April 30, 2004

Our Blogspot Address Isn't Quite Dead Yet
— Ace

Just to let you know: If you've come here from a link at one of the numerous blogs now linking to this address, we're still doing most of our blogging over at the blogspot address.

You can get there by clicking this Ace-o-Spades link.

We're going to switch here, pretty much exclusively, around Tuesday or Wednesday. Right after we figure out how to make our site-design look less, what's the word? ah yes: faggy.

If you're a blogger and you've changed your link to this address, don't bother changing back to www.ace-o-spades.blogspot.com. We'll be here soon enough. And thanks for being so quick to update your blogroll.

Posted by: Ace at 02:19 PM | Comments (38)
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April 29, 2004

The Ultimate Kerry Bumper-Sticker
— Ace

...comes courtesy of (who else?) Hillary Rodham Clinton, by way of bubble-headed Brit Tina Brown, who just slays us with the cute, "punny" title Taking the GOP Bait, Hook, Line, and Stinker.

Stinker? How does she do it?

At any rate, our hearts soared when we read this delectable quote from Hillary Clinton. What's the best part of the quote? The damning-with-no-praise-at-all for John Kerry, or the scary "Just do what you're told" message to the party faithful?

"You don't have to fall in love," Hillary Rodham Clinton reportedly reproved a top Democratic fundraiser who was recently moaning about Kerry's lackluster performance as a candidate. "You just have to fall in line."

John Kerry

You don't have to fall in love. You just have to fall in line.

Best. Slogan. Ever.

The quote is almost too good to be true. We'd go so far as doubting it was actually said -- no one is that honest and pithy and creepy off-the-cuff -- except that it is attributed to Hillary Rodham Clinton.

Which tends to make it much more plausible.

Photoshoppers, start your photoshopping!

Where's Allah Pundit when you need him? Probably arranging for more Heavenly Hookers for suicide bombers.

Hat tip to Rosetta Stone for printing the article at The Perfect World.

Posted by: Ace at 05:03 PM | Comments (35)
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$6.2 Billion in UNSCAM Contracts "Mysteriously Vanish" When Requested for Review
— Ace

We haven't commented on UNSCAM, because we had nothing much to add to the good work being done in the blogosphere and the right-wing press, if nowhere else.

But now the GAO says that eighty percent of Saddam's contracts have just -- poof! -- vanished, "crippling" their efforts to investigate fraud.

All we can say is that the general excuse for press non-coverage of this sordid scam was that the scandal "didn't involve Americans" and "wasn't sexy enough for the news, TV or print."

Well, boys, now you've got all of the relevant evidence simply "disappearing." Does that sex it up for you enough? Or do we need a fat brunette on her knees?

We don't think the press will cover this any more than it's doing now. When the press says something isn't "sexy" enough for the full-court press, what they generally mean is "it can't be used as a club against Bush and/or the Religious Right."

If 6.2 billion trees are embezzled in a forest, but the press can't link them to Bush, do they make a noise? Apparently not.

Thanks to Instapundit, who has more commentary.

Posted by: Ace at 01:54 PM | Comments (31)
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April 28, 2004

Indymedia: Not Quite the "Fringe" the Liberals Claim It to Be
— Ace

This is an excellent Ben Shapiro article linked by Nick Kronos on The Perfect World.

The first half is stuff you've almost certainly read if you read blogs at all. It recounts the Hateful Left's vicious attacks on fallen hero Pat Tillman.

But it's the second half that's really interesting. Because, as much as the "reasonable left" would like to pretend that these people aren't a part of their movement, it turns out that the "reasonable left" keeps funding Indymedia with grant-money:

Yet the American left has neglected to excise the Indymedia cancer from its support base. In 2002, the left-leaning Ford Foundation gave Indymedia $50,000. The Tides Foundation has donated $376,000 to Indymedia, according to Frontpagemag.com. Two of the biggest donors to the Tides Foundation? George Soros, who has given over $15 million to Democratic causes during this election cycle, and Teresa Heinz Kerry. Ralph Nader is one of Indymedia's biggest supporters; his group, Public Citizen, is listed as on Indymedia.org as an "ally."

...

The Indymedia list of allies is impressive as well. It lists groups like Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting, Adbusters, ZNet, the Institute for Public Accuracy, and Corporate Watch.

It's funny, isn't it? When confronted with this vicious hate in the general media, these people will claim that Indymedia is merely a "fringe" group with no influence on policy.

And yet these same people list Indymedia as an "ally."

Well? Which is it, guys? Fringe-group to which you have no connection, and wish to "condemn in the strongest possible terms," or a trusted ally?

It seems that Indymedia's relationship with the "reasonable left" is very similar to Al Qaeda's relationship to Islam generally. For general public consumption, there are lots of pious pronouncements about fringe elements which are to be condemned, but then, for a different audience, when only the faithful are listening, an entirely different message altogether.

Posted by: Ace at 03:49 PM | Comments (22)
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Two Letters; Two Towers; Two Americas
— Ace

From Little Green Footballs, Pearl 2001:

Sept 11, 11:30 am
Sophie et al,

...I was riding in a cab down Broadway at 8:45 when the first plane flew over. I couldn't believe it, I heard the engines and looked up, it was just above the buildings, a small jet I thought, and a moment later, a boom. Tons of beautiful white paper drifted down on Manhattan. Our Democratic primary is today and my first thought was that a candidate had dropped political leaflets.

...

I directed the cab a few blocks further and saw an amazing sight, a beautiful day and the North Tower on fire. I got out of the cab and watched as one person after another jumped to their deaths 90 stories up as the flames hit them. Behind me was the cavalry, a river of sirens and lights careening down the avenues -- ambulances, Harleys, ladder trucks, black & whites-- weaving through traffic, all throttle and brake, honking, cursing, firemen craning their heads out the windows to look upwards, gaping at the damage, radio to the ear. It was the last thing they would never remember.

I turned away and was staring at the South Tower when the second plane hit. The concussion took my courage. It was an explosion beyond description, I felt that it was 1945 and I was in Berlin, or maybe Pearl Harbor in '41.

I could feel the heat three hundred yards away; everything on four or five floors, people and office equipment, came raining down on the crowd. We all ran north while it fell and got away before it hit because it was high up. As I glanced back I saw the contents of the floors on fire, people killed without a second to consider their lives....

A different sort of letter, courtesy of Alarming News:

But your most disgraceful case was in Somalia; where -- after vigorous propaganda about the power of the USA and its post cold war leadership of the new world order -- you moved tens of thousands of international force, including twenty eight thousands American solders into Somalia. However, when tens of your solders were killed in minor battles and one American Pilot was dragged in the streets of Mogadishu you left the area carrying disappointment, humiliation, defeat and your dead with you. Clinton appeared in front of the whole world threatening and promising revenge, but these threats were merely a preparation for withdrawal.

You have been disgraced by Allah and you withdrew; the extent of your impotence and weaknesses became very clear. It was a pleasure for the "heart" of every Muslim and a remedy to the "chests" of believing nations to see you defeated in the three Islamic cities of Beirut , Aden and Mogadishu.

-- from Osama bin Ladin's Fatwa against the West

And no, we're really not trying to pin 9-11 on Clinton. Clinton was guilty of many things -- a neglectful, Panglossian procrastinating style of foreign policy high among them -- but one can't say Clinton "caused" 9-11. Clinton was America's leader, the man America installed as CINC. To the extent Clinton is to blame, we're all to blame.

But it is worth remembering that Clinton "solved" the Al Qaeda problem by lobbing cosmetic cruise missiles at camels. That didn't actually solve the problem, but it did solve the political problem-- it reassured the nation that we were "doing something" about terrorism.

We weren't really, of course. But in terms of politics, those ineffectual missiles "solved" Clinton's problem.

What is galling to us is that it seems many Americans want to go back to precisely that sort of "solution" -- the phony "solution" of merely getting a problem off the front-pages of newspapers while doing absolutely nothing to actually solve it, and indeed making it worse by encouraging it to fester and metastasize.

The hatred is directed at the perpetrators of these horrific crimes.

But there's another feeling, too. It's not hatred, but it is nearly as intense an emotion, because it's directed not at some barely-glimpsed lunatic cultist in the faraway Kush, but towards people we talk to everyday.

It's a feeling of frustration and disgust.

Frustration and disgust at those who see 9-11 as merely a tricky political problem to be "gotten around" in order to deal with the real problems in America -- making sure no 14 year old ever need ask a parent permission to abort a child, making sure teachers have all the chalk and crayons they claim they have to buy out of pocket.

John Edwards was right. There are indeed Two Americas, but not the two Americas he bloviated about to such ringing media claim.

America is divided into two camps.

Those who want to deal with the actual problem confronting us, and those who merely want to deal with the political problem that arises from that actual problem.

Posted by: Ace at 12:27 PM | Comments (30)
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Top Ten Cool Things About Munuvia
— Ace

10. "Search" function allows you to quickly find and enjoy our oevure of 67,854 Oliver Willis fat-jokes

9. More stable commenting feature means that you won't have to "Say and Pray" when you hit the post-button

8. Advanced Picture-in-Picture fuction allows you to continue scanning Ace of Spades headlines while watching bootleg Brazillian dog-porn

7. "Extended Entry" feature -- which shows just a part of a lengthy article, requiring you to click "continue" to see the rest -- allows us to write overlong, amateurishly self-indulgent pieces that you don't even have to scroll past in order to ignore

6. No longer will you have to remember confusing "www.ace-o-spades.blogspot.com" address; now you'll merely have to write a complex mnemonic song to remember "www.ace.mu.nu" (possible rhymes for "mu.nu": voodoo; Jews Knew (hey, it worked for Amiri Baraka))

5. Fish don't fry in the kitchen; beans don't burn on the grill

4. Clicking on the blog-title banner will bring you back to the homepage from the archives-- now there's an innovation

3. The fact that Wonkette is not on Munuvia means we're still operating in a rich target environment

2. Pixy Misa's major bandwidth means that we won't get our servers blown out when Instapundit finally links us (fingers crossed!)

...and the Number One Cool Thing About Munuvia...

1. There's no commitment required for signing up, and we got a really cool football-phone out of the deal


Posted by: Ace at 02:00 AM | Comments (23)
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Specter Wins
— Ace

51%-49%.

We were thisclose. We had it, but we lost it.

Because about 15,000 or so conservatives desperately wanted to unseat Specter but even more desperately didn't want to unseat themselves from their couches.

Sorry, it's true.

Posted by: Ace at 01:51 AM | Comments (17)
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Our New Home
— Ace

Well, as you can see, we've partly moved into our cool new digs here at Munuvia, but we're still in the middle of unpacking. We'll probably be posting both here and over at the blogspot address until at least the weekend.

We'd like to give a huge thanks to Pixy, proprietor of Munuvia, and creater of the Ambient Irony blog. He's kind of like our current reclusive, mysterious benefactor, Mr. Tranh, except he's not not quite so reclusive nor so mysterious.

And thanks a lot to Miss Apropos, who was kind enough to suggest our little jag-around site to Pixy.

Posted by: Ace at 01:38 AM | Comments (33)
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April 27, 2004

Consumer Confidence Surges
— Ace

For some time, we've seen confidence climb, only to be knocked back down after a disappointing jobs report. Confidence would climb, heralding a quickening recovery; but then the jobs report would undermine that confidence, delaying a full-scale boom.

But finally both jobs and confidence seem to be in good sync, and they might finally begin reinforcing each other:

NEW YORK (CBS.MW) -- U.S. stocks were solidly higher at midday Tuesday, boosted by bullish news on consumer confidence and home sales as well as another dose of good earnings numbers.

"On the fundamental side, it's a pretty positive backdrop here," said Joe Liro, equity strategist at Stone & McCarthy. "We have a solid economy, a Fed that still shows signs of being relatively patient ... and you've got just absolutely great earnings numbers."

...


The Conference Board reported that its consumer confidence index improved to 92.9 in April from 88.5 in March while the number of Americans who said jobs were hard to get fell to its lowest level since November 2002. Wall Street economists expected the index to remain steady at about 88.7, according to a survey conducted by. See Economic Report.

News on existing home sales was also good with the National Association of Realtors reporting that sales rose 5.7 percent in March to 6.48 million units, well ahead of economists' forecasts for a 1 percent rise to 6.18 million units.

"Today, for some reason, the fact that we got strong economic numbers didn't seem to rattle investors about the prospects of higher rates," Liro said.

Posted by: Ace at 10:48 PM | Comments (19)
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Al Qaeda Chem-Bomb Plotter Confesses Iraqi Training
— Ace

This is huge:

At least one of the al Qaida plotters arrested in Jordan earlier this month as part of a weapons of mass destruction plot that Jordanian officials say could have killed 80,000 people revealed on Monday that he was trained in Iraq before the U.S. invaded in March 2003.

In a confession broadcast on Jordanian television, the unnamed WMD conspirator revealed, "In Iraq, I started training in explosives and poisons. I gave my complete obedience to [Abu Musab al] Zarqawi," the al Qaeda WMD specialist whose base of operations was in Iraq.

Excerpts from the WMD conspirator's confession broadcast by ABC's "Nightline" late Monday show that the WMD plot was planned and trained for in Iraq more than a year before the U.S. invasion.

"After the fall of Afghanistan," the WMD plotter said, "I met Zarqawi again in Iraq." U.S. forces vanquished the Taliban government in Kabul in Dec. 2001 - 15 months before the U.S. invasion of Iraq.

"Some of the details appear to be fairly significant in terms of the planning," reported "Nightline's" Chris Bury. "$170,000, a lot of meetings, getting instructions from people in Iraq, people inside Syria."

"This doesn't appear to be a mom and pop operation," he added.

Let us mention the necessary caveats: The pro-war right has prematurely claimed vindication on stories that didn't pan out. Remember those "secret Iraqi documents" claiming a direct meeting between Saddam and bin Ladin?

And sure, anyone being interrorgated -- especially in a non-Western country -- can be induced to confess to anything, given enough... incentives.

Still: if this checks out, this absolutely vindicates the pro-war right, and rubbishes the constant bleating of "no connection between Iraq and Al Qaeda" of the anti-war, pro-appeasement left.

Posted by: Ace at 10:31 PM | Comments (18)
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Another Test
— Ace

Why the heck is my sidebar partly on one side and partly on the other?

Posted by: Ace at 10:30 PM | Comments (23)
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Test
— Ace

Testing.

Posted by: Ace at 10:19 PM | Comments (20)
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April 18, 2004

She laid her docile Crescent down
— Ace

Emily Dickinson

She laid her docile Crescent down
And this confiding Stone
Still states to Dates that have forgot
The News that she is gone—

So constant to its stolid trust,
The Shaft that never knew—
It shames the Constancy that fled
Before its emblem flew—

[Is it just me, or was Emily Dickinson doing some really good weed when she wrote this stuff?]

Posted by: Ace at 08:03 AM | Comments (49)
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