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News Bits, September 1

September 1st, 2007

Fred Thompson is now officially running for president. A few months ago, this was a troubling worry. Now, not so much. Not that he was ever really a heavyweight, but he had a Reaganesque feel to him: no substance, but Hollywood glamour and a voice that could win votes. (For all that conservatives bash liberals about loving Hollywood, the truth is that right-wingers swoon far more easily to Hollywood stars, ecstatic at the chance of having a Hollywood star run for office as a Republican.) Why Thompson decided to run now is a bit of a mystery, as his campaign has kind of fizzled out, and few take him seriously now.

Josh Marshall reports on what he calls “The Muck Gap.” Media outlets like CNN strive to be “bipartisan” in reporting on scandals–only, it seems, when there are more conservative scandals than liberal ones, and not the other way around. Marshall points out quite rightly that even eight months after Democrats took control of Congress, the overwhelming majority of scandals continue to be Republican.

Republican Senator John Warner of Virginia is retiring, meaning that popular former Virginia Governor Mark Warner, a Democrat, may run and has a good chance of gaining a seat for the Dems next year. More bad news for Republicans, who are already facing probable, almost certain losses in the Senate next year already, as Republicans will be defending almost twice as many seats as Democrats (21 as opposed to 12).

Bush’s PR shock troops in action in Iraq: Democratic politicians now are finding that their visits to Baghdad are preceded by some unknown agency handing out “bios” of them to the troops which are edited to make them look bad.

At the recommendation of a friend, I watched the BBC’s 2005 3-part documentary, “The Power of Nightmares.” It is available online for viewing or download. It details the origins and evolution of neoconservatism and islamofascism, how they both have very similar core concepts related to neo-fascism, and how they have been the answer to each others’ problems, using each other to gain power and influence. There is a lot in this documentary to make you stop, think, and reconsider what you believe and what you have been told about the “war on terror.” Well worth watching.

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  1. September 2nd, 2007 at 15:45 | #1

    Thompson’s not officially running YET. His actual formal announcement date is scheduled in such a way that he doesn’t have to do the paperwork until some time later, and then doesn’t have to start reporting money issues until January 31, 2008… there’s a good diary with a rundown on DKos:

    http://www.dailykos.com/storyonly/2007/8/30/185219/227

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