Thursday, August 31, 2006

With Friends Like These...

Anybody see this story in the MSM? "UN denounces Israel cluster bombs" Here's an excerpt (the speaker is Jan Egeland, UN humanitarian chief):

"What's shocking and completely immoral is: 90% of the cluster bomb strikes occurred in the last 72 hours of the conflict, when we knew there would be a resolution," he said.

The UN ceasefire resolution which ended the month-long conflict between Israel and Hezbollah was agreed by the Security Council on Friday, 11 August, and came into effect on Monday, 14 August.

Mr Egeland added: "Cluster bombs have affected large areas - lots of homes, lots of farmland. They will be with us for many months, possibly years.

"Every day, people are maimed, wounded and killed by these weapons. It shouldn't have happened."

I thought not. In fact, I checked MSNBC, CNN, ABC, and CBS, and couldn't find a mention of it on their front pages. BBC, as you can see, carried it at the top of their page on Wednesday.

And so I ask, why are Human Rights Watch, Amnesty International, and the United Nations all siding with the terrorists? Why do they hate America and its friends? Why are they appeasing the forces of Islamo-fascism and terror? And how have the agents of terror infiltrated the BBC? (see yesterday's post). Is it time for an Ann Coulter precision bombing of both The Paper of Record at Times Square and our prime ally's number one broadcasting service?

We report...The Decider...decides.


Good news from the world of business: Texas Tea pays, if you're at the top of the org chart. Yep, you read it right: $32M a year for oil company execs, in the year that brought you $70 a barrell and $4 a gallon.

Good thing we're not shutting down our golf courses to build houses for people here. Well, if you made $32M a year, you'd have to spend it on somethin'.

Nope, that wasn't in the MSM, either. So what the hell is news to these people? Well, how about the critical issue of GM's "Survivor" sponsorship(MSNBC)? Or the identity of the blogosphere's "secret senator"(CNN)? Maybe Mayor Rocky vs. the VFW in Utah rates the front page for you (ABC)? Or perhaps the burning question that you want answered in your headlines is, are bagged salads safe (MSNBC)?

All of the above were pulled right off the front pages of their respective MSM websites, amid prime time. I mean, c'mon, you couldn't make this shit up.


Finally tonight, a little self-promotion. Last week, I applied on Daily Rev's behalf to join BlogAds, the liberal advertising network that brings in revenue for the likes of onegoodmove, Daily Kos, and many much smaller blogs. We have hosting costs to pay here, and I do invest money into software and such that is used to make the blog a little better; and I'm afraid the donation link in the sidebar is treated like a wet fart in church on a hot Sunday. So I thought, all right, we've got the traffic (their minimum is 2,500 page views per week, and DR averages around 12,000 per month); and most folks say our work is okay—why not raise some cash and a little consciousness at the same time?

We were denied, in part because our traffic, though it meets the requirement, hasn't been meeting it long enough (they said make it last another month or two like this and it would be fine). But the real reason was couched in these terms:

We don't do mixed left-right sites. Your partner may be a bitter Republican, but until he changes his affiliation, there is no gurantee (sic) that your site will represent a "liberal" perspective...if your partner calls himself a liberal, I see no barrier to adding you.

Now that's a direct quote from a fellow whose blog I link to in my Blogroll. Several points arise to me from all this:

1. The guy clearly didn't read Daily Rev. If he had, he'd recognize that Terry (my Republican partner) is plenty more than "a bitter Republican"; and he'd appreciate the tenor and direction of our work, along with the fact that two fellows viewing the same problems from different angles can share ideas and build a consensus (remember that? it's called "democracy").
2. If the left is going to indulge in the same cult of affiliation as we've grown to recognize as the neocon right's signature, then guess what—they're playing in Karl Rove's home ballpark, and they're going to lose again, and for the same reasons. How many elections has the left-wing candidate lost over the past six years by a margin of less than 3 percent? What if the left had brought in all those "disaffected Republicans"—welcomed them in, made them a part of their dialogue on the nation and its future? Might those narrow defeats have turned out differently for the left—Diebold notwithstanding?
3. Finally (and this is the self-promotion part, I guess), what a wonderful feeling it is to be part of a little body to which labels do not stick! I teach that we have to learn how to get off the iron bar of bipolarity, and I mean it, and even try to live by it. The safest way to avoid extremes is to live entirely off the narrow line of ideology on which they reside. I feel that it's possible; I've written books and many articles and blog posts about it.

Mind you, I'm not thrilled to see an opportunity for revenue go by the boards; but I am grateful that Daily Rev doesn't fit in anyone's pigeonhole. We have a Republican who, this past Monday, wrote, "stop the madness—vote Democrat!" And he meant it. We have a registered Democrat who is openly critical of his party and many of its purported leaders. In short, we don't fall in line behind an agenda or an image: after all, how could you see clearly from the back of a line?

Instead, we seek leaders and messages that embody reason, sense, energy, and moral strength. We claw the surface and try to find what's buried beneath the spin, the advertising, and the imagery of platform-making and parochial agendas. We strive to be a deceit-seeking missile of inquiry upon the bodies of fundamentalism, power, display, and falsehood. We think that if enough people become involved in the freethinking activity of independence, then just maybe over the course of the next two years there will be a gradual but unmistakable transformation in the citizenry and the government of this once-free, once-democratic nation, and we will be returned to the place where it all began, where it was young, vibrant, and preponderantly truthful. We will, with some effort and a lot of tough questions, come back to the moment we are in, and once again be a Republic.

If you agree, then perhaps you can write to Mr. Bowers and respectfully ask him to explain what he means by "affiliation", and whether he really thinks liberals are going to make any headway in this culture at this moment in history by maintaining a closed, insular society. I would also ask him, "how many more elections must be lost before we rediscover the meaning of 'the conversation of democracy'?"

We will close with some thoughts on that very point, from Mr. Al Gore, who will be speaking here in New York City today.

Democracy as a system for self-governance is facing more serious challenges now than it has faced for a long time. Democracy is a conversation, and the most important role of the media is to facilitate that conversation of democracy. Now the conversation is more controlled, it is more centralized...The only thing that matters in American politics now is having enough money to put 30-second commercials on the air often enough to convince the voters to elect you or re-elect you... The person who has the most money to run the most ads usually wins.

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