Monday, January 26, 2009

Citybank's New Jet and Other Notes

...Citicorp is buying a new $50 million private jet, it says here. Maybe they can fly it to the airport in London that they're bidding to buy, now that all those billions in taxpayer bailout money are burning a hole in their pockets.

... A good word here for Amtrak customer service: I recently booked a trip from New York to Orlando on the Silver Meteor train, in a sleeper compartment, but had to cancel a day before departure time. An Amtrak rep named Mary Lou cheerfully handled the cancellation in about 15 seconds, and my American Express card was credited with a full $588 refund the next day. Don't try that with an airline.

... The news media keep wingeing about rising costs of covering the news, but how come there are 4,000 registered media for next week's Super Bowl -- a story that is entirely, exhaustively, thoroughly covered by television? What exactly is the rationale?

...And since I'm grousing about the news media: I'm sad to see these reporters who just love paraphrases unwittingly but repeatedly distort the facts about that bozo Holocaust-denying, crypto-fascist bishop who's being reinstated into the fold by the Pope. I keep reading that Bishop Richard Williamson's sin was that he denied that six million Jews were murdered by the Nazis. Which suggests that the bishop might believe that merely, say, 4 million Jews were murdered by the Nazis. But Williamson actually said that NO Jews were murdered in Nazi gas chambers, and that the few hundred thousand whom he concedes did die in the camps were merely victims of neglect.

Here is what he actually said in a television interview in Germany two months ago:

"I believe there were no gas chambers... I think that 200,000 to 300,000 Jews perished in Nazi concentration camps but none of them by gas chambers. There was not one Jew killed by the gas chambers. It was all lies, lies, lies."

This goofball, I mean His Reinstated Eminence, also thinks 9/11 was a conspiracy cooked up by the United States government.

[Update, clarification: Williamson made his asinine claims during an interview recorded by Swedish television at a meeting in Germany of the ultra-conservative traditionalist Catholic movement, Society of Saint Pius X. His statements ignited a furor in Germany, where the interview was disseminated on the Internet. In Germany, where neo-Nazi movements are simply not tolerated, it is illegal to make public statements denying the Holocaust.]


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