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Back In The Saddle | blog.deanland.com

Back In The Saddle

Back in The Saddle

Well, not really the saddle, actually. Back at the keyboard is a better way to put it.

Well, similar to what Rush Limbaugh said when he came back on the radio this past Monday, AS I WAS SAYING, HERE I AM, BACK AGAIN. Except that I was gone for personal reasons of grief and some time of introspection.

Rush was gone to accomplish two things: detox from his addiction to controlled-substance pain-killer medication, and to figure out how the hell he and his lawyers will come up with an alibi for all the just-under-ten-grand withdrawals he made. Over $10K and the banks have to report it. So a bunch of just under $10K withdrawals add up to what is reported to be between $300,000 and $400,000. Or, as Limbaugh put it to his listeners, ìpocket change.î

Yeah, we should all have such deep pockets!

The World Gone Mad

Bush goes to the UK, is soundly booed, there are anti-war and anti-Bush demonstrations. And as a matter of course he is completely oblivious to it. There he goes, proving to the world that he is the very personification of the smug imperialist. Certain of his power and might, he remains completely and totally aloof, disinterested and not phased by or concerned with public opinion or outcry.

Meanwhile, terrorist bombings are taking place on a regular basis. Synagogues in Istanbul. British banks and target sites by the British Embassy. Worrisome stuff: this means that Al Queda (or whichever group it is) has the planning, the resources, and the patience and ability to stage these actions when they feel the timing is right. They are topical in their selection of targets.

But worry not ñ according to Dubya, he is winning the war on terrorism. Just ask him.

And all those attacks in Baghdad and elsewhere, all the guerilla efforts against the US invasion force in Iraq ñ makes Dubya proud of the great job he and his team have done in containing world order.

This guy is an embarrassment.

News Media: Odd Sense of Priority

Terrorist bombings all over. More bloodshed in Iraq, with Iraqis and US soldiers and those from the Coalition Forces in harmís way, some sacrificing their lives. Dubya across the water acting more royal and righteous than the Monarchy in place over there. FTAA conference in Miami, met again with massive protests about the implications of the World Trade movement. Washington sniper found guilty, perhaps getting the death sentence.

And whatís the lead story if one tunes to CNN, MSNBC, or the big three networksí evening news? The Michael Jackson Child Molestation charges.

Yeah, sure, heís a freaky guy and the public loves a story about a wacky celebrity. But these are serious charges leveled against him, and his odd appearance and strange ways pale in comparison to the gravity of these new allegations. The major news media give enormous time and effort to background and feature reporting on the Odd One.

But what about the major stories going on in the rest of the world? What about the 9 wannabe Democrats? What about the economy? What about the Energy Bill?

And why such scant coverage of the recent speech given by Al Gore, in which he blasted Ashcroft for slashing away at human rights, freedoms, and privacy?

WACKO SICKO JACKO

Was it a UN search team that was sent to the Neverland ranch in Santa Barbara, in search of Weapons of Mass Corruption? The Ranch, long a stronghold of power of Wacko Jacko, allowed the investigative team to peer all about. But were any found? Is this a case for Hans Blix?

What parent in their right mind would approve of their child spending the night at Michael Jacksonís place? Maybe money-hungry parents who would sell their kids to the devil in order to scam some money from the Gloved One. Especially after the scandal from ten years ago, and all the indications that MJ gave the kid and his family megabucks in order to kill the suit and have them drop the formal charges. And it is also likely that anyone who saw MJ dangling that baby over the balcony of that German hotel (one of those oft-repeated television moments) would be aware that this is not the most stable guy walking the planet.

This may become the battle of the loonies, depraved, and evil-hearted.

Was one of the Santa Barbara cops that conducted the search named Billie Jean, and was she knocking at Jacksonís door? Is it odd that MJ chose to Beat It as soon as he posted bail? This whole thing is Off The Wall, isnít it? Although some say Wacko Jacko is Gonna Be Startiní Somethiní, others say he will claim it is merely Human Nature. For the news media, no doubt that this is a Thriller.

Guilty or innocent, the guy sure is the weirdest looking human (?) walking the planet. Why is it I wonder what he and that former Florida Secretary of State Katherine Harris would look like if they became a couple. Or, taking this to the natural and grossest extreme, what would children of that union look like?

ANTI WAR NOTES

Remember VietNam Veterans Against The War? How soon until Gulf War Veterans Against the War (or Invasion/Occupation) comes into being?

Speaking of things about the current administration that are worthy of protestÖI cutínípasted this from a Topica list on which I lurk:

In case you don't know, a web site can request that search engines (and other robots) not include certain of it's web pages by having a file named "robots.txt" listing the pages to be excluded.

Check out the 'robots.txt' for 'whitehouse.gov' at:

http://www.whitehouse.gov/robots.txt

It has 1620 entries of which 755 (47%) contain the word "iraq".

Why does the Whitehouse not want web pages about Iraq to be
searched and/or archived?

Another member of the same list replied:

If you actually look at the file listings (this is a big chunk of the iraq stuff), you will see things like this:

Disallow: /kids/abc/iraq
Disallow: /kids/abc/popups/iraq
Disallow: /kids/abc/popups/text
Disallow: /kids/abc/text
Disallow: /kids/afac/iraq
Disallow: /kids/afac/states/iraq
Disallow: /kids/afac/states/text
Disallow: /kids/afac/text
Disallow: /kids/album/iraq
Disallow: /kids/album/text
Disallow: /kids/asia/iraq
Disallow: /kids/asia/text
Disallow: /kids/backtoschool/iraq
Disallow: /kids/backtoschool/text
Disallow: /kids/barney/iraq
Disallow: /kids/barney/text
Disallow: /kids/baseball/iraq
Disallow: /kids/baseball/photoessay/iraq
Disallow: /kids/baseball/photoessay/text
Disallow: /kids/baseball/print/iraq
Disallow: /kids/baseball/print/text
Disallow: /kids/baseball/quiz/iraq
Disallow: /kids/baseball/quiz/text
Disallow: /kids/baseball/tbphotoessay/iraq
Disallow: /kids/baseball/tbphotoessay/text
Disallow: /kids/baseball/teeball-20020923/iraq
Disallow: /kids/baseball/teeball-20020923/text
Disallow: /kids/baseball/text
Disallow: /kids/connection/iraq
Disallow: /kids/connection/print/iraq
Disallow: /kids/connection/print/text
Disallow: /kids/connection/text
Disallow: /kids/constitution/iraq
Disallow: /kids/constitution/photoessay/iraq
Disallow: /kids/constitution/photoessay/text
Disallow: /kids/constitution/photoessay2003/iraq
Disallow: /kids/constitution/photoessay2003/text
Disallow: /kids/constitution/quiz/iraq
Disallow: /kids/constitution/quiz/text
Disallow: /kids/constitution/text
Disallow: /kids/contact/iraq
Disallow: /kids/contact/text
Disallow: /kids/dreamteam/baseballcards/iraq
Disallow: /kids/dreamteam/baseballcards/text
Disallow: /kids/dreamteam/iraq
Disallow: /kids/dreamteam/quiz/iraq
Disallow: /kids/dreamteam/quiz/text
Disallow: /kids/dreamteam/text
Disallow: /kids/eggroll/iraq
Disallow: /kids/eggroll/photoessay/iraq
Disallow: /kids/eggroll/photoessay/text
Disallow: /kids/eggroll/quiz/iraq
Disallow: /kids/eggroll/quiz/text
Disallow: /kids/eggroll/text
Disallow: /kids/firstlady/iraq
Disallow: /kids/firstlady/quiz/iraq
Disallow: /kids/firstlady/quiz/text
Disallow: /kids/firstlady/text
Disallow: /kids/fitness/iraq
Disallow: /kids/fitness/print/iraq
Disallow: /kids/fitness/print/text
Disallow: /kids/fitness/text
Disallow: /kids/flatstanley/iraq
Disallow: /kids/flatstanley/text
Disallow: /kids/games/concentration/holiday/iraq
Disallow: /kids/games/concentration/holiday/text
Disallow: /kids/games/concentration/iraq
Disallow: /kids/games/concentration/text
Disallow: /kids/games/iraq
Disallow: /kids/games/text
Disallow: /kids/giftsofchildren/iraq
Disallow: /kids/giftsofchildren/text
Disallow: /kids/guide/iraq
Disallow: /kids/guide/print/iraq
Disallow: /kids/guide/print/text
Disallow: /kids/guide/text
Disallow: /kids/holiday/2001/iraq
Disallow: /kids/holiday/2001/text
Disallow: /kids/holiday/2002/iraq
Disallow: /kids/holiday/2002/text
Disallow: /kids/holiday/iraq
Disallow: /kids/holiday/text
Disallow: /kids/india/iraq
Disallow: /kids/india/text
Disallow: /kids/iraq
Disallow: /kids/media/iraq
Disallow: /kids/media/text
Disallow: /kids/mrscheney/iraq
Disallow: /kids/mrscheney/text
Disallow: /kids/news/iraq
Disallow: /kids/news/text
Disallow: /kids/ofelia/iraq
Disallow: /kids/ofelia/text
Disallow: /kids/pasteggroll/iraq
Disallow: /kids/pasteggroll/text
Disallow: /kids/pets/iraq
Disallow: /kids/pets/text
Disallow: /kids/photoessays/barney/iraq
Disallow: /kids/photoessays/barney/text
Disallow: /kids/photoessays/pets/iraq
Disallow: /kids/photoessays/pets/text
Disallow: /kids/photos/iraq
Disallow: /kids/photos/text
Disallow: /kids/president/iraq
Disallow: /kids/president/text
Disallow: /kids/presidents/iraq
Disallow: /kids/presidents/text
Disallow: /kids/presidentsday/color/iraq
Disallow: /kids/presidentsday/color/text
Disallow: /kids/presidentsday/iraq
Disallow: /kids/presidentsday/text
Disallow: /kids/presidentsday/videos/iraq
Disallow: /kids/presidentsday/videos/text
Disallow: /kids/quiz/text
Disallow: /kids/spotty/iraq
Disallow: /kids/spotty/text
Disallow: /kids/stateoftheunion/iraq
Disallow: /kids/stateoftheunion/text
Disallow: /kids/teeball/iraq
Disallow: /kids/teeball/text
Disallow: /kids/teeball2/iraq
Disallow: /kids/teeball2/text
Disallow: /kids/teeball2003/images/iraq
Disallow: /kids/teeball2003/images/text
Disallow: /kids/teeball2003/iraq
Disallow: /kids/teeball2003/text
Disallow: /kids/teeball3/iraq
Disallow: /kids/teeball3/text
Disallow: /kids/text
Disallow: /kids/timeline/iraq
Disallow: /kids/timeline/text
Disallow: /kids/tour/iraq
Disallow: /kids/tour/text
Disallow: /kids/valentines/quiz/iraq
Disallow: /kids/valentines/quiz/text
Disallow: /kids/vicepresident/iraq
Disallow: /kids/vicepresident/pets/iraq
Disallow: /kids/vicepresident/pets/text
Disallow: /kids/vicepresident/text
Disallow: /kids/westwing/quiz/iraq
Disallow: /kids/westwing/quiz/text
Disallow: /kids/whlife/iraq
Disallow: /kids/whlife/quiz/iraq
Disallow: /kids/whlife/quiz/text
Disallow: /kids/whlife/quiz2/iraq
Disallow: /kids/whlife/quiz2/text
Disallow: /kids/whlife/text

Now, I don't believe this is a case where anyone is trying to hide what might be in the subdirectory /kids/valentines/quiz/iraq or
/kids/baeball/quiz/iraq . This list was compiled in response to one of two things: either a sloppy bit of cgi code on the WH's own server (perhaps something used to generate the site map page) that generates addresses that don't exist or a specific search spider that did something along those same lines. The almost ubiquitous occurrence of a /text file/location for each seemingly bogus /iraq file/location
suggests one or the other is the cause. If the latter, those bogus addresses can be showing up in search engines and pointing users to things that simply never existed at that server, which wastes server resources and people's time. This looks like an effort to prevent access to files/locations that have either been moved to a new directory structure or, more likely, never existed at all. I found the http://www.whitehouse.gov/nsc/iraq/ is now parked at
http://www.whitehouse.gov/infocus/iraq/ - yet there are scores more
/infocus listing in the robots.txt file that cite the word "iraq" in similarly ludicrous ways as the /kids section, such as:

Disallow: /infocus/earlychildhood/hspolicybook/iraq
Disallow: /infocus/earlychildhood/hspolicybook/text
Disallow: /infocus/earlychildhood/iraq
Disallow: /infocus/earlychildhood/text
Disallow: /infocus/earthday/iraq
Disallow: /infocus/earthday/text

My guess is that the server is getting hit with requests for addresses and documents that do not exist and that this list is made up of those locations and file names.

While the actual specifics of the technical explanations are a guesstimate because I cannot see into the system, just on the surface this is a far more likely explanation than anything sinister. I would think that if they didn't want stuff searched or indexed, they wouldn't publish it to begin with. But that's just me.

Does it make your skin crawl, the thought of our government, the champions of democracy, those who would bring democracy to Iraq (despite the cultural shock this would bring to most Iraqis, who are accustomed to theocratic leaders and years of rule under a despot in the seat of power) are attempting to control what our eyes and ears can see?

PLAN FOR MARCH 2004 PROTEST

Take a look at that VVAW site mentioned above. Clicking and linking around one finds many interesting articles, comments, etc.

What caught my eye, at least for the first time in what one can only hope will become a well-publicized event, was news of plans for a Worldwide Global Day of Action against War and Occupation. When? One year to the day after the start of the Bush Invasive Action: March 20, 2004. Read all about it here. And start making your plans.

Perhaps Dubya will ignore this and liken it to a focus group, as he did the last time there was massive peaceful well-organized international protest against his warmaking policies.

This will be another international day of protest. All over the globe. A Global Day of Action. Could mean it will take place in your city, or in a major city near you. Be there. Be heard. Let that war monger and his minions know that those who oppose his actions are not to be ignored as just some focus group type activity.

This is the artwork on the United For Peace website about the March 20, 2004 activity:

nice graphic, important message