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What Else Is In Scott's Head?

The blog site for writer Scott C. Smith. Some observations on the world we live in and life in general. And maybe some politics.

Saturday, July 31, 2004

Scott Talks Civics

In the upcoming weeks, the Bush administration plans on slamming John Kerry's voting record in the Senate. Bush and other members of his campaign team will make oblique references to Kerry's record, using language like "John Kerry voted X numbers of times against (subject)." Something like, "John Kerry voted 18 times against giving the military a pay raise." What the Bush campaign is counting on is American ignorance of the entire legistlative process. To say that John Kerry voted against a military pay raise isn't necessarily accurate; it may be the end result of the vote. I would guess most people imagine that in Congress a bill is introduced (2004 military pay raise) and that the members of Congress vote on this single issue. They don't. The process for getting a bill to a vote is a lengthy one, and along the way something simple becomes something complicated. Before I get to the serious information, I want to remind everyone of what they should remember from Saturday mornings spent watching cartoons as kids:

I'm just a bill
Yes, I'm only a bill
And I'm sitting here on Capitol Hill
Well, it's a long, long journey
To the capital city
It's a long, long wait
While I'm sitting in committee
But I know I'll be a law some day
At least I hope and pray that I will
But today I am still just a bill.

Okay, the process is a bit more complicated, but still, Schoolhouse Rock did introduce the basics. Damn liberal television! Wanting kids to learn shit.

Personally, I like the Simpsons version better:

I'm an amendment-to-be
yes an amendment-to-be,
And I'm hoping that they'll ratify me.
There's a lot of flag-burners
Who have got too much freedom
I want to make it legal
For policemen to beat'em.
'Cause there's limits to our liberties
At least I hope and pray that there are
'Cause those liberal freaks go too far.


As a service to my readers -- and I'm assuming the majority of you already know this information (the right-wingers will be ignorant of the legislative process, as expected, since Sean Hannity doesn't go into that kind of detail), a brief overview of how a bill becomes law. I'll provide a link at the end to the detailed information.

-- Legislation is Introduced - Any member of the House or Senate can introduce a piece of legislation.
-- The bill is referred to the appropriate committee by the Speaker of the House or the presiding officer in the Senate.
-- The committee debates the merits of the bill, holds hearings, hears from subcommittees, and eventually the full committee votes.
-- The bill is further debated, marked-up with revisions and additions, changed, replaced or altered, depending on what action is taken (such as the addition of amendments).
-- Eventually the bill is added to the House Calendar or the Senate Legislative Calendar.
-- Congress debates the bill.
-- The bill will eventually reach the President, who can veto the bill or pass it.
-- Once the President signs off, the bill becomes law.

Now, that's a very basic version of what happens. It's still very complicated, and it's not a matter of Senators voting on one provision, such as a pay raise for the military.

You can click here to go to Project Vote Smart and read about the process in detail.

Remember, knowledge is power. If you know any right-wingers and they want to bring up Kerry's voting record, ask for specifics: when was the vote? What bill #? What amendments were added? Your right-wing "friend" will not know, of course, and they'll sputter impotently before saying that John Kerry is the most "liberal" member of the Senate, or some bullshit.

If you're really motivated, you can look up the actual votes from the Senate's web site. For fun, find the instances where Republicans also voted the same way Kerry did, and throw that in your right-wing friend's face.

Don't worry, I'll get back to my usual anti-American Bush-bashing soon.

Friday, July 30, 2004

The Coulter Column Controversy

There was some controversy earlier in the week, when USA Today decided it wasn't going to run a column by Ann Coulter. The newspaper had asked Coulter for a column at the start of the Democratic convention, and the column she wrote was, well, a piece of human excrement. Okay, it was stupid.

As is the standard for right-wing "news," Matt Drudge "broke" the story with the following breathless "prose":

USA TODAY SPIKES ANN COULTER COLUMN AT CONVENTION
USA Today editors have spiked a daily convention column they commissioned from conservative controversialist Ann Coulter, the DRUDGE REPORT has learned.

Coulter filed her first report from Boston Sunday night, only to be told hours later that editors found it "unusable" and "not funny."

"Apparently no one at USA TODAY had ever read Ann Coulter before!" Coulter, who has sold nearly a million copies of her various works and his written a syndicated column for five years, said from Boston.

(Here's a link to Coulter's "spiked" column, which isn't very good, nor funny).

On cue, conservatives everywhere started crying "censorship!"

Before I move on, I'd like to make a point: when I wrote a column about efforts to censor Michael Moore, right-wing reaction was along the lines of "It's not censorship, you fucking idiot, censorship applies only to the government!" Okay.

A little over a week ago a poll was taken by the Continental newspaper chain to drop Gary Trudeau's comic strip Doonesbury from some of its papers. That decision was of course defended by conservatives.

Ah, now the hypocrisy comes to light. So it's not okay for USA Today to "spike" the Coulter column, but it's okay for newspaper to not run Doonesbury? That's known as "conservative logic."

Not that I expect consistent, logical reasoning from conservatives.




Thursday, July 29, 2004

Unfair and Biased: Coming Soon

I'm working on the new column, which will be an analysis of Fox News' coverage of the Democratic National Convention.  The fun part now is getting transcripts...but once I have those I'll show just how biased Fox News is.  When you ridicule the people involved in something you're covering, well, I think that demonstrates bias, don't you?  The Fox News crew covering the convention have not exactly displayed "fair and balanced" reporting of the convention. 

Get Outfoxed!  Now!

I've mentioned Outfoxed before.  It's the new documentary by Robert Greenwald that takes a look at the Fox News machine to show just how unfair and biased they are.  There are plenty of interviews with former Fox News producers and contributors, and they're interesting to watch, but the footage from Fox News is the star of the show.  Seen in this context it is so obvious that Fox News is anything but "fair and balanced."

Take Carl Cameron, the chief political correspondent for Fox News.  Outfoxed shows footage of Cameron with George W. Bush during the 2000 presidential race.  The two are caught in conversation by a live satellite feed, chatting away.  It turns out that Cameron's wife was working on Bush's campaign.  Which is a very clear conflict of interest.  But Fox News apparently didn't see it that way.

Cameron has responded to this footage from Outfoxed as being taken "out of context."  I'm not sure how it's out of context when Cameron and Bush are talking about Cameron's wife working on Bush's campaign, but that's the standard Fox News spin.  Robert Greenwald has released the entire, unedited footage of the pre-interview.  You can catch it here.  You'll need the latest version of Quicktime to watch it.

One final bit of business:  the Matt Drudge "exclusive" report (gossip) that, while in Vietnam, John Kerry re-enacted combat scenes for filming.  This has been debunked by the group Media Matters for America.  You can read the story here.

The troubling aspect of Drudge's internet gossip is that it's picked up by the legitimate media and reported as fact.  Why anyone would take a Drudge "exclusive" as being news shows just how lazy the media is.  This isn't the first time that Drudge gossip was passed off as news.  On May 31, on MSNBC's Scarborough Country, guest host Pat Buchanan passed off Drudge gossip that Kerry's wife Teresa had flown a plane 1300 miles to get John Kerry a haircut. 

The moral of the story is that Matt Drudge is an unethical liar.  He is NOT a journalist.  A real journalist verifies the facts of a story before reporting it.  Drudge does not.  And people continue to use him as a source.  Why?  Who knows.  I don't.



Tuesday, July 27, 2004

Fair and Balanced Coverage of the Convention

Before I start, my latest column is up at Smirking Chimp.  It's about Mansoor Ijaz, the man who claims to have brokered a deal to have Osama Bin Laden transferred to the United States from Sudan, as Sean Hannity puts it, "on a silver platter."  The 9/11 Commission's final report  says no offer was ever made by Sudan as Ijaz has claimed, and in fact Ijaz himself is not even mentioned in the report, he's only an end note.  I'm not sure the facts will stop Sean Hannity from repeating his mantra that Bill Clinton was offered Osama Bin Laden "on a silver platter."

Now, on to the Democratic National Convention.  If you want to see just how biased and to the right Fox News is, watch their coverage of the convention.  After a few minutes you'll realize that the Fox people do not want to be there.  And as they chatter and offer "analysis" they'll also throw in jabs against John Kerry, John Edwards, Bill Clinton, Hillary Clinton, Jimmy Carter, and all of the other speakers at the convention.  For instance, last night Brit Hume showed photographs of John Kerry at Cape Canaveral where Kerry had donned attire worn by some workers there.  And Hume's panel had a good chuckle over those photographs.  Why were they shown?  To make John Kerry look stupid.  Remember the infamous photograph of Michael Dukakis in a tank from the '88 campaign?  Same idea.

Also, the Fox people have been using the phrase "red meat," which I guess was probably suggested by the GOP or in one of the famous Fox News memos.  I didn't catch the context but it seemed to have something to do with attacks against George W. Bush.  Perhaps more informed viewers can let me know what the Fox team means when it makes a reference to "red meat."

Another thing to watch for in Fox's coverage are the reaction shots to people in the audience.  This will happen during a speech.  Now, count the number of times the reaction shot is of a smartly dressed man or woman, and count the number of times the reaction shot is of someone dressed funny, or wearing a goofy hat.  It will not take long to see that the reaction shots of the people in goofy hats outnumbers the shots of "normal" looking folks in suits. 

The coverage of the convention by Fox is completely biased.  They report, and they decide.

Sunday, July 25, 2004

Okay, I will Open The Hate Mail Bag

I decided to go ahead and display the latest hate mail so that I could address the issues raised in it.  After all, if my readers have concerns about the content here, I don't want to seem like I don't care

I'll put each point in italics and then add my comments.

Anyone who "asks" that readers send him "hate mail" is obviously a glutton for punishment or just plain demented. It is time to face a few facts here:

Or, the reason could be something as simple as having fodder to ridicule.

1. Despite what you claim, you are NOT a "journalist. Legitimate journalists do not conduct themselves like complete assholes on the internet as you do. You are just one of millions of "bloggers' world-wide who actually think their ridiculous postings mean anything.

So why read what I write?  If my "ridiculous postings" do not mean anything, why are you wasting your time with it? 

As far as my claiming to be a journalist...well, I've mentioned that I had been a military journalist, and right now I refer to myself as a columnist.  The fact that my columns have been read by thousands of people would seem to indicate that, aside from you, everyone else takes my writing seriously.

2. You are a consumate (sic) liar. I have perused many of your so-called "writings" and find them frought (sic) with inaccuracies, innuendo, and outright untruths.
 
Fine, prove it.  Name the columns, the errors in fact, and your source for the correct data, and I'll make the correction.  Although, if I were you, I'd make sure that your e-mail wasn't "frought" with typos and spelling errors before scolding me for problems with my own writing.  It'll help with your credibility.

3. You are a hate monger who viciously attacks those who disagree with you. Rather than stand and debate, you cut and run at every opportunity, much like the little boy that sticks his tongue out at an adult and quickly runs away.

Oh, that makes perfect sense.  You send me an e-mail, attack me, and then rather than stand and debate, you hide behind an anonymous re-mailing service, so I have no opportunity to respond directly.  There goes what's left of any credibility you might of had.

4. Your usenet antics preceed (sic) you.  Any prosepective (sic) employer who gets a hold of your Usenet nonsense will dismiss your writings in quick order.  I must admit, however, I do like the "dancing" photo of you on display at one of those conservative message boards.  It fits your writing style - always dancing around the issues.  You are indeed Scott, one big loser. So there you go, your hate mail for today.

#4 makes no sense at all.  Hey, slappy, you do realize that there is a difference in what I might post to message boards or Usenet, and what I write in my columns?  In any event, I hope you're not angling for a career in writing, because you need some experience in proofreading.

I present this as an example of a poorly-written piece of hate mail.  That's not an example to emulate, especially using anonymous e-mail services.  If you're going to write to me, have the guts to do so with a real e-mail address.  That way, I can respond directly.  It's how mature adults handle things.

I'll open the hate mail bag again soon...keep those letters coming!



Friday, July 23, 2004

How to have your hate mail published

I'm not going to publish hate mail sent by cowards using anonymous re-mailing services.  Sorry.  Either deal with me using a real e-mail address or don't bother.

I did receive some mail today, and while I'm not going to post it, there is a paragraph that is amusing:

3. You are a hate monger who viciously attacks those who disagree with you.  Rather than stand and debate, you cut and run at every opportunity, much like the little boy that sticks his tongue out at an adult and quickly runs away.
 
Let's look at this paragraph carefully.  The writer is saying that, after I attack someone who disagrees with me, instead of debating the person, I cut and run "like the little boy that sticks his tongue out at an adult and quickly runs away."

This person attacked me using an anonymous re-mailing service, which means no debate is possible.  So this idiot is doing the very thing he accuses me of.  Which means the e-mailer is really stupid.  What a surprise.

The 9/11 Commission Report

The 9/11 Commission's final report is out, and is worth a read as it dispels some of the right-wing lies and misinformation about the Clinton Administration's handling of terrorism.  You can download the report from the 9/11 Commission web site.

Let's examine some of the claims that have been made about the Clinton Administration, and what the report says.

Claim #1: Bill Clinton was offered Bin Ladin on a "silver platter" by the Sudanese government, and refused him.

This claim has been made by people like Sean Hannity many, many times.  The supposed arrangement was brokered by Mansoor Ijaz, who was working as a freelance diplomat.  What does the 9/11 Commission Report have to say about this?

From page 110:
Sudan's minister of defense, Faith Erwa, has claimed that Sudan had offered to hand over Bin Laden to the United States.  The Commission has found no credible evidence that this was so.  U.S. Ambassador Timothy Carney had instructions only to push the Sudanese to expel Bin Ladin.  Ambassador Carney had no legal basis to ask for more from the Sudanese since, at the time, there was no indictment outstanding.

Mansoor Ijaz isn't even mentioned in the report.  I wonder why?

Claim #2: The Clinton Administration took no actions against Bin Ladin.
Not so.  Pages 115-117 describe how, in 1998, following the embassy bombings in Africa, a plan was drafted to attack Bin Ladin in Afghanistan.

Debate about what to do settled on one option: Tomahawk cruise missiles...by the early hours of the morning of August 20, President Clinton and all his principal advisors had agreed to strike Bin Ladin camps in Afghanistan near Khowst, as well as hitting al Shifa...later on August 20, Navy vessels in the Arabian sea fired their cruise missiles.  Though most of them hit their intended targets, neither Bin Ladin nor any other terrorist leaders were killed...the strikes...probably missed Bin Ladin by a few hours.
 
So the Clinton administration had a plan in place to take out Bin Ladin, and we attacked where we thought Bin Ladin would be.  Which clearly contradicts the right-wing claims that Clinton did nothing about Bin Ladin.  Contrary to those claims, the Clinton administration was heavily involved in attempts to capture Bin Ladin.  Chapter 4 of the report, Responses to Al Qaeda's Initial Assaults, highlights the numerous efforts to capture Bin Ladin.  The Clinton Administration was not "asleep at the wheel" in its efforts.

Tomorrow: The Clinton Administration is "obsessed" with capturing Bin Ladin.

Thursday, July 22, 2004

I Was Interviewed About my Drudge Column!

As a writer of political columns, I'm never sure what kind of response the column will generate, and it's always interesting to read through the e-mail, especially when it's e-mail highly critical of me, or insulting.  I've put this message out before, but feel free to drop me a line -- especially if you hate what I write and what I stand for.  I need more hate mail!  Come on, folks, keep it coming.  Send in that hate mail!

Yesterday, an e-mail came in from a writer in the U.K., who wanted to interview me about my Drudge column.  We exchanged e-mail where I answered the questions, and now that story is out.  The reporter, Jemima Kiss, writes for a web site called "dot Journalism," and is not only a portal for U.K. based writers to find jobs in the media, but also a site with original news and features.  You can read Jemima's story here.

With the explosion in popularity of blogs, the World Wide Web is fast becoming an alternative news source.  Lots of writers are putting in many hours working on their stories and entries for blogs, and lots do not get paid for their efforts, but have a commitment to providing that alternative voice to the mainstream media.

   

 




Wednesday, July 21, 2004

Outfoxed: Rupert Murdoch's War On Journalism

I think it's safe to say that most viewers of Fox News realize the network has a conservative bias.  There's nothing wrong with that, of course, but Fox News has created an image of itself for the world, branding "fair and balanced" into the public's consciousness.  In Outfoxed: Rupert Murdoch's War on Journalism, director Robert Greenwald shows us the real Fox News, an organization that is not so much concerned with journalism, but rather with promoting a thinly-veiled conservative agenda. 

Greenwald worked in secrecy on the project, worried that word would get to Rupert Murdoch and Murdoch's team of lawyers.  The end result exposes Fox News to the world and shows us exactly how management goes about the task of disseminating a style of reporting friendly to Republicans and conservatives, and indifferent to hostile towards Democrats and liberals.

Greenwald interviews a number of former Fox News contributors, analysts and producers, as well as people like Walter Cronkite, Al Franken, and Vermont Congressman Bernie Sanders,  to give us the real behind-the-scenes look at the "we report, you decide" network.  And while some critics have panned the documentary for not presenting an opposing point of view, I don't see that as an issue.  What would Sean Hannity, Bill O'Reilly, and Brit Hume say, anyway?  Obviously they'd deny that Fox News had any kind of bias.

Outfoxed is at its most effective when it shows the tricks and techniques Fox News uses to set its agenda.  Management would set the tone of the working day via a memorandum with instructions/suggestions on what tone or angle the network would take on a particular day or issue.  A good collection of these memos can be found at Wonkette.com.  Here's an example from Fox News chief John Moody on March 12, 2004:

Spain's neighbor, the ever-superior France, had its own spate of railway terrorist warnings last week, though it's not clear that those were in any way related to the Madrid bombings.

The President is on the stump, this time for women's rights. His remarks may be worth dipping into and then getting out.

John Kerry may wish he'd taken off his microphone before trashing the GOP. Though he insists he meant republican "attack squads," his coarse description of his opponents has cast a lurid glow over the campaign.

Or this gem from March 23, 2004:

The so-called 9/11 commission has already been meeting. In fact, this is the eighth session. The fact that former Clinton and both former and current Bush administration officials are testifying gives it a certain tension, but this is not "what did he know and when did he know it" stuff. Do not turn this into Watergate. Remember the fleeting sense of national unity that emerged from this tragedy. Let's not desecrate that.

With the tone for the day set, Greenwald shows us many examples of how Fox on-air talent will take a particular phrase or idea and run with it.  To see clip after clip of this practice in action in both astonishing and amusing.  For instance, when John Kerry was called a flip-flopper by the Republican National Committee, (and in a March 16 memo from John Moody) that phrase made its way into many Fox broadcasts.

We see other examples of bias: Sean Hannity on-air with the countdown for the presidential election: "224 days until George W. Bush is re-elected."  And Hannity says this over and over and over.  "181 days until the re-election of George Bush."  And so on.

Rupert Murdoch's vast media empire is shown, and it is startling to see the extent of Murdoch's holdings, from newspapers, television, radio and film.  Murdoch is discussed briefly in Outfoxed.  One of the most telling moments of Outfoxed is footage of Murdoch testifying to the FCC.  Murdoch is asked by someone off-camera who Fox's on-air liberals were.  "Alan Colmes," Murdoch says quickly.  After a pause he then says "Greta Van Susteren," but those are the only two names he can come up with.

Sure, liberals share air-time with conservatives, but a Fox liberal is someone who basically agrees with the conservative spin, such as Susan Estritch and, yes, Alan Colmes.  The liberals that disagree strongly with the conservative host on shows like Hannity and Colmes are frequently yelled at, and over, to the point that the disagreeing liberal has his or her microphone cut off.

Outfoxed should be required viewing by anyone who watches Fox News.  Fox News knows it is not fair and balanced, its viewers know this, and Fox knows its viewers know.  Ideally, Fox News would drop the pretension of being "fair and balanced" and just admit that it has a conservative slant.  Perhaps Outfoxed will be the catalyst for that change.

 





Tuesday, July 20, 2004

Editorializing, Fox News style

One of the revelations in the excellent documentary Outfoxed (will you people just go and buy a copy?  Now?  I'll wait.  Go on.  Get it before everyone involved is sued).
 
Okay.  Everyone's placed their orders?  Good. 
 
One of the interesting tidbits in Outfoxed is how Fox News uses specific language that allows them to editorialize without sounding like they are editorializing.
 
The magic phrase is:
Some people say...
 
That's the key!  Or a variant of that phrase.  That way, if you write an article about George W. Bush, you can say things like:
 
Some people say George W. Bush is dumber than a bag of cow shit.
 
I've heard some people say that George W. Bush couldn't find his ass with a mirror and a flashlight.
 
Or use it against your favorite Fox commentators:
 
Some people say Alan Colmes has his head so far up Sean Hannity's ass, that when Sean opens his mouth, you can see the top of Alan's head.
 
Some people would say that Bill O'Reilly is full of shit.  Pure, pungent, shit.
 
Some people say that if Sean Hannity had his head any further up George W. Bush's ass, Sean could do a colonoscopy without the scope.
 
See?  It's fun.  And it absolves the writer of having to use things like "sources" in writing a story.
 
Take that, fact checking!
 
 
 
 



The new column is up

It's an expanded version of my earlier post about Matt Drudge.  You can check it out at CounterBias.

Monday, July 19, 2004

The Drudge Guide to Internet Journalism

 
Matt Drudge likes to think of himself as a journalist.  Anyone who has visited his web site knows that it's essentially a page of links to other stories, with the occasional "reporting" by Drudge.  If Drudge had an actual background in journalism, or perhaps came out of college (if he went to college) with a journalism degree, he's taken what's he learned and tossed it aside in favor of his version of journalism.  The ABCs of journalism are accuracy, brevity and clarity.  I think it's safe to say Drudge only goes for brevity.
 
Drudge likes to publish rumors and pass those rumors off as "news."  He's like a dumpster diver of Internet news, looking for the news scraps the legitimate media throws away.
 
Take Drudge's most famous (or infamous) "exclusive," breaking the story of Monica Lewinsky's affair with Bill Clinton.  Drudge likes to take the credit for that story, but the truth is, the actual reporting had been done by Michael Isikoff of Newsweek.  The magazine had planned on running the piece and then decided not to.  Drudge picked up Isikoff's scraps and passed them along as a Drudge exclusive. 
 
And now, in 2004, Drudge's web site is one of the most popular web destinations, drawing millions of readers.  A target of Drudge's sensational reporting has been John Kerry, with Drudge reporting everything and anything that he comes across, whether it's a rumor of Kerry's use of Botox to Drudge's suggestion that John Kerry and John Edwards are actually gay lovers.  If it's embarrassing to Democrats, Drudge will undoubtedly post it to his web site.
 
I'll have more commentary on Drudge this week. 
 
Developing...
 



Sunday, July 18, 2004

What liberal media?

Right-wingers continue to insist that American media has a liberal slant; I receive e-mails from conservative readers who tell me about the liberal bias in the United States.  Conservative pundits say they cannot get their message out.  But they do get their message out.  Turn on any of the cable news channels and there's another conservative complaining about the fact that, aside from talk radio, cable news, the Internet, and a number of newspapers and magazines, their message isn't being communicated. 
 
And much in the same way the so-called liberal media hated Al Gore (how many times did you hear about Al Gore's "lies," even after they were debunked, such as Al Gore claiming he had invented the Internet?  It happened a lot).
 
The same thing is happening to John Kerry.  If the media were indeed liberal, wouldn't that media embrace Kerry?  Instead we continue to hear about Kerry's "flip-flops" or comments about his hair or distortions of Kerry's voting record. 
 
Bob Somerby of the Daily Howler has analyzed the media and its reporting on issues for several years now.   The Daily Howler should be required daily reading for anyone with an interest in the media, especially how the "liberal" media has treated George W. Bush and how John Kerry has been treated.  And it's not equal, and it has not been in John Kerry's favor.  Let's face it, George W. Bush and his administration have not done the greatest job in managing the country, yet the Bush/Kerry poll numbers are very close.  A recent CNN/USA Today/Gallup poll shows Kerry/Edwards with a slight edge of Bush/Cheney, 50% to 46%.    Yet George W. Bush's job approval is below 50%, at about 47%.  And as historical trends have shown, no president has ever been re-elected with an approval rating below 50%. 
 
If the liberal media had, in fact, been on Kerry's side, shouldn't Kerry's numbers be higher?  Bush's should be in the toilet.  The economy continues to sputter along, unemployment is at 5.6%, the same as it was in November 2001, when the recession started, and wages are not keeping up with inflation.  Civilians and soldiers continue to die in Iraq; nearly 900 Americans have been killed in action.  And despite the presence of the "liberal" media there has been little reporting on the numerous investigations into alleged prisoner abuse at the hands of U.S. military police.  All of this should make for a John Kerry landslide in November, but nothing is certain.
 
In the months to come we'll see just how liberal the media is, and we can judge that by comparing the editorial endorsements of both candidates.  Surely with a liberal media, John Kerry will have a higher number of media endorsements?  Right?  Yeah, right.
 

Friday, July 16, 2004

Jon Alvarez Hates America

Alvarez is the head of Patriotic Americans Boycotting Anti-American Hollywood.  I wrote about Alvarez and the dishonesty and lies he is using in his current petition to have Michael Moore charged with treason.  Alvarez's web site still has the doctored photograph of John Kerry "flipping the bird" which I've demonstrated to be a fake.
 
As it turns out, Alvarez's current petition to have Moore charged with treason isn't the first time he's circulated a petition against Moore.  In fact, Alvarez circulated a petition months before Fahrenheit 9/11 was released.
 
How do you boycott something that hasn't happened?    Here's some of what the petition said.  Remember, this was from November 2003:
 
His "Fahrenheit 911" will be a political assassination piece which uses lies, exaggerations, twisted facts and unsubstantiated reports in an attempt to discredit President George W. Bush. It also will be a vile insult to the memories of the victims of 9/11, but that doesn't matter to Moore. To vent his personal wrath and bring down the administration as promised, Moore actually is willing to endanger all of us by inflaming our enemies in a crazed attempt to plant seeds of doubt among Americans and our nation's allies.  
 
How could Jon Alvarez know all of this?  He didn't.  He just guessed, added his opinion, and tried to pass it off as facts.  Remember, this is the same individual who claimed that Fahrenheit 9/11 had actually caused the deaths of soldiers in Iraq.
 
Of course I support the right to free speech.  It's one thing to call for a boycott, but something else entirely when you base your boycott on lies and deception.  And Alvarez puts anyone on his boycott list who has said anything contrary to the Bush administration.  Alvarez is so out of touch with reality that he has Tom Clancy on his list! 
 
I can tell you this, military people love Tom Clancy.  The Hunt for Red October, the movie based on Clancy's book, was filmed with full support of the United States Navy.  I worked for the public affairs office that coordinated the Navy's involvement in the production of the film.  To put Tom Clancy on a boycott list simply because he disagreed with the Bush administration's decision to go to war smacks of Nazism.  Can you imagine Alvarez and his supporters operating in Nazi Germany, more than happy to forward on to the authorities the names of suspected Jews. 
 
Jon Alvarez is no patriot.  He hates America and will use any deceitful tactic to spread his message of hate and fear.  

Tuesday, July 13, 2004

Read My New Column at Michael Moore's site!

You can read it at Michael Moore's web site!

And make sure to stop by Counter Bias -- liberal news with a Canadian twist.

The New Column Is Up

My new column on efforts to have Michael Moore charged with treason is up at the usual sites...you can read it at CounterBias, or SmirkingChimp.

Drop me a line and let me know what you think.

Sunday, July 11, 2004

Top 10 Conservative Idiots

Did your favorite right-winger make the list? Click here for this week's Top 10 Conservative Idiots list.

Guest Columnist: Stephen Crockett

Cheney’s use of the nasty F-word (see http://www.truthout.org/docs_04/062604J.shtml) reflects some very deep problems in the values systems of many national leaders in the Republican Party. This value system problem was demonstrated this week regarding the sex scandal swirling around Illinois Republican Senate candidate Jack Ryan before his resignation.

Cheney used an obscenity toward Senator Patrick Leahy publicly in the U.S. Senate. Leahy has been very critical toward Haliburton’s war profiteering in Iraq and the White House role in steering “no-bid” contracts to this company that Cheney headed just before assuming the Vice Presidency.

Cheney’s tenure as head of Haliburton was marred by many serious allegations including accounting irregularities similar to Enron’s, foreign Haliburton entities trading with Saddam Hussein in violation of the UN embargo and paying hundreds of millions in bribes to Nigerian officials to secure contracts in violation of US law. Despite this litany of wrongdoings, Haliburton has been growing very fat on our tax dollars under the Bush Administration. Largely based on “no-bid” Iraqi War contracts awarded by the Bush Administration (often with the close coordination of the Vice President’s Office), Haliburton has risen rapidly among the ranks of defense contractors. Before Bush, they were reported to rank 37th in receiving US tax dollars spent on defense. Now, they rank 7th!

For Cheney to use the F-word publicly in the Senate over Leahy’s criticisms regarding Haliburton, he should have been asked to resign as Vice President. Instead, the Associated Press reported in two different stories that George W. Bush thinks it is not an issue and the Republican Majority Leader Bill Frist of Tennessee is refusing to criticize Cheney for his obscene language. Cheney has refused to even apologize. In fact, he has publicly stated that he “felt better” after using the obscene word. Right wing talk radio has been militant in defending this obscene language. If Al Gore had used such language while Clinton was in office, they would have been trying to impeach him!

The Republican claim to support “family values” and Christian ideas looks insincere, based on this case and that of Jack Ryan in Illinois. Ryan, based on court papers arising from his divorce, pressured his former wife to publicly have sex with him in sex clubs. He was running for office as a “family values” Bush Republican when these incidents became public (see http://www.suntimes.com/output/news/cst-nws-ryan22.html).

Republican leaders like Senator Rick Santorium of Pennsylvania strongly defended Ryan even after all the scandalous details were publicly reported. Santorium has based his entire political career on being a “family values” Bush Republican. He has been scathing in his attacks on former President Clinton regarding Clinton’s private sexual misconduct.

These are not isolated incidents. Anyone searching the Internet and visiting sites like Oped News.com, Buzzflash.com, Truthout.org, Democrats.com or any of the hundreds of non-Corporate Media news sources available there can find hundreds of other examples of Republican leaders making a mockery of “family values” or Christian beliefs. Examples of these behaviors being criticized or condemned by Bush Republican leaders are extremely rare to non-existent. How sincere can the public expressions of these Republican leaders be if they do not match private behaviors and are not condemned when Republicans engage in them?

Written by Stephen Crockett and Al Lawrence (hosts of Democratic Talk Radio http://www.DemocraticTalkRadio.com) . Phone: 443-421-0287. Mail: 7A Planville Drive, Fayetteville, TN 37334.

Saturday, July 10, 2004

Comparing Apples to Oranges: Fahrenheit 9/11 vs. Spiderman 2

I've read on a couple of right-wing message boards posts where the premise seems to be that there's a backlash against Fahrenheit 9/11 due to the popularity of Spiderman 2. There's a current thread at The Right Society discussing this fact.

The comparison is irrelevant for a number of reasons. One film is a standard Hollywood summer blockbuster, the other a modestly budgeted documentary.

Spiderman 2's budget was $200,000,000.
Fahrenheit 9/11's budget was $6,000,000.

Spiderman 2 opened in 4152 theaters. It's opening weekend gross was $115.8 million.
Fahrenheit 9/11 opened in 868 theaters. It's opening weekend gross was $23.9 million.

On its opening weekend, Spiderman 2 brought in an average of $27,894 per theater.
On its opening weekend, Fahrenheit 9/11 brought in an average of $27,558 per theater.

As of Friday, July 9, according to Box Office Mojo, Spiderman 2 had earned $225 million, playing at 4166 theaters.

As of Friday, July 9, according to Box Office Mojo, Fahrenheit 9/11 had earned nearly $73 million, playing at only 2011 theaters.

Right now, by all accounts, Fahrenheit 9/11 is the big winner. It's earned back over ten times what it cost to make. Spiderman 2, on the other hand, has only barely broke even, and perhaps less, as Sony spent a lot of money advertising the film.

So, as right-wingers react with glee that Moore's film is somehow a failure, they need only look at the box-office receipts to see that, as usual, they're wrong.

Thursday, July 08, 2004

One Last Bit About Blue Ridge Vets

Lauri, the "mom on a mission" at The Right Society, criticized me in a post for not discussing politics at her board -- that it was just "me, me, me."

Yet when Blue Ridge Vets showed up, he wasn't talking politics, either. Not that his one-note subject was objected by anyone at The Right Society. Oh, no, they bought his bullshit hook, line and sinker. As Lauri herself said, in commending BRV on his investigative skills:

well, we didnt know a think about him till you showed up so, i guess give yourself a hand as well..so do you keep tabs on this guy? cause we sure appreciate the heads up...

I love how right-wingers will believe anything another supposed right-winger says, and if it turns out what they're saying (or posting) is just lies, they ignore it. They wouldn't dare call one of their own a liar. Oh, no.

I wonder what The Right Society thinks of BRV's posting history at the Conservative Underground? Did he talk politics? Did he discuss his "tour" aboard USS Blue Ridge? Did he say what he did in the Navy? Did he give the dates he was stationed aboard Blue Ridge or the dates he was stationed at any other command? Nope. I'm sure some PMs have gone BRV's way, with those sorts of questions. And did BRV respond to those PMs? Not a chance.

Now, just look at his posting history at the Conservative Underground.

It's all about me. Nothing about him. Nothing about politics. No discussions on any subject. He does the sort of thing that he criticizes me for: shows up at a site, posts a few things, and then leaves, with no discussions about the things he posts. With one exception, at The Right Society, where he says, "Smif has had his ass handed to him perhaps like it's never been handed to him before. Well done, all of you."

Interesting thing to boast about, considering I wasn't allowed to participate in the discussion. How do you hand someone their ass in a discussion they are not a part of? That's like yelling at Sean Hannity while watching Hannity and Colmes and then applauding yourself for blasting his arguments.

Blue Ridge Vets has played The Right Society for suckers. I wonder how they feel about that?

Free World Syndicate

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Wednesday, July 07, 2004

Time to make fun of right-wing message boards

Two of my favorite conservative message boards have forums dedicated to making fun of posters at the Democratic Underground. Right-wingers get a kick out of this activity. I'm not sure why. I think it has more to do with maintaining their superiority complexes. In order to feel superior, they have to pick on people that are not necessarily going to defend themselves. Nice trick.

The Right Society proved to be even more arrogant that the Conservative Underground, so I'm going to feature my own forum where I make fun of them.

Take this thread by hoax-poster Blue Ridge Vets. He says a lot of bullshit about me.

But read the reactions...they believe Blue Ridge Vets, and they don't realize that he's lying through his teeth. But since he's one of them, that's okay. I know there are some Navy vets at TRS. If they attempt to engage BRV in discussion about his "military" career, they'll get a response of...nothing. Or if they asked him even basic questions about the ship USS Blue Ridge, he will not respond. Because he never served on board that ship, nor in the military. Any military vet can figure BRV out in about two seconds, especially a Navy vet. See, BRV reveals his ignorance with every post. Take how he always mentions that I only made it to E-4. Any enlisted Navy vet who served within the last 20 years will be very familiar with the PNA system. BRV seems to think people in the Navy get automatic promotions. But that's just not true, and for certain rates, it's harder to get promoted.

BRV mocks what I did in the Navy, but had he really served aboard any ship, he would know how important SITE television is to the crew, especially when underway. And had he actually served on, say, Blue Ridge, he would have known about the popularity of the JO's office. It was there that we stored all of the movies we aired, and almost every night someone would stop by and ask to borrow a film. We weren't supposed to lend them out, but we did. And I know damn well that if I was running the board and a tape got stuck, within two minutes I would get a call asking about the movie/TV show being aired, and if I knew the show or movie wasn't being aired. The Blue Ridge crew depended on SITE television. And when the wives and families left behind in Yokosuka would record video messages for their husband or boyfriend, who was it that aired the tapes? The JOs did.

When I put the TV schedule together for the week, and distributed it to all the different messes, I never had any left. The chief's mess, first class mess and officer's mess, they all were happy to see that TV schedule.

So Blue Ridge Vet's story about me is just that...a story, written by someone with minimal experience with the military. And The Right Wing Society? They were duped, and believed it all. I think as a vet I'd be pretty offended that some bullshit artist was pretending to be a vet, when in reality he's just a wannabe.

Right-Wing Jerk Attacks Girl

I don't understand why conservatives scratch their heads and wonder why people think they're racist, or homophobes, or, in the case of California's Education Secretary Richard Riordan, a bullying jerk.

On July 1st, at the Santa Barbara Central Library where Riordan had made an appearance to promote a summer reading program, he was approached by a girl who said her name was Isis and wanted to know if Riordan knew what it meant.

Riordan, a Republican, of course, replied, "It means stupid, dirty girl."

I'm guessing the girl does not have white skin.

This was done with television cameras rolling. Riordan quickly issued a half-assed apology saying his statement to the girl was a "misunderstanding."

What? A misunderstanding? What kind of stupid excuse is that? What, there was some other child that Riordan was supposed to say was a "stupid, dirty girl"? People like Riordan who make spectacular asses of themselves like this always add to the apology that it was a "misunderstanding," instead of saying, "I don't know why I said what I said. I'm a stupid ass."

Governor Schwarzenegger issued a statement that the comments were "unacceptable in any context." But of course Schwarzenegger nullified his remarks by also saying Riordan "would never knowingly or intentionally upset a child. ... I know he deeply regrets having made these unfortunate remarks."

What kind of bullshit is this? Of course the remark was intentional. Right-wingers are always saying stupid shit that they have to apologize for, and then qualify the apology with stupid shit like "it was a misunderstanding."

President Inexperience Speaks Out

George W. Bush is speaking out against John Edwards, saying Edwards does not have enough experience to be vice president. What? Bush's only experience with politics was the five years he served as governor of Texas. Edwards served for six years in the United States Senate. By my calculations, Edwards has more political experience than Bush did when Bush ran for president. According to Newsday, "A feisty President Bush today curtly questioned the qualifications of Sen. John Edwards to be vice president, and the president predicted that the Republicans would again carry North Carolina and do well throughout the South in the presidential election. Asked by a reporter to compare Edwards, the freshman senator from North Carolina whom Sen. John F. Kerry picked a day earlier to be his running mate, to Vice President Dick Cheney, the president said: "Dick Cheney can be president. Next (question)."

I wonder how much contempt conservatives have for average Americans? How stupid do they think we are? Bush's resume isn't exactly a long list of accomplishments, and he and his supporters felt he had enough experience. Whatever. Americans seem to like the choice of Edwards as Kerry's running mate. A Gallup CNN/USA Today poll showed 64% of respondents as saying Edwards was an "excellent" or "pretty good" choice.

It should be a good race, especially come debate time.

Tuesday, July 06, 2004

GOP Reaction to Kerry-Edwards Ticket

The Republican National Committee issued a press release today, following John Kerry's announcement of his running mate, John Edwards. And the RNC's response? Edwards is "unaccomplished and inexperienced."

Unaccomplished and inexperienced? That sounds like a former Texas governor. What the hell did Bush accomplish in Texas that made him a qualified presidential candidate? When he secured the Republican nomination, he had just as much political experience as John Edwards. And as we know from California, one need not have any political experience to be elected to the highest office. Right, Governor Schwarzenegger?

What exactly had Governor George W. Bush accomplished in Texas?

According to the Dec. 4, 1997 USA Today, some of Bush's accomplishments during his first term as governor were:

-- Increased state spending by billions of dollars;
-- Failed to pass legislation for school vouchers;
-- Did nothing to help improve the SAT scores of Texas students (Texas ranked #42 for SAT scores when the USA Today article came out);

Other accomplishments:
-- While governor, Texas had worst air pollution in nation;
-- Failed leadership in getting hate crime legislation passed;
-- Texas ranked #50 in spending on teacher sallaries;

And, of course, no foreign policy experience.

If George W. Bush's background and experience were enough to get him elected president, surely John Edwards is just as qualified, if not more so, to be vice president.




Help Beta Test My new BBS

I have a new message board/forum ready for people to post to. If you get a chance, come on over and give it a spin. I want to make sure everything is working.

Kerry picks John Edwards as running mate

As expected, John Kerry announced his selection of a running-mate for the 2004 election, and his choice: Senator John Edwards. That's a pretty good ticket, so it should make for an interesting election this year. Here's what John Kerry had to say about his selection, in an e-mail he sent to supporters this morning:

"In just a few minutes, I will announce that Senator John Edwards will join me as my running-mate on the Democratic ticket as a candidate for vice president of the United States. Teresa and I could not be more excited that John and Elizabeth Edwards will be our partners in our journey to make America stronger at home and respected in the world.

I want you to know why I'm excited about running for president with John Edwards by my side. John understands and defends the values of America. He has shown courage and conviction as a champion for middle class Americans and those struggling to reach the middle class. In the Senate, he worked to reform our intelligence, to combat bioterrorism, and keep our military strong. John reaches across party lines and speaks to the heart of America -- hope and optimism. Throughout his own campaign for President, John spoke about the great divide in this country -- the "Two Americas" -- that exists between those who are doing well today and those who are struggling to make it from day to day. And I am so proud that we're going to build one America together.

In the next 120 days and in the administration that follows, John Edwards and I will be fighting for the America we love. We'll be fighting to give the middle class a voice by providing good paying jobs and affordable health care. We'll be fighting to make America energy independent. We'll be fighting to build a strong military and lead strong alliances, so young Americans are never put in harm's way because we insisted on going it alone.

I can't tell you how proud I am to have John Edwards on my team, or how eager I am for the day this fall when he stands up for our vision and goes toe-to-toe with Dick Cheney.

This is the most important election of our lifetime, and a defining moment in our history. With you by our side every day of this campaign, John and I will lead the most spirited presidential campaign America has ever seen, and fight to lead our nation in a new and better direction.

Thank you,

John Kerry"

Monday, July 05, 2004

Top 10 Conservative Idiots Is Up

I don't know of any better way of celebrating the day after the 4th of July than by laughing at conservatives. Check out this week's Top 10 Conservative Idiots list.

Nation Building, Bush Style

Candidate Bush was no fan of nation building during the 2000 election, but the attacks on Sept. 11 changed Bush's mind. True, Al-Qaeda hailed mainly from Afghanistan, and the mastermind of the 9/11 attacks, Osama Bin Laden, was also in Afghanistan. No matter. Bush wanted his war with Saddam, and when you're a Bush, you get what you ask for.

In theory we've turned over sovereignty to the Iraqi governing council. They're in charge, supposedly, although we've kept control over the military, which means we really didn't turn over sovereignty to Iraq. If Iraq were truly a soverign nation, they would have control over the military. So, instead, we've given then a sort of pseudo-sovereignty.

The real test of how sovereign Iraq is will come during the trial of Saddam Hussein. Suppose -- just suppose -- that Hussein is found guilty of whatever crimes he's been charged with, and the punishment is a year in prison. Or a fine. And that's all. What will we do then? I suspect we'd end the whole sovereignty project. No way we're going to allow Iraq to do anything less than put Saddam Hussein in jail for life, or execute him.

Now if we could just find those damn WMDs...

Sunday, July 04, 2004

Conservative Underground Gets the Truth

Finally, the record is set straight over at CU with this post:

Hey guys....All I can say is its NOT scottcsmith. ITs been checked out...you know how we keep an eye out for trolls coming back....so everyone...keep guessing!

That's from Rob Crook, the head guy at CU.

Bite me, Blansten.

Another Right-Wing Fascist Tries to Silence Moore

Another group of right-wing fascists is attempting to silence Michael Moore, this time with a petition to charge Moore with -- get ready for it -- treason.

Do right-wingers actually know what the word means? They use it so often you'd think they did, but they do not. Here is how the federal government defines treason, from USC Title 18, Chapter 115, section 2381:

Whoever, owing allegiance to the United States, levies war against them or adheres to their enemies, giving them aid and comfort within the United States or elsewhere, is guilty of treason and shall suffer death, or shall be imprisoned not less than five years and fined under this title but not less than $10,000; and shall be incapable of holding any office under the United States.

Jon Alvarez is founder of the group Patriotic Americans Boycotting Anti-American Hollywood, and he has a petition up to charge Moore with treason.

The petition reads:

"To U.S. Attorney General John Ashcroft:
(with copies to House Majority Leader Tom DeLay, Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist and Speaker of the House Dennis Hastert as well as my Congressmen)

The definition of treason includes betrayal of the United States of America by consciously and purposely acting to aid our nation's enemies during war. As a signer of this petition, I demand a formal charge of treason be brought forward against movie director Michael Moore.

We are a nation at war with a barbaric enemy, an enemy who purposely targets the women and children as well as the innocent. We can no longer allow treasonous speech and action to be confused with free speech, which is only protected so far as it does not place the lives of others in danger.

Michael Moore's recently released film, "Fahrenheit 9/11", seeks to undermine our nation's morale during this current struggle and thus places all of us, as well as our brave soldiers, in harm's way. Michael Moore provides aid and comfort to our enemy by falsely portraying our government in a negative light, as liars and manipulators, as well as our troops as baby killers and torturers.

Director Michael Moore's film can only be seen as irresponsible, dangerous and thus a threat to our national security. How many more American captives will be executed as a result of Michael Moore's actions?

Michael Moore's anti-American propaganda, with its creative editing and blatant disregard for the truth, places the lives of our soldiers in harm's way by giving the false expectation to our enemy that America will no longer support the war on terror. Nothing could be further from the truth. American resolve in this war is steadfast.

Any weakness displayed by our country will only lead to a renewed vigor in the spirit of this barbaric enemy we seek to defeat. The American public will not allow Michael Moore and our domestic enemies to weaken the war effort. Nor will we allow these traitorous foes to bring our troops home under the dark cloud of shame and dishonor, as we allowed them to do during the Vietnam War.

Please, bring formal charges against Michael Moore. He has clearly stated it is his objective to bring down the Bush Presidency. His conspiracy theories, while debunked by his critics here at home, will be seen as factual and correct by our enemies abroad. We ask you do the right thing. All of our necks are on the line."

How ridiculous can right-wingers get? Why are they so desperate to stifle a voice of opposition? Do they really think terrorists will be lining up around the block to see this movie? And if they do, wouldn't that be an easy way to capture them? Imagine, a movie theater filled with terrorists. Just bomb the theater! End of terrorist threat. It seems that Moore's film might actually do some good.

Perhaps the most ridiculous claim of this petition is the following (unsubstantiated, of course):

"More of our soldiers are dying as a result of Moore and his movie, and America is increasingly being threatened because of Moore's turncoat treachery. By falsely portraying our government in a negative light, as liars and manipulators, as well as our troops as baby killers and torturers, he incites blood-thirsty terrorists to strike at our homeland, our citizens and military personnel in an effort to weaken America's resolve to fight on to victory."

Could it be that our soldiers are dying because they are being shot at in a war zone? People were dying long before this movie came out -- you know, when Bush told the world that we had to stop Saddam Hussein because of all of his weapons of mass destruction.

And conservatives wonder why liberals call them Nazis. Because they are.

I'm not going to provide a link to the petition. I don't support fascism.

Saturday, July 03, 2004

I just had to post one more thing

I know I'm beating a dead horse here, but I wanted to comment on the series of threads at CU where Gern "I can smell a troll a mile away" Blansten continues to bluster and harrumph that he's outed me as "Bikeman." And he's so proud of himself. Blansten epitomizes right-wing mentality so well: they arrogantly think they are right, and when they are proven wrong, cannot admit that they were wrong.

Blansten sums up his arrogance nicely here:

http://www.scottcsmith.net/arch530.htm

You typed those very words yourself on your own blog, you stupid, stupid shithead. Oh and don't bother trying to run back now and erase them before people can click on your archive. I've already done a screen capture of your incriminating lie; one step ahead of you again, like always.

Can't you remember what you even type? Can't you search your own archives? Are you a pathalogical (sic) liar or something?

How can you be so incredibly, indelibly stupid?


He's referring to a post where I talk about being banned from CU. And if Gern had the brains to link things together logically, he'd realize that once scottcsmith was banned, I used the two troll accounts which, as I've already said, I stopped using on June 6.

But wait! There's more!

This is getting so old at this point. This is when I remind you that I’ve bested you yet again, and then you slam your pudgy fists on your keyboard in frustration, and slink away to try to devise some other scheme on how to post on CU.

I’ll say it again; you are unfathomably stupid. Sometimes you render me speechless with your idiocy.


I was just thinking the same thing about you, Gern. You are unfathomably stupid. Will you be embarrassed at all when you learn the truth? Will you read your posts where you "outed" me after you've realized that you were wrong, and feel stupid about yourself? About what a complete and utter ass you've made of yourself?

In any event, it'll be amusing to see how this unfolds.

Gern: You Cannot Handle The Truth!

Gern's all pissed now at me for my recent entry about his obsession with me posting at CU.

Okay, Gern, since you read this:

Several weeks ago, Rob Crook and I agreed that I would not post at his site, and his agreement was copyrighted entries from this site wouldn't be reproduced at CU. An agreement he's broken, unfortunately.

Here's the deal. I posted as scottcsmith and was banned. I invented a couple of stupid trolls and Rob Crook had enough of my disruption He posted this message which didn't mention me by name, but was directed at me.

So I wrote Rob on June 6 and told him I would not post at his site, as long as he kept my copyrighted material from being reproduced at CU. I did not post that agreement here, which was an e-mail from me to Rob.

Ah, but ole' Gernie is still convinced I'm lying. He's very sure of it here, and again here.

So Gern, if you really are just itching to comment, go to my other blog and comment to your heart's content.

Fun At the Conservative Underground

Oh, this is so rich, I just cannot pass it up.

I'm going to admit to something which my right-wing audience probably will not believe: a while back, I made an agreement with Rob Crook over at the Conservative Underground that I would stop posting at his site, and I've kept that promise. Sure, I read CU, but have not posted there since...well, I don't remember, maybe since the end of May, in any incarnation. There's this guy at CU, named Gern Blansten, who continues to insist that I'm posting at CU as a "troll," which is message-board speak for a phony poster, someone who invents a persona with the goal of disruption.

But here's the relevant thread, and Gern's posts are contained within, on the second page of threads. He sure thinks it's me. "Go ahead and try, scottie, I'll finger you again in a heartbeat."

HA! Great detection skills, Gernie.

scottcsmith.

He plauges you over at rightsociety as well, but he's been banned from here and this is his third pathetic attempt at trying to adopt a conservative persona and post on CU.

I out him each and every time. As I said, he's an amateur.


Or this:

Trust me on this one, JC. There's a history here between this idiot and myself long before you showed up, and that's not meant to be a slight on my part towards you.

I can smell a troll a mile away. Especially this particular one.


Ooh, my sides are aching. Great job with sniffing me out, Gernie.

Friday, July 02, 2004

Powell: Saddam innocent until proven guilty

Here's an amazing bit of news, from MSNBC: Secretary of State Colin Powell commenting that Saddam Hussein should be considered innocent until proven guilty.

JAKARTA - U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell said on Friday former Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein should be assumed to be innocent in his trial.

“The people of the world should watch carefully, listen carefully,” Powell said in his first comments on the judicial process against Saddam and 11 former aides that began on Thursday in Baghdad.

“Assume he’s innocent if you will, and let’s assume that, and let the Iraqi people through their courts decide,” Powell said in an interview with Indonesian television channel RCTI on the sidelines of an Asian security meeting in Jakarta.


Got that? A member of the Bush administration saying Saddam Hussein should be considered innocent until proven guilty.

Sound familiar? That's because Howard Dean made a similar statement about Osama Bin Laden.

On Dec. 26, 2003, Dean said, according to CNN.com, "I've resisted pronouncing a sentence before guilt is found," Dean said in the interview. "I will have this old-fashioned notion that even with people like Osama, who is very likely to be found guilty, we should do our best not to, in positions of executive power, not to prejudge jury trials."

Dean added he is certain most Americans agree with that sentiment.


Dean latter amended his comments with the statement, "As an American, I want to make sure he gets the death penalty he deserves."

Of course Dean's comments ignited a firestorm. Even his campaign opponent at the time, John Kerry, scolded Dean, according to the Jan. 5, 2004, Washington Times: "That raises serious questions about your ability to stand up to Bush and make Americans feel safe," said Sen. John Kerry of Massachusetts. "What in the world were you thinking?"

So, now we wait for public outrage over Powell's comments. Will it happen? Probably not. You know, that whole double-standard thing.









Thursday, July 01, 2004

What's In Scott's Head Back Up

The domain switch is complete, so you should be able to access What's In Scott's Head again.