Attribution Is Key

(Thanks to The Smirking Chimp—currently in the midst of its summer fundraiser—for greenlighting this post.)

Recently, a friend of mine was upset over an e-mail forward she’d received, allegedly authored by “…a housewife from New Jersey and sounds like it!” I will spare readers from the bulk of this happy horseshit, but here is a flavor of it.

‘Are we fighting a war on terror or aren’t we? Was it or was it not started by Islamic people who brought it to our shores on September 11, 2001?

Were people from all over the world, mostly Americans, not brutally murdered that day, in downtown Manhattan, across the Potomac from our nation’s capitol and in a field in Pennsylvania?

Did nearly three thousand men, women and children die a horrible, burning or crushing death that day, or didn’t they?

And I’m supposed to care that a copy of the Koran was ‘desecrated’ when an overworked American soldier kicked it or got it wet?…Well, I don’t. I don’t care at all.

Often when assaulted with this brand of idiotic indignation, I oftne flash to angry. You don’t need to remind me about September Eleventh. I walked home that day from downtown Washington, D.C. My Dad was a mile from the Pentagon and felt the conference room walls shake. I had people in NYC who indeed were running for their lives that day. Don’t get indignant with me about September Eleventh. Fuckpig. It happened to us all. You don’t own it and in fact your people have managed to convert it into the biggest mistake in the world. So go sit on a fire plug.

I didn’t need all of that, though. I just needed four minutes of googling, which led me to discover that the words were not authored by a pissed-off New Jersey housewife, nor by Pam Foster of Atlanta, as some others of these forwards have claimed. It was, in fact, written by “conservative” “columnist” Doug Patton of the Web site gopusa, published in June 2005.

This raises questions about the e-mail as it was forwarded. If the source believed so strongly in the words contained therein, then why for did he change its attribution? Was it because they believed it packs more punch from an anonymous housewife or a gold star mom than from a right-wang propagandist? If the words are worth more from one source than another, then don’t these words lose substantial credibility when we find out who actually wrote them?

Unsolicited advice from me to you: When your Auntie Pear-Shaped Hickey sends you one of these goddamn things, immediately visit snopes.com for debunking. If in the rare instance that snopes doesn’t offer much, Google it and see if you can figure out who actually wrote it. The author is * never * the anecdotal New Jersey housewife. Attribution is key. If you can show that the attribution is wrong, you’re halfway to making the sender look like a buffoon.

Roni Deutch Makes My Head Hurt

Thom Hartmann had Roni Deutch on the air and proceeded to tear her a new orafice. She was defending McCain’s tax policy versus Obama’s. And it is solidly clear that these people cannot get a few essential logics into their skulls.

  1. Things are bad.
  2. Republigoats have had most of the power now for about 30 years and certainly for nearly the last decade.
  3. It might perhaps be time to try things our way for awhile.
  4. Barack Obama is not the President yet. The person who has been President is George W. Bush, who has drastically lowered taxes on the wealthy and who has tolerated insane trade practices that do nothing to protect American markets. Again, I emphasize. Barack Obama is not the President yet. Deutch does not seem to know this.

Go ahead and listen. But keep some Advil handy.

Electricity Grows On Trees

One can give John McCain style points for his generous offer of $300 million in tax dollars as a reward to the inventor of a super-duper car battery. But it is what it smacks of. It is a gimmick.

It is a gimmick that for one assumes that electricity grows on trees. The electric car is cleaner than what we have, but it is by no means a one-two punch versus our dependence on foreign oil. Electricity comes from somewhere, often generated with coal, which can lead to other issues, you know, such as horrific deaths of miners when mine operators in this deregulation-mad country get greedy and reckless. (See “Sago.”)

It is a gimmick because this is a problem that will require years and years from which to dig out. There is no one-two punch, there is no single technology that will rescue. This will require a complicated array of solutions and new technologies, a sophisticated amalgam that will make the layman’s brain boggle. It will be good for America because it will recreate industry here. Necessity will once again be the mother of invention.

If only there were a presidential candidate who understood that and who had a plan.

Wait. Look! Up in the sky!…

Obama will invest $150 billion over 10 years to advance the next generation of biofuels and fuel infrastructure, accelerate the commercialization of plug-in hybrids, promote development of commercial-scale renewable energy, invest in low-emissions coal plants, and begin the transition to a new digital electricity grid. A principal focus of this fund will be devoted to ensuring that technologies that are developed in the U.S. are rapidly commercialized in the U.S. and deployed around the globe.

You may go look at the energy plan of the next President of the United States here.

Here, wait. Dr. Maddow tells it better:

By the way. Isn’t it funny when Republigoats inadvertently tell the truth? Take McCain Advisor Charlie Black, for instance.

On national security McCain wins. We saw how that might play out early in the campaign, when one good scare, one timely reminder of the chaos lurking in the world, probably saved McCain in New Hampshire, a state he had to win to save his candidacy—this according to McCain’s chief strategist, Charlie Black. The assassination of Benazir Bhutto in December was an “unfortunate event,” says Black. “But his knowledge and ability to talk about it reemphasized that this is the guy who’s ready to be Commander-in-Chief. And it helped us.” As would, Black concedes with startling candor after we raise the issue, another terrorist attack on U.S. soil. “Certainly it would be a big advantage to him,” says Black.

It is events such as these that snatches Mad Mike Malloy’s identification of these people as “ghouls and flesheaters” from the beyond of moonbat ranting to a reasonable and accurate characterization. These ghouls, it’s been shown time and again, are only too happy to ride hard the nexus of politics and terror. Seldom, though, do they actually talk about it.

bababooey

I am pleased to know that one of my oldest friends evar may actually be reading KIAV. She left a comment here and referred of course to Mr. Obama’s “57-state” slip, which the most coarse in our electorate have tried to stretch to include in the “he’s a MUSLIM!” smear. He’s not a Muslim, and he’s not an idiot, either. He was exhausted and transposed a digit holder with another that started in “F.” However, after all the years of ribbing Dan Quayle for “potatoe,” of which this amateur wonk has seen first-hand and has never approved—seriously—I reckon the Next President of the Untied States can take a ribbing for that.

So, thanks, Annie. I’m glad you’re reading.

(I have met Dan Quayle twice. The second time I met him was at a fundraiser I was covering for the newspaper I werked for in sunny North Carolina. As was my usual technique, I inserted myself into the gaggle and began writing in my little notebook. That’s when an asshole reporter next to me decided to ask Mr. Quayle if he could spell THAT WORD. You are for the first and last time in your small journalistic career faced with questioning the Former Vise Prezidente of the Untied States, and this is what you ask him? Believe me you, I am no fan of Quayle. Poking at him for the “potatoe” moment is the kind of gotcha politics that does little else but ruin good men and elect for life bad ones.)

I wanted to point out an excellent opinion column in today’s The Washington Post by David Ignatius, Failing Airlines, Failing Government. Mr. Ignatius points out that the spiraling state of our airlines is the result of years of foolish deregulation that should be reversed should we decide we’d like our airlines to stop nickel-and-diming us and treating us like livestock when we fly. I would go and have gone a step further. The health of a nation’s transportation infrastructure strongly reflects the health of the nation. Or, you could say that a healthy transportation infrastructure is the backbone of a healthy nation. I’m not sure which it is. Regardless. Have you flown lately? We are screwed. It’s a nice read, go see.

Rudy Can Fail

Just in case anyone needed a reminder, THIS is what Rudy Giuliani’s run for the presidency looked like:

Remember. Rudy was in the start considered to be as inevitable as was Tweety Monster for the Democrats. Then Bernie Kerik was indicted on 16 counts. And rumors swirled that he had used city resources to bone his mistress. So he retreated to Florida and embarked on the least successful presidential bid since some genius stuffed Dukakis into a tank cab.

So yesterday, this idiot is on the TV machine spouting the Republigoat line on the “war” on “terror.” He says my man Obama has a “Sept. 10 mentality” regarding the problem. He weirdly criticized the U.S.’ failure to react to the USS Cole incident—which happened on The Current President’s watch, by the way—and the reaction to the 1993 WTC bombing (which netted four actual CONVICTIONS).

Why, when his “noun-verb-9/11” approach failed to net the invevitable Rudy his nomination, why are they dragging this asshole out now to be a surrogate?

In Which Mike Huckaboo Says Something Smart

Tokyo? Tokyo? What the hell is he doing in Tokyo?

“Republicans will make a fundamental if not fatal mistake if they seek to win the election by demonizing Barack Obama,” Huckabee told reporters in Tokyo, according to a report by Agence France-Presse.

He doesn’t know his own party very well, do he? McCain has been and will continue to attempt to Obama-Sock the Democratic nominee. I say bring it on. More whispers about his funny name, please. More comments about his refusal to wear a lapel pin, more smack about his hot hot wife. Bring it on. Because I am convinced that, at this point, the American voter is sick to death of it and will prefer the guy who rises above it and tells the truth.

Brainless, Careless Fear-Mongerers

On Oct. 15, 1962, United States reconnaissance photos revealed missile bases being constructed 90 miles off the nation’s southernmost tip, in Cuba. Two weeks later, President Kennedy and UN Sectretary-General Thant reached an agreement with the USSR to dismantle. But the spectre of enemy missiles in our own neighborhood has peppered the American conciousness ever since.

Which is why it is so utterly stunning that the Current Vice President and all kinds of other right-wing idiots have been so utterly careless as to continue repeating the lie about China drilling off of our coast via Cuba. The lie has been so often repeated that Sen. Mel Martinez, a Republigoat from Florida, had to take to the Senate floor to debunk it. No matter what party Martinez is with, he still has to represent his folks, many of whom might just freak out about commies conducting operations in and around the Florida. Even the Dickster had to recant, so it must have been one hell of a lie. And yet. As recently as yesterday, it was repeated by Republigoat henchwoman Mary Matalin.

These people should no longer be allowed on television, let alone in our government.

Hell For E.D. Hill

E.D. Hill of Fox “News” had to issue an apology and faces demotion, perhaps for her weird characterization of a loving gesture between the Obamas as a “terrorist fist jab” during a broadcast of her brilliant television program, “America’s Pulse.” There is great irony in the name of this broadcast because it is apparent that, if Fox “News” is taking America’s pulse, it is using its thumb. America is tired of all the mongering.

What I do know is that Ms. Hill has just cemented the fate of her eternal soul. Upon her death, her soul will be immediately boxed and shipped miles below to the center of the Earth, where she will be unboxed and placed on the floor in Belial’s apartment, where she will serve the rest of her days as his end table. These people, these gracious, wonderful people whom Hill accused of gesturing as terrorists, these people have children, Ms. Hill. They are a family, one whose integrity and goodness I would stack against yours or that of any of your colleagues at Fox “News” any goddamned day of the week. And if you’d stop for a second and analyze your statement of June 6, you’d see the ugly spectre of racism in your assertion and you’d see the Rovian effort of yours to take one of the cutest things I’ve seen on the television in a long time into something outright sinister.

Dress your soul in short sleeves, E.D. Hill. Where it is going, it will be very, very hot. Sorry about your show. Dummy.

Yep.

Think Progress notes a report in Spiegel Online today that, on the eve of The Current President’s visit to Germany, a number of people in the government are eschewing diplomatic protocol and issuing pretty harsh criticism. I don’t know enough about German politics to guage the biases of these quotes. But the report seems pretty historic. It does indicate that Obama will be well-served by the Bush albatross that makes its home ’round John McWeirdsmile’s neck.