Tag Archives: Fox news

Out of the Mouths of Babes… and Evildoers

Bush calls on all nations to end torture

Seriously… he did

I find listening to all this torture talk to be, well, torturous…  sort of like sitting through an entire airing of Fox & Friends in the morning.  The United States does not torture.  Instead, we simply redefine torturethe definition of torture then call it “enhanced interrogation techniques”.  At the same time, the Justice Department hires lawyers with no morals and directs them to provide legal rationale for breaking the law so that we can torture some terrorist into tying Al-Qaeda to Saddam Hussein, thereby obtaining “evidence” to justify an unjustifiable war.  Oh, and by the way, interrogation experts agree that torture doesn’t work… unless, of course, your intent is to get the prisoner to confess to whatever you (or The White House) want.

Torture is torture.  Waterboarding is torture.  It was defined as such a long time ago.  In fact, did you know waterboarding used to be a crime in the U.S. during pre-Bush times?  Of course you did, so why ignore the facts now?  According to a Washington Post article, after World War II the U.S. convicted several Japanese soldiers for waterboarding American and Allied prisoners of war (it was called the water cure by the Japanese).  As far back as the U.S. occupation of the Philippines after the 1898 Spanish-American War, U.S. soldiers were court-martialed for using the “water cure” to question Filipino guerrillas.  In 1983, federal prosecutors charged a Texas sheriff and three of his deputies with violating prisoners’ civil rights by forcing confessions through the use of waterboarding.

Whether you call them enhanced interrogation techniques OR freedom tickles,  it doesn’t matter.  This shouldn’t even enter into the debate, but the Right Wing hawks are doing a good job of keeping it in the forefront.  They specialize in scaring the shit out of the public in order to get what they want.  But the question that needs to be answered is, torture-with-bush11“Did the Bush Administration break the law by using torture?” Unfortunately, I have a feeling the Bush Administration is guilty of far greater crimes than torture. Torture was just a tool in the campaign to falsify and exploit 9/11 so that fearful Americans would be bamboozled into a mission that had nothing to do with Al-Qaeda.  The lying about Iraq remains the original sin from which flows much of the Bush White House’s illegality [quote from Frank Rich New York Times Op-Ed] .  But let’s at least call for further investigation; otherwise, we’re most certainly setting a precedent making lawful what has always been unlawful [from rogerhollander.wordpress.com].

Anyway, I can’t count how many times I recall President G.W. Bush telling the nation and the rest of the world that the United States does not torture.  But his statement on International Day in Support of Torture Victims in 2003 was, in retrospect, disingenuous at best. [re-printed below – source is HERE]

So all you holier-than-thou neo-cons out there who think it’s all of a sudden “ok” to torture “those people” should ask yourself, “Who would Jesus torture?” Interestingly enough, this Pew Research Center poll indicates the Jesus crowd is more than willing to support the use of torture.  Note to self:  Never EVER get picked up by a religious dog-catcher.

WAG THE DOGWe bark… you decide!

(Statement on International Day in Support of Torture Victims)

Bush Calls Torture “an Affront to Human Dignity Everywhere”

President Bush says torture anywhere is an affront to human dignity everywhere, and the United States is committed to building a world where human rights are respected and protected by the rule of law.

In a statement issued on United Nations International Day in Support of Victims of Torture June 26, the president called on all governments to join in prohibiting, investigating and prosecuting all acts of torture and in undertaking to prevent other cruel and unusual punishment.

Following is the text of Bush’s statement:
(begin text)

THE WHITE HOUSE
Office of the Press Secretary
June 26, 2003

STATEMENT BY THE PRESIDENT

United Nations International Day in Support of Victims of Torture

Today, on the United Nations International Day in Support of Victims of Torture, the United States declares its strong solidarity with torture victims across the world. Torture anywhere is an affront to human dignity everywhere. We are committed to building a world where human rights are respected and protected by the rule of law.

Freedom from torture is an inalienable human right. The Convention Against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment, ratified by the United States and more than 130 other countries since 1984, forbids governments from deliberately inflicting severe physical or mental pain or suffering on those within their custody or control. Yet torture continues to be practiced around the world by rogue regimes whose cruel methods match their determination to crush the human spirit. Beating, burning, rape, and electric shock are some of the grisly tools such regimes use to terrorize their own citizens. These despicable crimes cannot be tolerated by a world committed to justice.

Notorious human rights abusers, including, among others, Burma, Cuba, North Korea, Iran, and Zimbabwe, have long sought to shield their abuses from the eyes of the world by staging elaborate deceptions and denying access to international human rights monitors. Until recently, Saddam Hussein used similar means to hide the crimes of his regime. With Iraq’s liberation, the world is only now learning the enormity of the dictator’s three decades of victimization of the Iraqi people. Across the country, evidence of Baathist atrocities is mounting, including scores of mass graves containing the remains of thousands of men, women, and children and torture chambers hidden inside palaces and ministries. The most compelling evidence of all lies in the stories told by torture survivors, who are recounting a vast array of sadistic acts perpetrated against the innocent. Their testimony reminds us of their great courage in outlasting one of history’s most brutal regimes, and it reminds us that similar cruelties are taking place behind the closed doors of other prison states.

The United States is committed to the world-wide elimination of torture and we are leading this fight by example. I call on all governments to join with the United States and the community of law-abiding nations in prohibiting, investigating, and prosecuting all acts of torture and in undertaking to prevent other cruel and unusual punishment. I call on all nations to speak out against torture in all its forms and to make ending torture an essential part of their diplomacy. I further urge governments to join America and others in supporting torture victims’ treatment centers, contributing to the UN Fund for the Victims of Torture, and supporting the efforts of non-governmental organizations to end torture and assist its victims.

No people, no matter where they reside, should have to live in fear of their own government. Nowhere should the midnight knock foreshadow a nightmare of state-commissioned crime. The suffering of torture victims must end, and the United States calls on all governments to assume this great mission.

(end text)

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Here Comes An American Patriot!

Nope.  It’s actually just a huge douchebag in a golf cart…

WAG THE DOG Quiz of the Day:

What is the best way to show your patriotism for America and support of the troops?

A) Give up golfing (or at least SAY you have given up golf and hope nobody takes your picture while you’re on the tee box with your daddy).

B) Call George W. Bush a “huge douchebag” as often as possible… or just say nothing and let Dubya speak for you.

Words matter…

Charges of plagiarism reach hypocritical levels

In other news… 

Here’s Bill O’Reilly (Fox News tool) calling it like he sees it.  Bravo, Bill!

Results of Media Bias Poll Cause Man to Nearly Shit Himself

Plus, Fox News Can’t Stop Stroking Itself (or this poll)

Fairfield, CT  – The results of a poll conducted by the Sacred Heart University Polling Institute show a majority of Americans don’t trust media news reporting.  Go figure!  Following is an excerpt from the university’s January 8th press release: 

AMERICANS SLAM NEWS MEDIA ON BELIEVABILITY

…(the) poll found significantly declining percentages of Americans saying they believe all or most of media news reporting. In the current national poll, just 19.6% of those surveyed could say they believe all or most news media reporting. This is down from 27.4% in 2003. Just under one-quarter, 23.9%, in 2007 said they believe little or none of reporting while 55.3% suggested they believe some media news reporting.

The perception is growing among Americans that the news media attempts to influence public opinion – from 79.3% strongly or somewhat agreeing in 2003 to 87.6% in 2007. And, 86.0% agreed (strongly or somewhat) that the news media attempts to influence public policies – up from 76.7% in 2003. By four-to-one margins, Americans surveyed see The New York Times (41.9% to 11.8%) and National Public Radio (40.3% to 11.2%) as mostly or somewhat liberal over mostly or somewhat conservative. By a three-to-one margin, Americans see news media journalists and broadcasters (45.4% to 15.7%) as mostly or somewhat liberal over mostly or somewhat conservative. And, by a two-to-one margin, Americans see CNN (44.9% to 18.4%) and MSNBC (38.8% to 15.8%) as mostly or somewhat liberal over mostly or somewhat conservative.

Just Fox News was seen as mostly and somewhat conservative (48.7%) over mostly or somewhat liberal (22.3%). The most trusted national TV news organizations, for accurate reporting, in declining order included: Fox News (27.0%), CNN (14.6%), and NBC News (10.90%).  These were followed by ABC News (7.0%), local news (6.9%), CBS News (6.8%) MSNBC (4.0%), PBS News (3.0%), CNBC (0.6%) and CBN (0.5%).In 2003, CNN led Fox News on “trust most for accurate reporting” 23.8% to 14.6%.

Not surprisingly, the Fox News Channel (FNC) decided to report a snippet of this press release on tonight’s Special Report with Brit Hume.  Sitting in for Brit Hume brit_hume_fnc.png(who was hopefully taking some time off to get a much needed jowl tuck) was FNC’s Chief White House Correspondent, Bret Baier.  In Mr. Baier’s 30-second report, he stated the fact that American’s tend to believe there’s a liberal bias in the news media.  Then he presented a chart containing a list of the most trusted national TV news organizations, lead by Fox News.  No other information was provided, nor were the actual poll numbers analysed in depth.  Why bother, right?

The most trusted national TV news organizations, for accurate reporting, in declining order included: Fox News (27.0%), CNN (14.6%), and NBC News (10.90%).  These were followed by ABC News (7.0%), local news (6.9%), CBS News (6.8%) MSNBC (4.0%), PBS News (3.0%), CNBC (0.6%) and CBN (0.5%).

At the precise moment of FNC’s story about the media bias poll, a lovable 39 year old Minneapolis man was running walking briskly on a treadmill in his basement while monitoring the FNC for, ironically, bias reporting.  As soon as the words, “most trusted national news organization” and “Fox News” were used together in a sentence by Mr. Baier, the Minneapolis man bolted from the treadmill after feeling what he described as “an uncomfortable and  uncontrollable twitching in my butt that made me think I was about to shit myself.”  Luckily, a bathroom was nearby, and the man survived the ordeal without incident.

Thinking the man running walking briskly on his treadmill was on to something, Wag the Dog conducted our own Internet search to see if, in fact, a Sacred Heart University Polling Institute actually exists.  It does.  We found the poll results and studied them in depth and came to the following conclusions:

1) There’s still hope for America because, according to this poll, most people recognize there’s media bias in news reporting.  And that’s a good thing. 

2) Because only 19.6% of those surveyed could say they believe all or most news media reporting, maybe the average TV news viewer isn’t as ignorant as originally thought?  Then again, there are still quite a few people out there who have a more favorable impression of George Bush (33%)  than they do of the news media.  And that’s a scary thing.

3) PBS News received a 3% favorability score in the “accurate rating” category, which means it’s highly likely that fewer than 25 of the 800 people surveyed have actually watched a PBS News broadcast.  Studies show PBS viewers tend to be well-educated, while cable news viewers are… well, let’s just say “not as educated as” PBS viewers… so one must conclude that those highbrow PBS News viewers have no clue they are being lied to.  Wake up, Smarty Pants!  

This poll will likely do little more than shine a dim spotlight on the media bias that has plagued America for quite some time.  On the other hand, Fox News will undoubtedly continue spewing cherry-picked results that make themselves look good… even though a 27% favorability rating is hardly something to brag about, yet just watch Fox shamelessly do it.  But, alas, this spotlight will eventually fade, and the media outlets will continue lying to us on behalf of the six behemoth companies that own them.  And despite the fact there are multiple polls conducted each year that show the general public doesn’t trust the media, CNN will keep marketing itself as the most trusted name in news, Fox News will still claim to be a fair and balanced new source and a lovable 39 year old man in Minneapolis will continue nearly shitting himself on a daily basis as long as he insists on watching monitoring the Fox News Channel.