<!-- Begin meta tags generated by ORblogs --> </meta name="keywords" content="progressive, liberal, politics, government, edit, language, grammar, accuracy, honesty, clarity, world, news, media" /> </> <!-- End meta tags generated by ORblogs -->> Editor at Large: January 2008

Monday, January 28, 2008

McCain and Romney exchange the ultimate insult

What is the ultimate insult? The L word.

No, not lesbian, you pervert. Liberal.

“If you ask people, ‘Look at the three things Senator McCain has done as a senator,’ if you want that kind of a liberal Democratic course as president, then you can vote for him. But those three pieces of legislation, those aren’t conservative, those aren’t Republican, those are not the kind of leadership that we need as we go forward.”

“The truth is, Mitt Romney was a liberal governor of Massachusetts who raised taxes, imposed with Ted Kennedy a big government mandate health care plan that is now a quarter of a billion dollars in the red, and managed his state’s economy incompetently, leaving Massachusetts with less job growth than 46 other states.”

Why is "liberal" such an insult? Silly! Because it means "open to new behavior or opinions; favorable to or respectful of individual rights and freedoms; and favoring maximum individual liberty in political and social reform," of course. Would you want to be accused of such lunacy?

Lunacy. Now there's a good L word.


Friday, January 25, 2008

Bigfoot spotted on Mars

Or is it Jesus?

The Virgin Mary?


Osama bin Laden?

Watch the video and decide for yourself.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Funniest answer yet in Democratic debates

During yesterday's Democratic debate on CNN, Barack Obama was asked about "novelist Toni Morrison's salute to Bill Clinton as 'the first black President.'"

Obama's reply: "I would have to investigate more Bill's dancing abilities and some of this other stuff before I accurately judged whether he was, in fact, a brother."

Hillary Clinton's response: "I am sure that can be arranged."


Friday, January 18, 2008

Mike Huckabee wants to shove a flagpole up your a**

Defending South Carolina's right to display the confederate flag on public grounds, former Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee said:
You don't like people from outside the state coming in and telling you what to do with your flag. If somebody came to Arkansas and told us what to do with our flag, we'd tell them what to do with the pole; that's what we'd do.

This is the "nice guy" who won Iowa?

Thursday, January 17, 2008

The symbolism of a sword

What do you see in this photo of President Bush wielding a Saudi sword - a playful moment, or a symbol of unspeakable atrocities?

Last year, the House of Saud conducted at least 136 public beheadings using a sword like this. Condemned convicts are brought into a courtyard, hands tied, and forced to bow before an executioner, who swings his sword while onlookers cry, "Allahu Akbar!" (God is great).

The Saudis decapitate criminals, apostates, foreigners, homosexuals, Christians, women, and even children. Many of those who are beheaded are found guilty without due process, using shoddy evidence. The "convicted" criminal is injected with a cocktail of drugs in order to prevent the decapitated body from scurrying around and spraying blood all over the audience.

So here is our president, holding a sword just like the ones used by Saudi executioners to decapitate homosexuals, Christians, women, and children. The same president who invaded and occupied Iraq even though the House of Saud helped to finance the 9/11 attacks. The same president who preaches peace and democracy while peddling $20 billion worth of weapons and bombs to one of the least peaceful, most undemocratic countries on earth. The same president who himself ordered a record number of executions while he was governor of Texas.

Again: a playful moment, or a symbol of unspeakable atrocities?


Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Update on that Iranian boat "attack"

Interesting how storylines can either evolve or devolve over time. This one is definitely devolving: everyone is disowning the claim that the Iranian speedboats ever posed a threat and that the Navy ships were "close to firing" upon them.

As one official said, "It's...surprising that President Bush was permitted to get so far out in front on this issue, even though there were significant uncertainties on what transpired." Ya think?

Raw Story has more.

(Hat tip to EWD.)

Monday, January 14, 2008

A president who makes love, not war

Joan Z. Shore, in today's Huffington Post:
But before I forget, here's another reason why I love France: Nicolas Sarkozy. He is arrogant, impatient, self-serving, intolerant, and vindictive. He botched two marriages, and is said to be an incorrigible womanizer and a bad father. But he has fallen in love -- again! -- with a dead-ringer for his second ex, and he is shamelessly flaunting his romance. His compatriots -- even those who voted for him -- and the members of his government are stunned and outraged.

Nicolas and Carla will probably be married next month, and there are rumors already that she is pregnant. And they only met seven weeks ago!

So why do I like this man? Because I prefer, by far, a president who makes love....not war.

Friday, January 11, 2008

The Filipino Monkey is back!

Could the "Filipino Monkey" be the source of the fake Iranian voice that said, "I am coming to you...you will explode in a few minutes"? If this has been going on for at least 20 years now, why wasn't a "Filipino Monkey" the first suspect? Check out this article from the LA Times, dated November 12, 1987:

Los Angeles Times
November 12, 1987

A cargo ship was sailing through the Strait of Hormuz recently when it was challenged by an Iranian warship demanding to know what it carried.

Iranian gunboats in these waters frequently attack vessels they suspect of carrying war materials to Iraq, and for the crew of the cargo ship, it was a tense moment.

"What is your cargo? What is your cargo?" the voice of an Iranian officer crackled over the radio.

Before the ship's captain could respond, a third voice came on the air: "I am carrying machine guns and hand grenades to Iraq . . . and the atom bomb."

The Filipino Monkey had struck again.

Jokes and Taunts

Sailors in this part of the world are by now well-acquainted with the rogue radio operator who calls himself "The Filipino Monkey." He has been interjecting jokes and taunts into radio conversations between ships at the southern end of the Persian Gulf for at least three years.

But as the Iran-Iraq War escalates and tensions rise, with the warships of several nations patrolling the gulf on a hair-trigger state of alert, the Filipino Monkey has become more than just an occasionally amusing annoyance.

"He's dangerous," one gulf-based shipping source said. "He gets on the radio when ships are being challenged, and some of the things he tells the Iranians could provoke an attack."

Most of what he tells the Iranians is unprintable.

'Doesn't Like Iranians'

"Whoever he is, he doesn't seem to like Iranians very much," the shipping source said. "He tells them what he thinks of them in graphic terms."

Memories vary, but most shipping sources who have listened to the Monkey say they first heard him about three years ago.

"He started out by playing music and then by taunting other seamen, usually Filipinos, with curses in the middle of the night," one official recalled.

Other seamen would respond in kind until the airwaves were alive with colorful arguments in various accents of English. This livened things up during the lonely and monotonous graveyard shifts in the gulf, and so for a time nobody much minded the Monkey's technically illegal activities. His transmissions were an abusive, but harmless, form of entertainment.

Dark Humor

But since the arrival of U.S. warships and an increase in Iranian challenges to shipping at the southern end of the gulf, the Monkey's mischief has assumed a darker side.

"I don't know whether he's trying to make trouble or whether he's simply an idiot who doesn't understand the implications of what he is doing, but either way he is a real hazard to commercial shipping," a former ship captain said.

One case in point is another recent encounter between an Iranian gunboat and a merchant vessel near the Strait of Hormuz last month. When the gunboat challenged the vessel, demanding to know its destination, the Filipino Monkey broke in and replied: "I go to your mother's house. . . . "

The encounter ended peaceably, apparently because the Iranian captain was also familiar with the Monkey's antics.

Search Under Way

But the recurrence of such incidents has moved officials of the United Arab Emirates to mount a search for the Monkey. According to shipping sources, Ministry of Communications officials have been checking on shore-based two-way radios in recent weeks to make sure they are licensed.

"They are trying to narrow down where this guy might be broadcasting from," one shipping executive said.

Catching the Monkey is not proving to be easy, however, because there are hundreds of possible locations for his transmitter, including ships, supply boats, tugs, oil platforms and shore-based facilities.

Also, there may be more than one Monkey. Because he has been broadcasting for far longer than any normal tour of duty for seamen or oil workers in the gulf, officials think the Filipino Monkey has spawned imitators and that there may now be more than one radio operator using the same moniker.

Many Monkeys?

"Everyone has their own theories about how many Monkeys there are and where he or they are based," said Margaret Rogg, a reporter for CBS who frequently monitors marine radio traffic. "My own image of him is that he's someone with a lot of time on his hands, maybe someone who's handicapped and has nothing to do but play with his radio all day."

Whoever he is, the Filipino Monkey's sing-song voice is also becoming familiar to U.S. sailors in the gulf.

Early last month, for instance, he broke into the middle of a tense radio exchange between a U.S. ship and an Iranian warship.

The Iranian ship had locked its weapons radar onto the U.S. warship, which was warning it in no uncertain terms to stand down. The warning was repeated three times until the Filipino Monkey added his own.

"Iranian warship, Iranian warship," he said. "You gonna get it now."

(Hat tip to EWD.)

Thursday, January 10, 2008

No concupiscent teenager left behind

Colorado just turned down $500,000 in federal funds for abstinence-only education. Fools...that money could have bought 50,000 of these...
Slender Massager

Great Value!

* Single speed
* Strong motor for excellent sensation
* Convenient 7" size for easy storage

Measures: 7" x 1 1/8." Requires 2 "C" batteries, not included.

Hey, it worked for Hillary!

Well, that didn't take long. Mitt Romney became the first "copycat sobster" yesterday when he "choked up" at a rally in Michigan. From today's NY Times:
Earlier in the day, after hearing from a voter who recalled his father, Mr. Romney choked up momentarily, according to a pool reporter who was present. “He was a great man, and I miss him dearly,” Mr. Romney said.

Anyone care to place bets on who will be next?

Wednesday, January 09, 2008

Bush issues fake threat in response to fake attack

President Bush is wearin' his cowboy hat again.

But c'mon...even if the video and audio of the Iran boat incident are authentic (see video below), did those tiny little Iranian speed boats ever present a real threat to our freaking gigantic battleships? Even if they were able to ram one of the ships and dent its hull, wouldn't that be more an act of adolescent vandalism than an act of real aggression?

And what were our ships doing in their waters in the first place?

Who provoked whom?

What happened in New Hampshire?

According to nearly all the polls, Obama was supposed to have won New Hampshire in a landslide. How did Hillary pull off the win? Was it a result of her highly publicized "emotional meltdown"? Did she somehow manage to rig the vote? Were the pollsters simply all wrong?

Pollster John Zogby has several possible explanations.

UPDATE: Comedian Will Durst has yet another - very plausible - theory:
It was not a polling glitch.... It was a...form of prejudice detritus known as “the Bradley Effect.”

In 1982, Los Angeles Mayor Tom Bradley, an African-American, was 10 points ahead in the polls the day before his California Gubernatorial election against George Deukmejian. 10 points ahead. Day before the election. He lost. Sound familiar?

To add insult to injury, Bradley led in the EXIT polls. Which means people not only lied about how they were going to vote, they lied about how they did vote. Proof positive that something crazy happens inside the heads of white people when they get behind that polling curtain.

Why didn’t the “Bradley Effect” rear its ugly head in Iowa? Simple. We’re not talking about racism, we’re talking about nervousness. A fear that attacks your marrow in the dark. In Iowa, everyone watches you vote. No curtain to hide behind in a caucus. You bunch in a corner in full sight of all your neighbors under a bright fluorescent light. In New Hampshire, it’s just you and your demons. Your inner New England
demons. And hope tends to dissipate in those lonely enclosures. No matter how warm the January night, it gets dark at five up there. Northwoods dark, where shadows trump hope.

The difference was women over 40. Which, forgive me, but in both New Hampshire and Iowa means white women. In the Hawkeye State, they went with the black guy in the wide open. In the Granite State, behind the curtain, they chose the white woman. I know. I know. I know. Sacrilege! Implying discrimination exists in America today. Blaspheme! Accusing DEMOCRATS of possible prejudice. Heresy! But its not bigotry so much as it is dread. Suffice to say that in the last six years, we’ve been taught to fear. Bang! Salivate.

One can only hope the Clinton campaign understands this and doesn’t convince themselves it was their wacky emotional leakage weekend strategy that turned the tide, because that would mean 10 months of Bill shrieking and Hillary keening, and nobody wants that. The only thing worse would be to go on pretending this Effect does not exist, because future opponents are already drawing up plans to ramp it up.

Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Barack Obama is a black Muslim communist insurgent!

Get ready, everybody. If Obama wins New Hampshire, we'll be hearing a lot more from Fox News and the right-wing noise machine about madrassas (which Obama never attended), Obama's middle name (Hussein), “Osama, er, I mean Obama” (snicker snicker), and not-so-thinly veiled racism. This video by Robert Greenwald (who produced "Outfoxed") provides just a glimpse of what lies ahead.

Friday, January 04, 2008

Crikey! Terri Irwin gives OSU $1 million for whale research

This is good news for whales and whale lovers: Terri Irwin, former Eugene resident and widow of “Crocodile Hunter” Steve Irwin, is giving OSU more than $1 million to tag, track, and research endangered whales.