May 2008 archive

Donna Brazile before the DNC Rules Panel: “My Mama Taught Me to Play by the Rules” Updated

Perhaps the most poignant statement of today’s DNC Rules Panel, was offered by Donna Brazile, Superdelegate and Panel Committee Member. Brazile’s comment came as a counter to Governor Blanchard, Hillary Clinton supporter. Blanchard denies the Michigan election was a “flawed primary” as Congressman Bonior and others pointed out:

“You must NOT turn you back on our loyal state,” said Blanchard. The candidates taking their names off the ballot “was a knowing, willing decision. It doesn’t make the election flawed. It makes a flawed strategy.”

Brazile, driving home the obvious, stated that “Changing the rules in the middle of the game is called cheating.”

Donna Brazile: “My Mama Taught Me to Play by the Rules.”

Societal Murder

Last night, as I sat at my computer, an unholy stench came into the house and offended my olfactory nerves.  It smelt of sewage, and something worse, but it seemed to come from outside.  We have skunks in the neighborhood, and raccoons, so I assumed one of them had died or otherwise made some kind of mess.  As it turns out. it was something far worse, and profoundly sad.

A few minutes ago I learned that Ernie, the crazy hermit who lived across the street, died some time between Wednesday and yesterday.  I’m betting Wednesday or Thursday, judging by the odor.  The coroner had to be called in after a neighbor called the police to check up on him.  Ernie had been a shut-in, one of those mental cases that collects shit, unopened mail, and assorted garbage over the decades.  It was likely Ernie’s corpse I smelled last night as the process of decay took hold-though according to my mother it was more likely the stench of Ernie’s collected feces.  Funny thing is, the coroner didn’t arrive until after midnight, and by then I was asleep.  I tend to be woken up by sirens and flashing lights, but I guess the sleep of ages had taken hold of me because I dozed right through it.  They all must have come right around the time I turned in for the night, which was after eleven.

I imagine this shall make the newspaper: “Crazy old guy dies in his own filth on Cleveland’s West Side.”  What a depressing train of thought.  This man, who probably should have been institutionalized decades ago, instead lived in the same house he lived in with his mother and became that most awful of social outcasts, the sort that just becomes the harmless yet deranged individual that maybe a neighbor treats with compassion and sympathy, but everyone else ignores.

How low have we sunk as a society to let this go on?  How many Ernies shall die, undiscovered for days, weeks, months-perhaps even years, having spent their entire lives in squalor and the hell of mental illness?  How long will the Ignored be forced to go without the care they need, before we wake up and start providing it?  They are the Outcast, the Ignored, the Least Among Us.  They are the people Jesus implored us to look after, for we are judged by how we treat them.  Jesus…what would He say to us if He were to return today?  This country, which lies to itself that it is a Christian nation, what would Christ Himself say of us?

But we’re not supposed to ask ourselves these questions.  We’re not supposed to acknowledge just how cruel, unforgiving, depraved, greedy, selfish, without compassion, apathetic, materialistic, and oblivious we are.  Because if we do, then we accept that at some point we must take responsibility for our crimes, and for those who cannot take care of themselves.

In the meantime, Ernie-and all those like him-go on, needing help but not getting it.  We let them die; we let them expire alone, unloved, uncared for.  We are all guilty of this form of societal murder.

Weekend News Digest

Weekend News Digest is an Open Thread!

Don’t let the 57 stories intimidate you.

From Yahoo News Top Stories

1 Al-Qaida’s stance on women sparks extremist debate

By LAUREN FRAYER, Associated Press Writer

1 hour, 31 minutes ago

CAIRO, Egypt – Muslim extremist women are challenging al-Qaida’s refusal to include – or at least acknowledge – women in its ranks, in an emotional debate that gives rare insight into the gender conflicts lurking beneath one of the strictest strains of Islam.

In response to a female questioner, al-Qaida No. 2 leader Ayman Al-Zawahri said in April that the terrorist group does not have women. A woman’s role, he said on the Internet audio recording, is limited to caring for the homes and children of al-Qaida fighters.

His remarks have since prompted an outcry from fundamentalist women, who are fighting or pleading for the right to be terrorists. The statements have also created some confusion, because in fact suicide bombings by women seem to be on the rise, at least within the Iraq branch of al-Qaida.

While “defending its honor”, MSM still dropping the ball

For starters, I only use “MSM” in the title because “corporate media” or “infotainment media” wouldn’t fit.  That being said, the sad irony of the press corps which once again shows how out of touch the village idiots are with reality is that, despite all of the huffing and puffing about how Scott McClellan wouldn’t let them do their jobs, they still are falling flat on their faces at every turn.

I’d use the term jumped the shark (hyperlinked for those who don’t know what it means) to describe them and their role in the whole “reporting the news and professional journalism” thing that they clearly have long given up but I think the term “jump the shark” has kind of jumped the shark…

Another Day, Another Corrupt McCain Advisor

Maverick McCainIt hardly seems that a day goes by without a new revelation of lobbyists in John McCain’s campaign. Last week I reported that, so far this year, five tainted staffers have had to resign. Still on the McCain wagon are uber-lobbyists Charlie Black and campaign manager Rick Davis. Media Matters has compiled a superb list of even more tainted McCain staffers

Now the Washington Post is reporting another unethical, and perhaps illegal, McCain relationship with a political benefactor: Citizens Against Government Waste. CAGW has a long history with McCain. They have endorsed his candidacy for president, heralded him as a “Taxpayer Hero” and contributed $11,000 to his campaign. The Post article describes an even deeper partnership that potentially violates election law prohibiting coordination between campaigns and independent advocacy groups. needs your help! w/poll!

Sure, it’s a bit to the libertarian side for me (libertarians being anarchists whithout conviction (!)), but on the other side of things, Justin Raimondo is somewhat of an Obama fan.

Why you wanna treat me so bad?

Dear Mr. Nelson:

I have a fucking BONE to pick with you.

I am one of the original Principals. I hipped to you back when you had a song that kind of stood out from the rest of the polyethylene mirrored ball disco that was all over the HAA HAA HAA HAA stayin alive stayin alive radio at the time. It was called, “I Wanna Be Your Lover.”

It was all rock star idol city a while after that, when you reminded me of your existence with “Controversy.” I went back and caught “Dirty Mind”, that was – and is – a “Dark Side/Sgt Pepper’s” level album with me. So is “1999.”  I rode in the Little Red Corvette. I was Delirious. I GOT what you meant by “Lady Cabdriver.” How many people can make that claim? I fucking GOT it.

You dropped thousands of flowers on my head at the Cow Palace. You probably gave me a touch of permanent hearing loss that night.

You were my fucking HERO.

But now?

What the fuck, dude?


You done fucked up. You’re fucking me over, and I do NOT take kindly to it.

But I’m here to tell you – there’s something else.

I’m gonna go all Scotty on your ass.

Below the fold.

God Switches His Party Affiliation from Republican to Democrat

For many years God was a registered independent.  He mainly spoke to the government through Reverend Billy Graham, who has met with and advised every president from Harry Truman through George W. Bush.  Graham has seldom been publicly political, and according to Wikipedia:

Politically, Graham has been a registered member of the Democratic Party and leaned Republican during the presidency of his friend Richard Nixon.  He has not completely allied himself with the religious right, saying that Jesus did not have a political party.  He does not openly endorse political candidates, but he has given his support to some over the years.

He refused to join Jerry Falwell’s Moral Majority in 1979, saying: “I’m for morality, but morality goes beyond sex to human freedom and social justice. We as clergy know so very little to speak with authority on the Panama Canal or superiority of armaments. Evangelists cannot be closely identified with any particular party or person. We have to stand in the middle in order to preach to all people, right and left.”

Liars on the Radio, Liars on TV, Liars Driving Cadillacs to Washington DC

With apologies to Gilbert Shelton who wrote The Day I Set My Chickens Free.

Funny how when anybody speaks the unvarnished truth they sound like a left wing blogger.  Go figure.

National Conference on Media Reform 2008

OK, I’m psyched. Next weekend (June6-8), thanks to a tip from pfiore8, I’m going to attend the National Conference on Media Reform 2008 that is taking place here in the Twin Cities. Here’s a peak:

When I registered, I was asked whether I was representing a particular organization and what my position was there. I registered as a “Contributing Editor” at Docudharma (kewl, huh?), so I’ll be your eyes and ears at this event.

Pony Party: Your Morning Art

Although Degas was often considered an Impressionist, because he had a loose association with them, he did not consider himself so. He was born into a relatively wealthy family and had conservative social attitudes.

His work constantly evolved and he was influenced by a diversity of styles including prints from Japan. He was also known as a painter of dancers. Degas painted ordinary scenes in working class life and horse racecourses and jockeys.

I have a confession: if you gave me a choice between being an influential political leader/activist and an artist with actual talent I would choose to be an artist. Not the sort of thing one should admit on a progressive political blog, huh? But it is early and quiet and nobody is listening.

I just like this song. It is early morningish….

Please don’t rec pony party. Hang out, chit chat and then go read some of the excellent offerings on our recent and rec’d list.

Docudharma Times Saturday May 31

Aerial Photographs

Prove Existence Of A Shrub

In The White House

Do Not Contact

Saturday’s Headlines:    Presidential primary brings attention, frustration to Puerto Rico   Drug Massacre Leaves a Mexican Town Terrorized   Post-Ponzi scheme, Grenada to reopen for offshore banking   North Korean film that a hero finds too painful to watch    China says 200,000 evacuated because of flood risk    Nuclear bomb blueprints for sale on world black market, experts fear  Battle of Mont St Michel erupts – and it’s all about car parks   For Israelis, Golan is home, not a bargaining chip    Iraq operation gives Basra a reprieve  

Burma policy costs lives, says US

US Defence Secretary Robert Gates has accused Burma of causing the loss of tens of thousands of lives by hindering international cyclone relief efforts.

Mr Gates said the United States had had ships and aircraft ready to help after Cyclone Nargis hit a month ago.

Unlike Indonesia and Bangladesh after major natural disasters, Burma had denied entry to the country, he said.

An estimated 2.4m people remain homeless and hungry following the cyclone, which struck on 2 May.


Democrats Meet Today To Hash Out Fla., Mich.

By Dan Balz

Washington Post Staff Writer

Saturday, May 31, 2008; Page A01

When Democratic Party leaders voted on Aug. 25, 2007, to sanction Florida Democrats for moving up the date of their presidential primary, no one anticipated that the decision would lead to a tense showdown that will help decide the outcome of the nomination battle between Sens. Barack Obama and Hillary Rodham Clinton.

Today, the 30 members of the Democratic National Committee’s Rules and Bylaws Committee will hear challenges to that decision and a later ruling, which together barred delegations from Florida and Michigan from the national convention in Denver because those states violated the party’s rules governing the nomination process.

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