....LMB: "The Dumb Crusade"....

June 18, 2002

Earlier this week, George W. Bush declared a new doctrine of "pre-emptive self-defense" (a policy in violation of international law, if anyone cares) and authorized the CIA to use lethal force to remove Iraqi president Saddam Hussein.

This plan to invade Iraq has been visible to the naked eye for months now, and I've yet to hear a truthful and compelling reason why, apart from "we would like to have their oil." Well, I have heard one new reason why (in the article discussed below), "Donald Rumsfeld is very interested in getting rid of Saddam Hussein because he wants to reduce the amount of money required to keep troops in the Persian Gulf to patrol Saddam Hussein."

Hell, I don't know what else I can say about this that I haven't already said several hundred times. I'm opposed to an attack on Iraq. It'll kill a lot of innocent Iraqis. It'll kill a lot (okay, some) American soldiers. It'll make Arabs hate the US more. It'll make the region more unstable. There's no guarantee that Iraq will be any better under a new leader than it was under Saddam Hussein. If the invasion was coupled with a plan to help rebuild Iraq and institute a stable, democratic, Iraqi-centered government, maybe I could support it.

So yeah, here're some links.

Iraq and Ruin- interesting at least because it is a mainstream news article that analyzes other mainstream news articles. Pretty much debunks most of the "Iraq's gonna get your momma" stories. Ends on the creepy note that even the military is not real keen on attacking Iraq because (among several reasons) Saddam might turn chemical and biological weapons on the US troops. Thanks George, we were all dying to see the sequel to "Gulf War Syndrome".

"The Reckoning: Iraq and the Legacy of Saddam Hussein". The interview imparts more information about the internal politics of Iraq than I've heard in, well, ever. She describes Iraq as a prison constructed by Saddam and guarded by his efficient army of thugs. If Saddam is deposed, the country will likely turn into a civil war along ethnic and tribal lines. There is also some interesting description of Iraq as a tribal society, and what that means.

Posted by Jake at 09:49 PM

"Donald Rumsfeld is very interested in getting rid of Saddam Hussein because he wants to reduce the amount of money required to keep troops in the Persian Gulf to patrol Saddam Hussein."

Just like all the money we saved when the Cold War ended, right? Anyone remember the "Peace Dividend"?

Don't look now, but Rummy just called you a moron.

Posted by: Pearl at June 19, 2002 05:30 PM
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Lying Media Bastards is both a radio show and website. The show airs Mondays 2-4pm PST on KillRadio.org, and couples excellent music with angry news commentary. And the website, well, you're looking at it.

Both projects focus on our media-marinated world, political lies, corporate tyranny, and the folks fighting the good fight against these monsters.

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Media News

November 16, 2004

Tales of Media Woe

Senate May Ram Copyright Bill- one of the most depressing stories of the day that didn't involve death or bombs. It's the music and movie industries' wet dream. It criminalizes peer-to-peer software makers, allows the government to file civil lawsuits on behalf of these media industries, and eliminates fair use. Fair use is the idea that I can use a snippet of a copyrighted work for educational, political, or satirical purposes, without getting permission from the copyright-holder first.

And most tellingly, the bill legalizes technology that would automatically skip over "obejctionable content" (i.e. sex and violence) in a DVD, but bans devices that would automatically skip over commericals. This is a blatant, blatant, blatant gift to the movie industry. Fuck the movie industry, fuck the music industry, fuck the Senate.

Music industry aims to send in radio cops- the recording industry says that you're not allowed to record songs off the radio, be it real radio or internet radio. And now they're working on preventing you from recording songs off internet radio through a mixture of law and technological repression (although I imagine their techno-fixes will get hacked pretty quickly).

The shocking truth about the FCC: Censorship by the tyranny of the few- blogger Jeff Jarvis discovers that the recent $1.2 million FCC fine against a sex scene in Fox's "Married By America" TV show was not levied because hundreds of people wrote the FCC and complained. It was not because 159 people wrote in and complained (which is the FCC's current rationale). No, thanks to Jarvis' FOIA request, we find that only 23 people (of the show's several million viewers) wrote in and complained. On top of that, he finds that 21 of those letters were just copy-and-paste email jobs that some people attached their names to. Jarvis then spins this a bit by saying that "only 3" people actually wrote letters to the FCC, which is misleading but technically true. So somewhere between 3 and 23 angry people can determine what you can't see on television. Good to know.

Reuters Union Considers Striking Over Layoffs- will a strike by such a major newswire service impact the rest of the world's media?

Pentagon Starts Work On War Internet- the US military is talking about the creation of a global, wireless, satellite-aided computer network for use in battle. I think I saw a movie about this once...

Conservative host returns to the air after week suspension for using racial slur- Houston radio talk show host (and somtime Rush Limbaugh substitute) Mark Belling referred to Mexican-Americans as "wetbacks" on his show. He was suspended for a couple of weeks, and then submitted a written apology for the racial slur to a local newspaper. But he seems to be using the slur and its surrounding controversy to boost his conservative cred with his listeners.

Stay Tuned for Nudes- Cleveland TV news anchor Sharon Reed aired a story about artist Spencer Tunick, who uses large numbers of naked volunteers in his installations and photographs. The news report will be unique in that it will not blur or black-out the usual naughty bits. The story will air late at night, when it's allegedly okay with the FCC if you broadcast "indecent" material. The author of this article doesn't seem to notice that Reed first claims that this report is a publicity stunt, but then claims it's a protest against FCC repression. I'd like to think it's the latter, but I'm not that much of a sucker.

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Mission: Mongolia

Jake's first attempt at homemade Mongolican barbecue:


What went right: correctly guessing several key seasonings- lemon, ginger, soy, garlic, chili.

What went wrong: still missing some ingredients, and possibly had one wrong, rice vinegar. Way too much lemon and chili.

Result: not entirely edible.

Plan for future: try to get people at Great Khan's restaurant to tell me what's in the damn sauce.

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