Submission in Remission Now Playing: "Crazy Love" by Poco
On CNN this morning, Wolf Blitzer's concerned that Islam may become the basis of the Iraqi constitution. Really? I find it interesting that liberals could be so explicit in stating this concern. Aren't they supposed to be in favor of any tradition that isn't Judeo-Christian ---just by default?
Nevertheless, if the liberal/anti-war crowd's defense of Islam were food, you'd go starving trying to find anyone of that persuasion to explain why Islam shouldn't be changed or destroyed beyond recognition. They can't do it because they know that Islamic law and culture is inimical to their own status as whatever they themselves might be: gay, Christian, outspoken, a drinker, American, female, etc.
The only thing these people do know is that we are wrong to want to change the primary ideology of the Middle East, which is submission to the totalitarian.
Anyway, let the Iraqis do what they will with their constitution. I would think that the very nature of real democracy in a modern society would be strong enough to transform sharia: often, publicly, and to great effect.
Necrophiliac Obsessions (Exhibit B) Now Playing: "Bron-Y-Aur Stomp" by Led Zeppelin
Charles Johnson brings us a post from some mad hatter at The Daily Kos who ---well--- there's no explaining it. Read and retch:
We are making errors with references to Cindy Sheehan.
What are we trying to accomplish with promoting her?
Emphasizing her sacrifice.
Emphasizing her stating truth to power.
Emphasizing her plain speaking, clear statements.
Relate her vigil over her dead son to universal archtypes of all vigils over dead children killed by dictatorial rulers throughout all history.
My suggestions below:
1. We should call her “Mother Sheehan”. We should never call her Cindy; I don’t know her. “Mother Sheehan” is her title, and expresses her ceremonial status as a bereaved mother, calling forth over the dead body of her son. She is not a person now, she is a mother, which is not an expression of her individuality, but rather the expression of her eternal character: the mother, the bringer of life who has been wronged by state power.
And so forth and so on.
It isn't just that it's an insane statement that disturbs the reasonable, but that it's so typical in its college-boy earnestness. If I take it for parody at any point, the next sentence dissuades me: these are thoughts that arise from a habit of mind that could not be imitated by art; they are ---in their self-loathing and loathesomeness--- inherent to the character of the Leftist.
Broken-minded, broken-hearted haters who imagine themselves the very essence of human enlightenment.
Necrophiliac Obsessions (Exhibit A) Mood:
I don't want to hear anymore about Natalee Holloway, okay? No more of it! It's beyond necrophilia at this point ---and I'm sick of nonsense.
How about if these Big Media morons do a story or two about alcoholism among young women? I hear it's a very big deal these days. Maybe they could do a few PSAs about the dangers of going on summer vacation cockhunts for total strangers.
Mrs. Twitty, your daughter is dead. I wish, for your sake and hers, that it were not so, but it is.
Please go home now. There, you might profitably remind the other young women in your town that Life is not a game and that stupid decisions can bear horrific consequences.
Put Paid Mood:
Despite the inexcusably bad prose in the following Washington Post report, you can be rest assured that chickenshit has its costs:
A central player has voted with his feet in the drama over NARAL Pro-Choice America's decision to withdraw a television ad about Supreme Court nominee John G. Roberts Jr. that outraged conservatives had branded as false. Some Democrats said their side should be tougher, and one of them is David E. Seldin, who as NARAL's communications director had defended the ad's linking of Roberts to violent abortion opponents as "100 percent accurate." A day after Thursday night's announcement that the ad was being yanked, Seldin sent an e-mail to friends saying that he was leaving his job immediately.
That's the lead paragraph in a news story.
I have yet to hear a single talking head from either side of the Roberts nomination not call this ad a bunch of dishonest chickenshit.
Once again, essential human rights are being defended by the ugliest people possible. It's funny how often that happens.
Posted by Toby Petzold
at 1:28 AM CDT
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Updated: Sunday, 14 August 2005 1:29 AM CDT
Saturday, 13 August 2005
Brilliant Post Now Playing: "Eye in the Sky" by the Alan Parsons Project
Michelle Malkin calls our attention to this very powerful essay at Varifrank.com about how very selfish this Cindy Sheehan dame is.
There would be no point in excerpting any of it for you here; it's organically whole.
As Butch and Sundance might have asked, "Who is this guy?"
Getting Angry Mood:
don't ask Now Playing: "Tangerine" by Led Zeppelin
Via The Power Line, I came across this article by Josh Gerstein in today's New York Sun:
At some point in mid-2000, while the [Able Danger] was running data-mining experiments, the computer produced Mohammed Atta's name along with a suggestion he was linked to other suspected Al Qaeda operatives. "Those connections led back to a Brooklyn cell, and that Brooklyn cell contained four of the terrorists," Mr. [Curt] Weldon [Republican Congressman of Pennsylvania] said yesterday.
While the "Able Danger" project was little discussed until recently, a broader Pentagon data-mining effort, known originally by the Orwellian name, "Total Information Awareness," was shuttered in 2003 after an outcry from privacy advocates. Some who were critics of that program say the recent developments suggest that the data-intensive technologies now deserve a second look.
Now would be a good time to compare and contrast two different intelligence items: the Presidential Daily Briefing (PDB) of 6 August 2001 and the information gathered by Able Danger on Mohammad Atta and the pack of vermin who followed him to their deaths.
Go ahead and read that PDB. Don't worry: it's barely more than a page...I can wait...
Done? Good. (After this is over, you can go back to doing your impression of Richard ben-Veniste's suppository.)
In the meantime, show me where in that now-infamous memo is there any inkling of what was to come on 11 September 2001. Any mention of any names or other relevant details? Oh, I know it talks about New York City and hijacking airplanes, but, unless you're intellectually dishonest (or just a Dhimmicrat), there's really no way you can say that that PDB was any sort of warning at all. Except, maybe, if you weren't already aware that al-Qaeda had a "thing" about murdering Americans.
Now consider that our Government knew that Atta belonged to a cell of terrorists in New York City more than a year before the atrocities of 11 September 2001. Knew him and his fellow murderers by name and location.
And the reason why this intelligence was not allowed to be transmitted to domestic law enforcement was because of a "wall" erected by the Clinton Department of Justice and, in particular, by Deputy Attorney General Jamie Gorelick, between military intelligence and the FBI.
There isn't really any question of which side in this War against the Terrorists is the more culpable for what happened on that black day: it's liberals and Leftists who make excuses for Clinton's impotent response to Osama and who would never have tolerated for a moment any encroachment on civil liberties by the current White House ---the very kind that might have disrupted the machinations of these Islamofascist murderers we now fight in Iraq.
Nevertheless, I think Congressman Weldon makes an excellent point which I myself often lament in the broader view of this Administration's failures in communication:
Mr. Weldon said the Total Information Awareness program was hamstrung by several factors, including the association of its director, Admiral John Poindexter, with the Iran-Contra scandal. "We put the wrong person in and put the wrong spin on it," the congressman said. "Somehow, it became a massive, 'Big Brother' spying effort on the American people. That perception killed what was a necessary effort."
True dat. President Bush is an admirably determined man, but he has often sucked at selling the American People on the necessities and rationales in this War. But, tin ear or not, it is his duty to make the case.
It is the imperative of History that the events leading to the atrocities of 11 September 2001 be more fully understood.
I believe we are about to get our education.
Posted by Toby Petzold
at 2:39 PM CDT
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Updated: Friday, 12 August 2005 2:45 PM CDT
At NRO's The Corner ---which is still a great place to visit, but becoming increasingly obnoxious--- John Podhoretz says of the Kean Commission:
It behaved disgracefully and in a nakedly partisan fashion, with former officials of the Clinton administration attempting to use the platform to damage the president's reelection chances. Then, after months of ludicrous conduct, out of nowhere came the brilliantly conceived and written report that set a new standard of eloquence and coherence for government documents, became a major bestseller and redeemed the commission's reputation.
Well, that didn't last long.
In a story filed at 7:10 PM, the Associated Press is now confirming all the particulars of what will now forever be called the Able Danger disaster. The 9/11 Commission staff did hear about intelligence-gathering efforts that hit pay dirt on the whereabouts of Mohammed Atta -- in 1999 -- and deliberately chose to omit word of those efforts.
And why? Because to do so might upset the timeline the Commission had established on Atta.
And why is that significant? Because the Mohammed Atta timeline established by the Commission pointedly insisted Atta did not meet with an Iraqi intelligence agent in Prague.
And why is that significant? Because debunking the Atta-Iraq connection was of vital importance to Democrats, who had become focused almost obsessively on the preposterous notion that there was no relation whatever between Al Qaeda and Iraq -- that Al Qaeda and Iraq might even have been enemies.
If Richard ben Veniste's an asshole, then Jamie Gorelick lives next door.
I want some answers, Mr. Kean. I want to know why your staffers and you, yourselves, didn't think Able Danger's identification of those animals back in 1999 [CORRECTION: it was probably mid-2000] wasn't something worth reporting to the American People.
(And will someone tell Duncan Black I've got his PDB right here? Thanks.)
Posted by Toby Petzold
at 3:12 AM CDT
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Updated: Friday, 12 August 2005 2:40 PM CDT
Crime Is Interesting Now Playing: "No Expectations" by the Rolling Stones
Speaking of irrelevant crap that Big Media obsesses over at the expense of actually important news, did you see the cable news outlets today ---running footage of the hotel room where the Hyattes were staying when the cops arrested them? With long, lingering shots of such exotica as trash and food containers strewn across what we now know to be a dresser and that little table where you can write home with some stationery from the front desk?
Taking It, Personally Mood:
Former President Carter, who is a miserable buffoon, is still accusing George Will of having stolen his briefing book prior to Carter's 1980 debate with Ronald Reagan. But George ain't havin' it:
A quarter of a century has passed since 44 states said "No, thanks" to Jimmy Carter's offer to serve a second term, yet he still evidently thinks his loss is explained not by foreign policy debacles, such as invading Iran with eight helicopters, and a misery index -- inflation plus unemployment -- of 22, almost triple today's index. Rather, he seems to think approximately this:
Ronald Reagan won because he won the only debate. He won it not because of Carter's debate performance ("I had a discussion with my daughter, Amy, the other day, before I came here, to ask her what the most important issue was. She said she thought nuclear weaponry . . .") but only because Reagan had Carter's briefing book. And Reagan had it because this columnist gave it to him.
Neglected to Gloat about This
I've neglected to gloat here about the dissolution of the George Soros-funded organization America Coming Together (ACT), but will rectify that now. As Byron York writes:
A few days after the 2004 election, America Coming Together, the giant pro-Democratic voter turnout group that had raised about $200 million from George Soros, Peter Lewis, and a variety of Hollywood moguls, released a list of its accomplishments. Obviously, ACT, as big as it was, had not put John Kerry over the top, but the group had "held conversations at 4.6 million doorsteps about the truth about the Iraq war, about the state of our healthcare system, about the economy." It had registered half-a-million new voters. In the last days of the campaign it had made 23 million phone calls, sent out 16 million pieces of mail, and delivered 11 million fliers. And on top of it all, it had "launched the largest get-out-the-vote effort the Democratic Party has ever seen," turning out "unprecedented levels of voters in the battleground states."
It all sounded very, very impressive. And then ACT listed its accomplishments at the polls, and the results seemed far less impressive. ACT had "helped ensure George W. Bush’s defeat in several of the key states and made the race close in others." It had "enabled Democrats to take back the Oregon state legislature for the first time in 10 years." It had helped Missouri Democrat Robin Carnahan win election as Missouri secretary of state. And finally, "In New Hampshire, we saw wins for the presidential race and the governor’s race, as well as a gain of four state senate seats."
And that was it. Soros and all his colleagues had spent $200 million to elect a Democratic secretary of state in Missouri.
These billionaire populists would be money ahead if they'd just support candidates and causes that don't appear to the American People as un-American.
But, then, that would defeat their whole purpose, wouldn't it?
One must ask what the fuck is going on. Captain Ed says:
Tomorrow's New York Times reports that members of the 9/11 Commission reversed themselves and now acknowledge being briefed on the Army's data mining project, Able Danger, prior to the publication of their report to the American people. After over 24 hours of denying that anyone had told the Commission about the secret project, their spokesman now says that commission officials met with a uniformed officer who told them about the identification of Mohammed Atta and three other 9/11 hijackers in 2000, over a year prior to the attacks:
The Sept. 11 commission was warned by a uniformed military officer 10 days before issuing its final report that the account would be incomplete without reference to what he described as a secret military operation that by the summer of 2000 had identified as a potential threat the member of Al Qaeda who would lead the attacks more than a year later, commission officials said on Wednesday.
The officials said that the information had not been included in the report because aspects of the officer's account had sounded inconsistent with what the commission knew about that Qaeda member, Mohammed Atta, the plot's leader.
This is pretty outrageous. What the hell was causing our former Commander-in-Chief to squelch this information? Captain Ed starts by blaming someone I enjoy blaming quite a bit:
And while the Clinton policy of enforcing a quarantine between law enforcement and intelligence operations came under general criticism, their report never included the fact that the "wall" for which Commission member Jamie S. Gorelick had so much responsibility specifically contributed to Atta's ability to come and go as he pleased, building the teams that would kill almost 3,000 Americans.
Keep in mind that the anti-Bush Left routinely excoriates our President for not paying attention to some goddamned PDB that actually says nothing that wasn't already known about al-Qaeda to anybody with a TV set or common sense. But, with this new revelation, it appears that our Government knew plenty about Atta and several of the other murderers a long time before the atrocities of 11 September 2001 ---and did nothing about it because the wretched animals were here legally. Yep. More of the old law enforcement stuff that the Dhimmicrats would like to sell you. Read some more (with my emphasis):
The firestorm began on Tuesday when Weldon, vice-chairman of the House Armed Services and Homeland Security committees, said a classified military intelligence unit known as Able Danger had identified four of the hijackers - Atta, Marwan al-Shehhi, Khalid al-Mihdar, and Nawaf al-Hazmi - as part of an al-Qaida cell code named “Brooklyn” as early as 1999.
Weldon alleged that the Pentagon had rejected Able Danger’s suggestion that this information be passed on to the FBI, the US domestic law-enforcement agency. According to Weldon, the Pentagon said the four were in the country on green cards - which they were not - and so information on them could not be shared.
“In fact, I’ll tell you how stupid it was, they put stickies [post-it notes] on the face of Mohammed Atta on the chart that the military intelligence unit had completed and they said you can’t talk to Atta because he’s here [legally],” Weldon said on Tuesday.
Dude, this is so fucking bad. If what Weldon is saying checks out, it's going to unleash a wave of recriminations against pieces of crap like Gorelick and Berger and Clinton that no amount of Big Media shilling will ever turn away.
"Able Danger" Now Playing: "Turn to Stone" by the Electric Light Orchestra
What is one to make of this (emphasis added)?
WASHINGTON Members of the independent commission that investigated the Sept. 11 terror attacks have called on Congress to determine whether the Pentagon withheld intelligence information showing that a secret American military unit had identified Mohamed Atta and three other hijackers as potential threats more than a year before the attacks.
The former commission members said the information, if true, could rewrite an important chapter of the history of the intelligence failures before Sept. 11, 2001.
"I think this is a big deal," said John Lehman, a Republican member of the commission who was navy secretary in the Reagan administration. "The issue is whether there was in fact surveillance before 9/11 of Atta and, if so, why weren't we told about it? Who made the decision not to brief the commission's staff or the commissioners?"
Detailed accounts about the findings of the secret operation, known as Able Danger, were offered this week by Representative Curt Weldon, the Pennsylvania Republican who is vice chairman of the House Armed Services Committee, and by a former defense intelligence official.
An outspoken member of Congress on military and intelligence questions, Weldon, a champion of data mining efforts like Able Danger, has helped arrange interviews for reporters with the former military intelligence official. The official insisted on anonymity, saying he did not want to jeopardize political support for future data mining in the military.
The official said in an interview Monday that the Able Danger team was created in 1999 under a directive signed by General Hugh Shelton, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, to assemble information about Qaeda networks around the world.
He said that by the middle of 2000 the operation had identified Atta and three of the other future hijackers as members of an American-based cell and that the information was presented that summer in a chart to the Pentagon's Special Operations Command headquarters in Tampa, Florida.
What's all this then? The Pentagon had their eyes on Atta for more than a year before the atrocities of 11 September 2001?
Why, that was during the Presidency of Bill Clinton, wasn't it? You know: back when things were beautiful and prosperous and carefree.
History's going to land on that guy like a ton of bricks.
Wolf Blitzer: Moron Mood:
I think you'll agree that Wolf Blitzer is a moron after reading this post over at Countercolumn:
I was in the lunch room at work today, right before coming home, and Wolf Blitzer was on, talking to some retired general about the incident in which 14 marines were killed by 1 IED.
The general was trying to make the point that the IED was a "monster IED," and a shaped charge IED at that, and that it is not even clear that a Bradley or even an M1 Abrams tank crew could have survived that particular blast at that range.
The explosion flipped the 31-ton troop carrier over and caused it to burst into flames. It was not immediately clear how many of the marines had died from the explosion or from the flames.
That's right. The explosion flipped a 31-ton APC.
And what is Wolf Blitzer's argument? That the military didn't provide good vehicles in the Al Anbar Province. And that -- and I quote verbatim, -- "an up-armored Humvee would have stood a better chance." It is truly terrifying to consider the force of that IED blast. But Blitzer has no excuse for not even considering what he's saying. He's just taking the opportunity to get off his usual shots at Rumsfeld and Bush.
Do the math. If the explosion flipped vehicle weight 31 tons (plus another ton and a half or so of marines and gear), then what are the survivability chances of a 4-ton uparmored Humvee?
I'll tell you:
Anything left of the Humvee would have been parked in Syria, dumbass.
The retired general was being too diplomatic to tell Blitzer he was being a moron, but Blitzer kept pressing the point. "I'm very disappointed that we don't have the good vehicles in the Al Anbar province," he says. "It's a very sensitive issue for me, because I was there in March.["]
Some Effluvia Find Their Level: Low and Left
Some of the detritus from The Left Coaster has accreted in a previously unknown depression of the blogosphere called Low and Left. Here's some advice from "DJ Moonbat" on dealing with "trolls":
If addressing a troll's point advances the greater good (i.e., making them feel stupid and inadequate, and thus bringing them closer to true understanding), by all means do so. But if all you hope to achieve is correcting a misunderstanding, or educating someone who seems horribly misguided, or getting an emotional cripple in touch with the fundamental decency that should underpin human existence, forget it. You're not dealing with sane people.
Translation: if you're sure you're right about it, correct your opponents' grammar and/or punctuation. Otherwise, if you are faced with someone who actually knows what he's talking about, try to ignore him or use ad hominem attacks to distract your friends from seeing you exposed as the partisan hack you are.
Posted by Toby Petzold
at 8:39 PM CDT
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Updated: Monday, 8 August 2005 8:40 PM CDT
Credit Where It's Due Now Playing: "Jackie Blue" by the Ozark Mountain Daredevils
On his Countdown show on MSNBC, Keith Olbermann just did an exceptionally creative and interesting story on the life of the late Peter Jennings. If you missed it ---as 99.5 percent of Americans did--- be sure to catch it when they replay the program later tonight. Olbermann did a fantastic job. And you know he must have because I wouldn't admit it if I didn't have to.
Posted by Toby Petzold
at 7:22 PM CDT
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Updated: Monday, 8 August 2005 7:23 PM CDT
Crashing Now Playing: I'm loving me some scandal...
Charles Johnson points us to the point man for the Air America debacle: Brian Maloney (The Radio Equalizer) says they're having trouble making payroll.
It's bad enough the company is generating fresh bad publicity almost daily, over the diverted $875,000 in taxpayer funds intended for a Bronx-based community service organization.
Now, to make matters worse, an internal memo obtained by the Radio Equalizer indicates Air America Radio employees faced late paychecks just over a week ago.
They were apparently stunned to receive a last-minute notice sent at 5:09pm Thursday, July 28th, indicating direct deposits would not be made Friday, as expected.
Al Franken's a fairly well-to-do man, isn't he? Why can't he just take a pay cut and help the network make ends meet?
I took a nap last night so that I could be up to watch Discovery make its landing, but the impossibly delicious Christi Paul of Headline News is now telling me that they're delaying the landing until about 0520 Texas time.
I was sorry to hear of Peter Jennings' death last night. I always thought he was a smooth operator, even when I didn't like his politics, which he did less and less to conceal as time went by. Hard as it is to believe now, Jennings' World News Tonight was my preferred evening network news destination throughout most of my early adulthood. ABC News simply seemed to have its ear more firmly to the ground of international events than did the other networks ---and I have little doubt that Peter Jennings was responsible for that.
I wish his family and friends all the strength and comfort they deserve in these dark days to come.
As for me, I have no further interest in bad-mouthing the man or his work, which, taken on the whole, was influential and probably even courageous in its way.
If you've never read this May 2003 essay by Robert Baer (author of the book Sleeping with the Devil, from which it is derived), you really ought to do so now. It's a sober and sometimes appalling look at our relationship with Saudi Arabia ---and at what a dysfunctional disaster that country is.
It's a longish piece, but very rewarding to all sides of the debate about our involvement with corrupt Arab regimes.
Posted by Toby Petzold
at 11:19 AM CDT
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Updated: Sunday, 7 August 2005 11:21 AM CDT
Saturday, 6 August 2005
A Traitor to Great Britain, Deserving of Being Stripped of His Citizenship and Deported
Courtesy of Tom Elia (via Jeff Goldstein) come these excerpts from George Galloway's recent appearance on Syrian TV. On 31 July 2005, Galloway said:
Mr. Blair is using this crime and all these dead people as a justification for this absurd idea of a war on terrorism. "Terror" is a word... Terror is a tactic, it's not a strategy. The idea that Muslims have some kind of sickness in their bodies, which must be cured, which is the idea behind Bush, behind Mr. Blair, and behind Mr. Berlusconi's government in Italy - It must be resisted. It's not the Muslims who are sick. It's Bush and Blair and Berlusconi who are sick. It's not the Muslims who need to be cured. It's the imperialist countries that need to be cured.
If terror is a tactic, then what is the strategy and why should someone who sits in a democratic, multicultural parliament stand up in defense of an ideology and culture that would never allow such representation to its own millions? That is the only question in understanding this wretched piece of rubbish ---as there is none of his treason.
Two of your beautiful daughters are in the hands of foreigners - Jerusalem and Baghdad. The foreigners are doing to your daughters as they will. The daughters are crying for help, and the Arab world is silent. And some of them are collaborating with the rape of these two beautiful Arab daughters. Why? Because they are too weak and too corrupt to do anything about it.
Galloway is an Islamofascist, right down to the Koranically anachronistic metaphors. What a worthless turd.