March 24, 2006
In Major White House Shakeup, Bush To Replace Rove and Cheney With Rove And Cheney

Rumsfeld to Stay On

President Bush today admitted that he would be making major changes to White House staff in an attempt to address flagging poll numbers and "fatigue." Bush focused on Karl Rove and Dick Cheney, who Americans have indicated are at the heart of some of the deepest and worst missteps the administration has taken, among them the faltering response to Hurricane Katrina and the shooting of people in the face.

Rove and Cheney are to step down by week's end, after which they will be reappointed to their current positions. "I am not afraid to make tough calls, admit mistakes, and correct them," said Bush. "This is a White House which is committed to growth and change."

Bush pooh-poohed suggestions that the shakeup was purely cosmetic, and more of a public relations gambit than a substantive makeover. "This Dick Cheney is not the same Dick Cheney who took office with me in 2001. For one thing, I understand he's had some implants."

He also suggested that Karl Rove had been chastened and reborn in the wake of criticism and by the stigma of having to give up his office, if only for two days. Rove himself said, "I'm an idiot one day and a genius the next." Bush said that Rove had been "half-right," but would not elaborate other than to say that "this time out," the White House would employ him every other day.

Bush refused to replace Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, either with Rumsfeld or another person, despite calls for his resignation in the face of his poor handling of the Iraq war and the Abu Ghraib scandal. "I don't think anyone could have foreseen that the Iraq war would have cost this much money or caused any loss of life."

Posted by Tom Burka at 11:12 AM in News

March 20, 2006
Bush, Cheney Drop Huge Cake On Iraq, Crush Power Plant

In celebration of the third anniversary of the invasion of Iraq, President Bush and Vice President Cheney dropped an enormous three-tiered anniversary cake on central Iraq, accidentally crushing the only working power plant in the area.

"Everything's just great in Iraq," said Cheney, who was so thrilled with the progress of the country that he was "planning to winter there someday."

"Things are so good now," said President Bush, "just imagine how fantastic it will be when they have a McDonald's on every corner."

Mohammed dar al Salim, a former baker whose shop had been destroyed by looters a year ago, agreed. "The future is certainly bright," he told reporters. "It's the present that worries me."

Fifty people who were killed yesterday as a result of the civil war could not be reached for comment.

Posted by Tom Burka at 10:26 AM in News

March 13, 2006
Clicks and Picks

Yes, I've been nominated for Most Humorous Blog -- and I'm begging you to go there, scroll down to the bottom, and leave a comment voting for me -- but there's a new kid on the block who will certainly be nominated next year that you should check out. Don Davis, who wrote the wonderful collection of satirical poems, One State, Two State, Red State, Blue State, has started a blog. the Satirical Political Report and it's well worth reading if you need a laugh.

Also, in honor of March Madness, Liberal-Bias hosts its own March Madness competition -- with a bracket that has notorious conservatives and media folk pitted against each other for the championship. This is one tough competition -- but I'm betting Dick Cheney will just shoot anyone who stands between him and the crown.

Posted by Tom Burka at 2:50 PM in Links

March 10, 2006
Senate To Legalize Watergate Break-In

The Senate will vote next week to pass a bill that will retroactively declare the Watergate break-in to be legal.

"If President Nixon felt that spying on the Democratic National Committee headquarters was necessary, that's good enough for me," said Sen. Pat Roberts (R.-Kan.), who elaborated, "It's time for us to stop second-guessing our leaders."

The bill is the first of a number of laws that aims to ensure that the President can do no wrong. Other laws contemplated by the Senate specifically authorize the trading of arms for hostages, manipulating intelligence to make the case for war, misleading the American people, and the use of the word "strategery."

Democrats moved swiftly with an amendment making the truthfulness of grand jury testimony dependent on what the meaning of "is" is.

Republicans also plan to give the White House three "Free Passes" and two get-out-jail-free cards in case White House officials commit crimes before Congress has the opportunity to decriminalize them.

"I am satisfied that these bills increase Congressional oversight of the Executive Branch," said Sen. Olympia Snowe. "After all, we can't insulate the President from the consequences of his wrongdoing unless the President tells us what he is doing wrong."

Posted by Tom Burka at 3:27 PM in News

March 7, 2006
Nominated Again!

Opinions You Should Have has been nominated for two Koufax awards (awards for lefty blogs -- Koufax, get it?): Most Humorous Blog, and Most Deserving of Wider Recognition.

The Koufax Awards are great -- for one thing, the nominated blogs (nice, long lists of blogs in every category) are wonderful to go through to find great new blogs that one hasn't known about, and to rediscover good blogs that one has lost touch with.

I, of course, ask readers to go vote for me, either by leaving a comment over there or sending in an email to the good folks at Wampum who spend countless hours running the thing. (If you're a big reader of blogs or a big blogger, consider tipping those guys -- it's expensive to run the awards.)

Note: While it says several places at Wampum that "voting is not yet open" -- those are old notices!

Posted by Tom Burka at 10:53 AM in Notices

Veto Corleone

Bush wants a line-item veto. It makes sense, since general vetos are only good for getting rid of bills that increase the security of the United States.

Posted by Tom Burka at 10:13 AM in Commentary

March 3, 2006
When the Levee Breaks

I now know what the levees felt, because I have had it up to here, to say the least. I certainly feel like I have been breached, and not a little violated. In the wake of the release of the video showing Bush being briefed on the impending Katrina disaster, hearing the Republican nonsense that Bush was only warned that the levees would be overtopped, not breached, is beyond the pale.

It is safe to say that the breach of the New Orleans levees was the single most anticipated disaster of the past hundred years. Louisianans, in discussions with the Federal government and the U.S. Army Corp of Engineers, spoke of it for many years before it occurred -- there were government studies on how to prevent it, Congressional orders -- discussions, meetings, articles, forums, simulations-- for at least five or ten years before Katrina. It was, in and outside of the disaster planning community, a constant refrain. To paraphrase Robert Klein, remote tribes of aborigines could have told you about it.

To hear the Republicans talk about it, it was as if, last August, pigs had fallen from the skies until an American city was destroyed by raining swine.

Click "Below the Fold" to read more.

Below the fold »

Posted by Tom Burka at 10:15 AM in Commentary