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Posted by on Dec 23, 2005 in At TMV | 0 comments

Around The ‘Sphere

Our occasional linkfest from all over Blogtopia (thanks SKIPPY for the word!). Links represent VARYING viewpoints that don’t necessarily represent the opinion of The Moderate Voice.

We Often Say Senator Bill Frist Has His Finger Up To Test The Political Wind but now he has been bested by a Guinness Book Of Records rival: Senator Rick Santorum. Have you ever seen anything quite as brazen as this?

“So Why Did You Kill Her?” “The bitch made me do it…”

Is State Tuition Going To Illegal Aliens
? Some college students are suing…and here’s one opinion about the issue here.

Censorship Of Blogs In China?
WordPress China is shutting some blogs.

David Corn And Pajamas Media: A (withering) assessment from the inimitable James Wolcott.

It Sounds Like He’s Off And Running For President:
Mass. Gov. Mitt Romney gets into position to do it to give it to stick it to visit the nation.

You See More And More Kids In School Uniforms: It’s happening in Arizona in a big way. Read this and find out more as well as positive feedback on uniforms from a teacher.

TMV Thinks About Quitting Blogging Each Day but then you see something like this that puts it all into perspective.

But Those Of Us Who Do Blogs Get Too Political And Lose Sight Of OTHER THINGS That Are Also More Interesting like this hit TV show. (It’s a comedy but then so are politicians making promises…)

Some Critics Blast Wal-Mart but READ THIS and see if your blood doesn’t boil about this truly contemptible stunt by a union. So now we make kids cry at Christmas??!!

Diebold Remains Enmeshed In Controversy over its voting machines and is reportedly pulling out of North Carolina.

Who Speaks For Mainstream America? A FASCINATING POST in the always provocative The New Editor:

Watching MSNBC’s Hardball, I just did a double-take when guest host Andrea Mitchell asked New York Times columnist Maureen Dowd where she thought “the American people were” with regard to the Bush Administration and the NSA domestic surveillance story.

Forgive me for asking, but what the hell does Maureen Dowd, or for that matter, other New York Times columnists like Paul Krugman, Bob Herbert, or Frank Rich, know about what the American mainstream is thinking?

Read it in full. And he’s right: it’s always a scream when a TV interviewer asks a top journalistic celebrity who moves in elite circles about what the average person says or thinks. TMV has to add this:

You have to also ask: what the hell does Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity, and many other talk show hosts on the right AND left know about America as well? Certainly Limbaugh, as he flies in his jet to a city for lunch and complains about people on government assistance, is a bit…ahem…out of touch with the mainstream (but not with the top levels of the GOP). We’d bet the two talk show hosts most in tune with Eddy Everyman or Edna Everywoman would be…believe it or not…Michael Savage on the far right and Ed Schultz on the center-left. Both aren’t totally fixated simply on One Party’s Truth…or even politics. (Savage loves to talk about meatballs, places he ate dinner, etc; Schultz clearly still loves sports, the outdoors and hunting).

Did You Know That U.S. Universities Once Felt They Had To Deal With A Jewish Problem?
More about that and how they dealt with it can be found here.

Defending Domestic Spying: An Appeals Court judge defends domestic spying and suggests some ways to fine-tune it.

Tears Because They Tore Him A New One: We did many posts on the attempt to shove ANWR drilling into a crucial defense spending bill…and how in the end it was defeated by a coalition of GOPers and Democrats. The guy who came up with the eyebrow-raising strategy of making politicos choose between voting for the troops or voting to keep ANWR pristine shed some tears when his Machiavellian-manuever bit the dust. See the video here.

BUT LET’S NOT FORGET THIS: No matter WHAT religion you are, there is a spirit of Christmas…as Tales of a Wandering Mind reminds us.







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Posted by on Dec 14, 2005 in At TMV |

Around The ‘Sphere

Our occasional linkfest from weblogs of all kinds and opinions. Opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect the views of TMV.

George Clooney Is Tired Of “Liberal” Being A Dirty Word and here’s a conservative view on that.

More On The Execution Of Stanley Tookie Williams at Politopics.

And Even More in this MUST READ that mixes in some dramatic personal anecdotes to reach a conclusion (few tears shed).

An Anti War Protest At…Gitmo? Apparently, yes…

Everyday It Seems There’s A New Controversy Involving The Press…in fact, it’s almost starting to rival the controversies peppering the Bush administration. And, on Imus, Tom Oliphant asks what is going on? VIDEO HERE.

Still Not Convinced? Then read Jeff Jarvis’s take on the controversy raging over Washington Post columnist Dan Froomkin. Next, be sure to read in full Jay Rosen’s post that has original interviews with some of the key players involved. Perhaps the key question that emerges when you read all this is: why is all of this happening NOW? We now have controversies over the following newspapers and/or their staffs: the New York Times, Time Magazine, the Washington Post, the Los Angeles Times (but you can always rely on The Moderate Voice to be controversy-free! WAIT…that doesn’t sound right…)

And Isn’t There A Fundamental Underlying Controversy And Issue?
This writer points to pervasive media bias.

A Blog Carnival Of German-American Relations can be found here. QUITE meaty and interesting…

The Illegal Immigration Debate was the focus of a recent 60 Minutes segment. Diggers Realm, a blog that often writes about immigration (it urges a harder line), has this reaction to the mentioning of people who die in the desert while trying to sneak in:

Look, I may sound heartless or like an asshole, but I really have no pity. They know the risks. They know it’s illegal. If you die in the desert, it’s your own fault. We as Americans have to do what it takes to not only deter, but to stop illegal aliens from getting into the desert in the first place. Put up a huge fence and monitor it. Then you won’t have some families losing their boys. Until we do stop them though I say “Let them die in the desert” and I mean it.

Read the whole post, which brings into focus how emotional this issue is. It’s almost like the capital punishment issue with sharply drawn sides (TMV covered immigration as part of his job as a staff reporter on The San Diego Union in the 80s).

Guess Who’s Going To Have A Radio Show?
Bob Dylan (but will you be able to understand what he says?)

Pondering The Iranian Threat: Centerfeud explores the issue.

PSST! Hey, Atheists:
You’re outnumbered.

You Can Say Anything About Anyone On A Blog and there aren’t consequences, right? Maybe not..

Some Thoughts On Polls from a Democratic perspective.

A Scenario For Giuliani For President via Redstate





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Copyright 2005 The Moderate Voice

Posted by on Dec 6, 2005 in At TMV |

Around The ‘Sphere

Our occasional linkfest of posts representing DIVERSE viewpoints. Opinions expressed do not necessarily represent the opinion of TMV.

ABSOLUTELY REPREHENSIBLE:
What kind of a kid would send a get well card like this? What kind of an adult? And if it was a kid and an adult KNEW what kind of an adult would condone or allow it? What does it say about our politics that someone could send out something as obscene as THIS? (It’s probably an adult with the mentality of a 2 year old).

So How Did Bush Do On Homeland Security If You Boil The 911 Commission’s Recent Report Card? Here’s one interpretation from Taylor Marsh who writes:”But the bulk of Bush and the Republican led Congress grading lives in the “God help us” category…”

The Trials And Tribulations Of Wikipedia still don’t dim the admiration of its fans.

The Trials And Tribulations Of Wikipedia (II)
could mean it is on its way out.

Don’t Smile Too Broadly, Democrats because you too could be involved in the “Abramoff Scandal.”

The Judge And Tom DeLay:
What happened, I guess, is all a matter of perspective….

Racial Profiling?
At you-know-where? (TMV by the way shops there all the time…..)

Is The Alito Nomination In Trouble?
People For The American Way thinks so.

Rush Limbaugh Steps In It again. Rush’s problem (aside from the obvious harsh political partisan problem that has made him the biggest thing in broadcasting and a millionaire) is that he makes assertions which prove to be embarrassingly inaccurate. He seemingly aspires to be taken seriously as a commentator but the inaccuracy of his statements (as you can see from the one on the link) dooms him to his exalted status as radio’s most popular partisan ENTERTAINER.

More (Gloomy) Thoughts On Pajamas Media: AmbiaBlog says “This Store Will Fail” — and explains why.

A Blistering Memo To Donald Rumsfeld from The Belgravia Dispatch. A MUST-READ in full but here’s a small taste:

I’ve now come to the point where the continued inability of President Bush (who, after all, is our Commander in Chief) to fire Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld for his repeated near dereliction of duty and (just shy of) criminal negligence have pushed me to a bursting point. It’s not that I regret my criticisms of John Kerry, whom I believe never cared about the outcome of the war in Iraq in any serious, basic way and would have presided over a ‘cut and run’ as very quickly as possible. It’s more that I should have remained on the sidelines, rather than support George W Bush in the pages of this blog. He didn’t deserve my humble efforts here, I have learned the hard way. In the main, this is because of two major factors: 1) his inability to hold Rumsfeld accountable, and 2) his kow-towing to Dick Cheney on the torture issue where the clear way ahead is that of John McCain, and Victor Davis Hanson, and Thomas Kean, and so many other adult, responsible Republicans (who realize, if merely from an utilitarian perspective alone, putting aside the critical moral issues, what a disaster our detainee policy has been on so many levels).

And next time he will tell you what he REALLY thinks!

What Should You Do When You’re Accused Of Being A Racist And You’re Not? How about THIS.

A Secret Memo From KR
or so Bull Moose says…..

Howard Dean Has Sparked Another Controversy With His Latest Comments On Iraq. Reaction from Right Wing News.





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Posted by on Nov 20, 2005 in At TMV |

Around The ‘Sphere

Our occasional linkfest offering you a guidemap to good reading from DIFFERING viewpoints. Links do not necessarily reflect the opinions of TMV.

What FactCheck Says About President George W. Bush
And WMD via The Astute Blogger.

Reaction To Murtha/House Uproar from The Boston Progressive, who was not pleased with what he saw.

The Race For $$$ For The Senate and how both parties are doing is explored by our co-blogger Jonathan Singer here in his new weekend co-blogging role on a major liberal website.

Reaction To Murtha/House Uproar II:
Details on the atomic-charged atmosphere plus a guess who could beat whom up via one of TMV’s favorite sites, Booker Rising.

Will The New Fast-Food Counterperson’s Question Be “Do You Want Your Throat Slashed With That?” A customer and an employee didn’t see eye to eye at Burger King so someone wound up cut ear to ear. Details HERE.

The Key To A Longer Life:
Is it exercise or beer?

Has The Washington Post‘s Bob Woodward Become The New Judy Miller? Some extensive thoughts here.

TMV DOES HAVE ANOTHER LIFE, YOU KNOW and you can read a little about it here.

Homegrown Terroristsin Canada.

Reporters Without Borders: Should it really be Reporters Without Backbones?

George W. Bush Isn’t The Only One With Bad Poll Numbers:
Just look at the Socialist government in Spain.

If Teachers In The United States Think THEY Have It Tough…they should pray they don’t have to teach in Saudi Arabia.

“Gee, Mommy, This Hot Dog At The Zoo Tasted Funny!” “Oh. It was a Zebra dog!” A zoo in Thailand is going to serve “bush meat” (that is not a long lost member of GWB’s family but animals such as zebras, giraffe and crocodile.) Some want to boycott. (BURP!)

Do Exit Strategies Help or hinder wars?

Murtha As Cronkite: The Mighty Middle’s Michael Reynolds has a MUST-READ post here. Here’s a tiny part of it:

I’ve been obsessed with politics since I was 14. Come to think of it, since about the time Cronkite stuck the fork in LBJ. I’ve never seen a White House melt down this suddenly. The closest comparison? Nixon. Amazing and horrifying. Fascinating and scary. It’ll all make a great story, some day. I hope.

TMV has a lot in common with Reynolds. TMV became a political junkie the day JFK was assassinated, when TMV was in junior high. He became obsessed with reading ALL viewpoints and materials. And he agrees: the closest parallel with what’s happening is the deterioration of the Nixon administration. And you get the feeling we’re at the very beginning of it…and some things could get a lot worse.

SAVE THIS RECIPE for Pumpkin Pie so you can make it fresh for Thursday…

Reaction To Murtha/House Uproar III: Is this a tipping point similar to something that happened to another President?





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Posted by on Jun 10, 2005 in At TMV |

Around The ‘Sphere

Links are from sites with varying viewpoints. Opinions expressed do not necessarily express the views of TMV or its co-bloggers.

More On What Is A Moderate: Our co-blogger Jack Grant sparked quite a discussion here and on his blog by exploring that subject. Here are some additional thoughts via The Classless Society (which we bet Jack will discuss at a future date in some detail). PS: Anyone who has read this blog by now has a teeney weenie idea that we have some strong convictions — and throughout political history having a strong conviction never has meant someone was not considered a moderate, not by historians or by the news media at the time. Read history and you’ll find “moderate” Republicans and Democrats who were at the forefront of issues. They weren’t reclassified. Why? Because in those days the focus was more on issues rather than on personalities.

Due to our schedule we’re passing on this debate (for now) and will not demand liberals prove they’re liberals, conservatives prove they’re conservatives because, frankly, that is NOT why we started a blog to ask other bloggers to prove their ideology or party. And if some folks don’t like the way we define ourselves then we just guess they’ll have to not like the way we define ourselves. We WILL take up this general topic at a later date when we have time (and we don’t — all posts here today are being done quickly before we leave a hotel). We’ll simply say: if some don’t consider TMV a moderate then it’s YOUR right to think what you want if it makes you happy. While you’re at it: consider TMV a Brad Pitt look alike, too.

Journalistic Overstating? Paul Geary of The New Editor puts a Reuters story under his microscope and points out how certainties on this story on global warming seemingly change within the same story — depending on how the reporter describes it. (Our journalism profs and editors would have made it consistent).

The JFK Assassination Revisited: In our post on our Watergate memories we noted that most people can remember where they were when JFK was assassinated. This led to us getting an email from this intriguing site on JFK (we read everything on this subject so we immediately checked it out). People are still split over whether to accept the official version or the various theories. This site does a good job of making the case for the non-government theory. What remains interesting about the JFK assassination is that people who believe the Warren Report look down their noses at the conspiracy theory buffs; the conspiracy theory buffs look down their noses at those who believe the Warren Report.

Do You Have A Blog And Want To Directly “Debate” An Issue? If so, read this from The Daily Demarche and you can get involved (and probably get some good extra exposure.

Lawmaker Wants Minimum Wage For Comedians: No joke.

Are Reporters Like Breeds Of Dogs? Lullaby Pit, looking at Watergate and how the press covers government and The Elite in general, thinks so — and makes the case here.

Is The GOP Paying A Heavy Price For Social Conservatives’ Influence? Bull Moose (one of our FAVORITES in style and content — a blog we proudly have in our Center Voices column) thinks so. He has several posts on the subject and here’s a bit from one:

After months of slavishly following the dictates of the Dobson crowd, the Bushies and their Republican sycophants are paying the price. Live by the base and die by the base has been the reigning philosophy of the Rovian crowd. The hard-core supposedly got them re-elected and now they are an albatross around their necks.

The GOP is suffering from the Dobson Syndrome named after the noted child psychologist and religious zealot Dr. James Dobson. The Syndrome strikes when the base is spoiled and coddled by an over-indulgent President which causes him to lose parental authority. The only solution? Taking them over his knee and giving them a good spanking – pretty unlikely from this Baby Boomer President who was raised on the teachings of Dr. Spock.

He then points to a Washington Post poll that shows GWB is starting to alienate the independent voter. And he adds:

Independents hold the key to the Democratic revival. While the Democrats must continue to oppose the Bushie agenda, they must also have an explicit non-partisan appeal to those who are unaffiliated…Dr. Moose suggests that Democrats need to reconnect with their inner Clinton.

PRECISELY. And this is why DNC Chair Howard Dean’s June Mammoth Mouth Offensive is counter productive for the party. Democrats, it seems, are working quite hard to pull defeat from the jaws of potential victory. The White House is having a hard time navigating between pleasing Dobson & Co. and keeping independent support. Instead of capitalizing on this and building bridges, Dean seems intent on stating things in a way that will chase potential allies away.

A SMOOTHER OPERATOR would capitalize on the GOP’s political and legislative stumbles by maintaining the support the Democrats already have and building on it. Dean seems to be in perpetual campaign mode and is grabbing the spotlight and taking it away from the GOP…and even away from his party.. and putting it on himself. One of the most vocal liberals lambasting Dean for putting the spotlight on him and his own mouth instead of on his party, its priorities and potential programs is liberal talk show host Ed Schulz (who almost sounds like Rush Limbaugh but with a slightly different accent — and different ideas).

More Bad News For The EU Constitution: It’s also losing support in New Europe.

The Approval Of The Nomination of California State Supreme Court Justice Janice Rogers Brown to a for-life seat on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit: The ever independent Talking Dog gives you his as-always non-blog-speak analysis. And, as always, it’s a must read. A small taste 4 U:

I’m one of those sticks-in-the-mud who believes that, for the most part, the judiciary is a pretty intrinsically conservative branch by nature (think stare decisis) as it is, and while certainly individual judges can move the law in their own way, compared to, say, the legislative branch which is actually charged with legislation, or the now-all-powerful executive branch, let’s just say I’m not particularly worried about the occasional “extremist” judge as compared to, say, a President and Congress (both parties) blithely unconcerned with the nation’s fiscal integrity, environmental health, compliance with its own laws (such as those against torture, for example), actual security or international standing. That’s just me, of course.


Should Spanking Be Banned?
We’re talking about spanking of CHILDREN, of course. The issue has come up in Massachusetts — like in the legislature — and John Hawkins has some thoughts on that.

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Posted by on Jun 4, 2005 in At TMV |

Around The ‘Sphere

Links are from sites with varying viewpoints. Opinions expressed do not necessarily express the views of TMV or its co-bloggers.

A New Conservative Blog Promises To Have Lots Of ORIGINAL Writing: The blog is American Cicero. It promises to get right-to-the point and vows to be stylistically different than most blogs:

The American Cicero is still able to think for himself, and his thoughts are presented here for your perusal, comment, and argument. His interests are wide-ranging and include politics (he is a member of the Conservative Party); religion (he is an orthodox Roman Catholic loyal to the Magisterium but also faithful to the Tridentine Mass); history; music; and art. These pages consist of genuine commentary on all these topics; they are not the cut-and-paste jobs that one finds on so many sites today. He hopes that you will be informed, amused, enraged, entertained, or moved by them.

Cut and paste? All blogs don’t do that. Us? Why, pshaw! We aim for good writing and don’t need to cut and past. Here’s one tip from Writing With Clarity:

Words are the writer’s principal tool. When you hear or see a word you are unsure of, jot it down, look up the definition, and put it in a vocabulary notebook or in a file in your PC. You also can go a step further and check a thesaurus for synonyms for that word. The deeper and richer your vocabulary, the more precise you can be when writing and the less time you will spend scrambling to find the right word while you are on a deadline. Suggestion: Do crossword puzzles and write down the words that are new to you.

I’m looking up a word now. A reader apparently likes what I write: he complimented me and said I write “like a real schmuck.” (Does anyone know what that means? It must mean Pulitzer Prize winning novelist, or something. I can’t find it in the dictionary…)

Did Analyists Simply Project Their Own Political Biases In Looking At France/Denmark Votes Against The New EU Constitution? Oxblog’s David Adesnik (in his as-usual solid analysis) thinks so. READ IT ALL but here’s part:

At the heart of this confusion is the remarkable ability of pundits of almost every stripe to project their own identity on to that of the victorious anti-constitution majority. The American center-left has persuaded itself that the ‘no’ vote represents a backlash against laissez faire Anglo-Saxon capitalism….In contrast, American conservatives are celebrating the defeat of the constitution as the rejection of everything represented by the left-leaning European elite.

He offers you some quotes and analysis then concludes:

To a certain extent, I am puzzled by the fact that the relatively bland E.U. constitution has become the Rorshach-style ink blot onto which European citizens have projected all of their resentments. Yet there are few things that antagonize democratic citizens more than an institution that threatens to take away their control of even some small part of their own lives and hand it over to unelected bureaucrats.

Indeed: every decision cannot be explained through an ideology. Sometimes the REAL answer to what’s going on is more basic. (Adesnik and Oxblog are required reading for anyone who wants to read thoughtful analysis and pointer links to thoughtful links).

A Fascinating Case In Spain: Spain granted a foreign woman amnesty for an unusual reason. Spain-based Barcepundit has the details.

Job Discrimination In Oregon Schools? Politicians aren’t going to be allowed to teach in Oregon schools..WAIT! We had that wrong! But it’s the same difference

The Danger Of Eye For An Eye Killings In Israel: Jewschool has a short but eloquent post giving you the shocking paragraphs from a news story. After one quote about how enjoyable it was to wipe people out the blog asks:”I wonder what he’s studying in school?”

We Thought (And Agreed With) Conservatives Said The Word Nazi Was Thrown Around Too Much To Discredit People Part XIVIIXXI: Read Latino Pundit for the latest verbal atomic bomb used when a thoughtful argument would have been more effective (we live 15 minutes from the San Diego-Tijuana border).

Is The Press Today Far Less Courageous Than During The Days Of Watergate? The Locust Fork has a long analysis making the case that today’s press can’t measure up to what it was during the Nixon administration.

A Liberal Group Is Warning About Conservative Bias but the ever-lively A Little More To The Right (one of our favorite conservative blogs) makes the case that it’s a bogus issue and also defends Rush Limbaugh.

More Incredible Stupidity Involving A Student In A School: We won’t even describe that inane situation involving this second grader. John Cole does it better than we could..

There’s A Definite Energy In Group Blogs and The Volokh Conspiracy looks at it.

Is Zimbabwe About To Explode In Mass Killings? Dave Koppel (who we had the pleasure of meeting and being with on a blogging panel at Stanford University) gives us a great overview. READ IT ALL but here is a small taste 4 U:

Back in 2001, Paul Gallant, Joanne Eisen, and I warned that Zimbabwe was “ripe for genocide.” We also detailed how the Mugabe tyranny has used gun licensing and registration laws, inherited from British colonial times, to disarm the people of Zimbabwe, leaving them helpless against government-controlled gangs of young thugs…..

But if the people of Zimbabwe had not been disarmed under the pretext of “gun safety”, they would be able to help themselves. A revolution would not be guaranteed to succeed, but fighting to live is much better than passively starving to death.

After the Holocaust, the international community said “Never again.” Yet in Zimbabwe, as in so many other nations in the last 60 years, the combination of citizen disarmament and international indifference has made democide a reality again and again and again.

Pat Buchanan The Inconsistent: Oh!pinion decimates the former Nixon administration staffer in an analytical post.

OUR VIEW: Buchanan was a great Crossfire co-host and a wonderful columnist. But he became a problem for his own party and there are some who say he’s….well, let’s say just some some claim he isn’t invited to many bar mitzvahs. That never bothered TMV, who loved his writing and TV appearances, even though he disagrees with him. But he (like Peggy Noon and Ben Stein) seems to have come unhinged with the Deep Throat story, writing bile-filled pieces which show their repressed fury over what happened to their old boss. They are GRUNTLED former employees. Oh!pinion’s piece is must reading.

Is Democratic Senator Robert Byrd In Re-Election Trouble? Polls say yes and James Joyner has a prediction about what will happen yes (we think he’s right).




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Posted by on Jun 2, 2005 in At TMV |

Around The ‘Sphere

Links are from sites with varying viewpoints. Opinions expressed do not necessarily express the views of TMV or its co-bloggers.

Watergate Wars: Revenge Of The Nixonites: Pat Buchanan and Chuck Colson hopped in a time machine and showed Today viewers the mind-set of people who were around Richard Nixon. And some people wonder why Nixon went down? And, no, it just isn’t TMV who feels this way. View THIS VIDEO via Crooks And Liars of Tom Brokaw, after the former NBC newsman gets a chance to mentally digest the slash-and-burn performances (particularly of Buchanan) aimied at discrediting Watergate source Deep Throat. Watch it and judge for yourself.

Showdown In Texas? The New Editor has this intriguing piece on the likelihood that Kay Bailey Hutchison will challenge Texas Governor Rick Perry in 2006. Note the possible Karl Rove connection…

Ralph Nader Calls For Bush To Be Impeached: The details at Centerfield where Brian Keegan writes in part (read it all):

Left unanswered by Nader is whether or not he still thinks there’s no difference between Gore and Bush, an irony I am compelled to acknowledge that at least one other person noticed first.

… Feels to me like the public is willing to grant Bush at worst a post-9/11 mulligan because his actions had a serious national security goal. FWIW, I myself am probably willing to grant Bush a mulligan, if only he’d stop pretending his drive hit the fairway. Even if impeachment or additional investigation is warranted, I am extremely reluctant to join any call for a showy and divisive reprise of either the endless Clinton closet hunt or the ugly invasion debate.

Our first thought: Oh, God, if you gave me 1 month to live my last wish would be: will someone please make the tiresome, sanctimonious, inconsistent Ralph Nader just go away? Please God…

What Would Jesus Drive? John Cole files this one under General Stupidity and he makes the case quite well that it belongs in that category.

On Deep Throat: Bull Moose says this:

After years of keeping an eye on the left and assorted dissenters, Mr. Hoover’s FBI got its man – Richard Nixon. The revelation that a protege of J.Edgar, Mark Felt, was deep throat is mega-ironic. Nixon shared Hoover’s sentiments. But in the end it was neither the commies nor the liberals who were the source of the Old Man’s undoing. It was the FBI.

This revelation is a blow to the right’s version of Watergate. It was not a Vast Left Wing Conspiracy that engineered a coup. Rather, it was a button-down G Man who told the truth.

A Regular Clip Joint: Astronaut Neil Armstrong is threatening to sue a barber who sold some of his hair to a collector. There should be an investigation to get to the root of this problem that has gotten Armstrong’s dandruff up…

Before And After Photos Of The Mainstream Media via Tales of A Wandering Mind. Yep!

The Worst Sentence Ever Published In The New York Times is pointed out here by Ann Althouse. (I was out of breath by the time I got half through it!)

Star Wars: Revenge of The Sith: Here’s a great-read review by Little Miss Attila.

MORE On Star Wars: Revenge Of The Sith: Stephen Green aka Vodka Pundit offers a characteristically lively and thoughtful take on it.

Separated At Birth? (Looks That Way) A MUST SEE at A Little More To The Right (this is a GREAT conservative blog with a wonderful sense of humor, one of TMV’s favorites!!)

Don’t Let Politicians, Amway Salesmen And Others Know About THIS: They’ve discovered a hormone that increases your trust in your fellow human beings…

A REMINDER TO READERS: If you haven’t visited Booker Rising do so immediately. This is a great blog that bills itself as a “News site for black moderates and black conservatives” but it is truly for anyone. It has superb excerpts from key blogs. It is a MUST READ each day — and a good read.




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Posted by on May 31, 2005 in At TMV |

Around The ‘Sphere

Our occasional linkfest giving you interesting reading from sites representing varying viewpoints. Opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect the opinion of The Moderate Voice or his co-bloggers.

Has Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist Flip-Flopped On Stem Cell Research? Charging RINO looks at the issue.

This Ties In With A Question About The GOP: Is there now what Bull Moose calls a neo-AuH2O faction in the GOP? He explains:

Barry Goldwater was the first prophet of the conservative insurgency. Despite his disastrous defeat in ’64, his race was the harbinger of the right’s ascendancy to power. In his later years, of course, Barry expressed his disgust and disagreement with the emergence of the religious right as a force. He colorfully collided with its leaders.

He notes that Goldwater didn’t like Jerry Falwell. And Ronald Reagan? Bull Moose notes that RR paid lip service to the religious right and that was about it but:”In contrast, Bush and Rove have elevated the religious right to a dominant status in the Party ,while eschewing any notion of limited government. The reign of the Bushies is predicated on an alliance of plutocracy and theocracy.”

And what does this mean? Bull Moose (who used to work for Senator John McCain) writes:

The “neo-Goldwaterites” are Republican center-right voters who are fiscally conservative-libertarian, defense hawks who are repelled by the inordinate power of the religious right. They are not necessarily moderates – in fact they have a deeper commitment to balanced budgets and limited government than the Bushies.

Watch for the “neo-g’s” to play a significant role in the ’08 Republican Presidential primaries as the conventional Bushie-cons divide the spoils of the religious right. And Barry’s band has a natural leader who is truly the heir to his political legacy.

It makes sense because: (a)A segment of the GOP presidential hopefuls will be wooing the religious right and they could split that part of the vote. (b)The stem cell research issue is just about to boil over: it has NOT hit its peak yet. (c)We already know of some Democrats and independents who would enthusiastically register in the GOP to vote in primaries for the candidate Bull Mooose suggests could be a viable one.

Resources And More Resources: Julien’s List (on our blogroll under Left Voices) is compling a GREAT resource page with lots of links. Take a look — and bookmark it. This will be of use to bloggers, journalists and plain old citizens who have a life and don’t blog.

A Complicated Tale Of A Former American Hostage Indicted For Plotting Hostage Taking In Romani can be found at The Jawa Report. We won’t try to describe it here. Read the post in its entirety. Curious…

Government’s Tax Citizens For Everything…But SPERM BANKS? Read this post and you’ll get the thrust of it.

Fate And History: Iowa Voice has been pondering a bunch of what ifs, such as:

I was just browsing through the Memoirs of Ronald Reagan for the umpteenth time…and I got to thinking about some “what ifs”.

At first, I thought “What if Ford had beaten Carter in 1976?” Ford more than likely would have ran again in 1980. Would Reagan still have ran? Would he have won? Would inflation, gas prices, etc., all been spiraling out of control? Would Iran have fallen and the hostages taken?

Then, I got to thinking even more deeply. We only had Ford because of Watergate. We only had Watergate because of Nixon. We only had Nixon because of Vietnam. We only had Vietnam because of Johnson. So what if we never had Johnson? What if Kennedy wasn’t assasinated in 1963? He surely would have been re-elected in a walk, so that would have meant no Johnson, at least not until 1968.

He outlines his question in more detail (read this in full). And includes this:

It’s my belief that if Kennedy was not killed, we wouldn’t have had Johnson, Ford, or Carter. We may have still had Nixon, but we more than likely wouldn’t have had Reagan. The Soviet Union would still be around (and winning).

I’d be really interested to hear other bloggers’ thoughts on this. To think that so much history pivots on a single event of mere seconds (the shots fired by Oswald) just boggles the mind. I am a great believer in fate. That things happen for a reason, and that forces conspire to place certain men in the middle of events. My standard statement is that “History will find a way”. History and fate have always found the right person for the right job at the right time.

So? What do YOU think??

Do Conservatives Actually Fear Air America? Crooks And Liar’s John Amato makes the case that they do in this satire run on The American Street. A small part of his argument:

They will cry and whine and whimper at its arrival, but they are afraid, afraid that time is running out. The fairness doctrine’s destruction was their lift off, and now the domination of the airwaves will slowly diminish. It’s too late now. It has begun. The infrastructure is being built and voices are in training. The carefully controlled media will soon follow suit. They have to. When the money pours in the corporate stockholders will want their returns. The republicans are like the moneychangers that Jesus kicked out of the temples. They disguise themselves in the bible, but they cannot hide any longer. David will soon slay Goliath once again.

Their arguments will grow tired as a new and fresher voice will emerge. Be patient where we are now because the preparation has just begun. Air America is flying high in the twilight summer air, like a magnificent dove, its white feathered wings spread across the majestic skies. They try to extinguish it but the match has been lit. The tremors have begun; a rippling effect is in motion. Even Pat Robertson’s God cannot stop the coming storm.

How To Support The Troops: Winds of Change has an exhaustive post with tons of links on ways you can help. It doesn’t matter what policies you support or don’t support. These are American young people who are out there and could use some help (we donated our old laptop to a company that refurbishes computers and sends them to the people out in the field).

Political Purity Political Shmurity: Jay Tea at Wizbang has a great post about people insisting on political “purity” (read that: inflexible, no compromise, take-no-prisoners politics). Read it IN FULL but here are a few excerpts:

The extremists on both sides tend to test everyone on their “purity” to their ideals, and cast aside or turn on those who fall short of their goals. The Democrats are doing that with people like Zell Miller and Joe Lieberman, and the Republicans have their own history of turning on the moderates in their ranks. They both seem to forget that in a democratic republic like we have, numbers count — and chasing away people is not a very good way to expand one’s influence and advance one’s agenda.

A while ago, in my ongoing quarter-hearted effort to lose some weight (I’ll let you know when it gets to half-hearted), I started piling lettuce on my sandwiches. The idea was to add bulk to the meal so I’d feel fuller, without actually eating more stuff that will add to my weight problem. Now, when I eat sandwiches without lettuce, I notice that I’m hungrier after. I think both political parties could use a little time in the kitchen, because it’s that added “bulk” in the party that often makes the difference between tasting victory and still being left hungry after the election.

Now, “purity” does have a second meaning — uncorrupted, unsullied, untainted. Those are, indeed, things to be valued. But the two meanings are non synonymous, and those who attempt to blur the lines between them do so to their own detriment.

Yes. American politics used to be about aggregating interests, not just going after your right or left base and telling the rest of the voters to go hang or to do the biologically impossible (well, for some politicians it IS possible, but they’re too busy doing it to the voters who aren’t part of their base).

The new name of the game is to just make sure all your supporters are beside you so they can destroy the other side in the political gang war — versus the older style, where the two gangs might sit down and try to ward off the bloodletting…and even invite non-gang members to come in and help settle the problem. Walk away from TOTAL victory? Oh, that’s so 20th century!

THE REVILING OF A BLOGGER: No, for a change, it’s not TMV being denounced by people of both parties. THIS time its Armies’ of Liberation’s Jane Novak who is being trashed in the Yemen Times with the headline:”Jane Novak a docile pupil of a monkey monk.” Whoa! Them’s fighting words! It’s too complicated for us to go into here but it is a MUST read because it seems to be retaliation for her writings about Al Qaeda links in Yemen’s government, plus repressive policies there. READ IT IN FULL.




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Posted by on May 25, 2005 in At TMV |

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Our occasional linkfest that helps you get good reading of ALL viewpoints. Links are NOT selected because of or limited to one viewpoint — and don’t necessarily reflect the opinions of The Moderate Voice or its independent-thinking co-bloggers.

TIME IS RUNNING OUT TO PROTECT INTERNET FREEDOM: Mike Krempasky is continuing his bipartisan, nonideology battle to make readers and bloggers aware of possible upcoming FEC rules changes that could drastically change Internet freedoms. The comment period closes June 3. He writes:

As a blogger, or blog reader – you have valuable input from your firsthand experience that the FEC desperately needs. You don’t have to be a lawyer, and you’ve got a duty to weigh in. Please take a moment and read over and endorse the 11 Principles for Online Freedom we’ve written up with the Center for Democracy & Technology and the Institute for Politics, Technology, and The Internet.

CLICK HERE for those.
He also notes you can leave your comment here on the GOP Red State site or here on the Democratic DailyKos blog. And he’s requesting if you do leave a comment, to send him and his associates a copy since it’ll help them fight this fight for readers and bloggers alike.

FOOTNOTE: TMV was on a panel with Krempasky at Stanford University. He’s highly thoughtful and sincere and is rightfully receiving praise from all sides for his efforts to protect the freedoms you now read on the Internet every day. To do it, he needs readers/bloggers’ help.

ABOUT THOSE 14 MODERATE SENATORS WHO PULLED THE FINGER AWAY FROM THE IMPENDING NUCLEAR OPTION: Todd Kennedy, aka The Pragmatic Progressive, has this excellent post on the possible motivations of the Senators. It’s concise and makes sense…



SEX OFFENDERS IN YOUR MIDST: We did a post earlier about the discovery of sex offenders getting state-paid Viagra in New York State. In addition, TMV’s foster son just discovered that his kids lived right NEXT to a sex offender. He discovered it by going online. Here’s a resource for you to do the same and see if you’re protected in your neighborhood.



TERRORISTS: Bring ‘Em On…In Court…Or so says Phil Carter in a piece posted at his always exceptionally thoughtful site Intel-Dump. “New Army War College journal piece says we should be worried about our enemies fighting us in our courts — I say “lawfare” is vastly preferable to “warfare”,” he writes. Read the whole post. Here’s a small taste:



So to those who say you should be worried about lawfare, I say “get real.” America’s legal institutions are fully capable of handling this threat. Moreover, if ever there were a capabilities mismatch that worked in our favor, this is it. America is the most litigious nation in the world. Our top law schools crank out more lawyers every year than the combined special operations schools of the U.S. military. Added up, we have many times more lawyers in this country than we have combat troops in the Army and Marines. American lawyers are a notoriously aggressive, bloodthirsty and ruthless lot, who take no quarter and give none either. If terrorists and enemy states really want to fight us in the courts, then I say “bring ’em on.”





WOULD IKE EISENHOWER TODAY BE CALLED A RINO? Probably, since it turns out he said this. But, then he was OH SO 20th Century!



A CONSERVATIVE BLOGGER TAKES HIS PARTY TO TASK ON NUCLEAR OPTION: John Cole who, we have repeatedly said, adheres to a set of firm political principles that he doesn’t suspend for electoral expediency, has yet another tart post aimed at GOPers. His posts MUST be read IN FULL or you can lose his argument. For instance, he makes no bones of the fact that he feels the Democrats’ behavior on judicial nominations was intolerable. But then he goes after his party for changing the rules. A tiny taste here of a no-holds-barred message to members of his own party who are bascially telling him to shut up if he considers himself a loyal partisan:



So, wingnuts, you have set the stage. I understand I am either with you or against you, and you are unwilling to advance any legislation I think is sensible, and you are unwilling to to think twice about things I dislike. I get it- you want my vote and you want me to shut..up. I get it- with you or against you.



But let me warn you- the Democrats just don’t seem that damned scary anymore. You people have me to the point that if it were 2004 all over again, and I knew what I know now, I don’t know if I necessarily would have pulled the lever for that two-faced weasel Kerry, but I would have found it EXCEPTIONALLY difficult to vote for Bush.



HEY, PHIL…The hippie era ended years ago. I don’t think you know it.



WHAT DID FORBES MAGAZINE SAY IS THE SAFEST PLACE TO LIVE? Can’t guess? It’s here where you’ll find all (and more) than you wanted to know.

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Posted by on May 17, 2005 in At TMV |

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SPENDING TIME WITH “THE FILIBUSTERS”: Pennywit (which we think should be Pennywise because he makes so much sense) has a must-read post of traveling around with The Filibusters…college students in the capitol protesting the upcoming “nuclear option” that will eliminate filibusters on judicial nominees…by filibustering. This is the kind of blog post that USES blogs’ potential by using actual, detailed, newspaper quality (these days we will not say newsmagazine quality) reporting. Read it for the info — and if you have a blog, emulate it for its content and style. (Priscilla Queen of the Dissent would like it, too..)



Read The New Interview With Bob Dole if you haven’t already done so. In this interview by Jonathan Singer, Dole holds out hope — that the country isn’t on the verge of a long period of terrible polarization and partisan hatred. Singer (our newest guest contributor) was nice enough to link to this original interview on our site yesterday and we mentioned it before. But it is a MUST READ because of the information, solid Q&A interview technique and how Singer elicits Dole’s personality. Singer has his own views (as we all DO) but he does this interview 100 percent professionally, trying to get NEW info for his blog readers –which he does. REQUIRED READING for political junkies, aspiring journalists and all bloggers. (FOOTNOTE: This site has also been blessed recently by Greg Piper’s report on an anti-terrorism demonstration by Muslims and by Jack Grant’s original letters from France. These are new twists in the exciting blog form).



DISGREEMENT AMONG THE DEMMIES: Barney Frank doesn’t like the way DNC Chair Howard Dean has blasted Tom DeLay. Here’s some excellent video.

IT LOOKS LIKE THE NUCLEAR OPTION TO AXE THE FILIBUSTER ON JUDICIAL NOMINEES WILL HAPPEN and here’s an ad against it via the always-lively Crooks and Liars.

Is The Cannes Film Festival The Hate American Film Festival? Scared Monkey thinks it is and tells you why.

Is Basic Research And Development Off Track In The US? The New Editor offers a thought-provoking piece that suggests it is — and that there are consquences.



A Blunt And Commonsensical View On The Newsweek Koran Story Fiasco comes via Bull Moose. In a MUST READ POST he writes in party:



The Moose argues that accountability is a two-way street.Newsweek has much to answer for. The magazine should have had more than a single source for such a flammable story that has triggered death and mayhem….



Before the Pentagon strikes a holier than thou line on accountability, the civilian leadership there should take a hard look in the mirror. Secretary Rumsfeld and the gang have hardly stepped up to the plate regarding the horrific errors on their watch ranging from the failure to prepare for the Iraq occupation to Abu Ghraib. Perhaps Newsweek is only following Rummy’s example.





Liberals Really Have Their Work Cut Out For Them, according to Kevin Drum. He explains in detail how they’re outnumbered by conservatives and writes:

The rest of the time Democrats have governed only by appealing to moderates as well as liberals. Republicans, conversely, with a large conservative base to start with, have the luxury of paying less attention to the center.



Unfair? Sure. Deal with it. The reality is that liberals have two options: we can convince more people to become liberals — an unlikely prospect given that the number of self-identified liberals has stayed absolutely rock steady at 18% for the past four decades — or we can try to persuade more moderates to make common cause with us.

One prediction: if the “nuclear option” goes through and American politics becomes dominated by social conservatives with no attempt at consensus building, moderates move to the Democratic party. Why? Because the GOP could scare them in that direction. Would that be enough to offset a solid social conservative block? Uncertain. THE BIG IF: can the Democrats nominate someone appealing to centrists who could still excite the party’s left wing? Also uncertain.



ANOTHER IMPORTANT TAKE ON THE NEWSWEEK KORAN STORY FIASCO has arrived and at this point it would get lost in our roundup. We’ve run views from the right and left. This take from The Light Of Reason is an important one, since it raises some points strongly that you don’t see in many other analyses. Read it all but here’s a small taste:



I doubt very much that the Bush administration or the hawks could achieve outright censorship at this point. The outcry (from a “large and angry minority,â€? although not the one Reynolds depends on) would be too great. But there is a secondary, lesser goal: intimidation. The hawks hope that, by endlessly beating up Newsweek and making mainstream journalism appear to be “irresponsibleâ€? to the point of “causingâ€? deaths, the mainstream media will be far less likely to raise uncomfortable questions or write awkward stories about the various projects of the Bush administration, both foreign and domestic….





Mexican President Vicente Fox Put His Foot And Whole Leg In His Mouth when he said Mexicans coming to the United States want to do the jobs “not even blacks” want to do. Black conservative blogger LaShawn Barber says she doesn’t see what he has to apologize for.



I think what he said is true. Americans in general, not just blacks, are so used to living in a welfare state, they’d probably rather exist on the government dole than do “undignified� work. I believe there’s dignity in all work, as long as you’re hard working and self-supporting. But nobody asked me.



Unfortunately, some people are taught from birth that it’s OK to live off the labor of others. Welfare checks are an entitlement instead of a source of shame. But Fox should have kept race out of it.





But Molotov at the superb (one of TMV’s absolute favorites) Booker Rising, a site ostensibly for black moderates and conservatives (but of interest to everyone due to its constant quality) disagrees:



We disagree with Ms. Barber. The comments were racist, and inaccurate, and she should at least be calling Fox out harsher for singling out black folks. Before illegal immigration, it was black folks who did these jobs and did them well. Ever more reason why the Congressional Black Caucus should stop missing in action and put its collective foot up the ass of Vicente Fox and illegal immigration in general, and stand up for black employment and against lawbreakers.

(Readers will want to check both of these lively sites out).



Were Some Border Patrol Officials Trying To Make The Border Vigilante Minutemen Look Bad? Mike Minton thinks so and tells you why.



Free Press Under Fire is how The Loust Fork’s Glynn Wilson sees it and he outlines his argument in this blunt post here.



Indeed, What Was REALLY Behind The Newsweek Apology And Then The Retraction On The Koran Story? Sploid’s Ken Layne gives a fascinating analysis here in this shift memo written for Sploid staffers.












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Posted by on May 5, 2005 in At TMV |

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The Bush Administration Is Fighting A War Against Pornography: Here’s Jazz Shaw’s take on it. (My view? Pornography? I don’t even have a pornograph!)

Is Hamas A Terrorist Group Or A Political Group? GeoPolitical Review explores the issue.

Walter Mondale And The Nuclear Option: Yes, the former Veep wrote a piece in the Minneapolis Star-Tribune opposing it — but Basie’s Jonathan Singer also did an ORIGINAL INTERVIEW with him. You can read about both here on Basie, a blog that increasingly breaks ground with fresh info.

WORKING FOR THE MOB: Some doctors helped the mob with stick ups.


Is Al Gore Eying 2008? The New Editor looks at it. Excerpt:”Will he pull a Nixon, when that former two-term VP who ran again in 1968 after losing a very close election in 1960? I don’t know, but two recent blurbs certainly indicate something might be afoot.”

POLITICAL OUTRAGE IN TEXAS: The Garlic’s headline:”Texas Bill Banning Cheerleading Causes Panic, Confusion and Exodus…Teens Flee State By Thousands, Causing Gridlock; See Bill As Ban On Being Teen” Read it in full here.

Has President Bush Turned A Political Corner? Democrat Ruy Teixeira doesn’t think so. Read in full his analysis here. His conclusion:”Turning the corner? Sounds more like running into a brick wall to me.”

IS THE RIGHT BECOMING THE MIRROR IMAGE OF THE LEFT THAT THEY HATED FOR SO LONG? Centrist Bull Moose thinks so. Just a small part of the post that independent thinkers should read in full:

The right has become the mirror image of all they dislike about the left. Both the secular and the religious right kvetch about their victimization while they control at least two branches of government and their penetration of the media is thorough and growing. They are crybabies who patrol the halls of power. The left has an opening to both appeal to Republican moderates who are repulsed by the direction of their party and to the religiously observant who reject the leadership of the Dobsons, Falwells and Robertson’s.

Al Gore Gets An Award For….You Guessed It…The INTERNET and Wizbang has the details and some vital links. (Remember: if it wasn’t for Al Gore you wouldn’t be reading this. So there.)

THE MINUTEMEN AT THE BORDER is the issue and you’d think a blog with the name like Latino Pundit would give you a predictable analysis. NOT! This blog is a mecca for independent thought. A small taste of this read-in-full-post:”In all seriousness, I wouldn’t consider them vigilantes but for whatever reason they are doing what they do it comes down to action not thought. And their actions are protecting our borders. Nothing more.”


LOCAL ENVIRONMENTALISM LIVES — IN OAKLAND and blogger Jerry Brown has tons of details about it. (PS: He’s also the Mayor of Oakland…and has a great blog)



CHRISTOPHER HITCHENS ON THE CHRISTIAN RIGHT: This was a monster topic in many weblogs. We passed on it due to time constraints and the fact that we dealt with that issue in our own post extensively a bit earlier. Some of the blogtopia debate centered on a killer quote Hitchens got from the late Senator Barry Goldwater Read Ann Althouse’s concise post on it here (with links to Hitchens and a Bibical passage).




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ARE BUSH’S PRESENT POLITICAL PROBLEMS DUE TO KARL ROVE CHANGING HIS JOB? Here’s one view.



AND IS GEORGE BUSH STARTING TO RESEMBLE HIS FATHER? Bull Moose thinks so. Read his post in full. A small taste:



Laura Bush’s superb performance at the White House’s Correspondence Dinner was the most effective political moment of the Bush Administration since her husband’s inaugural address…Otherwise, the Bush Agenda is quickly losing traction. Last Thursday’s press conference was a feeble attempt to resurrect the agenda. It failed. If anything, it exacerbated divisions within Republican ranks.



Like his father, W. desperately needs the national security issue to predominate. Unlike his father’s war, the outcome of his Iraq war is uncertain. What is the same, however, is that the son’s domestic program is no more popular than his dad’s.That is why it is Laura time.



MAY THEY BURN IN HELL AND THEY DEFINITELY WILL: Go here to the Jawa Report and watch the video of the Australian taken hostage. See the “brave” masked terrorists standing over their 60-ish prisoner who is clearly in a state of shock, grief and terror (their goal) as he reads his statement. People who agree with their goals insist this is all political, but there is a huge element of sadism in these videos. It leads you to wonder: can anybody REALLY think that getting a terrified person who has two guns held to his head or fears his head will be sawed off to demand that troops be pulled out of Iraq is going to have any impact on policy?



WAS THE FLORIDA SUPREME COURT RIGHT IN UPHOLDING THE RIGHT OF PROSECUTORS TO SEEK RUSH LIMBAUGH’S MEDICAL RECORDS? The Talking Dog gives his take, which is not completely what you may think before you read it or after you read part of it. Here’s a tiny part:



The fact is, there are certain things that we are supposed to presume are private. If my doctor is committing a crime, or some professional infraction, then certainly, protecting his or her patients, and the public, may require the government looking at those records (assuming appropriate protections of the patients’ privacy are maintained)…Sorry, but we’re supposed to be a free country. We’re already in too much jeopardy about everything else we do. Getting medical treatment just has to be off limits.



Now read the whole thing and see how someone can put aside his personal feelings to make a statement on the facts — even though he makes it VERY clear to his readers what he feels about Rush. (TTD would make a great lawyer…)



THERE ARE SOME POTENTIALLY H-U-G-E CHANGES GOING ON IN THE BLOGOSPHERE IN TERMS OF $$$ AND ATTRACTING THOUGHTFUL PEOPLE and Oxblog’s David Adesnik has the details.



DID A U.S. SATELLITE REALLY SOLVE THE QUESTION ABOUT THE SPEED OF THE CAR IN WHICH AN ITALIAN INTELLIGENCE AGENT WAS SHOT BY U.S. FORCES? Some don’t believe it. The Pokiburo Diktat explains why.



Joe Scarborough Has A Selective Memory San Diego Union-Tribune TV columnist Bob Laurence writes on his blog. A MUST READ IN FULL if you’re interested in media issues. He focuses on J.S.’s handling of the Joe Bolton issue and writes:”The important issue for the rest of us is to remember that the stuff we hear on talk TV, just like talk radio, ain’t necessarily so. People, including the hosts, often say what they wish were true, not always what really is true.” As Bill Frist would say: “Amen.”



If You Were Promised It’d Be The End Of The World And It Wasn’t Could You Sue? And would your case be strengthened by you handing over all your money to a group who promised you’d meet God (or G-d for some). So not only didn’t the world not end but you didn’t meet God. Could you get your money back? Here’s what happened when two women tried.



There Are Rumors That Due To A Scandal Paula Abdul May Be Booted From American Idol. So who should replace her? Some ideas here.





Apple Is Being Sued By TigerDirect
because Apples’ new Tiger OS is hogging Google links, reports Right Thinking From The Left Coast. Details here. And Right Thinking’s Lee gives us the best line of the year:”Steve Jobs held a press conference earlier today in which he announced that the next version of OS X would be named “Teen Lolitas.”











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Posted by on Apr 30, 2005 in At TMV |

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Our all-too-infrequent linkfest aimed at bringing you DIVERSE VIEWS from all over the Blog-o-you-know-what. So we do NOT limit them to one viewpoint. Opinions do NOT necessarily represent the views of The Moderate Voice. This will be expanded a bit MORE today and when this sentence vanishes this post will be complete.

IS CALIFORNIA GOVERNOR ARNOLD SWARZENEGGER GOING TO BECOME THE NEXT JESSE VENTURA? It’s a very interesting — and valid — question, as those of us here in California can attest. Jonathan Singer looks at this issue.

AND IS ARNIE PULLING A PETE WILSON? Professor Bainbridge reminds us about what happened to Pete Wilson. FOOTNOTE: I was a reporter on the San Diego Union, which had good relations with Wilson, who had been San Diego’s Mayor. Wilson’s right hand man was the wonderful and brilliant Otto Bos, a former Union reporter. Otto suddenly died and it was after his death that Wilson veered towards anti-immigration rhetoric and a bit more to the right, which doomed the GOP in California. It’s a pity because Wilson was one of the more solid officials the state has seen. (Some Wilson people are in the Ahnold’s administration).

MORE ON THE STATE OF TALK RADIO from Pennywit.

AND WHAT ABOUT TELEVISION?
Some say it makes you smarter.

THOSE WEIRD STAR TREK FANS
: Should parents hide their kids from them?

DARFUR: It leaves an impression on a kid.

THIS JUST IN!!!!!!!!!!!!!! We reported the story of the burrito weapon at a school. Now here’s a detailed, complete report.

FAVORITE POLITICAL WEBSITES: Right Wing News’ John Hawkins has assembled his list of favorite top 20 political websites and invites others bloggers to do the same and send them to him and he’ll link to them.








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Posted by on Apr 26, 2005 in At TMV |

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Our periodic linkfest to introduce readers to a WIDE VARIETY of views from all over the ‘Sphere. We do NOT restrict mentioned links to one viewpoint — and views do not necessary reflect the opinion of The Moderate Voice.

SO NOW THERE’S A NEW POPE and skippy the bush kangaroo (who writes in all in lower case and coined the word Blogtopia) wonders if the new Pope was separated at birth.

TWO JOURNALISTS ARE ASSIGNED TO DO A STORY ON DRINKING so what’s wrong with doing a little on-the-scene research?



HOW DO YOU DEFINE A WOMAN?
Is there a danger that it’ll be legislated so a woman is defined by her baby-making abilities? It seems that way.



SOME MORE THOUGHTS ON THE CONFRONTATION OVER JUDICIAL FILIBUSTERS by Bogus Gold.



THE ARNOLD SCHWARZENEGGER FACTOR
in California is (for now) dimming a bit. The inimitatble James Wolcott puts it under his microscope with, as usual, the most acid wit around. Small taste:



The LA Times and the local news broadcasts out here (which really live down to their nitwit reputation–it’s as if the anchors had the Botox injected directly into their brains) are aburst with stories about Arnold in Trouble. His poll numbers have sunk into Bush territory, the unions are running TV ads slamming the governor into the mat, and wife Maria Shriver has jumped in with both scary cheekbones to exercise damage control.





FOR ONE ONE OF THE BEST DAILY DIGESTS OF THE WEB AROUND
a reminder to go to Booker Rising which bills itself as “News site for black moderates and black conservatives.” But it’s for everyone.





COULD PEOPLE IN THE CENTER UPSET BY BOTH PARTIES’ PREOCCUPATION WITH THEIR BASES LEAVE AND FORM A THIRD PARTY? Bull Moose (one of our favorites anywhere) looks at the issue and prospects the Internet could play a role. Read the whole post but here’s one point:



If the two parties don’t get their act together, it is indeed within the realm of possibility that the Internet could fuel a most historic insurgency in American history – a successful cyberspace third party Presidential bid.My, its getting hot in the blogosphere – maybe the Moose is in heat!





THERE IS A LOT OF VITRIOL AIMED AT RELIGION
and John Cole takes iton bluntly.





AN ACADEMIC DOUBLESPEAK BILL IN FLORIDA
that is truly amazing is put under the microscope by the new blog Owned by Cats. Why is it that you already guess it has something to do with the renewed debate over evolution??



THE CASE FOR JOHN BOLTON BEING CONFIRMED is made by David Limbaugh (Rush’s brother) who has a very lively and well written blog.



COLLAPSE OF THE BIG MEDIA?
Jeff Jarvis has a tons of links. He asks if we’re seeing a “tipping point” or a melt down. What’s certain is that a massive shift is going on and it seems to be accelerating and weblogs are an important part of it. You can see this in the number of weblogs being started, the growth in many of them, the increase in academic conferences focusing on blog topics and how search engines now list blog posts extensively. And this is JUST THE BEGINNING, folks…



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Posted by on Apr 18, 2005 in At TMV |

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Our periodic festival of links from all over the Internet. It’s not restricted to any one ideology — and opinions do not necessarily represent ours.

THE EU CONSTITUTION’S PROBLEMS IN FRANCE: We’ve done some posts on this. Now Centerfield’s Jon Kaye looks at this issue. Read it in full, but here’s a small part: “The pundits are all out looking for reasons for this. But none of them mentioned the possibility that people might simply have read it. I read about 2/3 of it, and it’s bad.”

YES RUSH LIMBAUGH DID USE THAT “BJ” WORD
when referring to Al Gore’s new cable network. Three things about this: 1)It’s a further cheapening of political discourse, 2)if anyone but Rush or Sean said it some folks would be demanding — and getting — a fine from the FCC, 3) Rush has now set himself up for this withering no-holds-barred response it by the inimitable James Wolcott.


SHOULD BILL FRIST USE THE NUCLEAR OPTION TO ELIMINATE THE FILIBUSTER IN JUDICIAL APPOINTMENTS?
Frist is now lining up (and pressuring) Senate GOPers to go along with it with appeals to party unity (and threats about political longevity from others). So that means Republicans all think this is the way to go. NOT A TALL. Lee at Right Thinking has a lot of thoughts on this, which should be read in its entirety. A small part 4 U:



There’s no excusing what the Democrats are doing. But eliminating the power of the filibuster is more akin to the Vietnam-era statement that “we had to destroy the village in order to save it.� One day the GOP is going to be the minority party in Congress. (I think it’s going to happen sooner than anyone thinks. My prediction: look for the Democrats to pick up the Senate in 2006.) And when the find themselves in the minority, they’re sure as hell going to wish they had that filibuster.





Our allies the Holocaust-deniers:
An excellent analytical look at Turkey at Red State.



WHAT IS A PROGRESSIVE?
That’s a questions both Republicans and Democrats have asked. Jazz Shaw gives you his view.



I HAVE TO ADMIT IT’S MY CHECK-BACK-OFTEN WEBSITE and it’s the Drudge like (but not delivering a party message) Sploid, part of Nick Denton’s blog group.



A LINKFEST FROM ASIAN BLOGS via Simon World.



JOHN BOLTON IS BEING EVALUATED AS THE ADMINISTRATION’S NOMINEE TO BE UN AMBASSADOR in Congress — and on the Internet by Charting Rhino’s moderate Republican Jeremy Dibbell. Read his take on Bolton here.



WE’VE CONSIDERED GETTING A DIGITAL CAMERA FOR THIS BLOG and TMV’s vent website but the choices are mind-bloggling. Donald Sensing unboggles it here with specifics on the camera he just bought and why.



IS THERE NEW HOPE FOR ALZHEIMERS SUFFERERS? James Joyner fills you in.



LIVE FROM NEW YORK…IT’S TOM DELAY! Saturay Night Live lampooned DeLay this weekend. Crooks and Liars has the video.



REMEMBER, IT’S INNOCENT UNTIL PROVEN GUILTY:
Just look at his kind face.



SEN. JOHN MCCAIN HAS SAID HE’LL VOTE AGAINST THE NUCLEAR OPTION TO REMOVE THE FILIBUSTER and some in the GOP call him a party traitor and not-so-subtly warn that they’ll destroy any presidential aspirations. The author of Bull Mooose (who used to work for McCain) another take on it. A small part:



The Moose was once again reminded why he would crawl over a field of broken glass for John McCain.



We live in an age of political cowards, pontificators and panderers. It is rare for a politician to endanger his political future in defense of the truth. A modern version of JFK’s Profiles in Courage would be brief indeed.



That is why it is inspiring for one leader to dare to commit the truth, even if it jeopardizes his popularity with a key constituency. The Moose’s former boss did that just this week on “Hardball” when he announced his opposition to the nuclear option.



MORE ON THE FILIBUSTER: An excellent, long post by “Kevin Featherly, who includes a detailed list of instances throughout history when it was used. Here’s part of what he says in this must-read item:



(In) each case, even the snakiest examples, complaints, protests and concerns of minority parties in the Senate and the constituents they’ve represented got heard and had to be considered. Compromise was called for, even if it wasn’t always delivered.



That may often be unpalatable–and it certainly was unpalatable at the time to senate majorities and presidents. I don’t happen to think that “compromise” is a dirty word….Forty years ago, it was the the Republicans arguing for the preservation of the filibuster on the grounds that the constitutional framers meant for the Senate to be deliberative and that doing away with the filibuster would put an end to the right to hold extensive floor debates. Now, the Democrats are arguing that position.”



HE WAS GOING TO RETURN FROM LEBANON BUT NOW HE’LL STAY: Michael Totten says things are heating up there. Read his post and also look at the wonderful photos he has of the city.



SPEAKING OF WHICH, LEBANON’S ‘CEDAR REVOLUTION’ NOW HAS ITS OWN BLOG and it’s here, written from tent city.



A REMINDER THAT IF YOU WANT TO USE A SUPER QUICK WAY TO LOOK AT A CROSS SECTION OF BLOGS
you need to visit Punditdrome.



BIG DEBATE AMONG CONSERVATIVES OVER WHETHER TO HAVE PASSPORTS AT THE BORDER FOR DAY TRIPPERS: Read the details at Carpe Bonum. Our view: TMV lives 15 minutes from the San Diego-Tijuana border. It’s easy for a terrorist to get across by driving or walking. Passports make sense. It’s fascinating to see among lock-step supporters of this administration how many of them swiftly shift gears as soon as there is any kind of a shift from the White House which first came out for the passports, then started fudging on the issue. The bottom line is: the Wall Street Journal article Carpe quotes is wrong and political rhetoric: this is not a “bureaucratic” idea it’s a security idea and even those of us who enjoy the ease with which we get across the border know that if we are talking TRUTHFULLY our border is a terrorist entry port waiting to happen. PS: Carpe Bonum and TMV agree totally on this — as will anyone who has driven or walked across that border.



GENOCIDE IN SUDAN
: Who’s to blame for standing by? Anadministration or everyone? Uncorrelated has some thoughts.




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A BIG CONTROVERSY OVER A NEW GROUP OF BLACK CONSERVATIVE BLOGGERS called The Conservative Brotherhood is unfolding. Visit Booker Rising which has some other great links and explains:



Also check out commentary by Cobb (who founded TCB), Ramblings Journal, Uncle Sam’s Cabin, and Molotov’s blunt comments to white conservatives about the issue. As I said in Wizbang’s comments section, Booker Rising doesn’t exist to please white folks but to reach black folks, and put blackness in conservatism and centrism. The Conservative Brotherhood has helped us in achieving our goal. So we ain’t gonna apologize for our blog’s focus, or for our association with a group of black bloggers. If white folks don’t like it, then tough!



Uh, oh, there goes another progressive Blogad advertiser because we dared to post that..



WHY WE DON’T READ THE DRUDGE REPORT
(oh, no, we said the name!). This is typical of why. (Uh, oh, there goes another conservative Blogad advertiser because we dared to post that…) There are other superb news aggregators. In fact, we URGE readers to visit the new GREAT online tabloid Sploid which has meaty stories, attitude and is not only written to appeal to one ideology. If you visit the You-Know-Who-Report you can start weaning yourself off by visiting Sploid. And don’t forget the Dilby News Monitor and the Drudge Retort which also use the same format and are packed with great (and also more accurate) into.



WHAT HAPPENS WHEN SOME STUDENTS BRING BREATH MINTS TO SCHOOL THAT HAVE SOME CAFFEINE IN THEM? Because you have zero tolerance you throw all seven of them in jail. Isn’t it obvious? Zero Intelligence (which is NOT a blog named after Dennis Kucinich or Alan Keyes) has the details. A quote:



Holy overreaction, Batman! The school hospitalized 9 students for consuming considerably less caffeine than what you get from a can of soda. Then they realized they couldn’t go after the student for illegal drugs since both caffeine and peppermint are currently legal substances so they decided to categorize breath mints as look-alike drugs. No Altoids, Tic-Tacs or M&Ms allowed at Jackson Memorial! Better ban gum too – somebody might mistake it for Nicorette.



SPEAKING OF EDUCATION…ARE MIDDLE SCHOOLS BECOMING EXTINCT? The Education Wonks look at this serious issue.



RESTRAINT IS WISE and predictions can bite you in the you know what (hand, of course…)



A GREAT RESOURCE FOR READERS — AND BLOGGERS! Visit Mike’s Blog Roundup at the truly addicting site Crooks and Liars. Mike’s Blog Roundup has an incredible selection of links of all kinds (serious posts, funny posts, etc). AND they’re LOOKING FOR LINKS so if you’re a blogger (they don’t care what your views are) send them a link and a post. It’s a good way to get your stuff out there if you’re a blogger — and some great reading if you’re not. (And Crooks and Liars is a wonderful video blogging site).



THERE SEEMS TO BE A SLIGHT DISCREPANCY between what police said about some people did when they arrested them during the GOP convention in NYC — and with what the video camera shows.



ATTENTION Tony Blankley of the Washington Times
: Your constant use of the word “Nazi” to characterize people with whom you don’t agree — either directly or indirectly — is getting stale. So says Dave Pell. And we fully agree.



WHAT DID SPAIN SELL TO VENEZUELA?
Could it have included chemical agents and radioactive materials? Read Barcepundit.



THIS JUST IN!!!!!!!!!!! Visual proof of how President George Bush keeps Israelis Prime Minister Ariel Sharon in line.



THERE IS LOTS OF GOOD NEWS COMING OUT OF IRAQ
and Arthur Chrenkoff has it.



A MUST READ AS ALWAYS comes to us from Kevin Featherly, who this times steps back and ponders the Terry Schiavo case. An excerpt:



Perhaps you’d argue that Terri Schiavo was no vegetable. She could move at least in a limited way, she could breathe on her own. Videos appeared to show her smiling–though even the most generous would have to concede it was the same kind of smile radiated by the smallest of infants, the kind of smile that one can never be sure is a smile–but that parents always insist really is.



Now we wait for the results of the woman’s autopsy to tell us the definitive state of her brain injury–but of course, the doctors involved in this exercise will be labeled merchants in the culture of death if they do not declare her gray matter to have been functioning at the level of a physics professor’s.



My suspicion is that she was in the same shape as the wounded airman in John Irving’s novel “The World According to Garp”–a person able to respond at the most primitive levels to the most basic stimuli, but someone with no real mind, no real life. Maybe that is what constitutes, as some contended, a state of “minimal consciousness” as opposed to a vegetative state. I’m no doctor, I don’t know. Even the cleansed phrase “minimal consciousness” itself sounds to these ears like some sort of state of living death.



All I can say for certain about her state is that Terri Schiavo was living a kind of life that I would never want for myself.





A PROMINENT REPUBLICAN WARNS HIS OWN PARTY:
John Cole picks it up and analyzes it.




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SEAN PENN: Artist Or Idiot? The Superficial gives you its opinion…



CRY FOR ARGENTINA BUT NOT FOR JIMMY CARTER is basically what The Conservative Voice says about the bro-ha-ha over JC (Jimmy Carter, that is) not being officially invited along with former Presidents Bill Clinton and Poppy Bush to attend Pope John Paul II’s funeral. Read the whole post, but here’s part of it 4 U:



In consideration of all of the venom Carter has spewed at President Bush, why in the world did this popinjay even think he would be invited? Jimmy’s been a one-man-show, traveling the world vilifying President Bush to anyone who will listen. Carter’s problem is that, unlike the currently impotent Republican Congress, President Bush doesn’t cower at leftist denigrations. Beside, when it comes to Jimmy Carter, all one has to do is just say “No�.



So, I guess Jimmy will just have to be content watching the ceremonies on television. Too bad Al Gore’s network isn’t up and running, yet! Or, better yet, maybe he might watch with a friend.



Indeed, Carter was a problem for the first President Bush, for Bill Clinton and now for GWB. Why would they want him to join them unless they were falling apart (as the old joke goes)?



IS THE BUSH ADMINISTRATION PROTECTING OIL COMPANIES? Seeing the Forest says it is — and gives you the details.





SO HOW IS HOWARD DEAN DOING AS DNC CHAIR? Centerfield’s John Kay has an extensive analysis which notes Dean’s relatively low-profile…and why explains what it means. He’s a small part of his conclusion:



Nonetheless, it still looks to me like he still has has his demagogic addiction. Why else the “I hate Republicans,” and red meat he’s been throwing local crowds? Well, that has consequences. It means that, in a real way, he’s using the crowd. Not only is that wrong in and of itself, but I theorized that in the last campaign, guilt was causing Dean to change stances; it’s crystal clear that, for whatever reason, Dean completely lost message discipline in 2004. Right now, I think Dean is basically doing a good job, albeit with a nasty demagogic twinge. Unfortunately, past performance suggests that we should watch him for signs of losing message discipline and/or losing track of his anti-Rove strategies.





Yes, it’s truly sad the bitterness and ugliness that now characterizes the politicking of both parties. It’s as if people can’t differ on policy anymore without demonizing the other side. Hate seems to be a component in trying to activate the base. We can can blame this on the GOP and Democratic leaders…but also on the fact that people seem to NEED to see the other side as evil in this country before many of them will become active. Can this trend change? Possibly — if we get a leader (of either party) who tries to rise above it.





PRECISELY WHAT SHOULD THE DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION DO? Swamppundit has some detailed, specific ideas.



BORDER ISSUES ARE GRABBING BIG HEADLINES BUT DID YOU KNOW THAT COYOTES WHO SMUGGLE ILLEGAL ALIENS CHANGE TACTICS? They do, to co-opt the Border Patrol, reports VDARE.com.



Notes on Anti-Judicial Demagoguery from Mark Daniels. Read them in full. BRAVO.



IT’S BASEBALL SEASON and The New Editor has some predictions about the Chicago Cubs…



WELCOME NEWS FOR COLLEGE STUDENTS: Marjiuana is good for your arteries. Details at Outside The Beltway.



THEY’RE MAD IN FRANCE
…because the government is lowering flags at half-mast in honor of the Pope (was it because he didn’t speak French perfectly?)



THIS IS HORRIBLE, THIS IS HIDEOUS. View it IF YOU DARE!



HELP SUPPLY A CAPTION to this photo for The Kentucky Democrat.





THIS RAPPER GOING TO PRISON FOR MURDER IS REALLY MISUNDERSTOOD. I mean, really…





JAMES BOND IS BACK and guess who he’s going to be this time? Slings and Arrows tells you..



SO WHO IS THE SURE WINNER OF AMERICAN IDOL THIS YEAR? San Diego Union-Tribune columnist Bob Laurence (who TMV thinks is the best TV critic in the country) gives you his prediction here.



WHY DON’T PEOPLE (including TMV) LEAVE TOM DELAY ALONE? As the Left Coaster notes, he’s helped so many people.



HAY MUCHAS PROBLEMAS for the Bush’s administration’s nominee for UN Ambassador. Middle Earth Journal looks at it and gives you lots of links.





PC MANIA (or, rather insanity) IN NORWAY: Arthur Chrenkoff explains the lunacy.

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ARE IRAQI TERRORISTS LOOKING FOR AN EXIT STRATEGY? The always-thoughtful Donald Sensing thinks they are:



I posted late last month of the report that native Iraqi terrorists seem to be looking for an exit strategy from their insurgency (al Qaeda terrorists not so). The insurgents concerned are Baathist holdouts – dead enders,â€? as Donald Rumsfeld called them – and Saddam loyalists who fought the Americans and other coalition forces. Since the Jan. 30 elections in Iraq they have become increasingly persuaded that Baathism is not ever to return to Iraq and that loyalty to Saddam is a lost cause.



Sensing explores in detail the idea of reconciliation as an exit strategy. Actually, we’ll know more as time goes on. We DO seem to be seeing a lot fewer beheadings these days. Perhaps it’s a sign of the terrorists trying to “make nice…”



SOME THOUGHTS ON LIVES AND DEATHS from Jack Grant. TMV is a HUGE fan of Grant, a scientist who lives and works in France. And he is one of our Guest Bloggers. Grant doesn’t write in blogspeak; he thinks (and agonizes) before he writes. Read his WHOLE post, but here is a small excerpt 4 U:



For the culture in the United States, issues of life, and especially of death, are rarely dealt with in proportion to the whole, to the larger picture.



I attribute part of this inadequate and anti-survival response to the tendency of Hollywood to always provide us with happy endings, a feel-good termination of the stories they present so they can make more money. We want to go see something we can walk out of the theater feeling happy about, because learning things is too much work.



Our modern myths, our archetypal tales, they all now end happily. The boy gets the girl, the hero’s best friend isn’t really dead, the bad guys wear black so they are easy to recognize and in the end they never win.



Real life isn’t like that.Real stories often don’t have endings, they just fade into memory and eventual forgetfulness… Any endings that we do have are messy, inconclusive, with always many of those involved unsatisfied and angry if not completely unaccepting of the ultimate outcome, fighting beyond all reason.



A CONSERVATIVE BLOG NOW READ BY MILLIONS is the way you can now describe Wizbang, which has just gotten its 8th millionth reader. (We have a lot in common with Wizbang: TMV has gotten his 8th millionth spam..)



ANOTHER VIEW OF THE POPE:
We’ve given you our view of Pope John Paul II here and on Dean’s World (see below) and done our long roundup on Dean’s World (see below). But due to time constraints we weren’t able to include all points of view. One let-stand-back-and-look-at-this-again view comes from Running Scare’s Jazz Shaw, who looks at the Pope warts and all. A must read to balance some of the other posts.



THE NEW HIT MOVIE SIN CITY IS “PORNO,” writes Cobb — and he tells you why he loves it.



THE NEW HIT MOVIE SIN CITY IS EXCESSIVELY VIOLENT, contends Oxblog’s Josh Chafetz — and he tells you why he hates it.



THE NEW HIT MOVIE SIN CITY SOUNDS OUTRAGEOUS
and TMV can’t wait to see it (but how can another movie about Washington, DC be interesting?).



THE CITIZENS’ MINUTEMAN MOVEMENT IS CONTROVERSIAL ALONG THE U.S. MEXICAN BORDER AND ELSEWHERE
and Carpe Bonum gives you his detailed take on it.



WHO WILL BE THE NEXT POPE?
A detailed rundown on the possibilities can be read at A Little More To The Right.



GOOD VERSUS BAD BLOGGERS
is a loaded question and Crooks And Liars looks at the issue.



IF YOU’RE A CONSERVATIVE POLITICO YOU BETTER SUPPORT TOM DELAY OR ELSE is the message going out to Delay’s allies. Digby looks at that in a post that lambasts the GOP on other aspects as well. A small taste:



This has been brewing for quite some time. This undemocratic streak in the GOP waxes and wanes but it has been dramatically on the upswing for the last decade or so. But this time the radical Republicans are piping their revolution straight into homes and cars and offices all over this country and it’s starting to freak out the normal people.





MAKE PERFECT TACO TANGLES (no this is not a news story about the Minuteman group): The Ultimate Recipe is here.





A GREAT SERIES OF SHORT MOVIE REVIEWS
(from all eras) via Cutting to the Chase.



IRAQ REPORT: A comprehensive briefing of news and analysis by Andrew Olmsted at Winds of Change. MUST READING.



THERE’S ALSO GOOD NEWS FROM AFGHANISTAN and Arthur Chrenkoff has it.



SUPERBLOGSTER TO BEIRUT:
Michael Totten is heading towards Beirut, Lebanon for a few weeks with Spirit of America Founder Jim Hake. “On Tuesday we’re kicking off a new project to support the Lebanese people in their fight for independence. I’d love to give you the juicy details right now. But we aren’t quite there yet, so stay tuned.”



A NO-HOLDS-BARRED TAKE ON THE MICHAEL JACKSON TRIAL is a MUST READ from the almost always must-read The Talking Dog (who knows some things about law). A tiny taste:



I’m sure there are people out there who believe Jackson is innocent of the child molestation charges leveled against him. I tend to think he is guilty. In my opinion any grown man who has pajama parties with young children in a king sized bed, is a freak of nature and should spend the rest of his life in prison. Even if he is found not guilty…..



I remain perplexed: Jackson is a one-man franchise worth at least hundreds of millions of dollars, and I’m sure hundreds of people owe their livelihood to that franchise. After accusation after accusation against him of this nature, I just don’t understand how his handlers allowed him to jeopardize their investment in him, time after time. This is simply not a man that should ever be left alone with children (including his own). Even if completely innocent, he still opens himself up to shakedowns (which may nor may not be the current case).



We agree. (Our first post on our blog on Blogspot was on allegations about the King of Perps Pops).

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NBC’S Meet The Press Had A Round Table On Faith In America….and Atrios is right: what’s wrong with this picture?



THE ARAB LEAGUE HELD A SUMMIT AND DEMOCRACY AND POLITICAL REFORM POLLED BIG IN THE ARAB WORLD AS CONCERNS so the Arab League was receptive ot the concepts, right? NOT! Joseph Braude who has been writing some excellent stuff in The New Republic (one of TMV’s favorites — in fact, he subscribes to the the paper copy of this magazine, which his grandfather used to read regularly as well) does it again with a super analysis. Braude details how the Arab League shoved its political anchor back to 2002…with Hamas having more influence then ever.



THE FEC IS THINKING OF CLAMPING DOWN ON BLOGGERS and Sortapundit (based in England) has this idea to help U.S. bloggers out if there is a clampdown (so far he hasn’t had many takers).



YOU’VE HEARD ABOUT DOMESTIC VIOLENCE TOWARDS WOMEN BUT THERE’S ALSO DOMESTIC VIOLENCE TO MEN and a group that specializes in that is trying to raise money.



DEMOCRACY IS IN BLOOM
and people are falling all over themselves to find new terms for it (Cedar Revolution). Pennywit has some ideas.



IS THE RELIGIOUS RIGHT ACTING LIKE THE DEMOCRATS IN THE 2000 ELECTIONS? Non-Bill-Clinton Fan Gus Van Horn thinks so. Read his post in full (after you click on the link scroll down since he is remodelling). A small taste:



The Terri Schiavo case is the 2000 recount of the religious right. In 2000, Al Gore and the Democrats attempted to misuse the judicial branch to overturn an election. In 2005, the religious right is trying to misuse the executive and legislative branches to overturn a legal decision that has been effectively upheld by the very court the Republicans were thankful for in 2000. In the 2000 case and in this one (so far), a political faction lusting after power has been thwarted by the foresight of our Founding Fathers, who split the power of our government into three competing branches. Our government was designed to get in its own way for a very good reason: to prevent any one man from being able to accumulate (and abuse) too much power. A crucial part of how this works is that those in positions of power act responsibly, especially in the executive branch — the one that enforces the law.





THE BABY BOOMERS HAVE NOT BEEN AS GOOD AS THEY THINK THEY HAVE BEEN FOR OUR CULTURE according to university student Steven Donahue (one of MANY excellent and stylistically creative posts on his new site). A tiny execerpt 4 U:



Whatever. It seems like everything our generation attempts to accomplish, regardless of how screwed up the goals, will be compared to our parents. “You call this a protest? I remember during Vietnam…” It’s my opinion that a lot of the cultural “icons” of the late 50s, 60s, and 70s- the Beatles, Elvis, and the God-awful television shows like The Brady Bunch- would have been relegated to the place of trivia if not for the boom in population. Instead, the “country” grew up with these phenoms, and now I must suffer the consequences. Yes, I realize how important it was to you the first time you saw John and George and Paul and Ringo. And if they would have existed 10 years before they did, the Beatles would be nothing but a trivia question.



The problem is that the baby boom generation has emptied America of its culture. A case in point- the popularization of the Beatles, and Elvis, and other rock music led our musical culture down the wrong path. Until the 1950s, more meaningful, heartfelt, and talented forms of music were being produced, and they still retained popularity. Jazz was still alive, innovative, and largely possible. Composers still wrote tremendously popular pieces for orchestra (and NOT just film scores- although Prokofiev and Shostakovich did write scores for various Eisenstadt movies). But then the demographics turned. The new generation- and its inherent numerical importance- turned towards simple three minute songs about love and peace. The need for jazz and classical music to retain a popular appeal ended, and they were left to self-destruct in their own academic ramblings. Quick- what’s the last orchestral piece written that is guaranteed to fill even their relatively-small auditoriums? Shostakovich’s Cello Concerto (1959)? Strauss’ Four Last Songs (1948)?



Read it all and his other interesting posts. I’m always struck by the fact that there is so much TALENT on weblogs, and many of them don’t get the readership they deserve…but I’m quite sure Donahue’s will the more people read it (because they will visit it again and again).



THERE’S GOOD NEWS FROM IRAQ
and Arthur Chrenkoff has a ton of it.



A JAILED EDITOR IN YEMEN HAS BEEN SPRUNG PARTLY DUE TO THE EFFORTS OF BLOGS but really spearheaded by one very determined and dedicated blogger — Jane of Armies of Liberation.





SOLDIERS FACE A NEW PROBLEM: GETTING PROTECTION FROM CREDITORS
and the government is doing little to help them.





A BIG SUPREME COURT RULING IS COMING UP
on file swapping. (A ruling on wife swapping would make for a livelier post).



A MEDLY OF MADCAP PHOTO DEFINITIONS put together by Jeff at A Little More To The Right had TMV laughing loudly — and guiltily — out loud. This is a MUST READ…unless you are offended by some very adult humor. His site is a conservative site but he always maintains an irreverent sense of humor so its one of the most enjoyable sites to visit on the Internet. This list he put together is truly a howl and you will hate yourself for laughing at some of them. But you’ll also copy it and send the link onto all of your (non clergy and non minor) friends.



JOHN KERRY IS CAMPAIGNING AND ACTING AS IF HE NEVER LOST THE ELECTIONS and Blogs For Bush is amazed:



It was all just a fluke, you see? Kerry should be President; if only a few more of us hadn’t been so obtuse. I guess it hasn’t occured to him that his Global Test, unwillingness to reveal his military record, fake memories of Cambodia, northeastern liberal elitism and his insufferable personality might have had something to do with his loss; neither does it occur to him that he was beaten by a better man with a better plan.



Have at it, Kerry; we’ve beaten you once, and we can beat you again



.

They listed quite a few factors there…but we would say “insufferable personality” had something to do with it. We found very few people during the campaign who LIKED Kerry. He was the candidate by default…and then he had that albatross around his neck (named Bob Shrum).





EASTER MAKES YOU THINK and the thoughts can often be bittersweet.



THE DEATH OF A 6 YEAR OLD TAKEN OFF A MACHINE DUE TO A LAW SIGNED BY THEN GOVERNOR GEORGE BUSH
is looked at by Jerry Brown, a new blogger who has an unusual background (California governor, presidential candidate and presently Mayor of Oakland). He has a GREAT WEBSITE — good for its concise posts and is worth visiting for its content, not because he’s famous.



GEORGE BUSH WRESTLING WITH TERRI SCHIAVO (not literally) is explored by Kevin Drumm with some interesting links and tidbits.





MEXICAN SOCCER FANS HAVE A NEW TAUNT WHEN THEY WATCH THE US IN THE WORLD CUP QUALIFIER AND GUESS WHAT IT IS? “Osama.” Isn’t that sweet and respectful of our 3,000 dead?

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ADVICE TO THE GOP from the ever-knowing Bull Moose (one of our favorite weblogs) on Tom DeLay is a must read. A small taste:

The Moose begs the elephant to stick with their ethically-challenged Majority Leader. Although President Bush is the official chief Republican, Tom DeLay is a far better symbol of the party. He is the embodiment of the corrupt crony corporatism that is the modern GOP. DeLay is the poster boy for the sleazo-cons that rule the roost on Capitol Hill.

The New Republic notes that Tom DeLay has become the Republican version of former Democratic Majority Leader and Speaker Jim Wright. And it was Gingrich’s assault on Wright’s ethics that eventually led to the 1994 Republican revolution.

And he offers this final parting advice for DeLay:”…beware of the Ides of Rove. He might just bail out on you just like he did to your Old Trent. “Et tu, Karl?”

THE MOST POPULAR BOOK IN TURKEY is this…and it’s disturbing.



ONE OF THE U.S.’s KEY ALLIES REPORTEDLY HAS A MEDIA THAT SOME SAY IS NOT ONLY ‘UNDEMOCRATIC’ BUT PERHAPS ANTI-SEMETIC AS WELL…and the country is Japan. Rory O’Connor looks at these issues in detail.



IS THERE A RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN DDT AND MALARIA IN THE DEVELOPING WORLD? Oxblog examines the possibilities.



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GOOD NEWS FROM THE ISLAMIC WORLD:
Arthur Chrenkoff looks at demonstrations throughout the world in detail, focusing in particular on the Islamic world. A small taste of what he says:



I’m having a deja-vu to the 1980s, when as a young lad stuck on the wrong side of the Iron Curtain I watched with some bemusement the safe and comfortable citizens of Western democracies rallying for “peace” and protesting aggressive American policies, while around me people were risking if not life than certainly limb and their future marching for freedom, democracy and human rights.



While throughout major cities of Western world crowds….have turned up over the weekend for anti-democracy rallies to protest the second anniversary of the start of the liberation of Iraq, one region of the world remained strangely unaffected by the “anti-war” and “anti-occupation” fervor: the notorious “Arab street” has failed to join the “European street” and the “American street” in condemning yet again Chimpy Bushhitler and his imperialist policies….





SPEAKING OF WHICH this is Citizen Smash’s post on anti-war demonstrations. He organized a support-the-troops counterdemonstration in San Diego. TMV was guest blogging on Dean’s World so our post is there (see link on Smash’s site). The anti-war demonstration here in San Diego definitely was not huge.



THIS ONE’S ESPECIALLY FOR DEMOCRATS: Become Republican, offered by Skippy The Bush Kangaroo. Truly a scream with a lot of content to read. (Skippy by the way always has lots of interesting stuff. he writes in lower case but in quality he IS IN HIGHER CASE..)



THIS ONE’S ESPECIALLY FOR REPUBLICANS: Scrappleface’s satire “Right-to-Starve Added to Feminism’s Victories.” Scrappleface consistently writes satires that are on target, even if you don’t agree with all of them (TMV never agrees with everything anyone says and no one agrees all the time with TMV).





A VERY INTERESTING NEW SITE tries to bring Americans and Israeli’s together. It’s called A.I.S.H. Americans and Israelis – Strength and Honor. Chock full of info…worth visiting and bookmarking given the importance of the Middle East.



ON A RELATED NOTE check out Menorah News & Views which gets into some of the same issues.



DO YOU WANT TO KEEP UP ON IRAQ NEWS AND READ IRAQI BLOGGERS? If you do, Friends of Democracy is back. This was a must read in the run up to the elections and remains a must read if you want to truly stay informed about what’s going on over there.



AND IF YOU’RE MORE INTERESTED IN ISSUES CLOSE TO HOME SUCH AS URBAN SPRAWL you MUST visit Alex Marshall’s weblog which is chock full of info. Our whole existance is NOT national politics, the left, the right. And it’s true that all politics is local. We’ll be adding this one to our blogroll real soon and checking back often. Highly recommended!



SEZ WHO????? The New Editor takes LA. Times’ Michael Kinsley to task here for calling Maureen Dowd the most influential columnist of our time…and forgetting the late Chicago Columnist. Mike Royko. Indeed, I STRONGLY urge anyone interested in journalism, writing, blogging or just read absolutely perfect column writing to go to Amazon and buy the collections of Royko’s column (his book Boss on the late Chicago Mayor Daley would not be of as much interest since it is quite dated).



As a student I was an aspiring columnist and before I read Royko I used to write pieces that had a bit of his style. Then when I went to Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism for my masters I discovered him in the Chicago papers. I have worshipped him for years and upon his death collected books with his writings, which I read over and over, hoping to learn a bit more each time about how he produced such perfectly written pieces — the serious and hilarious. ORDER HIS COLLECTIONS NOW. Dowd has a bit of the Royko style…but Royko was perhaps the greatest columnist who ever lived. Period. Listen to Uncle Joe.



WHAT ABOUT THE ISSUE OF WOMEN COLUMNISTS ON NEWSPAPERS AND ON BLOGS? Should newspapers and blogs recuit women to ensure there is a woman’s voice? (That would also raise the question if it’s applied to a blog whether women bloggers should make sure there’s a man’s voice as well)? Rick Heller looks at this issue with his usual thoughtfulness.





THE ‘REAL’ STORY IN IRAQ is examined by Dead Armadillos. Tons of food for thought here..



A POTENT COMMERCIAL: The AARP’s commercial on what you do if you have a problem with the kitchen sink. See it on the always-lively video blogging site Crooks and Liars. This is a site you can get addicted to…



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Our occasional linkfest complete with TMV’s pithy comments. Links are NOT restricted to one viewpoint and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of The Moderate Voice.

LIBERAL AIR AMERICA, CONSERVATIVE TALK RADIO AND WHO LIBERALS SHOULD AND SHOULDN’T LISTEN TO are discussed in lively, fascinating, and as always thought provoking detail by the inimitable James Wolcott. READ IT ALL. His bottom line is that Air America should be careful not to take lousy advice. One notable section:



See, when rightwingers talk garbage and go over the top, they’re called “entertainers,” “showmen,” “deliberately outrageous.” Only liberal broadcasters are expected to bear the lamp of truth and foreswear the “anger-laced polemic” that offends Green’s tender buds. It’s similar to the crap handwringing by Nick Kristof that environmentalists need to be less alarmist and more nuanced, which is effectively a disarmament policy in the teeth of conservative Blitzkrieg tactics. The other side doesn’t want compromise or negotiation, it wants surrender and annihilation…



We have to say we disagree with his final comment (for some strange reason):”Whenever a Voice of Moderation addresses liberals, its sole purpose is to stomp out any real sign of life.”



SHOULD YOU BELIEVE POLLS THAT SAY SOCIAL SECURITY REFORM IS ON THE ROPES? Centerfield’s Tully says “beware.”


THERE’S A ZIPPY NEW CENTRIST BLOG CALLED THE MIGHTY MIDDLE
and it has a lot of meaty content. Read this where Michael Reynolds explains where he stands in the middle. A small taste:

Odds are you think I’m wrong about at least one issue. And I don’t want to shock you, but I probably am wrong about at least one issue. Unlike the ideologues of Left and Right, I don’t claim to have The One and Only Truth. You think I’m wrong, make your case. I love a good argument. I argue hard because that’s how you slice away the bullshit and get closer to the truth. You’re entitled to your opinion, but you’re not entitled to an unchallenged opinion.

There’s really only one requirement for membership in the Mighty Middle: you have to love truth more than certainty. Start there and you’ll find you can’t squeeze into either the Left or the Right wings.



Of course, TMV has been denounced (repeatedly) by people on the left and the right who feel they have a monopoly on truth.Warning to the Mighty Middle: get ready to get the “How can you call yourself ‘a moderate’?” emails and comments when people disagree with you. (I simply answer: “How’s this? I’m a moderate.”)




THE CONTROVERSY OVER GAY MARRIAGE IS JUST BEGINNING
in light of the California court ruling (see yesterday’s post). Steve Jones weighs in on it here — tracing the present crisis to a loosening up of divorce laws and arguing that gay marriage is indeed a threat to specific social values. A MUST READ since he minces no words in making his case.



ROSIE O’DONNELL HAS A BLOG and Jeff Jarvis has a screamingly funny post about it. He asks:”And some executive gave her a magazine to run?” Ah, yes, because she was famous, at her height of her popularity and she had a great image. Her abrupt decline from top popularity seems to parallel that of Roseanne Barr, who toppled (and believe me when she toppled it was felt) for other reasons. Jarvis’ post is required reading.



LIFE JUST WOULD NOT BE FUN WITHOUT READING ABOUT HOUSE MAJORITY LEADER TOM DELAY and the GOP’s political limbo dance to protect and defend him. So it stands to reason that a new blog has started that focuses on DeLay and demands the resignation of DeLay without delay (the latter must be his wife…).



SOME PREDICT THE UNIVERSITY OF COLORADO’S EMBATTLED PROFESSOR WARD CHURCHILL IS ON BORROWED TIME and we now KNOW he is after reading this extensive and copiously linked piece on him by Speculations’ Dana Lotzgesell. A ton of information.



IS HATE CRIME LEGISLATION A COP OUT? IS THIS ISSUE BEING HANDLED POORLY BY LIBERALS AND CONSERVATIVES? Gus Van Horn argues in detail that this yes and no on those questions in this thought provoking post. This is worth reading whether you’re on the left or right — and unless you read it all the way through you won’t get the full argument.





HATE CRIMES POST UPDATE: Jazz Shaw, after reading Gus Van Horn’s piece, gives you his own extensive, highly thoughtful take on this issue. CLICK HERE for a must read.



A NEW POLIITICAL PARTY IS TRYING TO MAKE ITS WAY ON THE SCENE: The Moderate Party (hey: I held one of those the other day. We ate Boston Market meatloaf and drank ginger ale..) which has a website. An interesting idea but, third parties simply have not gone too far in this country, except as devices that can influence the two parties in altering their course, or costing one major party the election. Another obstacle: the news media is really not too interested in moderates since the livelier quotes and stories come from the further ends of the political spectrum.



ARE YOU CONFUSED ABOUT THE NATIONAL MEDIA? Then read The Oxblog Guide To The National Media.



ARCTIC DRILLING WAS DEFENDED IN AN OP-ED PIECE IN THE NY TIMES BY INTERIOR SECRETARY GALE NORTON and Richard Schwartz dissects — and challenges — what she wrote. PS: If you hear a big noise its probably this guy rolling over in his grave..



AND SPEAKING OF THAT GUY (see link above) A BLOG INSPIRED BY HIM SAYS “GROW UP BLOGGERS.” Bull Moose, one of our favorite blogs, in a MUST READ post says the bloggers on the right and left have become predictable. He notes that “only hawks have won the Presidency whether they are Democrats or Republicans” and chastizes the left for dumping on Joe Lieberman. He adds:



The cyberspace lefties are the political progeny of those folks who screamed “Dump the Hump” and helped give us Richard Nixon. They are McGovernites with modems whose ancestors played into the hands of Tricky Dick. And now they are turning their backs in a juvenile pique on the President and one organization that helped win the White House twice in a row. Keep in mind that it was liberal over-reach and not the scorned Clintonian centrism that enabled the GOP to seize Congress in 1994. History did not begin with the emergence of the internet. Grow up bloggers.



He’s referring to Bill Clinton and the DLC, of course. And, yes, there seems to be a feeling on the part of some that it’s time to redefine the party because its centrists are somehow me-tooing the GOP. But the name of the game for Democrats who won office throughout the years was indeed aggregating interests — not aggravating interests.



SUGGESTION: If you need proof of all of the above, then read (and buy) John Avalon’s Independent Nation: How Centrists Can Change American Politics. TMV just finished it and will try to post a review on this site by Friday (if time permits).



IRAN WAS ROCKED BY ANTI-MULLAH UPRISINGS IN VARIOUS CITIES and Robert Hayes who used to live in Iran explains why it feels like the beginning of a true revolution.

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A belated (due to illness) collection of interesting links from all over Blogtopia. Links are NOT selected for ideological reasons and represent varying views. Views do not necessarily reflect the opinion of The Moderate Voice.




YOU CAN HELP FREE A JAILED EDITOR IN YEMEN: It doesn’t matter if you’re a Democrat, Republican, independent; a liberal, centrist or a moderate. CLICK HERE which will take you to Armies of Liberation and read and scroll down. It gives you the latest, the background, etc. You can read the petition letter and sign it by CLICKING HERE.



BLOGGERS ARE MOBILIZING against talk that the Federal Elections Commission could clamp down on blogs. There’s now an online petition they can sign. (If you’re a blogger, read it and I’m sure you will sign it. TMV did…twice! He messed up his own email address!)



Illinois Democratic Senator and rising star Barack Obama has blasted President Bush’s pitch to African Americans for his Social Security reform plan. The News Editor presens and analyzes it and believes Obama has failed a big test as a potential national figure. Still, our humble view is that if Obama had backed Bush’s plan he would no longer be a rising star in the Democratic party. Few Democrats are enamored with Bush’s proposal. So it would have been huge news if Obama had backed Bush.



IS THE PHILIPPINES GETTING READY TO PAY RANSOM TO TERRORISTS IN IRAQ TO FREE ANOTHER HOSTAGE? It certainly sounds like it.





A Multi-Party Blog? The Unpaid Punditry Corps is convinced this is the wave of the future.





MUSINGS ON TRANSFORMING SOCIAL SECURITY from Swamppundit.



IS THE NEWS MEDIA LOSING ITS SENSE OF PERSPECTIVE OVER THE MIDDLE EAST? David Adesnik has this great post noting the manic/depressant nature of the news media — with stark positive and negative judgements. The ones now, of course, are POSITIVE and President George Bush is getting lots of favorable ink and airtime. He notes that Jon Stewart is in awe of what’s going on there, then he writes:



If someone as charmingly vicious as Jon Stewart has lost his critical edge, then what hope is there for the average journalist? The moral of the story here is that the media’s short-term mindset and susceptibility to euphoria sometimes overpowers every other influence on its coverage, although I’m not sure we’ve seen anything like this since 1989.



Anyhow, there’s no need to worry. Things will eventually take a turn for the worse in the Middle East, at least for a little while, and the media will go back to being its old cynical. Of course, it is precisely the low expectations of that old cynical self that are responsible for the euphoria that emerges when world events take a surprising turn for the better.





A REASONED ARGUMENT IN FAVOR OF THE BANKRUPTCY BILL (which we oppose) comes from Rick Heller here. Read his post in its entirety. A tiny taste of it 4 U:



What has been astonishing is to see many right of center blogs (e.g. Instapundit, Redstate, Jane Galt ) come out against this bill. I see this as Yuppie Rage. The wealthy young libertarian entrepreneur is precisely the sort of person targeted by the legislation. Those on the right support the sanctity of contracts when they are owned money, but are less enthusiastic when they are the debtors. So yes, the left and right wing blogospheres have united against this bill. That doesn’t mean they’re right.





JUDGE LIKES SOUR APPLE: Apple has triumphed over bloggers, reports Jeff Jarvis. Read his entire post. A small portion:



So the judge decided that Apple can go ahead and subpoena the the sites that reported on its business to find out their sources. Which is to say that bloggers are not protected by California’s shield law. Which is to say that this judge just said that bloggers aren’t journalists. Which is to say that we just started a program of certifying official journalists in this country. Which is to say that we lose. Big time.



I agree with Jarvis. I also feel it may be a while before bloggers are afforded the same protections as journalists — who don’t have protections as strong today as they were 10 years ago. For one thing, blogging has indeed become a new wing of journalism but it’s too young to overcome institutional resistance to granting status on a plane with salaried journalism. Bloggers are going to have to battle every inch of the way.

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Our linkfest from weblogs of varying political views. Opinions expressed do not necessary reflect the always-perfect opinion of The Moderate Voice.




“That Son Of A Bitch” is another Stephen Green must read. This time on the Peter Arnett Playboy article alleging Sadaam’s late and unlamented son Uday was poised to replace his Dad as the Butcher of Baghdad leader of Iraq. Read the whole piece. Green did a LOT of research to tell you what Uday was REALLY LIKE (why didn’t Playboy hire Green instead of Arnett? Green’s long pieces on his blog are wonderful reads).



Legal Birth Definition Act Challenged By Pro-Abortion Groups in Michigan reads the headline of an intriguing post in The Principled Objection. A fascinating issue…



ONLINE CHATS WITH POLITICIANS CAN BE USEFUL OR WASTES OF TIME and the latter is apparently what happened with an online chat featuring Christie Whitman, as Centerfield reported here last week. But there is a FOLLOW UP TO THIS when Centerfield’s Matt sent his post and got this back…which showed Whitman & Co. responding admirably and quickly to criticism.



A GREAT NEW WEBSITE FOR FOREIGN NEWS: It’s going to be a MUST READ for us…every day. The site is Watching America, a treasure chest of foreign news stories translated into English. If you are interested in perceptions of the United States from abroad and in foreign policy this is REQUIRED READING. (We’re adding it to our blogroll under Other Voices).



The terrrorist group Hezbollah…The threat it poses to the U.S. Homeland..Iran’s support of it: A legitimate issue or a gear up for another military operation?
The inimitable James Wolcott has a prediction.



Breaking the fillbuster rule: An extensive argument for the GOP side is made at The Gantry Launchpad.





HOUSE SPEAKER TOM DELAY IS IN TROUBLE AGAIN and who better to fill you in and put it in perspective than Bull Moose — who notes that Delay’s home political base is showing signs of erosion.



THE SUPREME COURT AND THE TEN COMMANDMENTS: Attorney Ron Coleman gives you his take on it here.



ON THE IMPENDING GOVERNMENT CRACKDOWN ON BLOGS: We wrote about it here. And Michael Totten has a MUST READ on the subject here. A tiny taste of it 4 U:



This has united the blogosphere. Everyone from Atrios and Daily Kos to Charles Johnson and Ace of Spades is rightly bitching about it…..



Say what you will. Oh, now you’re against it when it threatens you personally. Well, yeah. I don’t give tens of thousands of dollars to senators so I can buy access and the expectation of getting my phone calls returned. I’m just a guy with a modem and an opinion…



So I don’t know. I still kinda like the idea of campaign finance reform. But that doesn’t change the fact that McCain/Feingold needs to be sunk. It goes way too far, and I’ll be damned if the federal government tells me what I can and can’t write on this blog. This is not Iran, and this is not Syria.



A-m-e-n.



LEFT AND RIGHT UNITY OVER GENOCIDE IN THE SUDAN has led to Coalition for Darfur. This shows that partisanship (which truly seems to be veering into plain, old fashioned gut hatred with each passing day) can be left at the doorstep on issues involving sheer humanity. To bloggers they have this request:”All we ask is that you join us in raising awareness of the crisis in Darfur by, once a week, posting a short post on the topic (one that we will provide) on your blog.” They’re not only trying to raise awareness, but they seek to raise money for Save The Children to help the innocents who are being robbed of a childhood as they’re thrust into a world of terror and violence.



A 25th Wedding Anniversary And A Wife Very Sick With A Flu: how would you view it? Half-empty, or half full? Donald Sensing, in a must-read post, views it as FULL. An excerpt:



So for our 25th anniversary I took her some soup and gave her some medicine and prayed for her health. We’re long past the time when we’re disappointed we cannot “celebrate” the night by going to a nice restaurant and exchanging gifts and having private times. After 25 years, to minister to her in sickness, not just health, is a form of celebration. She is sleeping now. Simply to be there and give her care is, somehow, a fitting commemoration of this Silver Anniversary. For really, all we can give one another is our love and charity, and what better time than this day?





A-m-e-n.

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PARTISAN, POLITICAL BLOGOSPHERE RANKINGS ranked by My DD.



IS THE BIN LADEN NAME REALLY PROTECTED AS A BRAND NAME? Attorney Ronald Coleman gives you the REAL legal situation under U.S. law, if you’re one of those hoping to use the attractive Bin Laden name to market your product.



WILL THE NEWSPAPER INDUSTRY DIE WITHIN 20 YEARS? John Pike looks at the debate over the health of the newspaper industry. PERSONAL NOTE: In 1980 a top academic in L.A. told me I was a “dinosaur” because I worked for a newspaper and by the year 2000 newspapers would be gone and replaced by computers. It hasn’t happened yet. My own view is that an evolution will continue. Newspapers on newsprint and reporters who get people riled up will still be here 20 years from now.



ANN COULTER CALLS HELEN THOMAS AN ‘OLD ARAB’ and the inimitable James Wolcott has a few choice words about that.





THOSE WONDERFUL REGIONAL SOFT DRINKS
: Backcountry Conservative looks at some of them, including my FAVORITE: Royal Crown Cola. A delicious read.



HOW WELL DOES VLADIMIR PUT UNDERSTAND THE UNITED STATES? Not too well, as this Balloon Juice post notes.



THEN HOW WELL DID BUSH DO AT THE SUMMIT WITH PUTIN? Oxblog’s David Adesnik looks at this question in detail and concludes Bush approached Putin with realism and actually did quite well. Read the post in full. One quote:



You might say the glass is half full. Putin’s hedges are not exactly what I want to hear. Yet whereas Third World dictators have a long history of insisting that their dictatorship is actually a new form of democracy, Putin has abandoned this pledge and acknowledged that democracy has a universal essence. What matters isn’t whether Putin really believes this. What matters is that he told it to the President of the United States, who will be very angry if Putin goes back on his word.





SOME VIETNAMESE CITIZENS ARE SUING AMERICAN CHEMICAL COMPANIES OVER AGENT ORANGE reports Vietpundit, who gives you his take on this.



A CRISIS FACING CATHOLIC SCHOOLS: A slew are closing in the Chicago area.



HOW STRONG IS GEORGE BUSH’S REPUBLICAN SUPPORT? If you don’t believe it’s strong, read this.



DEATH OF AN EDITOR: (ANOTHER) MUST READ from Jeff Jarvis who recounts the death of Former Time Inc. Editor-in-Chief Henry Grunwald. Jarvis recounts his own history of his dealings with Grunwald, including how a review Jarvis wrote for People magazine was tinkered with. Jarvi’s original must be read to fully appreciate his tribute to a man he calls “one of the last of the scary editors.”





THE GOP’S PROPOSED MEDICARE CUTS
could spark backlash with impacts such as this.



MORE QUESTIONS ABOUT THE EFFICACY OF VACCINATIONS
are raised by Michelle Malkin. This time regarding school kids.



WHICH IS THE PROPER TERM? CHICANO OR MEXICAN AMERICAN? Blex sorts it out and gives you his view.



GANNONGATE RAISES QUESTIONS THOSE PRESSING THE ISSUES MIGHT NOT INTEND TO RAISE
writes The Radical Centrist in a long piece.



BACKLASH OVER THE USE OF EMINENT DOMAIN TO SEIZE PRIVATE PROPERTY IN THE NAME OF ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT CONTINUES and the issue is looked at it in great detail at Wizbang.



THE PROPOSED EUROPEAN UNION FLAG: What do YOU think this looks like?

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AS THE NEWS MEDIA AND BLOGS GET READY FOR THE TRIAL OF THE KING OF PERPS POP ON CHILD MOLESTATION CHARGES some note that the jury has no African Americans on it. James Joyner runs a photo of Jackson and writes:”Of course, as the accompanying photo illustrates…….there’s no blacks on trial, either.”





THE THE JURY NOT CONTAINING ANY BLACKS HAS RAISED SOME EYEBROWS, for instance, La Shawn Barber’s: “What is that about? I guess it doesn’t matter. No one really cares…right? It’s odd. Just like the pasty-face Michael Jackson….Ha! This is the jury O.J. Simpson should’ve had. Instead of playing golf and searching for the “real killer,” he’d be pushing up daisies right now. By the way, did I tell you that I detest the term “African American?”



WHAT KIND OF TRAUMA DOES SOMEONE GO THROUGH WHEN THEY ARE HIT BY A DRUNKEN DRIVER? This is a MUST READ by David Rublin, who says it all. (TMV submitted it to the Watcher of Weason’s Council weekly post contest because he thought it was superb). MAD members need to download this one.





THE DEMOCRATS SHOULD FOCUS ON NEO LABOR writes the new blog Speculations. It’s a lengthy and highly thoughtful piece. A small excerpt (READ IT ALL):



The Democratic party is a three-legged stool, the traditional legs of which are radicalism, liberalism, and labor. Each of these separate traditions has a legitimacy of its own. It is time to eschew the earlier two, and embrace the later. Voters who would like to vote Democratic, otherwise, are put off with much of the liberal agenda. …..



The Democratic party does not need big labor like it used to. This is for the same reason that they don’t need rich donors as much, either. The answer, of course is the Internet. Unheard of amounts of money can be raised fairly easily via the Internet. The labor that the Democrats should try to attract is this neo-Labor discussed above. Don’t run off NEA and the AFL-CIO, but don’t let them be so powerful within the party.



IS HILLARY CLINTON ANOTHER POLITICAL HACK? Ron Beasley thinks so and tells you exactly why.



CALIFORNIA-TEXAS REDISTRICTING remains a hot topic among centrists, who are trying to come up with a solution everyone can live with and consider fair. Read Rick Heller and see.



THE KOUFAX AWARDS FOR THE BEST BLOGS ON THE LEFT ARE OUT and here’s the list.



LEBANON UPDATE: You can find a superb, detailed on here by Arthur Chrenkoff.



WAS THERE FOUL PLAY IN THE RECENT MONSTER FIRE OF A DOWNTOWN MADRID HIGH RISE? AND WHO COULD HAVE GONE IT? Read Barcepundit.



GIMME A BREAK DEPARTMENT: So this lady is a nun??



SO IS IT TIME for a younger Ross Perot to spring up?



ON THE NEED FOR LEFT-RIGHT CIVILITY AMONG BLOGS: The blog President Boxer has this to say.



A WONDERWOMAN MOVIE IS BEING DEVELOPED
but it seems as if they’re torn between an older actress and a younger one.



CHINA-U.S. RELATIONS AND WHAT PRIORITY THE U.S. SHOULD GIVE TO CHINA is the focus of a long, thoughtful post on DemRealists a self-admitted neocon site.

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SO HOW DID ALL OF THE BOYCOTTS OF FRANCE GO? Not too well, according to Wampum blog.



THE TOUCHY ISSUE OF REDISTRICTING from a Centrist position.



BLOGS VERSUS MAINSTREAM MEDIA: Is it censored thought versus uncensored thought? Read this.



DOES PRESIDENT BUSH’S ‘CHARM OFFENSIVE’ IN EUROPE LACK CHARM DUE TO HIS MAIN MESSAGE? Dave Pell raises the issue (using GWB quotes).



SO IS THIS WATERGATE’S FAMOUS DEEP THROAT? Speculation is increasing that it’s THIS GUY.



LIBERTARIAN GIRL IS NOW LIBERTARIAN MAN OF MYSTERY and explains some more of his classic hoax (she was a he). Frankly, we found LG a great blog with compelling reading because of its blunt stands, which we often disagreed with. Libertarian MoM is equally fun to read.



THE CONNECTIONS BETWEEN INDICTED STUDENT ACCUSED OF PLOTTING TO KILL PRESIDENT BUSH AND THE SAUDI ARABIAN GOVERNMENT GROW DEEPER: Read The Jawa Report’s post, which has much ORIGINAL reporting (which you don’t often see on blogs)





BUSH PISSES SOME FOLKS OFF IN EUROPE — and now some of them are pissing him off.





–TO THOSE WHO LIKEN GEORGE BUSH TO MICHAEL MOORE
Vietpundit disagrees and has an astute observation on the left and right nowadays.



TALENT TRUMPS ALL: Actor Whil Wheaton, who has a superb non-political blog (one of the best on the Internet), is going to be appearing on CSI and writes about part of his experience here.. Wheaton is an example of a very creative person who had such talent within that no kind of discouragement could get him down — and he has triumphed in his writing and now seems solidly back in action again as an actor.



–THE CONTROVERSY OVER EMINENT DOMAIN IN SEIZING LANDS: Is government abusing the practice?





–RUSSIA IS MOVING SWIFTLY TO CHECK THE UNITED STATES, writes Oldman at The Blogging of America. A small taste of it: “Four years after the inauguration of the Bush 43 Administration I do not think that it is too soon now to categorize their foreign policy as catastrophic failure. They took the most well regarded and respected nation on the face of the earth and within the span of one Presidency turned it into a pariah nation with antagonistic alliances proliferating against its interests right and left. But the good news is that Libya likes us now and the Taliban aren’t in charge of north Afghanistan and Saddam is in the clink.”



–IF THEY SELL YOU A LOTTERY TICKET IN MICHIGAN the prize may already have been awarded.

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ANOTHER TAKE ON THE LATE HUNTER THOMPSON, who committed suicide. Amrican Digest offers this fascinating personal accotun of a drunk Thompson, stripped of all the nicities people insist on heaping on the dead.





YET ANOTHER TAKE ON THOMPSON, this one much more affectionate, from Tom Watson. His post has a lot of links to different blogs’ takes on it (but not ours, which you can find here.)



WAS GEORGE BUSH USING THE RELIGIOUS RIGHT? John Pike, pointing to the secretly taped Bush conversations run by the New York times this week, make a strong case that he is.





REMEMBER THE BOY WHO ALLEGEDLY DIED DUE TO ISRAELI GUNFIRE? It showed a Palestinian boy and his dad caught in a crossfire and it looked as if the boy was shot and killed. It’s apparently not true — and may have just been carefully edited propaganda. Betsy Newmark has the details.






IGNORING GEORGE WASHINGTON: PSoTD gives evidence of how popular culture is trumping history in school classrooms.




CBS IS PLANNING A TRIBUTE TO DAN RATHER when he moves to another frequency (off the CBS Evening News). RatherBiased.com has the details, which suggest it’ll be more of a celebration of DR than a piece that’ll explore the controversies he has been involved in. On the other hand, perhaps they’ll surprise everyone…



The Power and Politics of Blogs are explored by Homeland Security Policy Institute group. FOOTNOTE: As we’ve said here we do NOT believe blogs will ever displace the mainstream media because bloggers rely on news reports for most of their posts and analysis. A small handful do original reporting. But Homeland Security Policy Institute makes some good points.



A NEWSPAPER CONTINUES TO SHOOT ITSELF IN ITS FOOT
and the paper is Tulsa World which has already threatened one blogger with legal action — and now has hassled Balloon Juice. Don’t these cretins realize that their paper is limited to one regional area and that bloggers can actually help them expand their readership? Clearly Apparently they have a management team stuck in mid-20th Century thinking (oops! Will I get a letter from a lawyer? Notice I added a strike through…)



IS GWB SHOWING SIGNS THAT HE IS FREER TO MOVE NOW THAT HE DOESN’T HAVE TO RUN FOR RE-ELECTION? The Talking Dog thinks so and tells you why.



ARE OP-ED PAGES DOMINATED BY MEN? A debate is swirling around this issue. Read La Shawn Barber.



IT MUST BE FATE DEPARTMENT:
Look at this on Latino Pundit.





DO FOR YOUR COUNTRY WHAT YOUR GOVERNMENT DOES TO YOU DEPARTMENT:
Hong Kong’s new Chief Executive wants each family to have at least three kids to offset the delining birthrate.



FALLING THROUGH THE SOCIAL WORKERS’ CRACKS: Read this one from ISOU.




THERE IS A MOVEMENT TO ORGANIZE CENTRISTS and you can read about it at Centerfield.



BUT DID THEY FIND ALAN KEYES? Check here.





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WILL THERE BE A BIG STORY TODAY ON THE JEFF GANNON CONTROVERSY? Americablog is hinting something VERY BIG is coming. First they show you this picture. And then there’s this cryptic post:”I’m wrapping it up now. It’s big. Very big. I’ve just contacted him for comment. If he now decides to go public to pre-empt my story, well, you heard it here first. Stay tuned. PS: Just so the bad guys out there know, several of my friends already have copies of my files. I’m just saying…”



SHOO YOU PHOTOGRAPHERS!!!! The city of Chicago is chasing photogs away from a landmark, Andrew Quinn reports.



SAUDI ARABIA’S ELECTIONS DIDN’T TURN OUT THE WAY THE COUNTRY’S ELITES WANTED since Islamic clerics won in a key part of the country. But the results are a mixed bag. Daniel Drezner tells you why.



IS HOWARD DEAN A GOOD MOVE FOR THE DEMOCRATS? Oxblog’s Josh Chafetz writes:”Right now, the DNC desperately needs to find a message that appeals to people who aren’t dyed-in-the-wool Democrats. The Democrats need to reach out, not look in. Dean proved remarkably good at looking in and remarkably poor at reaching out. So, naturally, Dean is taking over the DNC. Sigh.”



BUSH GETS ‘DISSED’ BIGTIME BY A CONSERVATIVE REPUBLICAN
who served in Reagan’s cabinet, on the editorial board of the Wall Street Journal and on the National Review. Isn’t calling GWB a “buffoon” a sign that Bush’s conservative flank is weaker than some think?



ARE LIBERALS SCARING AWAY MODERATES DUE TO A SOUR ATTITUDE? The inimitable James Wolcott thinks the tide has turned — and that Republicans now look sour-pussed while hyping the White House’s Social Security reform. Read it in full (Wolcott must be read in full to be enjoyed). A small part:”Dems should resist the temptation to be statesmenlike and bail out Bush should he stumble, the way they shamefully rescued Reagan in his second term. Bipartisanship has gotten Democrats nowhere for four years, has earned them nothing more than a fine spittle of contempt falling like a constant drizzle. They should let a smile be their umbrella as they enjoy the spectacle of House and Senate Republicans promoting Social Security privatization as if they’d been ordered by their commander in chief to suck lemons.”



THERE IS GOOD NEWS FROM IRAQ and Arthur Chrenkoff (as usual) has a ton of it.



ANOTHER REFUGEE TO POWERBLOGS: We see that The Conservative Philosopher has also moved to our new home, Powerblogs (and we are VERY HAPPY HERE). This relatively new blog has a post here on why Conservatives vote Republican. And John Pike expands on it here.



A MAJOR HIGHRISE DESTROYED BY FIRE IN DOWNTOWN MADRID is covered in detail by Barcepundit.



A FORMER DNC PRESS SECRETARY CALLS FOR THE DEMOCRATS TO RETURN TO THEIR JEFFERSONIAN ROOTS: The Maryland Moderate has the details.



A REPUBLICAN MEMBER OF CONGRESS IS PROVIING TO BE A SKILLED DEALMAKER ON SOCIAL SECURITY:
Details at Centerfield.



THERE’S A NEW TREND IN NEW YORK: Designer sex toys sold in posh stores on Fifth Avenue.



ASSISTED SUICIDES: Here is a huge argument against them.



A NEW WEBMAGAZINE DEBUTS TODAY THAT WILL ATTEMPT TO BRING ALL PARTIES AND IDEOLOGIES TOGETHER: It’s called Blue and Red and you can see the first issue here. It’s going to have a slew of columns (we’ll do one) and other features. It’s the brainchild of Larimie Taylor who created the highly acclaimed issue-oriented debating blog Iron Blog.



ARE REPUBLICANS MAKING A BIG MISTAKE CHORTLING AT THE SELECTION OF HOWARD DEAN AS DNC CHAIR? Scott Sheilds thinks so and he explains why.





NPR VERSUS CONSERVATIVE TALK RADIO: Parableman usually prefers NPR due to more content but he notes in a long, thoughtful post how NPR shoots itself in the foot.





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U.S. Objects to inclusion of Cuba and Zimbabwe on Key UN Human Rights Panel and The Talking Dog (one of our favorite writers due to his wit) has some things to say about that.



LIBERALS, LEFTISTS AND THE IRAQ WAR: Former military man turned pastor Donald Sensing has an extensive and detailed analysis arguing his contention that there is a difference between liberals and the left. He writes:” It is not a liberal’s devotion to democracy at home that is the issue. It is their indifference to it in Iraq…But my charge stands and I make it more strongly now than before: The Left is anti-American and is anti-democratic.” Read the whole thing because its extensive.



FORMER NEW JERSEY GOVERNOR CHRISTIE WHITMAN’S APPEARANCE AT HAVARD: Centerfield’s Rick Heller gives a FULL account so read it all. A tiny tidbit:



Former New Jersey Gov. Christie Todd Whitman criticized “social fundamentalists” who exert undue influence over the Republican Party in a talk at Harvard on January 31. According to Whitman, it doesn’t matter if you have a strong record in cutting taxes or criminal justice. If you’re not with them on the social issues, “you’re not a good Republican.”



Asked why she didn’t leave the Republican Party and become a Democrat, Whitman answered that the Democratic Party was suffering from the same ills as the Republican Party. Instead of widening their base, the trend in both parties is to “harden your base” by appealing to divisive emotional issues. Furthermore, she still feels the GOP is the party that values the individual, while the Democrats see government as the chief avenue to solve problems. Asked about a possible third party, Whitman answered that the chances for a successful third party are worse now than ever, given how important money and a party apparatus are to a campaign.



Did President Bush Misdiagnose Al Qaeda? Pat Buchanan thinks he did and Middle Earth Journal analyzes the criticism.



AND DID BILL O’REILLY INSPIRE A LAW AND ORDER SCRIPT? Decide for yourself.



SHOULD THERE BE HIV TESTS FOR EVERYONE? Tales of a Wandering Mind explores the issue.



ARE SOME REPUBLICANS REBELLING AGAINST THE WHITE HOUSE AND ARE THE DEMOCRATS GIVING KARL ROVE AN EARLY CHRISTMAS GIFT? Bull Moose analyzes GOP backlash against GWB’s expansion of government and writes this about the upcoming coronation of John Dean as DNC chair:



And just in the nick of time, the donkey may be riding to the elephant’s rescue. Some of the blogosphere lefties might not want to hear it, but this weekend the DNC will deliver a gift-wrapped office warming present to the new White House Deputy Chief of Staff . Just take a sampling of what is in that oppo-file that is undoubtedly sitting on his West Wing desk and is contained in today’s Washington Times (read the post to see what it says).BR />



EASON JORDAN’S VIDEOTAPE: Efforts like this continue to get the tape released so people can find out once and for all what the CNN bigwig did or didn’t say.





Dershowiz Takes On The Pro-Islamists At Columbia University: Winds of Change recounts what happened and adds a good point about tenure:”There are problems with our tenure system, but the fact that Dershowitz can travel to Columbia and Speak Truth to Power(ful faculty) illustrates why academic freedom is so important. On the other hand, it has to be used or in effect faculty throw it away…”


A CONTROVERSY OVER ALLEGATIONS THAT AMERICANS ARE REMOVING ORGANS FROM MUSLIM BODIES IS SWIRLING IN THE ARAB WORLD. American officials deny it. Some Arabs accusing wonder aloud whether Americans and — of course — the “Jewish neocons” are directing it. Read Gringoman for details.



A 64-Year-Old Woman Is Hit With A Bottle On Her Head…and it saved her life.



BANGLADESH’S IMAGE PROBLEM: Is it correct to look at it, as some Westerners have, as a potential homeland for the birth of the next Islamic revolution? The Third World View (a Bangladeshi blog) gives an answer.



WHO SHOULD YOU DECIDE TO MARRY? Marriage in the eyes of a small child.

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EUROPE IS UPSET ABOUT SPAIN’S PLAN TO OFFER AMNESTY TO ILLEGAL ALIENS: Read Barcepundit for details.



SAY IT’S NOT TRUE!!
Fidel Castro has banned smoking? (What would HISTORY be without cigars? Just think: Castro without a cigar…Clinton without…I WON’T GO THERE!)



TALK ABOUT A SHORT LIVED BLOG THAT SOARED LIKE A STAR: The Diplomad — a pro-GOP blog supposedly written by diplomats who used it as a way to anonymously express their views without having to be politically correct — is turning in its visas and going home. Read the whole post, but here’s a tidbit:” Lest any of you think so, we have not been threatened or shut down; the State Department goons are not knocking at the door. It’s just time to do something else… We’ve heard that our Republican cousins over at USAID might be starting a blog, too, so keep an out eye for it.”



IS GEORGE BUSH STILL A “COMPASSIONATE CONSERVATIVE?” Here’s one view.



A CHANGING CLIMATE IN IRAQ? INDC Journal gives you several reasons why.



IF HE CONTINUES THIS WAY IT WON’T FLY: Daily Kos has this quote of President Bush talking about Social Security. He sounds just like Ted Kennedy did years ago when Roger Mudd asked him why he wanted to be president, TK couldn’t give a coherent answer, and his candidacy was effectively over. (But Bush’s handlers, talk radio and TV ads will make up for what seems to be either a lack of sleep or not doing his homework).



DO YOU PUKE EASILY?
If you do, then don’t read this incredible excerpt of the you-know-what-kissing comments by a U.S. officials to the “No Jews” allowed anti-terrorism conference in Saudi Arabia. It’s clear we have one set of no-compromise standards for the rest of the world, and one for the Saudis.



SOME INTERESTING THOUGHTS ON THE SUPERBOWL can be found here.



AND SOME MORE SUPERBOWL THOUGHTS come via Citizen Smash.



THERE ARE A SLEW OF ISSUES RAISED BY THE CONTROVERSY SWIRLING AROUND PROFESSOR WARD CHURCHILL and the “militant moderate” blog Tutakai tackles them thoughtfully.



WARD CHURCHILL, MICHAEL MEDVED AND THE SUPERBOWL HALFTIME SHOW are all tied together by the inimitable James Wolcott who must be read in full (people love him or hate him depending on where they are politically — but we consider him above all a true word artist). A tiny snippet 4 U:



If the cultural-values conservatives ever succeed in cleaning up culture, they won’t know what to do with themselves since it was never culture they were interested in anyway. The cultural conservatives of decades past actually read T. S. Eliot, Irving Babbitt, F. R. Leavis, and other custodians of tradition. Today’s cult-cons scrutinize cartoons for butt-cracks and tabulate penis references in sitcoms, and then wonder why no one wants to sit next to them in the sauna.






IS GWB BULLDOZING VOTERS ON SOCIAL SECURITY? Centerfield’s Rick Heller thinks so. Read it all, but here’s a small part:



The man is a bulldozer–which is not always a bad thing. One he gets an idea into his head, he sticks with it. In fact, he has a history of fixing on a policy, and shifting justifications for it as circumstances change. That was true of the tax cuts he advocated in 2000, and true of the Iraq War.



Private accounts may conceivably help younger workers, but the slight margin between debt borrowing and equity investing cannot solve the long-term problem in social security. Let’s not be bulldozed into a solution that’s only a facade.





A NEW GENDER NEUTRAL VERSION OF THE BIBLE IS COMING OUT and Daweatherman has the details (note that this site doesn’t have permalinks but you should see this entry fairly high up).



WHAT’S AT STAKE IN TOGOLAND? Digital Dissent’s Didsbury fills you in. A small portion:



Democracy itself cannot bring prosperity, but tyranny will certainly postpone it. And such is the stark choice Africa faces. Will its leaders go the way of the old crocodile, devouring political enemies and instilling fear in its populace, or will they like the chameleon adapt themselves to the realities of their new surroundings, the global village of the 21st century? For now, all eyes are on Togo. May the son’s wisdom exceed that of the father.





TORTURE AND HOMESCHOOLING:
Get an eyefull (and brainfull) from The Glittering Eye on this issue touching on the Florida couple who turned kids into clones of Aushwitz prisoners.

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ARE HOUSE GOPERS THE EPITOME OF HYPOCRISY?
That’s what Bull Moose, a moderate Democrat weblog suggests in the increasingly strange and murky case of the GOP House apparatus protecting House bigwig Tom DeLay. Here’s part of what Bull Moose says, noting the removal of a DeLay critic by GOP House honchos and insertion of DeLay-friendly politicos who can be counted on to look the other way:

The very same chamber where the President eloquently hailed the virtues of freedom was the site where Republicans were replacing the rule of law with the rule of the Bugman! And those very brave Republicans had the audacity to display their ink stained fingers as if they had risked all to defend the virtues of democracy! Why these courageous warriors would walk across a field of land mines to get a campaign check from a K Street lobbyist.

Have they no shame? In addition to the Hefley purge, the democracy-loving Delayicans put two cronies of their Majority Leader on the Ethics Committee…It would be ironic indeed if the future Iraqi parliament is less corrupt than our GOP dominated crony operated House of Representatives. And this latest act does give new meaning to the term "lower chamber."

HARRY SMITH IS ANGRY THAT DAN RATHER KEPT HIS JOB according to RatherBiased.com

SOME OF THE MOST COMPREHENSIVE NEWS ON IRAQ can still be found on the great new blog Friends of Democracy, which was created to be a hub for Iraqi election coverage. It’s still going strong and is worth regular visits.

MORE ON THE STATE OF THE UNION FROM GREG PIPER (who filled in so well for us last week). Our post last night was limited (at  25 cents per minute at Kinko’s it would have to be). But Greg has some interesting links plus an extensive section of the reaction of him and his friends when they saw the speech:

Excellent speech. I was very impressed – even the parts considered polarizing, such as Social Security, came across well-argued, philosophically if not practically. Andrew and I couldn’t get over how boring Senator Harry Reid’s response was – he agreed with my observation that Reid looks like a Pixar animation. Our entire table – Andrew, me, Jen and her coworkers – laughed when Reid told an anecdote that ended with "I want to be just like you, Senator Reid." That must be some pathetic kid. Reid reminds me of Cary Elwes’ good-natured pansy in "Liar Liar."

Andrew and I agreed that Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi was hot, but the botox in her lip was painfully obvious. The unsightly lip crinkle whenever she formed a certain sound with her mouth became like a 10-car pileup – terrible to observe and impossible to ignore. Almost any response by the opposition party, though, is bound to disappoint. Its main purpose is entertainment for supporters of the majority. So in that regard it succeeded wildly.

A TABLOID COMMITS AN OUTRAGE:  AZ Perspective And Junk details the strange — and disgraceful — tale of how Weekly News of The World named number six in a list of the Worlds 10 Ugliest People. The person named is a Phoenix Police Officer who was badly burned in an auto accident in the line of duty. This shows that as mainstream news media standards have plummeted so have — believe it or not — tabloid news standards. Read the above link and this too which gives you the full story about this courageous man. MUST READING.

CHRIS MATTHEWS MAKES AN ASSUMPTION ABOUT THE MOVING STATE OF THE UNION HUG AND IS WRONG: Michelle Malkin has the details.

KIDS PLEASE DO NOT READ THIS ITEM, OK? GO TO ANOTHER PAGETHERE IS A HUGE CONTROVERSY IN ENGLAND OVER A  DRAWING SHOWING A…..frog penis.

HOW CAN YOU POSSIBLY SOLVE THE MULTIPLE DILEMMAS OF CAMPAIGN FINANCE REFORM? Swamp Pundit makes a highly thoughtful stab at it. MUST READING.

MAKE SURE YOU CHECK OUT THIS NEW BLOG: Vietpundit. (We’re adding it to our blogroll under OTHER VOICES).

MORE ON THE DEMOCRATS DILEMMA: We outlined our take on it here. Ezra Klein (writing on his sparkling new, highly lively blog) has another view. Read it in full but here’s a small taste:

Republicans aren’t winning because of their economic ideas, they’re winning because of their foreign policy image. Of the last four presidential elections, they’ve received a majority (or plurality) of votes in exactly one, not coincidentally the only that focused on foreign policy since the close of the Cold War….Democrats overwhelmingly won in the domestic category: voters concentrating on the economy and jobs went for us 80-18%, voters concentrating on health care chose us 77-23%, voters concentrating on education chose us and, finally, the 5% of voters choosing on taxes went for Bush. So the voters who are, to use QandO’s word, motivated by domestic ideas went Democrat.

The rest of this you already know. Bush won on terrorism and "moral values" while Kerry took home the bacon on Iraq. Foreign policy, I think we can mostly agree, is much more an image than a package of ideas, particularly in this election where the rhetorical differences boiled down to "same, but better". Republicans, the party of Daddy, won not on international ideas but on swagger, while Democrats lost not on multilateralism but on "I voted for it before I voted against it".

TEMPERS FLARE IN THE BLOGOSPHERE: They really do.  I mean, they REALLY do. But in the end there is an apology.  But when an enthusiastic and perhaps not etiquette sensitive 13 year old gets called a "bastard" and reads raging, dripping anger in print about him on the Internet, does an apology wipe away the original words? We think NOT: WORDS MATTER…and there are different ways of teaching someone a lesson. Some blogs felt angry enough about this to show solidary for the denounced teen. But the BEST POST IS HERE on this incident — and it is MUST READING for anyone who is reading this site. (TMV says "Bravo" to Hundred Percenter, which has now joined our blogroll.).

THE SOCIAL SECURITY DEBATE I: New England Republican thinks Democrats are forgetting what Bill Clinton said about Social Security needed to be fixed and saved — and reminds them in great detail. An excerpt:

Hmm, still sounds like Social Security needs to be fixed. How can this be? Democrats are now saying that Bush is creating a crisis that really isn’t there. This leads to a couple of questions that democrats should answer.

  1. Was your idol Bill Clinton also faking a crisis?
       
     
  2. If so, why didn’t you boo him too?

Hypocrites.

THE SOCIAL SECURITY DEBATE II: Preemptive Karma’s Carla has a different view. Here’s a small part of it:

Most noteably, Bush worked the "divide and conquer" notion. Those over age 55 won’t have any changes. The rest of us..the idea is to tell us we’re screwed if we don’t go with privatization.

In essence, the 55+ crowd is totally safe. Bush won’t touch them. It’s the rest of us who will get benefits slashed. The very politically influential baby boomers will make no sacrifices. And those private accounts? The carrot is supposed to be that you’ll get to pass them down to the next generation.

DO YOU WANT TO SEE TWO EXAMPLES OF LIVE BLOGGING OF THE SOTU SPEECH? Look no further than Oxblog’s David Adesnik. Attention young (and old) bloggers: consider him a role model. And, along the same vein — but with a slightly different style — look at Stephen Green, aka Vodka Pundit who did his under the title LiveDrunkGroupBarBlog.

IS PRESIDENT BUSH RIGHT TO BAR POTENTIAL PROTESTERS FROM HIS PERSONAL APPEARANCES? ISOU grapples with this issue.

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THE TRIAL OF THE KING OF PERPS POPS BEGINS and Jeff Jarvis is (rightfully) cringing:

Oh, gawd, the Michael Jackson trial begins. We watch him going to lunch. We watch him coming back from lunch. We watch the poor guy whose job it is to hold an umbrella over the poster boy for the dangers of fame. We watch MJ being wanded — no pat-downs here. We watch reporters fill time. And it’s just the first day. We’re sentenced to months of this.

They said on TV today that 1,000 journalists had applied for credentials to cover the trial. Why, lord, why?

The Inimitable James Wolcott has lots to say on the Iraqi elections. He MUST be read in full (whether you agree with him or not) but here’s a small part:

Indeed, (the Iraqi people’s) example should shame Americans, who have curled up into a fetal position with cowardice since 9/11, wanting to the state to make them feel "safe" no matter what the cost to civil liberties and personal freedom here and abroad.

What I dread is how this day will be used by the new centurions. The Iranian blogger Hoder with whom I had the pleasure to lunch when he visited New York (something I haven’t mentioned previously, for worry it would ruin his rep and get him de-linked by certain sulky bloggers), sensibly, succinctly observes today, "On the one hand I’m really excited that Iraqi people have been able to start the path to a potentially democratic political system, on the other hand I’m really upset that this will embolden neoconservatives and will be seen as a confirmation of their dangerous plans for the world."

DO TOP CONSERVATIVE BLOGGERS TALK ABOUT A SELF-CORRECTING BLOGOSPHERE WHILE TURNING OFF THEIR COMMENT HOSTING? Kevin Drum thinks so and gives you specifics. But aren’t there really many possible reasons for this? Just think if Glenn Reynolds, aka InstaPundit, had commenting on and all of the name calling he’d experience, plus the cuss words. Not to mention spams. I know of several bloggers that have been almost burned out due to commenting. (We have even had some minor problems on this site, but most readers offer useful suggestions. PS: I took my computer and tried and but it won’t fit up there.) Bottom line: the reason why a given blogger doesn’t use comments probably has less to do with ideology and an unwillingness to deal with opposing viewpoints than whether factors combine to make comments useful or too much of a hassle (deletions due to obscenties, porn, excessive name calling).

GUESS WHO PROTESTERS IN BRAZIL HAVE LABELLED THE NUMBER ONE TERRORIST? I’ll give you one guess (and he’s not a guy with a mangy beard).

DETAILED INFORMATION ON THE COLORADO PROFESSOR WHO’S IN HOT WATER AFTER CALLING 911 VICTIMS "LITTLE EICHMANNS" has been compiled by Wes Roth here. Note that he’s writing this for a South Dakota blog. His zippy Drudge-like Wes Roth Report is worth visiting frequently (but it is MORE RELIABLE than Drudge in terms of not running exclusives that don’t hold up and disppear…and he has never run a headline about "Jew groups.").

DOES THE US NEWS MEDIA HAVE A DOUBLE STANDARDL ON THE HOLOCAUST? The Basque blog Ingeleraz thinks so.

MORE ON THE IRAQI ELECTION RESULTS from Kevin Featherly, who has a long analysis which must be read in full. An excerpt:

I will confess that I did not believe this turn of events was likely to
happen. I will spare some reservations for exactly what it means; it
could be that the elections weren’t disrupted more broadly because the
insurgents have some other bigger plans. Or it could be that Iraq has
turned the corner on the insurgency, and will now beat it back with
their ballots. It is impossible at this stage to know. We won’t even
know for 10 days or so the exact outcome of the elections.

But one thing is undeniable. The Iraqis turned out at a rate of
about 57 percent nationwide, or about 8 million voters. And in
Baghdad–in the heart of the Sunni triangle, where walking the streets
is normally perilous, let alone during an election that terrorists
threatened to derail–turnout was huge….

And that was true despite obstacles that undoubtedly would have brought
turnout rates in an American election down to something like single
digits……It isn’t that the terrorists took the day off. There were in
fact attacks: Nine suicide bombers managed to kill some 36 people.
Iraqi citizens were taking chances with their lives in order to
exercise their democratic right to vote.

IS THE DEMOCRATIC PARTY STARTING TO RESEMBLE A MONTY PYTHON SKETCH? According to Roger Morrow it is.

INDIA COMES OF POLITICAL AGE: Daniel Drezner has a great post about post-tsunami India…and clearly India has grown. This is MUST READING since it must be read in full. But as someone who was a dedicated student of Indian politics and affairs; interned on the Hindustan Times in New Delhi; and worked and wrote there as a freelance for papers such as the Chicago Daily News and The Christian Science Monitor, I can tell you: Dresner’s post really reflects a shift. India was long considered the world’s clunkiest bureaucracy, aside from being the world’s biggest democracy. But if you read his post you see how India has begun to live up to the expectations many political scientists have had for many years — of it becoming a true regional power.

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ARE THE IRAQI ELECTIONS A WIN-WIN-WIN SITUATION? The (always witty and original) Talking Dog looks at the elections that just started and writes:

The best part of all: no matter what happens, the President can hail
having brought "democracy" to the Arab world, and maybe get his
ever-dropping approval rating off of its recent low water marks. Iran
gets a Shia-dominated government favorable to it, Sunni "insurgents"
get a freshly stoked and resentful Sunni populace…

Man, talk about a "win-win-win" situation.

INSTAPUNDIT AND THE SINGULARITY SOCIALIST: Newshog writes about some of Glenn Reyolds’ favorite authors and gets a visit in his comment section from InstaPundit himself.  And the Internet’s top blogger explains a bit about how he tries to link as he takes care of important daily tasks.

GUESS WHO’S GETTING INTO THE RACE FOR THE DEMOCRATIC NOMINATION? The answer is here.

ISLAMIC MILITANTS ATTACK PAKISTANI PAPER AFTER  IT RUNS INTERVIEW WITH ISRAEL’S SHIMON PEREZ URGIN BETTER ISRAELI-PAKISTAN RELATIONS: IsraPundit has the details and here’s a small part:

So, the unidentified attackers apparently belonged to a religious group
(which might explain why they were yelling "God is great!"), and this
obviously happened as a result of the Peres interview, yet we still
can’t quite come out and say so directly, instead stating that the
reason "wasn’t clear." We wouldn’t want anyone to get the idea that
Muslims hate Jews and would like to see the state of Israel destroyed,
now would we? Heaven forfend!

HAS THERE BEEN A QUIET INTERNATIONAL SHIFT? Digital Dissent’s Justin Delabar sees one, and explains in a must-read. A small portion:

In the international relations field there has been a debate over the
importance of nation-state actors ever since the rise of globalization
and, perhaps more importantly, terrorism by way of 9/11. Scholars have
claimed that the world was reaching a point where non-state actors
would take precedence over governments, be it the al Qaedas of the
world or the General Motors. However, the death of the nation-state has
been greatly exaggerated.

THE SIX DEGREES OF BLOGGING: Doug Petch finds he has a connection to Donald Sensing and wants to find out if any bloggers have even indirect connections to other bloggers or to him. (TMV has no connection to anyone since there is no other similar sublime perfection; just as Alan Keyes has no connection to anyone but ET.)

SPEAKING OF DONALD SENSING, he is one of our favorite writers. If you haven’t read him, Sensing is a former military official who is now a pastor. He writes some very serious and thoughtful stuff. On the elections he writes this:

1. The terrorist attempts to break up the election won’t do so and will
be actually less violent than expected. In fact, I predict that
election day will be a bonanza day for suppressing the terrorists
through capture or counterattack.

2. When the above becomes
known among Iraqis, Sunday evening and Monday will bring forth the most
widespread celebrations among the Iraqi people seen since the downfall
of Saddam. There will be dancing in the streets and brief period in
which these newly liberated people will be drunk on democracy, for a
day or two anyway.

I know I’m out on a limb, and if anyone
thinks I am engaging in wishful predictions, I plead guilty. But I
still think this will be so.

"…drunk on democracy…" Well, at least part of that should impress Ted Kennedy...

SPEAKING OF TED KENNEDY (we had to be snarky to get to this transition), New England Republican analyzes Massachusett’s senior Senator and finds he is nothing like his brother.

IS THIS WAR FOR OIL? John Pike thinks so and argues that this is precisely why we should support it.  He says the U.S. must be an imperial power and should defend its oil interests aggresssively. A tidbit of what he says:

So this war was certainly for oil. And so will the next one. And every president since Roosevelt has been fighting this same war. Because oil is like blood to the American way of life. Perhaps it would be better if it were not so. But it is, and is not likely to change in the next few decades.

But why can’t American presidents look into our nation’s collective eyes and level with us about what the stakes are in our covert and overt battle to maintain control over the Middle East–to admit that we must be an Imperialist nation? Because we Americans wouldn’t approve of the reflection of ourselves that we would see in his eyes.

ARE THOSE CAMERAS THAT ARE POPPING UP TO ENFORCE TRAFFIC LAWS A THREAT TO LIBERTY?  Tales of a Wandering Mind suggests we all take a deep breath before we get riled up…and he explains why.

ARE CONSERVATIVES USING CONDOLEEZA RICE’S RACE AS A POLITICAL TOOL? Pandagon’s Jesse Taylor says yes and explains why — partially by citing a columnists’ pitch for her.

MEANWHILE, THERE’S A CONTROVERSY ABOUT WHETHER MS. RICE IS BEING DUMBED DOWN: Robert Tagorda has the details.

THEY THINK THEY FOUND A DA VINCI STUDIO: And, no, we’re not referring to a studio used to film The Sopranos…but there is a slight tie in: it’s believed to be a studio where the famous artist dissected human bodies — and near where he met the inspiration for the Mona-You-Know-Who.

THE SOCIAL SECURITY BATTLE: Kevin Drum thinks the Bush plan is doomed and there is actually  some other strategical goal lurking behind the actual proposal.

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Globe_19 Our occasional selection of tidbits and masterpieces (that’s what their authors say) from the Internet. We do NOT select links based on ideology and aren’t promoting any political view (we just liked these posts). Opinions expressed do not reflect the view of The Moderate Voice.

DEMOCRATS ARE PRAISING CALIFORNIA BARBRA BOXER for her questioning of Condi Rice, which was so dogged it inspired a screachingly funny Saturday Night Parody. The Daily Kos writes:"Is there any doubt that Barbara Boxer is moving aggressively to fill the void left behind by (Minnesota Senator Paul) Wellstone’s tragic death?" And then there’s this lively new Senator Boxer related site.

THE STRANGE CASE OF A NEW JERSEY FAMILY: Were they murdered because they provoked Muslims in an online chatroom? Jihad Watch has the details. And are officials scared of this case…and why? Jihad Watch looks at that, too.

"THAT PESKY FOURTH AMENDMENT" is Tales of a Wandering Mind’s excellent examination of the issues raised by a recent court decision involving whether police can use a drug-detecting dog on a routine traffic stop. A MUST READ.

THE REAL NEW DEMOCRAT GIVES YOU AN UPDATE on the controversy involving another blog using his exact name (only difference: it’s on blogspot and doesn’t sound like a blog written by a Democrat) months after he started his. Follow the links on his post. Honestly, does this mean that if I want to increase my hits I am free to go out and rename my blog the name of another blog? Anyway, we believe there is The Real New Democrat and the other The New Democrat.

A HUGH HEWETT BLOOPER is unearthed by InstaPundit.

BRITISH MUSLIMS ARE BOYCOTTING THIS WEEK’S COMMEMORATION OF THE LIBERATION OF THE NAZI DEATH CAMP AUSCHWITZ: Details and a blunt translation of what this really means can be read at The Waterglass.

WHAT ARE OUR PRIORITIES: A simple, strong post from Bibbs Revenge poses the question.

FOR A LIST OF GREAT POSTS go to this week’s Watcher of Weasel’s Council selection. Note that one section is of posts by Council members. The other NON Council members — and if you have a blog and aren’t on the Council you CAN submit one of your posts for the Non Council category. (NOTE: The Moderate Voice was asked to sit on the Council, he agreed and boy is it bumpy..)

PHOENIX, AZ HAS A MASSIVE WATER PROBLEM THAT’S INCONVENIENCING A BIG CHUNK OF THE CITY: Details from local bloggers are here.

BLOGS THAT SHOULD BUT AREN’T GETTING ENOUGH ATTENTION are listed by Young Pundit.

YOU HAVE TO ENJOY THE WES ROTH REPORT with its format like the You Know Who Report (but it doesn’t run headlines about "Jew groups".. See our post here.)

ATTORNEY GENERAL NOMINEE ALBERTO GONZALES has faced some tough critics but we pity him now that the inimitable James Wolcott is on his case. A small part (read it all):

Alberto Gonzales is a careerist jellyfish who genuflects before presidential prerogative and has never betrayed a trace of intellectual distinction or moral integrity. He helped grease the assembly-line execution apparatus of the great state of Texas when Bush was governor by omitting in his clemency memos facts relating to poor counsel, mental incompetence, even evidence of innocence.

IS THERE A PARALLEL BETWEEN REAGAN ON RUSSIA AND BUSH ON IRAN? Carpe Bonum thinks so (and tells you why).

A STORY ABOUT A BOX, A KID AND SOME MEDALS…and some thinking.

ONE OF PANDAGON’S TWO HONCHOS GETS HIS OWN BLOG: Ezra Klein has started his own blog, after writing for Pandagon with Jesse Taylor for two years. Robert Tagorda at Outside The Beltway has the details. And you can read Klein’s explanation here.

STARBUCKS IS NOW PUTTING ESSAYS ON ITS COFFEE CUPS: Is this a brilliant idea or something that lends itself to propaganda?

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Globe_18 Our occasional collection of interesting reading culled from sites representing ALL viewpoints. Opinions expressed do not necessary reflect the opinion of The Moderate Voice.

ARE JOURNALISTS KILLING JOURNALISM AS A PROFESSION BY IGNORING A PUBLISHED CODE OF ETHICS? The website Carpe Bonum thinks so and tells you why.

AN AL QAEDA REVIEW can be read on former military man Donald Sensing’s site, chock full of highly insightful info on the terrorist group, its motives and plans..

ANALYZING THE NEOCONS: Brent Rasmussen provides an extensive look at the neocons and their influence on the Bush administration. It’s extensive and worth reading in full. He sees a danger that events may cause Osma bin Laden to attack the U.S. homeland again to frame Iran. Here’s a small taste:

For the last couple of years, Osama has been content to let the neocons go at it in Iraq. They have after all left him more or less alone, while driving Muslim opinion and willing recruits to him in a manner he can only think is the divine work of Allah. So he’s had no incentive to take any risks and disrupt that dynamic.

But Osama views Iran as a threat to his ideology. They’re Shia, they’re powerful, and Sunni’s like OBL view the Shia as batshit crazy, heretical lunatics. If OBL sees that our appetite for war in Iraq is waning, and the Shia are going to come out ahead after everything is said and done, he will have an incentive to knock us off balance again.

I don’t have any idea what goes through the mind of OBL, I don’t even know if he has the capacity to attack us, but here’s how I’d play it if I were in his shoes. I wouldn’t do anything to upset the way things are now. But if we begin to leave Iraq, and the Shia rise up, he might reconsider. If I were OBL, I’d bend heaven and earth to put forth every appearance the Iranians were helping me, and then attack the US, framing Iran as complicit in the process …

ON FEMALE PHYSICS FACULTY MEMBERS: Look at this to see how the U.S. stacks up compared to other countries.

THE BEST COMMENTS AND ANALYSIS ON BUSH’S INAUGURAL ADDRESS have been by Oxblog’s David Adesnik. He isn’t getting wrapped up in the partisan cheering or jeering sections. He has done several superb posts. In his latest post compares Bush’s IDEAS to ideas in other Presidential inaugural addresses, arguing "only in the context of his predecessor’s words that the uniqueness of George W. Bush’s inaugural address can be understood." An excerpt:

There are two attributes that distinguish Bush’s second inaugural from those that preceded it. Its talk of democracy spreading across the globe is not one of them. That is a cliche.

But the intensity of Bush’s emphasis on democracy promotion is unprecedented. His emphasis has forced all those who comment on the inaugural address to grapple with that issue.

But more importantly, Bush repeatedly emphasized that the United States must take an active role in spreading freedom and liberty across the globe. In contrast, his predecessors have relied on passive formulations that, as John Quincy Adams might have said, present the United States as a "well-wisher to the freedom and independence of all" but "the champion and vindicator of only her own."

ELVIS IS A BIG HIT IN ENGLAND AGAIN but did you know that there was a time when he caused a scandal (and created a new style) because of his use of the word "ain’t?"

OUR PAL PUTIN STRIKES AGAIN: Russia is coming to the verbal defense of Syria against the backdrop of growing concern (and of course rumors that Russia is selling Syria missiles have nothing to do with Vladimir sticking up for that terrorist enabling nation).

DO BLOGGERS NEED A CODE OF ETHICS? A MUST READ ON BLOGGERS AND BLOGGING can be found at skippy the bush kangaroo (who writes only in lower case). Read the whole post. One of skippy’s key points is the fallacy when journalists start trying to apply journalistic standards to bloggers when journalism and blogging is not necessarily the same thing. Here’s part of what he writes:

there is no "code of ethics" needed for bloggers, because bloggers are just americans discussing their country and the world. does uncle fred have to disclose everyone he worked for when he complains about how the city never fixes potholes outside his house? we don’t think so. and if uncle fred sets up a "i hate the city ‘cuz they never fix potholes.blogspot.com" blog, does he have to create, and then adhere to, a code of ethics, just like paid journalists are supposed to, but hardly ever, do? no.

people are allowed to listen to other’s opinions without worrying about ethics, because people can make up their own minds about the sources’ ethics. "yeah, bob hates the feminists, but he also shacks up with goats, so i think i won’t hold his ideas too highly."

journalists, who rightly are angry that they are still held to an ethics code, when every other industry in america is shedding any modicrum of responsibility, would do better to start holding politicians, the energy industry, the banks, the pharmaceutical industry, and their own bosses to a higher standard, than pick on some guy in his pajamas expressing his opinion.

My FOOTNOTE TO SKIPPY: I do NOT sleep in pajamas. I bare all for truth.

WAS THE BOSTON TERRORISM NUKE SCARE A FALSE ALARM? MartiniPundit notes signs that it was — and offers a theory of what it REALLY was.

BEWARE OF ANYONE TRYING TO LINK UP OSAMA BIN LADEN AND IRAN writes Justin Delebar.

TAKING POLITICAL STOCK OF HIS POSITIONS ON ISSUES libertarian Andrew Quinn gives us a succinct and bold list (no hedging).

THE MAC MINI IS REVIEWED BY Will Collier who thinks its great for some things, but notes that it clearly has some limitations.

THE MODERATE VOICE INTERVIEWED: Our answer to Question #4 of a 20 question interview is now up on Random Fate.

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Globe_17Our occasional collection of links from all over Blogtopia. Links are NOT selected due to political position and posts listed here do not necessarily reflect the opinion of The Moderate Voice.

RALPH REED IS APPARENTLY DREAMING OF A WHITE…HOUSE…SEAT IN THE OVAL OFFICE: And Bull Moose wonders about a ticket of Reed and someone with the initials K.R….and even offers a proposed slogan.

IT LOOKS LIKE DISSENT IS FLOWERING IN NORTH KOREA: A poster of North Korea’s dicator has been defaced.

FREELANCERS GETTING FREE STUFF FOR COVERAGE? Greg Piper looks at a L.A. Times article on this and he asks:

The piece singles out freelancers as particularly prone to taking swag – I’d be curious to hear from former freelancer Joe Gandelman what he encountered in his career, anecdotally if not personally. It’s a longish piece but worth the read. It reminds me of an incident at my former think tank- we were having an open house at our new office, and a producer I knew from the local NPR affiliate came by to wish us well. It was just after the Christmas season and we had several bottles of wine and beer, but also apple cider for the nondrinkers. This producer politely turned down the wine and went for the cider, although I’m positive this person was a drinker. Didn’t want to create the appearance of impropriety, I suspect. As the designated bottle-finisher, I had a great time!

MY ANSWER TO GREG: In all of my time freelancing overseas (nearly 8 years in India, Spain and Bangladesh) I didn’t know of a freelancer overseas who took free stuff from anyone for good coverage. Governments had their ways to try to snuggle up to the press: nice, ornate lunches, multi-course dinners, etc.. U.S. Ambassdor to India Daniel Patrick Moynihan used to love to invite reporters in for a "news briefing" which basically was sitting around his office while he gave everyone — and himself — drinks. I know of one freelancer who borrowed a lot of money from a rich Indian businessman and never paid it back. But I never witnessed the kind of thing the Times writes about. I do know that there has been a debate over freebies given to people who review movies.

A SHORT LETTER TO DAN RATHER from Jay Rosen.

ANOTHER RAMBO FILM WITH 58-YEAR-OLD SYLVESTER STALLONE IS IN THE WORKS reports Outside the Beltway. What’ll they title it? Rambo: Vietnam to Viagra?

A LIBERAL’S TAKE ON ANN COULTER: Newshog notes that he read her book (oftentimes people on the right or left lambast someone and they haven’t even seen or read the person’s work). And this is his verdict after a mega-dose of Ann.

A TEENAGE BLOGGER SAYS HIS AGE SHOULD MAKE NO DIFFERENCE BUT HIS IDEAS SHOULD… and he  makes his case here. Indeed, whenever you see us link to Andrew Quinn we do so ONLY because of his IDEAS and how he expresses them.  We don’t KNOW the age of most people we link to (The Moderate Voice who looks so young, vibrant and who we know reminds you of Brad Pitt will never reveal his age. He promised Teddy Roosevelt he wouldn’t.) In fact, on the Internet you don’t even know if a person who says they’re writing a blog is the real person (and I MEAN that or my name isn’t Karl Rove).

SPAMMERS THAT CLUTTER UP BLOGS’ COMMENTS SECTIONS are now being penalized by Google search engines. There is a God in Heaven.

SHOULD HOWARD DEAN LEAD THE DNC? That Colored Fellas Weblog makes the case why he should. Here’s part of it:

Every Wednesday morning in Washington, D.C., envoys from every faction that makes up the Conservative Movement (including groups representing the White House and Bloggers), meet to swap notes and plot strategy. Although, this group actually operates independently from where ‘the buck ultimately stops’ – at the White House desk of Karl Rove – their feedback, suggestions and grievances are heard, considered and acknowledged. Such discipline and value given to disparate voices of the party have been pivotal factors in gaining power.

 

As envious a template that undoubtedly is, we as Democrats will not come close to replicating its needed effectiveness, unless someone is given the power, the chance to remake this party in the image of those who have infused it with conviction and passion. Since November, I have seen the voices of compromise and capitulation being shouted down by said members of the Kerry Minority, repudiating any notions that our message was at fault. In the former category, you’ll find party leaders such as Donna Brazille and James Carville. In the latter category, you’ll only find Howard Dean.

ARE CONSERVATIVES BEING INCONSISTENT ON THE DAN RATHER CONTROVERSY? Jack O’Toole thinks they are and gives you specifics.

HOW DO YOU SPELL THUG? Apparently D-e-t-r-o-i-t  M-a-y-o-r. Go here and then watch the amazing video of a reporter being body slammed by the body guard of Detroit’s Mayor because he dared to ask His Highness Who Is Above Us Mortals why $25,000 in taxpayers funds was spent for a luxury vehicle. Listen to the mayor repeat a line over and over. Hopefully Detroit’s voters will send His Highness into retirement. The Real Dummy thanks Wizbang for the tip. Notes Wizbang’s Kevin Aylward:

So what’s all the fuss about? 

While Detroit government employees faced the choice of a layoff or 10% pay cut, and residents face reduced city services, Detroit’s mayor spent a mound of taxpayer money ($24,000 a year) to lease a brand new Lincoln Navigator for his wife.

Hey, anything for His Highness (or his bodyguards will beat you up).

IT LOOKS LIKE THERE’S ABOUT TO BE REGIME CHANGE IN THE URKRAINE: For details read Bloggledygook.

FOR A GREAT COLLECTION OF POSTS just look at this list at Watcher of Weasels (TMV has a post on this list — a highly personal one).

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Globe_16 Our idea stew of links from all over the Blogo-you-know-what. Links are NOT SELECTED or recommended on the basis of ideology and represent differing political views. Opinions expressed do not necessarily represent the views of The Moderate Voice.

THERE’S A NEW PROBLEM WITH KIDS AND THEY’RE CALLED TWIXTERS: Stephen Green explains:"Apparently, there are millions of these grown-ups kids now: Putting off marriage (women now marry on average at 25 and have their first baby at the same age; ten years ago, the average ages were 21 and 22 respectively); putting off real careers; putting off wearing regular-size pants that don’t hang down below their ass cracks, etc." Green cites a story…but then tells you about his background and admits he may sound like a "premature old fogey" in doing so (no, he just sounds very wise for someone who looks so young..)

THE SOCIAL SECURITY DEBATE IS HEATING UP and it’s going on at a fever pitch over at Media Matters For America. Our alert reader George Hale let us know about this one. Read not only MMFA’s piece but the monster debate in the comments section.

HOW MUCH HAS CHINA CHANGED IN THE LAST 15 YEARS since Zhao Zhiyang, the former leader of the Chinese Communist Party until the Tiananmen Square crackdown, died? Daniel Dresner has some thoughts on that.

IS MISSISSIPPI HOLDING OUT ON MARTIN LUTHER KING DAY? According Boing Boing, the state won’t celebrate Martin Luther King Day unless they celebrate Robert E. Lee Day. Oh..

DID YOU EVER STRUGGLE TO TRY TO QUIT SMOKING? If so, then you’ll sympathize with Michele Catalano’s ordeal (and her vows).

A NEW PARTICIPATORY NEWS POSTING SITE IS GOING TO DEBUT and it’s name is Taking Back The News. People can post stories of interest to them. Details are here.

THE KKK GOES TO KOURT TO KLEAN UP THE HIGHWAYS AND WINS IN MISSOURI: Skippy The Bush  Kangaroo…whoops…we mean skippy the bush kangaroo (all in lower caps on that site) has the details here. What’s the big deal? You would think the state would want the KKK to clean up the highways since members can use their sheets to hold trash…which is what their sheets normally hold anyway.

HE REALLY DOES, you know. And so does Jose, Irving, Sam, Terry, Sgt. Polk of the Police Department. But Chevron loves it.

RIGHT WING NEWS’S JOHN HAWKINS INTERVIEWED DICK MORRIS and the interview is here. (TMV loves to read and listen to Morris but agrees with Political Scientist Larry Sabato that his prediction record in terms of accuracy is…ahem…challenged..) Morris thinks Hillary Clinton can get the nomination over any other Democrat in 2008 and that Rudy Giuliani and John McCain don’t stand a chance for the GOP one. His counter to Hillary: Condi Rice. His advice to the GOP:" Nominate Rice. Otherwise Hillary will win."

DO POWERFUL GOP BIGWIGS REALLY HOLD THE RELIGIOUS RIGHT IN CONTEMPT? Bullmoose thinks they secretly do and tells you how they’re using the RR..and why.

WOULD YOU BELIEVE THE DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY HAS AGENTS OUT THERE TRYING TO PROTECT THE PATENT ON TOYS? Apparently they do.

THERE HAS BEEN CONTROVERSY OVER THE PRESIDENT’S INTERVIEW ON AIR FORCE ONE and The Talking Dog gives you his take on what it means in terms of the war, his party, Social Security and gay marriage. His conclusion:"It’s going to be a fun four years, and it hasn’t even started. Welcome to Dodge."

SHOULD IRAQ POSTPONE THE ELECTIONS? Oxblog’s David Adesnik puts the question under his blog’s probing microscope. Here’s part of what he says:

At this point, I think that the best course for the United States is to go through with the January elections and work behind the scenes to ensure that the constitutional assembly produces a document that addresses Sunni concerns. While it may be hard to persuade the newly-empowered Shi’ites to compromise, the same incentives…. will still be there.

In fact, the assembly might prove to be far more effective in negotiating with the Sunni leadership since it will have a democratic mandate, unlike the Allawi government. Instead of enticing the Sunnis with a postponed election, the Shi’ites can hold out the prospect of a constitution that favors district-based elections rather than proportional representation. If the assembly completes it work on time, then the Sunnis will be able to reap the benefits of a district-based system by the end of the 2005.

Admittedly, I have limited confidence in the ability of the United States to steer the assembly in the direction it prefers. Thus, the real question is whether the Shi’ite majority, once it has power, will live up to the ideals of democracy and tolerance it has advocated so consistently during the occupation. I believe it can.

JUST WHAT THE TSUNAMI VICTIMS NEED: SHIPMENTS OF DESIGNER BOTTLED WATER BELOVED BY CELEBRITIES SUCH AS MADONNA…and this is no joke. Jew School (hey, that’s what they used to call my old high school) has the details.

AND SPEAKING OF JEWS, WHO BETTER TO BLAME FOR THE ABDUCTION OF TSUNAMI VICTIMS’ KIDS THAN THE JEWS? And the person doing it — surprise! — is an Arab sneering the word "ZIONISM." (One day when this guy dies I assume they’re going to bury him face down so he can see where he’s going.)

IT’S FOOD PORN: Burp!

MCDONALD’S IS MOURNING THE DEATH OF YET ANOTHER CEO: McDetails here.

BUT IN CHINA they’re going crazy over KFC.

IT’S A CASE OF THE GATE CALLING THE GATE A GATE as Bill Gates contradicts himself (words versus reality).

ANOTHER MAINSTREAM MEDIA COLUMNIST HAS TAKEN A SWIPE AT BLOGS and someone answered him back in kind. (Everyday I Thank God that this guy is alive.)

WHAT DOES MICHAEL DUKAKIS THINK THE DEMOCRATS DID WRONG? Nominal Me interviews him and finds out.

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Globe_15Our occasional medly of links from weblogs of all political persuasions. Opinions do not necessarily represent the opinion of The Moderate Voice (unless they are expressed by The Moderate Voice).

THE REAL COST OF THE WAR IN IRAQ: Whether you’re a liberal, conservative, Republican or Democrat, you want to read Jack Grant of  Random Fate’s cautionary note on the real cost of war in full. He starts noting the impact of the war on a friend of his who is veteran and wonders: do people forget the REAL cost behind the statistics and words "the military" ? Read it ALL…but here’s  tiny excerpt:

Do those in power who decided upon war and how it is waged, the Rumsfelds, the Ashcrofts, the Gonzaleses, the Bushes, really, truly, ultimately understand the price they are asking of not only hundreds, but thousands and tens of thousands of our best and brightest in our armed forces? Do any of them know personally any close friend who suffers from the effects of what they are asking of our people?

Do those who casually write their weblogs, in the warmth and safety of their family and their homes, truly understand what is going on in Iraq? Do they truly understand the price paid, not only in time away from family and friends, births missed, spouses unsupported, but ultimately the long-term loss of peace of mind?

ARE CONSERVATIVES JUST TOO GLEEFUL ABOUT DAN RATHER?  The inimitable James Wolcott firmly believes they are and saves some of his delicious acid-scorn for  conservative columnist Charles Krauthammer. MUST READ (even for conservatives)

MEANWHILE, THE MAINSTREAM MEDIA IN THE INTERNET AGE is discussed extensively and thoughtfully by Doug Fridley. Read all of it, but here’s a smidgen: 

The MSM monopoly wasn’t on information. It was on the media for distributing information. Those “castle walls� represent the cost of getting information published or broadcast. The walls are coming down because the Internet is making those costs so cheap as to be effectively free.This is not a hair-splitting distinction. The difference is huge.

The transformative power of blogs today, and the challenge to legacy-media institutions, was only hinted at in events like Rathergate. Perhaps because it’s only a hint, many of those within those institutions are missing the true significance. Certainly CBS’ lack of serious change in wake of their internal investigation might represent this. But they’re hardly alone.

THERE IS SOME GOOD NEWS FROM IRAQ and Arthur Chrenkoff offers you a ton of it.

WHAT IS THE POLITICAL MIDDLE…AND DOES IT REALLY EXIST? Preemptive Karma’s Carla argues that it really doesn’t.

BE SURE TO VISIT BLOGSPECTRUM which is a fascinating group blog where they take an issue and dissect it. They’re not into name calling (as Random Fate’s Jack Grant experienced due to his honest post linked above) but discussion of ISSUES by people of ALL political persuasions. The Internet (and our national political debate) needs more people who feel the same way.

HOW WILL THE LEGISLATIVE DEMOCRATS ATTACK THE WHITE HOUSE’S SOCIAL SECURITY PLAN? The Principled Objection has some specific thoughts.

THE PENTAGON HAD BEEN WORKING ON A CHEMICAL WEAPON THAT WOULD CHANGE ENEMY TROOPS’ SEXUALITY No  kidding.

SATURDAY NIGHT LIVE MADE FUN OF HOWARD DEAN’S QUEST TO BE DNC CHAIR and Mike at Running Scared thinks it truly sucked. He also notes the decline of sketch comedy on SNL and MAD TV in general.

CONSERVATIVE HUMOR: A web satire on Dan Rather and the news media.

ARE YOU OUTRAGED ABOUT COMMENTATOR ARMSTRONG WILLIAMS TAKING BIG BUCKS FROM THE ADMINISTRATION TO PITCH ITS LINE? If so, Americablog wants you to send an email to the FCC demanding an immediate investigation.

OR ARE YOU A COLLEGE STUDENT UPSET ABOUT YOUR PROFESSOR TALKING POLITICS RATHER THAN TEACHING? If so check out the Indepundit (formerly Citizen Smash).

WHAT DOES SOMEONE LEARN AFTER BLOGGING VERY SERIOUSLY FOR A MONTH by writing thoughtful posts, promoting them by sending them other blogs, networking — and then standing back and evaluating this whole new  communication tool? AZ Perspective tells you here.

THE IRAQI HITMAN PICTURE SHOW is a satire from the ever-original and mysterious Ayn Clouter (a woman? a man?) on The American Street. Must read for satire fans.

WHAT WAS IT LIKE WHEN YOU GOT YOUR FIRST MAC AND YOU WERE HOOKED INTO THE WORLD OF COMPUTERS? Actor-writer Wil Wheaton (who has a big and SUPERB non-political blog) writes about that as he prepares for a talk at MacWorld.

PRESIDENT BUSH THINKS HIS ELECTION RATIFIES HIS IRAQ POLICY AND THAT NO ADMINISTRATION OFFICIALS THEREFORE NEED TO BE HELD ACCOUNTABLE…but Gary Farber adamantly disagrees…and from the ton of arguments he can make supporting his position it’s clear GWB is playing with political fire with comments like that. (Read Farber in full and you’ll see).

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Globe_14 Our occasional round up of some interesting bits from around the Internet. The varying views expressed do not necessarily represent the views of The Moderate Voice.

FOR A GREAT CROSS SECTION OF POSTS visit the Watcher Of Weasels today which has a list of posts up for this week’s voting. It includes Council members and non-Council members (The Moderate Voice was asked to sit on the Council and even though our butt is not big we agreed).

EMINEM some regrets about the Presidential race.

NOW THAT THE TSUNAMI HAS RAVAGED THE BIGGEST ISLAMIC NATION Mark Daniels asks "Where’s Osama now?" (Hey, that IS a good question but his followers feel the money is better spent on shiny new knives to cut off the heads of bound, screaming prisoners).

IS THERE A RED/BLUE IMPACT ON THE NFL? Running Scared thinks so.

DOES HIV REALLY CAUSE AIDS? Dean Esmay continues his highly controversial series of posts — posts that contain a lot of original reporting and thinking.

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Globe_12 Links from varying political perspectives. They do not necessarily reflect the opinions of The Moderate Voice.

THE DEAD POOL: The Smart Cop gives you images of the ones he feels won’t be here a year from now.

WHAT REALLY CAN GO ON IN A CLASSROOM: A student’s beating by a bully is caught on video tape and The Education Wonks (who know something about this) have something to say about it. Here’s just part:

There is an unwritten "code of silence" that every student knows, as does almost every public school teacher, as do most public school administrators.

The code simply states, "If you go to the authorities, sooner or later we are gonna make you pay." In other words, the bullies do not fear (nor respect) school authorities. And the victims know that the school will not protect them.

As an actively serving classroom teacher, I can affirm that this is the type of criminal behavior that is occurring everyday in classrooms around the country. There have been numerous classroom fights in my own mid-sized California school district. The difference, of course, is that this particular malefactor (obviously lacking any brains whatsoever) had an (equally idiotic) accomplice videotape the crime.

Expulsion for these two offenders will not even be automatic. There is a good chance that the school will find an "alternative placement" for these vicious predators. In other words, the school system will probably "pass the buck" and enroll these disgusting little creatures on another campus.

A WEBLOG NEEDS READER HELP: The progressive blog Wampum, which runs the Kofax Awards needs a relatively small amount of money to stay afloat. It posted this notice:

We’re asking again for financial support, namely because we found out last week that our single paying consulting gig has been postponed due to the death of one of the parties. While this is obviously tragic for the family, it also means it’s fish-cut-bait for us in determining whether we pay the ISP costs ($264.86) or fill the oil tank with what’s left in our checking account. Seriously, it’s down to that until we can drum up more business or start flipping burgers. We have until Monday to make that decision, and if it’s the latter, Wampum closes down. The PayPal contribution link is at the top of the page, and thanks to all in advance who click through it.

The Moderate Voice believes the increasing number of people who are turning to the Internet and weblogs are best served with a large menu of ideas. If Wampum leaves the scene the Internet will be poorer for it.

THE 40 MOST OBNOXIOUS QUOTES OF 2004: We previously gave you a link to the most obnoxious quotes from a conservative point of view. Here courtesy of Rooftop Report are the most obnoxious from the centrist point of view. A few of our favorites:

5. "It does not affect your daily life very much if your neighbor marries a box turtle. But that does not mean it is right… Now you must raise your children up in a world where that union of man and box turtle is on the same legal footing as man and wife." – Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX)

Sounds like a shell game to me…

7. "Go f*ck yourself." – Vice President Dick Cheney to Sen. Patrick Leahy on the Senate floor

Hey: that’s what the last 10 emails from my readers said!

10. "Now, you think it’s a coincidence that on September 11th, 2001, we were struck by terrorists an evil that has at its heart the disregard of innocent human life? We who have for several decades killed not thousands but scores of millions of our own children, in disregard of the principle of innocent human life — I don’t think that’s a coincidence, I think that’s a warning. I don’t think that’s a coincidence, I think that’s a shot across the bow. I think that’s a way of Providence telling us, ‘I love you all; I’d like to give you a chance. Wake up! Would you please wake up." – Alan Keyes


Remember: Alan Keyes has a special perspective up there on Mars.

THE IRONY OF PARTISANSHIP when it MUST be exercised, even if an idea by another party makes sense…is noted by Todd Pearson.

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Posted by on Jan 4, 2005 in At TMV |

Around The ‘Sphere

Globe_11 Links to various topics and posts. Links are NOT selected on the basis of any political ideolgy and do not necessarily reflect the opinion of The Moderate Voice.

THE 40 MOST OBNOXIOUS QUOTES FROM 2004 from a conservative standpoint via Right Wing News. (Some of our readers say this whole blog qualifies..)

BAIT AND SWITCH ON TOM DELAY? Corriente suggests the GOP House leader is trying to get off the hook another way. (It does seem a good theory.)

BUSH BLEW RESPONSE TO THE TSUNAMI AT FIRST BUT NOW HAS IT RIGHT according to Kevin Featherly, who blasts the President’s earlier responses but genuinely argues the case "better late than never."

RAISING MONEY FOR TSUNAMI VICTIMS: IS THERE A LEFT-RIGHT DIVIDE? Dave Schuler has investigated and even has a graph to show you what he found charting the  attention the big liberal and big conservative blogs gave to trying to raise funds for the tidal wave victims. What he found and documents is fascinating. A MUST READ (for us to summarize it oversimplifies it).

AND WHILE WE’RE ON THE SUBJECT…We’ve already mentioned it and put it on an update on our first tsunami post, but Oxblog’s comprehensive list of groups that’ll pass your money along is one of the best you can find.

THERE ARE SPLITS AMONG IRAN’S REFORMERS and Digital Dissent’s Justin Delbar looks at this issue in detail, posing the vital (to the U.S. for sure) question: "If the current Iranian government were to fall, which dissident group would rise up to lead? I believe this is a pertinent matter to consider since conflict is already becoming apparent between reformist groups."

THE DEMOCRATS WERE SNOOKERED ON TOM DELAY AND SOTHE NEWS MEDIA (AND BLOGGERS) WERE, TOO writes The Talking Dog, who (convincingly) argues that the Demmies were outmanuevered in the end.

DO MANY CONSERVATIVES ARGUE IN FAVOR OF GAY MARRIAGE? John Pike (who welcomes your feedback)   right here.

ON THE QUESTION OF TRACKBACKS: Diggers Realm explains it all. A key portion where he makes the point many forget (and says it just right) is this:

It is an accepted etiquette that when you trackback to someone you have a link to their entry in your article. It is bad form to send trackback pings to someone’s blog and not provide a link to his or her story within your entry. Some view this as spam as they are allowing you to put a link to your entry on their website yet you are not reciprocating with your own. Some will just delete the trackback. Others will email you a nasty letter or leave a nasty comment on your site. Some will even ban you not allowing you to trackback to their site ever again. To avoid this make sure you link to their entry.

A DO IT YOURSELF BLOG POST: Just use the drop down menu and click. Courtesy of Beautiful Atrocities.

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Posted by on Jan 2, 2005 in At TMV |

Around The ‘Sphere

Globe_10 Links to various topics and posts. Links are NOT selected on the basis of any political ideolgy and do not necessarily reflect the opinion of The Moderate Voice.

IS THE AYN RAND INSTITUTE WAY OUT THERE, LIKE ON MARS? Scott Shields thinks they are (and so by the way does The Moderate Voice) due to their stance on aid to tsunami victims. (We read the same piece and at first thought it HAD to be a satire out of The Onion, but we were wrong).

DID THE BUSH ADMINISTRATION BUNGLE IT ON THE TSUNAMI AID ISSUE by first announcing $15 million and (coincidentally or not) later increasing the pledge to $350 million? Oxblog’s Josh Chafetz has some (right on the button TMV says) thoughts.

52 CLASSIC KIDDIE RECORDS WILL BE RELEASED ON CDSone a week. These are going to include Bozo the Clown and Bugs Bunny. When I was a kid I had the Bozo record. As a kid I watched Bozo on television  on WGN’s Bozo show (just like as an adult I watched Bozos on television in the Presidential debates). These kiddie records were heavily influenced by the Golden Age of Radio (before my time) and cartoons (not before my time).

MEANWHILE, IN IRAQ A FORMER DICATOR HUDDLES WITH HIS LAWYERS, brags about his role in creating the insurgency and complains because American’s won’t let him shave his beard.

SPECULATION CONTINUES OVER THE NEXT SUPREME COURT JUSTICE: Some think they know who Bush WILL choose…which may not be the same, they feel, as who he SHOULD choose…

DR. DOBSON’S POLITICAL APHRODISIAC FOR THE GOP: Rick Heller doesn’t feel it’s healthy for anyone (especially moderates).

IN MODERN DAY AMERICA BEING REVILED MEAN’S YOU’VE ARRIVED so blogger La Shawn Barber should feel pleased by the news she shares that someone not only has compared her to Ann Coulter (who The Moderate Voice modestly maintains is the mirror image of Michael Moore, except one needs a shave and one has a big Adam’s Apple…you decide which…) and an actual anti-La Shawn blog has been set up. (The Moderate Voice hasn’t experienced that yet, but we get reviled for our posts in our comments and in our emails — so we know we’re almost there. We dutifully try to follow reader’s suggestions but so far we can’t shove our computer up there.)

A RESERVIST IS TOLD MONEY HE RAISED FOR BODY ARMOUR IS NOT NEEDED (THE MONEY WAS REFUSED): Sure…The Talking Dog has details.

THERE IS SOME GOOD NEWS FROM IRAQ and Arthur Chrenkoff has it.

THE DEAD POOL: James Joyner offers his predictions on who will be leaving us for a long trip upstairs/below (circle one) in 2005. (You can write your predictions in our comments. And please leave our name OUT.)

AND WHILE YOU’RE PREDICTING, WHAT ABOUT 2005 YEARLY PREDICTIONS? A comprehensive list of year predictions is available on The Glittering Eye. (We will try to offer our own on Tuesday).

IS HOOTERS REPUBLICAN? That sounds grammatically incorrect, but it isn’t. Hooters is two of the most interesting…I mean, one of the most interesting…restaurants….around (quite around), always keeping abreast of what’s most appealing in the dining experience. But now there’s a question raised about it. Libertarian Girl has it (and her answer).

THE WORST NEW YEAR’S EVE EVER is recalled by Michele Catalano.

CAN WHAT VOLTAIRE WROTE SOME 300 YEARS AGO COULD BE APPLIED TO THE TSUNAMI?  Decide for yourself here.

"CODA" is another truly original, heartfelt piece by Jack Grant on his weblog, Random Fate (The Moderate Voice considers it a jewel on the Internet) — a site that follows his heart and avoids "blogspeak." This must be read in its entirety to appreciate it, but here’s his conclusion:

September 11, 2001, was felt all over America, with many knowing people in the areas affected by the attacks, learning the fear that goes with love when the loved ones cannot be reached. Now we have a tragedy 40 times larger, but with no Earthly agency that can be held responsible, no one to hate, only the anguish of lives ended before their time for no apparent reason, with no deeper meaning, nothing gained from such a terrible sacrifice, and the abyss yawns darkly at our feet returning not even an echo, much less any answers, to the aguished cries of "Why?" ripped from those who had those they love torn away.

Yet of these, there is still hope. Meaning may at last be found, unwilling and unknowing sacrifice may not ultimately be in vain, and the emptiness of the abyss rejected. In the closing minutes of this year when midnight comes, hold your loved ones close, and remember all those who can no longer perform this simple, human act, and remember also we all have loved ones that we eventually lose. In the end, the tragedy of losing the ones we love is the single thing we all have in common, and in that shared grief can be found understanding. Perhaps in the terrible coda this New Years presents we can all learn of our common humanity, our common pain, and what is truly, ultimately important.

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