Woo Hoo! Just Found Out! New Chick Tract! It's called "The Chaplain." I will check it out and tell you what I think.
UPDATE: It's not the most interesting Chick Tract by far, but not bad. In terms of Chick Tracts with a military theme, it is similar to "Holy Joe" (but not as good). A couple things bothered me: 1) Benny has a soul patch which certainly is against military regulations; 2) The whole diving-on-the-grenade-to-save-your-buddy is so cliche. I'll give the tract a B- (had it contained an illustration of an angel tossing the know-it-all chaplain into the lake of fire, I would have given it a B).
Good Omen: Conservative Icon Tells Fellow Wing-Nuts to Prepare for Impeachment A couple weeks ago, I slammed William A. Rusher for his endorsement of a book that whitewashed Sun Myung Moon (scroll down to 12/16). However, I like the title of his column on the wing-nut website WorldNetDaily: "Get ready for impeachment."
Google Bomb Amway/Quixtar I have a new Google Bomb on the Google Bomb Blog. As I have pointed out previously, Amway/Quixtar is a huge operation that is also a de facto ATM machine for the Republican Party. By google bombing Amway/Quixtar, we can not only keep unwitting people from being scammed but we can defund the right (the fewer people who become part of the Scamway machine, the less money Amway can give to the GOP). Let’s google bomb them:
1. Copy and paste the following to your web site or on an internet bulletin board:
There's no point in explaining now that the "War on Christmas" was produced wholly in the depths of the Id Workshop that is the Fox News Channel. There's no point in explaining how ashamed any legitimate outlet that gave this nonsense a half-minute’s thought should be, let alone three minutes of precious airtime or five precious column inches. At this point, what with his having hung his libido on the phone lines with care, O'Reilly should be treated in the more respectable precincts of the media the same way those bearded gentlemen who claim the Rockefellers infested Harvard with space aliens are. He should be greeted at the door with a smile, a pat on the back, and a handful of Thorazine, and then sent on his way. What was worse about this, though, was that he dragged my holiday into his own megalomania. It was like going to the zoo and seeing your beloved heirlooms being thrown around the monkey house.
I don't love Christmas because some people don't. I don't love Christmas because I got caught talking dirty to a subordinate, paid her off, and now have to recoup my position as an arbiter of family values and a peddler of overpriced slacks. (If you were Bill O'Reilly, would you try to sell anyone your pants? Who would buy them? Wouldn't they have to come equipped with both a lawyer and a Hazmat suit?) I don't love Christmas because it makes me better than anyone else.
God, what a tortured, joyless place that must be to live. At least, Scrooge had an excuse. His father was a creep and his sister died, and Belle dumped him because he was trying to make a go in business. Early on, when his estranged nephew tells him he doesn't keep Christmas, he replies, sensibly, "Let me leave it alone then." A sensible response, given what had happened to him. It wasn't for him, but he didn't try to ruin anyone else's Christmas -- not even that of Bob Cratchit, to whom he grudgingly gave the whole day off. No wonder the Spirits gave him a second chance. He was at least open, somehow, to the possibilities of the season.
These guys, though, they're infinitely beyond that "wretched, covetous old sinner," to quote the (well-written) Spirit of Christmas Past. They claim to enjoy the season and then use it to bludgeon everyone else.
Happy Festivus, Saturnalia, and Pancha Ganapati I would wish all of you a Merry Christmas except that: 1) I'm not a Christian (my religious beliefs are described at the end of this post) 2) Christmas is overrated (more on this later) 3) Not wishing you a merry Christmas is one way to say f-you to the phony pro-Christmas warriors.
Saturnalia is a fun holiday. Why wait for Mardi Gras or Spring Break to party? As someone who analyzes film, I believe that It's a Wonderful Life represents an epic battle of Christmas versus Saturnalia. Bedford Falls represents Christmas and Pottersville represents the forces of Saturnalia. I much prefer Pottersville (Click here for an amusing explanation of why Pottersville gets a bad rap).
Pancha Ganapati is a December Hindu celebration. It involves the worship of Ganesha--who is my favorite Hindu deity.
Recklessly and audaciously, George W. Bush is driving the nation whose laws he swore to uphold into a constitutional crisis. He has claimed the powers of a medieval monarch and defied the other two branches of government to deny him. Eventually, despite his party's monopoly of power, he may force the nation to choose between his continuing degradation of basic national values and the terrible remedy of impeachment.
Until Mr. Bush openly proclaimed as commander in chief that he can brush aside the law, cries for impeachment were heard only on the political fringe, although most Americans have long since realized that he misled America into war. Much as he is disliked and disdained by liberals, even they have shown little enthusiasm for impeachment. In addition to the obvious obstacle of a Republican-controlled Congress, there appeared to be no firm proof of an offense that justified such action. To mention the word was to be dismissed--even by people who believe that this President may well have committed "high crimes and misdemeanors."
Phony War on Christmas, Part 395833 Here is the article by Hendrik Hertzberg that got Bill O'Reilly's panties in a bunch and led him to add The New Yorker to his official enemies list for the crime of citing "far-left smear sites."
Psst, Bill, have you ever thought about adding a magazine you write for--Christopher Ruddy's NewsMax--to your list of "Media Operations that Traffic in Defamation"? Click here and here for just a couple quick examples.
Good Eatin' for Cheap in San Diego Esmeralda's Taco Shop in downtown SD (815 C St, San Diego 92101). You can get 5 potato taquitos (rolled tacos) with a side of rice or fries and a glass of horchata for less than five bucks. You can eat on their patio and watch the trolley cars go by. You can also watch them construct the apartment building/skyscraper that has the funny structure on the roof which reminds me of this Shanghai building.
Why is this great? It’s not great because we’re receiving more hits. It’s great because a lot of Americans who became acquainted with Bruce for the first time when they saw Bruce on C-SPAN are getting the information about Bruce’s treachery from these sites. The simple fact is that if you expose someone like Bruce to the light of day, it’s not a pretty picture. This google bomb proved to be a victory for truth and a defeat for skankitude.
Why do they keep fleeing the issue? Unless the Democrats get into it, they'll simply vanish as a party, just as Paul Weyrich and Grover Norquist and Karl Rove intend. The reason why the Democrats avoid the issue, even though the party's very existence is at stake, appears to be a bone-deep inability to face the very frightening implications of what really happened in 2004. The Democrats don't want to know that the United States is clearly not a democratic country, or that the Bush Republicans are dangerous extremists, intent on building a one-party theocratic state-so that the opposition now must go beyond the usual horse-race strategizing, and get re-acquainted with this nation's revolutionary heritage. Which means, I reckon, that the opposition has to move beyond the Democratic Party.
And of course the Democrats don't want to go there. The problem is compounded by the press, which has consistently sidestepped the issue, or even ridiculed those who have tried to talk about it. And by "the press," I mean not just the likes of CNN and Newsweek and the New York Times, but even the left/liberal and progressive media, which, by and large, have also basically concurred with the Republicans in claiming that last year's election was essentially legitimate.
Must Read Tom Tomorrow on Bill O'Reilly and the War on Christmas. In case you missed last week's post that has the transcript of my conversation with O'Reilly on the phoniness of the war to protect Christmas, click here to read it.
You have to hand it to political operatives who can turn the Christmas celebration of Jesus’s birth into a nasty wedge issue, transforming a traditional message of love, peace and tolerance into one of anger, conflict and resentment.
The success of the American Right in extracting a “war on Christmas” out of a few well-meaning gestures to non-Christians, such as using the greeting “Happy Holidays,” is a testament to the investment conservatives have made in media over three decades.
With their vertically integrated media apparatus – from newspapers and magazines, to TV and radio, to books and the Internet – the Right now can take a few scattered anecdotes on almost any topic and heat them up into a hot-button issue. . .
While conservative commentators often accuse African-Americans and other minorities of wallowing in their “victimhood,” the Right’s media has learned the political power that comes from letting white men, for instance, take on the mantle of “victim.”
In the 1990s, a powerful conservative theme was the complaint against “political correctness,” which often came down to universities and other institutions applying clumsy restrictions against young white men shouting the n-word at African-Americans or using other offensive language.
Though American white men are arguably the most privileged group on earth, the “political correctness” theme allowed them to bathe in the self-pity of their “victimhood.” It allowed them to get righteous and angry against their supposed persecutors.
There is, of course, a danger whenever a powerful group begins to view itself as the victim, because their real power allows these ersatz oppressed to inflict far greater harm on their enemies than could a group without power.
I decided to adjust my approach this time because of something a friend recently told me. My friend agrees with me that Larouche is a nut job. However, he told me that many of the LaRouchies seem to be idealistic but misguided people and that a more constructive approach to them might work. So when I spoke to the LaRouchies, although I was my usual condescending self (e.g., I asked one of them if his parents knew he was a LaRouchie), I was a lot less caustic. I applauded them for being concerned about the issues but pointed out that working for a charlatan like Larouche was the wrong way to achieve their goals.
I also appealed to their self-interest. I let them know that LaRouche’s anhedonic positions against rock-and-roll and premarital sex were unnatural. I let them know about how rock music helped to make this country great. I also let them know about the virtues of recreational humping. I pointed to a male and female LaRouchie and said, “You two would make a good couple. You should hook up. You’re only young once and wasting your youth is a sin.” I don’t know if anything I said to them sunk in. I told them about this blog so maybe one of them is reading this and could e-mail me and tell me if I got through to any of them.
The aim is not to master politics but to annihilate it. Bush, Rove, DeLay, Ralph Reed et al. believe in "politics" in the same way that they and their corporate beneficiaries believe in "competition." In both cases the intention is not to play the game but to end it--because the game requires some tolerance of the Other, and tolerance is precisely what these bitter-enders most despise.
Infuriating If you want to see just one example of the depravity of the Washington press corps, then read Robert Parry's article on the media hounding and pillorying of Gary Webb who was behind the explosive stories that uncovered the contra-cocaine scandal. To no surprise, the Moonie Times and Howard Kurtz were in on the act:
When black leaders began demanding a full investigation of these charges, the Washington news media began circling the wagons.
It fell to Rev. Sun Myung Moon’s right-wing Washington Times to begin the counterattack against Webb’s series. The Washington Times turned to some former CIA officials, who participated in the contra war, to refute the drug charges.
But – in a pattern that would repeat itself on other issues in the following years – the Washington Post and other mainstream newspapers quickly lined up behind the conservative news media. On Oct. 4, 1996, the Washington Post published a front-page article knocking down Webb’s story. . .
Influential Post media critic Howard Kurtz mocked Webb for saying in a book proposal that he would explore the possibility that the contra war was primarily a business to its participants. “Oliver Stone, check your voice mail,” Kurtz chortled. [Washington Post, Oct. 28, 1996]
Exclusive: Self-Admitted Traitor Still Subject to Indictment for the Violation of the Espionage Act Invited to the White House and Hugged by George W. Bush Self-Admitted violator of the Espionage Act David Horowitz (click here and here for details) attended the White House Chanukah Party on December 6, 2005 and was hugged by George W. Bush. Traitor Horowitz in his own words:
He [George W. Bush] saw me in the line he called out "Horowitz" with a big smile on his face, then embraced me in a bear hug.
Exclusive: Bill O'Reilly Confronted about Phony "War on Christmas" The other day, I wrote a rather vitriolic rant about the phony "war on Christmas" put forth by the usual suspects. I called O'Reilly's radio show today and confronted him about it--I posed as "Stanley" from San Diego. Background: before O'Reilly took my call, he was discussing a controversy in which the group American Atheists were trying to remove memorial crosses for slain Utah troopers from public lands. After reading the transcript of my call, decide for yourself who is smearing whom:
O'REILLY: Stanley, San Diego, California. What's going on, Stanley?
O'REILLY: Because I don't know anything about him, and I didn't even know the Washington Times was involved with this, and I wouldn't smear Sun Myung Moon anyway, the way you just did, Stanley. I mean, you're taking it right out of the left-wing playbook: can't win the debate, smear the person. You ought to be ashamed of yourself.
The Difference Between Ann Coulter and Me On MSNBC, Ann Coulter was named "Worst Person in the World" last Friday because she disclosed the private e-mail address and phone number of Brad Blog Guest Blogger Lydia Cornell (who, unlike Coulter, is a hottie) to the mouthbreathers who frequent Coulter's web site who, not surprisingly, sent threats to Cornell.
Don't just laugh; rub it in to David: 1) E-mail Horowitz at email@example.com and ask him if he's going to update his readers about Bradford. 2) Let Horowitz know that I'm trying to get him indicted.
And the hypocrisy of these Hollywood elites is mind boggling. While they complain about the MSM, they are making obscene money for 20th Century Fox which is owned by Ruppert Murdoch. They continue making money for Time/Warner, NBC, Disney, and Viacom. Disney owns ABC Radio which is the major broadcaster of Rush Limbaugh and Sean Hannity. These successful Hollywood actors, producers, and directors can be in a position to do things their own way and work with their own companies. It is time for these people to know that without the talent, the studios would be lost.
The larger issue is this: the American right is comprised of bullies who want to act like victims. It's a double whammy: They get to play victim and at the same time they get to smack down Lowes and anyone else who dares to advertise "holiday trees" instead of "Christmas trees." What dicks.
This football season, there won't be any messy controversies about who should be in the title game (in case you don't follow college football, it going to be USC against Texas). I don't think a playoff would be an answer. Here's my thought: have teams go to the bowls and after the bowl season is over, have the number one and two teams play each other for the national championship. Perfect? No, but it's better than the current scenario.
Two Good Reasons Why An Indictment of David Horowitz Would be Great For America As I have noted, David Horowitz admitted to have knowingly violated the Espionage Act and is still subject to criminal prosecution for his treason (there's no statute of limitations for violation of the Espionage act). It would be an open-and-shut case because Horowitz admitted to the treacherous act in writing. Also, Horowitz would no longer be able to hide behind the fact that sensitive intelligence would be made public as a result of a trial since it deals with moot cold war issues (Horowitz published the classified documents only after consulting with an attorney who told him that if the government prosecuted him, it would risk disclosure of even more classified intelligence). So it's only a matter of getting a U.S. Attorney to proceed with an indictment.
Eric Boehlert on a Phony Journalist Corrupting Young Minds I'm glad that Eric Boehlert reported on the spectacle of discredited Moonie Times reporter Bill Sammon addressing Christian journalism students on the need for a "moral compass."
I knew about this event over a month ago when I did a Google search of "Bill Sammon" and found this article from the Baptist Press news service. I was disturbed that the article's author, David Roach had presented Sammon's Connecticut River smear against Al Gore (read Boehlert's post) as "[a]nother moment for bringing moral clarity to news coverage."
Exclusive: Wing-Nut Advocates Violence Against Members of Congress Self-admitted violator of the Espionage Act, David Horowitz posted on his website FrontPage Magazine pictures of Teddy Kennedy and John F. Kerry with the following quote from Abraham Lincoln (certainly if Lincoln were alive, he would not endorse this use of his quote by Traitor Horowitz): "Congressmen who willingly take actions during wartime that damage morale and undermine the military are saboteurs and should be arrested, exiled, or hanged." Where's the outrage?
What I'm Reading and Listening To Anti-Catholicism in America: The Last Acceptable Prejudice, by Mark S. Massa. it's a thoughtful book. There's an entire chapter on Jack Chick. Also, if you are curious about what Chick's voice sounds like, you can order Chick's audiotape, "Let's Take a Stand" for $3.00 at the Cephas Book Store. The tape is from the early 1980's and is an hour-long diatribe against Rome and about the attempts to destroy Chick's business by Catholics and others (this was when Chick faced pressure from the Christian Bookseller's Association and Christian bookstores were dropping Chick tracts because of the Alberto series). Jack is cheesed off big time.