Rant. Muse. Eat. Sleep. Recycle.
Wednesday, May 24, 2006
Hey! I need help for ideas for group political statements that are done artistically -- poli-mobs! I am a HUGE fan of the two guys who made it through Dick Cheney's press conference a couple of weeks back. One, who I admire no end, asked him if he wasn't ashamed at what he'd done to this nation (surrounded by a bunch of rabid, conservative, booing Republicans, no less), while the other stood with his back to Cheney as a protest. That's the kind of thing that I'm looking for. If I can get some good ideas, I want to implement them. I can send out broadcast emails beyond this, but this is Idea Central as far as I'm concerned. No idea is too weird or silly for consideration. My first couple of thoughts are pretty pedestrian: going to a Norm Coleman talk and turning our backs in unison; wearing photocopied Bush masks and burning photocopies of the U.S., going to a Norm Coleman talk with photoshopped pictures of his head on a dog's body and Bush holding the leash (OK, do you get it? I don't like Norm.)
Help me leave the cul-de-sac of Norm Coleman and come up with some other ideas.
The Hillary Effect
This post is for Renegade who I am grateful to for steering my blog through the ...ummm.. blog-infested waters of the internet. If you've read many of Ren's posts, you know this photo is hilarious. And, if you've read his posts and still think this isn't hilarious -- you are evil! ;-)
Thursday, May 18, 2006
Just hook me up to that idling bus...
"Carbon dioxide... we call it life," TV ads say
By Deborah Zabarenko
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - A little girl blows away dandelion fluff as an announcer says, "Carbon dioxide: they call it pollution; we call it life," in an advertisement targeting global warming "alarmists," especially Al Gore.
The television ads, screened for the press on Wednesday and set to air in 14 U.S. cities starting on Thursday, are part of a campaign by the Competitive Enterprise Institute to counter a media spotlight on threats posed by worldwide climate change.
The spots are timed to precede next week's theatrical release of "An Inconvenient Truth," a documentary film on global warming that features Gore, the former vice president and Democratic presidential candidate.
Against backdrops of a park, a beach and a forest, one celebrates the benefits of greenhouse gas-producing fuels.
"The fuels that produce CO2 (carbon dioxide) have freed us from a world of back-breaking labor, lighting up our lives, allowing us to create and move the things we need, the people we love," the ad runs. "Now some politicians want to label carbon dioxide a pollutant. Imagine if they succeed -- what would our lives be like then?"
The other ad questions media reports of the threat of climate change, especially a Time magazine issue devoted to the topic, and shows film of a glacier melting and then runs in reverse to show the glacier reconstituting itself.
"We had started work on this several months back, but we sort of changed course once the flood of glacier-melting stories began," said Sam Kazman, an institute lawyer who worked on the ads. "So we did want to get out there before the Al Gore film got into national opening."
Fred Smith, president of the institute, a nonprofit that advocates free enterprise and limited government regulation, said he had seen the film and found it "very alarmist," although well-produced.
"There's a lot of pictures of Al Gore pensively looking into the sunset," Smith said. "I don't think he's running for president, but he might be running for arch-druid."
The institute and environmental groups such as Washington-based Environmental Defense agree that average global temperatures have risen about 1 degree Fahrenheit (0.6 degrees Celsius) in the last century.
But the institute questions the impact of global warming while a broad range of scientists and environmentalists, including Gore, have linked it to more severe storms, melting ice caps and rising sea levels.
"They fly in the face of most of the science," Charlie Miller of Environmental Defense said of the institute ads. "The good news is that there's not a trade-off here between prosperity, jobs, growth and protecting the Earth. We can do both."
Environmental Defense and the Ad Council released public service announcements in March featuring children as future victims of global warming, and these were mentioned critically at the briefing where the new ads were released.
The institute ads will run from May 18 through May 28 in Albany, New York; Albuquerque, New Mexico; Anchorage, Alaska; Austin, Texas; Charleston, West Virginia; Dallas; Dayton, Ohio; Denver; Harrisburg, Pennsylvania; Phoenix; Sacramento and Santa Barbara, California; Springfield, Illinois, and Washington.
Posted by KAY/OLIVE
Monday, May 15, 2006
I am outraged...
How long will this go on? The blogosphere is in a lather and so am I about Bush's latest lie. Just weeks ago he was assuring the nation that the only warrantless electronic surveillance going on was on suspected terrorists -- and THEN only if part of the conversation was overseas. Now, we find out that the NSA has been taking virtually ALL of our calls and putting them into a database for "calling patterns." This is KGB Russia; this is Nazi Germany-type stuff.
How does this evil idiot grin and make some people swallow this swill? I laughed when Renegade sent me a Photoshopped jpg of Bush getting a blowjob with the caption, "Now we can impeach him." But, I should have been crying. We are so far out of whack as a nation that a blowjob brings impeachment proceedings, while breaking the 4th Amendment (no unreasonable search or seizure), usurping Congress' powers to declare war (NOT the president's), sanctioned torture and illegal detainment and a baseless war that has killed an average of two Americans a day for three years doesn't raise an eyebrow.
Conservatives actually scare me right now. I admit to nothing conservative anymore, not even my taste in socks. Conservative is a bad word in my lexicon. I have to distance myself from people who support this idiot simply because he wipes his ass in the White House. I've seen squatters in old mansions, should I call them "squire" by virtue of their living space?
What scares me most about conservatives is how they support a man who has DEMONSTRATED NOTHING of their values. Living within one's means? Look at the national debt. Taking care of the homefront first? Peek in one of those 2,500 body bags from Iraq. Smaller government? Check out the latest GOP spending bill. Honesty? Whew, what to choose - WMD's, No Domestic Spying, In and Out of Iraq in a year... take your pick. Christian Values? Which torture center would you care to peruse? Indvidual rights to privacy? Three letters, NSA.
Conservatives, let me explain it in terms you can grasp.... your loathed Clinton? Pretend that he is your Commander In Chief because you have basically gotten as far away from your alleged core values as you can.
Honestly, Clinton pissed me off with his GOP welfare stuff and his racist continuation of the War on Drugs (begun by original racist Ronnie Reagan), but he threw some bones to the nation at large. Yes, the Predator software that was capable of tracking conversations was continued under his watch and I hated that, but that pales in comparison to this. Bushies will use this information for political gain. I promise you.
And, I will forever blame conservatives for giving away the country.
Tuesday, May 09, 2006
This is the difference:
This past weekend, Democrats announced their plan for what they will do when they win back the House in November. Here’s the to-do list for their first week in office:
--Raise the minimum wage (for the first time since 1997)
--Allow the government to negotiate better prices with drug companies
--Vote to fully implement recommendations of the 9/11 Commission
--Reinstate Congressional rules to try to bring the budget back into balance. In other words, if Congress wants to increase spending or cut taxes, they’ll have to show how they’re going to pay for these things (and, no, raising the debt ceiling is not a way around ‘showing your work’).
In response, Tom DeLay said on This Week With George Stephanopoulos that Republican priorities – the things they’re running on to try to maintain control of the House – are as follows:
--An amendment banning gay marriage
--Putting a stop to stem cell research
--“Judicial activism” (translation: making sure there are more right wing judges)
--An anti flag-burning amendment
Folks, this is all you need to know when you go to the polls in November.
Posted by KAY
Wednesday, May 03, 2006
(AP) ALEXANDRIA, VA - A federal jury rejected the death penalty for al-Qaida conspirator Zacarias Moussaoui on Wednesday and decided he must spend life in prison for his role in the deadliest terrorist attack in U.S. history.
After seven days of deliberation, the nine men and three women rebuffed the government's appeal for death for the only person charged in this country in the four suicide jetliner hijackings that killed nearly 3,000 people on Sept. 11, 2001.
Three jurors said Moussaoui had only limited knowledge of the Sept. 11 plot and three described his role in the attacks as minor, if he had any role at all.
Moussaoui, as he was led from the courtroom after the 15-minute hearing, said: "America, you lost. ... I won." He clapped his hands as he was escorted away.
Some victims' families said he got what he deserved. "I do know the jury made the right decision," said Abraham Scott, who lost his wife Janice Marie Scott in the attack on the Pentagon. "Justice has been served today."
Rosemary Dillard, whose husband Eddie died in the attacks, said of Moussaoui: "He's a bad man, but we have a fair society." She said of terrorists: "We will treat them with respect no matter what they do to us."
From the White House, President Bush said the verdict "represents the end of this case but not an end to the fight against terror."
The verdict came after four years of legal maneuvering and a six-week trial that put jurors on an emotional roller coaster and gave the 37-year-old Frenchman of Moroccan descent a platform to taunt Americans. The judge was to hand down the life sentence Thursday morning, bound by the jury's verdict.
The jury did not reach the unanimity required for a death sentence against the man who claimed a direct role in the Sept. 11 attacks even though he was in jail at the time on immigration charges.
During the trial, no one contested the contention that Moussaoui came to the United States intending to do harm and that he received flight training toward that goal. But his lawyers contended he was an al-Qaida outcast who was not trusted with the knowledge of the Sept. 11 plot.
The jurors agreed unanimously Moussaoui "knowingly created a grave risk of death" for more than the intended victims of Sept. 11 and committed his acts with "substantial planning" — accepting two of the aggravating factors necessary for a death sentence.
But they did not give sufficient weight to those findings to reach a death sentence, balancing them against mitigating factors offered by the defense. Jurors did not, however, accept defense arguments that Moussaoui was mentally ill.
When the verdict was announced, Moussaoui showed no visible reaction and sat slouched in his chair, refusing to stand with his defense team. He had declined to cooperate with his court-appointed lawyers throughout the trial.
When the jurors came into the room, a couple of them looked directly at Moussaoui but most did not, looking at the judge instead. They all wore sober expressions. One dark-haired young man shook his head no before the verdict was read.
When the judge asked the jurors if their verdict was the same on all three counts, the forewoman, a high school math teacher, was joined by several other jurors in answering, "Yes."
The verdict was received with silence in the packed courtroom, where one row was lined with victims' families.
The jurors were divided on the 23 mitigating factors in the case, from whether the defendant's role in the Sept. 11 attacks was only minor — three said his role "if any" was minor — and whether the Moroccan was subject to racism as a child — three said he was.
The closest the jurors came to unanimity in finding mitigating factors was on two questions. Nine found that Moussaoui's father had a violent temper and physically and emotionally abused his family. Nine also found that his unstable early childhood and dysfunctional family resulted in his leaving home.
In their successful defense of Moussaoui, his lawyers revealed new levels of pre-attack bungling of intelligence by the FBI and other government agencies. By the trial's end, the defense team was portraying its uncooperative client as a delusional schizophrenic. They argued he took the witness stand to confess a role in Sept. 11 that he never had — all to achieve martyrdom through execution or for recognition in history.
They overcame the impact of two dramatic appearances by Moussaoui himself — first to renounce his four years of denying any involvement in the attacks and then to gloat over the pain of those who lost loved ones.
Using evidence gathered in the largest investigation in U.S. history, prosecutors achieved a preliminary victory last month when the jury ruled Moussaoui's lies to federal agents a month before the attacks made him eligible for the death penalty because they kept agents from discovering some of the hijackers.
But even with heart-rending testimony from nearly four dozen victims and their relatives — testimony that forced some jurors to wipe their eyes — the jury was not convinced that Moussaoui, who was in jail on Sept. 11, deserved to die.
The case broke new ground in the understanding of Sept. 11 — releasing to the public the first transcript and playing in court the cockpit tape of United 93's last half hour. The tape captured the sounds of terrorists hijacking the aircraft over Pennsylvania and passengers trying to retake the jet until it crashed in a field.