Sunday, March 26, 2006

Gone fishin'
As the old saying goes ... Politizine will be on hiatus for a couple of weeks. Talk amongst yourselves.

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Noise Top 30 Chart - April
Reporting stations: WAAF, WBCN, WFNX, WMBR, WMFO, WTCC

1. Damone – Out Here All Night EP
2. Chop Chop – Chop Chop
3. Volcano! – Beautiful Seizure
4. Freezepop – “Outerspace”
5. The Hidden – Smash to Ashes
6. Muck & The Mires – 1-2-3-4
7. The Curtain Society – Every Corner of the Room
8. Campaign for Real Time – Yes … I Mean No
9. Das Happening – Das Happening EP
10. Dresden Dolls – Yes, Virginia
11. The Irreverends – The Irreverends
12. Rockets Burst from the Street Lamps – Departed
13. AM Stereo – Can’t
14. Karacter – New Old Stock
15. Miskatonic – Miskatonic
16. Protokoll – EP
17. Compass – Munchy the Bear
18. Ramona Silver – Intermission
19. Rooftop Suicide Club – Always Like This
20. Super-Cannes – Burn
21. The Bags – Night of the Corn People [reissue]
22. The Beatings – Holding on to Hand Grenades
23. Ho-Ag – Pray for Worms
24. Rick Berlin – Me and Van Gogh
25. Ray Mason – old school
26. The Life Partners – “Don’t Stop Believing”
27. Mongrel – Mongrel EP
28. Dear Leader – “Radar”
29. The Cautions – Proceed with … The Cautions
30. Digney Fignus – Trouble on the Levee

Sunday, March 19, 2006

Who reads Politizine?
An interesting thing happened this week. I got an email from SiteMeter, one of the companies I have counting the number of hits I get on this site. I don't recall when I signed up for SiteMeter. It was a while ago; maybe a year. One of the interesting things about the company, unlike other site counting companies, is that SiteMeter measures doesn't multiple count IP addresses, therefore it gets the most accurate count of people visiting the site.
In the early days of blogs and Web sites, people were hired to sit and visit the site all day, clicking away, in order to boost the numbers of people visiting the site. A company could then say, we have 1 million readers per day ... when in actuality, they had 10 folks working 8 hours per day clicking away in the back room of an office somewhere. Companies and geeks can't do that anymore; technology has advanced to the point of being able to track all kinds of information on the Web.
Anyhow, they sent me a site summary of visits, page views, days of the week, and time of the day for me to look at. This was the first time I have received this data from them and it is pretty cool. Being a numbers person, I found it all quite fascinating.
For example, in the last year, Politizine has had 8,722 hits and 11,739 page views for an average of 24 hits per day and 35 page views per day. This means that there is an average of about 24 random or regular readers to this site on any given day. Since the numbers fluctuate, from a high of about 55 to a low of about 18, it can vary, depending on what I have posted or when people are looking for new posts. On average, each reader accesses 1.4 pages of this blog. Meaning, readers probably only look at the front page. Here is what is even more interesting - or kinda pathetic, in some ways: The average reader spends a little over 2 minutes on the page. This means most folks aren't really reading too deeply into the page [or it is a safe assumption that people aren't]. Or, what could be happening is that some folks come to the site for a few seconds and leave, while other folks spend four or five minutes on the site.
Some other interesting data: During the week of numbers which were sent to me recently, most readers visited the site on Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays; numbers drop over the weekend; most readers visit the site at 5 p.m., between 9 and 11 p.m., and even around 1 a.m., meaning they must be casual readers and not reading it on their work hours.
On Monday, March 13, however, three viewers in the 8 a.m. hour accessed 10 pages of the site. Again at 11 p.m. that day, five viewers accessed 11 pages. On Tuesday, March 14, six viewers accessed 11 pages. On Thursday, March 9, four different people viewed the site at 1 a.m. and four different people again at 9 a.m. Pretty interesting, eh?
It is all anonymous; so don't think SiteMeter is the PATRIOT Act for blogs. They don't send me IP addresses or anything like that, just the random visit numbers.
However, to all the readers of Politizine, thanks for checking us out and I hope you enjoy the content. Please feel free to interact at any time. :-)

Back to business: Isn't it intriguing that newspaper editors always seem to save their best for the Sundays [or Saturday night, however you think about it]?
Here is the latest on the Dems attempting to co-opt the Republicans on security: ["Political offensive targets Bush"]. I certainly hope this doesn't mean that they will be riding around in tanks, looking all tough and silly.
Can I wonder out loud if this is the best strategy? What about the budget going crazy? All the "economic indicators" say things are great but we all know they aren't. Ask anyone who works at Dunkin' Donuts or Wal-Mart how things are. There has to be a better message than "We're better for Vets." Although, let's see the Republicans go after budget-busting with cuts in the VA system like they tried to do a couple of years ago. Yikes. Not a smart move.

Novak: ["Gore vs. Hilary"]. Ugh. Please, say it isn't so. Please, please, please. I fear that the insiders, in trying to put in some early caucuses between Iowa and New Hampshire, are essentially trying to set it up for an early win once again. One or two of these folks will be in the lead and the rest will fall under the bus, all under the guise of being "diverse" when in actuality, there will be no diversity at all. How is a Gore or a Clinton diverse?
It is clear that Sen. Carl Levin, D-Michigan, and anti-NH primary motivator, has been doing a good job of organizing folks. And, may I speculate, that our folks here in New Hampshire may not be doing such a good job. I'm not on the inside; I don't know. I'm just speculating. And sure, the state party is working on 2006 stuff. But before you know it ...
However, candidates are coming here; which is cool, especially from a news perspective. A few quick caucus states thrown in might not hurt our process; but then again, it might be harmful and not the best solution to the process problem. Instant front-runner, instant nominee, which is exactly what both major parties don't need in 2008.
Does anyone recall how boring the Gore vs. Bradley race was in 2000? The only interesting thing about it was Bradley actually talking about how bad race relations are in this country. Unfortunately, he allowed himself to be badly handled, strategy-wise. So boring was that primary that supposedly independent-minded liberal voters were flocking to vote for Sen. John McCain! How sad and hypocritical is that?! Those voters essentially crushed Bradley's campaign.
Insert mocking liberal voice here: "Oh, John McCain is a straight-talker. I don't care if he is pro-life or a member of the Keating Five, I'm going to vote for him anyway because he talks straight ..." They can vote for a conservative Republican in McCain because he supposedly talks straight, but they can't vote for conservative Republican Pat Buchanan who actually tried to save American jobs and preserve our country's standard of living? That makes no sense at all.
Insert mocking liberal voice here: "Globalism is great. All the peons from third world nations will do the dirty work and we can sit in life-long-learning libraries and never really do a hard day's work ... I think I will go think about something ..." Oh boy.
Now don't get me wrong, the mocking free trade slave businessman's voice will say the same thing ... without the thinking in the library bit.
Globalism, as a theory, is wrong. It doesn't work. We can't build a stable world of nations by enslaving them economically, the same way we can't build stable neighborhoods in our cities without home ownership. All you build is despots and dictators and people who need to be kept "under control" with weapons. It isn't working.
But back to the primaries. It's Sunday. I feel like a manifesto or how about a traveling road show concept?
Let's have a free-for-all. Let's have a totally bloody mess of a primary in 2008. Let's have eight to 10 candidates from each party beat the daylights out of each other ... or even having civil conversations with each other ... for their perspective nominations.
Let's set a time limit on it, say, January 1, 2007, as the starting gate. All candidates interested should make up their minds at that point and declare.
Then, the traveling road show would kick in. It could be like Howard Dean campaign's venture into the red states early in 2003 only instead of one candidate, it will be all the candidates, with each party organizing the events to coincide with each other over a specific period of time.
Let's make them all go out to the other states and talk to folks at supper halls, downtowns, and college auditoriums all across the nation. The would have the morning to walk around, with afternoon lectures and nightly debates in the evening at some auditorium.
Pretend it was a Battle of the Bands on tour for say six months, visiting each city over 100,000 people, traveling from one state to the next to the next. C-Span will tape it all; the mainstream press would help pay to finance it and then get the tapes as they go along.
The American people could actually meet these folks and the rest of us speculate about it from our couches. Voters and supporters can donate online when they have time to the candidates they like best.
The traveling road show can be scheduled between Thursday and Sunday. Monday through Wednesday, would be at the candidate's discretion to do what they want, like spend time with family or revisit other states.
Let's not have a return to the past, again, and again, and again, which delivers nothing but the worst of the worst, with the usage of shallow, sound bit snippets of nothing but gobbly-gook, all dictated and controlled by large campaign contributors and stuck-up cocktail party crowd blatherings.
Let's try something different. Let's try something informative and fun.
Let's also get the national media to agree not to cover horse race issues like money raised or polling data and instead, invest all the time, money, and energy spent on polling and data to really investigate the issues of the day. They can create long-form news content, on par with a "60 Minutes" segment, addressing these issues and candidates over a period of time, using footage from C-Span and material gathered on their own. Let's also get the national media to agree not to call the elections before every vote has been counted in either a primary or national election. If it takes days, it takes days. This is the presidency, after all.
After all this is done, everyone will have been given a taste of the candidates and the last person standing will have the best shot based on ideas and ideals - and not money, looks, and plastic.
Then, the voters of Iowa, then New Hampshire, and then one or two western and/or southern states with primaries or caucuses, get a chance to really eye-ball these folks even deeper - after everyone else has had the six month roadshow. This process would have brought the Iowa and New Hampshire experience to other states - and not stolen our experience from us.
Then, after the primaries are over, we do the process all over again.
Let's get the national media to agree to give equal coverage to the so-called "fringe" candidates of the two major parties and independent parties. Let's also get them to agree not to call Naderites, Libertarians, and Reformers, "spoilers" of any kind, except of a spoiled rotten and corrupt political system. Again, all candidates who are on the ballot in enough states which total a winning electoral college outcome will be put on a traveling roadshow on Thursday through Sunday to tour all the cities and states of America again, and debate and discuss the issues with the people of America.
Let us, as voters, writers, and speculators, demand a better process from the voting system, the media, and the public at large.
And then, the best person to run the nation will have won. And, while we won't all be happy, we will know everything and anything about the person who needs to lead the nation. It will have been a great experiment in civic responsibility and a good time by all.
Peace demonstrations: There are peace demonstrations all over the place for the third anniversary of the Iraq invansion. But the media coverage hasn't been as good as it has in the past. Oh well; what can you do?

Recent surge in violence: Boy, check out this: ["Deranged, Disconnected, and Dangerous "]. If this doesn't say it all, I don't know what does. Three years worth of the same catch phrase? That sounds like a problem to me.

Saturday, March 18, 2006

Uh-oh: The Howie Edition
Channel 5's David Boeri of all people has a blistering critique of Howie Carr's new book in the Phoenix this week: ["Howie Carr blows up"]. This is huge, despite the soaring sales of the book, because it goes through the thing point by point. What is also interesting here is that Boeri is basically confirming what we've all kinda known about Howie for a long time: He's been phoning it in for years; obsessed with trying to become the next Howard Stern. And when that didn't work, the next Rush Limbaugh. And then the next whatever, instead of being as great as he could be at who he is: Howie Carr. With newspaper sales sagging and his show limited to New England syndication, he really needed to come out with a really good book which wasn't just an overview - especially in the wake of the amazing "Black Mass." To be fair and balanced, Howie has always called the Phoenix, "a one-hand rag ..." But this didn't come from one of the great front section writers of the Phoenix - but a colleague in TV who has been covering the same story.

Wicked Local: Now, this is cool: ["Wicked Local Plymouth"]. Mark Jurkowitz posted this over at Media Log yesterday. A localized Web version - almost an expanded news blog - which is subsidized by a newspaper. The only problem I see here is the financial model. How do you pay to keep it up when there doesn't seem to be any advertising revenue around the model?
There isn't much about this and I can't seem for find any other information about how many towns this will be covering or anything else. But I did find this when I Googled "Wicked Local," from a conference by Suburban Newspapers of America scheduled for May 2006:

10:15 AM – 11:15 AM: – A Case Study in the Boston Suburbs, Presented by Bob Kempf, Vice President of Interactive Media, Enterprise NewsMedia, LLC. Locally based web-only companies are showing-up in markets across North America. What do you know about this new competitor…who are they and how do they operate?
One such approach was recently launched by Enterprise NewsMedia in Quincy, MA. Traditionally a print newspaper company, Enterprise NewsMedia identified this new threat early and decided that a strong offense was their best defense. Bob Kempf and his internet development team have just launched what is now known as ‘WickedLocal’. More than simply a separate brand, Wicked Local breaks new ground with a network of hyper-local websites that will draw news content from affiliate newspapers, offer a robust platform for citizen journalism and provide a comprehensive local search resource.
In this session we’ll hear how this new group of local, community based websites coexists with their traditional print products and what they mean to the communities they serve.

Thursday, March 16, 2006

Well, maybe not so ...
Thanks to Adam Reilly over at the Phoenix for posting this: ["Romney backers paid the expenses of some to attend Tenn. poll"]. Since I rarely read the Globe anymore, I totally missed this. But, it makes the Romney second place poll finish look a bit, well, planned.

Democrats "cowering": That is how Feingold put it yesterday: ["Feingold Accuses Democrats of 'Cowering'"]. It seems pretty accurate. All talk; no action. Pathetic. Here is what the great William Greider thinks: ["A Peculiar Politician"]. The closing quote is a killer:
"For the moment, however, let us celebrate the man. The club will try to shove him in a closet and forget his little unpleasantness ever happened. I hope they fail and other Dems are properly embarrassed. Amid scandals in high places, Senator Feingold is fresh air. The country should rise up and sing."

Updated political site: I've been meaning to post that, a junkie's dream site, has recently gone through a revamp. You can see for yourself by clicking here: [""]. James does a pretty good job covering all things 2008 as well as local New Hampshire political news. The upgrade is impressive.

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

The State of the News Media 2006
Here is a really interesting and thorough study on the state of the media in America, posted on Media Log yesterday: ["The State of the News Media 2006"]. I have only gone through the radio portion of it and wow, it pretty much shows a clear picture of how bad things are. I will look at the other portions of the studio at a late date but wow, what a study.

Sunday, March 12, 2006

Bush censure?

Russ sticks his neck out: ["Feingold Calls for Bush's Censure"]. We'll see how this attempt goes. I recall a supposed move by Sen. John Kerry to call for the impeachment of President Bush but that never materialized. In addition, if President Clinton can be impeached for what he did - essentially being a sexual predator - surely Bush can be censured for acting like a borderline war criminal.

Mitt in stunning second place finish: When there is a hometown boy in the race, the talk is never about first place. And in the case of yesterday's Southern Republican Leadership Conference, second was everything: ["Frist Leads Informal GOP Poll for '08"]. I picked Romney to place sixth: ["Guess Romney's straw poll finish, win a DVD!"]. So, I won't be winning the DVD ... and so much for what I know about southern folks, eh? Or maybe not: ["Faith Hill, Tim McGraw Blast 'Humiliating' Katrina Cleanup"].
"When you have people dying because they're poor and black or poor and white, or because of whatever they are — if that's a number on a political scale — then that is the most wrong thing. That erases everything that's great about our country."
Respect for the dead: Do these people have no shame?: ["Hecklers harass families of US soldiers killed in Iraq"]. What happened to unconditional love? I know it is hard. But you are supposed to at least try. These people need to stop judging people and start looking at their own behavior.

I missed posting these earlier in the week: ["Ranking of World's Billionaires by Forbes"]. 2006 - Rudderless Dems: ["Democrats Struggle To Seize Opportunity"]. Dant dah dah dant, dant dant dah: ["The A-Team Reunite For TV Special"]. V is for: ["The Mad Man In The Mask"].

Some quick stuff from Massachusetts' politics
First, this: ["UMass pollster worked on the side"]. While this isn't too surprising - it happens a lot - I've always wondered about DiNatale. I've seen him say some things over the years that revealed him to either be completely clueless - or totally in the tank to some interest. Well ...

Second, polls. First, this one: ["Reilly leads, Patrick gains in new poll"]. UNH Survey Center does a pretty good job of polling, so I don't think the Globe fixed this. But, it is interesting to see these numbers - with both Dems winning; Miho potentially affecting Healey's campaign; and a whole slew of undecideds.

And that Globe poll is completely different than the one posted by SurveyUSA/WBZ just last week: ["New Poll Shows Tight Race For Governor"]. Of course, this poll asked 200 more voters than the Globe poll. But the Globe poll was a week later. A lot can happen in a week. Although, nothing in this campaign has happened to see numbers move around like that. The electorate in Massachusetts is fickle right now.

The WBZ poll also allows the reader to go into the numbers a bit. Here are some interesting things inside the poll that I noticed:
* Mihos is surprisingly more popular with women than men. This is the same guy who helped to run Jane Swift - working mom, governor - out of town on a rail. Reilly is even stronger with women - if he ends up being the nominee.
* Healey is more popular with men than women. This isn't that unusual since every woman I know thinks Healey is a dingbat and men tend to swing conservative anyway.
* Healey wins over young people [18-34] and Boomers [50-64], while Patrick gets the X-ers [35-49]. But Reilly wins most age groups if he is the nominee, with Healey taking the 65-plus. It is interesting to see young people flip so easily between one candidate and the other. This shows that there is no real party loyalty there in the 18-34 bracket.
* Healey gets 43 percent of the Hispanic vote with Patrick in the race ... wow, so much for the "logic" that the minority candidate would automatically get the minority vote. But if Reilly is the nominee, he sweeps all races. Very interesting.
* Mihos earns more Democrat votes than Republicans [16 to 14] with Patrick as the Dem nominee. With Reilly in, 4 percent more swing to Mihos ... but Healey also loses 7 percent of the Dems. This shows that Reilly turns off some indie-minded Dems who would support Patrick with other Dems going to Reilly over Healey. It also shows that those Dems would prefer Healey over Patrick. Very interesting.
* And if Healey wins, the Democratic nominee - in this case, Patrick - can blame the 19 percent of Dems and 21 percent of voters who described themselves as "liberals" who voted for her.
Is race a factor with these so-called enlightened Democrats and liberals? It seems to be in the last two categories here.

Monday, March 6, 2006

Halo 2
I had a great time last weekend playing Halo 2 with my buds. We set up two TVs put two games through a router and networked the games. Seven hours later ...
It is interesting. Gone are the days of Pong. Damn. Gone are the days of Defender. Now, as a grown man, I can still play with the best of them. Hah.

Thursday, March 2, 2006

R.I.P.: Harry Browne
Two-time Libertarian presidential candidate Harry Browne died today: ["Harry Browne, Libertarian candidate, dies"]. I got a chance to interview Browne in 1996 and he gave me the whole hour for an interview even though my show was on a 125 watt non-profit FM station. He was gracious and seemed to have a real concern for the American people. While I didn't agree with all his ideas, Browne truly cared about the country.

Mihos roundup: Even though I no longer live in Massachusetts, I'm still watching the gubernatorial campaign there with interest. It has made for good reading and will be all the more interesting to watch as Christy Mihos jumps in as an indie. Here is Mihos' official Web site: ["Christy Mihos for Governor"] and the latest roundup of stories:
["Mihos workers abandon ship in rough seas"] This is not a surprise: Ron Vining has been involved in Republican campaigns for a long time. I doubt he would work for an indie.
["Mihos Campaign Faces Challenges"]
["Independents need to step up in political arena"] Here is a letter from an aquaintance of mine, John Valianti, who was involved in the fight to Save Fenway Park.

Wednesday, March 1, 2006

Why Kerry Murphy Healy will never be governor of Massachusetts
Four words: Christy Mihos, independent candidate: ["Mihos to run as independent"].
Mihos, whose family founded the Christy's Markets store chain, is one of the reasons Jane Swift isn't governor today, after he fought off being fired by Swift during the Big Dig/Turnpike scandals. He is also one of the reasons that Mitt "Guy Smiley" Romney is governor today, encouraging the Mittster to break his promise that he wouldn't challenge a sitting Republican for gubernatorial seat but bumped-off Swift anyway. Despite what people said, Swift wasn't a bad governor in the scheme of things. She was a moderate Republican who cared about the right things. But the good ole' boys didn't like that should could breed and govern at the same time.
Then, 9-11 hit on her watch, with the hijacked jets flying out of Logan and Guy Smiley was later featured with fireworks and flags at the Olympics in Utah. Presto, instant governor.
Adam Reilly has one of Mihos' big - albeit probably unrealistic - ideas: ["Mihos's Big Idea"]. Reilly also has a piece on AG Tom Reilly's collapsing campaign: ["Ship without a rudder"].
More on the logistics of a potential Mihos indie run after he officially announces.

In the Better Late Than Never category, place this: ["Is 'Made in U.S.A.' back in vogue?"].
"'U.S. retailers are finally looking at lost sales as lost revenue,' said Cohen. 'They know that in order to capture maximum sales they need to turn their inventory much quicker.' The disadvantage of importing from China, he said, is that it requires a longer lead time of between three to six month from the time an order is placed to when the inventory is stocked in stores."
Eh, is it this or the fact that stuff in China is junk? But no matter what the reason, this is good news for the nation, long-term.
News round up:
Here are some things going on you may have missed. I probably would have missed them - had I not been looking - because I've been pretty busy these days.

Just as our own Senator John Sununu is getting some faint praise for working out a deal on the PATRIOT Act, another senator comes to his senses: ["Byrd Says He Regrets Voting For Patriot Act"]. FoxNews had this first - probably because they are on the Byrd death watch [they also caught the "white n*gg#r" comment on tape, which Byrd made a couple of years back. Byrd was a former Klansman]. This, of course, is the key point to everything involving this act and other things the government has been doing over the past 10 years, paraphrasing Ben Franklin:
"Ben Franklin, that wise man among the Constitution's framers, perhaps said it most simply," Byrd says now. "'Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.'"
Of course, Byrd has seen better days - and recently incurred the wrath of some Dems for voting to appoint Alito to the Supreme Court. But, it is pretty good having him there because he realizes the big picture.

The Brothers Bulger
Howie Carr has finally released his book about the Bulger crime family, most specifically Whitey, the notorious Southie mobster, and his political thug brother and former Senate President, Billy. Three excerpts were published last week in the Boston Herald, in order to generate some sales interest. Howie has been making the rounds on all of the cable talk shows too. Here are the links:

["Blood Brothers: How Whitey made good his escape"]
["How the state cops let Whitey slip through their hands"]
["Hoodlum wannabe Whitey was Hub hustler"]

I waited to buy "Black Mass" in paperback so I might have to wait for this to come out in paperback too.

Sex Pistols won't play!
For years, I have been bitching about the Sex Pistols not being inducted into the Rock 'n Roll Hall of Fame even though the band kept saying they wouldn't accept the honor. Well, they were named this year ... and they aren't showing up:
["Sex Pistols spit on Hall of Fame honor"].
The text was posted on "The Filth and the Fury" Web site, the site of a great documentary film on the band and the time period in England ["The Filth and the Fury"].
Thinking about it now, this is probably the correct decision for them, although I wonder. They are making a bold statement about the pomposity of the music business. It is an industry - always has been - even if it didn't start out to be that way. It is always best to at least attempt to stick to your laurels [Plus, who knew it was $25k for a damn table! Warners has made a fortune from them. Pony up already].
And what would the jam session be like? Steve Jones mocks a pretty good Chuck Berry but can you hear Johnny Rotten trying to sing Blondie's "Call Me" or Skynyrd's "Free Bird"? Ugh. Imagine the ever obnoxious Eric Clapton or some other wank-off trying to follow along to the Pistols' anti-abortion opus "Bodies" or "God Save the Queen" [Clapton could pull of the solo in "GSTQ" but it kinda wouldn't be the same now would it?]. Although, they might be able to pull off Iggy's "No Fun" or The Who's brilliant "Substitute" together. Will Mike Love show up drunk and call Paul Cook onto the stage to jam and have Cook kick over the rack bopping the TM specialist on the head with a cymbal? Love might sue! Sid Vicious could come back from the dead as a ghost pissing in the champagne and shooting bullets from his revolver at everyone to the glorious musical back drop of "My Way." Oh, the horrors ... Better yet, they should just show up and not pay the table fee. Or grab the statue, say "Bullocks!" and bolt.

Depleted uranium
This is an interesting article which didn't get much play recently but might be worth a second look:
["UK radiation jump blamed on Iraq shells"] and a more thorough opinion piece here: ["The Queen's Death Star"].
In 1998, when I ran for Congress in Massachusetts' 8th District, I was invited to a lecture about the dangers of DU usage being put on by local Arab-American activists at Somerville High School. I was the only candidate who responded to their invitation or even showed up to other events sponsored by the group.
The lecture was surprisingly covered by NECN because it was right around the same time the President Clinton was bombing aspirin factories and other such nonsense [I got no play in the coverage but that was OK, the event wasn't about me]. Since most of the candidates were Democrats, and wouldn't speak against their president's actions, I was also the only one who talked about the issue. The bombing campaigns were wrong then; the bombing campaigns were wrong in 2003.
To this day, I can still recall the endless array of photos on display at the lecture of some of the Iraqi victims who had been affected by DU shells. The photos, especially of the women and newborns, were some of the most horrific you would ever see in your life. I won't go into the gory details ... but you can just imagine. The pictures will forever be seared in my mind like a bad dream.
I know in my heart that Jesus would never want anyone to be treated that way. And no one who proclaimed to follow the political philosophy of Jesus Christ would ever allow this to another human being, especially over oil reserves or to get a little intern sex scandal off the front page.
Years later, my father and sister came to visit us in Boston and we made the rounds of some of the tourist sites in the middle of a freezing January day. As we were passing by the Park Street Station, some of those same activists were standing outside with signs as we walked by. "Anthony, Anthony," one of them shouted to me, as we waved and walked over for a quick minute. The guy heaped praise on me for forwarding their cause against DU during the campaign, telling my father what a good man I was. It was a little embarrassing but when my dad looked at me and said, "He sure is," and gave me a pat on the back, it was made all the more meaningful.
It is always important to remember that it isn't whether you win or lose the fight, it is all about what you stand for and the issues you forward as a human being.

The continuing demise of local radio is covered in this recent piece in the Boston Globe:
["Mixed signals"]. The line about the lady coming in just to read the school lunch menu was pretty funny. Now that is local. Do kids even eat school lunches anymore? And how about that price tag: $4.5 million for two 1,000 AM stations granted, on the outskirts of the Metro Boston market [11th in the country]. Wow. In reaction to the sale of WJDA, the fledging and award-winning WADT on the South Shore is making a play for more listeners: ["WATD to broaden its listening base"].

There is an interesting Flash file here of someone's take on Kubrick's "2001: A Space Odyssey":
["Kubrick 2001"]. Interestingly, this got me thinking about Zacharia Sitchin's books and I did a Google and found his site here: ["Zacharia Sitchin"].

The Village Voice and 9-11
The Village Voice, one of the premiere papers in the country for investigative journalism, has been delving into the 9-11 situation a lot lately. Last week, there were a slew of articles on some of the theories and people trying to advance some "conspiratorial" concepts:

["The Seekers"]
["Conspiracy 101"]
["The Usual Suspects"]
["Your Turn: Ground Zero stories"]