Category Archives: Iraq

It’s Hard Out Here For A Pimp: A Break In The Hustle And Flow Of Political Pimping

Constitution, Democracy, Iraq, Politics, Republicans

The series of eruptions begun when Donald Trump appeared on the scene to send The System’s sycophants scattering continued in the people’s House, today. House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, a shoo-in for the position of speaker and status quo enforcer, is gone. McCarthy will not be vying to be speaker of the House.

Like others among the mummified media, CNN’s Dana Bash confessed to being flabbergasted. You see, Bash is used to the hustle and flow of political pimping. Yeah, it’s hard out here for a pimp.

Last night, MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow spun a riveting yarn. It all began with a good GOPer named Walter Jones (R). A really good GOPer, as Rachel is wont to say. North Carolina Rep. Walter Jones (R) is in the humble habit of signing off as “Walter.” But that’s not why “Walter” is a really good guy. “Walter” has also repented, as a moral man would, after voting to invade Iraq:

“I did not do what I should have done to read and find out whether Bush was telling us the truth about Saddam being responsible for 9/11 and having weapons of mass destruction,” Jones said during an interview on The Tyler Cralle Show.
“Because I did not do my job then,” Jones continued, “I helped kill 4,000 Americans, and I will go to my grave regretting that.”

Other Republicans should repent too! Said Saint Augustine: “The confession of evil works is the first beginning of good works.”

The latest good deed by “Walter” is to force the events aforementioned. Jones,

sent a letter to the No. 4 House Republican saying any candidate for leadership who has committed any “misdeeds” since joining Congress should “withdraw” from the contest.

Jones, a 20-year veteran of Washington, is referring to marital infidelity, and made reference to former Rep. Bob Livingston (R-La.), who stepped down due to an affair before he was slated to become speaker, and Newt Gingrich.

“With all the voter distrust of Washington felt around the country, I am asking that any candidate for Speaker of the House, majority leader, and majority whip withdraw himself from the leadership election if there are any misdeeds he has committed since joining Congress that will embarrass himself, the Republican Conference and the House of Representatives if they become public,” Jones wrote in a letter to Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-Wash.).

From Hustle & Flow (an American film about a pimp who aspires to become a rapper) we move on to The Second Coming by William Butler Yeats:

Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold;
Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world …

Kevin is gone. This is not chaos, as the mummified media would have it; it’s creative destruction.

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Donald Trump Does Presidential

Business, Elections, Iraq, Politics, Republicans

VA Worker: Do you think the VA has run out of money to help veterans?
Donald Trump: I think they have run out of competence. They have incompetent people running it.

At his New Hampshire press conference, Friday afternoon, Donald Trump was relaxed, commanding, decisive and … dare I say presidential? MSNBC even uttered the last adjective following the event.

While the other candidates, the parasites, hire “experts” to tell them what the people desire, so that they can get elected by promising them the earth; Trump is gathering the best, most productive and creative people around him to solve problems, not make people-pleasing promises. Note how pundits—mediocrities who enjoy their perches for no other reason than that they make themselves agreeable to the powers that be—are struggling to adapt to the way private enterprise thinks and works. The same incompetents who can’t make heads or tails of the Trump candidacy believe that when Trump says “our leaders are stupid”; he’s being simplistic, childish. But it really is as simple as all that—although I’d add that the traitor class is also venal.

Transcript courtesy of CNN (which still believes in the written word):

REPORTER: When are we going to see you roll out specific policy?

TRUMP: It will be very soon. Yes. I mean, I have some of the most brilliant people in the country working on tax, which I’m involved in very much because I understand the system very well, probably better than anybody that’s ever run for office, if you want to know the truth, because I am part of the system.

But we have some amazing people working on immigration. So, I would say over the next two or three weeks, probably sometime during September. OK?

REPORTER: Aren’t you worried about what Putin has done over in Ukraine —

TRUMP: So, Ukraine is a problem. But at some point, don’t you think that the countries of Europe should be a little bit more involved than they are? We are leading all these fights, and Ukraine is a big problem.

Germany is a very rich, powerful country, Germany, economically tremendous power — tremendous unbelievable unleashed economic power. Why isn’t Germany — do we have to lead every fight?

So, Ukraine is a problem. We should help them. But let Germany and other countries over there that are directly affected — let them work it. Let them work it.

We’ve got enough problems in this country. We have to rebuild our country. China and other countries have drained us. China has created the greatest theft in the history of the United States.

I mean, if you think about it, it’s the greatest theft in the history of the United States. The money they have taken out from us. It’s a one-way street. So, we have enough problems. Now, we back our folks and we back our friends and we want them

to straighten out Ukraine. And I want to see it straightened out also. But don’t you think maybe Germany and those countries directly affected should be fighting — it’s almost like they don’t even care. They don’t even care.

TRUMP: I think I get along great with them. I get along great. Who knows? But I think I’d get along great with them.

REPORTER: How are you doing?

TRUMP: How are you?

REPORTER: Rand Paul spent three days here in New Hampshire and he spent those days criticizing you.

TRUMP: Well, that’s because —

REPORTER: What did you do to tick him off?

TRUMP: Yes. No, Rand Paul — you have to understand — is a disaster in the polls. He’s a disaster on military and defense. He is getting decimated by everybody. And other than giving him a lot of money for an eye center at his request — he asked me, could I have money? I said, absolutely. Because I thought it was worthwhile. But I gave him a lot of money for an eye center, which is very hypocritical when you think of it. But other than giving him a tremendous amount of money for his eye center, which I’m happy about, frankly, because I’m sure they do good work, I hope they do good work, he is doing so badly that he figures he has to attack Trump because I’m leading by a lot everywhere.

And I don’t mind. I think he’s — he is never going to make it. Never going to make it. Can’t make it. Got the wrong message. I mean, this is not a time to be weak on defense. Okay? And I’m the opposite. I want to make our military so strong, so powerful, so great that nobody is going to mess with us. And I want to take care of our vets who are treated like third-class citizens. You know, two weeks ago on Wednesday, our vets, as you know — you probably reported on it, because you have a big problem here with vets that are not taken care of properly. Our vets had the longest wait in the history of the V.A., waiting for doctors in rooms. They wait four, five, six days. And in one case, they waited five days and the doctor said, sorry, I’m going on vacation now.

So our politicians all talk, no action. They’re all the same. Our politicians have let the vets down. Rand Paul has let the vets down. He has let the vets down. You know, I don’t blame him. He is doing so poorly in the polls so he attacks the person — you know, hey, look, I’ve been attack now by Perry of Texas. And he went peeing like a rocket ship except in the wrong direction. I was attacked by Lindsey Graham. And he had two points. Now he has zero. Now, Rand Paul has very few points. But I think he’s going down, too. I will say one further thing about Rand Paul then let’s not waste a lot of time. But Rand Paul is using the people of Kentucky.

Either run for Senate and do a good job or run for president. You don’t run for president and by the way, if I don’t make it, I will become your senator reluctantly. If I were somebody — a good, strong republican from Kentucky, I would run against him in a heartbeat. And you would win. Because the people of Kentucky are being used by Rand Paul. Now, think of it. They’re saying is, oh, if he doesn’t make it, we will take him. That’s not the way it works. The people of Kentucky should get a senator that wants to represent them, not a senator where it’s a backup plan. So, if I was in Kentucky, I would run against him. Believe me, I would win. Yes. Hi. Yes.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I understand that you care a lot about vets.

TRUMP: I do, a lot.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I’m glad about that. I work as a veterans claims advocate, the disabled veterans.

TRUMP: Good.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The problem I have helping with them is that it takes over three years to process one claim.

TRUMP: Unbelievable. You hear that, it takes over three years to process one veteran’s claim.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: And my question to you is, do you think the V.A. has run out of money to help them because it’s been out —

TRUMP: No. I think they have run out of competence. They have incompetent people running it. And it starts with our senators and our congressmen and our president. And I run things properly. What I run runs properly. One of the things I will do is take care of our veterans. It’s going to be very important. You know, you are a perfect example when you say three years to process a claim that should take 24 hours. Yes, ma’am.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: On a lighter note, Boston Mayor Marty Walsh has challenged you to take the ice bucket challenge. Is that something you will do?

TRUMP: Look, he’s a clown Marty Walsh. I don’t even know who he is. This guy Marty Walsh, he spends all this time and effort and money on an Olympic bid and then he goes out and, you know, he is talking about ice bucket challenges. Get a real mayor. You know, he came out and he was strongly against — when we had the original problem with, as you know, when I was totally misquoted. Now everybody has apologized to me. Illegal immigration, I don’t like Trump’s statements. Now, everybody apologized because I turned out to be right. And you have had massive crime. You had beautiful Kate in San Francisco and so many others, even three days ago a 63-year-old woman — in fact 66-year-old woman was raped, sodomized and tortured by an illegal immigrant. And they caught him. And it’s just disgraceful what’s going on.

So I brought up — and I’m so proud of it. I brought up and I took a lot of heat that first week, week and a half. A lot of heat. They called it incoming from you people, incoming. Now so many people have apologized to me. And it has become a main stay of everybody’s campaign. The problem is they don’t know what to do about it. I do. I know how to solve the problem. And it starts with building a wall. Believe me. Okay. Yes, sir.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Governor Baker has said that some of your recent comments were reprehensible about women —


TRUMP: I don’t think he said that. No, I don’t think he said that. Let me tell you something. Jeb Bush said that on women’s health issues that he won’t fund them. He apologized. Are you okay? Jeb Bush said that on women’s health issues, he won’t fund them. Whose phone is that? You ready? Third time. Ready? Jeb Bush said that on women’s health issues, he won’t fund them. Then he said, I misspoke. I’m so sorry. I cherish women. Women will be taken care of better with a President Trump than anybody else republican or democrat. Anybody else. And you know you can look at my company. I have many women executives. They make in many cases more money, because the second question, how many do you have, many.

And I am going to be introducing them over a period of time, too. They are unbelievable executives. And they are paid almost — I think they are paid more. We’re looking into it. We’re studying it right now. But they get paid more. They are phenomenal. They are incredibly talented. And even years ago, in charge of major construction projects. I’ve had women in charge, which years ago was unheard of. So I’ve been way out in front. And Governor Baker should only dream about doing for women what I’ve done and what I will do. But on the women’s health issue, I will — there will be nobody better than Donald Trump.

It might be more. You know what it means? Whatever it takes. That’s what it means. Whatever it takes. Yes, ma’am.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Bernie Sanders has gained a lot of traction over Hillary Clinton —

TRUMP: Bernie Sanders has gained a lot of traction.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: — in New Hampshire. What do you think the voters are looking for (INAUDIBLE)

TRUMP: Well, they’re looking for real change. You know, Obama said they’re looking for a change. And look what we got. We got change. But they’re looking for something different than what they have. And you know, Bernie Sanders is not going to end up being the standard. But certainly he and I are getting by far the biggest crowds. I mean, look at the crowd tonight. Other people have 51 people, 54 people. We have 2,500 people and 1,000 people or more than that are standing outside listening to microphones. And loudspeakers. So we have had, you know, we’ve had tremendous growth. I had 15,000 in Phoenix. We’ve had, you know, every crowd is a record crowd. Every crowd is totally sold out. And he has done the same thing on the other side with a very different philosophy, to put it mildly.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Mr. Trump, Rand Paul has come out with this ad that sort of strings together comments about —


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: — healthcare and single payer healthcare and supporting Hillary Clinton. How concerned — you said your positions have evolved. But how concerned are you that people are going to —

TRUMP: I don’t think so. Look, I built a net worth of more than $10 billion. I’ve been a world class businessman. All over the world I build. I have some of the great assets of the world. And I don’t say that in a braggadocios way. That’s the thinking that our country needs to take our jobs back from China and Japan and Mexico and clean up the border, by the way, speaking of Mexico. But that’s the kind of thinking we need to take back our jobs, bring back our money, bring back our manufacturing. You take a look at China, what they have done. They have taken our money, our jobs, our base, our manufacturing. And we owe them $1.4 trillion. That’s like a magic act. They have taken everything and we owe them money.

You know, we owe right now China $1.4 trillion. It’s like a magic act. They get everything and we owe them money. Not the other way around. Because we’re led by people that don’t have a clue. Honestly, I think we’re led by stupid people. I don’t think they’re bad people. You know, it used to be they said it’s so bad it has to be that they’re bad people. I actually don’t think — I think they’re very stupid people. Our leaders don’t have a clue. They’re incompetent. And China is a great example. I met with Carl Icahn, one of the great business people. And I had dinner with him two nights ago. And I said, Carl, if O do this, I’m going to put you in charge of China and I’m going to add in Japan. And you know what? Everything is going to be just fine for us.

Going to be just fine. We have people negotiating for us that — they have no idea what they’re doing. They’re not even business people. And remember this, Bush and Hillary and all this — they have a lot of money. They raised a lot of money from my friends. I used to be one of them. I contribute to everybody. And they’re always there for me. But that’s not good for the country. That’s not good as a system. But Jeb has raised $114 million, approximately. Everybody that puts money up for Jeb Bush, it’s like he is a puppet. He is totally controlled by these people.

Jeb Bush is controlled by the people that put up the money. And so are the other candidates. I don’t want money from people. Other than small donations, because I have so many people — one woman sent $7 and other one sent one. I love that where they invest in my campaign. They invest. I don’t want that for the money. I want that because psychologically I think it’s great. But Jeb Bush has $114 million. What’s he going do with it? He’s start hitting me with ads, I guess, you know, at some point he has to. Because he’s going down the tubes. The guy is going down the tubes. There’s no energy. So, when Jeb and Hillary and all of these other candidates start spending money, remember this, that money was given by people that have total control over them. And those people, many of whom I know very well, they don’t care about him, they don’t care about the color of his hair, they don’t care anything about him. And they don’t care about the country in many cases. They only want whatever they want. And they will get plenty. Yes, sir.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Many of people who have contributed, we don’t know who they are. Would you call on Jeb Bush to have his PAC released the names of the donors?

TRUMP: They should release the names of the donors. I think we should be much more open, talking about campaign finance. I think we should be much more open. If somebody contributes a lot of money, we should know who those people are.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Citizens United, did you think that was a bad decision or did you agree with it?

TRUMP: Well, it’s not a great decision for me. And they are friends of mine. David Bossie, they’re friend of mine. Because I’m putting up my own money. So, here you have other people putting up money into other campaigns where they will have total control. A hundred percent Katie, they will have control of those people that are running for office. One of the reasons I’ve done so well in the polls is because everyone knows I’m not going to be controlled. I’m going to do what’s right for the country. No lobbyists. I know them all. I’ve hired many of them over the years. They’re very good. But when they give a million dollars or $5 million to Jeb Bush, they have total control over him. He will do like a puppet whatever they say. With me, there’s none of that.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: So, would you push for legislation to change that?

TRUMP: I love the idea of campaign finance reform. And one of the things you should do is everybody should be known. If somebody gives a million or two million or five million it should be known. And I will tell you this nonsense with PACs where they have millions of dollars raised, a hundred million dollars raised and they don’t coordinate with the other people. I mean, Bush puts his best friend in there. They don’t talk. You are not allowed to talk. Do you really believe that that doesn’t happen? Okay. They’re not allowed to talk. Okay? They play golf on Saturday, but they don’t talk about the $100 million and where they’re going to invest. Come on. We’re not babies. It’s a shame. It’s a disgrace. And what I would like to see is if you put money up, you can put money into either or both. Do whatever you want. But there has to be transparency. You have to know where the money is coming from. And that would help.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: What about limits —

TRUMP: Limits, okay.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: What about Al Gore running, have you heard about that?

TRUMP: I would love to have — I think the concept of a woman running with me would be fabulous. Too soon to say. It’s too soon to say.

Well, I think that they will be probably involved at some point, because there’s a lot of pressure on Hillary right now. It has been brutal. It has been brutal for Hillary. And I think at some point she’s perhaps not going to be able to run. She’s going to have to end her campaign. That seems to be the thinking by so many. And I was saying that two months ago. And everyone thought, well, you, you know, you are not right. But it looks to me like what they have done — this is top secret stuff. Look, General Petraeus, his life was destroyed with a tiny fraction of what she’s done. So, it’s very unfair to him if they’re going to destroy him over doing by comparison nothing, I don’t see how she can run. I think she has got much bigger problems than running for office. Yes, ma’am?


TRUMP: Okay, last question. We will do two more questions. Go ahead.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: — Giving donations is bad for the country. Does that mean when you were giving donations to politicians, you were doing something bad for the country?

TRUMP: No, I don’t think donations when people don’t know who is donating are good. I think the concept of donations should be people should know who they are and who is contributing. I would rather see that. Don’t forget, while I’m friends with Citizens United and I like David Bossie who is the head of it all. I love him. I think he’s a great guy. But to me that doesn’t help me. Because I’m spending my own money. Okay? So, on a personal basis, I don’t love it. I think there should be better transparency. And I think when the money comes in, you should be able to use the money and do what you want. Because that’s what they do anyway. Everybody does it, unfortunately, not us because I’m not doing it. But these candidates are doing it illegally. Because they’re telling the people that are running the PACs exactly what to do. And if anybody thinks they’re not, they’re children.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You are headed to the Iowa State Fair next week —

TRUMP: I will be doing jury duty — can you believe? I’ll be doing jury duty on Monday morning. I knew you would ask me that question, Katie. I will be doing jury duty on Monday morning in New York City. UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Criminal court or district court?

TRUMP: I don’t know. It’s one of the courts.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Are you looking forward to it?

TRUMP: Yes. I’m looking forward to it. I think it’s fine. It’s going to be rolled out soon. Thank you very much. I will see you.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Are you still going to give free helicopter rides?

TRUMP: I don’t know. Are we giving helicopter rides? I think so. To the kids.

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Jeb Bush ‘Evolves’ From One Lie To The Next

Bush, Iraq

When you lie a lot, it becomes hard to keep your story straight. Like Brother W used to, Bush III keeps those contradictory answers coming. Back in May, Jeb Bush announced that knowing what we know now about Iraq, he would absolutely still have invaded Iraq.

Bush III’s truth was a lie. As is illustrated in “Iraq Liars & Deniers,” we most certainly knew then what we know now.

Jeb was soon shamed into retracting that bit of insanity (which reflected his parallel reality). But lying will land you in hot water, again and again. So Jeb’s back to the original position, which is also his truth. By Politico’s telling:

Jeb Bush, wrestling with his brother’s legacy of the Iraq War for the second time in three days, again sought to cast blame on the Obama administration for its failure to achieve a “fragile but secure” peace in the region that has been overrun by ISIS militants.

“I’ll tell you, taking out Saddam Hussein turned out to be a pretty good deal,” the former Florida governor told a crowd of roughly 200 people who attended a forum on national security at St. Ambrose College.

Bush’s efforts to present himself as a strong, sensible commander in chief are complicated by the unpopular war his brother waged in Iraq — a war the likely Democratic nominee, Hillary Clinton, supported at the time — and by his own tendency to view it in a more favorable light. …


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Kurdish Separatists: They Fight ISIS, But Threaten Statists

Federalism, Iraq, Just War, Middle East, Nationhood

The Turks lump together as terrorists both the Islamic State and the paramilitary wing of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party, or PKK, which is fighting ISIS. “Kurds in Iraq and Syria are among the most formidable opponents of the extremist group.” And the US agrees. Americans, after all, hate separatists. It reminds them of their lost right of secession, removed by force by Abe Lincoln. Born of a loose confederation of independent states, Americans now favor a strong, overweening central state, and they want to see the same in the tribal lands of the Middle East.

Turkey’s military has been ramping up attacks on Kurdish separatists since last month. The government decided to join the U.S.-led military campaign against Islamic State while simultaneously launching assaults on the PKK, which is listed as a terrorist organization by the U.S. and Turkey.


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UPDATED: Donald On The Oracular Krauthammer (The Interview)

Elections, Iraq, Neoconservatism

“Charles Krauthammer is a totally overrated person … I’ve never met him … He’s a totally overrated guy, doesn’t know what he’s doing. He was totally in favor of the war in Iraq. He wanted to go into Iraq and he wanted to stay there forever. These are totally overrated people.”—Donald Trump, yesterday.

From this writer’s perspective, Trump is being charitable.


UPDATED: The Donald Trump-Katy Tur Interview.

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Ask #Bush Why The #IraqiMilitary Won’t Fight

Federalism, Foreign Policy, Iran, Iraq, Nationhood, Neoconservatism, Pseudo-history

“Ask Bush Why The Iraqi Military Won’t Fight” is the current column, now on An excerpt:

… The ineptness of the reconstituted Iraqi Army is nothing new. In 2006, then-Sen. Hillary Clinton demanded to know when the “Iraqi government and the Iraqi Army would step up to the task.” “I have heard over and over again, that the government must do this, the Iraqi Army must do that,” griped Clinton to Gen. John P. Abizaid, then top American military commander in the Middle East. “Can you offer us more than the hope that the Iraqi government and the Iraqi Army will step up to the task?”

Indeed, the War Party is in the habit of thrashing about in an ahistorical void—or creating its own reality, as warbot Karl Rove, George Bush’s muse, is notorious for saying. The neoconservative creed as disgorged by Rove deserves repeating:

“We’re an empire now, and when we act, we create our own reality. And while you’re studying that reality—judiciously, as you will—we’ll act again, creating other new realities, which you can study too, and that’s how things will sort out. We’re history’s actors … and you, all of you, will be left to just study what we do.”

The lowly “you” Rove reserved for “the reality-based community” (guilty).

Curiously, a military that has done nothing but flee before the opposition ever since the Americans commandeered Iraq, had fought and won a protracted war against Iran, under Saddam Hussein. The thing we currently call the Iraqi military has been unable and unwilling to fight the wars America commands it to fight.


For one, Bush’s envoy to Iraq, Paul Bremer, made the decision to dissolve the Iraqi Army and civil service, early in 2003, with the blessing of Bush at whose pleasure Bremer served. Bush’s minions viewed the dissolution of the Iraqi Army as part of the “De-Ba’thification” process. …

… Another dynamic is at play in the region besides the Sunni-Shia divide. It is that between the forces of centralization and the forces of decentralization. …

Read the rest. “Ask Bush Why The Iraqi Military Won’t Fight” is now on

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