Lying Media Bastards

May 31, 2006

It’s Only Truth If You Tell Me What I Want to Hear

Yesterday, the President a small meeting of six “experts” to give their “honest opinions” about Iraq.

One of those six was Amir Taheri, the PR agent who wrote the totally fraudulent article about the Iranian government forcing Jews to wear colored armbands like they did in Nazi Germany. As you’ll recall, it turned out that no such law existed, and that Taheri really didn’t have any sources for his claims at all. Straight scare-mongering.

On the plus side, maybe Bush wasn’t turning to the paid liar for “honest opinions.” Maybe he wanted to hire him to spread more lies on the neocons’ behalf.

Posted by Jake on May 31, 2006 11:20 am

Lack of Donuts

I don’t mean to turn this into the “All Things ‘Bad Cop No Donut‘ Blog”, but we’ve got some related developments.

These events occured the very morning that I interviewed Ron. His words:

You will not believe this.

On Thursday morning a Toronto police SWAT team raided CKLN during my show, Bad Cop, No Donut! The station was on auto-pilot at the time because I was not well and was offered a ride to my front door by a friend and left about an hour before they arrived. CKLN has still not officially said a word to me about it.

I actually found out about it from what I pieced together from other ckln volunteers who had heard rumours but assumed I knew all about it. Many of them sent confusing emails like “I heard the cops really didn’t like their show this week.” By this morning i managed to get someone
from the station’s management who confirmed that this was true.

Apparently, the police say that someone listening to my show believed that someone at ckln was being attacked and called 9-1-1. If you listen to the show there is a segment where a recording is played of the police torturing a man in tennessee. This is obviously the segment in question. If you heard the show you could have noted a few things which would indicate to any person of average intelligence that there was no attack taking place at CKLN. For example:

1) The swearing was beeped out
2) The people heard on the recording all had thick tennessee accents
3) There was a 20 minute interview prior to the recording with the journalist in Tennessee who covered the torture case for the local paper
4)There was a huge disclaimer by me immediately before the torture recording segment
5) i am not a drug dealer, nor is anyone else at ckln as far as I know, as the victim of the recorded beating definitely is
6) the segment ended with an Alice Cooper song, unlike most live beatings

Assumming that the person who called 9-1-1 failed to notice these things, then we are expected to believe that the police, who we can assume at least turned on their radio to check, also did not notice these things.

Oh yeah, and we would also have to believe that the cops were coming to ckln to save me.

And we would have to believe that a fully armed SWAT team was an appropriate response to the police version of what was happening.

I dont have to tell you how I feel about this.

As of this moment i think the most important thing I can do is get the word out.

I’m obviously disappointed that there has been no real word yet from CKLN but I am hoping I can view our internal security video of the event. I’m sure I’ll know more soon. But honestly, what I know right now is quite troublesome.

I obviously believe that I would have been arrested, if not badly beaten had i actually been there. I consider myself to be extremely lucky. The police version of events is just too impossible to be
believed. Since they have not come after me at home, I assume that they are just trying to show me what a dangerous place ckln is for me in yet another attempt to shut down my show.

I’m not sure what the best course of action is. I have a short term game plan but I am going to consider some legal options eventually.

I sincerely hope that this is all some coincidental, ridiculous, comedy of errors shit, with a confused radio listener and an overreaction from police. But the cops know Ron, don’t like the work he does, and responded seemingly without turning on the radio themselves or calling the radio station to see what was happening. It’s pretty chilling to think that if Ron hadn’t gone home early, that North America’s only Cop Watching radio show would have been raided by the SWAT team on flimsy pretext. And Ron’s probably right that justified or not, he probably would have been arrested (cops don’t like looking stupid) and beaten (when cops look stupid, they get angry).

To hear the show that allegedly caused the 911 call, go here. The segment is an audio recording of corrupt cops in Tennessee torturing a man, trying force him to sign a document to give them permission to search his house (starts at about 36:40 on the mp3, pretty disturbing stuff). And you can hear an interview with Ron about the raid here.

My interview with Ron, before we knew about the raid is here

Posted by Jake on May 31, 2006 9:26 am

May 29, 2006

The Slow Civil War

Jesus. Iraq is ruined. Just ruined.

Every morning the streets of Baghdad are littered with dozens of bodies, bruised, torn, mutilated, executed only because they are Sunni or because they are Shiite. Power drills are an especially popular torture device…

The sectarian tensions have overtaken far more than Iraq’s security forces and its streets. Militias now routinely enter hospitals to hunt down or arrest those who have survived their raids. And many Iraqi government ministries are now filled with the banners and slogans of Shiite religious groups, which now exert total control over these key agencies. If you are not with them, you are gone.

For instance, in the negotiations between parties after the January 2005 elections, Sadr loyalists gained control over the ministries of health and transportation and immediately began cleansing them of Sunnis and Shiites not aligned with Sadr. The process was officially known by the Sadrists as “cleansing the ministry of Saddamists.” Indeed, some government offices now do not accept Sunnis as employees at all…

This is when sectarian cleansing truly began. Sunni refugees in Amriya seized homes vacated by Shiites. These operations were conducted by insurgents as well as relatives of the refugees. Soon such cleansing had become widespread and commonplace, both out of vengeance and out of its own cruel logic; both sides took part. There was no space left in Iraq for nonsectarian voices. Sunnis and Shiites alike were pushed into the arms of their respective militias, often joining out of self-defense. Shiites obtained lists of the Baath party cadres that were the foundation of Hussein’s regime and began systematically assassinating Sunnis who had belonged. Sunni militias that had fought the American occupier became Sunni militias protecting Sunni territory from Shiite incursions and retaliating in Shiite areas. The insurgency became secondary as resistance moved to self-defense. In the Shiite-dominated south, meanwhile, Shiite militias battled each other and the British forces…

Sectarian and ethnic cleansing has since continued apace, as mixed neighborhoods are “purified.” In Amriya, dead bodies are being found on the main street at a rate of three or five or seven a day. People are afraid to approach the bodies, or call for an ambulance or the police, for fear that they, too, will be found dead the following day. In Abu Ghraib, Dora, Amriya and other once-diverse neighborhoods, Shiites are being forced to leave. In Maalif and Shaab, Sunnis are being targeted.

The world wonders if Iraq is on the brink of civil war, while Iraqis fear calling it one, knowing the fate such a description would portend. In truth, the civil war started long before Samarra and long before the first uprisings. It started when U.S. troops arrived in Baghdad. It began when Sunnis discovered what they had lost, and Shiites learned what they had gained. And the worst is yet to come.

Posted by Jake on May 29, 2006 10:20 pm

May 25, 2006

LMB Radio 5-25-06

LMB Radio 5-25-06

In-depth interview with Ron Anicich, host of Bad Cop, No Donut, the “weekly radio program that reviews criminal acts committed by law enforcement.” We talk about all sorts of aspects of policing in North America (Ron’s from Canada), ranging from police history, corruption, abuse, racism/classism/sexism, community policing, police reform and more. Cop, cop, cop, cop, cop, cop, cop!

During the show, Ron mentions organizations which provide aid to women who have been abused by their police officer husbands or boyfriends. I’m going to get some address and links from him about that and post them here.

Music includes KRS-One, The Coup, Strike Anywhere, 1905, the Clash, and Johnny Cash.

Oh, today was also the RadioActive Open Mic Poetry Night, which was a staggering success. We recorded the whole thing and will be editting and uploading it in the near future.

Posted by Jake on May 25, 2006 11:36 pm

May 24, 2006

Event-astic!

1) As previously mentioned, I’ll be interviewing radio show host and cop watchdog (as in, he watches the cops), Ron Anicich on my radio show tomorrow. Yes, you lazy bastards, I’ll be recording it so you don’t have to bother tuning in. 1-3pm PST, radioactiveradio.org if you’re interested; if want to ask a question live (send an IM to radioactivesd).

2) RadioActive San Diego will be holding its first open mic poetry night tomorrow evening (Thursday) at the spiffy lounge area outside our studio. 7:30pm, 3612 Maple St., San Diego, CA. If you like poems and finger snapping, come on by.

3) June 3, RadioActive is holding a joint benefit concert featuring Hijos de la Malinche, the Batwings, the Rabbits, and Hostile Comb-Over. Between sets, I think me, Trashcandy and Amalthea are gonna be DJing. At Voz Alta in San Diego. Proceeds will go to RASD, Voz Alta, and the San Diego Independent Media Center.

Come join in all the San Diegan, music-related fun!

Posted by Jake on May 24, 2006 11:17 pm

May 23, 2006

No One Expects the Radio Inquisition!

On Thursday, I will be interviewing Ron Anicich, host of the Bad Cop, No Donut radio show. We’ll be talking about the police, corruption, brutality, the justice system and other related topics.

Have any questions for Ron? Email me or post them in the comments and I’ll try to include them in my interrogation of Mr. Ron. Thanks.

Posted by Jake on May 23, 2006 10:04 pm

Angry Closure

I’m really not sure what the purpose of funerals are. I suppose to religious people, the funeral is a necessary ritual to send a loved one’s soul off to wherever, according to the rules of their faith. And I’m sure there are all sorts of sociological answers about closure and community and whatnot. I suppose there are a thousand different reasons dependent on individuals and circumstances, but I just feel confused about it all. I went to a funeral this weekend, got mad, stayed mad, cried, and left mad. I suppose it served a purpose, because I think I wouldn’t have dealt this this death otherwise; I would’ve tried to ignore it and bury it, like putting a hat on a headwound. But pardon me for being befuddled just the same.

While Naomi and I had drifted quite a bit, back in college she was easily the most important person in my life. Elegant yet messy, bratty but tender, defiant yet fuzzy. A creative, intellectual indie-pop grrrl with goth tendencies. From the moment we first met, there was a deep connection, the type which I’ve rarely had with others, where communication is almost… automatic. There was this level of comfort knowing that whatever I was trying to express, she was going to get it, whether I did a good job explaining myself or not.

I can’t point to many specifics, but Naomi had more influence on making me the person I am today than anyone outside the family who raised me. Anybody out there who knows me and likes me now, you owe her thanks. I don’t think she “taught” me many things, it was just the experiences we shared, her points of view, and the ways that I reacted and changed because of all that.

More than anything, Naomi was about sharing and independence. She shared everything and inspired the same in return, sometimes in odd, provocative or uncouth ways. Maybe she’d eat food off your plate, use you for a pillow, or invite you under the covers to stay warm. And her independence wasn’t fist in the air rebellion, it was casually making her own rules with little notice of what other people did or thought. Wearing pajama pants under a skirt, for example, or deciding that gestures of affection meant care and not flirtation. Rules are flexible, rules are negotiable, and we have considerable control over that.

Knowing Naomi also broke down a bunch of my preconceived gender stereotypes, as I met more manly women and feminine men than I ever had before or since. Made me throw my hands in the air and say that I don’t know what it means to be a man or a woman. I think that the openness she brought out in people also helped me see her and many of her female friends more clearly and completely, more as “people” than as “women”, something that society doesn’t teach us so well. That’s what it came down to. There’s just people.

But Naomi wanted to be a doctor. Which meant, I realized retrospectively, that these close times really only amounted to two or three years. At that point, she was sucked deeper and deeper into the obsessive study of the Med Student (Med Students are, by nature, crazy). And as more time passed, our rare conversations were rather mundane exchanges of me ranting about politics that she hadn’t read about and her confusing me with doctor jargon that I didn’t understand. People go their own ways sometimes.

Around four years ago, Naomi was having breathing trouble and started receiving treatment for tuberculosis. Which might have been helpful if she’d had tuberculosis, and not a rare form of lung cancer. Two years went by before she was properly diagnosed (about a year after her wedding), at which point she had to give up an entire lung to save her life. Would she be alive today if that first doctor hadn’t fucked things up? I don’t know, but it seems entirely possible.

After near-constant struggle with the cancer and chemo and complications and ventilators and insurance companies and drugs and depression, she finally succumbed earlier this month. Two years to the day, after her initial major surgery, they tell me.

The funeral was Saturday in Los Angeles, at a tiny chapel at a tiny cemetery hemmed in by skyscrapers in Westwood. Weird. Happily, there were so many folks in attendance that they overflowed the chapel, overflowed a patio section with chairs, and overflowed a patio section without chairs. I think I stood in some grass somewhere.

I got angry almost as soon as I arrived, as it looked like Mark, Naomi’s husband, was being forced to play host. He was right by the entrance, and a small line had formed in front of him to give condolences, like the reception line at a wedding. And Mark appeared to feel the need to be a good host, cordially greeting everyone, attempting to be somewhat upbeat. I was angry that everyone was putting him through this. But, I mentally conceded, maybe he was doing this to protect Naomi’s parents from the onslaught. Still…

Then I was angry that some folks seemed to be using this as a social occasion. Well, okay, it was. I mean, funerals can be big events where people who haven’t seen each other in years come together and reconnect, and that’s not a bad thing, so I guess I can’t blame them. But I did anyway.

Then I was angry because I discovered the funeral was open casket. I fucking hate that. I don’t want my last memory of a family or friend to be their immobile, awkwardly make-up-ed corpse! I want to remember them alive and vivid and happy. Open casket means that 1) I have to go out of my way to not see the body and 2) other people are replacing their last memories of a living person with the memory of a dead body.

The ceremony started, I calmed down, but was filled with raw, burning empathy for Naomi’s family and husband. I know how this feels. I don’t know how they were holding up so well. Most of my family was a fucking wreck at my mom’s funeral. I guess it helped that they had their faith, that Naomi was in Heaven now and that they’d see her again. I’ve had no such comfort, but I can see the fucking appeal. Almost nothing hurts me more than thinking about if there were a Heaven, and my mom was up there and happy, and looking down on me all smiling and proud– yet not believing in such a thing at all. Pained sweetness, like a mouthful of broken teeth.

And I got mad at the Christian aspects of the service. Why is so much of Christianity creepy? We’re supposed to be happy that God is our overlord and that He can empathize with us since He had a Son die too and that Naomi’s pain was a good thing because it brought her closer to God?

But I guess funerals are a place to wrap things up, at best a time to say “I’ll miss this person.” But not for the most vital feelings, not for the “I want her back! I want her back NOW!” that I imagine everyone must have felt. Maybe that’s what my anger was, at heart. I’m mad that she’s gone, mad at a doctor that screwed her over, mad that I can’t make her come back.

Posted by Jake on May 23, 2006 12:00 am

May 20, 2006

Paid to Lie

Undoubtedly, many of you saw reports this week claiming that Iran had passed Nazi-like laws that would force religious minorities to wear Nazi-like colored armbands, which made us all cry “Oh my god, Iran is acting like the Nazis.”

While the story spread quickly, it turned out to have a single source, author Amir Taheri (more on him later), printed in Canada’s right-leaning National Post. And in Taheri’s story, the fact that Iran is passing these laws is simply stated, and has no source. No, “the Tehran Times reports” or “legislation voting records show that”. The closest we get is “confirmation” of these claims which came from nowhere, by “Iranian expatriates living in Canada”. Later, one of these expatriates is revealed to be a man named “Ali Behroozian”. So that’s it. “There’s this law”, “Iranian immigrants agree” and “here’s one of those immigrants.” The article also includes many responses to the “news” by world leaders and Jewish organizations, but it seems that these people heard the news and responded without doing their own research. I imagine they’re going to be pissed later.

Granted, a small number of sources doesn’t make an article false, but it does mean that you should try to find more evidence before believing shocking charges such as those in this article.

It seems that the National Post has pulled the story from its website (although you can read a reprint here).

Now, it turns out that author Amir Taheri is an employee of PR firm Benador Associates. What does Benador specialize in? “The areas of media applied to politics, conflict resolution, the dialogue of civilisations, foreign policy, national security, anti-terrorism, defense of human rights and freedom of religion.” Benador’s clients have included some of the more prominent neo-cons and Iraq war apologists.

First of all, you should never print articles by PR agents. NEVER. Their professional goal is to trick you into believing what their clients want you to believe. Maybe, maybe you could print a PR agent’s article if was some sort of commentary about the state of the PR industry, and even then you should be suspicious. But when a neo-con-leaning PR agency sends you an juicy article that gives reasons to invade a neo-con target? Alarm bells should be ringing.

So not only is the original article short on sourcing, not only was it written by a paid propagandist, but it turns out that anyone with any actualy knowledge of Iranian legislation is refuting it. True, it does appear that the alluded-to law has to do with religion and clothing, but it seems to be a clarification of what fashions are appropriate for women to wear under the rules of Islam. And while that’s oppressive and fucked up, remember that these rules are handed down by the theocratic government, not the will of the people. It is my understanding that the people of Iran are actually fairly progressive, but have been unable to get out from under the religious rule.

I imagine that this story will a) make the name National Post a laughing-stock among informed individuals, while simultaneously b) sticking in the minds of many as a sign that Iran is a Nazi-like danger to the world.

Posted by Jake on May 20, 2006 10:00 am

May 19, 2006

Merde

So the Senate is voting to make English the “national” language of the United States to “promote unity.” That’s one of the stupidest fucking things I’ve ever heard of. Yeah, nothing will bring all people together like telling millions of them that the language they speak most comfortably is un-American.

Posted by Jake on May 19, 2006 9:21 am

May 18, 2006

LMB Radio 5-18-06

LMB Radio 5-18-06

- border censorship
- “Dear NSA” (sadly, much funnier in text)
- deadly ethanol
- “I love you, carbon dioxide!”
- net neutrality opponents try to trick Gen X with clever slacker-friendly campaign. “Yeah, ‘groovy’.”
- liberal bloggers sell out / the dangers of accepting advertising
- Fast Food Nation: the Movie
- Bill O’Reilly: conspiracy theorist
- immigration again
- 10NewsUnfair.com. Check it out.
- America admits war crimes in Iraq
- Jake’s discussion of war crimes is thwarted by a cat in the studio
- corporate globalization in the Middle East (will be put on the site this evening)

Musically, we’ve got Billy Bragg, Nouvelle Vague, Blur, Marilyn Manson, the George W. Bush Singers, the Raconteurs, Nas, Cage, Jello Biafra & the Melvins, Irving, the Oohlahs, Masta Ace & Jean Grae, Old Crow Medicine Show, the Coach Whips, Giant Drag, and more.

Sound’s a little glitchy in the intro, sorry. And that cat, Jesus. Selfish as they come.

Next week I’ll be interviewing Ron Anicich of Bad Cop, No Donut.

Posted by Jake on May 18, 2006 9:18 pm

May 15, 2006

The Iron Ear

This evening, the president gave a big speech about his plans to combat illegal immigration. I think that this speech was a blatant attempt to draw attention away from his massive domestic spying plan, so let’s avoid his trap and get back to talking about the surveillance.

I was a little hasty last week when I said that the NSA’s “keep phone records of all Americans” plan was illegal. I don’t know my data-mining law, so it might be kosher. Except that the USA Today article which broke the story, said that the NSA didn’t want to take details of their program to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act Court (FISA Court) because the court “might not agree” with the NSA’s interpretation of law. And since the FISA court actually decides if specific NSA spying efforts are legal, a disagreement essentially means “it’s illegal.” But hey, nice try on the part of the NSA. “Yeah, I got arrested for stabbing a guy in the face, but I didn’t bother showing up for the trial cuz I figured me and the judge were gonna disagree.”

And of course, we must also love the president’s response to having the light of day shine upon his dark, nefarious schemes. He held an emergency press conference to announce that the government was “not mining or trolling through the personal lives of millions of innocent Americans.” Heavens no. Y’see, the president is just an avid collector. Some people collect stamps, others collect baseball cards, and the president happens to collect data about American’s phone conversations. Billions and billions of phone calls.

Yes, you are mining and trolling through our personal lives, you fucker. Find a better lie.

And we’ve seen at least one political use of these powers. Apparently the government is, at the very least, using the program to monitor the calls of news reporters from ABC, the NY Times, and the Wasington Post, to figure out who the reporters’ confidential sources are. While I’m sure you can argue that the White House is doing this to plug leaks that threaten national security, I’d laugh at you. These fuckers have shown little regard for national security, but oceans of paranoid concern about their own secrets and their own public image. The government is spying on reporters so that it can punish the anonymous sources who are making the government look bad.

Granted, we can’t say for sure that the program to monitor the reporters is necessarily the same one that’s spying on the rest of us; the articles above say that the agency spying on us is the NSA, while the agency spying on the journalists is the FBI. Maybe the NSA lets the FBI take their data out for joyrides on weekends, I dunno.

But let’s get deeper here. Recent articles show us the Bush feels that he can write the law. Over 750 times since he took office, Bush has approved Congressional bills, and then added “signing statements”, in which he says what he thinks the bill means and how it should be applied. For example, Bush signed the bill which would ban the US military from using torture on prisoners, but added a signing statement that says that since he’s the commander-in-chief of the armed forces, that Congress can’t tell him what to do regarding the military. When he signed a bill granting stronger protections for whistle-blowers at the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) and Department of Energy, Bush’s signing statement said that the executive branch could ignore the new protections. And on and on it goes.

In addition, the Bush administration tries to avoid facing judicial review whenever possible (despite just appointing two uber-conservatives to the Supreme Court!). They bypassed the FISA court for their phone number database and secret wiretapping. When the Department of Justice tried to investigate the wiretapping, the NSA threw up so many roadblocks that DoJ gave up. When the Court decided that “enemy combatant” Yaser Hamdi deserved a trial, the government simply released him (after holding him for years). When enemy combatant Jose Padilla was about to have his legal status reviewed by a court, the government abruptly dropped those charges and attached criminal charges, sending him to a different series of courts. And I seem to remember a number of Guantanamo inmates being released lately, just before they too would have had a court make decisions about the legalities of their detention.

So you’ve got a government who’s flimsy sense of fairness backed up by the tug of war between three separate branches, except that without the other two’s notice, the Exeuctive has run off with the rope. And they think they’ve got a good excuse: “the president’s greatest duty is to protect the country. And we’re a country at war! His Constitutional duty to protect the nation outweighs his Constitutional duty to obey the law.”

Now, I don’t want to say that Bush is a dictator. That implies that he is alone, or that this is all his idea. No, Bush rules as part of a team, lead by Dick Cheney, Donald Rumsfeld, and Karl Rove, with some help from Condoleezza Rice. Bush isn’t the emporer, he’s the spokesman for a cabal, a ruling clique, a mafia.

And it gets worse. More about that later.

Posted by Jake on May 15, 2006 6:46 pm

May 11, 2006

LMB Radio 05-11-06

LMB Radio 05-11-06

- Big Brother Is Watching You and Taking Notes
- Verizon, AT&T, and BellSouth are traitorous motherfuckers
- Justice Department ends investigation of NSA wiretapping cuz NSA tells them to
- Let’s all laugh at Duke Cunningham
- Vile NYC DJs threaten to molest rival DJ’s child, get fired
- Japanese to criminalize dissent? Stop copying us, Japan!
- May 1 protests (yeah, a little late, sue me)
- Competing moralities about immigration
- Patriotismo Americano
- Liberals, please stop sucking Neil Young’s cock
- video game system wars spill over (aka the New Format Wars)

Music includes RJD2, Public Enemy, Hot Chip, Bad Brains, Bruce Springsteen, Lightheaded, the Sea and the Gulls, the Coup, Marit Larsen, Mindless Self Indulgence, Moka Only, Le Tigre, Lily Allen, Graveworm, Sonic Youth, Lifesavas, the Black Keys, and more.

Exciting show today, crammed full of brand new tunes (well, some brand new, some just never played on this show before). Lotta hip-hop, Springsteen doing Irish folk, a black metal cover of REM, and more.

Posted by Jake on May 11, 2006 11:43 pm

May 10, 2006

Trust

So you remember a bunch of months ago, when the New York Times said that the government was involved in massive, illegal surveillance of our telephones? And how President Bush said that no, they were only wiretapping the calls of Al Qaeda operatives?

Turns out that that the president was telling a big lie.

According to the USA Today article above (which sadly, is based almost entirely on anonymous sources), the NSA, in collaboration with AT&T, Verizon, and BellSouth, has been creating a massive database of phone activity of tens of millions of Americans, “most of whom aren’t suspected of any crime… The agency’s goal is ‘to create a database of every call ever made” within the nation’s borders.’”

To back down the scariness slightly, it doesn’t look as though the NSA is actually listening to all our calls, or that they are compiling dossiers on everyone’s call activity, just sort of making lists of who’s calling who (well, they say that they’re just using phone numbers, not names, but come on).

So the Land of the Free has a phone monitoring system that makes the KGB look like the Keystone Cops. Yeah, didn’t see that one coming. If you believed in what Bush said, you’re an idiot.

I don’t say that as an attack on Republicans, actually. You can like the president. You can share his values, whatever. But as he has shown again and again, you can’t trust him. He lies and lies and lies again. So if you think he’s the greatest, fine, just know that when he says things, there’s a real good chance they’re not going to be true (but to be fair, that’s most world leaders).

Got nothing interesting to say on this one. Administration that lies and breaks the law in the search for power turns out to have lied and broken the law to increase its power? Shocking. It’s appalling, of course, but I just can’t be surprised about it.

Oh, and thanks phone companies, for rolling over for the bellyscratch when the jackboots came knocking. I wanna call up Verizon and tell them to fuck themselves and cancel my cellphone account, except… who am I going to switch to? Fucking oligopolies.

Posted by Jake on May 10, 2006 8:32 pm

DJ Crosses the Line, Doesn’t Look Back

Madre de Dios!

This is some of the most fucked up shit I’ve ever heard of on radio. This makes Rush Limbaugh look like Jesse Jackson.

Basically, DJ Star (aka Troi Torain), of “The Star and Buc Wild Morning Show” at NYC’s Power 105, has a bit of a problem with DJ Envy (aka Raashaun Casey), who has a show at a rival station in New York. And apparently, Star went batshit crazy on the air.

DJ Envy’s wife is Asian-American, and Star goes after her with racist and sexist shit that is absolutely off the charts. AND IT GETS WORSE. Star starts offering his listeners $500 to tell him where Envy’s 4-year old daughter goes to school, so that he could piss on her and ejaculate on her. He repeatedly says that he’s “coming for her”, and then mentions how he carries a gun and how his friends are all ex-cons so that there’s no way that the girl is safe from them. That’s pretty fucking terrifying.

If you want to read it in all its foulness, you can click the link at the beginning of this post. I’ve given you the super-clean version.

I’m a supporter of free speech and all, but Jesus! Graphically threatening to molest someone’s kid over the air? He must be off his meds. Star also calls himself “The Hater”. Maybe if you’re a radio station, you don’t want to give a nationally-syndicated show to someone who revels in their hate.

Now all of this might have gone unnoticed, if a New York city Councilman hadn’t put out a press release and given a press conference where they played the audio of this show. I’m glad to report that Star was suspended, and then fired.

But the Civil Defense blog feels that this isn’t enough. Power 105 is owned by Clear Channel (shock), and Joshua argues that Clear Channel is profiting off of racism and hate speech like Star’s, and that they should be held accountable as well (it’s not like CC didn’t know what sort of stuff is said on that show). He gives several examples of campaigns going on to revoke Clear Channel’s radio licenses, and says that we should support actual community-based, non-corporate radio as well. Sounds good to me.

Posted by Jake on May 10, 2006 5:58 pm

Fake It Till You Make It

The Yes Men strike again, this time masquerading as members of Halliburton’s “Emergency Products Development Unit” at the Catastrophic Loss conference.

[Thanks to lotu5]

Posted by Jake on May 10, 2006 11:41 am

May 9, 2006

Feel the Burn

Jesus.

“According to [a UN] report, a full 25 percent of Iraqi children between six months and five years old suffer from either acute or chronic malnutrition.”

While the child mortality rate in Iraq is slightly down from the days of sanctions, the rate has increased since the US invaded in 2003.

But that’s okay, cuz they’re all liberated and stuff.

Posted by Jake on May 9, 2006 8:52 am

May 8, 2006

Hooray?

Well, I am cautiously optimistic that I may have avoided the temporary site shut-down. Last week, I realized that my domain name, lyingmediabastards.com, was about to expire. And the renewal process, which normally should have taken about three mouse clicks to accomplish, instead took five days of emails, phone calls, failed transfer attempts, grinding teeth, etc. But things seem to have finally been resolved this morning, the day after the domain officially expired. I think this means we’re in the clear.

The reason for all this confusion was that my official domain registrar was a company that hosted my site several years ago. But since I no longer had an account with them, I there was no way I could ask them to renew it. And every step I took that seemed to be the logical way of solving the problem made things worse. The moral of the story is “don’t do that.”

So I think we’re good. Today I’ll be busy up in LA, recording some new Axis of Justice radio shows with guest host Wayne Kramer of the MC5. Should be interesting.

But I will soon return to my ranting, and we can all do the dance of joy.

Posted by Jake on May 8, 2006 8:24 am

May 6, 2006

Ah, Technology

Due to equal parts techno-nonsense and bureaucratic crap, this site might go down for a few days next week. Hopefully it won’t, and if it does, hopefully it will come back quickly. Or, I suppose it might not.

If you need to reach me, maybe you oughtta write my other address for the next week, lmbradio at gmail.

Sigh.

Posted by Jake on May 6, 2006 4:35 pm

May 4, 2006

No Show

Sorry, no LMB radio show today. Basically, I’m waiting for a call back from tech support. Long story.

Posted by Jake on May 4, 2006 11:08 am

May 3, 2006

Smirking Truth to Power

Yeah, everyone in the free world is probably familiar with this already, but I can’t ignore this weekend’s comedic humiliation of the press corps and president by Stephen Colbert (ignore, no. Procrastinate for half a week, apparently).

Every year, the White House Correspondent Association throws a fancy dinner/gala, a time for the president and the Washington journalist set to make nice and remind each other of their symbiosis, and remind keen-minded Americans that the press and the president are not enemies, they’re on the same team.

For some reason, the Dinner organizers decided to hire Stephen Colbert to be the keynote speaker, where he could do his satiric “I’m an arrogant right-wing pundit asshole” shtick. Colbert took the stage, with his audience surely expecting snark and a few zings. They weren’t prepared for the long knives.

You’ve gotta watch or read this thing. Video here, transcript here.

My favorite bits:

Now, I know there are some polls out there saying this man has a 32% approval rating. But guys like us, we don’t pay attention to the polls. We know that polls are just a collection of statistics that reflect what people are thinking in “reality.” And reality has a well-known liberal bias…

I mean, it’s like the movie “Rocky.” All right. The president in this case is Rocky Balboa and Apollo Creed is — everything else in the world…

I stand by this man. I stand by this man because he stands for things. Not only for things, he stands on things. Things like aircraft carriers and rubble and recently flooded city squares. And that sends a strong message, that no matter what happens to America, she will always rebound — with the most powerfully staged photo ops in the world…

The greatest thing about this man is he’s steady. You know where he stands. He believes the same thing Wednesday that he believed on Monday, no matter what happened Tuesday…

Mayor Nagin is here from New Orleans, the chocolate city! Yeah, give it up. Mayor Nagin, I’d like to welcome you to Washington, D.C., the chocolate city with a marshmallow center. And a graham cracker crust of corruption. It’s a Mallomar, I guess is what I’m describing, a seasonal cookie.

So Colbert stood maybe 20 feet from the president, and mocked the shit out of him, reminding him of his flaws and failures, while pretending it was lofty praise. As if that wasn’t enough, plenty of Colbert’s speech was also an attack on the press themselves. He went in there exposed them for the incompetent bastards they are.

As excited as I am to be here with the president, I am appalled to be surrounded by the liberal media that is destroying America, with the exception of Fox News. Fox News gives you both sides of every story: the president’s side, and the vice president’s side.

But the rest of you, what are you thinking, reporting on NSA wiretapping or secret prisons in eastern Europe? Those things are secret for a very important reason: they’re super-depressing. And if that’s your goal, well, misery accomplished. Over the last five years you people were so good — over tax cuts, WMD intelligence, the effect of global warming. We Americans didn’t want to know, and you had the courtesy not to try to find out.

Fox News jokes are easy to make, but Colbert whips around and accuses the mainstream press of not even trying to research and report vital stories of the past five years. And he’s completely right. Every news outlet oughtta have at least one person saying “hey, you know what’s important? Climate change, fake rationales for war, a food supply tainted by pesticides and antibiotics, racism, sexism, and poverty. Let’s cover that instead of printing another piece about Paris Hilton.”

And I enjoyed the gag during Colbert’s recorded segment where he pretends to be the new White House press secretary, where he looks down at the secret buttons hidden on his podium: “Eject”, “Volume”, and “Gannon.” While Jeff Gannon is usually mocked as the male prostitute who pretended to be a reporter, he was more prominently the fake reporter who the White House let into press conferences to lob softball questions in case of emergency. That there would be a button for the press secretary to summon him cracked me up.

Not surprisingly, Colbert’s act did not get many laughs from the audience. But, you don’t do a routine in which you call everyone in sight a corrupt cowardly asshole and expect them to love you for it. And the reporting showed it. You’d think that a comedian harshly ridiculing the president to his face in front of hundreds of journalists and politicians would be newsworthy. And you’d be wrong. Reporting about the Dinner actually focused on a gag that Bush did earlier in the program with a Bush impersonator, and pretended like Colbert hadn’t been there at all. Go figure.

One more point. Maybe journalists ought to stop being so nice to the White House. Reporters, they are not your friends. The government is now talking about arresting you folks if you print information leaked to you. Friends don’t draft legislation to arrest each other. Think about that one.

Posted by Jake on May 3, 2006 10:27 am

May 1, 2006

A Day Without an Immigrant or Sunscreen

Tired and kinda sunburnt from all the radioing and marching and driving today. Don’t have too much to offer till I get some sleep. But the protests and boycott seem to have gone well. It is frustrating how disjointed and camoflagued the debates on the issue are. And I am thoroughly amused by this article by Lou Dobbs, in which he makes himself look like an idiot.

[update]

Oh for fuck’s sake. The local Fox affiliate is running promos for tonight’s news that start off with neutral statements about the immigrant protest, then something about “sex offenders getting across the border, and how they’re a threat to San Diego.”

[/update]

Posted by Jake on May 1, 2006 7:27 pm

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