Thursday, September 02, 2004

Iraqi Coalition Casualty Count (and more)

One way we honor the dead is to acknowledge their passing. A vague, but heart-felt celebration of a stranger's life becomes a communal event when it is published or broadcast. This is especially true in times of war when so many more people die than during peace time. There is something dramatic and comforting about the announcement, the proclamations, the processions, the services, the tears and sorrow, that makes the loss somehow palatable. War needs the salve of these celebrations of lives lost. It is normal to honor those who die in war.

The United States government refuses to publicly display and/or discuss war casualties from the war in Iraq. As if a refusal to announce them somehow negates them and makes the war more of a success.

This administration has launched an immoral war simply to acquire the oil reserves of Iraq for their own personal profit and they do not want us acknowledging its cost in human lives.

The Iraqi Coalition Casualty Count at thinks it is important to know the numbers.


12noon: (Let's give Hayes the Shaft!) And this just in from last night's GOP events . . .

Humble Hastert, Rowdy Rockers Share the Stage at the Avalon

At a Chelsea church converted into a nightclub called the Avalon, an audience of lobbyists and Hill aides last night chanted "Den-ny, Den-ny, Den-ny." Their hero: Publicly awkward and humble Speaker J. Dennis Hastert, R-Ill., who quickly told the packed crowd to "Cut it out."

It was not a political rally after Vice President Dick Cheney’s speech, but rather a party honoring Hastert that was sponsored by the Recording Industry Association of America. Right after Isaac Hayes sang "Shaft," Hastert introduced the second musical act, Trace Adkins, as a "bipartisan" entertainer. According to Hastert, at least one of Adkins’ song is about the Democratic Party: "No Thinkin’ Thing."

Adkins, a charismatic country-rock singer, then performed his lusty, hip swaying number which features lyrics including, "It’s a chemical, physical, emotional devotion/Passion that we can’t hold back."

Indeed, convention politics often makes for odd bedfellows. Two of the financial sponsors of the party at the Avalon, which also featured musical hooligan Kid Rock, were eBay and the National Rifle Association. All during the concert their logos flashed on a back wall.

Not that many years ago a lone party goer aimed to look cool by leaning against a wall and smoking a cigarette. Now people with no one to mingle with keep their head down and tap into their BlackBerrys. — Jill Barshay

Avalon used to be Limelight.

I used to like Isaac Hayes, but as my friend points out: "Isaac is a Scientologist! Now we know the supposedly "gay-owned" Avalon puts money before civil rights. . . . How republican! Jim"

I've never had any use for Kid Rock or his tedious girlfriend, so it's easy to dismiss them. But now we have to add Isaac Hayes to our boycott lists!

I think what Jim says about Avalon is important: since they are more interested in money than civil rights (shown by renting their space to a group of people committed to abridging the civil rights of homosexuals), we should not ever go there and spend money. If you are gay or lesbian, or have gay or lesbian friends, you should not go to Avalon ever again. It's really simple!

. . . and the moderation . . .

Today's Doonesbury, posted by Yahoo!, pointed out the Administration's moderation very tactfully:

(reprinted without permission)

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