Following are year-end honors for Minnesota’s 6th Congressional District U.S. Representative Michele Bachmann that couldn’t be accommodated in my December 31, 2008 MN-06 Year in Review.
By Michael Tomasky
December 21, 2008
I hereby dedicate my year-end column to ranking some of the worst Americans of the year. …
Herewith, the Tomasky List of the 19 Worst Americans of 2008.
[Following are the top five only.]
5 - Michele Bachmann. Of the many memorable moments the campaign produced, I will never forget watching this Minnesota congresswoman say on national TV in October that Obama “may have anti-American views” and endorse the idea of a media investigation of all members of Congress to determine whether their views were sufficiently pro-American. The single most appalling political statement of the year.
4 - Rod Blagojevich. “Whatever I say is always lawful, whatever I’m interested in doing is always lawful.” Uh-huh. Depending on what comes out at his trial, he’s a strong contender for an even higher spot in 2009.
3 - George Bush. There were years when he would have been higher – 2000, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006 and 2007. I’ll give him a slight pass for 2001, what with the attacks and all that. In those previous years, he stole an election, started an unnecessary war, lied about it, approved torture, let a great US city drown and so on. This year he merely presided over the bankruptcy of the global economy. Twenty days and counting.
2 - Sarah Palin. Does she really deserve to be this high? Never in my adult lifetime has one politician so perfectly embodied everything that is malign about my country: the proto-fascist nativism, the know-nothingism, the utterly cavalier lack of knowledge about the actual principles on which the country was founded. So, heck, you betcha she does!
1 - Bernard Madoff. It’s pronounced “made-off.” Could Dickens have named him better? Bilking people and institutions out of $50bn is a pretty surefire way to make yourself No 1 with a bullet on anyone’s year-end bad guys’ list.
Well, here’s to a better 2009, for America, the world, and you and yours. And keep yer nose clean.
By Emily Kaiser
City Pages (Minneapolis)
December 31, 2008
[Rep. Bachmann was first runner-up, featuring twice in the Top 9.]
We both cringed and celebrated when Rep. Michele Bachmann made her epic appearance on MSNBC’s Hardball. Bachmann told Chris Matthews that the media should do a penetrating expose on all members of Congress to find any with anti-American views. Democrats thought this was their chance to squash Bachmann’s chances of winning reelection. We just liked having something to write about for weeks as Bachmann spun herself and her story in circles.
Rep. Michele Bachmann said a lot of crazy things this year. People in Congress are quick to point fingers, so why not take the easy route and blame the people on the bottom? Bachmann read into the legislative record that a federal program that gave home mortgage loans “on the basis of race and often on little else” was to blame for the banking crisis. Rep. Keith Ellison, along with the Congressional Black Caucus were outraged. Bachmann still says she isn’t racist.
Following are security developments in Iraq on Jan. 5, 2009, as reported by Reuters.
KIRKUK – Two people were killed and one wounded in a drive-by shooting in northern Kirkuk, 155 miles north of Baghdad, police said. The victims were drinking alcohol in the street, police said.
MOSUL – Unknown gunmen entered a pharmacy and killed a student pharmacist in Mosul, 240 miles north of Baghdad, police said.
MOSUL – A car bomb wounded two Iraqi soldiers and four civilians when it struck an Iraqi army patrol in northern Mosul, police said.
MOSUL – Gunmen, one wearing a medical uniform, shot and seriously wounded a medical student at the hospital where he worked in Mosul, police said.
BAGHDAD – A roadside bomb killed three policemen and wounded six people, including three policemen, when it targeted a police patrol near central Baghdad’s National al-Sha’ab stadium, police said.
BAGHDAD – Two roadside bombs exploded in quick succession, wounding eight people, in central Baghdad’s Karrada district, police said.
BAGHDAD – Four people were wounded by a roadside bomb in al-Nidhal Street, central Baghdad, police said.
BAGHDAD – A car bomb wounded five people in the Abu Dsheer district of southern Baghdad, police said.
BAGHDAD – The body of a man was found in eastern Baghdad on Sunday, police said.
Jan. 5, 2009
BAGHDAD – Despite repeated warnings, U.S. officials blindly foisted a Western-style democracy on Iraq, helping plunge it into sectarian bloodshed and a political morass, a former U.S.-installed prime minister said on Monday.
“I told President Bush many times. I said we should not photocopy the model of the United States” in Iraq, Iyad Allawi, selected interim prime minister in 2004 by a council hand-picked by U.S. officials, said in an interview with Reuters. …
Allawi, a secular Shi’ite who led Iraq for nearly a year at a time when U.S. officials still held many levers of power, had a scathing assessment of Washington’s management in close to six years since the U.S.-led invasion to oust Saddam Hussein.
Despite a sharp improvement from the horrific sectarian bloodshed of 2006 and 2007, Allawi described a country still held hostage to religious and ethnic rivalries, one in which ministries remain party fiefdoms and reconciliation is elusive. …
He said elections held in Iraq in 2005 — in which he lost the premiership after his secular party performed poorly and major religious parties gained strength — were premature.
He compared the U.S. decision to hasten elections in Iraq with Washington’s support for a vote in the Palestinian territories that was won by U.S. foe Hamas in 2006. …
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