Thursday, March 25, 2004

Color me: Unimpressed

I am unimpressed by this whole 9/11 commission. With a money-making book deal casting a shadow over the primary "star-witness", I'm feeling more and more that this commission is becoming a joke.

Everything the commission has "discovered" thus far, I knew myself on 9/12: neither Clinton nor Bush took terrorism as seriously as they should have before 9/11 and citizens like us are all culpable in our nation's unpreparedness for that day.

Friday, March 12, 2004

Liberal Blogger: Madrid Massacre Bush's Fault

Ask the 500+ victims and their families of the Spanish train disaster if Bush has made the world a safer place. Unfortunately, with the abysmal state of the world's media, only a few will probably realize that Bush's small, puppet controlled brain had something to do with their suffering. It will take a leader who thinks and leads based on principles, not campaign contributions to show the world a set of examples, to restore the American archetypes of democracy instead of the archetype of violence that Bush has set in motion.

Thursday, March 11, 2004

10, 9, 8, 7,6......

I am counting down to the first commentator or blogger to suggest that, ultimately, it is the fault of the United States (or President Bush) that all those people died in Spain. Let me check my watch....
Does Johnny Damon Have a Drug/Alcohol Problem?

A few weeks ago I heard an interview with Johnny Damon on WEEI Sports Radio down at the Red Sox's spring training camp. During the interview, Johnny Damon sounded (to my ears) either drunk or on drugs.

Now I read in today's Globe that Damon was benched during the season last year because the manager, Grady Little, thought that Damon was "engaging in too much late-night revelry".

Damon had this to say, ""Never one time last year was I incapacitated where I was so drunk that I didn't know what was going on...I'm smarter than that. I've been around. I've seen the toll it takes on guys. I'll go out and have a drink, but never was I to the point where it affected my game."

Sounds like what an alcoholic would say.

Between today's story and the interview I heard in February, I'm worried.

Wednesday, March 10, 2004

More Biased News Stories

This story reports that
"Teens who make a one-time pledge to remain virgins until marriage catch sexually transmitted diseases about as often as those who don't pledge abstinence, according to a study of the sex lives of 12,000 adolescents."
Actually, when the article attempts to explain the study's method it says the following:
The analysis found that in communities where at least 20 percent of adolescents pledged to remain virgins, the combined STD rate was 8.9 percent. In communities with fewer than 7 percent pledgers, the STD rate was 5.5 percent.
Isn't just as likely that kids are more likely to take the pledge to protect themselves in communities where STD rates and unprotected sex are already at high levels and that it is the OTHER 80% of kids that are driving up the teen STD rate?

Instead of "The pledge leads to unprotected sex" couldn't the study just as well be confirming "Where there are high rates of teen sex, many kids will take the pledge"?

Tuesday, March 09, 2004

Getting Over Race

Interview with Debra Dickerson, author of The End of Blackness , at The Atlantic. She is so correct about new ways of thinking about problems that I'm sure she'll be ignored:

Dickerson: After I finished my memoir I had all these thoughts sort of roiling around. I'd been thrust into this discourse and was trying to figure things out: I had thought I was a liberal and a Democrat. I had thought this and I had thought that. I became more sophisticated intellectually—better-read and better-educated, but I was also sort of lost, thinking such-and-such doesn't sit well with me but then again that doesn't either. So I went to that neglected shelf of books and read. I read The Souls of Black Folk in its entirety instead of those excerpts that you get in college. I read The Miseducation of the Negro and I read a lot of Frederick Douglass. I read the collected speeches of Martin Luther King Jr., and I read Malcolm X.

Before, I had assumed all of those books were very eloquent denunciations of white racism. But when you actually read those books you find that they spend very little time talking about white people. (James Baldwin, I think focuses on white people more than the others. He was an amazing writer and is very key, but I think he got too caught up in this woe-is-me stuff). But you read Ellison, and Frederick Douglass, and Albert Murray—they were so far ahead of their time. Especially Frederick Douglass; this man was a fugitive slave but he's transracial—he's beyond all this black-white stuff. Their thinking was so much more elevated than what our leaders are putting out there today. I felt so robbed, so lied to, so bamboozled—and not by the people I thought had been bamboozling me. I'd been lied to about my moral and intellectual traditions. I had been led to think that The Miseducation of the Negro was about how white people had miseducated us. But that's not what it's about. Those books are really about communal critique. DuBois and Carter G. Woodson—these guys faced lynchings just for being who they were at the time, but here they were talking not about white people, but about what the standards of our community should be!
Globe Sportswriter Whacked

Nicely delivered take-down of self-important Globe sports reporter Ron Borges at BostonSportsMedia. Borges is a flip-flopper who chooses the facts of his arguement based solely on how much it hurts the Patriots. After providing the evidence of Borges' hypocrisy, BSM delivers a final blow:

I hesitate to even bring all this up, because it is so glaringly obvious to most that Borges is a hate-filled, agenda-driven man who is blinded by his dislike of Patriots organization. Some just tell me that I'm validating him just by bringing more attention to him. Somehow though, I don't think he's going to go away by us ignoring him. So it goes.
Well said.

Monday, March 08, 2004

Iraqi Blogger Responds to a Charge that He is "Anti-Bush"

Iraqi blogger Alaa is concerned that some folks think he is trending against President Bush, but in today's entry he makes his view clear:
Regardless of any election campaign, this man has already established himself in our hearts and minds, and forever. And it is one of my cherished dreams that one day his statue will stand in the middle of Baghdad and that all the people realize finally and unequivocally the friendship that this president of America had for them and the great favor that he has done them.

We sure wish that he be re-elected to complete the great work that he started. The job does not need any new experimenting and trial and error. But of course this is not for us to decide and we have to wait for the decision of the American people.

Amen and Salamm!

Friday, March 05, 2004

The Globe is Anti-Semitic

The Globe Ombudsman mails it in with another weak performance today. Apparently she received quite a few complaining phone calls last week when the paper ran a cartoon that poked fun of Steven Spielberg on the 10th anniversary of his motion picture Schindler's List.

The cartoon in question shows a young Steven Spielberg on his newspaper route being set-upon by his hook-nosed local rabbi who grabs at the boys pants pockets in an attempt to get at the boy's earnings. The caption reads, "In his early years little Steven Spielberg gets Jewed-down by Rabbi Bankem Goldman of the Zion Temple of the Sacred Money Grubbers."

The Globe's Renee Loth answered the criticism by saying "We are concerned that a fair number of readers were disturbed or offended by the cartoon...We never intended to insult Jews or rabbis or even Steven Spielberg by running what we saw as a comic take on a cultural subject prominently in the news...We underestimated people's sensitivities to what appeared to us a broadly satiric commentary. I regret that."

In case you missed that last line, I'll repeat it for you. Loth said, "We underestimated people's sensitivities to what appeared to us a broadly satiric commentary. I regret that." You see, the problem was not with a blatantly anti-semtic cartoon, the problem was with "people's sensitivities". And what is more "broadly satiric" than money grubbing Jews, eh?

The most Chindlund can bring herself to say about this hate-filled cartoon is, "Defenders of the cartoon might argue that some readers are always going to read a cartoon literally and that cartoonists and newspapers shouldn't limit their scope because of that. True enough. But when the literal interpretation is both too easy and offensive, it should serve as a red alert."

The editors get off way too easy here, don't you think. Doesn't picking this cartoon to run say something about how the editors feel about Jews? Doesn't their lack of judgment expose a deeper hatred for Jews that we the readers should know about? Why doesn't Chinlund suggest someone resign?....fat chance.

(By the way, I took some poetic license in the above post. For a more accurate reading of what actually happened at the Boston Globe, please replace the words Jew with Catholic, Spielberg with Gibson, Rabbi with Nun, and Rabbi Bankem Goldman of the Zion Temple of the Sacred Money Grubbers with Sister Dolorosa Excruciata of the Little Sisters of the Holy Agony)

Thursday, March 04, 2004

Rumor Central: UPDATE

Boston Dirt Dogs (the Matt Drudge of Boston baseball) is reporting a rumor that John Henry Williams, controversial son of the the great Ted Williams, is near death as a result of leukemia. I have no idea if it is true, but I'm passing it along as a rumor only...
The Passion of the Suburban Catholic

The Pharisees and Sadducees at the Boston Globe are already building the crosses they will need to hang high Boston's suburban Catholics. It seems that many healthy and vibrant parishes located in the suburbs are balking at committing suicide in the name of political correctness and, well, if they don't take the poison, it looks like the Globe will stick the lance into the parishes' sides to finish the job themselves.

As most Boston Catholics know, decades long shifts in demographics have left more empty pews in Boston proper and many crowded churches in the 'burbs. At a time of tight finances, fewer priests, and an aging infrastructure, it would seem reasonable to close those parishes with the fewest parishoners, the most hopeless budgets, and the worst physical plants. But the Globe is here to police the process to make sure the big, bad suburbanites don't make any common-sense decsions.

The Globe writes: "In several areas, including Brockton, Charlestown, Milton, Winchester, and the Canton-Sharon-Stoughton area, clusters are recommending that the archdiocese consider closing the parishes with concentrations of poor people, ethnic minorities, or foreign-born residents, again posing a challenge to O'Malley's pledge to protect those populations. In most cases, these parishes also are the weakest or smallest. For example, in Newton, the cluster is expected to recommend the closure of St. Philip Neri, one of the smallest parishes in that city but also the headquarters of the archdiocese's Korean community."

Somehow I doubt that any of these clusters have written O'Malley to say that he should close "parishes with concentrations of poor people, ethnic minorities, or foreign-born residents". More likely, these clusters of parishes have determined that based on the facts and figures provided by reality, poorly attended and bankrupt parishes should be the ones to close, not the well-attended, fiscally sound parishes.

But let's not allow common sense to get in the way of the Boston Globe's political agenda. When the closings come, the Boston Globe will DEMAND some wealthy suburban blood be spilled. No matter how successful these parishes might be, the Globe's obsessive need for quota-based "fairness" will force O'Malley, Pilate-like, to destroy suburban parishes in exchange for a few inches of good ink.

Wednesday, March 03, 2004

I Just Gave $20 to Re-Elect Bush

Why am I donating to re-elect George Bush? Well, I agree with him on the issues and I think Kerry is a phony:

Bush believes that unyielding strength is the best way to deal with our enemies. Kerry flip flops depending on the day.

Bush has a plan to improve the immigration chaos, Kerry does not.

Bush opposes partial birth abortion, Kerry favors this horrific procedure.

Bush has an opinion on gay marriage similar to mine, Kerry changes his mind depending on the audience.

Bush puts more trust in free trade than Kerry does.

Bush is more likely to take the side of the taxpayer against those who want my tax money.

Bush supports our military, Kerry has tried to cancel many important defense programs.

I could go on, but these tend to get to the heart of the matter. I support the candidates who generally match my believes and priorities...then I give them money Not the most interesting Blog posting ever, but it is twenty dollars well spent.