One Reporter's Opinion

Proud sponsor of The Partnership for an Idiot-Free America. Andy's random observations -- a potluck of politics, a mix of music musings, and whatever else transcends the transom. (Unless otherwise specified, all pictures are copyright of this blogger. Some rights reserved, subject to the terms and conditions specified under the Creative Commons license.)

Saturday, June 18, 2005

SKB Placeholder

I don't know if I'm getting hits thanks to the flap about the coerced outing of South Knox Bubba, but I thought that I would leave this space as an accomodation to Brian Conley, Ellen Mallernee, Molly Kincaid, or anyone else interested in taking any personal stuff with me where it belongs: to me. I am in SKB's blogroll and I do leave my blog in my signature over there, so logically, maybe someone will saunter over here and decide to leave a comment.

I'll offer a weak apology here: I'm sorry if you were offended by my (admittedly pointed) remarks. Seems like I hit a nerve, otherwise you wouldn't worry about being called "skeeze" or "skanks" or "Buffys" or "overindulged" or whatever it was that I said. Seems hardly to matter now.

All this aside, your depth of offense gives you no right to conduct a campaign to destroy someone's career, or to shut them up, or to embarrass them -- especially since your primary beef, Brian, was with the things that I SAID which Bubba let stand. Heck, that'd be like me signing off on an expense report where I knew that my employees were on assignment and driving drunk at the time. I can only assume what your staffers' thoughts on the matter are, since you seem bound and determined to shield them from criticism. Maybe I was overly frank with my thoughts on the quality of that article, but I took some offense of my own. Apparently you're the only one in the universe that has the right to act on that, however.

If you're considering widening your campaign of personal destruction, don't bother. The details of my life are shamefully boring by Knoxville standards, as it were. I'm a photographer by hobby and a sales engineer by trade. I brew my own beer. That's about the most edgy thing I'm into these days.

Thankfully, while I'm not always proud of the things I've said, I have no regrets to follow me through this debacle. While I may have come off like a reactionary, bloviating asshole, at least I've spared myself the indignity of looking like a world-class borderline personality case.

Friday, June 17, 2005

Friday Fledgling Blogging

Very juvenile (2-day fledgling) cardinal.



My wife had noticed this bird coming of age in the nandina bushes around the house. After we had a scare with the bluebirds, we were happy to find this guy flitting around the parking lot. Not one bit afraid of us... this shot taken from about 3' with a Nikon 24-120VR.

Comparison shot for scale purposes:



That's a pickup truck tire below, just to give you some idea of how little this creature is.

Thursday, June 16, 2005

One! One Public TV Network! Tw... Wait, There's Only One.

I've been following a number of developments leading up to the announcement that the Bush Administration is cutting funding to the Corporation for Public Broadcasting by 25% this year. For all of their vitriol aimed at the unabashed liberalism of Bill Moyers, and their frustration with the actual reporting happening on Frontline and the McNeill News Hour, I think can pinpoint the real target of the Republican campaign to cripple public television:

Sesame Street.

Now, as I think about this -- what other non-profit company has been as committed and as successful as the Children's Television Workshop in promoting child social, emotional and educational development? What other concern addresses children's motivation and interest in the arts, or pre-school literacy, and introduces concepts in math and science as well as CTW? All noble aspirations, right? So why take them on? What makes them a target?

Well, in order to send a message to "liberal" news organizations, that's why. To wreak revenge on the perceived political enemies of the state. And in order to bust a cap in Bill Moyers absent butt, they're willing to scrap the network which has brought real value and continues to demonstrate real value to our society. To our CHILDREN. These family values hypocrites seek to destroy the medium which has taught three generations of children the honest community values brought to you by Elmo, the letter Q, and the number 8.

What am I talking about?

Self-esteem. Sharing. Co-operation. Tolerance. Pluralism. Imagination. Creativity. Love. Innocence. Friendship. Communication. Multiculturalism. Integrity. Honesty. Coping with loss (remember when Mr. Hooper died and someone had to explain that to Big Bird?).

Sesame Street communicates all of these things on a daily basis to millions of children here and around the world, and all without a single mention of GOD or THE BIBLE or JESUS.

Sesame Street represents a secular culture that teaches all of the things that you're supposed to learn in Sunday School, and all without indoctrination in the Scriptures or instilling fear or shame in our children as a means to control them throughout their lives.

You know that has to scare the living crap out of the prime Republican movers in the wingnut Christian community.

Think I'm off base? Who lost their mortal cool about the purported sexual proclivity of the Teletubbies? Jerry Falwell. Who had public conniption fits about the perceived flamboyance of a cartoon sponge? James Dobson. You think for a second that they really have any love for Elmo, Grover, or Kermit? I'm sure they've also expressed grave reservations about the sinful nature of the cohabitation of Bert and Ernie.

The coordinated Republican campaign for "fairness and balance" in media is so reckless and so shameless that they're willing to kick Wishbone, Reading Rainbow, The Electric Company, ZOOM, and Clifford The Big Red Dog to the curb. But I don't believe in coincidences. If this administration is willing to lie about terrorism in order to establish control over oil, then it's not so much of a stretch to believe that they'll carp about Bill Moyers when what they really want to do is take Big Bird away from your children.

Oscar may be a Grouch, but he's a paragon of virtue compared to these power-mad, lying schmucks running our country and dominating our discourse.

This madness must stop.

Support your local public broadcasters. In Nashville, WPLN 90.3 FM/1410 AM on the radio; WNPT on UHF & cable.