Monday, December 1, 2008

Scab of a Nation, Driven Insane

America may not be eating its young any more (other than the several thousand dead in recent meaningless wars &, you know) but it's sho' nuff drivin' the kids nuts.
Counting substance abuse, the study found that nearly half of young people surveyed have some sort of psychiatric condition, including students and non-students. Personality disorders were the second most common problem behind drug or alcohol abuse as a single category. The disorders include obsessive, anti-social and paranoid behaviors that are not mere quirks but actually interfere with ordinary functioning.
That's right, our precious, holy, Gawd-inspired, free-market America has damaged close to 50% of its "future." We should be fair & note that anti-social & paranoid behavior is, as often as not, generously rewarded by This Great Nation of Ours™.

Squawking Heads

Also from Newsweek, three of their employees get the PBS rather than MSNBC visual treatment as they blather about the Obama/Clinton dynamic. Final word: No furrin leader will pay any attention to the former junior Sen. from N. Y. if she's perceived as not doing Pres. Obama's bidding/policies.

Waste Of Electrons

12 pp. (well, Internet pp.) from the Council On Foreign Relations (via Newsweek) for "an outline of the positions Clinton took on foreign policy issues during her presidential campaign and as senator" Might we inquire what any of this spin/crap/whatnot has to do w/ 
a) the real world 
b) what Ms. Clinton really thinks or would like to do 
c) what B. O.'s going to tell her to do? d) Council On Foreign Relations? Will we get be getting policy suggestions from the Illuminati in next wk.'s Newsweek?

Bush "Opens Up," Revealing More Nothing

The unaware, self-centered, unreflective G. W. Bush has been opening up now that he is the lamest duck ever, removing any lingering doubts as to what an absolute shit he is.
"I think I was unprepared for war," Bush said during the interview with ABC News, which was broadcast last night. "In other words, I didn't campaign and say: 'Please vote for me, I'll be able to handle an attack.' In other words, I didn't anticipate war. Presidents -- one of the things about the modern presidency is that the unexpected will happen."
Yet he did campaign as a "uniter, not a divider." And while he managed to unite 75% or so of the country against him, after six yrs. of hard work, that's not what he meant. Nor is "I didn't anticipate war." Here's documentary evidence that a "Post-Saddam Iraq" was the first thing on their list.Truly, this creature & his fellow ghouls must be punished, soundly, severely & soon.
One may subject oneself to the WaPo article here, or even look at the interview w/ Chuckles Gibson, which the ABC News ninnies have cut into tiny chunks. Both one's blood pressure & gag reflex should be taken into consideration before any unwise clicking.

Annals of Gov't. Incompetence

What is it w/ gov'ts. that makes them unable to deal w/ anything before it happens, & allows them to ignore warnings, no matter how clear & detailed? One thing we might remember is that the current Indian gummint is composed of Hindu nationalists. 
Let's review. Nationalism. Religion. A deadly combination often leading to fascism, & its handmaiden ideological purity. From there it's a hop & a skip to plain denseness. Case in point: The Bush Admin.

Bush Fiddled as Mortgages Melted Down

Below: The Gang of Four, President George W. Bush, center, is flanked by U.S. Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson, right, Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke, left. SEC Chairman Christopher Cox trails behind. Photo: Win McNamee/Getty Images file.
Blame it on the liberals & their forcing banks to loan to poor people. (Bush's "Ownership Society" talking point being as accurate a title as "Clean Skies" or "No Child Left Behind.") No, wait a minute...
The administration’s blind eye to the impending crisis is emblematic of a philosophy that trusted market forces and discounted the need for government intervention in the economy. Its belief ironically has ushered in the most massive government intervention since the 1930s.
Were we editing this it would read "discredited philosophy." Which is why we aren't editing anything but ourself, & that just barely.
Looks as if there was criminal negligence going on. There's no question there was plenty of greed,  sheer incompetence & economic foolishness. Where, then is the punishment for failure? Where is the corollary to "risk deserves reward?" 
We'd like to see most of these bastards on a nation-wide tour, on the back of a flat-bed truck, in the stocks. (If you can prove you really suffered, a rock or two may be provided as well.) Everyone in every hamlet & burg from Canada to Mexico & from Pacific to Atlantic should be given the chance to heave a few tomatoes at the executives & regulators responsible. And the costs of the entire tour should come from the pockets of the villains. Including all the costs of the rotting fruit. And if they get whacked in the head by a rock, the stitches come out of their wallets as well. Fuck 'em!!

Political Loyalty

We'll probably never tire of comparisons between B. O. & his predesscessor, whose name we dare not speak. More than enough change for us. 
Those presidents who fixated on personal allegiance, such as Lyndon Johnson, Richard Nixon, and George W. Bush, tended to perform far worse in office than those, such as Franklin Roosevelt, Harry Truman, John F. Kennedy, Ronald Reagan, and Bill Clinton, who could tolerate strong, independent actors on their teams. [...] The price was a surfeit of reliable hacks such as Alberto Gonzalez and outright incompetents such as Michael Brown ("Heckuvajob, Brownie"). My favorite illustration of the misguided notion of loyalty that ran rife through the Bush years was the testimony of White House Political Director Sara Taylor to the Senate committee investigating the firings of U.S. attorneys deemed insufficiently loyal. Declining to answer a question, Taylor said, "I took an oath to the president." "Did you mean, perhaps," Leahy asked, "that you took an oath to the Constitution
Snap!

Annals of Cognitive Dissonance

From Slate's "Today's Papers:"
The Los Angeles Times leads with a look at how there appears to be a consensus emerging among disparate interest groups on how the nation's healthcare system should be reformed. Although there are still many details to be worked out that could easily derail the process, there's a general agreement that the government needs to get involved in order to make sure that everyone is protected while preserving the employer-based insurance system.
Can anyone spot the problem in that last sentence? Anyone? Bueller?  The issue here is that the insurer-based health system is what "everyone" is trying to preserve. And that covering everyone while preserving insurance co. profits is not going to work. We are still screwed for the foreseeable future.

Annals of Self-Defense

Last wk.'s Nitwit of the Wk. Award goes to Plaxico Burress, who managed to plug himself in the thigh while trying to drink or something. You figure it out. 

Burress had been allowed to bypass security, even though they knew he was armed, according to a law enforcement official who spoke on condition of anonymity. The club is said to be fully cooperating in the investigation.

Around 12:05 a.m., as Burress was being escorted to a VIP area with a drink in one hand, he somehow ended up fumbling his gun and it discharged, hitting his thigh. Pierce was with him when that occurred, police said.

It's believed Pierce took Burress to the car and then left with him, according to police. The .40-caliber Glock was found in the glove compartment of Pierce's Cadillac Escalade, but it's unclear who put the weapon there.

If celebrity makes you a trouble magnet, get a freaking bodyguard who knows how to use a gun. Or just stay the hell out of places in which you feel you need a gun.

Communist Menace

Eleanor R. & Nikita K.
Gotta love the newshen, w/ her literal-minded questions.

Black Helos Here At Last

National Guardsmen standing guard at New York's Holland Tunnel.
Sure, we'd heard some people on the radio mumbling about the "First Brigade" being stationed somewhere in our own United Snakes, & that they were up to to no good, but not having received any printed, textual info about it, we didn't take it so seriously that we were walking around looking over our shoulder every ten seconds, expecting to see the red dot of a laser sight from an M-16 on our back. Now we are. Holy crap. They don't appear to be kidding.
Before the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, dedicating 20,000 troops to domestic response -- a nearly sevenfold increase in five years -- "would have been extraordinary to the point of unbelievable," Paul McHale, assistant defense secretary for homeland defense, said in remarks last month at the Center for Strategic and International Studies. But the realization that civilian authorities may be overwhelmed in a catastrophe prompted "a fundamental change in military culture," he said. The Pentagon's plan calls for three rapid-reaction forces to be ready for emergency response by September 2011. The first 4,700-person unit, built around an active-duty combat brigade based at Fort Stewart, Ga., was available as of Oct. 1, said Gen. Victor E. Renuart Jr., commander of the U.S. Northern Command.

Yet there is squawking from the other side of the aisle when President-elect Obama's proposal for some vague volunteer force thing or another is decried as an attempt to get the brown shirts back together.

Bush seems to have gotten his wish, he's officially turned America into a banana republic. This reporter was quite impressed w/ Madrid in 1970, when Generalissimo Franco was still alive. The number of uniformed people, & the variety of uniforms was out-done only by the number of soldiers, police officers & whatever who were armed w/ sub-machine guns & wandering the streets. "Never in America," we thought. We are proved wrong often.

G. O. P. & G-O-D

Two views of conservatism/Republicanism, one from self-styled "crunchy con" (Sounds awful, dunnit?) Rod (Tee hee!) Dreher, who thinks the conservative/Republican movement is composed of
Traditionalist conservatives [who] focused on questions of cultural and social health; libertarian conservatives [who] were more concerned about the economy and the overweening state. The two tribes sometimes fought bitterly, but they eventually reconciled and established what has been for nearly half a century a successful political partnership
& one from Neal Gabler, whose take is a little different.
The creation myth of modern conservatism usually begins with Barry Goldwater, the Arizona senator who was the party's presidential standard-bearer in 1964 and who, even though he lost in one of the biggest landslides in American electoral history, nevertheless wrested the party from its Eastern establishment wing. Then, Richard Nixon co-opted conservatism, talking like a conservative while governing like a moderate, and drawing the opprobrium of true believers. But Ronald Reagan embraced it wholeheartedly, becoming the patron saint of conservatism and making it the dominant ideology in the country. George W. Bush picked up Reagan's fallen standard and "conservatized" government even more thoroughly than Reagan had, cheering conservatives until his presidency came crashing down around him. That's how the story goes. But there is another rendition of the story of modern conservatism, one that doesn't begin with Goldwater and doesn't celebrate his libertarian orientation. It is a less heroic story, and one that may go a much longer way toward really explaining the Republican Party's past electoral fortunes and its future. In this tale, the real father of modern Republicanism is Sen. Joe McCarthy, and the line doesn't run from Goldwater to Reagan to George W. Bush; it runs from McCarthy to Nixon to Bush and possibly now to Sarah Palin. It centralizes what one might call the McCarthy gene, something deep in the DNA of the Republican Party that determines how Republicans run for office, and because it is genetic, it isn't likely to be expunged any time soon.
That would be the gene, as Gabler goes on to demonstrate, that allows Republican candidates to campaign on platforms of fear, resentment, jingoism & every other pathetic emotion to which the species is prey. Karl Rove is only the latest in a long line of dividers/polarizers, & so-called Reagan Democrats are really Nixon Democrats.

Now Just A Damn Minute Here

A rebuttal of sorts to the demand for an apology for Democratic Party racism by the National Black Republicans Association, from a (Ta da!) black Republican.
With those words Reeves expressed what many of us have felt over the years — and felt again during the recent campaign as we listened to racially coded Republican ads and speeches aimed at scaring working-class and rural white voters about Obama. Reeves expressed why so many of us, including me, ended up, after struggling with our consciences, supporting and voting for the Illinois senator. After losing our votes this time around, the question is whether the GOP will learn from its failings or continue to compound them. Rumor and e-mail has it that some black conservatives are angry with black Republicans such as Gen. Colin Powell who publicly backed Obama and have issued calls to “throw out” those who did so. But instead of doling out retribution, the party would be better off reflecting on its failings vis-a-vis African Americans, and on the transformation of Abraham Lincoln’s Grand Old Party from one that freed the slaves, stood with the suffragists in the early 20th century and helped pass both the Civil Rights and Voting Rights Acts when Southern Democrats would not yield to a party that now appeals to the old Confederacy and a few mountain states out West.
What do you say to that, NBRA?

B. O., M. O. & The Kids

Pictures of the world's first celebrity president & family giving out plastic bags at a food bank in Chicago. Is this just an indication of the hand-outs to come? We sure hope so.

Random Thoughts

Today is the first day of the last mo. of the yr....Can we make it until January?...Will America survive for another mo.?...Where did we leave our glasses...Just one more, & we'll be able to refer to the depression of 2008-09.

Billy Paul Is 74?

Today is Monday, Dec. 1, the 336th day of 2008. There are 30 days left in the year. Today's Highlight in History: On Dec. 1, 1955, Rosa Parks, a black seamstress, refused to give up her seat to a white man on a Montgomery, Ala., city bus. Mrs. Parks was arrested, sparking a yearlong boycott of the buses by blacks. On this date: In 1824, the presidential election was turned over to the U.S. House of Representatives when a deadlock developed between John Quincy Adams, Andrew Jackson, William H. Crawford and Henry Clay. (Adams ended up the winner.) In 1904, the Louisiana Purchase Exposition in St. Louis closed after seven months and some 20 million visitors. In 1913, the first drive-in automobile service station, built by Gulf Refining Company opened in Pittsburgh In 1921, the Navy flew the first nonrigid dirigible to use helium; the C-7 traveled from Hampton Roads, Va., to Washington, D.C. In 1943, President Franklin D. Roosevelt, British Prime Minister Winston Churchill and Soviet leader Josef Stalin concluded their Tehran conference. In 1958, the Rodgers and Hammerstein musical "Flower Drum Song" opened on Broadway. In 1969, the U.S. government held its first draft lottery since World War II. In 1973, David Ben-Gurion, Israel's first prime minister, died in Tel Aviv at age 87. In 1992, in Mineola, N.Y., Amy Fisher was sentenced to 5 to 15 years in prison for shooting and seriously wounding Mary Jo Buttafuoco. (Fisher served seven years.) In 2000, Vicente Fox was sworn in as president of Mexico, ending 71 years of ruling-party domination. Ten years ago: Exxon agreed to buy Mobil for $73.7 billion. Cuba's Communist Party recommended that Dec. 25 be re-established as a permanent holiday. Five years ago: India and Pakistan agreed to restore airline overflight and landing rights by Jan. 1, 2004. Boeing Co. chairman and chief executive Phil Condit resigned unexpectedly. U.S. Rep. Bill Janklow went on trial in Flandreau, S.D., charged with manslaughter in the death of a motorcyclist who'd collided with his automobile. (Janklow was convicted and served 100 days in jail.) One year ago: Police in Wichita, Kan., identified a body found days earlier as that of Emily Sander, a missing college student whose disappearance drew nationwide attention after the discovery she was also an Internet pornography model named Zoey Zane. (A suspect, Israel Mireles, is fighting extradition from Mexico.) Four suspects were charged in Miami in the shooting death of Washington Redskins star Sean Taylor. (One ended up pleading guilty to second-degree murder; a fifth suspect was also charged.) Today's Birthdays: Actor Paul Picerni is 86. Former CIA director Stansfield Turner is 85. Singer Billy Paul is 74. Actor-director Woody Allen is 73. Golfer Lee Trevino is 69. Singer Dianne Lennon (The Lennon Sisters) is 69. Country musician Casey Van Beek (The Tractors) is 66. Television producer David Salzman is 65. Rock singer-musician Eric Bloom (Blue Oyster Cult) is 64. Rock musician John Densmore (The Doors) is 64. Actress-singer Bette Midler is 63. Singer Gilbert O'Sullivan is 62. Actor Treat Williams is 57. Country singer Kim Richey is 52. Actress Charlene Tilton is 50. Actress-model Carol Alt is 48. Actor Jeremy Northam is 47. Actor Nestor Carbonell is 41. Actress Golden Brooks is 38. Actress-comedian Sarah Silverman is 38.Thought for Today: "Life begins when a person first realizes how soon it will end." -- Marcelene Cox, American writer.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Finally!

It's the "conservative alternative" to AARP. 

War Profiteering

Ret'd. Gen. & still practicing douchebag Barry McCaffrey has always rubbed the entire editorial staff here the wrong way, doubtlessly stemming from his service as "drug czar" in Clinton's cabinet, and now The New York Times has run a long article on how B. M. has backed his truck up to the mint & is shoveling it right in. You guessed it: "Consulting."
The consulting company he started after leaving the government in 2001, BR McCaffrey Associates, promises to “build linkages” between government officials and contractors like Defense Solutions for up to $10,000 a month. He has also earned at least $500,000 from his work for Veritas Capital, a private equity firm in New York that has grown into a defense industry powerhouse by buying contractors whose profits soared from the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. In addition, he is the chairman of HNTB Federal Services, an engineering and construction management company that often competes for national security contracts.
Nice work if you can get it.
On NBC and in other public forums, General McCaffrey has consistently advocated wartime policies and spending priorities that are in line with his corporate interests. But those interests are not described to NBC’s viewers. He is held out as a dispassionate expert, not someone who helps companies win contracts related to the wars he discusses on television.
We always assumed he was full of shit. Thanks to the Liberal Bible for giving us reason for our assumption. Now we're going to scan the rest of the piece.

Surf's Up, Ho-Dads!

/O.CON.KLOX.CF.S.0010.000000T0000Z-081202T0000Z/
VENTURA COUNTY COAST-
LOS ANGELES COUNTY COAST INCLUDING DOWNTOWN LOS ANGELES-
519 PM PST SUN NOV 30 2008

...HIGHER THAN NORMAL SURF CONDITIONS THROUGH MONDAY AFTERNOON...

HIGHER THAN NORMAL SURF CONDITIONS ARE EXPECTED TO PERSIST ACROSS WEST FACING BEACHES OF LOS ANGELES AND VENTURA COUNTIES...THEN BEGIN TO DIMINISH MONDAY NIGHT. BREAKERS OF 3 TO 5 FEET WILL BE COMMON ACROSS WEST FACING BEACHES...WITH OCCASIONAL SETS TO 7 FEET LIKELY...ESPECIALLY IN VENTURA COUNTY.

It Happened Today

Today in History - Nov. 30 By The Associated Press Sunday, November 30, 2008; 12:01 AM -- Today is Sunday, Nov. 30, the 335th day of 2008. There are 31 days left in the year. Today's Highlight in History: On Nov. 30, 1782, the United States and Britain signed preliminary peace articles in Paris, ending the Revolutionary War. On this date: In 1803, Spain completed the process of ceding Louisiana to France, which had sold it to the United States. In 1835, Samuel Langhorne Clemens -- better known as Mark Twain -- was born in Florida, Mo. In 1874, British statesman Sir Winston Churchill was born at Blenheim Palace. In 1900, Irish writer Oscar Wilde died in Paris at age 46. In 1936, London's famed Crystal Palace, constructed for the Great Exhibition of 1851, was destroyed in a fire. In 1939, the Russo-Finnish War began as Soviet troops invaded Finland. In 1962, U Thant of Burma, who had been acting secretary-general of the United Nations following the death of Dag Hammarskjold the year before, was elected to a four-year term. In 1966, the former British colony of Barbados became independent. In 1981, the United States and the Soviet Union opened negotiations in Geneva aimed at reducing nuclear weapons in Europe. In 1988, Kohlberg Kravis Roberts and Co. was declared the winner of the corporate free-for-all to take over RJR Nabisco Inc. with a bid of $24.53 billion. Ten years ago: Quebec's separatist premier, Lucien Bouchard, was returned to power, but with only 43 percent of the vote, setting back the Parti Quebecois' goal of seeking independence from Canada. Deutsche Bank AG officially announced it was acquiring Bankers Trust Corp. for more than $10 billion. Five years ago: U.S. soldiers in Iraq fought back coordinated attacks throughout the northern city of Samarra. Two South Korean contractors were killed in a roadside ambush. Nathaniel Jones, a black man, died during a fight with Cincinnati police in a case that heightened racial tensions. Walt Disney Co. vice chairman Roy E. Disney stepped down from the board of directors. Mark Philippoussis gave Australia its 28th Davis Cup title, beating Spain's Juan Carlos Ferrero 7-5, 6-3, 1-6, 2-6, 6-0. Former U.S. congressman and World Bank chairman Barber B. Conable Jr. died in Sarasota, Fla., at age 81. Gertrude Ederle, the first woman to swim the English Channel, died in Wyckoff, N.J., at age 98. One year ago: A man took hostages at a Hillary Clinton campaign office in Rochester, N.H.; Leeland Eisenberg surrendered about five hours later. An Atlasjet plane crashed in southwest Turkey, killing all 57 people on board. An Amtrak train and a freight train collided on a track on the South Side of Chicago, injuring dozens of people. Motorcycle daredevil Evel Knievel died in Clearwater, Fla., at age 69. Today's Birthdays: Actor Efrem Zimbalist Jr. is 91. Actor Robert Guillaume is 81. TV personality and producer Dick Clark is 79. Radio talk show host G. Gordon Liddy is 78. Country singer-recording executive Jimmy Bowen is 71. Movie director Ridley Scott is 71. Singer Rob Grill (The Grassroots) is 65. Movie writer-director Terrence Malick is 65. Rock musician Roger Glover (Deep Purple) is 63. Playwright David Mamet is 61. Actress Margaret Whitton is 58. Actor Mandy Patinkin is 56. Musician Shuggie Otis is 55. Country singer Jeannie Kendall is 54. Singer Billy Idol is 53. Education Secretary Margaret Spellings is 51. Rock musician John Ashton (The Psychedelic Furs) is 51. Comedian Colin Mochrie is 51. Former football and baseball player Bo Jackson is 46. Rapper Jalil (Whodini) is 45. Actor-director Ben Stiller is 43. Rock musician Mike Stone is 39. Actress Sandra Oh is 38.Thought for Today: "A man cannot be too careful in the choice of his enemies." -- Oscar Wilde (1854-1900).

P. S. A.

I'm a Tail Dragger

Two Days & Five Hundred Miles

A classic of the craft of re-writing a press release. We really just want you to see the picture, taken, we assume, recently.
The Tubes: David Medd, Prairie Prince, Fee Waybill, Roger Steen and Rick Anderson.
Missed 'em by that much:
Where: Harrah’s Lake Tahoe When: 7:30 p.m. Friday, Nov. 28 Tickets: $25

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Noun, Verb, "9/11"

From Dhimmi Watch:
a strategy that has prevented any repeat of the 9/11 terrorist attack....
From the previously mentioned Dr. Benkin:
US anti-terrorist actions have prevented any attacks on its soil since September 11th, and they are wrapping up their successful mission in Iraq. But the unity of resolve that characterized the United States in the days following 9/11 is a distant memory. The US President who launched the war on Islamist extremism, George W. Bush, will be leaving office in a matter of weeks; and his administration has been engaged in trying to pressure Israel into rewarding the Islamists. Moreover, Americans have just elected a President, Barack Obama, whose policy is to negotiate with those nation-states that sponsor Islamist terror.
One could get the impression that these brave keyboardists, who, rabid as they are, doubtless have some insight & knowledge of what's up in the radical jihadist Islamic fundamental Islamist terrorist community, may know that something is up, & hope that it happens as soon as Obama assumes office, validating the "W. kept us safe for seven yrs." idea, as well as B. O. "palling around w/ terrorists."

War Not Going Well

A "noted expert on South Asia" calls for "a sustained military and intelligence effort to destroy any of the millions of Indian Muslims who are part of or support Islamist extremists." Really. Because we need "to energize the lagging international fight against the international scourge of Islamist terrorism."

You can read more of the rabid "Dr." Benkin's essay at International Analyst Network.

Who's In Charge Here?

From June (We were busy that month trying to survive on $221.00/mo. cash & $168.00/mo. in food stamps. Pardon us for not getting it to you any sooner.): World leaders not very popular. When we saw the headline ("Is Gordon Brown the Leader of the Free World?") we suspected it had to do w/ the current American power gap. (Maybe we need a flexible inauguration date; as soon as the incoming prez is ready to rock, he should tell the outgoing bastard to step aside ASAP.) Turns out that's not it, but it's still interesting.
It's shocking that some of the world's most trusted leaders are autocrats. Has a gap emerged between democracy and global leadership? I was surprised at the low level of confidence around the world. With the decline of the U.S. President as a global leader for an extended period, you would think that some other leader would step into that breach and become a galvanizing focus as an alternative.
Goes on but never answers the question: What about that gap between democracy & global leadership? When one hears so-called leaders blathering empty praises of liberty, democracy & all the other lip-serviced & otherwise ignored concepts, one can only laugh, realizing that the vast majority of the human species want only full stomachs & something to distract them at night, in the few hours they can, if they're lucky, call their own.  It's no surprise that autocrats are better tolerated.

In Which We Tell The Truth, & Let The Chips Fall Where They May

Alright, we'll admit it. (It's not that hard to tell.) We like terrorism. We're all for it, because it's in line w/ our staunch support of anarchy & nihilism. And juvenile rebelliousness. And chaotic activity in general. We're also in favor of decentralized gov't. As were the Mumbai attackers.
When the terrorists say on their websites that they seek to break up India and reclaim it for Islam, they speak a language many Hindu Indians understand. And India has proved to be the softest of soft targets.
We favor the elimination of all colonial constructs (like India) as well.
This is why all Indians — Muslims and Hindu alike — know that the deepening divide threatens the country’s existence. Many years ago, a divide like this re-energised the Hindu nationalist BJP. Today who knows who it might throw up? The hour of men like Narendra Modi, who oversaw a pogrom of Indian Muslims in Gujarat in 2002, might have come at last.
Alright, pogrom time! What next, as India crawls back to the past from the future it threatened to have?

Pardon Us

We mentioned earlier the pardons Bush has made so far in his last gasps in office. The WSJ did some research & found other commonalities. 
But a closer look at some of the newly pardoned shows many of them are church-going, blue-collar workers from rural areas (and ardent Bush supporters) who had little trouble finding jobs after their convictions. There is another common thread: the important role firearms once played in their lives.
[...] Robert Mohon Jr. of Grant, Ala., who pleaded guilty to conspiracy to distribute marijuana and served a year in prison in the late 1980s, wrote in his petition that he was concerned about his heritage. He wanted to pass down his father's hunting rifles to his grandchildren and teach them "the enjoyment of the outdoors." His felony record was standing in the way. "That's what's wrong with the world today -- nobody knows how to handle guns," says the 61-year-old retiree.

Yeah, that's the only problem in the world, people don't know how to handle guns. This guy is loose among us now?

At Half-Time

University of Spoiled Children:  24
University of Our Lady of Indiana: 0

FTA, TN, TAF & TM

Why we hate soldiers, sailors, airpeople & Marines, & don't support the troops.
1. They aren't "patriots," they're just "real" Americans: too stupid or poorly educated to get real jobs. Economy down, recruiting up.
The economic downturn and rising unemployment rate are making the military a more attractive option, Pentagon officials say. In some cases, the peace of mind that comes with good benefits and a regular paycheck is overcoming concerns about the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, which any new enlistee is likely to join. [...] Good news for the Army has coincided with terrible news elsewhere. The unemployment rate has jumped from 4.8 to 6.5 percent in the past 12 months, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. During that time, the ranks of the unemployed grew by 2.8 million, to 10.1 million.
2. If these no-future saps stopped enlisting, U. S. leaders would have to stop bullying the world. Or they'd have to re-institute the draft to continue the bullying, which might awaken the moral fiber of people w/ futures who might then stand up & resist. That mistake has already been made, & is one of the (few) gov't. mistakes they won't make twice.
(There's nothing in the WaPo bit that covers this ground. We can't imagine why.)
3. Patriotism, nationalism & that sort of vulgarity. Last refuge of scoundrels, pindicks, failed high school jocks & the "still trying to show mother something" demographic. There may be an evolutionary imperative making them join up to kill each other, saving society the trouble of incarcerating them & leaving the world to decent, rational people. (Cowards, as we're known.)

But no matter what sorts of benefits recruiters offer, or how slick the ad campaign, one of the main draws continues to be service to country, said Sgt. 1st Class Thad Copeland, an Army recruiter based in Alexandria. Even if someone is joining because he can't find a job elsewhere, he needs to know that decision could mean a trip to the front lines.

"I know what your first question is, and the answer is yes," Copeland tells his prospects. "You are getting deployed."

4. Bonus Glibertarian argument: What's the return in signing up to "defend" (i. e., you'll be totally mis-used, at the potential cost of your life, or an extremity, eye, limb or large hunk of brain, by the kind of megalomaniacal idiot who runs for & gets hold of the presidency, but is still afraid of "looking weak") a nation that will neither educate you nor offer you an honest chance at a decent job. A nation whose leaders say "We can't make the veterans benefits too good, or people will leave the service." We don't care if national defense is the only legitimate function of national gov't., they owe you a living wage until you die, one way or the other, if you sign up for that crap.

Bad Day for Celebrity

Today in History - Nov. 29

By The Associated Press
The Associated Press  Saturday, November 29, 2008; 12:01 AM

-- Today is Saturday, Nov. 29, the 334th day of 2008. There are 32 days left in the year.

Today's Highlight in History:

On Nov. 29, 1963, President Johnson named a commission headed by Earl Warren to investigate the assassination of President Kennedy.

On this date:

In 1530, Cardinal Thomas Wolsey, onetime adviser to England's King Henry VIII, died.

In 1864, a Colorado militia killed at least 150 peaceful Cheyenne Indians in the Sand Creek Massacre.

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In 1908, New York Congressman Adam Clayton Powell Jr. was born in New Haven, Conn.

In 1924, Italian composer Giacomo Puccini died in Brussels, Belgium, before he could complete his opera "Turandot." (It was finished by Franco Alfano.)

In 1947, the U.N. General Assembly passed a resolution calling for the partitioning of Palestine between Arabs and Jews.

In 1961, Enos the chimp was launched from Cape Canaveral, Fla., aboard the Mercury-Atlas 5 spacecraft, which orbited earth twice before returning.

In 1967, Secretary of Defense Robert S. McNamara announced he was leaving the Johnson administration to become president of the World Bank.

In 1981, actress Natalie Wood drowned in a boating accident off Santa Catalina Island, Calif., at age 43.

In 1986, actor Cary Grant died in Davenport, Iowa, at age 82.

In 2001, George Harrison, the "quiet Beatle," died in Los Angeles following a battle with cancer; he was 58.

Ten years ago: Swiss voters overwhelmingly rejected legalizing heroin and other narcotics.

Five years ago: Gunmen in Iraq ambushed and killed two Japanese diplomats; seven members of Spain's military intelligence agency were killed in Mahmudiyah. Thirty-three people were killed in the crash of a military plane in Congo.

One year ago: A court in Sudan convicted British teacher Gillian Gibbons of insulting Islam for letting her students name a teddy bear "Muhammad" and sentenced her to 15 days in prison. (Gibbons was pardoned after spending more than a week in custody; she then left the country.) Pakistan's president, Pervez Musharraf, embarked on a new, five-year term as a civilian president, a day after ceding the powerful post of army chief. Former Illinois Congressman Henry Hyde died in Chicago at age 83. Former General Motors chief executive Roger B. Smith died in Detroit at age 82.

Today's Birthdays: Hall-of-Fame sportscaster Vin Scully is 81. Blues singer-musician John Mayall is 75. Actress Diane Ladd is 73. Composer-musician Chuck Mangione is 68. Country singer Jody Miller is 67. Pop singer-musician Felix Cavaliere (The Rascals) is 64. Olympic skier Suzy Chaffee is 62. Comedian Garry Shandling is 59. Actor Jeff Fahey is 56. Movie director Joel Coen is 54. Actor-comedian-game show host Howie Mandel is 53. Actress Cathy Moriarty is 48. Actress Kim Delaney is 47. Actor Tom Sizemore is 47. Actor Andrew McCarthy is 46. Actor Don Cheadle is 44. Actor-producer Neill Barry is 43. Musician Wallis Buchanan (Jamiroquai) is 43. Pop singer Jonathan Knight (New Kids on the Block) is 40. Rock musician Martin Carr (Boo Radleys) is 40. Actor Larry Joe Campbell is 38. Rock musician Frank Delgado (Deftones) is 38. Actress Gena Lee Nolin is 37. Actor Brian Baumgartner is 36. Actress Anna Faris is 32. Actor Julian Ovenden is 32. Rapper The Game is 29. Rock musician Ringo Garza is 27. Actor Lucas Black is 26.

Thought for Today: "Facts are stubborn things, but statistics are more pliable." -- Mark Twain (1835-1910).

Now Really, This Is Ridiculous

And the inspiration:

WTH? (UPDATED)

A glance (more or less in desperation) at the sucky Google News Feed way down on the sidebar revealed the names of some people we'd more or less forgotten: Recent but now former presidential candidates. We may just look at Romney next, but ol' Huckabee Hound is always sniffin' at it, & sometimes he even steps in it. On The View, yet.
"It's a different set of rights. People who are homosexuals should have every right in terms of their civil rights, to be employed, to do anything they want. But that's not really the issue. I know you talked about it and I think you got into it a little bit early on. But when we're talking about a redefinition of an institution, that's different than individual civil rights. We're never going to convince each other," Huckabee told Behar.

Behar reminded Huckabee that segregation was an institution, too, in a way.

"But here is the difference, said Huckabee, "Bull Connor was hosing people down in the streets of Alabama. John Lewis got his skull cracked on the Selma bridge."

OK. At a book signing Friday at the Borders in Panama City Beach, Fla., Huck said a pile of silly crap too.

"The main focus of the book is that America can be a great nation again and the Republican Party can be relevant, but it has to get back to its clear convictions," he told the crowd at the Pier Park Borders. "When we've left them we've lost our way and we've lost elections."

Huckabee said Republicans win elections when the party is true to ideals like the sanctity of life and traditional marriage.

"When we get squishy on that stuff, we lose, it's as simple as that," he said.

Huckabee also blamed the recent Wall Street bailout for the Republicans' poor showing in the November general election and expressed concern that the new administration might seek to revive the Carter-era Fairness Docterine [sic], which he called "not only unconstitutional, but unconscionable."

How much longer they can continue to delude themselves like that is any one's guess, but if they keep it up there may well be three or even four semi-major parties available for this yr.'s Republican runners-up to lead over a cliff.

There'll probably be a few hard-liners & die-hards left to leap off that cliff, if these responses are anything more than anecdotal happenstance.

Deborah Tainsh said they came because they feel Huckabee "truly understands the depth of the War on Terror and how important it is."
UPDATED (@ approx. 0420 29 November 2008) Friday was busy for the formerly heavy-set Huckabee. He arrived in Tampa at 0900 (more specifically, Inkwood Books in Hyde Park) having already worked a crowd in Sarasota. In Tampa, a Hucklebee supporter spoke to a reporter:
Kathy Sorensen came from Treasure Island to catch a glimpse of the man she says would make a terrific president — someday. "It's not that he's a man of God, because I'm a Christian," Sorensen said. "It's that he has ideas like the FairTax. It is more fair. Poor people wouldn't be buying iPods if we had a FairTax."
Now just a moment? Is she saying that the "Fair Tax" is deliberately regressive, just to keep poor people from buying iPods? Should this be brought to the attention of Megan McArdle, of the prestigious & ancient Atlantic? And two more nice Republican ladies speak to the press.

"This is bigger than the presidency," said Kathy Cox of St. Petersburg. "This is about him getting a message out that integrity matters. I like his values. I'm Christian; he's a Christian."

Cox's sister, Nancy Main, was visiting for Thanksgiving from North Carolina. She likes Huckabee, too, and said he could play the same role Pat Robertson has played for years as the proxy for religious conservatives. "He's someone the rural parts of America can relate to," Main said.

Yup. And also, you betcha. (Is Pat Robertson dead or something?)

Economic Truth Sort of Mentioned on MSNBC

Really, almost.

Friday, November 28, 2008

Less Than Four Yrs. Until The 2012 Election!

Look at that paw go!
While doing a bit of self-research , we came across something that should serve as a warning for 2012: The Assemblies of God are a Pentecostal church. That means that this stuff, & the preacher-who-drives-out-witches, & a certain Sarah Palin all believe these fairy tales, or profess to believe them, in which case they're hypocrites. Not that we want to start the 2012 campaign now. We do want to get these Palin-related images off the hard drive. And we dug this up: as well as this:& this sums up the entire cluster-fuck.Be w/ us next wk., when we'll be discussing who's in & who's out in 2016.

He's Making A List, He's Checking It Twice

The eight-yr. old alleged to have plugged his father & the boarder may not be an angel, exactly. His grandmother seems to have dropped a dime or two on him.

"I knew this would happen," she said. "They were too hard on (the boy). I knew (the boy) did it. He spent the night in my bed cuddling up to me. I had a feeling he did it. If any 8-year-old boy is capable of doing this, it's (the boy)."

(The boy) does seem like a resentful little bastard. 

In a police interview released last week, the boy said he had been spanked five times the night before the shootings because he did not bring home some papers from school. The boy told a state Child Protective Services worker that his 1,000th spanking would be his last, according to the documents released Wednesday.

In an affidavit for a search warrant, Sgt. Lucas Rodriguez writes that the boy tallied the spankings on a piece of paper.

Previous reports stating that the late father wanted to give Junior a gun so he wouldn't be afraid of them might indicate that the youngster was a budding sissy, but we guess he showed them!

Since Long Before Jeezis

We don't do much typing about Reefer Madness here (& not everything done in the past should be done today) but here's a Canadian item about the oldest stash so far discovered.

OTTAWA – Researchers say they have located the world's oldest stash of marijuana, in a tomb in a remote part of China.

The cache of cannabis is about 2,700 years old and was clearly "cultivated for psychoactive purposes," rather than as fibre for clothing or as food, says a research paper in the Journal of Experimental Botany.

[...]

"To our knowledge, these investigations provide the oldest documentation of cannabis as a pharmacologically active agent," says the newly published paper, whose lead author was American neurologist Dr. Ethan B. Russo.

Remnants of cannabis have been found in ancient Egypt and other sites, and the substance has been referred to by authors such as the Greek historian Herodotus. But the tomb stash is the oldest so far that could be thoroughly tested for its properties.

And from the "I did not know that" Dep't.:
The region of China where the tomb is located, Xinjiang, is considered an original source of many cannabis strains worldwide.

Blackest Friday

Apparently the word that the economy is in the pits & that consumption is over & done w/ has not yet reached the lower-middle-class AmeriKKKan, as evidenced by the mess at a Wal*Mart store in Valley Stream, Long Island, where the stampede of shoppers allegedly took the doors of the store off their hinges. (Don't really appear to be "hinges" on the doors pictured. And they seem to be attached to their frames.)And, the unthinking mob trampled a security guard to death in their lust to enter the temple of commodity fetishism. Sadly for the would-be shoppers, they were forced to leave the store w/o purchases. This is tragedy & beyond further comment, but a commenter in the Daily News does have a special, Christmassy, message: Teachem Nov 28, 2008 4:37:23 PM Report Offensive Post Da Bruthas n' Sistas gone wild. See, if B.Hussein hadn't won the election, this would not have happened. The celebration is over, get over it, get a better job, work longer hours, stop being lazy, and shop on an off day. Pay a couple of bucks extra you wanton welfare creatures, and stop living off of treats-treats-treats! Truly, this is a great nation! "Get a better job, work longer hours..." is sound advice in an economy shedding jobs like any baldness metaphor insultingly applied to a Republican. It's all up to you, brothers & sisters! Make the choice to work hard & the world is your oyster.

Retail Scrum Underway, Recession or Not

After her granddaughter settled on which kind of wheels she wanted for Christmas, Patricia Griffith of DeQuincy, La., left her home at midnight for the Lake Charles, La., K-Mart to ensure a place at the head of the line. "I'm after some stuff for my 3-year-old grandbaby," said Griffith. She noted, "We're going to get two TVs that are on sale." She added, "I'm spending more because my grandbaby gets whatever she wants. She's the only one I have, and my daughter can't have no more, so we buy whatever she wants."
Her granddaughter wants two tee vees? Are we not reading that right? 

Annals of Advertising

Edgy, dude.

News of the Communist Party of China

• Vice president calls for practicality in rural development  • Vice premier stresses people's housing, health care • President Hu reiterates China's reform, opening-up • Hu Jintao visits county to promote ideological campaign • Party leaders guage implementation of Scientific Outlook on Development  • Senior official of Mauritius ruling party meets Chinese Communist Party delegation • Senior CPC official talks with cabbies after massive work stoppage

Sino-SovietRussian Joint Anti-Terror Exercise

Chinese soldiers in the second phase of the anti-terror drill "Peace Mission 2007" in the Chebarkul range near Chelyabinsk of Russia, 13 August 2007.
Many things may be done in the name of "anti-terrorism." Including the ChiCom equivalent of the Consumer Products Safety Commission, seen above hooking up w/ Russian troops to practice anti-terrorism.

One if by Land, Two if by Sea

In the grand tradition of pirates, freebooters, Vikings, looters, raiders, raptors, Norsemen, pillagers & plunderers since time immemorial, it appears the religious right terrorist attacks in Mumbai were an amphibious operation.

"We also found a dead body in the vessel," Commandant Kulpreet Yadav told Reuters. "We took the boat under tow and handed it over to the police for investigation."

Indian investigators say the militants who attacked Mumbai, killing around 120 people, arrived by sea in rubber dinghies, but are trying to trace the ship which ferried them close to the city.

[...]

Newspapers say three of the militants arrested have confessed to being Pakistani members of the Lashkar-e-Taiba group. The NDTV news channel, citing unnamed sources, said the Indian-owned trawler had been hijacked in Pakistani waters 14 days ago.

Anyone interested in a pool on the use of nukes by India or Pakistan?

Cynical Cartoon

On This Date: Do Not Fly Airlines Based South of the Equator

Today in History - Nov. 28
By The Associated Press
The Associated Press  Friday, November 28, 2008; 12:02 AM

-- Today is Friday, Nov. 28, the 333rd day of 2008. There are 33 days left in the year.

Today's Highlight in History:

On Nov. 28, 1942, nearly 500 people died in a fire that destroyed the Cocoanut Grove nightclub in Boston.

On this date:

In 1520, Portuguese navigator Ferdinand Magellan reached the Pacific Ocean after passing through the South American strait that now bears his name.

In 1907, future movie producer Louis B. Mayer opened his first movie theater, in Haverhill, Mass.

In 1919, American-born Lady Astor was elected the first female member of the British Parliament.

In 1943, President Roosevelt, British Prime Minister Winston Churchill and Soviet leader Josef Stalin began conferring in Tehran during World War II.

In 1958, Chad, Gabon and Middle Congo became autonomous republics within the French community.

In 1964, the United States launched the space probe Mariner 4 on a course to Mars.

In 1979, an Air New Zealand DC-10 en route to the South Pole crashed into a mountain in Antarctica, killing all 257 people aboard.

In 1987, a South African Airways Boeing 747 crashed into the Indian Ocean with the loss of all 159 people aboard.

In 1990, Margaret Thatcher resigned as British prime minister during an audience with Queen Elizabeth II, who conferred the premiership on John Major.

In 2001, Enron Corp. collapsed after would-be rescuer Dynegy Inc. backed out of an $8.4 billion deal to take it over.

Ten years ago: Some Republicans expressed disappointment and outrage over President Clinton's written responses to 81 questions from the House Judiciary Committee concerning the Monica Lewinsky affair, with one accusing the president of "word games."

Five years ago: President Bush returned to his ranch in Crawford, Texas, after a secret, nearly 36-hour journey that took him to Iraq for a Thanksgiving visit with U.S. troops.

One year ago: A day after an international Mideast peace conference in Annapolis, Md., President Bush told the leaders of Israel and the Palestinian territories he was personally committed to their mission of peace. Republican presidential rivals Rudy Giuliani and Mitt Romney clashed over immigration in a provocative, no-holds-barred CNN/YouTube debate. O.J. Simpson pleaded not guilty in Las Vegas to charges of kidnapping and armed robbery stemming from a confrontation with sports memorabilia dealers. (Simpson and a co-defendant were convicted last month.) Broadway stagehands and theater producers reached a tentative agreement on ending a crippling 19-day-old strike.

Today's Birthdays: Recording executive Berry Gordy Jr. is 79. Former Sen. Gary Hart, D-Colo., is 72. Singer-songwriter Bruce Channel is 68. Singer Randy Newman is 65. Movie director Joe Dante is 62. CBS News correspondent Susan Spencer is 62. "Late Show" orchestra leader Paul Shaffer is 59. Actor Ed Harris is 58. Actress S. Epatha Merkerson is 56. Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff is 55. Country singer Kristine Arnold (Sweethearts of the Rodeo) is 52. Actor Judd Nelson is 49. Movie director Alfonso Cuaron is 47. Rock musician Matt Cameron is 46. Actress Jane Sibbett is 46. Comedian Jon Stewart is 46. Actress Garcelle Beauvais-Nilon is 42. Rhythm-and-blues singer Dawn Robinson is 40. Hip-hop musician apl.de.ap (Black Eyed Peas) is 34. Actress Aimee Garcia is 30. Rapper Chamillionaire is 29. 

Thought for Today: "I am not sure that God always knows who are His great men; He is so very careless of what happens to them while they live." -- Mary Hunter Austin, American novelist and playwright (1868-1934).

The truly obsessed &/or bored may want to compare this yr.'s to last.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Peggy Noonan Wises Up, Goes Back to Picking on Media for Picking on Sarah Palin

Some of us know which side our bread is buttered on.And here, oddly enough, is the media itself hyping the Gov. Oh, that's not the liberal elite media? It's yet another goofy outfit w/ funding from a crazy millionaire or something. (Go to "TV Ads." Nine classics.)

Why Read When You Can Watch?

Thanks. For Nothing. Jerk.

Some revisionism from those Liberal Bibles, the Times(es?) of each coast. Don't choke on your turkey, Yanqui! From the L. A. Bible: Thanksgiving wasn't shit until Honest Abe made it a National Holiday.
During Reconstruction, many Southerners initially expressed reluctance at celebrating what they saw to be a Yankee holiday. And yet it was at this moment, as the recently rejoined United States struggled to reconcile its populace after a divisive Civil War, that it became useful to reinvent the history of Thanksgiving. Most Americans found it far more pleasant to imagine this American holiday as originating not during the traumas of the 1860s but rather during the more distant past of the early 1600s. To partisans of the Union and the Confederacy alike, the image of Pilgrims and Indians sitting down together to a shared meal offered a comforting vision of peace between potential rivals.
Yet this new image of Thanksgiving not only allowed Americans to gloss over the deep divisions that had led to the Civil War, it also overlooked much of the subsequent history of the Pilgrims' relations with their Indian neighbors. About 50 years after Massasoit and his fellow Wampanoags enjoyed their harvest meal at Plymouth, the Colonists' seizures of Wampanoag land would precipitate a vicious war between Plymouth Colony and the Wampanoags, now led by Massasoit's son, Metacom.
At least they waited a few yrs. before starting slaughter & enslavement. People of Gawd, huh?
The even more liberal (if possible) Times of the East notes it was Frenchies who came here (& they had the good sense to settle in Florida instead of Mass.) fleeing religious persecution in 1564.
With this, America’s first pilgrims disappeared from the pages of history. Casualties of Europe’s murderous religious wars, they fell victim to Anglophile historians who erased their existence as readily as they demoted the Spanish settlement of St. Augustine to second-class status behind the later English colonies in Jamestown and Plymouth. But the truth cannot be so easily buried. Although overlooked, a brutal first chapter had been written in the most untidy history of a “Christian nation.” And the sectarian violence and hatred that ended with the deaths of a few hundred Huguenots in 1565 would be replayed often in early America, the supposed haven for religious dissent, which in fact tolerated next to none.
So there, exceptionalists. This country is no big deal, in no way, shape or form founded by Jeezis or a Mormon, but has come as far as it has mostly by plain luck, unless your ancestors came over by land bridge rather than the Mayflower.

The Real War on X-Mess

Below: Start of a bad Holiday Sales Season
Even purists must admit the stores have been decorated for wks. now, but they still hold that "The Holidays" don't start until Thanksgiving. IF THE "HOLIDAYS" START AT ALL THIS YR.! 
Piles of jewelry, clothing and electric drills are bypassing store shelves and heading straight to liquidators by the caseload as stores try to save as much cash as they can. Major department stores and mall-based chains have cut prices up to 70 percent to move out mounds of excess inventory stuck in the pipeline since the financial crisis hit in September and people snapped their wallets shut. Big moves of merchandise happen every year — but usually after Christmas. This year stores are desperate to shed inventory even before Thanksgiving. "The holiday season is over. The reason? It just never got started," said Marshal Cohen, chief industry analyst at NPD Group, a market research firm. [...] At the company's Liquidation.com, which auctions surplus goods offered by stores and manufacturers to dollar stores and small businesses that sell on eBay, the number of auctions scheduled for the Thanksgiving weekend has soared to 2,100 — eight times more than last Thanksgiving, said chief executive Bill Angrick. In other words, what normally happens after Christmas is taking place this weekend, he said."This is about survival. This is not about muddling through the holiday season," Angrick said.
The party's over. (Can schadenfreude be sung?)

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Your Papers, Please

A brief, non-comprehensive history of Nat'l ID cards, the U. K. having decided to make non-subject residents carry them.
National ID cards are widely used for identification purposes in many European countries, although they are not used in the Nordic countries. Many people are able to cross Europe's inner borders without passports, if they have valid national ID cards. There have been few problems associated with card use, although there were protests in Greece after European Union officials forced Greeks to drop the religious classification that was part of the ID card system. The situation is very different from that in Latin America, where people have become accustomed to carrying identification papers with them and are less worried about privacy issues. Brazil's card includes a photo, fingerprint, bar-code, both parents' full names, nationality, country of birth and date of birth. These cards are necessary to for almost any economic transaction — Brazil's stores ask for it when consumers make purchases, even when they pay cash.
Yikes, it's the Mark of the Beast: "Ye can neither buy nor sell w/o it!!"
Britain's two prior experiences with national cards have not ended well. Cards were used in World War I in large part to establish the number of young men available for military service, but they were not well liked and were dropped in 1918, said Jon Agar, a science and technology professor at University College London. They were reintroduced in World War II and kept in place until 1952, when a court challenge spurred harsh judicial criticism of the use of the cards in peacetime.

That led Prime Minister Winston Churchill's government to scrap the system. The court challenge stemmed from a routine traffic stop in which a policeman asked the motorist to produce his ID card, Agar said. "That was not the intent of the card," he said. "It was originally for national security and food rationing, not for police using it as a routine form of identification." He predicted Britons will generally accept the new cards until their use becomes compulsory for everyone. That will spur resentment, he said.
But they'll doubtless submit, grumbling all the way.

Editorial Panels

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Why We Fought

Gulf War A: Freedom for Kuwait.
The resignation of the 16-member government opened the door to speculation that the emir, the country's head of state, would dissolve parliament and call elections to defuse growing tension between the two branches of government in Kuwait's volatile democracy.
And democracy.
Showdown threatens democracy in Kuwait

Another Fuggin' Election Wrap-Up

A member of the biased liberal elite media takes a look at some two-faced weasels who were as likely as not to have voted Feudal in the last two presidential elections, but went for B. O. this time.
Nine of the 12 said McCain could have won their vote. Mark Parowski, who described himself as a "hard-core Republican," didn't pick Obama until the moment he was in the election booth. His wife had been to Obama's last rally in Manassas, Va., the night before, along with 90,000 others, and said it sounded as if Obama was talking right to her in her living room. His disgust with Republicans was a big factor in his vote, Parowski said, but he also saw backing Obama as a chance to make a generational change.
[...]
No one thought he was an elitist celebrity. Several mentioned that he'd once been so poor he owned a car with a hole in the floor. Two women (both of whom voted for Bush in the last two elections) had been impressed by Oprah's endorsement, which was when they first heard about Obama.
We'll satisfy ourselves w/ the semi-hopeful realization that those who hadn't heard of B. O. until Oprah endorsed him are, we hope, the only ones who would be influenced by her endorsement.

Vulgarity on the Interwebs

If the furry pelts of dead rodents draped across ideological hard-liners (female) are your idea of "hot," you may as well just lock the door now. You won't be leaving for a while, you pervert.
Our favorite so far? Mary Katharine Ham. Or is it Bill O'Reilly? (Read the caption & decide.)
A regular on the Fox News Channel's O'Reilly Factor, Mary Katharine Ham is the online editor of The Washington Examiner. Formerly the managing editor of Townhall.com, O'Reilly is wearing a green three-quarter length sheared mink coat with laser grooving from Miller's Furs. (Courtesy 2008 Clare Boothe Luce Policy Institute/Photography by KochFoto)
Talk about lipstick on a pig. Ms. Ham doesn't usually look this bad when she's not tarted up. Maybe the stylist was having some fun.

Annals of Wilful Ignorance or Bestial Stupidity

Again from the Papist Imperialist. It sounds like an Onion story, but we think they mean it.
The National Black Republicans Association has called for president elect Obama to issue a formal apology for the Democratic Party’s 150 year history of racism.
Nope, no mention at all of any Democrats (LBJ, maybe?) who've done anything anti-racist. And not the slightest mention that the Republican Party has taken the mantle of Southern Racism right off the back of those Democrats & paraded it around w/out shame (but w/ a fair amount of success). About the only living Dixiecrat who didn't change parties, Robert Byrd, has apologized long, often & profusely for his youthful KKK involvement, not that that stopped the Black Republicans from dragging his name into it.
The patent absurdity of calling for the first less than 100% Anglo-Saxon President-elect to apologize for his party's past racism after it nominated & elected him is, well, typical. The spiral into the gravity well of Bizarro world is accelerating.

Keeping The Military on a Volunteer Basis

No Religious Test?

Be ready to hear a lot of crap about B.O. not attending church on a daily basis. From comments at a Papist, imperialist web log
"President-elect Barack Obama has yet to attend church services since winning the White House earlier this month, a departure from the example of his two immediate predecessors.

Both President-elect George W. Bush and President-elect Bill Clinton managed to attend church in the weeks after they were elected.

In the weeks after the contested 2000 election, Bush regularly attended services at Tarrytown United Methodist Church in Austin, Texas, and Al Gore was frequently photographed arriving at and leaving church in Virginia.

"On his first day as president-elect, following weeks of Florida recounts and court hearings, Bush went to church with his wife, Laura. They attended an invite-only prayer service on Thursday, Dec. 14, at Tarrytown United Methodist Church. About 300 people attended, including top campaign staff and visiting clergy. During the service, the Rev. Mark Craig, senior pastor at Highland Park United Methodist Church in Dallas, told Bush, "You have been chosen by God to lead the people."

Obama was an infrequent churchgoer on the campaign trail.... blah, blah"

Obama skips church, heads to gym JONATHAN MARTIN & CAROL E. LEE | 11/23/08 3:41 PM EST  http://www.politico.com/news/stories/1108/15902.html

Bad Omen?

Working link to the Politico story. Is this why Obama should go to church more often, so he can be told he's gawd's personal choice? We were under the impression that B. O.'s ego was so swollen (due to his right wing-granted "messianic" status) that having his ass kissed in the name of gawd wouldn't be such a good idea. Nonetheless, we'll doubtless be hearing that he's a gawdless Muslim, & here's the proof: No church! This is going to be an ugly eight yrs. And since the Prez-elect is calm, cool, collected & too damn smart to make much of a fool of himself, we'll have to be looking to the rabid weasel assault on him for amusement/outrage, not the actions of the administration. Alright!!

Also:

Rev. Mark Craig, senior pastor at Highland Park United Methodist Church in Dallas, told Bush, "You have been chosen by God to lead the people."

Really? We thought the fucking Supreme Court "chose" him. And we thought that the people were supposed to do the choosing, not the damn court. Not one word about Gawd making any choices in the Constitution.