Sunday, February 20, 2005

This blog is still alive. I've got some a new posts which will be posted soon. In addition to that Brooksbubble will hosting an audioblog series with some of the leading players in the creative commons and free culture movement. So see you soon loyal readers and listeners.


Also this Jeff Gannon/Guckurt story is really amazing. He's feeling the heat now but I think he may be able to start a political consulting firm providing fake news outlets for republican candidates. At Gannon associates we provide you with a highly skilled team of male escorts who know how to frame questions that help achieve your strategic objectives. Just a thought.

Friday, January 28, 2005

no, no, no none of that

Human Rights First is leading the fight against Alberto "Geneva Conventions aren't such a big deal" Gonzales. A vote against Gonzales is profoundly important for a number of reasons. It is certainly a moment of truth for the Democratic party and whether our party's elected officials will hold the line against the corrosion of our country's commitment to due process and human rights (and to their great credit all Democratic members of the Judiciary Committee did just that). If we are to maintain any credibility in the eyes of the world we must not promote anyone complicit in torture. What more can be said. Watch this video from Human Rights First and sign their petition


http://www.humanrightsfirst.org/us_law/etn/video/index.htm

Thursday, January 27, 2005

Dayton on Rice

Well, Condi was confirmed this morning. Of course this is no surprise as we have been repeatedly told over the past several weeks that her confirmation was assured. Completely assured, yet the Republicans were deeply annoyed that the Democrats managed to delay Rice's confirmation and take to the senate floor to debate the merits of her nomination. Watching Barbara Boxer, with her awkward visual aids, lay out Condi's dishonesty and incoherence had a sad quality to it. I was already playing out the Republican attacks on Boxer as being "obstructionist" "bitter" "liberal" for her taking her constitutional role, not to mention the future credibility of the United States, seriously. Boxer wasn't the only one to rise in healthy defiance of Rice's elevation. Byrd, Kennedy and surprisingly, DLC commando Evan Bayh drew a healthy line in the sand. In my view the award for best floor statement goes to Minnesota's Mark Dayton. I'm gonna let him close this post.


SADLY, THE ATTITUDE OF TOO MANY OF MY COLLEAGUES ACROSS THE AISLE IS: OUR PRESIDENT WRONG, WRONG, OR WRONG. THEY DEFEND HIM. THEY PROTECT HIM. AND THEY ALLOW HIS TOP ADMINISTRATION OFFICIALS TO GET AWAY WITH LYING. LYING TO CONGRESS, LYING TO OUR COMMITTEES, AND LYING TO THE AMERICAN PEOPLE. IT'S WRONG. IT'S IMMORAL. IT'S UN-AMERICAN. AND IT HAS TO STOP.
IT STOPS BY NOT PROMOTING TOP ADMINISTRATION OFFICIALS WHO ENGAGE IN THE PRACTICE, WHO HAVE BEEN INSTRUMENTAL IN DECEIVING CONGRESS AND THE AMERICAN PEOPLE, AND REGRETTABLY THAT INCLUDES DR. RICE.
DR. RICE STATED IN A TELEVISION INTERVIEW ON DECEMBER 8, 2002, AS THE ADMINISTRATION WAS LAUNCHING ITS CAMPAIGN TO SCARE THE AMERICAN PEOPLE AND STAMPEDE CONGRESS ABOUT SADDAM HUSSEIN'S SUPPOSEDLY URGENT THREAT TO OUR NATIONAL SECURITY. SHE SHREWDLY INVOKED THE ULTIMATE THREAT THAT HE POSSESSED OR WOULD SOON POSSESS NUCLEAR WEAPONS. SHE SAID THAT DAY -- QUOTE -- "WE DON'T WANT THE SMOKING GUN TO BE A MUSHROOM CLOUD."

He has a great closer.


I DON'T LIKE TO IMPUGN ANYONE'S INTEGRITY, BUT I REALLY DON'T LIKE BEING LIED TO REPEATEDLY, FLAGRANTLY, INTENTIONALLY. IT'S WRONG. IT'S UNDEMOCRATIC, IT'S UN-AMERICAN, AND IT'S DANGEROUS. IT IS VERY, VERY DANGEROUS. AND IT IS OCCURRING FAR TOO FREQUENTLY IN THIS ADMINISTRATION. AND THIS CONGRESS, THIS SENATE MUST DEMAND THAT IT STOP NOW.
MY VOTE AGAINST THIS NOMINATION IS MY STATEMENT THAT THIS ADMINISTRATION'S LYING MUST STOP NOW. I URGE MY COLLEAGUES TO JOIN ME IN THIS DEMAND, DEMOCRATS, REPUBLICANS, INDEPENDENTS; WE ARE ALL, ALL OF US, FIRST AND FOREMOST AMERICANS. WE MUST BE TOLD THE TRUTH, IF WE'RE TO GOVERN OUR COUNTRY AND TO PRESERVE OUR WORLD, AND THAT'S WHY WE MUST VOTE AGAINST THIS NOMINATION.

I would like to thank the honorable gentleman from Minnesota.

Monday, January 24, 2005

talking liberty drilling for tyranny

The words liberty and freedom ran so profusely out of the President's mouth during his inaugural address that it caused me to wonder whether Mr. Bush assigns some sort of magical property to these words. He and his entire cabinet have repeated them often in these post September 11 years we are all familiar with the most memorable including "they hate freedom" and "we are liberators." The administration is so taken with the language of liberation and the neo-con ideology of scud missile induced democracy that even after the horrible results of the war in Iraq some in the administration are still eyeing Iran and North Korea as targets of regime change.


Many critics have pointed out the discrepancies between the rhetoric of democracy and human rights and the Bush record of coddling selected regimes with horrible human rights records; not to mention the on going revelations of torture carried out by American forces in Iraq and Guantanamo Bay. Indeed, brutally beating Iraqi prisoners and establishing close ties with Uzbekistan are hardly Amnesty International actions. As Michael Moore illustrated in Fahrenheit 911 with the footage of a public beheading, our key ally the House Of Saud hardly practices the politics of the enlightenment. Oil is of course a big part of the Saudi story and its fusion of despot governance with astonishing oil revenues is not unique; in fact one would be hard pressed to find a counter example of democratic governance built on a crude pipeline.


This brings us to Bush's energy policy. It is a policy which only deepens our reliance on oil. The consequences of it are obviously deeply detrimental to the environment, but it also has a devastating effect on democracy around the world. Oil entwines our fate with many of the world's most vile regimes, including some that support terrorism. We must consider that the rapid implementation of new energy technologies would not only would have a profound effect on the environment but also and human rights and democratic governance. Bush is talking liberty but drilling for tyranny.

Wednesday, January 19, 2005

busy man lazy blog

I have been unable to blog for the past couple of days. I will resume tommorow

Friday, January 14, 2005

empty

I was in meetings most of day involving a nifty organization called the Valley Arts Project on whose board I sit. I promise a real post tomorrow. Meanwhile take a look at the site

http://www.valleyartsproject.org/

Thursday, January 13, 2005

a few bad apples

From the laptops of Bush's legal advisors to the cells of detention centers the subject of torture keeps coming up. Starting with Symour Hersh's reports on Abu Ghraib and continuing through revelations of detainee abuse at Guantanamo Bay an exceptionally disturbing story is playing out in front of us. A story of seemingly systemic abuse apparently thought to be an appropriate tool in the "War On Terror" by top administration officials. Perhaps most importantly we see a Congress which while airing concerns of such brutality has by and large not seen fit to really do anything about it. As many a more astute observer than I have noted it seems that crazed Republican partisanship and all to common Democrat timidity has made Congresses response to the torture issue sluggish at best.


That's why I wish to pass all of my readers (Elisha, Mom, Dad, handful of other friends) to the invaluable Nat Hentoff's recent piece in the Village Voice on Congress and torture and also to Body and Soul blog for its eloquent denunciation of congress's laziness. After reading these great pieces call your congressional delegation and tell them that you know the torture scandal it is not simply made up of a few "bad apples" and must be fully responded to before the whole barrel rots.

http://www.villagevoice.com/news/0502,hentoff,59889,6.html

http://bodyandsoul.typepad.com/