Thursday, April 12, 2007

ImusGate Demonstrates What's Really Wrong With America

I've always been fascinated by the phenomenon known as "media frenzy." Why is it that just as one sensational case seems to be in its last throes there's always another that steps right in to take its place: Anna Nicole Smith, meet Don Imus. Is it that the media itself helps create the fodder for the frenzy in some highly manipulative attempt at self-preservation? Just as the dope pusher keeps his users perpetually stoned? I am aghast at how much attention both the media and its trash-addicted public will dedicate to perhaps the least important matters in the country. When there is so many more important issues to report on and stir public debate, the media deftly obfuscates its responsibilities by feeding the beast with diversionary crap. It's sickening. And it's getting worse.

This week the vultures are feeding on ImusGate. The frenzy is out of control. It's hard to imagine that there's any more room on the bandwagon for anyone else to pile on and take a swat at the pathetic shock jock. To be sure, the poor blathering idiot Imus brought this mess on himself last week when he made a moronic, highly offensive comment about the Rutgers women's basketball team, calling them "nappy-headed ho's." As a result, he's been publicly flogged and dragged over the coals non-stop, despite a constant chorus of what I consider to be very heartfelt, genuine apologies. But the vultures do not want apologies. They do not want redemption. And they offer no forgiveness. They want Imus' head on a black platter. MSNBC announced Wednesday that they're canceling his simulcast show. And several major advertisers--including Sprint, GM and American Express--have pulled their sponsorships.

Most people who know me know that I am as liberal as they come. I am a true lefty Democrat, and I champion the rights of women, gays, minorities, the poor and the oppressed. Nothing pushes my buttons more than bigotry, prejudice, ignorance and intolerance. I abhor racism and racists. But I am truly disgusted by ImusGate. The double-standards are mind-numbing. We allow shameless racial-antagonists like the Rev. Al Sharpton to destroy people's lives (Steven Pagones) and then reward them with the honor of running for U.S. president. Rev. Jesse Jackson is still a media darling and respected civil rights leader despite his 1982 "HymieTown slur. We slap the wrists of on-air bigoted criminals like Rush Limbaugh because he's part of a much bigger political machine. Ann Coulter, the right-wing SpinWitch, calls presidential candidate John Edwards a "faggot" and continues to sell millions of books and do talk shows. William Bennett can say that aborting "every black baby in this country" would reduce the crime rate, and he somehow still has a thriving media career. It's ok for MTV and network television execs to poison our children's minds with garbage programming. Corporate America capitalistically attaches itself to gangsta rappers who extol the virtues of drugs, violence and misogyny--where the terms bitches, ho's, muthufucka and nigga' make up just about every lyric--and then in a fit of supreme self-righteousness and sanctimony punishes Don Imus in order to publicly self-cleanse. None of this excuses the racist comment Imus made, which may ultimately result in his firing, and perhaps rightly so. But this hypocrisy is enough to make ya sick.

What's worse, as a society, we allow George Bush and his cronies to rape the constitution. We allow our government to lie about war and kill our young men and women in the process. We allow Republicans to cut funding for programs that benefit the poor and minorities. We allow voters in minority areas to be disenfranchised and their rights violated. We allow the oil companies to push fuel prices to record levels. We allow Republicans for ten years to keep the minimum wage at $5.15 per hour. And no one seems to give a shit because they're too busy obsessing over Anna Nicole Smith, Britany Spears and now Don Imus.

Wake up America. Nothing is going to change in this country until we get our priorities straight and demonstrate some consistency.

On another subject......we could use your help at The Adrienne Shelly Foundation, a non-profit organization dedicated in my wife's honor to help carry out her spirit and passion, with the goal of assisting women filmmakers. As you may know, Adrienne was brutally killed in NYC on November 1, 2006. Through the Foundation, her commitment to filmmaking lives on. We've finalized a scholarship with NYU's Tisch School of the Arts/Kanbar Institute of Film; and grants with Columbia University, American Film Institute, NY Women in Film and Television, the Independent Feature Project, and the Nantucket Film Festival. Other initiatives will follow. Please visit our website to learn more about our mission and to make a donation. Every little contribution helps preserve Adrienne's legacy, and to help create something positive out of this horrible tragedy. Thank you.

Adrienne's film "Waitress" will hit theatres May 2nd. Early reviews have been terrific. A link to the trailer is below. Enjoy.


Anonymous said...

Well, we have two college teams in the mix. A Rutgers women's basketball team that is largely black, and a Duke men's lacrosse team that is almost (save for one player) exclusively white. A white man insulted the Rutgers team with a mean-spirited quip. No season cancelled. No coach fired. No arrests. Nobody on the basketball team had to spend tens of thousands of dollars on defense attorneys. They were insulted. The were the targets of a stupid racially charged remark ... but that's pretty much it. But how about Duke? The Duke team members were accused of a crime. Attorneys were hired. Coaches fired. Seasons cancelled. Reputations damaged. DNA swabs were taken. Charges were filed. The district attorney was out there saying that a rape most definitely had occurred. Now we find that they were completely innocent. In the meantime the white man who made the stupid remark about the Rutgers basketball team is being attacked and vilified as if he was a mass murderer. The black woman who made the false charges of rape against the lacrosse team is going to walk. In fact, you can fully expect the civil rights establishment --- the same civil rights establishment that is united in their efforts to destroy Don Imus -- circle the wagons around Crystal Gail Mangum and protect her at all costs.

Anonymous said...

with respect to the question of Crystal Gail Mangum, please read the folling!!

Sunday, April 16, 2006
Rev. Jesse Jackson steps into the Duke lacrosse spotlight
The Associated Press reports:

The Rev. Jesse Jackson said Saturday his Rainbow/Push Coalition will pay the college tuition of a woman who told police she was raped by members of Duke University's men's lacrosse team while working as a stripper -- no matter the outcome of the case.

"I can't wait ... to talk with her and have prayer with her, because our organization is committed, when she's physically and emotionally able ... to provide for her the scholarship money to finish school so she will never ... again have to stoop that low to survive," he said from Chicago in a telephone interview with The Associated Press.

When asked, the civil rights leader also said his group will pay for the woman's tuition even if her report proves false. …

butch said...

Whatever you may say about the problems in the world if you look at the history of race in this country there is no real double standard. Blacks have been fighting for a level playing field for years. This is part of that fight. The Imus fight was not a bad fight to choose. He should've known better. There is no excuse for that insensitivity. He is professional. The people have spoken. The marketers are speaking. He should be fired. Whether the machine feeds on this or not doesn't make a difference. Whatever you may think about Sharpton's history, inconsistent and self promoting, he places himself in the middle of these fights and sometimes he gets it right. Whites should be respectful, period. Imus is being schooled. So be it. There is no tit for tat. There is no excuse or explanation for what he said.He can be contrite but he should be fired. Principles before personalities.

Anonymous said...

well said Andy, VERY well said. I saw the founder of BET on Hardball last night and what he said was ridiculous. He was making the point that the outrage over Imus came from his show being a political platform for politicians to appear on and talk about issues, whereas his network is a music network where people tune into because they want to see what they show---videos of pimps and "niggas" smoking weed with 40-50 "bitches" around them with their tits practically hanging out. In other words, it was WORSE for Don Imus to say "ho" because of the format of his show and it should have a higher standard, whereas BET has a lower standard so broadcasting the same shit, or even WORSE shit on HIS network is ACCEPTABLE. Do you believe this shit? I was sitting in my chair practically yelling at the screen saying "IF RACIST REMARKS ARE WRONG, THEY'RE WRONG! IT DOESNT MATTER WHAT THE FUCKING FORMAT OF A SHOW IS!" Andy, unfortunately we live in a non-caring, "who gives a fuck" society and NOTHING matters to anyone unless they are directly affected by whatever the issue is. Most people dont give a fuck about 9/11 anymore, unless you had a son, daughter, father or mother die in the towers, Pentagon or Shanksville. I believe 9/11 was an inside job---which is WHY Bush is destroying the Constitution and America as we know it. People like you Andy, and others like Bill Maher dont agree that 9/11 was an inside job, and thats ok to believe that---Im not condemning you because you dont---but you and Maher both agree with me that the RESULT of 9/11 was to enable Bush to go to war based on lies, destroy the Constitution, destroy civil liberties and I GUARANTEE you, when the next attack happens, and i do mean WHEN....Martial Law will be implemented and dissenters will be placed in internment camps which we HAVE in America right NOW, courtesy of our friends at FEMA. The difference between me and you and Maher is, I believe 9/11 was either orchestrated or allowed to happen in ORDER to make these things happen (read the Project for the New American Century)--and you believe these things Bush is doing is just his reaction to 9/11 and he's going too far. I believe it's all planned. (Read PNAC and you will see Im right). This country is going down the sithole FAST, and no one gives a 2 cent fuck. People are getting angrier that Sanjaya is still on American Idol than they are that they are paying 2.85 a gallon for gas or that 75% of our Bill of Rights are now invalid.I love my country, but goddamn I hate the stupidity that resides here!!!

Anonymous said...

It's all crap to divert attention to what is really going on with Bush and his minions.

Why else do the so called news shows spend so much time on stuff that doesn't matter?

But notice that no matter how hateful the rightie talking heads (Rush, Savage, Beck, Coulter, Hannity, O'Reilly) speak out, no one yells to get rid of them. Why is that?

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...

Imus, Anna Nicole Smith, Rosie/Trump, Hillary/Barack, global warming, all distractions. As the mass media creates illusions, Big Brother clamps down by opening our mail, suspending habeas corpus, stealing private lands, banning books like "America Deceived" from Amazon,America Deceived (book) rigging elections, conducting warrantless wiretaps and starting wars based on blatant lies. Soon, the sinking of an Aircraft Carrier(by Mossad) will occur and the US will 'retaliate' against Iran. Which AIPAC-lobbying country benefit's from that?

Anonymous said...

I agree; the media orgy over Imus is too much. You can see the spotlight has taken a visible toll on Imus’ health; he looks ghastly.

I guess I must have missed it... Can you site a reference to the part where the legal establishment in NC has cleared these Duke boys? I realize that the prosecutions did not continue, but as in my post on the previous Ostroy topic where he intones "Tawana Brawley", intimidation of these victims can make them back down with their accusations. Remember, rape is not about sex, it is about dominance, fear, intimidation and violence and the heat of a national spotlight is hot. Look at the affect on Imus, who has media experience and has been a fixture in a different light for years. Imagine this pressure on a poor minority with out that savvy.

I previously posted about my friend and her co-worker being intimidated in the Wappingers Falls/Beacon area to stop pursuing rape and sexual harassment charges against a local restaurant owner.

Having been raised from a baby in that area and having seen the activity of the KKK (the Imperial Dragon ran a fence contracting company near Newburgh on Rt. 9W north and was open with his activities), I know there is a deep racial hatred in that region that dates back to the white flight from the metro area in the late 50’s, 60’s & 70’s.
I was a skeptic at first concerning Brawley, but my friend’s experience schooled me. I learned the local history and realized I was surrounded and raised among racists (funny that you don’t see it while in the thick of it, among childhood friends where it is taught and reinforced). As I grew older my understanding of racism and sexism improved.

Thanks for the additional background on the Brawley matter.
While I cannot remember any direct reference to Pagones being named as a perpetrator at the time, my memory says he was accused of a cover-up. I also remember that in the grand jury investigation, Brawley left the state rather than appear in front of a proceeding that was seen as a sham. Her story and testimony was never taken for the grand jury or the civil lawsuit as she was already threatened with arrest and criminal prosecution for her claim before these legal actions. This intimidation seemed all too similar to what happened 10 or so years later to my friend and her co-worker. What a coincidence. I became convinced Brawley was raped and it was racially motivated. I even believe an officer may have been involved.

I guess when faced with this intimidation in a he-said she-said situation, the best thing to do is drop it. Score another round for blaming the victim.

Speaking of victims, I can now see Imus as a victim. He is a victim of his upbringing and the people who surround him who have never called him out, therefore enabling him to speak this way. Yet I won’t shed any tears for him.

You remind me of my racist friends I grew up with; in denial. It is not so much in what you are trying to say than in how you say it, the words you choose and the examples you choose. Sort of like Imus....

I believe you missed the point of the BET fellow.

Imus' show is used as a political platform and it does make his comment more reprehensible.

"videos of pimps and "niggas" smoking weed with 40-50 "bitches" around them with their tits practically hanging out. In other words, it was WORSE for Don Imus to say "ho" because of the format of his show and it should have a higher standard, whereas BET has a lower standard so broadcasting the same shit, or even WORSE shit on HIS network is ACCEPTABLE. Do you believe this shit?" These are your words and a miss-characterization of what was said. They do not in any way reflect what BET is about or what he was inferring. Music is only part of the BET content, Can you look at any popular contemporary broadcast medium and not see these artists? It is pervasive. I believe he reffered indirectly to the market; if it wasn't in demand, it wouldn't be there.That I believe was the thrust of his comments.
Gold and platinum records aren't given to contemporary artists who sell only to minority consumers. In those limited markets it takes years and years. These artist's material are hot sellers, and that is what you'll see on BET.

Anonymous said...

Andy, I could have not said it better. This is one of your master pieces of writing for sure. I mirror everything you've said but think of this as well. Is this another Bill Moyer, Dan Rather "I'll get you off the air sucker" tactic? As soon as you have a talk show personality start getting in the Presidents face something happens to force them off the air waves. Even if it's a back door approach which this one was, dumb luck on Imus, but it was the door they were looking for.

Yes what he said was dumb, but it was dump to the people he said it about, case closed. When he calls Hillary "evil" is that hurtful to me or you, or just to Hillary? When Imus starts calling Bush and Cheney war criminals now they start getting pissed and will not stand for that kind of banter. Dan Rather was taken off (FIRED) because of Bush's military record. Bill Moyers was canned because of his stories on NOW about this administration. Getting all over Imus is just another example of who controls the media and it's far from any Liberals.

We are NOT a free country and this is just one more example.

Anonymous said...

maybe their hair was nappy at the time Imus saw them. That is a common put down in the black sub-culture. They use it all the time. I demand integration! The integration of black and white............put-downs!!


Anonymous said...

Nobody on the basketball team had to spend tens of thousands of dollars on defense attorneys. They were insulted. The were the targets of a stupid racially charged remark ... but that's pretty much it. But how about Duke? The Duke team members were accused of a crime. Attorneys were hired. Coaches fired. Seasons cancelled. Reputations damaged. DNA swabs were taken.


If you have not noticed, there are two sets of rules.

Anonymous said...

In fact, you can fully expect the civil rights establishment --- the same civil rights establishment that is united in their efforts to destroy Don Imus -- circle the wagons around Crystal Gail Mangum and protect her at all costs.

They are doing thier J-O-B. She has the CIVIL RIGHT to run scams on rich white kids. It's all in how you twist it.

Anonymous said...

it was WORSE for Don Imus to say "ho" because of the format of his show and it should have a higher standard, whereas BET has a lower standard so broadcasting the same shit, or even WORSE shit on HIS network is ACCEPTABLE.

They are done with the 'equal rights' biz, they want more!

Anonymous said...

Al, no---it is YOU that doesnt get it----you didnt have to re-post my comment, ironically enough, I actually KNOW what I was ME that typed it. I put the words I used..."niggas" and "bitches" in quotations BECAUSE I was referencing the words, I dont USE them myself. Just like "ho", those words originated from the black hip hop culture. The quotations were basically saying they use those words with each OTHER---I dont use them. That BET founder was spinning and you KNOW it. He was justifying why HIS network does stuff as supposed to what Imus was doing on his show. MY point is: If a comment is wrong, its wrong REGARDLESS of the format----am I not correct? If Im NOT correct, then when is it RIGHT to say "ho"? That is EXACTLY what that BET founder was saying--he was saying when it's used or portrayed on HIS network, then its RIGHT. You fell for his justification of his networks content and actions. I wasnt dumb enough to fall for it. YOU are the one who doesnt get it. This whole thing was an assault JUST on Imus, because 50 Cent, Ludacris and all the other thug rappers will continue to say "bitches" and "hos" and Jackson and Sharpton wont be ANYWHERE TO BE FOUND when it does!

Anonymous said...

Andy -- This is brilliant and I wish it could be published in newspapers for greater numbers to read. I am a "bleeding heart liberal" but I am sick of Sharpton and Jackson. Have they apologized to the Duke boys for condemning them and forgetting "innocent until proven guilty."? And, when you demand equality, things change. Chilvalry/social deference to women is dead since "women's lib" Who cares? Women act like the equals they are. They pull their on weight.

I taught school and saw very bright black children deliberately perform poorly because they didn't want "to be like "whitey". They now have to act like the equals they are, and excel.

And, too, people in positions of power like presidents, judges, CEO's etc have to stop judging from their personal, religious, and philosophical points of view and judge according the facts and the law. I heard on tne news today that CEOs in some of the companies withdrawing adverisiting on Imus in the Morning withdrew because they are black. Gone are the days when there are those who like Kennedy say "I will not be influenced by the Pope, or the equivalent.

And finally, everything I've written is moot, because I believe along with the other bloggers that this Administration got rid of Imus because of what he was saying about them.

Anonymous said...

Now CBS has fired Imus too---the final blow. This is fucking unbelievable. Rush Limpballs can mock a man with Parkinsons disease on his radio show and NOT A GODDAMNED THING happens. Ann Coulter can make terroristic threats to the New York Times employees and NOT A GODDAMNED THING happens. Bill O' LIElly can THREATEN the life of 9/11 truth professor Kevin Barrett on the air, and NOT A GODDAMNED THING happens. Pat Roberston can call for the assassination of Hugo Chavez on his show, and NOT A GODDAMNED THING happens! Saying "ho" is now WORSE than threatening peoples lives, making terroristic threats, mocking people with diseases and calling for assassinations??????? This fucking country is really making me sick to my stomach!

Anonymous said...

Larry, when a complaint such as yours was made to one of the many panels, someone said that the people you mention are all powerful and can defend themselves, but Imus picked on innocent, helpless young girls who could not fight back. Of course the girls had never heard of Imus, didn't watch his show and had no idea what he'd said. However, that's their lame excuse. But you notice, they DO have an excuse for every charge. They are not backing off one bit.

Anonymous said...

Why are we classifying this? Why do people keep on saying "yes, but Imus' show was a political forum", now "its because the girls were innocent and cant defend themselves"---we keep CLASSIFYING this! WHY?????? Is "ho" wrong or is it right?? I believe it is WRONG, yes, Imus was an IDIOT for saying it----but if they fire him, then that SAME EXACT standard applies to EVERYONE else who uses the word "ho". I dont give a fuck who it's directed toward--I dont care what the format is, I dont care HOW you classify it. The word "ho" is either WRONG or it is RIGHT. STOP CLASSIFYING IT! I saw DICK Morris (the asshole) say tonight that Imus took a derogatory statement and made it funny. Well, shit---I guess Chris Rock's career is over now! If Imus cant say it, then Chris Rock cant say it! I bet you a million dollars when Chris Rock uses the word "nigger" again, you wont see Jackson or Sharpton within a 10,000 mile radius!!

Anonymous said...

You are starting to express your self better. Your comments at 6:41PM are right on, but I object to your use of the language.
Anon's comments at 8:20PM following Larry’s are close to reality in that when a person becomes a politician or media star, they give up many of their rights, such as most of their privacy. Once you get paid to put yourself out there, you're fair game for all critics and name callers. You become a target for satire, which appears defamatory, but cannot be prosecuted. Satire can be anything, and Imus could have used this defense, but he didn’t, well not forcefully, he fell on his sword, which is honorable. Yes, this also happened to Anne Coulter, although she seems to have bounced back. She ignored the critics, took her lumps and never admitted fault, unlike Imus. Imus may also bounce back from this, or maybe not, he seems to have taken this very hard and may not recover.

Like one of the players from Rutgers said, I can only paraphrase though, --we play this game for a cheap metal trophy, the comradery, and small bit of prestige, but mostly because we like the sport. You see, unlike all these talking heads and politicos, these students do not make their living as STUDENT basketball players.
More than likely, it was the market and not Jackson or Sharpton that took out Imus. His advertisers got hit in the pocketbook, were threatened with boycotts, and his networks got the message. That’s pure market place reality. The constant coverage by the media really put it over the top, but again it was because these girls are students and amateurs.

Anonymous said...

I'm with 2:43 on Obama. We now know he'll be swayed by his racial background instead of keeping a legal, impartial outlook. Unlike the other comment someone made about Kennedy and the Pope when he promised not to be swayed by his religious background. And right now on MSNBC they're talking about evangelicals taking "hits" which are offensive. When you get into politics and try to affect the laws of our country you are a target for comments. Evangelicals will legislate for evangelicals; Obama will favor blacks; Romeny the religious right; Hillary will favor women and so it goes. We have to find a fine, balanced, logical person to be our president and not someone with an "ax to graind" but one who only wants the best for our country and ALL it's people.

And are we a nation of immature minds? I'm sick of the "n word", the "b word" and the like. Can we talk like adults and send the children out of the room if we don't want them to hear certain words, while we conduct ourselves as adultsit?

Anonymous said...

Al @ 1:09,

Maybe you did miss it. The Duke Lacrosse players have been cleared from any wrong doing. The woman was LYING when she accused the lacrosse players of rape. Where's the outrage for this issue? The lacrosse team lost a lot, the rutgers basketball team lost nothing. Sharpton and Jackson both owe an apology to the Duke lacrosse players, as well as 30 years of other extortion victims of these race baiters.

Duke DA Apologizes to Players
Apr 12 04:52 PM US/Eastern
Associated Press Writer

DURHAM, N.C. (AP) - The local prosecutor who charged three Duke lacrosse players with raping a stripper apologized to the athletes Thursday and said the North Carolina attorney general's decision to drop the case was right.

"To the extent that I made judgments that ultimately proved to be incorrect, I apologize to the three students that were wrongly accused," Durham County District Attorney Mike Nifong said.

On Wednesday, Attorney General Roy Cooper not only dropped all remaining charges against the players Reade Seligmann, Collin Finnerty and David Evans, but pronounced them innocent and said they were the victims of Nifong's "tragic rush to accuse." Cooper branded Nifong a "rogue" prosecutor who was guilty of "overreaching."

"I have every confidence that the decision to dismiss all the charges was the correct decision based on that evidence," Nifong said.

In what appeared to be a plea to the athletes not to take any further action, such as a lawsuit, he said: "It is my sincere desire that the actions of Attorney General Cooper will serve to remedy any remaining injury that has resulted from these cases."

Nifong refused to answer any questions after handing the statement to an Associated Press reporter outside his office in Durham.

Seligmann's attorney, Jim Cooney, responded bitterly to the apology.

"You can accept an apology from someone who knows all the facts and simply makes an error," Cooney said. "If a person refuses to know all the facts and then makes a judgment, that's far worse—particularly when that judgment destroys lives."

Nifong stressed that it was own decision to remove himself from the case that gave Cooper's office the opportunity to review the evidence against the athletes.

"If I did not want to subject ... my own performance to such scrutiny—if, in other words, I had anything to hide—I could have simply dismissed the cases myself," he said. "The fact that I instead chose to seek that review should, in and of itself, call into question the characterizations of this prosecution as `rogue' and `unchecked.'"

Evans' attorney, Joseph Cheshire, accused Nifong of engaging in "revisionist history" with his statement.

"It's not an apology. It's an excuse. It's an attempt at an excuse," Cheshire said. "It's not an acceptance of responsibility. It's a self- serving attempt to excuse bad behavior."

Anonymous said...

It just saddens me when someone can lose their job over WORDS; words that were meant to be a joke. Yes, the joke offended people but isn't offensive speech still a part of free speech? Who gets to decide what's offensive? Do blacks and other minority groups have the monopoly on deciding what can or can't be said? Should people be fired every time someone gets offended? I believe that Don Imus was simply trying to be funny. Comedians such as Chris Rock (language), Martin Lawrence (language), George Lopez (Reconquista), etc. all have acts that offend people, but we have the freedom of choice to either listen or to tune them out.
Our society has already decided that making fun of white people is acceptable but making fun of any other ethnic group is strictly forbidden. I presume that's to punish white people for years of oppression? That's the double standard when it comes to speech about race or ethnicity. We should be careful where we tread when it comes to policing peoples' speech.

Anonymous said...

I like what you have written and I would add one thing. The Wall Street Journal is calling the media whirlwind "a digital brushfire" -great analogy. In the end it comes down to money - this time the circus stunk enough that sponsors are bailing and that really is the bottom line, isn't it?
What has changed? Not Imus - he has always been a self admitted schmuck. What is new is we are not capable of dealing with the flood of information we are getting. The news/entertainment mix up needs to be fixed or it is going to get us into more serious trouble. Interestingly enough Imus blurred the lines between news and fun and at this point he may be a victim of this newly powerful "information" source.

Anonymous said...

You are actually slightly incorrect that making fun of non-white ethnic groups is strictly forbidden. It actually depends on whether or not the left wing media adores you or not. It's all about selective and well-placed outrage.

"I've had a great relationship (with Indian Americans). In Delaware, the largest growth in population is Indian-Americans moving from India. You cannot go to a 7-Eleven or a Dunkin' Donuts unless you have a slight Indian accent. I'm not joking." - Joe Biden (D-DE) July 6, 2006

Biden noted Delaware was a border state and "a slave state that fought beside the North. That's only because we couldn't figure out how to get to the South - there were a couple of other states in the way." - Joe Biden (D-DE) November, 2006

During an event in St. Louis for Senate candidate Nancy Farmer, Clinton introduced a quote from Gandhi by saying, "He ran a gas station down in St. Louis." - Hillary Clinton 1/7/2004

Anonymous said...

Armstrong Williams in defending Imus got it right as far as I'm concerned. We've got to stop thinking of a black, white, gender, or any isolated problem, but think of them as national problems devoid of difference because a country is only as strong as its weakest link. We should do what we need to do so everybody functions, is educated, safe, respected, and helped when needed. If not for a general sense of decency, for the fact that it's practical for the good of the country as a whole. At least that's what I got out of what he said on Hardball.

Anonymous said...

No! What is Armstong Williams thinking? ;0) Folks would have to give up the notions that their "poor" lives are someone else's fault and get themselves off the streets and out of the gangs and actually be responsible for their own sucesses?! Dang,dog, there goes the welfare system! You mean it ain't cool to deal drugs and demean women, and run illegals across the border and join the KKK?

Well it's a good dream anyway.

Anonymous said...

You know, there are too many anonymous posters here. I was kinda able to tell a couple of you apart by your writing style; makes it difficult in understanding the continuity of the individual thought processes... You know, all you anons can just choose "other" when you post and make up a name so as to differentiate yourselves.

On another note, a lot of these past few Ostroy posts deal with sexism in part. What is amazing to me is the lack of comments by women in these threads. Perhaps this explains some of it:,,2051394,00.html

One can only imagine, with this in mind, why marginalized peoples don't post or post anonymously.

Anonymous said...

Well said anon 7:11PM!

Unfortunately I disagree with the follow up comment by anon 12:34AM, even said in jest ;~(

Well, I'm a poor person with an AS, AA, a BS, some grad school and $50,000 in student loan to pay for it all. I am being responsible for my own successes. But success in this country, at this time and over the past six years, has been in my experience, a string of dead end $7/hr service jobs that offer a $0.15 raises each year with health benefits you pay 60% or the total plan cost if your lucky enough to have any offered at all.
When you get tired of the abusive behavior of your employer with the scheduling, with no paid sick days and the threat of termination if you are actually sick and need the day off, and you maybe start to accrue unpaid vacation time after a year, maybe paid if you're lucky.... it's on to the next dead end job.
I am the first in my family's history living in the USA to get a degree and to also experience a lower standard of living with a greater debt. That's in five generations.
I can't knock the idea of the welfare system, but have you ever actually tried to get it? It is tough. It is mostly the least educated, from the poorest regions, with the least opportunity for multiple generations, the elderly or disabled who receive it; and the huge majority are white. I am offended by the apparent linkage to Hip Hop culture and the blatant racism implied above.
And then there are the welfare to work requirements. It has been shown that these beneficiaries are forced to take a job and actually lose money, due to transportation, child care and other expenses that are requirements if they are to work. They eventually can't keep the job. Even with the welfare supplement these families end up worse off than if they just received the benefit and stayed home caring for their own families. Is this good for families? Is this good for society?
I could not imagine being a minority coming from a lower income family from a poor neighborhood where the schools are substandard. What options are there if education fails, social safty nets fail, and the majority white society puts it's burden on you to make society work for you.
Of course people in desperation turn to crime, of course they become insulated from society at large, of course they are angry. I know I am and I have had all the white man's advantages.
If these inequities were addressed, it would cure this cultural segregation.

Meanwhile, Bill Gates wants "guest workers", who don't even have the same rights as citizens, to come into the US because they claim we don't have the trained workers; and corporate farming wants desperate "guest workers" who will work at a sub standard wage, again without the same rights as citizens. This just serves to drive down wages, increase the class divisions, drive up the class warfare and racial animus as the majority looks for scapegoats and save the corps a few more bucks for the CEO.

IMO, my "poor life" is the fault of someone else.

Anonymous said...

Poor you. You have a BS and you're making $7/hour ? Sounds to me like you don't have job skills, regardless of your 'higher education'. That is nobody's fault except your own. BTW, what is your degree in ? Don't blame someone else for your poor decision making.

BTW, did you know that if social security was privatized, and you died with an outstanding SS balance - it would go to your beneficiaries? Under the current social security system, when you die, your outstanding SS balance disappears. This system benefits white women most, and black men the least; due to average life expectancies.

If you really care about minorities, how about supporting privatized social security?? Of course, to do this, you'd have to break the socialist democratic mold and not listen to your union. They both like things the way they are today. Republicans tried to change this, unfortunately the democrats blocked it.

Anonymous said...

12:31 You must be a descendant of Marie Antionette with your total lack of understanding of how most of us live in the US. AL IS RIGHT> His experience has to be true - I know too many with his skill in the same situation. (Remeber the girl who went on the Internet to get donations to pay her student loan after she lost her good job and couldn't find another.?) With a license to teach and an experience teaching in NYC, I was given the minimum wage when I took a teaching job in the state where I moved. Then I took the H&R Block course in tax preparation and again, upon succssfully graduating, was offererd minimum. Women doing skilled care-giving in assisted living facilities here get minimum. Corporate, Republican and personal greed has brought us to this sorry condition. You wouldhave us privatize Soc. sec. so more corruption could exist.

Anonymous said...

Imus was removed by the Bush Administration becaue he ws getting too critical and too influencial. Rosie O'Donnell is next,

Anonymous said...

Al, I think the 12:34 am post was aimed at those who do little to promote themselves other than illegal activities that contribute to the underbelly of society.

I can relate to your tale of woe. I started out in my profession, armed with my university degree under the Reagan admin. Long story short, because of my choice of profession (teaching) I could hardly make ends meet while my significant other, armed with a degree in finance averaged 1000.00 dollars an hour in his construction business. It boils down to choices. The current administration has done everything posible and more to break the back of the middle class. What are you willing to do about it?

Anonymous said...

possible -opps

Anonymous said...

In reply to another anon 12:31; you know what they say about assuming things…
Sorry to let you down, I should have included that I was disabled in a non union shop. My disability limits my ability to do work and because of repeated surgeries, partially to keep up with repairs to a badly preformed early surgery. There are gaps in my work record as I learned to walk again and then try to secure a new job because there are really no labor laws that say an employer has to keep your job open, if you have an extended illness or recovery.
I had achieved an AA in Music before the initial injury and an AS in Math after it while working full time. I studied Computer Science with Mathematics and took courses in Electrical Engineering, achieving my BS at a fine SUNY school while working as well. When I graduated I was 35 years old, the second in my family with a college degree. I have gone on to work in an Internet broadcast start up that was brought down in 2001 by uncertain financial times. I went on to work at Cornell University in the Nuclear Physics department for a research project, which grew out of the Manhattan Project research. When the project wound down and funding dried up under GW Bush, I became involved at Cornell, through my experience and skills, with the implementation of a federal government requested Homeland Security plan. When the promised supplemental grant funding from Department of Homeland Security for that program never arrived, the program went belly up as actively funded and is now done on a “voluntary basis” if each department has the staff and time.
I agree Social Security is broken. I have had to apply for it many times; my disability has kept me from working more than two years multiple times. Each time I applied, even though I met all the requirements for the assistance, I was denied on the first application and found a job before my appeal was taken up. If you have been through the process, you may understand. Each application had no errors, but because of the administration of the laws, the bunker attitude that everyone who applies is a fraud I was humiliated and delayed at every opportunity. The culture, not of the workers, but the administration rewards workers for not helping a valid process, and rewards hindering all applications. I could go on.
If you mean by privatization, to bring a CEO mentality to federal administration, I laugh in your face. After Nixon’s scandalous term, Reagan’s deficits and reduction of labor protections, Bush 1’s horrible follow-up, Clinton’s disappointing dishonesty, and then the seeming planned failures of a gang of CEO styled Federalist Society crooks and liars. They’ve brought large scale “privatization” to our current government administration; this code word of fascism has been thoroughly discredited and should be abandoned. It’s more like “profiteering”. You know Eisenhower had a term for it and warned us.
Privatization of essential government services, the administration of public lands and properties should be dissuaded and left up to the government where there is oversight guaranteed by the Constitution. Privatization is just a cover word for corporate raider types to do their “magic” looting of the nation under cover of darkness out of reach of the purview of Congress. GW has thoroughly proved this model false. People with contempt for government and believe in it’s privatization are served by regular government’s failure and should not be in charge, as their failure in governance somehow proves their relevance. Failure is success as it confirms their core ideas and beliefs to “the base”.
When the sunshine finally gets to all the nooks and crannies and real government reform emerges, the people are finally served. Privatization puts these functions out of the purview of the Congress and into the black hole of “intellectual property” and protected private business secrets.
With regard to your statistics on Social Security, indeed the black man in America dies youngest. You totally sidestep the underlying social cause of their early demise. This is a point you want to obscure. You are using this as an opportunity to accentuating a divide along racial lines. If there is any future for your privatization, it won’t be served by your race baiting.
And what I am doing is exercising my right of free expression as the First Amendment to the Constitution allows; all for the benefit of the citizens of this country who the government exists to serve.

possible -opps
What's that a government spook?
What am I giving up valuable info to the enemy? Citizens need to be informed.

Anonymous said...

Nothing is needed more than a well-educated population and nothing is inworse shape than our public school system which should provide that resource. And why? Because teachers do not get a salary commensurate with their training and their importance. A college for nurses training ina red state suffered the disgrace of only one third of the graduating class passing the test for the practice of nursing Their excuse is several qualified teachers quit because of the very low salary. The fact that there's a nursing shortage was not incentive enough to educate enough nurses. The values in this country have become skewed and we being screwed.

Anonymous said...

Trained nurses gotta live, too. Here's a little hint into red state support of anything educational. Several years ago I taught school in a red state. The school district got some kind of a windfall and decided to spend it to improve the district. I called my program supervisor and asked if I could replace the 1968 edition dictionaries in my classroom since it was the new millenium. I was told to wait and see or buy the new books out of my own pocket. We in the trenches heard nothing more about the money until the next year. The administration in it's wisdom had decided to use the money to completely remodel the administration building which had already been updated several years before. Not one thought was given to actually using the money for the students! So, skewed values certainly played into that one! In fact, rarely did any money filter down into the schools. Now I think this is an example of the lowering of standards and my view is the Republicans are great supporters of this. Shock-jocks getting exposed for degradation of society is just a start, the ball needs to keep rolling to the top.

Anonymous said...

So this blog is full of whiny teachers and musicians? No wonder you need the democrat's welfare agenda. You know what they say about teachers, "if you can't do anything, teach".

Al, the computer scientist, needs to be looking at the world of open source. There's PLENTY of work for someone that can stay at home, work out of any state (or country), contribute to open source, and make lots of money. You don't know this?? What kind of computer scientist are you? I'm guessing you're one that learned what you needed to get your degree and decided to stop learning. Here's a hint if you want to stay 'skilled' in computer science - "keep learning something new everyday". If you did this, you wouldn't be a whiny out-of-work CS guy.

BTW, privatization does not mean bringing the "CEO mentality" to social security. It means "YOU OWN YOUR OWN SOCIAL SECURITY". Just like your 401k plan (if you work and contribute to your retirement), you get to make decisions on how to invest YOUR MONEY.

What did you really think when you went for that teaching degree? Did you plan on making that first million? I doubt it. If you are teachers, in the NEA, and work for a government school - I have NO SYMPATHY for you - YOU ARE PART OF THE PROBLEM. The NEA and the government indoctrination of our youth is one of the biggest problems with this country.

Did you know that a letter from Stalin once outlined the steps required to bring communism to the democratic world? One of the items on that list was the government indoctrination of youth. Of course, you're all democrats - so you're all for the socialist democratic agenda.

Stop crying about how Bush ruined your life. Look in the mirror and think about the decisions you've made to get where you are today. Its nobody's fault but your own.

Anonymous said...

More HYPOCRITICAL DEMOCRATS!! Global Warming is a SCAM!! If they believe it and preach it, why don't they practice what they preach??

Politicians' Power Bills Spark Debate on Global Warming Integrity
By Fred Lucas Staff Writer
April 16, 2007

( - As Sen. John Kerry promotes his new book on the dangers of global warming, he's been running up an average electric bill of $1,100 a month at his federal-style red-brick townhouse on Louisburg Square in the Beacon Hill area of Boston.

That's according to the Massachusetts Democrat's utility company, NStar, one of many utility companies across the nation whose operators provide information about the average monthly electric bill for any given address.

Other members of Congress who have made a point of speaking out about climate change -- either for or against taking drastic action -- have also run up sizeable power bills.

Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.), chairwoman of the Senate committee on environment and public works, paid a high of $675 a month and a low of $225 a month in 2005 to power her home in Greenbrae, Calif., according to the utility company Pacific Gas and Electric.

Boxer, a proponent of stronger environmental regulation, moved to Oakland last July, but information on her current electric charges couldn't be obtained.

By contrast, global warming skeptic Rep. Joe Barton (R-Texas) -- the ranking minority member of the House energy and commerce committee -- appears to be a relatively light electricity consumer.

Barton released his electric bill for February at a March 20 hearing -- he paid $79.47 in total for both his Texas Utilities bill in Ennis, Texas, home and his Dominion Electric bill for his Arlington, Va., apartment.

Anonymous said...

10:33 The correct phrase is "those who can do, those who can't teach." Your education is so poor. And, apparently you've never heard of the natural "Law of Retribution." You will.

Of course, too, your argument makes no sense although there are many in our country today who agree with you. Why learn to do something that might help others; or why even want to help others. Why do anything but make money by perhaps selling drugs, cheating your customers, pimping, or whatever it takes. And of course, cheat or pay no taxes to the government. It would also be a good idea to be born into a wealthy family which I'm sure you have managed to do as clever as you are. I know this last sentence is going to provoke another long diatriabe about how you pulled yourself up by your own bootstraps. Ho hum.

Anonymous said...

Ah-so, the crap slingers are out again.

NEA haters and such. Shock-bloggers, if you will. I'm sure it wasn't a teacher who helped them learn to spell and construct a sentence.

LOSER** is the only term that comes to mind for 10:33 and 10:36

Anonymous said...


Thank You for providing such a wonderful example of how to construct a sentence.

"NEA haters and such."

I'm guessing that you are one of the 'underpaid' teachers on this blog?

Anonymous said...

In 1994, the Florida Department of Education investigators were alerted by local officials that a student had been coaxed by a teacher into a sexual relationship, including oral and anal sex. When confronted with the evidence, the teacher resigned. But he insisted on keeping his teacher's license so that he could work in a classroom somewhere else. ''Naturally, we didn't think it was a good idea to have this guy near kids,'' the investigator who handled the case says. So the FDOE pushed to have his license permanently revoked. But the local NEA affiliate supported the teacher. An administrative-law court finally ruled that he should lose his certification permanently, but it had taken more than two years and tens of thousands of dollars in legal and administrative costs to reach that point.

Anonymous said...

In 1989, police officers in the same Florida county (as in the above post) had caught a female teacher and one of her students naked in a car near a public park. In this case too the FDOE pushed to take away the teacher's license. But the local NEA affiliate argued that she should be allowed to teach again. The FDOE prevailed, but it took more than three years and close to $100,000.

Anonymous said...

In 1996 school administrators in San Francisco discovered that a teacher was placing her 6-year-old students in a trash can, closing the lid, and kicking the can. She was finally suspended when a fellow teacher overheard her threatening to cut off a child's private parts with a pair of scissors. Thanks to heavy resistance from the local affiliate of the NEA, pursuing her dismissal cost the district more than $100,000, and the woman later got a teaching job elsewhere.

Anonymous said...

10:36; 10:38: 10:39 Welcome to the real world. There is corruption in every profession and community in our country. Teachers, policemen, governors, Presidents and their administration, construction companies et al. Doctors who malpractice and doctors who are drug addicts are are allowed to keep their licenses and then practice in other states. Not that anyone cares, but one wonders what is behind your obsessive hatred of teachers, Did one flunk you on your mid-term? No -- you were probably home-schooled and were jealous of those lucky enough to go to a real school and didn't have to stay home to help their mother with chores.

Anonymous said...

oh, so if there is corruption in every profession/community, what's YOUR obsession with the Catholic Church?

Regarding the NEA:

What would you expect for a profession that fights accountability with its every breath? Chemical engineer, accountant, Registered nurse ... all of these people must be accountable for what they do. If they don't do their job well, it's off to the classified. Teachers? Can you spell tenure? Every year the NEA meets to discuss and implement new ways and ideas to make sure that teachers are not held accountable for their successes or failures in the classroom.

A few more points to make about the teaching profession. Studies have shown that generally speaking the college freshman who decide to pursue a degree in education come from the bottom of their entering class. By this I mean that their SAT scores are at the bottom compared to the SAT scores for other entering freshmen. Likewise, college graduates who opt for a master's degree in education generally score at the bottom of their class in the GRE, the Graduate Record Exam, the SAT-like test that goes a long way to deciding who does and who does not get into graduate school.

Bottom line? We have the bottom of the entering college freshman class .. and the bottom of the entering graduate school class out there teaching our children. Then they gripe about low salaries. They write comments on report cards like "Johnny are learning to read real good." and expect to be earning the big bucks.

Oh ... and don't forget that extended summer vacation.

Anonymous said...

6:36 (Who mentioned the Catholic Church?) (How did you get so far off the subject of Andy's article?)

I am going to keep this very simple.

Even the Presdient and his men are not being held accountable. Why do you say all professions are held accountable except teachers?

Doctors are not held accountable. They take their license and go to another state to malpractice.

Higher salaries would mean better teachers.

Teachers in many states are not paid for summer months.

The teacher who wrote "Johnny are ... " probably was teaching in a room with a leaking roof, no supplies to use in teaching and trying to occupy the ten children or more who had no desks or chairs, while at the same time she was trying to finish one of the countless documents required by the state and administration.

Anonymous said...

You are not very realistic, are you ?

Anonymous said...


Alec Baldwin's Threatening Message to Daughter

Posted Apr 19th 2007 2:57PM by TMZ Staff
Filed under: Celebrity Justice, Celebrity Feuds

An enraged Alec Baldwin unleashed a volcanic tirade of threats and insults on his 11-year-old daughter, Ireland, calling her a "thoughtless little pig," and bashing her mother Kim Basinger -- and TMZ has obtained the whole thing unfiltered and raw. And we've learned, a family law judge was so alarmed after hearing the tape, she has temporarily barred Baldwin from having any contact with his child.

After Ireland failed to answer her father's scheduled morning phone call from New York on April 11, Alec went berserk on her voice mail, saying "Once again, I have made an ass of myself trying to get to a phone," adding, "you have insulted me for the last time."

Switching his train of thought, Baldwin then exercised his incredible parenting skills and took a shot at his ex-wife, declaring, "I don't give a damn that you're 12-years-old or 11-years-old, or a child, or that your mother is a thoughtless pain in the ass who doesn't care about what you do." The irate Baldwin went on to say, "You've made me feel like s**t" and threatened to "straighten your ass out."

"This crap you pull on me with this goddamn phone situation that you would never dream of doing to your mother," screamed Baldwin, "and you do it to me constantly over and over again."

Before hanging up, Baldwin warned the child, "You better be ready Friday the 20th to meet with me." That's tomorrow.

We've learned that on Wednesday, Los Angeles County Superior Court commissioner Maren Nelson heard the tape and temporarily suspended Baldwin's visitation rights. A hearing is set for May 4, where the judge could permanently deny Baldwin visitation or contact with Ireland.

Calls to Basinger's attorneys, celebrity lawyers Neal Hersh and Judy Bogen, were not returned.

Baldwin's lawyer, Vicki Greene, told TMZ, "Whatever happened yesterday was sealed and confidential. What you're telling me you've got you shouldn't have."

Anonymous said...

Ostroy, please! We need a new subject because the GOPbots are eating themselves alive with their hatred!

Wait...forget about what was just said.

Anonymous said...

Consider the Duke case and the Imus controversy. Now consider why this story was never covered by the major news organizations. Rape and torture? They would have jumped on this story had the victims been black.