Archives for October, 2003

Pearls of Wisdom from Our Leaders

“If we have to, we just mow the whole place down, see what happens. You’re dealing with insane suicide bombers who are killing our people, and we need to be very aggressive in taking them out.”

–Trent Lott

Iraq is dangerous, and it’s dangerous because terrorists want us to leave. And we’re not leaving.

George W. Bush

Hat tip to Chris Kilmer.

Posted on Oct 31, 2003 in Uncategorized | 1 Comment

It’s That Time of Year

tattoo.bmp

What I wouldn’t give for some of these ’70s kid-costumes. I lament the decline of the $10 plastic kid-costume. There’s no surer or cheaper way for a grown man to look freakish, disturbing, and hilarious on Halloween than to pop over to CVS and pick up a costume designed for someone a third your size.

Posted on Oct 29, 2003 in Uncategorized | Comments Off

CBS Special">Reagan: “I am Antichrist” in CBS Special

It would be a whole lot cooler if he’d followed that up with “I am an anarchist.”

Posted on Oct 27, 2003 in Uncategorized | 1 Comment

Speaking of D.C. Nightlife

Jeremy Lott has a nice writeup of the blogorama on the spiffy new American Spectator site. Julian has pictures, Brooke has a “harumph.”

And this site purports to catalogue “the world’s best bars.” I’m skeptical, given that the D.C. page highlights Dragonfly, which I’ve always found annoying and pretentious. It looks like one of the milk bars from A Clockwork Orange, but instead of being filled with costumed and dangerous lumpenproles (which would be cool), it’s full of boring, well-dressed twits who’d be C-list beautiful people in New York (which isn’t).

Posted on Oct 27, 2003 in Uncategorized | 9 Comments

Banned in D.C.

Anyone who wants to help save D.C. nightlife, such as it is, and head off the Smokefree Workplaces Act of 2003, should come to tonight’s organizational meeting at Zoe’s, 942 Westminster, 8pm.

Posted on Oct 27, 2003 in Uncategorized | Comments Off

Ideological Blinders, Exhibit A

Apparently, Donald Rumsfeld thinks we should still be in Beirut. I lack metrics to be able to determine if that’s the silliest idea yet in the war on terrorism, but it’s up there.

Posted on Oct 26, 2003 in Uncategorized | 2 Comments

Misc.

I’ve decided that I’m very, very lucky that I graduated college right before the whole Dave Matthews thing started.

I’ve decided that there is no conceivable use for a six-DVD changer unless you’re an opium addict about to embark on a long smoking session, and you don’t want to get up from the couch for the next 12 hours.

I’ve also decided that I’m no longer going to use the word “meme” when what I really mean is “idea.”

Posted on Oct 25, 2003 in Uncategorized | 9 Comments

Terrifying Reading

James Bovard–our one-man eternal vigilance committee–has a new book out on the war on terror. I review it on the American Spectator site, here.

Posted on Oct 24, 2003 in Uncategorized | Comments Off

We Don’t Need No Steenking Pledges

The Pledge of Allegiance is for goose-steppers. Or so I argue here. The piece also ran in the Sacramento Bee. Maybe the Gubernator read it.

Posted on Oct 24, 2003 in Uncategorized | 5 Comments

Anyone But Clark

Not only did Wes Clark kill a whole mess of civilians while dropping bombs on a country that never threatened us (Serbia), he also had at least a passive role at Waco:

Although Clark never publicly has discussed his role in the attack on the Branch Davidians and did not respond to Insight’s requests for an interview to discuss his role at Waco, there are indisputable facts that confirm he had knowledge of the grim plans to bring the standoff to an end. Between August 1992 and April 1994, Clark was commander of the 1st Cavalry Division of the Army’s III Corps at Fort Hood, Texas. According to a report by the U.S. Department of the Treasury, the list of military personnel and equipment used at Waco included: 15 active-duty military personnel, 13 Texas National Guard personnel, nine Bradley fighting vehicles, five combat-engineer vehicles, one tank-retrieval vehicle and two M1A1 Abrams tanks. Additionally, Fort Hood reportedly was used for much of the training for the bloody attack on the Davidians and their children.

Based on the fact that military equipment from Fort Hood was used in the siege and that training was provided there, say critics, it is clear the commanding officer of the 1st Cavalry had direct knowledge of the attack and, more likely than not, was involved in the tactical planning.

I’m no fan of Dubya’s, but as far as I know, his only role in Waco has been clearing brush and drinking nonalcoholic beer.

Posted on Oct 23, 2003 in Uncategorized | 7 Comments

Blogorama: Feel the Excitement

Bloggers’ happy hour tonight at the Rendevous Lounge on 18th and Kalorama. K Street will be filming.

Check the comments to Julian’s post for a partial guest list…

Also, some of us will have information available on how you can help us fight the impending assault on D.C. nightlife: the Smokefree Workplaces Act of 2003.

Posted on Oct 23, 2003 in Uncategorized | Comments Off

Line of the Day

[Deadpan:] Did you guys realize that Jessica Lynch is the same Jessica that fell down the well when she was a baby?

Jerry Brito

Posted on Oct 23, 2003 in Uncategorized | 2 Comments

Didn’t You Get the Memo?

Here’s the Rumsfield memo everybody’s talking about. Do you read “my impression is that we have not yet made truly bold moves” as being in the context of military transformation, or in the broader context of the whole war on terror? Because if it’s (a), that seems fair enough, but if it’s (b), then how much khat is he chewing? Say whatever you want about the war on Iraq, but it was nothing if not a bold move.

Another interesting passage is here:

Today, we lack metrics to know if we are winning or losing the global war on terror. Are we capturing, killing or deterring and dissuading more terrorists every day than the madrassas and the radical clerics are recruiting, training and deploying against us?

I find this half-encouraging, as it suggests that Rumsfeld is not a member of the “no such thing as a marginal terrorist” camp, in Julian’s phrase. Many of his supporters in the press and blog-world blockheadedly apply a static analysis to the terror-problem, acting as though there’s a fixed supply of jihadis. Rumsfeld here recognizes that the mix of incentives and disincentives partially shaped by U.S. policy has an impact on the overall number of terrorists we face. Unfortunately, many of his preferred courses of action seem uniquely designed to provide talking points to the radical clerics he complains about.

Posted on Oct 22, 2003 in Uncategorized | 1 Comment

Vote Libertarian! Elect Dean!

The libertarian candidate in 2004 just might garner enough votes to throw the race to the Dems, according to political scientist Lawrence Jacobs, writing in the Washington Post:

Here is the big news coming out of the 2002 statewide contests: Third parties also spell trouble for Bush. Democrat Jim Doyle broke a string of four straight Republican wins for governor in Wisconsin by a 45-to-41 percent margin over his Republican opponent, Scott McCallum, last year, and two reasons stand out: The Green Party’s Jim Young drew only 3 percent of potential Democratic voters and, most impressively, the Libertarian candidate, Ed Thompson (renegade brother of the secretary of health and human services, Tommy Thompson), took a whopping 11 percent, hurting the GOP most.

The Libertarian and Independence parties are significant threats to the Republican Party in 2004. The soaring budget deficit in Washington, ballooning expenditures and an expansion of government under Republican control of the White House and Congress have not only fired up the usual inside-the-Beltway deficit hawks; they have also fueled a grass-roots protest movement. Some of those disaffected Americans won’t vote at all. Some will vote Democrat. But many will go outside the box to vote for a third party.

In 15 statewide elections last year, 2 percent or more of voters cast their ballots for the Libertarian Party, which has picked up the banner of small government. Candidates running as independents, who generally promote balanced budgets, cleared the 2 percent mark in seven different states.

Whether Bush can win these states in 2004 may depend on these third parties and their sustained, or even enhanced, drawing power. Bush won Nevada by 3 percent in 2000; Libertarian Dick Geyer and two candidates running as independents, David Holmgren and Jerry Norton, together captured 4 percent of the vote in the 2002 gubernatorial race. The president won New Hampshire by about 1 percent in 2000; the votes for Libertarian candidates in the 2002 races for governor (John Babiarz) and Senate (Clarence G. Blevens) each exceeded Bush’s margin. Arizona, a reliable Republican state, gave Bush a comfortable victory in 2000, but the independent candidate, Richard Mahoney, and the Libertarian candidate, Barry Hess, together drew a surprising 9 percent in the governor’s race in 2002.

Here’s the decisive question that is not being asked about the Bush campaign: Will voters for independent or Libertarian candidates in the 2002 elections coalesce behind one candidate in the 2004 presidential race? Finding a symbolic spending bill for the president to veto next spring or summer may not be enough to distract supporters of these third parties from the huge budget deficit run up on the Republican watch. The receptiveness to independent and Libertarian candidates is rooted in a deep frustration among many Americans that Republican leaders have abandoned Ronald Reagan’s commitment to small government and bogged the country down in costly operations in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Incidentally, I’m not a “Dean-leaner.” I have no intention of voting for Dr. D. I think Radley got it right when he said the vote-for-Dean impulse is akin to leaving the bar with the first chick you see in order to get back at your treacherous ex. But those of you that are libertarian Dean-leaners should be happy to learn that you can cast a vote that involves little compromise on principle, while enjoying a chilly dish of electoral revenge.

Posted on Oct 21, 2003 in Uncategorized | 8 Comments

White Riot

Oh, so that’s why people don’t like the New York Times:

Punk show in Montreal gets cancelled when Canadian bureaucrats stop the bands from entering the country. As a result, several dozen overtattooed and underemployed lowlifes express their displeasure with an assault on private property that “destroyed or damaged 42 cars, smashed the windows of nearly a dozen nearby businesses and looted a record store around the corner.”

The Times’ headline?

Divining the Wellspring of Rage That Incited Montreal Punk Riot.

Posted on Oct 21, 2003 in Uncategorized | 1 Comment