Tuesday, November 29, 2005


Consider it a link-fest.

There wasn't a post last night. My mail is always delayed. Yesterday brought, mag wise, Rolling Stone, three Nations (you read that correctly, three -- not not three copies of the same issue), The New Yorker and The Progressive. I was attempting to catch up on reading and also on the phone following something up. (The New York Times would call that "reporting.")

Susan e-mailed to note Kat's "The Laura Flanders Show, TV movies of the 70s (& early 80s) and more" (Kat's Corner) saying that she too remembers the TV movies of the seventies:

And for the record, I actually do like Escape From Bogan County [. . .]
If you haven't seen it, it's a TV movie from the seventies. Jaclyn Smith (this may have been the first TV movie she did once becoming one of ) is married to this really disgusting man who won't let her leave him and he has the entire small town and the county in his pocket. Smith's really good in the movie and it's far above most of what you could ever hope to see on Lifetime. I actually thought, the first time I saw it, that we were watching a movie being broadcast on TV and not a TV movie because it had a look to it.
Back in the seventies, that didn't happen very often. And this was a big deal. We had the three networks, PBS and a couple of "independent stations" (which meant reruns). So there weren't all the choices that there are now. But Charlie's Angels was huge and if any of the three, , or , did anything it was huge news.
One of them on Battle of the Network Stars? Oh my God, we must watch! I'm not joking.
So that was actually a pretty good TV movie and one I'd stop and watch again if I passed it while flipping channels. (I believe I only saw it the first time it aired.)
Sadly Greenwald did not produce (or direct) the definative TV movie of the seventies, . Forget pop rocks, earth shoes and the rest. The seventies is best captured by our entertainment culture for those of us who grew up in it. There's Dawn and the sequel Alexander: The Other Side of Night, assorted books, and assorted TV classics. I don't know what was up with Eve Plumb. She dumped Jan Brady and hit her stride with Dawn only to throw away the TV Movie crown -- princess division. Mare was up for it.
is a personal favorite. In that one, teenage Mare's family doesn't understand her so she turns to prostitution. But was also a classic. In this one, teenage Mare's family doesn't understand her, so she divorces them! And joins a carnival! Seriously! She also strums the guitar and I could say something nice about her singing but I'll save it for another time. Sadly the teenage years couldn't last forever in TV land though she was also in something about a haunted amusement park if I remember correctly, or to put it in 70s speak: "According to my calculations." That's how Valerie would say it on . So before you knew it, Mare was a mother with three kids trying to work and get assistance only to sign her children away. (Mare's character couldn't read.) Mare's a great actress but sometimes when I see her in something these days, I think, "Come back to Minnesota Strip, Mare, come back."

wally notes rebecca's "ba-ba-ba ba-ba-boring" (sex and politics and screeds and attitude):

the editorial i put up here yesterday got a some favorable e-mails. but it also got questions. 1 was, why isn't anyone talking about this?
i have no idea. maybe everyone was too wrapped up in barbara walter's idea of the ten most whatever people.
kayne west is the only 1 who's interesting.
have you seen some of the people on the special?
i can't think of anything worse than the special.
there's useless babara walters on aruba.
the world really needed that.
am i missing something?
on this 'fascinating' people, where's cindy sheehan.
oh that's right barbara walters carries water for the republicans. hell she probably carried nancy regan's toilet kit.
i'm amazed that this useless piece of fluff has managed to live down iran-contra. but it helps to have a press that doesn't want to question.

Kyle notes Elaine's "It is not reasonable that those who gamble with men's lives should not stake their own" (Like Maria Said Paz):

What's the deal with Time? It's a weekly, not a daily. But already they've got two "reporters" who've had to testify in this leak case. First there was Matt Cooper, the little boy with beliefs as long as he didn't have to go to prison. Now there's Viveca Novak. Novak's a popular name on the list. But there's plenty of others including Bob Woodward and Judith Miller.
Is anyone else bothered that so many reporters received the leak and didn't cover the fact that the White House was leaking? It's a nice setup that exists today if you're the administration. But when the press whines that they aren't trusted, they better start figuring out what excuse they'll offer to the shouts of "Plamegate!"
Big names (Woodward & Miller) and no names (Cooper & V. Novak), they all make the very exclusive list of "reporters" willing to cover up for the adminstration instead of covering the administration.
The press has bristled at being called lap dogs but the jingle-jangle of the tags on their dog collars make it hard to hear their latest excuses.

Brooke notes Mike's "Al-Jazzera, Iraq contractors, recruiters" (Mikey Likes It!) on Al Jazzera:

This is a big thing even if big media doesn't think so. Bully Boy wants to attack a network and you see how big media acts. Big cowards is more like it.
Where is the freedom of the press in this country? That's what you hear people complain but here's a perfect example of how big media doesn't support the press. If they were for a free press instead of saying silent or offering excuses of how Bully Boy was joking and nonsense like that, they'd be all over this story and trying to get as much information as possible.

??? e-mails asking that we note this announcement:

truthdig.com focuses on in-depth coverage of current affairs
Los Angeles... This morning at the stroke of midnight, truthdig.com, a new Web magazine, launched its inaugural issue promising to provide its readers with provocative content and in-depth coverage of current affairs.
Co-Founder and Editor Robert Scheer, the award winning journalist, commented on the launch: "In this hyper-linked, blog-filled, talk-show-dominated world, it is increasingly difficult to find stories with depth, told by those who know their topic best." "We know that there will always be people who are digging for the truth and if we respect a story and present it in a clear way, it will find an audience."
Truthdig.com is the brainchild of Scheer and co-founder Zuade Kaufman, a former journalist who has long wanted to create a new publication. "A media outlet that is free to dig deep -- to ask the questions that remain unasked -- to raise the issues that remain hidden -- to bring attention to the stories that remain invisible -- that's what we are trying to create."
The site's purpose is to provide a variety of thoughtful, provocative content assembled from a progressive point of view. The site is built around major "digs," led by authorities in their fields, who will "drill" down into contemporary topics and assemble packages of content & text, links, audio, video -- that will grow richer with time and user participation.
The inaugural issue's featured Dig is China: Boom or Boomerang? by Asia expert Orville Schell. Schell comments, "Perhaps no country has so many positive and negative trends as the home of a fifth of the world's people." Amidst the backdrop of a major toxic chemical spill in one of its largest cities, China finds itself facing questions about its stature as a superpower. Schell digs into China and finds the current wisdom -- of China as inevitable superpower and unstoppable economic force -- is not the whole truth.
To offer frequent change to its readers, truthdig.com also presents a diversity of original reporting and aggregated content culled by the site's editors and staff. This material is divided into categories. The inaugural issue offers the following compelling selections:
Uncovered -- Dossiers of ongoing news subjects -- including GOP supporter Jack Abramoff, the Alito Nomination and the Frist File.
Ear to the Ground -- Robert Scheer's weekly column and his take on other issues in the news.
Reports -- Original articles and opinion pieces unique to truthdig.com. This week's features include Iraq expert Juan Cole's article Hussein's Facing Charges, But Will Rumsfield Be on Trial? a behind the story look at Saddam Hussein's trial and Chicago Agonistes: The Plight of the Los Angeles Times, by former Times Editor Steve Wasserman.
A/V Booth -- Audio interviews, video clips, photo essays and more. Features include Inside Chavez's Venezuela by Sharmini Peries, journalist turned foreign policy advisor to Venezuela President Hugo Chavez and It's War, Not Hollywood by former Florida Guardsman and author John Crawford.
Editor Bob Scheer, when asked what motivated the creation of the site, refers to legendary media critic A.J. Liebling's quote, "Freedom of the press is guaranteed only to those who own one."

And lastly, I want to note something, Wally's "Florida edition" (The Daily Jot):

The Daily Jot isn't a morning blog. I like to get it out of the way but there are times when it's not possible. Like this morning. The agreement to get my grandfather to come to my mom's was that when he was ready to go back home, no one would try to talk him out of it and I'd just drive him back.
I'm still rubbing my eyes when he says this morning he's ready to go back.So I took him and guess what, some homes still don't have electricity. Let me repeat that: Some homes still don't have electricty. Maybe you forgot, national media hasn't been interested, but Florida Power & Light swore that by November 22nd power would be back on. They missed that deadline.
So this is the Florida edition of The Daily Jot where I'm going to tell you what the national media hasn't because they don't care.
People who lost their housing are still waiting. They may be in a shelter temporarily. That's the lucky ones.
Car sales and home sales are down for the month. Some say the market in southern Florida has "cooled" due to the hurricane.
Here's a story on something you probably didn't see in the "nation's paper" (New York Times), Joel Hood "S. Florida's funeral homes coped creatively with Wilma's power outages:"
In the frantic first days after Hurricane Wilma, funeral homes in Broward and Palm Beach counties were forced to come up with creative ways to deal with power outages.
Without electricity to power crematoriums, some funeral homes stacked bodies in dressing rooms. Some shipped bodies to refrigerated holding rooms at county medical examiner's offices. Others embalmed bodies whether families wanted it or not.
Industry officials estimate funeral homes lost millions in the aftermath of Wilma on Oct. 24. Also, some now say restoring power to funeral homes should receive the same priority given to hospitals, supermarkets, and fire and police departments after a natural disaster.
"If we're unable to properly store bodies in a refrigerated facility or do embalming, there immediately starts to be a health issue," said Daniel Perrin, vice president of the Florida Funeral Directors Association, which represents 700 funeral homes.
That's from yesterday's Sun-Sentinel.
Remember when I told you that it was the rains that came through after the hurricane that hurt? Here's a story about today, "20 to 50 residents displaced after building roof collapse in Oakland Park:"
Heavy rains on Tuesday afternoon left about 20 to 50 building occupants out on the street after a roof collapse in Oakland Park.
The building located at 4061 N. Dixie Highway was determined to be unsafe by a building official and was red tagged. The building had suffered previous roof damage from Hurricane Wilma.
The displaced residents are making arrangements to relocate on their own.
Diane C. Lade's "Gas costs hurting volunteers who help disabled, elderly:"
An AARP survey of 568 people age 50 and older, released in October, found 62 percent limited their daily driving because of gas prices after Hurricane Katrina drove up fuel costs. And 41 percent said they cut spending in other areas to pay for gas.
For a stylish measure of Hurricane Wilma's economic impact, don your best apparel and head out this evening to the White Party.
Half of the restaurants signed up to cater the gala at Miami's Vizcaya Museum have pulled out of the event, saying they lost too much money in the Oct. 24 storm to justify donations to the AIDS fundraiser, organizers said.''After the storm many called and said, 'We've been out of power for 10 days, we lost all our food, we were in trouble anyway. And we won't be able to help you,''' said Rick Siclari, executive director of Care Resource, the AIDS charity that puts on White Party.
Here's the Associated Press's "Wilma highlights plight of Florida's migrant farmworkers:"
Ernesto and Carmen Vasquez intend to celebrate the holidays at home despite the SUV-sized hole in their living-room ceiling -- a calling card left by Hurricane Wilma -- and the red "X" on their door marking the trailer as condemned.
It's been one month since Wilma whipped through their Everglades mobile home park in western Palm Beach County, flattening many of their neighbors' homes, but the couple have yet to receive a visit from aid workers or local officials. Shelters here are scarce, so they plan to remain in their two-bedroom trailer with their two children -- if the rest of the roof doesn't cave in.
"We still have a house, so I suppose we are among the lucky ones," Carmen Vasquez said, as she looked up at the ceiling boards, sagging above photos of her children.
The Vasquez family is among thousands of Florida's uninsured farmworkers, some still without electricity, who are awaiting help in the wake of the Oct. 24 storm that thrashed South Florida at the end of the nation's worst hurricane season on record. Farmworker advocates say the situation is bad, but worse is the fact that it is looking like a repeat of last year, with migrant workers' flimsy housing rebuilt just in time for the next season's storms.
Maybe you needed aid? How's that going? This is from "Food Stamps Yet To Arrive For 50,000 Wilma Victims:"
Almost 3 million people filed for emergency food stamps in one of Florida's biggest disasters -- Hurricane Wilma.
On Tuesday, one Boynton Beach woman said it's taken so long to get the food stamps, she's had to take out a cash advance and skip Thanksgiving.
Ketty Jules is just one of about 50,000 people who are still waiting for that emergency help.
Jules is a working single mom who, like many, lives from paycheck to paycheck.When hurricane Wilma roared thru last month, Ketty lost her electricity and a week's paycheck.
"Because of everything defrosting, I threw away everything in the fridge and went to John Prince Park and waited for almost four hours," she said. "They told me food stamp cards would get here in 7 to 10 days, and nothing ever did."
Well at least the rent stayed the same. Who wants to move to the area now? But believe it or not, rent's have risen. This is from Robin Benedick's "South Florida landlords blame rising taxes, insurance costs for rent surge:"
Landlords in South Florida say skyrocketing taxes and insurance costs are forcing them to sell their units or raise rents -- in some cases by several hundred dollars a month.
Rental property doesn't qualify for Florida's Save Our Homes property tax break, which limits annual property tax increases on homes to 3 percent.
I could go on and on. There are millions of stories. Too bad the national media doesn't seem to give a damn.
So that's it for the Florida Edition of The Daily Jot today.

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