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George W. Bush: He Can’t Win for Losing!
By Al Owens
One day, not long after I arrived in Vietnam back in 1969, I was told
that since I’d had a piece of military equipment stolen from me before I
got there – I’d have to pay for it while there. In other words, I was
probably the only U.S. troop to take a pay cut WHILE in Vietnam! That
day was just “one of those days.”
Recently, George W. Bush has had “one of those days,” everyday!
He’s facing near daily defections from Republican Senators who’re
holding foot races to the nearest microphones to urge him to change
direction in Iraq.
Republican Senators Snowe, Hagel, Lugar, Voinovich, Domenici, Coleman
and Warner have all expressed their concerns about the president’s
chaotic war plan.
That list is sure to grow. There are a few Republican Senators up for
reelection in November. You can expect some of them to call for some
kind of troop withdrawal, lest they get voted into early retirements!
The president probably opens his morning newspapers with certain
trepidation. He knows every headline could just produce “one of those
Like on Thursday morning, when he learned from The Washington Post’s Bob
Woodward that his CIA Director Michael V. Hayden had told the Iraq Study
Group back in November that the Iraqi government’s inability to govern
With CIA Directors like Hayden, who needs enemies?
That news came only a few hours after a high level intelligence report
was leaked that indicates that al-Qaida is as strong as it was on
September 11th, 2001.
That’s the same al-Qaida the president used to promise he’d hunt down
wherever they hid. Maybe al-Qaida needs to hide on the White House lawn
for the president to find it.
I once got fired from a high paying job – the day before Christmas! So I
know exactly how it feels to have “one of those days.”
That’s like the day this week that the president learned his onetime
Surgeon General, Dr. Richard Carmona, told a congressional committee
that he’d been forced to make political considerations in announcing
public health policies. Ouch!
Carmona told that panel that the Bush administration would push science
aside, to advance its political agenda in matters involving serious
public health issues.
There was a report earlier in the week by the Congressional Research
Service that indicates that 12 billion dollars a month is being spent in
Iraq and in Afghanistan. It went on to say that the United States has
already spent a half trillion dollars in those two countries.
That can’t be good news to a president whose every public appearance
seems to begin with and end with his justification for “staying the
I once ran my bicycle into a telephone pole when I was about 6
years-old. I cried so long, I missed dinner. That was just “one of those
The kind of day George W. Bush must have had when his Homeland Security
Secretary, Michael Chertoff, told a newspaper that he had a “gut
feeling” that this summer there could be an increased risk of terrorist
The budget for Homeland Security is 46.4 billion dollars. But apparently
it doesn’t need that kind of money. We can always depend on Michael
Chertoff’s gut feelings instead.
All over the U.S. Congress there are Democratic bills that are showing
increasing Republican support that could limit the president’s war
One of them may eventually reach the president’s desk with enough
bi-partisan support that it could override his veto pen.
That will most likely become another “one of those days.”
In the meantime, Bush opens his morning newspaper to find that one of
his staunchest Iraq War supporters, Senator John McCain, is falling fast
in his campaign for president.
Earlier this week to of McCain’s top campaign staffers jumped ship. They
could apparently sense a political meltdown - as McCain’s diehard
support for the war is meeting with a voting public that’s becoming
increasingly antipathetic toward it.
That’s not good news for George W. Bush.
Sort of like on Tuesday, when the Senate’s Financial Services
Appropriations Subcommittee decided to cut funding for Vice President
Dick Cheney’s office.
Of course Cheney will probably get the 4.4 million dollars worth of
pencils and pens he needs. But that move is an effort to force him to
admit he’s a member of the executive branch instead of the branch
populated only by Dick Cheney.
All of this stuff must give the president heartburn. (Especially since
it’s happening daily)
I vividly remember the day, as an eager young reporter, I was sent out
to cover the armed robbery of a supermarket.
I’d arrived on the scene, got the appropriate facts from the police, and
wrote them down on my reporter’s notebook with a felt tipped pen.
Problem was it was in the middle of a heavy downpour. Problem was when I
went live on the air, the rain had completely wiped out all of my notes.
Problem was I went live on the air – with nothing to say! It was just
‘one of those days.”
I’m sure the president could relate to that. On Thursday morning, he
held a news conference. He was bombarded with questions about that newly
released interim report on the progress (and lack of it) in Iraq.
Except for a complete restatement of his threadbare vision for success
in Iraq, Bush had nothing new to say. It was, for him, another “one of
No wonder arch-conservatives (like Ann Coulter) are busily changing the
subject these days. Her rehashing a month old story about a disgraced
district attorney is a weak bit of political sleight of hand, don’t you