Home > Political Ranting > News Bits 4-15-2004

News Bits 4-15-2004

April 15th, 2004

Bush Continues Unilateral Diplomacy. He seems to have a new strategy for creating peace in the Middle East: screw the Palestinians. After all, negotiations go so much more smoothly when only one side is there to deal with, don’t you think?

Bush has given his full approval to a new plan of Sharon’s that, while not exactly giving the hard-line Israelis everything they want, is far from satisfying for the Palestinians. It’s as if Bush realizes that he is so far from capable of delivering real peace to the Middle East that he has just given up trying and has gone full-force into backing Israel without even the pretense of placating the Palestinians.

And then there’s the the fact that Bush would like nothing more than to sway just enough Jewish voters to swing states like Florida his way. Can’t forget about that.

Kerry Debates Like Bush Never Would. Can you imagine a GOP event where the crowd is anything but 100% gung-ho in conforming and mindlessly cheering Bush? Which is not so thoroughly controlled that only the most faithful of the faithful are allowed in the door? Democrats filter out the opposition protesters, too–but not the internal protesters like the GOP does.

Take it one step further: Imagine a Republican who disagrees with Bush stating his point loudly very close to Bush–and Bush decides to engage the person one-to-one in debate.

Okay, have you stopped giggling at such a ludicrous image yet?

Bush is not like that. He prefers scripted events, and we all know that on his own, unprepared, he would not be able to argue his way out of a paper sack. Kerry, on the other hand, is capable of such things.

I think it speaks volumes to the integrity within the party and to the honesty of the man himself when Kerry takes the concerns of a single individual seriously enough to debate him publicly, impromptu. The protester accused Kerry of supporting an imperialist war in Iraq despite Kerry having been an anti-war activist decades ago.

Kerry made his point by explaining that we can’t just abandon Iraq; now that Bush has gotten us into this, we have to engage ourselves to make sure things run right. Like a father who finds that his kid has thrown paintballs at passing cars, we can’t just leave–we have to help clean up the mess, and then take junior home and spank him (my analogy, not Kerry’s).

However, simply the fact that the guy could get in, and that Kerry met him in debate, is remarkable–I guarantee that you will never see anything so unscripted on the Bush campaign trail.

Yet Another Case of Republicans Using Secrets as Weapons. Just like Bush and Cheney’s people decided to expose Valerie Plame’s undercover status as vindictive retribution against her husband Ambassador Joseph Wilson for daring to show up Bush as a liar, or the GOP’s intent to declassify selective documents in an attempt to smear Richard Clarke for doing the same thing…

Now John Ashcroft has unilaterally decided to declassify secret FBI memo written by Gorelick in 1995, and the GOP, clearly prepared for this in advance, is howling for Gorelick to resign from the committee (leaving a Republican majority in addition to Republican chairmanship). Of course, there’s no need for her to resign–at worst, she would recuse herself from the relevant issues. But you know that won’t satisfy the bloodthirsty trolls.

Most disturbing here is the extreme willingness of right-wingers today to declassify anything that could help them smear an opponent, while at the same time screaming bloody murder even at the hint of declassifying anything that won’t help them politically, no matter how harmless the information may be. They currently have control over what gets declassified and what does not, and they have demonstrated an unswerving desire to use that politically.

This is patriotic? Please. This is–at the risk of sounding Coulterish–treason.

Air America Radio Off the Air in Chicago and L.A. This comes, not from a bounced check as Matt Drudge is claiming, but from a dispute between the L.A. station’s owner, Arthur Liu, and AAR about Liu’s alleged double-dipping for profit while AAR was paying for use of the station.

According to AAR’s general counsel, David Goodfriend, AAR was paying Liu for the L.A. station from early February, even though AAR did not start broadcasting from the end of March. (Has it only been a few weeks since AAR went on the air? Amazing…) During that time, while AAR was paying the bills, Liu sold time on the frequency to someone else at the same time–that’s the double-dipping charge.

In protest, AAR withheld a $1 million payment (no check bounced, sorry Matt) until Liu coughed up the money he made while AAR was paying for full use of the station. Liu decided to try to cut AAR off at the knees, and turned off their programming not only in Los Angeles, but in Chicago as well.

The matter will undoubtedly reach a court soon, and at least a provisional settlement made shortly.

Apple Computer Wins. Tripling of Profits with the iPod Well, I’ve got one. Why don’t you? It really is the best of what’s out there, IMHO.

I also think that Apple should take a much closer look at branching out farther in this direction, making other consumer-electronics items. Perhaps a home media-control center which can be used to control audio, video and whatever other media you have, as well as transfer data between them? Move the video off your computer and on to your TV, or the music between your iPod, computer, and stereo system. Or perhaps an Apple cell phone, which they’ve shied away from, but one built to work incredibly well with an Apple computer.

By the way, if you are interested in helping a switcher make the move to an Apple, come and help give information to Sako, who’s now looking at a new eMac.

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  1. Tom
    April 15th, 2004 at 16:02 | #1

    Aha! I was wondering why all of a sudden KBLA 1580 was playing Spanish rock music and featuring five people debating the economy from a right-wing perspective in Spanish! Then, when I scoured the blogs looking for any news, there was nothing. Luis comes through! Thanks!

    It is, however, a sad commentary on…something or other, that news of this sort of local stuff is broken by someone blogging halfway around the world (Drudge is not on my list of things to read). Cursor used to be updated several times a day, but now barely gets updated on business days. Guess I’ll have to check The Blog from Another Dimension for any news on my local Los Angeles radio market…

  2. April 24th, 2004 at 13:17 | #2

    Agreed…on multiple fronts, James. Luis comes through again, and Drudge is not on my reading list. Why he’s on anyone’s list is a mystery.

  3. April 24th, 2004 at 13:19 | #3

    re: Kerry and debating

    I have a feeling the debates will be rigged; i.e. Bush will refuse to debate unless it’s on his terms. It won’t be a debate, but simultaneous stump speeches.

  4. Troy
    April 16th, 2013 at 10:27 | #4

    Hey Luis this is me appearing from the future to tell your 2004 self that Kerry is now Secretary of State and Apple totally revolutionized gadgetry and is worth more than Microsoft and Intel combined so load up on AAPL now!

    Hope this works.

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