Five more U.S. soldiers killed in Iraq.
This preemptive action taken by the Bush administration on the eve of the ‘Sicko’ premiere in Cannes led our attorneys to fear for the safety of our film, noting that Secretary Paulson may try to claim that the content of the movie was obtained through a violation of the trade embargo that our country has against Cuba and the travel laws that prohibit average citizens of our free country from traveling to Cuba. (The law does not prohibit anyone from exercising their first amendment right of a free press and documentaries are protected works of journalism.)
I was floored when our lawyers told me this. “Are you saying they might actually confiscate our movie?” “Yes,” was the answer. “These days, anything is possible. Even if there is just a 20 percent chance the government would seize our movie before Cannes, does anyone want to take that risk?”
Certainly not. So there we were last week, spiriting a duplicate master negative out of the country just so no one from the government would take it from us. (Seriously, I can’t believe I just typed those words! Did I mention that I’m an American, and this is America and NO ONE should ever have to say they had to do such a thing?)
It’s worth noting that President Bush’s threat to veto a 3.5 percent pay raise for U.S. soldiers fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan came just two days before Armed Forces Day, the “single holiday for citizens to come together and thank our military members for their patriotic service in support of our country.”
Busy campaigning for his presidential bid, Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) has missed over 40 consecutive roll-call votes, going five straight weeks “without casting a vote on the Senate floor.”
Yesterday, after apparently skipping most of the extended closed-door White House/Senate immigration negotiations, McCain “suddenly re-emerged” to take part in the press conference announcing the deal.
This isn’t sitting well with McCain’s colleagues. Tonight, Fox News correspondent Major Garrett reported that “anger burst forth memorably and loudly” when Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX) accused McCain of being “too busy running for president.” McCain responded by using “the f-word toward Cornyn,” though it’s not clear “if the f-word was a verb or a gerund.”
Maybe McCain should take his own advice and “lighten up.”
UPDATE: Apparently it wasn’t just the f-word:
At a bipartisan gathering in an ornate meeting room just off the Senate floor, McCain complained that Cornyn was raising petty objections to a compromise plan being worked out between Senate Republicans and Democrats and the White House. He used a curse word associated with chickens and accused Cornyn of raising the issue just to torpedo a deal.
Things got really heated when Cornyn accused McCain of being too busy campaigning for president to take part in the negotiations, which have gone on for months behind closed doors. “Wait a second here,” Cornyn said to McCain. “I’ve been sitting in here for all of these negotiations and you just parachute in here on the last day. You’re out of line.”
McCain, a former Navy pilot, then used language more accustomed to sailors (not to mention the current vice president, who made news a few years back after a verbal encounter with Sen. Patrick Leahy of Vermont).
“[Expletive] you! I know more about this than anyone else in the room,” shouted McCain at Cornyn.
Transcript: Read more
In recent weeks, two conservative House members whose homes were raided in FBI corruption investigations have claimed that the raids were part of a Justice Department conspiracy.
Rep. John Doolittle (R-CA) said the raid on his house last month was “little more than an attempt to intimidate and pressure” him to admit criminal wrongdoing. Rep. Rick Renzi (R-AZ) said that the Justice Department had been leaking “lies” about him “and that needs to be investigated.”
Today, Doolittle took the conspiracy theory a step further, blaming the Justice Department’s actions on partisan Democrats inside the Bush administration:
In a telephone press conference with California reporters, the Roseville Republican said he still thinks the raid – and more importantly, the government’s leak of information about it – was all about rehabilitating the reputation of embattled Attorney General Alberto Gonzales.
But it wasn’t Republicans trying to do the rehabilitating, Doolittle said. It was embedded Democratic staffers in the Justice Department who were responsible because of the party’s “Republican culture of corruption” campaign.
Doolittle apparently didn’t explain why partisan Democrats would be interested in “rehabilitating” Alberto Gonzales’ image, or how these liberal Bush officials managed to convince FBI agents to seek a warrant for the raid and then convince a judge to approve the warrant. We’re sure there’s a perfectly good explanation.
Calitics has more.
by Reps. Adam Schiff (D-CA) and Artur Davis (D-AL), two “former Assistant United States Attorneys, with a combined 10 years of experience as prosecutors in the Department of Justice.
Sen. Wayne Allard (R-CO) is “weighing” whether to call for Alberto Gonzales to resign “after reports that a former interim U.S. attorney for Colorado — who had Allard’s backing — was targeted for dismissal in early 2006. ‘Clearly these revelations are cause for concern,’ Allard’s chief of staff, Sean Conway, told The Associated Press Friday. … ‘(Allard is) watching things carefully and taking them all in…in terms of the attorney general’s future.’” Let us know how that goes.
UPDATE: Sen. Ken Salazar (D-CO) makes up his mind. “Salazar today called for the resignation of his friend, Attorney General Alberto Gonzales, whose leadership he said had tarnished the Department of Justice. ‘I arrive at the decision with a heavy heart and disappointment,’ said Salazar.”
For years, I assumed that every English person I heard speaking was incredibly intelligent. Then one day I realized it was just that English people speak with English accents and it’s not the same thing. Case in point, Tony Blair, who helpfully explains that the plan to use Iraq as the first stop in a broader campaign of regional transformation would have gone swimmingly if not for the fact that . . . some people fought back.
A day after resigning as World Bank President, Paul Wolfowitz said “his biggest task before leaving on June 30 was to meet with staff.” An anonymous employee responded: “Please just leave. You can take all your loyal employees with you. Who are you kidding?”