Scripting News for 5/17/2007


BBC: “Anya Peters went from homeless blogger to published author in the blink of an eye.”

My Sprint EVDO card works grrrreat in this hotel.

Josh Marshall: “This White House has mainly used ‘classification’ as a way to keep embarrassing information out of public view.”

Checked in at the Hilton, across the street from Ground Zero.

We’ve all been here at one time or another. Well, at least I have. 🙂

Ron Paul the hero of 2008? 

Of course the Republicans are trying to tar and feather Rep Ron Paul, spin what he says to make it sound like he’s a nut.

Even the Democrats aren’t making as much sense as he is.

The things he’s saying are surely what the politicos in Washington say when the cameras aren’t on. We need more of that. Poor McCain, I can imagine at one point he might have said these things. But he’s too sold out now to have any chance of winning if he did. His career would be over. But, you gotta wonder why he doesn’t go ahead, because his career is totally over anyway, and the thought of more people dying, Americans and Iraqis, so he can hold on to a sliver of hope that he might win an election someday, suggests that he never really had any morals, he was just playing someone with them, in the hope of getting elected.

I’d like to shake Ron Paul’s hand someday. I might even work for the guy, how about that! I honestly don’t give a damn if the Republicans win or the Democrats — I’d just like to see us, as a country, start using our brains, and start caring about not just ourselves but the poor schnooks who are dying. A little Golden Rule would help us feel okay about all the blessings we have.

As Maude used to say, and I think this every time I hear one of these guys like Blitzer or McCain (they’re all the same) lie on TV — God’ll get you for that Walter. Well God won’t only be getting Wolfe and John, he’ll be getting you and me, if we stand around and don’t do anything and let the bullshit continue.

Point of view is everything 

Les Orchard: “Twitter becomes immensely interesting when it turns out that you’ve amassed a group of contacts who tend to run in similar circles as you, because even their off-handed remarks and random burps have a decent chance of surfacing something interesting or entertaining. When it’s good, this sets up a nice ambient chatter like sitting in a coffee shop filled with just your kind of people.”

That’s exactly right. And he goes on to explain that’s why when reviewers look at Twitter, or other networking systems (like blogs) they see them as mundane. But it’s like listening to random phone conversations, you’d think the same thing. But suppose you were listening to a conversation among people you know?

Twitter isn’t private, so it’s not exactly like eavesdropping, but it is personal. These days on the Internet we’re experimenting with various mixtures of private and public, subscriptions and ephemeral connections. Almost no one watches the main Twitter page, yet that’s probably where most of the reviewers go.

The naive reviewer hasn’t got much to offer these days.

Wolf Blitzer interviews Ron Paul 

It’s amazing how Blitzer protects his viewers from the new information that there might be understandable reasons why the US was attacked on 9-11. (Of course the information itself is old, what’s new is that it’s being aired on CNN.)

We’ve been killing huge numbers of people in the Middle East for a long time. If a foreign power was doing to us what we do to them, we’d be pissed, and we’d fight back. (As they are.)

Paul is right, of course — and Blitzer is wrong. Paul is the only candidate of either party with the guts to cut through the nonsense and say what’s obviously true. And Blitzer is the one that owes us an apology, for carrying the lies for so long. He’s supposed to be a journalist, and his job is to be neutral and to find and tell the truth.

Ron Paul is good medicine for the US political system.

PS: If Giuliani is so good at protecting us, why did the attacks happen on his watch? Why no warning from Giuliani? Didn’t he see it coming? Couldn’t he prevent it? Why should anyone think he’d do any better if he was President?

21 responses to this post.

  1. I’m loving Ron Paul and role he’s playing, disruptive in a great way, something like a Middle Ages fool

    Doesn’t it seem like maybe we’ve finally turned a corner when you see things like this piece in the Washington Post ? Two retired generals talk about how our torture policies create more terrorists.

    Thank goodness all kinds of people are stepping up to refute that blind nonsensical “They attack us because they hate freedom” thing.


  2. Posted by a z on May 17, 2007 at 4:28 am

    Notice how Paul is saying “I blame bad policy for 9/11” as the screen flashs “Blames U.S. for 9/11”.

    Paul is being treated the same way Kucinich is on the Democratic side.


  3. Posted by dataGuy on May 17, 2007 at 4:56 am

    I don’t care for Giuliani. However, that’s not a fair dig Dave. Clearly the President has far more intel resources than the Mayor of New York.

    New York must have had some chances to catch on to this operation but since this was an air attack, it’s hard to say just how much was done “on the ground” in NYC.


  4. I think it’s fair because he’s claiming 9-11 as his issue, and his ability to protect the US. Any of us could have protected the US, by saying terrorism should have been a priority. He could have had the fire department and police drill in advance, or since he’s a Republican and he says the Republicans are better at protecting us, he could have gotten intelligence information from the President, who is also a Republican, that indicated that an attack was coming. Recall that the President had a briefing in August 2001 where they told him it was coming.
    It doesn’t seem likely that he has a response to these questions — so then the real point is that he is no better than any of the others at protecting us, and he’s lying, and playing with our lives, to get elected.
    Paul has a much better plan for protecting American lives. Start listening to everyone we can, and stop thinking about killing everyone before we can listen. And do business with them.
    I like him because he thinks — I don’t like Giuliani because he has simplistic answers and takes cheap shots and short cuts, that (as we’ve found out) just make things worse.
    Giuliani deserves a lot more tough questions than the ones I asked.
    And, btw, why don’t you use your real name? It’s kind of disrespectful to say someone else is wrong and then not have the courage to put your name on it.


  5. Posted by vanni on May 17, 2007 at 6:10 am

    funny how some of us that were saying what Ron Paul is saying today, back in the months just after 9/11, were branded as terrorist lovers. The issue is not as black as white as it was portrayed for years in the media. so … five years on and we are now coming round to what Ron Paul is articulating. … truth will out. ( your points about Giuliani are spot on! …)


  6. Vanni, I think Ron Paul was saying it then too.

    I first heard of him last summer when the first cracks started to appear in the Republican’s resolution about the sanity of the war.

    I had my doubts at the beginning, and said it would never work. When our soldiers took Baghdad, I got a bunch of demands for a retraction, kind of like what Paul is getting now, but I didn’t retract. I thought they were blowhards, idiots who have no memory or are too young to remember what a morass Vietnam was and how hard it was to get out (and how easy to get in).

    I’ll never forget how the press cheered Bush as a visionary and a great leader, back then. They haven’t forgotten either, I think that’s why Blitzer was giving him a hard time.


  7. Posted by Dan Barnes on May 17, 2007 at 7:35 am

    Ron Paul’s previous political emphasis seems to have been about returning to gold-backed currency and abolishing the federal income tax. I haven’t followed the guy, have just begun reading about him, but his stand on the war is only one part of the picture. These other parts, which are less mainstream by today’s standards, deserve some scrutiny too.


  8. Posted by Allan Smith on May 17, 2007 at 7:37 am

    Blitzer performed relatively well here, in that he provided an opportunity for Paul to explain himself further. His seemingly antagonistic softball questions were easily turned around. Paul took the opportunity and had no trouble putting forth his case.


  9. Dave,

    Mike Gravel on the democratic side is also raising the kinds of issues that Ron Paul is, his heart is on the right place. I posted a couple of his interventions here:

    btw, it was nice to see you in Vegas a few weeks ago.



  10. Posted by Howard Cronin on May 17, 2007 at 8:43 am

    I live in Paul’s district and don’t be fooled into thinking he’s some “white knight”. He believes the government shouldn’t interfere with ANYTHING, good or bad. While he may have been against the Iraq War, he’s also against giving aid to ANY foreign country, even if they desperately need it — Rwanda, Bosnia, East Timor — the US shouldn’t help any of them, according to Paul. And every year, he proposes that the US pull out of the UN.

    His problem is actually similar to Dubya’s: things are either black or white, there is no gray. Except that Paul would prefer the government to do nothing. The problem with that philosophy is that the world is NOT black or white…it is almost ALL gray. Sure, decriminalizing drugs like “pot” might be fine, but in Paul’s world, you can’t just stop there. You need to decriminalize crack, heroin, the “date rape” drug, and everything else. Sure, preemptive wars should not occur, but in Paul’s world, we shouldn’t even send government money to Africa to help with their AIDS problem. And this is hyperbole…. those are things Paul actually voted against.

    I guess on a national scale, it’s nice to have Paul as a spoiler. I’ve just lived too long in his district to be taken in by his rhetoric.


  11. Posted by Howard Cronin on May 17, 2007 at 8:44 am

    “And this is hyperbole…. those are things Paul actually voted against.”

    that should say, ” And this is NOT hyperbole…”


  12. Yes but…

    I feel strongly that our process rushes too quickly into deciding on which candidate to vote for and skips over the vital step of figuring out what we want.

    So Paul is doing a wonderful job of representing an issue I feel very very very strongly about — that we should THINK as a country, and understand that everything we do has consequences.

    As a country we act like a spoiled brat, and given our power that’s not a very good way for us to act.

    So Paul stands up and says — You know what, if they did that to us we’d be damned pissed and we’d start killing some of them to get their attention.

    Exactly right.

    Our mistake is that we place a higher value on an American life than we do other lives. And some American lives are worth more than others. Who cares if the kids are dying in Iraq, they volunteered for it. Well, I care!! The thought of them dying for this idiotic war makes me want to shake these assholes and ask how they sleep at night.

    It’s one thing to go to war for your survival, but this has nothing to do with survival, it’s a class thing, imposing our caste system on the lower classes in the US, and the even lower classes in the Muslim world.

    So if Ron Paul is not the next president I won’t be blown away or even disappointed. But I’d like to be sure we don’t do another 2004. And I think electing most of the Dems and Reps would be doing that, electing more of the same. How much you want to bet if Hillary gets elected that the Patriot Act isn’t repealed, and the war doesn’t end?


  13. Posted by dataGuy on May 17, 2007 at 9:47 am

    I very much agree with you that Giuliani should not be given a free pass on his security credentials just because he happened to look in charge while on TV. The issue I’m raising is the statement: “Why should anyone think he’d do any better if he was President?” Not to put words in your mouth but even in your own reply, you point out that the executive branch did not share its’ data (not even with different parts at the Federal level, let alone NYC). I also agree with you that there are a number of things he could have done better while Mayor. I think it’s asking a lot to expect a local official to issue a warning or be able to preempt a specific event, launched from outside their jurisdiction, in the absence of full Federal support.

    As to your second point, I didn’t intend any disrespect. I don’t have a good answer as to why I prefer posting with a screen name. It’s interesting to think about it, as I take it for granted most times. Part of it is my personal usage history. While you were blazing a trail in blogging I was mucking about in forums, where part of the fun was having an interesting user name. Another facet is that my real name is not as uncommon as my screen name, so I think I have better continuity sticking with my screen name. I also don’t equate posting with a screen name to posting anonymously. The last item in my defense is that when submitting my comments, I did supply my real email address (of course you have no way to know that with out testing it) so I am willing to back up what I say.


  14. I’d vote for him.


  15. Posted by David on May 17, 2007 at 12:24 pm

    People who actively follow politics tend to look for heroes, even when they don’t exist (hence the inexpicable adoration for Obama, whose credentials for office seem to be an artful way of saying nothing of policy substance.) People fawning over Ron Paul are falling into that same trap. The output of Paul’s foreign policy vision is a result of some very twisted inputs – he primarily comes from the Charles Lindbergh tradition of US foreign policy, with all the dubious ethinic/racial stereotypes that entails. Howard Cronin seems to be aware of this.

    Don’t let a desperate desire for a form of “truth telling” about US foreign policy take you down some dark ideological paths. After all Dave, Pat Buchanan’s been saying the same things about Iraq and the Middle East for years… would you go work for him someday, too?


  16. Dave, I appreciate that you have pointed out Ron Paul’s views. My issue isn’t with him, but that the “media” only focuses on the top two candidates in the two major parties. People like Ron Paul, or Dennis Kucinich, never get any airtime, even though what they say isn’t any less important than the front runners. And don’t get me started on the other political parties, they NEVER get an audience. There are some very smart people out there, but because they don’t look good, don’t have a lot of money, or are backed by a ‘fringe’ party, never get to be heard. And a lot of them tell it like it is without the spin. If nothing else they should be heard in order to make the front runners uncomfortable and the voting populace more informed.

    But that may never happen. *sigh*


  17. Time is going really really really really slow right now!
    What phone number am I supposed to call to report time anomolies?
    I tried calling POP-CORN and telling the lady how slow time was going, but she just kept repeating the same time. It must be going slow for her too…


  18. thanks for posting that clip dave. that made my day.


  19. Hi Dave

    RE not caring whether GOPpers or Demos win:

    The part of me that’s a life-long independent voter agrees.

    The part of me that doesn’t want a 5th Supreme Court vote to uphold the Bush admin’s powergrab/torture policies doesn’t.

    That part trumps the first.

    But, yeah — Ron Paul’s the only fully fearless one among the GOPper prez candidates. Though McCain let a bit of his original integrity shine through as the only one of the group who won’t abide torture.

    — stan


  20. I too want a president who can think, reason, feel. I don’t want one who runs the country like a business, by the business and for the business. I don’t need any more a hero than someone who’s lived, loved, lost.


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