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January 18, 2004 Sidebars

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He's our guy!   Notes on George Bush.

To the MOON, Alice!



So were going to the moon, again.  The speeches are starting.  Folks have opinions on this.  Bush had the former astronauts visit the White House.


An infrequent feature on Slate Magazine is the Bushism of the Day.  These are compiled by Jacob Weisberg.  Here's what appeared this week. 


"I want to thank the astronauts who are with us, the courageous spacial entrepreneurs who set such a wonderful example for the young of our country."


         - Washington, D.C., Jan. 14, 2004


Well, "special" isn't exactly a word.  But you know what he meant.  Close enough.

His use of the word "entrepreneurs" is odd though - these guys started small businesses up there from 1969 through the early seventies?  Who were their customers?


Curiously I got this reaction from Emma.  Emma is Australian, but she lives and works in France.  (Don't ask.)

ALL us non-Americans are overjoyed at the news George W. Bush wants to take Americans to Mars via the moon.

Having used up most of the US natural resources polluted the atmosphere and rivers and now trying to buy up all the gas around, we can't wait for Bush and his cronies to go.  There will be less spam and internet pornography won't be so crude.

The problem is going to be getting all the Bush camp off the Earth, it will take a very large space vehicle and will there be room for John Howard (my beloved PM) and Tony Blair?

Think how peaceful it will be, we can't wait for Bush to go. 

But hang on a minute!  No more McDonald's milk shakes, no more Seinfeld, no more popcorn & coke movies, no more Amazon.com... no more fun...

I take it all back George.  Anyway, you can't afford it with your enormous budget deficit can you?  Can you?! 

Stay and be a good Christian. "Do unto others as they would do unto you," and that doesn't mean you have to do it first.

Happy Birthday, SUCKER!


Last year on Martin Luther King Junior's birthday, George Bush celebrated by giving a speech in which he argued that the University of Michigan affirmative action program was wrong-headed and unnecessary and should be ended.  Bad timing?  An "in your face gesture" showing where he stands on such matters?

This year, on the day after, and after he was booed in Atlanta making a short stop at the King memorial, to lay a wreath on the grave, on his way to another fundraiser, he celebrated by installing Charles Pickering onto the bench.

Better timing.  Wait a day. 


See this:


Bush Installs Pickering on Appeals Court
The Associated Press Friday, January 16, 2004; 3:17 PM
WASHINGTON - President Bush installed Charles Pickering on a federal appeals court Friday, bypassing Democrats who had stalled his nomination for more than two years, sources said.

Bush appointed Pickering by a recess appointment which avoids the confirmation process. Such appointments are valid until the next Congress takes office, in this case in January 2005.

Pickering, a federal trial judge who Bush nominated for a seat on the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans, has been waiting for a confirmation vote in the Senate.

Democrats have accused him of supporting segregation as a young man, and pushing anti-abortion and anti-voting rights views as a state lawmaker. They also have said they wouldn't be able to trust Pickering to keep his conservative opinions out of his work on the federal appeals court.


Well, it's a bit more than that. 


Charles Pickering's record begins with a law school article he wrote defending anti-miscegenation statutes.   The races should NOT mix - if he had his way, one supposes, Halley Berry and Walter Moseley would never have been born. 


In the sixties Pickering worked to support segregation, attack civil rights advocates who sought to end Jim Crow, and back those who opposed national civil rights legislation, above all the landmark Civil Rights Act of 1964.  He had a problem with that. 


In 1967 he signed a statement saying he wanted to preserve "our southern way of life," and he bitterly blamed civil rights workers for stirring up "turmoil and racial hatred" in the South.  Well, John Ashcroft has said similar things.  Big deal?


In the 1970s, as a state senator, he voted to appropriate money to the Sovereignty Commission, a group dedicated to resisting desegregation.


And of course everyone is reporting how he intervened to have the harsh, mandatory sentence of a young fellow convicted of burning a cross on the lawn of a home reduced or eliminated.  Well, at least he didn't claim it was protected free speech, that the black folks who were targeted should lighten up a bit.  He claimed it was just "youthful exuberance" and should be excused.  Not a problem.  Yep.


Perhaps the South will rise again.  He's on the bench now.


Oh well. 


Martin Luther King Junior is dead.  So he won't make any trouble.


Happy birthday to Martin Luther King.