ThinkFast: May 16, 2006

Rove is worried. “Rove’s friends and colleagues tell NEWSWEEK that the senior Bush aide has struggled to maintain an upbeat front about his legal status in recent weeks and that he has appeared distracted.” (The AP — apparently falling for the act — reports that Rove is “unfazed” by his legal troubles.)

About 20 percent of Boston College’s faculty signed a letter opposing the school’s plan to award Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice an honorary degree when she addresses this year’s graduates, saying it is morally wrong to praise a leader whose efforts promote an “unjust war.”

Nearly four years after it opened the detention center in Cuba, the Bush administration gave the AP the first list of everyone who has been held at Guantanamo Bay. While the list contained 201 names that had never been disclosed, “none of the most notorious terrorist suspects were included, raising questions about where America’s most dangerous prisoners are being held.”

Meanwhile, the Pentagon has also “launched a public relations campaign to offset the negative publicity about its terrorist detention center,” which the International Committee of the Red Cross has said houses “an intentional system of cruel, unusual and degrading treatment and a form of torture.”

“We’re doing a heck of a job” — Karl Rove on Bush’s immigration policy.

The U.S. government will re-establish diplomatic relations with Libya. (Former NYT reporter Judith Miller leans on confidential sources to explain the move.) American oil companies stand to gain from the deal. The announcement was interpreted by some as proof that promotion of democracy is no longer a top priority of the Bush administration.


While diabetes is the only major disease with a death rate that is still rising, “public health experts say federal spending on the disease has historically fallen short of what is needed. And now the government has cut diabetes funds in the budgets for this year and next, despite the explosive growth of a disease that now figures in the deaths of 225,000 Americans each year.”

House Administration Chairman Vernon Ehlers (R-MI), who took over his chairman position from Rep. Bob Ney (R-OH) (a.k.a. Representative #1 in the Abramoff court pleadings), said yesterday that “number of Members are very concerned about the way the Justice Department is investigating.”

BellSouth claims it has no evidence it was contacted by the NSA and did not give the government access to any of its customers’ phone call records. “Based on our review to date, we have confirmed no such contract exists and we have not provided bulk customer calling records to the NSA.”

And finally: 78-year-old Texas attorneys beware. According to Vice President Dick Cheney’s financial disclosure form, last year Cheney received “a $6,125 prewar single-action Colt 45 revolver, which was donated to the Cody Firearms Museum in Wyoming, and a $1,000 handmade, engraved Lewis & Clark reproduction rifle.”

What did we miss? Let us know in the comments section.