Friday, September 08, 2006

My least favorite part was when you spit poison in the obnoxious fat guy's face!

Now this is a decent review of "The Path to 911."

An appalling secondary concern is the tone makes almost every pre-9/11 American look like a fool.

Look, there's a security guard yawning while terrorists plant the 1993 bomb at the World Trade Center. How dare a security guard work while tired.

Oh, hey, there's an airline agent checking in a 9/11 terrorist even though he has a carry-on bag. Stupid airline agents.

Excuse us all, writer Cyrus Nowrasteh and director David L. Cunningham, for not acting like Hitler Youth in the glory days before ordinary Americans knew commercial planes could be turned into missiles.


Cheap emotions are on orange alert. Of all the people who died in the 1993 attack, who does the camera focus on? Ding-ding-ding, you are a winner if you said "a pregnant woman rubbing her belly."

If you don't have the time to read the full commission report then I recommend this graphic novel adaption. For some reason the graphic novel format provides a much easier way to get one's head around all the convergent timelines and personalities behind the scenes in the 911 attack.

Thursday, September 07, 2006

Will you tell me where you think the accident will take place and I'll make sure I'm there.

Just a little reminder as we find ourselves knee-deep in conservative 911 revisionism over the next couple of days. It may come as a shock to the Rush Limbaughs of the world but the country actually formed a commission and held *gasp* hearings in the wake of the World Trade Center attacks. The commission's final report was itself a summary of much of the testimony and investigative work that it implemented.

Some highlights from just that one day of public testimony covered in the March, 2004 Washington Post article I cite above:

President Bush's top counterterrorism adviser warned seven days before the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorism attacks that hundreds of people could die in a strike by the al Qaeda network and that the administration was not doing enough to combat the threat, the commission investigating the attacks disclosed yesterday.

Richard A. Clarke, who served as a senior White House counterterrorism official under three successive presidents, wrote to national security adviser Condoleezza Rice on Sept. 4, 2001, urging "policymakers to imagine a day after a terrorist attack, with hundreds of Americans dead at home and abroad, and ask themselves what they could have done earlier," according to a summary of the letter included in a commission staff report. Clarke also cites the same plea in his new book.


The CIA now says that a controversial August 2001 briefing summarizing potential attacks on the United States by al Qaeda was not requested by President Bush, as Rice and others had long claimed.

(In fact Rice held a news conference JUST to claim that the PDB was requested by Bush. Liar, liar...)


Commission investigators disclosed that during the Clinton administration, the president and other White House officials signed a series of secret orders for covert action that, according to the top Clinton aides, authorized the killing of bin Laden by CIA proxies.


In the summer of 2001, veteran counterterrorism officers privy to reports on al Qaeda threats "were so worried about an impending disaster that one of them told us that they considered resigning and going public with their concerns," according to one of two staff reports issued by the commission yesterday. Senior CIA officials were also frustrated by some Bush appointees who were not familiar with surges in terrorist threat information and questioned their veracity, the report said.

And it goes on and on. Point is the producers of the ABC movie seem to want to pretend there was no 911 Commission while claiming, at the same time, that the work of the Commission supports the "truthiness" of their film.

He passed away two weeks ago and one week ago he bought the land. That's unusual.

The "Path to 911" has been pretty much done to death around the blogsphere. I share much of the blogsphere's concern about the film's accuracy and the Scholastic tie-ins.

This Washington Post article from this morning on the backlash driven by former Clinton aides is interesting, especially this quote from Producer Mark Platt:

If individuals feel they're wrongly portrayed, that's obviously of concern. We've portrayed the essence of the truth of these events. Our intention was not in any way to be political or present a point of view."

Ah, the "essence of the truth." I believe Stephen Colbert has coined a word for that.

But what really gets me isn't so much the fictional stuff they've left out of the "docudrama" as the real stuff they've left out. Bush's lack of action in the moments of the actual attack and his running-and-hiding act immediately following are notably missing.

Luckily, we at Farber College have a crack film studies department who were able to put together a segment to include in the ABC docudrama. If I can only convince the network to make the change...

(Disclaimer: this docudrama is fictional but it is based on fact. It is intended to convey the actual truth about the past by making stuff up about the past. Please see our educational supplement if you or your kids have questions. )

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Atlantia Death Squadron, Attack!

Fly my pretties to see Battlestar Galactica Webisode One.

(Will be updated by Sci-Fi every Tuesday and Thursday.)

This day does not belong to one man but to all. Let us together rebuild this world that we may share in the days of peace.

I would hope this would make you feel as warm and fuzzy as it does me. The 25 year old heir to the throne of the Bhutaan crown will abdicate in favor of a constitutional democracy.

Bhutan in 2004 year unveiled a 34-point Constitution and the same was sent to some 530,000 citizens for their views. The Constitution is expected to be ratified after a referendum.

Once adopted, the Constitution will replace a royal decree of 1953 giving the monarch absolute power.

I know- it seems unpossible. Democracy spreading without the Untited States having invaded and forced it upon the country. Who would of thunk it possible?

BTW - that new Constitution was heavily influenced by our own including our Bill of Rights. Oddly enough I checked on whether "freedom fries" were sold at any eatery in within the borders of Bhutan and it turns out they aren't.

I guess some ideas are just a little more attractive than others.

Monday, September 04, 2006

Running a farm, working like a mule every day with no guarantee anything will ever come of it. This is bravery.

Happy Labor Day!

In recognition of some of my favorite fictional heroes (and one semi-fictional hero we just lost today) ----