The Plot Turns To Concrete

Barry’s infomercial comes on Wednesday.  GDP data for the third quarter comes out on Thursday. The official declaration of recession will dominate papers just before the last big push.  (Papers, it seems, which are almost unified in their conclusion on the readiness of Tailbunny: zero… point… zero.  But that’s the media elite for you.)

I’ve been wavering the last few weeks. Joy? Dread? Mind-numbing fear?  But the bottom line is this: events as they fall favor Barry.  And Geezer has nothing left to fling at him.  Rezko, Ayers, clinging to guns and religion. Three strikeouts.  Joe the Plumber is the new POW POW POW. (Update: Geezer refered to Plugz as “Joe the Biden” on Meet the Press. Lovely.) Even Rev. Wright might not work.  See what happened in Michigan — 527s tried to tie Obama to NAH NAH NAH and Kwame Kilpatrick.  Result: impending blowout for Black Eagle. The only new club he’s swung was given to him by Plugz (silly Biden: tests are for kids — gasbag), and even that seems to be falling flat. (Maybe it reasonates this week. We’ll see.)

And Meet the Press today? Brokaw, oddly enough, unleashed some moderate amount of whuppin’ — apart from the sucking-up part. Basically called him out on the whole socialist thing. Made him look like a fool on Palin; Geezer said that “she is a role model.” And McCain’s listing of all five secretaries of state — minus one who he could not remember? Oy.

Look: if there was to be an airstrike against Iran — the October Surprise some dirty liberals had basically counted on — it would have happened by now. The al-Qaeda tape (in the form of a blog post) is out, and it doesn’t matter. A quarter of the votes have already been cast, reportedly coming in big for the Inadquate Black Male. (Speaking of which: PUMAs are largely a non-factor.)

Barring electoral shenanigans: if there is to be an anti-Hope surprise, it has to be cataclysmic. Otherwise? Well… Let’s us say that it is NOT OVER. But, we can see over from our house.


But has Osama released his coveted endorsement tape yet?

We’ve got a particularly close governor’s race here in WA as well as a tidal wave of propositions and initiatives, and I need guidance from our terrahist pals.

Just kidding; I already screamed “gawdamm America” and mailed in my anti-American, socialist ballot. The Mr. and I are officially communist Muslims now.

We’re invading Cambodia! Oh, I mean Syria! Really! Its never too late to start a war.

What about the Bunny-friendly personnel board diktat on Troopergate? If they rule in her favor, she makes it an issue. Should they go all mavericky on her, fail. Either way, that’s a news cycle in Black Eagle’s favor.

I have a sneaking suspicion that the choppers were playing “Ride of the Valkyries” over loudspeakers during that incursion into Cambo…er Syria.

ManchuCandidate: Well, shit. This was kind of ham-handed, wasn’t it? No warning, not even an attempt at diplomacy. “Shoot first and ask questions later” v. “Central front on War on Terra.” Ladies and gentlemen: is this the last throw of the dice?

I thought it was a joke! Xist…even if it is shown to be a ham-handed October surprise, Barry has to face the Furren Policy question.

And the Steelers are losing late in the fourth to the friggin Giants.Double fuck.

@Promnight: How far into Syria did we bomb them by accident?
BTW, check out “Hey Sarah Palin”:

@Dodgerblue: We landed troops from assault helicopters, no mistake.

Dodgerblue: Breach of border (per Syria’s not-at-all-controlled-by-government-minders-no-never-ever state news agency, relayed by CNN) = five miles. At top speed, it takes a little under two minutes to go five miles in an Apache. So: straight in, straight out would take no more that four to five minutes. (Thanks, Wikipedia! Unless you’re wrong again.)

Thus: unless the GPS system was on a bender after breaking up with that cute little Blackberry at the club last night: no accident.

@Dodgerblue: From CNN (where I finally dug it out from all the Jennifer Hudson coverage):
Syria’s state news agency SANA said four U.S. helicopters crossed the border and struck a farm about 8 kilometers (5 miles) inside Syria before returning to Iraqi airspace.
The raid occurred about 4:45 p.m. (1345 GMT). The helicopters hit a civilian building under construction on the farm, killing killing three men, the wife of a guard and four children, SANA said.

nabisco: Here’s a possible answer to the foreign policy question:

My fellow Americans: we’ve been in Iraq for more than five years — and in Afghanistan more than seven. Iraq is better now than it was two years ago, but that’s like saying that Detroit Saturday Night Live the weather in Barrow, Alaska is 15% less crappy than it was two years ago. Meanwhile, the Taliban are making a comeback. And, oh, by the way, where the fuck is Osama bin Laden?

Barry’s got better speechwriters than I do. But that’s not the question. The question is: will U.S. Americans take the Geezer’s bait?

@chicago bureau: Nah, this isn’t hamhanded, of course, the lack of diplomacy was intentional, do something small enough to ignite a mini-diplomatic kerfuffle, then use the kerfuffle to tell the American people that McCain would be the one to do stuff like this, we don’t need permission to go after terrorists, dammit, thats what someone like that milquetoast socialist Obama would do, ask permission. They got their fingers crossed right now, praying that Obama will condemn the violation of sovereignty and escalation, so they can hammer him.

Its really kinda subtle, far more so than doing what they wish they could do, bomb Tehran. In the end a sign of weakness, they could not convince the military brass to do what they really really really want to do, attack Iran. Last ditch, faint, weak October surprise.

The Rove doctrine depends on a confusing cloud of vague threat and uncertainty, this is just one more little puff of smoke.

Now the decision to have the justice department enter into the Ohio voter registration case, thats ham-handed, and obviously a set up to give credence to an election dispute.

And if they can gin up any kind of a colorable reason to contest the election, if we have another Bush v. Gore, then there really will be violence, that would be enough to actually make insurrection a possibility, the pigfuckers would descend on DC, with their arms. I am serious, the country was relatively sane and happy, much less tension, in 2000, if there were another contested election, there would absolutely be blood in the streets.

That might be their last ditch hope. Thats why it has to be a landslide, or nearly so, to neutralize that possibility.

@Mistress Cynica: all the Jennifer Hudson coverage

Oddly, the obsession with celebrity within the 24-hour media might help bury this story. (It is an undeniably sad story, of course. Wouldn’t wish what happened to Jennifer Hudson upon my worst enemy.)

Meanwhile: the GDP number, like I said, is coming out on Thursday. That will trump whatever steam this story has, unless Osama comes out of his hidey-hole to drop some lines on the American electorate on, say, Friday.

Promnight: I seriously think that the attack-Iran thing would have done more harm than good, politically. Barry sez: “wait — we are in two wars right now, both on a knife’s edge, and with our military pushed to the breaking point. You want to start a third war?” Contrary to form, the public might actually get that.

@chicago bureau: Can you imagine what the economic numbers would be if they hadn’t completely jiggered and corrupted the indicators? Inflation should be 3 points higher than it is, and it should have been for the last 8 years, which would have put us in a mild recession the entire time. And don’t get me started on the unemployment figures.

Whoever is behind “hedonic adjustments” in the inflation measurement should spend the afterlive licking Satan’s ass clean after he eats Burritos. Fish burritos.

@chicago bureau: Now there you go again, using sane and reality based analysis to try to predict what Cheney and the neocons think is a good idea. Just 3 or 4 months ago their were neocon trial balloons floating left and right, suggesting that if McCain were elected, Bush would refrain from attacking Iran, but if Obama were elected, he would have to do it between the election and the inauguration, because he would not be able to trust Obama as his successor to do whats necessary. It was almost a hostage-threat, “elect McCain or we nuke this Iran.”

Totally, batshit insane, of course, yet the deep thinkers of conservatism over at National Review were wallowing in this meme over the summer.

@chicago bureau:

The brass knew, especially the Navy who has historically been a little more thoughtful then the Army and especially the fundie gung ho Air Force. That is why they leaked the possibility of an Iran attack to selected newsies to preempt the preempters.

Ya know, we tend to look at the economic implosion, regretfully, as it is a disaster, as nevertheless aiding Obama, and its true, it is. But what we maybe aren’t fully appreciating is that the economic collapse is perhaps what has tied their hands and made it impossible for then to start some bold new war this fall.

Sweet Zombie Jeebus.

That is how you end a season.

Damn you Matt Wiener and your killer team of writers.

The helicopters hit a civilian building under construction on the farm, killing killing three men, the wife of a guard and four children

Can someone explain to me why members of our armed forces don’t resign over things like this? When I read something like that, I can’t help but think of how I would feel if my family got blown up in an airstrike. I mean, they blew up kids for fuck’s sake and this happens all the time. Who thinks that this is OK? Are our troops totally without morals or conscience?

Hey, its what happens when, instead of fighting a war against an army, you are conquering a population thats resisting. Freind and foe are no longer easily distinguished, really, everyone is foe, even if they are not toting a gun, they hate you just as much and its their brther, husband or son toting the gun.

Here’s a truth. Terrorism is the ONLY POSSIBLE MEANS to subdue a resistant population. When you are liberating an occupied country, its easy, you fight the army, they wear uniforms and generally go around openly being an army, so you know who they are, and when you are done, the people come out and say thank you.

But when you are occupying a country against the will of the majority of the people, well, you defeat the army, so they take off their uniforms and take to the hills, and sneak down and set bombs and booby traps. When the French resistance did it they were heroes.

And the only way there is to stop them is the way the Romans did it, the way the Nazis did it, you engage in terroristic retaliation. If the resistance kills 10 of your men, you march into the nearest town and kill 100 people at random, thus teaching the resistance that what they do to you will be visited on their countrymen tenfold. Thats what we did to Fallujah.

There is no other way. Its what we were reduced to doing in Vietnam, and in this war. We are halfhearted about it, most of the time we try to do the impossible and fight an army of ghosts that turns back into the guy at the falafel shop the next morning, but when pressed, we have to be like the Roman Legions or the Nazis, and use terroristic retaliation.

In theory, it should be impossible for a country like ours to engage in a war of conquest, because its just a natural fact, wars of conquest cannot be won without genocide and terrorism. You cannot subdue a resistant population without terrorism and genocide.

And that causes generations-long enmity. Thats why we should not ever try.

Whats amazing is that the Asians seem much more forgiving, the Vietnamese seem to have no longstanding hatred of us. Is that one of the differences between the european culture and the asian cultures, some kind of buddhist-confucion, taoist acceptance? In the balkans, neighbors still kill neighbors over a war that happened in, what, 1100, when the muslims reached there european apogee there. Yet the philipinos have forgiven us our brutal war of conquest some hundred-plus years ago, and the Vietnamese seem to have forgiven too.

Somehow I think the Iraqis wont.

@Original Andrew:
I think I can explain (my only “expertise” is based on reading about soldiers in battle and studying small units in battle when I was training to be an infantry officer in the reserves) is that the unit is everything. The group dynamic/group think sublimates the individual hence the old saying “if you break down then we break down” etc.

This pull of the unit/group is stronger in elite units more than regular (I’m guessing it was Special Forces or Rangers did the raid.) This is why it takes a really strong and brave individual to stand up and say no.

Also in combat you don’t have much time to think and ponder. It is all GO GO GO GO GO GO plus merely act/react. In many cases you are an extension of your commanders, a weapon to be pointed at the enemy and you pull the trigger.

I’m not excusing what they did, I’m just saying that this is what I understand about this.


Yes, but the individual soldiers who carry out these attacks–how do they live with themselves? I wouldn’t even kill a moth. How do they call home and tell their mom or significant other or whoever that they butchered a whole family today?

@Mistress Cynica:
Thanks. Yes, I did catch that on the link from Jez. It was funnier than the actual Mad Men parody which I thought was really weak.

@Original Andrew: No soldier, even in a just war against an army of soldiers, can do their job, which is to kill, without letting go of normal human feeling. Esprit de corp, it means to value you and your fellow soldiers above anything. I don’t think they are psychopaths or evil, war is evil and they are thrown into it. Someone told them to attack that house, told them its an enemy, they might see signs, in the fleeting seconds, that their information is wrong, but they are themselves terrified too, and reconciling all the conflicting information, when they have been conditioned to do their jobs as unfeeling machines, and they are full of adrenaline and fear. Its just a clusterfuck. C’est la guerre is not a asimple cliche, its a profound statement of what happens. Bad shit happens. Thats why you shouldn’t start wars, once they are started, its inevitable, bad shit happens.

@Original Andrew: Studies in, I think, WW II and Korea, found most infantrymen didn’t fire their guns. Most of the shooting was apparently done by guys who are born to kill. This was one of the rationales for the automatic assault rifle. You didn’t have to draw a bead on a human being, steady the rifle and drop him. You just spray and pray.

Jeebus, we must read the same books.

SLA Marshall’s Men Under Fire
J. Glenn Grey’s The Warriors: Reflections in Battle

@Original Andrew: So now we have air attacks in Pakistan and Syria. What’s next, Mexico?

@Dodgerblue: Mexico is too close.

My money is on Indonesia (bonus points for where Black Eagle spent his life age 5-11 or so).

Meanwhile, Tony Hillerman died today. That made me sad.

@ManchuCandidate: Or Naval War College studies or other war colleage research that was cited in them. In another life I had to spend a lot of time with that body of research literature.

@Original Andrew: T/J: Was that your beautiful white bull terrier, Kaleb? Gorgeous dog. I have a weakness for them since we have a boxery-pit bullish brindle dog who is just about the most loving and intelligent dog I’ve ever know.

And this morning an unnamed high ranking defense department official in DC admits all and even brags and makes sabre-rattling noises about it, confirming that special forces ground troops were indeed landed; can you say SecDef? Oh yes indeed, they are so hoping Hopey will respond with some mushy weak socialism, thats all this was about.

The boys who shot some strangers in the dark from far away, they’s innocent, its the brass that deliberately ordered an attack because it would make a good McCain talking point, now thats evil.

@SanFranLefty: My grandma loves his books. And she’s not much older than him. I should give her a call.

@SanFranLefty, mellbell: @SanFranLefty: Hillerman was one of my journalism instructors at the University of New Mexico. I always called him “Professor Hillerman” after that. One of his killers, Dick Pfaff, is named after the adult supervisor for the UNM student newspaper and one of his poker buddies. Hillerman was a good guy and never got full of himself, although he did assign us to read one of his pre-Jim Chee books because it involved political reporting. He was once editor of the Santa Fe New Mexican, where Mrs RML works. We got the call on this last night when they were putting together the coverage. Hillerman’s daughter, one of several kids he and his wife adopted, is an editorial writer at the Albuquerque paper’s Santa Fe edition. Mrs. RML may be going to the funeral.

@Prommie: you called Special Forces yesterday, right? On the nose, dude.

@redmanlaw: What did you think of the Jim Chee novels? I liked the earlier ones but thought that he was kind of phoning it on on the last couple.

@Dodgerblue: I read a few, but kind of lost interest. I generally don’t read fiction, especially mysteries except for those by James Ellroy and that genre, and once in a while some science fiction, i.e., Snow Crash and The Execution Channel (four stars, btw). Basically, my reading consists of history, politics, biography, some science, hunting, fly fishing and firearms.

@Dodgerblue, Prommy: Except for a Predator, what else would they use, Larry the Cable Guy and Delta Farce? What would be more awesome: robots.

@redmanlaw: You might want to give this a try: I thought it was great, maybe because I have a few Asperger-like traits.

@Dodgerblue: Looks weird enough. Oddly enough for someone who doesn’t ready mysteries, I have had one outlined for a while that I should actually start writing sometime (which would require a major reordering of “spare time”).

@redmanlaw: May I introduce you to Nation Novel Writing Month? I’ll be working on novel #3 this year. I seem to knock out about 3500 – 5000 words in a typical day.

@Dodgerblue: I loved that book – I read it when it came out. I’m a big Arthur Conan Doyle fan, so I enjoyed the Sherlock Holmes references throughout.

nojo: The editing box is blowing chunks — it seems to just hang while “Loading comment” and never progresses beyond that point. I also see that the 10 minute countdown timer on comment editing is non-functional. Was this an intentional change?

RML: What I was trying to fix was “National…”

chiming in with lefty, i loved that book. one of the best books i read last year, and one of the very few i would read again. fascinating, really.

@IanJ: Awesome link, thanks. I’m attracted to the “quantity, not quality” aspect of this thing. Now, if I can just remember to actually start on November 1.

@IanJ: Well, look at that. I’ll have to figure out what I did yesterday that broke it.

@redmanlaw: funny thing. In 1980 or so, I went camping in Grand Teton National Park, got sick, spent a couple days in my tent, passed the time by outlining a detective novel based loosely on the poker variant “Follow The Bitches.” I still have the outline, haven’t done a damned thing with it in the past 28 years.

@IanJ: Ah. Rogue space in a plug-in file. Should work now.

@nojo: Just like the outdated server routine that crippled the NSA in late 2000 (per the Shadow Factory by James Bamford)!

@redmanlaw: Pretty close — programming is touchy. In this case, I was trying to figure out why Dodger’s mini-avatar wasn’t showing up in the recent-comments list, and I had to go all geek on that program file. But I left the equivalent of a cotton ball in the cavity when I stitched it up.

Palin has come up with a cool new racist joke based on “joe the plumber.” In a speech this morning, according to them what seen it, she did a long list of “Joes,” the plumber, the taxi driver, the snow machine racer, and ended by saying “and my favorite, Joe Mamma!” “Joe Mamma,” get it?

Which reminds me, does anyone here speak Jive? According to the pigfuckers, thats gonna be the official language of the US starting November 5, so we better start studying. For our first assignment, study the following:

Attendant: Can I get you something?
Jiveman #2: S’mo fo butter layin’ to the bone. Jackin’ me up. Tightly.
Attendant: I’m sorry I don’t understand.
Jiveman #1: Cutty say he cant hang.
Woman : Oh stewardess, I speak jive.
Attendant: Ohhhh, good.
Woman : He said that he’s in great pain and he wants to know if you can help him.
Attendant: Would you tell him to just relax and I’ll be back as soon as I can with some medicine.
Woman : Jus’ hang loose blooood. She goonna catch up on the`rebound a de medcide.
Jiveman #2: What it is big mamma, my mamma didn’t raise no dummy, I dug her rap.
Woman : Cut me som’ slac’ jak! Chump don wan no help, chump don git no help. Jive ass dude don got no brains anyhow.

@nojo: Sorry to have caused you the trouble.

@Dodgerblue: It’s all your fault, you and your capital letters in your email addresses. Gravatar only matches coded versions of lower-case addresses, so it was shooting snowflakes.

The main program recognizes that, and adjusts accordingly for the comments. But the recent-comments file is a tad old, and wasn’t hip to the new regime.

But all for the best. I hate snowflakes.

@Dodgerblue: Check out my wilderness pics on Stinque Jam 2.

Ooohh, here’s the latest proof Barry is a socialist, McCain is throwing around a tape of a Hopey interview from 2001 in which he said this:

“One of the I think the tragedies of the Civil Rights movement was because the Civil Rights movement became so court focused I think that there was a tendency to lose track of the political and community organizing and activities on the ground that are able to put together the actual coalitions of power through which you bring about redistributive change and in some ways we still suffer from that.”

Ohhh, he said “redistributive,” must be a socialist.

Like, yeah, same as if I said “if your hollandaise falls, you must add a little more butter and beat vigorously to redistribute the oil globules through the protein matrix.” Yup, the Socialist Chef. Talk about out of context. Next they are gonna claim his sister is a practicing thespian.

He he, hey Beevis, he said “homeowner.”

@nojo: In my house, it’s always my fault. You can ask my wife and daughters.

@redmanlaw: That doesn’t look like 1992 hair to me…

Meanwhile, I’ve added a Stinque Jams link in the left menu, so our Collective Embarrassment doesn’t get buried. I’ll probably need to make that more sophisticated later so you’re not loading umpteen jams at once on the page, but it takes care of immediate needs.

@redmanlaw: Cool. I’ve got a couple of Yosemite pics from last weekend that I’ll put up there.

@ManchuCandidate: “Harvester of Sorrow”


Harvester of sorrow
Language of the mad
Harvester of sorrow

All have said their prayers
Invade their nightmares
See into my eyes
Youll find where murder lies


@nabisco: (re NaNoWriMo) We could make a Stinquers group (with more or less loss of anonymity) and race for wordcount… There’s nothing like a bit of competition to keep you going.

@Lyndon LaDouche:

He’s a Dalmatian. I have two, and they’re such good buddies. Really sweet dogs, especially after a few hours at the dog park or daycare.

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