Politics, open government, and safe streets. And the constant incursion of cycling.

Month: October 2006 Page 2 of 4

“Let them lose their majorities and their souls.”

Josh Marshall is usually one of the more circumspect of the influential bloggers on the left. In discussing the latest Republican attack ads, though, he lets go – and catches it perfectly:

Again, let’s be honest with ourselves. Racism is one of the key building blocks of Republican politics in the United States. Don’t look at me with a straight face and tell me you don’t realize that’s true. That doesn’t mean that all Republicans are racists. Far from it. It doesn’t mean that a lot of Republicans don’t wish the stain wasn’t part of their party’s recent political heritage. They do. But racism and race-baiting is the hold card Republicans take into every election. When times are good, guys like Mehlman ‘reach out’ to blacks and Latinos to try to take the edge off their opposition to the Republican officeholders. But when things get rough the card gets played. And pretty much every time.

This isn’t surprising. It’s expected.

[ . . . ]

The point is that as vile as this race-hucksterism is, for my part I welcome the opportunity that Republican desperation provides, to show these guys for who they really are. Scratch the surface of ‘outreach’ Mehlman and he’s a Southern strategy man after all. So, fine, bring it on. Cut away the veil and the mask. Let everyone come out from under their rock and be who they really are.

Let them lose their majorities and their souls.

The whole thing is here.

Interesting: Clear Channel Going Private?

Yesterday, CNBC reported that Clear Channel (the largest radio station group in the US) has been in discussions with a number of private equity firms. Presently, Clear Channel is a publicly traded company, with the Mays family as the largest shareholder. The aim, it is reported, is to get the private equity firms to work with the Mays family to fund a buy-out – which would take Clear Channel private.

Why would that matter to you and me? Well, as much as it seems that Clear Channel is free to do as it likes now with the massive megaphone that is 1200 radio stations (in the US alone), as a private firm, it would have even less of a responsibility to the public for its actions and programming decisions. As a private firm, not accountable to public shareholders or the worries of quarterly earnings, it could afford to take the hit associated with, say, broadcasting stronger political viewpoints . . .

To be clear – there’s nothing inherently nefarious in taking it private (and considering the stock performance, it’s understandable), but should Clear Channel get more interested in being nefarious, being private will make it a whole lot easier. The FCC will have to approve any such transaction, and given all the friends that Clear Channel has made over the years, it sure could be an interesting docket . . .

That Liberal Washington Post

Comes through again.

(Here’s some good local analysis on why Maryland will have a new governor, despite this endorsement.)

Absolutes of Faith: Arrogance, Dogma, Ignorance

(title taken from LondonYank’s wonderful diary at dKos)

Speaking of Social Obscenities

You’re a liar and a bigot, Victoria Cobb.

The other side

This is the sort of thing that usually makes me roll my eyes when people in the US say they’re emmigrating to the UK or somesuch nonsense. I love England, but they’ve got their own set of political and social obscenities.

Cleaning the place up

I cannot wait to get to a point where Dems can concentrate on making sure that folks like Rep. William Jefferson (D-La.)don’t stand a chance in an election. What an embarrassment.

Clarendon Day

I love my neighborhood.

It matters to *all* of us.

Please spread this far and wide.


Atrios says what many of us wondered, after seeing the RNC’s most recent ad featuring Bin Ladin:

The point of terrorism is, as the name suggests, to terrorize. Not simply to kill and destroy, but to frighten the broader population. It puzzles me why the RNC has found common cause with terrorists in their new ad campaign, and it puzzles me more why they want to highlight the fact that over 5 years after 9/11 George Bush has failed to catch the guy responsible.

And Markos puts an even blunter point on it – “Terrorists and the GOP, in common cause.”  And yes, I’ll stand by that.

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