Saturday, July 5, 2008

The Nightowl Newswrap

This is the sort of thing that could turn Montana blue
A sweetheart deal made behind closed doors between a bu$h administration official who is a former timber lobbyist and Plum Creek Timber Co., a former logging company turned real estate investment trust that builds McMansions. Plum Creek holds title to more than 8 million acres nationwide, including 1.2 million acres in the mountains of western Montana, and local officials were stunned and outraged at the deal. "We have 40 years of Forest Service history that has been reversed in the last three months," said Pat O'Herren, an official in Missoula County, which is threatening to sue the Forest Service for forgoing environmental assessments and other procedures that would have given the public a say in the decision making process.

Poland tells the bu$h administration to do better
Friday wasn't a holiday in Poland, so business was conducted on Friday, and one of the items that the Polish government dealt with was to tell the bu$h administration that if they want to to put a "missile shield" on Polish soil, they best make with sweetening the pot. The decision is a setback for the Bush administration drive to counter perceived threats from what the administration refers to as *rogue states* (most people simply say "Iran.") "We have not reached a satisfactory result on the issue of increasing the level of Polish security," Prime Minister Donald Tusk told a news conference after studying the latest U.S. proposal. "The aim of the negotiations, in my view, is to enhance the security of our country. We still agree that it is fundamental for us to maintain our alignment with the United States, which has been, is and will continue to be our strategic ally."

trex, are you okay?
Our friend and occasional commenter trex hails from Michigan and we are keeping an eye out for a comment or an email from him after violent storms lashed the lower peninsula a couple of days ago. As of Saturday, thousands were still without power. Give us a shout when you get a chance, okay, Buddy? We are sending you, and all those without power, thoughts of cool breezes and mid-70s temperatures. These storms are affecting Michiganders now - but the latest round, coupled with severe storms in June, is going to affect the price we all pay for food in the coming months, because crops and orchards have been hard it in the last few weeks.

A four point lead for Obama
The Politico looked data from past general election years and found that the candidate leading in the Gallup poll that was conducted closest to the July 4th holiday won the presidency 2/3 of the time. This year, the poll shows Obama up by four - another historic obstacle for McCain to overcome.

Swiftboaters, 2008
A new 501-C organization (which means they can hide who is funding them) is hitting the airwaves with a lot of war-fluffing commercials following a "Four months, for victory" theme. They call themselves "nonpartisan" but that is a dodge - they are 100% pro-Iraq war, and that is their "only litmus test." The 501-C organizational structure is the one preferred by "astroturfing" agenda whores, and allows folks like Murdoch and Scaife to basically buy an organization to attack candidates who hold positions they don't like. Here is hoping that these goons are about as successful as "Freedom's Watch" turned out to be - but that they spend a hell of a lot of money on their way down.

Being a decent sort of chap, he was offended
Madame Tussauds wax museum opened in Berlin and featured a display of a beset-looking Hitler in his bunker. The second person through the museum ripped the head off Hitler. Jewish and anti-fascist groups had criticised the decision to display the model saying that it was included 'merely to generate money'. Under German law, any display of Nazi regalia - including the one at Madame Tussauds - is illegal.

The feeling is mutual...
The most-excellent Crooks and Liars has a video of McCain at at townhall meeting last winter saying that he "hates the bloggers." Maybe because we call Wet Start on his actual record - which includes graduating at the bottom of his class at the Academy, being a right prick hated by pretty much everyone his entire career, five lost planes because he was a hot-dogging asshole, adultery, dumping his wife for a sugar mama who had no qualms about fucking a married father of four, and most damning of all, we have the temerity to bring up the incident that claimed the lives of 132 Sailors aboard the USS Forrestal, and earned him the derisive moniker "Wet Start McCain" among many in the Navy? Is that why he hates us? 'Cuz we aren't under his thrall, and look at the man, rather than the myth?

Long-term unemployment continues to rise
The number of people out of work for six months or longer has risen sharply over the past year, to 1.6 million - up 37% since this time last year. There is no sign of this unsettling trend slowing down any time soon.

Uh huh, and our names are Jack and Meg White and he has a Tesla Coil in his Little Red Wagon...
The National Black Republican Association has put up billboards in Florida and South Carolina saying the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. was a Republican. Black leaders, including the Rev. Joseph Lowery, who co-founded the Southern Christian Leadership Conference with King, say is an absolutely ridiculous claim. In fact, Lowery literally laughed out loud when asked about the billboards. "These guys never give up, do they? Lord have mercy."

And just a reminder - without being too obnoxious about it - we are setting our tip jar out and asking for spare change as we get ready for BG's trip to Netroots Nation to flog the blog...

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