horses and saddles sold cheap and other metaphors

Saturday, July 31, 2004

Debunking the 59 Deceits vs Fifty-nine Deceits in Fahrenheit 9/11. Moore engages in a little hyperbole, but easier for the wing nuttery to smear then deal with the fact that the major points that Moore makes are correct. Moore is not a wonk, he truly is a pro-labor everyman. The myths that he creates are far less mendacious then those created by the extreme right. Newmax is already running stories about Warrior John's supposed communist connections. Moore has nothing to be ashamed of, while most conservatives are so morally blind they have no shame.

Think Again: The Word 'Liberal'
What do our opponents mean when they apply to us the label "Liberal?" If by "Liberal" they mean, as they want people to believe, someone who is soft in his policies abroad, who is against local government, and who is unconcerned with the taxpayer's dollar, then … we are not that kind of "Liberal." But if by a "Liberal" they mean someone who looks ahead and not behind, someone who welcomes new ideas without rigid reactions, someone who cares about the welfare of the people -- their health, their housing, their schools, their jobs, their civil rights, and their civil liberties -- someone who believes we can break through the stalemate and suspicions that grip us in our policies abroad, if that is what they mean by a "Liberal," then I'm proud to say I'm a "Liberal."

- John F. Kennedy, September 14, 1960

Eric Alterman uses the above quote as a preface to an excellent piece on liberialism vs. the extreme shall we say un-american right. I think un-american applies because they seem to have abandoned all those values that constitute american ideals. The rightists have turned honor and integrity, freedom and the constitution, values and respect into a meaningless doublespeak. They have, through the bastardization of language undermined the political ideals that while we have always struggled to achieve, have always lived in our hearts.

Friday, July 30, 2004

O'Reilly wrong about PBS, Bill Moyers

Coward and anti-american pundit Spin O'Reilly says that PBS is going under and that no one watchs and everyone hates one of America's greatest patriots Bill Moyers as much as he does.
Though its 2004 budget is not readily available, PBS's 2003 annual report disclosed net assets in excess of $184 million. On January 10, the Associated Press reported: "The flow of corporate money to PBS has increased after a three-year dry spell."

Plenty of people watch PBS. Citing the Nielsen Television Index, PBS's website reports: "Over 87 million people in 51 million households watched public television during an average week of the 2002-2003 television season."

he (Bill Moyer) announced in February that he planned to leave NOW with Bill Moyers voluntarily after the November elections. Philadelphia Inquirer columnist Gail Shister reported on February 23 that "[w]ithin hours of PBS's announcement Thursday that Moyers, host of NOW with Bill Moyers, would step down after the November elections, he got pitches from three networks."

Spin-boy is off his meds again or maybe he was out with neo-facists Dennis Miller and took a hit of bad acid.

"Of all the preposterous assumptions of humanity over humanity, nothing exceeds most of the criticisms made on the habits of the poor by the well-housed, well- warmed, and well-fed."
- Herman Melville

Thursday, July 29, 2004

DNA decipherer Francis Crick dies
Nobel Prize-winning scientist Francis Crick, who co-discovered the spiral, “double-helix” structure of DNA in 1953 and opened the way for everything from gene-spliced crops and medicines to DNA fingerprinting and the genetic detection of diseases, has died. He was 88.

Watson and Crick benefited from work by researchers Maurice Wilkins and Rosalind Franklin of King’s College in London. Wilkins shared the Nobel with the two men; Franklin died in 1958. Nobel prizes are not awarded posthumously.

Not to take any thunder from Crick, but I always thought that Rosalind Franklin not recieving a Nobel was a tragedy.

Wednesday, July 28, 2004

How to Change the World: Social Entrepreneurs and the Power of New Ideas
A quote from the author David Bornstein, "Across the world, social entrepreneurs are demonstrating new approaches to many social ills and new models to create social wealth, promote social well-being, and restore the environment."

Phil Carter at Intel-Dump breaks from his usual excellent posts on military analysis to talk about Lance "Superman" Armstrong. . I watched every minute of Le Tour, just incredible, amazing and he's a nice guy by all reports. Congradulations Lance and the rest of the team.

Tuesday, July 27, 2004

Faith and the Case for Kerry-Edwards. Amy Sullivan is awsome.

Questions Worth Asking

If there’s one old photo every American should see, it’s the one of Reagan emissary Don Rumsfeld shaking Saddam’s hand before calling him “friend.” His mission: to tell Saddam that while the U.S. would officially condemn his gassing of the Kurds, we still considered Saddam our boy against Iran.

I used to think that maybe I was being an unrealistic utopian by thinking that people should look long and hard at the decisions their leaders make and the ideology they espouse, and ask themselves if these "leaders" are truly acting in the best interests of the people. Then on reflection I realized that I wasn't being overly idealistic, I just dream of the bare minimum of idealism and activism from my follow humans. Hardcore ideologues like Bush or Saddam exploit whatever they can; ignorance, intellectual laziness, misplaced nationalism.

Monday, July 26, 2004

A house made of straw The Straw House Blog

Mr. O’Reilly, please just stop.
Mr. O’Reilly,
You have declared a “war” on the New York Times. That’s good for you, good for them, and good for our democracy: Strong opinions deserve strong spokesmen. Your battle will help sharpen a debate about matters important to the Republic.

But in waging this “war,” you are continuing to abuse a man whom you have wronged, and to whom you owe an apology.

The Glick story is old news, but Spin O'Really continues to flog it. O'Really has declared war on every one and every American value at point; including free speech, freedom of religion, freedom to petition, freedom of peaceful protest, right to a fair trial. America has to asks itself, is Spin O'Really an American or a mentally unstable fake patriot.

Sunday, July 25, 2004

Billmon looks at the Minimum Wage and indirectly points out that much of what we consider the prosperous middle-class would not have been possible without changing the fundamental nuclear family. That is the Dad that brings home the bacon and the stay at home Mom.
The answer, of course, is that the chart only tells part of the story. It doesn't reflect the massive influx of women into the workforce in the '70s and '80s - a social trend which turned many, and then most, U.S. families into dual-income households. That's primarily were the money came from to support the steady rise in personal consumption - that plus ample amounts of personal debt.

It may be semantics, but I think that the "influx" of women into the job market was as much a social trend as much as it was economic necessity. In order for that generation and future generations to afford things like home ownership that adults of the 1940's and 50's could buy with one salary, we needed two salaries to buy. Yes, it was a social trend too, with more women getting a college education and wanting some kind of personal fulfillment outside of marriage. Democrats understand this worldview among 21st century women better then Republicans and goes to a large part of the reason that the majority of women are moderate to liberal. Economic conservatives are, ironically partly to blame. They pushed the concept of property and consumption equals happiness, but never addressed the avenues by which women could achieve full consumer status rather then household account managers for their husbands. To spend, one needs income. To persue one's interests, one needs to be at least some degree outside the home. Not all men, but most men saw the advantages of having a true partner both in terms of income and sharing interests other then what the kids got on their report cards. Woman had more interests and became more interesting, as did their relationships. While many modern couples may bemoan the lack of free time, there is no going back. Whether its a new home or SUV, for most people that will mean dual incomes for the foreseeable future. So thanks all you wall street and madison avenue materialists for dropping the ball and pushing women our way.
Note: religious conservatives you know who to thank too.

New York City and 8 States Plan to Sue Power Plants
Many of the states in this suit as well as others have used suits to pressure out-of-state utilities to curtail nitrogen and sulfur emissions that travel long distances. Other suits have been filed by states and private organizations against the Environmental Protection Agency over carbon dioxide, saying the agency had failed to restrict the gas as a pollutant under the Clean Air Act despite growing evidence that it posed risks.

But the new suit is the first state legal action taken directly against companies that discharge carbon dioxide, an unavoidable byproduct of burning coal, oil and other fossil fuels.

This would all be unnecessary if the Bush administration would let the EPA and the Justice Department do their jobs and enforce existing laws. The law suits will be paid for by local taxes that could go toward education, crime prevention, or scholarships, but why would an extremists cabal of no cows cowboys start thinking about the consequences of their actions. I guess when you're selected by the courts, rather elected by the people you don't have to look out for the interests of the people or their children.

But then a funny thing happened: the African-American spokesperson for Project 21 caught a flat on the way to the studio, and the group's director had to fill in. And he was white.

But Project 21 is a subsidiary of the National Center for Public Policy Research (NCPPR), which, according to the liberal watchdog, was formed in the 1980s to support Reagan's military interventions in Central America. NCPPR's leadership – president, vice president, executive director – are all white. Amy Ridenour, former Deputy Director of the College Republican National Committee and the organization's president, also sits on the board of Black America's PAC, an organization that claims to be nonpartisan but whose IRS filings state that its mission is to elect Republicans.

NCPPR's directors are also all white.

Not that a white guy can't represent and respect an African-American's interests, but its worth noting that these guys ahve a record of using people. Its ironic that Republicans long ago adpted Spike Lee's motto, " by any means neccessary." With all trends pointing toward a solid progressive liberal electorate in the next few years, this and conservative fear mongering smack of desparation.

My Ecosystem Details