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12/01 Direct Link

Reading The Tea Leaves...

Come February a world of armies will barrel into Baghdad with such pounding thunder Saddam Hussein will roundly shit his pants if he can even stand up. In short order, he'll know only blinding vertigo and the migraine of all head-bashings.

Well Rumulated and thoroughly Bushwhacked, he'll bully a seat on Exile-Airways. While believing he's going to hightail his clobbered ass to Libya, British agents will hoodwink the eviscerated despot onto a mislabeled Airbus bound for Tel Aviv or Teheran. Soon thereafter, Saddam will suffer a mild anxiety attack and marry a twelve year-old Hindu boy.
12/02 Direct Link

Songwriters . . .

Mick Jagger and Keith Richards have written 99% of The Rolling Stones' original material. Interestingly, based upon their many solo recording projects, neither one appears the stronger writer. They are best and most consistent when they collaborate. They seem to be a true songwriting team.

Lennon and McCartney were not. John and Paul generally wrote separately, but by agreement they put both their names on every Beatle song either wrote. So it didn't matter much if they weren't getting along, until it came time to record. Their songwriting partnership was a facade contrived mainly for financial and marketing purposes.
12/03 Direct Link

Really Weaving Bad Bloodless Banter, Plus...

1. "If you have five real friends on the day you die, you've had a great life." – Lee Iacocca

2. "Even a war crimes tribunal has to be practical sometimes." – An American ambassador to a European nation, I think.

3. "He's a brilliant secretary of defense, may very well be the very best we've ever had." – Lt. Gen. Tom McInerney, U.S. Air Force (Ret.) on Secretary Rumsfeld, Oct. 17, 2002

4. "It is decided to remain seized of the matter." – United Nations Security Council Resolution On Iraq, November 8, 2002 (Closing Item, Number 14)
12/04 Direct Link

Paul Wolfowitz On Disarmament & Verification...

"Let's be clear, Resolution 1441 calls for another meeting -- a meeting, not another resolution.

And the issue is not inspections; the issue is disarmament. It is not the job of the inspectors to comb through every square inch of Iraq looking for evidence. It is Saddam Hussein's job to fully and completely disclose all of his weapons programs. Only then can the inspectors verify that he has in fact given full and complete disclosure.

Saddam Hussein knows what he has; he has to disclose it, and he has to get rid of it."
12/05 Direct Link

Exemplary Attitudes...

1. "Success is always forgiven." – Colonel Ralph

2. "The difference between Eminem and Elvis: Elvis scared our parents, but in truth he only wanted to be our Teddy Bear. Eminem is frightening because he wants our kids to hate us." -- Bill O'Reilly

3. "The majority of Americans simply do not share the left's belief that the world is a dangerous place primarily because of the recklessness of American power." – Peter Beinart

4. "Allies and enemies alike, they're both best left to labor in awe of our nation's most gnarly, head-slamming, kick-ass, kill power; lest they acquire an attitude." – Big Bad Major Barf!

12/06 Direct Link

Young Lovers Ignore Indian Caste System: Hanged By Parents

Police in the northern Indian state of Uttar Pradesh arrested seven people for lynching two young lovers who came from different castes. The caste system is rigidly observed in India. The parents of the teenagers were among those arrested. The brutal deaths highlight the dangers of human ignorance and superstition, which support the caste system in India.

The couple, Vishal (19) and Sonu (18), were hanged one after the other from a rooftop in their home village. Their only crime was to fall in love in violation of a pointless custom.
12/07 Direct Link

Pathological Behavior & More...

1. "Whenever a friend succeeds, a little something in me dies." – Gore Vidal

2. "Prohibition... goes beyond the bounds of reason in that it attempts to control a man's appetite through legislation and makes a crime out of things that are not crimes. A prohibition law strikes a blow at the very principles upon which our government was founded." -- Abraham Lincoln, December 1840

3. "It was not until 1957 that a Gedankenexperiment by Hermann Bondi showed that gravitational waves carry energy." – Ignazio Ciufolini

A "Gedankenexpriment" is an experiment requiring only thought to conduct. Yes, it is all one word.
12/08 Direct Link

Hah!

"In Afghanistan, Usama bin Laden will either be left alive, while thousands of impoverished, frightened people are bombed into oblivion around him, or he will be killed in a bombing attack for which he seems quite prepared.

But what would happen to his cool armor if he could be reminded of all the good, nonviolent things he has done? Further, what would happen to him if he could be brought to understand the preciousness of the lives he has destroyed?

I firmly believe the only punishment that works is love."

--Alice Walker, The Village Voice,
October 9, 2001
12/09 Direct Link

The Quackery...

1. "Hope is not a method." – General Gordon Sullivan, former U.S. Army Chief of Staff

2. "If you are intellectually audacious, you can redefine the boundaries of what is politically possible." – Peter Beinart

3. "I've kicked around long enough to know that anyone can be blamed for anything, and some lynch-mob posse somewhere will be happy hunt me down to prove it." – Duck

4. "I think the American people felt as much anxiety as all other peoples expecting that thermonuclear war would break out any moment. And we were very close to such war indeed." – Nikita Khrushchev
12/10 Direct Link

...Into The Realm Of Science

In 1929 Edwin Hubble made the landmark observation that wherever you look, distant stars are moving rapidly away from us. In other words, the universe is expanding. He also reasoned that about ten or twenty thousand million years ago, all the stars must have started from exactly the same place.

Hubble's discovery brought the beginning of the universe into the realm of science. Hubble also suggested the big bang, an instant when the universe was infinitesimally small and, therefore, infinitely dense. If there were events earlier than this, they could not affect what happened afterward.
12/11 Direct Link

The eight women who "got the chair" at Sing Sing:

1. Martha Place, Age 44 - Executed March 20, 1899 (electrocution #20)

2. Ruth Snyder, Age 33 - Executed January 12, 1928 (#267)

3. Anna Antonio, Age 27 - Executed August 9, 1934 (#359)

4. Eva Coo, Age 41 - Executed June 27, 1935 (#373)

5. Frances Creighton, Age 36 - Executed July 16, 1936 (#395)

6. Helen Fowler, Age 37 - Executed November 16, 1944 (#512)

7. Martha Jule Beck, Age 29 - Executed March 8, 1951 (#559)

8. Ethel Rosenberg, Age 35 - Executed June 19, 1953 (#568)
12/12 Direct Link

Barf For President!

Empower me with the might of the United States and I'll brute force smash the Saudi Arabian secret police dead in an hour. Make me President of the USA and the Roush sisters will be home in California, and delighted to be there, in three days.

I won't need any nukes because the whole world will correctly assume that were anybody or nation to defy me even ONCE, I would blow them to smithereens without hesitation. Without hesitation!

Fortunately I know good from evil. The world could use a nice maniac like me in The White House.
12/13 Direct Link

The Big Bad Blather Fest...

1. "Al Qaeda probably doesn't require a committee vote to execute a snitch." – John Tierney, The New York Times

2. Relative monsterdom: ‘Saddam Hussein is ten times worse than Milosevic, plenty bad enough, and one-third the evil of Hitler.' – Paul Wolfowitz

3. "The tragedy of Gephardt, Daschle, and McAuliffe is that they have made Democratic support for war with Iraq synonymous with cynical calculation and ideological me-tooism." – Peter Beinart, Editor, The New Republic

4. "It is significant that the U.S. military has not been deployed on American soil for 137 years -- trained, yes -- but not engaged." – Ambassador Duck Nelson
12/14 Direct Link

Where Are The Pro-Abortion Rallies?

Why do "Right To Life" advocates say "pro-abortion" when they mean "Pro-Choice"? Are "Pro-Life" and Right To Life people really so simple they can't distinguish between a fundamental personal freedom, and an abhorrent medical procedure? It is not a subtle nuance.

Can Pro-Life advocates truly be that shallow? Or do they think the rest of us are so numb we don't notice? The ‘Choice is vile and monstrous' implication is hardly subtle – it's a mean spirited cheap shot, sez me. What sort of Godless souls would do such a thing, and repeat it so relentlessly?
12/15 Direct Link

The Ning-Nong Nictionary,
Continued -- Part IV . . .


1. Booboisie (boob-wah-ZEE), noun: A class of people regarded as stupid or foolish.

2. Heathen: The uncivilized, the unenlightened, the unconverted.

3. Kerfuffle: Fuss, commotion, disorder.

4. Pump & Dump: An unethical stockbrokerage practice. First, drive up a thinly traded stock price by encouraging (bamboozling) investors to buy (that's the "pump"). Then the brokerage sells its own shares (the "dump") for a tidy profit before the investors can get out.

5. Screed: a long monotonous speech or piece of writing.

6. Seismic Experience: PC for earthquake in California.

7. Skirt: A woman (offensive slang).
12/16 Direct Link

Kissinger Resigns As 9/11 Commission Chairman...

Dear Mr. President:

To remove any question about even the appearance of a conflict of interest, I was prepared, as I informed the White House Counsel, to submit all relevant financial information to the White House.

However, it is clear that, although specific conflicts can be resolved in this matter, controversy will quickly envelop the consulting firm I have built and own. The liquidation of Kissinger Associates cannot be accomplished without significant delay in the Joint Commission's work. I have, therefore, concluded that I cannot accept the responsibility you proposed.

Respectfully,

Henry A. Kissinger
12/17 Direct Link

Trent Lott's Strategic Alternative...

If Senator Lott had chosen to argue his meaning rather than apologize, he could have claimed he was referring to the principle of "states rights" as a mandate to curb the growth of the Federal government. By insisting his comment reflected his preference for policy making at the state level, and less taxation at the federal – he'd assert a hypothetical improvement over history.

But "home rule" doesn't grab the nation's ear the way "Dixiecrat racist" does. That, plus wide perception that "state's rights" is Southern-speak for segregation anyway, compelled the senator to grovel instead of debate.
12/18 Direct Link

Try Me...

1. "Let there be no doubt; I and the president and others have let it be known, publicly and privately, to the Saddam Hussein regime, that anyone who is involved in using weapons of mass destruction will wish they hadn't."
– Defense Secretary Rumsfeld

2. "Saudi Arabia's interior minister, Nayef bin Abdel Aziz, told a Saudi newspaper that the Zionists 'are behind these events' of 9/11. Yes, yes, there were 15 Saudi hijackers, but the Jews did it. How pathetic. It is that sort of escapism, 'Death to the other guy', that has retarded Arab development for decades."
– Thomas Friedman
12/19 Direct Link

Go Figure...

This Trent Lott situation reminds me of the recent disemboweling of Arthur Andersen by the U.S. government, costing Andersen's 80,000 innocent employees their jobs. I don't actually give a damn about Lott or Andersen, but I do know that both have pulled some egregious boners in the past, for which they really should have been hung out to dry. However, there were no consequences then.

But this year these miscreant pillars of big-time America got busted for adult equivalents of smoking in the high school boys room – for which they were summarily pummeled into the slaughterhouse! Over bupkiss!
12/20 Direct Link

Kissinger On Arafat...

Interviewer: Do you think that Arafat really wants peace?

Henry A. Kissinger: I think Arafat is conflicted. What he really wants is the destruction of the Israeli state.

He may be willing to make an interim agreement if he views it to be a step toward the ultimate destruction of Israeli. Or when he feels sufficiently weak, or he thinks the circumstances provide him no alternative, he will make an interim agreement.

One should not, however, believe that Arafat will ever reconcile himself to the existence of a permanent Israeli state...no matter what agreements he may make.
12/21 Direct Link

The New York Times' List Of The Most Common Unanswered Questions...

1. In the war on terror, how do we define the enemy?

2. What is the source of the anger that prompts al Qaeda to their bloody attacks?

3. Why does the Bush Administration believe "any serious, full-scale war against terrorism has to include Iraq as a target"?

4. Will victory over the Taliban and Saddam Hussein put us over the hump in the war on terror?

5. What will go on in the collective mind of the Islamic world as it watches America crush one Muslim regime after another, after another, after another...?
12/22 Direct Link

Duck-o-nomics...

As a state or society transitions to prosperity, a market economy gains in relative efficiency – and fairness. Market systems during conditions of poverty disproportionately concentrate resources; conversely, during prosperity, the volume of resource management decisions soon overwhelms command systems. The mercilessness of the market cited by Marxists exists in poverty, and grows more brutal as poverty intensifies. In prosperity, however, market systems undergo a transformation toward inclusive effectiveness.

Poverty means not only fewer resources but fewer allocation decisions, permitting centralized management. As prosperity proliferates, and resource-exploitation patterns complicate, decision-making must be entrusted (i.e., diffused) to the individual market participants.
12/23 Direct Link

The Chitter & The Chatter...

1. "Usama bin Laden, Terrorist-in-Chief, dead or alive?" – Fox News Headline

2. "I don't usually practice psychiatry on camera, but Al Gore is truly at the edge. He could use a little help." – Charles Krauthammer, Associated Press

3. "North Korea doesn't like to hear me say it, but they continue to be the largest proliferator of missiles and ballistic missile technology on the face of the earth." – Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld

4. Pro-Lifer to Pro-Choice: "What gives you the right to trample on my right to trample on your rights?" – Submitted by Snitch Wheeler, M.F.H.
12/24 Direct Link

Andrew H. Card Jr., 55, Bush's chief of staff interrupted the president and whispered directly in his right ear, "A second plane hit the second tower. America is under attack."

A photo of that moment is etched for history. The president's hands are folded formally in his lap, his head turned to hear Card's words. His face has a distant sober look, almost frozen, edging on bewilderment. Bush remembers exactly what he was thinking: "They had declared war on us, and I made up my mind at that moment that we were going to war."

– from "Bush At War" by Bob Woodward
12/25 Direct Link

"We're taking steps to alert, mobilize and deploy U.S. forces -- active, Guard and Reserve.

None of this reflects a decision by the president or the United Nations or anyone else, to my knowledge, to use force. The president has not made such a decision. These are intended to support diplomatic efforts, to make clear to the Iraqi regime the need to comply with their U.N. obligations.

We'll continue to work with the United Nations to encourage Iraqi compliance. The use of force is a last resort. The goal is for Iraq to comply with U.N. resolutions."

– Defense Secretary Rumsfeld
12/26 Direct Link

No Blaspheme Here...

1. "We're going to take care of this. And when we find out who did this, they're not going to like me. We're going to find out who did this, and we're going to kick their asses." – "W" to Cheney, 9/11, 9:44am

2. "When the top brass or senior management says, ‘Now, I want you to think outside the box on this.' What they really want is to hear a fresh justification for their existing beliefs. The only innovations an organization ever valued were those that saved money on office supplies." – Lt. Col. Ralph Peters, U.S. Army
12/27 Direct Link

Iranians Demand:
"Death To Dictatorship!"

"Iran's mullahs have lost their legitimacy with a wide swath of Iranians who have concluded that Islamic hard-liners, not America, are to blame for their economic woes, political paralysis and isolation.

The fact that they've identified the real problem as bad mullahs, not outsiders; and the real solution as true democracy, not some rigged Islamic version -- is a big change. When Arab Muslims across the gulf draw the same conclusion - that their own autocrats, religious fanatics and education systems are what's holding them back, not America – they will begin curbing the madness."

-- Thomas L. Friedman
12/28 Direct Link

I propose a cabinet level Department of International Spin Control (DISC) charged with marketing the United States of America to the rest of the world.

DISC should provide foreign persons, governments, and the press with meticulously reliable information about the U.S.A., American citizens and businesses, and U.S. government policies and initiatives.

Moreover, DISC should relentlessly correct erroneous info, rumors, propaganda, etc. whenever expressed beyond our borders – immediately countering mistakes, innuendo and deception with accurate information -- as aggressively as the most sophisticated private-sector public and investor relations functions operate. And address all media in all languages.

DISC's budget should dwarf DoD's.
12/29 Direct Link

NATIONAL SECURITY COUNCIL –
Excerpt From Minutes, Thursday,
September 13, 2001, 9:30am...

Cofer Black, Director, CIA Counterterrorism: Mr. President, we can do this. We'll set this thing up so it's an unfair fight. You give us the mission, we can get ‘em. We'll rout'em out. When we're through, they will have flies walking across their eyeballs.

President G.W. Bush: How long will it take?

Cofer Black: Once we're on the ground it should go in weeks.

Colin Powell (in handwritten note to file): The president is tired of rhetoric. He wants to kill somebody.


Note: The above may not be declassified.
12/30 Direct Link

Bushwhacked & Slandered...

Q: What was your impression of President Bush?

Senator Dean Barkley, Missouri, Independent: A rugby player who doesn't drink is leading the free world – it's such a fluke, one chance in billions. What's not to like?

*************************************************

Dad Of Duck: I like your DISC proposal. The trouble is the current administration won't do anything they did not think of first.

Duck: If I have to peddle my idea to the Democrats, I will. I'm not proud, just impertinent.

*************************************************

"If it moves, tax it; if it still moves; regulate it; and if it stops moving, subsidize it." – DNC Platform Proposal
12/31 Direct Link

Marketing Professor: Why does marketing always get a bad rap???

Duck: Did my suggestion cast "marketing" in a negative light?

Professor: I'm just touchy on the subject.

Duck: Okay, but I proposed the most comprehensive marketing campaign ever – potentially a trillion dollar a year investment! So if you're carrying the torch for all matters marketing, why aren't you smiling from ear to ear about it?

Professor: A "marketing" campaign by the Bush administration would be propaganda, spin, call-it-what-you-like, but something phony-sounding and ineffective.

Duck: Of course it will be a lot of spin and propaganda – it's marketing for Christ sake!