Thursday, August 30, 2007

One Of My Favorite Epigraphs:

Capitalism is the astounding belief that the most wickedest of men will do the most wickedest of things for the greatest good of everyone. -- John Maynard Keynes
Addendum (5:30 pm): Surfing the Web today, I ran into the following story, by George Monbiot, on Alternet:
"For the first time the UK's consumer debt exceeds the total of its gross national product: a new report shows that we owe £1.35 trillion. Inspectors in the United States have discovered that 77,000 road bridges are in the same perilous state as the one which collapsed into the Mississippi. Two years after Hurricane Katrina struck, 120,000 people from New Orleans are still living in trailer homes and temporary lodgings. As runaway climate change approaches, governments refuse to take the necessary action. Booming inequality threatens to create the most divided societies the world has seen since before the first world war. Now a financial crisis caused by unregulated lending could tur(n) hundreds of thousands out of their homes and trigger a cascade of economic troubles.

These problems appear unrelated, but they all have something in common. They arise in large part from a meeting that took place 60 years ago in a Swiss spa resort. It laid the foundations for a philosophy of government that is responsible for many, perhaps most, of our contemporary crises."

The project of neo-liberalism for 60 years has been to overturn Keynsianism. Officially, at least, Nixon is rebutted: We are not Keynsians anymore. Interesting that Pilger pins the blame on Mad Mag Thatcher.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

"Bomb Bomb Bomb Bomb Bomb Iran"

Someone with less primitive sentiments than the Chimp might be able to resist the allure of that terribly euphony.


Chris Bowers Is Fuukin' AWESOME!

He's gotta be the hardest-working man in bloggery, the dot-connecting equivalent of James Brown, the hardest-workin' man in the Bizz. He does graf upon graf upon graf of amazingly thorough, inciteful (stet) political analysis on He makes an important tactical point today, down pretty far (#6), that though Congress's standing in polls is worse than the Busheviks collectively and individually, Democrats' are not so badly tarred.
"Congress" is an abstract concept that voters never seem to collectively punish. "Democrats" and "Republicans" are abstract concepts that voters seem to punish on a regular basis. Right now, Democrats hold gaping leads on Republicans nationwide, meaning that low congressional approval has not damaged Democratic electoral opportunities. This also means that any campaign urging Democrats to not support the same policies that Republicans support is doing Democrats a favor. Republicans are really unpopular, and Democrats who want to vote like Republicans are committing electoral suicide.

If Hillary Doesn't Get In This Time, There's Still Hope

Coming Soon: "Virtual" Democracy

It's ALMOST Real...
Naomi Klein, in The Nation (via Alternet), sez:
Political protesters are now being videotaped under the guise of ensuring their legal right to be seen and heard. What happens when surveillance is billed as the new participatory democracy?
Everybody knows 'what happens': We lose! Michel Foucault was the first to notice--at least he was the first to popularize the idea--that surveillance is the dominant motif of all social science: The positivist model of observation (surveillance) and prediction (control) lives and flourishes in, and ultimately underwrites, the National Security State.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

How To Pick Up A Cop In An Airport Restroom, The Larry Craig Way: Lesson 1

(H/t lambert@correntewire)
Craig had the highest possible rating from all the Jeebo-Fucktard/Xian-Fascist groups, including Dobson's Family research Council, the American Family Association, and Schlafly's Concerned Women for America.
THe GOPervert/GOPedophile file is growing by leaps and bounds, innit? These poor, repressed fellas.

Monday, August 27, 2007

The Presemint'sss Commencement Addressss To Gitmo Gradsss, Classss of '07

Chertoff's apparently the Odds-On Favorite To Replace Abu Gonzo

Chertoff holds dual citizenship.
His other passport is Israeli.
Is this an issue?
Should it be?
Would it be an issue if it were, say, Lebanese?

Please check the number and try again

Rick Perlstein at CFAF put this up today. It's outstanding, and devastating. The Busheviks deserve prison for what they've NOT done in NOLA.

Has "Begging the Question" Been Covered In Here Yet?

The misuse of this trope just annoys me almost beyond expression!

The phrase in formal rhetoric and logic, 'begging the question,' is, really, an anachronistic translation of the Latin phrase "petitio principii." This was/is a logical flaw in which a conclusion is assumed apriori to be proven true, in advance of argument.

The phrase "beg the question" is a really attractive way to frame an issue in a question that requires an answer. But that's not what the phrase means, at least not in the discourse in which it's meaning is grounded.

I hope you'll forgive me if I say, for me, it's like nails on slate; and the pedantry that ensued. Just change the word 'begs' to 'demands,' and I'll be a happy rhetor.

This'n's a breeder

Snark-meister Attaturk was, i think, the first to suggest she's Fred Thompson's next trophy wife. She's clearly a product of S.Carolina's renowned Xian Academy system of 'voluntary' school segregation.

NPR's Reporting Abu Gonzales Will Announce His Resignation Today

I do not know what this means, other than the obvious.

I think Bush will appoint Rick Santorum to fill the vacancy, mebbe in a recess appointment, though Santorum, with this Senate 'cred,' might get approved.

Man-on-Dog Rickie's got advantages: he's untouched by scandal, he's a a loyal Bushevik, and he's confirmable, because of his Senate years.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Mr/Ms Candidate: I Have One and Only One Question!

This should be, until it is satisfactorily answered, the first, last, and only question proffered by the SCUM to any and all candidates, but most especially the so-called "Democratic" ones:
What steps do you plan to take to restore the Rule of Law and Constitutional separations of powers which have been so rudely and wrongly abrogated by the current Regime? Be specific.
What laws will you seek to repeal?
Will you close the White House Office of Faith-based Initiatives?
What will you do about the nearly 500 signing statements the current Regime has attached to bills the Congress passed?
How will you restore the right of habeas corpus?
When will you stop domestic spying, and data-mining of citizens' private information?
What will you do to revivify the 1st, 3rd, 4th, 5th, 6th, 8th, and 9th Amendments, all of which have been made mockery--if not wholly eviscerated--by the fascist Busheviki?

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

The Drumbeat Of War : Is Rupert Murdoch the Reincarnation of William R. Hearst

Rupert Murdoch wants the USofA to go to war with Iran, the same way William R. Hearst, the 19th Century newspaper mogul, wanted war with Spain. Recall Hearst remonstrating Remington in Cuba, who complained that all was peaceful and wished to return, to stay in Cuba: You furnish the pictures; I shall furnish the war"? Hearst's motive, according to his biographer Swanberg, was mainly to sell newspapers. But Hearst was an avid Imperialist/Expansionist, too, a Manifest Destiny acolyte.
What's Murdoch's motive? More blood with which to sell his FOX manure? Or something larger?
Every reeking, feculent, shit-encrusted one of them.
(Courtesy of The Big Con.)

Nat Turner's Revolt

Yesterday was the anniversary of the day, in 1831, that a slave named Nat Turner, a 30-year-old man legally owned by a child, and six other slaves, began a violent insurrection in Southampton County, Virginia. They began by killing the child’s stepfather, Joseph Travis, and their family. Within the next 24 hours, Turner and, ultimately, about 40 followers killed the families who owned adjacent slaveholding properties, nearly 60 whites, while freeing and inciting other slaves to join them. Militia and federal troops were called, and the uprising was suppressed with 55 African Americans including Turner executed by hanging, and hundreds more killed by white mobs and vigilantes in revenge.
Read more about Nat Turner and his revolt here; read his 'confessions' here.

Do NPR's Newsreaders Have Vomitoria In The Studios?

That's what I asked the gal--a friend of mine--who runs the board at the local outlet during Morning Edition, upon hearing Renee Mundane reading a headline prospective of the lying, shitwhistle Chimperor's speech to the VFW today, in which he will say something like "The consequence of US involvement in Vietnam has been 30 years of peace in the region."
Having to repeat boilerplate like that, without comment, would make me puke all over the fucking console. I mean, how can anyone with a fucking chinchilla of "integritude" (to say nothing at all of actual integrity) bring themselves to read such feculent fucking twaddle and codswallop with a fucking straight face, without any comment or snark?
I'd have to resign, if I had to repeat such crap, aloud, and in public, without comment.
NPR is "trusted." That means some significant fraction of the Volk listen for honest reports. They're trusted because, presumably, they're news professionals. Thus when they simply repeat the lies, when the just 'catapult the propaganda,' they imbue them with respectability and simultaneously handicap their own credibility.
In the Corporate State, corporate media ARE the "State Media."

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Spam Scam

In e-mail, I just received the following alert:
Dear Customer,
Del Norte Credit Union temporarily suspended your account.
Reason: Billing failure.
We require you to complete an account update so we can unlock your account.
To start the update process click the link below :

The information provided will be treated in confidence and stored in our secure database.
If you fail to provide required information your account will be automatically deleted from DNCU database.
Copyright ¨Ï Del Norte Credit Union, All Rights Reserved

Except I do not have an account of any kind with Del Norte Credit Union.
So this is obviously a scam, to extract from the unwary personal information which can be turned against them, possibly by pillaging the accounts.
Be Wary!

You've heard of the Myth of Sisyphus?

It's just a case of "Rock and Roll."

Monday, August 20, 2007


Funny how this wasn't announced til AFTER the market closed today?
CapitalOne is closing it's wholesale mortgage bidness, completely, shuttering the fucker, and laying off 1,900 employees, by the end of the year.

'Ey, buddy? Wanna buy anapple?

Guns in Class?

Not in MY fucking classroom! NO fucking Chance! NO fucking way.

There's apparently a movement on some college campuses (Hitler U, i.e., George Mason, University of Utah and University of Colorado, among them), in the wake of the massacre at VA Tech last year, to allow students who pass a test to carry sidearms concealed on campus and to class.

I repeat: Not In MY fucking Classroom: NO chance, NO fucking way.

Sunday, August 19, 2007

Democracy Does NOT Mean "Freedom" or "Liberty"

That seems me the unmistakable implication of the following, if you pay attention to nuance:
The conscious and intelligent manipulation of the organized habits and opinions of the masses is an important element in democratic society. Those who manipulate this unseen mechanism constitute invisible government which is the true ruling power of our country.
The author of that sentiment was Edouard Bernays, Sigmund Freud's favorite nephew. The old man always stayed with Bernays when the former was in the USofA; it was Bernays' appropriations of the old man's ideas which formed the basis of the 'industry' of which Bernays is considered the "father": advertizing/public relations (there's no difference between them, except in the rhetoric of those who hope to elide the synonymy of their practices and and ends).

Bernays was saying, in effect, that the appearance of 'liberty' and/or 'freedom' in a 'democracy' is the product of the manipulation of the 'unseen mechanism' by the those in the 'invisible government' who are privy to the machinery. It is this which maintains power in the hands of the elites, all the while conveying the impression--abetted by the feverish, expensive, pervasive propagandistic labors of the advertizing/public-relations industry--that, as the myths proclaim, the People are in control of their own political destiny, when in fact nothing could be further from the truth.

Friday, August 17, 2007

What Rick Perlstein Says, Re: "The Creative Society"

In a new piece up at CFAF (link in headline, above), he starts out nicely, upbraiding NPR reporter Rene Montagne for her soft-ball, deferential treatment of the Consumer Product Safety's acting director (and former flack for the US Chamber of Commerce) Nancy Nord on Morning Edition on Thursday over the Govt's responsibility in latest recall of Chinese toys by Mattel, and ends with a reminder that we were started on this path by the shitsucking asshole, Raygun, and his drive to privatize (The Creative Society of the title) government services, and his penchant for blaming Government regulation for all social ills.
In all of this I am Rick's rapt admirer and fan. But our paths diverge later in the piece, when he writes:
National Public Radio, by the way, was taken in hook, line, and sinker by Nord's bamboozlement. They entitled their dispatch "Safety Agency: Importers Must Meet U.S. Standards." Even though Nord had never quite said that good flack: they never quite lie because it's simply not true.

I fiercely disagree!

NPR was NOT 'taken in.' They could NOT have possibly NOT known Nancy Nord's 'provenance'; they could not possibly NOT have known her history.

Ergo, they CHOSE their supine, feckless posture of complicity within the right-wing bidness alliance; they CHOSE not to question deeply; they CHOSE to accept the non-answers and evasions, misinformation and mis-statements which Nord so lavishly strewed, like ripe pig-shit, into their all-too-willing, all-too-open microphones.

Just as they virtuously repeat verbatim the codswallop spewed by Richard Murray, the owner of the Utah mine that has now claimed the lives of NINE people. Murray has been an 'outspoken' critic of mining safety regulation (which fact somehow never seems to be repeated in reports which feature him and his 'assurances' that the collapse was not triggered by managerially mandated, unsafe mining practices) and scofflaw who threatens mine inspectors with his close ties to Mitch McConnell (yeah, THAT Mitch McConnell), bought and cemented by his many, extravagant donations to the Senator's campaigns and PACs....

Institutionally NPR has become nothing more than another instrument of the State propaganda apparatus, to paraphrase Althusser. If I could separate my donation, and demand that it be spent ONLY on local operations, I would do so. I cannot--or perhaps MAY not--but I always inform them that I donate to them at all only to keep the local station solvent, and that I have nothing but contempt for them generally.

Why Dems Cave Like A Utah Coal Mine: There's The "Technical" Explanation; Then There's The Truth

Below are juxtaposed two blerbs touting pieces on Truthout.Org, which deal with the same phenomenon: The continuing saga of the repetitive, gutless, seemingly inexplicable sell-outs by Dems to the Pubes on matters on which the Dems, when they won the Congress, said they'd resist the Chimperor's continued betrayals of the nation's organizing principles.

First, the 'technical' explanation:
How the Fight for Vast New Spying Powers Was Won
Joby Warrick and Walter Pincus report in Sunday's (8/12/07) Washington Post about the jockeying between the Bush administration and Congress that led the White House to use the threat of a terrorist attack to resurrect Cold War-era wiretap powers over Democrat objections

But leave it to Helen Thomas to get to the truth behind the artifice:
Helen Thomas | Yet Again, the Democrats Roll Over
Longtime White House reporter Helen Thomas writes in her most recent syndicated Hearst Newspapers column that "President Bush has the Democrats' number on Capitol Hill. All he has to do is play the fear card and invoke the war on terror and they will cave."
Unfortunately, what is true of the SCUM (SoCalledUnbiasedMedia) is also likely true for the rest of the media-soaked country too. Even absent Rove, the GOPs won't play just the fear card; they'll deal the whole paralyzing deck. Whosoever it is the Pubes run as candidate, that person and the whole Party will run on a platform the central and all subsequent planks of which will prominently feature fear, terror, war, muslims, mexicans, god, gays, and guns.

And if that's what the campaign's about, the Dems are 'losers'; they simply cannot win, if the Pukes control the agenda. Because 'what bleeds--even if only in prospect--leads,' the Pukes talking points will always have top-of-the-page headlines.

So, because the Pukes DO own the Press and the presses; DO own the media and the channels over which they are transmitted; DO own--in point of fact--ALL the means of (information) production (cf., Neil Poster, e.g.), they DO control the agenda: in the Corporate State, corporate media are State Media.

So, I'm not sanguine about the prospects of 'turning the country around' and overturning the last 7 and eventually 8 years of authoritarian control accreting to the ShiteHouse like barnacles. The Pukes likely will 'get elected'--by which, of course, I mean they and their trained hunds in the Press will deal the every fucking card in the 'terror/fear' deck to create enough uncertainty and ambiguity in the electorate--agitate, and exaggerate every possible pseudo-threat--to enable the Pukes' now-long-perfected, practiced, election-theaving technologies to prevail unchallenged and, if previous patterns hold, even unacknowledged, but for the crinkling of tinfoil being wound into hats.
(Revised, 2:51 pm, mst)

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

The Primary Question

I have hinted around this matter in the past, posing questions about how to prevent the next President (Gottes' Willen!) from simply taking up the powers the Busheviks have stolen. There is, it now seems to me obvious, only one question that should be asked of any candidate for the office of the Presidency. It should be asked first, last and in-between, until every candidate has answered directly, unequivocally, and unambiguously.
It's a really simple question, not complicated, not nuanced:
"Madam/Sir, what will be your first act as President to restore the Constitutional balance of powers and the Rule of Law to the Executive branch? Please, be specific!"
With examples, such as:
  • What measures currently eroding the liberties of Americans would you undo?
  • What policies at present in place that subvert the Constitution would you revise or reverse?
  • Would you lead the way to repeal the PATRIOT Act?
  • How would you restore habeas corpus?
  • What would you do to restore 4th Amendment guarantees, and to ensure that they were not again trifled with by aspiring autocrats?
  • Would you close the Office of Faith Based Initiatives?
  • Would you order the Xian Embassy out of the Pentagon?
  • What do you plan to do about your predecessor's signing statements?
  • What do you plan to do about the emergency powers granted under NSPD 51 and HSPD 20?
I encourage anyone interested to add to the list, or start your own. I'm gonna send mine to every editorial desk in the state.

In my transmission, I am also inquiring whether it is their editorial policy to print propaganda of or from photo-ops when candidates refuse to answer reporters' questions.

And if it is, why?

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Richard Belzer's A Tin-Foiler On JFK!!!

"(I)t behooves me to settle one irrefutable reality about the "crime of the century": IT WAS PHYSICALLY IMPOSSIBLE FOR OSWALD TO HAVE SHOT PRESIDENT KENNEDY!!!
After President Kennedy's head was exploded, Lee Harvey Oswald was discovered on the second floor of the Book Depository building drinking a Coke. His presence was verified by his boss, Roy Truly, and motorcycle patrolman Marion Baker. According to the Warren Commission, the three men's encounter was reenacted in two "tests" by the commission: in the first, Baker (walking!) reached the second floor landing in 1 minute, 30 seconds. In the second test; in his words: "at kind of a trot"; he finished the course in 1 minute, 15 "time" Oswald's movements Special Agent John Howlett of the Secret Service (in another rigged "test") carried a rifle (there were three rifles found in the Depository on November 22: a German Mauser, a much joked about Italian Mannlicher-Carcano, and a British Enfield Rifle; but that's another story) from the "nest" and "placed" the Carcano on the floor near the site where it was actually found. The truth is the murderer hid the rifle, which would take longer than to "place it on the floor". The reality is (as Mr. Bugliosi knows full well if he "read" the Report as he claims) the Warren Commission reenactments of Baker's reaction times were done at a slower speed than his actual movements, according to Baker's own testimony he ran from his motorcycle and into the depository quickly but the reenactments had him purposely go slower to meet the needs of the Commission's desire to create the impression that there was time enough for the assassin to do his dirty deed. Let us now consider what Oswald was alleged to have accomplished, by some miracle, with his rickety ass misaligned bolt-action relic of a rifle: fire three bullets, with deadly accuraccy (of which one was "magic": a theory concocted by Arlen Specter, at the behest of the Commission, that manages to suspend the laws of Newtonian physics!) squeeze out of the sniper's nest, wipe off the gun, go to the opposite end of the sixth floor, zigzagging and dodging stacks of books, wedge the weapon between two of the stacks, run down four flights of stairs (with landings, actually making it eight flights, I visited the Book Depository) then, according to page 679 of Volume XXV1 of the Commission's Hearings and Exhibits...exhibit No. 3076 quoting Officer Baker's deposition: "on the second floor where the lunchroom is located, I saw a man standing in the lunchroom drinking a Coke"; Oswald appeared completely calm and not the least out of breath or nervous at his chance encounter with patrolman Baker and Roy Truly (who remember ran up just one flight of stairs) in reality surely getting them there in more like SIXTY TO SIXTY FIVE SECONDS ladies and gentlemen: Therefore to repeat: IT WAS PHYSICALLY IMPOSSIBLE FOR OSWALD TO HAVE SHOT PRESIDENT KENNEDY!!!"
Forget for a second that it's someone named "Richard Belzer" recounting the evidence; just read the text. I am resigned that I shall never see the truth of it, but the account Belzer provides is convincing, to say the least.

Monday, August 13, 2007

Racism: What Makes It "Real"?

Hey, Everyone! Let's Play "Spot The Looter"!
(Nb, Blackwater, Inc: "Looters" do not wear back-packs.)There remains considerable confusion as to what 'racism' is, whom it advantages, whom it penalizes, how it works and why it persists. Here's the "dictionary" (necessarily 'racist,' since racism is still the default condition of the culture; see Jamaica Kincaid, A Small Place) definition of it:
Racism is the belief that a particular race is superior or inferior to another, that a person’s social and moral traits are predetermined by his or her inborn biological characteristics. Racial separatism is the belief, most of the time based on racism, that different races should remain segregated and apart from one another.
Once and for all: Prejudice, bias, bigotry, and general douchebaggery are not race-specific; one may find prejudiced, biased, and bigoted douchebags, in both genders, of all ages and achievements, in any and every ethnic group in the world. Prejudice, bias, and bigoted douchbaggery, however, are NOT what constitutes 'racism,' though they are often concomitant instruments.

Important: 'Racism' [per se] is NOT an individual pathology--as the official definition implies it is, by using the term 'belief.' Racism is not a 'belief.' It is the system by which 'belief' is reified and enacted: an intricate network of deeply embedded, practical nodes of contact. It is social SYSTEM of institutionalized attitudes, assumptions, and practices designed to deny to--and at a minimum, to impede the expression of--the members of despised groups their rights to equal, just, and/or fair participation in and enjoyment of the fruits of the common labors of the society. The despised groups obviously differ according to the specific needs of the dominant, 'racialist' group in any given society; for example, Koreans in Japan. Racism is the name for the system that permits the douchebags of the dominant group their relatively unreproved exercises in humiliation and degradation. It's the official stamp of approval --the imprimatur-- on douchbaggery. (Look into the events of late in Jena, Louisiana, for a pretty clear, recent case-study.)

Racism operates through the individual's intention, but it is made possible--that is, the conditions of its possibility endure--and it retains its power because it is STILL widely held (if perhaps subliminally) as a social norm: Unacknowledged, at least tolerated, if not encouraged, by the quotidian representations of race as configured in the photographs juxtaposed above.

Racism in the US is a "white" phenomenon because the political power structure, the economic elite, the social hierarchy, and effectively all the other means of access to that participation and enjoyment are still owned, directed, managed,and controlled by "white" people. Whites are the only group in the US which occupies positions of sufficient power in sufficient numbers to make racism real.

That is (except for such as Ward Connerly, Clarence Thomas, and other black 'conservatives' who curry favor among the racist elite by blaming the victims), it is nearly impossible to be a Black 'racist' in America, the fact that it IS possible to be a black (or brown, or any other color) bigot notwithstanding. Racism does not 'work' against the dominant group, that group which, as a group, controls the access of other members of the society to the social goods which our common participation in culture creates. The Connerlys and the Thomases of the world tearing at the barriers that impede the recrudescence of the overt racism of the past are incomprehensible to me.

"Racism" self-evidently does NOT 'harm' everyone, either. It manifestly benefits members of the group which owns the power to practice it. If it WERE harmful to 'everyone,' the efficiencies of social architecture would eradicate it pretty soon. That it persists implicates its continuing usefulness in the contemporary codes for ordering and organizing the chaos around us.

P.S.: If there were no social utility in retaining the 'racial' identity of *whiteness*, as a condition of material consequence, there would be no utility in maintaining the distinction between "black" and "white" people at all, would there?

Guess Who Was "Right" Before He Was "Wrong?"

H/t to Rick Perlstein:

Friday, August 10, 2007

Pat Condell - - "On Matters of Morals and Miracles"

Just a chatty, cheery, devastating critique of the assertion that 'morality' requires a 'religious' foundation or motive.

Onion News - - "Liechtenstein Tests Teeny Tiny Nuke"

These folks get the SCUM (SCUM = So Called Unbiased Media) attitude exactly right: the weary, knowing, paternalistic, patronizing "knowi-ness" (to copy a page out of Colbert's book): pious platitudes delivered with affectless deliberation .

Thursday, August 09, 2007

A Tin-Foil Chapeau Item: The GOPubes Threw The '06 "Election"

The Dims 'won' the Congress in '06 ONLY because the Pubes din't haul out their whole arsenal of reliable, time-tested, heavy, vote-stealing artillery.

They--the GOPhux--didn't WANT to 'win' in Congress. They DID want to be able to shift blame onto the Democrats for the Busheviki excesses over the previous 6 years and inoculation against the the forthcoming two years.

So, the Pubes more or less threw the '06 'election' because they needed to be able to dump some share of the responsibility for the Bushevik "Blunders" (they're not, really; those 'blunders' are actually the Bushevik 'accomplishments; but that's for another time) on the Dims.

The Dim margin of 'victory' provided that, despite the appearance of majorities in both Houses, the Pubes retained effective control in both. It worked just about perfectly, seems to me.

Wonderful how the Dims stepped Right UP, innit?!

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Time For A New Meme--Via Tapped

It's time for prominent Democrats, the ones who have the power to get on the evening news, to talk in explicit terms about the consequences of the conservative antigovernment philosophy and what it says about the people who advocate it. Conservatives are the people who degrade government to the point that it cannot effectively maintain our roads and bridges. Conservatives are the people who turn over our defense budget to corrupt contractors who steal the money that ought to go to our troops. Conservatives are the people who won't let poor kids have health insurance.
"Conservatives" are the people who allowed New Orleans to drown and kept natives from returning.
"Conservatives" are the people who prevent veterans from receiving treatment, and reduce budgets for their care.
"Conservatives" are the people who scoff at the evidence of climactic climate change, and refuse to conserve or reduce their energy use.
"Conservatives" are the people who are the first and loudest to object to taxes, and the first to complain when services they use are reduced.
C'mon, Folks!!!

Give It Your Best Shot!

"Conservatives" are the people who_________________________________________

Prob'ly We Shouldn't Make Too Much Of The Fact

...that this Bob Murray guy, the CEO of the Utah mine that collapsed, causing a primary temblor of almost 4.0, and and probably seting off the series of subsequent tremors from subsequent, consequent cave-ins which are STILL interfering with rescue/recovery efforts, was on CNN in April openly mocking Al Gore and the environmental/climate crisis movement.
Or that, according to MSHA, the mine has a long record of serious safety violations:
"The Crandall Canyon mine has a record of serious safety violations. Government mine inspectors have issued 325 citations against the mine since January 2004, according to the federal Mine Safety and Health Administration’s (MSHA) web site. Of those, 116 were what MSHA considered “significant and substantial,” meaning they were likely to cause injury or death. Since the beginning of the year, inspectors have issued 32 citations, 14 of them considered significant...

And it would probably be unfair to mention the Murray's open contempt of and distaste for MSHA itself, too, wouldn't it:
..."Robert Murray is a major donor to the Republican Party, with his coal company’s political action committee handing over $200,000 to Republicans during the 2006 elections. He has often testified before Congress on behalf of the National Mining Association in order to press for tax cuts, environmental and safety deregulation, arguing that unreasonable costs were being imposed on operators and were a disincentive to the increase of coal production.

I mean, prob'ly there's no connection at all between those things and the the six trapped (and, I'd bet, deceased) miners.
Nope, nothing here folks. Move along.

Official Terrorists & Their Remedy

"The greatest evil is not done in those sordid dens of evil that Dickens loved to paint but is conceived and ordered (moved, seconded, carried, and minuted) in clear, carpeted, warmed, well-lighted offices, by quiet men with white collars and cut fingernails and smooth-shaven cheeks who do not need to raise their voices."
-- C.S. Lewis

A well-constituted court for the trial of impeachments is an object not more to be desired than difficult to be obtained in a government wholly elective. The subjects of its jurisdiction are those offenses which proceed from the misconduct of public men, or, in other words, from the abuse or violation of some public trust. They are of a nature which may with peculiar propriety be denominated POLITICAL, as they relate chiefly to injuries done immediately to the society itself. The prosecution of them, for this reason, will seldom fail to agitate the passions of the whole community, and to divide it into parties more or less friendly or inimical to the accused. In many cases it will connect itself with the pre-existing factions, and will enlist all their animosities, partialities, influence, and interest on one side or on the other; and in such cases there will always be the greatest danger that the decision will be regulated more by the comparative strength of parties, than by the real demonstrations of innocence or guilt.
-- "Publius," The Federalist, # 65

Monday, August 06, 2007

Albuquerque Got "Dicked" Today. Local NPR Applied The Lubricant Later

Cheney was in town today to stroke the waning willies of the Marine Corps League's 84th annual convention, and to catapult a ton more war propaganda onto the willing--nay, the enthusiastic, albeit deluded--heads of the erstwhile warriors and the breathless local media folks anxious for their taste of the 'inside' the "darth-side."

Darth , of course, said nothing that he had not already said elsewhere. He permitted no questions, much less answered any. What he said, however, was to effectively outline the GOP national propaganda strategy for the forthcoming '08 campaign. It was "Fear, fear, fear, and the prezdunce's perteckin you!" He literally invoked the Muslims under the bed fantasy: there are cells in the country; they're out there among you, the terrists, the killers, the enemies of Murka, and if we cant listen to you we can't listen to them and keep 'em from harming you. We just wanna perteck ya!

If you needed a news hook for the local angle, you had it right there, I thought.

The report was about 5 minutes. Faithful recording of Cheney spreading war-love occupied about 3.5 of them. Protestors were interviewed listlessly, for a while. The report closed with the reporter listening to a bunch of gyrenes, suckin down fags (butts?), and grumbling the anti-democratic canard that if it weren't for Cheney and them, those kids wouldn't have their precious rights...

When I called the local NPR outlet, which recorded every word, the news director said they just reporting news. I said they were stenographers. News would be if he flew in on a fucking broom; or passionately kissed his Marine escort, or mooned the demonstrators. I asked the news director if Cheney had submitted to questions. He temporized. I said, "Fine. If he won't aswer questions, why put his boilerplate on the air? How is that different from stenography? Audio mimeographing.?"

He thanked me for calling, before he hung up on me.
They know me over there.

If even the local NPR--presumably somewhat insulated from ideological attack by their association with the University--cannot act with integrity, there's little hope to ever hear critical analysis of the events of the day.

BlogSwarm: The Two MOST Disasterous Anniversaries?

Today, August 6, is of course the anniversary of the first Atomic bombing, on Hiroshima, August 6, 1945.

It is also the anniversary of the announcement to the assembled Busheviki in Crawford, Texas, in 2001, that according to intelligence sources reported in the Presidential Daily Briefing that day, "Bin Laden (Is) determined to strike in US." This clear warning the Busheviki met with hubristic arrogance, telling the intelligence briefers that they had "covered their asses;" then-National Security Advisor Condi Rice later dismissed it as of 'merely historical" significance (which remark ought forever to have poisoned her path to any further positions of leadership or authority, except in Disneyland.)

It would be difficult, and will take a very long time, to assess which event will ultimately have the greater, more toxic effect.

Under-Statementer/s Hall of Fame

The New York Times
Subject: Selective Prosecution
"One part of the Justice Department mess that requires more scrutiny is the growing evidence that the department may have singled out people for criminal prosecution to help Republicans win elections. The House Judiciary Committee has begun investigating several cases that raise serious questions. The panel should determine what role politics played in all of them." (Emphasis added.)
I repeat my previous inquiry:
The fucking story is not in the NINE fucking USAttys who were fired. The FUCKING STORY, you fucking morons, is about the other EIGHTY-fucking-FOUR US Attys who KEPT THEIR fucking JOBS, !

To what grievous fucking iniquities --to what lurid fucking violations of the very fucking nature of justice-- did those rat-fuckers who stayed on have to stoop to NOT have felt the bite of Rove's fucking knife in their fucking throats; to NOT have been fucking fired for insufficient fucking attention/enthusiasm for the rat-fucking agendas of local GOPube pols like our (NM's) goat-fucking Domenici and Wilson? Prob'ly Steve fucking Pierce, too; no fucking reason to think not.

Thing about show-trials in a 'civilized' country--with a citizenry awash in commodities, and dreadful of their loss--you don't need many of 'em to make your point: Resistance could cost you EVERYTHING!

Are You Feeling LUCKY, Punk?

Noticing the Obvious: The NYTimes & Infrastructure

Via TruthOut.Org:A NY Times Editorial connecting the Holes (they're WAY bigger'n "dots") in the fabric of culture.

The nation's physical foundations seem to be crumbling beneath us. Last week, a 40-year-old interstate highway bridge collapsed in Minneapolis, plunging rush-hour traffic into the Mississippi River 60 feet below. Two weeks earlier, an 83-year-old steam pipe under the streets of Manhattan exploded in a volcano-like blast, showering asbestos-laden debris. And two years before that, substandard levees gave way in New Orleans, opening the way for the floodwaters of Hurricane Katrina.

These are some of the most dramatic signs of the nation's failure to maintain and enhance its aging physical structures at a time when demands on roads, transit systems, sewage treatment plants and other vital facilities are rising. In the event of a catastrophic failure, many lives can be lost. But even the slower deterioration undermines our quality of life and retards economic growth. Traffic jams waste gasoline, pollute the air and exhaust drivers' patience. Disabled trains and subways strand commuters. Gridlocked airports disrupt travel plans. And power failures plunge millions into darkness.

Must be this kind of percipience that makes the NYTimes the paper of record, and such a 'lib'rul' threat to the fascisti, hunh?

But even the NYTimes cannot bring its 'self' to place the blame where it belongs: the last nearly 30 years of tax cuts for the wealthy and the CorpoRat masters of the system, and and the consequent reduction in resources needed for the maintenance of the infrastructure that these wholly gratuitous, unnecessary, and wasteful tax cuts necessitated.

Saturday, August 04, 2007

So The Senate Dems Caved On Domestic Spying

And there is much weeping, and wailing and gnashing of teeth among the left blogosphere this day.

But whence cometh such recriminations?

All must by now have had revealed to them the Beatific nature of the Democratic Party Elite! Verily are they not the poorest in Spirit? The most mournful?
Are they not the Meekest? And lo, by the rule of the 3/8 Beatitudes, thereby they do hope to inherit the Earth when they inherit its functional simulcrum, the White House?

Tin-Foil Alert
The Pukes Needed To Shift Blame for all the evident, damaging, outrageous failures of the last 7 years, while maintianing 'effective' power.

So they essentially "threw"--that is, they didn't pull out all the customary, proven, reliable stops to steal--the '06 elections.

They needed the appearance of the "Do-Nothing" Dems.

They got it.

Mission: Accomplished.

For all their rhetoric in front of the {People}, Dems are always still poor, 2nd-class supplicants before the table of the all-wealthy, all-powerful, all-determining Corporate State. Of course, they collapse on cue. Data mining is good for bidness.

As I said somewhere yestiddy: If you think 'terror' is bad for bidness, they you're in the wrong bidness, cully.

You Can't Spell R E P U B L I C A N Without N P R

Sara at Correntewire got it exactly right...

I listened to the NPR post-mortem on the Minneapolis bridge collapse this morning

followed by a 'side-bar' on the state of the US infra-structure.

You could have knocked me over with a feather! Know why? Listen to 'em.

There is not a single fucking WORD about tax cuts for the wealthy which have been the default, domestic economic policy bedrock, virtually uninterrupted, since 1980!

Who's to blame? NPR's expert sez it's the local pols. Their "vision" doesn't extent into architectural time--15 years out, minimum; the life-time of a domestic roof, more or less. They're gardeners, focusing on the current crop, the immediate weather, harvesting the low-hanging fruits, both votes and cash. The technologist cannot SEE the infra-structure's actual, political infra-structure

So there's nary a word about the impact on local maintenance budgets when highway funds to the states are cut. Scott Simon helpfully doesn't complicate matters by inquiring very deeply, either. The members of the maintenance/inspection teams--expensive, high-man-hour operations--report reduced crews for increased demands.

Simon at one point remarks that repairing all the 'deficient' bridges in the country now will cost "billions and billions of dollars."

There was no one present to wonder what reparative/restorative effect on the infrastructure the "billions and billions of dollars" poured out into the sands of Iraq might have. No word about this tragic, murderous mis-allocation of limited national resources to sustain the vain-glory and delusion of the Neo-Con cabal 'elected' (installed) on the promise of tax 'relief' for their financial/ideological sponsors.

Restoring, and simultaneously retro-fitting for energy efficiency, the decrepit USer infrastructure is a gold-plated, Gay-Rawn-TEED, lead-pipe-cinch prescription for domestic tranquility, and would do a LOT for the guarantees of L,L,&POH, if that were truly the goal of the political class, their masters and acolytes.

On the present evidence, I believe it safe to say that those are NOT the goals of the political class elites.

Which makes--or should--the actual contributions of that group more and more problematic, evanescent, even. But they've got "Paris Hilton", the "war," "terrorism," the "faltering economy," the "collapsing infrastructure," the entire media enterprise, and the power and force of law when all else fails, to protect 'em.

Friday, August 03, 2007

It's Gonna Be A Lot Harder To Defend The Borders Between State & Church When It's The Army Of God

and the Navy, and the Marines, and the fucking Air Forces of God, too, that's attacking 'em.

That's the implicit finding of a report issued recently on the perfusion and permeation of fundie/Xian evangelism in the ranks of the military, even--or especially--in the officer ranks.
Video, Report Details Evangelism at Highest Levels of US Military
Truthout's Jason Leopold reports,
"A report released publicly on Thursday by the Defense Department's (DOD) inspector general has found high-ranking Army and Air Force personnel violated long-standing military regulations when they participated in a promotional video for an evangelical Christian organization while in uniform and on active duty."

This is some scary, scary, scary shit brothers and sisters.
Christian Mission inside the Pentagon, soliciting souls, and proselytizing in the name of their lord, on my dollar, on my time, for the security of my country!?!? What the FUCK is that about.
Is there a Buddhist Mission down the hall? A Hindu Mission? A Muslim? How about a Hume Chapel?
Jesus H. Fucking Christ...
There are members of radical religious cells installed in critical positions in the fucking WAR Department.
If it were Muslims, or Hindus--to say nothing of Jews--there'd be no END of furor. But it's okay, cuz they're Xians???

I Doubt The Web As We Know It Will Outlive The Next Election Cycle

In his speech to the Yearly Kos, Howard Dean argued that the internet could just be our best weapon in the battle for a democratic world. And he's right.

Though I doubt he, or anyone else using the Nets today would either recognize or believe it, in a fairly short time, it may well be the epitaph on the virtual gravestone of the much-beloved, hitherto mostly anarchic 'Tubes.'

Every other medium of wide-spread public communication has been effectively co-opted by the oiligarchs and corpoRats to the interests of the ruling elites: First newspapers; then film; then radio, then TV. Next: Internet. Izzy Stone memorably remarked: Freedom of the press belongs to those who own one. The world belongs to who controls the agenda of the public discourse. There has been too much time, energy and money--to say nothing of the lives--expended by the ruling elites and the propaganda apparati of the State to gain a virtual stranglehold on the agenda-setting function of public communication to permit continued--to say nothing of eternal--untrammeled access to the public mind to anyone not already a certifiable, reliable, loyal member of the club. Not prudent.

I really think the watershed moment, which predicted the eventual neutralizing of the Web, was the impact of the so-called 'net roots' in the 2006 'election.' It was determinative in only a couple of contests. And even if, in the main, the effects were modest, it was a serious hint toward what might be the truly emancipatory consequences of unfettered political discourse, even in a democracy in decline.

You must see that is a threat to power which must be curtailed--regulated, channeled, neutralized---one way or another by those already in possession of and unwilling to relinquish, much less share, power.

Now it isn't even a matter of 'whether.' It is only 'when.'

And I do not know how the regulation I fear to be coming will be accomplished. I do know that the State and the big telecoms and the ownership of the SCUM (SoCalledUnbiasedMedia) have thousands of engineers and accountants and lawyers already hard at work on the problem of how to scuttle the democratizing potential of the Web.

My guess: it will be done through the application of coersive economic stimuli. Possibly ISPs requiring libel bonds in the millions of dollars before they'll agree to provide 'space' to bloggers?

I honestly do not know. I doubt (I HOPE) I am not of suffient meanness of spirit and/or deviousness of mind to devise the ultimate Web-killing strategy.

But I do know (I am, in any case, morally certain) there are whole squadrons of people who are, and are getting paid incredibly well for it.

Why Is Congress Considering Bushevik Lifetime Appointments?

Diane Feinstein, may her fibroids swallow her whole, broke party discipline and voted to pass the nomination of Judge Leslie Southwick, a red-neck, racist, cracker CorpoRat-fuck from the Mississippi piney woods, to a life-time postion of the US Circuit Court, out of the Senate Judicial Committee this week.
What the FUCK, Diane? Are you outta your fucking, feculent, wattled mind?
Wasn't your performance on the Roberts/Alito nominations enough of a disgrace, you fucking bint?
The US Circuit Courts do NOT need another racist, redneck, cracker asshole on any Court anywhere in the whole fucking country ever again.
And besides: There is absolutely no reason that the Senate should even be considering any controversial Bushevik nominee. They should be resolutely blocking ANY nomination for ANY lifetime Bushevik appointment.
Temps, okay...they'll be gone in Jan, 09, if not sooner.
But NO FUCKING WAY they should be approving ANY Puke Lifetime appointment.
Pay attention, Diane, you feckless, useless bag of crap.
I sure wish California could find a Democrat to run for Senate.

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Murdoch & Media Consolidation

In the Corporate state, the corporate media are State Media.

What is needed is a Constitutional Amendment (and a regime that honors the Constitution) limiting the number of media outlets that may be owned, operated, managed, or influenced by any single interest--personal, or corporate.

I'd say, no person, corporation, partnership nor any other association may own, manage, control, or otherwise influence any more than ONE newspaper, radio/tv station, or any other publically consumed media outlet per Congressional district.

The Amendment--or legislation associated with it--should also divest existing media giants of their multiple media properties.

Media should be local.

For reasons that are or ought to be obvious, in the current USer political culture, NONE of that--neither jot nor tittle--is gonna fuckin' happen, of course. Remember what happened to Howard Dean? One day after winning the Iowa primary, in 2004, Dean mentioned that one of his priorities as President would be to examine media concentration. Within hours, what mattered was not that he'd WON Iowa; the SCREAM was the story, and he was belabored with it so loudly and so often that his candidacy was effectively scuttled.

As for Murdoch, himself? Were I he, I wouldn't go sailing with my family, or flying in any single-engine aircraft.

(cross-posted at