Tuesday, May 31, 2011

WND: You Idiots Should Give Us Money to Prove You're Not Gullible!

I'm no journalist.  I am -- not to boast -- a U.S. citizen, but since I only have a Social Security card, a passport, and a certified copy of my birth certificate from the County Registrar's office, I can't prove it to Joseph Farah's satisfaction, so I don't even qualify as a citizen journalist.  And even if I did, Mr. Farah was running newspapers into the ground long before I ever heard the word "blogger," so where do people like me get off criticizing his professional bona fides?

I have, however, seen The Grifters, The Flim-Flam Man, and more than a few Three Card Monte games, so I feel qualified to appreciate Mr. Farah's performance in other, though related industries.  For instance, his work as a human centrifuge designed to separate fools from their money, a career which began with his co-founding of the Western Journalism Center in 1991.  The WJC was a bit cagey about its mandate, but since it grew fat primarily by gorging on the corpse of Vince Foster, I assume it was intended as some sort of 501(c), advocacy-related super-maggot:
The Center helped fund Christopher W. Ruddy (who later founded NewsMax) to investigate conspiracies surrounding the death of Vincent Foster, which was part of the Arkansas Project. Eventually, "the Center placed some 50 ads reprinting Ruddy's Pittsburgh Tribune-Review stories...then repackaged the articles as a packet titled The Ruddy Investigation, which sold for $12." In addition, "Farah also bought full page ads publicizing Ruddy's allegations...the ad campaign brought in over $500,000, half from individual donors-many of whom bought Foster conspiracy materials-and half from foundations, including $100,000 from Carthage." The Carthage Foundation is controlled by Richard Mellon Scaife, whose foundations gave $330,000 to the Center in 1994 and 1995.
The Western Journalism Center spawned WorldNetDaily, which, though ostensibly a for-profit enterprise, still rakes in donations for special projects, such as the America De-beautifying "Where's the Birth Certificate?" campaign.  Soliciting funds from his readership, Farah put up billboards in such plum locations as Route 78 in Hamburg, Pennsylvania...
...and, by all appearances, not many other places.  But rural signage is expensive, and the campaign had a lot of overhead, not least of which was the cost of hiring Joseph Farah to cadge handouts from the WND readership (Farah's contract was known to include a lengthy rider covering such pricey demands as Voss water and a Lalique Crystal Bird-Form candy dish full of blue M&Ms, a pair of lederhosen for emergencies, and a bootblack to touch up his mustache).
"I have a dream," Farah said, "My dream is that IF Barack Obama even seeks re-election as presidentin 2012, he won't be able to go to any city, any town, any hamlet in America without seeing signs that ask, 'Where's the birth certificate?'
"It's a simple question," he said.
Unfortunately, Mr. Obama answered it in April, causing the birther bubble to burst, and Mr. Farah to wonder if he should have asked a slightly more complicated question; and also whether attacking the legitimacy of the first African-American President of the United States by misappropriating the words of a civil rights icon made him look like a racist douche-nipple with an insincere, rictus-like grin held in place by a strip of electrician's tape stretched across his upper lip.

But as the old saying goes, whenever God closes a door, he opens a window, allowing internet-borne mountebanks to sneak inside and steal your TV, your hand-held body massager, your cheap handguns, and your tackle box full of American Eagle bullion coins from Goldline.  And  sure enough, just as the market for crowdsourced calumny collapsed, Mr. Farah hit on the next innovation in turnip exsanguination: picking a legal fight you can't win, but which could conceivably drag on for years, and asking your readers to absorb the astronomical, but ill-defined costs, or what we might call the Jarndyce vs. Jarndyce Method.
To my 'terribly gullible audience' 
That's what Esquire's executive editor thinks of WND readers – my "terribly gullible audience."

That's what this effete snob said about you in his late "disclaimer" [...]  This was the "parody" the politically connected Mark Warren wrote about Jerome Corsi's "Where's the Birth Certificate: The Case That Barack Obama Is Not Eligible To Be President," the best-selling release published by WND Books. 
If you haven't seen the piece, I invite you to read it for yourself – as an example of the most shameful illustration of libel, defamation and tortious interference with a business you are likely to see committed by a major media outlet.
Actually, it's just a sad example of bad satire.  Or a good illustration that not everybody can be The Onion.  Mark Russell ≠ Tom Lehrer.  Red Skelton's oil painting entitled "Sad Faced Clown" is < than Caravaggio's Conversion of St. Paul, but they're all working within the same respective mediums.  It's not easy to write good satire, but apparently it's almost impossible to commit libel, judging by how rarely anyone bothers to sue WND for it.  Because on the average day, Mr. Farah and his employees make a multitude of assertions far more damning than "Oops, one of our books has been exposed as bullshit -- this time, in real time -- so we're going to pretend to have a sense of shame and resist pimping it."
 It's still there – in all of its infamy. Unretracted. No apology. No offer of recompense from one of the largest and wealthiest privately held companies in the world. 
Historically, large and wealthy corporations are not in the habit of offering apologies, recompense, or admissions of guilt, so I am perhaps not as shocked by this turn of events as is Mr. Mustache.  I'm also not sure what they would apologize for in this particular instance -- hiring a crappy writer?  If that was a crime, Joe -- who employees Ellis Washington -- would be doing consecutive life sentences at the Pelican Bay Supermax.
And that's why I am, at considerable expense...
WND readers can save time by reaching for their wallets now.
...filing a lawsuit against Mark Warren, Esquire and the Hearst Corporation – because I believe this attack piece, if unchallenged, will further define down our standards for the politics of personal destruction in the media.
If we can't defend our high standards for the politics of personal destruction in the media, then maybe we don't deserve WND.  I mean look at the fine materials and quality craftsmanship used in their personal destruction -- and they're just giving it away!

 
I'm also asking for your generous support for this campaign because I don't have the financial resources to take on the Hearst Corporation alone.
And by "giving it away," I mean "for a non-tax deductible donation."  
This is not just a spat between two media companies – one big and one little.
It's not even a spat between two media companies -- that's how uneven it is!  It's more like the epic conflict between a giant sequoia and a Teacup Shih Tzu with a full bladder.
This is much bigger than that.

This is a battle between the old establishment media, that fails to hold politicians like Barack Obama accountable, and the new independent media epitomized by WND – that risks everything to perform that indispensible watchdog role in what remains of our "free society."
"We're so independent we're dependent on you.  And we don't even know you.  But we'll still take your personal check."
It's also a fight between you and the impudent pretenders in the corridors of power who look down their noses at all those with whom they disagree.
Hm, it appears there's been a palace coup in the corridors of power, and the effete snobs have been replaced by the impudent pretenders.  Sometimes it's a little exhausting to keep up with all this Kremlinology.
You're just my "terribly gullible audience."

I know you are anything but gullible – and you're not just an "audience."
You're also a "dumb" of "pigeons" if I remember my collective nouns.
Those who write to me at WND know I interact with you daily. Try getting that kind of attention from the owner of Esquire or Fox News or CNN.
I admit that I have never been panhandled by William Randolph Hearst.
I know times are tough – thanks in no small part to the man in the White House who is, one way or another, behind this attack on us.
I also suspect that Obama is ultimately responsible for the recent discovery of salmonella in certain shipments of Skippy® Reduced Fat Creamy® Peanut Butter, if only by way of Original Sin.
 But I need your financial help in any amount you can provide – even if it's just a couple bucks.
I also need your encouragement and your prayers.
I'll alert my Muslim and Hindu friends.  Given the strength of your case, Joe, you're probably going to want to cast a wide theological net.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Dr. Mike: Misused Word to Your Mother

As a frequent visitor to the right-wing blogosphere, I've noticed that the trade in snappy comebacks has developed a certain quality of deja vu -- one which reminds me of the exploitation and horror film market on the old pre-Giuliani 42nd Street.

Back before the area was sanitized and Disneyfied for your protection, the same double and triple bills used to bounce up and down the block, eventually hitting every reeking grindhouse between 7th and 8th Avenues.  If you missed The Love Butcher, Don't Answer the Phone, and I Dismember Mama when they played a split-week engagement at the Lyric, don't worry -- you could always catch them the following month at the Rialto or the Empire.  In fact, movies with just the right touch of gore, nudity, fetishism, or race-hatred could play the Deuce (under a variety of titles) for a decade or more.  And so it is with the bumper sticker wisdom beloved of wingnut pundits, bloggers, and comment trolls.

These rejoinders come in a few different flavors, but they're no Baskin-Robbins when it comes to variety.  There's the mocking 2-point reversal ("How's that Hopey-Changey thing working out for ya?"), in which the victim's own starry-eyed mantra is turned against him.  There's the Dennis Miller-quality comic paradox ("How come abortion is a choice, but meat is murder?").  But the one I seem to run into the most is the inescapable checkmate move practiced by 3-Dimensional Rhetorical Chess Masters like Dr. Professor Mike Adams: "If you 'tolerant' liberals are so tolerant, then how come you're intolerant of my intolerance?"  Now I admit, this is a classic gambit, every bit as revered as the Catalan Opening, or the Semi-Slav Defense, but this week the Doctor Professor gives this venerable wordplay a brilliant new twist by developing aphasia halfway through his column.
Profiles in Tolerance

Last month, I was standing at the podium getting ready to give a lecture when I noticed a young woman had her laptop computer out. I was amused when I saw that the outside of her computer was adorned with a bumper sticker that said “TOLERANCE” in big white letters. I ignored her plea for tolerance as I demanded that she put her computer up during the lecture. I simply don’t “tolerate” students who pretend to take notes on their laptops while they are, in fact, surfing the net and posting on Facebook.
I wonder if Dr. Mike would have been quite so strict if the coed's computer had been sporting one of the other bumper stickers I've seen at Cafepress, such as "Be Glad Your Mother Was Pro-Life," or, "Everything I Know About Islam I Learned On 9/11."
But I do seriously wonder whether she – or any other student promoting tolerance - really understands what the word means. It is unlikely that she does given that most of her professors do not understand what it means. Like catatonic schizophrenics, professors often mindlessly repeat words they don’t understand.
For Dr. Mike, that one, maddening word he can't quite grasp is "clitoris."  Oftentimes he'll stop a lecture dead for fifteen or twenty minutes, while he squats behind his lectern, muttering the term over and over again in a desperate, but futile attempt to force meaning from its seemingly random collection of nonsense syllables...

"Cuh-lye-TOR-iz...?  Cleet-or-ees?  Cull-eetoe-IS...?  Clitoris clitoris bo Bitoris!  Banana fanna fo Fitoris!  Fe fi mo Mitoris!  CLITORIS!"
And, arguably, “tolerance” and “diversity” are among the most repeated and least understood words in higher education today.
They are also among the most repeated and least understood words in Dr. Mike's column today.  And most days.
To illustrate my point, I am including (below) an email I recently received from a UNCW sociologist we’ll call “Tolerant Rob.” It was the third email I received announcing the showing of a pro-homosexual film at the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Questioning, Inter-sexed, and Allied Center at UNC-Wilmington:
The fact that Tolerant Rob has sent three emails about a "pro-homosexual film" to Dr. Mike suggests that Rob is the biggest optimist since Dr. Pangloss, or the biggest dick since Dr. Mike, so it's kind of sweet that they've found each other.
“Gentle folks~ I know that I'm ‘taking a chance’ forwarding this to you all. I know that some are intolerant, unaccepting and ‘not comfortable’ with ‘the gay lifestyle’. But someone has to have some huevos around here and that would be me.
Rob
According to the synopsis of the film, Jim in Bold, on IMDB:  "Jim Wheeler was a young gay poet and artist, who was the victim of extreme homophobia while growing up in rural Pennsylvania. In 1997, alone in a cold room, Jimmy took his own life. Five years later, armed with a video camera and Jim's poetry, three members of Young Gay America embark on a cross-country road trip, interviewing gay and lesbian youth in the heartland of America. Their stories show not only the struggles many gay and lesbian youth still face, but also the progress and strength demonstrated every day by simply being yourself."

So the film is intended to give isolated, at-risk youth the sense that their lives have meaning, and they are not alone, while also giving Dr. Mike an excuse to pop an oppression erection.
The first and most amusing thing you probably noticed about this email is that Tolerant Rob congratulates himself on the courage he exhibited in sending it. Of course, that is debatable since I am the only conservative Republican on the list of professors to whom it was sent. The other two dozen professors in my department are either independents or registered Democrats. Several are Marxists and almost all of them are staunch supporters of the so-called “gay rights” movement. So sending this email to the department is about as courageous as sending a racist email to a bunch of Klansman.
 Actually, it's more like sending a copy of Martin Luther King's "I Have a Dream" speech to a bunch of civil rights workers, and one Klansman.
Tolerant Rob sent the alert out with a judgmental statement that not only applauds his personal courage but characterizes those who disagree with him as “intolerant” and “unaccepting.”

In other words, Tolerant Rob is not willing to tolerate intolerance. Nor is he willing to accept un-acceptance. At this point, you may be wondering whether Tolerant Rob actually spends much time thinking about what he actually thinks.
Seems pretty clear to me what T.R. thinks.  Or is a refusal to accept bigotry really just a sign that you're incapable of appreciating the nuances of the bigot point of view?  I don't know, but I suppose Rob has as much chance of persuading Dr. Mike to quit being a homophobe by talking up an anti-homophobia documentary as Dr. Mike has of convincing female college students to become anti-abortion activists by drilling holes in live cats on the steps of the UNC-Wilmington Women's Resource Center.
The point that Tolerant Rob lacks tolerance of those of us who subscribe to the Judeo-Christian worldview is too obvious.
I wonder if Christ, who never spoke against homosexuality, ever feels left out of the Judeo-Christian worldview (at least, as it's defined by folks like Dr. Mike).  I mean, his name's right on the label!  It's like Libby the Kid being barred from Libbyland.
In fact, he is so intolerant and unaccepting of those he considers intolerant and unaccepting that he must underline the words “intolerant” and “unaccepting.” What is less obvious is that he also lacks tolerance towards homosexuals.
Stand by, ladies!  Dr. Professor Mike is about to don a dashiki and get his philosophical freak on!
Let me make this as clear as possible by using bold letters: Tolerance presupposes a moral judgment. 
Or it presupposes that moral judgments based on Bronze Age religious dogma and tribal mores are arbitrary, based on tradition, habit, superstition and personal taste, and are deserving of the same respect you would give to a Thanksgiving dinner guest who abhorred organ meats and yams.  In other words, you'd dish out their portions accordingly, but you wouldn't deny the rest of the party their sweet potato pie and giblet gravy.
Therefore, if Tolerant Rob claims to approve of homosexual conduct he cannot simultaneously claim to tolerate it.
Speaking of using words you don't understand...Dr. Professor Mike seems to think that "tolerance" of homosexuals and homosexuality means "barely suppressing your constant, boiling rage about didoes and buttsex," or at best, "stoically enduring the outrageous, Judeo-Christian-mocking existence of dykes and fairies."

Now, I hate to join the ranks of people who mistake a dictionary definition for an argument, but since the Unpromoted Professor brought up reading comprehension, let's see what lexicographers have to say on the subject.  First, the low-rent Dictionary.com:

tol·er·ance

[tol-er-uhns] –noun
1. a fair, objective, and permissive attitude toward those whose opinions, practices, race, religion, nationality, etc., differ from one's own; freedom from bigotry.
2. a fair, objective, and permissive attitude toward opinions and practices that differ from one's own.
3. interest in and concern for ideas, opinions, practices, etc., foreign to one's own; a liberal, undogmatic viewpoint.
4. the act or capacity of enduring; endurance: My tolerance of noise is limited.
It seems that most human beings, when discussing the virtues of tolerance, are using the first and most common definition, while Dr. Professor Mike seems to be relying exclusively upon number 4: "suffering through Blaine and Kurt's kiss on Glee while snarling and dry-clicking my revolver at the TV."  But what does the venerable Merriam-Webster have to say...?
1: capacity to endure pain or hardship : endurance, fortitude, stamina
2 : sympathy or indulgence for beliefs or practices differing from or conflicting with one's own b : the act of allowing something : toleration
3: the allowable deviation from a standard; especially : the range of variation permitted in maintaining a specified dimension in machining a piece
4a (1) : the capacity of the body to endure or become less responsive to a substance (as a drug) or a physiological insult especially with repeated use or exposure <developed a tolerance to painkillers>; also : the immunological state marked by unresponsiveness to a specific antigen (2) : relative capacity of an organism to grow or thrive when subjected to an unfavorable environmental factor
So it doesn't seem that when Mr. Rob issues a plea for tolerance, what he really means is "please silently suffer these hell-bound boys and men whose incorrect use of the penis gives Jesus the heebie-jeebies."
If that doesn’t make sense then let me illustrate with a few examples.
*I approved of the decision to include Anna Kournikova in the annual swimsuit issue of Sports Illustrated. Therefore, it is not possible for me to “tolerate” seeing her in the magazine wearing a bikini.
 Well, since Dr. Professor Mike is a strict adherent to the Judeo-Christian worldview, wouldn't he be inclined -- obliged, even -- to condemn Anna Kournikova for flaunting her half-naked body before millions of men who are not her husband?  Or is Dr. Mike's need to conclusively establish to the world that he doesn't hunger for Jack Wrangler or Jeff Stryker to treat his ass like Ma Ingalls treats a butter churn sufficient cause to relax the worldview just this once?
*I approved of the decision of Springfield Armory to send me a free personally engraved .45 semi-automatic handgun. Therefore, it was not possible for me to “tolerate” their benevolence.
And I imagine Springfield Armory will neither approve nor tolerate the lawsuits they'll be hit with by the survivors of Dr. Mike's inevitable (though still hypothetical) shooting spree at the Independence Mall in Wilmington, NC.
The problem with sociologists like Tolerant Rob is twofold: 1) They often use words they do not understand, and 2) They often claim to be morally superior to others because they do not believe they are morally superior to others.
Yet I suspect even Humpty Dumpty might point out to Dr. Mike that there's a difference between making a word mean what you want it to mean -- nothing more and nothing less -- and just being a douche-powered Water Wiggle.
The logical incoherence of moralistic relativists can be annoying. But we need to show them toleration and acceptance. They didn’t choose to be sanctimonious hypocrites. They were probably born that way.
And while there is yet no conclusive scientific proof of a so-called "jerk gene," many men cannot remember a time when they did not feel somehow "different" from their non-idiot friends.  Some, like Dr. Mike, claim that they knew as early as age five that they were assholes.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Post-Friday Beast Blogging: The Cat Scan Edition


Riley:  C'mon, explode!...Ex-PLODE!  Why isn't it working...?  Somebody get David Cronenberg on the phone!

A Moment of Silence. And a Booster Seat.

By now I'm sure you've heard the bitter news: that Mitch (The Bantam Menace*) Daniels has declined  to run for President, 'cause his legs too short to kickbox with God.

Certainly there are stupider, loonier, even drabber candidates out there vying for the Republican nomination, and you may have already picked a particular bipedal train wreck to root for, hoping your preferred candidate will go the distance and delay crashing before he or she can get up a good head of steam and take out a load-bearing wall at the Gare Montparnasse.
But I think we can all agree that Daniel's withdrawal represents a tragedy for aficionados of snark and schadenfreude, because his participation in the race meant that Bats Left/Throws Right would have become to Midwestern States Governed By Surly Megalomaniacs With Napoleonic Complexes* what Mudflats was to Palin.  I would have gladly paid 3D ticket prices to see a cable news personality recite even a single Riley quote in the vicinity of David Brooks, before the anchor's tongue inevitably turned to ash in his mouth and he concluded the segment by vomiting steam and pyroclasts like Eyjafjallaj√∂kull.

So please join me in a moment of silence for What Might Have Been.

*© Doghouse Riley

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Unlicensed Psychotherapy for Imaginary Ailments

Very sorry about the lack of posts lately. Mary has been sick (sick enough that she was put on a nearly month-long medical leave), so I've been distracted and not really in the mood for wingnuts. But as she's on the mend now and back at school, I took a quick glance at American Thinker, and it seems that former licensed psychotherapist and current so-nutty-you-could-sell-her-in-a-Stuckey's psychoblogger Robin of Berkeley is trying to get us to leave Obama, take the kids, and go back to our mother country.
Why Obama is Just Not That Into You

There's a psychologist who can predict with 91% accuracy whether a relationship will live or die. His name is Dr. John Gottman, and he runs something called The Marriage Clinic.
It sounds like a place where couples can seek counseling, but it's actually more like an OTB parlor. Over the past decade, Dr. Gottman has raked in hundreds of thousands of dollars betting on how frequently his clients will divorce; but while his foolproof system has made him a very rich man, his gambling has kept him out of the Marriage and Family Therapist Hall of Fame.
Gottman uses several factors to determine which marriages will succeed or fail. But the main one is this: contempt. If a spouse mocks the other, talks down to him, rolls eyes, or sneers, that marriage is a goner.
...or it's the basis for a hit family sitcom.
Gottman's seminal research reminds me of my friend, Laura, and her relationship with boyfriend, Justin. [...] It was a knot-in-the-stomach experience spending any time with them.
I suspect the feeling was mutual, Robin.
While Laura was generally sweet and supportive, Justin would continually put her down.

Sometimes, it was subtle, for instance, an eye roll or a sarcastic remark.
Maybe it's just me, but Justin and Laura seem less like Ike and Tina and more like Will and Grace.
Justin's pomposity is small potatoes compared to someone as contemptuous as our current President.
It's like Obama can't get through a single White House briefing without rolling his eyes at Laura.
Obama's arrogance has been crystal clear from the start. He sneered at Hillary Clinton during a debate: "You're likable enough." Obama then demonstrated the class of a l3-year-old by using his middle finger to gesture about Hillary, menacingly.
I don't know, Robin...I mean, I see how the old "forefinger across the throat" gesture is menacing, but can you flip someone the bird menacingly?  Or, more to the point, can you flip the bird about someone menacingly?

And if so, can all gestures be informed by menace?  For instance, the thumb-to-ear/pinkie-to-mouth "Call me" gesture?  Yes, because if you pull it away from your head, and give it a little shake, it becomes the shaka "Hang Loose," gesture, which is Hawaiian, and as we have learned in the past couple years, Hawaii is the world's largest Muslim country.

What about the hand-cupped-to-ear gesture, is that a menace to society?  If so, then Ronald Reagan was straight up gangsta.

The palms-turned-up "Meh" gesture?  I guess so, but who cares.  Air quotes?  More obnoxious than menacing.  Finger-guns?  No, of course not.
Okay, a little.
Obama presented former UK Prime Minister, Gordon Brown, with DVDs of American films that couldn't be played on British machines.
It's one thing to beat the Germans' Enigma cipher machines and decode their military secrets, but it's a little unreasonable to expect the British to cope with a Region 1 DVD.
Our classy Prez gave the Queen an iPod loaded with his speeches.
The Queen actually requested a video iPod to replace her older model, but while Obama did not in fact "load [it] with his speeches," the White House did add footage from the Queen's 2007 state visit to the U.S., which means it contained endless shots of Her Majesty making conversation with George W. Bush, which is a little like standing behind a veteran who's finally beginning to recover from PTSD and popping a paper bag.
But the quintessential dissing of our Mother Country had to be Obama's return of a bust of Winston Churchill, bestowed on the US by former Prime Minister Tony Blair after 9/11. 
Of course, the bust was just on loan, and it was returned to the British Embassy before Obama took office, but I think Robin is onto to something here.  The next time my Russian neighbor asks me where that rug-steamer is that I borrowed, I'll just say, "Well Vadim, since you you bestowed it on me, I felt like I couldn't just give it back, or I'd be dissing the Romanov Dynasty."
Apparently, the UK has taken note of Obama's bad manners; Barack and Michelle were excluded from the guest list of the party of the decade -- the Royal Wedding.
As were all other foreign heads of state who were not also members of foreign royal families.  Reagan was invited to the Royal Wedding of Charles and Diana, but didn't go, partly because no sitting U.S. President has attended the nuptials of foreign royalty and he didn't wish to set a precedent, and party because he was confused by Di's hair-do and thought she was Dorothy Hamill.
Obama's contempt is so far reaching that it transcends beyond the human realm.
 He once told Odin he thought the Rainbow Bridge connecting Asgard to Midgard "looked fruity," and has openly mocked the Frost Giants inability to dunk.
Even God is not exempt from Obama's hubris. Obama mocks the Bible, leaves God out of the Constitution, and covers up crucifixes at the College of Notre Dame.
It's even worse than you know, Robin, because Obama has apparently broken into my apartment, and removed God entirely from my copy of the Constitution!  I searched the whole thing, from the Preamble to the 27th Amendment, and not a sign of Him.
Even more disturbing about Obama is not what he does, but what he fails to do -- most especially, protect this country
...from stains and mildew with Scotch Guard®.
Obama allows Radical Islam to grow unfettered from within and without.
Apparently "grow unfettered" is one of those wimpy, politically correct euphemisms for "shoot in the head."
And talk about playing favorites...Obama practices reverse racism by preferring his brothers above all others. Obama's DOJ refuses to prosecute the New Black Panthers, through they threaten to kill "cracker babies." 
Well, I see Robin's pledge to take a moment each day to take Pride in her Whiteness is really paying off.  "Every day, and in every way, I'm getting bigoter and bigoter."
According to a DOJ whistleblower, the department will investigate no injustices against whites.
(Actually, what the department said was, they will sell no wine before its time.)
But we're not just talking egotism here. Even those presidents who were full of themselves still loved this country. There's something deeper and darker at work here: and it is contempt, if not outright hatred. 
Has there ever been an American President more contemptuous of his own people than Obama? Has any other President been as ungrateful for the honors bestowed on him?
And he'll probably show his ingratitude by returning those honors at the end of his term of office, thereby insulting the Queen (no, not Elizabeth, I mean one of our many fine American varieties of Queen -- Drag, Ellery, or Dairy).
The question here is: Why? Why does Obama turn his nose up on everyone else? Why does he see himself as a gift to mankind?

Perhaps it all started with his radical family who disliked this nation and viewed little Barry as the Great Black Hope. While all parents see their little tykes as special, young Barry may have gotten a Messiah Complex.
While Arnold Schwarzenegger, another egotistical, power-hungry politician who was born overseas, may have gotten a Herpes Simplex.  Unrelated?  Perhaps, but I know which one I'd rather have kiss my baby.
As an adult, Obama hooked up with revolutionaries who fed the delusion that he was the Second Coming. For instance, Black Muslim leader Louis Farrakhan preached to his flock that Obama was the Black Messiah. Obama himself told Harry Reid that he has a "gift."
And his "gift" is "wrapped," if you know what I mean, which is why he, unlike Schwarzenegger, doesn't have any little bastards running around.  Anyway, I'd be a lot more excited about all this if Farrakhan had told Obama he was the Black Samurai.
But why wouldn't Obama see himself as special? He's like most leftists who view themselves as saviors with grandiose schemes to save the world. Why wouldn't Obama and the left regard themselves as superior -- aren't they going to outshine God by configuring a heaven on earth?
The only problem I have with this plan is that our national anthem will be a Belinda Carlisle song.
Feel the menace, bitchez!

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Post-Friday Beast Blogging: The Felis Superior Edition

Riley:  Let's see...I'm perched uneasily atop his chair, wearing her bra around my neck...What else can I do to enhance my personal dignity...?
Moondoggie has that same dream again, where he's Supergirl's cat Streaky, and they are soaring over Metropolis together, the sun in their faces, the wind whipping through her hair and ruffling his pelt, and it is all so glorious! But soon it will devolve, as it always does, into an ugly, brutal mid-air battle with Comet the Superhorse over their shared, if unnatural, passion for her.

But for now...Zoom!

Friday, May 13, 2011

The Socialist Network

Welcome back. As you probably noticed, Blogger was down for a day or so, but that doesn't mean the March of Time took a breather.  No, while this and other blogs lay fallow, HUMAN EVENTS and Redstate were goin' to the mountaintop to demand that Facebook be treated like any other public utility, by which I assume they mean, privatized, then looted by Enron.
Human Events/Redstate Facebook Petition
Dear Mr. Zuckerberg:

We, the editors and staff of HUMAN EVENTS and RedState.com, and the tens of thousands of Americans who have attached our signatures to this petition...
Distinguished, prominent, real Americans like Mike Hunt, Nebraska State Senator Hugh Jass, Dr. Ivana Humpalot, Ambassador Heywood Jablome, real estate mogul Seymore Butz, and California State University, Fresno Professor Incontinentia Buttocks.
…salute your success in creating an extraordinary medium through which millions of people can make their voices heard.
It’s like the purity of ancient Greek democracy, if the citizens of Athens had used the Ecclesia primarily to post cat videos and declare themselves Mayor of the Steak Corral.
We also applaud your recognition that Facebook is now an influential public platform and key vehicle for political expression.
Because it's usually pretty tough to get wealthy narcissists to admit their cash cow is the shit.
Your recent Town Hall with President Obama held on April 20, 2011 was an impressive example of that.  However, given Facebook’s dominance of the internet...
Yes, I remember when there was lots of stuff on the internet -- newspapers, blogs, Youtubes, Japanese rope bondage tutorials, bicycle sprocket dealerships with their virtual "shopping carts," knitting patterns, pornography, and, of course, galleries of lovingly scanned menus from extinct restaurants -- but now it's just Farmville, sneaky, ill-advised changes to relationship status, and blurry photos of your toe fungus taken while drunk and posted in the middle of the night.
...we believe Facebook has a duty to provide “equal time” to the eventual Republican candidate, just as the other private media companies that control the public airwaves are required to do.
"And were, in fact, required to do about all issues of public importance, before Reagan eliminated the Fairness Doctrine in 1987, which nobody better even THINK about trying to revive, because it would be the moral equivalent of an assassination attempt on Rush Limbaugh. But even though Facebook doesn’t use the public airwaves, we’d like you to pretend we never gutted the law and that it applies to you, even though it wouldn’t even if we hadn’t. Mm-kay?"

Anyway, I look forward to Human Events and Redstate making in-kind contributions of space and time to Barack Obama's campaign, because when your website controls the public airwaves, you must be like Caesar's wife, above suspicion, unless Caesar is married to Meghan McCain, in which case we'll bend the rules if she wants to tweet pix of her cleavage.
We hereby respectfully ask that you recognize your opportunity and responsibility to provide equal time to both sides of the national political debate...
To demonstrate just how sincere is their respect, here's Human Events editor Jason Mattera trying to pull a Daily Show by pretending to interview badly edited footage of Mark Zuckerberg.  (Spoiler Alert: Jason makes poo-poo and sexytime jokes):
Jason Mattera Demonstrates Why Political Humor Should Come with a Child-Proof Cap.
...by pledging that you will invite the eventual Republican presidential nominee to share the stage with you at a Town Hall event identical to that which you held for President (and candidate) Obama.
Identical in every respect, except the Republican will almost certainly be white, so you won’t need to ask him to provide two forms of photo I.D.
We believe that not doing so will be a violation of the trust millions of Americans have placed in Facebook.
I guess I haven't been getting my money's worth out of Facebook, because I primarily trust it as a source of Happy Birthdays, Super-Poking Penguins, and bitter complaints that the new "German Chocolate Cake Sipper" cocktail at Fridays is not literally a cake you can drink.
Your members include people of all political persuasions, including more than fifty million right-leaning Americans. 
I'm pretty sure Jason just pulled that figure out of his ass, perhaps during the bathroom break he took in the middle of the Zuckerberg interview.  Anyway, there are more women on Facebook than men, and women tend to vote Democratic,  especially in years when Republicans are offering a new anti-choice bill every other day, so by all means let's let demographics to determine the political content we're allowed to ignore.
That Facebook co-founder Chris Hughes helped lead Obama's 2008 online campaign already gives many of us reason to believe you lean 100% opposite.
Is it possible to lean 100%?  At a certain point (50%?  90% at the most?) wouldn't you be falling, and then eventually lying down?
Failing to give equal time to the Republican presidential nominee will further position Facebook squarely and irredeemably as a biased, untrustworthy member of the liberal media — just another political tool where censorship rules — rather than a free and open public gathering place. At risk will be the loyalty of countless right-leaning Facebook members.
Outraged and disappointed right wingers might refuse to post Photoshopped images of chimps with Obama's face as an act of passive resistance.  Oath Keepers and Neo-Nazi militias might switch to Evite to arrange their meet-ups, and Sarah Palin might stop posting her selections from The Protocols of the Elders of Zion, which would be just as frustrating as the time my second grade teacher started reading Where The Red Fern Grows to us the second week of June, then suddenly school was over for the year and we never found out how it ended!
We urge you to recognize the legitimacy of our request...
...by not tittering behind your hand like that.
...by posting your pledge, as CEO, that Facebook will host the future Republican presidential nominee at a Town Hall meeting identical in all respects to that recently undertaken for President Obama.

Respectfully submitted,
Douglas C. Neidermeyer...Sergeant at Arms.

Oops, sorry...
HUMAN EVENTS/RedState.com Editors
Thank you, HUMAN EVENTS, for fighting on behalf of the little people, even though I know you're hoarse and have a sore throat from shouting your name all the time.  Now, if you wouldn't mind, would you contact the Twitter people and get them to address the gross disparity between my total followers and Ashton Kutcher's?  Thanks.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Happy Movie Mothers Day, by Bill S.

Today is Mother's Day, and to mark that occasion, here are my picks for the all-time worst movie moms -- depictions of motherhood that leave you all the more grateful for the mom you had (unless, heaven forbid, yours was worse.)
Listed chronologically.

Kate (Jo Van Fleet) in East of Eden (1955).  What can you say about a mom who leaves her kids to operate a whorehouse? I guess it could be worse -- she could have taken them with her.

"Mrs. Bates" in Psycho (1960). If you've seen the movie, you know why. If you haven't, I ain't ruining it for you.

Rose-Ann D'Arcey (Shelly Winters) in A Patch of Blue (1965). Batting your child around and letting your "boyfriends" rape the kid would be bad enough. But when your daughter's also blind, well, that just makes you extra evil-er.

Margeret White (Piper Laurie) in Carrie (1976).  "Your dirty pillows are showing." "They're called breasts, Mama. and every woman has them."

"Joan Crawford" (Faye Dunaway) in Mommie Dearest (1981). You knew I had to include her, didn't you? I'm not sure how much of Christina's claims are true (her siblings deny them), but the movie version of Joan is pretty ghastly.

Lilly Dillon (Anjelica Huston) in The Grifters (1990).  Faking her own death by killing her son's girlfriend would seem to be a low point. But later Lilly actually does sink lower.

Susan Aibelli (Alberta Watson) in Spanking the Monkey (1994).  And you thought Jeremy Davis had a bad mom on Lost. This could be the origin of the term "MILF".

Diedre Burroughs (Annette Bening) in Running With Scissors (2006). "Augusten, don't take my cigarettes. You have your own."

Mary (Mo'Nique) in Precious (2009). Throwing a TV set at your daughter is mean. And makes it harder to watch "Wheel of Fortune".

(I'd also like to add that, in listing these classic Bad Moms, I wasn't knocking either the films, or the actresses' portrayals. Jo Van Fleet, Shelly Winters and Mo'Nique all won Oscars for their respective roles, and Piper Laurie really should have won for Carrie.)

Did I miss any? Who'd be on your list?
-Bill S

Scott adds:  I would nominate Ma Jarrett (Margaret Wycherly) in White Heat (1949).

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Post-Friday Beast Blogging: The Hello and Eff-Off Edition

Moondoggie:  Tell me the truth...when my pupil gets all narrow like this, do I look like David Bowie in The Man Who Fell to Earth?

 Riley:  I can live without opposable thumbs, but Oh what I wouldn't give for a middle finger right now.

(click to embiggen, as they say on all the basset blogs)

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

When Bites the Beaver!

When I think of Adam Yoshida, I touch myself. No -- wait -- that's not right. What I mean to say is, I think of a Howard the Duck comic from 1976 in which Howard reluctantly battles Pierre Dentifrice, "Canada's Only Super-Patriot," whose beaver costume/exoskeleton grants him enhanced strength and...log-gnawing abilities? I don't really remember, it's been awhile.

The point is, back in the mid-70s, Canadian chauvinism was in short supply, so it would be only natural for an aspiring super-patriot like Adam to transfer his jingoism to the USA. But nowadays, there are plenty of crazy conservatives north of the 49th Parallel, and while they're small beer compared to our own nativists, oligarchs, and reactionaries, there's clearly room for advancement. Still, George W. Bush is the daddy that brung Adam to the Purity Ball, and the kid ain't gonna dance with another.
 Bin Laden's Death and the Vindication of George W. Bush
"Whether we bring our enemies to justice or bring justice to our enemies," declared President George Walker Bush nine days after 9-11, "justice will be done."  I've always thought that that speech, delivered to a Joint Session of Congress on September 20th, was the one of the finest Presidential orations of my lifetime -- certainly the best to be delivered in that place since either General MacArthur's 1951 Farewell speech or FDR's call for Congress to declare war against Japan. 
I don't know, Adam. Somehow, "Whether we bring our enemies to justice or bring justice to our enemies," doesn't sound like FDR, it sounds more like The Sphinx from Mystery Men...
"To learn my teachings, I must first teach you how to learn...He who questions training only trains himself at asking questions...When you can balance a tack hammer on your head, you will head off your foes with a balanced attack. "
Now it is a promise fulfilled and, as the details of the sensational operation that killed Osama bin Laden come to light, it is becoming increasingly clear that while all honor and credit for the successful execution of the mission must go to the superlative members of the United States Armed Forces, the strategic vision that brought this glorious moment into being was that of George W. Bush.
Wow, I've seen wingnuts sprout wood over The Decider before, but this is like someone put a pair of Dockers on a lodgepole pine.
Let's review what we know about bin Laden's death and how it came to be.
I believe it involved bullets.
The CIA was able to find him by tracking a courier.  This was a process that took years.
He walked kind of slow for a courier, liked to window shop, and stopped frequently to tie his shoe.
It actually began during the Bush Administration -- in 2007.  How did the Intelligence Community find the courier who eventually took them to bin Laden?  They found him through information gained from interrogating terrorist prisoners.
Ah, so it was after they claimed to have stopped waterboarding prisoners? Seems like the Bush Administration wasted a lot of washcloths and Aquafina for nothing.
Let's repeat that point because it needs to be emphasized.  Ultimately, bin Laden was found and killed as a result of information gained from the interrogation of a captured terrorist.  Actually, given all of the ink and pixels that have been spilled over this subject, it bears repeating one more time: bin Laden's death is a direct result of information gained from the interrogation of detainees, reportedly at the famed Guantanamo Bay prison camp.
But former CIA Director Michael Hayden said the information was gleaned at one of the Agency's "black sites," not Guantanamo. I guess it's true -- failure is an orphan, while success has a thousand Michael Lohan-style fathers.
Given what we now know, how many people still think that the opponents of Guantanamo Bay -- including the current resident of the White House -- were right when they screamed about its supposed inhumanity, plotted to close it, and vowed to move terrorist prisoners into civilian courts?  It would seem that George Bush and the defenders of his detainee policy were right all along.
Then why did they stop waterboarding Khalid Sheikh Mohammed after only 183 times? Especially when he hadn't given up the name of the courier? It's like Bush wussed out and lost the courage of his detainee policy; I bet when he stopped the indiscriminate use of torture, the first time he dropped his shorts his balls fell out like so many ping pong balls raining down on Captain Kangaroo.
The death of bin Laden and the broader course of the Global War on Terror during the two and a half years of the Obama Administration reflect the reality that the policies of the Bush Administration in this area, for all of the hysterical condemnation and calumny they endured, were the best and most reasonable response to 9-11 available to the United States and to the world. 
The Bush Doctrine ("In what sense, Charlie?"): When in danger or in doubt, run in circles, scream and shout.
The continuity of American anti-terror policy appears to have been the key to the success of this operation.
Yep. Bush closed the CIA office dedicated to catching Bin Laden, and Obama reopened it.  Continuity!
The courier was identified under Bush
But Bush had already ordered SEAL Team Six to assassinate the shrubbery on his ranch, so Bin Laden had to wait until the Pentagon could send a guy over to the Home Depot in a pickup truck to hire some day laborers.
This is the realization of the sort of "patient justice" that President Bush promised a decade ago when he declared, "Americans should not expect one battle, but a lengthy campaign, unlike any other we have ever seen.  It may include dramatic strikes, visible on TV, and covert operations, secret even in success.  We will starve terrorists of funding, turn them one against another, drive them from place to place, until there is no refuge or no rest." 
Or we might just get bored and attack another country that had nothing to do with 9/11.
That is a vision that was made into a reality in the years that followed, as the United States and its real allies waged a relentless campaign against al-Qaeda and its leader that, ultimately, left it without any refuge anywhere in the world.
Except for a really nice McMansion down the street from the Pakistani West Point. Still, Bush forced him to move out of that cave in the mountains.
I have increasingly grown to appreciate the vision and adult leadership that President Bush provided. 
While I have come to appreciate the dictatorship and adult diapers that President Bush provided.
It is clear to me that the course he chose after September 11th, even if it often left me impatient and eager for more stark and dramatic results, was the correct one -- a middle course between one that would leave America more vulnerable to terrorism and an extreme one that might have instantly brought on the sort of global Holy War that bin Laden desired.
In my foolish headstrong youthfulness, I earned for efficiency and results, but President Bush showed me that the answer, as always, is stasis and mediocrity.
And, in this area, we ought to at least credit President Obama for having the flexibility to, after spending years criticizing them, quietly recognize the wisdom of President Bush's policies and to adopt so many of them as his own.
Not all his policies -- Obama clearly couldn't see the wisdom of Bush's decision to break up with Bin Laden ("I don’t know where he is. I really just don’t spend that much time on him, to be honest with you.") and get on with his life and date another Arab boogeyman. Still, you'll notice that even though Bush has been gone from the White House for over two years, there aren't any tumbleweeds on the South Lawn.
Of course, this does not mean that the war is over.  Far from it.  Final victory will be a product of eternal vigilance.  The great unfinished challenge in this war remains the threat posed by Iran and, of course, recent events also show us that a new framework for dealing with Pakistan has to be found.
We should probably get organized. Tell you what, let's make a list of the countries we're not at war with. That way we can knock off early and beat the crowd to Beef 'N' Barrel.
I don't know about the rest of you but with both bin Laden and Saddam Hussein dead, I think that it's probably Muammar Gaddafi's turn next.
Mr. Yoshida then summed up by announcing that his aim in life is "to do SOMETHING BOLD AND DRAMATIC, FORCEFUL & DYNAMIC, A STATEMENT of my manhood for the world to see."
 
Wait -- check that. Sorry, I got Adam's column confused with the Arthur Bremer diaries.