Bring on the Night

Hacker: Don’t tell me about the press. I know exactly who reads the papers: the Daily Mirror is read by people who think they run the country; The Guardian is read by people who think they ought to run the country; The Times is read by people who actually do run the country; the Daily Mail is read by the wives of the people who run the country; the Financial Times is read by people who own the country; The Morning Star is read by people who think the country ought to be run by another country; and The Daily Telegraph is read by people who think it already is.
Sir Humphrey: Prime Minister, what about the people who read The Sun?
Bernard: Sun readers don’t care who runs the country, as long as she’s got big tits.

I’ve been re-acquainting myself with the brilliant BBC series Yes, Minister this weekend. (The source of the above.) I highly recommend checking it out if you are as much of a political junkie as I am.

US Threatens to boycott UN conference on Racism because it threatens to describe Israel as an apartheid like state
Well….isn’t it?

Israel and Canada announced several months ago that they will boycott the Geneva conference, which was intended to carry forward the work of a contentious U.N. conference on racism and intolerance held in 2001 in Durban, South Africa. Israel and the United States walked out of the Durban conference in protest against delegates’ attempts to brand Israel as an apartheid state guilty of racism.

Admittedly, this isn’t something I’ve thought about before. The International Criminal Court defines Apartheid as crimes* “committed in the context of an institutionalized regime of systematic oppression and domination by one racial group over any other racial group or groups and committed with the intention of maintaining that regime.”
It goes on to list such crimes as homicide, slavery, sexual violence, enslavement, forced relocation, deprivation of physical liberty, and collective persecution. (There’s a more detailed definition per the UN located here.) Which about fits the bill. Please make no mistake, I’m not saying (by any means) that the Palestinians are blameless…just that they’ve gotten a raw deal and for some reason the US is institutionally committed to maintaining it.
I think I feel opposition to this boycott coming on. Especially given that so far, the Obama administration does seem hell bent on More of the Same re: the Mid-East and Israel as every administration since, well, 1947.

Well that’s okay because the EU is pledging 556 million dollars in aid to Palestine yes, Palestine.

The pledge will be presented formally Monday in Egypt at the donors’ meeting, which is to focus on gathering international aid to rebuild the Gaza Strip. Israel’s three-week offensive there, which ended last month, caused widespread damage.
The executive’s pledge is just part of the EU’s total pledge to the Palestinians. The 27-member bloc’s individual nations were expected to announce their own pledges at the conference. The EU as a whole is the largest donor to the Palestinians. It now gives some €1 billion a year in aid.

It goes on to say that the UN is taking steps to ensure it doesn’t wind up in the hands of Hamas (Not sure I have that much faith in the UN.) But it does elicit visions of a pro-Palestine EU and pro-Israeli US coming to disagreement in the next ten to twenty years.

And elsewhere in the realm of Failures of American Foreign Policy China’s denouncing the US human rights record is still in the news – and you know I’d really like to know what they said. Of course, there is ample proof that both countries are just utterly full of shit.

Last weekend, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton held talks in Beijing with China’s leaders and, in public, the issue of human rights was barely mentioned.

Domestically, Americans are increasingly not buying the Obama administrations assurances on budget matters and it’s about time. Has the honeymoon finally ended America?

Apparently, it soon will be ending for the world wide web, at least in part – manifesting a trend many have been predicting for some time now, Hearst Corp continues to try to remain in the early part of the 20th century by returning to a newspaper-like availability policy for it’s online material – and really, I think that at this rate, likely the internet and all of it’s freedoms and limitless possibilities will largely have been legislated out by 2020, save by those willing to serve time for felonies, leaving the rest of us with corporate sponsored nonsense. Which is bizarre to me, as the self same media conglomerates are increasingly making their television pablum (as opposed to their news pablum) more available on-line. Even if much of it is Law & Order Special Victims Unit or any of those shows that fetishize rape, molestation, and incest. (A replicant from Blade Runner would never get modern network television because there’s an entire subculture of viewers that gets weird vicarious victimization and emotional release from these shows.)
Anyway, backing away from the tangential rant, more on Hurstcorp moving it’s head firmly into the middle twentieth century can be found here.

Are threats of bank nationalization to discourage foreign investment? An interesting consequence (and one that would have made me laugh and laugh and laugh had this story gone out on BushCo’s watch, even though quite clearly it was in motion during the Bush administration.)

The battered GOP plans it’s super villain-like comeback

Steele, Maryland’s former lieutenant governor, vowed to bring all ethnic and racial groups, and the “the hip-hop generation,” into the GOP. He also appointed himself Obama’s toughest critic, throwing a rapper’s boast at the new president: “How’ya like me now?”

Oh hell, does this make anyone else (at least those of us Americans who went to public school) think of those stupid rallies in high school where Christian groups would come in to give anti-drug/selling Jesus assemblies who used “hip hop” to “look cool?” (there is a reason I’m using quotes there…) Or how, for most of the nineties anyone trying to talk to (well, lecture) kids would apply some stupid white bread “hip hop” filter to the proceedings? That’s about what this article leads me to expect.
As for the rest, I don’t buy this ‘inclusive’ bit until I personally can show up for a party meeting without being made to feel like I fucked the dog or something. Trust me, were the GOP to jettison their stone age social policy and decide to embrace fiscal conservatism**, they’d have a chance of getting my vote. I’d be really in favor of that. But I’ll be very very surprised if that happens in the next 8- 12 years, if ever.

That’s it for me for now. Beware the ides of march.

* Crimes as similar to crimes defined as “against humanity” which, legally, I believe would be defined as war crimes.

** Continuing on from my last post – okay look, the GOP is conservative in name only on any kind of real issue. I harp on how fiscally conservative the GOP isn’t so I’ll grab another of their favorite buzz words – State’s rights? Bullshit – that refers to that thing that they do to “turn it over to the states” when they don’t want to appear supportive of legislation that isn’t popular at their klan/promise keeper rally or whatever. That’s it. Beyond that, their policies bear striking resemblance to “Fuck the states.”
As for the first point, if you actually associate fiscal conservatism with the GOP then you really have two options –
1. Show me your cryogenic capsule where you agelessly slept away the past 40 years, as I’ve always wanted to see one.
2. Please be shooting yourself in the head, directly I’ll ammend this to Please be Getting Out of My Gene Pool.
Look, with every passing year I find myself identifying more and more as a conservative. But that doesn’t mean “Jesus Whoring Hate Monger” to me. Nor does it mean “supping at the table of any lobbyist who will pay” or “sucking corporate cock.” Just in case there was some ambiguity there.

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~ by Auntie Ranty on March 1, 2009.

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