April 29, 2006

Quick Republican Round-up

They’re in charge of your entire federal government, so it pays to keep an eye on them. What have they been up to lately?

F.D.A. Criminal Inquiry

Bush’s ex-head of the FDA - the one who resigned in September - the one who allowed politics to trump science in his fight to delay OTC approval for the morning after pill is now the subject of a criminal investigation.

Dr. Lester M. Crawford, the former commissioner of food and drugs, is under criminal investigation by a federal grand jury over accusations of financial improprieties and false statements to Congress, his lawyer said Friday.

I love how these people keep their promises, too:

Before Dr. Crawford’s confirmation, the secretary of health and human services, Michael O. Leavitt, promised that the F.D.A. would act on the Plan B application by September 2005, a promise that led two Democratic senators, Hillary Rodham Clinton of New York and Patty Murray of Washington, to relent in their efforts to delay the nomination. But after he was confirmed, Dr. Crawford announced an indefinite delay that has remained in effect.

Where’s The Outrage Over Spying?

That’s the question that Republican Senator Arlen Specter asks.

Democratic Rep. Jane Harman (Calif.) has her own comments as well.

Harman, one of the few House members to receive briefings on the NSA program, said she believes in the program’s approach but argued unsuccessfully on the floor Wednesday for a measure requiring greater congressional review.

“I do not support violating the law or the Constitution,” she said. “Enhanced security without respect for law gives away the very values we are fighting to defend, and I believe that the program . . . can and must fully comply with the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act and with our Constitution.”

Kudos to Specter! Antikudos to fellow party members who aren’t listening to him.

New information shows that the Bush administration used secret searches over nine thousand times in 2005. These searches were of bank, telephone, credit card and Internet information.

Rush Limbaugh Arrested


McGovern arrested in a protest to raise awareness of help needed in Darfur.
Limbaugh arrested for fraud.

Republicans Suggest Buying Your Vote For $100

Well, now we know what your vote is worht to Republicans. About 2 weeks worth of gas, or so.

Bill Frist and the Republicans that control your government have proposed sending every taxpayer a check for $100 coincidentally a couple of months before the election. The expensive, tepmorary, nonsensical plan will only look good to idiots, and that’s what the Republicans are banking on, apparently. The idiot vote. Which says a lot about their opinion of the American people.

A plan with a hole so big you can drive through it: not all taxpayers drive cars. So are they trying to actually rebate gas taxes or buy votes? So tough, this question!

Tony Snow Is A Big Ole Creationist

That’s right. Scott McClellan’s replacement, Tony Snow, is rather partial to Creation.

If only his new employers had some Intelligent Design up their sleeves. But, alas. He’s gone from the people who distort the news to the people who just completely make it up out of whole cloth. Congrats on the new challenge, Tony!

Bonus: Republican Sex Scandal

In case you’re interested, Randy “Duke” Cunningham is in the news again as the FBI investigates how weird his bribery involvement got:

Wade is cooperating with investigators as part of his plea agreement in February. He has told them that Brent Wilkes, a San Diego defense contractor who has been identified as a co-conspirator, secured prostitutes, limousines and suites at two Washington hotels for Cunningham, the officials said. They spoke on condition of anonymity because the investigation is continuing.

Republican government. It’s all just wacky fun!!!

Posted by James at April 29, 2006 1:54 PM
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Gosh. "Personal responsibility" sure is complicated.

Posted by: Julie at April 30, 2006 1:23 PM

The whole Dr. Crawford thing is troubling. I understand greed. I don't condone it, but I understand it. The whole issue of slow rolling approvals because of potential lobbying bothers me a great deal. That his attorney is instructing him to take the Fifth is even more troubling.

I had not followed this story -- only caught a snippet. Thanks for the heads-up.

You're now on my Pluck list!

Posted by: George at April 30, 2006 11:18 PM

Glad I'm on your list. My blog is where I let it all hang out. And I even get hyperbolic now and again.

Posted by: James at May 1, 2006 2:07 PM

As long as you don't get hyperbaric, I think we're okay. :)

I wish I could say I was shocked by all these stories, but corruption with respect to this administration has become so commonplace. It would take something big to shock me, like Bush admitting he made a mistake and specifying what it was.

By the way, the Republican $100 check idea is incredibly lame, but the Democratic alternative is not much better from a monetary perspective. From a logic perspective and a symbolism perspective, it's top notch. But rolling back a tax of less than 20 cents a gallon for two months is going to put less in people's pockets.

To me, it is a way of the Democrats saying, "We're doing everything in our power. For the rest of the equation, look to big oil, which equals the Republican party."

It's also a good way of rolling back some of the oil company giveaways.

Posted by: briwei at May 1, 2006 2:45 PM

The oil company giveaways are a problem, for certain. But I don't know that the government can do anythign directly right now abotu oil prices. What should be done is to stop giving the oil companies breaks and to start encouraging research into alternative sources of energy rather than just talking about it.

Yeah - the Democrats' proposal was no better as far as its effectiveness, but it was far better from the standpoint of not being an attemt to buy votes. Sending taxpayers a check is a joke.

Posted by: James at May 1, 2006 4:55 PM

Quite so. Their attempt was closer to the subject at hand, but still smacked more of making the other side look bad than solving the problem.

I have some concrete things that could be done to move us in the right direction.

* Shift the tax breaks oil companies get to alternatve energy development. If Exxon wants to develop a wind farm or some underwater turbines, there may be money in that.
* Close the gas guzzler loophole.
* Tighten up the rules about businesses being allowed to write off SUV purchases as "trucks"

I have other ideas too, but some of those could be abused to infring on rights, so I don't see them as viable just yet.

Posted by: briwei at May 1, 2006 11:43 PM

Sounds like a good start. You have my vote.

Posted by: James at May 1, 2006 11:57 PM

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