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Small Widget Spot
September 9, 2008

i laughed. i cried.

i laughed. i cried.
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why do we have to rely on our comedians to tell the truth about our politicians? this has to be one of the bravest (and funniest) things i’ve seen in a long time. pretty much nails the essence of john mccain in just over four minutes. if only mccain could watch this, realize what a fraud he is, and slink away quietly from the national stage. a man can dream, can’t he?

The Daily Show With Jon StewartMon – Thurs 11p / 10c
John McCain: Reformed Maverick
www.thedailyshow.com
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Posted in: politics
August 20, 2008

pain in the mccain

pain in the mccain
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it’s hard to imagine loathing someone more than i loathe dubya bush, but i’m almost there with john mccain. i’ve written before about what a pandering, lying, self-serving pathetic shell of a man he is—and that was in a letter written directly to the man. mccain’s mendacity is really no secret to anyone who does even a modicum of digging into “the real mccain.” but his actions and words of late are enough to make you wonder: just who are the idiots out there who would consider electing this man our president?

a few recent mccain highlights:

sometimes it feels as if we’re down the rabbit hole when it comes to mccain. what is so obvious to anyone with a brain just doesn’t seem to register with nearly 40 percent of americans. that’s partly due to the abdication of responsible reporting by the traditional media. but it’s also apparently due to the fact that we really are a nation of idiots.

andrew sullivan, who apparently has grown very very tired of trying to defend any of his fellow conservatives, wrote a brilliant piece in the atlantic yesterday. here’s an excerpt, but please read the whole post. his logic is infallible. his points are devastating. and his apparent loathing of mccain very nearly matches mine.

In all the discussion of John McCain’s recently recovered memory of a religious epiphany in Vietnam, one thing has been missing. The torture that was deployed against McCain emerges in all the various accounts. It involved sleep deprivation, the withholding of medical treatment, stress positions, long-time standing, and beating. Sound familiar?

According to the Bush administration’s definition of torture, McCain was therefore not tortured.

Cheney denies that McCain was tortured; as does Bush. So do John Yoo and David Addington and George Tenet.


so, since mccain agrees with bush/cheney on torture, can we please stop talking about mccain’s time as a POW? according to the man himself, what he endured wasn’t really torture after all. what is torturous, however, is watching mccain’s sorry excuse for a campaign. hell, at least one of his fellow POWs thinks he’d make a horrible president.

Posted in: politics
July 1, 2008

oh FISA, dear FISA

oh FISA, dear FISA
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as disappointing as some of obama’s recent moves to the middle have been, none is as galling as the decision to support the FISA bill currently in the senate. i understand the political expedience of shoring up against that faux "he’s not tough on national security" argument the idiots across the aisle are determined to gin up should obama vote against the bill. i get it.. i really do.

but i just wish that the one candidate we have who represents even a modicum of honesty and integrity (and obama clearly has more than that) would just stand up and tell it like it is. bush broke the law and has been spying on us. with the help of the telecom companies. who have, in turn, given lots of money to elected representatives to keep their mouths shut. and the american people deserve to find out exactly what has transpired over the past seven years. period. paragraph.

no bill gets passed until bush is out of office and the facts can be brought into the sunlight. that’s it. no compromise. skip the speeches on patriotism and the mild smackdowns of truthtellers like wes clark. save the discussion of faith-based initiatives for another day. stand up (and bring russ feingold with you) and tell us that truth and honesty still mean something. anything. even in a quixotic situation that, may they burn in hell for it, democrats have enabled.

barring the unlikely scenario of the above unfolding, olbermann seems to have taken in at least some of glenn greenwald’s points and internalized them into a pretty compelling if/then/else statement. you can see it here:

May 21, 2008

keith olbermann is a big meany! waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa!

keith olbermann is a big meany! waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa!
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if you haven’t seen steve doocy—one of fox news’ talking douchebags (or is that doochebags?)—in action before, this should serve as a wonderful introduction. i enjoy dashing a letter off now and then and felt inspired to write after seeing the clip below. enamored as i am with my own deliciousness, i have decided to share said letter with my loyal big micro readers. (the original keith ‘worst person’ clip that doocy finds so offensive—oh my!—follows the letter text below. happy wednesday.


dearest fox friends:

i’ve seen the clip of little peter doocy and his sad, smirk-laden attempt at ‘reporting.’ apparently peter is an apt pupil when it comes to aping his father’s dubious ‘journalistic’ style. the apple doesn’t fall too far from the tree when it comes to regurgitating GOP talking points and framing questions in that oh-so-familiar faux news manner.

doocy senior should be less concerned with what olbermann thinks and says about his son and pay a bit more attention to his own parenting responsibilities. after all, it was daddy that set up his kid for ridicule and then had the subsequent effrontery to get his panties in a bunch when the inevitable ridicule occurred. peter is certainly entitled to act like an idiot; it’s de rigeur for many college-aged kids. but dressing up that idiocy as “youth-oriented commentary” under the guise of objectivity deserves to be called out for what it is: a transparent act of nepotistic parroting. and papa doocy’s outrage would be merely laughable if it weren’t so pathetic in its tin-ear shrillness.

here’s a fact (and i realize that facts don’t have much currency over there): olbermann’s comments were far more fair and balanced than peter’s ‘broadcasting’ debut or steve’s ongoing parade of blowhard punditry. as long as nepotism and/or cronyism remain the guiding principles for both faux news and the bush administration, doocy shouldn’t be surprised when incompetence and spin are identified as such. if steve doesn’t want someone to “pick on his kid,” then he shouldn’t be putting that kid on the airwaves.

certainly there’s an element of schadenfreude for those of us out here in the reality-based community in watching the murdoch lemmings get apoplectic as the propaganda machine becomes more and more exposed for what it is. but protestations like doocy’s are what generate the real belly laughs and guffaws.

keep it up. you’ve helped to create the dire situation in which this country finds itself; you owe us a few laughs at the very least.


and here’s keith’s ‘worst person in the world’ segment honoring smirky pete.

Posted in: politics
March 30, 2008

it tolls for thee

it tolls for thee
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bell x1
café du nord
san francisco, ca
2008-03-26

sometimes i look for a show just to fill a gap in the calendar. such was the case when i decided to see Bell X1 (hate the name, btw) after reading the café du nord calendar email recently. not sure what made me click through to read about this band, but i did and the blurb was interesting enough for me to click through to the myspace page and listen to a few tracks. i liked what i heard and decided to fill up wednesday night, march 26. oddly, the opening band had a six degrees of separation (more like three) connection to me and my band from back in the day. i was more familiar with the two musicians—blake hazard and jack dragonetti—that comprise the submarines than i was with Bell X1 (really don’t like that name), but unfortunately i didn’t make it in to see anything but the final minute of the submarines’ set. next time.

so, Bell X1. they’re irish. and, of course, any irish band is going to invite comparisons with other irish bands (i don’t know why this is, but it is). but i don’t think i was imagining things when i heard traces of hothouse flowers (the rolling piano licks that drive some of the tunes) and U2 (some anthemic choruses on a bed of shimmering guitar lines) throughout the night. what really struck me on occasion, however, was the similarity of paul noonan’s voice to that of gord downie of the tragically hip. in fact, i didn’t make the connection until just now listening back as i write this. it drove me crazy all night during the show.

other musical reference points are midlake (again, the piano might be the common ground, but there’s a shared overall vibe as well) and oddly, at times, siren-era roxy music. there was even a moment in “flame” where the vocal melody line was aping the talking heads’ “girlfriend is better.” (and noonan had quoted three lines from “once in a lifetime” earlier in the set) and oddly, i found myself thinking of “axe victim”-era be bop deluxe during “white water song.” together, all of these aural reference points, influences or not, make a pretty interesting stew. irish stew, to be precise.

i like this band. there is an earnestness that doesn’t feel calculated or silly—just honest. and though i wholeheartedly recommend and support changing the band name, it isn’t likely given the amount of success they’ve had in ireland and europe (i was reminded of this by bbernardini over on DIME).

here’s the second song of the set, “My First Born for a Song.”

Posted in: music
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