Shock of the Week: Kucinich Pushes for Bush Impeachment

Rep. Dennis Kucinich of my hometown Cleveland, OH, pulled a lttle shock and awe of his own yesterday, when he bucked the wishes of the Democratic Party and introduced 35 articles of impeachment for lame duck President George W. Bush. Kucinich is very popular in Cleveland, the “bluest” of Ohio cities, and certainly among Progressives nationwide, when he began running for President in 2000.

The reality is in practical terms this is probably not going to go anywhere. Nancy Pelosi has said that she didn’t want to move forward with impeachment procedures, as it would be too divisive, especially (I think) in this election year. But you gotta love Kucinich for trying

Here’s a snippet of his introduction of the articles of impeachment:

New Orleans: Army Corps Washed Away Accountability

My good friend Davell Crawford (the Piano Prince of New Orleans) recently covered a classic Randy Newman song called Louisiana 1927 (you can hear it by going to his home page). The lyrics chronicle the Mississippi Flood of 1927, and in Newman’s lyrics, he declares “They tryin’ to wash us away.” Davell re-writes a lyric originally about President Calvin Coolidge, and replaces him with George W. Bush.

Maybe they really are trying to wash “us” away again. It’s interesting that yesterday, John Edwards chose New Orleans to announce the halting of his presidential bid, that a federal judge begrudgingly threw out a clas action suit by the people of New Orleans against the Army Corps of Engineers.

The Associated Press reported that “Judge Stanwood Duval said he was forced by law to hold the Corps immune even though the agency failed to ‘cast a blind eye’ in protecting New Orleans and ‘squandered millions of dollars in building a levee system … which was known to be inadequate by the Corps’ own calculations.’ But, Duval said, ‘it is not within the Court’s power to address the wrongs committed. It is hopefully within the citizens of the United States’ power to address the failures of our laws and agencies.'”

What’s so sinister is the ruling was based on a law written conspicuously after the 1927 flood–the Flood Control Act of 1928–which made the federal government immune from lawsuits when flood control projects like levees break.

* * *

I was in the 9th ward just a few weeks ago–the week leading into MLK Day. It was the first time I had been back since Spring of 2005, and I had lived in New Orleans for a year. The failures of the city, state and federal government are so egregious that it is difficult to imagine that they are in fact, failures, and not actually a contrived negligence. And the failure, conspiracy or negligence (you choose!) that caused the death and displacement in the aftermath of the hurricane Katrina, is not so much about the weather. It’s about the profound racism that forced hundreds of thousands of Black people into the conditions that would mean their certain demise just by virtue of being redlined for generations on the downside of a canal, or kept in substandard public housing. Or warehoused in Orleans Parish Prison.

I was accosted one night in the French Quarter during my trip 2 weeks ago by 2 unidentified plain clothes security officers who looked like professional wrestlers–and I know they were not the NOPD. I was accused of trying to rob my friends I was just a few feet behind on my bike. So for those of us who weren’t washed away in the storm, or carted off to destinations all across the nation–the prison and the jailer awaits.

They tryin to wash us away–and absolve themselves of the responsibility.

Non-Shock of The Week: Report Shows Bush & Crew Lied A Lot to Justify Iraq War

It may not come as a surprise to you, but the Bush Administration (including George W. himself) orchestrated a PR campaign full of lies and untruths to justify going to war in Iraq, according to a new report issued by the Center for Public Integrity and the Fund for Independence in Journalism.

Hadn’t this already been determined? I mean, I knew they were lying from jump (they were talking after all, weren’t they? That whole “Bush Lied” campaign is tired. We know that. And he doesn’t give a fuck, nor do the people who continue to support him. Now what?), and story after story has shown that they knew they were bullshitting from the beginning. But oh well. I guess yet another study will hammer the point home. Here’s what they found:

“President George W. Bush and seven of his administration’s top officials, including Vice President Dick Cheney, National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice, and Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, made at least 935 false statements in the two years following September 11, 2001, about the national security threat posed by Saddam Hussein’s Iraq. Nearly five years after the U.S. invasion of Iraq, an exhaustive examination of the record shows that the statements were part of an orchestrated campaign that effectively galvanized public opinion and, in the process, led the nation to war under decidedly false pretenses.

On at least 532 separate occasions (in speeches, briefings, interviews, testimony, and the like), Bush and these three key officials, along with Secretary of State Colin Powell, Deputy Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz, and White House press secretaries Ari Fleischer and Scott McClellan, stated unequivocally that Iraq had weapons of mass destruction (or was trying to produce or obtain them), links to Al Qaeda, or both. This concerted effort was the underpinning of the Bush administration’s case for war.”

Now, I think this probably deserved more attention in the news this week than it got. But really, is it a shocker?