The BuzzFlash Mailbag
April 5, 2002
Last night, out of the blue, my husband, who proudly calls himself a Reagan Democrat (just to taunt me, I think), decided he wanted a copy of David Brock's "Blinded by the Right." He's a "right now or forget it" kind of guy. We called our small chain local bookstore and they had never heard of it. I asked him to see if the store had "The Best Democracy Money Can Buy." Never heard of it. For fun I said "See if they have "Bias." The store clerk happily replied that they had that one, and that IT was on the New York Times bestseller list, unlike the others.
Not deterred, we went for a road trip, going from suburban bookstore to suburban bookstore with no results, until we ended up at the Borders in Oakbrook [IL], where Greg Palast is scheduled to do a book signing this Saturday, April 6th.
"Blinded by the Right" was fairly easy to find, but "The Best Democracy Money Can Buy" was nowhere to be seen. There were no advertisements anywhere announcing the upcoming book signing.
I went to the service counter to ask for the book while gently saying something like, "Well, he is going to be here for a book signing, isn't he?" The clerk, a middle-aged woman, responded as if I had asked for a bag of contraband. While nervously keying her computer she mumbled, and I thought I heard something like, "Well we haven't sold any yet." She leaned forward and whispered for me to follow her. I dutifully began to do so, when she abruptly stopped. In a clear and audible voice, sure in her decision, she said "No. Wait here." She disappeared behind the stacks, and moments later appeared with one copy of the "contraband."
I've never been to a book signing, but I am looking forward to this and wanted to read the book before I showed up. Is this SOP? Do they have cases of it waiting to be displayed on signing day? Is Greg Palast getting the polite bums' rush? Did I say something wrong? Is it dangerous and conspiratorial to ask for a book in a bookstore? Was the clerk afraid?
I had wanted to ask the checkout guy what their policy on new federal witchhunt book purchasing records was. Were they aware of the law, how would they handle it, would they fight for the right to read, etc? But I had had enough of a fright for a Wednesday evening.
Thanks for all you do! Even my husband is beginning to be stirred to action.
An anonymous firefighter
So the Post has twice assigned books exposing the Clinton-hating right to "reviewers" who turn out to be members of that Clinton-hating right, a fact which the Post does not divulge to its readers.
Elementary competence requires a knowledge of the credentials of a prospective reviewer, his background and his connections. What else is an editor paid for but to do such things? In the case of controversial and politically sensitive books, elementary common sense requires an in-depth examination of the reviewer's background. In the case where a similar book has previously been assigned to a hostile partisan, only a fool or a conniver would fail to double and triple check. The reviewer need not be mentioned by name in the book. Just the fact that he was employed by or is a known associate of a party criticized in the book should raise a red flag.
The connection need not be openly proclaimed by the reviewer. The editor is expected to exert herself and do the research. A newspaper is expected to provide untainted and disinterested analyses, unless it clearly indicates otherwise. Anyone who subscribes to the Post has a right to be very, very angry when deceived on such a fundamental point.
The public knows that a vital element of Democracy is at stake here, the communication of information. It is so critical an element that in repeated cases such as this we must assume first that it was done on purpose, not by mistake. Perhaps it would be instructive to be told how these referrals came about. Did some unnamed person proffer both these tainted reviewers? Are we to believe that these names were picked out of a hat? If it was really just a bizarre series of undirected mistakes, then it is necessary for the Post to prove it, in clear detail. Taking a position of umbrage and arrogance proves the opposite.
And of course their readers are still waiting for a properly unbiased review. How odd that a newspaper of the Post's stature would fail to review such an important book.
Subj: Powell to the rescue
Is it only I who think that this is part of Bush Inc.'s strategy? Hands-off until it bottoms out and then it is the moralist freedom fighters to the rescue. I can see it unfolding. Even a slight improvement will be hailed as a victory for Bush. Mark my words. They will turn this horrible situation into a plus for them.
what we needed, on top of all the right-winger bickering and beatings
shows towards Democrats we will now have Donahue representing the "liberal"
side. How can he represent us when he will definitely confuse our younger
voters with his "there is no difference between Democrats and Republicans"
mantra? That is what he did in the 2000 elections and he certainly confused
my young voting cousins. Of course, we all have known what those major
differences are. Republicrats are putting us on the brink of WW3 but Mr.
Great, another Democrat bashing show..... No more TV for me.
Did anyone notice a dark spot on the bridge/top of Bush's nose and another dark spot under his left eye that were noticeably heavily covered with makeup in his speech/statement today (Thursday)? I did!
Nancy Lynn Nagy
You're doing a great job. We're finally seeing some hope amidst the terror from without and within. Please, that immature president we have, George, must you refer to him as Boy George? It fits, but its been taken by a far more honest and entertaining human being. How about Georgie Boy??
Keep up the great service you're performing for us all!
Jean in PA
I have to say that...with all due respect to Bill Press who did an admirable job under difficult circumstances...I think that CNN's Crossfire has improved considerably now that James Carville and Paul Begala are co-hosting the show. Finally there are hosts who dare to say out loud on national television what everyone already knows: that Bush stole the election, that Bush inexplicably went AWOL while avoiding military service in Vietnam, and that Bush is an unqualified, incompetent numbskull. At last Tucker Carlson and Robert Novak are having to work for their pay, and judging from their level of agitation, they don't particularly like it. (Ever notice that they rarely address the charges, preferring simply to accuse the other side of demagoguery.)
It's about time that Democrats aggressively and repeatedly pounded these (and other) right-wing morons. Finally someone dares to contradict "Herr Rove" and the message of the Bush propaganda machine.
A little "heresy" can be very refreshing.
was starting to think the Democrats had gone into a coma and that I was
one of the few people in this country who was unfortunate enough to still
be conscious. With a bit of luck, perhaps the Democrats in Congress will
now take the hint, remove their highly unbecoming pink tutus, and start
speaking out as well. They must decide very soon what
If they wait until September, just before the elections, to come out with some belated platform that opposes Bush's policies, it will be far too late. They can't make good with a few simple promises in the two remaining months what they failed to do in the 22 months since the (s)election in 2000. In other words, our Democratic representatives should realize that NOW is the time to either fish or cut bait. Granted, there were extenuating circumstances because of what happened last September. But Bush certainly didn't let those tragic events stop him from ramming through his antisocial agenda. On the contrary, he regarded it as a golden opportunity to be exploited! Now is the time to fight back. And, contrary to what the Republicans would have you believe, you aren't "unpatriotic" if you do.
Please keep up the good work! And thanks!
Your site is my absolute favorite on the internet, please keep it up.
I have just one comment...As a fan of the group Boy George, the headline 'Dubya Loves Ozzy? More Publicity Stunts from Boy George. 4/5' kind of bothers me. George O'Dowd, the real Boy George, certainly does not deserve to be confused with the imposter-in-thief.
great musician and survivor should not even be slightly associated with
jr bu$h. I'm really sure Boy George would just hate the thought of being
confused with the
Thanks for listening. Again, you are the best, keep it up.
[BuzzFlash Note: We regret any stomach ulcers this may cause Culture Club's former front-man and apologize for the unpleasant imagery experienced by BuzzFlash Readers, but we feel this name-association is topnotch. Besides the appropriate connotations of juvenile behavior and immature emotional growth, what could be a more appropriate theme song for Dubya's relationship to corporate avarice than "I'll tumble 4 ya"? We'll take your suggestion under advisement.]
Colin Powell's statement of March 3, exonerating the ISI from any responsibility for Pearl's disappearance and murder, is shocking. Few in Pakistan believe such assurances. Musharraf was not involved, but he must know what took place. He has referred to Pearl as an "over-intrusive journalist" caught up in "intelligence games." Has he told Washington what he knows? And if so, why did Powell absolve the ISI?
A BuzzFlash Reader
I sent the following to Cynthia Tucker regarding her editorial in the Atlanta Constitution on Zell Miller:
But since the writer prefers to remain anonymous, is there still some way his letter can be published as widely as possible, simply signed "A very concerned American" ...or something like that?
is so much well-meaning material being written these days, but this particular
letter has such eloquence and dignity and reason...it deserves (demands)
to be read as widely as possible. It is, in my opinion, one of the noblest
appeals written since Bush took the presidency.
please, if you know who wrote it, extend to him my most profound admiration.
[BuzzFlash Note: You can use the "SEND THIS PAGE TO A FRIEND" link to email the letter to your friends and family or copy and paste the text of the letter into a word-processing document and send it to your representatives in Washington.]
Regarding the "lack of clues" in the Anthrax case:
Do you think it's time for the Justice Department to "detain" all present and former white male conservative US military scientists?
A BuzzFlash Reader
I don't get it. Florida will allow guns in locked cars (even though a locked car can so easily become an unlocked one with a baseball bat and a busted window).....
Lawmakers change school code to allow guns locked in cars
But a Texas student who helped move his grandmother's possessions in his truck, but was unaware that a knife fell out of the box and into the bed of his truck, gets suspended from school for a year.....
student expelled over bread knife in truck
What's wrong with this picture?
find the disclaimer at the top of the World Media Watch really interesting.
How odd that your audience seems to miss that the World Media Watch doesn't
represent BuzzFlash views, though this is the same audience of enlightened,
smart liberals arrayed against the
otherwise noted, all original