Wednesday, April 25, 2007

I Feel Proud

After watching the PBS special, Bill Moyers Journal, "Buying The War" for a second time tonight -- I must admit that I feel proud.

Proud that from the beginning, all along (and against all odds) I had the critical thinking skills and independence of thought to see through the propaganda and collusion between the Bush Administration and the US mainstream media.

I challenge you. I challenge you to actually watch the reports linked to below.

Chapter 1
Chapter 2
Chapter 3
Chapter 4
Chapter 5

If you care one whit about America or our troops - watch it; if you believe you live in reality - watch it; if you think I am a partisan hack - watch it; if you have the ability to view something with an open mind and heart that may reframe your experience of history - watch it; Readers, I cannot urge you strongly enough to please watch all 5 chapters linked to above.

While the story is primarily about the failings of a so-called "liberal" or "independent" media, it documents the Presidents and his top advisors treasonous acts against America and its citizens.

And by the way..... prepare yourself.

Prepare yourself because now that there is no longer a strangle hold on the media, you will likely see future expose's on the impact, spin, propaganda and criminality perpetrated by this President, his administration, and the GOP in most all other areas of life as we know it. From the true impact of the tax cuts; the true harm of its health policies; the incompetence and cronyism seen in national security, Katrina, Iraq, global warming, energy policies, disastrous fiscal policies, deficit management, politics above the people, globalization, merging of church and state, literally in every area of life.


Bill Moyers: Journalistic Integrity Personified (my new hero, it's love)

Finally. After 5 long years. Journalist Bill Moyers, whose credentials are above reproach, has NAILED the story of the century. How mainstream media betrayed America, Americans and truth in journalism.


Watch Bill Moyers: CLICK HERE
"Buying the War"

Four years ago on May 1, President Bush landed on the aircraft carrier USS Lincoln and delivered a speech in front of a giant "Mission Accomplished" banner. Despite profound questions and the increasing violence in Baghdad, many in the press confirmed the White House's claim that the war was won. How did they get it so wrong? How did the evidence disputing the existence of weapons of mass destruction and the link between Saddam Hussein and 9/11 continue to go largely unreported?

...He [Bush] was hailed by media stars as a "breathtaking" example of presidential leadership in toppling Saddam Hussein. Despite profound questions over the failure to locate weapons of mass destruction and the increasing violence in Baghdad, many in the press confirmed the White House's claim that the war was won. MSNBC's Chris Matthews declared, "We're all neo-cons now;" NPR's Bob Edwards said, "The war in Iraq is essentially over;" and Fortune magazine's Jeff Birnbaum said, "It is amazing how thorough the victory in Iraq really was in the broadest context."

How did the mainstream press get it so wrong? How did the evidence disputing the existence of weapons of mass destruction and the link between Saddam Hussein to 9-11 continue to go largely unreported? "What the conservative media did was easy to fathom; they had been cheerleaders for the White House from the beginning and were simply continuing to rally the public behind the President — no questions asked. How mainstream journalists suspended skepticism and scrutiny remains an issue of significance that the media has not satisfactorily explored," says Moyers. "How the administration marketed the war to the American people has been well covered, but critical questions remain: How and why did the press buy it, and what does it say about the role of journalists in helping the public sort out fact from propaganda?"

On Wednesday, April 25 at 9 p.m. on PBS, a new PBS series BILL MOYERS JOURNAL premieres at a special time with "Buying the War," a 90-minute documentary that explores the role of the press in the lead-up to the invasion of Iraq. Two days later on April 27, BILL MOYERS JOURNAL airs in its regular timeslot on Fridays at 9 p.m. with interviews and news analysis on a wide range of subjects, including politics, arts and culture, the media, the economy, and issues facing democracy. "Buying the War" includes interviews with Dan Rather, formerly of CBS; Tim Russert of MEET THE PRESS; Bob Simon of 60 MINUTES; Walter Isaacson, former president of CNN; and John Walcott, Jonathan Landay and Warren Strobel of Knight Ridder newspapers, which was acquired by The McClatchy Company in 2006.

In "Buying the War" Bill Moyers and producer Kathleen Hughes document the reporting of Walcott, Landay and Strobel, the Knight Ridder team that burrowed deep into the intelligence agencies to try and determine whether there was any evidence for the Bush Administration's case for war. "Many of the things that were said about Iraq didn't make sense," says Walcott. "And that really prompts you to ask, 'Wait a minute. Is this true? Does everyone agree that this is true? Does anyone think this is not true?'"

In the run-up to war, skepticism was a rarity among journalists inside the Beltway. Journalist Bob Simon of 60 Minutes, who was based in the Middle East, questioned the reporting he was seeing and reading. "I mean we knew things or suspected things that perhaps the Washington press corps could not suspect. For example, the absurdity of putting up a connection between Saddam Hussein and Al Qaeda," he tells Moyers. "Saddam…was a total control freak. To introduce a wild card like Al Qaeda in any sense was just something he would not do. So I just didn't believe it for an instant."

The program analyzes the stream of unchecked information from administration sources and Iraqi defectors to the mainstream print and broadcast press, which was then seized upon and amplified by an army of pundits. While almost all the claims would eventually prove to be false, the drumbeat of misinformation about WMDs went virtually unchallenged by the media.

THE NEW YORK TIMES reported on Iraq's "worldwide hunt for materials to make an atomic bomb," but according to Landay, claims by the administration about the possibility of nuclear weapons were highly questionable. Yet, his story citing the "lack of hard evidence of Iraqi weapons" got little play.

In fact, throughout the media landscape, stories challenging the official view were often pushed aside while the administration's claims were given prominence. "From August 2002 until the war was launched in March of 2003 there were about 140 front page pieces in THE WASHINGTON POST making the administration's case for war," says Howard Kurtz, the POST's media critic. "But there was only a handful of stories that ran on the front page that made the opposite case. Or, if not making the opposite case, raised questions."

"Buying the War" examines the press coverage in the lead-up to the war as evidence of a paradigm shift in the role of journalists in democracy and asks, four years after the invasion, what's changed? "More and more the media become, I think, common carriers of administration statements and critics of the administration," says THE WASHINGTON POST's Walter Pincus. "We've sort of given up being independent on our own."

Monday, April 23, 2007

Real Estate Roller-coaster

Robert Shiller, a Yale University economist, has taken the time and trouble to index American home purchase prices going all the back to 1890.

Enter Richard Hodge, a blogger at

Richard plotted Shiller's inflation-adjusted index into Atari's Roller Coaster Tycoon 3, a game where users create, then ride, their own roller-coaster.

Enjoy the ride!

Sunday, April 22, 2007

Revealed: Secrets of the Magic 8 Ball

I must admit it. I've loved the Magic 8 Ball since my childhood. Hours were spent with a girlfriend (her brother owned the mystical fortune telling device) asking every sort of question.

It took ages for us to tire of playing with the Magic 8 Ball, but eventually we moved on. But not before we went through transition every child goes through with the toy. That is the transition from question-asking to curiosity about how the damn thing works!

For those who may never have opened their beloved Magic 8 Ball, I offer the following exhibit showing a Magic 8 Ball Autopsy. (click "continue" at the bottom of each frame)

Museum of Freaky Food

I've found a pretty cool web site,, and they've got some fun exhibits. I am posting two.

The first is hanttula's Museum of Food Anomalies, wherein a viewer gets to see freaky foods. You know, the grilled cheese sandwich with an image of the Virgin Mary. Or, the Happy Face potato chip.


Friday, April 20, 2007

Funny: But Too Bad It's True

"On Capitol Hill, Attorney General Alberto Gonzales raised his right hand, swore to tell the truth, and then everybody had a good laugh and went back to what they were doing."
---Jay Leno

"News has just broke that the administration is seeking a high-powered "war czar" to oversee the campaigns in Iraq and Afghanistan. So there you have it folks---five years into the global war on terror the president believes it is now time for someone to be in charge of it."
---Jon Stewart

"Rudy Giuliani got in trouble because, y'know that presidential question they ask: "What's the price of a gallon of milk?" He didn’t know. That doesn’t bother me, really, if a president doesn’t know. What I want to know [is], does the president know the price of a war with Iraq?"
---Craig Ferguson

"Republican Congressman Duncan Hunter has filed papers to run for president. But in his official filing, he misspelled the word 'president.' Political experts say it's all part of Hunter's plan to attract Bush supporters."
---Conan O'Brien

"It was announced that Hooters would open one of its restaurants in Israel this summer. So much for keeping the meat separate from the dairy."
---Amy Poehler

"In 200 years, we've gone from "We the people," to "Up With People." From "the best and the brightest" to "dumb and dumber." And where better to find people dumb enough to believe in George Bush than Pat Robertson's law school? The problem here in America isn't that the country is being run by "elites." It's that it's being run by a bunch of hayseeds. And, by the way, the lawyer Monica Goodling just hired to keep her ass out of jail...went to a real law school."
---Bill Maher
Thank you to Bill in Portland Maine for compiling the snark

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

You Fuck, You Die

The decision handed down by Bush's Supreme Court of the United States represents a very dark day in history for all American women.

I have stolen and posted, wholesale, an important blog post that reflects precisely how I feel. THANK YOU MARYSCOTT O'CONNOR!

A friend of mine said he wanted to start a blog to document and explore the reprehensible act of so-called "honor killings" of women around the world. You know, where the husbands, fathers, and/or brothers of women have given themselves the "right" to literally be judge, jury and executioner of females who they deem to have impinged family honor for any number of minor acts of personal self-determination.

The ban against late term Intact D&E terminations is just that: Five conservative male (Roberts and Alito having lied their way in prior to the 2007 Dem takeover) Supreme Court Justices have just upheld Bush Administration's "ban" on late term terminations with no waiver if the mother's life is in danger. In otherwords, they've legalized the "Honor Killing" of America's women. If you fuck, you die.

Read it and weep. God, give me the strength to survive - and change - what the Christian Jihadists, the GOP, and George W. Bush have done to my fucking country.


You F***, You Die
by Maryscott OConnor
Wed Apr 18, 2007 at 12:19:49 PM PDT

Crossposted from MY LEFT WING

It was the day that changed everything

5 Supreme Court Justices, not one possessed of a uterus, cervix, vagina or medical degree among them, have seen fit to pass a death sentence on any woman whose late term pregnancy threatens her life and necessitates a safe procedure to end it.

It hardly seems suitable to say "I told you so," but what the hell...


I, and millions of women and men not blinded by craven obeisance to political "propriety" and the fear of losing a seat of dubious power.

So, to the Alito Nineteen, a collective of putrescent, cowering, rotted remnants of what MIGHT once have been decent human beings, now merely another set of cowards in Democrats's clothing, we say to you, Thanks for killing us.

Make no mistake, that is EXACTLY what the federal ban on late-term abortions is: a death sentence upon any woman whose life depends on a safe medical procedure to end an unviable pregnancy.

I'll say it again:

5 Supreme Court Justices, not one possessed of a uterus, cervix, vagina or medical degree among them, have seen fit to pass a death sentence on any woman whose late term pregnancy threatens her life and necessitates a safe procedure to end it.

I shake with rage and sorrow for every woman in this country who now must fear every step of those last few months of a pregnancy, not only for the health of a baby whose arrival she awaits, but now as well for her own health and life, lest anything go awry with that pregnancy, leaving her with NO choice but to carry the pregnancy to term, be the fetus alive or barely, viable or no.

Of course, there is a way to avoid all this messiness, young ladies -- just don't have sex.

Abstinence -- yeah, that's the solution. Except, of course, we're not really talking about preventing abortions, here, are we?

What those 5 MEN on the Supreme Court have done is not to prevent abortions or premarital sex, not to dissuade such things from happening nor to make illegal anything related to them -- except, of course, should the situation arise in which the sex a woman has had results in a late-term pregnancy that needs to be terminated for her health or to save her life.

No, the perverse sonsofbitches and their Congressional co-conspirators have merely made it illegal for a doctor to treat properly and safely a patient whose pregnancy, taken so long to term that it is obviously a WANTED pregnancy, has become a danger to her.

To what end?

My dear friend shanikka, an attorney and thus far better equipped to translate the language of the Supreme Court decision (pdf), has this to say about it:

Some of the language in the majority opinion is fucking scary. The Scalia/Alito majority are not even trying to hide it: this is about upholding their neanderthal patriarchal views on not only the concept of pregnancy, but on what women are supposed to think and feel about their biological role as potential mothers period (count the number of times some variant of the phrase "a woman feels" or "women feel" appears in Kennedy's majority opinion if you really want to be scared) and the duty of the state to make sure that they are "protected" from those who might act based on feelings inconsistent with that biologically-defined role as joyous vessels of potential human life.

As if any of the five dick-swinging cosigners onto the majority opinion can ever say what women collectively feel. They haven't even pretended to be dispassionately applying law to the factual record below - indeed, as Ginsberg points out, they've largely ignored it and their own precedential language in Casey and Sternberg to boot. All because of what they admit early on is concern about the "morality" of it all.

I referred to it above, but in case anyone has any doubt as to what those 5 men on the Supreme Court have done, what medical procedure they have now outlawed, the fact that it is, in fact, an actual MEDICAL PROCEDURE, performed rarely and virtually ALWAYS when only absolutely necessary, here is a link to an essay I wrote about the procedure itself:

Abortion: Intact Dilation & Extraction

That is the procedure's true name, by the way; if anyone reading this doesn't already know this, that grotesque mockery of a nickname for it, "partial birth abortion" is a complete misnomer, an utter fabrication designed SOLELY to persuade the ignorant that the procedure is some barbaric act wherein a live baby is brought screaming into the world and killed before its mother's eyes. Complete horseshit; the vast majority of fetuses terminated by intact dilation and extraction are so lacking inviability that breathing, let alone screaming, is an impossibility. But don't take my word for it: PLEASE, do the reading, do the research yourtself, instead of taking the word of the lying liars whose sole aim seems to be to cast us all back to the days of back-alley abortions and punishing women for having sex -- or, put more simply, for being born female.

Make no mistake... if they have their way, that is what will happen. And then, then we will be seeing a lot more of this:

Sunday, April 15, 2007

Crocodile Bites Off Zookeeper's Arm: It Didn't Taste Like Chicken

Good god. Did you see that first pic? Do you realize what you're seeing?!?

Evidently the guy is okay and they've reattached the forearm, but how intense is that photo !?!

All I could think is.... "I wonder why it's curled into a fist?"...

and.... "It looks kinda blue"...

and... "It sure fits perfectly into the nook between the big teeth."

and.... "Hmmmmm. No watch and no wedding ring. Oh, wrong arm. No it's not - I must have dyslexia."

and.... "I wonder why the croc didn't swallow that thing whole?"....

and.... "If the croc had swollowed it whole, would the zoo have killed the croc in an attempt to retrieve the zookeeper's forearm before it started to get digested?"...

and.... "I wonder how digested a forearm can get before it's too late to try reattachment."

Alas, no answers are forthcoming from the direction of where my mind wanders. I just had to get this, errr.. "tidbit" posted before my political rant.

UPDATE: Watch the video

Coming Attractions: Righteous Rant

I am giving fair warning that all the silliness of the prior posts are deceptive, I am preparing to post a righteous rant about.....

White House Using Non-governmental communication systems for official (and illegal) business.

I've been studying this since I first learned of White House staffer Susan Ralston (Karl Rove's assistant) communicating with her former boss (convicted felon Jack Abramoff) about the need to NOT communicate over the offical White House email system. It's been about a year, I'd say.

And now of course, the issue has emerged again the face of the US Attorney firings. They guys are such fucking criminals I can't even comprehend how corrupt they've been and how badly they've harmed America. (that's a rant for a different day)


Don't Click Here

Don't click the following link if you don't feel like being annoyed and disgusted at how juvenile I can be.

Don't Click Here

Told you so. You just HAD to click didn't you? You have to learn to trust me. I simply have your best interest at heart. Oh well, the damage is done. Next time consider heeding my warning.


My Kind of Map: Real-time Global Disasters!!!

I haven't been able to figure out how to do a "screen capture" so I don't have a pic/image for this post. You're just going to have to click on the following link for the.... (drum roll, please)

Map of Bad News

Which shows, in real time, the locations and types of global disasters! Simply click on an icon to get the scoop, low down, info and details!

See plane crashes, earth quakes, tornados, biological scares, nuclear radioactivity leaks, volcanic erruptions, bus accidents, tsunami's, pestilence, locusts, storms, floods, and all host and manner of breaking bad news around the world!

I've known for quite some time that I am a little quirky. Given that I find this interesting, some would consider it confirmation of my odd personality.



Friday, April 13, 2007

I've Been Thinking: Hard

It's Friday April 13th, and believe it or not I had bad luck today. Let me explain.

First, I want to preface this post by saying that I have NEVER put stock in superstition, especially that any Friday the 13th is bad luck. In fact, I've found quite the opposite - that typically it means I usually have a pretty good day.

So, anyone who's half conscious knows that the winds howled gale force last night and into this morning. I live in a pretty wooded area, so it doesn't take much wind to knock out electical power in my neck of the... well.... woods (ahem)

Last night was no exception to the "mild wind = no power" equation at work in my world. Except that the winds were exceptionally strong.

Usually it's no big deal. I have a drawer full of candles, an big red flame-throwing lighter do-hickey, and have recently become enamoured of the new cheap L.E.D. light sources (they run off a small battery for like 100,000 hours).

I was lulled to sleep, in the dark of night, without power, by the sound of howling winds (which I love, along with the sound of rain).

I was rudely awakened when my french doors blew open at some ungodly hour. It was so windy that I had to prop them closed by wedging my table against them (evidently the male door knob thingly doesn't fit properly into the female door jamb orifice, which prevents a proper tight fit, and thusly results in a, ahhhh, "unsatisfactory closure" as it were). (it's been a challenge making this paragraph vaguely sexual - the stupid things I do to amuse myself should be embarrasing)(forgive me)

Okay, so pitch black night, check. No electricity, check. Blown open door, check. Proped table, check. Howling wind, check. Crash? Did I just hear a crash? What in the HELL was that crash? I check out the bedroom window, nothing. I check out the kitchen window, nothing. (I don't dare look out the kitchen door, but that's another story.) I can't see anything amiss, so it's back to bed for me.

I wake this morning and the electricity has only just come back on. Coffee is delicious, it looks like one tree has been uprooted... and what's that? The neighbors metal and canvas gazebo appears to have flown out of their yard and landed on........ ......... ....... my fucking car.

I don't believe it. It's landed on MY FUCKING CAR. There's a wrought iron gazebo on my car. Oh. And, it's Friday the 13th.

Two dents to the roof aint half bad - god I feel lucky!


I wanted you to know that I am working on several different posts, which have been delayed due to my impending participation in a wedding on Saturday. Sunday will be the multiple post day - lot's of new stuff...... !

Friday, April 6, 2007

Effective: French AIDS Posters

Jesus. This is creepy. And effective.


Thursday, April 5, 2007

I've Been A Little Tied Up.....

I'll post a few entries as soon as I become available.


Sunday, April 1, 2007

My God: She's Ugly

Well. Knock me over with a feather. I can hardly believe it (I guess I just never saw a detailed photo of her).

Nicole Kidman is ugly.

What is it about her upper lip? Fat in the corners and thin up top? What?

Check out those eyelids - she looks asian (time for a lift sweetie).

There's an odd bit of flesh protruding from the side of her face (implant?).

Her hair resembles that of a cancer patient with a bad comb-over. It's thin, crinkly looking and has short bits sticking up.

Am I crazy? Is this the worst photo of Nicole you've ever seen? I always thought she was classic looking (if a bit of an ice queen). Tall, thin, stately, groomed to within an inch of her life. An unconventional beauty, but beautiful nonetheless.

Okay, my snark is all in fun. But honestly, what's up with this terrible pic! A word of advice to Nicole: have your PR gofer yank this one back from the public domain.

I have to say, there once existed a single photograph of me so heinous that when I saw it I nearly went into cardiac arrest. Needless to say it doesn't exist any longer. Let me tell you the story.

Some years ago I went to Las Vegas on a business trip. My colleague and I went to the "Stratosphere" sight-seeing building. At that time there were two "rides" (aka torture devices) on the top. One ride being a rollercoster contraption that was affixed on the EXTERIOR of the widest part of the structure. The other ride being a car that rides straight up and down the Stratosphere's spire.

At the time, it seemed more safe to partake in the ride that went straight up over the roof structure rather than the ride that dangled over the edge without benefit of safety net. I should have known better.

We climbed into a car, sitting upright, and a harness came down over our shoulders. About the time I realized that my harness didn't lock down, the fucking car took off into the air without a shred of warning. The G-forces alone from the initial take-off peeled my lower eyelids and corners of my open, screaming maw down. It was possibly the single moment in my life of utter, sheer, uncompromised terror.

As luck would have it, the ride designers built in a camera that catches with perfect precision that fraction of an instant. So when you climb off the ride in your piss soaked glory they attempt to sell patrons the photographic evidence of one's folly.

I hadn't realized that a photo had been taken and the expression I saw on my face literally defies description - other than to say I looked like a monster.

So, in an odd way I sympathize with Nicole.