••can ye pass the acid test?••

ye who enter here be afraid, but do what ye must -- to defeat your fear ye must defy it.

& defeat it ye must, for only then can we begin to realize liberty & justice for all.

time bomb tick tock? nervous tic talk? war on war?

or just a blog crying in the wilderness, trying to make sense of it all, terror-fried by hate radio and FOX, the number of whose name is 666??? (coincidence?)

Monday, November 21, 2005

con phobe tomes

Peter Schweizer, Do As I Say (Not As I Do): Profiles in Liberal Hypocrisy

Richard Miniter, Disinformation: 22 Media Myths That Undermine the War on Terror

one of the great advantages of c-span2's book tv is that listening to writers talk about their latest work—mostly at promotional events—gives you not only good information but also a chance to sift chaff out of wheat so you don't have to waste much time or any money to learn a book isn't what its title says it is.

sometimes the main title misleads, like richard miniter's disinformation, sometimes it's the subtitle, as in peter schweizer's use of the phrase "liberal hypocrisy."

schweizer takes on a bunch of lefties he considers liberal, including noam chomsky, ted kennedy, michael moore, ralph nader, george soros, and barbra streisand, at least some of whom are actually too far left to call merely "liberal." much of their "hypocrisy" consists of investing their wealth and protecting it with trusts—just like cons—rather than paying higher taxes. schweizer apparently thinks that contradicts their belief that the rich should be more heavily taxed and corporations should be more stringently regulated.

schweizer obviously thinks taking advantage of existing tax breaks conflicts with advocating a law change to take away loopholes, but not even libs are expected to pay more than the law requires. being liberal doesn't mean you have to accept voluntary poverty, but there's no reason to believe rich libs wouldn't pay higher taxes if they had to. the difference between libs and cons is cons don't want the law to make the rich pay more taxes.

i'd assumed miniter's book was on the topic of disinformation, but it's not. the title seems to be nothing more than a catchy attention-getter. the real title is the subtitle, because the book exposes what miniter believes to be "media myths that undermine the war on terror" such as the comparison of iraq to vietnam and the idea that bin laden is on dialysis.

the latter may or may not be disinformation. i know nothing of the terror leader's medical condition nor of the source of the story.

the source is what causes a lie to be disinformation. if al qaeda spread it to make bin laden harder to catch, then it's disinformation. if the US spread it to encourage hunters, it's still disinformation. but if it's just gossip that originated without strategic intent, it's only a rumor.

i think miniter just disagrees with the iraq/vietnam example. he objects by citing a list of differences between the two countries and between the two wars. he wouldn't like the iraq war called "bush's vietnam."

of course, iraq is quite different from vietnam, and the wars are very different, and most analogies are false, but there are significant similarities, and the phrase "bush's vietnam" conveys a truth prosaic literalists might never grasp.

thank you, ted kennedy.

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