A well-credentialed military vet, retired now in Arkansas, calls attention to a couple of news articles -- one past and one present.
WASHINGTON - Up to two-thirds of the Army's combat brigades are not ready for wartime missions, largely because they are hampered by equipment shortfalls, Democratic lawmakers said Wednesday, citing unclassified documents.
In a letter to President Bush, Rep. Ike Skelton of Missouri, the top Democrat on the House Armed Services Committee, said that "nearly every non-deployed combat brigade in the active Army is reporting that they are not ready" for combat. The figures, he said, represent an unacceptable risk to the nation.
At a news conference, other leading Democrats said that those strategic reserve forces are critically short of personnel and equipment.
The earlier article, from Aug. 2000, when the current president was running, unsuccessfully, for the office the first time:
WASHINGTON (CNN) -- Despite Pentagon assurances that all of the U.S. Army's divisions are "fit to fight and ready to deploy," Republican presidential nominee George W. Bush refused Friday to concede that the U.S. military is combat-ready.
"No, I would not concede that necessarily," Bush told CNN's Candy Crowley on his campaign train headed toward Akron, Ohio. "I'm amazed that they would put out a statement right after our convention.
The U.S. Army said Friday that Bush was wrong when he said in his speech Thursday night to the Republican National Convention that two of the Army's 10 divisions were not ready to fight.
Bush had said: "If called on by the commander-in-chief today, two entire divisions of the Army would have to report ..., 'Not ready for duty, sir.'"
But Maj. Thomas Collins, an Army spokesman, told CNN: "All 10 Army divisions are combat-ready, fully able to meet their war-fighting mission."
Thanks to Robert for the research that illustrates Bush talk in 2000 vs. Bush action today. And to Tim, for a polling report on the jump that I just couldn't resist passing along.
LATEST POLLING SHOWS BUSH LOSING SUPPORT FROM KEY GROUP
WASHINGTON - President Bush appears to be losing support among a key group of voters who had hitherto stood firmly with the president even as his poll numbers among other groups fell dramatically.
A new Gallup poll shows that, for the first time, Bush's approval rating has fallen below 50% among total fucking morons, and now stands at 44%. This represents a dramatic drop compared to a poll taken just last December, when 62% of total fucking morons expressed support for the president and his policies.
The current poll, conducted by phone with 1,409 total fucking morons between May 4 and May 8, reveals that only 44% of those polled believe the president is doing a good job, while 27% believe he is doing a poor job and 29% don't understand the question.
The December poll, conducted by phone with 1,530 total fucking morons, showed 62 approved of the president, 7% disapproved and 31% didn't understand the question.
Faltering approval ratings for the president among a group once thought to be a reliable source of loyal support gives Republicans one more reason to be nervous about the upcoming mid-term elections. "If we can't depend on the support of total fucking morons," says Sen. Rick Santorum (R-PA), "then we've got a big problem. They're a key factor in our electoral strategy, and an important part of today's Republican coalition."
"We've taken the total fucking moron vote for granted," says Rep. Tom Feeney (R-FL), "and now we're paying for it. We've let the Democrats control the debate lately, and they've dragged discourse back into the realm of complex, nuanced issues. So your average total fucking moron turns on his TV and sees his Republican Congressman arguing about Constitutional law or the complexities of state formation in the Middle East, and he tunes out. He wants to hear comforting, pandering, flattering bromides and he doesn't want to hear a logical argument more complex than what you'd find on a bumper sticker."
For Feeney, the poll is a dire warning that Republicans can ignore only at their peril. "This should send a signal that we have to regain controlof the debate if we want the support of our key constituencies in the coming election and beyond. We need to bring public discourse back into the realm of stupidity and vacuity. We should be talking about homosexual illegal immigrants burning flags. We should be talking about the power of pride. We should be talking about freedom fries. These are the issues that resonate with total fucking morons."
But some total fucking morons say it's too late. Bill Snarpel of Enid, Oklahoma is a total fucking moron who voted for Bush in both 2000 and 2004. But he says he won't be voting for Bush in 2008. "I don't like it that he was going to sell our ports to the Arabs. If the Arabs own the ports then that means they'll let all the Arabs in and then we'll all be riding camels and wearing towels on our heads. I don't want my children singing the Star Spangled Banner in Muslim."
Total fucking moron Kurt Meyer of Turlock,California also says his once solid support for Bush has collapsed. "He invaded Iraq and all those soldiers died, and for what? We destroyed all their WMDs, but now their new president is making fun of us and saying he's going to build nuclear bombs and that we can't stop him. Well, nuclear bombs are even worse than WMDs, so what did we accomplish?"
Laura McDonald, a total fucking moron from Chandler,Arizona, says she is disappointed that the president hasn't been a more forceful advocate of Christian values. "This country was founded on Christian values," she says, "but you'd never know it looking around and seeing all the Mexicans running around. I thought Bush was going to bring Jesus back into the government. Instead, Christians are being persecuted worse than ever before in history, because all these Mexicans come here and tell Christians that we have to respect their religious beliefs. So now it's illegal for children to pray in school. Soon it will be illegal for them to speak English."
Not all total fucking morons have turned their backs on the president. Jeb Larkin of Topeka,Kansas says he still fully supports Bush. "He is doing a great job. He is a great president. He is a great decider. I have a puppy. His tail sticks straight up and you can see his butthole."
And not all Republican lawmakers are concerned about the poll. Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-TN), for one, does not find it a cause for anxiety. While he agrees that his party should not take total fucking morons for granted, they "really don't have anywhere else to go. They're never going to be able to understand someone like Al Gore or John Kerry or anybody intelligent and articulate who wants to talk about substantive issues. Just try having a conversation with one of them about global warming. They'll say, 'Oh, but Rush says volcanoes consume more ozone than humans do.' I mean, they're morons! Total fucking morons!"
"They've got nowhere else to go," Alexander reaffirms with a smile, "and they always vote."
(Note: We don't know the source. But sounds like The Onion.)