Wednesday, September 28, 2005

Well, the new television season began last week and I've checked out a few of the new programs.

Of the three science fiction "thrillers" that started this season, I pick "Surface" and "Theshold" as the best.
"Invasion" is too slow and plodding; too laid back and low-tech, and poorly structured. In short, no thrills. "Surface, however, has pizzaz and spook-factor, and "Threshold" definitely has taken the lead from the pack. It's got the best plot-lines, the best drama and the best gritty scariness going for it.
If I were to bet which one would be picked up for next season it would be "Threshold."
Staples like "ER" and "CSI Miami," Law & Order," and Desperate Housewives" all turned in their usual strong performances and all hold the promise of entertaining hours to come for fans.
"Boston Legal" was one I was looking forward to but, sadly, one that failed to meet expectations.
I haven't seen "Alias" or "24" yet (I think they haven't started yet) but I expect they'll be reliable, although "Alias" appears to be taking a domestic tack this season, with Sydney pregnant and due to give birth before season's end.
The rest is obscured by ignorance and speculation, as they say.
And now the political winds are blowing adverse omens toward the GOP, and as "Dubya's" fortunes continue to rot and stink up the joint the rest of the party is beginning to feel the heat of backlash building up in the halls of power. DeLay (yea, the rugged asshole we know as the majority leader of the House) was FINALLY indicted for the LEAST of his sins, although I predict that he'll get off without so much as a trial and that the Texas AG will fade in the face of Republican attacks.
It's remarkable how twisted the GOP fan club's - Rush, O'Reilly and such - arguments can get. One day they (with one voice) say that Bush is a conservative scion and light of truth and justice, the next they're saying the media has created a false impression of the president and that's what's bringing down his poll numbers -- and perception of performance -- not his own ineptitude. How long will the conservative talk show audience swallow the swill that Limbaugh and his cronies put forth as truth and insight?
I find it remarkable that no one seems to notice that Limbaugh's lies grow more and more transparent as public opinion of the GOP turns surly, but unruffled and blind, those listeners go forward into the maw of a waiting, hungry beast as Dubya and his cheerleading squad leads them to death and sorrow.Dramtic, strong words, eh? Well, not dramatic or strong enough to convey the reality of this nation's leadership (crooks) and agencies of power (blind), law (corrupt) and reason (insane).We the people will wind up enslaved by corporate greed and ambition if the current agenda continues to unfold without challenge.
But there it is. Believe it or not.
Is Bush a "good" man? I imagine, as much as anyone individual can be, he is. But is he an honest man? A leader? An ethical, informed, thinking man? Not so much.
And yes, I'm not hopeful that the Democrats will rise to the occasion. Why would I imagine that the party of rubber-stampers would assert itself and challenge, with insightful reason, passionate truth and/or honest evaluation, the path our nation has taken this past 5 years? Especially when the Dems have been silent or, at best, flaccid in the face of the roar from the GOP's gas and smoke?
I haven't heard one Democrat offer a concrete plan that contrasts the administration's, and it's disheartening, to say the least.
The GOP controls the House, the Senate, the White House, the courts and the school board, locally and federally. And, predictably, they're making a complete mess of the nation. So what are you gonna do about it?

Saturday, September 03, 2005

What a load of crap the media industry is spewing forth into the minds of an already-muddle-brained public vis a vis oil prices, Hurricane Katrina, racism in New Orleans (and nationwide), and el presidente's misguided leadership.

It's almost laughable, if the world's situation weren't so damned critical at the moment.

The Bushmeister and his crew, as usual, are sending forth their minions to deflect criticism for their ineptitude in responding to the Hurricane Katrina disaster. Now it is true that the Louisiana governor (what a nitwit!) and the mayor of New Orleans (what a drama queen!) also are playing shift-the-blame with their empty rhetoric and thoughtless recriminations toward the administration, but in the big-picture-view of the crisis, the only thing that ought to matter is progress by way of reducing the death, anxiety and suffering that people in the Gulf region are experiencing.

But instead of an organized relief effort, what we're getting is SPIN!

In one interview for CBS television an official with Homeland Security praised the organizational model in Louisiana. He gushed about how courageous the New Orleans mayor was in ordering a mandatory evacuation. He blathered on about how well FEMA's response was handled.

He simply did not address the reality of the situation: Looting, rapists ranging freely on the streets, terror being dished out to survivors with no lawful intervention in sight, etcetera.

And if the Gulf is the source of 20 to 40 percent of the nation's oil refining capabilities, wouldn't it stand to reason that any threat the region ought to have been considered a national emergency from the beginning? And if it's a national emergency, doesn't that mean it falls to the federal government -- not the state -- to manage the disaster?

It appears to me that both federal and state officials are kicking around a lot of blame to deflect criticism and cover their asses -- at the expense of the people who are stranded without food, water or basic comforts.

The whole episode is a disgrace to the people who run the governments.

But what matters is that relief is provided as quickly as possible, and in an organized, carefully managed fashion.

At present, what we have is anarchy, aid workers being blocked by anonymous gunmen from delivering food, water or medical care, mothers losing their children because of ham-handed police officers among the relief workers. It seems like the classic case of the left hand not knowing what the right hand is doing.

Truth is, this disaster is the first one in my lifetime that suggests our world is spinning of its axis and that things are terribly wrong, in the cosmic sense.

I expect the economy will be in the toilet by Christmas 2005 and things will slide downhill further and further for some time to come.

The future, to say the least, is uncertain for everyone.

If terrorist wanted to inflict deep, damaging pain to the psyche of America, now would be the time to strike -- and I don't know if the government is capable of dealing with a major emergency at this point.

The storm pulled up the skirt of the administration and gave us a look at its dirty undies, and frankly the view is ugly and frightening.

The level of incompetancy is mind-boggling! The lack of planning and organization is deeply troubling. The best most federal officials can come up with to appear in control is phrases like "our main job right now is to convey to the American public just how serious this disaster really is." Duh, I think the public gets it, ya know. The news media reported Wednesday that donations to the Red Cross and other relief agencies is pouring in at an unprecedented rate, so that suggests to me that the public gets it.

But, as in Iraq, we see a federal government that is unprepared, short-sighted and unable to respond appropriately or effectively.

Sad, absurd, shocking!