Interviews, Articles, Etc.
T-shirts & Swag
My Wish List (read this first)
Body and Soul
The Talent Show
Support this site:
if you buy anything at all from Powell's through this link...
...or from Amazon through this one...
...I get a small kickback.
The Bitter Shack of Resentment
Mikhaela Blake Reid
Talking Points Memo
A Tiny Revolution
News and commentary
Center for American Progress
Daily War News
Soldiers for the Truth
Working For Change
April 11, 2003
Did I blink and miss this one?
Somebody just sent me this link--to an amendment to remove "the limitation on the number of terms an individual may serve as President."
(Update) My friend Bob Harris explains:
Not a Bushite plot; Rep. Jose Serrano (D-NY16-Bronx), has been introducing this for years.
Bob, by the way, is somebody I've been trying to convince to start a blog for quite awhile. In lieu of that, I'm going to ask him to take over my duties for a week or two in early June, when I'll be taking some time off.
Is irony dead, or merely resting?
"It's an amazing thing, when you see a person wounded, sitting there in a wheel chair or bound up in bandages...a young man, look you in the eye and say, 'I can't wait to get back to my unit. I hope I heal fast enough to get back to Iraq.'"
The road ahead
Gary Kamiya writing in Salon:
Why should we celebrate? Because what happens to those Iraqis is more important than our political beliefs. Even if -- especially if -- we opposed this war, even if we are disgusted with and deeply suspicious of the U.S. administration, we should celebrate. Their fate matters more.
I think it is less likely that postwar Iraq will be forgotten in the way that Afghanistan has been largely forgotten, because I don't actually believe that the "liberation of the Iraqi people" has ever been anything more than a happy side-effect of the war. The powers that be have agendas at which we can only make educated guesses--to establish a strategic foothold, to secure control over vital resources--but it's probably safe to say that setting up an independent democracy whose decisions we will respect even if they are contrary to US interests is not highest on the list. Which is exactly why it's important to demand that our leaders fulfill their promises of liberation and democracy in the days ahead.
Signs of the times
What would you do if an anti-war protester stopped you on the way home in rush hour?
April 10, 2003
Oils well that ends well
Don't blame me, blame skippy. I stole his title in order to link to his post. (Scroll down, his permalinks don't seem to be working right.)
We don't need no steenkin' facts
NEW YORK - Thousands of construction workers and firefighters packed a noontime rally at ground zero Thursday in support of the war in Iraq (news - web sites) which, to many of them, began right there on Sept. 11, 2001.
This is interesting
There always seems to be more to the story, doesn't there?
Where's Waldo--er, Saddam?
Steve Perry (editor of the Minneapolis City Pages and a longtime friend of the cartoon with which this site is loosely affiliated) is on the lookout. Go help out--and spend some time; he's got a lot of other good stuff up. (But you'd better bookmark his site until he does something about that unwieldy URL--you'll never remember it.)
In politics, you win debates for those with short attention spans by framing the question that leads to your favorite answer. The question now being framed is, could the U.S. military overwhelm the Iraqi resistance? Without question, anti-war skeptics like yours truly noted snags in the campaign as they came to light. But nobody said the U.S. couldn't prevail militarily. (I said that it seemed incredible, but maybe it could not.) Today the cakewalkers are crowing, but a week ago they were all denying they ever said the war would be easy.
And he doesn't like Steely Dan music either
The White House has nominated Alabama Attorney General William Pryor to be a U.S. Circuit Judge.
Pryor believes that vibrators should be illegal.
The cost of war
Here's a running tally.
From the Washington Post:
Yesterday's debate suddenly veered from guns to race when Cubin criticized a failed Democratic amendment that would have banned gun sales to drug addicts or people in drug treatment. After noting that her sons, ages 25 and 30, "are blond-haired and blue-eyed," she said: "One amendment today said we could not sell guns to anybody under drug treatment. So does that mean that if you go into a black community you can't sell any guns to any black person?"
The easy part is over
And let's acknowledge up front that it was easier than a lot of people expected--including many military and intelligence analysts--and let's posit that that's a Good Thing. The shooting's not over yet, and even Rumsfeld says that declarations of victory are premature--but if we soon reach a point at which no more American soldiers have to die on Iraqi soil, and no more Iraqi children have to have their arms blown off, then I think we can all be grateful for that.
The devil's just going to be in the details. Can order be restored and maintained? Is democracy something which by definition can even be "imposed"? Does the United States have a long enough attention span to see this one through? (To that last, I suspect the answer is yes--if only because the oil's there--though what "seeing it through" means remains anybody's guess.)
In the meantime, congratulations. You've just adopted approximately 23 million Iraqis.
April 09, 2003
The Daily Kos has some thoughts:
The US war against Saddam may soon be over, but that may only be the start of the Iraq war. There are millions of guns, rockets and mortars, billions of rounds of ammo, scattered across the country. No one knows who controls them or what they have planned. The Shia want control of their destiny, as do the Kurds, and the Sunnis may not be happy to lose power.
It ain't over 'til it's over. And this one's barely begun.
It's one of those days. Just so you know.
April 08, 2003
The ABC's of war
Mikhaela runs 'em down.
Riddle me this
Timothy Noah, writing in Slate:
In the March 11 New York Times, Neil MacFarquhar notes in passing, "Most Iraqi households own at least one gun." This comes as a shock to those of us who've been hearing for years from the gun lobby that widespread firearms ownership is necessary to prevent the United States from becoming a police state. Here, via the National Rifle Association's Web site, is Bill Pryor, attorney general of Alabama, decrying the "war on guns": "In a republic that promotes a free society, as opposed to a police state, one of the basic organizing principles is that individuals have a right of self-defense and a right to acquire the means for that defense."
If gun rights ensure our freedom, why has this war been necessary at all? Why didn't the people of Iraq simply rise up with their arms and demand their liberty? Isn't that how it works?
A beautiful mind
"But why should we hear about body bags and deaths and how many, what day it's going to happen, and how many this or what do you suppose? Oh, I mean, it's, not relevant. So why should I waste my beautiful mind on something like that?"
Now that's patriotism
"When I turn on the TV, I see wall-to-wall Humvees, and I'm proud," said Sam Bernstein, a 51-year-old antiquities dealer who lives in Marin County, Calif., and drives a Hummer H2, an S.U.V. sibling of the military Humvee.
For those with time on their hands
Here's the State Department's yearly candid look at human rights conditions around the world.
If one accepts that our primary purpose in Iraq is the liberation of an oppressed people, it looks like we may have some work ahead of us.
April 07, 2003
Police attack protesters
OAKLAND, Calif. - Police opened fire with non-lethal bullets at an anti-war protest at the Port of Oakland Monday morning, injuring several longshoremen standing nearby.
(Update) If you're under the impression that rubber bullets bounce harmlessly off their targets, you should go look at these pictures.
How bloggers scoop traditional journalism
By plagiarizing the work of actual journalists, apparently.
Afterthought: don't get me wrong, I love the blogs. But I'm really sick of the current meme that blogging is somehow on a par with journalism. As I've said before, the relationship of blogging to journalism is mostly the relationship of the wood tick to the deer.
Lord knows I believe in the need for media criticism, and there's no shortage of that in the blogs. And as compendiums of news sources in an era of information overload, they're invaluable. But with a few rare exceptions, it's just not journalism, and it's silly and self-aggrandizing to pretend otherwise.
Spinsanity takes on the fog of war.
The coalition against Iraq is larger than the one that conducted the first Gulf War.
There's much more.
I couldn't even begin to tell you how many times over the past six months or so I've received an email with some variation on the theme: don't you understand that Saddam has Weapons of Mass Destruction?
But as Robert Novak (yes, that Robert Novak) writes:
The real reason for attacking the Iraqi regime always has been disconnected from its public rationale. On the day after the U.S. launched the military strike that quickly liberated Afghanistan from the Taliban, my column identified Iraq as the second target in President Bush's war against terrorism. I did not write one word about weapons of mass destruction because not one such word was mentioned to me in many interviews with Bush policymakers.
Now, so far they haven't found any WMDs (caveat: at least significant ones, that I've heard about), which is, of course, why this war has gradually shifted from being About the Weapons of Mass Destruction to being About the Liberation of Iraq. And apparently it's been a successful rebranding:
A growing majority of Americans believe the war in Iraq is justified even if the United States does not find weapons of mass destruction. At the same time, public optimism about the progress of the fighting has surged as recent gains on the battlefield have eased fears that the allies will become bogged down in a long and costly war, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll.
It's entirely possible that WMDs will still turn up in Iraq. In which case, the Coalition of the Shilling will undoubtedly stretch a few muscles patting themselves on the back. But handily enough, even if they aren't--even if the primary justification for this war turns out to have been a lie--well, they'll still be patting themselves on the back.
(edited slightly for clarity)
(Update2) Or...maybe not..
Our informed citizenry
According to an LA Times poll:
Nearly eight in 10 Americans now accept the Bush administration's contention — disputed by some experts — that Hussein has "close ties" to Al Qaeda (even 70% of Democrats agree). And 60% of Americans say they believe Hussein bears at least some responsibility for the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks — a charge even the administration hasn't levied against him.
(Update) The same poll also tells us:
Exactly half said the United States should take military action against Iran if it continues to move toward nuclear-weapon development; 36% disagreed.
Americans are divided almost in half when asked whether the United States should take military action against Syria, which Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld has accused of providing Iraq with military supplies. Syria has denied the accusation. But 42% said the United States should take action if Syria, in fact, provides aid to Iraq, while 46% said no.
Movable Type 2.63
Dykes to Watch Out For
Get Your War On
Jack Chick Publications
Mikhaela Blake Reid
Tom the Dancing Bug
Too Much Coffee Man
Zippy the Pinhead
Other Friends of TMW