A Few Things that Piss Me Off

News is often debate masquerading as information. Debate is not, in and of itself, information. Although some prefer information and facts, we have been treated to an ever-increasing diet of blathering on, posturing around and obfuscating of the story of the day. A document is revealed, two sides debate its contents. It pisses me off. News outlets can say definitively what the document says. There are some things about which debate is merely a way of hiding from the obvious…a delay tactic…a PR move designed to obscure the only logical conclusion.

The news should not primarily be about debating a story…it should be about news gathering and story telling. It should be informational, not a persuasive attack.

That’s the first thing that pisses me off.

The following have also been nagging at me for some time, a few are more recent annoyances.

1. The invasion and occupation of Iraq is…about OIL! How can there be any debate on this? Iraq had the second largest oil reserves in the world, Cheney’s Energy Commission pored over oil maps of Iraq, the Saudis have a huge interest in that oil not flooding the market and, thus, keeping their profits high…as do the big oil companies who, not coincidentally, have had nothing but record profits since the invasion. When White House mouthpiece Ari Fleischer held the first post-invasion press conference he announced that “Operation Iraq Liberation had begun”…get it? O.I.L. You can’t make this shit up…I’ve seen the videotape. These guys love acronyms. Remember George warning Iraqis against attacking the oil infrastructure? Remember the oil fields being guarded right off the bat? See, the problem is that the oil is not flowing out of Iraq. If it’s about oil, why isn’t it flowing, right? Because of artificial scarcity. Oil prices have been inflated by the invasion, ensuing chaos and the end of the Oil for Food program. Two primary beneficiaries are the Saudis and oil companies…and boy have they made bank off this. And one final note…had Saddam been certified WMD-free, as we now know he essentially was, he would’ve been able to open his oil fields, drive down prices and profits for you know who, might have made good on his threat to trade oil in euros instead of dollars and the privatization of Iraq oil fields–which has quietly been going on since Paul Bremer went it—wouldn’t have happened. That oil will be hitting the market…all in good time.

2. We are never leaving Iraq. Never. Get used to it. All this crap about exit strategies, handing over Iraq once it’ a democracy…all utter bullshit. Has anyone read “Rebuilding America’s Defenses” by the Project for a New American Century? C’mon you jerks…read it. They write that regime is a pretext for establishing a permanent military presence in Iraq. We are building permanent bases around the country, and ominously on the border with Iran. This Administration doesn’t have an exit strategy…not out of incompetence…but because they never planned to leave. Wake up!

3. And on this whole incompetence theory…they are not incompetent. The incompetence was mostly in the news media and the Congress for buying the obvious BS of being welcomed with flowers, of only costing the US $1.5 billion, of WMD’s and nuclear programs and Saddam’s connection to 9/11. I didn’t buy it. Many in the alternative media…those who read and investigated and read overseas sources…they didn’t buy it. These guys knew there were no WMDs…which is why they had such a hard-on for invasion…they had to invade before Saddam could get the sanctions lifted and begin pumping his oil at full capacity. Plus, Saddam would remain in power and his oil fields would remain a nationalized asset…not privatized into the hands of President Gas’ supporters. They sold us all a pack of lies. Admit it.

4. Rumsfeld and Cheney knew it was torture, they authorized it…documents have been a fairly clear paper trail…even though the documents in question only got mentioned during one news cycle last year. It is torture.

5. They are spying on Americans, collecting data and tracking potential enemies…and I’m not talking about Infidel Arabs who wants to kill us because we are free. First, it was the Total Information Awareness Network under Iran-Contra criminal John Poindexter. That got changed, privatized and handed over, in part, to Florida election voter purger Choice Point. Now we have the NSA wiretapping. And the FBI announces that PETA and other groups are being tracked. And, like a shooting star, was a one-day story last week about the Pentagon’s TALON program, which was tracking anti-war activists, among others, and collecting information like license plate numbers, automobile model and type info…and generally tracking those Americans who oppose the Administration’s war policies. They went to anti-recruiting meetings, small citizens’ meetings…and the story got pushed off the page by the NSA thing. I think TALON is a bigger scandal…which is perhaps why it disappeared.

6. Hey…didya hear? We were tracking Mohammed Atta a year-plus before 9-11 and we suspected he was a terrorist cell leader. Oh…sorry, I guess that’s not really the sort of thing that’d start a Goddamn scandal, or anything. Or the FBI living with two other hijackers in San Diego…naw…forget about it.

7. No broadcast story about Avian Flu and Tamiflu ever mentions that Don Rumsfeld was chair of Gilead Sciences–the patent holder–when they came up with the drug, a drug that had been a huge bust financially. Now taxpayers are buying millions of doses and stockholder Rummy is going to make bank. Oh, Rummy was chair of Searle when they got the FDA to certify aspartame…funny how this guy is so big into pharmaceuticals.

8. I’m sick and tired the incompetence thing…I know, I mentioned it already…but let’s get over it. They are spending $100s of millions on propaganda/psychological warfare operations in Iraq and around the world. I know…I’m working on that story right now. And they used the same techniques here–buying Armstrong Williams, and others to write pieces, creating fake news stories about their Medicare reform and prescription drug plan, selling us a war on intelligence that people with the CIA, the FBI and the Dept. Energy knew and said was crap…but they were ignored and, in some cases, ordered to keep their mouths shut. The only intelligence failure is on the part of the media and the American people.

Whew…thank you. Good night, and good luck.

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