Mildly Surprised, Basically Pleased Now Playing:salma hayek is Goddess
I was pretty surprised to see Crash win Best Picture. A very cute lady I know at work loaned me a copy of it and I watched it a couple of times and I really liked it ---but Best Picture? I don't know about that.
Lots of deserving winners tonight, though. That Hoffman cat and the incredibly beautiful Reese Witherspoon. The penguin movie won Best Documentary, which I was pleased to see.
Oh, and Jon Stewart did a really good job, although I'm sure all the squares out there will pan him. But how about those parody ads? They were fantastic.
Less said about that hip hop number the better. "It's Hard Out Here for a Pimp"? Whatever. It's not because I'm a tin-eared racist who can't get into pop culture; it's because that song is a suck-ass piece of crap. Period. Put something else up from that same genre and I might like it. Maybe even enough to say it was the Best Song. But that song? No. I don't have to like it to be a good person and I won't like it just to appear tolerant.
I'll tell you what, though. That Salma Hayek is just perfection. Good God!
(Thanks to E! for the pic. I'll take it down if you want me to, but I really don't wanna, so deal.)
Asleep at the Switch Now Playing:LOL
Ha, ha! I had heard in passing that Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg had fallen asleep during the arguments in the Texas House redistricting case, but did she really slump that far forward?!
Ha, ha, ha! That's the hardest I've laughed in days.
Why didn't one of those dopes sitting beside her do something chivalrous and give her an elbow in the rib cage?
Hee-hee. Thanks to all concerned. And to those who really weren't all that concerned, no.
See How They Snide Now Playing: "I Am the Walrus" by the Beatles
Bob Schieffer starts off tonight's CBS Evening News broadcast with the snide remark that President Bush is now closer to Osama bin Laden than ever before ---considering that they are both in Pakistan tonight.
In the sense of personal proximity? Yeah, I reckon that's so, Bob.
The contempt for this Administration comes rather easily anymore.
But we don't know anything about Osama's present situation. Not officially. Not even really.
It's going to take a lot more effort than what's been seen thus far to justify perpetual war against the Mohammedan menace, Mr. President. You have rarely been the man to make the case. But that's what this new struggle between civilizations requires.
Until something dire happens again to reawaken both the American People and this President to the dangers of extremist Islam, we will continue simply to stumble through these days.
I was just asking this question at another blog: wouldn't you think that your Government was stupid if it didn't use all the surveillance means at its disposal? Why wouldn't you sift through all these electronic communications if you thought there might be some plot afoot to destroy some place in this huge country? Terrorists operate online and do so while hiding in plain sight. That's where they chatter: go there, man.
I would be insulted if the people whom I elect to represent my interests and execute decisions to effect them didn't go after potential murderers.
It's childish to believe that the Freedom of Information Act is a real-time mandate. Maybe we can let some stuff slide a while, eh?
The Prophet's Hairdresser
You know, when I first heard of the name of the Iraqi town of Salman Pak, I was curious about such an alien-sounding name in the midst of a country of al- this and an-that. Nevertheless, I hadn't bothered until now to get the scoop on that name (emphasis mine):
BAGHDAD, Iraq — Gunmen fired two rockets in a village which includes a sacred Shiite tomb south of Baghdad, but there were no casualties nor damage to the shrine, U.S. and Iraqi officials said. U.S. officials said one round exploded around a nearby hotel.
The incident occurred near the tomb of Salman Pak, a seventh-century Persian convert to Islam who served as the barber to the Prophet Muhammad. Jamal al-Saghir, an aide to Shiite political leader Abdul-Aziz al-Hakim, said one hit the gate of the tomb and one exploded a few yards away.
That's very interesting. I wonder if Salman was to Mohammed anything like what Antinous was to the Roman Emperor Hadrian.
Distaff to Discharge Now Playing: "Anarchy in the UK" by the Sex Pistols
Charles Johnson gives us a story that demonstrates not only the intrinsic evil of radical Islam, but the insanity of motherhood in a death cult. It really doesn't get more fucked up than this:
In spite of PA pledges not to incite, an interview broadcast last week featured the mother of Wafa Al-Bas, the 21-year-old Arab woman from Gaza who was arrested at the Erez Crossing in June 2005 wearing a 20-pound (9 kg) bomb under her clothes.
The PA TV interview with Al-Bas' parents, which aired on February 20th, features her mother saying the event was hard for her - not because her daughter was on a suicide mission, but because she was arrested on her way to carry it out.
Al-Bas intended to bomb Be'er Sheva's Soroka Hospital outpatient clinic, where she had been receiving regular treatments for serious burns on 45 percent of her body resulting from a gas stove explosion in her home.
The failed bomber later told Israeli television that her greatest wish was to kill 30 to 50 Israelis, including children. The hospital attack would likely have killed or maimed the very Israeli doctor who had saved her life.
Sounds like it's time to drop a giant Pill in the Car Swarm People's water supply. These things cannot continue to breed.
Almost Entirely Blank
The fine folks over at The Counterrorism Blog remind us that today is the 13th anniversary of the bombing of the World Trade Center with a link-filled post you really ought to take for a spin.
I was in college when the 1993 WTC Bombing occurred. I recall that our local newspaper (the Austin American-Statesman) ran some of the stock market pages the next day, leaving them almost entirely blank except for the one-line explanation ---dead center--- for why there was no stock activity to report. I tacked one of those pages up in my apartment for probably a year or more. A big, blank, and yellowing piece of newsprint that you had to walk up to and read to understand why it was up on my wall.
The clever people always cluck and chirp about the one little thing that starts these conflagrations; some minor offense that begat a generation of punishment that they would have known better than to have allowed.
And for many years, they had their way. And the punishment was postponed.
Until, well...yeah. It's always that date, isn't it?
Clever people know shit.
(Did you know that Sandy Berger never had to do any jail time? That's because he's clever and knows better than you.)
CLARIFICATION: I wrongly implied in the text above that the WTC Bombing of 1993 had halted trading on the stock exchanges. I don't believe this is true. But it is true that the stocks pages in our newspaper here could not be updated because of massive comm losses in Lower Manhattan that day.
Damn the Iconoclasts
The destruction of the Mahdi's tomb in Samarra on Wednesday disgusts me greatly.
I do not want to see Islam destroyed ---contrary to my Catoesque demand that Islama delenda est--- but I do want to see it changed into something else. Really only destroyed, that is, by change.
The schism between the Shia and Sunnis is certainly deeper than anything going on in Christianity today. One might have hoped that the supposed brotherhood and universality of Islam would have made such an act of vandalism verboten, but it appears not.
But if I say it was Sunnis who did this thing today, you surely know I hope it was foreign Sunnis. The salafist or wahhabist or whatever-the-fuckist kind that steal into Iraq every hour of the day and sow discord right along with the Shiite Iranian agents. So I hope they can pin this crime against Zarqawi and those of his ilk. You know: real and strong evidence showing them in all their psychopathic zeal.
If ever there was a time for Sistani to come forward in a very public way, this would be it. Come on, dude: this is a grave offense, isn't it? To blast the golden tiles from the Twelfth Imam's sacred dome? Surely that warrants an appearance!
Just be sure to remind them to not worship your pixilated image.
Pony with a Shiny Coat
If the President were smart, he'd come out before the cameras in the Rose Garden tomorrow and say that he has heard the American People's concerns and that he is going to put those concerns ahead of his own informed opinion that there's nothing wrong with the United Arab Emirates' taking over the management of six major American ports. It would be a rare moment of the led leading their leader ---but that will never happen because he is just determined enough to make this a problem for no apparent fucking reason.
I just assumed that this [uproar] was a Democratic ploy (abetted, of course, by the usual Big Media organs) to make the Democratic Party look like it actually cares about our national security. You know: bare 'em a little fang; out-react the reactionaries; affect a feeling thou hast not.
But everybody's fuming over this one. Who knew? I'm getting a little emotional here, just thinking of how the Left and Right are coming together in defense of our ports against the tin-eared and tin-potted dictator.
(You're probably right, Rider: something about this story smells.)
I just saw Sasha Cohen's short program and it was fantastic. I was practically in tears. While that may sound nauseatingly gay, I can assure you I only got misty because I know what gold would mean to her and because she is too beautiful for mere words.
To my eyes, she owned her performance tonight outright, just like Sarah Hughes did in the long program back in 2002.
That Emily Hughes sure is cute. Dammit. Not as cute as Miss Cohen, though, but who is?
These Olympics haven't been especially interesting to me, but I think it's crap for Bryant Gumbel to suggest that they are games for whites only. Unless the IOOC actually has that written down somewhere, I think it's time for self-important dumbasses to shut up.
My bleg ---nay! My plea is that someone somewhere provide me with video of those pigeons shitting on Katie Couric's head. I beg of you! I will never not be watching that continuously, masturbatorily, unhingedly.
Anybody catch that Italian ice-dancing couple last night? After the haughty ice queen bore holes through her partner's soul with her eyes the night before because of a nasty fall he probably caused, she comes back on their second night's performance to give him a big ol' kiss and a headhug and The Pieta and the awwwwshucks that was nauseating! But extremely effective and the most brilliant demonstration of lemons being made into lemonade I have seen in a great while. There's no question why the Italian race is known for their melodrama. It's in the genes.
Or were those the Russians? You know, they can be rather dramatic, too.
CORRECTION: The International Olympic Committee is not, I am reliably informed, the same as the IOOC. Thanks.
"The growth of European-style anti-Semitism in the Arab world..." Now Playing:lizardoid in transmission
Over at the History News Network, Judith Apter Klinghoffer reproduces Bernard Lewis' latest essay, "The New Anti-Semitism," first published in The American Scholar , Volume 75, No. 1 (Winter 2006). It's well worth the time to read the whole thing, but I take the following passage as the key one. On the topic of rejuvenating Judenhass in Palestine and the Middle East around the time of the Second World War:
It became much more important after the events of 1948, when the humiliated Arabs drew comfort from the doctrine of the Jews as a source of cosmic evil. This continued and grew with subsequent Arab defeats, particularly after the ultimate humiliation of the 1967 war, which Israel won in less than a week.
The growth of European-style anti-Semitism in the Arab world derived in the main from this feeling of humiliation and the need therefore to ascribe to the Jews a role very different from their traditional role in Arab folklore and much closer to that of the anti-Semitic prototypes. By now the familiar themes of European anti-Semitism—the blood libel, the protocols of Zion, the international Jewish conspiracy, and the rest—have become standard fare in much of the Arab world, in the schoolroom, the pulpit, the media, and even on the Internet. It is bitterly ironic that these themes have been adopted by previously immune Muslims precisely at a time when in Europe they have become an embarrassment even to anti-Semites.
The Nazis aren't dead, you know. In fact, they just got themselves elected as perpetual partners to the Israeli people.
Daniel Pipes brings us this quote in regard to the displaying of posters featuring the image you see here of the Prophet as a porker:
The United States has given great thought to this over the last couple of days, and I mean at the very highest levels of our government. We condemn the outrageous, crude and sick portrayal of the Prophet Mohammed by an Israeli settler the other day. This woman is either sick or she is evil.... We are very pleased that she is going to be put on trial by the Israeli Government. She deserves to be put on trial for these outrageous attacks on Islam. We are grateful that President Weizman and Prime Minister Netanyahu have denounced her and her actions and her sick cartoon in very clear terms.
Those were the words of Ambassador Nicholas Burns, who was on Bill Clinton's National Security Council, and he spoke them back in July of 1997.
An Israeli settler had drawn this picture and posted copies of it in Arab areas of Hebron to express her contempt for Muslim extremists and terrorists. What did she get for her trouble?
In the judge's view she was guilty of incitement, racism and perhaps even endangering world peace! He even went so far as to compare her childish "pig poster" to the most evil anti-Semitic forgery ever conceived -- the "Protocols of the Elders of Zion!" And on January 8, 1998, twenty-six year-old Tatiana Soskin was sentenced by the Jerusalem District Court to two years in prison plus a one-year suspended sentence for ATTEMPTING to post drawings of a pig named "Mohamed." She was convicted of committing a racist act, supporting a terrorist organization, attempting to give religious offense and attempted vandalism.
I wonder whether the Israeli courts would do such a thing today.
Charles Johnson points us to the AP's photos of today's graduation ceremony for a police academy in the Palestinian town of Rafah in the Gaza Strip.
That's right: Palestinian policemen are circus performers.
I always thought of graduation ceremonies as sedate affairs where the speakers go on too long, but where everybody's happy. Is that what this shit is? It looks to me like retarded, psychotic behavior. Jesus!
Division of Labor = Hierarchization of Political and Moral Responsibility Now Playing:arbeit macht frei
Societies where one is not allowed to advocate war if he has not served are fascistic. "What do those outside the warrior cult know of our sacrifices? They are puny subhumans, good for nothing but working in our textile mills. Only we have earned the right to call for war ---or not!"
"But, my liege, I hate the war because I never served. I only want peace. Can't we all just get along---?"
"Slave! What difference do you think your protests mean to us? We don't require your moral measure to act as we will. We don't even recognize your political rights. Let us make a stepping stone of your skull instead!"
Prop Down Now Playing: "Lost Cause" by Beck
My man over at The Mudville Gazette has a post up about Iraqi War veteran ---and Democrat--- Paul Hackett, who has been forced out of the Senatorial race in Ohio so that the party big-shots can push Sherrod Brown instead.
Hackett was running against seven-term Akron Democrat Rep. Sherrod Brown in a May primary, with the winner going on to face two-term Republican Sen. Mike DeWine in November (assuming DeWine wins his own primary against a longshot Republican challenger). DeWine is considered one of the most vulnerable incumbent Republicans, and the national Democratic Party is pulling out the stops to defeat him.
But first, the Democrats had to get Hackett out of the way. The weapons used in the rubout included economic sabotage, whisper campaigns, and threats.
Apparently, Harry Reid was in on the rubout himself. He asked Hackett if the rumors were true that he had participated in war crimes while in Iraq. Hackett was appalled at this ---realizing then that the party bosses were trying to brush him off the plate.
Why is the Democratic Party shutting out one of its most justified voices in a year where they have the electoral momentum? The wrongness and the wastefulness and the bloodlustfulness of the War for Iraq is their constant refrain ---and they don't want to bring Hackett to the table to talk about it some more with the people of Ohio and America?
As a matter of fact, the high counsels of the Democratic Party have decided to not make the War for Iraq a point of contention for any Democratic candidate this cycle ---instead insisting that one's position on the war is a matter of individual conscience.
Maybe they have decided that the dissenting veteran gambit is a loser after Kerry went and failed in Ohio himself.
If you people don't want to see a one-party nation, how about trying sometimes? Even if you fail, at least have some balls to put up someone you believe in. It would make believing in you a lot more likely.