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All content © 2002-2005 Anne Zook

April 15, 2005
Old News

Things I meant to comment on when they happened.

Good grief. Like nuclear waste dumps aren't dangerous enough, now we have to worry about employees making up stuff in the records?

Ghost voters in Zimbabwe? I have to say, I really don't understand what's going through Mugabe's head but I suspect he's lost his mind. I've been puzzling over this ever since I first heard about the food aid moratorium a few months ago.

Is No One Accountable? Rumsfeld gets sued over torturing prisoners. Maybe this will get the Administration's attention.

In the meantime, I'm pondering Washington D.C. for a number of reasons. More on that later.

And preparing for Doors Open Denver because I'm volunteering at The Oxford Hotel tomorrow morning.

Posted by AnneZook at 04:03 PM | Comments (0)
April 14, 2005
Cancer, Education, and Old Age

Speaking of bad government, how about Louisiana's "Cancer Alley"?

Louisiana leads the nation in cancer deaths and cancer mortality among blacks in these Delta towns far outpaces that of whites in the state. Louisiana ranks fourth in heart disease and the Cancer Alley parishes score the highest rate of heart disease in the state. Both heart disease and stroke have been linked to air pollution. Louisiana is also at or near the top of the list in birth defects, respiratory diseases and learning disabilities. Only Texas, a state five times its size, generates more hazardous waste and toxic chemicals.

They had one man empowered to help them stand up to Big Bidness and the oil companies, but he was told to retire or be fired.

Education matters, and that includes Higher Education. Our universities and colleges are not "products" to be "regulated by the WTO and I'm more than a little tired of the Bush Administration's perception that everything we have should be for sale. Jonathan Dresner has the story.

And, while I'm being annoyed, let me point out that there's a huge gap between a company becoming mind-bogglingly successful and a company being evil. Starbucks is not evil.

Also, no one in my family is in a nursing home and after reading Maureen's depressing experience, no one ever will be.

Posted by AnneZook at 02:09 PM | Comments (0)
April 13, 2005
While I Was Working

Headlines from someone on hold for most of the morning....

Someone needs to ask Joel Engel not to help "classical liberals" if he's working under the assumption that people who call themselves "liberal" believe stuff like this:

Decrying the American "religious right" for advocating a "culture of life" while simultaneously praising the neck-slicing Islamofascists is many things (start with pathetic), but it is not liberal.

I'm just saying. If you want to be taken seriously, don't draw your criticism of "liberals" from the Rightwingnut talking points. The only people happy about middle-east terrorism are the ones in the Bush Administration who needed the violence to help justify their elective war.

Also, in the "don't make me laugh" category:

Calling the then-recently departed Yasser Arafat a "wily" and "enigmatic" "statesman", as the New York Times did, is many things (nauseatingly PC, for one), but it is not liberal.

Okay, this is the New York Times, Joel. Again, I beg you, stop believing what you're told by the Right. The mainstream media is not a hotbed of liberal bias, okay? The NYT is not, does not pretend to be, and never wanted to be "liberal." It is a newspaper. It wants to be influential and controversial so it will sell copies and make money.

As for the rest of your points, they're a similar mix of the irrelevant and the inaccurate. When you take one wingnut's words and ascribe them to "liberals" regardless of whether that person considers themselves a liberal, when you say things that just aren't true, and when you cite events out of context, well, you fail to sway me.

Moving on, we consider whether or not the threatened "nuclear option" in Congress will hurt the press. Quite frankly, I think E&P is reaching. There's a difference between "parliamentary procedure" sort of matters and freedom of the press.

I don't remember seeing this covered in the USofA press, but I'll admit I've been pretty busy this week. It's possible that 300,000 Iraqis destroying effigies of Bush and Blair in Firdos Square was front-page news and I just failed to see the story. That must be it.

Was John Bolton instrumental in shutting down Florida's constitutional vote-counting process in '00 or just a lackey, sent to do a job? I'd say that since he was rewarded with a nomination to be our U.N. Ambassador, he was probably a key player.

The so-called "Patriot Act" is under attack from all sides and that's as it should be.

I'm sure by now you've all seen the story about how videos of arrests at the Republican convention show that the police were lying under oath about what happened. I find this...most disturbing than you might expect. I was raised to trust the police and every time I read stories about police corruption of any kind, it upsets me. (Normally, at this point, I'd go off on a tangent about how the police forces in this country are underfunded, underpaid, and undersupported, but I'm short on time at the moment, so just assume I did.)

And, finally, just to be annoying, what about that Blog of the Year thing, anyhow? I didn't bother to Google it, no, I still don't care that much, but ITT is a regular read for me, so I was interested in their explanation that it was the sloppy, biased, and unproven accusations against Dan Rather that garnered them the award. Not to mention the information that it was a concerted effort on the part of "conservative" bloggers to oust Rather. So. I guess we know how much we care about that now, right?

But read the article, because it quickly leaves that boring topic and moves on to more interesting material.

I think we need to worry about these "gotcha" campaigns. Finding and revealing authentic matters of concern is one thing but I've been appalled by how quickly the world o'blog has started transforming itself into a mob. All some people seem to need today is a whiff of an excuse to jump on someone. Granted, in this case it was rightwing nutjobs doing the jumping, but still.

On the one hand, I'm a bit disgusted by the number of people who won't pay for a fax or a phone call to their representatives in Washington but who will sign on to a mass-e-mail campaign. If you don't care enough about an issue to address a postcard, how much do you really care?

On the other hand, maybe it's time WeThePeepul started speaking up about every, single issue until we regain the attention of those in Washington, and maybe it's better to do it via e-mail so we don't kill an entire forest in the process.

I just don't know yet, I need to think about it more.

Posted by AnneZook at 10:26 AM | Comments (0)
April 12, 2005
Death And Destruction

War is hell. That's become such a cliché that everyone just nods and moves on.

Well, thanks to the ingenious approach of the USofA, war may soon be a lot less of a hell for some soldiers. Namely, the ever-increasing number who will be able to dole out death among anonymous targets via landminds detonated from a safe, sanitary distance.

And, speaking of targets, it looks like the Wingnut Right has chosen their next target in the war on terrorism. Yep, it's the USofA judiciary.

Believe it or not, that's really all I have time for today.

Posted by AnneZook at 03:26 PM | Comments (0)