The Watched

Gene Expression
Tim Blair
Scott Ganz
Glenn Reynolds
James Lileks
The Corner
Andrew Sullivan
Little Green Footballs
Stephen Green
Doctor Weevil
Pejman Yousefzadeh
The Anti-Idiotarian Rottweiler

They Like Us

". . . a monumental disappointment."
- Pejman Yousefzadeh

". . . simply pissing in to the wind."
- Weekend Pundit

". . . misguided passivists."
- Craig Schamp

". . . shares Ted Rall's fantasies of oppression."
- Max Powers

". . . pathetic waste of pixels."
- Daily Pundit

" . . . anarcho-leftist cowards."
- DC Thornton

". . . a good read, apart from the odd witchhunt."
- Emmanuel Goldstein

". . . quite insane."
- Richard Bennett

"There's many a boy here today who looks on war as all glory, but, boys, it is all hell." -- General William T. Sherman, Address, 1880

Keep Laughing

White House

(Note to literalists: the Watched column presently contains only a smattering of 'warblogs' because the facilitator of the template-change--Dr. Menlo--is not very familiar with them, and will be adding more as they are sent to him. Also, this blog may contain areas of allusion, satire, subtext, context and possibly even a dash of the surreal: wannabe lit-crits beware.)


[Watch this space for: Pentagon and Petroleum, The Media is only as Liberal as the Corporations Who Own Them, Wash Down With, and Recalcify]


Thursday, October 31, 2002


Bill Quick is running a most bloodthirsty warblog contest. When I first started up WBW I would have been all over it, but now it just kind of seems desperate and sad. Here are a few highlights, my last word, unless one of these nuts goes postal and starts picking off brown people with a Bushmaster:

Misha: Human tragedy: Sen. Wellstone was a lowlife Socialist Scumbag who will be missed only by other Socialist Scumbags, the likes of which will find themselves doing hard labor in the nearest uranium mine as soon as the Emperor assumes power. I'd piss on his grave if it wasn't for the fact that I wouldn't waste the money out of the Imperial Treasury to go there and do so. Besides, it's the only liquid sustenance that the Child Laborers in the Imperial Sweat Shops get and I wouldn't want to hurt the Empire's productivity.

IMAO: So, remember, while you may bring a pocket translator to better communicate with people of other languages and cultures, I pack a Colt .45.

Cato the Youngest: Who calls for the destruction of an entire city in every post, and most comments and e-mails? Who has wished, in the pages of his blog, that he could be the bombadier-navigator on a B-1B, loaded with 38 200-kT AGM-69 missiles, with orders to scour the Middle East with thermonuclear fire? Who has suggested that the Israelis could annihilate Egypt by breaking the Aswan dams, in order to drive people to high ground, then nuking them? Cato the Youngest.

Bill Simon: It's too bad that the IRA gave up setting bombs off in London. If they hadn't, I'd love to see the look on Johnathan Steele's face if he were to get blown apart in some pub or covering some troop review and his fellow Guardian columnists blamed the British policies in Northern Ireland for the bombing instead of the motherfucker who placed the bomb there in the first place.
Well, after the crime scene technicians scraped it off the walls and ceiling, that is. Maybe they could use a few copies of the Guardian to blot up some of the blood so they could re-open in time for the lunch crowd.

Grouchy Old Cripple: You Palestinians want a state? Kiss my ass! You bastards don't deserve a state. I say we move you all into the Gaza Strip and build a big ol' wall around it. You people are animals. You belong in cages.

There's more, but these fucks are just too pathetic to waste more than a few minutes on.


• • • • •

Wednesday, October 30, 2002


A few links

New York Times Photographer Staged News Picture of Arab Child Posing With Gun:

The controversial picture shows a 6-year-old boy aiming a toy pistol alongside a sign reading "Arabian Foods" outside a store in Lackawanna, N.Y., a suburb of Buffalo. The photo accompanied a Sept. 20 article about a group of Arab-Americans who have been accused of operating a cell of the al-Qaida terrorist network.

Yo Chuck, how much hate did that pic spawn over at LGF?

Remember the Anti-Idiotarian parody we published awhile back? The author, Damon Poeter, has a new article up at The Spleen: What Happens After the Inevitable Victory?

And via Bill Quick: Iraq debate plays out online:

The anti-administration, anti-war presence on the Web is overwhelming. Type in any term dealing with Saddam Hussein, Iraq or regime change, and hundreds of listings will pop up — on message boards and Web sites and in news stories.
There is a pro-invasion presence on the Net, but it is much smaller and exists mainly on message boards and in chat rooms.
“It’s about getting a damn tyrant out of Iraq, a guy who sponsors terrorism and produces weapons of mass destruction,” said one posting on a current events bulletin board. “We need to [get] rid of him because he’s just a few events away from using those weapons.”
However, unlike the sophisticated mobilization of the anti-war organizations, the Internet lacks a distinct pro-Bush administration presence.

Obviously MSNBC has Got A Clue.


• • • • •

Tuesday, October 29, 2002


Not that it was at all necessary, Larry Simon today furnishes a superfluity of evidence proving him to be an obnoxious moral cripple.

• • • • •


I have to say, Bush’s latest speech on the Iraq situation didn’t really clarify anything for me.

• • • • •

Monday, October 28, 2002


Scientists have long pondered the relationship between warbloggers and mullets. Enter into the empirical fray Exhibit A: Rich Hailey (pictured above), a self-described critic of our own Philip Shropshire. This new bit of evidence will most likely lead to a whole new set of questions for the beleaguered scientists, such as: what kind of mullet is this? And: are there any other warbloggers out there also sporting mullets?

The Pejman Mullet?

• • • • •

Sunday, October 27, 2002


Glenn Harlan Reynolds, Andrew Sullivan's "non-partisan totally partisan ally," intesifies his prejudice against Progress and hastens his retreat from Advancement. His latest pithy pronouncement on analogies between the present peace movement and that of the Vietnam era is maddeningly stupid and morally ugly beyond belief. After excerpting from Andrew Stuttaford who purports to show that the anti-war movement of the late 1960s and early 1970s factored in the destruction of Vietnam and the attendant mass deaths and horrendous maltreatment of the populace, Professor Reynolds writes, "And the campaigners remain proud of their success."

The Professor has never marshalled logic that was anything above flaccid, and he has never furnished proof on his warblog of any capacity for sustained and reasoned argument - and even less proof of a sense of moral decency. Even with his demonstrated inability to reckon where the equator lies, this is an audaciously low blow.

Though GHR allowed himself just eight words, I wonder if a lengthier treatment would have concerned itself with the crimes of colonialism, the viability and legitimacy of a South Vietnam as a state, and the massive unpopularity of the war stateside, most notably among returned servicemen. The unpopularity of falling bombs with the people of Southeast Asia is, for The Professor, a non-issue. They are, for the warbloggers, if not beneath contempt, then beneath recognition. Their intrusion would upset the feel-good stories that Glenn and his allied idiots scribble so assiduously.

As a corrective exercise, substitute the word "blog" for "story" in the following: "A true war story is never moral. It does not instruct, nor encourage virtue, nor suggest models of proper human behavior, nor restrain men from doing the things men have always done. If a story seems moral, do not believe it. If at the end of a war story you feel uplifted, or if you feel that some small bit of rectitude has been salvaged from the larger waste, then you have been made victim of a very old and terrible lie."

And the warbloggers remain proud of their success.

• • • • •

Saturday, October 26, 2002


Warblogger eulogy for Senator Wellstone:

Senator Wellstone, his wife, one of his daughters and 8 unnamed staffers died today in a tragic plane crash.

I am saddened to hear the news and my Christian heart goes out to the families and friends affected by the horror of this tragedy. May the Lord God lend you strength in the horrid and trying times to come.

That being said, I cannot find it in my heart to babble on about what a great loss to the nation that Sen. Wellstone's death was, 'coz it wasn't.

Sen. Wellstone was quite prepared to sell my fellow citizens down the river by opposing a pre-emptive strike against one of the most psychopathical murderers of our times, just so he could polish his halo and say that he was "against war".

He would happily condemn millions of my fellow countrymen to death in a chemical, biological or nuclear Hell to advance his own self-righteousness.

I don't give a flying fuck whether his stand was "principled" or "unaffected by pollsters", the only thing I care about is that he was ready to trade the lives of my two little boys for the transient glory of having been "moral".

As far as I'm concerned, this piece of traitorous shit can rot in Hell forever, I'm not ever going to say something nice about a load of crap that was willing to trade the future of my two boys for the fake halo of being "principled".

You can rot in Hell, Senator Wellstone, I couldn't care less.

But I DO care about your family and I pray that they will make it safely through the horrible times ahead.

But you, Sen. Wellstone, your death is not a "loss" to the nation, it's a a gain.

Shocked, but not surprised, just another deluded howl in the increasingly evil and sick cesspool that is warblogging.

- Eric A. Blair

Update: I wonder whom Lilek's latest Bleat is about?

This all seems obvious; why bring it up? I don’t know. I read stuff here and there that took glee in Wellstone’s death. Some folk seemed to think that a refusal to bury the hatchet and mutter the funeral liturgy was a Brave Stance, that the times cried out for a Truth Teller who branded Wellstone as the treasonous hell-bound scoundrel he really was. But there’s nothing brave about that. There’s no consequence aside from a few angry emails, scowls in the comments section, removal from a few visitors' bookmark lists. None of these people, if they had the opportunity, would say it to the face of anyone who had a loved one die in the plane crash. Hey, our prayers are with you, but I still think the man should writhe for eternity under Satan’s hoof. Sorry, but someone has to say it. They’d hold their tongue - either their own sense of decency would win the moment, or shame and cowardice would close their throat.

Of course, most commentators never have to worry about meeting anyone who suffered from Friday’s tragedy.

But it can be arranged. Interested?

The trouble with dancing on Wellstone’s grave is that you have to walk over several other graves to get there. The wife, the daughter, the aides, the pilots. Yes, yes, everyone’s sad they died, but that has nothing to do with the pernicious effects of the man’s beliefs, does it. Well, aside from the pilots, they all believed as Wellstone did. If he’s a traitor, a collectivist, a tyrant, a Stalin-in-shortpants, then they should join him in hell. No, they were just citizens, they didn’t have the power he had. Yes, the power to be half of the coalition that lost every 98-2 vote in the Senate. Get real. When he clambered out on the far boughs, he was usually alone. When he voted with the majority he did so in accordance with the issues of the party which, like it or not, represents the opinions of half of the country. For this he should go to hell? Okay, maybe not, but really: in the end run we’re better off that he’s dead. Cold but true.

Then that goes for all who believe as he did - including the young campaign aide on the trip, a guy in his early 20s. He believed a lot of nonsense. When I was his age I believed a lot of nonsense too. Perhaps the world would have been better if I’d gone down in a bog while I believed stupid things; there was no guarantee I’d ever change my mind, after all. There’s certainly no guarantee this young man wouldn't have changed his.

On Saturday we learned that this young man was a very close friend of a member of my wife’s family. It was one of those phone conversations where you get the entire gist by watching your wife’s face, listening to the few words she musters. I suppose I should be pleased, in an abstract way, since this means that there’s one less person to spread what I believe is a counterproductive approach to economics and domestic security. I suppose I should refuse to call him a good kid too, since he believed what his mentor believed. I suppose I should put on my best Mr. Potter face and snort that he got what comes to fools, and content myself with the knowledge that the Republic is better off without his breed of starry-hearted Tinkerbells.

But I can’t. You want to give it a try? Knock yourself out. Yank open the morgue drawer and shout at the dead. And if that strikes you as Brave, and that’s what you call Principle, and you believe this is the necessary reaction to the senseless expense of human life:


Some events trancend petty little right/left squabbles. May Senator Wellstone and those who died with him rest in Peace. Condolances to their family and friends.

- Eric A. Blair

• • • • •

Friday, October 25, 2002


Farewell to one of the good guys.

• • • • •



August 26, 1969 -- It was revealed today that followers of Tate-Lo Bianco killer Charlie Manson wrote "Helter Skelter" on the walls of the Tate house during their murderous rampage. "Helter Skelter" is the name of a song by the popular rock group The Beatles. Manson and his accomplices also possessed Beatles albums, authorities said, and had been known to listen to them "at high volume," according to eyewitnesses.

"I'm sure it's just a coincidence," said law professor Glenn Reynolds, directing reporters to notice the sarcasm in his voice. "Beatles apologists are now telling us that Manson is a lone nut. But if he'd been a Lawrence Welk fan, the liberal media would have been all over it, calling it 'square rage.'"

"It doesn't matter whether Manson was formally connected to the Beatles or not," said journalist Andrew Sullivan. "But these killings are clearly Beatles-related. I was frightened by the music of the Beatles before, but now I'm literally nauseated by fear. The time has come to bomb Liverpool. Thank God President Nixon, the greatest orator since Demosthenes, gets it."

"I better not catch anyone playing Beatles music for my infant daughter," said suburban Dad James Lileks.

• • • • •

Thursday, October 24, 2002


Peaceful Blog Watch:

Jesus, can we nukes these people already, clearly the only way to stop this terrorism is to kill all this islam worshiping heathens. i mean look at the guy above me, you think any kind of reason will stop him from supporting the destruction of us christians? No it is self defense we must fight back. Mecca must be destroyed.
It is the only way for our children and their children to be safe.
Plus in the long run it is better for everyone, the people in the middle east will have at least a chance to be able to worship jesus, and therefore get into heaven though the colored ones will have to sit at a different table than the rest of us, just kidding.

Oh, Abdul, we don't want you to dance to our beck and call any more.
We want you and the rest of your death-obsessed knuckledraggers to just die.
Shuffle off this mortal coil.
Stop wasting oxygen.
Become worm food.
Leave the rest of us alone. We want nothing to do with you or your gutter religion. (It became a gutter religion when your types dragged it there).
Go now to serve Allah, but go by yourself, unless you can convince about 5000+ Islamofascists that think as you do to go with you. The rest of the civilized world wants to stay here, thanks but no thanks.
And if you really want to dance, a GE MiniGun spits out a nice fast rhythm. Let's see if you can keep ahead of it...
You are judged by the company you keep.
You live with scum....

In a way it's really too bad because while I suspect the majority of Musims are good people they will not say anything because they are too terrified to do so....because of fear of religious persecution from within...which is why the whole shebang is evil.

Just 1 hour ago BBC TV news reported the arrests in some detail.. but neglected to mention the Islamic connection.
I mean, how patronising can you get - you tell the viewers the guy is called Muhammed but don't bother to refer to it again. When nobody knew who the killer was, the news was happy to speculate that it must be some kind of redneck gun nut, and now we know who it seems to be, nobody wants to talk about why any more.
Tony Blair's given England this good image on the war on terrorism, but the reality is that almost the whole country is making like an ostrich. If only the Islamofascists would blow up the BBC HQ....

As these Muslim atrocities mount, you are going to feel harsher towards the MURDER cult. Why not take the nastification leap now?

It's important to remember that not all Muslims are terrorists. But on the flip side, it's hard to deny that nearly all terrorists are Muslims.

F*ck these dog c*ck sucking pigs in the *ss with a monkey d*ck. Death and destruction on them and on their families. They want death so give it to them in spades. This has got to end. Crap, every time I pick up the paper, turn on the new it is nothing but islam this and islam that. Crap, soon I will be able to speak arabic because of the damn news broadcasts alone. Angry? F*ckin' A I'm angry. Hatefull? Not quite but I'm getting there.

Ugh. We need an Allah-vaccine to cure the Allah-virus....

There is only one thing these retards understand - force. And if force isn't working, it is only because we are not using enough.
They don't care about their own lives....fine. They have relatives, and their holy sites. They want to take our lives, which are precious to us - they should be prepared to lose things which are precious to them. It is not our fault their priorities are so dorked up that a big black rock sticking out of the ground is the most valued item in their society.
At least knowing that this places are on the table as far as being obliterated should keep their craziness in check.

If anything has to be nuked, nuke the house of Saud.

One more thing about the nuking: if they do detonate one in a major city, then forget all I said and reduce the Arabian Peninsula into a smoking crater.
About vaporizing Mecca, which NC thinks is such a bad idea because it will lead to a true "clash of civilizations."
I have a revised strategy that will eliminate this consequence.
Nuke Mecca, Medina, and Qom (the Shi'ite holy city). With a Trifecta we demoralize them rather than energize them.
Of course, we would nuke the Pakis as well, or just remove the cuffs that we've put on the Indians and Israelis.

Off topic, but I can't help it. I see a parallel in Anil and "the sniper". He comes in, takes pot shots and then sits back and basks in the tumult. It seems to me that he enjoys rubbing a dog's fur the wrong way just to get a reaction. Is it the sense of empowerment? Is it ego? Whatever his rationale, you can be sure it is irrational.

Somebody should tell those kids that if there is a J-E-W hiding behind those trees, they are wearing body armor, have a comm link up to the IAF and IDF and have MUCH superior firepower. You kiddies still wanna play 'tag' with them?

These peaceful, tolerant posts have all been posted over at Little Green Footballs since Charles' "last word on the subject."

Comments are open and unmoderated, although obscene or abusive remarks may be deleted. Opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect the views of Little Green Footballs.

I can only assume you don't find these obscene or abusive Charles, since you have been moderating the posts, but didn't delete the above.

Look at this picture. Look at the woman's expression. What do you see? Charles, meek and mild, sees:

Even in this small image you can see the ghoulish delight in the eyes of the woman at left, looking at the simulated organs and body parts flying through the air.


I wonder what the rush is to code the evidence eliminator, I mean, the program to clean out the comments section every 30 days?

- Eric A. Blair

• • • • •

Wednesday, October 23, 2002


The Anti-Rhetoric Non-Manifesto by Mass Distraction:

Manifestos are just rhetorical statements, not questions, or elaborate discussions, or even simple arguments. They offer no space for analysis or reflection - just answers, conclusions, statements of an ideological nature. Slogans. Ironically, the most famous manifesto is the Marxist one. The tone of Raymond's assertions is as rhetorical and vague as 'workers of the world unite' or 'proletarian dictatorship' or 'down with private property'. The assumptions are not explained or justified, but merely put forth in all their propagandist weight. Even more ironically, this sort of non-discourse is equivalent to the fundamentalist proselytizing. 'Jihad to the west' is here replaced by 'Jihad BY the west'. None of the points are even logically or rationally presented as arguments: they're dogmas. Not of a moral kind, not even political - politics is the art of dealing with the complexities of reality - but dogmas in the the religious sense, ie. vague abstract and self-justifying claims that require we all automatically share the conclusions, no matter what is the starting point, or no matter how many contradictions they entail. No shadow of a pro and cons analysis. No trace of anything aiming at putting forth a proposition about a reality to be changed or improved - as manifestos actually do, even in their rhetoric. Even a company 'mission statement' sets forth more practical aims than Raymond does - what's his goal besides yet another roll-call? Do we need something even more ideological and abstract than political leaders' speeches? At least, with them, we know they're also doing more practical things in the background, and the speeches are only the PR-management level. We can actually trust the military and intelligence to think situations out in more complex terms than the 'either with us, or against us' roll-call a president needs to rely on, if he doesn't want to alienate his electorate and the whole nation. And we can only hope the manifesto author has no political ambitions. (continued)

• • • • •

Tuesday, October 22, 2002


Here's an early response from Will Femia of MSNBC's Weblog Central to an email from some LGF comments-clown:

Brian, thanks for your letter. I am not replying to all of these LGF mails (there are hundreds) but since you are the first civil mail I've read in the last hundred or so, I'm giving myself a break and taking time to reply.

I don't actually have a staff, it's just me. I am quite busy, but that's my own fault, so I can't complain.

What's baffling me the most is why so many people don't even want the issue raised. I didn't take LGF off the list. I didn't bow to the "PC lefties." People are berating me for "being on the fence" but I thought my decision was clear?

The only assertion I made was that there were objections to putting LGF on the list, and I did back that up with facts. There really are objections, I didn't make that up.

Anyway, hopefully by tomorrow I'll have gone through all these mails and still retained my sanity (you may have been spared the mean spiritedness, but I certainly have not) and I'll be able to do a follow up post.

Thanks for your reply,


If it wasn't so sad seeing poor Mr. Femia deluged by the 21st century equivelant of trailer park crank crayon-scrawled letters to the editor this and Charles' clueless reply would almost be funny:

Uh ... I'd just like to say that many people who have sent mail to Mr. Femia have also copied it to me, and of the ones I've seen, only a very few are actually what I would call "harsh." I have not seen one that qualifies as "mean-spirited," but maybe they didn't copy those to me, or maybe Mr. Femia has a different standard of mean-spirited.

This is the problem in a nutshell: the same emails and comments that any rational being finds mean, racist and disgusting Charles and his drones think are just fine. He's never answered the question why he doesn't delete evil comments like "Saying your a mainstream muslim is like saying your a moderate Nazi. Its an oxymoron. The whole religion is evil and preverted (sic) from mohammad whom was a pedophile to these murderous beasts. It is a primitve religion of opression and sedition. Besides to be a muslim means to be a slave of thier (sic) deity!!" (shouldn't this end with a "LOL!" - ed) but quickly deletes comments and bans others which he rightly or wrongly percieves to be anti-semetic or critical of the Israeli occupation in Palestine. Double-standard perhaps? Do you wonder why people think you run a anti-Muslum/Arab hate site?
Here's a prediction: after this outburst of hate mails, slander and insults few big media journos will want to touch warblogs with a ten foot pole. It's not worth the hassle. Congrats, morons. You probably discredited yourselves more in a few days than WBW has been able to do all year.

- Eric A. Blair

PS: And good job on running "Peaceful Religion Watch" on the day you should be proving that you're not a hate site. I get it. Ha ha. The idea that Islam is a religion of peace is a lie. All the Muslum's that live in my apartment building and neighborhood that work, go to school, and raise families beside me are actually followers of a religion of hate viz a viz they are hateful people. Yeah right. And Father Coughlin spoke for all Catholics. Freak.

• • • • •

Monday, October 21, 2002


Some days back, when the estimable Atrios was compiling his lexicon of terms describing the wildly illogical and dishonest practices of G. Harlan Reynolds, I volunteered a neologism that while lacking the euphony of "Glennuendo" and "Disinglennuousness" seemed a bit more comprehensive: Harlatanry, defined as G. Harlan's charlatan insistance that he's qualified to dispense his prejudices as something approaching fact. Lamentably, Atrios decided against the term's inclusion. After having the New York Sun reject innumerable requests of mine to undertake an advertisement in its august pages, I had grown accustomed to rejection, so the hurt was minimal.

That doesn't mean that there isn't any Harlatanry in evidence. On the countrary, the Instapundit volcano of intellectual fraud erupts with force today, as Glenn mounts a spirited defense of Charles Johnson and his nifty warblog (credibly called a "hate site" by some). As always, Glenn advances his argument largely by linking, allowing himself the post-facto luxury of denying endorsement of material he "merely" linked to.

I have little desire to engage the Tarantos and Johnsons of the warbloggergarten. After all, they can bill their sites as a comprehensive reckonings of all the naughtiness committed by Arabs and Muslims - a simple reportorial exercise - though those whipping their hobby horses with excess vigor are often doing something other than what they claim. Israel Shahak, a learned and serious man, went to the grave in disrepute, his own friends and colleagues expressing wonder about his anti-Semitism in their obituaries and remembrances. And Taranto and Johnson - neither of whom closely approach Shahak in terms of learning or seriousness - are held up as realists if not heroes.

And that's what Glenn is doing. Note his rush to call the engagement of Johnson a "smear campaign," a campaign in which Anil Dash's effort is cited specifically. Yet if he had actually bothered to read Dash's piece, he would have seen plainly that it concerned itself with what Johnson actually wrote, linking to specifics throughout. A "smear campaign," Glenn, is far more similar to that series of cool, disinterested links you deployed against Scott Ritter and his alleged receipt of Iraqi payola motivating his about-face.

The Harlatanry is most pronounced in this pronouncement: "Johnson is a lefty who's faced reality, which apparently makes him offensive to those who prefer not to." Is this the launch of another PsyWar? Is he serious? Is he saying that anyone not manning an lgf-style warblog is somehow incomplete in their confrontation of reality? The Professor's crippled faculty for logic is awful to behold. What marks would he give to a student peddling such schlock? How badly would an opposing attorney in a court of law decimate The Professor if he dared venture such flawed reasoning?

We were moderately amused when Professor Reynolds exhibited his unfamiliarity with the queer argot by likening those calling Andrew Sullivan the "Blog Queen" to those employing the term "nigger" and took a swipe at Atrios by saying Atrios, in his response to Glenn's accusation via link that Atrios was homophobic, "says that they're worse at Free Republic, which seems to me to be a pretty lame defense." Today Teach tickles us further when he writes that one of his faithful sweathogs "references IndyMedia as a far more plausible example of a hatesite." Now that's a proper defense!

• • • • •


The fans of mass death are busy constructing ever-higher pedestals on which to place Christopher Hitchens, with G. Harlan Reynolds, as expected, registering his customary pithy approval. Reynolds seems to have erred, though, filing his take on Hitchens' latest on the main page of his warblog instead of his PsyWar page, as would have been appropriate.

The piece in question is another yawn-inducer in which Hitchens continues to mine the quarry of ex-leftism to great profit. This is done in strict adherence to the standard techniques: Mark Cooper-style statements about "the left," arguing by locating a few idiots in the crowd, and seizing on the most indefensible pronouncements of the fringe. It's tiresome stuff to read, and must have been tiresome to write, as Hitchens' steam is so reduced by the piece's conclusion that he descends into Chomsky-bashing. It's a shame he didn't bring up Chomsky earlier, when he was talking about "the left's" alleged indifference to the plight of the Kurds. But that wouldn't have advanced his argument any.

In the end it's another unremarkable Hitchens defense of imperialism. An appreciation of Kipling is sure to follow.

Remarkable that an apparently sentient, well-read man can fulminate against "those who thought the Taliban-al Qaeda base in Afghanistan was not worth fighting about" while assuring us that a military campaign against the people of Iraq will supply "the promise of a better life" for a portion of the same. Has he not followed the progress of The War Against Terrorism (TWAT) and the far more modest struggle to provide the Afghans with something better? The former has failed wholesale. In re: the latter, we have secured the services of a fine Mayor for Kabul and provided him a former ice cream man with whom to work. Outside Kabul, the misery seems undiminished, with some affirming they were better off under the Russians. Noted humanist Chuck Krauthammer recently noted America's "position to re-shape norms, alter expectations and create new realities" through an "unapologetic and implacable demonstrations of will," and Hitchens is ready and waiting to see those splendid "new realities" perpetrated against seemingly anybody.

• • • • •

Sunday, October 20, 2002


Little Green Footballs makes it big on MSNBC ... as a hate site:

LittAn interesting question has arisen, however. If reader feedback can put a blog on the “Best of” list, can it also take a blog off the list?

Case in point: Little Green Footballs. No sooner had LGF won a spot on Weblog Central’s Best of Blog list than e-mails of objection began to arrive.

“Are you aware of the fact that LGF (Little Green Footballs) is a blog which conveys a message of intolerance, hatred (and so forth) towards Muslims?”

“I’m quite shocked that you listed LGF in this Best of Blogs: have you looked at the content and the editorial line, and more importantly, at the anti-muslim anti-left anti-prettymucheverythingnotgeorgewbush hate that gets its way on that weblog ? How can a blog be considered worthy of reading when it’s so obviously dedicated to bad mouthing Islam by relentlessly confuse it with the Islamic terrorists’ view of it?”

The objections are based on the fact that LGF has, over time, increased its focus on militant Islam and terrorism and in the process has drawn a constituency of considerable hostility to Islam to its comments section.

Former Best of Blogs blogger Anil Dash is one of LGF’s most vocal detractors and has made many critical posts in his own blog as well as in the LGF comments section.

Though LGF author Charles Johnson has many supporters, Anil Dash, as was pointed out this summer in Wetlog is by no means alone in his criticism. The submissions to the blogspotting mailbag show evidence of both sides. Some celebrate Johnson for highlighting and tracking the threat to the United States by Islamic extremists, others resent him for grouping all of Islam and Islamic culture in with the terrorists who act in Islam’s name.

As a Weblog specimen, LGF is actively maintained, well-presented, heavily trafficked, and a prime example of the ability of blogs to generate discussion and create community. While I do not think that LGF should be ignored or excluded from Best of Blog contention, I do agree that my own entry should have done more to both describe and contextualize it. That said, I’ve amended both my original entry below and the description of LGF in the column on the right.

Is Little Green Footballs too hateful for the Best of Blogs list?

Maybe Charles will go back to playing guitar for Al Jarreau and his brother back to the ballet. Less hassle.

PS: And oh yeah, don't forget to send MSNBC a message to let them know what you think of them linking to that creepy crusadeblog.

- Eric A. Blair

• • • • •


Damon from the WBW comments:

Draft for an Anti-Idiotarian Manifesto (version 6.66):

WHEREAS, the world has turned into an enormous fucking Tom Clancy novel;

WHEREAS, the Left has failed us by not being the Right;

WHEREAS, the Right has failed us by trying to take away our dope and prostitutes;

WHEREAS, even many of the Libertarians, from whom we expected a hasty abandonment of their core values of non-initiation of force and individual rights at the first sign of a real-world ethical dilemma, have refused to recognize that, at this time, enthusiastically marching in lock-step with the state in its pursuit of aggressive military solutions to all problems of collective guilt, is our only practical instrument of self-defense;

WE THEREFORE ASSERT the following convictions as the basis of the anti-idiotarian position:

1. THAT the end is nigh.

WE THEREFORE AFFIRM that both the terrorists and their state sponsors -- verily in so committing their souls to the Abyss, and sundering the peace of Middle Earth -- have made themselves outlaws from the moral community of Man, forsooth to be dealt with as all manner of fell beasts and dragons are, aye, and orcs.

WE FURTHER AFFIRM that the `root cause' of Islamo-fascist terrorism lies in the animating politico-religious ideas of fundamentalist Islam and not in any significant respect elsewhere, a position enormously strengthened by our total immersion in Islamic culture during two hours spent in transit at Dubai Airport on the way to Australia for a Linux convention, and that a central aim of the war against terror must be to displace, discredit, and destroy those animating ideas, which we shall heretofore refer to as ‘thought-crimes’.

WE REJECT, in a rare burst of intellectual clarity, as a self-serving power grab by the least trustworthy elements of our own side, the theory that terrorist depredations can be effectively prevented by further restrictions on the right of free speech, or the right of peaceable assembly, or the right to bear arms in self-defense; and we strenuously oppose police-state measures such as the imposition of national ID cards or airport-level surveillance of public areas;

WE REJECT the theory that `fairness' requires us not to notice that them’s a bunch a dune coons done this.

WE SUPPORT unconditionally whatever the United States and its so-called ‘allies’ claim to be doing about this.

WE SUPPORT, as an alternative greatly preferable to future nuclear blackmail of the West, the present nuclear blackmail BY the West.

WE SUPPORT another declaration of support for something on this line.

WE REJECT such a declaration on this one.

WE DEFINE IDIOTARIANISM as a ridiculous made-up word.

WE REJECT the idiotarianism of the Left -- the moral blindness that refuses to recognize that steel tariffs and Amateur Assbangers IV: Return to High School have made the West a fundamentally better place than any culture in which jihad, 'honor killings', and female genital mutilation are daily practices approved by a stultifying religion.

WE REJECT the idiotarianism of the Right – in our effort mask the extreme right-wing nature of this manifesto.

WE ARE MEMBERS OF A CIVILIZATION, and we hold that civilization to be worth defending by other people. We have not sought war, but we will send others to fight it to the end. We will fight for our civilization in our thoughts, in our words, and in other’s deeds.

WE HAVE AWAKENED. We have seen the face of evil in the acts of the Bin Ladens and Husseins and Arafats of the world; we have seen through the lies and self-delusions of the idiotarians who did so much both to make their evil possible before the fact and to deny and excuse it afterwards. We shall not flinch from our duty to confront that evil in the most laughably self-deluded and ineffective manner possible; to wit, this manifesto.

WE SHALL SHED the moral cowards and the appeasers and the apologists; and we shall fight the barbarians and fanatics, and we shall defeat them. We shall defeat them in war, crushing their dream of dominion; and we shall defeat them in peace, using our wealth and freedoms to seduce their women and children to civilized ways, and ultimately wiping their diseased and virulent culture from the face of the Earth. Furthermore, we shall defeat them in Magic: the Gathering, crushing their dream of seizing the Dark Throne of Zalgar; and we shall defeat them in Dungeons and Dragons, using our totally awesome sketching ability to draw totally realistic pictures of their women as Half-elven sluts in leather to jack off to. And we shall take truckloads of shit for the truly unfortunate phrase "using our wealth … to seduce … children".

THIS WE SWEAR, on the graves of countless patriots and lovers of freedom; and to past deliverers of truly rousing and appropriate calls to arms;


(your signature here)

• • • • •


A new look to National Review's corner, where dunces are sat and where streetwalkers ply their filthy trade:

PLEASE BEAR WITH US... [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
The Corner is having some technical difficulties....we're doing what we can to fix....thanks for your patience....

Though techincal difficulties figure near the bottom of their difficulties rated by severity. The children playing in the corner have been doing so in material breach of common decency since the feature's inception, most notably with Rich Lowry's imbecilic contemplation of "nuking Mecca" and Momma's Boy Jonah Goldberg's recent enthusiasm for book banning and censorship.

I trust Rod Dreher's capitalizing on the down-time by catching up on his readings.

• • • • •

Saturday, October 19, 2002



Now, you have an unprecedented opportunity to witness one man's descent into insanity online. Apparently having begun his 'journey' by dressing up as James Bond and pretending his CD is a gun, computer nerd Eric S. Raymond has been on a slide into insanity ever since.

His descent into insanity is exemplified by a series of posts, so self-evident in their detachment from reality, that they really require no commentary. Over at his site, Raymond has been going through the motions of putting together an Idiotarian Manifesto or some such. He's been trying to get the words right, trying to work out whether the terrorists, who he defines rather broadly, are "feral beasts" or "rabid dogs". This manifesto is the latest in a long line of ridiculous offerings from Raymond, beginning with his series of factually-challenged screeds ranting and raving about the evils of Islam and the hitherto unknown spectre of "Islamofacism".

Start here and read up.

• • • • •

Wednesday, October 16, 2002


"The squares are running it. What we need are hip people."
-- Oscar Brown, Jr.
Oct. 3, 2002 on Democracy Now

Warbloggers are squares, too, aren't they? Take Scott Ganz, for instance--that boy is so square that if he were standing next to Soupy Sales, he'd be cramping his style.

• • • • •

Tuesday, October 15, 2002



Well. It seems that known Chickenhawk and Coward Dr. Weevil has banned me from his blog Stalinist style. (Did we pro-Castro, Stalinist loving peaceniks ever ban anybody yet...?)I can't tell you how hurt I am. Doc Weevil, as you may recall, was the first one to offer the Shropshire Challenge. I want to stress that my earlier post is meant to be taken as an opening position. You are welcome to add your own considerations and additions to any such possible contract. Being that I believe in compromise and negotiation in all things, I'm willing to meet you halfway. Anywho, Mr. Weevil offered a longer rebuttal and I offered some healthy suggestions of my own in his comments section, where I subsequently found out that I was banned. So enjoy.

Hey, let's make it three weeks to get there. (I was planning to go by train, which might take more time and no I won't be bringing any of my blow up dolls...)

Make counter offers fellas. I know you're not into the negotiation thing but that's how the world works--unless you really want and need to blow people up.

Philip Shropshire

PS: How about those Bali bombings...Yet, I was under the impression that bombing Afghanistan had crippled Al Qaeda. Seems like those people were wrong, huh? Now, these id, uh, "people", are telling me that we have to invade Iraq or, what? We won't stop Al Qaeda...hoookayyy. It's not about the oil or anything like that...
Posted by Philip Shropshire at October 15, 2002 12:04 PM

Am I the only person reading this who finds Shropshire's gloating over the Bali bombing disturbing?

Maybe he didn't intend it to be this way, but he comes across as being thrilled that al Qaeda is still a threat on the global stage (as if anyone denied this; it is precisely the fear that Saddam Hussein will equip al Qaeda with WMD that is driving us towards war with Iraq).

This guy considers himself a peace activist?

I guess it is all in how you define peace.

Posted by Iron Fist at October 15, 2002 01:51 PM

Well, it's not just Bali, it's also Yemen and what's happening in Kuwait. But let's recap the argument:

The warbloggers claimed that by bombing Afghanistan that we had dealt a severe blow to Al Qaeda.

People on the other side (myself included) argued that you're not fighting a war against states but against an organization that exists in 60 or more countries. We argued that you did nothing to stop terror by attacking one country--and that if you did pick one country you were probably better off picking either Saudi Arabia or Pakistan. Furthermore, not only would unilateral action not be effective against terror cells (As if you could stop the IRA by bombing Belfast...) but the completely opposite tactic, namely compromise and joint actions, would be needed to win the war on terror. However, to mix uses of force, to initiate joint operations with other countries, and use other incentives and punishments (other than killing the other guy) requires deeply intelligent leadership--which is something that we really don't have.

Some conclusions: You were deadly wrong about Afghanistan and you're probably wrong about Iraq. Not only are you not winning the war against terror, your dumb bombing frell the world attitude is making the world a deadlier place. I might note that none of these actions make me feel safer as an American.
Posted by Philip Shropshire at October 15, 2002 02:42 PM

One other point: while I'm still waiting for you to come up with a counter offer, keep in mind that the $10000 fine has to be covered. That's because if it isn't covered the finee is probably looking at jail time. That's non-negotiable. Even if I just took the $2300, I'd still have to have that $10000 grand in place...

Where are your counter offers? No wonder you guys have to kill people who disagree with you. You lack the ability to find creative solutions...Pathetic. I will use the word chickenhawk every opportunity that I can...

Posted by Philip Shropshire at October 15, 2002 02:48 PM

You stay snug and safe in Pittsburgh, as you obviously have every intention of doing anyway, admit that you are no more courageous than the average 'warblogger', delete the offensive T-shirt depicted on your latest post on WarbloggerWatch, stop using the terms 'chickenhawk' and 'chickenblogger', and apologize for ever using them in the past. In return, I will keep my opinion of your moral character and intelligence to myself, and encourage other 'warbloggers' to do the same. In short, stop acting like an asshole and you can gradually get your reputation back, though it will take a while.

Alternatively, you may keep on insulting your betters and lying about your own willingness to risk your life for . . . what exactly? Not your country, or your beliefs, or any higher cause, but for a big pot of other people's money. (More money than some warbloggers have made so far this year, by the way.) Do you realize just how greedy, mercenary, and stereotypically Republican that makes you look?

Of course, the $10,000 fine is a red herring. It might apply if you went to Baghdad as a human shield, but you insist that you would only go as a writer. Has the U.S. government ever fined or jailed a journalist for going to Iraq? I doubt it.

Of course, we guys don't kill people who disagree with us, only people who try to kill us. So Shropshire is safe, but Saddam is not. Seems (relatively) fair to me.

Posted by Dr. Weevil at October 15, 2002 03:21 PM

What's that chickenhawk? Gawd you guys make me sick. It's obvious that I'm serious. You send the check and I will go. I'll make another concession being that you're a stereotypical ugly American and think that compromise is for weaklings: If I'm not fined, then let's return that $10000. Here's another offer coward: Of that $13000 remaining, I'll split it with a Warblogger and we'll go someplace dangerous and yes I do think that Israel and the surrounding territories are fairly dangerous places but remember I'm open minded. Please suggest other dangerous places that we can visit. I believe in compromise, negotiation, meeting the other guy halfway...Try it some time:


Philip Shropshire

PS: By the way, my belief in the hypocrisy, stupidity and yes the cowardice of the warblocracy is deepened by your every hollow shrilly exchange...One other point: I explained my thing on the money very carefully. Ted Rall got 8 grand. I'd like some money. There's a very good chance I won't be coming back. You don't mind if I get a paycheck do ya'? I thought you guys were capitalists, ready to invade Saudi Arabia for some oil? Gawd what cowardly pathetic hypocrites, on every frellin' level...

Posted by Philip Shropshire at October 15, 2002 04:08 PM

Philip Shropshire: Fuck you, you greedy lying coward. You are now banned from this site. Go write your filth on your own site.Posted by Dr. Weevil at October 15, 2002

• • • • •

Monday, October 14, 2002


GROTH: Was it dangerous?

RALL: It has its dangers. It's not really so much that as it is -- well, first of all, the diarrhea is just out of this world. It just goes on and on. The first time you go to Central Asia, you'll have it for two to three weeks, and you're completely liquid the entire time. You're just deadly sick. I lost about 40 pounds and I weigh about 200. I was pretty messed up. And also, the climate's extreme. One bus ride I took, I was in shorts and a T-shirt because it was 120 degrees, and that night I was freezing my ass off above the snow line in the mountains. It's very uncomfortable. And because the distances are so vast, you might routinely find yourself going four or five days without a bath because you're stuck on a bus. I guess the biggest hassle of traveling out there is documentation, because it's the former Soviet Union and there are checkpoints all throughout. You're constantly being pulled over and hassled by the police, who are always trying to shake you down for bribes. The first time I went, this just enraged me. I couldn't believe the systemic corruption.

Well, when Ted puts it that way—with the extreme diarrhea and the 120 degree days and the freezing your ass off nights and the systemic corruption—who wouldn’t want to go to no doubt equally Hellish and bowel challenging Iraq?

I have to accept the Shropshire Challenge (with some conditions.) I mean, Frell, Grady already has accepted like 14 times. I figure I can at least accept once. There’s just a few minor conditional details: Instead of $2000, I want enough money to risk my life, at least as much money as my crazed hero Ted Rall got (8 Grand) plus $5000 because I’ll be needin’ bribes bribes bribes, and enough to cover the $10000 (1) fine that Americans face for going to Iraq. So, if you’ve got $23000 grand I’ll be taking that trip to Iraq! (Yeah I know sucks to be poor…)(I’m not rich enough to go anywhere for just $2000 for more than a month or so. I won’t have anything left to come back to. Got no trust funds around here.)This also answers another warblogger query: It takes a certain amount of wealth to be a rebel. The upper middle class people who threw their planes into buildings didn’t think like Americans. True, they had wealth and privilege but they didn’t think of themselves as rich because, unlike Americans—the bestest greatest keenest group of folks in the world who wouldn’t dream of killing 1 or 2 million peasants in Guatemala or East Timor—they probably thought I’m not rich unless my people are rich. I know, ker razyyyyy right Misha…

Keep in mind: The full amount has to be collected before I even deign to leave the Greater Pittsburgh area. I want half up front. The other half, including the $10000, should stay in the hands of a neutral third party, or a side or person that both side respects. I suggest the American Prospect. For that, I promise to spend a month in a war zone. Give me six weeks to get there (The only exception is if I’m physically not allowed to enter the country, then I should be given several (three) weeks to go to Dangerous Place option two or three. I choose my own transportation. If I don’t get to Iraq in time for the war, or if I’m not allowed in what may be the radioactive wasteland formerly known as Iraq then I’ll go to two other equally dangerous places: Israel, or the surrounding territories. And my third option is Venezuela. I’m game and I’m ready.

But I have to be honest, Iraq is probably the last place I’d like to be. I think that if Iraq is attacked then Saddam will unleash all the bad stuff that he does have. (I'll probably have to get a smallpox shot at the very least before I go.) Afterall, there would be nothing holding him back except Saddam's good conscience. Now, here's where it gets kind of interesting and it has to do with a point that Noam Chomsky made in a recent interview. Chomsky said that, essentially, Israel had once threatened the oil reserves by force which might yet be another reason the United States is such a strong supporter of Israel. Let's assume for a moment that our country is run by oilman and let us assume that maybe they've concluded that the biggest threat to their Crack-like oil supply is not the Arab countries, but a country that has over 400 nuclear weapons. Now, Sharon has said that he'll retaliate if Saddam attacks Israel with germ warfare. I'm making the assumption that Sharon means nuclear weapons. But what if the US doesn't let him? What if they decide to attack Israel preemptively in order to protect the oil supply? This is a pretty evil administration. The administration would simply have to choose what's more important: the sacred right of Israeli revenge or the pristine health of the oil fields and all the concomitant Bush/Cheney family oil deals tied to them past present and future. I think a sane presidential administration, not in the pocket of the oil industry or led by a guy who can pronounce words, would never lead us to such a point where such a horrific call would have to be made. Personally, I think this administration will always choose the pristine health of the oil fields over Israel.

It's also why I don't think attacking Iraq is good for Israel, unleashed bioplagues notwithstanding.

By the way, I will go as a writer, period. I'd rather not go, but if Ted Rall can go unarmed then maybe I can be courageous like him, at least once. I'd like to talk to and interview as many people as possible. I'll try to blog from the scene. Just like my hero, Noam Chomsky, I'm not under the illusion that Saddam is a nice guy. I just don't think that force creates longterm peace or stability as the quagmire known as Afghanistan would attest to, not to mention that Al Qaeda seems to be well and active. Wasn't Osama Bin Laden the primary threat? Oh, that's changed. I get it. It'll be France next week. And yes I'm open to negotiation. Bottom line: Collect $23000 grand. Write me a check for $11,500. I'll be in Iraq or options two and three within six weeks (If I'm not there, then you get your money back, unless I'm not allowed to enter the country or if there is no country, as I explained earlier.) Why, that's only $100 per venomous warblogger apiece and there's at least 500 of you. Send a commie pinko to Iraq. Come on. You warbloggin' cowards.

(1) This is a story about one guy who has already gone. Here's what I found in the story and here is the link: Neither that argument, nor the $10,000 fines imposed on some activists who've gone to Iraq in recent years without U.S. government permission, sway Mr. Mauger. Well, it sways me. I'm not rich.

• • • • •


(Art by the great great Bill Sienkiewicz)

I actually did a feature story about these cards back during the dark days when I worked for Scripps Howard. There are 35 cards that feature the worst assortment of dictators that we've supported. Whenever the usual heckler suspects show up at Warblogger Watch and talk about how wonderful our occupation will be for the Afghan /Iraqi people I just roll my eyes in disbelief at the screen. I mean, you support bloodthirsty dictators once or twice, then maybe it's not a pattern. You support bloodthirsty dictators 35 (not counting our recent democratic activity in Venezuela) times then, hey, that's a pattern. And an evil pattern at that. Anyway, check them all out. Here's what's on the back of this card.

President of Chile
On July 2, 1986, 18 year old Carmen Gloria Quintana was walking through a Santiago slum when she and photographer Rodrigo Rojas were confronted by government security forces. According to eyewitnesses, the two were set ablaze by soldiers and beaten while they burned. Their bodies were then wrapped in blankets and dumped in a ditch miles away. Witnesses who spoke out about what they saw were beaten and arrested. Such events are not unusual since "Captain General" Augusto Pinochet seized power from democratically elected President Salvador Allende in 1973, and buried Chile's 150 year old democracy. "Democracy is the breeding ground of communism," says Pinochet.The bloody coup, in which Allende was assassinated, was carefully managed by the CIA and ITT, according to the Church Committee report. Tens of thousands of Chileans have been tortured, killed, and exiled since then, according to Amnesty Intemational. A U.S. congressional delegation was told by inmates at San Miguel Prison that they had been tortured by "the application of electric shock, simultaneous blows to the ears, cigarette burns, and simulated executions by firing squads." Despite Chile's bad human rights record, the U.S. government continued to support Pinochet with international loans. Even the state-sponsored car-bomb assassination of Chile's former Ambassador to the U.S., Orlando Letelier, did not convince the U.S. to break with Pinochet. Chileans called for his removal in a 1988 election, but he clung to the presidency until 1990, and remains the commander of Chile's army.

(Note: these cards ended in 1990 so you don't learn about the very just effort to put Pinochet on trial over the last several years...)

• • • • •


There's a lot of good stuff in this Z Magazine interview with Noam Chomsky. One of the things that his foamin' at the mouth critics often miss, aside from the complexity of his arguments, is that he's very funny.

Here's a highlight:

8. How will the Iraqi people react to a U.S. attack on Iraq? What are the likely humanitarian consequences of a U.S. war?

No one has a clue. Not Donald Rumsfeld, not me, no one. One can imagine a delightful scenario: a few bombs fall, the Republican Guards rebel and overthrow Saddam, crowds cheer as US soldiers march in while the band plays "God Bless America," the people of the region hail the liberator who proceeds to turn Iraq into an image of American democracy and a modernizing center for the entire region -- and one that produces just enough oil to keep the price within the range that the US prefers, breaking the OPEC stranglehold. And Santa Claus smiles benignly from his sleigh. One can easily imagine rather more grim outcomes. That's a normal concomitant of the decision to resort to massive violence, and one of the many reasons why those who advocate that course have a very heavy burden of proof to bear. Needless to say, neither Rumsfeld nor Cheney nor any of the intellectuals urging war against Iraq have remotely begun to meet this burden.

Noam Chomsky: He'll be appearing at Chuckles all this week.

• • • • •

Wednesday, October 09, 2002


Ah, the wonders of technology. Now they can go back to their law classes, their Australian newsrooms, back to coding for pay, for technology has replaced the warbloggers, thanks to the instant warblog generator:

Clearly, Warblogger Watch is cynical
by R. Robot

Beyond Germany, it's difficult to identify any country where anti-Americanism is on the upswing.

Politics are allowed in politics, but there are limits, and there is a pale, and Warblogger Watch has managed to impose those limits, and shroud in a smokescreen beyond that pale.

The pathological liberals shockingly believe that Condie Rice is a more dangerous sadist than the Libyans. A leader not trying to take the war to Bin Laden would be shockingly putrescent in the extreme.

The proof that our mission is unique and tough is that it's so risky.

Warblogger Watch has changed his tune again. "Don't hurt me," he says. Didn't anyone hear Condoleeza Rice's pledge to build the opportunity? When Henry Kissinger tries to protect us from stark brown men, bitter Warblogger Watch and his fellow multiculturalists cry out, "racial profiling!" Are there limits to this appeasement?

- Eric A. Blair

• • • • •


Despite the explosion of a sizable bombshell overhead - the revelation that a terrorist organization successfully conducted espionage "10 times worse than Watergate" against Bush and Blair - Andrew Sullivan declines to comment. Instead he launches a renewed penis war.

• • • • •

Saturday, October 05, 2002


G. Harlan Reynolds's enthusiasm for wargaming appears undiminished by recent allegations. Professor Reynolds links to an earlier piece he co-authored for the loons at NRO, which notes that to "anyone who knows it, geek culture is full of military aspects," and that "[g]eeks, who know that they can program their VCR, also believe themselves capable of cleaning a gun safely." We know of the ridiculous veneration of the machinery of death by many geeks, as well as their overestimation of their military competence. If this is a demonstration of the mastery acquired by gameplay, our predicament is indeed dire.

• • • • •


The tension in my facial muscles eased and the hyperventilation occasioned by prolonged and violent laughter now under control, I can respond to what is surely the greatest bit of online comedy since Andre Sullivan's personal ad.

It took me some days to find it. Ordinarily, you see, I avoid the moron-rookery known as the WBW Comments section, populated largely by morons who feel compelled to attack whatever is posted - often just minutes after posting. Reading their efforts is hard slogging, with each of the nitwits fancying themselves an incubus haunting the site, though coming across as a turd that refuses to flush. But several kindly readers sent notes saying I had been slandered in a most inexcusable way by an eminently forgettable commentator.

Irrationally extreme umbrage was taken at my acceptance of the so-called Shropshire Challenge - with the proviso that Jim J. Lileks, the right-of-center square, accompany me to Iraq to witness firsthand just how nifty a "regime change" can be. An occupant drone of the hive mind apparently believed the queen bee above the invitation, saying that he would stand in proxy ("I promise you that we will meet in the streets of Baghdad, only you won't like our meeting"). This alleged gentleman went so far as to apply for reenlistment with the Army, so he notes on his website.

I can imagine the scenes preceding his post:

After reading my post of 28 September, eminently forgettable commentator is seized with a jingoistic mania. "Honey, get me the clippers. There's something I gotta take care of..." A number-one crop self-inflicted, eminently forgettable commentator gets the old fatigues out of storage, though is unable to fasten the upper buttons on the trousers. He sits his oversized posterior down before the computer - perspiring freely after having exerted himself by shining his boots - to give voice to one of the most intemperate and inexplicable rants ever committed to a computer screen.

"So I'm not afraid to die," our fearless and eminently forgettable commentator assures us, saying he would "be happy to give whatever remains of my life to ensure that my sons have the same opportunities that I've had." The "opportunity" the man has seized on here is the familiar one of making a complete ass of himself.

Luckily in our age, honorable governments are snubbing fourth-raters in their quests to appropriate various toys to satisfy their vanity, though our less-than-honorable government may actually allow such idiocy in the eminently forgettable commentator's case. We can only hope he doesn't meet the sad end he seems to threaten me with, not because it would constitute a loss to reasoned discourse - surely the effect would be quite the opposite - but because it would spare the widow having to explain to the kids just what happened to daddy: "You see, your father was an amazingly insecure man, identifying completely with massive bureaucracies and their unelected functionaries. Every slight issued at 'Kumbaya HQ' was taken with the same outrage as if someone had perpetrated a brilliant new yo-mamma joke at his expense, or had laughed at his sub-average appendage in the YMCA locker room. Oh, yes, he was very insecure. Those same insecurities that drove him to Fisk 'to the molecular level' drove him to Iraq, where he was exploded to the molecular level."

"I have just filed an additional request for re-enlistment with the U.S. Army, hoping for a positive reply this time. I'll keep you updated," our little buddy notes. We, convinced that something so ridiculous could only have been offered as comedy, have just filed an additional nomination of the genius under consideration with The International Academy of Digital Arts and Sciences, hoping to score him a Webby. We'll keep you updated.

• • • • •

Wednesday, October 02, 2002


Uncle oSAMa Says:
I Want YOU To Invade Iraq

"Go ahead. Send me a new generation of recruits. Your bombs will fuel their hatred of America and their desire for revenge. Americans won't be safe anywhere. Please, attack Iraq. Distract yourself from fighting Al Qaeda. Divide the international community. Go ahead. Destabilize the region. Maybe Pakistan will fall -- we want its nuclear weapons. Give Saddam a reason to strike first. He might draw Israel into a fight. Perfect! So please -- invade Iraq. Make my day."

Well, it looks like the US Congress has heeded Uncle oSAMa's call . . . For historical purposes, maybe we should discern the legal precedent for Bush's "pre-emptive" invasion of Iraq. Let's begin with the opinion of Francis A. Boyle, professor of Law at the University of Illinois: "Well, the San Francisco Chronicle interviewed me on that and asked what is the precedent for this? I said that the precedent again goes back to the Nuremberg Judgment of 1946 when the lawyers for the Nazi defendants argued that we, the Nazi government had a right to go to war in self-defense as we saw it, and no one could tell us any differently. Of course that preposterous argument was rejected by Nuremberg. It is very distressing to see some of the highest level of officials of our country making legal arguments that were rejected by the Nuremberg Tribunal."

Lawyers? Scholars? Killbloggers? Care to find another legal precedent?

• • • • •

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