Tuesday, September 28, 2004

Four more years?

Friday, September 24, 2004

Political discussion in 2004 America

Monday, September 20, 2004

What's wrong with the press?

David Corn explains what's wrong with the press:

On a Washington street corner, he now asked me how he had done. You have a tough job, I responded. The Bush campaign has succeeded in convincing the mainstream media that the key question is, what is Kerry's plan for Iraq? Not, say, what is Bush's plan for Iraq? If Kerry is so fortunate to win on November 2, he won't take office until January 20, and the situation in Iraq could be dramatically different. Any specific plan he tossed out now could be--and probably would be--totally irrelevant at that point. Yet Republicans and echo-chamber reporters keep asking Kerry to state precisely how he would undo Bush's mess.

"I have two young daughters at home," I said to this Kerry aide. "If one takes a glass jar and throws it on the ground of their bedroom and smashes it into thousands of pieces, I don't point my finger at the other one and say, 'Okay, what's your plan for cleaning this up.'"

OK, if you're a member of the media, you do just that!

Sunday, September 19, 2004

"Fog of War"

Watched the Robert McNamara documentary "Fog of War". It was not what I expected. Instead of an extended one-on-one interview, with the interviewer, McNamara's comments were interlaced with film footage of his involvement with strategic bombing during World War II, his work at Ford Motor Company, and his activities while Secretary of State.

Long ago, if I had only the one word to describe McNamara, the word was "manipulative". The film reinforced that insight. As he notes, he never answered reporters' questions, only his own. Like the girl with the curl, when his motives were pure, they were powerfully pure. And when they were bad, well....

His comments on the Tonkin Gulf resolution brought back memories of the events leading up to Iraq War II. For that and many other reasons, high school American history courses should include the film and some outside reading on Vietnam. After all, high schoolers are the ones subject to the draft.

Mission Accomplished?

The British Army is to start pulling troops out of Iraq next month despite the deteriorating security situation in much of the country, The Observer has learnt.

The main British combat force in Iraq, about 5,000-strong, will be reduced by around a third by the end of October during a routine rotation of units.

The news came amid another day of mayhem in Iraq, which saw a suicide bomber kill at least 23 people and injure 53 in the northern city of Kirkuk. The victims were queueing to join Iraq's National Guard.

More than 200 people were killed last week in one of the bloodiest weeks since last year's invasion, strengthening impressions that the country is spinning out of control.

BushCo has 40+ days to fool voters or face defeat. It could be a challenge. The administration's October surprize had better be good.

Thursday, September 16, 2004

Back again...sort of....

I've been busy with children and publication of a 300+ page report, but I should be back with more soon.

In the meanwhile, I recommend two blogs:

Michael Berube -- a hockey playing college professor who travels near the vortex of the political storms on the right...only to escape every time.

James Wolcott -- one of the best writers on the planet. His recent column on Kitty Kelley's tour promoting her story of the Bush family included the following:

Brown at least wasn't a snitty little twit, like the CNN interviewer this morning whose name, I believe, is Heidi Hairdo. From the outset her tone was brisk, assistant district-attorneyish, and yet schoolgirlishly naive, as when she couldn't understand why anyone would be "afraid" of the Bushes and Kelley laughed in snorting disbelief, as if she had to explain the facts of life to Miss Snippy.

Heidi Hairdo, like some of the other interviewers, seem to keep up an invisible cordon sanitarire, a starchy, disdainful discomfort at having to share the set with an author so disreputable and, oh dear, tacky. This from people who fawn over every narcissistic piece of Hollywood horseflesh making the rounds to promote their latest lousy movie.

What's clear is that the news media are uncomfortable with someone investigating the arrogant and disturbing patterns of behavior in the Bush dynasty. They can't ignore Kitty Kelley, but they want to keep her in her litter box. But she's a tiny tigress, and will not be contained.

There's more where that came from! Go read.

US fatalities in Iraq didn't stop at 1000....

...although news coverage has.

Sunday, September 05, 2004

A poem for the times


Rise like Lions after slumber
In unvanquishable number –
Shake your chains to earth like dew
Which in sleep had fallen on you –
Ye are many – they are few.

It's a long, long time from Labor Day to November

So quit whining about the bias political polls and media coverage and do something every day to help get John Kerry elected. Talk to your family, friends and colleagues. Ask them to vote. Get them the information they need to make an informed decision. Send money to the campaign. Volunteer.

And quit whining!