17 Apr, 06 > 23 Apr, 06
10 Apr, 06 > 16 Apr, 06
3 Apr, 06 > 9 Apr, 06
27 Mar, 06 > 2 Apr, 06
20 Mar, 06 > 26 Mar, 06
13 Mar, 06 > 19 Mar, 06
6 Mar, 06 > 12 Mar, 06
27 Feb, 06 > 5 Mar, 06
20 Feb, 06 > 26 Feb, 06
13 Feb, 06 > 19 Feb, 06
6 Feb, 06 > 12 Feb, 06
30 Jan, 06 > 5 Feb, 06
23 Jan, 06 > 29 Jan, 06
16 Jan, 06 > 22 Jan, 06
9 Jan, 06 > 15 Jan, 06
2 Jan, 06 > 8 Jan, 06
26 Dec, 05 > 1 Jan, 06
19 Dec, 05 > 25 Dec, 05
12 Dec, 05 > 18 Dec, 05
5 Dec, 05 > 11 Dec, 05
28 Nov, 05 > 4 Dec, 05
21 Nov, 05 > 27 Nov, 05
14 Nov, 05 > 20 Nov, 05
7 Nov, 05 > 13 Nov, 05
31 Oct, 05 > 6 Nov, 05
24 Oct, 05 > 30 Oct, 05
17 Oct, 05 > 23 Oct, 05
10 Oct, 05 > 16 Oct, 05
3 Oct, 05 > 9 Oct, 05
26 Sep, 05 > 2 Oct, 05
19 Sep, 05 > 25 Sep, 05
12 Sep, 05 > 18 Sep, 05
5 Sep, 05 > 11 Sep, 05
29 Aug, 05 > 4 Sep, 05
22 Aug, 05 > 28 Aug, 05
15 Aug, 05 > 21 Aug, 05
8 Aug, 05 > 14 Aug, 05
1 Aug, 05 > 7 Aug, 05
25 Jul, 05 > 31 Jul, 05
18 Jul, 05 > 24 Jul, 05
11 Jul, 05 > 17 Jul, 05
4 Jul, 05 > 10 Jul, 05
27 Jun, 05 > 3 Jul, 05
20 Jun, 05 > 26 Jun, 05
13 Jun, 05 > 19 Jun, 05
6 Jun, 05 > 12 Jun, 05
23 May, 05 > 29 May, 05
16 May, 05 > 22 May, 05
9 May, 05 > 15 May, 05
2 May, 05 > 8 May, 05
25 Apr, 05 > 1 May, 05
18 Apr, 05 > 24 Apr, 05
11 Apr, 05 > 17 Apr, 05
4 Apr, 05 > 10 Apr, 05
28 Mar, 05 > 3 Apr, 05
21 Mar, 05 > 27 Mar, 05
14 Mar, 05 > 20 Mar, 05
7 Mar, 05 > 13 Mar, 05
28 Feb, 05 > 6 Mar, 05
21 Feb, 05 > 27 Feb, 05
14 Feb, 05 > 20 Feb, 05
7 Feb, 05 > 13 Feb, 05
31 Jan, 05 > 6 Feb, 05
24 Jan, 05 > 30 Jan, 05
17 Jan, 05 > 23 Jan, 05
10 Jan, 05 > 16 Jan, 05
3 Jan, 05 > 9 Jan, 05
27 Dec, 04 > 2 Jan, 05
20 Dec, 04 > 26 Dec, 04
13 Dec, 04 > 19 Dec, 04
6 Dec, 04 > 12 Dec, 04
29 Nov, 04 > 5 Dec, 04
22 Nov, 04 > 28 Nov, 04
15 Nov, 04 > 21 Nov, 04
8 Nov, 04 > 14 Nov, 04
1 Nov, 04 > 7 Nov, 04
25 Oct, 04 > 31 Oct, 04
18 Oct, 04 > 24 Oct, 04
11 Oct, 04 > 17 Oct, 04
4 Oct, 04 > 10 Oct, 04
27 Sep, 04 > 3 Oct, 04
20 Sep, 04 > 26 Sep, 04
13 Sep, 04 > 19 Sep, 04
6 Sep, 04 > 12 Sep, 04
30 Aug, 04 > 5 Sep, 04
23 Aug, 04 > 29 Aug, 04
16 Aug, 04 > 22 Aug, 04
9 Aug, 04 > 15 Aug, 04
2 Aug, 04 > 8 Aug, 04
26 Jul, 04 > 1 Aug, 04
19 Jul, 04 > 25 Jul, 04
12 Jul, 04 > 18 Jul, 04
5 Jul, 04 > 11 Jul, 04
28 Jun, 04 > 4 Jul, 04
21 Jun, 04 > 27 Jun, 04
14 Jun, 04 > 20 Jun, 04
7 Jun, 04 > 13 Jun, 04
31 May, 04 > 6 Jun, 04
24 May, 04 > 30 May, 04
17 May, 04 > 23 May, 04
10 May, 04 > 16 May, 04
3 May, 04 > 9 May, 04
26 Apr, 04 > 2 May, 04
19 Apr, 04 > 25 Apr, 04
12 Apr, 04 > 18 Apr, 04
5 Apr, 04 > 11 Apr, 04
29 Mar, 04 > 4 Apr, 04
22 Mar, 04 > 28 Mar, 04
15 Mar, 04 > 21 Mar, 04
8 Mar, 04 > 14 Mar, 04
1 Mar, 04 > 7 Mar, 04
23 Feb, 04 > 29 Feb, 04
16 Feb, 04 > 22 Feb, 04
9 Feb, 04 > 15 Feb, 04
2 Feb, 04 > 8 Feb, 04
26 Jan, 04 > 1 Feb, 04
19 Jan, 04 > 25 Jan, 04
12 Jan, 04 > 18 Jan, 04
5 Jan, 04 > 11 Jan, 04
29 Dec, 03 > 4 Jan, 04
22 Dec, 03 > 28 Dec, 03
15 Dec, 03 > 21 Dec, 03
8 Dec, 03 > 14 Dec, 03
1 Dec, 03 > 7 Dec, 03
24 Nov, 03 > 30 Nov, 03
17 Nov, 03 > 23 Nov, 03
10 Nov, 03 > 16 Nov, 03
27 Oct, 03 > 2 Nov, 03
20 Oct, 03 > 26 Oct, 03
13 Oct, 03 > 19 Oct, 03
6 Oct, 03 > 12 Oct, 03
29 Sep, 03 > 5 Oct, 03
22 Sep, 03 > 28 Sep, 03
15 Sep, 03 > 21 Sep, 03
8 Sep, 03 > 14 Sep, 03
1 Sep, 03 > 7 Sep, 03
25 Aug, 03 > 31 Aug, 03
18 Aug, 03 > 24 Aug, 03
11 Aug, 03 > 17 Aug, 03
4 Aug, 03 > 10 Aug, 03
28 Jul, 03 > 3 Aug, 03
21 Jul, 03 > 27 Jul, 03
14 Jul, 03 > 20 Jul, 03
7 Jul, 03 > 13 Jul, 03
30 Jun, 03 > 6 Jul, 03
23 Jun, 03 > 29 Jun, 03
16 Jun, 03 > 22 Jun, 03
9 Jun, 03 > 15 Jun, 03
2 Jun, 03 > 8 Jun, 03
26 May, 03 > 1 Jun, 03
19 May, 03 > 25 May, 03
12 May, 03 > 18 May, 03
5 May, 03 > 11 May, 03
28 Apr, 03 > 4 May, 03
21 Apr, 03 > 27 Apr, 03
Better Living through Science
Jet Propulsion Laboratory
The Loyal Opposition
The Left Coaster
Deep Blade
Moonbattery Park
Sunday, 19 September 2004
Nuttiness Unending
Mood:  spacey
My friends at The Left Coaster are discussing the newest theory explaining Rathergate. Turns out, it's all Karl Rove's fault.

Posted by Toby Petzold at 7:14 PM CDT | Post Comment | View Comments (1) | Permalink
Saturday, 18 September 2004
Snipe from the Left
The folks at RedState have linked to an interesting column by Howard Zinn, professor emeritus at Boston University and a "progressive," which, by now, we all know means liberal.

Zinn observes of Kerry:

He needs to stop saying, as he did recently in the Midwest, that he defended this country when he was fighting in Vietnam. That is not an honest statement. If it were true, then he would not have turned against the war.

He was not defending this country when he fought in Vietnam. He was defending this country when he said we were wrong to be in Vietnam and we should get out.

He should not be saying that he will wage the Iraq war better, that he will replace U.S. troops with soldiers from other countries. If it is immoral for our soldiers to be occupying Iraq and killing Iraqis every day, then it is immoral for foreign soldiers to do the same.
Zinn's thoughts are probably closer to Kerry's own than Kerry would openly admit, but what is the poor man to do? Kerry's voting history in the United States Senate is one long string of miscalculations: he misunderstood Communism and worked to appease its propagators; has mistrusted the military and intelligence communities and has voted to cut their funding at many important moments; and has misjudged the Islamofascist threat, behaving in a schizoid manner in the face of a new war.

I wouldn't trust John Kerry with a sack of shit.

Posted by Toby Petzold at 11:24 PM CDT | Post Comment | View Comments (3) | Permalink
Here's Your Talking Points, Zappone
Mood:  a-ok
Courtesy of The Politburo Diktat, this is today's statement from RNC Communications Director Jim Dyke:

"Bill Burkett, Democrat activist and Kerry campaign supporter, passes information to the DNC; Kerry campaign surrogate Max Cleland discusses "valuable" information with Bill Burkett; Bill Burkett talks to "senior" Kerry campaign officials; an apparently unsuspecting news organization uses faked forged memos and an interview with Ben Barnes at the same time the Democratic National Committee launched Operation Fortunate Son; and Kerry campaign manager Mary Beth Cahill was among the first to call Ben Barnes and congratulate him after his interview. The trail of connections is becoming increasingly clear."
At this point, Dan Rather's refusal to both acknowledge his chicanery and to expose the source who fed him the Killian Forgeries can only be explained by one overriding factor: he doesn't want to implicate the Kerry campaign in any of this.

It doesn't matter. It gets done, anyway.

Posted by Toby Petzold at 10:50 PM CDT | Post Comment | View Comments (3) | Permalink
Smash the UN
I despise the United Nations and I can't think of a time in my politically-conscious life that I haven't felt otherwise. In fact, unless I'm just imagining things, the first letter to the editor of the local rag here in Austin that I ever wrote was in protest of Yasser Arafat's proposed visit to address the General Assembly of the UN in November 1988.

I'm a full-on Bircher when it comes to that lousy institution. I think it is a vector for disease and needs to be expelled from this country. And this country certainly ought to withdraw from its membership as soon as possible.

And just what the fuck is Kofi Annan talking about when he says the War for Iraq was illegal? If he really thinks so, he should consider what Amir Taheri wrote in the New York Post today:

What Annan is saying, in fact, is that the United States and 33 other members of the United Nations have acted as rogue states, trampling under foot its Charter to change the regime of another U.N. member.

There is a well-established procedure for dealing with those who violate the U.N. Charter. Any U.N. member could seek a special session of the Security Council in which to produce evidence of the alleged illegal acts and demand redress. So far, not a single member has chosen to take that route in connection with the Iraq war.
But why is this? Could it be that no other nation in the world has the balls to make that case? Well, here's your chance, ladies! The Secretary General himself has opened the door for you to vent even more of your spleen at America and at what John Kerry calls our "coalition of the bribed."

If [Annan] really believes that international law has been violated, he should do something, even if he knows that whatever he does will get nowhere.

If, on the other hand, he is making these accusations just to look good, he must know that he is destroying the little that is left of the U.N.'s credibility. How can an organization, whose chief executive accuses the principal members of its board of violating its charter with impunity, be taken seriously?

Why didn't Annan resign when he clearly saw that the U.N. Charter was being violated by a group of "rogue states" led by America? And why, if the toppling of Saddam was illegal, is the U.N. helping
consolidate regime change in Iraq by supervising elections for a new government?
It is patently ridiculous for this idiot to have made such an accusation. And why is he doing it now? Perhaps to exert some influence on the elections in the United States and Australia? If so, he's probably doing Bush and Howard a service by demonstrating to their conservative supporters that, if the challengers on the Left get their way, dickheads like Annan will have even more leverage in times to come.

Get these "one world government" assholes out of my country. NOW.

Posted by Toby Petzold at 10:00 PM CDT | Post Comment | View Comments (3) | Permalink
Peeling the Onion
In today's Washington Post comes this interesting story (emphases mine):

The former Texas National Guard officer suspected of providing CBS News with possibly forged records on President Bush's military service called on Democratic activists to wage "war" against Republican "dirty tricks" in a series of Internet postings in which he also used phrases similar to several employed in the disputed documents.


In an Aug. 21 posting, Burkett referred to a conversation with former senator Max Cleland (D-Ga.) about the need to counteract Republican tactics: "I asked if they wanted to counterattack or ride this to ground and outlast it, not spending any money. He said counterattack. So I gave them the information to do it with. But none of them have called me back."

Cleland confirmed that he had a two- or three-minute conversation by cell phone with a Texan named Burkett in mid-August while he was on a car ride. He remembers Burkett saying that he had "valuable" information about Bush, and asking what he should with it. "I told him to contact the [Kerry] campaign," Cleland said. "You get this information tens of times a day, and you don't know if it is legit or not."
Sounds to me like the stink is wafting Kerry's way. There's absolutely no reason to doubt that Rather colluded with his friends in the Kerry campaign to "counterattack." Just think about it. Roll it around on your tongue.

And by way of the Drudge Report, here's more from the Associated Press:

The retired Guard official, Bill Burkett, said in an Aug. 21 e-mail to a list of Texas Democrats that after getting through "seven layers of bureaucratic kids" in the Democrat's campaign, he talked with former Georgia Sen. Max Cleland about information that would counter criticism of Kerry's Vietnam War service.
Sounds like Burkett went to considerable trouble to get in touch with Cleland. And someone must have thought he was worth listening to because he managed to get in touch with Kerry's favorite mascot on his cell phone.

There's tons more on this, comrades. Just try some of the links in my blogroll. Try this post from Allah, for starters:

And you had better believe that if the political orientations in this case were reversed, if it turned out that Bill Burkett had spoken to Trent Lott, say, and been told to "counterattack" by forwarding his information to the Bush campaign, Josh Marshall would be on a gurney somewhere getting zapped with those metal paddles to restart his fucking heart.
True dat.

Posted by Toby Petzold at 6:33 PM CDT | Post Comment | Permalink
Updated: Saturday, 18 September 2004 6:35 PM CDT
Friday, 17 September 2004
Insinuate. It's Good for You.
Oh, I like this very much:

Asked specifically whether team Kerry and the Democratic Party were involved in the forged document scandal, White House spokesman Scott McClellan told reporters: "It's clear that this is an orchestrated effort by Democrats and the Kerry campaign. And that's what I'm talking about when I talk about these latest attacks."

Asked directly whether the forged documents came from Democrats or the Kerry campaign, McClellan stated flatly "I believe that the Democrats and the Kerry campaign are behind these old, recycled attacks on the president's service, absolutely."

As evidence of Democratic Party involvement, McClellan cited a new ad sponsored by the Democratic National Committee, which featured clips from Rather's forged document report, along with visuals of what appear to be copies of the forgeries themselves.
Yes. Let's have some more of this. The White House has played it beautifully. Let Courageous Dan and the other clowns step on their dicks for a whole week without saying anything. And, then, come out and make the connection between the Killian Forgeries and the Democratic Attack Machine and the Kerry campaign. Even if it's not true, it will force these rectal thermometers to defend themselves against it.

And what does that get you? Another week of Viet Fucking Nam, baby. Another week where it just makes sense to discuss why Lt. John Kerry was chatting up Madame Binh in Paris during the Peace Talks while American soldiers were fighting back in Viet Nam. That is to ask, who authorized a lieutenant in the United States Navy to go and meet with the enemy in Paris during a time of war? Was he an agent of the State Department? Never heard it if he was. In what capacity was he there? I'd really like to know. Forget his fucking medals and ribbons: I want to know why John Kerry was sucking up to the VC in a chateau over wine and brie.

Got an answer, you waffling windbag?

UPDATE: Hmmm. Apparently, the story I quoted from was, shall we say, influenced by none other than the New York Times. In a story by Jim Rutenberg and Kate Zernike, they write:

Scott McClellan, the White House spokesman, said at a news briefing that the Democratic National Committee and the Kerry campaign were behind the documents, an accusation both camps denied.
But, if you read this post at the BeldarBlog, it's not entirely clear that McClellan ever said such a thing.

I don't know. As I read it all again, I think McClellan may very well have been suggesting that the DNC and the Kerrion had a hand in those forgeries. It's all good, though. Let 'em twist.

Posted by Toby Petzold at 9:53 PM CDT | Post Comment | Permalink
Updated: Friday, 17 September 2004 10:58 PM CDT
A Necessary Action
Writing in The Australian, Michael Costello brings us face to face with the reality of a nuclear Iran. He writes:

Sometime in the next year or two, Israel is going to have to make a decision. Will it accept that Iran has nuclear weapons and the missiles to deliver them against Israel? Or will it do what it did to Iraq's developing nuclear capability in 1981 and bomb it out of existence?
Costello goes on (emphases mine):

The Iranian leadership is widely hated by its own people. It is a fundamentalist Islamic dictatorship that made a farce of the recent so-called elections - a fundamentalist dictatorship that is another great gift to the world from that fine nation France, just as Iraq's original nuclear reactor was a gift from the generous-hearted people of France. While the Iranian dictatorship is no friend to Osama bin Laden, it does agree with him absolutely on one thing: Israel should cease to exist.

Furthermore, we cannot rely on this kind of dictatorship having the same sense of self-preservation as the US and the Soviet Union showed during the Cold War. Although there were moments when we stood on the brink of nuclear war, each side accepted the terrible logic of mutual assured destruction and stepped back. This is not true of Iran's leadership. Their beliefs embrace death and martyrdom. To rely on a nuclear-armed Iran to show restraint would be a triumph of hope against reason.
And it's not just the namby-pamby Eurocowards who will drag their feet and use "diplomacy" with these turbaned turds; it's also John Kerry. Why, he thinks it's a capital idea to actually assist Iran in developing light-water nuclear technology in exchange for a promise to not develop a nuclear weapons program. It's just that sort of shitheaded cleverness that Carter sold Clinton on in North Korea. And with what result (besides the Democratic LIE that Bush is to blame)? Kim now has The Bomb. What?! You mean they cheated? Why, yes, Madeleine. Yes, they did.

Posted by Toby Petzold at 8:03 PM CDT | Post Comment | Permalink
Thursday, 16 September 2004
Same Crowd, Different Response
One of my favorite milbloggers, BlackFive, has the scoop on how the convention of the National Guard Association in Las Vegas responded to the speeches made by the President and John Kerry.

Posted by Toby Petzold at 11:35 PM CDT | Post Comment | Permalink
Updated: Thursday, 16 September 2004 11:36 PM CDT
Here We Go Again
Mood:  don't ask
Now Playing: "Plateau" as covered by Nirvana
Showing once again that you don't need actions if you've got words, our State Department has put together a resolution concerning Iran's nuclear program ---done with the help of our good friends in France, Germany, and Canada--- and soon to be submitted to the International Atomic Energy Agency.

The resolution calls on Iran to clarify outstanding issues related to its nuclear program, including its highly enriched uranium program, by November 25[...]
And, surprisingly, there's this:

It also calls on Iran to immediately suspend all uranium enrichment and centrifuge activities.
But, unsurprisingly, there's this (emphasis mine):

The United States had wanted to refer Iran to the United Nations to face possible sanctions if it did not comply with demands.

But after days of talks in Vienna, Austria, the countries agreed on this language as "a compromise" to the Europeans[...]
Here, then, is the face of multilateralism. We happen to know that Iran is run by a bunch of repressive and oppressive Jew- and Christian-hating theocrats who believe in keeping the Middle East as unstable as they can. They are at war, ideologically, with the Great and Little Satans. And they'd like to have the tools to take that war to the final level of confrontation. Does Europe not know this? The Israelis do. We do. If we can't move these august bodies of deliberation (such the UN and the EU and the IAEA) to act in the world's best interests and keep as many Islamofascists as possible from getting ahold of The Bomb, then you know what comes next, dhimmi.

You really do.

Posted by Toby Petzold at 9:58 PM CDT | Post Comment | Permalink
Parasite on Turtle Bay
If I were a reporter ---and John Kerry were willing to go before the press in a meaningful way (which he is not)--- the first thing I'd ask him is whether he agrees with Kofi Annan that the War for Iraq was illegal.

Speaking to the BBC on Wednesday, Annan said the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq was illegal as it violated the U.N. Charter.

Asked whether he thought it broke international law, Annan said: "Yes, if you wish. I have indicated it was not in conformity with the U.N. Charter from our point of view, from the chapter point of view, it was illegal."
What a loathsome piece of shit this con artist is. While he presides over the massive corruption of his parasitic organization (e.g., the Oil-for-Food program, which enriched certain of his underlings and friends) and does nothing about genocide in the Sudan or human rights abuses in the rest of the Muslim world, Annan has the temerity to question American resolve? The goddamned UN is nothing without our strength and funding. It accomplishes nothing except to provide a venue for failed states and former empires to vent their resentments and dump their anti-Semitic garbage.

Seventeen resolutions over more than a decade, comrades. The UN knew what a terrible and dangerous place Iraq had become ---and chose to do nothing but issue papers against the Saddamites. But once a strong and morally ambiguous man [ambiguous?! I meant "morally unambiguous"! Jesus! How am I going to practice my love "with women all across the country"?] became President of the United States, those resolutions finally meant something.

I look forward to the day that the United States withdraws from that farce of a debate club and kicks them out of our country. They can go attach themselves to some other host and slip away into the irrelevance they so richly deserve.

Posted by Toby Petzold at 9:55 AM CDT | Post Comment | Permalink
Updated: Thursday, 16 September 2004 4:26 PM CDT
Uh, Need to Stop Watching the TV Now
All I know is that Bambi Whitebread and the Goth Chick in that new Dell Computers ad need a good, long seeing to from Uncle Tobe.

Posted by Toby Petzold at 2:36 AM CDT | Post Comment | Permalink
Wednesday, 15 September 2004
An Excerpt of a CBS Memo to Its Affiliates
Courtesy of Little Green Footballs, here is an excerpt of a CBS News statement sent to its affiliate stations:

The editorial content of the report was not based solely on the physical documents, but also on numerous credible sources who supported what the documents said.
In other words, CBS News is perfectly content to use fake memos to substantiate an irrelevant charge against the President. They persist with the use of these forgeries because they wish to benefit from the perception among people ignorant enough to believe they're real in making their charges. But since these documents are fake, it could only harm their case (except, again, with idiots who think Dan Rather is an honorable man).

Nobody cares what Lt. George W. Bush did or did not do in the Air National Guard 30+ years ago. We Texans twice elected him Governor and this country elected him President. The only people who profess to care are Democratic partisans who wrongly thought that John Kerry's war record would trump whatever Bush once did. Notice that they didn't care about their own nominees' service records in 1992, 1996, or 2000 ---but now they do? Fucking nonsense.

Posted by Toby Petzold at 8:37 PM CDT | Post Comment | Permalink
Updated: Wednesday, 15 September 2004 8:39 PM CDT
An Irresponsible Goddamned Idiot
I'm watching Dan Rather right now on 60 Minutes II ---and it's hard to imagine a more irresponsible goddamned idiot. Instead of acknowledging the fact that these documents he's been pushing for the past week are forgeries, he continues to attack the President over a non-issue that everyone knows is a loser. Rather has had many public opportunities now to come off of this bullshit, but refuses to.

Even if Rather could concede the fact that these documents are forgeries, it would still be irrelevant because their substance, as he sees it, is accurate. (In fact, that is almost a verbatim summation in a headline in today's New York Times reporting the opinion of Jerry Killian's secretary. She thinks these documents are phoney, but are still, somehow, correct.) How does any of that make sense? How is that, in any sense, fair? It's like saying that the Shroud of Turin must be authentic because the Bible says Jesus of Nazareth was wrapped in a shroud. Never mind the fact that science has demonstrated repeatedly that it is impossible that that piece of cloth even could be genuine; all you need to know is that the Shroud represents an essential truth, which is to say it is literally an article of faith.

I have no idea what Rather is thinking right now. He seems willful and driven to be right in all of this when it is a fact that the documents upon which he has built his case are forgeries. He solicited the opinion of several people in authenticating these fakes whom he flatly ignored when they refused to do so. He is stonewalling. He is telling others to remain silent. He is defying the entire media world with his nonsense. What is he up to?

Is Rather drawing everyone into a trap? Does he have an ace up his sleeve? I don't know. But it's clear that he is becoming a far bigger story than this crap he is peddling about the President. That can't be what he intended, but it's certainly what has happened.

Stay tuned. With Chris Cox calling for a Congressional investigation and with most of the major media outlets passing judgement against him, Dan Rather is absolutely fucking up. And, in the bargain, he has inoculated the President against any further questions about his National Guard service. After all, once these idiots admit that they are liars about these forgeries, who will be obligated to believe them about anything?

Posted by Toby Petzold at 8:13 PM CDT | Post Comment | Permalink
Tuesday, 14 September 2004
John Payne Collier
Before the world of current events led me astray, one of my favorite intellectual pursuits was researching and arguing the Shakespeare Authorship Question. (In case you didn't know it, there are a lot of very sound reasons to doubt that the man the world knows as William Shakespeare was the actual Author of those famous plays and poems. And if you think the partisanship you find in the blogosphere these days is full of vitriol and contention, just have no idea. Shakespearean scholars make political pundits and bloggers look like a bunch of stoners comparing their favorite bands.)

One of the saddest and most interesting characters in all of Shakespearean scholarship is John Payne Collier (1789-1883), founder of the Shakespeare Society and one of the most renowned scholars of his day. He was a well-respected authority on matters Shakespearean, but was always dogged by an inferiority complex. In 19th Century England, class and reputation loomed far larger than what we modern egalitarians can appreciate. And Collier, for whatever reason, found himself on the outside looking in. And, so, in secret, he began acting on his ambitions to be accepted as the greatest name in all of Shakespearean scholarship.

Around 1852, Collier came forth with what was one of the holiest grails in all of Shakespeareana: a heavily-annotated and emended copy of Shakespeare's Second Folio (1632). The scholarly world was absolutely abuzz about this fantastic discovery. At long last, they were faced with the possibility that these annotations were made by a contemporary of Shakespeare's who may have been working from the original manuscripts of the Bard himself. (This was exciting, I would have you know, because not a single scrap of any literary manuscript or letter had ever ---or has ever--- been found in Shakespeare's own hand.)

In a very short while, though, an obscure little man named Andrew Edmund Brae began to question whether Collier's great discovery was on the up and up. Brae self-published a pamphlet called Literary Cookery which cast doubt upon Collier's honesty. Naturally, Collier was incensed and sued Brae for defamation.

But once this happened ---once Collier deigned to have "a conversation with the professional rumor mill"--- the cat was out of the bag. Soon, everybody wanted in on the action. Ingleby, Halliwell, Madden ---all of the great authorities of the age were ripping into him. Was Collier telling the truth about anything? Did he himself make those annotations and emendations? It had scarcely seemed possible that so reputable a man as Collier would do anything to jeopardize his life's passion.

But he had. John Payne Collier was, in fact, the creator and verifier of his own forgery. And no matter what other great things he had accomplished in his career as a Shakespearean scholar, his legacy was fixed in shame.

Posted by Toby Petzold at 11:07 AM CDT | Post Comment | Permalink
I don't want this to be a parody, so I am just going to go with what has reported of a new book of poetry by everyone's favorite sack of Gallic shit:

The United States is a voracious shark in pursuit of its prey while France is a graceful seagull, soaring above the tumult of the world in pursuit of peace and justice and all that is good and holy, wrote former French Foreign Minister Dominique de Villepin in a new book.

Now France's interior minister and a poet, de Villepin has written "Le Requin et La Mouette" (The Shark and the Seagull), in which he uses poetic imagery to justify his nation's vehement opposition to the Iraq war.

Borrowing the terms shark and seagull from another French author, Eric Cantona, the elegant de Villepin implies that the shark, "a symbol of power, strength and the refusal to be halted by the complexity of the world ... cutting through the sea and pouncing on its prey," represents George Bush's America, which simple-mindedly rejects other cultures.

France, on the other hand, is represented by the seagull, a symbol of sweet reasonableness "intoxicated by the sky."
Read the whole thing, preferably without a mouthful of any snarfables.

Posted by Toby Petzold at 7:37 AM CDT | Post Comment | Permalink
Bravery and Buffoons
This past Sunday, John Kerry took it upon himself to call up a reporter at the New York Times and discuss North Korea and how President Bush has let us all down. (Does this count as a break in Kerry's embargo on press conferences with others besides Jon Stewart and MTV? No.) It's pretty clear that Kerry was moved to do this by what he and many Democrats actually hope was a detonation of a nuclear or nuclear-related device in that sad little country last week. We still don't know exactly what it was ---except an opportunity for Kerry to wax wroth.

Mr. Kerry's basic argument, that the Iraq war has diverted attention from more dangerous nations like North Korea, is one he has often used on the campaign trail and in interviews over the past several months. But his language on Sunday, calling the situation "a nuclear nightmare" and directly accusing Mr. Bush of leaving the United States more vulnerable to North Korea, was far harsher and more incendiary than the language he has used before.

It is also highly unusual for Mr. Kerry to seek out a reporter on a Sunday, when he had no public appearances scheduled, to attack Mr. Bush. This comes as Mr. Kerry and his aides, during this final 50 days of the campaign, have promised to draw more consistent and sharper contrasts to Mr. Bush in response to criticism from supporters that their message has been too weak.
One of the points I raise among Leftists in the blogosphere that always goes unrebutted is that there is no good solution to the North Korean problem. And certainly none that they, as anti-war types, could possibly countenance. We do not want to have to resort to an all-out pre-emptive strike on the North because we know that they will get their licks in, too, at the expense of tens of thousands of innocent lives. There's no doubt about that. And, although it would be nice to think that there could be a palace coup against the Kimchi Pot there someday, it's really nothing very plausible at this point.

So, that leaves us with the third option, which was tried during the Clinton Administration. With the self-aggrandizing moron Jimmy Carter's [help], the North Koreans agreed to be bribed out of pursuing their nuclear weapons programs with promises of fuel oil, food aid, and ---incredibly--- assistance in building light-water nuclear reactors for the generation of electricity. This was done on the reasoning that we could maintain inspections of the spent fuel coming from these types of reactors and keep them from being reprocessed into the weapons-grade plutonium needed for their nukes.

Which is where naivete becomes negligence.

It is, in fact, exactly how the Kerrion want to handle Iran: help them develop one kind of nuclear technology and hope they're open and honest enough to not transition it to another kind. Idiocy!

Mr. Kerry argued that it was the Bush administration's refusal to follow Mr. Powell's advice in March 2001 and continue the Clinton administration's direct diplomacy with North Korea that created the conditions for the current crisis. Mr. Kerry has said for months that the United States must deal directly with the North Korean government - just as it dealt directly with Khrushchev during the Cuban missile crisis, and directly with China as it became a nuclear power in the 1960's.
But we are not obligated to maintain the facade or the substance of that diplomacy when it is clear that the North Koreans were cheating all along! Jesus! The Clinton-Carter-Albright Scheme was built on a false premise: that the Dear Leader was going to allow long-term inspections of his programs. Why did they think that such a thing was viable?

And you can also enjoy this, comrades: Bush withdrew from bilateral talks with the North Koreans because he knows that there are other countries in that region that have at least as much of an interest in keeping Kim in check as we do. That is to say, Kerry is criticizing the President for moving towards multilateral diplomacy in one place (North Korea) while falsely claiming that he has unilaterally acted to enforce the United Nations' resolutions in another (Iraq). Is that not absurd? In North Korea, where the risk of a nuclear holocaust is actual and imminent, President Bush has done what he should to involve other major actors in neutralizing the threat; in Iraq, where the risk of a nuclear holocaust was gathering, yet still only potential, he acted with force and a willing Coalition to preclude that threat from ever manifesting itself. And the geniuses on the Left can't see the wisdom in that? Ridiculous.

Posted by Toby Petzold at 4:17 AM CDT | Post Comment | Permalink
All God's Children Got Guns
I gotta gun. You gotta gun. All God's children got guns. Gonna march all over the battlefield 'cause all God's children got guns.

---from the musical finale of the Marx Brothers' Duck Soup (1932)
What a useful tool for the anti-Bush Left: the 10-year ban on assault weapons is now expired ---and those who hate guns and gun-owners have a new ball of yarn to play with.

Take, for instance, E.J. Dionne's piece in yesterday's Washington Post. Dionne says

Until it's clear that politicians will pay a price at the voting booths for opposing reasonable gun laws, the NRA will continue to win -- even if the price is putting those Uzis and AK-47s back on the streets.

That's why it was heartening to see Kerry challenge Bush on the president's failure to push for a renewal of the assault weapons ban. Here is a chance to move the gun debate away from the vague terrain of "pro-gun" vs. "anti-gun" to a concrete discussion of a measure that 57 percent of those with a gun in their household and 32 percent of NRA members support. (The figures are from the National Annenberg Election Survey.)
Blah, blah, blah. Do these sophistos really think that those who wish to use semi-automatic "assault rifles" to commit crimes have been ---in any way--- deterred by this ban? That's just an amazing joke. The ban was always about politics and window-dressing. Or does the anti-gun crowd think that an AK-47 with a flash-suppressor and a 30-round clip is less lethal than one without them (which were and still are legal)?

How hard these complaints fall in the light of a few facts.

Here's what Mark Holmberg of the Richmond Times-Dispatch has to say about it:

By the way, we use the term "assault-style," because they look and act like real assault rifles. But they're not fully automatic they fire one round per trigger squeeze, as opposed to a spray of lead from a real assault rifle. Fully automatic weapons have long been tightly controlled and monitored by the feds.

These post-ban rifles fire the same ammo and hold the same 30-round or more clips as the pre-ban guns. Most importantly, they'll blow the same-sized hole in you, which is considerable.

The only thing the ban really accomplished was to drive the prices up on the pre-ban rifles with all those bells and whistles, and original-equipment high-capacity pistols like mine.

Which is why there are plenty of gun-collecting NRA types who are secretly hoping the ban is renewed. Otherwise, their collections will drop significantly in value.
People who are intent on killing other people were never deterred by this ban. That would include terrorists, whom John Kerry now fatuously claims will have an "easier" time of it because of the President's "lack of leadership" on this now-expired ban:

"Today George Bush chose to make the job of terrorists easier and make the job of police officers harder, and that's just plain wrong."
Yeah. We're back to that stuff again. No honest person believes that John Kerry has a stronger commitment to fighting terrorists than does the President. Nor does any honest person believe that a terrorist gives a rat's ass about this country's gun-control laws.

Posted by Toby Petzold at 2:54 AM CDT | Post Comment | Permalink
Updated: Tuesday, 14 September 2004 2:31 PM CDT
Catblogging Update
I didn't really have as much fun with Boomer the cat as I was expecting because he was too interested in hiding in the darkest, most inaccessible corners of my home. I don't think he ever got past being freaked out by the surroundings, although he was nice enough when he wanted to be.

I dozed off for a while there, as I figured he was doing the same, but woke up to the sound of his insistent meowing. "Oh, there you are! Finally decided to come out from underneath those boxes, huh?"

Yeah, he seemed to reply ---and now I'm gonna go in here to see where else I can hide. And with that, the little bastard head-butted the door to my bedroom and darted in before I could even get up from the couch.

"No, no! Get outta there, goddammit!" It's exactly like having to babyproof your house. Things you wouldn't consider dangerous or fragile ---or potentially either--- suddenly become extremely interesting to a half-blind cat.

I finally got him out from underneath my bed, but it took a lot of work with a broomstick and me roaring at him first.

He probably took a dump in my closet. I'll have to remember to check later.

Posted by Toby Petzold at 2:06 AM CDT | Post Comment | Permalink
Monday, 13 September 2004
Catblogging (Sorta)
I'm really not trying to rip off Glenn Reynolds, but I will be catblogging for the next few hours. Actually, I'll be babysitting a friend's cat while she's at work. The cat's name is Boomer and he's going in for an eye operation later this afternoon. He and my friend live far outside of Austin, so she needed to bring him with her today to make the appointment nearby. But since cats aren't allowed at work, I am giving him a place to hang out.

He doesn't know what's going on just yet, but he's warming up. His main problem, besides being scared, is that he can't see very well.

He's pretty sweet, though. A real leg-swiper.

Posted by Toby Petzold at 9:03 AM CDT | Post Comment | Permalink
Assault Weapon Gibberish
Dhimmicratic craphounds in Congress are trying to portray the impending expiration of the assault weapons ban as the end of civilization. And it's all the Republicans' fault, see. (Remember: Dhimmicrats are tougher on crime than Republicans.)

So how does someone like the execrable Senator from New York, Chuck Schumer, make this point? Easy: by saying that we shouldn't end the ban because we don't want terrorists buying assault weapons.

Right. Terrorists are well-known for obeying gun control laws. I'm sure that the end of the ban will be all that it takes to awaken the al-Qaedist sleeper cells who've been biding their time for the past decade, just waiting for the chance to legally purchase a gat.


CORRECTION: I think the ban has already expired! My bad. Hope I didn't give anyone a false sense of safety.

Posted by Toby Petzold at 7:18 AM CDT | Post Comment | Permalink
Updated: Monday, 13 September 2004 3:20 PM CDT

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