Through The Static

August 9, 2008

Reticence of Mainstream Media Becomes a Story Itself

Filed under: Eeeeep!,Media,Politics — disciplepete @ 9:41 am

This article is about the mainstream media not pursuing the John Edwards affair story, which was actually primarily covered by the National Enquirer until very recently. I personally don’t think the Edwards affair story is important, but it is the type of trivia the mainstream media usually thrives on. Oh, and Tranimal, I won’t make fun of you for your National Enquirer subscription anymore! NYT:

For almost 10 months, the story of John Edwards’s affair remained the nearly exclusive province of the National Enquirer — through reports, denials, news of a pregnancy, questions about paternity and, finally, a slapstick chase through a hotel in Beverly Hills.Political blogs, some cable networks and a few newspapers reported on it — or, more accurately, reported on The Enquirer reporting on it. Jay Leno andDavid Letterman made Mr. Edwards the butt of jokes on their late-night shows, but their own networks declined to report on the rumors surrounding him on the evening news. Why?

A number of news organizations with resources far greater than The Enquirer’s, like The New York Times, say they looked into the Edwards matter and found nothing solid enough to report, while others did not look at all.

Some of their comments point to a lack of interest in a story about the private conduct of an also-ran presidential candidate, and a distaste for following the lead of a publication they hold in low esteem. Only in Mr. Edwards’s home state, North Carolina, did newspapers aggressively chase the story in the last few weeks.


August 1, 2008

::rolls eyes:: “Obama Too Fit To Be President”

Filed under: Idiots,Politics,Wake Up Call — bobbleheadedbob @ 8:03 am

The idiocy of American media astounds me.  UnLike my own idiotic endeavors, which are not and should not ever be taken as more than 3 shakes of salt….

…that is, 3 shakes of salt over some hot, crisp sweet potater fries.  Korean sweet potater fries… none of that orangey, soggy “yam” mush.

Mmmm…  gohgeumah

Wait on the weight-watching, por favor!

Wait on the weight-watching, por favor!

Sometimes articles like these deeply, profoundly disturb the bobbLebot…not just on the topic of what’s considered news, but just how damn seriously some reporters take such inane topics.  REPORTERS.  PAID, FREELANCE REPORTERS.


But here’s a report from Fox Wall Street Journal:

Too Fit to Be President?

Facing an Overweight Electorate,
Barack Obama Might Find
Low Body Fat a Drawback

Yes… yes, they are totally for CeReaL. And I’m totally talking Tony-the-Tiger-Snap-Crackle-and-Pop for cereal.  In fact, this may be our new for-cereaLity.  (And can someone PLEASE stop with the idiot polls on which candidate you’d rather shop, barbecue, drink beer, play a game of Wii bowling or eat Campbell’s Chunky Soup with???!!!  JUST STOP THE MADNESS!!!)

The candidate has been criticized by opponents for appearing elitist or out of touch with average Americans. A Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll conducted in July shows Sen. Obama still lags behind Republican John McCain among white men and suburban women who say they can’t relate to his background or perceived values.

apparently im too healthy for America

apparently i'm too healthy for America

“He’s too new … and he needs to put some meat on his bones,” says Diana Koenig, 42, a housewife in Corpus Christi, Texas, who says she voted for Sen. Hillary Clinton in the Democratic primary.

So let the bobbLebot get this straight: Obama – the way he is marketing himself – is so eloquent, so cool, so physically and charismatically ideal that he just isn’t “with it” with the mediocrity that is the UniteRed States.  The ghost of the eradicated “left-ist” in me (was I ever really Leftist?  buh.  i wuz sucher poseR!!!) is yelling, “THIS IS WHAT 8 YEARS of DUBBYAH’s doggone DONE to the American PubLic!!”

“I won’t vote for any beanpole guy,” another Clinton supporter wrote last week on a Yahoo politics message board.

Great.  So now they’re citing message boards?  Is this how lazy they’re getting?  Or just out of touch with reality?  Or is it EYE?  Is it the bobbLebot who is out of touch with ReaLity?

According to Sen. Obama’s Chicago physician David Scheiner, the senator works out regularly, jogs up to three miles a day when he can, and has “no excess body fat.”

Dr. Scheiner didn’t disclose his patient’s exact weight, but medical observers estimate that the 6-foot-1.5-inch-tall senator appears to weigh at least 10 pounds less than the roughly 190 pounds that the average American man of his height weighs. The Obama campaign declined to comment for this article.

Though Sen. McCain cannot lift weights due to injuries he suffered as a prisoner of war in Vietnam, he “walked the Grand Canyon rim to rim in August 2006” and hikes whenever he can find the time, according to John D. Eckstein, an internist in Scottsdale, Ariz., who treats Sen. McCain. At roughly 165 pounds, his weight is slightly above average for a 5-foot-7-inch man his age, according to nutritionists.


And no, this is not a report by The Onion.  This is “Real News.”

While most voters don’t base their decision on physical appearance alone, a candidate’s height, weight and overall look can play a big role in what Americans perceive as “presidential,” says Thomas “Mack” McLarty, former chief of staff to President Bill Clinton.

Auuuugh.  You see how they psyche you out there with the “Yeah, most people don’t vote based on PHYSICALITY per se… (faux morality check) BUT…”

But too much time in the gym can cause problems, as Sen. Obama learned last month after he made three stops to local Chicago gyms in one day, for a total of 188 minutes. The marathon workout session sparked a widely circulated Associated Press article titled “Obama Becomes a Gym Rat.” In it, the reporter wrote, “Sometimes it’s hard to tell if Barack Obama is running for president of the United States or Mr. Universe.”

what can I say?  i likes to jogs on ze jobs.

what can I say? i likes to jogs on ze jobs.

Republicans have recently picked up on the senator’s fitness regimen. On Wednesday, the McCain campaign launched a new ad titled “Celeb” that compares Sen. Obama to Paris Hilton and Britney Spears. In a memo to reporters explaining the ad, McCain campaign manager Rick Davis wrote, “Only celebrities like Barack Obama go to the gym three times a day.”


::bangs harddrive against the wall::

It. Just. Doesn’t. STOP!!!

Struggles with weight-loss, on the other hand, can make a candidate seem more human. Some aides winced when footage of a sweat-drenched Mr. Clinton jogging into a McDonald’s in Little Rock, Ark., aired ahead of the 1992 campaign. But the footage is widely believed to have helped the then-governor of Arkansas connect to voters in conservative-leaning states like Georgia and Tennessee, which eluded Democrats in 2000 and 2004. These states have a statistically higher number of overweight people than Democratic strongholds.

“It says: ‘He’s just like one of us,”‘ says Arthur English, a political-science professor at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock who used to see Mr. Clinton stop in for fries and a Big Mac after his three-mile jog.

It says, “He’s just as mediocre as one of us.”  Cuz that’s what we want for America.  Rachel Ray for president.

Sen. Clinton has said she tried Weight Watchers to keep the pounds off during her presidential bid — a tidbit that appealed to her core of middle-age female supporters that Sen. Obama is now trying to woo.

Sen. Obama is not without vices. According to Dr. Scheiner’s medical report, he has quit smoking “on several occasions and is currently using Nicorette gum with success.” People close to the senator say he began smoking nearly three decades ago and smoked about five cigarettes a day.

Some voters say that even this adds to Sen. Obama’s somewhat superhuman persona. “I mean, really, who quits smoking and doesn’t gain any weight?” says 30-year-old Stella Metsovas, an Obama supporter in Laguna Beach, Calif.

Is this how human value – yeh, let’s forget for a moment the FUNCTION of the presidency – is measured?  Quantified?  In one’s fallibility?  Granted, Obama is a Leo and is hence a CONTROL FREAK (which explains hitting the gym several times and Nicorette-chain-chewing), it bothers the bobbLebot that people crave to see some sort of inane mediocrity – however constructed it may be.

This reminds bobbLebot of mommy issues where mummy dearest tried to thrust a consumption disorder upon it.  Buh… too much personal information… buh…

But for serious!  It’s like, “Fail, FAIL!  Show us you’re a lazy slob like one of us!  Become a part of this mob of mediocrity!  Don’t make us feel bad for being stupid, fat and lazy!  FAIL!  WE NEED TO SEE YOU FAIL SO WE CAN FEEL BETTER ABOUT OURSELVES!  BECAUSE WE’RE TOO LAZY TO HOPE FOR OURSELVES TO ASPIRE TO BECOME SOMETHING BETTER.”

Dude.  America needs a shrink.  This is what too much privilege does to people: self-imposed neuroticisms.  A voluntary inducement of depression.  Going to Burning Man to find oneself.  (Yes, “leftists,” you, too, are guilty!!)

Not that I take in huge stock into the idea of new world leaders and new world orders, but the people VOTING for these peoples supposedly DO.  So I find it frakkin insane and diabolically disturbing that people are just eating up this ONTD/PITNB/Perez Hilton way of marketing presidential candidates.  I don’t know if media outlets are laughing at their audience or, more disturbingly, actually take this kind of packaged, plastic reporting seriously.

Eye is troubled.  Not self-destructicating, not frazzled, not short-circuiting.  Just really, profoundly troubled.


running away from the mediocrity!

augh! he's taking the wrong tactic: running away from the mediocrity!

July 29, 2008

Report Faults Aides in Hiring at Justice Dept.

Filed under: Eeeeep!,Government,Politics,There's way too many categories — disciplepete @ 12:12 am

This is some pretty shady shit. NYT:

Senior aides to former Attorney General Alberto R. Gonzales broke Civil Service laws by using politics to guide their hiring decisions, picking less-qualified applicants for important nonpolitical positions, slowing the hiring process at critical times and damaging the department’s credibility, an internal report concluded on Monday.

A longtime prosecutor who drew rave reviews from his supervisors was passed over for an important counterterrorism slot because his wife was active in Democratic politics, and a much-less-experienced lawyer with Republican leanings got the job, the report said.

Another prosecutor was rejected for a job in part because she was thought to be a lesbian. And a Republican lawyer received high marks at his job interview because he was found to be sufficiently conservative on the core issues of “god, guns + gays.”

The report, prepared by the Justice Department’s inspector general and its internal ethics office, centered on the misconduct of a small circle of aides to Mr. Gonzales, including Monica Goodling, a former top adviser to the attorney general, and Kyle Sampson, his former chief of staff. It also found that White House officials were actively involved in some hiring decisions.

July 24, 2008

China Presses Hush Money on Grieving Parents

Filed under: Government,Politics,World News,WTF — disciplepete @ 10:50 am


Local governments in southwest China’s quake-ravaged Sichuan Province have begun a coordinated campaign to buy the silence of angry parents whose children died during the earthquake, according to interviews with more than a dozen parents from four collapsed schools. Officials threaten that the parents will get nothing if they refuse to sign, the parents say.

Chinese officials had promised a new era of openness in the wake of the earthquake and in the months before the Olympic Games, which begin in August. But the pressure on parents is one sign that officials here are determined to create a facade of public harmony rather than undertake any real inquiry into accusations that corruption or negligence contributed to the high death toll in the quake.

Officials have come knocking on parents’ doors day and night. They are so intent on getting parents to comply that in one case, a mayor offered to pay the airfare of a mother who left the province so she could return to sign the contract, the mother said.

The payment amounts vary by school but are roughly the same. Parents in Hanwang, a river town at the foot of mist-shrouded mountains, said they were being offered the equivalent of $8,800 in cash and a per-parent pension of nearly $5,600.

July 20, 2008

Nepal holds presidential run-off

Filed under: Eeeeep!,Elections,Government,Politics,World News — disciplepete @ 11:38 pm

Al Jazeera:

Nepal’s governing assembly has begun voting in a run-off to elect the country’s first president.

The selection of the first head of state since the abolition of a 240-year-old Hindu monarchy could bring the ruling Maoist politicians a step closer to forming a coalition government.

Political parties have squabbled for weeks over who should get the largely ceremonial post…

The country has been stuck in political limbo since the assembly sacked King Gyanendra and abolished the monarchy in a meeting on May 28.

July 18, 2008

President George W Bush backs Israeli plan for strike on Iran

Filed under: Government,Politics,War,World News — disciplepete @ 9:08 am

Times Online:

President George W Bush has told the Israeli government that he may be prepared to approve a future military strike on Iranian nuclear facilities if negotiations with Tehran break down, according to a senior Pentagon official.

Despite the opposition of his own generals and widespread scepticism that America is ready to risk the military, political and economic consequences of an airborne strike on Iran, the president has given an “amber light” to an Israeli plan to attack Iran’s main nuclear sites with long-range bombing sorties, the official told The Sunday Times.

“Amber means get on with your preparations, stand by for immediate attack and tell us when you’re ready,” the official said. But the Israelis have also been told that they can expect no help from American forces and will not be able to use US military bases in Iraq for logistical support.

Chomsky: Bush & Cheney Always Saw Iraq as a Sweetheart Oil Dea

Filed under: Gas,Government,Grassholes,Politics,World News — disciplepete @ 9:03 am


The deal just taking shape between Iraq’s Oil Ministry and four Western oil companies raises critical questions about the nature of the U.S. invasion and occupation of Iraq — questions that should certainly be addressed by presidential candidates and seriously discussed in the United States, and of course in occupied Iraq, where it appears that the population has little if any role in determining the future of its country.

Negotiations are under way for Exxon Mobil, Shell, Total and BP — the original partners decades ago in the Iraq Petroleum Company, now joined by Chevron and other smaller oil companies — to renew the oil concession they lost to nationalization during the years when the oil producers took over their own resources… 

…Iraq contains perhaps the second-largest oil reserves in the world, which are, furthermore, very cheap to extract: no permafrost or tar sands or deep-sea drilling. For U.S. planners, it is imperative that Iraq remain under U.S. control, to the extent possible, as an obedient client state that will also house major U.S. military bases, right at the heart of the world’s major energy reserves.

That these were the primary goals of the invasion was always clear enough through the haze of successive pretexts: weapons of mass destruction, Saddam Hussein’s links with al Qaeda, democracy promotion and the war against terrorism, which, as predicted, sharply increased as a result of the invasion.

July 16, 2008

Poll Finds Obama’s Run Isn’t Closing Divide on Race

Filed under: Culture,Politics,Race — disciplepete @ 9:17 am


Americans are sharply divided by race heading into the first election in which an African-American will be a major-party presidential nominee, with blacks and whites holding vastly different views of Senator Barack Obama, the state of race relations and how black Americans are treated by society, according to the latest New York Times/CBS News poll.

The results of the poll, conducted against the backdrop of a campaign in which race has been a constant if not always overt issue, suggested that Mr. Obama’s candidacy, while generating high levels of enthusiasm among black voters, is not seen by them as evidence of significant improvement in race relations…

More than 80 percent of black voters said they had a favorable opinion of Mr. Obama; about 30 percent of white voters said they had a favorable opinion of him.

Nearly 60 percent of black respondents said race relations were generally bad, compared with 34 percent of whites. Four in 10 blacks say that there has been no progress in recent years in eliminating racial discrimination; fewer than 2 in 10 whites say the same thing…

As it was eight years ago, few Americans have regular contact with people of other races, and few say their own workplaces or their own neighborhoods are integrated. 

The article’s a good read, check it out.

July 12, 2008

Paul Krugman’s Blind Spot

Filed under: Gas,Government,Politics,World News — disciplepete @ 10:01 am

Article from Counterpunch which talks about the economy, the Iraq war, Bush Administration policies, and NYT columnist Paul Krugman’s oversights on these issues in one of his recent columns.

In a New York Times column on Monday (“Behind the Bush Bust”), economics columnist Paul Krugman mused on whether President George Bush could be blamed for the nation’s economic crisis. His conclusion was that, yes, to some extent the crisis was Bush’s fault, but he largely lets the current administration off the hook, instead blaming Republican policies dating back 10-15 years…

…The gaping hole in Krugman’s logic is the Iraq War, which the columnist, incredibly, doesn’t even mention. Yet clearly, the invasion and subsequent war and occupation of Iraq which was purely the result of Bush/Cheney machinations, has been a major, if not the major cause of oil price increases.

By destroying Iraq’s oil production, and by hindering much of Iran’s production (Iran, seen as an enemy by the US, has been frozen out of capital markets, blocking it from being able to modernize and even maintain its own huge oil infrastructure), and putting even Kuwait’s and Saudi Arabia’s production at risk, the US war in Iraq has jeopardized about one-third of the world’s oil capacity—a fact not lost on oil speculators.  Every rumor of a longer occupation or a wider war in the Middle East—especially a possible attack by the US on Iran–has pushed up oil prices further, as has every attack on a pipeline…

…At the same time, the massive amount of industrial production that has gone into the war effort—the building of planes, tanks, armored cars, etc.—while perhaps producing some jobs, has been wholly inflationary in its effect, since this is production that cannot add to available goods and services in the civilian economy. That means that there are more people with wages and salaries, chasing the same number of things to buy—a sure-fire recipe for higher prices. Add to that the huge war budget, all funded by debt, and you have even more downward pressure on the dollar.


July 9, 2008

Iran Reports Missile Test, Drawing Rebuke

Filed under: Politics,World News — disciplepete @ 8:22 pm

So much drama, and it’s making our gas more expensive!! Although there are definitely bigger issues than that hanging in the balance here. NYT:

PARIS — Iran’s Revolutionary Guards test-fired nine missiles in war-game maneuvers on Wednesday, including at least one the government in Tehran described as having the range to reach Israel.

The tests drew sharp American criticism and came a day after the Iranians threatened to retaliate against Israel and the United States if attacked…

…The tests, shown on Iranian television, coincided with increasingly tense exchanges with the West over Tehran’s nuclear program, which Iran said is for civilian purposes but which many Western governments suspect is aimed at building nuclear weapons. On Tuesday, the United States and the Czech Republic signed an accord to allow the Pentagon to deploy part of its contentious antiballistic missile shield, which Washington maintains is intended to protect in part against Iranian missiles.

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