January 31, 2005
The BuzzFlash Mailbag
The opinions expressed in the Mailbag are not necessarily those of BuzzFlash. Read the BuzzFlash FAQ for info on submitting to the Mailbag.
Subject: Social security
Bush claims there will be a funding crisis
in social security and a cut in benefits;
At what point will the actions of the Bush administration rise to the level of a "gate?" During the Clinton years everything was a "gate" (i.e. travelgate, filegate, etc.) We have gone through 4 years of Bush scandals with none being described as a "gate." The so-called mainsteam "liberal media" has been doing a very poor job, therefore it is up to BuzzFlash to elevate the Bush scandals to the "gate" level which they deserve. From now on you should refer to torturegate, payolagate, etc.
Subject: Letter to BuzzFlash
Subject: Why Christians should not embrace Bush as leader
A BuzzFlash Reader
Subject: Three comments
I'm writing for three reasons. Thank you for always being there, holiday or work day or weekend - Buzz never goes off on vacation.
The second thing was this idea that your headlines are offensive. They're meant to grab attention and often to be funny. Someone doesn't find it funny? Okay, well if my best friend Buzz tells a joke that's not funny, I might not laugh. I might even feel the need to weigh in. But I wouldn't say, "Buzz, get it together, girl! You need to change now!" Buzz is a great friend. I like all your jokes, even the corny ones! Keep the humor.
Third, Matt Carmody was kind enough to share his opinions. Shirley did today. Both are allowed to their opinions and I thank them both for sharing. My own opinion is that things were better under Clinton than they are now; however, I did not then and do not support the welfare reform (aka war on the poor). I'm glad some love Clinton (Bill or Hillary). I don't. I like them. And when either's wrong, I'll say so.
I appreciate that both Matt and Shirley shared their opinions and I hope that we can continue sharing and accepting that some on the left will not feel exactly the same as I do, or Matt does or Shirley does. And though I'm a lifelong Democrat, I hope we'll remember that Buzz has Green readers and others and all are welcome to express their views.
Keep buzzin' Buzz!
"The 1400 Americans killed in Iraq and the 10,000 American casualties are the equivalent of a full division of our Army -- and we only have ten active divisions. "
The above statement is from Senator Kennedy's Jan 27 speech. The dictionary defines the word "decimate" to mean to reduce by 1/10th.
Therefore, the U.S. army has truly, and accurately been "decimated" in Iraq.
Subject: The Iraqi election
The intimidation involved in this election makes what happened
in the Ukraine look like a Board of Education election. The world's
standards on legitimacy for this election will have to be minimized,
if not waived all together. The fact that there are no neutral foreign
observers monitoring the vote is, in itself, proof of this.
In Action -- In BuzzFlash's Mailbag
P.S. I like your headlines way more than the ones I see in the newspapers.
Subject: Republican Platform for the Second Term
1. Economic Plan
a. I got mine, now you go get yours.
2. Health Care Plan
a. Get plenty of rest, eat a balanced diet and exercise. Avoid stress. (And here's a low, low interest loan for some overpriced pharmaceuticals)
b. See 1a
3. Environmental Plan
a. Don't worry. The earth is doomed, so let's use it up as fast as we can.
4. Social Security reform
b. Decreased longevity due to #2
5. Republican Morality
Subject: Still Insufficient: Printer for E-Voting Machines
Diebold has just announced adding a printer to their E-Voting machines ("voter-verifiable printer prototype for use with touch-screen electronic voting machines"). The key "missing" requirement is independently auditable -- not simply having a printed voter receipt. Did the voter's vote really get recorded in the machine as it was printed out? The requirement of independently auditable would allow voters (and 3rd parties) to independently verify a vote made into the total election count and stays in the total election count until the election is certified. We need to keep our eye on the bigger result we want here.
A BuzzFlash Reader
Subject: Barbara Boxer
Why don't we call Barbara's challenge to the administration the
"Boxer Rebellion" and have readers join?
[BuzzFlash Note: It's catchy. Do you think she would like it? Here's an interesting historical note about the first Boxer Rebellion.]
Subject: Rude Pundit on Cheney
I use BuzzFlash often and until today have had nothing but positive to say about the posts; however, Rude Pundit's bit on Cheney is definitely crude, personal, bad taste, and should be removed to maintain your integrity.
Anne in Upstate New York
Subject: Al Quaida suspect arrested in Germany received orders
directly from Bin Laden
Subject: Cheney's inappropriate outfit was no accident
cost of war to Latin America is morally, politically wrong (Miami
A BuzzFlash Reader
Subject: Army Reserves wants my 13 yr old for cannon fodder
The guy on the phone advised that the schools were one of the 3 avenues that would have submitted her information.
The other: self request drivers license application. I asked the school their policy, they said that they don't give out the info. I called the district administrator's office, they are looking into it. I expect to find out what Forsyth County Schools policy is on this. I told them what I thought of this idea of asking my daughter to participate in killing and raping people, and destroying their homes. I don't want my daughter to be a part of that. They must be running out of cannon fodder.
Joyce in NC
Subject: Efforts underway to limit class action suits against corporations--urgent action req'd
President Bush, Sen. Frist and the Republicans are pushing a class
action bill to limit the ability of consumers to have their day
in court. Bush will talk about it next week during his state of
the union address, the bill will be voted on Feb. 3 in Senate Judiciary
Committee without even a hearing on it, and an opportunity for consumers
to testify, and then it is scheduled to be the first bill voted
on in the Senate on Feb. 7. Consumers will have a much harder time
suing large, out of state corporations under this bill because the
Republicans are shutting off the state courts and insisting that
all consumer class action cases go to federal court where the judges
are much more industry friendly.
A BuzzFlash Reader
Subject: Neo-Nazi PNAC GOP Calls for Military Draft
I realize it is Friday night, but here is the letter on the internet
saying the neo-conservative Republican "Project for a New American
Century" (PNAC) wants Congress to increase our troop strength
25,000 per year for several years. The only way to do that when
recruiting and retention are falling sharply is with a military
Just wanted to let you know, Governor Baldacci of Maine is actually a progressive's nightmare. And the piece on his stance on gay civil rights doesn't accurately reflect the real situation. Baldacci is part of a right-wing Washington, DC based cult called 'The Family.' This was reported by a local paper 'The Portland Phoenix.' He is in the process of decimating our Medicaid system, even cutting funding to group homes for people with mental illness (he's specifically targeted that group of people). When asked what people living in group homes should do, given that group home funding is being cut off, his rep responded 'live with friends or neighbors.' The guy's as bad as Bush.
As for gay civil rights, he's saying he won't send it out to referendum, BUT, he'll allow the legislature to do it (which is guaranteed). So he's just taking a safe position for himself politically. He will not stop attempts by the legislature to send it out, which is tantamount to supporting it. He's waffled on gay rights...he's not a great advocate at all. Just wanted to let you know that Baldacci's hardly a hero.
James (LOVE the site!)
I have a perfect prescription for Shirley Smith: Tell her to listen to Mike Malloy on AirAmericaRadio.com Monday through Friday at 7pm Pacific Time. Makes you feel sane again to hear that there are other liberals out there that are sick to death and tired of the traitors in the Democratic Party
Subject: Al Gonzales
Rumor has it that Alberto Gonzales did a stint at the Air Force Academy as a POW torture specialist instructor. Human dog piles, urine, feces, hoods, were standard fare. Sound familiar? Randi Rhodes received a call from a former Cadet who exp'd this vile ordeal. developing ....
[BuzzFlash Note: We only know he did attend the Air Force Academy.]
Subject: In response to Shirley ... St Louis
I encourage BuzzFlash readers to watch "Hotel Rwanda"
before reflecting with great fondness on the Clinton presidency.
I don't know where my head was during the days of the Hutu and Tutsi,
but I know where I am today. And I am both angry at President Clinton
and ashamed of the behavior of the United States (and the UN) during
the time of the genocide in Rwanda. It is incumbent on all of us
who say that we care about (and oppose) the war in Iraq, and care
about the conditions of the third world nations, to hound your representatives
and senators to stop the killings in Sudan.
Subject: Alberto Gonzales bad choice for Attorney General
Subject: Are we falling into a ditch?
IF THE BLIND LEAD THE BLIND, BOTH SHALL FALL INTO THE DITCH! -- Matthew 15:14
The news media is said to be our window to the world. If this window is clouded by dishonesty, how can the American people be expected to make proper judgments? If two wrongs do not make a right, both wrongs should be held accountable for their deception! At a press conference held recently, Mr. Bush's first answer to a question when asked about payola to Armstrong Williams was to say, "Armstrong Williams made a mistake!!" Only when pressed by a reporter did he admit the White House also made a mistake! He also qualified that remark with a statement that he did not know anything about it.
It is quite obvious that Mr. Bush never knows anything when it has to do with admitting fault! Since then, we have learned about two more incidents where this Administration has paid journalists for advancing Bush propaganda! The amount paid to advance Bush policies is not as important as the dishonesty. For a campaign and a Presidency that touts "moral values," paid communications do not back up their pious words! How many times and in how many ways does George W. Bush and his Administration have to be caught red-handed hammering one more nail in their coffin of corruption before the people and/or the Congress take action??!!
Every day we have more reason to question the integrity of George W. Bush and his Cabinet. The whole picture of their misrepresentations and deceit is condemning enough, yet each additional offense is quickly dispensed with by this Administration and the media as easily as swatting a fly off their nose. The trouble is that pesky fly keeps returning! Ignorance of a situation whether it is used in denial by George Bush, or dismissed by the public, who is ill-informed, is dangerous to our Democracy! We cannot afford to continuously jump on the bandwagon of indifference! It is crucial to us and our self-respect, as well as our nation"s respect, that we open our eyes and not be led by the blind.
As for the press, we appreciate their freedom. Justice George
Sutherland said, "A free press stands as one of the great interpreters
between the government and the people. To allow it to be fettered
is to be fettered ourselves!" While the press should not be
shackled, it also should be held responsible for presenting the
truth to the American people and not be influenced by political
gain or bribery!
Subject: Idaho and The Gay Marriage Issue
Idaho is now debating the issue of having the state constitution not only outlaw gay marriage but will not allow civil rights to gays either. No, I am not a homosexual but I do believe in equal rights for all Americans. Please flood their mailboxes with letters from all over the BuzzFlash community. Some of the legislators are concerned about the loss of tourist dollars and their intolerant image. I read in the paper yesterday that it was not until the 1950's that women could even own a business in Idaho without their husband being registered as the legal owner! Unbelievable! Let them know the whole country is watching. The real problems here are wife and child abuse. Kootenai County is number one in the number of meth labs (from yesterday's Idaho Spokesman Review). Only 44 per cent of high school grads here in Idaho go on to higher education (including voc tech.) Is it any wonder there are so many backward thinking citizens? It is a red, red, red, state but they do care about tourism.
Subject: Felon's Voting Rights
I was reading the story on how Republican legislators, and influential Republicans in the state of Florida want Jebba the Hut to give back the voting rights of Felons. Why? His brother that slimy, pencil neck, beady-eyed, awol,war-monger, smirkfaced retard is already in the White House........ Ah...I see.....Jebba the Hut will look good to all Felons which might change their vote from Democratic to Repug when he runs for pRes in 08? Those electoral votes sure would come in handy when the system is rigged once more to let a Bushkavik in control of this sham of a gov't because Jebba the Hut sure wouldn't be doing it because of compassion or the tugging of heart strings.
A Loyal Buzz Fan Forever!
Subject: Social Security -- Private accounts vs. personal accounts
Subject: Making me equal doesn't take anything from you and never
In order to extend equal rights to any group; whether it be voting
rights or marriage rights to women, blacks or gays, it is always
interpreted as somehow taking some of the heterosexual male rights
Subject: an idea
We all know that the Republicans have become very adept at getting their word out to their people. In that vein, I was thinking that since you reach so many people, why can't there be a site on your home page where we can get the word out to our people, e.g., by supplying websites or e-mail addresses of people or organizations to contact with our point of view. We can deluge people just as much as the other side can. Is this possible?
[BuzzFlash Note: We do have links at the bottom of our homepage to media outlets and government offices. These may be helpful at times of "Action Alerts."]
Subject: killing the innocent in Iraq
As I read this article by a Catholic nun, I am almost shaking from the anger I feel towards Bush et al. What will it take to get this country moving on the correct path again? I mourn for us and for our future. What have we as a nation done to this world that we all must share? When will we as a nation wake up to what the rest of the world must think of us?
What the Rest of the World Watched on Inauguration Day (National Catholic Reporter/Common Dreams)
Subject: Be careful what you say
"Sometimes you've got to start a fight to win one." These words, ennobled by Paul Wellstone, are the same words Bush used as a pretext for the invasion of Iraq. There is no moral certainty in the world. Just understand that while you value life, and certain people in high places seem to value it slightly less, be mindful of what you are really saying. If you find words you like, and you still like them after holding them up to the mirror of your reality, fine. But, if you hold your words up to the mirror, and they come back at you as their own evil twin, don't use them.
Paul Wellstone knew that bullying was not an answer, but he said a dumb thing, and you quoted his dumb thing. Now Bush has killed approximately 114,000 borrowing the same dumb quote. Wellstone and Bush were both wrong.
Starting fights leads invariably to unintended consequences. The
most powerful position is that of the peacemaker, who brings a solution
which satisfies both parties who didn't really want to fight in
the first place.
Subject: Halliburton Scurries Mysteriously Out of Iran (Reuters/LA Times)
This is a most disturbing development. If any company might know
the intentions of the Bush administration, it is surely Halliburton,
via the Cheney connection. The company pulls out now, waiting for
the inevitable "spread of freedom" (read: invasion) envisioned by
"Our Leader." Then, after American troops are on the ground there,
Halliburton goes back in under no-bid contracts to service the troops,
just like in Iraq. Disgusting. And, where will it end?
I hear from Bush and from many who post how noble and godly our
mission is in Iraq. Being a Christian I have gone to my Bible and
to the life of me I have not been able to find that in my Bible.
The only freedom we are promised is in Christ. Physical freedom
and wordily prosperity and happiness are not promised but IN Christ.
I would really like to know where they are getting this teaching....freedom
Subject: Buzzword Bingo for the State of the Union Address
We've got a free set of Bush buzzword bingo cards for the State of the Union Address up on our site.
The cards include words that Bush is likely or unlikely to use during his speech on Wednesday, February 2, 2005. Many of the words are like tombstones, markers for words that used to mean something, words that have been conscripted and lost in Bush's wars against all who don't think he's respectable. Some of the words still stand for something, so Bush is unlikely to use them. For me, listening to Bush speak is worse than a barium enema; maybe this can lighten it up a little bit.
NEW LETTER TO CONGRESS FROM PNAC!!
So, if by "next several years" they mean 4 years, and
taking their lower limit of "at least 25,000 troops," that's
100,000 new troops they're talking about.
Subject: Running From Arnold . . .
Subject: From Where I Stand: a must read on bush, death, and a child
Subject: Senator Rick Santorum, "GOVERNMENT OF, FOR, AND BY THE PEOPLE"
I just completed a 10 minute phone call with Senator Rick Santorumís office. I phoned to ask if they keep a tally of the amount of calls they receive on any particular issue, and I was specifically interested in any constituent input his office had received regarding the vote to confirm the nomination of Condi Rice. She told me that they did have that information, but it could not be released to me, as it was for their internal use only.
After she put me on hold three times when she would not answer my simple repeated question, my call was transferred to a Santorum staffer named Josh. First Josh told me that yes, they do keep a tally. Then Josh told me that they keep a tally, but they only do so after the fact, after the vote. Then Josh told me that they have a good idea as to how much constituent input they receive, and which way the constituent input is leaning, either for or against. But then Josh told me that they discount a lot of the constituent input, if they believe that it was generated by any activism organization of any type. Then Josh told me that while the Senator does ask him (Josh) which way the will of the people is leaning, he told me that that does not determine the Senatorís vote. He told me that the Senator votes "his" conscience, "his" opinion, and "his" will, and not the will of the people.
So I again asked him if he would tell me if he knew whether the will of the people was in favor of, or against, voting for the confirmation of Condi Rice. He told me that the constituent input that the Senatorís office received; that the people were strongly in favor of voting against her confirmation. Of course Senator Santorum voted in favor of her confirmation.
So I switched the topic slightly, and asked Josh for his opinion of government of, for, and by the people. I told him that I thought that the Senator was supposed to represent the will of the people. I asked him what quantity of input or preponderance of demand on one side of an issue would encourage the Senator to vote accordingly. I asked "what if the Senator had received one million requests, and that 90% of them were against her confirmation?" Josh told me that while that would be significant, that the Senator would still vote his own conscience. I again asked about the part of representation being "of, for, and by the people." Josh told me that if I were to ask the Senator that personally, that the Senator would tell me that the U.S. is not a democracy, but rather a Republic, and while the will of the people might be of consideration, it is subordinate to the will of the Senator. Then he told me that if I donít like that, too bad, and that my only option is at the voting booth in the next election.
Having written letters, sending emails, and telephoning my and other Senators, my Congressman, the President, and the Vice President Ė and those contacts totaling well over 1,000 in just the last 8 months alone Ė I can tell you that Senator Santorum is endemic of a much larger problem. And that is, with VERY FEW EXCEPTIONS, no one in government is listening to the people. No one. They are just doing what they want. And if you donít know by now that our government is taking America down the toilet, then you are either a victim of government psyops brainwashing, media collusion, or you are simply disinterested or uninformed.
If you are aware of what our government is up to, and you are doing nothing, then get up off your ass, and do something. It doesnít take much time, very little effort, and certainly no cost to email or toll-free phone a politician. It is inexcusable if you are doing nothing. It is time for all of us to rise up, start screaming, and bombard the government and media with our demands.
Will that achieve anything? I donít know. But I hope so. So excuse me while I go write yet another letter, and make another phone call.
Subject : An Open Letter To US Sen. Barack Obama (D-IL)
Greetings Senator Obama,
I was recently watching the confirmation hearings for Ms. Rice to become the next U.S. Secretary Of State. Although a good number of the questions that were asked of her were, to a degree, tough, but in this voter's eyes, as well as many others I'm sure, weren't tough enough, or, for that matter, seemed like punches were pulled, just to appease the critics of the atrocious and embarrassing policies and actions of the current administration. After reviewing the Senate's Committee on Foreign Relations vote to approve Ms. Rice's name to be forwarded to the whole United States Senate, I saw that the overwhelming vote of 16 yea to 2 nay [was] rather embarrassing as well.
I am extremely disappointed in your decision to vote in favor of Ms. Rice. It sends an early signal to voters that the Democratic Party has weakened considerably, and that this country is headed into a very dark direction for at least the next four years. This vote, in addition to the DNC's lack of integrity and strength in regard to the challenge of the Ohio voting statistics this past election, only shows that the Democratic National Party has given up, and the fight that was fought when the current 'regime' stole the election from V.P. Al Gore, drained any life the party had left.
Why didn't the DNC challenge the Ohio results? Even AFTER Diebold SETTLED for admittingly using ILLEGAL electronic voting software? There was such a strong case. And the DNC laid down. Other embarrassing issues that haven't been brought to light: Karl Roverer's dual citizenship between the U.S. and Germany, in addition to his family's historical connections to the 3rd Reich and the building of various concentration camps.
But, let's not stop there. How about the history of George Herbert Walker and Prescott Bush and the 3rd reich as well? Let's add in Chase Bank, Shell Oil, Standard Oil, General Motors Corp. of America as well as RCA Corp. of America, to list only a few. There are way too many issues that aren't being challenged hard enough, or at all, and the lack of attention will certainly bring the integrity of this country down even further. Not only in the eyes of the world, but the eyes of its citizens as well.
Don't get me wrong Senator, I REALLY do love my country, and I can appreciate what our forefather's went through to make it possible, but by the actions, or lack of, by the DNC, really makes me wonder about my government of today, and who do they really represent.
Thank you in advance for your time,
Raymond D Bollacker - Pissed off American
Subject: Some of the Dems still Disappoint me
To the Dems that voted in support for Dr. Rice in the name of "the
president has the right to choose who he works with," is just another
example and reason how we have been strapped with the singing Attorney
General, and the Rumsfeld. There is a reason for cabinet positions
needing to be confirmed by the senate, and not just rubber stamped.
You would think that they would understand that by now. Maybe they
should stop crying about how they are treated by their follow members
on the other side, and understand that a bully will always find
and run over the weak.
Subject: What A Joke.... Where are the Voters?
Subject: Hypocrite of the week
Once again, using Gonzales as your hypocrite of the week, you show
that you have no idea what the word hypocrite means. A hypocrite
says one thing, and does the opposite. Gonzales never spoke against
what he now champions. Just because you don't like someone, doesn't
mean he's a hypocrite. Please look up the word in the dictionary
so you can figure out who a real hypocrite is. In the future please
title your piece "People I don't like" rather than using words you
can't define or pronounce.
[BuzzFlash Note: Our Webster's says hypocrisy is "pretending to be what one is not, or to feel what one does not feel; esp. a pretense of virtue, piety, etc." Gonzales' statement (here), and his actions as chief counsel to the president (see memo) reflect a person who says he will defend human rights, but wrote the justification for his government not doing so. What is that? To us, his prevaricating seems much worse than Clinton's meaning of "is" testimony.]
New facts I just saw on MSNBC: Voters must show 2 forms of ID, and must give fingerprints. Some random notes about the election and coverage:
The past few days, I have been watching news coverage about the Iraqi election in several major cable and network news shows. I haven't heard a single media voice ask whether the Iraqi voters know who or what they are voting for. No one has commented or reported on the information available to voters and its accuracy. In media coverage, "legitimacy" is apparently defined by turnout alone, with no other factors considered when discussing legitimacy.
The importance of the election's legitimacy has not been stressed, when it is mentioned. I have heard no news reporter, anchor or commentator mention the issue of whether the threat of insurgent attack and possible death to voters may compromise the legitimacy of the election. I have heard no discussion of what standards should be expected of any election in order for it to be considered a valid expression of the will of the people. I have heard no one ask how the vote count will be conducted or verified, or what laws and enforcement exist to prevent fraud. I have heard no one represent my opinion - that an election should express the verifiable and informed will of the voters, so there should be some accountable system in place to evaluate and demonstrate that result. If you hear any discussion of those points in US media, please let me know.
Subject: Surprise!!! 72% of registered voters vote, just like yesterday's
late pred. of 75%
A BuzzFlash Reader
Subject: Rupert Murdoch buys Al Jazeera, re-named Fox News Middle
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