Friday, April 14, 2006

A poem

A night on the town
T says "Woo-hoo"
A bite to eat
Maybe the Bijou

Excuse the rhyme
I'll give it a rest
Have a good time
I wish you the best.

Good Friday and Passover Slackers

I know this is an extreme example of Pot/Kettle/Black but there is a dearth of commentary out there today.

Thursday, April 13, 2006

More on my wordie-ness

Hanson echoing Sowell: words have meaning; why do we bastardize?

Re: Liberal vs. Conservative

It was Reagan who made "liberal" a dirty word. When he won, with the support of the Reagan Dems (Labor being a huge part of that), the liberals became "progressives."

My gripe is that the conservatives are really the liberals in the classic sense of the word.

I know I'm a wordie; I hate that words have become so, so malleable. This drives me nuts.

Now I have to go watch Ann on TV.


Lee R. Raymond retired last year after many years as chairman of Exxon. Like all ex-Exxon employees, he got a generous compensation package. In his case, $398 million.

Two-fer? Big fat "begs the question" in paragraph four.

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

The "1984" analogies

I knew it was only a matter of time before all the "1984", "newspeak", "Big Brother", etc. rhetoric would start making appearences. This from Thom Hartmann (he waits until the 2nd paragraph):

"In the novel 1984 by George Orwell, the way a seemingly democratic president kept his nation in a continual state of repression was by keeping the nation in a constant state of war. Cynics suggest the lesson wasn’t lost on Lyndon Johnson or Richard Nixon, who both, they say, extended the Vietnam war so it coincidentally ran over election cycles, knowing that a wartime President’s party is more likely to be reelected and has more power than a President in peacetime..."

Now, what I love about this article isn't just the whole GWB = 1984 anlaogy or the mention of...drum roll please.....the "military-industrial complex". No, the joy for me is the introduction of a whole new CONSPIRACY THEORY. One that I haven't heard before. And here is the jist of it:

"Four years later, there can be no doubt that Bush/Cheney/Rove and the Republican cabal lied us into invading Iraq. Ginning it up just before the 2002 midterm elections was largely done so Republicans could take back the Senate in 2002 after losing it because of Jim Jeffords' defection. The 2003 attack was timed, we now can see, so Bush would improve his chances to win the White House in the election of 2004.

So, too, it appears that Bush is now ginning up a new war just in time for the 2006 midterm elections, and Karl Rove probably has a 2007 continuing war in mind to help swing the 2008 elections (or postpone them)."

Wow, this is just TOO good.

The linked article makes a reference to the ghost-writer for the Bush autobiography "A Charge to Keep", Mickey Herskowitz and some comments GWB made to him in interviews. For a more detailed look at some very interesting insights of our Dear Leader, read this from Russ Baker. Some juicy tidbits:

* In 2003, Bush's father indicated to him that he disagreed with his son's invasion of Iraq.

* Bush admitted that he failed to fulfill his Vietnam-era domestic National Guard service obligation, but claimed that he had been "excused."

* Bush revealed that after he left his Texas National Guard unit in 1972 under murky circumstances, he never piloted a plane again. That casts doubt on the carefully-choreographed moment of Bush emerging in pilot's garb from a jet on the aircraft carrier USS Abraham Lincoln in 2003 to celebrate "Mission Accomplished" in Iraq. The image, instantly telegraphed around the globe, and subsequent hazy White House statements about his capacity in the cockpit, created the impression that a heroic Bush had played a role in landing the craft.

* Bush described his own business ventures as "floundering" before campaign officials insisted on recasting them in a positive light.

Just more fodder for us on the left. But I'm sure that even if the MSM try to run with this, the neocon spin masters will be out in force.

Btw, LJ (useless Masters comment follows)

Congrats to your favorite golfer. I was rooting for the 46 y.o. Couples but Lefty played a splendid round Sunday.

Re: Loneliness and Yesterday's Economic News

Been trying to figure out how to respond to your Econ post. I honestly believe that economics is NOT difficult. The difficulty arises in all the convoluted ways it is addressed. I honestly think that some economists (and certainly some economics journalists) make it more difficult than need be to show off their smarts. Certainly my professors at UT did so. Some journalists simply may not have the wherewithal to address the issues simply.

I think my best approach will be to just address the issues raised rather than try to address them in the context of the DMN article. (I don't know who the author was and I generally love the DMN but that article was certainly all over the place without much in the way of explanations.)

It's really just about cause and effect. I need to figure out how to express it.

More begging the question

From writers who ought to know better: Cal Thomas, Robert Scheer, and (this one hurts) Peggy Noonan.

Is loneliness just a word?

Do you sometimes get the feeling that you're all alone out there? Wondering where everyone went, where everyone is?

Sometimes I do.....

Liberal vs. Conservative

Since I am on the cutting edge, I was all over this several months ago. Here is another perspective from Democractic Underground. A small sample:

"Liberalism" Then and Now

Consider, for example, what the word-meisters of The Right have done to the word "liberal."Webster's Dictionary gives us this traditional definition of "liberal:"

"From the latin, liberalis - of or pertaining to a freeman. Favoring reform
or progress, as in religion, education, etc.; specifically, favoring political
reforms tending toward democracy and personal freedom for the individual.

However, the right-wing screech merchants of AM radio and cable TV have turned the word "liberal" into an epithet, like a piece of rotten fruit to be hurled at the candidate or political commentator willing to be called a "liberal."

Remember the 2004 GOP ads? "Brie-eating, chardonnay-drinking, latte-sipping, French-speaking, Volvo-driving, New York Times reading, elite liberals." The word connotes "tax and spend," "welfare cheats," bureaucratic interference in "free enterprise," and a weak military. To Ann Coulter, it means nothing less than "treason."

Thus it is no surprise that when pollsters ask the ordinary citizens to describe their political orientation, "conservative" comes out ahead, followed by "moderate," with "liberal" a poor third.And yet, when the same citizens are asked their opinions on Social Security, Medicare, environmental protection, public education, economic justice, racial tolerance, and the separation of church and state, by substantial majorities they endorse the traditional liberal agenda. In short, the American public remains liberal, even though it has been persuaded to despise and reject the word "liberal." And that should be regarded as good news by The Left, for it is the ideology and the program that matter. "Liberal" is merely a word...."