Not only is Digby a great writer, she can speak the speak…
There is just nothing left to say after that. Lock. Stock. Barrel. Read More
Steve Gilliard has gone to the next, but he leaves behind a great mountain of affection and respect.
There are a handful of bloggers that first inspired me to look at this blogging thing a bit closer back in 2001. Steve Gilliard was at Daily Kos in those days, and he, along with Hesiod, Atrios, Digby, Tbogg, Billmon and Instapundit inspired me to begin blogging myself. That’s pretty good company. But, Steve had a certain something, a focus and way of going directly to the point that was all his own. I attempt to emulate that honest approach every time I write a post. Thanks Steve.
Read Jane Hamsher’s post on Steve.Read More
In referring to Nancy Pelosi’s diplomatic trip to Syria the seminal right wing rag The NY Post headlined it: “W Kicks Nancy’s Assad”, which I thought was more than a bit ironic considering how so many on the right got all Itchy and Scratchy about Pelosi wearing the “Islamic symbol of the subjugation of women”, the evil hajib. It was pile on Pelosi time, and every wanker with a misogynistic appetite went for the white meat, irony or no.
Poor wingnuts. And, the “hate your enemies from a safe distance whilst simultaneiously ignoring those same enemies in order to not give them cridibility” approach has worked so well too. I suppose when you have no credibility, the only tactic is to deny the credibility of others. Well, at least that’s the story you tell when you are hanging out with your ne0-nut boys down on the corner. The important thing is, that your homies don’t know what you are doing when you’re not with them.Read More
The system failed you and it failed our troops, and we’re going to fix it.
The mayor of blogtopia (YSCTP) lays down some prose that pretty much explains why I keep on blogging.
If you blog, read blogs, and seek to see change come about in a crazy mixed up world… go read.Read More
The headline is a bit hyperbolic, but it means to serve a point. It seems that the reaction over at Little Green Footballs to the report that Khalid Sheikh Mohammed had plans on the board to assassinate former President Jimmy Carter has been, to put it bluntly, less than patriotic. (According to Greenwald, Charles Johnson at LGF has disabled direct links to the post at LGF. ) It seems that the comments at LGF are rife with support for the assassination of Carter. Not a great surprise to this longtime observer of the nest of fascists at LGF. This type of confused reaction permeates the right. Notes Glenn Greenwald:
Michelle Malkin’s Hot Air expressed this confusion:
“[Mohammed] confessed to 29 plots in all, including the Richard Reid shoebomb plot and planned assassinations of the pope and . . . Jimmy Carter?”
These extremists come to believe their twisted rhetoric that Democrats are on the side of Al Qaeda and so they literally can’t understand why Mohammed would want to assassinate his own allies like President Carter.
The irony is twofold: It’s not only as Glenn states that right wing extremists can’t believe that a terrorist would want to assassinate a “Liberal ally”, it is also that they are literally supporting the terrorist agenda (the assassintion of a former US President) of one “sworn enemy” (the terrorists) to “fight” their other perceived “sworn enemy”: everyone who disagrees with them. Of course, this contradiction is entirely lost on them, being so completely immersed in an ass backward ideology rooted in hatred.
Continues Glenn Greenwald in his post entitled “Support for al–Qaida plots on large right-wing blog”:
Here, one of the largest right-wing blog communities which pretends to be opposed to Al Qaeda is expressing support for Al Qaeda murder plots against former U.S. Presidents. The significance is overwhelming and self-evident, and many American journalists have shown how commendably eager they are to transcend partisan differences and rise up in righteous condemnation against this sort of “sick” bile.
And, several important factors distinguish this story from the HuffPost story, making it more meaningful. Unlike Huffington Post, which deleted the comments in question, Johnson has left them on his blog. Even more significantly, Johnson actively and regularly deletes comments he does not like, which lends some credibility to the notion that he approves of these comments, or at least does not find them sufficiently offensive to delete them, the way he does with scores of other comments.
It is worth restating that if the shoe were on the other foot and the comments on a Liberal website were calling for the assassination of a former US President – George H.W. Bush for example- you can be damn sure that the lizturds at LGF would be wetting their pants over it, Little Grubby Fingers trembling as they typed each word, calling for Liberals to be swinging from the trees for expressing such “traitorous” views. The headline would read something like: “Liberal website supports assassination of US President”, or something akin to it. We’ve seen this before. Last week, Bill Maher said:
“But I have zero doubt that if Dick Cheney was not in power, people wouldn’t be dying needlessly tomorrow.”
Maher’s statement above was misrepresented all over the right wing blogsphere variously as:
On Saturday, the website NewsBusters.org posted a story under the headline “Bill Maher Sorry the Assassination Attempt on Dick Cheney Failed.”
There’s just one problem: As a fair reading of the show’s transcript makes clear, I never said those words. Still, over the weekend, dozens of websites, mostly right wing, picked up the story (with headline intact) thus proliferating the myth that comic Maher somehow advocates the whacking of our Veep.
Don’t get me wrong: I’ve never joined the Dick Cheney Fan Club. But what I said Friday — and what I believe — is that the Vice President has presided over a bungled execution of a war in which thousands of our bravest continue to die. And I believe that were he not in power, our troops would likely come home sooner. But I don’t wish him dead. Ironically, I made my comments during a discussion about Free Speech, which is one of the chief reasons that I love my country.
It’s patently clear according to the transcript, (March 3, 2007) that Maher was being entirely hypothetical and not calling for the death of the VP. Regrading Cheney’s importance to the war, you can agree or disagree, but it is pretty clear this is Dick Cheney’s War. It is entirely possible that if he were not the VP – resignation, health reasons, he chose someone besides himself to be VP in 2000- that the war may not have happened the way it did. I don’t agree with that point of view, but it is a hypothetical.
The tactic employed by the right wing sites that misrepresented Maher’s statment is a form of “controlled controversy”, a well established GOP propaganda trick intended to create controversy where none exists in order to maintain disarray. That is: Keep your enemy focusing on defense so the offense suffers.
It flows both ways. What are the wing nuts up in arms about? Rosie O’Donnell’s latest rhetorical bait.
Hate is the bait. It has become abundantly clear that the right wing hate machine has done its job well. Any perspective that opposes them is the enemy, and any perspective that supports them – even a perspective from the terrorists they propose to be so against- is to be embraced.
This is important to note. For the ideological battle ground is shifting and drifting on the right. It’s no longer about good versus evil. It’s about “us versus them”. The problem is the “them” that so many of the right wing and especially the 101 fighting keyboardists choose to engage in a fight is anyone who disagrees with them. It has become entirely about hate and ideology rather than about what is best for the nation and the planet as a whole and what should be done to insure a stable Iraq and bring US soldiers home.
This development is the result of two forces coming together: the ongoing GOP tactical warfare on all opposing ideology has collided with the complete and utter failure of incompetent, ill planned, and implemented policies that were and continue to be based upon an ideology of racism over racial tolerance, competition over cooperation, merit over equality, power politics and militarism over pacifism, dictatorship over democracy, exclusiveness over inclusiveness, common sense over theory or science, pragmatism over principle. (At the risk of provoking Godwin’s law, this litany is adapted from here.)
All they have is their hatred, and they will use it to avoid dealing with the ramifications of their failure and the impending loss of their power.
In December of 2005, the progressive blogsphere was abuzz with a prescient post by James Wolcott on this matter of right wingers dreaming about killing those they hate:
This one sentence amid all that writhing distemper leapt out at me:
“May he [i.e., me] be kidnapped by ‘insurgents’ in Iraq then appear on an ugly net broadcast. I wonder, if in the moment before the knife started sawing into his fleashy neck if he might rethink his opinions on the GWOT.”
He later corrected the spelling to “fleshy,” lest anyone think I possess a flashy neck.
This sentence leapt out not only because it was directed at yours truly but because it fits a pattern of measel spots I’ve discerned.
More and more the right wing militant “anti-idiotarians” (as they deludedly think of themselves) have been relishing the prospect of antiwar figures undergoing the Daniel Pearl treatment. They keep bringing it up as the retribution that’ll deliver certain choice heads on a platter. In a sick irony, Daniel Pearl’s marytrdom has provided a negative inspiration to certain super patriots professing to fight for truth, justice, and the American way.
I wrote at the time:
Such dreaming of violence is a form of blood lust, of course. Something which is seen on both sides of the political spectrum, evident in games, film, television, literature and real events. As Sideshow notes:
Everyone is linking Wolcott’s Headhunters for a reason: He makes a really good point about the lust for violence that erupts from the right-wingers when they talk about liberals.
Yup. Personally, I don’t think wingers are traitors, nor do I fantasize about their heads being lobbed off by a tree hugging terrorist. The worst I think of wingers is that they are wimps and hypocrits.
As I’ve said many times before, I”ll fight to the death to protect a wingnuts right to be wrong.
It still holds true. Yet, I can’t help but notice the blind ideological idiocy as well as the moral and ethical shame of supporting a plan to kill US President Jimmy Carter that was thought up by the terrorist who may have killed Daniel Pearl.
The First Freedom Project includes a number of facets to ensure that this precious right, guaranteed by our laws and Constitution, is recognized and protected:
– A commitment to continued expansion of enforcement of civil rights statutes protecting religious liberty.
– Creation of a Department-wide Task Force on Religious Liberty, chaired by the Assistant Attorney General of the Civil Rights Division, to review DOJ policies impacting religious liberty, coordinate religious liberty cases, and improve outreach to stakeholder communities.
– Initiation of a series of regional seminars to be held around the country to educate religious, civil rights, and community leaders, attorneys, government officials, and other interested citizens about the laws protecting religious freedom enforced by the Department of Justice and how to file complaints.
– Increased outreach to religious organizations, civil rights organizations, and other groups and individuals concerned with religious liberty issues through meetings, speaking engagements, and distribution of informational literature
So much for the separation of church and state. Maha asks: “Is there some outbreak of religious oppression I haven’t heard about?”. It must be the next wave of Liberal terrorists launching Phase Q Plan 20214-B of the War on Christmas. (Shhhh. It’s a secret.)
Perhaps you should consider adding a new twist to liven it up a bit. After you’ve tazered and beaten your immigrant, you should drag him down to the local military recruiting office and force him to sign up to defend your way of life. That’d add an element of realism we haven’t seen in previous immigrant hunts.
Hey, it worked for the Union in the Civil War.
What’s at stake here is the egalitarian and democratic nature of the blogosphere. If traffic and linkage are concentrated among a relatively few extremely popular blogs, then the vast majority are effectively shut out of the conversation. It is a basic liberal belief that great success carries with it the duty to extend opportunity to others; that’s the duty that, as some see it, Atrios and others fail to live up to. As Jon Swift observes, the right blogosphere is actually much more liberal about linking to smaller blogs than the liberal side.
This is a problem I’ve experienced at Jakeneck and the SNAFU Principle. A few top tier bloggers have linked to individual posts here (Avedon Carol of The Sideshow being the most generous and consistent for which I am thankful) and I’ve gotten some nice nods from Jon Swift, My Left Wing, Skippy the Bush Kangaroo, and Jewschool, mostly for my longer more “intellectual” posts. (If I’ve left anyone out, sorryboutdat.)
What I’ve observed is that the lack of liberal linkage creates our own echo chamber that concentrates only upon the dominant bloggers. While it is a great resource, it can be pretty repetitive and redundant. And, some great information and great humor, comes from the rest of the blogsphere. Yes, it’s about being more democratic, but it’s really about the flow of information and its ability to convey the truth. We live in an era of disinformation. And, our ability to fight that disinformation is severely hindered by excluding large numbers of smart people who can assist in the task of truth seeking and news gathering.
As brother Douglas has pointed out, the mediaspace is threatened by the lack of human intervention, meaning that the role of humans becomes less important as the technology and the mediaspace itself becomes the point. Blogging is a function that offsets the corporatation of the mediaspace. But, it doesn’t do the job nearly as well as it could and should if only a small fraction of voices dominate the discussion.
While it’s not overt censorship, it’s a form of it. A result of the natural order of human social groups. It reminds me of high school in many ways. Cliques grouping together and excluding others not because they don’t share anything in common, but simply because they can.
It would serve our cause better to spread the wealth as it were, to increase our ability to find, amplify and share the truth.Read More