Thursday, March 30, 2006

Pious Political Practices

Two different takes on the existence and effectiveness of the religious left.

Media Cannibalism

I mentioned a growing attack on certain forms of media (specifically the one that promote dialogue and feedback). According to Media Matters Bill O'Reilly is leading the charge.

Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Being Secure

Much like the Republican Party with their "Contract With America" back in 1994, the Democrats make their move to regain the majority behind their "Real Security" initiative.

Concerning Katrina

Bad Poll Numbers = Blame The Defeated Enemy!

President Bush says Saddam Hussein is the resason there's sectarian violence (aka, civil war) in Iraq.

But Stock in Malk!

President Bush says he wants to push for progress in science education, but how can that happen when he endorses intelligent design?

If such conflicting messages continue to come out of the White House, "No Child Left Behind" will become little more than an ironically-named disaster.

Tuesday, March 28, 2006


From Asia Times: "Last week's announcement that Iraq will now have to pay for its own reconstruction has left some observers wondering whether the country's yet-to-be-formed government will be up to the task. "

My first thought is, "No, they won't." But that depends on how they emerge from the current insurgency (aka, civil war).


Once again, I have to agree with Charley Rosen that J.J. Redick and Adam Morrison won't be impact players in the NBA.

Disclosure: I am an alumni of UMCP, which is severely anti-Duke. That being said, I always thought Duke was riding Redick hard throughout the season and Duke hasn't been known for being a one-man team. And other than Grant Hill and (now) Elton Brand, who else has left that program and came into their own (and don't think I'm saying Maryland players have faired better because I'm not)?

I actually thought Morrison would do better in the tournament, but as Rosen said, he got outmuscled as the rounds went on. Frankly I was shocked that he didn't try to compensate.

Where I differ with Rosen is this: their competitive streak will determine their longevity in the NBA more than their strength and offensive/defensive development. The league is full of one-dimensional specialists who make money, but if neither of these guys become more competitive they won't last long in the pros.

But of course, since the NCAA is forced to compete with high school phenoms, they will continue to overvalue their own product. So watch for Morrison and Redick to go about 4 or 5 slots higher than they should.

Now You See Him...

Former Liberian President Charles Taylor has "disappeared" before he was to have been handed over to stand trial on war crimes charges.

The Wandering Eye

I think Daryl Cagle has a point here.

The Print, The TV, The Radio and The Internet

I always thought that there was a media war of a different kind going on in America, but I wasn't sure how to conceptualize it until I saw this story by Media Matters. Apparently Bill O'Reilly is attacking the print media. Normally he rants are either red meat for his fan base or outright biased propaganda, but this time I think there's and underlining motive.

Print media has always involved (if not encouraged) feedback from it's audience, but response time is really slow. Plus people have to actually read the story, and reading isn't as big a pastime as it used to be. You also have to take the writer's stance at face value (unless you want to read something else to confirm or deny their opinion). And traditionally, there's research involved.

TV media is 98% a one-way street: they tell you things, and you shut up and listen. You can reply, but in TV feedback is filtered out and edited more. So a one-page rebuttal can appear as a two-sentence soundbite. Plus there's the visual: if the person giving the news looks cool or attractive, they're going to be more believable. Sad, but true. Of course, this setup is ideal for people who want the media to control (not inform) the masses.

Radio media is essentially print media with personality. Looks don't matter much, but a voice and a quick wit (at least for radio personalities) is often key. Feedback is better than print and TV because the audience can write-in and call-in. Thing is, radio always seem to work on a faster pace, so sound bites are very important.

Lastly, there is the online media. The good news is that anyone with a computer and internet access can join in. The bad news is anyone with a computer and internet access can join in. So people have to be careful with things like "the truth" and "plagiarism." Feedback is lightening quick, but online you can control whether that feedback is even recorded. It involves reading, writing and basic knowledge of computers, which can create a generation gap.

Now if were someone like O'Reilly, TV media and radio media would be my haven. I could say what I want for as long as I'm allowed and if I don't want to hear any backtalk I can ignore or alter it as it comes in. I would get voice and face recognition. I would get clips and soundbites.

Of course, I can see how O'Reilly would hate the print and online media. Both require some kind of research and/or verification before it can be accepted. There's more feedback involved, and if you don't like responding to feedback (especially negative feedback) you don't want to get involved in these forms of media. And while I freely admit that I don't have stats to support this, my gut tells me that people in the print and online media (compared to TV and radio) are more likely to have an stronger academic background (whereas the other two forms probably have people with a stronger entertainment background). I could be wrong.

Nevertheless, I can see where this is going. Print and online media doesn't come off as manipulative, and it's contributors aren't always obligated to any group or organization. So their danger lies in their independence. I suspect TV news (particularly cable news) will continue their assault on the online media (especially blogs, which aren't always media-influenced) and the print media. I think the AM/FM radio people will get more hostile towards the XM crowd. Time will tell whether the "revolution" will be televised, blogged, published or broadcasted.


Our Secretary of Defense gives himself a failing grade; ThinkProgress points out that this particular subject was considered crucial in the President's eyes.

Foul Play = Foul Ball

The latest victim of the Abramoff scandal maybe be D.C. baseball. I'm not kidding. According to the WashPost:

Officials from the Washington Wizards and Washington Capitals expressed similar
concern, although they say they won't be able to fully judge the effect until
seats at Verizon Center come up for renewal. Even the Washington Redskins, who
routinely sell out 91,665-seat FedEx Field, might not be immune.
"Washington, D.C., thrives on the lobbying business," [Nationals President Tony] Tavares said. "It's been part of the landscape here for a long, long time. And it's
pretty important to our team and our new stadium."

Let's hope that this isn't true. D.C. just got baseball back; and for people have gone through to keep it I'd hate for it to be lost because of something like this.

Monday, March 27, 2006

A Judicial Salute?

Why did SCOTUS Justice Scalia feel he had to give the Press the finger?

The Senate's Top Ten

A few days ago SurveyUSA came out with the approval ratings for the 100 US Senators. Considering elections are coming in November, and all the issues that are going on in D.C. (and the nation, for that matter), I was curious: what are the popular Senators doing (or not doing) to make them so popular?

Let's look at each of them a try to find out:

Republican Susan Collins enjoys a envious 72% approval rating. She was named "Port Person of the Year", she's sponsored "Read Across America Day" and she was presented "with an award from the American Dental Hygienists Association in appreciation for the Senator's leadership and work to improve oral health care services for all Americans" Her big issue is education. Why Republican haven't touted her accomplishments is beyond me, but it may have something to do with her being from Maine. Or the fact that Rush Limbaugh called her an ignorant demagogue (click here for proof if you don't have a subscription to Rush's site).

Democrat Kent Conrad (also at 72%) is fairly tough on abortion, and as his 43% rating by NARAL shows, fairly conservative on that and other social issues. Like Collins, he has a thing or to to say about education. His views on Social Security mirrors President Bush, but since the issue is on the backburner nobody really cares. And he's at least tried to issue legislation for "fiscal responsibility." Agriculture seems to be his ace card, and for North Dakota, it's a good one to have.

Like Collins, Olympia Snowe is a female Republican from Maine who enjoys a decent approval rating (71%). They even have the same NARAL score of 55%. However, (according to the press) Snowe's a supporter of small business. In addition, she (along with Sen. Lindsey Graham) has introduced a Terrorist Surveillance Act to the Senate, apparently in hopes of rescuing the President from his warrantless wiretapping debacle.

Besides being the only African-American Senator, Democrat Barack Obama has a notable approval rating of 70%. His fairly liberal record apparently hasn't hurt his popularity, despite his high NARAL rating and his comments on the situation in Darfur. He even has a blog! Nevertheless, everyone has their haters, and Obama is no exception.

Nebraska Democrat Ben Nelson also has a 70% approval rating. Why? Well, on the issues he's 100% pro-public education, pro-business, pro-life and an aboveaveragee advocate of civil rights. He's also an advocate for "rural health care" and agricultural issues.

Hawaii Democrat Daniel Inouye is at 69%, and has Watergate and Irancountrya as his claims to fame. Some will say that the passing of his beloved wife is a reason for his better-than-average approval rating, but those people ignore things like his flood investigations inKaya and Punaluu.

Like Inouye, one could argue that sympathy is the key reason Republican Mississippi Senator Trent Lott's 69% approval rating. Or maybe some Old Guard Republicans want him back as majority leader. Nevertheless, his strong suit has been Hurricane Katrina, and he is working pretty hard on the issue. Other than his stance on expanding stem cell research and the port deal, he's the most conservative member of the Top Ten.

In South Dakota, Democrat Tim Johnson's 69% rating is obvious. Although he received an "A" from the National Education Association, a failing grade from the Christian Coalition, and is a strong supporter of Social Security, his stances on the issues have been pretty middle-of-the-road. Then again, it's led some in the media to call him a "hypocrite."

Patrick Leahy, a Democratic Senator from Vermont, is kinda like Johnson: pro-business, "anti-Christian Coalition," in the middle everywhere else. He wasn't too keen on Bush's views on the torture ban, and right now he's dealing with the immigration issue with Republican Arlen Specter. Leahy sits pretty at 69%. Of course being a ranking member on the Judiciary Committee helps, especially when the President selects two new Justices.

Lastly we have Democrat Jack Reed from Rhode Island. Even at 68% he's liberal, with a notable pro-education record. He lead the charge against a Trojan Horse bill (stem cell legislationdisguisedd asantit-abortion legislation) and is considering censure for the Bush.

So what's the magic formula here? I don't think there's really any template per say. Everyone has apassionatee stance on education, which can only boost your support in your state. None of them are typical talk-show guests; so there's something to be said for being underexposed. Other than that, everyone from the liberal Democrat to the most conservative Republican here happily boasts a better-than-60% approval rating. So as long as you stay away from the Sunday Shows and work on education (and get results), it seems that you can do pretty much what you want in the US Senate.

BTW, that's three Republicans and seven Democrats who have a better-than-60% approval rating (are the Republicans sure they wanna push Bill Frist for their presidential candidate?).

Curious About China (and Hong Kong)

I received a comment about my last post concerning yet another port deal (this time involving China). It came from Chinalawblog (a very informative site BTW) and the message was:

"There is still a difference between Hong Kong and China and there is certainly a difference between the typical HK company and China company. This will be plenty interesting, however, to see how this all plays out. "

True indeed. Not being an expert on Hong Kong/China business relations myself, I'm asking if the commenter (I'm assuming it was either Mr. Harris or Mr. Dickinson) can give me an example of their differences, and if I could get their thoughts on how this situation is being viewed by both Hong Kong and China. Or better yet, if it's already been blogged, let me know and I'll link to it.

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Friday, March 24, 2006

Selling Out

From the Mercury News: "In the aftermath of the Dubai ports dispute, the Bush administration is hiring a Hong Kong conglomerate to help detect nuclear materials inside cargo passing through the Bahamas to the United States and elsewhere."

Hong Kong became part of China on July 1, 1997. China has been a communist government since 1949. Amercian conservatives hate communism, frequently labeling their enemies (liberals, for example) as "commies."

I'll be waiting for the conservative outrage, but I won't hold my breath.

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A Noble Chief

Partially because I haven't written about them in a while and partially because I'm such a fan: I wanted to share my geekified amazement at seeing this statue of Optimus Prime in China.

Also, I think we can all appreciate his tagline: "Freedom is the right of all sentient beings."

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Thursday, March 23, 2006

Cheney's Hotel Habits

CNN picks up on a story by the smoking gun about the Vice President's suite preferences. The juicy details? He likes a 68-degree room temperature, plenty of Sprite, and the TV tuned to FOX News (is that really a shock)?

Considering the excess of his co-workers, this list seems relatively...conservative. But then again, his ilk is always more willing to waste tax-payer money over their own. And now that I know he reads the New York Times and USA Today, I know where to send any LTE (if I want to get his attention).


The White house strategy for the next week or two will be to attack the media into submission (so they won't echo liberal or Democrat-based sentiments) and deny that anything that's gone wrong is their fault ("We never made connections between Saddam and Al Qeada," "I’ve avoided predicting the timing [for the length of the Iraq War]").

Well, this is just a reminder what members of the Bush Administration have said about invasions, occupations and trying to win wars. Some comments are old, some are fairly fresh (politically speaking).

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

A Robe By Any Other Name...

The Washington Post has a new blogger to give a conservative viewpoint to their audience (though the paper would be hard-pressed to find any writer/reporter/blogger in their employ who classifies themself as "liberal"). His latest idea? Compare Supreme Court Justices to the KKK.

Between this turn of events and cable newpeople like Chris Matthews, Joe Scarborough and Tucker Carlson, I'm begining to wonder where this theory of a "liberal media" is coming from.

Best Laid Plans

President Bush's desire to bring democracy to the Middle East has hit a snag. An Afghan man who converted from Islam to Christianity is on trial for making that change and is facing death. Although there might be a legal technicality in the case, it's clear that (once again) Bush was asleep at the wheel.

When you add this to ignoring the warnings about 9/11, Iraq's real nuclear capabilities and the impact of Hurricane Katrina, you really have to wonder what is exactly involved in this man's decision making process. Obviously, gathering facts, stats and data isn't part of it. It's hard to argue what political advantages this brings Bush; how does the execution of a Christian in a Muslim-dominated country rally the religious, conservative base of his party when he was a key player in the formation of that country's government?

If he could actually back up his claim that his administration can do more than one thing at a time, things like this wouldn't happen. By my count, there's three things he's done that people of all political spectrums can agree he's done well: pass a tax cut and win two elections. Every other issue is either up for debate, in flux, or is going badly (No Child Left Behind, Medicare, Social Security Reform).

Now some would say that he's just not good at governance. Maybe, but wouldn't it be nice if just one time there was a issue where he crossed his T's and dotted his I's? One domestic policy where he knew the pros and cons, one foreign issue where every scenario was thoroughly discussed in his presence? Don't the American people deserve that kind of vigilance?

I think they do. I think they deserve more than empty "Trust Me" speeches. I think they deserve disclosure. But let's start small: someone give the President a newspaper (make that five or six) so and let him read the news himself so he can get a first-hand view of what's really going on in this country. Because at this rate it won't be long before the persecution that's occurring in Afghanistan will be mirrored in America.


Sunday, March 19, 2006

"The Man Who Brought Ayatollahs' Rule to Iraq"

This is a quote from As'ad AbuKhalil (author; professor of political science at California State University; and visiting professor at the University of California at Berkeley) as he describes President Bush and reflects on the Iraq War three years.

"Why Do You Build Me Up?"

President Bush loves straw men because they drive the point of his speeches.

Friday, March 17, 2006

Proper Perspective

As the Iraq War reaches its three-year mark, I think it's important to remember what people were saying in the early days: namely, that the Bush Administration was 100% right and the critics were 100% wrong.


They are both cool, but for different reasons. One is by Matilda Jane; the other is by "Blackstone." Give 'em a go.

Thursday, March 16, 2006

Go Ahead; Laugh.

Pictures rarely lie. And most of the time they're pretty funny. Definitely a site worth viewing.

Getting an Assist

Graduation Madness gets a major endorsement.

That Sinking Feeling

The more his numbers fall, the more I see President Bush declaring war on Iran. War has always been the best option for him when the chips were down. And he hasn't shown any signs that he's going to change his foriegn policy.


Wednesday, March 15, 2006

Bush Surrenders to the Terrorists

Long Ago, in a White House Far, Far Away, Scott McClellan denounced Rep. Murtha's call for a timetable to leave Iraq. He equated such actions as surrendering to the terrorists. President Bush himself has expressed his disapproval of timetables, and has labeled those who think that way and those who sympathize with them as quitters as well.

So imagine my surprise to learn that Bush has "set a target for transition," a.k.a., a "timetable."

Like MediaMatters, I'm wondering: why hasn't anyone called Bush on the flip-flop? Why hasn't any prominent Congressmen denounced the "surrender?"

Bad Poll Numbers = Invade a New Country!

Fortunately for America, Anne Coulter is not the Secretary of State. Otherwise, we would have invaded Iran and China by now.

A Taste of British Honesty

All the juiciest leaked infor comes from Great Britain. Their assessment of America's post-war plans for Iraq? "All faith and no planning."

Now with things like a failing medicare plan, poor response to Hurricane Katrina, and a push for faith-based programs, it's hard to argue with the Brit's conclusion.

Well, That's Comforting

Donald Rumsfeld wants us to know that while the conflict in Iraq looks bad, it won't be like a civil war...or at least the American Civil War.

"It's OK to Cheat." Huh?

There's an MSN story titled: "The New Monogamy: Cheating by the Rules?" basically, the premise is this: as long as the couple has pre-arranged standards for what they can do with other people, they can do them and it won't be considered cheating. This ranges from kissing on the lips to all-out orgies.

I agree with some of the critics: if you want more than one lover, why partner up with someone in the first place? And I didn't even get into the issue of STDs.

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Fool Me Once...

There's no proof Iran is smuggling weapons to Iraq, says General Pace. Of course, the Bush Administration would want to think otherwise; they way they can get public support for a third war. Of course, it's becoming apparent to everyone that facts weren't being gathered in regards to Iraq.

Maybe we should be listening to the generals, and not the politicians, on this one.

If You Can't Beat 'Em, Buy Their Work When They Die

ThinkProgress talks about how the CIA has been doing some revisions of some of America's most noted works, particularly Animal Farm.

That the CIA would alter the ending to a film to make American Capitalism move attractive isn't that surprising. What is surprising is that they were willing to wait until the author had died so they could by the rights from his widow.

"Chaos and Carnage"

That was President Bush's warning in a speech about Iraq today. My question is: if they are so weak, why haven't they been defeated yet?

Also, when will the White House admit that the insurgents are not terrorists, Iraqis playing (what they believe to be) the role of freedom fighters?

Zone Defense

A blogger for NCAA strikes back at ThinkProgress for their "Graduation Madness" campaign. Naturally, ThinkProgress has a rebuttal to the rebuttal.

To his credit, the writer does close with "I’m not an expert on the particulars of the campaign, but I like the premise. Anything that makes people more accountable and will help the academic success of NCAA student-athletes is an outstanding idea in my book."

It'll be interesting to see if the NCAA itself will issue a statement, but for the moment it seems that they're content with letting their sympathizers speak for them.

Monday, March 13, 2006

Twilight for DINOs

The title says it all: Democrat to Face Lieberman for Nomination.

For those who don't know, Joe Leiberman is a Democrat too. I just find the heading amusing.

Can't Wait for the Call-Ins

"The idea is that we have diverse programs that look at health issues,
AIDS' prevention, and racism, for example

The owner of that quote? Sandro Correia, the project coordinator of a radio station in Sao Paulo, Brazil.

The idea? FM station Radio Zona, a radio station owned by prostitutes.

Wonder if there will be live streaming?

Do It Yourself

Perhaps a forshadowing, but President Bush tells the Iraqi people that they have to "embrace compromise."

Funny how these kind of calls are rarely practiced over here.

A Cure in the Hand...Is Worth Big Time

Sec. of Defense Donald Rumsfeld has alot of interest in the Bird Flu issue. An by "interest," I mean "potential to make gobs of money."

Same Dressing, Different Salad

Remember what Fox did to shows like "In Living Color" and "New York Undercover?" Well, it looks like the new owners of Johnnie Cochran's firm is using that playbook. And the black community is understandably pissed.

Now I don't care that white people are controlling the firm. That in of itself is minor compared to what they want to do: reduce the focus the firm had on civil rights cases. This decision could have happened with any of race or ethnic group controlling the firm, but to have a now white-owned law firm deciding to minimize the civil rights cases it takes doesn't help their image.

Of course, there had to a process for approving their ownership of the firm, right? Or something in Cochran's will, at least? I can't believe this takeover happened without any objection.

A Slam Dunk

ThinkProgress is pushing NCAA sponsors to make sure more college basketball players graduate. I think it's a worthy cause, and if anyone agrees you can learn more by going to their factsheet or clicking the link I've posted.

Saturday, March 11, 2006

Million Dollar Murder-Suspect

A millionare who wanted to avoid a costly divorce ends up paying a different kind of price.

Thursday, March 09, 2006

It's Hard to Quit Cold Trukey

It's sad when addicts can't overcome their unhealthy habits:

After saying in January that he would end his regular meetings with lobbyists, Sen. Rick Santorum (Pa.), the third-ranking GOP leader in the Senate, has continued to meet with many of the
same lobbyists at the same time and on the same day of the week.

Santorum, whose ties to Washington lobbyists have been criticized by his Democratic challenger,
suspended his biweekly encounters on Jan. 30. His decision came as Democrats named him as their top target in November's Senate races, and after the guilty plea of former lobbyist Jack Abramoff to charges of conspiring to corrupt public officials.

But in the month since his announcement, Santorum has held two meetings attended by the same core group of lobbyists, and has used the sessions to appeal for campaign aid, according to
participants. Both of those meetings were convened at the same time as the previous meetings -- 8:30 a.m. -- on the same day of the week -- Tuesday -- and they lasted for about as long as the earlier meetings -- one hour.

Maybe Sen. Santorum just needs some time off.

Defying An Emperor

I'm surfing through the nets, and what do I see? This strange headline from MSNBC:

Will Senate GOP also defy Bush on ports deal?

"Defy Bush?" I said, "but he's not a king;"
Apparently the site employs those prone to dream.

"Defy" connotes Bush has nigh-absolute power,
But if poll numbers speak true, his image has soured.

A now videos show his knew of Katrina,
Despite he early claims that no one could have seen her.

Similar to Jack, a lobbyist and friend,
Someone who helped Republicans to no end.

Regardless of facts, the media continues
To push Bush's regality in about every venue.

As if he was a savior who descended from Heaven,
And spoke the Good Word like a prophet or reverend.

To make this image stick, they go out of their way
To book big-name conservatives who talk forever and a day.

They spin and they parse and they bob and they weave,
But basically, all they do is lie and deceive.

The press used to question both sides of the aisle,
Now they kiss those in power as they wink with a smile.

Is it any wonder now, those who voice their opinion
Get flamed, smeared or attacked by Bush's top minions?

Or that political actions now consist of crimes,
And screened "open forums" are paid with our dimes?

To dissent and to argue is equated with treason,
Yet wiretaps and ports selling are done without reason.

To this I send not a threat, but a solution:
The last "King" America had lead to a revolution.

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

Prelude to a Standoff?

Iran's been referred to the U.N. Security Council, but it hasn't stopped the country from taking a swipe at the U.S.

Whether or not Iran has nukes, tempting President Bush when he's in approval poll freefall is probably not a good idea.

Murtha Nation Returns

Crooks and Liars has a great clip of John Murtha's assesment of VP Dick Cheney's comments (regarding Iran).

Saturday, March 04, 2006

Buried Stories

WashPost buried two stories in the back of their Saturday "A" section, but that does little good on the internet! Here they are:

President Bush is giving Iran 30 days to stop their nuclear program.

Army General George W. Casey says that the "crisis" in Iraq has passed, but civil war is still possible.

Broken Spell

With UPN and the WB going "bye-bye," the show "Charmed" gets caught in the crossfire.

Crazy Like A Fox

Dave Chappelle has reappeared; in part to promote his new movie, but also to squash rumors that he went insane last summer.

While I'm sure there are things Chappelle has chosen not to share with the public, I can't blame him for his actions. I've seen what happens to popular minority/race-themed programs once they get really popular and the network wants to "tweak" things. The best recent examples would be "In Living Color" and "New York Undercover."

Besides, his movie got the Fugees together for the first time since 1997. He can't all that bad.

(Revising) A Hero's Story

There is a new investigation into the death of Pat Tillman. From the WashPost:

The Army originally reported that Tillman was killed in a firefight with
enemy forces in the rugged mountains of Afghanistan near the Pakistani border,
and officials heralded his heroism with a tale of how he was charging a hill
against the enemy when he was shot. Weeks later, after a nationally televised
memorial service, the Army revealed that he had been gunned down by members of
his own unit who had rounded a corner in a Humvee and mistook him and a
coalition Afghan fighter for the enemy.

When Tillman's story first came out, it was latched on to the growing number of military hero stories the media was finding; stories that injected the American people with a since of nationalistic pride which kept many from asking probing questions about the war itself.

I always found it interesting that stories of soldiers "fighting the enemy until their last breath" got more play with the media (and the Bush Administration) than any other soldier story (lack of body armor, back-to-back re-deployment, not being able to see the coffins when they're flown back to the States). I can only guess that from the media's perspective, such stories keep viewers interested in the war itself. But if that's the media's logic, they are little more than enablers; traditionally speaking, the media has always questioned the actions of the government, regardless of who's running it.

The sad thing is this who idea of "embedded reporters" was supposed to give the viewer an insight that wasn't available in past wars or conflicts. But if Pat Tillman's case is any indication, the majority of the media outlets seem incapable of getting the true stories of what's happening in Iraq. No soldier who died for his/her country deserves such treatment.

Friday, March 03, 2006

Biting Back

Replays of last night's Mavericks-Spurs game clearly show that Robert Horry bit Jerry Stackhouse on the arm.

In the past I've been more of a fan of Horry than Stackhouse, but this incident has me rethinking that decision. Athletes should not have to bite each other.

Understandably, Stackhouse took out his frustrations on the ref closest to the action: veteran referee Dick Bavetta.

Interesting thing is Bavetta has a history of clashing with players and other refs, making Stackhouse's claims more valid than usual.

Around the Internets

ThinkProgress has quotes from at least one military official President Bush isn't listening to.

Daily Kos contributor georgia10 has the goods on another Homeland Security contraversy.

From Stars and Stripes: "Triangle of Death."

Powerline catches Justice Ginsburg napping.

And more deadly attacks in Baghdad today...this explains their daytime curfew.

Jessica Alba's upset over Playboy, but Scarlet Johansson isn't holding a grudge with a grouping fashion designer.

Bill Simmons chimes in on USA Basketball.


Get the Supremes Ready

South Dakota prepares to usher in the next battle to overturn Roe v. Wade.

He Left The US For A Reason

Bad poll numbers has President Bush falling.

Thursday, March 02, 2006

Keeping Your Eye Off The Hardball

Media Matters notes that instead of focusing on the fact that President Bush did have info on the levees being breached when he implied that he didn't, Chris Matthews decides to attack John Kerry for things Kerry said in the 2004 Presidential Campaign.

I'm not sure how Kerry's votes on going to Iraq and funding the mission afterwards had an impact on Bush's decision to not heed warnings about Hurricane Katrina, but if anyone can make that connection, it's Chris Matthews.


They Must Have Other Priorities

The Pentagon doesn't think that 72% of the military wanting out of Iraq in a year is a big idea.

The Disaster President?

Is there a correlation between President Bush's vacations and major catastrophes? ThinkProgress probes this question.

Robber Baron

Baron Davis is "shocked" and "appalled" that he wasn't chosen for the USA Basketball's training camp.

Well, my impression of Golden State this year hasn't changed. In addition, I think Davis should look at what USA basketball was looking for before he gets all outraged. Does he honestly think he's better than Gilbert Arenas right now? Which team has a better record? Which team has the best chance of making the playoffs right now? Which player gets along better with their teammates and coaches?

Maybe Davis should take the next two years to work on his defense, passing and ball-handling. Then he can give USA Basketball a reason to regret not inviting him.

End of Act Two

Debate on the Patriot Act has ended, but not the way people like Sen. Russ Feingold would have wanted.

UPDATE: Russ and Co. are making one last ditch effort. You can see it on C-SPAN.

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Strange Responsibility

Saddam Hussein not only admits ordering the Dujail trials, he says that he (and not his subordinates) should bear the full brunt of the Iraqi judicial system.

Fantasy Vs. Reality

"Don't Have a Constitutional Crisis, Man"

I suggest that the writers of "The Simpsons" do two things: rehire Conan O'Brien and have more episodes concerning the constitution, cause that's the only way people will know what their rights are.

Bad Poll Numbers = Interview Time!

"Liberal" President Bush did an interview the other day with ABC. Highlights includes his feelings that poll number mean little to him and that America's preparedness level is OK (I'm feeling safer already).

ThinkProgress is in shock that Bush had to see a video montage in order to access that things were going bad in Katrina. But considering that he was giving John McCain a birthday cake and strumming on a guitar while people were drowning, I'm not that surprised.

On My Waitlist

I'm thinking of adding this site to our blogroll, but I just discovered it so I wanna learn more. But so far, it looks really cool.

Now if there was only a site that did politics, movies/TV, sports and music, I'd be in heaven.

Tucker: A Man and His Daydream

Tucker Carlson has a new angle for explaining the political shortcomings of the Bush Administration: President Bush is a liberal.

Of course, Tucker can't come out and say this himself, so he has a guy from the Ronald Reagan Era do it for him (and we all know how the government shrunk under Reagan's strict presidency, right?):

TUCKER CARLSON, HOST, "SITUATION": Bush is a liberal? I mean, this is going to come as a huge shock to the many obsessive Bush haters who think he's a right-wing maniac. Explain.

BRUCE BARTLETT, AUTHOR, "IMPOSTOR": Well, I think there's a difference between saying somebody is not a conservative and saying they're a liberal. I believe it was Bill Buckley who said George Bush is conservative, but he is not a conservative. He's not one of us, basically.
His conservatism is the conservatism of the guy who says, you know, like Archie Bunker, the good old days and why is everything, you know, not working the way it used to? It's not borne out of thought or reason or analysis.

Well, there you have it. Bush is Archie Bunker; a fake conservative. Ipso-facto, he's liberal. So I suppose the 34% of voters who think he's doing a good job are liberals, huh? Or that Michael Moore made that movie because he wanted to help Bush win the election. Or that blog stories like this is just a way liberals like to tease people they favor.

Tucker needs to grow a spine. If he wants to call out the President, at least have the guts to do it himself and not drag in a Reaganite to do his dirty work.

And this crackmonkey he brought in needs to get a clue too. If Bush wasn't the model for conservatism, why did you allow him to be nominated? I'm sure during the 2000 elections Reaganites still had pull within the Republican Party. You can't tell me that if they really had grave concerns that they wouldn't have pulled the plug on Bush. Either Karl Rove had something on people like Bartlett, or Brucey-boy has just gotten down off a five-year meth-bender.

So enough with this "Bush is really liberal" nonsense. Every SOTU address he's given says otherwise. Every speech he's given says otherwise. His handling of Iraq, Hurricane Katrina, Supreme Court Justices, and warrantless wiretapping say otherwise.

President Bush is a conservative. It's just that he's also a poor leader and multitasker, and Tucker & Co. don't want that to hurt the Republicans election hopes in November.