Saturday, July 24, 2004

Wilson defense tour'04: What is left of the supporters for Joe "Mitty" Wilson have come up with a new defense of saying Joe Wilson was right after all! Kevin Drum writes that Joe Wilson's  "...central claim was that there was virtually no evidence to back up the idea that Saddam had sought uranium from Niger". Now there is a ton of misspeak, misspoke that Wilson claims the press, senate investigation group and everyone else got wrong, you can check out those here from the Weekly Standard.  But lets get back to the "central claim".  President Bush in his SOTU said "The British government has learned that Saddam Hussein recently sought significant quantities of uranium from Africa". That's it, not Hussein brought, or stole it or got it in anyway shape or form, he looked into getting uranium.  The Butler report concluded

Pre-war assessments that Iraq sought uranium from Niger were "well-founded on intelligence", the Butler report has concluded...  But Lord Butler said the government had intelligence from "several different sources". "The forged documents were not available to the British government at the time its assessment was made and so the fact of the forgery does not undermine it," the report said.
The Senate Report also said:
"The CIA gave Wilson's report a "good" grade because "the Nigerien officials admitted that the Iraqi delegation had traveled there in 1999 and that the Nigerien Prime Minister believed the Iraqis were interested in purchasing uranium"
Niger exports are four things: Uranium, goats, cowpeas and onions, figure out what Iraqi officials wanted from them. Now who am I going to believe? Joe Wilson who thru his own words in his book and various interviews embellished(I'm being kind here) several points as Drum noted, or British intelligence?  The White House was wrong to back down in their claim because the CIA didn't agree, considering now how badly  CIA intelligence gathering seems to be, why would anyone be surprised they said something was wrong when it was right.   Germany: DaimlerChrysler and Thomas Cook employees agreed to work  40- hour week to save jobs and cut costs, Volkswagen is going to start talks to do the same. In the face of global competition, the worker's paradise  is getting dragged into reality.   France: To show how diverse the country is, they are opening up a museum of Immigration
"A Museum of Immigration is a fairly typical French response, one financed by the government and intended by politicians and bureaucrats to address a social problem through culture. Yet while willing to open a museum, France's cultural elite continue to resist embracing the creative energy represented by French artists, writers and performers of African, Arab and Asian descent"
It comes down to  the thinking that French values  must be followed and embraced by everyone who lives in the country. I can understand that thinking, except it doesn't work well in face of continous immigration. This is a battle France is eventually going to lose. Jeopardy: Washington Post profile on Ken Jennings, who is now a 38 day champ going into summer hiatus, new episodes won't be on till September. But he does have a sense of humor.

"Already, viewers have watched host Alex Trebek go from delight to dismay to desperation at the sight of the same champion returning again and again.  

"Tell us some deep, dark secret about yourself," Trebek implored somewhere in the seventh week, after exhausting his supply of cue cards listing Jennings's hobbies and amusing anecdotes.

"You know," Jennings deadpanned, "I killed a man down South once."  

 Trebek hastily returned to the board,.."

Movies: Good news, Transformers is going to be made into a live action movie made by Dreamworks and Paramount Pictures with Steven Spielberg to be executive producer. The bad news is according to Don Murphy who is one of the producers, there are going to be "changes", one of those being Megatron is not going to transform into a gun because "its lame". The geek boy in me just died a little reading that.  But,  if I find out the movie is going to be based on the new Transformer series or to be hip with the kiddies, Optimus Prime transform into a Hummer rollin on dubs with a  system in the back, then I am going to have huge problems with it. The description of the two types of Transformers reported by the Hollywood reporter  is downright scary.
"The Transformers are divided into two groups of robots, one led by Optimus Prime, who believes in tolerance and the sanctity of life, the other by Megatron, who espouses survival of the fittest and the extermination of biological life."
Sheesh, I don't remember them being that scary or mushy.

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