Friday, March 31, 2006


Supreme asshole Justice Scalia flips off liberals in church, taking a break from prejudging cases of detainee rights in the government's favour at speaking engagements.

Time for a little "I've been gone forever because my work banned and I'm too lazy to do this in my own time" roundup!

It looks like that fellow I wrote about in my last real post has been released and all it took were the efforts and protests of Britain, Canada, Germany, Italy and Sweden, as well as Pope Benedict XVI, George Bush, Karzai and Condi Rice. Also, a cited lack of evidence and testimony that the defendant was "mentally disturbed" and unfit for trial.

And now he only needs to deal with fundamentalist dicktrees that want him dead and finding asylum.

My only question here is, will Heaven and Earth come together again the next time to pull the fat from the fire? The Afghan government has made it painfully clear that they do not accept or tolerate even the existence of other religions, so what's to stop this shit from happening next week to someone else? Will they continue to stone women to death on accusation of adultery? Will the pope weigh in on that one too? Is this the kind of "free and democratic government" we can expect to see in Iraq?

Islamic fundamentalists and Sharia law have no place crafting criminal law, just as evangelicals have no place telling any of us how to fuck, who to fuck or why to fuck. They like to think they do, but I've got one word for them "Vaffanculo!"

Americablog writer John Aravosis has a few words for the liberals that he says are hurting their own party with hatred for the concept of money, power and privilege.

Hate to play devil's advocate, and I usually agree with John on most issues, but there is something to be said for money and power overstepping its bounds.

I'm sorry but the outrage that causes some readers to (fairly or unfairly) make calls to you to account for your donations and the like comes from the same seething anger most liberals have for tax cuts that benefit the richest 1% while poor kids die in a war of choice or buried in a coal mine that ignored safety regulations for years.

It's the same anger that's directed at the corrupt, pension stealing higher-ups at Enron, the CEO's of companies that give them hundreds of millions of dollars while they run the company into the ground, and they still feel the need to charge outrageous amounts to the company expense account. The same anger we feel when a company is allowed to continue to pollute and destroy the environment because the fines are a slap on the wrist.

It's the same anger felt by those of us that need gasoline to work and live, and see the price go up in leaps and bounds while crude goes down, and big oil rakes in record profits across the board, those of us who need affordable healthcare or daycare and aren't getting it.

It's the same anger I felt when I saw Bush or one of his cronies stand up at a dinner and declare to scattered laughter that it was nice to see their base come out and support them, the rich and the richer.

That is (most times) a justified and a righteous anger, and one that could serve the Democratic Party well if they learned to use it.

Lastly, I think all the fund drive shit can get pretty excessive on that site. It *is* free hosting after all, and there are people I'd donate to long before I would John.

On the other side of the coin, to all those readers who complained about his picture with Katherine Harris, and him saying that she's a nice person, cut John some slack there, there's nothing wrong with acting civilly towards even your largest opponents. Remember, we aren't supposed to be the side that goes around calling people traitors for no reason.

Finally, Please go check out me buddies at Sadly, No! They've been on fire recently, especially with the Baghdad pictures....

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Sorry, try again

Haven't been updating because I've been unable to do anything when near a computer except play The Godfather repeatedly.

Stop reading blogs right now and go play this game, it's awesome. I can say that impartially because I haven't seen the movies. That's right, Star Wars neither.

What are you waiting for? Go!

Monday, March 20, 2006

Afghanistan forgotten.

It looks like Afghanistan has finally come full circle, they're expecting a bumper crop of opium this year, the Taliban is making a comeback in border areas of Pakistan, there are rumblings of a renewed insurgency, and they're holding a trial to sentence a person to death for being a Christian.

And this is the "success" story that's come out of the global war on terror. It does demonstrate, however, once again, that a poorly thought out war on a concept, employing the use of overwhelming force isn't an effective mechanism to bring about positive change. War on drugs, anyone?

Beyond my opposition to the Iraq war on it's moral and logistical basis, there lies a much bigger reason why this was the wrong war at the wrong time, and that is simply because Afghanistan needed us more. They needed us there for the long haul, the big and the small, and our attention was simply elsewhere, the media and the white house had found it's next big adventure, and Bin Laden was all but forgotten.

I think it's ironic that the poppy is widely regarded as a symbol for the bravery and sacrifice of the men and women that fought for freedom in World War 2, while these days it seems more a symbol of the futility of our current struggle to force feed democracy to the middle east at the barrel of a gun.

Saturday, March 18, 2006

Some gloom and doom to go with that hangover...

I was leaving some comments at a right leaning blog when I saw a thread asking about the bird flu and weather or not this is some sort of "Media Hype". If I've misrepresented anything, could any of you sciencey types correct me?

It’s not exactly rocket science. It’s really allot like playing the lottery.

Humans have no natural immunities against bird flu; the only saving grace right now is that it is very hard for us to catch.

However, viruses often mutate. They also exchange genetics with other virii. If, for instance an absolutely worst case scenario occurs, and the virus hits a metaphorical jackpot (maintaining it’s deadliness and virulence while gaining the ability to spread as easily as the annual flu), it could grind civilization to a halt. The costs to businesses alone would be immeasurable. The number of dead another lottery of circumstance, anywhere from single digit millions to a billion.

Then again, maybe not. Or maybe not so much, as it were. That’s the trouble about how much to worry about it. Ebola and other hemorrhagic fevers could be the same or much worse (Ebola kills 9 of 10).

I’d certainly recommend taking the threat seriously, if for no other reason than the fact that they can also be used as weapons. Doesn’t take much to incubate any of this and then attempt to release it if a dangerous enough idiot gets their hands on it.

If any of that happens, it’s going to make the threat of anthrax, insurgencies, conventional terrorism, even a single nuke combined seem tame.

Friday, March 17, 2006

St. Paddies day beer blogging.

The only green beer I could find outside the bar is Heineken, which isn't really green anyway, only the can.

At any rate, I just wanted to take a moment to aside to recognize a commenter that stopped by on my last thread. Now, before I link his website I need to say, this shit is NOT work safe. Seriously. So, anyway Bear_cave stops by and leaves a fairly innocuous comment.

I just have one thing to say here, either this is the most elaborate prank site ever conceived, or this guy is in the running for gayest blog I've ever seen. I didn't even know you could put porn in blogs.

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

Shorter Townhall:

Michelle Malkin: “Who will I use my quasi-celebrity status to attack next? That’s right, a seven year old girl. Seriously.”

Burt Prelutsky: “I don’t really have a point to speak of, except to attempt to perpetuate the myth of the giant underground poverty by choice community, even though the numbers of employed and still impoverished individuals is growing.” (Ok, not so short.)

Brent Bozell: “Fuck Helen Thomas!”

Mark Joseph: “Not even having a tape of yourself and Kid Rock pounding a couple of hookers will stop me from recommending your latest cashgrab if you put religious themes in your album.”

Doug Giles: “I’ve stolen Dennis Miller’s book of metaphors. Also, I hate having a woman as my boss. Also, God… and the bible.”

In other news: Raven the blogger takes a break from writing about her vagina to join a giant fucking carnival of people having a few drinks and either pretending to be drunk or making a huge adolescent affair out of being genuinely drunk.

"Raven: Ahh yes rogah waters…NOW I like his music no I love PINK FLOYD and his songs make me have orgasms wOOt- but his politics totallly turn me off. He’s a liberal freak who should and I htink does live in speewtFrancespeewt

buzzzzz buuuuzz buzz BUZZ"

Lack of posts.

Ok, so this is how long blogger hasn't been working for me, I wrote a post about Ali Shalal Qaissi, the supposed individual behind the hood, being shocked in that infamous abu garib picture. I wrote the post on the tenth, I've since been unable to post until now, and convieniently enough, the whole story seems to have been Made up anyway. . So here I am still with nothing to post.

So promises all around that I'll get something up on here before the clock strikes midnight, and curses to Blogger, who will stop receiving my payments of unicorn farts and fairy dust for hosting my blog if they don't shape up.

Hope I haven't disappointed the fifteen or so people that regularly visit. (5 of which are likely me with different IP addresses)

Wednesday, March 08, 2006


Assparrot over at ParrotLine has cast the gauntlet.

1. Name three bloggers who are totally stuck up?
The insufferable Raven at And rightly so!, who consistently dismisses even those who have mild disagreements or differences with her as "freaks" and "idiots". Little Green Arseholes for the one, the only, Chazmo, who somehow manages to be simultaneously stuck up and classless. Let's not forget Atrios, actually, let's.

2. What are you're three fave movies of all time?
American Psycho, Coed Assbangers 3 (sorry parrot, I thought the frame positioning for the anal scenes to be too derivative in the fourth), Vacuuming completely nude in paradise.

3. If you were stranded on a dessert island what three records would you want their?
Holy fundamental spelling issues batman! Three copies of Pat Boone's: In a metal mood. (Never heard it but clearly it's awesome)

4. What three places have you lived in?
Vancouver Island, The Island and the rather large rock off the coast of Vancouver.

4.What three places did you visits?
West Edmonton Mall (Yay for capitalism!), Jamaica (almost died like 7 different ways there), Japan (in my dreams.)

5. If you could live in a abroad country whath three would it be?
Japan! Aren't you listening? Iraq (I'm a freak, I know). And a third place tie between Vietnam and France.

6. Name tehree things Hilarly Clinton would have to do to earn you're vote four PRES of the U.S?
Wow, that's the spelling equivalent of an Ebola outbreak. I dislike Hillary so intensely that she would have to break out the kneepads and give me the kind of beejer she should have given to Billy boy to keep him from getting in the ass-chasing mess he found himself in. Two more eh? Ok, well lick the balls while she's down there, also, develop an incurable disease one day after being sworn in and die, allowing her minority vice president to take the throne. (I don't care if (s)he's Black, gay or Mexican, I just want to see the GOP head explosions.)

76. What three memebers of the 'opposite" sex would you like to stick in an elevator?
Marie Jon', Ben "please don't touch my penis, it makes me uncomfortable" Shapiro and the one, the only Ron Jeremy. (Not willing to look that last one up at work for a link.)

I smell sitcom folks!

8. You're three fave books are?
People read books still? No way, here let me warm up your 8-track player for you there buddy.

9. Thrree cool teachers?
Ms. Hama, high school psyche teacher, Mr. Catherall, who took my questions about hallucinogenic mushrooms seriously and answered, and vice principal Rawlins, who let me argue my way out of nearly every punishment I had coming to me.

10. Three lame teachers?
Mr. "Nothing you do counts unless you wear the kind of gym shorts that let me look at your young package" Stephanik and Mr."I can smell marijuana from a fucking mile away, even with the flu" Barry. I'm working from memory here, so I have no third...

11. 3 things that will rule about high school?
What, like future highschools? All education administered via syringe, One piece silver jumpsuit school uniforms and soylent green made from detention students.

12. Three things that will sux about high school?
See above.

13. Three bolggers who it would be cool to hang out with?
T3h aw3s0m3, t3h l4m3. Also Billmon and Brad R... Maybe the rude pundit.

14. What three embarissing things did you do?
Almost anything I did to attract girls then easily qualifies for all three.

15. Tag three more bloggers with tihs quiz?
Gavin, Butchie Boy, and Whoever it was that pranked the fuck out of Scott Stapp.

Monday, March 06, 2006

Give me a kiss to build a dream on...

Don't ask, just click.

A little break from all the gloom and doom. A very interesting web app that attempts to create a custom "dream" for you. Getting back to the gloom and doom: words like terrorist and bomb can create some very powerful imagery. Then again, so did "pears".

I had the pear dream again. (Ultra obscure Kids in the Hall reference.)

Update to last post.

"This is what we were trained to do, and this is what we did. I was not the only one; there were many others hitting them."

A day after my post on the kind of people that are being held in detention in the "War on terror", CBS ran a story that tries to make sense of detainee deaths while in custody.

Another point I've brought up repeatedly when arguing these sorts of points with war supporters is that when you tell your soldiers that the Geneva conventions do not apply, and when you fail to set specific rules about what is tolerable and not tolerable, you get this:
Their shackled hands, according to Brand, were at about eye level. The point of chaining them to the ceiling, Brand says, was to keep the detainees awake by not letting them lie down and sleep.

Interrogators wanted the prisoners softened up.

Asked what the longest period of time Brand saw a detainee chained like that, Brand says, "Probably about two days."

"Two days? Without a break?" Pelley asked.

"Without a break," Brand replied.


Brand says something else was thought to be acceptable in the prison: a brutal way of controlling prisoners – a knee to the common peroneal nerve in the leg, a strike with so much force behind it that the prisoner would lose muscle control and collapse in pain.

Brand says he vaguely remembers giving knee strikes to Habibullah.

How did the detainee react to that?

"The same way everybody else did. I mean he would scream out 'Allah, Allah, Allah'; sometimes his legs would buckle and sometimes it wouldn’t," Brand explained.

It wasn't only Willie Brand. A confidential report by the Army’s criminal investigation division accuses dozens of soldiers of abuse, including "slamming [a prisoner] into walls [and a] table," "forcing water into his mouth until he could not breathe," giving "kicks to the groin" and once, according to the report, a soldier "threatened to rape a male detainee." Soldiers even earned nicknames including "King of Torture" and "Knee of Death."


The military medical examiner says Dilawar’s legs were pulpified. Both autopsy reports were marked "homicide." But the Army spokesman in Afghanistan told the media that both men had died of natural causes.


There was a lot the Red Cross didn’t know. Medical experts say that Dilawar’s injuries were so severe that, if he had lived, both his legs would have required amputation. Even worse, one soldier testified that most of the interrogators thought Dilawar had been arrested only because he was in the wrong place at the wrong time. They had come to believe he was just a cab driver.

Sound like anyone we know? Maybe an apple seller or a farmer perhaps?

Well, this is a grand tragedy, but certainly this isn't the fault of the generals and leaders... I mean, it's not like they knew what the hell was going on right?
"Several of my leaders knew because we had them like that, you know, there was probably one or two like that any given day. And we didn’t change the procedure if someone came through whether they were a colonel or a general, we left them the same. They seen (sic) what was going on there," Beiring answered.

Pelley asked Brand if other leaders knew what was going on.

Gen. Daniel McNeill, the top officer in Afghanistan, said “we are not chaining people to the ceilings.”

Brand disagreed. "Well, he’s lying obviously. I mean because we were doing it on a daily basis," he says.

I really hate to just copy and paste without comment, but this is one of those stories that pretty much stands for itself. Create the mess and then let the trigger men catch the heat. Sacrifice the grunts to save the brass.

But they get lemon chicken and fruit loops right?

Saturday, March 04, 2006

America, meet your "terrorists".

I'm in the midst of writing a much longer and more involved post for later today or tomorrow, but I saw this story come off the wire and just had to say something about it.

I don't know how many dozens of times I've heard a Bush apologist say something along the lines of "Everyone in Gitmo is a terrorist, and they deserve to be there, besides, it's not that bad at all. They get lemon chicken..."

I think we can go past the "It's not that bad" excuse, not only because of the torture and the hunger strikes and the bloody and painful forced feedings but simply because it's a jail. People are housed there in cages, kept away from their homes and families, with no personal freedom. It's nearly the worst thing the system can come up with to do with domestic criminals, so it's probably pretty high up there on the list of nasty things that can be done to terrorists.

Now, with the release of new documents and names, we can begin pulling apart the other rationale. I've long contended that it's only natural that the military would be a little overzealous in deciding who is and who isn't a terrorist in a war zone filled with potentials, I don't blame them for that.

What I do take issue with is that the American government simply rounds these people up and puts them away somewhere convenient, never informing them of their charge, and simply forgets about them. I'm obviously not saying that no one being detained right now is affiliated with Al Quaida, but I believe that a great many, perhaps the majority of prisoners held are not "enemy combatants" and are likely no threat at all. Excepting, of course, the threat created when a friend or family member of one of these detainees decides that America is the devil for taking this farmer or that student away under suspicion of being involved with "them".

From an apple seller who says he was kidnapped to be a cook's helper for the taliban, a group he says he had never even heard of before he was kidnapped:
"I never had a weapon. I never carried a weapon with me and I've never been in any kind of armed fight,"

The evidence against others can seem flimsy. In at least one case, it appears to include only the fact that the suspect wore a Casio watch _ a brand allegedly favored by terrorists for use as bomb timers.

Shah, a farmer who said he had never left his village before being arrested because he wore an olive drab jacket.

"I was just walking in the street and I was captured," Shah said. "The next thing I found out is that I am sitting here."

Are these the kinds of terrorists that you picture in your mind's eye when Bush stands behind that podium and promises to keep this war going for as long as he sees fit, an apple seller and a farmer?

I was having trouble thinking of a way to end this, but I'll go back to that apple vendor, whose fate is (as the article notes) completely unknown as he was not named in the transcript, I think he's got a good handle on it.

"I always knew America as a democratic country and always heard positive things about America," he told the tribunal. "I believe that after 9/11 America became very aggressive and that's probably the only reason I'm here."

Update: More from the post on this Here.

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

What's it gonna take?

A simple question, how far will the Iraq debacle disintegrate before all the pro war drum beaters start to shut up and listen to the people who haven't been wrong about nearly everything for the last 6 years?

As the death toll rolls on past 350 for this week, Bush will be visiting India to try and sell a nuclear power deal. In doing so, I find myself wondering if he'll have a chance to get a glimpse at the more impoverished areas of India. The kind of unfathomable poverty that us westerners simply do not understand or register as existing in a civilized country. The funny thing is that India's going through a supposed economic boom, fuelled by tech industries and outsourcing, but the income disparity is brutal; the same kind of vast divide that is widening in America as we speak.

I wonder if he'll see one of the families that live their entire life in a garbage dump, collecting scraps of material to sell for the ten dollars or less a week they live on, only minutes after passing a few of India's new economic winners. I also wonder if Bush will ask himself if his 250 billion dollar war in Iraq could have been money well spent elsewhere, especially now as his poll numbers waver into the low thirties and his war of choice degenerates further.

I'm a realist, so I doubt it. I don't even really think Bush makes those connections anymore. If he ever did...