Remember Richard Jewell? Back in 1996 he was the poor schlub who was convicted by the Big Media as the Atlanta Centennial Olympic Park bomber, based on a leaked story and innumerable FBI agents and other law enforcement experts appearing on TV practically guaranteeing the public that Jewell, by dint of proximity, false information from a former employer, and fitting an FBI ‘profile’ of lonely demented maniacs seeking heroic status, was the man who did it. They had everything but the formality of a conviction in a court of law. I recall several of our fellow citizens so outraged at the time over Jewell that they gladly would have stuck his chubby body on a spit and slow-roasted him to death. After all, everybody the media, the punditry, the FBI, the guy tending bar – KNEW he was guilty — he killed and maimed innocent people! — so why bother with a trial? Then the facts began to trickle out; the former employer had invented the disparaging remarks about Jewell’s character; the vaunted FBI ‘lone bomber’ profile well, it was really just sheer speculation, after all. All the ‘proof of guilt’ left was that Jewell was in the area when the bomb exploded, along with hundreds of other people. The case was dropped due to lack of evidence and, finally, in 2005, the real perpetrator of the tragedy confessed none other than Christopublican nutcase Eric Rudolph, who had made his name blowing up abortion clinics and gay bars because he believed that life was sacred. Jewell, who died in 2007 at age 44, sued for libel without complete success, and he never really got his reputation back even an apology from AG Janet Reno didn’t help that. For those who need some help connecting the dots: These days, Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich has been convicted by the Big Media based on the allegations of one man, Patrick Fitzgerald, with no independent evidence that he has done anything wrong. Everyone the pundits, Democrats, the public, late-night comics just KNOW Blago is guilty why even bother with a trial? Yet, Fitzgerald needed, and received, an extension until April to bring indictments against Blago, whom he claimed was on a veritable ‘crime spree.’ In other words, he made a public announcement of sure guilt, and now he can’t even present a case to an indict-a-ham-sandwich grand jury? Something stinks here.
I’m not saying Blago is innocent; he might be the most corrupt politician since Boss Tweed for all I know, but it has to be proven in a court of law, not by prosecutorial press conferences nor the error-ridden scandalmongers of our national media. (These are, after all, the same solons who sold us on the Iraq disaster.) Note: Whenever you see this ‘convicted by the media’ shark-feeding in progress, just remember Richard Jewell.
See How They Roll: In a related item of Big Media heavy breathing over a scandal that wasn’t, let’s travel back through the mists of the past — or the ‘Clean Air’ pollution, if you will — to January of 2001 and the Bush Leaguers entering the White House. Remember the Big Scandal of the time was that departing Clinton staffers had trashed the place and pried up the ‘W’ on nearly every computer keyboard? Oh the moaning and groaning of the Right-Wing Wurlitzer and their stenographer pals in the White House Press Gang over how classless and horrible were the Clintonistas why would they do something so childish and awful? Well, that was until the truth emerged funny story, it was actually the Bushites who had quietly pushed the phony vandalism story to smear Bill Clinton and there was nothing more than normal office wear-and-tear left behind by his staff. Ha, ha. If you’re wondering why Obama and his family have been denied access to The Blair House, the traditional residence of soon-to-be-inaugurated presidents, even though it was empty until the Bushers hastily scheduled a one-night stopover for former Australia PM John Howard, here’s the proof that, not only is Junior the worst president we’ve ever had, but also the most peevish and vindictive. (Clinton left the presidency with a high approval rating, and Obama is entering it with a 70-some percent favorable rating and after winning a larger number of votes both electoral and popular than did Junior.) Incidentally, the Obama’s have been forced to stay at the Hay-Adams Hotel until January 15th, which is costing the taxpayers much more in security than if they had been living at The Blair. But, hey, who cares about the ‘little people’s’ money when it comes to pointlessly snubbing the democratically-elected president of the other party.
Laugh-A-Bull You Can’t Make Up: I know I promised never to mention him again, but this is too good: Joe the Plumber’s Helper, AKA Samuel Wurzelbacher of Lower Dipstick, Ohio, has stuck his unlicensed plunger back into the news stream as it was announced recently that he would be the new mighty-rightie Pajamas Media correspondent on sit down and swallow that hot beverage the Middle East! He even handed down this nugget of wisdom to a CNN affiliate on his assignment to Israel, “Being a Christian I’m pretty well protected by God I believe. That’s not saying he’s going to stop a mortar for me, but you gotta take the chance.” Perfecto! That’s just the kind of open-minded attitude we need in journalists providing information from that volatile region. Kudos to Pajamas Media for trying to burnish its credibility or satirical value, anyway. (Hey, maybe Bob the Builder could be tapped to report on the housing market, or Thomas the Tank Engine on transportation? The possibilities are endless.)
Laugh-A-Bull the Deuce: Lady Laura Bird Bush just unveiled a new set of White House china that the incoming Obama family may or may not like. The set cost nearly a half-million bucks ($492,798 for 320 14-piece place settings) and, in these times when much of Mr. and Mrs. John Q. Heading-For-The-Poorhouse are eating uncooked Spam off of paper plates, seems a tad excessive. True, it was financed by private funds, and it’s American made, but still — hasn’t anybody told clueless Laura we’re in the most serious financial crisis since the Great Depression? “These plates are perfect for cake, if you can’t afford bread.”
Laugh-A-Pitbull: Finally, according to some outfit called Veterinary Pet Insurance, the most popular dog name in 2008 was ‘Max,’ and it was the most popular name for a cat, as well. The company’s employees also picked the most unusual pet names for 2008 (read the full list here); topping the list for cats, ‘Edward Scissorpaws’ (although I liked No. 4 ‘Buddha Pest’ better), and for dogs, ‘Rush Limbark.’