Tuesday, August 10, 2004

Bush on tribal sovereignty:

This just in from Indian Country

For the Native perspective on Bush's fumble on tribal sovereignty (reported by AddieStan on Friday), go to Indianz.com. There you'll also find links to video clips of the Bush appearance before Unity, as well as to the whole banana.

Many thanks to our dear friend, Marlon Fixico, for steering your blogstress to this informative site.

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Brilliant person

Your blogstress begs the reader's forgiveness for having fallen down on the job of deconstructing the president's remarks to the Unity conference, a gathering of journalists of color, last Friday in Washington, D.C.

The reactions of the audience of journalists to both President Bush and Democratic presidential candidate Sen. John Kerry the day before have become a matter of some controversy, seeing as Kerry received more than polite applause, while the president received some unstifled titters. So, a debate rages on Romenesko, the site by which journos live and die.

Because a rigorous desconstruction of the Bush remarks now appears to require the effort of a doctoral dissertation, your blogstress will simply highlight one quote each day, until all the good ones are exhausted. So here's the Bush Unity quote for August 10th:

"You look at my administration, it's diverse...When I see Condi [Rice], I think 'brilliant person.'"

When your blogstress sees Condi, she thinks, can I help you find a tailor and a decent hairdresser?

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One thing perfectly clear

Now, listen up, because (hopefully) I'm only going to say this once. And, in homage to our bescandaled 37th president, whose resignation was recalled in a previous post, your blogstress will borrow Nixonian syntax in order to make a rare lapse into the first person:

Let me make one thing perfectly clear: I am not a terrorist.

Why, you may ask, would your cybertrix feel the need to make such a statement?

You see, dear reader, a blogstress will do many a shameful thing in order to support her writing habit, and yours, alas, worked at the World Bank for a year, beginning in 1998--not long after her return from Peshawar, Pakistan.

Talk these days in D.C. is all about how the F.B.I. intends to comb through the employment and contracting records of the World Bank, and cull those that jibe with "suspicious travel," according to Pierre Thomas of ABC NEWS. And having traveled to Pakistan's border with Afghanistan just months after bin Laden's fatwah against all things American--including Americans themselves--your Webwench fears her journey could qualify as suspicious. (Certainly the Pakistani police who interrogated her at the Lahore airport thought so.)

So, what was she doing over there? Oh, just what bleeding-heart, do-gooder, guilt-ridden Yanks do among the starving everywhere--attempt to asuage our consciences. One goes to do good and winds up doing little but raising the expectations of people who have already been bled of any reasonable hope. It's a terribly cruel game.

Your écrivaine had gone to talk with Afghan women in refugee camps, particularly devout Muslims engaged in a fight for women's rights. Yes, Muslim feminists do exist--even in Afghanistan, even in Pakistan. The women she met were fierce and generous and extraordinary. She wonders how many of them are still alive.

So, given this personal history, a vaguely exotic last name, and a three-year-old article about the current, civil rights-adverse attorney general circulating in the blogosphere and fast becoming a cult favorite of oppo types, your cyberscribe thought it wise to issue this disclaimer:

Let me make one thing perfectly clear: I am not a terrorist.

Okay, it's been uttered twice.

Should this blog go suddenly silent, please send your cybertrix a postcard, c/o Gitmo.

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The politics of terror

Slowly making its rounds through the tunnels of the internet is this amazing story of how the Bush administration burnt computer expert Mohammad Naeem Noor Khan, the undercover al Qaeda source for its latest production, the August surprise.

You'll recall that The New Repubic had predicted that the Bushies would capture an "important" al Qaeda figure and trot him out in a July surprise during the Democratic National Convention. And so reports of the capture of a high-value person of interest, one Ahmed Khalfan Ghailani, appeared as predicted, just before Kerry's speech.

Not content with its less than bouncy bounce out of its apparent coup, the administration announced, in the personage of First Toady Tom Ridge, an impending major al Qaeda attack, based on the computer records of Khan, another captured high-value person of interest, whose July arrest may have led to the apprehending of Ghailani. Ridge's announcement, in which he lauded "the president's leadership" came just as Kerry and Edwards hit the road on their post-convention tour--in fact, on the very Sunday that Kerry and Edwards themselves appeared on all of the Sunday talk shows.

Just a coincidence, of course.

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