A BUZZFLASH GUEST CONTRIBUTION
by Michael Winship
In this bicentennial year of Abraham Lincoln's birth, I recently was re-reading part of Doris Kearns Goodwin's epic history, "Team of Rivals." Once again, it was stunning to see the number of casualties during the Civil War, the dead and wounded in four years of fighting exponentially outnumbering the American men and women killed and wounded in Iraq and Afghanistan over six and a half years of combat.
On both sides of the Civil War, 618,000 were killed, although some estimate as many as 700,000. In just the three days of the Battle of Gettysburg, July 1863 -- more than 51,000 dead and wounded. Chickamauga, Georgia, 2 days, September 1863, nearly 35,000. Chancellorsville, Virginia, four days, May 1863, more than 30,000. And on and on.
"The war took young, healthy men and rapidly, often instantly, destroyed them with disease or injury," Drew Gilpin Faust notes in her 2008 book "The Republic of Suffering: Death and the American Civil War."
"... Loss became commonplace; death was no longer encountered individually; death's threat, its proximity and its actuality became the most widely shared of the war's experiences." Up until that time, Faust writes, the U.S. Army had neither regular burial details nor grave-registration units. Such duties "seemed always to be an act of improvisation." Often the townspeople in or near a battleground wound up with the task. Many of the enlisted went unidentified, their bodies hastily placed in mass graves for fear of disease.
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I posted the video of Meghan McCain's Maddow interview earlier this week and while she's probably[...]
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I can't tell if Jagdish Baghwati is being coy in his analysis of the union movement or is simply pretty detached from that sphere of inquiry, but in any case, the reason the AFL-CIO is more focused on trade than the SEIU is not because the two have an[...]
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For all my whining about twitter, I did enjoy Ana Marie Cox's live-twittering (tweeting?) of Joe Biden's Amtrak speech today:I'll give this to Joe: He is speaking VERY PASSIONATELY (about Amtrak no less!) to a crowd of a dozen people (and twice that of[...]
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TVNewser reports that “MSNBC producers were asked not to incorporate the Jim Cramer/Jon Stewart interview into their shows today.” By TVNewser’s count, Cramer’s Daily Show interview was only mentioned once on MSNBC today and that was during the White House press conference when a reporter asked for Obama’s reaction. TVNewser explains further:
Gibbs wasn’t sure if the president had, but Gibbs did. “I enjoyed it thoroughly,” the Press Secretary said.
On Cramer’s network, CNBC, the subject has only come up twice today, including when master marketer/CNBC personality Donny Deutsch brought it up briefly around 1pm on “Power Lunch.” “I’m a huge Jon Stewart fan,” said Deutsch, “He does what he does he does his job. But I’m also a huge Jim Cramer fan.” […]
Cramer appeared on his regular “Stop Trading” segment during “Street Signs.” But the Daily Show did not come up.
TVNewser writes that “insiders” say that Cramer “will talk about Stewart tonight on Mad Money (6pmET & 11pmET).”
Welcome to Round One of BuzzFlash's Republican Race to the Bottom. Here's how to play: Vote for the worse of the two contenders on the left. Vote by marking the circle next to the contender you dislike more, and click "Vote." A winner will be declared at midnight tonight. (If you can't see the poll, please upgrade to Internet Explorer 8, or try Firefox)
The winner will advance to the next round of the Sour Sixteen, with a chance to become this year's worst conservative. Click here for more about the Race to the Bottom. Click here to see the full bracket, which you can fill out to play along at home.
Karl "Bush's Brain" Rove
Known as "the Cute One" in the Bush White House boy band, Rove is world renown for masterminding the 2000 and 2004 Bush Presidential campaigns.
When he's not Swift Boating the opposition, Rove likes to spend his time voting in states he's not a real resident of, and dodging subpoenas. He retired from the Bush White House in 2007, and since has been a most valuable player for Fox News and the Wall Street Journal.
John "T-Rex" McCain
With the beat-down of the 2008 season still haunting McCain, all bets are off on the performance of this classic war horse of a player. In fact, he almost didn't make it into the playoffs, but his tenacity in the earmark games last month was undeniable.
There's some speculation of whether this might be McCain's last season, so watch out for more serious showboating from the Arizona senator on the court.Bookmark/Search this post with: buzzflash | delicious | digg | yahoo | technorati Technorati Tags: Other
Rep. Maxine Waters is stepping up her campaign to show she took no inappropriate action on behalf of OneUnited bank.
Waters' office has released to TPM two letters sent by the National Bankers Association (NBA), a trade group for minority-owned banks, to the Treasury Department, in reference to a September 2008 meeting Waters had helped set up between NBA and Treasury. The letters appear to back Waters' contention that the meeting, at which OneUnited's CEO reportedly asked explicitly for bailout money, was not set up exclusively to help OneUnited, but rather on behalf of minority-ownded banks more broadly.
That doesn't contradict anything the New York Times reported, it's worth noting. But it does appear to bolster Waters' claim, made in a statement she put out earlier today, that she wasn't looking out for OneUnited's interests above those of other minority-owned banks. Waters has long been an advocate in Congress for minority-owned banks.
Waters also released a 2007 document showing that she disclosed her ties to OneUnited -- her husband had previously served on the board, and owned stock -- before questioning witnesses at a House hearing on minority-owned banks.
It seems clear that Waters should have disclosed those ties again when she set up the 200 meeting. But it also appears that that meeting, which Waters has said she didn't attend, was arranged on behalf of minority banks broadly, not as a way to benefit OneUnited.
Given the general level of greed and hypocrisy we've seen in regard to the bailout, this looks at this point like a minor misstep.
Thomas Clarke, who has been CEO of financial news website The Street has announced his departure ?effective immediately.? Clarke?s abrupt departure comes less than a day after The Daily Show aired tape of The Street?s co-founder, Jim Cramer, explaining[...]
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More GOP in-fighting and Jed has compiled the clips. When you've lost the leader of the party, Rush Limbaugh, and the main Republican media outlet, FOX NEWS, you're in trouble:
Glenn Beck really is well and truly insane. And that he has a big microphone to keep the anger and hate whipped up is truly fucking frightening. To paraphrase my friend Steve, when Bill O'Reilly is the voice of reason, you know you've fallen through the looking glass.
Conservatives have always been prone to heaping all manner of abuse on logic and reason in their never-ending quest to blame every conceivable social ill or tragic event on liberals and our philosophy of life. Who can forget the rush by television preachers Falwell and Robertson and their frenetic hate fest of blame wherein "abortionists, feminists, gays and lesbians" were the reason for the terrorist attacks of September 11. Or Newt Gingrich blaming liberals and "situation ethics" for the Virginia Tech shooting rampage? True right-wingnut-watchers spotted that as a retread of that time he shouted J'accuse!!! after the Columbine massacre. Remember how he claimed "liberal elitism" was the reason for the tragedy.
It isn't like the right wingnuts don't have a scary propensity for violence, either. Oklahoma City was carried out by right wing militia nut jobs. When Falwell died, a student at the college he founded was busted for making pipe bombs to use against anyone who demonstrated at the funeral.
And of course, we all remember Jim Adkisson, the lunatic who shot up a Unitarian Church last summer because he wanted all liberals dead. He killed two and wounded six others, was a devotee of right wing squawkers Sean Hannity, Michael Savage and Bill O'Reilly and police found a wide array of right-wing hate-literature in his home when they searched it after he was taken into custody. Knoxville Police Department Officer Steve Still wrote in a document obtained by a local television station that Adkisson targeted the church 'because of its liberal teachings and his belief that all liberals should be killed because they were ruining the country, and that he felt that the Democrats had tied his country's hands in the war on terror and they had ruined every institution in America with the aid of media outlets.'
Now another tragedy has occurred. On Tuesday an Alabama man went on a rampage across two counties, fired approximately 200 rounds of ammo and killed ten people, mostly relatives, before killing himself. And on Thursday, Glenn Beck blamed the tragedy on 'political correctness' that, apparently, disenfranchises the denizens of outer wingnuttia.
BECK: So, the shooting in Alabama.
BECK: Did you hear how they described this guy? I mean, it was a typical, you know, "he was a loner. He was quiet. I didn't know." I mean, it was really...But what they really described, when they really got down into it, what they said was: "here's a guy who felt that he had been wronged. He didn't feel comfortable talking to anybody. He was disgruntled and everything else." And then he went out and shot a bunch of people. As they were describing him - and they said, you've got to go, now more than ever, you've got to start talking to people. You have to start connecting with people because we're going into hard times yada yada yada. As I'm listening to the description. First of all, this guy's a psycho. Clearly, he's a psycho.
BECK: But as I'm listening to him. I'm thinking about the American people that feel disenfranchised right now. That feel like nobody's hearing their voice. The government isn't hearing their voice. Even if you call, they don't listen to you on both sides. If you're a conservative, you're called a racist. You want to starve children.
BECK: Yada yada yada. And every time they do speak out, they're shut down by political correctness. How do you not have those people turn into that guy?
O'REILLY: Well, look, nobody, even if they're frustrated, is going to hurt another human being unless they're mentally ill. I think.
BECK: I think pushed to the wall, you don't think people get pushed to the wall?
O'REILLY: Nah, I don't believe in this snap thing. I think that that kind of violence is inside you and it's a personality disorder. But I do understand the frustration of people. But it's called fighting the good fight. That's what it's called, fighting the good fight. You stand up for your belief system, you tell people what you believe, you take the slings and arrows - both you do, I do, we have to take it. But you fight. You fight for your country. You fight for your family. You fight for your dignity. And that's it. And you don't hurt other people in the process. You just fight the good fight.
Tell me again why should I ever consider taking these idiots or anything they spew seriously?
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