Thursday, October 07, 2004

TODAY'S TOP FIVE: Implausible deniability.

For Some People, Even Cancer Is Too Good Big surprise: E. Howard Hunt is still alive! Not such a big surprise: He's a total bastard even today. Remorseless, scorning regret, the man who botched both the break-in of Daniel Ellsberg's psychiatrist's office and the Watergate burglary is giving interviews on the occasion of his 86th birthday. Elton John recently said that the reason so many people in the world hate America is because of guys like Dennis Miller. I disagree; it's because of guys like E. Howard Hunt. Here is Mr. Hunt's reaction to a question about the Guatamalan civil war touched off by the fascist coup in 1954 that he helped orchestrate, a civil war that involved the massacre of more than 200,000 civilians: "Deaths? What deaths?"

The Daily Mayhem: Pakistan Edition Just days after a Shi'ite mosque was bombed in Pakistan, killing 30, a memorial service for a deceased Sunni militant was also bombed, with at least 40 dead. The leader of a banned Shi'ite organization denies responsibility for the attack, but troops had to be deployed to clear the streets of thousands of Sunnis demanding revenge.

The Daily Mayhem: Haiti Edition The city of Port au Prince has been wracked by violence since militant supporters of ousted President Jean Bertrande Aristide launched "Operation Baghdad," an effort to overthrow the U.S.-backed government that has involved the beheadings of 19 so far. Not noted by the article is that the conflict in Haiti is swiftly taking on the trappings of a religious war, with supporters of Aristide predominantly Catholic and supporters of the U.S.-backed regime - which includes numerous officials from the Duvalier dictatorship - drawing support from charismatic Protestant groups.

I Have Not Supported the Torture of Suspects in at Least a Week Some more flip-flopping from "President" Bush: Although initially the White House supported a bill introduced this month by hapless porker Dennis Hastert (R-Illinois) that would change current laws to allow deportation of suspects to countries that use torture, now Bush has backed off, condemning the bill. This has pissed off Hastert, who notes that the bill was only introduced at the request of the Department of Homeland Security. Ah, the Republican Party: a well-oiled machine, I tells ya!

Actual Americans Alert! A tiny library in tiny Deming, Washington has so far successfully blocked the FBI's attempt to get the names of every patron who took out a book on Osama Bin Laden, citing the privacy rights of everyone who takes out books at the library. I say bravo, but note well: If the FBI had invoked the USA PATRIOT Act to get the records, instead of trying to get them through a grand jury, the library would have no choice but to hand them over.

-Consider Arms