Sunday Roast: “If we amplify everything, we hear nothing”

Reason?  Sanity?  Yes, please.

200,000 people on the Washington Mall, celebrating the fact that we are more alike than we are different; proclaiming to the world and the media that we WILL NOT live our lives in fear; and that we will not be manipulated into voting against our own best interests.

This is us.

This is our daily open thread.  Share whatever’s on your mind.

72 thoughts on “Sunday Roast: “If we amplify everything, we hear nothing”

  1. This harkens to what the dragonfly wrote the other evening about barriers and the breaking down of same…

    I couldn’t help but admire that man and his ability to break down the barriers to effective communications between people who can’t have a normal conversation. Unable to see or hear, he was polished communicator, better than many people who have the abilities he lacked.

    That’s my sermon for the night.

    You are a wise and learned man –

    We do have a tendency to set up the barriers that keep us ‘back’. Fear plays a factor in that: fear of being thought a fool if we make a mistake. Fear of the unknown but even worse – not allaying that fear by gaining knowledge to break the barrier/fear.

  2. I get daily emails from announcing their postings of new articles, news flashes, etc. Yesterday, under their “BuzzFlash” heading the following short essay was included, one which I thought had a lot to say and said it quite well, fleshing out points that I’m sure a lot of us have seen or sensed to be on the increase over the last X-number of years. Altogether it’s a brief but not at all complimentary statement of the path this country seems to be on, one which leads, i.m.o., nowhere but down toward the point where in the not too distant future, not even an informed electorate will be able to force a reversal.


    Sinclair Lewis once wrote, “When fascism comes to America, it will be wrapped in the flag and carrying a cross.”

    Jeff Fecke, in a Google group entry received by BuzzFlash, comments on how that disturbing specter is emerging today:

    “The path that the Palins and Angles and Millers and their ilk would have us take is the same that Mussolini charted for Italy. They’ve prettied it up, of course. They’ve sanded off the edges. And they’ve added the extra dimension of religion to it – the idea that we are fighting a war against Islam, which is in league with socialism, and that Christianity must be bolstered.”

    Fecke reflects on how hesitant we are to use the word “fascism” to describe Americans who seek simple answers to complex problems through authoritarian leadership and religious and racial purity.

    The US is in the midst of a tumultuous economic and identity crisis. As a nation, we are impatient with long-term solutions and want the quick fix. The raw, emotional appeal of “restoring” dreams of grandeur by blaming America’s difficulties on scapegoats leads to support for peddlers of mythic glory and the affirmation of one’s racial and religious identity, as long as it is white and Christian.

    The belief in a Christian “American exceptionalism” inevitably leads to submission to the state under the power of individuals who anoint themselves upholders of the Bible and a self-serving vision of the Constitution.

    “Because they believe that they are the saviors of their nation, they are willing to do almost anything to gain power – lie, pull dirty tricks and resort to violence against political opponents,” Fecke writes. “Indeed, in every country where this philosophy has taken hold, it has used extrajudicial action by its members to intimidate its opponents.”

    This is no passing Halloween nightmare.

    Mark Karlin
    Editor, BuzzFlash at Truthout

  3. There’s one big difference between the time of Mussolini and now and that is the Internet. Information flies within moments so it becomes more difficult to control most of the people with lies. Yesterday’s rally is proof that most people are in the middle. Even if some of their ideals are to the left or to the right, still most of their ideals are in the middle. This is why Democrats tend to govern from the middle because this way they represent the most rather than the few. Republicans govern from the right thereby representing less. The only way to get more people to vote for them, Republicans NEED to use fear as their tool. Otherwise, most people will turn their backs on them.

  4. Speaking of fear. From Abby Mann’s Academy Award winning script for the 1961 movie, Judgment at Nuremberg. German judge Ernst Janning is speaking:

    (Ernst Janning):
    There was a fever over the land. A fever of disgrace, of indignity, of hunger. We had a democracy, yes, but it was torn by elements within. There was, above all, fear. Fear of today, fear of tomorrow, fear of our neighbors, fear of ourselves. Only when you understand that can you understand what Hitler meant to us. Because he said to us: ‘Lift up your heads! Be proud to be German! There are devils among us. Communists, Liberals, Jews, Gypsies! Once the devils will be destroyed, your miseries will be destroyed.’ It was the old, old story of the sacrificial lamb.”

    Change a small handful of words and names and it feels frighteningly familiar.

  5. I’m too old to be afraid of anything that has to do with me. But I do have children, and I have to admit that what I see makes me fearful for their respective futures. And what puzzles me most is the question: how is it possible that so many are so uninformed and unseeing as to be willing to put the fascist thugs back in the driver’s seat?

    Disinformation and “diseducation”: America’s twin dilemmas, both of which effectively first came on line on day one of the American right wing’s coup d’etat: November 22, 1963.

  6. Frugal,

    People are attracted to confident leaders. Studies show confidence in one’s position is inversely related to knowledge – i.e. the more one knows, the more one knows what he/she does not know. The ignorant are clueless about their limitations, and quite confident that they know it all.

    Thus people blindly follow ignorant, but confident leaders. Let’s face it, it’s easier to let someone else do the thinking for you. Limbaugh’s “ditto-heads” are a perfect example.

    Those of us who can, and do think for ourselves are astounded at those of us who blindly follow their charismatic leaders to their own denigration. But, ignorance is bliss, and those folks who are conned into voting against their own interests time after time live in a constant state of bliss.

  7. Yep, BnF, I agree completely. My puzzlement is where does all the ignorance come from in the first place? And why? Is it a failure of education? If so, could it be that massive ignorance is a political endpoint of some sort? Propaganda has long been a means of mind control, but I never thought I’d see it here. But these day, it stands out in such catchy little concepts as “Evolution is only a theory” (obviously a slogan devised by someone who has no idea what a theory really entails); as “global warming is a hoax” (in spite of all the obvious signs), or “global warming has nothing to do with humans use of fossil fuels — it’s a cyclical thing (discounting the increased and increasing CO2 levels in the atmosphere, attributable to fossil fuel consumption) — etc., etc., the list goes on and on. Then there’s the “your taxes are going up” mantra when they’ve really been going down; the “Obama deficits are killing us” mantra even when the first Obama deficit was 125 billion less than Bush’s last one.

    Propaganda induces fear, induces hatred in response to fear — as has always been its intent. And it works, somehow. How can that be?

    An old friend, many years ago, simply named the process “The Human Dilemma.” I suspect he was correct with that.

    But how to change it? I was never thus burdened, thanks to my parents. My children aren’t burdened either, they can think for themselves and sift out truth from fiction in the process. Still, it’s disconcerting when close to half the population cannot get there from where they are, from where they came from.

    Me, I’m ready for an island somewhere, a place unknown to the rest of the world. Beaches, flowers, birds, fish in the lagoon, and no TV. No radio even. Yep. When I find it I’ll let y’all know!

  8. I rewrote a post from Pilotshark at Think Progress:

    Four Questions and Answers For Undecided Voters

    By Jed Lewison Fri Oct 29, 2010 at 10:40:03 AM PDT

    1. What was the average monthly private sector job growth in 2008, the final year of the Bush presidency, and what has it been so far in 2010?

    In 2008, the final year of George W. Bush’s presidency the country lost an average of 317,250 private sector jobs per month. Thus far in 2010, we have gained an average of 95,888 private sector jobs per month. That is a difference of nearly five million jobs between Bush’s last year in office and President Obama’s second year.

    2. What was the Federal deficit for the last fiscal year of the Bush presidency, and what was it for the first full fiscal year of the Obama presidency?

    The Bush Administration’s final budget, FY2009, which began on September 1, 2008s, had a budget deficit of $1.416 trillion. The first budget of the Obama Administration, FY2010, that began on September 1, 2009, had a budget deficit of $1.291 trillion, a decline of $125 billion. Yes, that means President Obama has cut the deficit — there’s a long way to go, but we’re in better shape now than we were under Bush and the GOP.

    3. What was the stock market at on the last day of the Bush presidency? What is it at today?

    On Bush’s final day in office:

    Dow closed at 7,949 NASDAQ closed at 1,440 S&P 500 closed at 805

    On October 29 2009 at 1:15PM EDT

    Dow closed at 11,108 NASDAQ closed at 2,512 S&P 500 closed at 1,183.

    That means since President Obama took office, the Dow increase 40%, NASDAQ increased 74 % and the S&P 500 increased 47%.

    4. Which party’s candidate for Speaker of the House campaigned on October 30, 2010, the weekend before the midterm election, for one of his party’s candidates for the House of Representatives who likes to re-enact history as a Nazi dressed up in a SS uniform?

    A. John Boehner, Republican from Ohio could become Speaker of the House, if the Republican Party gains control of the House of Representatives, will campaign with Nazi re-enactor Rich Iott the weekend before the 2010 midterm election. If you need an explanation why this is offensive, you are a lost cause.

  9. Sometimes I wonder if the feeling of fear is what makes some people feel like they are alive because they have no other feelings.

    I do have concerns about the future for my children and grandchildren and for all the other people from the younger generations. Their choices this week will have a greater impact on their future than on mine. I’m old. If Social Security is dismantled, then I sell my possessions and move in with my adult children. See what I mean 🙂 about impact?

  10. This from CBS News:

    An estimated 215,000 people attended a rally organized by Comedy Central talk show hosts Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert Saturday in Washington, according to a crowd estimate commissioned by CBS News.

    The company based the attendance at the “Rally to Restore Sanity and/or Fear” on aerial pictures it took over the rally, which took place on the Mall in Washington. It has a margin of error of plus or minus 10 percent. (See some of the pictures used to create the estimate here.)

    CBS News also commissioned to do a crowd estimate of Glenn Beck’s “Restoring Honor” rally in August. That rally was estimated to have attracted 87,000 people. Amid criticism from conservatives that the estimate was low, CBS News detailed the methodology behind it here.

    Check out the photos here.

    Here’s the full text of Jon’s speech at the end.

  11. Pachy, what thread was Pilotshark’s comment on?

    I notice State of the Division is back today. I guess the Wonk Room got a little lonely for him.

  12. “I notice State of the Division is back today. I guess the Wonk Room got a little lonely for him.”

    House, nice to know someone else (you) check the Wonk Room/SoD over at TP.

    Guess you are correct – he already knew the answers to the questions he posed to himself =:>

  13. On a different note..

    Comedian/actor Zach Galifianakis pulls out and smokes a joint on Bill Maher’s show (to the shock of his panelists – including Lawrence O’Donnell)…

  14. You have to sign-in or sign-up to view the video.
    Someone tagged it an inappropriate for under 18.

    I laugh at the ‘moral’ police – there are some ‘racy’ videos that aren’t tagged for age appropriate. Of course you’ll know ‘porn’ when you see it (always makes me laugh – for I find religious fundamentalists to be obscene. Salaries to professional sports quite obscene. That gwb is free to throw out the first ball at tonight’s game is also quite obscene – he should be awaiting a trial that will never happen.

  15. Cats, thanks for that link. I can’t believe how many people showed up in DC. The photos at the CBS site are amazing.

    I went to the Fox News page and their blurb on it zeroed in on a person there promoting legalizing pot. Of all that went on yesterday, that is what they reported on. I guess that makes the whole even about liberal potheads..

  16. Perhaps someone can help me with this problem. I always have to log back in at TP. Is there a way to stay logged in? At other blogs, my login remains at least for one week if not more. TP doesn’t save the login. I don’t use Firefox or Chrome because too many “ad cookies” get added to my computer. I don’t have that “ad cookie” problem with IE or Safari and there are websites that don’t work with Opera.

  17. Wonder if Fox picked-up on this:

    Newy Scruggs – a reporter from NBC Dallas. Prior to the game, Newy pointed out (live on air) that some people off camera were engaging in a little pre-game marijuana consumption.

    Said Newy: “This is San Francisco and I can tell you, right over there (he points) there’s some people smoking weed because it’s coming this way. We are truly in San Francisco.”

    Newy went on to call out the pot smokers three times in his two-minute segment and was jokingly advised by an NBCDFW anchor to hold his breath.

  18. Muse, I was just pointing that out because some don’t like to have to ‘sign-in’ .


    Cats, I use Safari and signed up at TP with DISQUS and have had no problem staying logged-in.

    House is good at these things – if he’s still hanging out – I’m sure he’d help.

  19. Cats, are you using DISQUS?

    The only stable connection I can maintain with TP now is to use Chrome. I do not have problems with cookies in either Chrome or Firefox, but I have a robust anti-virus program and have Spybot Search & Destroy set up with immunization. Bots rarely need to be cleaned out because they don’t get through.

    I did get a bad worm a few weeks ago, after being spoofed by a fake Adobe Flash upgrade. In addition to a thorough virus scan, I had to run a program called Temporary File Cleaner which completely scrubbed all the temp folders, including the folder holding the worm. I was astonished at how much space was being used by all those different folders.

  20. muse, the Maher video can be viewed through the Huff Po site – without having to sign-in.

    Prop 19 legalizing pot for personal/recreational consumption has fallen out of favor – it’s currently losing in the polls.

    I expect it’ll be re-introduced should it fail on Tuesday.

    It took a long time to get marijuana approved for medical use.

  21. “But how to change it?”

    We can’t. The better questions are, how to co-exist with it/how to survive it.

    The wise will co-exist in silence, and in silence, survive. Their offspring will continue the evolution of the species. We who are public in challenging it must be ready to become invisible, to leave the country, should it gain enough power to begin the purges.

  22. Good Morning all & Happy Halloween/Samhaine..

    Thanks for the link Lady Muse and comments from others..Good reads..

    Watched much of the rally yesterday in between packing, walking and herding critters and general madness going on here. It was great and good to see the huge crowd’s….Take this and stuff it becksters would be my comment..

    Still getting tons of mail from all the people running, they are spending millions on color printing and mail outs to this voter and others that most likely sent their votes in the day after they were received…So much madness…

    After many distressing delays I am hoping to be on the road by next week end so not likely to be posting any where for a month or so…Peace, Blessings & Joy to you all..

  23. House, don’t know where Pilot Shark parked this but it is from DailyKos and here it is

    Four questions for Republicans…and four answers for undecided voters
    By Jed Lewison

  24. Thank you, 2ebb..And Thank you for posting music I like so often…

    Another couple of quick thoughts…Denver Broncos in London.? Where have I been..Missed their losses the past couple of weeks and now they are out of the country..Nice gig if one can get it, I’m not so lucky.LOL..I’m having a terrible time just trying to get out of state.

    Lady Cats, I signed up with the D thingie, am a Safari user and have not had to sign in since, I only fly over TP to read the headers and post sledum any more. Still do not like the new format, mainly because they are no longer numbered and don’t have the interest to reread all the junk to find out where I left off….LOL..An old age thing I am sure.. P. B & J all.

  25. ebb,

    Thanks for finding that on kos, had I finished reading down to your comment I wound not have spent half an hour going back through TP threads. 🙂

  26. Cats r Flyfishn
    October 31, 2010 at 6:32 am
    There’s one big difference between the time of Mussolini and now and that is the Internet.

    Well, that and that these clowns are really lame at the Brownshirt action. When it takes 4-5 of them to beat down a 110 pound female, they better start praying that they outnumber us (by a huge margin) if they ever try to act on their impotent rage.

  27. Somewhere around 900 years ago, the Persian mathematician and poet, Omar Khayyam, wrote the following quatrain, presumably in Farsi. 150 years ago, the Englishman Edward Fitzgerald translated a whole pile of Khayyam’s quatrains and published them as “The Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam.” In Fitzgerald’s third edition (1872), V. XLVIII seems to me, today — on the eve of the 2010 election — to be an almost eerie condensation of the USA’s last two years, a summary of the inevitable consequence of that experience, of that brief window of hope and optimism.

    A Moment’s Halt–a momentary taste
    Of BEING from the Well amid the Waste–
    And LO!–the phantom Caravan has reach’d
    The NOTHING it set out from–Oh, make haste!

    Today, I assume Fitzgerald’s updated translation, third and fourth lines, would read, “And LOL!–the phantom Caravan has reach’d / The NOTHING it set out from …” As in back to Republican control yet one more time.

    Poetry can be fun. 🙂

    • Hello, all.

      Great comments this morning. Still feeling like crap today, but used a little energy smacking a couple trolls on TP. I’ll check in now and then today.

      Happy Halloween!

  28. Gummitch – I use Spybot and I have CCleaner. Spybot always picks up Adbrite cookies when I use either Chrome or Firefox. Perhaps it’s time to clean up with CCleaner. I hate using it because it removes my stored passwords some of which I need for my business.

  29. House is good at these things – if he’s still hanging out – I’m sure he’d help.

    I don’t know anything about Safari or Opera. Haven’t use Firefox since I retired the old computer. I am using Chrome with Disqus at TP, with almost no problems. I refresh the home page, but the comment counts are always much lower than current when you open the thread, that’s about my biggest worry so far.

    In Chrome, if you block third party cookies, you don’t get very many. Go to ‘Options’, then to ‘Under the Hood’, and click ‘Content Settings’. Make sure the ‘Block all third party cookies without exception’ has a check in the box, and you should be able to limit the cookies to the sites you visit, and not include all the ads on the pages.

    I had to bug out a while ago, thanks for all the help on the Pilotshark’s comment. This Hallowdega race is getting over quickly, they just now had the first real wreck.

  30. Just noticed, over on TP, that the word can be typed as it is commonly spelled –
    this is our own illustrious butterfly typing the word:

    Zooey Today 11:27 AM in reply to StemCellChild
    Depending on others to do your homework must be why you’re so fucking stupid.

  31. (the BH clip)

    pachy, my how times have changed – that is the perfect definition of a ‘modern’ day repiggie or better yet, a ‘teabagger’.

  32. Back from work, the grand kids are done trick or treating so I am going to introduce the little monsters to Wallace and Grommit while I make spaghetti.

    Charging for snot? I guess trolls would be a good market.

  33. Zooey,
    Start a warm shower and when the humidity is beyond discomfort, enter with a wash cloth. Soak washcloth and blow snot into it. Rinse washcloth and then inhale water from washcloth into nasal passages (not into lungs) and blow snot out again. Wash, rinse and dry, repeat in morning. After that use nasal saline solution (¼ tsp salt to ¼ cup of H2O) and tissues until illness goes away.
    You may still feel like shit, but at least you should be able to breathe. I learned that treatment from Grandma.

  34. Saw this on the Ed Show Halloween Special:

    Even More Tension In 6th District Race

    In a race already fractured by record spending and personal attacks, 6th District Republican Congresswoman Michele Bachmann on Friday is deploying a new weapon — she’s playing the mother card.

    On Friday, residents in the 6th district began receiving a mailing that’s a harshly-worded open letter from Bachmann’s mother Jean LaFave.

    In the letter, paid for by the Bachmann campaign and picturing LaFave standing with Bachmann, she calls Tarryl Clark “hypocritical disgrace.”

    “I have never seen a candidate for higher office stoop as low as you,” LaFave writes, “with your false and vulgar attacks.”

    Most upsetting, she says, is the Clark television ad aimed at seniors.

    LaFave writes: “You shamelessly used Michele’s voice and photo in one of your ads to claim she wants to destroy Social Security.”

    Clark is sharpening her attacks on Bachmann, describing her as a ‘bully’ more interested in her national fame than Minnesota.

    In a terse statement, the Clark campaign said: “When someone stands up to bullies like Michele Bachmann, they (the bullies) often go running to their moms. Bachmann knows her position on Social Security is indefensible. That’s why she’s spending an astounding $9 million lying about Tarryl’s record — and her own record. Voters deserve better.”

  35. Just found out that the fundy that is running on the Repub ticket for my state legislative district is a secret Taliban. He won’t let his wife and daughters wear shorts in the summer because they need to keep their legs covered. Yikes! What a creep.

  36. Just got off the phone with my State legislator and he told me that there is someone from the DCCC making phone calls for him. She is calling the “unlikely” voter, the one that is NOT included in the polls, and she is getting a very positive response. Hopefully Americans are waking up to the fact that voting is important.

  37. Rachel’s ♪ wearing ♫ kitty ♪ ears!

    And black sneakers with orange stripes and laces.

    Easy there House, you’ll strain somethin’.

    (she may be wearing the Orange and Black -secretly rooting for the G’s. Rachel grew up in the Bay Area)


    Hooda, what a wonderful Papa you are – introducing them to Wallace and Grommit. I’ll have a bit of Wensleydale!

  38. A bit sad – I live in a locked facility (no not that kind of facility. I have my sanity and I’m not in prison. Well that’s what they keep telling me as they hand me one blue and two white pills).

    Not one “trick or treater”. I’m not used to this – I really enjoy seeing the kids dressed up – especially the originality of ‘home-made’ costumes.

  39. Bit of a sad Halloween here too. We wanted to hand out candy in my mom’s neighborhood (at my own house I’ve had one trick or treater in 25 years, and I had to call them and tell them to come over). Almost no families participated, so few children came down our street. I guess I’ll have to eat all this left over candy.

  40. OIMF, you are pretty rural, though, aren’t you?


    gummitch, not certain who you root for but I do wish there could be co-winners. The Texas fans are so exuberant and they are really surprisingly polite as far as Texans go.

    Thank goodness I missed listening to the beginning – understand the Bush criminal clan threw out the first pitch.

    We’ll see if the G’s can get ‘er done tomorrow.

  41. I’m rural, but mom’s house is in town. It used to be a great halloween neighborhood. Tonight we had neither givers or receivers. I reckon the economy caused the givers to not participate, I don’t know what happened to the receivers.

  42. That is a bit sad OIMF.
    Growing up – there never was all the ‘buying stuff’ – candy or costume. Home-made costumes and the goodies were either home-made or the father’s used to work for places like Carnation dairy – and you’d get ice-cream bar (a rare treat); one fellow was an engineer who each year had a special way of distributing pennies: like a plastic pumpkin whose mouth would open, when the door bell was pushed, and out came a few pennies.

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