTH: "THE GREAT UNRAVELING" | KRUGMAN INTERVIEW
ORDER "AL-QAEDA" | BURKE INTERVIEW
PAST INTERVIEWS -- BLUMENTHAL DEAN PALAST
DONATE TO THE OASIS | SHOP THE OASIS | CONTACT THE OASIS

GET TRUTH

Alternet

American Prospect

Black Commentator

Consortium News

Grist

In These Times

Intervention

Mother Jones

Ms.

The Nation

The New Republic

The Progressive

Progressive Populist

Salon

Tom Paine

Utne

Washington Monthly

GET BLOGGED

Altercation

Bartcop

Body and Soul

Joe Conason

Counterspin

Daily Kos

Eschaton

Nathan Newman

Ruminate This

The Sideshow

Talk Left

Talking Points Memo

Tapped

Terminus

Thinking It Through

GET ACTIVE

ActNow!

The Email Activist

MoveOn

True Majority

GET COMMUNITY

Al Gore Democrats

Democratic Underground

Democrats.com

Institute for Global Communications

Smirking Chimp

GET INSIDE THE SYSTEM

First Read

The Hill

The Note

Open Secrets

Political Wire

Romenesko

GET LEGISLATION

Write your U.S. Rep

Write your Senator

Or call Congress
202-224-3121

GET WONKY

Applied Research Center

Center for Policy Alternatives

Commonweal Institute

Economic Policy Institute

Institute for Policy Studies

Institute for Women's Policy Research

Moving Ideas Network

NJ Policy Perspective

OMB Watch

GET A BUDGET

Center on Budget and Policy Priorities

Concord Coalition

National Priorities Project

GET RURAL

Center for Applied Rural Innovation

Center for Rural Affairs

Center for Rural Development

Center for Rural Strategies

Center for Rural Studies

GET MEDIA ANALYSIS

Daily Howler

FAIR

Lying Media Bastards

Media Study

Media Whores Online

Media Transparency

PR Watch

Take Back The Media

TV News Lies

We Want The Airwaves

GET POLLS

Democracy Corps

Polling Report

Prof. Pollkatz

Public Opinion Watch

GET MORE BLOGGED

Antic Muse

BusyBusyBusy

Donkey Rising

Kicking Ass

MaxSpeak

Ms. Musings

onegoodmove

Pacific Views

Greg Palast

Political Aims

Reading & Writing

Road To Surfdom

Rittenhouse Review

Skippy

Soundbitten

TBogg

GET LOCAL

SF Bay Guardian

Texas Observer

Village Voice

WHO NEEDS DRUDGE

Antiwarmonger

BuzzFlash

Common Dreams

Cursor

Free Speech News

Make Them Accountable

Narco News

The Screed

Smudge Report

Truthout

Unknown News

USNewsLink

Working For Change

GET BUSH

AWOL Bush

Bushwatch

Bush Occupation

DubyaDubya.net

DubyaSpeak

GWBush.com

GWBush04.com

Hated

Peace Pretzel

Uproot Bush

Whitehouse.org

GET JUDGES

Alliance For Justice

American Constitution Society

Independent Judiciary

GET FOREIGN POLICY

Brookings Institution

Carnegie Endowment

Carter Center

Center for Defense Information

Fourth Freedom Forum

Henry L. Stimson Center

9-11 Families for Peaceful Tomorrows

Peace Action

Traprock Peace Center

Veterans Against the Iraq War

Veterans For Common Sense

World Policy Institute

GET HOMELAND SECURITY

Century Foundation

GET IRAQ

Back To Iraq 2.0

Baghdad Burning

Iraq Body Count

Iraq Today

Where Is Raed?

GET FREEDOM

Amnesty International

Human Rights Watch

GET GROUP BLOGGED

Corrente

Crooked Timber

Open Source Politics

GET LIFE WITHOUT PAROLE

Death Penalty Information Center

National Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty

FIGHT CRIME

Fortune Society

National Center on Institutions & Alternatives

Sentencing Project

GET LEFT

Bear Left

Blog Left

Lean Left

The Left Coaster

Left Is Right

Left Leaner

The Lefty Directory

So Far, So Left

We're Left, They're Wrong

GET META-BLOGGED

Best of the Blogs

Progressive Gold

GET GOOD GOVT

Center for Public Integrity

CitizenWorks

Common Cause

Public Citizen

GET STILL MORE BLOGGED

The Agonist

The Agora

Alas, A Blog

Archpundit

Bloviator

Coherence Theory
of Truth

Green[e]house Effect

Groupthink Central

Hullabaloo

Juan Cole

Liquid List

Mike Hersh

Not Geniuses

Oliver Willis

Orcinus

Pandagon

Seeing The Forest

Semi-Daily Journal

Untelevised

Warblogging

GET GREEN

Climate Ark

The Detroit Project

Environmental Defense

Environmental Media Services

Natural Resources Defense Council

Sierra Club

What Would Jesus Drive?

GET STATEHOOD

DC Vote

GET LAW BLOGGED

Balkinization

Is That Legal?

Lessig Blog

GET GUN CONTROL

Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence

Violence Policy Center

GET LOCAL BLOGS

Blog St. Louis (MO)

Off The Kuff (TX)

People's Republic
of Seabrook (TX)

Politics in the Zeros (CA)

Scoobie Davis (Hollywood)

South Knox
Bubba (TN)

To The Barricades (NE)

Twin Cities Babelogue (MN)

Wyeth Wire (SC)

STOP SCREWING THE POOR

Class Struggle

Living Wage Resource Center

National Campaign for Jobs and Income Support

National Coalition Against Legalized Gambling

Welfare Information Network

GET GLOBALI-
ZATION

Capital Ownership Group

50 Years Is Enough

Reclaim Democracy

GET RETIREMENT SECURITY

AARP

Nat'l Cmte to Preserve Social Security & Medicare

Social Security Network

GET HOLLYWOOD

The Creative Coalition

GETTIN' BLOGGY WITH IT

A Side Note

Ain'tNoBadDude

American Samizdat

The Apple Coda

Arms and the Man

Blue Streak

CalPundit

Confined Space

Daily Brew

Easter Lemming

Electrolite

Free Pie

Gamers Nook

Hellblazer

The Hamster

Hauser Report

Hegemoney

HugoZoom

Idols Of The Marketplace

Interesting Times

Into the Breach

Joe Kenehan

Let The Record Show

Liberal Desert

Long Story; Short Pier

Mark A.R. Kleiman

Mfinley

Mousemusings

Noosphere Blues

Peace-Alive

Political Strategy

Project For a New Century of Freedom

Public Nuisance

Random Thoughts

Roger Ailes

Rushlimbaughtomy

Shadow of the Hegemon

Shiny Blue Grasshopper

Shock and Awe

Simon Templar

Suburban Guerrilla

T.C. Mits

The Talent Show

The Talking Dog

Testify

Tristero

An Unenviable Situation

Uggabugga

Uppity Negro

Wampum

Wellstone Cornerstone

Matt Yglesias

Zizka

GET IT ALL

eRiposte

GET OUT OF THE OASIS

The Flaming Moderate

Leading With The Left
The daily view from the oasis

October 3, 2003 PERMALINK
Out of Spin
Almost
(posted Oct. 3 1:15 AM ET)

In April, LiberalOasis argued that if there were no WMD, the Bushies would plant the evidence.

In July, LO conceded that if they were going to plant evidence, they would have done it already. But David Kay, who was sent to head up the search, could exaggerate whatever shreds of evidence he found.

Yesterday, Congress received Kay‚s preliminary report.

Did he exaggerate? Kinda sorta.

To read his verbatim testimony, it almost seems like he tried to exaggerate it, but just had so little to work with.

He tried to explain why he was empty-handed by stressing how WMD evidence is easy to hide, key people have left the country, people are shooting at his staff, Iraq‚s really big, he needs more time, blah blah blah.

And he also tried to be optimistic.

For example, he says his team has „begun to unravel a clandestine network of laboratories and facilitiesš and ominously notes that it „was never declared to the UN and was previously unknown.š

So he got the goods? Well, no.

Said Kay, „We are still working on determining the extent to which this network was tied to large-scale military efforts or BW [biological warfare] terror weapons.š

Obviously, this approach didn‚t work.

Congresspeople on both sides of the aisle weren‚t buying. The media were unimpressed.

(NBC Nightly News aired this unflattering exchange:

REPORTER: Have you found any weapons of mass destruction?

KAY: I barely found lunch.)

And even Don Rumsfeld is starting to lose faith:

It‚s not clear that [the intelligence] was off by a little bit or a mile at this stage.

If it is off by a lot, that will be unfortunate, and then we‚ll know that.

Translation: Oh, well. We‚ll get it right on the next war.

So the Establishment is starting to rub its eyes and realize that this whole exercise was a bloody tragic multi-billion dollar farce.

In turn, the GOP needs some new spin, so the entire rationale for the Bush presidency doesn‚t completely disintegrate.

On CNN‚s Crossfire yesterday, Tucker Carlson appeared to be test-running the latest defense:

If this is true, in this report, when we finally see what is in it. And it turns out there were no weapons of mass destruction in Iraq.

That means the Bush administration was wrong, Hillary Clinton was wrong, Hans Blix was wrong, Jacques Chirac was wrong.

It's a big deal. And they ought to admit it.

For the moment, forget about the factual accuracy regarding what each person believed.

The overall message from Carlson is clear:

Pretty much everybody, pro-war and anti-war. thought Saddam had WMD. So don‚t go blaming the pro-war folks for this.

Of course, this completely ignores a key point of the argument against pre-emptive war.

It‚s one thing to think a rogue state has WMD. It‚s another to know it.

And that‚s what liberals were demanding before the war: proof.

A hunch doesn‚t cut it when you‚re talking about war.

Those calls grew louder once the inspectors went back in, and couldn‚t find anything significant.

Now, while Washington debates whether this was an intelligence failure or intelligence manipulation (the truth is probably some of both), there‚s a larger lesson that should be learned.

Since intelligence is not perfect by its nature, perhaps it shouldn‚t be used as the sole justification for invading sovereign nations, killing thousands of civilians and sacrificing American soldiers.

*** Share your thoughts at The LiberalOasis Soapbox ***

October 2, 2003 PERMALINK
Who Loves Special Counsels?
John Ashcroft Does
(posted Oct. 1 8:45 PM ET)
(minor edit Oct. 1 11:45 PM ET)

The hot topic continues to be if Attorney General John Ashcroft should appoint a special counsel to head up the investigation of The Leak.

68% of America says yes.

Well, how does John Ashcroft feel about it?

Let‚s go to the videotape. October 4, 1997. CNN‚s „Evans & Novak.š

(Robert Novak was off that day, sorry ironists).

The issue was allegations of fundraising violations by Al Gore:

ASHCROFT: The truth of the matter is that if the law's been violated, we should be able to ascertain that.

We can, if we have an independent person without a conflict of interest∑

ROWLAND EVANS: ∑The attorney general has shaved down all the allegations that Vice President Gore apparently down to one single allegation -- which telephone he used to make these fundraising calls from.

Do you really think that alone is worthy of a special prosecutor?

ASHCROFT: ∑you know, a single allegation can be most worthy of a special prosecutor.

If you're abusing government property, if you're abusing your status in office, it can be a single fact that makes the difference on that.

So my own view is that there are plenty of things which should have caused [Attorney General Janet Reno], a long time ago, to appoint a special prosecutor, an independent investigator.

We asked for that on March the 13th of this year in letters from Republican members on the Judiciary Committee. And she's in a bad position∑

∑The man who signs her check is the man that she's investigating, and she hasn't been very aggressive about it.

Let‚s review.

Ashcroft is not an „independent person without a conflict of interest.š

A potential suspect, Karl Rove, once worked for Ashcroft, and „the man who signs [his] checkš is someone he‚s investigating.

And we have „a single allegationš of „abusing [one‚s] status in office.š

So by Ashcroft‚s own standard, he cannot „ascertainš „if the law‚s been violated.š

Now, it‚s still LiberalOasis‚ take (most certainly a minority one among liberals) that it is not a given that Ashcroft would cover up White House wrongdoing.

And that Ashcroft, as an ambitious politician who is not especially close to Bush, his aggressiveness would depend on how Beltway Republicans were treating the scandal.

Furthermore, it still looks to LO that a lot of GOPers have their finger in the wind, and last evening‚s W. Post poll shows the wind in Bush‚s face.

But since Ashcroft is on record about when special counsels should be appointed, reporters need to ask him:

Will he be following his own standards in handling this investigation?

*** Share your thoughts at The LiberalOasis Soapbox ***

October 1, 2003 PERMALINK
Where's the GOP?
Calling Frist, DeLay, Hastert...
(posted Oct. 1 1:15 AM ET)

The general view inside the White House among senior staff is that this is going to create a few rocky political days, that it's mainly the Democrats pushing it, and that if all the Republicans stay on board, the story goes away," said a Republican worker with close ties to the White House.
-- NY Times, 10/1/03

As of now, that‚s more a cry for help than a statement of confidence.

Because the Republicans are not „on boardš yet.

In Day 2 of the full-blown phase of The Leak, nearly all GOP politicians continued to lay low and let Bush defend himself.

Bush had only one defender hit the circuit, RNC Chair Ed Gillespie, who appeared at least on CNN‚s Inside Politics, MSNBC‚s Hardball and ABC‚s World News Tonight.

(His basic message: Justice Dept. investigation, great! Amb. Joe Wilson, Dem party hack! By the way, we don‚t even know if anything happened.)

And the only elected GOP official who spoke out yesterday, to LiberalOasis‚ knowledge, was Sen. Mitch McConnell, also on Hardball.

Gillespie‚s and McConnell‚s talking points were not fully coordinated, in particular on the question of a special counsel.

On CNN, Gillespie said:

∑in the past, we've seen many of the same Democratic members of Congress who have talked about, „We don't need outside counsels. We don't need special counsels.š

And, in fact, opposed an independent counsel act. All of a sudden now [they say], „Oh, we ought to have one of those.š And it's pure politics.

While McConnell indicated that a special counsel wouldn‚t be so bad:

The career professionals down at the Justice Department, who are incorruptible and not subject to being manipulated by either side, are in the process of initiating this investigation∑

∑and if the bureaucrats down there∑believe that a special counsel is warranted, they will recommend that to the Attorney General.

And I don‚t have a doubt in my mind that he will go along with it∑

Further, Gillespie is intentionally blurring the facts by using „independent counselš and „special counselš interchangeably. They‚re different.

The independent counsel law, which expired in 1999, allowed for counsels who were appointing, not by the Attorney General, by a three-judge panel. And they had unlimited funding (a big reason why the law was scrapped.)

A special counsel, the only current option, would be appointed by the Attorney General and would serve at his pleasure.

Despite the discrepancy on that issue, there is one thing that both of them did. Or, more accurately, did not do.

Neither of them truly defended the White House. Neither insisted that there was no wrongdoing at high levels of the Administration.

That would indicate they expect someone‚s going to take a fall, and they don‚t want to dirty themselves in the process.

In fact, on Fox News‚ Special Report, Bill Kristol, while giving the caveat „if someone did [this]š, went as far as to say:

∑someone thinking this through now has to realize this is going to come out∑

∑I wouldn‚t be surprised to see a resignation in the next few days.

Though in LO‚s view, with the possibility of a 10-year jail sentence, a pre-emptive resignation would seem hard to quickly engineer.

(Atrios spots other conservatives breaking from Bush.)

Bush may be able to get more GOPers to join in the smears of Wilson that Gillespie was spreading on all of his appearances.

But that‚s a sideshow, trying to mitigate damage, not eliminate it.

It won‚t stop the media frenzy of a „criminal investigation.š

Especially since there aren‚t yet any Republicans willing to fully get „on boardš and make the case that the investigation won't bag big White House game.

And that may be because there isn‚t much of a case to be made.

(UPDATE 10/1/03 9 AM ET -- The NY Times today quotes House Majority Leader Tom DeLay, Rep. Peter King and Sen. John McCain about The Leak.

All make mild defenses of the White House, but no one argues that no top official is guilty.)

QUICK HIT

While yesterday, LiberalOasis argued that an Ashcroft investigation doesn‚t automatically mean the „fix is in,š the DNC blog Kicking Ass is spotting some questionable Ashcroft activity in the early stages.

*** Share your thoughts at The LiberalOasis Soapbox ***

September 30, 2003 PERMALINK
Is the GOP United?
(posted Sept. 30 1 AM ET)

The best thing to do is to have a very thorough and very fast investigation, find out what happened.

And, if what we think may have happened did happen, identify and fire and prosecute those people.

If the best way to get it done well and get it done fast is to turn it over to an independent counsel, then I say turn it over to an independent counsel.
-- Victoria Clarke, Fmr. Bush Pentagon Spokeswoman
CNN, Paula Zahn Now, 9/29/03

You may recall that it was George Stephanopoulos, recently departed from the White House, who was the first Dem to say „impeachmentš following the Monica revelation.

That jacked up the frenzy level, giving the removal of the president plausibility in the eyes of the media.

Clarke‚s statement on The Leak may not get the same level of attention. But it is just as relevant.

It is an indicator that some Republicans will not be willing to fall on the sword for Bush at the expense of national security principles.

Similarly, on CNN‚s Crossfire, the GOP wasn‚t even organized enough (or committed enough) to send a polished spokesperson to defend the Administration.

Instead, backbencher congressman Jack Kingston gave a limp defense:

PAUL BEGALA: You supported an independent counsel when the Democratic agriculture secretary got football tickets for free.

Surely, as a man of integrity, which you are, you will support an independent investigation of this alleged treason.

KINGSTON: Paul, if the case moves in that direction, then I think you will see something like that on a bipartisan basis.

But at this point that we're at right now, we don't know exactly what her role is∑

∑If it becomes apparent that maybe the Democrat fears that Ashcroft isn't going to be thorough enough and there's evidence to say this is a big, big cover-up, this is a Bush problem, then we will take it from there.

But at this point, that's where we are yet.

You can be sure those messages were not handcrafted by the White House or the RNC.

This is not to say there isn‚t a defense happening in some corners.

The National Review ran two pieces yesterday trying to discredit Amb. Joe Wilson.

And Rush Limbaugh used their work to push the same point Ų all ignoring the charges of illegality by the Bushies.

(The Weekly Standard, at this writing, seems to be holding back, posting no pieces on this yesterday. Though its Executive Editor, Fred Barnes, was giving the National Review line on Fox News yesterday)

But we‚re not hearing top elected GOP officials take this route yet. In fact, we haven‚t heard from top GOPers at all.

This doesn‚t appear to be a unified front.

And if that dynamic remains, and the GOP is split or hesitant, that will put Attorney General John Ashcroft in an interesting position.

Many Dems are calling for a „special counsel,š arguing Ashcroft can‚t be trusted to conduct a fair investigation.

But under the rules, a special counsel would report to him anyway.

Unless he recuses himself for conflict of interest purposes (like he did regarding Enron), he can‚t be extricated from the process.

Does that mean the fix is in? Not necessarily.

Yes, he is a disaster on civil liberties, and was a loathsome right-wing Senator.

But he is not especially tight with Bush.

He has had „tenuous relationsš with Bush at times, and was not Bush‚s first choice for the job.

And if there are enough GOPers that are repulsed (a la Poppy Bush) by the outing of a CIA official, Ashcroft may not feel pressured to conduct a phony investigation.

In fact, he may find it politically advantageous for himself to show off some independence.

This is not to say that Ashcroft is so decent and reputable that he wouldn‚t cover for Bush. He may well might.

But it will hinge upon how his fellow Washington GOPers react over the next few days.

If more and more people sound like Victoria Clarke, Bush will lose control over this process, and heads will likely roll.

*** Share your thoughts at The LiberalOasis Soapbox ***

September 29, 2003 PERMALINK
The Sunday Talkshow Breakdown
A weekly feature of LiberalOasis
(posted Sept. 29 12:30 AM ET)

The double scoop from the Sunday W. Post Ų the Justice Dept. investigation of the White House illegally naming a CIA operative, and the House investigation of the Iraq intel failure Ų shook up the shows.

As a result, Condi Rice and Colin Powell Ų previously scheduled to hit most shows Ų faced questioning that was tougher than usual.

In general, hosts let them get away with recycled talking points.

But in a twist, Meet the Press‚ Tim Russert was the fiercest of them all, while This Week‚s George Stephanopoulos flinched.

Stephanopoulos faced Powell, who was ripe for a pummeling.

This past week, a Feb. ‚01 Powell quote resurfaced:

[Saddam Hussein] has not developed any significant capability with respect to weapons of mass destruction.

He is unable to project conventional power against his neighbors.

Soon after that, the NY Times recounted an exchange between Powell and its editorial board:

∑Asked whether Americans would have supported this war if weapons of mass destruction had not been at issue, Mr. Powell said the question was too hypothetical to answer.

Asked if he, personally, would have supported it, he smiled, thrust his hand out and said, "It was good to meet you."

But Stephanopoulos (unlike his ABC colleague Diane Sawyer earlier in the week) completely neglected to raise the ‚01 quote in the interview.

And while his interview partner George Will brought up the NYT incident, without coupling it with Powell‚s ‚01 admission, it was easy to duck.

Powell said, unchallenged:

It was a question being asked as I was walking out of the room.

Stephanopoulos did ask Powell about the Iraq intel revelation.

The W. Post reported:

Leaders of the House intelligence committee have criticized the U.S. intelligence community for using largely outdated, "circumstantial" and "fragmentary" information with "too many uncertainties" to conclude that Iraq had weapons of mass destruction and ties to al Qaeda∑

But Powell, instead of addressing the substance of the letter, just dismissed it, and shifted to their familiar line of argument:

Saddam‚s done lots of bad things, so it was reasonable to go to war assuming he did this bad thing.

Specifically, Powell said:

Two weeks ago today, I was in Halabja [where] in March of 1988, Saddam Hussein gassed the people with VX, with sarin, nerve agents, and it killed 5,000 people in one day; that was 15 years ago.

Now, if you want to believe that he suddenly gave up that weapon and had no further interest in those sorts of weapons, whether it be chemical, biological or nuclear, then I think you're -- it's a bit naēve to believe that.

But of course, there are other explanations that don‚t rely on Saddam suddenly becoming a nice guy.

Stephanopoulos should know.

He raised one theory while questioning Don Rumsfeld back in July -- that Saddam thought it would show weakness if people knew he had no WMD.

The current Time magazine also suggests Saddam might have been bluffing, that he was duped by his own scientists, and that not everything destroyed is accounted for because of sloppy record-keeping.

Yet Stephanopoulos didn‚t challenge Powell on any of these scenarios.

(Over at CNN, Judy Woodruff was a little tougher on Powell regarding his ‚01 quote, but also let Powell off without raising other scenarios why no one can find WMD).

In fairness to Stephanopoulos, he spent more of his time pressing Powell on the $87B request and the inability to get foreign assistance.

Still, he inexcusably missed some big openings.

Meanwhile across town, Russert was relentless (if not quite merciless) with Condi Rice.

He piled the missing David Kay report on top of Powell‚s ‚01 quote and the House intel debunking, then asked pointedly:

Was the premise of the war based on faulty or hyped intelligence?

And after the familiar resuscitation of talking points, Russert simply rebutted:

What if the intelligence was just plain wrong?

He didn‚t stop. Proclaiming that „the administration‚s credibility is on the line,š he did a full-blown revisiting of the „16 wordsš in the January State of the Union.

He aired Rice‚s June defense, on MTP, that „no one in our circles knew that there were doubts and suspicionsš about the Niger allegation.

Then Russert said flatly, „that has proven to be wrong,š noting that her deputy acknowledged getting two CIA memos disputing the allegation in Oct. ő02, and that Condi herself received one of them.

Condi‚s retort? By January, everybody forgot about the Oct. memos, and Condi‚s not even sure she read hers. Therefore:

We are trying to put now in place methods so you don‚t have to be dependent on people‚s memories for something like that.

Well, that‚s a relief.

Russert also brought up the White House leaks exposing an undercover CIA agent -- broken earlier by MSNBC, but advanced significantly by the W. Post yesterday.

In turn, Russert succeeded in embarrassing Rice, who wouldn‚t say much more than it‚s „up to the Justice Departmentš what happens next.

However, it was Tony Snow on Fox News Sunday that did the most probing.

And Condi danced and danced and danced:

SNOW: Well, when the story came out∑was it known in the White House that she was a CIA employee?

RICE: I'm not going to go into this, Tony, because the problem here is this has been referred to the Justice Department∑

SNOW: Well, but it is revealing, or it's important to figure out what the White House reaction was at the time.

For years and years and years, for instance, the administrations chased Phillip Agee all around the globe because he had revealed the name of a CIA officer. This is a grave offense∑

∑did the White House take any action, back then in June, when the story appeared?

RICE: Well, it was well known that the president of the United States does not expect the White House to get involved in such things∑

SNOW: But there was nobody at the White House at the time who was saying, "Oh, we've got a problem here"?

RICE: Tony, I don't remember any such conversation∑

[Just like how she doesn‚t remember the CIA Niger memo!]

SNOW: Do you think the White House should release phone logs, if necessary, to figure out who talked to whom?

RICE: Tony, as a matter of course, when the Justice Department is looking into something, of course the White House cooperates.

They should know about phone logs.

It took the White House about 24 hours to tell the neocon Weekly Standard that Wesley Clark never called Karl Rove.

This could get interesting∑

*** Share your thoughts at The LiberalOasis Soapbox ***

The Sandbox
Guest Humor Column by Alexander Pierre Luboknovich

NEWSFLASH
After a Storm, Francophiles Return to McDonalds

SHEEPSHEAD BAY, N.Y., Sept. 27 ų In a move rarely seen in U.S. culture, Americans are admitting their impropriety, and apologizing to the French.

„I never thought I‚d say this,š said Peter Ianova, of Dyker Heights, „but they were right.š

As Mr. Ianova, and his three children stood on line at a Sheepshead Bay McDonald‚s, many on line shared similar views.

„Yeah, the fucking French fries! Yeah, they‚re called liberty fries or sumptin, right,š a man in his late 30‚s pondered. „I shouldn‚t be eatin‚ that shit anyway. I‚m on my way to Bally‚s.š

„There‚s lots a new restaurants here now on Emmons [Avenue]. Thai restaurants with Taiwanese foods, Turkish joints, why we gotta always go to McDonald‚s,š offered Cindy Carlucci. „Billy, get the fuck off a that lady!š

The sentiment is shared throughout the region, and perhaps the country itself.

„Even though they didn‚t change the name to freedom fries here, they were nice about it. If you ordered őfreedom fries‚ they didn‚t look at you like you were an idiot. They knew what you meant,š said Ms. Carlucci.

Many McDonald‚s customers, who had previously called for the chain to rename their fried potatoes, have come full circle back to their original Francophile stance.

„My wife and I, God bless her, have been fortunate enough to travel to Paris four times, and we were planning a fifth trip next year,š said Peter Davidowitz, a former High School Physics teacher.

„But after they kept up their whining, yeah, two cheeseburgers deluxe, one apple pie, one McSundae... thanks, how much?,š added Davidowitz.

But not everyone is reverting to the prior vocabulary.

„The fact of the matter is, they were right, but only because they lucked out,š Rico Betancourt reported, with a smile. „Like the Cowboys the other Monday night. Fuckin‚ special teams! Unbelievable! Parcells does look like a lesbo!š

Later, in the men‚s room, Mr. Betancourt conferred that he would continue turning down French fries, so long as they were called such.

„If they‚re called French fries, I don‚t want them. If they‚re free, take them back. Unless they‚re calling them freedom fries, I don‚t want none of that. They can shove the French fries up their dirty armpits.š Mr. Betancourt left the bathroom without washing his hands.

„Nowadays, everyone is dying over there,š reported Lucille Quinn, a homemaker. „There‚s not even enough bugle players for the funerals anymore, and the French predicted it. Now there‚s only recorded sounds. Recorded, distant sounds.š

„Hey, what do the United States of America and McDonald‚s have in common?,š opined Mr. Betancourt as he discarded his refuse, „They both have a clown named Ronald!š

„No, you idiot,š added Ms. Carlucci, „that only made sense when Reagan was the President you fucking birdbrain!š

„Oh shit! I finally just got it,š added Betancourt.

For more Luboknovich, check out his blog.

**************

REVIEWS
What people are saying about LiberalOasis

"Among the best ways to [pay close attention to the grass roots] is logging onto Web sites like Liberal Oasis."
Joe Conason

"indispensable"
Tapped

"something interesting"
Eric Alterman

"unsurpassed political commentary"
P.L.A.

"one of my many must-read-every-day sites"
Terminus

"it's what our site would be like [if we had] more time"
Bear Left

"smart new weblog for us lefties"
Reading & Writing

"always-excellent"
Groupthink Central

"consistently interesting"
Body and Soul

"If you're one of the few who has not been to Liberal Oasis, get on over there for great blogging, sharp humor and activism"
Ruminate This

"It's like a freakin' candy store!"
Chernovog's Journal

"Liberal Oasis is so good I ought to print it out and mail it to my Senators."
The Sideshow

"Excellent commentary"
The Guy James Show

July 26, 2002
"Political Site of the Day"
AboutPolitics.com

"Left-wing twits"
Right-thinking.com

"The parallel dimension in which supporters of Stalin, Hitler, Saddam Hussein and various and sundry other shitheels live."
The Anti-Idiotarian Rottweiler

July 29, 2002
"The Many Faces of Satan© Website of the Week"
Patriotist.com

GET HUMOR

The Boondocks

The Cougarstein Ramble

Get Your War On

Mark Fiore

Political Strikes

Ted Rall

This Modern World

Tom the Dancing Bug

GET A JOB

Idealist

Opportunity Knocks

GET ART

Ginger Young Gallery

GET MUSIC

Folkweb

Rapstation

WomanRock

GET FOOD

Eat Wild

EcoFriendly Foods

Get Vegan

Grassland Beef

Homestead Healthy Foods

Lasater Grasslands Beef

GET TRANS FATS

Ban Trans Fats

Boycott Hydrogenation

GET COFFEE

Coffee Traders

Counter Culture Coffee

Sacred Grounds

GET MORE HUMOR

Bean Magazine

Betty Bowers

Bloom County

Foundation for a Patriotic America

Grand Old Party

MadKane

Michael Moore

Nothing Like The Truth

Psyclops

The Specious Report

Tammy Faye Starlite

GET BRITISH HUMOR

Lord Bonkers Diary

Private Eye

Viz

GET MEDIA(?)

Faux News Channel

Republican Press

PLAY A GAME

Life as a Blackman

BUY STUFF...

Agitproperties

EcoMall

Global Exchange

Green Pages

Green People

Hybrid Car Dealers

Real Goods

Responsible Shopper

...OR DON'T

AdBusters

Boycott Action News

Buy Nothing Day

GET OFF THE GRID

Back Home

Building Green

Home Power

Off-Grid Living

Solar Panels for Energy

Source for Renewable Energy

GET FUNDING

Ford Foundation

Pew Charitable Trusts

Soros Foundation

Tides Foundation

GET PR

Communication Works

Fenton Communications

Hauser Group

McKinney & Assoc.

The SPIN Project

Spitfire Strategies

GET CAPITAL GAINS

Calvert Foundation

Domini Social Investments

Greenmoney Journal

Parnassus Investments

GET UNIONIZED

AFL-CIO

SEIU

UAW

GET LAID SAFELY

Advocates for Youth

Nat'l Campaign to Prevent Teen Pregnancy

Planned Parenthood

Scarleteen

GET REPRO CHOICE

Center for Reproductive Law & Policy

NARAL Pro-Choice America

GET ABORTION

National Network of Abortion Funds

GET HAPPY ANIMALS

Alley Cat Allies

Animal Rescue Site

ASPCA

Best Friends

Stop Declaw

Wildlife Waystation

GET GOD

American Islamic Congress

The Ba'hai Faith

Buddhist Peace Fellowship

Catholic Worker

Center for Progressive Christianity

Center for the Study of Islam and Democracy

Interfaith Alliance

Liberals Like Christ

Noble Causes

The Religious Left

The Right Christians

Shalom Center

Sojourners

Tikkun

Unitarian Universalists

United Church of Christ

Universal Life Church

GET GODLESS

American Atheists

Infidels

GET ANN COULTER

Ann Coulter Is a Bitch

Anti-Coulter

CoulterWatch

Dr. Limerick's Slannder

GET EQUALITY

American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee

Anti-Defamation League

Human Rights Campaign

NAACP

Nat'l Conf. for Community and Justice

National Council of La Raza

National Urban League

NOW

GET JUSTICE

ACLU

Brennan Center for Justice

EarthJustice

Lambda Legal Defense

Mexican American Legal Defense

NAACP Legal Defense

National Asian Pacific American Legal Consortium

Native American Rights Fund

NOW Legal Defense

Southern Poverty Law Center

GET RADIO

AnShell Media

Bush Recession Radio

Democracy Now

Free Speech Radio

Guy James

i.e. America Radio

Meria Heller

Mike Malloy

New Black City

Radio Free Exile

Radio Left

Radio Nation

Randi Rhodes

Ski Anderson

Peter Werbe

GET AMERICAN

Americans for Democratic Action

Campaign for America's Future

Americans United for the Separation of Church and State

People For the American Way

GET SOMEONE ELECTED

Democratic National Committee

Emily's List

MoveOn.org PAC

Progressive Majority

21st Century Democrats

Young Democratic Candidates Network

GET PRESIDENTIAL

Wesley Clark

Howard Dean

John Edwards

Dick Gephardt

Al Gore

Bob Graham

John Kerry

Dennis Kucinich

Joe Lieberman

Carol Moseley Braun

Al Sharpton

GET PRESIDENTIAL BLOGS

Dem Watch

Wesley Clark Weblog

Dean Nation

Howard Dean in 2004 (R. Klau)

Mousepads, Shoe Leather and Hope

One Father for Dean

RI for Dean

John Edwards News Network

Gephardt Grassroots

See Dick Win

CT for Kerry

John Kerry's Unofficial Blog

Dennis Kucinich Blog & News

Texans For Joe

GET ORGANIZED

Dem Party Meetup

Clark Meetup

Dean Meetup

Edwards Meetup

Gephardt Meetup

Gore Meetup

Graham Meetup

Kerry Meetup

Lieberman Meetup

Moseley Braun Meetup

Sharpton Meetup

GET VPs?

Max Baucus

Evan Bayh

Joe Biden

Bill Bradley

Tom Daschle

Gray Davis

Richard Durbin

Russ Feingold

Dianne Feinstein

Gary Hart

Mary Landrieu

John Lewis

Gary Locke

John McCain

Jim McGreevey

Bob Menendez

Janet Napolitano

Nancy Pelosi

Bill Richardson

Kathleen Sebelius

Tom Vilsack

Mark Warner

HOME | SEARCH | ARCHIVES | MANIFESTO | SOAPBOX
DONATE TO THE OASIS | SHOP THE OASIS | CONTACT THE OASIS

Liberal Oasis Logo Design: Ed Kim | Advice and Assistance: LuckyDave, Gina-Louise Sciarra and Maya Voskoboynikov | Special Thanks to Eric Alterman, Bartcop, Hated.com, MediaWhoresOnline and Smirking Chimp for their early cybersupport