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The country is "divided" over the Schiavo case?

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What part of 82% of the population sides with Michael Schiavo doesn't the media understand? I can't even believe ABC News just said this. The media has ignored the fact that while this case did provoke a nationwide debate, it provoked a debate in which the country was unified almost more than ever. That's hardly divided. And in fact, it's downright shocking how unified we are on this issue. That lone deserves extensive coverage, but there's more. How about coverage on how Congress and the President could have turned their backs on the will of 82% of the country? Read the rest of this post...

Another open thread

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Beautiful Thursday evening in DC. If I didn't have a cold, I'd be out having a cosmo. Read the rest of this post...

Oh, you have to read this

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Possibly the worst suck up interview of GannonGuckert yet:
I spoke again with Jeff Gannon this week about the Doonesbury story line and other issues pertaining to controversy surrounding him. At best, he is surviving, at worst he's more than a little fed up with being the blog world's piñata boy....

Gannon's mood turned pretty dark when I asked him about all the postings in the blog universe. "Gabe, I'm not going to respond directly to the most hurtful and blatantly wrong things said about me because I won't give credence to any of it. These people have an agenda to destroy me any way they can and I am amazed at the theories and stories people are posting."

Gannon may have a chance to set the blog world straight on a larger stage because, in a strange twist of fate, he is scheduled to be a panelist discussing bloggers and their impact at the National Press Club next week.

Gannon says there is a growing chorus of people who feel his invitation to participate should be canceled, but Gannon finds that the epitome of hypocrisy. "It's OK for Wonkette to be there but not me," says Gannon incredulously. "I was never a White House plant, I've been ripped to shreds by bloggers, and now they want to deny me a chance to say anything about it in the very heart of free speech and freedom of the press, the National Press Club. Mind-boggling."

While Gannongate has cooled a bit, it still isn't off the national radar gossip screen altogether and may heat up again very soon. "One thing I'd like to make clear Gabe is that I haven't disappeared, as so many have surmised. I'm still right here in Washington if anyone wants to find me. Also, I've had invitations to appear on Real Time with Bill Maher,

Keith Olberman's show on MSNBC and Chris Mathews' show. I'm still deciding which ones I want to do."

Gannon added his interview with Tucker Carlson a couple of weeks ago went OK, but that he sensed a haughty hostility from Carlson throughout their Q and A. As for any new job offers, Gannon says "not at the moment." Is there any "smoking gun" type information Gannon is holding back? He wouldn't answer the question.

Does Jeff Gannon/James Dale Guckert think he has a career and could Get back into the White House daily briefings? "Absolutely, Gabe." Gannon Said defiantly. "Why not?"
1. Blatantly wrong? Like what? You mean you're not a high-priced man-whore named Bulldog? You could have killed that story when I contaced you for a comment before going to press and you refused to respond.
2. Good point about Wonkette. Ass-fucking, and all.
3. As for Bill Maher, Chris Matthews and Keith Olberman. Make our day. Go before a real journalist and see how well you fare.
4. You sensed a haughty hostility from Tucker Carlson? Everyone I know who saw that interview said he kissed your ass. Good God, do you really think that all journalism, good journalism, appropriate journalism, is when people simply parrot YOUR talking points?
5. As for thinking he can walk back into the White House, I just feel sorry the guy.

Oh, and check out this conclusion from the reporter who interviewed him:
And as far as some people wondering why I have shown Jeff Gannon, in their words, " an unusual degree of sympathy", that is the wrong perspective to take on the pieces I've written about Gannon. Too bad not taking the low road indicates to some I'm showing unwarranted objectivity towards Jeff Gannon. Being fair and balanced is what distinguishes bloggers from the reporters.
Yeah, it's amazing with those savvy interview tactics you don't work for a bigger paper. Read the rest of this post...

Dems Approach on Soc. Security Driving Bush Crazy

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The Bush team seems to have misjudged the way the Democrats would respond to the Social Security issue. Based on past history, Bush throws out an idea, like tax cuts or education or gay marriage, and the Democrats respond with a series of policy proposals. Then, they are in the debate with him and he gets most of what he wants.

Not this time. On Social Security, the Democrats are actually being strategic by not proposing anything. That response has the White House in a tizzy. They don't know how to respond.

Yesterday, in Iowa, Bush practically begged the Democrats to act like they used to:
President Bush suggested Wednesday that lawmakers who oppose his proposal for a Social Security overhaul could face political problems as a result.

"To answer the question of the skeptics, we do have a serious problem," Bush said in an interview aired on WMT AM radio here and on WHO NewsRadio in Des Moines. Bush conducted the interview at a local diner, the Spring House Family Restaurant. "Now is the time to fix it, and I think there is a political price for not getting involved in the process."

Bush added: "I think there is a political price for saying, `It's not a problem, I'm going to stay away from the table.'"

In his Social Security travels, Bush has aimed to emphasize the positive and appear the model of bipartisanship - promising Democrats there will be no political retribution for bringing forward any idea to fix the system and arguing that the matter is too important to be the subject of partisan bickering.
The problem he has is that he is hanging out there all by himself on this one. And, the only one paying a political price is Bush. This issue, along with Schiavo, is causing his approval numbers to tank. Even the Reverend Moon's paper had to acknowledge as much.

There really is no reason for the Democrats to play with Bush on this. Besides, when they do, he only screws them anyway. Read the rest of this post...

Open thread

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La la la Read the rest of this post...

Sieg Heil, Washington Post

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Apparently it is now unhealthy in our democracy to criticize our leaders, so says the Washington Post, our new Minister of Propaganda.

A horrifying editorial from the Washington Post about those who criticize the appointment of Paul Wolfowitz to head up the World Bank. "People who care about this institution and its mission -- as many of Mr. Wolfowitz's detractors do -- should think carefully before they damage it by attacking its new boss," the Post opines.

Think carefully? What is that, a threat? You gonna send George Will after us with a poison-tipped umbrella in the middle of the night and smash all our storefront windows? What kind of absurdly unAmerican, McCarthyite kind of comment is that coming from a newspaper, let alone a major paper? That kind of language is dangerous from a government - and we've gotten plenty of it from the Bush administration trying to silence critics, lest they be giving aid and comfort to our enemies - but coming from a newspaper, that is downright pathetic. Has the mainstream media gotten this bad?

This only goes to prove, yet again, how far to the right - fascist right, literally - the Washington Post editorial board has gone. Someone at that paper needs to be fired, or sent to Gitmo where he can fulfill his dreams abusing some dark people. Read the rest of this post...

CNN: Pope Takes a turn for the worse

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CNN has interrupted their non-stop Terri Schiavo coverage to report that the Pope has taken a turn for the worse. Apparently, he has some kind of infection which is causing a high fever. The latest news is the he has received the "last rites." Looks like it is all Pope all the time now.

Boy, this is a big day for cable news. Read the rest of this post...

The National Press Club, right about now...

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Read the rest of this post...

Conservative federal judge blasts Congress over "Terri's Law"

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Gee, sounds like someone isn't in the mood for Tom DeLay to become King of America. Read the rest of this post...

OMG: Reporter, editor, accuse GannonGuckert of plagiarism, outraged that National Press Club would invite him to speak

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That sound you hear is the clock ticking off the seconds before the National Press Club is forced to admit they made a massive mistake. Raw Story has the goods:
A Massachusetts newspaper reporter and her then-editor have accused former White House correspondent 'Jeff Gannon' of plagiarizing an article at which the reporter was the only media witness, RAW STORY has learned.

The alleged plagiarism was discovered by blogger Ron Brynaert, who has tracked other plagiarism by Gannon and various Talon News correspondents at his blog, WhyAreWeBackInIraq.

An Jun. 17, 2003 article published by Jim Guckert, who wrote under the pen name Jeff Gannon, contains numerous identical quotes and turns of phrase to an written by Melissa Beecher for the Waltham Daily News Tribune five days earlier. A comparison of the two articles compiled by Brynaert follows....

Guckert did not respond to two email requests for comment....

"...[W]hen direct quotes are used without attribution it’s not acceptable. Good reporters don’t do that. It’s upsetting to see that a nationally-recognized personality would." [said Melissa Beecher of the Waltham Daily News Tribune, the reporter alleging that GannonGuckert plagiarized her work.]

....[Beecher's then-editor, Richard] Lodge was startled to hear that Guckert would be a panelist at the National Press Club next week.

“He’s not a journalist," Lodge remarked. "And he misrepresented to anyone reading that website that this was his work, and it was not his work, plain and simple.”

....Beecher was similarly aghast that Gannon would be considered for a panel at the Press Club.

“When I attend those conferences and I’ve been to many, you always think the person behind the desk that you’re learning from has qualifications that put them there," Beecher added. "It’s just disturbing that a person who is accused of doing what he did is now teaching the next generation of young reporters. Or fostering a dialogue between professionals in this business.”

“That’s just upsetting to real journalists that someone who does a copy and paste job has that title, or can be in the same circle that a lot of us pay our dues to be in,” she added. “I know reporters who paid their dues for years and years to even be considered as a White House correspondent, never mind making up your own news company and walking in.”
Read the rest of this post...

Tom DeLay threatens judges, lawyers, and Michael Schiavo following Terri Schiavo's death

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From ThinkProgress, our favorite think tank:
DeLay Goes Off The Deep End

DeLay just released this statement:

Mrs. Schiavo’s death is a moral poverty and a legal tragedy. This loss happened because our legal system did not protect the people who need protection most, and that will change. The time will come for the men responsible for this to answer for their behavior, but not today. Today we grieve, we pray, and we hope to God this fate never befalls another. Our thoughts and prayers are with the Schindlers and with Terri Schiavo’s friends in this time of deep sorrow.

Make no mistake about it: Tom DeLay, our Majority Leader, is now threatening judges, doctors and Terri Schiavo’s husband.
Gee, Mr. DeLay, why don't we just give all the crazy people guns and maps to the judges', lawyers', and Michael Schiavo's homes? With the people who have already tried to put hits on the judges and Michael Schiavo, and the recent attacks on judges and their families, are you this much of a moron, or do you really want violence? Read the rest of this post...

National Press Club bans public from GannonGuckert panel discussion

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Gee, embarrassed about something? I know it's been years since we've had hookers on 15th street, but come on guys, we're all grown ups, and we've already seen him naked (just look further on down this page). And does anyone else find it ironic that a panel about whether non-credentialed media (such as bloggers) are journalists is now banning non-credentialed media? And perhaps the biggest irony, under these rules Guckert wouldn't be allowed to attend his own panel! The "old boys" are circling the wagons.

The new description of the panel:
Who is a Journalist?
NPC Professional Event
April 8, 2005 9:30 AM
Open to NPC members and credentialed media only.
Read the rest of this post...

Cheney son-in-law takes position at Homeland Security

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Son-in-law Philip Perry has been nominated for the position of general counsel at Homeland Security. He will join his wife Elizabeth, who works under Condi. Read the rest of this post...

Bush makes statement on Schiavo's Death

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At 11:30 a.m., CNN had Bush on live making a statement on the death of Terri Schiavo. Okay, took him five days to mention the 10 people killed in the Minnesota shooting last week. But, he uses the first opportunity to jump in front of cameras to talk about Schiavo. Never mentions any individual member of the military killed in action, but, boy, he has to mourn Terri by name publicly. Read the rest of this post...

Terri Schiavo Died This Morning

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ABC News reports that Terri Schiavo died this morning. Read the rest of this post...

Well that was fun

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Sorry about that - the blog just fitzed out for several hours. Somehow all the html code got messed up - the < and > parts of the tags changed magically into their computer code counterparts, messing everything up. Very weird. Republishing the blog now - we're back.

Hey, someone out there sent me some code for converting my email address into code so as to help avoid spam. Can you send it again? It too disappeared when the site went weird. Read the rest of this post...

Love Without Borders meets Bigotry Without Borders

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Peace in the Middle East? Hardly, but religious leaders from three faiths all joined together to deliver a united front of hatred in Jerusalem. American wingnut Rev. Leo Giovinetti has been the behind-the-scenes organizer of the group of so-called religious leaders who want to stop the planned WorldPride festival from being held in Jerusalem in August. Read the rest of this post...

Laura the women's right activist

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Uh huh, she's a real lightning bolt. Thank heavens she knows the script and tosses out the classic "democracy" and "freedom" at the right moments. Oh that crazy feminist, she is without a doubt the leading force in the women's rights movement, well known for her, uh, hmmm, well...did you know she is a teacher? Well, OK, at least she taught for two years about twenty years ago.

I don't know if I would be bragging about a five hour stopever that has been in the works for a couple of years but at least she visited Afghanistan, unlike Bushie. Either way, the MSM is lapping up this crap regardless of how irrelevant or staged it all was but that's pretty much what they do best. Read the rest of this post...

GOP positioning next election issue - voter fraud

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Apparently the debate over photo IDs at the voting booth has spread well beyond Georgia and now is going on in Indiana, Wisconsin and probably elsewhere. While I find the debate offensive, I also cannot believe that the Democrats have somehow allowed the GOP to take the upper hand on the election fraud issue. After the last two presidential elections I viewed election fraud as a strong issue to push. There are a lot of Democratic voters who feel like their votes did not count and yet it is the GOP who talks about voter fraud.

Maybe I just need to give it time because Dean only arrived recently but c'mon, this issue should not be controlled by the GOP. Read the rest of this post...

Last open thread until Paris wakes up

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PS I had to post this again, it's just too damn funny. Kudos to Truthout. Follow the link, there are even more.

Read the rest of this post...

Hannity calls Cong. Jim Moran (D-VA) an a-hole, and more

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What a nice Christian boy he is. Read the rest of this post...

GannonGuckert does another interview

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I wouldn't normally link to yet another interview of the same old same old, but this time, in addition to the same old lines over and over again, he does say something new:
LLP: Others say you knew about the beginning of Iraqi Freedom 2 hours before the rest of the public/press knew. Is this true? Please describe the events that occurred surrounding the beginning of the war. Where were you when you found out about it? Who was with you? Who did you report it to? What did you do in the 12 hours following the beginning of the campaign?

JG: One person (Dotty Lynch of CBS) says this and she is wrong. I have good instincts and I detect some professional jealousy here. Was the start of the war a big surprise? Well it was to Terry Moran of ABC who ignored hints from the White House that something "big" was going to happen that night. He went home and his network had to put a producer on the air to cover the most important story of the year.
Ok, that's interesting. How does GG know that the White House was hinting that "something big" was going to happen the night of the war? Did GG receive that hint as well, even though he never got an FBI background check?
Possible Lawsuits

LLP: In published statements, you've indicated you might sue people. Why would you sue? Who would you sue? Could you sue for libel or slander?

JG: My team of lawyers is handling this. Someone needs to be held responsible for the purposeful harm to my reputation based on rumor, innuendo and falsehoods.

LLP: I asked if you could sue for libel or slander specifically-do you feel you have been defamed in print media, televised media?

JG: Yes. My lawyers believe that some of the things published and broadcast about me are actionable. We are currently examining course to pursue, if any

LLP: Since Talon News did not fire you and you are writing a book destined to make money off this scandal, how are you going to demonstrate you lost anything of monetary value?

JG: I'm paying my lawyers to worry about that.
Yawn. The truth is an absolute defense. So what falsehoods is he talking about? And I'd love to see GG finally have to speak under oath where perjury gets you jail time.
LLP: You refused to answer two questions in the last interview because they were "hypothetical." I believe I was asking your opinion-not if they applied to you. Please take this opportunity to share your beliefs, even if it is a hypothetical, on the Republican Party, the Conservatives and any possible issues that are irreconcilable.

Again, none of the questions are hypothetical-you do not have to be gay to answer them.

How would you reconcile homosexuality with conservative beliefs? Do you see a conflict?

JG: I don't see any conflict at all. Conservatives believe in equal rights, not special rights. Radical gay activists have a rigid agenda and demand fealty to it. Liberals do the same thing to Blacks and Hispanics who don't walk in lockstep with the Left.
Equal rights, not special rights. Radical gay activists. Yeah, he's not anti-gay at all. Read the rest of this post...

"Operation Resurrection" - state militia leaders reportedly were ready to "rescue" Terri Schiavo

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Good God. Read the rest of this post...

Open thread

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Obviously, I have press club on the brain. Feel free to chat about other things too. Read the rest of this post...

Jayson Blair not invited to National Press Club but GannonGuckert is?

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Gee, not one, but TWO panels on Jayson Blair, the NYT plagiarist and liar, at the National Press Club, and NOT ONCE was Blair himself invited to speak on those panesl. I guess you only get invited to speak at the National Press Club if you're accused of plagiarism AND you're a man-whore:
SUBJECT: National Press Club holds a discussion on "Preference or Prejudice? Jayson Blair and Minorities in the Newsroom..."

LOCATION: National Press Club, Zenger Room, 14th and F Street NW, Washington, D.C. -- June 30, 2003

PARTICIPANTS: Sandra Birdiett, Wayne State University; Mercedes de Uriarte, University of Texas; Catalina Camia, Asian American Journalists Association and Ruby Baily, Detroit Free Press
And then this second event:
HEADLINE: Scandal Involving Former New York Times Reporter Jayson Blair to be Discussed at National Press Club

News Advisory:

In "When Journalists Lie: Earning Back the Community's Trust," a cooperative effort between the Newseum and the National Press Club's Professional Affairs Committee, panelists will discuss the recent cases of fabrication and plagiarism involving former New York Times reporter Jayson Blair and the issues regarding newsrooms' diversity that this scandal has raised.

Hedrick Smith (moderator), executive producer and correspondent, Hedrick Smith Productions
-- Geneva Overholser, professor, Missouri School of Journalism
-- Jeffrey Dvorkin, ombudsman, National Public Radio
-- Mike Getler, ombudsman, The Washington Post
-- Walter Middlebrook, recruiter, Newsday
-- William McGowan, journalist and author of "Coloring the News: How Political Correctness Has Corrupted American Journalism"
-- Alice Bonner, professor of journalism, University of Maryland

Wednesday, June 4, 6:30 p.m.

National Press Club
Read the rest of this post...

RUMOR: Jeb Bush is calling out the Florida National Guard to get Schiavo

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There's a discussion on a Yahoo bulletin board about rumors that Jeb Bush has called up the Florida National Guard to intervene in the Schiavo case tonight. I wouldn't normally post this, since it's unsubstantiated, but in view of the intense interest in the Schiavo story, and the fact that the Miami Herald reported last week that Jeb Bush sent the authorities to nab Schiavo last Thursday - and it almost ended in a shoot out - Bush has put this issue into play. It's worth a journalist at least investigating, and the way we get it investigated, is to put it out there.

Again, this entire rumor could be bogus. But since Jeb Bush DID send out the troops secretly last week, it's worth just putting this out there.

The discussion is here. Read the rest of this post...

Wonder what the National Press Club's policy is on plagiarists...

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From Atrios.

By the way, what is a journalist?

(This is a real photo from "Bulldog's" escort Web site, live on the Internet. The photo was in a larger section of photos used to entice clients to hire him.) Read the rest of this post...

Open thread

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Have at it Read the rest of this post...

BillMon weighs in on Natl Press Club GannonGuckert fiasco

View Comments | Reddit | Tumblr | Digg | FARK hits the nail on the head. I also love this photo he put up:

This is from

No, Guckert is on the panel for the same reason Wonkette is: anal sex. Jeff gets paid to give it and Anna Marie gets paid to talk about it, and the "bottoms" at the National Press Club get paid to . . . well, you know. How anal sex got to be THE ticket to blogging fame and fortune (instead of a giant bottle of Astroglide) I don't fully understand....

But Anna Marie, at least, can write -- a good three or four paragraphs worth when she really gets going. Guckert, on the other hand, needs to get it through his head that his most valuable job skills are on the other end of his torso. And if he's counting on getting by on his notoriety as the world's only conservative gay prostitute journalist with a blog, he'd better watch out -- that's a niche market that could easily be overrun by competitors. For all Jeff knows, Wonkette's owner may already be trolling the second and third-tier talk show hosts, looking for prospects. Some of the guys in the RNC press office might decide to get in on the action, too. After all, when it comes to blogging -- not to mention anal sex -- the barriers to entry are relatively low. There's always a prettier face . . . or whatever . . . willing to take on the established brand names.

Seriously, though, the fact that we're all talking about this ridiculous panel session only shows that Bill Bennett didn't know the half of it when he wrote The Death of Outrage. The idea that a guy who posted naked pictures of himself pissing on the Internet -- and became famous for it -- would be invited to get up in front of an audience at the National Press Club to discuss journalism and blogging with a woman who has made anal sex her signature riff . . . well, The Death of Shame, Intelligence, Good Taste and Sanity makes a better title.

What's next? An interactive NPC panel session on masturbation? A guest lecture on bestiality and blogging? A press conference by the North American Man Boy Love Association? No, wait, the House isn't in session this week.

I hate to sound like a prude here, but this is one of those moments when I start to think the fundamentalist gizmos might just be right. Maybe these ARE the end times -- or at least that point in the movie Westworld where the Roman robot slaves all run amok and start slaughtering the paying orgiasts . . . Read the rest of this post...

I'm melting, I'm melting... Yes, more on Tom DeLay's imminent self-combustion

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From MSNBC Read the rest of this post...

Best. Photo. Ever.

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I'm not gonna steal it. Just click and check it out. Read the rest of this post...

Open thread

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Anything newsworthy? Read the rest of this post...

Call the Natl Press Club and reserve a spot at the GannonGuckert panel

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It could prove useful for us to have a good number of those spots reserved for folks like us. Call the NPC's phone message hotline at (202) 662-7501 and leave a message saying:

- You're a member of the public attending the "Who Is a Journalist?" event, open to the public, on April 8, 2005
- You want one ticket.
- Your name.
- Your phone number.

They won't call to confirm your reservation. In order to have them call to confirm you got the reservation, call this number: 202.662.7500

It helps if you're in the DC area, but even if you're not, it still could prove useful. More to come :-)

PS As part of our continuing series on "Who is a journalist?"

Read the rest of this post...

Great new ad about Tom DeLay

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From Campaign for America's Future Read the rest of this post...

Spitzer has fresh red meat on Wall Street

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Gee, who would have guessed that AIG was going to come out with bad news? Yes, another improper accounting scandal that is going to keep Eliot Spitzer in the limelight leading up to the NY Gov election. At least somebody out there is taking on this never-ending string of cooked books. Read the rest of this post...

Open thread

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Cool about Dear Mary :-) Read the rest of this post...

"Dear Mary" gets a plug from the NY Times

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Today's NY Times has an article about Mary Cheney's ONE MILLION DOLLAR book deal. Yes, ONE MILLION DOLLARS to tell her "inside" story. John had his take on this whole thing yesterday.

The Times piece did give a plug to

Gay men and lesbians organized "Dear Mary" letter-writing campaigns imploring her to denounce President Bush's call for a constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage.
For the record, "Dear Mary" was organized that campaign was our own John Aravosis. He -- like John Kerry -- was roundly criticized for talking about Mary's so-called private life even though she was a professional lesbian who was also one of the managers of the most homophobic campaigns ever. Now, that private life is worth ONE MILLION DOLLARS. Mary is the new Million Dollar Baby.

While I would never pay money for a book written by Mary Cheney and promoted by Mary Matalin, I will want to know how many times she uses the words "gay" or "lesbian." (I actually heard of one author who managed to write a book about their life and never, ever used those words.) And, it will be fun to see if she acknowledges all her other gay pals on the Bush/Cheney campaign. Read the rest of this post...

EU showing signs of having a spine, prepare for sanctions against Mugabe

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The EU often reminds me of the Dem's because all too often they never really do anything and only give mild lip service. Although they are preparing to level sanctions against Mugabe, I somehow cannot forget their shameless exception just a few years ago when they provided Mugabe with a brief window to come to France for a conference. I also have to wonder what kind of sanctions they can really threaten because Zimbabwe is already pretty much shut off from the EU and US. This is a country that is starving its people to death and which used to be the breadbasket of southern Africa. It's time the EU and US puts pressure on fellow African countries who continue to coddle Mugabe.

I am also glad to see the US speaking out against what is happening there but had to laugh when I read the US State Department complaint about Zimbabwe:
"the manipulation of the media, the lack of independent outside observers, the tilting of the playing field in favor of the government..."
Now why does that all sound familiar? Heck, sounds like a bit of jealousy considering what we have witnessed in recent years. Read the rest of this post...

Like a broken record, thousands more Social Security details lost

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Another loss of personal information with Social Security numbers. With all of the recent losses of personal information such as this case at UC Berkeley and just a week or so ago at Boston College, not to mention the other cases where ths information was mistakenly sold, why are consumers not receiving more protections? It is so easy for a consumer to receive negative credit ratings due to such information being abused, why is it taking so long for us to receive proper protection? Why are organizations not forced to properly protect this data? In this Berkeley case, it was on a laptop computer. What the hell kind of protection is that?

This is a serious problem that has not just popped up out of nowhere. It's been around for a while but just has not received much press coverage. We are probably only seeing action in DC because a few politicians lost their own private information because otherwise they would let consumers hang out forever. Read the rest of this post...

Annan skips past another mess

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So far it is looking likely that Kofi Annan will be able to make it through the food-for-oil scandal just as he managed to move beyond his negligence in Rwanda. I have no doubt whatsoever that the US knew what was happening during the food-for-oil debacle and I would like to see some balance by the MSM, pointing out the Americans who also profited from that program but it is high time Kofi Annan moved on. There is a big difference between being "cleared of any wrongdoing" and insufficient evidence and it is high time we start demanding more from the UN and Annan. The wingnuts in Congress must be loving this because Annan just keeps giving them more and more ammunition to work with these days. If Annan gives a damn about the UN, he ought to step down. Read the rest of this post...

National drug companies accused of gay-bashing

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The largest pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies in the country - among them the major makers of HIV/AIDS drugs - are the main sponsors of an attack ad that slams the ARP over Social Security by attempting to link the AARP to same-sex marriage.

The ads were produced for USA Next, a public advocacy group whose members have been linked to the Swift Boat Veterans for Truth ads that challenged the war record of last November's Democratic presidential nominee Sen. John Kerry....

"I have no reason to believe that this attempt to scapegoat GLBT individuals reflects the views of PhRMA's member companies," said Rep. Frank. "But since PhRMA has helped pay for this advertising by USA Next, we think it is appropriate to ask them to repudiate this act and to take steps to prevent its repetition."

Among the members of PhRMA are 3M Pharmaceuticals, Abbott Laboratories, Bayer Corporation, Biogen. Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals, Bristol-Myers Squibb, Eli Lilly, GE Healthcare, GlaxoSmithKline, Johnson & Johnson, Merck and Procter & Gamble.

"Degrading millions of gay and lesbian families is a sad way for any person or organization to get their message out," said Chuck Wolfe, president & CEO of the Gay & Lesbian Victory Fund and Leadership Institute.
Read the rest of this post...

Open thread

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Heading towards bedtime. Though for some reporters, this is the hour they only begin to start working. Read the rest of this post...

This is just cool

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Spongy tissue found in dinosaur bone. Read the rest of this post...

Because God has a sense of humor

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And yes, this is for real:

Read the rest of this post...

If we were to have protests outside the National Press Club, what would the signs say?

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Just having some fun ruminating here. Get creative. Read the rest of this post...

Open thread

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Have at it Read the rest of this post...

National Press Club refuses to balance GannonGuckert panel discussion

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The National Press Club's latest buffoonery? Adding another blogger, who has nothing to do with the GannonGuckert controversy, to panel and someone from USA Today. Uh, ok. That's nice. Maybe they'll add the Easter Bunny too, since it would have about as much relevance to our concerns as the folks they're adding now.

We stated, quite clearly, that a panel with GannonGuckert about GannonGuckert should have someone on it who was a key player and key blogger dealing with GannonGuckert and who has the opposite point of view of GannonGuckert. That could involve someone from DailyKos, Atrios, World O Crap, AMERICAblog, Media Matters, and I'm sure other blogs that now slip my mind who were all heavily involved in the breaking and covering the controversy.

Why do we ask this? Because, quite clearly, either GannonGuckert is on the panel to talk about his case or he shouldn't be there at all. If he's NOT there to talk about his case and how it relates to blogging and the media, then is he there simply because he's an expert on blogging? No, because he's not a blogger.

(This is a photo from his male escort Web site.)

Is he there as a journalist expert on topics not involving his controversy? No, because he's no such expert, and questionably not even a journalist. He's clearly there to represent his point of view on his controversy. And the National Press Club is clearly not interesting in having anybody represent the other side of this controversy, or they'd have invited someone key to the other side.

Imagine a hypothetical scenario in which the National Press Club has a panel about the 2004 presidential election. They invite the Bush folks, a bunch of journalists and bloggers who have nothing to do with the election, and then they refuse to invite the Kerry folks. The Press Club would have us believe this is okay since the Bush folks, or the unrelated bloggers and journalists would represent the Kerry point of view. The Press Club might even tell us "we're not having the panel to debate WHO SHOULD HAVE WON the 2004 election, we're simply doing it to discuss lots of issues surrounding the election, so it doesn't matter if we have both sides." Right, and in discussing the 2004 election you thought the Bush point of view and the middleman's point of view were both relevant, but didn't think it would be relevant to invite someone representing, and having insight on, the other side of the very issue the entire panel is about.

This isn't about me. They could have invited anyone from any of the blogs I mentioned above - all blogs that were key to covering the GannonGuckert story. Instead, they didn't invite a soul. And to add insult to injury, they actually chose today to invite another blogger to the event - showing that they HAD space to invite someone actually relevant to the GannonGuckert story, they had space to rectify the glaring bias of their panel - but they chose not to.

But hey, the mainstream media never was interested in covering the GannonGuckert story as news, so is it any surprise that they're still not willing to give the story a fair shake now? And they wonder why we don't like them.

For more background on this story... Read the rest of this post...

Falwell's on a ventilator

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CNN is reporting that Jerry Falwell is in critical condition and on a ventilator suffering from viral pneumonia.

Note to the Falwell people: Don't ask Tom DeLay what to do with someone on a ventilator. You might not like the answer. He only helps with feeding tubes. Read the rest of this post...

Jesse Jackson descends on the Schiavo family!

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Just when you thought there was no more room for any more whores, Jesse Jackson steps in. CNN just reported that he's weighing in on behalf of the parents - and get this - they wanted him there because they thought all the religious right reps were skewing the national polls against them. Yeah, so some whore like Jackson is gonna help? Gag me.

And lest we forget:

Jesse Jackson: Gay marriage rights are not civil rights
Christopher Curtis, / Network
Tuesday, February 17, 2004 / 06:50 PM Read the rest of this post...

Poor private Mary Cheney is now writing a half-million dollar book

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Well that was quick. Six months ago she was an innocent private wallflower, now she's hawking her name for half a million bucks.

Gee, mainstream media, didn't we tell you so? Didn't we inform you that in 2002 Mary was selling photo ops at gay Republican fundraisers for $500 a pop (i.e., pay Mary 500 bucks and she'll let you snap a photo with her)? But no, the MSM fell for the "Mary is a private citizen, how DARE you ask any questions about her?" line.

Now we know that what the Cheneys REALLY meant was "how dare you ask any questions about her and not pay half a million bucks first." I guess they always knew what Mary was, they were just haggling over the price.

My favorite line in a second story on the topic is Mary Matalin's incredibly self-loathing comment, so apropros for a book by Mary.
Interviewed in a New York Times article last August about Ms. Cheney, Ms. Matalin was quoted as saying, "There are other reasons to be politically active besides your sexual orientation. That is not her raison d'etre."
Gee, you think?

(PS Next thing you know the GOP will try to make money off of Terri Schiavo. Oh yeah...) Read the rest of this post...

READ THIS: MSM catfight breaks out over National Press Club's "GannonGuckert panel" - Press Club whines, E&P rips them

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The National Press Club is striking back over the growing controversy over their biased GannonGuckert panel they're holding next week. And others are striking back at the Press Club. It's an MSM catfight out there.

As you may recall, the Press Club is holding a panel to talk about the GannonGuckert issue, journalistic credentialing, and the larger issue of blogs vs. mainstream journalism. On that panel, at this point, will be sitting GannonGuckert, sex gossip comedienne Wonkette, DC gossip blogger Garrett Graff (who was the first blogger to get access to the White House briefing room), and John Stanton of Congress Daily.

The left-wing blogosphere is, rightfully, upset that, as usual, the mainstream media wants to hold a panel on political blogging and doesn't invite any political bloggers. Rather, they invite gossip blogs. No that there's anything wrong with gossip blogs - I love Wonkette, and am having breakfast with Garrett next week. But they're gossip blogs. For a panel on gossip journalism, having them represent the entire field would make sense. But...

For a panel discussing the GannonGuckert case and the difference between serious political blogging and serious political mainstream journalism, it might be nice to have some serious political bloggers on the panel - not to mention, a blogger who actually was key to the GannonGuckert expose (be that Media Matters, Kos, Atrios, World O Crap, AMERICAblog, whatever). And what about Editor & Publisher or, two of the ONLY mainstream media outlets that fairly and continually covered this story? Why aren't THEY the MSM media rep on this panel?

Anyway, the Press Club folks are getting snippy now. From Poynter:
From JONATHAN D. SALANT, vice president, National Press Club: Regarding Joe Strupp's story about Jeff Gannon: Is Editor and Publisher suggesting that every time the National Press Club gets a newsworthy figure to appear on one of our panels, we consider that person a journalist? Is E&P suggesting that we should not invite controversial figures to appear at the Club and be questioned by reporters? How else should we read Strupp's story? Funny, I don't recall E&P questioning whether inviting a politician to an NPC luncheon means we endorse his or her views. People get invited to speak at the Club, whether a luncheon, a newsmaker event or a forum, because they are newsworthy. Also: Considering the event has been on the Press Club home page for weeks, how can some blogger "first report" the event, as Strupp wrote. Or does E&P now define a scoop as being able to read a publicly available announcement on a journalism organization's home page?
But now it gets good. Editor & Publisher editor Greg Mitchell responds:
Topic: Letters Sent to Romenesko
Date/Time: 3/29/2005 11:40:27 AM
Title: Would female hookers get a press club invite?
Posted By: Jim Romenesko

From GREG MITCHELL, editor, Editor and Publisher: Jonathan Salant asks [below]: "How else to interpret Strupp's article on Gannon?" How's this: Should a non-journalist who has worked as a male escort be invited to speak on a journalism panel at the National Press Club?

Salant would have us believe that Gannon is merely giving a press conference at the club as a "newsworthy" figure, you know, the usual politician or policy maker or author. But actually, he is on a panel discussing journalism and blogging issues. And this "newsworthy" figure has apparently worked as a prostitute, and not just the journalistic variety. Asked on numerous occasions about this, Gannon has refused to confirm or deny. Most mainstream journalists, especially of the conservative variety, continue to treat Gannon as merely an "odd" fellow who posted a few dirty pictures on the Web and asked the president a harmless softball question. I seriously doubt that, if he was a she, Gannon would be treated this way -- or get invited to speak at the Press Club on a journalism panel. Salant should supply any examples of (known) hookers who have previously appeared as speakers at the Press Club, especially as part of journalism panels.
Then the E&P reporter who wrote the story responds as well:
From JOE STRUPP, Editor and Publisher: I'm a bit surprised at Mr. Salant's angry reaction to my article about the National Press Club inviting Jeff Gannon to speak on a panel about journalism and blogging.

I don't know how much fairer or more accurate the story could have been. It included comment from several press club officials, including the organizer of the panel, and Gannon himself, with just one quote from a critic of the decision.

Among the e-mails I have received are several from people who believed we were not tough enough on the club. Perhaps Salant is getting as much negative feedback as we are?
Then there's this FABULOUS response from Paul Lukasiak:
Guckert is not being invited (as are Ed Gramlich, Jane Fonda, and Alice Roosevelt) to answer questions from the press about themselves. Guckert is being presented as an either a journalist or a blogger (and perhaps Mr. Salant could enlighten us as to which category he feels Guckert belongs) who will discuss "whether there is a difference between" bloggers and journalists.

Guckert is not an expert on either blogging or journalism, or the interaction between the two. Guckert is, however, a sex worker who has consistently lied to the journalistic community in the past.
Read the rest of this post...

New edition of is live

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This week's edition is live. I'm hosting. Take a look. Also, PLEASE give us feedback. My friend Dan, who is running things, really really really wants your feedback. You guys gave some great advice that first week, and I think, personally, the show looks a whole lot better today than it did 3 weeks ago. But it's still new, and will needs lots of tweaks, and time, to find its groove. So please, watch it and post your comments, criticism, etc.

Read the rest of this post...

Schiavo isn't dead yet, and they're already making money off of her

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And religious right leader Lou Sheldon's son is involved.

Call it Schindler's list. From the NYT:
The parents of Terri Schiavo have authorized a conservative direct-mailing firm to sell a list of their financial supporters, making it likely that thousands of strangers moved by her plight will receive a steady stream of solicitations from anti-abortion and conservative groups....

Pamela Hennessy, an unpaid spokeswoman for the Schindlers, said she was initially appalled when she learned of the list's existence.

"It is possibly the most distasteful thing I have ever seen," Ms. Hennessy said. "Everybody is making a buck off of her."

Ms. Hennessy, who operates the Schindlers' Web site,, said the family had not released any of the names or e-mail addresses gathered there. "Obviously these people are enterprising, and they are taking advantage of this very desperate father," she said.
Then you get this great quote from the father of direct mail, GOP fundraising guru Richard Viguerie:
"I think it sounds a little unusual right now because of the situation where she is in the process of dying," said Richard Viguerie, another major conservative direct-mail operator. "If you came across this information six months or a year from now, I don't think you would give it too much thought."
Well no shit Shirlock. That's the point. If you did it six months, it's politics. If you do it right now while she's dying it suggests to some that you're an opportunistic money-hungry jerk. Read the rest of this post...

Open thread

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Rob is back! :-) Read the rest of this post...

Question: How much is the Internet REALLY changing politics?

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I've been a little AWOL, busy with work of late, but I think this might be a place with some similarity. So I'm in Chicago for the Word of Mouth Marketing Association conference. As a blogger in the political space (as well as an advertising executive), what we do here on AMERICAblog is in essence Word of Mouth Politics. The first speaker presented two visions of how marketing can mature away from disruptive, one way ads to a more two way conversation like we do here discussing politics. We went through the last election to a disappointing defeat. I think that we can all agree that the Left was far more organized than the Right when it came to blogging and word of mouth politics.

But we didn't win.

Despite how much we hate it, paid advertising works. Direct mail works. Telemarketing works. If you buy enough ads, you can move the polling meter. If you call enough people, you can increase turnout. So I pose a question to you all - will this always be so? Will we come to a day when paid advertising in politics diminishes in favor of Internet enabled two-way politicking (like Dean), or are we always going to be stuck watching the same ad over and over again and hanging up on telemarketers each political season? (Though I still get a kick out of the new AARP ad with the house being torn down around the owner!) Read the rest of this post...

Read Krugman's Column today

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This is a must read. Paul Krugman's column in the NY Times today delves in to the impact the far religious right is having on our day-to-day lives. Krugman's column uses the current Schiavo case, invokes DeLay, brings in education and medicine. It's all on target, but this is the quote that struck me:

And the future seems all too likely to bring more intimidation in the name of God and more political intervention that undermines the rule of law.
You might expect to see that kind of language describing an acknowledged theocracy like Iran, but Krugman is talking about the United States. Now, that is very scary. Read the rest of this post...

Oops, finally an open thread

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Sorry, I was busy taping DemsTV, then ran to dinner with a friend. Read the rest of this post...

Anyone have some concrete answers?

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Someone just posted a great coment:
Serious question here ---

I have seen the reference a few times similiar to:

"And anyone who doesn't see parallels - quite ironically, considering the target of this smear - to the early years of Nazi Germany, is deluding themselves"

I don't remember a lot of the specifics, and would like to read up about this, to see for my own educations the parallels.

Does anyone have any recommendations? A web site to read or a book to get about the rise of the Nazi's in pre WW2 Germany.
Read the rest of this post...

Open thread

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America's Taliban wants to know:
Are you, or have you ever been, a member of the American Muslim community?
Read the rest of this post...

Why do silly Muslim-Americans think they're REAL Americans?

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From the religious right:
...An author and terrorism expert hopes his new book will be a wake-up call to all Americans. Investigative journalist Paul Sperry claims Washington, DC, has allowed radical Muslims to penetrate the U.S. military, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the Department of Homeland Security. Sperry is a media fellow at the Hoover Institution. His book is called Infiltration: How Muslim Spies and Subversives Have Penetrated Washington. The author believes political correctness has allowed Muslims to gain access to all of the major U.S. security agencies. "They've penetrated our institutions, but we have not penetrated theirs -- and that is a scary proposition," he says. "This book is a wake-up call to Americans across the country. We've been played for suckers about this Islamic threat. We've been lulled into a false sense of security." Sperry says his book will make readers "hustle-proof," providing them with "cold, hard, politically incorrect facts and truths you have not heard since 9-11, and you deserve to hear without the PC spin out of Washington." Another area of concern Sperry points out is America's prison system, which he says has become the top recruiting ground for al Qaeda. And now, the author warns, terrorist recruiters have worked their way into U.S. public schools as well.
First they came for the gays... And anyone who doesn't see parallels - quite ironically, considering the target of this smear - to the early years of Nazi Germany, is deluding themselves. It's time the American Muslim community started making some friends on the left, with gay groups, civil rights groups, lefty bloggers, and others. You're not just "next" - you're now. Read the rest of this post...

Good, let them draft YOUR sons

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The religious right is upset that apparently there might be growing pressure to open the military up to more recruits, women, gays, etc. Hey, with this administration in power, you can keep the military exclusively for the straight men for all I care. There's a draft coming, and nothing would make me happier than to let the children of the religious right lead the way into a series of needless and poorly-planned wars while my buddies and I sip cosmos at the beach.
...A retired U.S. Marine officer and former Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense says America's armed services are not like the civilian world, where everyone should be given an equal opportunity to participate. In fact, he contends, there are thousands of reasons why the military uses the phrase "selective service." As the U.S. armed forces continue to try to win the war against Islamofascism abroad, the Pentagon is continuing to deal with what some critics view as the liberal social engineering agenda in Washington, DC. But despite what many of the equality proponents protest, Colonel (Ret.) Ronald Ray points out that there is no inherent right to serve in the military, and many things can disqualify people from eligibility to serve. For example, he notes, "Today if you have three speeding tickets, they view that as an indication of your lack of subordination. They can keep you out of the Marine Corps. And obviously you don't have blind pilots, obviously you don't have disabilities -- flat feet, hernia." Although equal opportunity may work well in academia and in terms of civilian employment, the colonel asserts, "in the military, all service is selective service -- even the draft was called the 'Selective Service Act.' There is no right to serve your country in peacetime or in war time." The military has standards, Ray adds, and in a time of war, he feels they should go up rather than down.
Read the rest of this post...

Open thread

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Well, the anger is growing over this National Press Club farce. Stay tuned. Chat away about whatever you like. Read the rest of this post...

CORRECTION: The National Press Club *IS* a big MSM whore

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UPDATE: E&P now reports that GannonGuckert thinks he's on the panel as a blogger!
Gannon told E&P he "thinks it is a good opportunity for me to speak to issues related to bloggers." He also added that he was, "trying to stay out there where people can see me."

E&P has now confirmed it.

It's the National Press Club itself that is hosting Jeff Gannon and Wonkette as either mainstream journalists or serious political bloggers (as we had reported earlier today).

Gannon, of course, is neither, and the same goes for Wonkette. He's a male prostitute who parroted GOP press releases, and she writes a humor blog about sex in politics that focuses mainly on ass-fucking jokes. Neither of them is a serious political journalist (and I don't believe Wonkette, whose site I love, even claims to be), and most certainly neither of them is your first choice for a panel about how serious MSM journalism differs from serious BLOG journalism.

Oh, but it gets better.

Now the Press Club says the panel is REALLY about (in contrast to what they SAY it's about on their own Web site) looking at the Gannon issue and how it reflects on journalism:
"The panel came together because we wanted to discuss some issues that came about from the Gannon case," said Mike Madden, a Gannett News Service reporter and a member of the Press Club's Professional Affairs committee, which is organizing the free event. "So we thought, 'why not try to get him?'"
Uh huh. So you invite Gannon, a woman who jokes about butt-fucking on her blog (and we do love her butt-fucking jokes, but again, how this has to do with a serious discussion on Gannon's credentials, color me confused), and someone from Congress Daily.

Not a single actual journalist-blogger is even on the panel that will be discussing blogging-journalism, and most certainly not anyone representing the "other" side of the GannonGuckert credential issue.

Look who's on the panel:
1. Gannon, who thinks he's an acceptable journalist.
2. Wonkette, who thinks we should err on the side of accepting him as a real journalist, per her own quotes to Howard Kurtz in the Wash Post, and
3. Then there's Congress Daily, whose sister publication, the Hotline, wrote a scathing editorial against our role in the GannonGuckert story.
So, the august National Press Club is holding a panel on the issues surrounding the GannonGuckert story and the only person they invite who was actually involved in the story is GannonGuckert himself.

AND EVEN BETTER, the Press Club invites 3 sources - ALL OF WHOM have already said that GG is a-okay as a journalist. Has anyone at the National Press Club taken Journalism 101? Or don't mainstream journalists even bother to pretend anymore about seeming fair and accurate when discussing progressive political blogs and politics?

National Press Club = Big. Fat. Media. Whore.

Who do you have to sleep with at the Press Club to get a one-sided panel like that?

Read the rest of this post...

Open thread

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More DemsTV taping tonight... Read the rest of this post...

National Press Club is the MSM's latest whore (this is a GannonGuckert story)

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UPDATE: Someone just noted that it is possible this event isn't being hosted by the Press Club, but rather by another organization that is simply renting out the Press Club. We're investigating - stay tuned.

There's an upcoming panel at the National Press Club about the differences between bloggers and journalists and they invite GannonGuckert to be on the panel as, what? He's not a blogger - his so-called "blog" launched a mere 3 weeks ago, and it's hardly much of a blog. And he's most certainly not a journalist, even by the National Press Club's own definition on their Web site:
"You may qualify for Active membership if you fit into one of the following groups:

Work as a:

Reporter, editor, writer, publisher....

For a publication, news service, broadcast outlet or news Internet site that is:...
  • Regularly issued
  • Supported by advertising or paid subscriptions or published or funded by a non-profit organization Operated with editorial independence from any political, governmental, commercial or special interest
  • Not a house organ of any organization or movement"
So what is GG even doing on the panel? The other blogger invited is Wonkette, who, for the record, I adore, but who isn't a political/journalist blogger at all - she's a humorist, and that's great, but to put her opposite John Stanton of Congress Daily seems a bit inappropriate (not to mention, I can't wait till she starts talking about butt-fucking).

And in any case, what is GannonGuckert doing there at all? Like he's an expert on the difference between blogging and journalism? How so? He thinks journalism means parroting press releases and transcripts. As for blogging, again, he started a so-called blog 3 weeks ago and now he's representative of all bloggers? Is he even a blogger at all? Some standards the Press Club has there. They couldn't even get any REAL political bloggers on the panel? Did they even try?

But we really shouldn't be surprised, this is part of a larger ongoing trend, from the LA Times to the Brookings Institution, where bloggers and blogging are distilled and belittled to their most extreme fringe elements - a sex humorist (who again, we love) and a male hooker who isn't even a blogger or journalist at all. Neither is representative of political journalist blogging.

Yet again, the mainstream media is all about selling tickets and belittling the competition rather than addressing a topic seriously. Wonkette sells sex, and sex sells. And GannonGuckert, well, he's literally a whore, so res ipsa loquitor.

Stay tuned as we investigate who the actual sponsor is of this whore-fest. Read the rest of this post...

Sex Offenders for Terri Schiavo

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Gee, the Asscociated Press screws up again. Read the rest of this post...

Wall Street Journal slams Tom DeLay

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So long, farewell, la la la la goodbye... (I'm too groggy to look up, well, you know, that German phrase).

From the DCCC, quoting the WSJ:
Whether Mr. DeLay violated the small print of House Ethics or campaign-finance rules is thus largely beside the point. His real fault lies in betraying the broader set of principles that brought him into office, and which, if he continues as before, sooner or later will sweep him out.
Yikes. And this right after his Terri Schiavo grandstanding. That man is toast. Read the rest of this post...

Ok, I got up late - YOU try doing four hours of radio...

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Ok, I'm alive. Read the rest of this post...

Monday Morning Open Thread

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Starting the week... Read the rest of this post...

Why we need to hold Republicans AND Democrats accountable

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From David Sirota: is so important for progressives to not only go after the GOP when they ignore average Americans, but also hold those who undercut the Democratic Party accountable. Doing that is GOOD for the party, and the progressive cause in general. Because when these wavering lawmakers are held accountable, we can hope for a day that they don't undercut the party, the party starts winning these battles, and the progressive cause is advanced.
Read the rest of this post...

Open thread

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Back in DC. Getting ready for the week. Read the rest of this post...

Michigan preparing to let doctors choose NOT to treat gays

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Maybe we should call Dr. DeLay? Read the rest of this post...

Open Thread

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What's new? Read the rest of this post...

Open thread - and a request for some help

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UPDATE: You guys were tremendously generous, thank you! No more donations are necessary, Michael now has enough to get the new computer (fortunately he already has the monitor, keyboard, etc., so all he needs is a tower). I think Michael was a bit shocked when I just called him - he didn't know I/we were doing this. This was terribly nice of you guys, thank you :-) JOHN

I'm heading back to DC in a few hours. Fellow AMERICAblog blogger Michael in NYC had a computer meltdown last night and is pretty much screwed - it's dead. Michael wasn't really budgeting for buying a new computer right now, so I have a favor to ask. For the next few days, any donations you make to AMERICAblog will instead go towards helping Michael get a new computer, so he can get back to blogging (and working - he's a freelance writer, so no computer means death). So please, if the spirit moves you, make a donation with the "Make a Donation" link at the top of the page via PayPal, and I'll pass 100% of the money along to Michael. He doesn't know I'm doing this, and won't for a while since he has no computer to find out!

Thanks as always, and Happy Easter to any non-orthodox Christians out there. JOHN
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Now that Jeb Bush is in trouble, suddenly the GOP supports the rule of law

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GOP congressman Curt Weldon was just on THIS WEEK with Stephanopoulos, and he started defending Jeb Bush. Jeb is under attack from Terri Schiavo's family for not helping save Schiavo in these final days. Weldon said that he's not sure Jeb has the power under Florida law to do anything to help.

Oh really? Suddenly "the law" matters to pro-Schiavo republicans? Funny just a week ago they had no problem passing a new "law" to GIVE THEM the power to do something. Now suddenly they're not so thrilled about using Congress to help out. Just a few days ago, Jeb even tried, reportedly, to send in the troops to nab Schiavo. Why not do it again? If this is truly a matter of life and death, to hell with the law, right? I mean, that's what the republicans and their religious right buddies have been telling us for a week now.

And what about President Bush? Where is he? He can send in the National Guard or the troops to get Terri Schiavo. Sure, it would be akin to declaring martial law, but hey, this is the culture of life we're talking about, and anything goes with this administration so long as their heart was in the right place. If this is about the evil activist judges (or "inactivist judges," as Michael in NYC calls them) breaking the law and refusing to save a poor woman who's being murdered, how can Jeb and George now refuse to stop it?

Sounds to me like Jeb and George took a look at the polls and are now getting cold feet. Apparently, the culture of polling means more to them than the culture of life. Read the rest of this post...

Terri Schiavo's father pulled the plug on his own mother?

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That's what the Guardian says:
But, given the vehemence with which he has been fighting to prolong Terri's life, it is a little surprising to learn that Robert decided to turn off the life-support system for his mother. She was 79 at the time, and had been ill with pneumonia for a week, when her kidneys gave out. "I can remember like yesterday the doctors said she had a good life. I asked, 'If you put her on a ventilator does she have a chance of surviving, of coming out of this thing?'" Robert says. "I was very angry with God because I didn't want to make those decisions."
Note these additional quotes in the article:
"People are being executed every day. I don't mean by the law. I mean executed by being starved to death - mainly the elderly, and people with Alzheimer's," says Robert. "There is a big, dark secret out there."

His other daughter, Suzanne Carr, who is five years younger than Terri, is more expansive. "This whole notion of doing away with a group of people who don't contribute to society or who can't feed themselves or who are expensive to maintain, that is bizarre, that is crazy," she says. "You might as well put down handicapped people."
I still say, if feeding tube = starvation, then ventilator = suffocation. Spare me the "one is murder and the other is humane." I don't mean to criticize the parents, they're obviously beyond themselves with remorse over their daughter's condition, but this entire affair is about extreme emotions and not logic. Read the rest of this post...

W's Week

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This week started on such a seemingly high note for W. With great drama, he flew back to DC from Texas to sign the Schiavo Bill. The Bushies thought they had a real winner. (And we all know how he hates to interrupt his vacation's down on the ranch. In August 2001, he stayed there even after learning Al Qaeda was going to attack in the US.)

But let's review what's happened since then:
CBS News reports that 82% of Americans oppose the intervention of Congress and Bush in the Schiavo case;

On Monday, a school shooting in Minnesota killed 10 people -- the worst school shooting since Columbine. Bush makes no comment on those deaths for days, invoking much criticism. Associated Press put it like this:
Some American Indians have complained that Bush did not respond publicly to the shooting for four days. Just hours after the shootings at Colorado's Columbine High School that left 15 dead, then-President Clinton publicly expressed his condolences.

Bush's delayed reaction was in contrast to his swift intervention in the Terri Schiavo case. The president interrupted his vacation and hurried to Washington on Sunday to sign legislation allowing federal courts to consider the case of the brain-damaged Florida woman;

Bush's approval numbers are dropping fast in every single poll. CBS has it the approval rating at 43%. MyDD has the breakdown of all the polls;

The top domestic priority for Bush is dismantling Social Security. Despite months of campaigning for his Social Security agenda, we learn, via AP, from Senator Charles Grassley (R-IA), who chairs the Finance Committee that it's not going to happen. According to Grassley, "I think it's very difficult for me to say today that we'll present a bill to the president." Grassley's comments makes it highly unlikely Congress will follow Bush's lead on the issue.

His brother, Jeb, has gone from hero to scapegoat in the Schiavo situation. Today's New York Times reports:
Governor Bush, who has said he has done all he believes he can under Florida law to prolong Ms. Schiavo's life, has become a particular target of the protesters' scorn in recent days. Some advisers to the Schindler family were openly hostile to him on Saturday.
Popularity dropping, policy failing....things are looking ugly for the White House these days.

Let's see how Bush and Rove are going to change the subject. If they stick to their tried and true pattern, we'll be at Code Orange...or in another war very soon.

UPDATE: Today's Washington Post has a piece by Peter Baker titled "Bush's Back-and-Forth Reflects Rift in Party." My favorite paragraphs:
Polls show the vast majority of Americans, including conservatives and evangelical Christians, disapprove of the decision by Bush and Congress to get involved in the Schiavo matter. And more worrying for the White House, those polls have also shown a significant drop in Bush's overall approval ratings.

"It's been a very sticky issue for the president," said Stephen Moore, a Bush ally and president of the Free Enterprise Fund, which promotes limited government. "I think no matter what course he took, he was going to come under criticism. I personally believe Bush would have been better off not intervening at all."

The case came at a time when Bush was struggling to sell his plan to overhaul Social Security. "This is the second bad thing to happen to him this year, Social Security being the first," said Andrew Kohut, executive director of the Pew Research Center for the People and the Press. "We've had a week that I don't think they can count on advancing their agenda."
Read the rest of this post...

Open Thread

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It's all Read the rest of this post...

DeLay pulled the plug on his own father

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Culture of life, my ass. And I love how his spokesman says the circumstances were different. Really? DeLay's dad had a ventilator and Schiavo had a feeding tube, the spokesman said. Oh, so you mean rather than starving him to death like Terri, DeLay simply chose to suffocate his father to death. Oh yeah, much nicer option. His father was alive and he chose to let him die. But by DeLay's own words, he chose to kill his own father. Wonder how many other Senators who didn't speak up against this legislation have parents or relatives that they murdered (to use their language)? Read the rest of this post...

GOP Theocracy in Ohio

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Jim Dao has a fascinating, and somewhat frightening, piece in the NY Times today about the Ohio Restoration Project. Apparently, the conservative churches in the state are planning a takeover of the GOP:

Christian conservative leaders from scores of Ohio's fastest growing churches are mounting a campaign to win control of local government posts and Republican organizations, starting with the 2006 governor's race.

In a manifesto that is being circulated among church leaders and on the Internet, the group, which is called the Ohio Restoration Project, is planning to mobilize 2,000 evangelical, Baptist, Pentecostal and Roman Catholic leaders in a network of so-called Patriot Pastors to register half a million new voters, enlist activists, train candidates and endorse conservative causes in the next year.

The initial goal is to elect Secretary of State J. Kenneth Blackwell, a conservative Republican, governor in 2006. The group hopes to build grass-roots organizations in Ohio's 88 counties and take control of local Republican organizations.
So, at least now they are being up front about it. The OH GOP will really be the party of the right wing zealots. The theocracy is no longer theoretical.

I love this passage:

"The establishment of the Ohio Republican Party is out of touch with its base," said Russell Johnson, the pastor of the Fairfield Christian Church and the principal organizer of the project. "It acts as if it lives in Boston, Mass."
Damn, those right wingers love to bash Massachusetts. Even better, though, is the reaction from the GOP leaders in the state:

Republican officials are watching warily. The chairman of the state party, Robert T. Bennett, warned that the decade-long dominance of his party could be jeopardized if it was pushed too far to the right. "This is a party of a big tent," Mr. Bennett said. "The far right cannot elect somebody by itself, any more than somebody from the far left can."
Note to the GOP: To quote from the Bible (I think it's appropriately Biblical) "as ye sow, so shall ye reap." Read the rest of this post...

Open Thread

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I'm in Maine and it is COLD....Chat away... Read the rest of this post...

It's All Jeb's Fault Now

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Yesterday, the NY Times ran a piece that pretty much proclaimed Jeb was a huge beneficiary of the Schiavo politics.

Today, the New York Times has an article with a different take:

Governor Bush, who has become a particular target of the protesters' scorn in recent days, has said that he has done all he can under the law. Advisers to the family were openly hostile to him on Saturday.

"Governor Bush has stopped taking our calls," said Randall Terry, a longtime anti-abortion activist and an adviser to the Schindlers. "But we have not given up hope for a miracle."
We also learn from the Associated Press that according to her father, it's all Jeb's fault (with updated link, thanks Lloydletta):

Bob Schindler also pleaded with Gov. Jeb Bush to intervene by taking temporary custody of their daughter while court challenges are argued.

``With the stroke of his pen, he could stop this,'' Bob Schindler said. ``He's put Terri through a week of hell and my family though a week of hell. I implore him to put a stop to this. He has to stop it. This is judicial homicide.''
So, it's Jeb who is putting them through hell....hmmm....that's not the way this was supposed to play out. Read the rest of this post...

Open thread

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have at it Read the rest of this post...

Please bash a House Democrat for Jesus

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It's the least we can do on Easter weekend.

Seriously, 47 House Democrats shamelessly voted for that ridiculous Terri Schiavo legislation last weekend, the one that let the Congress enact a legislative coup d'etat and take this issue out of the state courts and throw it into the federal courts in an effort to invalidate the rule of law in America.

47 House Democrats chose to cave on their principles and act like Republicans because they didn't have the balls to stand up for what's right. And what's the result? People like Tom DeLay are running around saying this was a bipartisan effort, and now Republicans are saying that no one can use this issue against them in the next elections since the Dems were on board. From today's Wash Post:
Some Republicans said they do not believe the vote to allow a federal court to examine whether any of Schiavo's constitutional rights had been violated will become a political issue, especially since 47 House Democrats voted for the measure, while 53 voted against....

Democrats struggled with their own internal divisions over whether to join Republicans in urging federal courts to consider the Schiavo case -- or to oppose it as a dangerous legislative overreach. The decision of so many Democrats to support Republican action represented a rare moment of detente between the two otherwise warring parties.

Even House Majority Leader Tom DeLay (R-Tex.), one of the most partisan politicians in Washington, conceded, "There's been incredible cooperation by the Democrats and Republicans." Aides in both parties say a shared concern about the fate of incapacitated people could lead to bipartisan legislation addressing their rights.
And did you check out that last line? The Dems are talking about joining the Republicans in putting through legislation to address THIS ISSUE NATIONWIDE?!

Dont. You. Dare.

It's time to beat the crap out of wimpy DINO-Dems every single time they go spineless. It's time to start waking up our party to the reality that WE are still proud of our beliefs, that WE are willing to fight the Republicans even if far too many Dems in Congress aren't, and that WE aren't going away.

Please check out this vote count from the Schiavo vote, find your local members of Congress, and if they voted for this travesty of justice, for this attempt to undermine the foundation of our entire democracy, send them a note and a phone call beating the bejeesus out of them. If you feel you must be nice, that's fine. But I worked on the Hill, and more often than not, wimps like this don't respond to nice phone calls. They respond to irate constituents. Feel free to go irate.

I'm serious. It's time our party stood for something. And if these conservative Democrat frauds are afraid to be Dems by the light of day, they can get out of the party. Because the candidate we run against them next time WILL stand for something and THAT candidate will win the election. Read the rest of this post...

The Saturday Scandal: Pentagon Refusing To Prosecute 17 Soldiers Implicated in Torture and Death

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Ah, Saturday! A day for relaxation, gardening, going to Ikea with your partner...and burying scandals you're embarrassed about during a slow news cycle.

This week's Saturday Scandal?

The Pentagon is ignoring the recommendations of investigators and refusing to prosecute 17 soldiers involved in the deaths of three prisoners in Iraq and Afghanistan. It's reason? One case seemed fine by them, another one they decided didn't have enough evidence and the third...oh, never mind.

Obviously, Bush is very focused on these torture cases. Want proof? The men in charge of Iraq and Afghanistan at the time got Medals of Honor. The man who helped craft his "torture is cool as long as they don't die" directive is the new Attorney General. And now apparently, even killing them is okay because even if Army investigators say the cases should be prosecuted they'll be let off scott free. Read the rest of this post...

Looking for a gift to give for the person who has everything?

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Why not the Fox Blocker? If only this device could automatically detect wingnut material from the other channels as well, but at least it's a start. Read the rest of this post...

Saturday Morning Open Thread

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Another cold, gray day in away... Read the rest of this post...

F-16 deal with Pakistan to help Texas factory?

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Say it ain't so. Read the rest of this post...

Condi wants to spread more democracy and freedom

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As long as you are in an oil producing region, apparently. Yes of course that's where we have considerable problems but we've been coddling up to that crowd (and still coddling) for so long, call me suspicious. It also plays into the hands of many around the world who wonder why the US fails to do anything significant about problems such as Zimbabwe, a country with no oil though previously the bread-basket of southern Africa. Hmm, bread just won't do so until they find oil, one can guess that Mugabe can continue starving opposition voters leading up to the election without any repercussions from the US. And if they were to find oil, one could see Mugabe as a new friend right after Big Oil signs their contracts.

And the wingnuts wonder why the world fails to buy in to the "freedom and democracy" spin. Read the rest of this post...

Breaking News! Local Police Force Jeb Bush To Back Down: Police Showdown Averted

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Wow. WOW! This is literally out of control. The Miami Herald has numerous sources confirming that Jeb Bush was sending in the troops -- ignoring the rule of law, the Supreme Court and the opinion of the vast majority of Americans -- to in effect delcare martial law and seize Terri Schiavo. (Thanks to blogger Andrew A. Gill for the heads-up on this one.)Think about this. Top far-right religious leaders told Jeb Bush he shouldn't be pushed around by some "piddling judge." Anne Coulter shouted they should send in the National Guard. Silly talk-radio/Fox News rhetoric? Jeb Bush damn near did it. And if the brave men and women of the local police hadn't decided to uphold the law, Bush would have succeeded.

"Hours after a judge ordered that Terri Schiavo was not to be removed from her hospice, a team of state agents were en route to seize her and have her feeding tube reinserted -- but they stopped short when local police told them they would enforce the judge's order, The Herald has learned," reports the Miami Herald.

"Agents of the Florida Department of Law Enforcement told police in Pinellas Park, the small town where Schiavo lies at Hospice Woodside, on Thursday that they were on the way to take her to a hospital to resume her feeding.

"For a brief period, local police, who have officers at the hospice to keep protesters out, prepared for what sources called ``a showdown.''

"In the end, the squad from the FDLE and the Department of Children & Families backed down, apparently concerned about confronting local police outside the hospice," all per the Miami Herald's ground-breaking coverage.

Do we live in some pathetic dictatorship now where judges who don't "cooperate" are threatened and their families are murdered and the rule of law is a joke?

This has nothing to do anymore with what decisions you or I or anyone make at the end of their lives. This has to do with a far-right minority deciding they want to dismantle our form of government, attack the independent judiciary until it is weak, and encourage a governor to send in the troops.

This is outrageous. The mere fact that Jeb Bush could even CONSIDER such a move is outrageous. There need to be Congressional hearings, Bush needs to be censured by the Congress if this proves accurate and a respect for this country's laws needs to be instilled again in our people. This isn't even mob rule, since most Americans think Bush and the Congress and Jeb should BUTT out.

Read the rest of this post...

Open thread

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Jesus. Michael is about to post some absolutely shocking news, at least I think so. When is the media going to do the real story here, namely, that 18% of the population is trying to stage a coup overthrowing the rule of law in this country for their own partisan, religious, extremist agenda? These people are a danger to our democracy. And anyone who thinks it's not time to start talking about the early years of the development of fascism in Europe is deluding themselves. Read the rest of this post...

Afghanistan Becomes A Tragic Failure

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Actually, the front page article in the New York Times had this banal headline: "Pentagon Sees Antidrug Effort In Afghanistan." The story details how the military -- which is loathe to involve itself in fighting the drug war around the world for various reasons -- is now getting intimately involved in Afghanistan.

That bland intro obscures the real and tragic news from one of Bush's crowning "successes." According to the New York Times, the latest harvest of opium and poppy "far exceed even the most alarming predictions." The poppy harvest alone increased 64% in one year. Furthermore, the Defense Dept. has increased by 400% the money it's requesting for this campaign from the year before, from about $60 million to $257 million.

Here's the money quote:

"There is wide consensus in the government and the military and among humanitarian organizations that the drug trade now threatens all of America's goals in Afghanistan," says the NYT.

It's been widely reported that at least one-third of the country is controlled by the Taliban (hey, didn't we destroy them?) or drug lords. Only a few major cities are safely in the hands of Karzai. The UN reports that Afghanistan is now responsible for 87% of the world's opium production. So how exactly is Afghanistan a rousing success in Bush's eyes? Read the rest of this post...

Now Who's Exploiting Terri?

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Exploiting the pain of Terri Schiavo's family (which INCLUDES her husband and parents) has begun. The Traditional Values Coalition -- which spends most of its time attacking the basic civil rights of gays -- is piggybacking on the media firestorm with posts on its website saying "Help Save Terri Schiavo's Life!" How? By donating money to TVC, of course. (Help save her life by making sure the loved ones of gay people are denied entry to their death beds? Huh?)

The Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability -- according to the New York Times -- says exploiting causes peripheral to your work is a no-no. Accusations that cannot be proved -- such as the lies many websites have spread that Michael Schiavo shoved Terri down a flight of stairs, etc. -- would "stretch" the org's requirement that you be truthful. Yeah, it also stretches one of those commandments.

Wanna have some fun? Go to those religious-right websites, find some examples of their breaking these rules, and file a complaint at Go for it! Read the rest of this post...

Religious right hate speech leads to yet another attempt on a judge's life

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Surprise, surprise, surprise. You heard it here first. Who said, what, 3 weeks ago that the religious right's "judicial activism" hate speech was helping create a climate in which judges' very lives could be threatened. Today it happened.
Meanwhile, FBI agents have arrested a North Carolina man on suspicion of soliciting offers over the internet to kill Michael Schiavo and Greer. Richard Alan Meywes of Fairview is accused of offering $250,000 for the killing of Schiavo and another $50,000 for the "the elimination of the judge who ruled against Terry."

Meywes was arrested without incident at his home around 5 p.m. Friday on charges of solicitation of murder and transmission of a threatening communication via interstate commerce, authorities said.

If convicted, Meywes could face up to 15 years in prison and up to $500,000 in fines. He is expected to make an initial court appearance Monday in U.S. District Court in Asheville, North Carolina.

Greer has been under 24-hour protection by two U.S. marshals due to increased threats against his life by those unhappy with his handling of the Schiavo case.

On Thursday, police arrested an Illinois man they said robbed a gun store in Seminole, Florida, as part of an attempt to "rescue Terri Schiavo."

Michael W. Mitchell, 20, faces charges of attempted armed robbery, aggravated assault and criminal mischief, said Marianne Pasha, spokeswoman for the Pinellas County Sheriff's Office.
And had our wonderful progressive groups - you know, the same groups who claim they're worried about this attack on judges and who are worried about who's going to replace Rehnquist on the Supreme Court - had those groups jumped on this issue when I brought it up 3 weeks ago, this would be a rather big "I told you so moment." But those in power in the left are, if anything, predictably adept at missing the chance to prove they're right (or doing anything at all). Why does anyone give any organization on the left a dime? Make them prove their worth, then fund them. Read the rest of this post...

Friday Orchid Blogging

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Brassavola nodosa

My photo, but not my plant :-) These are also called "The Lady of the Night" because they're only fragrant at night in the dark - lights on, scent goes out. It's thought that the flower adapted evolutionarily to attract a night-polinating insect. Or God just made it so.

These are supposedly easy to bloom. Ha! They're easy to grow, yes, and are quite pretty little plants, but some folks like me have a hard time making them flowers. Still they're pretty and worth a try. They like a good deal of sunlight, water them when they get dry. Definitely a beginner orchid, and a good one. Read the rest of this post...

Open Thread

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It's the away... Read the rest of this post...

Is Jeb winning or losing?

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In today's New York Times, Adam Nagourney in a piece titled "In a Polarizing Case, Jeb Bush Cements His Political Stature" sure appears to give the edge in the first primary of 2008 to Jeb Bush.

Gov. Jeb Bush's last-minute intervention in the case of Terri Schiavo, even after the president had ended his own effort to keep her alive, may have so far failed in a legal sense, but it has cemented the religious and social conservative credentials of a man whose political pedigree is huge and whose political future remains a subject of intense speculation.

On one level, the Florida governor's emergence as the most prominent politician still fighting, despite a string of court and legislative defeats, to have a feeding tube reinserted in Ms. Schiavo was very much in keeping with someone who has repeatedly declared a deep religious faith.

Several associates noted that he had been devoutly religious longer than President Bush, and even critics said his efforts - prodding the Florida Legislature and the courts and defying much of the electorate - were rooted in a deep-seated opposition to abortion and euthanasia rather than in political positioning.
Nagourney may have been right when he wrote that piece yesterday, but things are changing rapidly down there in Florida. Today, Jeb may be in some trouble over the case. In an Associated Press article from this afternoon, the entire burden for "saving" Ms. Schiavo appears now to be placed solely on Jeb by her family:

On Thursday, Bush said his powers "are not as expansive as people would want them to be. ... I cannot go beyond what my powers are and I'm not going to do it."

But Paul O'Donnell, a supporter of the parents, contended the governor still has the power to take her into protective custody.

"Bob and Mary are begging Governor Bush to save their daughter on this Good Friday day," O'Donnell, a Franciscan monk, said after Friday's ruling. "Now is the day. Now is the time for the governor to have courage. The governor needs to take action and take action soon. She's dying."
So how Jeb fares in this remains to be seen. The stakes for him continue to be raised. And, the way it looks now, for that hard core base of right wingers, anything short of Jeb breaking down the doors of the hospice to kidnap the poor woman is not enough.

UPDATE: Atrios reports that "Cowardly Jeb" cancelled a Good Friday appearance today. The Press Release from the Christian Defense Coalition is titled "Gov. Bush Cancels Appearance at Good Friday Service for Fear of Facing Schiavo Supporters." Read the rest of this post...

Middle East Leaders: Confederacy of Dunces

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Sad news coming out of the Middle East. With the world focused on its ills like never before and many wanting to believe these dictatorial countries might actually start to respect the rights of their peoples, Arab leaders had a summit meeting and proved yet again that they're not ready for prime time.

"With major Arab leaders either skipping the meeting or snubbing the League altogether, the conference became a forum for personal squabbles. Apparently in a gesture of disdain, Colonel Qaddafi lit up a cigarette as the session began. The leaders competed to keep each other late in efforts at one-upmanship. Some refused to be photographed together," reports the New York Times.

"That dismayed many Arab news organizations. Coverage of the meeting was well below that of previous years, editors said Wednesday. The satellite television channel Al Jazeera dismissed the meeting as "yet another summit" in promotions for its coverage, which was generally critical and unsympathetic."

Mind you, we're still "pressuring" Pakistan, Saudi Arabia and our new buddies Libya to -- you know -- ease up on selling nuclear material and know-how to every rogue nation and supporting terrorists. The winds of change are blowing!

Read the rest of this post...

Why Does The LA Times Hate Christianity?

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Yes, the LA Times is refusing to give equal times to alternate theories of evolution. Today they printed a story claiming that soft tissue was found in the bones of a dinosaur that died some 70,000,000 years ago. There isn't ONE WORD from opposing scientists who would argue that the universe was created some 30,000 years ago and that the bones of dinosaurs were placed there by our Creator to test our faith. Why does the LA Times hate religion? Read the rest of this post...

I want YOUR questions for the new head of the Human Rights Campaign, Interviewing him at 4:15pm EST today

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Consider this your virtual town hall, gay style :-)

Well, you guys were so good with your questions for CNN's Aaron Brown (seriously, they're great, I'm using them), that now I want your questions for the new head of HRC (the largest gay rights lobby) Joe Solmonese. Joe will be our guest at 4:15pm EST today. Post your questions, and the best ones I'll use. You've got till around 1:30, then I'll need to go through these and pick 'em. Thanks. (Though I can review a few during the show too).

Thanks, JOHN Read the rest of this post...

Family Values bread and circus

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Miami Herald:
Louie Adcock, a St. Petersburg lawyer who is a member of a committee that seeks charitable donations, said many people in Pinellas County are upset about the unrelenting protests.

Adcock called the many protesters ''heartless'' for suggesting families of hospice patients were allowing loved ones to be killed.

''These people should be minding their own business,'' he said. ``A lot of these people have come from out of state.''

The hospice volunteer said she hopes those outside will recognize that others inside are trying to deal with their own difficult fates.

''This is their home. In some cases it will be the last home they will ever have,'' she said. ``These people are terminally ill, and if we don't do it right, we don't have a second chance to make it right for them.''
Read the rest of this post...

Social Security Administration's own Web site questions wisdom of private accounts

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Oops Read the rest of this post...

John Stewart on Schiavo

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I haven't seen it yet, but hear it's good. Read the rest of this post...

Questions for Aaron Brown

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As I'd mentioned, I'll be having CNN's Aaron Brown on the show today (for any who haven't heard, I'm hosting Mike Signorile's radio show in NYC today from 2pm to 6pm EST). I'm curious what questions you'd have me ask him. Fire away. Read the rest of this post...

Open Thread

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What's new? Read the rest of this post...

Damned Sarbox

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If you listen to corporate America, all you will hear is whining about all of the faults of Sarbannes-Oxley. Heavens no, accountability demands from the peasants. Investors might think otherwise though after the recent restatement coming from Conagra. Staying in the spirit of corporate restatements, The GAP also will be issuing new numbers. Read the rest of this post...

You have to love British humor

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Brit graffiti artist "Banksy" once again snuck his own art onto museum walls, this time in New York. Banksy was received inspiration when his sister was throwing away some of his art, telling him "it's not like they're going to be hanging it in the Louvre" which was one of his previous targets for hanging his art. Read the rest of this post...