“Rep. Randy ‘Duke’ Cunningham (R-Calif.) will soon relinquish many of his properties and his freedom after pleading guilty to charges of fraud and conspiracy, but he will keep his government pension and could retain the privileges enjoyed by other former members of Congress,” the Hill reports.
Former Senator Tom Daschle hosts former FEMA director James Lee Witt in the first in a series of Conversations with Daschle. Tonight’s topic is Disaster Recovery in the Wake of Katrina. Watch it live at 7:00 pm ET. Click here to submit a question.
The reality in Iraq, as the L.A. Times reported this morning, is that the U.S. military is distributing misleading “covert propaganda” in Iraqi media outlets:
As part of an information offensive in Iraq, the U.S. military is secretly paying Iraqi newspapers to publish stories written by American troops in an effort to burnish the image of the U.S. mission in Iraq. … The storyboards, several of which were obtained by The Times, read more like press releases than news stories. They often contain anonymous quotes from U.S. military officials; it is unclear whether the quotes are authentic. “Absolute truth was not an essential element of these stories,” said the senior military official who spent this year in Iraq.
Of course, in the public relations-driven “National Strategy for Victory in Iraq,” the Bush administration condemns the exact same behavior:
Isolate enemy elements from those who can be won over to the political process by countering false propaganda and demonstrating to all Iraqis that they have a stake in a democratic Iraq [National Strategy for Victory in Iraq, 11/30/05]
It’s Bush’s Iraq strategy vs. Bush’s PR strategy.
Before our mission in Iraq is accomplished, there will be tough days ahead.
Bush, May 2003:
On Thursday, I visited the USS Abraham Lincoln, now headed home after the longest carrier deployment in recent history. I delivered good news to the men and women who fought in the cause of freedom: their mission is complete and major combat operations in Iraq have ended.
has just endorsed Rep. John Murtha’s redeployment plan for Iraq.
Another “educational” conservative band, Junkyard Prophet, has been busy touring high schools across the country. But these rockers aren’t stickin’ it to the man — they’re being funded by him. The band apparently receives about $1500 per appearance — an amount that several schools have paid out of their drug-free schools funding from the Department of Education. (Junkyard Prophet says it helps students resist peer pressure and “understand the value and beauty of the moral absolutes on which their country was founded.”)
Our sister site, CampusProgress, has details:
The Des Moines Register reported that after one 2004 performance, Junkyard Prophet handed out CDs to a few random students that bore this message: “the death sentence [is] on you due to your sins! The very evidence of your sin will be your death! It is appointed to you to die and after that you will be judged according to your ways! His judgment is so thorough every thought will be brought to the light. When all your sin against God is exposed, how will you escape the damnation of hell?” [...]
[Prophets frontman Bradlee] Dean has also told students that “there is nothing in our Constitution or founding documents about separation of church and state” and criticized the theory of evolution.
According to the band’s website, it has appeared at over 220 schools over the last few years. (Experience Junkyard Prophets for yourself — their music videos are here.) In some instances turned up by CampusProgress, students were told that attendance at the assembly was mandatory and that they would be suspended if they skipped out.
“Bush’s speech did not break new ground or present a new strategy.” (Via HuffPost)
Bill O’Reilly on the Today Show this morning:
These pin-heads running around going, “Get out of Iraq now” don’t know what they are talking about. These are the same people before Hitler invaded in WWII that were saying, “He’s not such a bad guy.” They don’t get it.
Of course, the most prominent person calling for withdrawing from Iraq now is decorated Vietnam veteran Rep. Jack Murtha.
The time it took President Bush to reference September 11 in this morning’s Iraq speech.