Joseph Duemer

Founding Member (since December 2006)
Help

I teach Literature & Humanities at a small college in northern New York state & have published four books of poetry as well as a couple of books on dogs. I follow American politics closely and have a special interest in Vietnam, where I have lived and worked for extended periods.

About Joseph Help
Location: South Colton, New York, United States
Occupation: Professor of Humanities
Interests: Dogs, bonsai
Expertise: American poetry, popular culture, education
Affiliations: Jack Russell Terrier Club of the US
Background Help
Journalism: 1-4 years
Education: Post-graduate school
News: 30-60 minutes a day
Internet: 90 minutes a day or more
Politics: Left
Age: 50-64
Gender: Male
Contact Info Help
Web Page: sharpsand.net
Address: South Colton, NY, US
Last Visit: Jun 9, 2008 - 10:51 AM PDT
Last Edit: Jul 28, 2007 - 6:45 AM PDT

This profile can be seen by everyone, including search engines. Help

Activity

Show all | Reviews | Posts | Starred | Comments
Joseph reviewed this story - Oct 1, 2008
Joseph's Rating
4.9

Excellent short piece on the failures of mainstream journalists to report about science effectively, truthfully, or even with a bar minimum of technical literacy.

See Full Review » (11 answers)
NT Rating: 4.4 | See All NT Reviews »
Joseph reviewed this story - Oct 1, 2008
Joseph's Rating
4.4

Very strong "report from the streets" journalism. Written with real style & conviction. The implications of what it means that a politically conservative and overtly apocalyptic religious movement is among the fastest growing on the planet are left for the reader to contemplate.

See Full Review » (12 answers)
NT Rating: 3.2 | See All NT Reviews »
Joseph reviewed this story - Oct 1, 2008
  • Betrayal

Joseph's Rating
4.4

Thoughtful blog entry that traces the psychology of the American right's sense of "betrayal by their leaders. The paradigm is the same as it was forty years ago when the right settled on the same explanation for the US de3feat in Vietnam. In this view, the "troops," indeed the entire military, has been sold out by the incompetence & moral failure of political leaders. As this American paradigm has developed, the only acceptable course of action for the right is to increase the level of violence until violence finally succeeds. Call it the Rambo paradigm. Maha blog does an excellent job in this post of laying out the contemporary dynamics of this phenomenon.

See Full Review » (12 answers)
NT Rating: 3.3 | See All NT Reviews »
Joseph reviewed this story - Oct 1, 2008
Joseph's Rating
2.4

The Captain's Quarters post reminds me of the old Mose Allison song: Everybody's crying Peace on Earth, Just as soon as we win this war. / Everybody's crying Mercy, But they don't know the meaning of the word." The author's assumption -- unstated but very real -- is that an expanded war will achieve the ends that have so far been unachievable. He reacts to Senator Coleman's declaration that the sectarian violence in Iraq is a political problem, by calling for a military solution. The post is useful because it posts Coleman's entire speech.

See Full Review » (13 answers)
NT Rating: 2.4 | See All NT Reviews »
Joseph reviewed this story - Oct 1, 2008
Joseph's Rating
4.1

Nina Totenberg is usually a reliable mouthpiece for for conservative talking points, though she usually dresses them in centrist "concern." Here, even the reliable mouthpiece is shocked into something like surprise, if not outrage.

See Full Review » (12 answers)
NT Rating: 4.1 | See All NT Reviews »
Joseph reviewed this story - Oct 1, 2008
Joseph's Rating
4.0

This AP story reports of Secretary of State Rice's presentation to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. The Committee members, quoted here at some length, clearly smell blood in the water and the senators' reactions suggest that there is virtually no effective support for the president's troop escalation in that body.

See Full Review » (11 answers)
NT Rating: 4.0 | See All NT Reviews »
Joseph reviewed this story - Oct 1, 2008
Joseph's Rating
4.1

The article explains how military tours will be affected by the president's decision to throw more troops into the Iraq war. The piece sticks to the numbers and does not venture into the sociology of the escalated war--its effect on soldiers' families and communities. The president has consistently behaved as if he had a 1942 army, not a 2001 army: this story is an explanation of how the latter reacts to being badly managed.

See Full Review » (13 answers)
NT Rating: 3.7 | See All NT Reviews »
Joseph reviewed this story - Oct 1, 2008
Joseph's Rating
3.3

Factcheck faults politicians for leaving out "key facts," but their definition of a fact is rather narrow. The key fact behind the president's speech is that he elected to attack a country that posed no direct or immediate threat to the US and he did so with such sloppy incompetence that the US Army and Marines are now being ground up by the Iraqi insurgency even as the president pushes his chips all in trying to pull something that he can describe as victory out of what everyone else sees as crushing defeat. That is the "key fact" left out of this piece, but which loomed large to anyone listening to George Bush's speech the other night.

See Full Review » (12 answers)
NT Rating: 3.7 | See All NT Reviews »
Joseph reviewed this story - Oct 1, 2008
Joseph's Rating
4.2

I distinctly remember predictions during the run-up to the invasion of Iraq in which opponents of the war predicted street-to-street urban warfare. Such predictions were dismissed as cowardly and even traitorous by most of the media, which just now seems to have seen a glimmer of reality. The story behind this military analysis by the Post is the MSM's war fever and Bush boosterism over the last three years. This is a good and important story, but the Post has a long way to go before it can be read as trustworthy on the Iraq war.

See Full Review » (13 answers)
NT Rating: 3.9 | See All NT Reviews »
Joseph reviewed this story - Oct 1, 2008
Joseph's Rating
3.6

A better than average story for USA Today in that it isn't an editorial pretending to be news. The structure of the story, though, follows the rhetoric of the last chance or the big push. This narrative structure probably has gotten embedded in American consciousness from watching war movies over the decades. Or World Poker Tour events on cable. When all seems lost, one last effort by one last hero will save the day. Or not. This piece actually uses that story-structure to show how high the stakes are for the administration. Bush has gone all in. Now we wait to see how the cards fall.

See Full Review » (13 answers)
NT Rating: 3.7 | See All NT Reviews »
Joseph reviewed this story - Oct 1, 2008
Joseph's Rating
4.8

General Petraeus, the new guy in Iraq, actually wrote the book on counter-insurgency. The book says you need twenty combat troop (not counting support troops) for every thousand in population. Apparently, at least according to yesterdays Gallup pill, the American people have already done the math and figured out that the "surge" is really, as Josh Marshall puts it, just a "punt" -- a way for George Bush to prolong the war and turn it over to the next president to deal with.

See Full Review » (12 answers)
NT Rating: 4.7 | See All NT Reviews »
Joseph reviewed this story - Oct 1, 2008
Joseph's Rating
5.0

The New York Times, along with much of the American media continues to indulge in magical thinking about Iraq. How many last chanced is the Times editorial board willing to give the president?

See Full Review » (13 answers)
NT Rating: 4.8 | See All NT Reviews »
Joseph reviewed this story - Oct 1, 2008
Joseph's Rating
4.3

A trenchant and well-argued polemic against a "surge" in American force levels in Iraq. Good, very specific, analysis of the Shia / Sunni politics fueling the sectarian violence.

See Full Review » (13 answers)
NT Rating: 3.4 | See All NT Reviews »
Joseph reviewed this story - Oct 1, 2008
Joseph's Rating
4.5

This is an important story, the main thrust of which is to report on a RAND study showing the deterioration of the security situation in Afghanistan.

See Full Review » (13 answers)
NT Rating: 4.3 | See All NT Reviews »
Joseph reviewed this story - Oct 1, 2008
Joseph's Rating
3.3

There is something dispiriting about this rehearsal of the conventional wisdom about the Democrats internal debates on Iraq. It relies mostly on politicians public statements rather than of research or interviews and while there is nothing wrong with that, it does not provide much context for understanding the debates it describes.

See Full Review » (13 answers)
NT Rating: 3.7 | See All NT Reviews »
Joseph reviewed this story - Oct 1, 2008
Joseph's Rating
3.8

This story effectively lays out the political challenges faced by the Bush administration as it tries to convince Americans that they should support a "surge" in troop levels in Iraq. Since Bush's new policy is dependent for its success on Iraqi Prime Minister al-Maliki having had a "sea change" in attitude, it would have been useful to have a paragraph or two about the political pressures on Maliki and on his track record.

See Full Review » (13 answers)
NT Rating: 3.7 | See All NT Reviews »
Joseph reviewed this story - Oct 1, 2008
Joseph's Rating
4.3

Thoughtful and historically informed thoughts on the proper duties of the Congress in relation to the Executive Branch.

See Full Review » (12 answers)
NT Rating: 3.5 | See All NT Reviews »
Joseph reviewed this story - Oct 1, 2008
Joseph's Rating
4.7

A very well-written insider's account of returning to Pakistan. The information about popular culture is particularly enlightening.

See Full Review » (11 answers)
NT Rating: 4.2 | See All NT Reviews »
Joseph reviewed this story - Oct 1, 2008
Joseph's Rating
3.6

This is partisan opinion journalism that takes aim at the other side's partisan opinion journalism. The analysis is sound, however, and based on published statements of Senate Democrats.

See Full Review » (13 answers)
NT Rating: 3.0 | See All NT Reviews »
Joseph reviewed this story - Oct 1, 2008
Joseph's Rating
4.1

This is an important story throwing light on one more facet of America's broken, market-based health care system.

See Full Review » (12 answers)
NT Rating: 4.2 | See All NT Reviews »
Joseph reviewed this story - Oct 1, 2008
Joseph's Rating
2.8

The story takes a single situation and attempts to draw broad cultural conclusions. Such arguing from a single data point is a specialty of journalist appealing to readers' prejudices. Is the situation described ridiculous? Yes. Is it a national trend? Not on the evidence presented. This is a thinly sourced piece of anti-Muslim propaganda. The piece is rife with provocative language. It also uses the hypothetical question to imply relationships that do not exist: What if this or that happened? Asking the question is used to suggest a relationship that does not exist. It is fascinating to see a conservative writer argue passionately, though, in favor of "secular space." Liberals have been saying the same thing for decades. What ... More »

See Full Review » (11 answers)
NT Rating: 1.9 | See All NT Reviews »
Joseph reviewed this story - Oct 1, 2008
Joseph's Rating
2.9

The story is subtly biased in favor of the anti-stem cell religious conservative position, glossing over the fact that embryonic stem cells remain a vital area of research, with great potential for saving human lives. The author accepts the conventional wisdom, that embryonic stem cell research is "controversial," which in this case is code for condemned by the religious right. Very slippery journalism.

See Full Review » (13 answers)
NT Rating: 3.8 | See All NT Reviews »
Joseph reviewed this story - Oct 1, 2008
Joseph's Rating
3.2

The main value of this blog post is the link to the video of Speaker Pelosi and the other links providing some context for her remarks on escelation of troop levels in Iraq.

See Full Review » (13 answers)
NT Rating: 2.6 | See All NT Reviews »
Joseph reviewed this story - Oct 1, 2008
Joseph's Rating
2.8

This would be a good story if it were not filled with snide attacks on Democrats. The facts are interesting and the thesis of the story is highly plausible, but in true National Review style, the author simply cannot help making nasty remarks about those whose politics he obviously detests.

See Full Review » (13 answers)
NT Rating: 3.0 | See All NT Reviews »
Joseph reviewed this story - Oct 1, 2008
  • It's over

Joseph's Rating
4.4

A trenchant blog post arguing that the war in Iraq is effectively over and that nothing the US does in terms of escalation or change in personnel is going to make a difference.

See Full Review » (10 answers)
NT Rating: 4.3 | See All NT Reviews »
Joseph reviewed this story - Oct 1, 2008
Joseph's Rating
2.2

There is reason to get such stories into the public record and that is what this article does; still, this is mostly a rehash of what is already know about a topic with very little significance. The fact that some people are endlessly fascinated with British royalty does not make them relevant to contemporary events.

See Full Review » (12 answers)
NT Rating: 2.4 | See All NT Reviews »
Joseph reviewed this story - Oct 1, 2008
Joseph's Rating
4.4

This story lays out Iraqi and American plans to sell Iraq's oil reserves to international companies based in the US and Britain. Since it has been a standard piece of political rhetoric for the Blaire and Bush administrations to deny any collusion with corporations that might benefit from the war in Iraq, the piece raises interesting and important questions.

See Full Review » (12 answers)
NT Rating: 3.8 | See All NT Reviews »
Joseph reviewed this story - Oct 1, 2008
Joseph's Rating
5.0

A strong and fair investigative piece by a local reporter. Journalism at its most effective and best.

See Full Review » (11 answers)
NT Rating: 3.9 | See All NT Reviews »
Joseph reviewed this story - Oct 1, 2008
Joseph's Rating
3.8

This is a good roundup of blog opinion around the blogosphere, with an emphasis on voices outside the US.

See Full Review » (12 answers)
NT Rating: 3.6 | See All NT Reviews »
Joseph reviewed this story - Oct 1, 2008
Joseph's Rating
3.3

Another NPR "both sides now" sort of story, except that -- as happens far too often -- one side is better represented & better sourced than the other. It is very difficult for American news organizations to present Palestinian viewpoints because Palestinian issues are so marginalized in American discourse generally. American political discourse -- including media discourse -- begins with the assumption that Israel's actions are aligned with American interests. It is therefore very difficult for the American media to even see Palestine. One should still applaud the attempt, however feeble, to present a balanced view of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

See Full Review » (13 answers)
NT Rating: 3.1 | See All NT Reviews »
Joseph reviewed this story - Oct 1, 2008
Joseph's Rating
3.8

The Washington Post has supported the Iraq War since the Bush administration began its campaign to sell the invasion to the American people. A cynic might say that the Washington Post has a great deal riding on Gen. Petraeus' success in bringing the war to a successful -- or at least not disastrous -- conclusion. The tone of this report has the strained optimism of a reporter trying his best to believe.

See Full Review » (13 answers)
NT Rating: 3.8 | See All NT Reviews »
Joseph reviewed this story - Oct 1, 2008
Joseph's Rating
3.7

Mildly interesting news report. I suppose it is important to get this sort of information out, but it's hard to see any wider significance.

See Full Review » (10 answers)
NT Rating: 3.7 | See All NT Reviews »
Joseph reviewed this story - Oct 1, 2008
Joseph's Rating
4.3

This is a well-written examination of views American readers are seldom exposed to. It quotes several hard-liners on both sides of the sectarian divide in Iraq.

See Full Review » (13 answers)
NT Rating: 3.9 | See All NT Reviews »
Joseph reviewed this story - Oct 1, 2008
Joseph's Rating
3.1

This is a brief report based on incomplete on information, making it difficult to evaluate the claims being made either for or against the Bishop.

See Full Review » (12 answers)
NT Rating: 3.6 | See All NT Reviews »
Joseph reviewed this story - Oct 1, 2008
Joseph's Rating
4.1

This story is part book review, part interview write-up. As a member of a school of Arts & Sciences at a university, I found it interesting if not profound. Nicely written. Could have been longer and gone into more detail.

See Full Review » (9 answers)
NT Rating: 3.5 | See All NT Reviews »
Joseph reviewed this story - Oct 1, 2008
Joseph's Rating
3.7

This is an interesting story about potentially important technology. The move from parsing single words to groups of words is the latest development in artificial intelligence. This story focuses on one group of computer scientists working on this problem in one way; there are other groups developing related technologies and this piece would have been better if it had mentioned some of those efforts, even if briefly, in order to provide a broader context.

See Full Review » (11 answers)
NT Rating: 3.7 | See All NT Reviews »
Joseph reviewed this story - Oct 1, 2008
Joseph's Rating
2.4

Wishful thinking from a conservative blogger.

See Full Review » (13 answers)
NT Rating: 2.7 | See All NT Reviews »
Joseph reviewed this story - Oct 1, 2008
Joseph's Rating
1.4

This is not journalism. It the worst sort of blog battery.

See Full Review » (10 answers)
NT Rating: 1.4 | See All NT Reviews »
Joseph reviewed this story - Oct 1, 2008
Joseph's Rating
4.7

This editorial lays out the fiscal options open to the new Democratic majority in Congress. It advocates a progressive tax code and social investment.

See Full Review » (13 answers)
NT Rating: 4.1 | See All NT Reviews »
Joseph reviewed this story - Oct 1, 2008
Joseph's Rating
4.4

NewsTrust is dedicated to the idea that good journalism is "fair" and even more than that, "balanced." This essay does not attempt to be fair and it uses passionate, pejorative language to describe the current American economic system. But it is good journalism. Was Tom Paine fair to the British? No. Was he a fine and honest writer? Yes, he was.

See Full Review » (11 answers)
NT Rating: 4.1 | See All NT Reviews »
(Beta)

Levels & Stats

Member LevelHelp
4.1 avg.
4.1 avg.
Activity
4.8 avg.
Experience
4.1 avg.
Ratings
4.1 avg.
Transparency
3.5 avg.
Validation
4.0 avg.

StatsHelp
Reviews
114
Answers
858
Comments
0
Ratings Received
16
Number of Raters
12
Ratings Given
29

Joseph's Widget

Add this widget to your site »