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John L. Perry’s Advice from the Dark Side: “Try listening with your eyes closed”

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Folks are scratching their heads over the inner workings of John L. Perry, whose resume credentials would seem to contradict his current campaign to overthrow the U.S. government. After all, what would compel a man who worked for the Johnson and Carter Administrations to turn, in his old age, to the rantings of traitors and treasonists, calling for a coup of our democratically elected president? What happened? I have my theories.

But the fact is — just as there are some men, such as Frank Schaeffer, who consciously choose to make a u-turn from the dark side — there are some men, and John L. Perry is one of them, who are compelled to turn toward the dark side.  

The comparison between these two men ends there, as Schaeffer’s choice was toward enlightenment, whereas Perry’s choice was to embrace that certain darkness wherein a man — urging a coup of Barack Obama’s presidency — might choose to begin his epistle by paraphrasing Samuel Johnson, “Nothing focuses the mind like a hanging,” then conclude it with his own dark words, advising Americans:

“Start thinking. It comes at a time when Americans’ minds are focused on what gallows the future may hold for them and theirs.”

Those were the words penned by John L. Perry eight days before Obama’s inauguration. And, if there were any doubt as to what, exactly, Perry meant by this, he neatly clarified this in a subsequent column, on January 19 — on the eve of Obama’s inauguration — wherein Perry constructed a vision of how our democratically elected, constitutional government might best be overthrown. Building on Jeb Bush’s suggestion that Republicans form a “shadow government” (a term drawn from the British Parliamentary system), John L. Perry extrapolated this: “When a ruling party fails to stay ahead of the hounds, the shadow government, at least in theory, is equipped to step into power.”

Perhaps the years have muddled things up in Perry’s head. He confused the British Parliament with the Keystone Kops. Or maybe he just plain holds no regard for the facts. Whatever the case, Perry took Jeb Bush’s shadow and ran with it, completely sidestepping the fact that the British version of a shadow government — also called, “Her Majesty’s Loyal Opposition” — is termed “loyal” for a reason: their role is to offer healthy opposition, not to dispute the legitimacy of the government.  John L. Perry’s version, on the other hand, seeks to do just the opposite: to challenge the legitimacy of our democratically-elected, constitutional government, toward the potential goal of overthrowing it. 

Some men’s minds are compelled to turn toward darkness, some toward light. This is the warp and weft of our history, the de facto nature of our national character. We earned it. Whether John L. Perry’s decision to lurk in the shadows is based in old ignorance and old hatred, or in new money, is yet unknown. But one thing is for certain: there is no resume so spiffy that it can polish the stain off a foul soul.

For the record, if I were a betting man, I’d put my money on Deep Throat’s advice: Follow the money. In the spirit of learning from this particular history, lest we repeat it, I’ve chosen to preserve some of John L. Perry’s words, which are prone to being scrubbed from the Newsmax website. For now, you can read it straight from the horse’s, er, mouth, via this link to the Perry archive. Below are links to several notable gems from his archive. Should these links disappear, let me know. I have copies of the text. 

FROM THE PERRY ARCHIVES:

John L. Perry’s idea on insurrection against the U.S. government (published the day before Obama’s inauguration):  “A way must be found — invented if necessary — to defuse the perils lying ahead for America.”

*     *     *     *     *

John L. Perry on his discontent with the Obama Administration (published 8 days before Obama’s inauguration): “Nothing focuses the mind like a hanging.”

*     *     *     *     *

In this column, titled, “Grumpy Old Men for Sarah Palin,” (which could have as easily been titled, “Old Confederate Soldiers Hatin’ on Blacks and Protectin’ the Honor of White Women”) John L. Perry — writing in terms that any klansman would adore — explains how the men in “their day” would have handled the liberal media and left-wing politicians who were “slandering the honor of Alaska’s woman governor”: “Had such churlish conduct been inflicted on one’s mother, wife or daughter, it would have been answered in their day by horse-whipping in broad daylight.”

*     *     *     *     *

John L. Perry, writing on July 5, 2007, extolls the yet-to-be-realized greatness of George W. Bush, prefacing his column with this: “America sleep-stumbled once again through the significance of July 4, 1776. Centuries more could elapse before it awakens to history’s judgment of George W. Bush.”  Reading onward, you’d almost think Perry was talking about…. Oh, nevermind. Just read on: 

If you don’t know anything much about history, especially of your own nation, how can you pass a valid judgment about this current president, let alone about any president’s proper place in history?

At various points in their public careers George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, Franklin D. Roosevelt, Harry S Truman, and Ronald Reagan were abused most vilely in the public prints. Years later, all are re-discovered as men of greatness — just as other presidents gained little, or sunk lower, in public regard as history unfolded….

He has not pandered to popularly perceived precepts of conventional wisdom. More and more, it is becoming clear that he is, with dogged courage, listening to the dictates of his own mind and heart. In the final analysis, is that not his overriding attribute that persuaded American voters to elect him?

Put bluntly, he is one of the rare presidents who genuinely believes the right thing to do is the right thing to do. And he persists in doing that, whatever the cost.

Any conscientious reader and serious student of American history knows this rare quality is the one indispensable ingredient in history’s stern requirement for greatness.

*     *     *     *     *

In his column titled, “Clues to Deciphering Obama Speeches,” John L. Perry takes a close look at President Obama’s elocution and finds, (surprise!) an arrogant black man. In all fairness, it must be said that a man must close his eyes, in order to see things that don’t exist, just as closing one’s ears can prevent facts from seeping into the mind: 

“Elocution matters, so try listening with your eyes closed. You’ll notice Obama ends almost every sentence or phrase on a decided drop in tonal scale as added emphasis. That says you are being looked down upon oratorically by one whose haughtiness and arrogance he cannot camouflage and relishes displaying.” — John L. Perry, describing how to “listen” to an Obama speech (April 21, 2009)

*     *     *     *     *

The text of John L. Perry’s (now-scrubbed) column on staging a coup to fix the “Obama Problem” is available via a pdf here at mediamatters.org.  He prefaces this column by giving notice to all those who have been waiting for this very moment in history:  

“There is a remote, although gaining, possibility America’s military will intervene as a last resort to resolve the “Obama problem.” Don’t dismiss it as unrealistic.”

Continuing, Perry explains how there is already in place a secret component to our democracy — a built-in machination left by our forefathers, who apparently had the foresight to envision the day when it would become necessary to trample the U.S. Constitution. On this fateful day, which Perry paints in painstaking detail, our military (whose officers, according to Perry, are not compelled to obey Obama, but are readying themselves, as we speak, to defend America against the laundry list of armageddon-style scenarios prophesied in Perry’s column) will overthrow the Obama Administration, much like a “family intervention,” only with “skilled, military-trained nation-builders.”

*     *     *     *     *

What Perry seems to have overlooked, for all his fancy know-how on American history, is that the predictions for this very terrible, awful, dire time (the day when the chickenhawks and the Chicken Littles take to the streets in arms to warn us all — oh God, oh God, if only we’d listen! — that our country is about to be overrun by communists, socialists, blacks, Catholics, Japanese, Jews, Nazis, fascists — take your pick) arrive at least a few times per century. Ask the Know-Nothing Party of the 1850s; ask the Red Shirts of the 1870s; ask the Klan of 1920s; ask the doomsday predictors of the New Deal era; ask Joseph McCarthy; ask George Wallace. Twenty years from now, you can also ask Sarah Palin, Michele Bachmann and Glenn Beck: How did your socialist apocalypse pan out?

Better still, do this: be good girls and boys; learn your history well — paying special mind to people who say and do stupid things — then lather, rinse and, whatever you do, don’t repeat.  

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by Mantis Katz for the canarypapers

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Meet Joe, the Invisible Vice-Presidential Candidate

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The American public has been cheated by the media. Yeah, we get the full skinny every time Sarah Palin sneezes. And we’ve seen enough footage on Joe the so-called Plumber to inspire every McCain-Palin mob member in America to chime, “Commie!” every hour, on the hour. But Joe Biden? Unless he makes some ghastly gaffe, he’s invisible. And what a shame for American voters.

Not only is Joe Biden a man of great character and substance, who has much to contribute to the national dialogue, but his is also (uh, earth to media) running for vice-president. Fortunately, the youth of America have done their best to pick up where the media’s left off in covering one of the most qualified and promising vice-presidential candidates we’ve seen in the past 3 decades:  

ABOVE: Here’s a video of a Joe Biden speech, covered by 5th grade reporter, Damon Weaver, who also interviewed Biden (starting at 3:34 on the video). Herein, we get a taste of the human interest story, as Joe tells about the slumber party with Biden’s grandchildren and Obama’s girls. Biden also explains the duties of the Vice-President. The sound quality of the video is not the greatest, but the content is first class. I only wish the media would cover this stuff. Or, at the very least, cover some of Biden’s speeches (see below). Lacking that, I wish we had an army of Damon Weavers to get out there and tell America what the hell’s really going on. 

ABOVE: Here’s the quintessential Joe we’ve been missing on the evening news. In this video, he discusses what we *didn’t* hear during the Republican convention. Of course, if the media is indeed owned by the Bush-cheney-McCain corporate henchmen, that would explain Joe’s absence.

ABOVE: More classic Joe. Here, he discusees John McCain’s record on the economy — his policies, contradictions and conflicts of interest, past and present — explaining details we’re not likely to ever hear on the evening news. 

ABOVE: This interview (WFTV w/anchorscab Barbara West) is more typical of the treatment the Obama ticket has received from the evil, liberal elitist media. To watch any news whatsoever, besides the Keith – Rachel line-up, I honestly can’t imagine how Obama and Biden have drawn such a large support base. It goes to show that maybe Americans aren’t as dumb as Palin and McCain, nor as dumb as they think.

11 Days ’til the Election: A Study in Contrasts

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A friend passed the following onto me yesterday. I added the Harry Truman quotes, not just because Gramps McCain fancies himself a Harry Truman incarnate, but because they seem applicable.

 _______________________

What folks were doing 11 days before the election….

 

Obama?  Visiting his grandma, of course.

Biden?  Going to the reddest parts of the country, the parts Democrats
aren’t supposed to even think about, let alone campaign in.
(http://thecaucus.blogs.nytimes.com/2008/10/24/biden-makes-rare-appearance-in-w-va/?scp=2&sq=biden&st=cse)

McCain?  Begging.
(http://thecaucus.blogs.nytimes.com/2008/10/24/dont-give-up-hope-mccain-tells-supporters/)

Palin?  Testifying.
(http://www.salon.com/wires/ap/2008/10/24/D940VJB80_palin_troopergate/index.html)

And Teddy Kennedy, who *should* be in bed resting after his surgery
and radiation?  Trying to save the American healthcare system.
(http://www.salon.com/wires/ap/2008/10/24/D940VRE01_kennedy_health_care/index.html)

It’s a nice study in contrasts, I think.

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America was not built on fear. America was built on courage, on imagination, and unbeatable determination to do the job at hand. — Harry Truman

 

Written by canarypapers

October 25, 2008 at 1:33 pm

McCain’s Bogeyman Politics: The last refuge of a scoundrel

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It’s a bird! It’s a plane! A terrorist plane! An Arab! A Muslim! An Islamic extremist! A scary black man! A rock star! The anti-Christ! A commie! A socialist! A traitor! A treasonist! It’s un-American! It’s… it’s….

It’s election year.

And the McCain campaign, ever-desperate for something to run on besides their shoddily repackaged version of the Bush Administration, is grabbing at straws. As such, they’ve amassed the most reprehensible stump tactics in political history and repackaged them into a plank, of sorts: bogeyman politics. A scary mix of race-baiting, red-baiting and kitchen-sink demagoguery, bogeyman politics can turn a garden-variety politician into a scarecrow. By the same token, it can transform a great man into the very embodiment of terror: the bogeyman. History bears this out. The McCain-Palin bogeyman platform pays great tribute to the architects of fearmongering: Karl Rove, Lee Atwater, Westwood Pegler, Paul Joseph Goebbels, Joseph McCarthy and George Wallace.

And to anyone who would accuse Rep. John Lewis (GA) of going ‘over the line’ by mentioning George Wallace in his recent rebuke of McCain-Palin for “sowing the seeds of hatred and division” I would ask you to tell me: What are McCain, Palin, their surrogates and supporters doing — in both words and foulness of spirit — that is so different from what we saw during George Wallaces’s campaigns?  

Barack Obama is not even worthy to shine the shoes of John McCain. — PAC member, Deborah Johns, speaking from the pro-McCain-Palin “Stop Obama Tour” October 17, 2008

 

I’m a proponent of the “we must remember history, lest we repeat it” school of thought. Apparently, there are many in this country who have either forgotten, or they’re too young to own a visceral perspective of those bleak lessons that history has so painfully taught us over the past 60 years. Else, how could our media so easily disregard the McCain-Palin campaign’s flirtation with McCarthyism? And how could any American, except die-hard racists, embrace a platform that engages in the scary black man/scary Muslim race-baiting rhetoric (an amalgam of 1950s era racism and 21st century Muslim terrorist fearmongering)? How could anyone embrace a campaign that soils the character of a good man, based solely on the color of his skin and the unfortunate coincidence of his middle name?  

The history books will one day record the McCain-Palin campaign as being every bit as flagrantly ridiculous and dangerous as it truly is. The shame is that that we don’t recognize these destructive campaigns in their time. It is only in retrospect, years after the damage has been done. The demagogues of Nazi Germany, the McCarthy era and White Supremacy did not seize power overnight. That power had to be cultivated — word by word, fear by fear — conjuring forth the darkest elements of human nature to do war against imaginary evils. 

History tells the tale: good men and women can be drawn to do dark deeds, given the incentive of fear. While human beings may never lose their fear of the bogeyman — that amorphous being that hides in the shadows, in closets, under the bed at night and flies planes into buildings — we can choose to become more wise. Great leaders, like Obama, shed light into the dark places. Fools, like McCain/Palin, draw us further into the darkness. Wise men know the difference between the two camps. 

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Billboards showing Dr. King and Rosa Parks attending an integrated event at the Highlander Folk School in 1957 are erected across the South. To the white power structure, integration is a "communist plot" against the "Southern way of life." Therefore, anyone attending an integrated event was — by definition — a "communist."

Billboards, such as the one above, showing Dr. King and Rosa Parks attending an integrated event at the Highlander Folk School in 1957 were erected across the South. To the white power structure, integration was a “communist plot” against the “Southern way of life.” Therefore, anyone attending an integrated event was — by definition — a “communist.”

 

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by Mantis Katz for the canarypapers  

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Quotes and other foodstuffs for thought:

George Wallace was fond of red-baiting. In his 1963 inaugural speech, he compared fascist Germany to the Civil Rights movement, and he blamed desegregation and the Civil Rights movement on communism: 

This is the great freedom of our American founding fathers, but if we amalgamate [desegragate] into the one unit as advocated by the communist philosophers, then the enrichment of our lives, the freedom for our development, is gone forever….And may we take note of one other fact…. There are not enough native communists in the South to fill up a telephone booth. — George Wallace

 

They’re building a bridge over the Potomac for all the white liberals fleeing to Virginia. – George Wallace, 1968

I’ve lived here for at least 10 years and before that, about every third duty I was in either Arlington or Alexandria, up in communist country. —  John McCain’s brother, Joe, speaking about two Democratic-leaning areas in Northern Virginia, October 4, 2008

His voting record is more to the left than the announced socialist in the United States Senate, Bernie Sanders of Vermont. — John McCain, when asked if Obama is an extremist, July 17, 2008

I don’t know. All I know is his voting record, and that’s what people usually judge their elected representatives by.– John McCain (same interview) when asked if he thinks Obama is a socialist, July 17, 2008

His answer actually scared me even more… It’s kind of a socialist viewpoint. I don’t want to share my money with other people. That’s not the American dream. — Joe “the plumber” Wurzelbacher, reacting to his discussion on taxes with Barack Obama, October 14, 2008

Then the radical Islamists, the al Qaeda, the radical Islamists and their supporters, will be dancing in the streets in greater numbers than they did on Sept. 11 because they will declare victory in this War on Terror. – Rep. Steve King (R-Iowa) describing in March 2008 what would happen if Obama won the presidency

I’m going to tell you something: That boy’s finger does not need to be on the button. — Kentucky Rep. Geoff Davis (R) said of Obama, April 2008

Just from what little I’ve seen of her and Mr. Obama, Sen. Obama, they’re a member of an elitist-class individual that thinks that they’re uppity. — Georgia Republican Rep. Lynn Westmoreland, in comparing Michelle Obama to Sarah Palin, Sept 4, 2008

A few years later, he ran for the U.S. Senate. He won and has spent most of his time as a “celebrity senator.” No leadership or major legislation to speak of. His rise is remarkable in its own right – it’s the kind of thing that could happen only in America. — Rudy Giuliani, in his Sept. 2008 RNC convention speech, makes a subtle nod to Affirmative Action as the conduit to Obama’s rise in politics. 

He worked as a community organizer. — Rudy Giuliani on Barack Obama, Sept. 2008 RNC

This world of threats and dangers is not just a community, and it doesn’t just need an organizer. — Sarah Palin, Sept. 2008

I think God’s will has to be done in unifying people and companies to get that gas line built, so pray for that.Sarah Palin, June 2008

Our national leaders are sending U.S. soldiers on a task that is from God. — Sarah Palin, June 2008

As a Christian I have no duty to allow myself to be cheated, but I have the duty to be a fighter for truth and justice. — Aldolf Hitler

What does he actually seek to accomplish, after he’s done turning back the waters and healing the planet? The answer is to reduce the strength of America in a dangerous world. Terrorist states are seeking nuclear weapons without delay. He wants to meet them without preconditions. Al Qaeda terrorists still plot to inflict catastrophic harm on America. He’s worried that someone won’t read them their rights? – Sarah Palin on Obama, Sept. 2008

A writer observed: “We grow good people in our small towns, with honesty, sincerity, and dignity.” I know just the kind of people that writer had in mind…. They are the ones who do some of the hardest work in America … They love their country, in good times and bad, and they’re always proud of America.  – Sarah Palin at the Republican convention, Sept. 2008, quoting Westbrook Pegler, the racist, fascist, pro-Nazi, anti-semitic, pseudo-populist journalist/writer who openly wished for the assassinations of Franklin D. Roosevelt, John F. Kennedy and Robert Kennedy.

We believe that the best of America is not all in Washington, D.C. We believe…. We believe that the best of America is in these small towns that we get to visit, and in these wonderful little pockets of what I call the real America, being here with all of you hard working very patriotic, um, very, um, pro-America areas of this great nation. This is where we find the kindness and the goodness and the courage of everyday Americans. Those who are running our factories and teaching our kids and growing our food and are fighting our wars for us. Those who are protecting us in uniform. Those who are protecting the virtues of freedom. — Sarah Palin, explaining an early comment regardings areas of the country that are “pro-America” vs. those parts of America that are not. — Oct. 16, 2008

We believe also that there is a reason we all get teared-up when we hear Lee Greenwood sing about America, because we love America and we are always proud of being Americans. And we don’t apologize for being Americans. — Sarah Palin, October 16, 2008

McCarthyism is Americanism with its sleeves rolled. — Joseph McCarthy during the McCarthy era

I think it should be a states issue not a federal government, mandated, mandating yes or no on such an important issue. I’m in that sense a federalist, where I believe that states should have more say in the laws of their lands and individual areas. – Sarah Palin, October 2008

This nation was never meant to be a unit of one… This is the exact reason our freedom loving forefathers established the states, so as to divide the rights and powers among the states, insuring that no central power could gain master government control. — George Wallace, 1963 [EDITOR’S NOTE: The mention of ‘state’s rights’ has long been code for being anti-Civil Rights/white supremacy. This was a prominent component of George Wallace’s rhetoric, as he tried to assert the state’s right to preserve prejudice as in institution. The above is but one example, from one of his more famous speeches, delivered from the schoolhouse steps, as he physically blocked the door to bar black students from entering]

You start out in 1954 by saying, ‘Nigger, nigger, nigger.’ By 1968 you can’t say ‘nigger’ — that hurts you. Backfires. So you say stuff like forced busing, states’ rights and all that stuff. You’re getting so abstract now [that] you’re talking about cutting taxes, and all these things you’re talking about are totally economic things and a byproduct of them is [that] blacks get hurt worse than whites. And subconsciously maybe that is part of it. I’m not saying that. But I’m saying that if it is getting that abstract, and that coded, that we are doing away with the racial problem one way or the other. You follow me — because obviously sitting around saying, ‘We want to cut this,’ is much more abstract than even the busing thing, and a hell of a lot more abstract than ‘Nigger, nigger.’ — Lee Atwater, explaining the evolution of the GOP’s Southern strategy, 1981

This is not a man who sees America as you see it and how I see America. We see America as the greatest force for good in this world. – Sarah Palin on Obama,  October 2008 

Our opponent is someone who sees America it seems as being so imperfect that he’s palling around with terrorists who would target their own country.  — Sarah Palin, October 2008

My opponent’s touchiness every time he is questioned about his record should make us only more concerned. For a guy who’s already authored two memoirs, he’s not exactly an open book. It’s as if somehow the usual rules don’t apply, and where other candidates have to explain themselves and their records, Senator Obama seems to think he is above all that…. In short: Who is the real Barack Obama? — John McCain, Oct. 2008 [In short, McCain would like us ask ourselves, “Is Barack Hussein Obama a *real* American? Just who is this dark stranger? And what is this scary, black, Muslim-y terrorist-like guy going to do with our country if we elect him?”] 

I play to win. I do whatever it takes to win. If I have to fuck my opponent to win I’ll do it. If I have to destroy my opponent I won’t give it a second thought. — John McCain, spoken before a gathering of GOP operatives at the National Republican Senatorial Committee where McCain outlined his campaign strategy in his senate race.

 It is not truth that matters, but victory. — Adolf HItler

“Barack Obama’s friend tried to kill my family.” — from a McCain campaign press release, October 2008

If you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it. The lie can be maintained only for such time as the State can shield the people from the political, economic and/or military consequences of the lie. It thus becomes vitally important for the State to use all of its powers to repress dissent, for the truth is the mortal enemy of the lie, and thus by extension, the truth is the greatest enemy of the State. — Paul Joseph Goebbels on the power of propaganda

“Sit down, boy.” — Shouted at an African American media soundman by a Sarah Palin supporter during a rally  

“Kill him!” — shouted by a McCain-Palin supporter at a Palin rally, Oct. 2008

“Treason!” — shouted by a McCain-Palin supporter at a Palin rally, Oct. 2008

“Traitor!” — shouted by a McCain-Palin supporter at a Palin rally, Oct. 2008

“Off with his head!” — shouted by a McCain-Palin supporter at a Palin rally, Oct. 2008

“He’s an Arab!” — said by a McCain-Palin supporter at a McCain town hall meeting, Oct. 2008

“Commie faggot!” — shouted by a McCain-Palin supporter at a Palin rally, Oct. 2008

The great strength of the totalitarian state is that it forces those who fear it to imitate it. — Adolf Hitler

In the wake of their ongoing, indendiary rhetoric — along with the unchecked, ugly responses from the McCain-Palin rally audiences — Rep. John Lewis of Georgia issued a statement to the McCain campaign, adding his voice to the many, many others (colleagues, media figures and journalists, etc.) rebuking the campaign’s negative tactics. In Lewis’ statement, he reminded McCain of the historical precedence for violent repurcussions in the wake of such dangerous rhetoric. McCain took umbrage at this and chose to turn Rep. Lewis’ reprimand into an attack on Obama: 

Congressman John Lewis’ comments represent a character attack against Governor Sarah Palin and me that is shocking and beyond the pale. The notion that legitimate criticism of Senator Obama’s record and positions could be compared to Governor George Wallace, his segregationist policies and the violence he provoked is unacceptable and has no place in this campaign. I am saddened that John Lewis, a man I’ve always admired, would make such a brazen and baseless attack on my character and the character of the thousands of hardworking Americans who come to our events to cheer for the kind of reform that will put America on the right track. I call on Senator Obama to immediately and personally repudiate these outrageous and divisive comments that are so clearly designed to shut down debate 24 days before the election. Our country must return to the important debate about the path forward for America. — John McCain, Oct. 2008

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Perhaps, one day, John McCain will experience one of those death-bed conversions, similar to the one experienced by George Wallace, similar to the one Lee Atwater experienced while dying with a brain tumor. I’ve been around this world long enough to know that there are few burdens too heavy to bear. A heavy conscience is one of them 

I don’t know who will lead us through the ’90s, but they must be made to speak to this spiritual vacuum at the heart of American society, this tumor of the soul. It took a deadly illness to put me eye to eye with that truth, but it is a truth that the country, caught up in its ruthless ambitions and moral decay, can learn on my dime.

Mostly I am sorry for the way I thought of other people. Like a good general, I had treated everyone who wasn’t with me as against me…..My illness has taught me something about the nature of humanity, love, brotherhood and relationships that I never understood, and probably never would have. So, from that standpoint, there is some truth and good in everything. — Lee Atwater, 1990

It’s October, and I’m surprised. Should I also be scared?

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Let’s see….  

1. Our economy — that venerable house of cards — is collapsing, and the architects show no signs that they intend to do anything but stack more cards into the rafters (to hell with the foundation, to hell with the people below).

2. The news media essentially serve as a 24-7 infomercial for McCain-Palin, and yet Obama is still ahead — by double digits, according to some polls —  which means that people aren’t lining up anymore to buy the Bush-Cheney line of bullshit.

3. And, lastly, according to a Sept. 30 article in Army Times, George Bush has officially done the utterly unprecedented: He ordered a brigade of troops to to begin patrolling U.S soil, beginning on Oct. 1st, as part of the new NorthCom force. Bush dispatched the brigade in case our country needs help with “civil unrest and crowd control or to deal with potentially horrific scenarios such as massive poisoning and chaos in response to a chemical, biological, radiological, nuclear or high-yield explosive, or CBRNE attack.”

Should I be scared? I am.

But it’s a safe bet that — since this post isn’t about Sarah Palin — no one will read it, which means that, on the topic of fearful things, I can plant my tin foil hat firmly on my head and talk without fear of reprimand.

According to the Army Times article, the 3rd Infantry Division’s 1st Brigade Combat Team goes by the incredibly adorable name, “Sea Smurf” — which is the phonetically-correct moniker for it’s official name: CCMRF (the CBRNE Consequence Management Response Force). Their mission is slated to last for a year, during which time we can all take comfort in the words of Sea Smurf commander, Col Roger Clouter: “We’re going in to help American citizens on American soil, to save lives, provide critical life support, help clear debris, restore normalcy and support whatever local agencies need us to do, so it’s kind of a different role.”

Different, indeed. The brigade is equipped to use “the first ever nonlethal package that the Army has fielded,” which includes, “equipment to stand up a hasty road block; spike strips for slowing, stopping or controlling traffic; shields and batons; and, beanbag bullets.”

If the idea of soldiers patrolling your neighborhood with shields, batons and rubber bullets makes you nervous, take comfort in this: The Army Times article did issue a correction in early October, regarding the use of their non-lethal package. Accordingly, “A non-lethal crowd control package fielded to 1st Brigade Combat Team, 3rd Infantry Division, described in the original version of this story, is intended for use on deployments to the war zone, not in the U.S., as previously stated.”

Rubber bullets aside, one strategic problem with the Sea Smurf’s NorthCom mission is that, according to an April 2008 GAO report, Northcom has not bothered to involve local and state officials and governments — much less the National Guard — in their emergency preparedness planning and coordination efforts. In other words, NorthCom appears set to go it alone, leaving legislators, governors, mayors, the National Guard and the media,  to — I don’t know — step in line? 

The unprecedented pre-emptive deployment of NorthCom military troops onto U.S. soil was paved in October 2006 when Bush signed the John Warner National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2007.  A few lawmakers, such as Sen. Patrick Leahy, protested — as did governors across the country, who saw blazing red flags in the bills provisions. The governors banded together and repeatedly petitioned leaders on Capitol Hill with letters of protest, which were met, one by one, with silence. One such letter, signed by every member of the National Governors Association, read, in part:

This provision was drafted without consultation or input from governors, and represents an unprecedented shift in authority from governors . . .to the federal government….. We urge you to drop provisions that would usurp governors’ authority over the National Guard during emergencies from the conference agreement on the National Defense Authorization Act

So much for democracy. The bill passed like a hot knife through butter.

The roles of traditional emergency preparedness team workers seem to have been usurped by Air Force engineer and medical units, the Marine Corps Chemical, Biological Initial Reaction Force, a Navy weather team and members of the Defense Logistics Agency and the Defense Threat Reduction Agency. Whatever that means.

On this topic, the bi-partisan group of legislators that released the aforementioned April 2008 GAO report had a few things to say:   

I remain convinced that almost seven years after 9/11, the U.S. Northern Command, as presently structured, serves no real purpose and is a waste of taxpayers’ money. The only hope to transform this sham command into a viable asset for the American people would require major changes.  — Gene Taylor, D-Mississippi 

The United States Northern Command is supposed to be out in front in the Pentagon’s efforts to support civil authorities in emergencies. It should be planning and identifying possible equipment shortfalls. Above all, it should be working closely with state and local communities. Instead, the command is doing very little of this core activity. — Patrick Leahy, D-Vermont

Clearly, a bias against playing a supporting role to civilian authorities has resulted in large gaps in NORTHCOM’s ability to fulfill its stated mission. The fact is, governors and their National Guard are and will continue to be our nation’s first domestic military responders. And until they and NORTHCOM can work together more seamlessly, NORTHCOM’s ability to be of assistance in homeland response will continue to face significant challenges. — Chris Shays, R-Connecticut

NORTHCOM’s duty is to provide military support to States and the Department of Homeland Security, but it hasn’t fully figured out this emergency support mission. Any crack in our emergency preparedness capability today will become a gaping hole in our catastrophic response tomorrow. — Bennie Thompson, D-Mississippi

Instead of working with the governors, the National Guard Bureau and the State Adjutants General, Northern Command has held the country’s historic first military responders at arm’s length. Northern Command needs to accept its supporting role or get out of the way. — Tom Davis, R-Virginia
 

It is a curiosity. I mean, For more than 100 years – since the end of the Civil War – deployment of the U.S. military inside the U.S. has been prohibited under The Posse Comitatus Act (the only exceptions being that the National Guard and Coast Guard are exempted, and use of the military on an emergency ad hoc basis is permitted, such as what happened after Hurricane Katrina). Unless I missed something, a major hurricane has not hit the mainland in recent days, nor has a spate of riots broken out  in our major cities. And there’s no imminent threat of an impending chemical, biological, radiological, nuclear or high explosive. Is there?  

Not that there’s a damned thing we can do about it. But I’m just saying….

Of course, it’s my prerogative to speculate on such things. After all, I am part of the tin-foil hat brigade, and have been since falling prey to tertiary Lyme Disease in 2002. Ever since, I’ve been on the vanguard with those who have long-believed in such unspeakable things as a Wall Street catastrophe, not to mention bizarre theories about bio-warfare pandemics, a second (and maybe a third) stolen election, 9-11 as a false flag operation, the Patriot Act, Dick Cheney’s oil imperialism agenda, the ascent of mercenary armies, martial law, internment camps, government-controlled media, geophysical warfare and so on — complete with all the legislative frills and scary, terrorist-bullying jargon necessary to making these newworldorder-ish things alternately possible, invisible, overt, covert and, ultimately, unstoppable.

 

Granted, a single brigade of Sea Smurfs dispatched to the blood red soils of Georgia, USA hardly seems like an overwhelming threat. But it is unprecedented, and it is also, um, un-American. So it’s only natural that I’d jump on board, in full-tin regalia, fully unsurprised — yet as surprised as the next person — by the house of cards, the McCain-Palin infomercials and the Sea Smurf Brigade. Only, unlike the steadfast tin soldier, I don’t feel so brave. And my heart’s not doing so well, either.    

 

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by Mantis Katz for the canarypapers

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Army Times: (Sept. 30, 2008)  Brigade Homeland Tour Starts October 1st

Salon.com: (Sept. 24, 2008) Why is a U.S. Army Brigade Being Assigned to the “Homeland”?

Patrick Leahy: (April 16, 2008) GAO: NORTHCOM Failing in Civil Support Mission

CQ.com: (Dec. 1, 2006)  Fine Print in Defense Bill Opens Door to Martial Law

Global Research: (October 9, 2008) FEMA Sources Confirm Coming Martial Law

The Progressive: (October 7, 2008)  Leahy Concerned About NorthCom’s New Army Unit

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Having created the conditions that produced history’s biggest bubble, America’s political leaders appear unable to grasp the magnitude of the dangers the country now faces. Mired in their rancorous culture wars and squabbling among themselves, they seem oblivious to the fact that American global leadership is fast ebbing away. A new world is coming into being almost unnoticed, where America is only one of several great powers, facing an uncertain future it can no longer shape. — From Asia Times  (October 10, 2008)  Wall Street: A New Iraq War

John McCain in Crisis Mode: Throw Hot Potatoes, Hope Someone Else Gets Burned

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Perhaps you played this party game as a child? I did. A group of kids sits in a circle, throwing a hot potato to the accompaniment of some goofy song. The loser is the one left holding the potato when the music stops. In McCain’s hands, the hot potato game has been elevated to a political strategy, — a strategy that, in times of love, war, peace and crisis has come to define the life story of the man who would be president. 

Re-playing this history might seem a low blow, a cruel rubbing of salt in old wounds. But play it, we must, because should John McCain become president, our nation would inherit this history — past, present and future. It’s only fair that we know exactly what we’re getting. Below are his 5 most infamous hot potatoes, tossed from the life story of a man whose integrity could only be descibed as small potatoes. 

 

HOT POTATO #5: McCain Suspends His Campaign, Throws a Wrench into the Economic Bailout Plan

 With his campaign going down in flames in the wake of his feeble, erratic, impulsive, irresponsible responses to the Wall Street crisis last week, followed by this week’s series of smear ads against Obama (which have been called some of the most vitriolic, slanderous political attacks in U.S. campaign history) McCain decided to suspend his campaign and postpone both this Friday’s debate with Obama, and the October 2nd debate between Biden and Palin. In his announcement, McCain said:

It is time for both parties to come together to solve this problem…. All we must do to achieve this is temporarily set politics aside…Americans across our country lament the fact that partisan divisions in Washington have prevented us from addressing our national challenges. — John McCain

These proclamations must have seemed odd to the many Democrats and Republicans on Capitol Hill, who have spent the past week doing just that: toiling together (with neither input, nor inquiry coming from McCain) as they worked to hammer this 3-page legislative proposal into a solution to this extremely complex economic crisis. It seems odder, still, when you consider McCain’s words from just one day earlier, regarding this 3-page document: “I have not had a chance to see it in writing. I have to examine it.”

Continuing his announcement yesterday, McCain invoked every patriotic hot-button sentiment he could bluster (people not being able to buy homes, life savings at stake, businesses not being able to meet payroll, devastating consequences for the economy, every corner of our country impacted and, of course, the spectre of September 11th), in an attempt to scare the hell out of Americans and rally support for his selfless gesture. He then challenged Obama to respond in kind, thereby tossing him a hot potato. All that remained was the wait, with baited breath, to see what political damage might befall the Obama campaign. McCain didn’t have to wait long. Here’s what America had to say:

It’s my belief that this is exactly the time when the American people need to hear from the person who will be the next president. It is going to be part of the president’s job to deal with more than one thing at once. It’s more important than ever to present ourselves to the American people. — Barack Obama

We haven’t heard hide nor hair of Sen. McCain in these negotiations. He has not been involved except for an occasional, unhelpful statement, sort of thrown from far away, and the last thing we need in these delicate negotiations is an injection of presidential politics. — Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-New York, chairman of the Senate Banking Committee

All of sudden, now that we are on the verge of making a deal, John McCain here drops himself in to help us make a deal…. We’re trying to rescue the economy, not the McCain campaign. — Barney Frank, chairman of the House of Representatives Financial Services Committee, expressing fear that McCain could end up slowing down work on the bill.

I’m delighted that John is expressing himself on this issue. I have heard from Obama numerous occasions these last couple days. I have never heard from John McCain on the issue… I’m just worried a little bit that sort of politicizing this problem, sort of flying in here, I’m beginning to think this is more of a rescue plan for John McCain and not a rescue plan for the economy. — Chris Dodd, chairman of the Senate Banking Committee

(On McCain’s attempt to postpone the debate) The plans for this forum have been underway for more than a year and a half. The [commission’s] mission is to provide a forum in which the American public has an opportunity to hear the leading candidates for the president of the United States debate the critical issues facing the nation. We believe the public will be well served by having all of the debates go forward as scheduled. — The Commission on Presidential Debates, the sponsors for Friday’s scheduled debate in Mississippi

Empirically, so far, the advantage is decidedly with Obama and the Dems generally. The news coverage to date suggests Obama is the ‘cooler’ under the recent pressures and seems to be more capable of handling risks without undue panic. — Ohio Wesleyan government professor and Hoover Institution fellow Carl Pinkele

Today, we see McCain grandstanding in Washington with his buddy, George Bush (who, at the behest of McCain, summoned Barack Obama off the campaign trail, to join their dog and pony show at the White House) as McCain assists Bush in his fearmongering campaign to cram this bailout plan through Congress, post haste. What a farce!

And what is McCain’s contribution to this economic crisis? Nothing more than furthering the agenda of his supposedly “suspended” campaign — all to the expense of the entire country – by schmoozing his fellow Republicans into making “Yeah Johnny!” statements to the press, in which his buddies praise McCain (while slamming Obama) for his magnanimous contributions toward solving this crisis. Is it any wonder that all of Washington, except for the staunchest of McCain sycophants, is outraged? This is the quintessential McCain, folks. This is the guy who’s been jackassing around Washington for decades now — his self-serving agenda pawned off as maverick politics. His actions today are downright treasonous.

HOT POTATO #4: McCain Throws America an Inferior Product
 

In the wake of a soaring, inspiring and substantive Democratic Convention — defined by great, issue-driven speeches by ordinary citizens and politicians of great stature, alike — McCain’s uninspired presidential campaign was floundering and in the dullest of doldrums. McCain decided to steal the fire from the Democrats.

She’s a partner and a soul-mate. — John McCain, Aug. 31, 2008, on his vice presidential pick, Sarah Palin, whom he had met only once before offering her the job.

 His ploy worked like a charm. Problem was, the desired publicity-fest proved to be a double-edge sword, as the media scrutiny quickly revealed the Achilles’ tendon in his new running mate: namely, that she is profoundly unqualified to even speak to the press, much less serve as vice-president or (gulp) president of the United States. John McCain’s choice to throw Sarah Palin into his floundering campaign continues to be viewed as a scorching indictment on his capacity for sound judgment. While the jury is still out on his choice of a running mate, it is widely agreed that tossing Sarah Palin onto the plates of Americans was, at best, a gamble that might pay off for his campaign and, at worst, the foisting onto Americans of the most dangerous candidate in the history of presidential politics.

 
HOT POTATO #3: McCain Throws His Keating Five Cohorts Under the Bus to Save His Own Ass
 
The Keating Five Scandal, in a nutshell

 

It was bad enough that McCain was involved in the the Keating Five scandal, but then he tried to pressure Congressional investigators into easing off the investigation. But, no, even that wasn’t enough. Feeling the heat from the investigation, McCain decided to save his own ass by ratting out his co-conspirators. He polished this off with a generous round of media appearances, in which he proclaimed his innocence. It worked. McCain got off with a mere slap on the wrist for his role in what’s been called, “the worst ethics scandal in the history of the Senate.” One journalist described it like this:

They say that if you put five lobsters into a pot and give them a chance to escape, none will be able to do so before you light the fire. Each time a lobster tries to climb over the top, his fellow lobsters will pull him back down. It is the way of lobsters and threatened United States senators…. Those who survive will be the sociopaths who can tell a lie with the most sincere, straight face. You [John McCain] are especially adept at this.

It would be difficult to say which is the worst indictment of John McCain’s character: that he was involved in the Keating Five, in the first place, or his reprehensible ass-saving behaviors in the wake of the scandal. It is generally agreed that the McCain campaign has gotten a free pass on Keating Five scandal, not to mention his other economic/banking faux pas . The level of disgust over this varies. As one blogger put it:

I really am amazed how one of the unspoken rules of this election has been NOT to mention John McCain’s involvement in the Keating Five scandal.

Let’s remember that this isn’t a scandal involving his home or his church. It’s a scandal involving John McCain abusing his federal office. It’s a scandal that cost the American taxpayer billions. It’s also a scandal that deals with failed banks – kind of relevant to today. How is it that John McCain’s entire record is relevant, going back to the 1960s no less, but somehow we’re supposed to skip the 1980s scandal years because that would be “rude”?

Seriously, I don’t get it. Only the Republicans could make something John McCain did in office, and was chastised for officially on the Senate floor, and turn it into something “personal’ and off-limits, like it’s his daughter or his mistress. No, it’s his job. And he screwed up, wilfully. And it’s relevant to the very economic crisis we’re discussing today. It’s also relevant to any discussion of his honor.

 

HOT POTATO #2: John McCain throws his own wife under the bus after she suffers a disfiguring accident

To his credit, John McCain has at least acknowledged sole blame for abandoning his first wife in the wake of her tragic auto accident that left the former swimsuit model disfigured and crippled. It goes without saying that this is a highly personal matter, the details of which are no one’s business but theirs. However, one can not divorce from John McCain’s candidacy the character of a man who showed such flimsy loyalty for the woman who stood by his side throughout his imprisonment in Hanoi — a man who would abandon the mother of his three children in the wake of her horrible accident, only so he could flit about with the beautiful people and cheat on his wife for several years before, ultimately, replacing her with a beautiful, young undamaged model. 

 
HOT POTATO #1: John McCain throws his fellow POWs as well as his country under the bus as he sings like a canary (and then some) for the enemy
 

Out of respect for others who have, unlike myself, experienced the unimaginable tortures suffered by prisoners of war, I won’t belabor this point. I will only offer a few examples of the documentswords, articles and videos of others, who feel that John McCain behaved dishonorably both during and after the war. During his captivity, McCain provided military information far beyond the Code of Conduct – and far beyond that which other POWs divulged, while undergoing extreme torture themselves. After the war, McCain has fought to keep this information from becoming public, by stonewalling efforts by families of MIAs to declassify documents. While these documents could help these families discover the whereabout of their loved ones, these documents also contain damning evidence about John McCain’s behavior during captivity.

As with McCain’s behavior with his wife (detailed in #2 above) it tells something of a man’s character that, having been through this experience, he would not only emerge less-than-truthful about the particulars of his history, but would use this falsified history to pander political points in his campaign. The real crime, however, is his disregard for the families of MIAs, as he fought their efforts to possibly discover the whereabouts of their loved ones (dead or alive?) who, unlike McCain, never returned home from war.

McCain’s disregard for veterans has been ongoing and continues today, in his lack of support on Capitol Hill for the for veterans’ issues and benefits, as seen in the clip from last spring’s film, “Why Won’t McCain Sign the GI Bill?”

 
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by Mantis Katz for the canarypapers

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postscript:
Various theories have been proposed on the origin of the game “hot potato.” One generally accepted theory is that the first “hot potato” was, in fact, the warm contents of a freshly soiled diaper. The concept of a game arose from the good-humored arguments over who happened to be holding the baby upon the arrival of said-poop. This person became, by default, the designated diaper changer: the “loser.” Enough said. 

 

 

Sleeping Overtime: The Media’s Sultry Love Affair with McCain, Rove, Palin & Co.

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On a related note: Canarypapers hits the big time! We are linked, in passing, on the National Journal’s The Hotline/Blogometer page, via the word “here.” Our “here” was the first in a series of 3 illuminated “here” links contained within an excerpt from the conservative blog, Townhall, as they cited examples of the “lefty blogosphere.” We now understand how Navin must have felt, seeing his name in the phone book — in print for the first time! We have arrived. Our bleeding hearts runneth over. 

 

Our bleeding hearts are also beginning to wonder: Now that the media are back in bed with McCain — having elected to prostitute their integrity and show Sarah Palin the proper “deference” by quietly broadcasting her lies without question — how can McCain, Palin, Rove & Co. go about silencing the “lefty blogosphere”? Because, damn it all, we’re still telling the truth. Calling us the “lefty blogosphere” isn’t nearly strong enough to goad us into silence, and we don’t have corporate sponsors to blackmail us into playing step-and-fetch for the Republicans. Clearly, something needs to be done.

I have a suggestion, one that worked well for Bush, Cheney, Rove & Co. Discredit us. Cast us into the minions of the conspiracy theorists. It’s a clever tactic, one that managed to silence a myriad of uncomfortable truths — which the media have abrogated their duty to report over the past 8 years — with many of these uncomfortable truths spawned from the so-called war on terror: torture, illegal detainment, the Military Commissions Act, the Iraq War, 9-11, martial law, unitary executive branch, impeachment hearings, and so on and on and on. (It’d take me the rest of the day, just to list them all). This will work, trust me: Make “lefty blogosphere” synonymous with “conspiracy theorists” and you will  have silenced one of the largest voices of truth in this country. After all, who wants to be accused of wearing a tin foil hat? Could I see a show of hands?

The press loves McCain. We’re his base.Chris Matthews

Let me be the first to commend the McCain team for seducing the media back into bed, proving that sleaze always trumps integrity. I listened with interest to the media’s post-RNC Convention umbrage, as they found themselves branded with the dreaded ‘elitist liberal media’ label, and being accused of ‘biased, sexist and generally unfair coverage’ of Sarah Palin. And, as if that weren’t bad enough, McCain’s superindendent of smear, Steve Schmidt, went and accused journalists of being ‘on a mission to destroy” Sarah with “a new level of viciousness” — the double whammy arriving when campaign manager Rick Davis announced that, until the media showed a willingness to treat Palin “with some level of respect and deference,” she would not be meeting with reporters. 

This had to smart, especially considering that — just four years ago to the day — the darling’s media (Brokaw, Jennings, Schieffer, Dowd, & Russert) were raising glasses with John & Cindy in a double-celebration over McCain’s birthday and George W. Bush’s second coming at the RNC convention. This had to smart, being in the doghouse after such a long romance with McCain, a relationship plainly explained just last week by Bloomberg News’ Albert R. Hunt: “Probably no one in American politics over the last 20 years has had a closer relationship with the national press than John McCain.” This had to smart, knowing that — even as the McCain camp’s accusations against them were lies — the media were faced with a tough choice: keep doing what they’ve been doing for the past 8 years, or grow a spine.  

There was some evidence, at first, that this vertebral vestige of spine was going to reappear, in Cheshire Cat fashion, filling out the empty spaces around the mad grin. The talking heads began talking in earnest, in unison — their outrage palpable. The media almost apologized and almost acknowledged their culpability for complying overlong with Bush-Cheney’s post-9-11 gag order, and for marching lockstep in complicity with Bush-Cheney’s saber-rattling and lies during the lead-up to the Iraq war, and for every other journalistic integrity they’ve abrogated since. “Not again!” the media railed. “Not this time around!” they promised us. We almost believed them, when they promised to treat Sarah Palin the same way they’d treat any political candidate. (Truthfully — and I can now say this out loud — I didn’t believe them. Not one bit. But, still, I chided myself for being so cynical, for thinking, in so many words, “Spare me the phony outrage. Spare me the phony talk about change.”)

Turns out, my cynicism wasn’t wasted. I could cite myriad examples, but I’ll settle on just one. Mid-last week, the McCain, Palin & Rove team concocted a particularly reprehensible lie, rolling it out in a campaign ad, that claimed Obama’s “one accomplishment” was a bill to teach sex ed to kindergartners. The stinger headline read: “Learning about sex before learning to read?”

A responsible media would have reported: “New McCain ad is a blatant lie.” Instead, the media flashed such cloying headlines as “Sex ed for tots?” while giving barely a cursory nod to the truth — the truth being that sex-ed legislation for grades K-12 already existed in Illinois law. The truth being that the bill Obama supported (but didn’t author) gave, first and foremost, parents the right to refuse any and all sex education for their own children. The truth being that the focus of the bill was toward “age-appropriate” sex education, focused on STD and pregnancy prevention for older students, and information to teach all ages, including kindergartners, how to recognize inappropriate behaviors — the goal being to protect children from sexual predators. Few could argue that pedophilia is a sick and increasing presence in our society, and that too many children are falling prey to it.  

One would think that — knowing all too well how many children are falling into the clever traps laid by pedophiles, with some children being lured to their deaths — a responsible media might have taken up the gauntlet and actually discussed the issue of sexual predators of children, and of the measures being taken to protect these children. At the very least, the media could have made lemonade from lemons, using McCain’s lies to open a sorely-needed dialogue about the increase of pedophilia into mainstream sexual appetites of more and more Americans: “What is it about our culture that has caused a sick increase in child predators?” One would think.

Or perhaps not. The media — after subjecting the American public to an 8-year, 24/7 three-ring paparazzi popfest, predominately peopled with the likes of Anna Nicole Smith, Brittney Spears and Paris Hilton — seems to have lost sight of the forest, for the trees. Their transition from pop-star sleazefest into the 2008 election coverage was seamless, marked by a dearth of substantive coverage of the issues, and a proponderance of pablum. This brand of coverage has so blurred the distinctions between statured leaders and pop icons, that Americans seem at a loss to tell the difference between the two — and, worse, to even care that there should be a difference.

It vanished quite slowly, beginning with the end of the tail, and ending with the grin, which remained some time after the rest of it had gone.  — Lewis Carroll, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland

I could explain the difference to them in 10 words or less (leaders lead; pop icons entertain), but — coming from the blogosphere — my words carry little weight, if any. The banner of credibility is carried by the corporate media, which handsomely pays people called ‘journalists,’ whose job is, by definition, to gather and analyze information and report it to the public. They carry this banner, despite that they have become little more than a mouthpiece for the Republican agenda (if you doubt me, simply turn on the news, any time, any day, except during MSNBC’s evening line-up, and you will see nothing but paparazzi-Palin at her best, peppered here and there with a dash McCain). Why is this? Because the media is a business, not a public service. Their raison d’etre is profit.

Here, the lefty blogosphere has filled a huge gap — in Cheshire cat fashion — as more and more, bloggers are doing the actual work of journalists, gathering and analyzing information, citing sources, and reporting it to the public. All for free. All in the interest of 12-stepping the credulous public away from their dysfunctional relationship with a national media that long ago abrogated its duty to be the voice of integrity and truth. In the old days, this brand of national media broadcasting might have been called by its proper name: libel. In these new, enlightened times, it goes by the name of truth. People believe the media, even as they’ve witnessed the media betray this trust over and over and over during the past 8 years.

Watch and see: In the coming weeks, we’re going to see an awful lot of deference shown to Sarah Palin and team McCain. We’re already seeing it, as the media have begun flapping their hands like trained seals, like anxious parents at a school play, over Sarah’s ability to memorize talking points. They won’t dare question her ability to actually comprehend those talking points. Nor will they question or verify the sources of the lies and disinformation given to them by McCain, Palin, Rove & Co.  The media will simply keep repeating them, without question. In bedding down with McCain, Palin, Rove & Co, the the media may very well be complicitious in installing into the White House the most profoundly unqualified and quite potentially dangerous candidate that’s ever run for high office. The good news is, no one that matters cares.

Written by canarypapers

September 16, 2008 at 10:22 am