Caller Knocks Over The Proverbial Water Cooler

sex scandal

Of course, at least one caller to the Diane Rehm show, on NPR, knocks the cooler over every day Diane Rehm is actually on her own show. A multitude of Americans have been asking this question ever since the invasion of Iraq. I just thought I’d add to the repetition, since the call happened this morning, in hopes of nudging my fellow citizens into some kind of conversation at the water cooler that isn’t about dancing with stars, or the latest sex scandal manufactured for the US.

The caller refers to the latest BIG AMERICAN SEX SCANDAL before going where she really wants to go.

(listen here at about 42 minutes in)

All right. To San Francisco, Calif. Good morning, Denise.

Good morning, Diane. My question is going back to the GSA scandal…


…you know, with them going to Las Vegas. And my point is that where is the outrage over a manufactured war and the cherry-picked intelligence and the trillions of dollars spent and that hundred, maybe 200,000 Iraqi citizens and thousands of American lives and tens of thousands of young men and women living their lives as amputees or with head trauma. Where are the pallets of cash that went missing in Iraq? The bungles and irresponsible way that the Bush administration funded those wars, where does this debt come from? Where is the outrage about that?


It’s a great question. I do think one of the things that’s been really striking to me about this election year is how little Afghanistan and the on-going wars have been as part of the debate. And I think that may intensify as we get closer to the general election, but you have a president whose policy has more in line with Republicans. And I think Democrats thought — that they thought it was gonna be when he came into office.

He’s actually have been fairly hawkish about his foreign policy, and you have a progressive left that is not particularly organized or willing to go after the president in any kind of coordinated way. I think there’s been a willful silence in the Democratic Party of unity behind the president on this. And it has been surprisingly not an issue in this election year so far.

No doubt about it, $822,751 is a lot of taxpayers money to be spending on pleasure seeking, but trillions of dollars, crippled and dead soldiers are probably a little more noteworthy on the eve of memorial day, which most working Americans will spend – uh – working.

Did you notice how Susan Davis tried desperately to steer the conversation towards Obama and the progressive left’s failings. Well, I’ve learned not to expect much from “USA Today” and always turn off the radio whenever that other Susan from “USA Today” fills in for Diane.

The entire American media is a cesspool, except for NPR and PBS, which gives us a window of truth some of the time. I’ve been listening a lot more lately, and I, mostly, like the national and local fare.

  1. #1 by Larry Bergan on May 26, 2012 - 4:33 am

    Almost every person who voted for Obama will admit that he hasn’t lived up to their expectations – who could -, however, when you consider that he put the war budget on the books while Bush hid it, It’s pretty hard to fault him on his – well – budget.

    I think I’m for Rocky Anderson because he stood up when NOBODY else would, but unless some kind of media miracle happens, nobody will ever know who he is…

    Then again…

    Maybe the 99% movement is on to something new. Maybe we don’t need a leader. maybe we can all be leaders. It’s a new concept to consider.

    I ramble.

  2. #2 by Larry Bergan on May 26, 2012 - 4:36 am

    I’m for community gardens and solar power.

    Peter Corroon (D), done good yesterday!

  3. #3 by cav on May 26, 2012 - 8:19 am



    Give the Nobles

    Their nobility.

  4. #4 by Larry Bergan on May 26, 2012 - 8:27 am

    For a time.

  5. #5 by Glenden Brown on May 26, 2012 - 9:34 am

    Larry – I love the contrast between hysterics over 800,000 in Vegas in contrast to the absolute silence over trillions dumped down the cesspool of Iraq and Afghanistan. It’s like that old saying – one death is a tragedy a million is a statistic.

  6. #6 by Larry Bergan on May 26, 2012 - 9:40 am



  7. #7 by Larry Bergan on May 26, 2012 - 9:49 am

    There isn’t one dime involved in justice or democracy, but it has to happen.

    • #8 by Glenden Brown on May 26, 2012 - 10:17 am

      I don’t know if you’ve seen them, but at Washington Monthly, the fill in blogger has been writing about the distinction between extractive and inclusive governments. One key distinction is that an inclusive government reins in the elite class – it keeps them from corrupting the economy in the name of their own enrichment. In a very real way, we’re walking a knife’s edge as a nation the forces restraining the elite classes have grown progressively weaker and weaker. Even the modest attempts to rein in the destructive, venal and greedy elite classes have been met with furious resistance on the false grounds that the economy needs them, they are too big to fail. So the forces of justice and democracy are fighting the forces of an elite class too stupid to realize its sowing the seeds of its own destruction and willing to invest all its resources in preserving its current delusions.

  8. #9 by Larry Bergan on May 26, 2012 - 10:57 am

    Eisenhower said it best. I can’t even begin to measure up, but I try.

  9. #10 by brewski on May 26, 2012 - 12:17 pm

    And this is some surprise, that the same government which directly subsidizes processed junk food over all other foods, in order to keep the agribusinesses status quo, also makes other bad decisions?

    The wars are but one example. Our agriculture policy, health policy, banking policy, housing policy, and pretty much every other policy is arranged to enrich the insiders and elite. This is not a GOP vs Dem thing since much of this was well entrenched during the Dem monopoly from 1954 – 1994. No, it isn’t a partisan phenomenon. It is an insider elite vs everyone else phenomenon. Giving more power, authority and money to the insider elites hardly seems like the solution.

  10. #11 by Larry Bergan on May 26, 2012 - 12:36 pm


    Give your plan or STFU.

  11. #12 by Larry Bergan on May 26, 2012 - 12:39 pm

    It had better not be about taxes or charts!

  12. #13 by Larry Bergan on May 26, 2012 - 12:45 pm

    Sorry, but I’m pretty angry at this point,even though I just watched “Happy Gilmore” and laughed my legs, ass and torso off!

  13. #14 by Whiny Beeeatch Larry Bergan on May 26, 2012 - 1:53 pm

    We win!!

  14. #15 by brewski on May 26, 2012 - 10:24 pm

    Plan for what?

  15. #16 by cav on May 27, 2012 - 7:50 am

    For toppling Castro – of course.

  16. #17 by brewski on May 27, 2012 - 9:47 am

    So Larry, let’s assume that both unnecessary wars and wasteful government behavior and self enrichment are both wrong. Let’s agree that unneeded wars are far worse than government employees partying it up on the tax payer’s dime and mocking us at the same time. Let’s agree on all this. So how is the answer to this giving this same government more power and more money? How is that the solution?

  17. #18 by cav on May 27, 2012 - 2:55 pm

    Let’s assume that state contrived violence anywhere on the planet is supported by those on who the ‘government’ is supposed to be of, by and for. is legitimate, legal, moral and helpful, which it is not. Protesting that violence by the very people in whose name and on whose dime the violence is perpetrated is to be met itself with more state (or corporate, outsourced and privatized, if you will) violence directed this time at those exercising their 1st Amendment rights, but who are not experiencing personhood of the corporations breed – who are rarely cited with crime and never pepper-sprayed or jailed, let alone disappeared or killed.

    That we’re even talking about sex scandals or the price of haircuts, just show how wonderfully evolved our shining city on the hill has become.

    As for solutions…prosecuting war crimes, fraudulent and criminal business practice would be a small start. I mean we actually pay taxes in support of a ‘Justice Department. Instead, give recognition and props to whistle-blowers whose courage and morality is commendable. Top that off with some regulation and we might just find ourselves on a course toward the society we could be a little more proud and supportive of.

  18. #19 by brewski on May 27, 2012 - 3:32 pm

    You mention prosecuting crimes committed by the military and business. BUt you don’t even mention crimes and fraud committed by the same government you want to be the prosecutor. Let’s start by prosecuting the corruption of Clinton, Rubin, Obama, Pelosi, Dodd, etc. They are all guilty of corruption and fraud.

  19. #20 by Larry Bergan on May 27, 2012 - 4:26 pm

    But brewski, those are all democrats. You can’t think of any republicans who deserve to be prosecuted for illegal torture ect…

    Sorry for being rude earlier, but glenn has been using my name again to some extent and trolls get to me when I’ve had a little too much to drink.

  20. #21 by Larry Bergan on May 27, 2012 - 4:30 pm

    By the way, Clinton wasn’t prosecuted exactly, but he sure was persecuted in public during his entire term; not for any of the serious things they said he did, but for sex. Bush’s dad cheated on his wife and it didn’t make it to the press. Why is that?

  21. #22 by brewski on May 27, 2012 - 4:31 pm

    It might just be easier to take every elected official of both parties and stand them all up against the wall, then start over.

  22. #23 by Larry Bergan on May 27, 2012 - 4:41 pm

    I can think of a couple of democrats that deserve to stay on, like Dennis Kucinich, Russ Feingold and others, but overall, I’m with you on getting these guys out. They’re responsible for a massive failure in Washington and should be prevented from participating in the scene.

    If you can point to any Republican that you think deserves to stay, I’d be interested.

  23. #24 by Larry Bergan on May 27, 2012 - 5:23 pm

    Seems as though the Brits are a lot more interested in finding out why the decision to invade Iraq took place and have made some progress recently.

    From theguardian:

    21 May 2012: Foreign Office loses appeal against release of extracts from phone call that took place a few days before invasion

    We should be able to find out what Bush said to Blair if the media in this country will report on it. I’m not holding my breath on that one, but thanks to the internet we will soon know.

  24. #25 by Larry Bergan on May 27, 2012 - 10:02 pm

    Come on brewski.

    Name ONE Republican you support besides Bush.

  25. #26 by Richard Warnick on May 28, 2012 - 10:29 am

    brewski doesn’t like any Republicans or Democrats, however he does not want any Republicans prosecuted.

  26. #27 by Larry Bergan on May 28, 2012 - 10:55 am

    Let’s give brewski a chance.

    Could be a power outage, computer crash, a family tragedy or a sex scandal.

  27. #28 by Ronald D. Hunt on May 28, 2012 - 11:59 am

    Maybe the cognitive dissonance finely got to him!!!!

  28. #29 by Larry Bergan on May 28, 2012 - 12:05 pm

    We can hope.

  29. #30 by brewski on May 28, 2012 - 5:24 pm

    Who ever said I support Bush?

    I like Jon Huntsman. Anyone who could get rid of Utah’s “private clubs” has my support.

  30. #31 by brewski on May 28, 2012 - 5:25 pm

    I’d like Greenspan prosecuted for criminal stupidity the way he caused two separate asset bubbles.

  31. #32 by Larry Bergan on May 28, 2012 - 6:18 pm


    You don’t support Bush?

    How about condemning his war crimes.

  32. #33 by brewski on May 28, 2012 - 7:45 pm

    Waterboarding three people is pretty mild compared to carpet bombing Hanoi or assassinations in sovereign countries. You want to prosecute every president for their war crimes, and be proportionate about it? Go ahead. There is a reason they haven’t gone after Bush, and that is because they don’t want to set a precedent.

  33. #34 by Larry Bergan on May 28, 2012 - 10:32 pm

    I think you’re probably right about the precedent thing, but I don’t think Johnson or Obama personally profited from their actions. Cheney and Bush are a different matter.

    Operation Iraqi Oil.

  34. #35 by Larry Bergan on May 28, 2012 - 10:45 pm

    The Carlyle Group and Halliburton come to mind.

  35. #36 by Larry Bergan on May 29, 2012 - 1:19 am

    Merchants of death wouldn’t be too harsh.

    Let’s roll!

  36. #37 by brewski on May 29, 2012 - 6:59 am

    I didn’t think that when prosecuting war crimes that it mattered who profited from it. Ask Milosevic.

  37. #38 by Larry Bergan on May 29, 2012 - 10:45 am


    We’re talking Bush/Cheney here. Please try to stay on topic. I know it’s hard for you.

  38. #39 by Richard Warnick on May 29, 2012 - 12:13 pm

    New York Times: Secret ‘Kill List’ Proves a Test of Obama’s Principles and Will

    It is the strangest of bureaucratic rituals: Every week or so, more than 100 members of the government’s sprawling national security apparatus gather, by secure video teleconference, to pore over terrorist suspects’ biographies and recommend to the president who should be the next to die.

    …A parallel, more cloistered selection process at the C.I.A. focuses largely on Pakistan, where that agency conducts strikes.

    The nominations go to the White House, where by his own insistence and guided by Mr. Brennan, Mr. Obama must approve any name. He signs off on every strike in Yemen and Somalia and also on the more complex and risky strikes in Pakistan — about a third of the total.

    …Justly or not, drones have become a provocative symbol of American power, running roughshod over national sovereignty and killing innocents. With China and Russia watching, the United States has set an international precedent for sending drones over borders to kill enemies.

    Mr. Blair, the former director of national intelligence, said the strike campaign was dangerously seductive. “It is the politically advantageous thing to do — low cost, no U.S. casualties, gives the appearance of toughness,” he said. “It plays well domestically, and it is unpopular only in other countries. Any damage it does to the national interest only shows up over the long term.”

    Food for thought.

  39. #40 by Larry Bergan on May 29, 2012 - 1:16 pm

    I don’t know what Obama’s up to, but I’m sure he doesn’t have any drone stock.

    That’s more then you can say about president previous.

  40. #41 by Richard Warnick on May 29, 2012 - 2:06 pm

    I’m afraid it’s becoming evident that President Obama has no concept of the national interest or the rule of law. He’s a pure politician 24/7/365 (366 in a presidential election year).

  41. #42 by brewski on May 29, 2012 - 2:23 pm

    You’re just figuring that out now?

    I figured that out June 4, 2008.

  42. #43 by cav on May 29, 2012 - 2:28 pm

    And Beohner, McCain, and those on the right (wrong) are not?

    But I’m being divisive, am I not?

  43. #44 by Richard Warnick on May 29, 2012 - 2:39 pm

    I never trusted Obama after he voted for the FISA Amendments. But I still wanted to give him a chance to prove he could govern differently than Bush, who was stuck in a permanent campaign mode.

  44. #45 by cav on May 29, 2012 - 2:56 pm

    Momentum is a cruel tyrant – It also helps a great deal if strength and courage are high on you values list. And if your enemies haven’t proven to be murderous, malevolent shittards.

  45. #46 by brewski on May 29, 2012 - 3:36 pm

    And appointing an admitted tax cheat to head the IRS wasn’t a tip off?

  46. #47 by Larry Bergan on May 29, 2012 - 3:42 pm

    I just turned sixty.

    Unless Romney comes out in favor of doubling social security checks, I’m voting Obama!

    On Diebold. 🙁

  47. #48 by Richard Warnick on May 29, 2012 - 3:49 pm


    Every President deserves a chance to prove himself in office. I wasn’t happy with Bush, but until he failed to defend this country against terrorists and bungled the response, I was willing to give the guy some leeway.

  48. #49 by Larry Bergan on May 29, 2012 - 3:59 pm

    Plus; he didn’t win.

  49. #50 by Larry Bergan on May 29, 2012 - 4:25 pm

    Plus; 911 was a success, but, let’s not go there.

  50. #51 by brewski on May 29, 2012 - 4:27 pm

    How much leeway? Until he passed the worst bill in the history of the United States?

  51. #52 by Richard Warnick on May 29, 2012 - 5:14 pm

    ACA was a bad bill. In fact, in 2008 Obama campaigned AGAINST the individual private insurance mandate and FOR the public option, so he broke two promises in one piece of legislation.

    So at that point President Obama revealed his true priorities. Worst bill in history? That would be TARP.

  52. #54 by brewski on May 29, 2012 - 11:23 pm

    “ObamaCare will end up favoring the industry. Rather than structuring real price controls and real competition into the most sweeping healthcare legislature since Medicare, Washington seems more determined to furnish health insurers with even more taxpayer subsidies along side of millions of uninsured Americans who will be required to purchase insurance. Meanwhile, drug and device makers will simply raise prices to pay for any new taxes. There will never be real change from an industry backed by one of the strongest, largest, and wealthiest lobbyist groups in Washington handing out billions of dollars.”
    from the link in #51

    What is funny is when I first referenced this same article way way back, it was roundly criticized by the illiterate lefties on this site, particularly that ambulance chaser who went to UVM. He was quick to make ad hominem attacks about the author, and made not one substantive criticism. But as we can see now, the author was 100% spot on.

  53. #55 by Ronald D. Hunt on May 29, 2012 - 11:36 pm


    Nah, Gramm beach billy act, or perhaps the Fugitive slave act, are worse then TARP. Their is plenty of bad legislation for TARP to compete with.

  54. #56 by brewski on May 29, 2012 - 11:50 pm

    The 16th amendment.

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