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June 09, 2008

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Who? Hamas, that's who.
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If it helps, Hamas renounced and rejected Obama after his speech at AIPAC last week.

Since the supposed link between them was based on their endorsement of him, not the other way 'round, got anything else?

I agree with kim and say nuts to trilobite.

Not only Hamas, but Hezbollah too, remember the Michelle-Barack fist-bump?

We all know he was a "street organizer" . . . in Gaza! Bringing in AK-47s by the crateful, training Hamas in terrorist tactics he learned as a grade schooler at his Madrassa in Indonesia, lecturing them on the finer points of constitutional law, especially those mandating same-sex marriages for everyone.

Then there were his heady days in the Illinois senate, where, by sneakily voting "present", he damaged the morale of the entire state of Illinois and caused their basketball team to lose to North Carolina in the 2005 NCAA tourney. Is there any greater terror, I ask you? I think not.

Except . . . for Jeremiah Wright!!! Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaahhhhhhhhhhhhh!!!!

I'm still trying to figure out who the "we" is who have virgins.

Bill Ayers and Jeremiah Wright, I guess, for extremely inclusive definitions of "aiding and abetting" and the definition of "hating America" that you would expect from Thomas Sowell (e.g., preferring the bus boycotters to the segregationists, or the workers to the factory owners).

luckily for my desire to stay within the posting rules, i can't think of any obscenities foul enough to describe what i think of Thomas Sowell.

I'm still trying to figure out who the "we" is who have virgins."

They haven't told you where the secret stash is yet hilzoy?

(I was not responding to hilzoy's question. Ayers and Wright may have virgins, or they may not. I have no information either way.)

Kim, do you mean the Hamas of April whose endorsement Obama secured after working tirelessly for months to impress them specifically, or the Hamas of May that, wink-wink, nudge-nudge, "retracted" their endorsement of him for toeing the AIPAC party line or some other paper-thin excuse to spare him the embarrassment that their public endorsement had brought?

Or do you mean the Hamas of the real world who stated that his policies regarding Palestinians seemed more favorable than those of his rivals until, ya know, he clarified that, no, they weren't particularly? The Hamas that Obama criticized Carter for meeting with?

DNFTT

I simply love the cringing anti-intellectualism in that Graber opinion piece. She points out a professor's scholarship (“I am interested in the shift in Western mentality from a dualist, hierarchical conceptual and social model of reality to a more holistic model, such as that expressed in ecosystem ecology.”) and then, basically, says: "Dualist? Where's the good and evil? Where're the traditional values? In fact, I don't even know what this sentence means!"

No, wait: favorite bit is when she re-posts a private email from a former professor of hers. Dig it:

Your writing is formulaic, utterly predictable, uninspired. As a member of the profession, I found it embarrassing. You will probably ‘interpret’ my response as a self-defensive riposte from a tenured radical, but it’s really not—if I thought your ‘point’ was important enough to attack, I would have done so publicly. I really just found it trite and banal.

Heh. Indeed.

You are out of date, ugh; it was a Catholic school in Indonesia, not a madrassah. He was enrolled as a Muslim so had exposure to Islam by the school, but I doubt that qualifies as a madrassah.

There is a revelatory story from 2004 by the religion reporter at the Chicago Tribune. Obama went out of his way to minimize his Muslim associations. He talked about his Catholic school in Indonesia, and about how his mother transferred her values to him. Fun to read, now four years later.

So, they denounced him after his AIPAC speech. What did they say before that? Sounds like he comforted them, even if he didn't directly, actively, aid them.
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cleek, it should be 'Do Not Eat the Troll's Bait'. Wassamatta, afraid of getting hung up?
=========================

You know, there was a comment and a half or so on another thread that caused me to think maybe I was being too hard on Kim. But then I come to this one and am immediately reassured about my judgment.

I'm still trying to figure out who the "we" is who have virgins.

Look for the purity riiiing
When obtaining a fiancée or spouse.
Remember somewhere our church's growing
our daughters learning to feed the kids and run the house,
We work hard but who's complaining.
Thanks to the S.R.T. we're paying our way.
So, always look for the purity ring,
it says we're able
to make it in the U.S.A.

Okay, re-reading that I've succeeded in creeping myself out. Go me.

kim, not to take over Gary Farber's role, but what "sounds like" Obama provided comfort to Hamas? Not anything I said. Who?

Actually, you didn't say "provided comfort," you said it sounded like he "comforted" them, which of course just having a Muslim parent would do. But I'm sure that, being a fair-minded person who even called me halfway decent once, you only want to know of any actual action Obama took to help them or encourage them. The answer to that question, the question I'm sure you meant to ask, is "none."

Thomas Sowell: really very good at simply explaining some of the non-intuitive side of economics; not so great at other areas of social politics.

The Reverend Jeremiah Wright brouhaha puzzles me. Several people criticised Senator Obama for his association with a church whose pastor, in the wake of the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks, stated that "America's chickens [pause for dramatic effect] are coming home to roost."

This was about the time that another preacher, named Jerry Falwell, blamed Americans for the 9/11 attacks:

“The abortionists have got to bear some burden for this because God will not be mocked. And when we destroy 40 million little innocent babies, we make God mad. I really believe that the Pagans, and the abortionists, and the feminists, and the gays and the lesbians who are actively trying to make that an alternative lifestyle, the ACLU, People For the American Way, all of them who have tried to secularize America. I point the finger in their face and say, ‘You helped this happen.’”

Before Mr. Falwell indulged in this rhetorical flourish, John McCain had famously labeled him an "agent of intolerance". Six years later (and nearly five years after 9/11/01), Senator McCain gave the commencement address at Falwell's Liberty University.

Who among those who denounced Senator Obama for attending Trinity UCC ever uttered a peep about Senator McCain's embrace of the buffoon Mr. Falwell?

Before Mr. Falwell indulged in this rhetorical flourish, John McCain had famously labeled him an "agent of intolerance"

amazing flip-flopping ability and immunity from guilt-by-chosen-association are the two chief benefits of Maverickhood.

Yes, John, but Falwell merely used mass murder as an excuse to blame the usual suspects, whereas Wright actually made a logical connection that would require us to accept responsibility and change our behavior. Clearly, Wright has to be denounced much more vigorously.

Oh, Kim, I meant to add that you can google Hamas Obama as well as I can. My recollection is that a spokesman said Hamas believed, without explaining why, that Obama would be more reasonable and fair-minded than the current President. He was probably right, in that my left sock is more reasonable and fair-minded than the current President. You wanna call being praised for no particular reason by someone providing him aid and comfort, you go ahead.

Sowell's depiction of an Iranian attack and a 'nuclear war' is also idiotic (surprise!). The chances of Iran launching a direct attack on the United States are, even in the minds of most neoconservatives, vanishingly small. The possibilities normally advanced are that they'd nuke Israel, give nuclear weapons to terrorists, or maybe nuke an American base in the Middle East. This isn't the Soviet nuclear arsenal - they don't even have reliable long-range delivery methods to hit the U.S. (Source)

And there wouldn't be "3 years of losing". True, everyone would really 'lose' in the event of a nuclear war. But with Iran's current number of warheads, they'd hit one or two big American cities and then we'd utterly annihilate their country with a nuclear arsenal that was designed to absorb the entire Russian supply of missiles and then still reduce Russia, a much larger country, to a nuclear wasteland.

We need to disarm Iran if at all possible, because even the semi-realistic possibilities are pretty scary, but what Sowell depicts and implies is simply ridiculous fearmongering.

OK, trilobite, you've caught on that I'm not accusing Obama of directly giving aid and comfort. It's all pretty indirect and subtle, but talking about negotiations without preconditions with the head of the snake is pretty comforting.

Heh, haven't checked this out, but I hear Obama's website quotes him last September as saying he would prosecute those who led us into this war. That's a lot of his fellow Senators, too, I see.
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"ravished our virgins" -- wow.

and that is an excellent question hilzoy -- whose virgins exactly are they

by the way, does anyone know of any code that I could put over phrases like "ravished our virgins" that wouldn't necessarily go to another site, but would simply insert a really scary dramatic sound?

i'm a little bit dumber for having read Grabar's post (and i even stopped halfway in).

Shorter Kim: I have no idea if what I'm saying about Obama is accurate, but don't you think it raises questions about him anyway?

Oh, and hilzoy, I'm sure Sowell would say "all of the above" in answer to your closing questions if he was being honest.

Kim, what does that have to do with Hamas? Obama said he would be willing to meet with "leaders of Iran, Syria, Venezuela, Cuba and North Korea," not Hamas. Hamas and Iran do not get along terribly well.

It's possible that he may have looked generally reasonable, or weak (depending on how you look at it) and that may have cheered Hamas for a little while until his statements about them in particular came out. This is "decades of aid and comfort"?

"There is one big difference between now and the 1930s."

Hey, let's give the man some credit. He's taken his first step into a larger world. If he keeps having insights like this, maybe by 2030 he'll have realized that there are about, oh, thousands of big differences between now and the 1930s.

I have it on good authority that several of our enemies (*cough* Godzilla *cough*) find it a great comfort every time somebody posts a pro-McCain sentiment to a blog.

Not saying it's *treasonous* or anything. Just, you know, it's important to bear in mind that there are evil people (*cough* Zombie Elvis Clones *cough*) out there who work tirelessly to destroy America and who feel a surge of positive affect and renewed hope every time someone posts a pro-McCain comment somewhere.

Ultimately, I think you'd have to be a pretty hard-liner on the Constitution to feel that posting a pro-McCain comment on a blog gives aid and comfort to our enemies (*cough* American Transylvanian Association for Vampire Advocacy *cough*) but I think it's worth thinking carefully about how much guilt you'll bear if you post pro-McCain sentiments somewhere and then the terrorists (*cough* Hummus *cough*) win.

America.

Isn't it worth suppressing contrary opinions for?

This is impressively deranged.

With Iran's current number of nuclear warheads, they could create zero deaths in the US--since they do not have any. OK,
so they get up to some larger number: would they use them all on the US? Anyway, how would they get them here? Not AQ: remember that Iran helped us pursue OBL after 9/11. (Of course, this demands that you know that Sunni != Shia).

This kind of argument usually requires a bad X=Hitler analogy: I'd say that using 1939-1942 to argue for three years of nuclear war with Iran goes to new levels of badness.

Who is Mary Grabar? And what is her relationship to classical Armenian?

have ravished our virgins

Well. As long as they haven't been sapping our precious bodily fluids, we're still good.

Where'd I stash the vodka? Oh. Freezer, natch.

Very, Very Scary

Heh.

Blululululululuh. I am the deadly Mexican staring frog of Southern Sri Lanka! I am very scary. And dangerous.

Wait, if I spent more time volunteering for Obama I'd get to ravish their virgins, whoever they are? No-one told me this was available; I thought the perks were on the order of T-shirts.

There must be a catch, though. Does anyone have any pictures of these virgins? Is it all just ravishing, or are they interesting people with whom to hold a conversation, maybe catch a bite to eat?

And do we have to bind and gag the conservative professors? I mean, if they're into that it's their business, but what if I'm not?

KCinDC: I had the same kind of moment. "Am I thinking too harshly of kim?" But no, kim is putting forth long-since debunked myths and lies and showing the kind of mocking style that reflects a deep buying-in to the movement machine. Someone with more energy and fewer immediate health crises will have to handle the debunking; honest exchange is obviously out, when the talking points get that thick.

"The choice between him and Barack Obama should be a no-brainer."

That much is true.

I have it on good authority that several of our enemies (*cough* Godzilla *cough*)

Which got me to thinking - how flipped-out would their reaction be if Godzilla actually was the threat-du-jour.

Maybe it would be better for mankind to have them focus on Daikaiju instead of other people

OT: Kucinich has been on C-SPAN since 7:30 this evening (DC time), introducing 35 articles of impeachment.

He's up to #24, spying on American citizens without a warrant. So, fans of the rule of law and more than once-every-four-years "accountability moments", get yourself a cold one and settle in.

Or carry on here.

Or both.

Isn't it worth suppressing contrary opinions for?

sounds more like you need a cough suppressant, Jenna.
:->

Jeez, our health care system really has gone to h3ll in a handbasket, when a person in need can't even afford a pack of cough drops.

Every campus that I've ever been on (and it has been quite a few) always has some sort of statue/sculpture/etc. that (legend has it) will come to life, move, or something, when a virgin walks past.

And, strangely enough, it never happens.

I figure it must be that checkbox on the application forms:

VIRGIN? : Y/N

with the Y-answerers being summarily rejected for being either liars or (worse yet) virgins.

That really puts a crimp in the ravishing, let me tell you.

I'm still trying to figure out who the "we" is who have virgins.

From context, they'd be college campuses. Must be a typo.

Nell, I'm all for accountability, but I don't think I'm going to listen to much more of Kucinich (he's been reading EPA letters since I tuned in). He's certainly no Byrd. I hope the early part was less soporific. It would have been better to take a reasonable number of the best articles and leave out the ones that are too easy to portray as political disagreements. But someone doing something is better than no one doing anything.

And I thought (and C-Span's text at the bottom of the screen agrees) that Kucinich's legislation was to impeach Cheney. Has he added Bush now? It sounds like it.

Warren:

Bravo!

After reading Sowell's nonsense, I would really like to give him the benefit of the doubt, but as Hilzoy makes clear he is writing in an unserious way. I don't see why he would do that if he cared whether the United States was subject to another terrorist attack.

Isn't TownHall kind of fish in a barrel, esp. for someone of Hilzoy's brainpower?

Today was spent with two really rich guys and a whole lot of proles. One rich guy was a navy enlisted man before he earned his money in concrete contracting, then some bigger stuff after that. Another got into real estate from some mundane job.

The thing I felt best about though was the proles. They were nothing like what Orwell had described. The locksmith’s assistant was sharp and genuine. The head tow-truck guy would win the Presidency hands down in this race. His wife ran the office and you didn’t mess with her.

American proles are different than Ingsoc proles. Beware.

Sarcasm is never a particularly impressive way of communicating. But when it is as long and heavy-handed as this, and when deployed by one as dull as hilzoy, it really is the pits.

I see it here, a, I see it everywhere; they got snark for lack of anything better.
======================

Tell that to the tow-truck guy kim.

He's sarcastic about the Sacred Groves of Academe, too?
==================================

$120/hr, two hour minimum. $5/mile over ten miles, $35/day/vehicle.

Which means that this prole makes $390 for picking up a car 30 miles away. This action takes maybe two hours and the overhead is four gallons of gas and a truck payment. Add on top of it $35/vehicle/day storage fees and this man in his early thirties is well into the six figures. His phone did not stop ringing.

This prole makes more per trip than an educated person makes in a day. This is difficult thing for an educated person making in the high five figures to witness. I have seen people like that crack. It does not compute in their mindsets. They went to college.

$120/hr, two hour minimum. $5/mile over ten miles, $35/day/vehicle.

Which means that this prole makes $390 for picking up a car 30 miles away. This action takes maybe two hours and the overhead is four gallons of gas and a truck payment plus mortgage ($10?). Add on top of it $35/vehicle/day storage fees and this man in his early thirties is well into the six figures. His phone did not stop ringing.

This prole makes more per trip than an educated person makes in a day. This is difficult thing for an educated person making in the high five figures to witness. I have seen people like that crack. It does not compute in their mindsets. They went to college.

oops.

Why do they always have to ravish our virgins? Why can't they ravish their own damn virgins once in a while. I mean, come on now!

PS: I just received a fascinating note from a born-again "old friend" who's spirit and soul lie buried deep in the heart of Jesusland. I'd been trying to convince him to consider voting for Obama.

This, from an otherwise reasonably intelligent, educated and very powerful local businessman:


"No way Jose!! I believe Obama is the liar of the century and a disciple from the devil. McCain seems to lack intelligence but I would rather have somebody stupid than evil. Your kind words about Obama are wasted on me bro, and you can take that to the bank!!!!!!!!!

Put it this way bro, I despise where he comes from and what he represents. He supports extreme Islamic beliefs in Africa and hangs with false disciples of Christ from the church he now disavows. "Birds of a feather flock together." No use wasting your time telling me how much you love this ever loving ass hole of ass holes!! I would vote for Stoli* before BHO. It is infuriating, to say the least, even to mention his name. He makes me puke!!! Get it yet?? Your Berkley/Stanford roots are glowing in the dark."

*his dog

I replied that I was impressed with his command of the issues and wondered how he found the time for such probing and detailed political analysis and commentary.

As usual, the Blue Team needs to beware of the Crusaders from Jesusland.

Wow, Xanax. It is uncomfortable to be reminded sometimes just how many lies and errors a person can swallow.

Bruce: Knowing how much social, political and economic clout this man wields, I'd settle for "uncomfortable."

To me, this level of lunacy is terrifying. What's more frightening, we're about to find out how prevalent it is.

They were nothing like what Orwell had described.

Do you mean "If there was hope, it must lie in the proles...", or "'The proles are human beings,' he said aloud. '[bourgeois elites] are not human.'

Or do you make the simple and tediously banal observation that the working class in America is not ground down and crushed under the heel of a totalitarian dictatorship?

Oh, wait, you're attacking a straw liberal that's a latte-drinkin', blue-collar-hatin', smug intellectual elitist. Sorry, how could I have missed that? Carry on, carry on.

I kid, actually. That caricature is overbroad, but I've met its like and don't doubt you have as well. But you do the august Mr. Blair injustice by looking solely to his final work to judge his perception of the working class, as noted above. If you want a more sympathetic and meaningful Orwellian take on the working class, I heartily recommend The Road to Wigan Pier. Very readable, and still chock full of merit. But I'll understand if you decline to pollute your mind with such libertarian socialist filth.

(Also, as a semantic quibbling aside, I do find it utterly fascinating that you choose to describe petty bourgeois as, um, well, proles. That word, I do not think it means what you think it means...)

email # 3 from Jesusland: "You may not be aware of Obama's documented support and friendly association with an Islamic extremist politician in Kenya, Raila Odinga, who is supported by the new Soviet leader to undermine democracy in favor of radical Islamic law. Kenya is 10% Muslim but they are on the path of genocide and the horrible torture of Christians, children included, reeking absolute mayhem and terror."

Any of you ObWi geniuses (who are better informed and far better at research than I) know or make anything of this purported Obama/Odinga connection? Is it real and is it as troubling as it may be made to appear? hilzoy... any comments? (the usual googling wasn't particularly helpful).

PS. Must be some pretty smelly mayhem.

"who is supported by the new Soviet leader"

I'm curious where this new Soviet leader resides, and what s/he rules over. Is there also a new Politburo? If so, do they throw a better party than any of the old ones?

This goes out to you, xanax. Some of the usual suspects are onto the insidious threat.

I see the hand of the Sith.

Thanks, Gary! I was so glad to see you were still awake. I'd hoped you'd bail me out. Just forwarded your links to my Kool Aid intoxicated friend. Should be interesting.

Xanax,

I'm not an expert on Kenya: this is taken from Wikipedia and also comments from my aunt, who was a missionary in Kenya for many years, and has just been back on a visit there. (Odinga also has his own website)

Raila Odinga is a Luo (same tribe as Obama's father) and has apparently claimed to be related to Obama. He's an Anglican. My aunt does not have a high opinion of him as a politician or person. But she's very pro-Kikuyu, and the Kikuyu were the main targets of Odinga's supporters after the recent disputed elections.

There is no genocide going on: my aunt's friends in Kenya would not have invited an 80-year old to visit if there was. The church leaders she visited are now trying to get reconciliation and encourage the internally displaced to return to their homes, although this will be difficult. Kenya has big problems of corruption, poverty and tribalism, but militant Islam is not a major factor.

GF: Your Atlas Shrugged link contained this:

"Thus it likely won't shock you to learn that Raila has now made a deal for support from the Soviets' successors as world-champion enemies of the West and democratic freedoms: Moslem fundamentalists."

Perhaps that's what his earlier comment was referring to.

magistra: Thanks for the additional info. Do you, or does anyone, know if Obama actually supported Odinga against Kibaki in the 2007 elections? And is Odinga considered one of the real bad (murderer, wreaker of mayhem, etc) guys? Your Wiki link doesn't suggest that Odinga has been implicated in any untoward violence or the murder of innocents but it's hard to get a solid read on the dude.

"Do you, or does anyone, know if Obama actually supported Odinga against Kibaki in the 2007 elections?"

General sense would suggest that the odds of any sane American politician taking sides in any foreign election that isn't, at the least, completely exploitable in the American press, are extremely low. But since you ask.

Reasonably reliable coverage of Odinga.

May 6th.

There's quite a lot on the Kenyan elections at the BBC website, including a profile of Odinga. (The UK media tend to be quite interested in Kenya generally, as the previous colonial power).

From what I've got from that (and what my aunt's said), semi-organised political violence is fairly common in Kenya (both by the government and opposition parties), mainly because there are a lot of unemployed youths who can be encouraged by one faction to take their frustrations out on someone else. The Kikuyu tend to be the most prosperous (either because they're more enterprising, or they benefited more from patronage, it depends who you speak to) and so are liable to get targeted; they in turn feel the need to protect themselves and so it goes on.

Odinga claims to want to get beyond tribalism, but his critics see him as just desperate for power himself. A report by Human Rights Watch says that his ODM party were actively encouraging ethnic attacks after the disputed election, but there was also nasty violence on the government side. I'm not sure there is a 'good' side to this dispute, just politicians who claim they will change things, but then resort to the same old vicious tactics that have always been used before.* (There were also a lot of hopes about Mwai Kibaki when he came to power, but he hasn't stopped the corruption or transformed Kenya).

*Add parallels from other countries as seems appropriate.

Wow! Three years of nuclear war! I always thought nuclear armageddon would be something of a less than 24 hours business. Let's see, that would be roughly 10 US bombs on Iran per day*. Let's be generous and assume that Iran can produce, if undisturbed, about 1 nuke per quarter and deliver it to the US (per mail, I assume)**. That would be a nice lottery: Guess where the next mullah cracker will land and win a customized lead suit and fallout shelter!
But do not despair! Our beloved right-wing brethren has such strong powers of distortion on the fabric of reality that all those nukes will be deflected right into la-la land, provided the Son of Cain ascends to the throne.


*If the US wants to empty its inventory to make room for new and more modern ones.
**British intelligence has also learned that Iran is breeding mutated http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Simurgh>Simurghs that can deliver WMDs to the US within 45 minutes after hatching.

Gary: First, thanks for your help with the research/links. Second, I asked about Obama's support for or endorsement of Odinga simply out of curiosity as to why he was photographed with him in what looked like a stump speech... Of course, it could have just been Obama saying hello to the folks in Kenya. But, I haven't managed to find a similar picture of BHO with Kibaki so, just thought I'd ask.

Again, you've been helpful & I appreciate it.

ravished our virgins has got to refer to some kind of fiendish olive-oil-napping.

BTW, am I the only one who always thinks that *extra* virgins sounds like something the high priest calls for when the Volcano God is being particularly cranky?

And you should have seen my then 5th-grader's face when her curiousity overcame her and she said, "Mom, I thought I knew what a 'virgin' is, but how can olive oil be one? And how can it be 'extra virgin'?"

Just show her a picture of http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Olive_Oyl>this person and all should be clear.

Doctor Science, now I'm reminded of Joe Versus The Volcano.

@KC: These 35 articles are all for the impeachment of Bush. The C-SPAN chyron changed; alternating with 'Kucinish's resolution to impeach Bush has 35 articles' was one reminding the viewer that he previously introduced a bill to impeach Cheney.

Mileage varies, clearly. I didn't find it a bit dull; supporting each article with citations of specific actions made the whole thing more devastating. (Though I look forward to seeing a list of the short form of just the articles w/o supporting docs, and will link if one becomes available today.)

I hope presiding Rep. Keith Ellison felt the way I did. ;>

Not saying that Kucinich's articles won't find traction, but it's really, really hard to take the guy seriously after his landmark anti-orbital-mind-control legislation.

I wait with bated breath the day a right winger uses a historical analogy that doesn't involve either Nazis or Vietnam.

I will vote for Obama forever if I can get in on the ravishing.

If a conservative professor happens also to be a virgin, does that mean Obama's advance troops must bind and gag them and only then ravish them?

As Popeye said, in the movie, about Olive Oyl: "Sounds like a lubricant!"

I had a conservative professor once who kept a small carafe of extra virgin olive oil and another of sherry vinegar on her desk during student conferences. I was too young and naive to make the connection between that and the fact that she was ravishing as well.

All I know is that I had a mysterious desire to order the chef salad in the dorm cafeteria.

And what is all this about "ensconcing themselves", I ask you?

Are you telling me there is time left over in the day after the binding and the gagging and the ravishing to then engage in whatever self-abuse is involved in "ensconcing' oneself?

My mother advised me once to "find my niche", but she warned me never to "ensconce" myself in my niche. And, never, ever, scratch yourself in public, unless you need a reason to step out of the batter's box on a 2-2 count and consider what the next pitch might be.

By the way, is there anything left for the mop-up troops to do after the advance troops have pretty much had all the fun?

Don't answer that!

Is there carpet bombing somewhere in here?

Don't answer that either.

If all of the advance troops were named Debbie, the movie version could be called "Debbie Ensconces Herself in Denver".

Or, "For Whom The Arugula is Napped"

i'd like to be ensconced in velvet, draped in it.


By the way, is there anything left for the mop-up troops to do after the advance troops have pretty much had all the fun?

I didn't see any mention of raiding the liquor cabinet. I suspect the keys are hidden inside the bust of Edmund Burke. The hollow one, that is. Or at least that is where I would hide them, if I were William F Buckley.

Ravished our virgins??!!??

@Slarti:

To a moonbat like me, taking impeachment "off the table" -- ruling out accountability for crimes against peace, war crimes, crimes against humanity, and serious violations of the U.S. constitution -- is far more cause for scorn than having proposed a loopy piece of legislation.

One of the many poisonous effects of the Democratic leadership edict is that it leaves very few members who are willing to step up to their obligations. The fact that it is Kucinich who does so (supported by Woolsey, DeFazio, and a few others) apparently give people for whom it's convenient to do so license to dismiss the charges.

The fundamental reason the resolution won't get traction because of a craven, anti-democratic decision by the leadership of the Democratic Party. When a Democratic president is in office, the party will have a new reason why the necessary public and official debate on accountability for these crimes has to be stifled -- the urgent business of repairing the damage done by the current ruling clique.

Considering the rate of teen pregnancies in Deep Southern states, it sounds to me like there's no shortage of the ravaging of virgins among archconservatives, as well.

And I love how the Far Right keeps playing up this meme that conservative professors aren't allowed to teach at major institutions. It can't POSSIBLY have anything to do with their intellectual and academic qualifications - or lack thereof. I think it's time they faced the facts: when Francis Fukuyama endorses Barack Obama, there is little one can characterize the Far Right as, beyond "intellectually bankrupt."

I'm giving up commenting again for a while. It looks to me like for the rest of the election season, ObWi will need stronger moderation than it's going to get - at least, I see every reason to judge from experience so far that we will get more and busier trolls. And my energy's just too scarce to fritter away on it.

I'm gonna see how things look to me after this year's anniversary of Dad's death, on the 22nd. In the words of the cliched veteran action hero, I'm getting too old for this. Google knows where to find me.

Good luck with that, Bruce, and hope to see you around again. You'll be missed.

Nombrilisme Vide,
It's true Winston Smith did write those things about the proles, but by the end it's clear that there is no hope in the proles for the larger society of 1984. While they seem to live fuller emotional lives, it's pretty clear that as the party dictum goes "proles and animals are free."

Which isn't to say I disagree with your larger point. I don't know anyone who's college educated who has contempt for "working men." In fact I have a number of friends who hold college degrees who work as house painters, truck drivers, etc. They make excellent livings and keep their own hours. Health insurance can be problematic, but most of them have spouses whose jobs provide health insurance. A friend's pharmacy school classmate drives a UPS truck.

I dunno about you, but my godless liberal school taught me not to use "scantly" as an adjective.

Just sayin'

so-sowell is an idiot. what else is new? i no longer read his column nor bother with his rants, unless someone in a presumably sane forum (such as this one) brings them up. i'm an adherent of the middle eastern adage that he who takes a fool seriously is a bigger one.

Bruce, you're one of the best commenters anywhere. Recharge. My thoughts are with you as you take time to reflect.

I'm hoping that non-electoral posts will not draw quite the same responders. We might have to wait for Eric's return from his own recharging to test that theory.

Gary: First, thanks for your help with the research/links. Second, I asked about Obama's support for or endorsement of Odinga simply out of curiosity as to why he was photographed with him in what looked like a stump speech... Of course, it could have just been Obama saying hello to the folks in Kenya. But, I haven't managed to find a similar picture of BHO with Kibaki so, just thought I'd ask.

Odinga was almost certainly involved in the planning and funding post-election violence. It was too well-organised not to have been planned and paid-for beforehand; the HRW report confirms that members of his party's campaign organisation engaged in systematic hate speech, incitement, and militia organisation before the election (See here). The probability that these things were going on without his knowledge, acquiescence or support is vanishingly small.

In a BBC interview after the violence broke out, he defended - scroll to 18:00 - the burning to death of women and children in a church. Since the formation of the coalition government, Raila has fronted a campaign demanding unconditional amnesty for the perpetrators of the violence.

There's no evidence whatever that Obama is a supporter of Odinga: a document circulated in the Kenyan blogosphere suggesting that Obama contributed money to the Odinga campaign; that document appears to be a crude forgery.

Echoing Nell...

Bruce -- Your comments are among the ones I treasure most.

My own participation here is irregular. I had a honeymoon period after I arrived in January, but eventually had to decide that reading every word of every thread as a replacement for a sudoku addiction was, while an improvement over sudoku, still not a substitute for "a life."

A component of a life, sure, and a wonderful one. But what I eventually realized was that if I couldn't/wouldn't read every word of every thread, my selectivity was better aimed at filtering whose comments I read, rather than which posts I read. I do skip some posts entirely either because I'm not that interested in the topic, or because I don't have time on any given day. But other than that, there are some commenters who (from my point of view) add so little to (or in some cases, detract so much from) the discussion that I skip them entirely if I'm in a hurry, or just skim if I have more leisure (since we're all human beings and both inconsistent and capable of change, I figure that even the commenters I least like will sometimes contribute something worth reading, and sometimes they do).

Your comments contribute mightily to keeping the tone at ObWi thoughtful and collaborative rather than snarky and hostile. When you leave, especially at precisely the time when some particularly unpleasant characters have arrived, the ratio deteriorates alarmingly....

Hope to see you back soon. :)

Bruce: just seconding what everyone else said. Take whatever time you need, but please come back when you feel able.

Bruce,

Add me to the chorus of supportive voices. Take as long as you need to recharge (I can relate to that) but please come back when your time and energy allow.

My own participation here is irregular. I had a honeymoon period after I arrived in January, but eventually had to decide that reading every word of every thread as a replacement for a sudoku addiction was, while an improvement over sudoku, still not a substitute for "a life."

JanieM,

I remember your comments - you have a distinctive "voice" and one that I enjoyed reading - please comment more frequently if you can find the time.

Last OT impeachment-related comment from me on this thread:

The official 35 articles of impeachment in Rep. Kucinich's resolution (pdf), followed by the supporting citations

A text version of the articles only, for the pdf-averse

And I love how the Far Right keeps playing up this meme that conservative professors aren't allowed to teach at major institutions. It can't POSSIBLY have anything to do with their intellectual and academic qualifications - or lack thereof.

Those who make such claims about the lack of conservative professors are obviously TOO FUCKING STUPID to get into an engineering school.

daniel.waweru: Thanks for the additional information. From all I've now read about him, Odinga does not appear to have hands quite as clean as he'd have the world believe. And his perpetual ambition to rise the top of Kenyan politics appears to be almost Nixonian in its obsessiveness. I've learned more about Kenya in the last 24 hours (from Gary & Magistra's links and comments and from your wonderful Kenya Imagine blog) than I ever thought I'd know.

Two concerns remain: If, as you've said, there's "no evidence whatever that Obama is a supporter of Odinga," what was he doing getting his picture taken with Raila on the campaign trail? And, in light of the post-election violence in Kenya, could Obama be tarnished (Swift-Boated?) by his willingness to speak and appear with one who's party is implicated in such drastic violence and whose politics are aligned with and supported by Islamic Fundamentalists?

ThatLeftTurn: Thanks. The feeling is mutual; in fact you and Bruce both stand out for me because of the thoughtful way you address contentious topics without being contentious yourselves.

I'm not going anywhere. To the extent that my not-commenting comes from being too lazy to formulate a clear thought train rather than from lack of time, I'll try to become a (further) reformed character. It's nice to have the encouragement.

xanax,
You're far too kind about KenyaImagine; we do our best.
Now,

Two concerns remain: If, as you've said, there's "no evidence whatever that Obama is a supporter of Odinga," what was he doing getting his picture taken with Raila on the campaign trail? And, in light of the post-election violence in Kenya, could Obama be tarnished (Swift-Boated?) by his willingness to speak and appear with one who's party is implicated in such drastic violence and whose politics are aligned with and supported by Islamic Fundamentalists?

I don't think Obama's being in a photo with Odinga is serious evidence that he supports Raila's party. First, Odinga is the regional leader of the province from which Barack's dad came; it would have been odd of him to visit Nyanza province, which is what it's called, and not pay that kind of courtesy call. Remember too that he visited, and was photographed with, other regional leaders, and various government officials during his visit - no one has claimed that he was supporting them on that basis. Courtesy is not to be mistaken for approval.

In Dreams, Obama is perceptive about the disastrous divisiveness of Kenya's ethnic politics; it would be out of character - and unusually careless - to turn round and take up with an expert practitioner of that brand of nastiness.

I'm not properly familiar with American politics, so I can't speak with any confidence about the possibility of a Swift-Boating along those lines. But an attack of that kind would require some sort of evidence that Obama has supported Odinga. Raila's claims, and the joint photograph, come nowhere near constituting the necessary evidence. Also, while it is true that most Muslims voted for him, it is unlikely that Raila is himself at all sympathetic to radical Islam - he simply spotted a good wedge issue (the treatment of Muslims under the first Kibaki administration) and made the most of it.

daniel: thanks a lot; that's really informative. Stick around. ;)

JanieM: I appreciate your comments too, and send more encouragement your way.

Snarki: you too, but mind the posting rules.

Bruce - just twelfthing or thirteenthing the others. Your comments never fail to get me thinking. Hope to see your here again soon.

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