Saturday, December 24, 2005


This page is loaded with pictures and hence takes a long time to load. It is certainly a "point of view" blog. Not really my thing but the pictures are often fun.

Good place for political news.

I guess we scared them off in New Mexico.

The Bible on the web.

Don't worry, be happy! Merry Christmas everybody!

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Coffee Table

Ah, come on. Surely you've got something to say.

It's The Liberal Media......

.........We have PROOF and everything!!!!!

While the editorial page of The Wall Street Journal is conservative, the newspaper's news pages are liberal, even more liberal than The New York Times. The Drudge Report may have a right-wing reputation, but it leans left. Coverage by public television and radio is conservative compared to the rest of the mainstream media. Meanwhile, almost all major media outlets tilt to the left.

WOW! Who woulda ever thunk it! I guess I can't believe my own eyes and ears after all. I mean they did a study and everything.

Too bad that most news organizations that innocently pick up this story will be unaware of its author's extraordinary biases.
The methodology of the paper is bizarre to say the least. The paper tries to measure liberal or conservative leanings of a news organization by measuring how many times they quote organizations that are deemed liberal or conservative. To create that correlation, the authors count the number of times an organization is quoted approvingly by members of Congress. They then take the ADA rating ("liberalness") score of those members of Congress, assign those scores to the groups in question, and conclude that the more often a news organization quotes a group the more it must approve of that group.
So, if Ted Kennedy (the most liberal member of the Senate according to the ADA) approvingly cites the NAACP and the New York Times regularly quotes the NAACP, then the New York Times is as liberal as Ted Kennedy.

I could spend hours debunking this flawed technique. But let's not get bogged down in details. This is a classic "guilt by association" technique. ..... So let's try the same technique on Professor Groseclose. According to the professor's curriculum vita, he's received the following "honors and fellowships":

* Hoover National Fellow* Olin Faculty Fellow* Lambe Fellow, Institute for Humane Studies* Dissertation Fellow, Center for the Study of Public Choice, George Mason University
Hmmm. Olin Faculty Fellow? That's funded by the (now-defunct) John M. Olin Foundation, Inc.

The New York-based John M. Olin Foundation, which grew out of a family manufacturing business (chemical and munitions), funds right-wing think tanks like the American Enterprise Institute, the Heritage Foundation, the Manhattan Institute for Public Policy Research, and the Hoover Institute of War, Revolution and Peace. It also gives large sums of money to promote conservative programs in the country's most prestigious colleges and universities.

Professor Groseclose has been accepting grants exclusively from far-right foundations for more than a decade. His work is backed by organizations that are also backing the most extreme-right organizations on his list (the number in parens represents the paper's ADA rating of each group, on a scale of 1 to 100, where lower is more conservative: the Cato Institute (36.3), the Heritage Foundation (20.0), American Enterprise Institute (36.6), the Manhattan Institute (32.0).Using the same "guilt by association" techniques that the professor uses in his paper, I conclude that he is far from unbiased. In fact, taking the average ADA score of the four groups in the previous paragraphs, which are all supported by the same foundations that have funded the professor in his research, results in a score that ranks the professor as more conservative than any of the news outfits in his rankings. More than the Drudge Report, more than Fox News' Special Report with Brit Hume, more even than the Washington Times.

Co-author Jeffrey Milyo was a Salvatori fellow for the ultra-right-wing (by their paper's own numbers!) Heritage Foundation. He and Groseclose wrote their first article together in 1996 for the far-right scandal sheet The American Spectator.

Plus often times on liberal or conservative media an attribution or reference is made just to rip it to shreds. The exact opposite of the accurate result they are attempting to obtain. Which I would guess is the reason it looks the way it does. This is certainly not the survey that will convince me.

Sunday, December 18, 2005

Sunday Editorial

Can We Save Our Republic

I've been watching the news all afternoon especially in re the NSA deal. I'm going to do something I rarely do on this blog. I'm going to editorialize. No links, no "proof". Just the facts as I see them. When one does that the right will gleefully jump and say..that's the problem with libs all emotion. You bet I'm emotional!!! I'm fighting mad! The people remaining that would support this travesty are just plain robots. I suggest that instead of debating you go back to your 11th grade civics class and refresh yourself on the constitution, what our country was founded on and what our troops are suppose to be dying for.
First let's look at the fearmongering on terrorism because that is the crux of all these violations.
Now I know many have never given this consideration before but just how do the terrorists take over and destroy our way of life? We know there is no way they can beat us militarily. These are guys using donkey carts and rpgs. Hell even the planes they flew into the twin towers weren't theirs. This is the freakin juggernaut that makes us give up our civil liberties?! The people that cost 300 billion to fight!? Isn't there a more effective way to do this? We felled the Soviet Union by basically making them go broke. This is something we might all want to keep in mind.

Any one who disagrees with the pResidents plan and methods is cast as "weak on terror". Blatant spin. Because someone feels the path is not defeating terrorism but adding to it, that there is a better more cost effective way to do this is not "weak on terror", but smart. Weak on terror translation to real speak: In favor of winning. This whole deal is benched on the idea that you can use guilt and fear to push people into neocon alignment. .........Bite me!
This was known as the land of the free and the home of the brave. The brave ones are in Iraq fighting. The right wing 101st fighting keyboarders just ooze fear out of the very fiber of their being. They are so fearful that they are willing to give up there constitutional liberties...aka freedom. As they would say it "they hate the constitution" . They apparently want it to be the land of the fearful and the home of the police state. Do you believe freedom is free? We ALL must support it, not just our soldiers. If not violating the constitution leaves us open to an attack, I say so be it. It's called being brave enough to live the principals you propose to support. Regardless, I think there are things that can be done to keep us far safer than the methods currently being employed. I don't want the terrorists to win. I want them to lose and hence my opposition to the pResidents plans that make our constitution weaker and usurp our authority in on the world stage.

Lots of apologists for the President asking the NSA to spy on Americans. The first one is the fear mongering one. Ohhh this will make us less safe. Which means I am suppose to believe that the wily juggernaut terrorists don't know that wiretaps can be provided through judical means. As a matter of fact 99% of requests in the "secret" NSA court were granted. If this was really keeping us safer why did they go around the "secret" court and the law of the people.
He's not making me safer by coming up with a "secret" law that he couldn't even tell the "secret" court about. Sorry but in a democracy you don't make up your own rules. That's an aristocracy or a kleptocracy.
The next apologist says "well he told some in congress and they didn't say anything." Ok, let's imagine they had. They'd be beat in the same fashion as Joe Wilson, Richard Clarke, Paul O neil et al. Aiding the terrorists blah blah blah. Notice it DID get out..somebody was very uncomfortable with it, thank God. The paper even held the story for a year! Nancy Pelosi said she strongly objected every time. This was a Bush plan. Not a plan of the American government. That is why it's wrong. If congress would have been included in the making of the law and public debate had been done then it would be acceptable. Of course if there are any Real Americans left it would have never passed. The neocons knew it too and hence the Bush plan.
Next apologist says it was only used on the bad guys. Then why not follow the law? Why leave this no oversight open to any one cabal? They are all wildly weak arguments...that's what happens when you are (W)rong.
We could do a lot of things to protect Americans. We could let the police stand outside the bar and arrest drunk drivers. We could make everyone wear a helmet in a car. We could make smoking and drinking totally illegal. We could make cars that wouldn't go over 70 and make a law that none could own one one that would go faster. We could bar anyone who had a violent arrest from owning or possessing a gun. How about another law to sneek and peek into their house to see if they have one....oh I forgot, that part of the law is already in place. This "we are just protecting Americans" is blahooey. If that is what you are doing...Please...Quit it already!!! I'm not too comfortable with your "protection". I feel LESS protected by your "protection".

A final note on the defeat of the Patriot act. The "protectors of freedom" will still have the patriot act authority to continue investigations that have been started/are in progress. Since all the large terrorist groups , al queda, hamas et al are already being investigated, in reality it will not harm the war on terror and sadly may not make much difference for freedom loving Americans. They will still be subject to the police state. They just have to say you are a suspect under one of their cases. Like the Quakers being under investigation for opposing the war. They still have files in the Pentagon on freedom loving, God loving Americans. Even though they have determined there is not a terrorist among them...duh.
Next time the neocons talk about your war on terror check their statements for fearmongering or guilt tripping...don't let the bastards intimidate you. Free America!