Saturday, September 22, 2007

Into The Wild Blue, w/o a Net or 'Chute

Two F-22s of the 27th FS fly in formation with an F-15 over the Virginia countryside during a training sortie. (USAF photo by TSgt. Ben Bloker)
Just Another Blog (From L. A.)™ stands behind no "web log" in digging the USAF, 'cause we like fast planes & missiles & stuff (not people, just stuff) blowing up. So when the Google™ news feed brought this to our attention, via Wired's "Danger Room," we were both saddened & amused, because if there's one thing we like more than things going fast & blowin' up, it's schadenfreude, baby. 'Specially if it's 'cause some dimbulb who should've known better "screwed the pooch," as they say in the AF.

September 21, 2007— The Air Force’s attempts to fund replacement of its aged aircraft fleet by cutting personnel is failing, and if Congress and the White House don’t provide an infusion of cash soon, the service will no longer be able to win wars, Air Force Secretary Michael Wynne declared.
[..]
The Air Force’s older fighters aren’t up to defeating a modern air defense system or modern foreign fighters, Wynne said, and in a fight with Venezuela or Iran, such aircraft would probably be shot down. “No [USAF] fourth-generation fighter would be allowed into war over Tehran or over Caracas, once they buy what the Russians are selling them,” Wynne said. He noted that as far back as 1999, only stealthy B-2s and F-117s were actually allowed to overfly the murderous air defenses around Belgrade in operation Allied Force, and foreign air defense systems have improved dramatically since then.
Tehran we've heard about. Now Caracas is on the target list too?

More @ Danger Room, & they're linking like crazy. But this is our favorite part, 'cause we like the Navy & Marine Corps best of all, what their being a complete fighting force & all that (The Army? Well, tanks are alright, but there's a lot of walking & stuff involved.):

And don't forget the Navy. With a fleet of more than 20 mobile airfields (aka "aircraft carriers") boasting a mix of choppers, radar planes, the nation's only fast tactical jammer jets plus the affordable, flexible F/A-18E/F Super Hornet with a brand-new super-smart electronically scanned radar, these days the Navy is a better air force than the Air Force.
The only thing it doesn't do that the A.F. does is heavy airlift and heavy aerial tanking. So when the Air Force disbands out of despair, hopefully sometime next year, I would propose transfering those missions to the Navy ... and giving the Air Force's Predator drones to the Army, which would probably make better use of them anyway.
Also: interesting editorial from AF Mag.

Friday, September 21, 2007

Who You Gonna Believe, Me or Those Lying Photos? (UPDATED)

Mark Hemingway of NRO on the beating of Gold Star father Carlos Arredondo by self-styled patriots in Wash., D. C. last Saturday:

Arredondo was bringing up the rear of the march; almost everybody was already on the Capitol lawn when he came by dragging his casket. Fred Peterson, an ex-Marine, was standing off to the side of the road. Peterson was upset, not just as a participant in the counterprotest offended by the marcher’s politics and their perceived lack of patriotism, but because he felt exploiting the death of a fallen Marine crossed a line. Fred walked out into the street and snatched the picture off of the casket. Arredondo didn’t even know what happened until it was pointed out to him by others. By the time Arredondo figured it out, Peterson was walking away. In a rage, Arredondo took off and tackled Peterson from behind at a full run. Arredondo was pulled off Peterson very quickly by a number of Peterson’s fellow veterans and counterprotesters, but not before Peterson was bloodied in the ensuing scuffle.
Here's brave Fred's boo-boo, from NRO. Oh, & just for the hell of it, here's a picture (of several) of Arredondo being kicked while down:Colorful emphasis added by Just Another Blog™. Now let's compare & contrast. From AfterDowningStreet, by Mélida Arredondo, Carlos' wife & the stepmother of Carlos' son, Alex, a Marine who was killed in Iraq a little over three years ago:

As Carlos passed counter protesters, one man ripped a picture of Alex from the memorial. Carlos leaped on the man to retrieve the picture. It was at that point that approximately five others all began to attack Carlos by kicking him in the head, legs, stomach and back. The Capitol police bicycle patrol then appeared to break up the fight. Several officers including a female officer were engaged in breaking up the fight and were able to stop any further injuries from occurring. Hannah Jones who was walking with Carlos was also assaulted.
[...]
Soon, an ambulance showed up as well as many concerned activists. The paramedics provided first aid to Carlos but he did not seek further medical attention. Carlos sustained bloody cuts on his shins. He also reported bruises all over his torso and head where he was kicked.

More crap from Hemingway, writing in the present tense, yet.
While Arredondo is leaving, four young boys are walking by and hear what happened. They walk up to Peterson and made a point of shaking his hand. They’re all barely out of high school, “8th and I boys” as they’re known in D.C., after the address of the local Marine barracks. As soon as Peterson hears this he exclaims, “My brothers!” and is all smiles and backslaps. He gestures wildly toward the thousands of protesters on the lawn above him and tells them, “One drop of your blood is worth more than all of theirs, and don’t let anyone tell you otherwise.” They nod respectfully and say “Yes, sir.” It’s too bad they met like this — if Peterson could have met
Arredondo under different circumstances, he would have told him how valuable his son’s sacrifice is. As it is, Fred has two children in the military, including a daughter at the Naval Academy.

Yes. Please tell him how valuable his son's sacrifice was. We're sure he wants to hear it from the sad-ass losers who make wars possible. Valuable to the rabid bloodlust of assholes like Fred "Mommy, look at my boo-boo" Peterson. Or the greed & powerlust of Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld, ad nauseum. Or to the profit margins of various & sundry corporations. Not very valuable as far "keeping our country safe." Oh, don't forget honor, duty, country & all the other bogus words used to keep tools like the Gathering of Eagles in line. Look at their site. See how honorable & patriotic they are. Read some of the comments. "Liberals. Moonbats. Our way of life." The same tired clichés of the poorly educated, ignorant & brain-dead.

From the GOE Mission Statement:

1. Gathering of Eagles is non-partisan. While each member has his or her own political beliefs, our common love and respect for America and her heroes is what brings us together.
2. We are a non-violent, non-confrontational group. We look to defend, not attack. Our focus is guarding our memorials and their grounds.
3. We believe that the war memorials are sacred ground; as such, we will not allow them to be desecrated, used as props for political statements, or treated with anything less than the solemn and heartfelt respect they–and the heroes they honor–deserve.

Non-partisan, except that only drooling right wing patriots fetishize war memorials, and call them "sacred." How 'bout when Bush & Cheney use living service personnel as backdrops for their political activities. Haven't heard much complaining about that from the Gathering of Eagles. And of course they're non-violent. Just look at their expressions while they're kicking Carlos Arredondo.

Just one item from the GOE forum, w/ some words from Boo-boo Fred:

This guy Carlos is a certifiable NUTCASE…PERIOD.
While I feel for any Gold Star family member. Having a son or father, sister, brother or mother killed in defense of their country AND it's way of life, does NOT give one the right to desecrate the memory of that fallen hero in furtherance of the cause of everything CONTRARY to the beliefs of said country. This guy Carlos has been co-opted by the left for their own political gains and his nationwide "road-show, street theater" makes a mockery of every other Gold Star family out
there. Cindy Sheehan has made her place in history by exploiting the honorable service of her son, and our little Carlos is being PAID to do the same in his own sick twisted way throughout the country with the death of his.
Remember folks, that this guy went ballistic when the Marines came to his house with the news. He took a hammer to their van, and then tried to douse it with gasoline and light it on fire! We as a society don't tolerate nut-jobs going whacko on people just because they're "feeling pain in their hearts". Nor should we. This guy belongs in an institution, not on the news as a poster boy for "the agony of loss". Besides, he's flat out LYING about the circumstances of his "scuffle".
How do I know this? Because the animal BIT ME! Yes, I'm the guy that he bit. This freakshow would be in jail now, were it not for the compassion of Fred Peterson, (a 61 yr old, arthritic, Viet-Nam vet) who was attacked from BEHIND, and myself not pressing charges against the nut-case for his assault on US! He attacked Fred. I pulled him off. He BIT ME! When that kind of savagery takes place…all bets should be off. But the HUMANS chose to let sleeping dogs lie…so to speak.
Here below is the account from the Eagle he attacked. You can decide who to believe…but I was there. After reading what the pathetic BITER is saying now, I wish we HAD pressed charges. Perhaps he's be singing a different tune. But I doubt it. His handlers love the lie.

From the pen of Fred Peterson:
I was leaving Capitol Grounds. The activity there had just about ended with the arrest of over 600 provocateurs and agents 'anti-war' of violence. There, we Eagles had organized teams of six men - mostly veterans- to protect the safety of Gold Star Moms (and Dads) from the physical threats and insults of hard-edge left socialists, Seattle anarchists, random lefty Raggamuffins and reflexive anti-Americans who made up the ANSWER Coalition …
I had spent the day in the company of an American hero - a youthful Army amputee, who wanted only to rejoin his brothers and renew his sacrifice indefense of country. It was a humbling and inspirational experience, to be in the presence of such selfless virtue in one so young and brave. It invited a camaraderie of high principle and enervated a keen sense of obligation to preserve and protect these worthy veterans from the predations of those lessers who insult their country and cause…
My teams broke up at the Capitol, mission accomplished, and I was walking alone back to the Mall when I saw the photo-image of a proud young Marine in dress blues being held hostage in company not of his own choosing and affixed to a coffin not his own.
The insult to his honor and disrespect to his Corps and cause by his captors was immediately obvious and intended. These same peddlers of provocation are paid to push their coffin-prop
all over the country they revile. They subvert a common will and undermine the cause and country for which this hostage-Marine had sacrificed his very life.
The captive Marine was not among his own.
He was surrounded and outnumbered by those who shamelessly exploit hisi mage and memory, disgrace his uniform, his brothers in arms, and his willing sacrifice. He would never choose such company. He needed a rescue…
I liberated his image from the midst of the hostile crowd, intending to replace it in a position of honor Arlington, where he would rest with heroes and among his own…I respectfully carried the image of the fallen Marine and was not opposed nor confronted in any way until I has walked perhaps 25 yards down the sidewalk. There, I was attacked without warning and tackled from behind by a demonstrator who crashed into my back at a full run. I went down forward, tearing pants knees and shirt sleeve and five separate wounds requiring hospital attention. The Marine's image, along with camera and sunglasses were smashed into the pavement. Before I could respond, six or so Eagles-vets were immediately pulling me away from the anti-war attacker. One Eagle was holding the attacker and yelling, "He's biting off my arm! I cannot believe this (A-Hole) is biting my arm!" That Eagle also went to the hospital where he was treated and given shots.
Other Eagles separated the two and held the attacker/biter for the police. Police Interviews were conducted and Eagles were asked if they wanted to prefer charges… No charges were filed by Eagles, who are unaccustomed to whining about minor injuries when they stand in defense of larger principles unappreciated - uncomprehended - by their attackers. Two Gold Star Mothers who witnessed the entire episode and gave police statements said, "I am so proud of what you did! I wanted to do it myself … That coffin is such a disgrace to my son and all the others who have died to help others be free. Thank you so much! It made my day."
Well, actually, - those few precious words, from one who has given the full measure of issue from her own body to the defense of our country, 'made my day' also …
Semper Fidelis.

Your Editor® has seldom read anything more flat out stupid & foolish in his life. Wouldn't it be nice if people were just a tad more concerned w/ the living & suffering than w/ the images & memorials of the dead? Not likely to happen though, as it might require actual cogitation on their part, & the realization that all the "values" they've dedicated themselves to are as empty as their heads.

Added Info (23 September 2007 @ 0030): From Sadly, No!, where your editor was first inspired to do the searching that led to this item, comes this informative comment:

J— said,
September 22, 2007 at
16:32 [Kraut time. -9:00 for PDT.]
That Peterson text is fascinating, and not just for its “Cara al sol” tone and tenor. I’m especially struck by Peterson’s fetishization of Alexander Arredondo’s image. It reminds me of a practice in 17th- and 18th-century Spain and Spanish America, in which portraits of the monarch were taken not as representations but as physical embodiments of the monarch himself (see Osorio 2004). I’m sure there are examples of similar beliefs and practices elsewhere.

How Much Can You Hate George Bush? (CORRECTED)

Here's someone else who hates George Bush (both of them) & all their kind & is willing to say so, no punches pulled. And she's not even a Yanqui. Especially swell is her link to a 2003 Guardian story. If we can't impeach the bastard, it's time to think assassination. Top that, liberal cowards!! Caught W/ Our Sexist Pants Down Dep't. (23 September 2007 @0117): Palau of progressive gold is of the female persuasion (see comments). We've corrected the pronoun & possessive above. Sorry, guv'nor!! Speaking of politicians who may need a beatdown, Dianne Feinstein, whorewife of an investment banker, the bitch who came to prominence on the body of San Francisco's murdered mayor George Moscone, voted to condemn or censure or just whine about that stupid MoveOn.org advertisement that got the pro-baby-killing element of the U. S. Senate in a tizzy. California residents are invited to express their displeasure here.

Pants Wetting for People Young Enough to Get Away w/ It

By now Why Do The Terrorists Want to Hurt Me? is probably all over the web, but here's a chance to look at it. It's a Flash book, so you don't have to turn the pages, and it's read to you. Perfect for the intended audience. Tip of the Bouffant chapeau to the local yokels @ World O' Crap, who claim it appeared as if by magic in their e-mail in-box. And are kind enough to put this mess on their blogroll, so why we're being mean & calling them yokels just because it rhymes w/ locals is beyond us, but we're deeply, severely, disturbed. Personally, & by everything that happens around us.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Murdering Mercenary Mo-fos

Graphic from Danger Room.
Blackwater contractors, shown in 2005, have an arsenal of helicopters, turreted armored vehicles and automatic weapons at their service.
(Marwan Naamani/AFP/Getty Images)
Leading U. S. newspapers on the private security "incident" in Baghdad.

The L. A. Times:

The swift response to Sunday's deaths marked Iraq's boldest step to assert itself against foreign security contractors who have long been accused of racing through Baghdad's streets and firing without restraint at anyone they see as a threat. It also cast a focus on the continued lack of control by American officials over heavily armed private security contractors, at least 20,000 of whom supplement the U.S.-led military forces that invaded Iraq in March 2003.
[...]
Among fellow security companies in Baghdad, Blackwater is often disliked and even feared. "They are untouchable. They've shot up other private security contractors, Iraqi military, police and civilians," said one security contractor, who declined to give his name because of the sensitivity of the issue.
One contractor described an incident three weeks ago in which a four-vehicle Blackwater convoy pushed through a crowded Baghdad street and pointed a gun at his team, even though they waved an American flag -- an indicator used by security contractors to identify themselves to one another.
There have been several fatal shootings involving Blackwater since late last year. On Christmas Eve, a Blackwater employee walking in the Green Zone stopped by an Iraqi checkpoint and, after an argument, fatally shot an Iraqi guard for Vice President Adel Abdul Mehdi, said an Iraqi official and a U.S. diplomat.
Interior Ministry spokesman Khalaf said his government was still investigating the fatal shooting of an elderly man who was speeding by a Blackwater convoy earlier this year.

More LAT:

At a news conference, an angry Maliki said North Carolina-based Blackwater, which has nearly 1,000 employees in Iraq, was also responsible for six similar shootings since being hired by the U.S. State Department to guard its diplomats after the American-led invasion of Iraq in March 2003."This crime has inflamed contempt, hatred and anger both from the government and the Iraqi public," Maliki said. "Hence, it is important that this company's activities be frozen and the American Embassy invest in the services of another one." Maliki reiterated that a preliminary investigation by the Iraqi government found that a Blackwater security detail had fired without provocation Sunday at a traffic circle in Baghdad's Mansour district. As of Wednesday, 11 Iraqi citizens had died as a result of the shooting, Interior Ministry spokesman Brig. Gen. Abdul Kareem Khalaf said."This company should be punished," Maliki said. "We are not going to allow it to kill Iraqis in cold blood."
[...]
Private security contractors are also beginning to draw criticism from Congress. Rep. Henry A. Waxman (D-Los Angeles), chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, has announced plans to hold hearings on
Blackwater and the Bush administration's use of private security contractors in war zones. Waxman said the hearings would probe the U.S. government's "excessive reliance" on such contractors.

He also has accused a top State Department official of blocking investigations of fraud and waste, including a Justice Department inquiry of charges that a firm identified as Blackwater may have smuggled weapons into Iraq.

WaPo:
The shooting has inflamed deep-seated frustrations with Blackwater among Iraqis, many of whom view the company's contractors as highly paid bullies with no respect for the citizens and customs of the country where they work. Iraqi officials were quick to speak out after Sunday's incident, and the State Department suspended all ground travel outside the Green Zone for its diplomats.
[...]
A preliminary report from Blackwater indicated that Sunday's violence began when a State Department motorcade was ambushed, but Maliki and other Iraqi officials disputed that account. Government spokesman Ali al-Dabbagh said an initial probe shows that the guards opened fire when a car failed to stop at a police officer's command and pulled into traffic. The
gunfire killed as many as 28 people, including a couple and their infant, he said.


Lots more, from the WaPo:

"The Iraqis despised them, because they were untouchable," said Matthew Degn, who recently returned from Baghdad after serving as senior American adviser to the Interior Ministry. "They were above the law." Degn said Blackwater's armed Little Bird helicopters often buzzed the Interior Ministry's roof, "almost like they were saying, 'Look, we can fly anywhere we want.' "
[...]
Blackwater's conduct at times inflamed tensions inside the Interior Ministry, Degn said. On May 24, Degn was evacuated from the building after an armed standoff between Interior Ministry commandos and Blackwater guards, who had shot and killed an Iraqi driver outside the gates. U.S. and Iraqi officials feared the incident might lead to retaliatory attacks against Americans.
"They are part of the reason for all the hatred that is directed at Americans, because people don't know them as Blackwater, they know them only as Americans," said an Interior Ministry official who spoke on the condition of anonymity because he feared for his safety. The official,
interviewed before Sunday's incident, said, "They are planting hatred, because of these irresponsible acts."

[...]
"Blackwater has no respect for the Iraqi people," the Interior Ministry official said. "They consider Iraqis like animals, although actually I think they may have more respect for animals. We have seen what they do in the streets. When they're not shooting, they're throwing water bottles at people and calling them names. If you are terrifying a child or an elderly woman, or you are killing an innocent civilian who is riding in his car, isn't that terrorism?"
Ann Exline Starr, a former Coalition Provisional Authority adviser, said she traveled in Iraq first with a military escort, then with guards from Blackwater and another State
Department-contracted security firm,
DynCorp International, as security in Iraq deteriorated.
The shift was startling, she said. The soldiers drank tea and played cards with the Iraqis. The security contractors, on the other hand, moved more aggressively, their only focus protecting Exline Starr.
"What they told me was, 'Our mission is to protect the principal at all costs. If that means pissing off the Iraqis, too bad,' " she recalled.

And from the NYT:

Between 20,000 and 30,000 civilians work for the United States in Iraq as private military contractors, part of a civilian work force that equals or exceeds the more than 160,000-person military force there. The State Department employs about 2,500 private military personnel, chiefly to guard American diplomats and sensitive facilities there. The three prime security contractors for the State Department are Blackwater, DynCorp International and Triple Canopy. Many of their workers are former military Special Forces troops such as Navy Seals and members of the Army’s elite Delta Force.
Officials with other security companies said Wednesday that Blackwater now was the dominant contractor for State Department diplomatic security in Iraq, making it all but
impossible for the State Department to operate without the company, at least in the short term. For the moment, the military will provide any security needed by the State Department in Iraq. But officials at other firms said that the State Department has in recent weeks awarded Blackwater another major contract, for helicopter-related services, a strong signal of the close relationship between the department and Blackwater.


Another NYT piece on Maliki's press conference here. Pretty well covered in the LAT & WaPo articles, so no excerpts.

Wired's Danger Room has a few words too.

You bet your ass the above selections were cherry-picked to make Blackwater™ look as bad as it is. Feel free to click on the "Old Media" stories for the other side's responses, which consist of platitudes such as "legal & appropriate," "investigations are ongoing," etc., and the usual refusals to comment.

And remember: Blackwater & its ilk will be in American towns & cities before you know it, providing "security" @ polling places, keeping you away fromprotecting your "elected" officials, and doing all sorts of things that sworn police officers can't or won't do. All under "special operating agreements." Republicans: Bringing libertarian "privatization" & Iraqi-style "democracy" to these United States. Just Another Blog™ just can't wait.

Onward & Upward w/ The Arts

Enough w/ the birthday & breast blogging, let's ease back into grim reality w/ a look or two @ the fate of the album.* Philip Freeman, editor in chief of Metal Edge, logs in @ the Los Angeles Times (While, of course, pimping his new book, an update of the desert island disc idea.):
I kept hearing from doubtful outsiders that the project didn't make sense because the album was dead, that it was all about downloads and iPod playlists, that people didn't listen to music "that way" anymore. Those doubters are wrong.
Maybe, maybe not. Not so sure that the "album preserved" by the same sort of oddball aesthete downloaders/"early adopters" Freeman refers to means it will last forever.
Furthermore, many albums posted and downloaded aren't new. They're old and frequently out of print, abandoned by labels that didn't see a profit in keeping them commercially available. So they're shared, fan to fan, among small virtual communities obsessed with '60s avant-garde jazz, obscure '70s hard rock or regional hip-hop from the '80s. Ever heard an MP3 crackle like vintage vinyl? Or one in which the sound wobbles like a cassette on the brink of unspooling? I have: It's the sound of the album preserved. [...] Media types frequently fixate on "early adopters," their own unacknowledged class biases allowing the actions of the ultra-hip few to overshadow the slower progress of the poorer, less tech-savvy majority. Even in the U.S., not everyone has an Internet connection fast enough to permit downloading of albums. I still see more Discmans than iPods in my New Jersey neighborhood; vinyl retains hipster cachet; and outside the U.S., especially in Africa and the Middle East, a whole lot of music continues to be sold on cassette. Ultimately, albums will exist as long as artists, and fans, want them to.
Our thoughts on this deal, as posted @ The Atlantic a few days ago:
I could go on about "young people today" & their shortened attention spans, but the truth is, the paradigm is no longer CDs (or, in my day, LPs) it's songs (as it was when rock 'n' roll first came to national attention). You'll note it's "iTunes," not "iAlbums." If a group (or one person, greater profit margin) can record a single, appealing song in their/his basement or wherever using a computer & sell, say, five million downloads @ 99¢ (don't know what Apple's cut is) they have a nice chunk of change w/ little monetary investment, & of course no record co. taking as much as "creative accounting" will allow. It's not necessary to have even an "LP's Worth of Tunes," to quote Todd Rundgren. And if you can get your tune in a national television commercial (a fairly recent development in the world of pop/indie/whatever music) you're on easy street, w/ royalties & exposure. Rather than crank out an album/CD a year, you really can get away w/, say, two popular/successful songs a year. And we all know how lazy musicians are. Posted by M. Bouffant September 9, 2007 9:32 PM
Recycling rules! Granted, we were making an attempt to explain the music biz to Ms. McArdle in the economic terms she's alleged to understand, &, as we so often do, talking off the top of our head, though it turns out she was in a band in college. And other commenters disagreed w/ us. So, who knows? And the NYT weighs in on the sales battle between Kanye West & 50 Cent.
Meanwhile music executives will stop celebrating and go back to scrambling as usual. They know that, when measuring the success of an album, first-week sales figures are sometimes less important than 20th-week sales figures. (You might argue that this week’s true sales winner is Fergie, whose solo debut, “The Dutchess,” has now spent an entire year on Billboard’s album chart; it currently sits at No. 6.) And they know that even a very good week — with three huge releases on the same day — doesn’t mean much in the context of yet another very bad year.
The best part is that the Times' style book requires the use of Mr. or Ms. or Mrs. before last names, yet Fiddy Cent is not called "Mr. Cent," but "50 Cent" throughout the piece. *Pointless, semi-interesting trivia: In the 1930s, when the discs weren't even vinyl but hard plastic coated in shellac, & spun @ 78 RPM, an entire symphony took six to ten discs, with the individual sleeves for the discs bound in a book like a photo album. Hence the term "album," first for the movements of a symphony, then for a collection of songs.

Sophia Loren Is a Mere 18 Years & 364 Days Older Than M. Bouffant

Look! Yet another Virgil is having a birthday. Must have something to do w/ cuddling up during long December nights. Let's examine Ms. Loren's career in photographs: We start w/ the obligatory European actress topless in the '50s shot: In Hollywood, & couldn't quite believe Jayne Mansfield.
Still can't believe her.
In the '70s (?) looking even better than in the '50s. And, just four months away from today, her 73rd birthday. Just don't forget the sunscreen.We might also point out that she's a much better actress than virtually all the other large-bosomed sex symbol types who first came to cinematic prominence in the 1950s. And that the editor of this blog is really a leg person, after the brain/humor part & the "Does this woman hate herself enough to put up w/ me?" part.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Sad Bear

Sad Bear 1, by Nedroid.
(The Editor of this "web log" is sad, though not a "bear," not that there's anything wrong w/ that, or in any way affiliated w/ any bears, & indeed isn't very hairy, except for what's atop his head, which, unlike, say, his teeth, is not yet falling out, just turning a distinguished white.) It's just that we encountered this in our web wanderings, & felt it appropriate for today's theme.

Today in History

BIRTHS:
1907 Lewis F. Powell Jr, VA, Supreme Court justice (1972-87)
1926 Edwin "Duke" Snider, Brooklyn Dodgers centerfielder (406 HRs)
1926 Lurleen (Mrs. George) Wallace (Gov-D-Ala)
1928 Adam West [William West Anderson], Walla Walla, WA, actor (Batman, Last Precinct)
1932 Mike Royko, Chicago, IL, journalist (Chicago Daily News)/author (Boss)
1931 Brook Benton, Camden, SC, singer
1933 David McCallum, Glasgow, Scotland, actor (Ilya Kuryakin-Man From UNCLE, "Ducky"-NCIS)
1940 Bill Medley, Santa Ana, CA, rocker (Righteous Bros.)
1940 Paul Williams, singer/composer/actor (Planet of the Apes)
1943 Mama Cass Elliot, Baltimore, MD, singer (Mamas & Papas)
1945 Freda Payne, Detroit, MI, singer
1945 Randolph Mantooth, Sacramento CA, actor (Emergency, Loving)
1948 Jeremy Irons, England, actor (French Lieutenant's Woman)
1948 Michael Cooper, San Francisco, CA, sodomizer (FBI Most Wanted List)
1949 Twiggy Lawson [Leslie Hornby], England, model/actress (Boyfriend)
1950 Joan Lunden, Fair Oaks, CA, news host (Good Morning America)
1952 Nile Rodgers, music producer
1953 Malignant "Chas." Bouffant [FKA Dr. Jazs], San Francisco, CA, loner w/ problems, blogger (Just Another Blog [From L. A.]™, Fire Megan McArdle)
1954 Allan Havey, St. Louis, MO, comedian, actor, TV host (Night After Night)
Some younger people located a bit later:
1958 Lita Ford, musician
1964 Trisha Yearwood, country singer
1965 Cheri Oteri, actress (SNL)
1974 Jimmy Fallon, actor (SNL)
1980 Tegan & Sara, singing/songwriting twins

DEATHS:
1881 James A. Garfield,
U. S. president, assassinated
1968 Red Foley, country singer, 58

EVENTS:
1796 George Washington's farewell address as president
1846 Elizabeth Barrett & Robert Browning elope
1848 Bond (US) & Lassell (England) independently discover Hyperion, moon of Saturn
1928 Mickey Mouse's screen debut (Steamboat Willie at Colony Theater NYC)
1934 Bruno Hauptmann arrested for kidnapping the Lindbergh baby
1940 Nazi decree forbids gentile women to work in Jewish homes
1945 Lord Haw Haw (William Joyce) sentenced to death in London
1956 1st Int'l. Conference of Black Writers & Artists meets (Sorbonne)
1957 1st underground nuclear explosion (near Las Vegas, NV)
1959 Nikita Krushchev is denied access to Disneyland
1970 Mary Tyler Moore premieres
1982 Streetcars stop running on San Francisco's Market St. after 122 years of service
1985 9,500 die in Mexico City earthquake (magnitude 6.9)

NOTES: M. "Chas." Bouffant attended the same high school (The Lakeside School for Boys) & college (Whitman College) as Adam West (though Mr. West, show-off that he is, graduated from both institutions, unlike The Editor here, who's never graduated from anything past eighth grade) and was born in the same city (San Francisco) as the sodomizer (!) Michael Cooper. (Not the Michael J. Cooper who used to play for the Lakers & coach the Sparks!)

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

From The Sidebar of Psycho-Sociopathology

"WHO SPEAKS FOR US?" ask decent, clean (& White) people in front of their ticky-tacky suburban box.
The National Policy Institute (a new addition to the mostly White Supremacist websites on the bogroll [sic] toward the bottom of the sidebar) claims to speak for them. They're also kind enough to link to a couple of websites that, to them, prove that White is Right, etc.:
Of Further Interest To White Americans
FBI Most Wanted
LAPD Most Wanted
Of course, were they to link to the U. S. Marshals 15 Most Wanted Fugitives List, as an example, the story might be a bit different. Although we suppose that would just be proof to them that White People are smart enough to break out of jail, or skip bail, or both. And by the way, the FBI link is to the Most Wanted in Criminal Enterprise Investigations (i.e., drug rings) not the Top Ten Most Wanted. Plenty of honkies there too.

If Just Another Blog™ didn't know we're all one sad pathetic species, and was ignorant enough to believe there was a real difference between breeding groups, we'd really be ashamed to be a "White Person."

USAF 60th Anniversary

The most chckenshit of the armed forces celebrates the deaths of hundreds of thousands, killed as if by a mafia chieftain, from a long distance, by cowardly fly-by shooters & bombers. Or, for a slightly less cynical message:
"Sixty years ago today the Air Force became an independent service. Three days before becoming the first secretary of the Air Force, W. Stuart Symington noted in an address to the Air Force Association, "No Air Force can be created by legislative action alone. All the National Security Act of 1947 has done is to give us the green light. It must be considered an opportunity and not an accomplishment." Since that time, courageous Airmen have pushed the limits of imagination and technology to fight and win the nation's wars.
It goes on @ the Official Website, which is celebrating like crazy. Why should Just Another Blog™ do anything else, we've already made our vicious (The truth always hurts, doesn't it, you candy-asses?) hateful remarks. Also, snappy pictures of planes @ Wikipedia.

Monday, September 17, 2007

Mr. Sulzberger, Tear Down This Wall!

The usual fine public service from Jurassic Pork @ Welcome to Pottersville, as he allows the unwashed masses access (on his dime, yet) to the most recent Paul Krugman (about Greenspan's new book) & Frank Rich (occupation, MoveOn.org, Congressional Democrats) columns, which are said to be worth a read. As long as they're free. ALERT: For some reason Mr. Pork's added a soundtrack to his site. If you're one of those "slackers" who reads this mess @ work, good for you, but be warned.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Alan Keyes' Earth Shattering Announcement

Scores, hundreds, maybe even a few thousand Christo-fascists have been on the edges of their seats for months now, & apparently the "entry" of Freddie Thompson into the horse's-ass race wasn't enough for them (he doesn't seem to darken the door of a church on a regular basis) but the tension has been released, as Alan Keyes has at last thrown his mitre into the ring. He made his announcement on something called Janet Parshall's America last Friday. Let's go to the transcript:
Alan Keyes is a statesman, and there's a marked and distinct difference between a statesman and a politician. He spent eleven years in the U.S. State Department, but he is also a man who has run for the office of the United States Senate a couple of times, and also for the office of President. But, in the meantime, he continues to help mold and shape the culture so we discern and learn the difference between right and wrong, and good and evil — and there is no ambiguity in which side Alan Keyes serves.
There is a certain ambiguity as to which state Alan Keyes would like to "serve," as he has run for the senate in both Maryland (twice, in 1988 & 1992) & in Illinois, where Barack Obama handed him his lunch while beating him like a rented mule in 2004. His previous presidential runs were in 1996 & 2000. Remember? Dr. Keyes is a veritable Harold Stassen. Indeed, he didn't try for the presidential brass ring until Stassen gave up after his 1992 effort.

How does Dr. K. feel about the occupation (It's not a war, damn it!) of Iraq?

KEYES: Well, I think that, in one immediate sense, we can't get away from the truth that we are in a battle for our survival, but I think what we need to recognize clearly is that the problem we face right now on Iraq is actually a problem of morale.

Our forces are over there doing the job they need to do — confronting terrorists, making sure that the terrorists deal with our armed forces rather than come over here and try to kill our unarmed people.
Yes, he's a Harvard graduate. And despite that, he believes that w/o our boys & girls, & middle-aged National Guard & Reservists, those "terrorists" will be swimming across the ocean to kill us. Because we're "unarmed."

PARSHALL: Uh-huh.

KEYES: And some people actually think that we can just withdraw and forget about it, forgetting that
we were attacked. And usually, when you withdraw from a war before your enemy stops fighting, you don't call that "withdrawal." You call it defeat and surrender.
And some people forget who attacked us. Hint: Those who attacked us weren't Iraqis.

That doctrine of terror is the utter opposite of the moral principle our country is based on, that our rights come from God, and must be exercised with respect for the authority of God — beginning with the right to life, which no one, for the sake of any agenda, has the right simply to disregard, where innocent lives are concerned.
Certainly none of the thousands upon thousands of Iraqis killed in or since "shock & awe" were innocent. Not even the children. After all, "they attacked us." Except that they didn't. And if you thought "Christo-fascist" was too strong, or inaccurate, read the the above selection & the following one carefully. Ambassador Keyes has abso-fugging-lutely no interest in the Constitution of the United States. No sir. He's all about the Declaration of Independence, because it refers to his imaginary man in the sky once or twice. Ask yourself if this doesn't represent Christo-fascism:
So, I think it's a moral problem. Do we really adhere to that principle, or not? And if we do, we will have the courage to defend it, and I think it's like a lot of other problems we face. As a matter of fact, just about every major challenge we deal with right now is turning on this question of the moral character, the sense of moral principles, the allegiance to our founding principle, which is the authority of God and the derivation of our rights from God, which is right there in the Declaration of Independence.

[...]

I'm sure, in your audience, there are a lot of people who have prayed for revival in America, for a return to the standards of the Declaration, our allegiance to God, our acknowledgment of His existence and authority. I think the mistake that a lot of folks have been making is thinking that somebody else is going to do this, and so we're putting together an effort that's not going to be like anything before, because it's going to be entirely based on citizen action.
Citizen action by duly-deputized Knights of Columbus beating the crap out of godless atheists & Planned Parenthood members is what he's thinking of.

We've wallowed in this pile just about long enough. We'll leave you w/ one more chunk from the big announcement:

PARSHALL: Yes. Alan, let me ask you. In a Keyes presidency, what would the top three issues from your White House be?

KEYES: Top three issues, I think, at the moment, are clear. We have got to restore our respect for Declaration principle by defending life, and making it clear that life begins at conception and must be respected, from that moment, as the will of the Creator, God, because that's what the Declaration establishes as our principle, and what the Constitution says we owe to our "posterity." That has to be clearly done, and clearly established.

Number two would be the restoration of our allegiance to and respect for God's authority, especially when it comes to clear moral decisions like marriage, where we need to restore the sense that the God-given family is an unalienable right. I wrote about this, in articles that I've done over the last several weeks, trying to restore a sense of what our principles really mean, when it come to decisions like this.

And finally, across the board, I would be trying to restore the moral character and morale and sense of our commitment to our basic moral values, starting in the area of national sovereignty, both in terms of our security from terrorism, and especially the security of our borders, and our assertion of the sovereignty of the American people, which our elites have been betraying and trying to throw away.

Certainly someone who went to Harvard, "served in the U.S. Foreign Service, was appointed Ambassador to the Economic and Social Council of the United Nations under President Ronald Reagan, and served as Assistant Secretary of State for International Organization Affairs from 1985 to 1987" (Wikipedia) couldn't be a member of any elite. Also from Wikipedia: "Keyes is a third degree Knight of Columbus and his family is devoutly Catholic."

Skin crawling yet? Try this on: "During his first year of graduate school, Keyes was William Kristol's roommate. (Kristol later ran Keyes' 1988 U.S. Senate campaign against Paul Sarbanes in Maryland.)" Guess that's how Bloody Bill got his job as one-term vice-president Dan Quayle's chief-of-staff, by racking up 38% of the votes.

OK, enough already. But we'll leave you w/ some links:

First, the ambassador's website, Renew America. Don't miss the ghoulish thrill of clicking to "hear Terri laughing" (yes, Terri Schiavo, who'd you think?) & be sure to read columnists like Marie Jon', Kaye Grogran, & Rudy Takala, although we suspect each & every person who types there is, like the three mentioned, highly amusing, & equally punctuation-, grammar-, & syntax-challenged.

The doctor's presidential website is America's Revival Alan Keyes for President.

And wander over to WorldNetDaily for a bit more on this, dare we say it, miraculous, candidacy, & many links, from that special WorldNetDaily perspective, on Ambassador Keyes, Ph. D. & his miraculous career.

Just Another Blog™ really has to get out of here. The stench of mackerel & the sound of beads being rattled is giving us a headache.

P. S.: If you didn't make it all the way through the Knights of Columbus Wikipedia entry, take a look @ their emblem, & read this: "Mounted on the shield is a fasces with an anchor and a short sword crossed behind it. The fasces is a symbol of authority while the anchor is the mariner's symbol for Columbus." Now who else used the fasces as a symbol of authority?

Alors! Il Nous Faut Peut-être Avoir une Guerre! Parte VII

May have to take down the Froggie flag on the sidebar. "What," you say? A pathetic Francophile like Just Another Blog™ changing allegiance in mid-stream? No, it's more like les petits bourgeoises de la France changing course. From the BBC (Mayhap we'll head in a more Anglophiliac direction.):

French foreign minister Bernard Kouchner says the world should prepare for war over Iran's nuclear programme.
And a video report from the Beeb.

Hmmm. Sarkozy. Kouchner. Not real French names, exactly.

Implication & Accusation

F-16I. Many more pictures & data @ Israeli Weapons.
As mentioned directly below, last Thursday, 6 September 2007, Israeli F-16Is bombed a "large underground" Syrian facility. Now "experts" & "sources," all of them anonymous, would like you to believe that what the F-16s targeted were "nuclear materials," possibly of North Korean origin. Of an Israeli, a Syrian & an American who went on the record, the American was the lowest ranking & most willing to imply & accuse, as reported in Rupert Murdoch's TimesOnline:
Andrew Semmel, a senior US State Department official, said Syria might have obtained nuclear equipment from “secret suppliers”, and added that there were a “number of foreign technicians” in the country.

Asked if they could be North Korean, he replied: “There are North Korean people there. There’s no question about that.” He said a network run by AQ Khan, the disgraced creator of Pakistan’s nuclear weapons, could be involved.
Note this paragraph from the NYT:
“If I were the Iranians, what I’d be freaked out about is that the other Arab states didn’t protest” the airstrike, said George Perkovich, vice president for studies at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. “The Arab world nonreaction is a signal to Iran, that Arabs aren’t happy with Iran’s power and influence, so if the Israelis want to go and intimidate and violate the airspace of another Arab state that’s an ally of Iran, the other Arab states aren’t going to do anything.”
Just Another Blog™ wishes to hell it could have some confidence in what the United States gov't. has to say about anything, let alone what it plans to do.

Lets Have a War, Pt. VI(ish)

Image from Barking Moonbat Early Warning System.
Veep Cheney's "Idiosyncratic Views" have been noticed before. Today the "liberal Eastern Establishment media," in the form of the New York Times & the Washington Post add fuel to the fire. From the NYT, further confirmation:
The language in Mr. Bush’s speech reflected an intense and continuing struggle between factions within his administration over how aggressively to confront Iran. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice has been arguing for a continuation of a diplomatic approach, while officials in Vice President Dick Cheney’s office have advocated a much tougher view. They seek to isolate and contain Iran, and to include greater consideration of a military strike.

[...]

But a belief has been growing in Iran, which administration officials have pointedly not tried to stem, that the Bush administration was considering military strikes against Iran. An Israeli airstrike in Syria last week kicked up speculation in the Iranian press that Israel, in alliance with the United States, was really trying to send a message to Iran that it could strike Iranian nuclear facilities if it chose to.

“If I were the Iranians, what I’d be freaked out about is that the other Arab states didn’t protest” the airstrike, said George Perkovich, vice president for studies at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. “The Arab world nonreaction is a signal to Iran, that Arabs aren’t happy with Iran’s power and influence, so if the Israelis want to go and intimidate and violate the airspace of another Arab state that’s an ally of Iran, the other Arab states aren’t going to do anything.”
And from the WaPo, former NATO supreme commander Wesley K. Clark lays out the same sad story of air & naval action:
Think another war can't happen? Think again. Unchastened by the Iraq fiasco, hawks in Vice President Cheney's office have been pushing the use of force. It isn't hard to foresee the range of military options that policymakers face.

The next war would begin with an intense air and naval campaign. Let's say you're planning the conflict as part of the staff of the Joint Chiefs. Your list of targets isn't that long -- only a few dozen nuclear sites -- but you can't risk retaliation from Tehran. So you allow 21 days for the bombardment, to be safe; you'd aim to strike every command-and-control facility, radar site, missile site, storage site, airfield, ship and base in Iran. To prevent world oil prices from soaring, you'd have to try to protect every oil and gas rig, and the big ports and load points. You'd need to use B-2s and lots of missiles up front, plus many small amphibious task forces to take out particularly tough targets along the coast, with manned and unmanned air reconnaissance. And don't forget the Special Forces, to penetrate deep inside Iran, call in airstrikes and drag the evidence of Tehran's nuclear ambitions out into the open for a world that's understandably skeptical of U.S. assertions that yet another Gulf rogue is on the brink of getting the bomb.

But if it's clear how a war with Iran would start, it's far less clear how it would end. How might Iran strike back? Would it unleash Hezbollah cells across Europe and the Middle East, or perhaps even inside the United States? Would Tehran goad Iraq's Shiites to rise up against their U.S. occupiers? And what would we do with Iran after the bombs stopped falling? We certainly could not occupy the nation with the limited ground forces we have left. So what would it be: Iran as a chastened, more tractable government? As a chaotic failed state? Or as a hardened and embittered foe?
It's worth reading all of ret'd. Gen. Clark's piece.

And former L. A. Times reporter Robin Wright (she got out just in time, it appears) now w/ the WaPo, steno graphs anonymously sourced gov't. information about those Iranians & their arming of everybody who looks cross-eyed at the U. S.:
This time, the arms were shipped into the western province of Farah, a vast but sparsely populated area, the sources said, indicating an attempt to find routes less likely to be discovered.

"They're clearly trying to vary their routes and not get caught," the U.S. official said on condition of anonymity because the interdiction has not been formally publicized.

A senior Iranian official called the allegation baseless. "We have no interest in instability in Iraq or Afghanistan. We have good neighborly relations with the heads of state, who have praised Iran recently. Why should we send weapons to the opposition?" the official said on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized by the Iranian government to comment on the allegation.

Iran, a predominantly Shiite Muslim country, has long opposed the Taliban, a Sunni Muslim group with different ideas about society, government and religion. But their cooperation is based on common opposition to foreign, and particularly Western, troops in Afghanistan, according to the United States and officials from other countries in the international force.
We've nothing to add. We are left speechless. And apprehensive.