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Sunday, 9 January 2005
Channeling Andy Rooney
You know what really annoys me? It's DUMB ASSHOLES who don't know how to back into a parking space. I guess these people are just so cool or busy that they figure they'll need to be able to just drive straight away as soon as they get in their cars to leave. Can't spare those extra seven seconds of motor coordination on your way to the mall or LaKeisha's apartment? Is that why you do it? I don't know.

It's obvious that these geniuses are either such UNSKILLED IDIOTS or such INCONSIDERATE ASSHOLES that that they either don't know how to do it cleanly or don't care if they do. My money's on "all of the above."

Did someone tell these kind of people that they are saving themselves extra work by backing into parking spaces? I wouldn't doubt such a belief in others, having probably held the same one ---for about five seconds of idle thought while sitting in a back seat somewhere when I was eight.

If you can't pull it off and keep it between the lines, you FUCKING DOLT, don't even try. Not when the failure to do so ---coupled with the indifference such people have towards correcting it--- is the difference between my having a good parking space outside my own front door and having to suffer your self-centered stupidity by parking out of my line of sight.

(Note to garage-owners in decent middle-class neighborhoods: I'll be next door to you again soon enough but, in the meantime, go fuck yourselves.)


Posted by Toby Petzold at 9:23 PM CST | Post Comment | Permalink
Updated: Sunday, 9 January 2005 9:27 PM CST
Saturday, 8 January 2005
The Car Swarm People Are Voting
I think the Palestinians' polls have been open for a couple hours now. Abu Mazen is looking to ride the landslide to victory, but he's got too many cooks in the kitchen with him. If he tries to make nice with Sharon, Hamas and the other nutjobs will murder him. If he tries to do an impression of the Arafish, the IDF will send one across his bow. No assassination necessary, but a very communicative moment will suffice.

It's a meaningless election, as many of the Car Swarm People would tell you themselves, but I still hope for a big turnout. And I hope the Israelis make a big deal out of it and get Sharon to shake Mazen's hand and smile for the cameras. These people need to see that their decisions have consequences ---and not always just bad ones.

The idea is to get from the appearance of democratic rule to its actual practice. There are hopeful signs here and there. Assad may be getting the message with respect to his border with Iraq. Mubarak is wishing aloud for full participation in the vote in Iraq. And the Deadline is holding firm. I wish Sistani would come out and finally play a hand for once, but that might take the mystique off his brow. Who knows? Our men and women are doing the Lord's work each and every day. But come hell or high water, the Middle East will be changed. I say for the better ---and why not?


Posted by Toby Petzold at 11:50 PM CST | Post Comment | Permalink
Friday, 7 January 2005
The Thousand-Yard Stare
Courtesy of Blackfive read this great story about a Texas boy named Herbert B. Hancock who is now credited with the longest confirmed kill shot on a terrorist in Iraq.

AR RAMADI, Iraq (Jan. 02, 2005) -- Seen through a twenty-power spot scope, terrorists scrambled to deliver another mortar round into the tube. Across the Euphrates River from a concealed rooftop, the Marine sniper breathed gently and then squeezed a few pounds of pressure to the delicate trigger of the M40A3 sniper rifle in his grasp.

The rifle's crack froze the booming Fallujah battle like a photograph. As he moved the bolt back to load another round of 7.62mm ammunition, the sniper's spotter confirmed the terrorist went down from the shot mere seconds before the next crack of the rifle dropped another.
One down and thousands to go.

"From the information we have, our chief scout sniper has the longest confirmed kill in Iraq so far," said Capt. Shayne McGinty, weapons platoon commander for "Bravo" Co. "In Fallujah there were some bad guys firing mortars at us and he took them out from more than 1,000 yards."

During the battle for the war-torn city, 1/23 Marine scout snipers demonstrated with patience, fearless initiative and wits that well-trained Marines could be some of the deadliest weapons in the world.

"You really don't have a threat here until it presents itself," said Sgt. Herbert B. Hancock, chief scout sniper, 1/23, and a 35-year-old police officer from Bryan, Texas, whose specialized training and skill helped save the lives of his fellow Marines during the battle. "In Fallujah we really didn't have that problem because it seemed like everybody was shooting at us. If they fired at us we just dropped them."
Outstanding work, gentlemen. Your country is proud of you.


Posted by Toby Petzold at 11:37 PM CST | Post Comment | View Comments (2) | Permalink
Off to Kill Some Americans
Maybe in the carnage of the past few weeks ---whether in Iraq or elsewhere--- I did not make myself aware of a very important fact about the murder of our troops and contractors in Mosul a few days before Christmas. This, according to Stephen Schwartz:

ON December 21, a terrorist blew himself up in the U.S. military mess hall in Mosul, in northern Iraq. Twenty-two people were killed, including U.S. soldiers and contractors.

And now comes big news: The perpetrator was the oldest son of a diplomat from the kingdom of Saudi Arabia, our alleged ally in the War on Terror.

On Monday, the Saudi-owned daily Asharq Al-Awsat identified the butcher responsible: 20-year old Ahmad Sayyid Ahmad al-Ghamdi, a Saudi medical student.

The bomber acted as a member of Ansar al-Sunnah (Volunteers of Sunni Islam), one of the most violent terror groups in Iraq, and an al Qaeda ally.

The name "al-Ghamdi" should ring bells; the family is large, and three of its members were involved in the 9/11 assault.

The Saudi daily, and Western media, identified the Mosul bomber, and even said they had spoken with his father. But no one has mentioned who the father is: Sayyid al-Ghamdi, former head of the Saudi diplomatic mission in Sudan, a country ruled by an Islamist regime that once played host to Osama bin Laden himself.
Before the day is done, there shall be a reckoning all over the Muslim world. That is the one thing that will justify us.


Posted by Toby Petzold at 10:56 PM CST | Post Comment | View Comments (1) | Permalink
A Snoutful of Citrusy Goodness
Mood:  down
Have I mentioned lately that automatic room deodorizer dispensers are the work of the Devil? No? Well, they are.


Posted by Toby Petzold at 10:09 PM CST | Post Comment | Permalink
Inexcusable
Via The Left Coaster, here's a story about the Bush Administration paying black conservative commentator Armstrong Williams almost a quarter of a million dollars to shill for them. Specifically, Williams was paid to promote the No Child Left Behind Act on his TV show and in his newspaper columns.

Williams said Thursday he understands that critics could find the arrangement unethical, but "I wanted to do it because it's something I believe in."
That's outrageous. As Steve Soto observed:

No Armstrong, if you did it because you believe in it, you would have done it without shaking down the taxpayers for it. You did it because you are a conservative who values money above all else. Perhaps you can spout for us how many African Americans have been helped by the passage of NCLB, and why we should ignore the fraud behind this law that took place in W's Texas schools.
Despite Soto's weird implication that it's just conservatives who value money, I wholeheartedly agree with him on this. If Williams is such a great believer in the NCLB, he shouldn't require a Jesse Jackson-style retainer for his work in promoting it. It's inexcusable.


Posted by Toby Petzold at 8:54 PM CST | Post Comment | Permalink
Professor Greyhawk's Got a Test for You
Be sure to go here at The Mudville Gazette and take a test from Greyhawk on your general knowledge of the Scandal of Abu Ghraib. It may be a real eye-opener for some of you shithooks.

For my money, the most important one to get right is No. 6:

The Army suppressed the story of Abu Ghraib until the 60 Minutes broadcast.

True or False
I'll help you out: it's false. But lots of anti-military Leftists are convinced it's true. Why's that? Because they've lost their minds.


Posted by Toby Petzold at 7:46 PM CST | Post Comment | Permalink
Glug, Glug, Glurg...
Over at Balloon Juice, there's some trenchant analysis of why Ted Kennedy should never be the one to discuss water torture in public. As he said to Alberto Gonzales during yesterday's grandstanding (emphasis added):

KENNEDY: Well, just as an attorney, as a human being, I would have thought that if there were recommendations that were so blatantly and flagrantly over the line in terms of torture, that you might have recognized them. I mean, it certainly appears to me that water boarding, with all its descriptions about drowning someone to that kind of a point, would come awfully close to getting over the border, and that you'd be able to at least say today, There were some that were recommended or suggested on that, but I certainly wouldn't have had a part of that, as a human being.
To which our man adds:

Ted Kennedy's deep thoughts on simulated drowning- too bad Mary Jo Kopechne wasn't a suspected terrorist. With Teddy K's vice-like grip on morality, she would be enjoying her 64th year of life on this planet today. Of course, maybe he is learning- this is 'drowning someone to a point,' a sense of finesse that previously eluded Teddy Chappaquiddick.
Why don't these prick bastards understand that the Geneva Conventions don't apply to terrorists? If you were to actually take jihadis at their word, dying and suffering for the sake of Islam is a certain path to Paradise, so what do they care? If suffocating or burning these savages' nads off brings us closer to the information we need to end their terrorism, then so be it.

We are, as Gonzales had to remind South Carolina Senator Lindsey Graham, "nothing like our enemies." If we sink to their level, we know ourselves well enough to find the way back up.

CORRECTION: Gonzales' actual words to Graham were: "I reject your suggestion that we are becoming like our enemy. We are nothing compared to our enemy."


Posted by Toby Petzold at 6:10 PM CST | Post Comment | View Comments (3) | Permalink
Updated: Friday, 7 January 2005 6:33 PM CST
Wednesday, 5 January 2005
We're Still Waiting, Courageous Dan
The guys at the Power Line completely bitch-slap Corey Pein of the Columbia Journalism Review over his ridiculous article defending Dan Rather and the "fake, but accurate" Killian Forgeries. Read theirs first.

And, just in case you forgot what a total load of horseshit Bill Burkett's story was, John Hinderaker sums it up nicely:

[...]Pein fails to address obvious problems in the 60 Minutes story. Astonishingly, he tries to shore up Bill Burkett's credibility, quoting someone who described Burkett as "honest and forthright." This might, I suppose, carry some weight with readers who don't know that Burkett never served in the Texas Air National Guard; doesn't know President Bush from Adam; has a longstanding grievance against the Texas National Guard (Army) because of medical benefits he was denied; has suffered a series of what he describes as mental breakdowns, and suffered another mental breakdown while being interviewed by USA Today after the Memogate scandal broke; told a bizarre and obviously false story about the origin of the CBS documents--he got a call from a mystery woman named Lucy Ramirez, who told him to go to the Texas Livestock Show; he went to the show, didn't see Ms. Ramirez, but was approached by a man whom he'd never seen before; the man handed him an envelope and walked away; in the envelope were the National Guard documents; he took them home, made copies, burned the originals--of course, what a natural thing to do--and then presented the copies to CBS.
Why is it that so many people can't bring themselves to acknowledge that Rather and CBS News lied to the American people? Lied. Not accidentally misled (because they were misled), but lied. I think it's probably attributable to the trust that CBS News has built up over the decades. They have authority, even now. But in the new world of getting your ass fact-checked in real time and worldwide, that authority has unquestionably been diminished.

Good.


Posted by Toby Petzold at 6:37 AM CST | Post Comment | View Comments (2) | Permalink
Illegitimate
Courtesy of Real Clear Politics, here's a piece from yesterday's Seattle Post-Intelligencer by David E. Johnson on the stolen governorship in Washington state.

If you don't win the election on the first count -- demand a recount and litigate until you get the result you want (or the U.S. Supreme Court says enough of this foolishness).

That has become the Democrats new mantra as seen in the past week's certification of Christine Gregoire as governor of Washington following three counts of the ballot; two of which she lost.

The third, a manual recount with dubious ballots suddenly discovered in heavily Democratic King County that were not counted previously gave her the election. Now we must stop counting ballots or contesting irregularities, cry the Democrats because they might lose again.
It's a righteously angry column. Check it out.


Posted by Toby Petzold at 5:59 AM CST | Post Comment | Permalink
I'm Not Gonna Say It
Now Playing: "Winter" by Tori Amos
According to terrorism expert Rohan Gunaratna, the recent tsunami in Southeast Asia might have put the damper down on Islamist terrorism in that region. At least for a while.

Several hundred people were killed this past year in southern Thailand in the festering insurgency between Islamic separatists and the Thai military. And Aceh, the hardest hit area in Indonesia, is the home of GAM, a separatist group that has been waging a sporadic conflict with the Jakarta government.

It was precisely in these areas that the devastation was worst. Some of it, says Gunaratna, took a toll on the terrorist and insurgent movements, who lost both fighters and infrastructure when the waves crashed on shore.

"This is a golden opportunity for the United States," says Gunaratna.
Yes, well, we aim to please. Nothing like a massive natural disaster to bring people over to Uncle Sam's side.


Posted by Toby Petzold at 5:14 AM CST | Post Comment | Permalink
Tuesday, 4 January 2005
Martian Chronicles
Be sure to tune in to your local PBS station tonight to watch NOVA's Welcome to Mars ---a documentary recounting the past year of the fantastic Mars rovers.

NASA's twin Mars rovers Spirit and Opportunity have yielded volumes of new data about the red planet in the last year - the least of which involves the planet's history of water. But the rovers have also amazed their human handlers with their longevity, lasting nearly four times their initial 90-day mission despite some early glitches that popped up after landing.
Man-made robots rolling around on another planet. Does it get better than that?


Posted by Toby Petzold at 10:28 AM CST | Post Comment | Permalink
Monday, 3 January 2005
Eleemosynary
Ha, ha. Did I actually hear Bush the Elder use the term eleemosynary in a joint interview with President Clinton earlier today?

There's only a handful of people who could get away with that.

George H.W. Bush isn't one of them.


Posted by Toby Petzold at 11:43 PM CST | Post Comment | Permalink
Sunday, 2 January 2005
Much Bollywood
One of my very favorite rituals when I lived in Los Angeles was to tune in on late Saturday mornings to one of the local channels there and watch Bollywood music videos. A great substitute, if you're looking for one, for psychedelic entertainment: outrageous colors and sounds and notions. I think what I was watching were actually clips from the very prolific Indian movie scene; it seems like most of the popular movies from the Subcontinent are little more than a series of musical or dance numbers on the way to some sort of sappy romantic finish.

Anyway, I was watching 60 Minutes tonight and Bob Simon was interviewing the one person whose face I could most definitely remember from my Saturday afternoon video-watching. Her name is Aishwarya Rai and she is absolutely stunning. They say she's the biggest thing in India ---and I have no doubt of it.

You know...Aishwarya's even prettier than SABINE EHRENFELD, THE HOT BABE FROM THE OVERSTOCK.COM ADS.

If that's possible.


Posted by Toby Petzold at 11:12 PM CST | Post Comment | Permalink
Saturday, 1 January 2005
One for the Ages
Mood:  celebratory
What a great Rose Bowl! My prediction was wrong on the particulars, but not, happily, on the bottom line.

Vince Young may be the most exciting QB on two legs. Forget the arm and just let him run.

Wheeee!


Posted by Toby Petzold at 11:49 PM CST | Post Comment | Permalink
Friday, 31 December 2004
35-13
My prediction for tomorrow's Rose Bowl is a dominating performance by the UT Longhorns over the Wolverines of Michigan, 35-13.

If we get even a National Co-Championship out of it, I will be surprised.

I wish everyone a healthy and happy New Year.

Please don't drink and drive.


Posted by Toby Petzold at 11:23 PM CST | Post Comment | Permalink
Thursday, 30 December 2004
Clare Short, Cunt
Mood:  don't ask
Try this one on (emphasis added):

United States President George Bush was tonight accused of trying to undermine the United Nations by setting up a rival coalition to coordinate relief following the Asian tsunami disaster.

The president has announced that the US, Japan, India and Australia would coordinate the world's response.

But former International Development Secretary Clare Short said that role should be left to the UN.
Yes. Remember this woman? She's the British cabinet secretary who dramatically resigned over Blair's decision to go to war for Iraq. She believes more in the UN than in her own country, which makes her a traitor by any standard.

"I think this initiative from America to set up four countries claiming to coordinate sounds like yet another attempt to undermine the UN when it is the best system we have got and the one that needs building up," she said.

"Only really the UN can do that job," she told BBC Radio Four's PM programme.

"It is the only body that has the moral authority. But it can only do it well if it is backed up by the authority of the great powers."
What else to say but that Short is an ignorant cunt? The UN has "moral authority"? Get the fuck out of my life.


Posted by Toby Petzold at 5:56 PM CST | Post Comment | View Comments (2) | Permalink
Updated: Thursday, 30 December 2004 6:31 PM CST
Wednesday, 29 December 2004
Jerry Orbach, RIP
Mood:  blue
Now Playing: the theme from "Law & Order"
I just heard on MSNBC that Jerry Orbach has died. I am really going to miss him. Old timers who know more about the theater and cinema than me will remember Orbach for lots of things, but I just know him from his work as Lenny Briscoe on Law & Order ---one of the ultimate smart-ass cops in all of TV history. As far as I'm concerned, he was the heart of that show.

Dang.


Posted by Toby Petzold at 9:41 AM CST | Post Comment | Permalink
Osama's Tin Ear
Read this column by Juan Cole, professor of history at the University of Michigan (home of the soon-to-be-defeated Wolverines):

In declaring "infidels" all who vote under the "infidel" interim constitution negotiated by Iraqi politicians with US civil administrator Paul Bremer last winter, Bin Laden is seeking to counter the decree of grand Ayatollah Ali Sistani that Iraqis must vote in the upcoming elections or they will be consigned to hell. Bin Laden is arguing, according to the Aljazeera.net in Arabic, that the interim constitution that is the framework for elections is artificial and pagan ("jahili", pertaining to the Age of Ignorance before Islam) because it does not recognize Islam as the sole source of law.

Bin Laden's intervention in Iraq was hamfisted and clumsy, and will benefit the United States and the Shiites enormously. Most Iraqi Muslims, Sunni or Shiite, dislike the Wahhabi branch of Islam prevalent in Saudi Arabia, and with which Bin Laden is associated. Nationalistic Iraqis will object to a foreigner interfering in their national affairs.
It isn't going to matter to the anti-war Left, but the ties between international Islamofascist terrorism and the Saddamites are now unmistakable. Osama has cast his lot with Zarqawi ---a murderer who was in Iraq long before we showed up and who must have had at least Saddam's tacit approval to be there, being a major league Kurd-killer.

Osama's definitely off his game. He's antagonizing Sistani, giving support to the Zarqawiites, and is reduced to issuing pointless fatwas from a cave somewhere. It's going to be sweet when the sight of his rotten corpse is broadcast to the world.


Posted by Toby Petzold at 4:56 AM CST | Post Comment | Permalink
Juden Verboten
Here's something to be disgusted by:

A 150-member Israeli aid delegation canceled its mission to Sri Lanka yesterday after the government in Colombo refused to accept the Israeli team, Israel Defense Forces officials said.

The plane was due to touch down in Colombo for a few hours and return directly to Israel. The Sri Lankan government, however, declined the offer, saying it only needed humanitarian supplies at this time.
Yep. Pride goeth before another ten thousand bloated corpses.

No, no. That's not it. Not pride. Uh, what's it called again?

Ahh, yes: Jew-hatred.

UPDATE: I saw something about the Vatican's stupid remarks on the subject of Israel's offer of aid yesterday, but forgot to post on it.

The Vatican newspaper has denounced a decision by the Israeli army to deny emergency help to disaster victims in Sri Lanka.

Calling for "a radical and dramatic change of perspective" among people "too often preoccupied with making war,"
L'Osservatore Romano singled out Israeli military leaders for declining a request for emergency medical help. The Vatican paper observed that in what "should be a time for unconditional solidarity," some world leaders seem incapable of escaping a "small-minded approach that restricts their horizons."
What a bunch of ill-informed shitheads. Don't wait for an apology, though. As Ed at the Captain's Quarters said:

Oops! I guess the Vatican doesn't take its mission to provide the Truth to the world too seriously these days. The blogosphere had the Sri Lanka/Israel story hours ago, another short-sighted and pointless example of Islamic anti-Semitism that hurts themselves more than it could ever hurt the Jews bearing the aid the Sri Lankans need. Instead of spending a few minutes getting their story straight, the Vatican mouthpiece wasted little time jumping to a conclusion that has to force Catholics around the world to question the Vatican's true attitude towards Israel and Jews.
It's a real embarrassment, frankly.


Posted by Toby Petzold at 4:14 AM CST | Post Comment | View Comments (1) | Permalink
Updated: Wednesday, 29 December 2004 5:21 AM CST

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