What's sad is that everyone doesn't already know this. I was a history major and learned of plenty of horrors perpetrated by plenty of governments up until around the time of my birth. But until recently I didn't begin to appreciate the depth and breadth of what governments have been and are still doing to the majority of poor miserable bastards on this earth. And among them America is chief. Pray that China and India never develop militaries as powerful as ours, lest they use them as we do to devastating, unconscionable effect.
Really, nobody needs to make things any worse.
Nota Bene: On a completely unrelated note, listen to the cadence of Zinn's speech. It's almost the same as Christopher Walken's. (Their accents are similar but not nearly as similar as their cadences. Zinn is from Brooklyn; Walken is from Queens.)
Masochists, read the post here.
Finally, I would like to thank Joe Lieberman for helping me staff my exploratory committee. I will accept their decision, no matter how painful, when they finish their month of spelunking in the caverns southern Mexico.
A man is accused of having sex with the carcass of a deer that he found lying beside the road – but his lawyer denies that he committed bestiality, on the grounds that a dead deer isn't an animal any more.In an act of titanic understatement, the paper's headline reads, "Deer assault case presents unusual issues."
20-year-old Bryan James Hathaway of Superior, Wisconsin allegedly had sex with the deer corpse after he found it on the roadside on October 11 this year. Authorities say he told police that he noticed the deer lying in a ditch, and then moved the corpse into the woods.
He is charged with 'sexual gratification with an animal' – but in a magnificent piece of legal footwork, his attorney argues that he can't be guilty of that crime, because a carcass isn't an animal, the Duluth News Tribune reports.
Public defender Fredric Anderson filed a motion last week which claimed: 'The statute does not prohibit one from having sex with a carcass.'As if we haven't gotten lost in that territory already.
He said that if you try to include corpses in the category of 'animals', then 'you really go down a slippery slope with absurd results.'
The only clear place to draw a line in the definition of what is an animal, and what isn't, was at the point of death, he argued.And isn't this what makes law more fun than science? In law, anything is possible for those who believe.
He gave the example of a roast turkey – with which it would be illegal to have sex under the braoder interpretation of the law – claiming that it was unreasonable to suggest it should still be classified as an animal for the purposes of law.
In response, prosecutor James Broughner argued that a deer carcass is still an animal – pointing out that in his statement to police, Hathaway called the corpse a 'dead deer,' demonstrating that he still thought of it as an animal.Ah, but he didn't say "animal," he said "deer." Who knows what "deer" could mean "for purposes of law." Personally, I when I hear "deer," I think "cuisinart."
Judge Michael Lucci noted when hearing the arguments that: 'I'm a little surprised this issue hasn't been tackled before in another case.'Say whaaa? I'm pretty jaded; I've heard of or seen some really bizarre and unwelcome practices--even outside of John Ashcroft's boudoir. But even in my farthest reaching comic moment, the possibility of people fucking dead animals has never occured to me. Just what sort of legal world does this judge inhabit? Does it overlap with an emergency room? What Rick-Santorum-level of bizarre shit do lonely Minnesotans partake in? Can it be filmed and sold overseas?
If Hathaway is convicted, he could serve up to two years in prison, because of a previous conviction in 2005 for shooting dead a horse called Bambrick. So that he could have sex with it.Count that as one more thing I hadn't considered. How, exactly, does one come to such a fetish? How do you find out you've got it? Are trudging through the woods one day, on the cusp of puberty, and see a dead dog and get sprung?
On a side note, newly minted House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (can't we have Boxer?) declared that this Congress would be "the most honest, most open, most ethical Congress in history." I guess that means none of them will be showing up for work in January....
On another side note, from here on out, things are gonna get fugly. Fortunately, in a Hegelian dialectical reversal, to Democrats fugly = beeyooteefull.
Other recent discoveries of the obvious told realitique™, on condition of anonymity, that the obvious place to look to wed General Relativity (or, alternatively Lorentzian Relativity) to Quantum Mechanics is spacetime (neé the Ether) itself (a.k.a. "dark energy," which is quite likely the same thing as the "zero-point energy," which follows logically from the discovery of the Casimer--sp?--effect).*
In other news of the Obvious, Slate's John Dickerson is showing signs of concluding, based on six years of documentary evidence, that President Bush™ almost never tells the truth about anything. Welcome to the club, John; wish you had the mental wattage to figure that out, as the rest of us did, as early as 2001, but then you're a prominent Washington journalist, so obsequiousness, ignorance, incuriosity, spinelessness and a hazy cloud of advanced stupidity were required for you to land your current position as Slate's White House Disinformation Specialist. Tell Tony hi for us, willya?
*Thanks to several talented surgeons over several hours, I am now free of the inexplicably expanding stick up my ass.
In celebration of Halloween (or Samhain), here are too unwelcome articles, one on the provision Bush™ recently snuck through Congress that gives the Boy King the authority to seize control of the National Guard anywhere, anytime, without informing or asking permission of any state's governor. And if that news wasn't good enough for you, the dollar is looking pretty precarious right now. What should you care? two words: Howard Beale. The US dollar is the default currency of the world, against which all other currencies are measured. Heretofore it's been stable and so half of Asia has been buying up dollars and loaning them to us to pay for massive tax cuts for the rich, earmark giveaways, war profiteering and bloody, out-of-control wars in the Middle East.
So here we have a president illegally overriding Congress and state governors and a currency that's rolling down hill pretty fast until it reaches bottom and collapses.
What I've worried about vis a vis this election is the nexus of several disturbing, dictatorial trends, namely:
- The rapid construction of prison camps throughout the country which could eventually hold up to 400, 000 people. This is being done under the cover of "immigration reform."
- At the very least the last two elections were stolen outright, and there's all the documentary evidence you could ever want to back it up. And the GOP is busy stealing this one too.
- Cheney's order not long ago that the Pentagon draw up detailed plans for responding to another 9/11, despite the fact that the Administration is allegedly "keeping us safe" and we have no idea how to respond to an attack that has not occurred by people from a country we don't know.
- The building of superhighways for transporting things from Canada to Mexico and back. This is the flipside of a North American "security zone" that's in the works. Essentially, we'd cede our national sovereignty in exchange for a continent-wide shared security apparatus.
- The death of Habeas Corpus.
- Illegal wiretapping of the entire population.
- Using signing statements unconventionally to undermine legislation
- Ceding federal authority to industry insiders who join government and write legislation on behalf of said industry.
- Gearing up for war with Iran. Right now, most of our military hardware, most of it Naval, is in the Persian Gulf doing exercises with Israel and NATO (I think). Russia, China and most Caspian countries performed exercises as well, as did Iran. Add to that our cooptation of the exiled Iranian terrorist group the MEK to carry out acts of terror in Iran itself. There's good reason to believe that at least two planes full of top brass were crashed by the MEK. The war on Lebanon was a test case and was a smashing success. At least it was according to the Israelis. That's because the war had little to do with Hizbollah and everything to do with undermining Russia, China and Iran so Israel and Turkey could build their Ceyhan to Ashkalon oil, gas and water pipelines along the coast.
Sadly, though, we shouldn't be surprised. The same thing happened after 9/11. Before the attacks, the Taliban insisted that they wouldn't allow Bin Laden to attack the US. After the attacks, they agreed to hand over Bin Laden to the Hague, for trial. What did we do? Not only did we not tell the American public but we told either the Taliban or reporters (from the UK?) that peace was against our interests. We'd already threatened the Taliban with "a carpet of bombs" rather than "a carpet of gold" before the "snows fall in October." Which is when the bombing began. Considering that we have documentary proof that the war plans were ready before 9/11 and that taking Afghanistan was central to the War on (Some) Terror and that the entire fake war was an ingenious, if crazy plot cooked up by Zbigniew Brzinzski and Wolfowitz and later revised by the Project for the New American Century, it's pretty clear from that evidence alone that 9/11 was our plan to create a pretext for an underhanded war whose purpose was base economic gain and world domination. And that's even before you venture into the shadowy realm of Tora Bora, where we purposefully left open an escape route and later flew ~8000 Taliban and Al Qaeda fighters to Pakistan over several days, requiring the full knowledge and approval of Reich Marshall Rumsfeld, not to mention the Pakistan ISI, our offspring and favorite cutout in the Middle East.
The detailed legal releases, which it seems no one ever reads, were presented to people as if they were permission forms for being interviewed by a Kazakh TV show.
Once this project gets rolling, I'm going to find some guest bloggers to take over for a while. I'll probably have a blog for the production, but I doubt I'll have time to write it. Interns: they're not just for blowjobs anymore.
If you're not used to reading movie scripts, the format is pretty much like a play, though I'm not suggesting that what's below is perfect. I haven't read or written a film script in years, so I'm not sure if you use quotation marks or whatever, but it's close enough for now.
Silouette. Long shot. Camera slowly pushes in.
NARRATOR: "Tim Osman is a bad man. Tim Osman is a liberal. Tim Osman thinks you should wear a veil...or a burka...or some kind of sheet or something. Tim Osman wants to kill you. But worst of all: Tim Osman wants to kill your children."
Fade in on medium shot of Osman, in a bare semi-shadowed medium blue-gray studio, on a stool. He looks around quizzically.
OSMAN: "Sorry. I--I didn't catch that part. Did you say something?"
Fade to black. Slow zoom on typical film fest laurel quotations. Big, dramatic kettle drum resonates (as in 2001).
NARRATOR: "From the makers of...mmm...a couple of short films you probably haven't seen and Anal Pounders Four and Midget Donkey Blowjobs Five--What!?" Bleeped language. "--divorced for finding that! I can't afford another--"
STUDIO ENGINEER: Bleeped cuss word. "Fuck this shit!"
NARRATOR: "Works for me."
Sound of door crashing open. Lots of bleeped shouted epithets. Scuffling. Cries of pain.
INTERLOPER: "--finish the fucking trailer or I'll--"
STUDIO ENGINEER: [frightened] "Yes, sir. Yes, sir. Absolutely. I understand. I understand...."
NARRATOR: "Dmitri, are you okay? Dmitri!?"
STUDIO ENGINEER (Dmitri): [whimpering but trying to sound tough] "I'm okay. Yeah, I'm okay. I'm fun. He just surprised me is all."
Resume zoom on quote. Background noise of studio, steps, door closing.
NARRATOR: "This fall...or possibly next fall, depending on whether our captors can get a decent distributor...so, like if you know anybody, please, call them at 504-522-1408,"
Substitute still of phone number (same font) on screen in large characters.
NARRATOR: "Again, that's 504-522-1408.
During voiceover, number flashes and then each digit flashes once, in sequence.
NARRATOR: "And if they're not in, please, please, I fucking beg you [beat] leave a message and repeat your number twice so they're sure to get it. Thank you. [beat] Thank you. I mean really. [hushed tone] These evil fuckers have me locked up and they're [beat] threatening to [bleep] my chil--!"
Sound of door crashing open. Muffled shouts and epithets. Sound of NARRATOR crying for help. Pain. Blows. Whimpering.
NARRATOR: "...get ready for Tim Osman [beat] to kill your children."
Osman on stool. Medium shot.
OSMAN: "What!? I--I don't want to--"
NARRATOR: "Shut up, liberal."
FADE TO BLACK on Osman.
OSMAN: "Hello? [beat] Hello?" Taps on microphone. "Is this thing on?" Steps echo. Sound of jiggled doorknob. "Hey. Hey! I--Can you open this [bleep] thing!?" Pause. Sigh. [Bleeped "shit" We hear the "t"].
Basso profundo echo of kettle drum. Zoom in on far-off title, maybe with whooshing sound for each word as it approaches, with ever-increasing insistence and pitch of temolo violins until they reach near-dog-whistle pitch.
TITLES: "Tim. Osman. Wants. To. Kill. Your. Children."
Background sound: children laughing at playground, etc.
UNNAMED CHILD: [faintly] "I'll never tell...."
We hear an unseen child scream.
UNSEEN CHILD: Please, don't hurt me!
We hear a wicked cackle from whomever is threatening the children.
FADE TO BLACK. Zoom in on title, as before.
TITLE: FALL 2008. OR POSSIBLY NOT. IT DEPENDS. [Smaller letters, each line decreasing in size in an absurd fashion] So much depends on a distributor / Glazed with, er, rain or something / beside, or maybe on, or next to, if I may / no, not white chickens / that won't work / hmmm... / anybody? a little help...? / [very small letters] 504-522-1408 / that's 504-522-1408 / Visa, mastercard, COD or money orders accepted. Shipping and handling included. / Thank you for your business!
FADE TO BLACK.
Credits aside, my grandmother, Louise--help me out here, Ned and Matt--has had Parkinsons' for at least two decades. My grandmother for two decades has frightened me over her use of a knife. Rush Limbaugh once again proves he's so much more than just a drug-addicted pedophile.
I understand that it's "hard" to "pull out" and "end" the war. But as Bill Maher said last week, we wanted to "penetrate Iraq and bring it to a glorious, euphoric climax," but three years later, we "keep pounding away until the whole area has become inflamed. Under the circumstances, the kindest thing you can do is just...pull out."*
*If you find the quote and I got some of the words wrong, let me know. And if you want to know how to make fine print like this, just ask. I use the font-size property of the span tag.
–Daniel EllsbergFor those who know a good bit about the blockbuster dirty secrets of Bush, Reagan and Iran-Contra, connections between drug-smuggling, arms dealing/smuggling and various Western intelligence services will come as no surprise. But then there's Sibel Edmonds, who can (apparently) link widespread congressional bribery by foreign interests like Turkey to: Dennis Hastert, the Perlowitz Neocon Allstars, Afghan heroin, the European heroin market, Al Qaeda, Brewster Jennings (Valerie Plame's cover), Israel, AQ Kahn's bomb and other arms trading. This is The Big One that the FBI had gone quite a ways investigating (including documents and wiretaps) and was handing over to DoJ when Johnny "Spank Me, I Love Authori-tie" Ashcroft quashed it. These interviews with Larisa Alexandrovna and Daniel Ellsberg make it pretty clear that this story is one of the biggest out there in an era where you can throw a rock and hit a ginormous story--so, you know, don't expect to read it in the New York Times.
NOTE: If you haven't heard of "The Octopus," google it and read the Spy magazine article from several years ago. Whenever I hear about international organized crime (which Sibel Edmonds explicitly mentions) connected with the Military Industrial Complex and Western intelligence services, I think of it. The most disturbing thing is perhaps the extent to which such criminal enterprise drives foreign policy and influences government. For a taste, read Robert Parry's many articles on Bush, drug smuggling, the October Surprise and other tasty treats. (Scroll down and follow the links on the left-hand sidebar.)
But if you want an excellent overview of what we're up to in the Middle East and Central Asia, including all the military exercises Iran, Russia, China and their neighbors have conducted recently, and the massive naval military buildup by us, NATO and other allies, read this. For a detailed list of all the hardware we're positioning in and around the Persian Gulf, follow the Chossudovsky link near the beginning of the article. Considering that the Enterprise Strike Group (I may have the name wrong) is 1)
UPDATE (Not Exactly): From CBS and ABC morning news to NPR, I have heard nothing but whitewash from every Mainstream News Media outlet today. If you've heard something substantive, please, let me know. E&P sums up what most of the "news" sounded like. As pathetic as NPR's coverage was, at least they let Don Gonyea put criticism of the new tyrranical legislution in stark terms.
UPDATE: More Olbermann on today's tragedy.
UPDATE (Sort of): Meant to post this earlier Olbermann Habeas Corpus dirge, which is quite funny, but couldn't find it at the time.
Defending the president's policy on torture, he says, "I think there is a very sound argument for saying that those who violate the Geneva Conventions should not benefit from its provisions." When Solomon reminds him that that the U.S. stands for rights for all, he answers, "Well, we have guaranteed many rights to the prisoners."(Emphasis mine.)
Speaking of which: Ashcroft reveals that his artistic leanings go beyond music. He also makes "barbed-wire sculpture," he says (you can't make this stuff up).
Elsewhere, Ashcroft, a leading evangelical, admits he is a sinner, explaining, "I'm unkind on occasion, and I am selfish." He's an active Christian "because I am not good, because I need help."
Nuff said. (Via Raw Story.)
As so many have already done (including myself), it's time to recognize that America is dead.
...perhaps Bush was just trying to be heard this week. Mark Foley's heavy breathing by BlackBerry consumed a lot of news cycles. Maybe Bush should have talked about Iraq by IM to get heard.(Emphasis mine.)
A well-placed source has told WMR that the Pagegate scandal will soon involve underage male and female teens who have not served as congressional pages, but who have reported abuse by well-known GOP players in the nation's capital. The source says the Psychiatric Institute of Washington's "Center Unit" has dealt with a number of child abuse cases involving senior Republican office holders in the Washington, DC area. Now that GOP abuse of minors is finally receiving media attention as a result of Pagegate, it is a matter of time before the abused males and females report the details of their own abuse cases.Even if that proves false, Brian Ross reports that three more teens are accusing Foley:
Three more former congressional pages have come forward to reveal what they call "sexual approaches" over the Internet from former Congressman Mark Foley.If both reports prove true, the GOP isn't just toast, it's burnt toast.
The pages served in the classes of 1998, 2000 and 2002. They independently approached ABC News after the Foley resignation through the Brian Ross & the Investigative Team's tip line on ABCNews.com. None wanted their names used because of the sensitive nature of the communications.
Kinda reminds you of Bush Sr.'s Boys Town, Credit Union sex scandal starring sicko Larry Franklin, don't it? Haven't heard of it? Not surprising. It got killed by most "respectable" news outlets. (Raw Story's Larisa Alexandrovna told me about it in a really, really long phone call in 2005.)
UPDATE: Now Congresscritter Ferguson gets caught at a Washington college bar.
UPDATE: Kevin Drum's heard rumors that two more politicos are about to get swept up in this unholy mess. (Via Democratic Underground.)
NOTE: One thing that's never made sense to me about all the previous data theft stories is how it's even possible. How do you steal 19,000 laptops? Don't people take them home? What gives? And why am I (seemingly) the only person to wonder why the MSM seemed uninterested in investigating such a huge number of thefts occurring in just a few months?
The first article is Mahdi Darius Nazemroaya's thoroughly researched "The March to War: Naval build-up in the Persian Gulf and the Eastern Mediterranean." The second is Wayne Madsen's special report of September 17-18 (scroll all the way down), which is stunning in its detail and connects the CIA, Bob Ney, Iran, Valerie Plame, Armitage and a bunch of arms smuggling and dirty dealing. I hate to say it, but these two articles make Hersh and Woodward look neophytes.
UPDATE: More reason to think war with Iran is a few short blocks away. But here's the clincher: The plan was requested in the event of another 9/11 attack. Put that together with the indications that the war will occur in October (or possibly a month later, post-election) and you'll understand why I'm a bit anxious. Add to it the Halliburton-constructed detention centers and the abrogation of Habeas Corpus, and you'll understand why leaving the country is an option everyone should consider. Moreover, in light of the outright, nationwide theft of the last two elections and you'll understand why the next five weeks are critical to the country.
UPDATE: Raw Story reports on what the, er, NYT reports. Why didn't I link directly to the NYT's account? I don't bother reading them. I don't bother with the MSM, even when they (rarely) do their jobs--and I mean that as a criticism of owners and editors, not reporters, who often see their stories killed. The MSM is on life-support. There's no reason to read them. Read Raw Story, Online Journal and Global Research if you want to know what the fuck's going on in the world.
UPDATE: Turns out, I did use the verb in its original meaning at least once before.
Note: If you want the most reliable, open-source, damning information on how and why the US gov't perpetrated 9/11, read Ahmed's book. It's overwhelming, and it doesn't even touch on the controlled demolition of the WTC or the plane that did or didn't hit the Pentagon.
UPDATE: The Daily Show features clips on Condi's typical lying shenanigans. Then again, she was right to assert post-9/11 that "there were no warnings" and that "nobody could have predicted they would use planes as missles." And the August 6 PDB was merely "historic"; the ambiguous, misleading title was only "Bin Laden Determined to Strike within the United States." Who could blame her for not acting against Al Qaeda?
UPDATE: Olbermann runs down the Clarke plan the Clintonistas developed for lyin' Condi and what she didn't do with it.
Hill sources tell TPMmuckraker that the administration has been sitting on the report, trying to prevent its dissemination before the election, presumably. And it turns out, from what we've heard, that this NIE actually hasn't been given the official "NIE" label because doing that would have required sharing it with various members of Congress.Call your congresscritter and tell them to demand this other report be released as well.
UPDATE: I don't know what's in that shit, but my only unforgiveably embarrassing moments came from drinking too much of it. In the only instance I'm willing to repeat (Amanda knows the one I'm not willing to), I attended an office party for Innovative Emergency Management with a hot German chick who, at one point, plopped down a bottle of Cuervo (I actually went to college with a Puerto Rican named Jose Cuervo--not kidding). That's the last thing I remember. The next Monday, my officemate informed me that I'd poured the remainder of the bottle over our receptionist's head and offered to lick it off. I was being honest, and would still love to do that, but red-faced and shuffling, I apologized to her. Had I been sober, I would've known that no one would enjoy having Cuervo poured over them, no matter how it may have been removed.
UPDATE: It's hard to explain, but reading Chris Rose's piece in today's paper made me cry. Then again, so much around here makes so many of us cry. We cried every day for months. Now we just cry once or twice a week.
UPDATE: If you don't know the quintessential New Orleans song "Hey Pock A-way," listen to it here (requires plugin). I don't ordinarily name-drop, but as the ex-roommate of the most famous young drummer in the world (literally), Brian Blade, I have him to thank for introducing me to The Meters--and he can thank his Baptist-preacher dad for introducing him to same.
What I learned: Stewardesses are petty tyrants. Maybe not all of them, but after years of flying, my dense brain finally caught on to the striking similarity between kindergarten teachers and stewardesses. A hefty percentage of both professions is filled with people who love to tell others what to do and take argument little better than cops do. Example: When we were about to land at JFK, a Jennifer-Connelly-looking stewardess told me to put my shoulder bag in the overhead compartment. I complied, but (god forbid) sighed. She turned and walked back to me and told me in no uncertain terms that it was "for safety reasons." I pointed out that I hadn't said anything, and she responded, "I heard you sigh." Um, yeah, okay. Sorry for registering my discontent. Pogue mahone.
If I can locate (or purchase) the wire for my camera, I'll post what few pictures I took.
UPDATE (not really): I haven't read the comments and probably won't. Anyway, that last bit was over the top. No, don't go fuck yourself, just don't vote. Or at least do your homework first (no, that doesn't mean read presidential statements and conservablogs, it means read actual sources and news reports, like the rest of us do).
In our time the destiny of man presents its meanings in
- Thomas Mann
HOW can I, that girl standing there,
My attention fix
On Roman or on Russian
Or on Spanish politics?
Yet here's a travelled man that knows
What he talks about,
And there's a politician
That has read and thought,
And maybe what they say is true
Of war and war's alarms,
But O that I were young again
And held her in my arms!
Sorry, I am not a blog reader and I do not understand what all you have been saying of a political nature. Your mother and I did not raise you to be a democrat. What is the specific issue? Are you involved in a civic capacity to improve situations or just complaining?(Emphasis mine.)
I'm not sure what my dad meant by "just complaining," since that's what all the howling monkeys on the unhinged Right were doing for Clinton's two terms--with a stained dress as a pitiful excuse. I wouldn't term screaming about the shredding of the Fourth Amendment "just complaining." Be that as it may, I found it amusing that my father called forth the reason that he and my long-deceased mother didn't "raise" me to be a democrat. So true. Neither did they raise me to be an atheist, a libertine, a well-read and -educated person, a writer, an artist or anything else, for that matter. I much appreciate that they encouraged me to do what I wanted and what suited my talents. I have many friends who were torn apart early in life thanks to sick parental policies which I had none of. So kudos for my parents. But my dad has no right to mention how I was raised. He was raised a Catholic or Universalist, depending on which parent you speak of; he was also raised to beat children, drink copious amounts of liquor and indulge in "engineering." So what?
Presumably, my father didn't raise me to get divorced. And yet I did just that. Neither was he raised to remarry before my mother was in the ground a year. Nor was either of us raised to be a serial killer, a philanderer, a thief or a greedy politico. My answer to my unthinking father: Tough shit.
The overwhelming majority of Germans did not seem to mind that their personal freedom had been taken away, that so much of culture had been destroyed and replaced with a mindless barbarism, or that their life and work had become regimented to a degree never before experienced even by a people accustomed for generations to a great deal of regimentation.... The Nazi terror in the early years affected the lives of relatively few Germans and a newly arrived observer was somewhat surprised to see that the people of this country did not seem to feel that they were being cowed.... On the contrary, they supported it with genuine enthusiasm. Somehow it imbued them with a new hope and a new confidence and an astonishing faith in the future of their country.Fuck the Fourth Amendment. Our Glorious Il Duce will lead us into the shining corporatist future!
He also has a blog.
Highly recommended. If you want to know what's really going on, Ahmed is the most insightful, thorough analyst next to Michael Chossudovsky. By far the two best sites for cutting-edge information that even blue bloggers won't report are The Online Journal and Global Research.
But that's not why I posted about this. What initially struck me was that the director got the accents right. If you're not a Louisianian, that may mean nothing to you. But for ages, film crews have shot here and, despite the accents of the help which they never seem to hear, they never portray Louisiana accents accurately. We don't have southern accents. We have an odd blend of French, English and Italian (and even German and Irish) accents that are more akin to those of Brooklyn than anything in the South. Thanks for getting it right.
UPDATE: Lost and lonely Malloy listeners who perchance happen upon this space may want to know whom to call or email about this "business decision." From Mike Malloy: call 212-871-8290 or email to: firstname.lastname@example.org
And remember, Mike's replacement Peter Werbe's in an awkward spot. So be nice to him. He neither asked for nor expected this shit.
The latest developments in the murder of the Baluch leader, Bugti, is a case in point: Pakistan is in an uproar and calling for his resignation.As with the initial US-led 9/11 attack, perhaps yet again the bombing will commence before "the snows fall in October"....
Why would the axis-of-evil crusaders want to destabilize a crucial ally? They don't "want" to, but they have bigger plans.
The US has three military bases in Baluchistan. They say they are fighting Al Qaeda and Taliban forces in the region. Perhaps. But, Baluchistan borders with Iran to the west. Baluchistan, too, is rich in natural gas and minerals. China is helping the Pakistani government to build a natural gas pipeline from Baluchistan's port of Gwadar to China, a project the Bush administration opposes. The port of Gwadar just happens to be geographically located to overlook the Straits of Hormuz, which the Iranians intend to block if they are attacked. Hormuz is the crucial sea route for internatinal oil distribution.
Coincidence that the US should be interested in "terrorism" in Baluchistan and urging Musharraf to be more zealous at the same time that it is planning an attack on Iran?
An article by the Carnegie Endowment entertains the same thought, albeit to deny it: "The Baluch and the Pakistani think that Washington would like to use Baluchistan as a rear-guard base for an attack on Iran, and Iran is suspected of supporting Baluch [independence] activists in order to counter such a Pakistani-US plot. . . . Some Pakistanis perceive the US using its Greater Middle East initiative to dismantle the major Muslim states and redefine the borders of the region. Some Baluch nationalists charge the US with conspiring with the Pakistani government to put an end to Baluch claims. So far nobody has been able to prove any of these accusations."
No? No matter, the Iranians have been mining their side of the Baluch borders, just in case, and Bugti, Baluch independence leader, has been killed by the diplomatically besieged Musharraf, catapulting the country into a political crisis.
UPDATE: A January 23, 2005 article in the London Telegraph confirms Hersh's report.
UPDATE: Remind me again why Iran is a "threat"? I'm sorry, but the rabidly insecure, bedwetting Krauthammers, Perles, Olmerts and Bushes of this world are full of shit. Ahmadinejad, as much of a right-leaning blowhard as he may be (he didn't call for Israel to be "wiped off the map") wants diplomatic relations and trade with the US. Iran's wanted that for years. Does no one in the GOP remember the Mob's advice to "keep your friends close but your enemies closer"? It's sound advice. Plus, even though Iran is well within its rights to develop nuclear power, it's years away from developing a bomb (even if it's trying to do so). And even if it gets the bomb, it will never use it. If it did, it knows it would be obliterated by either Israel or the United States. These people aren't crazy--well, no more than the blustery but harmless Pat Robertson. The real boss of Iran, Ayatollah Khamenei, is a cool pragmatist with a moderate approach to regional difficulties. We may not like his approach to governance, but he's no idiot. He's closer to Kruschev than to the paranoid Stalin. The way to eliminate Iran as a threat is the same way to eliminate everyone as a threat: Mind our own business, stop starting wars and overthrowing governments, strengthen diplomatic and trade ties, give money for development, exchange students, be the generous guy who buys the drinks and respects your space and opinion. Then everyone will love you, will tell you about any impending threats and will back you when you're in a corner. These fucking neocons are stone-cold idiots.
NOT AN UPDATE EXACTLY: Just another point that I made to a mystery reporter the other night (thanks for the hours-long conversation): If the present Administration cared about actual threats instead of pretexts, it would focus on North Korea. That place is run by a--does this sound familiar?--spoiled trust-fund baby who craves power and attention (flip side of coin). It doesn't help that that country is so poor and badly run (familiar?) that Kim Jong Il resorts to international smuggling to pay the bills. That creates a situation to sell nukes as tempting as a soldier sequestered in the Hanoi Hilton feels for any dumpy prostitute. Anyone with any sense would worry about the pompadoured dictator selling arms to monied clients. The only upside there is that he promised Saddam nukes but took his millions and gave him nothing. At least his cheatin' heart gives us hope.
Note: In a stunning twist of events, Palast's reports on Katrina are not breathtakingly shocking. For once, he's coving a story that other actual American journalists covered. Remarkable. Too bad they don't follow him around.
Oh, and Palast doesn't do my former employer IEM any favors. They were paid $500k to come up with an evacuation plan--a task for which they're probably one of the best firms in the country. Too bad nobody can find the plan. Fuck IEM.
BONUS: The guy with his hand in the lens urging Palast's crew out the door is the longtime (and pretty brilliant) IT manager, Dave.
Anyway, per Johnston's advice, check out ire.org.
Take a look for yourself. BTW, I can think of a remarkably similar and much more stimulating form of exercise. You can do it with a partner or, if you're so inclined, buy a Sybian....
(Via Ana Marie [ahem, Cox] subbing for Sully.)
UPDATE: Good Christ, Power Line's uber-moron Assrocket fellates Bush (again). He thinks that
...up close, he is a great communicator, in a way that, in my opinion, Ronald Reagan was not....Oh my fucking god. Somebody put this man out of my misery.
He was by turns instructive, persuasive, and funny. His persona is very much that of the big brother. Above all, he was impassioned. I have never seen a politician speak so evidently from the heart, about big issues—freedom, most of all.
BONUS: Mad TV comic Frank Caliendo is as good as Rich Little--but a lot funnier. His Bush and Clinton impressions are unbelievable.
SUPER HAPPY BONUS: Tired of all the bloodletting, election theft and Halliburton mischief? Take a break with David Sedaris.
From the concluding paragraph:
Iran has been very conscious for a long time of the hostile American-led forces encircling Iran and on its borders in the occupied territories of its neighbours, Iraq and Afghanistan, and stationed in bases in other Iranian neighbours. It has also reported that the Interior Ministry of Iran also has simultaneously planned to boost border security and all border patrols under the premise of combating smuggling and narcotics trafficking. 17 Military manoeuvres and war games can be multi-faceted and could easily serve many purposes such as being masked military mobilization and formation for an expected attack under the pretext of training and testing. It seems that the materialization of an escalating level of alert and defensive mobilization of the Iranian Armed Forces is taking place as an inevitable and anticipated showdown over the fate of the Iranian Nuclear Energy Program is drawing nearer and with it are coupled the fates of Palestine, Israel, Iraq, Lebanon, Afghanistan, Syria, Sudan, the Persian Gulf, the direction of Central Asia, he strategic balance in the Caucasus, and so much more…Meanwhile, Iran is set to announce a "nuclear breakthrough," with one week remaining before the Security Council deadline.
UPDATE: I don't know why Atrios is confused about the blatant plotting against Iran. The question isn't whether Bush™ wants to bomb them (either directly or via our favorite Middle East proxy), it's when they'll try it. Even that isn't up for much debate now. The remaining salient question is: will the Democrats try to stop them, will Iran make a deal, will there be too little public support? Who knows.
WASHINGTON (MarketWatch) - The United States is headed for a recession that will be "much nastier, deeper and more protracted" than the 2001 recession, says Nouriel Roubini, president of Roubini Global Economics.Fun. At least it'll be a good time to buy a house. If you have a job.
Writing on his blog on Wednesday, Roubini repeated his call that the U.S. would be in a recession in 2007, arguing that the collapse of housing will bring down the rest of the economy. Read more.
"This is the biggest housing slump in the last four or five decades: every housing indictor is in free fall, including now housing prices," Roubini said. The decline in investment in the housing sector will exceed the drop in investment when the Nasdaq collapsed in 2000 and 2001, he said.
Let's assume for the sake of argument that he's sincere. Given that "the enemy" has gone as far west as Britain, I suggest we attack some poor, third-world country farther east, say, North Korea. That way, maybe "the enemy" will move east as well. Maybe they'll go as far as Iraq.
*In a previous version of this post, I had "Evan" instead of "Logan." Sorry; I have a hard time with names. Anyway, we're still all sorts of glad that Logan's doing well. May his kine produce milk and his sheep abundant wool. Selah.
Note: This has gone mostly unremarked, but I think it's critical: Neil Young's marketing approach is innovative and savvy. Like Willy Nelson and the Dixie Chicks, he has a name as big as Bush's that guarantees automatic distribution and sales. And yet, what did he (or his marketing people) do? He made a clever website mocking USA Today that, unlike the paper, keeps visitors abreast of the actual news. He made a MySpace page (MySpace was created to give musicians a way to publicize their work before it because a hangout for horny teens and adults). He let you listen to the song for free. As if that wasn't enough, he put videos on YouTube. That's one smart man. It took the Democrats years to figure out that orgs like MoveOn were on the cutting edge of political advertising (they still haven't figured out how to talk, though). But Neil Young? He was way on up in that biyatch from the get go.
Tonight is the HBO television premiere of Lee's When the Levees Broke. (If I'd been paying attention, I would've known about the local premiere and seen it then.) I've heard only good reviews of this film, and from the clips I've seen, it's probably your one chance to get even a faint idea of the extent of devastation here--still present a year later. I've shown you photos of Lakeview and the Lower Ninth Ward, but you can't begin to understand it unless you watch long tracking shots of entire blocks. I've said before that it looks like Hiroshima but without the burn victims dying of radiation poisoning. That's still true today.
The wooden houses of the Ninth look like piles of matchsticks. Though Gentilly, N.O. East and Lakeview suffered the same fate, most of the houses were brick, so they're still standing. That landscape looks like the cities in Battlestar Galactica: as if a hydrogen bomb had been tested there, leaving nothing but a thin film of gray ash as a pall over the landscape and giant piles of debris and personal detritus on the sidewalk.
Imagine if 9/11 had destroyed 2/3 of Manhattan. That's what New Orleans looked like in January. It still looks like that today. And Spike Lee has captured it on videotape.