The Spectacle Blog
Reverse engineering intelligence gathered from the Democrat blog sites, informed by the report of a delightfully frantic phone call by Ted Kennedy to the so-called netroots with regard whom among his colleagues he doubts, the Alito filibuster fight centers around eleven Doubtful Democrats.
The Doubtful Democrats are Pryor and Lincoln of Arkansas, Cantwell and Murray of Washington, Baucus of Montana, Dorgan and Conrad of North Dakota, Bayh of Indiana, Lautenberg and Menendez of New Jersey, Lieberman of Connecticut.
Breaking this eleven down, there are six in red states and seven in blue states.
As of this moment, Nelson of Red Nebraska and Byrd of Red West Virginia and Johnson of Red South Dakota are pledged to vote with the GOP for cloture. (Add to this the most likely and all but announced, determined, certain cloture votes of Democrats Dorgan and Conrad of Red North Dakota. )
The summary is that at this moment there are now five reliable Red State Democrats to join fifty-five Republicans for cloture.
Speaking routinely now with Steve Hayes of the Weekly Standard and John Loftus of IntelligenceSummit.org and also my best source with regard the Byzantine tale of the Iraqi WMD program that cannot be proved or unproved by the public record of facts established since the capture of Baghdad in April 2003.
I mention again the promising mysterious treasure said to be coming to all of us within the next month. John Loftus is in possession of a CD that came to him by a reportedly trustworthy route that represents a collection of recorded sessions from 1988 to early this century (perhaps as late as 2002) in which Saddam Hussein plots with thirty other voices to supervise and conceal WMD.
The voice of Saddam Hussein is now verified by trustworthy agent; the voice of Tariq Aziz is verified by trustworthy agent. Blix and ElBaredi are said to be mentioned most disparingly and or damangingly. The core topic is how to manipulate inquiries and searches for WMD, after the Gulf War I, 1990-91, during the UN inspection regime from 1991-98, after the inspectors returned to Baghdad in 2002.
Someone must have cut off their absinthe and Prozac. The lib blogs are going nuts over the Kerry mini-buster against the Alito nomination. The Boys from Lord of the Flies -- the DailyKos temper tanrtum teens, FireDogLake and Democratunderground, among others -- are all linking arms and running toward the same cliff. Apparently, Teddy was on the phone with them asking for "netroots" help with the Dems who -- so far -- haven't joined up with them. The Filibuster crew now numbers about 15. Which is a long way from 41.
The most interesting part of this is that Hillary has endorsed the filibuster. Poor Chuckie Schumer. For once, someone beat him to a microphone. He must be distraught.
Keep an eye on this one. What will the NYT say tomorrow? Until we know that, we can't know how the rest of the Dems will go. NYT, after all, is their think tank cum operational commander. (I wonder what Jill Abrahamson has in store for tomorrow?)
Senate source concludes that the Kerry appearance today was a fundraising maneuver to gain bona fides with the lefty donors.
Kerry arrived, spoke for thirty minutes, then tried to slip away from reporters. Made nonchalant gestures, said he was just part of an effort to prevent extremism, and so forth, and then dove into car to return to the good life.
The Democrats demonstrate the discipline of an NCAA Division 1 0-16 college basketball team. They're going to win one, just maybe not this season.
Speculation about the missing Persian bloodhound Ahmadinejad: Why does he disappear for a week of work days after returning from war council with al-Assads and (reportedly) Mugniyeh at Damascus?
A national air defense exercise is one rational if apparently disproportionate explanation.
But are the Tehran tyrants truly expecting a bombing run at them now, or near to now, when the IAEA meeting and the Russian nuclear fuel cycle negotiation fail? Is the Tehran tyranny so discontinuous from the Great Satan and his kind that the leadership misreads us this wildly?
More bluntly, the record suggests that Persian paranoia is justified. The record suggests that it would be irrational and irresponsible for Ahmadinejad not to plan for a strike along with a coup, assassinations, general all weather subversion by the Great Satan.
For example, the record shows that on August 2, 1953, the Tehran population voted freely and openly 99.9% in favor of giving the then-superstar Premier Mohammed Mossadegh the power to dissolve the troublesome, British and US and Russian purchased Majlis and to run Iran as a nation yearning to be free.
Tonight, our very own Jed Babbin will be a guest on CNBC's Kudlow and Company. Tune in between 5 p.m. and 6 p.m.
Over at TAPPED, Sam Rosenfeld writes:
There simply isn't an actual dispute between the administration and its critics about the legality of the spying program. The president himself says, in so many words, that FISA was inadequate to the task at hand, so they broke that law. To be sure, he then hammers the podium and yells out a meaningless "This program is legal!" But the substance of what he's saying doesn't even dispute that the program is, in fact, technically illegal.Um, no. What the administration is arguing is that FISA doesn't apply. To know whether this is true or not, you'd have to know the technical details of the operation. We don't, and shouldn't. But the sources inside the government who opposed the program and leaked to James Risen weren't concerned about FISA, they were concerned about the Fourth Amendment (and the caselaw generally runs against them on this).
Dave, the New York Times's coverage is even better than you suggest. How's this for an argent quote about Jean-François? "Democrats cringed and Republicans jeered at the awkwardness of his gesture..."