NOBODY Scoops General Petraeus

Friday, August 31, 2007

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Appearing at The Jaundiced Eye, My Left Wing, and the Independent Bloggers' Alliance.

This week the General Accountability Office slipped an advance copy of its progress report on Iraq to the Washington Post. Their report was "strikingly negative." The GAO thinks that Iraq has failed to meet all but 3 of its 18 mandated benchmarks. But that's because the GAO is a bunch of girlie-men. Don't they know that we are all supposed to -- say it with me now -- "Wait to hear what General Petraeus has to say!"

Well General Petraeus is speaking, to The Australian, and guess what: The Surge Is Working!

"We say we have achieved progress, and we are obviously going to do everything we can to build on that progress and we believe al-Qa'ida is off balance at the very least," he said.

At the "very least," he says. Pshaw. I think the thing I love most about General Petraeus is his modesty. Let's face it. He is kicking insurgent ass, over there.

Here are a few things the terrorists didn't know about General Petraeus when they provoked his wrath:

  • General Petraeus's tears cure cancer. Too bad he has never cried.

  • When the Boogeyman goes to sleep every night he checks his closet for General Petraeus.

  • General Petraeus can make a woman climax by simply pointing at her and saying "hooah."

  • General Petraeus does not sleep. He waits.

  • General Petraeus once tried to sue Burger King after they refused to put razor wire in his Whopper Jr., insisting that that actually is "his" way.

  • General Petraeus took my virginity, and he will sure as hell take yours. If you're thinking to yourself, "That's impossible. I already lost my virginity," then you are dead wrong.

  • General Petraeus can slam revolving doors.

  • General Petraeus doesn't have hair on his testicles, because hair does not grow on steel.

  • General Petraeus counted to infinity - twice.

  • When General Petraeus exercises, the machine gets stronger.

  • General Petraeus is allowed to talk about Fight Club.

  • General Petraeus sleeps with a night light. Not because General Petraeus is afraid of the dark, but because the dark is afraid of General Petraeus.

  • Water boils faster when General Petraeus watches it.

  • If General Petraeus is late, time better slow the fuck down.

  • When General Petraeus jumps in a lake, he doesn't get wet. The water gets Petraeus.

  • General Petraeus once ate three 72 oz. steaks in one hour. He spent the first 45 minutes having sex with his waitress.

  • General Petraeus refers to himself in fourth person.

  • Superman owns a pair of General Petraeus pajamas.

  • As a child, General Petraeus played Hungry Hungry Hippos with real hippos.

  • General Petraeus's sperm can penetrate 13 condoms, the birth control pill, a brick wall, and the 1975 Pittsburgh Steelers offensive line in order to impregnate a woman.

  • General Petraeus always gets blackjack. Even when he's playing poker.

  • The only thing we have to fear is fear itself... The only thing fear has to fear is General Petraeus.

But Curmudgette, you are saying, aren't these just warmed over Chuck Norris and Vin Diesel jokes? Yeah. What are you gonna do about it?

EVERYTHING is better with General Petraeus in it. The following video, for instance, is only good, if you close your eyes and imagine he's singing about General David Petraeus.

New Statement from ADL re: Armenian Genocide

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

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As per my previous entry, there has been some internal struggle at the Anti-Defamation League over the issue of the Armenian Genocide. Special thanks to dhonig from My Left Wing, for alerting me to this press release:

In light of the heated controversy that has surrounded the Turkish-Armenian issue in recent weeks, and because of our concern for the unity of the Jewish community at a time of increased threats against the Jewish people, ADL has decided to revisit the tragedy that befell the Armenians.

We have never negated but have always described the painful events of 1915-1918 perpetrated by the Ottoman Empire against the Armenians as massacres and atrocities. On reflection, we have come to share the view of Henry Morgenthau, Sr. that the consequences of those actions were indeed tantamount to genocide. If the word genocide had existed then, they would have called it genocide.

I have consulted with my friend and mentor Nobel Laureate Elie Wiesel and other respected historians who acknowledge this consensus. I hope that Turkey will understand that it is Turkey's friends who urge that nation to confront its past and work to reconcile with Armenians over this dark chapter in history.

Having said that, we continue to firmly believe that a Congressional resolution on such matters is a counterproductive diversion and will not foster reconciliation between Turks and Armenians and may put at risk the Turkish Jewish community and the important multilateral relationship between Turkey, Israel and the United States.

And while we're on the subject of dhonig, everyone MUST check out his latest cartoon. Brilliant.

ADL Shakeup Over Armenian Genocide

Monday, August 20, 2007

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Appearing at The Blogging Curmudgeon, My Left Wing, and the Independent Bloggers' Alliance.

From The Boston Globe:

At least two prominent board members of the regional Anti-Defamation League have resigned in protest over the national ADL's decision to fire the regional director for acknowledging the slaughter of Armenians during World War I as genocide.

Former chairman of the Polaroid Corp., Stewart L. Cohen, and City Council member Mike Ross told the Globe yesterday they could no longer be part of an organization with national leaders who refused to acknowledge the Armenian genocide and fired regional director, Andrew H. Tarsy, on Friday for taking a position in support of Armenian-Americans.

. . .

The resignations -- which may be the first of others to come -- were announced as members of the local Jewish and Armenian-American communities praised Tarsy and the regional board for taking stands recognizing the Armenian genocide and criticized the ADL's national director, Abraham H. Foxman, for taking a position out of step not just locally, but perhaps nationally.

If Foxman does not change his position and acknowledge the genocide, George Beilin, a past president of the North Shore Council of the B'nai B'rith Organization, called on the national leader to "resign immediately for the sake of the Jewish community in the United States and the world."

A brief history lesson (expurgated text from here):

For three thousand years, a thriving Armenian community had existed inside the vast region of the Middle East bordered by the Black, Mediterranean and Caspian Seas. The area, known as Asia Minor, stands at the crossroads of three continents; Europe, Asia and Africa. Great powers rose and fell over the many centuries and the Armenian homeland was at various times ruled by Persians, Greeks, Romans, Byzantines, Arabs and Mongols.

. . .

In the eleventh century, the first Turkish invasion of the Armenian homeland occurred. Thus began several hundred years of rule by Muslim Turks. By the sixteenth century, Armenia had been absorbed into the vast and mighty Ottoman Empire. At its peak, this Turkish empire included much of Southeast Europe, North Africa, and almost all of the Middle East.

As the Ottoman Empire crumbled, the Armenians began a push for reform, but the Sultan Abdul Hamid's response resulted in the massacre of over 100,000 Armenians. Armenian hope was renewed with the ascendancy of the Young Turks, who pressed for a constitutional government and human rights protections. But, when three of the Young Turks seized the levers of power, and embarked on a nationalist push for a new "Turanism," the problems for the Armenians began in earnest. The new government seized the weapons from the Armenian population and Armenian members of the Turkish military were reassigned to "slave labor battalions."

The decision to annihilate the entire population came directly from the ruling triumvirate of ultra-nationalist Young Turks. The actual extermination orders were transmitted in coded telegrams to all provincial governors throughout Turkey. Armed roundups began on the evening of April 24, 1915, as 300 Armenian political leaders, educators, writers, clergy and dignitaries in Constantinople (present day Istanbul) were taken from their homes, briefly jailed and tortured, then hanged or shot.

Next, there were mass arrests of Armenian men throughout the country by Turkish soldiers, police agents and bands of Turkish volunteers. The men were tied together with ropes in small groups then taken to the outskirts of their town and shot dead or bayoneted by death squads. Local Turks and Kurds armed with knives and sticks often joined in on the killing.

. . .

Then it was the turn of Armenian women, children, and the elderly. On very short notice, they were ordered to pack a few belongings and be ready to leave home, under the pretext that they were being relocated to a non-military zone for their own safety. They were actually being taken on death marches heading south toward the Syrian Desert.

Roughly 75 percent of the million plus Armenians marched through the desert died of starvation, dehydration, and other causes; many of them children and elderly. In the end an estimated 1.5 million Armenians were determined to have been killed by massacre and march. The Turkish government continues to deny the genocide of the Armenian people.

Accordingly, I have placed my death-head formation in readiness -- for the present only in the East -- with orders to them to send to death mercilessly and without compassion, men, women, and children of Polish derivation and language. Only thus shall we gain the living space [Lebensraum] which we need. Who, after all, speaks to-day of the annihilation of the Armenians?

-- Adolf Hitler

The Mayberry Machiavellis Strike Again

Sunday, August 19, 2007

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I wonder if this little revelation had anything to do with Karl Rove's sudden realization that he has a family.

The House Oversight Committee is investigating whether the White House's political briefings to at least 15 agencies, including to the Justice Department, the General Services Administration and the State Department, violated a ban on the use of government resources for campaign activities.

Under the Hatch Act, Cabinet members are permitted to attend political briefings and appear with members of Congress. But Cabinet members and other political appointees aren't permitted to spend taxpayer money with the aim of benefiting candidates.

. . .

The briefings are part of the legacy of White House political adviser Karl Rove, who announced this week that he is stepping down at the end of the month to spend more time with his family. Despite Rove's departure, investigations into the briefings are expected to continue.

From the Irony Files

Friday, August 17, 2007

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I have been unable to muster much interest in the battle between Bill O'Reilly and the Daily Kos. O'Reilly's penchant for distortion and slander has become so old hat, that most of the time I can muster neither outrage nor the belly laugh most of it deserves. This, however, is a riot. One of my dear friends from My Left Wing, dhonig, is the latest to be defamed by Bill-O and the underlying premise turns reality squarely on its head. The falafel lover (and, yes, that's a double-entendre) has accused dhonig of, hold on to your hat, anti-Semitism.

Let me back up and explain why that is hilarious, aside from the fact that dhonig is Jewish. I don't think I've ever encountered anyone more sensitive to the subteties of anti-Semitism than dhonig. I personally have accused him of seeing it where it just does not exist. In fact, I've told him that he begins to sound like this to me:

I can't think of a worse kossack to quote in trying to prove your case, as O'Reilly is, that anti-Semitism is rampant on Daily Kos. Here is dhonig explaining how Bill-O took a segment out of his diary and twisted it completely out of context:

Ever since the 2006 Lebanon war, anti-Semitism became a significant topic, particularly in the I/P debates. People on one side of the debate cried "anti-Semitism," and people on the other side (in my personal opinion far more) inserted prophylactic demands "don't call me an anti-Semite but ...." It got so heated that I decided to write a diary, ultimately several of them, to distinguish between criticism of Israel, even criticism with which I vehemently disagreed, and actual anti-Semitism. This particular diary was a response to claims that people were too quick to make the anti-Semitism accusation, and that there really wasn't any on Daily Kos. Rather, the theory went, there was just legitimate criticism of Israel, and Israel's supporters were trying to shut it down with false accusations.
Okay, let's go straight to the money quote, shall we?

If Jews love the US so much- how come their #'s in the US military are dismal? Instead of selling ones soul to be diamond brokers, investment bankers

Did I write that? Nope. Actually, that was one of the hateful quotes I was criticizing. It is, of course, also worth noting that it was troll-rating into oblivion, 0 to 15.

The punchline is that dhonig is an attorney and seriously considering a law suit. I think he should sue. As noted by dhoning here, you can make your own opinion on that known here.

Not surprisingly Keith Olbermann has picked up on the controversy. Enjoy:

"Fairlane Train"

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

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Memory: I can take my head and strike it on a wall

-- James Dickey, excerpt, "The Shark's Parlor"

I think listening to music is the only thing I have the sustained mental energy for these days. So, in that spirit, I bring you Billy Hector. I used to go see Billy Hector and the Fairlanes about once a month. Diane brought that swathe of memory rippling to the surface recently in one of her music sharing threads on My Left Wing. I'm finding myself listening to this again and again.

"These Four Walls"

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

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Hello all. Sorry for the paucity in publishing these days. I've been skewered on the dual prongs of working motherhood. I have a very bored, frustrated five year old on my hands. Summer camp was canceled. Ah well. School will be back in session soon. I must admit I'm looking forward to a little me time and the ability to string a few thoughts together in a row. In the meanwhile, please enjoy a little Shawn Colvin. I think she's been doing some of the best work of her career.

Jack Bauer: Librul Weenie

Monday, August 06, 2007

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Kiefer Sutherland, Rolling Stone no. 998, April 2006

Looks like the darling of the of the far right wing is going green.

It may sound like a publicity stunt, but Fox spokesman Chris Anderson says the network isn't after bigger ratings. "We are publicizing '24's' commitment to climate change for two reasons and two reasons only: to inspire the public to take global warming seriously and hopefully to motivate other studios to make changes to their production practices as well," he says.

. . .

The show's electricity bills will go toward renewable-energy credits that will bring a share of wind, solar and water power to Los Angeles's grid. A diesel-powered soundstage will be converted to electricity, thus lessening the show's contribution to the local air pollution problem, and the show's five location scouts will be given Priuses to drive. Scripts, schedules and memos -- which used to be hand-delivered by car -- will be sent via e-mail.

The "24" page at now features energy conservation tips and a public service announcement about global warming featuring Kiefer Sutherland; more information will be posted when the show airs in January. Plus, climate change will be incorporated into the series' plot (which just might scare some viewers into taking action).

But what if that action is changing the channel? As noted here, here, here, and here, Jack Bauer is the n'est plus ultra of wing-nut heroes. (I love to speak French when I talk about wing-nuts. Drive's 'em crazy.) Will they still idolize him when he starts talking like a dirty hippy?

What ever will Jack Bauer enthusiast and global warming skeptic Tom Tancredo say? Stay tuned.