June 9, 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.
THIS IS PART 2 OF THE JUNE 9, 2005 BUZZFLASH MAILBAG. CLICK HERE FOR PART 1
Subject: Letter to Debra Pickett
I thought you may be interested to receive a copy of an email sent this morning to Ms. Debra Pickett at the Chicago Sun-Times. It was my reaction to her previous column and the one just published, related to the outpouring of support letters from other BuzzFlash subscribers.
Dear Ms. Pickett:
I was among those who learned, via BuzzFlash, about your recent column related to our current President's ironic praise for a healthy and free press...in someone else's country. Like so many others, I found myself very gratified at the candor and perspective with which you wrote. However, I was not among those that took the time to directly write to you in response -- though I did "copy and paste" your column and shared it via email with a couple dozen friends and family members.
As you write today about the somewhat uncomfortable reaction you found welling up within while reviewing this outpouring of complimentary letters, please bear in mind why so many Americans were moved to take the time and effort to salute you for your words; it is the sad lack of insightful work to be found among the ranks of the "mainstream media."
In an age where reworded White House press releases are supposed to pass for true reporting, where lopsided punditry is supposed to be embraced as insightful journalism, it is becoming increasingly rare to find a voice unwilling to remain silent about the horrific transgressions that have been visited upon our citizens and our global neighbors at the hands of this Administration.
As an example of the deteriorating state of our own "free press," reflect on the absolute lack of comprehensive, investigative journalism to be found in the wake of the release of the so-called "Downing Street Memo." Contrast the current subservience of the nation's primary sources for daily news with the exceptional reporting that unveiled the truths behind the Watergate break-in and the involvement of President Richard Nixon. The recent identification of "Deep Throat" places a past example of journalism at its finest squarely in the sights of today's reporters and columnists. How much more insidious is it for a sitting President to lie to a nation about the reasons for waging war -- causing tens of thousands of human beings to die -- than it was for an American President seeking to damage their political enemies, to preside over a few crooks rifling through some offices and file cabinets to learn more precisely about a political opponent's strategies? Yet, in the latter instance, when just two dogged journalists refused to be denied access to the truth, demanding answers and accountability -- they ultimately pried open a can of worms that led to the indictment of government officials and then President Nixon's resignation from office. Does this country currently have a press corp of equal significance and vitality? Why aren't we seeing an endless stream of reporting on the manipulation of intelligence and the misrepresentations of President Bush in the year leading up to the invasion of Iraq? Could it be that it is this thirst for independently-conducted journalism within the national desert of investigative reporting that fueled so many readers to write to you with their praise and their thanks?
We have before us written documentation of President Bush's intention to attack another nation while at the same time he was declaring that was not his intention. We have substantial evidence that intelligence was being slanted in its presentation to the American people and the world to make this case for war. What we don't have is Woodward and Bernstein beating down the doors of officialdom -- and holding clandestine meetings to further their fact-finding -- seeking to bring clarity and light to one of the most important stories in the history of our nation.
Maybe, just maybe, those hundreds of emails you have recently received were triggered by a concerned populace hoping there could still be a working journalist out there with the courage and the professionalism to pursue a story that could prove to unseat a duplicitous President.
Thank you for your willingness to move ever closer to being just such a mainstream media presence.
Subject: Just Catching Up
I must keep this short....starting with the Home Page and the mailbag of 6/1/05
To John, of Chapel Hill...I know exactly what you mean by the other side. Sunday nite, after returning...I watched a couple of things. On the 100 most influential Americans... the only ones we will vote on are the last 25. When Matt Lauer, who did the last 25, in Alphabetical order....mentioned both Bill Clinton and John F. Kennedy, he remarked that they were both brilliant men with great this and that...but, he mentioned that they both had personal flaws that might be taken into consideration...something like that. However, when he mentioned Rudy Guiliani...he did not. I intend to write to him and ask why? Rudy Guiliani's personal life would dwarf either Kennedy or Clinton...and that is why we are left to wonder!
6/2/05 mailbag...to Gail...I also hate that phrase that all people who just love this war use...'the men who are fighting for our freedom.' It literally gives me chills, I hate it so much. I have a cousin...who is republican..dyed in the wool...and believes everything that anyone in this administration would tell her. She passed on to me, during the time I was gone, a huge pulsating flag...with black pulsating letters...telling us that when we are tired, or sick...or have had a bad day...we should stop and think about what these brave soldiers are going through. And then, it showed a couple of dead soldiers...and one who was passing the time...sleeping in a hole dug for what looked like a grave. So, In return, I sent to her the one from the article, "The house that Bush bombed"...I have seen many more like that! And, turnabout is fair play...I always say. I know that she tries to change me and it is not gonna happen...so, this is the way to answer her! I told her...in the forward to it, that there are two sides...and the little kids are the ones who get to me. I also referred her to a Newsweek article...called the "Orphans of Tal Afar"...one of the saddest things maybe I have ever read! This does not for one minute, take away from the military...I have great respect for the military...I lost a brother in Vietnam...I respect them all!
On 5/31/05...Shirley Smith's reminder of what we pay to keep George Bush safe...it takes so much more than it ever did any other president...and he has to know that. He just simply does not care. From the Car (SUV) he rides in which is armored much better than any soldier in Iraq...to the hundreds of Secret Service...it is something to think about! And to the reader...Thanks for the reminder of the difference in the approval ratings in the Bush...at this time...and Clinton right after Impeachment...20 points? That is something we can all be proud of...we voted for him! On Sun.nite...6/5/ I watched a pretty fair interview with Clinton...moderated by Brian Williams! Sometimes...I think we forget just how brilliant he was..and they only touched on the Impeachment....He says he was not convicted because he was not guilty. And, he was likely right...he was not guilty of what Kenneth Starr made of it!
I agree with all the Mailbag readers who think the Downing Street Memo is the "Smoking Gun"...It took long enough to even get it on the air...and it will die like everything else does in this crappy administration...but, someone has to listen eventually! I suppose there might be some hope, if Congressman Jones can backtrack on his Freedom Fries...No one seems to be paying attention...but he sure has changed his mind! Thanks, Leslie, I will check into getting my "Downing Street Memo" bumper sticker asap! That should make all the dimwitted republicans that I know...wonder!! And, "Corporate Media" is a good change from Mainstream Media...will practice!
And, to all of you who have seen a change in C-span's Washington Journal, I have noticed it for a while now. I hate to think that Brian Lamb...is falling into the trap. He was once so loved by everyone...listeners suggested that he should run for president! Sadly, no more! There was a time...when callers called in and said something absolutely stupid, he would correct them...but no more...anything goes now. It is not my place to go for news any more.
As to the St. Louis Post Dispatch article...I read that and although it is causing some parents to think...they still want to blame someone other than Bush. They want to place the blame on Rumsfeld...or whomever. They just will not blame the republicans...and I know enough republicans that they will do the same...in the end...they will blame others. I have a theory...and I have had it since things were discovered that proved them liars. The WMD...the connection to Saddam...many things...that have gone terribly wrong. The republicans that I know...and there are many...are seemingly too prideful to admit that they would fall for anything like that! I remember after the election...my husband told me that he thought that they would still find weapons...and I had to be the one that told him when it was announced...that they had called off the search for WMD last Sept...but, it was not announced until Feb. 2005. He actually said, that nothing surprised him anymore. I really wonder...his family is so etched in stone, republican! He will not watch a speech...or any time Bush is on television he will not watch him...I have no idea why! I watched Clinton every time he was on the tube...and I have watched Bush as much. I will never be caught not knowing...you have to be informed!
Glad to be back to my main source of news...Missed you all.
Subject: The Definition of a Cult
I got to thinking about the way the Christian Right conducts themselves and decided that I'd like to see how they compared with the definition of a cult. I found a site on the Internet that defined a cult and what I found out was, they indeed do conduct themselves like a cult.
Well, since everyone is into framing nowadays, I think they should be called by the frame they fit, a cult - The Christian Right Cult! Below is the definition of a cult which came from the following site:
From here on out, we should refer to them as the Christian Cultists. That should be hammered on each and every day and James Dobson, Pat Robertson and the other Christian Right wackos should be referred to as "cult leaders." Just the very thought of being considered a cultist would turn people away from them.
The one who I would like to see open the ball is Howard Dean. The right would go nuts and this would be front page material and would get it into the mainstream mindset very quickly. Then, we could say, "See, they're acting just like a cult. Look at what they're doing. It is classic cultic behavior as defined by element 6 of the '7 ELEMENTS OF A CULTIC GROUP' definition."
I am a born-again Christian, but I consider these "Pharisees" a blight on our society. They are to Christianity as Stalin was to democracy because all they are after is money and power. Read the definition below and see if they don't fit it to a tee!
Gary from Phoenix
Subject: My Thank You Fax to Senator Edward M. Kennedy...A True American Patriot!
Dear Senator Kennedy:
I truly want to thank you, Senator, for presenting the Downing Street Memo to congress and to tell you that your bravery in doing so spoke to truth. You were among the few senators that voted no to resolution 1441 also known as the Iraq Resolution and for that you are to be heralded as the protector of the truth. The state of the union would be in better shape if every elected leader spoke to truth. Another brave man came to our senate and spoke to truth and his name is George Galloway, who is a member of the British Parliament, where he said this:“Senator, in everything I said about Iraq, I turned out to be right and you turned out to be wrong and 100,000 people paid with their lives; 1600 of them American soldiers sent to their deaths on a pack of lies; 15,000 of them wounded, many of them disabled forever on a pack of lies." I fully believe that both of your brothers were smiling down at him, and then, as you presented this memo to the Senate.
When your brother Robert stated this, "Each time a person stands up for an ideal, or acts to improve the lot of others, or strikes out against injustice, he sends forth a tiny ripple of hope, and crossing each other from a million different centers of energy and daring, these ripples build a current that can sweep down the mightiest walls of oppression and resistance." There is a great lesson there, Senator. You did just that the other day, where you struck out against injustice and sent out that ripple of hope. By sending out these ripples of hope, my prayer is that it will at some point in the future "sweep down the mightiest walls of oppression" as your brother so prophetically stated and as you so bravely did.
Your brother Robert also stated this: "Whenever men take the law into their own hands, the loser is the law. And when the law loses, freedom languishes." When Pres. Bush lied to congress stating that Iraq had weapons of mass destruction, Iraq had a connection to September 11th and now with the recent Downing Street Memo, he subverted the law of truth and our freedom is in danger of languishing. In my opinion, freedom demands that the truth be told every step of the way. In my opinion both Pres. Bush and even Vice Pres. Cheney should and must be IMPEACHED to protect the very destiny of the United States of America.
When your brother John stated this, "One person can make a difference and every person should try," you took up that baton and went with it. We can all make a difference if we just try to, Senator Kennedy. On February 15, 2003, I was but one person who tried to make a difference and joined millions more to tell our government NO to the Iraq invasion and thankfully people just like you did listen. We were all trying to make a difference where that difference was the saving of countless lives. We were all speaking to truth.
I am about to fax you images of dead and injured Iraqi children which I carry everywhere I go in hopes that others will see the truth and speak to it. I have faxed these very images to the media who must report the truth. I fax them to anyone including the president who chooses to lie and support this invasion to admonish them. It is my hope that you will look upon these images as a reminder that this country needs to change and yes as Pres. Bush stated in the Terri Schiavo case, "err on the side of life." We must all do that when it pertains to pummeling a guiltless people. When I first saw these images, Senator Kennedy, I cried and was deeply angered that my country could do this to children. Whenever Pres. Bush states that he is pro-life and by doing this to innocent children again he is a liar.
Lastly, when your brother John said this, "Ask not what your country can do for you. Ask what you can do for your country," you just did, Senator Kennedy, by presenting the Downing Street Memo to the senate. By speaking to truth that is the only way that our state of the union will remain safe, secure and where we can go ahead as a peaceful people. It is where others will truly see us as the beacon for democracy. So, please keep speaking to truth, Senator Kennedy.
God Bless You,
Mrs. Mary MacElveen
PS: This letter of thanks to you is now being circulated around the Internet, Senator Kennedy.
Subject: Downing Street Activist Site
Response to Mike Brown's letter
Here's a great one! Be certain to scroll down to the daily email target section. Each day during the month of June, 3 MSM email links are provided. We, as users of the site, compose and send brief messages urging coverage of Downing Street Minutes.
The numerous petitions available are good, but I'm hoping this more personal approach will yield awesome results.
Subject: Party Values
I heard a viewer on Washington Journal the other day and her message really resonated with me. She said that Democrats are the party of the Golden Rule and Republicans are the party "Gold Rules." It is a simple explanation which seems to sum it up beautifully. Try it on your "conservative" friends -- it's a great message.
Subject: Mark Felt
Mark Felt should be called the Hero of the Century. This man is a true patriot, who loves his country, and endangered himself in bringing to justice those who wish to harm America.
I'm hoping with all my heart for another hero to come forward, a Deep Throat 2, to remove a Resident worse than Nixon, from his seat in the White House. That includes all the traitors who put him in the position to do the damage he has done, to America and Iraq, and the world in general. Compared to this person who planted himself in the highest place in our land, Nixon was a class act.
Subject: Picking on Wal-Mart?
When I worked at Wal-Mart I was on my husband's work program at SBC, but I knew a lot of people who worked at Wal-Mart part time and their entire pay went to health insurance or they didn't have any at all.
It was also a policy that no matter how much of a work load they put on you, you were supposed to finish before the end of the shift or clock out and work off the clock. They are so kind. A few years back the store that supports troops and veterans forced senior WW II vets to stand outside, in the cold rain of Veteran's Day, to sell their poppies, while they allow Christian Schools to set up shop inside to sell stuff.
Shilling For Fox News
I have recently noticed a disturbing trend on NPR's Morning Edition. It may be happening at other times, but morning is when I usually listen to the radio. It seems as though every time a report is made about something that was said by an official in Washington, DC, the quote is said to have been made to "the media and Fox News." I do not believe that NPR, of all organizations, should be providing free advertising to FOX News, of all organizations.
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