Saturday, August 21, 2004

If oil prices remain high

this economist predicts that the American stock market will suffer a long, slow decline, along with the economy in general, with the middle class suffering under the "tax" that increased gasoline prices imposes on their pocketbooks.

Could it be, could it possibly be?

That after years of display of undiminished timidity in the face of the supreme power of the corporate entities that own them, there may finally have arisen in the media a sense of outrage against this administration? They've let Bush slide past the absence of WMD in Iraq, the absence of any link to al-Qaida, the long series of prevarications and abuses that have driven his administration. But now, maybe, with these false allegations against Kerry's medals in Vietnam, maybe, just maybe, they've sensed what we've always known: That Bush and his minions are evil. Lying slimeballs, monsters, corrupt and base beyond any that our system has so far experienced. Maybe, just maybe, out of a sense of moral outrage--a burst of principle--the media may finally get it, may try at last to redeem the years of ass-kissing solicitude they've given Bush and his cadre of evildoers.

Or maybe not. Remember, they're still owned by Bush's buddies.

Two takes on Iran's latest expression

When a high official in Iran said that pre-emptive strikes were not the sole prerogative of the United States, there are (at least) two possibilities. One, this is what we've reaped from what we've sown; or two, this is precisely what Bush meant to encourage with his agression, so that he can now justify agression against any nation that dares to utter the doctrine.

Depends on who(m) you listen to

The record high price of oil won't cause too much of a ripple in the world or US economy in the long run, or is cataclysmic.

Another lost story

While the news is filled with stories about Kerry's Vietnam war experience, this item--about the Iraqi soccer team and captain taking sharp exception to Bush's use of them to further his campaign, including strong condemnation of American troops occupying their country--barely makes the news.

Friday, August 20, 2004

Eye off the prize

On the eve of the Republican convention, Bush/Rove have managed to deflect the campaign from the truly relevant issues to Kerry's Vietnam war activities. Of course. They're evil geniuses, except for Bush, who's an idiot.

Among the missing issues: Jobs and real income of wage earners. They're in the pits and nobody knows it, except of course those who are experiencing the difficulties. Must we rely merely on their getting out of the house to vote on election day, or will the Kerry folks somehow manage to turn the debate to the real questions that need to be answered?

Thursday, August 19, 2004

Too many brushfires

It's maddening, the number of false or biased reports that are being fed to the public by the mass media; and the stories the public aren't told.

Nowhere is it reported that the British are furious at Bush's administration for "outing" their source of al-Qaida intelligence by issuing an alert, clearly based on the source's information. Americans aren't informed about the undemocratic selection of the national assembly in Iraq, aren't kept abreast of the increasing death toll of US soldiers. They're given no information about the billions of dollars--that's with a "b"--that are unaccounted for from the Iraq reconstruction funds, the latter story carried by Reuters, but nowhere televised on the major broadcast or cable media.

We're inundated with stories about celebrity trials, with "spin" stories about campaign smears, with the latest violence and weather problems.

The dumbing down of America? It may be in large part the fault of Americans themselves. It surely is the fault of the media, too. They've long blamed themselves for this, but have done nothing about it.

Tuesday, August 17, 2004

Talk about a flip-flop

The Pentagon's on-again, off-again sanctioning of KBR, the Halliburton subsidiary, for failure to abide by the massive contracts in Iraq is either a strong showing of graft, or just simple incompetence. Not neither, probably both.

Another reason to abolish the electoral college, unless you're from Montana

Check out this analysis, demonstrating how skewed the system is against the will of the people.

I'm getting suspicious

I regularly check on the status of US military fatalities in Iraq, but somehow it escaped me that seven (yes, seven), American soldiers were killed in action on August 15. The deaths weren't posted by the Department of Defense on a timely basis, so the Casualty Count website only published them piecemeal.
If the deaths had been reported widely, on the day they occurred, there would have been outrage. Recall when five soldiers died from a helicopter crash in April?
Is DOD dribbling out the reports on purpose?

Monday, August 16, 2004

If Kerry should lose the election,

it may very well be because of his consistent hawkishness about Iraq. He's trying to convince "the center" that he's no wus, but in so doing he may lose not only the liberal edge of the Democratic party, but the true conservative/libertarian portion of the opposition, who are outraged by Bush's foreign policy. The website,, is basically libertarian, is alienated by Bush's invasion of Iraq. But Kerry offers no contrary position, and so won't get their votes.

Sunday, August 15, 2004

Nuance over madness

The Republicans have made much of [Kerry's]... record; the Kerry campaign is haunted by replays of the theme song from the old TV show "Flipper." Mr. Bush, however, has a far more dangerous pattern of behavior. On issues from tax cuts to foreign policy, the president tends to stick stubbornly to his original course even when changing events cry out for adaptation. His explanations seem to evolve every day, but his thinking never does.

This is how the NYT put it, in an editorial about Kerry's vote on the Iraq war resolution. I couldn't have said it better myself.