July 3, 2006

Jesus, Take the Wheel

Filed under: politics — ted @ 4:15 pm

In honor of tomorrow’s celebration, this afternoon’s post will have an actual focus — America.

First, the bad news:

1. The Brits hate us. This fact has become pretty clear in recent years, but a new poll reveals some shocking numbers:

The YouGov poll found that 77 percent of respondents disagreed with the statement that the US is “a beacon of hope for the world”.

US President George W. Bush fared significantly worse, with just one percent rating him a “great leader” against 77 percent who deemed him a “pretty poor” or “terrible” leader.

More than two-thirds who offered an opinion said America is essentially an imperial power seeking world domination. And 81 per cent of those who took a view said President George W Bush hypocritically championed democracy as a cover for the pursuit of American self-interests.

2. The CIA wants to decide what’s news and what’s not. The National Security Archive filed a suit two weeks ago against the CIA, noting that “the CIA last year began claiming authority to assess additional fees if the Agency decides any journalist’s request is not newsworthy enough.”

“The CIA takes the position that it should decide what is ‘news’ instead of the reporters and editors who research and publish the stories,” explained attorney Patrick J. Carome of the law firm Wilmer Hale, who is representing the Archive. “If the CIA succeeds in exercising broad discretion to charge additional fees to journalists, despite the plain language of the law, then too often we will find out only what the government wants us to know.”


“This policy is a clear attempt to prevent journalists from getting information out to the public,” said Archive Director Thomas Blanton. “Given the timing – when the intelligence community is under serious scrutiny about its activities – this appears to be an effort to shut down the growth of a vibrant public debate in the print, broadcast and online communities.”

3. One representative voting on the Net Neutrality bill doesn’t know what the Internet is. At least Senator Ted Stevens (R-Alaska) knows “the internet is not something you just dump something on. It’s not a truck.” Unfortunately, he believes it’s “a series of tubes.” Here’s his chief complaint against the Internet

I just the other day got, an internet was sent by my staff at 10 o’clock in the morning on Friday and I just got it yesterday. Why?

Because it got tangled up with all these things going on the internet commercially.

Considering that he received the entire Internet, I think the timeline he outlines is reasonable.

4. George Bush’s activities bear an uncanny resemblance to those of King George III. In a post on the Liberal Populist, Daniel took portions of the Declaration of Independence and substituted Bush’s name for George III’s. It’s frightening stuff:

President Bush has obstructed the administration of justice by refusing to follow and enforce laws that establish proper judiciary review and schemes of jurisdiction.

President Bush has affected to render the military independent of and superior to the power and will of the people.

But what about the good news?

Well, Carrie Underwood is kind of cool, and she likes to sing about independence:

And flag burning is still legal, at least for now. So, in a gesture of patriotism:

Happy 4th, folks.


1 Comment »

  1. Hmm, you raise a valuable thought here at the end: If they somehow manage to pass a flag-burning amendment, that means that one day we’ll be able to look back with sentimentality on “the old Fourths” when we burned flags without getting arrested. I’ve never had any particular desire to burn the flag before (except when one kicks the bucket, which is actually how you’re supposed to honorably dispose of it), but nothing kindles the desire like prohibition.

    That Wired story is just flippin’ scary.

    My Independence Day wish for you is that one day Carrie Underwood lets you inside her heaven. (Don’t tell yer ladyfriend I said that.)

    Comment by Daniel Klotz — July 3, 2006 @ 10:51 pm

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