Right Thinking From The Left Coast
We didn't lose the game; we just ran out of time. - Vince Lombardi

Friday, May 21, 2004

Racist Limeys
by Lee

America is, as every good European can tell you, a land of immigrants that are mistreated by an institutionally racist government.  This article proves that notion true.  Or, it would, if the article wasn’t talking about the UK.

The Metropolitan Police are guilty of “institutional racism” in the way officers stop and search black and Asian people, a damning report concluded yesterday. The “racial bias” of white officers is the core reason why members of ethnic minorities are disproportionately stopped in the street, said the study by the Met’s police authority.

Black people are eight times, and Asian people five times, more likely to be stopped and searched than white people, national figures show.

The findings by the Metropolitan Police Authority, which oversees the running of the force, are a blow to the Met and echo the 1999 inquiry report into the murder of Stephen Lawrence. The authority said Sir William Macpherson’s finding of institutional racism within the Met persists and the culture within the force was reinforcing racial stereotyping.

While acknowledging that enormous efforts have been made by the Met to improve race relations, the report concluded: “Institutional racism - as reflected in the policies, priorities and practices (or lack thereof) of the Metropolitan Police Service - continue to be dominant factors in both permitting and causing disproportionality in stop-and-search rates.”

It added: “Racial bias and stereotyping in individual police officers’ behaviour continues to be a significant determining factor in disproportionality.”

I can’t wait for the UK to get its own reparations movement.

Posted by Lee on 05/21/04 at 10:17 PM in Europe and the UK  • (4) TrackbacksPermalink

Wedding Bells
by Lee

We’ve all heard the stories for the past couple of days about the Iraqi wedding party that was supposedly attacked by US forces.  With the Abu Ghraib scandal still fresh in everyone’s minda the onus has fallen on the US military to disprove every accusation the world media feels like laying upon it.  So, under those circumstances, it’s good to still see that the US Marine Corps can still produce men with a set of balls.

Major General James Mattis, commander of the 1st Marine Division, was scathing of those who suggested a wedding party had been hit. “How many people go to the middle of the desert ... to hold a wedding 80 miles (130km) from the nearest civilisation? These were more than two dozen military-age males. Let’s not be naive.”

When reporters asked him about footage on Arabic television of a child’s body being lowered into a grave, he replied: “I have not seen the pictures but bad things happen in wars. I don’t have to apologise for the conduct of my men.”

You bet your ass, general.  Semper fi.

Posted by Lee on 05/21/04 at 10:10 PM in War on Terror/Axis of Evil  • (0) TrackbacksPermalink

USA is Nazi
by Lee

Sorry for the light blogging today.  For now, tide yourself over with this brilliant hate mail I received over at MOOREWATCH.

Posted by Lee on 05/21/04 at 07:20 PM in Reader Mail/Hate Mail  • (1) TrackbacksPermalink

Blood Money
by Lee

In this post my MOOREWATCH co-creator Jim asks Moore fans if they think Mikey is a profiteer.

Moore is using footage of the parents of dead soldiers, as well as footage of soldiers in Iraq, among other things, in Fahrenheit 9/11.

Doesn’t that make him a war profiteer? Why is he making money off Iraq? Isn’t that why Halliburton is wrong? Doesn’t he criticize those who would profit from war?

Yet here he is, about to pocket huge sums of money from war. Interesting, isn’t it?

A reader sends in this link to the trivia section on the Schindler’s List page on IMDb.

Steven Spielberg was not paid for this film. He refused to accept a salary citing that it would be “blood money.”

Thankfully, for left-wing “peace” activists everywhere, Michael Moore has no such objection.

Update: Reader Mishu points out the following fact from the same trivia page.

At his insistence, all royalties and residuals from this film that would normally have gone to director Steven Spielberg instead are given to the Shoah Foundation, which records and preserves written and videotaped testimonies of Holocaust survivors.

At his insistence, all royalties and residuals that would normally go to director Michael Moore will indeed to go Michael Moore.

Posted by Lee on 05/21/04 at 12:48 AM in Michael Mooron  • (2) TrackbacksPermalink

Not-So-Secret
by Lee

Mikey has posted images from three exclusive scenes from his latest lie-filled crapfest film.  Take a look at the bottom of the three.

image

The caption below the image reads “Michael Moore is stopped by the Secret Service outside the Saudi Arabian embassy in Washington, D.C.” A reader sends in this email, which is a copy of one he sent to Michael Moore.

While I was viewing the site to see the latest lies that you are putting up to trick your stupid liberal audience, I came across an error that just irks me.

When showing those two exclusive screenshots of Mr. Moore’s new film, you put a caption on the bottom one that is totally incorrect.

Mr. Moore is not being stopped by the Secret Service.  Apparently you’ve never seen a member of the Secret Service.  That man standing infront of Mr. Moore is no more than a security guard at the Embassy.

My Uncle was member of the Secret Service for George Bush Sr. and I saw the Secret Service agents that travel with President George W. Bush, they don’t look anything like balding, short, middle-aged men.

Now I know you put that in there to make it look like another conspiracy that the evil administration is trying to shut down Mr. Moore’s projects, but if you’re going to lie, at least try to make it realistic next time.  Thanks.

Mikey doesn’t even have to come up with realistic lies.  Why should he?  The last time he fabriacted reality he won an Oscar.

Posted by Lee on 05/21/04 at 12:39 AM in Michael Mooron  • (0) TrackbacksPermalink

Big Fat Stupid White Man
by Lee

I’ve know about this for a while now, so I’m glad to see the secret is finally out.

“MICHAEL Moore Is a Big Fat Stupid White Man.” That’s the title of an upcoming tome from ReganBooks by Jason Clarke and David T. Hardy, the creators of two Web sites devoted to exposing the filmmaker’s hypocrisy, moorelies.com and mooreexposed.com. “Moore shows the greatest disdain for that which he actually is . . . a very rich, pasty white American male,” the authors say. Watching Moore spinning statistics in “Bowling for Columbine” and “Dude, Where’s My Country?” spurred the authors to ask, “Dude, where’s your integrity.” The book, due in July, will expose his use of camera tricks, manipulated facts and spliced speeches. “Post-war filmmakers gave us the documentary, Rob Reiner gave us the mockumentary and Moore initiated a third genre, the crockumentary.”

Be sure and buy a copy.  Or buy two, and give one to your liberal friend.

Posted by Lee on 05/21/04 at 12:30 AM in Michael Mooron  • (1) TrackbacksPermalink

Plagiarizing for Columbine
by Lee

Earlier today I blogged on a new effort to get Michael Moore to forget making millions of dollars for his wealthy corporate media backers and simply Release the Movie.  Well, it seems that someone beat him to it.

MICHAEL Moore’s anti-Bush film “Fahrenheit 9/11” isn’t even original. Two years ago, “9/11: The Road to Tyranny,” a real documentary by Alex Jones, had most of the “facts” Moore uses in his scatter-shot diatribe. Jones, who is less interested in making money than the self-aggrandizing Moore, released his film for free on his Web site www.infowars.com, where it drew legions of new fans, including producer Curt Johnson, who is hiring Jones as a consultant on a political action thriller titled “Wake Up.” [Emphasis added]

This is exactly what the Release the Movie campaign is all about.  Unfortunately, making millions and millions of dollars is what Michael Moore is all about.  This also isn’t the first time that Moore has plagiarized the work of others and passed it off as his own. 

Just how did Moore get so many of his facts wrong? Lazy cribbing from media outlets and the Internet seems the most likely culprit, as evidenced by a four-page list of allegedly dubious policy accomplishments by President Bush, including cutting funds from libraries and appointing former business executives to regulatory posts. All but one of the 48 accusations appear in the same order and with very similar phrasing to a list that has been printed this winter (but before Moore’s book came out) on liberal Web sites and, according to Dr. David A. Sprintzen (often wrongly cited, though not by Moore, as its author), was circulating via e-mail last summer. Belying a lack of original research, Moore even apes many of the negative characterizations of individuals, calling judicial appointee Terrence Boyle a “civil rights opponent,” for example (the list refers to him as a “foe of civil rights"), with absolutely no context for why exactly Boyle deserves that moniker (one certainly has to wonder whether Moore himself knows).

Curiously, Moore cites no source for this list. He only notes that readers “can keep track of what Bush did and does during his administration” by reading Molly Ivins’ syndicated column and the Web sites smirkingchimp.com and bushwatch.com. The latter two did print the list, but not until this winter, well after Moore wrote his book, though before it was published.

Michael Moore, always standing up for the little guy, unless he can get rich by ripping off their work product.

Posted by Lee on 05/21/04 at 12:08 AM in Michael Mooron  • (0) TrackbacksPermalink

Wide Open
by Lee

There’s a new vacancy on the Watcher’s Council over at Watcher of Weasels.  If you’re a blogger, pop on over and get all the skinny.

Posted by Lee on 05/21/04 at 12:02 AM in Etcetera  • (0) TrackbacksPermalink

Thursday, May 20, 2004

Release the Movie
by Lee

Over the past week I’ve gotten about a million emails from readers regarding Michael Moore.  I’ll be blogging more on the subject tonight, but for now I wanted to point out a new project that we at MOOREWATCH have become peripherally involved with.  Which is more important to Moore, his message that is being silenced by the Vast Right-Wing Media Conspiracy, or making his millions of dollars and enriching his wealthy corporate backers?  Why doesn’t Mikey just Release the Movie?

More on moron Moore later.

Posted by Lee on 05/20/04 at 05:33 PM in Michael Mooron  • (0) TrackbacksPermalink

Wednesday, May 19, 2004

The Cost of Health Care
by Lee

Here’s the latest attempt to somehow keep the ever-spiraling costs of free British health care under control.

Westcountry doctors are to be offered payments of 100 for every patient they keep out of hospital, in a controversial drive to cut waiting lists.

The scheme, being pioneered by Torbay Primary Care Trust, is designed to encourage family doctors to be more proactive in dealing with the care of elderly patients and those with complex long-term health problems.

Supporters claim the initiative, which is due to begin within the next few days, will improve patient care and cut “unplanned” admissions to hospital by up to 15 per cent. The scheme, which could also slash primary care trust (PCT) bills for hospital treatment, has already attracted national attention, with around 40 PCTs across the country now considering similar initiatives.

But concerns have been raised that incentive payments to doctors could be seen as unethical and damage trust with patients who might feel clinical decisions were being influenced in an inappropriate way. The Torbay scheme will offer GP practices 75 for every patient with a chronic illness for whom they develop a detailed care plan. They will receive an extra 25 if the patient does not have to go to hospital.

You might be surprised to learn this, but here in America we have a system very similar to this one, and it’s already in place.  It’s been in place for hundreds of years.  It’s called the free market, and its power to keep costs down are unmatched by any government program in history.

See, in the UK everyone is entitled to free health care.  Therefore, every time someone gets a sniffle, they go to the doctor.  Why not, it’s free.  And their doctor might send them to be admitted at a hospital.  Why not, it’s free.  Costs are increasing, and waiting lists are growing, all because there is a finite amount of resources and an infinate demand for them.  This is the very nature of systems where prices and/or availability are artificially controlled.  (Housing shortages in rent controlled areas are another great example.)

In America people, like with any other expense, weigh the costs to the benefits of going to the doctor.  Is it worth paying a $10 co-pay (or more) to get seen for my sniffle?  Is it worth paying $30 (or more) for a prescription to take care of this sniffle?  Or should I just take the day off work, swallow a couple of aspirin, and stay in bed for free?

It is this cost/benefit analysis on the part of the consumer that keeps people away from the doctor in America.  You can say whatever you like about how heartless this is, but the fact is that if the goal is to keep costs down this is the best way of doing it. 

So, in a novel example of thinking outside the box, the British are trying to do a short of top-down version of the free market incentive.  Since they can’t to anything to decrease the demand for services, they are trying to financially incentivise the decision-makers in the British system (the doctors) into not sending people into the hospital.  The goal?  To reduce costs and burden on the health care infrastructure.

Say what you like about the benefits of socialized health care, but as with all human endeavors one thing is plainly clear.  When you tell someone that something is (a) their right, and (b) at no cost to them, they will use it at every concevable opportunity.  And in a world with finite resources this is not a good thing.

Posted by Lee on 05/19/04 at 05:44 PM in Health Care  • (0) TrackbacksPermalink

The Show Must Go On
by Lee

My father instilled in me a healthy work ethic, and if he were here next to me he’d be telling me to get off my ass and start blogging again.  To tell you the truth, I’ve really missed blogging these past few days.  Like many things in life, you never really appreciate them until they aren’t there any more.

Posted by Lee on 05/19/04 at 05:39 PM in Etcetera  • (0) TrackbacksPermalink

Tuesday, May 18, 2004

Meet the Press
by Lee

Here’s a link to the press release about my dad.  It was picked up by a number of news outlets, including the Boston Business Journal, which used a charming euphemism in its headline: AbioCor patient dies as family pulls plug.

I’m surprised they were able to restrain themselves from saying that he “croaked” or “kicked the bucket.” What a vulgar choice of words for a headline of this nature.

Posted by Lee on 05/18/04 at 07:56 PM in Etcetera  • (1) TrackbacksPermalink

Monday, May 17, 2004

The Glad Shout
by Lee

A friend of my dad’s sent this over.  I had never heard it before, but I really liked it.

I am standing upon the seashore. A ship at my side spreads her white sails to the morning breeze and starts for the blue ocean. She is an object of beauty and strength, and I stand and watch until at last she hangs like a speck of white cloud just where the sea and sky come down to mingle with each other. Then someone at my side says, “There she goes!”

Gone where? Gone from my sight ... that is all. She is just as large in mast and hull and spar as she was when she left my side and just as able to bear her load of living freight to the place of destination. Her diminished size is in me, not in her. And just at the moment when someone at my side says, “There she goes!” there are other eyes watching her coming and their voices ready to take up the glad shouts “Here she comes!”

Henry Van Dyke
A Parable of Immortality

Posted by Lee on 05/17/04 at 03:27 PM in Etcetera  • (0) TrackbacksPermalink

Sunday, May 16, 2004

Requiem
by Lee

My father died today.  He was 63 years old.  He is survived by a wife and two sons.  At his passing he was surrounded by people who loved him.

I face the prospect of life without my father with a large degree of fear.  As much as tried to make him realize, I don’t think he ever truly understood how much I loved him.  As so often happens with fathers and sons, my relationship with him was rocky from my mid-teens through to my mid-twenties.  But as I grew into an adult I began to see the wisdom in his words and thoughts, and for the rest of my life when I evaluate the kind of man I have become he will be the standard against which I compare myself.  He set the bar high indeed, and I only hope that one day I have a child of my own who loves me half as much as I loved him.

Posted by Lee on 05/16/04 at 08:16 PM in Etcetera  • (1) TrackbacksPermalink

Friday, May 14, 2004

Where I Be?
by Lee

Sorry for the lack of posting.  Will explain later.

Posted by Lee on 05/14/04 at 10:12 PM in Etcetera  • (0) TrackbacksPermalink
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