....LMB: "The Union, State of"....

January 23, 2004

Last year I did a real blow by blow analysis of Bush’s State of the Union address, inserting my own comments and context in between relevant portions of the speech. I began taking on a similar task with this year’s SOTU, but after several attempts, I’ve realized I don’t have much interesting to say on the subject (well, except maybe my little historical tidbit*).

The only thing of substance I could do would be to analyze some of Bush’s domestic proposals (his foreign policy stuff is mostly self-congratulatory lies). You can read some of the fine print of these proposals on this page of the White House website. But take it with a grain of salt, as Bush doesn’t need to show his full hand until he shows his whole budget plans in early February, and then the dance really begins. I might revisit those later.

The only non-domestic proposal worth mentioning is his increased funding for the National Endowment for Democracy (NED). Which is really something of a front organization for supporting factions in foreign countries who’s goals match those of the US government (i.e. the NED might give money to a pro-free-market political party in another country to help American business make a profit in that country).

But I can’t let you go away empty-handed. Here’s a bunch of good links about the SOTU done by others. Read the first one (a parody) or you’ll regret it.

The 2004 State of the Union Address- the satirists at whitehouse.org are inside Bush's fucking head. Prepare to laugh and wince.

The Kitchen-Table State of the Union- how the nation looks to regular working families, mainly on economic issues.

Bush's Defiant State of the Union- Nation magazine editor David Corn tears into Bush.

Behind the Address- USA Today does a little fact-checking...

State of the Union 2004: Myth and Reality- "author and anti-war activist" Rahul Mahajan's rebuttal to Bush's claims. Mahajan seems to have just started his own blog called Empire Notes.

IPA Takes on the State of the Union- the Institue for Public Accuracy is a left-wing organization that encourages journalists to look outside the box and interview less common, less conventional folks for alternative points of view on current events. Here are some short comments by some of those "less" folks.

Warnings During Wartime- Village Voice says that Bush's speech was mainly plans to enrich the wealthy and promises to exploit the conservative Christian vote.

The White House's Truth Deficit- blogger Calpundit finds that Bush's plans to decrease the deficit by 50% by 2009 will not only fail, but will actually increase it slightly.

* From 1801 to 1913, there were no State of the Union addresses. Thomas Jefferson thought it was the sort of thing that a king would do, so he just sent written copies of his address to both houses of Congress and let them read it themselves. 112 years went by, and the for some reason, Woodrow Wilson decided that he ought to give his address as a speech.

Posted by Jake at 11:01 PM | TrackBack (0)

Jake, what's your take on Bush's Moon and Mars proposals? I guess this means that globalization is at its end on this planet and the time has come for "galacticization." I can see Shell Oil on the moon...Who would have thought science fiction wouldn't be all fantasy? LOL.

Posted by: Eric at January 26, 2004 11:15 AM

I think Huey from "The Boondocks" expresses my feelings nicely:


Posted by: Jake at January 26, 2004 11:50 AM

My problem with Bush is that he's turned the US, in the eyes of the world, from a role model into an object lesson.



Posted by: Ed Drone at January 27, 2004 09:16 AM
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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.

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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.

Posted by Jake at 04:02 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)
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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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