Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Is Press Consolidation REALLY All That Bad?

At the Eschatonic Crack Den, today, the commentor named "pluege" posted:
US corporate media is the biggest threat to the United States.... If the democratic congress does nothing else, they need to break-up big media to lessen US corporate media's influence and to open the airwaves for competing information, i.e., the truth..

That's true; but the reason for this being true is not the obvious one...

I watched that Frontline special last night, which highlighted the true and greatest danger posed by the mainstream press is that it will decline more and more into youtube/myspace irrelevance; and its complete and utter fealty to the stock market in the meantime.

And the notion of proprietary, almost feudal entitlement that is manifested among and by the stock-brokers, managers, and investment gurus, around the stocks in which the market deals. They do not see themselves as instruments or conduits through which business is done; far from it. Instead they regard themselves as the "Owners" of the companies and corporations whose stocks they trade. This is a MOST unhealthy attitude, it seems to me.

The stock market, through 'analysts', is telling the nation's great papers to leave the big national news to the NY Times, USA TODAY, and WSJ, and concentrate on 'local' or even hyper-localism, and ignore the responsibility of the institution of the press to provide context for the events which they report. This will mean that the picture of the world available to most folks will become all the more tihtly controlled, and narrowly circumscribed.

Watching, I wanted to break some faces, watching that piece, all the smug self-satisfaction oozing outta those smooth, greasy faces, botoxed, groomed and polished, with their practiced, condescending smiles and their empty, corpoRat eyes...

And with their monomaniacal focus on 'the bottom line'.

The Bottom Line: that's the danger, and when we hit it, it'll squash us all fucking flat...

This is because, as the FL piece repeated endlessly, the news stories picked up and distributed so pervasively and profusely by the web mainly arise from reporting done by newspapers with a national/international constituency, and a couple of international news services. It does not take a genius to realize that CorpoRats have decided that the profligacy of news is not in the best interests of profitable corpoRat governance, and so they have devised a scheme whereby, under the strictest accountability scheme of all--cost accountancy--they can root out and silence all those voices that have so hectored against their excesses for the last century or so.

Did YOU realize the LA Times made 20% return on investment last year, and was S*T*I*L*L not deemed profitable enough?

The danger represented by corpoRat/market hegemony to every and all aspects of the life of the people, the nation, and finally the whole fucking WORLD has seldom stood out in more stark relief than in the NewsWars, part III.

What Is Just Incredible, and Shameful Too, Is That The Rightwing Fucktards Want To Prevent Inoculation of Young Women

1 in 4 U.S. Women Carries Cervical Cancer Virus
CDC numbers reinforce need for early vaccination against HPV, experts say
By E.J. Mundell, HealthDay Reporter

TUESDAY, Feb. 27 (HealthDay News) -- The first survey of a broad age range of U.S. women finds more than 25 percent are infected with the human papillomavirus (HPV), thought to be the cause of most cases of cervical cancer.
Experts at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, which conducted the study, said the numbers support the vaccination of young girls and college-age women with the newly approved HPV vaccine, Gardasil.
The CDC currently recommends that the vaccine be routinely given to girls 11 and 12 years of age to help prevent infection with the sexually transmitted virus. The National Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices also recommends Gardasil for use in girls beginning at age 9 -- at the provider's discretion -- and in young women up to the age of 26.
The new statistics on prevalence won't change those recommendations, the study's authors said.
"It's important for people to know that this is a highly prevalent infection, that sexually active women are likely to acquire this infection, and that it is important to have regular cervical cancer screenings at this point as currently recommended. There's also [CDC] recommendations for using the HPV vaccine to prevent certain types of HPV," said study lead author Dr. Eileen Dunne, a medical epidemiologist with the CDC.
Her team's survey of more than 2,000 American women aged 14 to 59 found 26.8 percent of them testing positive for the presence of any strain of HPV in the vaginal tract -- equivalent to almost 25 million women.
HPV prevalence rose during adolescence and peaked among college-age women (20 to 24 years of age), with almost half (44.8 percent) of women in this age group testing positive for the virus.
Overall, the rate of infection for females aged 14 to 24 was 33.8 percent, or about 7.5 million young American women. That rate is substantially higher than previous estimates of about 4.6 million HPV infections in this same age group, the researchers noted.
Rates dropped off gradually as women got older, the study found.
The findings are published in the Feb. 28 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.
Because the body's immune system usually clears HPV from the body within six months, the study results do not reflect a woman's lifetime risk of ever acquiring the virus, the researchers stressed.
"People acquire these infections and then clear them," explained the study's senior author, Dr. Lauri Markowitz, another CDC medical epidemiologist who is director of the agency's HPV Vaccine Working Group.
In other words, a woman might pick up one strain of HPV through sexual contact in her teen years, then eliminate it, only to catch another strain later in life.



Halospam just sucks soooooooooo bad...

I'd happily pay a modest premium--say $5/mo--and I'm pretty sure other regulars would too, just to be rid of the constant aggravation provided by the turgid servers, crappy connections, and overrburdened operations inflicted by the "free" ride at hell-o-spawn...

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Keith Olbermann Augurs A Whole New Asshole For Condi's Shit To Slide Out

Keith Olbermann kicks her slatternly, satchel-ass:

"Invoking the German dictator who subjugated Europe; who tried to exterminate the Jews; who sought to overtake the world is not just in the poorest of taste, but in its hyperbole, it insults not merely the victims of the Third Reich, but those in this country who fought it and defeated it. Saddam Hussein was not Adolf Hitler. And George W. Bush is not Franklin D. Roosevelt - nor Dwight D. Eisenhower. He isn't even George H.W. Bush, who fought in that war."

There's a YouTube at the site. Go listen!!!

Friday, February 23, 2007

Bring Back Collective Bargaining!!! Support the Employee Free Choice Act

As members of Congress return home for the Presidents Day recess, working families are launching a Week of Action to push for passage of the Employee Free Choice Act.
At news conferences, worker roundtables, rallies and other gatherings across the country, workers and union and community leaders will connect with more than 130 members of Congress—thanking those who support the Employee Free Choice Act and demanding better from those who don’t.
In nearly 100 cities, workers will let their lawmakers know it’s time to end the unfair process that denies workers their freedom to join unions and bargain for better wages, benefits and working conditions.
In one of the first actions, more than 175 union members, state legislators and members of the West Virginia Council of Churches, the American Friends Service Committee and West Virginians for Affordable Health Care rallied in the rotunda of the West Virginia State Capitol on Thursday. They gathered to voice support for a resolution adopted by the state House of Delegates calling on Congress to pass the Employee Free Choice Act.
West Virginia AFL-CIO President Ken Perdue told the crowd the Employee Free Choice Act is about giving workers the opportunity to succeed:
It is an important time in the history of the labor movement. Once we pass the Employee Free Choice Act, millions more working men and women will be able to form unions free from the employer harassment or intimidation they currently face.
The Employee Free Choice Act will give millions of working people an opportunity to have a better life, and that is why at every level of this labor movement we must wage a relentless fight until it becomes law.
Click here to find an Employee Free Choice Act event near you.
Last week, AFL-CIO President John Sweeney called on union members and allies to educate lawmakers and the public about the role the Employee Free Choice Act would play in reviving the nation’s middle class:
It’s our job in the coming months to connect the dots for our elected officials and the American public. We must explain how the Employee Free Choice Act means helping workers bargain for a better future for their families…how stronger families and stronger unions mean shared prosperity and how shared prosperity means a stronger America.
(If the Employee Free Choice Act had been in effect, it would have allowed workers like Nikkia Parish, Bill Lawhorn and many others to freely choose whether they wanted to join a union. Read and watch videos to find out what happened to them instead.)
The House Education and Labor Committee voted Feb. 14 to send the Employee Free Choice Act to the full House for a vote in the coming months. The committee vote was 26-19 in favor of advancing the legislation (H.R. 800), which was introduced Feb. 5 and has the bipartisan support of 233 co-sponsors.
The legislation would give workers greater freedom to make their own decisions about joining a union to bargain for a better life by:
  • Establishing stronger penalties for violations of employee rights when workers seek to form a union and during first-contract negotiations,
  • Providing mediation and arbitration for first-contract disputes, and
  • Allowing employees to form unions by signing cards authorizing union representation.

Who Invited Fox into the Democratic Henhouse?

I do not know who are the 'responsible' parties in this "plan" (I suspect the Carville/Schrumm/Brazille axis of idiocy), but it utterly defies credulity that Fox News convinced the Democratic Party to let Fox host a nationally-televised Democratic presidential primary debate this summer in Nevada! This MUST qualify as one of the DUMBEST FUCKING MOVES in history.

And Fox isn't even a legitimate news channel! It's a goddam right-wing mouthpiece like Rush Limbaugh—dedicated to smearing Democrats. (Recently, Fox anchors, reporters, and pundits unanimously trumpeted the FALSE STORY Sen. Barack Obama attended a terrorist school, and the network is committed to undoing Obama altogether!). There is no organization functioning in the public sphere--"legitimate" or not--that is more antithetical to the candidates and platforms of the Democratic Party than FUX Noise.

Since the announcement this week, there's a growing backlash of people demanding that Democrats drop Fox. Can you help out by signing this petition to the Democratic Party of Nevada? It's really easy—just click this link.

Just DO IT!

Thursday, February 22, 2007

The Candidates I Shall NOT Support

I shall support no candidate for national office whose platform does NOT include:
1) universal, single-payer health care
2) repeal of the Bankruptcy Act of 2005
3) immediate withdrawal from the Iraq ICORP
4) paper ballots and hand-counts for all federal elections
5) a "moon-shot" approach to developing renewable, sustainable energy sources
6) removing the cap on SSI-taxable income
7) the immediate restoration of habeas corpus and the repeal of the PATRIOT Act
Those are my absolute minima. Absent any of those, I may in a pinch vote for a Dumbocrap candidate, but I shall not actively campaign or contribute to any campaign in which ALL those issues do not figure prominently.

Prob'ly that's just me...

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

New York Times: Busheviks Making Martial Law Easier

The editors of the New York Times have discovered an interloper in the budget woodpile (via, and they're SHOCKED AND OUTRAGED:
A disturbing recent phenomenon in Washington is that laws that strike to the heart of American democracy have been passed in the dead of night. So it was with a provision quietly tucked into the enormous defense budget bill at the Bush administration's behest that makes it easier for a president to override local control of law enforcement and declare martial law.

The provision, signed into law in October, weakens two obscure but important bulwarks of liberty. One is the doctrine that bars military forces, including a federalized National Guard, from engaging in law enforcement. Called posse comitatus, it was enshrined in law after the Civil War to preserve the line between civil government and the military. The other is the Insurrection Act of 1807, which provides the major exemptions to posse comitatus. It essentially limits a president's use of the military in law enforcement to putting down lawlessness, insurrection and rebellion, where a state is violating federal law or depriving people of constitutional rights.

The newly enacted provisions upset this careful balance. They shift the focus from making sure that federal laws are enforced to restoring public order. Beyond cases of actual insurrection, the president may now use military troops as a domestic police force in response to a natural disaster, a disease outbreak, terrorist attack or to any "other condition."

Changes of this magnitude should be made only after a thorough public airing. But these new presidential powers were slipped into the law without hearings or public debate. The president made no mention of the changes when he signed the measure, and neither the White House nor Congress consulted in advance with the nation's governors.

There is a bipartisan bill, introduced by Senators Patrick Leahy, Democrat of Vermont, and Christopher Bond, Republican of Missouri, and backed unanimously by the nation's governors, that would repeal the stealthy revisions. Congress should pass it. If changes of this kind are proposed in the future, they must get a full and open debate.

This is not the first time such a tactic has been adopted. Somebody in Arlen Specter's office inserted the proviso making it easy to fire and replace US Attorneys in a bill passed and signed last year. They rely on the very mass and impenetrability of such documents to perpetrate their mischief. Revealing this kind of blatant chicanery is the sort of thing for which the First Amendment privileges the press and grants it special freedom. If the Leahy/Bond bill makes it through the Congress, the margin and the compostion of the sides will be instructive.

Riverbend: The Worst-Case Scenario Is Happening Now

The case of the Iraqi woman raped in Bagdhad last week in her home by Iraqi regime 'security forces' is causing much more upset in Iraq than in the US. Riverbend, the young Iraqi woman blogging--Bagdhad Burning--intermittently from the 'Dad, has two posts up about it, her first such since December. Here's her conclusion:
I look at this woman and I can’t feel anything but rage. What did we gain? I know that looking at her, foreigners will never be able to relate. They’ll feel pity and maybe some anger, but she’s one of us. She’s not a girl in jeans and a t-shirt so there will only be a vague sort of sympathy. Poor third-world countries- that is what their womenfolk tolerate. Just know that we never had to tolerate this before. There was a time when Iraqis were safe in the streets. That time is long gone. We consoled ourselves after the war with the fact that we at least had a modicum of safety in our homes. Homes are sacred, aren’t they? That is gone too.

She’s just one of tens, possibly hundreds, of Iraqi women who are violated in their own homes and in Iraqi prisons. She looks like cousins I have. She looks like friends. She looks like a neighbor I sometimes used to pause to gossip with in the street. Every Iraqi who looks at her will see a cousin, a friend, a sister, a mother, an aunt…

Humanitarian organizations are warning that three Iraqi women are to be executed next month. The women are Wassan Talib, Zainab Fadhil and Liqa Omar Muhammad. They are being accused of 'terrorism', i.e. having ties to the Iraqi resistance. It could mean they are relatives of people suspected of being in the resistance. Or it could mean they were simply in the wrong place at the wrong time. One of them gave birth in the prison. I wonder what kind of torture they've endured. Let no one say Iraqi women didn't get at least SOME equality under the American occupation- we are now equally as likely to get executed.

And yet, as the situation continues to deteriorate both for Iraqis inside and outside of Iraq, and for Americans inside Iraq, Americans in America are still debating on the state of the war and occupation- are they winning or losing? Is it better or worse.

Let me clear it up for any moron with lingering doubts: It’s worse. It’s over. You lost. You lost the day your tanks rolled into Baghdad to the cheers of your imported, American-trained monkeys. You lost every single family whose home your soldiers violated. You lost every sane, red-blooded Iraqi when the Abu Ghraib pictures came out and verified your atrocities behind prison walls as well as the ones we see in our streets. You lost when you brought murderers, looters, gangsters and militia heads to power and hailed them as Iraq’s first democratic government. You lost when a gruesome execution was dubbed your biggest accomplishment. You lost the respect and reputation you once had. You lost more than 3000 troops. That is what you lost America. I hope the oil, at least, made it worthwhile.

Sunday, February 18, 2007

"The Next 25 Years: The New Supreme Court and The Press"

Democracy Now speaks with famed First Amendment lawyer Martin Garbus about his new book, "The Next 25 Years: The New Supreme Court and What It Means for Americans." Garbus says, “When it comes to questions of journalism, questions of the First Amendment, questions of privilege and questions of investigative reporting, this Supreme Court is going to be very anti-media.” [includes rush transcript]
I think the Supreme Court is not going to be adverse to the government. I think that when it comes to questions of journalism and questions of the First Amendment and question of privilege and questions of investigative reporting, this Supreme Court is going to be very anti-the media. I think Roberts and Alito, who with Scalia and Thomas and Kennedy, those five people who now dominate the court, are going to be people who are going to be very, very hostile to the media. So with respect to the next twenty-five years, they're going to be hostile to a lot of other things. There's the famous integration case, Brown v. Board of Education, and fundamentally that's going to be overruled this term.
The president AGAINST the people:
I think ultimately what the court is also going to do is they're going to extend the whole question of the unitary presidency. They're going to give Bush, or whatever president follows, a great deal of power. Roberts and Alito, again, and Scalia and Thomas believe that the president has sole control over foreign affairs, that the president, as commander-in-chief, gets all kind of powers, and with respect to the past decisions that we've had, with Guantanamo, etc., you had O'Connor there, who was basically a ballast, and I think you're going to find the court making very, very different decisions now with respect to Iraq-related issues.
State Religion Vs. The People?
I think that's one of the major areas. Bush’s faith-based initiative has resulted in more money going into the churches this year than have gone on in the entire last century. It's an enormous money flow. I have a case now where we're challenging it in New York with respect to the Salvation Army. What a faith-based initiative means is that the federal government can pour money into religious organizations, if the religious organizations are doing the kinds of work that a state organization could do. For example, if the Salvation Army is taking care of children or homeless, then they also are allowed proselytize using federal funds.
Here's where the Busheviks' assault on the First Amendment is going...


(H/t to Barry from Alaska, over at the CrackHouse, for the linkee)

Thursday, February 15, 2007

File Under Heading: Ain't THIS Some Shit?!?

Records needed by workers whose health was adversely effected (unlike certain fun-loving, pizza-munching , iconoclastic, crime-fighting chresymids) by exposure to nuclear materials from working at a nuclear lab in Ohio appear to have been buried in deep holes along with toxic, hyper-radio active wastes in caverns excavated under Los Alamos, NM.
But hey, who knew?

How Many GOPukes Who Voted FOR This Execrescence When It Passed Last Fall Are Still In DC

Patriot Act's Provision on U.S. Attorneys to Come Under Scrutiny in Senate

"Congressional Democrats and some Republicans are trying to change part of the USA Patriot Act that allows the Bush administration to fire and replace federal prosecutors indefinitely without Senate confirmation. Freshly briefed by the Justice Department on the forced resignations of some of the seven U.S. attorneys since the act took effect, Senate Democrats planned to bring a bill to the floor Thursday that would impose a 120-day deadline on the amount of time a replacement could serve without Senate confirmation." (Associated Press)

You know why I'm asking of course?
Because if this provision is contained in a bill, it is going to have to be signed by the Chimp.

Some 'drone' from Arlen Spectre's staff allegedly inserted the offending language in the bill after debate had closed, but before the vote.

It may be enough already that the bothersome prosecutors have been dispatched, returned to private practice, or their investigations--which brought down Bob Ney and Duke Cunningham, and may well have had other high-profile GOPhascist targets--otherwise neutralized.

But if it's not enough, if the Bushit-loyalist GOPukes and the Busheviks are adamant about retaining the provisions, then the Chimp will certainly not sign, and might well veto, such legislation.

What then? It requires 67 votes in the Senate AND 288 votes in the House to overturn a veto.

Guess Who Hired The Person Tommy Franks (?!) Called "The Dumbest Motherfucker On The Planet" ???

That'd be Douggie Feith, that paragon of blind, stupid loyalty, craven lies, and whom Gen. Tommy Franks described so aptly as the "dumbest motherfucker on the planet." He was hired by a Defense Department graduate school for military officers and diplomats, with a four-year contract that was to pay him half a million dollars, Pentagon records show, last year.

Feith resigned from the Bushevik regime in 2005 after being found too great an embarrassment even for them to endure. His duties as a “distinguished professor” at the National Defense University, a 30-year-old institution on the Washington waterfront financed by the Pentagon, included team-teaching a course and producing a report on ways to “organize the United States better for the long war on terrorism,” according to the documents.

He never took up the position, however, resigning within a month of his appo9intment becomeing public.

The university has become a popular place with former Pentagon officials who served under former Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld. Gen. Richard B. Myers, who is retired from the Air Force and was chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff under Mr. Rumsfeld, holds an endowed chair at the university. Former Deputy Defense Secretary Paul D. Wolfowitz and Mr. Feith have deposited copies of their official papers there, and Mr. Rumsfeld is considering doing the same, according to two Pentagon aides.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

The Dog That Didn't Bark, The Question Unasked.

Over at the Eschaton crack den, in response to the Commander-in-Codpiece's utterly non-revealing presser today, the following question was posed as one not asked:

"Mr. President, do we 'know' that the Iranians are providing arms to the Iraqis with the same certainty that we 'knew' that Saddam had WMD's?"

There is no press corpse in the so-called 'free world's that is more docile, more compliant, more feckless, more gutless, or more useless than that which covers the ShiteHouse...

PS: Speaking of dogs, wtf were they thinking last night at Westminster, giving best-in-show to that anemic Springer? Clearly, the choice should have been the PBGV, the Akita, or the Bouvier. What, do they let just ANYBODY judge these things???

Cry 'Havoc' And Let Loose The Dogs Of War

There is a huge potential that the Shii'a and the Sunni factions of Islam in the Persian Gulf will descend into wide-spread, internecine, sectarian strife.

I think there's a pretty good chance that this was the Neo-Con/Zionist/PNAC plan all along.
It is by no means impossible or unthinkable that the fascist Neo-Con/Zionist/PNAC cabal advocated and advanced the current USer course in the region because they understood that USer presence and military activity would, indeed, eventually lead to mortal, regional strife, in the course of which the Muslim factions would reduce one another to chaotic impotence, in the aftermath of which the West could move in and recolonize the resources...

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

This Is 'Can't Miss' Stuff, Once You Dig Through All The Self-Serving Posturing

NEWS WARS: (270 minutes) In a four-and-a-half-hour special, News War, FRONTLINE examines the political, cultural, legal, and economic forces challenging the news media today and how the press has reacted in turn. Through interviews with key figures in the print and electronic media over the past four decades -- and with unequaled, behind-the-scenes access to some of today's most important news organizations, FRONTLINE traces the recent history of American journalism, from the Nixon administration's attacks on the media to the post-Watergate popularity of the press, to the new challenges presented by the war on terror and other global forces now changing -- and challenging -- the role of the press in our society.


Feb. 13, 2007, 9pm (check local listings)

In part one of News War, FRONTLINE examines the political and legal forces challenging the mainstream news media today and. how the press has reacted in turn. Correspondent Lowell Bergman talks to the major players in the debates over the role of journalism in 2007, examining the relationship between the Bush administration and the press; the controversies surrounding the use of anonymous sources in reporting from Watergate to the present; and the unintended consequences of the Valerie Plame investigation -- a confusing and at times ugly affair that ultimately damaged both reporters' reputations and the legal protections they thought they enjoyed under the First Amendment.


Feb. 20, 2007, 9 pm (check local listings)

Part two continues with the legal jeopardy faced by a number of reporters across the country, and the additional complications generated by the war on terror. Correspondent Lowell Bergman interviews reporters facing jail for refusing to reveal their sources in the context of leak investigations and asks questions on tough issues that now confront the editors of the nation's leading newspapers, including: how much can the press reveal about secret government programs in the war on terror without jeopardizing national security? FRONTLINE looks past the heated, partisan rhetoric to determine how much of this battle is politics and whether such reporting actually harms national security.


Feb. 27, 2007, 9 pm (check local listings)

(90 min.) The third part of News War puts viewers on the front lines of an epic battle over the future of news. America's major network news divisions and daily newspapers are under siege, facing mounting pressure for profits from corporate owners, and growing challenges from cable television and the Internet, which are remaking the economics of the business and transforming the very definition of news. FRONTLINE talks to network executives, journalists, Wall Street analysts, bloggers, and key players at Google and Yahoo! who are all battling for survival and market dominance in a rapidly changing world of news. FRONTLINE also goes inside the embattled newsroom of The Los Angeles Times, one of the last remaining papers in the country still covering major national stories. Under severe pressure from Wall Street to cut costs and to compete for "eyeballs" in a new media world, editors at the paper are urgently trying to figure out what this means for their future news coverage and their public service mission.


March 27, 2007 (check local listings)

The fourth hour of News War looks at media around the globe to reveal the international forces that influence journalism and politics in the United States. The lead story focuses on the new Arab media and its role in both mitigating and exacerbating the clash between the West and Islam. With a focus on Al Jazeera and how it has changed the face of a parochial and tightly controlled Arab media, this hour explores Al Jazeera's growing influence around the world -- from Muslim communities in Europe to the pending launch of a new English-language service that will be broadcast in the United States.

Monday, February 12, 2007

MSApocrypha: What! No E-mail?

An unemployed man goes to apply for a job with Microsoft as a janitor. The manager there arranges for him to take an aptitude test (Section: Floors, sweeping and cleaning).

After the test, the manager says, "You will be employed at minimum wage. Let me have your e-mail address, so that I can send you a form to complete and tell you where to report for work on your first day." Taken aback, the man protests that he has neither a computer nor an e-mail address. To this the MS manager replies, "Well, then, that means that you virtually don't exist and can therefore hardly expect to be employed."

Stunned, the man leaves. Not knowing where to turn and having only $10 in his wallet, he decides to buy a 25 lb. flat of tomatoes at the supermarket. Within less than two hours, he sells all the tomatoes individually at 100% profit.

Repeating the process several times more that day, he ends up with almost $100 before going to sleep that night.

And thus it dawns on him that he could quite easily make a living selling tomatoes. Getting up early every day and going to bed late, he multiplies his profits quickly. After a short time he acquires a cart to transport several dozen boxes of tomatoes, only to have to trade it in again so that he can buy a pick-up truck to support his expanding business.

By the end of the second year, he is the owner of a fleet of pick-up trucks and manages a staff of a hundred former unemployed people, all selling tomatoes. Planning for the future of his wife and children, he decides to buy some life insurance. Consulting with an insurance adviser, he picks an insurance plan. At the end of the telephone conversation, the adviser asks him for his e-mail address in order to send the final documents electronically.

When the man replies that he has no e-mail, the adviser is stunned, "What, you don't have e-mail? How on earth have you managed to amass such wealth without the Internet, e-mail and e-commerce? Just imagine where you would be now, if you had been connected to the internet from the very start!"

After a moment of thought, the tomato millionaire replied, "Why, of course! I would be a floor cleaner at Microsoft!"

Moral of this story:
1. The Internet, e-mail and e-commerce do not need to rule your life.
2. If you don't have e-mail, but work hard, you can still become a millionaire.
3. Seeing that you got this story via e-mail, you're probably closer to becoming a janitor than you are to becoming a millionaire.
4. If you do have a computer and e-mail, you have already been taken to the cleaners by Microsoft.

Renewables MAY Help Turn the Tide on Global Warming

By Kelpie Wilson,
Posted on February 12, 2007, Printed on February 12, 2007

The report comes at an opportune time: the release of the United Nation's Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change's (IPCC) latest climate change report is expected to finally clear up any lingering uncertainty about the role fossil fuel burning and other human activities have in changing the Earth's climate. As the deniers and obstructionists lose all credibility, the debate now turns to solutions.

The ASES report, titled "Tackling Climate Change in the US -- Potential Carbon Emissions Reductions From Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy by 2030," makes this extraordinary claim: "Energy efficiency and renewable energy technologies have the potential to provide most, if not all, of the US carbon emissions reductions that will be needed to help limit the atmospheric concentration of carbon dioxide to 450 to 500 ppm."

The ASES report was presented at a press briefing in the Capitol with the support of Senator Jeff Bingaman, Chair of the Senate Energy and Resources Committee, Representative Henry Waxman, Representative Chris Shays, Sierra Club president Carl Pope, and NASA's chief climate change scientist, Dr. James Hansen.
  1. Download a copy of the American Solar Energy Society report.
  2. Follow the link in the headline of this post to read the whole thing...
  3. For a related story, see "10 Ways To Prepare For A Post-Oil Society"

Lissen, bee-yotch! You can have this microphone back when they pry it outta my cold, dead fingers...

Sunday, February 11, 2007

Larry Flynt's magazines don't hold a candle to the Lord's original work!

Contrary to popular liberal belief, promiscuity and deviance are not modern cultural creations but have their roots much deeper in human history.
Take this quiz to see how: Here's the first five questions...

1. If you retain the services of a prostitute, but are careless and
impregnate her, what should you do for her in return?

A. Nothing. Prostitution is a sin that makes the woman equally
culpable for the pregnancy.
B. Pay child support until the woman marries or the child reaches the
age of maturity, whichever comes earlier.
C. Kill the Godless whore! (particularly if you find out she’s a relative).
D. None of the above.

2. Were sex objects used in Biblical times?

A. They may have been, but that’s certainly not something we’d learn
from the Bible.
B. Yes. Women masturbated themselves with dildos made of gold and
C. No. People in Biblical times were aware only of sex with animate
objects, such as humans and animals.
D. None of the above.

3. Do Middle Eastern men have large “external appendages” and
great sexual prowess?

A.Whether they do or not, this is certainly not a subject the Bible
would dare address.
B. No. Differential size and performance is a media myth.
C. Yes. In fact, Egyptians have penises the size of a donkey’s and
ejaculations the volume of a horse’s.
D. Yes. Jews are really small.

4. How can sin (or anything else that irks God) affect your sex life?

A. Trick question. God doesn’t manipulate one’s sex life as a
punishment for sin.
B. Depending upon his anger, God may make you impotent.
C. While you won’t be impotent, you may lose the ability to produce
D. God may simply have your neighbor rape your wife.

5. Are there times when prostitution is acceptable?

A. Yes. When the money raised is used to support needy Christians.
B. No. The Bible never refers to “acceptable” prostitution.
C. Yes. If the prostitute is providing “services” to a widower.
D. None of the above.

Thursday, February 08, 2007

Lieberman calls for new "Anti-Terrorism Tax" to finance GWOT

The short, Reuters story is lacking in details:

Washington - An outspoken supporter of the Iraq war on Tuesday called for a new tax to pay for its astronomical cost as Congress opened a debate on President George W. Bush's $2.9 trillion budget plan for next year.

Sen. Joseph Lieberman of Connecticut proposed a "war on terrorism tax" at a Senate hearing during which he said the Pentagon's $622 billion defense budget proposal for fiscal 2008 threatened to crowd out funds for domestic programs.

The lawmaker, a former Democrat turned independent, favors a U.S. troop buildup in Iraq....
But I'd bet real money they do NOT include cutting back any of the tax-cuts the Regime has bestowed upon it's loyal corpoRat sponsors...

To NO ONE'S Surprise, Libby's Lies Lead Straight To The Top

TruthOut's Jason Leopold & Marc Ash sez:

(F)ormer White House staffer I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby testified before a grand jury in 2004 that Vice President Dick Cheney instructed him to divulge portions of a then-classified report to New York Times reporter Judith Miller. Libby testified that Cheney said authorization to leak a section of the report had come directly from President George W. Bush, the court transcripts state.
Later, Libby says that when the president tells you to talk about a document, it is automatically declassified.

Flop Sweat: Chimpy's Self-fulfilling Prophesies

"The president has included an extraordinary fatal flaw in his plan for additional US troops in Iraq, a fact that may not make much sense to his advisers and allies, but is psychologically understandable in terms of a mechanism that governs his inner reality. As with many other aspects of the president's sometimes odd behavior, the root of this new self-subverting plan lies not in political expediency, in the advice he's received, or in his intellectual abilities as such, but in a psychological twist that begins with his long and well-documented history of failure (and his sense of his own failure) within his family of origin," according to John P. Briggs, M.D., and J.P. Briggs II, Ph.D. From Truth-Out...

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Is it problematic, Chris Hedges, when you see church and state joining hands like this?

"Well, of course...
Because it essentially serves the same purpose as the fusion of party and state, which is what totalitarian movements do. The state implements the policies of the party; they become essentially one entity. And that is by its very definition what a totalitarian state consists of. I think we have to remember that this new political religion is a radical mutation from traditional fundamentalism, or traditional evangelism.
Evangelical leaders in the past, like Bill Graham, always warned their followers that—and he of course got burned and used by Richard Nixon—to keep their distance from power. And fundamentalists have traditionally called upon their followers to remove themselves from the contaminants of secular society, and to shun political activity.
This is something we have not seen in the past. And yes, the nation has had certainly a Christian component to it, but there was always that understanding that religious belief was a private, internal affair, and not something that would be propounded by the state.
And of course the architects of the Constitution were terrified of going back into the kind of tyranny and repression that was practiced by the puritan states, and more importantly by the religious states in Europe, because they understood the danger of that sectarian violence. And I think we should also be clear that the early Christians in this country, most of them were Deists, which these radical Christians would consider as heretics, the notion that you could find God in nature, as Jefferson and others believed.

Tom Tomorrow, Beyond the Salon Firewall

I hope this qualifies as "Fair Use"...

Spine Check for John Edwards...Calling John Edwards. Please Pick Up the Spine Check !!!

Edwards' newly hired bloggers Amanda Marcotte and Melissa McEwan have pissed off the Catholic Church's rabid dog in US politics, Bill Dohohue of the Catholic League.

Donohue cited posts that the women made on blogs in the past several months in which they criticized the pope and the church for its opposition to homosexuality, abortion and contraception, sometimes using profanity.

"The Catholic church is not about to let something like compassion for girls get in the way of using the state as an instrument to force women to bear more tithing Catholics," Marcotte wrote on the blog Pandagon on Dec. 26, in an excerpt cited by Donohue.

Among the McEwan posts that Donohue listed was one she posted on Feb. 21, 2006, on her site, Shakespeare's Sister. She questioned what religious conservatives don't understand about "keeping your noses out of our britches, our beds and our families?"

Edwards put both bloggers on his payroll last week as part of his outreach to liberal voters and activists on the Internet. Their decision to work for Edwards is part of a broader move among prominent bloggers to jobs with political campaigns and progressive organizations.

The Catholic League counts its membership at nearly 350,000.

Does Wild Bill Donohue, fearful faggot-basher par excellence, speak for the whole of the 350,000-person membership of the Catholic League?
Probably, since pretty nearly all the Catholics in the League are fundie freaks...
Does Edwards have the spine to stand up to this kind of public mugging?
Personally, I doubt it...

But of course this wasn't the only rap against Marcotte, either. She invited the attention, scorn and derision of the National League for the Protection of Privileged White Boys (NLPPWB), when she weighed in on the Duke-Lacrosse-Sexual-Assault situation, too.

This incident could potentially provide Edwards the cover he needs to cave to the Catholics...

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

FWIW: Today Is The 7th Anniversary Of My Mother's Death

Mostly, it was cigarettes that killed her, even though she quit 10 years before her passing. She was about a month and a half short of her 79th birthday. My father outlived her by 375 days, and his death was caused by Congestive, Obstructive Pulmonary Disease, too. He was 2 months past his 82nd birthday. The photo was taken at Dad's retirement, in '86; she's holding a cigarette...
I smoked tobacco for 35 years, myself, before quitting in 1994. So some part of that fate awaits me as well.

Fucking cigarettes!!!

Bush Budget Cuts Eviscerate Middle-Class Programs

--$77 billion in funding cuts for Medicare and Medicaid over the next five years, and $280 billion over the next 10.”
--$223 million in funding cuts (4 percent decrease from this year’s levels) to the Children’s Health Insurance Program.
--$4.9 billion, or 8 percent, cut in education, training, employment and social services” grants.
--$100 million cut for Head Start, which provides child development services to economically disadvantaged children and families.
--$2.4 billion cut in community and regional development grants — which often provide funding for low- and middle-income communities — to $16.5 billion from $18.9 billion.
--$400 million — 18 percent — cut in the Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program, “which provides $2.2 billion to help people pay heating bills this year.”
-- $172 million — nearly 25 percent — cut in funding for housing for low-income seniors.

If there were an independent media in the USofA, these figures would be on every front-page of every legitimate newspaper in the fucking country...They would lead the evening news for the next innumerable weeks, they would occupy every fucking minute of punditical excess, they would be blazoned on blank walls, they would appear on lottery tickets, milk cartons, billboards...

More and more, the expedient of the Dime-Sized Hole becomes attractive and forgiveable...

h/t: swampy mcfeverish Homepage 02.06.07 - 11:54 am over at the Crack Den...he didn't supply and i don't have a site/link, but I'll put it up when I do...

Monday, February 05, 2007

A Word To The SCUM*: Don't Get Fooled Again

The most important lesson about the Iraq War for reporters was perhaps the simplest one: Don't assume the White House is telling the truth. It's a lesson that many reporters seem to be forgetting now that U.S. officials are escalating their claims about Iran's role in Iraq.

But of course, the SCUM* and the lap-dog toadies, lick-spittles, satraps, boot-lickers, and sundry other sycophants to power cannot be bothered to re-examine and re-appraise their contributions to the IC (Iraq Clusterfuck), and persist in stenographic services for the Busheviks and their corpoRat masters. Click in the headline of this post to follow the link to FAIR's account of the current rush to war husbanded along predicatbly by the same folks who were stampeded to war the last time, and led the country along with 'em...

*SCUM: SoCalledUnbiased Media

Dem Cajuns, Dey Be's Some Canny Folk, Cher

Donkey Raffle
(tanx to mah frain, Mike K)

A Cajun named Jean Paul moved to Texas and bought a donkey from an old farmer for $100.00.
The farmer agreed to deliver the donkey the next day.
The next day the farmer drove up and said, "Sorry, but I got some bad news. The donkey died."
"Well then, just give me my money back."
"Cain't do that. I went and spent it already."
"OK then, just unload the donkey."
"What ya gonna do wid'em."
"I'm gonna raffle him off."
"Ya cain't raffle off a dead donkey!"
"Sure I can. Watch me. I just won't tell anyone he's dead."
A month later the farmer met up with the Cajun and asked, "What happened with the dead donkey?"
"I raffled him off. I sold 500 tickets at $2.00 apiece and made a profit of $898.00."
"Didn't no one complain?"
"Just the guy who won. So I gave him his $2.00 back."

Doing Good Deeds

Allegedly, Bristol - Myers is donating a dollar to AIDS research every time someone goes to their website and moves the match to the candle and lights it.
I did it.

You can only do it once.
Light To Unite
It's simple...and the statistics are staggering.

Are these legitemate concerns???

Over at the Crack Den (aka, Eschaton) this morning was a re-iteration of an on-going debate:

Is it legitimate to speculate about whether the (Bushevik) Regime will try to hold on to power beyond its "legitimate" departure date; and is it legitimate to speculate on how 1)the Regime, 2)the democrats outside the Regime and 3)the media would behave if a "terraist attack" occurred on U.S. soil before that "legitimate" departure date?
masculine_monica_nyc | 02.05.07 - 12:28 pm
It's my belief that, in the event that the next (inevitable) bloody outrage occurs in the current Bushevik time-frame, the media will AUTOMATICALLY line up unanimously to uphold the Regime, and any efforts to politically or legislatively delegitemize the Regime will evaporate into the fog of jingoism and reflexive 'nationalism', accompanied by vicious castigations of the "Left" generally, and the "libruls in congress" being named as the villains and traitors for interfering in the Busheviks' 'plans' to prevent terrorism through domestic spying, and other internally directed intelligence ops.


Saturday, February 03, 2007

Molly Ivins in 2005

For Molly Ivins' 2005 Speech, go here: it's the second video on the list.
it runs to just over an hour, and her remarks on the political strategy of vociferously pursuing 'gay marriage' versus accepting 'domestic partnerships' with all the trappings of 'marriage' but without the clerical crap, is in the Q&A section, near the end...

Friday, February 02, 2007

In & Out Burger Pulls OUT From KSFO; Spocko Rings Up Another One

Spocko's efforts to hold KSFO hate-heads Melanie "Feculent Twat" Morgan, the ever-odious Lee Rodgers, and chickenshit chickenhawk Brian Sussman accountable to their advertizers for the content of their speech--and to remind advertizers of their complicity in the hate-speech they sponsor--has again paid a dividend: In'n'Out Burgers has pulled their ads from KSFO. Click the link in the title box, above, and read all about this latest coup.

Anti-Choicers In S. Dakota Won't Take Yes For An Answer

From the Kansas City Star's on-line service:

South Dakota abortion ban is bouncing back

Just months after voters rejected it, lawmakers are pushing a slightly revised version.

The Associated Press

PIERRE, S.D. | Legislators introduced a sweeping abortion bill Wednesday that supporters hope will lead to a legal challenge of Roe v. Wade.

The measure would allow exceptions for rape and incest with DNA evidence, making it slightly less rigid than a bill passed last year that contained an exception only to save the life of a woman. A petition campaign forced that bill onto the ballot, and voters rejected it in November by a margin of 56 percent to 44 percent.

Opponents of the legislation said the issue was settled in the November election and lawmakers should not have revived it.

This year’s bill would allow rape victims to get abortions if they report the rapes to police within 50 days. Doctors would have to confirm the report with police and would have to take blood from aborted fetuses and give that information to police for DNA testing.

In the case of incest, a doctor would have to get the woman’s consent to report the crime along with the identity of the alleged perpetrator before an abortion could be performed. Blood samples from fetuses would have to be provided to police in incest cases too.

Abortions could be done only until the 17th week of pregnancy in cases of incest and rape. The bill carries a tougher maximum penalty for illegal abortions than last year’s bill — 10 years in prison instead of five.

It would allow abortions to save women’s lives and in cases in which their health would be seriously jeopardized by a continued pregnancy. However, a doctor could perform an abortion only if a doctor from another practice concurs that a woman’s health is in jeopardy.

Sanctimonious Lesbian Hypocrite Mary Cheney Gets Well-Deserved Come-Uppance

My friend Hecate BRINGS it to the Veep's repellantly, maudlinly preggers daughter (click in the Title box for the link):

(Your FATHER, the Chimp, and the rest) think that THEY, not you, have the right to make your reproductive choices, and to make medical end-of-life decisions for Terry Schiavo, and to prevent stem cell research, and to define marriage as "between a man and a woman" -- all in the name of placating some whackjob, woman-hating, gay-fearing fundies in order to harvest their votes and their donations. In fact, that's your daddy's base, although, as you well know, he holds them in as much contempt as he seems to hold 99% of the electorate.

And, gee, Mary, you filthy-souled sell-out to your gender, guess what else? You support that! You worked on your daddy's campaign. You didn't give a speech and say that Focus on the Family is a bunch of dirty-minded busybodies who have no business sticking their noses into America's vagina. You didn't issue a statement saying that Terry Schiavo's family ought to be left the fuck alone. No, Mary, you, you ugly-spirited sow, you are what we call a collaborator.
Dang! I love it when Witches get their dander up!

Finally: Chalmers Johnson's "National Intelligence Estimate" On Bush's USofA

Harper's is notorious for printing remarkably provocative essays by renowned and talented writers, and then withholding those from the web for about a month. So Chalmers Johnson's frighteningly acute and penetrating analysis ("military Keynsianism") of the state of the Union as seen by an ambivalent outsider only appeared very recently. Information Clearinghouse dot info has it. This is the introductory section:

01/17/07 "Harpers Magazine" -- -- The United States remains, for the moment, the most powerful nation in history, but it faces a violent contradiction between its long republican tradition and its more recent imperial ambitions.

The fate of previous democratic empires suggests that such a conflict is unsustainable and will be resolved in one of two ways. Rome attempted to keep its empire and lost its democracy. Britain chose to remain democrat¬ic and in the process let go its empire. Intentionally or not, the people of the United States already are well embarked upon the course of non-democratic empire.

Several factors, however, indicate that this course will be a brief one, which most likely will end in economic and political collapse.

Military Keynesianism: The imperial project is expensive. The flow of the nation’s wealth – from taxpayers and (increasingly) foreign lenders through the government to military contractors and (decreasingly) back to the taxpayers – has created a form of “military Keynesianism,” in which the domestic economy re¬quires sustained military ambition in order to avoid recession or collapse.

The Unitary Presidency: Sustained military ambition is inherently anti-republican, in that it tends to concentrate power in the executive branch. In the United States, President George W. Bush subscribes to an esoteric interpretation of the Constitution called the theory of the unitary ex¬ecutive, which holds, in effect, that the president has the authority to ignore the separation of pow¬ers written into the Constitution, creating a feed¬back loop in which permanent war and the uni¬tary presidency are mutually reinforcing.

Failed Checks on Executive Ambition: The U.S. legislature and judiciary appear to be in¬capable of restraining the president and there¬fore restraining imperial ambition. Direct opposition from the people, in the form of democratic action or violent uprising, is unlikely because the television and print media have by and large found it unprofitable to inform the public about the actions of the country’s leaders. Nor is it likely that the military will attempt to take over the executive branch by way of a coup.

Bankruptcy and Collapse: Confronted by the limits of its own vast but nonetheless finite financial resources and lacking the political check on spending provided by a functioning democracy, the United States will within a very short time face financial or even political collapse at home and a significantly diminished ability to project force abroad.

Interested readers are encouraged to follow the link embedded in the title block of this posting. I frankly cannot understand how one would NOT...

Thursday, February 01, 2007

The Nation's John Nichols: Recuerdos of Molly Ivins

He writes, in part:

The warmest-hearted populist ever to pick up a pen with the purpose of calling the rabble to the battlements, Ivins understood that change came only when some citizen in some off-the-map town passed a petition, called a Congressman or cast an angry vote to throw the bums out. The nation's mostly widely syndicated progressive columnist, who died January 31 at age 62 after a long battle with what she referred to as a "scorching case of cancer," adored the activists she celebrated from the time in the late 1960s when she created her own "Movements for Social Change" beat at the old Minneapolis Tribune and started making heroes of "militant blacks, angry Indians, radical students, uppity women and a motley assortment of other misfits and troublemakers."

Follow the link in the title box of this post and read the rest. The Nation has announced it will be publishing more of them over the next daus and weeks.