Intravenous Caffeine

Totally Unfair and Completely Unbalanced

To the shores of Tripoli (if that’s all right with you)

Muammar and his all-blonde bodyguard.

Muammar plans a courageous last stand fighting his own citizens.

Well, I’ve been fighting the con crud all week and I have a doctor’s appointment in an hour and a half so I’m going to rush this in. Our favorite insane dictator, Muammar Gaddafi, certainly has his hands full this week. Seems his entire citizenry has said, enough is enough, and is not just demonstrating, but fighting for his ouster, with “rebel” forces fighting loyalist troops. Gaddafi ordered the troops to fire on protestors, bringing him not only the condemnation of the UN, but al-Qaeda and, finally, the US government. Pretty soon he’ll be down to Muammar and his all-blonde bodyguard. Now, I can appreciate a nuanced approach, unlike John McCain who seems to want to replay the Marine hymn and send them back “to the shores of Tripoli.” But there’s a difference between nuance and sitting on the sidelines waiting to see what everyone else is going to do. However, now that the world has given its permission, we are at last suggesting that Muammar step down. Before he’s given the Mussolini treatment by the populace.

Passing on to more important things, the feel-good movie of the year, “The King’s Speech”, won best picture at the Oscars. I’m so surprised. Other surprises included Natalie Portman for Best Actress and Colin Firth for Best Actor. Ho-hum. The most interesting moment in the whole thing (not counting Melissa Leo’s “bleep” and Banksy not showing up) was when “Inside Job” director Charles Ferguson used winning the Best Documentary award for his movie indicting the greedy bastards who caused our economic meltdown to deliver a scathing condemnation of the fact that none of them have gotten indicted by the justice system, but instead are living in the gated communities and off-shore retreats with billions of ill-gotten gains stolen from the citizenry of the United States. I hope you were watching the Oscars, Barry. Hollywood has spoken. Permission has been granted to at least get a few token bastards in jail. After all, we don’t want what is happening in Libya and Egypt and Tunisia to be happening here.

But if it does, you can bet we won’t hear about it. Seems the only backlash that gets any airplay is the Tea Party–you know, the chumps that wanted the rich bastards to get tax breaks as well? Over 100,000 people gathered outside the Wisconsin State House to protest the railroading of the unions by Governor Scott Walker and scant word was seen on the cable TV news programs. Scant mention on Fox, predictably, except for Shep Smith admitting the real issue was union-busting not a deficit, but CNN and MSNBC seemed to think that the Tea Party anniversary and Charlie Sheen’s meltdown were more important than the biggest rally held since the Vietnam war protests. The People Magazine-ification of News in America!

You know, sometimes I wonder if we get what we deserve?

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Will Sanity Be Restored? Not if WE can help it…

A screenshot from Fox News showing the Stewart-Colbert Rally to Restore Sanity/Fear snowed out--in October

And FoxNews viewers from DC swear they saw it--but forgot their names


Well, it’s not a cartoon, but damn, it’s been so long since I posted anything, I just had to post SOMETHING. First of all, my bronchitis is “mostly” gone. I feel better but my strength isn’t up completely back to where it should be. It will be by the end of the week. Thanks to my well-wishers who expressed good wishes. We won’t mention what I wish for those who wished the opposite :D

I DID get to the Jon Stewart/Stephen Colbert Rally to Restore Sanity/Fear on Saturday. Wish I’d done more to publicize it, although the boys certainly did not need MY publicity. The subway (errrr Metro–how gay is that? –Samantha Bee) was incredible. There were lines 20-30 minutes long to buy tickets and then olive oil was spread on the riders to get them all squeezed into the cars. When the doors finally opened at L’Enfant Plaza, it was like projectile vomit as the trains disgorged their charges.

By the time I actually made the rally location–and I admit I was moving slowly due to my energy levels–you literally could not get two blocks from the mall before foot traffic slowed to a shuffle-along. The DC police had wisely shut down several streets. My own uninformed crowd guesstimates said there was at least 150k people there and possibly as high as 300k. I think the TOTAL number of people who came to the Rally was close to the latter, but because of the difficulty getting within site and sound of the stage–and there were video feeds with huge sound systems to relay the proceedings to the further away, BUT THERE WERE THAT MANY PEOPLE THERE–that the back of the crowd was very fluid with people arriving, staying for a while, and then leaving to get a better view ON THE INTERNET. In fact, I couldn’t stay to the end because I couldn’t find a good place to both see and hear what was going on. The CBSNews paid for crowd count said 215,000. That’s a reasonable number for the amount of people who were there at any single moment in time.

It was odd to see how the news media handled it. Although pre-rally shows began at 10 am, and some people had been there since the night before, I could not find any crowd estimates on the cable news stations. It was as if nothing was going to happen. Contrast that with the ballyhoo that characterized Glenn Beck’s revival meetin’. By Sunday, the coverage rapidly evaporated after 6 am–yesterday’s news. DId they get wind of what the main point of the Rally was? That the media, fanning the flames of partisanship, is one of the major contributors to the chasm that is seen between political viewpoints today? As people, we work together everyday despite differences–Jon Stewart likened it to merging into the lanes of a tunnel–a very apt simile for someone in the NY/NJ area. Yet in politics, there is this perception of near civil war, at least the way the news media provides soapboxes to the MOST extreme elements.

Some of my progressive friends have opined that Jon and Stephen STILL missed the point–after all, the most extreme elements are all ON THE RIGHT. That may be so. But the point of the rally wasn’t to point fingers at THEM. It was to point fingers at the people on the sidelines who are busily asking both sides if they need more gasoline to put out the fire. They are no longer informing us. They’re like the reporter in Ace in the Hole/The Big Carnival who prevented the rescue of the man trapped in a cave to prolong the news story. In the movie, the trapped guy died. But now, we’re the people in the cave. Will we have a release like the Chileans? Or do we go down in the interests of real journalism?

Thanks Jon and Stephen. It was a good rally.

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