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  • Wednesday, November 30, 2005


    "Whatever it takes", indeed

    Pajama jerking Posted by Picasa

    VC Money Suckhole, LLC which hasn't had much to cheer about since they threw open the doors and started parading around the internets with their fly open, toilet paper stuck to their heel, and some spinach stuck between their teeth, is all giddy (along with fringe outsider/sock puppet Michelle Malkin and Short Bus Wall Street Journalist James Taranto) about moveon.org first using a photo of English soldiers and then photoshopping the picture to make it look like they were Americans in an anti-war ad.

    The blogosphere is agog over MoveOn.org's doctoring of a photo of a British soldier in British military shorts to make him look like an American in long-legged fatigues for the organization's new anti-war ad, which it has now pulled. As Mark in Mexico explains, first the group created a video that wrongly depicts "a scene in which a group of American soldiers are partaking of a meager Thanksgiving Day meal because they can't be home for the holidays." Then, GOP and College caught MoveOn compounding the fraud by altering the image for its online ad, replacing a British soldier's inconveniently obvious British shorts with U.S.-style fatigues. Say Anything displays the shorts in full, Bad Example offers a side-by-side comparison (see accompanying photo) plus a visual critique entitled "Pants by MC Escher," Generation Why links to the video, Michelle Malkin quotes the Army captain who spotted the fake and tipped off the Opinion Journal's James Taranto.

    Well there's nothing like being "agog" I hear, and someone at moveon should apologize before the 101st Fighting Keyboarders™ show up at moveon's palatial headquarters with pitchforks, torches, and Dan Rather's head on a pike. It is simply inexcusable to photoshop a picture in order to score cheap political points.

    You just know it's coming, don't you?

    Okay. Here you go:

    Appropriately titled "Whatever It Takes", the new BC04 ad uses Bush's convention acceptance speech, stirring music, and images of dedicated troops and families in the heartland. As astutely noted by mikellanes in this thread:

    It also uses Photoshopped images to turn a small crowd into a large one cover over Bush at a podium:

    (Courtesy of Kos) Posted by Picasa

    Torches flickering out, pitchforks drooping, Dan Rather's head back to the freezer.

    Story over.

    posted by tbogg at 8:42 PM



    Piss on their legs. Issue a storm warning.

    The Pentagon issues another press release. Posted by Picasa

    Via Roy, I see that Jeff Goldstein, who is kind of the Shemp of VC Money SuckHole, LLC (see above), thinks that a free press in Iraq is one that takes money from the US government to convince everyone that the explosions in the streets and the death squads and the secret prisons are really kind of a good thing and that the people of Iraq should come out, come out wherever they are and meet the nice Americans who fell from a star...or something like that:

    Anyway, a lot of sanctimonious posturing here. The truth of the matter is, we need to win the war before we can worry about leaving behind a pristine democracy, and what is happening here, it seems to me, is no different than, say, the LA Times or the New York Times reprinting press-releases from the anti-gun lobby—the difference being that while there is clearly a problem with such “journalism” in a free and long-established democratic republic (with an established “free” press), I’m not so sure I see “largely factual” pro-American “propaganda” as too much of a problem if it helps to burnish the image of Americans in the eyes of skeptical Iraqis long under the boot heel of a tyranical dictator—and in doing so, helps save soldiers lives and expedites the victory on the ground and the establishment of a strong and viable Iraqi government.

    Also, it bears noting here the the US military is working with willing Iraqi newspapers in an effort to thwart the insurgency by defeating them not just on the battlefield, but in the sphere of public perception.

    I read the President's Strategic Homilies and Dog & Pony Show white paper and I didn't see anything about glossing over the bad shit and paying journalists to lie as part of a "plan for victory".

    On the other hand I can see how "largely factual" might have some appeal to Jeff. I think it was on pages 7, 9, 13, 15-22, 26, and 33 of the Pajamarama business plan.

    (Added) Sorry. It was also on pages 3 and 36. I apologize for the omission.

    (Added...some more) Billmon explains it all for the not-as-self-deluded-as-Goldsteins of the world.

    posted by tbogg at 8:21 PM



    Sneaking Sammy through the alley

    Strip Search Sammy is one sneaky fuck:

    As a Reagan administration lawyer in 1985, Samuel Alito made clear his hope that the Supreme Court would one day overturn a landmark ruling that established abortion rights.

    But Alito, now a Supreme Court nominee, argued against an all-out assault on the Roe v. Wade ruling, fearing such an assault would fail. Instead, he recommended a policy of “mitigating its effects” by trying to persuade justices to accept state regulations on abortions.

    While working as an assistant to the solicitor general, Alito called for the office, which represents the federal government before the Supreme Court, to help defend provisions of the Pennsylvania Abortion Control Act. Some of the act’s provisions had been overturned by a panel of the 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in the case American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists v. Thornbur

    Alito wrote in the memo, released by the National Archives on Wednesday, that “no one seriously believes that the court is about to overrule Roe v. Wade.”

    But, he said, “By taking these cases, the court may be signaling an inclination to cut back. What can be made of this opportunity to advance the goals of bringing about the eventual overruling of Roe v. Wade and, in the meantime, of mitigating its effects?
    (my emphasis)

    One word: filibuster.

    Then this:

    Sen. Charles Schumer, D-N.Y. and a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, called the memo “stunning.”

    “These latest revelations cast serious doubt on whether Judge Alito can be at all objective on the right to privacy and a woman’s right to choose,” Schumer said.

    White House spokesman Steve Schmidt called Schumer’s criticism “unfair.”

    “Judge Alito should be evaluated on his 15 years of jurisprudence as a federal judge where he has authored hundreds of opinions,” Schmidt said. “On some of those cases, he has upheld abortion rights. In other cases he has not. To leap to conclusions and try to infer future decisions from 20-year-old memos borders on the silly.”

    AssRocket couldn't have said it any stupider.

    posted by tbogg at 1:36 PM



    If Bush couldn't be bothered, why should we?

    Unintentionally amusing email at The Corner:

    This guy catches my vibe:

    I have to agree with your assessment that the audience seemed "flatter" than most of Bush's military audiences usually are (and I was watching on Fox News). There was a thunderous ovation when he was introduced, but nothing equal to that during or after the speech. I guess it's pretty common knowledge that Bush is much better when he's "speaking" as opposed to "reading" which he was clearly doing during this speech. When he says something especially poignant (like mentioning Cpl. Starr's letter), I keep expecting him to stop reading for a minute, look out into the audience and at the cameras, address the lefty wackos and say something like, "are you getting this? Do you understand the magnitude of what's going on here? Are you really willing to insult this Cpl.'s life and death for your cheap little partisan bickering?" Something to that effect would just make a world of difference to people who don't watch these speeches all the time.
    (my emphasis)

    But George W. Bush couldn't be bothered because it's all theater to him...and bad theater at that.

    posted by tbogg at 1:22 PM



    He's just not that into you

    Jeannie Pirro is advised to maybe set her sights a little lower, maybe more Brent Baker and less Brad Pitt:

    Jeanine F. Pirro's bid to unseat Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton suffered an embarrassing setback on Tuesday when the State Legislature's most powerful Republican said she should call the whole thing off and run for state attorney general instead.

    The remarks by the official, Joseph L. Bruno, the majority leader of the State Senate, forced out into the open simmering concerns about Ms. Pirro's candidacy, which has been beset by gaffes and fund-raising difficulties. And it heightened the sense that the state Republican Party is nervous about its future and riven by squabbles as its de facto leader, Gov. George E. Pataki, prepares to step down at the end of next year.

    Mr. Bruno said that Ms. Pirro, who was elected Westchester district attorney three times, would be a better fit as a candidate for attorney general. "I have said from the beginning, and I know a lot of my colleagues, and people within the party, share the thought, that she would make a great attorney general," he said. "By background, by her experience, by her prosecutorial record. And I hope that before this procedure gets too much further, that Jeanine Pirro would reconsider and run for A.G."

    While Mr. Bruno's remarks echo what some Republicans have been murmuring quietly for some time now, they put him at odds with both Governor Pataki, who endorsed Ms. Pirro for the Senate last month, and the chairman of the state Republican Party, Stephen J. Minarik III, who is supporting her Senate candidacy.

    And while the remarks were hardly welcomed by the Pirro for Senate campaign, Ms. Pirro tried to put the best spin on it. "Senator Bruno is a respected majority leader and I appreciate his confidence in my abilities," she said in a terse, two-sentence written statement. "However, I am a candidate for U.S. Senate."

    Sure you are, hon. And you're such a sweet gal with a lovely smile and a great sense of humor. We're sure that there's a guy office out there for you somewhere, now run along.

    posted by tbogg at 8:52 AM


    Tuesday, November 29, 2005


    A kick in the heart

    I don't always link to all of the blogs on my left-hand list, because some of them are for my own enjoyment and are there so I don't have to bookmark them on the various computers I use. One of my personal favorites is Kelly Sedinger's Byzantium's Shores because Kelly always reminds me that it is still possible to be a good person in a world that is not so good. I try to read his blog before going to sleep at night because it's nice to go to bed thinking good thoughts and we can all use a little peace before sleep. Unfortunately peace will escape me tonight because I just read that his son, Little Quinn, passed away Monday morning after a too brief life.

    Please take the time to go read some of Kelly's posts on his son, as well as his graceful post on Little Quinn's passing, and maybe pass on a few good words to Kelly and his wife.

    posted by tbogg at 11:56 PM



    All the news that fits makes us look good

    Mmmmmmm. Wake up and smell the propaganda.... Posted by Picasa

    Professor JammyMan:

    IT'S A REVERSE-VIETNAM: On Reliable Sources I said that the Plame scandal was a reverse-Watergate, with the press, not the White House, keeping the important secrets about what happened. But looking at the transcript, I see that Iraq is also a reverse Vietnam, as made clear in this statement from UPI correspondent Pamela Hess:

    KURTZ: Welcome back to RELIABLE SOURCES.

    Pam Hess, during Vietnam U.S. officials were often accused of distorting or even lying to the press to try to make it look like the war effort was going better than it was. When you were in Iraq did you feel like you were getting the straight story?

    HESS: Certainly from the militarily I did. They have no interest in cooking the books, as it were, they -- they understand that they were blamed for Vietnam and what happened, and they don't want that blame again.

    They want people to understand the kind of enemy that they are facing and how long it's going to take. And frankly, most of them said to me, "Please go back and tell them not to pull us out because we are finally at a point where we have enough people here now on the ground between soldiers and Iraqis that we can actually start doing some good and start turning things around. And if you pull us out, we're just going to be back here three years from now."

    KURTZ: More optimistic, at least than some of the journalists.

    HESS: Yes.

    (See it on video here.) In Vietnam, the brass talked happy-talk, the press talked to grunts and reported that the war was going worse than we were told. But now it's Americans who are talking to the grunts, and, as StrategyPage noted last year, getting a different picture of how the war is going:

    So you don’t have to wait for the official version of what’s going on, or for reporters on the scene to get their stories to the folks back home. The troops send email, or pick up the phone, sometimes a cell phone, and call. This has caused a lot of confusion, because the media reports of what’s happening are often at odds with what the troops are reporting. This has been particularly confusing in a year where there’s a presidential election race going on. The Democrats decided to attack the way the war on terror, and particularly the actions in Iraq, was being fought. Part of that approach involved making the situation at the front sound really, really bad. But the troops over there seemed to be reporting a different war. And when troops came home, they were amazed at what they saw in the newspapers and electronic media. Politics and reality don’t mix.

    It's not surprising, then, that the more connection people have to the war, the better they think things are going. That's precisely the opposite of what we saw in Vietnam, of course.

    Maybe the troops have been reading their own clippings:

    As part of an information offensive in Iraq, the U.S. military is secretly paying Iraqi newspapers to publish stories written by American troops in an effort to burnish the image of the U.S. mission in Iraq.

    The articles, written by U.S. military "information operations" troops, are translated into Arabic and placed in Baghdad newspapers with the help of a defense contractor, according to U.S. military officials and documents obtained by the Los Angeles Times.

    Many of the articles are presented in the Iraqi press as unbiased news accounts written and reported by independent journalists. . The stories trumpet the work of U.S. and Iraqi troops, denounce insurgents, and tout U.S.-led efforts to rebuild the country.

    While the articles are basically truthful, they present only one side of events and omit information that might reflect poorly on the U.S. or Iraqi governments, officials said. Records and interviews indicate that the U.S. has paid Iraqi newspapers to run dozens of such articles -- with headlines such as "Iraqis Insist on Living Despite Terrorism" -- since the effort began this year.

    The operation is designed to mask any connection with the U.S. military. The Pentagon has a contract with a small Washington-based firm called Lincoln Group, which helps translate and place the stories. The Lincoln Group's Iraqi staff, or its subcontractors, sometimes pose as freelance reporters or advertising executives when they deliver the stories to Baghdad media outlets.

    Each Iraqi newspaper should come with a paper strip across it reading: Sanitized for your protection.

    posted by tbogg at 11:27 PM



    Groundhog Day

    Someone take the wheel Posted by Picasa


    Bush to lay out Iraq victory strategy

    November 14, 2005

    Bush takes on critics of Iraq war

    October 6, 2005

    Bush plans 'major speech' on Iraq, terrorism

    June 29, 2005

    Bush: Iraq 'vital' to U.S. security

    May 24, 2004

    Bush to Outline Iraq Plans

    Friday, May 21, 2004

    Bush to speak on Iraq handover process

    September 7, 2003


    The following is the entire text of President Bush's address to the nation defining Iraq as the "central front" in the global war on terrorism and asking Congress for an additional $87 billion to fund U.S. military operations in Iraq and Afghanistan.

    February 26, 2003

    Bush to outline Iraq plan tonight

    October 4, 2002

    President Bush will make a speech on Iraq to the nation the evening of Monday, October 7, from Cincinnati, Ohio

    Tomorrows speech should include the line:

    "look, if we built this large wooden Badger..."

    posted by tbogg at 10:25 PM



    Suckers or enablers? You make the call...

    The very right-leaning San Diego Union writes:

    Rep. Randy "Duke" Cunningham's five-year spree of bribery, conspiracy and income tax evasion, laid bare yesterday for the first time in a 33-page plea agreement with federal prosecutors, is a truly sickening spectacle.

    For an elected official, there is no greater breach of the public's trust than selling his office for private gain. In this instance, the sheer enormity of the Republican lawmaker's crimes demands a substantial prison sentence. U.S. District Judge Larry Burns, who will impose sentence on Feb. 27, should send a resounding message that such flagrant bribery will not be tolerated.

    Giving the UT credit for breaking the story, we should point out that the same SD Union editorial board reflexively endorsed the mediocre Cunningham eight times based on the fact that he was:

    A) A Republican
    B) A Top Gun Pilot
    C) A Republican

    And since we won't have the Duke to kick around anymore, I thought it would be fun to revisit a letter he wrote to the North County Times back before the last election:

    'Duke' does not apologize for his hard work

    I would like to personally respond to the politically motivated attacks on my character and my record of service that have been rampant in the Letters pages of this newspaper for several months.

    I would like to remind readers that these slanted letters have falsely manipulated my record to validate their arguments. If my opponents accuse me of being too concerned about the men and women who serve so valiantly in the military, then I am guilty. If they accuse me of being deeply concerned about terrorism at home and abroad and the safety of all Americans, then I suppose I am guilty of that as well. In the same way, I also admit guilt for investing in our children's education, working toward the advancement of medical research and providing tax relief to hardworking American families.

    As a member of Congress, I am faced daily with monumental decisions that affect our national security and foreign policy, the economy and education policy.

    The people of the 50th Congressional District know of my dedication, and my record speaks for itself. I will not back down from my positions, nor will I apologize for my hard work on behalf of San Diegans.


    member of Congress, 50th District

    Randy "Duke" Cunningham: Always guilty. Always apologizing.

    posted by tbogg at 9:31 PM



    Kill them all, let God sort them out.

    Well they looked terroristic.... Posted by Picasa

    Michael Fumento reminds us that we need to destroy the country and its people in order for the country and the now dead people to be free:

    Time again to try to cripple the U.S. military effort in Iraq. It's not enough that it sometimes seems like whenever we bomb a terrorist safe house we're accused of killing 40 civilians and no terrorists. (Why is it always 40?) Nor that we're told we must turn the prisons at Abu Ghraib and Guantanamo Bay into genteel facilities fit for Martha Stewart. Now the defeat-niks are screaming about our use of white phosphorus during the bloody battle for Fallujah last year.


    Regardless of the weapon, how can you possibly avoid noncombatant deaths when the enemy not only hides among civilians but hides as civilians — in total violation of the Geneva Convention, for those of you keeping track?

    Further, the dead civilians in the video are wearing clothing. Both the film's narrator and another of those defeat-nik "experts," former Marine Jeff Englehart, try to explain this away by saying WP can burn flesh while leaving clothes intact. But true weapons experts, such as GlobalSecurity.org Director John Pike, say there's no such black magic. "If it hits your clothes it will burn your clothes," he told reporters.

    As daily news reports illustrate in brilliant red Technicolor, the greatest threat to Iraqi civilians are the terrorists. If we want to save civilians, our soldiers must be free to use the best legal equipment available to kill those terrorists and to continue liberating Iraq.
    (my emphasis)

    ...even if we have to kill the civilians to get to the terrorists who are killing the civilians.

    I guess we should be thankful that Fumento isn't a hostage negotiator.

    posted by tbogg at 5:43 PM



    Department of Links I Will Never Ever Click On

    • At Outback brothels, it's 'G'day, granny!'

    Thanks MSNBC, but no thanks.

    I imagine the restaurant chain isn't to thrilled about it either...

    posted by tbogg at 11:44 AM


    Monday, November 28, 2005


    Hey! That's Vice President Nefarious Bastard to you, Sparky!

    No Number One Observatory Circle Christmas Happy Holidays card for you, Lawrence Wilkerson:

    A top aide to former Secretary of State
    Colin Powell said Monday that wrongheaded ideas for the handling of foreign detainees arose from White House and Pentagon officials who argued that "the president of the United States is all-powerful" and the Geneva Conventions irrelevant.

    In an Associated Press interview, former Powell chief of staff Lawrence Wilkerson also said President Bush was "too aloof, too distant from the details" of postwar planning. Underlings exploited Bush's detachment and made poor decisions, Wilkerson said.

    Wilkerson blamed Vice President Dick Cheney, Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld and like-minded aides. He said Cheney must have sincerely believed that Iraq could be a spawning ground for new terror assaults, because "otherwise I have to declare him a moron, an idiot or a nefarious bastard."

    posted by tbogg at 11:37 PM



    You can't make a democracy omelet without breaking a few legs...and shooting people ...and using electric drills on them

    (courtesy of the WaPoPosted by Picasa

    Who knew that when we said we wanted to make Iraq more democratic, we meant allowing everyone to torture and murder:

    As the American military pushes the largely Shiite Iraqi security services into a larger role in combating the insurgency, evidence has begun to mount suggesting that the Iraqi forces are carrying out executions in predominantly Sunni neighborhoods.

    Hundreds of accounts of killings and abductions have emerged in recent weeks, most of them brought forward by Sunni civilians, who claim that their relatives have been taken away by Iraqi men in uniform without warrant or explanation.

    Some Sunni men have been found dead in ditches and fields, with bullet holes in their temples, acid burns on their skin, and holes in their bodies apparently made by electric drills. Many have simply vanished.

    Some of the young men have turned up alive in prison. In a secret bunker discovered earlier this month in an Interior Ministry building in Baghdad, American and Iraqi officials acknowledged that some of the mostly Sunni inmates appeared to have been tortured.

    Welcome to Abattoiraq: An American Experiment Gone Horribly Awry.

    posted by tbogg at 11:34 PM



    I picked a bad life to be an atheist

    The lovely and talented Casey was granted a drivers license today by the great state of California. For those still on speaking terms with God, the FSM, or the benign imaginary cosmic presence of your choice: pray for me.

    posted by tbogg at 11:30 PM



    Dropping your standard of living as fast as they'll let us

    Lower salaries, guaranteed... Posted by Picasa

    It's days like this when I'm thankful that John Tierney is hidden behind the Wall of Pay To Be Appalled:

    The Good Goliath
    Published: November 29, 2005

    Wal-Mart has been one of the most successful antipoverty programs in America.

    Oh, Jeebus:

    California Assemblywoman Sally Lieber, who represents the 22nd Assembly District and is a former mayor of Mountain View, was outraged when she learned about the sex-discrimination charges in Dukes v. Wal-Mart, and she smelled blood when, tipped off by dissatisfied workers, her office discovered that Wal-Mart was encouraging its workers to apply for public assistance, "in the middle of the worst state budget crisis in history!" California had a $38 billion deficit at the time, and Lieber was enraged that taxpayers would be subsidizing Wal-Mart's low wages, bringing new meaning to the term corporate welfare.

    Lieber was angry, too, that Wal-Mart's welfare dependence made it nearly impossible for responsible employers to compete with the retail giant. It was as if taxpayers were unknowingly funding a massive plunge to the bottom in wages and benefits -- quite possibly their own. She held a news conference in July 2003, to expose Wal-Mart's welfare scam. The Wal-Mart documents -- instructions on how to apply for food stamps, Medi-Cal (the state's health care assistance program) and other forms of welfare -- were blown up on poster board and displayed. The morning of the news conference, a Wal-Mart worker who wouldn't give her name for fear of being fired snuck into Lieber's office. "I just wanted to say, right on!" she told the assemblywoman.

    Wal-Mart spokespeople have denied that the company encourages employees to collect public assistance, but the documents speak for themselves. They bear the Wal-Mart logo, and one is labeled "Wal-Mart: Instructions for Associates." Both documents instruct employees in procedures for applying to "Social Service Agencies."

    Most Wal-Mart workers I've interviewed had co-workers who worked full time for the company and received public assistance, and some had been in that situation themselves. Public assistance is very clearly part of the retailer's cost-cutting strategy. (It's ironic that a company so dependent on the public dole supports so many right-wing politicians who'd like to dismantle the welfare state.)

    Lieber, a strong supporter of the social safety net who is now assistant speaker pro tempore of the California Assembly, last year supported a bill that would require large and midsized corporations that fail to provide decent, affordable health insurance to reimburse local governments for the cost of providing public assistance for those workers. When the bill passed, its opponents decided to kill it by bringing it to a statewide referendum. Wal-Mart, which just began opening Supercenters in California this year, mobilized its resources to revoke the law on Election Day in November, even while executives denied that any of their employees depended on public assistance.

    In addition, I guess Tierney never reads the rest of the NY Times editorial pages:

    Southern California's supermarket chains have reacted by demanding a two-year freeze on current workers' salaries and lower pay for newly hired workers, and they want employees to pay more for health insurance. The union counters that if the supermarkets match Wal-Mart, their workers will be pushed out of the middle class. Those workers are already only a step - or a second family income - from poverty, with wages of roughly $18,000 a year. Wal-Mart sales clerks make about $14,000 a year, below the $15,060 poverty line for a family of three.

    Wal-Mart may also be driving down costs by using undocumented immigrants. Last month, federal agents raided Wal-Marts in 21 states. Wal-Mart is facing a grand jury investigation, and a civil racketeering class-action filed by cleaners who say they were underpaid when working for contractors hired by Wal-Mart. Wal-Mart insists that it was unaware of its contractors' practices. But aware or not, it may have helped to deprive legally employable janitors of jobs and adequate pay.

    This Wal-Martization of the work force, to which other low-cost, low-pay stores also contribute, threatens to push many Americans into poverty. The first step in countering it is to enforce the law. The government must act more vigorously, and more quickly, when Wal-Mart uses illegal tactics to block union organizing. And Wal-Mart must be made to pay if it exploits undocumented workers.

    Unions understand that the quickest way to win this war is to organize Wal-Mart workers. And Wal-Mart's competitors have to strive for Wal-Mart's efficiency without making workers bear the brunt. Consumers can also play a part. Wal-Mart likes to wrap itself in American values. It should be reminded that one of those is paying workers enough to give their families a decent life.

    If Tierney weren't already a known Butt-boy for Big Bidness we would swear he was a graduate of the WalMart War Room.

    posted by tbogg at 9:40 PM



    Like Disneyland for John Negroponte

    War is swell:

    'People are doing the same as [in] Saddam's time and worse,' Ayad Allawi told The Observer. 'It is an appropriate comparison. People are remembering the days of Saddam. These were the precise reasons that we fought Saddam and now we are seeing the same things.'

    In a damning and wide-ranging indictment of Iraq's escalating human rights catastrophe, Allawi accused fellow Shias in the government of being responsible for death squads and secret torture centres. The brutality of elements in the new security forces rivals that of Saddam's secret police, he said.

    ...Allawi's bleak assessment is likely to undermine any attempt to suggest that conditions in Iraq are markedly improving.

    'We are hearing about secret police, secret bunkers where people are being interrogated,' he added. 'A lot of Iraqis are being tortured or killed in the course of interrogations. We are even witnessing Sharia courts based on Islamic law that are trying people and executing them.'

    Freedom is no longer on the march. It's in full retreat.

    posted by tbogg at 8:23 AM



    Die Hard...at the boxoffice

    Bombs over Hollywood. Posted by Picasa

    Citing the success of pro-war film The Passion of the Christ, the Hollywood editors of Open Robe Media are engorged with warlust and, since they have their finger on the pulse of the American heartland after flying over it two weeks ago to get sloppy drunk in New York, they think the time is right for a rah-rah all-American Mission Accomplished movie:

    Die Hard star Bruce Willis is taking on two Hollywood traditions in his attempt, reported by the Timesonline Sunday, to make a pro-war feature film about United States involvement in Iraq. Willis is bucking a nearly unbroken skein of Tinseltown anti-war films that goes back to such Vietnam era favorites as Coming Home and Platoon. And the actor is doing it not with mainstream media source material, but basing his movie on the reporting of a blogger - former Green Beret Michael Yon. Chosen by Willis for his story is Yon's on the scene reporting of the heroics of the Deuce Four unit in Mosul, Iraq.

    As Hollywood insiders would tell you, however, despite the participation of a bankable star, the film is still far from making it to the silver screen. Nevetheless, blogs are weighing in heavily in support of Willis, and of Yon, as if the movie were already a fait accompli. Betsy's Page has praise for Yon and wishes Willis luck. Captain's Quarters sees the potential movie as an antidote to the "idiotic Constant Gardner." The Bernoulli Effect wonders if its the next The Passion of the Christ. PJMedia's RogerLSimon also sees box office gold, if the film is made, and relates its potential to a poll in the Washington Post. And The Minefield is just plain "excited!"

    Little word so far from liberal blogs that are probably hoping the project dies in what is known in Hollywood as "Development Hell."

    Well it would be unkind of us to wish that it dies in "development hell" since it already comes with a deathwish of it's own in the name of Bruce Willis who is a decade past his action hero days...unless you're one of the few, the proud, the couldn't get into the movie you really wanted to see, and saw Hart's War or Tears of the Sun.

    And Jeebus knows that the American public is just clamoring for flag-waving war movies like The Great Raid which pulled down a whopping $10 million at the American box office; not that the folks who green-light movies take such things into account. But Captain Cubicle gives it a thumbs-up because it's not like non-war movie The Constant Gardener and Roger "Scenes From A Mall" Simon sees "box-office gold" which kind of speaks for itself, so if the movie doesn't make it to the screen it's because Hollywood is objectively pro-terrorist and hates it when movies make lots of money like Saving Private Ryan

    On the other hand, they could get Jason Apuzzo to direct and that guy who wrote Scooby Doo to write the screenplay.

    I smell a hit.

    Well, I smell something...

    posted by tbogg at 6:49 AM


    Sunday, November 27, 2005


    The nimble legal mind at work and play

    The lesser of the three AssRockets at Power Line (that would be Paul the goofy goofier goofiest looking one) shares how a crack mind forged in the fires of Dartmouth and Stanford can reach the most logical conclusions that elude the reality-based riff raff:

    McCain is fond of asserting that you can't get reliable information through torture. In doing so, he relies on his experience in North Vietnam. However, the ineffectiveness of the crude tactics of his prison guards of 40 years ago does not demonstrate that the tactics available to us today are ineffective. In fact, it appears that our tactics worked well with Khalid Sheikh Mohammed. If they didn't work, why would Vice President Cheney and our top military leaders be so insistent on not taking them off the table. Surely McCain does not buy into the notion that Cheney takes the position he does because he is evil. In fact, as noted above, McCain's position isn't really that different from Cheney's. It's just that Cheney is willing to take the heat for defending tactics that will save lives. In this instance, Cheney, not McCain, is the American hero.

    And sometimes torture is not so effective

    At least 108 people have died in American custody in Iraq and Afghanistan, most of them violently, according to government data provided to The Associated Press. Roughly a quarter of those deaths have been investigated as possible abuse by U.S. personnel.

    It is important to note that, although they died, the cause of their deaths wasn't "crude".

    We're Americans, afterall....

    posted by tbogg at 11:24 PM



    Talking prayer smack

    Arms too short to box with no one Posted by Picasa

    Apparently there is a movement afoot in America to rould up all the Christians and nail them to crosses and then feed them to lions and then burn their bones in bonfires made of confiscated Bibles... and I never got the memo.

    At least that's the impression I get from christianunderground who are all, like, "bring it unto me, man" and I'm all, like, "who are you? Stop bothering me. Go away." and they're all, like, "I mean it, man. You're in for a world of peril cuz we're not gonna be kept down by the dominant atheistic culture", and I'm all, like...well, walking away because I don't give a shit.... and then they go out late at night for drive-by proselytizing.

    A big fan (Mike Sewell) of their website sent them some handy advice:


    Pray to your gods wherever you want. Just don't make me do it, or tell me about it. I don't find it as interesting as you do.

    Also, try not to pray in the middle of the street or in major throughways. A recent report has stated that traffic jams cost the Ontario public 4 billion per year in lost income, gas, etc. Delaying everyone isn't very productive.

    Please don't pray in libraries, unless you do so silently. People are trying to read.

    Prayer in subways or on major transit is not reccomended, neither is falling asleep. You should keep an eye on your belongings.

    Depending on your job, prayer may not always be welcome there, either. For example, if you are a telemarketer or working in a phonce centre, asking your client if you can take 5 minutes to pray while they're on the phone is not considerate. As well, if you're an airline pilot or a bus driver, taking a timeout to pray may shake your passengers' faith in your ability to drive.

    Rules for praying in movie theatres follow the rules for praying in libraries.

    Please to not stop to pray while filling your gas tank. People are waiting behind you.

    Prayer in prison may make you a target for rape. Just saying.

    Praying in the middle of class could get you kicked out, and rightly so. The prof needs your full attention.

    If someone asks you if you could pray somewhere else, keep in mind what it looks like you're doing. It appears that you're talking to yourself, which can put a normal person at unease. At all possible, try holding a cellphone while praying. That will definitely help with the creepiness factor.

    Also, if asks you if you could pray somewhere else, or not to pray, or says that prayer is stupid because you're only talking to yourself, they are not persecuting you. Feeding you to a lion is persecuting you. Asking you to pray in your church or home is not. I, personally, enjoy singing showtunes. If I did it in the middle of a church, I wouldn't feel persecuted if someone asked me to stop.

    Please don't tell non-religious people thay your praying for them or their souls. It's silly. Plus, we all know it's actually a veiled insult.

    Your corpse nailed to a board is disturbing, and I don't necessarily think kids should see it. Again, just saying. Worshipping it is all well and good, but don't be surprised if other people feel the same way as I do.

    Have fun with your website,

    Mike Sewell

    ...and they asked that people pray for Mike.

    I guess they missed that part about it being a veiled insult, them being fighters and not readers and such.

    posted by tbogg at 10:58 PM



    Looka me! Looka me!

    At the risk of calling attention to a booger-eating spaz who says profoundly stupid things just to get people to pay attention to him, here we have Vox Day, the "Christian Libertarian commentator from WorldNetDaily" on rape (I refuse to link to the post)

    The reason many people believe a woman is at least partly responsible for her own victimization is because in many cases that is demonstrably true. In no other circumstance is it argued that a victim of a crime is must be considered wholly innocent of responsibility regardless of his actions - just ask your insurance company if you don't believe me. As Camille Paglia pointed out, a woman who gets drunk and goes to a man's bedroom deserves no more sympathy or understanding from society than the man who leaves his unlocked car running with the key in the ignition or the woman who leaves her purse unattended on a public park bench.

    Now, this responsibility doesn't make the thief any less a thief, or a genuine rapist any less a rapist. (I use the term "genuine rape" because most so-called "date rape" is not rape nor a crime of any kind, because he said-she said is no basis for a system of justice. If sex without written permission is a crime, then all sex is rape and all men are unrepentant criminals.) Responsibility is not a zero-sum game.

    Women have demanded freedom from paternalistic protection they enjoyed/endured in the past. Now they've got it, and many of them are finding that they don't like it and thus have, as usual, turned to the State in search of the security they crave so badly.

    I have to confess that I don't understand this ceaseless quest for victimhood. Being raped doesn't confer some mystical moral superiority on a woman, it just makes her a victim. And unfortunately, in all too many cases, it just makes her a stupid one.

    Normally we would make a glib comment that Vox isn't getting much, or has "issues", or some other one-liner that is supposed to diminish him to, if not fringe status, a base object of ridicule. But it's pretty obvious from reading other posts on his blog that he's doing it for the attention. He has nothing to say, he's not particularly bright, he's a waste of time and bandwith which is why I didn't post the link. Day isn't stupid, but the fact that he isn't stupid doesn't make him any less of an idiot.

    And he is an idiot.

    posted by tbogg at 10:35 PM


    Saturday, November 26, 2005


    The Battle of Warren County Community College

    Jason Mattera, who is fighting for the culture because it doesn't entail danger or death or doing anything that might make him piddle his pants, takes down an obscure professor and proceeds to do his wardance:

    Warren County Community College adjunct English professor, John Daly resigned last night before the school's board of trustees began an emergency meeting to discuss the professor's fate. On November 13, Daly sent an email to student Rebecca Beach vowing "to expose [her] right-wing, anti-people politics until groups like [Rebecca's] won't dare show their face on a college campus." In addition, Daly said that "Real freedom will come when soldiers in Iraq turn their guns on their superiors."


    "More colleges and universities need to follow the lead of WCCC and integrate tolerance training for insensitive leftists," says Young America's Foundation Spokesman Jason Mattera. "John Daly is yet another Ward Churchill. Academia is filled with intolerant leftists who openly show hostility toward conservatism."

    Daly's email to Rebecca came after she sent a note to faculty announcing the appearance of decorated war hero Lt. Col. Scott Rutter to discuss America's accomplishments in Iraq.

    Young America's Foundation will continue to monitor and expose similar instances of leftist intolerance through our online service, "Activist 411 - Activism Made Easy." This resource helps students, like Rebecca Beach, by providing them with advice on how to advance conservative ideas effectively and reveal intolerant professors, administrators, and other left-wing elements who attempt to intimidate and silence young conservative activists.

    Ooooooo. Jason nailed an adjunct English professor at a JuCo. He's the Sgt. Fucking York of the War On Terror That Doesn't Include Actual Fighting or Danger (WOTTDIAFOD).

    You may remember Jason from this memorable exchange:

    MATTHEWS: Welcome back.

    Here at HARDBALL, we salute everyone at every age getting involved in politics, obviously. So, we brought together two young leaders to tell us what they think of politics today. Chris Galloway is president of the Young Democrats of America. And Jason Mattera is the spokesman for the Young America‘s Foundation, which is a conservative group.

    Jason, you‘re 21, right?


    MATTHEWS: And how old are you, Chris Galloway?



    Let me ask you about—both you gentlemen, but starting with you, Jason. What are you guys—what do people your age think about the war in Iraq right now, as it is going, as we‘re fighting this to try to get the Iraqis to take over the fighting? What‘s the view of your group?

    MATTERA: I think my group is supporting President Bush on this matter. We‘re looking to defeat the terrorists.

    MATTHEWS: Where? In Iraq.

    MATTERA: In Iraq. Of course in Iraq.

    And there—you won‘t see on college campuses, as you did in the 1960s, these rampant protests, these obstruction of classroom, these—the book burning, everything that went down. I think kids are more conservative today. And I think groups such as the Young America‘s Foundation help that—help mold that conservatism.

    MATTHEWS: Would you like to enlist them? You‘re 21. You‘re eligible to serve. Would you like to serve in this war?

    MATTERA: I‘m fighting the battle for ideas. I‘m fighting...


    MATTHEWS: No, I‘m just asking a particular question. Would you like to enlist in this war?

    MATTERA: No, because I‘m fighting a separate battle. I‘m fighting—we‘re fighting the culture war here, but I‘m also supporting the battle that‘s raging in Iraq.

    MATTHEWS: Well, what kind of people should fight in this war, if not you?

    MATTERA: Those who want to, those who want—who feel the desire, who have the passion to go over to Iraq. I have many friends who are in Iraq myself, people from my church, people who I graduated with.

    MATTHEWS: Yes.

    MATTERA: They went to go fight over there. I‘m here. I‘m fighting

    the culture war right now. Both need to be fought and both need to be won

    by conservatives.

    MATTHEWS: Paul Hackett, a Democratic candidate for Congress who just lost that close election in Ohio, referred to the president as a chicken hawk, somebody who supports war, but doesn‘t fight it. What do you think of that phrase, chicken hawk?

    MATTERA: I don‘t like the phrase chicken hawk.


    MATTHEWS: Why not?

    MATTERA: Because it doesn‘t fit. I don‘t think President Bush...

    MATTHEWS: It means you talk hawk, but you act chicken.

    MATTERA: Yes, I understand that, but I don‘t think that President Bush is a chicken hawk.


    Laugh all you want monkey-boy, Jason has popped his cherry and now he's a made man.

    Well, maybe "man" is too strong of a word, but you get the idea....

    posted by tbogg at 10:39 AM


    Friday, November 25, 2005


    I was the fifth Beatle

    Misty watercolored memories that belong to someone else.

    posted by tbogg at 11:14 PM




    The sign says it all Posted by Picasa

    Open Robe Media.

    Just when you thought it couldn't get any worse.

    I mean besides reading Ed Driscoll who can make the dead yawn.

    posted by tbogg at 8:51 PM



    Next thing you know they'll be crucifying our savior.

    LL Cooljesus is on the hizzizzlevelope, yo. Posted by Picasa

    It's Black Friday, so let the "They're trying to destroy Christmas" apocrypha begin:

    So she stops by her local US Post Office a few days ago then asks the man behind the counter for this year's Christmas stamps. He pulls out a sheet of something called Holiday Cookies. To know my mom is to know that she has never indulged in cutesy stuff. Every year she always selects the Christmas stamp that features a classic painting of Madonna and Child. She asks if they have any classic Christmas stamps and the man pulls out a couple of sheets of last year's Madonna and Child. Mom notices he doesn't seem happy and he says to her, "These are all I have and they'll be the last you ever see." Mom asks, "What do you mean?" He explains the USPS will not be issuing any more "religious" stamps.


    Mom is momentarily stunned. She then raises her eyebrows a bit and asks, "Are you allowed to say 'Merry Christmas' to us?"

    The man's face falls and he lowers his voice in answer, "No. We can only say 'Happy Holidays,'" he tries to smile at her, "But if you say 'Merry Christmas' to me directly I will respond in kind."

    Because nothing says "Happy Birthday, Jesus!" like a picture of his mom with Moline, 61625 stamped across her face.

    posted by tbogg at 7:11 PM



    Shorter AssRocket

    Every non-ideological organization in America has been overtaken by concerned and knowledgeable people who don't share my world view... so we should ignore them.

    posted by tbogg at 6:42 AM



    Friday Random Ten

    Park Avenue
    - Girls Against Boys
    Checkout Blues - Eels
    Cold Blue Steel and Sweet Fire - Joni Mitchell
    Holiday - Green Day
    Spanish Bombs - The Clash
    One of the Millions - XTC
    At The Bottom of Everything - Bright Eyes
    Homeless - Paul Simon
    Hand In Glove - The Smiths
    The Heart of Saturday Night - Tom Waits

    If you're thinking Christmas present for any of your music buddies, you could do a lot worse than this, no matter what their musical tastes are.

    It would be nice to see more box sets based on songwriters instead of the performing artist... Dianne Warren excepted.

    Jesus. I just scared myself.

    posted by tbogg at 6:14 AM



    Smirky McPantload

    I'm sure that someone at the LA Times is proud of the hiring of Jonah Goldberg:

    BEHOLD: We have entered the Age When Dinos and Rinos Rule the Earth. See them battle each other for absolute dominion!

    Though this might sound like a cool monster mash of the "Mechagodzilla versus Godzilla" variety, it's a good deal less exciting and more depressing, like a taste test between 2% milk and soy milk. What we are witnessing is the dawn of the boring phase of the Great Republican Realignment, and it promises to have liberals and conservatives alike going bonkers.

    I should back up. Dinos, of course, are "Democrats in Name Only." Rinos are their GOP counterparts. Nobody actually ever admits to being a Republican in name only. Rather, these are epithets used to describe politicians of insufficient ideological purity or partisan backbone. Think David Gergen without the smoldering sexual intensity. Or, if you can't, think moderates, squishes, apostates, New York Times-pleasing "mavericks," centrists and all the others who want to "get beyond labels" or get a standing ovation from the Brookings Institution.

    Galloping toward the center is nothing new in American politics. The parties have always regressed to the mean. The center of gravity is in the, uh, center. What's changed is that the center has — finally — been moving an eensy bit to the right.

    I just can't imagine why.

    posted by tbogg at 6:07 AM


    Thursday, November 24, 2005


    Me Talk Pretty One Day

    Even if it is community property,
    nobody wants a People's Choice Award.
     Posted by Picasa

    Jessica Simpson doesn't have the true trainwreck quality of a Mariah Carey or Britney Spears (and by the way, all right-thinking people get their Britney fix here at the best damn site on the internets) so I pretty much avoid anything having to do with her. Like Paris Hilton she has one look for the camera, the Runway-Rictus Smile, that makes her...unappealing in any way shape or form. Having said that, you have to love her way with words that makes it look like the she just graduated to the english language months ago after a lifetime of burbling and cooing.

    U.S. Weekly first reported their split in its Oct. 17 issue.

    The couple denied the report. In the December-January issue of Teen People, which went on newsstands earlier this month, Simpson again denied rumors that the marriage was over.

    "Hopefully mine and Nick's story will continue for the rest of our lives, like what we vowed, through sickness and in health," she said.

    We imagine that Simpson's publicist probably tried to get that quote 'clarified' but in all likelihood gave up and started drinking heaviliy.

    Can't say that I blame them.

    posted by tbogg at 10:44 PM



    "They worship a flirty drag queen named Angel."

    Lose the faggots and the coloreds and I think you might
    be on to something...
     Posted by Picasa

    Via Rotten Tomatoes, we see that someone has some issues with both the play and the movie version of Rent:

    I hated every 135 minutes of it. Heroic HIV-positive New Yorkers who do nothing and do not want to pay rent. They worship a flirty drag queen named Angel.
    Victoria Alexander

    My weekly column, “The Devil’s Hammer,” appears every Monday on FromTheBalcony.com. Victoria Alexander’s “Movies, Gossip & Sin” is on XRadio.biz Fridays from Noon to 2 P.M.

    Creator, author and composer Jonathan Larson died the night of final dress rehearsal of an aortic aneurysm before his 36th birthday. RENT became a sensation first off and on Broadway earning a Tony Award and Pulitzer Prize. I’m shocked that a musical about AIDS, heroin, and squatters could become the eighth longest running musical in Broadway history with over 4,000 performances. It has grossed more than $210 million in New York alone. After seeing the movie, I’m glad I didn’t go to the Las Vegas performances of this acknowledged worldwide phenomenon.

    I understand that the musical has a huge following, but the movie RENT will not. Why hail the lives of a group of people who do nothing, engage in sexually risky behavior, get terminally ill, and refuse to pay their rent? Because they feel that it is only important to love and let someone else pay the Con Ed bill? To find this “truth,” these misfits have traversed a lifestyle of anonymous, multiple sex partners and needle drugs. Larson ignores what made this group of sweet kids damaged souls of hopelessness.


    I didn’t like the music. I know it is sacrilegious to write anything negative about RENT (as the show-stopping song goes, “but I am who I am”). And, like the SERENITY and PHANTOM OF THE OPERA fans, I am sure I will hear from everyone who ever brought a ticket to RENT and cried. After all, it is a musical about HIV-positive young people who haven’t a care in the world. The creator died at 36 years old of an aortic aneurysm before enjoying the perks of creating the first Gay AIDS musical.

    Finally, someone who makes Govindini Murtry look like Pauline Kael...

    The girls are off at another soccer tournament this weekend but we have plans to go see Rent on Sunday, Chris Columbus or no Chris Columbus. We saw the West Coast premiere back in 1997 at the La Jolla Playhouse with Michael Greif directing.

    posted by tbogg at 9:49 PM



    It's right next door to Karen Hughes Petite Sophisticate Shoppe

    Everyone, and I mean everyone right or left, is going to be on this like Jonah on the last Ding-Dong:

    Former FEMA Director Michael Brown, heavily criticized for his agency's slow response to Hurricane Katrina, is starting a disaster preparedness consulting firm to help clients avoid the sort of errors that cost him his job.

    "If I can help people focus on preparedness, how to be better prepared in their homes and better prepared in their businesses -- because that goes straight to the bottom line -- then I hope I can help the country in some way," Brown told the Rocky Mountain News for its Thursday editions.

    Brown said officials need to "take inventory" of what's going on in a disaster to be able to answer questions to avoid appearing unaware of how serious a situation is.

    In the aftermath of the hurricane, critics complained about Brown's lack of formal emergency management experience and e-mails that later surfaced showed him as out of touch with the extent of the devastation. (Watch Brown is chosen as top 'political turkey' of the year -- 2:58)

    The lawyer admits that while he was head of the Federal Emergency Management Agency mistakes were made in the response to Katrina. He also said he had been planning to quit before the hurricane hit.

    I'm sure this guy can appreciate the fact that Brown was going to be quitting anyway.

    Okay. So maybe a few unsatisfied customers.... Posted by Picasa

    posted by tbogg at 9:34 PM



    ThursdayThanksgiving Night Basset Blogging

    Sometimes big ears just mean big ears... Posted by Picasa

    Neither Beckham or Satchmo was feeling very photogenic today so we reached back into the archives.

    posted by tbogg at 9:29 PM



    No thanks. I'll try the White Phosphorous Brule instead

    Well, now we know what kind of pie to use if she ever goes on a book tour, because we're Unhinged! I tells ya. Unhinged!

    Seriously though...that sounds just friggin' horrible. Garnish with fried Snickers chunks and you'l have hit the white trash trifecta.

    posted by tbogg at 10:49 AM



    Later there will be an admonishment, a stern warning ,
    and a ball-shrivelling look

    "Don't make me come over there..." Posted by Picasa

    Glad to see that John Bolton has been putting in the long hours at the UN, making a difference:

    The United Nations Security Council Wednesday condemned Hezbollah for its attack Monday on Israel.

    “This condemnation - slamming Hizbullah by name for ‘acts of hatred’ - marked the first time the Security Council has ever reprimanded Hezbullah for cross-border attacks on Israel. The condemnation followed by two days a failed attempt to get a condemnation issued …When asked what changed from Monday to Wednesday, one diplomatic official replied: ‘John Bolton.’ …

    “The statement against Hizbullah came just a few weeks after the Security Council condemned Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad for his call to wipe Israel off the map. That was also a precedent-setting condemnation, marking the first time the UN body ever condemned an Islamic state for statements against Israel.”

    Isn’t astonishing what can be accomplished by an individual who has principles, conviction, guts and determination?

    And wouldn’t it be nice if those who opposed Bolton would now acknowledge that they were wrong? But you know how those folks are: They never admit mistakes.

    So when's the bombing begin?

    posted by tbogg at 9:24 AM



    Today I am thankful that I didn't invest $3.5 million in this

    Not to keep piling on Pajamas Media (not that they don't bring it on themrselves) but this, like a Vincent Gallo movie, is so horrible that it's actually funny in a sad pathetic kind of way.

    Timeless wit sample:

    #130 Jeff Goldstein at November 24, 2005 08:17 AM

    The Mr Potatohead balloon is wearing running shoes. Why? Who would chase a potato?

    Not me.

    #131 Jeff Goldstein at November 24, 2005 08:18 AM

    Okay, maybe I would chase a potato. But only if it provoked me

    Somewhere in Silicon Valley a rich guy with bad taste is wondering why he didn't invest his money in Asian poultry futures....

    posted by tbogg at 9:05 AM


    Wednesday, November 23, 2005


    Tomorrows BLOGJAM! Today

    The New New Media Posted by Picasa

    Like children waiting for Christmas morning to come, we sit by the virtual fireplace that is our CRT on Thanksgiving Eve and await tomorrows BLOGJAM!

    When we left the previous BLOGJAM! we discovered that nothing much was learned other than the fact that LaShawn Barber can make herself invisible in a roomful of men. During tomorrows BLOGJAM! we can expect:

    ...the story of Pajamas Media's journey to OSM and back again. A fast-moving, live, online debate, this blogjam features Glenn Reynolds, Adam Bellow, Cliff May and Tammy Bruce.

    Because everything has gone so swimmingly well at PajamaOSMPajamas Media (I assume that you have already heard that going to the OSM site can cause Compaq brand computers to burst into flames. Oh that's right. The MSM doesn't want you to know about that. Never mind. Carry on.) it was probably a good idea for them to actually do the online debate on Wednesday night to avoid any unsightly glitches or what Charles Johnson calls, "so-called raghead religion of peace shenanigans" that might make the editorial board look, well, stupider than usual. Through the magic of kerning and internets browser technology and a little thing that we like to call "making shit up", we bring you some outtakes from the OSM BLOGJAM! so that you can go back to eating or watching football or trying to give youself a home brazilian wax. You know which one you are.

    Anyway, here you go:

    #8 Adam Bellow at November 24, 2005 12:31 PM

    I think the attacks on Pajama Media are completely unfair, similar to what I had to endure when I wrote "In Praise of Nepotism: A History of Family Enterprise from King David to George W. Bush" and people smirked and pointed out that my dad was Saul Bellow. I still don't get that.

    #9 Cliff May at November 24, 2005 12:38 PM

    You know it was Joe Wilson's idea to name it OSM, and we know what kind of craphound he is. He'll just deny it, the big liar.

    #10 Glenn Reynolds at November 24, 2005 12:41 PM

    Dean Esmay has some interesting observations here that I haven't read yet, but I'm sure they reveal that the Democrats have no plan for a blogging media empire of their own, much less any idea of which digital camera the Instawife will be buying for me this Christmas. Hugh Hewitt has some suggestions for her. More on the cameras at Bill Quick's place.

    What the hell were we talking about again?

    #11 Tammy Bruce at November 24, 2005 12:50 PM

    Any of you guys want to go look for chicks?

    #12 Cliff May at November 24, 2005 12:53 PM

    For me Pajamas Media is the next step in the logical progression that has me moving from the New York Times to the Rocky Mountain News to NRO's Corner and now here. It's like I'm finally home...unless something opens up at the Pennysaver.

    #13 Adam Bellow at November 24, 2005 12:56 PM

    I'm trying to get John Cheever's daughter, Robert James Waller's nephew, and this guy who used to mow JD Salingers cousin's lawn to join OSM. Oh, and Tom Clancy's paperboy because he has old media credibility.

    #14 Glenn Reynolds at November 24, 2005 1:03 PM

    I'm sorry. I had to go take a crap and I got so engrossed in Terry Brooks' Morgawr that I forgot about you guys. For more on Terry Brooks read this post by Mark Steyn, and Jeff Goldstein has some amusing stories about crapping here here here and here.

    #15 Cliff May at November 24, 2005 1:10 PM

    I'm only 4 foot nine and before I grew the beard everyone used to think I was that guy in The Station Agent. On weekends I have to put on gnome clothes and sit in Mr. Buckley's herb garden, so I can really use the money here.

    #16 Tammy Bruce at November 24, 2005 1:15 PM

    Personally I love the fact that the name changed back to Pajamas Media. It looks really cool on my business cards. The OSM name needed to be aborted and you guys know I'm down with that ;). Do you think that Portia de Rossi thinks I'm pretty?

    #17 Glenn Reynolds at November 24, 2005 1:22 PM

    Megan McArdle weighs in on Portia de Rossi here. Mickey Kaus has some additional thoughts and wonders if he can watch. Indeed. Don't we all.

    #18 La Shawn Barber at November 24, 2005 1:26 PM

    Hey what are you guys talking about? Can I join in?

    #19 Cliff May at November 24, 2005 1:29 PM

    Hey, if Jonah Goldberg applies to be on Pajamas will you guys help me vote him down? He still owes me twenty bucks and trust me; you don't want to share a bathroom with him.

    #20 Glenn Reynolds at November 24, 2005 1:33 PM

    Evan Coyne Maloney once shared a bathroom with someone and he catalogs some things that he found in the bowl. I think a book deal should be in the offing. For more on books, Stephen Green admits to having read one here.

    #21 Adam Bellow at November 24, 2005 1:41 PM

    Speaking of books, my dad wrote some... or did I mention that already? Anyway, books are good. You should read them and ...um......Jesus, I'm a fucking failure. What the hell was I thinking when I signed up for this?

    #22 La Shawn Barber at November 24, 2005 1:55 PM

    This one time, when I was at bible camp...

    #23 Tammy Bruce at November 24, 2005 2:09 PM

    Did you guys hear anything?

    #24 Cliff May at November 24, 2005 2:19 PM

    Nope. So did anybody elses check bounce? Roger said it was because of the name change and they had to close the account...but then he flew back to LA and now he doesn't return my calls.

    #25 Glenn Reynolds at November 24, 2005 2:23 PM

    Eugene Volokh chimes in on California's laws regarding bounced checks and Professor Bainbridge has some advice about how to sue for back pay.

    #26 Cliff May at November 24, 2005 2:27 PM

    Shit. And I just signed up for Paint Ball League on Victor Davis Hanson's team. How the hell am I gonna pay for that?

    This is probably Joe Wilson's fault.


    posted by tbogg at 11:30 PM



    Medical update

    Back home. Posted by Picasa

    For those who have written emails, thanks for your concern about Beckham (aka The Little Bastard™). Without getting into the bloody details, there was blood involved, but he has an excellent vet and everything is fine. The vet's bank account is also showing signs of improvement.

    As soon as he destroys something, we'll know that the universe is once again in alignment.

    ...the Little Bastard™

    posted by tbogg at 6:53 PM



    Blogging will continue...

    ...through the Thanksgiving weekend because snark never takes a holiday.

    More stuff tonight.

    posted by tbogg at 4:09 PM



    Style over Substance

    Check out the big brain on Fat Tony as he explains the legal reasoning behind handing the Presidency to the son of the guy who appointed him:

    On the 5-4 Supreme Court ruling that made George W. Bush President, Scalia might have mused: "What did you expect us to do? Turn the case down because it wasn't important enough? Or give the Florida Supreme Court another couple of weeks in which the United States could look ridiculous?"

    Because looking good is what the founders would have wanted....

    posted by tbogg at 3:52 PM


    Tuesday, November 22, 2005


    Beyond therapy

    Today we learned that James Lileks is the only person in America who can fuck up a Pop-Tart:

    This morning I attempted to bring her into the ways of Cream Cheese; I’d purchased some Toaster Strudels with cream cheese filling, and built it up as a great taste sensation. I even promised to make a special pattern with the icing.

    “What kind,” she said last night as I tucked her in.

    “A zig zag pattern. With dots.”

    “Great, daddy.”

    This morning I got up before she did – rare, and welcome. She came down rubbing her eyes and yawning in the traditional fashion of the freshly-awakened urchin, and asked for a Toaster Strudel with a zig-zag pattern. I obliged. But. I tore the frosting packet incorrectly, opening a gash at the bottom (think Titanic) and this made precision application impossible. I had no choice but to smear the stuff all over with a knife.

    “It’s not a zig zag,” she said.

    “It’s impasto.”


    “It’s a schmear. It’s a schmear over the cream cheese instead of a schmear of cream cheese.”

    “You’re not making any sense.”

    “Eat it.”

    Oddly enough, the

    “You’re not making any sense.”

    “Eat it.”

    exchange is representative of over seventy percent of the emails between Jimbo and his readers....

    posted by tbogg at 5:37 PM



    So this is what $3.5 million buys

    Blogging has changed. Adapt or perish. Posted by Picasa

    Further pushing the envelope of the cutting edge so that it is outside of the box and creating a new paradigm, The Artist Formerly Known as OSM™ introduces a new feature that they call a "CARNIVAL" (they're still looking into trademarking it just as soon as their attorney gets back from his day job at Chuck E. Cheese). A "CARNIVAL" is a collection of "links" to other "blogs" of a particular "subject" representing the views of the "bloggers" who "blog" at their respective "blog".

    In an effort to bring some "order" to this "chaos", Pajama Redux® has employed the services of a law "professor" who doesn't seem to do much "work" at his "job". The aforementioned "professor" briefly introduces each link after having spent countless seconds getting the "gist" of what the "raving loon" at the other end of the link was babbling about using venn diagrams and kerning and other disciplines of the type that make people move away from them at bars and coffeehouses and debate camps.

    After investing hundreds of thousands of venture capital dollars on consultants, coding, editors, and really cool keyboards that are Snapple-proof, the end result can be found (here), not to be confused with this one with all of its annoying pre-groundbreaking paradigm-shifting "hehs" and "indeeds".

    The internets will never be the same....

    posted by tbogg at 3:09 PM



    Hint. Hint.

    My Wal-Mart wishlist... Posted by Picasa


    I WONDER [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
    how many right-wing guys will be buying a Wal-Mart engagement ring as a political statement. It could prove to be the first big test....
    Posted at 01:54 PM

    ...and there was much throat-clearing and looking-the-other-way and changing-the-subject and plans-to-act-gay by the Corner guys.

    posted by tbogg at 7:02 AM


    Monday, November 21, 2005


    Bad Cinema

    Unfortunately I have a sick puppy (Beckham...again) so I was unable to take the time to come up with movies that I hate like here here here and here.

    I will say that...here it comes. I loved The Piano and I will explain why on Tuesday.

    Jeebus. I can hear the wolves circling already...

    posted by tbogg at 11:42 PM



    I hear that killtheragheads.com™ is still available.

    Get the plunger.
    The business plan has plugged it up.
     Posted by Picasa

    Pajama to OSM to Pajama

    This is like a blogging Dumb & Dumber.

    posted by tbogg at 11:21 PM



    Twenty years ago? Were the films in color then?

    There's something about William. Posted by Picasa

    Caryn James in the NY Times on playing gay:

    This season she might have added: playing gay. There has been an explosion of Oscar-baiting performances in which straight actors play gay, transvestite or transgender characters. Philip Seymour Hoffman melts into the role of the gay title character in "Capote," while Cillian Murphy plays a transvestite in 1970's Ireland in Neil Jordan's witty, endearing "Breakfast on Pluto." Jake Gyllenhaal and Heath Ledger play lovers in "Brokeback Mountain" (set to open Dec. 9), already better known as "the gay cowboy movie" and already a Letterman joke.

    But big-name actors are leaping into such roles in smaller films, too. Felicity Huffman stretches way beyond "Desperate Housewives" as a man about to become a woman in "Transamerica" (Dec. 2) and Peter Sarsgaard plays a gay Hollywood screenwriter who has an affair with a closeted, married studio executive (Campbell Scott) in the current "Dying Gaul."

    It's this cluster of sexually different roles that is new, not the idea itself. These actors are simply following the Oscar-winning path set more than a decade ago by Tom Hanks as a gay man with AIDS in "Philadelphia," followed by Hilary Swank as the cross-dressing heroine of "Boys Don't Cry" and Charlize Theron, whose role in "Monster" was a kind of award-baiting triple-whammy: she gained weight, wore fake teeth and played a lesbian. With evidence that they will be rewarded for such stretches, and with a public now accustomed to seeing gay characters in movies and television shows like "Will & Grace," big-name actors seem eager to take these roles.

    I guess you could say that Tom Hanks paved the path if you ignored William Hurt in Kiss of the Spider Woman (1985), Peter Finch in Sunday, Bloody Sunday (1971...okay. He didn't win), and Peter O'Toole in Lawrence of Arabia (1962. He didn't win but the movie did).

    I'm sure that David E. could provide more examples that flew under my radar. Personally I think George C. Scott went a little too butch in Patton (1970) but that's just me.

    By the way...I was sitting out in front of a Starbucks (oh, bite me) the other day listening to this blowhard pontificate to his adoring friends about Brokeback as he described it as having been written by "this New York writer who writes cowboy porn".


    I should have scalded him with a vente double non-fat decaf dumbassachino. No foam...

    posted by tbogg at 10:33 PM



    Crash course on Cash

    "I took a shot of cocaine, and I shot my woman down" Posted by Picasa

    Perpetual crowd scene extra/actress Govindini Murtry explains Johnny Cash to all of us elitists after spending 135 minutes with The Man in Black:

    The new Johnny Cash biopic Walk The Line (opening this weekend) is a well-crafted, absorbing piece of Americana that conservatives should go out and support. Shocking for a movie made in today’s Hollywood, the film treats two Red State American icons, Johnny Cash (played by Joaquin Phoenix) and June Carter Cash (played by Reese Witherspoon), with affection and respect. The film also compellingly documents one of the most fertile and inventive periods in American musical history: the 1950s and 1960s. I knew next to nothing about Johnny Cash or his music going into the film, but after of listening to 136 minutes of his terrific music, I came out a fan.

    And not only a fan, she came out quite the lil Cashophile. For example, even though she knew "next to nothin about Cash":

    The film also provides excellent acting opportunities for Joaquin Phoenix and Reese Witherspoon. Phoenix does an outstanding job playing Cash - he captures his mannerisms, quirks, and neuroses perfectly.

    ...as for that music she knew so little about:

    The most enjoyable part of Walk The Line, though, is the music. Joaquin Phoenix and Reese Witherspoon do an excellent job recreating the musical numbers of Cash and Carter.

    So of course, if she enjoyed it, it must be a conservative movie:

    Overall,Walk The Line is well crafted and entertaining. It’s a movie that conservatives can enjoy without having their values or their intelligence gratuitously insulted. It’s nice to see a film in which talent and hard work are celebrated, and people from rural America who hold traditional values are treated with respect.

    Well there is "insulted" and then there is "gratuitously insulted" but nevermind, those traditional values include drug use, divorce,and marrying the wife of one your drinking buddies that Govindini learned about during her hardscrabble life growing up dirt-poor in trailer park in Tulsa. Or at Yale after coming into the country. One of the those...

    Now if the movie had gone into the eighties and nineties Govindini might have learned that Red State country music turned its back on Cash as turned its focus to puffed-up, over-coiffed, boot-scootin' hat boys and faux-country pop tarts. Cash resurrected his career near the end of his life while recording songs by non-traditional artists like Soundgarden, Nick Cave, and Trent Reznor for Rick Rubin's American label where Cash became quite the alt-hero.

    It's not enough that these people called dibs on Jesus, now they want all of the gods...


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