07/28/08 12:53 - ID#45171
Mutiny in the Op-Ed of the Wash. Post?
A certain segment of our society loves pointing to polls suggesting that is the express wish of the American people for the Iraq war to end, and stomp their feet like spoiled children when their candidates teeter even slightly... especially when men who know what they are talking about (such as Gen. Petraeus) give that candidate information they find politically offensive. So much for "fact finding." I just have one simple question. Why is Speaker Pelosi ignoring the will of the American people on one issue while simultaneously trumpeting the will of the American people to justify her stance on another issue?
You see, Speaker Pelosi is playing a dangerous game on an issue she is dead wrong about. Forget this non-sense about opening the strategic oil reserve - it is a fallacious argument because these liberal politicians argue themselves that drilling won't affect price. Putting 90 billion barrels of oil on the market, they argue, will not affect price accordingly but putting 70 million barrels on the market is somehow a better solution in their eyes. Not only is this argument insulting to the intelligence of the American middle class who are being hurt incredibly by gas prices, but it defies even the most basic tenets of supply and demand. Even the length of time it would take to put the oil on the market has been incredibly overblown. Details aside, this is what the American people clearly want and if she doesn't allow the vote backlash against Democrats will be enormous, albeit unfairly for certain Democrats who, unlike Speaker Pelosi, respects the will of the American people.
Speaker Pelosi is willing to watch Rome burn to make a point and to stay true to the environmentalists she is beholden to. Even papers such as the Washington Post are now standing with mouth agape at Nancy Pelosi. She and she alone is to blame for preventing a vote, which she can do by decree as Speaker, which is a vote that would likely pass. What Americans want only matters to her when Americans agree with her. If she continues she will not be Speaker in another year and will be forced to walk the plank for potentially endangering the majority they currently enjoy.
Trent Lott lost his position for much, much less. If defying the will of the American people based on ideology is treasonous in the context of George W. Bush (sound familiar?), then in this context it is equally applicable as well. People should not be surprised to see that Congress is less popular than President Bush, and under the current leadership it is truly miraculous that in two years Democrats have proven that their leadership is even more haphazard than when Republicans ran things. It has only been two years! When Americans watch and listen to the leaders of Congress, can it be possible that by removing the incompetent Republicans that things have actually gotten worse? Watch and listen to Speaker Pelosi and judge for yourself.
10/08/07 11:35 - ID#41551
Hillary and war - I told you guys!
The dynamics of the Democratic Party have changed over the past 6 years. The most noteworthy shift has been the discrepancy over where the base lies, which factions in the Democratic camp are more vocal and better funded, and how that ends up affecting who the big time candidates are blowing kisses to.
Today the far left wing of the party are the best funded and best organized, and through the use of mass media and the internet exert an enormous amount of control over what the talking points and agenda for the party will be. Long gone are the days where Daniel Patrick Moynihan (a former Democrat Senator from New York, and a man I've always felt was truly brilliant and a credit to the political class) is electable. We now live in the days where the big Presidential candidates skip the DLCC conference, which is the largest group of grassroots political organizers in the country and have always been regularly attended by Democratic candidates, only to attend utter drivel such as YearlyKos. The reasons why are appalling - it has to do with money and which group has more of an ability to affect the campaigns negatively. What the candidates haven't realized is that they snubbed the actual base of the party, who do the dirty work to get candidates elected, only to placate the self-important, delusional people who blog therefore feel they influenced an election.
Take a quick look at our political class - we have no more people like Daniel Patrick Moynihan in Congress. Granted, Senator Moynihan would not be electable these days despite his brilliance, because as a New Yorker he supported restricting abortion, but nevertheless our current political class consists of, in comparison, people who are relative embarrassments. Its a sad time for those of us who take politics very seriously because the net effect is that we lack leadership during one of the most critically dangerous times in our country's history.
FDR is a man who did some extraordinarily controversial things to protect our nation - some of which would have gotten him impeached had he been President today - but without leaders like Churchill and FDR, would we have been better off in the fight to stamp out the Nazis? Without talismans like these two men, I think we would have lost. At this point in time, we desperately need a talisman again! The question is, who will that be? I see no viable candidates.
Hillary and the anti-war left - is the honeymoon over?
Last week, while responding to (e:dcoffee), I suggested in his comments (and in my own journal on previous occasions) that Hillary will almost certainly throw the anti-war crowd under the bus once she gets the nomination. Lo and behold, here is your first taste of a very bitter beer -
What happens when you ask the Queen a question she isn't comfortable responding to? She accuses you of being a plant, accuses you of being ignorant about the legislation you are referring to, then quickly apologizes once she realizes that she indeed just acted bitchy and dressed down an honest voter in public. Its rare to see Hillary step out of the character her campaign has put her in, but there you have it. Towards the end, she did manage to put it back together.
Woe be to those who don't step in line. I actually feel really bad for the guy - although I doubt I agree with him on anything, I think he has a right to put Hillary in an uncomfortable position if in fact she is doing something that people who might vote for her don't like.
It is clear to me that Hillary has been using her husband's "triangulation" strategy to perfection ever since she announced her candidacy. Now that this has happened, and the press is bound to be horrendous, I am predicting a very strong anti-war, "we're getting out of Iraq ASAP once I'm elected" sort of message - which I've been warning you anti-war liberal types, is a complete and utter lie. Do not believe Hillary when she says this - I'm being honest and not Machiavellian about this. If you are anti-war and think Hillary is going to pull all of the troops out, you'll be deeply regretting your choice. Also, do not think for a second that Hillary will take military options off the table against Iran (or anyone else, for that matter), which is what the poor sod that she berated was worried about. Granted, I think literally the only people who are paranoid about us attacking Iran are the netroot kook types that she placated at YearlyKos, but these mixed messages are clearly beginning to make anti-war folks nervous... and to be honest you should be if you are so inclined.
Where the anti-war left get it utterly wrong is when they accuse Hillary of being a war monger. For God's sake, I'm not asking the world of people to be able to discern the difference between being a war monger and refusing to eliminate military options against a dangerous state. Taking part in the latter does not make you the former.
Now, the particularly entertaining part of this read is the comments in the bottom of the blog. Some people accuse the media of being sexist because of how the headlines are phrased (laughably absurd), some actually believe that the guy was a plant (paranoid clintonoid), some accused the questioner of being sexist himself (riiiiiight....), some people are just getting in shots because its easy (Republicans, or possibly Obama supporters). Reading Dem on Dem violence, I have to say, is a very weird experience.
Politics is becoming more of a sport/soap opera every day.
07/25/07 10:37 - ID#40246
The Political Season - ZZZZzzzzzz.....
A couple days ago CNN hosted a Democratic Party debate with the assistance of YouTube, which I think is an interesting spin on how to take questions. The cynical side of me cannot ignore that in the end these debates always end up the same - the questions are filtered, the candidates won't answer questions directly and as a result nobody learns anything new about the candidates that would help voters make a decision. I'm going to illustrate to you why these debates are useless regardless of the method of asking the question. Watch -
This is a textbook example of what I hate about politicians. When she is asked about the definition of liberal the first few words out of her mouth are straight up, unfiltered bullshit, like taking 3 warm shots of Crown Royal with no chaser. Mrs. Clinton is definitely not alone - all politicians do this regardless of party and I could have easily used a different example. What the fuck is she talking about - "liberal" used to mean the opposite of big government and individual freedom? Did she even think through what she was saying or does she actually believe that liberals used to be more like Republicans? In other words, she answered the question but in doing so used flowery and meaningless language. Following that, some guy with no chance in hell of winning takes a pot shot at Barack Obama, and Obama responds in kind.
I have to ask again - how does any of this help voters make a better decision about who to pick? How relevant of a question was this to ask anyway? This is probably the most important presidential election of the past 35-40 years and this is the type of question that CNN chose to ask the candidates? Another question that boggled my mind - are African Americans going to receive reparations for slavery? First of all, the answer to that question is obvious - no. Secondly, this sort of question is by no means representative of the most important issues of the day. By the way, it was noted that not ONE question regarding how to handle illegal immigration passed through CNN's filter. When the questions are atrocious and the answers are even worse, who cares how "innovative" the questions are delivered? Again, its because these debates are ultimately meaningless. What about asking Democratic candidates about the ramifications of pulling out of Iraq ASAP, something the influential activists and liberals everywhere are begging for? None of the Democrats will actually answer that question.
It is intriguing to me that in passing recently Mr. Edwards suggested cornering out the weaker opposition to Mrs. Clinton. Hey John, YOU are the weaker opposition. Mr. Edwards' main topic is poverty, aka the class divide known as "the two Americas" that most observers are very familiar with, since it was the exact same topic that lost him the nomination in '04. The problems Edwards faces are twofold - a) he's a fabulously rich guy talking about poverty, and b) his own vanity, which was best captured in the following video -
- in my best blatantly gay voice* - Just tease it a little, tease it!
Stuff like this is incredibly damaging to a politicians prospects. Coupled with the news about how much his haircuts cost, he has absolutely no credibility with the people he is trying to woo for votes. Granted, although rich people are completely oblivious to the needs of the poor, I don't think it should preclude them from shining a light on the issue. RFK and FDR are two examples of rich guys that had credibility with the poor. Unfortunately, John Edwards is no RFK or FDR. To his credit, as a wealthy liberal that lives an astoundingly wasteful lifestyle, he isn't preaching to us about lifestyle changes to curb global warming.
At the moment, Democratic politics are dominated by a cult of personality, obsession with polling results and the desire to see Bush out office, none of which make compelling reasons to vote for a candidate. At the moment, and I can't believe I'm saying this, the only Democrat making any sense at all is actually Joe Biden, one of the most entrenched blowhard Washington insiders in the Senate. Granted, all politicans are basically the same, but Biden, in my view, is the straightest talker and the most level headed. A few years ago Biden suggested what in essence would be a "United States of Iraq" with subregions created based on ethnicity. How badly he was poo-pooed at the time - as time passes by he is looking wiser and wiser.
Get involved - voter apathy, in my opinion anyway, is a mockery of a basic freedom that many in the world don't individually hold. Go get information on the candidates by checking out their web sites, reading their ideas, finding out how they vote on issues that are important to you. Just don't expect to learn much from debates until the nominees are chosen.
06/13/07 01:21 - ID#39638
Bush V2.0 and Political Analysis
No joking. He's half-Mexican, very handsome, connected (the son of Jeb, who most people consider to be the more capable Bush brother, which is a shame) and is the grandson of a migrant worker. This is the sort of candidate the Democrats would die to have in 10 years. At the moment George P. Bush is training as an intelligence officer in the Naval Reserve and has stated that he wants to wait 10 years before entering politics. When he does things will get interesting.
Presidential Politics - A Highly Scientific Statistical Analysis
For those of you who haven't been watching (and lets be honest, who is really watching these debates anyway) the two main political parties have been conducting debates over the past couple months. For most people this is extremely early to be thinking about debates... except for Democrats, for whom time until 1/20/09 moves as slow as molasses in a squeeze bottle.
The main candidates, or more accurately, the only ones that are going to even matter a year from now, are as follows. On the Democratic side you have Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama and John Edwards. On the GOP side you have Rudy Giuliani, John McCain and very soon, Fred Thompson. In the following paragraphs I'm going to share with you my pre-pre-pre-pre election analysis on the situation and how I think things are going to go for the various candidates. Keep in mind - Howard Dean was actually feasible for a while in '04 so anything could happen.
Generally speaking, Barack Obama has the support of what I call the "Volvo and Chardonnay" liberal elites, while in a fit of irony Hillary Clinton has the support of blacks and the Hollywood crowd... although Barack is whittling away at that. John Edwards is stuck, in all honesty, with taking votes away from the other two as a way of gaining ground and is still talking about his "two Americas" platform. Although its still a year and a half out, I don't see anyone knocking down the Clinton political machine. Take a guess where my vote won't be going!
On the GOP side, its a little more interesting because the hero to the conservative base hasn't even declared his candidacy yet. There are some rules within the GOP if you want to run for President - you must have the support of the conservatives and you must be against abortion. Without both you cannot get the nomination despite how strong you are on other issues. The conservatives have been waiting for somebody to get behind because frankly, Giuliani is too liberal on social issues and they are pissed at McCain for what they perceive as bad decision making and cooperating with "the enemy." This is why Fred Thompson is statistically tied with Giuliani despite not having declared yet. Fred Thompson is considered to be more reliably conservative, is well known because of his acting on Law and Order, has previous experience in the Senate, has consulted in the past and is a member of the influential Council on Foreign Relations. Another interesting twist - he used to be a lobbyist. In the end I believe that its a two-horse race between Thompson and Giuliani, and things aren't as clear cut on the GOP side so I wouldn't even begin to try to make a stab at who will win the nomination. I think it will depend heavily on whether or not Giuliani can placate enough conservatives and secure enough independant centrist types to make up the gap.
The Rating System
Putting it terribly simply, voters categorize candidates based on how close they align themselves with the candidates philospohy, how attractive a candidate is and where they stand on hot button issues. So, I went ahead and scaled things down a bit. After all, its still early.
The Infamous Gay-dar
Toleration of sexual preference is a litmus test. For the Dems, if you ain't lib then you are glib. For the GOP, stance on abortion really is the standard. Nevertheless, here is my analysis.
As you can see the Democrats are fabulous. John Edwards, in green, gets a little limp towards the end because he supports "civil unions" and not "marriage." What about the GOP?
Fred Thompson, in blue, is holding it down for the "reich" wing sexually, if you ask liberals. Both Giuliani and McCain are moderate and generally don't have a problem with gay people, but eventually diverge because Giuliani is considered to be somewhat fabulous.
The Sexy Factor
We are superficial - its part of the American mystique. How do the two parties stack up?
Hillary in silk make voters vomit, although considering how prolific Slick Willy is and was, I find it hard to believe that he would have married someone who didn't at least have a nice ass when she was younger. Still though, nothing can save Hillary from time, gravity and unfavorable stage lighting. As for Barack Obama and John Edwards - these are some attractive gentleman. Consider the perfect hair of John Edwards and tell me I'm wrong.
Fred Thompson, in blue, is in desperate need of political-strength Maxoderm. Giuliani and McCain are equally attractive, meaning that for politicians they look about what you would expect GOP front runners to look like. Both are also equally subject to caricature.
The Hot Button (El Botón Caliente)
Immigration is today's main hot button issue outside of the Iraq war. Immigration will be a focus point for the '08 election. Where do the candidates stand?
In Hillary Clinton's case even her ACCENT will change depending on who she is talking to, let alone her message. For those of you who don't get my clever reference, Hillary has been known to sound like a black Baptist when she is in Harlem, and a Dixie Chick when she is in the south. As for John Edwards and Barack Obama, they are fairly consistant in their belief that family ties (a common method for illegals is known as "anchor babies") should remain a consideration for illegal immigrants who wish to pursue a route to legality. No Democratic candidate is so far left wing on immigration as to state things like "there are no illegal immigrants, only immigrants" or "California used to be Mexico, thereby for some bizarre reason native Mexicans should be able to roam freely."
Fred Thompson supports your classic conservative viewpoint on immigration... at least that is what he is expected to support anyway! As for Giuliani (in green) he is a compassionate man and wants to help the illegals who are currently here but supports sharp, even draconian, measures to ensure that the flow of illegals stops. As for McCain - well, lets just say that in GOP circles nothing McCain does is right at the moment.
02/15/07 04:12 - ID#38167
Al Franken - D.O.A.
Sam Seder - now is the time, brother! As you know, Sam, it doesn't take a great deal of effort to outshine Randi Rhodes and now that the "big dog" has been euthanized the doors have swung open! Not only have the doors swung open, my friend in liberalhood, but the doors have been practically been - *snicker* - UNHINGED! You can definitely do this - and in a cruel ironic twist, if you play your cards right my man, you can get the "Wal-Mart" rollback on the price of the station very, very soon. Sam Seder Radio Network - think of it!
I say D.O.A. obviously because he doesn't have a burning chance in hell of actually being elected. Not only does he not represent in any way, shape or form the political landscape of his 'home state' (he's spent 90% of his life in either Hollywood or Manhattan) but he has absolutely no traits that are required of an effective politician. Make no mistake - this is a vanity project.
I can't help but wonder what was on his mind when he decided to run, and one part of me would absolutely love to watch a characteristic Franken implosion live on C-SPAN. Further, I think it would be interesting to see Al Franken get gangbanged and checked by the Italian Grandmother From Hell, Mrs. Pelosi when he inevitably would drool out the following -
"GODDAMMIT - they aren't yelling at the Republicans enough!"
"BUSH LIED 4 REAL - and the Democrats refuse to impeach!"
"We need to cut the funding - NOW!"
"Rush Limbaugh is successful and I am not - therefore we need to enact legislation that would FORCE an otherwise unwilling radio audience to listen to unpopular, unmarketable content that was a proven failure when I tried it!"
Prepare for the next election cycle to get incredibly amusing, and not because they will be laughing WITH Mr. Franken. Minnesota is known for Jesse "The Mind" Ventura's escapades, but I assure you, friends, he'll never be a Senator.
08/19/06 05:41 - ID#24663
To Answer Dcoffee
Why are some Republicans supporting Lieberman? In order to understand this its important to know a little bit about the political climate in CT, although any national money coming from Republicans is a separate issue, which I'll highlight on. The R candidate in CT is not a viable candidate, and the Republicans in CT do not want him to run. He has been asked to resign his candidacy but he refuses. The truth is, liberal Republicans and conservative Democrats aren't much different, which is why in the northeast Lieberman is an alluring candidate as an Independant in comparison to Schlesinger. On the topic of the national party in relation to Lieberman, the national R's would support Lieberman minimally if at all, as outside of the Iraq war he has a liberal voting record, which frankly many lefties are refusing to acknowledge because of their blind rage over what the government is doing with the war and Lieberman's support of it. The only pleasure any Republicans are taking out of this is that Lamont is seen as a candidate propped by liberal 527 organizations and any kind of a defeat of a candidate like that is good news in their eyes. Plus, its important to note that if Lieberman was NOT an independant candidate this time around he wouldn't be getting any support from Republicans whatsoever. The fact that Lieberman is technically an "independant" frees Republicans from any so-called "voters guilt" over voting for or supporting Lieberman.
As for your comments about the 2-party system - in general I agree that the 2-party system isn't the best one out there. Stifling choices is a detriment to democracy. However, having multiple parties to choose from ends up completely making a mess of government. Take a look at Europe - Germany in particular, because this just happened recently there. When a party in most European nations do not get 51% of the vote in general elections, coalition governments have to be worked out... which is a worse situation than what we have currently because nothing EVER gets done in governments that are constantly politically gridlocked. Without a clear and established majority, you have chaos in government at worst and status quo at best. This is why, although our system isn't perfect, its still better than what you see elsewhere.
About the "60%" poll that liberals have been talking about quite a bit recently - its important to be precise about the language of the poll to determine what was really said. Here is a breakdown of the results - What the poll determined was that 60% of the polled participants "oppose the Iraq war" and a majority support at least a limited withdrawal of some troops from Iraq by the end of the year. What this *doesn't* mean is that all Americans want all our troops out of Iraq right this minute, although 26% of those polled suggested that. If you look at the numbers, it can be said simultaneously that a majority want at minimum some troop withdrawal, if not all troops withdrawn (61%), and also that a majority want troop levels to change only minimally, if not at all (69%). If isn't the textbook example of a mixed message, than what is? Regardless, Lamont is a far left wacko because he supports policies that are generally unpopular with the American people - complete troop pullout, nationalized health care, anti Wal-Mart, pro-abortion - he is a walking, talking laundry list of issues that are supported by far-left radicals.
I completely and utterly reject the idea that Joe Lieiberman is a candidate that doesn't speak for the voters of CT, for a variety of obvious reasons. To suggest that he is doing this because of ego, or acting like a spolied brat, etc. is demagogery, pure and simple.
1) You cannot say that Lamont is a candidate that has broad Democratic approval in CT, since he really only won HALF of the votes in the Democratic primary... and that was even after our friends in the liberal grassroots stuffed the Democratic voter base by 20,000 votes since May. Joe Lieberman won roughly half of the votes in the primary in a margin similar to the Presidentiall election in '04. According to liberals, GWB does not have a mandate to govern the way he chooses because 48% of Americans disagree with him. If you libs want to say this, than you cannot say that Lamont has a mandate either because 48% of Democratic voters in CT disagreed. Liberals are treating Connecticut Democratic voters in '06 like they treated Republican voters nationally in '04. How much more insane can we possibly get?
2) The plurality of voters in CT are actually registered Independants. In the lastest poll, 53% of likely voters said that Lieberman deserves to be re-elected and half doubt Lamont's ability to do the job - So what does this mean? It means that Lieberman, and presumably his politics, are being supported broadly by Democrats, Independants and Republicans - more importantly, his Democratic losses are being more than offset by his support amongst Independants and Republicans. This is proof that a majority of Connecticut voters still support Joe Lieberman despite his party affiliation. It defies logic to suggest that with support like that he shouldn't run.
Its beyond question. Joe Lieberman has broad support in Connecticut amongst its voters. He is not an unpopular candidate in CT when he has half of the Democratic support and a large majority of the support of everyone else. Its foolish to state that Lamont's victory in the primary was a testament to democracy but Lieberman winning a general election degrades democracy. Primaries are important only to the extent that a politician is chosen to represent a single political party, and that if you don't pick the right candidate you will not win regardless of who is running your campaign. It doesn't necessarily say anything about who most of the voters in their particular jurisdiction support - this is extremely important and if more liberals understood that concept (and the point about the virtual split between Demos in CT between Lamont and Lieberman) then a lot of this complaining would cease.
Last point - enough with the complaints about "not being heard" or "being excluded" in government. Believe me, PLENTY of liberal representation in Congress is making your points for you nobody is more loud and outspoken then the liberal Democrats out there. Just because you are not getting what you want doesn't mean that you aren't being heard. Liberals will get their way when they win majorities and are able to set the leglislative agenda. If you cannot win a majority when you are running for office, or trying to introduce a bill, then you simply are not going to have it your way. Interestingly enough, previous to 1994 when Democrats ran the show in Congress for 50 years I never heard of Democrats complaining about the lack of political parity. My advice to Democrats is similar to yours - get out there, speak out, get your votes together and win. Convince other people that you are right. Get more seats in Congress, win the Presidency, then you will be able to get what you want.
07/03/06 06:16 - ID#24649
Illustrations of Absurdity
I said earlier that I wasn't going to make many, if any, political posts during the summer. After all, the good stuff won't start kicking up until late August/early September. However, the latest news cycle has forced me to address once again the gifts that keep on giving; the NYT and the Huffington Post. I'm going to illustrate why in the United States of America freedom of speech is NOT an absolute, nor should it be, in the context of the media.
Before I get into that however, I wanted to talk briefly about the emotional state of the American voter. I've had a theory that in general Americans are sick and tired of the animosity, the severe partisanship and the nastiness that has enveloped our politics since GWB got elected. At the 3's Company party I was talking with people about this and in general they agreed. After '04 I think we crossed a threshhold that many Americans find to be unacceptable.
What happened to the state of our discourse? 40 years ago William F. Buckley, one of the most brilliant and articulate political minds America has ever produced and the father of the Conservative movement, began a show called Firing Line on PBS. To this day I believe that it is the best politically oriented talk show that American television has ever produced. Why? Because Mr. Buckley constantly invited people he vehemently disagreed with politically, and *GASP* some incredible debates were produced as a result. No animosity - just people discussing their views, being challenged and arguing their points in a civilized manner. Our society over the past 30 years has become more and more willing to be hostile to one another over things we disagree on. Politics is emotional at times and people are going to have their disagreements, but what made it okay and socially acceptable to act like wild animals to each other? We shout at each other, we make things personal, we insult vast sections of American society. Its unexcusable. You can take this one to the bank - America is sick of it and in November the party that runs the most negative campaign will be severely punished by the voters. As a result, this is why I believe that the coming election will be more interesting than the last.
Ok - about freedom of speech and why it is not an absolute. Despite the media's constant whining about privacy and freedom of the press, the media consistently violates the privacy of others. Recently, NYT published a story with a picture of Don Rumsfeld's driveway and front door, and in addtion pointed out where the security camera is. The Huffington Post published the private information of several Swft Boat Vets, and eventually after pressure on the editor of the site the information was removed. Several moonbat fringe kooks actually called these guys and threatened their lives over "ruining the country" because John Fucking Kerry didn't get elected. One guy had to police his phone because he didn't want his grandkids to inadvertantly pick up the phone and hear that crap. The left's favorite bullseye, Rush Limbaugh, once again violated his privacy and attempted to damage him by publishing a story about him coming back from the Dominican Republic with a bottle of Viagra in his bag. I won't even bother with NYT's serial necessity to reveal classified information on the basis that something *might* be illegal - information and stories aren't vetted anymore precisely because the truth is less important than having the ends justify the means. Anybody with a brain understands that NYT and many other publications like it have attempted to undermine the current administration and even influence elections. I REALLY won't even bother about Rathergate - that pinata has been beat, broken and busted up.
So let me get this straight. Its okay to tell the world where Rumsfeld and Cheney live (Cindy Sheehan and Code Pink coming to a $1.5m home in Maryland soon), its okay to tell the world how we are fighting the war on terror and revealing classified information simply because of political objections of a few editors, its okay to knowingly publish false information, its okay to violate the privacy of private citizens. However, its definitely NOT okay to know who the sources of the false stories are and what goes on in the editorial room. The privacy of the NYT is untouchable and sacred. I'm still waiting for extensive photographs of Billary's property in Chappequa.
I've heard all the arguments that people who support NYT say in response. "If its illegal (big IF since all of the NYT's efforts have unmercilessly flopped), then the Times should expose it anyway," The recent disclosure of our government using financial databases to track and freeze assets of would-be terrorists? "Well, the terrorists already know that their money is tracked so this isn't big news." Oh really? Rathergate - "Well, the documents were false but the story is true." Freedom of speech - "the first thing that fascists do is try to control the media." This is why I love the platitudes that the media use to try to justify their immoral and techincally illegal behavior. In the end it doesn't change anything and exposes the fraudulent behavior that these people purport to be the behavior of legitimate journalists.
The plain truth of this sad story is that more journalists and politically involved individuals are going to be going to jail soon. The reason why freedom of speech is not absolute with respect to the media is because the media have abandoned journalistic integrity, as a result papers like the Times are knowingly committing felonies and in the end when you do commit felonies your ass is going to end up in prison like Judith Miller. People like Bill Keller believe that they are not subject to the law because, in their view, the media is the last check on government activities. Who is checking the journalists when its clear that they haven't been checking themselves? This is precisely why the freedom of speech argument will never hold up in a court if the Justice Department decides to prosecute. Nobody is above the law - ask Nixon.
If the government begins issuing subpoenas to members of the media, do not cry to me about how the media is being punished for conflicting political views - its absolutely farcical. Suggesting something so patently absurd only bolsters the arguments of those who say that the media are abandoning responsible journalism and shunning all responsibility for themselves. Crying about supposedly being punished rings hollow when you've commited a felony. If this happened during FDR's time, whatever you believe BushCo has in store for the liberal media would pale in comparison to what FDR was willing to do to people who knowingly acted against the government during a time of troop deployment.
Interestingly (and counterintuitively) members of the media in Europe are eating their own over the fictionalization of news stories - I never thought that Europe's media would be scrutinized before we began scrutinizing our own media. You all know how I am - I hate the word "progressive." However I'm compelled to note that it seems that Europe are in fact more progressive about keeping their own media in check. Print media is now vetted not by itself, like responsible journalists used to do. Print media is now vetted by online media, which of course is why the print media is constantly vilifying and questioning the journalistic integrity of online media. The irony is delicious.
04/14/06 11:37 - ID#24627
Judith Einach, Byron Brown
My take on it is this - I don't agree with Einach politically at all. She's hard left and I did not vote for her. However - I completely admire her dedication to the area, and the truth is that despite her losing to Brown it was good of her to volunteer her talent and intelligence to Byron Brown, whose administration apparently lacks such qualities. You cannot deny Judith Einach's pedigree with respect to her commitment and fervor for improving our area. Just a tip o' the hat from your local Elmwood Republican. I wanna give Judy a hug over this one because I truly believe that she is a good, committed person and she got the big time railroad treatment from the ignorant ones downtown. Our area needs 100,000 Judith Einachs. I might ask for some political diversity in that 100,000... but imagine what we could do if we had a large, vocal, zealously committed group of people like Judith?
Did these people even think about what they were doing before they did it? She was fired (ahem, excuse me, "told to leave") by Brown's communications director, Peter Cutler. Since when does a communications director get authority to fire anybody anyway? What a crock of shit this guy Cutler is... and apparently according to other city employees Cutler has autonimously made decisions and consented to things without Masiello's knowledge. Who is calling the shots down at City Hall? Apparently its not Byron Brown. What we're seeing here is exactly why good people don't get involved in trying to improve the local situation. You have political operatives, these hired goons, guarding their turf and protecting their guy... at all costs. Cutler is a textbook example of slimy shitstain operatives who subvert their own boss on occasion, and at the same time try to punish people employed by (or volunteering for, apparently) the city if you dare be critical. These people are paid to keep local politics as opaque as possible. City Hall is a bastion of totalitarianism. Peter Cutler has been professionally bending the truth for years, and now Mr. Pavel and Pete are trying to cover it up and essentially call Judith Einach a liar. Lets take a look at the credibility and professional history of the parties involved... who are we to believe, Cutler and Pavel, or Einach? Sorry Petey. You are a child compared to Judith Einach.
Don't like criticism, Pete? Don't like criticism Byron? FUCK YOU. BOTH OF YOU ARE TERRIBLE AT YOUR POSITIONS AND SHOULD BE FIRED IMMEDIATELY. How's that for criticism? I support Judy Einach here, and the truth of the matter is that it takes an impossibly high amount of insecurity, ego and immaturity to perpetrate something like that. You are both guilty and deserve to be ejected from your positions as fast as possible before any more damage is done. What are you going to do if people disagree with you outside of your own controlled fascist, law breaking environment? Send police to their house and escort them out of Buffalo?
Josh's Reflection On Byron Brown's First 100 Days In Office
Byron Brown isn't even a Buffalo native... he can't possibly understand the issues of this city. He is a leader by title and not by example. Nobody outside of City Hall and select districts in the city respects Byron. Byron was elected because he is a Democrat. PERIOD. It had nothing to do with the "job" he did in Albany, or any political pedigree, or excellence in past performance.
Byron Brown has showed a shocking lack of judgment concerning the people he surrounds himself with. People like Pete Cutler are in it for self-preservation and he doesn't give a damn about you or your desires to improve our city's situation. This is the type of person that Byron Brown feels are the best people for the job? Absolutely shocking. I thought that Byron Brown was a "mayor of the people" - at least thats the line he's using. Ironically it was stolen from Judith Einach. If Byron is a "mayor of the people," then why does he have police guarding his office from those ne'er-do-wells... you know, the peons who actually elected him, THE PEOPLE? Why does Byron Brown's e-mails go to Peter Cutler and not to Byron Brown? Even Masiello published his own e-mail address. Where was the leadership during the Police ticket fiasco this winter? Byron Brown was in his office hiding behind his desk and his police guard.
Why is it that Brown's administration is locking down City Hall like it has? Do these people realize that City Hall belongs to us and not them? As my employees, I expect the Mayor and his people to serve the community. They have done nothing but serve themselves. Get rid of the excess security - Masiello didn't need it, Griffin didn't need it, and you definitely don't need it, Byron.
Absolutely nothing has been achieved during Byron's first 100 days in office. Nothing is even on the slate for achievement. Leadership is a buzzword and not a policy of the Brown administration - take a look at Byron Brown's actions and you'll see clearly that there is no leadership at the top. A true leader would have jumped at the chance to talk about the ticket fiasco in a rational manner, and a true leader would have backed the people up and publicly questioned the police's true motivation. Bottom line - it was a union contract issue and the Police Commissioner should have been publicly chided by Brown. Instead, he made one public comment about it then went back into hiding. Even if he agreed completely with law enforcement, the manner in which he approached this problem showed a complete lack of sensitivity to the populace and insulted the collective intelligence of the community. Leaders don't hide - chickenshits hide. Byron Brown is a chickenshit and not a leader... the first 100 days of his tenure are proof.
Leaders know how to choose, motivate and appropriately monitor their employees. Byron has completely lost the plot in this regard. Byron Brown has absolutely no control over the people that work for him. The manner in which Judith Einach was handled begs the question - did Byron Brown even know what was going on? Mayors pass off a lot of details and issues to their administrations, so naturally Byron Brown isn't going to be worrying about volunteers. Because of the profile of Judith Einach, however, Pete Cutler and the cronies should have known that this situation was going to make City Hall look absolutely terrible. Are there any directives being handed down from Brown's office? The lack of leadership and direction is completely beyond question.
In short, Byron Brown is a NYC import with a proven track record of abuse of power, incompetance, contempt for the populace, cronyism and a complete lack of leadership. I told you all that this was going to happen back in the fall - things are actually worse than I imagined. We need to abort. These people need to be thrown out immediately and fed to the private sector, where a vast majority of the bullshit they perpetrate isn't tolerated. 100 days has been too long for Byron Brown. No damage was done, thankfully, but that is strictly a result of Byron Brown doing nothing. Byron, Pete, all of them have proven their incompetance and abusive nature in record time. For the good of our city we have to begin proceedings to remove Byron from office. Unfortunately, people that care are outnumbered by the people that don't. I'm using this space to personally impune and criticize Byron Brown until he isn't mayor anymore - hopefully all independant media will do the same and keep our officials in check.
03/27/06 03:07 - ID#24620
I'm right, once again...
Exhibit A - how liberals handle rallys that they disapprove of -
Lets stop pretending that the left embraces diversity. In particular, I can't stop laughing about how lefties condemn others for being intolerant, then turn around and perpetrate what the politicians and citizens of San Fran just did. Sheer lunacy.
You see, the left embraces diversity as long as its LEFTY diversity. Ban a retired Navy ship from San Fran's port? If you are a San Fran liberal lunatic, this makes a lot of sense, because you generally hate the military and believe to the core of your being that you are superior to those who choose the military path, so therefore this is an acceptable solution. Anti-war rallies, gay rallies? Yep, if you are a lefty in San Fran this is acceptable, as it should be. Christian teens rallying in San Fran? NO - its an "act of provocation." So, insulting the military and Christians at every available opportunity isn't an act of provocation, but Christian kids marching around San Fran is? Bullshit.
What a bunch of foolish, senseless, childish sods that city on the bay is populated with. Except (e:twisted) and (e:ajay) - y'all are good people in my book for sure. Grown men and women calling teenagers "fascists" and holding up signs saying "I moved here to get away from people like you?" What a complete and utter embarrassment to themselves. Its things like this episode that make San Fran an ideological island, and ensure that no liberals will win a national election out of the fear that a Democrat would potentially be influenced by people this clinically insane. When you look at who is funding the Democratic Party nowadays, you should be worried about that. This is also why I fully welcome a Hillary nomination for '08.
Thankfully, the Constitution protects these people from themselves and from others. In Sweden, the country of my family's origin, you aren't so lucky. A minister was jailed there recently for calling homosexuality a sin during a church service! Just one of many reasons why Europe could never be as great as the USA is - in Europe, there ARE limitations to what you can say in public, thanks to liberals and the nanny state. Apparently this is hate speech, but what just happened to those kids in San Fran isn't. Its "hip" to insult Christians nowadays, so feel free to do so. But, when you come to me and cry about people talking about their religious beliefs openly, in groups and in public, if what they have to say offends you, I'm pretty much going to tell you to practice what you preach. Oooh, sizzle! Sizzle!
03/01/06 10:46 - ID#24609
Actually (e:ajay) you are completely wrong. Pew did a study that showed during both 2004 and 2005 that 30% considered themselves to be Republican and 33% considered themselves to be Democrat. You can read the study here ->
Even with CBS's "objective survey" being weighted it came out to 28% Republican 37% Democrat. That = the textbook definition of skewed polling. To suggest that somehow this was a representative sample is amusing to me.
Anyhow, onward and upward.
I occasionally put myself through watching Chris Matthews' trainwreck of a show. (Hint - there is a reason why his ratings are among the worst in the talking head circuit.) This blithering fool Carter devotee (strike 1) actually suggested that it was a pity that the potential for civil war didn't start sooner.
"The problem is it took a little time for this (the potential for civil war) to take shape."
THE PROBLEM, Chrissy? Take a bow sir. You've now exposed yourself to the suggestion that you are willing to allow Iraq go down in flames as long as Democrats can gain politically from it in an election year. Any of you people who think that Democrats are going to somehow be smelling roses in November are kidding yourselves when the most prominent among you are begging, pleading and praying for our action in the Middle East to fail. That suuuure is going to be buying you votes, baby! P.S. I'm already deep in your squishy grey matter between your ears, lefties. Iraq is not a failure and won't be unless we do what you want, which is to give up. Of course, there is no meaningful public support for a pullout so you just might have to find a "sympathetic" judge to rule in your favor somehow suggesting that war is unconstitutional!
I actually pity the Democrats lately, because the DNC and the liberal bankroll has no idea how to handle itself right now. Say what you want, but Republicans are immeasurably better than liberals at political strategy. Admittedly this is the time where Democrats could clearly make a case to the American people that just might make a difference in November. Instead, during the darkest hours for the RNC, its clear that a) the likely Democratic nominee in '08 won't win a general election, b) nobody on DNC side is suggesting a new or innovative idea that voters would agree on with respect to how to handle national security that would be different from the Republicans, c) there is no apparent strategy or platform for the '06 elections other than what Carville and Begala are amusingly suggesting - "Bash Bush!!!"
Lastly, my dear friends, many of whom may be incensed by my right-leaning, well articulated sensibilities at this point in this journal post. You know that this is all in good fun and I love my leftie friends, but you have to admit that its hard to be a credible liberal when you get your news from a fake news show, or in the case of NPR's Nina Totenburg when she was on "Inside Washington" recently, you say that you don't root for Americans to win medals at the Olympics and that the Salt Lake Games were somehow spoiled by American "nationalism." Well gee, apparently rooting for your country during the Olympics is now a crime!
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