November 14, 2005

I'd be riding horses if they let me

drive me down, by dronepop

* top ten conservative idiots. excerpt:

"3.George W. Bush

"Yes, new documents revealed last week demonstrate that not only were Democrats in the House and Senate seriously misled by Bush administration propaganda, but Colin Powell himself might not have been given the full picture.

"The declassified CIA documents show that the Bush administration's own intelligence community had serious doubts about claims that Al Qaeda and Saddam Hussein were working together, even as administration officials were making those claims publicly. The documents were only recently provided to Sen. Carl Levin, a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, which kinda undercuts Our Great Leader's claim that everyone had access to the same intelligence.

"According to Newsweek, "The new documents also raise the possibility that caveats raised by intelligence analysts about (intelligence source) al-Libi's claims were withheld from Powell when he was preparing his Security Council speech. Larry Wilkerson, who served as Powell's chief of staff and oversaw the vetting of Powell's speech, responded to an e-mail from Newsweek Wednesday stating that he was unaware of the CIA doubts about al-Libi at the time the speech was being prepared."

"Oh, sure the Democratic senators and representatives, along with the secretary of state, all had access to the same intelligence - it just happened to be missing a few pieces, that's all. Nothing important. Just the bits that proved the whole thing was bullshit."

* Kurt Vonnegut's birthday was Friday (happy belated!) Backwards City Review celebrated by posting enough links etc. (including the excellent piece Vonnegut did for Backwards City Review #1) to keep fans busy for a while.

* "All my plays are rewriting that same story. I'm not sure what it means, other than life is hard." -August Wilson

* Did the SF Chronicle plagiarize the New Yorker? [via] excerpt:

"Now, this whole thing may seem like nitpicky quibbling for those who haven't gone to J-school (well, I haven't, but my mother did...and close dissection of the newspaper was the dinnertime ritual in my house while I was growing up), but this is an issue of trust. As one of my print reporter friends put it, not attributing the quotes gives the reader the sense that the reporter is conversing with the subject himself...and when that trust is broken, it hurts the journalism business. I agree."

"As journalists, we don't make widgets that can stand or fall on their intrinsic merits. (You can check Consumer Reports to see what the good and bad products are, to see if the car you're about to buy is likely to be a peach or a lemon.) We make little squiggles on paper that winds up at the bottom of the birdcage the next day, or evanescent streams of electrons that escape the atmosphere at the speed of light. So the maintenance of that trust is even more important than with physical products."

"There's no way to return your newspaper or the nightly broadcast, even if you kept the receipt. Journalists deal with intangibles like reputation and trust all the time, because in a reader's (or a viewer's) mind, you're only as good as your last story. And if there's anything in there to erode that confidence -- whether something as small as a dumb typo in an onscreen graphic or something as big as Jayson Blair-style widespread fakery -- then the entire organization (not to mention journalism as a whole) is diminished as a result."

* Montreal politician's poll numbers increase after he revealed his prior cocaine use.

* got crayons? here's an x-rated coloring book.


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