It’s Not news when:

Rebublicans bash gays in their efforts to win elections.

The Republican Party of Kentucky has created a robo-call advertising campaign featuring singer Pat Boone warning that the election of Democratic gubernatorial nominee Steven Beshear will put a governor in office who supports “every homosexual cause.”

The Wall Street Journal runs an editorial bashing Al Gore.

The Pentagon drew up plans to nuke Iran, Syria, Libya and Iraq in 2003 at a moment’s notice.

[A] secret planning document issued by the U.S. military’s nuclear-weapons command in 2003 ordered preparations for nuclear strikes on countries seeking to acquire weapons of mass destruction, including Iran, Saddam Hussein-era Iraq, Libya and Syria.

Ron Paul, the only anti-war Republican candidate just had the highest one day online fund raising event, ever.

. . . Rep. Ron Paul’s presidential campaign has added up its numbers and told the Associated Press that it raised $4.2 million in about 24 hours from more than 37,000 contributors.

A Republican nominee for Attorney General tells Senators he will not enforce contempt of Congress citations against Bush officials who refused to respond to Congressional subpoenas, and he is still expected to win approval for his appointment in the Senate thanks to the votes of — Democrats.

President Bush praises a military dictator after he declares martial law and arrests hundreds of protesting lawyers, even though he’s formerly struck peace deals with Islamic Islamic extremists sheltering Osama Bin Laden.

Musharraf “has been a strong fighter against extremists and radicals,” Bush said.

(More “It’s Not News” below the fold)

Update [2007-11-6 8:40:1 by Steven D]: A truly frightening and disgusting update is below the fold.

Judicial Watch, a conservative “watchdog” group, sues a Clinton.

A prominent Republican expresses disapproval of the actions of President Bush and Vice President Cheney regarding the Iraq war, Bush’s “signing statements” and the use of illegal warantless wiretaps, but doesn’t let anyone know about his opinions until he’s dead:

. . . Ford expressed alarm at how [Bush] turned budget surpluses into record deficits, and he criticized the rationale given for the Iraq war, saying the White House should have focused on S addam Hussein’s brutal behavior, not on weapons of mass destruction that would never be found. He also seemed troubled by signing statements attached to bills in which Bush suggested he might not enforce laws he thought intruded on his executive authority. And Ford questioned the need for warrantless surveillance.

“I would never do it,” he said after revelations of the National Security Agency program. “It surprises me they worry that they think they have to do it. I was dumbfounded when I heard they were. I didn’t think it was necessary. Where does he get his advice?”

From Cheney and his circle, DeFrank answered.

“Explain to me who this fella Libby is,” Ford said, referring to the vice president’s then-chief of staff, I. Lewis “Scooter” Libby. “I never heard of him, and I thought I knew Dick Cheney.”

A US General speaks approvingly of torture.

“As long as we’re responsible for hunting those SOBs down, finding them and preventing them from killing our sons and daughters,” Honore said, “I think we’ve got an obligation to do what the hell we’ve got to do to make sure we get the mission done.”

Congrssional Democrats are poised to give Bush everything he wants to fund the Iraq war with no strings attached.

[W]hile House Appropriations Chairman David Obey (D-Wis.) and Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) have said they have no intention of bringing up Bush’s almost $200 billion supplemental war funding proposal this year without a timeline for withdrawal, Democrats are quietly preparing to give the president enough spending flexibility to keep the war going anyway.

Television ratings for cable news shows improve when they allow criticism of President Bush and his policies.

In the midst of a severe drought across much of the country, Bush vetos a water resources bill that had the support of Republicans in Congress.

Iraqis and US soldiers are still being killed in Iraq.

Afghanis are still being killed, too.

More than 100 people have been killed or wounded in a bomb explosion in northern Afghanistan, officials say.

One member of the Afghan parliament is among the dead, officials say. At least one other MP was wounded in the blast, in the town of Baghlan.

Update: And finally, “compassionate conservatives” are anything but.

I have lived for the last ten weeks with Andy Stephenson’s cancer. And in the most useless way. I couldn’t take it away, couldn’t relieve him of it, couldn’t mind it for a few hours so he could be freed to do the work he so loved. […]

When Andy suspected his ill health was serious, I offered to make calls for him. I have made calls for families unable to find resources for over a decade. The public health care system nearly killed my husband, and when we were given a reprieve, I swore I would work to help anyone to find the care they needed.

I had little real success in finding resources for Andy, except in the sense that we widened the circle of friends who helped us look. One of them struck gold, and was able to get Andy taken on as a patient by a respected doctor at Johns Hopkins. This seems no less than a miracle to us. There are many cancer patients in the world and no matter their net worth, they are not taken on easily by doctors at Johns Hopkins.

That left only the money. Out of state patients must be prepared to pay the full costs of their surgeries in advance. So, a group of Andy’s friends set out to try to raise the funds needed, armed with only love and hope and a very short window to come up with the cash before we were all turned away.

That we did indeed raise $50, 000 in 11 days, in small donations and in many currencies is a measure of how beloved Andy was. None of us had the skill to open wallets, per se. This was for Andy. […]

But the other fork of this story is the profound disturbance it created in the Bush right wing. I didn’t understand this until much later. But, the watchers saw our effort, watched the community response and were inspired with what can only be called hatred. Because only such a reaction could account for the vicious attack that was set into motion. […]

What followed was a coordinated effort to block Andy’s medical care or his benefit from the medical care we could secure for him. In specific, the Bush right had its agents make small donations so they could then call Paypal with allegations of fraud that froze Andy’s account. They also called Paypal, misrepresenting themselves as the hospital to “verify” that this effort was a scam.

And it got more vicious from there. Due to the frozen funds and the confusion it caused us all, Andy’s surgery date was cancelled by Johns Hopkins. It was with great difficulty that we were able to persuade the doctor to be put Andy back into the surgical rotation. That cost him two weeks while he suffered from the most aggressive, invasive form of cancer.

The smears and the rumors were seeded all over the internet, to many sites. Ill, on hold waiting for his surgery, Andy and the rest of us cast about trying to answer questions that were more often simply calculated accusations meant to discredit us all, meant to make Andy’s health care as difficult as possible. […]

After Andy was admitted to the hospital, the rumors turned into threats. A bounty was offered by the Bush right for anyone who could sneak into his hospital room. It was said he was getting a face lift. A telegram was sent just to see if it could be successfully delivered. The harassment was nonstop. And we tried to shield Andy from it, with less success than we would have liked. […]

Andy left the hospital and spent two weeks recovering at a friend’s house, learning how to eat again, learning how to move, weaning himself from the morphine that he’d needed post surgery. During this time, one of his supporters in Baltimore had her car vandalized – a message was sent. Shortly after he left to return to Seattle, his second East Coast hostess was stalked to her home and watched as someone tried to open her front door. His supporters everywhere were systematically intimidated and all the while, they tried to keep it from Andy.

Andy then went back home to Seattle, looking forward to a medical course of chemotherapy and radiation. Once he arrived, he found that an anonymous tipster had managed to get his Medicaid shut down. It took us two weeks to get him back in the system. Andy had anaplastic pancreatic cancer and was again forced to wait weeks for follow up care.

By this time, Andy’s stalkers had set up a website. It purported to be concerned that the funds for his surgery were raised fraudulently. Thankfully by this time, Andy spent very time on line. But it wore on his core advocates who were repeatedly attacked, defamed and baited.

We were threatened with everything from the FBI to the Washington State Attorney General. […]

As late as week before Andy died, we couldn’t keep the poisonous campaign from him. He felt well enough to log into to his email and found a multipage denunciation, supposedly being filed with his state’s attorney general. He called me, not so much in a panic. Panic was no longer a speed Andy had. He called me in despair, because he could no longer fight the barrage of hatred being leveled at him. I don’t remember what I said to him but I hope it helped for a moment.

The attack from the Bush right never paused, not even through the agony of Andy’s last days. Not at all. Even the fact of his death is being disputed. Two days after his passing, his advocates are still being harassed, still receiving anonymous hate calls, “It was a scam.” The friend planning his service was visited by two men impersonating sheriffs on the morning after Andy passed. They were there to ask about fraud, they said.

Andy’s physical death has not stopped the attack, has not slowed the hatred, has not stemmed the steady stream of intimidation.

Other links to the Andy Stephenson cancer story:



Why is the Andy Stephenson story is relevant again? Because the idiot who organized the Freeper attack on his medical care is promoting himself for a Weblog award: LINK

[A Personal Note: My wife had surgery for pancreatic cancer last year. It is one of the deadliest, most invasive cancers that anyone can contract, and few people survive after they are diagnosed. Those that do are the ones where surgery is still a viable alternative (i.e., before the cancer metastasizes throughout the body) and where chemotherapy and radiation follows surgery as quickly thereafter as possible. That anyone would deliberately seek to interfere with another person’s cancer treatment thereby threatening their chances of survival merely because of the political beliefs of their supporters is beyond disgusting. I hope that they can be prosecuted by the appropriate authorities for what I can only perceive as the reckless endangerment of a person’s life tantamount to murder.]

This has been another edition of “It’s Not News.” You may now go back to being upset that your favorite TV shows soon will be running out of new episodes, and Americans be forced to watch re-runs, stupid game shows and bad reality TV programming because of a writers’ strike.

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