Rino Sightings: Week of April 23, 2007

Jane Novak at Armies of Liberation has an article shedding some light on the politics of Yemen, where tribal authority operates outside and even above the law (crossposted at The Arab American News):

Many within Yemen’s Cabinet, Parliament and other government agencies have the courage and political will to challenge this status quo. However, efforts toward governmental efficiency and neutrality, and economic growth and development, are regularly thwarted by the substructure of political tribalism.

While shuffling Cabinet members may well have a positive impact in Yemen, that impact will be limited without strong presidential support. President Saleh, who presided over the tribalization of Yemen, is the only one who can fully empower the Prime Minister, the Cabinet, the Parliament, the judiciary and other state institutions. The institutional development of the Yemeni government must necessarily come at the expense of President Saleh’s tribal allies. After 28 years in power, it remains to be seen if Saleh has the capacity to choose the nation over his cohorts.

All Things Jennifer addresses indirectly the question of why Karl Rove might not want to be jabbed in the chest by Sheryl Crow. Given this quote from Crow on the issue of toilet paper, I’ll pass on being touched by her myself:

“I propose a limitation be put on how many squares of toilet paper can be used in any one sitting.”

aTypical Joe explains why he bought half of Cow #9. Ted Nugent would be proud.:

Yesterday we had a party to celebrate, honor, and eat some of cow #9: 68 burgers and 6 Boca burgers (nearly 10%, we had a vegetarian station set up).

I’ve been meaning to write the definitive post on why I bought cow #9, but as I put it off and put it off the task grew larger and larger and I realized that there are so many reasons (a click on my Food link will give a good sampling) that there can be no definitive post. What I can simply and honestly say is that the most important among all those reasons was that I could know that this cow, #9, had a good life. And I could know that this cow, #9, had a humane death.

Digger is off to DC to lobby against illegal immigration at the Hold Their Feet to the Fire event and reports back here. Perhaps the big, but unsurprising news was that John Boehner’s staff treated them badly:

The office of Congressman John Boehner, minority leader in the House, threw out the first of our citizen lobbyists that went on Capitol Hill this morning to discuss illegal immigration. Most of the groups went out as five with a leader. The group that consisted of Jeff Liegey and Ed Liegey of Pennsylvania and Scot Toops and Maylene Miller of Ohio just got back about 5 minutes ago and said the staff of Boehner’s office were rude. Maylene said that she went into the office and respectfully requested a discussion on the issue and the office staff told her to stop yelling at them and eventually had them leave.
The same group talked to Duncan Hunter’s office staff and were invited in and given coffee and allowed to talk. The group was not inexperienced when they went into Boehner’s office.

I can’t say that I agree with their cause, but were I a Republican leader, I’d try to show them at least a little courtesy given that these are part of the Republican grassroots. But maybe that helps to explain how Boehner and Company managed to accomplish so little from 2004 to 2006 other than losing the Republican majority.

For my part, if you missed it, I had enough…again…of the “professional media” displaying their ignorance of basic politics. The Supreme Court did not ban any form of abortion or anything else last week, but according to one NY Daily News reporter (among others) :

The federal government’s reluctance to say how it will enforce the Supreme Court’s ban on a type of late-term abortion has left some fearing the worst.

RINO,Rino sightings,immigration,Yemen,Arab Americans,beef,food,farming

That vaunted professional media

The Supreme Court did not ban partial birth abortion last week.

The federal government’s reluctance to say how it will enforce the Supreme Court’s ban on a type of late-term abortion has left some fearing the worst.

“Breaking down doors, running into operating rooms – it’s possible,” said Katherine Grainger of the Center for Reproductive Rights, which unsuccessfully argued against the Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act of 2003. [Emphasis mine]

Line one strains the credibility of everything else. Someone should probably tell Katherine Grainger to pick a little brighter tool next time.

partial birth abortion,Supreme Court

Feds may ‘break down doors,’ pro-choicers worry

Maybe if she took the label off…

Doris Moore of Toronto was delivered a new couch which, ostensibly due to an error by Chinese-English translation software, bore the label n****r brown. Everyone involved has apologized, though no one has gone to rehab, and Ms. Moore is not satisfied. She wants cash and apparently not just a refund:

Something more has to be done. We don’t just need a personal apology, but someone needs to own up to where these labels were made, and someone needs to apologize to all people of color. I had friends over from St. Lucia yesterday and they wouldn’t sit on the couch.

Easier solutions: Take the couch back, demand a refund and buy elsewhere. Send a note to the translation software company asking if their software is available in a “c***k yellow” package. Don’t hold a news conference and these sensitive friends from St. Lucia will never know. And it might help to take the label off the couch.

offensive couch,n-word

Chinese translation error blamed for slur on sofa label

Watergate or the Rose Law Firm billing records?

The knee jerk reaction of many in the media on hearing that White House emails were missing was to scream “Nixon!” (49 results in a Google News search for “white house emails nixon” as of this time). My knee jerked a different direction. I immediately thought, “sounds like Hillary Clinton and the Rose Law Firm billing records.” I was a bit disappointed that the President might be behaving like his adopted sister-in-law and even more disappointed that no one else was thinking the same thing. (The only result in a Google News search for “white house emails Rose Law Firm” was a hip-hop news site where I learned that Usher’s fiancee is pregnant.)

So, I pulled my knee back a bit and pondered the similarities and differences of the three events.

Even without the erased minutes, the Watergate tapes would still have been problematic for a couple of reasons. First, there was an Orwellian overtone to the secret taping of every conversation the President had. Email has no such baggage. Second, the Nixon tapes were vulgar. In the unlikely event that White House emails compare, I’d bet that it will just mean the President firing a few more people.

It was plausible that the Rose Law Firm billing records could have been misplaced. It’s equally plausible that emails could have been inadvertently deleted. In the time period we’re talking about for these missing emails, I’ve had two hard drive failures. Had I been using a program like Microsoft Outlook in its out-of-the-box configuration, I’d have lost all my emails – twice. Should people in government be careful enough to avoid such losses? Sure. Is it intelligent to actually believe government workers will be that careful? No. Is it surprising that liberals do expect it? Not really.

Of course, there is one basic similarity shared by the Watergate and Rose Law Firm episodes that simply isn’t shared in the Matter of the Missing Emails: there were actual crimes committed and being investigated in those cases. No one – not one single reasonable commentator – has suggested that the President committed a crime by exercising his Constitutional and statutory authority to fire his appointees. It’s not merely that there is no evidence of a crime; everyone involved is fully aware that there is no question that the President and his advisors acted within the law. Every “investigator” knows that he is investigating a nonevent. What did the President know and when did he know it? It really doesn’t matter one iota.

If the emails turn up in the First Lady’s closet, let me know. Otherwise, let’s find something more important to worry about. For example, is Anna Nicole still dead?

Watergate,email,White House