Thursday, May 12, 2005

Now isn't that special...

Iraq, according to the International Drug Control Board, has now become a key artery for smuggling drugs that are grown in Afghanistan. The route through porous borders and a fractured security system takes heroin, speed and marijuana, from their source to the Mediterranean and then into the European marketplace.

So--with all the money and lives we've expended, we've managed to turn Iraq from a harsh dictatorship into a violent hotbed of terrorism and a major drug-trafficking center. I suppose if we drop some more cash and bodies into the fray, we can add civil war to the list.

Tuesday, May 10, 2005

Update about the AWOL MSM story

It's been a couple of days now, and still no MSM story about the British memo about how the Bushies predetermined the attack on Iraq and "fixed the facts" to justify it, all as reported in my previous post, "I'm soliciting suggestions." Several bloggers have commented on the MSM silence, and 88 Congresspersons have jointly authored a letter to the President to inquire about the story (while noting the MSM silence on the subject), but still so far nothing from NYT or WaPo or any of the TV channels, not even cable, so far as I can see.

I just don't get it

With CEOs' salaries skyrocketing (even after all the scandals involving over-compensated corporate managers), it turns out that the workers' pensions will fall to the axe because of United Airlines' bankruptcy reorganization. Result: its defined-benefit plan will pay $800 per month as a pension to an employee who'd been promised $1700.

Isn't it time Americans woke up to what's afoot in America? Apparently not, so long as the same companies that are sucking up our money own the media that doesn't report it.

I'm not making this up

Halliburton's KBR unit, the one that's been all over the news in the last two years for overcharges and missing documents in its Iraq rip-off, was just awarded bonuses of millions of dollars by the Defense Department for its "very good" work.

Sunday, May 08, 2005

This essay from a Louisville, Kentucky, paper, says it all

Louisville, Kentucky? How can a city in a red state have such a blue paper? No, not blue. True blue.

I'm soliciting suggestions

for a word to be applied to that temporal gap between when a story is reported in the foreign press, or on a blog, and when it is finally (if indeed it ever is) picked up by MSM here in the US. This powerful piece of information about Bush's predetermination to attack Iraq and "fix the facts" to justify the invasion lay outside of US news for at least a week until just now, when the Chicago Tribune finally gave it a small half-column. Now, let's see if it gets any further legs or whether it'll be washed away by stories about runaway brides and weird pop singers.

Two questions arise from this news story

in today's NYT.

First, where on Earth does the reporter get the phrase, "fully and freely elected democratic government" in describing Iraq's present set of office-holders? The nation was under occupation and a large segment of the populace boycotted the election because of the Sunnis' outrage at the US presence in the country. That phrase certainly isn't necessary for the story that follows (about the selection of a cabinet) and is clearly the product of the same herd instinct and bias that characterized the reporting of events in Iraq since Bush set his eyes on it. It's an indication, and an obvious one, of how colored the US reporting is on this war, notwithstanding the mea culpa the NYT has previously expressed over just that bias.

Second, if Iraq can have a Human Rights ministry in their government, why can't we?