Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Guns and Butter, Betty's latest chapter and more

Several things. First, a number of e-mails asked about posts? We just had a primary yesterday. (And a very low turnout.) I was trying to get the word out on the propositions so that even people who didn't give a damn about the candidates and, sorry, American Democrats, but most of us didn't give a damn about the Democratic nominee for governor. They weren't that different and no one felt like voting was going to make that big of difference.

Since that was top of the ticket, that might have depressed turnout.

I can't believe that we've got another boring candidate. We had it with Bustamante as well. But the national media wanted to act like there was really a race there between him and Ahnuld. There wasn't.

Ahnuld looks far less than 'good guy' that some uninformed voters thought he was last time; however, I'm not looking forward to the general election with any expectations.

There may be a lesson here. The lesson everyone's pushing is that because Marcy Winograd lost to Jane Harmon, the stay silent on the war and everything else is a good solution. The truth that the national media seems unaware of is that Harmon put out a last minute commercial talking about the need to hold people accountable. A friend saw it and called me excitedly, "She will go for impeachment!" She won't. But there was no talking my friend out of the mistaken belief.

Here's what I see. Take for what you think it's worth.

The lesson from Marcy is that she got basically a third of the vote, running against a powerful incumbent. If Marcy had more time, she probably could have gotten even more. So the lesson here is that Dems shouldn't be so damn complacent.

I think that carries to the top of the ticket this race. We saw two boring candidates vie for the Dem nomination for governor and our reaction was not just too yawn, it was too stay home.
That's a lesson Dems might want to consider nationally.

Ahnuld's unpopular. So is the Bully Boy. But if you don't run campaigns that speak to people, people may not show up. So we could very easily be spending December thinking, "What happened? The Democrats seemed to have a lock on it."

I also, dropping back to lack of posts, had my nieces visiting last week.

I almost didn't finish the album review. C.I. said not to worry about but I said I'd have it done on Saturday and I made it just barely. ("Kat's Korner: Janis Ian blows in on a gentle breeze")

This week? Now that the election's over, I'm moving a little slower. I did make Trina's latest
"Potatoes Anna in the Kitchen" and they turned out pretty well.

By the way three members are bothered that in Mike's "My interview with Kat" I came out in favor of dropping highlights to keep the "Iraq snapshot" at The Common Ills. That interview was done on Wednesday ("while voting was still going on!" wrote one) but I already knew it wouldn't post until Thursday evening. Voting ended Thursday at noon (EST) on that issue. By the time my remarks went up, the voting was over. So the "influencing" I was accused of attempting really only means influencing Mike and I'll go ahead and break it to the three, everyone doing a site had already discussed this and all felt that the "Iraq snapshot" was more important than highlights.

Rebecca, in "todd chretien, music and wmd," voiced her opinion while the vote was going on. We agreed but even if we hadn't, she can voice her opinion anytime she wants. That's her right.

What I did feel bad about was talking about Isaiah's illustrations. I meant what I said but I know it makes him nervous when he feels there are expectations to be met. I did wonder, "Was there really a wedding he had to attend or was that an excuse because I'd made him nervous with all my praise?" (There was no comic Sunday.)

Other than that, I don't regret anything in the interview.

KPFA broadcasts Guns and Butter and it aired it's latest today. I hope you were listening. William Pepper's speech was this week's show. William Pepper. Say it with me, "William Pepper." Why? The New York Times wrote another one of their silly pieces (this one on the 9/11 truth movement convention) and worked real hard to avoid mentioning him by name. It was a very curious article. The New York Times was mentioned by Pepper on today's show. He talked about how James Earl Ray was supposedly a part of a bank robbery -- that's where he supposedly got his money. The Times broke that story on their front page.

But Pepper spoke to the police, he spoke to the bank president. Ray wasn't involved and they hadn't talked to the paper. It was just disinformation. He talked about how, in the fifties, twelve (I believe it was twelve) positions were created at the paper for the CIA and that those slots continue to this day.

Is that why the paper avoided mentioning him by name this week? Who knows?

(To give credit where it's due, he noted that Carl Bernstein had broken that story in the seventies.)

KPFA's Guns and Butter airs every Wednesday and if you missed it or if you didn't know about it and are thinking, "I'm curious" -- you can use either link to access an archived broadcast which you can listen to at no charge.

Now a correction to something at The Common Ills today. I did help Betty today. I called her at work this morning to say, "You're 'husband' is on TV!" Amy Goodman interviewed him (Thomas Friedman on "Petropolitics", Iraq, Israel-Palestine and the "Excuse Makers"). But someone else helped as well. What I did was type up some things she dictated. Betty sends drafts to C.I. in e-mails. C.I.'s the one who went through the three "scraps" (Betty's word) looking for useable pieces. C.I. assembled them, e-mailed them to me and I read them to Betty who made changes in her original versions and created the new section about the interview. That's just how C.I. is, always the first to give credit and always the last to accept any.

But Betty saw that and asked me if I could note here that there was another helper.

I wasn't trying to urge her to write, by the way. I know she's busy. But it blew me away that Thomas Friedman was a guest and Betty listens in the evening, driving to the daycare after work, then driving home with kids. I could just picture her going off the road without a heads up to who was on. When she found out, she said, "I have to write something today."

But it's a church night for her. So there's really no time. When we got off the phone, she was going to try to think of something. Then I called C.I. and suggested if it was mentioned, the interview, with a few comments, at The Common Ills then Betty might not feel so much pressure to try to make time to write. C.I. said, she had three pieces already that she was working on and maybe something could be pulled from each?

Then a few minutes later (I think 15) C.I. called me and asked if I was calling her. I'd planned to because she's got a promotion a work and those can be stressful. So I generally do call at least once a day right now just to give her a pep talk. So it was no problem to call again (maybe it was a problem for her -- to get another call for me!) C.I. told me about the "montage." So I called
Betty and read it to her. She made a few changes (it was a montage of three pieces she was working on, to be clear, all writing was Betty's) and I posted it for her.

Don't expect that happen to again. (Not my helping her but morning posts from her.) But this was a rare thing. She covers Thomas Friedman and he was on the community's favorite program. So she felt she had to write something about it. So she did. And just before noon (EST) you had "Thomas Friedman, the Jayne Mansfield of the New York Times." Be sure to check it out.