Monday, January 29, 2007

America's War on Islam

Conclusive proof:
Jermaine Jackson said on Monday he wants his brother Michael to convert to Islam; and he believes the reclusive superstar has given it serious thought.
Yikes. Destroying Iraq is one thing, but this is truly a bridge too far.

Jacko might want to think twice before converting, though, since in some places the punishment for his "romantic abnormality" probably involves having a wall dropped on his burning body as he's flogged with a cat o' nine tails soaked in hot oil.

Friday, January 26, 2007

Karma?

Here's a poignant illustration of the Buddhist philosophy that what comes around, goes around:
...an assailant gunned down an Afghan lawmaker who, under the former Taliban regime, oversaw the destruction of two Buddha statues carved into a cliff.

Maulavi Mohammed Islam Mohammadi, who was the Taliban's governor of Bamiyan province when the fifth-century Buddha statues were blown up with dynamite and artillery in March 2001, was killed on his way to Friday prayers in Kabul, said Zulmai Khan, Kabul's deputy police chief.
Talk about suffering for art! I'd hate to be around when this guy gets reincarnated.

Thursday, January 25, 2007

Attack of the Right-Wing Media

Too bad Dan Rather doesn't work at FOX News. It means that affable hack Steve Doocy, of FOX & Friends, and mean-spirited hack John Gibson, of The Big Story, don't have anyone but themselves to blame for running with a blatantly false story about how Barack Obama is a Muslim who attended a madrassa as a child in Indonesia.

Guilty of uncritically accepting a bogus story printed in the ironically-named Insight Magazine, put out by the good people at the Washington Times (and why not wholeheartedly embrace the regurgitations of the publishing wing of the Sun Myung Moon cult, right?), Doocy and Gibson should face the same censure that the right-wing pundits heaped on Rather when he ran afoul of their man-crush, President Bush.

At the very least, if consistency and honesty mean anything to our right-wing brethren, this should be a career-ender for Gibson and the Dooc. [Crickets]

It's worth noting that the word "madrassa" simply means "school" in Arabic (granted, not the language they speak in Indonesia). It is used in the way we use the word "school" in English. Just as some schools in America are religious schools, some madrassas are religiously oriented. It is only because we look at the Muslim world through the wormhole of terrorism that we automatically associate "madrassa" with Islamism and intolerance.

The same goes for "talib", which is Arabic for "student". The Arabic plural is "taliba" and the Pashto version is "taliban". So, the Taliban are, literally, the students. It is an incredibly common word in Arabic, with no negative connotations whatsoever. All of which makes Jon Stewart look like a bit of an ignoramus when he makes fun of the Iraqi president for having the surname Talabani.

But hey, take a look around. Who's interested in "understanding" anyway?

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Words of Wisdom

I'm usually not a big fan of bumper sticker witticisms, but I have to say I wholeheartedly agree with this one:



They should pass these out free to anyone signing up to start a blog.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Tapping to a New Tune

An unfettered NSA domestic surveillance program is so crucial to the continued survival of our nation that any kind of court oversight would be tantamount to hand-drawing Osama bin Laden a map to Dick Cheney's "secure undisclosed location" and handing him the launch codes to our nuclear arsenal to boot.

Until today, that is.

Mark Levin at NRO is aghast at Bush's decision to temper the imperious unaccountability that is—or should be—his (divine) right:
For the Bush administration to argue for years that this program, as operated, was critical to our national security and fell within the president's Constitutional authority, to then turn around and surrender presidential authority this way is disgraceful. The administration is repudiating all the arguments it has made in testimony, legal briefs, and public statements. This goes to the heart of the White House's credibility. How can it cast away such a fundamental position of principle and law like this?
Or, it could be that the White House's chicken little argument was all bluster and lies from the start. Imagine that.

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Worse Than the Terrorists

That's what liberals are. At least according to pundit and author Dinesh D'Souza (the kind of guy who puts "human rights" in quotes) in the new screed he's peddling to all the poor souls on the fringe right who are bottoming out between Ann Coulter releases. The Enemy at Home: The Cultural Left and Its Responsibility for 9/11 argues that, well, take a guess.

Sure, Chomsky et. al. didn't fly the planes into buildings themselves, but it's their fault all the same.
[T]he political and cultural left in this country bears a responsibility for the 9/11 attacks and also for undermining and opposing the war on terror. Since 9/11, the left has been saying that America is responsible for all this, and that American foreign policy has produced a "blowback" of resistance from the Islamic world. But it's not America that's to blame, it's the policies and ideas of the left. Their ideas, their America, has produced the blowback. So they should be pointing the finger at themselves.
And what exactly are these policies that so justifiably riled bin Laden and his gang? Oh, faggotry and the separation of church and state. Crap like that. No mention, by the way, of the spectacular incompetence of the Bush administration and the role that has played in undermining the Iraq war.
[Terrorists] see America as imposing its perverted culture, its sexual freedom, its extreme version of separation of church and state, on the rest of the world.

But of course it's not America that is promoting all this, it is the cultural left. So it is the cultural left's view of America—a kind of Gomorrah on a hill—and its efforts to promote those values abroad that is the main source of anti-Americanism in the Muslim world.
But don't get D'Souza wrong. He's no Fallwell. His point is totally different because he doesn't claim god is punishing us for abortion and lesbianism. No, we're being punished by man for our spiritual failings. And that makes it ok.

Of course, implicit in D'Souza's argument is the notion that he actually agrees with bin Laden that America deserves to be attacked by Islamist mercenaries because of "how we use our freedom" (like, say, to be free). Bin Laden and D'Souza agree on what's wrong with America, and D'Souza obviously thinks that we should curtail our disgusting freedoms at home to placate the people who want to murder us. Charming. Who needs the Enlightenment anyway?

If memory serves, the cultural right in this country got a little pissed off when idiots like Ward Churchill stood up and blamed the victims for 9/11. I wonder what kind of abuse they'll dish out when it's one of their own.

Oh, right. There's no breaking of ranks in the war against the enemy at home.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

The Fallacies of Drudge

It's right there in bold red letters: Yale A Cappella Group Beaten for Singing 'Star-Spangled Banner' in San Francisco...

How horrible! How so very San Francisco, no? We all know that liberals hate two things above all else: America and a cappella groups.

Take a look at the actual story, however, and you'll quickly realize that Mr. Drudge has caught himself in a bit of a post hoc ergo propter hoc fallacy (look it up, Matt). True, the Elis were beaten down after singing the "Star Spangled Banner", but not necessarily because of the song itself.

They were "mocked" during their rendition of the Anthem at a party (the first song they sang, by the way) and were called "faggot" and "homo". This doesn't sound like the reaction of people who hate the National Anthem. As we all know, San Franciscans who hate America love gay people and the perversions they're trying to push on our children with the help of the ACLU and the public schools. (It's awful Muslim terrorists who hate both America and gays, but that's getting a bit off topic). Rather, it strongly suggests that the assailants hated all-male a cappella choirs. Particularly ones with cheesy names like the Baker's Dozen.

This is, of course, easy to understand. Who doesn't bear at least some ill will toward people who can be described thusly: "the renowned, all-male a cappella singing group from Yale"? Still, violence is not the answer.

It's more like a bunch of idiot rich kids with trust fund balances higher than you or I could count got together and decided to see who was more gangsta. The fact that the fight was between the Yale a cappella group and (allegedly) some graduates of the ultra-prestigious Sacred Heart Cathedral prep school makes it all the more pathetic. One of the alleged assailants, the "son of a prominent Pacific Heights family", actually threatened the singers by saying "I'm 20 deep. My boys are coming." Holla!

Update: Drudge has changed his headline, replacing "for" with "after". Nice work, Matt. Now the logical fallacy is merely implicit rather than explicit, since he still mentions the "Star Spangled Banner" in the headline even though the song itself had apparently no bearing on the beat-down.

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

'Garden' State

Well, this isn't going to help cross-river relations any: N.J. eyed as source of stench over NYC.

Monday, January 08, 2007

I'll Be Back

To my loyal reader(s): I'm not dead; I've just rediscovered reading for pleasure. I'm sure I'll be motivated to write about something soon.

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

Prognosticating Pat

"Reverend" Pat Robertson passed along another stupid message from god during yesterday's broadcast of his "news" & talk program The 700 Club.

According to the elderly bigot and evangelical loose cannon, god warned him of a terrorist attack that will allegedly hit the U.S. in late 2007, resulting in "mass killing". He hedged a bit on exactly what form this attack would take: "I'm not necessarily saying it's going to be nuclear. The Lord didn't say nuclear. But I do believe it will be something like that." No word on whether it will be an even more frightening nookyuhler attack.

Most surprising, Robertson did not specify which gay, lesbian, abortionist, feminist, liberal, pro-immigrant, anti-Christmas outrage has so garnered the wrath of god. I mean, what's the point if he's not going to stick it to the weirdoes and preverts, right? He did mention something about how we're not really friends with Israel, though. And we all know that no one has the best interests of Israel in mind like an apocalyptic preacher who believes that Jews must populate the entirety of biblical Israel before Jesus can usher in the End Times and kill all the unbelievers, including, you guessed it, the Jews! Huzzah!

Here's the bottom line: I refuse to believe in the goodness or wisdom (or, heck, marginal intelligence) of a god who uses a guy like Pat Robertson as his emergency broadcast system. Who wants to worship that monstrosity?

Monday, January 01, 2007

Happy New Year!

And good riddance to 2006.

Whether you're a flighty, coked-out, skivvies-optional Hollywood uber-slut or a card-carrying member of the ACLU, you've had a pretty rotten year. Perhaps you divorced your dead-weight husband only to become less popular in the eyes of a fickle public, or maybe your government redefined "torture" to not include things like waterboarding or any kind of torture that doesn't cause permanent physical damage. Either way, 2007 would almost have to be better. Right?

Democracy had a spotty record in 2006, with our experiment in exporting it to the Middle East going into the crapper just at the point where we seemed to finally figure it out over here. Maybe the latter phenomenon will jump start the former, but I wouldn't bet my Social Security check on it.

On a brighter note, 2006 was an extremely bad year for bloodthirsty dictators. In mid-March, Slobodon Milosevic died while standing trial for crimes against humanity in the Hague. Just two weeks later, the former president of Liberia, Charles Taylor, was arrested and now awaits his own trial on war crime charges, slated to begin in April.

December was a perfect storm for three monsters of the 20th Century (four if you really, really hate Gerald Ford). Augusto Pinochet, late of Chile, and Turkmenbashi (nee Saparmurat Niyazov) the "President for Life" of Turkmenistan, both shuffled off this mortal coil last month, as did Saddam Hussein—with a little nudge.

With any luck, this trend will continue into 2007. God knows the Hollywood uber-sluts will.
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