“Punting the Pundits” is an Open Thread. It is a selection of editorials and opinions from around the news medium and the internet blogs. The intent is to provide a forum for your reactions and opinions, not just to the opinions presented, but to what ever you find important.
Thanks to ek hornbeck, click on the link and you can access all the past “Punting the Pundits”.
Verlyn Klinkenborg: John Lennon
I don’t remember how I heard that John Lennon had been shot. Thirty years ago, on a warm December night in Manhattan, it was suddenly, in the air, on the street – with only a brief, grim gap between news of the shooting at the Dakota, on 72nd Street and news of his death at Roosevelt Hospital. I called my brother in California and then sat in the stairwell of a building at 27th and Third, numb and grieving, like everyone else.
We remember what we remember of Lennon, and of that night. When I was young, he was the only adult that mattered outside my family – the Beatle of Beatles. I loved his wit; his irony; his “Help!”; his urgent, reedy voice; his unceasing transformations. Like everyone else who loved him, I can’t help grieving, even now, for all the transformations we lost 30 years ago when John Lennon was only 40.
John Nichols: Organizing for America Sacrifices Credibility, Harms Obama, By Talking Up Misguided Assault on Public Employees
Organizing for America, the online community of campaigners for Barack Obama’s 2008 presidential run that evolved into a Democratic National Committee-aligned “activist” network is undermining its own credibility — and, ultimately, harming the president– by attempting to gin up support for Obama administration initiatives that Obama backers did not support in 2008 and do not support now.
While OFA, the succesor organization to the “Obama for America” campaign organization, was a disappointing player during the health care and banking reform debates, it has now begun to inflict actual harm – not just to progressive ideals but to the long-term prospects of maintaining what remains of Obama’s political base.
OFA, so silent on the compromise the Obama administration is trying to gin up to extend tax breaks for the rich, has found something it is for: cutting the pay of federal workers.
Julian Assange: The truth will always win
In 1958 a young Rupert Murdoch, then owner and editor of Adelaide’s The News, wrote: “In the race between secrecy and truth, it seems inevitable that truth will always win.”
His observation perhaps reflected his father Keith Murdoch’s expose that Australian troops were being needlessly sacrificed by incompetent British commanders on the shores of Gallipoli. The British tried to shut him up but Keith Murdoch would not be silenced and his efforts led to the termination of the disastrous Gallipoli campaign.
Nearly a century later, WikiLeaks is also fearlessly publishing facts that need to be made public.
I grew up in a Queensland country town where people spoke their minds bluntly. They distrusted big government as something that could be corrupted if not watched carefully. The dark days of corruption in the Queensland government before the Fitzgerald inquiry are testimony to what happens when the politicians gag the media from reporting the truth.
These things have stayed with me. WikiLeaks was created around these core values. The idea, conceived in Australia, was to use internet technologies in new ways to report the truth.