If you click my name it should take you to my blog but I don't post often for a couple of reasons. First it is on blogspot which is really owned by Google and I have a problem with Google these days in their manipulation of Google News. Secondly I don't like the interface there. It is just a pain in the rear to enter articles with it. I am considering taking my blog someplace else but I don't feel like messing with it much, usually.Comment Posted By crosspatch On 19.06.2006 @ 02:13
The real problem occurs not so much in covering what the terrorists do but rather in how the â€œnarrativeâ€ of the story is played out. Much of what appears in the media today about the war on terror is, almost soap opera like, part of a continuing â€œstory.â€ The story has a plot, it has characters (both protagonists and antagonists), and it is reported in serial fashion. Hence, the â€œstoryâ€ in Iraq is how many bombs went off in Baghdad, how many people were killed, and totalling the body count of Americans with the usual referrals to previous â€œepisodesâ€ that were similar. It doesnâ€™t matter if almost the same story appears tomorrow because it simply becomes the latest installment in the serial.
Exactly. The news has become entertainment not unlike cheap serial novels and the "journalists" not unlike the authors of it. Every day Gretta has the latest from Aruba (maybe she is off that story now and on the Duke "rape" drama"). Every day we have the latest on Haditha. It is about "following stories" so the flip side of that is about "keeping stories alive" so they can be followed.
What works REALLY well are stories with anonymous sources that can't be confirmed. Where additional detail can be added later if the story needs a little push and nobody knows if there really is a source or if the journalist is making it up. I suspect there is a nugget of truth someplace but the rest is fabrication. If it were about whistle-blowing, you would think the reporter would want the whistle blower to go public as to give them a HUGE exclusive story and even more juice as the debate went public.
News is entertainment these days. It is the news manufacturing industry more than the news reporting industry.Comment Posted By crosspatch On 18.06.2006 @ 23:37
When are the neo cons going to stop blaming the media,and start blaming the policy makers that put together a lousy plan, based on bogus intel, with poor international buy in?
This is a prime example of the reason for the problem. Mush-minded political agenda driven thought with no basis in actually thinking the issues through.
First of all, we never went there with the plan being to invade Iraq. We went into Kuwait with the intention that we would show sufficient force and wherewithall to cause Saddam to allow the inspection regime we needed to comply with UN resolutions. I believe we thought Saddam would take the peaceful way out that we offered him right up to nearly the last day. If he accepted unfettered inspections, there would have been no invasion.
This kind of speaking from the commenter is the psychological 180 that people pushing that political agenda would attempt to foist onto the public. They would attempt to portray the invasion as some goal of the President's. What really happened is that France and Russia convinced Saddam that we were bluffing. Basically France and Russia precipitated the war we are now in. Had they not been so protective of their own economic interests in busting Oil for Food sanctions to make a quick buck, Saddam would still be in power.
Maybe they realized this. Maybe they figured that by appearing side against the US, they could actually precipitate the removal of Saddam and not be held responsible for it knowing that he was going to have to be removed at some point in the future anyway and better to do it when the job was on our plate.
Also, we had plenty of "international buy in". The last resolution passed by the UN Security Council that adopted "grave consequences" for not *completely* complying with inspections passed unanimously. What didn't get a vote was an explicit war resolution because Germany, France, and Russia stood against it. Practically the entire rest of Western Europe and Eastern Europe supported us.
France and Germany were at the time attempting to create an EU as a nation that would be a counter-balance to the US. They were taking this position for internal political reasons. As it turned out, Chirac has worse approval ratings now in France than Bush does in the US. Schroeder in Germany was removed from office and replaced by Merkel who is much friendlier to the US. Chirac will likely to be replaced by Sarkozy next year. Sarkozy is a big fan of Tony Blair and Merkel. The cost of not supporting us has been high for the center-left parties in Europe. Staring next year, you will see a Europe that is likely to be increasingly favorable to the US.
The notion of requiring "international buy-in" is flawed for another reason. The only people on the planet that it appears to be important to are American leftists and countries too small to defend themselves. In every other case a country's policies are set by their own interests, not the interests of others. We are not going to allow our foreign policy to be dictated by China's or France's interest. Neither will their policies be dictated by our interests.
The line of thinking shown by the poster is a perfect example of how the media has been able to distort the reality in the minds of those who would already want to believe a certain outcome to be true. By saying something to be so, the media has caused it to become so in the minds of those who wanted that to be so to begin with.
The reality is different. Saddam had in his power the ability to prevent an invasion right up to the last minute and I believe a major part of our lack of planning for the peace afterwards was because we didn't really think we were going to have to invade. I don't believe we thought France, Germany, and Russia would encourage Saddam to resist the inspection demands.
That we are in this situation today isn't the fault of Bush, it is mainly the fault of Chirac and Saddam. All that was needed to avoid the entire thing was inspections.Comment Posted By crosspatch On 18.06.2006 @ 21:36
Looking at the Rasmussen poll, bouncing Zarq didn't bounce Bush's numbers.
That might be a function of the near ubiquitous "it won't mean a thing" reporting from the media on the issue. But what might matter is once the followup raids are done and we are able to see just how much other stuff was gained, we might get a bounce later.
Although the bombings continue in Baghdad, one has to expect that some number of them were already approved and "in the pipeline" when we zapped Zarq. Give a week for those operations to work their way through the pipeline and for some indication of what the additional raids (56 raids so far is the number I heard last) have netted to come in.
Also, while bombings do continue, it seems the casualty rate has decreased. Through the past month and a half or so, Iraq was running at near 30 civilians a day average death rate. We seem to be running below that since "the event".Comment Posted By crosspatch On 10.06.2006 @ 19:53
Hmm, one of the commentors over at the Confederate Yankee raises a good point:
True on all accounts, however, the hyperbole is EXACTLY why we're discussing this matter right now..Would it national or blogosphere news if you had made the argument you just did without resorting to hyperbole...I can see the headlines "confederate yankee makes great point about moral authority"...all over the place. Sometimes it takes hyperbole and shock to get those who normally dont respond to reason to begin on their path....
Posted by: redxiii at June 6, 2006 07:42 PM
Emphasis mine. At least she does get people talking about the issues, that's for sure. I just hope they are thinking about the ISSUE (a select group of 5 particular 9/11 widows .. not all of the widows) and not about Ann.Comment Posted By crosspatch On 6.06.2006 @ 20:23
WORD! There is a place for comon decency even in political debate even as the blogosphere has become the scene of perpetual political roadrage syndrome.
I basically like Ann Coulter's commentaries but it is a bad kind of like. I like the way she so effectively engages in button-pushing rhetoric against those that push my buttons. That said, she does sometimes go a bit too far and can be embarrassing.
Most of the time I find myself laughing at her columns because face it, many times she IS funny ... and correct. Sometimes she goes a bit far though.
I agree. She should apologize for being mean but not for telling them that there comes a point when it is time to move on.Comment Posted By crosspatch On 6.06.2006 @ 20:14
"broad strata" is actually pretty funny because it doesn't say what people are thinking it says. It would be the opposite of "broad cross section". A cross section would include all strata ... or layers. The author of the original article is being clever with words here. He is saying that all those caught belonged to a single, albeit broad, strata or layer of society. He describes the broadness, but not the identifying factor that defines exactly which strata (or stratum in this case) that individuals are from.
He just found a clever way of telling people that these people all had an certain identifying similarity without describing the similarity and without getting his article spiked by his (probably) PC editor.Comment Posted By crosspatch On 4.06.2006 @ 17:46
But the major reason he needs to be fired is that he re-wrote the story. See Hugh Hewitt or my blog. The text of the article that is currently at The Blotter (must be what Ross is using recreationally, I didn't know they still made that stuff) is different than the original text so while ABC might be claiming to "stand behind the story" they have gone back and re-written history so the story they are "standing behind" isn't the one they originally broke. It is just plain dishonest. "Hiding behind" their story might be more accurate. You can issue a new story but you don't go rewiting history and change an article after it si published without so much as a comment or footnote or something.Comment Posted By crosspatch On 25.05.2006 @ 12:12
Yall should follow that trackback above to the anchoress' website and this post. I think it's awesome.Comment Posted By crosspatch On 22.05.2006 @ 23:51
Well, like I said, Iâ€™d never consider not voting.
Okay, then you weren't a member of the group I was speaking of. That was exactly the response I was calling passive-aggressive and was what the entire rest of the "emotional retardation" spew was about. So you were complaining about what?
Yes, I WILL vote for a Third Party â€“ and admit it, thatâ€™s whatâ€™s really got everyone worried.
I voted for a third party many times. I was even registered Libertarian for many years. I finally changed to Republican mainly because A: the Libertarian Party tends to run nuts for office so I was voting Republican anyway and B: I didn't get polling place instructions or sample ballots as a Libertarian. You have to be one of the major two parties to get that information in California, I suppose. Our polling places are generally in a neighbor's garage and it changes from election to election as different people volunteer to host the polling place. If you don't get the thingy in the mail, you have to research it yourself.
But voting for a third party isn't a bad thing. And I don't think anyone was getting pissy at all. I believe what many people call "the base" (al Qaeda in Arabic) is smaller than a frustrated center. In fact, California currently has 25% of its voters registered Independent. The Democratic registrations are a falling percentage while Repiblicans have held about steady at something like 38%. What some people might call RINOs are probably the majority of the party. And a center-right candidate along the lines of a Rudy Giuliani could probably grab a big chunk of that 25% of Independents at the expense of maybe 5% on the far right. In a case like that, the far right could become irrelevent. They could more of a detriment to the party than an asset. Why? Because they refuse to compromise and that is a bad thing in politics. They expect the rest of the party to step closer to their view but are unwilling to consider accepting the rest of the party's view even for the sake of a national election. They don't care it they damage the party for short term satisfaction.
The problem is that you can't just say we will give the Dems some seats this cycle and get them back the next. An incumbent is hard to get out of office. It is easy to lose one by not voting but it's harder to get one back once lost. The Republicans are lucky in this Senate cycle because 40R seats are not up for election so even if the Republicans lost every single race the Dems still wouldn't get a 2/3 majority in the Senate.
This reminds me of some changes I would like to see the Republican Party make. The biggest one is that I would like to see an end to "winner take all" primary states. I would like to see the delegates split according to the votes of the people. This would mean that candidates come to the convention with a number of delegates that is more representative of their true popularity. This notion that someone can win with 1% more of the vote and get 100% of the delegates is not a good thing. Particularly if a candidate does something or says something or takes a position that is extremely unpopular late in the primary cycle.Comment Posted By crosspatch On 22.05.2006 @ 22:17