Many many moons ago, when I was just a young dad with lots of responsibilities and not very many dollars, I found myself sitting at an outdoor lunch table with a bunch of my colleagues from work who were single and evidently without the kind of financial concerns that I had. They were talking about sunglasses. Each was wearing a pair of pricey shades that cost about as much as I was spending per month on food and diapers. The whole conversation was absurd to me. Eventually somebody asked me what I kind of sunglasses I favored, to which I replied,
I dunno. Whenever I need something like that I just wait until they put it in a McDonald’s Happy Meal(tm).
Similarly, whenever I need an opinion on an issue that has to do with telecommunications policy, privacy, the First Amendment, cowardice and chickenshitosity in the Congress, or fear mongering and criminality in the Bush/Cheney administration, I generally just wait for Harold Feld to put an article up on Wetmachine/Tales of the Sausage Factory to tell me what I’m thinking. I know how I feel about an issue, more or less, but a good Feldian rant always brings it into focus — and often gets me to call or write my congresscritters.
Lately I’ve been really steamed about all this talk of passing a bill that will grant immunity to the telecommunications companies for illegally spying on their customers, Nixon-style, since way before the magical “all laws cease here” date NineEleven (peace be upon it). From what I can tell, the chickenshit Congress is making noises about going along with Lord Voldemort’s, I mean Bush’s request to make time-travelling the law of the land, at least when it comes to giant corporations spying on citizens on behalf of who-knows-who.
So, I’ve been kinda waiting for a duly appropriate, incendiary, and legally impeccable disquisition from Harold on this. The fact that he has not yet weighed in leads me to think that either yes, what I’m saying is as obvious as “water is wet” and this does not merit a TotSF article, or, perhaps, that I’m missing something.
It is worth mentioning that the week after that aforementioned conversation about sunglasses, I stopped at a McDonald’s and purchased a Happy Meal. There was a nice pair of sunglasses inside, which, moreover, almost fit.
Or not, who knows, I don’t care. It’s an enlisted man’s pun, you wouldn’t understand. I just want to see if I can get the Senate of the United States of America to debate Wetmachine and maybe pass a resolution denouncing us. I’m sure that would be good for traffic, which is what it’s all about, ain’t it? Net capitalism, dude. It’s what’s for dinner.
But I don’t know why I bother, because Comcast or AT&T, the new Cellular, will edit this en route to your eyballs, and you’ll never even know I wrote it. It will be like the memory hole, only more high tech. And the bits will seal up around the absense of my message just like the metal man in Terminator Two, Judgement Day. (Remember, in Soviet Russia, Internet censors YOU!)
Hey, don’t taze me, bro. I’m just say’n what it is.
You may now go back to reading the triumphal return post, below, from our long-lost Web 3.0 boy, Howard Stearns.
Bush is a liar and a coward and a presumptive monarch; Cheney is a traitor who gives aid and comfort to the enemies of the United States of America. And Libby is their soldier, a made man, a capo de regime with a sharp knife.
I have nothing original to say on this subject, but do want to go on the record.
Another day with traitors at the helm of the ship of state and too many of my compatriots cool with that. Oh well. Maybe the congress will step up and do what they’re there for; act as if they’re worthy of the countless “last full measures of devotion” that preserved the institution they now inhabit.
By the grace of God I don’t get TV in my house, and, modulo the occasional exception of a cable intermezzo of a few months’ duration here and there, haven’t for nearly twenty years. But I’m not a Puritan, and so, when I’m on a business trip as I am now, I sometimes put on the tube, and if there’s no baseball to be found I check out what’s up with hoi polloi. So it was that tonight I saw for the first time, on TV, the legendary salonista Sally Ann Quinn.
She was pretty hot, I’ll admit; younger and better looking than I had imagined. After all, she was already a doyenne at the time of Bill Clinton’s first inaugural– a priestess in the cult of High Broderism. It was she who famously pronounced Slick Willy too plebeian, too common, to inhabit the place which we rubes across the land had thought belonged to us, viz, the White House, until Sally Ann Quinn set us straight. So you can forgive my imagining her an old hag.
As an habitual, nay, addicted reader of political blogs I had of course read about her shot across “Fourthbranch” Dick Cheney’s bow in today’s WAPO, in which she said that “some Republicans” were looking for an excuse, presumably medical, to ditch Cheney and replace him with the sweet-smelling dreamboat Fred Thompson. So when I got back to the hotel room tonight after a hard day in the Silicon Valley salt mines and began my futile search for non-Giants baseball and saw her name under the crylon “The Plot against Cheney,” I had to stop and look, as at the proverbial car wreck– this one with a decapitation.
If you’re not familiar with Digby, by all means, do yourself and the cause of democracy a favor and get familiar.
Those of you who are among Digby’s regular readers know that until recently very few people knew whether Digby was a man or a woman, and still today, even after Digby’s speech, only her close friends know her name or what she “does for a living.” All I know about her are (as of a few days ago), (a) what she looks and sounds like, and (b) that she is and for some while has been the best writer writing about current events in the USA. She is passionate, informed, funny, angry, brilliant, and a magnificent prose stylist.
This is the first, but it will certainly not be the last of time that John of Wetmachine joins the exponentially growing phenomenon of bloggers putting up posts entitled “What Digby said.” (Meaning, of course, “I hereby emphatically endorse what Digby said.”) Digby, the Tom Paine of our era.
By way of Smirking Chimp I come across this fascinating (and utterly depressing) account of how Karl Rove “reached out” to (Saint) Jack Welch, A.K.A “the buzz saw”, Chairman of General Electric, the parent company of NBC, and how together they put in place the right wing noise machine that masquerades as our nation’s electronic news media.
Just a note to celebrate the conviction of Shooter Cheney’s loyal underling Lewis Libby, a lying weasle if ever there was one (not to mention a purveyor of kiddie porn –see is “novel”). As expected, the corporate media are working overtime to spread the meme that some kind of injustice was done to poor ol’ Scooter. Well, that’s a syndrome we know well here at Wetmachine. Nobody expected Moloch to whither away after one little conviction, nor Bush neither. Nevertheless we can take joy that one soldier of the Bush crime family has been at least temporarily sidelined.
For a great analysis of the right wing/Bushista/corporate infotainment spin, see this helpful post at premiere site Firedoglake. And if you have a few pennies to throw in the direction of that stellar group of citizen journalists, by all means do so. They’re fighting a brave battle on behalf of all of us.
P.S. This FDL post about the role played by NPR’s “All Things Considered” in shilling for the administration is also well worth your while.
So… I just can’t help but congratulate America today.
The U.S. has done and is doing hell of a job to help Ukraine defend itself in Russia’s brutal colonial war.
Without American assistance, I’m afraid, we’d now be fighting Russia somewhere in west Ukraine, bleeding out.