Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Weekend Freewayblogging

I hung a few signs over the holiday weekend.

Sadly, the numbers on these signs had to be updated...

Thursday, November 23, 2006

More Turkey, Please

Bush wishes military members happy Thanksgiving
WASHINGTON (Reuters) -

President George W. Bush, who is spending Thanksgiving Day at the Camp David presidential retreat, telephoned 10 members of the U.S. military on Thursday to wish them a happy holiday.

I think he missed a great photo opportunity and morale-builder by phoning it in.

Happy Thanksgiving

While we're all stuffing ourselves with turkey, cranberry sauce and potatoes, I figured I'd do a search on the True Meaning of Thanksgiving. A brief search turned up this gem from Daniel N. Paul...

Much of America's understanding of the early relationship between the Indian and the European is conveyed through the story of Thanksgiving. Proclaimed a holiday in 1863 by Abraham Lincoln, this fairy tale of a feast was allowed to exist in the American imagination pretty much untouched until 1970, the 350th anniversary of the landing of the Pilgrims. That is when Frank B. James, president of the Federated Eastern Indian League, prepared a speech for a Plymouth banquet that exposed the Pilgrims for having committed, among other crimes, the robbery of the graves of the Wampanoags. He wrote:

"We welcomed you, the white man, with open arms, little knowing that it was the beginning of the end; that before 50 years were to pass, the Wampanoag would no longer be a free people."

But white Massachusetts officials told him he could not deliver such a speech and offered to write him another. Instead, James declined to speak, and on Thanksgiving Day hundreds of Indians from around the country came to protest. It was the first National Day of Mourning, a day to mark the losses Native Americans suffered as the early settlers prospered. This true story of "Thanksgiving" is what whites did not want Mr. James to tell.

What Really Happened in Plymouth in 1621?

According to a single-paragraph account in the writings of one Pilgrim, a harvest feast did take place in Plymouth in 1621, probably in mid-October, but the Indians who attended were not even invited. Though it later became known as "Thanksgiving," the Pilgrims never called it that. And amidst the imagery of a picnic of interracial harmony is some of the most terrifying bloodshed in New World history.

The Pilgrim crop had failed miserably that year, but the agricultural expertise of the Indians had produced twenty acres of corn, without which the Pilgrims would have surely perished. The Indians often brought food to the Pilgrims, who came from England ridiculously unprepared to survive and hence relied almost exclusively on handouts from the overly generous Indians-thus making the Pilgrims the western hemisphere's first class of welfare recipients. The Pilgrims invited the Indian sachem Massasoit to their feast, and it was Massasoit, engaging in the tribal tradition of equal sharing, who then invited ninety or more of his Indian brothers and sisters-to the annoyance of the 50 or so ungrateful Europeans. No turkey, cranberry sauce or pumpkin pie was served; they likely ate duck or geese and the venison from the 5 deer brought by Massasoit. In fact, most, if notall, of the food was most likely brought and prepared by the Indians, whose 10,000-year familiarity with the cuisine of the region had kept the whites alive up to that point.

The Pilgrims wore no black hats or buckled shoes-these were the silly inventions of artists hundreds of years since that time. These lower-class Englishmen wore brightly colored clothing, with one of their church leaders recording among his possessions "1 paire of greene drawers." Contrary to the fabricated lore of storytellers generations since, no Pilgrims prayed at the meal, and the supposed good cheer and fellowship must have dissipated quickly once the Pilgrims brandished their weaponry in a primitive display of intimidation. What's more, the Pilgrims consumed a good deal of home brew. In fact, each Pilgrim drank at least a half gallon of beer a day, which they preferred even to water. This daily inebriation led their governor, William Bradford, to comment on his people's "notorious sin," which included their "drunkenness and uncleanliness" and rampant "sodomy"...

The Pilgrims of Plymouth, The Original Scalpers

Contrary to popular mythology the Pilgrims were no friends to the local Indians........

You know you want more. Click here for the rest of the story.

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

More audience...more signs

Moderate gas prices boost holiday travel
By KRISTEN DE GROOT, Associated Press Writer

Long lines formed at airports well before daybreak Wednesday, and some drivers in the South saw winter hit the roads early as millions of Americans made the annual dash home for Thanksgiving. The AAA estimated that 38.3 million people would travel 50 miles or more for Thanksgiving — up a million from last year.

I think you all know what this means for me....

That's right, it's the holiday rush for us freewaybloggers. I need to make a ton of these things and get them put up over the weekend. It's a good thing I have four days to do it.

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Go Keith, Go!

When is this man going to say something I don't agree with? But more importantly, can we get him on the ballot in '08?

Kieth Olbermann Special Comment - Bush on Vietnam

Hat tip to my father for this one.

Saturday, November 18, 2006

Weekend Music Video

Come out ye Black & Tans

Friday, November 17, 2006

Bushism of the Week

"You know, when I campaigned here in 2000, I said, I want to be a war President. No President wants to be a war President, but I am one."

--George W. Bush, Des Moines, Iowa, Oct. 26, 2006

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Happy Anniversary

Well, by checking the trusty old archive calendar, I see it's been one year since I first breathed life into PTCruiser. Along the way, it's taken a few twists and turns, had several hits and misses, and overall has been a tremendous outlet for getting things off my chest.

I'm going to be putting together some sort of a "best of..." section over on the sidebar, so keep your eyes open for that. Knowing my schedule, that may take some time. Then again, thinking of how much bad stuff I've written, it really shouldn't be too long of a list.

In closing, I'd like to thank a few people, most of whom I've met along the way...

A big thanks to my friend Spocko, of Spocko's Brain, who showed me how to take the training wheels off of this thing and really get readers to come here and take a peek.

Thanks also to Scarlet (aka The Freewayblogger), who proved to me that it's not just about what I write but rather how many hundreds of thousands of people I can get to read it.

Special thanks to Enigma of Watergate Summer, at whose "Enigma Cafe" I found, and continue to find, so many interesting bloggers and readers of my own blog.

To PoP of Morning Martini, who inspires me every day to write from the heart.

And thanks to my father, who made me passionate about politics and speaking out for what I believe is right.

To all my readers, thank you for making this experience a constant source of enjoyment.

I even ordered up a special fireworks show for the occasion. Enjoy....

Fireworks Show

Monday, November 13, 2006

The Bridge

Over the weekend I took my teenage daughter to see the movie, "The Bridge", a documentary about suicides on the Golden Gate Bridge.

I found the movie to be both haunting and powerful. It makes your heart skip a beat when you see people climb over that railing, the only thing separating them from a plunge into the cold water far below. But even more chilling is the interviews with the relatives and friends of the jumpers.

While I sat there incredulous at what level of despair and pain these tortured souls must have been at to end their lives, my daughter and I both agreed that what was even more shocking was the families' and friends' acceptance of what was about to happen to these people. It was as if they too were at the end of their ropes; that they felt powerless to do anything and that it was something that was simply going to happen, just as surely as the sun was going to rise the next day. I guess it's something that most folks wouldn't undedrstand unless they were in that situation themselves.

"The Bridge" was both fascinating and disturbing at the same time, and while it was difficult to watch, it opened up a new line of communication between my daughter and I. For that reason alone, it was worth it.

The Bridge - Trailer

Saturday, November 11, 2006

Weekend Music Video

When I was in the Air Force, I was in a band with three other airmen. We played a few times at a local bar and had a couple of outdoor concerts on-base. This was one of the songs on our playlist. I still have the bass line memorized. Definitely one of my favorites, this tune reminds me of good friends and good times. Enjoy...

INXS - Devil inside

Friday, November 10, 2006

Bushism of the Week

"The only way we can win is to leave before the job is done."

--George W. Bush, Greeley, Colo., Nov. 4, 2006

Wednesday, November 08, 2006


I hung this sign up today after hearing the great news during my lunch break. I have to admit, knowing that this would be my last "Rumsfailed" sign gave me far more satisfaction than all the others put together.

"Don't let the door hit ya on the ass on yer way out there, Rummy."

Did I Vote?

Yes I did.

Did I vote Democrat? Hell no!

I voted Peace and Freedom Party across the board. And I'll tell you why.

As much as I deplore a government run by Republicans, I can't imagine there will be much change with the Democrats now running the House and possibly the Senate. Case in point, Nancy Pelosi and her pledge not to pursue impeachment on 60 Minutes several weeks ago.

While I congratulate my Democrat readers out there on their victory, I will be holding your candidates' feet to the fire now that they control Congress.

I found an article in the SF Bay Guardian that got my blood boiling on this issue....

Pelosi's perplexing pledge
Democrats must pursue impeachment if they want the moral authority they'll need to fix the nation's biggest problems

.....Pelosi, the House Democratic leader who may well surf a wave of voter resentment against the Bush administration and Republican misrule into the speaker's office after the votes are counted Nov. 7, bluntly declared that it would not be the purpose of a Democratic House to restore the rule of law, despite the fact that more than three dozen members of her own caucus are calling for an inquiry into possibly impeachable offenses by the administration, led by Rep. John Conyers of Michigan, who is in line to become chair of the Judiciary Committee if the Democrats retake the House.

"Impeachment is off the table," Pelosi declared.

"And that’s a pledge?" asked CBS’s Lesley Stahl.

"Well, it’s a pledge in the — yes, I mean, it’s a pledge," Pelosi responded. "Of course it is. It is a waste of time."

A waste of time?

Not in the eyes of the American people. A majority of those surveyed last fall in a national poll by Ipsos Public Affairs, the firm that measures public opinion on behalf of the Associated Press, agreed with the statement "If President Bush did not tell the truth about his reasons for going to war with Iraq, Congress should consider holding him accountable by impeaching him."......
Full story here.

While many may see my tactic as "throwing away my vote", I view it more in terms of using my vote to support a party that more accurately represents me.

I cannot vote for a party that refuses to stand up to this tyrannical administration. Period. Sorry, but there aren't nearly enough Feingolds and Conyers in the Democratic Party.

Monday, November 06, 2006

Live Free or Die

These powerful words are not only the motto for the State of New Hampshire, they are a battle cry once uttered in 1776 by Patrick Henry, one of the most influential (and radical) advocates of the American Revolution and republicanism, especially in his denunciations of corruption in government officials and his defense of historic rights. Mr. Henry was most remembered for his speech to the Virginia House of Burgesses, in which he said, "Give me liberty or give me death." With both George Washington and Thomas Jefferson in attendance, this speech was credited as the reason for the committing of Virginia's troops to the Revolutionary War.

In more modern times, and in other parts of the world, these words can carry a very sinister meaning. In places such as Iraq, they can herald utter destruction and death, ramming "democracy" down their collective throat with an imperialist fistful of shock and awe...

For me, the words are a way to express to anyone and everyone who drives by and reads them, that I am here and I will be heard. Far too many good people gave up their lives so that I would have not only the right but the responsibility to voice my displeasure at a government that fails to represent 'We the People'.

To quote General Emiliano Zapata, "It is better to die on your feet than to live on your knees!"

Saturday, November 04, 2006


Most thrilling freewayblog yet...

As I headed home from work yesterday, I looked in the back of my car and noticed the pile of signs laying back there. They were practically begging to be hung up on the freeway. I figured since I'd had a great day at the end of a great week, what could be better than to hang a sign for all the folks stuck in traffic on US 101?

I headed over a few blocks from where I work to hang a sign on one of my favorite pedestrian bridges. Locals will recognize it as the blue bridge by the Vermont Street off-ramp. I parked, got out of the car, opened the rear hatch and selected the lucky winner to be hung today. No need for duct tape or bungee cords for this freewayblog. This bridge has the added convenience of having a double fence (with the inner fence at waist height), which allows us freewaybloggers to simply slide the sign between the two layers of fencing and head off on our merry way.

The traffic was really moving at a crawl today. While proudly nestling the sign into position, I heard a car horn honking below. I stood up and waved in the general direction of the familiar sound. I often get honks while hanging signs on this bridge as you are really exposed while educating the public here.

I turned and started to walk back towards the car, comforted by the thought of how many people would read that sign today when I heard a voice coming over a loud-speaker. The only word I picked out clearly was, "sign". I looked down at the traffic and, to my horror, spotted a CHP cruiser sweeping under the bridge like a shark hunting for hapless fishermen under a tiny boat. My heart skipped a beat as I saw the patrolman tear down the off-ramp, obviously intent on catching me in the act. I sprinted for the car, jumped in, started the engine, and floored it up the street, my eyes glued to the rear-view mirror. That off-ramp is so close to the bridge, I knew for certain he'd catch up to me. As I made a left and then a right, I headed toward a narrow winding street that I knew I'd lose him on.

As I came off the twisting residential road, I calmed down enough to decide that I'd loop back around onto the freeway and drive back to see if he'd taken my sign down. He may have seen me, but I was sure he hadn't spotted the car.

As I approached the bridge, I realized he hadn't taken the sign down yet. So I snapped a photo of it....

The only thing I can figure is he must have been driving around looking for me in that area.

Now you'd think that after an experience like that, I'd be too nervous to do any more freewayblogging. And you'd be wrong. I drove a few miles down the highway towards home and hung another sign in Daly City. This one right here, to be exact....

Man, this stuff is way too much fun. I think my freewayblogging addiction level just went up a few notches.

Friday, November 03, 2006

Weekend Music Video

Rage Against the Machine: Sleep Now In The Fire

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Bus Bombing

Ever wonder how the graffiti gets on the bus? Here's how it happens in San Francisco...


Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Melanie Morgan Hates Black People

The following article has been surgically removed from my favorite local blog, Spocko's Brain...

Melanie Morgan accuses SF Chronicle of manipulating photo to make Richard Pombo look black

The San Francisco Chronicle has been accused by Melanie Morgan, of ABC Radio Disney on station KSFO 560 AM, of altering photos of Richard Pombo and playing the race card to influence elections.

I sent the letter below to the Chronicle and to Jim Romenesko. I also sent it to some friends who forwarded it onto others in the industry. Although Romenesko ignored it, the Chronicle might want to look into this some more. Sure I'm a tiny blog and what I say is often ignored, but Morgan was on national TV last week and is on the second largest talk radio station in the Bay Area. She calls for journalists to be hanged, she accuses photojournalists of doctoring and shading photos. Management of the journalists and photojournalists need to defend themselves. The LA Times did demanded a correction from Morgan when she claimed they doctored their photos, so why is the Chronicle ignoring her comment? Could it be they don't want to upset the focus of their Chronicle Magazine puff piece?

Maybe I should send this to Michelle Malkin, she loves to hear about photo manipulation and the race card game is right down her alley. Of course when you listen to Morgan's accusation you have to wonder, who has a race problem, here?

Sent October 25, 2006
Jim Romenesko
Poynter Online
Dear Jim:

Yesterday Melanie Morgan of KSFO said that photographer Jamie Rose (or the photo editor at the San Francisco Chronicle) purposely shaded a photograph of California Congressman Richard Pombo to make him look like a black man. (audio link 1:01. Comment at 28 seconds) (link to SF Chronicle article and photos in question)

Morgan submitted no proof for this accusation.

The Chronicle has been accused of altering photos and playing the race card to influence elections. This is a very serious accusation. I hope the Chronicle takes it seriously. The Chronicle considers Morgan important enough to put her on the cover of their magazine, so when she says that the Jamie Rose photo of Richard Pombo "...is shaded to the point where it looks like he is a BLACK MAN." they will probably investigate and see if anything happened.

And if Jamie Rose or his photo editor has shaded the photo then he probably will be suspended or fired. Because that is what newspapers do when they find out that a photographer has manipulated photos for political purposes.

Bloggers have been lionized for catching a Reuter's photographer altering a photo. Photographers have been fired for this kind of offense. Jamie Rose's reputation has been cast in doubt.

But if they find out that nothing was done to the photo and Morgan's accusation, broadcast on the public's airwaves to hundreds of thousands of people in the Bay Area, is defamation, then maybe there should be some consequences to Morgan.

Morgan has a history of accusing photographers of doctoring photos, (see my letter to the LA Times and their demand for a response) but clearly since there were no consequences from her previous accusation she just did it again.

Morgan talked on MSNBC's Hardball about the responsibility of being a journalist as if she still was one. What would happen to a broadcast journalist for ABC Radio (KSFO's parent company) who publicly accused the SF Chronicle of photojournalism misconduct and they were wrong? Would they get reprimanded by their boss? Forced to apologize? Fined? Fired? Sued?

Journalists, photojournalists and their management must stand up to these radio hosts in clearly delineated situations like I have listed or else the rhetoric escalates. Morgan's co-host, Lee Rogers, didn't like what the AP wrote so he called for the AP reporters to commit mass suicide. (audio link)Did anyone at the AP ask for an apology? I contacted the management, they heard the audio clip, but as far as I know nothing happened.

Melanie Morgan called for the hanging death of Bill Keller and journalists at the NY Times, LA Times, Washington Post and the Wall Street Journal on public airwaves. She may have qualified her comments on TV or to the Chronicle reporter, but broadcast ON THE AIR she just said, "Get 'em. Hang 'em. (audio link)

When someone calls for the death of journalists on broadcast radio it should mean something. Does the journalist community think, as Morgan seems to, that executing Bill Keller is funny? (Listen as Morgan laughs with Ann Coulter about it)

Is it hilarious to ABC Radio journalists when they hear jokes about Bill Keller being electrocuted on KSFO? (Listen as Morgan laughs at her co-host's imitation of Keller's death in the electric chair).

Don't like a photo? Let the death threats flow. Listen to another sick joke at KSFO where the punch line is a photographer's assassination (audio link). It must be fine with KSFO/ABC Radio's management since they continue to support these hosts. But is this fine with the Chronicle? I've concluded that the WSJ, who's own Glenn Simpson was sentenced to death by Morgan, must have no problem with it because they have continued to sponsor a segment on Morgan's show.

Finally, I would like to point out an underlying racist attitude in Morgan's comment. I encourage you to listen to the tone of her comment. She practically spits out the words "A BLACK MAN" as if Pombo being black would be a TERRIBLE thing. And that the MOST horrible thing that the Chronicle could do, in it's alleged photo manipulation, would be to turn Pombo into a BLACK MAN. Why? Because people would not vote for a black man over a white man? Because Republicans don't vote for black men? Because a black man would never be a Republican? That certainly sounds like the views of someone prejudiced against black people's ability to govern to me.

I'm sure that Morgan will claim that she are Rogers aren't racist. That they are just joking with their calls for the violent death of journalists and others. That, to give another example, they didn't know that when Lee Rogers talked aboutshooting a man between the eyes and torturing him by attaching electrodes to his testicles that they were talking about a black man.

What a proud moment in broadcasting that must have been for Disney. Will KSFO/ABC Radio/Disney management want to proudly proclaim that their radio hosts don't discriminate when calling for the death of others on the air? I'll bet the sale of ABC Radio to Citadel Broadcasting can't come soon enough. Maybe Citadel's chairman and CEO, Farid Suleman, will want to consider KSFO as one of the 11 stations out of 122 he has to cut loose to meet the terms of the purchase of ABC Radio from Disney.



Frank J. Vega -Publisher and President
Phil Bronstein - Executive Vice President and Editor Gary L. Anderson - Executive Vice President
John Hare, ABC Radio
Dan Rosenheim, CBS5
ABC Listens, ABC7
KTVU News, 2