December 30, 2005
— Ace Via Allah:
A 19-year-old PETA staffer has legally changed his name to KentuckyFriedCruelty.com.
Chris Garnett, youth outreach coordinator for the People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, said he changed his name in support of the group's anti-KFC campaign.
"People don't believe me at first when I tell them my name, but it never fails to spark a discussion," Garnett, er, KentuckyFriendCruelty.com, said in a statement.
You know what else sparks a discussion? Wearing a wizard's cap and smearing your body with a mixture of orange marmalade and ferret-piss.
In related news, I'm legally changing my name to IShouldHaveAtrios'TrafficAndGoogleAdsShouldPayMeMore.com.
That should spark discussions, too. Can't be any worse than my actual given name, Steve Don't Bother Talking To Me As I'm Boring And Self-Absorbed And Absolutely Incompetent In Bed McCutcheon. That long middle name, by the way, is Gaellic. It means "Brave Warrior." But no one ever sticks around long enough to ask me about that.
Unrelated But Funny: The other day someone suggested that trolls be spoken to only in catchphrases from Paul Anka, Pat O'Brien, and, of course, Chris Klein.
— Ace I'm still updating top headlines in the sidebar. I don't know if it's useful to anyone, but I just wanted to point it out to those who don't know about it.
— Ace Jay Tea pretty much sums it up:
I've lived through and noted numerous cycles of the "Mideast Peace Process." They all seem to go the same way -- the world pressures both sides to talk. Israel makes concessions as "signs of good faith." They talk. A wonderfully intricate process is discussed. At the conclusion, people announce that "peace is at hand" and Israel makes more concessions. Then the Palestinians start backing away from their commitments. They cite numerous reasons why they can't abide by what they just agreed to. Meanwhile, they and the rest of the world press Israel to keep its commitments, and to continue on schedule. Then the terrorist attacks resume. Everyone urges Israel to "show restraint" (a demonstration that is usually measured in dead Israelis). Finally, Israel has enough and hits back, at which point they are blamed for "destroying the peace process" -- no one ever seems to note that every single step was taken by the Israelis, while the Palestinians did absolutely nothing. And those concessions the Israelis made? They're presumed permanent, and merely move the starting point for the next useless cycle.
I'd add something else. The Palestinians demand land. Land can be granted at one point or compensated for. Surely no one is unaware that when Actual Genuine Real No-Faking Peace does come, the US is going to be on the line for billions of dollars.
The Israelis, on the other hand, demand to be left alive. I am not aware of any possibility of resurrecting the dead, even if it's a dead Jew from Bethlehem (with one possible exception).
I don't care about whatever historical grievances you have -- none justify the murder of civilians. If the Palestinians restricted themselves to attacking soldiers and policemen, well, I wouldn't be happy about that, but I would recognize it as guerilla warfare rather than terrorist murder.
But they don't. And at this point, with so many corpses to their credit, my resevoir of pity for the poor dispossessed Palestinians is all tapped out.
— Ace The original story about the Syrian VP resigning was oooold. As in, back in June old. It's old news. Yahoo screwed up by linking it as if it were fresh news, and I followed them in that error. (I hadn't known he'd resigned, or if I read it at one point, I'd forgotten.)
Syrian President Bashar al-Assad threatened former Lebanese premier Rafiq Hariri just months before he was assassinated, Syria's ex-vice president Abdel Halim Khaddam said
"I will destroy anyone who tries to hinder our decisions," Assad told Hariri during a meeting in Damascus, Khaddam told Dubai-based television Al-Arabiya in an interview from Paris.
Khaddam said the meeting took place a few months before the February 14 assassination of Hariri in a Beirut bomb blast for which a UN probe has implicated Syrian intelligence.
The Syrian intelligence services could not have carried out such an operation without the approval of Assad, he said, when asked if the head of state could have been unaware.
"No Syrian security service could take such a decision unilaterally."
So, I guess, when he said he'd have more to say, he's saying some of it now.
Although, I've got to say, I think I've read this story before too. But Yahoo says it's only 30 minutes old. Maybe he's just adding new details, or saying it again, or saying it more forcefully. But I think this, too, isn't exactly fresh news.
Thanks to Allah for the correction.
Original post follows:
[Link no longer links to old story] Blame Bush for causing this instabilty in the Middle East:
Veteran Syrian Vice President Abdel Halim Khaddam, widely regarded as the architect of his government's Lebanon policy before its troop pullout in April, announced his resignation.
"I have decided to resign," he told the Dubai-based satellite television Al-Arabiya in an interview from Paris.
Yeah... I think if I was going to make such an announcement, I'd do it from Paris, too.
Khaddam, 73, said he was "convinced that the process of development and reforms, be they political, economic or administrative, will not succeed" and that he preferred to choose "the motherland" over "the regime".
"I have many things to say, serious things, when the time is right," he said, adding that his relationship with President Bashar al-Assad was "amicable".
We'll see how amicable it is when he tries to kill you. Even in Paris.
I hope he's had the smarts to contact the CIA about protection and a possible quick escape route, should one become necessary.
Thanks to Allah.
I Don't Suppose This Has Anything To Do With Anything Update: (Where?)
The chief U.N. investigator into the assassination of former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri said in remarks published Saturday that he believed Syrian authorities were behind the killing.
It was the first time that Detlev Mehlis has unequivocally accused Syria of responsibility for Hariri's assassination since opening the U.N. probe in June.
Now, if the VP was the "architect of his government's Lebanon policy," presumably he had a hand in the assassination. So he's not a good guy.
But he is, it seems, about to tell us where the bodies were buried, perhaps because he fears that Assad is about to go down like Jake Gyllenhallenhyllenhaal after not having a "fishing trip" for a full year, or perhaps he's next on the list of inconvenient people to "commit suicide" due to their suspected involvement in the killing.
— Ace Wow. Not only does Bush unilaterally invade a country for his oil buddies, he peacefully, diplomatically gets countries to renounce WMD's and terrorism for his oil buddies, too.
Thanks to Allah.
— Ace Grain of salt suggested.
It could be more German silliness. It could be a deliberate leak by the Bush Administration to rattle the Iranians by rattling the sabre.
It could, of course, also be true.
Hallelujah, the birds might soon be flying!
— Ace I should be interested in this, but, you know, it's Canada.
The Liberals' struggle to hang on to power has been badly, perhaps fatally, damaged by the RCMP's blockbuster confirmation halfway through the campaign that it has launched a criminal investigation of a possible tax leak from Finance Minister Ralph Goodale's office.
The leak (if I remember correctly, which is always in great doubt) was basically a tip-off to well-connected friends and political hacks that there would be major tax-code changes, and perhaps they'd better do what they could in advance to avoid the consequences of those changes.
Coming on the heels of a series of Liberal gaffes and miscues, the announcement from the Mounties this week has the feel of a tipping point in an election battle that had previously been almost impossible to handicap.
The story tries manfully to pique my interest:
"This is like a live grenade has just been thrown down Paul Martin's pants," remarked Frank Graves, president of EKOS Research Associates. "I think the potential fallout from this is quite significant as in, you know, might lose election rather than win."
But, still: Canada. Just not interested. Canada is like the Ringo Starr of the Beatles. No, wait, that's not fair to Mr. Starr. Canada is like the Richard Marx of the Beatles.
— Ace The grenade thrower in Georgia, that is.
Thanks to Right Rainbow, who gets off the joke.
I'd repeat it, but then, I'm already being sued for infringing on Atrios' copyright on the words "Open Thread."
— Ace DB sent me what he calls the "Best AMV ever." I didn't know what an AMV was. Now, through the magic of context clues, I have figured out it means "Animated Music Video."
Here's a death-metal song (kinda good) with cutesy Japanese anime as a visual. I have to issue a Content Warning, because you know that Japanese animation often drifts into... strange areas. There are suggestions of sex and of course buying strange items on the internet, and it all involves those 12 year old girls that anime always features... so, not necessarily work safe.
Anyway, those warnings out there: Just plain weird.
— Ace This has been endlessly hashed out by now, but a confession is in order: I was sloppy and careless in titling the NSA poll post to include the word "warrantless." That wasn't acutally in the question posed, as a number of liberal critics pointed out (and a number of conservative readers here agreed).
I didn't try to sneak anything past anyone; it was just sloppiness. I didn't actually read the full question -- mistake number one -- and I just tried to come up with a title to alert people to what the poll was about. It wasn't a poll about eavesdropping, generally; it was about the specific eavesdropping conducted by Bush (although, in fairness, the question posed is open to criticism for not fully explaining the situation). I came up, in three seconds, with "Warrantless Eavesdropping" as a way to describe it. Warrantless was a mischaracterization, and, in fact, so was "Eavesdropping," as we're talking about wireless intercepts, by and large.
But, pressed for a title, I should have relied upon the actual question more, and the actual title Rasmussen gave the article (which of course did not include the word "warrantless.") Instead, I tried to quickly come up with my own digest of the article, a digest which it turned out was misleading or just plain false.
I did change the headline about fifteen minutes after I became aware of the complaint at all. That post simply got buried; I never revisited it, nor did I notice all the argumentation going on in the thread. I saw some arguments going on in the "Most Recent Comments" section, but I didn't pay them much mind, assuming all the fuss was about Rasmussen's question itself, not about my headline in particular.
Incidentally, I think Rasmussen's question was perfectly fair, for reasons I won't bother getting into, as this is about my error.
I shouldn't have written "Warrantless" in the title. Sloppy. Loose shit. Incorrect. Misleading. I did change it once I realized there was a genuine complaint about the headline (my defenders on the site were defending my integrity while also conceding I was wrong in this particular case, which is a pretty good tip-off you're on shaky ground at the very least). Incidentally, the post title is still the same on RSS feeds, I'm told, but if you actually click on the link, you'll see it was changed.
But one point: At some point in one of the threads, someone posted as me, claiming to be making a statement based on advice from my legal counsel, and concluded "this thread is locked." I was going to pitch a bitch about that, but, let's face it, posting under another's name for humorous effect is something that gets done around here a lot, so I didn't say anything. I didn't see the humor in it, but I decided not to make a big case about it. I had myself posted as "Woody Guthrie" and "Dorothy Guthrie" and "Brick Tamerland" in the same thread, so I really couldn't get all outraged someone had swiped my name for this pot.
But I didn't write it. DB tells me that some liberals are making an issue of this post, apparently over the "thread is locked" part, suggesting I attempted to stop discussion in a thread about my error. Well, I didn't write that, and the thread is not locked, and you may all continue discussing my error.
I don't think I've ever "locked" a thread in my history, nor ruled some discussions out of bounds (except for Downtown Lad challenging me to a fight, and then threatening to call the cops when I agreed that I would kick his ass).
Just to clarify: I was wrong, but I didn't mean to be deceptive; I was sloppy, which is itself blameworthy. Just not as blameworthy as deliberate deceit. But I did correct fifteen minutes after finding out about the complaint (my first words on it were something like "yeah, you've got a decent point about wording," though I did go on to defend the wording). And I never, ever said "the thread is locked," and I'd appreciate if people didn't steal my monicker any more, except in cases where the humor -- and the falsity -- of the post is clear.
I actually assume that the person who wrote that is a regular, and was trying to be funny. Well, it wasn't really funny, and it wasn't over-the-top enough to alert people to the fact that it was a false-attribution post. And it included something that now has people thinking I don't allow free discussion: "this thread is locked."
Please don't do that again. If you want to post by "ace" saying "I'm a big retard and like the smell of poop," go ahead, that's obviously parody. But don't write a post that can easily be mistaken for a real post by me. If you're not sure it's clear that it's a parody, say it's by "Ace Junior" or "Ace's Left Nut" or something.
Multiple Layers Of Painstaking Editorial Fact-checking Update: I had an idea to ad that I don't have the "multiple layers of etc." that the MSM does, but in fact I do-- I have readers who point out my errors, some helpfully, some just to hurt (like JeffB.), and of course liberal critics as well. The main reason this one took so long to correct is I just didn't even realize I'd made an error.
I don't read every thread. I read some, skim others, and don't read others at all.
If you do see some glaring error that needs correction, and a notification to that effect in a thread doesn't seem to be attracting my attention, please, if it's not too much trouble, alert me by email. I usually don't allow errors to go uncorrected out of stubborness or laziness; it's usually just because I don't know about them. So if there's a big error, one you have to concede to a liberal critic is an error, and yet I'm not correcting it, please drop me a line to make sure I know I've goofed.
I allow a lot of typos to go by -- like "auf widersehen" yesterday, with the missing "e" after the "i" -- out of laziness, and a fundamental belief that a slapdash, sloppy approach to things is, in some retarded way, charming. But not big things.
BTW: How hard was this confession to make? Not hard in the least. The good thing about making so many errors is that you kind of get used to making corrections.
Clarification: I only posted as Woodie Guthrie once. Allah had quoted Anchorman about taking out Woodie Guthrie's mom, Dorothy Guthrie, out for a nice seafood dinner and then never calling her again, and I posted as "Woodie Guthrie" to do the follow-up line: "Dorothy Guthrie is a saint!" In context, I thought it would be clear that this wasn't Woodie Guthrie, since he wasn't in on the Anchorman joke, and certainly wouldn't play along. Not when he had such good put-downs to offer, like "PUSSY" ever five seconds.
Steve_from_hb just asked if I had been posting as "Woodie Guthrie" to stir controversy or something, so I thought I'd clarify. No, he was real. Real, and dumb. I didn't post as him, except that one time, just to complete the Anchorman exchange. I don't do fake-troll postings to create arguments or whatever (and, by the way, Hoke Malokey continues to be real). I just did that one little line to complete the joke.
Related: Cop Attacked By Angry Chihuahuas.
Thanks to both Steve and CG.
— Ace It's the Seattle Times' most read article.
And four more of its top twenty articles concerned this case too.
He's got a Friday link dump, including a link to an article about strange voting patterns. Parents of daughters, it seems, will typically switch their political allegiances for Princess-- the more daughters in a household, the more likely parents will vote liberal.
That's a study of British voting patterns, but I can't think of an obvious reason why the same pussification-by-Princess wouldn't also have at least some influence here.
— Ace Dana Priest strikes again:
This time, the Washington Post uses its contacts in the CIA to expose an umbrella program called GST, the code for a loose affiliation of dozens of programs designed to locate and fight terrorists abroad rather than wait for them to show up here. Nothing about the article stands out as a smoking gun, it never alleges anything specifically illegal, but Dana Priest writes the front-pager as a warning that the President has gone out of control in defending the US from attack...
This effort by Priest mirrors the slop served up by the NY Times on the NSA surveillance of international communications, except in one regard -- the activities described by Priest clearly fall under the category of the President's war powers. One cannot even claim the limited ambiguity of the NSA position on that point
More on the full story at Captain Ed, linked above.
To repeat myself: It is not Ms. Priest who is actually breaking the law here. It is her sources, determined to undermine the War Against Terror out of a partisan liberal animus against Bush. Ms. Priest should be subpoenaed and forced to reveal her sources, and locked up if she refuses to comply, not as punishment -- she is, after all, just doing her job, if perhaps insufficiently careful about national security -- but rather in order to get the names of the actual criminals in our national security apparatus.
— Ace A former British Ambassador to Uzbekistan is about to release an "explosive" book on the Clinton-inaugurated practice of "extraodinary renditions."
— Ace Finally.
Turns out the NY Times is not the only paper to have its leakers sources investigated. The Washington Post is reporting their CIA Prison story leaks are being investigated
The Justice Department has also opened a probe into whether classified information was illegally disclosed to The Washington Post, which reported on a network of secret CIA prisons in Eastern Europe and elsewhere.
December 29, 2005
— Ace Both fictional and real and hoax and not-really-robots-at-all, like Leanardo Da Vinci's Mechanical Knight's Armor.
Thanks, to, uhhh, "AssWeasel."
— Ace Republicans have virtually closed October's big favorability gap.
— Ace Kid's got balls. Two of them, right below his penis. (Where?)
"There is a struggle in Iraq between good and evil.... Those terrorists are not human, but pure evil."
In any decent world, that would be a kick-ass sort of thing to put on your college application, no?
Unfortunately, due to his lack of "nuance" or understanding of "root causes," it's probably going to be held against him.
— Ace This guy puts even Lord Atrios to shame:
If you have an envious streak, you probably shouldn't read this.
Too late for me. It's not too late for you.
Because chances are, Alex Tew, a 21-year-old student from a small town in England, is cleverer than you. And he is proving it by earning a cool million dollars in four months on the Internet.
Selling porn? Dealing prescription drugs? Nope. All he sells are pixels, the tiny dots on the screen that appear when you call up his home page.
The idea: turn his home page into a billboard made up of a million dots, and sell them for a dollar a dot to anyone who wants to put up their logo. A 10 by 10 dot square, roughly the size of a letter of type, costs $100.
So far they have bought up 911,800 pixels.
Oh, well, good for him. Musn't be envious. I wish him luck. He'll need it, because I just prayed to Satan that he be raped to death by a puma.
Thanks to Joel.
— Ace Since Jane Hamster is sending traffic to my NSA post, I thought I'd insert one of my favorite old pieces for her readers to enjoy. If you're new to the site, you probably haven't read it.
— Ace I've been linked by one of the bigger leftwingnut blogs over my post about the Rasmussen poll on telephone intercepts. She's very angry that I didn't parse the question to her liking and declare it a fraudulent right-wing Rethuglican push-poll. Mickey Kaus' raging liberal brother Steven also linked me from the Huffington Post for the same complaint.
I wouldn't mention this, except to say, "We might experience some turbulence... and then explode," and also because I found this hysterically funny:
He needs [the space for including the full question asked by Rasmussen] for violating Atrios's copyright.
Emphasis kinda mine... she emphasizes the "Atrios copyright" part as part of a link to this post, in which I post Atrios' six thousand open threads and two-word posts.
Can one copyright the words "Open Thread"? Apparently one can, according to the law offices of Jane Hamscher, Esq.
After calling me a wingnut, Ms. Hamsher displays her reasonable, non-winguttish credentials:
I swear, between the slavish, Stalin-esque love for totalitarianism and their contempt for private property, free enterprise and market capitalism these people are all just fucking communists.
She also includes a picture of Uncle Joe, in case you missed the point.
Violating Atrios' copyright. It is. To Laugh.
Ms. Hamsher, Atrios has to frigging write some actual copy before he can copyright it.
PS, Ms. Hamsher: You use the word "fucking" in your post. That's AoSHQ copyrighted material, there. Well, not copyrighted per se, but I can get you on unfair-trade-practices rap for infringing on my "brand identity." Expect a shifty-looking bald-headed man bearing papers in a blue wrap-around in your near future.
Also, given your sad attempts to be funny, I think I'll attempt to emulate your own "comedic stylings" and give you a Jane Hamscher sort of nickname.
How about "Jane Hamster"?
Oooooh, that's gold, baby! That's funny-- Margaret Cho funny.
"Jane Hamster." Man, sometimes I don't know where I come up with these zingers. Zow! Pah-zing! Bam!
Endorsed On "Jane Hamster's" Own Site Update:
Heh. Ace and I have been arch-nemeses at three different fora, starting with Slate's Fray back in 1998. The meltdowns were indeed legendary, and he is without a doubt one of the most dyspeptic people I've ever encountered on the internets. He is the Joker to my Batman, I suppose.
He is also extremely funny, and quite intelligent. He's just made the decision to use his powers for evil.
Thanks! And by the way, I have no idea who you are. To be my arch-nemesis, don't I need to have some awareness you exist?
My Mistake: I do know who Heywood J. is, but I wouldn't consider him a nemesis, arch or otherwise. I wasn't Joker to his Batman. More like, I was Batman to his Space Monkey Gleep.
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