Thursday, December 17, 2009

In Touting 'Climate Justice' Protesters, Networks Oblivious to Communist Participation |

THANK YOU, Brent Baker.

Yes, finally somebody has written what I've been saying, yelling back at my television and annoying anyone who would listen to me -- quick to spot a holstered sidearm but blind to the 'ol hammer and sickle.

Where are the media's questions that they asked of GOPers and conservatives: "How do you feel about these people ("scary people") involved in your rally, in your movement, in your cause.?"

Has someone ever asked Algore how he feels about the preponderance of Commies, Anti-Capitalists, and anarchists involved in HIS cause? Has anyone delved deeper into why that political stripe might be attracted to carbon emissions being controlled, penalized or limited?

This is very similar how the media never shows the Gay Solidarity Parades in NYC's Stonewall or San Fran's Castro districts anymore. Doesn't fit the script about mainstream. Instead, we get Ms & Ms Milquetoast getting married on the city hall steps.

Witch Twin Has the Toni?

I'm reminded of the line for the Austin Powers movie where Dr. Evil (no editorial comment, honest) attempts to ransom the world's countries for, (pinkie finger to lip),

"one-HUN-dred BILL-ion DOLLARS, brah, brah-ha, brah-ha-ha-ha-ha...."

Monday, December 07, 2009

Lining pockets with "Green" Money

My local newspaper reprinted an article from POLITICO about the curious connection between gold brokers and their advertisements on conservative talk shows. Basically, Glenn, Bill, both Michael s, Laura, Mark, G-man, etc., shilling for these companies that are dangerous to the gold markets when not out-right stealing money from the mouths of poor widows on pensions.

Here's my take:

There have been and will always be people of all stripes who don't read the fine print of what they're buying for many things, especially investments. But does that make it a Right-Wing Wacko cabal to manipulate the gold market?

These are ADVERTISERS and the celebrities and shows are COMMENTATORS. They are not "news" reporters/journalists and their product is not presented as unbiased news (unlike POLITICO). "Let the buyer beware" is no different for Gold than it is with GM cars, Citibank accounts, Goldman Sacks portfolios, or dare I say, an AARP membership. Sometimes you don't get what you expected. Howie Long isn't going to give me my $ back if I don't like my Chevy.

What's more brazen is that with this one article, POLITICO has invested more time and investigative energy into this straw dog controversy than it has directed at a real scandal, like ClimateGate.

Don't you think a certain politician has a financial interest in promoting the "sky is falling" AGM movement? His bloviations are accepted as "true" and reported as "news" because he won a couple non-science based popularity awards, yet he and others stand to gain considerably if certain laws are passed and policies adopted.

Will POLITICO look into his holdings and those of his firm? Such entanglements have numerous, deeper and more serious repercussions for us all than some Pennsylvania housewife not getting the number of shiny coins she expected.

As it appears on Politico

I found it was a much more interesting read when I recommended selected substitutions of mean, cruel conservative words with pure, wholesome, kind Progressive buzzwords. Here's my suggested re-write:

"For years a certain strain of progressive thought has held that there was one sure hedge against free market economies, domestic energy independence and conservative rule – global warming.

Now that belief has led to a kind of harmonic convergence between ideology and commerce.
Anyone tuning in to mainstream media or NBC News’ Today Show and CNN’s Anderson Cooper shows is bombarded by “news reports” for man made global warming, mainly in the form of data from UN-affiliated research at the Univ. of East Anglia, with reporters and anchors intoning that melting icecaps and marooned polar bears caused by fossil fuels, big business and western lifestyles are devastating the planet and making Kyoto and Copenhagen the “last best hopes” for the earth.

The dire tone sounded in the news often echo the occasionally apocalyptic climatologist’s forecasts of the shows’ guests, many of whom have investments or grant funding riding with the governments or UN agencies, appear in their Oscar-winning movies, or have had their researchers as experts to trash the global warming doubters course set by former President George Bush and congressional Republicans, and to preach the attractions of cap and trade. "

Right-wing talkers go for the gold - -

Interesting. If you change a word here or there, substituting the hated conservative labels and substituting them with liberal buzzwords, it's amazing what you get:

Right-wing talkers go for the gold - -

As it appears on Politico:
For years a certain strain of conservative thought has held that there was one sure hedge against economic depression, civil disorder and liberal rule – gold. Now that belief has led to a kind of harmonic convergence between ideology and commerce.

Anyone tuning in to conservative talk radio or Fox News’s Bill O’Reilly and Glenn Beck shows is bombarded by commercials for gold, mainly in the form of collectible coins, with announcers intoning that inflation and deficits caused by big government spending are devaluing the dollar and making gold the best investment money can buy.

The dire tone sounded in the ads often echo the occasionally apocalyptic economic forecasts of the shows’ hosts, many of whom have endorsement contracts with the gold retailers, appear in their ads, or have had their executives as guests to trash the economic course set by President Barack Obama and congressional Democrats, and to preach the attractions of gold.

Re-write with Selected Word Substitution
For years a certain strain of progressive thought has held that there was one sure hedge against free market economies, domestic energy independence and conservative rule – global warming. Now that belief has led to a kind of harmonic convergence between ideology and commerce.

Anyone tuning in to mainstream media or NBC News’ Today Show and CNN’s Anderson Cooper shows is bombarded by “news reports” for manmade global warming, mainly in the form of data from UN-affiliated research at the Univ. of East Anglia, with reporters and anchors intoning that melting icecaps and marooned polar bears caused by fossil fuels, big business and western lifestyles are devastating the planet and making Kyoto and Copenhagen the “last best hopes” for the earth.

The dire tone sounded in the news often echo the occasionally apocalyptic climatologist’s forecasts of the shows’ guests, many of whom have investments or grant funding riding with the governments or UN agencies, appear in their Oscar-winning movies, or have had their researchers as experts to trash the global warming doubters course set by former President George Bush and congressional Republicans, and to preach the attractions of cap and trade.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

The Most "Rusted" Name in News

"CNN Drops to Last Place Among Cable News Networks"

So reported the New York Times on Oct. 26.

The NY Times media writer (Bill Carter) might have his opinion as to what the ratings mean.

"The results demonstrate once more the apparent preference of viewers for opinion-oriented shows from the news networks in prime time."

If I may be so bold, perhaps -- just perhaps -- it could mean that they are just tired of CNN. (the audience gasps!) At least, this incarnation.

Whether that fatigue is better described by "weariness" or "wariness" is the real predicament for the network, because one condition is far easier to respond to than the other.

One is a change of personnel, and maybe a studio set. The other is a change in how they report the news and what news they decide to cover. (again, the audience gasps)

Why is it that when a new car design becomes so popular, it quickly attracts imitation (most sincerest form of flattery)? Why is it that a food flavor becomes discovered or developed -- like Chipotle today, or pesto years ago -- (mesquite was "all that" back in the day). And remember "Ice" beer? Heck, everybody had to hurry out one of those.

Except in news.

FOX comes along and consistently spanks every other (cable) news outlets and threatens even the Legacy Nets in viewship and certainly brand loyalty. And rather than check into what product FOX brings to market and learn why its popular (and dare I suggest, emulate it a bit), the competitors pronounce the numbers to be an aberration or blame the (sizable) audience as being "brainless, mind-numb robots," "unthinking Dittoheads," or as our dear POTUS recently described us, non-critical thinking automatons who "do as we're told."

Oh, that's right. The Left doesn't understand how markets work.

Friday, October 09, 2009

SNL must not be carried in Oslo....

Apparently Saturday Night Live isn't carried in Scandinavia.

Couple thoughts:
Maybe now we know why he hasn't made Afghanistan more of a priority. Talk to the General once and drag your feet just long enough until the announcement was made; will be kinda tough to increase the troop levels now, don't you think?
Next, I didn't think my regard for the Nobel process could get any lower after Jimmy and Al got theirs. Don't know how many houses Barry has built (without Rezko's help, that is) and I don't think he's won an Academy award for documentary film making. But he does deliver a darn fine teleprompter speech.
Apparently Nobel doesn't follow its own rules because at the time of the Feb. 1 nomination deadline, he'd only just been "immaculated" on Jan. 20. So they had just the first day signing of the "Close Gitmo" order (which hasn't happened yet and may not meet its deadline) and his Inauguration speech go base it on. His address to Joint session of congress ("We do not torture") didn't happen until later in Feb., and his Cairo University speech didn't happen until June.

Guess as long as you go around the world apologizing for America, the Nobel is yours.

Friday, October 02, 2009

Is today the day the US media suddenly notices the Emperor has no clothes?

That nobody in the audience swooned when he spoke should have been a hint. But will today's Olympic decision be the day that inquiring minds of the US media finally snap out of their self-induced, teenage girl crush on da Emperor to notice how he's dressed?

I can't decide if POTUS is a high-stakes gambler from the back rooms of smokey pool halls on Chi-Town's South Side or he trusts much his advisers waaaaay too much. (There's a third option I'd rather not ponder.)

It wasn't just that he & the Mrs. made the HIGHLY publicized trip to lobby the IOC, but he actually had much more involvement that hasn't yet been reported (no doubt to come out later after the "win" in a documentary or a TIME magazine exclusive to show how his diplomatic prowess and "behind-the-scenes" personal efficaciousness carried the day.) Don't know if that story will be allowed to come out.

The gamble was this: there IS a reason why sitting presidents don't tend to get hip-deep involved in the Olympic pitch business.
Nobody likes to lose on such a public stage, and on the WORLD stage to boot.

Editor's note: Lest I be accused of ripping off "The Master," he also mentioned this fact on his show while I was driving around shouting the same thing at the radio. Great minds do think alike ;-)

THUS, Did Barry roll the dice that the cult of personality he enjoys with the US media would sway the IOC; OR, was it his advisers who assured him that would be the case even in cold, gray Denmark?

If it's the former, he's been reading too much of his own press.
If it's the latter, it might be time to get some new advisers that are brave enough to tell him the one about the Emperor's new clothes.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Where have you gone Woodward and Bernstein?

OK so this story in the Washington Post today completely split my skull open.

ACORN Funded Political, For-Profit Efforts, Data Show
Actions Were Before Leadership Change

For starters: That sub-head cracks me up. Does that 'shake-up' make ACORN all better now or diminish the funny business in the past? That's like saying a convict's crimes occurred "... back when he was free and in public, not when he's in prison like he is now; when he gets out, all those crimes will never have happened."

Is it the Post's job to defend or give the Organization an "out" -- ("Oh, well, that explains it -- this happened BEFORE the fine people leading it now were in control.") Do you think that tactic would work for a story on executives at GM, AIG or several certain large banks?

The question I'd love to ask (and I did) the editors is much more important and fundamental: Where was the WashPost when all this was going down, "before the leadership shake-up" last year? The paper that gave us Woodward and Bernstein; this bastion of Journalism excellence; Protector of the Second Amendment and emissary of the Fourth Estate.

Why did it take an over-the-top laughable undercover sting operation done by two clumsy rank amateur “filmmakers” to finally break this story? How do WP (and The Gray Lady) feel about being scooped by a couple of pikers? [Speaking of which --where was "60 Minutes" when all this was going on? That program can trace back sign-in sheets and track down guys who remember where GWB was at Air National Guard meetings, but these two "documentary filmmakers" beat them to the ACORN story?]

Oh, right. That would have been inconvenient to the guy they were busy putting into office. (I still haven’t heard anyone ask POTUS if – like Rev. Wright’s church—he recalls seeing anything like this when he was working with ACORN as a lawyer. Or did he miss those sermons too?)

But I digress.

Next, when will the MSM stop prefacing all ACORN stories by mentioning how the Org has "long been a target of conservative ire".... What does that have to do with the story at this point? Apparently The Post doesn't realize that’s actually dissing itself by basically saying the GOP finally got "The Media" to pay attention to what they’ve saying for all those years but the MSM ignored?

Such slanted and irrelevant phrases do nothing but prejudice the reader to the facts of the article, signaling that somehow the larger story is diminished from REAL graft and corruption to be found somewhere else -- in a GOP pet project no doubt. Does the MSM mention that the ACLU has long been a "pain-in-the-ass" to the traditional values groups every time they bring suit? Please, at least keep it out of the first 3 paragraphs and attempt to look impartial.

Lastly, every indication is that this group did something funky with taxpayer money collected from Reps, Dems, Indies, and Non-Affiliated taxpayers. This article makes it seem like the "mean old GOP" is at it again -- just being mean for the sake of it because they lost the election and Obama can speak well.

If true, ALL US taxpayers were plucked and we all should be rightly outraged no matter who brought it to light.

Speaking of which -- what does this say about Dems who knew or surmised what was going on? Did NOBODY on that side of the isle have an inkling of this? Did The Ds just sit idly by and knowingly allow tax monies to be mishandled and/or possibly misappropriated because they knew it was going to benefit their party, their causes or their candidates?

What did they know and when did they know it?

Monday, September 21, 2009

The White-Washer Scandal (wait, can I say that?)

And now ..... (or more accurately, "... again") the NEA -- the National Endowment for the Arts -- is proud to bring you, the next scandal of the Obama Administration -- "White-washer." (Wait a minute, can I say that or does that make me a racist? Twice?)

"I don't know how many laws that breaks but I'm sure there are some."
Columnist George Will on "This Week"/ABC"

From the same people who brought you crucifixes dunked in urine jars as taxpayer supported important art, now comes "ACORN for the Arts Community."

NEW AUDIO Reveals White House Using NEA to Push Partisan Agenda

To those who think this is much ado about nothing, do I have to draw you a picture? You can't have a group of people largely beholden to government grants for their "work" white-washing the public airways, landscapes, museums, (and eventually schools) with partisan messages supporting their "employer" -- particularly when it's specifically devised to appear during and designed especially to (one-sidedly) influence public debate about a national issue.

Don't know art, but you know what you don't like? Then play a little game called, "Does it pass the Bush Test?"

Say for example, that BO inherited this secret art cabal from his predecessor (who, as we know, caused all of BO's problems wwnn ;-) who established it to "paint in a good light" (pun intended) HIS priorities -- the Iraq War, Second Amendment Rights, The Patriot Act, Pro-Life, etc.

Would not the Left be today going apoplectic, calling for Congressional hearings, asking for Independent Councils, and unleashing Eric Holder to prosecute the lawyers who OK'd the program?

The Bush Test also works in reverse.

When someday (hopefully sooner rather than later) another GOPer re-takes the Oval Office, would the Left be OK (and silent) if these same tactics are then adopted and re-directed to promote things counter to what they intended on the above phone call?

That's your answer.

Friday, September 18, 2009

If an ACORN falls in the woods

If an ACORN falls in the woods and the

ignore it, does it still get Federal funding?

I guess not.

(But to make up for lack of hard-hitting and timely news coverage, there's lots of stuff you can read about Teddy Kennedy....)

It's funny most every MSM story (now that word is out) include the facts that
1) Republicans have long been critical of the organization,
2) the people who shot the undercover footage were "conservative activists" and
3) FOX News has been airing the video a lot.

Do we know the perspective of the people who leaked the Abu Ghraib prison photos?
Who was the person who broke the Mark Sanford story?
And who where the two ABC/20/20 imposter's who took EMPLOYMENT and money while going undercover to expose butcher shop practices at Food Lion some years ago?

It doesn't matter because that was news. So is this. When you cause action on the floors of Congress without a police or government investigation, it's a pretty good sign this is a legit story.

What difference does it make if the undercover filmmaker was "conservative" -- do MSM describe Michael Moore as a "liberal documentarian?" (Maybe some do now, but during Fahrenheit 911 didn't.)

MSM should refer to the couple as "journalists" because they did their job and saved both Republican & Democrat taxpayers money wasted on this biased, corrupt and questionable organization.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Bad on the doorstep; couldn't take one more step

The other day (ironically, an online article) the current publisher of our daily newspaper "reached out" to readers to assure us that the paper "hears us." (In fact, he borrowed -- don't know if it was intentional but it was curious in its use -- one of POTUS' favorite little ditties -- the 'ol "We get it" exclamatory sentence.

While responding to reader feedback lamenting the lack of "good news" in the paper, the publisher "got" how readers felt this condition was a leading contributor to the decline of readership and civic engagement with the daily newspaper. Then comes the recent study by our friends at PEW chronicling how the once vaunted Journalistic reputation for accuracy have become sullied lo these last few years. (A little known fact: while desirable, finding the "truth" or "falsity" of a story has never been the overriding tenet of American journalism. It is accuracy that has long been the ultimate goal journalists seek. This will be "news" -- excuse the pun -- to most people who think getting out the truth is the primary goal; it was for me when I learned it.)

The decline of "Traditional" news in the face of the Online world shouldn't necessarily lead to the public smackdown journalism is getting (see recent PEW research on People & The Press).

Here’s a hint, Einsteins. It’s the product, not the format, that’s REALLY hastening mainstream media's decline and the profession's abysmal sad stature. Aside from News and Politics, what modern human endeavors can blame their demise on their audience/market rather than the enterprise itself?

  • "What do you mean you don't want healthcare? We're trying to get you free healthcare you rubes! Why are you fighting us; we're trying to give you something for nuthin'?"

Well, maybe: a) not as many as you thought want what you are selling, and/or b) maybe they want the product but don't care for the brand you're selling.

  • "People just aren't interested in the news anymore." "Folks don't care about the vaunted journalistic profession; we're having to become 'entertainers' to get people to watch/listen/read." “FOX is evil.” “Rush’s dittoheads don’t think.” “Glenn Beck’s army of robots.” “Oh woe is me!”

Whose fault was the Edsel? The consumers who hated the ugly thing or the Ford execs for green-lighting the loser? Like the government, have the media considered that maybe it’s THEIR product that's weak, needs to be improved or re-thought and not lay all the blame on consumers?

Other businesses have to face changing their products, why should the news be different?

[Answer--"news" purists can't stand the fact that they have operate as a business. Theirs is a higher calling, a Constitutionally protected role. Unlike, say free healthcare. Some in the media would probably be happy to take a government pay level salary to do what they do if it meant they could be free of the pesky "free market" thing that forces their company to turn a profit. But I digress.]

And when the media does make changes and things don’t improve (think CNN, or the disappearing newpaper sector), is it because the market is wrong or the changes/"improvements” made were off the mark?

Here's what I ask my "news" buddies:

When you cover a story about a half glass of milk, and you decide to write how it’s half-empty, you have made a biased decision to cover it in that way. Does that mean a story written about the same glass being half-full is wrong, erroneous, or “slanted” any more than your point of view?

It shouldn't. Both reports are "accurate" in that the glass is half-filled.

For far too long, the consumer has only been told about the half-empty point of view, even though some of them KNEW there must be a half-full side of the story.

All FOX has done is to report the other story left untouched by their competitors (i.e. the glass is half-full). People can – and do -- get the reports on the half-empty from some other place (MANY other places).

And that's the reason the FOX is eating your lunch.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

A Teachable Moment (last month)

Back in July, study results about the educational preparation of America's workforce came out. You probably didn't hear about it, because the national media didn't cover it. Apparently "school's out for the summer" applies to the news business, too. I Googled and Yahooed the report's title and three pages deep into both searches found the first media coverage was in "Industry Week."

It basically said what we pretty much all know -- our schools are failing pretty miserably when it comes to preparing kids to enter the workforce. But the good news is they CAN put a condom on a cucumber and have seen "An Inconvenient Truth." (OK I added the good news part.)

The report -- "The Ill-Prepared U.S. Workforce: Exploring the Challenges of Employer-Provided Workforce Readiness Training" -- was authored by some pretty respectable and basically non-partisan partners: Corporate Voices for Working Families; the American Society for Training & Development (ASTD); the Conference Board and the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM). The two professional societies were understandably interested that their members could go to their companies to get more $$$ for training these "skulls full of mush" as the "Great One" says. The Conference Board is certainly not what you'd call an anti-business organization, and CVWF has on its board a good cross-section of companies, Wall Street, and educational institutions.

But the point -- how lousy our schools are these days -- (as BAD as that IS) is not really the point of this particular blog. I see it as a teachable moment (pun intended) for the current healthcare debate.

I wonder if the current Administration and one-party power lock in Congress would attack with such fervent desire, point out faults with such vitriol and venom, propose such fundamental and far-reaching changes to "the present system" in order to overcome THIS "crisis" as they now do with healthcare?

  • Talk about something costing the country huge sums of money and being broken.
  • Talk about lost productivity and implications for future generations.
  • Speaking of how far behind America is compared to our all-knowing, all-seeing, all-doing-it-better-than-we-are friends in "Europe."
  • If ever there was an example of how well (ill) a "government option" works it is the state controlled, union dominated, bureaucratic, "never enough money" black hole of a government service.

That's US public education.

Like the Wall St. executives, would this ruling party summon the heads of the major Teachers Unions before the Congress and demand to know where the billions of US taxpayers dollars had gone for all these years for the lemons their members have produced?

Like the Auto Maker CEOs, would today's Leftist Government make the Unions accept non-union educators (if there are such people), theoreticians and business executives to "run" the schools because they obviously can't?

Would this Administration disparage the prevailing education establishment, union leaders, and kooky social relativist school boards as "... the people who got us here" from their "... failed policies of the past 40 years ..." and banish them from having any role in the reforms?

Funny how it's also another example how the private sector manages to excel without the endless pit of government money and primarily by the skin that parents, students, and their schools all have in the game.

Friday, July 03, 2009

"Cue the Hugger"

Do these people have no shame? Talk about "exploitation!"

If GWB would have had even one photo opp forum like this "... an emotional forum before a supportive audience..." with wounded Iraq War vets who supported him, people would be screaming bloody murder. Remember what happened with the megaphone shot at Ground Zero!
Where are the media in calling attention to this?

Hopes were temporarily raised this week when First Mouthpiece Robert Gibbs had a run-in with the Wicked Witch of the West Wing at a daily presser.

(NOTE: By the way, the largest public relations professional society in North America awarded Gibbs "PR Professional of the Year." ) He was presented the award for:

  1. "... Gibbs won it for the campaign's message and ability to stay on it, its use of new media, and the "visible emphasis on communications transparency, openness and expediency, and generated a feeling of real-time connectedness with the electorate due to the active dialog with voters...."
  2. “When the collective Honors and Awards Committee met to determine who really made the most impact on this industry from innovation, dedication and strategic public relations, it was clear and unanimous — Robert Gibbs.

Besides his smarmy, stuck-up attitude and lame attempts at humor to extricate himself, the guy never answered the question. And when Helen Thomas -- who everyone knows had zero love for the Bushies -- is calling you out about lack of transparency and controlling practices, you know it's bad.

We live in hope that the American public -- and eventually the American media -- will eventually wake up form this Obama drug-induced coma and realize that this "stagecraft" way 0f governing is telepromtering the country into a big pile of BS that no amount of spin cycle will be able to cleanse.

Wednesday, July 01, 2009

Let the weapon inspectors do their work

Seems to me that Congress, the President, Algore, and a long list of special interest groups are now doing exactly what Pres. Bush was criticized for in going to war in Iraq.

"There's no time to waste! We have to move
"We have evidence that this is happening or could
"The best intelligence we have points to
"Danger Will Robinson!"

Critics bemoaned and impugned Bush's motives (and questioned his authority), contradicted his evidence, disparaged his supporters, urged more time further examination, requested direct debate, presented conflicting evidence, proposed alternatives (and rallied like-minded supporters to publicly protest and repeatedly ridiculed the opposition).

Has any of that happened with Global Warming? No--anyone who felt or thought differently was marginalized as a "kook."

Bush's team and Congress (at that time) swayed enough people to go forward; OK, elections have consequences. But his critics were covered in the media and given a say in many forums crying foul (constantly) all the way until today.

Now a new president, a new Congress, and new campaign contributors are rushing the country into a similar situation screaming crisis!, crisis!, crisis!, urging immediate action all while a general assumption that:
  1. the science is unmistakable (it's not)
  2. the "experts" are unimpeachable (they're far from it)
  3. the debate has already happened & they won (definitely hasn't)
  4. and that the public supports it (polls show when fully informed of all pros/cons at stake we really don't).

Just this week, a Senator proposed investigating whether, allegedly, the Administration squelched an internal doubter and silenced his dissent. Was the media all over this story as they were when Pres. Bush was supposed to have done the same? Will that person break his silence on “60 Minutes” or be pictured in sunglasses and a headscarf on the cover of “Vanity Fair”?

Such a far-reaching, game-changing redirection of national programs, policies, government regulations and public sector requirements deserves greater consideration and open, honest debate. The earth has somehow made it through "the last 8 years" (the divining line of all things nowadays), it'll make it through a few more days or weeks so our representatives AT LEAST HAVE TIME TO READ THE LEGISLATION.

The president and his party could do well to heed Colin Powell's warning to Bush about Iraq:

"You break it, you own it."

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Top 10 Comebacks for Brig. Gen. Michael Walsh to Barbara Boxer:

Visitors might want to share their opinions and write to the lovely and talented Senator from California: (reminder: be nice)

Senator Barbara Boxer
112 Hart Senate Office Building
Washington, D.C. 20510
(202) 224-3553
(202) 224-0454 fax

Have you ever wished that you could have thought of a good comeback when dealing with an idiot.

Usually the perfect "zinger" comes to us later on, like in the shower or driving (like George Costanza and the "Jerk Store" retort.) Here's my opinion on what the General should have said, but being an honorable man, he had the discipline to bite his tongue. (Now THAT'S "Army Strong.")

Here are my Top 10 comebacks to Sen. Boxer:

10. "I was going to say 'Madam' but then realized that you probably have never run an actual business."

9. "Chairman Boxer. My military training has instilled in me a code of conduct and decorum that requires that others be treated with respect. The terms “Sir” and “Ma’am” have historically been used as terms of respect and deference to those in senior authority. It was with this intention that I addressed you in that manner: to accord the courtesy and respect you have indeed earned by ascending to this lofty office. I only wish that you had the good manners to reciprocate this common courtesy to a Brigadier General in the United States Army."

8. (In a raspy voice like Marcie to Peppermint Patti, and with apologies to Charles M. Shultz) “I apologize if you find the term disagreeable, sir.”

7. "Senator—American is made up of many ethnicities, cultural backgrounds, political views, sex, color, creeds, occupations, life experiences, etc. The American people are routinely reminded to be accepting, understanding, and tolerant of the perspectives and traditions of others. The military is my culture; being a walking hemorrhoid from California is yours. I will try to remember to respect your request, but, should I forget or accidentally slip, I ask that you try to respect mine."

6. "I called Senator Baucus “Sir” a minute ago, would you like me to use that term with you, too?"

5. (In his best Bobby De Niro imitation) “Are you talkin’ to ME?”

4. (apologies to David Allen Coe) “I don’t have to call you Darlin, Dar-lin. I don’t have to call you by your name…”

3. "Next, the committee will hear testimony from Heidi Fleiss. She's also demanding to be called 'Senator' because like the Chairwoman, she's worked hard to get where she is too."

2. (Apologies to Jimmy Buffet) “I really do appreciate the fact you're sittin' here. Your voice sounds so wonderful, but yer face don't look too clear. They say you are a snuff queen; Honey I don’t think that’s true. (I'd stop here, because the General is a family man with undoubtedly better taste.)?"

1. "Sure. Would you prefer 'Senator Asshole' or just plain 'Senator?'”

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Bam to "Axis of Evil": See no evil, speak no evil

Couple things about O and Iran.

First, in the days before and during the Iranian election day, Bam & Company were glowing and crowing about how Bamster's influence. Cited for the overwhelming turnout and excitement was Bam's famous "extended hand to an unclenched fist" policy and of course the "great Cairo University speech." Yep, it was Obama the world had to thank for the "vigorous debate" demonstrated at the polls (pretty much taking credit for the high turnout and challenges to Ahmadinejad). Unprovable statement but unchallenged by mainstream media.

[Editor's NOTE: As opposed to say, the presence of a now democratic Iraq next door?]

Here's proof: If his speechifying was so influential, imagine what another one of his speeches could do for the people of Iran and the world now? Too bad, the US must stay out of things & remain silent. (Uh, maybe the time for that was before people started getting shot in the streets.) Only until Bam sees how things will shake out so he can claim credit for it (again unprovable but unchallenged by mainstream media).

Next, even after his lofty, wise and statesmen-like "see no evil, speak no evil" policy, Barry is being accused of tampering and interfering by the Supreme Leader regardless. Under Bush's enhanced interrogation policy (used on two really bad apples and killed no one), Obama claims we shamed one of our country's founding principles. Which of these cherished principles is honored by official silence while peaceful protesters are being shot in the streets by their own government's hand?

To be sure, the leading opposition candidate isn't a choir boy, nor would he necessarily be a friend to America or the West. But look at the movement, not the leader -- The answer is on the computer screens: the people protesting aren't wearing robes, headscarves and aren't sporting full beards and holding up pictures of Ayatollah Khomeini -- they are young, old, men and WOMEN, dressed in western style clothes, fairly well educated and modernized (based on their use of English seen in signs, mastery of video and Internet technology and calls for less government belligerence). How could THAT candidate be worse than what's in place now? If he wins, do you really think he's going to be pleased to have gotten not even a word of encouragement from us? If he looses, do you think Ahmadinejad is going to "owe" Bam one?

Lastly, here's the dirty "open" secret: Obama CAN'T say anything encouraging because that would then lead to images of protesters carrying signs reading "Obama, help us!" and "America, where ARE you?" which would then lead to calls for us to "DO something." And the US can't do anything with muscle or teeth because that is what GWB did next door in Iraq, and Barry, his party, Hollywood, the European Left, and most importantly all his financial contributor groups have spent the last 8 years bitching about.

"To sit across the table [from] a man whose regime has just killed
people, for example, it's going to be a public relations nightmare for the Obama administration."
-- Abbas Milani, who directs the
Iranian studies program at Stanford University

[Editor's Note: Curious--when was the last time we saw photos in print or video on the news channels of the Iraqis pulling down that big stature of Saddam and beating it with their shoes?]

Guess we can't have that, now can we?

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

W says, "See I told you so"

If GWB hasn't actually said "I told you so," he has every right to.

One wonders how things might be different in the streets of Tehran today had George Bush's critics within and without the government not been as obstructive and destructive back in 2003-2004. What if the global support from our "allies" could have embraced his/Cheney'/Rumsfeld's vision of Iraq being an "island of democracy” in that part of the world? A beacon of hope that other oppressed Muslim peoples could look to?

What if American resolve hadn’t wavered and allowed the collective Left to give moral support to the Iraqi Resistance (and Syria, Iran, etc.)? What if those who were killing our troops with IEDs and suicide attacks didn’t have as many occasions to rejoice upon seeing the US media reporting on all the deserved and undeserved Administration missteps? What if there had been no Abu grab pictures to give the Great Satan his black eye? What if the US ousting of Saddam hadn't been slowed and hobbled by the one-sided international coverage of staged & promoted street protests by the usual anti-capitalists, former Communists, anarchists, Earth Firsters, Hollywood/TV/pop music/pop culture elites, the Cindy Sheehan's and The "Peace" Movement rent-a-mobs?

What if GWB had the fawning cooperation of the US news media and entertainment elite to support his policies in that part of the world as Barak Obama now enjoys?

Can we imagine how much closer Iran would be to real reform today, and how much stronger our position would be to encourage those brave people now dying in the streets? (And of those who are dying in the streets—whom do you think they’d prefer to have occupying the White House today?)

GWB may not have been the most eloquent speaker to live at 1600 Penna. Ave., but I wonder if he's watching the news tonight down in Dallas and lamenting that it was all these others "who just didn't get it."

Well THIS isn't in the script

Photo: LA Times

"The decision comes as many in the gay community have voiced disappointment with the president, especially after the administration filed a legal brief defending the Defense of Marriage Act."
While the news story is from today, the photo dates back four weeks. Note: posters were NOT made by Right-wing wackos, see the rainbow flag above the "Fail" one. (My personal favorite.)
Of course it appears new to many of you because most of the country didn't see this photo or video images because the State Media Industrial Complex won't carry images like this. But like we're seeing in Iran, even the most locked-down media black-out has some leaks and here's one.
Either that or somewhere out in LaLa Land someone apparently didn't get the memo. (Note: this photo accompanied a story back in late MAY when The Teleprompter was raising money in Hollywood.)
Like we've been saying for years about other "special interest groups" -- it's not like your going to suddenly take your money and go vote Republican.
So what if it takes a little time--Bam's operating on HIS time, not yours. So my advice is to chill out, wait a little longer ("Milk" is coming out on DVD soon, so focus on that) and when he gets Healthcare and Cap-and-Trade done, then he'll get to you. Eventually. Maybe.
Tell us which is worse: a president who disagrees with you but tells the truth and lets you know where he stands; or, a guy who takes your vote, takes your money, uses your "people"-power, says what you want to hear, but doesn't do it?
If you really want to be a pain, ask him if a same-sex ceremony can be performed in the White House or Rose Garden. You know, just to see what he says.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

And the transparency continues......

A funny thing happened on POTUS' the way to "openness and transparency."

If you notice, one phrase is becoming more and more used (finally) the further we get into this administration: "Despite President Barack Obama's pledge to ____ (fill in the blank)...."

"Obama blocks list of visitors to White House
Taking Bush's position,
administration denies request for logs"

(Naturally, they had to throw in another Bush jab, first. Can't just criticize the Teleprompter on his own merits, no. Maybe he "picked something up" from W on the toilet seat in the OOffice?)

He realized what all the other guys had and the reason they insist on keeping it. Sure is easy to criticize and make points on the campaign trail; completely different thing once you have it. "Do as I say, not as I do."

Monday, June 08, 2009 video: The presidential teleprompter

The presidential teleprompter . Folks: I’m a follow of this guy's Twitter site. Once again, your host, .... on the cutting edge!

June 2: TODAY correspondent Jamie Gangel takes a closer look at a member of the White House that has been getting a lot of attention — the president’s teleprompter.

Friday, June 05, 2009

Robbing Peter to Pay Paul

I thought the government was supposed to have a separation of church and state?

Our local paper has a poll today, asking:
"Should consumers who trade in their older vehicles get government vouchers to buy newer cars?"

Obama voters would generally say:
"Yeah! Great idea. Would really help people make the switch to greener technologies and help GM & Chrysler get back on their feet."
--- Or worse ---
"Heck. You'd be dumb not to take advantage of free money."

Except of course what Obama voters don't consider is that the money for the voucher has to come from somewhere -- more like from "someone."

This, gentle readers, should illustrate to the difference between a "credit" and a "tax reduction" or "tax return." Tax returns and/or reductions are monies that are already the taxpayers -- money he/she has already earned that you allow them to keep or get back. This as opposed to monies coming from the raised taxes paid by other taxpayers who didn't (or couldn't) do this activity.

The same is true for all these "stimulus saved or created jobs." The only good news that could come from stimulus would be a job created in the private sector. While I'm happy people still have gigs and I wouldn't wish to be unemployed, I'd be much happier and the economy would be MUCH better off if the jobs were OUTside of government.

Wealth (and tax monies) can only be truly created by the marketplace from the private sector. Otherwise, you are just spreading tax money from one hand to the other.

With all the who-ha about "being green" and "sustainability," the above outlined strategy is itself an "unsustainable" daisy chain with the green of taxpayers.

For all their talk about separating Church and State, The Left routinely resorts to Robbing Peter to pay Paul. This is especially the case when they seek to "render unto Caesar what is Caesar's."

(And "seize" is the operative word ;-)

Thursday, June 04, 2009

Rush Punks SRM (again)

NOW with Bill Moyers. Politics & Economy. Talk Radio. Kathleen Hall Jamieson on History and Impact PBS: "The person who listened to political talk radio as a conservative is more likely to be a consumer of mainstream media than a person who isn't a high consumer of political conservative talk radio." (2-13-2004)

Can't believe MSM or as RL would say, "State Run Media," fell for this.

Rush is only saying this so that MSM/SRM is:
1) "forced" to ask her about her position in order to distance herself from appearing to appeal to him (whom the Left hates), and thus,
2) Put in position to illustrate her views do not represent the majority of Latinas, most of whom claim a Catholic background and many espouse "Pro-Life" positions vs. "Pro-Choice"; thus, proving the his point.

RLPunked” them here like he did to Hillary during the 2008 Democrat primaries. A Rush endorsement does madam judge more harm within her Dem/Lefty base than his worst criticism could ever do. They're probably huddled right now thinking, “How can we disavow this "endorsement" without showing our true hand?”

Got into a convo with a Lefty about this. “April” was typical in calling Rush listeners every disparaging name in the book, so I had to correct her. Certainly, Political Talk format has its share of crude, rude and obnoxious audience, but really not any more than other formats, say ... Urban Contemporary.

(Editor’s note: Have you given that a listen? There's a LOT of hate on that air. An unabashed favoritism toward Bam that makes Fox or Talk Radio pale – pun, sorry -- in comparison. Where’s the Fairness Doctrine when you need it?)

To prove my point, I challenged her (and you, gentle readers) to check out the work of the Univ. of Pennsylvania’s Annenberg School of Communication, and professor Kathleen Hall Jamieson. She researched this theory since the mid-90s (after the Republican Revolution Midterm sea-change) ostensibly to prove “April’s” assumptions. They were (and continue to be) surprised to find out Rush's audience was actually better educated, more exposed to different media news sources, more politically active and likely to be voters, than comparable listeners of even NPR. (Google it; it’s true. Bill Moyer's NOW 2-13-04)

Garden Variety Liberals (aka “Rush haters”) are actually more guilty of what they accuse Rush Listeners of being – robotic sheep that hear nothing but their master’s voice and can’t think on their own. While the rank-and-file libs you meet at parties or on the street readily discount Limbaugh (and talk radio generally) and demean the audience “across the fruited plain,” THEY do so at their own peril. They are also whistling past the graveyard when they pooh-pooh Rush as being “… just an entertainer, doing it for ratings.” Rush knows otherwise and (and so do most of his listeners).

This “he’s just saying that for the money” mantra from the Left actually provides Rush, in effect, with a cloak of immunity. But that’s Rush’s final insult to injury because he doesn’t.

The Lib Leaders, on the other hand, know better. That's why Air America was tried (… and tried, and tried, and tried—and failed). And that’s why "Fairness Doctrine" is being re-floated.

Monday, June 01, 2009

Survey says.... only white guys can be racist

Apparently the overnight poll focus group data has come in and the RNC has determined the whole "racist" thing isn't playing well to the female 25-54 demo (as Keith Olbermann used to say when he was a sportscaster). They are ceding the high ground (and logic) for a position that's less "unsightly."

Successfully grafting their talking points into the "stream" of the "mainstream" media, the Donkey Party has unwittingly (they do this a lot) undone one bow of something nicely wrapped up to use it as a tourniquet for another wound. Apparently they've raised (or is it lowered) the standard by which one can be called "a racist."

Used to be, that anytime Person A said his (her) own race was in any way, shape or form "better" than Persons B-Z race, that constituted being a racist. Now, that's just a "poor word choice."

Getting carried away with their defense (they do this a good amount, too), the Dem talking points arguing against the "R" word applying to the good madam judge is that the standard for being called a "racist" is membership in the KKK?

"... she's been called the equivalent of the head of the Ku Klux
Patrick Leahy, D-VT.
(If that's the case, then I can only think of one certain elder Democrat
senator who would qualify, but not any Republicans.)

Still, even if mere KKK membership (not leadership like the senior senator from WVA) is the minimum standards for being a racist, then Rev. Jesse Jackson, Al Sharpton, and a lot of other folks have some apologizing to scores of white people they've labeled as racists over the years for reasons and causes not nearly as important as this.

Heck, we shouldn't even mention Rush's unsightly ESPN exit in 2003 and his infamous assessment (opinion) of the NFL's Donovan McNabb. And all Rush had was a one-night a week football analyst stint, not a lifetime appointment to the US Supreme Court. (Many people thought Rush was Right, too.)
The National Association of Black Journalists also called for ESPN to "separate
itself" from Limbaugh.
""ESPN's credibility as a journalism entity is at stake," NABJ president Herbert Lowe said in a news release. "It needs to send a clear signal that the subjects of race and equal opportunity are taken seriously at its news outlets."

Recall how George Allen was roundly denounced on CNN and everywhere else by talking heads because he uttered just ONE word (a made-up, nonsensical name) at a campaign stop? He LOST his senate seat largely because of that backlash. For certain, if HE had it to do over, he would re-think his "poor choice of words." But does anyone think for a minute that Allen's little slip of the tongue wouldn't be dragged back out if he ever decided to make a political comeback?

Words have meaning, and like elections, they have consequences consequences. They do for people on the Right; but it appears as if people on the Left are immune.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

I was born a poor black child....

"I was born a poor black child....."
--Navin Johnson (Steve Martin's character in "The

Disingenuousness is not a very good way to start off a presidency or an appointment to the highest court in the land.

POTUS and Judge Sotomayor discussion of "empathy" as a desirable quality in a Supreme Court appointment is a complete straw dog. And they should stop trying to spin it that way.
From a president who on his first day chided his predecessors and dreaded “Washington Insiders” for past shenanigans and promised to “… proclaim an end to the petty grievances and false promises, the recriminations and worn-out dogmas that for far too long have strangled our politics...,” we get an act of raw, boldface political gamesmanship. “Oppose THIS, all you Republicans.” (All that’s missing is “make my day.”)

This is a quota check mark nomination, pure and simple, so let’s at least acknowledge that much. Some would say, “Hey, that’s the way it is—elections have consequences.” To them I say, see above.

First, she points out that Holmes and Cardozo voted on cases upholding sex and race discrimination and that the Court until the 70s ever found for a woman in a gender discrimination case. Well, none of the nine guys on the Court in the 1970s had uteruses and THEY still found a woman’s right to an abortion somewhere in the Constitution. None were “Hispanic” in the 1960s, and yet somehow Ernesto Miranda was overturned by those same guys (8 white & 1 black). How does she explain that?

Next, as Cal Thomas says in his column today, if pulling oneself up from bootstraps biographies could guarantee smooth sailing through the process, Clarence Thomas should have been granted an express ticket to the bench instead of the trip to hell & back that was his confirmation hearing.

Then, she posits that her unique experiences and upbringing would prove valuable in seeking some yet unachieved wisdom from the Supreme Court, something white guys or men in general, or non-Latina women could not possibly understand nor hope to attain. Who’s to say her Latina perspective would be representative of:
a) all/most US women
b) all/most US Latinos
c) all/most fatherless diabetics?
d) etc.
Were Sandy O’Connor and Ruth Ginsburg in lock-step on all issues; you know, being they were both women? Do you think Clarence Thomas and Thurgood Marshall would see eye-to-eye on all things because they were both black?

The fact that there's a "liberal opening" on the court now is proof that not even WHITE GUYS can agree on everything sufficient enough to keep the rest of all these second-class citizens under their thumb of domination and exploitation. (You'd think if ever there would be motive, that would be enough.)

No, Sonya, you’d only represent left-leaning, feminist, Latinas. And actually just one—yourself. The one thing you COULD represent with 100% certainty is that you are an American (you are, aren't you?) And don’t ask me how you can sit in judgment if you get some Gitmo detainees in front of you because none of them are women, Puerto Rican, or Liberal; OK they might be Liberal, but they probably all hate GWB, so you'll no doubt have that perspective in common.

Finally, I thought the goal has always been to find appointments who could be counted upon to check their experience, prejudices, and preconceptions at the door and seek only to see the case through the lens of the LAW and not through the color of their skin or thickness of their dogma.

If one has to have a “representative” on the Court in order to somehow come nearer to “justice” then what about a second generation descendant of coal-mining, deer-hunting, Eastern European Slavs?

Who represents me?

Friday, May 22, 2009

The Prez Gets Schooled -- Notre Dame

The AP sent a few reporters to South Bend, Ind., last weekend for POTUS' speech. As a media insider, today I'll show you how you can tell a lot about a writer's perspective if you just pay attention to little things.

For example, the AP reporter’s (or editors) word choice describing the motivation of those holding signs: " express their anger ...." Anger? What’s so vociferous about “Shame on ND” or “Stop Abortion Now”? Must they be "angry" with all the connotations that come with that emotion ( i.e. wild-eyed, raving redneck, bible-thumping Pro-Life nut jobs)? Isn't it possible they could be reasoned, respectful, principled yet passionate people standing in opposition to his policies and opinions?

Perhaps they were “remorseful” over their country’s 30-year history of death or “saddened” by their president’s position or “heartbroken” over the fate of millions of unborn babies? Would pro same-sex marriage advocates protesting government policy be described off-handed as, “angry.” I think not. No, “opposed” would have sufficed here without the editorializing, especially in an article calling for “tolerance” and Obama’s plea to stop “reducing those with differing views to caricature.”

Next, Norma McCorvey -- “Jane Roe” of Roe v. Wade fame -- is mentioned as one of the 27 arrested “trespassers.” While pleased this fact made it into the article (and that she now opposes legalized abortion), I can only wonder what the lead and headline of a story would have been if Rosa Parks would have reversed her position on Jim Crow bus seating, or Karl Rove would admit he opposed former Pres. Bush's Iraq policy. “Roe” is THE iconic figure in this entire issue, and she’s given three sentences seven paragraphs into the text, without a quote attributed to her or about her made by anyone else.

Perhaps we should consider a favorite saying adopted by many who subscribe to the "Progressive" perspective for lots of other societal or governmental incursions into the lives of individuals:

"There can be no keener revelation of a society's soul than the way in which it treats its children." (Nelson Mandela)

President Obama said in his inaugural address his Administration was going to "restore science to its rightful place" in public debate; he should do that with this issue. He should mandate that we "wield technology's wonders" by requiring abortion seekers receive a sonogram image of the "non-viable tissue mass" that she carries. After all, he said in Notre Dame that he hoped to reduce the numbers of abortions.

Such a requirement just might do that.

Maybe if we called it a "Swirly" instead?

A good friend passed along Charley Krauthammer's Op-Ed today in the Wash Post. (Thanks)

A very good read.

Three things about Bam's speech on terrorist policy differences betwixt & between Admins.:

1) Up next, he'll make another meaningful change in the name from water boarding to "giving them a Swirly." Administered by some Chicago public school 9th graders in the Men's Room of P.S. #107 on the South Side, it will be just as threatening but then he can get away with this too.

2) Does the long list of flip-flops on Bush's "evil" policy and Bam's "Bush-lite" versions mean he has to give back all the accolades and positive poll numbers these empty promises generated from the weak minded fools + media sheep who supported him? And the Dems thought John F. Kerry flopped a lot. (Good thing the media's not paying attention and keeping score like they did in 2004).

3) On Bam's last "European Apology Tour," he apologized to just about everybody for just about everything GWB supposedly had done to "offend" world sensitivities. POTUS: Are you planning a trip down to Texas to apologize to W for trashing him before walking a mile in his shoes?

Monday, May 18, 2009

So, God Walks into a Bar ....

Rush Limbaugh is known to tell an old joke about God's interaction with the press on the End of the World.

One day, God decides he's had enough with his earthly experiment and decides to destroy the universe and start over. In one final gesture of magnanimity, God calls a press conference to announce his intentions and give believers and non a chance to put their affairs in order. He invites editorial teams from three major news outlets -- The New York Times, USA Today and The Wall St. Journal and gives them exclusives on the biggest story in history. Short & sweet, God tells them he's going to destroy the world in 24-hours and charges them to spread the word about the Apocalypse.

Dutifully, the papers compose their final editions. And on the "End of Days" the papers hit the newsstands, their headlines blaring:

  • USA Today: "GOD: WE'RE GONE!"
  • WSJ: "Mr. God Says World to End Tomorrow" (Subhead: "Markets to Close Early")
  • NYT: "God Says, World to End; Women, Children, Minorities Hardest Hit"

Last Friday, we see this item from the Old Grey Lady, (May 15, 2009) showing that sometimes life imitates art.

Minorities Affected Most as New York Foreclosures Rise

Now, is it just me, but doesn't this go without reason? Were not these the consumers Fannie and Freddie were so adamant to get loans to over the past 5-10-20 years? The article points this out plainly:

And the hardest blows rain down on the backbone of minority neighborhoods:
the black middle class. In
New York City, for example, black households making more than $68,000 a year are almost five times as likely to hold high-interest subprime mortgages as are
whites of similar — or even lower — incomes.

This holds a special poignancy. Just four or five years ago, black
home ownership was rising sharply, after decades in which discriminatory lending
and zoning practices discouraged many blacks from buying. Now, as damage ripples
outward, black families in foreclosure lose savings and credit, neighbors see
the value of their homes decline, and renters are evicted.

So, after years of suffering bad press for NOT giving these (high-risk) consumers loans, and the occasional drive-through blockade or lobby storming/sit-ins by the rent-a-mob "community organizers" of the world, when the banks eventually DO make the loans (risky & all) now they are mean & evil?

This is not coming from a bank flack, either. ( I do not work for a bank; never have. None of my relatives work for banks; matter of fact, I'm not sure that I know anybody who DOES currently work for a bank.) Personally, I do bank at commercial banking institutions and have credit cards, a few of which took hits from the "crises."

All the agreements made were done by me, of my own doing and for which I am responsible. Yes, I received mail from banks and cards; it's also true that I went out into the world and sought information from mortgage lenders. But NOBODY from a bank burst through my front door, sat/shouted/sang/chanted (with media in tow) forcing me to sign anything. The signed commitments or contracts those are the deals I made --it's what I have to live with.

For me now to go back to them and ask them to change the rules, that's asking a big favor don't you think? (Now, the opposite is true--I don't think the banks should be able to change the terms of the deal on me either, but that's different post.)

With all this talk about "responsibility" lately, you'd think somebody would point out that its the consumer who is ultimately responsible for the bed he/she must lay in. If there's any non-personal responsibility to be taken here for the poor, dumb, helpless, high school graduates we've populated this country with it might be with government schools. Those institutions have apparently churned out millions of simpletons who don't know you that you have to eventually pay back the money you charge on a credit card, that can't calculate simple interest or manage to balance a checkbook. BUT they MIGHT know who Elizabeth Cady Stanton is, what the "hockey stick graph" shows or what the Mayan calendar and numbering system is based on.

Which one of those things is going to bring the country and the world into a global economic crisis if not known by everyday "Joe Six-packs"?

Thursday, May 07, 2009

A funny thing happened on the way to "Responsibility"

So, I'm reading the Washington Post today, about their coverage of Bam's great unveiling yesterday of the FY 2010 Budget. Finally, the Devil in the Details.

Bottom line, POTUS plans to spend $3.4 Trillion -- with a "T" -- next year. Oh, and the deficit will be $1.2 Trillion.

You'd think when a guy stands up, looks into a teleprompter and announces he plans to spend several "Trillion" dollars that he'd would get noticed. Well, he did, but not for using the "T" word. The MainStream Media is all flush with talk of $17 Billion -- with a "B" in alleged "cuts."

OK. Since nobody in the Washington Press Corps has the stones to ask the obvious question, I will. (I take that back, at least Jake Tasker at ABC Political Punch Blog mustered the courage; I don't know if asked the Teleprompter verbally.)
$17 Billion in budget "cuts"? That's what you're leading with?
And most coming from the Defense budget? Was anybody else asked to

$17 billion in the ENTIRE budget? (!!) Wells-Fargo needs to scrape up $15 Billion to just to shore-up after the Administration's stress test. You mean you can only find $2 Billion than a stressed out bank from a budget of more than 3 Trillion?

What's more incredulous is that three (3) Washington Post writers dutifully spent 40 (that’s 4-0, FORTY) paragraphs largely devoted to touting those meager $17 B in cuts to get to the essential point of the whole charade:

"The proposed cuts, if adopted by Congress, would not
actually reduce government spending. Obama's budget would increase overall
spending; any savings from the program terminations and reductions would be
shifted to the president's priorities."

ABC News (You have to look for it a while) but when you do: "Obama to cut budget"
NBC/MSNBC News: "Obama wants to cut $17 billion from budget"
CBS News: After leading with the Marine One fleet being cancelled, by, yes, the president's "budget cuts" they DID run this item on a CBS news blog: "Obama tries to control budget story line." Duh.

Over at AP, while still running with the $17B as the main focus, if you read closely one can see some cracks in the veneer. They dared mention that GWB tried to axe many of the same programs for years, but a Democrat controlled Congress put them back in anyway. And they even mentioned that things got hot for our buddy Robert Gibbs having to explain why the $17 B was much more important that that other "Trillion" number that had been mentioned.
Good for them.
Despite redoubling its efforts to portray itself as tough on waste and spending, the administration and Congress have taken the nation on a steady course of higher federal spending. In rapid succession has come passage of a $787 billion economic recovery bill, a $410 billion omnibus appropriations bill and Congress' $3.4 trillion budget for next year, which calls for increases of almost 10 percent over current funding for non-defense agency budgets.

I'm all for people respecting the office of the President; I didn't care for how extremely GWB was "dissed" by many newsies and 99% of Hollywood. And I'm not saying the current President should be disrespected or treated in any way but professionally.

But how the "professionals" in the Washington Press Corps can allow this guy to stand up there and boldface use terms like “A New Era of Responsibility” when he is actively planning on spending this much is beyond me.

Wednesday, May 06, 2009

Maybe if there was ring-kissing involved....

I guess the Prez is reserving his quota for being in-the-presence-of-Christians for another "large Catholic" event later this month -- in South Bend, Ind.

Maybe if there was ring-kissing involved he would put in more effort. There will be robes and funny hats, though.

The part I LOVE is seeing what the POTUS' mouthpiece Robert Gibbs said:
"That's the way he'll publicly observe the day--privately."

I kid you not.

Monday, April 27, 2009

WP: Obama Supporters Going From 'Fired Up' to Tired Out

Read good article in the Washington Post this weekend, A Hundred Anxious Days

About a local councilwoman and her exhaustion in trying to help people going through tough times in a down-and-out town in South Carolina. Daily, her voicemail is loaded with calls seeing her assistance with everything from avoiding foreclosure to paying the light bill. But the saddest thing about this story is the number of calls of people seeing help, but not for the obvious reason.

Surely, no one should take pleasure from hearing their pleas for help. No, but what IS sad about the article is that -- in this day and age, when an African American man can become president of the US -- there's not more people like him. I don't agree with the Prez on a lot, but I do acknowledge him for what he did. He came up from nowhere, product of a broken home (mom was a fruit-loop flower child and original Dad was an absentee), uprooted & moved all around the world, raised by grandparents, teased & ridiculed & called names because of bi-racial heritage and his funny sounding name, etc. Say what you will, he fought though that and got the best education he could and took advantage of "help-ups" not "hand-outs."

The real problem behind this story is that those callers to Mrs. Childs' phone DON'T HAVE A CLUE about what to do to help themselves; so they call her. After 45+ years of institutionalized "help" from the Government, the people behind those 17 blinking messages really DON'T know how to get THEMSELVES out of troubles. Worse yet, they ignored the process of how they got into troubled positions in the first place, and even if she can help them, they wont' take action so as not to call back.

For three or four generations they've been told, "you can't do it alone" and "your disadvantaged" or "you need help from some program to make it" or "somebody else is holding you back so just vote for us and we'll make them stop." But that lie hasn't come from the people or the party it's normally attributed. Who has been telling these people all this time that THEY can't do it? Who's been telling them: you must have these programs because you just can't get it done with your own two feet or two hands or the wits in your head?

Talk about using outdated thinking and worn-out policies to overcome the problems of the modern world!! The President and his Party need to bag the tired old ploy of pitting the have-not's against the haves.

It isn't that these folks are being held down by the same sinister oppressors (as may have been the case in the past). The new oppressor does indeed come from Washington, but not with scowl or an elephant on his lapel, but with a smile and a program and claims they're "here to help."

The sad thing with the blinking lights on Mrs. Childs' message machine isn't that there are people calling asking for help; the core problem is that for far too long in far too many ways and for far too many people there has always BEEN something or some program there to help them out. And people got comfortable with that; some would argue not only comfortable but "entitled" to them.

Being "uncomfortable" or "underprivileged" or plain old "poor" should be the greatest motivator to individuals to: a) work to get out of that condition, and b) change their ways so as not to revert back. The problem with America in the last half of the 20th Century is that to overcome our guilt (collectively as one people) and make up for the unfairness of past sins, we committed a far greater sin by making those conditions palatable. And these people waited & waited in four year increments for the Messiah to come. Well, now he's here.

Meanwhile, Mrs. Childs' phone will keep on ringing; and sooner or later, her bank account is going to be empty. Much like our US Treasury and the 50% of the people who pay income taxes for themselves and the other 50% who don't. Presently, everyone is focused on what is happening to "the poor." They ought to be focused on who's paying the bills, because without them, nobody can be served or saved.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

"Not only did we not intend to offend Christians, why, we even HAVE some Christians in our Administration, including the VP himself!"

(Note: Headline a homage to Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano's response to the bone-headed Right-Wing Extremists" memo.)

Gentle readers:

Do you recall back when John Ashcroft was US Attorney General, and spoke in the DOJ lobby that had a "topless" stature of Lady Justice?

News photographers and videographers took great delight in framing Mr. Ashcroft (a devout Christian) with the statue's knockers in the shot ("they're sculpted, and they're spectacular!").

Knowing it was going to be a repeated distraction, he directed that draping be placed over the statue’s “naughty bits” to avoid further mockery. Unfortunately, he was lampooned all the more by late-night hosts, comics and of course, Hollywood.

But that was OK because it was the Republicans and as we know they were fair game to ridicule. Today, why we’re just trying to get “a nice, plain backdrop.” Except of course for those killer stained glass windows -- man, did THEY look good.

The Prez selected the place for the speech for a reason (Georgetown, founded as a Catholic institution) to benefit from the venue. Most probably to help the idiot chancellor at Notre Dame with his upcoming commencement address. Darn, for a country that's not a Christian (or Judea-Christian) country, it's inconvenient to keep running into all these places with connections to those pesky faiths.

If the setting (potentially) embarrasses the Prez so much -- or he doesn’t want to offend the Muslim world and lose some of the points he scored with the Princely hand-kiss last week, then take the speech out of the venue completely, and don’t attempt to benefit from the place at all.

You can’t have it both ways. Can someone in the media call PLEASE grow a pair (not of those, but below, you know in the "tea bag") and them on this?

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Thought for the Day: UN stands for "UNtouchable"

Report: U.N. spent U.S. funds on shoddy projects
--USAToday, April 14, 2009

"The U.N. delivered shoddy work, diverted money to other countries and then stonewalled U.S. efforts to figure out what happened, according to a report by USAID's inspector general.... Federal prosecutors in New York City were forced to drop criminal and civil cases because the U.N. officials have immunity, according to the report."(Emphasis added by C&A)

Question: Where are US citizens going to turn when we're even more personally and materially harmed by onerous "global warming" restrictions on freedoms and suffer "carbon taxes" levied on only on Americans?

Monday, April 13, 2009

This is your luck day, Mr. 4th Pirate

This guy is the luckiest man on the Indian Ocean. (OK, maybe not this particular guy, but someone just like him.)
(thanks Drudge)

Remember during the first Gulf War (the one we didn't screw up), and the guy affectionately nick-named, "the Luckiest Man in Iraq?" That fellow became infamous during a televised military briefing featuring cockpit videotape from the US bomber jet using its laser guided bomb to take out a bridge in just seconds AFTER an Iraqi military vehicle drove over it. The explosion imagined seen in his rear view mirror probably didn't come near the wreckage found later in his Fruit-of-the-Looms when he realized what happened. (As Bill Cosby once said: "First you say it; then you do it.")

Well, something like that has just befallen the as-of-now unidentified "4th Somali Pirate." This guy is the last pirate standing from the successfully (thank Goodness) completed Navy SEAL sniper recruiting campaign on Easter Sunday. Conflicting reports had him either on board a Navy ship negotiating for his comrades, OR injured, voluntarily surrendered and in custody.

Whichever is correct, the guy didn't meet the fate of his three now deceased buddies who apparently never pirated Cinemax signals to watch any of those average Tom Berrenger movies. (I imagine he needed new underwear too.)

But that's not what makes him lucky. This is why he's so fortunate.

"The (Eric Holder's) Justice Department could bring charges against
a Somali pirate captured in a hostage standoff in the high seas...."

Lucky No. 4 will soon be winging his way back to a nice, safe jail cell in the US mainland. He'll have the best medical care (and probably the only dental care) he's experienced in his life, eating three-squares of his favorite ethnically/religiously sensitive foods, sleeping above the floor on lice- and bedbug-free beds. But best of all, he'll have the pick of the litter from this country's criminal defense lawyers, most likely assisted by the ACLU, to help him beat this rap.

I can hear it now:

"Honest judge, I was minding my own business, walking down the street, when these pirates came along, made me to get into their car and forced me join them on this boat-raiding mission. I'm innocent."

He'll probably sue for wrongful prosecution and emotional duress, and get a nice judgement by a jury for mistaken identity and the inevitable mishandling by military captors and penal system employees.

In other words, he doesn't know how good he now has it. Getting picked up by the US military was the best thing to happen to this guy in his entire, pathetic lifetime.

Sniping on Pirates

  • There the USA goes again, unilaterally brandishing its sword at the drop of a hat! We should have just been patient and taken this to the UN, and let the world body work things out.
  • This policy of shooting hostage-taking pirates is simply not working. We need a new course, a new vision; we need a president who doesn’t resort to military answer to everything. Only then can we regain our international stature.
  • Oh, just great! Now our mariners will be even MORE at risk of piracy because of this success. Those people are going to be much “less safe” because of this successful policy, not more safe.
  • Why didn't we allow time for diplomacy to work its course? OR to impose sanctions to show our displeasure?
  • Why must violence be the answer? Are we saying that one American life is more valuable than these three Somalis?
  • Why don't we get to know the plight of these poor, destitute pirates whose terrible living conditions drive them to do such things? Did we consider that this might be their only recourse to survive?
  • Who are we to say that their actions or right or wrong? Maybe this is just their culture, their worldview; after all, they haven’t actually killed anybody before. All they wanted was money to feed their poor countrymen.
  • This is ALL about oil, plain and simple. Can't have the shipping lanes in danger so the US can get it's precious oil out for its gas-guzzling SUVs and climate-changing electrical power plants.
  • And I'll bet Haliburton is involved in here somewhere.

Thursday, April 09, 2009

"And that's the way it is...."

Next week, (April 15) “Perky” Katie Couric (homage to Rush) will receive the Walter Cronkite award for her torpedoing of Sarah Palin during the campaign. (Note: Get this, the “award” is presented by “the USC Annenberg Norman Lear Center at the University of Southern California…” Anything pretending to be unbiased or objective with the name Normal Lear attached to it is LAUGHABLE)

A press post on Couric’s site proclaims:

“Evening News anchor Katie Couric was honored for her
"extraordinary, persistent and detailed multi-part interviews with Republican
vice-presidential candidate Sarah Palin" which judges called a "defining moment
in the 2008 presidential campaign." She was given the award for Special
Achievement for National Impact on the 2008 Campaign.

Today, John Ziegler a blogger on “Big Hollywood” is spot-on with his observation that there exists a double standard when it comes to this award:

“And is there any doubt whatsoever that had Couric asked the exact same questions and Palin had been perceived as having performed well (or if one of her softball interviews with Barack Obama had brought down his candidacy) that there would be no awards for her from USC or anyone else of note?”

Editor’s Note: Ziegler is working on a documentary about the shenanigans perpetrated by our friends in the Fourth Estate. You can hear clips of Sarah’s version of the Katie interview and judge for yourself. Check it out.

Now, I too shudder at the mere mention of Perky Katie (in general) and double shiver thinking about Walter’s Award going to Katie. I do realize Sarah was set-up for a fall, and that the media would have treated (and did) Democratic candidates differently. How Obama avoids getting questioned about his pick for VP running mate, the same guy who casually dismissed him as a serious Democrat presidential contender with “… the first mainstream African-American who is articulate and bright and clean and a nice-looking guy…” is beyond me.

Having said all that, I'm sorry, but sometimes we have to own up and accept a problem. Thus it’s right around here where I depart from the Party Line.

I'm in the communications business and can plainly tell you that SOMEbody in that campaign should have known better about a LOT of things dealing with that interview—either Sarah or her PR staff. If the staff failed, then shame on them and Sarah should either say so (better yet, not say anything.) If the staff DID prep her sufficiently, then this was a case of “operator error” and Sarah needs to accept blame.

Since this debacle, I've wondered about the extent of the media training she had received either before the nomination or during the campaign. (For those who consider "Media Training" a dirty word taken to mean prepped to be evasive, not candid or untruthful, then think "experience being interviewed").

I've trained clients before. There were steps The McCain Campaign could have taken to avoid this possibility or mitigate the aftermath, but I don't know if they were pursued.

First – Media Training (or at least, practice). Some clients take to training like ducks to water; others don't do so well. One would assume that as an elected state governor, she's done an interview or two. But even so, with all due respects, that's Alaska TV; Perky Katie (like it or not) was the Big Leagues. Sarah looked like AA-rookie.

Second—The media’s not your friend. Perhaps Sarah’s natural personality is to be trusting. Best Case: Maybe Katie’s non-recorded, pre-interview cooing and fawning “girl-talk” in the Green Room beguiled Sarah into lowering her defenses. Worst case: Sarah is close to what she appeared to be – unprepared and uninformed. Whatever was the case, SOMEbody has to remind the interviewee – especially Republicans – that the news media is NOT your friend, never let your guard down and be ready!

Third—Pre-interview intelligence. Somebody has GOT to know something about the line of questioning; those ground rules are negotiated as part of the interview booking process. You certainly can’t ask for questions in advance, and you shouldn’t expect the reporter to stick to an agreement EVEN IF they agreed. But much like anyone who is caught on a “Borat” film – you HAVE to know what you’re getting into; if you don't, you get no sympathy from me.

Fourth—At least know the background on positions YOUR campaign is putting out. One of Katie’s questions followed up a campaign message that John McCain had been way out in front of the Subprime and Fanny Mae/Freddy Mac mess screaming “danger, danger” to the deaf eared news media and a disinterested public. Sarah didn’t have a “two-deep” message (or understanding) for a comeback, and it showed.

Fifth—You shouldn’t have to prep or train or practice giving honest, straightforward answers to relevant questions. This wasn’t as bad as the “Can you name the general who is in charge of Pakistan?" question George Bush was sandbagged with by a BBC reporter during the primaries before the 2000 campaign. THAT is a gotcha question.

“What do you read?” isn’t hard to answer if you DO read; it is if you don’t.

Sixth—The campaign should have taken a page out of Herbalife’s 20/20 experience. Stipulated to all interviews that the Campaign would also be permitted to tape the interview concurrently and have the rights to use (and streamed it on YouTube) after the spot aired on CBS. If it was “gotcha-edited” you could have let the public see for themselves -- and shamed the Eye Network at the same time.

I’m sorry, Sarah or her team has got to own this one.