Monday, March 27, 2006

Clarion Ledger letter of the day - March 27, 2006

A variation today. The C/L online poll asks whether the media are accurately portraying the Iraq Murder. Well, once again, the readers of the C/L have bought the silly, unfounded "the media are losing the war" propaganda from the Republican slime machine. A full 82% voted that the media were not accurately portraying the war. Gee whiz. Blaming the media for the war in Iraq is about like blaming your buddy for telling you your girl is fooling around on ya. It's not HIS fault, ya know. But I guess there's a segment of the population that will just lap up, without question, whatever the current GOP talking points are. The "media" is the scapegoat of the moment so follow away they will.

Lara Logan, CBS news correspondent, responding to a GOP talking point regurgitated by Howard "Time Warner/Washington Post" Kurst, summed it up well:

KURTZ: But critics would say, well, no wonder people back home think things are falling apart because we get this steady drumbeat of negativity from the correspondents there.

LOGAN: Well, who says things aren't falling apart in Iraq? I mean, what you didn't see on your screens this week was all the unidentified bodies that have been turning up, all the allegations here of militias that are really controlling the security forces.

What about all the American soldiers that died this week that you didn't see on our screens? I mean, we've reported on reconstruction stories over and over again…I mean, I really resent the fact that people say that we're not reflecting the true picture here. That's totally unfair and it's really unfounded.

...Our own editors back in New York are asking us the same things. They read the same comments. You know, are there positive stories? Can't you find them? You don't think that I haven't been to the U.S. military and the State Department and the embassy and asked them over and over again, let's see the good stories, show us some of the good things that are going on? Oh, sorry, we can't take to you that school project, because if you put that on TV, they're going to be attacked about, the teachers are going to be killed, the children might be victims of attack.

I mean, security dominates every single thing that happens in this country….So how it is that security issues should not then dominate the media coverage coming out of here?

On conservative radio host Laura Ingraham's recent statement that journalists need to do less "reporting from hotel balconies" in Iraq, LOGAN said: I think it's outrageous. I mean, Laura Ingraham should come to Iraq and not be talking about what journalists are doing from the comfort of her studio in the United States, the comfort and the safety. I mean, I don't know any journalist that wants to just sit in a hotel room in Iraq. Does anybody understand that for us we used to be able to drive to Ramadi, we used to drive to Falluja, we used to drive to Najaf. We could travel all over this country without having to fly in military helicopters. n\nThat's the only way we can move around here. So, it's when the military can accommodate us, if the military can accommodate us, then we can go out and see. I have been out with Iraqi security forces over and over again. And you know what? When Bob Woodruff was out with Iraqi security forces and he was injured, the first thing that people were asking was, oh, was he being responsible by placing himself in this position with Iraqi forces? And they started to question his responsibility and integrity as a journalist. I mean, we just can't win. I think it's an outrage to point the finger at journalists and say that this is our fault. I really do. And I think it shows an abject lack of respect for any journalist that's prepared to come to this country and risk their lives. "

Oh, sorry, we can't show this reconstruction project because then that's going to expose it to sabotage. And the last time we had journalists down here, the plant was attacked. I mean, security dominates every single thing that happens in this country….So how it is that security issues should not then dominate the media coverage coming out of here?

Worst. President. Ever.

I've thought before about why I occasionally (others might use "consistently"or "regularly") get so gutteral about George Bush. Sometimes I wonder whether that loathing is justified, and whether I go overboard in my evaluations, whether it's just a matter of disagreement over policy. Maybe Bush is doing the best he can and we just disagree.

Well, when I see something like this I think I should just trust my first reaction. The murder in Iraq is NOT the result of a disagreement over policy or a civil dispute about whether the US's national security interests justified unilaterally, and without provocation, invading a sovereign nation, killing its people, endangering and throwing away the lives of thousands of US servicemen, wasting billions upon billions of dollars for no good reason other than to satisfy Bush's bloodlust.

The guy is a monster, a delusional, dangerous, and possibly sociopathic SOB. I don't know of ANY other way to interpret this from the NY Times:

During a private two-hour meeting in the Oval Office on Jan. 31, 2003, he made clear to Prime Minister Tony Blair of Britain that he was determined to invade Iraq without the second resolution, or even if international arms inspectors failed to find unconventional weapons.

....The memo also shows that the president and the prime minister acknowledged that no unconventional weapons had been found inside Iraq. Faced with the possibility of not finding any before the planned invasion, Mr. Bush talked about several ways to provoke a confrontation

The U.S. was thinking of flying U2 reconnaissance aircraft with fighter cover over Iraq, painted in U.N. colours," the memo says, attributing the idea to Mr. Bush. "If Saddam fired on them, he would be in breach."

It also described the president as saying, "The U.S. might be able to bring out a defector who could give a public presentation about Saddam's W.M.D," referring to weapons of mass destruction.

A brief clause in the memo refers to a third possibility, mentioned by Mr. Bush, a proposal to assassinate Saddam Hussein.

And let's not forget this article outlining Saddam's offer to basically unconditionally surrender that would have met the administration's faux demands and spared thousands of lives. And all of this happened BEFORE Bush was asked whether he made any mistakes. If he doesn't think THIS qualifies as a mistake, then he really must be a sociopath.

Bush is a liar and his deliberate lies have costs thousands of innocent lives. There is simply no other way to put it. He should be censured, impeached, and then charged with war crimes.

Worst. president. ever.

Friday, March 17, 2006

Clarion Ledger letter of the day - March 17, 2006

I wonder if the writer of this letter (who lives in Brandon, Rankin County) is trying to be funny. Does he REALLY not know the answer to his question? Was he here a few years ago during the debate over whether to replace the state flag? Is he really that obvlivious? Does he really not know why Congressman Bennie Thompson doesn't display the Mississippi state flag? Hmmm.....

Thompson doesn't display state's flag

I recently traveled to Washington, D.C., to speak with legislators. While there, I spoke with staffers from the offices of Reps. Chip Pickering, Roger Wicker and Bennie Thompson; and Sens. Trent Lott and Thad Cochran.

Outside all of the offices were flags on display. All offices had the American flag on display and also the Mississippi state flag.

Only one congressman did not have the Mississippi state flag on display outside his office - 2nd District U.S. Rep. Thompson.

The only flag he had on display outside of his office was the American flag. Why does he refuse to display the Mississippi state flag? Rep. Thompson's office was the only one I saw without a state flag on display.

Is Congressman Thompson ashamed to be recognized as a Mississippian? That he refuses to display a state flag outside of his office should say something about how he feels about Mississippi.

I encourage all of his constituents to contact him and find out why he does not have a state flag on display at his office.

Christopher Cheney

Thursday, March 16, 2006

Clarion Ledger letter of the day - March 16, 2006

More on the obsession with those festering boils draining society of all that is good, pure, moral and upright. Yes, more rap and Brokeback and gays OH MY!

Gays, pimps have big Oscar year

It is hard out here for me to keep from laughing at the world of entertainment that chose the Rap song It's Hard Out Here For a Pimp from the movie Hustle and Flow as the best original song of the year.

No doubt they realize the inner conceit, the need they have to prove their superior intellect, their elegant tastes, higher values, enviable character and quality of life to the world.
Do they feel It's Hard Out Here For a Pimp will go down in the annals of great songs to be sung

in future ages?

Surely they do. Their egos would not consent to less.

Stardust, Tenderly and all the songs that remain on all our lips, that we still dance to, will just have to take a back seat to the reality that those in the field of entertainment today know music better than the normal listener.

They found it impossible to make political statements at the Oscars celebration. Were they cowardly or were they afraid we might hurt their pocketbooks if we refrained from going to the picture shows to see Capote and Brokeback Mountain - a couple of other winners?

Gays and pimps had a big year at the Oscar ceremony recently. Is that really what they want - recognition? I want to join the entertainment industry in this endeavor by further highlighting them for what they are and for their achievements.

(Name withheld)


It's time for those who were pro-war to stand up and take some responsibility for the debacle that is Iraq.

See here.

Some prime candidates for such a public apology:

"Maybe disgraced commentators and politicians alike, like Daschle, Jimmy Carter, Dennis Kucinich, and all those others, will step forward tonight and show the content of their character by simply admitting what we know already: that their wartime predictions were arrogant, they were misguided and they were dead wrong. Maybe, just maybe, these self-anointed critics will learn from their mistakes. But I doubt it. After all, we don't call them 'elitists' for nothing." (MSNBC's Joe Scarborough, 4/10/03)

"The war was the hard part. The hard part was putting together a coalition, getting 300,000 troops over there and all their equipment and winning. And it gets easier. I mean, setting up a democracy is hard, but it is not as hard as winning a war." (Fox News Channel's Fred Barnes, 4/10/03)

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Clarion Ledger letter of the day - March 14, 2006

The return of the letter of the day, and it couldn't be more appropriate. This is from the media-tv-rap music-porn-desperate housewives-commercials-Will and Grace-Brokeback Mountain-Snoop Dogg are bringing on the end of civilization and corrupting our children department. Typical nut. Look, if your kid is wayward or prone to swearing or misbehaving, maybe it's NOT because he listens to Three Six Mafia or Eminem, maybe he's just 12 years old and just learning those words and they're fun to say (face it, they ARE fun to say). Or, ya know, maybe you're not such a great parent. Really, if you can't win out over Ice Cube, maybe you need some parenting refresher courses. And so what if he DOES like it? Maybe he likes it because you DON'T like it. I can't imagine any 12 year old kid enjoying a 50's music retrospective on PBS. In fact, if any 12 year old kid preferred that to the Three Six Mafia, I'd be more concerned for that child!

On a related note re: the "controversy" over Brokeback Mountain, personally, I don't see society imploding because someone made a movie about a love story involving two men. It's not REQUIRED viewing, after all. Homosexuality is not being thrust (forgive the pun) upon us. Note to those who would obliterate all references/discussions/representations, etc. of homosexuality. Lean in, listen closely: Some people are gay. It's not going away. But relax, there's not a big gay recruitment drive going on out there and, chances are, any homosexual with any taste probably isn't interested in YOU, anyway.

So let's just live and let live, shall we? Anyway, enough of my ranting, here's your letter of the day:

Must we allow our civilization to 'go down the tubes' now?

Throughout history, every advanced civilization that has come along grew, flourished and declined due to an increase in complacency and decadence in all its forms. After seeing the Oscars, I say it's evident that we are headed in the same direction.

Recently, a couple of tribute shows on public TV were dedicated to the '50s and '60s, and a host of the musicians and groups popular at that time, many of whom are still performing. Seeing the precision of the dance moves and the tremendous harmonies sent chills down my back as I envisioned the contrast between then and now.

When a screaming mob of foul-mouthed goons can lurk about the stage spewing their message of hate, sex and violence and command any kind of audience or attention, we are in trouble.
When the same group can do this on national TV in front of millions, muster respect from their peers and claim awards for a best song, or a best anything for that matter, we are really in trouble.

It's amazing to me how we as a country have allowed this rap onslaught to happen. Many great and talented groups and individuals are still out there performing; but they can't get their music played on the air because of the recording industry.

The FCC is the main one to blame. It used to regulate the airwaves. Now, stations police themselves, affecting our children's minds and morals.

Isn't it time we start calling our representatives? Or is it not that important?

Name withheld

Note to writer: I'm not sure if your question is rhetorical, but in the event it's not, the answer is no, it's not that important. Hurry, Michael Bolton is on Mix 98.7, and I know you don't wanna miss it....

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

Barry Bonds took steroids

Gory details here.

In other news, Liberace was gay and Iraq has and had no weapons of mass destruction.

Whoa, and then there's THIS-->

"In addition to detailing the drug usage, the excerpt portrays Bonds as a menacing boor, a tax cheat and an adulterer given to (probably because of the rampant steroid use) sexual dysfunction, hair loss and wild mood swings that included periods of rage."

Sunday, March 05, 2006

Clarion Ledger Letter of the Day - March 5, 2006

From the comfort of his (hurricane damage-spared) stone (stone, mind you, not glass) home in suburban Jackson, Mike Walker of Brandon, tells the good people of New Orleans, ALL of whom are basking in the comfort and luxury of extended stay lodging (except for a few) to be more like the good people of Waveland and live in tents, dagnabit! Oh, and WALK to school, too....none of this DRIVING.....

Hey, you! Yes, you, the one without a house or any clothes or a job or money, based solely on the fact that you were the victim of possibly the single worst disaster in U.S. history, and one which for some reason apparently spared Mike Walker, quit yer durn bellyachin, ya hear? Go build you a house, man! Just go to the Home Depot and get some lumber, get a few pipes and build you a nice house down there. Heck, that's what ole "Iron" Mike Walker would do (if he had to, of course, which he doesn't, but ya just know he would, what with his refusal to be treated like a 2 month old). What are ya waitin for, disaster victims? Get out there and prove Mike Walker wrong!

N.O. residents should stop 'whining'

New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin appears to have terminal "foot-in-mouth" disease on national television, while Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour deals with Congress one-on-one, pointing out the fact that Mississippi Gulf Coast residents are doing their best with what they have.

Evacuees from New Orleans are on the airwaves complaining about the hotel rooms they have been staying in for lo these many months, while Waveland and other Coast survivors are still living in tents, basically exposed to the elements, without bellyaching.

The media constantly talk about New Orleans, probably because, erroneously, they say New Orleans is where Katrina hit, not the Mississippi Gulf Coast.

I know this is a generalization where New Orleans' evacuees are concerned, and to the few that this description does not fit, I apologize. The rest of them should get out of the hotel rooms, get a tent and go back to New Orleans and start rebuilding. They should hush about the accommodations and stop whining!

It's time all of us quit expecting the government to feed us and change our diaper like a 2-month old child and started taking responsibility for our own actions, or lack thereof!

Friday, March 03, 2006

Song of the Day - March 3, 2006

I apologize if I've posted this for download before, but today's song is "Replacements" by RANA from a show at Dulcinea's 100th Monkey in Denver, CO.


Replacements - RANA

Clarion Ledger Letter of the Day - March 3, 2006

Well, wouldn't ya know it, the day immediately after I attempted to highlight the lunacy sometimes found in the Clarion-Ledger's "Letter to the Editor" feature, there are no outrageous letters. I suppose it serves me right for sticking my neck out like that.

Anyway, I liked Mrs. Kelly Jacobs' letter today and she makes a point I hadn't thought of (which is not that hard to do, but still). It's a little more sinister than I would describe it, but it's a good point nonetheless. Mrs. Jacobs asks:

"I think a darker reason was behind the cuts in student loans: the war in Iraq and the low enlistment numbers. By cutting low-interest student loans, this president is trying to force America's youth to enlist with the military so their college will be "paid" for - if they survive."

Again, I don't know that I agree, but she makes a good point.

Here's the letter in its entirety:

Must students pay for war in Iraq?

I have two sons - a 15-year-old and a 17-year-old who's going to Ole Miss in the fall - so I am concerned about how we will pay for their college tuition. Congress keeps passing tax cuts, during a time of war and massive deficit spending, and now another $6 billion will be added to the $12 billion cut from the budget for student financial aid/loans and Pell Grants.

The president said, "If we ensure that America's children succeed in life, they will ensure that America succeeds in the world." Bush is exhorting the children of America to get a good education "so they have a better chance at good, high-wage jobs." How can they when they cannot afford college without financial assistance?

I think a darker reason was behind the cuts in student loans: the war in Iraq and the low enlistment numbers. By cutting low-interest student loans, this president is trying to force America's youth to enlist with the military so their college will be "paid" for - if they survive.

America's only salvation will be the 2006 elections when we must get out the vote and toss out the officials who have supported the unending war in Iraq, budget deficits, tax cuts for the rich and the lack of any oversight for all of this spending, spying and lying.

I'm not the only parent who wants her children to get a college education; I'm just fortunate that they will not have to risk their lives to get one.

Thursday, March 02, 2006


Let's be careful out there...

Song of the Day March 2, 2006

This one should work. The song is "Jump into the Fire" by Harry Nilsson. The song was covered recently to great effect by LCD Soundsystem. This version is by the Radiators with Bob Weir sitting in from a show on September 10, 2005 at the Great American Music Hall in San Francisco. Enjoy

Jump into the Fire - Radiators (right click to download)


Today, the AP has this story. I think it's significant for the obvious reasons. I wonder when the MSM will start saying Bush is a liar like they called Clinton a liar. Certainly Clinton's finger-wagging lie was a pretty clear cut lie, a totally false statement, but it was about a sexual encounter, not war or terrorism or natural disasters.

Pertinent bits:

WASHINGTON (AP) -- On the eve of Hurricane Katrina's fateful landfall, President Bush was confident. His homeland security chief appeared relaxed. And warnings of the coming destruction - breached or overrun levees, deaths at the New Orleans Superdome and overwhelming needs for post-storm rescues - were delivered in dramatic terms to all involved. All of it was captured on videotape.

The Associated Press obtained the confidential government video and made it public Wednesday, offering Americans their own inside glimpse into the government's fateful final Katrina preparations after months of fingerpointing and political recriminations.

"My gut tells me ... this is a bad one and a big one," then-federal disaster chief Michael Brown told the final government-wide briefing the day before Katrina struck the Gulf Coast on Aug. 29.

The president didn't ask a single question during the briefing but assured soon-to-be-battered state officials: "We are fully prepared."


Bush declared four days after the storm, "I don't think anybody anticipated the breach of the levees" that gushed deadly flood waters into New Orleans. He later clarified, saying officials believed, wrongly, after the storm passed that the levees had survived. But the transcripts and video show there was plenty of talk about that possibility even before the storm - and Bush was worried too.

Isn't that just a LIE? The WH has said we shouldn't take too much from this single briefing, but in the briefing the President was specifically informed that the levees could be breached. Doesn't the statement "I don't think anybody anticipated the breach of the levees" directly contradict that? Perhaps I'm missing the subtle nuances of this scenario, but isn't this fundamentally dishonest? Didn't Bush vow to restore "honesty and integrity" to the White House?

More here.

Fair and Balanced.....

Clarion-Ledger Letter of the Day!

I usually try to check the letters to the editor in my local rag, the Clarion-Ledger. More often than not, there is at least one letter that defies logical analysis, a letter that is either so nonsensical or mean-spirited or just plain loony that its writer must struggle to hang on just barely to the world the rest of us occupy. Today's letter is pasted below:

Tax swap debate just smokescreen

I think all this talk of helping the poor with a tax swap - cigarettes for groceries - is just a smokescreen, pun intended, for pols. It's the poorest one quarter of the state who are the smokers and they aren't going to quit just because rich folks think they ought to. There may be worse unintended consequences from this than a black market, and I shudder to think what they could be.

Name withheld

Gotta admit -- good pun

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Song of the Day March 1, 2006

Okay, so I apologize for the lack of posts lately. I have no excuse. In an effort to atone for this sin of omission, I humbly offer the following mp3 from Clap Your Hands Say Yeah.

I absolutely cannot get enough of this song. As Wendi can attest, I've listened to it obsessively for the last couple of weeks. She's good-natured about it thankfully.

Here it is:

Clap Your Hands Say Yeah - Skin of My Yellow Country Teeth (right click to download)

P.S. Ok, so it appears that link is outdated. Bear with me, I'll try to find another place hosting this file. If not, would it kill ya to go out and buy the song on itunes or even the whole CD?