I may be wrong, but that's my goddamn job

One of the great things about reading right-wing blogs, and by "great" I mean "hilariously depressing", is how completely unafraid they are to be wrong. I wonder sometimes if this isn't a strength -- an advantage the right has over the left, that as long as they can briefly alarm people into doing what they want, they don't really give a shit if they're proven flagrantly wrong later on. Whereas the left is concerned with being right, so they spend a lot of time flailing around, making sure that Ts are crossed and Is are dotted and mistakes have been avoided, and all of the sudden, whoops the GOP won another election and we're invading Liberia or something.

Anyway, Little Green Footballs, which I don't read very often anymore because there's only so many times I can stand to read how Arabs are subhuman murderous filth who should be wiped out with nuclear weapons, is a pretty funny testament to this utterly shameless willingness to be wrong and not really give a shit. Scrolling through a week's worth of posts, you see:

- a post about a now-proven-bogus prison video of Saddam Hussein demanding that someone's ears be chopped off

- a post about a now-proven-bogus photograph of a peacefully bustling street in downtown Baghdad (this was put up by a GOP congressional candidate to 'prove' that there's plenty of good news in Iraq the media are ignoring; it was almost immediately established that the photo was actually of a suburb of Istanbul, Turkey)

- a post about "concrete" terror threats to the Israeli election by Islamic Jihad, which were sure to take hundreds of Jewish lives and would be ignored or blamed on Israeli oppression by the media (there were zero terror attacks before, during or after the Israeli elections, and the only arrests made were of hardcore right-wing Jewish settler groups)

There's something insanely principled about being so fucking dogmatic that you just leave all your myriad errors up there for the world to see. It's a testament to how little any of his fans care about right or wrong (as opposed to ideologically correct or incorrect) that Chuck Johnson's readership continues to grow no matter how many times he has to pull his head out of his ass.


Hey, speaking of assholes...

Yesterday, there was some discussion of the type of asshole who always predicates their incredibly racist comments with "Hey, I'm not a racist, but...". Special mention was made of the racist who claims it's really the darkies, with their ethnic pride and their special darkie-power movements, who are the REAL racists.

Well, along comes Michelle Malkin, who compensates for her own non-whiteness by being almost as racist as Ann Coulter, to prove the point. Let's watch!

Few things make liberals more uncomfortable than being confronted with the racism of politically correct minorities.

It's true! Whenever a black person tells me he thinks the Jews are a bunch of parasites, I just squirm around and cry until someone gives me a latte and a Jane Fonda hippie patchouli brie snob blah blah blah.

Two weeks ago, I wrote about Autum Ashante, the precocious 7-year-old black nationalist poet, who said white people are "devils and they should be gone."

Yes, Michelle, we all remember how you had an aneurysm over the evil seven-year-old poet. Well done, thou good and faithful servant.

If this daughter of a Nation of Islam activist father had instead been an Aryan supremacist child of a Klan activist, she'd still be all over the network news and pages of pop culture magazines (as a pair of white nationalist teen pop singers, Lamb and Lynx Gaede, have been since last fall).

If they'd really been "all over the network news and pages of pop culture magazines", would you really need to explain who they were? The Gaedes are in the same category as Autim Ashante: a freakshow act.

But with rare exceptions, nobody wanted to touch Autum's spoon-fed hatred with a 10-foot-pole. That would be, you know, "intolerant." We have to "respect diversity."

Note the use of quote marks, as if anyone had actually said those things.

Well, this weekend, militant racism from another protected minority group was on full display. But you wouldn't know it from press accounts that whitewashed or buried the protesters' virulent anti-American hatred.

Let's remember a few phrases there: "militant racism", "protected minority group" and "virulent anti-American hatred".

An estimated 500,000 to 2 million people, untold numbers of them here illegally, took to the streets of Los Angeles to protest strict immigration enforcement and demand blanket amnesty for border violators, visa overstayers, deportation fugitives, immigration document fraud artists and other lawbreakers.

The "untold numbers of them here illegally" is nice, because it implies that, oh, say, 95% of them could have been illegal immigrants. When, in fact, the number being "untold" (which is a sinister way of saying 'unknown'), it could be 50%. Or 10%. Or less than 1%. Also, the protesters were generally asking not for blanket amnesty for a laundry list of crimes, but rather immigration reform -- a very important distinction, which Malkin and her ilk deliberately muddy in order to stir up anti-immigrant fervor (of the type that would have kept her parents out of the country 40 years ago). The argument is not that immigrants should be free to commit endless crimes, but that some of their violations be decriminalized, particularly if they are economically productive members of the society.

Mexican flags and signs advocating ethnic separatism and supremacy filled the landscape.

Examples? None.

Demonstrators gleefully defaced posters of President Bush and urged supporters to "Stop the Nazis!"

I guess this would be the "virulent anti-American hatred", because disliking the president is the same as disliking the country. Even though, you know, the whole point of the demonstration was to ensure more people could come to this country and become citizens of it.

Los Angeles talk show host Tammy Bruce reported that protesters burned American flags and waved placards of the North American continent with America crossed out.

Well! If Los Angeles talk show host Tammy Bruce reported it, it must be true! Just like if Michelle Malkin says that protestors advocated ethnic supremacy, that must be true also. There's no need to provide any evidence!

One of the largest, boldest banners visible from aerial shots of the rally read: "THIS IS STOLEN LAND." Others blared: "CHICANO POWER" and "BROWN IS BEAUTIFUL." (Can you imagine the uproar if someone had come to the rally holding up a sign reading "WHITE IS BEAUTIFUL"?)

And if there's a Black Miss America, why isn't it okay to have a White Miss America? GAAAAAAAH.

Students walked out of classrooms all across Southern California chanting, "Latinos, stand up!" Young people raised their fists in defiance, clothed in T-shirts bearing radical leftist guerrilla Che Guevara's face and Aztlan emblems.

The horror! The horror! Young people raising their fists, and students walking out of their classrooms! Society, clearly, is doomed.

Nor are these sovereignty-obliterating grievances confined to the wacky West Coast. In Milwaukee, Wis., marchers carried signs that read: "If you think I'm 'illegal' because I'm a Mexican[,] learn the true history because I'm in my HOMELAND."

This is an attempt, I guess, by Michelle to illustrate the wacky "ethnic supremacy" of these crazy darkies, but here her ignorance betrays her: what the signs indicate is the fact that, although people (like, say, Michelle Malkin) often categorize all Latinos as immigrants (legal or illegal), over 75% of Latinos in America are in fact natural-born citizens who have lived here all their lives. Thus, this is their homeland.

Open-borders sympathizers in the press strained to look the other way. As Slate writer Mickey Kaus, who attended the L.A. demonstration, noted, the Los Angeles Times buried any mention of the presence of Mexican flags in its initial "propagandistic" report -- and then eliminated any reference to them at all. Cracks Kaus: "I used to write this sort of press-releasey 'news' account when my college paper assigned me to 'cover' anti-war demonstrations that I'd helped organize! . . . The Times' effort is filled with representative quotes from participants, without a note of dissent."

Well, I guess if you can trust anyone, other than radio talk show Tammy Bruce and Michelle Malkin herself, it's dissimulating right-wing convert Mickey "The Toad" Kaus. After all, he himself, by his own account, used to make up stories when he was a journalist, so you can believe him when he says he smells a made-up story!

Apologists are quick to argue that Latino supremacists are just a small fringe faction of the pro-illegal immigration movement (never mind that their ranks include former and current Hispanic politicians from L.A. Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa to former California Democratic gubernatorial candidate Cruz Bustamante).

This is about the 859th time Malkin uses the phrase "ethnic supremacist" or "Latino supremacist", without a shred of evidence that they are actually supremacists. Here's how it works, Michelle: an ethnic supremacist -- let's say, oh, a WHITE supremacist -- believes certain things. He believes (a) whites are better than any other race; (b) other races are inferior and subhuman and should at the least be driven out of the country or at worst slaughtered; and (c) only members of his race have the full complements of rights and privileges that his countrymen are due, and said rights should only be extended to members of his race. Has Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa ever said "Latinos are better than white people"? Has Cruz Bustamante ever called for the expulsion of the Jews from California's borders? Did the LA protestors argue that only Latinos have the right to be American citizens, and that all non-Latinos should be driven out, imprisoned, or murdered? If so, then, pending your provision of a single scrap of evidence that this is the case, you're right: they're ethnic supremacists. If not, then you are in fact lying, or at best deliberately ignorant of what "supremacist" means. You are intentionally blurring people asking for EQUAL civil rights with people demanding EXCLUSIVE POSSESSION of civil rights. And you know what? This makes you a big fat fucking racist.


Boy, you can't leave Town Hall alone for a minute

I swear, I go away for one day and the pundit class soils itself in public. I guess I just can't have nice things.

Leading off, the always-reliable Dennis "My Son Has a Friend Who Isn't a Raving Anti-Semite" Prager pens a piece about how Muslims are worse than Nazis and commies put together. Setting the tone for his column with the cooly rational claim that the only people who could possibly disagree with his claim are "the willfully naive, America-haters, Jew-haters and those afraid to confront evil", he goes on to spell out the reasons why Islam is more of a threat than Nazism or the global communist conspiracy:

1. No one really believed in communism anyway, and the only reason anyone ever supported it was because they were afraid of the secret police. A nice dodge, this one, ignoring the dull, depressing reality that no authoritarian regime can survive without at least the partial consent of its people, and it lets him ignore the fact that the reason communism ever got a foothold in the first place is because of its wildfire popularity among working people who were tired of getting shit on by capitalists.

2. There are more Muslims than there were Nazis or communists. By this logic, of course, Republicans are more dangerous than the Manson Family.

3. Muslims, unlike Nazis and communists, do not fear death. This is a popular cavil with the Arab-bashing right; they cite suicide bombings (which, of course are neither unique to nor invented by Muslims) and the like to "prove" that Islamic fundamentalists don't fear death. They also like to toss around the phrase "death cult", like Allah is equatable to Cthulhu, and among the hardcore there's a fun cavil that Muslim women don't love their children, which is why they send them out to throw rocks at tanks, knowing they'll get killed by Israeli soldiers and they can get sympathy from misguided liberals. This last is a pretty grotesque claim; aside from the bizarre blame-shifting -- where the villain becomes the Palestinian mother who 'allows' her son to throw rocks at a tank instead of the Israeli soldier who murders a child for the crime of rock-throwing -- it recalls statements made by American racists (I've heard it from the mouths of members of my own family) that black women didn't love their children, because they let them go out and face the cops in Birmingham, knowing Bull Connor's dogs would maul them and they could be made to look like martyrs for the TV cameras. It's a pretty nice way to alienize your enemy: they aren't like us. They don't feel pain; they don't fear death. They're not, after all, human like we are. Makes it easier to kill them, knowing they don't mind.

Moving on, humorless Walter Peck impersonator Brent Bozell shows why he should never, ever write anything that deals with comedy, as he attacks Comedy Central for going too far. He refers to the South Park Scientology flap even though it's been thoroughly discredited, and claims that only Christianity is acceptable to mock on this network of evil. Citing as unfunny a number of funny gags, he then excoriates Drawn Together for its portrayal of Christians as humorless fire-and-brimstone scolds, which is pretty funny, given that Bozell's attack on the show pretty well establishes him as, well, a humorless fire-and-brimstone scold. The best part of the piece, though, is where, in a dismally failed attempt to pretend he is not the most humorless man at Town Hall, Brent discusses what kind of comedy DOES work for him: "giant of the genre" Don Rickles, and Jackie Mason, "one of the funniest men in America". Apparently, comics born after the Great Depression are just too edgy for our man Brent.

Finally, Rebecca Hagelin brings us a boringly typical attack on Grand Theft Auto: filled with distortions and misstatements, utterly hysterical (it's a "murder simulator"!), and containing a big fat plug for her book. The highlight, again, comes early on, when she says this:

“Life is like a video game. Everyone has to die sometime.”

If you spent part of your youth playing 'Pac-Man' and 'Space Invaders', such a statement must seem bizarre. Video games were...well, games -- innocent diversions that did nothing worse than eat up dotted lines and too much of our allowances. A waste of time? Perhaps. But nobody got hurt.

HA HA HA HA, yeah, nobody got hurt in 'Space Invaders', all right, Bec! No one except the thousands of marauding aliens who you blew to smithereens with your laser cannon! Or the entire population of Earth which perished when the aliens landed! Yes, who can forget the golden age of non-violent, innocent, harmless video games? I believe it lasted from the introduction of 'Pong' in 1972 until one second later when someone invented violent, conflict-oriented games which have totally dominated the field continually ever since then. Good times!


Clown College

Over at Town Hall, Mike S. Adams keeps raising the bar for stupid, this time by penning the whitest of white-guy critiques of Kanye West (who will apparently be performing at his college over Spring Break). Proving what a circumspect fellow is he, Adams waits until the end of the article to say "fo shizzle". Curiously, though, Adams, current regency chair of the Bitchdowne School and the most woman-hating of all the Town Hall misogynists, specifically attacks West for woman-hating; in fact, he mentions that his university had the gall to invite Kanye and Ludacris after two women were murdered on campus. I think the text he was going for was "how can you say the school is a safe place for women and then bring in two people who say 'bitch'?", but the subtext is pretty clear: "how can you say the school is a safe place for white women and then bring in these two savage negroes?"

Meanwhile, overworked Town Hall intern Daniel Son writes a piece about how 24 is totally awesome and wouldn't it be great if life was really like that? Strangely, the word 'torture' doesn't appear in his review, but it's fairly obvious that he's pining for the day that President Bush can put the coals to some treasonous raghead.

Finally, Atari enthusiast and professional offspring Jonah Goldberg, after mocking Helen Thomas, who "all but called President Bush a lying warmonger who invaded Iraq for no legitimate reason" (uh...what's the outrageous part of that accusation?), goes on to write a column in which every sentence containing the words "we know" is a lie, a distortion or a deliberate misstatement.


I don't get it

President George W. Bush, March 23, 2006: "The war on terror requires some clear doctrine. And one of the doctrines that I laid out was, if you harbor a terrorist, you're equally as guilty as the terrorist. And the first time that doctrine was really challenged was in Afghanistan. I guess the Taliban didn't believe us -- or me. And so we acted. Twenty-five million people are now free."

CNN.com, March 22, 2006: Afghan Christian Convert Could Be Executed.

Now, okay. Didn't we invade Afghanistan? Didn't we liberate them from the oppressive religious dictatorship of the Taliban? Wasn't the whole point of these fucking wars to keep this shit from happening? And as far as the Bush administration's toadies claiming that they want to respect the sovereignty of the Afghan government, since when have we given a shit about that? We didn't respect the Taliban's sovereignty. We didn't respect Iraq's sovereignty, either -- we invaded, overthrew their government, put in our own, rewrote their constitution, and enforced it by military strength until we were ready to let them vote on it. It's the same thing we did in Germany and Japan; it's S.O.P.

And currently, we have close to 25,000 troops in Afghanistan. Still. Add in the German, Italian, and Canadian troops, it's over 30,000. They can't save this one fucker's life? What are they doing over there? Why do we even have troops in the country if they're defending a regime where you can be executed for picking the wrong religion? This is ridiculous. If you fought a war, and a couple of years later, the country you fought is still putting people to death for defying the state religion, you lost the fucking war, and you need to stop going around saying you won and all the people over there are free.

This illustrates more than probably anything else what a horrific botch-job the Bush foreign policy has been. I mean, in 1949, you didn't see the goddamn Nazis in charge of every part of Germany except Berlin. In 1949, you didn't see the Gestapo still sending Jews to concentration camps and the American occupation forces shrugging their shoulders and saying "Hey, we'd love to help, but we have to respect their sovereignty; we don't want to put the president in an awkward position." If this guy gets waxed, then Bush claiming we won in Afghanistan is just another big fucking lie.


Baghdad Year Three

The massive looting being carried out by American companies in Iraq continues to not be a story on front pages anywhere in America, despite general agreement that in monetary terms, it is by far the most massive fraud in either nation's history. If you walk into a bank and steal five million dollars at gunpoint, you make headlines for a month; if your company defraudes American taxpayers out of billions for three years, no one seems to care. Pretty good system, that!

Anyway, the latest news you haven't read is that a (surprise!) Halliburton subsidiary has not only botched the delivery of clean water to civilians and US troops, but has threatened its own employees when they tried to go public with the information. Let's take a closer look, because the odds are you're much more likely to read about this on LiveJournal than you are to hear about it on the news or in the paper.

WASHINGTON - The Pentagon's official watchdog will investigate allegations by Halliburton Co. water experts that their company endangered U.S. troops in Iraq by failing to provide safe shower and laundry water.

Support our troops!

The most serious allegation came from the company's water treatment manager in the war zone whose internal report said troops and civilians in Iraq were left vulnerable to "mass sickness or death."

Hey, but nobody died, so what's the big deal, right?

A former Halliburton water expert who found contamination at the Ar Ramadi base a year ago said he was told by superiors not to advise the military or senior company officials of his discovery.

They've got other things to worry about, like staying alive long enough to collect their bonus checks.

Byron Dorgan, who has held hearings on the water issue, said the risk to U.S. forces in Iraq "should not include behavior by contractors who cut corners and whose incompetence fails to manage a program that is supposed to deliver safe water supplies."

Obviously, "Comrade" Dorgan is not familiar with the concept of free enterprise.

The internal company report, obtained by The Associated Press, was written last May by Wil Granger, the "Theatre Water Quality Manager" for Halliburton's KBR subsidiary. The report cited confusion between the military and the company over their water treatment responsibilities, a lack of training and the absence of records that might have provided warnings of contamination.

But, you know, other than THAT, they're doing a great job!

The report said company water treatment units "had been on site for a considerable amount of time without assembly" due to resistance from a KBR foreman, who believed if they had been operating, "it would expose his weak knowledge base."

So, in other words, they had machinery to purify and treat the water, but they didn't bother putting them together, so that no one would realize how incompetent they were. Dick Cheney's America, ladies and gentlemen.

Granger wrote that the problems were not confined to Ar Ramadi. "Countrywide, all camps suffer to some extent from all or some of the deficiencies noted," Granger wrote in the May 2005 report.

Well, at least they're not just singling out one place. Bright side! Bright side!

Halliburton said it has "worked closely with the Army to develop standards and take action to ensure that the water provided in Iraq is safe and of the highest quality possible."

It doesn't matter who it's from: you can smell the aroma of bullshit PR talk a mile away.

In an interview, [KBR water expert Ben] Carter said he resigned after KBR supervisors at the base "told me to stop e-mailing" company officials outside the base and warned that informing the military "was none of my concern."

Hey, you're a water expert, not an informing-your-superiors-of-massive-incompetence-and-corruption expert!

He said he threatened to sue if company officials did not let him be examined to determine whether he suffered medical problems from exposure to the contaminated water. Granger's report confirmed that KBR officials at Ar Ramadi tried to keep the contamination from senior company officials. "The event that was submitted in a report to local camp management should have been classified as a recordable occurrence and communicated to senior management in a timely manner," Granger wrote. "The primary awareness to this event came through threat of domestic litigation."

That's the free market in action, see? It's the genius of the system! It's entirely self-regulating, and if a company does something like, say, provide poison water to soldiers, informed consumers will be able to eventually do something by threatening a lawsuit! Maybe!

Granger's report cited several countrywide problems.

Remember that: KBR is providing the water for the entire nation of Iraq. If you ever want to know what America will look like if the libertarian/Randroid/free-market right get their way and all industry is deregulated and privatized, look to Iraq: here's what you're facing when the water supply is placed entirely in private hands with no government oversight.

Lack of training: "Theatrewide, there is no formalized training for anyone at any level in concerns to water operations."

NO formalized training for ANYONE at ANY level. Thank you and good night.

Confusion between KBR and military officials over their respective roles: Each assumed the other would chlorinate the water at Ar Ramadi for any uses that would require the treatment.

Well, the important thing isn't who did it, but that it got done. Oh, wait.

Inadequate or nonexistent records that could have caught problems in advance: Little or no documentation was kept on water inventories, safety stand-downs, audits of water quality, deliveries, inspections and logs showing alterations or modifications to water systems.

I work for a small private company that provides parts for auto and small engine manufacturers, and we have to document everything, down to the minutest level. This is a company charged with providing safe water for an entire country AND several occupying armies, and they are keeping "little or no documentation" on pretty much every important aspect of the operation. But hey, at least they're getting a multibillion-dollar no-bid contract to do it!

Relying on employees the company identified as semiskilled labor and paid as unskilled workers.

See also the fact that, while Iraqis are unemployed in massive numbers, American firms are importing labor from the Phillipines, because it's cheaper. I'm sure that's not fuelling the insurgency at all, that foreign invaders are bringing in workers from halfway around the world and leaving the local men jobless, hopeless and pissed off.

Remember, this is just ONE INSTANCE of what is a systemic problem in the whole country. This drives me crazier than anything -- than the insurgency, than the lack of planning, than even the widespread casualties. Why is it that when American corporations are collecting billions of dollars to do absolutely nothing, it's not making a ripple in the headlines? Must be that liberal media again.


Because, okay, here's what I'm saying

WASHINGTON - Undaunted by the difficult war in Iraq, President Bush reaffirmed his strike-first policy against terrorists and enemy nations on Thursday and said Iran may pose the biggest challenge for America.

In a 49-page national security report, the president said diplomacy is the U.S. preference in halting the spread of nuclear and other heinous weapons.

"If necessary, however, under long-standing principles of self defense, we do not rule out the use of force before attacks occur — even if uncertainty remains as to the time and place of the enemy's attack," Bush wrote.

Today's assignment: rephrase this asinine statement so that it retains the same content, but is less cloaked in self-serving bullshit. Example:

"If necessary, however, tradition dictates that I am allowed to defend myself by stabbing you in the eye with an ice pick, even if you have not attacked me and I don't know when or where you might do so in theory."



The Overseas Office of Arrested Development

Boy, I can't believe the Saddam Hussein trial isn't being broadcast over here, after we fought a war to catch the guy. Even the defendant knows it's high comedy:

BAGHDAD, Iraq - Saddam Hussein testified Wednesday for the first time at his trial, insisting he was Iraq's leader and praising the insurgency, prompting the chief judge to close the courtroom to the public because he said Saddam was making political speeches.

"What pains me most is what I heard recently about something that aims to harm our people," Saddam said. "My conscience tells me that the great people of Iraq have nothing to do with these acts."

Chief judge Raouf Abdel-Rahman interrupted Saddam. "You are being tried in a criminal case. Stop your political speech," Abdel-Rahman said angrily.

"I am the head of state," Saddam replied.

"You used to be a head of state. You are a defendant now," Abdel-Rahman barked at Saddam.


"Had it not been for politics I wouldn't be here," Saddam replied.


"What happened in the last days is bad," he said, referring to the Feb. 22 bombing of the Askariya shrine in the city of Samarra. "You will live in darkness and rivers of blood for no reason." He praised the insurgency, saying, "In my eyes, you are the resistance to the American invasion."

Abdel-Rahman replied, "You are being tried in a criminal case for killing innocent people, not because of your conflict with America."

Saddam responded, "What about the innocent people who are dying in Baghdad? I am talking to the Iraqi people."

During his testimony, Saddam called the proceedings a "comedy."

Well, if that's not a cue, I don't know what is...


GEORGE W. BUSH: Hey, fellas, you been watching this Saddam trial?

DICK CHENEY: I've got a country to run, George. I don't have time to watch Court TV.

PAUL WOLFOWITZ: What were you doing watching that, sir? It doesn't really seem like your thing.

GWB: Aw, the dish went out on Air Force One. All I could get was al-Jazeera and the Golf Channel.

DC: So why...

GWB: They were showing a Nancy Lopez retrospective. Anyway, I caught a bit of it before we touched down, and I gotta say, I wonder if he's makin' us look bad up there.

DC: I wouldn't worry about it, George. That's not even being broadcast in the US. No one's watching it but a bunch of Europeans.

GWB: Really? What are we showing instead? That Moose-owie trial? The 20th hijacker fella?

PW: Actually, we're now going with Ramzi bin al-Shibh as the 20th hijacker now.

DC: I thought it was Mohammed al-Q'atani.

PW: Him too. We like to keep a few in reserve for when the Zogby polls come out.

GWB: Well, how many damn 20th hijackers are there?

DC: The same number as there are al-Q'aeda second-in-commands. Is this going somewhere, George? It's already almost 3PM, and I still need to stop at the gun shop and the liquor store.

GWB: Well, I was just wondering, what exactly are we trying Saddam for, anyway?

PW: We're not trying him. The Iraqi people are trying him.

GWB: But it's really us, right?

DC: Right.

GWB: Anyway, the prosecutor guy says it's for killing innocent people, but he's saying it's for politics.

PW: Oh, that's not true, sir. This war was always about ousting that monster Saddam.

DC: And freedom for the Iraqi people.

PW: And spreading democracy in the middle east.

DC: And going after terrorist groups like al-Q'aeda.

PW: And weapons of mass destruction.

DC: And furthering the American agenda into a new century.

PW: And, uh...boy, I feel like I'm forgetting one.

DC: Lowering taxes?

PW: No, I don't think that's it. Do you have the wallet card?

GWB: Well, look, never mind all that. I thought he was on trial for trying to kill my dad.

DC: Uh...no, George. That's...that's not why.

GWB: Well, they're gonna find him guilty in this one, right?

DC: If they want their water to stay on, you bet they are.

GWB: Can we try him for wanting to kill my dad after that?

DC: They can only hang him once, George.

GWB: Are you sure? Can we check on that? Because in Texas...

Town Hall gun-down

Unfortunately, I don't have the energy or lack of a penetrating headache for a long-form takedown of anyone today, despite a plethora of rich targets, but I don't want to leave anyone blue-balled, so here's a brief rundown of what you could read over at Town Hall if you were even more of a masochist than I am:

Caroline Glick: In order to get you to read my impenetrable and dust-dull analysis of local Israeli politics, I'm throwing a totally arbitrary pop-culture reference in the title.

Michelle Malkin: The coloreds are getting uppity again. This they call art?

Burt Prelutsky: Poor people are losers and no one should help them, because they are a bunch of bums who could get jobs if they really wanted them.


I hates the lay-teez

A Doug "NO GURLS ALOUD" Giles follow-up: in case you missed his previous blast about how God intends for you to raise your sons, I can give you a precis without your having to actually read the piece by simply excerpting some of the language:

"nancy-boy", "metrosexual", "feminized", "sissy", "dandy", "castrated", "Sally", "stemless", "effete", "poodle", "pantywaists", "tidy", "prissy".

This is what our "pusillanimous pomo" society will do to your boys if you don't take them out shark-hunting once in a while.

Interestingly, Doug reveals that he doesn't have any sons, but rather daughters -- or, as he puts it, "two alpha teen-aged females". Never one for armchair psychologizing, I'll refrain from any speculation about whether his hyper-macho demeanor is some sort of defense mechanism at his inability to produce a boy-child, but I will ask this: what message do you think a teenage girl gets from her father when he constantly refers to her gender in terms of being weak, marginalize, sissified, ineffectual, peurile, helpless, lame, feeble, submissive, and insubstantial? A PRETTY GOOD ONE I BET!

Good thing we have our priorities straight

Lately, the Bitchdowne School of conservative opinionating has been making lots of noise. The school is so named for the fact that any time a woman suggests that the status of women in our society is still somewhat inferior and that perhaps we still have work to do in this arena, they rise en masse to scream "Bitch, down!" Any statement of feminism is 'shrill', 'strident', 'man-hating' and worst of all, 'unnecessary', because as is the case with race relations in America, everything is fine now, and so shut up.

The leading theorist of the Bitchdowne School is Carolingian criminal justice professor Mike S. Adams, who finds time between preparing lesson plans for the prison guards of tomorrow to froth ceaselessly about those horrible rabid shrews of the left who just can't stand his virile ability to protect the balls of our country from their steel-gloved busting. Adams is a genetic freak who literally cannot keep his mouth shut, the sort of horrible bore who follows you around at parties trying to convince you that you're not really uninterested in his endless fulminations against women; you've just been brainwashed by liberal feminist political correctness into thinking that you find him insufferably dull. The intellectual equivalent of a "NO FAT CHICKS" t-shirt, Adams is not our target today: it's his #1 Scold Brother, right-wing man, and ideological doppelganger, Doug Giles.

Giles' gimmick is a sort of bullying Christianity, as if Jesus' entire teachings consisted of throwing rocks at Pilate's window and calling the Saducees a bunch of pussies. The host of something called "Clash Radio", which despite the title is not songs by and interviews with the left-wing punk godfathers but rather endless exhortations to keep a Bible tucked under your big swollen testicles, Giles posits himself and his followers as hypermacho, un-neutered "bulldogs" lifting a potent leg over the effete, faggy, feminized "poodles" of the left. Some of us aspire to be human beings, but Giles has little advice to offer in that regard, apparently thinking that opposable thumbs are only good for making a fist with which to rabbit-punch homos, college professors, and other assorted sissies. Let's take a look at his latest.

Raising boys that feminists will hate: Part two

Some people, misguided poodles that they are, would want to raise boys who are decent, intelligent, respectful, civilized and humane, but Doug sees right through that homo nonsense and prefers that we focus on making sure that someday, our sons will piss off feminists. This sort of ridiculous adolescent spite is all over the right wing, where the priority seems not to solve problems, come up with ideas, or say something intelligent or insightful, but rather to annoy some theoretical thin-skinned liberal just for the sake of doing it. (Here in Chicago, billboards for WIND, the right-wing talk station, trumpet not their intelligent programming, unique perspective or stellar guests, but rather the fact that "liberals hate it".) The "part two" is a nice touch; this sort of third-rate thinker loves to put their bottom-shelf thoughts in series, thinking it lends them intellectual weight rather than being a pedant's cover for having no new ideas. See also Dennis Prager's interminable series on the innate superiority of Judeo-Christian morality (and his new one, "What is a Jew?" -- answer: someone who agrees with me) and Mike S. Adams' "Why I Don't Take Feminists Seriously" and "Life and How To Live It" (answer: like a grade-D professor at a grade-C school whose colleagues are constantly trying to get him fired) series.

Masculine values are vanishing from within our nation faster than a Chimichanga dipped in motor oil would zip through your digestive tract. A myopic Cyclops can see that.

Giles fancies this sort of punchy joke, thinking it makes him sound witty instead of like the kind of failed preacher you get at corporate retreats for Slough-based paper merchants. But who can argue with his premise? Aside from sports, business, war, consumerism, pornography, and the other aspects of life which totally dominate our entire culture, masculine values are nowhere to be found.

Look, if you’re a girl or a girlie man, well then . . . this is your day, Girlfriend. So, get on with your bad self.

Now that we've gotten the mockery of black slang and the equation of gays with women (and both with weakness) out of the way, let's move on to the issue at hand.

The neckerchief wearing “progressives” are ruining their new manicures working hard to have our nation Nancified.

Neckerchief? Who exactly does Doug picture as the exemplar of progressive politics, Rip Taylor? Note again the "nancified" line, again equating liberalism with weakness and thus with feminization and homosexuality. REAL men are conservatives.

Make no mistake about it: misandry (man hatred) is now the dominating motif of postmodernism.

It's axiomatic that if someone starts a sentence with "make no mistake", he's about to make a major mistake; case in point.

The day has come when you, as a parent, are going to have to be defiant for your son’s masculine rights and upbringing.

The right seems awfully concerned lately with rights that are unfamiliar to me, such as the right to celebrate Christmas and these so-called "masculine rights". However, the erosion under their hand-picked candidate of actual rights enumerated in the Constitution doesn't seem to bother them very much.

Pink Floyd’s “Hey, teacher, leave these kids alone” line from “Another Brick in The Wall” takes on a whole new meaning in this new millennium as far as sons are concerned.

I bet Doug Giles and Roger Waters could have endless fun sitting around blaming everything bad that ever happened to them on those horrible emasculating bitches.

One great source for rebellious inspiration comes from the Bible. The scripture is a great font for prissy, culture-defying fodder.

That's true; if you're looking for a blueprint for oppressing women, you need look no further than the Bible. Or, hey, the Q'uran!

In the scripture you see the men being men, and the demons being scared.

Scaring demons, of course, being a priority in our society today. Actually, I can't think of too many instances of demons being scared in the Bible, but I'm no Radio Clash host, so maybe I misremember. I do remember Isaac being pretty scared when God ordered his father Abraham to slit his throat; that's just the sort of lesson that can teach your son to be a real man, so I'm surprised Doug doesn't mention it.

What does God want His kid with the gonads to be?

I hate to break it to Doug, but women also have gonads. They're called ovaries. Doug seems to think "gonad" means "testicle", but unfortunately, he is mistaken; perhaps he should consult a college professor, like Mike S. Adams.

Well, here are six of the characteristics: a kid who is comfortable in the wild, who’s ready to rule, is a savvy steward, is a dragon slayer, pursues wisdom and reflects the image of God.

The increased concentration of the population in urban areas and the lack of availability of dragons to slay are only two of the challenges facing non-fruity children these days.

Having covered the necessity of the wild in your kids’ upbringing in last week’s column, let’s check out God’s desire to make him a conqueror.

What is best in life? To crush your enemies, see them driven before you, and to hear the lamentation of the women. That is good.

Yaweh didn’t construct Adam to be a passive clod, some indolent handout addict who abnegates his responsibility to other people or institutes; but rather, Adam was to be a bold and imaginative chief.

God, in other words, didn't want us to collect welfare.

Look, according to the scripture, your son is a natural born leader who will naturally want to control. It is only, and I mean only, when boys are cowed by abusive authority, Ritalined out of their brains or indoctrinated to believe this God-given behavior is bad that they turn into the followers, the veritable sheeples of stupid cultural morays, folding to high pressure peers and ideological BS.

But...aren't the abusive authorities also wanting to control? Why is it okay for your son to be a domineering, oppressive bull-stud, but wrong for the authorities to do it? Aren't they just exercising the alpha-male tough-guy values their parents taught them on the advice of the Doug Giles of previous generations?

Also, I hate to correct Doug again, but the word he wants after "cultural" is not "morays", but "mores". They're pronounced the same, so I can see how he would get a little mixed up, but a moray is a type of eel, and has no culture that a human being could possibly understand.

Therefore, parent, your job is twofold: 1) Unleash the leadership beast within your boy and 2) Superintend it to make sure it doesn’t get weird; rather ensure it is used for the purpose of justice, truth, provision and protection.

So, you know, encourage his fascistic tendencies, but only to a point.

Take God’s lead and show your son how to exercise dominion rather than how to get in touch with his feminine side.

Couldn't you do both? You know, like by being a top?

Maw and Paw, stand against the swill of society that seeks to erase this grand masculine trait from your little treasure and teach that kid how to be a constructive conqueror.

Because if history has taught us anything, it's that conquerers are always constructive! Thanks, Doug Giles. God bless you, and all hail Bitchdowne!


Okay, one last thing for today

In an interview one week ago, straight-shootin' Don Rumsfeld made this curious claim, responding to a question about President Bush's ever-dwindling approval ratings:

I think the biggest problem we've got in the country is people don't study history any more. People who go to school in high schools and colleges, they tend to study current events and call it history. There's never been a popular war. Franklin Roosevelt was one of the most hated people in the country and he was President of the United States."

Um...what? Roosevelt was one of the most popular presidents in American history. The only people who hated him were fat-cat capitalists like, you know, the ones whose grandchildren make up the modern G.O.P. His approval rating during WWII was never lower than 66%, and even before the war it only once dipped below 50% (to 48%). His disapproval rating was never higher than 43%, even after a GOP campaign to make him out as a pocket dictator who might as well be the spawn of Satan, so disregarding was he of the precious principle of free enterprise on which our nation was apparently founded. His average approval rating before the war was 57%, during the war 63%, and throughout the course of his presidency (four terms and 96 APAR/Gallup polls) 63%. Compare this to, say, the wildly if inexplicably popular President Reagan -- it's not even close. I don't know what Rumsfeld is taking about. But then again, I never do.


...Pat Buchanan warns against the cultural warfare that demonizes a religion held by over a billion people, accuses European and American conservatives of deliberately making things worse and ignoring moderate Muslims, and blasts neoconservatives for their contempt for dialogue and debate.

That's right: Pat Buchanan says all this.

Maybe not so surprising, though, seeing as his own attempt to bring cultural warfare to the national stage backfired so spectacularly that it lost the White House for the GOP for 8 years and essentially ended his own political career.


What you're missing if you don't pay close attention to this amazing individual

Conservative dingleberry David Horowitz appears on an MSNBC talk show to call Citizens for Legitimate Government founder Michael Rectenwald pro-terrorist Nazi scum. Host Contessa Brewer mildly scolds Horowitz for namecalling, and Horowitz SLAMS BACK WITH A ZINGER!

HOROWITZ: You have no respect for disagreement, like all totalitarians --

RECTENWALD: I'm sorry, you're the one that wants to get rid of difference...

HOROWITZ: This man is a communist. He is a pro-terrorist, and he is a menace.

RECTENWALD: We need to protect unpopularity. That's what we need to protect in this country.

BREWER: All right. OK, here's what we're not going to do, is to call guests names on the air.

RECTENWALD: Thank you very much.

BREWER: That's not going to happen.

HOROWITZ: Yeah, all right, he called me a right-winger!

(NOTE: At no point in the interview did Rectenwald or anyone call the blatantly right-wing Horowitz, who has written several books complaining about how right-wingers like himself are excluded voices on campus, a right-winger. But hey, IF THEY HAD, calling a self-identified right-wing conservative a right-winger is certainly as bad as calling someone a totalitarian communist pro-terrorist menace, right?)

It's those damn dirty unions

The latest opposition research meme to come out of the GOP swamp concerns the Dubai Ports World deal. When someone (someone like Lou Dobbs, for example, or someone unlike John Edwards) comes out and asks, well, how come we can't just have American companies run American ports?, the answer is a variation on this: no American company is interested in doing so, because of the outrageously high union salaries they'd have to pay. And besides, as Linda Chavez writes in a recent column, aren't these unions -- who are, after all, in the hip pocket of Mafia gangsters -- John Fund even called them "the real-world On the Waterfront", a comment at which Lou Dobbs had the good sense to sneer derisively) -- just as big a threat as al-Q'aeda?

Well...where to begin?

First, do American companies get a special exemption from doing what is necessary to protect the country that allows them to exist? Since when does "Eh, I'd like to help American security, but it would be too expensive" get you off the hook? Is this the "sacrifice" Bush keeps talking about? Apparently so, since he wants to fight the whole war on the cheap; why should American companies have to pay when the American government and the American upper class don't have to either? And, frankly, this isn't 1954, when On the Waterfront was made. Even then, the idea that fifty cents of every dockfront dollar ended up in the pocket of a Sicilian was overstanded, but since then, the Mafia is a shell of its former self, and unions have been devastated by 25+ years of Reaganomics. The people making the most money off corruption in the shipping industry are the big corporations who run the shipping industry, and no one's suggesting an investigation of them. And even if you bought for a second this whole fantasy notion that the ports are under the thumb of Mafiosi and union gangsters, of course they're not as big a threat as al-Q'aeda! Mobsters tend to be conservative, capitalist, and even a bit absurdly patriotic. They're not the ones who would let through uranium-smuggling Islamofascists; that would be the underpaid, unconcerned non-union employees with nothing to lose who work for giant, faceless conglomerates with the solitary goal of cutting corners to shore up the bottom line.


"Jew athletes at Munich had it coming"

I don't have the energy to do one of my customary takedowns of Ann "Fuck You, Nigger" Coulter today; it's cruel to expect me to read her in detail when I'm still running a 247-degree fever. Instead I will simply direct you to her yearly Oscar column and let you judge for yourself whether she is really more akin to jolly-jokester satirists like Lenny Bruce (as she likes to pretend) or slightly less funny propagandists like, oh, say, Julius Streicher.

Enjoy! As if that were possible.



Around here, we try and keep our mockery of right-wing bloviators on a level playing field. As a gentleman and a satirist, I prefer only to attack people more powerful than myself, or at least people who aren't totally powerless, who could at least theoretically defend themselves against the scorn I heap upon them. Thus I will openly mock a James Lileks, a Rush Limbaugh, a Cal Thomas, but not the streetcorner crank who thinks Al Gore is a weather-controlling Soviet clone, or the poor deluded schlep who calls in to the Michael Savage show to complain about how the homos made him lose his job at the Brown's Chicken And Pasta.

However, sometimes, if someone adds a dollop of creamy egregiousness to their steaming chili bowl of helpless, pathetic insanity, I cannot resist, especially if that person is one of the most famous of pundits. Thus, my "no picking on the retarded" rule finds an exception in such worthies as Oliver North, Ben Shapiro, and, of course, Peggy Noonan. Or as she is known around these parts, "Peggy Fucking Noonan".

For years now, the former G.O.P. speechwriter and author of such golden phrases as "a thousand points of light", "read my lips: no new taxes" and "a kinder, gentler nation", having blossomed from a hard-nosed, mildly disillusioned Reagan Democrat into, essentially, the Republican version of Blanche DuBois, has made a career out of elevating her 'oh my goodness!' sensibilities to a sort of perverse artform. She specializes in weeping about how liberals made her ashamed of loving John Wayne and writing post-mortems of dead Democrats (or, in the case of Hillary Clinton, live ones) where they talk about how humiliated they are about members of their party who haven't had the good taste to keel over and become dignified corpses. (Famously, when Paul Wellstone was less than a week in the grave, she wrote his supporters -- who had the temerity to discuss liberal politics at the funeral of a liberal politician -- a supposed 'open letter' from Wellstone in Heaven. Although she'd never had a decent thing to say about the man when he was alive, Peggy found him a useful ally when dead, and through his cold dead lips made the claim that Ghost Wellstone was ashamed of his followers for such a tasteless display; she even reanimated the cadavers of other dead liberals like John Adams and JFK to tsk-tsk at the Democrats of Minnesota. In one of her books, she even has Eleanor Roosevelt breach the great veil to condemn Hillary Clinton for being, uh, Hillary Clinton, I guess.)

It's become next to impossible to read Peggy Noonan without hearing her words in the voice of the woman on King of the Hill who, when her husband does his dirty sinful business, just thinks of those pretty flowers until it's all over. Her ludicrous 'we must protect the blossom of American womanhood I see myself as' have become even more deranged since George W. Bush, who she absurdly posits as the inheritor of John F. Kennedy's legacy, became president; she wrote a book about him called, in an access of pitiably naked desire, A Heart, A Cross, And a Flag. Peggy, in her own precious way, is crazier than Andrea Dworkin ever was; the feminist firebrand was merely so consumed by her beliefs that everything, including rational thought and linear logic, was second to buttressing them; while Peggy doesn't really believe in anything other than the idea that she is a pretty little flower and society must do something to keep her in bloom.

But this month, her wilting-hothouse-lilac sensibilties took a turn from the crazy into the help-mommy-I'm-scared. She started off last week complaining how she was humiliated and belittled by the gruff (read: dykey), incomprehensible (read: black) women of the TSA when she was picked for a random airport search recently, and that her humiliation was compounded when she was seated on the plane next to a "British gentleman" who likewise had his precious dignity assaulted when he was forced to leave behind an $800 cigarette lighter he was forbidden to bring on the plane. The fact that all this airline security is the fault of panicky hysterics like herself who demanded tougher standards after 9/11; the fact that her English chap is probably the only person left in the world who doesn't know that you can't bring lighters on a plane anymore; the fact that a true gentleman doesn't talk about the price of things -- all this was ignored by Peggy as she wept real tears at the fact that a fragile soul like herself, someone who surely deserves better, was treated like so much working-class chattel.

This week, she followed up that column with an expansion of its themes. Boy, did she ever.

Peggy Noonan, Fading Rose of American Ladyhood


I want to revise and extend my remarks, as they say, from last week's column on airport security. The reaction was great, but I have two reasons to amend. The first is that I didn't really get to the heart of what is for me most offensive about airport security, and the second is that that thing, the most offensive part, connects to a larger, and I think more painful, fact of our culture.


Here is that larger fact: America has become creepy for women who think of themselves as ladies.


It has in fact become assaultive.


I start with a dictionary definition, from American Heritage


not that anyone needs it because everyone knows what a lady is.


It's a kind of natural knowledge.


I would add that a lady need not be stuffy, scolding, stiff.


A lady is a woman who projects the stature of life.


These definitions are incomplete but serviceable--I invite better ones--but keep them in mind as I try to draw a fuller picture of what it was like to be taken aside at an airport last week for what is currently known as further screening and was generally understood 50 years ago to be second-degree sexual assault.


I was directed, shoeless, into the little pen with the black plastic swinging door.


A stranger approached, a tall woman with burnt-orange hair. She looked in her 40s. She was muscular, her biceps straining against a tight Transportation Security Administration T-shirt. She carried her wand like a billy club. She began her instructions: Face your baggage. Feet in the footmarks. Arms out. Fully out. Legs apart. Apart. I'm patting you down. It was like a 1950s women's prison movie.


Beeps and bops, her pointer and middle fingers patting for explosives under the back of my brassiere; the wand on and over my body, more beeps, more pats. The she walked wordlessly away. I looked around, slowly put down my arms, rearranged my body.


I experienced the search not only as an invasion of privacy, which it was, but as a denial or lowering of that delicate thing, dignity. The dignity of a woman, of a lady, of a person with a right not to be manhandled or to be, or to feel, molested.


There aren't many middle-aged women who fly who haven't experienced something very much like what I've described.


Women take the searches worse than men, and become angrier. But then they would, for they are not only discomforted and delayed, as the men. There is also the edge of violation.


Are the women who do the searches wicked, cruel? No, they're trying to make a living and go with the flow of modernity. They're doing what they've been taught. They've been led to approach things in a certain way, first by our society and then by their bosses.


They're doing what they've been trained to do by modern government security experts who don't have to bother themselves with thoughts like, Is this sort of a bad thing to do to a person who is a lady?


By, that is, slobs with clipboards who have also been raised in the current culture.


I did experience it as to some degree violative of my dignity as a person. An adult. A woman. A lady.


And I have been experiencing a lot of things in this way for a while now. Have you?


I experience it when I'm almost strip-searched at airports.


I experience it when I listen to popular music, if that's what we call it.


Let me tell you what I say, in my mind, after things like this--the symposium, the commercials, and so forth.


I think, We are embarrassing the angels.


Imagine for a moment that angels exist, that they are pure spirits of virtue and light, that they care about us and for us and are among us, unseen, in the airport security line, in the room where we watch TV, at the symposium of great minds.


"You are embarrassing the angels." This is what I intend to say for the next 40 days whenever I see someone who is hurting the culture, hurting human dignity, denying the stature of a human being.


I mean to say it with belief, with an eye to instruction, but also pointedly, uncompromisingly. As a lady would.


All invited to join in.