Saturday, July 03, 2004

Welcome to the New Iraq
Please be advised that our menu of options has recently changed. If your town or city does not have electricity, please press "one" now.

Go read the rest, comedy meets tragedy.

Matt Gunn points out some egregious hypocrisy in regards to ABC News and Fahrenheit 9/11
2. Obviously, I have no problem with anybody criticizing Moore or his film, but it's more than a little disingenuous for the political press to make comments like one made in ABC's The Note yesterday morning:

(We gotta say: … with Moore's film, you 'aint seeing the whole truth,. but that's another matter).

Nothing wrong with that statement, but definitely something wrong with the double standard. Could you imagine The Note writing this about a Scott McClellan White House press conference? Or a Dick Cheney speech? Give me the transcript of any McClellan press conference or Cheney speech, and I'll show you a level of evasiveness, dishonesty, and sleight of hand quite similar to Moore at his most irresponsible.

Matt doesn't totally embrace the film, but that aside he makes a great point about the double standard used to judge Moore, then judge Bush and Company. Can anyone imagine a reporter for the major networks asking any of the major cheerleaders in the adminstration if most of what they say isn't just propaganda and spin. Tom Brokaw seems like a nice guy and he has access; how about an interview where he holds up a folder of papers while talking to Bush or Cheney and says, " here's documentation of all the lies and distortions of your administration over the last three years, we would like you to account for them to the American people in honor of Independence Day." It'll never happen. Liberal press my ass.

News Hounds
We watch FOX so you don't have to.

I never watch Faux on a full stomach especially if Bill O'Spinmiester or Sean Hackerty is on.

Via Juan Cole
Quiet Ethnic Cleansing of Shiites by Sunni Jihadis?
A European reader with good Iraq contacts passes along a very interesting but frightening account of severe Sunni-Shiite tensions in the mixed areas around Baghdad.

I have occasionally seen reports in the Arabic press of Muqtada al-Sadr's followers usurping Sunni mosques and attacking Sunnis. Given the hatred of Shiites characteristic of the Sunni jihadi groups and the Salafis or Sunni fundamentalists, it is entirely plausible that they are engaging in the same kind of activities where they are a majority in mixed areas.

No wonder Bush stuck tail firmly between legs declared Iraq a democracy and got the hell outa Dodge two days early.

Wednesday, June 30, 2004

The media flip-flops on Kerry
Once upon a time, not so very long ago, there was a senator named John who found himself on Al Gore's short list of potential running mates.

The campaign press in the summer of 2000 was entranced with John. It tumbled all over itself to describe John as the perfect match for what it saw as the somewhat wooden, robot-like Gore. One newspaper described John as a man with "an easy manner and good looks," a politician whose "charisma [might] rub off on [Gore]," a person who could "bring some charm to the ticket." John's selection, it opined, would signal that Gore "thinks the election will be decided on personality." A television reporter also regarded this John as "charismatic." Another newspaper saw him as "younger and more telegenic than Dick Cheney." Yet a third newspaper called him "handsome," with "a record tailor-made to undermine the standard Republican attack on liberal Democrats."

What a difference 1,460 days make.

The "handsome," "charismatic" candidate who four years ago had an "easy manner," "charm," and a record impregnable to Republican attack has undergone a hideous transmogrification, as described by reporters.

The media, sharks that eat anything that swims, just give them a martini and enough time.

I've always wondered about graphics and their place in the public mind-set. I see bumber stickers and t-shirts I like and some I don't. The ones I don't agree with would never change my mind about an issue and I'm sure the same is true for those people on the other end of the political spectrum. So my perspective was that it was people just being free to express themselves that was the real appeal, with social impact, if any being a side effect. Social Design Notes has a few words on Preaching to the Converted.

Has Bush's War On Terror
Made The World Safer?

4,500 more troops have been sent home through physical or mental illness.

692 named and identified victims of the war on Iraq
March 2004

Civilian deaths in “noble” Iraq mission pass 10,000
Can Bush and his apologists honestly make a moral case for what how they've approached handling Iraq and the fight against terror.

The New and Improved Iraq by Juan Cole
Some 138,000 U.S. troops remain in the country and the U.S. embassy in Baghdad will be the largest in the world, both of which bode ill for any exercise of genuine sovereignty by Prime Minister Iyad Allawi.

The caretaker government faces five key issues, any one of which could be destabilizing