Saturday, May 06, 2006

Bullshit is as Bullshit Does

Digby and Drum and Rozen all call bullshit on the Turf War meme on Goss' beheading, Digby in particular believing that the media's broke out their kneepads for Tony Snow. Maybe.

More likely that's a component. Whether it's turf war of surfed whores or some as yet undiscovered ickiness that brought down Goss, the eagerly offered Snow jobs by the media are more than the honeymoon night favors of a less than virginal press: Did anyone think that Colbert's evisceration of the media was going to make the media more disposed to do their job?

Paybacks are hell, Grasshopper.

Friday, May 05, 2006


Rosie Thomas

Mouse on Mars

Rogue Wave


Sam Prekop

An interview with Philip Roth on his new novel *Everyman*

and go out and read:

Now. Really.

Hiding Behind Whores

I'm just guessing here, but there's something too tidy about the early betting line that Porter Goss has resigned because of his involvement, directly or tangentially, in Whoregate.

What if important senior lifetime officers of the CIA, ones who work for the good of the country, not the good of The Decider!, who are outraged over the decline of an institution that (whatever I think of it) they consider a great and independent protector of America, who've witnessed the alienation of career officers, the corruption of mission, the distortion of intelligence to fit political ends, the abyss of morale, and smelled the stank coming off Goss via Whoregate and chose now to threaten their mutiny? Quit him now, they may have said, or the stank of Whoregate will be perfume beside the stank of what they have over Goss' gross mismanagement of the CIA.

Delicious though the irony would be that a career Conservative uber-whore is brought down by whoring, the greater irony would be that he would hide the ultimate causes of his demise behind his whoring. The White House will try to play this as business as usual - just a resignation, nothing here, move on - and count on their whores in the media to perpetuate that storyline, but if that story doesn't play they'll happily sell Goss out as a slobbering old horndog. Conservative morals, that.

Thursday, May 04, 2006

Thursday is Aarghday!

Richard Cohen in (today's) once great Wankerstan Post:

Colbert just did it, and he will not suffer any consequence at all. He knew that going in. He also knew that Bush would have to sit there and pretend to laugh at Colbert's lame and insulting jokes. Bush himself plays off his reputation as a dunce and his penchant for mangling English. Self-mockery can be funny. Mockery that is insulting is not. The sort of stuff that would get you punched in a bar can be said on a dais with impunity. This is why Colbert was more than rude. He was a bully.

The Editors at Poor Man deal admirably (and with appropriate rudeness - fair warning!) with the issue of rudeness. And Richard Cohen can take his self-perception as a sensible Liberal and go floss himself. But just let me just add a couple of thoughts about being a bully. A bully holds all laws that govern people in contempt and all people who follow those laws as beneath comtempt. The idea that Colbert "violated" decorum by "insulting" a man who prides himself as being above any and all laws - domestic or international - is exactly the irony that Colbert devastatingly illuminated. Just to put this straight: a cable television comedian who calls out a bully, a bully, mind you, determined to deliver unto us yet another war of his choosing, and calls out the bully's lackeys too, is called a bully by one of the lackeys. Ouchee! (Oh, and that Colbert was a bully because he knew that The Decider! couldn't order Colbert's torture because of the Law, that seals Colbert's damning as a bully. And how does Colbert - and Cohen - know that The Decider! hasn't order Colbert's torture? Yet?)

Ba'al, while I admire Neil Young, and like what I've heard of the new album, but Dammit, have an effingly kickass protest song:

Curriculum Vitae

by Anthony Hecht

As though it were reluctant to be day,
.......Morning deploys a scale
.......Of rarities in gray,
And winter settles down in its chain-mail,

Victorious over legions of gold and red.
......The smokey souls of stones,
......Blunt pencillings of lead,
Pare down the world to glintless monotones

Of graveyard weather, vapors of a fen
.......We reckon through our pores.
.......Save for the garbage men,
Our children are the first ones out of doors.

Book-bagged and padded out, at mouth and nose
.......They manufacture ghosts,
.......George Washington's and Poe's,
Banquo's, the Union and Confederate hosts',

And are themselves the ghosts, file cabinet gray,
.......Of some departed us,
.......Signing our lives away
On ferned and parslied windows of a bus.

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Not Nasty Enough (or Americans Don't Deserve Us)

Lots of folks (especially Greenwald and Orcinus and Billmon) have already viciously deconstructed yesterday's WSJ op-ed by Shelby Steele. The jist of the op-ed is that it's the darn wussiness leached into the American character by Liberal-generated, Liberal-propagated guilt over past sins of racism and colonialism that keeps Americans from approving of all-out warfare to vanquish America's enemies once and for all.

Rather than reiterate how utterly illogical, ahistorical, and mendaciously dishonest and deliberately backassward Steele's op-ed is, or to consider the ramifications of his argument (on the frightening image of brigades of Yellow Elephants salivating at the daydream of a good-old asskicking of not-whites), I urge you to read the above commenters.

What I do want to mention is that we have reached a crucial moment, one I didn't expect just yet: whenever tyrants, megalomaniacs, conquerors fail - and they always fail: miserably, bloodily, sloppily, spitefully - they blame their followers. The people were not brave enough, not hardy enough, not strong enough, not faithful enough. The people lacked the will to match the conqueror's vision. The conqueror would have succeeded gloriously but for spinelessness of the people, those contemptible worms. The people do not deserve to serve the conqueror.

I'm always sadly amused when reminded that for all the hatred the Power Right has against us Liberals and Progressives, it's nothing as virulent as the contempt they have for those they've fooled and ruled. As their dreams of lasting power pop, the loathing towards those fools they fed with gaybaiting and the war on Christmas and The Definer! in a codpiece on an aircraft carrier will be gruesomely toxic. It's started.

Bruce Arena announced the 23 man USMNT squad for WC06 next month in Germany. DCU's Ben Olsen was indeed included, and considering that he plays the same position as team captain and always broken Claudio Reyna, should get some playing time.

No surprises with the GK (Keller, Hahnemann, Howard).

I suppose I understand Eddie Pope's selection on D (Bocanegra, Cherundolo, Conrad, Gibbs, Hejduk, Lewis, Onyewu, Pope), though anyone who watched him should know he's cooked; perhaps he's included for the experience he can provide from the bench. Jimmy Conrad? He sucks. For the life of me, the best American defender on Conrad's Kansas City team is Jose Burciaga.

No surprises in MF either (Beasley, Convey, Dempsey, Donovan, Mastroeni, O'Brien, Olsen, Reyna), although a case can be made that the only USMNT player more broken more often than Reyna is John O'Brien, so to include both is to logically double the risk of breaking.

F (Ching, Johnson, McBride, Wolff) is USMNT's weakness. Ching over Twellman isn't as shocking as it first might appear - Ching is big, tall, good in the air, and it'll be set pieces and crosses that USMNT will rely on for scoring. Johnson is a punk. Wolff isn't a punk, but his first touch sucks.

Players report May 10, then three international friendlies for warm-up (soft friendlies: Morocco, Venezuela, Latvia), then Czech Republic in Gelsenkirchen June 12.

Monday, May 01, 2006

Revisiting the Obvious

The Boston Globe reported yesterday that The Decider!
has quietly claimed the authority to disobey more than 750 laws enacted since he took office, asserting that he has the power to set aside any statute passed by Congress when it conflicts with his interpretation of the Constitution.
Every once in a while it's valuable to restate the obvious, and this is one:

The Decider!, and the oligarchal powers behind The Decider!, are not avidly acquiring power and authority to make America safer, they are avidly acquiring power and authority to make their power safer, power they feel is theirs by divine right, power that was stolen by the masses in the form of minimum wages and workplace health standards and environmental rules and all the other advances hard won by progressives and Liberals. The oligarchs, hankering for pre-Great Society, pre-New Deal, glorious days of robber baroncy, understand that consolidation of power in the person of a monarch offers the best and safest route to those ends. It is not an accident that the ur-objective of The Decider! Administration is the obsessive pursuit of expanded executive power.

The rich, the powerful, never feel rich or powerful enough. It's all zero-sum. Minimum wage is a personal affront to their morality. Workers demanding compensation when injured on the job is a direct challenge to their sense of regality. Any law that hampers the maximalization of profits or the fullest exertions of authority are by essense laws that need amending or, as demonstrated by The Decider!, brazen disobeying. Beyond legality, there is a philosophical issue at stake: Do we want to live in a country where the most powerful literally, legally, are without constraint?

Because when the powerful negotiate their contracts with us littles, that's the end game they're playing for. If The Decider! gets away with abolishing his obligations to uphold and obey 750 laws, do you think the oligarchs will say, Enough, we're satisfied? Do you think that once the foundations of the laws have been eroded to their satisfaction they won't use that erosion to undermine your franchise? To negate your rights as a worker, won over the past 75 years?

It's important to remember that the greatest threat to the oligarch's power is you. You. Not al-Q, not a nuclear Iran, not a bustling China or reinvigorated Russia, you. The Decider! is not waiving his sceptre and repudiating the Constitution because of a terrorist living in a cave in Pakistan, he's repudiating the Constitution because they want more power over you. You.

First thing: the Ronnie O'Brien Goal Celebration Dance, considering his history w/DCU, the animosity between him and the supporters' clubs, was absolutely hilarious. While some in the crowd were angered, they're humorless - it was funny in all senses of that word.

DCU were the better team for the first ten and last 25 minutes. The FCD goalie made three brilliant saves, and yes, Gros was offside - if Boswell's header had gone in it would have counted, but since Gros was in a passive offside position when Boswell took the header he was correctly ruled to be offside when he got the rebound.

It's a shame that FCD is not in the same conference as DCU (and play each other four times a year instead of just two), because MLS needs bitter rivalries, and these two teams just don't not like each other, they actively dislike each other. Which makes for good soccer.

Good to see Benny score - and today's papers say he will be named to USMNT for Germany. Good for Benny, bad for DCU - if he misses 10 games, and he's the key engine, brain, and heart of team like I think he is, I'll be happy if DCU can take 16-18 out of the possible 30 points. Yes, that's greedy.