Yes, Virgina, there is a Satan

Maybe Hell has frozen over. Maybe it’s business as usual. Maybe it’s Rupert working to alienate Democrats from Hillary, but it is certainly a strange twist:

Murdoch to host fundraiser for Hillary Clinton

Rupert Murdoch, the conservative media mogul whose New York Post tabloid savaged Hillary Clinton’s initial aspirations to become a US senator for New York, has agreed to host a political fundraiser for her re-election campaign.

The decision underlines an incongruous thawing of relations between Mr Murdoch and Mrs Clinton, who in 1998 coined the phrase “vast rightwing conspiracy” to denounce critics of her husband, such as Fox News, the conservative cable channel owned by Mr Murdoch’s News Corporation.

Gawd help us all.

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Pretzel Logic of the American Crunchy Con

Crunchy Culture: Witness the further deterioration of American political discourse, the rise of politics as fashion on the right. Here is a family apparently living right-wing according to left-wing values but still fixated on the evils of “lefties.”

By day he is a right-leaning pundit and opinion editor at the Dallas Morning News — grappling with his disappointment with how the war in Iraq is turning out. At night he comes home in a used 1993 Mercedes sedan with 109,512 miles on it, to live, like Thoreau at Walden, deliberately . (Oh, to hear him spill apologetically on about the car, how he didn’t mean to wind up driving something so un-crunchy, so perceptibly fat cat, but really, when you compare it value-wise to a used Honda, and anyhow, please note that the AC is always broken . . . roll down your window and feel that? It’s the cool breeze of intentional livin’.)

The Dreher family lives in a smallish, 1914 Craftsman bungalow near downtown Dallas — a contradiction to the exurb-centric, sprawly-mall Republican ways of the megalopolis that surrounds them.

“A house like this, in a lefty city?” Dreher asks. “We would never be able to afford it. But here? In ‘the hood’? We got this so cheap. We like it aesthetically. That’s not always valued here.”

So, now that we’re wearing our conservatism or liberalism like a, well, we’re wrapped in it like a flag, how can anyone conduct a political debate without it becoming just a personal attack? This development of a my-way-is-the-high-way because of the car I drive and the food I eat, not to mention the way I prepare it and how I educate my kids, approach to political orientation essentially inoculates politics from reasoned discussion of public issues. It was a disease on the left, too.

Marketing isn’t politics. Thought we all knew that by now.

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See beyond the parties to the people, first

Let’s (Third) Party – New York Times: Thomas Friedman’s talking third party in 2008.

What to do? I’m hoping for a third party. The situation is ripe for one: America is facing a challenge as big as the cold war — how we satisfy our long-term energy needs, at reasonable prices, while decreasing our dependence on oil and the bad governments that export it — and neither major party will offer a solution, because it requires sacrifice today for gain tomorrow.

I like Robert Steele’s idea better:

The Democrats, in my view, cannot beat the Republicans base-on-base or on the issues. Even a character debate will be a toss-up. There is, however, a major opportunity for a lasting revitalization of democracy if the Democrats will match up their most promising unity candidate with a new party, the American Independence Party, and a commitment to a Coalition Cabinet and Coalition Legislature committed to electoral reform.

This new party would be unique in history in that it would specifically foster the concept of “dual citizenship” and respect the original political allegiances of the moderate Republicans, the conservative Democrats, the Independents, Libertarians, Greens, Reforms, and the newly mobilized from both the Latin and Asian immigration pool as well as the survivors of the Dean revolution.

This party-that’s-not-a-party project promises to neutralize the partisanship of the existing parties from within.

I would suggest not calling it a “party” or “collective,” but a “campaign” in order to distinguish it from a permanent entity in opposition to the present parties.

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Continue reading “See beyond the parties to the people, first”

BuzzLogic’s first appearance in the Wall Street Journal – Fresh Crop of Investors Grows in Silicon Valley:

The new angel activity is proving to be a boon for entrepreneurs such as Rob Crumpler. The chief executive of BuzzLogic, a 20-month-old start-up in San Francisco, began raising funds for his Internet software company in February. Within eight weeks, he had raised his target of $750,000, plus an additional $100,000, all from angel investors. Mr. Crumpler says raising the $850,000 was “definitely easier” than he had anticipated.

That’s the first time BuzzLogic (formerly Persuadio), the company Todd Parsons and I launched in 2004, has made the Wall Street Journal. Rob worked a lot harder on that fund-raising than he lets on!