The Last Word (tm) SURPRISE!
A nonpartisan populist zine!
Vol. 13/No. 4 - 403rd issue - March 8, 2004
Bathroom Bandit, editor-in-chief - serving Bellevue, KY, from New America
email@example.com - http://members.iglou.com/bandit
blog blogga blog at http://bandit73.pitas.com
FEDERAL FASCISTS BRIBE SCHOOLS TO TEST FOR DRUGS
The federal government's misnamed National Institute of Justice (sounds like something from a Superman comic book, doesn't it?) is bribing 22 school systems across America to implement a new aerosol drug test to use against any student they suspect of using illegal drugs.
Officials in Palm Beach County, FL, gloat that the tests will be administered to any student who appears to be on drugs based on their appearance or behavior.
In other words, anyone who doesn't dress like some goody-good prep.
It is unclear what the punishment will be for those brave enough to refuse to be tested - assuming there's still some people left who aren't so brainwashed that they'll go along with the tests. But the ACLU correctly says that by conducting mandatory drug tests the school system has already crossed the line into violating the constitutional guarantee of privacy.
EDITORIAL CARTOONS CENSORED BECAUSE OF CONSERVATIVES
When the New York Times website yanked Ted Rall's popular editorial cartoons they said it was because the drawings didn't fit the site's "tone".
But the REAL reason Rall got pulled was that the Times didn't have the courage to stand up against a right-wing e-mail campaign against the cartoons.
This is exactly like how conservatives censored "The Reagans", a miniseries that had been scheduled to air on CBS, by complaining gaudily about it until CBS caved in - which probably didn't take much, because major media outlets these days usually don't have the gumption to stand up for their own content. Nonetheless, this proved that if you're conservative, you can censor a work just by screaming loudly about it.
As an aside, we should also point out that this flap reminded us of why we despised Reagan so: During and after his reign, you couldn't dare to criticize his policies without facing repercussions at the hands of the cult that formed around him. (As late as 1995 one of my posts on a taxpayer-funded computer bulletin board was deleted for speaking ill of King Ronnie.) If you think Reagan was entirely innocent throughout his political career, it was he who, as governor of California, sent the National Guard onto college campuses to brutalize antiwar protesters, who he called "campus malcontents and filthy speech advocates".
A couple years ago - after a San Francisco Chronicle reporter's legal battle with the corrupt FBI that lasted 17 years - a story finally appeared describing how Reagan, when he was governor, conspired with the FBI and CIA to illegally silence protests and destroy the careers of university faculty members who disagreed with him. Reagan called it his "psychological warfare campaign", and it would have also involved filing bogus tax evasion charges against dissidents. Even during his acting career, Reagan ratted out "subversives" in Hollywood and caused them to be blacklisted.
Anyone who's been audited by the feds after criticizing Bush will find creepy parallels with Reagan's actions. Don't think things aren't much worse now than under Reagan, because there's probably enough stuff going on right now to fill a whole Encyclopaedia Britannica set that we don't even know about.
GOPSTAPO DIRTY TRICKS
Judging by the atmosphere of complete elitist cluelessness that prevails on the Internet, you have to be prepared for users of a message board posting cartoony death threats against a respected consumer advocate and rewriting history by denying the fact that dictator Bush's sycophants have been hostile to free speech at campaign events on public property. But you'd be surprised at people doing this purporting to be supporters not of Bush, but of presumed Democratic presidential nominee John Kerry!
We know how lethargic today's milquetoast Democrats are when it comes to tackling the Republicans' suppression of dissent and overall extremism, but since John Kerry doesn't look like a maniac like Bush does, we can be almost certain that those who have been spewing spleen in the name of his campaign aren't the real thing but are actually GOP operatives disguised as Kerry backers. Evidently their goal is to split the anti-Bush vote by scaring enough Kerry voters off to a third party to assure that Bush wins the election.
Now if someone supports a third party anyway, that's just life, as the Democrats have a lot of work to do to regain the voters they've lost on the left. (Although more liberal than any Senate Republican, a new report ranks Kerry as more conservative than some of the Senate's most irritating New Democrats.) We think the anti-Bush vote is going to be big enough to go around this time anyhow. But if you support a third party, it shouldn't be because of a bunch of vitriol posted by a Bush cultist posing as a crazed Kerry supporter.
One of the phony posts made by a Bush follower under a decoy account declares, "I would shoot Ralph Nader in the skull if somebody provided the gun." That statement sounds like it's straight out of the pages of Michael Sewage - not something from the Kerry campaign. Then the user went on to accuse Nader of killing hundreds in the Iraq War!
It is Ralph Nader who helped make cars and other products safer - and some crackpot has the unmitigated gall to threaten to shoot him in the head?!
We know the account was fake because the user then suddenly glommed onto the John Edwards campaign when it looked like Edwards was gaining ground on Kerry, in the hopes of making him appear unglued. Through it all, this user tried to pick petty arguments with progressives who posted on that forum.
Bush thuggery would barely even rise to the level of being discussed here, if not for the fact that all too often it goes ignored by others. As school systems indoctrinate, and as the media vomits a steady diet of recurring gibberish, America has become a land of zombie-like robots who have started to believe the lies they hear. This is why we often besmirch our dignity stating things that should be obvious. Even so, it's hard to come to grips with occupation by a regime led by one of the world's worst dictators, even after our own struggles with fascism in earlier years.
BUSH TURNS HIS BACK ON VETERANS
Bush loves war.
But he doesn't give a flying fuck about soldiers who were forced to risk their lives fighting in wars he avoided.
It's enough to make you empty the contents of your stomach on Fountain Square.
The Bushshit regime plans to close numerous hospitals for war veterans, including some in Kentucky and Ohio. One Vietnam War veteran said of the Bush proposal, "They're slitting our throats. They don't care about us. Period."
Well, of course Bush doesn't care. Did anyone expect him to care? To be part of the new breed of conservatives means never having to care about anyone other than corporate polluters. Human needs and aspirations are not part of the New Right lexicon.
Since the Contract With America the government has turned its back on the poor, the disabled, the elderly, students, and now veterans. The Republicans have in the past decade left a poopy trail of broken promises that's going to need some industrial strength goo remover to clean up.
But you knew that.
ANOTHER RIGGED ELECTION
Voting on March 2 in California, which involved the presidential primary and numerous bond measures, was marred by blatant irregularities that could only be intentional.
In Berkeley, one of the state's most liberal cities, voters were turned away because the voting machines suspiciously died. In addition, the polling sites had - get this - run out of ballots for the Democratic primary just a bit after 8 AM.
Well, they should have printed more fucking ballots!
We can just picture some Republican operative working at the polling place "accidentally" spilling coffee on a big stack of Democratic ballots or dropping them all over the floor and tearing them up with their shoes. This is exactly what happened a few years back when Republican bigwigs were hired to help conduct an election in Mexico, and thousands of voters were turned back because they ran out of ballots.
Why aren't the people of California marching in the streets?
GREENSCAM SPEWS VENOM
The Federal Reserve's Alan Greenspan is far from innocent in America's economic woes of the past decade, and once again he has showcased his interest in protecting the wealthiest Americans and their precious, precious money - at the expense of everybody else.
In congressional testimony a couple weeks ago he demanded that Congress slash Social Security - AGAIN!!! - while also insisting that Bush's disastrous tax cuts for the rich continue.
Let's get this straight: Greenscam wants to siphon money from people who are retired or disabled - money that came from their paycheck when they worked, with the government's promise that it was theirs for their future - and use that to pay for extending Bush's tax handout to the rich, who will never have to worry about not having the money to retire, that is already estimated to cost well over a trillion smackeroos over the next 10 years.
Yes, you read it right.
He wants to raise the age of eligibility for Social Security retirement benefits even further than Republicans in Congress already have raised it. The way it is now, people born in 1960 or later are going to get shafted by not being able to get back their own money until they turn 67, which is 2 years later than they would have previously. Greenspan of course wants to make it worse.
People who receive Social Security were already robbed by the deliberate miscalculation of the cost of living increase - which occurred at the same time congressional Republicans were voting themselves enormous pay raises in violation of the Twenty-Seventh Amendment, and was finally rectified when the Republicans briefly lost control of the Senate - and workers in the lowest tax brackets were similarly raided when they didn't get that check from the Bush regime that "everybody" got (which itself was an attempt to bribe people to vote for Bush in the next election). Why not make the rich pay for once?
Alan Greenspan should be fired at once so the American public doesn't have to listen to him spewing right-wing bile through his tightly clenched incisors anymore.
REVENGE ON THE CHEVRON MONSTER
The oil industry is an irritant to us and other foes of corporate tyranny, but that's no reason why we shouldn't have a little bit of fun ridiculing it.
The Chevron Monster - also known as the Standard Monster - was a legend in its own time. Looking out the living room window of my childhood home after dark, one would see the internally lit sign for a Standard or Chevron gas station glowing off in the distance. (I always used the names Chevron and Standard interchangeably, since their logos were the same.) I envisioned the post for the sign as having arms and legs, with the sign itself being the head. Thus the sign was referred to as the Chevron Monster.
It was an eerie sight, like so many other things are for a child or for an adult on especially lucid days. Seeing the Chevron Monster provided the same type of thrill as visiting a haunted house or driving in wooded areas after dark. The Chevron Monster constantly leered at us from the main drag, and we liked it fine that way.
I bet the Chevron Monster's shit stinks from eating all that gasoline.
Now the forces of dissent have gotten their revenge on this symbol of Big Oil.
We've been sent a recent photo of the inside of a restroom at a Chevron (ppphh!) gas station in Smiths Grove, KY, near Bowling Green. We see that customers have decorated the door with numerous antiwar and antifascist slogans.
Gasp! In Kentucky! What is this world coming to?!
A survey last year ranked Kentucky as America's most hawkish state, yet hardly anyone we've met supported Bush's illegal war on Iraq - a war that, like the '91 war, would not have been fought if not for the influence of Big Oil. If that many people in Kentucky oppose Bush's war, just think how many oppose it in other states.
Restroom graffiti is a good gauge of public opinion. In Campbell County in 1995 you'd find right-wing graffiti on lavatory walls, but the political winds in Kentucky may be shifting, judging by the left-wing graffiti that's cropped up lately.
MORE STUPIDITY AT THE POST
The Kentucky Post is so out of step with this planet that in its presidential poll on its web page, the only choices it provides are Kerry, Bush, and "unsure". No Nader, no third parties, and no "other". Just "unsure".
And people say the media has a liberal bias?!
Uh, we think we're no longer "unsure" about who we're gonna support - and it fucking well sure ain't gonna be Bush, and it probably won't be Kerry (unless maybe he picks Dennis Kucinich as his running mate).
The Post ran a lengthy article the other day blaming the "sexual revolution" of the '60s for the Catholic Church's sex abuse scandal, even though the abuse was going on long before that era, so it's not like we can expect the Post to be in touch with reality.
MONTHLY MORON MOTORIST
This isn't even a contest. The hands-down winner for February is that semi that kept swerving onto the sidewalk on US 27 in Fort Thomas.
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(Copywrong 2004. Online edition created with Internet Exploder 6.)
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