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Issue #63

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Features:

Top Ten Hacks of 2004 Election - Matt Taibbi

MEMRI Problems: Was Kerry's Election Bid Lost in Translation?- Chris Riordan

Pick of the Litter: Bottom-Feeding all the Way to the Top

Redwoods Evil, Must Be Destroyed: Bush Wants Some Wood- Kit Smith

Too Cool for School: City Honors Censorship - Al Uthman

Tortures - R - Us - Christopher Lord


Faux-tures:

New Hotel on Baltic Ave: Boon or Burden? - Ian Murphy

10 Tips For Coping with your Dysfunctional Family this Thanksgiving

A Word From Our Sponsors



Departments:

Buffalo in Briefs

BEAST-O-Scopes

Page 3

Separated at Birth?

[sic] - Letters

The Straight Dope w/ Dr Rotten




Entertainment:

Movie Reviews:

Kino Korner

Music Reviews :

Matchbook Romance/Midtown Show - Chris Meister

Goo Goo Dolls DVD - Seamus Gallivan

Elliot Smith CD- Michael Gildea

Odd Couple CD - Ketchup Samurai

BEASTIVITIES

Sports:

Wide Right: Bills could Make Playoffs--in the NFC - Ronnie Roscoe



Comix:

Beast Comix - Ian Murphy

I Witless News - I. Gonzalez

Deep Fried - Jason Yungbluth

Bob the Angry Flower - Stephen Notley





Issue #62

Features:

O Buffalo: Why Move When we can Secede? - Al Uthman

Love or Four Hour Erections: The Choice is Clear - Matt Taibbi

The Falsification and Death Administration: FDA Approval may be Hazardous to your Health - Kit Smith

Meaning of Tripe: Countdown to the Beast's Ten Worst Presidential Election Campaign Hacks of 2004- Matt Taibbi

10 Ultra-Cynical Ways to Beat the Republicans

The Big Rig: This Election was Worse than 2000 - William Rivers Pitt

The Smoldering Fuel Rods of Environmental Justice - Chris Meister


Faux-tures:

The BEAST Interview With God

Who Voted Bush? - A BEAST Quiz

A Word From Our Sponsors



Departments:

Buffalo in Briefs

BEAST-O-Scopes

Page 3

Separated at Birth?

[sic] - Letters

The Straight Dope w/ Dr Rotten




Entertainment:

Movies:

Kino Korner

Sports:

Wide Right: O Captain my Captain - Ronnie Roscoe









Issue #61

Features:

Voting Guide of FEAR

Top 10 Reasons to be TERRIFIED This Halloween - Al Uthman

Onward Christian Assholes: Some Folks Just Can't Wait for the Apocalypse - Matt Taibbi

A Talk With Sam Hoyt - Eric Gauchat

Give 'em Enough Pink Ribbon to Hang Themselves: Breast Cancer? Chemical Firm Supplies Cause & Cure - Kit Smith


Faux-tures:

Our Election Campaign Sponsors

The BEAST Scary Election Fun Page!

Over 60 Million Killed in Huge Fucking Flu Epidemic - Josh Righter



Departments:

Buffalo in Briefs

BEAST-O-Scopes

The Straight Dope w/ Dr Rotten

Page 3

Separated at Birth?

[sic] - Letters




Entertainment:

Movies:

Kino Korner

Music:

Album Reviews: Interpol, Mos Def

Sports:

Wide Right: Going Double-Negative - Ronnie Roscoe







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Archives--Old BEASTs

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#59

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2004 The Beast

Redwoods Evil, Must Be Destroyed
Want Some Wood? Bush Is Here To Help
Kit Smith

Nature is a bad and inconvenient thing. It must be stopped. That's why so many of us environmental scientists voted for Bush. He recognizes that endangered species are tasty, that Yellowstone is the most awesome place for snowmobiling in the whole world, and that those horrible California Redwoods are home to Satan himself.

The Redwood forests are literally the oldest living things on earth. What good can possibly come of that? Luckily, now that Bush has re-finagled his way into the White House, his Healthy Forests Restoration Act, known in the inner circle as the No Tree Left Behind Initiative, will not be reversed.

California's trees are nothing but problems anyway. Recall October of 2003: wildfires raged outside Los Angeles and San Diego. Then-governor Gray Davis had in fact tried to prevent these fires, which were deemed inevitable-a bark-beetle infestation had claimed much of California's pine forests. This standing deadwood was then subjected to one of the driest summers in recorded history. Davis appealed to "President" Bush in April for funding to cut this deadwood. The request went unanswered until late October, when the fires were already raging-and it was denied.

Bush has odd luck that way. Just as the WTC bombings gave him an excuse to invade Iraq, so the October fires were used as an excuse for the misleadingly titled "Healthy Forests Restoration Act," introduced in May 2003. All you conspiracy theorists out there take note that this was one month after Davis requested funding. The House Resources Committee marked up and approved the bill in late April with no prior public hearing. Ostensibly, the act improves the process of environmental-impact review and limits litigation on cutting, while maintaining funds for hazardous-fuel reduction projects near "at-risk" communities.

You know what? FUCK at-risk communities. They became at risk by moving into the forest in the first place. If you can't swim, keep away from sharks, right? Right, and if you can't fight forest fires don't live near forests. The only proven method of thwarting Satan's wooden minions from catching fire and thereby consuming houses was the controlled burn. But people who built (often multi-million dollar) houses in the middle of the forest bitched about how controlled burning smelled bad and produced soot, and sometimes even kept them out of their house for a day.

Maybe it wasn't simply yuppie arrogance and unwillingness to be inconvenienced. Maybe it was fear. The benefits of controlled burning are well documented-how certain species of pinecones will only open in fire, and how burning results in better quality soil and new growth, and provides conditions allowing wildlife to thrive. Maybe the nouveau-rural lived in fear that healthy trees would wait until the firefighters left and then attack, like in that Poltergeist movie. Whatever the reason, the result was that controlled burning for the most part ceased. Hence: "at-risk."

The Act doesn't actually help at-risk communities anyway, at least not on purpose. It provides no new funding, innovations, or protocol for fuel reduction. The strategy only lessens environmental safeguards to diminish fire risk. Actually, "lessens" is an understatement. Among other things, the Act allows the Forest Service to conduct large-scale logging projects without considering any alternatives or assessing environmental impact. It eliminates the right of citizens to appeal Forest Service logging projects, simultaneously imposing unprecedented limitations on judicial review.

In the wording of HFRA, no distance from communities is specified in defining what constitutes a fuel threat. Instead, the Act uses vague language with broad interpretation allowing expedited logging projects anywhere in the "proximity" of wildland-urban interface. Nor do agencies need to haggle over the semantics of "proximity" in order to justify logging in even the most remote areas, since the Act covers areas subject to the possibility of "windthrow" or "blowdown," and the existence or threat of disease or insect infestation.

While giving loggers a carte blanche, HFRA effectively silences dissent. The bill eradicates the previously-stipulated 30-day public comment period on environmental assessments, replacing it with a far less stringent requirement to "hold public meetings" and "provide [an undefined] opportunity for public comment." Litigation then becomes the only guaranteed way to challenge a logging project, but the act dictates that lawsuits must filed within 15 days of public notice of the project decision. So it seems, not too surprisingly, that what HFRA really does is override environmental protections while benefiting the timber industry.

Or does it? Many economists argue that the timber industry won't be helped by this act. They can cut as many trees as they want to but unless somebody buys them it's ultimately an exercise in futility. Even taking tariffs into consideration, Canadian wood is cheaper. And most American homes have very little actual wood in them anymore, except the two-by-fours still used for framing. Large sections of wood are manufactured by gluing together smaller pieces, or by using substitutive mixtures such as sawdust fused with binder.

These measures were taken to preserve mature trees, because most Americans apparently like trees. Californians especially like trees, have even been known to chain themselves to them, and those granola-eating hippies may try to do something wacky like save these big scary fire hazards. Citizens in other states might help them too, by writing their Congressmen to get some of the provisions of this act reversed, or boycotting wood made from the world's oldest living things.

But before you put pen to (ironically?) paper, just remember: Environmental concerns are the devil's concerns. The people have spoken, and their superior moral values mandate that Bush protect us from our freedom-hating enemies: trees. There could be terrorists hiding in them forests! Thanks again, America.



 

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The Top 10 Hacks of the 2004 Election

Matt Taibbi

10 - GEORGE WILL, NEWSWEEK: Will uses big words and pompous literary references to dress up what are basically the brutish and vulgar thinking patterns of a non-union meat-packing plant owner. He is a pig in a lace hat.


MEMRI Problems

Chris Riordan

Stranded from intellect and worthwhile rhetoric in Utica, NY for the last few months, I have made a habit of visiting political discussion boards online for a dose of informed bantering and arguing. I tend to gravitate towards conservative cyber communities because I generally prefer arguing to agreeing.


Pick of the Litter

Pat Ragpicker

It's 4am on a winter night, and I'm parked on a dead end street near Kaisertown. It’s a secluded corner of the city I found by driving around aimlessly. I'm new to town, and penniless after buying my van with $700 I squirreled away the last time I got a paycheck. That was 7 months ago. Over those months, I managed to live off a few hundred bucks while sleeping in a warehouse closet and helping some friends make a TV show to try selling to a network.


Redwoods Evil, Must be Destroyed

Kit Smith

Nature is a bad and inconvenient thing. It must be stopped. That's why so many of us environmental scientists voted for Bush. He recognizes that endangered species are tasty, that Yellowstone is the most awesome place for snowmobiling in the whole world, and that those horrible California Redwoods are home to Satan himself.


Too Cool for School

Al Uthman

In the decomposing cesspool of Buffalo's public schools, City Honors has long been regarded as something of a gem. In fact, it is widely regarded as the best school the city has to offer, with the brightest kids around.


Tortures-R-Us

Christopher Lord

Iraqis wondering what the next phase of the Republicans' invasion of their country will bring should consider El Aguacate airstrip in Honduras. In 2001, 185 bodies were dug up there: the victims were the 'terrorists' and 'enemies of democracy' of the day.


Buffalo in Briefs

Code Red - Everybody’s freaking out about Giambra’s proposed “red budget,” which would scale spending down to mandated minimums, and basically reduce Buffalo to some anarchic Escape From New York-style war zone within a year or two. People are understandably up in arms about the possible loss of branch libraries, the philharmonic and all arts funding (although we wouldn’t mind saying goodbye to that monumentally depressing animal Abu Ghraib we call a zoo), as well as a staggering reduction in nearly every other service, except high-level patronage jobs, of course.


Kino Korner

Michael Gildea

It’s amazing how pissed some parents will get if they see you drinking Remy Martin in a theater during a kids’ movie. Throw the three PCP-laced joints you smoked in the parking lot while disdainfully watching sports bar patrons with a hooker who promised you an express elevator to hell-of-a-night ahead into the equation, and you’ve got a recipe for ugliness, my friends.


[sic] - Letters

...The latter part of this summer and early fall espessially, I have noticed that your special brand of witty, in-your-face journalism has rubbed off on some other publications (ARE THEY SCARED? or ENVIOUS?) ARTvoice had a couple of weeks ago a cover wich depicted a puppetmaster type "pulling the strings"...Almost thought it was the new BEAST for a moment. ALTpress put out a cover story in their last issue about the finer points of rioting, WHAT!! are they just that desperate that they will use an old idea you guys used months ago? how boringly un-origional. And then finally this newest issue of ARTvoice with giambra depicted in an alice in wonderland spoof cover.....once again, thought it could be the new issue of the BEAST...




O Buffalo

Al Uthman

It's time to face some unpleasant facts, Buffalo. This country may not be the best place for us anymore. On November 2nd, we all bore witness to a terrible turning point in our history; a bad lifestyle choice, if you will. We had the chance to reject the increasing madness of our nation's leadership, their blind march to pointless war and craven desire to take advantage of us in every manner conceivable, and we blew it. America has spoken, and it said "duh."


Love or 4-Hour Erections

Matt Taibbi

...If history is any guide, the DLC will spend the next four years trying to find a pious bomb-thrower to put up as the nominee- unless, of course, the poll numbers in a few years' time show that Barack Obama is good-looking, black and charming enough to get the party over the hump using the same basic playbook that worked so swimmingly this time.


10 Ultra-cynical Ways to Beat the Republicans

Why did the Democrats lose? At least in part, it's because they thought that being right would actually work in their favor. Let's face it, logic doesn't mean squat in politics. People say there's too much cynicism in politics today, but we think there really isn't enough. Cynicism works. The Republican Party has embraced it, and it has worked wonders for them. The Democrats have made some progress in this area, but they are still lagging badly. If there's any hope for the blue states, they must learn the lessons of Machiavelli and Rove. To help them along, the BEAST offers these suggestions.


The Falsification & Death Administration

Kit Smith

The staff at the Food and Drug Administration may not actively hate you and want you to die, but a study of the agency's sordid history suggests that they don't really care if you live either. Lucky for us, drug companies are kind, conscientious, and self-regulating. For example, in late September Merck and Co, makers of Vioxx, agreed to voluntarily recall their famous drug, now that a new study suggests it may put people at increased risk for heart attack. Isn't that nice of them? How thoughtful…. Unless four years doesn't qualify as "new" to you.


The Smoldering Fuel Rods of Environmental Justice

Chris Meister

Mercurial weather put an electricity in the late October air in West Valley last weekend. Or perhaps that electricity came from the blazing fires of dissent? A nuclear waste processing plant, AKA the West Valley Demonstration Project, was the arena for a pre-Halloween protest-fest that drew a whopping…20 people.


The BEAST Interview With God

Feeling dejected and withdrawn over the stupidity of our fellow countrymen in reelecting George W. Bush, our thoughts turned first to suicide, then alcohol. Once we calmed down and sobered up a bit, we had no choice but to go to the source to ask the tough questions about the election, the future of our country and the world.


Top 10 Reasons to be TERRIFIED This Halloween

Al Uthman

1. The Supreme Court. Not only could this body again determine the outcome of this election by a widely scorned 5-4 vote based on indefensible logic, but if Bush stays in power he'll get the chance to ensure a religious right majority for decades-say goodbye to Roe v Wade. Chief Justice Rehnquist is about to go down, and if Kerry wins, that means a chance to tip the scales in favor of reason.


Onward Christian Assholes Matt Taibbi

Nothing brings out the inner Mazes and Monsters fanatic in the fundamentalist Christian like a war. Times of peace and prosperity are, for the deep believer, relative fallow periods, where all the drama of existence is confined to shouting matches at P.T.A. meetings and pseudonymous requests for sexual advice in whispered late-night phone calls to Dr. Laura.


A Word From Our Sponsors

New National and Local Campaign Ads Increase the Attack Level.



Give 'em Enough Pink Ribbon to Hang Themselves

Kit Smith

Breast Cancer Awareness Month was launched in 1985 by Zeneca Pharmaceuticals. Zeneca is the company that manufactures the widely prescribed breast cancer drug Nolvadex (generic name tamoxifen), and operates a chain of cancer care centers. No conflict of interest there! All TV, radio, and print media regarding Breast Cancer Awareness Month are paid for and must be approved by Zeneca. But wait; there's more.


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