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Saturday, July 31

Democratic National Convention speeches

You have to hand it to Apple. You can get some of the speeches from the DNC at Apple iTunes Music Store for free. My Apple stock investment paid for my recent house renovation. Go iPod! Go iTunes!
and yes I am also a Mac geek

Capitol Hill Blue: Is This Website For Real?

Is the news at Capital Hill Blue for real? They have such good news there like the President losing his mind and now Nancy Reagan's telling the Rethugs to stick it. There is just too much justice in this latest article "Nancy Reagan to Bush: 'We Don't Support Your Re-Election'" for me to possibly believe it, but I'll try. Here are some snips:

“Mrs. Reagan does not support President Bush’s re-election and neither to most members of the President’s family,” says a spokesman for the former First Lady.

snip

Nancy Reagan has told close followers she believes Bush and the current Republican leadership have divided America with their extreme views. She has told Republican leaders she wants nothing to do with the party or Bush.

snip

During the week of Reagan’s funeral, the former First Lady “went ballistic” when she learned the Bush campaign was test marketing new ads that used Reagan’s photos and speeches in an effort to show he supported Bush and his re-election. She personally called Republican Party Chief Ed Gillespie to demand the ads be destroyed.

Too funny

A message from the White House West. Will Ferrel does a great George Bush impression and a funny Bush commercial with out takes.... oh and it's for a good cause.
(hat tip to Amanda at Mouse Words. Amanda's blog is extremely well written and full of interesting news too. You should be reading it.)

Friday, July 30

That cinched it for me

John Kerry - Speech to the 2004 Democratic National Convention: "I don't want to claim that God is on our side. As Abraham Lincoln told us, I want to pray humbly that we are on God's side. And whatever our faith, one belief should bind us all: The measure of our character is our willingness to give of ourselves for others and for our country.

"These aren't Democratic values. These aren't Republican values. They're American values. We believe in them. They're who we are. And if we honor them, if we believe in ourselves, we can build an America that's stronger at home and respected in the world."

Miss Georgia Sex Offenders 2004 Pageant

weird.
(Hat tip to Horkulated)

Possible Terror Threat?

Thanks to information from Pete at Dark Window, who is currently in an underground bunker in an undisclosed location, we are alerted by the FBI to another possible terror threat in New Mexico and California.

What is most frightening about this possible terror threat that made the AP wire is that it is "unsubstantiated, uncorroborated and the official who reported it spoke only on condition of anonymity."

What's more, there are no specific dates, times, locations. No one knows why this information was issued and no one was put on heightened alert. Tom Ridge has no specific information either.

You can't make this stuff up.

Bitchin'

by pissed off patricia

 
Who's Your Daddy?  Who's da man?  Yeah baby!  We got your candidate!
 
I'm writing this bleary eyed and sleepy.  Yeah, but I'm smiling, because Senator, and soon to be president, Kerry had me last night.  He had me with his daughters and his band of brothers.  He did it.  He told me what I needed to hear and he did it well.  He can be president and he will be.
 
Senator Kerry convinced me, and hopefully all Americans watching last night, that he can be the man to take our country to the high side of admiration in the world.  That's something that no one can say about the present administration.
 
When Sen. Kerry's daughters spoke about their dad, I cried.  What a dad he has been. I wanted to have had a dad like that.  When Max Cleland spoke, I envied his friendship with Senator Kerry.  Damn, who wouldn't?
 
Senator Kerry knows that war is more than watching an Army vs. Navy football game and eating pretzels.  When it comes to defending our country, Senator Kerry won't choke. 
 
Last night was bliss for Democrats and America.  If you're a Democrat, be proud today because you are well represented in this 2004 presidential race.  The world will most likely agree. 
 
Sure we'll hear the downside of all this in the days to come, but for now, lets smile and enjoy the after glow of a great night of love.  This wasn't a one night stand.  It was the beginning of a long and happy  relationship. 

Thursday, July 29

Bitchin'

by pissed off patricia

When I'm really, really mad about something, the last thing in the world I want is for someone to pat me on my head and say, there, there, everything is going to be all right, just calm down.  I would much rather hear the simple phrase, I understand.

That's the way I feel about this Democratic convention with their scrubbed and sanitized speeches.  I feel like they’re saying, don't show your anger and frustration, just calm down.  Well, I won't calm down.  There are soldiers being murdered every single damned day in Iraq.  That makes me angry.  There are jobs going across the ocean with a one-way ticket.  That makes me angry.  The educational system in America is crumbling.  That makes me angry.  American's elderly citizens are going hungry in order to afford their medicine so that they may stay alive.  That makes me angry.  Our water and air is being legally poisoned.  That makes me angry.  Under the leadership of george bush, our country has become the enemy to much of the world.  Damn straight I'm mad, and I'm pretty damned sure that I'm not alone.

About half of America is mad as hell.  Tonight I sure would like to hear Senator Kerry at least say, I understand.  Sure, I'm going to vote for him.  No one could stop me.  But, I wish he would acknowledge that he understands why I can't just calm down.   I wish he would let me know that he realizes that there's a freight train of disaster heading our way and now is not the time for Democrats to calm down.  I want him to get energized and tell us how he plans to stop that train that bush is blindly driving to hell.  Show us the emotion.  Show us the understanding.  And for god's sake, acknowledge that we have a reason to be mad as hell even if we aren't supposed to show it.


Here's Our Church Membership Listing, Mr Bush

To: Bush/Cheney Re-election Campaign Headquarters
From: "Rev." David Batstone
Re: Our Service to the King

Dear Brothers and Sisters in the Kingdom:

I can't tell you how inspired I am by your detailed plan of action leading up to the November election. Being an evangelical pastor, I wasn't sure how I was going to mobilize my congregation to make a faithful commitment in the realm of politics. But rest assured, we are following diligently the 22 duties you so generously offered, so that God's will may be made manifest in the re-election of George W. Bush and Dick Cheney for four more years.

As per your request, I sent yesterday a directory of our church membership to your campaign headquarters here in California. All addresses and telephone numbers are up-to-date, which I trust will be quite useful for your field team as they seek to make personal connections with our flock.

Our pastoral staff even put stars next to the names of those members who have given more than $1,000 to our church during the past year. We do not have an especially wealthy congregation, but as I reminded them last week in my sermon, if a poor widow can give a mite, so might we open our hearts and checkbooks to the burning Bush of Texas, whom God has led to Washington for our sakes.

I do not suffer fools lightly, and for the sake of the gospel will continue to preach boldly words of political action. From now until October, at the close of each service we will have a call forward for those wayward individuals who have not yet registered to vote. My elders stand waiting, registration form in hand, for the Spirit to move those hardened by other political leanings, or perhaps lukewarm in their service to the King.

No, brothers and sisters, we will not hide our light under a bushel. We have restructured our Sunday School programs for the fall to reinforce the importance of Christian citizens taking on the mantle of conservative causes. Your Voter Guides will be distributed to each member of the church - the young marrieds as well as the seniors - and will become the focus of our Bible studies during the Sunday School hour.

You will be pleased to hear that our planting of seeds already is yielding fruit. By its own inspiration, the Visitation Committee announced its plans to suspend visits to the sick and elderly for the months of October and November (except in those cases of impending death). Instead, these faithful souls will use their hours of ministry going door to door in the neighborbood surrounding the church, handing out your Voter Guides and, if God opens hearts, asking for our neighbors to volunteer for Bush/Cheney '04.

I cannot recall a time when our flock was so focused on a single mission. In no small part we have you to thank. The campaign potlucks you demanded did not even seem like a duty; after the meal, we sang songs of praise for the divine blessing given our nation under Republican leadership. Thanks be to God, I now know how the people of Judea must have felt when He bestowed on King David His eternal wisdom to guide His people in a "united states" of Israel.

Do not fear, my brothers and sisters. On that day of judgment in November, when that great roll is unscrolled, rest assured that you will find each of our names recorded in the Republican column.

David Batstone writes for Sojourners, sojo.net, a magazine and ezine about spirituality, politics and culture. If you are like me and feel that the Republicans act as if they own God and Christianity, then this is a great website for you to check out and subscribe to their weekly mailing. Even if you don't practice your religion anymore, most likely you suspect that something is very wrong with the "God" whom the Republicans have hijacked. Sojourners has marvelous writers who can put into words those feelings you have about these times.

UPDATE: The above piece is a satire. Seems real doesn't it?

The President's Erratic Behavior Revisited

Capitol Hill Blue is claiming that the preznit is looney tunes again and was prescribed "powerful anti-depressant drugs to control his erratic behavior, depression and paranoia" which can "impair the President’s mental faculties and decrease both his physical capabilities and his ability to respond to a crisis."

Apparently his aids were concerned when Bush stormed out of a press conference recently when asked about his relationship to Ken Lay and then flipped out backstage. I remember that story. Bush manages to get away with avoiding answering questions all the time. He's the teflon president isn't he?

I wonder what drugs they are giving him that could impair his mental faculties any further than they already were? My friend's friend who was having religious delusions was given lithium. That's a powerful drug. Seriously, I'm surprised that Bush wasn't locked up in a padded cell when he first said that God wanted him to be President. Or how about when he said that God told him to strike Iraq? Most recently, he told the Amish that God speaks through him. Is this normal behavior? Did Bush say this before or after he was on them powerful drugs? Hmm.

Iraqi Reality TV

We've read the stories about residential neighborhoods in Iraq being damaged or destroyed by the liberation process of the coalition of the willing. We've seen the pictures of parents holding their dismembered children in their arms and looking up to heaven asking god "why?" For many of us around the world with hearts and souls, we too asked "why?"

The evilness of Saddam Hussein was supposed to make what we did in Iraq ok according to the corporate owned journalists who sold their hearts and souls for a job in front of a camera. But those of us who read know that the liberation of Iraq cost a lot more than billions of US taxpayer dollars, the death and mutilation of thousands of people including our troops and America's good reputation in the rest of the world. The latter is one good reason that it's time for a regime change in our country.

I can hardly imagine living in war torn Baghdad. I can hardly imagine how I'd feel if a liberating force came into my town and country and ripped it to shreds killing family members and destroying our homes in order to free us from George Bush and Republican neocons. When I flip through the channels on my TV and see all the crap the media is feeding the American people, I can't believe it sometimes. We have the stupidest reality shows that only prove just how vapid our society has become.

Our vapid television ideas made their way to Iraq but with a twist. A good one. Reality TV has come to Baghdad. A new TV show called "Labor and Materials" shows houses blasted by bombs and local battles come back to life with new windows, walls, furniture and appliances in a surprising way because the show's host appears at the door of unsuspecting war victims and then they proceed to put the house back together. The goods are donated by Iraqi viewers at this time, not advertisers (although they are considering advertisers because of the enormity and expense of the make overs. But how's that for human spirit?

"The main point isn't to rebuild the house, but to show the change in the psychology of the family during the rebuilding," says Ali Hanoon, the show's director. "The rebuilding has a psychological effect on the families - their memories, their lives, are in these walls."

Unfortunately, according to the article in the Christian Science Monitor the bombings aren't over, the suffering isn't over and this makes "Labor and Materials" truly a reality TV show.

Wednesday, July 28

Freedom of Oppression

Watch Ed Helms from COMEDY CENTRAL take advantage of the Free Speech Zone in Boston. It's hilarious as he tests it out before a Boston cop: "Labia, urethra, vagina, penis, penis, penis!" Ya gotta love this guy.

Political Humor

Found this on a yahoo group. Author unknown but quite funny.

REPUBLICAN NATIONAL COMMITTEE CONVENTION SCHEDULE New York, NY

06:00 PM Opening Prayer led by the Reverend Jerry Falwell
06:30 PM Pledge of Allegiance
06:35 PM Burning of Bill of Rights (excluding 2nd amendment)
06:45 PM Salute to the Coalition of the Willing
06:46 PM Seminar #1 "Getting your kid a military deferment"
07:30 PM First Presidential Beer Bash for Bush
07:35 PM Serve Freedom Fries
07:40 PM EPA Address #1: Mercury, it's what's for dinner.
08:00 PM Vote on which country to invade next
08:10 PM Call EMTs to revive Rush Limbaugh
08:15 PM John Ashcroft Lecture: The Homos are after your children
08:30 PM Round table discussion on reproductive rights (MEN only)
08:50 PM Seminar #2 Corporations: The government of the future
09:00 PM Condi Rice sings "Can't Help Lovin' Dat Man"
09:05 PM Second Presidential Beer Bash for Bush
09:10 PM EPA Address #2 Trees: The real cause of forest fires
09:30 PM Break for secret meetings
10:00 PM Second prayer led by Pat Robertson
10:15 PM Lecture by Carl Rove: Doublespeak made easy
10:30 PM Rumsfeld demonstration of how to squint and talk macho
10:35 PM Bush demonstration of trademark "deer in headlights" stare.
10:40 PM John Ashcroft demonstrates new mandatory kevlar chastity belt
10:45 PM Clarence Thomas reads list of black republicans
10:46 PM Third Presidential Beer Bash for Bush
10:50 PM Seminar #3 Education: a drain on our nation's economy.
11:10 PM Hilary Clinton Pinata
11:20 PM Second Lecture by John Ashcroft: "Evolutionists--The dangerous new cult"
11:30 PM Call EMTs to revive Rush Limbaugh again.
11:35 PM Blame Clinton
11:40 PM Laura serves milk and cookies
11:50 PM Closing Prayer led by Jesus Himself
12:00 PM Nomination of George W. Bush as Holy Supreme Planetary Leader





Terrorist Websites


Al Qaeda's Home Page

From csmonitor.com:
"Terrorists spread their messages online
A growing number of Al Qaeda websites offer instructions for kidnapping and killing victims.

By Faye Bowers
WASHINGTON One Al Qaeda website offers chilling details on how to conduct private and public kidnappings. It points out the number of cells essential to target and and hide victims. It details how to handle hostages - force them to taste the food first, for instance. It gives advice on negotiating tactics (gradually kill the hostages if 'the enemy' stalls) and on releasing captives (be alert to tracking devices planted in the ransom money).

The Al Qaeda site, called Al Battar, which means The Sword, is posted on the Internet twice a month. It's one of several websites that the terrorist group and its supporters built after the US successfully routed them from Afghanistan in late 2001.

And it is one of some 4,000 websites that, experts say, now exist to carry on a 'virtual' terror war - and plan actual attacks."

Hey! I thought we were safer and that we broke up the terrorist cells. Damn liberal media is trying to scare me.

Campaign Finance Laws: Schmampaign Finance Laws

washingtonpost.com:
For Lobbyists, Big Spending Means Big Presence

"Thanks to a loophole in campaign finance laws, a presidential convention is the one place where corporations and labor unions can still spend with abandon to influence holders of high office. Lobbyist-paid festivities are nothing new during presidential conventions, of course. But this year they are more numerous and lavish than ever.
...
The possibility that Democrats might take back the White House or regain power in Congress has fueled all the lobbyists' partygoing. 'They're covering their bets,' says Larry Noble, executive director of the nonpartisan Center for Responsive Politics. 'Corporations are very pragmatic; they are always counting on the possibility of change.'

What's more, the lobbying community has not held back when Democrats have asked for funds. Fifteen corporations, unions and foundations have each given at least $1 million to the Boston host committee, including Bank of America Corp., International Business Machines Corp., Gillette Co., Verizon Communications Inc. and the Service Employees International Union. Another 15 have given from $500,000 to $1 million. In 1992, the Democrats did not accept more than $100,000 from any single donor.

Even ardent proponents of tough regulation of campaign contributions tend to jettison their qualms when they get to conventions.

On Monday, Sen. Richard J. Durbin (D-Ill.) emerged from a $19,000 Union Oyster House luncheon given in his honor by the Chicago Board Options Exchange, the Chicago Board of Trade and the Chicago Mercantile Exchange to say accepting the gift was "totally consistent" with his stand on campaign finance. "

I've never attended a $19,000 luncheon given in my honor. Actually I've never had a luncheon given in my honor. I'm in the wrong profession.

Bitchin'

by pissed off patricia

The Lighter Side of Political Conventions.

Yesterday I wrote about what I believed to be a serious topic.  But today is a new day and I can't be an adult every single day.  Here's why.

As a little girl I remember watching the conventions on TV.  That was back in the days when all the TV stations covered all the elections, gavel to gavel.  That was back when the media executives and Americans felt that the election of an American president was a pretty damned important matter and they felt all Americans should be given the opportunity to have as much info as possible before they cast their vote.  Today it's different.  During this campaign period we are in the middle of a war, a war in which Americans are being killed every day.  This war is unlike any other, because the US invaded and occupied a "threatening" country that wasn't threatening anyone.  With the choice of the future leadership of American so critically important today, unless you have cable, you'll only see an abbreviated glimpse of the conventions.  The major TV executives have determined that they will decide how much you'll see of the conventions and when you'll see it.  Today the demands of viewers for a rerun of a situation comedy takes priority over a first hand look at democracy.  Things have changed.

But back to the olden days of totally televised convention coverage.  As I used to watch all the crazy activity on TV and see all the outrageous outfits the delegates would wear, it all reminded this little girl of a grand and glorious party.  All the delegates were laughing and smiling.  During those years, there wasn't a whole lot of laughing and smiling at my house.  But, in an imaginary way I was able to join all those happy people on television and we could all be part of some fantastic fantasy party.  Then to top it all off there were the balloons.  Oh, those colorful, wonderful balloons!  They tumbled from the ceiling in great numbers.  It was a gentle storm of beauty to me.  There were so many balloons, people could pop some of them on purpose.  They had so many that they wouldn't even miss the ones they popped.   I could never imagine having that many balloons to play with.  A poor kid like me was lucky to get one balloon at a time.  Thousands falling upon you must be magical.  I just wanted to run into that room and swim in all those balloons.  I would have entered a contest if the prize had been to play in all those balloons.  That was my version of heaven long ago and in another part of my life.  Some things have changed.

Today, the delegates still wear some pretty "out there" outfits, and I have yet to understand exactly why.  The people still appear to be having a lot of fun and you know what?  I have a feeling that on Thursday night when Senator Kerry accepts the nomination and they release all those balloons that are being held captive in the ceiling of the hall, I’ll continue to believe that those balloons are some of the prettiest things I've ever seen.  I'll see them as a happy and comfortable adult but my childish appreciation for their beauty and my desire to swim in a sea of balloons will be very close by.  I hope that never changes. 

This is the stuff of memories, and everyone can afford memories because they are free for the taking. These are some of the memories that I want to keep with me always.  I want to remember the feeling of being amazed that someone could have so many balloons that they could pop some on purpose.  I no longer need the fantasy friends and parties on TV to make me smile, but they still do.  I no longer need it, but I sure do love it.  I love the magical feeling I get, even to this day, when I see a united party and a sea of beautiful balloons.  I love the lighter side of the conventions. 


Tuesday, July 27

Guess Who Is a Hottie?

Atrios is. His name is Duncan. You can see a picture of him here (Atrios second from left, then President Carter and then Dan Perkins on right (Tom Tomorrow) and here.

Bitchin'

by pissed off patricia

Did we have fun last night or what?  Even with the speeches scrubbed of too much vitriol, the message was there.  We Americans who have been watching have not liked what we've seen over the last four years.  President Carter doesn't like what he's seen happen to the country he led.  President Clinton so eloquently described in detail how and where the wheels came off the country he led.  They didn't fuss and fume. They told us what went wrong, how and why.  They made the points that we wanted them to make, and it was done professionally with educated and managed language.

Al Gore used humor and experience to let us know that he remembers what happened in 2000.  He hasn't forgotten, you haven't forgotten and why should we forget?  If we don't remember and learn from the past, we are doomed to repeat it.  That's sage wisdom that endures.  Only a lazy fool says let's forget about our errors.  That's not what American's have done in the past.  We bank our mistakes and learn from the interest. 

It must be so difficult for the speakers this week to leave their anger behind the curtain.  Anger is the result of hurt, and we're all hurting.  We become frustrated when we hear someone boast that bush makes a decision and sticks by it.   The insanity of that remark is so obvious.  Anyone who does not reevaluate his or her decisions from time to time allows no possibility for improvement.  Anyone who does not accept the possibility that his or her plans may have to be changed as situations change doesn't show determination. They show stubbornness.  Stubbornness is not an altogether admirable trait.  It's one thing to be strong in times of adversity but it's quiet another to be stubborn to the detriment of the cause.  A strong leader is not afraid to change courses.  As regular Americans, we often change courses as our lives progress.  Events require readjustment and change.  A wise man will recognize his mistakes and adjust accordingly.  Only a fool will continue down a path toward destruction to avoid the perception of weakness, when it is so obvious that a change of direction is needed. 

There's a general belief that you don't change presidents during a time of war.  Another way of stating it is that don't change horses mid stream.  I would argue that if the horse you are riding cannot swim but refuses to return to shore while the other horse recognizes the depth of the stream and begins looking for an alternate crossing, the second horse would be the horse of choice for most intelligent riders.  Sure, during the change you may become drenched, but at least you won't drown.  You realized the situation changed and you've made an unscheduled change of plans in order to survive.  If you had stubbornly stayed on the first horse, you might only be remembered as determined by the inscription on your headstone.

While we enjoyed the speeches last night, I think each of us hoped with all our hearts that other Americans would hear the messages, feel the hope, and realize that changing horses mid stream is not a foolish notion. It's a requirement for the rebirth of peace and the future of American democracy.


Free silence zone

From Seattle Pi: "At the Democratic National Convention in Boston, a razor-wired concentration camp -- OK, the designated demonstration area -- is supposed to be a safe harbor for protest. Nonsense. The cage is instead an affront to the First Amendment and to the very essence of the American character."

Well yeah. It's a good thing that the demonstrators at this convention are receiving the same treatment that the demonstrators have been receiving at every protest since Bush took office. It's sucks doesn't it? It finally made the news too. It only took 3 years. Better late than never though.

Good morning America. Nice to see you are waking up.

Shove It Shove It Shove It Shove It Shove It

Wow the Cable TV pundits are apoplectic over Teresa Heinz Kerry's use of the phrase "shove it" towards a reporter. Oh those angry liberals. They must learn to control themselves. BFD. The hypocrisy is just overwhelming these days. A Democrat can't move without being disassembled by the media pundits. These are men going nuts over her comment though.

Women don't mind assertive women in the White House at all. Nancy Reagan, Barbara Bush (Queen Bitch) and Hillary Clinton were ballsy women. Oh I think Teresa Heinz Kerry is going to bring women to the polls on November 2nd. Women aren't going to come out for wimpy Laura (stand up straight and keep your hair out of your eyes, girls) Bush. Women got Bill Clinton elected twice. Women are going to get John Kerry elected. You'll see.

Transvestite Bitch on Wheels

Ann Coulter thinks it's pretty and allies itself with pretty "girls".
USA Today couldn't use Coulter's story because it was full of inaccuracies and dumb opinions, especially the fact that Coulter was trying to pass for a female, a pretty one at that.

"My pretty-girl allies stick out like a sore thumb amongst the corn-fed, no make-up, natural fiber, no-bra needing, sandal-wearing, hirsute, somewhat fragrant hippie-chick pie wagons they call 'women' at the Democratic National Convention."

I wouldn't call what she wrote "reporting". It was more of a nasty bitter jealous rage brought on by an overdose of too many female hormone supplements in a male body. You can read what USA today wouldn't print, and rightly so here.

Monday, July 26

Convention Demonstration Zone is a Dark, Shadowy Place


From Commondreams.org: DNC Protesters get to demonstrate at this lovely fenced in razor wired pen in Boston. It looks like a concentration camp. I hope NYC will afford protesters a nicer place than Boston. The good side of this story is that for once, the right wingers can have a taste of their own medicine.

Meet the Bloggers

Wonder who is blogging at the DNC? Meet the Bloggers is in the WSJ of all places! You can see how cute they are!

Heterosexualism Causes Homosexuals to be Born and Used Book Sales Now a Threat

It never ceases to amaze me why on earth there is such a rash of non-news being reported and why our elected officials are wasting time on issues that don't affect the vast majority of the country.

The obvious non issue of late was the threat of homosexuals getting married thus causing homophobes in politics to worry about box turtle marriage as the tragic result of not doing something about denying gay folks their civil rights. It was also noted by Senator Santorum that nothing is more important than banning gays from marrying in the world today. The logic escaped me, but you must remember that I'm blonde. Would the Defending Marriage Amendment have prevented homosexuals from giving birth to more homosexuals? The last time I checked, you need stuff from both sexes to reproduce, but maybe I missed some new breakthrough in science.

Heterosexuals are really to blame for the gay 'problem', the way I look at it. Perhaps the government should be finding out who these deviant parents are who give birth to homosexuals and stop them at once. Oops, that would point right at our veep and his wife.

Today while perusing the The New York Times , that bastion of liberalism, I read that used books are deemed a threat to book publishers by one writer, yet none of the book publishers can pinpoint what the problem is or if it has an adverse effect on book sales. WTF?

The article starts off like this: "Is Amazon.com becoming the Napster of the book business?"
Here is the 'terrible' problem: "But the Web, particularly sites like Amazon and eBay , have given millions of consumers an easy way to find cheap books - often for under $1 - without paying royalty fees to publishers or authors."

Oh my gawd. How shocking. What about libraries, garage sales, used book stores, giving books to your neighbors/friends? Why throw a perfectly good book in the garbage when you're done with it? If a good book is out of publication, we should just chuck it?

The author goes on a fact finding mission:
"Mass-market publishers are not certain the used-book phenomenon is a problem worth addressing, but others in the industry have already made up their minds."

"We think it's not good for the industry and it has an effect, but we can't measure it," said Paul Aiken, executive director of the Authors Guild

"And Kathryn Blough, the vice president for the Association of American Publishers, said that she "wouldn't jump to the conclusion that used books are eating away at the new-book market." "

"We've not been able to pinpoint a definite effect, but my gut is that absolutely there's an effect," said Dominique Raccah, chief executive of Sourcebooks Inc. "

"We see this as a virtuous cycle. The lower prices of used books allow people to experiment with authors and genres in ways they might not have otherwise. ...We definitely see people who buy at a lower price point come back and buy new books in that same genre," Mr. Greeley from Amazon.com added. "


This is my favorite part:
Ms. Shanley, whose company reported on used books this month in its newsletter, Publishing Trends, said that publishers were beginning to see the effects. "We've asked publishers how much of an issue it is, and the responses are either 'I have so many other problems to deal with,' or 'Yes, it's an issue, but as there are no easy fixes, I can't really focus on it,' '' she said.

Where exactly is the problem? Who is worried about it besides the author? Why is this article in the NY Times wasting space? Why am I writing about it? What about gay used book dealers? Where will this end?

Bitchin'

by pissed off patricia

Have you heard?  Boston is locked down and tied up with security.  We have jets above and bomb sniffing dogs below.  The doors are locked and the windows are barred.  This place is tight as a drum.  It's costing all of us some big bucks.  You knew all this, right?  Okay just imagine how much more security we would have needed if Saddam wasn't in jail.  Exactly!  Remember, bush told us that nabbing Saddam made America safer.  Safer than what? 

We are told to feel safer because "We got him."  Well, I'm thinking that if we had left him the hell alone a bit longer and put all our efforts into being able to say "We got him" in Afghanistan, perhaps, just perhaps, the jets could have stayed in the hangers and the dogs could be snoozing on the front porch.  Sure we would need security at both conventions, but maybe not to the extent we see today.

Bush declared, let there be fear, and fear has rained down upon the country for four years.  He told us to love our neighbor, as we would like to be loved ourselves.  He also told us to keep an eye on our neighbor just in case we thought we saw any funny business going on.  You know, watch for any terrorist hanky panky and such.  So, while you're loving your neighbor, check him out for WMD.  Snuggle up close and frisk that rascal.  Yeah okay, it's gonna be tough to get this chore done, but it's in the name of safety and fear and "terra".  Oh, you know the drill.  Always be alert for reasons to be fearful.  Even when loving thy neighbor, don't forget to be afraid.  Since 9-11, Americans have been forced to wear fear the way Hester Prynne was forced to wear her scarlet "A".

Fear is a funny thing, once you’ve felt it, it's difficult to shake.  It's like an anxiety attack. You know it's an unfounded emotion but just because it's unfounded doesn't mean you can brush it off.  The bush administration has inflicted a case of anxiety on the whole country.  The attacks of 9-11 scared the beejezus out of everyone, and that's a fear that was well founded. But, the reminders by way of alerts, color codes etc. have served as a constant cue for anxiety.  They give us a subtle message telling us that it not only happened, it’s very likely to happen again.  It's almost as if they're saying daily, don't forget to be afraid today.  That sort of national anxiety is not healthy, and apparently it hasn't been very productive either, because Boston is locked down and tied up with security today, just like old Saddam.  Thank goodness the terrorists of 9-11 didn't succeed in taking away our freedom, huh?

Saturday, July 24

Let's Bring Back the Duel

When I first read about the restaffing of the Draft Boards across the country, I was seriously thinking of signing up to work on the board so that I could make sure that those who support this president and his lies war would be sure to fight for it as well. Did I mention that I was a registered Republican only so I could infiltrate the local party to see what they were up to? It was rather corrupt in my county for years and years and years. We have Dems running the show now (the sheeple woke up), so I guess it's safe to change to Independent or Democrat now.

I remember my very wise daddy telling me that there would probably never be any more traditional wars after the Vietnam debacle and nuclear arms proliferation. He also felt that if world leaders would physically participate in war battles as they did in the olden times, we'd probably not be involved in any more wars in this country. He also thought it would be a good idea if our leaders learned boxing, wrestling or karate and would just fight it out with other leaders when they couldn't solve problems diplomatically. I'll buy that.

Or how about a duel? Let them fight to the death amongst themselves... that ought to make those chickenhawks come to peaceful solutions in a snap.

The Nation has a funny (I wish it were true) story called 'Neocon Riots Rock DC' that describes the riots that would ensue, with a twist of course, if a bill passed that would require people who have never been in combat to serve in wars that they start.

The Bush people opposed said bill on "the grounds that it would leave most of the Administration's upper-level positions vacant, including the presidency and vice-presidency, but it was left unattended on President Bush's desk and he inadvertently signed it after deciding it looked too long and too hard to read first."

heh.

It's really not a bad idea to force those who start a war to serve in it. It's only fair.

What Time Is It?

Blatantly stolen from Doomocracy:

What Time Is It?

It's time to take my liberty back, just like it says in the Pledge of Allegiance. The liberty that my Forefathers fought for, and proudly laid its foundation to give freedom and justice to all and give an example for the World to follow in its footsteps.

It's time to take my free speech back as our Constitution states. The right to show my true patriotism to my country and not to the masters of its government without the fear of persecution from the false patriots. Time to make this whole land a "free speech zone" as it says in the First Amendment.

It's time to take back my language, free of distortions, twists and ambiguous misinterpretations. The language in which truth means truth, fair means fair, and lie is not a malfunction.

It's time to take back my free elections, where one vote means one vote and all citizens in good faith can vote without intimidation or disenfranchisement.

It's time to take my values back, the values taught by my ancestors, based on real human virtues like courage, fairness, faith and most of all honesty.

It's time to take my morality back, based on love, social fairness and true faith. Morality dictated by true human virtues and inclusion of all of our human brothers and sisters.

It's time to take my faith back, where the names of God and Jesus will not be used to achieve personal advancement or enrichment. To celebrate their names and follow their teachings without bragging about it.

It's time to take my Government back to its purpose as servant to the people rather than master of the universe.

It's time to reclaim capitalism with its values and free opportunites for all in their quest to work and their pursuit of happiness in a playing-field regulated by free market laws.

It's time to reclaim my Constitution to the full extent of its meaning, and those upholding its interpretation not be given the right to select leaders.

And most of all, it's time to reclaim my Country, that shining house on the hill, respected and revered around the world. The Country that invented and revolutionized democracy and taught the world individual freedom and dignity to live by.

Clinton Did Not Wag The Dog

According to the AP: "The Sept. 11 commission's final report says there's
no evidence
suggesting President Bill Clinton ordered airstrikes on Osama bin Laden targets to distract attention from his affair with Monica Lewinsky."

The commission says strikes may have been too aggressive in Sudan and Afghanistan.

"The report said everyone involved in the decision to strike were aware of Clinton's problems.

"He [Clinton] told them to ignore them," the report said. Berger recalled the president saying to him "that they were going to get crap either way, so they should do the right thing."

While the commission said it found no reason to doubt the motivation of Clinton and his advisers, their report stated: "The failure of the strikes, the 'wag the dog' slur, the intense partisanship of the period and the nature of the al Shifa evidence likely had a cumulative effect on future decisions about the use of force against bin Laden. Berger told us that he did not feel any sense of constraint.""

Ain't That A Kick in the Head?

"Ukraine's pre-election environment has already proven problematic in such key areas as control and manipulation of the media; attempts by national authorities to limit access to international broadcasting, including Radio Liberty; obstacles to free assembly and a free and fair political campaign."


It seems that the US Senate is deeply concerned about Ukraine elections scheduled for October 31st. So concerned that they passed Senate Concurrent Resolution 106 late Thursday night. The bipartisan resolution urges the Government of Ukraine to ensure a democratic, transparent, and fair election process for the presidential election.

"The October elections will be vital in determining Ukraine's course for years to come. This resolution is a concrete expression of the commitment of the U.S. Senate to the Ukrainian people," said Co-Chairman, Senator Ben Nighthorse Campbell (R-Colo.). "Ukraine's elections should be a watershed for the future direction of that country of great potential. Ukrainian authorities need to radically improve the election environment if there is to be hope for these elections to meet OSCE standards. By doing so, they will go a long way in restoring the trust of the citizens of Ukraine and strengthening Ukraine's independence and democracy."

UPDATE: Alert Reader, Richard Cranium, rewrites this article in the comments section. Great job!

Friday, July 23

We need more heterosexual translators

The 9/11 COMMISSION Report says we need a single director of national intelligence. Now Tom Ridge says we don't need more agencies, we need more arab translators: "We don't need more bureaucracy. We need more analysts, we need more Arabic-speaking analysts, and we need a lot more human intelligence,"

B-b-but 9 US Army linguists, including 6 trained to speak Arabic, were fired in 2002 for being Gay at a time when the military was facing a shortage of translators!

Why do we allow homophobes to be in positions of authority?

Who are they more afraid of? Terrorists or homosexuals?


Bitchin'

by pissed off patricia

On the day the 9-11 Commission showed us their findings, on the day we were told we better get shaking if we are to have a chance in hell of preventing another attack, on the day the world saw that we have to shape up our intelligence community - on this very day, the House of Representatives decided the most important and urgent thing they should do is vote to try to bar same sex marriages.  I guess they felt that denying homosexual marriages is our first line of defense in the war on "terra".  Whew, good thing someone thought of that, huh?  The 9-11 Commission forgot all about the role gay marriages would play in putting our country in harm's way.  Imagine if all gay couples had the right and freedom to wed.  Talk about letting our guard down just as Ridge is shouting about something that's about to happen somewhere at sometime.  When things get rough, grab you bible and say, Amen!  Ah, what would Jesus do?  What do you think Jesus would say is our numero uno problem du jour?  Would it be the safety of our country or would it be the dreaded possibility of adult gay Americans committing to love each other and share all of life's lovely gifts?  Those who chat with him often should ask about this.

It took us a long time to make those recognitions and inclusions, but thank goodness we finally did.  Isn't it time we grew a little more and a little faster?  Isn't it time to stop wasting time trying to ban rights?  Isn't it time to once again declare to the world that in America, all Americans are equal and deserve equal rights as well as equal recognition in everything they do?  Owning a bible is fine, but using it to block the way to the full acceptance, acknowledgement, and equal rights of any American is not so fine.   Yes, gay marriages are going to usher in a change in our society, but that's what is so wonderful about America, we change and we grow.  At least we used to.

*******

Ready to have a little fun and perhaps win a prize? 
Go to this site   http://www.danahork.com/ and take "The 2004 Official Political Junkie's Democratic Convention Predictions Quiz".  This will be more fun than bitch slapping the Pretzelnit with a rotten mackerel.  Okay, I agree, nothing would be more fun than that but this is pretty damned close.  You can enter until Thursday, July 29th at 3pm.  So go now.  Life's short, have fun now! 


Thursday, July 22

Media Conglomerates Suck

Turner on media conglomerates: Bust 'em up
AJC.com
07/22/04

"Ted Turner argues that big media companies must be busted up — like the railroad trusts were in the early 20th century and Ma Bell was more recently — in an article he penned for Washington Monthly magazine.

Turner, the founder of CNN and Turner Broadcasting, is still a major shareholder in parent company, Time Warner, one of the largest media companies in the world.

Turner says in the piece that he would never have been able to start his companies in today's climate. Lax regulation has made it impossible for entrepreneurs to succeed, he says.

"This is a fight about freedom—the freedom of independent entrepreneurs to start and run a media business, and the freedom of citizens to get news, information, and entertainment from a wide variety of sources, at least some of which are truly independent and not run by people facing the pressure of quarterly earnings reports," he writes in the article.

Turner winds up the article with a comparison to professional wrestling: "Today the government has cast down its duty, and media competition is less like boxing and more like professional wrestling: The wrestler and the referee are both kicking the guy on the canvas." "


Well I totally agree with Ted but what's he gonna do about it? Can he make the government regulate the media and perhaps think about reviving those pesky anti-trust laws so that regular people have a chance in hell of survival?

The 9/11 Report

I am reading it now. Get it here.

It's not all that shocking. Intelligence failures, foreign policy failures, kill the Americans, etc.

There is nothing about the evil doers "hating our freedoms" so much here in this country as much as them hating our government's 'freedom' to place troops in middle eastern countries like Saudi Arabia.

I'm not up to the part about why Bush sat in the classroom reading a book while all this was happening.

"Although Bin Ladin was determined to strike in the United States, as President Clinton had been told and President Bush was reminded in a Presidential Daily Brief article briefed to him in August 2001, the specific threat information pointed overseas. Numerous precautions were taken overseas.

Domestic agencies were not effectively mobilized. The threat did not receive
national media attention comparable to the millennium alert."


Discuss....

Bitchin'

by pissed off patricia

The 9-11 Commission will reveal its report this morning.  The Pretzelnit has stated that he will look at it and consider the recommendations.  Well, duh! I sure as hell hope he'll not only look at it but actually read it as well.  This report deserves his deepest attention.  He should be waiting with an eager and open mind for the contents of this report.  He should be, but is he?

My gut feeling is that the entire investigation and report are a major pain in his ass.  I think he sees the 9-11 attacks as nothing more than a means to an end.  Thanks to those attacks he hit the jackpot as far as giving his neo buds a means for the war they had always dreamed about.  The fear factor flag was handed to them on that awful September day and they flew it all the way to Iraq.  Many Americans went along for the ride.  Bush's words blurred their vision, and they lost their ability to distinguish the flag of fear from Old Glory.  Both flags looked the same to them.  Many Americans would blindly follow bush straight to hell, and they did. 

The Easter Bunny has nothing on bush when it comes to hiding things.  I'm convinced he would have liked nothing better than to have kept everything regarding pre 9-11 security hidden from public view.  Thank goodness the 9-11 Families screamed their demands for this investigation until someone finally heard them.  Without their voices we wouldn't be hearing what we'll hear today.  Once we gave them our sympathy, and now we should give them our gratitude. 

I'll have the salad please...


FDA Report- BSE Interim Final Rule and Proposed Rule:
"FDA'S New Interim Final Rule Prohibiting Use of Certain Cattle Materials that May Carry the Risk of Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy (BSE) (Also Known as 'Mad Cow Disease') in Human Foods and Cosmetics

"Specified risk materials from cattle over 30 months are:
brain
skull
eyes
trigeminal ganglia
spinal cord
vertebral column (excluding the vertebrae of the tail, the transverse processes of the thoracic and lumbar vertebrae, and the wings of the sacrum)
dorsal root ganglia.

"Specified risk materials from cattle of any age are the
tonsils and distal ileum of the small intestine.

"What products are covered by the interim final rule?
All FDA-regulated human food and cosmetics, including:
Dietary supplements and dietary ingredients
Infant formula
Canned and frozen foods
Bakery goods, snack food, and candy (including chewing gum)
Food ingredients, including GRAS substances
Food additives, including food-contact substances
Cosmetics and cosmetic ingredients."


Ewww. Consumers run a slight risk in acquiring the human version of mad cow disease if they apply cosmetics tainted with bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) to open cuts.
 
The FDA notes that the primary path of human exposure to BSE is through ingesting beef, and other food, from cattle, but points out that small doses of the infectious prions that cause mad cow disease can be found in cosmetics. Well those prions are in a whole lot of places including dental instruments and I'm not sure they know how many prions you need to actually get the human form of Mad Cow Disease or CJD. People are dying from it in this country though. 28 states don't report it. You need an autopsy to prove that you had it. Who knows what's really going on. At least the FDA is sort of getting on the stick.

More news concerning Creutzfeld-Jakob Disease (CJD), Alzheimers, Prions and Mad Cow at Mad Cow - CJD.

More news at MeatAMI.com, the online resource for the meat and poultry community.

Wednesday, July 21

Still Not Enough Armor for Troops

You've gotta read this: Another Failure to Keep Faith With America's Military: Why Won't Jeb Bush Pressure the President to Deliver Bulletproof Vests to Soldiers in Iraq? "More than 1,300 bulletproof vests collected by the Marion County Sheriff's Office for shipment to the Ocala-based 351st Military Police Company remain stored in the unit's Ocala headquarters -10 days after they were delivered for shipment to Iraq. How long the body armor continues to sit there remains to be seen."

I don't know shit about war, but if I were the preznit and I decided to invade a country I would sure as hell make sure that I had enough troops and enough body armor BEFORE we went in. People are chipping in and donating vests still! What happened to the money alloted for this? How long are people going to let this administration slide?

If You Live Here, You Won't Be a Bit Surprised

From the Brennan Center for Justice:
NEW REPORT: NEW YORK’S LEGISLATIVE PROCESS MOST DYSFUNCTIONAL IN NATION

"Gerald Benjamin, Dean of the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences and Distinguished Professor of Political Science at SUNY New Paltz, said: "This is an extraordinary report for four reasons.
First, more than any study of the New York legislature I have ever seen, it systematically documents the non-democratic nature of the legislative process in New York.
Second, it demonstrates through rigorous comparison with other states that New York's failures are sometimes unique and always atypical.
Third, it makes concrete proposals that, if adopted, will truly achieve fundamental improvement of our state's legislative process.
Finally, its proposals are relatively easily achievable: they may be made through rules changes – changes that a majority in each house may adopt without coming into agreement with a majority in the other, and without gubernatorial action.""

Typical New York, always atypical.

"I'm a war president. I make decisions here in the Oval Office in foreign policy matters with war on my mind."
-G.W. Bush on Meet the Press, Sunday, February 8, 2004

"Nobody wants to be the 'war president. I want to be the 'peace president."
-G.W. Bush at Cedar Rapida, Iowa Tuesday, July 20, 2004

So the disrupters weren't ejected from the Ronstadt concert? Linda Was.

If you are an entertainer or even a regular citizen for that matter, and you are pro-Bush then you are allowed to express your political views in public. You are lauded for it by the media and Americans. You are a true patriot. You can put Bush/Cheney bumper stickers on your car and not have to worry that your car will get keyed or that the tires will be slashed as would happen to you if you had Kerry/Edwards on your car. How many of my oh so gentle readers have keyed cars with Bush stickers on them? Of course not. We are not animals. We respect others property.

If you are against the war, you can't even put a billboard in Times Square, NYC which is owned by Clear Channel because they are Bushites and yet they claim that picture of a bomb will upset the populace. A cartoon image of a bomb is disturbing to New Yorkers? I thought we were attacked by planes? Show me an enlarged picture of a plane coming at me on a billboard and I might be disturbed, thank you.

Every time I turn on the TV, I am bombarded with pro-war, pro-Bush sentiment. I've been to events where everyone was rah rah, Go America, Go Bush, Hate Michael Moore, etc. Dissenters didn't tear up the event though. If my favorite singer in the world dedicated a song to Karl Rove or Rush Limbaugh, I'd probably decide there and then that this person was no longer my favorite singer and I would exit the premises. Would I go bonkers over a singer who expressed a political view that was different from mine? No. I was raised by staunch Republicans and yet I wasn't raised to destroy other peoples property or act violently unless my life was in danger (as long as I was wearing a slip).

Speaking as a performer, I'd be pissed off if I was told I had to just sing and keep my mouth shut between songs. If no one liked it, then tough and I wouldn't play there. Period. Since when are artists expected to conform to governmental standards? When did we become the Soviet Union?

Don't give me any lip, you. Unless we are performing in a scripted event such as a play or movie, then we are free to do our art... at least we were under Clinton.

So there were 4500 people at the Aladdin show where Linda Ronstadt performed in Las Vegas. It seems Linda is getting a bit feisty now (her concerts were generally rather boring in the past) and she sang a song dedicated to Michael Moore: Desperado, which happens to be one of my all time favorite songs on earth. About 100 people out of the 4500 were so incensed by her pro-Moore stance that they threw their drinks, tore down posters and asked for their money back. You would think she was dedicating the song to Hitler! They caused such a scene and were so disruptive that the owner of the Aladdin stopped the show and took her off stage and escorted her out of the casino according to some reports.

Why weren't the nasty, disruptive people removed so that the rest of the audience would be able to enjoy my favorite song? If I was there I would be so pissed that my favorite song was interrupted that I would demand my money back and stick my tongue out at the owner of the place (although mom would surely roll in her grave.)

So what's my point? Pro-Bush people are getting meaner and uglier by the day. They are enraged, angry and volatile. Just a few of them can ruin a party, a blog or a yahoo group. They cannot explain why they are angry, they just know they are because they are programmed to be mad as hell by the media pundits.

I am mad as hell too. I am going to attend every peaceful protest I can find. I will continue to write letters to express my dissent to the media everyday who continue to hide important stories with smokescreens. I will continue to make phone calls to TV stations when I see pundits lie in their teeth. I will continue to annoy those who are in the mainstream and spew lies. I won't keep my mouth shut... especially not between songs in my set.

Anyone?

Bitchin'

by pissed off patricia

The War That Bush Might Win is The One He Shouldn't

In every poll I've seen, only one percent of Americans are concerned about the environment.  I find that strange since the environmental problems in this country effect one hundred percent of Americans.

I know the economy and healthcare concerns are terribly important now, but if we don't have clean air and clean water we'll need even more healthcare, and that will affect the economy.  Without a healthy environment we cannot have healthy Americans, and that would be costly.

Concern about our environment is not a luxury.  It isn't as though we can just push environmental problems aside until we have nothing better to do but deal with them.  To say that we'll deal with the environment later is not a plan, it's an excuse for not multi-tasking American problems.  As the bush administration has been hell bent on deforestation, releasing the government's grip on industrial polluters and working feverishly to dismantle the Endangered Species List, apparently only one percent of Americans have cared.  That's not enough to make a difference. 

To anyone who has wondered how much worse four more years of the bush administration might be, please remember that bush has been at war with Mother Nature for four long years and with only one percent of Americans fighting on Her side, I'm not sure She can hold on for four more years.  If Mother Nature is forced to defend herself for four more years against the bush administration, there's a horrible possibility that bush may have found a war he can actually win.  That would be a victory that one hundred percent of Americans can ill afford.


Now I'm Bitchin'

by BlondeSense/Liz

How many of you have wondered what happened to your friends and relatives (whom you thought were pretty sane at one time) once they became rabid Bush supporters? Did they turn nuts and irrational? Do they just make blanket statements with nothing to back it up and get angry at you or anyone who asks "why" or "how did you reach that conclusion"? Do they threaten violence or warn you that you had better apologize to them or soldiers or any 3rd person? Do they resort to name calling or accuse you of insulting them when you did nothing of the sort?

Does it occur to anyone that the reason a whole lot of people are dissenting (and not just lefties) is perhaps that maybe things are not so good?

I made a list of all the people I know who are supportive of the present regime. I separated them into groups by their philosophy:

1. "I hated Clinton so now I like Bush",
These are the lifelong Republicans I know who don't follow the news all that much. They are not mean or anything. They hated Clinton because he lied and because he was a "Democrat" even though he acted like a Republican but they don't get it.

2. "Bush is great and he knows what he is doing",
Again, people who don't follow the news too much except for catching a headline here or there. They just don't want to hear about Kerry because he is so "liberal". They don't know what a liberal is except that it has something to do with baby killing and communism.

3. "Bush is only human and doing the best he can"
Pussies who are top of the headlines mostly but don't really delve much further than that or connect dots. They are mostly exasperating, illogical and extremely naive.

4. "You liberal idiots who don't support Bush don't know what you're talking about because people are dying for YOUR liberty and freedom right now in Iraq and Michael Moore is a traitor and his movie is a lie, the Iraqis deserve what they get and you are supposed to support your president, you pinko commie pieces of slime."
The majority of folks I know who are into attacking me or so called "liberals" without any factual evidence are generally ex-substance abusers, abusees, victims of religion related injuries and former juvenile delinquents. Some of the ones I know are heavy drinkers and should become ex-drinkers. The angrier they are, the more psychological issues they have and childhood traumas they have been through. I normally used to get along with them ok until I mentioned that I thought Bush was stupid and then changed it to evil. They need to be charged up, high on adrenaline, angry at something and have an enormous need to be righteous to make up for whatever shortcomings they have had in the past. If the media identifies an enemy, they are all over it like flies on shit. One more thing, very few of the rabid people in this category I know have education beyond high school and have not learned critical thinking. The ones who did get some college were high the whole time. Some served in the military.

That's just an informal analysis of my personal experiences lately. Many, if not most of my Republican friends are against this administration, so I wasn't making a blanket statement against Republicans (before anyone flames me). I also have plenty of friends and acquaintances who did serve in the military and are quite progressive. I am avoiding contact with #4's and don't bother too much with #3's for mental health reasons.

The avid Bush supporters hate the media and call it liberal biased media. And if so, where are they getting their "groupthink" opinions from anyway? If they have all just about the same opinion and the same non-arguments, then they must be getting it from somewhere. Maybe they are getting their news from those opinion guys on TV and radio? Why am I getting yelled at for Jon Stewart, Michael Moore and Air America when the right wingers have the TV news, TV news pundits and most talk radio supporting their cause? Even most local newspapers are very selective about what news they print. If anyone should be really really pissed off, it should be me.

If they are saying the media is liberal and we are saying it's corporate and both of us don't trust it then why are we at odds with each other? Why do they get all upset when we dissect news stories as bogus or smokescreens and then they dismiss our insight? Why do they defend the very news that they say is "liberal"?

I didn't agree with everything in F911. I don't agree with every progressive or liberal view. Liberals and progressives don't all have the same opinion. That's probably what pisses off the angry ones: people who think and dare to be wrong or even change their opinion if new information comes to light. Staying the steady course really isn't all that smart is it?

You don't have to agree with me. I just felt like writing this all down for future reference.

Which political Warrior are you?

Tuesday, July 20

Bitchin'

by pissed off patricia

 
UNCLE SAM OFFERS PERKS TO MAKE YOUR PERKS PERKIER!
 
According to Karen Schaler of the New Yorker magazine, you can join the Army and you and your family can receive a surgical  makeover for free.  Of course that might not be a bad idea after your ass has been shot off in this insane war but a war injury is not a requirement for a makeover.  Think about it folks, your tax dollars are not only going to build buildings in Iraq, they are also going toward building boobies in the USA.  Don't believe me?  Read it for yourself.  Seems we have a new recruiting tool and it will nip and tuck you if you'll just sign your name on the dotted war-line in the sand.  I wonder if the guys can have a new tool too?

Great title she gave her story.  It's titled, "Chest Out, Stomach In--All That You Can Be"
Here's a paragraph that might get you interested:  "A Defense Department spokeswoman confirmed the existence of the plastic-surgery benefit. According to the Army, between 2000 and 2003 its doctors performed four hundred and ninety-six breast enlargements and a thousand three hundred and sixty-one liposuction surgeries on soldiers and their dependents. In the first three months of 2004, it performed sixty breast enhancements and two hundred and thirty-one liposuctions."
-The New Yorker

Monday, July 19

From the Eeeeeewwwwwwww Factor



Is Sean Hannity a Sex Symbol?

From Steve Young via Atrios: "Faced with stiff competition from the likes of Matt Lauer, Brian Williams, Peter Jennings, Tom Brokaw and Dan Rather (among others), Sean Hannity was selected by Playgirl magazine readers as TV's Sexiest Newscaster.

...But one must be curious about what the devout, aww-shucks-modest Hannity thinks about the possibility of being the naked centerfold that arouses Playgirl's female readers. More importantly, how does Sean feel about the large percentage of Playgirl fans who are gay men who make the magazine their go-to-sleep-sufficiently-gratified night table reader? Not that there's anything wrong with that -- after all, Log Cabin Republican have their needs too."

Rather than comment on this story, I felt compelled to illustrate it via photoshop. Pictures say so much more than words.

Orwell Rolls in his Grave

From Democrats.com:
"Robert Kane Pappas' 'Orwell Rolls In His Grave' is the consummate critical examination of the Fourth Estate, once the bastion of American democracy. Asking whether America has entered an Orwellian world of doublespeak where outright lies can pass for the truth, Pappas explores what the media doesn't talk about: itself. Meticulously tracing the process by which media has distorted and often dismissed actual news events, Pappas presents a riveting and eloquent mix of media professionals and leading intellectual voices on the media." Opening Friday 7/23 in NYC (Angelika) and 7/30 in D.C. and L.A. Go on opening night to make sure it reaches more theaters! http://orwellrollsinhisgrave.com"

This looks like an important movie since the media is what covered up the big lies all along.

Liberal?

I don't post all that much about Kerry and Edwards. I'm not excited about this election. I just want Bush out because of the Iraq debacle, the stolen election of 2000 and he failed us miserably on 9/11 (before and after). I don't think Kerry/Edwards are all that liberal. I am a staunch moderate and Kerry/Edwards are to the right of me. I don't agree with their war or Israel politics. That doesn't make me a bonafide leftie for God's sake.

Why are the Republicans going nuts over these guys when they are hardly liberal? If they are described as leftists by the media, what does that make me? I am hardly a commie. I do believe in socialized health care and good education for everyone because of my Christian upbringing. Big deal. That makes me an evil commie? C'mon.

So what are Kerry/Edwards going to change that is freaking out the Republicans if Bush loses?

And in local news....

Island Life

Alfonse D'Amato, 66, who started out politics here on LI, then became US Senator for NY but lost out when he spent too much time investigating Clinton in his last bid for re-election to Chuck Schumer and now looks somewhat like a corpse in most pictures who recently built a house by the ocean just south of me that is so tall that neighbors complained his house was blocking their view and he had to take a couple of feet off the top of it, just married a 38 year old attorney, Katuria Elizabeth Smith (no relation to moi) here on Long Island over the weekend. There was an all star guest list with "-R's" next to their names. "It's clear that they are madly in love with each other," Gov. George Pataki said.

Yes, I am sure it's very clear. Well actually I am being sarcastic. D'Amato always looks like he's in shock when he's with his new lady.

Sunday, July 18

Protest the Protest

Dudes, check this out. These guys are going to protest the protesters at the RNC. Read their mission below. It's ass backwards because they think everyone who opposed the war and Bush is a leftist. Oh boy. They think that the media is liberal too! Where do they get this stuff? What about the rest of us stuck in the middle who just want our country back from the neocons?

ProtestWarrior.com - mission: "

War IS an ugly thing, but as long as nations and leaders exist that detest freedom, sometimes it is the only way to secure a lasting peace. Most leftist anti-war protesters and pundits don't understand this. They state that this use of force is always unnecessary -- that war, ANY war, is never good. Some of them, born into the luxury of American freedom, believe that liberty can exist passively, that somehow the world's natural state will always settle into utopian harmony. Others, in an attempt to absolve themselves from the unearned guilt they harbor living in a nation of prosperity and wealth, try to buy morality on the cheap by pronouncing themselves for the 'good'. To them, the derivation of the 'good' is based on a simple, yet peculiar standard: the powerful and competent are wicked, while the feeble and impotent are innocent - regardless of the context. That is why they defend Iraq instead of America, and the Palestinian 'resistance' instead of Israel.

These leftists usually carry the loudest megaphones. And left unchallenged, their voices are heard disproportionately, demoralizing our troops, and emboldening dictators around the world - dictators who dream of the day the 'Great Satan' disappears from the face of the earth.

However, their self-righteous messages go silent quickly when the truth of history and reality is thrown back in their face. It's time to turn up the juice on OUR megaphones, as we will never keep our supreme values of liberty and justice without the will to fight for them."

Fear of Flying

We've all heard stories about little old ladies with walkers being taken aside at airports and screened. We've heard of kids having to take their shoes off at check points in the airports. We've heard of Arab men strolling right through the screening areas of airports. We don't want to insult Arabs by checking them all out, especially if a whole bunch of them board a flight with one way tickets or anything. The U.S. is very politically correct isn't it? On the other hand, we know that John AshKKKroft has been pursuing our most private details ad nauseum and the screeners will take a blonde haired blue eyed family and delay them for hours going through their luggage with a fine tooth comb and other baggage won't even be looked at. The system stinks. There are abuses in the Computer Assisted Passenger Pre-Screening System too.

When asked Wednesday whether the Computer Assisted Passenger Pre-Screening System II (CAPPS II) was dead, Homeland Security Secretary Tom Ridge jokingly pretended to put a stake in its heart and said, "Yes". Six of the 10 largest airlines are known to have given data to the government secretly. The TSA or its contractors may have violated the Privacy Act, which prohibits the government from compiling secret databases on Americans. Officials could face civil and criminal penalties. USA Today is happy about less-intrusive flier screening. "The government finally acknowledged this week what many travelers, airlines, lawmakers and privacy advocates had been telling it for more than a year. A plan to snoop into the lives of all airline passengers to determine whether they pose a terrorism risk is too intrusive to fly."

The Twin Cities then set up a plan for frequent fliers where they can set up in advance a background check with a fingerprint or iris scan so that they can speedily get through security screening. In other words, they can give up their privacy in order to board faster.

But it seems that on top of all of this that the screeners aren't even doing their jobs anyway. Mother Jones reports that 2 men who work for the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) lost their jobs as security trainers after complaining that screeners weren't inspecting luggage properly, there aren't enough screeners and on busy days, bags are barely screened at all. "They have filed for federal whistleblower protection status, making them 2 of 45 former TSA employees who have claimed wrongful termination to the U.S. Office of Special Counsel. Both say they want to honor the oath they took when starting at TSA—that safety would be their top priority."

Meanwhile the president keeps telling us we are so safe since we bombed the sh-t out of Baghdad yet we should be prepared for al Qaida to attack us. Osama "he's not my concern" bin Laden is up to no good again and doesn't want Bush to win the election.

This story Terror in the Skies, Again? is told by a woman who flew from Detroit to LA on June 29 with 14 middle eastern men who spent most of the flight in the lavatories with their bags, returning to their seats without their bags, getting up, going back to the lavatories, meeting in the back of the plane all while nothing was done by anyone on the plane. She recounts her terror on the flight. Yes the flight was met in LA by FBI agents and there were Federal Air Marshalls on the flight she later found out. The US Marshalls told the woman afterwards that they could not intervene during the flight unless something happened. you mean unless a bomb exploded? She later found this article in the Observer: "Terrorist bid to build bombs in mid-flight: Intelligence reveals dry runs of new threat to blow up airliners"

It turns out due to rules against discrimination, they can't screen more than 2 Arab males. So these Arab "musicians" who boarded the plane didn't have their instrument bags looked at. Nice. Two days after the harrowing flight however, a new directive was issued: "The U.S. Transportation and Security Administration has issued a new directive which demands pilots make a pre-flight announcement banning passengers from congregating in aisles and outside the plane's toilets. The directive also orders flight attendants to check the toilets every two hours for suspicious packages."

Supposedly nothing was found to be fishy on that flight. Well that is what they told the woman.

To be continued....

Bush Has Private Meeting With Amish

"President Bush met privately with a group of Old Order Amish during his visit to Lancaster County last Friday. He discussed their farms and their hats and his religion. He asked them to vote for him in November. The Amish told the president that not all members of the church vote but they would pray for him. Bush had tears in his eyes when he replied. He said the president needs their prayers.

..."When the Amish were “found not to be a serious threat to national security,’’ they were allowed inside the office area of Lapp Electric and waited about 30 minutes for the president to appear.

..."Bush said he had never met any Amish before and was curious about why the men were wearing straw hats rather than black wool hats. The Amish explained that they wear cooler straw in summer. Bush tried on a hat.

"...“One of the young girls wanted to give Bush a whoopie pie cookie,’’ Stoltzfus says. “Bush declined it. The Secret Service man took it, as presidents aren’t supposed to eat untested food.’’

..."At the end of the session, Bush reportedly told the group, “I trust God speaks through me. Without that, I couldn’t do my job.’’ "
By Jack Brubaker
Lancaster New Era

Conspiracy Du Jour

Here's that story again:
Terrorism and the Election
No, do not expect an election cancellation but be prepared for a terrorist "event" during the election. That is what the Bush White House and their media prostitutes are spinning.

Here’s the scenario we must be all be prepared for:

If the pre-election internal tracking polls and public opinion polls show the Kerry-Edwards ticket leading in key battleground states, the Bush team will begin to implement their plan to announce an imminent terrorist alert for the West Coast for November 2 sometime during the mid afternoon Pacific Standard Time. At 2:00 PST, the polls in Kentucky and Indiana will be one hour from closing (5:00 PM EST – the polls close in Indiana and Kentucky at 6:00 PM EST). Exit polls in both states will be known to the Bush people by that time and if Kentucky (not likely Indiana) looks too close to call or leaning to Kerry-Edwards, the California plan will be implemented. A Bush problem in Kentucky at 6:00 PM EST would mean that problems could be expected in neighboring states and that plans to declare a state of emergency in California would begin in earnest at 3:00 PM PST.

...Without a doubt, many Democratic voters might simply opt to pick their kids up from day care centers or relatives and then go home without voting. These would tend to be the lower and middle income Californians and the Democratic base. The affluent voters in California who vote Republicans and can easily vote early (and be late for work) or have the option of leaving work at any time during the day to vote will have likely already cast their ballots. Therefore, the recipe of a White House-induced California terrorist alert and a low Democratic turnout could toss 54 electoral votes into Bush’s lap, especially if the scare tactics affect the turnout in such urban and typically pro-Democratic vote-rich areas as Los Angeles, the San Francisco Bay Area, and Sacramento.

oy vay.

CIA convinced terrorists planning 'something big'.

From ABC News Online:

"CIA acting director John McLaughlin says warnings that terrorists are plotting "something big" against the United States are based on "very, very solid" information.

...Asked whether Americans should cancel vacation plans or stay away from Boston and New York during the conventions, Mr McLaughlin said people should go about their business."

I'm having deja vu all over again. Something big is going to happen but I should go shopping anyway. Most New Yorkers will be out of town for the convention simply because of the congestion and all those dang tourists who look up rather than straight ahead when they are walking on the streets. They haven't figured out where to allow the protesters to go either. Hopefully a safe location... just in case.

Saturday, July 17

Martha, My Dear

Martha was on with Bawbwa last night. Why does Barbara Walters insist on making her interviewees cry? That is soooooooo 1970's. I watched some of it. Barbara really went too far. I don't want to talk about it. Martha was so framed. I'm sorry. I used to be a trader on Wall St. This was nothing to go to jail about. What are we gonna throw people in jail for lying? I'd rather see Ken Lay in jail, thank you.

Barbara asked Martha about her pocketbook that supposedly cost $6000. Then I started crying. Oy vay. Why are we talking about the shite that Faux News brings up? Well anyway, it turns out that Martha bought the bag several years ago after her company started to make it big. She said she didn't pay anywhere near $6000 for the bag and she said it's her only bag. I believe her. You should too.

You can have a good bag forever if you take good care of it. Martha's bag was so practical too. It goes with everything except maybe formal wear. Would the media give me a f-cking break already? If Martha wants 6 $50,000 bags, so the hell what? She's worth millions. $50,000 is a drop in the bucket. It's all relative.

Martha taught women to re-use and recycle on her TV show. That is NOT a bad thing at all. As a matter of fact many families across America are struggling. Many of the projects on her show actually taught women to rise up, even in their low income status and make their environment a little bit nicer, something that they could be proud of and how to make do with what you have and re-use things, make vinegar out of wine, etc etc. She taught simple gardening skills. She taught people who don't have the money to go to gardening centers for more plants how to divide the roots of existing plants or start a new plant from a cutting. I like to do that stuff even if I can afford to buy new plants. She taught regular people how to prune the garden. She taught you how to make a wreath for your door out of dried up plants, weeds and berries harvested in late fall. She taught people how to appreciate simple things whether or not they had money. She taught women how to stencil a pretty design on their front entrance if they only had plain wood or cement floors. She has awesome cookie recipes. Of course I am not going to gild my cookies with edible gold leaf. I don't have the time and I'm too hungry. But Martha has to appeal to some uppity babes too.

Her products at KMart are superior. They are affordable and very attractive. I checked them out and was very impressed with the quality and design. Martha Stewart appealed to women across the board. Those who hated her were just jealous or hung up or something. I wasn't threatened by Martha. I was kind of like her before I ever heard of her anyway. (Something I designed was in Better Homes and Gardens.) She broke down barriers. She made people care about making their homes, their neighborhoods, a nicer place to live in. Her show wasn't on cable. It was accessible to anyone with a television. She made people feel good about themselves. Maybe after watching a segment on her show some person got up and put some flowers in a vase or tried a new recipe and then was complimented for their effort. Stuff like that makes people feel good. If some women got obsessed with Martha, that is their own obsessive compulsive problem, not Martha's.

With all the poverty, debt, misery and joblessness in this country... it's good to have some recycling skills and to keep ones dignity in the face of adversity. Put a couple of roadside flowers in a jar on the window. It's a good thing.

The REAL Assault on American Marriage

From Democrats.com: 10 Top Ways Bush & the NeoCons have Undermined Marriage

(this is a good article. I shortened it for this blog)

"Here 10 top ways Bush & Co. have assaulted "a union between a man and woman. By Cheryl Seal
1. Failure to create jobs
2. Consistently opposing legislation that would make healthcare affordable and guaranteed to families, regardless of finances
3. Consistently opposing efforts to raise the minimum wage and insure adequate worker benefits.
4. Consistently opposing efforts to insure affordable housing
5. Reviving the "might is right" macho model and patriarchal ideas, along with the promotion of a divisive social environment where differences and dissent are not tolerated
6. Systematic undermining of minorities, especially African Americans.
7. Unfair and unpredictable extension of soldier tours.
8. Grievous injuries and PTSD
9. Trying to overturn a women's right to choose
10. Abstinence only sex education"

The details are in the complete article. I wrote to the White House asking Mr Bush exactly HOW gay marriage will undermine families. They keep saying it will but I fail to see the logic. Something about box turtles, polygamy... WTF? I suppose allowing beastiality with box turtles is something that shouldn't be allowed.. but a constitutional amendment? Polygamy? Only if I can have a stud farm.

As I understand the government, I believe that States have rights and are supposed to handle local stuff. Bush has enough crap on his hands with international affairs. He ought to stick to that and leave the States to their own local issues.

International Media Bias Meetup Day

International Media Bias Meetup Day -- Join other Media Bias Debaters: "Meetup with other local people who are interested in a discussion about the atest media bias"

This looks interesting. 4 People signed up near me. Maybe we can make this happen across the country. Check it out

Friday, July 16

Bitchin'

by pissed off patricia

Knowledge is Expensive and the Lack of it is Costly

In order to stay well informed in today's world you need four things.  You need a computer, time, money and ability. You need the complete package.  But for many Americans information and truth have become luxuries that they can't afford.  Even time has become a luxury for many.  Perhaps that's why they refer to the informed as "elitist".  Elite refers to the financial status of the informed, because being informed today requires so much time and costs so much.  Knowledge is in many ways a luxury.  Those unable to afford the time and money to search for knowledge may well resent those who can.  Rather than be embarrassed by their lack of information as a result of their financial status, they defensively argue using their religion as the last word in everything.  They may not be able to afford a family computer but they have a family bible. 

Please think for just a second about how little you would know about what is actually going on in our country if you didn't have the luxury of owning your computer and the luxury of being financially able to purchase books.  Without these two factors you would have to rely solely on TV news and newspapers.  Think about how long it has taken news you found on the internet to finally make it to the public media.  Some stories never seem to make it at all.  And, many that do are labeled and dismissed as "liberal media" stories.

Most of us have read the flood of books that have been published this year (e.g., John Dean's, Paul O'Neill's etc.).  Also, most of us keep up on current events by checking out our favorite news clues sites on the internet.  But think about the financially strapped families who are trying to raise a couple of kids.  Many of these folks can't afford to plop down twenty-five to thirty-five dollars a week to read the most current books.  They may not even be able to afford the time to read books or browse the web searching out news.  In today's economy with so many Americans out of work they may not even be able to afford a computer or internet access. 

Sure, anyone can apply for a library card and check out these books, but how many copies of John Dean's book do you think you might find in the libraries of small rural towns?  Some of the best books that you and I have read, we first discovered on the internet. 

There's one more group of Americans we must consider who are unable to acquire the truth.  According to some reports, over twenty-five million Americans are functionally illiterate.  That's a lot of people. 

If you add that number to the number of Americans who cannot afford the aforementioned educational luxuries, which many of us take for granted, you realize why so many believe what they are told and not what they discover for themselves.   Some of these categories will overlap but some will not.  For example, some families may be able to afford books, but not a computer.  But remember, to be informed you need the entire package of computer, time, money and ability.  Perhaps, if we could calculate the number of Americans who can't afford to buy books almost weekly, the number of Americans who cannot afford internet access, plus those who cannot afford to spend time browsing the net, and the over twenty-five million who cannot read, we might be able to understand why about half the country continues to support bush.  They simply can't afford or are not able to access the truth.  Come November, that could be very costly for our country.

Young Nudists Summer Plans Stripped

Parents Must Be Present at Nudist Camp for Youths: "Judge Williams upheld a new Virginia law requiring that campers be accompanied by a parent or grandparent. An eyeful of naked Mom or Dad, he suggested, is a fair price for admission to nudist camp.

'The presence of a family member would in no way interfere with the child's participation in events,' he said, ruling from the bench."

The ACLU is getting in on the action because 24 broken hearted kids are not able to attend summer camp because their parents simply cannot attend camp with their children due to other commitments.

Generally you send your kids to camp so that you can do other stuff so I can sort of see where this is a problem.

I'm laughing inside thinking of my son going to a nudist camp. He'd be horrified. He only agreed to go to vacation Bible Camp at a local church for 1 week a summer for 4 hours a day with the neighborhood kids. That's all the break I ever got. sigh. ( I used to call it "The Church of I'm Saved and You're Not" or "Bible Gun Camp". He liked it though. He grew up normal.

Things The Preznit Is Not

Assertations made by the President since 1997 from Harpers:

I’m not a statistician.

I’m not a numbers-cruncher.

I’m not very analytical.

I’m not a lawyer.

I’m not a doctor.

I’m not a poet.

I’m not a textbook player.

I’m not an emailer.

I’m not an Iraqi citizen.

I’m not a tree, I’m a Bush.

read the rest

Florida Woman Has Balls

(in addition to Pissed Off Patricia)

U.S. Congresswoman Corrine Brown who represents Central Florida wanted the UN to monitor the 2004 election. The UN turned her down but 55 European countries offered to help. She spoke to local news,WFTV.com: "Let me tell you something. The country looks weak. We don't have credibility around the world. We're talking about going to Iraq and other places to make sure they got democracy, and the world questions our democracy....Do you know what the rest of the world thinks of us? Who are we to go around and tell other people this is how you should run your election when you can't get it right here?"

My, she is spunky. I like her. Smart too. Critical thinker.

She had a >nice battle in the House too after Rep. Steve Buyer, R-Ind requested that the UN stay out of the US elections.

Congresswoman Brown retorted, "I come from Florida, where you and others participated in what I call the United States coup d'etat. We need to make sure it doesn't happen again," Brown said. "Over and over again after the election when you stole the election, you came back here and said, 'Get over it.' No, we're not going to get over it. And we want verification from the world."

Do you not love her?

Then the House got mad at her and said it was against the rules to use the word "Stole" when it comes to an election. So they voted to strike that from the record. The Republican-run House voted 219-187 along party lines to strike her words.

Well it made the news in a lot of places anyway. Not bad!

PS. Found this too. Congressman Kendrick Meek Compares Gov. Bush's Role In 2000 Recount To bin Laden's Hiding: "'The governor [Jeb Bush] was like bin Laden after the 2000 election. No one could find him when they had issues as it relates to so many African-American votes that were left on the floor in many supervisor of elections offices throughout the state."