The Week in Review

Jeff Alworth

We knew going in to the week of January 31 that untruths would be committed--at no less an august event than the State of the Union.  Bush was in full hype mode, trying to hustle up interest in what he now forbade his staff from calling "private Social Security accounts."  To whet our whistle for this high-level deception, on Monday Oregon State Representative Dan Doyle, having spent the week incognito, was muscled into early retirement for his low-level deceptions.  It seemed like a good opportunity for the Oregon Legislature to burnish its dull reputation, so the Senate Revenue Committee began hearings on how to stop tax cheats.

On Tuesday, Nepal dropped the "constitutional" and returned to being a monarchy again, as King Gyanendra refitted his head with a crown, sacked the government, put the prime minister under house arrest, and seized full control.  President Bush, hearing the news on Fox, reportedly called Gyanendra an "amateur."  In their own little version of king making, Oregon Dems decided to back Howard Dean as party chair.  Alarmed moderates wrung their hands and murmured, "but what will George Will say?"

On Wednesday evening, George W. Bush strode upon a grand stage to the orps of clapping seals--the right half of the room--and lied spectacularly.  Gone were mere false suggestions.  Now Bush was proudly doublespeaking: "By the year 2042, the entire system would be exhausted and bankrupt."  Joe Lieberman, receiving a kiss on the cheek from the Don, swore omerta.  Unnoticed in a distant, blue corner of the country, two governors announced a bi-state partnership to boost economic development.  Take that, GOP.

Thursday saw the vassals stand against their lords, as janitors took to the streets of downtown Portland, picketing for the right to unionize.  The lord in question--Servicemaster--cackled a gleeful denial that it had tried to intimidate the janitors.  Better-dressed vassals mounted a thin charge in the US Senate, mustering only 36 votes against the architect of American torture as US Attorney General nominee Alberto Gonzales sailed to confirmation.  He cackled as well, joking to dissenting senators to watch out, or he'd  go "old school" on their asses.

Oregonians witnessed the first land grab in decades on Friday, as Yamhill County became Oregon's first jurisdiction to approve Measure 37-related waivers.  The six parcels are now ready for development, never mind what the neighbors or planning rules say.  From Washington, the latest jobs report arrived, wheezing.  The brief boost to employment seen this summer appears to be over.  But there was some good news: unemployment is at a 3-year low, thanks to growing enervation from job-seekers unable to find new jobs who keep falling off the unemployment rolls

And as an amusing period on an unamusing week, former Oregon congressman Wes Cooley was found guilty of fraud by a St. Louis jury.  Cooley's defense included the argument that, due to strokes, he couldn't remember the past 15 years.  But Cooley's act--honed in Oregon when he lied about his residency, his marriage, his law degree, and his military service--didn't fool anyone. Even with a cane as a prop.

  • allehseya (unverified)

    Alarmed moderates wrung their hands and murmured, "but what will George Will say?"

    Absolutely brilliant. The entirety of the post, I mean (the one line above just made me cough up my tea in laughter)....

    I think you should keep doing the Week in Review -- with the same voice - the same tone - the same whatever you Daily Show type pundits with a penchant for english, grammar and post modern criticism call it.

  • (Show?)

    Thanks. Yeah, this is a trial balloon in style and substance. It's my hope to keep it going for a few weeks and re-evaluate then.

  • Tenskwatawa (unverified)

    The "style ..." reads like my own torturing-to-read intensely dense sentences, carrying all the context folded over and packed tight just to substantiate a single simple point (because it can't be relied that the reader comes equipped with the background information from which a point is built and made). I love it.

    The "...and substance" is not strong enough for as much as the writer could say given what is known. Which is the same criticism I have of Al Franken et alii, and Michael Kinsley, and so many 'afraid of offending' leftie writers. Look, fact is the Oregon GOP is rife with criminality -- naming Doyle and Scott and Mannix and Minnis and more -- where grounds exist for Atty.Gen. office investigation, then indictment, then trial. 9/11 was planned and conducted by veep Cheney, (as documented in "Crossing the Rubicon"), and charges of mass murder complicity are properly due, from a new A.G. who himself (Gonzalez) is liable for war crime charges based only on his memos obviating U.S. honor of the Geneva Convention, as can same war crime charges be brought against Rumsfeld on down the military chains. The Oregonian's phony war boosterism puts the blood of every killed and maimed Oregon Guard casualty on the (various) editor's and publisher's hands, and wipes it on the wages of employees there who 'just have to have a job.'

    I mean 'substance' means substance, not circumstance. Matter, not titter tee-hee. Why can't Phil Stanford get traction on re-activating the Michael Franke murder investigation, righting the miscarriage of justice in framing their stooge and reaming out every state employee and others involved or knowing and keeping silence? Consider, for example: What if the money Doyle did not pay for campaign services is also not in his personal bank account? Wherever it went, then, is the people Doyle protects by falling on his sword. More or less as is said, he is "low-level" -- but the money isn't, where did it go? (If they looked at and found it in his personal account, publish that account. Not publishing his account statement leaves the possibility to consider that the sixty-long -- or is it eighty? -- did not go to him.)

    I second the motion: Keep doing Week in Review, same voice, same tone, sharper, sharper, sharpen your tools until it cuts loose from blandishing 'criticism' and starts puncturing skin and spilling out the guts for public and legal indictment. Left or right, lib or con, I don't distinguish: Crimes have been staged and the criminals walk free. Bush is a liar and traitor. The Pentagon is the Third Reich. Homeland Security is the Stazi. If 'they' have defense against such charges let them present it. Knowledge in the public domain has a right to bring the charges.

  • susan (unverified)

    bring it on

  • iggi (unverified)

    good man...i like it.

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