The American Heritage Dictionary says that one meaning for the word extortion is "the criminal offense of using one's official position or powers to obtain property, funds, or patronage to which one is not entitled." It can also mean "the exaction of an exorbitant price." No nationally known and respected political pundits are using that word to describe the political maneuvering that the Republicans are using to get the Democrats to agree to some harsh budget cuts. One or two radical bloggers who are jealous of the media attention given to the nobility of journalism, such as Bart the Bright, might bandy that word about recklessly in the hopes of landing a guest expert gig on a fair and balanced political TV debate program, but such rogues would also be prone to be card carrying members of the Associated Secret Society of Konspiracy Investigation Scholars and Students (You figure out their acronym) and the transparency of their grandstanding attempt would be apparent.
The National Lampoon magazine cover that depicted a cowering dog with a gun aimed at his head had the headline: "Buy this magazine or we'll shoot the dog!" That was a funny example of extortion but to use that word with regard to what the Republicans are doing is reprehensible.
Is it extortion if the threat of reprisals is only implied? At this point, the Democrats have to ask themselves one more question: "Do I feel lucky?"
Is the military action against Libya listed as an active "war"? In all the excitement of the Arab Spring, we've kinda lost track of the exact count. Is it two or thee active wars?
The Scientists have learned how to manipulate the media to their own advantage by using polar bears (Ursis Maritimus) to extort alarmist reactions from the journalists and now they are doubling down with a crazy story about cell phones causing sterility in human males. Really? "Don't worry, baby, we won't need a condom because we are protected by my constant cell phone use!"?
Recently Karl Rove was a guest on Shaun Hannity's radio program and when he was asked to evaluate all the Republicans trying to become their party's next Presidential candidate, he forgot JEB Bush. Rove has worked for the Bush family since 1973 and he forgot JEB. How come journalists think Rove is a master of political strategy if he can forget JEB? . . . Say, you don't think that was what the real political pundits call a "ploy," do ya?
As the 2011 anniversary of D-Day approaches, the USA's population of homeless is growing even as the number of empty homes that have been foreclosed increases rapidly.
When President Obama said that the bombing of Libya to protect its citizens from a ruthless leader wouldn't last for days or weeks, was he trying to say that he knew then that it would take months?