January 23, 2004
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Subj: A Poem: The Traitor
I think you'll enjoy this. Not wanting to run afoul of the Patriot Act, you'll note that no names were ascribed to any individuals...why, I could be talking about anyone.
Subj: Howard Dean
Good morning BuzzFlash:
I am writing about my outrage at the news media and their portrayal of Dr. Dean after the Iowa Caucus! I was delighted to watch Dr. Dean show his excitement, enthusiasm, and his emotions, but once again with have the pundits from CNN, FOX NEWS, CNBC, CHRIS MATTHEW'S, MSNBC, AND OTHER JOURNALISTS SPOUTING OUT THEIR OPINIONS AND CRITICISM OF DR. DEAN! I support Howard Dean and I will continue to support Dr. Dean, but once again the news media is twisting and turning the opinions of the American people to their man George W. Bush! What happened to letting the voters make up their own minds without all this impute by news journalists and media who are only expressing their own views?
Subj: What did Bush *not* say in the SotU Address?
While optimism reigns between the empty ears of GW Bush (BushCo), his handlers (RoveCo in a joint venture with CheneyCorp) and backers (ScrewEarthCo and DrainAllOilNowCorp), the outstanding evidence is that rule-by-negligence is overwhelmingly the state of Our Union today.
Witness, thus, what did not once get mentioned in Tuesday's speech:
The name 'Osama bin Laden'.
How can this be? We're still in Afghanistan (barely mentioned), we went to Iraq 'based on the connection of 9/11 to Al Qaida' (2003 SotU, etc), and we know more terrorist acts by Al Qaida have occurred in the 28 months since 9/11, than occurred in the 8 YEARS prior to 9/11.
Absent from the speech does not imply absence from the minds of those Americans, who were easily persuaded that Chicken Little tells the truth.
"George? Aren't you forgettin' somethin?"
"Oh, yeah: don't worry, 'Merkuns aren't any smarter than me..."
Thanks for being the source,
A BuzzFlash Reader
Subj: I'm a Clark man . . .
I think Clark is the best chance at winning, but I think it real important that New Hampshire democrats support Howard Dean and stop this media frenzy in its tracks. Dean's message is a great one, and it is being lost in the media's desire to make fun of Democrats on the stump…It reminds me of the manufactured furor over the memorial service for Wellstone…completely ignoring the truth in the face of repeating what Repugs want repeated…it is infuriating, and it is time Democrats stand united against the media.
We also need to weekly read the article you posted over framing the argument and be vigilant to not let the debate get away from us...
Subj: Electronic Ballots Threaten Democracy
URGENT: Please become vocal on technologists' concerns about paperless electronic voting and the recent elections that electronic voting has turned into disasters. Fairfax, Virginia, 2003. Palm Beach and Broward Counties, 2004. Which election will fail next because of these machines? November, 2004?
Founded by Stanford University Professor David Dill, VerifiedVoting.org is a non-partisan organization that champions transparent, reliable, and publicly verifiable elections in the United States. Here is our immediate concern: Democracy in the United States is threatened by the rise of electronic voting. Digital ballots offer no assurance that votes are recorded and counted correctly. They offer no method of doing meaningful recounts. Software errors are unavoidable, the opportunities for fraud exist on a greater scale than ever before, and inaccurate results could easily remain undetected.
Join with those who are working for fair and accurate elections in the United States. Visit our website, or call me, for more information.
This is a wonderful testimonial which should be used by the democratic candidates for president. Remind all Americans what made this country great.. It was made on the sweat, toil and tears of the working men and women of America. The Republicans will have us back to the 1930 era when the corporate raiders and ruthless business men ruled our way of life. Thanks to the person who wrote this. He should forward it to Howard Dean's campaign and identify himself so the good doctor can honor him for his words and allow him to remind America what his campaign is about....the survival of our democracy!
Subj: Program-Related Activities
The President assures us that "dozens of weapons of mass destruction-related program activities" have been discovered in Iraq. I don't know what "mass destruction related program activities" are, or what real dangers, if any, they posed, but they do sound sinister and vaguely threatening. So thank god we have a "Preemptive Warrior" like "Bring 'Em On" Bush to lead us from the rear in the "war" on terrorism (and/or terrorism-related-program-activities.)
Albert Clark, NY
Subj: Bush in Roswell, NM today
Do you think he will be visiting the supposed location of where the alien from outer space is held? If the interstellar space ship is there, will they please put Bush and Cheney in it and send them into outer space.
Karen Boerboom/Platteville, WI
Subj: The Next Staged Event
Is anyone else troubled by this little tidbit? The 'resident keeps talking about the inevitability of the next 9-11 event. Is it because they're planning every little detail, including how the media will provide coverage to a "shocked" and "awed" populace to achieve maximum effect?
Would they dare try this again?
A BuzzFlash Reader
Subj: Thom Hartmann on Clear Channel in Grand Rapids
Since I'm from conservative Grand Rapids, I appreciated the link you posted regarding Thom Hartmann's show being broadcast on WTKG at noon, opposite Rush. The Grand Rapids talk radio market is completely conservative, but now, with Hartmann's show, we have one liberal exception. Phil Tower, Program Director for WOOD AM and WTKG here in Grand Rapids, is notoriously conservative, and I'm sure he threw that one show in with the notion that it might bring in more money than the failing Dr. Laura Show.
I have to tell you, when I tuned in at noon today, at the beginning of the show, WTKG ran a disclaimer telling the listeners that the opinions expressed on the Thom Hartmann Show are not those of Clear Channel, WTKG, or members of their staff and management. (So much for all of the praise Tower got for adding ONE liberal to his conservative army of talk show hosts.)
Funny, but I have never ONCE heard any disclaimer preceding the Vulgar Junkie-Pigboy's or the vile and nasty Sean Hannity's broadcasts, or during any other conservative broadcast on either WTKG or WOOD AM.
It is nice to hear the reasonable voice of Thom Hartmann in contrast to the narrow minded spin of all of the other talk show hosts we hear in this area, especially in light of the conservative momentum in West Michigan. Something is happening here, though...people are NOT happy with Bush's policies, the unemployment rate in our area is around 10%, with manufacturing jobs leaving on an almost daily basis. Maybe, just maybe, people are starting to awaken to the possibility of a better future by booting Bush back to Texas.
Republican defense of this infiltration so far seems to be as follows, from the Boston Globe's article:
"There appears to have been no hacking, no stealing, and no violation of any Senate rule," Miranda said. "Stealing assumes a property right and there is no property right to a government document. . . . These documents are not covered under the Senate disclosure rule because they are not official business and, to the extent they were disclosed, they were disclosed inadvertently by negligent [Democratic] staff."I can just see Richard Nixon defending the Watergate breakin and the bugging of Democratic headquarters on the grounds that it was "okay" because Democrats had such a lousy lock on the door.
Speaking of Watergate, it makes me wonder what other computers these guys are infiltrating.....
A Friendly Reader
Subj: CONGRESSMAN MAKES REMARKS AGAINST GAYS
You didn't hear about this ANYWHERE in the news, but Congressman Steve King made some very disgusting comments that were clearly discriminating against homosexuals. Luckily, Iowa Dem. Party Chairman, Gordon Fischer, fired back.
Marcus J. Swift Here's the link: http://www.iowademocrats.org/article.php?story=20031219164807102
Subj: Any moment now...
Bin Laden will be "captured"…they've been tracking him for months, I'm sure…now is a great time to find Bin Laden…it will kill all the press by the Democrats in the primary season, and will kill any anti-Bush sentiment that is clearly rising…and is just far enough away from the election that it won't seem like a dirty trick…and they know they won't be investigated by Congress…Tom DeLay has ensured that with his redistricting fiasco...
I anticipate days rather than months...
Subj: Media based brain washing
Everything Bush says and does is played up on the most positive note possible. When he is criticized it is via another mouth piece such as Democratic party leaders or some unnamed folks called "opponents." This criticisms never include words like outraged, angered, or enraged. No, they simply say, or point out. To further downplay any negativity they use good old peer pressure and back old George up with an opinion poll that some proves the American people are still behind him. If everyone else is behind him, then the popular thing to do is support him, right? Meanwhile, those of us that are capable of thinking for ourselves are left screaming at the TV set.
When Clinton was in office, the exact opposite went on. No matter what he did, it was portrayed as negative. His enemies were offered up as horribly offended moral champions that were fighting to do something about this scourge upon the White House. Even when the polls were showing that the majority of the citizenry were not all that concerned, invariably they would say that a "growing number of Americans" were beginning to find fault. They played the blue dress so much that everyone was sick of it that after a while many got disgusted with Bubba rather than putting the blame where it belonged ... on the media for shoving it down our throats.
When Al Gore ran for President they tried to highlight him as somehow part of that whole thing. As if Gore was supposed to take is boss out on the White House lawn and kick his ass for the honor of Hillary and our nation. When that didn't work so well they started a new mantra ... that Gore was boring. Who among us really thought that was so? Apparently not that many, as he won the popular vote.
Even when Bush after placed in the White House, his failure to protect the country was countered with contentions of how horrible Gore would have handled the situation, and Bush was praised again! They used polls to support that idea as well! Why? What is the point of showing how people have no faith in a guy that isn't even in power? Ugh!
Now even before we have a nominee they are attacking all of them, and polling to prove that George Bush can and will beat him ... who ever he will be. Dean is childish & angry (too energized), Clark changes his mind too much (a GOP traitor?), Kerry is so boring (again), at 50 -- Edwards is too young (too Southern?), Lieberman is too Clintononian (again), Sharpton can't be taken seriously (too black?), and neither can Kucinich (too Green). Never mind that every single one of these men have long and successful records of public service -- none of them are deemed electable for one completely emotional (brain washing) reason or another!!
The Republicans have the power right now, and they are going to use every weapon possible to keep ANY Democrat out of the White House. They have already proven that they will and do use illegal and dishonest means to get what they want. They want us to buy into these lies about our Candidates, and more importantly they want us to keep playing nice like we have been! Make no mistake about it, being good little lemmings is exactly the reaction they want!
A BuzzFlash Reader
The main stream media is not talking about the power grab of this administration, and its danger to democracy.
Declaring a national emergency by ONE man can allow the suspension of our constitution and enact marshall law!
The American public, republicans included, should never want ANY person to have such power, Bush is trying to set up America for a perpetual republican dictatorship. This is basically what was going on in Germany under Hitler, and Iraq with Saddam Hussein except we will have a "rotating" republican dictator, making us think we still have a democracy.
Republicans may think thats ok for now , but in time they will wake up and want to stop this thieft of their freedom, THEN when they see this evil for what it is they will find themselves labeled enemy combatants and no longer loyal [ask Paul O'Neil]. If they don't suck up to Bush or who ever the republicans put in office thru their rigged elections, then THEY will find themselves the recipient of this political machines control and held indefinitely without a lawyer. That will be poetic justice!, unfortunately it will cost us all our democracy and freedom for them to learn this lesson.
Please keep this in the public eye on your show with regular discussions.
loyal fan of democracy
Subj: "Tort Reform" and the "Reformers"
Interesting it is that Governor Bush sued Enterprise-Rent-A-Car and Rick Santorum supported his wife's medical malpractice suit and yet now both clamor for "tort reform". GOP hypocricy at its finest!
As to the actual effect of "tort reform" in Texas:
As is so depressingly usual with these folks of the governing party, words mean little (or the opposite of what is said). "Tort reform" is another attempt to pare away at the rights of the citizens of this country. The benefactors of these "reforms" are the usual suspects: the big contributors to the Republican Party. When Bush announced at the SOTU address, the necessity for controlling medical malpractice suits, it was like seeing a brazen acknowledgement of this relationship, disgustingly enshrined in the State of the Nation speech.
It is now clearly long past the time for Tom Daschle to resign as Minority Leader. His latest surrender completely defies belief. Even though Senate Democrats had the sufficient votes to sustain a filibuster against the final omnibus spending bill that allows the Administration to eliminate overtime protections for eight million workers and allows the FCC to open the door to fewer corporations owning more of the television market, Daschle, incomprehensibly, instead opted not to fight now and to retreat to supposedly "fight another day." Even though a clear victory on behalf of American workers and consumers was within his grasp, he instead elected to unconditionally surrender.
Americans overwhelmingly oppose the Bush Incorporated desire to eliminate overtime pay and allow more concentration of media power in the hands of fewer megalitihic corporations. As a result they placed enormous pressure on their representatives and senators to stop this blatant, corporate giveaway. Fearing repercussions at the ballot box, and thereby demonstrating that representative democracy can at times still work, the House and Senate responded accordingly by overwhelmingly voting to restrict the FCC's right to allow such a sell off of the public airwaves, and they voted to block the implementation of the administration's draconian overtime rules. Yet, in blatant and contemptuous defiance of the will of the people, in the dark of the night and behind closed doors, these provisions were stripped from the final omnibus spending bill by the Republican leadership. Because of subsequent arm twisting by the corporate cheerleader in chief, Junior Bush, efforts to restore the provisions failed in the House. The Senate therefore remained the last best hope to restore these provisions before serious harm is inflicted by their enactment.
The votes existed to block the omnibus spending bill in the Senate until these provisions were restored. On Monday an effort by the Republicans to overturn the filibuster failed when, in a bipartisan vote, a motion to terminate debate failed. However, rather than pressing on at this moment of victory and issuing a full throated, strong demand that these provisions which the American people have adamantly said they wanted be included in the final bill, Mr. Daschle instead elected to settle for a "symbolic" victory of temporarily delaying the measures for TWO WHOLE DAYS. Once more running the white flag of political cowardice up the flagpole, he inexplicably abandoned the filibuster and indicated that he will instead fight for these issues in the future. He vaguely promised to use some obscure parliamentary maneuver in the Senate to attempt to block the implementation of the rules when they are set to go into effect in March; however the likelihood of success of such a maneuver is greatly in doubt and is clearly no substitute for the real and concrete opportunity to block these rules from taking effect right now. His supposed tactical calculation is once more a meaningless hollow gesture that accomplishes nothing, and it will be roundly ignored by the people who counted on Congress carrying out their will. His actions are most assuredly not those of a strong leader.
Mr. Daschle will never learn that there is no such thing as a symbolic victory when dealing with this administration. A symbolic victory does absolutely nothing to stop those workers from losing overtime and does nothing to stop media companies swallowing up others as the quest for absolute monopoly continues. This administration has irrefutably demonstrated that they will ruthlessly pursue their pro-corporate, anti-worker, anti-consumer agenda with a vengeance and stop at nothing to get it made into the law of the land. This was a golden opportunity to stop them in their tracks and show the entirety of the American people that Congressional Democrats listen to the will of the people and will strongly fight every attempt by this administration to worsen their lives. Mr. Daschle has instead once more inexcusably failed to seize the opportunity and press the battle forward.
This should establish once and for all that he is not an effective opposition leader. Leaders do not surrender when victory is in sight. Had George Washington followed Daschle's type of "surrender when winning strategy" it would have been he handing his sword to Cornwallis at Yorktown, and we would have all been sipping Earl Grey tea while toasting the Queen.
Although a new Democratic Administration can institute rule changes to reverse Junior Bush's corporate sellouts, the battle should not have been postponed until January 2005. The American people demanded their Congress take action and stop these measures right now. I therefore submit that although their will was not honored by this act of legislative cowardice, Congress can still redeem itself and people's rapidly dwindling faith in the electoral process. Democrats and principled Republicans can still stand and fight this underhanded thwarting of the people's will by this corporate controlled administration by legislatively overturning the administration rules on overtime and media ownership. Tom Daschle clearly cannot effectively lead this fight and for the good of the nation he must step aside. A latter day George McClellan will not defeat this band of neoconfederate corporados. It is time for a new US Grant to step to the forefront.
Subj: Howie Kurtz
Today I saw the funniest thing ever: Howard Kurtz's " On Media" column in the January 22 Washington Post (http://www.washingtonpost.com), which this morning began with "After months of propping up the dean campaign..."
That's been changed to "MANCHESTER, N.H. -- As if Howard Dean didn't have enough problems after sputtering to a third-place finish in Iowa, the press is starting to question his chances of survival."
In both cases, that's a lie. Howard Kurtz is a liar. Dean's campaign was not "propped up" by the media, but by volunteers who gave him millions of dollars in small donations, making him eligible for federal funds. Dean's foray into large-scale donations started only after he asked his supporters if they approved of that. That's the truth. I know this because his campaign sends me so many damn emails, I could probably tell you the lint content of Dean's bellybutton. Dean only got media coverage after defying the odds that the media had already set. The media is not "starting to question his chances for survival;" the media has been saying he couldn't possibly win since day one.
I am not writing this email because I am some big-time Dean supporter: I am writing this email because I am sick and tired of liars like Howard Kurtz thinking they can get away with lying because they have a perch at the Washington Post and CNN (it's always struck me as a bit ironic that a tried and true member of "big media" does a media criticism column, which is kind of like Mr. Bush's plan for dealing with pollution, in which the polluters voluntarily police themselves).
Don't make me laugh, Howie Kurtz (I've cc-ed him in this email): as anyone who's watched the Dean campaign knows, the press started out with "Dean can't win," then swerved into "maybe dean can win but probably not," back to "Dean can't win."
"Starting to question his chances?" Dude, you haven't so much questioned his chances as said Dean's a dead duck since day one. Talk about your self-fulfilling prophecies.
Last week's columns, attacking Dean on everything EXCEPT his policy positions, were shameful. It is one thing to say "Dean's ideas suck." But all the Washington Post (and the New York Times, etc etc) had to say was "where's his wife," "does he go to church", and other canards over and over and over again. My favorite was Marjorie Williams' editorial in the Washington Post, in which her central argument was " you can't trust Dean to govern, because he's a doctor and you can't trust doctors." (http://www.washingtonpost.com) That's some fine logic there, isn't it? I guess it would have been better if my girlfriend went to a car salesman when it came time to deliver our kid.
I think (I hope) most of my friends know that I'm not a hardcore Dean supporter: I lived in Western Massachusetts about 20 minutes from Vermont for most of his years as governor, and I'm well aware of his record. You can look it up: Dean was fiscally conservative and attacked regularly by Vermont's newspapers as "too conservative." That record has been skewed, BIG TIME, by people like Howard Kurtz. Almost as skewed as Kurtz's claim that "the media" propped up Dean's campaign.
Buddy, if what you all did was "propping up" Dean's campaign, then please, please start propping up George Bush.
I guess all I'm saying here is people like Howard Kurtz need to blow it out their collective bunghole. Oh and here's his email, if you'd like to drop him a line of your own: email@example.com
Sent: Thursday, January 22, 2004 8:50 PM
Subject: Vitello 'Dean in Me' Piece Dennis Elder
Dear Mr. Elder:
After a stolid, middle-aged couple I know who were in Iowa and attended the rally told me that the crowd was so rip-roaring loud that it completely drowned out the last of Dean's speech including "the" yell, I called a friend who is a sound engineer. Vitello and his readers might be interested to know I learned TV crews typically use a number of mikes when covering a venue. By adjusting the levels picked up on the various microphones technicians can rebalance the sound for clarity's sake. Apparently the filtering at the Dean rally was set to eliminate nearly all the audience noise it looked to the home viewers like Dean was standing on a stage, yelling all alone to a small, quiet and attentive group rather than the huge throng of wildly cheering voters and volunteers. Pretty strange. It reminds me of the time Michael Moore won an Oscar and the home viewers could hear the booing but not the cheering.
CLICK HERE FOR PART 2 OF THE JANUARY 23, 2004 BUZZFLASH MAILBAG.
otherwise noted, all original