Thursday, May 31, 2007

Lou Dobbs Full Of

OK folks--get a grip. Kindly corpulent TV reporter Lou Dobbs isn't a nice man. I've been telling my dad for months now that Lou Dobbs is not the kindly, erudite, gentlemanly TV news host he thinks he is. Lou Dobbs is a bigotted wolf in sheep's clothing, who claims that he's only telling the "truth," and that the radical left-wingers and right-wigners are "after" him. Well, at the least, we now know that Lou is paranoid.

It's always disheartening to see a "respected" TV news journalist who gets a foothold on the airwaves take the advantage of that foothold and editorialize his or her own reality while calling it "fact." Lou Dobbs has been called to account for his errors, and his bias, and he's all pissed off about it. Check out his rant on regarding an article in the New York Times calling him on the carpet for making false statements in his newscasts. Oh for sure he claims these were minor factual errors amidst the bigger idological problem at hand--illegal immigration bringing ruin on American society--but why did he need to "bend" the facts to suit his point?

Seems Lou had on his show advocates against discrimination from the Southern Poverty Law Center--an institution which I have written about which watches out for the rest of us by keeping tabs on hate groups, terrorists, you-name-it which wants to hurt us for reasons of racism and bigotry. Lou calls the Southern Poverty Law Center, whose founder and chief legal cousel Morris Dees has put in jail the most feared and violent white supremicist hatemongers in this country--Lou calls this organization "left wing."

Without bothering anyone further, including me, with the "gory" details of how far afield Lou Dobbs is from a true unbiased journalist, let me just ask you to check out the Southern Poverty Law Center's references to Lou Dobbs's ridiculous ideas of fair and honest reporting--as well as the article in the New York Times.

Most importantly, watch out for the kindly TV news reader who is out to undermine our great society. The bigots abound, and unless you are white, and can trace your family back to the several dozen people who came over to the New World on the Mayflower, you have a reason to fear your neighbor, and a right to protect yourself as an American.

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

In Deference to an Expert

I prefer to let the experts expouse on the current goings on--here's one who is hard to refute from the New York Review of Books:

Rory Stewart is chief executive of the Turquoise Mountain Foundation, a non-profit organization in Kabul devoted to social and urban redevelopment in Afghanistan. A former member of the British Foreign Office, he served, from 2003 to 2004, the Coalition Provisional Authority in Iraq as Deputy Governor of the southern provinces of Maysan and Dhi Qar, an experience he described in the book The Prince of the Marshes:

...What would I do in Iraq now? I am not an expert, but I believe that the time has come to withdraw, that our presence is infantilizing the Iraqi political system. That we're like an inadequate antibiotic...

...we have discredited democracy in the eyes of many Iraqis...

...were we to withdraw, things would improve....

... there is simply no point hanging around. It would seem to me that starting to leave tomorrow, as opposed to in two years' time or six years' time, would make no difference; the situation would be the same. And there cannot be a justification for continuing, day by day, to kill Iraqis and to have our own soldiers killed in this kind of war....

OK this guy was on the ground living in Iraq and working with the powers that be--can anyone get me a better source? Is George Bush and his cry of terrorism in our midst, in a speech to the Coast Guard Academy really going to trump reality in a foreign land?

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Forgiveness Book on RADIO!

Cindy's new book is growing in popularity--and you can hear her latest interview right now by clicking on the upper left-hand box on this blog. She's captivating, magnetic, and uplifting--go ahead--MAKE YOUR DAY!!

Then go to and sign up for free newsletters and more--it's all very exciting and you can be part of it!

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Falwell and the Religious Right

In 2003 I wrote a book about bigotry in America. I pointed out examples of its presence in all of our lives, despite the opinion of so many people that in recent years, racism is not as prevalent as it was in the mid 1900's. I wrote the book because that opinion is wrong, and in fact dangerous, because the racism of today's politically-correct society is hidden just below the surface and ready to rear its ugly little ignorant head at any moment, for any reason.

Here is an excerpt from that book, specifically chosen today because one of the best examples of subliminal and acceptable hatred was in the form of Jerry Falwell, who rides the headlines in his death this morning.

(From Pardon My Prejudice, America's Excuse for Bigotry)

The fanning of the flames of bigotry against Muslims in America since the events of September 11 comes partly from the statements made by influential well-known leaders of Conservative Christianity, also referred to as the “religious right,” as in “right wing.” Included in this group is the Reverend Jerry Falwell. Falwell gave an interview for “60 Minutes” in October, 2002, in which he stated,

"I think Mohammed was a terrorist. I read enough…by both Muslims and non-Muslims, [to decide] that he was a violent man, a man of war. I n my opinion…Jesus set the example for love, as did Moses, and I think Mohammed set an opposite example." (Falwell told Simon)

It is important to recognize that millions of Americans follow his right-wing Christian point of view, which is practically a formal doctrine. This doctrine includes his outlook that Israel must be a Jewish state. That is because according to him, the Second Coming of Jesus Christ can only happen under this specific circumstance. His idea also stipulates the EXCLUSION of Muslims being in control of any Israeli “biblical” territory. And therefore, after the ultimate war of Armageddon, he believes Christianity will rule and all remaining Jews will convert at that time.

The fact that this point of view is supported by millions of Christians means that it can’t be eschewed as some strange claim of a fringe group. The views of Reverend Falwell, Pat Robertson, and other leaders of the right-wing Christian “moral majority,” are interpreted by them as mainstream biblical fact. And they believe this is what makes an honest, moral American.

The truth is, Falwell, Robertson and others of the religious right, represent a minority of Christian Americans. Since the extreme point of view of the religious right does not represent the belief of a majority of Christians, the same can be said about those who follow Islam. Not everyone who is of the faith of Islam can be categorized as extremist as depicted by Falwell’s comments.

Regardless of the religious faith, it is the fanatics who are dangerous, not the religion.
When asked about Falwell’s interview, Ibrahim Hooper, the spokesman for the Council on American-Islamic Relation in Washington, DC, said:

“Anybody is free to be a bigot if they want to. What really concerns us is the lack of reaction by mainstream religious and political leaders, who say nothing when these bigots voice these attacks.” [ 10/2/02]

It is one thing for Falwell to have a platform to promote bigotry, it is another problem to have silence from the majority who could speak out against this bigotry. His comments only polarize the country, pandering to the simmering hate that he should be trying to quell. His intent was to provoke a racist and blaming atmosphere.

In a Los Angeles Times article almost two weeks later, The executive board of the National Council of Churches finally said “Falwell’s remark…was uninformed and dangerous. This council called on President Bush to repudiate Falwell’s words.” [LA TIMES 10/12/02]
They wanted the President to speak out against Falwell and bigoted statements like these.

However the effects of Falwell’s words were already put into action. Conflict arose, and killing was the outcome, all over Falwell’s inciteful words.
The headline read, “Nine people dead” [LA TIMES 10/13/02]
Muslims were angered around the world due to what Falwell said, and Hindu-Muslim clashes in India resulted in death. This incident took place the next day after his comments.

It is hard to unring a bell. It is hard to take back words. These statements incited global anger that resulted in people killing one another. Under enormous pressure, Falwell apologized for his remarks. He stated he meant no disrespect to “any sincere, law-abiding Muslim.” Still, his intent to justify his words displayed a lack of integrity.

Obviously, the usage of words can be strikingly powerful. In an editorial by Benjamin J. Hubbard, we can see more of the ripple effect words have. Hubbard is professor and chair of the department of comparative religion at Cal State Fullerton. He wrote,

“Evil and ignorant words—whether directed against a religion, a racial group or a minority such as gays and lesbians—have the power to incite hatred and violence. Falwell and his anti-Muslim ilk, and the world’s anti-Semites, need to consider the spiritual pain and potential verbal and physical abuse their words can cause to Muslims or Jews. Correspondingly, the courageous words and deeds of good people, in opposing ignorance and hate, have the power to blunt bigotry and mend the world.”[LA TIMES 10/13/02]
If anything good can come out of this it is the idea that we have the power through our words to build bridges rather than create divisions. If a platform can be provided for bigotry, why not create a bigger stage for tolerance and acceptance? If the news media want to give a balanced point of view, then when an interview with Falwell is aired, why not also put on a spokesperson who can educate and inform with the truth?

Friday, May 11, 2007

Merck Again only WORSE

Study casts new doubts on HPV vaccine--Reads the headline in the Los Angeles Times. While this speaks for itself, it doesn't tell the whole story. The vaccine may be causing an ecologically deleterious effect which will make cancer and other diseases among women even more widespread:

...the data also hinted that blocking the targeted strains might have opened an ecological niche that allowed the flourishing of HPV strains previously considered to be minor players, partially offsetting the vaccine's protection.

Ever the optimists--or more likely, the greediest--Merck is quoted on a positive note:

The maker of the vaccine, Merck & Co., said the studies clearly showed that the vaccine prevented infections from the two HPV strains and reduced the number of precancerous lesions caused by the them.

But the doctors are not quite so sure:

Immunologist W. Martin Kast of USC's Keck School of Medicine, who was not involved in the research, said he thought the study had not gone on long enough to prove the vaccine's worth.

Consumers need to keep ducking.