September 30, 2006

MuNu Moving Day

Today is the day the the land of Mu Nu migrates to new servers. Actually Sunday is the day, but since the administrator resides on the other side of the world, it's already Sunday. Whatever.

Anyway, expect some down time in the next 24-36 hours. It may be only disabled comments but it could very well mean a complete outage.

Go enjoy your weekend. We'll be back soon.

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Diane Lane Photo Of The Week

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Show 'em if ya got 'em.

And this week's Diane Lane Netflix Pick of the Week:

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Miss All-American Beauty (1982)

Synopsis:
Teenager Sally Butterfield (Diane Lane) competes in a Texas beauty pageant in hopes of winning a valuable scholarship. With the assistance of her coach, Agatha (Cloris Leachman), Sally wins and heads to the national competition to defend her title. No one expects the small-town girl from Texas to win the Miss All-American Beauty pageant, but she does, and is quickly hurled into an unfamiliar world of flashbulbs and travel. Is it worth it?

Gary's take: If there's any movie that highlighted what an "all-American" girl-next-door Diane Lane is it's this one. Yes, it was a made for TV movie, but all in all it's pretty well done. An interesting look into world of beauty pageants. Sally's grueling schedule strains her relationship with her family and boyfriend. Will she find the meaning of real beauty?

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September 29, 2006

Sick Bastard

What a disgusting piece of dogshit.

Foley, do the world a favor and blow your brains out.

And don't think for one minute that if this guy was a Democrat that Liberals everywhere wouldn't be wringing their hands over what a poor, tortured soul he is.

Seriously, dude. Smith and Wesson. One shot to the temple. Goom-bye!

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Bob Woodward Still Hunting Nixon

Notwithstanding that the 37th President is dead, crack reporter Bob Woodward sees the fact that President Bush has met with former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger as some kind of proof that Richard Nixon's legacy lives on with the White House's current occupant.

The premise of his new book - which oddly enough is coming out just before an election, imagine that - is that Bush is hiding the bad news in Iraq from the American people. Nixon is Bush and Vietnam is Iraq. Get the connection here? Woodward still pines for his golden days when his investigations blew the lid off of Watergate, leading to Nixon's resignation. Maybe he's hoping for a sequel to "All The President's Men". And Robert Redford would be only too happy to play him again. Once again, he'd be the darling of the media elite. Oh, to force Bush to resign! Just think of that!

Please.

As further "evidence" of some kind of White House cover-up, Woodward points to the increase in the number of attacks in Iraq against coalition forces. Like this is news? As if the MSM isn't thumping the drum on this one already? Whatever.

A senior administration official saw little new in Woodward's charges "except that Bob believes he has a lot of making up to do since the Washington establishment criticized him for being too soft in his first two books (on the Bush administration)."

"We've seen this movie before, and we shouldn't be surprised of another critical book about the Bush administration 40 days before an election," said the official.

Bush's Republican Party faces a strong challenge from Democrats as it seeks to retain control of Congress in the November 7 elections. The unpopular war in Iraq is a major issue in the campaign.

The official added there was nothing revealing in Woodward's account of the daily attack numbers. "You print them all the time."

The American people are not exactly looking at Iraq with rose-colored glasses. Yet Woodward is spinning his book on "60 Minutes" this weekend as if he is releasing the 21st Century equivalent of the Pentagon Papers.

It's time for Bob Woodward and the rest of the aging Boomer Left to exorcise the ghost of Nixon and get over their paranoia. It's really sad.

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Woman Spoons Her Way To Health...With Sand

Here's a Friday WTF? for the hall of fame: Woman Eats Sand To Stay Healthy.

An Indian grandmother has revealed she eats a kilo of sand a day to stay fit and healthy.

Ram Rati, 80, considers sand an essential part of her daily diet and eats a kilo of it before breakfast, lunch and afternoon tea

Ram who lives in Chinhar in Lucknow told Asian News International: "When young, I tried it for fun once. Since then, I am used to it. My brothers and relatives pestered me to quit it but it was all in vain. I eat on an average around one or one-and-a-half kilos of sand per day."

Her granddaughter Shikha said: "The doctor said if she has no health problems, let her eat. We think it suits her health."

Talk about your dietary fiber. I'd say this woman could probably pass just about anything through her system at this point.

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"No More Yankie My Wankie..."

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...The Donger need food!

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SMACK!

The gloves are off:

"Five years after 9/11, the worst attack on the American homeland in history, the Democrats offer nothing but criticism and obstruction and endless second-guessing. The party of FDR, the party of Harry Truman has become the party of cut and run," Bush said.
How d'ya like them apples?

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September 28, 2006

America Is Not To Blame

Mark Goldblatt in National Review Online asks the question: "When are we going to stop blaming ourselves?"

Why is so hard for some people to grasp the idea that Islamic Fascism is an ideology (posing as a theology) hell bent on destroying the West in general and the United States in particular for no other reason than they hate everything that we are and what we represent? They don't need Iraq or any other motivation to want to convert us or kill us. They just do.

Goldblatt explains:

If America hadn’t invaded Iraq, the United Nations would presumably still be enforcing sanctions against Saddam’s regime — sanctions which were killing thousands of Iraqi children each month and which were specifically cited by Osama in 2002 as a justification for the 9/11 attacks. In other words, the situation in Iraq before the war was viewed by al Qaeda as a rationale for violence against America.

Then again, America’s support for Israel was also cited by Osama to justify his terrorist jihad. Should we therefore end that support? What about our tolerance of, in Osama’s words, “immoral acts of fornication, homosexuality, intoxicants, gambling’s [sic], and trading with interest”? If our “immorality” is being utilized by al Qaeda to recruit terrorists, should we therefore crack down on Snoop Dogg, Will and Grace, Budweiser, Las Vegas, and Citibank? And what of our stubborn refusal to convert to Islam — in Osama’s eyes, perhaps the greatest provocation of all? Should we therefore renounce our Judeo-Christian heritage, abandon the separation of church and state and adopt sharia law to escape the wrath of al Qaeda?

If America is ever to triumph in its war against Islamic terrorism, we must get past the idea that we are its root cause. Specifically, we must get past the idea that a suicide bomber is just a peace-loving Muslim who, if we hadn’t set him off, would be growing figs and building sandcastles. Strapping explosives to your torso, marching yourself into a crowded marketplace and blowing yourself up in order to slaughter as many civilians, including women and children, as you can is a profoundly demented act, an act which undoes a dozen or so millennia in the moral evolution of the human species.

Such an act is not triggered by America’s sociopolitical landscape or by its foreign policy. Rather, it is nurtured by an intellectually degenerate culture, sponsored by sleazy kleptocratic regimes and authorized by a once-honorable religious tradition perverted to serve the pipedreams of an apocalyptic death cult.

It’s Muslim civilization, not America, that must change in order for Islamic terrorism to cease.

It's not what we do it's who we are. If we fight back, it's a recruiting tool. If we passively look the other way after an attack, it's a recruiting tool. If we draw breath, it's a recruiting tool!

Seriously, if the position of a political party is that we as a nation can somehow mollify or reduce this enemy's hatred for us and thereby lower the threat that they pose then it represents a fundamental failure to understand this enemy.

That alone disqualifies Democrats from being in charge of the Global War On Terror.

It's bad enough that the Democrats' "Blame America" rhetoric gives aid and comfort to this enemy. Allowing them to call the shots in how we deal with them would have disastrous consequences for the safety of the American people.

UPDATE (9/29/06):
The Moose is thinking along similar lines today:

It comes down to a clash of perspectives between those who view the fight against Jihadists as a criminal action against a gang versus those who view it as a war against a terrorist movement that rejects the normal rules of combat. If you believe the former, the detainees should have access to all of the protections and rights of the American legal system. If your perspective is that this is a war, then the normal protections that are championed by the ACLU for American citizens do not apply.

America remains the great hope of liberalism in a world threatened by reactionaries who seek to repeal civilization and return us to the seventh century. For the sake of the soul of progressivism, it is time for liberals to speak these truths.

Anti-Bush animus is leading lefties to lose perspective and adopt the old "Blame America First" mentality. The enemy is not us.

Smart guy, that Moose.

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4,000 Terrorists Killed In Iraq Since The Fall Of Saddam

From the horse's mouth: Zarqawi's replacement as Al-Qaeda leader in Iraq, Abu Hamza al-Muhajir.

4,000? Not bad for a distraction from the War On Terror, eh?

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Lamont's Negative Momentum

It's been more than five weeks since the last Quinnipiac Poll on the CT Senate race, and with six weeks still remaining before the November 7th election Joe Lieberman still shows a ten-point lead among likely Connecticut voters.

The results of the poll have Lieberman at 49% to Lamont's 39%. Republican candidate Alan "Gold" Schlesinger is still stuck at 5%. If you distribute the "undecideds" proportionately, the numbers indicate that Lieberman would win with 52% if the election were held today. If you gave all the "undecideds" to Ned Lamont, Lieberman still wins 49% to 46%. I seriously doubt any Schlesinger voters would switch to Lamont.

The A/P story tries its best to spin the poll results by pointing out that the race has "tightened" since the Aug. 17th poll, which was Lieberman leading 53% to Lamont's 41%. Yeah. It "tightened" so much Lieberman's lead went from 12 points to 10! Wow, is that a dynamic swing or what?

The real story when you compare those numbers is that Lamont's total support dropped from 41% to 39%. Lamont's momentum coming out of the Aug. 8th primary seems to have evaporated.

Now let's look at the internal data. While it's true that the bulk of Lieberman's support comes from Republicans and Independents, it's clear that Democrats are not united behind Ned Lamont. Democrat respondents favored the Greenwich millionaire 57% to 37%. More than one third of likely Democrat voters still prefer Joe Lieberman.

Remember last week when the Lamont campaign released an ad calling Lieberman a "turncoat"? I said at the time that I guessed that the reason they were focusing so much on Lieberman's Independent candidacy was because their internals were probably showing that Lamont, the Democrat's annointed candidate, was not closing the deal with enough of the party faithful.

Looks like that is indeed the case. Five weeks ago in the August 17th Quinnipiac poll, Democrats favored Lamont over Lieberman 60% to 33%. That's a seven point swing back in Lieberman's favor - among Democrats!

Another significant factor in the data proves another point:

"Lamont wins among those who say Iraq is the most important issue to their vote, but that is only 35 percent of the electorate. Lieberman wins on all the other issues voters say matter most to them, including terrorism and the economy."
That's right. Lamont's base of support - the Left-wing anti-war kooks - represents a significant minority even in a state as "Blue" as Connecticut.

When asked if Ned Lamont "has the right kind of experience to be a United States Senator or not", 47% of respondents said "No".

When asked if each candidate was spending more time "explaining what he would do if elected Senator or attacking" their opponent, guess what?

Lieberman: Explaining what he would do - 53% or attacking Ned Lamont - 33%
Lamont: Explaining what he would do - 25% or attacking Joe Lieberman - 62%

Joe Lieberman need not feel completely secure just yet. Six weeks is a long time in politics. But it's clear that as long as he continues to connect with CT voters - regardless of party - as a positive force for his state in the U.S. Senate, then the great CT moonbat "insurgency" of 2006 will be swatted away by a popular majority. And the Dems will have thrown away a perfectly safe Senate seat.

UPDATE:
Jim Geraghty sees the final spread on Nov. 7th in single digits and I'm inclined to agree with him, though he presents a comprehensive analysis of the data which shows Lamont doesn't have a snowball's chance of beating Liebs.

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September 27, 2006

GOP Picks 2008 Convention Site?

Republican officials are saying that there will be an announcement later today that the party has chosen the host city for it's 2008 Presidential Nominating Convention: Minneapolis-St. Paul.

It seems the rationale centers on the amount of local coverage that would saturate the states of Minnesota, Iowa and Wisconsin. Frankly, it makes sense. Of all the "Blue States" that the GOP have a chance of flipping, Minnesota and Wisconsin are probably the most logical (Iowa went for Bush in 2004, barely).

In 2004, John Kerry won Wisconsin by 11,384 votes (50% to 49%) and Minnesota by 98,319 votes (51% to 48%). All three states used to be reliable Democrat carries but the margins have gotten thinner in the last couple of election cycles. Minnesota was the only state won by Mondale in 1984 (it was his home state).

As far as party affiliation goes, the 2004 exit polls showed the following break-down:
IA: 36% Republican, 34% Democrat, 30% Independent
MN: 35% Republican, 38% Democrat, 27% Independent
WI: 38% Republican, 35% Democrat, 27% Independent

Had Bush carried Minnesota and Wisconsin in 2004, the Electoral College result would have been Bush: 306 v. Kerry: 232. That's a 40 vote swing - not insignificant.

It makes no sense to have the convention in a "Red State". Although its debatable how much influence the site has on the election itself, in a part of the country where the margin is so razor thin it can only help.

Any city in the Northeast or on the West Coast would not have made sense (though in 2004, a rebuilding NY City got a major economic shot in the arm by hosting the Republicans).

So if the "Red States" are getting redder and the "Blue States" are getting bluer, it makes sense to focus on the "Purple" ones. My initial impression here is that this was a good move. I can't help but wonder if this is part of a broader long-term strategy of the RNC.

UPDATE:
Captain Ed (a MN native) is pleased. And he also has the scoop on how the Dems lost out:

At the end, though, [Minneapolis Democrat Mayor R.T.] Rybak tried his best to get the Democrats to pull the trigger first. After hearing that the GOP had decided to go with the Twin Cities, Rybak called his party chair and warned him that the Democrats had to act fast if they wanted to get the nod. Dean couldn't get the DNC to make the decision, and the Republicans held the field. This doesn't necessarily mean that the Democrats couldn't also meet here, but it's unlikely, and that means they have given the GOP a golden opportunity to sweep the Upper Midwest in 2008.
Heh.

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Almost There...

Dow creeping up to new all time high (previous record high is 11,722).

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TO Almost ODs

Dallas police are reporting the Dallas Cowboys receiver, Terrell Owens, tried to off himself by swallowing a bunch of pills. Apparently, he was reportedly "depressed".

What is wrong with this idiot?

UPDATE:
T.O. says that's B.S.

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Leftards And Ahmadinejad...Perfect Together

Why not? They both hate Bush right? John at Wuzzadem shows a useful idiot and the Iranian nutball finding "common ground".

Warning: Finish your breakfast/morning coffee before clicking or you'll risk having it fly out your nose.

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September 26, 2006

"Read It For Yourself"

In response to a leak of the classified NIE memo - which only told part of the story on the state of Islamo-terrorism - the President has authorized National Intelligence Director, John Negroponte to declassify as much of the memo that can be done without compromising national security.

"You read it for yourself. Stop all this speculation," Bush said.

He complained that "somebody leaked classified information for political purposes," Bush said, criticizing both the news media and people in government who talked to them about classified material.

The initial leak, coming from Bush opponents in the intelligence community and shamelessly reported by the NY Times and WaPo, was a nakedly political move aimed at undermining the U.S.'s Global War On Terror in the heat of an election season. Those portions that were reported were selected specifically to give the impression that the U.S. presence in Iraq is a direct cause of increased terror activity around the world. As if such activity never existed prior to 2003.

And as if the Left and their MSM enablers weren't already doing enough to encourage America's enemies.

Michelle Malkin has the definitive round-up.

Prior to Bush's release order, House Democrats tried their best to make political hay of the report by pushing for a "closed-door" session to discuss it.

The proposal from House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., was denied by a vote of 171-217. Such a session hasn't happened in the House since July 1983, when the chamber went into a closed session to discuss the United States' support for paramilitary operations in Nicaragua.

In an interview with The Associated Press, Pelosi said the secret session was needed to allow members to better understand the intelligence community's most recent assessment on global terrorism, some of which leaked to the news media over the weekend.

"Better understand" it my ass. This was a blatant attempt to increase the drama by fanning the flames of speculation that somehow the Administration has something to hide in this report. How any reasonable person could consider voting for a party whose leadership would risk compromising national security by playing political games like this is beyond me.

Now that it will become public record, the proper context of the report and information that shows our military efforts and results in a more favorable light will put an end to that garbage.

The NY Times and the WaPo will now be free to report the parts that they didn't care to, such as those highlighted by "Spook86", the author of "In From The Cold" (Originally linked by the folks at Power Line):

In one of its early paragraphs, the estimate notes progress in the struggle against terrorism, stating the U.S.-led efforts have "seriously damaged Al Qaida leadership and disrupted its operations." Didn't see that in the NYT article.

Or how about this statement, which--in part--reflects the impact of increased pressure on the terrorists: "A large body of reporting indicates that people identifying themselves as jihadists is increasing...however, they are largely decentralized, lack a coherent strategy and are becoming more diffuse." Hmm...doesn't sound much like Al Qaida's pre-9-11 game plan.

The report also notes the importance of the War in Iraq as a make or break point for the terrorists: "Should jihadists leaving Iraq perceive themselves to have failed, we judge that fewer will carry on the fight." It's called a ripple effect.

More support for the defeating the enemy on his home turf: "Threats to the U.S. are intrinsically linked to U.S. success or failure in Iraq." President Bush and senior administration officials have made this argument many times--and it's been consistently dismissed by the "experts" at the WaPo and Times.

And, some indication that the "growing" jihad may be pursuing the wrong course: "There is evidence that violent tactics are backfiring...their greatest vulnerability is that their ultimate political solution (shar'a law) is unpopular with the vast majority of Muslims." Seems to contradict MSM accounts of a jihadist tsunami with ever-increasing support in the global Islamic community.

The estimate also affirms the wisdom of sowing democracy in the Middle East: "Progress toward pluralism and more responsive political systems in the Muslim world will eliminate many of the grievances jihadists exploit." As I recall, this the core of our strategy in Afghanistan and Iraq.

Quite a contrast to the "doom and gloom" scenario painted by the Times and the Post. Not that we'd expect anything different. But the obvious slant of their coverage does raise an interesting question, one that should be posed to their ombudsman or public editor. If sources used by the papers had access to the document, why weren't they asked about the positive elements of the report? Or, if sources provided some of the more favorable comments regarding our war on terror, why weren't those featured in articles published by the Times and the Post?

(note: all original bold/italics emphasis appears as it does on "In From The Cold" blog)

As the President said, read it for yourself.

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The Real "Wild" Bill

Dick Morris reminds us that the Bill Clinton we saw on FoxNews this weekend is the Bill Clinton that those who worked closely with him knew all too well:

From behind the benign façade and the tranquilizing smile, the real Bill Clinton emerged Sunday during Chris Wallace’s interview on Fox News Channel. There he was on live television, the man those who have worked for him have come to know – the angry, sarcastic, snarling, self-righteous, bombastic bully, roused to a fever pitch. The truer the accusation, the greater the feigned indignation. Clinton jabbed his finger in Wallace’s face, poking his knee, and invading the commentator’s space.

But beyond noting the ex-president’s non-presidential style, it is important to answer his distortions and misrepresentations. His self-justifications constitute a mangling of the truth which only someone who once quibbled about what the “definition of ‘is’ is” could perform.

Morris then goes on to poke holes in many of the former President's assertions that he made in that interview. As someone who was once a close confidant and adviser, Morris is nonetheless comfortable sharing his experiences with Clinton. He parted ways with the Clintonistas years ago and no longer fears Bubba's wrath.

On a related note, The Anchoress has a rather lengthy and well written analysis of Clinton's "daddy" issues - a must-read.

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September 25, 2006

Meme: You Know You've Reached Middle Age, When...

I got tagged with this one, so here goes...

- you take several days before you accept the premise that you are actually middle-aged before you agree to do this meme...

- you've learned to walk through your house while looking down to avoid stepping on stray lego pieces...

- you didn't even know that Saturday Night Live was still on the air...

- the only reason you've heard of the band Bowling For Soup is because you just love that song "1985"...

- when they card you for beer at the supermarket check-out, it makes your week.

That's all for me. So let's see. Now I'm tagging GroovyVic, Steve and Robbo (the Llama Butchers) and Rick, The Real Ugly American.

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Closer Examination Of Lamont Raises Questions

The Hartford Courant has an editorial up that takes a look at what Ned Lamont says compared to what Ned Lamont does.

The public has to look at the fragments it can find of Lamont's private life to figure out what sort of public figure he would be. The man who seemed a fresh force in the spring is starting to look like a contrivance as the fall begins. Here are some examples:

Lamont, like all Democratic candidates, has been in hot pursuit of union endorsements. Lieberman snagged most of them in the primary campaign. Most, but by no means all, have stuck with Lieberman.

In his cable business, however, Lamont has not been so eager for union attention. At one conclave, Lamont gave the cold shoulder to Bill Henderson, president of Communications Workers of CT Local 1298, when Henderson had the temerity to suggest to the cable executive that he ought to let the union into Lamont Digital.

When Henderson, a Lieberman supporter, complained in public about Lamont's anti-union attitude in his own business, registered lobbyist and Lamont campaign manager Tom Swan called it a "red herring" because Lamont's employees are well compensated. But Henderson points out that unions aren't only about wages. They also secure better working conditions and the dignity of their members. Lamont and, suddenly, Swan aren't interested in the union credo.

Candidate Lamont is keen to call for more corporate responsibility from the likes of Wal-Mart and Enron. He made the obligatory appearance at a protest of Wal-Mart this summer.

Lamont, however, won't say much about corporate shenanigans closer to home. His wife, Ann Lamont, is a formidable venture capitalist. And while piling up their millions, there have been a few casualties. The Lamonts won't disclose details, but public documents reveal that Ann Lamont was successfully sued for securities fraud in 1999 for her role in a disastrous public offering of stock by a Florida medical management company that went bust in a big way. Ann Lamont and other defendants entered into a multimillion-dollar settlement with fleeced shareholders.

Some of the records are sealed, and the Lamont campaign won't reveal how much of the settlement Ann Lamont had to pay in 2001 to get out of the mess. Substitute the name of, say, Lynne Cheney for Ann Lamont and imagine the outrage on the left for such a doomed scheme.

Ned Lamont has no substantive experience in public service on a scale that would qualify him to be Joe Lieberman's replacement in the U.S. Sentate. We can only look to his experience in the private sector to get a feel for what he brings to the table. As far as I can see, all he brings is a plateful of virulent Left-wing supporters with a side order of hypocrisy.

As the campaign spotlight shines a little brighter on the Greenwich millionaire who wants to be CT's next Senator, voters - especially unaffiliated, moderate voters - should take the opportunity to have a closer look.

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RINO Sightings

This week's Carnival is up at Tinkerty-Tonk!

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Ex-Presidents Gone Wild

OK, since the big Bill blow-up on FoxNews has already been covered to death, I'm only going to make one link and one comment.

First, Hugh Hewitt has - in my opinion - the best assessment on this bizarre incident:

Bill Clinton's record vis-a-vis Osama cannot withstand even two minutes of sharp questions-and-answers. He's obliged to tightly control every encounter with the press, denounce every serious work of history, obfuscate by pointing to meeting after meeting or to non-sequitors like the fact that no one knew at the time that Osama was connected to Mogadishu (but when, Mr. Clinton, did you become aware of his connection), legal tap dancing --the FBI and CIA wouldn't let me do it-- and the worst of all, chest thumping about how he'd be waging the war if he was still president.

Whatever Clinton hoped to accomplish with this childish filibuster and tantrum, it guaranteed the opposite: No such fury is required when the facts are on your side. You don't have to control every encounter and explode with anger and accusations when asked if you would like to comment on a new book.

Bottom Line: Suck it up Bill. It's not all about you. The ball was dropped on terrorism for almost two decades before you came along. Be a man. Take some responsibility and - for God's sake - get over yourself and your precious legacy. It's really pathetic.

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