Sunday, December 31, 2006

Person Called Saddam Shows Fear

"Ali Al Massedy, the official Iraqi videographer who filmed Saddam's final moments at close range, said the despot was a picture of dread as the noose slipped around his neck.
"I saw fear, he was afraid," Mr Al Massedy said minutes after returning from the execution."

Person Called Saddam Defiant to the End

"In a final moment of defiance, the deposed Iraqi president refused a hood to cover his eyes.
By several accounts, Saddam was calm but scornful of his captors, engaging in a give-and-take with the crowd gathered to watch him die and insisting he was Iraq's saviour, not its tyrant and scourge.
One witness, national security adviser Mowaffak al-Rubaie, told The New York Times one of the Iraqi guards shouted at Saddam: "You have destroyed us. You have killed us. You have made us live in destitution."
"I have saved you from destitution and misery and destroyed your enemies, the Persians and Americans," Saddam responded, al-Rubaie told the Times.
"God damn you," the guard said.
"God damn you," responded Saddam."

Sunnis Vow Revenge

"The Persians have killed him. I can't believe it. By God, we will take revenge," said a man from the northern city of Mosul, using a term employed by some Sunnis to describe Shi'ites who share their faith with non-Arab Persian-speaking Iran.
"All we can do now is take it out against the Americans and the government," said another mourner who paused by the tomb in a marble-floored mosque hall in Awja, near the city of Tikrit. A portrait of a smiling Saddam wearing his trademark fedora hat was propped up in a chair."

No Sign of Sunni Revenge

"There was no sign of a feared Sunni uprising in retaliation for the execution, and the bloodshed from civil warfare was not far off the daily average -- 92 from bombings and death squads."

Whether there will be a uptick in resistance attacks on americans or not because of the Saddam stage play is any body's guess. Following a rigged trial with a hurry -up show execution and midnight burial on the Muslim holy day of Eid seems to be more provocation, however. For those inclined to widen this conflict this would be a perfect opportunity to pull a false flag event and blame the grieving mourners.

Friday, December 29, 2006

Somebody They Claim Is Saddam Possibly Put To Death

A curious thing happened after Saddam Hussein was purportedly captured three years ago. After huge pressure was put on americans by the Russians, Saddam's wife, Sajida Heiralla Tuffah, was allowed to see him in captivity in Qatar.

"Well, you could have heard a pin drop all the way across Qatar. Sajida arrived from Syria with her official escort Sheikh Hamad Al-Tani, and then entered the prison, emerging only moments later pink with rage and shouting, "This is not my husband but his double. Where is my husband? Take me to my husband".
American officials rushed forward to shield Mrs Saddam from perplexed Russian observers, trying to insist that Saddam had changed a lot while in custody and she probably didn't recognise him. This was certainly not the best way to handle the Iraqi President's wife. "You think I do not know my husband?" Sajida shouted furiously, "I was married to the man for more than twenty-five years!" Then she stormed off, never to return.
This remarkable confrontation was reported by Pravda and four other newspapers in the east between 13 and 17 April, but the New York Times and others made damn sure you didn't read or hear about it in the west

Before the invasion and occupation it was well known and taken as fact that Saddam employed a bunch of look - alikes as a precaution to fool his enemies. This is Time from Oct. 7, 2002:
"A German television network reported that, as a security precaution, Saddam Hussein is using at least three doubles to make public appearances for him. The network, ZDF, based its findings on a study by a forensic pathologist who examined 450 photographs and video clips of the Iraqi President. The Saddam-alikes apparently can be spotted only through minor differences in their features and mannerisms--they may even have been surgically altered to resemble the Iraqi leader. How dependent is Saddam on these doppelgangers? The study turned up only one public appearance by the real Saddam since 1998."

When you think about the entire Iraqi spectacle and connect the dots rather than just pay attention to each propaganda stunt as it's presented to us, it becomes a vast dog and pony show. We were lied into this unholy shitheap and they never stopped lying because if they told the truth just once their whole sorry mess would unravel. Their pretend antics are presented as achievements and milestones - toppling that statue, killing his piglatin sons Ouday and Quasay, multiple elections and killing Zarqawi numerous times - are boffo extravaganzas meant to amaze us and make us think there's progress being made. Each and every one of them is suspicious as hell or an outright fraud and the most deceptive is the capture of Saddam.

Think about it. He was a multi billionaire and a player on the world stage for decades. He was a business partner and one time ally of Bushco. When the whistle blew in September 2002 to signal the media's Iraq Invasion Saturation Coverage, Saddam had months to prepare a somewhat more agreeable existance than living in a dirthole.

And then there was the 'capture' itself. Like all staged psy ops we were handed the official story and MSM outlets almost hyperventilated when reporting it. We were expected to believe that Saddam Hussein, who was meticulous in personal grooming and kept his hair short since he was young, would suddenly look like a deranged, unkempt tramp. No journalists were there and we're expected to believe known liars about the details. There's that little thing about the Kurds that doesn't fit in the initial narrative. And they have a different growing season over there - their dates ripen in December, apparently.

There's so much more wrong with this stage play. But the most damning evidence that exposes this fraud is the fact that our manipulators allowed the doppelganger to open his mouth in court. Giving his double plenty of plastic surgery to make him look like Saddam was a piece of cake. Rearranging his jaw and fixing his teeth to resemble the original immaculate set of choppers couldn't be done because he needed to be coached in sounding like the original and massive mouth surgery would have taken a long time, apparently. So they went with the teeth they had rather than the teeth the wished they had. Saddam had a normal overbite with a straight set, the imposter has/had an underbite with ragged lower teeth.
I suppose only a DNA test would expose it all. I wouldn't hold my breath.

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Archbishop Ussher Works At The Park Service

How old is the Grand Canyon? Don't ask. Don't offend the fundies.

"Grand Canyon National Park is not permitted to give an official estimate of the geologic age of its principal feature, due to pressure from Bush administration appointees. Despite promising a prompt review of its approval for a book claiming the Grand Canyon was created by Noah's flood rather than by geologic forces, more than three years later no review has ever been done and the book remains on sale at the park, according to documents released today by Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility (PEER)."

So the book, titled 'Grand Canyon, a Different View' is still on sale at the park bookstore due to pressure from bushista bible thumpers. I don't know about you, but those bookstores at the parks are special places to me, where you go to find materials to help enrich your wonderful experience at intensely beautiful places. We don't need Xtian fairy tales for that. What's next, gag orders for the Park Rangers?

“As one park geologist said, this is equivalent of Yellowstone National Park selling a book entitled Geysers of Old Faithful: Nostrils of Satan.”

Who Knew You Could Cheat At Chess?

Some loser Indian guy decided to get instructions on what to do from accomplices by using wireless transmission:

"Umakant Sharma was caught during a "random check" in a New Delhi tournament on 4 December, Information Week reports. The headset was sewn into a cap which he "typically pulled down over his ears". The All India Chess Federation (AICF) found Sharma's accomplices had used a computer to calculate moves and had transmitted the recommendations to him via said headset."

Sort of like this loser:

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Thursday, December 28, 2006

When the Flags are Half - Mast...

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I'll be thinking about our country all month, not this man. Amid all the gushy effort to canonize Ford we have to remember the one act that led directly to the predicament we're in today - he pardoned the most corrupt politician ever seen on the national stage up to that time. By not allowing Nixon to meet his just due as a despicable war criminal, he left the door wide open for a tsunami of loathsome pricks to steal our government just a few years later.

Killing Sadr Aide Can Have Ugly Consequences

"Al Sadr officials said US forces stormed Al Amiri's home at dawn and killed him in front of his wife and children. They said Al Amiri was a lawyer who headed a charity for orphans and the poor. ."

Hundreds are slaughtered in Iraq on a daily basis but this senseless death in Najaf, a city of about a million, has explosive potential. This guy was a senior aide to Moqtada al-Sadr, the leading Shiite cleric who's the real power in southern Iraq. He commands a potent military force that for the most part hasn't fought the occupiers. At least not yet.

As usual the american military is trying to lie it's way around this.
"U.S. military spokesman Lieutenant Colonel Christopher Garver categorically denied accusations by the Sadrist official that U.S. forces were involved, saying: "We did not conduct any operations in Najaf."
Garver is the sack of shit who tried to lie about the slaughter of innocents near Baghdad on December 8. That mission was a glorious american air strike on crowded apartments.

However, plenty of news reports say the raid was a joint effort of americans and Iraqis and it was an american who killed him:
"In a statement, the U.S. military said Iraqi and American forces were trying to detain Al-Amiri, and only shot him when he pointed an assault rifle at an Iraqi soldier."

Finding out that the US military is involved in gratuitous murder isn't news, nor is it shocking that they lie to our faces about it. Taken separately these incidents are bad enough but when looked at together it's a policy of provocation. Like the rush to hang Saddam (or one of his doubles), killing Sadr's lawyer is meant to incite hatred, to maintain the level of fear and instigate the violence that justifies the occupation.
Under the occupation Najaf province was relatively peaceful but the american military may just get their wish.

Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Call It What It Really Is

I have no qualms about labelling the monstrous war criminals in Washington what they really are - fascists. Too many people dance around the fact that our government has been taken over by venal corporate scumbags headed by a petty, autocratic pissant who in saner times would be medicated and under close supervision.

"Think what it means as the new year approaches. The nation is at war on two fronts, it's likely more ahead are contemplated by some in the administration, no substantive effort is being made to change course, and the condition at home is a relentless march toward becoming a full-blown national security police state we're already perilously close to. It's because the neocon-dominated Bush administration is reckless in ambition, out-of-control in policy, and the embodiment of a relentless and ruthless "weapon of mass destruction" unleashed on all humanity in its way.

It's underpinned by an extremist ideology based on rule by savage capitalism that's frighteningly close to and borders on the tipping edge of the classic definition of fascism combining corporatism with strong elements of patriotism and nationalism, a claimed messianic Almighty-directed and blessed mission, and characterized by authoritarian rule backed by the iron fist of militarism and 'homeland security" enforcers, illegally spying on everyone, and intolerant of dissent and opposition in an age where the law is what the chief executive says it is and all semblance of checks and balances no longer exist. In a word - despotism, but cloaked in the deceptive rhetoric of a modern democracy falsely claiming to serve the needs of all its people."

Take a Look at the January Esquire Cover

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Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Time To Rescue Somalia's Resources From The Somalis

After years of increased military aid to Ethiopia, a largely christian country, I guess it was time to cut them loose in service to the globalists. Ethiopia is in the process of invading Somalia with the full backing of the war criminals in Washington.

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It was only a matter of time. Back in the early 90s the oil giants were drooling over the possibility of tapping into Somalia's untapped oil fields but agreements with pro-U.S. President Mohamed Siad Barre fell apart when he was booted out by local warlords. Remember Blackhawk Down? That fiasco in Mogadishu when 18 US rangers were killed when a helicopter crashed and there was furious fighting throughout the city? It was an aborted attempt to make the country safe for corporate profits by muscling in on the local chieftains. Oh yeah - around 1000 Somalis were killed, something that's usually left out of the official narrative.

Flash forward to this past year and again the stage was being set for foreign intervention and takeover. This time the US is backing the warlords who are supposedly battling with, you guessed it, 'Al Qaeda' style islamists. What the UN recognizes as the government in Somalia is laughed at by the country's 10 million people:

"What the UN calls a government has not been legally elected by the Somali public. It is merely an idiosyncratic selection of participants, belonging to--but not actually representing--different clans, from the Djibouti conference bazaar, whose protracted proceedings were dominated by ex-ministers of the discredited regime of the corrupt dictator General Mohammed Siyad Barre—many of whom Somalis accuse of war crimes."

The islamists are fronted by what's called the IUC or Union of Islamic Courts. Their efforts this year to finally govern their impovershed country were a mixed bag, but generally positive in helping their countrymen. After marginalizing the warlords they restored law and order in Mogadishu, reopened air and sea ports and dismantled military checkpoints. The islamic courts therefore threatened to become the government that the Somalis needed and wanted but what the fascists couldn't allow. Hence the green light for this new war. Bullshit propaganda is piling high and deep however, as the spinmeisters are trying desperately to paint it all in terms of 'fighting terrorism'. The state department wants to play the innocent bystander:

"On Tuesday, a day after an Ethiopian jet strafed the airport in Mogadishu, the capital, the State Department issued internal guidance to staff members, instructing officials to play down the invasion in public statements.
“The press must not be allowed to make this about Ethiopia, or Ethiopia violating the territorial integrity of Somalia,” the guidance said."

I think geography also has a lot to do with this conflict. Somalia is very strategically located on the Horn of Africa. Control it and Yemen and you control the Gulf of Aden and the Red Sea.

This almost seems exactly like what our fascists were up to in Afghanistan, only without the profitable opium trade. There they backed warlords against the islamist Taliban but are in the process of getting their asses kicked. But what does Ethiopia and their allies the warlords hope to gain from being america's proxy in this new front in the globalists' Endless War? My guess is they'll sell Somalia to the highest bidder, namely the US and it's corporate buddies. Of course the Somali people will fight long and hard against the invasion and to keep their former corrupt masters from returning to power.

Monday, December 25, 2006

The Christmas Truce of 1914

Sunday, December 24, 2006

Chaos by Design

by M. Shahid Alam

"The war that Western powers--primarily US, Israel and Britain--began against the Islamic world after September 11, 2001, is about to enter a new more dangerous phase as their early plans for 'changing the map of the Middle East' have begun to unravel with unintended consequences.
Codenamed 'the war against terror,' the imperialist war against the Middle East was fueled primarily by US and Israeli ambitions. Britain's participation is mostly a sideshow. US and Israel have convergent aims in the region. The US seeks to deepen its control over the region's oil. Israel wants to create regional conditions that will allow it to complete the ethnic cleansing of Palestinians.
As a first step, both objectives would be served by removing four regimes--in Iran, Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan--that still resisted US and Israeli ambitions in the region. Once these regimes had been removed, the US and Israel would carry the war into Egypt, Saudi Arabia and Pakistan, to dismember them into smaller, weaker client states.

Iraq and Afghanistan were chosen as the first targets--the easy points of entry into the war."

Of course this plan was in place for some time. After the Soviet Union imploded the US had to invent it's next boogeyman enemy to keep the money flowing into corporate coffers via the "war" scam. The US has to have war. War on drugs. The cold war. The long war. War is profitable so the fascists create the conditions necessary for it to happen.

It's all out in the public domain. The fascists are very up front with their intentions from the Project For a New American Century and their aching desire for a new Pearl Harbor to Kindasleazy Rice and her birth pangs of a new middle east. It's just their actions that are secret and well disguised.

9/11 was the kickoff in their Big Game. It was meant to firmly establish Muslims as the new Commie menace that we have to war with. Invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq were planned for years and were undertaken after blaming nebulous muslim patsies for what they themselves did. The fascists' plan is a step by step takeover of the world's resources by destabilization and endless war, but they indeed hit some snags in the last year. Central asian 'Stans' no longer welcomed US parasitical interests after the post 9/11 love affair. Iran proved to be a stronger chess player and moved to bolster it's international ties. Israel got humiliated by Hezbullah. The largest arms supply dump in Iraq was destroyed in an attack a couple months ago. Schemes to balkanize the whole region seem to have been put on hold.

However the fascists always have plans B,C and so on. For the moment it appears that their strategy is to foment this Sunni vs Shiite sectarian conflict. Maybe their all out war with Syria and Iran was put on a back burner for awhile but again the US is adding strike forces to the Persian Gulf. I'd expect them to pull another huge false flag attack at any time to prop up flagging support for their phony war on whatever. In any case plans and timeline may have to be altered, but not their stated agenda.

Contract On Christmas

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newt gingrich as Santa

seen at Rising Hegemon

Saturday, December 23, 2006

The Circle Jerks

Funny things these internets. We're actually just in the infancy of the computer age, aren't we? Widespread online activity only really got going about ten years ago so we're smack dab in an evolving process.

I know that a lot of internet users, especially younger people, just use the tubes to send email, shmooze and chat, maybe start a blog and download music. I'll bet the online vendors are mopping up this holiday season. My interests lie in news, science, politics and opinion. I don't know about you, but I've seen a curious phenomena evolve in the last several years and I think it's emblematic of politics at large, and could point towards what we can expect later. The 'right wing' blogosphere bubble.

It's not really a choice between left and right as I think those terms are meaningless now. The political arena is shaping up to be a struggle between constitutionalists and authoritarians that transcends left and right.

The bubble exists as a squawking megaphone for top down authoritarians with jackboots on their xmas wishlist. It serves as a strident adjunct to the corporate media line. We all hyperlink in our blogs; the kids in the bubble link a lot to each other. It's been called an echo chamber for good reason. It's got a pack mentality and those blogs - Malkin, little green fascists, Powerline and the others are quick to repeat what they think represents a validation of their brownshirted outlook - pubbies represent good, dems bad and the snarling muslim barbarians are out to get us but only the bubble knows it. In other words stagnant, simplistic and xenophobic, and increasingly isolated. That sure describes their war hero president.

Here's an example. Using memeorandum which tracks hot blog topics I see that the usual suspects are all chasing what seemed to be a hot story for them that they could spin into a dems = bad zinger. A supposed 'al qaeda' terrorist takes credit for the democratic win in the elections in a video which was released a couple days ago. Stop the presses! See, this proves the dems are in bed with our enemies! Spineless libs anyway.

I looked into all the big news sites and didn't find one peep about this video, let alone their shrill conclusion. Not one reference. It turns out that every one of the bubble's sweating denizens linked to the same ABC Blotter entry by Brian Ross that's basically a standard yawn inspiring piece of propaganda. They just love to sniff out these supposed threats and then invent reasons to smear anybody they consider their political enemies. Go take a look at one or two of them and gaze in wonder as the commenters sieg heil.

I think this happens all the time. It serves to buttress their righteousness in the phony us against them paradigm that Codpiece laid out after 9/11. But a lot of dead-from-the-neck-up Bush supporters who are also probable Faux© viewers hang on to this crap for dear life. They decided to follow their batshit insane Precious Leader over the cliff so they constantly need that comforting reinforcement. I think there's going to be a showdown sometime in the near future as these crazed wingnuts rally to the fascists when the last nail in our republic's coffin is hammered, but Chris Bowers at MyDD has a more optimistic outlook:
"Conservative bloggers continue to act as though they are simply a supplement to the existing pundit class, without any need to converse with those operating outside of a small social bubble or any need to engage people within the new structure of the public sphere. In the formulation of Stirling Newberry, they view themselves existing on top of a pyramid rather than in the middle of a sphere. At least when it comes to the national blogosphere, liberals are leaving conservatives in the dust. By comparison, conservatives seem all too happy to continue to cogitate from atop their lofty and increasingly irrelevant perch. That's fine by me. I hope some things never change."

Friday, December 22, 2006

Last Minute Gift

Out of your mind trying to find a present for that incredibly hard-to-please guy in your life?
Relax. Get him an out of this world


"Stands 50 inches tall, has buzzing, bleeping open mouth!"

Thursday, December 21, 2006

Why is the US in Iraq?

The pentagon came out with a new report called "Measuring Stability and Security in Iraq". It's first paragraph states:
"The goal of U.S. engagement in Iraq is a
united, stable, democratic, and secure
nation, where Iraqis have the institutions and
resources they need to govern themselves
and to provide security for their country
Despite the lofty opening pronouncement the report goes on to categorize Codpiece's nightmarish catastrophe, although downplaying the magnitude. Almost all media outlets at least grudgingly accept the fact that Iraq is fast becoming a bloody killing zone where a million and a half of it's citizens have already fled the country and 100,000 more leave every month. Why is the reality of Iraq so different from the fuzzy stated mission?

Maybe Iraq today isn't just a problem that spiralled out of control by poor planning. Maybe all those mistakes and screwups after the invasion didn't just happen by chance. It's possible that there wasn't any "bad intelligence" that "misled" the administration in the first place. Maybe the Iraq we see today is precisely what our overlords had planned from the beginning.

Decisions were made right from the opening gun that ensured there were going to be massive problems. Infrastructure was obliterated and left to rot in disrepair. The US disbanded the Iraqi army and left them to organize the resistance. At least 250,000 tons of ordnance was deliberately left unguarded and was carried away by looters. Torture at places like Abu Ghraib wasn't just a few bad apples:
"Go past the executive summaries and press releases, however, and a careful reading of the reports reveals a different story. The devastating scandal of Abu Ghraib wasn't a failure of implementation, as Rice and other administration defenders have admitted. It was a direct--and predictable--consequence of a policy, hatched at the highest levels of the administration."
From the beginning the Bushistas activated a favored institution, familiar from years gone by and even implemented by the same criminals who formed them the first time in Central America - roving death squads. Add the assassinations, the false flag bombings, destruction of entire cities, shortages, and on and on. We have to realize that this consistent pattern of vicious criminality isn't just an accident - it was planned.

Corporate media isn't going to ever address this. All we'll see from them is effort to legitimize the crime and distract us with missing hikers and fallen beauty pageant winners. When they do cover the Iraqi shitheap it's done in a way to narrow the parameters of discussion. A favorite tactic going back to Vietnam. Instead of asking the obvious big picture questions they'll have a poll like this one from ABC:

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or this from CBS:

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Whatever the hell succeed means at this point.

If we're going to believe that our miserable quagmire was planned we have to put ourselves in the fascists' shoes and determine what we would have done differently. That's pretty easy - leaving the infrastructure alone then improving it, giving far more initial effort to integrate the various political and religious entities, securing the borders and those ammo dumps, observing strict oversight on contractors, delivering massive aid to the people. Of course this is assuming we had any goddamn right to do what we did in the first place.

But the biggest question of all is - why did the US invade Iraq? After all, the stated reasons were all huge lies, every one of them.
With an almost four year track record to observe I think the answer is obvious. The complete and utter disintegration of a once proud and prosperous Arab neighbor of Israel. The theft of natural resources and the theft of our tax money. Endless civil strife to ensure destruction. Permanent presence in the heart of those resources to extend the Empire's reach.
When you think about results like that, maybe Codpiece really did believe he did a good job back then.

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Happy Winter Solstice

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Ten Muslim Innovations

All indications are that we'll be bombarded with year end top ten lists like we always do. I'll join the party, from

1. Coffee
The story goes that an Arab named Khalid was tending his goats in the Kaffa region of southern Ethiopia, when he noticed hi s animals became livelier after eating a certain berry. He boiled the berries to make the first coffee. Certainly the first record of the drink is of beans exported from Ethiopia to Yemen where Sufis drank it to stay awake all night to pray on special occasions. By the late 15th century it had arrived in Mecca and Turkey from where it made its way to Venice in 1645. It was brought to England in 1650 by a Turk named Pasqua Rosee who opened the first coffee house in Lombard Street in the City of London . The Arabic qahwa became the Turkish kahve then the Italian caffé and then English coffee.

2. Chess
A form of chess was played in ancient India but the game was developed into the form we know it today in Persia. From there i t spread westward to Europe - where it was introduced by the Moors in Spain in the 10th century - and eastward as far as Japan. The word rook comes from the Persian rukh, which means chariot.

3. Parachute
A thousand years before the Wright brothers a Muslim poet, astronomer, musician and engineer named Abbas ibn Firnas made several attempts to construct a flying machine. In 852 he jumped from the minaret of the Grand Mosque in Cordoba using a loose cloak stiffened with wooden struts. He hoped to glide like a bird. He didn't. But the cloak slowed his fall, creating what is thought to be the first parachute, and leaving him with only minor injuries. In 875, aged 70, having perfected a machine of silk and eagles' feathers he tried again, jumping from a mountain. He flew to a significant height and stayed aloft for ten minutes but crashed on landing - concluding, correctly, that it was because he had not given his device a tail so it would stall on landing. Baghdad international airport and a crater on the Moon are named after him.

4. Shampoo
Washing and bathing are religious requirements for Muslims, which is perhaps why they perfected the recipe for soap which we still use today. The ancient Egyptians had soap of a kind, as did the Romans who used it more as a pomade. But it was the Arabs who combined vegetable oils with sodium hydroxide and aromatics such as thyme oil. One of the Crusaders' most striking characteristics, to Arab nostrils, was that they did not wash. Shampoo was introduced to England by a Muslim who opened Mahomed's Indian Vapour Baths on Brighton seafront in 1759 and was appointed Shampooing Surgeon to Kings George IV and William IV.

5. Shaft
The crank-shaft is a device which translates rotary into linear motion and is central to much of the machinery in the modern world, not least the internal combustion engine. One of the most important mechanical inventions in the history of humankind, it was created by an ingenious Muslim engineer called al-Jazari to raise water for irrigation. His 1206 Book of Knowledge of Ingenious Mechanical Devices shows he also invented or refined the use of valves and pistons, devised some of the first mechanical clocks driven by water and weights, and was the father of robotics. Among his 50 other inventions was the combination lock.

6. Surgery
Many modern surgical instruments are of exactly the same design as those devised in the 10th century by a Muslim surgeon called al-Zahrawi. His scalpels, bone saws, forceps, fine scissors for eye surgery and many of the 200 instruments he devised are recognisable to a modern surgeon. It was he who discovered that catgut used for internal stitches dissolves away naturally (a discovery he made when his monkey ate his lute strings) and that it can be also used to make medicine capsules. In the 13th century, another Muslim medic named Ibn Nafis described the circulation of the blood, 300 years before William Harvey discovered it. Muslims doctors also invented anaesthetics of opium and alcohol mixes and developed hollow needles to suck cataracts from eyes in a technique still used today.

7. Windmill
The windmill was invented in 634 for a Persian caliph and was used to grind corn and draw up water for irrigation. In the vast deserts of Arabia, when the seasonal streams ran dry, the only source of power was the wind which blew steadily from one direction for months. Mills had six or 12 sails covered in fabric or palm leaves. It was 500 years before the first windmill was seen in Europe.

8. Paychecks
The modern cheque comes from the Arabic saqq, a written vow to pay for goods when they were delivered, to avoid money having to be transported across dangerous terrain. In the 9th century, a Muslim businessman could cash a cheque in China drawn on his bank in Baghdad.

9. Fountain pen
The fountain pen was invented for the Sultan of Egypt in 953 after he demanded a pen which would not stain his hands or clothes. It held ink in a reservoir and, as with modern pens, fed ink to the nib by a combination of gravity and capillary action.

10. Carpets
Carpets were regarded as part of Paradise by medieval Muslims, thanks to their advanced weaving techniques, new tinctures from Islamic chemistry and highly developed sense of pattern and arabesque which were the basis of Islam's non-representational art. In contrast, Europe's floors were distinctly earthly, not to say earthy, until Arabian and Persian carpets were introduced. In England, as Erasmus recorded, floors were "covered in rushes, occasionally renewed, but so imperfectly that the bottom layer is left undisturbed, sometimes for 20 years, harbouring expectoration, vomiting, the leakage of dogs and men, ale droppings, scraps of fish, and other abominations not fit to be mentioned". Carpets, unsurprisingly, caught on quickly.

(Our term threshold, meaning the sill of a doorway, comes from medieval europe where a bar was placed on the floor to keep the chaff, or thresshen on the floor inside the house.)
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Monday, December 18, 2006

The Fake Crash Site At Shanksville

One of the many questionable aspects of the 9/11 myth to me has been the site in Pennsylvania where supposedly flight 93 went down. Witness after witness came forward scratching their heads saying there was no way a heavily laden, 150 foot long Boeing 757 with over 5,000 gallons of jet fuel would have made such a small hole and then just disappeared into the ground. With no debris to speak of. Here's a photoshopped representation of what happened (from Killtown):

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Here's the hole as it looked after the supposed crash:

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Remember this picture that someone took of the explosion plume?

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To me that doesn't look like it resulted from a crashed airliner. Rather it looks like ordnance, like these in Afghanistan:

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Or this in Iraq:

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Here's what a crashed airliner looks like:

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Also from Killtown, these eyewitness comments:

"There are just shreds of metal. The longest piece I saw was 2 feet long." - PittsburghLive (09/12/01)
"It just looked like somebody just
dropped a bunch of metal out of the sky," Miller said. - Houston Chronicle (09/08/02)
“The best I can describe it is if you’ve ever been to a commercial landfill. When it’s covered and you have papers flying around. You have papers blowing around and
bits and pieces of shredded metal." - PittsburghLive (09/14/01)
"If you would go down there,
it would look like a trash heap," said state police Capt. Frank Monaco. "There's nothing but tiny pieces of debris. It's just littered with small pieces." - Post-Gazette (09/12/01)
"Miller was among the very first to arrive after 10:06 on the magnificently sunny morning of September 11. He was stunned at how small the smoking crater looked, he says, "
like someone took a scrap truck, dug a 10-foot ditch and dumped all this trash into it." - Washington Post (05/12/02)

So where did this scrap metal come from? Possibly from a next door scrapyard.

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"Some visitors to the Flight 93 temporary memorial look across the abandoned strip mine in Stonycreek Township and mistake the pile of scrap they see for debris from the hijacked jetliner.The mangled heap of iron and steel actually belongs to Rollock Inc., a scrap metal business owned and managed by the father-and-son team of Tony and Chris Kordell of Bedford County.The property they purchased three years ago abuts the crash site, which lies just several yards beyond the perimeter of the Kordells' land." – Pittsburgh Live (09/11/02)"

Just sayin'.


We've had the new Blockbuster Total Access program for a month now. I've got to say it's a good success.

If a person enjoys movies at home along with a penchant for older flicks and offbeat titles, it would be hard to beat what BB offers. Because they're in a winner take all fight with Netflix the customer really gets his or her money's worth. For $17.99 I get three movies out at atime and can take the ones I've seen into the nearest BB outlet to use as coupons for free rentals, basically turning the account into six movies out at one time. Also when you bring the used title in they scan it to send the next one in your queue from the warehouse.

Doing it this way lets you rent the new flicks from the store while selecting old and obscure ones from their warehouse. We saw 19 movies in the first month this way. Less than one dollar a shot. Netflix offers a good service too with a huge library and a sharp website. I wish them well, but adios.

Has China Decided to Dump One Trillion US Dollars?

Normally I wouldn't give the Hal Turner show a minute of my time but he may be on to something here:

"According to this Senior source, China told the U.S. delegation they no longer have faith in U.S. Currency for several reasons:
1) The Federal Reserve Bank ceased publishing "M3" data in March, making it nearly impossible for anyone to know how much cash is being printed. China said this act made it impossible to tell how much a Dollar is worth.
2) The U.S. Dollar has lost upwards of thirty percent (30%) of its value against other foreign currencies in the recent past, meaning China has lost almost $300 Billion simply by holding U.S. Dollars in its reserves.
3) The U.S. has no plans whatsoever to reduce deficit spending or ability pay down any of its existing debt without printing money to pay it off.
For these reasons China has decided to implement an aggressive sell-off of U.S. Dollars before the rest of the world does so. China reportedly told the US delegation; "we are the largest holder of U.S. Currency and if the rest of the world unloads theirs before we unload ours, we will lose our shirts."

For one thing all the above reasons apparently are based on fact. Many countries around the world are shying away from the dollar, and a selloff would turn into a stampede for the exits. For another, half of Codpiece's cabinet was just in Beijing at what was called the Strategic Economic Dialogue with China, and by some accounts it didn't go well as China lectured the americans. Then again, it is the Hal Turner show.
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Sunday, December 17, 2006

US Could Face Catastrophic Military Defeat In Iraq

What does a failing empire do when it faces collapse? Why, start another war of course. Webster Tarpley discusses the very real threat of our entire 150,000 + army in Iraq being annihilated if Codpiece makes the wrong move.

"Amateurs talk strategy; professionals talk logistics." -- Gen. Omar Bradley
Washington, DC, December 16, 2005 -- The flawed assessment offered by the Baker-Hamilton report neglects a crucial aspect of the political-military situation of the US and other foreign armed forces in Iraq: the danger that the US army of occupation might be cut off, encircled, and annihilated as a fighting force over the next few months. This flaw in turn makes it easier for Baker-Hamilton to reject a priori the one rational response to the current reality, which is the extrication of US forces before it is too late. We do not need a new way forward in Iraq; we require a speedy way out of Iraq.

The real argument concerning Iraq has nothing to do with victory; the issue is now avoiding catastrophic military defeat for the US, in a form far worse than the Baker-Hamilton group has chosen to imagine. The looming specter is the worst of military cataclysms ­ a battle of annihilation on the model of the Romans at Cannae, L. Crassus at Carrhae, or of von Paulus at Stalingrad."

Saturday, December 16, 2006

Bush's Big Surge

So yesterday we read the daily carnage - Saturday: 76 Iraqis, 4 GIs Killed; 8 Iraqis Wounded. Every day it's like that now. You've got to wonder what's in store with Iraq, what the warmongers have planned for the near future. There's no harm in conjecture.

When Cheney was summoned to Riyadh three weeks ago it was to tell the US government in no uncertain terms that the Saudis are pissed. They don't like how the americans are being pressured to engage the Iranians and especially are enraged that Shiias are calling the shots in Bush's Iraqi satrapy. The Saudis are flexing their muscles and probably are calling the shots far more than we're told. They told the dark one they will support their brothers if the americans won't. Since Cheney got back things are going in a new direction. Worse.

Iraqi prime minister Maliki was told to hold a let's be friends reconciliation meeting yesterday and nobody showed up. I believe it was all for show anway and everybody knew it.

Codpiece wants to send more troops, estimates range from 20,000 to 70,000, into the bloody meatgrinder. Some reports claim it's to put down the Sunni insurgency. But if you consider the Saudi connection it's probably to instigate a war on Al-Sadr's Shiia Mahdi Army.
This would be bad news. It would also be bad news if new offences were undertaken against Saudis allies, but Bush wants to send the new forces anyway. There's a very real possibility of Iranian backed Shiias going into all out war with Saudi backed Sunnis with an increasingly vulnerable american army caught in the middle. There are no good choices for the american military in Iraq but Sockpuppet will make them anyway, doubling down on a busted flush.

After all, what does he and his cabal care? As Chris Floyd puts it:

" Meanwhile, the makers of the true atrocity, the great atrocity - the unprovoked, unsanctioned, unnecessary act of aggression responsible for all the mass Iraqi deaths in Ishaqi and across the land, all the dead and maimed Americans, all the ruin, all the senseless pain and suffering - will be making the rounds of sumptuous Christmas parties in the coming days. They'll be feasting and toasting, dancing and laughing, swathed in the pomps of wealth and power, forever secure against the consequences of the evil they have done."

Time's Person Of The Year - The Copout

Time magazine ran a poll for a while leading up to it's announcement of Person Of The Year. I was interested in this poll because the two leading personalities according to those who voted were Hugo Chavez and Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, with 35% and 21% respectively. So who did Time magazine choose as POTY? You.

Yeah, they decided to get funky as they sometimes do and choose a concept rather than a person. Their decision says a lot about how bloated, self referential and full of themselves they are. And I suspect the real reason that they didn't select one of the two leading choices that they offered was that it wouldn't look good for the fascists if Time's POTY was assasinated.

Friday, December 15, 2006

Samantha Bee Foxifies Al-Jazeera

They clearly needed a lesson to reach an american audience.

From Pocket Change to Bullion

New rules outlaw melting pennies, nickels for profit.

"WASHINGTON — People who melt pennies or nickels to profit from the jump in metals prices could face jail time and pay thousands of dollars in fines, according to new rules out Thursday.
Soaring metals prices mean that the value of the metal in pennies and nickels exceeds the face value of the coins. Based on current metals prices, the value of the metal in a nickel is now 6.99 cents, while the penny's metal is worth 1.12 cents, according to the U.S. Mint.
That has piqued concern among government officials that people will melt the coins to sell the metal, leading to potential shortages of pennies and nickels."

I wonder if it's illegal to do this now:

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Resistance is Feral

Over at Counterpunch Jason Hribal gives an overview of captive animal intransigence:

"The acts of resistance that often attract the most attention are violent forms. Arms are bitten off. Flesh is torn. Bones are crushed. Humans are killed. The most famous recent event occurred in 2002 in Las Vegas during a Siegfried and Roy show. Montecore, a 6 year veteran of stage, refused to lie down during a routine, and, when his trainer bristled, the white tiger clamped down on his arm. After being repeatedly hit on the head with a microphone, Montecore then grabbed him by the neck. His trainer would survive but only barely. Others have not been so lucky."

It doesn't take much to figure out why this happens. When I was growing up in the New York area I'd go to the Bronx Zoo on occasion. This was back in the 50s and 60s so the confinements were victorian and crude. The animals were plainly suffering in their cramped and spare captivity and would exhibit all kinds of mental and physical pathology. Some were very thin or fat, there were bald spots and sores, some seemed to be in a constant state of torpor or would act out their anguish with repeated movements over and over again because they went crazy. Lots of anti social and violent behavior. It was sickening.

"The most common forms of resistance, however, are those particularly unspectacular in their methods. Cheetahs who refuse to do anything. Tigers who ignore commands. Elephants who fake ignorance. Orcas who rebuff new tasks. Gorillas who break equipment. Chimpanzees who throw their shit ("scatological humor," as zoo officials call it) at visitors. One researcher marveled at how skillful the monkeys at the Los Angeles Zoo were at hitting visitors with "clods of earth" from great distances. Then there was Stuffie, the first chimp ever produced from artificial insemination. Shot to death in 1987 while attempting to escape, she was infamous at the Toledo Zoo for holding milk in her mouth for hours on end: waiting patiently until her trainers came close enough so that she could spit it out in their faces."

Even in the modern zoo environments that tout their progressive attitudes toward captivity the animals still get bored, lonely, restricted and are deprived of any control of their lives. In the acclaimed Oregon Coast Aquarium the otters repeat the same behavior back and forth for hours on end. These places are far better than the small dirty cells from fifty years ago. But it's still an unnatural existence. A lot of these parks and zoos pretend they're all about protection of species and education, but when it comes to money they're more concerned with propagation and entertainment. If the money grows tight it's spent on cosmetic improvements rather than on animal welfare, to draw in the paying customers.

I don't even want to talk about circuses.

It's easy to anthropomorphize confined animals and their response to a degraded existence. It seems like it's a natural tendency for authoritarian societies to confine and imprison, just like it's the natural response of free thinking people to demand a freer environment. It's no wonder the US has over 2.2 million people behind bars giving us the distinction of having the highest per capita incarceration in the world. The fascists will always automatically default to a prison mentality when faced with opposition. Thus our expeditionary forces in Iraq have dredged up the "strategic hamlet" program. Hence the new era of "free speech zones". Consequently we see the government awarding $400,000,000 to Halliburton to build concentration camps.

If we willingly decide to accept this fate, I wonder what animal behavior our response will resemble - the big cat who sleeps on the cold concrete for 20 hours a day that only gets up to eat what's thrown to him, or the monkeys who throw something of their own back the other way?

Thursday, December 14, 2006

People Despise Her War Criminal Husband And His Disaster, Laura Bush Blames The Media

Let the finger pointing and the blame game commence. Hit it, Pickles...

"NEW YORK Appearing on MSNBC this morning with Norah O’Donnell, Laura Bush blamed the media, when asked why only 21% of Americans, in a recent NBC poll, said they approved of her husband's Iraq policy.
“I do know that there are a lot of good things that are happening [in Iraq] that aren’t covered," she said. "And I think that the drum beat in the country from the media, from the only way people know what is happening unless they happen to have a loved one deployed there, is discouraging...."There are also good things going on that people don't have a chance to see....Schools that are being built. There are parts of country that are rebuilding....So I'd like to see the media give a more balanced view of it."

Got your good things right here, lady.
Thursday: 110 Iraqis, 1 GI Killed; 35 Iraqis Wounded, Dozens Kidnapped

"A mass kidnapping in the capital is the focus of news reports from Iraq today. At least 20 people, perhaps as many as 70 Iraqis, were kidnapped from a shopping district. The Dept. of Defense also reported on the death of an American soldier from non-combat related injuries; the December tally now stands at 49 GI deaths. And a British soldier was wounded when a roadside bomb blasted his patrol in Basra. Overall, 110 Iraqis were killed or found dead and 35 were wounded in violent attacks."

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I'm a cinephile. I like to watch movies. My tastes are eclectic but I try to prescreen selections to pick ones that appeal to me because of a general consensus that they're good, or there are certain actors involved, or they have certain style. Mrs. Lipstick and I rent them and watch at home; I haven't been in a movie theater in twenty years. There are so many on DVD now that sometimes it takes awhile to get around to some titles.

As it was for Transamerica which I watched last night. So much has been said about Felicity Huffman's performance that I'll just jump on the bandwagon and say that it's as good as it gets. Gender bending stories are common enough but it takes real acting chops to pull off a triple role - a woman playing a man turning into a woman. In this one it's done with deft poignancy as a vehicle to get to the heart of the matter - two people together on a physical and inner road trip of self discovery. It could have been easy to trivialize this topic and stumble with self parody, but never does.

A League of Ordinary Gentlemen is a good documentary about some Microsoft retirees who bought the ailing Professional Bowlers Association and their efforts to revitalize the sport. As with all good documentaries there isn't narration, the camera seems invisible as it follows the pro bowlers and it follows the tried and true buildup to a championship event. It starts off with a bang with great old footage and graphics but falters a bit while the principles are fleshed out. If they had stayed with the format used during the first fifteen minutes it would have been a treat, otherwise it's a just a solid documentary that the hidden bowler in us will appreciate.

One of my goals is to catch every oscar winner from when the awards first were given out. Double Indemnity won a bunch, including best picture, in 1944. It takes a certain mindset to appreciate a sixty year old movie as something more than a curiosity, after all our society has changed so much. But I think if a flick concentrates on universal understanding, those timeless archtypes, then everybody can resonate with it's story regardless of it's age. This one is tight Billy Wilder film noire with Fred MacMurray, Barbara Stanwyck and Edward G. Robinson all caught up in murder for an insurance scam. Every great film starts with casting and this team is perfect. It was cutting edge material back in production code days and the tension gets so thick you could slice it up with Wilder's sharp dialogue.

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Best Two Out Of Three?

Tom Engelhardt reminds us of a prior Iraq war, one that was fought in a virtual universe back in July of 2002. The US military decided to drop a cool $1/4 billion on a war game with an unnamed middle east country, meaning Iraq, and things didn't start to turn out too well for the yankees:

"At the cost of a quarter-billion dollars, the Pentagon launched the most elaborate war games in its history, immodestly entitled "Millennium Challenge 02." These involved all four services in "17 simulation locations and nine live-force training sites." Officially a war against a fictional country in the Persian Gulf region -- but obviously Iraq -- it was specifically scripted to prove the efficacy of the Rumsfeld-style invasion that the Bush administration had already decided to launch.
Lt. Gen. Van Riper commanded the "Red Team" -- the Iraqis of this simulation -– against the "Blue Team," U.S. forces; and, unfortunately for Rumsfeld, he promptly stepped out of the script. Knowing that sometimes the only effective response to high-tech warfare was the lowest tech warfare imaginable, he employed some of the very techniques the Iraqi insurgency would begin to use all-too-successfully a year or two later.

In other words like the inventive misfits at a war game in the movie "The Dirty Dozen", the red team was fluid and innovative and used their strengths against the enemy's weaknesses with devastating results.

Such simple devices as, according to the Army Times, using "motorcycle messengers to transmit orders, negating Blue's high-tech eavesdropping capabilities," and "issuing attack orders via the morning call to prayer broadcast from the minarets of his country's mosques." In the process, Van Riper trumped the techies.
"At one point in the game," as
Fred Kaplan of Slate wrote in March 2003, "when Blue's fleet entered the Persian Gulf, he sank some of the ships with suicide-bombers in speed boats. (At that point, the managers stopped the game, ‘refloated' the Blue fleet, and resumed play.)" After three or four days, with the Blue Team in obvious disarray, the game was halted and the rules rescripted. In a quiet protest, Van Riper stepped down as enemy commander."

So there is one out of two reasons why america is flushing itself down the toilet with it's bloody shitheap in the middle east - the military is as dangerously incompetent and stupid as it's commander in chief, or war game outcome or no, the situation over there was planned to turn out this way.

I believe the latter. There's such a laundry list of conscious steps to get to this unholy hell that I can't even begin to list them all. I believe it was deliberate policy to destroy Iraq and to dangerously destabalize the entire region. Why else would you have the most elaborate war gaming in military history and not learn from or give a shit about the outcome?
And then stroll right into the real thing?

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Rice Continues The Ugly American Tradition

Kindasleazy upheld a long and dishonorable tradition of american meddling in foreign affairs by pompously declaring the US holds sway over the future of Lebanon:

"WASHINGTON (AFP) - US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice warned
Syria and Iran in an exclusive interview with AFP that the "future of Lebanon is not an issue for negotiation."

In an exclusive interview with AFP, Rice rejected mounting calls to deal directly with Damascus and Tehran as part of efforts to end the crisis in Iraq and said the two states should have no doubts about Washington's commitment to the embattled government of Lebanon.
"I want to make it very clear that the future of Lebanon is not an issue for negotiation with anybody," she said."

I think the millions of Lebanese who have been protesting in Beirut might have something to say to her about that.

The Same, Only More So

I suspect the weighty decisions are all made well in advance among the heavy hitters at the top, barring some unexpected crisis. Sockpuppet will then get his marching orders to be the front man in the well oiled propaganda effort to make the rubes think we have a government that functions like we're told in history class. That acts with wise deliberation for the good of the people and all that. It's all about perception.

We've travelled so far into bizarro world that the Baker group's tepid findings and suggestions about Iraq are touted as a stinging rebuke to Codpiece and his bloody shitheap. It's nothing of the kind. First of all the bandaid brigade is made up of water carriers for the fascists like former congressmen and cabinet members who helped implement the disastrous invasion and occupation in the first place. It's a who's who of wheeler dealers. Their final presentation is like the army's "hurry up and wait" attitude. Frank Rich of the NYT says:

"The group's coulda-woulda recommendations are either nonstarters, equivocations (it endorses withdrawal of combat troops by 2008 but is averse to timelines) or contradictions of its own findings of fact."

Adding to it's irrelevance is the claim that the sole reason for Baker and the boys to do what they did is to appease the Saudis, who desperately want the US to stay and watch over the Sunni minority. After all, Baker and other members are involved with law firms representing the Saudis. Makes you wonder what their first priorities are.

The perceptual charade continued with Von Rumsfeld's ouster and having Iran Contra gangster Robert Gates breeze through his secretary hearings. Shuffling the war criminal deck chairs will probably fool enough of the rubes into thinking something is being done to fix Iraq. Putting Gates in as secretary of defense is as venal as the Iraq group report name - "The Way Forward" is inane.

So now we have Bush announcing that this week he's all bound and determined to get "new ideas on Iraq" by meeting with various sycophants and co - conspirators and yes men. What a bunch of crap. The mixed messages the fascists keep delivering ensure that nothing at all is going to change and Babylon is going to continue to drip blood.

Like today, where we learn that around 150 Iraqis and 5 GIs are dead and who knows how many wounded.

Monday, December 11, 2006

Is George Bush “The Manchurian Candidate?”

By Robert Buzzanco

"If enemies of the United States had gotten together a few years ago to devise a plan to damage America and undermine its global position–diminish its power and credibility, drag it into a stubborn war, harm its relations with allies, create international financial disarray, run up huge deficits, create political openings for the Europeans and China to exploit and become equals in global economic matters, motivate terrorists, bring the U.S. image in the Middle East to its nadir, restrict civil liberties at home, and so forth–they would have been hard-pressed to create a program that would be more effective than the Bush administration’s policies on these issues of war, terrorism, and global economics have."

Put another way, if someone wanted to really harm this country, how would they have done it differently? They wouldn't have.

Nobody's Enamored With The Hammer

A lot of blogs have glommed onto this today but it's so much fun I'll just pile on.

Tom DeLay (sleazebag, Texas) decided to start a blog and didn't find a very warm reception. From his first post:

"I have created this blog in order to provide Americans with a new meeting place where such opinions and viewpoints might be better shared, discussed and debated; a place where conservative and traditionalist Americans might speak truth to power and to one another.
In all honesty, I did not fully realize the impact or potential of the blogosphere until very recently…"

His site was up for about an impressive one hour before it and all the not terribly supportive comments were removed. Somebody mirrored the site for our amusement.

Sunday, December 10, 2006

Saudi America

By Alan Bisbort at The Smirking Chimp

"But is there a conspiracy?

You make the call. Joshua Holland has reported that in September, after the primaries were through, gas prices dropped fifty cents per gallon. Two weeks before the election, gas prices were at an annual low. One week after the election, prices rose five cents a gallon. Each week since has seen a similar rise. So that now, a month out from the election, prices seem on pace to reclaim that magic $3 per gallon figure by the new year.
It's no secret that the Saudi royal family loves the Bush family. All one need do is look at the photographs of them together, documentation that stretches back into George H.W. Bush's presidency. Grown men, swaddled in jewels and ornate headdresses holding hands with a Bush man, any Bush will do."

Biggest Demonstration In Lebanon's History

Half of the population of the country turned out today to protest the fascist leaning pro western government of Prime Minister Fouad Siniora.

"Speakers told the throngs that the government was in the thrall of the United States, repeating accusations that Siniora's allies had hoped Israel would crush the Shi'ite militant group Hezbollah in its recent war with Israel.
"I tell you that after the (Israeli) aggression ... there is no place for America in Lebanon," said Hezbollah deputy chief Sheikh Naim Kassem, speaking behind bullet proof-glass."

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Saturday, December 09, 2006

Is The Intent To Destroy The US Military?

Military readiness lowest since Vietnam War
"The Iraq Study Group did consider whether a major increase in the number of U.S. troops in Iraq -- perhaps by as much as 100,000 or 200,000 troops -- might help. But the panel explicitly ruled out a large, continual boost in U.S. forces. "America's military capacity is stretched thin: we do not have the troops or equipment to make a substantial, sustained increase in our troop presence," the group found. That echoes the sentiments of numerous retired military officers who have long argued that the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan are unsustainable even at the current pace.
"Unless things start to improve, we will start to see a serious problem in six to nine months," Bernard E. Trainor, a retired Marine Corps three-star general and a former deputy chief of staff under Ronald Reagan, told Salon in April 2005. The new Baker Commission report suggests that serious problems have already arrived. "U.S. military forces, especially our ground forces, have been stretched nearly to the breaking point by repeated deployments in Iraq."

Warmongering Pantload : Damn the torpedos, full speed ahead, you go first!

US plans to send more troops to Baghdad
WASHINGTON, Dec 9: The Bush administration plans to send additional troops to Baghdad, contrary to the suggestion of a bipartisan panel which advised it to begin a gradual withdrawal by 2008, US media reported on Saturday.

Friday, December 08, 2006

Two Different Headlines, Same Incident

AirForceTimes - Coalition troops kill 20 insurgents in Iraq.

"BAGHDAD — U.S.-led coalition forces killed 20 insurgents, including two women, Friday in fighting and airstrikes that targeted al-Qaida in Iraq militants northwest of Baghdad, the military said.
Searching the area, the coalition forces found and destroyed several weapons caches, including AK47s, machine guns, rocket-propelled grenades, anti-personnel mines, explosives, blasting caps and suicide vests, the command said."

Belfast Telegraph - Six Iraqi children among 32 killed in US air attacks

"The US military is being accused of killing several civilians during an air strike apparently targeting al-Qa'ida militants in Iraq.
The US is claiming to have killed 20 militants, two of them women, during air strikes near Thar Thar Lake north-east of Baghdad.
However, Iraqi police and officials say 32 people were killed, including eight women and at least six children.
They say US forces bombed two homes at around 1am.
The US says machine-guns, rocket-propelled grenades, anti-personnel mines, explosives and suicide vests were found during follow-up searches

Hmmm, let's see. The military calls in air strikes on a densely crowded neighborhood at one o'clock in the morning on a ficticious terrorist group and immediately feels the need to boast about supposed terrorist paraphenalia. I wonder which version makes it to Faux© News?

Tsunami On The Sun

Tsunami - like blast wave rips across the Sun

A huge blast of energy from a group of sunspots rippled it's way across the sun's surface on wednesday, after a similar release of energy on tuesday. A quicktime video of it can be found here. This thing has been exploding since it was first detected on Dec. 5 and the earth is going to just brush by some of the plasma from one of the coronal mass ejections tonight, maybe triggering some fantastic northern lights like this:

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The problem in the next couple of weeks is that if this bad boy sunspot group explodes again with these mega blasts and if the earth is hit directly , all sorts of havoc can happen from phone lines going down to hemorrhoid flare ups.

Pentagon Fomenting the "Civil War" in Iraq

It's about time the MSM paid attention to this, but I don't hold my breath:

"The Pentagon's "Proactive, Preemptive Operations Group (P2OG)" is behind many of the terrorist attacks in Iraq. The car bombings, assassinations, sabotage, kidnappings and attacks on mosques are designed to cause violence and discord between Sunnis and Shiites. P2OG in collusion with Israeli IDF and MOSSAD operatives are responsible for a series of secret covert operations whose purpose is to create an all out civil war in Iraq. The ultimate purpose is to dismember the country, achieve complete control and make it easier for the USA and Zionist Israel to profit from Iraq's vast oil resources."
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Born Under a Bad Sign

Librans most likely to have driving convictions

Female drivers born under the starsign Libra are more likely to impact upon their women's car insurance premiums by having motoring convictions, research has shown.

"Looking at the conviction rates of more than 480,000 female motorists, women's car insurance specialist Diamond discovered that Librans were most likely to hold motoring convictions, compared with Virgoans who are the least likely.

Librans were also found to make the most claims on their women's car insurance while Geminis made the least claims.
Sian Lewis, Diamond's managing director, said: "I am a bit sceptical about astrology, I'm not sure that the time of year someone is born can affect their personality, but our research suggests perhaps it does affect their driving ability."
The element most likely to have motoring convictions was air, consisting of Libra, Gemini and Aquarius, while water signs - Cancer, Scorpio and Pisces - were the least likely to have convictions."

Whew, Mrs Lipstick is a Virgo and I'm a Cancer.

Thursday, December 07, 2006

Iraq’s Death Squads: An Instrument Of The Occupation

by Ghali Hassan at Global Research

On November 14, 2006 militias and death squads dressed as police commandos kidnapped up to 150 staff and visitors in broad daylight raid – one of daily raids throughout Iraq – on the Higher Education Ministry annexe in central Baghdad. Although some hostages have been released, the fate of others is unknown. It is alleged that large number of the hostages have been tortured and others were murdered. The totality of the raids, kidnapping, torture, ongoing civilian massacres and murder were part of the illegal and racist war of aggression perpetrated by the U.S. and Britain against a defenceless nation in disregard of International Law and contempt for International institutions.

Let me stating the obvious. The U.S. did not invade Iraq to establish “democracy” and “free Iraqis”. The U.S. invaded and destroyed Iraq in order to humiliate and divide Muslims – Arabs in particular –, protect Israel’s Zionist expansion and control Iraq’s natural wealth.

Destabilisation was one of the aims of U.S. foreign policy.


When winter comes Mrs Lipstick and I like to settle in on these dark, cold nights and watch movies. It's just so pleasant to get a crackling fire going in the fireplace, set out a bowl of good popcorn and get into a flick while the rain pounds and the wind howls.

I've been a fan of online rentals for a couple of years. It's simply the best value for your money, especially if you like classic films that aren't carried by your local rental shops, which mostly have new releases. The two online rental giants are Blockbuster and Netflix with a bunch of smaller outfits. With no late fees and free postage back and forth, it can come out to less than a dollar a movie if you watch a bunch per month. The only problem was the lag time using snail mail.

Last year war broke out between BB and NF. NF dropped their monthly price for three movies out at a time to undercut BB by $3 and vowed to crush BB. I switched over to NF because of the cheaper price and the fact NF had so many distribution centers which meant faster turnaround. Their website is also very advanced and easy to use. They started pulling away from the competition. Netflix was everywhere online and looked like the winner.

Until about a month ago. I have to hand it to Blockbuster - they understood the problem and responded well. Since just about everybody is in easy driving distance to ubiquitous BB stores they decided to use them as drop off centers. You take your online rental in, they scan it to alert the distribution center to mail you your next pick on your online list, plus you use the drop off movie to get a free in store rental. In essence you get six titles out at one time. Plus your account gives you two free rentals from the store per month. The only drawback could be that individual BB stores might have crappy inventories.

From a marketing viewpoint what they did was sharp and bold or completely insane. It'll be interesting to see how Netflix responds. Pass the popcorn.
Henry Rollins is pissed, and rightly so.

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

NASA Officials Admit There Maybe, Possibly, Could Be Flowing Water On Mars

At the press conference today, NASA (Never A Straight Answer) honchos allowed that liquid water could be present on the surface of Mars. They said they compared images taken years apart by the Mars Global Surveyor and found some newly formed suspicious seeps. Of course that's completely at odds with the cold, dead planet myth we've been fed for years but this isn't the first time our moribund scientific establishment fails to reconcile observed phenomena with outdated dogma.
Or maybe they're just a tad hesitant to admit the obvious.

For example, what do you see going on here?

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To me it's fair to say they're geysers, shooting up and all blowing downwind.

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And can't say for sure, but this stuff sure looks like some sort of vegetation, no?

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NASA Press Conference

NASA (Never A Straight Answer) announced two days ago that it's going to hold a press conference in a few hours to announce "asignificant find on Mars. What's known is that they'll indicate that the Mars Global Surveyor mission is about at an end. There's speculation that they'll announce some other interesting items.

The scientists finally imaged the two Viking landers and their assorted debris from the 1970s along with the current rover Spirit. Considering how small they are from orbit that's quite a coup.

A major blockbuster could be that they have proof of standing water on the surface of the planet, or some evidence of recent water erosion. Up to now official paradigms have insisted that Mars is too cold, too dry with air too thin to allow water to exist in liquid form.
However ever since Mariner in the 60s there have been plenty of pictures like this of what appear to be seeps all over the face of the planet:

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Two years ago there were layers of dust on the Opportunity rover solar panels that were blocking sunlight and limiting performance. Then suddenly one night something happened that cleaned them off. Speculation was that some wind gusts did it, but when the rover took a picture of it's tracks down on the bottom it sure appeared as if there was a puddle. Did a rain shower clean the panels?

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Also food for thought - the probes have taken lots of pictures like the following which to my untrained eye look for all the world like vegetation. Up to now NASA and JPL haven't come up with any explanations for what this is:

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Are they going to announce definitive proof of life on Mars?

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Demonstrations Will Be Extinct

The fascists get all high tech on us.

"The crowd is getting ugly. Soldiers roll up in a Hummer. Suddenly, the whole right half of your body is screaming in agony. You feel like you've been dipped in molten lava. You almost faint from shock and pain, but instead you stumble backwards -- and then start running. To your surprise, everyone else is running too. In a few seconds, the street is completely empty.
You've just been hit with a new nonlethal weapon that has been certified for use in Iraq -- even though critics argue there may be unforeseen effects.
According to documents obtained for Wired News under federal sunshine laws, the Air Force's Active Denial System, or ADS, has been certified safe after lengthy tests by military scientists in the lab and in war games.
The ADS shoots a beam of millimeters waves, which are longer in wavelength than x-rays but shorter than microwaves -- 94 GHz (= 3 mm wavelength) compared to 2.45 GHz (= 12 cm wavelength) in a standard microwave oven."

"It will repel you," one test subject said. "If hit by the beam, you will move out of it -- reflexively and quickly. You for sure will not be eager to experience it again."

Wanna know how a frozen pizza feels? Oh, and it's just one of a whole host of "non lethal" toys the gendarmes will employ at say, the next big antiwar crowd. There are acoustic beams and bullets, ultrasound emitters, sticky polymers, electronic fences, lasers, biotechnical agents and on and on.
Our overlords consider us lab rats.

Monday, December 04, 2006

"Fear Took Over' in Baghdad Raid"

This article neatly encapsulates Bush's Iraq. Some collaborator units with their american trainers went into a Sunni Arab neighborhood in a raid for suspected "insurgents". Seems the 'hood didn't take too kindly to that:

"Staffed with veterans of the Iraq-Iran war of the 1980s and equipped with a complement of refurbished Soviet tanks and American Humvees, the 4,000-soldier 9th division is considered Iraq's best hope for an eventual U.S. troop withdrawal.
But confusion swiftly reigned as insurgents in Fadhil pummeled dismounted Iraqi troops and their American advisors. U.S. radio jammers seeking to hinder communications between insurgents ended up blocking the Iraqi soldiers' walkie-talkies, forcing them to use unreliable cellphone signals to stay in contact. Voice commands were lost amid the explosions and gunfire echoing off the walls.
At one point, U.S. and Iraqi troops piled into a Humvee to escape the hail of insurgent bullets pinging off the armor cladding.
"I was pulling people in," said Army Sgt. 1st Class Kent McQueen. "We were all bunched in there together with the gunner. It was like a game of Twister.
"An insurgent tried to throw a grenade into a Humvee's top hatch, but it bounced off and exploded on the ground.
At times, the overwhelmed Iraqi soldiers fired wildly, sweeping their machine-gun barrels across friendly and insurgent targets alike, witnesses said.
"I had to throw bullet casings at them to get their attention," said Sgt. 1st Class Agustin Mendoza, another U.S. trainer who manned a Humvee gun turret during the battle. "They had no weapons discipline."
"A round hit the glass shield of my turret behind me," Mendoza said. "I hit a guy down the alley and a propane tank. It exploded in a big fireball.
"The number of insurgents in the area was estimated at more than 100. Soldiers said they killed 20 and detained 43 others, including three foreign fighters.
No count was made of the number of civilians killed in the densely populated neighborhood, but U.S. and Iraqi soldiers acknowledged a significant amount of "collateral damage."

What you have here is a timeless example of what occupation eventually becomes. The invading force desperately needs to install a puppet government and cobble together some sort of security force to keep them in power. The satrapy is an illusion, the motivation for the collaborators is half hearted at best. Under occupation Iraq has become a toxic, corpse strewn shitheap.

Sunday, December 03, 2006

Gold Medal Wiener

Von Rumsfeld was awarded a gold medal by some rich boys club in Philedelphia a couple of days ago. What for? Who the fuck knows.

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Interesting that the recipient this year was shrouded in secrecy until the last minute. According to the AP:
"When asked about the secrecy surrounding the Rumsfeld medal, league spokeswoman Patricia Tobin said, "It's up to the awardee. We always try to respect the wishes of the awardee."
Later, Rummy was seen running up the stairs trying to sneak in.

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Cost of the War in Iraq
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