Sunday, May 25, 2003

Misuse of federal resources, shredding documents ... hmm ...
On "Meet the Press" this morning, Tim Russert had a pretty interesting conversation with four U.S. Senators involved in the intelligence committees to discuss what the hell is going on in Iraq. However, towards the end of the discussion, Russert brought up a Washington Post editorial from Friday's newspaper addressing the very strange - and dangerous - use of the Homeland Security Dept. to track down democrats in Texas who refused to participate in voting on a redistricting bill ["Questions in Texas"].
Here is the full quote that Russert asked the senators to comment on:

"Alas, how this misuse of federal security resources occurred may be a question that state records can shed little light on. The day after the search was called off, the Department of Public Safety ordered the destruction of 'any notes, correspondence, photos, etc. that were obtained' in the investigation. The department, in a statement, said it did so because federal rules prohibit retaining 'intelligence information that is not related to criminal conduct or activity' -- and the search was not a criminal matter. But are Texas authorities usually this diligent about this particular civil liberties requirement? The public deserves convincing evidence that the document destruction was routine, not an effort to cover something up ... The public is entitled to know how a Cabinet department formed to protect America from terrorists ended up looking for Democrats who didn't want to show up for work."

Shockingly - although not really - the senators sloughed off any serious comment about the editorial or the use of a terrorism organization to track down the democrats. In fact, most of the senators started giggling about the whole incident like it was some sort of pattycake game or sleepover party. And everyone wonders why a lot of us fear our politicians and don't trust the democrats who should have used this question to attack DeLay and the other nuts in control of Congress.

Just when you thought it was safe ...
While Bush campaigns for reelection, using the dead of Sept. 11 and the invasion of Iraq, as campaign props ["Bush '04 fund-raising cites war on terrorism"], the Pentagon is making moves for regime change in Iran ["Pentagon sets sights on a new Tehran regime"]. But the beauty of life is when it is all explained simply and humorously by column goddess Maureen Dowd ["Yo, Ayatollahs!"].

... but Nigella makes life worth living
Joyce Millman from the Boston Phoenix nails it right on the head this week about why some of us absolutely love Brit cook doll Nigella Lawson: ["Beauty and the feast"]

"Curvy, orally fixated, and unabashedly foodosexual, the dark-haired Lawson glides around her home kitchen in soft focus (her shows are filmed, not taped, and there’s no studio audience). Her slightly almond-shaped eyes glitter as she dips her fingers into one concoction or another and sucks them clean, emitting little mews of pleasure."

Mmm ... meow.