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May 9, 2009
On The LiberalOasis Radio Show

People have been wondering where I've been. All over the place, actually, but my most recent absence has been caused in part because I was in Washington, D.C. chasing down a contribution to Bill Scher's great LiberalOasis Radio Show. He's gone to a new format where he combines his usual top-notch political commentary and interviews with segments from contributors. It's like This American Life on steroids (or participating in Major League baseball).

This week's show includes a podcast I hunted down from Congressman Roy Canunkabunk, the only Blue Dog Democrat in Massachussetts. He's acquired many accolades and been called many things while in Washington, the most recent of which is "a real piece of work." Check it out.

Also on this week's show: Sierra Club's Josh Dorner speaking about a real energy bill that's going to come out of the House, Tom Pappalardo with a very funny and nostalgic piece about 1980s computers, Dianne Bilyak with an interesting take on "Facebook" lists and WHMP's Glenn Johnson reporting from Northampton's Gay Pride day.

The show is broadcast on WHMP every Saturday at 10 a.m., and you can listen, download, or horde it at these links: (iTunes / XML feed / MP3).

Posted by Tom Burka at 10:31 AM in CommentaryLinksNoticesannouncements | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

October 7, 2008
Twittering the Debate Tonight

I've taken to twittering the debates, although I usually keep it a secret and tweet quietly in the corner. (If you don't know Twitter, check it out, there are some fun feeds there.) So come on in and subscribe to my Twittercast. It's like listening to me rant at the TV screen, except that I don't talk nearly as much. Or better yet, get yourself an account, follow me, and we can twitter at each other.

Other twittercasts I recommend are those of Bill Scher (LiberalOasis), Gina Louise Sciarra (Knitting Liberally), Pistolette (just discovered her -- she's funny), and John "PC" Hodgman.

Posted by Tom Burka at 2:54 PM in Notices | Comments (1)

April 8, 2008
Comments All Askew

Hey -- I've been so overwhelmed by spam in the comments that I shut them down, then turned on moderation, and now I'm just searching for a solution. So comments will be either moderated or unavailable, and my apologies to those who've tried to leave a note but been waylayed.

I'll probably put a captcha on or require registration, both options I've been avoiding, but those Russian spammers are now far too good at their job these days.

Posted by Tom Burka at 9:24 AM in Notices

March 7, 2006
Nominated Again!

Opinions You Should Have has been nominated for two Koufax awards (awards for lefty blogs -- Koufax, get it?): Most Humorous Blog, and Most Deserving of Wider Recognition.

The Koufax Awards are great -- for one thing, the nominated blogs (nice, long lists of blogs in every category) are wonderful to go through to find great new blogs that one hasn't known about, and to rediscover good blogs that one has lost touch with.

I, of course, ask readers to go vote for me, either by leaving a comment over there or sending in an email to the good folks at Wampum who spend countless hours running the thing. (If you're a big reader of blogs or a big blogger, consider tipping those guys -- it's expensive to run the awards.)

Note: While it says several places at Wampum that "voting is not yet open" -- those are old notices!

Posted by Tom Burka at 10:53 AM in Notices

January 20, 2006
Opinions You Should Have Named Publisher of One of the Top Ten Internet Satire Stories of 2005

finalist.gifHumorfeed, a collective of about 60 satire sites o n the web, has named its Top Ten Stories of 2005 (go check it out), among them, our very own "Existence of Poor People A Surprise, Says Bush". We're certainly honored. A panel of five judges (including MadKane and Satirewire's Andrew Marlatt) will now pick their favorite. Cross your fingers for us.

Posted by Tom Burka at 12:02 PM in Notices

December 16, 2005
Only You Can Help Fight the War on Christmas

The War on Christmas is running out of money.

That's why we urge you to contribute to your favorite liberal causes by making your online Christmas Holiday purchases through Progressive Depot. You use Progressive Depot as a gateway to the online shops (like that you already use, and Progressive Depot gives a percentage of their profits to liberal causes like People for the American Way and whatnot.

It's easy and it's Scrooge-like.

Posted by Tom Burka at 11:53 AM in Notices

March 31, 2005
hand_lg.gifHelp Stop Gannon-On-Wonkette Sex

If you can recover from that image (sorry, we just wanted to get your attention), Sean-Paul at The Agonist has alerted the Editors to the fact that the National Press Club has invited Jeff Gannon to speak on blogging. (They've invited Wonkette, too.)

While we would not be surprised to see Jeff Gannon hired as a neutral commentator on CNN (oops, now we've given them the idea), we join with The Agonist and many bloggers in thinking that the National Press Club panel would be incomplete without one of the fine and serious political bloggers who uncovered the Gannon story. We note that liberal response would be incomplete without some sort of petition.

So, if you're a political blogger, go sign it! You'll find yourself in good company.

Posted by Tom Burka at 6:22 AM in Notices

January 8, 2005
hand_lg.gifWashington Week In Revue

As the result of a bureaucratic slip-up, Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld was inadvertently included in the United States government delegation sent to comfort tsunami victims in Southeast Asia.

"Waves happen," Mr. Rumsfeld told survivors.

This and other stories here.

Posted by Tom Burka at 10:41 AM in NewsNotices

November 11, 2004
hand_lg.gif Opinions You Should Have Salutes The Soldiers
The editors have two close family members who, we thankfully note, served honorably in the United States Armed Forces and did us and their country proud. They both, without the help of any senators whatsoever, enlisted -- and they never missed a day. They are among those many who made, and are making, the real sacrifices that breathe life into the great dream of liberty that is America's truest and greatest foundation.

So: To the soldiers serving, and who have served, a note of thanks. The editors consider themselves lucky: of the Burkas who have served, both Ed and Uncle Al made it back home safe. May the families of American soldiers serving today be fortunate enough to hear the knocks of their returning sons, husbands, wives and daughters on their front doors. The sooner the better.

Posted by Tom Burka at 12:31 PM in Notices

September 15, 2004
hand_lg.gifThis Is What Weekends Were Made For

This is why people don't try to do stuff to their websites in the middle of the week. In an attempt to fix the comments (which now take several days to post -- and then in triplicate), and to solve several problems under the hood here, we broke everything. All the comments disappeared, apparently leaving for sunnier shores. So we got them back, but in the meantime I was in a state of non-posting frenzy. My able web guru Sekimori is on the case, however, and I expect a more smoothly functioning site sometime soon.

Read More »

Posted by Tom Burka at 5:33 PM in Notices

August 27, 2004
Virtual Blogging

I've spent the past weeks mainly catching up on deadlines at work and the like and not enough time in blogtopia (skippy, skippy, skippy ctp). I'm not promising full coverage of the RNC, but I can promise some special, excellent graphics by designer Bill Tyler that will appropriately welcome the Republicans to New York (thanks, Bill!), and as much blogging (and maybe some audioblogging) as I can fit in.

Let's see if we can make it through the week.

Posted by Tom Burka at 11:17 PM in Notices

August 24, 2004
The Nominations, Please

bestblog_120x150.gifThe Washington Post is holding some kind of political blog contest. The nominating period for blogs ends on September 3; voting starts later. I recommend that everyone who wants to nominate me (or anyone else) do so; I have no guarantee that one nomination will suffice to move me to the next round. Some of the guarantees: Best Democratic Party Coverage, Best Inside the Beltway, Most Original and Class Clown. (Is this for the Washington Post or a high school yearbook?)

If I can figure out to link the graphic to the Wapo, I will. In the meantime, to nominate your favorite blogs, click here. (Click on "Enter Contest.")

Update: You can click on the button, too.

Posted by Tom Burka at 11:03 PM in Notices

July 26, 2004
Press Eats Bloggers' Breakfasts

Especially Enjoy Waffles, Say Media

Moments after the beginning of a special breakfast for bloggers thrown by the Democratic National Convention Committee , members of the conventional media swarmed in and devoured the food on bloggers' plates.

"How long have you been blogging?" said a representative of AP, nibbling on a tasty croissant.

Bloggers melting under the unexpected and intense media scrutiny were glad for a respite from media attention.

"I'm absolutely glad the media so enjoys bacon," said Dave Johnson of Seeing The Forest. "I just wished they hadn't eaten my laptop."

Posted by Tom Burka at 2:35 PM in Notices

July 12, 2004
hand_lg.gifYou Could Win A New Car T-Shirt

Why wait until the Democratic Convention for convention news -- when we can make it up right now? And who better to invent the truth than you, loyal readers, you who think up comments that are often wittier than the fake news article preceding them?

So, here's the offer. Write up the funniest headline for the news I will be -- or should be -- reporting from the DNC Convention floor in two weeks, and I will write the article from the convention floor, featuring your very funny, laugh-out-loud headline, post it here, plus I will personally send you a t-shirt (or perhaps even cooler memorabilia) of the thrills, the spills, the chills and sheer eclat that occurs as the Democratic party "chooses" (or whatever it actually does to) its nominee. (Maybe a Dean delegate convention hat, even.)

So what are you waiting for? Write, people, write!

Posted by Tom Burka at 12:10 PM in Notices

July 8, 2004
hand_lg.gifIt's Official. We're Reporters.

Opinions You Should Have Credentialed For Democratic Convention, Thousands Weep

Yep. We can take a statement from you and everything, and then we can quote you as saying anything we like.

We've been officially designated an "on-line (sic) daily computer service or newswire" for the upcoming Democratic Convention and have been granted press credentials to cover the event.

We (that is to say "I") applied as a correspondent for OpYSHA, as well as The American Street and Jesus' General. Needless to say, the DNCC could not turn us down.

The General has realized that I (we), in his words, is (are) "a Frenchman," and so my "reportage" will not be on display on his site. Instead, look for blogging from the convention floor here and at American Street. I have promised to send the General pics of "his kinsmen" picketing and protesting outside the Fleet Center, so look for those at his place.

Yesterday was spent in a frenzy of journalistic preparation, as I zoomed all over town looking for a combat photographer's vest.

I am indebted to Kevin Hayden at The American Street and the General himself at Jesus' General for their kind permisssion to use their names, and hopefully their credit cards, to help gain credentials to the event.

Vive la France!

UPDATE: Doug Everett of Radio Parallax at KDVS-FM and I will also do a roundup of the convention on Thursday, just hours before Kerry accepts the nomination. If you haven't tuned in there (the shows are archived and available at the KDVS site, and there's a live wbecast), you should. Doug is as fine an interviewer as you're likely to find anywhere on broadcast radio. He warmly and smartly tackles politics and current events with interviews of some of the biggest names in the news and media. Plus, he does top-notch political satire.

Posted by Tom Burka at 8:39 AM in 2004 Year In ReviewNotices

June 17, 2004
hand_lg.gifSometimes Hearing Voices Is A Good Thing

It's hard to imagine Bill Moyers and Tom Burka with adult film star Christy Canyon between them (it's an unwanted image, isn't it?), but that's what you'll get if you tune into KDVS today at 8:00 p.m. EST, 5:00 p.m. on the West Coast. Doug Everett of Radio Parallax brought the three of us together for an evening of "unprotected radio." Doug's radio show often features excellent political satire cooked up by Doug himself, so we at OYSH are happy to be a part of it. (The Christy Canyon thing was just icing. Really.)

If you're in the Sacramento area, tune into to 90.3 FM, or, if you're anywhere else, there's a live web feed at the KDVS home page, at the top of the left-hand column. OYSH will be at the end of the show, so look for us following the tail end of Christy Canyon. So to speak.

Posted by Tom Burka at 11:08 AM in Notices

May 29, 2004
hand_lg.gifOpinions You Should Have Needs Your Help

We've got serious problems here. Moveable Type, the "personal publishing" software that keeps the site going, is going. Half the time it doesn't work -- new posts don't go up, or only go up after rebuilding (and timing out) three to four times in a row. Comments, as you all know who comment here, take about 30 seconds to post, which frequently (understandably) results in double posting. If you notice there's been some slowdown in posting (and I hope you didn't), it's because the Bush Administration isn't funny anymore. Plus, it's Clinton's fault. And maybe, just a little, it's because of these "technical problems" (read: women's troubles).

It turns out that this slowdown will happen with MT -- when it hits a certain number of posts and comments (in my case, 500 + posts and 1000+ comments), it becomes unbearably slow (and somewhat unusable). To speed it up, I have to remove part of the software (the part that removes the glut of comment spam) or just move to Expression Engine or something.

Anyone have any ideas? I know I have some readers out there that use this software and have a lot of traffic and posts, and I wonder whether they've run into this problem and come up with a fix for it.

Posted by Tom Burka at 10:45 AM in Notices

April 5, 2004
hand_lg.gifManaging Editor Makes Desperate Move To Protect Clinton Legacy

Posting may be lighter this week, as the managing editor will be out of town in order to make sure that the Clinton papers do not fall into the hands of the dreaded 9/11 Commission.

Wish him luck. (Or fill in some comedy while he's on this dangerous mission....)

Posted by Tom Burka at 10:17 AM in Notices

March 2, 2004
hand_lg.gifOpinions You Should Have Newsroom Struck by Lightning; Power Surge Shorts Out Managing Editor

The newsroom was struck by lightning as recently as last Friday, shorting out the managing editor, and plunging the staff of O*Y*S*H into chaos. Scores of great stories were incinerated on the way to press.

The managing editor is being taped together with duct tape (which can fix anything, really). Barring another national disaster, we expect business to resume as usual by this evening.

Posted by Tom Burka at 3:13 PM in Notices

February 12, 2004

On February 6, 2003, I wrote my first post, and on February 12, I wrote the first "headlines." One year later, I've had 53,000 odd visitors and 65,000 hits, over 400 entries and 800 comments, and Opinions You Should Have is "syndicated" weekly to two other sites. Technorati says I now have 143 inbound blogs and 156 inbound links, which is a long way from all-around zero last February. Plus, I got an iPod.

I have to thank the many, many people who sent me kind words, or posted them here, who linked to me or just read the satire and laughed. (For those of you who don't like me or the site, these are the people to blame.)

Read More »

Posted by Tom Burka at 10:39 PM in Notices

January 27, 2004
hand_lg.gifKoufax Awards Commitee Nominate "Seabiscuit," Depp, Others

Opinions You Should Have has been nominated for Most Humorous Blog over at Wampum. This is part of the Koufax Awards, for lefty blogging excellence. The nominees are:

Happy Furry Puppy Story Time with Norbizness

Jesus' General

Opinions You Should Have


Neal Pollack

The Poor Man

skippy, the bush kangaroo


and World 'o Crap.

These are very fine blogs indeed, and the management is honored to be mentioned with them.

The blogs in every other category are excellent as well, and I urge you to go check them out. Go vote!

Posted by Tom Burka at 12:24 PM in Notices

January 26, 2004
Work, Computer Failure, Horrific Winter Conspire To Keep Faux Journalist From Website

A confluence of events that could only be the work of a secret conservative cabal headed by Roger Ailes and Rupert Murdoch (the Axis of Weevils) has prevented the large, multidinous staff of Opinions You Should Have from fulfilling its mission of posting a new article in the past day or more.

The management apologizes for any inconvenience this has caused its fine, brilliant, winsome readers and promises an article this very evening.

Posted by Tom Burka at 4:33 PM in Notices

January 16, 2004
GOP To Reshuffle Swing States; Plan To Redistrict America

Texas, South Carolina Will Decide Election This Year, GOP Congress Declares

You'll find the full story at The American Street.

Yes! I'll be contributing there every Friday! (Or, as Skippy might say, "y! ibctef!")

If you haven't checked it out, there's an amazing bunch of people over there: skippy, Jeralyn Merritt of TalkLeft, Angry Bear and Kash, Dave Johnson of Seeing The Forest, Kevin Hayden, Chuck Currie, Dave Neiwart of Orcinus, Luis Toro of Colorado Luis, Mary Ratcliff, Mark A.R. Kleiman, Digby of Hullabaloo, Jeff Alworth -- and, if you can believe it, some as-yet-to-be-named bloggers.

Posted by Tom Burka at 1:15 PM in Notices

October 21, 2003
DOS Attacks, Not Dos Attacks, Says Host

Wanna know why my site has been going up and down like a yo-yo? Go below the fold to find out.

Read More »

Posted by Tom Burka at 11:26 AM in Notices

June 30, 2003
hand_lg.gif Opinions You Should Have Unveils Startling New Look

Nausea, Unpleasant Sensations Greet Readers

The site has a new look. Those of you who care, please repoint your bookmarks to; the IP address listed at the old site may get flakey. (If you don't know what I'm talking about, you're probably better off.)

If anyone has linked to my archives and the links have stopped working, or generate error messages, let me know and I'll try to correct the problem. I'd also appreciate a heads up if a page looks strange in your browser. If it's just the content that's weirding you out, then everything's probably normal.

Posted by Tom Burka at 11:56 AM in Notices

June 24, 2003
Opinions You Should Have Has A New Look!

Opinions You Should Have has a new look and will have a newer look soon. If you're here, you've found me; this is the place!

Web address: still works, but if you want to go the old site (to sob, to reminisce, what have you) it's at

If you've got a blogroll that points to, you may wanna set that to unless you want to read the same entries over, and over, and over . . .

Posted by Tom Burka at 3:07 PM in Notices

April 17, 2003
The Truth Behind The Daily Rant

I thank Jane Finch and Jay Caruso (they're just one guy, actually) for letting me tell the real story behind the blog.

Posted by Tom Burka at 11:20 AM in Notices

Thanks to Antidotal

The fine folks at Antidotal (I think it's one guy, actually) were kind enough to reprint my coverage of the search for WMD in Iraq. I forgot, by the way, to mention Col. Richard McPhee, Commander of the 75th Exploitation Task Force, who must have spoken recently with General Walsh when he said, "It's only a matter of time."

Posted by Tom Burka at 7:05 AM in Notices

April 4, 2003
I Promise I'll be Funny Tomorrow
Posted by Tom Burka at 8:53 AM in Notices

March 29, 2003
An Apology : It's not always humor you'll find here . . .

When I have the time to work up a humorous take on events, I do. When I don't, I just say what I wanted to say straight-on, without the satire. If you want more humor here (and I certainly do), try to think of the funny pieces as humor, and the straight-on pieces as "grim humor."

Posted by Tom Burka at 8:55 PM in Notices

February 17, 2003
New Photo

Like I said, this is a work in progress. (Actually, I never said that. Pretend I did.) That's why this pic is up in the left hand corner. It's also why it will only be there for a very little while. I'm sure you're all duly relieved.

Posted by Tom Burka at 12:28 AM in Notices