Sunday, December 31, 2006

Google going???

Michael Arrington at TechCrunch said what a lot of us are thinking. About Google. Instapundit has similar thoughts, too.

Above is a good example why Google is losing their reputation. (Click on image to enlarge and see the sponsored links to the right.)
Now try the same search at Yahoo and you won't find pornograpy or sex aid sites. That is because Yahoo insists that such sites meet editor approval, according to SearchEngineWatch.
Google used to have standards.
Now Google has competition as well.

Friday, December 29, 2006


A new Ipso-AP poll has been released just in time for those year-end stories.

It's the Celebrity Ranking Poll Link

It is worth reading if only because it is reported so widely that president Bush topped the list for biggest villain of the year with 25%. He's was the first name on the list of 32 read to those interviewed.

The runner ups are worth looking at.
The second biggest villain was Don't Know/Not Saying at 20%.
Don't know/Not Saying Other also came in third with 15%.
So, overall, Don't Know/Not Saying/Other was the overall winner at 35%.

Biggest Hero of the Year
The DK/NS (27%) and OTHER (25%) also beat out all contenders for the biggest hero of the year as well. (Although at 13% Bush headed the list and beat out both Clintons at 1% each and Jesus Christ at 3%. Jesus tied with Barack Obama.)

By the time they got to Question #3 about the Best Role Model Celebrity of the Year and the Question #4 Worst Role Model Celebrity of the Year, respondents apparently cut off the pollsters because the Role Model questioners didn't read 7 names for Best category and didn't read 5 names for the Worst category. We can only guess that respondents at that point got very tired, probably figuring they'd been conned into responding to a bogus, politically- motivated poll.

The poll interviewed 1,044 adults, some 77% (779) of them registered to vote. They represent 60% Democrat/Independent and 27% Republican, although at this point I do not know why any Republican would respond to a media poll. As for religious, 21% identify themselves as None.

IPSO is a French firm with HQ in Paris.
AP is owned by member newspapers and their loyalities are in Paris and Iran.

Thursday, December 28, 2006

Look for the Union Label

When I wrote about the sale of the Minneapolis Star-News, I thought it looked odd that Dutch-owned Editor & Publisher mentioned union contracts more than once. A new story today infers that McClatchy sold it off because it was union in "With 'Strib' Gone, McClatchy Sheds Another Union Paper -- Coincidence?"

Seems the Star-News was the next to the last newspapers McClatchy-purchased Knight-Ridder paper, that had union newsrooms. (The contracts will, of course, be honored. It was part of the negotiations.) The one former paper with a Guild newsroom that McClatchy kept was the Lexington (Ky.) Herald-Leader.

Of course, selling such papers might be an issue of (shhhhh) p r o f i t a b i l i t y. As in, union papers are more (shhhh) c o s t l y to produce and union troubles are (shhhhh) a n n o y i n g and (shhhhh) t h u g g i s h. (Just ask the folks who bought the Philadelphia papers from McClatchy.)

But realism (or honesty) has never been a watchword for union organizations.

It is my contention, and I have written about it, that newspaper unions and newspapers dependence upon them is another factor in their liberal-leftwing politics. It is also my contention that in the 1960s the unions helped drive other newspapers out of business with long and costly strikes so that the public was left with only liberal-leftwing papers in major cities. (Think Los Angeles Herald-Examiner.)

And as they are trying to do in Toledo.

The sky is falling (or maybe not)

The Globe & Mail, Canada's lunatic leftwing newspaper - (think U.K.'s Guardian as opposed to the Independent) - has daily polls to test their readers susceptibility to their various campaigns.

They must be gnashing their teeth after a prominent story, "Giant ice shelf snaps free from Canada's Arctic," and their poll question hasn't the desired effect.

Question: If the unusual weather patterns observed in much of Canada this fall and winter are a byproduct of global warming, do you believe the change is caused mainly by natural events or human activity?

Natural events (49%) 13598 votes
Human activity (51%) 13911 votes

Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Thanks, Santa

The guys at Power Line have long maintained that the Minneapolis Star Tribune, their home newspaper is one of the worst in the country. It's a view shared by many of us who have visited the newspaper.

Today that view was shared by the marketplace and Goldman Sachs.
"While McClatchy will "generate a tax benefit of about $160 million," Goldman observes, it is also taking a hit on the sale price, having paid $1.2 billion for the paper in 1998, now selling it for $530 million. "The substantial loss on the sale is a vivid reminder of the industry's declining fortunes ove the last several years," Goldman declared.
And THAT quote was found at Editor & Publisher, the leftwing rah, rah, rah cheerleaders for the industry that are helping lead American newspapers off the cliff into la la land with Greg Mitchell, the frequent-flashbacks-to-Vietnam prone editor.

[For the record, note that Editor & Publisher, whose masthead says they are "America's Oldest Journal Covering the Newspaper Industry" is Dutch owned.]

Not surprisingly, another article at the Editor & Publisher site, quoted Nick Coleman, "a metropolitan columnist for the paper."
"It was like, who? Everyone knows the whole industry is in play and that just about anything could happen, but nobody thought we could get sold. There’s a real sense of betrayal ...“At a fire sale,” he said, “people get discounted, so we’re very concerned, worried and anxious.” But he added, “maybe it takes someone from outside the newspaper business to see the way forward.”
Nick Coleman is one of the most egregious examples of a political hack with total unsuitability for the newsroom. A some-time host at Air America, he is, simply, a hack for the Democrat party, a tradition he shared with his father who was a Democrat party big shot in the state. The Power Line guys systematically took him apart a dozen times for his columns.

The power of the union at the newspaper was another leftward factor that made the newspaper so bad. It was acknowledged by E&P staff when they stated that union contracts will remain in place no less than two different times in the writeup of the sale.

But for the rest of us it's a belated Christmas present. That is, if you believe the newspaper will change. The day they fire Nick Coleman, you can believe the fairy tale. Until then, the likelihood is that the private equity firm is just there to prop up one of the worst newspapers in the country.

See Captain's Quarters entry and Power Line's take. Fraters Libertas isn't optimistic about the equity firm that bought the paper.

Frankly, I am basing my pessimism on the fact that the equity group "was formed following the separation of most of its partners from the former DLJ Merchant Banking Partners unit of Credit Suisse First Boston in July, 2005."

Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Darfur, the UN and Amnesty Int'l

You mean Clinton and the United Nations are not perfect?????!!!! Who would have guessed?

Well, maybe 800,000 Rwandans. And maybe those refugees in Darfur still waiting for the U.N. to do something -- anything -- to help them.

One of the real problems, however, is that Amnesty International is so politicized** that they don't have any crediblity either, even when they urge Canada to do something about Darfur. The shame is, that the people in Darfur need intervention desperately. It is a pity that Amnesty Int'l squandered their reputation and any chance they had of being listened to by any rational person.

**This has been called "Moynihan's Law" after the late U.S. Senator and former Ambassador to the United Nations, Daniel Patrick Moynihan, who is said to have commented that, the number of complaints about a nation's violation of human rights is inversely proportional to their actual violation of human rights.

Reality Check

Finally! A reality check for the New York Times reporters who portray U.S. intelligence agencies everyone in the U.S. government as jack booted thugs.

Sunday, December 24, 2006

Blogs for the MSM (pre-selected)

While the media derides bloggers, they're very, very busy creating and filtering blogs they can quote. And to help them, Reuters has just invested heavily in Pluck Corporation with their "BlogBurst capabilities".

What's that, you ask?

Well, first there is the "Editorial team: Our in-house editors manage the recruitment, filtering and maintenance of high-quality focused blogs." who will "Discover great blogs with sophisticated search and browsing tools. Pick a blog knowing it has been reviewed by our Editorial staff." [Emphasis mine.]

Best of all, they will "Leverage posts to show up as long-life content for evergreen topics." Whatever the hell that means. (The Washington Post, we are told, uses Environment blogs for their site, and leverages advertising and sponsorship opportunities around environmentally friendly products for Your Life Is Green.)

In other words, they find and/or create and pay pre-selected blogs for the media. And, trust me -- as the girl says in the Nutrisystem ad -- they will, miraculously, agree with the MSM opinion.

Saturday, December 23, 2006

Gosh, what a surprise

Daily Mail (UK) headline: "Blackmail fear after Russia doubles the price of its gas"

FACT: Moscow forced Georgia to accept a doubling of gas prices and has warned Turkey not to help Georgia.

REALITY: No one really gives a darn about Georgia, especially in the EU (pronounced EWWWWW)

FEAR: The EU (pronounced EWWWWW) currently gets 25% of their gas supplies from Russia and Russia is taking over gas distribution as well. And then there's:
Similar price rise demand led to massive cuts in Russian supplies to Ukraine in January.
This also reduced the amount of Russian gas reaching Europe, prompting some European leaders to question the continent's reliance on Russia as its major supplier.
Did anyone expect otherwise? Of course they did. Socialists always think they are infallible. It comes from a combination of hubris and ignorance, with the latter the reason why they are Socialists to begin with.

Of course, the useful idiots among them will argue for even closer ties to Russia, the theory being that friendship will prevail over economic interests. It's more succinctly put by the mafia as "honor among thieves" because it takes some collusion to even make the relationship acceptable in the first place. And while it never worked for the Mafia either, Socialists are, at heart, suckers for invented history and self-delusion. Besides, let's be honest. They are thieves who hope to get theirs and then emigrate when things get really bad.

But that's the EU (pronounced EWWWWW) for you. And those Socialists are Howard Dean's friends.

Friday, December 22, 2006

WARNING - Viewing this is bad for their egos

Celebrities then and now from WNBC. [Warning: Do not drink liquids while viewing.]

British Spy Arrested

A UK soldier has been arrested on has appeared in court accused of passing secrets to Iran.

Daniel James was an interpreter for NATO commander in Afghanistan General David Richards.
As an interpreter for the British general who commands some 30,000 NATO troops in Afghanistan, James would be privy to highly sensitive military and political information.

The charges are likely to embarrass Richards, the first British general to command a large force of U.S. troops since World War Two. Richards has been commander of NATO troops in Afghanistan since July 31 this year when the alliance assumed responsibility for peacekeeping across the whole of the country
James "is the first person to be charged with spying under Britain's Official Secrets Act since an MI5 officer was jailed for 23 years in 1984 for passing secrets to the Soviet Union."

The Mirror reported that James was a former salsa dancing teacher and nightclub owner. That could explain a lot.


Trust Canada's Globe & Mail to run this headline: Kremlin scores another victory with Sakhalin energy deal as if the thuggish tactics Putin used to wrest control of Sakhalin from investors was a triumph of sorts. Maybe it was if you consider the takeover of AO Yukos Oil Co by the Kremlin a similar success story.

This is another blow to the delusion of the EU that they would be partners with Russia in any number of projects. Just as no legitimate business would willingly partner with the mafia, the EU is either corrupt to the point of collusion or desperate to the point of indifference in making Russia the primary source of oil and gasoline for the EU. I am guessing it's the former.

But it's wonderful to note that the ecological problems are now solved with the change in ownership. Tass says so.

Sandy Berger

Thanks to PajamasMedia, you can download the Inspector General’s report on Sandy Berger's destruction of classified documents. Here

PajamasMedia is inviting everyone to review the document with them. It's a case of many minds working to discover the facts the MSM folks are ignoring.
We are confident that by releasing this document in this manner we can call upon the networked intelligence of the Web to find within these pages not only more questions, but the beginnings of the answer to the central mystery of this entire incident: “Who was Berger looking to protect from the 9/11 Commission’s inquiry? Was it just himself and his role in our National Security in the Clinton years? Or were there others that the documents would either embarrass or implicate?
I haven't read the report yet, but will post on it later.

Monday, December 11, 2006

Palestinian Self-rule

Radio Netherlands is reporting
Palestinian gunmen in the Gaza Strip have shot dead three children of a senior al-Fatah official. The three boys, aged six, seven and eight, were being dropped off at school in a car when the shooting occurred. Two other children in the schoolyard were injured. The killings are thought to be part of the escalating conflict between the ruling Hamas movement and President Mahmoud Abbas' al-Fatah movement.
They were the children of Colonel Baha Balousha. An adult bystander is also reported to have died in the attack. New York Times: Balousha escaped an attack by gunmen in September, Palestinians said.

Mr. Balousha is regarded as one of the figures involved in a Palestinian Authority crackdown against Hamas members a decade ago, and he has been at odds with Hamas (the radical Islamic group that currently heads the government) for some time, Palestinians said.

Palestinians voted for these guys, folks.

Drudge Falling Down on the JOB

Drudge has been running "Diana bugged by U.S. " story now for three days. It's tedious. And incomplete. The report also said that Henri, the driver, worked for French Intelligence Services. Which means, what????

It means Drudge is missing the really BIG stories in Europe.

As much as we complain about bureacratic stupidity, you only have to read about the EU (pronounced EWWWWWW) to feel slightly better. Deutsche Welle reported in November that since each EU country was entitled to have a commissioner, when Romania joins in January, they had to create a new post for the Romanian representative.

Leonard Orban (above right) will be the First Commissioner for Multilingualism. "English is not enough," Orban said. "Multilingualism is good for businesses and competitiveness." And then there is the gender-sensitive issue of language to consider. Uh yeah.

Bye and Write When You Can

FLATTERED. The U.S. should be flattered that Kofi Annan criticized the U.S. in his farewell speech. Annan is the tip of the corruption scandal that was the Food for Oil program. While he was in charge of peacekeeping forces, he was responsible for the delays in Rwanda that caused 800,000 deaths. And his reform of the Human Rights Commission that resulted in an even worse Human Rights Council is laughable.

Being lectured by a crook isn't new for the U.S. Hugo Chavez recently appeared at the U.N. with the same complaints. And, come to think of it, Nikita Kruschev and Fidel Castro had similar criticisms.

The word "corruption" isn't found once in the full text of his speech. The speech was given at the Truman Library. If Truman was alive, he'd have kicked the bastard out the front door.

Bad News, Good News, Predictable News

The bad news is that William Jefferson (Democrat- Louisiana) was reelected with 57 percent of the vote.
The good news is that the turnout was only 16 percent.
The predictable news was that no one in the media thought a turnout that low was extraordinary.

But, then, we are talking about Louisiana and New Orleans in particular. And our own lamebrain media and the Democrat party. No wonder the Democrats don't want democracy for Iraq. If they promised it for Iraq, they'd have to deliver for New Orleans, Baltimore, Detroit, St. Louis, and Cleveland.

Sunday, December 10, 2006

Reality Check

Headline: UN downgrades man's impact on the climate

Reality: Global scammers have overhyped their predictions of dire hurricanes and rising sea levels and lost credibility. And -- this is where the gun meets the bullet -- none of the Kyoto Accord countries have reduced emissions. In fact, they have increased emissions.

Plus, I strongly suspect the real reason is that those countries who intended to use the Emission Trading Credits to funnel money from their government to Russia are having second thoughts about dealing with Putin. He makes a dangerous adversary.

Hence, Al Gore might soon be out of a job as Chief Scaremonger. (Not that he's particularly believable.)

Saturday, December 09, 2006

The Joys of Marxism

The Joys of Marxism - Zimbabwe.
ZIMBABWE has the highest inflation and lowest life expectancy in the world, not to mention the highest percentage of orphans. So desperate is the shortage of food that President Robert Mugabe’s own guards have been spotted shooting squirrels in Harare’s Botanical Gardens.
Of course, the media is doing their part by not mentioning that Mugabe is a Marxist reviving the Pol Pot dream delusion.

Only rarely does the media refer to Mugabe's commitment to his Marxist ideals, as in this 2002 BBC item. Few mention his racism , the almost constant violence, insane agrarian reform, and the deliberate policy of famine to stay in power. The fact that he is anti-West, anti-White, anti-capitalism, anti-colonial, and anti-American are good enough for the media to reward him with the silence they accorded Pol Pot. And help shield him and Kim Il-sung from condemnation.

Deliberate famine is a not new as a political instrument. In modern times, the Cultural Revolution and the Politics of Famine comes to mind. It, too, was blandly dismissed by the MSM. As was the deliberate famine encouraged by Stalin that was dismissed by New York Times William Duranty.
Duranty was not a communist or even blind to the Soviet excesses; he simply excused the forced labor camps, property seizures, and political purges as measures necessary to drive a backward country into the twentieth century. "You can't make an omelet without breaking some eggs," was a phrase many remembered Duranty using to excuse Soviet tactics...
But Duranty did more than equivocate; he repeatedly cast doubt on whether the famine was taking place, relying on scarcely more than official Soviet press reports. In so doing he allowed himself to become a vehicle of Soviet propaganda.
The media are still vehicles for evil. In Zimbabwe. In Rwanda. In North Korea. In Iran. In Darfur. And every despotic regime in the world they can't bring themselves to criticize.

United Nations Irrelevance? and MADD misdeeds

When the notoriously leftwing Toronto Star says the new United Nations Human Rights Council is "flirting with `irrelevancy'" and questions whether they are even necessary, you know the Council is so flagrant even the most leftwing can no longer deny it.
With a range of experts already monitoring human rights, some critics question whether a human rights council made up of governments, which have their own political axes to grind, can make any useful contribution to improving rights worldwide.
Indeed. In fact, some of the world's worst offenders are on that council. But the last one was the same way, which would lead any reasonable person to ask if the problem was institutional. That the Toronto Star doesn't even consider it really confirms it.

The Toronto Star has been busy investigating the charity MADD (Mothers against Drunk Drivers) Canada and finds "most of the high-profile charity's money is spent on fundraising and administration, leaving only about 19 cents of each donor dollar for charitable works."
Donors across Canada gave $5.4 million over the last year when the charity's telemarketers called. MADD's financial statements show 76 per cent ($4.1 million) was kept by the telemarketer. Part of the remaining 24 per cent ($1.3 million) was eaten up by other charity expenses such as administration, leaving little for good works.
Amazingly, the "charity" charges schools $800 a multimedia presentation on the dangers of drinking and driving. They make $100,00 profit a year on the presentation.

Thursday, December 07, 2006

European Socialists

How many Democrats -- and independents and Libertarians -- would have voted for Democrats in the last election if they actually knew they were voting for this? European Socialists eager to work with U.S. Democrats

Howard Dean is attending the two-day conference together with the leaders of leftist governments of several countries and party leaders from across Europe.

Yellow Republicans

Why don't Republicans have these kinds of passions before elections? Sen. James M. Inhofe, in one of his final actions as chairman of the Environment and Public Works Committee, held a hearing to investigate whether press accounts have "over-hyped" predictions of global warming.

Yellow Republicans, who are afraid of shadows and media criticism, run away from convictions as though they were signs of disease. Sen Inhofe has, to his credit, done much with the committee while he chaired it. But instead of crediting him with the spirit of debate, his fellow Republicans shy away from any "controversy" that might lead to an editorial in the Washington Post or the New York Times. Heaven forbid, they should do their jobs and stand up for something (besides re-election.)

The one thing I always liked about Newt Gingrich, and still do, is his unwaivering support of his own beliefs. I may not always agree with him, but I respect the intellectual exercise that lead him to his views. You can't say that about most Republicans.

We are truly blessed in this country that the men who chose independence over colonial rule and who persisted in their defense of religion, free speech, and morality had guts and fortitude. And decency. They would not have called themselves Yellow Republicans.

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Brave, New World

In Spain, a new law passed in May -- The Assisted Reproduction Law -- is another step into a Brave, New World. Yesterday it came a step closer when three couples were selected to have a child that will be a donor for a sibling. The newborn children will not, of course, survive. They will be donating their bone marrow.

Tuesday, December 05, 2006


When Lufthansa, Germany's largest airline and one of Airbus' biggest customers, decides to buy from Boeing, you can bet they know that the A-380 is kaput.

Thursday, November 30, 2006


OOPS Oprah hasn't been doing very well lately. There was James Frey and her on-then-off defense of him, and then Dr. Phil, another Oprah find. And then there was Twyana Davis. You might remember her- she wrote Sacred Womb, a book about her experiences, and appeared on television's 20/20 and Oprah. That was before it turned out that the child she had after a supposed rape turned out to be the result of the rape of her own 12-year-old cousin. She's now officially a sexual predator and doing 10-25. But she still has a page at Oprah's website.

Now there's the Angel of Soweto who, well, isn't. A recent South African documentary revealed the extent of the fraud as the Guardian reports. Oprah's Angel, apparently, had frequent brushes with the law.   And her school isn't exactly what it appears.

Essay of the Month

Right Wing Nut House on Stringing Us Along on the media and Capt. Jamil Hussein and the arrogance of the AP. Read the whole thing.
Gullibility is not really the issue. I believe the issue is laziness. And perhaps a lack of passion that enables the reporter to simply go through the motions of being a journalist instead of living up to what his editors and readers expect.

This story is revealing of many things, not the least of which is that our free press is in trouble. Partly from infringements by government but also by lousy stewardship of this precious right being carried out by many the current practitioners of the craft. Not all, of course. There are still some excellent journalists writing for the top publications. But by and large, those whose responsibility it is to inform us, to keep us abreast of what’s going on in the world, are failing and failing badly.
They are just stringing us along.
State Department
More State Department misconduct. that a blogger nails perfectly. Read the whole thing. He's got more information than you can find in the AP story mindlessly and shamefully reprinted in newspapers who are too damned lazy to do their own research.

Just Wondering
Why is it that when Europhiles at the State Department are speaking they never mention European reality? Possibly because most of them are so enamored with Socialism that the impact, the reality of it, is something they feel is as an acceptable cost. In Germany, the good news is that unemployment fell to -- get this -- 10.2%

Donald Trump does Scotland. (The commenters aren't impressed.)

More joys from having a Marxist president. Or as one commenter put it, "The people must be WISHING they were still living under the old apartheid government of Ian Smith's........"

Proposition A Upheld
In San Diego, they voted 75% for Proposition A transferring Mount Soledad cross to the Federal government in order to save it. It's been a battle since 1989. Today an appellate court upheld the Proposition.

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Briefly Noted

Britain In the continuing probe of the death of Alexander Litvinenko, authorities have found traces of radiation on two British Airways has found jets. The jets were grounded.

Mexico Violence continues in Mexico. This time, in Mexico's Congress. In Tijuana, two more police officers were gunned down. That brings to twelve the number of law enforcment officials killed in Tijuana just since September. In Monterey, the police chief, a councilman, were just a few of the officials murdered or beheaded in the last four months.

The Disney Folks - - just in time for the holidays, folks -- Danny DeVito on The View talking about "wrecking" the Lincoln Bedroom when he and his wife were guests of Bill Clinton. In his drunken appearance on The View -- ironically plugging his Christmas movie for kids -- he fondly recalled that he and and his wife "utilized" (had sex) e-v-e-r-y place in that that bedroom.

Ford Motor Nearly half of Ford's unionized workers have accepted buyouts. In all, 38,000 accepted the offer. Another 34,000 had accepted buyouts over this last summer. Ford plans to mortgage most of its assets in North America. . As security to refinance loans

Scotland The joys of socialized medicine includes a 265-day wait for cancer treatment.

Blogosphere Who is Jamil?

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Clinton Crackpot Judge

A 1994 Clinton appointee to the Federal court, U.S. District Judge James Robertson, ordered the U.S. Treasury come up with ways for the blind to tell bills apart. He said he wouldn't tell officials how to fix the problem, but he ordered them to begin working on it. It's a perceived discrimination. /snort

You might remember crackpot Robertson. He resigned from Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISA) to "protest" against "President Bush's secret authorization of a warrantless domestic spying program. If it was such an abomination, why didn't he stay on to fight for what he believed? Can't you just tell why?? More More

For the Left, making grandiose statements is about as effective as they can get.

New York Times adjusts language on Iraq

This just in: From the self-adulating, ant-war, anti-Bush, Dutch-owned Editor & Publisher, stark news that the war in Iraq is now a "civil war".
In the wake of the highly-publicized NBC and MSNBC decision to start referring to the conflict in Iraq as a "civil war," other media outlets, which have long used phrases such as "sectarian violence," are re-considering their language in this regard.
Quick to embrace the phrase, Bill Keller of the anti-war, anti-Bush, America-bashing New York Times, happily agreed. No other paper seems to have scurried to make that choice. And for good reason.
"Words have power, and naming it a civil war does begin to shape people's perception of what's happening there," Thomas Hollihan, a professor at USC's Annenberg School for Communication who studies political rhetoric, told the Los Angeles Times.
But is it true? Shouldn't that be the criteria? You'd bloody well have thought so.

But, then, the New York Times' Walter Duranty failed to even notice a deliberate famine in the Soviet Union that killed an estimated 20 million because he was so enamored with the grand new experiment of communism. It's likely he, too, stayed in the green zone in Moscow all that time.

We're Not Biased

An Associated [with terrorists] Press story, "Newspaper Stocks Fall After Analyst's Warning on Profits" notes that some, ah, disturbing losses.

Shares of Gannett Co. . . . shed 8 cents to $58.99.
Shares of Dow Jones & Co. . ..were flat at $34.44
Shares of Tribune Co. . . . slumped 13 cents to $31.65
New York Times Co.,. . . dropped 26 cents to $23.64
News Corp. . . . fell 31 cents to $21.11
Media General Inc., . . . added 11 cents to $36.46
McClatchy Co.,. . . , tumbled 30 cents to $41.10
EW Scripps, . . . lost 10 cents to $48.33

Notice the descriptions. The biggest loser is News Corp (fell) while McClatchy (tumbled), but you'd think the New York Times (dropped), would have been described as "slumped" at least. The AP reserves that for the hated Tribune Co.  

Saturday, November 25, 2006

We just can't understand....

Kommersant, Russian daily, is perplexed about why "The West Is Ready to Believe the Worst about Russia" in an article entitled, "Russia's Poisonous Foreign Policy". It's a particularly odd title when the story is about the poisoning of former FSB officer Alexander Litvinenko. And it's chilling when they list the following famous poisonings:
On August 4, 1995, head of Rosbiznesbank Ivan Kivelidi was poisoned with a nerve agent that had been placed on the telephone in his office. Vladimir Khutsishvili, a member of the board of directors of the bank, was arrested on suspicion of murder in October, but later released for lack of evidence. On June 30, 2006, Khutsishvili was arrested again after new evidence came to light, and is now awaiting trial.

On April 11, 2002, the FSB reported that field commander Khattab had been liquidated in Chechnya. According to the media, he was killed with a poisoned letter. Militants shortly thereafter shot Dagestani resident Ibragim Alauri, who allegedly sent the poisoned letter to Khattab on instructions from the FSB. The FSB denied having any ties with Alauri.

On July 3, 2003, Novaya gazeta newspaper writer and State Duma member from Yabloko Yury Shchekochikhin died of what was called a brain hemorrhage. Many of his colleagues suspected that he was poisoned. His investigation of smuggling by the Three Whales stores and publications about corruption in law enforcement bodies were thought to be the motives.

On June 1, 2004, Khizri Aldamov, representative of Ichkerian President Aslan Maskhadov in Georgia, along with his son and nephew, were hospitalized in Tbilisi for “poisoning.” The Georgian Interior Ministry determined that Aldamov's car had been poisoned with a phosphorous-containing substance. The victim claimed that he was poisoned on orders of the Russian FSB.

On September 24, 2004, general director of Baltic Escort private security company Roman Tsepov died in St. Petersburg. The cause of his death was poisoning by a medicine used to treat leukemia. Tsepov did not have leukemia. The company headed by Tsepov provided protection to the leaders of the city, including mayor Anatoly Sobchak and his deputy Vladimir Putin. The murder is still under investigation.

They left out the poisoning of Viktor Yushchenko.

It's not like it's a pattern or anything. Ya think?

Favorite postings

(Sometimes I have to remind myself to be outraged.)

a The Russiafication of the EU Here
It is particularly relevant after what British Intelligence are calling the "state-sponsored assassination" of Alexander Litvinenko. Ironically, or maybe not, Putin was meeting with EU leaders in Finland at the time of Litvineko's death. The Times of London notes that "his hosts did not bring up the murder in the talks on Russia’s long-term relations with the EU". And it's just the beginning.

a The Russiafication of Hollywood Here
a When is War Not a War? Pt. 1 Pt 2
a Teaching - New Orleans Style Here
a Media Blackout Here


I can't decide if it is self-delusion or deliberate amnesia. Or panic. Edward Lucas is Central and Eastern Europe correspondent for The Economist, writing in the Times of London, that the West should fight Putin's menace. By?
"the West must stick together." [And] "British eurosceptics must drop their defeatist disdain for a common European foreign policy, especially in the field of energy security. "
The problem is that, in all reality, Britain and the rest of the EU are no longer part of "the West." The common European foreign policy is dictated by France and Germany, both firm supporters of Putin. Any deviancy is not tolerated without generating strong EU pressure on member countries to confirm. Witness Poland's attempt to exert pressure on Russia and how quickly that spark of independence was squashed in the interests of "harmony". Not to mention, gas supplies.

That Britain is no longer a self-governing nation is evident. An example will suffice. New rules from the EU will cost city regulators £1bn with no discernable benefits and no actual legislation having been passed in Britain. Consequently, there is no recourse for British citizens to protest the newest EU Rule-that-nobody-voted-for. That's one of the joys of international socialism - you suffer under the same insufferable rules and regulations dictated by petty bureaucrats. And, when you think about it, there really isn't much difference between East Germany as a Russian satellite and Britain as an EU-satellite country. The independence is pure illusion.

Reason #4851 -
to Cancel your Newspaper Subscription

One of the really nice things about cancelling your newspaper subscription is that the in-your-face PETA stories - aren't.
It's funny how when you aren't bombarded with their self-seeking publicity stunts, you can find a lot to laugh about.

I just never knew they had captive animals in entertainment specialists.

Saturday, November 18, 2006

Why tryrants love the UN

By a vote of 77-62 with 26 abstentions, a UN human rights committee voted a draft resolution to go to the Genral Assembly to "discourage UN human rights bodies from condemning any country on human rights." The resolution was sponsored by Belarus and Uzbekistan, both serial human rights violaters. John Bolton had some choice words.
The new Human Rights Council in Geneva, which earlier this year replaced the discredited Human Rights Commission, has met three times to pass resolutions condemning Israel but hasn't dealt with human rights in Myanmar, North Korea or Sudan, Mr. Bolton said.
Of course not. When even the notoriously leftwing Human Rights Watch condemns Belarus, and warns of the abuse by Uzbekistan, you know they are outrageous in their violations.

They, no doubt, feel right at home at the United Nations.

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Lies and Liars

The defense attorney warned jurors that they were being asked to rein in the 1st Amendment freedoms "that founding fathers granted to newspapers and the to the press."
"The 1st Amendment of our Constitution guarantees our right to criticize politicians, especially elected politicians,"Rosenfeld told the jury. "We must be able to tee off against the government in the press. That's what freedom of the press is all about."
The jurors, unlike the attorney, understood all right that freedom of speech is for every individual, not reserved for newspapers and the press. They also understood defamation when they saw it.

They found the Kane County Chronicle and reporter Bill Page guilty of defamation, finding that two columns were false and published with actual malice. The jury awarded Chief Justice Robert Thomas $7 million.

I guess in teeing off against politicians, they'll just have to tell the truth. Or, as Thomas' attorney said. "Lies and liars are not protected under the First Amendment."

Sunday, November 05, 2006

Eeee Ewwwwww

Oh those bothersome details. For all their endless meetings and moral superiority and smugness, the EU isn't doing so much for the environment.
Some industries and lobbying groups opposed to mandatory limits point out that emissions in the United States grew just 1.3 percent during that period, far less than the 2.4 percent measured in the European Union.

But environmentalists said economic growth in the United States was slow in those years, and they noted that Europe's binding restrictions took effect only this year.
In other words, while the EU talked -- endlessly -- about emissions, the U.S. was actually doing something. Bush's fault.

European Pretensions

Instead of worrying about global warming, maybe the EU should be worried about keeping the lights on? Ya think?

Good for Stephen Harper

Canada's Prime Minister Stephen Harper has decided against attending a planned Canada-EU summit. The meeting was to have been held on Nov 27 in Finland. Most news stories report "critics slam" and "annoyed European Union leaders". But you know it's mostly annoying to the critics in the media.

On Friday, Britain and Germany announced that global warming would be at the top of the international agenda. It was clearly going to be a means to pressure Harper into the global emission trading scheme that they hope will yield them trillions of dollars. And, as Christopher Monckton in the Sunday Telegraph, puts it,
Last week, Gordon Brown and his chief economist both said global warming was the worst "market failure" ever. That loaded soundbite suggests that the "climate-change" scare is less about saving the planet than, in Jacques Chirac's chilling phrase, "creating world government".
Read the whole thing.

Just your usual Democrat politics

Senator Barack Obama Dem-IL bought a $1.65 million house last November. On the same day an adjoining vacant lot was purchased for $625,000. In January the Obamas paid $104,500 for a portion of that lot.

The problem is the lot was owned by Antoin "Tony" Rezko. Rezko donated to Obama's Senate races and federal fund, but what he's most famous for is when he pleaded not guilty to charges of squeezing investment firms who wanted to do state business for millions. He is also is charged with fraudulent loans and swindling investors. Tony is well-connected in Chicago politics. In particular, to Dem. Gov. Blagojevich. Rezko "has extensive ties in the Middle East, according to the Chicago Tribune. He has since filed for bankruptcy, a claim that few believe.

Saturday, November 04, 2006

East German politics in the U.S.

East Germans were famous for their honeypot traps used to ensnare targets in sexual liasons. The purpose was to diminish the individual and trap him or her into working for the foreign intelligence service. There's a suspicion of that in the Mark Foley and Rev. Ted Haggard scandals. In both, the timing was designed to affect the too-close-to-call race. In both, the events were several years in the past. So the moral outrage was delayed at best. And both are sexual liasons where it is unclear who was the aggressor. In Foley's case and in Haggard's there is no question that the actions were legal and consentual. What is debatable is whether Foley and Haggard were set up.

One that obviously not set up and wasn't even genuine was the accusation days before the election that Arnold Schwartzenegger groped a woman. Turns out she was not only ugly but the wife of a union official. The public didn't buy it.

Other ads and election techniques make you wonder about the veracity of the Democrats in this election. In the Missouri Senate race, Claire McCaskill is running ads with Wesley Clark and what is described as an Iraq war veteran identified as Josh Lansdale. A separate Landsdale ad is on Utube. After investigation by local Kansas City TV station, KMBC, it turns out Lansdale was found to be less than credible. The Dems must have thought so, too, as the McCaskill campaign which later cut him from the ads.
Hat tip: Michelle Malkin here

Friday, November 03, 2006

European News

Paris airport staff included some 72 who were suspended for, among other things, making trips to Afghanistan and Pakistan and, oh, by the way, spending time at terrorist training camps. One-fifth of the 83,000 employees are Muslim, according the the International Herald-Tribune.

If you have Naples on uour itinerary, think again. They're in the grips of a mafia war. Romano Prodi, leftwing Prime Minister, is considering sending in troops to quell the violence.

Doing time isn't so bad in the Netherlands. You just pay someone to do serve your sentence. Justice Minister Ernst Hirsch Balin: It's a person permutation or incorrect data. Really???

In what should be a preview for the EU, Russia is doubling the price of gas they sell to Georgia. This, after a diplomatic spat. They have promised, sorta, not to cut off supplies of electricity or gas as they did to the Ukraine last year. In mid winter.

In Spain, a judge ruled downloading music was legal as long as it was for private purposes. In response, the government is drafing a new law to abolish the right to personal copies of material. On the side of the people, as usual.


Hamas terrorists are brave when they strap bombs to school children and then pay off their families. They are incredibly photogenic to Western media when they parade around a flag-draped coffin. But when it comes to hiding behind women, they is no one like them.

Holed up in a mosque and under Israeli fire, Hamas appealed to women to converge on the mosque so the men could be smuggled out. They did, with the expected results.  There were the usual celebrations as men fired in the air with their Kalashnikovs.


Woman pleads guilty to assaulting city manager and director of human resources. But when it came to assaulting a reporter, she was acquitted.   No doubt because at one time every one of 'em wanted to slap a reporter alongside the head.

Angry as Hell

The Wall Street Journal pulls no punches with Acorn , the liberal activist group.
In reality, Acorn is a union-backed, multimillion-dollar outfit that uses intimidation and other tactics to push for higher minimum wage mandates and to trash Wal-Mart and other non-union companies. Operating in at least 38 states (as well as Canada and Mexico), Acorn pushes a highly partisan agenda, and its organizers are best understood as shock troops for the AFL-CIO and even the Democratic Party.
Four Acorn workers have been indicted in Missouri.
Acorn workers have been convicted in Wisconsin.
Acorn workers have been convicted in Colorado.
Investigations are under way in Ohio, Tennessee and Pennsylvania.
As part of the Fannie Mae reform bill, House Democrats pushed an "affordable housing trust fund" designed to use Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac profits to subsidize Acorn, among other groups.
So why is Houston Mayor Bill White teaming with Acorn?

The Employment Policies Institute (EPI) alleges fraud in 12 states in a recent report.
Terence Scanlon, president of the respected Capital Research Center, details some of their 2004 activities.

So why hasn't the Justice Department done more about this before? And why are our media so intent on playing gotcha political games when our political process is being corrupted?

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Associated Idiots

File this under: Associated [with terrorists] Press trash.

AP Executive Editor Kathleen Carroll is calling on news organizations to protest the continued imprisonment of Associated Press photographer Bilal Hussein. He has been in custody for 6 1/2 months.
Among the images that likely drew U.S. military interest in Hussein was a 2004 photo he shot of masked insurgents firing on U.S. forces, which was among those that won AP a Pulitzer Prize in 2005.
In an interview with NPR, Kathleen Carroll, she discussed the circumstances of his arrest.
MARK JURKOWITZ: Let's talk about the specifics of this case. What happened? Where was he when he was detained? Can you give me the circumstances of that day?

KATHLEEN CARROLL: Sure. The most detail we have about that comes from the U.S. military, which says that he was in a building with two other people when he was arrested in the morning.

MARK JURKOWITZ: Two other people that the military have characterized as enemy combatants or insurgents. Is that correct?

KATHLEEN CARROLL: That's what they told us, yes. We have been in touch with them, but he says that, you know, he was doing his job as a journalist, which involves talking to all kinds of people, and making himself available to talk with them so that he can make pictures of them without endangering himself.

MARK JURKOWITZ: Are you aware to any extent what his relationship with members of the insurgency might be? Do you know, frankly, whether he has just sources within the insurgency or would have any special knowledge about what's going on there?

KATHLEEN CARROLL: I would say two things about that, Mark. One, we are not particularly interested in trying to suss- out the details and evidence and try Bilal, you know, on your program or any other way in the media.
As for his close relationships with persons known to be responsible for kidnapping, smuggling, improvised explosive attacks and other attacks on coalition forces, Carroll had this to say.
Bilal grew up in Fallujah. I don't know about you, but not all the people that I grew up with turned out exactly well. You know, some of them ended up doing things that our mothers might not like. I don't know whether that's the case with Bilal, because we've never had any names associated with this.
What she doesn't say is that Hussein was captured with two insurgents, including Hamid Hamad Motib, an alleged"\ leader of al-Qaida in Iraq, something NPR kinda left out when they were discussing the e-mail from the military. Nor does she mention that bomb-making materials were found in the apartment where he was arrested and how he tested positive for traces of explosive.


A Maine attorney, Thomas Connolly, 49, was arrested for criminal threatening after dressing up as bin Laden, brandishing a toy assault rifle (Reuters: gun that turned out "was fake").    Even the Associated (with Terrorists) Press got the "fake assault rifle" right, as well as the plastic dynamite and grenades and the replica AK-48.   Reuters did admit that Connolly was a Democrat and ran for governor in Maine in 1998. Connolly frequently dons a Bush mask and "dances herky herky" to make political statements.

Local paper: Police officers "had to order Connolly to drop his weapon several times before he complied."

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

European Briefs - all the news I can stand to read from there

EU CONSTITUTION   The EU "constitution" got a setback yesterday when the German Federal Constitutional Court refused to rule on whether the draft conformed with German's constitution.  With no referendum mechanism in Germany, the German parliament voted for it in 2005.  However, it hasn't been signed and any ruling will be delayed until 2009.  Merkel had plans to promote the "constitution" - really a treaty to cede complete national sovereignty to a bureaucracy no one can challenge.

DEMOGRAPHIC CRISIS    In the meantime, the EU has responded to the challenge of the demographic crisis Europe is facing by - you guessed it - holding a conference.  It, of course, keeps the politicos occupied.

LEFTIST WRITER INTERVIEWED  John le Carré is the pen name of David Cornwell.   Interviewed by Radio Netherlands.  Scroll to key quotes at bottom.  Dutch Radio is famous for their interviews, including one with Noam Chomsky.   Just once it would be nice if they interviewed someone who didn't hate the U.S.

ILLEGAL IMMIGRATION  Of 125 Chinese students admitted to Belgium on student visas, only 20 of them showed up at the University of Liège.   No explanation of what the DDAD filtering process is.  Not even Goggle had a clue.

Friday, October 27, 2006

Media Honesty Part I

American Press Institute has a scheme to save newspapers called NEWSPAPER NEXT: The Transformation Project. Along with Global partners AP, BBC, Reuters and Qualcomm, they, so they say, are "committed to a better-informed society." So, how come if they wanted us to be so much better-informed does their bio of a API discussion leader Shelby Coffey II fail to mention what is he is most famous for?

While editor of the Los Angeles Times Coffey issed a PC-empassioned directive to the newsroom that henceforth some 150 words were not to be used. Even the hypersensives in our society might have found the list far reaching. Don't take my word for it. Stanley Meisler, the cheerleading biogragrapher of Kofi Annan wrote:
A few years ago, the Los Angeles Times released a long list of diversity guidelines admonishing reporters not to use expressions that various peoples might find offensive. The condemned expressions included Dutch treat, welsh on a bet, and paddy wagon. News of the rules spread quickly throughout the country, and Times editor Shelby Coffey III, who released the guidelines to his staff with some fanfare, soon became a laughing stock of American journalism.
Meisler wasn't the only one who thought so. Unfortunately the best skewering of Coffeey's diversity directory was by Christopher Hitchens and isn't online. But it was puncturing as only Hitchens can be.

Not, of course, that that fiasco dimmed Coffey's career. But you would think integrity would demand a reality check. Apparently not, as Coffey took up writing about leadership. His prime prime examples of brilliance being Arthur Sulzberger, Ted Turner, and NBC News president Neal Shapiro. Last I looked, the New York Times sold less papers in their home town than the New York Post, Ted Turner had to be bailed out by Time-Warner, and NBC is nearly bankrupt.

Coffey is now a senior fellow of the Freedom Forum, "a nonprofit, nonpartisan foundation dedicated to free press, free speech, and free spirit for all people." Too bad they aren't committed to honesty.

In your dreams, pal

Human Rights Campaigners The Drive-By Media are agitating for a "small arms" treaty to be enacted by a U.N. treaty.  They are, of course, opposed by the evil U.S.   And then there's all those gun crazy American bastards.
The National Rifle Association in the past has strongly opposed UN efforts at crafting a treaty to curb private ownership of small arms.
It's an Associated Press story.   But it's echoed by AFP, Reuters, and Reuters.  And it's backed by all those Nobel Peace Prize Laureates!!!!  

The U.N. that wants to regulate small arms worldwide is the same one that stood by in Rwanda (800,000) and is twiddling in Darfur while the body count goes up daily.

This is the same organization whose Human Rights Commission was so disreputable that they had to disband it.

This is the same U.N. that would regulate small arms that allowed Yassir Arafat to addres them with a, you guessed it, a small arm strapped to his hip.

These are the same people who applauded and cheered Hugo Chave's insane rant.

And those Human Rights Campaigners who do not protest homocide bombers in Israel or scream in outrage at the daily bombing of innocents in Bagdad, well, they are indignant that people might, just might, have the means to defend themselves.

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Voting irregularities

Missouri voting fraud.   What a surprise.

When I posted regularly to I found a news story at a Florida law website.   It was written by a Clinton appointee to the bench.    I think he was in Orange County, California.   He bragged about how he and his family each voted 4-5 times in St. Louis elections for years and years.   I kid you not, a judge.   His whole family did.   It was a matter of pride and some amusement.   And it's a measure of our cynical, over-politicized times that the story made no splash.

Of course, the current worry about Missiouri voting fraud is that the Dems are not going to be able to have 110% of the electorate in St. Louis vote this time around.   Hence, the media concern.


Is the BBC biased? Yeah. They admit it.

Will it make a difference? Probably not. Like the Drive-By Media in the U.S. the BBC isn't constrained by the need to make a profit or demonstrate fairness. Or even pretend honesty. That's the trademark of the Left. Indifference to decency. In the name of the greater good, mind you!!!!

The End of 'Times'? Let's bloody well hope so

Eric Alterman, notorious Leftie, writing in The Nation, the ultra-left publication, on The End of Times?.  There's gloom in them thar newsrooms and in media conferences.  Except when the journos are reminded that they are Guardians of Democracy and an "intermediary and an interpreter between society and knowledge," as a Carnegie presenter in an "inspiring" lecture at the conference reminded them.  

I don't call that inspired.  I call it meglomania.   And then there are the excuses for the gloom.  It's the filthy profit margins demanded by Wall Street expectations that are costing jobs.   Not, of course, because those "consumers", ah, citizens, who resent the media assumption that they need an intermediary to knowledge just don't buy crap like The Nation (if you want to make a donation...) and the idiot savants like Eric Alterman.    Alterman works for MSNBC, the network that is hemorrhaging money like, as Dan Rather would say, a stuck pig on a buzz saw blade.  

Could it be that MSNBC is such a failure because of writers and thinkers like Alterman?  He seriously believes that every blog, every quasi-news outlet, every "fake" news site is parasitical on information gathered by newspapers and newsweeklies.  

Excuse me, but such outlets are the techno equivalent of the Letters to the Editor that used to -- used to -- provide the kind of feedback to newspapers and media outlets that made damn sure clueless meglomaniacs like Alterman never got beyond delivering the mail in the newsroom.  To better writers.  To people who could think.  To people who lived their lives outside of a Washington, D.C. cocktail party or a New York celeb event.

MSNBC is a colossal failure partly due to their reliance on the Eric Altermans and the Keith Obermann's who haven't a clue.  You can damn well believe that Alterman would want anyone, especially leftwing universities, buy out newspapers.  Lack of accountability is a trademark of both.  

Jack Shafer (see below) might have been responding to Alterman directly.

Endless love

Jack Shafer on Journalist's endless love -- for themselves
Newspaper people have enormous egos, if you get my drift, and don't mind massaging the big hairy things in public. Yet the press is hardly the sentry and bulwark of society that reporters imagine it to be. I don't mean to disparage reporters who put their lives on the line to file from Iraq, nor the sleuths who sift through databases to uncover wrongdoing by pharmaceutical companies, or any other enterprising reporter. But too many journalists who wave the investigative banner merely act as the conduit for other people's probing, as George Washington University professor and former investigative journalist Mark Feldstein suggests in a paper-in-progress titled 'Ventriloquist or Dummy?'
Turns out those investigative reporters are massaging government investigations and reports while simultaneously painting themselves as truth crusading investigative journalists and inferring that they are looking where the government isn't.  

And downsizing at newspapers only confirms what those who run and own newspapers think of the originality of that investigative report that -- isn't.

China bailing out Airbus

Airbus just got a bailout, only German's are calling it winning big.   China has ordered 150 A320 aircraft.  This follows a $10 billion order for Airbus planes last year that might or might not have been a firm order.   (Asia Times doesn't think so.   They say it was a "framework agreement".)  The Airbus deal also provides for plans for a plant in China with Airbus holding a 51% stake in the Tiajin facility.   A "long-term vision" thing with China.  

The fact that Airbus was intended to offer employment in the EU is moot, I guess.  "The agreement signed is for purchase of A320 family aircraft, but this family includes the A318, A319, A320 and A321, all of which are actually assembled in Germany except for the A320."   IHT (New York Times-owned International Herald Tribune) reports that French unions are not protesting opening a plant in China as they it will not take away jobs at the French Airbus facility at Toulouse.   Whether this is true, or whether the claim will prove to be true is something we can't know yet.  The IHT isn't known for their honesty.

The BBC, however, isn't too keen to look at the details.  

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Teaching - New Orleans style

It's a bold school experiment according to the Times-Picayne.   Or just maybe another indication of how poor the judgement of school administrators and teachers is in New Orleans.    Especially when it involves asking William Jefferson, D-LA, the indicted congressman, to speak at a high school class. It's a bigger picture to the Times-Picayne, though.
This week's teach-off highlights a newfound openness not just at John McDonogh but also in the Recovery District, which has given broad autonomy to principals at the 17 state-run schools.
It beats teaching. As the 2006 (GEE) Graduation Exit Examination results for McDonogh Senior High School shows. (Be sure to click on GEE to see what the scores mean.)

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Remembering Rwanda

In Rwanda public hearings are being broadcast live on radio on the complicity of France in the 1994 genocide. France has been long accused of having armed and trained those who were responsible for the killings.

Not that John Kerry or our Lamebrain Drive-By media will notice. They never noticed the killings, although how 800,000 died in the 100-day mass murder without public scrutiny is something no one can explain. Except, they didn't notice the 2 million who died under Pol Pot, either.

French ambitions     According to testimony, France, in Rwanda under a U.N. directive, had their own agenda.
Jacques Bihozagara -- a founding member of the Tutsi-led RPF, which is now the country's ruling party, and later Rwanda's ambassador to France -- said French policy was then driven by concerns about losing influence in Africa.

"France conducted a denigration and demonisation campaign against the RPF and its leaders," he told the panel in testimony aired live by Rwandan radio. The public hearings are the second phase of the probe.

Bihozagara said the policy aim was to support the French-speaking majority Hutu-led government in Rwanda against the RPF, which had bases in Uganda, an English-speaking former British protectorate.

"They thought a francophone country was being attacked by an Anglophone country" and believed "they had to rush to the rescue", Bihozagara told the panel in the one-time Belgian colony.
United Nations failure (again)   In the meantime, United Nations justice is, even now, stalling as it has done in Cambodia, as they wait for the clock to run out in order to avoid trying the guilty. In Rwanda, the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) has -- get this enormous effort that has taken nine years and half a billion dollars -- since 1997 has tried and convicted a total of 25 ringleaders.

And lack of accountability   Of course, the real beauty of the U.N. tribunal is that the one most responsible for the tragedy - the United Nations - will not be subjected to tough questioning. No one will question Kofi Annan's role in the tragedy. As head of U.N. peacekeeping forces at the time, he ignored the problem. As did the First Black President, Bill Clinton.

Liberalism kills    The State Department under Bill Clinton refused to even acknowledge the "G" word. Then, as now in Darfur, the very label might compel them to act, as Steve Bradshaw, BBC Panorama correspondent, wrote.
The department's legal team feared that recognising the G Word would oblige the US to intervene because of the UN Genocide Convention. In fact the convention mandates no such thing, merely makes it a possibility. The lawyers knew this but politicians feared the public wouldn't follow such subtle reasoning.

Then, when the UN did decide to summon up an intervention force, the US delayed over the despatch of armoured vehicles. The arguments ranged from what colour to paint the vehicles to who would be paying for the painting.
That was Bill Clinton's State Department. That was Bill Clinton's part in the "Contract with Mutual Indifference." It's something Rwandan's aren't about to forgive.

Other witnesses to failure    But you dont' have to believe the BBC. General Romeo Dallaire, commander of the UN force wrote unflinchingly about on the failure in his book, "Shake Hands with the Devil".    Even the notoriously leftwing Guardian has nothing good to say about Bill Clinton's inaction in Rwanda.   Formerly classified documents reinforce the view that claiming ignorance isn't a viable defense

"Staying out of Rwanda was an explicit U.S. policy objective," wrote Samantha Power in her lengthy "Bystanders to Genocide" Sept 2001 Atlantic Monthly series based on declassified documents obtained through the Freedom of Information Act. There are a lot of familiar names in that report.

Of course, the best desciption of what did not happen was given by Clinton himself in an interview with Andrew Denton.
ANDREW DENTON: There must be a great sense of guilt about that. You can't put that in the abstract.

BILL CLINTON: I feel badly about it. I said so in the book. And the interesting thing was - and I don't hold anybody that worked for me more responsible than myself - but there was no particular call for it in the United States at the time, and not much clamour in Congress or in the editorial pages.
Knowing Clinton felt badly about it must be a great comfort to Rwandans. And the fact that our very own Drive-By media played a part in it is, well, just kinda forgotten, isn't it?

Monday, October 23, 2006

A sobering setback   For those holding out hope for stem cell research to be the magic cure, the reality is less than wonderful. Stem cell research may be no more than a cruel hoax.  

Or a political game.  Certainly, the Michael J. Fox video ad is a disgraceful and cheap political shot. In accusing the Republican candidate Senator Talent of wanting to criminalize stem cell research, Fox discredits himself and his organization.   He demeans himself.  As a poster to utube remembers, wasn't it John Edwards in 2004 who implied that if John Kerry were elected, Christopher Reeves would walk again because they would do the right things? Charlies Krauthhamer who does live in a wheelchair, was disgusted.
In my 25 years in Washington, I have never seen a more loathsome display of demagoguery. Hope is good. False hope is bad. Deliberately, for personal gain, raising false hope in the catastrophically afflicted is despicable.
It's politics. Democrat politics.
Politicians have long promised a chicken in every pot. It is part of the game. It is one thing to promise ethanol subsidies here, dairy price controls there. But to exploit the desperate hopes of desperate people with the promise of Christ-like cures is beyond the pale.
It was true in 2004.    And it is still despicable.

Sunday, October 22, 2006

Fifth Columnists is a good choice of words.  Dailypundit on the New York Times apology.  He doesn't mince words.   (As Instapundit would say, HEH)

Saturday, October 21, 2006

It isn't a SNL skit.  It's just Miami.   
The Archdiocese of Miami apologized to Mark Foley for the priest who admitted that he had fondled Foley forty years ago.  The confession came from Anthony Mercieca, "who now lives on the Mediterranean island of Gozo".  Gozo???

In an apparently unrelated story, two Delray priests have led the good life.  In Las Vegas.

In the meantime, Barry Minkow of the 1980s ZZ Best Co. scam, is now a senior pastor at Community Bible Church in San Diego.    With some dubious friends.
German Irony   It's ironic when the Germans pass a law banning the import of seal products because the methods used to kill seals are brutal while German Chancellor Angela Merkel met with and dined with Vladimir Putin two days after the political assassination of a reforming journalist in Russia.   At the dinner, Putin predicted a bloodbath in Georgia, but that wasn't brutal enough to discourage Germans from buying Russian gas and oil.   After all, gas and oil is, well, money!

Strange bedfellows
(Shown) Steven Spielberg at a press conference in the Ukraine with "industrialist" and billionaire (#507 Forbes) Viktor Pinchuk who co-produced a documentary with Spielberg on the Holocaust in the Ukraine.

You might remember Victor Pinchuk, son-in-law of former President Leonid Kuchma. Victor was the happy winner in the privatization of Kryvorizhstal, one of the world's biggest steel plants and source of his fortune. He won the tender after beating out international rivals like LVM and US Steel who had offered twice as much. Kuchma has a lurid past, as reported by the BBC.
During his time in office, Mr Kuchma has lurched from one scandal to another, including being accused of complicity in the killing of an opposition journalist, over which he could face a jail sentence if he's charged and found guilty.
Then there was that nasty business of the poisoning of Viktor Yushchenko.

The American drive-by media chose not to mention Viktor Pinchuk. Or Mr. Yushchenko. (shown below)
THE PR WAR AGAINST TRUTH AND LEARNING    Two versions of Egyptian President Mubarak's speech.

From Middle East Online,this rallying cry.
HEADLINE: Mubarak: Islam under 'ferocious attack'
SUB-HEAD: Egypt President calls for united response to offences to Islam, urges Muslims to correct wrong image.

CAIRO - Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak said Thursday that Islam was under "ferocious attack" and called for a united response to offences to the religion.

"The Islamic world is facing a ferocious attack, painting Islam wrongly, offending Islam," Mubarak said at speech to mark the Muslim night of Leilat al-Qadr, the night the Koran is said to have come to the Prophet Mohammed.

"Arab and Islamic identity are under threat, following what happened and still happens in Lebanon, Iraq, the occupied territories and Afghanistan," he said.

"There is a need now, more than ever, to rally the efforts of the Islamic world and its people, to have one voice in the face of offence," he said.

Mubarak called on Muslims to "correct the wrong image and show the real face of Islam".

"We tell the world that Islam forbade racism and extremism. Nazism and fascism were not born on Muslim land," he said.

In August, US President George W. Bush said that a foiled bomb plot in London showed that the United States was still "at war with Islamic fascists."

"We do not accept offence to our holy beliefs with the excuse of freedom of opinion, expression or the press," Mubarak said.

"Insulting our beliefs increases feelings of anger and extremism and drags us all down dangerous slopes."

Caricatures of the Prophet Mohammed which were published in a Danish newspaper a year ago, and Pope Benedict XVI's speech in September in which he quoted a medieval Byzantine emperor who linked Islam with violence sparked outrage throughout the Muslim world.

But Mubarak also called for introspection.

"It is time for an honest stand with the world, and a stand no less honest with ourselves," he said.

"Do we not, as Muslims, bear some of the responsibility for some of the wrong ideas about Islam, have we played our role in improving its image?," he said calling for a new religious dialogue based on "mutual respect."
The Associated Press story, however, shows signs that it was massaged by a PR consultant. Totally missing was this introspection obviously meant for European audiences as reported by the (New York Times-owned) International Herald -Tribune.
Mubarak said the golden age of Islamic civilization had retreated when creativity in Islam disappeared and people strayed away from the essence of the doctrine.

"We need a new religious approach that teaches people the correct things in their religion that gives greater value for interrelations, behavior, devotion and advocates principles of forgiveness and stands against exaggeration and extremism," he said.
Typically, we are supposed to accept the lack of a transcript of the speech.  

Thursday, October 19, 2006

This was predictable.
New York's highest court ruled Thursday that social service agencies run by the Roman Catholic Church and other faiths must provide birth-control coverage to their employees, even if they consider contraception a sin.
State law requires coverage for, among other things, prescription contraceptives.

And when gay marriage - not unions, but marriages -- is legal, you can bet that all churches will, despite their moral stance, be required to perform gay marriages. Or no marriages at all.
Bleak prospects in Europe Berlin is bankrupt with a 17% unemployment rate. Airbus is so cash strapped that they are talking about laying off workers despite their unions and political interference, so cash strapped that Russia bailed the company out by buying a 5% stake in EADS. Spain is swamped by illegal immigration, the only country to admit it.

Meanwhile, Europeans are going to save the world's climate after they clean up the mess they made in the Ivory Coast. The EU is turning to Russia for gas and oil amid worries about reliability (Russia cut off the Ukraine last winter and Europe was briefly without as a pipeline was shut.) and political costs. They're just now figuring out Russia isn't trustworthy and still might be communist. (Ya think?) France is looking at a increased mob violence threat from their unassimilated muslim youth.

Italy is run by a 9-party coalition that is rapidly losing support. Poland's coastguard fired warning shots at two German ships. German ship kidnapped 3 customs officers.

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

When is war not a war? Pt 2 When the media say's it's a truce.

Like the "truce" amid "peace talks" in Sri Lanka, the "truce" in the Phiippines with the Moro Islamic Liberation Front is largely paper. In an ongoing war since the 1960s, where 120,000 have died, Manila and the MLF and Manila have been, as Reuters (via The Scotsman) points, "talking for nearly a decade". Which ought to, if you think about it, be the point of the story. Forty years of talks and 120,000 dead.

That ought to be the headline instead of the silliness of a demand to have charges dropped against a terrorist leader.

But, then, the media, our own and international media, has no interest in solutions. No interest in the innocent victims of such eternal violence. T he media story is never the story of the victims, whether in Columbia, where the death toll is over 300,000 in their 40-year war with the Marxist FARC, or in Nepal where Marxist "rebels" as the media endearingly calls cold blooded killers are waging a Marxist war against the government. To the leftwing media, FARC is a "rebel army"

These are not "rebels" or "guerillas" or "insurgents" as the media likes to call them. They are murderers who work outside a democratic process in which they would never be granted authority by an electorate. They are anti-government. Calling them "rebels" is to endow them with respectability they do not deserve.

Hugo is Hopping Mad

Hugo Chavez must be gnashing his teeth after Spain pulled out of a deal to sell Venezuela 12 airplanes because of U.S. objections.

Maybe Hugo could get another hug from Cindy Sheehan instead.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Criminal Class

A commenter at The Scotsman, termed it "like bloody James Bond this." This being, the execution of business chief (or, Property Manager, depending upon accounts), of state-run Tass, found stabbed in his apartment.

Living in Russia is almost as dangerous as being a rapper, but at least they arrest people in Manhattan.
When is a war not a war? Over 65,000 have died in Sri Lanka, the result of a war fought since 1983 by the terrorist group the Tamil Tigers. This year alone, 2000 have died. On Saturday, 90 Sri Lankan soldiers died in a homocide bombing attack. In all, 29 countries list the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) a terrorist organization. Minor countries, like the U.S., Britain, India, Australia, Canada, the EU, etc. But, apparently, not Bill Clinton.

Typical of the media coverage is this story. In August 2006 eight men, including three Canadians who traveled to New York for the purpose , were arrested when they tried to buy surface-to-air missles. CNN notes that, in addition, they tried to obtain classified information and hoped to remove the Tamil Tiger group from the U.S. terrorist organization list. Oddly -- or maybe not so oddly considering the renown CNN bias -- CNN did not refer to the group as terrorist, despite the fact that they have been on the State Department list since 1997 and Madeline Albright chose to keep them there. So, both Republicans AND Democrats acknowledge the Tamil Tigers as terrorists but the media still refers to them as "rebels."

The Times of London open worries "How can the world bring Tamil Tigers back to table?" The question is why would you want to?