The South-East Asia Earthquake and Tsunami...the SEA-EAT blog for short. News and information about resources, aid, donations and volunteer efforts...American Street has more Tsunami Blogs you can rely on and Tsunami Blogs you can rely on, Pt. 2. plus, Google has set up a central Tsunami Aid and info page.
NEW YORK -- The Diamondbacks and Yankees have agreed on a deal that would send Randy Johnson to New York for Javier Vazquez, prospects and cash, major league sources told ESPN. The paperwork has not yet been submitted to the baseball commissioner's office, but that is the next step for the deal to be finalized.
Does that shift the power away from the Red Sox Nation?
Charles P. Pierce pours a nice stiff drink, then lobs a warm "f--- you" at the wingers for their craven attempt to politicize Christmas:
So it is well within the spirit of the season when I say, how dare the smug bastards attempt to wedge the season into that cramped and miserable place in which they keep their jackal-eyed ambitions? Just when you thought there was no bottom to the barrel, the usual suspects decide to use Christmas as another means by which to set Americans against each other. Conflict serves political goals, and it makes great cable television, and those are the only reasons why this whole "Christmas Under Siege" campaign erupted.
The political goal is to distract us from the fact that C-Plus Augustus and his party are embarking on a legislative agenda that would make Jacob Marley look like Dorothy Day, and the latter purposes serve only the likes of Bill O'Reilly, who's coming increasingly detached from his internal loofah, and Pat Buchanan, who has not lived a day in public life where he didn't appeal to the country's basest instincts. So we get a blizzard of dishonest anecdote and absurd posturing in the service of a lunatic masquerade that encourages one group of Americans not to trust another group of Americans, and assures them that they are simultaneously superior in their morality and utterly in peril. And why? For power and for ratings, nothing more. The people pushing this notion know it's crazy. All they have to do is look around them, for pity's sake. Yet they will coin this season for their own cheap advantage.
Remember Marley's warning: "Or would you know...the weight and length of the strong coil you bear yourself? It was full as heavy and as long as this, seven Christmas Eves ago ... It is a ponderous chain."
Krauthammer was on "Special Report" on Faux News Tuesday night (no link, LexisNexis). He's responding to U.N. Undersecretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs Jan Egeland's assertion that the US is "stingy" with its foreign aid:
KRAUTHAMMER: But that is a complete distortion of the truth of how America helps the world, because we give in other ways that are not measured. First of all, we have the largest private giving in the world. Bill Gates alone is doing more to help Africans than Mr. Egeland and all of Norway and Sweden put together.
Hacktackular. Look how generous we as a country are. The richest person in the world gives money, so we're awesome... Now enjoy how Krauthammer distorts the situation to make it sound like we're sacrificing ourselves nobly for the people of Asia:
... by opening our trade up as we have and destroying a lot of domestic industries, like textiles and others, we have raised the level of income of poor countries, particularly in Asia. The largest lifting of people out of hunger and poverty in history.
I wish this were a joke:
House Speaker J. Dennis Hastert is leaning toward removing the House ethics committee chairman, who admonished House Majority Leader Tom DeLay this fall and has said he will treat DeLay like any other member, several Republican aides said yesterday. Although Hastert (Ill.) has not made a decision, the expectation among leadership aides is that the chairman, Rep. Joel Hefley (R-Colo.), long at odds with party leaders because of his independence, will be replaced when Congress convenes next week.
This would be funny if it were in an Orwell novel, but it's not. Ya know what's even less funny? Who his replacement will be:
The aides said a likely replacement is Rep. Lamar S. Smith More...
Lobbying Report.... Political Moneyline has just issued its first lobbying report for 2004 and reports that total spending for the first six months of the year was $1.06 billion, an increase of 38% since 2000. Obviously these guys are having no problem keeping up with inflation. Three of the top ten spenders (GE, Freddie Mac, and Philip Morris) appear to be garden variety corporate lobbyists. Among the other seven, though, you'll note the dead absence of anything resembling a liberal cause. In fact, unless I miss my guess, five of the seven are united in whole or part by a single topic: tort reform. No wonder it's at the top of George Bush's agenda this year. More....
...was pleased to see the President of the United States put down the frigging rake long enough to put on his best Sunday-go-to-meetin' suit and issue a public statement regarding the catastrophic tsunami...Clearing brush? What is he, Luke on The Real McCoys, Eb on Green Acres, or the cardboard cut-out figurehead leader of the free world?
Given the sedated performance he put on today, which resembled a clinical demonstration of "lack of affect" for beginning interns, Bush needn't worry that anyone will confuse him with Huggy-Bear Bill or accuse him of overdoing the empathy. He'll never be mistaken for a mensch.
Wonkette: Tsunami Coverage, Worthy of Gentle Mocking, Right? Yeah?
A Wonkette operative with too much time on his hands wrote in to share his favorite moment from CNN's tsunami coverage, noting Tucker Carlson's awkward interview with an eyewitness. According the operative, the exchange went something like this:
Tucker: Imagine having a wonderful dream and waking up to see a wall of water just about to crash down on you. Well, that's what happened to John Austin. We've got him on the line right now. Mr. Austin? What did you do when you woke up to see the tsunami?
Tucker: Mr. Austin?
Tucker: Hi, Mr. Austin.
Austin: Hello? This is John Austin. (You could almost hear him follow up with "To whom am I speaking with")
Tucker: Hi, Mr. Austin. What did you do when you woke up to see the tsunami?
Austin: Are you looking for John Austin?
Tucker: Hi, Mr. Austin. Are you there?
Austin: This is John Austin. This line isn't very good.
Tucker: What did you do when you woke up to see the tsunami? Austin: Hello? Tucker: What did you do when you woke up to see the tsunami? Austin: Oh, hi. Well, I'd been drinking the night before so I was a little bit groggy from it and I turned on the Discovery Channel and started watching a thing about Hitler and how there were twenty seven assassination attempts about him when I...
It's moments like that are why we treasure live television. But sometimes find things can be "too good to be true." Imagine our surprise when, according to the CNN transcript, our operative looked to be on track! Except for one crucial detail:
Austin: And I had woken up with several hours sleep and (UNINTELLIGIBLE) and so forth and turned on Discovery and was watching some program with Adolf Hitler and how he survived 27 assassination attempts.
Yes, we try that (unintelligible) trick to cover up drinking, too.
Let us know how it's working!