Blog Tools
Edit your Blog
Build a Blog
View Profile
24 Jan, 05 > 30 Jan, 05
17 Jan, 05 > 23 Jan, 05
10 Jan, 05 > 16 Jan, 05
3 Jan, 05 > 9 Jan, 05
20 Dec, 04 > 26 Dec, 04
13 Dec, 04 > 19 Dec, 04
6 Dec, 04 > 12 Dec, 04
29 Nov, 04 > 5 Dec, 04
15 Nov, 04 > 21 Nov, 04
8 Nov, 04 > 14 Nov, 04
1 Nov, 04 > 7 Nov, 04
25 Oct, 04 > 31 Oct, 04
18 Oct, 04 > 24 Oct, 04
11 Oct, 04 > 17 Oct, 04
4 Oct, 04 > 10 Oct, 04
27 Sep, 04 > 3 Oct, 04
20 Sep, 04 > 26 Sep, 04
13 Sep, 04 > 19 Sep, 04
6 Sep, 04 > 12 Sep, 04
30 Aug, 04 > 5 Sep, 04
23 Aug, 04 > 29 Aug, 04
16 Aug, 04 > 22 Aug, 04
9 Aug, 04 > 15 Aug, 04
2 Aug, 04 > 8 Aug, 04
26 Jul, 04 > 1 Aug, 04
19 Jul, 04 > 25 Jul, 04
12 Jul, 04 > 18 Jul, 04
5 Jul, 04 > 11 Jul, 04
28 Jun, 04 > 4 Jul, 04
21 Jun, 04 > 27 Jun, 04
7 Jun, 04 > 13 Jun, 04
31 May, 04 > 6 Jun, 04
24 May, 04 > 30 May, 04
17 May, 04 > 23 May, 04
10 May, 04 > 16 May, 04
3 May, 04 > 9 May, 04
26 Apr, 04 > 2 May, 04
19 Apr, 04 > 25 Apr, 04
12 Apr, 04 > 18 Apr, 04
5 Apr, 04 > 11 Apr, 04
29 Mar, 04 > 4 Apr, 04
22 Mar, 04 > 28 Mar, 04
15 Mar, 04 > 21 Mar, 04
8 Mar, 04 > 14 Mar, 04
1 Mar, 04 > 7 Mar, 04
23 Feb, 04 > 29 Feb, 04
16 Feb, 04 > 22 Feb, 04
9 Feb, 04 > 15 Feb, 04
2 Feb, 04 > 8 Feb, 04
26 Jan, 04 > 1 Feb, 04
19 Jan, 04 > 25 Jan, 04
12 Jan, 04 > 18 Jan, 04
5 Jan, 04 > 11 Jan, 04
29 Dec, 03 > 4 Jan, 04
22 Dec, 03 > 28 Dec, 03
15 Dec, 03 > 21 Dec, 03
8 Dec, 03 > 14 Dec, 03
1 Dec, 03 > 7 Dec, 03
24 Nov, 03 > 30 Nov, 03
17 Nov, 03 > 23 Nov, 03
10 Nov, 03 > 16 Nov, 03
3 Nov, 03 > 9 Nov, 03
27 Oct, 03 > 2 Nov, 03
20 Oct, 03 > 26 Oct, 03
You are not logged in. Log in
Entries by Topic
All topics  «
Step off, old man!
Sunday, 8 August 2004
Iraq update
* When I woke up this morning, I flipped on CNN. There was a story about woman who played college hoops for Notre Dame and was noted for her left-handed moves. She went in the army and got her left arm blown off. They showed her with a prosthesis, practicing in the gym, using her right hand. I couldn't watch the whole thing. It was too depressing. God bless her.

* This comes from the newspaper "The Oregonian." It shows you just how foolish we were to think we were going to go in and change a country's culture and makeup with military force. It appears Saddam's torturers have been replaced with a new regime of torturers. Here it is:

BAGHDAD - The national guardsman peering through the long-range scope of his rifle was startled by what he saw unfolding in the walled compound below.

From his post several stories above ground level, he watched as men in plainclothes beat blind folded and bound prisoners in the enclosed grounds of the Iraqi Interior Ministry.

He immediately radioed for help. Soon after, a team of Oregon Army National Guard soldiers swept into the yard and found dozens of Iraqi detainees who said they had been beaten, starved and deprived of water for three days.

In a nearby building, the soldiers counted dozens more prisoners and what appeared to be torture devices - metal rods, rubber hoses, electrical wires and bottles of chemicals. Many of the Iraqis, including one identified as a 14-year-old boy, had fresh welts and bruises across their back and legs.

The soldiers disarmed the Iraqi jailers, moved the prisoners into the shade, released their handcuffs and administered first aid. Lt. Col. Daniel Hendrickson of Albany, Ore., the highest ranking American at the scene, radioed for instructions.

But in a move that frustrated and infuriated the guardsmen, Hendrickson's superior officers told him to return the prisoners to their abusers and immediately withdraw. It was June 29 - Iraq's first official day as a sovereign country since the U.S. invasion.

The incident, the first known case of human rights abuses in newly sovereign Iraq, is at the heart of the American dilemma here.

In handing over power, U.S. officials gave Iraqis authority to run their own institutions - even if they made mistakes. But officials understand that the United States will be held responsible when the new Iraqi authorities stumble.

"Iraqis want us to respect their sovereignty, but the problem is we will be blamed for leaving the fox in charge of the henhouse," said Michael Rubin, a former adviser to the interim Iraqi government who isnow at the American Enterprise Institute. "We did not generally put good people in

Posted by brettdavey at 8:00 AM EDT
Post Comment | Permalink
Saturday, 7 August 2004
Steve Earle rules...
I went to the Newport Folk Festival today. Mostly, I went to see Lucinda Williams and Steve Earle. OK, mostly I went to see Steve Earle, who is my favorite living artist. (Otis Redding is my favorite non-living artist.)

Steve Earle played solo acoustic guitar with harmonica. He started off with a song off his new CD "The Revolution Starts Now..." which is due out anyday now. I'd never heard any of it since it's not the kind of album to get any airplay. Anyway, these were the first lyrics he sang:

"Fuck the FCC
Fuck the FBI
Fuck the CIA
Livin' in the motherfuckin' USA ..."

The crowd went nuts. It was awesome. He also got called out for an encore, which was "Copperhead Road." If you're a Steve Earle fan, you know there is no way for that song not to kick ass.

Posted by brettdavey at 7:11 PM EDT
Post Comment | Permalink
The great uniter speaks on affirmative action
I know some people like the common folks touch of President Bush but to see this man in an unscripted moment in front of a real audience is truly frightening. And I'm not talking about his "Our enemies are innovative and resourceful, and so are we. They never stop thinking about new ways to harm our country and our people and neither do we..." comment either.

If you saw the Q&A the President conducted on Friday in front of a group of minority journalists, you know how bad it is.

Whenever I hear about Bush opposing affirmative action, I always think, "Hey, hammerhead, you couldn't get into the University of Texas law school on your own but you got into Harvard Business School. And Yale too. Gee, think your family name had anything to do with it? What's that, if not affirmative action for dim rich people?"

But here comes the great uniter with his answer about legacies and affirmative action. I saw the speech and when Bush answered the question about affirmative action, the crowd started laughing.

Not with him, either.

This is from the AP wire story:

"President Bush said Friday he opposes the use of a family history at colleges or universities as a factor in determining admission. Bush stated his position to what's known as "legacy" in response to a question during a Washington forum for minority journalists called Unity 2004. He was asked, "Colleges should get rid of legacy?"

Bush responded, "Well I think so, yes. I think it ought to be based upon merit."

Under legacy programs, applicants are given an advantage if their parents or grandparents attended the school. Bush, a third-generation graduate of Yale University, joked about his own legacy.

"Well, in my case, I had to knock on a lot of doors to follow the old man's footsteps," he said to laughter.

Bush's remark came as he was being grilled about his opposition to affirmative action programs that consider race as a factor for admission, particularly through quota systems. Bush said admission should be based "on merit."

Bush has not previously expressed opposition to the use of family lineage at a university to help admission. In a lengthy exchange with the journalist, Bush said there should be no "special exception for certain people."

He expressed his support for diversity. While Bush clearly stated his opposition to quotas, he also suggested that he was not opposed to affirmative action. But he didn't explain what the distinction was.

"I support college affirmatively taking action to get more minorities in their school," Bush said as the audience laughed.

You had to see it. Really.

Posted by brettdavey at 9:03 AM EDT
Updated: Saturday, 7 August 2004 9:06 AM EDT
Post Comment | Permalink
Friday, 6 August 2004
Change of heart
Good to see the backlash against the group of vets who are saying Kerry didn't deserve recognition for his service. Even Bill O'Reilly blasted them on TV last night.

Now, it seems like one member of the group is having a change of heart. This is from today's Boston Globe.

"A week after Senator John F. Kerry heralded his wartime experience by surrounding himself at the Democratic convention with his Vietnam ''Band of Brothers," a separate group of veterans has launched a television ad campaign and a book that questions the basis for some of Kerry's combat medals.

But yesterday, a key figure in the anti-Kerry campaign, Kerry's former commanding officer, backed off one of the key contentions. Lieutenant Commander George Elliott said in an interview that he had made a ''terrible mistake" in signing an affidavit that suggests Kerry did not deserve the Silver Star -- one of the main allegations in the book. The affidavit was given to The Boston Globe by the anti-Kerry group to justify assertions in their ad and book.

Elliott is quoted as saying that Kerry ''lied about what occurred in Vietnam . . . for example, in connection with his Silver Star, I was never informed that he had simply shot a wounded, fleeing Viet Cong in the back."

The statement refers to an episode in which Kerry killed a Viet Cong soldier who had been carrying a rocket launcher, part of a chain of events that formed the basis of his Silver Star. Over time, some Kerry critics have questioned whether the soldier posed a danger to Kerry's crew. Crew members have said Kerry's actions saved their lives.

Yesterday, reached at his home, Elliott said he regretted signing the affidavit and said he still thinks Kerry deserved the Silver Star.

''I still don't think he shot the guy in the back," Elliott said. ''It was a terrible mistake probably for me to sign the affidavit with those words. I'm the one in trouble here."

Elliott said he was no under personal or political pressure to sign the statement, but he did feel ''time pressure" from those involved in the book. ''That's no excuse," Elliott said. ''I knew it was wrong . . . In a hurry I signed it and faxed it back. That was a mistake."

Posted by brettdavey at 9:23 AM EDT
Post Comment | Permalink
Thursday, 5 August 2004
Gee, no shit, John...
This is why I don't understand why McCain is supporting Bush. They did the same thing to him, a fellow Republican, in 2000. Did he think they wouldn't do it to Kerry? This story is from

WASHINGTON - Republican Sen. John McCain, a former prisoner of war in Vietnam, called an ad criticizing John Kerry's military service "dishonest and dishonorable" and urged the White House on Thursday to condemn it as well.

The White House declined.

"It was the same kind of deal that was pulled on me," McCain said in an interview with The Associated Press, comparing the anti-Kerry ad to tactics in his bitter Republican primary fight with President Bush.

The 60-second ad features Vietnam veterans who accuse the Democratic presidential nominee of lying about his decorated Vietnam War record and betraying his fellow veterans by later opposing the conflict.

"When the chips were down, you could not count on John Kerry," one of the veterans, Larry Thurlow, says in the ad. Thurlow didn't serve on Kerry's swiftboat, but says he witnessed the events that led to Kerry winning a Bronze Star and the last of his three Purple Hearts. Kerry's crewmates support the candidate and call him a hero.

The ad, scheduled to air in a few markets in Ohio, West Virginia and Wisconsin, was produced by Stevens, Reed, Curcio and Potham, the same team that produced McCain's ads in 2000.

"I wish they hadn't done it," McCain said of his former advisers. "I don't know if they knew all the facts."

Asked if the White House knew about the ad or helped find financing for it, McCain said, "I hope not, but I don't know. But I think the Bush campaign should specifically condemn the ad."

McCain, chairman of Bush's campaign in Arizona, later said the Bush campaign has denied any involvement and added, "I can't believe the president would pull such a cheap stunt."

White House spokesman Scott McClellan declined to condemn the ad. He did denounce the proliferation of spending by independent groups, such as the anti-Kerry veterans organization, that are playing on both sides of the political fence.

Posted by brettdavey at 2:45 PM EDT
Post Comment | Permalink
Wednesday, 4 August 2004
Hold that alert!
A lot of people jumped on Howard Dean for saying the heightened terror alerts may have been politically motivated. But as usual, the media missed the most important part of what was said. Here it is:

"If this information was three years old, and if this Al Qaeda operative, the most recent capture, was on July 13, that means that this administration knew about this at least three weeks ago, that the information was three years old, that they could have chosen any date they wanted to reveal this to the public," Dean said on MSNBC. "Isn't it unusual they might choose two days after the Democratic National Convention, when John Kerry was in the middle of his bounce?"

Exactly. If it was so urgent that the public have this information, why wasn't it released within a few days of its discovery? Probably the same reason the record deficit wasn't announced until the Friday after the Democratic convention.

Posted by brettdavey at 8:17 AM EDT
Post Comment | Permalink
Protest this...
I wrote into yesterday to protest a story they wrote that tried to attach some importance to the hecklers that have been confronting Kerry on the campaign trail.

Gee, maybe there are no hecklers for Bush and Cheney because they a) only appear before military audiences; b) only appear before Republican audiences; or c) only appear before audiences who sign a loyalty oath.

The last one took place at a Cheney campaign rally. A loyalty oath? Wow.

Yesterday, Cheney blamed Democrats, and Kerry and Edwards specifically, for rising gasoline prices because they didn't sign on for the Administration's energy plan. Of course, this is the same plan that was formulated behind closed doors with energy lobbyists. But Dick won't tell us who was at those meetings. It's only our energy policy, y'know?

When Edwards debates Cheney, he should ask him flat-out, "Who was on your energy task force? Was someone from Enron there? Was Ken Lay there? Don't the American people have a right to know who is writing their energy policy?"

Posted by brettdavey at 7:54 AM EDT
Post Comment | Permalink
Tuesday, 3 August 2004
Who owns the media?
All this liberal media stuff is a laugh. The real key is who owns the media. If they're happy with the tax breaks and policy they're getting, they're going to skew the coverage towards that candidate.

This comes It's scary and depressing.

"So ya think we have a "free press" eh? Check out who owns who, and who owns what you think.......

GENERAL ELECTRIC --(donated 1.1 million to GW Bush for his 2000 election campaign)

Television Holdings:
* NBC: includes 13 stations, 28% of US households.
* NBC Network News: The Today Show, Nightly News with Tom Brokaw, Meet the Press, Dateline NBC, NBC News at Sunrise.
* CNBC business television; MSNBC 24-hour cable and Internet news service (co-owned by NBC and Microsoft); Court TV (co-owned with Time Warner), Bravo (50%), A&E (25%), History Channel (25%).
The "MS" in MSNBC means Microsoft
The same Microsoft that donated 2.4 million to get GW bush elected.

Other Holdings:
* GE Consumer Electronics.
* GE Power Systems: produces turbines for nuclear reactors and power plants.
* GE Plastics: produces military hardware and nuclear power equipment.
* GE Transportation Systems: runs diesel and electric trains.

Westinghouse Electric Company, part of the Nuclear Utilities Business Group of British Nuclear Fuels (BNFL) whos #1 on the Board of Directors? None other than: Frank Carlucci (of the Carlyle Group)

Television Holdings:
* CBS: includes 14 stations and over 200 affiliates in the US.
* CBS Network News: 60 minutes, 48 hours, CBS Evening News with Dan Rather, CBS Morning News, Up to the Minute.
* Country Music Television, The Nashville Network, 2 regional sports networks.
* Group W Satellite Communications.
Other Holdings:
* Westinghouse Electric Company: provides services to the nuclear power industry.
* Westinghouse Government Environmental Services Company: disposes of nuclear and hazardous wastes. Also operates 4 government-owned nuclear power plants in the US.
* Energy Systems: provides nuclear power plant design and maintenance.
Television Holdings:
* Paramount Television, Spelling Television, MTV, VH-1, Showtime, The Movie Channel, UPN (joint owner), Nickelodeon, Comedy Central, Sundance Channel (joint owner), Flix.
* 20 major market US stations.
Media Holdings:
* Paramount Pictures, Paramount Home Video, Blockbuster Video, Famous Players Theatres, Paramount Parks.
* Simon & Schuster Publishing.
DISNEY / ABC / CAP (donated 640 thousand to GW's 2000 campaign)
Television Holdings:
* ABC: includes 10 stations, 24% of US households.
* ABC Network News: Prime Time Live, Nightline, 20/20, Good Morning America.
* ESPN, Lifetime Television (50%), as well as minority holdings in A&E, History Channel and E!
* Disney Channel/Disney Television, Touchtone Television.
Media Holdings:
* Miramax, Touchtone Pictures.
* Magazines: Jane, Los Angeles Magazine, W, Discover.
* 3 music labels, 11 major local newspapers.
* Hyperion book publishers.
* Infoseek Internet search engine (43%).
Other Holdings:
* Sid R. Bass (major shares) crude oil and gas.
* All Disney Theme Parks, Walt Disney Cruise Lines.

TIME-WARNER TBS - AOL (donated 1.6 million to GW's 2000 campaign)
America Online (AOL) acquired Time Warner-the largest merger in corporate history.
Television Holdings:
* CNN, HBO, Cinemax, TBS Superstation, Turner Network Television, Turner Classic Movies, Warner Brothers Television, Cartoon Network, Sega Channel, TNT, Comedy Central (50%), E! (49%), Court TV (50%).
* Largest owner of cable systems in the US with an estimated 13 million subscribers.
Media Holdings:
* HBO Independent Productions, Warner Home Video, New Line Cinema, Castle Rock, Looney Tunes, Hanna-Barbera.
* Music: Atlantic, Elektra, Rhino, Sire, Warner Bros. Records, EMI, WEA, Sub Pop (distribution) = the world's largest music company.
* 33 magazines including Time, Sports Illustrated, People, In Style, Fortune, Book of the Month Club, Entertainment Weekly, Life, DC Comics (50%), and MAD Magazine.
Other Holdings:
* Sports: The Atlanta Braves, The Atlanta Hawks, World Championship Wrestling.
NEWS CORPORATION LTD. / FOX NETWORKS (Rupert Murdoch) (donations see bottom note)
Television Holdings:
* Fox Television: includes 22 stations, 50% of US households.
* Fox International: extensive worldwide cable and satellite networks include British Sky Broadcasting (40%); VOX, Germany (49.9%); Canal Fox, Latin America; FOXTEL, Australia (50%); STAR TV, Asia; IskyB, India; Bahasa Programming Ltd., Indonesia (50%); and News Broadcasting, Japan (80%).
* The Golf Channel (33%).
* Twentieth Century Fox, Fox Searchlight.
* 132 newspapers (113 in Australia alone) including the New York Post, the London Times and The Australian.
* 25 magazines including TV Guide and The Weekly Standard.
* HarperCollins books.
* Sports: LA Dodgers, LA Kings, LA Lakers, National Rugby League.
* Ansett Australia airlines, Ansett New Zealand airlines.
* Rupert Murdoch: Board of Directors, Philip Morris (USA).

*(Phillip Morris donated 2.9 million to George W Bush in 2000)*

Posted by brettdavey at 9:02 AM EDT
Post Comment | Permalink
Have no fear...
Intentionally or not, the terror alert based on three year old information garnered impressive airtime all day yesterday and on the morning shows. Hey, it's all Bush has. His new motto should be: "I have nothing to fear, but the lack of fear."

If the American people aren't afraid, he has no chance.

So now we're getting polls out the wazoo. What do they mean? Not much. Here's an analysis of the electoral college from a newspaper in South Carolina.

"The Democrats are in a strong position to regain the White House in 2004. Take a glance at the Electoral College map. No matter how you slice it, the Democrats have the advantage.

"If you look at the states the Democrats carried in the last three presidential elections, that's 260 electoral votes," says Rice University political scientist Earl Black.

It takes 270 votes to win.

"The Democrats are in a much stronger position today than they were through the 1980s," Black says.
Their strength is in the Northeast, on the Pacific Coast and in the Great Lakes states of the industrial Midwest. Bill Clinton carried those three clusters in 1992 and 1996, and Al Gore won them in 2000.

"Basically, what Republicans need to do is to find a way to come back in the industrial Northeast," Black says. "That's where they have their greatest difficulty."

The GOP also needs to continue to hold onto its solid South, including Florida. In the 2000 election, Bush won 29 states with 271 electoral votes. Gore took 21 states, including the District of Columbia, with 267 votes. It was the closest presidential election in history.

To win a second term, Bush must keep everything he won in 2000. Right now, that's highly doubtful. Winning West Virginia again is problematic. So is New Hampshire. That's a loss of nine electoral votes for Bush, and he's also trailing in other states he carried in 2000.

Among them is Ohio, a critical state. If Bush loses Ohio, the party's over. The Democrats' standing in the Electoral College has been strengthened considerably by the emergence of California as a solid Democratic state.

Republicans last carried it in 1988. "When you look at the Northeast, it is probably the most solid region for any party, probably more solid for the Democrats than the South is for Republicans," Black says.

Democratic presidential nominee John Kerry is the candidate of the Northeast. The Bush challenge in 2004 is this: Win every Southern state, including Florida, carry the Rocky Mountain and Midwestern states, where Republicans have been very successful, and recapture those states in the upper Midwest that Gore won narrowly in 2000. Minnesota will be one target.

"Republicans do not have the advantage in the Electoral College they had through 1988," Black says. Democrats say they are not conceding any region to the Republicans, including the South.

"Our strategy has been to put as much pressure on President Bush as we can," says Steve Elmendorf, Kerry's deputy campaign manager. "It's hard to do that if we're not competitive in the South."

Chad Clanton, a senior adviser to Kerry, says the selection of U.S. Sen. John Edwards of North Carolina to be Kerry's running mate should put to rest questions about the campaign's commitment to the South.

Still, Black says, "It is hard for me to see Kerry winning Southern states based on his liberal votes."

Bush carried South Carolina in 2000 with 57 percent of the vote to Gore's 43 percent. And Bush is heavily favored to win the Palmetto State again.

Could Kerry win without the South? "Yes," Black says. "But he would need 70 percent of the Electoral College vote outside the South. It certainly can be done."

The big problem for Republicans is that even after they secure the South and carry the Rocky Mountain states, they still fall short of 270 votes.

Advantage Kerry-Edwards.

Posted by brettdavey at 8:56 AM EDT
Post Comment | Permalink
Monday, 2 August 2004
Cheney's positive vision
This is kind of funny. It's from a Craig Kilborn monologue last week.

"Last night, wow, John Edwards delivered a positive message to America that 'Hope is on the way, hope is on the way!' And today, Dick Cheney replied, 'That is a lie. The world is a pit of misery and despair.'"

Posted by brettdavey at 10:45 AM EDT
Post Comment | Permalink

Newer | Latest | Older