Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Ellie Light Revealed? (Well, Maybe...)

HazZzMat Newsflash! This Just In! Dateline: Cleveland?

The online website of the Cleveland Plain Dealer has just revealed the top-secret identity of Obama propagandist "Ellie Light." I think.
Ellie Light, the ubiquitous letter writer whose name appeared in newspapers nationwide praising President Barack Obama, appears to really be a male health care worker from California.
A man who identified himself as Winston Steward, 51, of Frazier Park, Calif., says he made up the name "Ellie Light" to protect himself from criticism and possible physical attacks, and used fake addresses across the country to get local newspapers to publish his letters.
Reporter Stephen Koff details the paper's contacts with "Winston Steward" and his wife (or maybe not), "Barbara Brooks," who covered for him, apparently, on the telephone early on in this cat-and-mouse game.

The paper appears to have done its due diligence and tracked "Steward" down in California and "Brooks" down in Texas. But the story is as nutty as a fruitcake, and who knows who really established the cover for this whole charade? That includes "Light's" new identity as "Steward," who seems convinced that right-wing crazies will kill or maim him if they find him. Read the rest here. Gawker has a credible alternate version of the story that's the same only different. The site also includes an alleged picture of "Steward" and a helpful link to his wife's (or ex-wife's) Facebook page.



Riehl World has outed "Steward" as a being member of the nefarious HuffPo for nearly a year, proving the alleged indifference he feigns in the PD piece toward hardcore lefties has a faint odor of insincerity about it. Patterico plugs in more details plus a juicy possible connection with the White House--this via a linkback to Riehl referencing the 2050 PR firm (which has magically gone offline save for a revolving globe logo). Oh, yeah, he also mentions that Ben Smith has audio of the "Ellie" encounter.

Meanwhile, Ben Smith (the real one) updates the mess here in Politico, inferring the blogosphere went nuts about nuthin'. Well, hell, Ben, maybe we did and maybe we didn't, but let's follow this to the bitter end, just for fun.

The PD may very well have smoked "Ellie" out, more or less. But there's more to this story than just an eccentric lefty wingnut. Or two. So I'm sticking with the criminal profile I established in one of my earlier followup entries until we get the real final story on Ellie-Winston-Barbara and who he, she, or it really is.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

If I Were "Ellie Light"...More Clues to the Puzzle

Is the Now-Legendary "Ellie Light" Astroturfer a Grammar Goddess?

One of the frustrating things about co-running a blog like this is that I can only do it part-time and with limited resources. For this reason, I can only contribute educated speculation to the ongoing blogger investigation into the identity of mystery pro-Obama astroturfer "Ellie Light." I've already deduced that the occurrence of the Light Brigade neatly coincided with the arrival of Obama's former campaign manager David Plouffe in the Washington Post's op-ed pages this past Sunday--an appearance that had to have been choreographed in advance. Just like the "Ellie Light" op-ed campaign.

Both Plouffe and partner-in-crime, Obama insider David Axelrod are pretty well known for their encouragement of/involvement in astroturfing during the long 2008 election campaign. So I've been thinking that one or both of them are at least peripherally involved in the current flap.

Follow me, now. Both these guys, along with their staffers, are well versed in the arts of communication and mis-communication. Among other things, they and any staff they might hire are presumed masters of the English language, twisting it and molding it to suit their needs. But like any really smart writer/communicator dudes, they can make mistakes. And I think someone has made a mistake here.

Fox News online updates the "Ellie Light" story today, quoting the following paragraph from "her" letter--one that's already made the rounds. I'm inserting it below. Read it carefully:
"But today, the president is being attacked as if he were a salesman who promised us that our problems would wash off in the morning. He never made such a promise. It's time for Americans to realize that governing is hard work, and that a president can't just wave a magic wand and fix everything."
That first sentence is really interesting. The clause "as if he were a salesman" is in what used to be called the "subjunctive mood" back when I was in school. And, as a former English professor myself, I still employ this construction, at least in formal documents.

However, for better or ill, statistically, no one bothers with this distinctive form anymore, at least in the US. (The Brits still use it with great regularity.) Grammar is no longer rigorously taught in American schools, which is why our speech and writing habits have coarsened considerably since the 1950s. Most Americans in the above written excerpt would have said (or written) "if he was a salesman." "Were" is rarely employed by the vast majority of American speakers and writers in this context.

Ergo, unless "Ellie Light" is a Brit (or a well-educated member of the British Commonwealth), he/she is probably a well educated American and very possibly a professional writer. He/she also doesn't pal around with the actual proletariat much either. Otherwise, he/she would have long ago abandoned the formal subjunctive which is viewed by the average man on the street as a kind of haughty affectation.

Which brings us back to "Ellie Light." Fox reports that:
A woman claiming to be Light called into Michael Smerconish's Philadelphia radio show Tuesday morning. On the show, a clip of which was posted on Politico.com, she described herself as a "traveling nurse" and admitted to fabricating hometown addresses.
The woman who called may or may not be a phony, although this individual did at least fess up to the obvious--namely, that "Ellie" fabricated hometown addresses. Yet I'm not so sure that a "traveling nurse"--no offense to a highly educated profession--would be so natural and precise with the formal subjunctive in his/her writing. I think this phone call was another smokescreen.

To me, this subtle little clue gives us some insight into the skillsets and perhaps the profession of the "Ellie Light" writer. "Ellie" is well-educated, writes with far greater skill than the average American, and is likely a member in good standing of the political/social elite. "Ellie's" communications have all the hallmarks of a professional communicator. The average American don't write so good no more. Ironically, though, as a member of the elite class, this writer wouldn't have thought to cover his/her tracks by employing a little "lower class" grammar to throw off the hounds in the blogosphere.

I.e., we are indeed being hoodwinked by a pro or a team of pros. I leave it to more technically adept bloggers--who can actually trace phone calls or full email headers--to eventually expose the actual astroturfer. But my guess is, they won't have to stray very far from the Plouffe-Axelrod clubhouse to find the guilty dude/dudette.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Dennis "The Menace" Kucinich Sides With Tea Party?

From HazZzMat's "Now I've Seen Everything" Department

As readers of this blog know, I've been irritated most of my adult life at Dennis Kucinich, once boy mayor of my hometown, Cleveland, and now, unfortunately, essentially serving as Cleveland's sole Representative in Congress since the town's shrunk so much over the last 40 years.

Dennis is a demagogue, a socialist, and a narcissist, imagining every four years that the nation will want to elevate him to our highest office. Sadly, Dennis is shooting too low. Our current President, most likely a secret Marxist, beat him to the punch, big time. Sic transit, baby.

However, Dennis must know something about what makes his largely working-class constituents tick. Otherwise, they'd have thrown him out of office a long time ago. I think I've begun to pick up on what this factor might be via an interesting blog post. It unveils the genuinely populist side of Dennis the Menace, as opposed to the faux populist who sits in the Oval Office today.

Blogger Doug Ross notes Kucinich's recent CNBC appearance, citing this coverage from the National Ledger:
...He went as far as to mention the Tea Party movement in a separate interview, warning fellow Dems on the Ed Schultz Show not to ignore financial issues.

"I met with people who were, you know, unfairly ridiculed as being just a bunch of teabaggers and frankly they had basic economic concerns just like everyone else, they felt that government wasn't listening to them, and this is where the Democratic Party better wake up," he told the radio audience.
In the words of one of my old Great Lakes Merchant Marine buddies, "Truer words was never spoke."

Comments Ross:
Now that we've established that Dennis Kucinich is to the right of the current Democrat Party leadership, I think it's safe to say that the country is in some really, really deep s***.

Although, to be fair, last June the American Thinker's Randall Hoven warned us what to expect. Executive Summary: I'll see you in the rice paddies, comrade.

More on Mr. Plouffe and His Plouffe-ters

Can Obama Fool the People the Second Time Around?

As I mentioned in my previous post, I am beginning to wonder if the "Ellie Light" propaganda phenomenon signals the almost under-the-radar return of Obama's 2008 campaign chief, David Plouffe, to the center of this already highly politicized White House. Plouffe, David Axelrod, and numerous other despicable left-wingers--aided and abetted by media types in the tank for Obama from the get-go--were responsible for running the virtually information-free campaign that got their man into the White House. They waged imaginary battles with imaginary villains to distract the electorate from the real villains--themselves. And they succeeded brilliantly.

Their tactics were pure Saul Alinsky: having spent plenty of pre-campaign time working with the willing media to vilify and undercut President Bush throughout his second term, the Obama campaign carefully froze the phony Bush image in place and ran against it, smearing and slandering all the way. As to their opponents, they were secondary issues. They avoided attacking John McCain, a genuine war hero, directly for the most part and focused on the hapless Sarah Palin, re-inventing her as the kind of clueless idiot that would follow in Bush's footsteps if she were elected. The fact that she wasn't running for president wasn't important to them. The vilification was.

All Republicans running for office in 2008 were recast as clones of Bush. A transparently idiotic bit of chicanery on the surface, but it worked, proving that you can indeed fool all of the people at least some of the time.

The result: between George Bush and Sarah Palin, these Alinskyites created a collective comic book villain that inspired tens of thousands of young voters to pull the Democrat lever for probably the first and last time they will ever vote. The result: an astoundingly unsophisticated president with no executive experience who's now demagoguing furiously about fiscal matters best treated with extreme delicacy. Are you ready for more of this? Are you ready for another stock market crash tomorrow?

Obama may very well endanger our entire socioeconomic system. But why should he care? It'll just hasten the revolution that should have happened a long time ago. And to make sure it happens this time, the Chicago Messiah has brought back his old campaign team to start doing advance work for this fall.

Belmont Club's perspicacious Richard Fernandez unintentionally sets the table for an answer by citing an unusually credible piece in the NY Times:
Perhaps stemming from his earlier belief that he had “lost touch” with a fearful electorate, one of President Obama’s first moves in the wake of the Massachusetts debacle was to reshuffle his political operatives and put them on a permanent campaign footing.
In addition to Mr. Plouffe, who will primarily work from the Democratic National Committee in consultation with the White House, several top operatives from the Obama campaign will be dispatched across the country to advise major races as part of the president’s attempt to take greater control over the midterm elections, aides said.
“We are turning the corner to a much more political season,” said David Axelrod, a senior adviser to the president, who confirmed Mr. Plouffe’s role. “We are going to evaluate what we need to do to get timely intelligence and early warnings so we don’t face situations like we did in Massachusetts.”
Additionally, Fernandez cites the remarks of longtime liberal businessman Morty Zuckerman in this context. Zuckerman, along with the bulk of the East Coast's Wall Street fat cats, joyously pulled the lever for Obama in November, 2008. All of them, like the kiddie corps just cited, acted as if the election were just a big party where they could celebrate just how progressive they were by "making history." Now they're having a serious case of buyers' remorse. (The kids have gone back to their video games and saving the world through rock concerts.)

Zuckerman laments the sheer mendacity of Obama's and the Democrats' ultimate excuse for a national healthcare plan:
Five states got deals on health care—one of them was Harry Reid’s. It is disgusting, just disgusting. I’ve never seen anything like it. The unions just got them to drop the tax on Cadillac plans in the health-care bill. It was pure union politics. They just went along with it. It’s a bizarre form of political corruption. It’s bribery. I suppose they could say, that’s the system. He was supposed to change it or try to change it. …Focus on cost-containment first. But he’s trying to boil the ocean, trying to do too much. This is not leadership.
Fernandez takes the ball here and runs with it, offering one of the more cogent observations I've read recently about what's currently going on:
Zuckerman’s words — a man who voted for him — and the rejection by Massachusetts — the most liberal state in the country — echo through the debate. Sharpening the message and leadership style are not basic enough. Here’s a President who may have made the mistake of putting politics, not policy at the center of things. And repeating the mistake with greater emphasis isn’t necessarily a solution. He can send for his conjurers again and create the mightiest permanent campaigning machine history has ever seen. But they won’t bring back the magic. That requires performance in the areas of policy and governance.
The really worrisome thing is if the President can’t change as opposed to won’t change. If politics is all he knows and all he is good at then 2010 will be a rough year indeed, not just for Obama, but for everybody.
Amen to that. Even on the road in Elyria, Ohio, the President pretty much indicated that he won't change. God help us all.

The hits will keep on coming. Even more about Plouffe and other underground types in a future post. And they thought Karl Rove was a bad guy.

Charge of the (Ellie) Light Brigade Part Deux

Could David Plouffe Be the Ghost in the "Ellie Light" Machine?

A few entries ago, we discussed the emergence of a letter-writing sockpuppet engaged in a dishonest PR campaign on behalf of the currently hapless Barack Obama. "Ellie Light" (most probably not "her" real name) seems to be a resident of dozens of jurisdictions across the United States from which "she""mails" or emails essentially the same quite literate letter backing the blundering President and his blundering administration to the hilt.

The blogosphere has been on this like a horde of hungry people descending upon a free buffet meal. Updates here, here, and here.

As for me? I have just come up with a theory--it's still just that. I'm simply not quite sure how to delve into it. Follow me on this.

I read yesterday where a fellow named David Plouffe has just been put on the White House payroll to effectively do damage control, given the kind of disastrous week this administration has just endured caused for itself. Does the name sound familiar? It should.

Plouffe was the successful campaign manager for the Obama-Biden ticket in 2008. He was essentially their propagandist-in-chief in that a major part of the Obama campaign was geared toward creating a mythical figure who could win as the perfect superhero antidote to the MSM-demonized George W. Bush. I.e., the guy ran this campaign straight out of the Alinsky playbook and it worked. (Again, please read my previous post on "Ellie Light" linked above.)

If you following the links I provided above, you begin to see that the "Ellie Light" propaganda trail may, in fact, go back to similar phony pro-Obama letter writing astroturfing campaigns that surged nonstop through media outlets throughout the 2008 election cycle.

Fast forward to today's Washington Post op-ed section. What to our wondering eyes does appear? A huge, detailed propaganda manifesto masquerading as an opinion piece by none other than: David Plouffe. Let's see--we hear late last week that this guy is joining the administration as an advisor. His op-ed appears in the Sunday Post, which, like most newspapers, fleshes out its Sunday columns by midweek and puts these pages to bed on Friday night so it's available for stuffing into the Sunday sections.

In other words, it's a virtual certainty that Plouffe and his stooges in the Post editorial room engineered this timely propaganda surge even before Plouffe's appointment was announced. Yet to the uninitiated, Plouffe's puff piece seems like a real scoop, timely and fortuitous. But its timing, combined with a working knowledge of the news cycle, indicates it was written early last week. It was carefully planned for maximum effect not long after the Massachusetts election results were out and perhaps even sooner. This kind of placement is the work of a real professional.

If Plouffe was already doing this kind of advanced planning before anyone in the public realized he was back on Team Obama, I'm wondering if he might actually be the one behind the "Ellie Light" propaganda surge, which is probably a harbinger of even more of this kind of stuff.

I'll rebut the Plouffe propaganda piece itself in a later blog entry. It's pure, left wing propaganda, and I'll explain how it's done. Meanwhile, if anyone has better search resources than I do, I think there's a real scoop out there just waiting to be revealed.

More ClimateGate Scandal: UN and Nobel in Crosshairs

More Dishonesty Bad Science Exposed in UN Report

We haven't flogged "global warming" "climate change" for awhile, so let's catch up. Seems a UN report that actually copped a Nobel Prize for its absurdly extremist claims, was (surprise!) based on erroneous material. And the amount of this material, apparently, grows daily.

To wit, a report from the UN's Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) claimed that the entire Himalayan glacier would melt by circa 2035--just 25 years from now. On the heels of the East Anglia-based ClimateGate scandal, we recently discovered that this report--whose conclusions are patently ridiculous if you think about it--was based on questionable data. Who knew?

Now the UN official in charge is in full coverup/damage control mode:
The Indian head of the UN climate change panel defended his position yesterday even as further errors were identified in the panel's assessment of Himalayan glaciers.
Dr Rajendra Pachauri dismissed calls for him to resign over the Inter-governmental Panel on Climate Change’s retraction of a prediction that Himalayan glaciers could disappear by 2035.
It's interesting that where the UN is concerned, the kinds of catastrophic errors that would get you or me fired within seconds should never be cause for an in competent bureaucrat's head to roll. In this case, Pachauri is responding to the discovery of even more errors in the UN snowjob report. And he's in a fighting mood:
“I know a lot of climate sceptics are after my blood, but I’m in no mood to oblige them,” he told The Times in an interview. “It was a collective failure by a number of people,” he said. “I need to consider what action to take, but that will take several weeks. It’s best to think with a cool head, rather than shoot from the hip.”
That's it! Those rotten "climate sceptics!" There's the problem. Next thing we'll discover is that Bush did it. You can just hear Pachauri's wheels grinding. "Hmm. If I can just stall long enough, this whole thing will blow away." 

Read the rest of this absurdly bad attempt at defending the indefensible by following the link above.

America Rising: Online Political Phenomenon

Anti-Dem, Tea Party Inspired Video Will Travel

The following video--decrying most of the things we decry here about the current socialist state of affairs in our nation's capital--is proliferating all over the net, so we're aiding and abetting said proliferation here. Not sure what the origin is. And no one here at HazZzMat ever voted for any single one of these clowns in 2008 as the author of the video seems to have done. Nonetheless, with the standard wordless chorus in the background, this video "letter" sums up the current electoral mood quite dramatically.

If you essentially agree with the sentiments in the video, feel free to send it along yourselves via email or blogs.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Obama vs. Capitalism: Take Three

Continuing Wisdom from the Proletariat

Via Instapundit. The succinct version of what we disgorged in our previous post:
GEE, THANKS MR. OBAMA: Reader David Davila writes:
Wednesday-Friday, the Dow lost 552 points, or 5.2 percent.

Thanks Mr. President!

Your new tilting at windmills ploy, errr, bad mouthing Wall Street, just blew up my 401(k), not to mention my other investments. Again. Right after they were just about even with the pounding they took a year or so ago. What a stellar job this administration is doing. Riiiight…

About now, I’m thinking if I wanted something screwed up, I can trust the Chicago boys to come through.
Click the link above to read the rest. Good job, dude.

Obama vs. Capitalism: Take Two

Obama Fights to Save Bernanke--Law of Unintended Consequences

If you read our post on Obama's trashing of the big banks earlier this week, you'll easily note our displeasure. It crashed the hell out of a precariously toppy stock market, wiping out plenty of  middle-class retirement money--money only recently recovered from the twin market debacles of 2008-2009. Some of it included my own. To paraphrase what they used to say in WWII: "Loose Lips Lose Lives."

Making matters worse, Obama's faux-populist anti-capitalist crusade has emboldened Senators on both sides of the aisle to gang up on Fed Chief Ben Bernanke, threatening to derail his confirmation vote which must be held before the end of the month. Without confirmation, Bernanke must immediately step down on February 1 with uncertain consequences after that.

Obama himself has figured this out and is trying to repair the damage to his nominee. So has the recalcitrant and possibly brain-dead Harry Reid. Both are now trying to salvage this nomination, put on hold by at least four senators from both sides of the aisle. His nomination now effectively requires 60 votes to confirm.

Immediate consequences of this ridiculous political snarl? Another thorough trashing of the market on Friday when it dawned on already-spooked traders that Bernanke's re-appointment may not happen.

Flush!

Regardless of what you think of Uncle Ben--and I think he and the Fed were too slow to react to the early warning signs of the real estate debacle in 2007--he came through ultimately as a creative genius who did the opposite of what Herbert Hoover did after the Crash of 1929 and what the sainted FDR did again in 1937. He flooded the market with credit and worked with the Treasury to mount a massive intervention to buck up the major financial institutions. The ultimate object was to halt a potential run on the banking system along with incipient deflation. That's a far more difficult beast to control than inflation as anyone who survived the 1930s will tell you.

What Wall Street detests is uncertainty. But this administration has provided plenty of it. First, they pushed the first "stimulus bill" early in 2009--a boondoggle primarily aimed to shore up the public employees' unions by sending essentially bankrupt states enough money to keep paying their inflated salaries for another year.

Second, they wasted an entire year trying to ram through a socialized medicine plan containing more pork than real medicine, losing time to solve the employment problem their "stimulus" never addressed. Worse, their very fixation on "healthcare" has put businesses small and large into lockdown mode. Why? Once again, like Wall Street, businesses large and small abhor uncertainty, particularly of the Federal kind.

What terrifies businesses large and small is the forced addition, via Federal government edicts, of larger and larger mandatory employee benefit packages and related taxes, fines, etc. All increase the cost of doing business and would make the hiring of new employees by small businesses prohibitively expensive. The reaction of most businesses has been to hold off hiring new employees even if they're needed. They're terrified that, in a delicate economy, mandatory benefits additions will drive them right out of business.

Our economic recovery, in spite of all these gaffes, is actually underway. But at this crucial inflection point, both the Democrats in Congress and the amateurs in the White House are, for purely political reasons, squabbling about details, still focusing on their own re-election campaigns, and are risking a double-dip recession with their obtuseness. In point of fact, most Dems in charge today either have very little experience in business. Or, like Team Obama, they're Marxists who want to go socialist and kill all businesses they or the government don't run. This is a recipe for disaster.

A focused economic team is needed behind the scenes to keep things on an even keel until the fall 2010 elections can effect genuine stabilization by throwing a lot of the Congressional obstructionists out. The only team available right now with the smarts and the know-how to keep what remains of our economy afloat is run by Uncle Ben. Like him or not, to throw him out in a faux populist fit of pique over last week's Senate race in Massachusetts, is a fatal misreading of voter sentiment. It risks a massive market crash that will equal or exceed those we've already scene. It may erase confidence in the markets for at least a generation.

Lefty Democrats don't care, of course, because for them, US capitalism is a post-colonial system of oppression that needs to be shut down anyway. Righty Republicans hate the fact that Bernanke flooded the earlier problem with money--ignorant of the fact that it was his only choice. Everyone in the middle--most of us--is being completely ignored. The country may want some elements of the system to be repaired, but they don't want the whole system trashed. At the end of the day, they still like it.

Mark this: If the Fools on the Hill keep this up, the market will waterfall like you've never seen it before. If Ben Bernanke is not reconfirmed next week, you'd better get your money into your mattress, because that will be about the only safe place left for it.

UPDATE: Looks like I'm not the only voice crying in the wilderness here. Jennifer Rubin writes:
Pundits debate whether Obama’s new populist red meat will “work” — that is, allow him to recover his political footing. But if he unnerves the markets and spooks investors, he’ll be in further trouble. After all, he might insist that the economy is all George W. Bush’s fault, but fewer and fewer voters are buying that. And if his own policies — spending with abandon, pursuing a junk-a-thon stimulus plan, spending a year on the job-killing ObamaCare and cap-and-trade, and now frightening the financial markets – have paralyzed employers, then he surely is accountable for those results.

Charge of the (Ellie) Light Brigade

HaZzZmat Discovers Left-wing Sock Puppets Back in Action

Someone named "Ellie Light" has written virtually the same pro-Obama letter-to-the-editor email to a growing number of newspapers across the country. Coincidence? Perhaps. Except that each "Ellie" has a local address in each newspaper's circulation area. Here's something from the normally incurious Cleveland Plain Dealer's online locale:
Variations of Light’s letter ran in Ohio’s Mansfield News Journal on Jan. 13, with Light claiming an address in Mansfield; in New Mexico’s Ruidoso News on Jan. 12, claiming an address in Three Rivers; in South Carolina’s The Sun News on Jan. 18, claiming an address in Myrtle Beach; and in the Daily News Leader of Staunton, Virginia on Jan. 15, claiming an address in Waynesboro. Her publications list includes other papers in Ohio, West Virginia, Maine, Michigan, IowaPennsylvania and California, all claiming separate addresses.
It took awhile to discover this, I surmise, because many newspapers no longer crosscheck such letters, email or otherwise. Nor do they insist on a working telephone number for verification. That's what happens when you have too many layoffs in the newsroom--but that's another blog topic.

The PD's Sabrina Eaton's got game, though, and knows the old rules of the journalistic road. She attempted several times to get "Light" to come clean on all the addresses. Each response was evasive and then responses stopped.

Politico's Ben Smith noticed the PD post and picked up on it, since he too had received an email from "Light":
It was one of several such e-mails I'd gotten from a Yahoo account under that name, and the author didn't respond to a request for more information. That which didn't really bother me — the author wasn't making any factual claims, or personal ones, just an argument.
Smith doesn't shed further light on "Light," but was clearly irritated to discover, via the PD post, what was obviously a clever mass-email, slightly re-worded and carefully re-addressed each time to obscure the nature of its author. And said author, in turn, is at best a pseudonym, at worst a sock puppet--perhaps even an Administration minion--trying to spread online astroturf to support a President badly battered this week by gaffes ranging from Massachusetts Miscues to Wall Street-destroying Bank Bashing. Interestingly, Smith notes:
A reader points out that "Ellie" is said to be a derivative of the Greek word for "light."
Hmm. More scurrilous propaganda, straight out of the Alinsky Playbook*? We shall see. Let there be "light."

UPDATE: Ed Driscoll adds even more newspapers to the growing list of Ellie Light astroturf recipients: 
With the help of my commenters, I have been keeping a running total at my blog of the places where Light’s letter has appeared. At last count, her letter has appeared in at least 42 newspapers in at least 20 different states.
More here in Hot Air. Including pithy comments.

(BTW, for those curious to learn more about how propagandistic language works, see my note below. Others can skip.)

  *Rules for Radicals: A Pragmatic Primer for Realistic Radicals (1971) Random House, ISBN 0-394-44341-1, Vintage books paperback: ISBN 0-679-72113-4.  Interestingly, although Alinsky is clearly Marxist-Stalinist-Gramsci-ite in his thinking, his carefully edited Wikipedia entry describes him this way: 'He is generally considered to be the founder of modern community organizing and has been compared to Thomas Paine as "one of the great American leaders of the nonsocialist left.'"

Don't always buy in to the wikis. Ghostly editors lurk in every corner. Parse this clever sentence from the entry above. "Generally considered." By whom? "Nonsocialist left"? Technically correct. Because Alinsky was an old-style Commie. Nice bit of editing. Gotta watch these people. Also duly note: the late, Chicago-based Alinsky founded modern "community organizing." And who's currently the nation's Community Organizer in Chief? Yep, Alinsky-trained (via Bill Ayers) Barack Obama, our current POTUS. "Community Organizer" is Marxist code for "Left-wing community agitator," aka "activist," the preferred media term for pretty much the same creature in full propaganda mode.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Careless Obama Trashes Banks, Tanks Market

What's a President to do when he swings at his third major political rescue mission in a row--Martha Coakley--and whiffs? Neither Virginia nor New Jersey voters heeded his pro-Democrat message, electing Republican governors in both states last fall after Obama visits. Et tu, Massachusetts?

So what do you do? You go out and trash the banks and destroy the stock market, that's what you do. That's populism, Obama style. Or maybe like Seinfeld. No hugging, no learning. After a big, pre-Brown celebratory rally Tuesday, the market caught a major downdraft on Wednesday before tanking, big time, today [January 21, 2010] as our amateur President mounted a full scale attack on the banks the Feds allegedly just saved. Check out the rhetorical hyperbole:

Flush!
President Obama on Thursday proposed new limits on the size and trading practices of big banks, saying he wanted to prevent a return to the "old practices" that led to the financial meltdown. "Never again will the American taxpayer be held hostage by a bank that is too big to fail,"  Obama said. The curbs, which are broad and would require congressional support, are part of measures to revamp the country's financial regulatory system....

Reaction on Wall Street was immediate. A stock selloff that began on worries about Obama's speech deepened even before he finished. The Dow Jones Industrials quickly fell more than 200 points. Big banks also were crushed by Obama's remarks.
They sure as hell were. And I was holding shares in some of them which lost me a lot of money today--money I'd made back inch by painful inch after losing plenty of it in early 2009 when the Administration's loose lips tanked the market the last time. What is this, an annual event meant to keep Americans poor and stupid? Do these morons ever learn? If you're allegedly trying to help people's retirement accounts recover and re-establish the kind of confidence that will lead to hiring by small businesses, what's the point of this counter-productive rhetoric?

The point is two-fold. In the first place, after the Tuesday disaster in Massachusetts, the Obama people, like lefties everywhere when confronted with defeat, find their metaphorical Jesus in the machine and start blaming rich capitalists for everything--all the better to distract the public from the economic disaster this adminstration is creating with its constant bafflegab.

Second of all, the Administration never really intended to mount much of a stimulus or recovery anyway until this year, all the better to look good to the electorate at precisely the right time and coast to victory in the midterm elections this fall. You and I are merely pawns--employed or not--as the levers are moved to create maximum advantage for Democrat incumbents in November 2010. Our lives are secondary to the Democrats retaining enough power to wreck American capitalism entirely before we can mount a rescue expedition.

Ironically, even as Obama trashes the banks, his minions reveal that--surprise--they really really HAVE been working like busy elves all along to save our economy. Only they're just telling us now about their heroic, behind the scenes efforts now. What a coincidence.

CNBC online is already trapped in the tractor beam of Team Obama's Spin Zone:
The White House in the new year already had begun focusing greater attention on the nation's angst and anger over a range of economic issues, including unemployment persisting near 10 percent, government expansion, Wall Street excesses and federal deficits....Obama and his top aides huddled with each other and Capitol Hill allies throughout Wednesday to plot how to rescue the health care legislation and to start mapping a way forward leading into this fall's midterm congressional elections.Their conclusion was that the economy — jobs specifically and the broader topics of the nation's fiscal and financial health — must be priority No. 1.
The economy's in trouble? Who knew? CNBC shills aside, Obamanation only "focused" on the economy after their time-wasting healthcare disaster blew up in their faces on Tuesday. Aside from socialism, it's beginning to look like the plan is, there ain't no plan.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

RIP Air America

This just in from CNN/Money:
NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) -- Liberal talk radio network Air America is planning to file for Chapter 7* bankruptcy, the company said Thursday.
The very difficult economic environment has had a significant impact on Air America's business," according to a statement on the network's Web site. It cited a "perfect storm" in the media industry and plummeting advertising revenues.
Air America, of course, was the Chicago-based lefty talk "network" underwritten by wealthy Marxists to drive Rush LimbaughSean Hannity, Mark Levin, and others off the airwaves with their superior "progressive" (read "Communist") material. "Personalities" included the odious Rachel Maddow (who graduated to the odious MSBNC) and the odious Al Franken (who, along with his Stalinist Democrat minions, counted ballots again and again in Minnesota until he stole "won" a senate seat there in 2008-9).

Needless to say, their nonstop propaganda fests never attracted a real audience and never came close to unseating Rush et. al. Money quickly dried up and affiliates dropped their money losing garbage-casts as quickly as they'd picked them up. The "network" was in trouble within months and was never much of a presence.

Marxists who hate capitalism with all their hearts--even rich ones (most of them)--don't seem to have much of a grasp as to how the system works and how competitive it is. It never occurred to them that with nearly 100% of newspapers, nearly 100% of TV newscasts, and a bucketload of bloggers preaching the same left-wing class struggle tripe 24/7 throughout the US, there was no need for left-wing talk radio.

Rush and company survive and prosper because they were (and still are) providing a uniquely valuable service available nowhere else. They were and still are competing against precisely no one, whereas lefties totally dominate the other media. Hence, zero need for more left-wing propaganda. Their economic model, such as it was, failed utterly for this obvious reason.
The statement went on to say that the company's debt was piling up as its credit lines shrank....Starting at 6 p.m. ET Thursday, Air America will broadcast "encore programming" though Jan. 25 and then cease to air.
Good riddance. Besides, if you want to hear this vapid crap, you can always catch Maddow being her hateful self every weeknight on MSNBC. And Minnesotans can catch Franken any time they want on C-Span. And then kick themselves for putting this hate-filled dope in the Senate to represent them for the next 6 years. What were they thinking?

  *Chapter 7, for those who aren't bankruptcy aficionados, is "liquidation," not reorganization. As John McLaughlin says, "Bye-bye!"

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Politico Can't Resist a Swipe at Brown

Politico has been providing pretty decent coverage of the current Massachusetts Miracle. But their team of reporters today couldn't resist the kind of smarmy editorializing that's given the news media a terminally bad name over the last decade or two. Check out the following 2 grafs from Politico's main morning-after story and you'll see what I mean:
"When there's trouble in Massachusetts, rest assured, there's trouble everywhere, and they know it," he said. "One thing is very, very clear as I traveled across this state. People do not want the trillion-dollar health care plan that is being forced on the American people, and this bill is not being debated openly and fairly. It will raise taxes, it will hurt Medicare, it will destroy jobs and run our nation deeper in to debt."
Democrats pushed back in different ways against Brown’s gloating.
 Okay, let's parse this.  First graf: As best I can tell, it's pretty much a direct quote from Brown's acceptance speech. I listened to it last night and found it crisp, dead on, and an accurate, if occasionally rambling and overlong, assessment of Brown's winning campaign and what it means.

Second graf: Short and sweet and embodies the tic that seems to affect the genes of all who populate the MSM. The problem is in the last word of the sentence: "gloating." That is, quite simply, editorializing of the snottiest kind. MSMers do this to Republicans all the time, working in each story to subtly undermine the character of their intended victims.

To re-state, the first graf above was what Brown said last night. But to characterize this as "gloating" is pure fantasy, a subtle bit of sliming meant to show that Brown has a "mean streak," which is how all evil Republicans are eventually characterized--mean-spirited. Now for all I know, Brown may have a mean streak. But he didn't show any such thing in the quoted material. His statement was, pure and simple, an accurate assessment of what he thought the voters were telling the Democrats last night as they awarded the "Kennedy seat" to a Republican. How stating a simple truth can be characterized as "gloating" is way beyond me, particularly when Brown went out of his way to pay his respects to the Kennedys--several times and without irony.

But he was rewarded in Politico with the kind of casual dissing that the left-wing MSM indulges in all the time, a Gramscian recasting of an objective narrative to support the left-wing "narrative" which characterizes all conservatives and Republicans as base and evil beings who need to be hated and mistrusted at all times.

Either "gloating" was chosen specifically by the authors of this piece as a sneaky way to smear Brown. Or else "gloating" appeared almost autonomically, the kind of characterization that's not premeditated but sneaks in without reflection, so ingrained is the bias behind it. Brown's quoted remarks were in fact a "statement," an "explanation," or an "assessment." In no way was Brown "gloating" except in the realm of left-wing fantasists.

HazZzMat's original and ongoing intent has been to expose the cheap rhetorical tricks that the left uses to obscure the truth, to change the perceived narrative, and to smear anyone who gets in its way. This particular instance, appearing in an otherwise decent story, is a classic example of how the media undermines itself each and every day through its rhetorical dishonesty.

In a way, Brown's victory last night proved that the great unwashed are much smarter than any of the condescending elites ever thought. In spite of generations of Marxist, blame-Amerikka-first  indoctrination in schools, newspapers, magazines, TV shows, and films, the public seems to have retained its collective shit-detector, and that was in evidence last night in Massachusetts. Clearly, the proles now know that Obama and the media fooled them pretty good in 2008. I think they're not going to let this happen again.

(Read the whole Politico story here.)

Massachusetts Electoral Map the Morning After

Interesting electoral map showing how Massachusetts' votes were distributed in last night's Scott Brown US Senate landslide. Typically, the cities--as is generally true across the country--go for the Democrats whatever the 'Rats are doing to them. They never learn and do what they are told. You can also spot the die-hard rich lefty enclaves on the Cape, Martha's Vineyard (no pun intended), and Nantucket. Suburban voters generally are more conservative, even in this bluest of blue states. (Click on map to enlarge.) Repubs need to study maps like this a lot more deeply as they attempt to develop winning strategies this fall to unseat the current Socialist majority on the Hill. (Map courtesy of Twitpic via RedState. UPDATE: Original interactive version available here.)


Oh, and those same Republicans might want to take a look at Scott Brown's message--one strong enough to destroy the last vestiges of the Kennedy's phony Camelot myth. Namely, the people are tired of tax and spend. Particularly when they're not making any money. If the tax and spend Republicans had figured this out in 2006, we wouldn't be discussing this now. But they forgot why they were elected. Just like the Democrats have today.

Dems React to Brown Upset Victory


MSNBC's Maddow Chokes Down Coakley Defeat in Mass. Pub

One of the few times I've ever enjoyed, let alone watched, a "news" report on CNBC.


Brown Wins. Obamacare DOA.

'Nuff said. The people have spoken. In the unlikeliest of places.

Kind of fitting, though, that the second major tax revolt in this country's history scored a memorable victory in the home state of the first.

Welcome back, Massachusetts!

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Support Obama, Get a New Job!

This just in from Reuters:

"Obama's Top Priority Is to Boost Jobs"

Yep, that's the headline. But wait, there's more!
President Barack Obama's top goal as he enters a second year in office is to lift U.S. job creation and revitalize the economy, the White House said on Tuesday.


"The top priority is to continue to work hard on getting this economy back on track and creating jobs," White House spokesman Robert Gibbs told a news briefing.

Obama, who completes a year at the White House this week, has suggested a second round of job creation initiatives on top of a $787 billion emergency stimulus he signed in February 2009...
More union featherbedding, of course, just like the first one. Funny we get this headline on the day that, win or lose, Massachusetts Senatorial candidate Scott Brown destroys Obamacare in its tracks. Talk about quickly changing the subject...

Judy Woodruff: Potential Brown Win "A Tragedy of Greek Proportions"

"Nonpartisan" PBS hack Judy Woodruff instantly wins HazZzMat's January Glass Navel Award today. This much-coveted award is bestowed monthly, more or less, upon the individual whose head is so far up his or her hindquarters that he/she needs a glass navel to see clearly ahead. (Even then, it generally doesn't help.)

Here's Judy's prizewinning prounouncement, courtesy Politico:
PBS’s Judy Woodruff, quoting someone from the White House, described the situation on ABC’s “This Week” as “a tragedy of Greek proportions if Ted Kennedy's successor is the one, is the one who was responsible for the death of health care.”

Note: "Legal Insurrection" Liveblogging Massachusetts Election

All the news here is breaking too fast for me to follow and comment on. But if you want to stay in touch, here's a site I discovered that's liveblogging the election today up in the Bay State. It's called "Legal Insurrection." That's a pretty good moniker for what seems to be going on. Link here and enjoy.

Brown vs. Coakley 2: Tips for Political Junkies

DC-based Politico is pretty much all politics all the time, generally with a leftward slant but written by reporters who are more familiar with political trench warfare than most. From today's online edition, here's some food for thought:
But as Democrat Martha Coakley and Republican Scott Brown head into the rare mid-January race, just who will show up at the polls remains something of a mystery.
“Conventional wisdom is, the high turnout favors the Democrat. But in a special election, high turnout is volatile because you don’t know who’s showing up,” said Scott Ferson, a Democratic strategist in the state.
Making the vote even tougher to predict: the weather. Tuesday’s forecast calls for a mix of snow and rain, with temperatures in the low 30s.

Massachusetts Vote Count: Fraudsters Waiting in the Wings

As promised in our previous post, here's something to think about even if--and it isn't in the bag--Republican Scott Brown does the impossible and wins the state's "Kennedy seat" in the U.S. Senate. We are informed by an expert that, as in Minnesota, winning the vote count won't quite matter:
"Brown has to beat Coakley by 4.8 percent plus, or he loses outright."
American Digest's Master of 'Massachusettes' Seamus O'Hammer will do your arithmetic for you:
"Herald Today:
Secretary of State William F. Galvin projects between 1.6 million and 2.2 million voters, out of a total of 4 million**, will show up at the polls today despite weather predictions of a mix of rain and snow. More than 105,000 voters have applied for absentee ballots.
"Important information is always in the paper, but you have to mine it, it's not front and center. There's your margin of fraud right there. Not one of those ballots will be cast for Brown, one way or the other. They are comatose people in Nursing Homes, recently dead, you name it. Their names are farmed as sure as any field, all by the Democrats. Ballot boxes will be stuffed in places like Springfield and Lowell, no doubt, but there's a limit to how many people you can count that way. A place that votes 100% Dem is not a target-rich environment for Democrats in a statewide election. The absentee ballots are 4.7 percent of the total. Brown has to beat Coakley by 4.8 percent plus, or he loses outright. And as a practical matter, if it's not quite a bit more than that, he loses in the folderol after.
Read the rest, via American Digest, here.

I'm kind of up about this whole Brown phenomenon, even though he's probably not the kind of Repub you'd get down here in Virginia. Nonetheless, he's pledged to vote against Obamacare, and that's giving him a free pass this inning, particularly among voters in his own state.

Nonetheless, heed the warning above. If anyone would care to fund an outside investigation, I'd take an educated guess that outright machine fraud has been guaranteeing Democrat seats and majorities in a lot of places over the past two decades including Wisconsin, Minnesota, Michigan, Illinois, Ohio, Masachusetts, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, California, Oregon, and New Mexico. If Brown actually wins and then gets sacked by the usual suspects, as happened in Minnesota to Senator Coleman, I'd expect a legal and political donnybrook--the likes of which we've never seen--to follow.

"Tea Parties" have been erupting across the United States since Obamanation took office. Genuine grassroots middle class and working class tax revolts for the most part, they've been rounding dissed or simply ignored by the rapidly declining moonbats in the MSM. But it's just possible that the greatest Tea Party since the original one is now unfolding on the same turf where ordinary working class citizens and tradesmen struck the first blow, over 200 years ago, for what eventually became the United States of America.

How utterly appropriate.

Brown vs. Coakley vs. ACORN et. al.

I haven't had the time to blog much on the astonishing events taking place up in Taxachusetts. But I have to admit I'm flabbergasted. In a state where "Democrat" seems to be encoded in the gene pool, voters are jumping ship in massive numbers to vote for the REPUBLICAN. Who knew? I sure didn't.

And this isn't really partisan, one way or the other. It appears that Massachusetts' working-class and middle-class voters have finally gotten fed up to here with the state's corrupt machine politics. Somewhat surprisingly, they've also grown sick and tired of the quaint notion that the current, technically vacant senate seat Scott Brown and Martha (Marcia?) Coakley are running for is the "Kennedy seat." When the hell did we ever make Senate seats hereditary fiefdoms?

If any state were to buy this hereditary stuff, it would've been Massachusetts. But now, even generationally-inclined Democrats are inclined to hop to the other side of the aisle.

What they're really fed up with is the political elites--many of whom are snotty, privileged graduates of local school Harvard University. They're sick of being looked down upon. This, too, coupled with the nationwide distaste for the current Congressional healthcare debacle has resulted in a massive voter revolt. Polls are putting Brown significantly ahead as voters go to the polls today.

But read our next post. It ain't in the bag until and unless Brown wins massively. The machine backing Coakley, aided and abetted by the professional fraudsters employed by ACORN and the Marxist SEIU leadership are waiting in the wings, highly skilled and ready to "count" the votes. Just like they did in Minnesota, where careful "counting" and "re-counting" resulted in the fraudulent "election" of the despicable Al Franken.

Monday, January 18, 2010

The Forgotten Meaning of Dr. Martin Luther King

Lots going on today on this newest of national holidays. Unfortunately, MLK Day, like most of our other holidays, has been put in service to create yet another 3-day shopping weekend. Meanwhile the nation slowly forgets why this day was set aside as a national holiday in the first place.

Dr. King was gunned down in Memphis, Tennessee in 1968. Had he remained alive after that watershed year, America's racial politics might have taken an entirely different direction.

What Dr. King preached was racial equality. And frankly, at the time his assassination occurred, the majority of Americans--reluctantly or not--were coming around to his point of view. His murder allowed hard left radicals to take over his movement and actually turn it 180 degrees in the opposite direction.  And in so doing, they quickly alienated the many non-blacks that Dr. King had brought, one by one, into the equality fold.

In the name of class struggle, Dr. King's unworthy successors actually succeeded in re-segregating society, creating their own Jim Crowe system of segregation where whites (particularly white men) are irremediably evil while all "persons of color" are therefore good; where blacks are only authentic blacks if they vote only for Democrats and demand annual tithes from anyone who is not "of color;" where every black failure is blamed on white mails and every black success is due to Democrats and not to the power and competence of the black achiever him or herself.

I could go on, but the point is obvious: Dr. King was for racial equality, not re-segregation. He was for equal chances, not stacked decks one way or the other. Ultimately, he favored a color-blind society. Much of America was ready to embrace this in the late 1960s. Most conservatives, myself included, have favored this for decades. But Democrats and leftists of all stripes work actively against it, as successful equality and color-blindness would eliminate a major pillar of the class hatred they need to stay in power. Embracing true equality would rob these hypocrites of the only way they can keep themselves in power today.

This was not Dr. King's dream. Let's use the rest of today to think about this and try to recalibrate before we all take ourselves over the cliff.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Cindy Sheehan vs. Dick Cheney: Back for Another 15 Minutes?

This just in from Fox News online:
LANGLEY, Virginia  —  A group led by anti-war activist Cindy Sheehan has protested near the CIA's headquarters and former Vice President Dick Cheney's home in northern Virginia.
Did I miss something here? Isn't Barack Obama now the POTUS? Isn't Fast-Talkin' Joe Biden now our esteemed Veep?  So why is Mother Sheehan bugging a has-been pol like former Veep, Dick Cheney who left office a year ago? Who's running the war now, Cindy?

Answer: it's not really about the war and it never was. Poor Cindy simply needed another 15 minutes of fame. She knew instinctively that she wouldn't get it by dumping on the Barack and Biden show. The media simply wouldn't cover it. So Cindy went after the usual suspects. And, amazingly, she got the coverage from Fox!

Pathetic. That is so yesterday, Cindy.

But I have to hand it to media whores like Sheehan. They know how to get the lapdog journalists to cover them. All you have to do is round up the usual suspects. It's all Bush's fault anyway.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Business Journalists: They Know Nothing

They know nothing!
   —Jim Cramer

Many stock market fans will recall this line from Jim Cramer's "rant heard round the world" on CNBC-TV in the spring of 2008. He was specifically decrying how the Federal Reserve, and the Federal government for that matter, seemed oblivious to:
  • the blatant manipulation of the market via illegal short-selling strategies of hedge funds and other miscreants; and
  • the need for immediate government intervention in the markets to head off an epic financial crisis
Cramer was way ahead of the curve. If the Feds had acted at that time, they might have forestalled the worst of the current catastrophe.

Today it's today's financial journalists who "know nothing." Aside from deadline-driven bad reporting ("the market was down today because Ben Bernanke forgot to use a comma at a crucial point in his report"), the financial media never connect the dots.

Case in point. On CNBC online this morning, we get a lot of palaver about persistently bad unemployment numbers just out. The uncredited writers' conclusion:
The data, coming in the wake of a report last week showing a surprise drop in non-farm payrolls in December, could add to worries that the economic expansion that started in the third quarter of 2008 could falter once government stimulus ends.
Stubbornly high unemployment remains the weakest link in the recovery from the worst economic downturn since the 1930s.
Case in point. But the piece never connects the dots. Why? Either political ideology or, more likely, just plain ignorance.

"Stubbornly high" unemployment will stay that way as long as the Obama Administration and our current Marxist Congress dither with gigantic, expensive distractions like cap-and-trade, the Great Healthcare Pork Barrel, and punishments (i.e., big taxes) for only recently rescued banks and for their (almost certainly overpaid) high end employees. The problem here is getting people back to work. Aside from the "stimulus bill" (really a big payoff to public employee unions), no attention whatever has been paid to boosting small businesses and getting them back in hiring mode. As long as the financial media fail to put this issue front and center, the crucial unemployment problem will either persist or grow worse.  Unfortunately, "they know nothing."

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

NY Times: Last Copy Editor Out, Please Turn Off the Lights

This from Power Line:
The New York Times--described by a reader earlier today as "the junk-bond issuing, Mexican-controlled New York Times"--continues to decline....from today's paper, an error that every American middle-schooler is taught not to make:
A television review on Friday about "Return to Cranford," on PBS, misidentified, at one point, the period in which the story is set. As the review noted elsewhere, it is set in 1844 -- the mid-19th century, not "the mid-18th century."
Author John Hinderaker concludes:
Does the Times employ editors? Do they really not know these things? The Times is often referred to as an "elite" institution. But the real problem is that the paper is below average.
I can see why John might think this, but there's a more basic, two part answer to his questions. I've experienced this situation myself when having my own articles edited--or not:
  1. Most newspapers have sacked the bulk of their copyeditors and fact-checkers. Same with magazines for that matter. Helps get rid of overhead plus onerous employee benefits packages which will only get worse if the tax-and-spend party stays in power much longer. Problem is, good reporters and reviewers need to dash stuff off as quickly as possible before deadline and rely on the back office staff to catch little goofs they themselves would have caught if they'd had a little more time. With little or no backbench help, errors go uncaught. Except, of course, by alert readers for whom catching such things has always been a most enjoyable sport.
  2. Copyeditors and/or fact checkers who remain--few in number--are young, low-paid English and journalism college grads who've spent more time being propagandized than learning the tricks of the trade like grammar, spelling, and above all, some sense of history. We're now reaping the fruits of this indoctrination. More times than I'd care to cite, ignorant young editors, hired for the lowest possible price, have actually introduced errors into my music reviews, and really stupid ones at that. When this starts happening, a writer starts losing credibility amongst the public, which is really too bad when the errors are not his own.
In point of fact, newspapers and periodicals just don't care about any of this. The bigwigs are trying to save their jobs and rich benefits and to hell with the product. They're just trying to get to retirement age and receive their full, undeserved retirement package which might be in jeopardy if they kept too many worker bees around.

Canada's Politically Incorrect Beaver

HazZzMat's discovered that Canada's second-oldest periodical, "The Beaver"--a history mag founded by the Hudson Bay Company in 1920--has decided to dump its name. Why give up a valuable trademarked and copyrighted title? According to Reuters, it's...
...because its unintended sexual connotation has caused the history journal to become snagged in Internet filters and has turned off potential readers.
In a couple months, it'll evolve into "Canada's History." O tempora, o mores!

When "The Beaver" started publication, the name evoked only Canada's thriving fur industry. Ninety years later, the fur trade has diminished and the magazine's name has become slang for female genitals.
Gee, and I thought it was that sly illusion to an old American sitcom that was bothering them.


We keep telling you here at HazZzMat that language is an issue. Now you know.  

Hat tip to media gossip site Mediabistro for the link.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Salt With Your Foie Gras?

Remember this delicious bit of Politically Correct idiocy back in 2006?
The bird liver delicacy foie gras was banned from restaurants Wednesday in a measure approved by the Chicago City Council after members decided it was inhumane to force-feed the birds.

"Our city is better for taking a stance against the cruelty of foie gras," said Alderman Joe Moore, who sponsored the ordinance.
Mayor Richard Daley opposed the measure.
"We have children getting killed by gang leaders and dope dealers. We have real issues here in this city," said Daley, the Chicago Sun-Times reported on its Web site. "Let's get some priorities."
I'm no particular fan of the Chicago Machine, since and extension of it (aka Obamanation) is now running our country into the ground. But hizzoner was right on both then and now as the Fools on the Hill debate a phony healthcare system that's guaranteed to drive our economy right back into the ground.

Chicago had the good sense to overturn its idiotic foie gras ban in 2008. Meanwhile, however, the PC lunacy persists, this time in New York. In his own attempt to restore the Nanny State to its Prohibition Era glory, Mayor Bloomberg (Idiotarion-NYC) is lashing out against--salt? Apparently, he's concluded that even noxious asbestos fibers don't hold a candle to the dangers of common table salt:
"Salt and asbestos, clearly both are bad for you," Bloomberg continued. "Modern medicine thinks you shouldn't be smoking if you want to live longer. Modern medicine thinks you shouldn't be eating salt, or sodium."

Bloomberg is pushing a plan to cut the amount of salt in packaged and restaurant foods by 25 percent over the next five years. He says the initiative is voluntary.

Voluntary, my tush. What alien dimension does this goofball inhabit?

You can always spot a lefty's first move. Start waging your latest phony moral crusade with something "voluntary." Then gradually make it mandatory by piling on fines, penalties, and jail terms.

It's taken less than a year for the nation to bitterly regret the horrendous mistake it made by listening to the media propagandists uncritically and giving a cadre of condescending nannies, elitists, and intellectualoids (i.e., the Democrats) full control over the Federal government. Having seized this authority, they're now moving as quickly as possible to exert as much control as they can over every aspect of our lives, apparently convinced we're all too stupid to take care of ourselves. Their methods: ban, tax, and punish. The hell with the still faltering economy.

2010, in case you forgot, is an election year. It's time to get to work and throw these arrogant bums out before  China and Russia start looking like beacons of democracy to a fast-decaying and economically destitute US of A.

Saturday, January 09, 2010

An Icy Take on the Goracle

I'm sitting here this afternoon typing this brief entry as my all-new Energy Star-compliant heat pump cranks away endlessly. GEEZ, it's cold here in the DC Metro area. Meanwhile, oranges are in danger of freezing, sea turtles and iguanas are cold-shocked, and manatees are gathering around evil, polluting power plants attempting to stay warm in Florida. Meanwhile, no one seems to have heard a peep from North Dakota in awhile.

So to lighten things up a bit as we enter a new Ice Age, I though it fitting to offer you a photo of a unique Al Gore effigy crafted by some witty folks up in Fairbanks, Alaska, which knows from cold as they'd say in New Yawk. The bumbling, mendacious ex-Veep has apparently become something of a running gag up there, according to the Fairbanks Daily News-Miner:
In what might become an annual tradition, an ice sculpture of former Vice President Al Gore has taken its place in front of Thrifty Liquor along Airport Way.
Lest you think that this, er, temporary exhibition is meant to honor the Goracle:
The two-ton “Frozen Gore” sculpture isn’t exactly a tribute. It’s a tongue-in-cheek critique of Gore’s vocal belief in man-made climate change, complete with hot air pouring out of his mouth.
This year’s version includes special effects, thanks to a system that pipes the exhaust from a Ford F-350 out of Gore’s open mouth. Compeau will fire up the truck periodically this winter to create the “hot air” effect.


Gotta love it. So much for cutting down on noxious effluents.

Flyover country is getting fed up to here with pompous, condescending lefties like the Goracle who live the high life while extracting money from our wallets and telling us to cut back on everything to "save the planet." Hope the voters still feel this way during the November elections.

Meanwhile, it's nice to have a chuckle for a change before we head into the final rounds of the Obama/Reid/Pelosi healthcare debacle next week.

Tuesday, January 05, 2010

Homeland Security Official Exposed as Clown



Consider the following passage from a Fox News story. It begins with an observable, verifiable fact and concludes with an utterly moronic observation via a typically dense Obama administration idiotarian:
More than a dozen detainees transferred to Yemen reportedly have returned to fight with Al Qaeda. But on Sunday Deputy National Security Adviser for Counterterrorism and Homeland Security John Brennan did not rule out sending Yemeni detainees back to that country.
Minister of Propagand Press Secretary Gibbs tries first to defuse the issue ex post facto:
The U.S. will not transfer any detainees from Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, to Yemen right now, White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs said Tuesday.
But, after carefully slipping in that "right now," he proceeds to step in the doo-doo, too:
Ninety detainees in Gitmo are from Yemen, which is combating a resurgent Al Qaeda. A delayed return could mean they will end up in a federal prison in Thomson, Illinois, Gibbs said.
Is that a threat, dude? In your boss' home state, no less?? Illinoisians must indeed be pleased to have their guy in the White House.

I am beginning to think that the Obama campaign must have borrowed Steve Jobs' famous reality distortion field to conceal their true nature and thus ensure winning the 2008 election. It's the only possible explanation I can come up with. The American people are simply too intelligent to have consciously elected these politically tone-deaf Bozos.




Nostalgic for "Global Warming"?

For upwards of 3 weeks now, life in the physical universe, at least for this writer, has been a serious drag.

First, the DC area (where we reside) gets whacked with by far the biggest and coldest snowstorm we've seen in quite awhile. Since we don't generally need snowblowers here, I spent the better part of the next 3 days digging out our two cars with a good old fashioned snow shovel. So industriously did I hurl snow onto the growing Matterhorn of our front yard that I appear to have strained an elbow ligament and have been in some pain ever since.

Then we traveled to Toledo (home of the Mud Hens) and Cleveland (home of the Tribe), Ohio for the holidays. The snow was less onerous, surprisingly, but the howling winds off Lake Erie made us realize we'd moved away from there many years ago, leaving family and friends behind.

Now we're back in DC and it's cold, cold, cold, and there's more snow coming. And actually, looking at the weather maps, our friends from northwest Canada seem intent on sending down as much frigid cold as possible over at least another week.

One longs at such times for just a small respite, a bit of warmth, hope for the future. And so it was with a couple of commentators over at Breitbart's "Big Government" site. Responding to a piece on a Chinese offer to make money off us as we pursue "global warming" solutions, "meidz" opines:
I've been eagery awaiting the return of global warming for the last four days, so we could get back above the freezing point. Or just think, if these are the temperatures with global warming, think how cold we would be without it?
Hey, I can relate to that feeling. "Cowboy Logic" has another take:
This Global Warming thingey is sure something. I'm freezing my ass of at 20 below zero with three feet of snow. 
Crude but effective, dude. "Right Wing Stuff" picks up one of our topics, namely the terminology switch by the climate nuts, still desperate to remain relevant by employing a tautology:
Get wit da program y'all. Global Warming is now Climate Change - they have to keep the farce alive somehow. So every time it's not 69 degrees somewhere it's an aberration caused by man. 
"KCBoomer" elucidates further:
Has anyone else noticed that the environmental con-artists have changed their slogan from Global Warming to Climate Change. This way when their warming "science" is debunked and the environment actually cools, they can say that it's the cooling that is now mans fault. It doesn't matter if the temps go up or down, they will find ways to take tax dollars and "study" mans involvement in global environmental changes. What they don't seem to realize is that this big world we live on has done it's own thing, environmentally, longer than man has been around. It will continue to warm and cool despite anything we do or "study". It's all a big con game!
An uncommonly enjoyable batch of comment samples, eh? Let's wrap this up with a grand (if slightly colorful) finale from "Gen N Greene":
When Al Gore is heating his mud hut by lighting his own methane expulsions, we'll talk..........until then, to Hades with all the Marxist greenies and their imbecile dupes.

Global Cooling?


Nearly the entire eastern half of the United States is enduring bitterly cold temperatures not experienced since 1985. Even Florida, which has been hovering around freezing levels overnight recently, is also feeling the almost-nationwide chill. 
"It'll be like the great winters of the '60s and '70s," said AccuWeather.com Chief Meteorologist and Expert Long Range Forecaster Joe Bastardi. 

This AccuWeather report simply adds to the steady drumbeat of empirical evidence that "global warming" is a hoax. Right, one year does not a trend make. But with the "global warming" trend exposed as a fraud, maybe this winter will cause people to think twice before they believe in trends that are preached like the Gospel rather than those revealed by means of hidden data, tenured-in professors responsible to no one, and an idiotic media that will bleat anything just as long as it might hasten the decline of the US. Hopefully, 2010 will be the year we forget about "global warming" nonsense and pay more attention to our still ailing economy.