Sunday, May 21, 2006

Sunday Thread

The News-Leader was all over the power plant issue in this week's Sunday edition. Environmentalists argue against a new coal-fired plant; CU argues in favor of building the thing. Frankly, I don't know enough about this issue to say much, but it seems that, given the reality of global warming and the cost of generating power, that any viable way to create cleaner, sustainable power should be a priority.

Sara Overstreet told us of a handicapped woman who can no longer ride her motorized wheelchair to an OACAC Head Start center due to the closure of the Broadway Avenue railroad crossing. I know I sound completely insensitive, but it's yet another in a series of sad, lightly truth-tinted stories from Overstreet.

Last year, she wrote of a special needs adolescent boy who had been repeatedly turned down by Big Brothers & Big Sisters, when all he sought was a little kindness and love. I remember that kid, even though I never had him in class. I don't know what specifically was wrong with him, but I do know that he did sometimes erupt in violent outburst when things didn't go his way.

I remember seeing the security guard walking toward me with a huge bruise on his arm, vividly outlined by rows of teeth marks and blood. I remember seeing fear in the eyes of children in the hall and the image of that boy being handcuffed and escorted to the patrol car by two of SPD finest. But it's a sad story nonetheless.

And then there was the recent Overstreet story about the special education teacher who cruelly forced her handicapped student to crawl up the steps of the school building. She featured a picture of the family with that one. Given the Big Brother story, I'm wondering how well this one was researched.

Anyway . . . on with the Sunday news shows. I'm finding it harder and harder to listen to the likes of Condi Rice and Alberto Gonzalez. Tim Russert just isn't a whiz-bang interviewer, is he? Gonzalez, who has already proven he can put on a plastic face and say absolutely nothing for hours at a time, was vintage.

You only need partial quotes from Gonzalez to know when it's a waste of time to go on listening. First, he stated that "we don't engage in surveillance . . without a court order", which is a bold-faced lie as everybody knows. Once the big lie is presented, what can follow?

"We want to promote . . . first amendment rights." Of course you do. When pressed by George Stephanopoulos to explain events that would contradict that statement, Gonzalez replied with the tried and true Nixonian mantra . . . "We are engaged in an investigation . . . I'm not going to talk about specific cases."

More from the Bush administration Theater of the Absurd. An investigation by the Justice Department into NSA spying practices was halted this week. The Bush administration has, incredible as it may seem, denied itself access to it's own information.

From the Washington Post:

"The government has abruptly ended an inquiry into the warrantless eavesdropping program because the National Security Agency refused to grant Justice Department lawyers the necessary security clearance to probe the matter.

The Justice Department's Office of Professional Responsibility, or OPR, sent a fax to Rep. Maurice Hinchey, D-N.Y., on Wednesday saying they were closing their inquiry because without clearance their lawyers cannot examine Justice lawyers' role in the program."

If one were to personify American governance at this moment in time, he would be an incredibly rich, well-armed, drug-addicted mental patient who dredges up imaginary enemies to feed his fevered self-consumption. The drug is power, the enemies are everywhere.

On the positive side, it was great to hear John Edwards expanding the collective orifices of Cheney, Bush, et al. It seems there are a few Democrats whose testicles are beginning to descend after a cold winter of Republican malfeasance. If Edwards can stay real, he will be a strong presidential candidate.

Like most democrats, Edwards isn't backing any talk of impeaching Bush. Isn't it interesting that the Clinton impeachment actually served the Republicans very well after a passage of time. Because after that debacle, nobody has the stomach for years of investigation and litigation, even though the charges are much worse than those that would have come against Nixon, as Edwards pointed out in his interview.


gayrevi said...

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Try it! You'll like it!

RSmith said...

Did you see where the Bissett child abuse story that Overstreet exploited for her column ended up with the teacher being exonerated. DSS found the complaints unsubstantiated. Sara owes that teacher a profound apology.

RSmith said...

Whoa, poor John. We didn't know him well. Nor did he know himself very well, apparently.

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