Saturday, July 31, 2004

Crappy Days Are Here Again

Much has been made over the musical intros and outros at the Democratic National Convention. In the spirit of bipartisanship, and since Ed Gillespie and Ken Mehlman know more about hit jobs than hit records, Roger Ailes is holding a contest to help the G.O.P. select a soundtrack for its late August convention.

Nominate an actual song for a particular speaker or for the entire convention.

Prizes of some sort (most likely intangible -- virture is its own reward) may or may not be awarded.

To kick things off, here's an excerpt from my recommendation (not eligible for the competition):

Just love those laser guided bombs
They're really great for righting wrongs
You hit the target and win the game from bars
three thousand miles away
three thousand miles away
We play the game with the bravery of being out of range
We zap and maim with the bravery of being out of range....

Robert Byrd Posted by Hello

Just watched Senator Robert Byrd give it to Bush on C-SPAN2, following an introduction by Senator Hillary Clinton.

Immediately before: A talk by James Taranto at the Manhattan Institute, with an introduction by Peggums Noonan.

Night and day.

Cletus, The Slack-Jawed Blogger

Charles Cooper, the executive editor of "CNET," doesn't like what he saw ... and I'm not talking about the view from the mirror. He's talking about the blogger

With a few exceptions, most of the credentialed bloggers came off like cyberhayseeds in the big city. Many dared for the painfully obvious as they updated their posts. Most of the blogging entries I have read ranged from the insufferably pedantic to the sublimely mediocre. There were exceptions, of course, but the see-me, hear-me tenor of their reporting was only exceeded by the vapidity of the banal commentaries peddled as analyses.

Coop's speaking more in sorrow than in anger.

Truth be told, it's especially frustrating to have to write these lines, because I still believe blogging is one of the most exciting developments of the last five years.

Yes, convention bloggers, no matter how much you smile at Coop, you'll never take the place of Peter Duchin in his heart. You're all a bunch of rusticated bumpkins, says Coop.

But as they took their place alongside other credentialed media, bloggers finally had to put up or shut up. I don't know how many would ever admit this gig was a lot more difficult than it looked from the outside. But with the pressure on to work under the constraints mainstream hacks have to contend with on a daily basis--get the story, get it right in all its complexity, and oh, by the way, get it 10 minutes ago--they were found wanting.

I must have missed the part where part where TalkLeft and Pacific Views were given million-dollar techonology budgets and staffs of hundreds to cover the convention.

In truth, bloggers did things the mainstream media and Coop didn't do -- like ask Bob Novak who criminally exposed Valerie Plame. You won't see that on CNN or Press the Meat.

It's hard to tell what Charles Cooper expected the attendees to do -- did some unexpected news occur at the convention that bloggers got scooped on? Was he expecting the bloggers' take on funny hats? I guess the pressure of writing filler for an advertising supplement has turned Coop bitter.

Friday, July 30, 2004

Equal Time

A message from George W. Bush.

The Bush Economy

WASHINGTON - Homeland Security Secretary Tom Ridge is considering stepping down after the November election, telling colleagues he is worn out from the massive reorganization of government and needs to earn money in the private sector to put his teenage children through college, officials said.


Ridge, 58, has explained to colleagues that he needs to earn money to comfortably put his two children, Tommy Jr. and Lesley, through college, officials said. Both are now teenagers. Ridge earns $175,700 a year as a Cabinet secretary.

Don't worry, Tom, that conflict will work itself out nicely.


This is beneath me, but...

Ann Coulter's new book is finally out, and here's the cover.

(Via the Mighty TBogg, who also links to this.)

Thursday, July 29, 2004

Can You Tell A Greenfield/From A Cold Steel Rail...

Answer: The rail has integrity.

On CNN, Jeff "Green Teeth" Greenfield was waving the RNC blastfax just minutes after Senator Kerry's speech concluded. Seems Kerry's video bio contained so many accomplishments the Senator didn't have time to mention that he was Mike Dukakis's Lt. Governor.

Let's see how many of these career highlights make the Bush video:

  • Failed to appear for flight physical
  • Failed to appear for duty, Alabama National Guard (or, alternatively, read magazines in lieu of actual military service)
  • Failed sobriety test
  • Failed businessman (Arbusto)
  • Failed candidate (U.S. Congress)
  • Member of failed G.H.W. Bush reelection committee
  • Failed governor (education, environment, etc.)
  • Failed to win popular vote
  • Failed to win necessary electoral college votes
  • Failed to prevent terrorist attacks on America
  • Failed to tell the truth about war with Iraq
  • "Mission Failed"
  • Failed to find WMDs
  • Failed economy
  • Osama who?
Needless to say, Greenfield didn't challenge the blastfax when he, Paunch and Judy interviewed Chinless Ed Gillespie.

The Next Great Chapter In America's Story

Hint: It doesn't involve hungry caterpillars.

It appears that Senator Kerry ad-libbed the "reporting for duty" line.

Can't wait for the equivalent in New York City.

On Tuesday a crazed audience member lunged at me while screaming at the top of her lungs. Sadly, it wasn't a fit of post-modern Beatlemania.

It was like the opening of that old TV show, "What's My Line?" -- Where everyone on the show claimed to be the same person and the goal was to find the real person among them.

Somehow it seemed that much more relevant when, cameras rolling, toward the end of the interview, I asked about complaints from women I know that Teresa Heinz Kerry shouldn't have presumed to take young Jack Edward's [sic] thumb out of his mouth during the two couples' debut together.

Leave blogging to the amateurs, you hacks.

Roosevelt On Faux News

Franklin Roosevelt said it best: "Repetition does not transform a lie into a truth."

That was the best speech I've heard General Clark give.

Turfbiter, Though More Appropriate, Was Already Taken By Dick Cheney

On the other side, the National Journal reports, President Bush is "Trailblazer," named for one of his favorite activities at his Texas ranch. His wife, Laura, is "Tempo," derivation also uncertain. Their twins Jenna and Barbara are "Twinkle" and "Turquoise."

Not to be confused with Neilsie's Taiwanese girlfriends, Twinkle and Turquoise.


Kevin Drum and his readers are skeptical of the story of the immigrant Boston cabbie who reinforces Mickey Kaus's pathological Kerry-hatred.

I want to know what cab driver would see Kaus and pick him up.

Wednesday, July 28, 2004

Republicans Attack Widow

From the New York Daily News:

A downcast senior GOP official confirmed Nancy Reagan had never committed to appearing at the convention, but was nevertheless dubious of the official explanation.

"The 'not feeling up to it' line is bull----," the official said. "Something happened in the last month, and whatever it was was real."
I think what happened was that an elderly widow didn't feel like being used as a prop by a bunch of frauds who never cared for her.
Is anyone truly surprised that Senator Edwards gave a stirring speech?  The man helped a lot of people -- and made a nice living himself -- by convincing people of the truth of what he says.  Something Dick Cheney will never be able to do.

So when you return home some night, you might pass a mother on her way to work the late-shift. You tell her: Hope is on the way.

When your brother calls - when your brother calls and says that he's spending his entire life at the office and he still can't get ahead, you tell him: Hope is on the way.

When your parents call and tell you their medicine's going through the roof, they can't keep up, you tell them: Hope is on the way.

And when your neighbor calls you and says her daughter's worked hard and she wants to go to college, you tell her: Hope is on the way.

And when your son or daughter who's serving this country heroically in Iraq calls, you tell them: Hope is on the way.

Edwards' optimism isn't a blind optimism. It's grounded in reality, and based on hope.

Like all of us, I've learned a lot of lessons in my life. Two of the most important are that first, there will always be heartache and struggle. We can't make it go away. But the second is that people of good and strong will can make a difference. One's a sad lesson; the other's inspiring. We are Americans and we choose to be inspired.

Lamest Roll Call Reference

Dennis Hopper.

But ... But ... A Frivolous Lawsuit Never Healed Anyone!

We need tort reform, now more than ever:

The number of hospital patients who die from preventable errors might be twice as high as previously estimated and shows no sign of decreasing, according to a new national review of Medicare records by a Denver-based health care ranking group.

The findings would make medical mistakes the third-leading cause of death in the country, behind heart disease and cancer.

Followed by George Bush's ego in a close fourth.

Tuesday, July 27, 2004

Illinois State Senator Barack Obama:

"....And fellow Americans -- Democrats; Republicans; Independents -- I say to you tonight: we have more work to do. ..."

Candy Crowley (to Obama, following speech):

"Who were you trying to reach with your speech tonight?"

Conventional Leftovers

Caught most of the convention via radio tonight.

I forgot how much I miss Howard Dean. 

And remembered why Kerry didn't pick Gephardt as his running mate.

Barack Obama's speech was very well written, and I appreciated his trashing of the inane Red State/Blue State metaphor.  In fact, it was great to hear him challenging the pundits and the conventional wisdom that falsely associates patriotism with the right wing.  It's easy to see why the Republicans can't come up with anyone to oppose him. 

That John Kerry version of Rollin' On The River ("... John Kerry keeps on tryin'/Kerry/Kerry") has got to go.

I'll catch some of the replay on C-SPAN.  Turned to CNN to see Laura Ingraham telling Aaron Brown about how the troops love Bush.

Media Matters has some good coverage of the convention coverage. Especially noteworthy are the reports on Howie Carr (on Faux), Bill Schneider, and Scaife.
Here's a transcript of Reverend Alston's speech from last night.

Unfortunately, I missed it, but will try to find the video online. I'm sure all the Faux viewers missed it too.

Howie Kurtz continues to play the fool.
This is the kind of thing that makes critics question whether Fox has a Republican agenda.


But virtually pulling the plug on live coverage of Gore and Carter? How about letting them speak and then ripping them, or critiquing them, or whatever. The network is supposed to be covering the convention, not just using it as a backdrop.

You are a media critic, putz. Why pretend Faux isn't the Republican Party Channel?

Elsewhere, the Putz writes:

I think it's fine to cite bloggers as long as people understand who they are and that they have a point of view.

Kurtz can comprehend that bloggers have a point of view but can't conceive that Faux is Republican?

And will Andrew Taylor admit he's been lied to by Faux? Yesterday, Taylor wrote:

How will Fox News, the embattled cable news network that attracts more viewers than CNN and MSNBC combined, but also draws more partisan criticism than any television news organization in history, cover the Democratic Convention?

Like a blanket, say Fox News officials, and just as significantly, they maintain, without fear or favor. No one will be able to accuse the network of giving short shrift to the party or its candidates, which many of its most conservative commentators enjoy skewering with impunity.

Mr. Taylor, you've been had.

O'Reilly interrupted his segment to toss to the Gore address for about 40 seconds, then started to rebut Gore. When Jimmy Carter took the podium, Fox joined it late and got out way early. Instead, viewers were treated to an interview with Republican activist Bill Bennett.

Buy This Blog

Screw the tipjar. You can own Roger Ailes.

Any offers guaranteeing editorial independence and a salary greater than Mickey Kaus's will be entertained.

Thanks For The Plug, Jon

What the other cable channels need, says Stewart, is a "Roger Ailes of truth," referring to the Fox News chairman who he says injects passion into the network (though Stewart sees it as conservative passion). Anchors and reporters should openly challenge politicians' spin-laden answers rather than being "sucked into the game."

Of course, Stewart isn't talking about this blog. And, contrary to Kurtz's wish, he isn't talking about conservatism, either. He's saying that Faux lies.

Meet Your Liberal Media: Learn to Read, Morons Edition

USA Today's plan to have Ann Coulter write a daily column from the Democratic convention was scrapped Monday after a dispute involving her first piece. Editorial page editor Brian Gallagher says her column had "basic weaknesses in clarity and readability that we found unacceptable." Coulter has been replaced by Jonah Goldberg, another conservative columnist. Gallagher tells E&P the paper wanted "a fresh approach to events that have largely become four-day commercials for political parties."

Have these morons never read Coulter? Have these morons never read Goldberg?

(Via Romenesko.)

Monday, July 26, 2004

Quote Of The Night

"You can't be a war president one day and claim to be a peace president the next, depending on the latest political polls."
Well, if that doesn't start the groundswell for repeal of the 22nd Amendment, nothing will.

The Era Of The Anonymous Blogger Is Over

As I've always said, if you want credibility, you have to use your real name.

Give 'em hell, Duncan.


Jesse Taylor of Pandagon meets Dave Grohl at the Democratic National Convention.

Tools at the Convention

NPR followed Jimmy Carter's rather tame speech with RNC flack Chinless Ed Gillespie expressing sorrow that a former President was "made" to act as an attack dog.

CNN had Jeff Greenfield pimping the Drudge Report.

Larry King had a panel talking about their prostate problems ... or something.

Grand Old Police Blotter: Rowland Down The River Edition

From the State House to the Federal Pen in 60 days. Connecticut's corrupt former Republican Governor, John Rowland is reportedly considering federal housing:

The Manchester Journal Inquirer reports the deal would require Governor Rowland to plead guilty to an unspecified criminal charge and spend several months in a federal prison.

One lawmaker on the select committee investigating the governor commented on the story, but does not want to be named.

They told Eyewitness News that sources close to the investigation say this is a "take it or leave it deal."

The sticking point in plea negotiations: Rowland is insisting he not share a cell with fellow Connecticut Philip Giordano.

The Expectations Game

The media whores have a tough job going into the Democratic convention. Expectations are high that the whores will use "Bush hatred," "angry Democrats," "sends the wrong message" or "fail to meet expectations" at least once every 5 minutes.

I'm confident that the whores will exceed expectations.

Bill Janklow: I'm Above The Law

Disgraced former Representative Kill Bill Janklow (R-S.D.) is seeking to avoid liability for punitive damages (and all personal liability) by claiming he was doing the work of the United States when he sped through a stop sign, killing Randy Scott. Which means that federal taxpayers pick up the tab for Janklow's deadly joyride.

This A.P. story gets it wrong:

If the case is moved back to state court in Minnesota, the Scott family could get punitive damages, which are not allowed in federal court. Meshbesher said Janklow's lawyers have 10 days to respond.

Actually, it's the Federal Tort Claims Act which precludes punitive damages. Punitive damages are awarded in federal court all the time.

Janklow didn't even get a slap on the wrist and, with respect to the civil law, he may get away with murder.

Air America Update

I've never heard why Air America didn't get its Northern California station on the air. Presumably, it was their cash flow problems. But if you're a broadcaster looking for a left audience (much of it with disposable income), NoCal is an ideal market. While this report is pretty vague, it sounds like the company may have found a Bay Area station:

The liberal talk network Air America, heard locally on WLIB (1190 AM), is adding Mike Malloy, 10 p.m.-1 a.m. weeknights, starting Aug. 2.

Air America President Jon Sinton also says the network is adding another "major California affiliate" early next month, and "chances are very good" it will find affiliates soon in Los Angeles and Chicago.

Sinton says he thinks the flurry of stories about instability at the fledgling network "are pretty much behind us now. ... We're focused on making this work, and it's happening."

Of course, it could be Stockton.

And don't forget KPFA.

Sunday, July 25, 2004

You Got Your Tort Reform In My Empowerment Zone

What happens when you combine the intellectual firepower of Dick Armey, Jack Kemp and C. Boyden Gray? More than just a successful lightbulb installation... you get FreedomWorks.

(No, I'm not going there.)

Yes, it's another free market think tank run by former government officials as a non-profit organization. Or rather, the merger of two former thunk tanks. Says former Representative Senator Jack Kemp, in a spontaneous, off-the-cuff remark, "By merging the policy expertise of Empower America with [Citizens for a Sound Economy's] grassroots machine, FreedomWorks provides the freedom movement with an organization that has unprecedented scale, reach, experience, and impact."

Says FreedomWorks President Matt Kibbe, "Our mission is no less ambitious than fundamentally changing the way our government operates. We're going to create what President Bush calls an 'ownership society' built on freedom and individual empowerment, and we are going to accomplish it through broad citizen action." Adds Matt, "I'm staking my B.A. in Economics from Grove City College on it!"

Update: Corrected, per "Fair and Balanced" Dave. (See comments.)

More Than A Feeling

Here's the lineup of musicians who will perform at the Democratic National Convention.

But where's Boston?

Everybody's waitin'
Gettin' crazy

Blogging About Convention Blogging

For those interested in live convention blogging, there are several sites, such as Feedster, tracking the convention blogs. (Another one has left Atrios off the list, and so will remain nameless, even though it appears to be more up to date.)

For reasons inexplicable, the official DNC Convention blog has a link to warflogger Jeff Jarvis. Jarvis is about as much a New Thinker as I am a new potato. And he's not at the convention, as far as I can tell. Given that most Democratic delegates don't share Jarvis's Barc-o-Lounger bloodlust, why promote him on the DNC site?

MSGOP's Hardball has a convention blog, which appears mostly to be aimed at shoe fetishists like Dick Morris.

MSGOP is also advertising its televised convention coverage on blogs, including Eschaton, which has been brutal -- brutally honest -- about media whores such as Tweezer Matthews and Howard the Duck Fineman. Now that is a triumph of the blogsphere, paying the blog that bites you.

(If the evil Roger or the Reverend Moon are reading this, I'm happy to let you buy space on this site. I'll even give Midget Mick a free "Situation Wanted" ad when the NYT buys Slate and clears out the deadwood. There's dignity in real work, Mick.)

TalkLeft and Pandagon are already in Boston.

Here endeth the update of things you've already read elsewhere.

Up And Running

The backbreaking (figuratively) work I was involved with is finally completed, so the blog should be a little less light on content for Convention Week.

Thanks to everyone who still bothers to check the site.

Saturday, July 24, 2004

WahhWahh O'Reilly

Out here on the tube
I bamboozle you rubes
I'm a steaming sack, but it's a living

I control the mike
And I say what I like
No other views will you be given

Just lie
Just vil-i-fy
It's only rightwing hateland

If honest guests are banned
I'll fool the whole heartland
I'll sue you for libel
If you expose my smearing

The risk of truth is clear
The end of my career
So buy all my books
Before they get remaindered

Rightwing hateland
Rupert's rightwing hateland
Rightwing hateland
Right wing hateland

You're all hated!

The Democratic Convention Schedule

Monday, July 26
The Kerry-Edwards Plan for America's Future

David Alston, Vietnam Swift Boat Crewmate of John Kerry
Tammy Baldwin, U.S. Representative from Wisconsin
Jimmy Carter, Former President of the United States
Bill Clinton, Former President of the United States
Hillary Clinton, U.S. Senator from New York
Al Gore, Former Vice-President of the United States
Steny Hoyer, U.S. Representative from Maryland, Democratic Whip
Terry McAuliffe, Chairman of the Democratic Party
Kendrick Meek, U.S. Representative from Florida
Robert Menendez, U.S. Representative from New Jersey
Thomas Menino, Mayor of Boston
Barbara Mikulski, U.S. Senator from Maryland
(joined by all Women Senators)
Stephanie Tubbs Jones, U.S. Representative from Ohio
Jim Turner, U.S. Representative from Texas

Tuesday, July 27
A Lifetime of Strength & Service

Tom Daschle, U.S. Senator from South Dakota, Democratic Leader
Howard Dean, Former Governor of Vermont, 2004 Presidential Candidate
Richard Durbin, U.S. Senator from Illinois
James Forbes, Senior Minister at Riverside Church, New York City
Richard Gephardt, U.S. Representative from Missouri, 2004 Presidential Candidate
Chris Heinz, Stepson of John Kerry
Teresa Heinz Kerry, Wife of John Kerry
Mike Honda, U.S. Representative from California
Ted Kennedy, U.S. Senator from Massachusetts
Jim Langevin, U.S. Representative from Rhode Island
Carol Moseley-Braun, Former U.S. Senator from Illinois, 2004 Presidential Candidate
Janet Napolitano, Governor of Arizona
Barack Obama, State Senator from Illinois, U.S. Senate Candidate
Ron Reagan, Son of former President Ronald Reagan
Christie Vilsack, First Lady of Iowa
Ilana Wexler, 13-Year-Old Founder of Kids for Kerry

Wednesday, July 28
A Stronger More Secure America

Steve Brozak, Ret. Lt. Col., USMC, Candidate for U.S. Representative from New Jersey
Elijah Cummings, U.S. Representative from Maryland
Cate Edwards, Daughter of John Edwards
Elizabeth Edwards, Wife of John Edwards
John Edwards, Democratic Vice-Presidential Nominee
Bob Graham, U.S. Senator from Florida, 2004 Presidential
Jennifer Granholm, Governor of Michigan
Dennis Kucinich, U.S. Representative from Ohio, 2004 Presidential Candidate
Greg Meeks, U.S. Representative from New York
Martin O'Malley, Mayor of Baltimore, Maryland
Harry Reid, U.S. Senator from Nevada
Ed Rendell, Governor of Pennsylvania
Bill Richardson, Governor of New Mexico
Al Sharpton, 2004 Presidential Candidate

Thursday, July 29
Stronger at Home, Respected in the World

Madeline Albright, Former Secretary of State
Joe Biden, U.S. Senator from Delaware
Wesley Clark, Four Star General, 2004 Presidential Candidate
Max Cleland, Former U.S. Senator from Georgia
James Clyburn, U.S. Representative from South Carolina
Alexandra Kerry, Daughter of John Kerry
John Kerry, 2004 Democratic Presidential Nominee
Vanessa Kerry, Daughter of John Kerry
Joe Lieberman, U.S. Senator from Connecticut, 2004 Presidential Candidate
Ed Markey, U.S. Representative from Massachusetts
Juanita Millender-McDonald, U.S. Representative from California
Eleanor Holmes Norton, U.S. Representative from the District of Columbia
Nancy Pelosi, U.S. Representative from California, Democratic Leader
Jim Rassman, Green Beret rescued by John Kerry in Vietnam
Louise Slaughter, U.S. Representative from New York
(joined by Congressional Women)
John Sweeney, President of AFL-CIO
Mark Warner, Governor of Virginia

Friday, July 23, 2004

Please Don't Come To Boston

I now regret not apply for DNC blogger credentials, if only because it might have kept Republican hack Mickey Kaus from gaining access to the proceedings. (Not a likely possibility, but still worth a try.)

The big question: Is Kaus bunking in Jeff Jacoby's spare trundle bed, or is he sharing a suite with fellow Faux Democrat Susan Estrich?

O'Reilly Outed As Lying Fraud

Wait, he's been out for years.

On his show Monday night, [Bill] O'Reilly chastised guest Michael Rogers for maintaining a Web site publicizing the names of gay staffers working for politicians who oppose gay marriage.

"We're uneasy with this kind of exposition," O'Reilly said. "Somebody's personal sex life should have nothing to do with any kind of a policy."

But on the same show--and for at least the third time in the last year--O'Reilly described one of the justices on the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court as a lesbian, a claim that the justice herself, through a spokeswoman, denies.

On shows in November, last week, and again on Monday, O'Reilly has referred to "the lesbian judge on the Supreme Court who dissented" in the court's landmark ruling in favor of gay marriage.


A Fox spokesman said O'Reilly stands by his claim, which is based on "more than one independent source."

The spokesman declined to identify those sources, citing confidentiality.

Roger Ailes has confirmed O'Reilly's sources are Outta Myass and Ole Cloth, the bases for most of O'Reilly's information.

Or does "independent source" mean closeted Faux anchor?

Thursday, July 22, 2004


Stay tuned to Roger Ailes for after I get home and take a shower-to-gavel coverage of the Democratic National Convention, Monday, July 26 to Thursday, July 29.

Here's Seeing the Forest on the Sandy Berger story.

On the Leanin' Lou Dobbs program tonight, Slade Gorton said the Justice Department assured the 9/11 Commission had all the documents - meaning that no documents were missing or destroyed.

That, of course, will only double the wingnut lies.

Update (7/23): It was Gorton who said "we have every one of those documents," and Jamie Gorelick who said the Justice Department confirmed it. (See below.) Josh Marshall was watching the same program, and he caught respected public broadcaster Tucker Faye Carlson in a gigantic lie.

GORTON: Well, we can't shed any light on exactly what happened there and on Sandy Berger's troubles with the Justice Department and the Archives. What we can say unequivocally is we had all of that information. We have every one of those documents. All of them have -- are infused in and are a part of our report.

DOBBS: So the commission was denied no information as a result of whatever Sandy Berger did or did not do at the National Archives?

GORTON: That's precisely correct.

GORELICK: And we have been so assured by the Justice Department.

DOBBS: Jamie Gorelick, Slade Gorton, we thank you both. And again, our congratulations, and thanks for your service to the country.

Wednesday, July 21, 2004

Hi Ho Hi Ho

I apologize for the light posting this week... Reality is intruding on my media empire. If only I could get Bill Gates to subsidize me at the rate of five original sentences every three days.

I should be back up to speed by the weekend.

By the way, isn't it nice to see the interview of a vice presidential candidate who doesn't need his wife to run interference for him?

God-fearing man of God Rick Santorum takes a big old piss on the Ninth Commandment:

"Right after the documents were taken, John Kerry held a photo op and attacked the president on port security," said Rick Santorum, a Republican senator from Pennsylvania. "The documents that were taken may have been utilized for that press conference."

(Reuters, via Talking Points Memo.)

Brent Bozell's Media Smackdown!

Ginger git Brent Bozell doesn't like OutFoxed, apparently because the film doesn't contain any lesbian scenes. But his criticism goes deeper than that:

It doesn't help matters that Robert Greenwald, the creator of "Outfoxed," is a very sloppy amateur at the science of media analysis.

That sloppiness is why Greenwald paid Vince McMahon and the WWE a cool million and offered a grovelling apology. Oh, wait.

A classic example of the film's inanity is an incredibly silly attack on Bill O'Reilly because he said he almost never said "shut up" to guests. Greenwald goes about disproving this trite little point, but after finding an example or two, he ruins it all by gratuitously adding clips where O'Reilly used the words "shut up" in commentaries, or in questions where he wasn't telling a guest to shut up, but asking the guest if someone else should shut up. Now he's not making a point. He's un-making it.

And do we really need to point out that O'Reilly isn't a reporter, and therefore has nothing to do with the news product of Fox?

You see, O'Reilly almost never tells his guests to shut up, and he isn't really a reporter, and his program isn't a news program, so how can you criticize Fox for being a bad news channel?

The liberal media elite's double standard in journalism extends to this shoddy film, which they've promoted as another noteworthy brick in the wall of anti-Bush anger.

Hey! Brent! Leave those metaphors alone!

If conservatives ever tried to make a documentary about the liberal media this amateurish, it would either never be mentioned, or it would be pounded until it was flat as a pancake, and deservedly so.

It's nice to hear Brent doesn't want to direct, if only because he can't afford to pay the damages.

Tuesday, July 20, 2004


Has anyone as repulsively pompous as Joe Wilson emerged from the D.C. undergrowth in recent years?


Monday, July 19, 2004

How The Other Half Lives

If this doesn't make you glad you're not a Republican, nothing will:

A life-size Bill Clinton doll in an "Addams Family" electric chair greeted guests Tuesday at the entrance of Luntz's Fairfax County home.

But... but ... someone compared Bush to Hitler, so it's okay. By the way, that's Republican hack Frank Luntz or, as he's known on MSGOP, "a pollster."

I hope Frank used some bleach on those before the guests arrived.

As the 200 guests -- including Reps. John Sweeney, Jack Kingston and Clay Shaw and former congressmen Bob Livingston and Bill Archer -- wandered through the house and patio, Grover Norquist battled against Rep. Tom Feeney at an old "Missile Command" video game. "Well, there goes Reagan's missile defense," Feeney sighed after an especially lousy shot.

But I thought Bob Livingston returned to Louisiana, in disgrace, to repair his broken marriage. Guess not.

It's okay for Bob, though, since it doesn't sound like Luntz invited any girls to his treehouse bachelor pad.

(Link via Wonkette.)

Cheney to Scully: Fuck You

That's Lynne Cheney.

Interviewing Dick and Lynne Cheney at the vice president's mansion, C-Span's Steve Scully asked, 'What is it going to take for reporters to stop asking the question whether you are going to be on the ticket?' Cheney muttered, through barely open lips, 'In the run-up to the convention, people don't have much to talk about, so you get speculation on that.' He laconically added, 'When we get to the convention, I think that'll put an end to it.'

"A suitably low-key, dismissive answer. But after the camera was turned off, Lynne Cheney, who had been forcefully interjecting herself throughout the interview, lit into Scully. She chastised the interviewer for questioning her husband's place on the ticket, according to a source who has spoken to the Cheneys. The outburst seemed uncalled for; Scully is about the most mild-mannered, nonconfrontational talk-show host in Washington. Asked about the incident by NEWSWEEK, Mary Matalin, the former White House aide who acts as an informal media and political adviser and part-time spinner for the Cheneys, explained that Mrs. Cheney was irked because the interview had been pitched by C-Span as an 'at-home-with-the-Cheneys thing,' not as a hard-news interview.

Hey, Steve, I hear Tim Russert can give you tips on kneeling.

C-SPAN describes the interview as follows: "The Vice President answered questions on national security, terrorism, the campaign, his upcoming debate with Sen. Edwards, and speculation about his place on the Republican ticket with Pres. Bush." Doesn't sound too "at-home" to me. Maybe C-SPAN should have asked Dirty Dick about gay families, his love of profanity and his doctor's addiction to painkillers. That's much more homey.

"Cheney enjoys getting away from Washington...." Not as much as I will enjoy it.

Young American's Foundation: Don't Fuck With Our Messiah

The Young America's Foundation has a Journalism Center, the purposes of which are fundraising and sucking up to wealthy, bigoted felons:

Ken Grubbs was director of the conservative National Journalism Center until he wrote a piece criticizing Washington Times founder the Rev. Sun Myung Moon. Now he's out of a job.


Ron Robinson, president of Young America's Foundation, which oversees the journalism center, says he dismissed Grubbs because "I don't view the role of director as criticizing the media, writing commentaries attacking the media. I didn't expect Ken to do it." Such pieces make it harder for the center to place interns, Robinson says, and was the "final straw" because under Grubbs fundraising and internships have lagged.

Grubbs says that his writing "only builds our integrity" and that Robinson's request that he clear any freelance pieces amounted to "prior restraint. . . . He said, 'The Washington Times has been very good to us, has covered our events, and you've impugned their integrity.' I don't think he understands journalism, and there was a culture clash."

Here's the Moon ass-kisser, bragging about a puff profile in the Moonie rag, Insight. Robinson gives new meaning to the word "young." One can certainly picture him detailing Moon's crown collection with a toothbrush.

Interestingly, the National Journalism Center's "Who We Are" webpage boasts placing interns with Details, Stuff and Larry King Live, but not the Moonie Times. The Center also demonstrates its "Devot[ion] to accuracy" by hosting such guest speakers as "Brian Lamb of CNN" and Bob Novak.

Sunday, July 18, 2004

Bad Will Industries

George Fwill says, "The government should get out of the way of charity."

His example: the St. Vincent de Paul Village in San Diego, a "life-changing dispenser of compassionate conservatism," which apparently houses about 855 homeless people.

At the Village, the homeless children recieve a public school education on site, and the Village charges the State of California rent for the classrooms. The University of California San Diego provides 12 psychiatrists for the residents. And, "[o]f the village's $25 million budget, a quarter comes from various governments."

So, of course, Will argues that the government should get out of the way, and take their lousy teachers, psychiatrists and $5.25 million with them. Meddlesome bastards.

Oh, wait, that's not his argument.

Another quarter of the Village's income comes from selling donated cars. People donate them because they can, currently, claim up to a $5,000 deduction on their federal income tax, even if their car is a pile of junk worth $50. Some people might call that a subsidy, one that doesn't benefit the charities, but rather the taxpayers claiming the bogus deduction. And the subsidy is one that goes to the tax cheats from folks who don't claim the b.s. deductions.

Fwill frets that if the government doesn't subsidize these self-dealing samaritans, and they have to declare the actual value of their heap, they might not donate. In other words, if the government "hinders" charity by denying benefactors a tax break, private charity will dry up. Note that nobody is forced to claim a deduction to give anything to charity. People could -- and I know it's a radical concept -- donate out of the goodness of their hearts, without expecting anything in return.

It sounds like the people of St. Vincent de Paul do good work (at least when they're not whining to Will). And maybe Will's correct that there's an easier way to prevent scumbags from making bogus valuations for tax purposes. But for Will to argue that government is the problem in this deal ("in the way") is just bullshit.

Saturday, July 17, 2004

Meaty, Beefy, Big and Pukey

The Illinois Republican Party is running out of freaks:

WASHINGTON -- A potential Republican candidate for the Senate seat from Illinois -- where the party's nominee withdrew over sex club allegations -- engaged in "lewd and abusive behavior" while she served as a top official in the White House drug policy office, an internal inquiry found last year.


The lewd and abusive behavior finding stemmed from a Dec. 19, 2002, staff gathering. Barthwell made comments about a staff member's sexual orientation after the staff member misspoke in an earlier conversation, the memorandum said.

"Dr. Barthwell made reference to this staff member sitting on men's laps. A kaleidoscope pointed upward was placed on a chair by Dr. Barthwell as the staff member was about to sit down," it said.

"Dr. Barthwell suggested that the staff member would want to cut the cake available for the gathering because the knife was 'long and hard' and he might 'enjoy handling it.' When the cake was cut, Dr. Barthwell referred to the pieces as 'most' [????] or 'beefy' and she said to the staff member, 'I know you like it big and meaty.'

The Platform

For those eagerly anticipating Roger Ailes' 2.4/4 (more or less, depending on what other obligations I have) stay-at-home coverage of the Democratic National Convention, here's the 2004 Platform. (.pdf file.)

Don't worry, there won't be a test.

For the Republican convention, I'll come up with a drinking game or something.

How To Write Like A Moonie

"Neither Mr. Wilson nor the publisher of his book 'The Politics of Truth: Inside the Lies that Led to War and Betrayed My Wife's CIA Identity,' did not respond to requests for comment yesterday."

It may be a right-wing rag, but you should still take a little pride in your work, Mr. Lakely.

Attack of the Cohen

Richard Cohen starts out his latest column like this:

I have a friend who is always alert to the expropriation of the dead for selfish reasons. Specifically, she has special scorn for people who excuse themselves from attending a funeral by saying that the deceased would have understood.

He then goes on to bash Ron Reagan Not-Jnr. for agreeing to speak at the Democratic convention, and calls Ron a "grave robber."

The column doesn't make a whole lot of sense, but you probably guessed that from the byline.

As far as I can tell, Cohen thinks Ron Not-Jnr. is a selfish grave robber because he is a nobody, and he's just appearing at the convention to bash Bush. Selfish? Does Ron own lots of biotech stocks? Will stem-cell research reanimate Ronnie? The actual facts that (1) Ron's not going to bash Bush in his speech and (2) he will be promoting an idea that will benefit others (and most likely not himself personally) seem not to have registered with Cohen.

Cohen charges Ron with "expropriat[ing] his father's fame and stature for his own purposes," which, Cohen believes, is particularly inappropriate since the Gipper's views on stem-cell research are not known. But Ron is not purporting to speak for his father. He's speaking as someone who saw what a disease did to his father. Would Cohen give his blessing only to advocacy by victims of disease who are already famous, or by already-famous family members of victims? The suffering riff-raff need not apply.

Would Ron Reagan be speaking in Boston if his father wasn't a former President? Most likely not. But so what? In 1992, Elizabeth Glaser was the unknown wife of a formerly famous television actor when she spoke to the Democratic Convention about AIDS. She too could be accused of expropriating her husband's fame and stature, and deemed unqualified to speak on an issue of national importance. In the case of Alzheimer's, it's not possible to have a victim of the disease speak on her or his own behalf. Would Cohen have the Democrats ignore the issue altogether rather than present a speech from an intelligent and articulate advocate, simply because his father, St. Ronnie, was Republican?

Cohen also believes that "a person with Alzheimer's may not be aware of his condition," and thus wonders if Alzheimer's victims actually "suffer." Which illustrates why Cohen should not be allowed to criticize anyone else, ever, on his or her lack of knowledge or expertise.

I'm also not sure Cohen understands what expropriation means.

(Thanks to jdancingkid for the link.)

War Pigs

Neocons who plot destruction/Outsourcing death's construction...

The New York Times attends OzzFest:

In his own band, Mr. Osbourne sings gallows-humor party anthems; in Black Sabbath, he sings of real dread, backed with the fat certainty of Tony Iommi's guitar sound and a slow groove. For 60 minutes at the end of the night, Sabbath played a few of its ultra-refined riff songs from 1969 to 1972, with solos in the exact same places, played more or less the same ways.

"War Pigs," the opener, was the best song of the set and the entire day. To double the force of the music, the giant screens next to the stage showed pictures of President Bush juxtaposed with pictures of Hitler.

And it's all brought to you by Clear Channel. (.pdf file)

Shouldn't a bunch of redneck disk jockeys be quitting their jobs in protest right about now?

Shouldn't a bunch of Republicans be giving some money back?

And Now, Meet My New Ambassador to Thailand, Neilsie, Come On Up Here....

The Moonie Times reports:

President Bush yesterday castigated Fidel Castro's regime for contributing to the worldwide problem of human trafficking by becoming a destination for "sex tourism" and vowed to work toward "the rapid, peaceful transition to democracy in Cuba."

"Human life is the gift of our creator, and it should never be for sale," Mr. Bush told participants at the first national training conference on "Human Trafficking in the United States" in Tampa, Fla.

The creator says you can lob missles at it indiscriminately, however.

The president, citing a Johns Hopkins University study, said the easing of travel restrictions to the island in the 1990s created "an influx of American and Canadian tourists," who "contributed to a sharp increase in child prostitution in Cuba."

Damn that madman Castro for contributing to Human Trafficking In The United States. That's something Americans would never do!

Except in the United States.

Or in Cuba.

You'd almost think Bush's concern for human trafficking was politically motivated.

"We have put a strategy in place to hasten the day when no Cuban child is exploited to finance a failed revolution and every Cuban citizen will live in freedom," said Mr. Bush, who won Florida, and the presidency in 2000, by just 547 votes.


Meet Your Liberal Media: The Lie That Dare Not Speak The Name Judith Miller Edition

The New York Times regrets misleading the country in support of George Bush's little war.  This editorial isn't the first mea culpa, and shouldn't be the last. But it still refuses to name the names of those responsible within its ranks.  Selected strands from the Times' hairshirt follow:

As we've noted in several editorials since the fall of Baghdad, we were wrong about the weapons. And we should have been more aggressive in helping our readers understand that there was always a possibility that no large stockpiles existed.


At the time, we believed that Saddam Hussein was hiding large quantities of chemical and biological weapons because we assumed that he would have behaved differently if he wasn't.


But we do fault ourselves for failing to deconstruct the W.M.D. issue with the kind of thoroughness we directed at the question of a link between Iraq and Al Qaeda, or even tax cuts in time of war. We did not listen carefully to the people who disagreed with us. Our certainty flowed from the fact that such an overwhelming majority of government officials, past and present, top intelligence officials and other experts were sure that the weapons were there. We had a groupthink of our own.


If we had known that there were probably no unconventional weapons, we would have argued earlier and harder that invading Iraq made no sense.


Congress would never have given President Bush a blank check for military action if it had known that there was no real evidence that Iraq was likely to provide aid to terrorists or was capable of inflicting grave damage on our country or our allies. Many politicians who voted to authorize the war still refuse to admit that they made a mistake. But they did. And even though this page came down against the invasion, we regret now that we didn't do more to challenge the president's assumptions.

Challenge them?  Shit, you reported them -- as fact. You weren't misled -- you led the misleading.

If the Times wants its credibility back, it will have to earn it. By actions, not words.

Nobody Reads Roger

Let this be a warning to you. If you don't read Roger, you might find your blog writing checks your ass can't cash at the Check'N'Go. Sully Joe picks up on the growing scandal of how the big bad media hates Georgie:

JOURNALISTS FOR KERRY: Michael Petrelis has done some digging and found which hacks have given to which candidates. Big surprise: "President George Bush didn't receive a single donation from any outlet or reporter in my search." The New Yorker is, in particular, up to its eyeballs in reporter contributions to lefties and Dems.

Well, yes, it is a big surprise.

Sullivan seems particularly distressed by the revelation that the New Yorker is "up to its eyeballs in reporter contributions to lefties and Dems," by which he means that editor/contributors Hendrik Hertzberg and Roger Angell, film critic David Denby and an attorney for the magazine gave money to John Kerry. I hear the talking dogs in the cartoons are members of PETA, too.

Update: Petrelis Files has posted a correction. Will the hairless hack twins follow suit?

Who Do You Trustee?

The slimy old lizard in charge of National Review passed over the long-suffering Kitty-Jo Lopez and Jo-Jo the Dogface's Boy to name this twit as a trustee of the magazine. Maybe Bill was hyp-mo-tized by the shiny monkey suit. It's a particularly galling -- but deserved -- slap at the differently-abled benchwarmers in the Corner. Perhaps Bill can let the Cornerites babysit his illegitimate grandson as a consolation prize.

Letter From A Westport, CT Jail

"There are many, many good people who have gone to prison. Look at Nelson Mandela."

Friday, July 16, 2004

Attack Poodles, coming August 2004 Posted by Hello
I've now got a limited capacity to post images, but haven't yet figured out what to do with it. If you've got any ideas that don't end with me being sued for theft of intellectual property, let me know.

(This one's cool. I'm like this with Harve.)

Kaus Bias B.S.

Midget Mickey Kaus posts an expose of those nasty lib'rul journalists throwing money at the Democrats.

Kaus says: "the Petrelis Files has an interesting list of journalists who've contributed to political candidates. ..."

Toward the end, Kaus sprouts mini-wood as he claims: "Rupert Murdoch maxed out ... for Kerry. That must be how he got that big Gephardt scoop!... " And he quotes Petrelis as saying: "President George Bush didn't receive a single donation from any outlet or reporter in my search."

Scandalous! Damn that liberal media!

At the Petrelis Files, the author describes the "search results of my informal survey" with respect to Murdoch as follows:




But if you search "Murdoch" at the site Petrelis uses, the following results also turn up:

MURDOCH, K. R MR.12/30/2003 $5,000.00New York, NY 10036News Corporation/Chairman & C.e.o. -[Contribution]NATIONAL REPUBLICAN CONGRESSIONAL COMMITTEE

Murdoch, K. Rupert12/4/2003 $5,000.00New York, NY 10036News Corporation/Chairman & CEO -[Contribution]NEWS AMERICA HOLDINGS INC-FOX POL ACTION COMMITTEE (AKA NEWS AMERICA-FOX POL ACTION CMTE


Murdoch, Keith Rupert Mr.6/27/2003 $2,000.00New York, NY 10036News Corporation/Chairman & C.E.O. -[Contribution]BUSH-CHENEY '04 INC

Murdoch, Lachlan Mr.6/27/2003 $2,000.00New York, NY 10036News Corporation/Executive -[Contribution]




MURDOCH, RUPERT3/18/2003 $2,000.00NEW YORK, NY 10036NEWS CORP -[Contribution]MCCAIN FOR SENATE '04

Murdoch, Rupert Mr.4/21/2004 $25,000.00New York, NY 10036Fox Entertainment Group Inc./Chairm -[Contribution]REPUBLICAN NATIONAL COMMITTEE




Murdoch, Wendi Mrs.6/27/2003 $2,000.00New York, NY 10036Homemaker -[Contribution]BUSH-CHENEY '04 INC

Oh, I'm so confused. What can it mean?

Seems ol' K-Rupe isn't quite the flaming liberal Kaus thinks he is.

And if you search 2000, you'll see Rupe spending his Presidential dollars on McCain and Whorin' Hatch, and more dollars on Lazio, Robb, Santorum, Snowe and the RNC (as well as Kennedy and Bill Bradley).

Not quite the big bedwetting scoop that Kaus hoped for.


Wednesday, July 14, 2004

The perfect drink for members of the Illinois Republican Party, flavorless alcohol plus the detritus found at the bottom of the salad bar after the crushed ice melts.

The Bloody Mike

Served only to the first string with vodka and a
full roster of goodies: pickles, onion, shrimp,
olives with three stuffings,pepper, cherry tomato
and a beer chaser ..................$9.00

Update: Timing is everything.

My Family

Late last evening, standing in front of a display card extolling the societal benefits of marriage, Rick Santorum told the Senate he was supporting a constitutional amendment prohibiting gay marriage "for my family."

Anyone who knows me, Santorum said, "knows that nothing is more important to me than my family."

That's super, Rick. When does my family get its own Senate seat?

Let me tell you about another family, Rick. The parents have been married over forty years. They're Republicans. They taught their children to respect others, and the kids turned out okay. They've lived through 40 years of Republican fornicators, adulterers, serial monogamists, porn aficionados, johns, exhibitionists, sex club patrons, spousal abusers and pedophiles, and it hasn't hurt their family one bit.

If you think gay marriage will hurt your family, Ricky, maybe it's because you're just not a very good father.

Meet Your Liberal Media: King of Crap Edition

Larry King asked for an interview with Michael Moore, but then never followed through. This article "asks" whether King was pressured by the Bush administration to keep Moore off, but doesn't quote anyone, even Moore, who suggests that is the case. But that's not the point here.

The article illustrates what CNN considers news these days:

Recent hour-long guests on "Larry King Live" have included Gene Hackman, the parents of serial killer Jeffrey Dahmer and psychic Char Margolis.

Yes, Larry King is the biggest freak show on cable "news." Last week he interviewed some former Playboy model who lost custody of her kids, conceieved during an affair with a married man, to their biological father. That's important. Last night, an actress who was stabbed a stalker (in the 1980s, I believe). And then there's the biggest freak in the sideshow, Nancy Grace.

No wonder The Daily Show is the main source of television news for many. It actually mentions the news.

Community College Yokel Offended By Convention Snub

That bloggers get front seats bothers Tom McPhail, a journalism professor at the University of Missouri.

"They're certainly not committed to being objective. They thrive on rumor and innuendo," McPhail says. Bloggers "should be put in a different category, like 'pretend' journalists."

Those who can't do, whine.

McPhail's a little light on the credentials, actual reporting-wise, and it looks like he last published anything worth mentioning in 1987. But he does have a second job with the phone company.

(Via USA TOADY. The article also mentions TalkLeft.)

Tuesday, July 13, 2004

This Just In

Bush Administration Drafts Plan To Delay Presidential Election If Scott Peterson Is Acquitted

"There's got to be others," one senior Administration official told Susan Schmidt, "C'mon, do you have any ideas?"

Monday, July 12, 2004

Howie Kurtz, Faux Waterboy

From ROBERT BOYNTON: The Washington Post sidebar article about my giving Fox only twenty-four hours is misleadingly titled. I gave Fox 72 hours to respond and have the emails to back that up. I forwarded them all to Kurtz, who acknowledged that I was correct, but only glancingly refers to them in the piece. I gave Fox every opportunity to respond and honestly wanted to know their policy about the "fair use" of their footage in a documentary which was critical of them. Their decision not to get back to me was a result of either bureaucratic incompetence or pr calculation.

Did Howie change the hed? Maybe he can explain in his little chit-chat today.

(Via Romenesko Letters)

Sunday, July 11, 2004

Jim Capozzola at The Rittenhouse Review has a very funny post about some of the Google searches that lead to his blog.

The best one I got recently was Ronald + Reagan's + obituary + herpes.

Can't vouch for Ronnie, but I'm clean.

You Can Take Zell Miller And Shove Him Up ....

A fitting tribute to Ronald Reagan.

Nice. Very nice.

(Link via Pandagon.)

The Marriage of Bigotry and Electoral Politics

From Bush's Saturday radio address:

A great deal is at stake in this matter. The union of a man and woman in marriage is the most enduring and important human institution, and the law can teach respect or disrespect for that institution. If our laws teach that marriage is the sacred commitment of a man and a woman, the basis of an orderly society, and the defining promise of a life, that strengthens the institution of marriage. If courts create their own arbitrary definition of marriage as a mere legal contract, and cut marriage off from its cultural, religious and natural roots, then the meaning of marriage is lost, and the institution is weakened. The Massachusetts court, for example, has called marriage "an evolving paradigm." That sends a message to the next generation that marriage has no enduring meaning, and that ages of moral teaching and human experience have nothing to teach us about this institution.
Paradigm? Isn't that Neilsie Bush's opening bid during his Asian sex tours?
Meanwhile, while is USA TOADY whoring for Faux? In an article on Outfoxed, Toady Mark Memmott writes:

However, Outfoxed does not mention other memos its researchers obtained from Fox News staffers.

Those memos, shown to USA TODAY, remind correspondents to give equal emphasis to speeches by President Bush and his opponent, Sen. John Kerry.

Another memo says, "Let's not overdo the appearances by Kerry swift boat mate John O'Neill," a man who raised questions about the senator's wartime record. "He represents one side of the 30-year recollections of what Kerry did, or didn't do, in uniform. Other people have different recollections," the memo says.
Uh, shouldn't Toady Memmott be pointing out that O'Neill wasn't a boat mate of Kerry's and therefore has NO FUCKING PERSONAL KNOWLEDGE OF WHAT KERRY DID, OR DIDN'T DO, IN UNIFORM? Shouldn't Memmott point out this memo is completely inaccurate, as is Faux's reporting?

Shouldn't he actually address the question of how much airtime O'Neill actually got, versus all of the servicemen who actually served with Kerry? You know, that thing ... whatsit? ... reporting?

Just asking.

Collateral Damage

From the New York Times Magazine:

The most stinging blow that "Outfoxed" delivers to Fox's "fair and balanced" claim comes in a segment of the film on the daily memos apparently sent to the entire Fox news operation by John Moody, Fox News's senior vice president for news and editorial. The memos, which Greenwald says were provided by two unnamed employees at the network, set the agenda for how events will be covered. One memo, thought to have been circulated at Fox in April, instructs employees how to report on the increasing number of American fatalities in Iraq: "Do not fall into the easy trap of mourning the loss of U.S. lives," it reads.

Here's the website.

Answering A Hypothetical

In comments, Talk Left asked what I would have focused on had I applied for blogging credentials for the Democratic Convention in Boston, and gotten them.

Since this blog focuses on the media, most likely I would have focused on press coverage of the convention vs. the reality of the convention. That would have been primarily newspaper coverage, since it would be almost impossible to observe the cable coverage and the convention itself simultaneously. (I suppose it also depends on how close to the action the credentials would get me.)

I'd keep a beady eye out for the usual suspects in the media, hoping to spot them in embarassing situations (like on the cell phone with the no-chin twins, Gillespie and Mehlman; or demanding royal treatment from the Party).

And I probably would have asked in advance whether any readers were attending the convention, so I could interview them if they were interested. (Anyone who is attending and would like to share their experiences for publication, feel free to e-mail me.)

And just giving everyone a sense of what the scene was like. (For my own sake, too, since I've never been to a political event of that magnitude.)

Oh, and looking for stuff I could sell on eBay.

That's pretty close to what I'll be doing from home, flipping back and forth between C-SPAN and the cable news coverage, and blogging what I see.

And rummaging around my closets for stuff to sell on eBay.

A glance at News paper terms

News paper - A form of advertising on paper, often accompanied by brief items on current events used to fill space between advertisements.

As a verb, news paper means to line the bottom of a birdcage or other waste receptacle with advertising on paper.

News paper journalist - A person who fabricates events, quotes and often people. See Jack Kelley.

Pressosphere - The incestuous community of corporate enterprises which sell advertising on paper, and which pander to advertisers in an effort to increase revenue.

Neuharth - Someone who no longer has his own news paper and doesn't have anything to say, but says it anyway.

Squitieri - Form of news paper journalism focusing on disinformation and right-wing propaganda.

McPaper - A form of advertising on paper which is especially greasy, tasteless and fact-free.

Giveaway - Advertising on paper so worthless it has to be forced upon hotel patrons while they sleep.


Saturday, July 10, 2004

Same Old Schmidt

Josh Marshall on Steno Sue:

Finally, down toward the end of Schmidt's article she writes that: "According to the former Niger mining minister, Wilson told his CIA contacts, Iraq tried to buy 400 tons of uranium in 1998."

I read the report's discussion of the whole Niger business. And I didn't see that reference. However, on page 44 there is a reference to Wilson reporting to the CIA that "an Iranian delegation was interested in purchasing 400 tons of yellowcake from Niger in 1998 [but that] no contract was ever signed with Iran." (emphasis added).

Perhaps I missed the reference that Schmidt is noting. But it seems awfully similar to the one the report notes about Iran -- same date, same tonnage. Presumably in this case, Schmidt innocently confused the two neighboring and similar-sounding countries, though it's a goof you'd think an editor would have caught.

The Circle Of Jerks

"I know that if I go more than about five or six hours without posting, or telling people that I'm not going to be blogging for the rest of the day," said Reynolds, readers e-mail him and say, "You haven't posted anything in five or six hours. Are you OK?"



(Link via Pandagon)

Friday, July 09, 2004

Kink Aid

I'm going to have to try out one of these sex clubs that are all the rage among conversative columnists.

Only the thought of seeing L. Brent Bozell's bare freckled ass is keeping me away.

Check out PlayByTheRules.Org, an OxFam America site calling attention to the sweatshop conditions of certain companies manufacturing official Olympic sportswear.

I'm not so sure encouraging the IOC to live up to principles is a particularly promising endeavor, but it's worth a try. And -- Bonus! -- Nick Kristof will hate you for it.

The Empty Tent

Q. Name the two places you won't find any member of the Bush Administration -- from any level.


Mayor Bloomberg's party for the Log Cabin Republicans, the gay Republican organization, will be held in Bryant Park on Sunday, Aug. 29, the day before the convention begins.

"The mayor's inclusive message regarding gay and lesbian Americans is perceived outside of New York as being a national role model," said Patrick C. Guerriero, the executive director of the Log Cabin Republicans. Rudolph W. Giuliani, Governor Pataki, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger of California and others will be honored at the party.

On Tuesday night, the mayor will be the host of a party at the Sky Club restaurant for the Republican Majority for Choice, a group that supports abortion rights, thus opposing President Bush. Guests should expect cocktails, a great view, and Bo Derek.

Dick Riordan Should Have Known Better

In California, only Governor Predator is allowed to degrade females.

Post Hack Ergo Prompter Hack

A few days ago runtish Republican Mickey Kaus was rubbing his thighs at the thought that John Kerry or his supporters misled The New York Post into announcing Gephardt as Kerry's V.P. pick. Wrote the wee weblogger:

It's not nice to scam Deborah Orin! Inspector Ellis is on the case of how the N.Y. Post may have been misled into printing its now-famous cover of Kerry and Gephardt. ... P.S.: For a moment I thought it was the Weekly World News: "Kerry Picks Space Alien As Running Mate!" [Apologies to Rick Hertzberg]... Update: Alert reader G. suggests that the story's lack of a byline means that neither Orin--nor anybody else at the paper--was comfortable putting their name on it. Maybe it wasn't a deliberate Kerry feint after all, but just somebody running into a source (e.g., a Kerry fundraiser) who swears up and down that Gephardt's the man.

("Inspector Ellis" is Bush cousin/Faux Ho John Ellis, who called Florida for Bush, just in case you don't read Howie Kurtz's shitty column.)

But the New York Times reports that the Post was misled by a lying sack much closer to the paper, namely, satellite t.v. pornographer Rupert Murdoch:

When The New York Post tore up its front page on Monday night to trumpet an apparent exclusive that Representative Richard A. Gephardt would be Senator John Kerry's running mate, the newspaper based its decision on a very high-ranking source: Rupert Murdoch, the man who controls the company that owns The Post, an employee said yesterday.

The Post employee demanded anonymity, saying senior editors had warned that those who discussed the Gephardt gaffe with other news organizations would lose their jobs.

Even more interesting: If you read the entire Ellisblog entry to which Kaus links, Ellis explicitly says that it wasn't a Kerry mislead:

None of the Above! The editors did it! Which is why the story was so weirdly written and why the "apology" was so opaque.

So the question is: Is Kaus so dense he didn't read (or understand)the entire entry, or did Ellis add the last paragraph later to make Kaus look like even more of a tool?

There is no wrong answer.

Thursday, July 08, 2004

Oh Kenny Boy, the Feds, the Feds are calling
Put on the cuffs, you're goin' for a ride
The summer's come, the grand jury is indicting
'Tis you, 'tis you must go and stay inside.

Once you were my favorite Pioneer, oh Kenny
I hired Tommy White, I rolled upon your dirty dough
You were my fav'rite on Dick's Energy Task Force
Oh Kenny boy, oh Kenny boy, I loved you so.

But if you call, I must pretend not to know you
You are dead; your cash is no longer good to me
That White House, where I do all my lyin'
Is no longer ope' for you to bide a wee

And I shall hear, if thou shalt implicate me
If you cross me, prison hell on earth shall be
If you'll not take the Fifth Amendment
And keep your trap shut, so that I can pardon thee.

You'll have no peace on earth, Lay-Boy, if you screw me.

Wednesday, July 07, 2004

Conventional Blogging

This is a bit disappointing:

There will be 15,000 other media people (journalists, producers, and support staff) in Boston [at the Democratic National Convention]and 35 or so approved webloggers, all trying to make sense of the event, and tell the world what happens at it.

Not yet, keep reading.

Dave Winer of Scripting News got the nod and will be blogging from Boston. That's cool.

So expect dispatches from Boston that read like this:

Doc said of fellow Cluetrainer, Chris Locke and his alter-id, Rageboy: "The most out-there and purposely offensive blog. He's a genius, it's brilliant stuff. It's hostile." Then he laughs.

I've heard him say this before, and I've also heard David Weinberger say the same thing. They find Locke's cruelty amusing. I agree that Locke's site is purposely offensive, I might go a little further, but I wonder if Searls and Weinberger would like it so much if they were the targets?

Locke directs his hostility at people. I watched as he humiliated an old girlfriend. How does he get away with this? I wondered. People still seem to be his friend. I didn't say anything for fear that he'd go after me. Then he did. How did I offend him? I honestly don't know.

The Golden Rule comes before The Cluetrain Manifesto. If you aren't trying to treat people as you would like to be treated, you can't possibly do good, imho. You guys have taken a big detour, I think you've lost your way. When I first read the Cluetrain I was cheering, it was exciting. Now it's degraded and sick. Time for an intervention. Wake up guys, people matter. I still believe you're better than this. Much.

Who picked him, Zell Miller?

Anyone who says "Cluetrain Manifesto," much less reads it, is in need of an intervention.

Fortunately, the DNC picked some outstanding bloggers as well, such as Jeralyn Merritt of TalkLeft (who is also on Air America Radio tonight). If anyone has a complete list, please share!

p.s. If anyone cares, I didn't seek credentials, and can, off the top of my head, name 35 more deserving bloggers. (Dave Winer would not be one of them.) Besides, this new monitor is too damn heavy to lug around Boston for a week.

G.O.P. Midget Mickey Kaus tries out the anti-gay angle to bash Senator Kerry:

"Kerry managed to choose John Edwards Tuesday without getting the traditional money shot of the both of them holding their hands aloft. NBC's Tim Russert told Brian Williams this was 'very deliberate'--a carefully planned 'rollout' designed to dominate the news for most of the week. They'll hold hands tomorrow! ... Aren't Kerry's strategists severely overestimating the excitement surrounding this ticket? They're also failing to take into account the public's increased ability to swiftly process a less-than-shocking story which will be yesterday's news--an hour and a half ago, actually. Today, the Kerry-Edwards money shot would surely have led all the networks. Tomorrow it might well air after the commercial break in a quotidian campaign story covering both sides. ... When do they kiss?" (Moronic emphasis in original.)
Kaus's bigotry is starting to emerge.

Here's a tip, Mick. Tim Russert just might be talking out of his ass. Again.

Doggy Dick Morris Barks For His Master

Here's the kind of anal-penetrating analysis FOX News Contributor Dick Morris provides ... for a fee!:

This election will hinge on what Americans want in a president.

Okay. It's easy to take a sentence entirely in context and mock it. When it's written by a moron. So let's dig deeper.

Bush has to hope for neither too much success nor too much failure in his efforts to eradicate terror, pacify Iraq and curb the ambitions of North Korea and Iran. Too much success would erode the importance of these issues and let domestic questions come to the fore, to Kerry's advantage. Too much failure would besmirch his ratings on fighting terror and could cripple his key advantage, as April's outbreak of violence in Iraq hobbled him in the spring.

Kerry has to hope Bush will succeed so well in fighting terrorism that it disappears as an issue. Only if voters feel genuinely safe will they be willing to reject the man who brought them safety and take a chance on a man they don't entirely trust on the issue.

Should another terrorist attack hit our shores, Americans will likely react the opposite from their Spanish counterparts — we'll rallyaround the president both as an act of patriotism and as a recognition that his skills at fighting terror are still needed.

So the candidate who hopes the most will win.

The flabby foot fetishist repeats two Administration lies in the guise of analysis: That Bush brought this country safety and that Spanish voters were influenced by terrorist attacks.

His last sentence is a classic: If there's another domestic terror attack, voters will recognize Bush's skills at fighting terror. And if you play fetch with another prostitute, Dick, we'll recognize how much you love your wife.

Tuesday, July 06, 2004

Dissin' Big Daddy

Maybe the New York Times is a bunch of elite Northeastern snobs:

"A picture caption yesterday with the obituary of C.J. Hart, a pioneer in drag racing, gave a misspelled surname in some copies for a driver pictured with Hart. He was Don Garlits, not Garlitis."

(Correction, July 6 (newsprint edition only).)

Bench and Barr

Tonight, in honor of John Edwards' selection as John Kerry's running mate, CNN played a clip of Dubya at his most profound: "Frivolous lawsuits never healed anyone."

Yes, and medical malpractice never compensated for a lifetime of pain and suffering.

Let it not be said that Republicans hate all lawyers, however. Here's the kind of lawyer the Pukes love:

ATLANTA - The leader of a white supremacist group has pleaded guilty to firearms violations stemming from a raid on his Dahlonega home 10 months ago.

Chester James Doles, a former Klansman and the Georgia leader of the National Alliance, admitted Monday to illegal possession of a dozen guns.

During the 1990s, Doles was sentenced to multiyear terms for battery and burglary in Maryland. Federal law forbids possession of firearms by those who have been convicted of a crime and served more than a year.


Former U.S. Rep. Bob Barr, one of Doles' lawyers, said he expects Doles' sentence to be no longer than 10 years.

Bob Barr, the Freeper's Lawyer.

Wesley Pruden, Racist

Poor Wes "Klansboy" Pruden. He's boo-hooing to Howie Kurtz about how big, bad Bill Clinton called him names. The Putz, ignorant of history, plays along.

Washington Times Editor in Chief Wesley Pruden, for example, accuses Clinton of "a little bit of McCarthyism."

Writing about the Whitewater investigation in "My Life," the former president blames in part the "avowedly right-wing" Washington Times, "financed by the Reverend Sun Myung Moon, and edited by Wes Pruden Jr., whose father, the Reverend Wesley Pruden, had been chaplain of the White Citizens' Council in Arkansas and an ally of Justice Jim Johnson's in their lost crusade against civil rights for blacks."

"Typical Clinton," says Pruden, who grew up in Arkansas. "That was my father, who's been dead 25 years. It has nothing to do with me. No one has ever accused me of being a racist. . . . There's certainly a strong implication that I don't like blacks because my father didn't like blacks." Clinton "has a perfect right" to criticize the paper's coverage, he says, but "I don't know why he'd accuse me or the Washington Times of being racist."

President Clinton doesn't accuse Pruden or the Moonie Times of being racists (at least in Howie's excerpt). So stop soiling your sheets, Wes.

And Pruden's wrong about another thing. I accuse Pruden of being racist.

Take this example:

When he sat down for a long interview with Southern Partisan not long after his promotion, Pruden left little doubt about where he would lead the paper.

After singling out the Southern culture warrior, Sen. Jesse Helms, as a political hero, Pruden bragged about his great-grandmother shooting a Union cavalryman and boasted that the Times was the most "in-your-face" conservative newspaper in America. When Robert E. Lee's birthday rolls around every year, he said, "I make sure we have a story" -- especially because the occasion "falls around Martin Luther King's birthday."


The Rev. Pruden's son has avoided commenting on his father's politics. But in 1995, the Times ran two long op-ed pieces by the senior Pruden's old Citizens Council cohort, "Justice Jim" Johnson.

As recently as 2000 Pruden called dear Daddy's racist pal "my old friend." And just last year, Prudie protested too much that his old racist friend didn't really want the Klan's endorsement for Governor. Klansboy ... uh ... forgets to quote Johnson's repudiation of the endorsement, perhaps because IT NEVER HAPPENED.

Sorry, Klansboy, you can bury your Daddy, but you can't hide the stench of your racist pals.

Reliable Tools

Howie the Putz is practically begging for a job at Faux News. On last weekend's "Reliable Sources," the lead topic was "Are Media [sic] Ganging Up on Michael Moore?" The panel of truthists: Spikey Isikoff, who got busted lying about the Moore movie in Newstweak (not mentioned on the show), Chris "I Believe Ahmad" Snitchens, the Putz himself and Bill Press, who repeatedly flogged the "Moore the left's Rush Limbaugh" argument. Impeccable balance and the answer to Kurtz's question.

And here's the Putz's own stab at objectivity:

KURTZ: I got [sic] to jump in here. First of all, I want to mention my pet peeve, which is the film opens with a suggestion that Bush stole the election, and Moore says that few people know that Bush's cousin at Fox News helped call the election for the president. "Washington Post," November 14, 2000, by Howard Kurtz, "Bush Cousin Made Florida Vote Call" for Fox News. So much for that....

You see, it can't be true that few Americans knew about Ellis's relationship to Bush and position at FOX, because that would mean few Americans read Howie's shitty column.

Howie Kurtz: Reliable hackery.

Congratulations to Our Next Vice President, Senator John Edwards

Give 'em Halliburton!

Monday, July 05, 2004

John Leo, Computer Illiterate

John "White Teeth" Leo cheesed off that a "mildly kinky" Republican who can't close the deal has been denied his birthright.

"Judging by the Trib's self-righteous prose, you could be pardoned for thinking we were discussing the Pentagon Papers, not a mildly kinky sexual request that was never acted upon. How is this the business of the news media?"

Maybe Jack Ryan can spend his free time teaching basic computer skills to John Leo.

"It puts 'anything goes' philanderers off limits and targets only the backers of traditional moral values. The hypocrisy excuse was a low hum in the background of the Jack Ryan case. One of the Tribune's legal briefs identified him as a 'family values' candidate (the evidence for this perilous status did not turn up in my computer search), so apparently it was somehow ok to go gunning for him."

Yeah, Johnno. You have to search as far as ... Jack Ryan's website ... to see him identified as a "family values" candidate:

Don't go looking for this show on any network. It's not TV -- it's not even reality TV -- it's real life; the life of Jack Ryan, Republican candidate for U.S. Senate.

It's a life shaped by family values. Jack grew up in a family of 8, went to Dartmouth College, earned degrees from Harvard Law and Harvard Business School. Spent fifteen years in investment banking, made partner, and then Jack gave it all up -- to teach at an African-American high school on Chicago's south side. And last year, 100% of their graduates went on to college.

Jack's values taught him the importance of every child's life and his time in the inner city only made it stronger. To find out more about Jack, visit

And then there's these endorsements.

Oh, well, there's no victim like a Republican victim.

I'm a man ahead of my time.

Or at least six days ahead of Tim Noah.

Which is pretty slim braggin' rights.


Senator Kerry's going to name his anti-Dick tomorrow, or so it's said:

WASHINGTON (AP) -- Sen. John Edwards interrupted his Walt Disney World vacation last week to meet with Democratic presidential candidate John Kerry, adding a new level of intrigue to the vice presidential search, which Democrats expect to end Tuesday.

Kerry must select a vice presidential candidate at the Democratic National Convention, which begins in Boston on July 26. Delegates will be asked to formally nominate his pick.

The Massachusetts senator said Monday he had not settled on a running mate, but that didn't stop the rampant speculation in Democratic circles. Party leaders said they were told to expect a decision Tuesday.

Post your guesses, rumors and hopes in Comments.

It's a safe bet it won't be me, but otherwise I don't have a clue.

I did get these kind words from the next President:

I want to thank you for your support for my candidacy and the Democratic Party. At a critical moment, you and tens of thousands of supporters stepped forward to ensure that I and the party had the resources needed to continue waging the most effective Democratic presidential campaign ever. No words can express how grateful I am for what you have done for this party.

But he still was mum on the veepstakes.

My hope is that it's someone who can take the fight to Dick. Someone unlike Joe Lieberman.