Democratic Underground

Blog Box

December 9, 2005
Compiled by Delilah Boyd, A Scrivener's Lament

Failure, Fruitcake, and Fab Blog Finds

A day without an O'Reilly lie is like a day without... well, we won't know what that's like until the day after the falafel fellow's obit is published, will we? Ann Coulter tells rowdy students to go back to their dorms and masturbate, the death penalty debate heats up, and uh oh - Froomkin's causing WaPo Wars! Or is he? Plus: the Carnival Of The Liberals is in town! And what makes Com•Log•ic's blogger, Magickmuffin, tick?

Bushspeak (Do-Over Edition)

George W. Bubble Boy wraps up his "I invaded Iraq because I wanted to" speaking tour by claiming that the whole world thought there were WMDs (lie) and, besides, it was all Saddam's fault (lie); but he (Bush) takes responsibility for the bad intel guys workin' for him, and he's gonna fix it (colossal lie).

Brumley's Blog has the 411 on all four speeches and gives the prez four points (out of a possible 10) - one point for each speech.

Hmm. Who parented this failure? Oh yeah, President and Mrs. Failure.

Thanks to DUer "Fridays Child" for the Bush Booze Belch screen capture!

U.S. State Dept. Says "Fear Everything"

Rob Mercatante at elcanche (Words & Images from Guatemala) also dissects the latest Bush speech and even shares the U.S. State Dept.'s "Be Afraid of Everything, Everyone, Every Place" public announcement update. Tennessee Guerilla Women post a fab anti-Bush quote from Viggo Mortensen, and also note that Bubble Boy's approval rating is back in the 30's.

Freepers and Other Fruitcakes

I have nothing against fruitcake (except for that whole "taste, texture and 1000-year shelf life" thing). In fact, I've posted my favorite (hic!) fruitcake recipe on my blog, A Scrivener's Lament. I strongly recommend that freepers and other fruitcakes follow the directions very carefully... before reading the sidebar entry, "Ammunition In O'Reilly's War On Christmas". Speaking of fruitcakes...

Try spelling O'Reilly without l-i-e. Can't be done. Media Matters has an entire database of O'Reilly's Lies (updated regularly), which includes print and video links. And The Brad Blog has the audio link to the O'Lielly caller who claimed that Bill inspired a customer to stiff a waitress because she dared to say, "Happy Holidays." Hey, Scrooge O'Reilly, stop preying on tip-dependent food transport technicians.

Psst! The Atheist Alliance is in the house, Loofah Boy! And there's an army of bloggers recording your every move: I'm the Mama, News Hounds, Big Tree (who cites Ann Coulter's "go back to your dorm and masturbate" rant), and countless others.

By the way, there really is a war on Christmas, O'Reilly - but it's being waged by Mrs. Fields and the Carvel Ice Cream Cake Company. Livejournal's Halloween Jack has the, um, scoop:

Carvel's Santa Claus ice cream cake is nothing more than a redecorated Fudgie the Whale.

No, seriously, look:

Apparently the good folks at Carvel thought no one would notice. As if. The hat's a stupid shape, the beard's all wrong, and everything about this screams "I'm Fudgie turned sideways, ho ho ho. Merry Whalemas."

Imagine my shock, then, to discover that Carvel is not the only baked goods corporation guilty of reusing existing shapes for their Santa-themed holiday comestibles. While Anya and I were at the mall yesterday, I snapped this terribly-lit phone pic of the display case at Mrs. Field's Cookies:

I spewed coffee on my keyboard when Halloween Jack called Carvel "the Enron of frozen baked goods." And the comments after the post are hilarious: "The Mrs. Fields version looks like a Sodomize Me Santa;" and "Yeah, unquestionably Jolly Old Saint Ass."

Novak: Don't Bug Me!

JABBS jabs Robert Novak's little luncheon speech bombshell ("Bush can settle CIA leak riddle, Novak says"). JABBS writes, "Should the media "bug" the president? Do we need to have a "what did you know and when did you know it" moment?"

'Fraid so, JABBS. But who can do it without getting swiftly swiftboated?

WaPo Wars

Eternal Hope cites Dan Froomkin's "Bush hasn't taken Iran regime change off the table" quote and suggests that Bush is in a box... just like Saddam. (What? No bubble?)

So Iran is still on the table? No wonder Froomkin is in the middle of the Washington Post's war on... er, itself. B12 Partners Solipsism figures that some uptight WaPo reporters and Bush administration fruitcakes (as cited in Salon.com) are confusing Froomkin, who speaks truth to power through facts and opinion, with the paper's "credible" White House reporters.

Stop laughing and yelling "Like Woodward?" Froomkin is merely the latest Marat in the bathtub, joining the Baltimore Sun's Jules Witcover, the LA Times' Robert Sheer, CBS News' Dan Rather, and a long line of diplomatic and military truth-tellers now residing in BushCo Retaliationland.

The Dirt Downunder

The Froomkin opposite? Apparently the Sydney Morning Herald's officially-sanctioned "blogger" thinks that the rest of the blogosphere will just yawn when entries change and/or disappear. A Yobbo's View (From The Arse End of the Anglosphere) takes Andrew West to task for his shoddy reporting/blogging on the Cronulla riots. West began this week by blaming "trailer trash" racists. Then he admitted that he "was 'a little uneasy' about seeing a woman in Islamic dress in Australia," and then he deleted the "uneasy" post and pasted in an explanation. Finally, he deleted the explanation... leaving only the "trailer trash" racists post.

As Yobbo points out: "Andrew has not yet worked out how to delete posts from the archive entirely, so they are still available for reading at this time." Ouch! That's gotta hurt. The jury's still out, though, on whether it was West or his editors who deleted the posts. Makes one wonder, doesn't it?

Does anyone else find this newspaper blogging phenomenon seriously screwy? You can't have it both ways, Morning Herald. Even if you call it a blog, we will fact check your ass and call you on your bullshit!

The Terminator's Death Penalty Decision

I know - I'm not the only person making that connection this week. The death penalty debate (triggered by the number 1000) has pitted brother against brother and friend against friend. Thousands of bloggers have weighed in, including Harry Schwartz and View From 103. In addition, The Ruminations on America Project posts valuable historical information and current links to Truthout (California Governor's decision), RomanCatholic.com (Explanation of Biblical belief), StreetGangs.com (History of LA gangs), DeathPenalty.org (History of the death penalty), and InsideOut.org (DNA testing) to help us draft informed-opinion blog entries.

Fab Blog Finds

Liberals just do it better! Of course, you knew that. Brainshrub.com's Paul -V- showcases the best of the best liberal blogs in December's Carnival of the Liberals' Number 1. He writes in the premier edition: "Blogging is about writing, and, writing is about thinking clearly. There is NOTHING, ladies and gentlemen, that liberals do better than think clearly!"

Congrats to the 10 bloggers who made the December final cut: Spun and Spinning, Bloodless Coup, The Blue Republic, Hughes For America, Neural Gourmet, Mad Kane, Paul Gowder's Experimental Non-Ranting Blog, Shakespeare's Sister, State of the Day, and Throw away your TV: Video Blog.

For those with little (or biz-restricted) online time, I suggest either taking advantage of the site's XML feed or pasting these ten top-drawer blog posts into a Word doc for portability. You won't want to miss a single syllable!

Blogger Profile

Last week, I lauded Magickmuffin's blog, Com•Log•ic, as a brilliant recipe for blog success. This week, I had a chance to chat with Magickmuffin and learn more about the blogger behind Com•Log•ic.

Magickmuffin started blogging for several reasons: to inform people about what is happening within our government - since the "corporate media" has been a failure in this regard; to be a little more creative with information by creating cartoons and providing a little comedy; and to try and make a "Karmic" difference. This way, Magickmuffin hopes to add some sort of balance to all the hatred generated by the Right Wing Propaganda Noise Machine.

Magickmuffin uses a modified template and says that having no formal training in web languages has made the learning process enlightening, as well as frustrating at times. Ever resourceful, problems with a header issue led Magickmuffin to a blogger's forum, where someone knew exactly what needed to be done.

(Note: The DU Computer Help and Support Group has bailed me out of a "Bush Brazillion" HTML post and template snafus!)

A graphic artist by profession, Magickmuffin uses Photoshop and ComicLife. (Sorry, PC fans. ComicLife is a Mac only program.) Other than the costs of the computer and the software, Magickmuffin's blogging experience has been free, including templates and server space.

Magickmuffin's future plans include adding a series of questions to accompany the commentary on each cartoon and inviting readers "to help make some logical sense of this mess we are in at the present time in our history."

One of my favorite features at Com•Log•ic, is Magickmuffin's ability to craft new words, like Trans•Spin•dental: the act of spinning something until you enter a trance-like state from your head spinning so fast.

Magickmuffin advises new bloggers to embrace both exploration and patience:

Take breaks to clear your head; find a forum to help you when you need it; don't be afraid to ask for help; and always keep a cool head. Also, if you're tweaking a template, be sure to save your pre-existing code somewhere else, just in case you may need it later.

Last year, Magickmuffin created a movie called "Smoking Guns Mushroom Clouds," a commentary on the lead up to the Iraq war, in which BushCo cabinet members explode into mushroom clouds. I can't wait to see it!

Let's face it: George W. Bush is a first-rate failure, and his few remaining supporters are certifiable fruitcakes. No amount of do-over speeches will ever justify his "booze belch" approach to foreign and/or domestic policy. No amount of trans•spin•dental terpsichore can save him, either.

As long as we keep recording the BushCo lies and speaking truth to power, we all have a chance to make a real difference. Blog it for the country. Blog it for the world. Just blog it, y'all!

Know a hot blog that needs some coverage? Send your recommendations to Delilah.

Editor's note: the Blog Box will return after the holidays on Friday January 7th.

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