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We Report... You Deride

Friday, October 10, 2003  
A Pox On All Your Houses

I nearly had an "Elvis Moment" during tonight's debate-- if I'd had a gun handy, I would have shot out my TV. I don't know what irritates me more-- the arrogance of the media or the simpiness of the candidates. And they were both on display tonight.

The low point came late in the first half, when Born-Again Neocon Jeff Greenfield fired up one of his patently insufferable sallies: "Recent polls show that most people think Democrats suck the sweat off a dead man's balls, which is why the number of registered Democrats have dropped to historic lows. Why do you think that everyone thinks you all suck and when do you intend to admit that you're ideologically bankrupt and begin to act more like George Bush?"

The question screamed for someone to channel James Carville or Bob Somerby-- to deliver a full-on blast at the three CNN simps:

"Why have so many people lost faith in the Democratic party? The main reason is that quality of journalism in this country has gone right down the toilet. Faux News has spent the last seven years slamming us 24/7. Rush Limbaugh has been on the air for over a decade-- and a host of wanna-be's have joined in the chorus every year. There are right-wing rags in New York and Washington-- and the second-largest newspaper in the country-- running broadsides every day. These people are blatantly partisan and completely unscrupulous. They're perfectly willing to make things up and spit out RNC talking points.

"And the rest of you are so lazy and sloppy and cowardly that you let them get away with it. You're supposed to be checking facts and holding people accountable and enforcing fairness. But the ones who aren't already in bed with them don't have the guts to speak up.

"Which is why two-thirds of the voters think that Iraq planned or executed 9/11-- and why they thought, until a few weeks ago, that we'd found weapons of mass destruction in Iraq. It's why 64% of the voters think they paid too much in capital gains tax, even though less than 30% of the taxpayers pay that tax. It's why people thought their estate taxes were too high--even though virtually no one pays estate taxes.

"Do you point any of that out? Of course not-- in fact, you can't even be bothered to call the Estate Tax by its correct name-- you let the wingnuts rename it the "Death Tax". You let those jackoffs rename our party-- you even let a bunch of chickenhawks question the patriotism of a legislators who actually served their country and did it with distinction.

"You let the Republic Party go on for hours about affirmative action and people who want handouts that they haven't earned. But let one person point out that their 'middle-class' tax cuts go to people earning over $200K and you'll start screaming about 'class warfare'.

"You let one party throw mud for a decade and then wonder why so much of it has stuck? You want a reason, go look in the mirror."

The response to the question illustrated exactly why everyone is where they are in the polls. Howard Dean, Dick Gephardt and Wesley Clark (in descending order) showed the most spunk. Everyone else pretty much curled into whimpering balls and let Greenfield and Judy Woodruff beat on them.

It's pretty simple-- voters think most of what is happening in this country is wrong. People think W. and his Merry Men are marching the country off both the domestioc and foreign policy cliff. The guy who does the best job of pointing this out is going to get the nomination--and if he keeps doing it and does it right, he's going to hammer W. into the ground.

Right now, most of these guys don't have the aggressiveness necessary to finish second to a one-legged man in an ass-kicking contest. They need to kick it up another notch.

1:49 AM

Thursday, October 09, 2003  
Getting Mad, Instead of Even

I have never played well with the people in either the womens civil or gay rights movements, because (like a lot of consultants) I'm concerned more on results than on process or symbolism or statements.

Case in point: Guy in Pennsylvania is selling a 'game' called Ghettopoly. It is exactly what the name sounds like-- and the more details you know about the story,the scummier it gets.

The leaders are upset that the protests aren't being acknowledged and the game is still being sold. So I called a buddy of mine, who has ties to them. Asked him two questions:

1. "Have you guys called Hasbro?"

2. "Is there some special reason you haven't called?"

From what I was told, the issue is that the stores should be acknowledging that the game is racist and be removing it. Which would leave the manufacturer free to sell the game via the internet (I'm sure they could place ads on Trent Lott's site or Augusta National.)

Using copyright law to bring some high-powered attack lawyers down on the manufacturer-- and then punishing the stores for being piggish after the game is off the market-- misses the point.

Yeah, right. I thought the point was to punish the bad guys.

(Credit to Pandagon for bringing the story to my attention.)

12:30 PM

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