Lying Media Bastards

June 30, 2003



Iraq: Everyone Now Needs Food Aid- "'Today, the lives of 100 percent of the Iraqi population, 27 million people, depend on the provision of monthly food rations,' UNICEF chief representative in Iraq Carel de Roy told IPS in a phone interview.

"The United Nations WFP (World Food Program) chief representative in Baghdad Torben Due says the crisis is unprecedented. 'To avoid a food crisis in the country we have initiated the largest emergency operation in the 40 years history of the WFP.'"

Well, to be fair, 60% of the Iraqi population was dependent upon monthly food rations before the war. But by golly, we made sure those other 40% didn't feel left out.

Those Iraqis might starve to death, but at least they'll starve to death free.

Or maybe not.

Posted by Jake at 12:27 PM | Comments (3) | TrackBack

June 29, 2003

Conservative Evil

Two good finds from Emma:

Bush, Looking to His Right, Shores Up Support for 2004- the interesting bit to me is that Bush has hired Ralph Reed, former head of the Christian Coalition, as a "senior member" of his campaign team.

Frist Backs Putting Gay Marriage Ban in Constitution- "Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist (R-Tenn.) said yesterday he supports a proposed constitutional amendment to ban gay marriages in the United States. Frist said the Supreme Court's decision last week on gay sex threatens to make the home a place where criminality is condoned... 'I have this fear that this zone of privacy that we all want protected in our own homes is gradually -- or I'm concerned about the potential for it gradually being encroached upon, where criminal activity within the home would in some way be condoned,' Frist told ABC's 'This Week.'"

Right. Somehow your right to have private sex in your own home will surely evolve into the right to commit private murders in your own home. Frist isn't doing this out of homophobia, or as a means to pander to his homophobic constituency, but because he's concerned about crime.

Lord knows, the right to have private sex in your own home might turn into the right to perform experimental surgery on stray cats in your own home, right Dr. Frist?

Posted by Jake at 11:20 PM | Comments (9) | TrackBack


Can anyone explain to me why they support Howard Dean as the Democratic candidate for president? To me, it seems his only positive qualities are 1) he was against the Iraq war and 2) he isn't George W. Bush. Apart from that, he seems like a man who looked at all the criticism that liberals have levelled at Republican policy and said "how can I implement 5% of that criticism?"

Maybe I'm missing something, but he seems like an asshole.

Posted by Jake at 11:10 PM | Comments (23) | TrackBack

June 28, 2003


Just seems like there's no new news to write about these days. The stories are always the same. The Bush administration is lying. The Bush administration is giving money away to the rich. The situation is bad in Afghanistan. The situation is bad in Iraq. North Korea is hopping mad, wishing that we'd pay attention to them.

But I'll do a bit of summary on recent badness developing in Iraq.

First, according to Dack's count, 62 U.S. soldiers have been killed since Bush pronounced that major hostilities were over from the deck of that aircraft carrier. That's about one-third as many as were killed during the war phase of this operation. That's not good.

Second, the U.S. doesn't seem to know what the hell it's doing when it comes to rebuilding Iraq. It's obvious that the Iraqi people want life to return to normal as quickly as possible, and that means that means rebuilt cities and the departure of U.S. troops. The longer it takes to accomplish number one, the more trouble it will be for the fellows in number two.

Third, "U.S. military commanders have ordered a halt to local elections and self-rule in provincial cities and towns across Iraq, choosing instead to install their own handpicked mayors and administrators, many of whom are former Iraqi military leaders." Read that again. Remember how we went into Iraq to eliminate a dictator and spread democracy through the Middle East? Yeah, this action is going to turn out well.

Fourth, and this may seem like I'm kidding at first, but Baghdad's air conditioning is failing. The temperature in Iraq can reach up to 140 degrees Farenheit duing the summer. Already, the heat is up to about 117 degrees. This is bad. Extreme heat puts everyone on edge, and increases the chances that anger and tension will boil over into violence.

Fifth, "The bodies of two U.S. soldiers missing for days were discovered early Saturday northwest of Baghdad", and honestly I consider this good news. These soldiers were abducted two days ago, and I suddenly had a flashback to hostage crises of the 1980s. Not only would something like that depress and anger the fuck out of America, but it would likely dry up any existing American sympathy for the Iraqi people. "They kidnapped one of ours, we should kill em all!" The fact that these soldiers are merely "casualties" instead of hostages being imprisoned and tortured might be better on everyone.

The cry of "U.S. out of Iraq" is being taken up by a number of anti-war groups. It's a double-edged sword. Leaving Iraq finally gives the people their liberation, but it leaves their country in a shambles. Remaining in Iraq is against the Iraqi people's wishes, but it could lead to the country's rebuilding. Or, it could just be a handover of the nation's wealth and institutions to White House corporate cronies. Not sure which way to lean on this issue.

Posted by Jake at 01:12 PM | Comments (4) | TrackBack

June 25, 2003

Conservative Thought Patterns

For quite sometime now I've meant to write a long article explaining the conservative point of view to left-wing folks. In graduate school, I spent three consecutive semesters researching the American conservative ideology, conservative talk radio, and Rush Limbaugh for one of my professors (which means that I hate Rush Limbaugh more than you do, no matter who you are). At some point during the study, I had an antropologist's moment, where I was able to understand the mental framework, the way that conservatives' concepts, beliefs and values supported and reinforced each other. I couldn't disagree with it, and found many logical flaws in the belief structure, but I could see where they were coming from.

One day, I will write this article to explain to all the liberals and commies and anarchists who look at conservatives with absolute bewilderment, nearly certain that these people are not just wrong, but evil.

Today is not that day.

But I've found a good replacement.

On Calpundit's site today, he had a nice post about economic inequality and immobility in the United States. The rich get richer, the poor get poorer, and making the jump from poor to rich is getting to be harder and harder.

But in the comments following the article, I found a comment that got you halfway to understanding the conservative point of view. It was written by a fellow named Tim, who has his own blog here. I'm just going to reprint Tim's comments:

Conservatives are winning the debate because they have shifted the arguments to that of character alone...

By shifting the debate to one of character they've essentially won the war. It rhetoricaly fits every one of their issues: We live in a free country where everyone has an equal opportunity so if someone is poor it's because they have bad character. If someone is rich they have good character- there's no other reason for rich and poor. So, there's no reason to tax progressively, to do so would be punishing those that have good character and rewarding those that have bad character.

Every argument turns into one of character. Bad public schools? Let people go to private school! If they can't afford to that's they're own fault, they're poor because they have bad character, those with bad character don't deserve a hand-out. Lower taxation of capital? Only someone with good character is able to build capital, they shouldn't be punished for having good character. Estate tax? Only someone with good character was able to build all that wealth, they shouldn't be punished. Allowing corporations to set their own environmental standards? A corporation is led by people who made it, and therefore have good character, so of course they can be trusted. Racism? There is no other reason for racism than individuals with bad character acting badly. No such thing as institutional racism, no such thing as historical context, nothing but some people with bad character (so therefore no reason to reform anything or promote anything via things like AA).

The desire to dismantle social programs? Social programs only benefit those with poor character, why should people with good character pay to give hand-outs to those with bad character?

Of course some jackhole will probably refute this claim on a literal basis (as if I mean pundits and politicians are literally talking about "character"), but it seems pretty obvious to me. The modern conservative platform makes no sense whatsoever unless you think of it as a basic argument between good and bad character. None of their programs do what they say they'll do. Supply-side economics does not increase tax income, nothing trickles down; standardized tests do not improve schools, less environmental regulation does not mean less pollution; bombing Iraq does not mean less terrorism.

It's pretty easy, they do it themselves. Iraq? Saddam was bad, 'nuff said. France? They're arrogant, 'nuff said. Santorum? He's a good guy, 'nuff said. And on and on and on. It's a very easy debate to win, all they have to do is smear the other side and lie about their programs. If they never admit to lying, it's the same as not lying. After all, Bush, for example, is the president. He wouldn't be there unless he had good character. People with good character don't lie, they only make mistakes.

That is a significant portion of conservative ideology. It's the belief that if someone tries hard enough, they will be successful. If they are not successful, it's evidence that they need to try harder. Trying hard is a sign of good character. Refusing to try hard is a sign of poor character. Therefore someone who is a corporate CEO or a wealthy entrepreneur must have good character, because they must have worked hard to get to where they are. And someone who is poor must not have good character because they have not worked hard enough to pull themselves out of poverty.

That's only one of several pillars of the conservative belief system, and obviously most conservatives have points of view that are more flexible or nuanced. But these are some of the principles that are at the core.

Posted by Jake at 07:09 PM | Comments (16) | TrackBack

Mindlessly Anti-Bush

It's no secret that I hate George W. Bush. But I'd like to think that my desire to get the man out of office (and ideally into a prison cell) does not overwhelm the rest of my faculties and values. But it seems like some lefty-minded folk have let their drive to oust Bush get the better of them.

Here's the story: it appears that before 9-11, Bush had opportunities to kill Osama bin Laden in Afghanistan using the CIA's predator drones, but failed to order the attack. And now some liberals are flogging Bush (or at least his abilities to protect the nation) for this failure.

Well, first let's properly describe the situation.

Bush had the opportunity to order an assassination of bin Laden, and didn't. If he had, such an act would have been illegal. Presidents are prohibited from ordering assassinations.

So... liberals are criticizing the president for following the rules of his office and not assassinating someone. That's not the usual line liberals take.

I also feel the need to point out that assassinating bin Laden would not necessarily have prevented the 9-11 attacks. Sure, it's possible that killing bin Laden might have disrupted Al Qaeda, or that if bin Laden was the one who designed or ordered the 9-11 attacks that those plans and orders never would have come into existence. Or... maybe those terrorists who hijacked the planes would have done the exact same thing.

I also feel fairly certain that if this situation were reversed, if Bill Clinton was under attack for failing to assassinate bin Laden, that the liberals would be defending him by bringing up all the points that I just did.

Partisanship. It ain't pretty.

Of course, we can look at the current scenario objectively. Is it morally acceptable to assassinate someone? Is it acceptable for the president to be able to assassinate people? If not, is Osama bin Laden a special case in which it would have been acceptable? Would this assassination have been the smartest tactic to use? Did the intelligence data at the time suggest that bin Laden was a threat worthy of using this creepy kill power? And probably on most people's minds, would this assassination have protected the Americans who died on September 11? Lots of questions, lots of room for debate, very few answers.

Posted by Jake at 06:53 PM | Comments (11) | TrackBack

Let the File-Sharer Beware

Just heard this news:

Music Industry to Sue File-Sharers

Music companies are poised to sue thousands of people who share songs on the Internet, escalating their attack on piracy with a strategy that many in the music industry have long hoped to avoid.

The Recording Industry Assn. of America today announced plans to spend the next month identifying targets among the estimated 80 million people using file-sharing networks, focusing on those offering a "significant" amount of songs for others to copy. Then, in August, the RIAA plans to file its first lawsuits on behalf of record companies, RIAA President Cary Sherman said...

Sherman said the RIAA will begin collecting the Internet addresses Thursday of those who offer copyrighted songs for others to copy though file-sharing networks. There's no minimum number of files that will trigger a lawsuit, he said, adding that "offering even one file without permission is one too many."

So there's your warning, folks. If you download mp3s off the internet, you should probably move most of your files to a folder that you do not allow other folks to download from. Granted, it looks like the RIAA will only go after you if you have a "significant" amount of songs that other people want, which probably means if you've got lots of top 40 artists, you should be cautious. But theoretically, they can go after anyone.

Just a heads up.

Posted by Jake at 01:30 PM | Comments (4) | TrackBack

Propaganda Prevue!

The Republicans have been working on plans for the future website of the Bush-Cheney re-election campaign for 2004. And apparently, someone accidentally left the rough draft of the site online and unprotected for a few hours this week, and a columnist for online magazine Slate ran across it... is now shut and secure, but the Slate fellow managed to get some choice screengrabs so we can see what webs are being spun. The snappy, heroic photos of Bush are the best, I think. Bush hiking in the mountains (or in front of its blue screen equivalent), Bush staring at something or other with his hands on the shoulders of schoolchildren, Bush in a cowboy hat, Bush manhandling the elderly, etc.


Heh, I thought about making a joke using the last photo there, the rather creepy one of Bush holding the hand of a woman who looks like death warmed over. But doing so seemed kind of tasteless. Lucky for me, the folks at Soundbitten have done it for me.

Posted by Jake at 10:54 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

SkyNet is Here

This creeped me the fuck out.

20 Questions

Apparently it's a computer program designed to try to guess any object you're thinking of based upon the responses you give to its, yes, 20 questions.


Microphone, fingernail, puddle (although it did take it 28 questions to guess "puddle")

Honestly, the creepiness probably comes from the shock. The machine asks you questions that seem barely connected to the object at all, and then bam! After question 20, it nails it.

First the computers are doing parlor tricks, then they'll be running our households, and then they'll be killing us by the truckload and driving over mountains of our skulls in big tank things. Just you wait and see.

Posted by Jake at 10:17 AM | Comments (8) | TrackBack

June 23, 2003

Edits, Updates & Sneak Previews

1) A few weeks back, I announced that I would be spending my summer on the Lollapalooza concert tour, running a political activism tent. Turns out I spoke too soon. I am organizing the tent, but someone else will be taking my place on the tour to run it. Someone made the excellent point of "how exactly are you going to run two non-profit organizations while spending your days sitting in the middle of a field in Ohio?" I'll probably be on the first week of tour dates (Indianapolis, Kansas City, St. Louis, and maybe Milwaukee), and then maybe fly out for a couple of other shows mid-tour to make sure everything's still working smoothly (NYC, Denver, I dunno). A Mini-palooza, if you will. If you attend the show, feel free to try to find me, and if I'm not there, drop me a line and tell me what you thought.

2) A site redesign is in the works. My pal Mark (I'll withhold his last name, in case he's into that), former webmaster of the Rage Against the Machine website, has volunteered to re-engineer the LMB site. Frankly, my plan is to copy some of the layout of Dack's Rational Enquirer site. I'm tired of generic blog layouts. It will also allow me to present many types of information in a more logical, efficient way (I think). And I think my plan will also encourage me to write more about media issues and news, the alleged theme of this damn site.

3) Perhaps most importantly, our pal Garrick is planning on again returning to the Occupied Territories this summer. You may remember Garrick from his powerful email reports that I compiled into a page called Reports from Palestine. If you haven't read them, I highly recommend it. I also interviewed Garrick on my radio show back in November, that's worth a listen (although the sound quality is poor, sorry).

Anyhow, Garrick has expressed an interest in doing the same thing this summer, having me upload his emails to my site (although I think I'll make a few changes to that page, and blogify it). Now that I think about it, I have no idea how he'll get into the country, given recent Israeli laws prohibiting peace activists from entering the Occupied Territories. But if he makes it in, I'll post his reports on the site.

That's it. Time to sleep.

Posted by Jake at 01:13 AM | Comments (4) | TrackBack

June 22, 2003


via Body and Soul and Nathan Newman:

The organization has made itself a bit of a player in the world of Democratic politics. I first became aware of them in the past year, when they raised large amounts of cash to place anti-war ads on newspapers and on billboards. Now they seem determined to support the Democratic party, and move it in a more traditionally liberal direction.

Lately, they've been announcing a "primary", and will throw their support behind the Democratic candidate who gets the most votes.

Unfortunately, it appears that the lunatic conservatives over at the Free Republic have decided to sabotage the primary.

Their plan is apparently to register as many names and email addresses as they can, and vote for someone they feel is unelectable: Al Sharpton.

Amusingly, some of them are too afraid to participate because they are terrified to "register with a communist organization [sic]."

Something to keep an eye on.

Posted by Jake at 11:55 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

June 20, 2003

Fair and Balanced and Frequently Wrong

This is some excellent work.

Fibbing It Up at Fox

Author Dale Steinreich examines Fox News Channel's war coverage and lists the "lies, propagation of lies, exaggerations, distortions, spin, and conjecture presented as fact." Good stuff, go read now.

Posted by Jake at 10:14 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

June 19, 2003

Congress vs. the FCC

Senate panel passes bill to overrule FCC media ownership rules

The Senate Commerce Committee has voted to eliminate the recent FCC decision to allow more media consolidation in the United States. That doesn't turn it into law, it just gets the bill onto the Senate floor for a future vote. Don't know where this will end up, but it's a good start.

Posted by Jake at 10:33 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

The Goods


If your pro-war friends demand to see your evidence that Bush and his pals lied about the reasons to invade Iraq, look no further.

The First Casualty is an amazingly comprehensive look at U.S. intelligence and the way it was manipulated, stretched, and distorted to support the plan to attack Iraq. Not a lot of the information here was new to me, but it took nearly all the data on the subject and packaged it neatly and succintly.

What was news to me was the role of CIA Director George Tenet had in all this. I had read many accounts by anonymous intelligence agents about the pressure put upon them by the Bush administration to find damning evidence against Iraq, no matter how shady. But this article argues that Tenet was fairly complicit in the lies and distortion of the agency's intelligence for political use. The article mentions that the White House "badger[ed]" Tenet into doing so, but also implies that he was willing to do these things to protect his job. After 9-11, Tenet was nearly crucified for alleged intelligence failures that led to the terrorist attack. Perhaps giving the Bush administration what it wanted was a way to keep his position.

I have been hearing rumors that if the "Where's the WMD?" issue becomes pressing, that Tenet would be the fall guy. Originally, I thought that this would be a shame, because my previous knowledge told me that the intelligence community was "innoncent" of wrongdoing here. Now I'm fine if Tenet gets the axe. But this article argues pretty persuasively that all our top leaders-- Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld, Rice, Powell-- had read all of the intelligence reports which concluded that Iraq was not much of a threat, and then told America and the world just the opposite.

Check the article, it's good stuff.

Posted by Jake at 09:32 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

June 18, 2003

Miller Time Travel

I used to really enjoy Dennis Miller. An extremely bright, sarcastic comedian, his style became known for its countless references to pop culture icons, ancient philosophers, politics, and literature. Funny, dark, and intellectual.

Then he got his own show on HBO. It had some bright moments at first, but fell into routine, and then mediocrity. Each show, Miller would give a monologue about some political issue, beginning it with "I don't want to get into a rant here, but..." and end with "that's just my opinion, I could be wrong." After the show had covered some of the most pressing issues of the day, they had to start selecting less important and more obscure ones which increasingly seemed silly or pointless or forced. And before long the show seemed to be more and more what it truly was: a guy halfheartedly reading his writing staff's Miller-esque text off a teleprompter.

And now, Miller has (as my friend John would say) gone to the Land of Suck. Not only gone to, but has purchased a lovely home and is thinking of running for mayor.

Not only has Miller lost his comic edge, but he has also become a right-wing shill, talking a good Republican game, supporting war, etc. He was actually heard to remark once that "George W. is my president." What a cock.

So given my great disappointment in the man, it is with great glee that I link to this article:

The Miller's Crossing

It's a fictional conversation between modern, sucky Dennis Miller and younger, funnier 1988 Dennis Miller. '88 gives his doppleganger quite a lashing. Good stuff.

Posted by Jake at 04:07 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Fucked Up News

DEA Uses RAVE Act Threats to Block Montana NORML/SSDP Benefit- maybe you've heard of the RAVE Act. Using the truly minor drug-related danger of rave parties on our nation's beloved and innocent teens, our government passed a law which effectively made venue owners responsible for any drug use going on at one of their functions. In other words, if you are a club owner, and someone in the audience smokes a joint while a band is playing on your stage, you can be arrested. As I recall, after failing to get legislative support several times, the RAVE Act was sneakily attached to the AMBER Alert bill, which was about finding children who'd been kidnapped.

As though that wasn't bad enough, we've got this recent incident in Montana. Two activist organizations who focus on reforming America's drug laws, were going to have a benefit concert at a local club. "On May 30, the day the event was set to take place, a Billings-based DEA agent showed up at the Eagle Lodge, which had booked the concert. Waving a copy of the RAVE Act in one hand, the agent warned that the lodge could face a fine of $250,000 if someone smoked a joint during the benefit, according to Eagle Lodge manager Kelly, who asked that her last name not be used." The scared club owner cancelled the show.

So essentially, agents of the U.S. government used this law to stifle political speech. They didn't actually apply the law, but the threat to do so was enough.

Protestors Are Not Terrorists- "Under the guise of President Bush's all-consuming, yet amorphous, war against terrorism, police agencies across the country are spying and compiling dossiers on citizens exercising their constitutional rights. The Bush administration – all war against terrorism, all the time – has consistently supported policies and legislation allowing for the collection and cataloging of data on the political, religious, or social views of individuals and organizations regardless of whether they present any imminent threat to the nation's safety."

Hidden Agenda- "In the short run, the Republicans hope to win in 2004 by running as tax cutters against tax-and-spend Democrats. In the long run, Republicans plan to starve and thus drastically shrink federal government, especially spending on social programs. As budgetary crises resulting from the tax cut unfold, the only solutions will be devastating cuts in programs—including Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid. And if the economy suffers, as is likely, the prescription will be more tax cuts."

The Screwing of Cynthia McKinney- many people consider former Congresswoman Cynthia McKinney to be a nutcase. Until reading this article, I was one of them. I never knew much about her, but I'd heard that she believed in several conspiracy theories that I considered crazy, and pretty much wrote her off. But this article, by smart journalist Greg Palast, says that she never was a conspiracy theorist. Palast traces McKinney's unsavory reputation to allegations that "McKinney implied that the [Bush] Administration knew in advance about September 11 and deliberately held back the information." And while many media outlets ascribed such beliefs to McKinney, Palast's research cannot turn up the original quotes that these claims must have ostensibly come from. He theorizes that McKinney's demand for a particular investigation ("why was Osama bin Laden's family off-limits to American intelligence pre-9/11, as ordered by the Bush administration?") was misinterpretted (intentionally or no) into these whacko conspiracies. Not 100% sure if Palast is right, but he generally seems to be a good reporter.

Supreme Court Battle of a Lifetime- "Reproductive rights, environmental protections and civil liberties could all be in danger if the one or two rumored vacancies on the U.S. Supreme Court this summer are filled by right-wing Bush nominees."

Posted by Jake at 09:16 AM | Comments (4) | TrackBack

June 17, 2003

Cola Wars

The other day, a friend of mine told me about a news story floating around about a Coca-Cola employee being fired for drinking a Pepsi. Funny, ironic and sad at the same time.


Now I found an article on the event, with a slightly different spin.

This article points out that perhaps the worker was not fired for drinking a rival soft drink, but for his unionize Coca-Cola workers several months prior.

Frankly, that explanation makes a lot more sense.

Posted by Jake at 09:47 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

June 16, 2003

Darn Those Revisionist Historians

Bush Blasts 'Revisionist Historians' on Iraq- "President Bush countered those questioning his justification for the invasion of Iraq on Monday, dismissing 'revisionist historians' and saying Washington acted to counter a persistent threat."

Takes one to know one, I guess. Let's check out Bush's own revisionism in the same article.

Said Bush, "Saddam Hussein was a threat to America and the free world in '91, in '98, in 2003. He continually ignored the demands of the free world, so the United States and friends and allies acted... This is for certain, Saddam Hussein is no longer a threat to the United States and our friends and allies."

1) Saddam Hussein was not a threat to America and the free world in '91. After 10 years of warfare, Saddam's army couldn't defeat Iran, let alone the world's number #1 military power, and/or the rest of the free world. Quite frankly, I've seen some compelling accounts that the invasion of Kuwait was simply a means to obtaining disputed oils fields on the border of the two countries, and that Iraq mistakenly believed that they'd gotten the thumbs up from the U.S. to go ahead with that plan. Remember, from the 1950s through early August 1990, Saddam Hussein was a "valuable asset" who helped keep Islamist Iran in line. But by the time late August rolled around, Saddam was Hitler. If that's not revisionist history, I don't know what is.

2) I'm really not sure what the 1998 comment refers to. I guess 1998 was when the UN inspectors left Iraq. Obviously, Iraq was even less of a threat to America and the free world after being soundly defeated in Gulf War I, and after enduring 7 years of strict economic sanctions. And if Iraq wasn't much of a threat in 1991...

3) For information about how Iraq was not a threat to the United States or free world in 2003, check just about any entry on this website.

4) "He continually ignored the demands of the free world, so the United States and friends and allies acted." EXTREMELY interesting interpretation of events. The "United States and friends and allies acted" not to protect themselves, or the free world, or to liberatre the Iraqi people, but because Saddam Hussein "continually ignored the demands of the free world." Is the theory that Iraq was invaded due to disobedience a revision of history, or an accurate account?

5) How are we certain that Saddam Hussein is no longer a threat to our friends and allies? No one knows if he's alive or dead! If he's still alive, and has any loyal, armed troops at his command, he could still cause some havok.

Damn those historical revisionists, damn them to hell!!

Posted by Jake at 08:26 PM | Comments (3) | TrackBack


David Bowie- Let's Dance
Mr. Lif & Edan- Get Wise '91
The Liars- mr your on fire mr
Asian Dub Foundation- Buzzin'
Cee-lo- Closet Freak
Squirrel Nut Zippers- Do It This Way
Hepcat- No Worries
Prince- Sexy M.F.
Prodigy- Smack My Bitch Up
Amon Tobin- Pirahna Breaks
Unkle- Unreal
Portishead- Theme for To Kill a Dead Man
Sisters of Mercy- Temple of Love
Skinny Puppy- Hardset Head
International Noise Conspiracy- Up for Sale
White Zombie- Super-Charger Heaven (Adults Only mix)
Plastilina Mosh- Banano's Bar
Nikka Costa- Master Blaster
Nine Inch Nails- A Warm Safe Place (Drum & Bass mix)
Damon Albarn- 4AM at Tounis
The Coup- Funk

Posted by Jake at 04:28 PM | Comments (0)

If I Can't Dance, I Don't Want to Be Part of Your Revolution

On today's Lying Media Bastards radio show on

LMB Dance Party!

Yes folks, I'll be breaking out the dancin-est tunes of political and non-political nature from the Jake repetoire. Raise your fist, shake your ass, a good time will be had by all.

LMB Dance Party
Monday, June 16
2-4pm PST

Posted by Jake at 09:04 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

June 13, 2003

Bunch o' News

A Tested Theocracy- for two days this week, Iranians took to the streets to protest their oppressive government. Sounds very good. However, in the wake of U.S. claims that they were going to "de-stabilize the Iranian government," one has to wonder if this is a spontaneous, native uprising, or a sneaky foreign one.

Looting of Iraq's archeological sites continues: National Geographic- apparently the theft of Iraq's ancient treasures is not a past tense occurence.

War may have killed 10,000 civilians, researchers say- the researchers of (which seems to be made up of more prestigious individuals than I would have guessed) have evidenec that between 5000 and 7000 Iraqi civilians were killed during the Iraq war, but they suspect that the final tally will be closer to 10,000. Of course, these numbers will never truly be known, only guessed at.

Was Press Asleep on Pre-War WMD Issue?- Editor & Publisher magazine asks that question of five prominent newspapers, who respond with a slightly defensive "we did the best we could! Kinda..."

US threatens to boycott Belgium over war crimes law- in a way, this story is nothing new. For years now, the U.S. has refused to allow itself to be subject to any external war crimes courts. Belgium, which has a slightly odd "we'll try anyone from anywhere on war crimes" law on the books, is now facing the hostility of the U.S. (well, of Donald Rumsfeld, who some commentators point out, is acting as though he were the president).

Anti-US Opposition In Iraq And The So Called Roadmap: an interview with Robert Fisk- good stuff from the famed British reporter in the Middle East.

Posted by Jake at 12:35 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

June 12, 2003


This Saturday, June 14, Kill Radio will be having a benefit show at Zip Fusion Sushi in downtown Los Angeles. Kill Radio DJs will be spinning tunes from around 9pm to 2am. $7 cover, you get a free drink, and money goes towards helping your favorite internet radio station stay afloat.

But most importantly, if this first night goes well, we can make it a regular event. Kill Radio will have a regular venue to display our talents, promote our causes, and rake in dough. I'm sitting this first show out, but I'll certainly take a turn spinning the political rock, rap and dance if we can make Kill Radio Nite a regular gig.

So. If you live in L.A., come to the show on Saturday. Directions here.

Thanks much.

Posted by Jake at 10:28 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Take Two of These and Call the Suicide Hotline in the Morning

Is this common knowledge?

The "antidepressant" drug Paxil has been found to make depressed children more suicidal.

Normally I like being more careful and tentative about citing studies, but the results are the conclusions drawn from examining nine different studies about Paxil in England (so, I guess it's possible that Paxil only makes British children more suicidal).

Moral of the story: parents, don't give your kids Paxil.

But you've got to love this bit:

"Patients who stop taking Paxil suddenly often experience dizziness, abnormal dreams, headaches and nervousness. In Britain, these are called 'withdrawal symptoms' and in the United States they are called 'discontinuation symptoms.'"

That's some brilliantly twisted PR.

Posted by Jake at 01:38 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

June 11, 2003

New Math

Tom Tomorrow is all over this story.

Basically, a new "fact" is floating around the internet that despite all the tragic original reports of mass looting of Baghdad's museums, that "only 33" pieces were taken.

Unfortunately, that "fact" seems to be a misreading from a Washington Post article on the subject. The WP piece says that 33 pieces were missing from the main collection.

Another 3000 are missing from the rest of the collection. Which means that "only 3033 pieces" were stolen, not 33.

And that was just from the National Museum. Tomorrow also cites a quote from an International Herald Tribune article in which a UN official says, "nobody has talked about the losses at the Museum of Fine Art, which is a very important one. The National Library is a real disaster. It's gone." Again, this would inflate the numbers far above 33.

As expected, conservatives and other pro-war types are using their 33 misreading to attack the credibility of the "liberal media" (although the WP article implies that the media did get the story way wrong on the first try) and us alarmist anti-war types. "Yuk yuk, those crazy smelly hippies got it wrong again! Only 33 pieces were stolen from the museums, not thousands!! Guess we can't trust anything they say and the war was completely justified!!"

As a truth-enthusiast and a manipulation-hatah, this sort of thing really pisses me off.

Posted by Jake at 10:17 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

Ah, Satire

I'd just link to this article, but Eat the State! is always a little slow to post their articles to their website. And I'm hungry now!

A Vast Majority of Americans Agree by Troy Skeels

Recent polls indicate that only 32% of Americans favor attacking Iran to overthrow its dictatorial regime and destroy its weapons of mass destruction. Most of those opposed responded with "I thought we just did that." When it is explained that Iran is a different country than Iraq, the numbers rise to a more patriotic 83%.

When it is further explained that Iran possesses no statues of Saddam Hussein to be toppled over and over again on cable news programs, the numbers in favor of an invasion drop to 63%.

Meanwhile, 53% of Americans say they are in favor of an invasion to overthrow the authoritarian regime currently ruling Baghdad which is widely known to possess weapons of mass destruction. Fifty-nine percent say they are in favor of intervening to halt the brutal occupation of Basra by the British Monarchy, while 63% say that it is important that the US continue to press for democratic reforms in the Ottoman Empire.

According to other polls, 74% of Americans favor invading France, and 39% would support an invasion of South Korea, slightly more than the 35% that say they are in favor of an invasion of North Korea and nearly equal to the 36% who say they are in favor of toppling the regime in West Korea. Another 32% are strongly in favor of an invasion of Canada, while fully 48% responded with, "Where's Canada?" and 36% saying they thought Canada was a state. 52% of the latter say they would support an invasion anyway.

Apparently almost no Americans would support an invasion of Burkina Faso, with 93% responding "same to you buddy" and slamming down the phone.

Meanwhile, nearly seven in ten, or 68%, said they were "somewhat in favor," "More or less in favor," or "strongly in favor," of invading China as long as it did not negatively impact the selection of merchandise available at Wal-Mart.

At the same time, 99% of respondents said they agreed with the statement that "America is one of the nations of the world most respectful of human rights and self determination for all peoples." The Homeland Security Department has taken down the names of the other 1% and has begun proceedings to deport them to Canada.

While 66% of Americans continue to support "democracy of some kind" in the USA, 47% of respondents agreed that "black is white," 53% said they supported the statement "war is peace," and 67% responded that in the post-9-11 world, they were "comfortable" or "somewhat comfortable" with the idea that "freedom is slavery."

Support for the job performance of George Bush remains high, at 73%, while 63% of the public say they would support a trained monkey if it were named "Commander in Chief."

In a related story, the Bush White House has announced steps to counteract what it describes as "800 years of liberal bias," in America's history classes and has ordered the revision of textbooks to reflect that the reason Europeans invaded and colonized North America in the first place was to prevent Native Americans from developing weapons of mass destruction.

In a speech announcing this new program, President Bush declared that, "If our forefathers hadn't stepped in and stopped the weapons programs being conducted in secret by Native Americans, who were known to possess smallpox infected blankets among other things, in clear violation of numerous treaties and solemn promises, we might very well be speaking Ojibojiway, Kicklitilcattat or some other impossible to pronounce language today."

When queried by a reporter (who was immediately fired by his employer and then hustled out and shot) why, after several hundred years, US forces had not found any of these claimed Native American weapons of mass destruction, Presidential Spokesman (Ret.) Ari Fleishcher responded with, "The United States is a large country, larger than California and Iraq combined and the Pre-Columbian regime had well over 12,000 years to hide those weapons. These things take time, but the Administration is confident they will eventually be found. And I shouldn't have to remind anyone that, as dozens of John Wayne movies have clearly shown, the Native American regime expressed its enmity and hatred over and over again for traditional American values and our way of life."

Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld has suggested that the weapons were destroyed shortly after the sails of Columbus's ships were spotted on the horizon. He also pointed to the thousands of unmarked graves that are still being uncovered by archaeologists as proof of the brutality of the Pre-Columbian regime.

According to polls, 87% of Americans are satisfied with the explanations of the Administration on the matter, while slightly more, 91% would prefer to have it explained by a trained monkey.

Posted by Jake at 08:34 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

June 10, 2003

"The first rule of journalism is that governments lie. All governments lie."
-I.F. Stone

Posted by Jake at 05:55 PM | Comments (0)

Average Everyday Scum

Canada's cheaper drugs anger U.S. drug giants

Cutting to the chase, this article is about how the U.S. pharmaceutical industry is trying to lobby the Canadian health care system into oblivion. As I understand it, the Canadian government subsidizes the purchase of medicine for Canadian citizens, lowering the price that an individual has to pay. Canadian businesses seem to be using this to their advantage, selling low priced drugs over the internet to Americans. And the U.S. pharmaceutical industry is pissed because that means that they're not making as much money as they could.

So, to solve this "problem" of lower profits, the U.S. drug industry is trying to eliminate the price controls that make drugs more affordable for Canadians. Bastards.

Posted by Jake at 12:17 AM | Comments (6) | TrackBack

June 09, 2003


The (International) Noise Conspiracy- I Wanna Know About You
Outkast- Bombs Over Baghdad
Nortec Collective- Polaris
Nirvana- Verse Chorus Verse
Sisters of Mercy- Adrenochrome
Mindless Self Indulgence- Golden I
Anthrax- Got the Time
Bill Hicks- Go Back to Bed America
Tom Waits- Jockey Full of Bourbon
Gza- Auto Bio
The Black Keys- Midnight
Mazzy Star- Fade Into You
Louis Prima- I've Got the World on a String
Nine Inch Nails- A Warm Safe Place
Jurassic 5- Music(?)
The Coup- Pimps
Anti-Flag- This Machine Kills Fascists (live)
Lush- Olympia
Sex Pistols- Pretty Vacant
Atari Teenage Riot- Revolution Action
Jefferson Airplane- White Rabbit
Against Me- Pints of Guinness Make You Strong

Posted by Jake at 04:26 PM | Comments (0)

June 07, 2003

Media No Longer Liberal... Apparently

I'm going to steal this graphic from Busy Busy Busy.

It's a screengrab from conservative Fox News pundit show The O'Reilly Factor:

If you have trouble reading the text there, it says "The radical left is furious that liberals no longer set the agenda in the national media."

So O'Reilly is claiming that the media used to be liberal, but now it isn't. Good to know.

So next time you're in an argument with a conservative nut, and the "liberal media" comes up, you can point out that one of America's most influential conservatives says that the media is no longer liberal. That's a win-win-win situation: a) the conservative will have to agree with their pal O'Reilly and concede that the media isn't liberal, b) they'll refuse to believe that the media isn't liberal and lose their love of Bill O'Reilly, or c) their head will explode.

Posted by Jake at 09:09 AM | Comments (11) | TrackBack

The New Campaign

Here's an interesting development:

Ex-Official: Evidence Distorted for War

I believe this is the first intelligence agent (well, ex-) to publicly come forward about the White House manipulating evidence to mislead the public into the Iraq war. There have been many anonymous "officials" leaking these sorts of stories to the press lately, but this fellow is on the record. And he had access to all the U.S. intelligence reports until he quit the job in September of 2002. And since the Bush administration really ramped up its anti-Iraq propaganda in August of 2002, he was in a good position to see some of this.

Why are all these intelligence officials coming out to point fingers at the White House these days?

Politics, of course.

The Bush administration is starting to feel some heat for the lack of evidence of WMD in Iraq. And if they can't find any such evidence, they'll appear as either a bunch of liars who tricked the nation into war, or as a bunch of incompetents who invaded an innocent country.

The best strategy for Bush to dodge all this is to shift the blame. They'll claim that they made these decisions based upon the intelliegence gathered by the CIA and DIA and FBI. If it turns out that there are no weapons of mass destruction, then the error will have been the fault of these agencies that provided the intelligence, not poor decisions made by the executive branch. Shifting this blame would also be a good way for Bush to introduce a "Fire All the Head Guys in Intelligence Who Didn't Fabricate Anti-Iraq Reports for Me and Replace Them with More Obedient Guys, or with Some of My Corporate Pals Act of 2003."

The intelligence community is fighting back (or are they fighting pre-emptively?). by telling the tales of distortion and pressure that kept the beat for the drumbeat of war. They don't want to be saddled with the blame, especially if that blame is misplaced.

I'm not sure where all this will lead, mainly because the American public doesn't seem overly concerned about whether or not they were lied to about the necessity for war, as long as the Iraqi people are "free," and don't make too much of a fuss (which sure as hell ain't guaranteed). But if this story above gets printed in a few major media outlets, I feel assured in saying that this man is going to be smeared like nobody's business. Think Scott Ritter, or to a lesser degree, Hans Blix. I'm betting that they'll first say that he didn't have access to the deep intelligence that the White House did, then imply that he was a sloppy and unintelligent agent, and then maybe start questioning why he "retired," and hint at incompetence or some sort of scandal.

Posted by Jake at 12:57 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

June 06, 2003

Our Brave President

In an event largely unnoticed by the media, President Bush visited Iraq today.

Well, if you consider flying over a country from 31,000 feet for an hour while your staff points out and identifies national landmarks that look like little blobs to be "a visit." And most people probably don't.

According to a White House staffer, the point of the flyover was to "show that Iraq is now free." Because you can't fly over non-free countries. Or because free countries look different from non-free countries when you're really high up. Or something.

Posted by Jake at 03:32 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

June 04, 2003

Diversity in Media

From a discussion on this weekend's Meet the Press, with journalists David Broder, Albert Hunt, Robert Novak and William Safire (in advance, emphasis mine):

MR. RUSSERT: But, Bob, for the facts—this is important. There are indications that some of the soldiers in Iraq, because of their low income, will not be getting beneficiaries of this tax cut. Would that be acceptable to you?
MR. NOVAK: To me, it’s quite obvious that people who pay the taxes should get the tax cuts. People, like you, for example, who get so much income should get the tax cuts.
MR. SAFIRE: And you and you.
MR. NOVAK: All of us here, let’s be honest

Oh, it does make me chuckle.

Thanks to the The Daily Howler

Posted by Jake at 03:44 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Shock! Surprise! Yawn!

Wolfowitz: Iraq war was about oil

Asked why a nuclear power such as North Korea was being treated differently from Iraq, where hardly any weapons of mass destruction had been found, the deputy defence minister said: "Let's look at it simply. The most important difference between North Korea and Iraq is that economically, we just had no choice in Iraq. The country swims on a sea of oil."

I can't even type the obligatory sarcastic reply here. "What, it was about oil blah blah blah".

But what's Wolfowitz's game here? Is he trying to get fired?


This Modern World points out that the above is possibly taken out of context. According to a transcript of the press conference posted by the Defense Department:

Look, the primarily difference -- to put it a little too simply -- between North Korea and Iraq is that we had virtually no economic options with Iraq because the country floats on a sea of oil. In the case of North Korea, the country is teetering on the edge of economic collapse and that I believe is a major point of leverage whereas the military picture with North Korea is very different from that with Iraq. The problems in both cases have some similarities but the solutions have got to be tailored to the circumstances which are very different.


Posted by Jake at 03:20 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack


Surgeon General Favors Tobacco Ban

Posted by Jake at 01:56 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

Liquid Irony

June 2003: Members of the world's wealthiest industrialized nations, AKA the G8, meet in Evian, France to discuss matters of great importance.

Among the topics discussed: lack of access to clean water among the world's poorest.

Gallons of bottled water consumed by G8 delegates during four day summit: 7800

Posted by Jake at 01:06 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Bit o' News

Unreconstructed- go read this one. Long but fairly comprehensive look at the current state of Afghanistan- politically, economically, socially, etc. The main focus of the article is on the incredible amount of work and money that is needed to rebuild Afghanistan, and the utter lack of work and money that has been given by the wealthy Western nations who promised to give it.

Iraqis Say They Will Defy U.S. On Council Plan- wow. The U.S. occupation leaders called for a major conference of Iraqi political leaders to start making decisions on a quasi-democratic interim government. Then, the U.S. cancelled the conference, claiming that the country wasn't ready for that yet, that the U.S. would just appoint leaders. Now, Iraqis are saying that they are going to have the conference anyway. Don't know where that's going to lead...

Study: Detainees abused after 9/11- this story got a bit of play in the mainstream news. In the wake of 9-11, U.S. law enforcement went nuts, imprisoning hundreds of "Middle Eastern" and Muslim men without the usual due process of arrest. In effect, these men were abducted and held prisoner for weeks, without anyone knowing where they had gone. It seemed illegal and immoral right on the face of it. But now a report from the Justice Department says that a number of these detainees suffered "physical and verbal abuse" from their captors. Not surprising, really.

TV News That Looks Local, Even if It's Not- this is downright creepy. It's about the Sinclair Broadcast Group, a company that owns 62 American television stations. For newscasts at all SBG-owned stations, the show is perhaps half done by the local station's news team. The other half is produced at SBG headquarters, and is played on all of the local stations, passing off a national newscast as a local one. Even stranger, part of the national broadcast is fiery right-wing invective by Mark Hyman. Hyman is not a journalist or political analyst, but the Vice President of Corporate Communications for SBG. But scariest is when the local content is driven out of the local news. How the hell are you going to find out what your local politicians and business are doing if no one will cover those stories?

Posted by Jake at 09:13 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

June 02, 2003


Motorhead- Play the Game
Asian Dub Foundation- Naxtalite
The Vandals- Dance of the Sugarplum Fairies
Locust- Master and Servant
The White Stripes- Dead Leaves and the Dirty Ground
The Sundays- Wild Horses
Gza- Auto Bio
Newcleus- Jam On It
Tom Waits- Way Down in the Hole
Prince- Kiss
The Plugz- Hombre Secreto
Lush- Olympia
Christoph Fringeli and Pure Antichrist- SubVersion02
Massive Attack- Risingson
Siouxsie and the Banshees- Kiss Them for Me
Louis Prima- I've Got the World on a String

Posted by Jake at 04:24 PM | Comments (0)

Don't Want to Alarm You, But...

Okay, here is a grim headline from today's Washington Post regarding the U.S. occupation of Iraq:

Leave Iraq, Tribesmen and Sacked Troops Tell U.S.

Important news indeed. But in my mind, not quite so important as the first sentence:

"Thousands of sacked Iraqi soldiers threatened Monday to launch suicide attacks against U.S. troops..."

Shouldn't that have been the headline, something like "Thousands of Iraqis Threaten Suicide Attacks on U.S. Troops"?

Actually, I guess it's hard to tell from the way the article is written if that statement is completely true. What we get is the claim that "more than 3,000 sacked soldiers marched on the U.S-led administration's headquarters vowing violence unless they were paid wages and compensation" and then a quote from one of these ex-soldiers vowing that they will all become suicide bombers. Do his 3000 comrades share his sentiment? This article won't tell you.

Okay, we'll re-write that headline again to incorporate the ambiguity. "Thousands of Iraqi Soldiers Threaten Violence Against U.S. Unless Receive Back Wages". Still a grim situation.

Is there any good news coming out of Iraq these days?

Posted by Jake at 09:00 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Bastards Get Fatter

As predicted, the FCC has voted 3-2 in favor of new rules which allow large media conglomerates to swallow up smaller media conglomerates. Their essential argument was "hey, there's so many TV stations, so many cable channels, and so many internet sites, that there's no reason for these limits on how much media a single entity can own." Of course, they didn't mention that all of the most popular TV stations, cable channels and internet sites are owned by the same few enormous corporations.

The main changes in ownership rules:

- a company can now own TV stations that reach 45% of the nation, instead of the previous 35%

- in large cities (with nine or more TV stations), a company is allowed to own TV stations, radio stations and newspapers (previously there had been rules against owning more than one of these mediums in the same city). In medium-sized cities, they can own some combination of TV, radio, and newspapers, but not as many of each. And in small towns, no cross-ownership is permitted.

- the FCC is creating a "diversity index" to determine how much potential diversity of opinion (as measured by number of individual owners of local media outlets) there is in a given location. However they have made no committment to do a damn thing with these statistics once they have calculated them.

You can read the text of the FCC decision in pdf format here, chairman Powell's statement here and dissenting opinion by Commissioner Copps here.

Will we see another massive consolidation of ownership like the FCC's deregulatory Telecom Act of 1996? Will we see a more cautious approach to media mergers in the wake of the mixed success of AOL-Time Warner? Something else?

Posted by Jake at 08:47 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Another Quickie

U.S. prison population largest in world

Well, by percentage of total population, anyway. As of April, the United States had 2,019,234 people in prison. Which means that proportionally, we have more people in jail than any dictatorship or police state on the globe. I'm going to go out on a limb here and say that that's a bad thing.

Why do we have so many people in jail? The prime culprit, of course, is America's ridiculous drug policies, followed closely by America's mandatory minimum sentencing policies. I'd recommend the book The Perpetual Prisoner Machine by Joel Dyer for more info on this subject (he also throws in "private, for-profit prisons" as another factor). But it should just be good old common sense that turning pot-smoking teens into hardened ex-cons isn't the best use of our tax dollars.

Posted by Jake at 01:59 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Lying Media Bastards is both a radio show and website. The show airs Mondays 2-4pm PST on, 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.

All brought to you by Jake Sexton, The Most Beloved Man in America ®.


Media News

June 25, 2003

Let the File-Sharer Beware

Just heard this news:

Music Industry to Sue File-Sharers

Music companies are poised to sue thousands of people who share songs on the Internet, escalating their attack on piracy with a strategy that many in the music industry have long hoped to avoid.

The Recording Industry Assn. of America today announced plans to spend the next month identifying targets among the estimated 80 million people using file-sharing networks, focusing on those offering a "significant" amount of songs for others to copy. Then, in August, the RIAA plans to file its first lawsuits on behalf of record companies, RIAA President Cary Sherman said...

Sherman said the RIAA will begin collecting the Internet addresses Thursday of those who offer copyrighted songs for others to copy though file-sharing networks. There's no minimum number of files that will trigger a lawsuit, he said, adding that "offering even one file without permission is one too many."

So there's your warning, folks. If you download mp3s off the internet, you should probably move most of your files to a folder that you do not allow other folks to download from. Granted, it looks like the RIAA will only go after you if you have a "significant" amount of songs that other people want, which probably means if you've got lots of top 40 artists, you should be cautious. But theoretically, they can go after anyone.

Just a heads up.

Posted by Jake at 01:30 PM | Comments (4) | TrackBack (0)
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"The first rule of journalism is that governments lie. All governments lie."
-I.F. Stone

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