What Would Tony Have Done? Since Terri Schiavo died this morning, it might be a little tasteless to bring up a pamphlet I found in Westwood yesterday. It was published by famous anti-Catholic preacher Tony Alamo. Like Jack Chick, Alamo adheres to the belief--not uncommon in 19th century Protestant thought--that the Roman Catholic Church is the whore of Babylon from Revelelation. The main difference is that Chick's publications on the matter are entertaining (e.g., the statue of the Beast/Jesuit General giving the Devil's Horns salute in "Here He Comes" is bitchin'). On the other hand, Alamo's literature is mostly words and few pictures--boring.
Anyhow, someone left an Alamo tract in a newspaper dispenser in Westwood titled, "Terri Schiavo Says Let Me Live" (It's available online). In it Alamo claims that he could have healed Terri:
If I am permitted to spend some time in the room with Terri Schiavo (her father and brother can be there or anyone else as long as there are no distractions), I know that if I were permitted to talk to her and explain to her the things that God has already provided for her, such as salvation and healing, and if I were permitted to pray with her for her, I know that she would be healed. I’ve done this before with people who seemingly were hopeless.
Recently I prayed for a man who the doctors said had less than an hour to live. His mouth was filled with a tumor as big as a lemon, and a tumor in his brain was so large that it was pushing one of his eyes out of his head. The man now belongs to God. He’s alive and happy. This incident occurred more than sixty or seventy days ago. There are thousands of testimonies like this. This glorifies God. Of course the Roman Catholic government and media are not looking to exalt God or give God glory. The things that the people in this world are doing today are absolutely insane, and if they are not of the devil, what more could they do to prove they are of the devil?
Alamo also has harsh words for Terri's religion, Roman Catholicism:
There are many people in the secular government and throughout the world that would be saved and healed if miracles like this were printed and broadcast in the media rather than watching the man in Rome sitting on a balcony, waving his hand or a wand at people. He has his reward. It’s obvious that the Vatican and all religions do not believe God, but I do. Mark 16:17-18 states, “These signs shall follow them that believe; In My name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues; They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; THEY SHALL LAY HANDS ON THE SICK, AND THEY SHALL RECOVER.” God gives this power to those who believe all His Word. Christ is the Word of God (Rev. 19:13). “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ [the Word of God], and thou shalt be saved [and healed]” (Acts 16:31). . . We are not to live by our opinions or ideas. Our opinions and ideas, the Word of God indicates, is of Satan. We have the Word of God in this world which tells us the right way to go. What I’ve written here is not my opinion or my idea. It’s the Word of God. The Roman cult, its “new world order,” and its media are soon to be punished eternally for its blatant disregard for God’s Word, God’s people, and all humanity.
The media has painted me to be a Catholic hater, yet the woman whose life and soul I’m fighting for is a Catholic. What’s happening on television and in the media today is that Rome, the new world order, and the mouth of Satan, the media, is attempting to condition the world into believing that it’s all right to kill someone if they’re sick, including family members. According to God even if they will to die, someone who knows God should be allowed to pray for them, to raise them up from their sick bed. Then if God takes their life, at least there was an attempt made to follow God’s perfect instructions. If that woman’s soul goes into eternity unsaved, she will be in Hell. So the ones responsible for murdering her are not only condemned for murdering her but for sending her soul to Hell before she had an opportunity to repent and believe the Gospel.
I and my church are praying that at least one of you who has any ability to save this woman’s life that you repent before it’s too late for you. The Lord is very capable of extracting the spirit out of your body by just telling it to come out, and if He does, your soul will be in Hell for eternity. And in the end Hell with you and Satan in it will be cast into the lake of fire (Rev. 20:14-15).
By the way, Alamo failed to heal his wife Susan--who died of Cancer in 1982.
What Group Is More of a Threat to your Freedom than Al Qaeda? According to Bill O'Reilly, The American Civil Liberties Union. He said it on his radio show today.
UPDATE: No, I don't have the transcript but I suspect that someone from Media Matters will report on this and included the transcript. Welcome to all of those who got here from the Daou Report. If you're new to the site, check out my conversations to talk radio people on the sidebar under "Phone Calls." Email me at email@example.com and tell me what you think about the blog.
The funding matrix behind Ms. Schiavo’s parents, Robert and Mary Schindler, and their lawyers illustrates the contradictory agenda of conservatism. Much of the money to finance the Schiavo litigation and public relations has been provided by foundations associated with the Philanthropy Roundtable, an innocuous-sounding outfit that serves as a central committee for major conservative donors.
The Roundtable foundations, which boast names like Mellon Scaife and Smith Richardson, simultaneously pays for the traditionalist “culture of life” litigators and for libertarian groups that promote draconian cutbacks and the withdrawal of government services from the poor. In the bright future that they’re bringing us, medical care for those who cannot pay their own way— including Terri Schiavo—will presumably be provided from direct-mail lists and church-collection plates. Don’t tell them there’s no such thing as a free lunch.
Ironically, the right-wing policies promoted by the Philanthropy Roundtable and its pet politicians would have doomed Ms. Schiavo long ago. They constantly claim that the most important cost in medicine today is the prevalence of tort lawsuits against doctors and hospitals. The costs of Ms. Schiavo’s hospitalization and care have been subsidized for well over a decade by the proceeds of her husband’s successful suit against the doctors who failed to diagnose her bulimia (which stopped her heart and destroyed most of her brain).
With nearly all of that money already spent, Ms. Schiavo now depends on Medicaid to support her hospice care. In many other cases like hers, patients must rely on Medicare. Had the right-wing extremists in Congress prevailed in their zeal to slash or abolish those programs during the past 10 years, not much would have been left to pay for her or others like her—not to mention every other precious life that needs but cannot afford life-saving medical care.
In this demagogic moment, conservatism pretends to moral seriousness without confronting the real problems of life, death and financial constraint raised by the Schiavo case. The President and the Congress passed the decision back to the courts so that they could blame the judiciary. The right-wing ideologues tell us that we must protect every life, while demanding that we lower taxes, cut medical programs and deny care to the poor.
Exclusive: Transcript of Phony "Nobel nominee" confronted about his Deception Those of you familiar with this blog know that with the exception of Air America Radio, I'm not a big fan of talk radio. For those of you not familiar with this blog, read the transcripts on the sidebar under the title "Phone Calls."
Probably the best thing was when yesterday, Hammesfahr, the physician who falsely referred to himself as having been nominated for a Nobel Prize, did a telephone interview for the John and Ken Show (apparently, he thought that John and Ken would be like pro-Schiavo talk radio jocks like Hannity and throw him softballs).
Here is the hilarious transcript of the last part of their conversation with Dr. Hammesfahr in which they take Hammesfahr to task for his phony credentials. Note: I started recording late so the first part of the first sentence got cut off. Also, I can't tell which one is John and which one is Ken so when either one talks, I list it as JOHN/KEN:
JOHN/KEN: [The claims made on] Fox News Channel and MSNBC by Sean Hannity and Joe Scarborough, to be specific, that you're a Nobel Prize nominee has be found not to be true because the man who nominated you--Florida Congressman Mike Bilirakis, a Republican--is not qualified to make Nobel nominations. Are you aware of that?
HAMMESFAHR: Um, I assume that he is--um, I think that is [unintelligible but sounded as if he said "a spin happening."] I don't really know that to be true.
JOHN/KEN: What to be true? Are you a Nobel Prize nominee or not?
HAMMESFAHR: Yeah, I am.
JOHN/KEN: Based on what? The Congressman's letter?
JOHN/KEN: Well, according to the Nobel Prize web site, you have to be a member of the Nobel Prize committee, or you have to be a past winner, or you have to be a university professor that's selected by the Nobel people in order to nominate somebody.
HAMMESFAHR: I don't know that was true at the time that I was nominated--which was back in 1998 or 1999, somewhere in that time frame.
JOHN/KEN: Well, the Nobel Prize web site has a list of criteria to nominate somebody and a letter from a congressman is not on the list.
HAMMESFAHR:Well, I'll have to go take a look at that.
JOHN/KEN: In addition, it says that information about nominations is not to be disclosed publicly or privately for a period of fifty years--which would bring us to around 2049.
HAMMESFAHR: Okay, well, I'll have to go and take a look at that, too--
JOHN/KEN: You mean you never looked up--
HAMMESFAHR: Hold on. Hold on. Hold on. Hold on. Hold on. [note: yes, he said "hold on" five times in a row.] Are you interupting me or what is the story here?
JOHN/KEN: No, go ahead and answer. It's hard to believe that you didn't look into it. That you didn't look this up until now. I mean this is several years that you've been running around saying that you were nominated.
HAMMESFAHR: Alright. Well, guys, It's been fun talking to you all. See you later.
HAMMESFAHR HANGS UP
JOHN/KEN: Well, we never got to the part about Terri Schiavo.
Hey, Wait a Minute One of the things that has never ceased to amaze me is how the same people who claim to be pure as the driven snow on issues of personal morality are huge violators of the rules of political morality. One such person is Michelle Malkin. I previously wrote about Malkin and this phenomenon during the Jessica Cutler flap; the upshot of the post was that Malkin presents herself as the type of person who would faint from the vapors at the site of an erect penis but who has no problem associating with foul characters like Joseph Farah and Sun Myung Moon.
Imagine how the [Schiavo] poll results might have turned out if ABC News had informed participants that in a sworn affidavit, registered nurse Carla Sauer Iyer, who worked at the Palm Garden of Largo Convalescent Center in Largo, Fla., while Terri Schiavo was a patient there, testified: "Throughout my time at Palm Gardens, Michael Schiavo was focused on Terri's death. Michael would say 'When is she going to die?' 'Has she died yet?' and 'When is that b---h gonna die?'"
Attended a Premiere Last Week I was able to attend the premiere for D.E.B.S. last week at the Arclight Theatre. D.E.B.S. is an Austin Powers-esque spy farce--except that the spies are hot babes in schoolgirl uniforms. I didn't make the after-party.
Whaaaat!!!! While I would be honored to be drawn by R. Crumb, I can assure you that he has never drawn me. Why do I tell you this? Because when you do a search of my name on Google Images, the cover of Crumb's Despair pops up. What's the deal with that?
NewsMax Update The other day, I wrote about a cheesy ad that was on NewsMax that promised to make a guy irresistible to women. I didn't have time to check it out but I guessed it had to do with pheronomes. I was wrong. A reader emailed me the skinny on the advertiser: They're trying to sell horny guys a psychological program to regain the attractiveness that was trained out of them. Sounds like a knockoff of Ross Jeffries' work. Quick note on Jeffries: I was at a party in West LA a couple years ago, and I spotted Jeffries. I said, "Hey, aren't you the guy I saw on the Phil Donahue Show a few years ago?" He asked me not to rat him out to the partygoers and we spoke on the patio. He told me his program on seducing women really worked. I'll take his word for it.
Quick note about Stowe: she has done a good job of picking film projects but one egregious lapse was the Stallone bomb Avenging Angelo. I saw a marketing screening of it at one of the studios back in 2001. The film was ghastly. After the screening of the film, marketing people gave the audience questionnaires. I wrote that it was the worse film since Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band. I'm proud that I played a small part in making it go straight to video. Sadly, Avenging Angelo was Anthony Quinn's last film. He deserved better.
Movie I went to see Gunner Palace--even though I didn't have the cash to spare. Partisans on either side of the Iraq War debate won't find any ammo. It's a slice-of-life film that looks at the day-to-day experiences of American soldiers who are in the areas around Baghdad. It shows the stressful lives of soldiers who aren't sure if the bag they pass on the road is full of garbage or is an IED (improvised explosive device) that could kill them. Some critics might not like the film's dearth of structure but it's definitely worth watching. Quick note: there are some very talented musician-soldiers over there. Eight out of ten stars.
What Do You Expect From NewsMax? I'm glad I googlebombed Chris Ruddy and his piece-of-crap rag NewsMax. When I checked out NewsMax today, I noticed an ad that reads, "Imagine, No More heartbreak from women ever. . . using these forbidden attraction secrets the liberal media is terrified you'll discover." It's kind of ironic that the ad was on Susan Estrich's column. When I clicked the ad, here's what I got. I'm not curious enough to give my information to find out what the secret is. I'm betting it has something to do with pheromones. Let me know.
In short, [Kathleen] Willey was at least as shaky a source as Bill Burkett, the retired Texas Air National Guard officer who leaked the now infamous memos to "60 Minutes" supposedly documenting President Bush’s dereliction of duty in 1972. Even if it took Starr two immunity grants and a failed criminal prosecution to admit (in a final report) that Willey was a bad witness, CBS should have been leery of her from the start.
So why didn’t "60 Minutes" pay the price for its credulousness about Willey? Well, the answer sure ain’t "liberal media bias." Even after prosecutors concluded that Willey had lied under oath, TV talk shows kept booking her to trash Clinton. She’d become a star.
That’s also true of the infamous Swift Boat Veterans for Truth. Careful reporting by The Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, The New York Times and Chicago Tribune documented that their attacks on Sen. John Kerry’s Vietnam record were provably false in every important respect. Yet they kept showing up on TV.
Film Stuff Backlog One of the reasons I wanted to go on hiatus is that I have a backlog of stuff to write such as the promised coverage of the recent DIY Convention that I hope to have by the weekend. Here's some film stuff I did: I went to an advance screening of Guess Who starring Ashton Kutcher and Bernie Mac. Before the event, they had us sign a waiver form saying that we would not discuss the film on the net, etc. However, since I liked the film, I think they'll cut me a little slack. Don't get me wrong, this wasn't a comedy masterpiece but it would have been worth the money had I paid to get in.
Also, last Thursday, I went to the premiere of The Upside of Anger. I actually got in to the actual premiere without crashing. You see, when it's a relatively small premiere in a big theatre, they allow some of the hoi polloi to be a part of the event. I saw Kevin Costner in the audience. I didn't see anyone else in the cast (but I wasn't looking for them because I'm not a celebrity-watcher; quick note: I saw cast member Erika Christensen when I crashed the Swimfan premiere and party). I didn't like this film; it gave me a sour feeling. Of course, I don't think I'm part of the demographic the film is aiming for. I saw the film and thought: "What's the point?" I didn't relate to the characters.
Before I went to the Oscars party on Oscars night, I hung out with the crowd outside the Kodak Theatre. I saw some of the people from David Bossie's Citizens United with an anti-Hollywood sign (contrary to Citizens United's claims, very few of the Hollywood crowd entering the theatre saw their mocking sign. On the other hand, because I and other bloggers have previously googlebombed David Bossie's name, when you do a Google search of Bossie's name, sites that expose Bossie as the cretin he is pop up first. We own that bitch's name. One final note, Bossie's people had foam "We're number one" hands but the index fingers were purple to signify the Iraqi election.
Actually, the most prominent political sign was coming from a plane with a streamer; it read: "BAD ACTORS MAKE WORSE GOVERNORS: ARNOLDWATCH.ORG" Also, some guy in the crowd has a Clint Eastwood for president sign. Whatever.
The targets of the liberal blogosphere are conservative activists; the target of the conservative blogosphere is the free and independent press itself, just as it has been for conservative activists since the ’60s. For the Republican Party, pseudo-journalism Internet sites and the blogosphere are just another way to get around “the filter,” as Bush has dubbed the mainstream media. “One of the things that I think the blog world offers is an opportunity to provide another source of information,” said Republican National Committee Chairman Ken Mehlman on CNN’s Inside Politics in February. Blogs are “something we encourage supporters of the president and Republicans to be very much involved in.”
“The way I look at this,” says Daily Kos’ Gardner, “[Gannon] is just one more piece to a bigger puzzle that we’ve seen for the past couple months -- attempts by the Republican media complex not necessarily to fight the media but to become the media.”
But unlike traditional news outlets, right-wing blogs openly shill, fund raise, plot, and organize massive activist campaigns on behalf of partisan institutions and constituencies; they also increasingly provide cover for professional operatives to conduct traditional politics by other means -- including campaigning against the established media. And instead of taking these bloggers for the political activists they are, all too often the established press has accepted their claims of being a new form of journalism. This will have to change -- or it will prove serious journalism’s undoing.
Los Angeles Mayoral Nonendorsements I am living in LA but I don't endorse anyone for mayor. I don't feel like I'm a part of this city (which is a sign of mental health because LA blows). LA is not my city. I am leaving for San Diego as soon as I can.