Saturday, October 15, 2005

It WAS scripted and it WAS staged - admit it and move on

Look when you tell someone who's going to be on camera or in front of an audience this:

Barber: "Master Sargent Lambardo when you're talking about the president coming to see you in New York, take a little breath before that so you can be talking directly to him."
you are staging/coaching/directing.

And even Barber herself said it was scripted

"But if he gives us a question that is not something that we have scripted, Captain Kennedy you are going to have the mic and that's your chance to impress us all."
Then the "conversation"

THE PRESIDENT: Captain Kennedy?

CAPTAIN KENNEDY: Yes, Mr. President.

THE PRESIDENT: Well, it's good to see you. Thanks. Thanks for taking time out of your busy schedule to allow me to visit with you a little bit. I've got some questions for you here in a minute, but I do want to share some thoughts with you.

First, I want to thank the members of the 42nd Infantry Division and Task Force Liberty for serving our country with such distinction and honor. I want you to know that the mission you are on is vital to achieving peace and to protecting America. One of my most solemn duties, a duty that you have joined me on, is to protect the American people.

And we're facing an enemy that is ruthless and cold-blooded, an enemy that actually has a philosophy, and the philosophy is so opposite of ours, it is the exact opposite of what America stands for. We stand for religious freedom, and freedom to speak, and women's rights, and capacity for people to realize their dreams. They stand for a vision that is -- doesn't believe in freedom, that if you don't agree with their narrow point of view, that you're subject to reprisal.

And so I want to thank you for being a part of this global war. And Iraq is a part of the war, because the enemy understands that a free Iraq will be a blow to their vision and their strategy of spreading dominance throughout the broader Middle East. And so I want to thank you. When you email your families, you tell them how proud the Commander-in-Chief is of their patience and their support, as well.

One of the tactics of the enemy is to shake our will. Part of their strategy is to use the killing of innocent people to get the American government to pull you out of there before the mission is complete. I'm going to assure you of this, that so long as I'm the President, we're never going to back down, we're never going to give in, we'll never accept anything less than total victory. It's important for you to know that; it's important for the enemy to know that, as well.

We got a strategy, and it's a clear strategy. On the one hand, we will hunt down these killers and terrorists and bring them to justice, and train the Iraqi forces to join us in that effort.

The second part of the strategy is a political strategy, based upon the knowledge that you defeat a backward, dark philosophy with one that's hopeful. And that hopeful philosophy is one based upon universal freedom. I'm very impressed that the Iraqi government has continued to work to have a constitution that attracts Sunnis and Shias and Kurds. They've worked hard to get a constitution, and now the people of Iraq are going to get to vote once again, on a constitution, in this case.

And I want to thank you for providing the security necessary for people to exercise their free will. You're part of an historic mission that is laying the foundation for peace. I am convinced that when we look back at this time in history, those who follow us -- whether it be in the armed services or in the political process -- will say, thank goodness the United States of America didn't lose our nerve or will; that we've put in motion something that can't be stopped, and that is the march of freedom.

So I want to thank you for giving me a chance to visit with you. You just got to know the American people are proud of you. You've got tremendous support here at home. And there's nobody more proud of you than I am.

Let me ask you some questions, Captain, if you don't mind. One of the, you know, questions I have is about the pre-election operations, about what you've been doing, and what are the -- what's your strategy, and how do you think it's going for -- to make sure the people have a chance to vote.

By the way, you're in Tikrit, as I understand it, as well. It's kind of an interesting place to be. It's Saddam's old stomping grounds.

CAPTAIN KENNEDY: Good morning, Mr. President, from Tikrit. I'm Captain Brent Kennedy. To my right is Sergeant Major Akeel from the 5th Iraqi Army Division. We're working together here with the Iraqis in Task Force Liberty for the upcoming referendum. We're surging an operation, called Operation Saratoga, that includes the securing of over 1,250 polling sites. We're working right alongside with the Iraqis as they lead the way in securing these sites.

Does this sound like a conversation to you? Or does it more sound like a script that someone is so uncomfortable and nervous with, or even tasked with (these ARE military officiers after all) that they are not going to veer off of it, even to sound conversational?

People sound more conversational at Bush's staged "town hall meetings."

Also why are there only officiers and NCO's in this "conversation?"

The long and the short of it was/is, it was staged, and it was scripted. Can the White House be honest enough to just admit it?


Sources:
NPR
C-Span
White House transcript
Crooks and Liars
NBCs Nightly News: Pans Bush's Troop Photo-Op
Crooks and Liars
Olbermann: Troops Photo-Op - omits much of the President's statements before asking Captain Kennedy a question.
Photo-Op Exposed

Friday, October 14, 2005

MSM proves why the blogging world is so important

Glory Hallelujah! The MSM are now willing to admit publicly, what they and bloggers have known for years; that the White House press events are staged and scripted. With this development the MSM has also proven why the blogging world is so important. Bloggers have had this story first, have reported on it extensively and were not cowed by the administration. Much like the underground newspapers of the 60's and 70's.

Given the power of the blogosphere, especially the blogging left, the right is trying to minimize, control and maybe even destroy blogging. But reading the blogs you can get not only a fuller, fleshed out picture of the President's "conversation" with the troops, and analysis, but also a full understanding of how the MSM has failed. This is true of many topics about the White House and the political party that currently holds power.

What bloggers give to the nation is this depth, differing points of view, feet to the fire reporting and analysis. This is what has long been lacking in this nations MSM, and why many only go to the blogophere for news now.

Here's a sampling:

UPDATED TO ADD: The Moderate Voice Bush "Staged" Event Still Mired In Controversy, Staged Bush Military Photo Op Caught By Reporters: The Nose Grows?, The President's Teleconference Talk With Military From One Who Was There

See also:
O’Reilly Said He Had Trouble Booking Blog Segment, Actually Turned Guests Away
O’Reilly Deceives Guest Into Appearing on Blog Bashing Segment
Play or Pay
Chickens come home to roost... again... & again... & again
Live Journal

Fawell, Nye and Borowitz: Great CBS Roundtable


CBS - roundtable. This collection is almost too good to be true. (You may need to scroll down to "Natural Disasters & Religion")

Likewise is Falwell stating "the myth of global warming." (Smith does cut him off, and he doesn't allow Falwell to rebut Nye.)

Why is it that the majority of the science community says that there is no argument about if there is such a thing as global warming is over. There is global warming, argument over. But a couple of scientist can say "no it aint," and that's who Falwell (and Rush Limbaugh) decide to listen to?

I guess it's that same reason that they have a few scientists out of the majority say that evolution is a theory, so we need to teach the controversy. The only controversy is how this tiny group of dissenting opinions get to dictate policy(ies)

When Deanne Stillman discussed the Creation Evidence Museum, of Stillman, TX she gave everyone a taste of what was in a Q&A for kids about Noah and the flood:
Were humans different before the flood?"
"...They had no diseases, no asthma, no aches and pains...They never got depressed or scared...They could have jogged for miles without even getting tired!"
"Did people back then have to wear sunscreen?"
"No!...Before the flood there was a canopy of water that stretched around the Earth like a huge bubble...It will be like that again."
"...That's so neat!"
Her article was posted October 5, 2005. It is interesting to note that now on Ocotber 14, 2005 that particular lesson is not available. It is on Lesson 14 (you can't get a direct link. So when you are on the site look through the left column for "Creation Exploration (For Kids)"). Lesson 13 pop's up when you click it, Lesson 15 is the feature on the page, even Lesson 10 pops up when clicked.

But you click Lesson 14 and all you get is Lesson 13.
What? That belief or "proof" can't stand up to the glare of public scrutiny?

Well, when I read this I was hit with a feeling of deja vu. "What?" I thought "This crap is still around?" You see 30 years ago my aunt and cousin were involved in a church that believed this. 20 years ago I was able to help my cousin break free when she sought to extricate herself from the nonsense. I tried to show her that this stuff she had been taught was just a pound of manure.

You see if they had no diseases then they would have been living in years upon years of the debris of those who came before them. Why? Because many diseases are also decomposers.

I wish I could read all of their spoutings on this topic. As it is I'm going to go back and do a little more research.

See Also:
http://www.buridansass.com/archives/2005/10/harriet_miers_a.html
If I was a betting person

Is there a difference when liberals or conservatives engage in voter fraud?

Well maybe it's just that liberals get prosecuted.

According to prosecutors, Mora and another defendant filled out multiple voter registration forms using fraudulent or duplicate information. Both worked for Acorn, a liberal-leaning group that was the focus of the I-Team investigation into voter registration fraud last fall.

The investigation found Acorn workers were paid based on the number of people they registered to vote, or in many cases, how many completed voter registration forms they submitted to the organization.

Prosecutors believe Mora's sole motivation was money, and was not an attempt to manipulate the outcome of the 2004 election in any way.

Thursday, October 13, 2005

You've just entered the Twilight Zone

Medical paperwork is a world of co-payments and co-insurers, deductibles, exclusions and contracted fees. Nothing is as it seems: patients receive statements that often do not reflect what is actually owed; telephone calls to customer service agents are at best time-consuming and at worst fruitless. The explanations of benefits that insurers send out - known as E.O.B.'s - are filled with unintelligible codes.

The system is so impenetrable that it mystifies even the most knowledgeable.

"I'm the president's senior adviser on health information technology, and when I get an E.O.B. for my 4-year-old's care, I can't figure out what happened, or what I'm supposed to do," said Dr. David Brailer, National Coordinator for Health Information Technology, whose office is in the Department of Health and Human Services. "I can't figure out what care it was related to or who did what."

Dr. Blackford Middleton, a professor at Harvard Medical School with special training in health services research, said he did not fare much better than Dr. Brailer.

"I understand the words of diagnoses and procedures," he said. "But codes? No. Or how things are paid or not paid? I don't understand that."

Dr. Brailer said he often used an analogy to describe the current state of medical billing.

"Suppose you walk into a restaurant," he said, "and you don't get a menu, you don't get any choice of what food you'll eat, they don't tell you what it is when they're serving it to you, they don't tell you what it's going to cost."
NY Times

As if it wasn't scary enough out there.

(hat tip to Prometheus 6)

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

When will the left cry for and demand their "Parental Rights?"

I have to admit that over the past 2 years my feelings toward Christians has taken a direct hit. I know it's totally due to the Evangelical Christian lack of respect for other faiths and other peoples, and how they sometimes deceive to get to their ends (I despised the Taliban but they were somewhat right. The "Jesus" film that Curry and Mercer were showing is a evangelism conversion tool. Curry and Mercer were deceptive and dishonest in what they were doing. )

I now carefully read through any charity's website that I am thinking of giving to, to make sure it isn't Christian. If it is, I don't give. Yes I know there are a lot of Christian charities out there who do their good work as a service to mankind, and do not proselytize. But since one can never be sure, especially with deceptive practices, I give to nothing that's Christian. It also bother's me greatly that the American Red Cross is asking FEMA to reimburse religious charities for their work in Hurricane Katrina and Rita.

I don't want my federal tax dollars going to Operation Blessing, or anything like that that puts tracks into it's relief hand outs. If we Muslim's did anything like that we'd be handed our heads as trying to "take over" America. Why should my tax dollars similarly go to supporting another religion's proselytization?

Like wise I am very unhappy about the abortion debate, and unhappier still with American Muslim leaders. In the rush to become a voting block they left several of our religious beliefs affecting social policy outside in the cold. One of those stands left freezing in the cold is that of abortion.

Muslim's believe that only a human being has a soul, and that a human fetus is not imbued with a soul by God until after it's 3rd trimester ends. Therefore we believe that abortion in the first trimester is okay because it is not yet human but animal. We also believe that abortion in self-defense (abortion to protect the life of the mother) is a right But American Muslim leaders, mostly men, haven't even touched that discussion. It seems that they are willing to wait for the extreme right to make all abortion illegal before we even go there.

But really, I say to the religious right, "KEEP YOUR RELIGION OFF MY BODY!" I have no desire to force my religion upon you, please do not force yours on me.

But the thing that really brought this to the floor today was agape press's "Tracks for Halloween" (hat tip to Crooks & Liars and World o' Crap) . When Cly sent me this link I felt my blood beginning to boil again. How dare they.

To be straight (Cly is right there too) they are doing an end run around a parent's right to decide what faith or no faith to bring their children up in. Let's be clear and use the language they've used to challenge what they perceive as governmental interference in their families. They have used the term "Parental Rights" to gain a lot of head way into respecting their choices and their values. But this is an end run around the parental rights of non-Christian's. This is again saying, "We demand you respect how we choose to raise our children, But we will disrespect your rights as parents to raise yours."

There are Muslim children who trick-or-treat, just like their are Jewish children, Pagan children, Hindu children, Sikh children, Atheist children etc. etc. etc. How much disrespect are these parents going to tolerate before and until they start hoisting the same banner and use the same language to protect their children?

What will it take? A Scientology track in the candy haul of an evangelical youngster?

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

Play or Pay

A while back when Dentene and I were arguing over his post I made a point of saying that the reasons the MSM in this country was cowed to the current administration was the use of "Play or Pay." "Ask us no hard questions, do not investigate, let us lead the interview and burn up your precious time with our same staid presentation. If you don't you will have no more access, we will make trouble for you where you work." etc. etc.

Play with us, follow our rules or you will pay.

We have often asked "Where are the Woodward’s and Bernstein's? Why isn't the MSM asking the questions we want asked? Why do we have to look to the media in other countries to get information?" etc. etc. etc.

Well if Carole Coleman’s "interview" with the president is any indication of how the MSM is being kept control of, then it's worse than I thought. I think many have missed not only what the implications for American MSM have been, but how significant her experience was in explaining why our MSM seems to have become gutless wonders. That is, until Hurricane Katrina.

The majority of the Irish public, as far as I could tell, was angry with Bush and did not want to hear a cosy fireside chat in the middle of the most disputed war since Vietnam. Instead of the kid-glove start, I would get down to business.

. . .

had just been admonished by the president of the United States and now I was turning cartwheels in order to get the interview on air. As I dashed past a waste bin, I had a fleeting urge to throw in the tapes and run home instead.

. . .

"You were given an opportunity to interview the leader of the free world and you blew it,” she began.

I was beginning to feel as if I might be dreaming. I had naively believed the American president was referred to as the “leader of the free world” only in an unofficial tongue-in-cheek sort of way by outsiders, and not among his closest staff.

“You were more vicious than any of the White House press corps or even some of them up on Capitol Hill . . .The president leads the interview,” she said.

“I don’t agree,” I replied, my initial worry now turning to frustration. “It’s the journalist’s job to lead the interview.”

It was suggested that perhaps I could edit the tapes to take out the interruptions, but I made it clear that this would not be possible.

As the conversation progressed, I learnt that I might find it difficult to secure further co-operation from the White House. A man’s voice then came on the line. Colby, I assumed. “And, it goes without saying, you can forget about the interview with Laura Bush.”

It was suggested that perhaps I could edit the tapes to take out the interruptions, but I made it clear that this would not be possible.

As the conversation progressed, I learnt that I might find it difficult to secure further co-operation from the White House. A man’s voice then came on the line. Colby, I assumed. “And, it goes without saying, you can forget about the interview with Laura Bush.”
And indeed the White House logged an official complaint with the Irish Embassy.

If they do this for a foreign reporter, how would/do they treat one of ours? A "Play or Pay" memo probably was sent to all the MSM in the last 5 years, with intimidation about the consequences. Indeed look at the outing of Plame, because someone in the media (her husband) didn't play along. This White House plays for keeps.

But you'd never know it looking at the conservative blogs. Taken from
The Conservative Voice
A few of Al’s Wednesday speech-rants included quotes from avowed communist Walter Lippman, a brief dissertation on the subject of “the refeudalization of the public sphere” (as explained by German philosopher Jurgen Habermas) toward Gore’s real goal—the idiotic yet subversive argument toward bringing back the “Fairness Doctrine”. Note: The Fairness Doctrine (which was not the least bit “fair”) forced newspapers, Radio and television stations to seek out opposing viewpoints on every controversial issue. The Left effectively used this to its advantage. If a conservative made a statement on an issue, the Left demanded equal time. However, as today, if a leftist voiced a statement, he or she would say their comments were “mainstream” and that the “Fairness Doctrine” didn’t apply. The 1987 case Meredith Corp. v. FCC settled the dispute. It resulted in the courts declaring that the doctrine was not mandated by Congress. Therefore, the FCC did not have to continue to enforce it. Subsequently, the FCC dissolved it. Conservative talk-show hosts are winning on Radio. Al doesn’t like it.

Gore even felt compelled to bash not only President Bush but, Jeff Gannon (AKA James Guckert) when he spewed forth in rage: “The present executive branch has made it a practice to try and control and intimidate news organizations: from PBS to CBS to Newsweek. They placed a former male escort in the White House press pool to pose as a reporter and then called upon him to give the president a hand at crucial moments!” Yep! Only leftist reporters should be heard—‘eh Al? Then Al reverted to one of his standard lines against Republicans in general, when he spouted: “And every day they unleash squadrons of digital brownshirts to harass and hector any journalist who is critical of the President!” Gee, Al. It’s actually the other way around. It’s the ostensible “reporters” who unmercifully harass President Bush. Note: I guess Al has been too busy trying to get his own cable network up and running or he would have heard NBC ‘journalist’ David Gregory regularly attempting to eviscerate President Bush and any and all members of his administration. Either that or Al’s been hanging out with the hemp crowd again.
Given what Ms. Coleman experienced, and that all the questions she asked were submitted in advance, it is hard to see how reporters have been able to "harass" the president. Even in one on one interviews the president seeks to control the situation, and unfortunately the press has let him.

Many "old timers" in the news biz say that this started when the network news organizations stopped being run by newsmen (and women) and started being run by bean counters and those in entertainment. Newspapers had to follow suit to stay alive. Even Time and Newsweek are no where near the magazines they were in the 40s, 50's, 60s and 70s (Go to a university library that keeps these gems as bound periodicals in their stacks. It's quite enlightening.

But really it is time the gloves come off for the fourth estate to be the other check and balance it's supposed to be.

FoxNews isn't ashamed to be unabashedly conservative in it's reporting and commentaries. Why is CNN so ashamed to be the other side of the coin? Fairness? The need to promote both sides and let the viewer decide. (Fox doesn't care about that). Fox and Limbaugh both claim that they are the balance to the liberal media, but for that to be true then the MSM must be liberal, not quasi conservative. And not play deaf, dumb and blind to what is going on.

They have the resources to play clips from Hans Blixx when Rumsfield says that everyone thought Saddam had WMD. If the media cannot be or will not be the keeper of records, then all we have is what the White House wants us to believe.

Woodward and Bernstien didn't stop when the pressure was on, and when they lost access, they continued. Cronkite didn't continue to frame the Vietnam in the way the White House wanted after he traveled to Nam shortly after Tet. So when will the new generation of reporters stand up and fill these shoes? Afterall, why did they get into journalism in the first place?

The Interview

http://www.whitehouse.gov/news/releases/2004/06/20040625-2.html
http://www.washingtonmonthly.com/archives/individual/2004_06/004222.php
http://atrios.blogspot.com/2004_06_20_atrios_archive.html#108825764687097446

Ordering Pizza in the year 2010

I received this email from my husband. It's one of those "forwards" that goes through office email.

Make sure your speakers are turned up.
http://www.adcritic.com/interactive/view.php?id=5927

This would be funny if it weren't so scary. and possible.

Monday, October 10, 2005

If I was a betting person

Well I just heard it, and I knew it was coming. Pat Robertson tied the Tsunami, Katrina and the earthquake in Pakistan to the beginnings of the end times, "like a woman in the beginnings of labor." And he says it's going to get worse.

But poor Guatemala escaped being lumped into his "new order" predictions. hmmm I guess their hurricane and mudslides burying whole towns just doesn't cut it.

I could have laid money on what he was going to say. I wonder if any bookies did.

"Are you beginning to get the message?" says Pat

Yeah, we should take better care of our earth, reduce green house emissions, and try and cope the best we can with the damage we've done. Oh and further, like crap, plate-tectonics happen.

But really Pat, and I don't like to be vulgar, you do seem like your on your way to an orgasm over all of this. Or maybe you were just flush from rapture practice.

Sunday, October 09, 2005

Earthquake and Ramadan

For the past 24 hour, or so, I have come to the computer to write about my feelings about the earthquake, Ramadan, and being both a Muslim and an American. Everytime I write something I delete it, it's too heavy, or too sweet and it is never just right. Last night I called my family in Pakistan. Rawalpindi to be exact, near Islamabad. I heard my friends voice, she was stressed, tired and worried. I spoke to her husband and he was the same. They, their house, their family, and the school they run are all fine. Their school was not one that collapsed. Because they are private, their schedule had the children home. But things around them are a shambles. He is a Rotarian, and I asked him if they organized anything yet for relief. The weariness and tension in his voice spoke volumes. No, they hadn't, everything was too confused at that point. Besides it was raining very hard when I called, and it was creating additional problems.

As we have learned from Katrina is it often harder to deal with the distaster when you are on the inside, dealing with all your stress and trauma, then it is when you are fresh from the outside.Today during my fast (it is Ramadan) I spent most of the day thinking about them, about those in Pakistan, and those in NOLA and the gulf coast. It is hard to describe what perspectives the fast brings to you and how you live during the year. How much you look inward to what is important, how much you learn empathy for others, and restraint for your own selfishness. But I can't bring that to this posting, because it's all something one must experience for themselves. All I can do is ask you to give more.