BRANDOLAND: Talking to God...For You!

Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Winter Wonderland

Big news...and a quick follow-up to yesterday's post.

LRon's "Winter Wonderland" (at Hollywood & McCadden) is up and running again - just in time for Xmas.

"And there was much rejoicing."

I predict big lines, and, yes, "personality tests" are available next door.

Listen to the lyrics of the quasi-carols, people: They contain important messages!

"On the day that we finally learn to trust each other...we will trust each other." (Or something like that.)

"Man cannot know what he does not know."

Moving on...

Phenomenal post on Talking Points Memo re: Mitchell Wade, "formerly CEO and founder of MZM, Inc., the man whose sweetheart purchase of (Duke) Cunningham's house was the thread that started Duke's skein of corruption unravelling."

(Cunningham went down in flames yesterday.)

A must read, b/c Josh gets into Wade's relationship with Rep. Virgil Goode (R-VA).
Goode was the principal sponsor of a provision in 2003 defense legislation that called for the creation of a military center in his district, known as the Foreign Supplier Assessment Center, which MZM was hired to run, said a senior defense official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because of the issue's sensitivity.

The official added that the center, which is meant to check on the ownership of foreign companies that contract with the Defense Department, will do useful work, but was not a Pentagon priority and was not requested by the Defense Department.
It was mandated by Goode on MZM's behalf, the official said.
The question is this: What did Congressman Goode "get" from MZM?

He did get some pretty decent "campaign contributions."

Read the whole post.

* * *

Hopefully, you've read Seymour Hersh's latest article in the New Yorker (Up in the Air).

Simply put - Hersh details the chaos within the Bush Administration re: Iraq and the debate over "troop withdrawl."

Excerpts:
Current and former military and intelligence officials have told me that the President remains convinced that it is his personal mission to bring democracy to Iraq, and that he is impervious to political pressure, even from fellow Republicans.

They also say that he disparages any information that conflicts with his view of how the war is proceeding.

Bush’s closest advisers have long been aware of the religious nature of his policy commitments. In recent interviews, one former senior official, who served in Bush’s first term, spoke extensively about the connection between the President’s religious faith and his view of the war in Iraq.

After the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, the former official said, he was told that Bush felt that “God put me here” to deal with the war on terror.
"NO I DIDN'T."

Apparently, he thinks you did.

"I DIDN'T."

Well...
The President’s belief was fortified by the Republican sweep in the 2002 congressional elections; Bush saw the victory as a purposeful message from God that “he’s the man,” the former official said.
"AW, MAN."

You see?

"YEAH, BUT...JESUS...I WANTED THE GUY TO BE...MAJOR LEAGUE BASEBALL COMMISIONER. NOT THE PRESIDENT."

He didn't hear you.

"HE HAS A HABIT OF DOING THAT, DOESN'T HE?"

Yep.
Publicly, Bush depicted his reëlection as a referendum on the war; privately, he spoke of it as another manifestation of divine purpose.

The former senior official said that after the election he made a lengthy inspection visit to Iraq and reported his findings to Bush in the White House: “I said to the President, ‘We’re not winning the war.’ And he asked, ‘Are we losing?’ I said, ‘Not yet.’ ”

The President, he said, “appeared displeased” with that answer.

“I tried to tell him,” the former senior official said. “And he couldn’t hear it.”
"YOU SEE? THAT DRIVES ME CRAZY."

Me, too.
“The President is more determined than ever to stay the course,” the former defense official said.

“He doesn’t feel any pain. Bush is a believer in the adagePeople may suffer and die, but the Church advances.’”
"WHAT THE HELL DOES THAT MEAN?!"

I don't know: Very old school. Sounds like...Knights Templar vs the Pope's army kinda stuff.

"GOT IT."
He said that the President had become more detached, leaving more issues to Karl Rove and Vice-President Cheney.

“They keep him in the gray world of religious idealism, where he wants to be anyway,” the former defense official said.

Bush’s public appearances, for example, are generally scheduled in front of friendly audiences, most often at military bases. Four decades ago, President Lyndon Johnson, who was also confronted with an increasingly unpopular war, was limited to similar public forums.

“Johnson knew he was a prisoner in the White House,” the former official said, “but Bush has no idea.”
Okay - fine - typical stuff - we've heard these stories before - Bush is detached from reality - believes he has a "calling from on high" - he's a dry drunk - pops off at people - doesn't read - never hears bad news - white knuckle alcoholism making him nuts - the Emperor has no clothes - yada yada.

However...

At the end of the article, you'll find this key bit of info:
Meanwhile, as the debate over troop reductions continues, the covert war in Iraq has expanded in recent months to Syria.
Hey now.
A composite American Special Forces team, known as an S.M.U., for “special-mission unit,” has been ordered, under stringent cover, to target suspected supporters of the Iraqi insurgency across the border.

(The Pentagon had no comment.)

“It’s a powder keg,” the Pentagon consultant said of the tactic. “But, if we hit an insurgent network in Iraq without hitting the guys in Syria who are part of it, the guys in Syria would get away. When you’re fighting an insurgency, you have to strike everywhere—and at once.”
Entiendes?

We're messing around in Syria.

"Mark it '8,' Dude."

More later...

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