George W. in the Garden of Gethsemane

January 28, 2002 at 7:53 pm
Contributed by:

[Sorry for this one being included in the 2004-01-30 issue of GRL. It got incorrectly dated when I put it into the blog system. Hey, one error out of 389 ain’t too bad. –C]

Hey all,

been a while since I posted anything to the poli-spam list, but don’t
for a
minute think that I haven’t still been thinking and studying about
questions. I hope you have been too!

Here’s another classic, freshly
minted, from Michael Moore.


From: Michael Moore []
Tuesday, January 29, 2002 10:21 AM
George W. in the Garden of Gethsemane



“George W. in the
Garden of Gethsemane”
An Open Letter to George W. Bush from Michael

Dear George,

When it’s all over in a couple months, and
you’re packing up your pretzels
and Spot and heading back to Texas, what will
be your biggest regret? Not
getting out more often and seeing the sights
around Rock Creek Park? Never
once visiting the newly-renovated IKEA in
Woodbridge, Virginia? Or buying
your way to the White House with money from a
company that committed the
biggest corporate swindle in American history? I
got a feeling you didn’t
miss much by not spending an entire Saturday
afternoon assembling a Swedish
bookcase — but you should have known that
there was no way you would ever
finish your term by hopping into bed with
Kenneth Lay.

It’s kind of sad when you think about it. Here you were —
the most popular
president ever! — the recipient of so much good will from
your fellow
Americans after September 11, and then you had to go and blow it.
You just
couldn’t stay away from your old cowpoke friend from Texas, Kenneth

Kenny has always been there for you. You needed a way to fly around
to all
the primaries and campaign stops in the 2000 election — so Kenny gave
his corporate jet. Did you tell the voters when you arrived in each
that the bird you flew in on was from a billionaire who was
conspiring to give the bird to all his employees and investors? He
flew you
around America on the Enron company jet, and for that favor you
down on tarmac after tarmac to tell your fellow citizens that you
“going to restore dignity to the White House, the people’s house.” You
this standing in front of an Enron jet!

Man, you loved Lay so
much, you not only affectionately referred to him as
“Kenny Boy,” you
interrupted an important campaign trip in April, 2000, to
fly back to Houston
for the Astro’s opening day at the new Enron Field —
just so you could watch
Kenny Boy Lay throw out the first pitch. How

I mean, you
loved this man so intensely that, when you were awarded a set
of keys the
Supreme Court had made for you so you could live in the White
House, you
invited Kenny Boy to set up shop — at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue!
interviewed those who would hold high-level Energy Department positions
your administration.

You not only let Kenny Boy decide who would head the
regulatory agency that
oversaw Enron, you let him hand-pick the new chairman
of the Securities and
Exchange Commission — a former lawyer for his
accountant, Arthur Andersen!
Kenny and the boys at Andersen also worked to
make sure that accounting
firms would be exempt from numerous regulations and
would not be held
liable for any “funny bookkeeping” (don’t you wish you were

Then rest of Kenny Boy’s time was spent next
door with his old buddy, Dick
Cheney (Enron and Halliburton, as you’ll
recall, got the big contracts from
your dad to “rebuild” Kuwait after the
Gulf War). Lay and Dick formed an
“energy task force” (Operation Enduring
Graft) which put together the
county’s new “energy policy.” This policy then
went on to shut down every
light bulb and juicer in the state of California.
And guess who made out
like bandits while “trading” the energy California was
in desperate need
of? Kenny Boy and Enron! No wonder Big Dick doesn’t want to
turn over the
files about those special meetings with Lay!

The only
thing that surprises me more than all the Enron henchmen who ended
up in your
cabinet and administration is how our lazy media just rolled
over and didn’t
report it. The list of Enron people on your payroll is
impressive. Lawrence
Lindsey, your chief economic advisor? A former advisor
at Enron! Treasury
Secretary Paul O’Neill? Former CEO of Alcoa, whose
lobbying firm, Vinson and
Elkins, was the #3 contributor to the your
campaign! Who is Vinson and
Elkins? The law firm representing Enron! Who is
Alcoa? The top polluter in
Texas. Timothy White, the Secretary of the Army?
A former vice-chair of Enron
Energy! Robert Zoellick, your Federal Trade
Representative? A former advisor
at Enron! Karl Rove, your main man at the
White House? He owned a
quarter-million dollars of Enron stock.

Then there’s the Enron lawyer you
have nominated to be a federal judge in
Texas, the Enron lobbyist who is your
chair of the Republican Party, the
two Enron officials who now work for House
Majority Leader Tom DeLay, and
the wife of Texas Senator Phil Gramm who sits
on Enron’s board. And there’s
the aforementioned Mr. Pitt, the former Arthur
Andersen attorney whose job
it is now as SEC head to oversee the stock
markets. George, it never stops!
My fingers are getting tired typing all this
up — and there’s lots more.

Don’t get me wrong, George — I do not think
you’re an evil man. You don’t
need any crap from people like me — heck, you
got mother-in-law problems!
Now, I have a very good relationship with my
mother-in-law, but then, I
never told her to put $8,000 of her money into a
company my administration
knew was going belly-up.

You say you didn’t
know? Your bag man — Don Evans, the man who squeezed
all that money for you
from Enron as your campaign finance chairman (and is
now collecting his
reward as your Commerce Secretary) — has admitted that
he got calls from
Enron begging for help last year because they were going
under. Didn’t he
tell you this?

Then Paul O’Neill, your Treasury Secretary, admitted that
Enron and Kenny
Boy called him, too, for some special favors to save Enron.
Didn’t he
mention this to you? They claim to have called your chief of staff,
Card, and he said he didn’t bother to inform you. What does
mother-in-law think about these boys her daughter’s husband consorts

I love watching the O’Neill and Evans show. What a couple of
They’re, like, all proud of themselves for “not doing Enron any
Actually,  I think it’s more like they didn’t do your
favors. Enron got LOTS of favors. And why not? Kenny Boy
has been your
number one financial backer since you ran for governor. No
other American
or Saudi has given you more money than Kenny Boy and his gang
Enron.  O’Neill, Evans, Cheney, Energy Secretary Spencer Abraham —
ALL of
them gave Lay and Enron special favors from day one. The New York
last May was so concerned about how Kenny had the run of the place
Pennsylvania Ave.), they referred to Lay as the “shadow advisor to

And what advice! Who was it that wanted you to
deregulate the energy
industry further? Kenny Boy! Who was it that convinced
you to explore the
sick idea of PRIVATIZING our water supply and then allow
corporations to “trade” it in the future? Kenny Boy! Who was it that
Social Security to be tied to the stock market? Yup, Kenny Boy!
if you will, what would have happened to our precious Social
Security funds
had they been invested in Enron stocks as you, George,
suggested be done
during your campaign as yuppies everywhere clucked along in
agreement over
that genius idea.)

O’Neill’s and Evans’s admission that
they “did nothing” when Enron told
them of the company’s shell game and
impending collapse is reason enough
for you and yours to hit the Beltway and
never return to that sacred trust
we call Our American Government. They are
proud of “doing nothing?” By
doing nothing, millions of Americans have been
swindled. Tens of thousands
have lost their jobs. Thousands more have lost
their savings and their
retirement. Yet your cabinet secretaries gloat over
what a “good job” you
and they did by “doing nothing.”

Let me ask you
this: If someone was setting a house on fire, and they
called you to help
them set it on fire, and you said no you wouldn’t help
them — BUT then you
also DIDN’T call 911 and inform the police that
someone was going to burn
down a house, do you think you would have
committed a crime?

Of course
you would have! You had prior knowledge and then you knowingly
purposefully HID this information from the authorities and the people
in the house! You only admitted that you knew a house was going to
be torched
when you were confronted by the police. Are you complicit? Yes!
Are you an
accessory? Yes! Who would even think of going around boasting,
“Hey, look
what a great guy I am — a friend of mine told me he was going
to commit an
act of arson, and then I decided NOT to tell ANYONE about

Enron and Kenny Boy bought your silence and the
silence of your cabinet
members. You yourself didn’t have to actually raid
the 401(k) accounts of
those poor people in Houston (many of whom probably
voted for you every
time your name was on a ballot). All you had to do was
remain silent,
change the government regulations that let them get away with
it, and
install their hand-picked cronies to sit on the “oversight” boards
were supposed to be keeping an eye on them.

While doing all
this, you told the American people that these rich friends
of yours were not
getting any special breaks — when, in fact, Enron had
already scammed their
way out of paying NO taxes in four out of the last
five years. Your economic
“stimulus” bill that you got the House to pass
after 9-11 had a section that
would give Enron a gift of $250 million of
our tax money. You were pushing
this bill in November and December, long
after your administration knew that
Enron was raiding the vault and
screwing its workers and

You and your Republican friends are quick to point out that
Enron had their
claws into the Democrats as well. Yes, they did, and thank
you for making
the case why we not only need an alternative to the current
make-up of the
Democratic Party, we need private money removed from our
electoral process

But, George, let’s be real — the Democrats
only got a pittance from Enron
compared to the millions you and the
Republicans received. Democrats just
don’t have the killer instinct to do
anything right, and they certainly
don’t know much about making money the
old-fashioned way, one off-shore tax
shelter at a time. I would expect
nothing less from a Party that couldn’t
even put their candidate in the White
House after he had already won the

The Democrats are like a
Yugo — you know it won’t last long or work well,
but it will occasionally
get the job done. Fat cats know they can buy the
Democrats at discount
prices, and so they do. Anyone who tries to deflect
this scandal away from
you, George, or away from the Republicans, or away
from the whole dirty way
we elect our leaders, is someone who is
desperately trying to cling to what’s
left of a very crooked system that
has to go and go now.

The saddest
part of this whole affair was the day the scandal was revealed
— and you
denied that you even knew your good friend, Kenneth Lay. “Ken
who?” you said.
Oh, he’s just some businessman from Texas. “Heck, he backed
my opponent for
governor, Ann Richards!” was your way of trying to deflect
the truth that was
hitting you like a Mack truck. You knew that he, in
fact, endorsed YOU and
gave you THREE times the money Ann Richards ever saw
from him.

hardly ever talk to the guy, you said. You were like Peter in the Garden
Gethsemane, denying he knew Jesus, three times. And then the *censored*
crowed. And
Peter felt shame and ran away.

What shame do you feel tonight, George,
for the lies you have told? What
shame do you feel using the dead of 9-11 as
a cover for your actions,
hoping that our sorrow for those lost souls and our
fear of being killed by
terrorists would distract us from what your boys and
Kenny Boy were up to
during those horrific weeks in September and

It was during those very days, while the rest of us were in
shock and
sadness, that the executives at Enron were selling off their stock
shifting assets to their 900 phony partnerships overseas. Did they
the remains of the dead being pulled from the rubble while they
downloading their millions, or were their eyes glued only to the
third of the TV screen as the stock ticker with the rigged Enron
crawled across the images of firemen desperate, in tears, to find
fallen brothers?

The country was behind you when you said you
were fighting the evildoers
who did this. In fact, all the while, the real
fight your friends at Enron
were conducting was the fight against the clock,
to see how fast they could
transfer all the loot to their personal accounts
and run away. Those were
the evildoers, George, and you knew it. And because
you, by design or
negligence, allowed this to happen, it is time for you to
resign. The *censored*
has crowed for the last time.

At the very least, your
mother-in-law deserves better.


(revised ranking)

– – – – – –

Axis of Just As Evil

January 26, 2002 at 1:39 am
Contributed by:


Bitter after being snubbed for membership in the “Axis of Evil,” Libya, China, and Syria today announced they had formed the “Axis of Just as Evil,” which they said would be way eviler than that stupid Iran-Iraq-North Korea axis President Bush warned of his State of the Union address.

N. Korea Wondering What It Has To Do To Get US Attention

“Everyone in my country refers to me as ‘Dear Leader.’ Is that not disturbingly cultish?”Kim continued. “I do not understand why President Bush is so much more interested in Saddam than me. I’m a strange, despotic, unpredictable madman, too, you know.”

New Book Alleges that U.S. Was in Negotiations to Do a Deal with Taliban

January 12, 2002 at 3:20 pm
Contributed by:

Check this out.


Explosive New Book Published in France Alleges that U.S. Was in Negotiations to Do a Deal with Taliban

Aired January 8, 2002 – 07:34 ET


PAULA ZAHN, CNN ANCHOR: Time to check in with ambassador-in- residence, Richard Butler, this morning. An explosive new book published in France alleges that the United States was in negotiations to do a deal with the Taliban for an oil pipeline in Afghanistan.

Joining us right now is Richard Butler to shed some light on this new book. He is the former chief U.N. weapons inspector. He is now on the Council on Foreign Relations and our own ambassador-in- residence — good morning.


ZAHN: Boy, if any of these charges are true…


ZAHN: … this…


ZAHN: … is really big news.

BUTLER: I agree.

ZAHN: Start off with what your understanding is of what is in this book — the most explosive charge.

BUTLER: The most explosive charge, Paula, is that the Bush administration — the present one, just shortly after assuming office slowed down FBI investigations of al Qaeda and terrorism in Afghanistan in order to do a deal with the Taliban on oil — an oil pipeline across Afghanistan.

ZAHN: And this book points out that the FBI’s deputy director, John O’Neill, actually resigned because he felt the U.S. administration was obstructing…

BUTLER: A proper…

ZAHN: … the prosecution of terrorism.

BUTLER: Yes, yes, a proper intelligence investigation of terrorism. Now, you said if, and I affirmed that in responding to you. We have to be careful here. These are allegations. They’re worth airing and talking about, because of their gravity. We don’t know if they are correct. But I believe they should be investigated, because Central Asian oil, as we were discussing yesterday, is potentially so important. And all prior attempts to have a pipeline had to be done through Russia. It had to be negotiated with Russia.

Now, if there is to be a pipeline through Afghanistan, obviating the need to deal with Russia, it would also cost less than half of what a pipeline through Russia would cost. So financially and politically, there’s a big prize to be had. A pipeline through Afghanistan down to the Pakistan coast would bring out that Central Asian oil easier and more cheaply.

ZAHN: (UNINTELLIGIBLE) as you spoke about this yesterday, we almost immediately got a call from “The New York Times.”

BUTLER: Right.

ZAHN: They want you to write an op-ed piece on this over the weekend.

BUTLER: Right, and which I will do.

ZAHN: But let’s come back to this whole issue of what John O’Neill, this FBI agent…

BUTLER: Right.

ZAHN: … apparently told the authors of this book. He is alleging that — what — the U.S. government was trying to protect U.S. oil interests? And at the same time, shut off the investigation of terrorism to allow for that to happen?

BUTLER: That’s the allegation that instead of prosecuting properly an investigation of terrorism, which has its home in Afghanistan as we now know, or one of its main homes, that was shut down or slowed down in order to pursue oil interests with the Taliban. The people who we have now bombed out of existence, and this not many months ago. The book says that the negotiators said to the Taliban, you have a choice. You have a carpet of gold, meaning an oil deal, or a carpet of bombs. That’s what the book alleges.

ZAHN: Well, I know you’re going to be doing your own independent homework on this…


ZAHN: … to see if you can confirm any of this. Let’s move on to the whole issue of Iraq. The deputy defense secretary, Paul Wolfowitz, at one time was considered one of those voices within the administration…


ZAHN: … that was pushing for moving beyond Afghanistan. He seemed to back off a little from that yesterday.


ZAHN: What do you read through the tea leaves here?

BUTLER: A very interesting report that the administration will focus on the Philippines, Yemen, Somalia as places where there are al Qaeda cells. But the word Iraq wasn’t used by the man who was the chief hawk — used as a, you know, as a future target. So what I interpret from that is this: That very likely our allies have been saying to us, this is too hard. This is really serious. Be careful. Saddam is essentially contained at the moment. Don’t start, you know, a bigger problem either in the Arab world or in the coalition by going after him. And Wolfowitz, it seems, has probably accepted that.

ZAHN: A quick thought on the Israelis intercepting this latest armed shipment? What that means? You’ve got to do it in about 15 seconds.

BUTLER: It’s extraordinarily serious, because it seems to have been tied to Yasser Arafat himself. It needs to be further investigated, but you know, Paula, the potentiality that this could once again prove an impediment to resume peace negotiations is really quite serious.

ZAHN: Thank you as usual for covering so much territory. Richard Butler, see you same time, same place tomorrow morning.


ZAHN: We appreciate your insights.


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