Topic: Chasing the Zeitgeist
Lists: The 'Worst of All Time' Idea
Reacting to the list of this-just-couldn't-be-so items in A Meme Snowballs, chronicling the events that seem to show the Bush administration falling apart at the seams (or at the "seems"), Ric Erickson, editor of MetropoleParis, suggests it's time for Just Above Sunset exclusive. He suggests this press release:
Well, perhaps we won't go that far, as JAS does not have the resources of AOL and the Discovery Channel for such a contest. But it's an idea. (As for international renown, that is curious as there were an awful lot of unique logons in the last eight days from servers at idi.ntnu.no - the Norwegian University of Science and Technology - the Gløshaugen campus in Trondheim, Norway. Why?)
Anyway, one could start to work out list of folks who could be nominees. Over at Daily Kos, the proprietor, Kos himself, suggests top Republicans, as he points out The trifecta is complete - the Republican leadership in the Senate, House and White House are ALL officially under investigation.
He cites this on senate leader Frist:
What this about Kentucky Fried Chicken? Well, Kos posted that before the Associated Press on Saturday, September 24, reminded folks of a few more things:
But he called the trustee tell him to dump the stock he didn't know he had, just before the earnings report came out and the stock price sank like a rock? Well, it's just securities fraud, insider trading stuff. Only Martha Stewart goes to jail for such things. He doesn't make the "worst" list, although one might give him honorable mention for what he said on the floor of the senate a few months ago - reminding everyone that he was a doctor he said he watched an hour of heavily edited videotape of Terri Schiavo and he was certain that all the other doctors and the courts were wrong and she wasn't in a persistent vegetative state at all, and the federal government should rescue her in some way. Big federal crisis - Bush dropped everything and flew back from Texas on a Saturday night to deal with it (the woman's name was Terri, not Katrina). Everyone knows the story and what the autopsy showed. Frist is not the worst, just a little confused with the rules and the truth.
And Karl Rove, over at the White House? The Washington Post notes this:
Okay, the man may have, or may not have revealed the name of a covert CIA agent to six press people, and Robert Novak may have published it, and it may have published it and out her and her contact in danger and ruining years of intelligence work, just to get back at the woman's husband for embarrassing Bush - but none of the has been officially established. And is mentioned in the other item, the whole thing could be the work of John Bolton, our current UN ambassador. No one knows. This stuff in the Post just shows a man who helps big donors to the Republican party how to get out of paying any taxes if they incorporate offshore and steers big federal contracts their way. Standard stuff. Goes on in all governments. You expect such things. But Rove might be a nominee for other matters, long in the past - political dirty tricks. Ask John McCain, or ask his illegitimate back child by the cocaine addict that cost him the South Carolina primary six years ago, or ask Max Cleland, who somehow for a time was a supporter of the Islamic fundamentalists who want to kills us all. Rove might do.
Tom DeLay - the house Republican leader? Just the latest:
The man is ethically challenged. Does he go on "the worst" list? Maybe, but he wouldn't win.
Do we pick on Michael Brown, who resigned as head of FEMA? Old news. Do we pick on the new acting head of, the man who told us to be safe we should buy lots of duct tape and plastic sheeting? (Good comment here.) Nope. Too easy.
And why did the head of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) just resign? The Associated Press item here:
Yeah, and the administration appointed a veterinarian to take her place. But folks who leave don't make the list.
Maybe contest will have to wait to see how this works out - Time Magazine, Friday evening, September 23 opens a new, long article with this -
Well, the chickens are coming home to roost. This seems systematic, and approved. Someone approved it, or at the least, allowed it. It might be time to see who did, and at what level. We may get a candidate for "worst" after all. The president's abandonment of the legal ban on inhumane treatment of military detainees is the problem? Maybe so.
On the other hand, of this "Worst of All Time" contest is a matter of popular vote, there's this discussion of this story - about the vastly popular website where folks trade amateur, homemade hard pornography for photos sent by our guys in Iraq of the maimed and tortured and dead bodies of the locals over there. If these people vote too then all bets are off. To them, the Time scoop might elicit only one response. "So?" The casual torture of prisoners held by their unit was routine, well known at "varying levels of command," and directed by military intelligence personnel. "And your point is?"
To agree on what's "worst" one must agree on what the right thing to do is. This could be a problem. Well, the Army has started up a high-level criminal investigation. They'll let us know if they find themselves at fault for anything.
Meanwhile, not back at the ranch, the Washington Post on its front page on Saturday, September 24, says the president senses that things aren't going well and everyone is trying to help him regain his swagger.
That's why he's at Northern Command at Cheyenne Mountain (used to be NORAD), under miles of protective rock, at that old cold-war nerve center where we would have tracked incoming nukes from the USSR, should that have happened. But the Post says this:
His wife is on his case. William Kristol, of all people, is on his case. His people are saying, not for attribution, that he never was that smart.
Note this comment:
And even that has been in the press, although if you click on the link you might consider the source -
I did send this along to my friends, a bit of history. Take yourself back to late eighteenth century England. King George the Third, the man who "lost" the colonies in America:
Sounds familiar. That George, our George - either be a nominee for this hypothetical list.