Monday, February 28, 2005

Johnny Depp's Philosophy





Johnny Depp's Philosophy

This is from an interview with Johnny Depp, which was granted to Erik Hedegaard for publication in the Guardian's Observer Magazine (UK).
"....that's Depp for you. He has a number of words he tries to live by. From the poem Desiderata by Max Ehrmann:
'In the noisy confusion of life keep peace with your soul. With all its sham, drudgery and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world. Be careful. Strive to be happy.'
From the preface to The Time of Your Life by William Saroyan:
'Place in matter and in flesh the least of the values, for these are the things that hold death and must pass away. Discover in all things that which shines and is beyond corruption.'
And from Depp himself, from deep within himself, when faced with his fears, doubts, anxieties, uncertainties and ambivalences, which are legion: 'F*ck it!'

'I've ended up saying it in life a lot and in the work a lot, and I've always found it very helpful,' he said. 'Yes,' he went on, between sips of red wine, '"F*ck it" over the years has always been pretty soothing.'


Introducing ProgressiveDepot.com



ProgressiveDepot.com Lets Visitors “Shop Their Hearts”

For Immediate Release:
Online Mall Invests Profits in Progressive Causes

LAKEWOOD, Ohio – Americans distraught over the 2004 election results now have a unique outlet to fight back: shopping. ProgressiveDepot.com, a new online shopping portal, promises to invest a percentage of its shoppers’ dollars in progressive causes.

Located at http://www.progressivedepot.com, ProgressiveDepot.com offers thousands of products from over 150 online merchants, including clothing and accessories, books, furniture and home d├ęcor, travel services, electronics and electronic media, food, automotive products and more.

"The Progressive dollar has power," says Adam Jusko, ProgressiveDepot.com owner and a delegate to the 2004 Democratic National Convention. "The challenge is to make our dollars command attention and create positive change."

"Immediately after the election, some progressives suggested boycotting companies perceived to be conservative supporters. I felt it would be more practical in the long term to create a site where visitors could shop with a clear conscience, secure in the knowledge that a piece of their shopping dollar goes toward progressive organizations they support."

ProgressiveDepot.com will announce its first contributions to progressive non-profits and/or political organizations in early July of 2005. Site visitors can sign up for the ProgressiveDepot.com mailing list and suggest organizations they feel deserve financial support.


Lebanon: The First of Many Victories for The People



Lebanon: The First of Many Victories for The People


Click on photo for story and link to photo credit


WR Pitt: Another Bloodbath in Iraq

Blogstories I Liked



Blogstories I Liked

Common Ills says Welcome To The New Iraq.

Don't miss this past weekend's Scrutiny Hooligans offerings:
Uptown Ruler has more on the "F-word".

With a tip o'the blog-hat to Some Bourbon Guerillas, Screwy Hooley presents further adventures in framing.


At Hoarded Ordinaries, Lorianne tells you about her Sunday drive around Southern New Hamphire.

I realize this is not a blog story, but I want to refer you to a piece by John C. Mohawk, Ph.D., who is a columnist for Indian Country Today and an author and professor in the Center for the Americas at the State University of New York at Buffalo. It's called U.S. policy in Iraq not sustainable. Mohawk covers the lessons of history looming over today's Iraq and explains how that history contradicts the NeoCon ideology.


more to come...

David Corn May Be Missing the Big Picture on Gannon



David Corn May Be Missing the Big Picture on Gannon

You can hear Marc Cooper's an interview with David Corn on the Gannon story at THE NATION.

I believe David is speaking with the heart of a journalist and the mind of a Democrat, yet I think he's missing the bigger issue, of which Jeff Gannon is only a small part. I think it's time we started thinking with a common soul, with all that it means to be American.

Mr. Corn is a journalist and it's clear he thinks with the journalist's mind. One idea Corn raises is that the story could be viewed from a different standpoint. Corn suggests that perhaps it wasn't a scandal that a partisan reporter from a highly questionable "news organization" got into the White House Press room via a series of day passes. Corn asks us to think a bit differently - Do we know of any "reporters" who COULDN'T get in because they were left-leaning partisans from highly questionable "news organizations? From a journalist's point of view, the "Left-outs" would be more telling than the "Let-ins". I do think this is a good point.

Corn is being overly cautious and uneasy, in my opinion, in discussing Gannon's sex-related issues. I don't think Corn should be so shy to express outrage or to express ironic humor, at best, over an easily-detected prostitute from a fake news organization doing national politics reporting which has been entered into our nation's most solemn Congressional Record.

Mr. Corn believes that Karl Rove is probably happy, seeing all the to-do about Gannon while no one is making a concerted effort to press for the declassification of documents regarding past activities of (National Intelligence Chief nominee) John Negroponte. Corn believes the left should not be in the business of "scalp-hunting", but should concentrate on policy issues. This is where I suggest that Corn is thinking with the mind of a Democrat. Concentrating on policy issues didn't get John Kerry very far (and worse, Gannon was part of the extremely damaging White house-enabled Kerry-disinformation scheme-through-journalism last year).

I believe Mr. Corn offers an all-too easy excuse for the White House, stating that it might have been just a 'simple screw-up' to allow Gannon in. When our fine journalists fail to see the bigger picture, they betray the nature of the First Amendment. I think Mr. Corn is being far too soft on this issue and I really don't understand why, except for the probability that he's missing the boat or afraid to offend. Perhaps he wishes to separate himself by those he sees as "scalp-hunters".

I consider Jeff Gannon to be the poster child for Propaganda-Gate.

Gannon, in and of himself, is not "the scandal". Yet, he is a glaring example of the corruption which has taken place in the public
(dis)information dissemination 'machinery', in which the White House is proven to have been been complicit.

Mr. Corn believes Gannon may be a waste of political time. While that may be true, we've ignored the little Gannons, Hannitys, Limbaughs and Fox News propaganda for too long. As always, the elephant in the room escapes detection.

Mr. Corn seems to be saying "Aww, they're not so bad" as the Bush administration is ripping him and his fellow discerning journalists to professional shreds. I've valued David Corn's ideas and his writing in the past, and I hope he will take some time to think this one through and reserve his judgement on what Gannon means, in terms of "the big picture" for a later time when it becomes more clear. (And I believe it will). This is about far more than gay prostitution and scalp-hunting. It's more a philosophical discussion we need to be having and less a concerted effort to destroy Mr. Gannon's already-poor reputation.

We can act in the mindset of Democrats and we can think with the heart of the journalist within us. Yet, if we do not start thinking with the soul of our common American traditional values, we will be forever lost. Freedom of the press is crucial to the life of American democracy.


Reconciliation



Reconciliation

I believe that the greatest need in our world today is diplomatic reconciliation. There have been deep wounds inflicted by the U.S. in her dogmatic pursuit of the Iraq war. In order to re-establish proper relations with the rest of the world,we must be willing to admit our share of the responsibility for the breakdown in international relations. We must be willing to forgive unconditionally.

If there is anger toward allies such as Germany and France for their perceived lack of cooperation in the past, we must remember the twin foci of 1.- admission of our own guilt and 2.- a willingness to forgive without condition. This is the only way to move on in the hope of future cooperation. The loud and smothering heaviness of right-wing propaganda spilling out over the radio and television airwaves does not help America's chances for diplomatic reconciliation with our foreign allies.

We were not meant to fight all this world's troubles alone. We should not act as if we expect to be able to do so.

It is a gross disservice to the men and women in our Armed Forces to place such burdens solely upon their shoulders.

What if we were to read this news in our morning paper?
"In an act of astounding humility, President Bush expressed deep regret for the mistakes that were made during the lead-up to the Iraq war and asked the world community to join the U.S. in all efforts to end terror."
I realize it may never happen. Yet, common sense would tell me that it would be just the kind of news that would heal resentments and enable us to move on with greater success against radical Islamic politics.

Checkbook journalism



Checkbook journalism

Words of wisdom from MoDo:
It was remarkable to see President Bush lecture Vladimir Putin on the importance of checks and balances in a democratic society.

Remarkably brazen, given that the only checks Mr. Bush seems to believe in are those written to the "journalists" Armstrong Williams, Maggie Gallagher and Karen Ryan, the fake TV anchor, to help promote his policies. The administration has given a whole new meaning to checkbook journalism, paying a stupendous $97 million to an outside P.R. firm to buy columnists and produce propaganda, including faux video news releases.
I like that description: "Checkbook journalism."
It goes along with the Jeff Gannon-as-prostitute saga. The Washington DC-world of PR and journalism has become nothing more than a prostitution ring.

"All the truth money can buy" is not what the Founding Fathers had in mind when they established the Bill-of-Rights groundwork for freedom of the press. It runs against common sense. With each purchase of propaganda comes the sure death of the right of conscience in America.


Cash as Weapon

Cash (in many cases our tax dollars), in the hands of the current White House administration, should be looked at as a weapon being used against the freedom of the American people.