"Bush is another president we deserve. He, too, is often accused of betraying Americans — by campaigning as a humble man and governing as something else. But this is also wrong. Bush has governed as he promised to — with the kind of phony-demotic cocksureness that many people like in pickup-truck commercials and think of themselves as embodying. When he let it be known that he didn’t “do nuance,” it was an invitation to say: “Good. Neither do we.” But this banty self-assurance — our self-assurance — appears not such a great trait when it leads you into a bloodbath in Iraq. The feeling circulating since the election is relief — relief that this unflattering mirror is a bit closer to being taken away. It should not surprise us that this feeling is as strong among those who supported the president as among those who did not."
"The midterm election that handed control of Congress to the Democrats can be ignored. Bush's own approval rating in the polls, now at an all-time low of 27 percent, likewise means little or nothing.
Only Bush's definition of reality carries any weight with him, and therein lies the tragedy -- both his and ours.
Did you notice that at every stop on the president's information-gathering tour last week, there was a very familiar face looming over his shoulder? There was Vice President Dick Cheney, looking as nervous as a long-tailed cat in a room full of rocking chairs.
Should the president suddenly have an original thought or seem to be going wobbly, Cheney will be right there to squelch it or to set him straight.
It can be argued that Bush understood little about war and peace and diplomacy and honesty in government. Cheney understood all of it, and he bears much of the responsibility for what's gone on in Washington and in Iraq for the last six years. Keep a sharp eye on him. Desperate men do desperate things."
"An update on the House of Death matter I am hoping to pursue further: I expect to have a few interview scheduled for this week, and will post both the podcast and transcript when they are available, and will write further about it when warranted."he's interviewing sandy gonzales.
"U.S. Special Forces teams sent overseas on secret spying missions have clashed with the CIA and carried out operations in countries that are staunch U.S. allies, prompting a new effort by the agency and the Pentagon to tighten the rules for military units engaged in espionage, according to senior U.S. intelligence and military officials.
The spy missions are part of a highly classified program that officials say has better positioned the United States to track terrorist networks and capture or kill enemy operatives in regions such as the Horn of Africa, where weak governments are unable to respond to emerging threats.
But the initiative has also led to several embarrassing incidents for the United States, including a shootout in Paraguay and the exposure of a sensitive intelligence operation in East Africa, according to current and former officials familiar with the matter. And to date, the effort has not led to the capture of a significant terrorism suspect.
Some intelligence officials have complained that Special Forces teams have sometimes launched missions without informing the CIA, duplicating or even jeopardizing existing operations. And they questioned deploying military teams in friendly nations — including in Europe — at a time when combat units are in short supply in war zones."