Monthly Archives: September 2004

Picture Perfect

From Holden:

Check out the New York Times online today.

They have a special interactive feature on the debates, represented online by headshots of Bush and Kerry

Look at thier photo of Bush and tell me if he doesn’t look cross-eyed.

I realize it’s probably just the shadow obscuring Chimpy’s right eye that makes him look cross-eyed, but…Dayum!

Your Daily Dose of Hee

Kay. Enough politics. Let’s talk about little kids swilling margaritas:

“It is with great regret that I tell you that your child may have been exposed to alcohol today at lunch,” said the missive signed by Alexander Harvey IV, head of the private Alexandria Country Day School.

It was tequila and margarita mix, to be precise, left in the refrigerator in a pitcher and mistaken for limeade by kitchen staff, who poured it into small cups and served it to children as a lunch treat, he wrote.

[snip]

Bill Paxson, a former U.S. congressman who has two children at the school, said yesterday that his third-grader was “very excited about it.”

“Her words were, ‘Something really fun and illegal happened today at school.’ Then she proceeded to say what happened. She said it was gross and disgusting stuff. . . . She said she tasted it and it was so disgusting she couldn’t drink it.”

Margarita mix. Ew. Kids should learn early not to drink anything with the TGI Fridays logo on the bottle.

Straight-up scotch at my elementary schools or nothing at all, dammit.

A.

Our Invisible Wounded

From Holden:

MoJo blog points us to an account of life at Landstuhl Regional Medical Center:

Since Sept. 11, 2001, more than 18,000 military personnel have passed through the hospital from what staff refer to as “down range”: Iraq and Afghanistan. Of those, nearly 16,000 have come from Iraq.

Last month, 23 percent of those were casualties from combat, slightly higher than most months; the rest had either accidental or disease-related complaints.

Thirteen have died at the hospital.

Each day, an average of 30 to 35 patients arrive on flights from Iraq. The most on a single day was 168.

More than 200 personnel have come in with either lost eyes or eye injuries that could result in sight loss or blindness.

About 160 soldiers have had limbs amputated, most of them passing through the hospital on their way home to more surgery.

And it’s not just their bodies that come in needing fixing. More than 1,400 physically fit personnel have been admitted with mental health problems.

Then there are the Pentagon’s figures that touch on all casualties from the war in Iraq: 1,042 dead; 7,413 injured in action, including 4,026 whose injuries have prevented them from returning to duty. In Afghanistan, there have been 366 injuries and 138 deaths.

[snip]

A month ago, [70 -year-old surgeon Col. Earl] Hecker took four days off to fly home to see his family. He needed a break. They went out for dinner at a nice restaurant. Hecker realized during dinner that he was suddenly seeing the world differently. He looked around at the chattering people, eating their fine food, drinking good wine and he thought to himself: “They have no idea what’s going on here. Absolutely none.”

He doesn’t think people want to see it. He thinks the nation is still scarred by Vietnam and would prefer not to see the thousands of injured young men coming home from Iraq.

“I just want people to understand — war is bad, life is difficult,” he said.

Maybe it was the stress, maybe it’s because Hecker has no military career to mess up by speaking out of line, but it just came out: “George Bush is an idiot,” he said, quickly saying he regretted the comment. But then he continued, criticizing Bush as a rich kid who hasn’t seen enough of the world. “He’s very rich, you’d think he’d get some education,” Hecker said.

“He’s my president. I’ll follow him in what he wants to do,” he continued, “but I’m here for him.” Hecker leaned forward and pointed through the glass at the unconscious soldier fighting for his life 2 yards away.

[snip]

“It’s not right,” said Maj. Cathy Martin, 40, head nurse of the ICU, when asked how she felt seeing so many soldiers pass through her unit. She paused. “It’s just not right.”

She declined to elaborate on what exactly she meant. Comments such as Hecker’s about the president can lead to severe consequences for those with careers ahead of them. But Martin did add: “People need to vote for the right people to be in office and they need to be empowered to influence change.”

[snip]

[Cheryl Daniels, wife of wounded soldier Army Sgt. 1st Class Larry Daniels,] supported the war and voted for Bush. Now, she says, she wants to pull the troops out of Iraq. “I will vote for Kerry. Not because I prefer Kerry over Bush but because I don’t want Bush back in office.”

Her 12-year-old son has been saying he wants to go to West Point. Her 8-year-old daughter wants to be a military veterinarian. She’s stopped encouraging those ambitions.

Speaking alone, without her husband, she said she knew that the Army wasn’t going to like what she had to say. Like Hecker, she hasn’t got much to lose by speaking her mind, which she did, calmly and thoughtfully.

“I don’t feel we have any business being there,” she said Friday. “I think this is an area of the world that has been fighting for thousands of years, and I don’t think our presence will change anything. If anything, we’ve given them a common target to focus on. Rather than fight each other, they’re fighting us. I don’t see why my husband has to lose two soldiers or question why he’s here or see his other guys that are hurt. The minute we pull out, things will go back to the culture that is established.

[snip]

She doesn’t feel that her country, her military, is giving her enough support. She had to pay her own way to Germany and her own way back. The Army was doing almost nothing for her, she said.

“I feel like we’ve paid our dues,” she said. “And I’m done.”

Fox Gots Ethics

From Holden:

The Bush campaign insisted in the 32-page preznitial debate agreement that there be no camera shots of one candidate while the other candidate is speaking. This is their attempt to keep the audience from seeing their trained monkey smirk.

However, even Fox News is balking at that provision:

“Because of journalistic standards, we’re not going to follow outside restrictions,” said Paul Schur, a spokesman for Fox News, which is manning the pool camera for the first debate Thursday in Miami, Florida.

While your head is swimming from the concept of a Fox media whore using the words “journalistic” and “standards” in a sentence that does not also contain the phrase “we ain’t got none”, here’s CNN’s current poll:

Should the Bush and Kerry campaigns put limits on TV camera shots for the debates?

Yes

No

I think you know what to do.

Debate Prep from Big Media

From Holden:

I wonder if John Kerry is preparing for tomorrow’s debate by reading the New York Times and Washington Post. Start with the Times, which contradicts both Bush and Allawi by documenting 2,368 insurgent attacks throuhgout Iraq over the past 30 days (including this nifty map suitable as a visual aid during the debate).

Then there’s Walter Pincus and Robin Wright’s story in the Post featuring our brightest intelligence professionals discussing Bush’s mess in that unfortunate country:

A growing number of career professionals within national security agencies believe the situation in Iraq is much worse, and the path to success much more tenuous, than is being expressed in public by top Bush administration officials, according to former and current government officials and assessments over the past year by intelligence officials at the CIA and departments of state and defense.

People at the CIA ”are mad at the policy in Iraq because it’s a disaster, and they’re digging the hole deeper and deeper and deeper,” said one former intelligence officer who maintains contact with CIA officials. ”There’s no obvious way to fix it. The best we can hope for is a semi-failed state hobbling along with terrorists and a succession of weak governments.”

”Things are definitely not improving,” said one US government official who reads the intelligence analyses on Iraq.

“It is getting worse,” agreed an Army staff officer who served in Iraq and stays in touch with comrades in Baghdad through e-mail. “It just seems there is a lot of pessimism flowing out of theater now. There are things going on that are unbelievable to me. They have infiltrators conducting attacks in the Green Zone. That was not the case a year ago.”

[snip]

One official involved in evaluating the July document said the NIC, which advises the director of central intelligence, decided not to include a more rosy scenario “because it looked so unreal.”

[snip]

As for a war between the CIA and White House, said one intelligence expert with contacts at the CIA, the State Department and the Pentagon, “There’s a real war going on here that’s not just” the CIA against the administration on Iraq “but the State Department and the military” as well.

[snip]

“Everyone says Iraq certainly has turned out to be more intense than expected, especially the intensity of nationalism on the part of the Iraqi people,” said Steven Metz, chairman of the regional strategy and planning department at the U.S. Army War College.

[snip]

Reports from Iraq have made one Army staff officer question whether adequate progress is being made there.

“They keep telling us that Iraqi security forces are the exit strategy, but what I hear from the ground is that they aren’t working,” he said. “There’s a feeling that Iraqi security forces are in cahoots with the insurgents and the general public to get the occupiers out.”

He added: “I hope I’m wrong.”

Gallup My Ass

From Holden:

The latest Investor’s Business Daily/Christian Science Monitor/TIPP poll shows Kerry up 1 among registered voters, tied among likely voters.

Registered Voters

Bush 45% (-1)

Kerry 46% (+3)

Likely Voters

Bush 44% (unchanged)

Kerry 44% (+1)

Dishonest On Multiple Levels

Here’s a comparison that took absolutely no thought at all:

It appears, however, that young African American men from Washington, DC might be safer going to war than staying at home.

According to this week’s story from Scripps Howard News Service, there are 140,000 troops in Iraq, and there have been 286 fatalities from all causes since the war began in March (about 24 weeks ago). That gives us an annualized death rate of 443 per 100,000. Only about half of these deaths (147) were in combat, for a combat death rate of 228 per 100,000.

According to Center for Disease Control / National Center for Injury Prevention and Control, there were 21,836 young black men (age 18-30) in Washington DC in 2000, the latest year that mortality data is available. The total number of deaths in this group from all causes was 132, with 95 homicides. i.e. the death rate for this group was 604 per 100,000 and the murder rate was 435 per 100,000.

In other words, a young black male soldier from Washington DC would have been 36% more likely to die by staying at home than by serving in active duty in the Iraq war, and almost twice as likely to be murdered at home than to be killed in combat. Yes, that’s horribly sad, but it puts a few things in perspective.

Exactly what are we saying with this argument, which has been making the rounds of Hate Radio and the talking head shows as well as on blogs like this one even as the death toll continues to rise (the entry was written a while back). Yes, that’s horribly sad, but it’s unavoidable that young black men will die everywhere? Yes, that’s horribly sad, but as long as I, the arbiter of what constitutes a good death, determine that these unnamed black men died for a good cause, it’s okay?

Forget that trying to put anybody’s death in “perspective” requires a particularly sick kind of arrogant presumption. Let’s focus on something else that’s screwed up with this argument.

Just by making it, we are explicitly demonstrating how okay the deaths of young men are with us. We are saying, “They’re gonna die here, they might as well die there, so eh.”

Think about that for a minute.

Maybe if the people mouthing this brand of horseshit were at the forefront of efforts to curb crime in the inner cities, I’d be willing to listen to them rationalize away dead kids by pointing out their location at the time they became corpses. As it is, I can’t hear this line of reasoning without realizing it’s pretty rhetorically dumb to try to dismiss one political problem you’re not interested in solving by bringing up another thing you’re just as happy to ignore.

A.

Coalition Pawdnuh Smokin’ Buyin’ ‘Em Out

From Holden:

Italy is paying a $1 million ransom to terrorists/kidnappers in Iraq.

Who will tell Georgie?

Captors of two Italian hostages in Iraq have agreed to free the women, as early as this week, for a $1 million (550,000 pound) ransom, a Kuwaiti daily says in a report splashed over the front pages of Italian newspapers.

In Rome, both the prime minister’s office and the foreign ministry said they had no immediate comment on the report, which also led all radio and television news bulletins.

Al-Rai al-Aam, one of Kuwait’s leading dailies, quoted sources “very close to Islamic factions” saying they expected a “happy ending” for Italian charity workers Simona Pari and Simona Torretta.

The report, which said half of the ransom had already been paid, could not be independently confirmed.

[snip]

The newspaper said the kidnappers had received $500,000 on Monday and the rest would be given to a mediator on Tuesday.

It said Italian representatives took part in the negotiations, but it was not clear if they were from the government.

Family Time: ”It’s better to be a flip-flopper than a complete flop.”

From Holden:

Tonight I find myself reluctantly agreeing with Beautiful Mind:

Last week her husband, the former president, criticized CBS news anchorman Dan Rather during a stop in Manchester. In Exeter, Barbara added to that list Peter Jennings, Katie Couric, and Judy Woodruff saying they were part of the reason she know longer watches television.

However, you can probably here me *whoop* from where you sit as Chris Heinz reads my mind:

Referring to Iraq and Afghanistan, Heinz said Bush has “started two wars in four years” and said neither is going well. Noting that there are many dictators who the U.S. has not overthrown, Heinz asserted that Bush ordered the invasion of Iraq partly because of the nation’s energy reserves.

“Like it or not,” Heinz said, “young men are dying because of oil.”

[snip]

The Colby audience was largely supportive of Kerry; many in the crowd had Kerry-Edwards stickers plastered to their shirts.

Still, Heinz faced difficult — and politically astute — questions.

One student, for example, wanted to know why Kerry, relative to other Democrats, is struggling to attract strong support from female voters.

Heinz, citing GOP claims that the Democrat is weak on terrorism, responded by saying Republicans “have scared a lot of women into thinking that voting for John Kerry is like jumping into a barrel of lighter fluid and lighting yourself on fire.”

And when asked about Republican charges that Kerry changes his mind too frequently, Heinz said, “It’s better to be a flip-flopper than a complete flop.”

Family Time: “It’s better to be a flip-flopper than a complete flop.”

From Holden:

Tonight I find myself reluctantly agreeing with Beautiful Mind:

Last week her husband, the former president, criticized CBS news anchorman Dan Rather during a stop in Manchester. In Exeter, Barbara added to that list Peter Jennings, Katie Couric, and Judy Woodruff saying they were part of the reason she know longer watches television.

However, you can probably here me *whoop* from where you sit as Chris Heinz reads my mind:

Referring to Iraq and Afghanistan, Heinz said Bush has “started two wars in four years” and said neither is going well. Noting that there are many dictators who the U.S. has not overthrown, Heinz asserted that Bush ordered the invasion of Iraq partly because of the nation’s energy reserves.

“Like it or not,” Heinz said, “young men are dying because of oil.”

[snip]

The Colby audience was largely supportive of Kerry; many in the crowd had Kerry-Edwards stickers plastered to their shirts.

Still, Heinz faced difficult — and politically astute — questions.

One student, for example, wanted to know why Kerry, relative to other Democrats, is struggling to attract strong support from female voters.

Heinz, citing GOP claims that the Democrat is weak on terrorism, responded by saying Republicans “have scared a lot of women into thinking that voting for John Kerry is like jumping into a barrel of lighter fluid and lighting yourself on fire.”

And when asked about Republican charges that Kerry changes his mind too frequently, Heinz said, “It’s better to be a flip-flopper than a complete flop.”

Today on Holden’s Obsession with the Gaggle

From Holden:

Who is to blame for $50 a barrel oil? Certainly not the I Didn’t Do It Kid:

Q On oil prices reaching $50 a barrel, Senator Edwards today blamed this on mismanagement in Iraq and pointed to your own administration report that predicted that prices would be around $27 by now. And, obviously, it’s almost twice that. Are they wrong?

MR. McCLELLAN: Well, it’s Senate Democrats, including Senators Kerry and Edwards, who have blocked efforts to pass a comprehensive national energy plan. The President put forward a comprehensive national energy plan that would help make America energy self-sufficient. We need to reduce our dependence on foreign sources of energy. This President has made this a top priority of his administration, and it’s unfortunate that Senate Democrats, like Senators Kerry and Edwards, have continued to block efforts to put that plan in place so that we can reduce our dependence on foreign sources of energy.

Q So you don’t think the situation in Iraq and the administration’s handling of the situation in Iraq has anything to do with the prices going this high?

MR. McCLELLAN: Well, the hurricanes have had an impact. There are other issues relating to some of the comments made in Nigeria that have had an impact on some of this. But what — what happens here is that we go through this year after year because we manage through patchwork crisis management instead of passing comprehensive solutions. And that’s why this President led from very early on in his administration, developed a comprehensive national energy plan and called on Congress to get it passed. It would be passed if a minority of Senate Democrats weren’t blocking that plan. And that would help us to address this problem that comes up year after year.

Q No Iraqi thoughts on this at all?

MR. McCLELLAN: Go ahead.

[snip]

Q Can you say whether or not unrest in Iraq is having an impact on the oil prices?

MR. McCLELLAN: Look, I mean, I think others can probably talk to you better than I could about — from the economic perspective —

Q But you’re willing to say hurricanes and Nigeria and Senate Democrats.

Gaggle Bonus: Who Wrote Allawi’s Speech?

From Holden:

Little Scottie is slick, but not slick enough. In this exchange he’s backed into an off-hand admission that the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad wrote Interim PM Allawi’s speech to congress. This makes sense, really, as embassy staff would have been best positioned to rehearse the GOP talking points with their apt pupil:

Q Speaking of the paper, The Washington Post does a line-by-line juxtaposition of the President’s comments on Iraq and Prime Minister Allawi’s comments on Iraq. Can you tell us, today, whether any U.S. officials had a hand in crafting either the —

MR. McCLELLAN: None that I know of.

Q None that you know of?

MR. McCLELLAN: Yes. No one — no one at the White House.

Q No one at the White House?

MR. McCLELLAN: Sorry?

Q No one at the White House?

MR. McCLELLAN: No.

Q The embassy in Baghdad —

MR. McCLELLAN: I’m sorry?

Q The embassy in Baghdad, was the speech run through the embassy in Baghdad?

MR. McCLELLAN: I don’t know. You can direct those questions to them. I mean, those were, obviously, Prime Minister Allawi’s words when he was talking about — and he talked about the progress that is being made, but he also talked about the ongoing security challenges.

Q You do note the similarities, though, line by line recitations that are almost word for word the same thing.

MR. McCLELLAN: I’m sorry, what’s your question?

Q The question is whether any U.S. officials had any —

MR. McCLELLAN: No, in fact, I have not — it wasn’t in the clips I received this morning — not seen that exact article. But, again, in Iraq, the President has been very clear about where things stand. We continue to make steady progress on the ground to help the Iraqi people build a nation that is self-governing and that has the capacity to defend itself from internal and external threats. And that’s what we’re working to help the Iraqi people achieve, so that our troops can then return home once we have put them on that path.

You Go, Girrrl!

From Holden:

Listen as an unidentified republican speaks out against the Hate Ammendment during a Human Rights Campaign press conference. (audio, 41 sec.)

Get Ready, Because Here He Comes

You ever see a pitcher in the 8th inning of a perfect game? Staring down the Yankees’ star slugger? You ever see the look in his eyes?

I wouldn’t screw with this man right now. No, I would not.

A.

Crawford’s Newspaper Endorses Kerry

From Holden:

More trouble for the Bushboy, this time in his adopted home town:

The weekly Lone Star Iconoclast criticized Bush’s handling of the war in Iraq and for turning budget surpluses into record deficits. The editorial also criticized Bush’s proposals on Social Security and Medicare.

“The publishers of The Iconoclast endorsed Bush four years ago, based on the things he promised, not on this smoke-screened agenda,” the newspaper said in its editorial. “Today, we are endorsing his opponent, John Kerry.”

It urged “Texans not to rate the candidate by his hometown or even his political party, but instead by where he intends to take the country.”

[snip]

The Iconoclast’s publisher and editor-in-chief, W. Leon Smith, said the newspaper is sent to Bush’s ranch each week. “But I don’t know if he reads it,” Smith said.

Bush’s Medicare Pilot Program Ripped You Off While Limiting Coverage

From Holden:

The GAO found that Bush’s pilot Medicare program, in which beneficiaries enrolled in private health plans, cost you and I $650 to $750 a year more per beneficiary while illegally limiting coverage to certain services:

Federal investigators said Monday that the Bush administration had improperly allowed some private health plans to limit Medicare patients’ choice of health care providers, including doctors, nursing homes and home care agencies.

The investigators, from the Government Accountability Office, also said that the private plans had increased out-of-pocket costs for the elderly and had not saved money for the government, contrary to predictions by Medicare officials.

[snip]

The accountability office, a nonpartisan investigative arm of Congress, said the administration “exceeded its authority” by allowing P.P.O.’s to limit patients’ choices of providers offering skilled nursing and home health care, dental care and routine physical examinations.

In many cases, it said, the private plans covered such services only when beneficiaries used health care providers designated by the plans themselves. Beneficiaries who went outside the network of preferred providers were often “liable for the full cost of their care,” the report said.

“By law,” it said, “these plans should have been required to cover all services in their benefit packages even if those services were obtained from providers outside the plans’ provider networks.” But, it said, the administration waived this requirement for 29 of the 33 preferred provider plans, allowing them to deny coverage for some services obtained outside their networks.

The administration “did not have the authority to allow plans to restrict enrollees’ choice of providers” as it did, the report said.

Bush Medicare plan has been nothing but a rip-off from day one. He lied to congress and the American people to get it passed. Certainly this should help convince seniors to vote for John Kerry.

U.S. Military Officials Call Allawi a Liar

From Holden:

Yet another bunch of terrorsimps dissing our great Iraqi ally:

The insistence by interim Iraqi Prime Minister Iyad Allawi and many U.S. officials that foreign fighters are streaming into Iraq to battle American troops runs counter to the U.S. military’s own assessment that the Iraqi insurgency remains primarily a home-grown problem.

[snip]

But U.S. military officials said Iraqi officials tended to exaggerate the number of foreign fighters in Iraq to obscure the fact that large numbers of their countrymen have taken up arms against U.S. troops and the American-backed interim Iraqi government.

“They say these guys are flowing across [the border] and fomenting all this violence. We don’t think so,” said a senior military official in Baghdad. “What’s the main threat? It’s internal.”

[snip]

In a TV interview Sunday, Army Gen. John P. Abizaid, head of the U.S. Central Command, estimated that the number of foreign fighters in Iraq was below 1,000.

“While the foreign fighters in Iraq are definitely a problem that have to be dealt with, I still think that the primary problem that we’re dealing with is former regime elements of the ex-Baath Party that are fighting against the government and trying to do anything possible to upend the election process,” he said. Iraqi elections are scheduled for January.

[snip]

U.S. military officials said the core of the insurgency in Iraq was — and always had been — Hussein’s fiercest loyalists, who melted into Iraq’s urban landscape when the war began in March 2003. During the succeeding months, they say, the insurgents’ ranks have been bolstered by Iraqis who grew disillusioned with the U.S. failure to deliver basic services, jobs and reconstruction projects.

It is this expanding group, they say, that has given the insurgency its deadly power and which represents the biggest challenge to an Iraqi government trying to establish legitimacy countrywide.

“People try to turn this into the mujahedin, jihad war. It’s not that,” said one U.S. intelligence official. “How many foreign fighters have been captured and processed? Very few.”

Bush Boom, We Hardly Knew Ye

From Holden:

I’m telling you, Senator Kerry, hitting Bush on Iraq is working but don’t forget the economy. Consumer Confidence fell again in August for the second month running. Those consumers are your voters, go get ’em!

Consumer confidence declined in September for the second consecutive month, a New York-based private research group said Tuesday.

The Consumer Confidence Index fell 1.9 points to 96.8 from a revised reading of 98.7 in August, according to The Conference Board. Analysts had expected a reading of 99.5.

“The recent declines in the index were caused primarily by a deterioration in consumers’ assessment of employment conditions,” said Lynn Franco, director of the organization’s Consumer Research Center. “Soft labor market conditions have clearly taken a toll on consumer confidence. Still, expectations for the next six months are virtually unchanged from August.”

Economists closely track consumer confidence because consumer spending accounts for two-thirds of all U.S. economic activity.

Appalling

I’m willing to give lots of props to local reporters who do a good job covering the preznit. I think journalists on the ground, at smaller papers and in smaller cities, get a bad rap by association with their national brethren. They do their jobs (which are often dangerous, especially if they work in large cities and try to actually cover crime) for very little pay and less recognition, but they get tarred with the brush that Daryn Kagan deserves. So I try not to pick on the local guys too much.

But this is a terrible, horrible, very bad story.

September 24, 2004 — The republican presidential campaign trail came to Chicago. First Lady Laura Bush and her twin daughters attended a lunchtime fundraiser at the home (pictured) of insurance executive Pat Ryan.

The motorcade arrived at a garden party fundraiser in the heavily republican suburb of Winnetka on the North Shore this afternoon. First Lady Laura Bush smiled and waved to a crowd of neighbors and school children across the street, where some of the mothers took pictures of their kids holding homemade signs welcoming the first lady.

“This is historical. It’s not every day you get to see the first lady in your backyard and we had the same occasion happen in the summer when the president was here, as well. It’s critical for the kids,” said Karen Rigg, Winnetka resident.

“We believe in family, the small community and all they’re doing to support, you know, support efforts of life and liberty and freedom,” said Laura Griffin, Winnetka resident.

It’s everything that’s wrong with television news: it’s shallow, it’s snooty, it ignores everything in front of it in order to report on a prearranged storyline.

The web site story really doesn’t do justice to the actual report. The reporter interviewed a crowd of pastel-suited blonde-frosted rich ladies at the gate of this mansion, all of them whiter than white. None of them had anything interesting to say, but they chattered away unchallenged, offering their half-thought-out opinions hemmed in with that satisfied suburban look, that utter lack of curiosity they share with their presidential idol.

No one from the Kerry campaign was actually interviewed on camera to respond, and no mention was made of the fact that reporters were not deemed worthy of getting a word in with the precious Bush progeny.

It’s not bias as much as it is laziness, I think, but that alone is enough to drive me up a tree.

A.

Department of Welcome To The Party

Amazing what “journalism ethics” types choose to worry about:

But experts in law and journalism are nonetheless at odds over whether the spectacle of reporters testifying about people who gave them information in confidence sends the wrong message, to the public and to potential sources. Some say it may do lasting damage to the bonds of trust built between sources and journalists over several decades.

“Every time I hear about one of these reporters going in to speak about their sources, my stomach drops to my shoes,” said Jane Kirtley, a professor of media ethics and law at the University of Minnesota. “We’re in a crisis on this. I’m absolutely terrified about how this is going to turn out for media credibility.”

You know, there have been some other threats to media credibility in recent years. I just can’t think of them right now, but ….

Wen Ho Lee

WMD

Running five-minute reports on the weather

Editing tapes of First Ladies so that it sounds like they’re admitting to felonies

Loving portraits of the Bush twins’ visit to fundraisers and absolute silence on the fact that the girls are immature lushes who wouldn’t know a responsible action if it slapped them in the face with a bag of nickels

Basically ignoring the mounting casualties in Iraq

The Dean Scream

Whitewater

Yeah, that’s some of them. But no, it’s testifying about sources who’ve lied to them in order to destroy an innocent woman’s life, that’s the real “ethical” scandal.

A.