13 November, 2009

Happy Hour Discurso

Today's opining on the public discourse.

Ding-dong the wicked Dobbs is gone!
It was an unsustainable relationship. On the one hand, CNN presents itself as the "most trusted name in news." It wants to be the neutral, straight-down-the-middle, bias-free cable news network. On the other hand, CNN has been paying considerable sums to a clownish, xenophobic demagogue to host a daily news program. Something had to give.

Yesterday, something did.
Months ago the president of CNN/U.S., Jonathan Klein, offered a choice to Lou Dobbs, the channel's most outspoken anchor. Mr. Dobbs could vent his opinions on radio and anchor an objective newscast on television, or he could leave CNN.
For a time, Mr. Dobbs did tone down his TV rhetoric, but on Wednesday he made a more drastic decision: He chose opinion.
Mr. Dobbs told viewers that he was resigning from his CNN job immediately.

Details are sketchy about whether Dobbs took the leap or was shoved out the door, but the move would seem to help the network -- Dobbs was a near-constant source of embarrassment, and given his third-place finish in his timeslot, this isn't exactly a brutal blow for CNN. The network probably won't have any other on-air talent obsessing over the president's birth certificate, but that's not much of a loss.
All of you lefties who joined campaigns to ditch Dobbs, who signed petitions and excoriated his ass on blogs and websites, who never let up on CNN for a minute for the hypocrisy of calling themselves a trusted name in news while letting a Faux-News facsimile like Dobbs spout his fucktarded fanaticism on the air - all of you all, take a bow.  No, seriously.  Without your pressure, it's doubtful he would've left.  Good on yer.  Yes, we can sometimes make a difference.

I stopped watching CNN for years because of Dobbs and Beck.  It's just possible I can flip it on now without running the risk of running in to a frothing insane right-wing fucktard.  But the fact they defended Dobbs to the bitter end rather makes me think not just yet.  Well, that, and the fact that Wolf Blitzer just can't understand why our justice system actually allows the accused to mount an effective defense.

Since CNN's getting rid of its worst offenders, let's hope there'll be an encouraging effect on other networks.  ABC, for instance, really needs to do something about Brian Ross:
ABC's Brian Ross has a history of bizarre "scoops" (like this one, when he announced that Hillary Clinton had indeed been in the White House the day Monica went down on her knees). And yet, ABC News is still proud to have him as their chief investigative correspondent, for some odd reason.

Now he overreaches on yet another story, this one claiming Nidal Malik Hasan attempted to contact al Qaeda. You heard it all over the news, right? Via Gawker:
ABC News' Brian Ross has a breathtaking record of recklessly inaccurate, overhyped stories that don't live up to the headline. His scoop yesterday about Nidal Malik Hasan's "attempt to reach out to al Qaeda" was one of them.

So did he? Al-Awlaki is routinely described by the FBI and others as an al Qaeda supporter, and a fiery inciter of violence against infidels. And he was the imam at the Virginia mosque attended by two of the 9/11 hijackers, as well as Hasan. But while it's clear that Al-Awlaki is a bad guy, what's not clear is whether he's simply a propagandist or someone who actually operates as a part of al Qaeda. It's one thing for Hasan to have sent e-mails to someone who vocally supports al Qaeda, and quite another for him to have sent e-mails to al Qaeda itself, or to operatives actively involved in trying to kill people. Ross told us that, according to his sources, "Al-Awlaki is considered a recruiter," which is how he justified invoking the name of the terrorist network. We'll defer to him on that point.

But without knowing what the e-mails are about, can it really be known that Hasan's communications were "attempts to reach out"? The FBI didn't consider them as such. Ross didn't know the contents of the e-mails when he described them that way, but felt perfectly justified in doing so based solely on the knowledge that Hasan had sent the e-mails.

We asked Ross if he had tried to contact Al-Awlaki in reporting the story:


So you reached out to al Qaeda, then?

"To al Qaeda? No. I reached out to him. Oh. I see what you're saying."

Wow.  Just... wow.  This is their bestest investigative reporter, is it?  I've seen drunk high school dropouts do better.

Moving on to the overabundance of other stupid now... shit.  There's a crap-ton.  We're going to have to summarize, or we'll be here all day.

Lessee.  Marsha Blackburn, mis-representing the great state of Tennessee, thinks it's just good constituent services and helping the bipartisan dialogue along to call the President a socialist.

Rep. Steve Buyer, whose charitable foundation was more interested in sending him golfing than handing out scholarships, really shouldn't sit down for interviews with the CBS Evening News when he's this fucking bad at explaining himself.  I think this is a new high water mark for the show: they exposed Sarah Palin as a raving idiot, but they didn't manage to make her actually run out of an interview.  Kudos!

Gov. Rick Perry's doing his best to please the Teabagger base, saying Obama's "hellbent" on turning the U S of A into a socialist country, accusing the President of "punishing" Texas, and moreover telling wild stories about how the feds are dumping captured illegal immigrants in his great state.  Needless to say, he's either lying, stupid or both.  Can you credit this fucktard used to be a Democrat

Rep. Cao's risking the wrath of the Teabaggers by praising the Obama administration's response to the Gulf Coast's needs.  Maybe he's not worried because he sees the Teabaggers are eating their own.  Definitely trouble in Tealand, there.  Heh.  Popcorn, please!

ACORN's suing the government over that noxious bill of attainder that defunded them.  Good on them.  They should win - our Constitution leaves no doubt that such bills are unconstitutional.  Added bonus: Faux should start foaming at the mouth any moment.  That'll be entertaining.

If there were any doubts that Crazy Pete crossed a bridge too far, here's word that his loose lips could sink some ships:
Rep. Peter Hoekstra (R-Mich.), the ranking member on the House Intelligence Committee, confirmed to the Washington Post this week, on the record, that Nidal Malik Hasan had exchanged emails with Anwar al-Awlaki, a radical cleric. As MSNBC's Rachel Maddow reported Tuesday, it was a problematic revelation -- that federal officials had kept secret for a reason.

According to the GOP staff on House Intelligence Committee, they "do not know" if Hoekstra released classified information, but they're "guessing" his remarks weren't a problem.

Marc Ambinder followed up today with senior intelligence officials who said "there are concerns" about Hoekstra's loose lips. The Republican lawmaker, who is routinely briefed on some of the nation's most sensitive national security secrets, appears to have tipped a radical cleric to surveillance efforts and inadvertently confirmed "a sensitive capability that the N.S.A. regularly employs to collect intelligence."
A former intelligence official privy to details of the NSA's programs said that it "would appear to be the case" that Hoekstra divulged too much information.
I'm sure the rest of Congress is thrilled that Crazy Pete's big fat mouth has now given the intelligence community ammunition to say, "See?  We can't trust lawmakers with sensitive national security info, so fuck 'em when they request we share it with more than a trusted few."  Expect more fallout.

And, finally, one of the most outrageous fucking things I've ever heard:
One of the worst abuses in the international labor markets is the use of child labor. The most recent report on the issue by the International Labor Organization found that as of 2004 more than 218 million children were engaged in illegal work, as defined by international treaties. It’s estimated that 126 million of these children were engaged in hazardous work such as “mining or handling chemicals.”

In order to combat the issue, the Senate Finance Committee has included sections in S.1631, the Customs Facilitation and Trade Enforcement Reauthorization Act of 2009, that would ban the importation of goods made “with convict labor, forced labor, or indentured labor under penal sanctions.” Such a measure by the world’s largest importer would strike a crucial blow against the use of child and slave labor.

Business groups and their lobbyists, however, are not taking kindly to the measures. The D.C.-based business newsletter “Inside U.S. Trade” reports that business groups are “worried” about the effects of such a provision, and they expect to see industry lobbyists and foreign governments profiting from child labor to form an “ad hoc” coalition to oppose it:
Business groups are worried by the potential effects of provisions banning the import of all goods made with convict labor, forced labor, or forced or indentured child labor that were included in a customs bill sponsored by Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus (D-MT) and Ranking Member Charles Grassley (R-IA)
Business sources say this reporting requirement could cause DHS to more actively seek out imported products made with child labor, forced labor or convict labor. [...]
Sources conceded that this was a sensitive issue because industry groups do not want to be seen as opposing strict measures guarding against human rights abuses. However, one source did expect a push from lobbyists closer to the finance committee mark-up of the bill, and speculated that U.S. industry groups and foreign governments could form ad hoc coalitions to help send a united message.

Words fail.  Words fucking fail.  I can't believe these greedy shitbags are planning to form a coalition to advocate for child fucking labor.

I do hope we'll be told who's involved. I'll be more than happy to never buy products or services from those business ever again.

1 comment:

Cujo359 said...

Dobbs is gone from CNN. He'll be at Fox Business soon, though.