Tuesday, January 11, 2005

Community Comments

Sue in Waterbury, Conn replies on Beth's questions about ethics (http://thecommonills.blogspot.com/2005/01/beths-questions-ethical-policies.html):
"I think it does make a ___ big _____ difference. If you've met or know those two [Tom Hayden & Jane Fonda] no wonder you defend them. All I ____ did was point out that he was a traitor and should never _____ be quoted and instead of apologizing for it you turn into a stupid ____ and start playing 'I've got to _____ defend my ______ my friends!'"

Sue had obviously just left choir practice at the church when she dashed off the e-mail, hence the language. Hayden was quoted on Iraq because it was apprortiate. I stated in a note on that post that although it made no difference, I should have disclosed information. I have. And look, here's a Tom Hayden quote:

Once the election was over, the Bush administration turned Falluja into a slaughterhouse – even as the Democrats remained silent and thousands of activists seemed frozen in mourning or internal discussions of what went wrong.
There is a lesson here for progressives. Since the anti-war sentiment was a factor of public opinion during the presidential race that made Bush defer tough decisions, the movement needs to create an even greater force of opposition that will become indigestible, a kind of gallstone in the stomach of power.
If this seems unlikely, one must remember that the war-makers are feverishly trying to manipulate the perceptions of restive Americans. They fear the multitudes. That is why reporters were embedded at the beginning. That is why the toppling of Saddam Hussein's statue on April 9, 2003 was "stage-managed" by the U.S. Army, according to the L.A. Times.
Even the most recent battle of Fallujah was about "the American military intend[ing] to fight its own information war," as the New York Times observed. According to another Times article, the Fallujah hospital was shut down on the first day of the operation because our Army considered it a "source of rumors about heavy casualties." A senior military official called the hospital "a center of propaganda" as scores of patients were being treated.


Beth (on the same post): "I want follow ups!"

Maybe sometime in the future.

Ben (on "Rudith Miller," see http://thecommonills.blogspot.com/2005/01/parody-rudith-miller-weighs-in-on.html): "I'm still laughing. If I ever see Judith Miller, I'll run up to her and say, 'Heather Rain Farrow, is it you!'"

Keesha: "Do you think everyone knew all the names mentioned?"

No, but if they look them up, it may make it funnier. (Or even make it funny.)

Kara: "I'm so upset about the NYT coverage of the Palestinian elections. I don't know anything about it even though I've read every story the paper's printed on it. I feel the coverage was either highly managed or else the reporting was just hideous."

Molly, on the editorial about privacy (http://thecommonills.blogspot.com/2005/01/editorial-comment-ills-does-not-engage.html): "I can't believe that people want you to visit their blogs so that they will become popular but they pay you back for your help by tracking where you were before and where you went after. That doesn't seem appropriate to me. I hope you do not add a counter. If you do, I will no longer visit this site."

Cedric: "If everybody may engage in tracking or most bloggers, what's the big deal?"

See Molly's response directly above your's.

Krista: "I'm glad Why Are We In Iraq? posted a notice but what about everyone else? If you don't declare a policy one way or the other, I'm not visiting your site. I don't mean Common Ills. I mean the other blogs and web sites. I don't have anything to hide but just the idea that someone thinks it's okay to spy on me really ticks me off."

Domnick: "It seems like there should be a law against someone being able to track you on the web without your permission. P.S. I installed Firefox. No problems to report there."

????: "I don't want anyone tracking me. They should have to ask for my permission before even attempting that."

Marcia: "If any bloggers on the left are engaging in this, they need to say so immediately. This goes against every civil liberties belief I thought the left held."

Frank in Orlando (on the missing post from Monday night): "I think you made a lot of strong points but I think the weak one was 'conflict of interest.' I know the panel cited it in their report and you were covering the report but the thing is Leslie Moonves didn't cite that as a reason for firing Mary Mapes. He was perfectly willing to publicly shred her reputation on other details so he obviously didn't consider that point to be an important one even if the panel did. I get your point about how this was a legal review and not a journalistic one. I listened to the two Democracy Now! links about the CNN story and wonder if anyone fired by CBS will have the guts to fight back by making sure their side of the story gets out. I also agree that if Moonves is going to date (or now be married to) Julie Chen she shouldn't be working at the network in the news department. It's too easy for someone to try to kiss a-- to Moonves by giving her easy assignments or booking around her schedule. The board should given him an ultimatum that either she goes or he goes."

Trina: "How a panel filled with lawyers and a former attorney general can decide about the journalism process is just beyond belief to me. As for the Associated Press person, he has no knowledge of what it takes to break a story. The AP traditionally runs spot reporting of breaking news. There are no big investigative storeis coming out of the AP. I don't think anyone on the panel was qualified to pass judgment on journalistic matters."

Rod: "The story's not false and the issue is that some experts passed judgement and then changed their minds? How does the panel know that was under pressure? They don't. Mapes had to make a call and she made it. That she's fired speaks a great deal about the lack of courage at CBS which is no real surprise they are the network that refused to air the Reagan mini-series. Moonves should be ashamed of himself and if anyone should have been fired it should have been him or his wife."

Gore Vidal is God: "I'm so glad that Ruth Conniff is blogging on Mondays! She's a contrarian voice rooted in reality!"

I'm glad too but since you were one of the few who saw that post, no one probably knows what we are talking about. (I'll cut and paste it from my draft of the e-mail onto the blog right after this posts.)

Brad, on the idea of the Times charging people to view stories on the web site (http://thecommonills.blogspot.com/2005/01/new-york-times-floats-idea-of-becoming.html):
"They do that [start charging] and they better be ready to lose a huge bulk of readers. I subscribe and I'll also add that if they think I should pay additional monies each month to view the online site they are ____ nuts!"

Monica: "They build up their name and get a following and now they want to charge? Are they a newspaper making money off ad revenue or are they the playground pusher giving us all a free hit until we're hooked?"

Francisco: "The second they start charging is the second I go elsewhere online."

Molly: "I'm disgusted by the thought that they would charge for access to the online services."

Marc: "Greedy mother ____s. They'll get by without me from now on."

Jack: "It makes no sense to be worried about who might not subscribe in the future when you aren't even meeting the demand for subscriptions in the present."

Denise: "I subscribed because I got used to reading it online! Okay, this is the best I could do on summing up what was wrong with the paper's article about Saturday Night Live. I'm kind of intimidated thinking that this will be online and a lot of people could see it but here goes. The writer Dave Itzkoff seems to know very little about the show and the sexism is apparent in terms like 'alpha-male' and the slams against Tina Fey. He thinks celebrity imitations have reached an all time high now? Did he miss Billy Crystal doing Fernando Lamas and Sammy Davis Jr. among others? Did he miss the 'golden years' when Lariane Newman did Barbra Streisand, Gilda Radner did Barbara Walters, Bruce the shark from Jaws seemed to be in every other scene, Garrett Morris was doing Tina Turner? He cites Chevy Chase doing Gerald Ford but that was just Chevy doing the same thing he did in other skits but calling himself Ford. That wasn't political satire. What about Eddie Murphy doing the spoof on Mr. Rogers? What about all Joe Piscapo's characters like Frank Sinatra? Very few performers have done characters that weren't famous. Even Nora Dunne was doing Leona Helmsley in addition to Pat Stevens, the Sweeny Sisters and assorted others. Will Ferrell wasn't the 'alpha male' in any way other than he did the same character in every skit he got stuck in and because he was a male he got stuck in all of them. Phil Hartman? Has the writer ever heard of him?"

Bernado, on Ron of Why Are We Back In Iraq? being banned from posting at another site(http://thecommonills.blogspot.com/2005/01/why-are-we-back-in-iraq.html): "That makes no since to me at all. What is the point of exchanging ideas if you can't disagree?"

Sue in Waterbury, Conn: "You _____ banned me, you stupid ____. You never quote me. You did the exact same ___ thing!"

Erika: "The site existed to share ideas and it allowed people to post replies but apparently only a certain sort of replies. I would wonder about someone who had the need to hear only ideas that backed up his own beliefs."

Tamara: "This is like that whole push behind George Lakoff. We all are supposed to be reading that book and acting on it and speaking exactly alike and if we don't someone's pitching a fit.
My truth is my truth and I will speak it the way I want to. I'm not really sure that 'good daddy' and 'bad daddy' is the way to go anyway. [Bill] Clinton wasn't a daddy figure. He seemed to connect with voters as one of them. I think it's a male fantasy that we're all longing for the lost daddy. I refuse to fit my remarks into some preplanned blueprint. Lakoff means well and that's fine for people who want to follow him but I'm not going to."

Sam: "Petty posters get pretty pissed and pout and punish when people postulate pointed comments."

Eli: "You either support free speech or you don't. And as I remember, they tried to hack an award category last month. Someone posted the code to hack some web award. Did that person get banned? Ron doesn't like an Air America host and that's a crime? I listen but let me tell you I've listened to many other liberal hosts in my years and I've never found one I agree with everything about. Seems like if you can't take disagreement you should keep your opinions to yourself."

[I hadn't seen the hacking for a web award that Eli was talking about. He e-mailed me a copy. It should be noted that other posters on the site objected to it both out of concerns about honesty and, at least one, out of concerns of how this would play if the right got ahold of the fact that someone was trying to hack the vote.]

Abhilasha: "I'm sorry he was banned and I see no reason for him to be banned."

Tori: "It's either Senator Dumb Butt (http://thecommonills.blogspot.com/2005/01/senator-dumb-butt-on-senator-boxer-and.html) or Alberto Gonzales with his wig hat performing 'Brand New Me' to the Senate (http://thecommonills.blogspot.com/2005/01/who-knew-alberto-gonzaless-secret_07.html) that was the funniest post this week."

Dallas: I'm really enjoying Why Are We Back In Iraq? (http://www.whyareweback.blogspot.com/) and A Winding Road (http://awindingroad.blogspot.com/). Are you going to link to any other bloggers?

First off, Why Are We Back in Iraq? has a post up about something forthcoming re: Ohio:

You might say I've become a little obsessed with elections and votes, lately. Well, that ain't gonna change anytime soon. I have every intention of continuing my work on 50 States Mislead Their Voters, and ~A!'s Watching The Watchers is still on the case, too. Not long ago, ~A! tackled Vermont, and let's just say I might have to subtract one from the title of this series (which is probably why I took so long to link to it...sorry ~A! buddy, but don't you know that 'versy sells). As for me, I'm still stuck in Ohio, but I have a juicy story that I'm working on which might (might...because I am still working on it) be fingering an election official other than everyone's favorite scoundrel, J. Kenneth Blackwell. And, to make things juicier, this e.o. didn't support Dubya in 2004 (at least not directly...if you get my drift).

So watch for that.

As for A Winding Road, they've got a nice piece on the state of the Democratic party and on what's needed (and not needed) in a DNC chair:

As we get closer to the point when the Democrats will be choosing their new party Chairman, I grow more and more concerned about the message the choice is going to send. The Democrats in the United States Senate have already sent out a few potentially dangerous messages of their own to the party base, first with their selection of Anti-Choice Senator Harry Reid to be their Minority Leader, and then with their refusal to stand with Senator Barbara Boxer last week against electoral fraud.
At the rate the Senate Democrats are going, people may begin to think that they like being the Minority Party so much that they're doing whatever they can to stay in the position.In point of fact, though, there is a growing division in people's vision of where the party should head. There is a very real contingent in the United States Congress, as well as outside of it, that truly believe that the way to appeal to the voters and improve their position is to become more like the Republicans.
These are the people who have bought the Republican propaganda hook, line, and sinker and believe that Republican 'ideals'- such as being Anti-Choice- are what the majority of American voters truly want.

Before we leave that thought, let's note that BuzzFlash has news about Howard Dean:

Today, I'm announcing my candidacy for the Chairmanship of the Democratic National Committee.
The Democratic Party needs a vibrant, forward-thinking, long-term presence in every single state and we must be willing to contest every race at every level. We will only win when we show up and fight for the issues important to all of us.
Another integral part of our strategy must be cultivating the party's grassroots. Our long term success depends on all of us taking an active role in our party and in the political process, by volunteering, going door to door and taking the Democratic message into every community, and by organizing at the local level. After all, new ideas and new leaders don't come from consultants; they come from communities.


As for other blogs, yes, we'll link to them. We linked to iddybud last Thursday and hadn't linked to it before. Here's some comments from iddybud today:

We need you more than ever. Keep it real. Keep truth alive. America needs you if you care about truth. We've already seen most truth bled from the mainstream vein of journalism. Our democracy's future rests with you, Progressive Bloggers. This is no easy task, and Heaven knows it's not a thankful or economically lucrative job. But when you think about the big-time cable journalists raking in their far-more-than-decent payday while touting their cherry-picked headlines (I just saw one about Kim Jong-il's hair on MSNBC complete with a playing of the song "God Bless The USA") and giving the political elite endless (hot)-air time, and then you look at the measly little blogger expecting no reward and loving her country and the world's people enough to care to be here working day in/day out - -

But Com, I don't blog. You write this site (common_ills@yahoo.com) to be quoted or not, and you're registering your opinion. We're all a part of The Common Ills community.

And one of our members created his own blog last week (A Winding Road). Rebecca, another member, created her's today. (This post was delayed because she needed some advice on "settings" and "templates." I wasn't much help but happy to pass on the very little I knew.)

Rebecca's site is called Sex and Politics and Screeds and Attitude. And it's not a work safe site:

if anyone's coming here from the common ills let me warn you that i will use every word in the book and then some. if i am going to blog, i'm not going to censor my thoughts or words.

So heads up on that. Those who've complained that I'm an Air America or Unfiltered cheerleader should know that they'll probably enjoy her comments on Unfiltered in her first blog entry:

and it's growing increasing hard to listen to unfiltered. that's an air america radio show hosted by lizz winstead and rachel maddow who are quickly becoming lizz whiney and rachel mellow.since the election they've mistaken themselves for a lifestyle show and started offering up pet tips and taking calls on that as well as a sexist author who wasn't funny and didn't make for good radio. whiney & mellow were at a loss for what to do when that backfired on them and they seemed to pull katherine from al's show out of thin air to try to save that very bad, very ugly friday.unfiltered wasn't always a bad show. they used to do comedy bits that were funny. these days they trot out their 'fcc assigned clergy' and think it's funny. it's not funny. it might have been funny the first time. but as a 'bit' it's grown very stale.

Those are Rebecca's opinions and we don't all have to agree or disagree. Some of you will, some of you won't. She's a member and, as she notes, she's been e-mailing this site for awhile and I've always asked to quote her but she wasn't comfortable with being quoted. Doing a blog is a big step for her so let's be supportive in our comments. (That's not to say you can't disagree with her, just try to focus your disagreement on opinions and not an attack on a person if you're able to. If you're not, well respond as you please, we support free speech.)