ThinkFast: March 15, 2006

Stewart Simonson, the Bush administration’s “point man for just about every health emergency that may hit our shores, ranging from anthrax attacks to an avian flu pandemic,” has resigned. It’s about time: Simonson had “no background in medicine, public health, or bioterrorism preparedness.”

The Bush administration “has rejected hurricane disaster-recovery loans at a higher rate than any other administration in the last 15 years.” Katrina victims aren’t taking the neglect sitting down. Yesterday they joined Iraq war veterans in a march against the Bush administration.

The FBI undertook surveillance of a Pennsylvania antiwar group, the Thomas Merton Center. An FBI memo noted that the group passed out leaflets claiming “Iraq does not possess weapons of mass destruction,” and that “one of the leaflet distributors ‘appeared to be of Middle Eastern descent.'”

Conservative Washington state columnist Adele Ferguson promotes school vouchers, defends slavery: “The pony hidden in slavery is the fact that it was the ticket to America for black people.”

Just in time for Sunshine Week, the Pentagon’s NORAD reportedly ordered that a transcript from an open, public hearing in January be removed from the web. “That’s a new one, with Big Brotherish overtones.”

Ann Coulter advocates invading Iran and China.

Sen. John Kerry (D-MA) says Bush’s nominee to head the Federal Highway Administration could be “the Brownie of highways.” Capka oversaw Boston’s “Big Dig” highway project, which was criticized for massive cost overruns and lucrative severance packages for project lawyers.

Federal judge James Ware ruled yesterday that Google “needs to turn over thousands of Web search records to the Department of Justice.” The decision came after Justice Department lawyers “dramatically scaled back their demand for information about Google Inc. search queries.”

The good news: Senate Intelligence Committee Chairman and cover-up expert Pat Roberts (R-KS) says three sections of the Phase II investigation into prewar Iraq intelligence are complete. The bad news: “drafts of the two most controversial sections were the ones that were not finished, and he provided no time frame for completing them.”

The Pentagon asks AMERICAblog to help spread propaganda about Iraq.

And finally: A new film tells the true story of Thomas Jones, who in Aug. 1945, as a 16-year-old messenger in Washington, D.C., “was entrusted to deliver to the White House the cable announcing Japan’s surrender to the United States to end World War II. Unaware of his cargo’s import, the boy, in cavalier teenage fashion, put work on hold to eat pancakes at a diner, hang out with his friends and flirt with waitresses.”