Bush to Say McCain Learned Lessons of 9/11

September 2, 2008

Let’s see what were those lessons.  We should have kept a cabinet anti-terrorist chair?  We should have given our anti-terrorist czar access to the National Security Adviser?  We should pay attention to what our anti-terrorist czar tells us?  We should heed warning from the FBI of an immanent attack involving planes?  That we should avoid hasty statements like McCain’s that we should invade Iraq and the war would be over in a short time.  That we should avoid quick judgments like McCain’s that Iraq had weapons of mass destruction?  That we should equip our troops better? That we should better respect U.N. inspectors and their reports?  That we should have better ability to care for our injured troops?  That our military adventures can result in the increase of terrorist activity and preparedness?  That war can drive us into debt and hurt our economy?

Hold on Sarah You Were not Going to Do This

September 2, 2008

Remember the interview a few months ago in which Sarah Palin said that it was unfortunate that Hillary Clinton was complaining about her treatment in the media because she was perceived as a “whiner?”  If not not whining, what are we supposed to call this,?  Stronger words come to mind.

Followup On Goodman Arrest Coverage

September 2, 2008

The Washington Post covered Amy Goodmans arrest.  Good for them. Not only that but the UPI and several locally owned newspapers reported on the event.  Google this and you will see a flood of small outlets covering it.  This is a very good sign with respect to the influence of independent media.  I am writing this about 7 hours after the event.  Hopefully it will get more play and the coverage will be influenced by this persepctive.

Palin’s Qualifications and Values

September 2, 2008

The evangelicals have got a lot to celebrate with Sarah Palin.  She chose to have a Down Syndrome child while she pursued her political career and didn’t even let it slow her down.  What a triumph of values.

She may have been governor for only 20 months but how many governors of 20 months can include in that time a pregnancy, the birth of a special needs baby and an ethics investigation.  She has been more occupied than you might ordinarily suppose and has still found time for the duties of office.

She obviously imbued her family with her values as well since her teenage daughter has chosen to become pregnant and plans to become married: two strikes for family values in one blow!  What greater proof of value laden leadership could our country want?  This augurs well for a possible career in politics for her daughter.  It looks like the beginnings of a value based dynasty.

Attention has been drawn to Palin’s life next to — virtually rubbing up against —  the iron curtain in Wasilla.  (Here’s a gallery of shots of Wasilla.  The rust must be from the iron curtain.)  Remember she won that beauty contest before the Berlin wall came down.  And she played on a team that won the state basketball championship on a court virtually in the shadow of the evil empire!  She is the poster child of poise under pressure.

What do you think it was like living in Wasilla after the U.S.S.R. collapsed?  So close to such instability and all those missiles.  Sure the missiles were pointed at the lower 48 but but any misfires were bound to land nearby.

I agree that her work with the Wasilla PTA gives her international experience and experience with national security.  Being so close to Russia, the children surely had come under alien influence.  Without the right guidance, who knows, these children could have become foreign agents or worse.

Living in Alaska you are almost close enough to look Russians in the eye, to see their soul.  Of course someone living in London is significantly closer to Moscow than Wasilla is to any town in Russia, but Limeys are notoriously insensitive to such things.  Actually the people in New York are closer to Moscow than Wasilla is to any city of any size — by several thousand miles. Siberia is actually rather large and sparsely populated.

That Sarah had a sense of the close proximity of the Ruskies is itself a tribute to her farsightedness.  I understand that, as governor of Alaska, she regularly consulted with the residents of Nome on international matters, as Nome is even closer to Russia than either Wasilla or Juneau.  I wonder if McCain considered the mayor of Nome at all?

But I think she a good running mate for McCain.  God knows he fudges on his record freely.  In just a couple of days she has already falsified hers or at least rendered it somewhat fanciful.  Her blithe fantasy flight through history strikes Alaskans as deceitful.  This seems to be leaking out of the state as the Associated Press has picked up the story.

The New York Times points out that this was not really a lie, more like an exaggeration.  She supported the bridge to nowhere, and ran for governor supporting the bridge. Then half way through her 20 month term as governor she reversed fields, after it was clear that the money from the federal government for the bridge would not be coming.

So let’s be clear about this she was all for the bridge to nowhere  until it became clear that the federal government would not give money for the project.  Then she, when she could not get federal money for the project, was against the project but not taking the money.

Saturday she bragged about telling Congress “thanks but no thanks” for the pork barrel project as if she had not been  trying to get federal money it.  She said “thanks but no thanks” only after she was told that her efforts were futile and she would not get the money for the bridge.

She switched her position after McCain began campaigning about this bridge being an example of pork barrel politics.  She could not very well continue her support of the bridge and have allegiance to the national party.  So she took all the money from the federal government that had been earmarked for the bridge and used it for other things.  So the literal truth is that she said “no thanks” for bridge funding after she was not going to get it and “thanks” for the money.

One Heart Beat Away

September 2, 2008

I have mentioned that unless Wasilla is a very unusual town of 6,000, that there might be some question about giving its mayor the reins of the world, even with a year and a half on the Alaska governor’s office.

Apparently I was not alone in that concern.

Hold it.  I undersold Ms. Palin.  This  interview with Mrs. McCain informs me that Ms. Palin was president of the Wasilla PTA and that Wasilla is closer to Russia than any of us are, so she has lived national security and knows the enemy, I guess.

Play the Daily Show on this website to get many people’s reaction, presented in Jon Stewart’s inimitable style.  On the clips of the announcement look at McCain’s face.  Is it my imagination, or does he look worried and upset.  How would you like to be greeted by his smile?

Two Media, Two Worlds

September 2, 2008

Today Amy Goodman was arrested.  There are videos of the arrest but right now it is not clear exactly what charges have been made.  (Here’s her narrative of events leading up to the arrest.) This was a thunderbolt through the independent media community and, because of her many awards, should at least have been noteworthy to big media.  It, however, has not merited mention in the releases of the corporate-controlled media, who are reporting an entirely different world.

Compare this report of the heroic supression of anarchists with this report of police attacks and actual interviews with the “anarchists.”  Here is a report and interesting video interview involving a gunpoint raid of a house containing independent journalists.  Here’s another uncontrolled report.  This side of things is ignored in the mainstream media’s widely reported battle between the forces of good and evil anarchists.  (Here are some pictures of the “anarchists.”)   The Washington Post to its credit presented an even-handed report of the people in the streets.

There is more local controversy about police action against independent media than the major media reports.

To report Amy’s arrest would give credence to a media that is not consonant with the major outlets.  I wonder whether any major outlet at all will make mention of this.  I seriously doubt it but I would love to be surprised.

On my way to work one day I was listening to the car radio and flipping between Democracy Now! on 91.3 FM and NPR.  I was listening to reports of the flight of Jean-Bertrand Aristide from Haiti.  NPR was reporting that Aristide had suddenly quit and was abandoning his country for places unknown.  It was interviewing Condoleezza Rice and other government officials who expressed puzzlement at what was happening.  Amy Goodman was interviewing Aristide’s driver who was present when about two dozen gunmen burst in and forced him out of his office and into a plane.  She spoke with others on the scene, all of whom said that the kidnappers were American.

Amy herself now seems to find herself in one of these parallel universes.

Amy Goodman Arrested! And Now Released

September 2, 2008

Two hours ago Amy Goodman was arrested while trying to speak on behalf of two of her producers who had been detained by the police.  Read this article and call!

The website Democracy Now! is a good place to look to keep up with this and an exceptional source of convention news coverage.

She’s now reported just released.