Newsclipping of the Day :: Naomi Klein Interview

If you haven't read Naomi Klein's The Shock Doctrine: The Rise of Disaster Capitalism this is a really good INTERVIEW with her today.


Praying This Will Come to our Little Town!


Let us all fall down and thank brother bill for tackling this subject.

“Since starting on Politically Incorrect in 1993, it has been my pleasure over the last decade and a half to make organized religion one of my favorite targets. I often explained to people, ‘I don’t need to make fun of religion, it makes fun of itself.’ And, then I go ahead and make fun of it too, just for laughs.

With religious fanatics like George Bush and Osama bin Laden now taking over the world, it seemed to me in recent years that this issue—this cause of debunking the man behind the curtain—needed to have a larger, more insistent and focused forum than late night television. I wanted to make a documentary, and I wanted it to be funny. In fact, since there is nothing more ridiculous than the ancient mythological stories that live on as today’s religions, this movie would try to be a real knee slapper. Unless, of course, you’re religious, then you might not like it.

Who could I get to direct me on such an epic event? In reality, there was only one man, and his name is Larry Charles. I hope that together we fulfilled that quest. Which really isn’t that hard, considering that comedically speaking, the topic of religion is pretty much hitting the side of a barn.

As a comedian, religion has always interested me—it was the single easiest subject to make jokes about. I think that tells us something: comedians look for things that don’t make sense, that are illogical.

Even as a young comedian, routines I did that got the biggest laughs and got me invited back on the Tonight Show were the religious ones—like the one about being half Catholic and half Jewish and bringing a lawyer into confession: ‘Bless me father for I have sinned—and I think you know Mr. Cohen…’

Politics is a rich area, but even politicians, although they promise some ridiculous stuff, don’t approach the level of, for example, the Mormon practice of promising couples a planet to rule over in the after life if they have a really good marriage on earth. They give you a planet—kinda like when someone gives you a certificate that says a star has been named after you—except here, they really give you the star!

Join me in this final battle between intelligence and stupidity that will decide the future of humanity. Coming soon to a house of false idols near you.”

-Bill Maher

Socialized Losses, Privatized Profits

If anybody wants to actually see the bill, HERE it is.

As the Magna Carta was to individual rights, this bill may very well be to the Fall of the American Empire.

Surely disaster will result, despite Nancy Pelosi's self-congratulation and smiles today at the press conference.

Precedent and the Law Being Swept Away in Financial Crisis




Be sure to go HERE and vote in this NOW (Bill Moyers) poll on whether or not Sarah Palin is qualified to be veep.



Newsclipping of the Day :: The Coming Security & Surveillance State

Canadian investigative journalist Naomi Klein--of No Logo and Disaster Capitalism fame--wrote a REALLY SCARY PIECE about all kinds of developments in harnessing the power of technology to spy on us all. It appeared 3 months ago now, in the Rolling Stone. And it is a whopper.

When the revolution comes, these simple tools will be used to stop it in its nascent state. Before guns and bombs and barricades and guillotines are even taken up.


Newsclipping of the Day :: John McCain and Wrecking our Economy

HERE is a completely scary piece on John McCain and Phil Gramm--McCain's dream Treasury Secretary--and their hefty roles in the current meltdown we see happening in the economy. I am really scared about where the bottom of this thing may be.


What happened to The Sherman Antitrust Act of 1890 ??

Why doesn't it apply to the United States Government?

How can Bank of America be allowed to swallow Merril Lynch, to become an even bigger, unaccountable-to-anyone behemoth?

Why does our Government bail out big corporations--say Chrysler or Bear Stearns or AIG--but is unconcerned with its individual citizens facing bankruptcy over the mortgage crisis?

When did we start selectively enforcing the laws of the land and blowing off others?

Isn't our Supreme Court in place to prevent that happening?

The corruption and collusion and desperately dishonest GREEDY dealings happening right now WILL make it into Civics Textbooks and History Textbooks before long.

Will we go even deeper into the dark beyond this? Or will we wake up and make real, systemic change to resteer our course?

We are on a hairpin curve right now.

We are at such a turning point. We either plunge into a real Dark Age, in which we all become pawns and soldiers in a war waged by Corporations-as-Commanding-Generals; or, we make a real effort to rediscover what We the People means, and how that ethos is made manifest in our everyday life.

We have very little Government left, it has all been outsourced to crony capitalist "companies" such as Blackwater and Halliburton. Once we had Government, now we have Corporations.

The coup--performed by Corporations--has already occurred folks.



Newsclipping of the Day :: Steinem on Palin and Change-Envy

Here are some words of wisdom from Gloria Steinem that a friend just emailed. It's nice to hear an articulate critique from a woman on this. I wish Susan Sontag were still around to weigh in on the perfect-storm surreality of the Palin phenomenon.

"Here's the good news: Women have become so politically powerful that even the anti-feminist right wing -- the folks with a headlock on the Republican Party -- are trying to appease the gender gap with a first-ever female vice president. We owe this to women -- and to many men, too -- who have picketed, gone on hunger strikes or confronted violence at the polls so women can vote.

We owe it to Shirley Chisholm, who first took the "white-male-only" sign off the White House, and to Hillary Rodham Clinton, who hung in there through ridicule and misogyny to win 18 million votes.

But here is even better news: It won't work. This isn't the first time a boss has picked an unqualified woman just because she agrees with him and opposes everything most other women want and need. Feminism has never been about getting a job for one woman. It's about making life more fair for women everywhere. It's not about a piece of the existing pie; there are too many of us for that. It's about baking a new pie.

Selecting Sarah Palin, who was touted all summer by Rush Limbaugh, is no way to attract most women, including die-hard Clinton supporters. Palin shares nothing but a chromosome with Clinton. Her down-home, divisive and deceptive speech did nothing to cosmeticize a Republican convention that has more than twice as many male delegates as female, a presidential candidate who is owned and operated by the right wing and a platform that opposes pretty much everything Clinton's candidacy stood for -- and that Barack Obama's still does. To vote in protest for McCain/Palin would be like saying, "Somebody stole my shoes, so I'll amputate my legs."

This is not to beat up on Palin. I defend her right to be wrong, even on issues that matter most to me. I regret that people say she can't do the job because she has children in need of care, especially if they wouldn't say the same about a father. I get no pleasure from imagining her in the spotlight on national and foreign-policy issues about which she has zero background, with one month to learn to compete with Sen. Joe Biden's 37 years' experience.

Palin has been honest about what she doesn't know. When asked last month about the vice presidency, she said, "I still can't answer that question until someone answers for me: What is it exactly that the VP does every day?" When asked about Iraq, she said, "I haven't really focused much on the war in Iraq."

She was elected governor largely because the incumbent was unpopular, and she's won over Alaskans mostly by using unprecedented oil wealth to give a $1,200 rebate to every resident. Now she is being praised by McCain's campaign as a tax cutter, despite the fact that Alaska has no state income tax or sales tax. Perhaps McCain has opposed affirmative action for so long that he doesn't know it's about inviting more people to meet standards, not lowering them. Or perhaps McCain is following the Bush administration habit, as in the Justice Department, of putting a job candidate's views on "God, guns and gays" ahead of competence. The difference is that McCain is filling a job one 72-year-old heartbeat away from the presidency.

So let's be clear: The culprit is John McCain. He may have chosen Palin out of change-envy, or a belief that women can't tell the difference between form and content, but the main motive was to please right-wing ideologues; the same ones who nixed anyone who is now or ever has been a supporter of reproductive freedom. If that were not the case, McCain could have chosen a woman who knows what a vice president does and who has thought about Iraq; someone like Texas Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison or Sen. Olympia Snowe of Maine. McCain could have taken a baby step away from right-wing patriarchs who determine his actions, right down to opposing the Violence Against Women Act.

Palin's value to those patriarchs is clear: She opposes just about every issue that women support by a majority or plurality. She believes that creationism should be taught in public schools but disbelieves global warming; she opposes gun control but supports government control of women's wombs; she opposes stem cell research but approves "abstinence-only" programs, which increase unwanted births, sexually
transmitted diseases and abortions; she tried to use taxpayers' millions for a state program to shoot wolves from the air but didn't spend enough money to fix a state school system with the lowest high-school graduation rate in the nation; she runs with a candidate who opposes the Fair Pay Act but supports $500 million in subsidies for a natural gas pipeline across Alaska; she supports drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Reserve, although even McCain has opted for the lesser evil of offshore drilling. She is Phyllis Schlafly, only younger.

I don't doubt her sincerity. As a lifetime member of the National Rifle Association, she doesn't just support killing animals from helicopters, she does it herself. She doesn't just talk about increasing the use of fossil fuels but puts a coal-burning power plant in her town. She doesn't just echo McCain's pledge to criminalize abortion by overturning Roe v. Wade, she says that if one of her daughters were impregnated by rape or incest, she should bear the child. She not only opposes reproductive freedom as a human right but implies that it dictates abortion, without saying that it also protects the right to have a child.

So far, the major new McCain supporter that Palin has attracted is James Dobson of Focus on the Family. Of course, for Dobson, "women are merely waiting for their husbands to assume leadership," so he may be voting for Palin's husband.

Being a hope-a-holic, however, I can see two long-term bipartisan gains from this contest.

Republicans may learn they can't appeal to right-wing patriarchs and most women at the same time. A loss in November could cause the GOP's centrist majority to take back their party, which was the first to support the Equal Rights Amendment and should be the last to want to invite government into women's wombs.

And American women, who suffer more because of having two full-time jobs than from any other single injustice, finally have support on a national stage from male leaders who know that women can't be equal outside the home until men are equal in it. Barack Obama and Joe Biden are campaigning on their belief that men should be, can be and want to be at home for their children.

This could be huge."

Steinem is an author, feminist organizer and co-founder of the Women's Media Center. She supported Hillary Rodham Clinton and is now supporting Barack Obama. This article originally appeared in the Los Angeles Times.


Chris & Don: A Love Story

We are going to see this Friday night at the Wexner:


If anyone is interested, HERE is the link to the photoshoot FST refers to in the comments on one of my earlier posts. Have you seen the Atlantic Monthly Cover? This IS pretty bad, but doesn't rise to the level of badness as that horrible waffle thing. Speaking again of waffling, I can't believe any Republican would ever again bring up waffling, considering how George Bush's record is a complete waffling of Republican canons. Not to mention how the many faces of McCain have changed over the years. What happened to him anyway? I remember--even as a pretty staunch liberal--going to the Andersonville National Historic Site in south Georgia back in the 90s and thinking to myself "he'd be a great president." He is a completely different man now. Then he was defined by a desire to get money out of politics and he seemed like an honest, decent man, who had a life story anyone could respect. Now, he seems completely involved in the politics of deception and hell bent for leather to continue the wholesale giveaway of government function to private companies (also known as "outsourcing." See Jeremy Scahill or Naomi Klein, among many others, for more on that).

Campaign 2008 :: Unbelievable Advertising

Newsclipping of the Day :: It's All Just a Game. A Very, Very Nasty Game

"A box of Obama Waffles is seen in Washington, Saturday, Sept. 13, 2008. A vendor at a conservative political forum was selling boxes of waffle mix depicting Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama as a racial stereotype on its front and wearing Arab-like headdress on its top flap. The product was meant as political satire, said Mark Whitlock and Bob DeMoss, two writers from Franklin, Tenn., who created the mix and sold it for $10 a box at the Values Voter Summit sponsored by the lobbying arm of the Family Research Council."

(AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

Can we just talk about this for a sec? I know you all have busy days, but just for a minute.

The above is from Yahoo News today. I wish there were a way to not only boycott, but withhold every penny from media sources that publish crap like the above. I've had my yahoo email account for more than 10 years now. But apparently Yahoo News has been invaded by the Media Snatchers.

Yahoo News for crissakes!

They cover this "story" like it is real news. They are trying so hard to have their messages of hate and deceit keep us all divided.

They are all trying SO hard to change the subject. To make it all about Sarah's beehive. Or John's service as a POW. Or lipstick on Pigs. It's all so full of lies and deceit and obfuscation and insult. I am SOO not proud of my country these days.

I apologize to all Americans who are the countless victims of this kind of baiting and insult. The people behind the image above--and the "news" organizations giving it air--are so wrong and so destructive. If you want to kill yourselves, fine, but leave the rest of us out of it and stop dragging us all down. We are all doing just fine.

I applaud Obama for sticking to the high road. I'm happy to see Obama have a laugh over whole Pig-With-Lipstick episode with David Letterman. Not only is he talented, creative, smart, and prepared, but he also knows how play the game by his rules, and not those of the other side. He knows how to have his values and principles without killing them in the process of leveraging them.

Sure, the culture war's machine of lies, smears, and insult is going to win over a few votes. But in the main, it's going to backfire. Stunningly.

And the tactics of desperation we are all seeing now in the media are so completely stomach turning, i'd wager that they will drive away many more votes than the smears win over. People are not stupid. Conservatives need a new party. Liberals need a new party. And i'm not talking about ONE.

And sure, the Republican Party may be in shambles after November, but what of the GAZILLIONS of dollars going to all the crony capitalists and "outsourcers" in place of what used to be our Government? How will all of that be undone? What will Congress and our new President do to codify the limits of power of the Executive Branch? Will they do anything? Will the destruction of our Government we've seen in recent years pale in comparison to what is to come?

One thing is for sure. We will never have our Government back, the way it was before conservatives began feeding off of it and destroying it, more than a generation ago.

What will be left? How will we go forward? Will we even be able to rebuild?

Who do you trust to answer those questions? Please click on the comments link below and tell me.


Newsclipping of the Day :: McCain or McSoprano??

The more and more i found out about McSame, the more and more he looks like Tony Soprano. HERE is a story that sounds like he victimized some poor guy that worked for Cindy McCain, during her drug addled years in the early 90s. This is certainly going to play well with the "Country First" ad campaign.

Campaign 2008 :: Unbelievable Advertising

Now is a good time for me to start a series on the unbelievable commercials of the 2008 Presidential campaign season. We are reaching new lows folks, in the art of the smear.

Installment One:


Newsclipping of the Day :: The Problem with the Media

My Magnificent Mister sent me a very good essay from Glen Greenwald the other day that looks at Keith Olbermann's recent demotion through the lens of everything that is wrong with our media today. If you are following this particular story, are interested in how all of our main stream media outlets have become propaganda outlets for the right, and how corporate power controls it all, or how the media curries favor with those in power, you'll be interested in this one. They do have a double standard, with their decrees that right-slant is neutral and in their obsession with keeping liberal voices out of news and analysis. And Greenwald is right, the only viable answer is to create new media outlets, from scratch, that will compete and kill these idiotic outlets feeding us all misinformation. Would someone please forward this post to Ted Turner? I'd really like to talk to him about it. The media really are dinosaurs.

Speaking of dinosaurs, did anyone see this Sarah Palin quote on CNN last night? I was on the front porch, chatting with Steven and a friend, and caught a gander of it through the windows, crawling across our blaring TV inside:

"God made dinosaurs 4,000 years ago as ultimately flawed creatures, lizards of Satan really, so when they died and became petroleum products we, made in His perfect image, could use them in our pickup trucks, snow machines and fishing boats."

Lizards of Satan. Wow.


HERE is another piece from the Huffington Post about how the media simply doesn't function anymore.
Fight the H8 in Your State