Monday, January 31, 2005

This Just In:

Robert Fisk, reporter for The London Independent, reports on Air America Radio points out that, from his personal observations in Iraq, most Iraqis thought they were voting for an end to US occupation! I haven't heard this reported elsewhere, and so don't fully believe it until I see more sources, but as Mr. Fisk puts it, the general Sunni attitude is to resist US occupation by insurrection, the general Shi'ite is to end it by going to the voting booth and voting us out.

Perhaps I'm missing something here, or Mr. Fisk is not entirely accurate, but this is a dramatic statement, especially considering the recent US tongue-twisting:

"The New York Times leads with a newsless sitdown with President Bush, who said the U.S. would pull out of Iraq if the new government asks, which he said it won't. (And he's probably right.) Former Secretary of State Powell made the same semi-offer a few months ago, as did former Iraq boss Paul Bremer. Anyway, Bush "appeared more relaxed than he was in August, when he was last interviewed by the Times, in a changing area off a men's room.""

(Today's Paper's,, Jan. 28 2005)

Oh, yeah, this is bad too...

The Bush Regime (as Mike Malloy aptly calls it) has found a NEW way to be thoughtless. Priceless in its horribleness.

From last week's Today's Papers on Slate

"Auschwitz, Lambeau Field, same deal... Vice President Cheney was at Auschwitz to mark the 60th anniversary of its liberation. "He was dressed in the kind of attire one typically wears to operate a snow blower," says Post fashionista Robin Givhan. "Like other attendees, the vice president was wearing a hat. But it was not a fedora or a Stetson or a fur hat or any kind of hat that one might wear to a memorial service as the representative of one's country. Instead, it was a knit ski cap. It is also worth mentioning that Cheney was wearing hiking boots -- thick, brown, lace-up ones. [See the] Requisite, pricless photo."

(bangs head against keyboard again)

Media BS: Can you spot the Media Bias?

Hey all, this is still a busy year for J, trying to catch up on things that should've been done last year, so sorry for the lackluster (er, nonexistent) updates. Maybe this has just given all of my many, many (let's see, one, two, er, three...) fans time to catch up on their J Back-Issues.

Any case, today's ever so brief taste of J's return is to be found here. Can you detect the subtlely hidden CNN bias? Eh? Eeeeeh?

1) Identify the bias. Is it liberal? Is it conservative? Is it sensationalist? Is is Kiss-Ass?

2) Did you answer Conservative/Kiss-Ass? No? Be sure to show your work.

3) The answer is Conservative Kiss-Ass Bias. This is true.


1) "Since the 2001 attacks, the staunchly conservative Ashcroft has been vilified by political opponents, civil liberties groups and privacy advocates for pushing controversial counterterrorism policies, which critics say undermine freedoms."

Vilified? Perhaps, perhaps not -- but isn't this a, say, purely subjective judgement? Granted, anyone who knows J knows that I don't believe in purely "objective" news (as in, it doesn't exist and instead of trying the News Media should collect the best information available, and make as best they can conclusions to the public, showing the process of getting there -- classic examples include Global Climate Change -- He Said She Said "fair" coverage of "both sides" obscures the fact that a vast majority of scientists credit that the evidence for GCC is solid, including conservative DoD consultants, report here).

What was I talking about -- oh, yes, so, "vilified" is not something that is easily defended as some kind of objective judgement. They continue to say: "which critics say undermine freedoms. They include the Patriot Act, which bolstered FBI surveillance and law enforcement powers in terror cases; increased use of material witness warrants to hold suspects incommunicado for months; and secret proceedings in immigration cases. Ashcroft made no apology for his actions, saying he has enjoyed full support from President Bush."

2) Surely, you say, these statements are ok. Well, maybe -- but to be even marginally low-CNN-standards-meeting, they should, you know, mention why Ashie's opponents, you know, oppose him, cuz you know, maybe, just *maybe* they have a point (or points).

3) "The president understands that this is almost mission impossible, to keep winning every day," he said."
Nov. 9, 2004: "The objective of securing the safety of Americans from crime and terror has been achieved." (free subscription required) (also: "I have handwritten this letter so its confidentiality can be maintained until the appropriate arrangements mentioned above can be made." huh? As Lizz Winstead of AARadio asked, "He does realize that we can photocopy things now, doesn't he?" -- however it happened, handwriting didn't stop the release of his letter very promptly...)

Sigh. The whole thing is Crap-Tastic. It goes on ""Rights have not been infringed. Human dignity has not suffered. It's been enhanced and it has not carried a cost or toll on the civil liberties of America," Ashcroft said." It hasn't carried *any* cost or toll? That's AMAZING! There IS a free lunch!!!!

"More than 375 people have been charged in terror-related prosecutions in the United States since the 2001 attacks, with 195 either convicted or entering guilty pleas." Heaven forbid we mention, say, the 0 (zero) convictions for terrorist *acts*, but rather "some convictions under a questionable new law prohibiting Americans from offering 'material support' to foreign based terrorists", and in fact "as David Cole points out here, Ashcroft is now zero for 5,000, in that the Justice Department has detained 5,000 people on grounds that they are somehow connected to terrorism—and convicted none."

4) Does anyone else count detaining 5,000 people without any convictions, in many cases without charges or on marginal, misdemeanor-type immigration or material witness charges, as perhaps an "infringement" of "rights" or that perhaps it has caused "human dignity" to "suffer"?

5) (bangs head against keyboard)

6) Air America's Unfiltered is reporting that apparently Condi Rice and Sen. Biden had a meeting, a luncheon, to talk about poverty in, I think, the Islamic World that featured Wine and Shellfish -- apparently, most all of the food had to be taken back off the table and all of the US diplomatic staff "smacked upside the head". (I may have made that last part up.)

Until later meninos,


Monday, January 24, 2005

Blood yet runs in my veins

Angry, sarcastic, biting, and perhaps a bit debonair blood. Blood that has been traveling through many lands and working on many things.

In other words, stay tuned, keep clicking to the blog and I'll try and make it worth the energy of briefly tensing those muscles and tendons in your fingers that rest atop your keyboard.

Many things are afoot, and many words will soon hopefully be afoot to make fun of, laud, or criticize some of these things.