I came across this facinating essay in City Journal's Autumn issue entitled City Journal's Autumn issue entitled "We're Not Losing". It's a long, thoughtful look at the Meida wars being waged. The central thesis argues about why FOX News is successful, why "South Park" is actually anti-establishment towards the liberal establishment, and that the regardless of whether the media is really liberal or not, their obvious contempt for middle America is killing their ratings.
Read the article, as I agree almost wholehartedly. I won't argue "South Park" is Republican, and neither does the author. Co-creator Matt Stone is quoted as saying "I hate Conservatives, but I fucking hate Liberals". The show is actually very libertarian. The term "South Park Republican" reflects the fact that on campuses, more and more young people are identifying with South Park's Anti-PC stance. As campus administartions bend over backwards to stifle any "potentially offensive" speech, young, thoughful Americans are wondering if this is for the best. Since the Left embraces speech codes on campus, the Young Libertarian/Republican types (PJ O'Rourke, my college-era hero, used the term "Republican Party Reptile) are drawn more towards the GOP which doesn't endorse college speech codes. It's interesting how the "establishment" in the 60's at college's led to leftist organization, and now that those same leftists run the campuses, it's leading to right-wing organization.
The article also shows that as much as it is "in vogue" to blast FOX News, the network is demolishing CNN on a regular basis. The reactions of CNN's stuffy, unappealing anchor Aaron Brown offer an insight into an elistists mind, and makes you realize that for a middle-class American, even if you don't believe in media bias, you definitly think that Aaron Brown thinks he's better than you, and American's don't like to feel that way. For a good example, watch Brown try to read headlines from midwest newspapers at the end of his nightly show. It's like watching a car wreck. The man is so out of touch, it's bizzare.
Media Bias Isn't a New Concept, and it isn't Conservative Bias
Anyway, you can get a good idea from reading the article as to why, after 30 years of Conservatives talking about media bias, the Left has finally, desperately counterattacked with books like "What Liberal Media" and Al Franken's mean, spiteful little rant. In "What Liberal Media", Eric Alterman writes that in the 80's a GOP startegist said that pushing the liberal bias angle was a good political move. Alterman uses just this to "prove" that the Media Bias argument is a myth. Sadly, Altermen ignores that since the rise of Ronald Reagan in the 1960's, the media has tilted left. Reagan's letters have just been released in a terrificially editied book, and in them, going back to his Gubanatorial days in California, Reagan had been complaining about how the media misrepresented him. It wasn't until Rush Limbaugh's rise that the idea of using the Media Bias angle really worked for Republicans. A question that Franken, Alterman, et al have never been ables to accurately answer is if the media skews to the right, why did Limbaugh become so popular beating up on media elites with a leftist slant? The answer is, despite what one may think of Limbaugh, he tapped into legitimate anger on the right that their views were represented accurately in the press. Alterman attempts to explain this to "corporate media brainwashing", but when he writes about it, it comes off as if he's saying Americans are stupid, and only he has picked up on the REAL corporate bias.
The thing is, if Corporate Media has been a problem for as long as Alterman says it's been, why didn't he write this book in the 90's or the 80's. The fact is, he wrote it now because the left is legitmately afraid that the people aren't satisfied with the news they get from the networks, and go to FOX News. He and Joe Conason both push the Corporate Media Myth with very little fact, and use examples that only seem to prove not that the media isn't biased or that it is biased to the right, but that it's not really biased ENOUGH for them. On his blog, Alterman points to ANY positive story on a Republican as proof that the media is tilted to the right. Then he brands the person a "Media Whore". The "proof" that the media is a corporate run juggernaut is culled not from any trend, but by the accusation that "You're only as liberal as the person who signs your check". While he offers scant evidence for this, he states it as fact.
The Corproate Media Bias myth has taken hold amongst leftists desperate to get back their hold on the news. Salon.com parrots it every day. On left-wing blogs there is the automatic assumption that anyone who dares say that FOX news isn't THAT right-wing(which it's not, if you look at it and don't mock it) is in on the conspiracy. FOX anchors do have the guts to admit they are conservative, but they also say that doesn't affect their coverage. "Uncle" Walter Cronkite still won't say the media is liberal, though he undermines Alterman when he says that reporters are "more humane", which means, of course, that conservatives are inhuman, which is something he will say on the lecture circuit.
No one in legitimate online reporting agrees with the Corporate Bias theory. Slate.com, the online journal of liberal thought is owned by Microsoft, the biggest and baddest corporation of them all, and they take on all comers. The New Republic, the left-leaning , well-respected journal of political opinion rejects the thesis as well. These people are, of course, now "Media Whores" to Alterman and his devoted band of followers. If they happen to publish a well-written article attacking Bush policy, as they have done in the past, Alterman will link to it and chuckle gleefully, but if the next week they publish something he disagrees with, they are whores again. Same with Conason.
There are biases in the news, they tend in reporting to tilt left, not hard in most cases, but it's there. The anchors are unrepenant liberal elites, save Dan Rather who is simply insane. The Corporate Media Myth hasn't cought on outside far-left blogs and "news" sites like Indymedia because it simply isn't true. It's a desperate tactic that was just dreamed up out of whole cloth. The Liberal Bias belief came not from a sudden realization that the left was gaining adherents. It came from 3 decades of watching conservatives get beat up on TV and in the news on a daily basis. Thankfully, only the FAR left clings to the Corporate Bias Myth. Reasonable people can disagree about the nature of the news. But the Far Left is not reasonable nor is it willing to argue about it. It shouts, drowning out coherent thought. It sticks in my craw, but as long as "South Park" keeps beating up on sacred cows, I'll at least be able to laugh. I haven't heard a leftist(not liberal) do that in a while.
:: C.M. Burns 10/30/2003 11:33:00 AM [+] ::
:: Wednesday, October 29, 2003 ::
Bill Clinton Lies A Lot-Still
Bill Clinton has made some noise recentley in that he had claimed to have told President Bush that the biggest threat to the Nation was Osama bin Laden in an "exit interview" the day Dubya took over. It seems that Clinton has been lying, again, about his record, at least according to NRO's Rich Lowry. You can claim this is more Clinton Bashing, but Bubba's been going out of his way to tell peopl he knew all about the threat al-Qaida posed, that he told Bush, and that Bush ignored him. Clinton said that makes him "sad". See, he still feels your pain, even out of office. OK, that's one lie about his legacy that doesn't hold up, and Lowry uses Clinton's own officials to disprove it. Unless Sandy Berger lied to Congress about the Clinton team having no plan to fight al-Qaida, Clinton really is worried about this in a way his aplogists have been trying to deflect.
So that's one big lie. Here's a small one. Tony Blair was recentley diagnosed with a heart program. Clinton said Blair told him about it years ago, and that Clinton called to inquire on his health. Now, I have no doubt Clinton called to inquire on Blair's health. They were friends. Makes sense. But according to 10 Downing Street, this is the first time the PM's heart has ever troubled him. Now, maybe Bill is thinking of something else, but I don't think Blair has ever even been in the hospital for ANY recurring condition before. It's a small, white lie in which Clinton shows again that he is compassionate, feels pain, is a good person. It goes back to him wanting to be liked. And it shows a pattern that Clinton is willing to say anything to give people a positive impression on him, and I'd bet he'd lie about knowing how dangerous al-Qaida was and blaming Dubya for ignoring it to be seen as a good person and to help out his party in 2004. Yet another reason why I simply don't like the man. Doesn't he understand that respect is more important than likeability?
:: C.M. Burns 10/29/2003 11:52:00 AM [+] ::
Where were you in 1929?
I'm guessing no one reading this was yet born, but exactly 74 years ago today, the Stock Market collapsed on what became known as Black Tuesday, October 29, 1929. Then there was the depression and what not. Pencil & apple sales were up, but so were soup lines. But America prevailed. Now, American's are again carrying a lot of credit debt. So if the economy collapses again, I'm blaming college students and those SOB's at Best Buy for selling all those wonderful goodies. Oh, it may be your fault if you ever downloaded a song, too. But since the Apocalypse Watch is into high gear, what with a giant solar flare headed this way, I think we may not live to see it, and if we do survive, well, only roving "Hell Towns" will exist, where mutants and monsters will be fought back by men with names like "Snake" and "Larry", armed only with the remians of gattling guns. Gasoline will become the new currency, and the laws of Thunderdome will rule. And all because, back in 1929, your great-grandfather just HAD to overinvest. Thanks for nothing, jerks.
:: C.M. Burns 10/29/2003 11:11:00 AM [+] ::
Night & Day Views of the DC Protest-From the Left!
On Monday, Michelle Goldberg of Salon wrote a withering attack on the leaders and some of the participants of the International ANSWER-led "Bring the Troops Home, Now" protest. She entitled the piece "Dazed & Confused" and showed that while everyone there opposed the war and the occupation(I prefer the term "rebuilding"), most at the march did, in fact, not want to bring the troops home immediately. It was only the extreme groups who really do hate America, like ANSWER and the other Marxist/Socialist groups wanted an immediated, unfettered withdrawal. Ms. Goldberg, of the left herself, was intellectually honest in wondering how the anti-Bush policy movement could regain it's footing and put together a real message.
Today, Salon.com offers up two pages of reader feedback on the articleon this page which does not require any kind of registration. It's illuminated reading. Those who agree with Ms. Goldberg make intelligent points I disagree with but are at least thought out. In fact, one offers up a plan that calls for impeaching Bush and putting in "real" leadership to help Iraq. I guess she means Dick Cheney. Or maybe Dennis Hastert. It's not clear. But there are also those that accuse her of "smearing" the movement. Really. No thought at all. And ANSWER is all she smeared. She goes out of her way to credit the military families and mainstream types who opposed the war. Again, it shows that the far left IS dazed and confused, and that sort of attack only solidifies Ms. Goldberg's thesis about the drifting movement. It's illuminating to read the thinking and see the disconnect between reality among the extreme types. Also, on the second page, an intrepid reader points out that ANSWER calls the 1947 Berlin Airlift, probably one of America's finest moments, a "military intervention". He takes them to school for their insanity. Anyway, you can read Ms. Goldberg's article if you get the daypass. At least then you'll see whay the media didn't cover the march much-there simply wasn't much to cover in the way of constructive news.
:: C.M. Burns 10/29/2003 10:33:00 AM [+] ::
:: Tuesday, October 28, 2003 ::
I was going to post all these interesting things today and then I saw the Disco Squirrels sing "Disco Sauna", and it didn't seem important anymore. Maybe tomorrow.
:: C.M. Burns 10/28/2003 04:32:00 PM [+] ::
:: Monday, October 27, 2003 ::
Anti-War Watershed Moment: I See My First Real 60's-Era Hippies!
Saturday in Washington International ANSWER, the front group for the extra hard core socialist Workers World Party, held a rally in DC to call for the immediate withdrawal of troops from Iraq. They also wanted other things. I was walking out of the Smithsonian Museum of American History after my docent training session, and a friend and I saw the front of the marchers, on their way to the Pentagon, chanting things. We stood and watched, talked to some cops and others who were watching, and waited for the marches to pass so we could cross the street. According to various chants, groups of marchers also wanted "death to Isreal", "Free Mumia", "US out of the Middle East", "US Hands of Iran"(I didn't know we were touching them...yet), etc. All fairly stupid an not at all thought out positions. Reasonable people could disagree about the war before it began, and reasonable people can disagree on how much money and time we should spend on rebuilding Iraq and what to do in the middle east. These were not reasonable people. There were a large number of Kusinich supporters, which means that they are at least slighlty as crazy as he is, yet no Kerry, Lieberman, or even Gephardt signs, as they all voted for the war. Traitors to the cause, I guess. The big target was and will remain Dubya. They wanted him impeached, investigatred, prosecuted for war crimes, and possible used as a tackling dummy. All the groups wanted that. I got a kick out of it. It seemed like the charicature of a 60's anti-war march. And then I saw the old hippies! Like an ornithologist spotting a rare bird, it was an exciting moment. There were a handful of them, wearing tie-dies that had never seen the inside of washing machine since, well, ever. Long gray hair and mustaches and beards, and collectors-quality peace pins from the good old days when the marches had valid points. Apparently, Andrew Sullivan ran into a few and his quick aside to them is priceless. Anyway, it's sad these people are so focused on their hatre of Bush, and aren't proposing any reasonable alternatives to the Administrations plan. Pulling the troops out of Vietnam on a quick basis was at least a logistic possibility back in the 60's. Abandoning Iraq now is just...too dumb for words.
:: C.M. Burns 10/27/2003 09:38:00 AM [+] ::
:: Wednesday, October 22, 2003 ::
The Schiavo Case: Right to Die or Legal Murder?
I finally found something that really stirs my interest. It's the case of Terry Schiavo, the Florida woman who has been brain damaged and living off a feading tube(but no other life support) since a heart attack-like ailment in 1990. Since then, her husband and legal guardian, Michael Schiavo, has been trying to get her feeding tube removed in accordance to what he say would be her final wishes. Her imediate family ahve been fighting this out in court for years, and last week her feeding tube was removed after a Florida judge ordered it.
On it's face, it seems like a right to die, living will, DNR case. But the woman had no living will which would make the matter open and shut. While her husband, who originally fought to keep her alive, says she once told him she would never want to live in a condition in which machines keep her alive, he has no evidence other than the collaboration of his brother's shaky testimony to it. Shiavo, it should be noted, is engaged to another woman and at the time of his initiating the request to remove the tube, he stood to inherit a large sum of money from her life insurance. While he no longer do so, he has allowed his attorney to turn this into a right to die case.
Yesterday, the Florida Senate passed a bill which would allow the governor to order the tube back in, and Gov. Jeb Bush signed and acted on it. Now, it seems, Michael Schiavo has barred his wife's family from visiting her as this story claims. You can learn alot about this case just from reading the story. The family claims that Teri is not vegatative, responds to them, and with proper therapy could learn to feed herself. The husband's team produced doctors that said she would never ne really "alive" again. The family produced doctors that said that if Michael Schiavo had allowed therapy to beging when the chance was first available, she could be eating on her own by now, and that there is still a chance that she could. Teri's parents and family believe that as long as their is a chance that she could still feed herself and be independent of any machine, it should be tried. It is also important to note that this is not a case where you simply pull the plug, the support stops, their is no brain activity, and the person dies quickly, probably unaware of what has happened. No, Teri Schiavo would starve to death in about 10 days. Starving to death is not a painless, simple process. It is an active denial of help to a still fuctioning human being.
Wait, you say, Teri Schiavo is brain dead, a vegetable. That's what the media has presented her as, and that is how many see her. But last week I caught an interview with her brother. He had videotape that the family allegedly had to smuggle out of the hospital and that the judge in the case refused to allow into evidence. It shows that Teri appears what we would call brain damaged, possibly extremely retarded, but alive, smiling, and interacting with the family. It is not the vegitative state that the media was reporting. In fact, the brother was very angry that the media continued to call her a coma case. I myself don't know that much about comas, but I always assumed a person in a brain dead coma would never wake, and would just lie there forever. This is clearly not the case. After seeing this video, I believe that to cast this as a right to die, DNR case is wrong, and that the media is simplifying and distorting the image into making this woman a poster child for the right to die movement. It seems to be a case where a man has asked a court to allow him to de facto murder a wife who has been damaged mentally but still functions.
What makes the case more galling for me is the way Michael Schiavo's attorney has been characterizing the case. He calls the reinsertion of the tube a "terrible tragedy for Teri Schiavo". He knows that his defendent looks pretty scummy if the surface is scratched, and has therefore decided to make it a "right to die" case. The "Right to Die" movement is probably as misnamed as any other in history. Since all living things die, it is not a "right" being asserted but a natural fact. The woman will die. Nothing can stop that. The movement is really about being able to get Doctor-assisted suicide legalized. These are all touchy subjects. It's morbid, and phrases such as "dying with dignitry" are used to deny the fact that it's suicide. I always considered suicide a cowards way out. I understand the urge, and I understand that these people are in pain, but I can't quite condone it. If they want to kill themselves, fine, pay someone to sneak them some cyianide or something. Don't put it on doctors.
But that is besides the point here, as much as Mr. Schiavo's attorney claims otherwise. There is no living will, no stated, legal way to say this person would want to die if this condition arose. All we have are the suspect motives of her husband. I say, if she was a vegitable, letting her die would be fine. You flip the switch, that's it. But forced starvation is certainly not dying with dignity, it's not slipping away before cancer or AIDS takes you away. It is simply cruel. And the lawyer paints this starvation as kind. In describing how she was given food again, he says ``She was literally absconded from her death bed in the middle of her dying process.'' These are dangerous words to use. "absconded", " her dying process". This is not a case I would use if I believed in the Right to Die movement. There is a valuablr debate to be had over it, but this is not a landmark case or a shift the paradigim or whatever. It just looks like court-sanctioned murder. Again her lawyer says "It is simply inhumane and barbaric to interrupt her death process.'' Isn't it also inhumane to starve someone to death? I mean, this whole thing is just so ugly. It's a football that both sides in the "right to die" fight should avoid like the plague. If there's a chance at some rehabilitation, use it. I oppose the death penalty because the mere chance that an innocent person could be killed is too much for my concience. If we start giving up hope on patients like Teri Schialvo before all methods are exhausted, what does that say about us? I say it make us inhumane and barbaric. This is an ugly case with too many gray areas. And the posibility for judicial activism is too great. The Supreme Court made a mistake with Roe v. Wade by cutting off the national debate in the legislature. The Florida courts would just be throwing another can of gas on the fire if they legislated by proxy this way. An ugly, sad case.
:: C.M. Burns 10/22/2003 02:24:00 PM [+] ::
:: Tuesday, October 21, 2003 ::
CBS, NBC, and Her Parents Exploit Elizabeth Smart. I'm Not Surprised
The Smart family of Utah is not happy with CBS, which shelled out a ton of money to make a movie on the kidnapping and return of their daughter by a religious nutjob homeless person that the Smarts hired to fix their roof. Apparently, concerned that Katie Couric's interview with Ms. Smart which airs this Friday would steal the thunder of CBS's own interview, aired their interview of Ed Smart, the neglectful father who should be in prison in my opinion, three weeks ahead of schedule. It turns out that the Smart's wanted the Couric interview to be the only one on the air when the launch their book chronicling their exploitation of their daughter...no mean their experience during the kidnapping. The general story is here. Couric and NBC did not pay for their interview, but their ratings will take a hit since CBS has now aired a Smart family interview first. Couric defended her interview of Ms. Smart saying that she asked no damaging questions. Of course not. She's a little girl. If Elizabeth Smart was a kidnapped GOP Representative who was taken by the Taliban, she might ask her if she thought she deserved to be kidnapped, but since Ms. Smart is a blameless child with negelctful parents, no hard questions will be asked. I want hard questions asked of Mr. Smart. I want he and his wife in prison. They are riding their daughters traumatic kidnapping to millions, and now are suing CBS or threatening to, because CBS tried to use an interview it paid them for to one-up NBC. If I was Elizabeth Smart, I'd take all the money and disown my parents, quickly. This whole thing is sick. Ed Smart should be beaten with rubber hoses and thrown in a vat of lemon juice after being covered in paper cuts. He threatend Rep. James Sensenbrenner of Ohio, chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, because Sensenbrenner wanted to put together solid legislation to make the national Amber Alter bill powerful, while Smart wanted something he could throw up in the Media's face to deflect his own responsibility. I hate this man. I pity his poor daughter. She has been used and abused for so long. We should leave her alone, NBC & CBS should leave he alone, and her horrible parents should be stripped of the money they have made of this and thrown in prison. God, these people piss me off. Has ANY good come of this? It makes me sick.
:: C.M. Burns 10/21/2003 04:01:00 PM [+] ::
Why I've Posted Nothing Political in Forever
To the two members of my family who read this blog and the various handful who actually check it, I'd like to apologize for not writing anything political lately. No fun rants. No partisanship. Nothin'. Well, lately, nothing interesting has happened. Oh, important things have happened, but nothing interesting, as in "I can whine and bitch about it and call Dick Gephardt mean names" interesting. I could comment about the bizzaro-world that Wesley Clark lives in, or talk about the International ANSWER goons who are coming to DC this weekend to demand the immediated end of the occupation of Iraq. I'm sure if that happened their next plan would be to have Cuba, China, and North Korea handle the transitional government with Slobodan Milosovic as the head of the operation. Seriously though, it's been a political drought. Nothing has caught my attention. Rush & pills have been done to death everywhere, and since I don't listen to Rush anymore or care about him all that much, I really have no comment. The Gregg Easterbrook anti-semitisim, ESPN.com, Kill Bill thing has had some traction, but I don't know Easterbrooks work that well, and as you all know I hate ESPN.com for their Boston bias. So I have no comment there. Dubya's in Asia, no big headlines there. Yet. I will get a chance to express my views, possibly on TV, as tomorrow I'm taking part in a taped focus group about politics for pollster Frank Luntz, who's got a show on MSNBC. That could be worthwhile. I hope they ask me about Howard Dean or John Kerrey. I also have actual piositive things to say about John Edwards. I've got some stuff that will GUARANTEE a clip on the show. I'll blog about that on Thursday. Right now, all I care about is that lunch is in 45 minutes, Indiana Jones is on DVD, and 24 starts in a week. Sigh. Oh well. By the way, if there is any justice in the universe a meteor will destroy ProPlayer stadium, the Yankees, the Marlins and their fans during the 7th inning tonight. Just because neither team deserves to be there, and I'd hate to see Yankee Stadium destroyed. Too much history.
:: C.M. Burns 10/21/2003 11:17:00 AM [+] ::
DeNiro Has Cancer
Robert DeNiro, one of my favorite actors, has been diagnosed with Prostate Cancer. If you pray, pray for the man. That's no way to go. Thankfully he got a early diagnosis and his prospects are good. Since it may turn out just to be a minor problem, perhaps this is some higher powers way of telling him to stop making shitty movies.
:: C.M. Burns 10/21/2003 10:20:00 AM [+] ::
Kobe Case Another Dark Chapter in Sports
The Kobe Bryant case pains me. Bryant is probably the best talent in the NBA, and probably was the most likeable star in the league since MJ's glory days in the early 90's. As opposed to other young players, Bryant seemed focused on improving his game, was respectful of the older players who could teach him things, and seemed like a generally decent human being. Although I stopped following basketball after MJ left the Bulls(that's a whole 'nother trauma), I followed Kobe a bit. This was a high school kid who after being drafted went to the Prom with his High School girlfriend. He was raw and talented, and unlike other young stars, was eager to learn. If you want to look at how kids coming into the NBA should act, look to Kobe, not LaBron James, who was suddenly worth more than everyone I know put together before he'd even played in a pro game, and acted like it, too. Kobe was pure class.
Then, came the Rape charge. I've been around long enough to know that public figures get accused of stuff all the time that simply isn't true. But the charge wasn't coming out of LA in a tabloid. It was coming from a small Colorado town form an anonymous victim, and the police were taking it very seriously. To me, Rape is about the worst crime imaginable. I can't fathom it. Really, I can't. While I understand motives for murder, I can't grasp why someone would violate another person like that. Especially someone like Kobe Bryant, who is rich, famous, and could probably have all sorts of willing females at his beck and call who would let him do whatever he wanted and then some. Plus, he's married, and call me an old softy, but I really, really don't aprove of adultury. Sure, everyone does it you say. That doesn't mean I have to approve of it or even accept it. So Kobe had definitly broken his marriage vows, and may have violated a woman in a terrible way while doing it. I was hoping it was wrong, that Kobe, while he had cheated, at least didn't commit the heinous act. Sadly, I now feel that he has, and it's thanks to his legal defense.
Reading National Review Online this morning, I cam across an article by Andrew Peyton Thomas, a Phoenix Attorney. He recapped the pre-trial hearing, has been following it, and Kobe's defense team is using the disgusting tactic of smearing the victim. There were signs this might happen. After the initial charge, rumors would pop up in tabloids about the girl's mental health, about her sexual activities. Unnamed "friends" would smear her in the tabloids. It was sick. Then the pre-trial hearing came along, which Thomas calls a usually quick formality to see if enough evidence exists to go to trial. Many though that the defense would not ask for one, and go to the case and try it before the jury. But Kobe's lawyers decided to turn it into a referendum on the victim. It didn't work, and Kobe will now stand trial, and his defense will probably be offensive and disgusting, although perfectly legal. It may even work. But can't there be another way to defend your client without resorting to bashing the victim? You can call her motive's into question without essentially calling her a slut, which is what the defense implied. You certainly shouldn't repeatedly say her name after the judge has issued a gag order. In an actual funny thing to come out of this tragedy, and one of the few funny, relevant things Saturday Night Live has done recentley, on Weekend Update, anchor Tina Fey slammed Kobe lead attorney Pamela Mackey and used her name repeatedly and the name of her firm. Apparently, the nation responded by deluging the firm with phone calls. A very small "heh" for that.
Anyway, with this kind of defense, it seems to me that Kobe is guilty. And if he is, he should not be coddled like we coddle some celebs. He should do hard time. I know women who've been raped. Some are never the same. All are emotionally scarred for life. So Kobe should go to jail. But that might not be enough. Pro Athletes, as much as Charles Barkley protests, are role models. They really are. Kids love them. We have made them into larger than life heros, and Kobe was one of the best examples of how to wear that mantle. For that, I think perhaps the NBA should ban Kobe for life if he is found guilty. Never let him play again. I don't see what good could come of it, and it would send a message to money-obsessed agents, players, and owners that this kind of behavior will not be tolerated or accepted. It's a horrible way to force that into the Pro mindset, especially in the NBA, where you can basically get away with anything and come back to a huge contract. No endorsement deals for Kobe, no new contracts, nothing. If he's a sex offender, he should suffer the inglorious fates of all the other sex offenders before him. He can be forgiven, yes, by all means, but he forfited his right to play pro ball the second he forced himself on that woman. And his lawyers are tarnishing the law and reinforcing stereotypes about lawyers that hurt the justice system in the long run. While their actions should not get them disbarred, it should, if there is any justice, lead to the collapse of their law practices due to lack of clients. They crossed a line. And I am sick over it.
(regarding my Ah-nold support in the face of his allegations-One, no charges have been brought against him, two, the release of the material by the LA Times was so highly suspect that it has yet to be collaborated, and three, if he did something he can be prosecuted for, he should be. So far, no SUBSTANTIVE criminal activity has been reported. Just allegations at a suspect time in the campaign from a newspaper that was esentially a Gray Davis PR machine. Ah-nold did say he had done stupid things in the past and apologized, but mentioned nothing criminal.)
:: C.M. Burns 10/21/2003 10:02:00 AM [+] ::
:: Monday, October 20, 2003 ::
ESPN's Stupid Boston Fixation
I swear, no more baseball postings after this one. I'm just writing to complain about the stupid BoSox fixation that ESPN.com's Page 2 suffers from. Their coverage of the LCS games was primarily focused on Boston. Sure, Bill Simmons, the Sports Guy, is a Boston guy, and as I wrote about the Curse, I said he nailed the Cubs/Red Sox fan attitude perfectly. It's just that all the rest of their writers focused on the Sox, as well, except for one Chicago fan and one comic piece about Ferris Buehelr as the Fan who cost us Game 6. Everything else was about poor old Boston. Even I got to the point that I almost wanted the Yankees to win. Almost. Anyway, I bring it up because of the pro-Boston bias of the Page2 list of the most painful losses in baseball history. Number one is, of course, the BoSox loss in game 6 of the 1986 World Series. The Bucker Game. No complaints here. Nothing could hurt anyone more. But 1A, which by all accounts should be game 6 of the 2003 NLCS where the Cubs failed, it's game 7 of the 2003 ALCS, when Pedro blew it. I say Bullshit! The Cubs game 6 collapse was so much more bizzare and awful and meant so much more. I'm not saying it's 1A, I'm saying it's number 2. There 1A should really be at best 3, where they put the Cubs. Only the anti-Cubs media(here comes a new conspiracy theory!)that ESPN represents could put the Sox game 7 loss, which wasn't a collapse so much as bad management, against the Cubs game 6 loss. Plus, the 1984 Cubs losing 3 straight in the NLCS should be higher than the Indian's loss to the Marlin's in Game 7 of the Series in 1997. Just to prove the BoSox preference, 4 of the most awful losses, according to ESPN involve the Red Sox. These people are transparently biased. I want my pity! Of course, this is an ESPN page 2 who's readers actually thought that the awful new Broncos Unifroms are better than the classic Red Wings sweater and that the even worse powder blue Chargers "classic" uniform was better than Cubs classic blue stripes. Hell, in the final round, their readers picked the just-designed-8-years-ago Bronco's disaster over the Michigan Wolverines so classic it's had no changes in 60 years helmet and uniform. Idiots. I hate ESPN. Don't get me started on that Bob Knight biopic.
:: C.M. Burns 10/20/2003 04:44:00 PM [+] ::
Apocalypse Watch Back On: Couple Weds at Wal-Mart
My apocalypse watch officially ended with the last out of Game 7 of the NLCS. Once the Cubs were eliminated, they could not face a Red Sox team that at the time had just survived a Game 6 in New York. The possibility that both cursed teams would face each other was removed, and the balance and order of the universe was restored. Sure Ah-nold was governor, but given how awful Gray Davis was and the fact that the California Democratic Party collapsed into infighting and backstabbing in the last few weeks had as much to do with that as anything else. Plus, it's California. Crazy California stuff should mean nothing to the rest of the world. It is a universe unto itself. So all was right with the world
This balance, sadly, lasted all of 4 days. A couple that met at Wal-Mart, where they worked, has gotten married in the store where they met. This occured, of course, in Arkansas, where Wal-Mart was started and where it's evil plans for world domination are apparently moving into matrimony as well. This story is bizzare enough. The groom is 74, the bride 48. They met at Wal-Mart. They got married there. If they have a male child, it may well be the antichrist.
Although I am an unapologetic capitalist who believes strongly in the free market, there has always been one company I could not stand. One company that seemed to be the exception that proved the rule that capitalism was more or less a good thing. This is Wal-Mart. Wal-Mart is the most awful place ever. Their staff is lazy, incompetent, and uneducated. The stores are laid out with no rhyme or reason. It's like a wearhouse exploded and they put prices on what was left. No one knows anything about the store outside their department. If I wanted someone to welcome me to the store, I'd prefer Uma Thurman, not a septagenarian with a wet, hacking cough. They drive mom and pop store out of business intentionally, whereas with other cases of this happening it was just good business. With Wal-Mart, it's something of a badge of honor. Yes, I am a capitalist, but I'm also a traditionalist. I hate the corporatization of sports, ala College Bowls named after Nokia or FedEx and baseball stadiums named after banks. Thats the traditionalist, dare I say populist in me. If Wal-Mart field ever comes about, I swear to you now I will never attend a game there or watch a game played there on TV, even if for some reason the Cubs were in the World Series there and I was given front row first base line seats. Wal-Mart hates it's workers, denying them the right to unionize. I think unions can suck, but the theory is sound, and the ones that are the worst certainly aren't in the retail sales areas.(teachers unions are the worst, with teamsters and the UAW not far behind). Wal-Mart is evil, and if people are getting married there, it's not God watching over the union, but Satan himself. I know that Sam Walton was a good man, but if there IS a hell, he's there for creating Wal-Mart. Bastard.
:: C.M. Burns 10/20/2003 03:32:00 PM [+] ::
Judge Decides DC Sniper Trial Not Crazy Enough, Grants Suspect Right to Defend Himself. Justice System Nears Collapse
In a victory for crackpots everywhere, the Judge in the John Allen Muhammed(aka The DC Sniper. Wait-ALLEGED DC Sniper) case has granted the defendent the right to defend himself. Mr. Muhammed caused viewers of Court TV to giggle delightedly as his opening statement was apparently a rambling mess in which he said Jesus was somehow involved. And I quote here: "There's three truths. The truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth. I always thought there was just one truth. Jesus said, 'Ye shall know the truth.'" He also calls on Allah to see that he's proven non guilty. So, he's got two religions backing him. If he invokes Jehovah or decides that Vishnu should be present at the case, he'll have the backing of every major diety in creation. On an unrelated note, as interesting as our god's are, I always found the Greek ones to be the most interesting. I'd like to see a crazy defendent say "Hades made me", or claim that Cupid made him kill out of love. It would certainly prove entertaining.
Of course, anyone who's watched Law & Order knows the old legal maxim(not the magazine)which states that "The person who defends himself has a fool for a client". And considering the high profile cases in which defendents have served as their own counsel, this has to be true. In the NY Subway shooting a few years ago, the defendent was declared sane enough to defend himself and proved that he wasn't. Now this. I am so glad I didn't go to law school.
What makes this development even more interesting is that it comes in the wake of an excellent article in Sundays Washington Post Outlook page by aLaw Prof. Paul Butler on
how we love a good trial. Interesting. Well, the circus is underway. Who wants popcorn!
:: C.M. Burns 10/20/2003 03:04:00 PM [+] ::
Joe Millionaire Is Back! And I Feel So Dirty!
If there's one thing about the boom of tradh-reality shows that embarrasses me, it's the fact that I like them so damn much. At first, it was a "I fear to watch, yet I cannot turn away" sort of facination that was like watching a car wreck. Now, it's out of control and damn if I don't love it! And the show that turned around my reality TV hatred, Joe Millionaire, is back.
Befor Joe Millionaire came along, the only reality shows I'd ever watched were the first season of Survivor, and a few seasons of The Real World. I watched Survivor because it was actually well-made, and I watched The Real World because it turned into unintentional self-parody around the time the show got to Boston, and while I missed the Chicago season, I couldn't get enough of the empty headed morons on the Las Vegas season. If you had a bad day, just watching one episode of those sorry fucks made you feel better about yourself. They say you're not supposed to take joy in other people's suffering/mental anguish/personality problems, etc., but these people went on TV knowing what would happen, so they were fair game.
As for Joe and the Joe Ho's(tm TWOP.com), all throughout football season FOX was talking about the show, the secret, etc. Thne it broke in the press that Joe was in fact not rich. The show became something dreams are made of. FOX, the network which will never let you down if you're looking to feel "good" dirty, was going to take all these women and see how much they wanted money. And boy, did they want it. The show was entertaining and easy to snark at. You'd watch it with friends and laugh your ass off. When MoJo would wear one of her hats, or Joe would say something stupid, or when the smoking gun outed Sarah as a fetish movie actress. It was just too good. FOX fucked up the ending by shooting it's wad one episodes before the finale, but still, it was fun.
Now, FOX looks to alienate Europe with an International version, where a broke rodeo clown plays rich Texas oilman with 20-odd European goldiggers looking for a quick ticket. The commercials look similar to the first show, and wacky snark-happy Austarlian butler Paul "No, Not THAT one" Hogan is back. That's a plus. What's funny is that at a time when Europe hates American culture(especially the French, who banned the phrase "e-mail" because it was American is origin)FOX is going to shove American culture straight down Europe's pie-hole. Anyway, I want to know how FOX pulled it off again. They got European women this time, but Joe Millionaire was SUCH a hit in America that it was FOX's highest rated series EVER, that I find it hard to believe that the found enough European women who had never heard of the show, or had friends who had never heard of the show. My theory-FOX has a time machine, recentley developed, that allows them to see how particular shows would perform. The first Millionaire was probably produced in mid-2002. Then, when the show was seen to be a hit from the time machine, FOX immediately produced another version before the first hit the states. Or maybe they have some kind of mind-erasing device ala Men in Black, as a time machine should have stopped the production of, say, Fastlane last year, or Titus.
Anyway, I hope the cowboy is dumber than rocks, and that the women are beautiful but easily conned, and greedy as hell. I'll be watching. Here's to the good times, people. Lets enjoy them befor God smites us for our Hubris.
:: C.M. Burns 10/20/2003 11:55:00 AM [+] ::
:: Friday, October 17, 2003 ::
Sports Guy Sums Up Cubs, Sox Fans Feelings
If you don't read the sports guy on ESPN.com's page 2, you should. A Boston fan through and through, he understands curses, the history of the teams, and the evil of the media. Read his piece "Paradise lost, again", and tell me I'm wrong. Well, don't tell me. Prove it.
Thanks to the Admiral for the link.
:: C.M. Burns 10/17/2003 02:18:00 PM [+] ::
Olson Twins Represent Satan in Rural Kentucky
Ah, the 80's. The gave us so much wonderful entertainment, from "Perfect Strangers" to "Silver Spoons", Sit-coms were at the top of their game. And sitting as ruler of all was "Full House", the story of a man who had killed his wife with his brothers and then decided to raise various children he kidnapped as his own. At least, I think that's what it was about. I never actually watched the show. Anyway, the breakout star of the show was not andace Cameron, the worlds first "tween", nor was it Dave "Cut It Out" Coulier, who would go on to molest Alanis Morissette, unleashing the awfulness of "Jagged Little Pill" on the world. No, the true breakout stars were Mary-Kate & Ashley Olson. Now on the cusp on 17, this identical pair of jail bait have ammassed a massive empire, based on albums, TV Shows, and straight to video films I've never seen. They ocupy the minds of middle schoolers and middle aged pedophiles everywhere. And in Kentucky, a young boy who found a two-headed snake named it after them. This child has sight behind most. Finding a two-headed serpent, the boy saw it as evil and named it after Satan's representatives here on earth, the Olson twins. Other acceptable names would have been "Hillary" and "Duff", or "Amanda" and "Raven", names of other, Satanistic "tweens". And what is a tween anyway? In my next article, I discuss that, and all the wrongness it entails.
Curse of the Tweens
A "tween", a term which burst onto the scene earlier this year, is apparently a teenager who has yet to hit the legal ago for procreation with an adult. At least, that's what it seems. All of these so-called "tweens" have TV shows, albums, movies, and deals to pose naked in a massive orgy in 'Penthouse' when they hit 18. Or that's what they've been marketing, because what kind of sicko came up with the word "Tween"? It just sounds wrong. I know, I know, it's some kind of takeoff on "Between" and "Teen", but it's not appropriate. If it meant pre-teen, which is defined loosely as the 11th & 12th years of life, I would get it, but all of the "Tweens" that Disney, Nick, and the evil forces is Canada producing "Degrassi Junior High" have forced down America's entertainment hole are at least 15 years old.(I can't believe that "Degrassi" is still on. I think I was 12 when it started. It's like a soap for middle schoolers) The only male "Tween" that I'm aware of is Frankie Muniz, star of "Malcolm in the Middle". Which just shows the evilness of Tween producers. Muniz is the exception that proves the rule that all Tweens are used for is profit and to stimulate the perverse imaginations of sweaty, virginal 50 year olds. Muniz, who has good comic timing and a future in show buisness as a real actor if he doesn't start up with the cocaine and heroin addictions that seem to addle the younger set these days, stars in movies that team him up with some 16 year old who's had just enough plastic surgery to make her look both sluttish for the twen boys and old men, and cute and spunky to the girls. They are interchangable, and Muniz himself may be part of the conspiracy, getting rich in crappy movies that launched the "careers" of Hillary Duff and Amanda Bynes, two no-talent cutsie-pies who have probably been violated in so many horrible ways in the minds of sickos everywhere that I may vomit just thinking about it. Plus, I mean, if your age ends with a "-teen" and doesn't start with "One Hundred", you're not a "tween", you're a fucking teenager! But Disney and their ilk want you to believe differently, so that you will succumb when the time is right. For you see, the real power of the Tweens lies in Mary-Kate & Ashley Olsen.
The "twins"(actually genetically duplicated clones sent here by Satan), have made more money over the past 5 years than most major film stars. They have unleashed CD's, and Videos that their fans buy slavishly, brainwashed by marketing and parents too busy to teach their children to read. They are the heads of an empire of Tweens that are just waiting to KILL US ALL.
I imagine it will happen something like this: Upon turning 18, the Twins will accept the long-rumored offer of Playboy Enterprises to pose naked in the pages of the once venerable and now trashy Playboy Magazine. This will be accompanied by a deal to make a video and calander. My roommate, who has been waiting FAR too long to see these girls naked(he talks about it. really. He should be arrested), will be just one of millions who will view the pictures and become the walking dead. It won't happen "Romero-Style", with them suddenly developing a taste for human flesh. No, first they will try to get as many as possible to view the pictures as well. After a few weeks, those that refuse to watch will notice that those who did will suddenly start to die and then reanimate, and now it's "Dawn of the Dead" time. Soon, the walking dead will overwhelm us, and we'll be forced to flee for our lives, while they worship the Tweens and feed them our souls. Frankly, I'm afriad. But I'm not going to worry, as yesterday I bought my copy of "The Zombie Survival Guide". Buy, read, learn, and don't look into the eyes of a tween, least you fall under their evil spell as well! Go with God.
:: C.M. Burns 10/17/2003 11:45:00 AM [+] ::
:: Thursday, October 16, 2003 ::
Flipping off fellow motorists not only fun, but legal!
According to this story, a Texas Appeals Court has ruled that a man has the right to flip off his fellow motorists. He had been convicted and fined for doing it earlier. So flip off your friends!
:: C.M. Burns 10/16/2003 03:05:00 PM [+] ::
25 Years of Pope JP II
The Pope has served now for 25 years, and he is probably dying. The Catholic Church in the United States faces grave dangers from it's own mismanagement of it's problems. The Church is not in dire straits yet, but it could be. I'm not much of a Catholic anymore myself. But I still love the Pope. I love him because of his dedication to the cause of freedom in Eastern Europe, for the gradual changes he brought to the Church(The Church is slow and resistant to change. Many will say he never apologized properly for the Vatican's role in ignoring the Holocaust, or for the anti-semitisim that still lives on in the European church, but I would say The Pope did everything he could, better than anyone since Paul XXIII in working the byzantine mechanisims that run the Church. He will soon pass on. The world, despite what critics of the Church's birth control policy might say.(and I am one who disagrees greatly with it myself) They hate the Church on principle anyway. I don't hate it. I'm just not much of a believer.
Anyway, the Pope, who's hand I once shook, was a giant of the 20th Century. And it's interesting now to look back at this Flashback on Pope John Paul II on National Review Online. It's their editorial after he was elected. They think he was destined for great things. They were right. I salute the Pope today, and hope that when it's his time he goes peacefully. He's earned it. What comes next for the Church, I don't know, but this Pope has done his best and more. God bless the man.
:: C.M. Burns 10/16/2003 11:11:00 AM [+] ::
Dear Chicago Cubs: Please Stop. I'm dying, here
First I wasn't going to say anything, then I was going to say everything, then I was just gonna post the lyrics to a dying Cubs Fan's Last Request. Now, I'm gonna ramble.
I was born a Cubs fan. You have to be. No one in their right mind would wilfully CHOOSE to have their hearts ripped to shreds year after year. I remember 1984 as clear as yesterday. My "initiation" into the Cubs tradition of blowing it. It hurt bad. Not as bad as I hurt Tuesday night before literally drowning my sorrows in tons ot tequilia, but it hurt. In '89, well, that was rough, but by then I'd accepted that the Cubs getting to the playoffs was a miracle in itself. That loss to the Giants in the NLCS seems...distant and unimportant. During the next 9 years, the Cubs would suck, until a phenom named Kerry Wood pitched a 20-strikeout game in May of 1998, and Sammy Sosa, a hitter best know for striking out, started hitting home runs left and right. That was, in my mind, the best Cubs season I've ever seen, will proabably ever see. Wood was a marvel, just barely trailing Kurt Schilling in Strikeouts for the season. Two friends and I actually contstructed "Wood Hats", spraypainting old safety helmets blue, nailing a piece of wood through the top, and paining a 'C' on the front. We drove to Cincinatti to see Wood pitch, brought along the "K"s for use in his strikeout, and sat in the bleachers and watched him pitch a great game while getting high fives from travelling Cubs fans for our helmets. Sosa vs. MacGuire was a great tale, went down to the last weekend of the season, and both walked away winners, MacGuire with the title, and Sosa with legions of new Cubs fans. Poor bastards didn't know that Sammy's smile and gentle nature were nothing compared to the Curse. The Cubs backed into the Wild Card that year, trying hard to blow it, but failing when San Fransisco wanted it even less. They got swept by the Braves, but for that season, it didn't matter. It was so wonderful, part of the magic of baseball, that the Cubs in the playoffs was enough.
This year I started out the playoffs thinking the Cubs would lose to the Braves. Then they Won Game 1, Game 3 & dominated Game 5. I believed in them. I believed the curse was over. Then the Cubs, despite terrible bullpen pitching and awful starts from Zambrano and one not so great showing from Wood, were up 3-1 on the Marlins. I didn't even worry about losing Game 5. The Cubs two hottest pitchers were up, and we were headed home. What could go wrong?
Well, we all know what happened Tuesday night. The Fan. The collapse, the series was over that night. Forget game 7. Baseball is about momentum and magic and the Cubs, my friends, are cursed. They will never win another World Series, and I doubt I'll ever see them play in one. Why are they cursed? Here's why I believe: 1 out, 1 on, Top of the 8th. 5 outs from the series. The foul shot to left. In my mind, if the Fan doesn't touch the ball Alou catches it. The Cubs would have ended that inning with no runs scored against them. I know it. Everyone knows it. If someone says "well, Prior was tired, etc..", they are full of it. Alou makes that catch, the Cubs go to the Series. I will always know that. It's the fan's fault, but I don't blame him. I feel so sorry for him. Yes, I wanted his head on my desk yesterday, but now I know. The Curse of the Cubs cursed him the moment he got his ticket for that seat. If he's 5 seats up or down, he's nobody. But someone would have done it. Because anyone who says they wouldn't have gone for that ball is a fucking hypocrite. We all would have. And whoever was sitting in that seat would have been the goat. Because it, like the Cubs, was cursed. The Curse would go on to cause Alex Gonzalez to flub an easy double play that would have kept the score at 3-1 going to the Cub's 8th. But he was cursed the moment he put on a Cub uniform. How can it not be a curse? Jack McKeon, coach of the Marlins, was the GM of the '84 San Diego Padres, the team that the Curse sent to the World Series instead of the Cubs in '84. In 84, the Cubs had to win just one in three to go to the Series. They flubbed three straight games. Just like this year. The ball went through Leon Durham's legs. Like it went off Gonzalez's glove. The Cubs, my friends, are cursed.
Final thoughts? Well, The Marlins don't deserve it, FOX announcers to the contrary(Chicago fans love to claim that sportscasters hate their teams. NBC always beat up the Bulls during their run). Thom Breneman should burn in hell for his barely contained enthusiam at watching the Cubs, a team he did play by play for, started his career with, lost. FOX tried to make a story about the Marlins, at how old Jack McKeon was, at how, they had a great second season, etc, etc. Bull. The story was the Cubs. It's always the Cubs. How could it not be the Cubs? The MArlins won a Series in 1997 for God's sake, how do you root against a team that hasn't been to won in 58 years? Won on in 95 years? I don't get it. So Cubs fans, that's it. There is no next year. There's never a next year, as much as we want there to be. We should be resigned to our fate. I fought the Curse for 26 years, 9 months, and 14 days. I give. We can never be champs. I'll see you all on Opening Day. I wouldn't miss it. I'm a Cubs fan, after all, and they are my team, and I will love them until I die. It's that simple. Unexplainable, but simple. The Cubs are dead. Long live the Cubs.
:: C.M. Burns 10/16/2003 10:50:00 AM [+] ::
:: Wednesday, October 15, 2003 ::
Blackout on Posting
After last nights...event...in Chicago, I will post no thoughts until tonights game ends. Whether I go insane then is still being considered. No mention at least until then, if ever.
:: C.M. Burns 10/15/2003 02:30:00 PM [+] ::
:: Tuesday, October 14, 2003 ::
Lou Grant Doesn't Love Stalin
I posted a link yesterday to a story about how Ed Asner allegedly said he thought Stalin was "misunderstood". It was taken from a firsthand interview with Asner, and the man who asked the question not only misquotes Asner, he misquotes HIMSELF. Bad. Anyway, turns out Asner said he would like to play Stalin BECAUSE he was so evil and since no ones ever really made a big production out of his life. He was just wondering why, since Stalin was a big figure, historically. I still don't like Asner's politics, but he's not crazy, it seems. And I would like to see a Stalin bio-pic, something unforgiving, obviously, but also something that gets to who he was. Of course, anyone who knew him is probably dead, either of old age or being killed by the man himself. So I guess insight into his mind would be hard to find.
:: C.M. Burns 10/14/2003 03:30:00 PM [+] ::
Somebody noticed that the license plate of Agent Smith's Car is IS 5416. Knowing that nothing is a coincidence in the world of The Matrix, an intrepid fan looked up Isiah 54, Verse 16 in the bible. Here's the quote:
"16 Behold, I have created the smith that bloweth the coals in the fire, and that bringeth forth an instrument for his work; and I have created the waster to destroy."
Well, I made my first trip to NYC ever this weekend, and I have to say that everything bad I ever heard about the place is true: Rude people, too much neon, pretentious snobs, that urine smell(it reallis is EVERYWHERE!). However, it's a really cool place where the vast majority of people are nomrmal, down to Earth, and have the same pride in their city that I have in Chicago, and, to a lesser extent, DC. It's a nice place to visit, but I wouldn't want to live there. Why? Fucking expensive, that's why.
Anyway, negatives first. One thing almost ruined the trip for me until I talked to some New Yorkers who disliked what I saw as much as I did. I went down to the WTC site, to see it, to pay my respects, out of a "need" to, I don't know. I got off at City Hall, and to my left was the Brooklyn Bridge, a truly magnificant sight, I assure you. I walked towards Ground Zero, and the first thing I cam across was a chapel(St. Marks, I think), whicj stood right next to the towers and survived unharmed. The church has put up a timeline of events outside, and details how rescue workers used it as a triage, a place to rest and pray, and to get some food. It's a very nice setup. Then, I walked down the street to the obvious, empty space where the WTC used to stand. I noticed something. There were street vendors everywhere, hawking everything from I Love NY T-Shirts, mugs, and shotglasses to cheap NYPD & FDNY hats and shirts, to bootlegged DVD's and CD's to fucking hot dogs and pretzels. I was overcome with a sense of outrage. To me, this site should be hallowed ground. There should be no selling of crap across the street from where 3000 people lost their lives. I felt, for lack of a more approrpriate analogy, like Jesus in the Temple, seeing the moneychangers in a holy place. I felt like knocking the stuff over and screaming at them at how their presence at the site cheapened the whole place. But I just watched as some fat tourist bought overpriced NYC hot dogs and keychains for his fat tourist family. When I went over to the fence to look at the site and reflect, I actually prayed, which I rarely do, that the dead don't think less of us. When I left, I was upset. I got back to my host's apartment, and told her about it. She said she felt the same way and that everyone whe knew did as well, it's just that it's impossible to stop. Well, I disagree. I think you pass a law and prosecute anyone selling crap in front of the place. NY had no problems rounding up the homeless and shutting down the Times Square peep shows. Why not break up this crap? Can you imagine someone selling t-shirts and cheap busts of JFK in front of his grave? They'd be killed by the Army, which watches over Arlington Cemetary. That's what it felt like. Almost ruined my weekend.
But I felt better after talking with my friend. Next thing that sucked: Times Square. Ugh, an ugly, Neon-saturated craphole with overpriced everything and too many tourists. Plus, it's home to a lot of musicals, and if there's one art form I despise, it's the musical. Wait, you say, you like Opera, isn't that just a musical for Snooty Types? Well, no. Musicals are churned out and have no heart ir emotion. Opera is about loss, beauty, victory, love and requires incredible talent to preform. Unlike, say, The Lion King. So that sucked. I went to a "real" play though, penned by a New Yorkers and directed by a New Yorker, and even though it was awful (note to NYC readers, if I have any, avoid "Flossie" at all costs) it was still cool to see real theater, which we have none of here in DC.
OK, the good stuff. Cabs are so cheap there. It's because of the Zone thing here. It cost three of us $6.50 to go farther than ehat would equal three zones, which would make our cost in DC of about $15-16. Another reason to hate DC cab drivers. Our drivers also didn't seem so intent on talking on the phone as DC drivers are, and were actually polite and cool. Breakes the stereotype.
Central Park is fantastic. Though my favorite large open space in a city is still the National Mall, Central Park is a terrific outdoor area with great views and it smells like fall in there. I still wouldn't stay there after dark, but it was really nice.
The food was damn good, if expensive. I recommend hitting a diner downtown for a good lunch, and then one of the brew-pubs or even a bar for some snacks. It's good.
American Museum of Natural History, right off Central Park West, is a great place, filled with facinating exhibits and such. It was good to see it presented in such a kid-friendly fashion, as getting kids into this stuff early is important.
Brooklyn people kick ass. A friend of mine lives in Brooklyn, and went up there for lunch one day. The Brooklyn residents were much more down to earth than their Manhattan counterparts, and things were marginally cheaper.
So that was my trip. I guess I no longer support turning Manhatten into a federal prison from which there is no escape. It's a cool town. Oh, and if I ever link to a New York Post article here again, call me on it. The paper is trash, a tabloid that makes the Chicago Sun-Times look like the Washington Post. Also, I'm still rooting against the Yankees. On principle. Thankfully, enough New Yorkers understood that American's don't hate NYC as much as Steinbrenner and the team he bought. So I don't love NY, but I like it enough to go back.
:: C.M. Burns 10/14/2003 11:56:00 AM [+] ::
:: Friday, October 10, 2003 ::
Here's something I think we can all get behind. It's The Second Annual Blogger Boobie-Thon for Breast Cancer. What it is is that the female bloggers around the country post shots of their breasts, and to see them you give something to paypal that goes to breast cancer research. Everybody wins! See if YOU can spot any breasts you recognize(that a shamless game I came up with. I'm going to hell) Give. I did.
:: C.M. Burns 10/10/2003 12:18:00 AM [+] ::
:: Thursday, October 09, 2003 ::
Elitists, Repulican or Democract, are Too Snooty To Be Taken Seriously
In what has to be the best analysis of liberal democrat elitisim/foolishness ever, Armed Liberal at Winds of Change.NET shows just how out of touch with reality the leaders of his party are. I was directed to his site by a friend a few weeks ago when I was lamenting about how self-righteous the left has become. He writes of the rather disgusting way some liberal democrats look at the voters: undereducated and unable to decide correctly for themselves. This kind of thinking is found in Michael Moore's rants, Eric Alterman's bizzare media analysis, and the general political coverage of Salon.com. I know I don't post much about how much the GOP can piss me off sometimes, but really, the can. Armed Liberal is tough enough to post about how much his party needs to change. Don't let Eric Alterman know, though. He may brand you a nutjob, like he did Hitchens when Hitchens dared say Saddam should go. Anyway, I'm gonna link this guy's site full time when i get back from NYC. Later.
:: C.M. Burns 10/09/2003 10:47:00 PM [+] ::
I'm Going to the Big City
I'm going to New York City this weekend. It's actually, I'm ashamed to admit, my first real visit. As a long time NYC sports basher, I look forward to finding proof that all New Yorkers are craven, self-centered snobs. If I don't find it, well, you'll never know, since I'll invent stories about them anyway, because like the Pope and Michael Moore, I am infallible, and anyone who says different is a liar and going to hell. I like the Pope, but he's not always right. I don't like Michale Moore, and he claims to have never lied or gotten anything wrong, so I'm like both of them. I have no idea what that last sentence means. Go Cubs.
:: C.M. Burns 10/09/2003 03:44:00 PM [+] ::
Spinning Out of Control
I was in an ugly mood yesterday. I haven't posted a rant as angry as the one about Jesse Jackson in a while. I think it was the Cubs loss, and the fact that I don't much care for Jesse Jackson. Anyway, after the Cubs crushed Florida last night, I feel a little better, and promise to be more upbeat. Which is why today I'm posting a pit on what "Jane Galt" of janegalt.com calls "Jane's Law", which states that the party in power will grow more arrogant and cocky as time goes on, and the party out of power will go completely insane. It was true during the Clinton era, and it's true during teh Dubya years as well. Today, I haven't found much on GOP cockiness, but believe me, it's there. I do have this piece for Byron York in National Review Online in which he shows how the Democrats have spun into fantasy land regarding the recall. As he points out, in the days leading up to the massive stomping of Gray Davis, the Dems were calling the recall a "right-wing Power Grab", and after the crushing of their governor, it was "a message for President Bush". He's got polling numbers that show the recall basically proved that Californian's really didn't like Gray Davis. Anyway, it's a good read. And fun. Bring out the stats at your next cocktail party to impress the swells.
:: C.M. Burns 10/09/2003 10:02:00 AM [+] ::
:: Wednesday, October 08, 2003 ::
Schwarzenegger Defeats Media!
That should be the headline in todays papers, writes Tim Graham on National Review Online. He sums up a race that he has followed much more than I have. All I know is if Arnie can be governor, and Sammy Sosa can not choke in the 9th inning(yes, they lost, but Dusty Baker made two bad choices. For once, Sosa stepped up) then the Cubs can win the World Series. I believe.
:: C.M. Burns 10/08/2003 03:10:00 PM [+] ::
Jesse Jackson, The Democrats, and The Politics of Fear
This is a quick thought because if I get started on this I may have an anuerism. If anyone reads this and finds me racist, well, I think you'll need to look in the mirror to find the true racist. Here's what I have to say. Yesterday, I was listening to Roe & Garry of WLS in Chicago on the internet. Funny guys, these two. Anyway, Chicago has recently appointed a new Police Superindendent. For the first time in 20 years, he happens to be white. The last few have been either Black or Hispanic. Before he was even officially announced as the new head of the CPD, Jesse Jackson, a man who has sold black people down the river for his own personal gain since the late 1970's, in my opinion, was condemning Mayor Richard Daley for not even considering a black man for the position, or at least a Hispanic. Just to show how off base he was, the committee that recomended the new Chief considered just about every qualified senior officer on the force, black, white, hispanic, etc. and the head of the committee who picked the white guy was himself black. The reasoning was that he was most qualified for the job, or so goes the assumption by people who aren't insane, unlike Jesse Jackson. Now, if for the past 20 years while the number of blacks and hispanics in Chicago and on the force had increased and no minority chief was even considered, he might have had a case. But this is the first white guy to hold the post since the early 1980's. And the previous superintendents did a fine job and retired, were not thrown out. Given the positive record the city has had in appointing chiefs, you'd assume, as Gary Meier did on his show yesterday, that the picked the white guy because they thought he was the best man for the job. But because he was white, the Rev. Jackson decided that racism was being displayed by the city. Now, I know that he doesn't have the clout he used to, and I know that many African-Americans in Chicago especially are tired of him(he's made himself rich off of their tragedies), but what was equally shocking to me was that the spokeswoman for the African-American Police Officers Assoc. of Chicago expressed "dismay" over the selcetion of a white man. During the show, several black listeners and police officers called in to say that they felt that Jackson and the spokeswoman were off their rockers. However, one black woman called up and said that only a minority commissioner could understand and deal with minority crime. The hosts expressed shock at this statement, and rightly assaulted the double standard that would have occured had a white guy called in and said the EXACT SAME THING. If I called in and said only a black commissioner could understand black crime, I would be labeled a racist and a crackpot, and rightly so. Views like hers were rare on the show, and black and hispanic callers after her said she was out to lunch, but with Jackson and the spokeswoman saying they were upset over the choice purely because the man is white, it's hard to believe that she's an isolated case. Thanks to the class and racial tensions built up by people like Jackson, Al Sharpton, Al Gore, and the rest of the Democratic party that stays silent on this, people actually believe this crap. Dr. King, who they all pay lip service to and then seem to aspire to goals he would find appaling, must be spinning in his grave. Whatever happened to "judged not by the color of their skin but by the content of their character"? I know that in some places bias exists, but since Chicago has had a black mayor and minority leadership for the past 20-plus years after the dark, very racist days of the first Daley, I find it hard to belive that anyone in the town thinks racisim is at work. It sickens me. And I do blame the Democratic party, the party of victimization, the party that says it's someone else's fault, the party of wild-eyes accusations. There used to be something noble about Jackson, especially. In the 60's he marched with King and in the 70's he harrassed Daley in Chicago. Since, all he's done is gone around declaring everything he doesn't agree with racist. He was on CNN last night just waiting to declare the Claifornia recall racist and illegitimate because of voter fraud and disinfranchisement, only Davis got beat so soudly he could only talk about how Prop 54's loss was a good thing. The man sickens me. He cares about himself and himself only, and if this country finally does split along racial lines, you can blame him, his apologists, and the whole leadership of the Democratic party for fostering an environment of fear and distrust. Perosnally, I trust the people of Chicago. The city has come a long way. They'll come even farther when the people rise up and kick Jesse and his politics of fear out the door.
:: C.M. Burns 10/08/2003 02:22:00 PM [+] ::
PETA, the sub-human organization that places animal welfare over human survival has once again displayed the tact and taste, not to mention intelligence, that make them the darlings of empty-headed celebs the world over. In response to the horrible mauling of Roy Horn of Seigfried & Roy, PETA faxed this to his hospital room:
"Perhaps Friday's frightening incident will make you realize that a brightly lit stage with pounding music and a screaming audience is not the natural habitat for tigers, lions, or any other exotic animals"
That's from the groups VP, Dan Mathews. He also calls on the magical duo to build a sanctuary for the tigers. Now, it might seem reasonible if they hadn't faxed it to his hospital room, or if they hadn't made such a daft statement. The tigers live better than Dan Mathews probably does. Plus, in an epic case of not doing your homework, Mathews is apparently unaware that no one has done more to help the endangered white tiger than Seigfried & Roy. Really. They've spent tons of money out of pocket building sanctuaries for them, which is more than PETA has spent on any rescue plans. If you want to search my archive you'll find a link to their financial statements that show that PETA spends almost nothing on building animal shelters or "rescuing" animals. All they care about is publicity for their cause and acting like neo-puritans when it comes to meat, dairy, and even fish. To be truely PETA, you see, you must be a Vegan. Hell, they want to force you to be one too. I hate them. They are the biggest bunch of bastards in America, and their ties to the terrorist Animal Liberation Front should be more closely examined. I tell all my vegitarian and animal rights friends the same thing: I'm for the HUMANE treatment of animals, and if you really are, you'll give to your local Humane Society or the ASPCA.
Now wait, you say. Come on. You made fun of Roy yesterday, and his tigers. Well yes, I did, but seeing as I have a readership of 10 and I'm joking when I say it and I wasn't using his unfortunate situation to further any kind of cause, I feel justified and perfectly reasonable attacking the scum that run PETA. If there was any justice in the world, these people would be run over by elephants.
:: C.M. Burns 10/07/2003 02:29:00 PM [+] ::
Death by meetball sub for Jared!
Alright, I admit it, in the beginning I liked the Jared Subway ads. Especially since the kid went to IU while I was there (didn't know him) and ate at the same Subway I did, and the comercials were sort of funny. They they had the Clay Henry ad, and the jingle stuck in my head. Then Jared wouldn't go away. Then South Park pillored him the hilarious satire "Jared Has Aides", which might be the most offensive thing the show has ever done, besides making last Christmas's episode about how Jesus is killed rescuing Santa from an Iraqi prison. Anyway, Jared's 15 minutes were up. He should have taken his no-longer-fat ass and his checks from subway and dissapesred like Clara Peller("where's the beef") and the Dell kid. But he's still around. Read "The Tao of Jared - The Subway spokesman who won't go away" and cower in fear as Jared jumpstarts another Subway campaign. I think we've had ebough. I think Jared needs to fitted for a sub that will never resurface, if you get my drift......I'm saying he should "take a vacation with Luca Brazi"...I mean Jared should be killed you fools! killed! With Subway sandwiches in a massive dose of irony! What's wrong with you idiots! God!
(note from attorney: The blogger was joking and wishes no harm on Jared. He just wants him to go away. Or choke on his damn vinagrette subs. That is all)
:: C.M. Burns 10/07/2003 11:16:00 AM [+] ::
Interesting, A Male, Injectable Contraceptive. Useful, but horribly frightening!
Australia, a great country, has developed the first injectable male contraceptive that they claim could be 100% effective. This is good news for women, obviously, and probably has the Condom industry a bit upset. My problem is the whole needle-injection thing. I've never gotten the whole "piercing" thing. The fact that I've heard some men actually get their balls pierced scares the crap out of me. So needles and my sperm doesn't sit well. Obviously, they'd inject it in the arm, but still. They say it stops sperm production. My question is, will the little guys ever come back? They say so, but remember, scientists once believed that mental illness meant demonic possession. I'm concerned. And intruiged!
:: C.M. Burns 10/07/2003 10:26:00 AM [+] ::
Today Is Beat Up Michael Moore Day
I caught Michael Moore on the Daily Show last night, and I guess I was feeling like I needed punishment or something, as actually watched the whole thing. As usual, Moore made me angry, not because he was telling the "awful truth", but because he was trotting out his usual lies and doublespeak and the crowd was lapping it up, and usually respsonsible interviewer Jon Stewart(who needs to be more like Tim Russert and less like Larry King in his interviews, I mean ALL, not just Moore. Cut me some slack)actually allowed Moore to state his belief that Republicans are not of this Earth. Really, Stewart thought he was joking, as did I, and Moore went on and said, that he didn't think they were human. I laughed. Moore is obviously a nut job. Republicans are of this Earth, and we are human, but we're genetic clones CREATED by aliens who are altered to feed on the poor. So there.
Anyway, Moore's got a new book coming out, that will most likely be in the Non-Fiction section of your bookstore, though it might have a better place next to the New Age conspiracy theories, or just plain fiction. In it, Moore poses 7 Questions for the President that I just found incredible. The section is reprinted in the Gaurdian online. The Gaurdian is the most liberal British paper, which says A LOT, and the British literati are the fools who gave Moore their National Book Award for "Stupid White Men", a book so full of errors and misrepresentations that Moore had to make "Bowling for Columbine" to one up himself. Anyway, I'm not linking to them here. What I am linking to are two blogs that have some answers and questions for Mr. Moore. The first is on Tim Blair's blog(which I should link to permanently), and he pretty much answers all of Moore's inane questions. The second is a list of 7 question for Mr. Moore, which are far more insteresting and funny than anything Moore's ever done(it takes a while to load, but it's worth it).
Why do I hate Michael Moore? Well, part of it is because Moore hates me. He's never met me, but he thinks all Republicans are scum, and I was always taught that you judge a person on individual traits, not nebulous political beliefs. So I don't like the blanket judgement. Thanks to hs status as a public figure, I know all about Moore, how he distorts the truth for his own gain, how he says he for the little guy while he himself is worth millions and still tries to screw his writers, how he makes his money, which is through lies and manipulation and of the tragedy of others. "Roger & Me" and "Bowling for Columbine" are about two horrible tragedies, the collapse of Flint, MI, and the slaughter of High School students. Moore used those two tragedies to make himself rich. He's pond scum. That he has mindless followers who believe they are "open-minded dissenters" beause they listen to his lies makes me sick. He's not opening minds, he's closing them, and he's doing it on college campuses and at high schools were kids need to stay open-minded. Michael Moore is the worst thing to happen to the national discussion since televised debates. He always yells "Shame on you, Mr. Bush", or "Shame on you, corporation". I say "Shame on you Michael Moore. You're less than human and a horrible example of 'dissent' ". Anyone from Indymedia that reads this, if you want to dissent, go read Chomsky or Edward Said. I may disagree with them, but at least they're honest. Kick Moore's ass to the curb.
:: C.M. Burns 10/07/2003 10:05:00 AM [+] ::
Not good today, my friends. With the Pope on his death bed and the Red Sox advancing to the next round of the playoffs, the end could well be at hand. Now I feel torn between wanting to see a Cubs/Red Sox World Series and not wanting to burn in a lake of fire. Tough days ahead.
:: C.M. Burns 10/07/2003 09:08:00 AM [+] ::
You Knew This Would Happen. Just Admit It: Roy Mauled By Tiger
The oddest story this weekend, besides the Cubs not losing and the Arnold parade of horrors,
is hands down the on-stage mauling of magician Roy Horn of Seigfried & Roy fame at the Mirage in Vegas. Now,
Vegas has seen some ugly things, from Mob hits to Gallagher: Live!, but Roy getting mauled by a tiger? One of the tigers he's dedicated his life to saving? The magical tiger!? This happened on the Simpsons, for God's sake!
What I wanna know is how many children were scarred for life by this? How many
kids were in that audience. If you read that article, it turns out hundreds showed up for a
vigil for Roy, who apparently will survive. So he's got fans. "Roy, this is Seigfried! Get Up! Oh my God, the blood! The blood! Help Us!" That had to be an ugly scene. I wish I was there. And yes, I'm going to hell.
:: C.M. Burns 10/06/2003 03:09:00 PM [+] ::
Why Arnold's Getting a Pass for Groping
In the last days of the Californial Gubenatorial recall campaign, the tone has shifted to the nasty politics of personal destruction that Gray Davis is know for. Not that he's alone in doing it, he just does it better than anyone else. Facing polls that show the recall almost certainly passing on Tuesday, Davis, with foremer President & Groper in Chief Bill Clinton and his enabler, former Veep and everyone's favorite would, should coulda candidate Al Gore have been unleashing every kind of personal attack on der Ah-nold, including charges from the very pro-Davis LA Times that the Terminator is a serial groper of women and sexual harrasser. All of this may or may not be true. It seems apparent that some time in his early career as a bodybuilder, Arnie probably squeezed something his shouldn't have. His admitting to "past bad behavior" certainly would confirm he did. And the number of accusers just keeps piling up, with the LA Times pulling out a women who said Arnie groped her three weeks ago during a post-production session. Where and when seems to not have been brought up, as the only film Arnie has in post right now, according to his page on the IMDB in "Around the World in 80 Days", which is actually a Jackie Chan flick that Arnold has a cameo in. And since T3 opened in July, I wonder where that accusation came from. Equally interesting is that the Arnold camp denies three of the most recent charges, including the three-weeks-ago claim, and says that the fourth, which allegedly occured at Gold's Gym in California in the 1970's, is not recalled by the candidate. Then there were the Nazi accusations, which seem to have disappeared as quickly as they were brought up. That's classic Davis, only this time, it's not working.
All this, if coming from a paper other than the LA Times, would not seem as suspicious. But the LA Times has been blasting the recall and Arnold from day one. And they are very pro-Davis. While every poll in the state showed the Austrian Oak's rise in the polls last weekend, the highly biased question from the LA Times showed the recall losing ground. Later last week, the Times admitted that the other polls had greater weight. Plus, Gray Davis, while not sexually harassing female staff members. does have a history of violance against several male and female members of his staff, with allegations running from throwing things at them, to one report stating he grbbed a female aide by the throat and pushed her up against a wall. (Note: I'm getting all of this from Slate.com's Mikey Kaus and his Kausfiles blog, which is a great primer on the whole recall fiasco. He's more anti-Davis/Bustamante than he is pro-Arnie, but he's links are facinating.)
All of this is moot, however. While Salon.com issued a polemic against Arnold as a serial groper in todays edition(if you want it, get their damn day pass. It's a hassle, and their content is so partisan I can't bring myself to pay for it), you can't help but hear every Republican in California laughing. The LA Times and Salon had a knee-jerk reaction to just about every accuser of President Clinton when it came to sexually inapropriate behavior: blame the woman, vilify her, protect the President, even if he might have raped someone(this was never proven, but articles in places like the Times and Salon went a long way to detroying her personally without the President having to say a word. Now, I always thought Clinton had a "problem" controlling himself with women around, ie, he would act like the lecherous dog everyone knew him to be. And if Schwarzenegger has the same problem, I think he has no place in the Governor's mansion. But since the impeachment uproar of 1998, we've been told that character doesn't matter. That behaving inapropriately doesn't matter. That all that matters is the intent of the candidate. So Salon, and Gloria Steinam and the LA Times can gripe all they want about Arnold and his habit of pinching women. They come off as massive hypocrites for supporting his accusers wholesale while condemening Clinton's in the same manner. Maureen Dowd, who I never read, apparently understands this(feminisim being the only moevement she evr "got"), as she wroye in yesterdays NYT as quoted at Andy Sullivan's blog: "Feminism died in 1998 when Hillary allowed henchlings and Democrats to demonize Monica as an unbalanced stalker, and when Gloria Steinem defended Mr. Clinton against Kathleen Willey and Paula Jones by saying he had merely made clumsy passes, then accepted rejection, so there was no sexual harassment involved. As to his dallying with an emotionally immature 21-year-old, Ms. Steinem noted, 'Welcome sexual behavior is about as relevant to sexual harassment as borrowing a car is to stealing one.' Surely what's good for the Comeback Kid is good for the Terminator."
What we have here with Arnie is a case of the chickens coming home to roost. I don't have to like it, necessarily, but I can get some laughs out of it. This is moral relativism at it's worst. This is what happens when you want to apply different standards to similar behavior. This is way, come Wed., Arnold Schwarzenegger will be the next governor of California. Considering the voting record of the people of California and the choices made by Gray Davis and his buddy President Bubba, this is about as instant Karma as it gets.
:: C.M. Burns 10/06/2003 01:54:00 PM [+] ::
Cubs Win and It Feels So Good
Only on certain days am I in such a good mood that virtually nothing can bring me down. One of those days is payday, which happens every two weeks, so I at least get 26 good days a year. The other, which happens far too infrequently, is the day after, how to put this delicately? Oh yeah, after I spend the night with a lady But rarest of all is after a Cubs postseason victory. Since I've been alive, the cubs have won all of 6 postseason games. Last night was their sixth, the deciding one that catapulted the Cubs into the NLCS for just the third time in my 26 years and ended their 95 year drought of postseason futility. True, the Cubs aren't in the series yet, but a lot of frustration was eliminated last night. As I talked to friends and family after the game, the feeling was muted, almost as if we were dreaming. The Cubs had beaten the heartless, drab, robot-like Braves, and for once, their was joy in Wrigleyville. Whatever happens next, happens, but the Cubs just made my month. That right, a whole damn month. I feel like crying I'm so happy. Bring on the Fish!
:: C.M. Burns 10/06/2003 10:34:00 AM [+] ::
:: Friday, October 03, 2003 ::
Best Post-Rush Analysis
Just linking to a piece by ESPN.com's page 2's Ralph Wiley on the Rush affair: "In a Rush to make a big statement". It blames Rush, ESPN, and even some in the media for the massive attack on Rush that occured after Sunday's statement. Since Wiley is the most even-handed of the Page 2 columnists, I've always liked him. Sports guy is too Boston-centirc, and the Water Cooler guy is too West Coast-centric. Wiley has no biases in sports. He just likes good play, and his 'What are they thinking' segments are great. So I'll look at him for final authority on this thing. He makes sense. More than Rush or anyone else has, at least.
:: C.M. Burns 10/03/2003 02:05:00 PM [+] ::
Rush, McNabb, & The Sports Media
I used to be an everyday listener to Rush Limbaugh. When I was in High School, I was, as Limbaugh was described, an "arch-conservative", anti-Clinton to the core and proud of it. I still find Rush to be funny, but I only catch the last half hour of his show on WLS.com, the Chicago station that Roe Conn & Gary Meier, the greatest talk duo ever, call home. I listen online, and Rush still has a way with words. He always did.
Rush has fended off attacks on his character before, many times. I was actually surprised to find out ESPN hired him to do football pregame with a bunch of ex-pros. Rush has talked about sports before, but he's RUSH LIMBAUGH, conservative attack dog. ESPN knew he might say something controversial. And he did. He said that Donovan McNabb, Eagles QB, is overrated by the media because the media wants black QB's to succeed. On it's face, it appears racist. And in the wake of the controversey, Rush resigned, standing by what he said. I don't think what Rush said was racist. I don't even think he was necessarily wrong to state it, as the media does have a tendency to pick up players who are better than they are because of their backstory(black or not). In essence, Rush was doing what he always does, which is attacking percieved Media Bias. I think he's wrong about McNabb being overrated. McNabb fas fantastic last year, and although he's had a slow start this season, it was way too early to call him overrated. But that's my opinion. Over at Slate.com, of all places, their sports guy writes "Rush Limbaugh Was Right - Donovan McNabb isn't a great quarterback, and the media do overrate him because he is black". It's a good piece, and while I still say McNabb isn't overrated, I do think there might be something to the media bias angle. And I really don't think Rush is a racist. He might be finished though, if the drug thing is true. But I have no comment on that until he does, and it was in the Enquierer, not, say, the WasPost, so I'll withold judgement. But is anyone surprised Rush said something that upset some people? If ESPN says they are, they're liars, and bad ones at that.
:: C.M. Burns 10/03/2003 09:52:00 AM [+] ::
:: Wednesday, October 01, 2003 ::
I Need an Unbiased Explination, Here, about the Wilson Thing
I remember the small flap that popped up in DC back in July after Robert Novak wrote that Clinton Administartion Ambassador Joe Wilson's wife was the one who suggested he be used to go to Niger in search of Uranium. Turns out she was CIA, though her role in the agency is unclear. Novak himself tries to douse the scandal in his column today, 'The CIA leak'. It gets the point across that he didn't think saying that Wilson's wife was CIA would do any harm, which, despite Joe Conason's rantings in Salon over the past few days(Annoying Day Pass ad needed to read him), appears to be the case. Not even George Tenet, CIA director extrodinare(sarcasm, the man should be fired) said she was compromised in any way. He just wants to know who leaked it. Which is what I guess we all want to know. If they find the person, fire them, though I doubt it was Karl Rove, since Wilson has backed off his claim Rove did it, and he seems to hate him (he want's him carted out of the White House in chains), so this flip-flopping is odd. I would like the President to fire whoever did it, and if it was Rove, he should go. But this independent counsel thing Schumer's ranting about seems overblown. There's not even any clear evidence saying any law was broken. Certainly Novak didn't break any law. So what's the big deal? The way I understand it the CIA always asks the Justice Dept. to investigate CIA leaks, and this is no different. If it's anything other than a desperate smear or a manufactured scandle by a bored DC press corps, and it is dull here, I'd like a solid, sober explination. Because I'm not getting it from the media, Joe Conason, or Joe Wilson. Anyone? Bueller? Smoot? Hawley-Smoot?
:: C.M. Burns 10/01/2003 12:02:00 PM [+] ::
I'm Going to Hollywood, City of Dreams!
What with my recent troubles with the fairer sex, I'm moving to LA to go after Uma Thurman and Naomi Watts, as both are really hot and now available. I expect the women of LA to be deep and totally NOT materialistic. Plus, compared to Ethan Hawke, I'm a goddamned genius! Yo, Uma & Naomi! You two swing both ways? California here I come!
(edit: well, my lawyers inform me that both Watts and Thurman have restraining orders out against anyone who isn't an established actor. So I'm staying here. What a crock.)
:: C.M. Burns 10/01/2003 11:22:00 AM [+] ::