from the house on boo corner to the world itself, bully boy sells fear

from the prophethic pens and pencils of isaiah, his most recent the world today just nuts entitled 'the house on boo corner.' when the polls drop what does bully boy do? start talking 'osama' start talking '9-11' ... it's old, it's tired but he still does it. poor winnie, piglet and eeyore.

prophetic? this went up yesterday but was supposed to go up last sunday. that's when blogger/blogspot decided to 'white list' the common ills. sound like the days of joe mccarthy? yep, to me too. so while c.i. had to fight the 'white list' there was no way for posts to be e-mailed to the site. to put up new art work, the program 'hello' is used by all of us. 'hello' just sends it to your site. (after it's at a site, like 'the house on boo corner' is, you can carry it to another site without having to e-mail).

if you missed it the administration and the bully boy have been rumbling (like a distended stomach) about catching osama. now for 5 years, he's been the last thing on their mind. but bully boy's polls have dropped, yet again, and it's the only trick they have to play.

i didn't blog last night, you're not missing a post. fly boy surprised me yesterday afternoon with tickets to a play so we went to see that and had a very long night.

sherry e-mailed wondering why i don't link (in posts) to robert parry? i usually forget, to be honest. i see them up at the common ills, usually when i'm having my morning coffeee and watching democracy now, and then, when evening rolls around, i'm thinking about something else.

i do read him, he's 1 of my favorites. he may be number 1 on my list of favorites.

but i'm usually rushing to get the things done. but here's a piece of his latest called 'Bush Flummoxes Kafka, Orwell:'

Bush, of course, insists that the United States does not torture despite extensive evidence that detainees in the Iraq War and the War on Terror have been subjected to simulated drowning by "water-boarding," beatings to death, suffocations, coffin-like confinements, painful stress positions, naked exposure to heat and cold, anal rape, sleep deprivation, dog bites, and psychological ploys involving sexual and religious humiliation.
But Bush says none of this amounts to torture, even as his
protection of abusive practices now ventures beyond word games into mind-bending legal rationalizations.
Bush's lawyers went into federal court in Washington on March 2 and argued that a new law that specifically prohibits cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment of detainees -- known as the McCain Amendment after its sponsor, Sen. John McCain -- can't be enforced at Guantanamo Bay because another clause of the law grants these prisoners only limited access to U.S. courts.
In other words, the Bush administration is contending that the McCain Amendment might make it illegal to abuse the Guantanamo prisoners, but that the inmates have no legal recourse to enforce the law by going to court and getting an order for the abuses to end.

the torture issue is something that elaine and c.i. have hit hard on repeatedly. i'm not sure that i have much to say on it that they haven't already covered. i think our reaction ties into isaiah's cartoon above, where we let some idiot so scare us that we stop caring about what we're supposed to stand for or what humanity is supposed to mean. it helps that they are 'detainees' (prisoners as elaine and c.i. have pointed out). we don't see them, we don't know about them so we, as a country, don't care too much. and when a 'soft,' little word like 'detainees' is used over and over, it doesn't seem all that important. if they were called prisoners, we might care more. but by calling them 'detainees' ... well they're just detained, right. 'detainees' sounds short term.

this administration has broken more laws and moral codes than any of us could count. but give them credit for knowing how to market their schemes and scams. as some 1 who worked in public relations, and worked successfully in my field, i'm amazed that so many people latch on to their jargon. they keep an eye on marketing. they don't care what they do as long as they can sell it to the american people.

thinking people need to stop using the administration's terms. that's how they set the agenda and control it. your average american, scared to death by the bully boy's fear mongering or not, is not going to be comfortable with prisoners being held without trial for years and years. but call them 'detainees' and you're deflating the balloon. 'detainee' implies temporary. as c.i. noted once, it makes it sound like you've been stopped while going through customs because you forgot to declare something.

in marketing, you sell the product by making it appealing. some of you may be too young to remember the early days of tampon commercials (they haven't changed that much). it was thought that talking about periods was just 'too much' for the average american to handle. so what to do? set up a commercial with clouds and horses and smiling faces and then mention the product a few times. you're selling a lifestyle because you can't sell the product.

so the woman at home is thinking 'if i use kotex, i'll be just as happy as that woman! my period usually hurts like hell! but look, she uses kotex and she's riding a horse!'

they can't sell prisoners. so the administration uses another word (like 'feminine napkin') that sounds softer. and when asked about these prisoners, they always go to 9-11. they can't sell prisoners to americans, but they can sell the 'lifestyle' factor. they can use a mild word ('detainees') and put it in their context (world trade center, pentagon, et al) so that the 'audience' is thinking 'oh my god!' and the discussion is derailed.

the fact of the matter is that if any 1 at guantanamo was involved in 9-11, there would have been a very public show trial a long time ago. they're not involved. they are prisoners of war. afghanistan did not declare war on us. they were 'guilty' of the fact that osama was in their country. when we asked them to turn him over to us, they responded (as we would), show us the proof and we will.

we wouldn't. we said 'turn him over now, proof comes later.' if another country did that to the u.s., there would be a huge outcry. so we go to war with afghanistan and, like in any war, the people fight, on both sides. we, the 'victors,' imprison the captured and bought (you can make a healthy living rounding up people and selling them to unquestioning american forces if you tell them that the people are 'taliban' or 'al quaeda').

so what we have is prisoners, and they're prisoners of war. that's the reality. and every time john mccain wants to play his 'i was a prisoner of war' card, no 1 ever asks him, 'well, as a prisoner of war, how do feel about the prisoners in guantanamo?'

that's where we are. we hold prisoners of war for years and years. we torture them and we never get honest about it. we use soft sounding terms to disguise reality.

here's some more reality from democracy now:

Study: Antartic Ice Sheet Shrinking Significantly
In environmental news, the Washington Post is reporting scientists have found the Antartic ice sheet is shrinking by as much as 36 cubic miles a year. Researchers say the results, published in the journal Science, provide the first evidence that the sheet's total mass is shrinking significantly. Scientists said the decrease is likely linked to global warming.

we've done that too. and what does bully boy call it 'climate' something. we're all aware of the term 'global warming.' but he comes into office and the order is use the milder term. so most reporters and news orgs. follow his edict as though they're working for him.

if we don't the shrinking of the artic ice seriously, no 1 will be working for any 1.

bully boy can plan all the trips to mars he wants, but if the earth becomes unable to support life systems, we've got nowhere to go. we've really trashed our home. if al gore was in the white house, we might be trying to address the issue of global warming. but bully boy is the oil man who could never find oil. he kept drilling and drilling and coming up dry (there's a sexual metaphor there, for any 1 who wants to explore). so now he's the 'big boy' who brags about how his old friends have to call him 'mr. president.' all part of proving his manhood - like strutting around on a carrier with a stuffed crotch or cozying up to big oil, where he never made it, and letting them trash our only environment.

well, hopefully it did enough for him that laura got a little action. the rest of us got screwed as well but not in the good way.

for humor and commentary check out c.i.'s 'other items' and 'NYT: The paper sends Linda Lavin to report on the Katrina tapes.' who knew they were hiring linda lavin at the paper of record? i hope they'll hire bonnie franklin next because she was always my favorite of the women on cbs' sunday nights.


news wrap up?

so the cowards (of both parties) in the senate fell over itself to extend the patriot act. army major general geoffery miller won't testify in the case of army sgt. michael smith who was 'creative' with the use of dogs and prisoners. presumably, miller would have either have had to discuss the actual policy or lied. 'cheney urges americans' should save more but you can only stretch a mcdollar so far, dick. in reply, america urged the administration to create some actual jobs and to raise the minimum wage. and bully boy appears to be confessing that osama was part of team bush in 2004! - wonder if karl rove brought him on board?

in the world of media, the new york times has apparently hired linda lavin and america's funniest videos has had to outsource to the czech republic. in entertainment, kat has 2 new reviews completed: "Kat's Korner: Nina Simone -- Golden" and "Kat's Korner: Cat Power's Greatness."

but most of all, and why i delayed my post for later tonight, betty has a new chapter. c.i. had an idea for a way that might help her struggle less with each chapter and betty's really excited about it. though you'll laugh when you read the latest chapter, you won't get why or what's coming up until the next 2 chapters. i think this is what is known as a 'plot point' (check with c.i. on the term).

people are coming to life these days. can you believe the change from two years ago? this is from democracy now:

Bolton Speech Disrupted in New York
And in New York, a group of protesters stood up and held signs as UN Ambassador John Bolton gave a speech at New York University Wednesday. One sign read: "US interests -- torture, illegal war, secret abductions, racial profiling, war crimes," among others, and quoted Bolton's infamous statement that: "Diplomacy is not an end [in] itself if it does not advance U.S. interests."

must have been a shock to him, a week after time magazine fawned all over him.

elaine's got something you should go read right away - if you haven't already read "No quote tonight -- it's already too long." sherry said reading it was like looking at old photographs with friends. i think that's a great way to look at it.

last thought for tonight: have i plugged trina's kitchen? i'm not sure if i have or not. i don't blog on saturdays or sundays and by monday, i'm usually focused on something else. but trina's kitchen is trina's site and trina's offering commentary and recipes. trina's mike's mother and a longterm member of the common ills community so make a point to check out her site. she posts on saturdays.

this is brief, i know. i was wanting to be sure to know betty's latest and it was a long day long before that. though this is brief, i'm kind of shocked by the amount of items we noted. bully boy and osama, dick cheney's foolish economics, go down the list.


tongue biting

As we approach the third anniversary of Bush's invasion of Iraq, with domestic spending being gutted, tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans being extended, and the Bush administration submitting a request for an additional $72.4 billion in war-related funding, the National Priorities Project (NPP) has issued an invaluable new report demonstrating the financial impact of the war on taxpayers in every state.
Upon approval of the supplemental funding bill, total spending on the war and occupation in Iraq will exceed $315 billion. Nobel Prize-winning economist, Joseph Stiglitz, estimates that when all is said and done the final price tag will reach somewhere between $1 trillion and $2 trillion.The NPP highlights the unfathomable trade-offs our nation is making in order to continue funding the Iraq occupation -- other spending priorities that are being missed -- both at the state and national levels.

that's from katrina vande heuvel's "The Costs of War." i noted harper's magazine yesterday and would've noted her piece if i'd known of it. there are a number of figures worth knowing, so if you haven't already checked it out, please do. also check out the common ills tonight. c.i. and ava will have a joint entry and that's all i can say or i'll spill the beans. check out "Kat's Korner: Cat Power's Greatness." kat's review made me buy the cd today. read the review and you may as well. more tomorrow night. i'm biting my tongue tonight and every 1 knows i'm lousy at keeping a secret so that's it.


russ comes out swinging, you just wish joe would finish and get off of you

here's a fact for you: total projected cost of the war per u.s. household, based on a january estimate: $19,600.

how's that feel? it's from the 'harper's index' page nine of the current issue of harper's magazine. c.i. did an excerpt from lewis lapham's 'The Case For Impeachment' and that hooked me on getting this issue.

$19,600. if you live in apartment complex, think about how everyone unit is paying $19,600. if you live in a home in a residential area, look up and down the block and realize that every home is paying $19,600. not putting it away for a child's college tuition or using it to pay the bills right now, but for an illegal war.

bully boy took a gamble (an illegal 1) and now we're all paying his debt.

that just amazes me.

okay, nsa hearings.

what can i say but 'thank god for russ feingold.' seriously. oh, i can say something else, 'thank god i didn't have to hear dianne feinstein.' i had to answer the door and sign for a delivery at 1 point and maybe she was on for that brief moment, but i don't think so. i did hear her laugh at 1 of arlen specter's 'jokes' near the end. i think it was her. it was a female's laugh and she was the only woman on the committee. but maybe it was a staffer?

did every 1 who wanted to follow the hearing listen via pacifica?

russ had the fight in him today. i'm not sure every 1 else did. it's amazing that while bully boy's tanking in the polls and getting only a 34% approval rating from the american people that democrats and republicans on the committee can't do any better than they did today.

i thought pacifica did a great job and gave a lot of information. i had no idea that 15 of the 18 senators serving on the committee were lawyers. (we all know feinstein isn't a lawyer because she can never speak without reminding every 1 of that.)

i thought biden . . .


joe biden is the guy you think you want to have sex with. you're going at it and about 30 seconds in, you suddenly realize, 'he is awful at this!' and you're just praying that he's a premature ejaculator so you can be done with the whole thing quickly. only thing is, he's not. so you're stuck going through the motions while he does his mechanical love making.

he showed promise for about 30 seconds and then started yammering on and on.

i loved pacifica's wrap up and think larry bensky did a wonderful job throughout. i also loved c.i.'s take on what had to be the most insane moment, when orrin hatch started whining about how tough it was to get a fisa warrant. fisa's the easiest to get a warrant from. not just because they rarely turn any request down, but also because they have been set up to be an easy court. can't get a warrant through the regular court system, go to fisa.

but there was orrin whining about how hard it was and how they might have to explain why ___ has them suspicious.

what world does he live in?

the government wants a warrant to spy on some 1. you're going to have to offer more than 'because i say so.'

c.i. has a whole thing on that moment where 'miss priss instant cuckoo: o hatch!' looked like the biggest fool to sit on the judiciary committe. no easy task but he was helped by the fact that john coryn didn't speak.

bully boy broke the law. he admits to his actions.

he needs to be impeached.

that's my thought for the night. that and that while russ was a fighter, joe was really bad sex.


are you trying to be you or some 1 else? if the latter, why?

late. thought about not posting. i've never done anything for that many hours straight as i did helping out on sunday's the third estate sunday review. i'm not griping. dona was telling all of us that we could go ahead and go as sun up approached. but there was 1 problem after another. we lost whole features and had to redo them. go down the list and make it of any and everything you think could have happened.

it was an endurance test. wally had it in him to stay until the end but he also had college work to focus on (a test on monday and a paper due as well). i called him to see if my posting would make him feel like he had to. he said he couldn't believe how tired he was (he's not crazy about his paper but he thinks he aced his test). mike had told him to just chill tonight and that's what he's ended up doing. (he was on his way to bed after we got off the phone.)

i called because every 1 already has enough pressure on them and if i was adding to wally's pressure by posting, i wouldn't be posting tonight. a lot of us try to live up to the example c.i. sets at the common ills. i don't. elaine doesn't. that's because we've know c.i. forever and we're quite aware that c.i. can outlast us. in college, c.i. could party all night, turn around and go to a 1st of the morning class, make incredible points, and move on to the next class. c.i. is an insomniac, true. but it's also true that we're talking incredible endurance, incredible focus and an ability to juggle that exceeds what you'd find in a circus tent.

we know c.i. brings that same 'can do' attitude to the common ills. we love it. we love the site, we love c.i. but we knew long ago that we couldn't do that. but for others, it's the example, the standard. c.i. doesn't encourage that. doesn't push it. tells people to take time for themselves.
plus, the common ills community is huge. so there are more demands there than any of us have. when c.i. says 'write it but do it without me' on something we're all working on, it's because it's a sensitive subject for a member. which member? c.i. can tell you. c.i.'s always been able to do that. 1 nickname was 'the journal' because it was like having a journal recording everything. if elaine and i had a disagreement, we'd call c.i. and say 'what happened? who is right here?'

i can keep a few of my readers straight. i can tell you a ton about sherry because she's been reading since i started this site and she's become some 1 i think of as a friend. anytime i check the e-mails, the 1st thing i look for is to see if sherry's written. but i can probably only keep track of 15 of my readers in terms of being able to spit out their most important issues.

c.i. is not competative. you'll never meet any 1 less competative. if you've got something you're doing, it's yours. c.i.'s not going to do it. in college, c.i. was being asked to run for a student office 1 year. for obvious reasons. the person running for re-election comes up and explains how 'important' the position is to them. so c.i. doesn't run. (c.i. won as a write in.) in classes where the prof would tell you your grade before the final so you'd know how well you needed to do, c.i. wouldn't let the prof say it. why? c.i. was always the a student. every 1 knew it because after any test, if the prof went over them in class, he or she would tell you the true or false answers, the multiple choice answers and then, on the essay section, say 'for an example of the perfect essay see' c.i. other people would bask in that. i would. c.i. would slink in the chair.

i do anything, half-assed or full on, and c.i. is there with praise. try to praise c.i. and you'll get 'oh please' or something else dismissive. there is no complimenting c.i. (ask elaine if you don't believe me.)

i bet some of you reading this know some 1 like that. i hope you do anyway. i know a lot of talented people who are extremely conceited. i know very few who are modest like c.i. if you do know someone who is talented and gifted and modest, you know you're lucky to have them as a friend and you learn quickly that there's no point in using them as a measuring stick because you'll come up short every time.

i'm writing this for people who are trying to 'keep up.' i doubt any 1 who blogs in the community is competative with c.i. because when you get to know c.i., you realize that competition is not an option and that it only makes c.i. feel awkward (and start offering self-put downs or being self-negative). but i do think a few people are looking and thinking 'geez, c.i.'s posting 3 to 4 times a day. i should be able to manage at least once.'

when a similar thought was voiced to c.i. all it did was make c.i. feel bad and feel like the fault belonged to guess who. (no, not me. c.i. grabs none of the glory but will gobble up all the blame and guilt.)

it's not worth it to measure yourself against any 1. the few times c.i. has rallied competition wise is when some 1's tried to steal something. i remember a really sick, twisted lover in college trying to steal c.i.'s idea for a creative writing assignment. that's 1 time i saw c.i. really angry about something other than a social justice issue.

and what did c.i. do? stuck with the same original idea. and ended up getting the highest grade in the class. why? here's the lesson folks. because the jerk could rip off c.i.'s idea but not write what c.i. lived as well as c.i.

sherry could create a site called politics and sex and attitude and screeds tomorrow and try to do what i do the way i do and she'd fail. she could create a site tomorrow and write in her voice and be a huge success. (she's very gifted and i've repeatedly told her to start a site.)

sherry can be the best sherry. i can be the best rebecca (or the best i can be). but i'd be a lousy elaine copy or c.i. copy. the lesson here is to be you. if you speak in your own voice, you're going to win in the long run.

it reminds me of a huge battle c.i. had with a racist and sexist prof. so sexist, have i told this story before?, that he would say things like the wacs weren't interested in helping the country out in wwii, just in getting laid. say that in a lecture to the class. the professor did a lot of academic studies. co-authored them. people hated him but were intimidated by him, students were. so he got away with that crap.

until c.i. ended up in his class. c.i. aced the class and did it by being c.i. others tried to echo the prof and spit back whatever he spewed. not c.i.

or, a philosophy prof. he had an idol among philosophers. 1 class, on plato, had very little plato in it because the prof would always go back to his idol. anyway, c.i. wrote an incredible paper which was 1/3 of the grade. the prof didn't like it. (c.i. didn't care for the prof's idol.) he refused to accept it. he gave it back with all these remarks that were non-academic scribbled on it and told c.i. to redo it. said 'do it this way and you'll have an a.'

c.i. didn't do that. instead, c.i. took the paper to the dean, showed how unprofessional (and personal) the remarks the prof had written were, showed up with all the index cards and research backing up each point. the prof was told he had to accept the paper and the dean said he'd be looking over the grading of it.

this took up a lot of time, this battle. and the easiest thing to do would have been to just redo the paper the way the prof wanted and get the easy a. but c.i. said 'if i do it his way and fail, i've failed twice, on the grade and failed myself by not being true to myself.' every 1 on campus that knew c.i. was saying 'just do it the prof's way.' c.i. would rather have taken a failing grade than tried to 'write like' the prof.

i've come out of my own shell. i used to be so scared of speaking out. (i know that's hard to believe if you've read this site very often.) a lot of that is the personal issues i've had to deal with shortly before beginning this site. but it's also true that due to those issues, i realized that how little so much i thought mattered actually did.

i get credited by elaine and c.i. for my 'strength.' i think a lot of it is due to finally having enough and seeing how little surface things matter added in with seeing c.i. over the years.

like i said, in college, i learned quickly that i couldn't compete with c.i.'s endurance. but what i did learn in the last few years, and hopefully there's some 1 around you that you've learned this from or that you will learn this from, is that in the end, you have to answer for what you did. not who liked you, not who thought highly of you. c.i. demonstrated that then and demonstrates it now.

when the freak got pissed that c.i. linked to joan mellen and defended her (mellen wrote an incredible book, read it), there was a lot of 'oh my god!' from people. c.i. couldn't care less. truly. there are times, if c.i. thinks someone's been hurt, that it is an issue. but there will be no guilt attached to a slam for being true to yourself.

there's a scene in the pelican brief that elaine and i always tease c.i. about. julia roberts is in class and being asked about a court decision on gays and lesbians. julia says something about every 1 is equal and the prof says something like 'well the court felt differently' and julia responds evenly and calmly something like 'well they're wrong.'

that is any course we've taken with c.i.

dexter filkins gets criticized for his phoney reporting now. a little. and it's picking up still. the criticism. but there are people who are still shocked that in real time, november 2004 during falluja, c.i. would criticize dexy. they shouldn't be. c.i.'s not interested in being 'right' today. c.i. has and will take people saying 'you are wrong' and the attitude is always 'i'll be right in the long run.'

i'm stronger these days and a part of that is because of the example i've seen from c.i. over the years. money, relationships, go down the list, none of it is important enough to sell yourself out and i've seen an example of that up close. are there rocky times as a result? yeah, usually there are. but you win in the end. the 'win' is that you stayed true. you didn't water yourself down to please some 1 else. take it from some 1 who spent most of her life, too many years, watering herself down to be liked, there's no point in that. there's no long term reward.

in the end, you actually end up feeling very hollow.

there are 3 points to tonight's entry. the first, already noted, is to encourage every 1 to realize they need to do their best, not some 1 else's. the 2nd is dexy and i'll get to him in a minute. the 3rd is that march is coming up on us.

on that. it's the 3rd anniversary. what are you going to do. are you going to find your voice now and speak out against the war? if you already have your voice, are you going to speak out more? if you're saying 'well i don't know what to do' are you actually looking for things to do?

here's something you can do, danny schechter, "Why Protest Media Coverage March 15?"

The national day for local media protest announced last week on Mediachannel.org received such a positive response that the organizers of United For Peace and Justice, the country's largest anti-war coalition, decided to change the date from March 21 to March 15 to make a focus on the media the kickoff event for this years week-long "spring offensive" against the war to mark the third anniversary of the US invasion of Iraq.
Activists, peace groups and media reformers are being encouraged to organize protests in every city and community.
I wanted to add some personal comments to this campaign because journalists as a rule and Mediachannel until now has reported on protests, not helped organize them. Usually, media people are not activists but this case is different. Here the issue is not about politicians or causes, but our own profession and industry.
If we are not willing to speak out on a problem so close to home, who will? If we don't stand up for media freedom and against deceptive news practices, how can we lecture or editorializes other institutions to practice ethical standards, accountability and transparency?
I know there are colleagues of ours who find protests, well, unseemly, and likely to do no good. Some readers feel that way too. To these "nattering nabobs of negativity," to quote the late and great Spiro T Agnew, a politician with loose standards but clever language, I would respond, it is the duty of all of us who believe in the need for honest journalism to say so publicly.
Remember the phrase "my country right or wrong, my country!" The response is always "My country right or wrong, but when wrong, set it right." The same goes for the press.
I have been fighting this media battle for a long time. In his foreword to my book WHEN NEWS LIES on media complicity and the Iraq War, Michael Wolff calls me "the 2000 year old" media critic in the spirit of Mel Brooks and Carl Reiner’s hysterical 2000 year old man shtick.
Yes, I have been doing it a while but mostly in the media, dissecting news on the radio or producing TV and films. In the case of Iraq, I have written two books and made the documentary WMD (Weapons of Mass Deception). I think I know what I am talking about.I have spoken on the issue all over this country and throughout the world. And yes, I know from painful personal experience, how easy it is to be ignored, or patronized and marginalized.

but you know what? given the choice between doing what he believe and staying silent, danny schechter would choose doing what he believe in. so should you. (i don't know danny schechter, by the way. i have read his books and his website and c.i. speaks highly of him.) 30 years from now, people will still be talking about danny schechter. other 'names' even 1s on tv currently? we'll have forgotten them. they've done nothing. they've done the job that causes no waves and makes no impressions other than to their bosses who are so amazed how well trained the clapping seals have turned out to be.

the people you remember are the 1s who stand up. the 1s with courage. the 1s who don't sit on the sidelines waiting for some 1 else to act. think of your life as a movie. shouldn't you be starring in your own movie? otherwise, you're just a supporting character. you're there to say 'really, and then what happened?' and serve as recap for events that others did. don't you want to be the star of your own movie?

now for c.i.'s "And the war drags on . . ." because c.i. took on dexy again:

Now for the New York Times. Prepare to chuckle (and thanks to Rob for pointing it out, I often skip the book section and had intended this to be one of those days):
But [Paul L.] Bremer bears a heavy responsibility for keeping silent -- and so does General Sanchez. If we can ssume that Bremer's recollection is correct, then General Sanchez's remarks indicate that Baghdad was indeed out of control, that both he and Bremer knew it and that without more troops, it was likely to stay out of control. [. . .]
By staying silent, Bremer ensured that there would be no public debate on the merits of deploying more Americans troops. By staying silent, he ensured that there would be little public discussion over the condition of the Iraqi security forces, whose quality he doubted. [. . . .]
What do we learn from the above? It's by an in-house writer at the paper so it's safe to assume (no surprise) that the Times argument remains "Stay until more are slaughtered!" Yeah, they're making the idiotic argument that "more troops" are needed. Got to protect those foreign investments, got to protect that "free market," no need to leave until we've privatized everything. That's their real argument. The Times can support human rights . . . to a point. The point is where human rights intersects with a "healthy" profit motive. At that point, the paper tosses human rights out the window.
Listening to the scolding of Bremer (who deserves it) for his silence is anyone else thinking of all that the paper of record has been silent on? The Bully Boy hump? The NSA warrantless and illegal spying that they sat on for a year. And so much more. (For years and years and years.)
If you're thinking, "Who is the Times to scold anyone for staying silent?" wait, it's about to get a whole lot funnier (and more hypocritical). The review is entitled "Desert Sturm" (oh, aren't they cute -- in their minds). And the writer? Dexter Filkins.
Dexter Filkins who stayed silent on the slaughter he should have witnessed in Falluja. Supposedly he was there in November 2004. But to read his rah-rah, video game reporting, it was all, people killed, people who had it coming to them. And it was so 'totally cool' judging by his breathless reporting. (Did the American troops have to swat him on the snout to get him to stop huming their legs?) It was all so glorious, so wonderous to read Dexy's "award winning" "reporting." The piece that took over six days to make it into print. Who edited that report? Who had to clear it? Why did it take so long to make it into the paper?
Those are questions Dexy may have to answer someday (probably sooner than he thinks). But the man who couldn't report the truth on Iraq (not just on Falluja, on the entire occupation) now wants to scold Bremer for staying silent. It's interesting to watch the liars turn on one another.
As the Judith Miller controversy was in its final stages, I said repeatedly that if she helped get us into war (she was part of a large number of helpers -- she didn't do it alone), it's the "reporters" like Dexter Filkins who keep us over there by refusing to report the truth. Now Dexter wants to scold Bremer for "staying silent"? Filkins' press releases live from the Green Zone will not be forgotten. He can pretend like the only one staying silent was Bremer but it was him too. Had the Times written the truth about the occupation long ago, America might have woken up sooner.

that's the c.i. who has inspired me for years and continues to inspire me. but i couldn't write that. for 1 thing, i loathe the times too much to go through it the way c.i. does. for another, in november 2004, i'm not sure i would have gotten how silly dexy's 'award winning' report was. or the problems with it. but mainly, i'm not c.i. i can do a full rebecca on dexy. and if i approach it that way, i'm the only 1 who can.

so the point is, you've been given a voice, are you going to use it? march is coming up. the 3rd anniversary. are you going to be silent (a silent extra in your own movie of your life - worse than a supporting player)? or are you going to speak out?