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Madeleine Begun Kane,
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NOTABLES WEBLOG (Feb. 1-28, 2003)

Madeleine Begun Kane

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Here's where I archive my Feb. 1-28, 2003 Notables Weblog posts. For my most recent blog postings, click here. And please don't forget to check out my latest humor columns, Dubya's Dayly Diary, and my other political humor.

February 27, 2003

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February 25, 2003

  • Bush's disdain for peace demonstrators deserves a song, don't you think? Feel free to sing "Bush Don't Need No Demonstrations" to "Another Brick in the Wall" by Pink Floyd, using this midi link.

    Bush Don't Need No Demonstrations
    By Madeleine Begun Kane

    Bush don't need no demonstrations.
    He don't need no 'pinion polls.
    No dark forecasts of gloom and war doom.
    Peaceniks! Leave George Bush alone!
    Hey! Peaceniks! Leave George Bush alone!

    Oil sweet oil! Oh don't you tell me Bush is like Gore.
    Oil sweet oil! George claims it's not his motive for war.

    Bush says he's helped education.
    What he wants is thought control.
    And religion throughout our classrooms.
    Preachers! Leave our kids alone!
    Let teachers help kids' minds to grow.

    Stand up tall or yet another right takes a fall.
    Heed the call or let our freedoms ring never more.

    © February 25, 2003 Madeleine Begun Kane. All Rights Reserved.

    And if you missed my comic strip on the same general topic it's here.

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February 24, 2003

  • A weird thing started happening a week or two ago and is reaching crazed proportions today. I'm talking about the thousands of surfers (and for once I'm not exaggerating) who've reached my site via search engine queries like "song by Bush & Blair," "Bush and Blair love song," "George Bush Tony Blair song parody video," and many variations thereof.

    Their various queries are landing them on a reasonably appropriate page of my site (my Bush and Blair song parody). But while I'd like to think they enjoy my musical spoof, I'm quite sure that's not what they're looking for.

    If anyone knows what all these people want and where it is, please let me know. I'll happily link to it here and on my own Bush / Blair song parody. I suspect it has something to do with a recently updated version of this George Michael song. But I may be wrong and, in any event, I can't find the new video or audio clip that these searchers seem to be longing for.

    Post-Publication Update: I finally figured out what people are looking for. It's a video of Bush and Blair singing Endless Love. Once you get to that page you have to scroll down to Viral Video to find the Bush and Blair spoof song. Warning: To view it you need to sign up for a fee-based subscription service. They apparently have a free trial available called "RealOne SuperPass Trial." But I didn't try it because it appears to be a "we'll charge your credit card if you don't cancel in X days" deal.

    Yet Another Update:'s Political Humor "Bush Multimedia and Animations" page has lots of anti-Bush satire including the Bush Blair Sing Endless Love video. There's no fee, although you do need QuickTime. (Fast connection advised.)

  • I've just posted a new Dubya comic strip: Chicken-Hawk President. The inspiration behind it was this.
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February 23, 2003

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February 22, 2003

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February 20, 2003

  • Does calling Bush a cowboy insult real cowboys? Apparently so, according to this commentary by the wife of a retired cowboy. She details many fine cowboy qualities, and Bush has none of them.

    And so it's with apologies to cowboys everywhere that I offer the latest in my series of Dubya comic strips. (You'll find the inspiration behind that toon here and here.)

  • I've never been a Francophile, but I'm getting a kick out of the trouble France has been making for Bush. So in response to all the chatter about boycotting French goods, I've decided to stock up on red wine and brie. Nonetheless, I had to laugh at the How French Are You? Quiz. (Via Amish Tech Support)
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February 19, 2003

  • The latest of the Conversations With Conservatives is a gem!

  • Here are some sites and blogs I've recently discovered and like:
    CNN Lies
    Sam Spade's Tools
    Samizdata's Blog Glossary
    Government Guide
    Behind The Homefront
    Exposing The Right

  • Last night, as I was wallowing in Dubya doldrums, worrying about war, bitching about the blizzard, and wondering when my shovel-abused body would recover from the latest snowstorm, I remembered this 1995 piece, written for Buffalo Magazine. Talk about innocent times!

    February Bashing
    By Madeleine Begun Kane

    FROM: Director of Public Relations
    RE: February Bashing
    DATE: February 1

    During the next few weeks we may expect the usual onslaught of anti-February propaganda. Magazines and Op-Ed pages are sure to be filled with whiny pieces prattling about depression, doldrums, and debt -- all unfairly attributed to February. To counter this, I suggest a full-blown media assault portraying February as the kind, magnanimous month it really is. The following points can and should be made:

        1. February's weather is no more depressing than January or, for that matter, March.

        2. February is short. As most people know, it is generally confined to 28 days and, thus far, has never swelled beyond 29. People ought to pick on months their own size.

        3. Some of our best Presidents were born in February. Not only can we boast about Washington and Reagan, but we can also tout Lincoln without fear of repercussion. (There's no need to pitch the South because it's already pro-February.) As for Vice-Presidents, we won't mention Aaron Burr, of course, but I need your thoughts on Quayle.

        4. February isn't the reason people are cash poor; Christmas is the culprit. If they didn't spend so much money in December, their credit card bills wouldn't haunt them come February 1st. And if you really want to talk money squeeze, think April 15. Slogan -- "Don't Blame February, Blame The Feds."

        5. Every February people gripe about being over-weight and lethargic. Well, what do they expect after all that celebrating? People should ask themselves how many parties they gorged themselves at late last year. Not to mention SuperBowl Sunday. That's why they're fat. Remember, nobody celebrates President's Day with eggnog, pizza, beer, and chips.

        6. February is the birth month of many fine actors (Hal Holbrook, Red Buttons, Abe Vigoda, Zsa Zsa Gabor); singers (Enrico Caruso, Marian Anderson, Alice Cooper, Sonny Bono); and writers (James Joyce, Sinclair Lewis, Liz Smith, Helen Gurley Brown). On second thought, scratch Joyce. He's far too verbose.

        7. Not only does February feature Valentine's Day, but it includes many outstanding month-long celebrations such as American Heart Month, Creative Romance Month, Canned Food Month, and the Cordova Iceworm Festival. However, we probably won't want to mention that February is Great American Pies Month, National Macadamia Nut Month, and National Snack Foods Month. (Note: Must check calorie count before making final decision re "Shape Up With Pickles Time.")

        8. I'm still researching February's week-long festivals. Unfortunately, all I've come up with so far is National Condom Week.

    I'd like to launch my pro-February campaign right away. What do you think?

    TO: Director of Public Relations
    FROM: President
    RE: Bashing Brouhaha
    DATE: February 24

    I can't deal with this now. Perhaps I'll address it when I return from spa. Right now I'm too depressed. (Dictated, but not read.)

    © 1995 Madeleine Begun Kane. All Rights Reserved. First Published Buffalo Magazine.

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February 14, 2003

  • I love today's Valentine's Day Message to George Bush & Tony Blair. And here's my own take on the Bush/Blair relationship.

  • The allegations in this lawsuit over religious coercion at an Iowa Prison Ministry program ably illustrate the dangers and (IMHO) unconstitutionality of Bush's faith-based crapola.

  • Balkinization has a fine post about Bush's inadequacies. Here's a taste:

        People tend to associate action and bluster with strong leadership. What this overlooks is that a person can fail to be up to the job of President not because he is too reticent and weak-willed, or because he freezes in a crisis, but because he overreacts and pushes too hard and too fast at the wrong times. George W. Bush’s failings are not neurosis and indecision. They are stubbornness, tunnel vision, narrowmindedness, over-aggressiveness, belligerence, and hubris.

  • Dubya's taken some time out from war-mongering, killing our economy, and pretending to be compassionate to write in his diary.
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February 13, 2003

  • Larry Simon's in a lather because so many fine bloggers don't ping Pinging, for those who don't know about it, is an easy method (made even easier if you use Larry's one-click trick) to let other bloggers know you've posted new content. Anyway, the poor fellow's frustrated that so few people do it. Maybe this will make him feel better (with apologies to Duke Ellington and Irving Mills):

    It don't mean a thing if you don't click that ping.
    Please don't post a thing with no update notice ping.
    It makes no difference if your writing's hot,
    With deep thoughts sizzling, packed with everything you've got.
    It don't mean a thing if you don't click that ping!

  • Wow and bravo! Cartoonist Art Spiegelman has resigned from The New Yorker to protest the magazine's political timidity.

  • ReachM High Cowboy thinks we should be alert for a red alert. I'm afraid he's right.

  • Here's some terrific news: An anti-war lawsuit is being filed in Boston today, according to U.S. Representative John Conyers. It will allege "that President Bush does NOT have the authority to launch a military invasion of Iraq without a congressional declaration of war" and "that the congressional declaration on Iraq last October did NOT specifically declare war and unlawfully gave Bush the right to make that decision." It's to be filed by Conyers, five other U.S. House members, three U.S. service members and the parents of other U.S. military personnel and will name Bush and Rumsfeld as defendants.

    This article has more information, including the names of the other Congressional plaintiffs and the fact that a preliminary injunction will be sought to bar Bush from declaring war without a Congressional decision. I particularly like the quote from attorney John Bonifaz that "President Bush is not a king."

  • I'm 0% Republican according to the How Republican Are You? Quiz and I didn't even cheat. What a relief!

  • My latest cartoon is called Dubya Touts Tape.
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February 12, 2003

  • Sorry for the silence, but I'm just back from a family wedding in Montreal. I thought I'd be posting while I was away. But then again, I also foolishly assumed that the 90 minute flight from NYC to Montreal could be accomplished in something less than the 33 hours it actually took.

    Anyway, I'm drowning in email and seriously out of the news loop. But I did manage to do a new Dubya comic strip -- Our Prudent President.

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February 6, 2003

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February 5, 2003

  • It's no surprise that Bush isn't exactly brimming over with intellectual curiosity. Still, I found it astounding that he's never seen a space launch or landing. And that he's never stepped foot in Houston's Johnson Space Center. I guess it wasn't sufficiently convenient.

    But the best part is that Ari Fleischer claimed Bush visited the Center when he was Governor and was forced to retract the claim after the Center said no such visit ever occurred.

    Still confused? This comic strip explains everything.

  • Robert J. Ambrogi has written an excellent article called "Lawyers As Pundits, By Way of the Web." It's a "must read" for anyone interested in lawyer bloggers, since it's packed with reviews of 30 lawyer penned blogs. And I'm delighted to say mine got a lovely mention, along with some of my favorite lawyer bloggers and many others who are new to me and well worth reading.

  • Delightfully crazed PlumCrazy ably hosts the Carnival of the Vanities this week. It features many fine space shuttle related posts and much more. So go check it out!
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February 4, 2003

  • Monday evening I opened the door to my study and found myself face to face with a squirrel, happily feasting on my files. Fortunately, my scream scared him into fleeing and leaving his dinner behind. Not so fortunately, those accordion-style AC window unit frames are no more squirrel-proof than your average bird feeder.

    What files did he eat? Let's just say I'm hoping the IRS doesn't decide to audit a certain tax year which I won't identify, in an exercise of prudent paranoia.

    I'm proud to report that I was pretty calm after my initial scream, probably because I'm no stranger to squirrel invasions.

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February 3, 2003

  • I won't be writing about the emotional aspects of Saturday's space shuttle disaster, because I'm not especially good at that sort of thing. Instead, I'll focus on (a) unheeded warnings about the space shuttle program; and (b) an important byproduct of the disaster.

    According to this Guardian article about NASA chiefs ignoring safety warnings, former NASA engineer Don Nelson (a 36 year NASA veteran) sent George W. Bush a letter "warning that his 'intervention' was necessary to 'prevent another catastrophic space shuttle accident'."

    In addition to Nelson, there's Dian Hardison, a former NASA engineer and a highly decorated one, at that. In a letter posted at Declan McCullagh's Politech, she says she was fired on a trumped up charge after warning that "the technicians and engineers were overworked," "that there were too many managers and too many meetings and 'dog-and-pony' shows," that staffers were struggling with "obsolete and overpriced and unqualified equipment," and that this "was going to result in another Challenger."

    When disasters like this occur, both the media and the American people tend to get diverted from issues that were big right before the disaster. So it's not surprising that Bush has, yet again, benefited from a catastrophic event. I'm referring to the fact that follow-up coverage of Bush's lie-laden State of the Union address has all but disappeared.

    Does anyone even remember that both Hans Blix and Mohamed ElBaradei of the International Atomic Energy Agency have, while not using the word lie, essentially accused Bush of lying in his SOTU address? And I'm not talking about exaggeration and puffery. I'm talking about flat out lies used to rev the public up against Saddam Hussein -- lies about aluminum tubes, Iraqi intelligence officers posing as the scientists inspectors are supposed to interview, compromised inspections, Iraqi ties to Al Qaeda -- all distortions of the truth, misinformation, disinformation and, yes, lies to garner support for unilateral war against Iraq.

    And so Bush gets to play fast and loose with the facts on prime time, while efforts to bring the truth out get lost as our focus shifts to yet another disaster.

    I wrote a song parody about Bush's State of the Union address, but never got a chance to post it here. I think it's time. Feel free to sing "Old George Dubya's Talkin'" to "Everybody's Talkin'" by Fed Neil, using this midi link.

    Old George Dubya's Talkin
    By Madeleine Begun Kane

    Old George Dubya's talkin' at me.
    I don't buy a word he's sayin'.
    Can't bear the echoes of his lies!

    People must start carin'.
    Doesn't matter what their race is.
    Must see the truth beyond the guise.

    It's so clear, for oil he's a-pinin'.
    He's the country's bane.
    Fightin' wars when violence suits his goals.

    Rantin' 'bout his en'mies' sins.
    Hailin' sleazy policies.
    Violatin' his vows, yes, one by one.

    Old George Dubya's lyin' to me.
    I don't buy a word he's sayin'.
    Can't bear the echoes of his bile!

    People must start carin'.
    Doesn't matter what their race is.
    Must tell the facts from Bush's lies.

    It's so clear, for pow'r he's a-pinin'.
    He's the country's bane.
    Startin' wars when violence suits his goals.

    Rantin' 'bout his en'mies' sins.
    Toutin' failing policies.
    Violatin' his vows, yes, one by one.

    Old George Dubya's talkin' at me.
    I don't buy a word he's sayin'.
    Can't bear the echoes of his lies!

    We can't let him leave the truth behind.
    We won't let him leave the truth behind.

    Oh, noooooooooooooooooo.
    We can't let him leave the truth behind.
    We won't let him leave the truth behind.

    © January 30, 2003 Madeleine Begun Kane. All Rights Reserved.

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