Running Scared: Observations of a Former Republican
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"Losing my faith in humanity ... one neocon at a time."

Sunday, February 27, 2005

The Blog Has MOVED

posted by Jazz at 2/27/2005 01:27:00 PM


The time has come to bid a fond farewell to Blogger. Running Scared has moved to "better quarters on campus" as the Ghostbusters once said. Our new address is as follows:

Please update your bookmarks, blogrolls, hate e-mail lists, etc. And, as a favor, if you would be willing to help spread the word through your own outlets to make this transition as smooth and painless as possible, we would be very much in your debt.

The reasons for our move and a lot of information about our new hosting platform, PowerBlogs, are detailed in our welcome message at the new site. Noting the domain name above, I would also like to take this brief opportunity to thank the crap filled, please may you burn in eternal fire, cyber squatters who are sitting on runningscared dot com. DIE CYBERSQUATTERS, DIE! No, we're not paying you a thousand dollars for a domain name that cost you $9.95 for a stupid blog. There is a special place in hell awaiting cybersquatters right next to child molesters and that guy who shot the pope.

I apologize for any confusion or inconvenience caused by the shift, but I hope that you will enjoy your reading experience at the new site even more than you have here. We value every one of our visitors, even the right wingers who hate us. (As long as they are civil.) And we look forward to seeing you in the future at our new home.


Jazz and the Running Scared Team

Hypocrisy thy name is the Religious Right

posted by Ron Beasley at 2/27/2005 11:21:00 AM


If there was ever any doubt that the Radical Religious Right organizations were simply fronts for the Rovian Republican machine rather than the keepers of "moral values" that doubt has been eliminated by their silence on the Jeff Gannon affair.
Why have the 'traditional family values' folks erected a wall of silence around the Gannon scandal?
They were livid over SpongeBob Square Pants' participation in a video advocating tolerance, and fuming about Buster the Bunny's visit to a lesbian household. So where's the outrage from the Christian right over the Jeff Gannon Affair? Despite a chunk of time having passed since the Gannon Affair was first uncovered, Christian right organizations are still cloaked in silence. As of February 24, there wasn't any news about the Gannon Affair available on the Web sites of Focus on the Family, the Family Research Council, the American Family Association, or the Traditional Values Coalition. As best as I could determine, no special alerts about the Gannon Affair have been issued; and no campaigns have been launched to get to the bottom of the matter.
Bill Berkowitz called Dr. James Dobson's Focus on the Family, The Family Research Council, The Traditional Values Coalition, The Free Congress Foundation, Town Hall, American Family Association, Charisma News Service and the Christian Response Network. He received no comment or did not get a call back from any of them. A wall of silence.
Unable to speak with representatives from Focus on the Family, the Family Research Council and the Traditional Values Coalition, I turned to Joe Conn of American United for Separation of Church and State and John Aravosis, the creator of Americablog.

In a telephone interview, Conn said he wasn't surprised that there hasn't been any response from Christian right organizations because "The religious right is pretty much a team player when it comes to the Bush Administration. Unless it's an issue like same-sex marriage -- a core issue of their agenda -- they will give the president a pass."

"Clearly this is an example of the religious right's hypocrisy," Conn point out. "If it was Bill Clinton they would be in total uproar."

Via e-mail, I asked Aravosis why he thought the Christian right was being silent about the Gannon Affair.

"Because they're hypocrites," he wrote in an e-mail. "They know this scandal is hurting Bush and they put politics ahead of their God. That's how petty and un-Christian they are."
"Morale Values" NO, political hackery YES; that's the real Religious Right.

Move over Chicken Dance, Do the Numa Numa

posted by Jazz at 2/27/2005 11:02:00 AM


In a way, I kind of feel sorry for this kid. It's the story of a young man who put a somewhat embarrassing (I suppose) video of himself up on the internet and was instantly launched into national fame in what might be considered to be a less than flattering light. He's doing what he calls the "Numa Numa Dance."
Here, then, is the cautionary tale of Gary Brolsma, 19, amateur videographer and guy from New Jersey, who made the grave mistake of placing on the Internet a brief clip of himself dancing along to a Rumanian pop song. Even in the bathroom mirror, Mr. Brolsma's performance could only be described as earnest but painful.
Now, let's be clear. This isn't anything pornographic, offense, or even controversial. Mr. Brolsma isn't naked, or doing anything sexual, etc. His video simply shows him sitting at his computer in front of a camera lip synching to a foreign pop song and doing a silly dance. In fact, I'd go so far as to say that the guy has some talent. Lip synching, particularly to a foreign language song, isn't all that easy. And he combines it with some really amusing facial expressions, arched eyebrows, and a kind of "arms in the air" flailing kind of dance. You can see the video here.

When I looked at it, I laughed. And it wasn't some kind of "oh, look at the idiot... let's make fun of him" laugh. I was honestly amused. Seriously, I've seen so-called "professional" comedians doing far worse. This guy's one piece of schtick is ten times funnier than anything that awful Carrot Top has ever done. Joe Gandelman, guest posting at Dean's World, has some additional observations on this guy's plight, and both he and the commenters there seem to also treat the young man in a very sympathetic fashion.

But, none the less, the young man is embarrassed and, as it says in the linked article, has stopped taking press calls and retreated to seclusion in his parents' home. I suppose the Times' lede is correct in calling it a "cautionary tale", though I still don't see what he has to be so ashamed of. Maybe I'm just as much of a geek as he is. But the point is, you have to be careful when you put any sort of personal material out on the web. It never goes away. For example, how sorry do you think this poor bastard is that he ever put this picture on his computer?

You take certain chances when you share anything over the web. In a non-damaging example, last year we took some shots of me at the "America hating, non-troop supporting pinko" rally, and put them on the blog, including this one. It took Ron from MEJ all of fifteen seconds to create this picture out of it and send it to me. (To be perfectly fair, Ron did not publish that picture. He e-mailed it.) But I was the one who put it on the web, so it's now there for perpetuity. If I was going to be embarrassed about it, I wouldn't or shouldn't have done it in the first place.

So be careful when you step foot out of your door and onto the winding paths of the "internets", as our preznit would say. And if you run into the Numa Numa dancer, tell him to keep his chin up. It wasn't that bad. He should do Letterman.

Growing Up Rove

posted by Jazz at 2/27/2005 09:10:00 AM


It's become the new fad among Bushies to downplay and scoff at any mention of Bush's Brain (a.k.a Karl Rove) by saying that "Democrats blame everything that ever happens in politics on Rove." In a particularly insightful column this Sunday, Dave Rossie counters that there's a pretty good reason for that.

While it is true that Democrats like to blame Rove for anything that smacks of political chicanery, it is equally true that there are reasons for it. As writer Nicholas Lemann noted in a 2003 New Yorker profile of Rove, politician-watchers in Texas tell a story about Rove bugging his own office on the eve of an election and then calling in the news media to proclaim his "discovery" of that treacherous act, which served to distract attention from his client/candidate's shortcomings.

Rove or one of his henchman is a suspect in the outing of CIA agent Valerie Plame, and the disgraceful smear campaign against John McCain during the 2000 Republican presidential primary, when South Carolina voters were told that McCain committed treason while a prisoner of war in Vietnam and that he had fathered a child by a black prostitute, also bore what Lemann called "The Mark of Rove."

This is another winning piece by Rossi. He starts off by mentioning that New York congressman Maurice Hinchey (who is from up near my neck of the woods) recently aired his suspicions that Rove was involved in the planting of the fake "Rathergate" documents. Then, with tongue planted firmly in cheek, he takes Hinchey to task for it.

Hinchey offered no proof for his allegation, nor did he pretend to have any. Now what way is that for an elected official to behave in public? Suppose our president and vice president had declared publicly that they had proof that Saddam Hussein had nuclear weapons and stockpiles of chemical and biological weapons by way of justifying an invasion of Iraq.

What? Oh. OK, well, that's different.

Give Rossi a read and check in with him regularly. I think you might like him.