Thursday, February 22, 2007

Calling Media and Government Back to Work

When you start wars that are based solely on profit or paranoia, you are going to have My Lai's and Mahmudiya's. In other words, Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld, Wolfowitz, Feith, and all the other madmen who conceived, planned, and staged this predatory madness are rightly to be considered as accomplices in the crimes of Sgt Paul Cortez, Specialist James Barker, and all their ilk who have tortured, raped, abused, and murdered civilians in Iraq. When soldiers are sent out to battle poorly trained for their mission, badly equipped, and questionably motivated for the jobs they must do, this is what happens. This—on top of all the lies, fabrications, wanton deceit, hateful ignorance of due process and international law, and arrogant incompetence—is grounds for impeachment and subsequent criminal indictment of all who conspired to concoct and prosecute this war, this insane institutional abuse of humanity.


Let's see what else is on the front page of the news...Britney's out of rehab, and Apple has made peace with Cisco over the name of a phone. Front page news: can the mainstream media become a little more petty once in a while, just to help relax us all now and then? But Bob Herbert has seen the reality behind all this:

It’s been obvious for the longest time that the line between news and entertainment has vanished. News is entertainment. And the death of Anna Nicole Smith is more entertaining — for the time being, at least — than the war in Iraq or the plodding machinations of bin Laden and Zawahri.

Obviously, there are some journalists out there who are trying to do their jobs and make a difference in the world of information, just as there are politicians who are also trying to work toward changing government for the better. Yesterday, I paid a visit to the office of one of the latter, Congresswoman Yvette Clarke of Brooklyn (who incidentally won her seat in a 90% landslide—now that, Mr. Bush, is political capital).

Rep. Clarke has been kind of know, working in Washington, where her constituents overwhelmingly agreed she should be. Her staff is hurriedly trying to put together a home office for her, even as they take time to meet with people like me, who have no money to offer, no influence to pander, no light of fame to emanate. So maybe it would help if a lot of us could contact our media outlets and clearly tell them: we want to see and hear more about people like Rep. Clarke, and a lot less about Britney's addictions and Steve Jobs' legal pissing contests.

And while we're at it, we might add a message to Hillary and Barack: the election isn't for another 16 months, and Congress is faced with a war and the surge of global terrorism that this same war has incited, along with an entrenched cadre of war criminals and a constitutional crisis. Could you get back to Washington, like now, stop fighting among yourselves, and do the god damned jobs that we elected you to do?

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