Our Brilliant, Libertarian Strategy

This post is going to be political.  If you don’t like that, come back tomorrow, and check MGC in about an hour.  There will be a new post and it will be about writing.

You see, I just realized the utter brilliance of our strategy on Syria.  No?  Guys, it’s the Nuke The Moon Strategy.

For years on the right, we’ve admired Frank J. Flemming’s strategy first proposed in IMAO years ago, that we should just nuke the moon, so the rest of the world will go “Whoa.  Those Americans are nuts. They just nuked the moon for NO REASON AT ALL.  We should never mess with them” and leave us alone.  Prominent righties and – particularly – libertarians have been seen sporting a Nuke the Moon T-shirt.  (Okay, so I need to buy one.  I want to get one for Toni Weisskopf too.)

Now we’ve been watching the run-up to war in Syria, utterly bewildered.  Wait, what?  We’re going in because a dictator killed his own people?  Uh.  So, when do we go in to Russia and China?  Are they already on the slate?  If we go in everytime a regime acts badly to its own people, we’re going to need a bigger army.

In fact, some of us libertarians, wary of this administration’s view on things, have wondered if it meant that Obama realized socialism/communism are direct descendants of things like the Roman Empire, and that the only way such empires can survive is through plunder an rapine.  (the flip side of Russia’s stories about liberating other countries, is that they plundered other countries, particularly in Africa, to keep their miserable regime going at home.  Otherwise they would not have last 70 years.)  So we looked at this warily, wondering if we were about to actually start that thing that the progressives have been seeing everywhere, an American Empire.

It is of course the crux of the libertarian dilemma.  We do believe in liberty for all and that all humans crave liberty.  But we do not wish to engage in war to bring about an universal revolution.  We tend to think that people will come to liberty in their own time.  In fact, some of us don’t believe in even defensive wars, which is why the saner ones of us have a small l in libertarian.

So, though I believe indeed that Assad is a very bad man (Michael Totten says so, and I trust him.  Also, you don’t argue with a man who’s been where he’s been) and needs taking out, I also know the world – and particularly the Middle East – is full of very bad men.  If we start taking them out one by one, there won’t be a functional difference from empire, unless we go in, take them out and then come home, which leaves the country in the state of the man who had demons cast out: much worse things will move in.  And then it will all be to do again, unless, of course, your idea is to get the US surrounded by enemies.

Considering this president’s background, this has occurred to some of us, too.

But then we watched the lead up to the war and it looked like anything but the beginning of a new empire, or even the beginning of an evil plan.

To begin with, what kind of empire or evil plan starts by sending John-the-French* and his enormous chin abroad?  Who could possibly take him seriously? The English were laughing so hard that they actually voted NOT to bleed and die with us, as they’ve been doing over the last ten years.

And then there’s the “We’re going to bomb on Saturday” and then “no, we’re not, we’re going golfing.” There followed the bewildering “We’re going to bomb but not hurt anyone, or perhaps even infrastructure, and we’ll only use drones.”  And before that, who can forget the famous “We’re going to bomb just enough not to be laughed at?” Oh, and the “We’re not going to have boots on the ground, unless our strategy fails, and then we’ll send our men in to die for—What?  We need an objective?  Well, no we don’t, we have drawers on our heads, so there.”

As we watched this unroll in horror, one of my friends sent me the following as his guess as to Obama’s motives:

 Let me be perfectly clear… I am not attacking Syria because I have something to prove. It’s just extremely vital to our national security interests that we intervene in this situation that everyone with a measurable IQ is advising against intervening in. I think it’s imperative that we attack Syria becase that will mean you should love me now, right? I’m Daddy’s big brave soldier now, right! DAMN IT, DAD, ANSWER ME!!! WHY DID YOU LEAVE?

This is what is known as a low blow, but I don’t feel qualified to say it is not true, either.

And after all the speculation on Bush’s motives for war, after we were ATTACKED, for a full eight years, I don’t feel particularly charitable either.  And my friend Bill Reader, might very well be right.

Another friend – one of you, whom I’ll credit if he wishes, sent me slogans for the new war:

Obama Bluffed, Hillary Sloughed, Syrians Get Stuffed

No Blood For Ego

Wage War, Not Dithering

No War On Middle East Reformers

Obama’s Syrian Plan:  If it were done when ’tis done, then ’twere well it were done leisurely

NObama War

Obama Dithered, Rebellions Withered

Obama’s Chickens, Coming Home To Roost

The Obama Doctrine: Speak Loudly, But Don’t Carry A Stick, Big Or Otherwise

The Democrat Party: Emboldening America’s Enemies For 100 Years

When the going gets tough, Obama gets flustered

Drift is not a strategy

Submission Accomplished

To which I confess I added: Is this a Syria I see before my hand?  Its Assad pointed towards me?  Oh, never mind, I’ll go kill America’s checks and balances, instead.

So… as you can tell we were somewhat confused.  But our brilliant (in the sense that light reflects off them because they’re so greasy) representatives seem determined to give the President his war.

And they can’t all be mentally retarded or daddy issues cases.**

So why would “sane” people want us to engage in a war against people who did NOT directly attack us, for nebulous reasons, with no victory conditions, on the side of an organization that DID attack us a dozen years ago, and apparently having promised to do nothing more than bomb some sand? (Which could get us told to go pound sand.)

I mean, I looked and looked and could make no sense of it.  It was like a French Absurdist Play.***

And then it hit me.  It was nuke the moon.

We’re going in to bomb a random country for killing its own people perhaps with weapons of mass destruction, which might have been deployed by the government OR the rebels we’re going to help.

We’re going to rain sheer terror on a country out of the blue because our president is bored with golf.

Friends, it’s brilliant.  It’s nuke the moon.  From now on any country out there knows that at any minute it could find itself on the painful end of the greatest military the world has ever seen.

It’s the perfect prelude to a libertarian regime, which isolates itself from the world.  FIRST you must scare the crap out of the world.

I can tell you from experience the scariest people to meet around a street corner are not the strong, evil-looking men.  They’re the coke-stringy people, with the wild eyes, muttering to themselves.  At any minute, they might come at you.  You can’t predict what they’ll do.  The only thing you can do is leave them alone.

Metaphorically speaking, this administration has set out to make the US the drug addicted drifter mumbling about space aliens and waving a knife around with no purpose.

It’s either absolutely, staggeringly brilliant…

Or we’re the meth head in the corner on our way to death by cop.

But I’m hoping for the first.  Well done, presidential advisers.  Let’s nuke the moon Syria.

*No real French people are harmed by this comparison, since Kerry resembles only a caricature Frenchman, drawn by Francophobes.  I heard rumors he doesn’t even speak French.  (Yes, he says he does.  But he also claims to be a war hero.)

**Okay, so they can, but I like to sleep at night.

*** I will note that the French are with us on this war, and they know from Absurdist Plays.  (I’ll also recycle a low blow from 2002 and point out that taking the French to war as our allies is as indispensable as taking an accordion on a deer hunt.)

UPDATE: Completely unrelated post at Mad Genius Club.

280 responses to “Our Brilliant, Libertarian Strategy

  1. Christopher M. Chupik

    Shorter Obama: “Red line! They crossed the Red Line, now we must bomb! Well, just enough not to get mocked. We’ll have an international coalition. Well, we have the French. Maybe I should ask Congress first. The world set the Red Line first!”

    • “Uh, credibility? its not my credibility on the line, I didn’t set a “red line” … its your credibility that’s the ticket” – Obama

      • Yes, it would be racist. Yes, they did it to Condoleeza Rice but that doesn’t make it right. No, nobody should even consider photoshopping a picture of Obama as Butterfly McQueen’s best known role, Prissy, saying “I knows everything about drawing red lines.”

    • Even Shorter Obama from today: “I did not have red line relations with that country, Miss Syria…”

  2. Brilliant. But maybe nuking the moon isn’t good enough. We need to do in some whales, too, while we’re at it. (“nuke a gay baby whale for Jesus”)

  3. Liberals: fascists whose favorite color is red. Apropos of nearly nothing at all.

    Leftists like to make fun of RKBA advocates that guns are … um… enhancement. One might reach a parallel conclusion anent leftist politicians and war. Chest-thumping, saber-rattling, and machismo. How’s that smart diplomacy workin’ out fer ya now, Mr Cowboy?

    M

    • Obama’s diplomacy (sure, insult the Brits and suck up to the Russkies — what problems could that cause?) is making the US smart, alright. Apparently hitting the nation on the nose with a rolled up economic paper in his first term didn’t make us smart sufficiently, and we’ve (largely) left that Benghazi wake-up call unanswered; I quail at the consideration of what it will take to make us smart enough to return to (non-Orwellian) Liberty as a value.

      • I lack time this afternoon to do more than the basic substitution, but O find myself humming the Wayne Newton classic “Danke Schoen” with new lyric: Schadenfreude, Obama, Schadenfreude ..,

  4. Except the advantage to nuking the moon is that it doesn’t give the Martians a leg up in taking over part of the solar system. Bombing Assad gives al’Qaeda and the Muslim Brotherhood a leg up in taking over Syria.

    Which, really, is trading one set of nutjobs for another there, but since there’s no net gain, why even spend the lives, credibility, and treasure?

    • Christopher M. Chupik

      In four years, the US has gone from fighting al-Qaeda to actively assisting them. Change!

    • The most sane option I’ve heard is to basically hang out in the area and any time we figure out that someone almost definitely did a warcrime, hurt them.

      And if someone tries to frame the other side for it, hit them harder.

      I think of it as the “guy standing in the corner in a bar fight” theory…..

      • So, basically, kill people for no real accomplishment.

        No thanks.

        • Actually, no, nothing of the sort.

          Blow the shit out of flight lines now, and if specific spots gas folks again, then kill people.

          Accomplishment: they won’t be gassing women and kids again.

          Shockingly, just because someone disagrees doesn’t mean they’re a moron.

          • “Accomplishment: they won’t be gassing women and kids again.”

            They’ll just gun them down. Or run over them. Or use knives.

            What’s the gain?

            Not saying you’re a moron, I’m saying that trying to police a series of atrocities because sometimes the atrocities are carried out in a way we find particularly horrible is a bad idea. We won’t be stopping atrocities, and in the end we’ll be blamed for the ones that happen, because we were there and did nothing.

            Plus, we’ll be spending OUR resources, OUR lives, tying up OUR military, for something that, in the end, only benefits people who would slit our throats and then go out for ice cream.

            • I think you aren’t considering exactly how nasty chemical warfare is, and that you are being short-sighted about “benefits.” That said, I don’t expect to change your mind on either count.

              • I fear chemical weapons like I fear rabies. But who popped off the chem? And if we punish Assad and it turns out later that the rebels popped it off, do we punish them as well? And where did the gas come from, if Assad made it and the rebels got it, do we pushish Assad again? What if it came from IG Farben who sold it to Assad, do we launch cruise missiles at Berlin to punish them also? And if instead it was part of the shipment that came over the border from Iraq do we dig Saddam up and punish him again, or do we just say, “oopps, never mind, no WMDs in Iraq, Obama says so” or do we find someone else for Obama to kill to hide his embarrasment?
                All I know is that I am being lied to, again, to fuel someone’s fears/desires/drive for power and I don’t like it. I am tired of emergencies and I want to plant all four hooves and make ‘em spell out exactly what is going on and exactly what we are planning to do, or make them drag me.
                (I’m sorry Foxfier, I always seem to clash with you. You could be right, but I’m just pissed)

                • That is a major subject change from the claim that gas is not really different from stabbing people.

                  • appologies. I thought we were talking about punishing people for making war crimes possible.

                    • For making them possible? That’s a very, very broad range.

                      For actually doing them? Especially with broad spectrum, internationally banned for longer than living memory items? Much more limited.

                    • And yet they are still being made, sold and stored. If you sell a lunatic chemical weapons, why is there any doubt that the loon will use them?

              • Sorry to leave y’all alone for so long, but I’ve been over at Vox’s blog doing the Who-Whom to Scalzi (rhymes with Palsy) in the comments, there. Foxfier seems to speak quite sensibly on the immediate question,unlike that Crawford person.

                Oh, Syria? I might be happy to ignore them and let them stew in their own juices, except that the previous regime tolerated and protected Christians, and the democratic rebels want to cut our heads off. So much for democracy.

                • “Oh, Syria? I might be happy to ignore them and let them stew in their own juices, except that the previous regime tolerated and protected Christians, and the democratic rebels want to cut our heads off. So much for democracy.”

                  This. Is something that the MSM and the current administration seem to conveniently forget about Assad. Yes he’s a bad dude, but is there any chance of getting someone better? As for as I can see the chances of getting someone as good as Assad are slim to none.

                  • The administration is not ignoring it. They’re not inept. They’re on the other side.
                    As for democracy — it’s not GENETIC but Islam makes people very unsuited for democracy. At least in its present form. It used to be said of Catholicism. And it was probably true back then.

            • Chemical weapons, because of their potential for large scale effect, need to be wholly unacceptable — we cannot “draw a red line” and say that use of this much is okay but use of this much plus one is too much. It would be as absurd as banning bombs above a certain size. So, a binary consequence mode.

              I have to admit I am not overly concerned about the possibility of Assad being framed for using such weapons. I put it in the same category as convicting Al Capone for cheating on his taxes. Ideally both (all) sides would suffer sufficiently to establish a deterrent — but we all know it ain’t gonna happen.

              Genie’s out of her bottle, toothpaste is outta the tube and I don’t expect they can be put back. The President and his (then) SecState screwed up when they blustered their unenforceable threats a year ago. Basic rule of life: don’t write a check unless you know how to cover it.

              • That’s another argument for hitting Assad. Nobody sane is going to use chemical weapons against the US. Why? Because everyone knows that if they did they would become an incandesent cinder that would quickly cool to ambient. Nobody sane is going to use chemical weapons against another group with chemical weapons, because that would lead to them becoming a target (See Nazi Germany). But there are plenty of groups out there without WMD’s. If we in the international community don’t make it absolutely clear that using WMD’s, at all, is indistinguishable from using them against the US or other major power, then the only way those groups can achieve some security is to acquire those weapons themselves. And the more weapons that are floting around the more likely that someone not sane gets their hands on them. And then things really get pear-shaped.

                That’s what’s so goram frustrating about Barry’s incompetent flailing. This is not a hard frakking sell. If he had exercised some bloody LEADERSHIP two years ago, made a case to the American people, brought allies on board, gotten a Congressional resolution when this was an abstract issue, those weapons would probably have never been used and 1500 people might still be alive. But no. Ol’ Window-licker thought that he just had to make a pronouncement and the world would bend to his will. Now we have half a 9/11 dead and a man who pretends to be President of the United FUCKING States flopping around like a inebrated walrus.

                • *Nod*
                  And this is why I’m still waffling, even though all the smart folks I know in person are going F NO!!!!!

                  • There are several good reasons as to why. The problem is that why you are doing it determines how you go about it. Since it’s painfully obvious that nobody in this administration could find a clue with both hands, a map, a flashlight, and Encyclopedia Brown on the case the odds of this making things worse are substantially higher than those of making it better.

                • “Window licker”? As in Tam’s “… knows what the windows on the short bus taste like”…?

                  • Pretty much. I’ve also been known to refer to him as shortbus-in-chief. Never seen the two combined before. It’s…appropriate.

                    • There are probably many people with Downs Syndrome and other severe learning disabilities who are better prepared to defend the Constitution than Barry is. Definitely a lot who are more patriotic, more resolute, more wise.

                      As for the physically disabled folks, they’d mostly run him over and wipe the floor with his golfing butt.

                    • Hey! I’ve been known to lick a window or two m’self to make a point, which is that we strange people can be just as sharp as the Normals, or maybe more so. I mind my favorite old bomber, a B-57 at the Warner Robins museum. I petted it , and licked its poor old crazed-and-clouded canopy, and was photographed while doing so. They left that poor old bomber out in the weather. Sigh!

        • The reasoning went that the reason the latest batch of deaths happened is because that ban on gassing is never enforced– there’s no risk.
          So, make a risk, though focusing on inanimate targets as much as possible to avoid the predictable human shield response they love so much over there.

        • Here’s as good a place as any to clarify….

          I think that I don’t have a good enough grasp of the specific situation and history and entanglements to have a really informed view.

          I have folks whose judgement I trust who have much, much better information than I do, and they think getting involved is a bad idea because it would help the bigger threat– the terrorists. Even if we helped indirectly, by harming Bashar.

          • I didn’t mean that anyone who thought war was a good idea had to be insane — I meant anyone who thought war was a good idea the way the clown car is approaching it, if you know what I mean, had to be nuts.

            • “War might be OK. War the way YOU Are going to do it– EEEE#EEEEEE!@!!!!!”

              Kind of figured, and I think you were quoting someone else at that point anyways, but the joy of writing stuff down is that such a thing can be laid out. (And the joy of here is that it usually doesn’t make any lasting dent.)

      • I’m all for bombing whoever starts winning. Right now we’ve got our number one enemy fighting a strong proxy of our number 2 enemy. It’s the Eastern Front all over again. Except this time we don’t have to worry about either taking over France, so we can afford to sit on the sidelines and do whatever it takes to keep the fighting going. The more bleeding in Syria the less bleeding in Israel or the US.

        • *points* There’s another thinking argument for getting involved.

          I might add loudly stating that if some sane, non-terrorist guys organize, they’re not gonna be bombed.

          • For my next step up in involvement I would set up training camps in Jordan where we could train up a democratic militia force. Wait until the Syrian population gets tired of constant war and send our vetted and supported militia in. Just like what Pakistan did for the Taliban, except less support by terrorists and fewer soccer stadium executions.

            • What is this strange fondness you express for soccer stadia? Execute them all, say I, or at least enough to properly cow the others.

              • While soccer is a foolish thing, and soccer stadia are silly places, they are not entirely without merit. Where else can you see good Italian acting?

                • What is this strange fondness you express for democracy? It has only every worked among my people, the Anglo-Saxons. Prince Metternich said as much at the Congress of Vienna in 1815. Most other people seem to need a strong ruler with a hard hand to make them act right.

                  • Oh, PFUI. Take a powder. I don’t care what Prince blah blah said at a time when each country thought they were a race. Democracy sucks, yes, but is still better than anything else.
                    Look, double blind bullshit. Wanna compare the anglo-saxon content in your veins to those in the North of Portugal? I wouldn’t advise it. We’re all more mixed than you think, and as for culture, it’s not working great for England right now.
                    One man one vote might be a bad idea, but remember the Greeks invented democracy in at least as expansive a form as Prince Metternich knew it.
                    DO try not to be more arrogantly gullible than needed, please.

                    • Sorry, Ma’am. I had in mind hbdchick’s posts on inbred vs. outbred societies, and clannishness, and English individualism. To be frank, my people are at a disadvantage in the World today, because we don’t stick together as everybody else does, not having a very strong visceral racism.

                      “Non Angli, sed Angeli.” (We tend to be good-lookin, ‘specially our Wimminz. Jtg blows on nails, buffs them on vest. )

                    • PFUI I say. Look, kid, you can’t play that game like Vox. Vox is so sharp he sometimes cuts himself, but you’re not at that level.
                      English are not the only ones prone to individualism, and cultures change. If you want to argue that our inanity in giving you a vote because you breathe is destroying society, I’ll bite. If you want to argue even that women as women were in the early 20th century (at least the upper classes who wanted the vote) shouldn’t have it, I’ll bite. It’s arguable. My husband was reading something the other day about how men normally obsessed over world-affairs and business and invention and women over fashion and domestic matters and babies. He laughed because he said he was clearly married to man. And that is where things are different now. I don’t object to a test of world knowledge if we can insure it’s fairly “clean” — it can’t be any more crooked than the current electoral process, either. I can even totally endorse “you have to be a tax payer with skin in the game.” I CANNOT however buy this “racial” or even “cultural” purity nonsense. Cultures change. And every one of fricking you is more mixed than you think. The myth of a world where no one traveled is BS. Dave Freer is right. The human species is a COLONIZING species.
                      So if you want to discuss that democracy as currently instituted in the US is nonsense, yeah okay, fine. We’ve killed the republic and gone to populist democracy which the founders hated.
                      BUT spare me your Jones for a strong man and a boot on other people’s necks. Democracies fail and are stupid — they’re made of humans. BUT NO REGIME FAILS LIKE STRONG MEN REGIMES. NONE. If you disagree, kindly take your behind to Cuba or North Korea.
                      Do not lay your bait where it has no business being, and do not have illusions that you are Vox. You are not.

                    • In my lifetime, there have been (and perhaps still are) societies in which membership confers advantage in society at large—and which are restricted to White Anglo-Saxon Protestants.

                    • Yes, but perhaps not too good to scratch the ancestry of those anglo saxons too deeply ;)

                    • Funny you would say that — ;-) about scratching the surface. A friend of mine who was doing her genealogy found out that her family (around the mid 1800s) were mulattos. They moved to Ohio into an Anglo-saxon (or white if you will) community and were white ever since. The family were so worried about their racial component that a hundred years later when my friend married a Hispanic man, she was ostracized. ;-)

                    • OT: Also in my lifetime, it was still sometimes said that “Negroes, Catholics and Jews” did not quality as “100% American”. It was never, repeat never, a matter of White Males Oppressing Everybody Else.

                    • Unless you’re in a feminist’s mind. That’s how they see things. It’s VERY odd.

                    • GS– oppressive white males– It bothers me that you have swallowed that one… if you go into history, oppression from an opposing group (why do you think we left Africa?) had nothing to do with skin color. It is a human condition…

                    • I don’t think he thinks it’s true. But I might be wrong.

                    • Yep, white males freed slaves. No other color/gender did. Go figure.

                    • GS– I don’t think so cause I still get a sinking feeling when I read the comment. Miscommunication maybe?

                    • Cyn, I think you misunderstood (or maybe I misspoke). Please reread my last sentence.

                      I have to go but will check back later today.

                    • ” It was never, repeat never, a matter of White Males Oppressing Everybody Else.”

                    • Dang, Ma’am. didn’t mean to flick you on a raw spot. As I said to ESR, I’m Odd enough that I get along less well with my own immediate family, who are the people most genetically similar to me, than I do with some people on the Internet whom I’ve never physically met. Please forgive me a pardonable pride in my own people and their accomplishments, even if my closest relatives among them rarely speak to me.

                      As I sometimes point out to some Jews, It is possible to be proud of one’s own people and their accomplishments without cutting down other ethnic groups. (except in a light-hearted, teasing way, of course. At least that’s the charitable way I interpret my Irish Pastor’s bitching and complaining about us Sassenachs.)

                      Good Lord, woman! From the way you reacted, one might think I had proposed coming after you with weapons, or something! You may be Odd, but I think you are neurotypical. You seem to get emotionally upset over what I thought was just an interesting scientific observation about how people behave when considered as large groups. I just thought it was funny that Arab slave traders paid a premium for white women from Northern Europe, and that the Folies Bergere always hired English gals, and that the Pythons wanted English gals for Castle Anthrax in “The Holy Grail”, but had to settle for Scots gals.

                      Your people may have found the way around Africa, founded some of the earliest colonies in Africa, Asia, and the Americas, but mine are the best-looking people on the planet, and don’t you forget it! Tthhwbbthhtbtt!

          • “I might add loudly stating that if some sane, non-terrorist guys organize, they’re not gonna be bombed.”

            And if unicorns wore galoshes, gold wouldn’t splash on our wings.

            There ARE no “sane, non-terrorist guys” on EITHER SIDE of this fight.

            • I think you missed the point that, rather than saying “we’ll bomb anyone that gets ahead” and then be bound if someone sane does somehow show up, we’ve got a carrot and deniability if we get bored or someone decent shows up.

            • But there are sane, non-terrorist guys in Syria. They’re not in the fight right now, because sane, but if we started paring down on the psychopaths on both sides they would eventually realize that they have enough power to stop the madness.

        • …Somehow, I suddenly have a mental image of the Gunny going up and barking out something about how the American national interest is to have a nice, peaceful, law-abiding bunch, and so they’ll bomb the hell out of any thugs, terrorists, murderers, pirates or general jackwagons who have the misfortune to get our attention on a bad day.

          Ya want bad cop, I can GIVE you bad cop…..

          (Note: there’s probably a reason I shouldn’t be ruler of the world, or even trusted to be sent back in time– the piles of bodies would make even you blanch.)

          • No. If they offer to send you back in time, the answer is “not without Sarah.” Killing is messy and tiring work. you’ll need help!

            • If you’re forming an away team to perform percussive maintenance on history I’d like to volunteer. I’ll even wear the red shirt.

              • Hmm… Percussive maintenance on History…

                You know, the American Revolution was a pretty unlikely win. Maybe someone went back to make it happen… (Note: I’m not enough of a historian to write that story, but anyone else is welcome to).

              • Somehow, I suspect that history would still be nasty even if we eliminated known bad guys after they started doing horrific things. (Ie, no killing Kid Hitler, but totally OK killing Saddam before his boys went into “bad horror movies” territory.)

                • Who said anything about kill? Give someone’s mom a beneath skin contraceptive implant at the right time… ;)

                • What about killing Marx and Engels, Lenin and Stalin? What about Pol Pot and whoever it was that killed all those Armenians. My favorite back in time fantasy would be to take some modern (20th-21st century) armaments back in time to make sure that all the persecutors of Jews in the past got a taste of their own medicine.

                  Or more positively take some transport aircraft (C-130’s?) and rescue all the Portuguese Jews.
                  Additionally take a few wings of Israeli fighters and bombers and rescue Jews from the Holocaust.

                  • Many of the root cause guys were expressing an existing current–doesn’t remove their guilt, but means removing them wouldn’t fix anything.

                    I really like the “you want them gone? Fine, WE will take them!” solution.

                  • If we are going to do pre-emptive trans-temporal murder, I say get L. Ron Hubbard first. He was a disgrace to both the Science Fiction community and the United States Navy.

      • Problem with that is that we don’t actually know who did what to who, or if it was even a legitimate attack. The symptoms they described in the international media do not match any known chemical agent belonging to Syria. So, what the hell happened there, then? Industrial accident?

        I’ve seen one source that says that the evidence best matches a failed attempt at a thermobaric weapon strike. If that’s the case, then what? Are thermobarics now considered as WMD?

        A pox on all their houses. The people now trying to overthrow Assad are Al Qaeda, and given the amount of support and cover he provided them while we were engaged in Iraq, about all I can say is “What goes around, comes around…”.

        This whole thing reminds of what the world would have looked like had the Germans and Italians gone at it inside Switzerland, instead of trying to take over the world. Huge mess, and I can’t really find myself willing to root for either side. And, the local “innocents”? These are the people who willingly put their governments into power, and then supported them for long decades of terror support and war crimes. Assad’s regime was built on the foundation of his father’s, and that was a horror show. Yet, everyone in Syria was perfectly happy, so long as the good times rolled on. The rape of Lebanon, the incessant attacks on Israel? All good, no worries. I find it hard to sympathize with them.

        • Bryan Suits of The Dark Secret Place, who was among other things one of the guys who organized his guys to deal with this stuff, said that it was pretty obviously a chem attack.
          His current job is, when not hired out to go do stuff he’s not allowed to talk specifically about, being a weekly talk show host who specializes in the GWOT.
          Also, those folks I know who are deeper in the weeds than I voice no such lack of belief that it was neurotoxin chemical weapons of a sort the Syrian gov’t has.

          Additionally:
          “MSF can neither scientifically confirm the cause of these symptoms nor establish who is responsible for the attack,” said Dr. Janssens. “However, the reported symptoms of the patients, in addition to the epidemiological pattern of the events—characterized by the massive influx of patients in a short period of time, the origin of the patients, and the contamination of medical and first aid workers—strongly indicate mass exposure to a neurotoxic agent. This would constitute a violation of international humanitarian law, which absolutely prohibits the use of chemical and biological weapons.”
          From doctors without borders, press release from August 24, 2013. Not linking so that the Hostess probably won’t have to dig this out of the spam.

          • Then let Bryan Suits carry out the fight.

          • Pre-supposing that he’s right, and a chemical attack did take place, then comes the next step: Who did it?

            I’m seeing everything from the faintly ridiculous to the vaguely plausible for the “who did it”. Some are saying that Prince Bandar supplied nerve agent to the insurgents, others are saying the government fired the stuff.

            That kind of piss-poor intelligence is how you lose a war. We don’t even know who the bad actors are, here, and given the likelihood that someone is doing another al Dura to play us, I say we just don’t play.

            Where is the overwhelming national interest, here? Please, someone point to it, and don’t bother with “Well, chemical weapons are bad, ‘mmmkay?”. We’ve already beaten that horse to death, and the consensus was that George Bush was wrong to go into Iraq for similar reasons. Why has that changed?

            • No offense, but you’re not adding anything by asking “Who did it.”

              The consideration of a false flag operation has been raised since, oh, five minutes after I first heard it? It’s an obvious question to most sensible folks– thus including most folks here, but excluding most of the mainstream media– because of Obama’s ultimatum.

              There’s no evidence that it wasn’t Bashar, and he doesn’t even try to claim it wasn’t.

              Incidentally, your “consensus” is false. We don’t all agree W was wrong to go in for WMDs, and the TV “consensus” is that he was wrong because there supposedly weren’t any.

              • Soooo… You’re saying the question of “Who did it” is irrelevant?

                How’s that work, again? Obama blasts the shit out of the Assad regime, enables the takeover of Syria by the FSA factioned with al Qaeda, and then we find out that the whole thing was a false flag operation?

                How about either a.) Staying the hell out of Syria, or b.) figuring out who did what, so our counterstrikes actually make a point besides “Don’t piss off Obama–He might do a “rush to judgment” and blow your military away.

                Until we know who did this, any form of military strike is just going to make more issues for us to solve. Say we do blast Assad’s military, and then we do find out it was a false-flag operation. What then? Do we pick targets belonging to the FSA, and blast those, out of some sense of fairness?

                When B’rer Rabbit proffers the Tar Baby, the best option is to just walk away, and leave him to his issues. The Syrian people had no problem with Assad when he was helping kill American troops in Iraq, along with Iraqi civilians who’d done nothing to Syria. So, I’ve really got no problem with the Assad regime killing their own people–They deserve each other. Once they get things sorted out, and are willing to abide by civilized rules of conduct, I’ve got no problem welcoming them to the civilized world. As is? Screw them. All of them.

                • Soooo… You’re saying the question of “Who did it” is irrelevant

                  No.

                  Please bother to read what I post.

                  Due to that rather extreme misreading, I won’t waste my time reading what you wrote afterwards— if you decide to read and actually PAY ATTENTION to what I actually wrote, I’ll read and respond.

                  • Going to have to disagree here. If that’s not what you meant, you should not have lead with this:

                    No offense, but you’re not adding anything by asking “Who did it.”

                    Because that statement means that his question is irrelevant. Which means that it doesn’t matter who did it.

                    Sometimes, people may misunderstand what you’re writing, even when it should be clear, but sometimes, what you meant and what comes out when it’s in text are two different things.

                    • I lead with that because the “question” is almost as dead as Kirk’s question “was it chemical weapons.”

                      Folks already considered if it was a false flag. On inspection, there’s no reason to think that it was.

                      Asking a question after it has already been asked– “was it chemical weapons? Was it a false flag?”– doesn’t add anything to the conversation.

                      Especially since I had already pointed out the possibility of a false flag.

                    • This, then, would be a case where what you said did not convey what you meant. Had you included a “because” in the sentence, including what you just said, it would have been more clear.

                      Believe me, I’m intimately familiar with typing things that are perfectly clear to me, but are not when someone else reads them, because they do not have the same things at the front of their mind, for context, that I do.

                    • It was in context of the line of conversation- can easily see how it wouldn’t be clear from, say, the emails of comments!

                    • When the very next sentence explains what she meant — not that the question is irrelevant, but that the question has been considered plenty of times before — I don’t think it’s asking too much for someone to keep reading one more sentence to gain understanding.

              • Actually “who dunnit” is a huge issue. If it is a false flag attack to draw the US into the fight it is very serious.
                Also, Bashar Assad did say he didn’t do it, though it was to Izvestia, carried on the AP and reported in the Huffington Post.
                I still, by the way, think lobbing explosives to wage a form of homeopathic war in the middle east is a really bad idea. The amount that is harmless if it is ragweed is toxic if it turns out to be Plutonium

      • William O. B'Livion

        And if it’s a false flag operation by a contractor for an intelligence agency who do we hit?

  5. I fully expect to hear the Excusing Left (possibly starting with Chris Matthews) pick up this line of argument in three, two, one….

  6. Christopher M. Chupik

    Obama and Kerry are trying to go to war in the Mideast over chemical weapons. Have I somehow crossed over into an alternate universe? Does Sarah have a goatee?

    • Kerry to the Senate:

      SEC. KERRY: Mr. Chairman, it would be preferable not to [have prohibition language], not because there is any intention or any plan or any desire whatsoever to have boots on the ground. And I think the president will give you every assurance in the world, as am I, as has the secretary of defense and the chairman. But in the event Syria imploded, for instance, or in the event there was a threat of a chemical weapons cache falling into the hands of al-Nusra or someone else and it was clearly in the interest of our allies and all of us, the British, the French and others, to prevent those weapons of mass destruction falling into the hands of the worst elements, I don’t want to take off the table an option that might or might not be available to a president of the United States to secure our country.

      So our policy is to topple Assad, thereby facilitating terrorists’ access to Syria’s chemical arsenal, thereby justifying a full-blown intervention.

      The ruling class in action.

      Afaic shooting some cruise missiles at Syria without Congressional authorization would not constitute, at this time, the high crimes and misdemeanors required for impeachment, but it would rise to that level if the consequences are adverse enough.

      • John Kerry is an exceptionally stupid person. Joe Biden level of stupid. The only difference is that when Joe Biden says something that stupid, he turns on this grin that seems to belong on a 1 year old that just filled his diapers.

        • Seeing Biden grin during the Vice Presidental debates when talking about Iran getting nukes reminded me of The Joker and not funny Ceaser Romero Joker but the Heath Ledger one.

          Creppy

          • Doesn’t remind me of Ledger. Instead, it just makes me wonder who has a clean diaper handy and would Biden fit atop one of those foldout Koala bathroom changing tables.

    • Ew. No. I have hair removing wax for that. Ew.

    • No, but Palin has an eye patch. Does that count?

      M

  7. Posted this morning to a few friends and family. Figured I’d share with y’all as well. Includes my thoughts on Syria.

    I see that Ariel Castro, that doofus who kept three women captive for years in his basement, went and hung himself. I’m conflicted. On the one hand he just saved the state millions of dollars to house him for the rest of his miserable life, but on the other hand I’m sorry that he missed the opportunity to be the prison bitch for all those years to come.

    Prison officials at Fort Levenworth have forcibly shaved the Fort Hood shooter Hassan. He was allowed to keep his scraggly beard during the trial in spite of Army regulations, but since his conviction and sentencing they own his sorry ass. Maybe he will borrow a clue from Castro and save everyone further bother. Once you get past the act of the shootings themselves the real crime in all this was and remains the continued label of workplace violence rather than terrorism. Victims and their survivors remain denied the benefits due them for such an obvious act of terrorism.

    If a grand daughter of mine ever even thinks about acting anything like Miley Cyrus I will be in line right behind her daddy to tan her bare butt. Then we will seal her in a used Jack Daniels whiskey barrel and maybe let her out when she turns 30.

    I am not fundamentally opposed to kicking some butt in Syria, but wasn’t that what the UN was supposed to be for? If we’re going to be the world’s cops then we need to kick the UN out of their prime New York real estate and also stop funding them since they don’t seem to have any useful purpose any more. This whole Syria thing seems more an effort to prop up our sorry excuse for a leader than a legitimate retaliation for use of chemical weapons.

    Old Uncle Lar

    • Even “better,” Uncle Lar, the head of the UN says that if the US attacks Syria without the UN Security Council first approving it, the US will be violating international law.

      I must say, I was delighted to see Code Pfink haranguing Kerry at the Senate hearings yesterday.

      • I turned on Fox News yesterday and that was the very first thing I saw, and I saw it as it happened. That was very, very funny. It’s not every day that the treachery of a traitor in high places comes back to haunt him on national television. It was hilarious watching Kerry hem and haw and try to explain why this time the war was important (for comparison, in the Vietnam War, we were bound by a formal treaty to support the South).

        • I wish I could think of some reason for the maybe impending attack more convincing than Obama has some big toys and he can’t resist playing with them.

          • He has some big scandals and needs a distraction. He said something stupid and got called on it. His foreign policy “brain trust” places the interests of anyone opposed to the US ahead of those of the US.

            Take your pick.

      • As a practical matter, law is whatever the cops say it is. Since the US is the closest thing to cops on the international scene it really doesn’t matter what anyone at the UN says. To the extent they agree with us they are aligned with international law. When they disagree they are irrelevant.

        The UN has long outlived its usefulness. We should tell them that since we have 1/3 the population of China and India we’ll give them 1/3 of what those countries pay in dues. And we send an intern to the Security Council to veto everything. Completely ignore the General Assembly. Then we establish an alliance among the democratic nations of the world. UK, Japan, Australia, India, Iraq as a provisional member, etc. Tell China and Russia to pound sand until they grow up.

    • Where is that ARRR button (translation from English Pirate– like)

    • Tam had the best take on Castro:

      I awoke this morning to find Ariel Castro’s lawyer all up in my grill on the television, being huffy and indignant that his client hadn’t been prevented from doing the right thing and making a windchime of himself in his prison cell.

      Mr. Weintraub, understand me clearly here: I don’t care that Castro wasn’t stopped from throwing himself a necktie party. Had it been up to me, they’d have walked into the cell, thumped a Makarov and a single round on the table, and walked out to await the sound of the gunshot. Your guy was using up oxygen that could have been put to better use elsewhere.

  8. omg– nuke the moon… excellent explanation. I was confused as well… Thanks for clearing that up. BTW I am getting ready to write about aliens (or at least human aliens in space). Does that count as the strange jittery man mumbling about aliens?

  9. Actually the US under Obama is more like “the nutter on the bus(train)” than the meth-head on the street. You see you can get away from the meth-head by running but you can’t get away from the nutter on the bus because there’s no way to exit the bus so he can always get after you. Also, just like the nutter on the bus, you can be sure no one is going to try and step in and stop them from randomly doing stuff because that just attracts the nutter’s attention to the person intervening and so that person (country) gets beaten up too.

  10. I think that Obama’s idea is trash everything about America and leave her surrounded by enemies. If you want to know what the O’s going to do, pick the stupidest available option.

    • It’s only stupid if you do not believe that his intent is to bring American exceptionalism down to the level of the third world hell holes he grew up in.
      Let’s face facts. The man loathes and detests everything this country stands for, that’s what he was fed from his mama’s teat and all through his formative years growing up amongst marxists and other assorted America bashers. He does not believe that we deserve what we have when others go without simply because the world refuses to acknowledge how unfair it all is. Far better that we all are dragged down into the mud than any of us think we’re better than the rest of the world.

  11. Finally, a chance to cram down their Progressive Transnationalist throats every moronic anti-war slogan the Left has shouted since Vietnam.

    Make Falafel, Not War!

    I want me a Nobama t-shirt with a caption claiming “I Got Your Red Line Right Here”.

  12. Christopher M. Chupik

    Here’s something curious: The hacker organization Anonymous is hacking the Syrian Army. The question is: why? I get the impression that Anonymous is the usual leftie-anarchist bunch who don’t like America. So why are they hacking the Syrians? It’s almost like they’re doing what Obama wants. And that doesn’t make any sense, does it?

    http://pjmedia.com/tatler/2013/09/03/anonymous-strikes-at-syrian-electronic-army/

    • Well the SEA appear to have shown Anon some ideas Anon wishes they had thought of themselves. And also deliciously exploiting those holes while completely forgetting to do basic security themselves. I think it’s more jealousy than anything else

  13. How is the line about the French a “low blow”? Their national military heroes are a foreigner and a teenage girl.

  14. While I don’t agree with the “everyone with a functional brain says we shouldn’t” claim (for a more mild form of Nuke The Moon– you smack the dog’s nose when you catch him) I think that the impolite motivation is probably largely correct.

  15. So President Daddy Issues is going to bomb Syria. Why can’t he just go to therapy like the rest of us?

  16. Each year I ask my mom what she would like for Christmas.

    She usually says “World Peace.”

    But I keep telling her I don’t want to kill that many people.

  17. Always remember Chicago Politics maybe this is the meaning of Red Line

    Red Line (‘L’)
    The Red Line provides 24-hour train service between Howard on the North Side and Ashland/63rd on the South Side via downtown Chicago.
    …..
    Our goal is to provide a number of convenient travel options, and to minimize the project’s impact as much as possible.

    Or maybe there’s a Vlad the Impaler model for nuke the moon –

    It was reported that an invading Ottoman army turned back in fright when it encountered thousands of rotting corpses on the banks of the Danube.

    • Like president Populist ever rode freakin’ public transportation, or knows how to read a schedule.

      • Oh, I’m sure he knows how to read the schedule, Bob. How else would he be able to direct “his” protesters to the right place?

        Mew

        p.s. please see “People of the CTA” as mentioned above. Yes, they’re real.

  18. One of the ways that the US has been exceptional on the world stage for quite a long time is that we’ve been top dog without scaring every other power into a balancing coalition against us. Pretty much everybody who looked to be capable of becoming permanent top dog up to the rise of the USA pretty quickly had such a coalition created out of normally squabbling other powers.

    Obama seems to be dead set on scaring everybody into that anti-US balancing coalition which means we end up screwed. Badly. On a long-term basis.

    • The usual reason to form a coalition is fear of aggression by the Big Power. Today, it’s fear of the Big Power’s incompetence. A drunken elephant will squash things whether it careens around or collapses into stupor.

      Another historical first for Obama and our ruling class.

    • The biggest threat posed by US power was generally that of being accidentally stepped on by a clumsy if well-intended oaf. (Think Duchy of Grand Fenwick.)

      The world should tremble at the vision of Obama and Kerry feeling the need to prove their credibility.

  19. Had I been President on 9/11/2001, the very next day I would have appeared on all networks, and shown the audience a top hat full of slips of paper. I would have said “Ladies, Gentlemen, and assorted Barbarians; yesterday, Islamic fanatics attacked the United States and killed slightly less than four thousand of our citizens. This hat contains the names of (number supplied by staff) cities in Islamic countries. I am going to pick three names out of the hat. Those cities, and Mecca, and Medina will then be obliterated by nuclear missiles. We do not pretend that we know where the terrorists who masterminded the attacks on us are. We do not pretend that the destruction of these cities is just. We simply say to the world; ‘Leave us the F*ck Alone, because there’s more where that came from.'”.

    I expect I would have been impeached. But I also expect that we would largely get left alone for the next fifty years.

    • ….I’m not sure if I’m horrified, or wish that something more minor but similar had happened….

      • I like Schofield’s idea. I wish that we had taken and maintained a strong line since the end of WWII.

      • Shortly after 9/11 I responded to some vile progs who were claiming we were fighting a war against Islam by pointing out that if that were our intention the Stars and Strips would already be flying over Mecca.

        • Well, duh, that’s a clear target.

          Guessing the point was missed.

        • They expressed the racist view that Islam is a Faith of Terror?

          Geeze Louise, I thought Islam is a religion being high-jacked by a coterie of radical extremists. You have to really be some kind of sick to condemn a whole religion because they have been slow to quash their radicals.

          • Nah, they just though the whole “War on Terror” was a code for “Let’s kill us some brown people, yeehaw!”

            This person wasn’t terribly bright even by vile prog standards.

  20. Thank you for this observation.

    I hadn’t realized that Libertarian Political Strategists have put into effect a master plan of Malign Neglect to make the world more Libertarian, at least in the long term.

    For example.

    NASA has lost the shuttle and having to rely on private companies for launch services. Or at least semi private if you count the Russians,.

    By reducing the size and power of US military forces, formerly allied nations to increase the size of their military and scale back the social welfare and increasing the level of freedom in the world. Just check the news on how Japan, Australia and India arming.

    By making health insurance unaffordable is inspiring the use of direct payments to doctors and hospitals. Some of it under the table to hide it from taxes. What could be more libertarian then that.

    By discrediting the entire federal government and ruling class it is inspiring people to rise up and take their freedom.
    Freedom cannot be given. It can only be taken.

  21. “No Blood for Ego” Yes!

    The problem here is that Obama isn’t going to Nuke the moon, he’s going to shoot bottle rockets at it, and hope for minimal damage.

  22. If we were going to fire missiles into Syria because various factions in Syria have been pissing us off for decades and pretty much anybody important that we vaporize is excess to requirements, then I could be for the idea. Sadly, we aren’t.

  23. Unfortunately, the Nuke the Moon shirts are no longer available and are basically collectors items.

    But that doesn’t change it being a sound strategy.

  24. Ooh! Ooh! I know! I know!

    Door #1, Door #2, or Door #3:

    1. Various pressure groups and lobbyists get together with Congressional staff and write a resolution of 2000 pages or so. At a joint press conference, Boehner and Pelosi declare the House must pass the resolution to find out what’s in it. Harry Reid adds that he deems it has already passed the Senate.

    2. Congress passes a Double Secret Resolution because the terms of engagement are a matter of national security. What, you’re against national security? You don’t support the troops? What’s your Social Security number? Where do you live?

    3. Both #1 and #2.

  25. Unfortunately the Nuke the Moon tshirts are no longer available and are basically now collectors items.

    The strategy is still sound, though.

  26. I believe that Obama has gotten twitterpated by the notion of “The Revolution” in the general sense of how the Left has been advocating a revolution in this country, and doesn’t realize how different the people acting over in the Middle East are from even many of the most radical of the ones here. As with his fellow travelers, he doesn’t look beyond the overthrow of the existing regime to see how the aftermath will look.

    Either that, or he really IS an undercover Muslim, using Taqquiya to hide his true intentions. Either way would look pretty much the same from outside.

  27. The French are on-board because Syria used to be part of the French Mandate in the Middle East [ http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/French_Mandate_for_Syria_and_the_Lebanon ]; they lost it in the 1940s, and would like to have it back.

    For adminstration, look to their “overseas colonies” in Africa (basically, any place where one of the currencies is the CFA or CFP franc: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/CFA_franc ; http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/CFP_franc ). They don’t run the places directly, but the locals know to step aside when the French show up. This is a model the American Empire should be looking to, really.

    • I don’t care to find alongside the French. And I especially won’t fight with them behind me. Having them as enemies can be comforting.

      Don’t forget that during Clinton’s Serbian intervention, the USAF lost a stealth fighter (F117) because a French officer gave the Serbs information about the strike routes planned.

  28. “If we go in everytime a regime acts badly to its own people, we’re going to…”

    Invade ourselves repeatedly.

  29. If the current administration nuked the moon, they’d probably hit the other side for environmental reasons.

  30. The “Nuke the Moon” strategy has been successfuly test driven on a small scale basis by the Kim family. It continues to work for them, it should work for us if we go all in.

  31. Christopher M. Chupik

    Funny thing is, I rewatched the original Planet of the Apes, and was reminded that the astronaut’s remarked on the absence of the Moon. That means someone in the POTA timeline nuked the Moon!

  32. Has anyone else noticed how much John “Botox” Kerry looks like Odo from Deep Space Nine?

    • John the French and his Scary Chin. I decree it.

    • Christopher M. Chupik

      American foreign policy has been left in the Lurch.

    • I hadn’t really seen a closeup of John Kerry since the 2004 election season. The warranty on his cosmetic surgery work has clearly expired. That face of his clearly wants to leave the country without him.

    • Hey! You take that back! Odo was a charming, polite, honorable fellow that was totally wiling to suffer great pain to save someone he didn’t even like because he thought it was right, while Kerry is a dishonorable liar and possibly a murderous scum!

      • I was going to say that Kerry looks like a dragon shifter, but a certain character started screaming in my mind. So, no.

        • I asked Snowy the Killer Mule for his thoughts. Translated and edited for our gracious hostess’s standards: “He bears a most unflattering resemblance to those Greyland cross mules you told His Grace not to try. And even if I wasn’t a gelded Jack, I wouldn’t chase that.” *shrug*

  33. Re: today’s blog I can only say, “AMEN?”

    Re” RL Reid’s comment, I think he looks like Lurch from a long ago and IMHO not very funny comedy series. He’s nearly as interesting as well.

  34. I can see it, but, like Kerry, Odo was a shapeshifter.

    • Christopher M. Chupik

      Please don’t compare one of my favorite ST characters to John Kerry. ;-)

      • I still think he looks like Snidely Whiplash . . .

        On Wed, Sep 4, 2013 at 8:36 PM, According To Hoyt wrote:

        > ** > Christopher M. Chupik commented: “Please don’t compare one of my > favorite ST characters to John Kerry. ;-)” >

      • Sorry, but I spent a couple of hours last night trying to recall what character Kerry looked like. Out of respect for your feelings, I will avoid trying to include side-by-side photos of the two. Besides, I really liked the Odo character as well.

        • ….Blast it, I was going to say something and then my mind ran off on the whole “Odo” and “QuasimODO” and related things….

          I think the gist was that there might be some resemblance because Kerry probably had some surgery, while Odo as trying to “make” a face, but I really don’t remember and the only reason I posted at all is that I thought maybe the odo/modo thing might make up for it….

  35. I posted a create & exercise report yesterday but was the only one at ATH to do so afaik. I see none today.

    • Ah! 3 miles. Half a book marked up for fix up. 4k words.

      • Mile and a half, spent forty minutes on one footnote and one bibliography citation, and another half hour pounding my head against the desk because of a corrupted blank CD that was discovered only after I took it to the print shop. But I did do a quick revision of the novella that I just finished (too many people in the last scene), and started doing edits on some short stories.

    • Frustrating day, the more so because the weather was good & I felt good on waking up.

      Still stuck at mile distance. Ordered a microphone to record/rehearse my business pitch. My quixotic calculation… :-( .

      Called AAA when car wouldn’t start at the supermarket. Hopefully nothing worse than a 10-year-old dying battery. I’ll see tomorrow.

      • I didn’t get much exercise besides walking fast down hospital corridors, and then standing around in hospital corridors. (My grandma’s laid up, though getting better again.) Granted, this beats standing around funeral homes, so I’m not complaining.

        I should be getting out and exercising in the morning, but I usually work on writing in the morning, and then I have to stick close so I can go to the hospital later. And then I have trouble getting to sleep, so maybe I should exercise in the evening; but I’m tired then. Vicious circle.

  36. One question I don’t think has been addressed in the Syria matter is the matter of precedent. Stipulate that I think we had every right (and duty) to depose Assad for his assistance to our enemies in Iraq. Stipulate that I think the present administration incompetent of doing anything more complicated than stealing an election from a blind Republican. Stipulate as well that I find their arguments for our involvement in Syria, our strategy in Syria and our plans going forward are incoherent, duplicitous and naive.

    The question remains whether we should establish a precedent of involving ourselves in a civil war simply because “banned” weapons were used, whomever by. If Egypt uses poison gas against the Muslim Brotherhood, do we bomb them? If the Saudis clean out an infestation? How about if Zimbabwe gasses a crowd? Iran? Russia? France? If we use chemical weapons against our own people (as was done at Waco against the Koresh compound) does that grant the “International Community” (snigger) carte blanche to punch our nose?

    I am suuuuure the administration has looked at those questions and considered their implications.

    One more stipulation: acknowledged – matters of precedent only actually matter with Republican politicians. Democrat politicians are excused by the Media and their own party (but I repeat myself) any inconsistency (or outright contradiction) in their policies.

  37. Before this Administration takes any action in Syria, shouldn’t they enunciate an exit strategy?

    Given their demonstrated inability to devise an entrance strategy, we must require them to develop a better exit strategy than “Run away.”

    • I deeply loath the very concept of “exit strategy.” Our exit strategy should be “First we win, then we exit. Maybe.”

      • I admit to being partial to Rome’s “exit strategy” from Carthage.

        But there’s no reason to inform the Vile Progs of that before demanding they come up with one. As Comrade Alinsky said, make them live by to their own arguments.

        • We have no Cato to remind us. Gah, he was a dull SOB at parties.

        • ______ Delenda est certainly has its place, but it’s a bit harder to pull off in the modern era.

          The problem with making them live by their rules is that it grants those rules a certain legitimacy. I would much rather simply ignore the rules, coupled with copious insults to those who would try and foist them on us.

    • They have one they thought worked really good in Viet Nam: Bomb, declare victory, go home, blame the Republicans for the dead and maimed, claim it was un-winnable when criticized about the casualties when the bad-guys commit genocide against our allies. It looks to be working to spec in Iraq right now.

  38. “But I’m hoping for the first. Well done, presidential advisers. Let’s nuke the moon Syria.”

    See now, if we were really going to nuke Syria I could see an argument for it. It would be following protocol, which says the US can’t be bothered to keep a stock of every type of WMD, so we will respond to ANY WMD attack with nukes. If we turned a good sized portion of Syria into glass we would achieve at least half of the ‘nuke the moon’ strategy. Everyone would think we are crazy, now whether they would see us as scary crazy enough that when they seen us walking down the sidewalk they would cross the street to avoid attracting our attention would remain to be seen.
    Tossing a few Tomahawks into some bare sand on the other hand also provides the “Whoa, their crazy dude” reaction. Unfortunately it shows us to be crazy like the guy sitting on the floor rocking back and forth and humming to himself, and flinching away and whimpering whenever anyone gets within ten feet of him.

    • Insight found at Urgent Agenda:

      The former head of the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) blamed President Obama for limiting U.S. options in Syria, and said he was dubious the U.S. military could achieve the goal of preventing the Assad regime from using chemical weapons again.

      “This could fail,” Michael Hayden said on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.”

      Hayden said that Obama’s “red line” talk put the “prestige and credibility” of the U.S. at risk, and was now forcing the White House’s hand on Syria.

      “[The president’s comments] do make a difference, they put the prestige of our president, they put the prestige and credibility of the United States of America at risk,” Hayden said.

      “I thought it was an unwise comment when he made it about a year ago, but it has consequences, it has put us on the line that we would act in the face of these kinds of actions, and there are a lot of audiences for this, not just the Syrians.”

      [SNIP]

      Hayden said that if Obama had never set a red line, the U.S. would have a lot more options on the table.

      “We would be in a position where we would have to consider acting,” he said. “But I also think we would have given ourselves a bit more space to begin building an international coalition, not to feel that we would have to act unilaterally.”

  39. Or, y’know, they could have spent the money on something wasteful, like gas masks for “our” rebels in Syria or to enable schoolkids to tour the White House.

    Feds Spending $2.2 Million to Study Lesbian Obesity
    NIH warned sequestration budget cuts could delay medical breakthroughs

    BY: Elizabeth Harrington
    The federal government has spent $2.2 million studying why three quarters of lesbians are obese despite sequestration-mandated budget cuts that critics warned could “delay progress in medical breakthroughs.”

    The National Institutes of Health awarded an additional $682,873 to Brigham and Women’s Hospital for the study on July 17. The project had received previous grants of $778,622 in 2011, and $741,378 in 2012. Total funding has reached $2,202,873.

    The project has survived budget cuts due to sequestration, which the NIH warned would “delay progress in medical breakthroughs.”

    [SNIP]

    The NIH said cuts to research are “delaying progress in medical breakthroughs,” including the development of cancer drugs and research on a universal flu vaccine.

    The study on disparities between sexual orientation and obesity continues to receive funding.

    “Obesity is one of the most critical public health issues affecting the U.S. today,” the grant’s “public health relevance” statement reads. “Racial and socioeconomic disparities in the determinants, distribution, and consequences of obesity are receiving increasing attention; however, one area that is only beginning to be recognized is the striking interplay of gender and sexual orientation in obesity disparities.”

    [SNIP]

    Thus far, the study has yielded one report, published in January, which found that gay and bisexual males had a “greater desire for toned muscles than completely and mostly heterosexual males.”

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