Tag: issues

On Shame As A Tactic, Or, Betsie Gallardo: She Won…And So Can You!

We have been following the story of Betsie Gallardo lately, she being the woman that, due to a medical decision, was being starved to death in a Florida prison.

She has inoperable cancer, her death is imminent, and her mother was working hard to make it possible for Betsie to die at home with some dignity.

As we reported just a couple days ago, half the battle was already won, as the Florida Department of Corrections had agreed to place her in a hospital so that she could again go back on nutritional support.

On January 5th, the Florida Parole Commission voted to allow her to end her life at home-and that means you spoke out, made a difference, and achieved a complete victory for the effort.

But even as we celebrate that victory, I think we should take a moment to realize that there is a bigger lesson here: the lesson that the fights over “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” (DADT), benefits for 9/11 first responders (the Zadroga Bill), and Betsie Gallardo’s imminent release are all actually pointing us to a political strategy that works, over and over, if we are willing to understand the wisdom that’s been laid before us.

is there a point to pointlessness?

There could be a point, a moment in which you look around your home. There are perhaps pictures or paintings hanging on walls. Pots and pans in the kitchen. A dozen pair of shoes and rows of hangers holding shirts and pants in a bedroom closet. Not to mention assorted potted plants. Lamps. Shades. Nicknacks. All that infrastructure. All those things . . .

Anyway. That point, that moment could happen: looking around your place and it all goes funny. It hits soft, at first, this simple thought: maybe… maybe it’s all a bit ridiculous. Slightly absurd. The idea that a thing could hold value. Have meaning. Or stir memory.

It goes further. I’m in a wheel upon which I run. The wheel keeps turning because I keep running on it. I can’t stop running. Actually, I don’t know how to stop. Or how to get off the wheel. I don’t think I’m trapped. In fact, I think I’m free. And yet, I can’t get off the wheel.



The Maddow Movement: Final Petition Push

In the perhaps quixotic quest to Free The Press of some of the worst features of  corporate hegemony over the very information we live and breathe, The Maddow Movement was born. With no illusions of anything but a starting point in fighting the influence of those who would narrow our perceptions through the presentation of Military Analyst Propaganda…or allow themselves to be cowed and complicit stenographers (alternately: “deferential, complicit enablers” ) of and for the lies that led us to Iraq and the death of perhaps a million people…or did NOT choose to investigate torture…or treason….a campaign was launched to throw out the old guard and hail and herald the new.

1229 good souls have signed The Maddow Movement Petition. Untold numbers of E-mails have been sent. Today…you too can help!

Now! (please?)


Not only will you be helping to get a fresh honest perspective inserted into the stale and stilted puditry that has helped to lead our country to ad over the brink of …really bad stuff…you will be flexing your muscle as a news and information consumer! You will be showing the corporate heads and the programmers that there is a demand for better reporting, analysis and just plain  intelligence (Ms Maddow = Rhodes Scholar) in their “industry.”

“People get the government they deserve,” de Tocqueville said…the same goes for information! In our world today, we consumers (formerly know as ‘citizens) will only get what we demand from those who would be our corporate masters…Yell Louder!

And get thee hither to signeth yon petition and send ye your e-mails!

[email protected]

The Maddow Movement: Maddow vs Scotty McClellan?

As per Keith’s explicit instructions and broad wink indicating that The Maddow Movement had already succeeded before we even started it. (are we powerful or what???)


The Maddow Movement is pretty much over/redundant. I plan on making one last little push in the next few days for signatures on the petition, and then sending it to the PTB at NBC, just to make sure they know how much we support them in giving Rachel her own show. Thanks for all your help, that was fun! And now we can move on to the next steps of the Free The Press campaign.

Which got a big boost today (as brobin posts about here) from none other than former Bush Press Deceiver little Scotty McClellan! The Pillsbury Lie Boy has a new book out and the Politico has excerpts, wherein the star of the Scotty Show comes right out and says what we all know. That the WH Pess Corps was “too easy on the administration during the run-up to the war.” (as Politico phrased it) Greenwald has another devastating semi-quote “deferential, complicit enablers” of Bush administration “propaganda.” Btw, if you haven’t yet, read Greenwald!

In other words…the WH Press Corp are not much more (with the exception of St Helen Of Thomas) than lap dog stenographers without the necessary brains or gumption to really challenge the daily damburst of lies, evasions, and spun half truths spewing forth from the halls of tyranny.

The Maddow Movement: Help Edit the Petition!

Last Friday night, Rachel Maddow guest hosted for KO on Countdown. Not only did she do a great job….she won the time slot in the key 25-54 year old demographic! The one that advertisers value most. You can watch the whole show on Youtube (click on the vid to take you to the Youtube page) and below is the Dkos diary with the numbers. For such a bare diary, it spent a very long time on the reclist, showing Rachel’s popularity by yet another metric.

Home Run for Rachel Maddow, by Tod

Below the fold: We have found an online petition site, now all we have to do is write the petition! Below is a draft for you to give input on. Once we have the petition set and in place…the next step is to start publishing the link to it wherever we can. That will be the official kick off of the Maddow Movment, Yeehaw! Suggestions are more than welcome!

Support the Detainee Basic Medical Care Act of 2008

An action alert from Physicians for Human Rights:

We urge you to write your Senators and Representative today to support the Detainee Basic Medical Care Act of 2008.

Shocking exposés this week by the New York Times, Washington Post, and 60 Minutes have confirmed the alarming breakdown in health care for detained asylum seekers and other immigrants in custody of the office of Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), resulting in needless suffering and, in the most tragic cases, avoidable death.

Free the Press: The Maddow Movement! A Policy Statement

Rachel Maddow says:

The real issue is story selection, is editorial control. I can only control what it is that I get asked to speak about in a very blunt way. That said, the way that I handle that is that I, I am gunning to get my own show. I would really like to be hosting a show on cable television, rather than guesting because I would like to exert more control over what gets discussed, over what counts as important.


The Press, the Fourth Estate, is the gatekeeper of Truth in our country. If the Press does not report it, it effectively never happened as far as the all important reaction of the citizenry is concerned. Where the Press shines it’s light, freedom follows.

Where the press is free and every man able to read, all is safe.

Thomas Jefferson

Information is the currency of democracy.

Thomas Jefferson

This has never been better demonstrated than during the reign of George Bush. The Press has not only blinded its own light in regards to scandalous crimes, it has on far too many occasions, such as the lead up to the Iraq Occupation and domestic spying, and in the latest iteration of the military analysts, actually aided and abetted in the criminal acts and despicable propaganda activities of the Worst President Ever. The Bush Administration has corrupted both the Press and the Justice Department to such an extent that is has literally, in the case of its Torture activities, gotten away with murder. It is up to us as citizens to do what we can to stop this. To take back our government and to restore a Free Press.

Free The Press! McCain’s “Grace Period”

Dis grace ful

Washington Post’s Balz: Media will scrutinize McCain ‘once the general election really begins.’

Wash. Post’s Murray: ‘Just wait’ until after the primaries for media to scrutinize McCain.

Russert: ‘In Time,’ McCain Will ‘Receive The Same Scrutiny’ From The Media As Obama And Clinton

RUSSERT: We get flooded with e-mails, Senator McCain making a mistake on Shia versus Sunni, making mistake about the first Persian Gulf War and the second vis-a-vis oil. His own relationship with Pastor Hagee and why isn’t that talked about and reported on the way Reverend Wright’s relationship with Senator Obama is talked about. But all that in time. I mean, it is only May. This has been going on for some time but it will be a long, long campaign. And when Senator McCain is back in the media’s light, he’ll receive the same scrutiny.


Preliminary Feedback Thread…Free The Press!… The Maddow Movement!

OK, I am struggling a bit and need y’alls help/feedback! As I have said, I think it is vitally important to start concentrating on the media, to bring whatever influence we in the blogosphere can to bear on this essential tool for public oversight.

The issue is highlighted right now by the fine, fine work Greenwald and others are doing on the military analyst scandal. (Which, like all things dirty about this administration, seems to have Karl’s fingerprints on it.)

The first struggle, a name for the overall campaign. Something not overly confrontational to their fragile egos…such as Eat The Media!!! but still exciting. I like Free The Press!


But am open to other suggestions. What say you all?

Next…resources. Do any of you fine people want to volunteer to put together a media contact list for the major cable news shows and news directors? If you can come up with a neato format, all the better, but if someone just puts a list together, some other kind soul could volunteer to put it in a handy dandy format. Ideally we would like to end up with a box we can put on the side panel like the contact Congress box. Alternatively, if you know of a good existing list, please link!

On to the Maddow Movement and some serendipitous surfing! >>>>

Media War Is Over! ……heh

Subtitle: Thoughts on effectively changing the media.

Thought One: Calling a campaign to change/reform the media a ‘media war’ is not the way to effectively change the media! Frontal attacks on massive egos are rarely effective…..by themselves. Of course we desperately need voices such as the inestimable Monsieur hornbeck telling it like it is…

What these Beltway Butt Kissing Access Whore Media MORANS don’t get is that people don’t buy their bullshit anymore.

……to keep up the bad cop pressure. But the blogosphere has bee railing against the antics of Pumpkinhead and Tweety for years now.


Without much effect. The punditroids expect and are used to the blogosphere attacking them, they have vaccinated themselves with rationalization and denial and are very good at ignoring all but the most strident attacks. But! When the blogosphere united on the specific issue of Matthews’ sexism it did have an effect, and elicited a near apology! But it didn’t really change the Uber-narrative.

So…maybe more good cop? Maybe it is time to try massage them….massaging their narrative?

Oil Predictions

This is a re-post from my word press blog and just wanted to see if anyone wanted to predict the future.

A Japanese oil tanker was damaged Monday when it was attacked by a small boat in Middle Eastern waters off the coast of Yemen, the tanker’s owner said. Word of the attack helped to drive world oil prices to a new record.

The attack rattled the nerves of global energy traders, sending the price of benchmark light, sweet crude to a record $117.40 per barrel. Oil prices had also briefly touched $117 per barrel last week, after rebels attacked a pipeline in Nigeria, Africa’s largest oil producer.

Okay this is a daily occurrence, but now I want to start a prediction that oil will hit $125 a barrel by July 4th.  Anybody else want to join in?  Come on what you got to lose?

What The Reverand Said

I know that a month ago Obama’s pastor said somethings that have the media just cannot move past.  They say how appalling it is that an American would say such negative things about their country.  They especially have a hard on for his statement that the US brought the attack on themselves.  Of course, that would be a no-no to the corporate media and they just cannot understand why he would say such a thing.

Please, these people are idiots!  we are observing the 40th anniversary of the death of Martin Luther King and his accomplishments.  as we should, there is not a more deserving person than he.  I know you want to know where this is going…

A year before his death the Rev. Martin Luther king, jr, made a speech on the war in Vietnam, in that speech he said “….that he felt he must speak out against the biggest purveyor of violence in the world…..my own government…”  (this a paraphrase}.  So my point is that even MLK made speeches about the policies of the US.  His words were different than those of Rev. Wright, but none the less the sentiment is the same.

So may I suggest unless the media wants to degrade an American hero, then let the speech go, on both of these men.  The country is trying to move pass the crap of the media, but there are some that want to keep beating a dead mule.  This is no longer newsworthy, it is no bordering on propaganda.

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