A place to rant about politics, the media, and especially the electorate. Much like alcohol, the electorate is both the cause of, and the solution to, all of America's problems.

Location: Seattle, Washington

Tuesday, September 28, 2004

So I'm in a bar.....

.... drinking a beer, and smoking...... I do that.....

A wicken meeting is about to begin at the table next to me, and the next one as well. One mother comes in with a lil tot (4yo max) with her. She seats the lil tot in a chair right next to my table. Where I'm smoking. Another mother comes in, with an even smaller tot - mebbe 1 yo. She sets up a high chair on the opposite side of my table. Where I'm smoking.


Are smokers the only ones with sense enough to not put their tots right next to a smoker?

Background: The bar has essentially 3 sections - two of them are smoking, and one is nonsmoking. So it makes one wonder why they started sitting in a smoking section in the first fucking place. None of the early arrivals smoked, so far as I could tell. None of the wicken-affiliated, so far as I could tell, so much as batted an eye at the combination tots/smoking.

Sheesh. This is our electorate.

Baby steps... from Crawford TX of all places...

Don't take my vitriolic rants as hopelessness. Rather they're aimed at focussing attention at what I take to be fundamental problems that rarely - if ever - get addressed. Even the good guys are, IMHO, distracted by glamourous symptoms, and miss some fundamentals.

There are lots of things happening that give me cause for hope. The most recent I heard about was that gdub's hometown (in a carpetbagging sense) newspaper has endorsed Kerry. And for essentially all the right reasons. In short, gdub is a mean, stupid, lying, incompetent jackass:

hmm.... looking for a suitable snippet.... having trouble.... the whole damn 500-ish word essay is all so damn good..... ok, here we go....

"The Iconoclast wholeheartedly endorses John Kerry."

Consider the source, and read the entire Kerry endorsement/Bush indictment - it's beautiful.

Baby steps baby, baby steps...

Comedy Central 1, o'reilly 0

LOL - I saw the o'reilly interview with Jon Stewart where the little o called CC people "stoned slackers". Stewart had the look of "oh my god - you're an even bigger jackass that *I* thought you were - and that's a high bar to hurdle". LOL

Anyhoo - CC has come back with a study showing that CC viewers are more likely to have gone to college than o'reilly viewers.

(If it weren't so funny, I'd be inclined to bitch at the commissioning of this study, as it's of the "let's do a study to see whether or not there's sexism in the workplace variety.)

Given o'reilly's predictability, it's easy to see his response - some kind of jibe as elitist ivory tower university types who have nothing in common with the common man.

(Yes, there are ties to my rants about stupid-ified Americans - intelligence and edumacatedness is now looked down upon by huge parts of the country.)

None of the good guys quite gets it... still...

I love Josh Marshall, and I love Krugman even more. Both very bright, insightful, yadayadayada. In the linked articles, they're bitching about the jackass media's debate coverage. And rightly so, as far as it goes - but neither of them seems to have caught on to the fact that such things take place in an environment that allows it. That environment is the consumers of media products - the public.

Kos, Drum, Marshall, Krugman, and the rest can bitch about republicans and the media all they want - to a large degree they're doomed to failure because suppliers only care what the consumer thinks - not commentators. (Similarly, movie producers can look on at Siskel & Ebert with equanimity, while their movies rake in jillions of dollars.)

Let me state it baldly: there will be no rehabilitation of either republicans or the media independent from a more general resuscitation of the public.

It's as if Kos, et al are trying to come up with ways of bailing water faster, while the chainsaw attack on the boat continues unabated.

Or like a saying/fable I 1/2 recall, about two folks saving babies from drowning in a river, and one guy gets sick of it, and takes off, to the other's consternation. After a bit, the periodic appearance of floating babies ceases, and the guy who left comes back, saying he went and popped the jackass who was throwing the damn babies in the damn river.

One more way to put it: Tom Petty had the right of it in Refugee:

Somewhere, somehow somebody
Must have kicked you around some
Tell me why you wanna lay there
And revel in your abandon
Listen it don't make no difference to me baby
Everybody's had to fight to be free
You see you don't have to live like a refugee

The media and the republicans are merely SYMPTOMS of the problem folks. The root is a weak, apathetic, and intellecutally underdeveloped and malleable public.

As long as we (the people) act like stereotypical powerless girls getting raped by big powerful evil black (damn stereotypes) men, we'll continue to get raped like it. If we stop acting like bitches, we'll stop getting fucked like bitches (Pulp Fiction adaptation).

But in any case, my main point is: institutions are an embodiment of the general public. While small, specifc institutional problems might be fixable by reference only to the institution, more wide-ranging and fundamental problems may only be fixed by reference to the larger public environment within which they exist.

And until bigwigs like Krugman, Marshall, Drum, Atrios, Kos, and the rest start getting the word out, we're not going anywhere.

EDIT: In fairness, it seems to me that Howard Dean is largely of the same opinion as I am re: the fundamentals vs symptoms issue. Because he actually talks to real live people, he can't speak so baldly as I can, but I think he's largely there... That's about the only bigwig I can think of though.......

Small, but only in Gdub's America....

Was outside smoking, calming down from the previous rant - someone had put fliers on the parked cars. The title was "Recession Car Repair". I don't know if that's the name of the actual establishment, or if it's only the name of the promotion - but it doesn't really matter, does it?

Starve the beast - military style.... and a rant...

Apparently, about 1/3 of a group of reservists (IRR) who've been called up to go kill and be killed in Iraq have refused the invitation.

Good for them. Fuck Norquist. Fuck Perle. Fuck Wolfowitz. Fuck Rumsfeld. Fuck Bush. Fuck Rove. Fuck all those on their team who know they're wrong but refuse to stop it - especially Powell and McCain. Fuck the Democrat pussies who were so serious about a Kerry/McCain ticket. Fuck pollsters who load the dice with 12% more republicans, and fuck the media that reports a 12% Bush lead in the polls. Fuck Nader voters who can't tell a difference between sustenence and shit. But most importantly, fuck an idiotic electorate that allows such aforementioned evils to exist. If this wasn't the best team in the league, I'd ask to be traded.

Actually, that last isn't quite right. Fuck those other Democratic pussies who continually talk about fleeing to other countries because of the republicans. We're teammates goddam it. We don't leave each other behind - we help the confused among us get better - no matter how uncomfortable it is for us. Christ - after all that America has been through - some Democrats wanna give up on the Great Experiement because of BUSH?!?!?? Gimme a fuckin break. Pussies.

America might end up being a failed experiment, but I'll be damned if Bush gets the credit for it.

Ahhh... that felt good.

On the intellectual side, there's a lot to be said about this issue - and it's only one facet of an even larger issue. I need to think through it a bit, and it'll probably take several posts to get it all out. Suffice it for now to say that the story will involves concepts like the distinction between Socrates/Crito/Kantian thinking and the addition that Kuhn's "scientific revolutions" gave us. Names like Thoreau, Jefferson, King, and the rest are relevant to this Kuhnian addition.

I'll be back when I have it (somewhat) properly sorted out.

Monday, September 27, 2004

Finally a republican tells it like it is!

This argument has been known and understood by anyone with half a brain for awhile. It is so completely asinine that no republican with half a brain (yes there are a few) has ever been willing to baldly state it. Until now. Chris Matthews goaded Orin Hatch into putting it out in all its dark glory today on Hardball. I don't have the transcript, but the argument, such as it is, goes like this:

If we aren't attacked by terrorists before election day, that's evidence of Bush's skill in fighting the war on terrorism, and hence he ought to be re-elected.

If we are attacked by terrorists before election day, then Bush can't be blamed, because they have to be right every time, and the terrorists only have to be right once, and besides, the terrorists want Kerry to be elected anyway. Therefore, in this case also, Bush ought to be re-elected.

Hence, Bush ought to be re-elected.

I'm not going to bother with critical anaylsis of this idiotic argument. If you're in need of such analysis, (a) read Drum, Atrios, Kos, and Josh Marshall, and (b) you're probably to stupid for such an analysis to be helpful anyway.

What I am taken with, however, is how blithely Hatch was willing to explicitly state this argument. Matthews lead him into it for sure, but pundits ask leading questions all the time - it's pretty rare for guests to fall for them. Which makes me conclude that Hatch didn't fall for it, properly speaking, but rather it was decided somewhere within the republican brain trust that the long term dumbing-down-of-America plan had finally achieved its climax, and such arguments could now be stated publically.

The pied piper was on Hardball this afternoon (PST) - it remains to be seen whether or not the rats will follow.

Saturday, September 25, 2004

To the electorate: This is aimed right at you!

Check out this CNN article, it's title is "Bush Questions Kerry's Credibility".

Classic up-is-down-ism.

Allawi an ally? Christ. That's like calling Saudi Arabia, well, an ally. LOL. I still can't believe that people out there believe this crap....

Bush administration guilty of price-fixing and racketeering!

What a bunch of assholes..... I mean the dairy farmers in Wisconsin who have happily sold their souls to the devil for the transitory bliss of high milk prices.

Larry Salathe is an economist for the USDA. He gave a presentation at a dairy conference in Chicago during which he spilled the beans:

One of Salathe's first slides was titled "USDA 2004 Goals and Objectives" next to a drawing of an elephant and a donkey boxing. It went on to say the goal was to attract the maximum number of votes from major dairy states: California, Wisconsin, Minnesota, New York and Michigan.

The next slide said that could be done by maintaining "strong milk prices through market fundamentals, supportive policy actions."

To my Wisconsonian countrymen - beware. They don't care one whit about you. They're using you. As my good friend JC Watts learned, they'd as soon shit on you as spit on you. You had better hope that more forgiving people than me are around when they do, or else you're gonna be SOL.

Postcards from the edge....

Now THIS is what I'm talkin' about. THIS is what I want to see republicans doing. And if they can still get people to vote for them, then so much worse for the people.

 Posted by Hello

 Posted by Hello

Toon time...

I love the Democratic Underground. I would love it more if they hadn't kicked me out like 8 times, but hey - you can't have everything, right?

Anyhoo, here's their semi-weekly thread with a jillion or so great political cartoons. Posted by Hello

Atrios nails it.....

asshole.... (just jealous joking)

"Bush Rapes Child on White House Lawn, News on Nov. 3

One wonders if CBS will realize that two wrongs do not actually make a right. I guess they've bought into the New Journalism, in which the facts themselves are partisan, and thus shouldn't be reported."

That is an interesting way to characterize the Bush administration's great - and possible only - success: they've made facts into partisan objects. That's one way of looking at the differences between Bush and Nixon.

Of course, it couldn't have been done without a pliable public....

Democrats want to marry terrorists!

There's getting to be a bit more of a hullaboo than is usual about the despicability (word?) of republicans telling America that Democrats are traitors. It is despicable.

But that's ok. I, for one, don't want them to stop. I have a more agressive view about these matters than many Democrats - this election is not anything like a "referendum" on Bush, or even on Kerry.

It's a test for Americans to find out whether or not they deserve America.

I want the republicans to do their worst. Tell the public that every Democrat has nigger babies. Tell the public that every Democrat wants to fuck every man up the ass. And so on.

And on the flip side, let the Democrats keep talking about the total incompetence of our military's civilian leaders. And keep talking about eliminating the cronyism in health care and elsewhere. And keep talking about taxing the rich and the poor fairly. And keep talking about strengthening our moral position in the world.

Then let the public vote. That's what I call a clear choice.

If in the wake of such a campaign, the people still vote for Bush, then they deserve him.

I feel similarly about, say, allowing KKK marches to be held. I say let 'em. The mere existence of such groups is an indictment of the larger public itself. They wouldn't want to go downtown or on national television if there weren't a substantial sympathetic audience.

We are the ones being tested, folks. Not Bush, and not Kerry. Us. Falling for republican talking points is one way to fail. Falling for media "some say..." crap is another. There are a lot of ways to fail, and only one way to succeed. Rock on.

Congress shall make no law abridging the freedom of the press...

Except if the press fucks up - then they're out. One and done. And especially especially if "rights-loving"* freepers attack, Then they're definitely out.

CBS was going to do a segment on Iraq/forged Niger documents, but they've killed it:

The Iraq segment had been ready for broadcast on Sept. 8, CBS said, but was bumped at the last minute for the segment on Mr. Bush's National Guard service. The Guard segment was considered a highly competitive report, one that other journalists were pursuing.

CBS said last night that the report on the war would not run before Nov. 2.

"We now believe it would be inappropriate to air the report so close to the presidential election," the spokeswoman, Kelli Edwards, said in a statement.

I for one think they made the right decision. Moreover, I wish such decision making had been in place 30 years ago during Watergate - it was MUCH too close to an election for a free press to tell the truth. Sheesh.

In football, there's a type of position called "defensive back". Basically they're the ones whose job it is to intercept passes thrown by the offense's quarterback. Concerning defensive backs, there's a stock saying: "DBs have to have a short memory". They get balls thrown at them play after play. Sooner or later the guy they're covering is going to catch one. DBs can't afford to wallow in such failures, because there's another play starting in 30 seconds. Similarly on the flip side. The DB doesn't have time to exult in the glory of a great play, because, well, there's another play starting in 30 seconds.

It seems to me that CBS is wallowing in their failure, and indeed has had the coach pull them from the game and put them on the bench.

What a bunch of pussies.

* Just so no one is confused: Freepers love protecting their rights. They also love infringing on others'.

Friday, September 24, 2004

Have you stopped beating your wife?

"Have you stopped distributing anti-semitic literature?"

Most of us can say that the question contains a false assumption. Unfortunately, WalMart can't.

Ok, I'm out for real now. If I post again within the next six hours, I'll be drunk. So please don't hold what I say against me.


Jeez kids are stupid.....

Of course, they're supposed to be - that's why we call them "kids"...

Was just watching Dateline NBC - they did a special on sexual predators in internet chat rooms. In brief: Dateline posed as 13/14 year old boys and girls in chat rooms, and arranged for a whole bunch of men to come over, supposedly to have sex with them. Dateline then confronted the molesters/rapists, and they all gave their own sob stories. Dateline then took the tape to parents in the neighborhood, and kids in the neighborhood.

Really bad things ought to happen to each and every one of the molester/rapists. If you have something really graphic and disgusting in mind, then we're probably on the same wavelength.

That takes care of one side of the problem.

The kids were completely shocked that such a thing could ever happen. Fools. But then, that's another part of why they're called "kids". The parents of any kid who's shocked at that need to be shot. Or something.

Being a parent doesn't just mean feeding the little monsters, it also involves - harsh though it may sound - controlling them. Kids have no self-control - again, that's why we call them "kids".

Lastly, one of the kids - female of course - was dressed/made up FAR above her age level. She looked like what one might call a "hoochie". Dateline never asked if she would continue to present that exterior to the world, and maybe - maybe - that's ok. Dateline never asked the parents either. That's unforgivable.


Time for me to have a beer - maybe sex too. But with an adult for fuck's sake.

Peace out.

You ARE the weakest link - hello!

There are a number of reasons why it's unlikely that anyone will read this blog for any substantial amount of time, but my repeated harping on the foibles of the electorate is likely to be one of the more important ones.

I just caught a piece of a CNN interview with a small gaggle of PA voters, and was saddened. Yet again. Here are a few of the comments I recall, along with my glosses.

contra Kerry: don't have a connection with him

So fucking what?!?!? When the hell did you get so important that "having a connection" became a requirement for being a good POTUS? Christ.

contra Kerry: he bores me

So fucking what? Or better: GOOD! He has to deal with POLICY, the entire field of which probably bores you! He'll be taking care of stuff so you don't have to, you illiterate uncurious hick!

This idea that the POTUS has to be, should be, or is better off being entertaining has got to be one of the most idiotic things I regularly hear from the public. But rather than only bitching about it, I'll be helpful. Here's a list of characteristics that suffice to make a good POTUS. Of course other characteristics could be added, but these are enough for a solid basis. They're in no particular order.

Intelligent. Educated. Experienced. Honest. Has integrity. Patriotic. Compassionate. Dedicated. Tough. Fair. Realistic.

There. These would suffice for a fine POTUS. Entertaining is nowhere - nor should it be. I won't bother going into how many of these qualities Bush has (none) vs how many Kerry has (all). Ok, so I lied....

contra Bush: always has a smirk

In case the reader didn't already know, I'm surely one of Bush's biggest critics. I'm solidly of the opinion that he has done literally nothing right since stealing the election. Which makes me hate this comment. If, after all the crap that Bush has put us through, the worst thing you can say about him is that you hate his smirk, then you're just fucking stupid. Cmon guys.

just plain contra: don't really like either of these guys because they're politicians

Jesusfuckingchrist. Response1 (shallow): I'm with him. But moreover, I hate how only race car drivers drive race cars, and how only programmers program. Jackass. Response2 (more diagnostic): Presumably he hates the personality type POLITICIAN (cheating, money-grubbing, etc). I do too. There's a reason they exist though. BECAUSE AN IDIOT ELECTORATE VOTES FOR THEM. And the reason they vote for them is because they have idiotic criteria, or no criteria at all. If you want better candidates, start fucking voting for them.

I used to grudglingly respect Rove-type republican operatives. Although they are evil racist, sexist, corporate crony people, they at least know how to play the game that's called WIN. Now that I think about it a bit more, that respect isn't deserved. It's like shooting fish in a barrel, mobilizing our electorate is. Just say your opponent has a nigger baby, and you're in. Just say the other side is going to ban the bible, and you're in. To respect Rove-types on the grounds mentioned would require that Rove-types win in the presence of an intelligent electorate. This is nothing more than beating 3 year olds at chess. Sheesh. With voters like these, who needs Al Quaeda?

I agree - mockery IS effective...

Looks like both Josh Marshall and Atrios (doesn't seem have permalinks - sorry) have media mockery on the mind. I don't know, of course, but one wonders whether this might be a blog trend....

Two faced Bush - no three, no four - aw crap.....

LOL - Check out Kos' rundown on Edwards'calling the Bush administration on the "Who's on first" routine they're doing on Iraq.

Early in the administration, they got us to eat shit, and like it. Then they would move the goal posts - but at least that was only one lie at a time. Now, in the ultimate act of smokescreening, they have four different high-level people tell America four different things.

Talk about covering your ass. No matter what the criticism is now, they can point to a high-level official, and claim they've addressed the matter. The only question in my mind is: how much of the electorate will fall for it?

Kos is right about one thing (well more than one, but I especially like this one) though - the Kerry campaign rapid response team has gotten very sharp over the last week or so. Given the way inertia works, I'd imagine that we'll be seeing the fruits of this effort in the next week or so. The media will probably be coming back about a week after that.

Wow. Just in time for the election. Good job kids.

Republican response....

LOL - all of it.

In response to the question about whether or not, in response to polls, a 2nd Bush administration would resemble Bush's 1st, the Republican ticked off everything Bush "did" during his first administration. So I guess the answer is "yes" the 2nd will look just like the 1st.

That should be enough for 3/4 of the country. I'll give Bush 25% of the country as blind fervent fools. But it's not, of course, which is why I always save part of my criticism for the damnable electorate.

And then there was the part about tracking terrorists to "where they breed". Hm. My next door neighbors don't breed, they have children. My horses and dogs don't have children, they breed.

Question: Even though dehumanizing the enemy is a standard tactic in war, is it really in our interest this time? (Given that inhibiting the creation of new terrorists is one of our most important priorities.)

Kerry's wonderful speech this morning....

"George Bush, just because you can't do something, doesn't mean it can't be done!"

Line of the month.

I saw the speech on MSNBC. In addition to its general excellence, and his smooth ad-libbing in response to the audience member's interruption, what struck me the most was how low MSNBC had the microphones turned down on the audience.

I've heard about this issue before, but I never noticed it myself so strikingly first hand. Such a set up is a part of what lets idiot talking heads talk about how Kerry has no passion, and no ability to inspire an audience. In this case Kerry was both passionate and inspirational.

Indeed, it was precisely because of Kerry's passion and inspiration that I was so easily able to tell that MSNBC had the mikes turned down. It could be hard to tell from simple hand-clapping, but it's easy when you repeatedly hear muted cheering - literally muted. It also cinches things when Joe Biden walks up a bit behind Kerry, clapping, and his solitary clapping is far louder than the entire audience's.

I can't wait to listen to the talking head-bots talk about Kerry's "failed attempt" to inspire others.

Update: After the speech, Biden accidentally-on-purpose congratulated Kerry with "You hit it. You hit it.". He's right.

Thursday, September 23, 2004

I'm not cool or anything, but this has been popping up everywhere. Best current conjecture is that it's a nonverbal zing - two-faced Bush. I second that emotion. It might, however, have been a bit more evocative if the face were turned, showing more of the good side than the bad - but showing enough bad that you'd have to be an idiot to not see it. Get it? And to finish off the symbolism, I suppose the good side ought to be made transluscent - indicating the pure superficiality of Bush's good side. Posted by Hello

Fox outdoes CNN on voter suppression...

Of course, no one can top the GOP efforts, most spectacularly exhibited by sending out of uniform big white sgt-kickass state patrol cops into old black folks' homes in Florida - but they can try.

Apparently FOX is telling Arizona college kids - Democrats of course - that their registering to vote is a felony.

"The young feminists have done a wonderful job of publicizing the right of students to register and vote. They've held a press conference and reached out to the community, Democratic lawmakers and other student groups. Even the young Republicans--whose registration efforts down the mall from the young feminists were ignored by Fox--have supported them."

Wow. Even America's idiot college kids - and Republican at that - have more decency than Fox News.

I'll kill the next faggot.... hahah - just kidding....

You gotta love Jimmy Swaggart.....

You gotta love the media even more - dutifully doing nothing but repeating such asinine apologies.

In case anyone is confused: when people make racist, sexist, or homophobic remarks, get caught, then claim that they were only kidding, THEY'RE LYING. Everytime. Without exception.

And BTW - "homophobia" is an unfortunate misnomer the bulk of the time. Racists don't have negrophobia, nor sexists gynophobia. Gay-haters don't say and do what they say and do out of fear, they act out of dislike, anger, and hatred.

This is one small way in which the PC crowd has shot itself in its own foot. They refuse to characterize people as mean or hateful, or bad or evil - choosing instead to describe them as uniformed or fearful, in need of education or sensitivity training.

There is a difference between remarks made out of fear/ignorance, and remarks made out of hatred/evil. And while in some cases it may be hard to decide which category a remark might fall into, most times it's pretty clear. In Swaggart's case (the most recent, that is) it's perfectly clear.

Let us recall what he said:

"And I'm going to be blunt and plain: If one ever looks at me like that, I'm going to kill him and tell God he died"

Joke? The only joke is Swaggart himself. He's a joke of a human being. Of Dice-man quality.

CNN actively suppressing the black vote!

I can't fucking believe it.

Good ol' Kyra Phillips just talking-headed her way through a story about the "shallowness of black interest" in the coming election. Then there was the bit about how Kerry's problem is that he doesn't "swagger" enough for black people.

Thank God they at least had the decency to put on some wonderful black female representative who specifically said that the contest is not between personalities (real or imagined), but rather between positions on issues.

Damn divide-n-conquer-exploit-racial-stereotypes jackasses...

Who cares about Cat Stevens?

Maybe I'm off, but it seems like there's about a jillion times more buzz about Cat Stevens' appearance on terrorism watch lists than there was about Ted Kennedy's being on such a list. Am I the only one who sees one of these incidents being much more important than the other?

Tuesday, September 21, 2004

Teflon Tom.....

Delay, does it again.....


Why do white people make it sooooo hard to like them?

lol - and I'm 1/2 white. It was a great day when my own aunt called me "colored"...

Anyhoo, enough of memory lane.

Along one dimension, there's essentially two kinds of white people - those who know racism is still alive and very well, and those who don't believe it's a major factor in damn near anything, and black folks are just sensitive, grudge-filled, whiny, or something else.

Unfortunately, what are commonly known as the "good whites" form the second group. The ones actively perpetrating racist acts are the first.

(Fine, fine, there are a small - by comparison with the first two groups - number of white folks who fit neither category - but that group is waaaaaaaay small, even though any white person asked will claim to be a member of that third category.)

For the "good whites", Salon has an excellent article here. The first kind of white folks doesn't need to read it - they already know about it.

Turn off your firewall long enough to click through a commericial, and read your way into (partial) understanding...

Damn CNN talking-head-bots.....

I'm just chillin, waiting for my groceries to be delivered, in case anyone was wondering where this veritable volcano of posting is coming from...

Kyra Phillips was talking to someone about Bush's UN speech. I don't have the quotes, but her remarks went something like this:

Do americans want to hear about AIDS and the Sudan? They want to hear about domestic matters, jobs healthcare....

I'lll be damned - when Kerry wants to talk about those domestic things, Kyra n CNN only wanna talk about Iraq and terra'.

But when the issue is millions of black africans dying of AIDS and genocide, then all of a sudden "we" wanna talk about domestic issues.


And then Miles O'Brien talked about the Iraq hostage takers' demands for women prisoners, saying (not quite a quote, but close enough):

We have no women in Iraqi jails except for two Saddam loyalists...

LOL - Hello? Is anybody out there? Officer, I never killed anybody..... except for those two hookers....


Never forget though - the biggest problem isn't them. They wouldn't exist if there weren't a large market of sheeple eating it up. No, the fundamental problem is with the idiocy level of the American public.

Bush gives up on American way in response to terrorists!

Found this on Yahoo! AP news.

The Pentagon is blocking overseas Americans from voting, supposedly because they're scared of overseas ISP hacking.

"That the Pentagon ... has chosen to surrender to unspecified 'hackers' without firing a single shot in defense of American democracy is suspect," Diana Kerry said in a statement.

Pentagon spokeswoman Lt. Col. Ellen Krenke confirmed that some ISPs which have been used to launch attacks are barred access to military .mil and .gov sites. But she said the blocks were not related to the election nor designed to silence Democrat voting abroad — as some of them suspect.

"It would stop the Republicans, too, right? It's both sides. We're not just letting a certain party through," Krenke said.

Yes, it would stop Republicans from voting as well as Democrats. WHAT THE FUCK? That makes it better?!?

But more importantly, Jim Crow stopped black Republicans from voting just as much as they stopped Black Democrats. Oh yah, I forgot there's a LOT more black Democrats... In fact, the volume level of Republican outcry on this issue would be a good measure of the overseas Dem/Repub split, I'm thinking....

Hello? Operator? Yes, could you connect me with America please? I can't seem to find it...

Lauer's an idiot

Interviewing Holbrooke (thank God for him) on the Today show, Matt Lauer ran down a slightly distorted version of Kerry's four objectives, commenting that they aren't any different from what Bush "has called for".

Dammit you fucking idiot - Bush "calls for" lots of things. He hasn't achieved a single one of them. He hasn't even worked hard to achieve a single one.

Oops - my bad - tax cuts for the rich in the middle of a war is the singular counterexample to my two claims above. Great.

So which is it Matt? Are you an idiot or a liar?

ah..... Good Ol' Condie....

With Matt Lauer on the Today show she reports:

(1) There's no evidence that Iraq is falling into a civil war

(2) Iraq has a good government in Allwai

There were a few others, but I can't remember. What a liar.

If I were a bigtime popular blogger, I'd ask someone to find a transcript for me...... (boohoo! lol)

Monday, September 20, 2004

Clarity in the NYT op-eds...

Read Krugman's article, then read Brooks'.

Of course they differ in all the standard Dem vs Repub ways. And of course Krugman is right (thank God he's back from vacation!). But there's a clear way they differ, which isn't often explicity remarked on, and is typical of Dem/Repub.

It has to do with one's answer to the following question: In how many ways can America lose a war?

If your answer is "exactly one", then you're almost certainly a Repub. If you go on to say that that one way is by America turning tail like a sissy, then it's cinched. That, of course, is Brooks' view.

Krugman and the rest of us can acknowledge that in some cases, turning tail like a sissy is one way a war can be lost, but we think there are others as well. We think that Vietnam was a clear example of this. We also think that, unfortunately Iraq is as well. Krugman's point is that the war is already lost - the goals that we hoped to achieve by war - at least the stated goals - are now unattainable. Now that the war has been lost, there's essentially nothing to do but figure out how the hell to go home.

Brooks doesn't see this - and more importantly, he can't even countenance this. For him, the only wars we can lose are the ones we say we lose. If we don't say it, it ain't so. See the Repub-ness in this?

If people like Brooks were in charge, Iraq would never have been an issue - we'd still be in Vietnam.

About time a bigtimer said this.....

Josh Marshall is right - this is a good WaPo editorial.

Dionne falls short on one thing though - he gets the question wrong. The question he poses for himself is "But why are we still talking about Vietnam?". He gives the obvious answers to this, and they're fine ((1) because if it was good enough for the Swift Boat Liars, it's good enough for CBS, and (2) Bush hasn't answered the questions).

But the more important question is: Why should we still be talking about Vietnam? That question has essentially one answer: because it helps tell us what kind of people our candidates are. It's biblical in fact: you shall know them by their fruits.

By only asking the descriptive question, which is weaker than the normative, Dionne is implicitly admitting that there is no reason for the normative question - essentially caving in to Repub talking-point pressure. This is mistaken in the extreme - the normative question is far more important than the descriptive. It would have been nice for Dionne to explicitly acknowledge this.

Dear God: Are people really worth it?

sigh. Another decapitation video.

America needs to do 2 things:

(1) Kill every terrorist we can lay our bloodthirsty hands on, and
(2) Do our damndest to minimize the number of new terrorists that get created.

Bush has not only attempted neither, his actions have actively worked against both. Fucker.

And yet 1/2 of the damn country will still vote for him... It's hard to say who's worse - Bush or 1/2 our country. I tend towards the latter; you don't blame snakes for biting, but you do blame people for putting snakes in places where they can hurt others.

Thursday, September 09, 2004

Where's the gong?

Someone oughta just put Miles outta his misery - he just told a female correspondent that she would look good in a burlap sack. What a jackass.

"The most trusted name in news" my ass...

Miles O'Brien is a complete idiot!

He's on CNN "interviewing" Annie Lennox.

(1) He makes an asinine comment about how old Annie is getting, and how inspirational it is that she still sings at her age. She's looking like she wants to smack him.

(2) Trying to show off his backgrounding, he tells her that "touring has never been [her] thing". This is simply false, and she flatly told him that "it was for years". Miles then "corrects" himself, tying it into the previous you're-so-old comment.


Are there any actual journalists left?

Reminds me of Lou Dobbs the other night, saying how sick he was of 35-years-ago allegations coming out, and how he's not going to report on them anymore. Great - the Swiftboat Demonstrable Liars get 2+ weeks of coverage, and the truth about Bush being AWOL gets 1 day.

And more than that, since when do journalists get to decide what to cover and what not to - especially based upon whether or not their sick of it? News is news. At least Fox says "We report, you decide". Dobbs won't even report. Asshole. Now THAT'S what I call a "media filter"

On the topic of media filters, does it seem to anyone that there's been about a gazillion times more hurricane reporting over the last week or so than in the entire history of television? Somehow it strikes me as oddly coincident with Bush's failed convention, proof of Bush's AWOL-ness, and a general wave against Bush. Yes, I am suggesting that CNN is deliberately downplaying how bad things are looking for Bush. And lacking anything particularly bad about Kerry, they're just ignoring the whole thing, hoping it will go away (Republican shills that they are).

They did not just do that!

LOL - Watching MSNBC talk about the new Bush-cheated-to-get-in-cheated-while-there-and-cheated-to-get-out story. The Bush defender (owerweight WASPy guy, missed his name) actually blamed Clinton! Over and over! I'll get a link as soon as I can, or at least some quotes.

From the you-never-know-when-God-is-watching file...

What a jackass - serves him right.

Presumably only a Republican would shoot little puppies....

UPDATE: Damn - I can't verify the last conjecture. I checked the Flordia campaign contributions site, and the (human) shootee's name didn't come up. Don't know how else to determine his party affiliation. Of course, it doesn't really matter all that much - such behavior is disgusting regardless...

re: Those damn trial lawyers, and malpractice insurance...

It seems likely that the Bush administration's next attempt at smoke & mirrors will be to start hammering on malpractice tort reform. In a preemptive strike, let me provide a link to a detailed survey of the truth of the matter. Basically, the problem is emphatically NOT "frivolous lawsuits", but rather the fact that the medical profession contains no functioning mechanism to weed out bad doctors. Tangentially, insurance companies are both dumb (bad investment strategies) and evil (gouging). But the lack of weed-out capability is the biggest problem, as this forces insurance companies to treat the medical profession as *unpredictable* - the worst thing in the world to an insurer. The problem is very similar in structure to those within the police community and the K-12 education community.

But without further ado, the report, "Medical Misdiagnosis: Challenging The Malpractice Claims...":

Public Citizen's report

The report also contains a large number of excellent "talking points", fit for use against Republicans and other mean-spirited idiots who want to remove the public's right to seek redress for harm.

Another "The Daily Show"?

Back in 2001, The Onion put out a beautiful piece entitled "Bush: Our Long National Nightmare Of Peace And Prosperity Is Finally Over". You can imagine what it was about.

Now there's a new version of it, with damn near every fifth word hyperlinked to facts. What a prophecy - what a miserable failure. Sheesh.

Will the American people ever care about what's true and what's false? What's good for the country and what's bad? What's right and what's wrong?

Tuesday, September 07, 2004

And the beat goes on......

From Atrios:



"It's absolutely essential that eight weeks from today, on Nov. 2, we make the right choice, because if we make the wrong choice then the danger is that we'll get hit again and we'll be hit in a way that will be devastating from the standpoint of the United States."

Of course Cheney is a slimy bastard for saying such things, and this is far from the first time he's done so. I'll leave it to all the others to bitch about that.

Although it's not good "date behavior", much of the time I'm going to focus on the other essential part of this behavior: the American people. The simple fact of the matter is that Cheney and his goons wouldn't be able to get away with this kind of crap if the American people were doing their job a bit better (or had done their job 3 1/2 years ago). No politician could ever get away with saying this, but for the fact that the American people have largely themselves to blame for the various pickles we're in. Much like Congress irresponsibly recused itself from its Constitutionally mandated role in voting for the Iraq war resolution, the American people failed to fulfill their role 3 1/2 years ago, and may well repeat their idiocy this November.

Not that the American public hasn't gotten help in achieving its current level of stupidity. I've been of the opinion that since, say, the Civil Rights Act, the Republican Party has actively pursued the goal of stupidify-ing America. They know perfectly well that they would never be able to wield power in an enlightened, educated and intelligent America. Education is Republicans' biggest enemy - as is illustrated, for example, by their love of religious extremism.

Kerry not a war hero? Saddam = Terrorism? Extra-national outsourcing good for Americans? Trial lawyers the cause of absurdly high medical care costs? Democrat = traitor? None of these lines could ever be put forth on the public stage if there weren't an audience for it. Not only does America need better leaders, America needs better Americans - and education must be the #1 priority on this front.

What is a Punditician?

These days the line between politicians, pundits and journalists is somewhat blurry. To a very large (and unfortunate) degree, the details and complexities of policy decisions are left behind, and decisions are made on bases other than detailed and rigorous policy analysis.

This space will be used to comment on such goings on, from both our elected officials, the media, and from the stand-out members of the public.

I welcome comments from the reader - largely because that will constitute strong evidence that someone out there is actually reading this blog....

Have Fun!


EDIT: It now occurs to me that I didn't actually answer the title question of this post. Oh well - not every swing is gonna be a homerun....