Well, here’s a fine howdy-do: Rick Warren, pastor of the mother of all mega-churches, has been tapped to channel Jesus conduct a seance deliver the invocation at Barack Obama’s inauguration. Because Warren is, you know, a “moderate.”
…in 2004 Warren declared that marriage, reproductive choice, and stem cell research were “non-negotiable” issues for Christian voters and has admitted that the main difference between himself and James Dobson is a matter of tone. He criticized Obama’s answers at the Faith Forum he hosted before the election and vowed to continue to pressure him to change his views on the issue of reproductive choice. He came out strongly in support of Prop 8, saying “there is no need to change the universal, historical definition of marriage to appease 2 percent of our population … Read more
In this season’s eighth episode, Boston Legal – the relentlessly liberal ABC dramedy starring William Shatner and James Spader – lobbed an absolute bomb at those of us on the pro-choice side of the Roe v. Wade question. The bunker-buster was posed, predictably enough, by Crane Poole & Schmitt’s resident conservative, the gleefully Republican Denny Crane, portrayed by Shatner. BL fans know Crane to be positively Cheney-esque in his politics (although he did finally cross the aisle to vote for Obama because even he couldn’t stomach four more years like the last eight), and he routinely plays the straw man for the passionate liberalism of Spader’s litigator par excellence, Alan Shore.
This time, though, Crane (who’s battling through the early stages of Alzheimer’s) breaks through to a moment of pristine, Emmy-worthy clarity. Read more
Finally, FINALLY we’re starting to treat the RIAA like an organized crime syndicate. Check the latest on a RICO class-action in Missouri, via Slashdot:
“In Atlantic Recording v. Raleigh, an RIAA case pending in St. Louis, Missouri, the defendant has asserted detailed counterclaims against the RIAA for federal RICO violations, fraud, violation of the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, prima facie tort, trespass, and conspiracy. The claims focus on the RIAA’s ‘driftnet’ tactic of suing innocent people, and of demanding extortionate settlements. The RICO ‘predicate acts’ alleged in the 42-page pleading (PDF) are extortion, mail fraud, and wire fraud.
This is a wonderful approach. Read more
Trusting is one thing I don’t know
When it comes to the campaigning men
But I’ll meet you at the election
When I vote for the hope of this land
– Sean Kelly
You may have noticed, if you’ve been paying attention, that the music industry has gone to hell of late. It isn’t that nobody is making good music anymore – on the contrary, there are legions of fantastic bands and artists out there. It’s just that the best ones rarely get played on the radio; the recording industry cranks out nothing but imitation, prefabricated product – the musical equivalent of Cheez-Whiz (Now With Zero Intellectual Calories!); the RIAA – the body that’s allegedly working on behalf of artists – never misses a chance to kneecap young, developing musicians; and if an artist is making a living, it’s probably at a day job and not with his or her music. Read more
Joe Brewer and George Lakoff have published a new analysis that looks at the importance of “cognitive policy” – the process of constructing the assumptions that underlie actual material policy decisions.
Conservative cognitive policy over many years has resulted in the following ideas being promulgated to the public:
- Successful wealthy people merit their success. Those who are not successful and wealthy donâ€™t deserve to be. Read more
I don’t know what kind of musical talent lies in the McCain and Romney camps, but right now Obama is whomping the bejeezus out of Hillary’s girl Celine.
Something big happened a few nights ago in Iowa. Barack Obama began the evening as one of the top two contenders for the Democratic nomination and by the time people went to bed he was John F. Kennedy.
This might sound like hyperbole – and to be sure, the race is far from won – but if the results we saw in the Hawkeye State last Thursday are replicated in New Hampshire and beyond, then what we are seeing may be a defining shift in American politics and culture. The key factor is the emergence of the 75-100 million strong Millennial Generation as a political force. Let’s look at some of the evidence.
The Young Voter PAC’s roundup provides ample data for consideration. Read more
Neocon extraordinaire Norman Podhoretz, who currently works as Rudy Giuliani’s foreign policy advisor, is engaging in some wild speculation today regarding the new National Intelligence Estimate report on Iran’s nuclear capabilities. Writing at Commentary Magazine, he suggests that the US intelligence community may be gaming its analysis on Iran to undercut Bush’s march to war.
But I entertain an even darker suspicion. It is that the intelligence community, which has for some years now been leaking material calculated to undermine George W. Bush, is doing it again. Read more
Well, here’s a fine howdy-do first thing this morning: an absolutely breathtaking bit of misdirection and pro-monopolist hackery masquerading as a good-faith critique of Bill Moyers.
Moyers’ point seems to be that the opposite of more consolidation is the existence of more stations like this one in Chicago.This is absolutely false and Mr. Moyers should know it.
The opposite of more consolidation is, in fact, more ownership by smaller owners who have exactly the same profit motivation as the larger owners. More of the same, in other words. With a different company name on the letterhead.
Now I know what you’re thinking: Radio companies don’t own the airwaves, we Americans do. And those stations are licensed to serve “in the public interest.” But what could be more in the public interest than content which is interesting to the public? And in Chicago there are 32 examples of this ranked higher than the poster child Moyers chose.
The author is Mark Ramsey, president of Mercury Radio Research, and once you sift through a lot of self-serving rhetoric designed to make him seem more fair-minded on the subject than I suspect he really is, there are a couple of core assertions that we’re expected to accept as wisdom: Read more
In my most recent post, one commenter repeatedly insisted that I offer a solution or an alternative for the problems I was pointing to. As I noted there, I never suggested that there was a problem, and even if there were, it’s hardly my job to be proposing a lot of solutions that aren’t going to be acted on. If you believe there’s the slightest plausibility of change wafting in the wind, you haven’t taken a good look at the likely presidential contenders in your two major parties.
However, for the sake of argument, let’s pretend that I think America’s current condition constitutes a “problem” and that I’m tasked with offering a solution. I would begin with one critical observation about your system of governance: The problem with democracy in America is that too many people are allowed to participate. Read more
Howdy, folks, and welcome to Saturday Video Roundup, where today our guests tackle the tricky issue of education and politics. Up first, one of our heroes offers some thoughts on education in our ownership society.
In America, the Republicans are seen as the party of money and wealth. This perception is certainly accurate in one sense – the GOP is the favored party of the wealthy elite. Unfortunately, the party is also supported in large numbers by those who have no wealth, and thanks to the policies of the Republican party, no hope of ever attaining any. But they continue to support the party for reasons that seem irrational to us. Why?
In a nutshell, I want to argue here that they do so because the GOP has, through a long-term and exceptionally effective messaging campaign, drawn around itself the ideology of hope. Forgive a brief over-generalization, but they’re the party that preaches wealth and that tells people they can join the club (never mind that the message is a lie, given our current economic policy structure). In the popular frame, the Republicans are often seen as being about getting and having money while the Democrats are about taking your hard-earned money and giving it to people who didn’t earn it. Read more