Hiroshima — Seventy Years On
Aug06

Hiroshima — Seventy Years On

Here it comes again, the hand-wringing, and the moralizing and the rest of it. The New Yorker reprints their 1946 piece on the 1945 bombing: I—A NOISELESS FLASH John Hersey / New Yorker At exactly fifteen minutes past eight in the morning, on August 6, 1945, Japanese time, at the moment when the atomic bomb flashed above Hiroshima, Miss Toshiko Sasaki, a clerk in the personnel department of the East Asia Tin Works, had just sat down...

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Happy 46th Moon Day!
Jul20

Happy 46th Moon Day!

In light of the recent jingoism of the Pluto fly-by (which I had hoped we were bigger than — after all, what looks sillier than those getting the first view of our furthest “planet” standing around waving US flags?) it’s a good time to remember the wording of that plaque we left behind on all our Apollo missions: “We came in peace for all mankind.” The Apollo missions taught us that we were all...

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Cruz’s ‘A Time For Truth’ Belies Its Title. Surprised?
Jul13

Cruz’s ‘A Time For Truth’ Belies Its Title. Surprised?

How do you promote a slick piece of GOPaganda, bash your arch-enemy, the New York Times, and manipulate an incompetent and credulous media that you DON’T own (yet) into carrying your (sewer) water for you? Easy: Call up Dylan Byers at Politico. Amazon: ‘No evidence’ of bulk sales for Ted Cruz book Dylan Byers / Politico The New York Times’ refusal to put Ted Cruz’s memoir on its bestseller list is once again being...

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The Great White Hype
Jun19

The Great White Hype

UPDATED BELOW You have to admit this much: the White GOPs find themselves, increasingly, defending the indefensible with increasingly flaccid tropes. Defending discrimination against LGBT. Defending voting against Veterans’ (desperatedly needed) benefits. Defending NOT doing anything to lift the bootheel of the recession from American throats. Defending NOT doing anything about the increasingly apocalyptic weather of Global...

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Of Gunfights and Boiling Frogs
May20

Of Gunfights and Boiling Frogs

You can always leave it to the ideologues of the Right to view events through funhouse mirror lenses: Making the comparison with Baltimore, many on the left — Salon’s Jenny Kutner, to take an example — demanded to know why the media did not describe the events in Waco as a “riot.” The answer, obviously enough, is that the event in Waco was not a riot — it did not represent a general state of civil disorder, there were no mobs...

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Why David Duke Was Never Allowed To Speak
May06

Why David Duke Was Never Allowed To Speak

UPDATED BELOW I’m going to be talking about the worst kind of hate imaginable herein, so those with delicate sensibilities, please be warned: Caveat Lector. Got your attention? Good. Let me tell you a little story from college days, and then I’ll scare hell out of you. David Duke was on the TCU speakers’ list. The lily-white administration realized what it would like for a secesh school (TCU was founded by two...

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I give you my sprig of lilac
Apr14

I give you my sprig of lilac

This is the day that last week’s Appomattox Anniversary was ignored in favor of, as we shall re-enact the American Passion Play yet again. The Associated Press has their original news reports, but can’t help congratulating themselves, making Lincoln merely secondary: Associated Press AP Was There: Original AP report of Lincoln’s assassination On the night Abraham Lincoln was shot, April 14, 1865, Associated Press...

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Somebody Remembered Appomattox
Apr09

Somebody Remembered Appomattox

Sure glad the South lost that war. The New York Times remembers that 150 years ago, Lee surrendered to Grant at Appomattox Court House. Lee Surrendered, But His Lieutenants Kept Fighting Elizabeth R. Varon / New York Times “If the programme which our people saw set on foot at Appomattox Court-House had been carried out … we would have no disturbance in the South,” testified the former Confederate general (and future senator)...

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The Last Battle That Counted
Apr06

The Last Battle That Counted

A suggestion for a national holiday? Make the Confederacy’s Defeat a National Holiday Brian Beutler / The New Republic —  150 years ago this week, Robert E. Lee surrendered to the Union.  Let’s celebrate it—every year.  —  In a speech one month ago, the first black president of the United States challenged millions of white Americans to resist the convenient allure … Good thought, but jumping the gun on today, in many...

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Hypocrisy Springs Eternal
Apr03

Hypocrisy Springs Eternal

Listen: Iran Accuses U.S. of Lying About New Nuke Agreement Adam Kredo / Washington Free Beacon LAUSANNE, Switzerland — Just hours after the announcement of what the United States characterized as a historic agreement with Iran over its nuclear program, the country’s leading negotiator lashed out at the Obama administration for lying … Wait a minute! The WHOLE contention of the treasonous Right (colluders with the head of a...

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An April Fool’s Story
Apr01

An April Fool’s Story

The fool in question being me. I had not known until today that former Miss America Mary Ann Mobley had died back on December 9th. And I was immediately reminded of the story of the only connection that she and I ever had. Back in 1978, I was just starting my second year in Hollywood–an absurd notion that I could be a writer that EVERY adult in my life, save one, my beloved Aunt Mary, who passed away nearly a year ago, told me...

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An Historical Cycle Ends
Mar30

An Historical Cycle Ends

CNN Money, that most astute of websites, tracked down recent blog retiree and superstar Andrew Sullivan, who gave an interview, probably, prefacing the publication of his book, which will keep him in the media crosshairs: Andrew Sullivan: Blogging nearly killed me Tom Kludt / CNNMoney For years, Andrew Sullivan blogged at a prolific rate.  —  His prodigious output was supplemented by dispatches from readers, public debates with fellow...

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My Health Care Five Years Ago Today
Mar24

My Health Care Five Years Ago Today

UPDATED BELOW “Odious” health insurance is now “MODA” as in “MODA Center” where  the Portland Trailblazers play with other NBA teams when they’re home. Ted is about to find out that he can’t enroll until next year. Like me. Ted Cruz to sign up for government health care Jennifer Jacobs / Des Moines Register Ted Cruz, one of the loudest critics of Obamacare, will soon be using it for...

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Published: Reality 101 — Political Self Defense for Progressives
Mar21

Published: Reality 101 — Political Self Defense for Progressives

Published: Reality 101 — Political Self Defense for Progressives I’ve been away while finishing the details of this book. But, in the face of the most idiotic headline of all time, it’s time to return to the fray: Republicans Learn to Play Hardball Kimberley A. Strassel / Wall Street Journal It has been my intention to collect the best of ten years’ “vorpal sword” columns into a series of ebooks....

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Defending Treason
Mar10

Defending Treason

Today, the Right Wing blogosphere, responding in their classic school-yard bully manner, defended the indefensible breach of American political tradition dating back to the John Adams Administration: A war of Obama’s making  Byron York / Washington Examiner The White House and some Democrats are livid over congressional Republican attempts to circumvent President Obama’s authority to make a nuclear arms deal with Iran. ...

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Disinformation Ahead of Bibi’s Visit? Seems likely.
Mar02

Disinformation Ahead of Bibi’s Visit? Seems likely.

This morning, Memeorandum is dominated by a rightie blogswarm, all focused on this Reuters story: Report: Obama Threatened to Shoot Down IAF Iran Strike Mark Langfan / Reuters Kuwaiti paper claims unnamed Israeli minister with good ties with the US administration ‘revealed the attack plan to John Kerry.’  —  The Bethlehem-based news agency Ma’an has cited a Kuwaiti newspaper report Saturday … A Bethlemen-based “news...

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An Open Letter to Mr. Obama and Mr. Bush
Feb19

An Open Letter to Mr. Obama and Mr. Bush

Saladin (1138-1193) on 25 Pound 1991 Banknote from Syria. First Sultan of Egypt and Syria. A Kurd, he led Muslim opposition against Crusaders. [SYRIA – CIRCA 1991; Georgios Kollidas/Shutterstock.com] If there is any shared value between our secular and religiously tolerant political system and the movement known as “Christianity,” it is this: redemption is always possible. Even up to the gates of Hell, Goethe tells...

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MSNBC Falls on Hard Times
Feb04

MSNBC Falls on Hard Times

I talked about this in my very last blog post, November 5’s “The End of the Trail.” Inside MSNBC’s Impending Shakeup: Cancellations, Reboots and Chief Phil Griffin Jordan Chariton / The Wrap Amid the cable news network’s declining ratings, insiders tell TheWrap changes are coming soon and “everything is on the table”  —  When President Obama was reelected in 2012, MSNBC was “leaning forward” … Yes. After...

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Boehner’s Blatant Lie: Does the Truth Matter? At ALL?
Jan29

Boehner’s Blatant Lie: Does the Truth Matter? At ALL?

The quaint notion that “partisanship ends at the water’s edge” continues to plague a few journalists and other inconsequential figures as the GOP does their best impression of Aristophanes’ sophists in The Frogs. Administration Official Criticizes Israeli Ambassador Over Netanyahu Visit Julie Hirschfeld Davis / New York Times WASHINGTON — The Obama administration, after days of mounting tension, signaled on...

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The Persecution and Assassination of Jonathan Chait as Performed by the Inmates of the Asylum of the Intertubes Under the Direction of the Marquis de Sade
Jan27

The Persecution and Assassination of Jonathan Chait as Performed by the Inmates of the Asylum of the Intertubes Under the Direction of the Marquis de Sade

Seldom has a point been so pointedly made by pointy heads. Not a Very P.C. Thing to Say Jonathan Chait / New York Magazine —  How the language police are perverting liberalism.  —  Around 2 a.m. on December 12, four students approached the apartment of Omar Mahmood, a Muslim student at the University of Michigan, who had recently published a column in a school newspaper about his perspective as a minority on campus…. Jonathan...

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