Sunday, February 27, 2005

Uncle Sam Wants Tu

The simplest thing to do would be to sign up foreigners for the regular U.S. military, but it would also make sense to create a unit whose enlisted ranks would be composed entirely of non-Americans, led by U.S. officers and NCOs.

Call it the Freedom Legion.

Max Boot, we'll call you a goose.

Via Busy, Busy, Busy.

Saddam would be proud

Soldiers sometimes rough despite risk of antagonizing friendly Iraqis

Early in their tour, someone from Charlie Company thought he saw gunshots from a roof while he was manning a defensive position along one of the base walls. The troopers poured heavy weapons fire into the house.

The next morning, soldiers arrived to find several female members of a family dead - and one little girl alive, clinging to her dead mother. Some of the men broke down in tears, the soldiers said.

Via American Samizdat.

Saturday, February 26, 2005

Like to laugh at bigots?

Go here and here where Darp (with balls of f*cking steel) is taking on the neo-racist f*cktards of Aus/NZ.

He seems to be winning.

All altruism, all the time

Ah, yes, it was about WMD (better safe, than sorry!) or freedom (better theocracy than democracy!). Not about securing assets and siphoning resources. Never!

From New Matilda;

Under the new Order, the saving and planting of seeds will be illegal. The market will only offer plant material produced by transactional agribusiness corporations. The US Order introduces a system of private monopoly rights over seeds and will force Iraqi farmers to relay on big US corporations to buy their yearly crop seeds for planting. The term of the monopoly is twenty years for crop varieties and twenty-five for trees and vines. During this time the protected variety becomes the property of the breeder, and nobody can plant or otherwise use this variety without compensating the breeder. The US administration wants to turn Iraq into a testing ground for 'high yield seed varieties' of genetically modified (GM) crops, which will have profound effects worldwide.

The loot is for the winners, they did call 'mission accomplished', after all. I think it is a bit like shotgun rules i.e. first to call scores the best seat. Or something. So more Co-alition troops have died post Bush's declaration than during the 'war'. So what, only numbers. Sh*t, seen any giant statue heads of Bush being dragged about behind Iraqi tanks?


Mission accomplished.

Republicans support gay marriage

Mykeru wants to kill gays (as do ALL non-Bush apologists);

Note that Talon claims that the focus on it's mock news agency has been "malicious", meaning "arising from intense ill will or hatred". Actually, it arose from the fact that Talon was a bunch of lying partisan hacks and, more importantly, they weren't very good at it. Note to right-wing propaganda mills: Not everyone has their ditto head inserted completely up their asses. What's malicious? Pointing out that their "conservative guy" reporter who wrote personal hit pieces padded out with regurgitated wing nut talking points, was himself advertising on the net as a working prostitute? Any sympathy for Guckert on this score has to be mitigated by Guckert's participation in a shit load of sleaze, including the Valerie Plame outing and the trial balloons for the wholly fictitious John Kerry affair story, plus a smattering of self-hating homophobic articles.

Work out what the real issue is you f*cking idiots, it ain't the sexuality. Mykeru will help, click the link and quit your whingeing.

Your 'side' got busted.

Take responsibility, for once.

Kill, kill, kill, kill, kill the poor (x 3)

Being obsessed with death and subsequently slightly interested in health care, I found this para from a Wayne Wood post at Tropp Armadillo, interesting;

She goes on to say that "the length of time you have depends on having access to good treatment." In my father's case the treatment is the best. And very cheap! Because he served in the Navy during WWII he's eligible for the Repat gold card. If an aboriginal living in the NT had the same cardiovascular problems as my father he would have died decades ago, well before the triple bypass.

It also reminded me about the Government proposal to reduce benefits to retired servicemen. Howard tagging future war memorials, in a way (see below).

RSL: School the urban bombers

Shock over Anzac memorial vandalism

"If people are aware of what they stand for I'm sure that they wouldn't have done it," he said.

You just keep on keeping on, little camper.

If you guys quit with the euphemisms, bugles at sunrise and started with a little more detail of what war means, it'd help.

Communicate you silly old buggers.

Tell us about the dessiccated flesh, steaming piles of human organs, shattered bones and mates screaming from pain, shell-shock and the realisation their lives have been changed for the worse.

Tell us before you're all gone, tell us before the jingo-johnnys turn Anzac day and the commemorations at Gallipoli into the Big Day Out.

Trust us

edwardpig commenting on the Pentagon-sponsored television station al-Iraqiya broadcasting propaganda videos;

"An unidentified Iraqi officer introduced the video, saying all insurgent groups in Iraq were covers for Syrian intelligence. He named a number of well-known groups, including one which has killed and beheaded foreigners."

Come again? All insurgents are a cover for Syrian intelligence? Including, for example, Moqtada al-Sadr? I would imagine that this was the point in the broadcast at which all Iraqis stopped listening.

Sh*t, there must be so many spooks running around this part of the world (better than Saddam's time, I'm sure) it'd be like a cross between Mad's Spy vs Spy and an inverted Where's Wally.

Do you suppose cat-burglars have kick-arse security on their own homes? I doubt they hold much trust in others.

Want liberty? Then leave!

Terry O'Gorman's responds, to the Australian Government's opportunistic, knee-jerk proposals after having their collective arses spanked over the Rau f*ck-up;

"There's nothing like having to justify to a court to make people accountable," he said.

Crazy talk!

Googlebomb Fox News (Faux News)

Fox News
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Fox News

Friday, February 25, 2005

Reverse domino effect

Syria to redeploy troops to eastern Lebanon

Mr Mualem said faster troop withdrawals depended on moves to strengthen Lebanese security forces to fill the vacuum.

"Syria sees that speeding up the pace of the withdrawals requires that the Lebanese army and internal security be enabled to fill the gap that might occur in a way that does not infringe on the security of Lebanon and Syria," he said, reading a statement.

Hey George, Tony, John, sound familiar?

Thursday, February 24, 2005

Not just for lunatics

John Holbo of Crooked Timber writes;

(Hey, did you read that nutty stuff over at Powerline today? And every day? Here's my advice. When you find yourself reading something by Hindrocket, some rant about how irrational and traitorous the left is, or the MSM; just sort of pretend you are reading a Spider-Man comic, and Hindrocket is J. Jonah Jameson Free Image Hosting yelling at Betty Brant, or Robbie. Or Peter. About Spider-Man. Because why does he hate on Spidey so? Spidey is so obviously not a menace. He's good. It's too bad we all know who Atrios is now. Otherwise we could imagine: what if Atrios is really, like, Hindrocket's secretary? I realize it is really a quite serious matter than the right-wingers have gone around the bend and apparently aren't coming back. Still, you've got to find a way to read their stuff with a sunny heart.)

Via Mithras (whom I stole the pic of JJ from, too).

Or, we could just bomb them

NEWS: Scott Ritter says US attack on Iran planned for June

On Friday evening in Olympia, former UNSCOM weapons inspector Scott Ritter appeared with journalist Dahr Jamail. -- Ritter made two shocking claims: George W. Bush has "signed off" on plans to bomb Iran in June 2005, and the U.S. manipulated the results of the Jan. 30 elections in Iraq....


Need a better converter

Alternet: The Dragon Chases Oil

In 2004, China's oil consumption increased by 40 percent, to 6.5 million barrels a day. U.S. domestic demand is 20 million barrels a day. U.S. demand is increasing by about 500,000 barrels per day per year. China's is increasing by about 1.5 million barrels per day per year.

World oil production is straining now to satisfy growing world oil consumption. Both the U.S. and China are increasingly dependent on imported oil. Both are aggressively pursuing strategies to maintain their access to oil. To me it looks like China's strategy is more farsighted and coherent. While we've spent $300 billion to invade Iraq, have tried to overthrow the Chavez government in Venezuela, and now threaten Iran, China has quietly entered into long-term contracts with many of these countries. It has invested about $15 billion in foreign oil fields and expects to invest 10 times more over the next decade.

This explains why the U.S. is not interested in anything but democracy in Iraq. If only they could convert the massive amounts of altruism into energy.

Wednesday, February 23, 2005

All options are under the table

From John Quiggin;

There’s no strategy here, just hanging on and hoping things will change for the better. There’s no sign so far that the presence of 150 000 troops has done any good. The insurgency/resistance/terrorists are far more numerous now than they were a year ago. They gain legitimacy when they attack foreign occupiers, and lose it when they attack fellow-Iraqis. I hope that the new Iraqi government, when it emerges, will maintain its campaign commitment (watered down at the last minute) to demand a schedule for withdrawal, but if it doesn’t, Australia and Britain should be pushing the US to set one.

Much talk of the lack of a plan or an exit strategy, Beazley for one, who has not proposed a strategy. Downer reckons Labor's Iraq position is 'muddled and confused', but the marshmallow man himself was asked by the Brits on Jan 29 to send in more troops and said no, apparently.

Either they are lying or, the Australian Government are all over the f*cking place.

Bush called a big favour, no doubt. I see little good in this.

Update: Just now, on Lateline (Aus ABC), Howard actually said, "Seize the day!" in relation to what we can do to stop Iraq 'tipping' into civil war post election. What a dick!

I'd laugh, but....

Via Scoobie.

Gambling man

Asian diversification fears rock markets

"Oil and the dollar are the two big themes," Neil Massa, senior trader at John Hancock Funds, told Reuters. "A weakening dollar is always a concern -- but oil is definitely a bit more of an immediate concern."

Reminded me of this comment by Glen Condell over at WBB's place;

BRIC by BRIC, it’s starting to happen. Russia and China to keep moving to the euro, Japan and China to increase control over US debt, China to keep silently purchasing non-US Western energy suppliers which the US may soon have to rely on, Europe to keep contrasting it’s sensible, measured approach to the future against American panic and self-delusion… they’re ganging up and good on them. When they wrest the direction of the planet from the neocons, where will we be, still clinging onto the hem of a decaying colossus or sitting in the back seat of the new world model, one capable of depositing us into the next century without killing most of us. The time for this decision might seem like it’s a while away but it could be closer than it appears. Apparently there’s been a big flurry of activity recently in the market for helping to retire wealthy Americans overseas… they’re not all wandering around with their eyes closed and their fingers in their lugholes. I wonder how we’d react to an influx of them… if it were up to me it might be snipers. Not only would the rats leaving the sinking ship be significantly responsible for the sinking, but would soon set up shop politically anywhere they ended up perching, with simliar results. Of course great wealth isn’t always behind the perversion of democracy, but it helps.

Is Howard backing the wrong horse?

Tuesday, February 22, 2005

This is not a charade, total concentration

Tim Lambert, defends the Lancet study from another apologist;

"Third, about 37,000 of the deaths the Lancet study uses come from a count by
anti-occupation groups."

No they don’t. This is a complete fabrication.

Saddam would not have counted the dead, accurately. Hypothetically speaking.

Impressed yet?

Australia to send new taskforce to Iraq

Australia will send another 450 troops to Iraq to provide security for Japanese military engineers in the southern province of Al Muthanna.

Not good. I bet Janet is impressed by her little soldier. War is serious.

Monday, February 21, 2005

Another rationale for war

Tony Parkinson is the international editor of The Age. He is a very useful columnist to read from time to time. You hear the straight Bush line without the disbenefit of having to look at the President’s idiot grin while listening.


Yet whenever Parkinson writes about the UN oil-for-food program this fact never seems to get a guernsey. It’s not as if the accusations are just the wild leftist ragings of Pilgers, Fisks and Monbiots. Most of the journalistic hard yakka on the subject has been done by the FT and some of the best reporting on it has been in The Economist.

I need to make a list of the rationale's for war served up post invasion. One of these days...

Sunday, February 20, 2005

Ignore the facts

At Least 55 Dead, Over 100 Wounded In Ashura Bombings

Contrary to what Hilary Clinton said in Baghdad on Saturday, this series of huge explosions does not demonstrate that the guerrilla insurgency has failed or is weakening. Rather, the attacks demonstrate that the guerrilla war is still being waged fiercely.

Hillary would make a great PotUS.

Enemy's enemy

Who benefits from al-Hariri's death?

Al-Hariri had said before his death that he knew there were people working to discredit his Arabist and nationalist points of view.

Regardless of who, like any crime, follow the money. Common sense.

Please listen to my Demo

"I wouldn't answer the marijuana questions," he said, according to the Times. "You know why? Because I don't want some little kid doing what I tried."

Bush is good, man.

Friday, February 18, 2005

Googlebomb: Karl Rove

Karl Rove
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Karl Rove

We Fail: You lose, We win

War Helps Recruit Terrorists, Hill Told

On a day when the top half-dozen U.S. national security and intelligence officials went to Capitol Hill to talk about the continued determination of terrorists to strike the United States, their statements underscored the unintended consequences of the war in Iraq.

Unintended. Wrong. Like the U.S. intervention in Afghanistan, this latest exercise in spending a shit load of taxpayer's money building, using and destroying the war machine (repeat chorus), the outcome these clowns are sooking about was every bit intentional.

Intentional in the fact that they knew exactly what would occur. They're geared for it, certainly won't suffer as a result and in the long term, it will assist in the continuance of the status quo. If you're on top, this outcome is just fine, thank you (It's hard work).

So we can say, "I told you so" to the dumb f*ck apolgist sycophants of the various governments responsible for creating this.. 'situation', as though that will do any good. Uh, they're dumb f*cks, apologists and sycophants. Remember? They won't learn.

But saying it to those who govern, those who rule, will have no effect whatsoever (Gee, we can vote every couple of years for either Evil A or, Evil B. Maybe we can protest and if you're lucky they won't charge you with terrorism. Tops.).

They knew. We knew. Nothing new.

What will be new, is the latest justification and rationale for this war profiteering put forward by our lords. Watch the stooges swallow it, then they'll commence regurgitating.

I'll pre-empt them: you f*ckin' stooges, suck!

Don't bank on reward money

U.S. provide Pakistan with reward money

Tens of thousands of Pakistani troops and 17,000 US forces in Afghanistan have drawn a blank, though officials still presume the al-Qaeda leader is probably hiding in the rugged mountains between the two countries.

I'll be extremely surprised if he turns up in the near future, if ever.

Unless he has received help and medical assistance from his CIA buddies, he is more likely to be 6 feet under, an ex-boogeyman.

The silent victims of divorce

Dowd, thinking of the children;

At last month's press conference, Jeff Gannon asked Mr. Bush how he could work with Democrats "who seem to have divorced themselves from reality." But Bush officials have divorced themselves from reality.

They flipped TV's in the West Wing and Air Force One to Fox News. They paid conservative columnists handsomely to promote administration programs. Federal agencies distributed packaged "news" video releases with faux anchors so local news outlets would run them. As CNN reported, the Pentagon produces Web sites with "news" articles intended to influence opinion abroad and at home, but you have to look hard for the disclaimer: "Sponsored by the U.S. Department of Defense." The agencies spent a whopping $88 million spinning reality in 2004, splurging on P.R. contracts.

Bush is good. Now, where do I send my invoice for services rendered?

Thursday, February 17, 2005

Baboon strategy

There are three bad guys on your block. All of them hate you and would jump at the chance to kill you if they could get away with it. All are deterred by your well-armed and well-armored person, fortress home, and heavily-plated SUV. You fear they might all gang up on you anytime. You figure your best hope is to pick them off individually before that happens. For legal cover, you'll have to provoke one of them into some act to justify taking them out in self-defense.

Go, read, laugh, think of the dead, don't laugh.

Voice of the CIA

Israel Welcomes Pressure on Syria;Campaigns to Stop Russian Missile Deal

Old news, but these guys are CIA. Cool headline, considering.

The proxy files

So, why do you think the U.S. was dragged kicking and screaming into allowing Iraq to hold elections?

Now it emerges that there is a strong movement in southern Iraq for the establishment of autonomous Shi'ite provinces as a precursor to introducing vilayet-e-faqih (rule by the clergy) in the whole country.

A mini-Iran? Delightful.

Asia Times Online has learned that in a highly clandestine operation, the US has procured Pakistan-manufactured weapons, including rifles, rocket-propelled grenade launchers, ammunition, rockets and other light weaponry. Consignments have been loaded in bulk onto US military cargo aircraft at Chaklala airbase in the past few weeks. The aircraft arrived from and departed for Iraq.

The US-armed and supported militias in the south will comprise former members of the Ba'ath Party, which has already split into three factions, only one of which is pro-Saddam Hussein. They would be expected to receive assistance from pro-US interim Prime Minister Iyad Allawi's Iraqi National Accord.

The path is a tad convoluted, but all this fits in with my belief that the U.S. (and friends) are keen to foment Civil War in Iraq. The irony is it is much like Afghanistan in the early 80's. The outcome of that little bit of tomfoolery being a well armed and trained Taliban.

Meanwhile the on-agian, off-again Neo-con man in Iraq, Ahmad Chalabi, is still lurking.

A journalist's complete version, here.

Incompetent or liars. Which is it?


Senator Hill said on Tuesday he stood by departmental advice that no Australians were involved in interrogation.

But former Australian intelligence official Rod Barton says he interrogated Iraqis about weapons of mass destruction (WMD).

Senator Hill pointed to written departmental advice last May which said Australians in the Iraq Survey Group, of which Mr Barton was a member, did not interrogate prisoners.

Backs up this;

Ministers seem to have problems exercising their duties. It doesn’t matter if we’re talking about the case of Cornelia Rau or Rod Barton’s claims about Iraq. They say they weren’t told or didn’t know. They engage in legalistic hair-splitting and public servants take the rap.

That means ministers can’t control their departments, don’t know what is happening and that bureaucracy is out of control.

It suggests that John Howard and his Cabinet can’t run government – even though they’ve had nine years to come to grips with beast.

Plenty of folk out there want to give the Government (and following governments) more power. F*ckin' idiots.

Power: corrupting

"The system was blinking red."

Would George W. Bush have been re-elected president if the public understood how much responsibility his administration bears for allowing the 9/11 attacks to succeed?

The answer is unknowable and, at this date, moot. Yet it was appalling to learn last week that the White House suppressed until after the election a damning report that exposes the administration as woefully incompetent if not criminally negligent. Belatedly declassified excerpts from still-secret sections of the 9/11 Commission report, which focus on the failure of the Federal Aviation Administration to heed multiple warnings that al Qaeda terrorists were planning to hijack planes as suicide weapons, make clear that this tragedy could have been avoided.

What a tangled web these megalomaniacs weave, when they try to hang on to power.

Have gun, will travel

US contractor accused of shooting civilians

"These aren't insurgents that we're brutalising," one of the guards, Bill Craun, a retired US Army Ranger captain, told NBC.

"It was local civilians on their way to work. It's wrong."

No civilians have been killed or harmed, besides, Saddam was worse.

Wednesday, February 16, 2005

White feathers make no sense? Gooood comeback

Fucking coward.

You're the one in favor of the war. Go cover it, go support it, do something other than suggest other people are traitors for not supporting it and other people should fight it. Don't hide behind others. It's about you, not anyone else.

You wanted this war, why don't you have the courage to support it with deeds, not words? You can bring up all the straw men you want, whine all you want, but in the end, you thought conquering Iraq was a grand idea. Now you're being called on it.

Via Scratchings (Harry's blog).

Again, would be more satisfying if it wasn't for the number of dead civilians.

Tuesday, February 15, 2005

Blogs, what are they good for?


This politics by other means takes the form of a scalp-hunt. The game is to find or invent pecadilloes in a member of the opposition, then mobilize everything to grind him or her into dust. Genuinely important issues and ideas are left to languish. The driver here is not maverick journalism, but rabid, vapid political partisanship.

Right now the score is Right, Dan Rather and Eason Jordan; Left, some dude in his skivvies. Trent Lott is doing just fine. My impression is that the Left is playing catch-up, still trying to redeem itself for the rubbishing of Michael Dukakis. I can identify with the need for pay-back. But who knows when it started. The Right is sore about Nixon and Bork. Me, I remember Abe Fortas and Ted Sorenson.

The "self-correcting blogosphere." What rubbish. Blogs are a cesspool of rumor, half-truth, innuendo, and deliberate falsification. All in the name of unearthing unutterable truths. The ones with the biggest pretensions to truth are the biggest liars.


No (perceived) justice, no (perceived) peace

Drawing attention to the atrocity;

OK kids, it's time for our favorite game - "Name That Media Outlet"! Here's today's story. Who wrote it? You make the call!

Yahoo, ride the whirlpool!

Still lying, for what?

The Cadaver on Sky TV news;

Ruddock: But what I can say is that no Australian witnessed torture on the advice given to me and specifically in relation to claims that there was an Australian present, and it was a consular official, at an airport when he was removed from Pakistan. That didn’t happen on the advice I have received. No Australian Foreign Affairs official saw him in Pakistan. There was a card given to another official that was there for other purposes who did have access and that was handed over to Habib. But I mean that is one of the issues of fact which clearly is at issue.

F*ck off, Ruddock.

The ducking and weaving has nothing to do with national security and everything to do with avoiding and mitigating damage, politically.

Megolamaniacs. Good for nothing and nobody but themselves.

Monday, February 14, 2005

Sneakin' in at the movies

After I saw Be Cool, I snuck into see Hitch. It's a light romantic comedy and I give it seven out of ten stars. Had I paid to get in, I would have felt that I had gotten my money's worth.

Scoobie Davis makin' sense.

Iraq election a success (if you enjoy a Neo-con failure)

Juan Cole, states the obvious;

One of the Neoconservatives' goals had been the installation of a pro-Israel government in Baghdad. But at Supreme Council for Islamic Revolution rallies and Friday prayers services, crowds have been known to chant "Death to Israel!"

You gotta laugh. Until you think of all the dead 'innocents'.

Demagogues a dozen

Kurt Nimmo has the last word on Ward Churchill;

I have now reached the point where any of my minor disagreements with Ward Churchill are wholly insignificant. I don’t care about his “pedigree” (as he sarcastically termed it in his speech last Tuesday), or if he rubbed elbows with the Weather Underground, or visited Moammar in Libya, or was possibly a bit sloppy with his references and citations. For me, the only thing that matters is that he continues to tell the truth about the United States government: it has killed millions of people, violated numerous international laws, and as a citizen of this country—regardless of what Mike Weiner or Joe Scarborough say about treason and sedition—it is my right and duty to point this out.

Alright, so maybe not the last.

Cheap labour conservatives

Costello to punters: get fat on pork pies

Mr Costello gave a press conference on the day of the release of the Statement on Monetary Policy that was packed with misleading propositions. One of them was that, to ensure we kept inflation and, hence, interest rates down, we needed a lot more industrial relations reform to minimise excessive wage growth.

That's a non sequitur. It's conflating a short-term macro-economic problem with a medium-term micro-economic reform.

Gittins also shafts the idea that only workers involved with efficiency gains can rightfuly claim a wage increase.

Sunday, February 13, 2005

Chavez, Chavez, Chavez.....

Chavez: US is a terrorist state

"They keep on bombing cities, killing children, they have become a terrorist state," he said.

Ah, what would he know?

Economic sooks

Labor to introduce Kyoto bill

In London several hundred protesters marched, demanding that Australia and the United States sign up to the Kyoto protocol to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

Australia and the US have rejected the agreement on the grounds it would damage their economies.

Awww, their poor widdle economies may suffer. What a crocker Barry. As if business (and the economy as a whole) can't adjust to ANY change. Business is quite dynamic, it could (and would) cope. F*ckin' sooks.

Can't wait to see how the media treat Labor over this move.

Our choice of PM

Habib, confesses under duress. How could he resist the cash?

"No. Australian he was watching me when I been beaten."

During the particular episode of abuse, Mr Habib said 15 men stripped him, inserted something into his anus, put him in a nappy and tied him up.

This is what John Howard's time as PM will be remembered for.

Freedom, you like that? Huh? Yeah, I know you like it.

Media whores

Mykeru serves up a nice post on Guckert;

They have a deal with power. It's quid pro quo: The Bush administration puts a total tool like Michael Powell in charge of the FCC to dismantle the old rules against media consolidation that reek of socialism, or worse, civic responsibility because they put the public welfare above the corporate bottom line and, in return, the media licks Bush administration ass until their neocon sphincters positively gleam. And any loose cannon that isn't going with the program gets kicked right off the gravy train. Not as if any of them are not going to go with the program. What the radical right wants is the same thing the media owners want. They go to the same parties and tee off together. And the people who work for them just want to get invited to eat the crumbs they leave behind.

Which is why no one should be surprised by the pathetic saga of Bush administration media payola which has most recently manifested itself in the exposure of "Jeff Gannon", a member of the White House Press Corps as a transparent shill and the organization he worked for, Talon News, as a cardboard front that couldn't hide the sour milk stench of Goopers lurking behind it.

I got your money.

Rule enforcers

Referees' cruel sex ritual - find a fat woman

The most crucial difference was that one referee felt so uncomfortable about what the woman was asked to do last Sunday that he asked the NSW Rugby League Referees Association to act. "It was pretty degrading what the woman was made to do," a referee said.

I think this says a lot about the types of characters attracted to this sort of job. Some weird arsed power issues coupled with feelings of inadequacy (well, they're not good enough to actually play the game). F*ckin' losers. Is this 'psycho-babble'?

Also, I'm not too keen on the fact that the media feel they have to highlight the 'criteria'. Serves little purpose, other than to disparage the voluptuous amongst us.

Saturday, February 12, 2005

Man of interest

The SMH on Mamdouh Habib;

Regardless of whether Mr Habib met Mr Adams or asked the ASIO officer to return him to Australia, the events raise new questions about what role Australia had in his transfer to Egypt.

When they refer to 'transfer', they are talking about abduction, likely so the U.S. could have him tortured by proxy. This way, it is even more legal.

They told him he would be raped by trained dogs if he did not confess to being a member of al-Qaeda and was, among other abuses, placed in a chamber filled with water and forced to stand on his toes for hours to avoid drowning.

They also allegedly used electric shocks to extract confessions, which Mr Habib made but later retracted.

Be sure to watch Sixty Minutes for more details similar to this. Sure to entertain our beautiful minds. Turn 'em ugly.

Update: Lynne Stewart, argues that the end justifies the means; But she also testified that she believed violence was sometimes necessary to achieve justice: "To rid ourselves of the entrenched, voracious type of capitalism that is in this country that perpetuates sexism and racism, I don't think that can come nonviolently."

Draw a line

The article is a few days old, obviously this is no insta-blog, it is still worth a read. Andrew Kenny suggests labels are for fools (the political kind, though it is also true for clothing).

Some owl – from The Economist, I think – wrote: "The Right believes in economic freedom; the Left in personal freedom." Very well, a key economic freedom is free movement of labour and a key personal freedom is the right to own a firearm. So, does a right-wing Englishman believe people from Africa should have unlimited right to enter Britain looking for work, and does a left-wing Englishman believe all Britons should have the right to carry revolvers?

Found the story Via.

Friday, February 11, 2005

Surveillance state

"We are past the point where people sought out information that would make the state objectively a better place. Reform liberalism is dead. Data is gathered in order to further a warped, crackpot version of market rule. The pet rocks and cabbage patch gold rush theory of governance produces politicians who are good at winning elections and maintaining the appearance of legitimacy."

Oh, man. This sort of stuff makes my head want to pop. Alls I can say is, glad I didn't fill in my Census form correctly. Or, do I mean to say, truthfully?

From Scratchings.

Born to be an adulterer

Tim Dunlop writes;

"What a disgusting institution the Royal Family is."

For so many reasons. Starting with the idea of a person being born to rule. Hereditary succession. The foot in the door for fools, evil and the painfully average. Considering the size of most folks egos and the level of cognitive dissonance many of these same folk suffer, imagine what happens to the mind of the person told from day one: "you, are born to Rule."

Around the traps, Charles is referred to as a quaint eccentric. The f*ck? He's a complete oddball with no connection to normal society. Never has, never will (thank f*ck!). Imagine if Charles was in charge? Apart from some decent environmental policy, we'd all be in deep sh*t.

Not to mention the papers would be full of Royal bedroom shenanigans and Royal political shenanigans. Absolutely no hope for us news junkies (well, maybe Al-Jazeera).

C'mon Republicans, hop to it!

Thursday, February 10, 2005

Glazing insurance

North Korea admits it has nuclear weapons

Now, this changes everything. Actually, no it doesn't, seeing as this nuclear arsenal was and is no more secret than Israel's.

Here's a perfect example of why Iran would love to sort out an operational nuke;

But he (Bolton) said Washington has not imposed a deadline for Pyongyang to return to the table. "There is no deadline here," he said. "To be productive, you have to have talks and that's why we are waiting."

Fair enough, the statement was made prior to North Korea's admission, but the sabre isn't quite being rattled.

PS: Iran treads a fine line. What other choice do they have?

Not just a reward

Gun strategist and spinner, Karl Rove, subject of a doco titled, “Bush’s Brain”, has scored a neat little job;

Rove, who was Bush's top political strategist during his 2000 and 2004 presidential campaigns, will become a deputy White House chief of staff.
In that role, he will be in charge of coordinating policy between the White House Domestic Policy Council, National Economic Council, National Security Council and Homeland Security Council.

Now, why do you think a man of Rove’s skills (he sold the idea of Bush being a bold leader and a compassionate conservative) would be given a role involving the NSC and Homeland Security? Surely not to serve a political agenda.

The Earth is still flat

From AlterNet, Greetings From the New Flat Earth;

The nominees for this dubious honor are mega-popular author Michael Crichton, mega-loud radio personality Rush Limbaugh, and mega-persistent scientist Dr. S. Fred Singer. Crichton's new novel, State of Fear, poses the idea that global warming is not as dangerous as the media makes it out to be, and goes so far as to blame environmental activists for whipping up a "state of fear"; Rush Limbaugh has long espoused his belief that global warming is a left-wing hoax; and atmospheric physicist Fred Singer has been trying to debunk warnings about global warming almost since they began in the late 1970s.

You can vote over at The Flat Earth Award website. Go ahead, its not as though voting could affect economic growth.

Wednesday, February 09, 2005

Juan Cole buries Jonah Goldberg

Pundits jump up to get beat-down, broken down to their very last compound

"Goldberg also makes an elementary error in arguing that the fact that people in Iran are disillusioned with Khatami now, in 2005, has any bearing on their attitudes in 1997 when they first elected him. As a historian, Jonah, let me explain to you about this mistake. It is called "anachronism." It occurs when people argue that present conditions explain past ones. It doesn't work that way. Mostly because time's arrow goes forward, not backwards. I should explain that one too. It is called "the second law of thermodynamics." Apparently this law does not exist in Punditland, where the grand pooh-bahs are all permitted 3 anachronisms before breakfast."

Damn. Goldberg will be needing Viagra, assuming he ever gets another chance. After this, his confidence will be absolutely shot.

Popeye, slave to the chronic, y'all

Real world getting you down? Yes. Via comics, engage in some fantasy and get high on analogy;

Whether Popeye 's many pot references are intentional or not, some see amazing depths and layers of meaning within the Popeye saga. An author and online artist named Michaelm provides the following analysis:

"Popeye characterizes the natural cycle going back through the ages to the ancient mariners ... books, [B]ibles, logs, maps, pennants, sails, ropes, paints, varnishes, lamp oil and sealants were all derived from hemp. Bluto represents the greedy toxic corporations, dependent industries and landowners.

"Both characters try to swoon the premier oil source, Olive Oyl. Bluto begins to understand Popeye is too competitive so he decides to eliminate him. He chains Popeye down, captures Olive Oyl, and approaches the point of rape. But in the end Popeye manages to suck the 'spinach' through his pipe, grows strong with hemp, breaks free and defeats the evil corporations, saving her from industrial pollution and oppression.

"Relieved and happy, she gives herself back to the natural cycle, then Popeye smiles, winks and toots his pipe."

Well, Bluto is Bush/U.S., Olive Oyle is Iraq/World's Oil Reserve, simple enough. But, who the hell is Popeye and where the f*ck is he?

Tuesday, February 08, 2005

The bastard debate

Why re-hash the abortion debate? Perhaps as a fodder for a distraction to this: The Mad Monk's aborted promise.

Federal Health Minister Tony Abbott has defended a decision to downgrade an election promise to cut drug prices, saying it would not torpedo anticipated savings.

Via, Harry, with this comment over at Troppo Armadillo.

To fix fault: Switch, off. Switch, on.

Cars are beginning to act like PC's;

Owners across the country and around the globe have posted anguished cries to Internet forums about electronic gremlins that stop windows from rolling all the way up, that unexpectedly dim the interior lights, that drain batteries or that make engines sputter. While most automakers have had problems, quality rankings for some - particularly technology-intensive German luxury brands renowned for engineering - have plunged.

"It's these transient things that tend to drive people nuts," Mr. Mills said.

As long as they don't start acting like Yul Brynner's character in Westworld.

Tim Dunlop is back on line and fired up

In response to the warmongers sooking about a supposed lack of enthusiasm regarding the recent (and still unresolved) Iraq election from some quarters;

"What a record: at every step along the way when you have had to choose either between solidarity with the Iraqi people, dedication to the basic premises of democratic government, support for the rule of law or siding with the Bush administration come what may, you have assumed the role of partisan apologist on every count."

Freedom fries, yum! Gobble 'em down, then puke 'em up.

Update: All is freedom.

Monday, February 07, 2005

Howard's bluff

The current Australian Government is demonstrably the most mendacious, spiteful, authoritarian and opportunistic, ever. Even the apologists can not dispute this. As an argument, likely they will say the GWOT has required such acts from this Government and various others. Its a tough job, hard job. Yet, nice work, if you can get it.

Look at this from Howard on Mamdouh Habib;

"The reason that he has not been charged, as yet, under Australian law is that some of the offences, or the activities rather that he's alleged to have undertaken, were not criminal at the time they were undertaken, although similar activities are now crimes under Australian law," he said.

Similar. Are NOW crimes. Whatever, you little puke, or unflushable turd as someone once described him (Flush, damn you!).

So.. they didn't think of Habib's supposed crime in their last bout of fear-driven law-making: Embarrassing the f*ck out of the Australian Government and their other illegal-invasion starting buddies.

I wouldn't be surprised if they use their 'scot-free' story as further reason for tougher laws.

Can't wait.

Sunday, February 06, 2005

Look at moieeee


"We are rapidly becoming devoid of creative thinking and have become mundanely comfortable in selling our souls on a daily basis to anybody who will pay us enough", claims Stretton to anyone still awake at paragraph three.

Of course, when Stretton says "we" he means "us", which is everybody except him and the sort of people who read Webdiary for its incisive analysis.

I have no idea what the f*ck the fuss is all about (I've never read Kingston, Webdiary or Stretton), but this freak has a passport pic at the top of its' blog.

I'm at a loss. Maybe the truth hurts, ay? F*ckin' sell-outs.

Friday, February 04, 2005

Who's your invisible cloud buddy?

The Religion that Encourages Sucking Blood from an Infant's Mutilated Penis

"New York City health officials are investigating whether a baby boy died after contracting herpes from the... "

Religions, WTF?

The frail Julia Gillard

Spike reports Julia Gillard's opener in a talk at the Committee for Economic Development of Australia

"Thank you for the opportunity to be with you today. I'm aware that CEDA was really hoping to secure Nigella Lawson to speak today on how to be a domestic goddess, and other topics deemed appropriate for women. I trust I don't prove to be a too unsatisfactory replacement and I apologise up front for intending to discuss Australia's future rather than dispensing recipes.

"Unfortunately, I know more about public policy than I do about cookery, but I do appreciate that, in the eyes of some, this is a clear character defect that needs remedying."


Weasel Words, on line

The book is great and the Weasel Words website is, too.

'Another spokesman for the Department, Mr Andrew Gavin, did confirm that a "removal operation" had taken place on 13 December last year ... and was able to clarify that a removal operation is different from a deportation, which is what happens when Australia deports criminals, but refused to discuss any particulars or the details of the operation. ' An Australian Department of Immigration description of what Sonia Chirgwin saw on a Thai International Flight

Have a look, if you’ve been responsible for generating this sort of stuff, you’ll cringe with embarrassment. If you’ve suffered by having to wade through this sort of crap, like most of us at some stage, this site may benefit you in the knowledge that you are not alone. Help is near.

They redefine freedom

Shiites move to block Allawi.

Dr Shahristani said: "The fact that the Minister of Defence, on the day there were four suicide bombings in the capital, spends all his day at the airport trying to take a few hundred million dollars in cash out of the country before the elections doesn't speak very well for the government's performance."

Here we go, the U.S.'s puppet, accurately labelled, Saddam-lite, is not too popular in Iraq and could be bumped. This result of the election is why the Bush Government opposed and then delayed the election. It does not suit them and defeats their real purpose of invading Iraq.

Freedom? Get f*cked you gullible stooges, unless of course you are referring to the U.S.'s ability to freely do whatever they want. Install leader of choice, extract resource of choice, bomb target of choice.

Thursday, February 03, 2005

The bad JC

That crazy Juan Cole is up to no good, again!

The Bombing

I don't always agree with Dahr Jamail, an independent journalist in Iraq. I don't think the US used chemical weapons at Fallujah, and I don't think people were coerced to vote via their food ration cards. But Dahr's report on the US bombing campaign on civilian neighborhoods in Iraqi cities, which the US media completely ignore, is compelling and very much worth reading. Especially since the mainstream media in the US seems to me to be unable to cover more than one Iraq story at once, or to evince more than one mood at once. So when the Abu Ghraib torture scandal broke last spring, or when the thousandth US soldier was killed, we got the gloomy Bad Iraq. This week we get the successful-elections Good Iraq. But for people in Ramadi, the bombs keep falling no matter what the spin is on Iraq in New York and Washington that week.

The tomdispatch link at the start of the paragraph is worth a look, contains a heap of links to articles detailing the reality of the current situation in Iraq and likely future i.e. more bombs dropped from U.S. planes.

Bush's State of the Union address

I won't let terrorists wait us out: Bush

Bush’s latest SotU is chock full of the usual lies, democracy this, terrorism that, bla-blah, blah..

This one is a good one;

He said Washington was working with Britain, France and Germany to convince Tehran to give up its nuclear programs, and added: "To the Iranian people, I say tonight: As you stand for your own liberty, America stands with you."

A nice little team assembled? I don’t think so. The U.S. is on its’ own in threatening Iran with military attacks and invasion, diplomacy not being in this administration’s play book.

I wonder why Israel wasn’t cited as a fellow traveller with the U.S?

Update: from Maru;

The bSOTU transcript.
Word count:
Weapons of mass destruction = 0
Osama bin Laden = 0
Free = 6
Democracy = 8
Terrorists = 11
Freedom = 21

I wonder why Bush mentioned freedom so often?

Nazi propaganda

"The image you see here might lead you to believe that the child in the picture has been made "glad" and secure thanks to the U.S. troop presence in Iraq. As "El Gringo" discovered, however, Lindy Eddy doctored the photograph. The original photo, taken by a journalist, depicted a young girl who had just received bullet wounds during a firefight in which her mother was killed and her father was wounded. Eddy doctored the photo by erasing the little girl's own face (which carries the listless expression you would expect from an injured child) and replacing it with someone else's face to make her look positively radiant and adoring."

A perfect analogy for the Bush Government's telling of the Iraq 'success story'.

Plenty of war supporters out there believe this stuff, or at least say they do. The reason for which I can only imagine is a desire to be on the side of 'good'. Or maybe they're just plain ol' f*cked in the head i.e. cognitive dissonance.

Wednesday, February 02, 2005

Tim Blair, sycophant, fool, d*ckhead

As Ken Parish points out in a Troppo Armadillo post, sycophants to power such as that giant-brained Tim Blair are so keen to call the recent (recent... ) Iraqi elections a success, they call it before anybody could possibly know.

Insurgency? Gone! Iraq held an election don't ya know?

U.S. Bombing raids? Gone! Election!

Lack of water/food/medicine? Gone! Why? Election, of course.

It will be up to those who care enough to actually consider reality, to bring the average punter back from the perception as described by the sycophants.

Yeah, thanks Blair, you f*ckin' idiot.

Pepe Escobar writes nothing new, we've all read this sort of stuff in the past couple of years, its worth another read now, post election;

If the Sunni resistance is really 200,000-strong, as Iraq's chief spook has announced, it is the resistance that will have the last word. In a perverse twist of "reaping what you sow", American abuses in Iraq have reaped so such anger that nobody wants them to leave - even moderate Sunnis, because everyone fears total chaos. The Americans created the conditions for the emergence of a hardcore resistance. They created the conditions for the emergence of suicide bombers. And they created the conditions for staying: after all, now they need to engage in counterinsurgency. As the Iraqi Islamic Party, the biggest Sunni party puts it, even the resistance does not want the Americans to leave. What moderate Sunnis want to see is a detailed plan on the table, with fixed dates.

Don't read it, you don't want to know.

Oh yeah, 'the left' are to blame for any failures in Iraq from this point.

Madmen at the wheel

Errrt.. Put the brakes on!

"It's basically updating the books so the information on the shelf is the most current," said the official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity.

I guess this explains why the CIA was not 100% behind Bush's illegal invasion (and after being shafted during '03-'04, are now being sidestepped by Rummy's Pentagon).

Meanwhile, the MSM are quite helpful in revising our recent past.

ps: how do you drive a bookshelf?