Monday, May 15, 2006

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Backing away from her assertion that the current generation is lazy, Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton said on Sunday that she simply wanted to "set the bar high" when she told an audience last week that young people today "think work is a four-letter word."
Mrs. Clinton said her daughter, Chelsea, called to complain after learning about her remarks at a gathering of the United States Chamber of Commerce in Washington on Thursday. In that speech, Mrs. Clinton criticized young people for having a sense of entitlement after growing up in a "culture that has a premium on instant gratification."
"My daughter heard that I'd said that, and she called and she said, 'Mom, I do work hard and my friends work hard,' " Mrs. Clinton said on Sunday in a commencement address at the C. W. Post campus of Long Island University.
"And I said, 'I'm sorry, I didn't mean to convey the impression that you don't work hard,' " Mrs. Clinton continued. "I just want to set the bar high, because we are in a competition for the future."

The above is from Anne E. Kornblut and Raymond Hernandez' "Chided by Daughter, Clinton Says Youth Are Not Lazy" in this morning's New York Times. Clinton plays word games like Bill Clinton did at his worst, doesn't she? If you're sorry, if you're really sorry, that's followed with "I was wrong to say that." Not with some lame "I just want to set the bar high, because we are in a competition for the future."

The senantor who can't stop running for president, even though we're talking two years from now, apparently can't help seeing everything as a competition. Why didn't she just say "I can out man any man" because those do appear to be the standards she's operating from, the template she's accepted?

Maybe when she looks at today's youth, she remembers her past as a 'Goldwater Girl,' her current entanglement with Rupert Murdoch and all the triangulating in between? By those standards, everyone else probably does look lazy to her.

In other sick news, from the article, the New York chapter of NARAL will be endorsing her because, apparently, it's not enough for NARAL to have made themselves useless, they also need to demonstrate just how far they'll go to destroy abortion rights. NARAL and Hillary Clinton deserve one another. Also, Kornblut and Hernandez note that Newt's called her "very formidable" as a candidate -- while to those living on planet earth she just comes off like Joe Lieberman who, if you'll remember, was being touted as a serious front runner in 2002.

For more on those who would "slam free choice behind us" (Joni Mitchell's "Dog Eat Dog), Mia notes Leah Fishbein and R.J. Schinner's "In Pennsylvania, It's Santorum versus Santorum-Lite" (CounterPunch):

While the right to abortion hangs in the balance, the Democratic Party leadership has decided on a strategy of "finding common ground." This strategy could also be called outright capitulation to the theocratic onslaught on the rights and lives of women. As we decide how to respond to this choice by the Democrats, let us think long and hard about what kind of future we want for this country, and for the world. As we wonder over compromises on issues of war, torture, police state measures, theocracy and every other outrage the Bush regime is cementing into place, let us not resign ourselves to quietly accepting what we would have found intolerable a few years ago. Let us learn, stand strong, and confront this fight head on. If we give up ground, they will only continue to take more.
Santorum and Theocracy
A recent New York Times article[1] sheds some light on the Democrats' "common ground" strategy on abortion, which is concentrated in the Pennsylvania Senate race. Rick Santorum, the Republican incumbent, is quite possibly one of the most reactionary elected officials in the country. He has sought to ban abortion and wrote the bill that sought to include teaching intelligent design in the "No Child Left Behind" Act.[2] He supports a constitutional amendment to ban gay marriage, and has been called doctrinaire and sanctimonious.[3]
Santorum often makes comments in the vein of a speech he gave to the Heritage Foundation in D.C. called "The Necessity of Truth," In this speech, he calls out to the country, asking how so many Americans can have such great faith in God and still feel so constrained from expressing their views in the public sphere, in terms of legislation and policy.[4] (By the way, the answer, Senator Santorum, is the establishment clause). In a quote from a recent article, the list against Santorum is long and heavy-they note that he has "likened Democrats to Nazis, claims Terri Schiavo was 'executed,' said the mainstream media lies about him, equated homosexuality with bestiality, and claimed the Catholic priest pedophile scandal in Boston was really no surprise since Boston is 'a seat of academic, political and cultural liberalism'."[5]
Overall, he has attempted to lead the Senate in imposing a theocracy on US society. While Santorum's agenda may find support from the White House and far-right Christian fundamentalist movements, it is in stark contrast to what most people consider an acceptable way of governing society.
Santorum-lite Not Our Savior
Because of his radically fundamentalist views, and fascistic attempts to take control of the bodies and minds of people living in the US, taking on Santorum should be a piece of cake. The 2006 race is a seemingly perfect opportunity to drag his reactionary program into the light of day. He stands for everything most people are against. However, the Democratic Party leadership has opted for a different strategy: run Santorum-lite. Enter Bob Casey, Jr.
Casey is adamantly against abortion. He strongly supported Alito and Roberts' nominations to the Supreme Court, and has been an avid cheerleader of Bush's war on Iraq. He also agrees with Santorum on stem-cell research, which he is against. [6] While Casey isn't quite as reactionary as the GOP's ultra-conservative poster-boy (unlike Santorum, he ­ at least at this point ­ is not openly opposed to contraception), the notion that this is what choice means in November is not only disgusting, but clearly leads to a quiet acceptance of abortion being banned outright.
Casey has made such statements as, "I am and I have always been pro-life," as well as "I support the current federal policy on embryonic stem cell research and would oppose the Castle bill to expand federal support of embryonic stem cell research." While running for State Treasurer of Pennsylvania in 2004, he stated that if Roe V. Wade were overturned, he would only desire to provide exceptions for the life of the mother, and not for cases of rape or incest. [7] So we have in our hands a candidate against, among other things, science and choice.

On the issue of the NSA, Kyle notes Greg Palast's "THE SPIES WHO SHAG USThe Times and USA Today have Missed the Bigger Story -- Again" (BuzzFlash via

The leader in the field of what is called "data mining," is a company called, "ChoicePoint, Inc," which has sucked up over a billion dollars in national security contracts.
Worried about Dick Cheney listening in Sunday on your call to Mom? That ain't nothing. You should be more concerned that they are linking this info to your medical records, your bill purchases and your entire personal profile including, not incidentally, your voting registration. Five years ago, I discovered that ChoicePoint had already gathered 16 billion data files on Americans -- and I know they've expanded their ops at an explosive rate.
They are paid to keep an eye on you -- because the FBI can't. For the government to collect this stuff is against the law unless you're suspected of a crime. (The law in question is the Constitution.) But ChoicePoint can collect it for "commercial" purchases -- and under the Bush Administration's suspect reading of the Patriot Act -- our domestic spying apparatchiks can then BUY the info from ChoicePoint.
Who ARE these guys selling George Bush a piece of you?
ChoicePoint's board has more Republicans than a Palm Beach country club. It was funded, and its board stocked, by such Republican sugar daddies as billionaires Bernie Marcus and Ken Langone -- even after Langone was charged by the Securities Exchange Commission with abuse of inside information.

And Stan found a good highlight, Stephan Smith's "Hey, Neil Young: We Young Singers are Hog-Tied, Too" (San Franciso Chronicle via Common Dreams):

You recently said that you felt compelled to write your new album "Living With War" because you got tired of waiting for young protest singers to pick up the torch. I'm compelled to tell you that young protest singers are here, and we're holding the flame. I'm one of them.
The trouble is, you can't hear us on major radio stations for the same reasons you noted last year when you poignantly stated, "I can't do anything in the record industry, or especially radio, because it's so controlled by corporations."
While established artists like yourself may have felt your hands tied, the truth is far worse for upcoming artists: Even booking agents and managers won't touch us for fear that we will offend their audiences in a country where consumerism and patriotism stand united, as your song "Restless Consumer" makes clear.
Bono was right when, at U2's induction to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame last year, he said, "There is very little chance for there to be another U2 the way the business is constructed right now." Describing corporate dependency on the toothless hit single, he said, "You have to have the hit single immediately. Bruce Springsteen didn't have a single for 10 years. Neil Young, I'm not sure, he ever had a single."
If radio won't play an artist whose singles touch on politics, the only hope is to get a break opening for established acts. But, I don't know of a single mainstream artist whose agent will allow an unestablished political artist to open for them. Would you?

Stan offers that Stephan Smith was among the voices speaking out for some time and Stan's correct. You can find out more on Smith by visiting his website and Stan also recommends this article. In addition, Smith was profiled by The Progressive awhile back. The article wasn't available online but I'll try to find a pull quote from it this evening (time permitting, otherwise we'll note an excerpt from it tomorrow morning).

Smith's "The Bell" has been used as bumper music on Democracy Now! which is one way to transition and remind everyone to listen, watch or read Democracy Now! today.

The e-mail address for this site is

[Jess note: "The Bell" corrected from "The Bells" and link added.]