Friday, August 15, 2003

Well there I was, quips ready to go, website repaired (thanks to a certain saint from Santa Cruz) when the screen flickered and you know the rest. So here is the amended version, including some remarks about powerlessness.

It wasn't even two hours into the blackout of the Northeast before politicians began blathering about how citizens were handling the inconvenience "as only Americans can." I wonder how Americans would feel if their power had been knocked out LAST MARCH by violent foreign invaders who then occupied our nation and took forever to restore basic services. I wonder how Americans would handle it after months, rather than just hours.

And if you think being stuck at an airport during a power outage is bad, try getting pinned down at one by M-16 fire.

You're right, Governor Pataki, we ARE the greatest people in the world because can lose use of our blenders and hairdryers for an entire evening without anarchy engulfing New York! I am so proud of my state and its wonderful people!

Several million people were without power and the little emergency juice that was available was immediately diverted to politicians so they could circulate hot air. How's that for priorities?

At the center of the blackout is the Niagara-Mohawk power grid in upstate New York. NiMo is the outfit that had a spill of highly irradiated water in a control room at its Lake Ontario Nine Mile Point nuclear waste production facility -aka/ power plant. They dealt with the crisis by padlocking the room's door and ignoring the problem for the next several years. So it's not hard to believe that NiMo caused this fiasco.

God knows radiation can't elude the stopping power of a padlock!

I had the batteries in the transistor radio for less than five minutes before I heard the first call for more nuclear power plants. So although there was almost no looting or petty crime reported during the blackout, the nuke lobby had no qualms about exploiting the powerless at their most vulnerable moment.

Tough break for Bush -- the entire Northeast was plunged into he murky shadows in which he most effectively operates, right when he was out in sunny California.

Bush was in the Golden State using overpriced power to help cast artificial murky shadows on yet another Republican effort to reverse the electoral will of the people.

If you played a Republican in one-on-one basketball and beat him, he'd protest, "Wait a minute, we didn't say 'first one to 5 baskets,' we said 'first one to 10'." As you continued to win, 10 would become 15, 15 would become 20 and so on.

Republicans don't understand that "You just can't win with some people" is only a figure of speech. They want to fix it so that anyone who isn't an R literally cannot win.

Once Gov. Mike Leavitt demonstrated the ability to toxify a state the size of Utah, he became the natural (if you'll forgive the term) choice to head Bush's EPA.

No questions asked-- Leavitt vastly improved Utah's environment-- for corporate polluters.

Leavitt's appointment is great news to Big Pharma -- in particular the manufacturers of cancer drugs.

How about how that Court-appointed Bush administration! Without its vigilance, we'd be in danger of crackpots purchasing fictional weapons from some non-governmental sting.

Arms distribution facilitators like Kissinger and Associates have helped spread shoulder-mounted missiles as if they were party favors. The Bushists highly publicized bust of some poor dupe didn't remove even one of those lethal devices from the seedy worldwide arms market.

While they were at it, why didn't they just sell the guy some fictional weapons of mass destruction? Then they'd have had a bust Bush really could have used!

It's a horrible, horrible thing that Laci Peterson was murdered. It is even worse that the corporate media will ignore thousands of other lethal injustices as it spends vast amounts of time and energy on macabre over-analysis of her case.

Those wondering how much longer the troubles in Iraq might persist should consider Afghanistan, a country Bush claimed to have liberated nearly two years ago. On just one day this week over 50 people died in Afghan violence. The Afghan heroin trade is thriving. Contrary to published and broadcast reports, the Taliban has been anything but eradicated. When contrasting Afghanistan with Iraq, we should consider that the early days of US troops in Afghanistan were a picnic compared to what has transpired in the first few months in Iraq. Despite Bush's pronouncement that his Afghan military effort was victorious, indigenous Middle Eastern concerns hunkered down for a long and very nasty battle of attrition. It has just begun and now a similar catastrophe is unfolding in Iraq. Although it seems impossible, Bush's aircraft carrier stunt will become even stupider in retrospect than it was at the time.

California seems likely to get itself a new, extremely unqualified leader, who communicates in trite bumper-sticker lingo and who has a history of questionable business dealings. His ascendancy will be the result of an "election" in which he will not be the choice of the majority of voters. Trends used to start in California but in this case it's nearly three years behind the rest of the nation.

This may be the first statewide election with more candidates than voters.

The Bushist regime is now hassling many Americans of conscience who went to Iraq in an attempt to stop (and eventually observe) a war that was unnecessary and insane. Many of these people risked their lives as human shields. We all must rise up and vehemently protest the McCarthyistic harassment of these brave souls. What we really need is a government prosecution of those who shielded Bush for the lies he told to promote the war that those courageous activists knew was senseless long before it began.

FUN FACT ABOUT THE DANGEROUS LEFTIST MEDIA: In the past week the dirty liberals at the New York Times have run op-ed pieces promoting the reintroduction of DDT and the resurgence of nuclear power.

John Osterlind, a reactionary blabmeister on Boston's WRKO AM, has been suspended for two weeks (reportedly WITH pay) for saying on the air that the Palestinian people should be "eradicated." So the rule for on-air personnel at WRKO is simple -- so long as your calls for genocide are aimed at a group that reactionaries enjoy denigrating, you get a paid two-week August vacation out of it.

John Osterlind should be fired for advocating genocide. Until he goes, no self-respecting Bostonian should listen to anything on WRKO.

First they came for the Palestinians, but I said nothing because I wanted WRKO to put my call on the air....

John Ashcroft is now blacklisting federal judges who shorten mandatory sentences. But since he is such a great Christian, he has asked Pat Robertson to scrunch up his eyes and pray his special death prayer for the wayward jurists.

According to the New York Times: "Officials denied that Prime Minister Tony Blair's government knowingly used false information to create a sense of imminent threat from Iraq." Willfully maybe, but not knowingly, after all, how could anyone who knows anything have advocated that war?

Kaiser Ashcroft was disappointed to learn that a copy of the Bill of Rights is about to be returned to North Carolina after a 138-year absence. Ashcroft feels that any state that has survived without the Bill of Rights for that long has corroborated his view that the document is unnecessary.

The new Bush action figure is very realistic-- at the first whiff of danger it heads directly for Nebraska.

Pull its string and Karl Rove talks.

OK, to be precise: pull its string and Karl Rove lies.

I've received numerous requests to endorse Howard Dean for president. I'm told we all have to get behind him now or risk losing next year. Unfortunately, I am not sold on Dean in a number of areas. How is he on unions? Why did he support the Yucca Mountain nuke dump? How can he tell us that there is no way to cut the military budget? (Even if he is only fiddling with semantics-- we need leaders to unequivocally challenge runaway militarism rather than slither about with plausibly deniable doublespeak) Next year we will have no choice but to support the Democratic candidate. However, during the primaries, beggars can and should be choosers. At this point, this beggar is far from choosing Howard Dean.


OK I told you about a Saint who helped with the site. Dozens of others also wrote me with kind offers of assistance and helpful web woe advice. I am trying to answer everyone but in case I miss you, sincere thanks for all the kindness. Now back to the saint. The troubles he found explained a lot and have been eradicated. Besides saving the soy bacon of babes in the electronic woods, he is also an environmental activist with a lot to say. I strongly suggest you join his mailing list by clicking the link below and then sending the email it creates

or join on the web here:

His list is hosted by riseup net, which also hosts this list. To help support riseup:

Recent audio commentary from me is now available on my pal Scooter's deluxe guerilla audio website, Acksis of Evil http://acksisofevil.org/ chuck full of subversive high tech hilarity.

for a direct link to mp3's of my remarks:

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Link of the day is the Peace Abbey http://www.peaceabbey.org

It's nearly time for the hottest jazz confab of the autumn -- Boston's Equinox Music Festival, featuring the John Coltrane Memorial Concert with very special guest Pharoh Sanders!

For tickets and info: http://www.jcmcsite.com

Friday, August 08, 2003

TODAY'S QUOTE: "You're through!" -- George W. Bush abruptly dismissing a reporter who attempted a follow-up question to W that he had already taken the time NOT to answer just a minute or so earlier.

The comment occurred at the press conference during which Bush said he was responsible for the blatant lie he told in the State of the Union address. Of course if Bush really held himself accountable for all he says then why would he let the media ask follow-up questions to those he avoids by offering pat response that invoke 9/11?

So when a reporter wants to try to switch the subject back from 9/11 to the original question, W announces "you're through." But journalists need to do is continue to ask questions of Bush and his handlers. Jar's answers (or lack thereof) will provide the American people with all they need to tell Bush, "No, YOU'RE through."

George W. Bush owes the world , America and especially the people who have died in his war to stand there and answer every tough question there is about his willy-nilly invasion and occupation of Iraq.

On the other hand , why should an unelected leader behave as if he were accountable to the people?

Nevertheless , if the court-appointed Bush administration-appointed president really respected the troops and their loved ones he would take all the heat he has coming in Washington while his soldiers fry on the desert in Iraq.


Bush is so determined to teach Iraqis about democracy that he'll get it done even if it requires kicking in the doors of every home in the country.

Democracy will come to Iraq... right after the WMD are found.

W claims he doesn't want to expose censored information that links the Saudis to the 9/11 assaults because it "would help the enemy." Hey W, whether or not it helps Democrats is of little consequence, the important thing is that Americans are owed the full truth about 9/11.


How nice of Court-appointed President Bush to reduce funding for air marshals at the exact same time his Fatherland Security Department has decided to alarm us about increased dangers of terrorist attacks on commercial airliners.

This air marshal cutback is a good test for Tom Rigid's American KGB. If his organization is at all competent it should be able to trace the increased air-terror threat directly to Pennsylvania Avenue.

" Group Linked to Al Qaeda Seen Behind Jakarta Blast," trumpeted an August 7 New York Times headline. Well it's a start but wouldn't we be much better off if they could learn to spot al Qaeda in front of such blasts?


Arnold Schwarzenegger's father would be so proud of his son's California gubernatorial candidacy -- if only the former member of the Nazi Party hadn't died some years ago.

Herr Schwarzenegger would have particularly loved how a small reactionary base was able to undermine the democratic will of the people and thus provide a crackpot from Austria with the chance to seize power.

If he manages to steal the California governor's office, Arnold may not stop in Sacramento...Considering what Ashcroft is doing to the Constitution, by 2008 it may be a simple matter to overlook the requirement that presidents must be natural-born American citizens.

After all, what's a little residency requirement when we've already overlooked the rule that presidents must be elected?

Let's face it , Schwarz possesses all the tools necessary to be a just the kind of California Republican the national party loves -- he's a bad actor who has no qualms about laying wreaths on Nazi graves.

The last hope is that a truly legitimate Hollywood figure like Spongebob Squarepants will emerge to save California.


They say that Colin Powell is just a token and tool to the Bushists but if the neocon artists didn't genuinely respect and care for Powell, why would they take the time to announce his retirement for him?

That said , the suggestion that Powell would step down as Secretary of State if Bush were actually elected in 2004 came as quite surprise to many people, particularly Colin Powell.

Voters can render the Powell speculation moot by announcing W's retirement for him -- at the polls a year from November.


Bush's best hope for making the economy appear to be on the mend by the 2004 election hinges on millions of Americans turning the statistical corner from "unemployed" to "hardcore unemployed." That way they'll end up so far downstream that won't be visible on any economic flowcharts.

Republicans always say they don't want to get involved in class warfare and they mean it. Not even Rumsfeld would to consider deploying troops to that front.

A fair discussion of economic justice is one area where Republicans are actually self-effacing enough to be able to determine that they are outclassed.

Besides, class warfare might end up as a fair fight and nothing brings out dormant pacifist tendencies in Republicans faster than the prospect of a fair fight .


Back in Palestinian society, former Israeli captives walk a gauntlet of Israeli Defense Forces wherever they go. Israelis are now worried that the ex-prisoners are beginning to plot to bring some of the freedom of movement they learned to enjoy in jail to the rest of their non-countrymen. If they succeed, exercise yards will soon be turning up all over the Occupied Territories.


According to the 8/6 New York Times , "The Army, stretched by commitments in Iraq, is undertaking dramatic changes in the way it organizes and deploys troops in combat." In fact, in what would be a radical departure from the Bush Doctrine, the Pentagon may even consider only deploying troops when and where there is a legitimate need for them .


Demonstrating what a dangerous radical he is , Howard Dean recently said he didn't see how the military budget could be cut.

For starters , how about ending the production of unusable-under-any-circumstances nuclear weapons , Howard? There's several dozen billion dollars you could lop right off the top of military spending.

And there'd be a health benefit, Doc . The nukes would no longer deteriorate in the USA, spreading carcinogens into our environment. So you could actually defend the American people and save billions at the same time. Now there's some fiscal conservatism we could all live with!

And while we're at it Gov/Doc Dean , how about putting military contractors through the same scrutiny that veterans go through when they attempt to get health care for all of the illnesses they contracted and injuries they suffered while on active duty? In fact, why not put the softies from Pentagon procurement at the VA hospitals and put the VA claim-authorizing staff in charge of buying the bombs? Again billions would be saved and our people would be better off.

Gen. Peter J. Schoomaker says that the Army will need more troops to meet the worldwide (lack-of)demand for US military presence. Fortunately, as domestic poverty increases, career options narrow and so there will always be a large number of young people desperate enough to sign on as Hessians in America's effort to supply muscle for the cause of globalization.


Judging by the sleazy practices it has been employing in its long distance phone business, MCI's calling plan "The Neighborhood" may soon refer include the "general population."


Now that John Poindexter's plan to institute a terrorist lottery has been rejected, it looks like the CIA will have to find other means by which to fiscally prop up international miscreants.

Office pools are generally harmless but when they can lead to news reports that begin, "Well the latest terrorist massacre was good news for one local resident..." it's a pretty good bet they've gone too far.

No one is more disappointed in the abandonment of Poindexter's terror lottery than Bill Bennett.

Karl Rove will now privatize terror roulette and use it at Las Vegas night GOP fundraisers.


Tom Kelly , a spokesperson for the British prime minister, apologized for likening the late David (no relation) Kelly, the British scientist who died under questionable circumstances a few weeks ago, to the fictional character Walter Mitty . He did this in hopes of keeping his job with another fictional character, Nude Emperor Tony Blair .


I'm glad the Episcopalians elected a gay bishop but to read the papers you'd think our society is teetering on the brink of mayhem because there is a split in the Episcopal Church.

Oh no! Some stuffed shirt protestants are upset about a world a bit more complicated than the fake one in which they reside at the Sunday morning coffee klatch? Heaven forbid!

Gosh, maybe someday there will even be a gay Catholic bishop. Nah-- gay Catholic clergy is a concept just too crazy to imagine.


Depressing news about Paxil -- a study indicates that the drug leads many children and teens to commit suicide. As a precaution, the FDA is advising parents who are concerned about this danger to take some Prozac and sit calmly until they forget what they were worrying about.


No Joke

The pesticide industry tipped its lethal hand when it had the Hoover Institute's Dr. Henry I. Miller broach the subject of resurrecting DDT to fight West Nile disease in an 8/7 New York Times op-ed piece. We should respond to Miller by telling him to carry his polluted water right back to the noxious industry that wants the green light to renew a senseless assault on the environment.

Here is what West Nile Disease is: an illness that has been around for a long time that now has been provided alarmist publicists by the pesticide industry. This sleazy concern isn't happy enough that the court-appointed Bush administration-appointed Bush Administration's is attempting to drop the ban on human testing of pesticides, now it wants to bring reintroduce of its most hideous and pervasive concoctions.

I see birds every day in rural upstate New York that weren't around when I was a child because back then DDT drove many species to near extinction (and several more all the way to extinction). We mustn't let them scare us into sending the birds to the brink again because we aren't smart enough to properly assess the "risk" of mosquitoes. With all the rain we have had this spring and summer in the Northeastern USA, nobody would still be alive in this region if the West Nile virus were anywhere near the threat that they claim it to be. So far THREE people have allegedly died in 2003 from this illness. Any self-respecting flu outbreak kills hundreds more than that. The three who did die this year would have been likely to succumb to any of several dozen other medical bad breaks because they just weren't well enough to fight off assaults on their immune systems. This is a scam that was cooked up by the reactionary Manhattan Institute to get us to soften up on the wholesale dumping of noxious chemicals into the environment. Now the West Coast Hoovers do their part by mentioning DDT as a solution. It is a solution- a deadly one. Americans are MUCH more likely to get sick from DDT than from mosquito bites.

Of course nobody wants to be bitten by mosquitoes. Sane precautions can help reduce such discomforting bites. These include:

•Covering yourself, including your extremities, with light-colored clothing.

• Limiting your outdoor activities in the early morning and early evening, when the mosquitoes are most active.

•Sweeping out puddles of standing water thus eradicating mosquito breeding grounds. A natural corn-bristle broom will whisk away mosquito eggs while leaving the ground safe enough for children to play upon.

• If you really think it necessary, use some sort of repellent - but search for a natural solution. Light citronella candles. Eat your B vitamins.

• Build purple martin houses in your community. These birds devour mosquitoes by the pound -- and pond.

• Make sure that your screens, windows and doors are properly fitted. If you can see light through a crack, it's the Holland Tunnel to an insect. This will also help save energy during heating season.

But the main precaution we must take is to tell our elected officials that we realize the pesticide industry poses a much greater threat to our health than the mosquitoes it is employing to panic us so that we will drop our environmental guards.

What would you rather risk? A mosquito bite or cancer? All those birds that weren't around when I was a kid were simply dead canaries in the mineshaft of the environment. DDT killed them while mosquitoes mutated and survived. If we wipe out the birds, it won't be long until we fall prey to the same poisons that did them in. I have no doubt that we lost many more people to earlier DDT infestation than we will ever lose to the West Nile virus. "West Nile" is a popgun compared to the weapon of mass destruction that is George W. Bush's foreign policy- an illness far more lethal and widespread than any mosquito could ever carry. Yet I wouldn't even spray DDT on the White House.

And that's no joke.


A final note …Bob Hope was so old that he actually outlived Vincent Canby, who wrote his obituary for the New York Times. In and of itself, that's a pretty good joke. I loved Hope when I was a kid and he certainly brought a lot of joy to many people. Unlike latter day comic jingoist Dennis Miller, Hope actually showed up in person and as close to the front as he could get to entertain the troops he said he supported.

But after hearing some commentators suggest that Hope invented topical humor I feel compelled to remind everyone that barbed and timely political comment goes back to Ancient Greece. If you are speaking strictly of stand-up/broadcast comedy, Will Rogers certainly preceded Hope by several years. And unlike Bob (or Miller, for that matter) Rogers wrote most of his own stuff. And it was funnier, gutsier and much more of, by and for the people than almost any comic since Rogers was lost in an Alaskan plane crash all those years ago. I wonder how far Joe McCarthy would have gotten had Will lived just another ten or fifteen years? Joe McCarthy and Bob Hope thrived during the same period. And there is no question about how Miller would have gotten along with Tailgunner Joe.

I also think it's appropriate to consider how Hope's USO TV specials made many of us grow up dreaming of the day we could go to our own war so that we could see Bob growl at Joey Heatherton in person. But I wanna tell ya... how about those body bags!

Thanks... for the casualties!

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