Situational Bankruptcy

Look what invading Afghanistan did for them.

On days that we agree with him, we like to mention that Nick Kristof was a student reporter for McMinnville’s community newspaper a few years before we landed there.

You know, McMinnville. McMinnville, Oregon. Yamhill County? Turkey Rama? Retirement home of the Spruce Goose?

Fine. Portland-area community newspaper. Down the road from Nike. Sheesh.

Anyway, yesterday was one of those days:

President Obama and Congress will soon make defining choices about health care and troops for Afghanistan.

These two choices have something in common — each has a bill of around $100 billion per year. So one question is whether we’re better off spending that money blowing up things in Helmand Province or building up things in America…

So doesn’t it seem odd to hear hawks say that health reform is fiscally irresponsible, while in the next breath they cheer a larger deployment of troops in Afghanistan?

It’s the old bake-sales-for-military argument, or the even older guns-or-butter. And the usual suspects are making the usually suspect case, that bankrupting our nation over two elective wars will keep America safe for insurance and drug companies and tax cuts for the insanely wealthy.

For Nick reminds us — without saying as much — that even the Afghan war was a matter of choice, not obligation. We could have regarded 9/11 as what it was — a criminal act — and proceeded accordingly. It was mentioned at the time. And quickly shouted down.

Days like yesterday, we’re astounded that one small Oregon newspaper could have produced two world-class journalists like Nick Kristof and ourself — born just a day apart, to note yet another eerie similarity in our fatefully intertwined lives. And while in darker moments we’ll grant that perhaps the New York Times is a more prestigious perch than a Cannibal Anarchist blog, that’s only because Nick had a 24-hour head start.

America’s Defining Choice [NYT]
72 Comments

Only point I’d like to make is that there is an obscure economic study on the value of $ used for military and civy purposes.

Rate of Return for the gubbiment on Military spending is for every $ you put in, you get a $ back (at best and assuming, big assumption, Blackwater doesn’t steal it.)
ROR = 0%.

Rate of Return for the gubbiment on Civy spending is for $ you put in you get 4-6X $ back in tax receipts.
ROR = 300-500%.

I don’t know if Kristoff is blessed because of one day. He’d have to ask Malcolm Gladwell about it since it seems he has all the answers to everything…

So doesn’t it seem odd to hear hawks say that health reform is fiscally irresponsible, while in the next breath they cheer a larger deployment of troops in Afghanistan?

I almost posted to Stinque a Washington Post unsigned editorial on this subject a couple of weeks ago, but just didn’t have the heart. It was, as you might expect, a grab bag of sophistry and stupidity.

But is a new war tax needed? In fact, if you apply the same logic to defense spending that Mr. Obama has used for health care — that projected future savings offset new spending — he has paid for the proposed escalation in Afghanistan many times over. Overall, Mr. Obama’s plan for defense spending projects $1.5 trillion in savings over 10 years.

This is, of course, complete bullshit, budget games, and lame justifications for an unwinnable war that is costing of billions.

IMO
the bankruptcy we have to worry about as a country is moral bankruptcy.

we are teetering.

@Benedick in mourning:
you don’t write, you don’t call….

IS SOVEINIR COMING TO PROVIDENCIALES?????

Costing billions and killing lots of human beings, each of them someone’s child. “When will they ever learn?”

“We have confirmation from the set of Levi’s Playgirl shoot that he
has just posed naked with a hockey stick,” Gawker reported. (They also
included an additional personal detail, but it’s not something I want
to be responsible for searing into your brain.)

if somone could find this could you please sear me?

@baked: Homofascist and I are seeing Souvenir tonight! Neener, neener, neener! Oh, and I gloat only because you already live in paradise, darling.

@Capt Howdy:
ok
hard to decide what they were talking about since there was a lot of searing stuff:

After he left, Tank complained about a Page Six item accusing Levi having a small dick and thus afraid to do any full-frontal shots: “That’s not true!”

Levi returned his trophy to the nice lady and said, “I can’t believe I just won a giant silver dildo.”

Tank said, “Those are all real women right? I don’t want to look if they’re not real women.” Another laugh. Nardicio tells them that they’re all real women. I pointed out that there were definitely some drag queens in the mix.

@baked: I won’t know anything till next week at the earliest.

@flippin eck: Good luck.

@Capt Howdy: I can’t begin to try to unpack that. I’m going to go wash the dogs.

He is a fucking discredited fucktard columnist for a war hawk newsletter that helped drive the US into complete bankruptcy and precipitate the deaths and dismemberment of millions. You bring on the apocalyptically vulgar in ways that are refining 21st century media. He isn’t fit to change the cartridge on your printer. The fucking guy completely and totally missed the story again in his fucking attempt at a column. Non-state combatant war fighting has been a discipline of study in the armed forces war colleges since Wold War II. Some of the literature from the 70s onward brilliantly predicts the rise of organizations like Al Qaeda, sage stuff that has almost never been animated in policy, except for counter-insurgency work in the Philipines during the 1990s – and it woiked. Instead the Americans have prosecuted big-ticket wars post-9/11. Assholes like Kristof are supposed to be resource-rich opinion forges with wherewithal to dig into the available literature. Crap like this you can read in a local small town rag.

If all the economists in the world were laid end to end, I wouldn’t be surprised. But dum dum.

So anyway, here is my new economic theory, its called the circle-jerk economy. Say you put 100 people in a huge circle, and each one reaches to their left, and jerks off the person to their left; now, if handjobs are going for $100, all you need to do, is start with one person with $100; he gives it to the person on his right, and so on, and so on, and by the time that $100 has gone around the circle only once, those 100 people have a GDP of $10,000.

So, just make the circle bigger!

@Benedick: Santa Fe, too, dammit!

BTW, Santa Fe Opera tickets are available now for the Summer 2010 season at 2009 prices through December 31. Those of you with kidz (both of you) who could find themselves out in the high desert next summer may be interested in the relatively inexpensive Youth Opera tickets for weeknight full dress rehearsals. Those tix go on sale in the spring.

http://www.santafeopera.org/tickets/index.aspx

@FlyingChainSaw: They’re not stupid, its acuase the neocons are old cold war dinosaurs who see foreign policy as a constant fight for world domination, and their long term strategy has for decades involved monopolizing the oil supplies of the middle east and the ‘Stans, to keep it out of the hands of the chinks.

All else is smoke and mirrors. Al Quaeda, a handy excuse for what they were going to do anyway. This is a proxy war just as Vietnam was a proxy war. If there had been no al queada, we would have had to invent an al quaeda. Oh, wait, we did. We are not using the wrong strategy, swatting flies with howitzers, because anyone is stupid, we are using al queada as a pretense to bring in the stuff we will need to occupy and control these places for decades and defend them against chinese and russian efforts at seizing some oil for themselves.

The stupidity is in committing trillions to monopolizing oil instead of moving on to a new energy technology that would make the whole struggle moot. Of course, if you are in the oil or military business, its not stupid by any analysis.

War for Oil. Weapons and Oil, what perecentage of GDP are these things?

@SanFranLefty:
you got my attention.

ever wonder where all the real men have gone?

@Capt Howdy: That’s the funniest thing I’ve seen in days. Spandex and leg warmers! If I’m not mistaken our own dear Catt is the one with the moustache. Fave move? The face to ass pushups. Were they representing BYU? Cause they sure do look like the BYU musical theatre dept in action. Hooray!!

@redmanlaw: Too expensive.

@Prommie: MoJo was reporting this as the only possible reason for Iraq before we went and committed freedom all over them.

Nojo, how could mention Mac without reminding everyone that it is also the home of UFO Fest, a/k/a/ Alien Daze? Not to mention the place lucky enough to be the residence of moi!

Hmmm – destroy a bridge in a middle eastern country and rebuild it, or rebuild a bridge in this country? I think we know how this is going to go ….

@Prommie: That’s what I call a sustainable economy.

@Prommie:

Wait, what?

@Benedick:

At least you all didn’t get a hold of the OTHER video.

I just realized there is a pattern here, so subtle it is no wonder your ordinary US American Teabagger hasn’t recognized it.

Conjure up trillions to save rich bankers? Done quickly with little debate or oversight.

Put up a trillion or so to stimulate the economy? Well, that’s controversial.

Finance billions in debt every single month to sustain endless wars of choice and, by pure coincidence, line the coffers of the defense and oil industries? Absolutely necessary; a non-discretionary budget item.

Divert about half of what we spend on wars (perhaps by ending one or two of them?) in order to provide every single US American decent healthcare? Not unless we offset the cost with painful cuts to other social services. Anyway it’s more important to pay down the national debt before we start thinking about providing more “entitlements”.

If I didn’t know any better, I would suspect that our system is somehow rigged to concentrate wealth and power into the hands of a very few at the expense of the very many. But that would just be cynical.

/Breaking/ NO MORE FREE ABORTIONS for RNC staff!

Next up: bring your own damn coffee to work you lazy RNC welfare queens.

@Prommie:
you just dangled “oh wait. we did.” in front of me?
pedo, it’s way worse than that. i have promised to stop ranting about this, but you can’t just say “oh wait. we did” without further comment. for the children reading this. uncle dick and uncle george were not only aware of the events that would take place on september 11, 2001, they were actively COMPLICIT. can you say COMPLICIT children?
you may all roll your eyes in unison now. carry on.

@baked: That’s just a coincidence theory.

Personally, I’m not willing to fully commit to the idea that uncles Dick and George were actively complicit, but the sheer number of coincidences stacked up that morning give new meaning to the proverb crisis = opportunity.

It’s sad that so many wacky distractions have been promoted in order to discredit any rational, reasonable questioning of the official story, to the point where “truthers” are now equated with “birthers”.

So baked, we may not share exactly the same convictions about 9-11 (I am only a truther in the sense that I don’t believe I have the truth and I find it a wholly plausible possibility that uncle Dick–in particular–LIHOP).

But I’ll stand with you as a target for the ridicule and rotten eggs of those who smugly think the official narrative is close enough to the truth not to matter.

@Pedonator:

Absence of evidence is not evidence of absence.

However, it is a terrible crime to pin on anyone, even the Dark Lord, without a shred of proof. Suffice to say, for me, that even the crimes we KNOW for sure they are guilty of- in this case, cynically exploiting the deaths of 2993 people for political gain- are evil enough.

@Pedonator:

I’m personally more inclined to ascribe 9/11 to incompetence rather than malfeasance; but the response afterwards was 100% Straussian sleaze.

Everybody should sit down and watch this at some point. The Rumsfeld clips from the Team B days were bizarre to watch, as they were like a pre-echo of the Iraq war.

People. Focus. Spandex. Leg warmers. Priorities, for God’s sake!

@Tommmcatt is hunkered down in the trenches: Proof is not the same as evidence, and there’s plenty of evidence, even if much of it is circumstantial. Take a gander at Mike Ruppert’s Crossing the Rubicon.

It’s a tedious project to wade through his hundreds of pages of often reptitious presentation of the evidence, and his conclusions don’t always follow 100% logically from that evidence.

But without ever veering into the fringe-ish “missiles-hit-the-Pentagon” or “controlled demolition” theories, the sheer number of preoposterous coincidences he documents in “connecting the dots” is enough to give any reasonable person strong doubts that the generally accepted version of events is anywhere close to the truth.

Anyway, the crime of 9-11 pales in comparison to the crimes Dick and George perpetrated afterward, and I’m not talking about taking advantage of the situation for political gain. I’m talking body counts.

@Benedick: Ooohh, now you got me going, I am going to rent that ’80s Travolta movie, the completely retarded one, with all the spandex and leg warmers? Its one of the most unintentionally hilarious movies of all time. Up there with Roadhouse.

@Prommie: Haven’t seen Roadhouse but Staying Alive is a favorite. I particularly love the director at the first night sitting at a lighting board and saying to the operator “Gimme a blackout.”

well
the ultimate leg warmer movie is Flashdance

@Tommmcatt is hunkered down in the trenches: Their crimes were ignorance and hubris, they scoffed at what they thought of as Clinton’s obsession over Bin Laden, they believed that only “state sponsored” terrorism could ever be a real threat. Thats why Bush actually ridiculed Clinton for trying to kill Bin Laden, with his “spent $25 million to fly a missile up a Camel’s butt” line.

Of course, they were also arrogantly trying to strong-arm the Taliban into allowing Unocal to build the pipeline through afghanistan, to india, and to eventually provide natural gas to the giant Enron-built electric generating facility in India, which was itself the cause of another mini-scandal when the press actually caught on to the fact that SecState Powell made a special trip to India for the sole purpose of lobbying the Indian government to bail Enron out on that plant deal, which had turned into a debacle.

Thats why we had given the Taliban $40 million in aid in the early part of 2001, while they were blowing up the Buddhas and cutting the clits of women, to try to buy them off. Oh, and we do all know that Hamid Karzai was employed by Unocal, right? That we installed Unocal’s consultant/lobbyist on its afghan pipeline project to be president of Afghanistan?

But anywhoo, Bandar Bush was probably schmoozing Bush W and Cheney full bore with a line of “this Bin Laden, we have washed our hands of him, he has no support from Saudi Arabia, he is a paper tiger, don’t worry about him, while at the same time we were pushing the Taliban on that pipeline, not realizing that Bin Laden pulled the trigger on 9-11 as a direct result of our recent threats against the Taliban, threats they arrogantly and stupidly didn’t think could possibly trigger any kind of harm to the US, because Bin Laden wasn’t a state-spondored terrorist, and Iran was the real threat, and Unocal wants that pipeling and Enron needs that pipeline, and our first prez and VP wholly owned by the oil industry (and the saudis) were way more concerned with oil issues thaan anything and everything else.

So, yes, they were corrupt, stupid, they were adherents to a typical right wing ideology which was completely divorced from reality (neoconservatism) and therefore completley misread the situation they were ignorantly blundering into, and then they shit their pants and panicked when it blew up in their faces, but at least, they were happy to realize, it would give them the pretense for all the wars they would ever want, forever, as Rumsfeld wrote, what was it, 9-12, “sweep it all in, connected and unconnected.”

And then they proceeeded to commit war crimes and murder and torture and civil liberties violations on a vast scale.

Why doesn’t someone sue their asses, for the total information awareness project and the wiretapping, at least?

@mellbell: How did you know! You were not yet born, were you, when this atrocity was committed to film? It is truly godawfully hilarious, I caught 5 minutes when I was changing channels one night, I had never seen it before, and my chin dropped and I simply could not believe I was seeing what I was seeing, the same reaction I had to Eraserhead.

@Prommie:
Eraserhead
aka the greatest movie ever made.
when that movie premiered as a midnight movie (in what, 1974) I read about it a being unemployed my friend and I took acid and went to see the wed. midnight movie. we were so blown away we repeated that ceremony every wed night for the rest of the summer.
scenes from that movie are literally burned into my consciousness

@Prommie: Hey, I awoke in my daddy chair last night to see that an “urban” kung fu movie starring Vanity was on after Godzilla 2000, which I fell asleep to.

@al2o3cr, @Prommie: Why does it have to be either/or? Couldn’t it have been a heaping dose of incompetence with a soupcon of malfeasance?

We have so much evidence of both factors in almost everything that occurred on their watch…

@mellbell: @Prommie: I beg to differ. Perfect does indeed have much to recommend it but does it have John Travolta sweating in a loincloth making jazz hands? Or doing a tuck-jump shot from below? I think not. Does it feature the Satan’s Alley ballet? I rest my case.

since we are talking about movies I have another recommendation.

Surveillance

directed by the other Lynch, Jennifer. Davids daughter.
and the apple did not fall far from the tree. this movie is amazing. it is the best movie I have seen in years. I absolutely loved it. I cant say much of anything about it without spoilers because it is that kind of movie but I will say that whatever you expect, it will not be that.
see this movie.

i have a headache. in response to prommie’s theory, and pedo and catt’s cautious, coincidence theory… i say, if it walks like a duck……
tommie, did you ever look in the dark lord’s eye’s? they’re like a shark. a predator of monstrous proportion.
so dick, how many bodies would you pile to make billions?
i don’t think it got more complicated than that, in plain speak.

T/J @redmanlaw:
what cracks me up about that blog is the poll. and i know you voted, dincha? “how do you want to see the girls of the IDF” out of the 12 choices, the winner is ….with WEAPONS! what also makes laugh is the way they pose for the camera like a playboy spread. IDF goes wild! is next. the TRUTH is, these are tough cookies. i’ve seen them in action, well, street action. you may want to fuck them, but you definetly don’t want to fuck WITH them!

@baked: I was teasing a bit, referring to Ruppert’s reference to the MSM as “coincidence theorists”.

And I agree, Cheney is way past evil enough to have planned it all with glee. I doubt the guy can kiss his own grandchild without nefarious intent. I just don’t think he’s competent enough to be fully responsible for it.

Unfortunately, I have nothing to add to the discourse on the Legwarmer Cinema of the 1980’s.

@Prommie: I was but a wee lass at the time. Much, much later I came across it while flipping channels and was horrifically transfixed.

@Capt Howdy: I prefer to believe that what I remember from seeing Eraserhead are in fact hallucinations. It disturbs me to think that someone actually thought up what I remember as being depicted in the film, and I have a much easier time believing in the fundamental goodness of all humankind by believing that I hallucinated the whole thing and that noone could possibly have thought it up, if you know what I mean?

@mellbell: Horrifically transfixed, thats good, thats very good. Every scene which takes place in the “gym” or aerobics studio, whatever, is a stunning, jaw dropping wonder. Not for the cheap soft porn voyeurism aspect of it, but that they seem so totally oblivious to the cheese factor, I know I don’t have a good vocabularly for what I am trying to say. Just compare Perfect to Porkies. See, most cheesey soft-core sexploitation films at least have a sense of humor about it, how can you be so cheap and sleezie, without some self-denigrating humor to defuse, to tell the world, a bit shame-facedly, but at least honestly, hey, “I know, but ya gotta eat.” But what I recall of Perfect is that its completely serious, yet much much cheezier than Porkies, much cheezier than even Up the Creek, the most gratuitous-breast filled movie ever made (and by the way, my avatar at brand W is the female lead in Up the Creek). Its so strange to watch the scenes where Travolta is leering from 2 feet away at crotch shots of a woman on all fours doing leg thrusts, and there is no humor whatsoever, its serious. Like wow, wipe out, I was gone.

@mellbell: You must check out the work of NYC musician Adria Amram, a friend’s daughter, whose work I’ve been linking to in the past couple of days. She has a real feel for the 80s. Her music both glorifies and parodies the era although she was born in about ’81. Here’s a linky link to Euro Song. You should also check out Finger Blast and Mom Song (which baked liked).

http://www.funnyordie.com/videos/ea4aebece5/eurosong-from-adiraamram?rel=auto_related&rel_pos=6

You’re all talking about Perfect and Staying Alive and nobody before me has mentioned Showgirls????

Campiest.Movie.EVAH!

@Prommie: Have you not seen the movie? OMFG. Hee-fucking-larious. Totally unintentionally so, but hee-larious.

@Tommmcatt is hunkered down in the trenches:

Tommmy, you never told us you were in a dance troupe! Sweet ass, btw.

Oh and 9/11 was so obviously an inside job, bitches pleez.

Like those two towers could get hit by commerical jets and both just happen to collapse in a vertical fashion instead of toppling over. Just like in… oh, I dunno… a controlled demolition??

And the last jet just happened to hit an area of the Pentagon that coincidentally was undergoing “substantial renovations,” with hardly any workers there and no major operations centers??

The best magic tricks and frauds are commited openly, in broad daylight, with everyone watching but not realizing what they just saw.

@Original Andrew: And just to beat a dead horse, I’m inclined towards the controlled demolition theory, especially as regards WTC7 and the fact that no other similarly steel-skeletoned high rise had ever collapsed that way, even after burning much longer…

But even discounting that, what intrigues me is, there’s so much else, so many more mundane bereaucratic details that don’t add up, so much stuff that hasn’t been disputed or even addressed:

* Such as that all the prior flight deviations for x years of more than x minutes had seen NORAD notified and military fighters quickly dispatched to intercept;

* Such as the mysterious goings-on in the Cheney bunker detailed by Richard Clarke and/or Norman Mineta that indicate a surprised reaction to orders by underlings, as though they were being told to stand down;

* Such as the war games scheduled for that very day that saw most of the air power inconveniently dispatched far, far away;

* Such as the terrorism attack drills that were being conducted that very day in NYC;

…and on and on and on.

It’s enough to hold at least as much skepticism about the official fairy tale as one would, for instance, about the official explanations of the JFK assassination or the intelligence “failures” that led to the invasion of Iraq.

I am by no means ready to say Cheney, much less Bush (ha! ha! can you even imagine?) planned and executed the whole thing. I just think there’s a very good possibility that, with some advance knowledge that something wicked this way came, they may have been prepared to take full advantage of the situation. Perhaps even facilitate it. Maybe even without knowing the full extent of the destruction that would ensue; that wouldn’t matter to them anyway, it would be merely collateral damage in their savage quest for imperial power and incessant greed.

@Prommie: Don’t you think neoconservatism is just a front for a particular segment of the elite’s greed?

I find it disheartening to realize that only a few of us Stinquers seriously question the 9-11 thing. While many are deeply engaged in the JFK thing, which happened 45+ years ago. And he wasn’t even that fucking good a presnident!

Let us now praise Jimmy Carter, who at least had the Southern gumption to tell us to wear sweaters.

@Pedonator: People don’t, as a rule, seek out secret conspiracies that foward their interests. They seek out ideologies that confirm their interests, and provide them with moral justification for their greed. But they mostly, I believe, think they are acting in good faith, its just that in order to justify their greed and immorality, they are attracted to ideologies that morally justify their self-interest.

I really do believe that even the worst, Cheney, for example, in his mind, I think he thinks he is trying to do good. I think he believes in an ideology which says that lying is justified, I think he honestly believes that although the general public would be horrified by his true beliefs and motivations, he subscribes to an ideology that says that its necessary for the elite to lie to the public, for their own good, mind you. He believed, I think, that he was doing what was best, within the lense of an ideology shaped by self-interest and which justifies immorality as in the best interest of the many, who are not sophisticated enoough to understand why he and the elites had to lie to us.

And if you go read the neocon founder’s writings, thats exactly what he says.

Cheney really believes that his way is the best way, and will be good for all of us, he just doesn’t believe in democracy, that he should make his beliefs known and let the people vote on his beliefs, so instead, he believes its necessary to deceive the people in order to help them.

I am not apologizing for him, this whole ideology is evil, but you must understand, from the subjective standpoint of someone within this ideology, its not evil, in fact, he is doing us a favor by lying to us.

Strauss, thats the name of the founder of the neocon ideology, and from what I have read, its open and clear in his writing, that the people
are stupid, and its cool for the elite to lie to them when its in their best interest, even though they would not understand.

Of course, at its core, its an evil, anti-democratic ideology, that its adherents, whenever they take an oath of office and swear to uphold the constitution, are lying.

I am a pragmatist when it comes to what I think the democrats should do today, tomorrow, against this. But in my own heart, I think we should string them all up. They are, in my heart of hearts, guilty of the worst kind of treason against the very ideals of democracy, that they are criminals and frauds, and are guilty of taking false oaths, that they are guilty of fraud and treason.

But to call for violence against them would be to be like them, and these are crimes that can only be punished politically, not through the courts, doing it through the courts would only discredit the judicial system by ensnaring it in politics.

I am a pragmatist in what I think we should do, today, tomorrow, but that doesn’t mean I don’t recognize their criminality and evil.

@Promnight:

But to call for violence against them would be to be like them, and these are crimes that can only be punished politically, not through the courts, doing it through the courts would only discredit the judicial system by ensnaring it in politics.

I don’t think I’ve called for that, except in the depths of snark. Anyway the judicial system cannot be more discredited than it already is. I had hoped it would be different under Hopey’s administration, but sadly it is obviously still snared in politics. And worse, justification for preserving and extending executive power grabs.

There is a place for pragmatism, and I’m glad you’re up to the challenge. I just don’t think it gets us anywhere in the context of this irredemable system, and I don’t think it’s gonna prevent cannibal anarchy.

@Pedonator: Don’t think my day to day pragmatism seperates us, in what we believe, and in what we desire, justice. I think W and Cheney are murderers, pure and simple, and when I say I think that they subjectively might believe they were doing good, thats faint praise, Hitler and Stalin both probably genuinely believed they were doing good, the thing is, anyone who subscribes to an ideology unthinkingly, is suscpetible to committing great crimes while nevertheless convinced they are doing good.

@Promnight: I think I understand. Hell, I’m day-to-day pragmatic in that I continue to show up for my job which I convince myself to be a lesser evil, in that I don’t actively do anything to make this place a more detestable shithole for the rest of humanity.

Since you bravely brought up the association of Cheney and Bush to Hitler and Stalin, I’d just go a bit more to say: I don’t think Cheney gives a fuck about humanity, he’s only concerned about amassing the greatest amount of wealth for hisself and his friends. If he thinks he’s doing right it’s because he only thinks right means might and wealth accumulated to his family and friends. I think History will view Cheney as the Hitler of the early 21st century, in terms of body count.

Bush, well, he doesn’t have to worry about it and I truly believe he is an imbecile, oh, sure, an imbecile who somehow got through Harvard and Yale, but an imbecile nonetheless. It’s almost cruel to assign nefarious motivations to such a person, because I truly think he’s on a different plane of existence.

@Pedonator: Shrub is retard boy, no offense intended to those who know/love individuals with developmental disabilities. Dick, on the other hand, is pure evil. I don’t want to go down all the 9/11 paths you kids go down because I will officially lose my mind. My position is that there were 500 flashing blaring lights which were willfully ignored.

Is that complicity? I don’t know. But I wouldn’t attribute any competency to them beyond their obvious sloth and laziness, willful or not.

i’m glad to wake up and see this conversation continued. and yes, i’m waiting for them to whip out the warren report too even though i’ll be dead. the 9-11 report is a laff riot of inconsistencies, outright lies, omissions, and fantastical coincidences. it insults your intelligence.
i stand firm with OA. whatever motivations or justifications we/they want to make is one thing. the other: it was an inside job. period.

@Pedonator: I have no idea about this but one thing I do know is that the collapse of the buildings makes perfect sense given their design. You refer to them as ‘steel skeletoned’: but they weren’t. They were a very radical design in which the floors were suspended from a central column which housed all the power, water lines, staircases, elevators, etc. The point of the design was that nothing seemed to hold up the floors. They were completely open with no pillars, no supports, no girders. It was one of the design elements that made them so beautiful. Seeing those vast, open floors really did make one gasp. Holding everything in place was the thin outer skin which was ribbed vertically to give it strength. I remember how they would sway in a high wind. So I don’t think that they way they collapsed, or even that the collapsed at all, was surprising. Unfortunately it was kind of built into the design. Had they had a more conventional steel girder design they probably wouldn’t have collapsed.

@Benedick:
what flavor is that kool aid dear?

the most damning evidence is the very construction you are referring to. the buildings were designed to withstand a plane crash! the testimony from the engineers is all you need to know. that central column was WHY the towers could not have fallen the way they did from a crash. google the engineers for an eye opener.
it was a controlled demolition.

@baked: They were designed to withstand a crash, I know. But not the kind of heat that was given off by the crash.

All I know is that I saw a very long piece about the buildings on PBS (darling, there’s no need to start hurling feces at me!) detailing exactly how the heat buckled the structure and that as soon as one floor broke, the weight of its collapse smashed the one beneath it, the anchors of which had already been compromised, and then those two fell – and so on. Each collapse increasingly devastating because each brought more weight down with it. The idea of a demolition is hard to swallow because it would have had to involve so many people doing so many strange things so publicly – to say nothing of carting all that stuff up in elevators.

The ‘controlled demolition’ idea strikes me as being about refusing to accept that we are invincible. Had this all been organized as part of a brilliant plot they would have staged it later in the day. That it happened so early betrays, to my mind (such as it is) a lack of understanding of the city. Had the planes hit two hours later – even one hour later – the death toll would have been much, much higher.

Did you read the recent theory that lays the ultimate blame for the sinking of the Titanic to the fact that she was so big, and needed so many rivets, that they were forced to buy what they knew to be sub-standard rivets to finish her and get her launched. It was those rivets that didn’t withstand an impact the ship had been designed to withstand. I suspect something similar went on with the Trade Center.

And BTW, what the fuck is going on with reconstruction? This is taking longer than Chartres.

@baked: As Benedick notes, they did withstand the plane crashes.

As far the heat, I vaguely recall that engineers were aware of the potential problem, and the buildings were being retrofitted to manage it. But the asbestos wraps (or whatever they were using) hadn’t reached the top, the planes were carrying full tanks of jet fuel, and there was plenty of combustible material in the offices. The support melted, and the weight of each floor caused a cascading reaction.

Even with retrofitting, I’m not sure the engineers anticipated that particular condition. And this doesn’t even consider the possibility of management malfeasance. There’s that new theory about the Titanic’s construction, and there’s also the evidence that the New Orleans levees weren’t victims of Katrina, but criminally shoddy workmanship.

As to the surrounding buildings — also a subject of Truther suspicion — I’ll let somebody else take those up.

I can no longer remember who designed the buildings – I can barely remember breakfast – but I don’t think that this particular design was ever repeated. Don’t know if I’m right about that.

I’m fully aware of how crazy it all sounds–and that any real hope of a thorough investigation has been prevented by the Truther movement loonies, various congressional jackholes and the public’s general ignorance and apathy.

But the fact is that there were too many spectacular coincidences for any reasonably intelligent person to accept, not to mention the sheer ridiculousness of the Official Explanations, and that somehow the end results were that Bush, Cheney and all of their goons and supporters got everything they ever wanted and none of them were ever held accountable for any of it.

There’s also the unfortunate end result that the Demoncrats intellectually collapsed as an actual opposition party in tandem.

@Benedick:

It was a Seattle-born architect, Minoru Yamasaki.

@Original Andrew: There’s also the unfortunate end result that the Demoncrats intellectually collapsed as an actual opposition party in tandem. God knows that’s true.

@Original Andrew: A Muslim. Right. Has the design ever been repeated?

@Benedick:

There’s a skyscraper here that’s like a much smaller version of one of the WTC towers, perhaps it was a prototype? I can’t find an online photo of that one.

There’s also the more glamorous Rainier Tower, which rests on a gravity defying pedestal jutting up from the street level.

@Original Andrew: As before noted, I did love the look of the towers. I loved that straight up and down thing. I always took out-of-towners to the observation deck. Now, do you know if it’s true that they were designed without light switches, that they were intended to be two pillars of light at the entrance to New York in a fairly overwhelming reprise of the Statue of Liberty’s torch? I seem to remember that from somewhere but can’t find it now. And while they were being built the first energy crisis hit? So the light switch thing was re-thought. Oh, and also, as I sailed from NYC on SS New Amsterdam, we sailed right past the buildings as they were under construction and one of them was seriously on fire. Damage done?

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