Monday, October 31, 2005
Deduct Your Debt
On Friday I was talking to someone about the home mortgage deduction. She was all for it claiming it reduced poverty. I claimed it encouraged unwelcome debt. In Sunday's paper, syndicated columnist Scott Burns, in answering a question from a young couple about whether to pay down their house or invest their savings noted, "Many financial planners argue that you should be slow to pay down the home-loan debt because its net cost is zero when tax benefits are considered..." So there you go, the home mortgage deduction encourages us to go even deeper into debt. There's a reason there's so much debt in the United States--the system encourages it.
Friday, October 28, 2005
Create Your Own Scooter/Plame Pun Headline Here
I haven't commented much on the Fitzgerald investigation because a) in the grand scheme of things I wasn't sure it was a particularly important story; b) I'm not a very big fan of special prosecutors and independent counsels which by their very nature are prone to excess; and c) I think far too much information is classified and so I'm not as likely as others to get upset about leaks. Plus, I didn't want to add to the wild speculation (much of which has so far turned out to be wrong in light of today's indictment) rampant the last two years. Speculation continues unabated, of course, even after the indictment has been issued and even by those
who have been proven wrong repeatedly in their speculations.
All this being said, Fitzgerald's came across very well in the press conference. He depicts Libby as reckless in lying to the FBI and grand jury and if the charges are true ole Scooter deserves punishment. Of course, every story has two side and we haven't heard Libby's yet, but I'd hate to be the one telling it.
A fair question to be asked if the charges are true is why Libby so recklessly lied? Those who are convinced the Bush Administration is the equivalent of Lex Luther--pure malevolent evil--believe it is because he is covering up some much larger crime and conspiracy, undoubtedly about evil intentions to get us into Iraq. Maybe these beliefs are all true and Fitzgerald will bring further indictments. We'll wait and see. Perhaps, however, Mr. Libby is not as smart as everyone likes to think he is. Or, perhaps even more likely, he is very arrogant--much like his boss--and a) didn't think it was a big deal that HE was lying to a grand jury and FBI because HIS work against terrorism was so important and b) assumed he would easily get away with the lies. I remember reading about Dick Cheney's reaction to September 11th and how it really changed him. Remember, Cheney was in the White House on September 11th, a place that was targeted for destruction. He wigged out. He's been wigged out ever since on foreign policy issues. It transformed him from a cautious, precise user of U.S. power abroad into one ready to wield it very broadly. Anything is justified in fighting the "war on terrorism" in his view. Libby is Cheney's right-hand man and from all accounts has the same beliefs. Thus, and this speculation is as good as any, his recklessness in this case
Update: Btw, I still don't think this is a very important story. Iraq, budget deficits, entitlement reform, a bunch of interesting and underreported advances in science...these and countless other stuff are are important stories. This one is not.
Crimes and Misdemeanors
So what did I say at the jam packed public safety meeting the other night? Well, I told how our house had been broken into the day before and how my wife had walked in on the burglar. I noted that the cops, although they responded relatively quickly, had no interest in trying to catch the perpetrator. They did not take finger prints or do anything else which could lead to the arrest of the guy who broke into our house by kicking in our door. They basically gave us a form and told us to work with the insurance company. I noted that until the police, prosecutors and courts take these crimes seriously, this kind of crime will continue to be rampant in our community. I have been the victim of such crimes numerous times and only once did the police even make an effort to track down the criminal. I also noted that I constantly see police on Aurora looking to ticket speeders and noted that perhaps they could re-prioritize their goals. I was not alone in pointing out these problems. Dozens of other citizens told their own stories. The truth is most property crime is committed by a relatively small group of people. The police don't care about catching them and the courts don't put them away for very long on the rare occasions they do catch them. The law enforcement/prosecutorial industrial complex has decided that the current high levels of property crime is a normal and acceptable amount for society. After last night's passionate and standing-room only meeting, perhaps they will realize the public doesn't.
Don't Forget About Mr. T
Yesterday, NPR had a story
about torture in the context of the death of Manadel al-Jamadi. Too often the reporter and interviewees blamed the torture on confusing guidelines given to CIA interrogators. This isn't accurate. It's been pretty clear that George "Mr. T for Torture" Bush and his henchman Rumsfeld are using torture as a policy. But they won't say this out loud to the public. Instead they'll say they do not advocate torture even as their memos and actions say otherwise. Worse, they let low ranking officers be the fall guys for the torture scandal. Of course, nobody seems to care about this. Can we get Fitzgerald on this case?
On my way home Thursday night, I noticed it was the top of the hour so turned on the radio news. Mark Knoller of CBS News was reporting on the Harriet Miers withdrawal. He said the White House was maintaining their stance that she withdrew because of the Senate's request for documents shedding light on Miers's work as White House counsel. As the reporter said this he started laughing. Seriously, he could not report the story with a straight face.
Thursday, October 27, 2005
The Blogging Buffoon
So my wife and I attended the public safety meeting for the Greenwood/Broadview neighborhood that was being held because of the rampant crime that is striking the area. Since we were victims of a crime the day before, attending seemed like the thing to do. City councilmembers, police officials and prosecutors were there. The place was packed with a standing room only crowd and the assistant police chief said it was the largest such meeting he had seen in all his years on the force. Part of the meeting's agenda was to allow citizens to speak for two minutes each. I signed up to speak and when it came to my turn I got up and spoke succinctly and forcefully. As I described the break-in of our house, I got the crowd to gasp. As I explained what was wrong with law enforcement's reaction to this and similar crimes, spontaneous cheers erupted. I had the crowd in the palm of my hand as I finished and walked off the stage--and stepped onto the tape holding the microphone cord down, which stuck to the bottom of my shoe which dragged the microphone wire down with me as I fell off the stage...all of which proves what most already know--I am a buffoon. More later on the substance of the meeting.
Wednesday, October 26, 2005
Our house was broken into last night. Property crimes are pretty darn common in Seattle. There's a reason for this--the police don't even try to catch the perpetrators. I'll explain more in a post later today or tonight--in the meantime I'm nailing plywood over the door the burglar broke.
with "T" standing for "Torture". Bush has finally found a bill he wants to veto. Stepping up a confrontation with the Senate over the treatment of detainees, the White House is insisting that the Central Intelligence Agency be exempted from a proposed ban on abusive treatment of suspected al-Qaida militants and other terrorists.
This is the McCain Amendment and the Bush Administration is threatening to veto any bill that contains it. Cheney personally met with McCain asking for the CIA exemption. Of course, in the next few days and weeks most will focus on Cheney because of the Plame leak investigation but the Bush Administration's consistent use and support of torture is the real scandal.
Godzilla vs. King Kong
I was leaving work the other day walking along the street listening to tunes on my iPod when I saw someone I knew and she saw me. Since I had a bag in one hand and the iPod in the other, I waved to her with my hand holding the iPod. She was in a similar predicament and waved to me with her hand holding her Blackberry. She is a hard charger, very successful business person. I am not. But then that was probably obvious by what we held in our hands.
Tuesday, October 25, 2005
Mother of All Amish
The New Amish, as I like to call them, are folks who don't like new technology or how society works nowadays. They want to live in a world of stopped time. Interestingly, the New Amish are mostly on the Left. A friend recently gave me Mother Jones in the hopes of convincing me of the error of my ways (or at least some of them). I've just started to read the most recent issue but I was struck by the titles and description of the articles in the table of contents:
--Sea Change: Thailand's "sea gypsies" survived the tsunami only to face a greater threat: tourism.
--Who Holds the Clicker?: Doctors and medical-device makers are promoting neural pacemakers as a cure for treatment-resistant depression. Welcome to implant nation.
--Left Alone: On the activist's temptation to retreat from fighting the good fight into living the good life.
And on it goes...I haven't read the articles yet so maybe the descriptions are misleading but they sure give the impression Mother Jones yearns for an agrarian society without the nuisances of business, modern medicine or pleasures. Yes, we should all yearn for the days of small pox, bad communications, back breaking 14-hour days of toil and all the rest. We can wear dark suits and all become The New Amish.
We've Lost Control
Slate has an interesting article
on the end of the DVD. I knew their days were numbered when Comcast's OnDemand took off. According to the article, the only hold up is Walmart. But maverick Mark Cuban is out to slay the retail beast. Check out Mark Cuban's blog sometime
, which has some fascinating info on how media will be delivered in the future (the very near future, today in fact).
Monday, October 24, 2005
A dollar a Day
is not going to add up to much anymore. I was recently sent a comparison of prices from 1963 to 2005:
1963 dollar figure is first, followed by 2005 figure
3-bedroom Home $14,850 $195,000
Average Income $6,249 $43,417
Price of a New Ford $2,504 $28,625
1 Gallon of Gas $.30 $1.95
Bread, 1 pound $.22 $1.12
Milk, 1 gallon $1.04 $2.93
Stamp $.05 $.37
Former Bush the First National Security Advisor Brent Scowcroft lays into the current Bush
Administration's foreign policy in the latest New Yorker. There's nothing really new in the message--Scowcroft has been unhappy with Bush II's foreign policy for years--but he spells it out in more detail. Scowcroft is pretty dead-on in many of his criticisms but Scowcroft's "real politik" foreign policy approach has also been discredited. This part of the New Yorker article about a Scowcroft conversation with Rice is particularly enlightening:They also argued about Iraq. "She says we're going to democratize Iraq, and I said, 'Condi, you're not going to democratize Iraq,' and she said, 'You know, you're just stuck in the old days,' and she comes back to this thing that we've tolerated an autocratic Middle East for fifty years and so on and so forth," he said. Then a barely perceptible note of satisfaction entered his voice, and he said, "But we've had fifty years of peace."
Rice, of course, was naive about how easy it would be to liberalize Iraq. Scowcroft, however, is arrogant in his assumption that his realpolitik policies were responsible for 50 years of peace. Peace? The Iraq-Iran War? The seven days war? Iraq's invasion of Kuwait. The bombing of the USS Cole? The first bombing of the World Trade Center? September 11? The civil war in Lebanon? Scowcroft has a pretty strange definition of peace. It was the propping up of tyrannical regimes which led to September 11. And for those millions suffering under the regimes in the Middle East, they have known little peace over the last 50 years.
Now that doesn't mean invading Iraq was a good idea. In fact, Scowcroft gets it right earlier in the New Yorker article when he says Saddam was containable and the use of diplomatic and other pressure to liberalize the Middle East was the way to go. Of course, when Scowcroft was in power, he never tried to liberalize the Middle East with those tactics he now says we should use. Too bad. Maybe we wouldn't have the current incompetent Bush Administration in power if he had.
Frontlines of Torture
In the midst of a bunch other stuff going on, I missed PBS Frontline's show on the U.S. use of torture
in the so-called war on terror. Fortunately, you can see the whole thing online with a variety of additional info . (I thought you wanted to cut federal funding for PBS?
I do--somebody else would fund Frontline if the government didn't. Besides, who wants money from a bunch of torturers?)
Friday, October 21, 2005
This Old House Inflation
John Mauldin of Bulls Eye Investing explains how the federal government calculates housing into the inflation figure:
The government currently assumes that housing costs are 23.158% of the Consumer Price Index. Prior to 1982, the housing cost numbers were based upon what you actually spent for the house and the related mortgage. After 1982, the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) began to use an imputed number. They now use what is known as "owners' equivalent rent of primary residence" for the housing portion of the CPI. This is based on an economic theory that says that homeowners are essentially leasing the houses from themselves and paying implied rent for that service. In theory, they are trying to figure out what it would cost you to rent your home.
This makes sense to an extent. Just because the overall value of your house has gone up does not what you are paying for that house has gone up. But there are two problems with the current way the federal government calculates housing in inflation. First, it underestimates the increase in property taxes and second, rents went down during the housing boom as vacancy rates went up under counting how much people are actually paying to live in their houses.
More You Already Knew This
Dave Nelson comments on my observation that inflation is rampant in things we need:
If everyone had to pay cash out of pocket for their own education and health care (not health care insurance, health care), and if the mortgage interest deduction were done away with, the prices for those items would come way down.
He has a good point that current government policies skew the education, health care and housing markets. It's a good point but my point, of course, is that government inflation statistics are hooey. I'll post more in a bit on how the government quantifies housing inflation skews the inflation figures. But as long as we're on housing, in addition to the mortgage interest deduction (which Bush's tax reform commission is reportedly looking at eliminating) numerous regulations in the real estate business also distort housing prices. In the name of protecting consumers, a host of regulations have made their way into federal and state law which protect the real estate agent business at the detriment of the consumer. In the information age, real estate agents are less necessary but made more crucial only because of current laws regulating real estate. It's practically now an axiom that when legislatures start working on laws to allegedly protect we the consumer, they are actually producing legislation to protect a favored industry group.
Flawed from the beginning
In an MSNBC article
about the political fallout from the Plame investigation there is this interesting assertion:But the road that led them to this moment is paved with potholes that Bush aides privately concede they could have avoided, and many Republicans are examining the situation for deeper issues to address. From the failed effort to restructure Social Security to the uproar over the Miers nomination to the Supreme Court, Bush's second-term operation has been far more prone to mistakes than his first.
Of course, the very successful first term including starting a risky war in Iraq, spending like maniacs, and sanctioning the use of torture. Hmm, seems like the second term so far is actually going better.
Thursday, October 20, 2005
I've been hearing more and more talk about Syria being next in the Bush Administration's gun sights. This week a former diplomat said that this would happen relatively soon, though this would not necessarily come in the form of a U.S. invasion of Syria. And after hearing this I see Rice is talking tough on Syria
. Stay tuned.
Wednesday, October 19, 2005
With the revelation that Harriet Miers is against abortion and would like to see a Constitutional Amendment to ban it, there goes any support she might have had from the left. The non-evangelical, non-Bush-boot-licking right will presumably still be against her. My guess is her nomination is now doomed. Now begins the search for the half-Jewish Supreme Court nominee. Our time has come.
Jacob Weisberg in Slate
gets the Valerie Plame story almost exactly right. Special prosecutors and independent counsels are a dangerous tool that almost always miss the mark and cause unforeseen damage. Given enough time, a special prosecutor would bring charges against Moses for destroying the 11th Commandment. Liberals (and conservatives) should not be keen on the use of special prosecutors. But meanwhile, the left blogosphere is almost completely focused on Fitzgerald's questing in the Valerie Plame case. I'd hate for us to concentrate on real issues like Iraq, budget problems, potential epidemics and the rest.
Monday, October 17, 2005
Purple Waves of Majesty
With the apparent passage of the Iraqi Constitution, but apparently with scant Sunni support, the question is what next? The hope, of course, is that the Sunnis will participate in the parliamentary elections in December, giving them a real stake in representational government and putting a stake in the insurgency. The worry is that Sunnis will be split from Shiite even more increasing the risk of civil war. The coming days and weeks will be fascinating and crucial. Of course, all of what people like to call "official Washington" will be riveted to the basically unimportant Valerie Plame story. I hereby declare myself "Unofficial Washington." Here in the unofficial capital we are working to place a half-Jewish Supreme Court nominee and will work to make sure all our scandals are of a sexual nature.
I Found Neverland
We watched Finding Neverland and I was surprised at how good it was. I remember reading that Johnny Depp was great in it--and he was--but I gathered the movie itself was not suppose to be so good. In fact, it is fantastic. The acting is great. After the first few moments you forget it is Johnny Depp and it is merely James Barrie on the screen, creator of Peter Pan. Kate Winslet and the actor who plays the young boy, Peter, are also excellent. But the story is also good. As in any good movie, events that happen earlier in the film, have meaning or consequence later. At the beginning, the film claims it is "based on true events." I know nothing of the writer of Peter Pan, nor how he was inspired to write it. But if it didn't happen the way it is depicted in Finding Neverland, it should have.
Friday, October 14, 2005
You Already Knew This
If you're a regular reader here you already knew inflation is a big problem, especially for items you need--shelter, health care, education, fuel. So Msnbc's story
on rampant inflation is unsurprising. Nor is the government's continued pretense that "core inflation" is under control at .1% increase.
I'm still down with the Avian Flu, er, a cold, and now crunched at work so not much posting tonight but keep an eye on Iraq today--that's where the action is despite the many other stories going on.
Update: The Avian Flu is, of course, the other big story out there amongst the news flotsam and jetsam presented by the media outlets. Unfortunately, most of the news peddled by the news brokers is not all that important.
Thursday, October 13, 2005
Theocrats at Home
"People are interested to know why I picked Harriet Miers," Bush told reporters at the White House. "They want to know Harriet Miers' background. They want to know as much as they possibly can before they form opinions. And part of Harriet Miers' life is her religion."
I want to assure readers right now: when I'm elected president I will only nominate half-Jewish candidates for the Supreme Court.
The drunken spending spree of Reverend LBJ, or as many people call him, George W. Bush, has been quantified by the conservative Heritage Foundation
. The good news is that in fiscal year 2005 (which ended on September 30th), the $317 billion budget deficit represents only 2.6% of GDP. The public-debt-to-GDP ratio stands at 38% which is lower than any level of the last 15 years. Of course, the reason this is so is because tax revenues increased significantly in FY05 (by 15%), GDP growth has been resilient and payment on the ever larger debt has decreased due to low interest rates.
However, the long-term structural imbalances in the budget still remain as does the prolific spending of the Bush Administration. Spending increased by 8% in 2005 and is up 33% since 2001. Defense and so-called 9/11 associated spending accounts for 45% of the spending increases. All the rest of the spending increases--some $164 billion worth--are from non-defense, non-9/11 security spending. In fact, this type of spending has gone up far more under Bush than it did under Clinton. During the Bush Administration, federal spending has gone up 100% for education, 71% for community and regional development, 86% for housing and commerce and 16% for farm subsidies, to name just a few categories.
Defense and discretionary domestic spending are of concern enough but the looming increases in entitlement spending will really give fiscal conservatives the willies (and if we only had Willy Clinton in office rather than George W., it's likely the budget problems wouldn't be so bad--although other problems probably would be). Entitlements account for nearly 60% of all spending and the Heritage Foundation report says a "record 10.8% of GDP." Wait, it gets worse! Entitlement spending--including Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid--will nearly double over the next ten years
It's funny how after the Democrats and media successfully killed Bush's Social Security reform efforts, the issue dropped off the radar screen, although the problem remains, blipping brighter and brighter with each passing day. But this president does not care about fiscal prudence. He only has his religious beliefs and those are unlikely to compel him to put our fiscal house in order. At the same time, the Democrats and media don't particularly care about budget deficits and public debt either despite their constant blandishments about "the children." Of course, it's the children who will be paying off the debts we "adults" are ringing up today.
Wednesday, October 12, 2005
Less Than a Week
Looks like there's good news
on the Iraqi Constitution. After some additional changes, some Sunnis will apparently support the document. The coming vote should be fascinating. Of course, none of this will probably have an impact on the insurgents short term. But, perhaps it signals some hope for mid or long term.
Tuesday, October 11, 2005
Nervous about Serenity
The movie Serenity is doing badly at the box office, making only $5 million in its second weekend. I raved about this movie and wrote about its innovative marketing campaign using blogs to help promote the film. I have read many of the blog reviews which were almost universally positive. However, this obviously shows the limited influence of blogs since the thumbs up reviews did not transform the movie into a blockbuster. Perhaps Serenity would have done even worse at the box office without the blog marketing campaign but the effort certainly didn't accomplish the results the studio was hoping for. More alarming to me is what the box office failure of Serenity says about the American movie-going public. Here was a great movie but not an art house one. It has the action audiences apparently want but is also intelligent with three-dimensional characters. But, it is not popular. I could understand if it was some navel gazing art house flick that it would not draw in audiences but it's the kind of movie one would assume would be popular. What the movie doesn't have is any recognizable stars. Is this the reason the flick didn't draw them in? Why our fascination with movie stars? Does anyone really want to see Tom Cruise overact again? I don't get it.
More on Torture
Due to traveling and sickness, I've been remiss in following up on torture stories. Fortunately, Andrew Sullivan, as always, is on top of it
. Contact your U.S. Representative and urge them to pass the McCain bill that was approved in the Senate last week.
Monday, October 10, 2005
In the middle of a horrible head cold, no one wants to pick up the paper in the morning and see how many people are going to die from the dreaded bird flu in the coming year(s). Of course, I don't think I have the avian flu...er, I'm pretty sure I don't.
In one week, Iraqis vote on the proposed Constitution. The consensus seems to be if the Constitution is voted down--which requires a two-thirds majority against in at least three of the 19 provinces--chaos ensues. This could be but doesn't necessarily have to be so. But that so much is riding on this vote shows how risky the Bush policy of going into Iraq was. That's water under the bridge, of course. The question is what do we do after the vote? Some on the left are saying it is time for the U.S. to gradually reduce forces because our presence there is counterproductive. They assert we need to lay down clear markers for reduction of troops. Kevin Drum
and others are arguing this position. They are making some interesting arguments rather than the Neanderthal ones of the far left who just scream "Out of Iraq" at make-me-feel-better presentations. I expect, no matter what happens in the constitution vote, the intelligent debate over Iraq is about to heat up and positions across the board may start to shift.
Thursday, October 06, 2005
I'm out of town for a couple days so blogging may be light--or it may not. Guess we'll have to wait and see.
Wednesday, October 05, 2005
The Military is in Charge?
The most startling part of the Weekly Standard article is this: "In opposing the legislation, the Pentagon argues that it is not Congress's place to be arbiter of the rules for treatment of detainees, insisting that it alone should wield that power..." So it has come to this in the so-called "War on Terror"? We have given up democracy for military control of policy? Count me in on the rebellion.
The Washington Monthly gets it exactly right
on torture and the McCain bill:It's telling that George Bush, the first president in over a century who hasn't vetoed a single bill, has finally threatened a veto over this. Despite the events of Abu Ghraib, Bagram, the 82nd Airborne, and over a dozen separate reports detailing gruesome abuses of captives around the world, the one thing that Bush thinks is worth his veto pen is a set of clear guidelines telling our own military Â and the rest of the world Â that America believes in treating prisoners decently.
The article quotes extensively from an editorial in the Weekly Standard which is in favor of the McCain bill. It's heartening that some conservatives are beginning to come out against the torture policies of the Bush Administration. In fact, Bush seems to be losing people of every stripe. Liberals, of course, never boarded the drunken Bush cruise but lots of fiscal conservatives have taken their dingy and rowed off into the sunset. Now, social conservatives, upset over the nomination of Harriet Mierrs, have abandoned ship also. The only ones left are apparently true Bush believers, more suited to blindly rooting for a sports team than makinjudgmentsts on public policy.
They're Not Making You Safer
The shortage of Arabic-speakers in the military is made worse because Arabic-speaking gays are being discharged
. The Christian Right is not only trying to take our rights away, they're making us less safe.
Tuesday, October 04, 2005
I've been reading up on the great movie Serenity and discovered there are all sorts of controversies surrounding the film as well interesting interpretations on the meaning of the flick. But, I won't bore you with all those. Instead, I'll point you to this Chinese curse word web site. The Chinese are better swearers than we are (F*** eight generations of your ancestors--Wo cao ni ba bei zi zu zong). If you haven't seen Serenity you have no idea why I'm directing you to a Chinese swear word web site. In which case, get yourself to the film this week or weekend you "Chun zi."
Where's the Singularity?
I was at a lunch on Monday where someone from the Paul Allen Institute for Brain Science
spoke. One of the Institute's projects is creating an "atlas" of a mouse's brain and providing the information on the web for other researchers to use. I asked the speaker about Singularity and whether any researchers were using the Institute's information towards the merging of mind and machine. Remarkably, the speaker did not even know what singularity is. If you don't, read this
, and this
. It may be fanciful but it's interesting to ponder.
More and more people are realizing that inflation is rearing its ugly head, at least in certain parts of the economy. This Slate article
points out the huge increases we'll see in heating our homes this winter. The problem is those parts of the economy are the necessary parts. As I've pointed out before, we have deflation in things we don't need--DVD players, for example--and inflation in the necessities of life--shelter, health care, fuel, and increasingly food. The Slate article says, "For the 2005-06 heating season, "residential per-household expenditures" will rise by 71 percent for natural gas in the Midwest, 31 percent for heating oil in the Northeast, and 40 percent for propane in the Midwest." Perhaps global warming is our only hope. In order to save money on heating our ever growing McMansions, we need to drive our SUVs even more! Or, uh, maybe not.
Monday, October 03, 2005
I saw Serenity on Sunday. It's one of the best movies of the year. I say this, of course, as someone who watched all the Firefly episodes, the TV show on which the movie is based. I'm curious what people, who have not watched the TV show, think. As I mentioned in an earlier post, TV shows are novels, allowing for the development of character. If you watched Firefly, and became invested in the characters, then Serenity will have a celestial impact on you. In fact, I can't remember the last time I was as emotionally effected by a movie as by Serenity. Joss Wheden's particular genius is to draw distinctive, complicated characters that the viewer cares about. He's good with plot and dialogue, of course, but in Wheden's hands these are really tools to chisel individuals we want to see and learn more about. See the movie, but perhaps rent the DVD of the show first.
Sunday, October 02, 2005
Supporting Torture Whistle Blower
, who has been on the Bush torture story like hair on a hippy (a term I first heard at a dinner on Saturday night and steal here for no particular reason) has an email to send support for Captain Ian Fishback. The Captain is one of the sources for the Human Rights Watch report I posted on a few days ago. You can email your support to SupportFishback@aol.com