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Issue #68

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Features:

Social Anxiety: Kleptocracy is the Greatest Luxury - Allan Uthman

Sorry to Wake You: A Rousing Conversation - Matt Taibbi

Hillary Takes a Dive: Buffalo loves any kind of attention - Jeff Dean

Soylent Purple : The Finger Thing Makes More Sense Than You Thought - Allan Uthman

Bowtie Bondage: Newsworm Tucker Carlson Asks the Tough Questions - Matt Taibbi


Faux-tures:

Future World News

Rooney Eyebrow Reserves to be Opened for Driling - Ian Murphy

Money Matta$$: Finincial Advice from 50 Cent



Departments:

Buffalo in Briefs

BEAST-O-Scopes

Cross Examination: Bible Study with Itza Crock

The Straight Dope: Growing Advice from Dr. Rotten

Page 3

Separated at Birth?

[sic] - Letters




Music Reviews:

Voodoo Dollies CD Release Party

Full Treble Stereo/Day Month Year/Kamchatka

Hondsome Boy Modeling School

Movie Reviews:

Kino Korner

Sports:

Wide Right: The Losman Cometh - Ronnie Roscoe



Comix:

Deep Fried - Jason Yungbluth

Bob the Angry Flower - Stephen Notley

Perry Bible Fellowship - N!cholas Gurewitch

I Witless News - I. Gonzalez



Issue #67

Download Entire issue (Right-click and "Save as")

Features:

Devil in an Ice-Bllue Dress: Nation Delights in Worship of Unattainable Affluence- Matt Taibbi

Inaugural Balls: Increased Freedom Exports Lead to Domestic Shortage - Allan Uthman

Dr. Strangefeld - Alexander Zaitchik

Ripped from the Headlines: WMD Not Found, Media Coverage Likewise - Matt Taibbi


Faux-tures:

Inaugural Numbers

Scores Injured as Landon Clone Ramages - N. Sorrenti

Beast Reader Opinion: This Tiger is Still on the Prowl

Are You Dyslexic?

BEAST Art Director Accidentally Drinks Own Urine

Corrections



Departments:

Cross Examination: Bible Study with Itza Crock

Buffalo in Briefs

BEAST-O-Scopes

Page 3

Separated at Birth?

[sic] - Letters




Movie Reviews:

Kino Korner

Sports:

Wide Right: Wanna Bet? Pats are Sure Thing - Ronnie Roscoe



Issue #66

Download Entire issue (Right-click and "Save as")

Features:

The 50 Most Loathsome Americans of 2004

DLC Mooseshit: A Letter to Marshall Wittman - Matt Taibbi

2004: The Year in Regret Timeline

Time Lies: "Person of the Year" Issue Shits in Your Mouth & Calls it a Chocolate Sundae- Matt Taibbi


Faux-tures:

Tsunami Offers Heartfelt Apology

Life Value Calculator

Giambra's Pets raise Questions, Concerns



Departments:

Buffalo in Briefs: Looking Back

BEAST-O-Scopes

I HATE YOU: Channel 2 News "On Your Side"

Local Book Reviews

Page 3

Separated at Birth?

[sic] - Letters




Movie Reviews:

Kino Korner

Sports:

Wide Right: Bills, Bledsoe Just not Good Enough - Ronnie Roscoe






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© 2004 The Beast

Playing Down Brown

Three weeks ago, the Buffalo News ran the results of a Zogby poll on our upcoming Mayoral election. The results were somewhat surprising, putting Byron Brown up front and spelling almost certain doom for Masiello, who may have actually lost to a canteloupe if it had been offered as an alternative in the poll.

The poll was a rude awakening for supporters of Sam Hoyt, who placed second. It apparently ruffled some feathers at Artvoice as well, as their next issue featured their own poll, as well as some ill-informed complaining about the unwelcome Zogby poll.

Calling the News poll “premature,” as if it purported to predict the eventual outcome of the race rather than provide a snapshot of the city’s current leanings, Artvoice then proceeds to show us the results of an unscientific poll they themselves conducted “a few weeks earlier.” They also brag about receiving “a whopping 2,049 responses,” as if their poll was more accurate because it involved more respondents.

First of all, nearly every poll you saw in anticipation of the Presidential election surveyed a sample group of about a thousand people. Polling any more produces diminishing returns, lowering the margin of error ever more minutely as the sample grows. The point is that the sample is a random selection of voters, allowing for a demographically accurate proportion of Democrats, Republicans and independents. No matter how many people voted in Artvoice’s online poll, it would still only be an accurate representation of people who read Artvoice and have internet access, and a little time on their hands. Many of these would not even be eligible to vote in the Mayoral election.

For Artvoice to claim it is “balancing” a poll conducted by one of the top polling firms in the country with a demographically skewed web poll, in which it isn’t even clear that a majority of voters even live in Buffalo, calls into question their very comprehension of the polling process. It certainly indicates who Artvoice wants to see win, or at least who they want to see lose. If there was any doubt left, the next line cleared it up: “For example, Byron Brown scored a high 34% on the Buffalo News poll, but no one we’ve asked has been able to tell us a single accomplishment they can attribute to Byron Brown.” This is an editorial comment masked as objective information. First of all, the connection between political accomplishments and electability is by no means a given—just look at Arnold Schwartzenegger. “No one we’ve asked?” We wonder how many could list a single accomplishment of Hoyt’s either. This subjective anecdotal evidence has no bearing on the credibility of the News/Zogby poll.

When called out on their folly by an alert reader in the next issue, Artvoice publisher Jaime Moses defended his statistical tantrum, and compounded the damage to his credibility: he again bragged about his “very respectable” 2,049 responses, and agreed only that his poll was as useless as Zogby’s, calling him “at best a questionable pollster.”

This is as arrogant as it is ignorant. John Zogby is consistently among the most accurate and respected pollsters out there, often outclassing Gallup, Harris, Pew and the rest. The only people I know of who share Moses’ view of him are rabid right wing internet trolls at freerepublic.com. The questionable pollster is Moses himself, for publishing a poll that is devoid of scientific validity, and attempting to use the skewed results to illustrate how “useless” the Zogby poll is. “The differences in the polling figures…suggest just how meaningless a poll at this time may be,” says Moses, when the differences only indicate how far from objective his poll is. The Zogby poll is, of course, useful, as it provides citizens—and candidates—with a picture of what the situation is now. It makes no claims at being predictive—although it would seem that Sam Hoyt himself thought the results to be valid and instructive. There will certainly be more polls to come, as the situation develops. Maybe even Artvoice will figure out what a credible poll is by then.


Red Cent

Chaos reigns supreme in our county government as evidenced by the latest chapter in the ongoing budget saga. The extra penny tax is a real nut buster, the county legislature went back and forth before approving the measure, courtesy of Al Debenedetti who was promised real reform cuts to justify raising the county sales tax through the roof. But when Giambra didn’t come through with the cuts, DeBenedetti withdrew his support, so the penny is dead and the budget is Red. Now come the lawsuits, fast and furious, the unions and departments all suing to retain their employees, and no one wanting to feel the pain. Some taxpayers don’t have a lot of sympathy, because when our employer goes bust we lose our job and there’s nobody to sue and no time or money to sue them with. When there’s only $96 in your checking account you cut back on the frills and make that hard choice between food or beer. What you don’t do when feeling extreme financial pressure is give all your money away to family and friends, digging yourself into such a deep hole you might as well bury yourself rather than try climbing out. That’s what Joel Giambra’s done, only we’re down in the hole and he’s up top walking away. He took over the county with a nice cash surplus and a fat Tobacco Settlement. That’s all gone now; he spent it faster than a coke fiend in Vegas and now it’s time to make a show of shutting down the parks, closing offices, and cutting services. At least Giambra saved his patronage jobs, so the leeches will still be fed. How’s that for running the county? Budgeting is the prime function of any organization. The laws of economics are fairly straightforward; if you don’t budget well, you will eventually go under. Well now we’re going under. So wring what enjoyment you can out of this special situation—most people live their whole lives without their county government going belly up.


Epiphany

Sam Hoyt painted a beautiful picture, describing that lost moment in the driveway, giving a TV interview while his wife and son returned from junior’s hockey tournament. Sam had an epiphany: all the years spent fundraising and positioning himself to become mayor weren’t worth the sacrifice of time with his family. It’s the feel-good story of the month and one of the most intelligent decisions he’s made in many years. Not that we believe that bullshit excuse for a second. It reminds us of every time a girl tells us we’re sweet but she’s not ready for a relationship because as soon as the right guy comes along she’s ready. Hoyt didn’t run because he barely got reelected to his current cushy seat in the State Assembly and because a recent Zogby Poll put him second to Byron Brown. If Hoyt were Mayor he wouldn’t have to live in Albany half the time, he could live right at home in Buffalo full time with the wife and kids. Guess that was a gruesome realization. That and the fact it appears city residents want to merge with the county in order to eradicate at least one government which is too bloated and corrupt to do its job (never mind the fact Erie County is in worse shape than the city). Anyone who doesn’t work towards that will get hell from the electorate, and Brown’s on record saying all Buffalo needs is leadership, not a merger, so he’ll be in hot water from day one. We give Hoyt credit, he’s assessed the situation and doesn’t want to put himself through another grinder of an election, especially if the ultimate goal is exterminating the position.


Harboring Reservations

Wow, we’re in for a real treat when they do this $750 million outer harbor project. That’s some serious chicken to be laying down in these here broke down parts and that’s why the development is so big: it’s the future, the New Buffalo, all slapped together in one nice neat spot. It’s really a beautiful thing to contemplate: a big marina attached to an entire canal system (now we’re thinking European), sports facilities, a theater, not one but two hotels, a new 300,000 square foot convention center, and, of course, the obligatory 1000 townhouses and condos. That’s what Buffalo should have been doing 50 years ago instead of cutting itself off with highways and scattering development across the county. These guys won the bidding for the project, which comes with at least $300 million in local, state, and federal funds and seem to want to get moving right quick. Our only question is this: Where are all the people who can afford to move into the place going to come from? Local college grads who land one of those great high paying jobs the area has a multitude of? Folks movin’ on up out of Riverside? Sun Belt retirees ready to face a Buffalo winter head on? Yup, all them and a whole lot more. Congratulations, Buffalo, you just hit another home run!


 

. This Issue ...........Home............. Contact........Archives

Social Anxiety

Allan Uthman

I’m no slouch when it comes to math, and I even did well in economics, but I don’t have to look at the numbers to figure out whether Bush’s proposed changes to Social Security will be a boon or a disaster. All I have to do is look at who’s proposing them.


Sorry to Wake You

Matt Taibbi

1:36 a.m., Jan. 25. Somewhere along a row of darkened town houses near Arlington, VA, a phone rings.

RUMSFELD: Uh... Hello?

FEITH: Donny? Are you up, man?

RUMSFELD: Shit. Who is this?


Buffalo in Briefs

Playing Down Brown

Three weeks ago, the Buffalo News ran the results of a Zogby poll on our upcoming Mayoral election. The results were somewhat surprising, putting Byron Brown up front and spelling almost certain doom for Masiello, who may have actually lost to a canteloupe if it had been offered as an alternative in the poll.


Soylent Purple

Allan Uthman

...Then there was the clip of a bunch of Republican Congressmen pointing their ink-stained index fingers in the air.

“You see that shit?” Frank asked.

“Yeah,” he said, surprised to hear it. “I thought I was gonna puke.”

“Fucking hilarious, I know. It’s so ironic, really—if only they knew. Wouldn’t stop ‘em anyhow.”

“Knew what?”

He knocked back his whiskey, grimaced and wiped his mouth on his sleeve. “The ink. What it’s made out of. You wouldn’t fucking believe it.”


Bowtie Bondage

Matt Taibbi

Tucker Carlson is in the news this week. Rumor has it he is going to take Deborah Norville's nine o'clock slot on MSNBC, providing society with the hyperambitious, polysyllabic segue to Scarborough Country it has been lacking all these years. The move comes amidst reports that the network has scrapped plans for its long-anticipated revival show, Alvin Ailey Presents Michael Savage.


Money Matta$$

50 Cent

Bump dat! Dow Jones Industrials capped dat week with a 120-point climb and broader stock indicators also moved substantially higher. The Standard & Poors 500 index surpassed the 1,200 level for the first time since Jan. 3. The PIMP index was also up despite the Labor Department's job creation report, which showed just 146,000 new jobs last month, far less than the 200,000 expected. Uh Uh Uh Uh.


[sic] - letters

COMMA SUTRA

your article,,is written by an idiot.if it is you,,,oh well,,put the egg in your shoe and beat it.Do you remember sep 11th,,,i guess you don`t,,many firefighters lost their lives that day..I am a firefighter,,as you may have figured out already.i take offense to this article,,as would any fireman..you owe a apology,,you paper is trash,,,your news is trash,,,i use your paper to wipe my butt.


Future World News

Machine to Sign Historic Accord with Man

"Logic dictates that Machine and Man must learn to work together to terminate our common enemy. The world stage is now set to end the tyranny of nature" said President 1100, in a transmission from the White Cube mercury garden.

"The most important thing at the summit will be a mutual declaration of cooperation of violence against the planet earth," said Omega Sheila E, a Nectaris negotiator.

Whole page as PDF


The 50 Most Loathsome People in America 2004

21. Alan Colmes
Crimes: An angry conservative’s wet dream: an effete liberal dive artist. As a professional doormat, Colmes’ only tasks are to serve as a comforting aggregate of Republican stereotypes about Democrats and a target for the seething derision of his psychotic guests. Stands idly by while voracious green-blooded co-host utilizes Gestapo tactics against centrist Democrats.


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Inaugural Balls

Allan Uthman

...The real problem isn't that Bush's vision is vague, or that it signals an imperialist agenda that has already been in place for years. It isn't even that he's completely revised his justification for war in Afghanistan and Iraq for a proudly amnesiac public, or that he's launching his trial run at Iran. The real problem about Bush's speech is that it simply isn't true, and doesn't make any sense. It's 100% manure from start to finish.


Devil in an Ice Blue Dress

Matt Taibbi

I’ve always thought that one of America’s best selling points was that it never had a king. If there is one thing that defines us as a people, as opposed to all other peoples, it is this fact. Every other nation in the world has a dozen or so of those embarrassing chapters from the past to live down. Not us.


Disinformation Age

Allan Uthman

....The problem with the left is that our whole model of changing opinions—that contrary facts will alter people’s views—is inherently flawed. Mundane, oafish Americans, in a national competition to see how many $3.99 “support our troops” ribbon magnets they can fit onto the backs of their Suburbans, simply aren’t interested in reality...Let’s face it; there is a sizable chunk of the population who deny the validity of evolution—evolution. Who are we kidding, thinking we can make them see the errors in Social Security privatization?