Fifteen ways to avoid a good southern ass whuppin. Issued by the Southern Tourism Bureau to ALL visiting Northerners and Northeastern Urbanites: (Replace Billy Bob with Rangi or Bruce and this could be New Zealand.) 1) Don't order filet mignon or pasta primavera at Waffle House. It's just a diner. They serve breakfast 24 hours a day. Let them cook something they know. If you confuse them, they'll kick your ass. 2) Don't laugh at our Southern names (Merleen, Bodie, Ovine, Luther Ray, Tammy Lynn, Darla Beth, Inez, Billy Joe, Sissy, Clovis, etc.) or we will kick your ass. 3) Don't order a bottle of pop or a can of soda down here. Down here it's called Coke. Nobody gives a flying damn whether it's Pepsi, RC, Dr. Pepper, 7-Up or whatever...it's still a Coke. Accept it. Doing otherwise can lead to an ass kicking. 4) We know our heritage. Most of us are more literate than you (e.g., Welty, Williams, Faulkner). We are also better educated and generally a lot nicer. Don't refer to us as a bunch of hillbillies, or we'll kick your ass. 5) We have plenty of business sense (e.g., Fred Smith of Fed Ex, Turner Broadcasting, MCI WorldCom, MTV, Netscape). Naturally, we do, sometimes, have small lapses in judgment (e.g.Edwards, Duke, Barnes, Clinton). We don't care if you think we are dumb. We are not dumb enough to let someone move to our state in order to run for the Senate. If someone tried to do that, we would kick his/her ass. 6) Don't laugh at our Civil War monuments. If Lee had listened to Longstreet and flanked Meade at Gettysburg instead of sending Pickett up the middle, you'd be paying taxes to Richmond instead of Washington. If you visit Stone Mountain and complain about the carving, we'll kick your ass. 7) We are fully aware of how high the humidity is, so shut the hell up. Just spend your money and get the hell out of here, or we'll kick your ass. 8) Don't order wheat toast at Cracker Barrel. Everyone will instantly know that you're a Yankee. Eat your biscuits like God intended -- with gravy. And don't put sugar on your grits, or we'll kick your ass. 9) Don't fake a Southern accent. This will incite a riot, and you will get your ass kicked. 10) Don't talk about how much better things are at home because we know better. Many of us have visited Northern hellholes like Detroit, Chicago, and DC, and we have the scars to prove it. If you don't like it here, Delta is ready when you are. Move your ass on home before it gets kicked. 11) Yes, we know how to speak proper English. We talk this way because we don't want to sound like you. We don't care if you don't understand what we are saying. All other Southerners understand what we are saying, and that's all that matters. Now, go away and leave us alone, or we'll kick your ass. 12) Don't complain that the South is dirty and polluted. None of OUR lakes or rivers have caught fire recently. If you whine about OUR scenic beauty, we'll kick your ass all the way back to Boston Harbor. 13) Don't ridicule our Southern manners. We say sir and ma'am. We hold doors open for others. We offer our seats to old folks because such things are expected of civilized people. Behave yourselves around our sweet little gray-haired grandmothers or they'll kick some manners into your ass just like they did ours. 14) So you think we're quaint or losers because most of us live in the countryside? That's because we have enough sense to not live in filthy, smelly, crime-infested cesspools like New York or Baltimore. Make fun of our fresh air, and we'll kick your ass. 15) Last, but not least, DO NOT DARE to come down here and tell us how to cook barbecue. This will get your ass shot (right after it is kicked). You're lucky we let you come down here at all. Criticize our barbecue, and you will go home in a pine box minus your ass!
Bin Laden still alive, reveals spy satellite This report from the Guardian. Well actually, I don't think the technology has advanced to the 'thinking machine' stage just yet. This sounds suspiciously like the story about the big lunker bass that really was sunning itself over in the tree limbs just the other day. That guy over there says he seen it! He oughtta know, shouldn't he? They say he's been tellin stories to visitors round these parts just hungry for a tale for better part of a possums years...
Oh! The humanity! Alcohol Abuse is not funny! Just when you thought it couldn't get any worse from Europe, you run across something like this. (Found via the ranting John Cat)
Baking Needs? While discussing the new layout, the question came up as to wether or not I make puff-pastries as well. Actually, no, for all baking needs I must defer to Laurence Simon over at Amish Tech Support. And, as far as you know, he doesn't allow his cats to knead the dough, or add ingredients.
Well, there we have it Following a bit of trial and many errors, our remodeling is just about done, at least as far as I'm aware at this particular moment, subject to further discussion exploring the depth and breadth of human emotion. Bactine, Band-aids, Asprins, and Barley pop all around. Cheers from the Tidewater
If there was ever someone who deserved an old fashioned ass-kickin'... It's this guy. At least my beloved Cardinals are well on their way to kicking the crap out of the loathesome Diamondbacks. Soon, my friends, very soon, they will be dethroning the Evil Empire, or the "Yankees," as baseball's champs.
Puff the Magic Smokin' Dragon! This lady is a moron. Apparently, she had no idea that smoking is bad for you! Because I, like every other rational person, thought that inhaling fire was a good thing.


Can someone pass me the nails and duct tape, please... Well, now that we've given the ad banner at the top the boot, decided to do a bit of remodeling. Just don't sit down on anything if you're wearing dark colors, and you should be fine. We should have things nicely spruced up over the next couple of days. If the site pops up with wierdness, I'm all set to remind folks that Murray did make the disclaimer early on that HTML was not his gig. What that statement may have to do with any possible wierdness as we redecorate, I haven't a clue. While that's going on, check out what this jury in California did to make sure they stole the judicial headlines for idiocy from the NJ Supreme Court's antics. I'm surprised they didn't specify a 'gazillion' instead. Maybe they were just pissed about not being able to get out of jury duty...
BUT THE ARAB STATES WON'T STAND FOR IT! Actually, yes they will. Amir Taheri in the Arab News, hardly a tool of crypto-Zionist propaganda, assures us that the fix is in and the plan to turn Saddam into a pile of steaming meat chunks in a busted bunker has been quietly rubber-stamped.

And what do the Arabs, and Iranians for that matter, mean to do about it? Notwithstanding the recent huffing and puffing at the Arab League’s ministerial conference in Cairo, the short answer is: nothing. The "don’t-touch-Saddam" lobby in Washington and London has made much of two supposed threats. The first is unspecified but supposedly explosive reaction from the Arabs. We can assure tem that there will be none. [ ... ] Over the past few weeks, Arab opposition to military action against Saddam Hussein has crumbled. There are two reasons for this. The first is that the Arabs have now concluded that Washington is no longer bluffing and that President George Bush is determined to topple Saddam Hussein. Arab leaders who have read the "Siasatnameh" (Book of Politics) by the 10th century scholar and statesman Nizam Al-Mulk, remember his celebrated dictum: "A man who sides with a loser is not fit for political office." When you know that the loser in question is also your bitterest enemy you would have even less reason to side with him.

Someone once gave a speech at the Arab League and ended by howling "When Arab unity is achieved, Israel will be destroyed!" Everyone cheered wildly. Especially in Tel Aviv.
CAN'T WE JUST GIVE CLINTON A PEERAGE AND SEND HIM TO THE LORDS OR SOMETHING? Anyone catch Bill Clinton's disgraceful performance at the Labour Party conference? See, this is one of the drawbacks of you chaps not being part of the Empire anymore. Time was, when someone was clearly past their use-by date they could be made Baron this or Lord Such-and-such, be patted on the head and told to run along to the House of Lords where they could bore all the other Semior Respected Elder Statesmen to death without actually affecting policy. Bill Clinton was bad enough when he was President, now he's bored and has nothing to lose and can walk around tut-tutting about the current incumbent, issuing an occasional sharp intake of breath, shaking his head ruefully and general adopting a pose of "well I sure wouldn't have done anything that stupid if I were still in charge" without actually coming out and actually saying precisely what his alternative is. The reaction from the UK scum press has been predictibly rapturous. The Mirror basically gave him a tongue-bath (who's an American poodle again?)

CLINTON HAS THE VISION BUSH LACKS WHAT a performance. What a politician. What a superstar.

What a pile of shite!

Bill Clinton played the parts of elder statesman, philosopher and world leader at Labour's conference and played them to perfection.

He was always a better actor than he was a President. And he'd brought Kevin Spacey along to give him some last-minute prep, so no wonder his acting has improved.

It was a magnificent speech from a man who is rapidly becoming the greatest figure in world politics, second only, perhaps, to Nelson Mandela.

This quote comes you you Pre-Fisked (tm). Right now, Clinton could stand for Labour in the next by-election and get himself a seat in the Commons without breaking a sweat right now. I can almost hear you Americans in the audience cheering at the prospect, but spare a thought for the poor old Tommies, they ARE your allies after all. Imagine the permanent effect of this on Allied relations. Have some pity on a smaller nation! Christopher Hitchens, predictibly enough, lazily reaches out and swats Clinton down, but Hitch has had years of experience at this and demonstrates how it's done.

How it all came back to me - the tongue ruthlessly roving the cheek; the lip-biting to indicate sincerity; the husky voice; the abject self-deprecation; the incurable habit of speaking for 20 minutes longer than he should. Most amusing, though, was how he made his own foreign policy sound more statesmanlike and judicious than it had ever been. There probably was not a delegate present who would not have been primed to laugh at a George Dubya "cowboy" joke. Yet Mr Clinton's most notorious foreign policy action was to launch a flight of cruise missiles into the outskirts of the city of Khartoum, destroying the Al-Shifa pharmaceutical factory on the pretence (now acknowledged to have been false) it was a chemical weapons facility.

Yup, it was the return of the fire-off-a-two-million-dollar-missile-at-at-ten-dollar-tent-and-hit-a-camel-in-the-butt kid. The nerve, the gall, the shamelessness! The re-writing of history before the ink was even dry!


Well there goes that mouthful of milo!

Head over to American RealPolitik for the rest of them on this theme.
And the Truth shall set Brother Bill Free... "Astonishing Rogue'. Those Brits and their gift of understatement. Mike at Cold Fury responds calmly to an item Bill Quick snagged from the UK Times Online. He weaves in his own take of a Televison Interview of two former Clintoon staffers, as they describe the circumstances of the tales they recount in their book about their term of service to the famous man with the even more famous cigar. (no, they didn't work for Churchill)
Lovingly Stolen From NZPundit A couple of New Jersey hunters are out in the woods when one of them falls to the ground. He doesn't seem to be breathing, his eyes are rolled back in his head. The other guy whips out his cell phone and calls the emergency services. He gasps to the operator: "My friend is dead! What can I do?" The operator, in a calm soothing voice, says: "Just take it easy. I can help. First, let's make sure he's dead." There is a silence, then a shot is heard. The guy's voice comes back on the line. He says: "OK, now what?" Must be our twisted Kiwi sense of humor.
Court Cases I'd like to See #1 Sylvanian Coalition VS Greenies of the World A case brought on by the persistent, widespread and complety unsolicited sexual advances in a practice know as “Tree Hugging” Douglas Wambaugh appearing for the trees your honour! Well it amused me and I have the master password so it gets posted. See what happens when I get two sugars in my morning milo. Ok, I’ll shut up now.
But, but, but - how will they talk to them? Probably use one of these really cool gadgets. And you were expecting some cheap Trek-style mention of a 'universal translator'...ha.
If 'Foster's is Australian for 'Beer' What is the word for ouch?
SOPHISTICATED EUROPEAN HUMOUR The wife of the European Central Bank president, Gretta Duisenberg has started a group dedicated to ending the "occupation" of Palestine. She's organizing a petition on those grounds. You may remember her as the person who hung a PLO flag outside her home, apparently to piss off her Jewish neighbour, and also to show her anger at the "the rich Jewish lobby in America" that perpetuates the injustice against the "Palestinian people." Nice. She's also clearly very sensitive to the events of recent European history.

Mrs Duisenberg was asked in a radio program how many signatures she was hoping to collect for her petition. She said: "Oh, perhaps six million" and started laughing loudly.

Oh those Europeans with their cultured sense of humour, they just slay me. Oh, wait, that's their plan isn't it?
Public Service Announcement The Anti-Idiotarian Rottweiler has become lateraly mobile and can now be found here.
IF YOU HAD TROUBLE KEEPING UP with Steve DenBeste lately, I feel your pain. The posts seem to get longer and longer. Also, Steve is getting crankier by the day. I don't blame him, though: if I would have taken on as many idiots and hypocrites as he does almost every day, "cranky" would not begin to describe how I would have felt. Sometimes, though, he posts something that goes straight to the point . (Warning: under 10 lines each!) Update: Steve is worried, So am I. I'm just lucky there are some guys here who make me laugh anyway.
FOR THOSE OF YOU WHO DON'T KNOW MDA is Magen David Adom - Red Star of David, the Israeli equivalent of the Red Cross. This organization is saving lives in Israel. All lives: Jewish, Arab, European and American (such as foreign media and tourists). MDA faces many problems, one of them being the refusal by the International Red Cross and Red Crescent to recognise it, for political reasons. The most seriuos problem though is money. As the Israeli economy is near collapse, MDA's services are needed more that ever, in the face of the frequent terrorist attacks. A large part of MDA budget comes from donations throughout the world, especially countries with large Jewish communities. One of such countries is Canada, where MDA is represented by CMDA. I have just received this e-mail, which I think speaks for itself: This e-mail is going out to everyone who has requested more information on the pending closure of Canadian Magen David Adom by the CCRA (Canadian Customs Revenue Agency, which is an agency of the government of Canada) and the campaign which has been launched to save CMDA from closure. Below are some of the questions/issues which everyone should be aware of. ---Why does the CCRA want to close CMDA? The CCRA is not simply removing CMDA's ability to issue tax receipts. They are trying to shut them down entirely. For the following reasons (none of which, of course, provide any real justification); 1)One ambulance which was donated to MDA by CMDA and was no longer being used by MDA was given to the IDF, to be used as a first-aid station. 2)CMDA, at one point, purchased bullet proof vests for ambulance drivers in Israel (unfortunately, they are a necessity). Many ambulances respond to terrorist attacks. They are the first ones on the scene and need to be protected. The CCRA did not like the fact that bullet proof vests were purchased. 3)The CCRA cited a non-existent policy that Canada does not consider work beyond the green line to be charitable in nature and that CMDA (donated) ambulances probably cross the green line. The trial judge turned down this claim, saying there was no such policy. This shows you who we are dealing with (they cited a non-existent policy!). 4)The CCRA believes that MDA is too "friendly" with the IDF. They came to this conclusion after reading a blurb on MDA?s (not CMDA's) website which states during a time of crisis; MDA allows the IDF (if necessary) to use their communication devices. ---Did CMDA do something wrong in their receipting procedures? No. CMDA has not done anything which justifies revoking its ability to issue tax receipts or closing it down. ---Why is the CCRA trying to close down CMDA when Canadians are free to donate money (and get a tax receipt) to the terrorist organization Hamas? Ask them (the CCRA - Caplan.E@parl.gc.ca)! ---What is the exact status of CMDA, are they really at risk of getting shut down? Yes people! If the Canadian government has its way, they will be closed very soon ? UNLESS we take action. ---How do I verify that CMDA is really being closed? Call them at (514) 731-4400 Unfortunately the closing of CMDA has not been well publicized up until now. I, for one, believe that has to change. The government must understand that it is not acceptable to close CMDA. I also fear that other Israeli/Jewish organizations may be targeted in the future if we don't stop the closure of CMDA. I have tried to respond to all the e-mails I have received, and think I have provided most of the important info above. If anyone still has questions or comments please feel free to e-mail me at savecmda@hotmail.com. I will be getting in touch with some of you regarding specific requests or offers of help. 1)Sign the petition http://www.PetitionOnline.com/savemda/petition.html 2)Write to and call: Prime Minister Jean Chretien (613) 941-6900 pm@pm.gc.ca Minister of National Revenue, Hon. Elinor Caplan (She heads the Canada Customs and Revenue Agency) (613) 992-0253 Caplan.E@parl.gc.ca 3)Tell people about this cause! ***Please Note*** The campaign and petition to save CMDA is in no way being organized/run by CMDA. It was initiated and is being run by a private citizen who believes that we must correct an injustice. Furthermore, all the information which I have used in this e-mail has been acquired through public documents and the media. Regards Steven Rosenshein Campaign to Save Canadian Magen David Adom
Sparklies? Now, run this by me again, we spent how many millions of dollars to entertain Kiwis with fireworks?


Spam, Rice, and Toilet Paper - the basic necessities Not that these folks have ever seen the West Coast dockworkers and shipping companies in a pissing contest before mind you, but you probably don't want to lolligag around in the doorway of the Mililani Wal-Mart for the next couple of days.
US Senate Seat price fixed - a cool $800K Hey, shopping around for a Senatorial candidate because the one the you bamboozled the voters to pick in the primaries turns out to be a corrupt sleazeball, everyone knows it now, and he's tanking in the polls? Does it seem like your carefully crafted campaign plan is coming apart at the seams? Is the campaign turning into just one long drawn out bad dream? Hey, we can feel your pain, brother, yes we can. Ditch those depressing Sunshine State Shakes - give the State of New Jersey your business! If you really hate minor annoyances such as election laws threatening to trip up your finely tuned political strategy, be sure to run your next campaign in New Jersey. We have a State Supreme Court even more willing to bend over backwards and re-interpret those pesky laws than those stuffed robes in Florida ever thought of being! For example - Why go through the hassle of challenging each and every absentee ballot with a military postmark individually? Get them all thrown out in one fell swoop and save on all those billable hours for observers willing to make the most outrageous claims imaginable to intimidate election commisioners into tossing out votes. Having chad nightmares? Hey, who doesn't! Here in New Jersey, the only Chads we have are mall rats, and it won't matter to anyone if they're swinging, or even pregnant! And the best part is - you know up front how much green your organization is going to have to schlep over to rig the election for your party as completely as possible. No more headaches trying to make sure your campaign budget takes into account all those unexpected fees and charges for busing in demonstrators, or filing frivilous motion after frivilous motion with no real hope of success. Our flat fee system is ranked numero uno in customer satisfaction by that company that will give customer service awards to anyone willing to pay their consulting fee! Think we're kidding? Here's a fine result of the super fast, give the respondents less than 24 hours to prepare for type of service that we've provided our latest clients - the Democratic Party. New Jersey - why run a campaign anywhere else?
"Dear Souha, There is something I have been meaning to tell you for the past 2 years: I have been seeing someone. Rest assured that none of it is your fault - I am the only one to blame..." (image gracefully stolen from Steve Chapman).
STOP ME BEFORE I AGREE WITH AMIR BUTLER AGAIN.... If someone on the other side says something sane and sensible, it should be acknowledged as such. Amir Butler tries to inject a note of sanity into the Australian Muslim community, as a result of some of its leaders having become so suppurated in their own bile that they are lending their support to absolutely anyone who they see as opposed to The Jews. Many prominent Muslims have been signing petitions which have appeared in Australian newspapers, sponsored by the innocuous-sounding Citizens Electoral Council (CEC). Big mistake. Amir asks them if they can spell B-L-O-W-B-A-C-K?

Unfortunately, Muslims seem to have internalised victimhood to the point that we are so desperate for political allies that anyone who claims to be pro-Palestine or anti-Israeli is immediately our friend - regardless of who they are or what other positions they hold. It's that kind of mentality that led some Muslims nowadays to distribute the material of groups such as the White Aryan Nation or David Duke, oblivious to the fact that both entities have written against Muslims with the same vigour as they now write against Jews. It does nothing to help our causes, but it does everything to provide fodder for our opponents to paint us as wackos and conspiracy theorists peddling the sort of illogical gibberish as the "4,000 Israelis didn't turn up to work" nonsense. As such, Australian Muslims should be very wary of aligning themselves with the Citizens Electoral Council. A visit to the CEC web site shows that their chief ideologue is one Lyndon LaRouche, a US-based "physical economist and presidential candidate". Who is this LaRouche guy?

Amir proceeds to tell them. Whoa Nellie! Is this guy crazier than a loon or what man?

"To the extent that my physical powers do not prevent me, I am now confident and capable of ending your [NCLC members'] political - and sexual - impotence; the two are interconnected aspects of the same problem." "The Politics of Male Impotence", Lyndon H. LaRouche, Jr., (under pen name L. Marcus) NCLC Internal Document, August 16, 1973 "Who is pushing the world toward war? is the forces behind the World Wildlife Fund, the Club of Rome, and the heritage of H.G. Wells and the evil Bertrand Russell." "An Open Letter to President Brezhnev", Lyndon H. LaRouche, Jr., Executive Intelligence Review, June 2, 1981

Amir Butler, despite being on the other side, at least has a firm grip on reality and is attempting to persuade other Muslims to come to grips with the concept that just because someone wants to kill the Jews, that doesn't neccessarily make them a useful ally.

LaRouche is crazy and it is very disturbing to see Muslims climb aboard his wagon. In fact, it is downright embarassing and detrimental to our causes.

In one sense, it makes it a lot easier to dismiss a lot of the rhetoric from the Muslim community when they let themselves get sucked in by racist lunatics. Lord know they have plenty of their own without needing to import any from the West. But I see this as part of the civil war within Islam that ultimately is where the current conflict will be decided. Islamfascists claim to speak on behalf of Islam, and so far not many have dared dispute this in public, or if they have, they haven't been very loud. Extremists make good copy, and nutjobs with guns tend to be a tad intimidating for your average moderate. So when Amir comes along and tries to say something sensible, he should be applauded for it. While it may remove at least one stick we can use to beat them with, in the long run isn't this the sort of development that may make it unneccessary to beat them at all? I realise one swallow doesn't make a summer, but isn't a dose of rationality in the other side encouraging? Right now there are those in the Arab/Muslim world who have the desire and the ability to inflict extremely serious harm on the Western democracies. The military aspect of the current conflict is designed to reduce their ability to do this, but even more important in the long run will be a reduction in their desire to attack us. An undeniable military defeat for Iraq, followed by the establishment of some form of democractic capitalist system there could provide a very useful impetus for some genuine soul-searching by Arabs and Muslims. You'll notice Japan has been very quiet for the past 60 years, ever since Emperor Hirohito won the Understatement of the Century Award by going on the radio and saying "The war has proceeded not neccessarily to Japan's advantage". Their defeat forced a re-think, and a genuine change, which has led to nothing but good results for Japan. The same can happen in the Arab world. I guess I'm just trying to put some positive spin on the old adage that "Once you have them by the balls, their hearts and minds will follow". Just remember, ultimately it's their hearts and minds that matter.
MERYL YOURISH - LOOSE WOMAN? You be the judge. First she declares me her fiance. Then she decides Bill Herbert is her beau, largely because he's on the same continent and I'm down here in Australia. And now this!

Marry me, Mark From Mark Steyn's latest column:

What should the West do about this problem? Well, we could start by acknowledging it. Fact: Almost all Denmark's rape victims are ethnic Danish girls or women. Fact: An ethnic Danish girl is far more likely to be raped by a Muslim than an ethnic Dane. Fact: Immigration means that more Danish women get raped. You can argue about the way to change these stubborn facts -- curtail immigration vs increase outreach, cut welfare vs educate immigrant parents -- as the People's Party and the Muslim Youth League are doing. These are tenable positions in the debate. But, when you insist someone's a "hatemonger" even for mentioning these awkward demographic trends, you're just trying to shut down the debate: "56% of immigrant m..." Hatemonger! "47% of serious cr..." HATEMONGER!! "68% of reported..." H-A-T-E-M-O-N-G-E-R!!!

[ ... ] (And if anyone has his email address, someone send him along my proposal, will you?)

And in a slightly earlier post, the fickle Dark Lady of New Jersey is still toying with the affections of her suitors.

Hm. I'm getting more and more willing to organize and/or attend a NJ-area blogger get-together. I'm going to be back in NJ for Thanksgiving, from Wednesday to Saturday (have to come back home Saturday to teach the kids on Sunday). I'll think about it. The only thing I know for sure is that I should be hooking up with former fiancé Bruce Hill (War Now! is gone, but his brother and others at Silent Running take up the torch) around that time, as he'll be in the States for a visit. Hm. Bill, you don't think he's looking to win me back, do you? This could get interesting.

Now far be it for me to impugn the good name of a lady, but do you not think that some sort of explaination of this apparently somewhat wanton behaviour is called for? You know, before it all ends in some sort of farce involving me, Meryl, Bill Herbert, Mark Steyn, a large room with french windows, a cupboard big enough to hide in and a confused Vicar (ok, Rabbi) whose trousers keep falling down for completely innocent reasons. On the other hand, if something like that does happen, we could video it and flog the result on the internet on a pay-per-view basis.
IT ISN'T THE HEAT WE CAN'T STAND Christopher Hitchens is someone I suspect I would have a heck of an argument with on a number of topics, especially Israel, on which he is flat-out wrong. But that may be because of his opposition to religion in all its manifestations, in which he is the modern heir of Christopher Mrlowe. By God, is there anyone today suicidal enough to attempt a production of "The Jew of Malta"? Actually, I'm quite certain that I would lose any such argument, but if I paid close attention to him I might learn something and become a better thinker, and subsequent sword-crossings might become somewhat more even. Hitchens is someone deserving of being regarded as an opponent rather than an enemy. Okay, his attempt to indict Henry Kissinger as a war criminal was, at best, merely quixotic and amusing. But by God he's capable of hitting the nail on the head over the sheer toxicity of the modern Left. His final article in The Nation is an example of George Orwell-like simplicity and elegance. As usual, Andrew Sullivan says it best.

"As Hitchens looked around him, even in the days after the atrocity, he found something rather different. He found that a deep and lingering hatred of America over-powered some leftists' objection to mass murder. He found excuses for totalitarian hatred. He saw exactly what Orwell had seen in the leftist intelligentsia of his own time: not simply a passivity in the face of evil, but almost an admiration for it. And he was disgusted. Since those first days of shock, the hard Left has merely redoubled its assault on a free society's right to self-defense. The endless series of rationalizations, the opposition to any war to fight terror, now the sad and pathetic moral abdication of those who see president Bush as more of a threat to world order and peace than Saddam Hussein - all these responses, under-written by a simpering, barely concealed anti-Semitism, would be enough to turn anyone's stomach, let alone a good liberal's. At some point, when you look around and see that this is the quality of one's ideological allies, you have to break ranks, if only for the sake of personal moral hygiene."

If you can't take the heat, get out of the kitchen, goes the old political saw. For some of us who used to think of ourselves as being on the Left, it's isn't the heat that bothers us. It's the smell.
GEE, YA THINK? From our "News of the Bleeding Obvious" file... Saddam envoy: United States preparing for war against Iraq See, this is exactly the kind of paranoid thinking that makes the Iraqi leader so untrustworthy. What can you do with someone capable of harbouring such dangerous fantasies? Where is the love?
BOO HOO, MY HEART BLEEDS LUMPY CUSTARD Allow me to state for the record just how much I don't care about this.

Malaysia and Pakistan have reacted angrily to new American regulations to register people from selected Arab and Muslim countries on arrival in the US. Under the new policy, the US Immigration and Naturalisation Service (INS) will routinely fingerprint, photograph and question potential entrants, checking their pictures and prints against criminal and terrorist databases.

Okay, try this on for size. America has reacted angrily to new Islamofascist policies of crashing civillian airliners into skyscrapers. Are they dragging all Arabs and Muslims off incoming flights and beheading them on the tarmac? Are all Arabs and Muslims finding themselves in a basement with wires clipped to their reproductive organs? Are all Arabs and Muslims being imprisoned without trial, simply on the basis of their race or religion? Of course not. I don't know if the Malaysian or Pakistani government have been keeping up with current events, but a year and a bit ago, a group of Arab/Muslim males attacked the United States. Of course not all Arabs and Muslims are terrorists, but the terrorists are all Arab/Muslim males. Therefore the US is perfectly entitled to profile such people attempting entry. Profiling is not degrading, it's simply a normal proceedure, and no Arabs or Muslims can seriously suggest it is wrong to do so. If a group of Jewish fanatics had done something similarly horrible, and they continued to pose a threat to the US, then I would expect to be photographed, fingerprinted and my story checked thoroughly on entry. It's a small enough price to pay.

[Malaysia's prime minister] Dr Mahathir said he was upset at the American measures. "Because of the acts of a few people, the whole Muslim world seems to have been labelled," he said. On 16 September, Dr Mahathir's deputy Ahmad Abdullah Badawi was asked to remove his belt and shoes at Los Angeles airport before being allowed to fly on to New York.

Oh the humanity!


Cold Fruy has a Disturbing Story of what happens when a government agency has too much power and a bad attitude. Looks like the powers that be are trying to bury it as well so go there, read it, get angry and rock the boat. I agree that this needs to some attention so if anyone comes up with a plan feel free to share with the rest of the class.
Roses are red/Violets are blue/Afghanistan was just like Vietnam/And Iraq will be too This is one brilliant Brit - go read. Oh, and change your monitor's color settings to ignore the ones on his page - you might thank me for it.
Will someone please think about the children? I said "think" - don't open your wallet yet: Voice of Israel radio quotes the IDF spokseman in his "long and detailed" reply to the recent report by Amnesty International on the casualties of the last 2 years of Intifada. The, well, money quote: "Abu-Mazen [a top PA official] told the Al-Rai newspaper on June 20 this year, that the terrorist organizations paid children in Rafiah [in the Gaza strip] 5 NIS [about $1] to throw explosives on IDF soldiers. 40 of the children lost limbs as a result". The original interview in Arabic can be found here.


Pop Quiz follow-up As I said it was all about perceptions. I was going to run with five questions but I needed it to be obvious so I stacked the deck. And as expected most of you correctly identified that all the answers are New Zealand. You then set out, not to actually answer the questions (particularly the ones that couldn’t be questioned) but to prove it was anything but New Zealand. I’m not going to provide the answers or their justifications, if you are interested please email me and I’ll send you the details along with the links. The actual answers were not the purpose of the exercise. The point was the general immediate desire to prove my position was in fact wrong, and defend you own position. Very few of you actually even acknowledged the very real contributions New Zealand has made to the world. Like lab mice you ran down the maze I built for you, rang the bell and got the cheese. One of you even used an identical argument against one Kiwis achievement then to support someone else’s. Not even consistent. So how open-minded are you? And the answer the bonus question: What country had the highest rate of volunteers during both world wars? is in fact Australia. Just a demonstration that you don’t have to feel threatened by another counties achievements.
Bloody Hell! Those wacky kids from Bagadad are screwing us over again and the UN is going to bend over and say thankyou while they do it. Explain to me why we are involved in "constructive" talks about the extent of unconditional access for weapons inspectors? Would someone like to drop by Sadam's place and explain the meaning of the word unconditional... take an army with you when you do it wont you. Sadam must be laughing his dick off right now.
Silent Running "Site of the Day" according to those trend setters with taste and discernement from Right Wing News. I wonder what we did? And someone want to point me in the direction of the "Easter Egg" that one of us apparently droped around here. Hey I just run the blog, doesn't mean I know whats going on.
TREASON TRIALS ANYONE? I feel that perhaps Bonoir and McDermott should be given the chance to return home to the United States and explain themselves on national TV. I want to see Jay Leno sit them down and then hit them with the old Hugh-Grant-style "What the HELL were you thinking?" Anything less than "We were held prisoner and pumped full of drugs while the Iraqi Mukharbarat held pistols to the heads of our families" isn't going to fly this time. Punditwatch gives them a hard time, and although I'm not an American, if I were I'd be looking for some ripe eggs to chuck at this pair next time they venture out in public.

ABC’s This Week had the most controversial coverage. Host George Stephanopolous interviewed Congressmen Jim McDermott, D-Wash, and David Bonior, D-Mich, live from Baghdad. A seemingly incredulous Stephanopolous heard McDermott claim that the President was misleading the world and that he should take the Iraqis’ word at face value. Bonior brushed aside questions about Saddam Hussein’s past behavior. “We could go back and play the blame game. I wish you would focus on what’s happened to the people of Iraq—the children.” During This Week’s roundtable, George Will called the McDermott-Bonior comments, “The most disgraceful appearance in my lifetime.” ABC’s Michele Martin just shook her head, noting, “This is why the Democrats are having such a hard time.”

David Bonoir - this week's winner of the Mrs Lovejoy Won't Someone PLEASE Think of the Children Award. Lets have a look at the situation on the feild and try to work out what the effect of this latest play is going to be. Okay, Bonoir is a half-bright Michigan pol who represents the 10th Congressional District, but who managed to lose the primary in his state's Gubernotorial race to Jennifer Granholm, despite the support of heavy-hitters such as The Michigan Sierra Club, Michigan Clean Water Action and Friends Of The Earth. It was a poor bet - having abandoned the 10th District for his shot at the big time, Republican Candice Miller is apparently tipped to beat his Democratic replacement Carl Marlinga, the winter book numbers giving her a 55.6% chance. Looks like Dave tried his luck at the top table and rolled snake-eyes. He's not so much a lame duck as a dead one. So he can open his mouth and let the wind blow his tongue around all he likes and it don't make no never mind, as they say in Texas and bad western movies. Okay, that's enough about Lame Duck Dave, how about Jim McDermott from the great state of Washington? He hs a head of white hair that makes him look like a refugee from Christian television, and a perfect score from the League of Conservation voters, but shoot, the winter book numbers indicate that nothing short of the Congressman being videotaped sodomising, murdering and eating an altar-boy (not neccessarily in that order) are going to shift him from the 7th District. It's as close to a lock as possible, 90% chance of re-election. So Jim can say pretty much whatever comes into his head and he'll STILL be back again. Okay, so for various resons, both these US parliamentarians can say what they like without any concerns about re-election. So what the hell are they doing talking trash about their own country on international TV for? According to a press release from McDermott's office, they're "part of a delegation organized by the Interfaith Network of Concern for the People of Iraq, a project of the Church Council of Greater Seattle, and LIFE for Relief and Development, a Michigan charity organization licensed by the United States and the United Nations to administer aid in Iraq." And who is the Interfaith Network of Concern for the People of Iraq when it's at home? One of the signatories of "The Iraq Peace Pledge", along with such usual suspects as the American Friends Service Committee, Education for Peace in Iraq Center, Fellowship of Reconciliation, Lutheran Peace Fellowship (boy, either the Lutherans I knew have changed beyond recognition, or they're been infiltrated and turned by political activists, gee, which do YOU think is more likely?), the National Network to End the War Against Iraq, Pax Christi USA, Peace Action, the Resource Center for Nonviolence and of course it's no show without Mr Punch - Voices in the Wilderness. And what does the peace pledge home page say? The power of the Campaign of Conscience for the Iraqi People lies in its nonviolent defiance of U.S. law. They want the sanctions lifted. That's it. Nothing about Saddam Hussein dismantling his WMD program, or not being a bloodthirsty sadistical tyrant or anything. It's all America's fault, America has to do this, America should stop doing that, America's bad for supporting something else, blah, blah, blah... Oh, I give up. Look, it's the United States, and they're your Congressmen, you deal with them. But I wouldn't be too happy with someone who did something like this and they were supposed to represent my country.
THOUSANDS MARCH ON CHENEY'S HOUSE That's the headline in Salon. The exact number of thousands? Two and a half. I bet he's trembling in his boots. When even AP starts writing copy that sounds like a warblogger giving the anti-war-anti-globalisation-down-with-capitalism-but-keep-subsidising-my-education crowd a good fisking, how far away can the end be?

Thousands of people opposing a war with Iraq marched to the residence of Vice President Dick Cheney on Sunday, culminating three days of smaller-than-expected demonstrations. Protesters, some holding signs that said "No Blood for Oil," blamed Cheney for pushing the nation toward war. Police estimated about 2,500 people turned out for the peaceful event.

Two and a half thousand. Nice one. Gonna try and storm the Winter Palace with two and a half thousand there Sparky?

Demonstrator threats to shut down the nation's capital and disrupt meetings of world financial leaders during the weekend fell flat and all protesters had evaporated from city streets by dusk Sunday. "It's been a highly successful couple of days," said David Levy, who was the only protest organizer to show up for a Sunday morning news conference to evaluate the demonstrations.

Where he gave an exclusive interview to the Green-Left People's Anti-Facist Anarcho-Syndicalist Global News Monthly, largely because they were the only publication to send a reporter along. Even then, it was largely because Levy had borrowed their collective's bullhorn and they needed it back. He tried to argue that property was theft, but the reporter was bigger than him...

Police had prepared for as many as 20,000 demonstrators, but during the largest event, on Saturday, a much smaller number filled a five-block long stretch of a four-lane street as they shouted opposition to policies of the World Bank and International Monetary Fund, which were holding their annual meetings nearby.

Okay people, please spread out, lets try and look like we're a big crowd, if you can touch the person nearest to you, you're too close.

"No, we didn't change the state of the global economy," said Zoe Baldwin, 21, a college senior from Garfield, N.J. "The main purpose for most of these demonstrations, it's basically a huge outreach tool."

Actually for Zoe, the outreach consisted of contracting genital herpes from a Georgetown senior, and in private she admits his tool really just wasn't that huge at all.


Ok Who Gave Iraq The Plan? Iraq has vowed to fight "to the death" if attacked. And here was me thinking that the Rebublican Guard was going to be read it's rights and given access to legal counsel!
Well That’s Good News For the Fox Hunters I Guess An anti War on Iraq protest in Britain attracted, allegedly 100 000 people in what has been described as a “massive turnout” and is "conclusive" evidence of anti war feeling. Last weeks pro fox hunting protest attracted more than four times that number so it's not looking too good for the foxes. Meanwhile the Auckland anti war march attracted "around 600". Oh please, 600? More people burn themselves on their latte in Auckland on a Friday afternoon. Please note as a keen student of military history I have put into practice the Roman habit of borrowing from the enemy. The lefts gratuitous use of the phrase "so called" for any information they don't like is morphing into "allegedly" (don't think we didn't notice Ken) and the placing of parentheses around anything just devalues the hell out it. Go forth and use it to your hearts content. Face it, when people care more about killing foxes than what you’re bleating about you might not be the majority anymore.