The Nossiter Net
The net that shall enmesh them all
Edited, Written, and Published by Josh Nossiter
Dear New York Times
Sunday, August 17th, 2008
The Nossiter Net is cast  to snare some of  the riper rascalities of the day.  Comments?  Send a letter to the editor.
Letters to the editor that will never ever run in the New York Times:

To the Editor:

Michael Falcone's depiction of John McCain on Georgia [McCain Displays Credentials as Obama Relaxes, 8/14/2008] -- "tough," "forceful," his "fluency," his "aura of commander in chief," read like McCain campaign literature. The parroting of Cokie Roberts on Obama's "exotic" Hawaii vacation did nothing to dispel the impression.

But is McCain to be taken seriously? Wikipedia says his Georgia expertise was cribbed from the online encyclopedia. McCain's chief foreign policy advisor was until recently a lobbyist for the Georgian government. And where Falcone found toughness and forcefulness, the President of Georgia himself scorned McCain's saber rattling, advising him to swap empty words for deeds.

On the other hand a Hawaiian beach might be good for the bellicose McCain's blood pressure. It would also give him time to read up on Georgia beyond its Wikipedia entry. As for any excess exoticism, that's a matter of perspective. Take a Hawaiian to New York's Brighton Beach and the first whiff of borscht would tell him he wasn't on Waikiki any more.

To the Editor:

Obama's Berlin speech "would have made Niebuhr sick to his stomach? David Brooks [Innocent Abroad, David Brooks 7/25/2008] stands the truth on its head. Reinhold Niebuhr once told Mike Wallace that nuclear age evangelists who insist "we mustn’t hope for a summit meeting, we must hope in Christ" deal in irrelevancies or worse. Niebuhr would have applauded Obama's Berlin call for a dialogue of all with all. What would he have made of Brooks' unwavering enthusiasm for a Bush administration that for over seven years has chosen mindless violence, or the threat of it, over rational discourse, all in the name of answering to a "higher father"? As the son of a German immigrant Niebuhr may well have had a stomach able to cope with bratwurst and pumpernickel, but I suspect he would have found Brooks entirely indigestible.

To the Editor:

First Gail Collins on Saturday and now Thomas Friedman [Thomas Friedman, 7/23/2008 "All Hail McBama"] today; McCain was right on "the surge", Obama wrong. Katie Couric on CBS and Lou Dobbs on CNN are among the many others parroting this McCain-Bush fable. The facts: the so-called surge wasn't a brilliant new tactic because it merely restored troop numbers to previous levels. And violence in Iraq declined somewhat because Moktada al Sadr declared a Shiite cease-fire, and because we started bribing Sunnis with weapons and money to fight not against us but for us. Both changes in the Iraqi landscape took place long before we sent any additional troops.

The Bush administration, its supporters and mouthpieces, and now its would-be successors too, present a self-serving myth about events that ignores the facts but that nevertheless reverberates unquestioned around the media echo chamber. I've seen this movie many times before (The Smoking Gun and The Mushroom Cloud was one previous title) and I didn't like it the first time. Of course it takes less space to write "the surge is working" than to prose on about al Sadr and the "Sunni Awakening" but this reader at least expects the New York Times to make room for the truth.

To the Editor,
Your report on the popularity of hymenoplasties among Muslim women in Europe [In Europe, Debate Over Islam and Virginity, 6/11/08] sheds light on a practice that reasonable people of any faith can only find perfectly abhorrent. On the other hand, the phenomenon does give actual meaning to the old expression "almost a virgin.".
©Joshua C. Nossiter, 2008

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A NOTE TO READERS ***Update***
Another three week plus hiatus, from April 30th until May 23rd, again due to Yahoo Geocities dismal service.

There was nothing new at The Nossiter Net between March 3rd and April 26th, 2007, nearly eight weeks.  The reason:  tech sabotage. Yahoo Geocities, the host for this site, denied access for the entire period.  At one point, they even managed to lose all the files.  In many discussions with Yahoo staff, no clear explanation was forthcoming.  No one seemed able to fix the problem.  Ruling out the possibility of Dubbya’s revenge, I finally wrote to Mr. Terry Semel, Chairman and CEO of Yahoo! Inc and described the ordeal the page had undergone since the beginning of March.  A week later, a helpful Yahooo engineer named Jason called.  He had my letter before him.  Though he couldn’t do the repairs on on the spot, he promised a fix by the next day.  That was April 26th, nearly two months after shutting me down in the first place.

The Nossiter Net apologizes, which is more than I can say for Yahoo Geocities.


Dubbya's Diry
The Instant Poet
Last Words
Jerome R. Corsi: The Dis-Corsi Code
Bush's Gift to the World
Ticket to Ride the Straight Talk Express
McCain's Diary: Part III
McCain's Diary: Part II
McCain's Diary: Part 1
A Real McShame
Right Lies, All Lies
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VOL. IV, No. 48