The BuzzFlash Mailbag
September 4, 2002
It's a sad day when things have gotten so bad that even conservative Republicans are beating Democrats to the punch on questioning the disgraceful behavior of our government.
Midway down the page (9/3):
While the public doesn't necessarily see or pay attention to all of this, there has been a corrosive effect on the filter through which media and political elites view Administration statements and actions. The Brent Bozells of the world would like to see this as simply liberal media bias, but there are plenty of people on the right who will at least quietly agree they share this view, based on past Bush decisions such as steel tariffs.
Ari's statements get the Milbank Treatment in the Washington Post ... LINK
... while the story leads the Washington Times , under a Sammon byline. LINK
And USA Today's Nichols adds crisp analysis: "A senior State Department official said the apparent difference is one of nuance. Cheney, he said, tends to stress that inspections won't work; Powell tends to emphasize that while he also believes inspections will not stop Saddam's drive to acquire weapons of mass destruction, he believes the administration should go through the U.N. process as a way to build international support for any U.S. attack on Iraq." LINK
A good number of elite Democrats believe that Karl Rove is fully capable of a "wag the dog" election strategy (almost as many as there were Republicans who believed it about Bill Clinton).
And even if you don't think that the timing of how the administration has played out the Iraq debate is the least bit suspicious, you can say that having the fall congressional agenda overviews (like today's New York Times' one LINK focused on the Iraq discussion, as well as the homeland security department tussle, is pretty good for Republicans, compared to the alternatives. "
Thank you for your excellent website. It is one of four that I check every day.
I have a feeling that Bush's alcoholism comes into play when he is on the ranch. (He looked very bad in Nov/Dec of 2000) The public does not have access to the place. His drinking could account for the confusion in administration policy on Iraq. It could also be that Bush is just not bright enough to manage such a complex undertaking (as the invasion of Iraq against the wishes and advice of the world).
Joseph R. Cantwell
Subj: ABC SAYS BUSH CUTTING JOB TRAINING TO HELP FOREIGN WORKERS
Monday' s ABC World News Tonight did a report on the administration cutting a high tech job training program in order to shift the money into faster processing of visas for foreign workers seeking --- HIGH TECH JOBS. According to the report, the administration is using the excuse that the program is a failure when the available evidence is that it is, in fact, a success.
If the Democrats aren't all over this, they're hopeless.
The URL below is the one to contact ABC about their stories. Below it is a copy of the email I just sent to them pointing out the problems with their story about unarmed planes and Flt. 93. It may be that this disinformation is to cover Flt. 93 being shot down, but I'm not sure I would agree. The Wash. Post series went into detail about the shoot down decision. I for one would not have faulted them. What else could they have done if the Airliner was unresponsive to the interception?
Flt. 93 perhaps is being used to cover the inaction on Flt. 77, the one that hit the Pentagon. That should have been intercepted. That it wasn't points to Bush sitting there doing nothing. Either frozen by fear, or frozen by indecision (the other possibility is letting it happen).
This sudden eruption of stories, first with the BBC and now with ABC suggests that the administration is concerned about questions being raised not only by us, but many others, including the families of the victims, about the failure to intercept any of the Flights. With all of the networks and the print media doing stories on 9-11 for the anniversary, one would think that someone would be asking the right questions.
The really insane thing is that the stories coming out suggest a complete failure on the part of NORAD, the NMCC, and the FAA. That's what happens when people know they can put out any type of garbage and that it will not be investigated by the media or the Congress.
We are being betrayed. Those who died in NY, Pennsylvania, and at the Pentagon are being sold out. What amazes me is that there has been no out cry from the military. Surely some of them realize that they have been betrayed and that perhaps the deaths at the Pentagon could have (should have) been prevented. My e to ABC follows along with the URL and the story from ABC.
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Permit me to use the mailbag as a vehicle to ask a question of your readers.
Do we have any readers who are sworn to uphold the law... police, sheriffs, state troopers? If so, has GW Bush come to your town to give an (invited only) speech? If so, were there special orders from your superiors on herding Bush dissenters into protest zones? Were you ever ordered to call for help from the Secret Service if there was refusal to go to a protest zone or take your sign down? What kind of things go on in law enforcement before GW comes to town? Can someone enlighten us?
Many of the mailbaggers demonstrate that they are willing to speak out for democracy and the first amendment. How 'bout those who represent the law? Certainly, there is one of you among us, who is willing to give us the scoop anonymously! How 'bout it?
Subj: "Therapy" with the Washington Times
I participate in on-line political polling conducted by Zogby International. Every few weeks or so I get an e-mail questionnaire asking for my opinions on this or that political story of the day. Last week they asked me if I'd be interested in participating in a focus group being set up for their current client - the Washington Times - to discuss newspapers in the nation's capital.
Well, if you don't know, the Washington Times is owned by Rev Moon, and its "reporting" and editorials are, well.. You know how far right Pat Buchanan is? The Times is to the right of that. So, of course I jumped at the opportunity (plus the $75 they promised). I mean, how often do you get paid for your opinion? And by an institution you basically loathe?
So, I made my way over to the Times headquarters at the appointed time. I tell you, just setting foot in their door made me want to take a shower. Anyway, there were about 30 other participants around the table, along with the facilitator from Zogby and about 5 or 6 chief Times editors sitting to the side taking notes. Everyone was asked to identify themselves: where they lived, what they did and whether they considered themselves liberal, moderate or conservative. About half the participants (especially the younger ones) said they identified politically "depending on the issue". One said he was a libertarian (a college student). And, surprisingly, only one said he "usually voted Republican". (One was a Nader voter, but still a liberal.) All the rest said they were Democrats. Now I know, this is the DC area, but still, I was surprised that there were virtually no hardcore conservatives (and so was the facilitator!)
Anyway, I eventually got my opportunity. The first question to everyone was, "What's your general impression of the Times?" (Significantly, only one said he had a subscription, and only a few said they read it from time to time.) My answer was "somewhat tabloid and reactionary." The facilitator (but probably not the editors) was surprised by my description "tabloid."
Well, generally, the Times took a pretty rough beating. No one really had much kindness for the paper. And oh yeah, at one point I also launched into a quick sermon about "media whoredom" (I didn't use that word, though), challenging the myth of the "liberal media," and reminding everyone there that nearly 95% of editorial content in this country is controlled by about 5 media conglomerates and their corporate owners. The only thing liberal about the media, I said, was "The West Wing," and that's FICTION! I think I made an impression. Oh, it felt good!
A BuzzFlash Reader.
In recent days I've noticed a very disturbing series of events. It looks as if Pootie Poot just may be Dubya's soul mate after all. It seems they really do "understand" each other, just like arch enemies "understand" each other.
Putin has been quietly and steadily building a coalition with Dubya's "Axis of Evil". All of a sudden (for us who try to keep up with world events) Putin backing Iraq, Iran and North Korea and doing business with them, and today, in the New York Times he's said to threaten to use his veto power in the Security Council against Bush in the "war on Iraq".
I've long suspected that the most conservative republicans have dearly missed the Cold War. We were so much easier to manipulate when we had the "Evil Empire" threatening to annihilate us at any moment. And Putin is, after all, an ex KGB man. I'm sure he misses the good 'ol days too.
Russia is setting itself up as the guys who have to stop the United States' expansionism and acquisition of the planet's energy sources!
It makes a twisted kind of Bush sense -- you know, Good versus Evil. Now he won't have to deal with nuances, shades of gray, or of questioning our foreign policy anymore. Our old foe is coming back. Only Russia is trying to become a world power again by stopping OUR take-over of the world!
Has anyone else noticed this trend? Are Bush and Co. making us the latest "Evil Empire" in the eyes of the world? If so this doesn't look any better for the future of our planet than it did when the Soviet Union and the US practiced detente. I hope I'm just reading things into perfectly innocent actions, but I fear I'm not.
Judith Foster, Berkeley
So Rush Limbaugh avoid serving his country during the Viet Nam war due to anal cysts. This just proves my theory about the Great White Dope is correct -- he is nothing but a boil on the butt of humanity.
Subj: Musharraf says OBL not responsible for 9/11
This came up during today's press briefing, and was ignored by Ari and the white house press corps:
When did Musharraf come out and say OBL might not be behind the 9/11 attacks? Have you heard this? You'd think it might be front page news, and yet I don't see it anywhere.
Subj: The REAL Bush Platform...
If George W. Bush had run in 2000 on a more accurate--and truthful--campaign platform of:
--appointing a cold-blooded ideologue as Attorney General who would attack our constitutional freedoms and bring back the FBI of J. Edgar Hoover,
--gutting the nation's environmental laws, refusing to limit carbon emissions and withdrawing U.S. support of the Kyoto Treaty,
--obliterating the federal budget surplus, bringing back deficit spending and dipping into Social Security funds earmarked for the retirement of the Baby Boom generation,
--starting an unprovoked, unsupported war with Iraq and completely isolating the United States in the world community,
would the election have been so close that five right wing Supreme Court justices could have carried Bush over the finish line and thwarted the people's choice of Al Gore?
I seriously doubt it.
As Americans go to the polls this November, we should keep in mind that this government is shoving an agenda down our nation's throat that would not have been supported by a single voter in 2000. If we can hold Bill Clinton accountable for lying about his personal life to the point of bringing impeachment proceedings against him, we should definitely hold this administration and its party accountable for lying about how they would govern our country.
Thank you Robert Kahn and Vinton Cerf. Finally, someone has painted the correct picture of the remarkable contribution of Al Gore to the development of the internet.
Those of us in industry who responded during the mid-90's to the "Grand Challenges" that were put forth to us by Al Gore and who participated in the implementation of them understand full well the vision that Al Gore had for the Internet and his contribution. Huge strides were made as industry was linked to the national laboratories in a way that enhanced knowledge and computing capability of all parties. Huge amounts of critical information and data flowed both ways over the Internet, helping U. S. industry and the national laboratories to establish positions of strength after the cold war.
Only Al Gore, in the unique position as Vice President, and with his vision and leadership and full understanding of the potential of the Internet could have carried off this incredible marriage of industry with the national laboratories in a way that could benefit both and yet maintain the independence and the mission of each.
Those who say otherwise and make fun of this remarkable contribution are among the nay sayers that are typical of each generation. Those in the press who perpetrated this fraud of making fun of a brilliant man and a brilliant contribution ought to have done a little homework on their own.
Thank you Robert Kahn and Vinton Cerf and especially thank you Al Gore.
Margaret Waid, Ph.D. (Mathematics)
P.S. For a little fun: Mathematicians do it with "algorithms".
Subj: Protest Bush Every Chance You Get
I have an idea for future protesters at Bush/Cheney events: Make sure you have a few friends with you, and each should carry signs that say: "Elect George W. Bush!" The local police will think you're all for Dumbya, not being smart enough to catch the irony of your little sign. They'll usher you straight to the front of the line of other Commander in Thief supporters. When you see the Bush motorcade approaching, quickly reach under your baggie sweatshirt or jacket and take out your folded-up but very large and very colorful banner, stretch it across you and your friends so that its message is easily read: "No Blood For Oil!" or "Impeach Bush" or "Gore in 2004!" or whichever TRUTH you wish to express. Chances are the bought-and-paid-for media, thinking that they are filming Bush supporters, will catch your performance on video tape, and may also inadvertently film the riot-gear clad police arresting you. What a story! And maybe they'll show it on the news that night, and maybe, just maybe, enough of the people watching Faux News that night will catch a glimpse of the George W. Bush System of Democracy, oops, I mean, Dictatorship, at work, and they may not like what they see. Oh, yeah, and George may see something he won't like: true American patriotism at its best.
A BuzzFlash Reader
Subj: A real education reform that would actually produce results.
The idea that teachers should be qualified in the subjects they teach is not, or should not be a revolutionary concept. Yet, as the study quoted in this article points out, in many school districts, that is sadly the case. However, as the article also points out, the solution is not to be found in draining funds from already underfunded public schools as Mr. Bush's voucher plan will do. Indeed, if the Federal Government was serious about solving this problem, then it would ensure that trained quality teachers are assigned to safe clean schools. This, contrary to Mr. Bush's blandishments on the subject will require federal funding to offset the disparity in revenue which underperforming schools labor under. "Local control" and "local funding" or the lack thereof have proven to be the problem, not the solution. Absent some equalization on the part of the Federal Government, economically distressed areas will never be able to rectify these problems since they will never be able to invest the resources to make the structural changes which are needed. Revenue sharing works for the NFL, in that it has generated competitive balance and professional parity for all participating teams. I think its high time we tried it for our schools. I think they, and their students, are a bit more important.
Subj: Still pushing the attack on the White House story
The excerpt from the story below shows that the White House still is pushing the White House under attack story. They first did it with Flt. 77 the one that hit the Pentagon. Even after radar showed the story to be false, Rove and Condoleeza Rice continued to push it for weeks.
Now it is Flt. 93. The problem with that is that it crashed 160 miles from Washington DC. No one knows what it was targeting. But its necessary to have a reason for Bush running away from Washington DC, his post as CIC. If they thought that there was a threat to the White House, Cheney would not have been in his office almost until Flt. 77 hit the Pentagon (Wash. Post "10 Days in September").
These people have lied about what happened. They have no shame. Only a servile media and a cowardly Congress makes it possible to do this.
That this coward, this liar should go to Pennsylvania to bask in the courage of others is beyond contempt. The man does not deserve to appear at any memorial to 9-11. As he did that day he should tuck his tail between his legs and hide. He should be impeached.
RE Reynolds, Orange Park Fl
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I sent a letter to The Fresno Bee with much the same content as I'm emailing to you. So far The Bee has not published my letter, although I see nothing at all heretical about quoting the Declaration of Independence. I'd thought I'd sent this you for your consideration.
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Watching the increasing repression of the Bush administration inspired me to reread the Declaration of Independence. Among other parts of the Declaration, there was an enumeration of grievances against British King George III. Its interesting to note some of the parallels in the grievances expressed by the founders of the American republic and what we have witnessed with the Bush regime.
The Declaration of Independence states: "HE has erected a Multitude of new Offices, and sent hither Swarms of Officers to harrass (sic) our People, and eat out their Substance." Does this sound a good deal like the Office of Homeland Security? The ostensible purpose of the Office of Homeland Security is to integrate all relevant departments of the federal government into one giant bureaucracy that will protect the "homeland." But so far all actions of the Bush administration point toward a system of spying, harassing, jailing, and building dossiers on American citizens who have done nothing more than dissent against the Bush regime.
The Declaration of Independence notes that King George III was guilty of: " depriving us, in many Cases, of the Benefits of Trial by Jury." We know that a man named Jose Padilla, the so-called "dirty bomber," was arrested and has been held in a military brig. But Mr. Padilla, an American citizen, has not been charged with a crime. We also know that approximately 1,200 people have been detained since the terrorist attacks on September 11, but the federal government has not even released the names of the detainees. They are being held unlawfully, indefinitely, and in secret.
The Declaration of Independence goes on to say, "HE has affected to render the Military independent of and superior to the Civil Power." The Bush administration has pushed ideas such as secret military tribunals that would try, convict, and even execute people in secret. We have heard rumors that Posse Comitatus, a law that prohibits the use of the military in domestic police functions, would be overturned. It is a chilling and all too plausible prospect that the United States could become a military dictatorship.
We dont have to imagine any kind of science fiction scenario, or even read Orwell's 1984, to see the face of tyranny. We can see it in our own historical documents and in the daily news.
Subj: Easy on the Green Bashing...
You should know first of all that most Greens do not think alike. So, I am not a McGaa supporter -- I think he is full of baloney, and does not adhere to Green principles anyway. I only say this to indicate that many of the folks who probably read your site are Greens. And while I do not buy much of the slant offered, I do appreciate the up-to-date bashings of The Resident. So, even if we will likely not agree on many things, I just want to thank you for the hard work.
otherwise noted, all original