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Friday, February 29, 2008

Code 55

It looks like Hal's declared a Code 55:

Code 55 in effect as of March 1
Those who need to know what this means already know.
Those who don't know, don't need to know.

I wish he'd stop declaring these at the last minute like this. Where's a guy going to find a clean-shaven goat this late at night?

Hal Comments

In the comments to the post below, Hal blubbers:

So the secret service contacted you eh? Big fuckin deal. They've been to my house at least twice in the past seven years over things I've said on the air and on my site.
Both times, they were powerless to do anything.
They are still powerless to do anything about what I've written.
Get all of your people to call them. I couldn't give a shit less.
Hal Turner

Bond had Q; Jethro has Hal Turner

Update: The nice folks at the Southern Poverty Law Center got a screen cap of Hal's threat against Obama before he took it down. It's been forwarded to the Secret Service agent investigating the case.
---

I received a note from the Secret Service yesterday asking me to call them about the post where I quoted former Republican party official and regular Sean Hannity guest, Hal Turner, threatening Barack Obama. I have to admit I was a little nervous, because Turner had removed the post from his site and it wasn't cached at Google--he has anti-spidering code on his site. "Would they think I made it up," I wondered.

Fortunately, Turner can't help himself. I glanced at his site as I dialed the Secret Service and saw this (as I noted before, you will have to scroll down--Hal thinks permalinks are Jewish):

Ricin is easy to make from castor beans. Castor beans are legal to buy, can be gotten throughout the country or via the internet. Even more interesting is that the internet is full of "how-to" information explaining how to cook the husks of castor beans into this poison.

Since as little as 500 micrograms of ricin can kill an adult, I wonder if smearing some on a glove then shaking hands with. . . . . . Barak Obama or Hillary Clinton or John McCain. . . . would have some effect? Probably not. But I wonder if loading some in a straw equipped with a one-way valve at one end to protect the user, would allow ricin powder to be blown in the direction of a candidate for inhalation? HMMMMMMM. It's a good thing that I obey the law and have no intention of doing something like this personally!

[...]

Yes, I see good reason for the political candidates this year to be gotten rid of and from my viewpoint, ricin could be used by some nefarious person to accomplish that. It's the type of weapon that Secret Service cannot protect anyone from. What are they gonna do, check everyone for straws as they enter a campaign venue? And once the poison is delivered, there is no treatment and no cure. Death is 100% guaranteed.


This time I made a screen cap:



If any of you made a screencap of the previous post. I would appreciate it if you could send it to me so I can get it to the Secret Service.

Here's Hal's Obama post again:

The REAL Barack Obama:

Is THIS the type of guy you want running America? I Don't!



In fact, I'm starting to come to the realization that it may be up to a sole person, acting alone, to make certain this guy is never allowed to hold the most powerful office in the world. Sorry it may have to be that way, but it may.

Update: A Product of Conservative Radio

Hal first came to my notice about 10 or 12 years ago on the usenet group alt.radio.talk. He was a big fan of Limbaugh and a regular caller to Bob Grant's show on WABC. He spent a great deal of his time on alt.radio.talk defending Grant from charges of racism (Grant liked to refer to blacks as "savages.") Eventually, he began playing audio clips attacking Clinton and David Dinkins during his calls to Grant's show and others and became popular enough to get his own radio gig. That all ended when he finally stopped pretending to be a non-racist and moved his show to shortwave and the internet.

You may also recall that Hal was involved in a controversy two years ago when he celebrated the murders of U.S. Judge Joan Lefkow's husband and mother in their apartment, after he had previously called for her assassination.

Books for Soldiers Fundraiser Dance

7pm SLT/PST, tonight in Second Life.

O'Reilly and the Roombas of the Apocalypse

Roger Ailes
Fox News Channel

Dear Mr. Ailes,

Ever since 2002, when Our Leader warned first warned us about Saddam's Intercontinental Robot Flying Machines of Death, I've been afeared, very afeared of the threat roboislamunistofascists pose to our way of life.

Those fears increased a hundred fold today after I viewed your network's report on the possibility that terrorist evil-doers are on the verge of acquiring robotic vacuum cleaner weapons technology. How do we counter something like that? I mean, vacuum cleaners are everywhere. How will we be able to determine if our household Hoovers aren't actually Roombas of mass destruction?

And if you think about it, Orik-equipped evil doers are only part of the problem. Robotic devices are everywhere these days, probably even in the private offices of Fox News Channel's biggest stars.

We both know how much Bill O'Reilly loves anatomically correct vibrating devices like the ReamMaster 5000--it's all right there in the Andrea Makris pleading. Well, I hear that the ReamMaster 6000 with it's open-source Shudder-n-Scream® Pleasure Enhancement Technology is coming out in September. They're touting it as the first robotic dildonic device ever to be introduced in the United States*. Do you think Bill can resist Shudder-n-Scream® Pleasure Enhancement Technology. Hell no. He probably has an intern camped out at Sweet Reams Industries waiting for 6000's release even as I'm writing this.

Now suppose terrorists find a way to hack into it. Picture it. There's Bill sitting in his office. He's holding his 6000 against the phone, like he did when he was "courting" Andrea Makris, so his latest 'assistant' can hear it when, all of a sudden, the terrorist's program kicks in, causing the democracy-hating dildonic device to repeatedly strike him about the head and shoulders until he slumps, bleeding, to the floor.

You're going to need to take steps to ensure this doesn't happen. It's not going to be easy. My guess is that your only option is to move Fox down to Alabama, where such devices are illegal, as soon as possible. That's what I'm going to do.

Heterosexually yours,

Gen. JC Christian, patriot

*Apple is at least a year from away from launching their iBoink--word is they are in a big patent imbroglio with Rep. Patrick McHenry, who's claiming he created a similar product using duct tape, a washing machine, and a College Republican.

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Celebrate Hairstock 08 with me on Saturday

HAIRSTOCK 08: Saturday, March 1st, 7pm, and again at 9pm.
Jackson Street Books and the General will be hosting a showing of the movie Hair at Central Cinema in Seattle. Central Cinema is a dinner theater, with food and drinks brought to your table. The bistro opens at 6pm, and the movie shows at 7pm, and again at 9pm.
$5 Ticket at the door.

I command you to attend. I'll be there for the 7pm showing for sure and maybe the 9pm too.

X Degrees of Tim Russert

As a conservative, I've always been a fan of Tim Russert. He's kind of a more likable Limbaugh. And by golly, I don't think I've ever seen him more Limbaugh-like than he was last night when he made Obama play the guilt by association game.

But now, I worry someone will do it to him.



Wednesday, February 27, 2008

The Zygote-American Community's Battle Against Porn

Kristi Burton
Colorado for Equal Rights

Dear Mrs. Burton,

Congratulations. I bet you're thrilled to get Mike Huckabee's endorsement for your ballot initiative conferring personhood on zygote-Americans. I think his backing might be just the thing you need to put it over the top.

It's a great initiative. I salute you for taking the time to craft such a fine measure. Still, there is always room for improvement, and as good as your initiative is, it's missing a key component.

We live in a very permissive culture. Due to the influence of Hollywood, feminists, and Luther Vandross, most Americans consider the sex act to be more a form of recreation than a reproductive chore. We no longer have a cultural constraint against engaging in sex more than once every six months or so. Indeed, I've seen research that suggests that many people engage in it as often as two or three times a month. I know it's hard to believe--we certainly don't associate with those kinds of people--but the data support it.

Think about the implications of that for a moment. With so many people having sex that frequently, there is bound to be a certain number of them who are pregnant. That means countless numbers of zygote-Americans are being forced to view the worst kind of pornography, live sex acts.

It must be incredibly traumatic for them. There they are getting a little extra mitosis in so they can get an early promotion to blastocyst when all of a sudden a man's thingy comes shooting in out of nowhere. And good golly, it's got to look huge from their perspective--little boy zygote-Americans will no doubt be haunted with feelings of inadequacy the rest of their lives.

It only gets worse after that. Millions of spermatazoan-Americans spurting into their homes like so many Medicare recipients swarming a Canadian drug store, and then a hanging around for awhile, bothering them with questions like, "Are you sure you've been fertilized," "would you like to hear some old Luther Vandross vinyl," and "let me show you my etchings," before finally dying en masse all around the shell-shocked little citizens.

We've got to do all we can to protect them from such horrors. That's why I'm asking you to sponsor a second initiative, one that would create an anti-pornography statute specifically tailored for our newest citizens. I'm sure Gov. Huckabee will endorse it too.

Heterosexually yours in a biblically acceptable kind of way,

Gen. JC Christian, patriot

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

He's Back

Update II: The nice folks at the Southern Poverty Law Center got a screen cap of Hal's threat against Obama before he took it down. It's been forwarded to the Secret Service agent investigating the case.

Update: Apparently, Hal's removed his thinly-veiled call for the assassination of Barack Obama. Maybe it made his FBI handlers a tad bit uncomfortable.

It's also not available in archive form. One wonders why such an heroically brave man would use cache exclusion code to deny posterity the opportunity to read his important words.
---

It was only a little over a month ago that I reported that former Republican party official and regular Sean Hannity guest, Hal Turner, had closed down his web site and ended his internet radio show.

Well, now he's back on the web and the radio bringing us his special brand of conservatism. Here's (you'll have to scroll down. Hal believes permalinks are Jewish) what he had to say about white nationalist James "Yankee Jim" Leshkevich's suicide after he murdered his wife (you may recall that I linked to Yankee Jim's final blog post a few days ago):

My View of the Yankee Jim Murder-Suicide

A Wicked, Taunting Adulteress Got Exactly What She Deserved!

My friend and long-time caller to my show, Yankee Jim, beat his wife's head in then strangled her to death. He then hanged himself.

Jim's wife, Deborah Leshkevich, intentionally and repeatedly cheated on her husband, Jim.

She engaged in "speed dating" on the internet and cheated with any number of others men for over a year.

Each time she was caught by her husband, he forgave her and trusted her to once again be faithful, only to find himself betrayed again and again.

In the most recent case, she even went so far as to claim to her boyfriend that she was "legally separated but living with her husband for economic purposes." Imagine the nerve of a woman who is feeding off her husband economically while she is sleeping around, then taunted Jimmy with it by telling him "Yes, I fucked another man and I liked it."! There's a word for that: slut.

Deborah Leshkevich was a wicked, taunting adulteress. She got exactly what she deserved.

The real tragedy of this incident is the death of Jimmy Leshkevich by his own hand. He was a good and decent man who supported and loved his family. He publicly stood-up for his race despite being reviled for it.

Jim Leshkevich was a friend of mine and I mourn his death. Jim was able to be a friend of mine because he met my criteria for friendship.

In order to be my friend, a person must be:
1) Willing to kill for our beliefs, AND;
2) Not afraid to die.

All the people who involve themselves with me fit this criteria.

Those speaking ill of my friend Jim would do well to remember this fact. If folks can' say anything nice about Jim, it would be best for them to say nothing at all.

And on the possibility that Barak Obama may be the Democratic nominee:

The REAL Barack Obama:

Is THIS the type of guy you want running America? I Don't!



In fact, I'm starting to come to the realization that it may be up to a sole person, acting alone, to make certain this guy is never allowed to hold the most powerful office in the world. Sorry it may have to be that way, but it may.

Monday, February 25, 2008

Cute Sea Lion Begs for Votes

THERE ARE MANY POSTS I almost make, many I mean to make, and a few that I actually say I will make, but don't get around to. One of the latter category was when a friend of mine (one I made when I first visited Oregon in 2002-ish, let's refer to this friend as "Mariana") actually rescued a sea lion. Here is text from one of Mariana's emails:

so i climb over rocks for about 20 feet through water trying not to get slammed into the wall by waves at the deep part. i get to the sandy part where the waves only occasionally got my feet wet and was at the cove FINALLY. there's the sea lion, looks emaciated and has an almost perfecly round wound on his flipper where you can see tendon and bone exposed (from a cookie cutter shark.) i only had a couple towels on me because the kennel carrier weighs 45lbs and we couldnt trek it all this way from the truck. i had to towel over his head with him trying to bite the towel (or me if i got close enough) until i got it over his head and pinned him down (he tried to get away, i had to grab his tail flippers while a life guard helped get the towel back on him.) so then i pick him up, he's heavier than he looks, about 50-70lbs and compact. i had to then carry him back through the rocks and the water, and manage to climb up the rocks i jumped down in the first place.


This "inside source" of mine works at Pacific Marine Mammal Center (PMMC), an organization dedicated to rescuing and helping marine animals in need. I was speaking to Mariana and got a lot of inside details on this story, for example. That was another post I meant to write up, but didn't get to.

The picture up top is a shot Mariana sent me of the sea lion described in the passage above. And this is the crazy stuff PMMC does on the regular!

I have to say I have mad respect for those people and organizations who are in it for the Good of it. From volunteer fireman to nurses to sea lion rescuers to peace corps members to activists of many stripes to volunteer poll workers... and so on.

As is the case when people are more motivated by a principle than a profit, they often need help from the rest of us, be it monetarily or with a simple online signature or vote. I write here now because PMMC is up for a small grant that will help them do what they do. Requires nothing from us but an electronic vote. No rock-scrambling, no towel wrapping, no sea lion cajoling. If you have the time and the energy, I ask you to please vote for their receiving this grant.

This year for Earth Day, Simple Green has nominated Pacific Marine Mammal Center to compete against 3 other organizations for their annual Earth Day Grant that totals $5,000!!!!

All you need to do is go to the website and vote for us, #4. It's 1 vote per email address, so if you have more than 1, use all of them!

Please forward this email on to all your friends and family, and help PMMC win!!

http://www.simplegreen.com/community_adopt_a_clean_up.php

Melissa Sciacca

Director of Development / Marketing
Pacific Marine Mammal Center
949.494.3050
www.pacificmmc.org


I told Mariana that I have a decent-sized readership of gente who are all concerned with gored, lost, and knifed sea lions! Don't make a liar out of Nezua!

And gracias.

Crossposted to The Unapologetic Mexican, Culture Kitchen, and OpEdNews.

Clinton's Press Team Thinks You're Stupid

SEE UPDATE BELOW

Patriotboy in for the General again.

As I noted with a link in the update to the post below, the Clinton campaign got even sleazier over the weekend when they sent an email to the media featuring a picture of Obama dressed in the traditional regalia of a Somali elder he had donned during an official visit to Africa. The email had its desired effect--it's already feeding into the right's "Obama is a secret Muslim" attacks. Rush Limbaugh was ranting about the "Obama dressed like a Muslim photo" earlier today.

How did the Clinton campaign respond when asked about it? Well, lets look at the statement issued by Clinton spokesperson Maggie Williams:

If Barack Obama's campaign wants to suggest that a photo of him wearing traditional Somali clothing is divisive, they should be ashamed.

Yes, she really blamed it on Obama. You see, the Clinton press team thinks you are stupid.

I'm still giving Sen. Clinton the benefit of the doubt on this. She can prove that she doesn't support this kind of sleazy swiftboating by issuing an apology and by firing Phil Singer, Maggie Williams, and anyone else who was involved in this.

The Clinton Campaign is feeling the heat. Keep calling, keep writing and keep asking other bloggers to join in. As I said in my earlier post, this is where we learn whether all of Sen. Clinton's talk about character is more than just talk.

You can call the campaign at:

National HQ: 703.469.2008
Ohio HQ: 614.221.8600
Texas HQ: 512.383.0318

And email them at:

Campaign Chair Terry McAuliffe: TMcAuliffe@hillaryclinton.com

Clinton Campaign HQ

You may want to copy Phil Singer and Maggie Williams. Maybe they will do the right thing.

psinger@hillaryclinton.com
mwilliams@hillaryclinton.com

***

Update:

I've received a lot of feedback from commenters and others whom I respect about this post. As always, I take your comments seriously and I've given the post a lot of thought, frequently changing my mind during the process. In a comment this (Tuesday) morning, I said that I was going to do a partial retraction, and I will, but only very narrowly. The best I can do is say I don't know if the Drudge story is correct. I know that will not satisfy anyone, but it's an honest assessment of my thinking. I simply don't know.

I'm laying out my thoughts on this below. Take from it what you will.

The story I cited--that Clinton staffers were peddling a picture of Obama in the traditional dress of a Somali elder-was first published by Drudge. A few of you pointed out that since it's from Drudge, it can't be trusted. I think that's a fairly compelling counter argument. He's certainly not known for his objectivity.

The wording of his post is also suspicious. He says "...in an email obtained by the DRUDGE REPORT" The phasing suggest that he received the email from a third party. If that's the case, why not name the author? I suppose it is possible that Drudge's source was the recipient of the email was concerned that he or she could be identified if the source was identified and therefore provided the email to Drudge on the condition that the sender not be named, but if that was the case, Drudge doesn't say so.

On the other hand, it looks like the campaign has used Drudge before to disseminate information.

Some have suggested that the fact that the picture was once posted to the Free Republic somehow exculpates the Clinton campaign. One has nothing do with the other. No one is claiming the Clinton campaign created the photo, only that they were marketing it to the press.

Unlike many Obama supporters, I don't see Clinton's failure to declaratively state that staffers didn't send the email to be particularly damning. It may have very well been a rogue staffer. But that level of uncertainty points out a huge issue I've always had with her campaign. It's staffed with some of the sleaziest people the party has to offer--people like Mark Penn whose company represents Blackwater and touts union busting as a specialty and Terry McAuliffe, the man most responsible for selling the party to corporate interests. It's no wonder she can't say whether the email originated from her campaign. With people like that in the top positions, the campaign's culture is undoubtedly morally bankrupt.

They've also engaged in this kind of sleazy tactic before. just last Friday, they sent an email to the press that insinuated that Obama was sympathetic to terrorists--see my post Sen. Clinton, fire Phil Singer. This time there was a name attached, Phil singer.

I called the campaign on Monday, and they did not deny that Singer sent the email. I thought about that as I watched the debate that night and heard Mrs. Clinton say she would fire anyone who participated in such tactics. Why hasn't Singer been fired? they were aware it was a problem. They expressed their unhappiness with your letters when I spoke to them. tally another stroke for campaign culture.

I also still disgusted Maggie Williams responded to the Somali picture. It was offensive to portray the flap as evidence that Obama somehow hares other cultures. She assumed her audience, including you and me, are stupid. Those are my thoughts.

I want to thank everyone who's discussed this with me either by email or in the comments. It's been fascinating to see people who've I've always considered to my philosophical peers attack me as if I had just come out for David Duke. All I can say is it won't be the end of the world if your candidate, Clinton or Obama, loses the primary. The important thing is that one of them wins in November.

Sen. Clinton, Fire Phil Singer

My inner Frenchman dumps me out of my chair, takes the keyboard, and writes the following.

It's no secret what I think of the remaining candidates for the Democratic nomination. Senators Clinton and Obama were not my candidates. I had a very difficult time choosing whom to support in my caucus once Edwards and Dodd dropped out, but I eventually settled on Obama, simply because I think he matches up better in a race against McCain. I would not, however, call myself an Obama supporter. I find his health care plan, detestable, and his calls for bipartisanship, naive. Still, in the spirit of full disclosure, I feel it is important to note that I did caucus for him.

I'm writing out of character today because I'm very angry about a stunt the Clinton campaign pulled on Friday. According to ABC News, Clinton spokesperson Phil Singer emailed information about contacts Barak Obama had with two former Weather Underground members, William Ayers and Bernadine Dorn, implying that perhaps Obama was a little too sympathetic to terrorists.

It was despicable act of swiftboating. What Singer failed to note was that Ayers was never convicted of a crime, and Dorn had served her time. Both had reached a certain level of respectability--Ayres as Distinguished Professor of Education at the University of Illinois at Chicago and Dorn as an Associate Professor of Law at Northwestern University School of Law and the Director of Northwestern's Children and Family Justice Center) by the time Obama attended the event at their home which Singer so excitedly touted as a contact with terrorists.

Singer's excuse that he was merely pointing out an electability problem--one that the Republicans will use to smear Obama--is disingenuous. It overlooks an important fact: Bill Clinton's pardon of Weather Underground member Susan L. Rosenberg and 16 members of the FALN makes Sen. Clinton just as vulnerable to the same charges.

The worst thing about Singer's smear is that it feeds into the Republicans' stealthy and not-so-stealthy attempts to paint Obama as a secret Muslim who is sympathetic to the jihadist cause. It legitimizes it in the same way Bush's assault on the Bill of Rights is legitimized by the Blue Dog Democrat's support--"Hey Earl, it must be true; even the Democrats are saying it." I can almost see the attack ads as I write this: "Even Hillary Clinton worried about Obama's ties to terrorists. Even more despicable is how Singer borrowed the Republican's racist dog whistle to blow the alarm about the otherness of black men with exotic names. It's all part of the same, disgusting package.

I don't know how much Sen. Clinton had to do with this outrageous bit of swiftboating. It's possible that she was unaware of it. The only way we can judge is how she reacts to it. That's why I am asking you to write and call the campaign, tell them that this kind of smear is unacceptable, and ask them to fire Phil Singer and issue a public apology. She talks a lot about character. Let's see if she'll demonstrate it.

You can call the campaign at:

National HQ: 703.469.2008
Ohio HQ: 614.221.8600
Texas HQ: 512.383.0318

And email them at:

Campaign Chair Terry McAuliffe: TMcAuliffe@hillaryclinton.com

Clinton Campaign HQ

You may want to copy Phil Singer. Maybe he will do the right thing.

psinger@hillaryclinton.com

Update: They just can't help themselves.

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Fear-Based Initiatives: Capitalizing on Fear & Loathing


Fear-Based Initiatives: Capitalizing on Fear & Loathing
Image © Austin Cline
Click for full-sized Image

There's no denying that fear is a great motivator. It is in fact one of our most fundamental drives - we wouldn't survive without it. Leaders of all sorts - political, religious, familial - have surely used fear for as long as humans have lived in social groups. Men have used fear of violence and financial ruin to keep women in line. Parents have used fear of hairy palms to suppress kids' natural sexual instincts. Priests use fear of eternal torment to ensure social unity. Kings use fear of domestic oppression to preserve loyalty. Dictators use secret police, secret courts, and secret prisons to create the fear needed to eliminate dissent.

A certain amount of fear is probably healthy - complete fearlessness would be more of a liability than a virtue. At the same time, though, it is not healthy to have fear as a basis for action, policy, or decision making. It's healthy to have a little fear of a hot stove, for example, but when decision-making is based on fear, you may never turn the stove on or may never even learn how to use it properly.

Fear should be a basis of concern or caution, but a mentally, psychologically, and emotionally healthy person is able to see beyond that fear and base decisions on other interests. You can't act as a free, independent, and autonomous person unless you move beyond your fears.

The same is true of communities and nations - there can't be growth, progress, or development in any society ruled by fear. Politics and political parties are also not healthy if they become obsessed with fear or the origins of fear: enemies, threats, wars, disasters, etc. Problems like these will always be with us and always pose a danger, but you can't focus on them alone because there are too many other interests to take into account. It's smart to take potential threats into account and plan ahead, but society itself will not move ahead unless it moves beyond that.

This explains a lot about the Republican Party today, I think. Their faith-based initiatives are largely a means for pandering to evangelical churches, not a sign that real faith or hope can be found at the core of Republican politics. Instead, the core seems much more involved with fear-based initiatives because they are offered as solutions to just about every issue that comes along in America.

Building a wall along America's southern border is a fear-based initiative to stop the brown hordes from engulfing a white America. Abstinence-only education is a fear-based initiative to prevent teens from discovering sex and learning that it might be possible to have sex without catching a disease or getting pregnant. Censoring government data is a fear-based initiative to prevent Americans from learning that the truth might be different from administration propaganda.

Aside from stemming from fear, all of these initiatives share at least one other important feature in common: they don't work. A wall along the southern border won't keep out illegal immigrants. Abstinence-only education doesn't stop teens from having sex or prevent pregnancies. Censoring government data doesn't keep it out of the hands of activists who can use it to prove how the administration has been lying.

The same is true of the administration's reactions to global terrorism. The Republican Party is trying to make people afraid of terrorism in order to gain support for legalizing the administration's warrantless domestic spying, but there is no evidence that their spying has actually provided any net benefits - and they refuse to tell whether it's led to any harm.

The administration is not just trying to promote fear, though. I think that they are themselves afraid - not just of terrorism, but of the American people themselves. It's Americans the administration is trying to justify spying on, and it's the people who will decide what happens to administration officials once all details of the various spy programs are released. There's a lot to be afraid of there.

This was originally a movie poster for the film O Despertar Da Besta, directed by José Mojica Marins. The victims' faces have been left untouched; the other faces have been edited to reflect appropriate political figures.

Saturday, February 23, 2008

Department of Book Reports 56: Academy Awards Edition


I’ve been reading a lot of history books recently, so I decided to take a break from non-fiction and read a novel. It has also been a long while since I’ve read Cormac McCarthy (I read and admired All the Pretty Horses several years ago) and I decided to read his novel previous to his most recent, The Road, No Country for Old Men (Vintage $14.00). The title is taken from William Butler Yeats’ poem, Sailing to Byzantium. What a ride it is.

The plot is straight-forward. A hunter, Llewellyn Moss stumbles across a dope-deal gone bad in the desert borderlands. Most of the dealers are dead, or dying. Moss finds a satchel with two million dollars and a lot of heroin. Moss takes the money (and leaves the heroin); the other dealers discover who he is and set out after him. Moving from town to town, Moss tries to stay ahead of them, especially one persistent man Anton Chigurh who is especially relentless in trying to recover the money. In the meantime, Sheriff Ed Tom Bell tries to track Moss (and Moss’s wife) down in order to save their lives. Mayhem ensues.

The bloodletting is a dominant feature of the novel. But so is the writing. McCarthy has a fine knack of understanding and developing his characters. His ear for dialogue is superb. There is not a dull word, phrase, sentence or paragraph in this book. Llewellyn Moss is a smart man, but not smart enough. In Anton Chigurh we have the most fascinating sociopath in fiction since Hannibal Lecter. Sheriff Bell is aging, knows he’s aging, and discovers he is no longer capable of carrying out his personal mission of protecting the people under his charge. The Texas-Mexico border has become an area of such chaos and violence that, for someone like him, it is indeed is no country for old men.

The Academy Awards are this weekend, and, yes, I know that the Coen Brothers have adapted the book, and are nominated for Best Picture, Best Adapted Screenplay and Best Direction. I haven’t seen the movie. In reading the book, and knowing and liking their work, I can see why they were attracted to the subject matter. It is my understanding from reading the IMDB article on the movie that the adaptation is very faithful, nearly scene for scene from the book, and the McCarthy dialogue is left in tact. If so, that is a good thing. I don’t see how it can be improved upon.

A number of this year’s Oscar nominees are also based on books. They include Ian McEwan’s Atonement (Anchor $6.99); There Will Be Blood, based in part on an old Upton Sinclair novel, Oil (Penguin $15.00); Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford by Ron Hansen (HarperCollins $7.99); George Crile’s Charlie Wilson’s War (Grove $14.95); Jon Krakauer’s Into the Wild (Anchor $13.95); American Gangster by Mark Jacobson (Grove $14.00); and the French film Diving Bell and the Butterfly (Vintage $12.95). All these books, including No Country for Old Men, are available at Jackson Street Books and fine Independent Bookstores everywhere!
(we love Grove Books, but they don't have a "user-friendly" website.)

democommie™™™™®© is once again upset that the Academy has neglected his many fine performances with no nominations.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

This must be stopped!





I can't tell you want a danger it would be to have Larry Lessig in Congress. He's not enough of a politician!. Worse still he's already shown he can make big changes! Do people even understand what would happen if someone where to act now rather than just standing there? It's time to face the music and realize what a horrible danger having effective, knowledgeable intellectuals in Congress would be. They might start looking at issues.

And thinking about them.

And persuading other people to think about them.

And then vote that way.

Oh the democracy!

A hypothetical situation

Let's say you're one of the greatest presidents who ever lived. You launched a war against the greatest enemy your nation has ever faced and achieved victory in a few short days. After five years of mopping up operations, things are looking up, you may have even reached the point where State Department personnel can walk around the Embassy complex with only light body armor.

Then you're told that one of your "spy" satellites is falling to Earth. It's a big "spy" satellite, the size of a bus (let's just say it has a big freaking camera the size of, oh, the trajectory-adjustment stage and warheads of a Minuteman missile--I'm just using the trajectory-adjustment stage and warheads of a Minuteman missile for comparison purposes here--we all know it would be a violation of international law to place a nuke in orbit).

So anyway, this bus-sized "spy" satellite is falling to Earth. And although much of it will burn up in the atmosphere, big pieces of the "camera," perhaps even those containing plutonium or the inertial guidance system, will remain intact. These pieces could injure some one. What do you do?

It's an easy answer, really. You'd want to intercept it and blow it up into pieces small enough that they will be totally consumed in re-entry. It's basically the same principle that was employed to solve another large object removal problem back in the seventies. Take a few minutes to watch this video and you'll see what I mean:



Something completely different:

I've been debating whether to post about this, but it seemed too ghoulish, so I'll just briefly describe it and give you a couple of links.

On Monday, a white supremacist leader named James “Yankee Jim” Leshkevich wrote his last blog post, murdered his wife, and hanged himself.

Someone call Drudge

****Jesus' General Exclusive****
MUST CREDIT JESUS' GENERAL!!!!

Hillary had sex with Bill Clinton in the White House!

developing...

Pardon the mess

Hopefully after we work out the kinks in the new template (no, the title header will not look like it does now), this page will look great and load faster and Obama's ties to the international Amish conspiracy will be exposed for all the world to see.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Fondly Rememembering Marshal Petain

Fr. Vicente A. Griego
St. Mary's Academy

Dear Father Griego,

I've been in a bit of a funk lately over the lack of progress we've made privatizing the schools. It looked like we were on the verge of making it happen eight years ago when the People wisely chose a man of great faith and intellect, George W. Bush, to rule us as Our Leader. Vouchers, which at the very least are a back-door attempt at privatization, were all the rage and high on Our Leader's list of priorities. Then all of a sudden, talk about vouchers seemed to cease.

I didn't know why it happened. I thought maybe it was because we were distracted by World War IV, the existential battle between good and evil that began on Sept. 11, 2001, or perhaps it was the wholesale destruction of American culture that resulted from the bad reviews written about The Passion of the Christ. But those were only guesses, and I found the lack of clarity to be very unsettling.

Then today, as I read about your referee incident, it struck me. The voucher movement didn't market privatization in the right way. In order to avoid silly arguments over the Constitution's Establishment Clause, they understated the importance pf religious schools in this new educational system, and by doing so failed to employ it's best selling point.

Let's take a look at the referee issue. You were right to refuse to allow a woman to referee a basketball game. As you noted, it would be wrong for a woman to exercise authority over boys, because ladies can't properly provide "training for the battlefield of life where the boys will need to fight at times through great difficulties."

Think of how that would have played as a marketing point for vouchers. Heck, we wouldn't even need to lay any groundwork for it. Rush, Dr. Laura, Phyllis Schlafly , Beverly Lehaye, James Dobson, and the whole Southern Baptist Convention are already marketing the same basic idea as a response to femislamunistofascism. It wouldn't take much to layer vouchers onto that.

The same goes for your curriculum. I'm sure many parents want their children to learn the things you teach in your 12th grade Catholic Social Principles class--that is if I'm correctly assuming that you are teaching Catholic doctrine as it is understood by the Society of St. Pius X, the priestly society that runs your school. Specifically, I'm referring to such beliefs as:
I think most Americans--those I know, anyway--would love to see their taxes, in the form of vouchers going to pay for this kind of education. It's a pity the voucher movement doesn't seem to understand this.

Heterosexually yours,

Gen. JC Christian, patriot

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Embracing Our Corporate Stasi

Conservatism's First Article of Faith states:

Inasmuch as the profit motive is the most basic, most efficient, and most noble of all the conditions that combine to form the human character, we believe that the corporation is far better suited than government to meeting the needs of the People.

We've seen the truth of this born out many times from the swift response of FEMA contractors to the compassionate service provided by the pharmaceutical industry and the efficient health care management of this nation's insurers. But no private endeavor for the public good has been as gratifying to true patriots than the wiretapping of our citizenry by the telecoms.

They were there when our Our Leader needed them most, willing to shred the Bill of Rights in return for a tidy profit and the promise of even more lucrative contracts in the future. And how do we repay them (aside from the millions in dividends our treasury showered upon their stock holders)? Tragically, we do that by hemming and hawing over whether we'll give them immunity from being sued--heck some senators like Chris Dodd and congressmen like Jay Inslee even outright oppose it.

Congress goes back into session today. That means the FISA extension bill, with its courageous lets-give-the-telecoms-a-pass-for-trashing-the-Bill-of-Rights provision still intact, could come up for a vote again, any time. We have to be ready to call our senators and congresspeople when it does and tell them that we demand that they allow the corporations to violate our Constitutional rights without fear of being brought to justice.

We must act. The stakes are far too high. Do we want AT&T to undergo the same fate as Blackwater, who's operatives now have to take a split second to think before they slaughter random people in the streets. I think not.

Elsewhere:
Firedoglake and the ACLU always have the latest on FISA action.

Monday, February 18, 2008

My GOP

The worms of Hell put the fire of God into his little heart

Kendall Boutwell
The Church of the Lord Jesus Christ at Brookhaven

Dear Pastor Boutwell,

It ain't easy raising kids, but you've done a great job raising little Samuel, I don't think I've ever seen the fire of the Lord so strong in a boy of seven. Most boys that age are more excited about the latest additions to Pokemon than about the word of God. But not little Samuel, he'd rather be preaching about hellfire and brimstone than capturing another squirtle.

What is your secret? We know it's got to be about more than the Bible's talking donkeys. I mean, sure, talking donkeys hold a kid's imagination for a little while, but not enough to send them out on the road rebuking homosexuals. Something bigger, something that elicits more primal emotions, something that causes fear is needed to provide that kind of motivation. And no talking donkey's going to do that, not to a kid that age anyway, a grown man, sure--the thought of our donkey's telling tales on us gives me the shivers--but a kid that age don't know nothing about the sultry wiles of a she-donkey.

My guess is you got him with the worms. Am I right? Heck you can almost hear the terror in little Samuels voice as he preaches:

If you don’t repent you’re all going to hell. Like I said, worms’ll be eating, worms’ll be down there. Theys going be long worms.

From what I understand, the boy has been scared to death of Hell since he was a toddler. I suspect you must have caught him stealing a cookie or something and punished him by convincing him worms were going to eat him alive. Is that how you did it? Am I right?

But just how thick did you lay it on? How far did you go? Did you set that little toddler down and tell him all the gruesome details about how the maggots would eat his eyes first? Did you frighten him so badly he wet himself? Did you cause him to have nightmares? Are those nightmares his motivation for preaching today?

I hope you'll consider sharing the whole story with us. Perhaps you could write a book, or if book-learning isn't your thing, maybe a video. We'd all like to hear how you've brought God's love into your family.

Heterosexually yours,

Gen. JC. Christian, patriot

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Torture: It's Constitutional


Torture: It's Constitutional
Image © Austin Cline
Original Poster: National Archives
Click for full-sized Image


So we hear from the Bush administration that they don't really torture, and even if they did it wouldn't be torture if done in a time-sensitive situation, and anyway we shouldn't hamper our intelligence agencies by telling them that they can't torture (which they don't do in the first place, honest) because they may have to not-torture in some critical case in the future. Make sense? One question which doesn't get a lot of attention is whether "torture" is constitutional. Even if it is a violation of domestic law and international treaties, might it still be technically permitted under the United States Constitution?

Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia certainly seems to think that torturing people may not be unconstitutional, which is appropriate given the extent to which he himself tortures logic and law when trying to justify his various positions. In the current situation, he tries to justify torture by the argument that torturing to extract information would not be a form of "punishment" and therefore would not violate the constitutional prohibition against "cruel and unusual punishment."


It seems to me, you have to say, as unlikely as that is, it would be absurd to say that you, you, can, I don’t know, something under the fingernails, smack him in the face – it’d be absurd to say that you can’t do that. And once you acknowledge that, we’re into a different game. How close does the threat have to be, and how severe can the infliction of pain be? I don’t think these are easy questions at all, in either direction.

But I certainly know that you can’t come in, smugly and, and, uh, with great self-satisfaction and say, “Oh, it’s torture, and therefore, it’s, it’s, uh, no good.” You would not apply that in some real-life situations. It may not be a ticking bomb in Los Angeles, but it may be, “Where is this group that we know is plotting some very painful action against the United States? Where are they and what are they currently planning?"


So, how is this particular argument tortuous? For one thing, Scalia has in the past argued that "cruel and unusual punishment" only excludes those practices which the Constitution's authors would have disapproved of as "cruel and unusual." This means that the death penalty for any felony would be permitted, as would punishments like ear-notching or tarring & feathering.

Clarence Thomas, with whom Scalia tends to agree, has argued that "punishment" only applies to "judges, not jailers," and thus doesn't restrict what is done to prisoners during their incarceration. Justice Harry A. Blackmun pointed out that such a view would make the torture of inmates constitutional. This is the sort of result we can easily get with strict, narrow "originalist" readings of the Constitution.

Furthermore, the Eighth Amendment isn't the only one which restricts government activity when it comes to crime. The prohibition against self-incrimination should apply here, for example. Anyone being tortured for information presumably has, well, information — specifically, information about a crime. If they aren't personally involved in the commission of that crime, then they at least have material knowledge about the crime. The first is obviously a criminal act, but so is the second — if you have material knowledge of a crime and don't tell the police, you're complicit in that crime.

So, if the police torture someone in order to force information out of them, they are in effect coercing a confession about the person's own criminal activity. That's self-evidently a violation of the constitutional ban on self-incrimination. This is an important reason why police aren't allowed to torture suspects — aside, of course, from the gross immorality of the practice, which doesn't appear to concern Antonin Scalia at all.

All this suggests that Scalia may not really believe that the constitutional prohibition on "cruel and unusual punishment" would only ban torture as a form of punishment. I think he may have only offered that rationalization to make his argument appear more erudite and sophisticated than it really is. What it amounts to is "I can't seem to find a reason to ban torture based on a self-servingly narrow reading of just one amendment to the Constitution, so I guess it's OK."

Finally, we should take Scalia's advice about applying our questions to "real-life situations." I appreciate that he says this because so much time is wasted on hypothetical thought experiments like the "ticking time bomb" scenario which simply aren't ever going to happen. They may provide interesting information about our morality and decision-making process, but they are worthless as actual guides for action.

What are the real-life situations? We need only look at police work to get the broad outlines: lots of innocent people are questioned and detained while more than a few innocent people get put on trial and even convicted. So, if we are going to look at real life, then we have to take seriously the likelihood that we'd be torturing completely innocent people and more than a few people with only tangential knowledge of what we want to learn.

Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, whose patron saint must be Tomas de Torquemada, evidently regards it as "smug" to declare that the torture of innocent people is "no good." He also regards it as smug to think it is no good to torture people who may indeed be guilty of something, but who have not been convicted in any court of any wrongdoing for which they are to be tortured. He would, however, say it is "no good" to torture someone who has been found guilty by a legitimate court. This is what passes for intellectualism and sophistication among conservative jurists in America.

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Department of Book Reports 55: Primal Threat

Primal Threat, by Earl Emerson (Ballantine, $24.95) Zak Polanski is a Seattle Fireman, and we see him through traumatic car wrecks that shape his rescue efforts, causing him to be a bit too involved. He's the best in the department for extracting car crash victims, but the memories of earlier wrecks haunt him. He rescues the lovely Nadine, and has a short lived affair with her, unable to reconcile with her elite attitudes. When Zak confides his mother didn't really seek treatment for her second round of cancer (the first had bankrupted the family), Nadine exclaims "no-one dies in America for lack of health care, do they?"

Zak has led a group of fellow firemen and bikers to the trail to Salmon la Sac, to prepare for a bike marathon. The trails are closed for late summer fire danger, but the group decides to continue with the trip. Nadine's resentful ex-boyfriend and her brother have followed our bikers into the dry baked woods to harass the team. Quickly, resentments build, the pranks take on a lethal turn in the tinder dry forest. When one of the drunken bullies dies in a fall, it all turns deadly.

Out-numbered by the elite Mercer Island frat boys in over powered cars and SUVs, the bikers pedal for their very lives. The forecasted wild fires catch up with the firemen, who aren't trained to deal with anything other than a house fire, unless it is to get away from it. On the lowest gear on the steepest slope, one lick ahead of the flame.

I really raced through Primal Threat, I felt as if I needed to lean forward to help the bikers up the hill ahead of the flames.

Earl Emerson, himself a Lieutenant in the Seattle Fire Department, knows the world of Firefighting and the inner workings of the department hierarchies. Working the Central District has given him entry to some of Seattle's poorest and wealthiest homes. Increasingly, his novels have been taking on a social statement, this time he skewers the ultra-rich of Mercer Island and their presumptive entitlements. I'm seeing a trend in the current batch of thrillers being published this spring, strong social justice themes as opposed to generic crime sprees. It's a welcome change.

Signed copies of Primal Threat are available at Jackson Street Books and fine Independent Bookstores everywhere!

democommie™™™™®© will begin training later this season.

I hope everyone's gotten their March 1st weekend cleared so you'll be able to attend HAIRSTOCK 08: Saturday, March 1st, Jackson Street Books will be hosting a showing of the movie Hair at Central Cinema in honor of the General. Central Cinema is a dinner theater, with food and drinks brought to your table. The bistro opens at 6pm, and the movie shows at 7pm, and again at 9pm.
$5 Ticket at the door.
Here's your chance to party with J.C. Christian before booking your visit to the spatula man.

Friday, February 15, 2008

Chavez hates your comments because they are free

Sister Toldjah
Intellectual Giant

Dear Sister Toldjah,

I've always been a huge fan of your work. Each post you write serves as a testament to your unique intellectual abilities. Indeed, I'd go so far as to say that your keen analytical abilities rival even those of Adam Yoshida in his heyday.

Yesterday's valentine to the courageous GOP congressmen who walked out on the Tom Lantos memorial service was no exception. It was a pleasure to see your mind at work as you proclaimed that the Democrats had forced the Republicans to desecrate that sacred gathering. That's the kind of astute reasoning that's earned you your place as the poet-laureate of the tractor pull circuit.

Unfortunately, praise is not my main intent in writing this email. I'm here to alert you that the security of your blog has been compromised. I don't know if you saw it, but I responded to Leslie's comment to the post I mentioned above. In her comment, she noted that the defeat of the FISA extension was evidence that this "country is turning into a banana republic." I responded by writing:

Yes Leslie. We are becoming a banana republic. The defeat of the FISA extension burdens the Justice Department with the heavy yoke of the Bill of Rights. What's next? Are we going to witness the travesty of a restoration of habeas corpus?

I then hit the "say it!" button (which felt very hip and empowering) and saw that my comment had been posted. I refreshed the page again about twenty minutes later to see if anyone had responded. To my surprise, my comment was gone.

I know you wouldn't remove it, so obviously, Hugo Chavez must have hacked into your site and deleted it. Why Hugo Chavez? Well, who has a better reason? He hates your comments because they are free.

Heterosexually yours in a chaste and biblically appropriate kind of way,

Gen. JC Christian, patriot

And speaking of Adam Yoshida...



Here are a few of his greatest hits:

My life’s goal is to see the Democratic Party virtually obliterated and left as a rump of people like Stephanie Herseth who both mostly agree with us anyways and are easy on the eyes.

That’s the future of the Democratic Party: providing Republicans with a number of cute (but not that bright) comfort women.

I have often been asked to outline by vision for the American future. By now regular readers will be aware of the broad outlines of the solution that I advocate to the present problems of the nation but, perhaps, not of the ultimate goal. What do I envision for the nation, a century hence?

[...]

Naturally, many of those known to be living off of the taxpayers were prone to be challenged in duels. Dueling, a practice almost forgotten, was reintroduced in the third decade of the 21st Century, initially in inner-cities.

[...]

Modern duels were typically fought with swords or single-shot black power pistols. One could be challenged to a duel for any reason- and could refuse a challenge. However, a general prejudice had developed that any man who refused a duel was a probable homosexual and, therefore, refusals were generally rare...

Criminal punishments were generally swift and harsh. Petty criminals, especially young offenders, were often penalized by a public lashing. The method of execution prescribed by law in nearly every state (and by the Federal Government) was public hanging. This came about as a result of a popular view that, while the state had the right to execute people, the people ought to understand the terrible power wielded by the state. Despite (or, perhaps, because of) this, executions of murderers were extremely common- as were those of serial child molesters and rapists.

Please God, spare our nation from the oppressive yoke of the Bill of Rights

It's a sad day for America. Nancy Pelosi's decision to adjourn the House before voting on the Imperial Senate's FISA Extension (domestic wiretapping) bill means that the current law will expire on Saturday.

That leaves the heroic chekists of our State Security Apparatus in a heck of a bind. It forces them to partially comply with the Fourth Amendment to the Constitution:

The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.


I say "partially comply with the Fourth Amendment" because many would rightly argue that the actually language of the amendment requires warrants to be issued before people's conversations are spied upon, but such nay-sayers are missing an essential point. The old law, like all acts passed to protect us from the Brown, trumps the Bill of Rights, and it allows for warrants to be issued after the fact.

Regardless of when they are issued, warrants don't prepare themselves. Inquisitor General Alberto II will have no choice but to reassign some of the Justice Department's lawyers to prepare them. That means there will be fewer DOJ attorneys performing important duties like intimidating black voters, justifying torture, ending the soul-killing oppression of the white Christian male, and manufacturing eve-of-election indictments against Democratic candidates. I don't even want to think about how this decreased attention to our nation's most critical legal priorities will adversely impact our national well being, but I'm fear for this country.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Get Tight With Christ

Thomas Horn
Christian Persecution Expert

Dear Mr. Horn,

I've been following the good work you're doing to exposing cases of Christian persecution. Your job must be incredibly challenging. Ending discrimination against Christians is a tremendous undertaking, but the sheer immensity of the task doesn't seem to deter you in the least. You've been very successful. I'd even go so far as to say your efforts are second only to those of Our Leader and his Glorious Crusade against Islam.

Regrettably, this email is more than a simple congratulatory letter. I'm writing to alert you to a particularly heinous act of anti-Christian discrimination I recently discovered in Singapore.

For years, Topshop, a local market chain, has stocked its shelves with Christian products for the Singaporean faithful. That all ended recently when the government ordered the market to stop selling such items. Now, local Christians no longer have access to "Looking Good for Jesus" cosmetics. They are denied the opportunity to bathe in Our Savior's immaculate love and "Looking Good for Jesus Bubble Bath with Citrus Scent," and they can no longer "get tight with Christ" by applying a dab "Looking Good for Jesus Sparkle Cream (with lily scent)".

We can't let this assault on religious liberty stand. We have to fight back and your organization can help us with funding and volunteers.

I'm in contact with Miss Poppy Dixon, an American distributer of the "Looking Good for Jesus" cosmetics line. She's willing to sell us as many units as she can secure. And if that isn't enough, we can also buy all the Last Supper Lunch Boxes and Fuzzy Dayglo Velvet Jesus Banks we want from her. Then it's simply a matter of shipping it to the faithful in Singapore.

Heterosexually yours,

Gen. JC Christian, patriot

A helmet tip to Blue Gal

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Symbol and Essence: The Power of Naming



ANOTHER BLOG POST exclusive to MTV, as it is part of my Street Team 08 duties! This one delves more into one of my favorite paradigms, Symbol and Essence.

Words that came to me while thinking on our many forms of warring with the Other.

Crossposted at The Unapologetic Mexican, Culture Kitchen, and OpEdNews.

Torture: Now as American as Jim Crow

When a man who regularly whips himself and wears a strand of barbed wire tightly wound around his leg speaks out on torture, I think you have to listen to him. That's especially true if that man is also a Supreme Court Justice. That's why I was overjoyed to hear Justice Anthony Scalia weigh in on the torture issue.

I've always been very impressed with Justice Scalia's brilliant legal analysis. I particularly like how he bends, twists, and ignores precedent and hundreds of years of legal scholarship to make the law fit his own world view. He's like an artist who paints roses a bright shade of blue while loudly proclaiming that anyone who says roses are red must be a lunatic.

That's exactly what he did when he gathered up all the legal gravitas he could muster and declared that torture is constitutionally acceptable because it is not technically punishment in a legal sense. The prohibition against cruel and unusual punishment does not apply in his analysis. And he's right. Torture is an interrogation technique, not a sentence.

Sure, there will be those who will respond by saying that he's ignoring the Fifth Amendment right against self incrimination. I say screw them. They don't understand Justice Scalia's analytical technique. Ideological precepts are far more important than any silly little legal technicality like a protection granted under the Bill of Rights. Ideological precepts take precedence. Things are much simpler that way.

And that's the beauty of his analysis. It's simple. It's not limited to waterboarding. There are no 5th Amendment concerns. Carried out to its logical conclusion, it doesn't even require complicated formulas involving scenarios from the television show, 24, like those Inquisitor General Alberto II favors. Want to find out where the hippy bought the joint? Stake him spread eagle to the ground and kick him in the balls until he squeals. It's ok, if it's interrogation.

Elsewhere: John Cole leaps into the arms of treason by comparing Justice Scalia to Che.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

A Redesign for Cool Hand Luke

Luke Esser, heterosexual
Chair, Washington State Republican Committee

Dear Chairman Esser,

As a Washington State Republican, I'm embarrassed by our current website. Not only is it boring, it fails to tell the story of your efforts to make the Party a winning enterprise again.

Enclosed, you'll find an image of a redesign I'm proposing for the site. I think it does a much better job of showcasing what you and the Party are doing. I hope you like it.

Heterosexually yours,

Gen. JC Christian, patriot



Elsewhere:

McCain wins!

Counting is hard.

Really hard.

Goldstein on Chairman Esser's Heartland Values.

Monday, February 11, 2008

Seedbeds for Transnational Threats

Mike McConnell
Director of National Intelligence

Dear Director McConnell,

I think it must have been sometime back in 1983 when I first began worrying about the threat fantasy games pose to our national security. I recall stumbling upon a ring of Dungeon and Dragons enthusiasts and thinking, "If you substituted Soviet Speznatz commandos for these orcan warriors and a Marine guard unit for the elves and, then, recast the Harp of Elesius as the President's nuclear launch codes, this so-called "game" could be a Warsaw Pact training exercise for an assault on Camp David." Unfortunately, everyone laughed at me and made bets that I'd be the last of our group to actually kiss a real girl (a bet that will be resolved in the next year or two, I hope).

Now, after all these years, I don't look so crazy after all. I mean, hey, the Intelligence Advanced Research Projects Activity is now identifying national security threats in virtual worlds. A recent paper they issued even went so far as to conclude:

The virtual world is the next great frontier and in some respects is still very much a Wild West environment...

Unfortunately, what started out as a benign environment where people would congregate to share information or explore fantasy worlds is now offering the opportunity for religious/political extremists to recruit, rehearse, transfer money, and ultimately engage in information warfare or worse with impunity."


I'm here to tell you they have it right, sir. I believe I may have stumbled upon a terrorist cell in Second Life. Luckily, I snapped some pictures.

I first spotted the terrorists while I was doing my daily routine at the Ronald Reagan Shrine the SL Republicans erected at their headquarters. There I was, using the special animated prayer balls the SL GOP installed for worship, and all of a sudden, I noticed another person praying next to me. Upon close inspection, I saw that this figure looked like Jesus, but was dressed in ninja clothing, the preferred garb of terrorists everywhere. Obviously, I was praying next to a false messiah, a terrorist Jesus, the Antichrist.



After finishing his prayers he got up and joined a number of other terrorists, some in animal form.



The terrorists then placed a paper bag in front of the shrine and lit it on fire.



Luckily, an SL Republican official quickly arrived and confronted them, his sword drawn. That diverted the terrorists attention, so I snuck in behind them and stomped on the burning bag to extinguish it. It was then that I finally understood the sheer depth of their depravity. One of the dog terrorists had shat in the bag. My boots were covered with it.

I'm ashamed to admit that seeing my boots in such a state caused me to curse very loudly. That drew the attention of the terrorists back toward me, and they laughed. Yes, the bastards laughed at me, and they called me "shit boy" and made jokes about my personal hygiene. But, that's not the worst of it. By laughing at me, they were laughing at America, and democracy, and freedom. They were laughing because they hate us for being free.



They dispersed shortly after that, but I followed their leader, Terrorist Jesus, and his dog terrorist second in command to dig up a little more intel on them. That's how I learned that the Terrorist Jesus works as a bartender at a place called "Hotties."



I watched for a little over an hour as Terrorist Jesus poured free shot after free shot for his dog companion. After awhile, the dog became very drunk and Terrorist Jesus slow danced with her. That's how depraved these terrorists are.



I trust that my information will help you to round up and virtually waterboard these pixel-skinned bastards.

Heterosexually yours,

Gen. JC Christian, patriot

A helmet tip to Morning for her pics and No Blood for Hubris, Jeanne, Zeno, Any1, Michelle, Karen, Jac, Jillan (and am I missing anyone) who helped.

What Ron Paul supporters are packin'

Owning firearms is about the most patriotic act an American can perform. And when it comes to sheer patriotic firepower, no other group of citizens can match Ron Paul backers. As you can see in this thread (titled Who's Packin' What?) at the Ron Paul Supporters Forum, they shoot the hottest loads out of the largest, longest, most powerful and potent firearms you'll see anywhere:

xj0hnx:

For daily, Glock G26. Around the house Arsenal SLR-106U SBR, Yugoslavian M70AB2, and my .308 Savage Model 10 LE for reaching out and touching [sniping].

xd9fan:

For personal defense and law enforcement applications, the International Wound Ballistics Association advocates number 1 buckshot as being superior to all other buckshot sizes.

Gil:

Almost 30 years ago I sold all my guns in order to raise money for tuition. My resolution for 2008 was 1) buy some gold to hold for the impending collapse of our currency and 2) buy some guns while it is still legal in order to fulfill my constitutional responsibility (standing militia)...The shotgun I chose is a Remington 870 (12 ga) w/ 18" barrel, pump action, 6-shot mag plus one in the chamber (00 buckshot). You can buy kits for pistol grip, etc., but I think the 18" barrel really makes it useable even in a hallway.

asgardshill:

Magnum Research Desert Eagle .50. The weapon I choose to call "Painless", ironically because I've suffered two stress fractures in my left wrist after firing it on the range with too hot a load.

CopperheadNC:

Ruger Vaquero, which I open carry on a daily basis.
[...]
I need to get a more practical handgun for everyday carry purposes, I guess, but goddamn I love my single action cowboy gun.

Charles Wilson:

Folks do you remember Waco and Ruby Ridge? I would be very careful about listing my fire power.

gednick:

Just added to my collection: bought a Bersa Thunder .380 Concealed Carry today. It's the same as the regular Bersa Thunder but has rounded off sights, etc. so they don't snag on your clothing when drawing.

amy31416:

we have a Mossberg Persuader that's modified to look real freakin' scary.

Skeet:

I won't list my arsenal, but my favorite home defence weapons are: 12 gague mossberg (500) with folding stock for tight areas and turtling, and a Rossi 38 for room to room.