Friday, April 28, 2006

From Krugman's column, which by the way, you may be able to access for free via your local library's web site:
The history of FEMA and other agencies during the Clinton years shows that a president who is serious about governing can rebuild effective government without renaming the boxes on the organizational chart.

On the other hand, the history of the Bush administration, from the botched reconstruction of Iraq to the botched start-up of the prescription drug program, shows that a president who isn't serious about governing, who prizes loyalty and personal connections over competence, can quickly reduce the government of the world's most powerful nation to third-world levels of ineffectiveness.


Why isn't this the "narrative" on Bush? It seems fairly obvious and simple to this news consumer.

Thursday, April 27, 2006

Another day, another steaming pile of Hinddroppings passed along without comment by Howard Kurtz.
Tony is one of the world's nice people. He is also a close student of the news, and I think he's been known to read our site from time to time. His congeniality and media background will buy him some popularity with the reporters who cover the White House. But essentially all of them are partisan Democrats, so that goodwill will last for about a week. What the White House really needs is someone who can push back aggressively against the liberal tilt of the media, and make the administration's case directly to the people. Tony Snow is equipped to do this, I think; the question is, will he?

Emphasis added.For all the huffy "you don't know journalism" statements that Kurtz makes in his on-line columns and chats, you'd think that he'd throw some of that attitude Hindvapor's way. Perhaps instruct him about objectivity, the process of reporting and editing, and of considering and presenting multiple viewpoints, instead of passing along this kind of alternate reality nonsense.

Or does Kurtz agree that reporters = partisans? Partisans - actively, openly working towards a political goal, or for a political party. Does Kurtz agree, because I don't see a disagreement here.

Or does Kurtz file this one under his "my readers are smart enough to figure this out" cop-out?
I'm all for a Truth and Reconciliation commission in this country.

We Americans have a terrible sense of history. Anything that can improve that is desirable.

And leaving it up to our shallow, corporate media to create and mangle the storyline of our recent history is not good enough. A commission would presumably do a better job of creating that storyline, which the shallow, corporate media would still mangle, but at least the not-brain-dead media could go back to and reference.

My tiny little brain shuts down when I try to imagine the screeching that would accompany such a commission. It would be ugly.

But that's pretty much the point. The people who would cover up, distort, and baffle 'em, they count on a shallow treatment, and a short attention span. Without a dedicated commission or examination, then it's just a matter of time before these same people end up back in positions of power and influence.

We've already got Nixon redux and Iran-Contra redux, all in one putrid package of the Bush administration. Do I really have to accept that, 10, 15, 20 years from now, I will be seeing some of these same names cropping up all over again?

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Operative statement: they are "no longer enemy combatants"
The Pentagon plans to release nearly a third of those held at the prison for terrorism suspects here because they pose no threat to U.S. security, an official of the war crimes tribunal said Monday.

Inoperative statement: "The worst of the worst"
Bush administration officials and military leaders have often justified the extraordinary conditions under which detainees are held at Guantánamo by insisting that the detainees are hardened terrorists. Secretary of Defense Donald H. Rumsfeld famously described the Guantánamo detainees as "the worst of the worst."

And while many administration officials have privately backed away from such claims, they argue that most of the 490 detainees still being held would pose a significant threat to the United States if released. Pentagon spokesmen have generally dismissed the detainees' protestations of innocence as the predictable lies of well-trained militants.
Fired C.I.A. Officer Denies Role in Leak
"When we've said that the C.I.A. was at war with the White House, we were more right than we knew," Mr. Limbaugh said.

Congratulations, Rush, and by extension John Hinderaker. You now have a name to attach to your straw man. And, also, I respect the fact that you are admitting that you were making shit up - that's big of you.

It remains to be seen whether or not McCarthy actually did what she is accused of. And it is certainly still rank speculation about whether or not partisanship was the cause of this leak.

I prefer to think that human rights and American morality were the reasons for the leak. I'm just hopelessly naive that way.

Monday, April 24, 2006

Must be an election year.

Hatin' on the Mexicans.

Hatin' on the gays.

What are you voting for?