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« Liberal Outrage: October 2005 | Main | Liberal Outrage: December 2005 »

Liberal Outrage

So Now We See How They Could Have Sided With Germany

http://www.nytimes.com/2005/11/19/international/asia/19comics.html


By min | November 24, 2005, 8:03 PM | Liberal Outrage | Link



It's Because They Hate Our Freedom

So what do you think about these rumors and claims that the U.S. planned to bomb the al-Jazeera headquarters in Qatar?  In addition to claims that previous bombings at other al-Jazeera offices were not so accidental afterall?  It could all amount to alot of nothing.  Conspiracy theories.  The British government is threatening to charge newspapers with the Official Secret Act if they reveal the contents of these leaked documents.  Documents that supposedly relate an argument between Bush and Blair over military conduct in Iraq.  Kos seems to think this means there's something to the claims. Right now the International Federation of Journalists are claiming 16 journalists and media staff have died at the hands of U.S. forces and no proper investigation into the deaths has been done.


By min | November 23, 2005, 11:08 AM | Liberal Outrage | Link



Why "the market" can't regulate corporations

Well, good old DuPont has been hiding a study it did that said that they are poisoning us.  No sane person expects Corporations to do anything that isn't in their own interest and that's why we need a strong federal government so that we can have an EPA that is actually testing and regulating new products that come to market, instead of relying on reports from the people making the product.  Libertarians would abolish government regulation altogether and let the magic of the marketplace solve any problems, saying that if a company made something that wasn't safe, people wouldn't buy it and the company would be forced to improve their product.  But explain to me how people dying from cancer due to this 20 years from now can have any impact on Du Pont doing this today?


By fnord12 | November 18, 2005, 10:13 AM | Liberal Outrage | Link



Burning Flags?

Are they still going on about this?   Give me a break.


By fnord12 | November 18, 2005, 10:03 AM | Liberal Outrage | Link



Shake and Bake

Well, i meant to post this about 4 days ago, but somehow forgot to actually publish it.  here it is a few days late but no less outraged.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

"White phosphorous is a colorless-to-yellow translucent wax-like substance with a pungent, garlic-like smell. The form used by the military ignites once it is exposed to oxygen, producing such heat that it bursts into a yellow flame and produces a dense white smoke. It can cause painful burn injuries to exposed human flesh."

And that's what we used in Fallujah.  We didn't shoot it in the air to illuminate the area.  We shot it at people.  Now, the Pentagon wants to say that they followed the letter of the law and only used it on "insurgents" and not civilians.  Let's say that's true.  Let's say they somehow knew exactly who was in that town at that time, that they knew 100% that every single one of the civilians of that town had actually left.  They used a chemical that causes human flesh to burn down to the bone.  On people.  Tell me again how we're better, how we have higher moral standards, how valiant and shiny we are, bringing freedom to the oppressed.  Go ahead.  Tell me.  Cause when you're done with that, you can go and read this about what the CIA has been doing with its prisoners to get around that pesky Geneva Convention thing.


By min | November 18, 2005, 6:56 AM | Liberal Outrage | Link



Now with Infinite Levels of Order!

Katerine Harris was Florida's Secretary of State during the 2000 Florida election debacle and she's now running for Senate, so i guess people are digging up the dirt on her, and apparently she's been reading Umberto Eco's Foucault's Pendulum (Full disclosure: I was, briefly, Umberto Eco in college).

From Kos:

Katherine Harris, then Florida's Secretary of State—and now a member of the U.S. House of Representatives—ordered a study in which, according to an article by Jim Stratton in the Orlando Sentinel, "Researchers worked with a rabbi and a cardiologist to test ‘Celestial Drops,' promoted as a canker inhibitor because of its ‘improved fractal design,' ‘infinite levels of order,' and ‘high energy and low entropy.'"

The study determined that the product tested was, basically, water that had apparently been blessed according to the principles of Kabbalic mysticism, "chang[ing] its molecular structure and imbu[ing] it with supernatural healing powers."


By fnord12 | November 16, 2005, 5:46 AM | Liberal Outrage | Comments (1)| Link



Christians offended by facts. Again.

From Hullabo:

Wal-Mart said Thursday that a customer service employee named Kirby had written an inappropriate e-mail to a woman who complained that the retailer had replaced a "Merry Christmas" greeting with "happy holidays." The company, based in Bentonville, Ark., also said Kirby no longer worked for Wal-Mart.

Kirby wrote that Christmas resulted from traditions such as Siberian shamanism and Visigoth calendars.

"Santa is also borrowed from the [Caucasus], mistletoe from the Celts, yule log from the Goths, the time from the Visigoth and the tree from the worship of Baal. It is a wide wide world," Kirby wrote.


By fnord12 | November 16, 2005, 5:45 AM | Liberal Outrage | Link



Forrester blames Bush

From Talking Points Memo:

Doug Forrester, in his first postelection interview, laid the blame for his loss in the governor's race last week directly at the feet of President Bush. He said the public's growing disaffection with Bush, especially after Hurricane Katrina, made it impossible for his campaign to overcome the built-in advantage Democrats have in a blue state like New Jersey.
"If Bush's numbers were where they were a year ago, or even six months ago, I think we would have won on Tuesday," Forrester said. "Katrina was the tipping point."


By fnord12 | November 16, 2005, 5:44 AM | Liberal Outrage | Link



He Was Just Trying to Get Hired

Alito told Senator Diane Feinstein (D-CA) that when he wrote a document stating he felt proud to argue the Constitution didn't give a woman the right to an abortion, he was just "an advocate seeking a job".  So what is he now?  A judge seeking a job?  A very prestigious job, I might add.  Now that he's been a judge for 15 years, we're supposed to believe he's above that sort of thing?  Judges aren't political?  How can that be when they're appointed by someone in a political office?

And to say as a judge you will only interpret the law without allowing your personal views to affect that judgment is either deceitful or naive.  I don't think people are capable of making a completely objective opinion that is in no way affected by their views.  How we interpret things is deeply affected by how we think and feel.  As Adam says, lawyers and judges might not actively seek out case law to support the outcome they desire, but the cases where a precedent is established that's favorable to a person's way of thinking will be the ones that stick out in their minds.  Therefore, these will be the cases they use to present their argument.  With our crazy system of precedent, and all the cases that have taken place over the years since our judicial system has been in effect, you can pretty much argue any side you want with case law.

I didn't care for Meier's.  She may not have been a hard-line evangelist type conservative, but she seemed too soft and too easily swayed by whomever she adored (currently, it seems she's enamored with the Bush empire).  Mebbe when she didn't need them anymore she would have shown her true self, but just as likely, this is her true self.  Now with Scalito as the next nominee, I'm not sure if I would have preferred the sycophant.  Both are scary.  He's too slick for my own good.

Feinstein says she felt he was sincere in his answer.  I don't know if that means she's dumb or he's really good at seeming sincere.  Oh, I suppose there's the possibility that he was telling the truth, but that would require Pat Robertson's God to strike him down or turn him to a pillar of salt, wouldn't it?


By min | November 15, 2005, 9:46 AM | Liberal Outrage | Link



Long Live the 2 Cent Stamp!

Alas, the day that we all feared has arrived.

UPDATE:  Rod pointed out that the article says that since 2003 Congress requires the Postal Service to maintain a $3.1 billion escrow that Congress will later decide how to spend.  i thought that sounded pretty shady myself.  why does the postal service need a $3.1 billion escrow and exactly how does Congress usually spend that money?  in this article, it says the escrow was put in place because the Postal Service found out it had been overfunding its pensions.  from the way it reads, it seems like the shadiness is on the part of how the White House chooses to release the funds.  On top of that, it also notes a second issue regarding pensions for postal workers.  Pensions associated with prior military service are supposed to be the responsibility of the Treasury.  For some reason, the Bush administration pushed that burden onto the Postal Service.

"Congress, the Postal Service, the mailing industry and postal employee unions--just about everyone except White House officials--say this cost should move back to Treasury."


By min | November 15, 2005, 9:18 AM | Liberal Outrage & Ummm... Other? | Comments (1)| Link



I Will Destroy Your Kung Fu!

I've always felt that all American Chinese parents should send their kids off to a shaolin temple or a real kung fu school.  And i regularly perpetuate the myth that all the kids in China learn kung fu as part of their regular school curriculum.  If that were true, mebbe this story would read differently.  Watch some Jet Li movies.  You don't see him getting bullied.


By min | November 14, 2005, 7:15 AM | Liberal Outrage | Comments (3)| Link



Free traders, Dean Baker mocks you

Despite the fact that these are supposed to be examples to show how "free trade" is a hypocritical policy, i'd actually like to implement them.

He's also got what he says will be his last piece on the Housing Bubble, but it's a 14 page pdf so it's going in the bafroom.


By fnord12 | November 11, 2005, 3:06 PM | Liberal Outrage | Link



Who cares what celebrities think?

This is John Cusack, who i think i liked in High Fidelity?  and Grossey Pointey Blankey?  Yes?  I am thinking of the right person?

Right wing pundits go crazy when celebrities speak out (unless it's Arnold or Ted Nugent). The idea is that they are these out-of-touch elitists that have noidea how real 'murikans think, and they should mind their own business and concentrate on entertaining us.  I'd like to turn that around a little. The majority of pundits and editorialists are millionaires.  Most went through journalism school, which teaches you how to be "appropriate" and "objective" and leans heavily on relying on official sources.  A lot get  money and talking points from right wing think tanks.  Many are handpicked in their Young Republican days and basically given patronages from these think tanks.  They rarely talk to people outside of Washington politicians and other journalists.  There's a real dinner party social club element to political journalism.

Meanwhile celebrities are regular people who suddenly wind up with a lot of money and a voice after struggling for a long time in their field.  They don't necessarily have a great knowledge of politics or history and they often come off sounding inarticulate when it comes to talking politics, but so do most Americans, and their perspective is probably closer to the views of the average American that a Washington pundit.  At the very least, it is equally close.  Granted, they were usually the weirdos in your high school class who were in the Theater Group, but at least they're coming from ordinary families from all over America.

So when a John Cusack writes an article like this, i'm glad.  Not because it's informative or thought provoking the way a Noam Chomsky essay might be, but because maybe it's reaching an audience that a Chomsky can't reach.  And i think the right wing knows that.  The left wing has already been excluded from the political debate in our media and the "liberal" Washington pundits are usually very timid and centrist, so when a celebrity speaks out, the right wing knows they have to attack them in the worst way to shut them out.  The O'Reillys and the Hannitys probably do think that these are extreme positions, because they are views they never hear around Washington, not even from Colmes or Thomas Friedman.  But the Catos and Heritage Foundations behind the O'Reillys and Hannitys know they have to sic the dogs on them because the celebrities are inadvertently raising topics and positions that the think tanks have spent the last 30 years successfully excluding from mainstream media.


By fnord12 | November 11, 2005, 2:49 PM | Liberal Outrage | Link



We now return to our regularly scheduled misery

In an email to friends and supporters, soon-to-be-ex Times columnist Robert Scheer blames Publisher Jeffrey M. Johnson for his ouster from the op-ed page:

On Friday I was fired as a columnist by the publisher of the Los Angeles Times, where I have worked for thirty years. The publisher Jeff Johnson, who has offered not a word of explanation to me, has privately told people that he hated every word that I wrote. I assume that mostly refers to my exposing the lies used by President Bush to justify the invasion of Iraq. Fortunately sixty percent of Americans now get the point but only after tens of thousand of Americans and Iraqis have been killed and maimed as the carnage spirals out of control. My only regret is that my pen was not sharper and my words tougher.


By fnord12 | November 11, 2005, 2:43 PM | Liberal Outrage | Link



Take the Zemblian Challenge

My vast audience also complains that my blog is too serious, so i sympathize with the King.


By fnord12 | November 11, 2005, 2:42 PM | Liberal Outrage | Link



Not reliable

Capital Hill Blue is not a real news source.  I don't know what they are, but they have a reputation for making stuff up.  It may be that they publish comments and leaks from staffers who are frustrated but that legitimate news groups won't touch, or it may just fiction.  But at the very least you can read this and pretend that it's true.


By fnord12 | November 11, 2005, 10:32 AM | Liberal Outrage | Link



I live in pointyhead land

Unlike Steve Gilliard, i think this is a great idea, especially if the money is funnelled to mass transportation.  But, I also think towns like Somerville should close down their Main Street to traffic.


By fnord12 | November 11, 2005, 10:29 AM | Liberal Outrage | Link



Pro-Wife Extremism

Yeah, that'll go over real well.  Go with that.  Make it the next Republican talking point.


By fnord12 | November 11, 2005, 10:00 AM | Liberal Outrage | Comments (1)| Link



Republicans falling apart?

BillmonJoshua Mica Marshall, and the Wall Street Journal all think so, but Fox is still holding out.

Marshall also says:

It just occurred to me that even if Democrats manage to totally blow this coming election cycle and don't make substantial pick-ups in November, we're still virtually guaranteed twelve months of watching Republicans furiously working to find ways to stab each other in the back.

So, really, even the fall-back is pretty decent.

Just a thought.


By fnord12 | November 11, 2005, 9:42 AM | Liberal Outrage | Link



More Humane Treatment of Whales

They've researched it and they finally came up with a more humane way of killing whales - a BIGGER BOMB.  Yessir, gone are the days of harpoons and black powder when we had to wait an hour after hitting a whale for it to finally die of hemorrhaging.  Now, we only have to wait 15 minutes for him to die.

"Penthrite, short for pentaerythritol tetranitrate, is used in blasting caps and easily detonates. Once the grenade penetrates the whale's skin and explodes, it produces a concussion that lethally shocks the central nervous system."


By min | November 11, 2005, 9:20 AM | Liberal Outrage | Link



Democrats Fail to Make a Stand Yet Again

Yesterday in the Senate, there was a vote on whether or not to add a provision to a defense bill that would bar people held as "terror suspects" from filing lawsuits to challenge their detentions.  Republican Lindsey Graham from South Carolina came up with the idea.  What a peach.  He feels that these examples of "lawsuit abuse" are tying up Dept of Justice resources.  Hey, you know what?  We should bar anyone from filing lawsuits unless they are corporations or meet a minimum income requirement.  That sure would cut down on the number of lawsuits using up resources.  And, hey, let's make more illegal things legal so that the courts have fewer cases to deal with.  We can start with police brutality.  And corruption.  Corruption's a big resource drainer.  Oh, oh, and how about domestic violence?  Those chicks need to learn their place.  They get all these weird ideas fro the TV, you know?

So, that's not the worst bit.  The worst bit is that in the 49 to 44 vote, 5 of those "Yeas" were Democrats.  Republicrats.  Moles.  If the 5 had voted against the provision, the vote would have been 49 to 44 against instead of for.  Here's a list of the 5 Republicans posing as Democrats and links to their sites in case they belong to you and you wanted to leave them a note:

Kent Conrad - N. Dakota
Mary Landrieu - Louisiana
Joe Lieberman - Connecticut (big surprise there.  neocon in democrat clothing)
Ben Nelson - Nebraska
Ron Wyden - Oregon (josh and robn, have you got something to say?)

Needless to say, I wrote a letter to the Democratic Party and here it is:

What are you guys doing?  5 Democrats sided with the Republicans in adding the Graham provision.  That's disgusting.  These lawsuits are not "frivolous" as Graham describes them.  People are being detained and not charged, which is illegal no matter who they are.  If they are criminals, charge them, put them on trial, sentence them.  Should we make other crimes legal as well so they don't "clog up" the system with "frivolous" lawsuits?  You need to rein in those supposed Democrats in your party who continually side with the Republicans on these issues.  They need to toe the party line or choose a new party.  Deny any support to them in terms of campaigns and such.  If they want to be Republicans so badly, they can get their funding from them.  Unless, of course, this is the type of party you want to form.  A party that is fractured and kowtows to the Republicans and supports stripping away basic human rights.


By min | November 11, 2005, 6:36 AM | Liberal Outrage | Comments (2)| Link



A context for everything.

Juan Cole on the French Riots.  Though why the government didn't just give them Elvis is beyond me.


By fnord12 | November 10, 2005, 9:46 AM | Liberal Outrage | Link



Ok, sorry.

I apologize for my Chavez rah-rah-ing, ok?

Here's a good little essay on Latin American politics.


By fnord12 | November 10, 2005, 9:36 AM | Liberal Outrage | Comments (1)| Link



Oh, Yeah. That global warming thing? Total hoax.

"Rising sea levels, desertification and shrinking freshwater supplies will create up to 50 million environmental refugees by the end of the decade, experts warn today."

And there will be no problems with taking in these refugees.  I mean, people are known to be kind and open and generous and willing to accept new people into their countries, right?  There certainly aren't any examples of asylum seekers being treated poorly.


By min | November 10, 2005, 6:57 AM | Liberal Outrage | Comments (2)| Link



Corrupt like a Senator

From Steve Gilliard's Election Round-up:

But it is New Jersey which truly interests me.

Why?

Because the dynamics there are unique. Independents play a large role in elections as do taxes. So you can elect a moderate Republican like Tom Kean or Christie Whitman. But in the late 90's the wingnuts rose, the prolife, anti-government folks and thus their nosedive began.

And I have never disliked a candidate as much as I disliked Forrester.

What amazes me is that people like Chris Smith didn't run. Instead, hack Doug Forrester was allowed to run a second doomed race. All he had was money and a bad toupee. His claims had been demolished in the GOP primary and he made a hash of dealing with Democratic corruption. People don't think Corzine is a crook, he ran Goldman Sachs.

Dem corruption in New Jersey is endemic. A smart candidate could have explained how corrupt the Dems are. But Forrester had no clue how to do it. And the worse it got, the worse he got. He attacked a quadriplegic on stem cell research and got his ass handed to him. The Bush commercials didn't help. He looked just like Nixon in them. Tying him to Bush was smart.

Now, I normally have a strong stomach for politics and associated antics.

But the Joanne Corzine ad was disgusting, and that takes a lot in Jersey politics. I couldn't stop thinking about the Corzine kids and what a total fucking bastard Forrester would have to be to do that. Joanne Corzine was acting out of bitterness. It's something she'll come to regret (especially after the state troopers find that cache of drugs in her backyard:)), because she didn't hurt her ex-husband, but her children. Donna Hanover could have fragged Giuliani in a hundred ways, but she didn't want to hurt her kids. Joanne Corzine didn't care about that, but Forrester and his wife should have. There were rumors of him tagging a former staffer.

I think this is what led to his second serious defeat. He not only couldn't make the case, he jumped in the gutter to try.


By fnord12 | November 10, 2005, 5:52 AM | Liberal Outrage | Comments (3)| Link



This is probably why he started calling himself I. "Scooter"

Scooter Libby's out-of-print novel is selling on Amazon. But apparently his name was Lewis Libby at the time? Check out the last entry, with the inscription to "Bob", that is going for $2,400.  Cursor, in a rare instance of snark, implies that it's Robert Novak.  Is he trying to buy back the book before someone figures it out?


By fnord12 | November 9, 2005, 10:18 AM | Liberal Outrage | Link



Normon Solomon arrested.

For holding up a sign in a non-Free Speech zone.

My god.  "Self-described writer".  "Norm" Solomon?


By fnord12 | November 9, 2005, 10:01 AM | Liberal Outrage | Link



Pennsylvania is a monkey's uncle, but Kansas inherits the wind

Pennsylvania voted out all the crazies on the schoolboard who wanted to teach intelligent design, but Kansas's board voted to redefine science "so that it would not be explicitly limited to natural explanations".

Some great lines in the Kansas article from the dissenters and the students.  Not everyone in Kansas wants to go back to the Dark Ages.


By fnord12 | November 9, 2005, 9:46 AM | Liberal Outrage | Link



This might be the first time i voted for someone who won.

I voted for Corzine instead of a third party candidate because i think he's a pretty good liberal (he's one of the few who voted against the war, for example) and i liked that he ran his campaign against the Republican party platform as a whole, not just Big Head.  But now i'm partially responsible for him so i'll be watching him carefully.  He'd better stay on my good side or i might write an angry blog post!  He can start by appointing me as his replacement to the Senate.

Meanwhile, our local Green Party (who got .5% of the vote) is gearing up for the 2003 elections, so watch out!


By fnord12 | November 9, 2005, 9:37 AM | Liberal Outrage | Link



Why Adam wouldn't build Temples in Civ

Well, we've always sort of known this but it's pretty vindicating to see it in print.  A part of me always wondered if these politicians were really crazy or just really cynical and exploitive.  Now we know.  The question is, will the Christians wake up?  Since the Republican party doesn't really care about them, maybe they'd support my initiative for proportional representation so they can form their own party. 


By fnord12 | November 9, 2005, 9:36 AM | Liberal Outrage | Link



Compare and contrast

So read this.

And then this.

Lesson?  Religious people aren't allowed to engage in politics, unless it's for a right-wing cause.


By fnord12 | November 9, 2005, 9:35 AM | Liberal Outrage | Link



Chavez Vs. Bush

This Wall Street Journal article explains.  And i shouldn't personalize it.  It's really "Latin America defeats Corporate America".  But i do like Chavez.

The AP also had this line:

Chávez's speech reflected the diplomatic problems encountered in the writing of the Summit of the Americas final text. Venezuela refused to agree to a note, inserted by US representatives, mentioning "the 96 million people who live in extreme poverty," in Latin America and the Caribbean unless there was also mention of the "37 million poor" living in the United States.

And this from the New York Times:

After President Bush's disastrous visit to Latin America, it's unnerving to realize that his presidency still has more than three years to run. An administration with no agenda and no competence would be hard enough to live with on the domestic front. But the rest of the world simply can't afford an American government this bad for that long


By fnord12 | November 9, 2005, 9:30 AM | Liberal Outrage | Link



Any article is an excuse for a rant against corporations

Here's a guy that really could claim that he invented the internet (or at least that he was involved in its development), and he says we could never do it again because the corporations wouldn't let us.  There was a time that the ability to incorporate was a privilege that governments allowed for special projects when it was in the public interest, and they were disincorporated when they no longer servered that purpose.  The special projects usually involved harnessing private sector innovation in ways that a single small business couldn't.  Now corporations stifle innovation.  Whether you're talking about solar power, mass transportation, medications that actually cure diseases (instead of treating symptoms or doing stupid cosmetic things), creating a food supply that is healthy and abundent, space exploration... anything...  we really haven't progressed much in the past 50 years.  Corporations definitely continue to develop things, but they are products, and some of them are pretty damn cool (like my iPod), but they are definitely geared towards maximizing profits for stockholders, not benefiting society as a whole.  Which would be fine if someone else were in charge of making societal improvements.  But they aren't, because we have a philopsophy that relies in the invisible hand of the market for innovation, so our government has a very small role when it comes to innovation (except when it comes to the military, but that's a different topic).  That free market philosophy is also very cynical.  It comes from Adam Smith, but his system did not include corporations.   In fact, he distrusted even the early corporations that existed in his time (the ones that governments could disincorporate if they got out of control) and certainly never imagined the global mega-corporations of today.  The people who push that philosophy today, from the Catos and Heritiges, (ought to) know that this isn't what Smith intended and that it certainly isn't working.  We're still using a coal and oil based energy system.  That is so 1875!  We're still driving cars 40 miles back and forth to work across jammed up highways (It's 2005!  We should have flying cars and teleporters by now and you know it!)(Or at least an effective and convenient mass transportation system that runs on clean electricity generated by solar power).   We are technologically backwards and we can't allow this to continue.   A while back i posted an essay by Dean Baker on the idea that we would get a better return on investment if we doubled the amount of money the government spent on pharmaceutical research.  We should do that in all areas.  To Americans, that very idea is "socialism", and once someone calls "socialism" the argument is over.  But at least a "socialist" government is theoretically accountable to the people via elections (so the proper solution is to increase government power while adding electoral reforms).  Corporations aren't accountable to anyone, and as they continue to have more power over our lives, that's called "despotism".


By fnord12 | November 9, 2005, 9:26 AM | Liberal Outrage | Link



Profitable Non-Profit

“I’d think very carefully before giving money or blood to the Red Cross. Every pint of blood you give for nothing is sold for $165 to hospitals."

So I came in to work today not in the best of moods.  In general, on any given day, I'm not on the best of moods.  It's my nature.  Then I saw the American Red Cross left a giant poster on the circulation desk advertising their next blood drive on this campus.

I really hate the American Red Cross.  (Which should not be confused with the International Red Cross)

They are owned/run by neo-con Republican business-types.  During Katrina when Brownie was busy eating his dinner and shopping at Nordstroms for appropriate disaster attire, FEMA ordered the Red Cross out of the area and refused to allow them in to help people.  The people on the ground reported this.  The reason given was because if people got help, they might decide to stay instead of evacuating.  That's right.  Because a little food and water from the Red Cross is enough to convince me that I want to stay in my flooded house with no electricity and no sanitation.  "Oh, I'm just fine here on my roof.  No need to evacuate me, sir.  I kinda like watching the water lap back and forth over the side of the house.  It's soothing."

Needless to say, the people on the ground thought FEMA's actions were outrageous.  But the very next day, the official statement came from on high in the Red Cross corporation that stated that everything was fine and FEMA and Red Cross were good buddies and no unusual things were going on.

Then I recently found out that the American Red Cross takes the blood people donate to them and sells it.  Sells it to hospitals and pharmaceuticals and the like.  Their website says they only charge people in need for the blood because they need to cover the costs of testing the blood and other adminstrative stuffs.  According to that website I linked, they make quite a tidy profit on the sales.  The report is from 1989, so the info is pretty old.  This article is much more recent and mentions the shady things they did with the money donated when the Towers were hit.

Pretty nice for a non-profit organization.  They also have an exclusive deal with the government.  They're required to be the aid organization on site during any disaster that occurs in this country.  That sounds pretty good in one sense.  The American Red Cross will be there to help out people in need.  Except, how much of the money people donate to these disasters do you suppose gets lost in administrative costs and how much do you think the victims see?

I don't give them money anymore.  When they pull out their pie chart to show me exactly where each dollar is spent, then mebbe I'll reconsider.


By min | November 8, 2005, 8:52 AM | Liberal Outrage | Link



Third Parties and Why They Suck So Much

I think i'm not alone in asking "what the hell is wrong with you guys?"  In this state, the third parties are always putting up candidates for major elections.  Senator, Governor, etc., but in my county, they don't have a single local candidate running.  None of them do.  Not the Greens.  Not the Socialists.  Not even the Libertarians (they freak me out, btw).  Exactly what makes them think they can run in a big election and win?  Nobody really takes the third parties seriously.  And they're not fighting from an established power base like the Reps and Dems.

Remember the debate during the senate campaign?  First, the Greens had to sue to get third parties into the debate.  Then they were allowed to participate for a short portion before being shuffled off so that the real candidates could have a real debate.

Running on big tickets is an incredible waste of the little money they have.  Instead, they should concentrate on supporting local candidates.  Run people in as many townships as they can.  The funds required for a local election compared to a state election means they can prolly run several candidates for what they paid to back a sure loser on the state level.

Once they get their people in on the local level, work up to county level.  Keep working up from the bottom.  And eventually, they will have built up enough people who support them so that they're no longer the weirdo third party that can be shunted off to the side.  They become a viable alternative to the two-party system we've been taught to accept.

It's all about infiltration, man.  Get your operatives in everywhere and then next thing they know, you're running the government.  Revolutions don't work if you don't have the people behind you.


By min | November 8, 2005, 8:36 AM | Liberal Outrage | Link



Election Day

Today's the day to go vote for the Governor.  And for some councilmen, too (is that not PC?  should i have said "councilmembers"?  :P).  I am pretty apathetic,
really.  From what I've seen, campaigning means sending lots of junk mail to the constituents and hope the name recognition will work in your favor at the polls.  That and the uber-threatening head shots.

I'm voting for the guy who doesn't look like Orson Welles.  That would be Corzine.  Why not one of the third party candidates?  Because I'm very disappointed with the third parties right now and you know there's no chance they'd win.  Refer to the next post for more in depth info on that subject.  And since I'm so apathetic, I might as well cast a second vote for Rod's candidate.


By min | November 8, 2005, 8:28 AM | Liberal Outrage | Link



Scalito

The initial spunk shown by the centrist party (the Democrats) when Alito was nominated seems to have died down if this AP article's tone is anything to go by.  Not surprising, but disappointing all the same.  They keep harping on the abortion issue which will ensure the Catholics will never switch sides.  If they would wake up and start pointing out the other flaws with this guy's brain, they might have a chance.  In the grand scheme of things, Catholics are very liberal, esp. compared to Evangelists.  The only tie these 2 groups have is abortion.  Quit strengthening that tie, you morons.  Work on bringing the dissenting issues to light.

But the Democrats are really dull, so I'm not holding my breath for this to happen.


By min | November 6, 2005, 10:12 AM | Liberal Outrage | Link



Didn't you get the memo?

"Guys, we're supposed to be ethical."


By fnord12 | November 5, 2005, 7:38 AM | Liberal Outrage | Link



Good Stuff

From the Washington Post, of all places.

Frist was now sputtering. "This is an affront to me personally. It's an affront to our leadership. It's an affront to the United States of America!" Turning sorrowful, he vowed that "for the next year and a half, I can't trust Senator Reid."

"Mr. Leader," one stunned journalist observed, "I don't remember you being so exercised over something before."

"You've never seen me in heart surgery," the senator, a transplant specialist, replied.

Dr. Frist's patients -- not to mention the Tennessee medical licensing board -- may be surprised to learn that he had operating-room rage.

...

As lawmakers raced between the chamber and Frist's office, reporters surrounded Frist chief of staff Eric Ueland. "It was a nonstop rant to build up to a political stunt!" Ueland said of Reid. As he leveled these charges, Ueland turned in a 360-degree circle so that all the journalists could hear him.

"You're spinning!" one of the reporters observed.


By fnord12 | November 3, 2005, 9:56 AM | Liberal Outrage | Comments (1)| Link



Secret torture camps in former Soviet Union buildings

Can we call them gulags yet?

Update: This is going to get interesting.


By fnord12 | November 3, 2005, 9:47 AM | Liberal Outrage | Link



Well that was worthless while it lasted

Remember the 7 "moderate" Democrats who made a deal with the 7 "moderate" Republicans, agreeing to not fillibuster the insane Priscilla Owen, Janice Brown, and William Pryor in return for... ummm, i'm not sure exactly?  Well, that's it, the deals off.  Thanks for playing.


By fnord12 | November 2, 2005, 7:19 PM | Liberal Outrage | Link



My Letter to Corzine

It's lovely being so pretentious that you would post your angry rant letters on the internet as if people care to read it:

I can't believe the best you can do is say Forrester is lying about cutting taxes.  I've been inundated with mailings from both of you for the last week and all you can say is Forrester wants to raise our taxes.  Understand this:  I am a progressive, possibly a radical.  So, centrists like Democrats are far easier to swallow than right Republicans.  And I am very likely going to vote for Corzine next week, so you're not trying to sell a product to anyone in this household.  But everytime I look at one of your mailed fliers, I cringe because it is just pathetic.  Absolutely pathetic.  There is a wealth of issues out there to talk about and this flimsy non-issue is all you can think to advertise to the possible voters out there?  This is a he said/she said match.

How about health care?  How about a living wage?  How about the sprawl?  How about funding for schools, especially in poor areas (which ties into property taxes, in case you weren't following).  How about a solution to address the problem of rising gas prices coupled with congested roads and a complete lack of a public transportation infrastructure?  Which leads nicely into the price of auto insurance in this state.

There are a myriad of things you could discuss.  But no, we'd rather more sensational one-liners.  Great.  Thanks.  I'm sure that'll nudge the swing voters out of their apathy.

Just because NJ is traditionally a blue state and this is a gubernatorial race, it doesn't mean you can run a sloppy campaign.  Don't forget that nationally, Democrats are not fighting from a position of power.  You can't afford to lose any voters in this state to the Republicans and your typical voter doesn't grasp the nuance of raising taxes on the rich versus raising taxes all around.  All they hear is "raising taxes".  I guess it's because they've gotten used to hearing sensational one-liners.


By min | November 2, 2005, 4:32 PM | Liberal Outrage | Link



Humor

This is funny.

Well, i think so, anyway, but you can't trust me cause i also think this is funny (from the same site):

As Lester Thurow joked a long time ago, if you exempted farm income from tax (hence disallowing farm losses as offsets to other income), tax revenues would increase.


By fnord12 | November 2, 2005, 2:04 PM | Liberal Outrage | Link



Sovereignty

From Juan Cole:

Iraqi President Jalal Talabani said Tuesday before the United Nations: "I categorically refuse the use of Iraqi soil to launch a military strike against Syria or any other Arab country . . . "But at the end of the day my ability to confront the US military is limited and I cannot impose on them my will."


By fnord12 | November 2, 2005, 2:03 PM | Liberal Outrage | Link



Tom Tomorrow

Newest comic.


By fnord12 | November 2, 2005, 10:15 AM | Liberal Outrage | Link



Coherent

Digby says most of what i said yesterday much more gooder than me.  Scroll up and see he finds the fact that the al Qaeda operative "escaped" as believable as i did.   Maybe i should just put a re-direct on my blog to Hullabaloo.


By fnord12 | November 2, 2005, 10:13 AM | Liberal Outrage | Link



Wal-mart

Political hacks from both parties are now employed by Wal-Mart to attack an indie documentary.


By fnord12 | November 2, 2005, 10:11 AM | Liberal Outrage | Link



It's On the Internets

That's right.  I said "internets" and I meant it.  Other countries want more control over the internet and the U.S. doesn't want to let go.   Surprise surprise.  Who's surprised?  Could money possibly be a factor?  The reasoning offered is that these countries who most want a more controlling role are no advocates of freedom of speech.  Not like us - I mean, as long as it's the right sort of speech, that is.  And you'll know when it's the wrong kind cause the shouting heads on the tv and the radio will tell you so.  Tank goff for Ann Coulter.  And Pat Robertson will announce that it's time to assassinate you.

Don't get me wrong.  In China, the government would as soon shoot you in the back of the head as let you express an idea contrary to the one they're advocating.  Our government won't kill us for saying the "wrong" thing.  They'll just shuffle us off to an unseen corner, marginalize us, and mark the way with signs that say "Caution: Leftist Freaks Ahead."  The difference with us is it's not the government who want you killed.  It's the people.  The Ann Coulters and the Pat Robertsons who are calling for your head.  And you've got to trust that the government is still against that sort of thing.  Now you know why I stick to coastal states and states north of Maryland.

But I digress.....we were discussing the internets.  In-ter-netsssssss.  If we don't allow other countries to play a bigger role in developing the net, they will start making their own.  Everyone will have their own version.  The system we currently have will breakdown.  You will no longer be able to access any site from anywhere in the world.  At least, not like you can now.  People in more controlled countries will have even greater restrictions on content placed on them.  They prolly won't be allowed to view the content on the other internets if the government doesn't approve of that country's political stance.

Right now the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (Icann) controls the net and they answer to the U.S. Dept. of Commerce.  They decide what top level domain names are created and who gets to control them.  ICANN works with a panel called the Governmental Advisory Committee (GAC).  Other countries want to be on the committee, too, because GAC exerts a good deal of influence on ICANN's decisions.

That part seems fair enough so aren't we being selfish for not letting everyone get a piece?  Nobody likes the idea of the U.S. being the only ones holding power.  Everybody should be allowed to play in the sandbox.  The bigger problem arises when you start talking about what exactly the committee will be allowed to control.  You get into the issue of content.  Because, as noted above, countries like China don't want anything and everything up on the net.  Iran.  Saudi Arabia.  Brazil.  On this point, the EU and Canada are opposed.  They don't want content to become a state-controlled issue.  The EU proposed a committee that only oversees the governance of essential tasks, not content, a forum to discuss best practices on making the internet work.

The Bush internet advisor, Michael Gallagher, claims they will not "bureaucratise, politicise and retard the management of the DNS [Domain Name System]".  Who here believes him, cause I've got a bridge to sell you?


By min | November 2, 2005, 6:02 AM | Liberal Outrage | Comments (1)| Link



What the heck is this?

They fightin?

"Invoking a rarely-used rule, Democrats temporarily shut down television cameras in the chamber, cleared galleries of tourists and other onlookers, forced removal of staff members and recording devices and stopped work on legislation."

"The United States Senate has been hijacked by the Democratic leadership," Majority Leader Bill Frist of Tennessee said. "Never have I been slapped in the face with such an affront to the leadership of this grand institution."


By fnord12 | November 1, 2005, 2:13 PM | Liberal Outrage | Link



Positive attitude.

Or setting myself up for further disappointment.


By fnord12 | November 1, 2005, 2:10 PM | Liberal Outrage | Link



You can't stand(?) the truth

My favorite peak oil profit is extra cranky today, (so cranky he can't even get movie quotes that even i know right?) but he does take a knock at min's latest object of scorn.


By fnord12 | November 1, 2005, 2:09 PM | Liberal Outrage | Link



The "I Told You So" Party

So i was thinking how with this new judge ("Scalito"), there's no way Roe won't get overturned, which means that abortion rights will revert to the individual states.  And i was thinking how a majority of americans ~80% believe abortion should be legal, and how if Roe were overturned that maybe Americans would be outraged and would wake up and start voting.  But then i realized that the majority of the people who think abortion should be legal probably live in "blue" states anyway where it would continue to be legal so most people probably wouldn't get all that outraged or worry about the fact that poor people in Kansas couldn't get abortions.   And of course, that sort of thinking is very similar to what the Socialists in Germany said when Hitler got elected.  Then i read Digby's post which pretty much settled it.


By fnord12 | November 1, 2005, 9:12 AM | Liberal Outrage | Link



You love the McLaughlin Group

John McLaughlin:  On a political probability scale of zero to ten---zero meaning zero probability, ten being metaphysical certitude---how probable is it that this scandal will go beyond Friday's Libby indictment?
Pat Buchanan:  I would give it, John, a 2 to 3.  No more.
Eleanor Clift:  I would give it a 7.  We still have a media and we still have a Congress.
Tony Blankley:  Pat's got it right---about a 2.
Mort Zuckerman:  Oh, I give it a 6 or 7.  This is not over by a long shot.
John McLaughlin:  It's a 7!


By fnord12 | November 1, 2005, 9:10 AM | Liberal Outrage | Link



More Rampant Liberal Media

Fnord tells me Nicholas Kristof is the "liberal" columnist for the NYT.  On Sunday, Kristof wrote an apology to Patrick Fitzgerald.  I think he needs to write an apology for his apology.  Or stop pretending to be a liberal when he's a neo-con shill.  I mean he works for the NYT.  That paper shills for the neo-cons.  Do you really think they're hiring "liberal" journalists?

"First, Democrats should wipe the smiles off their faces. This is a humiliation for the entire country, and their glee is unseemly. Moreover, the situation is not that neocons are all crooks, but that one vice-presidential aide must be presumed innocent of trying to cover up conduct that may not have been illegal in the first place."

This is what passes for an apology these days.  Well, it's from a "journalist".  What can you expect really?  "...must be presumed innocent of trying to cover up conduct that may not have been illegal in the first place."

Outing a CIA operative may not be illegal as long as you repeatedly assert that you had no idea about anything being illegal.  Try that "I didn't know" defense next time you run a red light and see how the cop takes it.  And covering it up is fine, too.  As long as nobody was having any oral sex in the oval office, we're good.

Thanks, Nick.  You're a great American.  You're a great journalist.  Bully for you. 

Alright, mebbe that's a bit harsh.  Mebbe he's just one of those dumb centrist democrats who think they're liberal but are too busy counting their money to look up the word.


By min | November 1, 2005, 9:03 AM | Liberal Outrage | Comments (1)| Link



I. Libby

So, what kind of big freak are you if your a 55 year old man in a high political position and go around telling people your name is "Scooter".  And on top of that, refuse to reveal what your real name is.

I thought the "I" had to stand for something embarassing for him to try to keep it secret.  Something like Iris.  But it's not.  It stands for Irving.  He would rather be called the nickname his father gave him as a baby for "scooting" around the crib.  Freak.


By min | November 1, 2005, 8:52 AM | Liberal Outrage | Link



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