Thursday, December 30, 2004

Dude, you're supposed to eat brie, not rub it on your person

Via the Daou Report, I stumbled across this bit of exceptionally bad writing from a blog called Southern Appeal:

To me, Sontag was one of those writers that lots of people, especially "correct people" in literary circles, keep copies of their work on prominent display, but have actually read very little of. I know that outside of tiny excerpts, I haven't read anything by her, although of course I'm usually hardly correct in any measure. But just reading this obit in Newsday tells me I haven't missed much.

"So when I go to a Patti Smith concert, I enjoy, participate, appreciate and am tuned in better because I’ve read Nietzsche. The main reason I read is that I enjoy it. There’s no incompatibility between observing the world and being tuned into an electronic, multimedia, multi-tracked, McLuhanite world and enjoying what can be enjoyed about rock ’n’ roll."

That's the kind of statement that makes people in black turtlenecks, granny glasses, and Birkenstocks nod their heads in emphatic, brie-scented agreement, and the rest of us go, "Huh?" And the rest of us are right.

That's the kind of writing that makes red-faced people in dirty wife beaters and stained, baggy boxers belch and nod their heads in emphatic, Vienna sausage-scented agreement, whilst scratching their ample, hairy, soft bellies. It makes the rest of us roll our eyes and mutter, "What a maroon." Outside of that tiny excerpt, I haven't read Southern Appeal, but just reading that one post tells me I'm not missing much.

Incidentally, why do these Babbitts speak of brie as if it were some strange, exotic foodstuff? They've been selling that shit in the Piggly Wiggly for years, y'all.


Wednesday, December 29, 2004

Shorter (Andrew Sullivan guest blogger) Reihan Salam: "The way to combat religious fanaticism is to pander to religious fanatics."

At least that's what it looks to me like he's saying. If somebody thinks he's saying something else, feel free to enlighten me.

Via Alicublog. "Shorter" concept from busybusybusy . . .

Top THIS, you blue state elitist Digby commenters!

I bet y'all don't have this kind of fun in your fancy blue states:

MOUNTAIN REST - Step right up folks, come see the three-legged chicken. And it's no joke, says the sign.
The golden-brown three-legged beauty pecks its way around a pen behind the Mountain Top Trading Post in Mountain Rest.

Rick Pelfrey, who assists his mother, Maybelle Pelfrey, in running the family-owned business, said he bought the chicken more than a month ago from a friend for $100.

A sign outside the trading post reads, "For a dollar you can see a three-legged chicken, it's alive - no joke."

Taped in one upper corner of the sign is the first dollar Pelfrey's sideshow spectacle earned him.

More than 170 people have since paid to view the chicken, which shares a pen with a rooster and a smaller chicken.

Word-of-mouth is partly responsible for much of the attention the chicken has drawn to the trading post, which is known for its hot-boiled peanuts, Pelfrey said.

Update: Who do y'all think would win a tic-tac-toe contest - the three-legged chicken of Mountain Rest, or new South Carolina State Board of Education appointee Ron Wilson?

Raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens

I'll always remember Christmas, 2004 as the day I first heard the phrase "the homosexual agenda" come out of my mother's mouth.


Friday, December 24, 2004

No blogging 'til Monday

I'll be celebrating Festivus. As if my life depended upon it.

I leave you with this heartwarming Christmas story:

A karaoke performer who stabbed a heckler at a James Island bar died after he was tackled by bystanders, authorities said.

Alton Ray Smith, 39, of Folly Beach, died about 1 a.m. Wednesday at the Medical University of South Carolina Hospital, Charleston County chief deputy coroner Rae Wooten said.

Smith stabbed a man who criticized the performance late Tuesday at Skipper’s Sports Grill, witnesses said. Several men tackled Smith and held him until police arrived.

The altercation played a part in Smith’ death, but more tests are needed to determine how he died, Wooten said. No one has been charged in the death, Charleston police Lt. Richard Moser said.

Robert Citrolo, 32, of James Island, remained in the hospital Wednesday, where he was being treated for three wounds to his back and a punctured lung, police said.

Happy holidays, readers! No, really. I mean it. Really. I swear! Stop looking at me like that!

No, they don't, you stupid &$@#

"Even in the most blighted households, American children have DVD players." Meghan Cox Gurdon (via tbogg)

I'd like to invite this ignorant woman to visit some "blighted households" in Williamsburg County, SC, to see if she can find some mother*&#$ing DVD players.

Please excuse the profanity - I'm deep into the spirit of Festivus.

(Post later edited to remove certain words that even Dick Cheney wouldn't say - well, maybe he would)


Wednesday, December 22, 2004

Fashion Police Avert Tragedy

From CNN:

LEXINGTON, Kentucky (AP) -- A teenager is suing her school district for barring her from the prom last spring because she was wearing a dress styled as a large Confederate battle flag.

The lawsuit filed Monday in U.S. District Court claims the Greenup County district and administrators violated Jacqueline Duty's First Amendment right to free speech and her right to celebrate her heritage at predominantly white Russell High School's prom May 1. She also is suing for defamation, false imprisonment and assault.

"Her only dance for her senior prom was on the sidewalk to a song playing on the radio," said her lawyer, Earl-Ray Neal.

Get a load of the dress - if there's a blizzard on Christmas Eve, maybe Santa will ask her to wear it and guide his sleigh.

Image Hosted by ImageShack.us

The Passion of Bill O'Reilly

Was Bejus HimSelf persecuted as much as Bill O'Reilly?

(Via Atrios)


Tuesday, December 21, 2004

As if South Carolina doesn't have enough home-grown nuts

Via Digby, read about these radical fundamentalist Constitution-hating Christians who want to invade South Carolina and turn it into a theofascist state.

Maybe they'd find some kindred spirits in the upstate (home of Bob Jones) but here on the coast we like our bourbon, our titty bars, our bingo parlors, gambling boats and lottery. I don't understand why those Christian Exodus folks don't have themselves a real exodus and move to someplace more amenable to their desire for a society governed by far-right religious clerics - Saudi Arabia, say. Or if Saudi Arabia's not strict enough, Alabama.

Oddly, two of the three founders of Christian Exodus live in Texas and California respectively (the bio for the third mullah does not list his residence). Why aren't THEY moving to South Carolina? (not that I'm complaining). Maybe they're really dissolute liberals, hoping to fob off their home state's wingnuts onto some other unfortunate state.

Shorter Digby commenters: "*&$#@% South Carolina!" Sometimes I forget how self-righteously asshole-ish liberals can be, and then I go read the comments on Atrios or somewhere and am reminded afresh. I'd like to join an exodus to some country where people don't give a rip about politics, and are good-looking and tan and not in a continual state of pissed-offness. Sweden, perhaps . . .


Monday, December 20, 2004

Shorter President Bush *

"The details of my social security plan are for me to know and you to find out!"

At his press conference today, President Doofus vowed that he would not "negotiate with [him]self" on social security. Now, I've heard people say "I won't bid against myself" in some contexts (for example, you make an offer of X dollars to buy a house, the seller rejects your offer without countering, the real estate agent suggests you make another offer, you huffily retort that you will not bid against yourself). But I've never heard anyone say that he wouldn't negotiate with himself. I don't even know what that means. I don't think Mr. Bush does either, as he kept saying it in response to reporters' attempts to get him simply to explain his plan.

Here Mr. Bush refuses to be fooled by a wily reporter's trick question:

QUESTION: Mr. President, on that point, there is already a lot of opposition to the idea of personal accounts, some of it fairly entrenched among the Democrats. I wonder what your strategy is to try to convince them to your view.
And specifically, they say that personal accounts would destroy Social Security. You argue they would help save the system. Can you explain how?

BUSH: I will try to explain how without negotiating with myself. It's a very tricky way to get me to play my cards. I understand that.

By all means, don't play your cards, Mr. Bush. Hold them close to your vest. Don't let these pesky reporters trick you into disclosing your plans to the peons who elected you.

On another topic: Mr. Bush downgraded Rummy's performance evaluation from "fabulous" to "very fine."

*"Shorter" concept stolen from Elton at busybusybuy

Update: Here's busybusybusy's version

I'm back

I was at Edisto Beach all weekend. Did I miss anything?


Thursday, December 16, 2004

Christmas without the Baby Bejus is like Christmas without . . . ham

From a letter to the editor of The Sun News:

Have you noticed that Christ is being taken out of Christmas? The common greeting these days is "Happy Holidays!" I have nothing against Santa, Rudolph or Frosty the Snowman, but without Jesus Christ, it would be like having Christmas dinner with no turkey or ham.


Wednesday, December 15, 2004

First they kill Bejus, now this

You're either for Christmas or you're against it. And if you're against it, why don't you just MOVE TO ISRAEL.

More at Pandagon.

President Dumb-Ass

From Josh Marshall:

George W. Bush, international economist: "There's a trade deficit. That's easy to resolve: People can buy more United States products if they're worried about the trade deficit."


Tuesday, December 14, 2004

Desperately seeking

A digital image of the hippie teacher from Beavis and Butthead. You know, the one who sang Fly, Lesbian Seagull. I've Googled diligently and can't find a decent pic.

I need it for my own nefarious purposes. A free Rogue Planet . . . cup of water will go to the reader who can locate one for me.

Lindsey Graham campaigns before captive audience

of graduates.

Graham, R-S.C., spoke to more than 2,500 graduates at the winter commencement ceremony for USC's eight campuses, calling them the next great generation.

"We're going to win the war, ladies and gentlemen, and the reason we're going to win the war is because of our nation's young," Graham said.

Graham said the average age for military in the Persian Gulf region is 20 for sailors, 22 for special forces members and 28 for fighter pilots.

I bet this guy would really skew the numbers . . .

Senator Graham also did a little politicking on the Social Security crisis, or "crisis," as more informed commenters call it:

Graham also pledged to fight for Social Security reform before the system runs out of money in 2042.

"Just do the math. That's about the time you'll need it, isn't it?" Graham said with a chuckle.

No wonder Bob Somerby's correspondents are so confused.


Monday, December 13, 2004


For the Republicans, it's more important to talk about values than it is to have them.

Koufax Awards

Nominations are now open for various categories of leftie blogs.

I nominated Acidman for each category.


Friday, December 10, 2004

No blogging this weekend

I'll be in Charleston, home of Geo3ge. Y'all behave.

They should pay US reparations!

South Carolina's own Maurice doesn't have a monopoly on pushing the slaves-really-had-it-good version of history: Atrios posts about a Christian school in Cary, North Carolina which has its students read a booklet that teaches that slavery was really pretty cushy for the slaves. An excerpt, courtesy of (the non-neutral) Atrios:

* "Nearly every slave in the South enjoyed a higher standard of living than the poor whites of the South -- and had a much easier existence." (page 30)

Maybe Acidman can sue for reparations, to be paid by the descendants of those greedy, slacker slaves . . .


Thursday, December 09, 2004

CBS exposes Atrios

Famous blogger Atrios' "neutrality" is a sham. A pose. A pretense.

Naturally Atrios is all up in arms now that his veil of feigned objectivity has been stripped away. Well, Mr. Atrios, looks like the "media whores" have turned the tables on YOU.

I wrote David Paul Kuhn, the author of the CBS article, to express my thanks and slip in a little blogwhoring at the same time. Here is what I wrote him:

Dear Mr. Kuhn:

Thank you for your brilliant investigative reporting on "Atrios" and his hidden bias. I, like countless others, was drawn to his blog by his pose of neutrality and objectivity. Little did I know that he was in the employ of a shadowy group and pushing an anti-Bush agenda "all the while," as you put it in the first (of several) published versions of your article.

You will probably be criticized by some just because you got a few basic, easily verifiable facts completely wrong. Ignore the naysayers. The important thing is that you have exposed the hidden bias of Atrios and his Internet blog.

Please consider doing a similar investigation of the blogger known as "kc." Her blog, "Rogue Planet," feigns neutrality but I suspect that she may actually harbor strong anti-Bush sentiments. I suspect as well that she is receiving funds from shadowy groups. Just look at her blog; observe the professional-looking, polished template and the sophisticated graphics. The FEC needs to investigate her and the source of her funding.

That's "Rogue Planet." Don't forget to put the URL in your article. "Rogue Planet." "Rogue Planet."

Oh, by the way, here's a tip: I suspect "The Medium Lobster" isn't really a lobster. On his Internet blog he pretends to hold lobsterarity but think about it: You can't operate a computer mouse with lobster claws. You might want to look into it.

Kind regards,


This seems kind of barbaric to me

Scott Peterson's mother is obliged to beg for her son's life.

On Wednesday, Peterson's frail-looking mother, Jackie Peterson, spent a tearful 40 minutes on the stand as the defense wound up its penalty phase presentation. She urged jurors to sentence her son to life and save the family further pain and begged jurors to see the good in her son.

"He's an exceptional young man and he's my son," Jackie Peterson said. "I know he's not perfect ... but he is genuinely a loving, caring, nurturing, kind, gentle person."

Yeah, "not perfect" is putting it mildly. But the poor woman.


Wednesday, December 08, 2004

You're not the judge of me!

Kieran Healy makes a good case for the Becker Posner blog's being a hoax.

Mr. Healy praises the cunning genius of the blog's author:

After the lead-in sentence, “Posner” is careful not to mention again the war being prosecuted in Iraq. This is a nice move, reminiscent of the best UseNet trolls. When angry bloggers complain that neither the cost-benefit thing nor the analogy to Hitler make any contact with present reality whatsoever, or suggest that the post sounds like it was written in the Autumn of 2002 — or maybe the Winter of 1990 — they’ll have unwittingly set themselves up for a fall: after all, “Posner” was only considering the justifiability of preventive war sub specie aeternitas, not the actual costs and benefits of any particular war the U.S. might or might not be engaged in at present.

Damn, and I fell for it like a ton of bricks with my ignoramus comment about Iraq on "Judge Posner's" blog. Well, fool me once, "Judge," shame on . . . shame on you. Fool me twice . . . won't get . . . won't get fooled again.

Mr. Healy thinks the blog's comments are further evidence of its spurious nature:

Elsewhere on the blog, the absurd suck-up comments from law students are a further indication that the reader is being gamed. Take this one from “Charles”, for instance:

Dear Justice Posner, I am a 2L at DePaul and I just wanted to say that I think all of your legal decisions are brilliant. I think that you and Dr. Thomas Sowell are the most insightful economic minds in the world today

That comment jumped out at me as well when I first read the "Posner" blog, causing me to shake with silent laughter, though being less perspicacious than Mr. Healy I failed to ascertain that the entire blog was a hoax.

The Becker-Posner blog's comments, some intentionally funny, some unintentionally so, continue to crack me up . A few of my faves:

"grave and gathering danger."
What, precisely, standard is that? Alliteration is not a standard. Do the words "grave and gathering" tell us anything? What does it mean for danger to "gather?" Is that when danger's underpants are wrinkled? - Rob

I am arguing that any dictator anywhere in the world can be justifiably killed or imprisoned by any democratic government at any time. - Jason Ligon

One may agree or disagree with any particular analysis of this sort, but the point is that different people have different predictions of what the results of a given preventative action will be, value different sorts of outcomes differently and consequently arrive at very different conclusions about the appropriate courses of action. In other words, this is a question with regard to which the abstract methodological discussion engaged in by Judge Posner is unnecessary and unproductive; as is often the case with economic approaches to geo-political problems, the guise of mathematical rigor disguises an all-too-obvious failure to address the truly complex and nuanced questions raised by the issue at hand. Certain kinds of limited thinkers get excited by this appearance of rigor, thinking that it introduces cool, calm rationality to a problem which has been mired in bluster and vituperations. In reality, however, it only begs all the interesting questions, leaving the difficult analysis for others to perform. Traditional Tradesman (OK, this one isn't "funny" but I liked it. . . .)

Hello Mr. Posner, (Can I call you Dick?) I suspect you are interested enough to read these comments so I just wanted to give a little greeting from a IL at Indiana who is rather tired of reading your opinions in his casebook. We recently covered Indiana Harbor Belt R.R. v. American Cyanamid, and I wanted to ask you if any folks have moved from the polluted ghettos of the south side up into your subdivision like you so compassionately suggested. Perhaps you threw a party for them when they arrived, Bring Your Own Cake. - Corey

I think the "judge" if indeed it is his blog should require future commenters to preface their comments with "May it please the court."


Tuesday, December 07, 2004

Shorter Judge Posner

"2 plus 2 = bomb them back to the stone age."

Oh, OK, that's a TAD bit unfair. Go read for yourself as Judge Posner argues that a cost-benefits analysis may be used to to decide whether to launch a pre-emptive war (that's a grossly simplistic summary, but I'm too lazy to elaborate).

Lots of people in Judge Posner's comments section, and elsewhere, were outraged by the judge's dry, bloodless use of economic theory to evaluate war, but personally, I think it would be a good idea to do some kind of cost-benefit analysis before invading another country. Too bad nobody in the Bush administration did one. Bush just said "Fuck Saddam, we're taking him out" and then the administration commenced its marketing campaign. The administration sure devoted a lot of time and energy to selling the war. If only it had taken a little time to actually evaluate the potential costs. Instead of banking on the throwing of roses and the blossoming of democracy and the free-flowing oil paying for everything.

For more intelligent commentary on Judge Posner and law and economics than you will ever find here, go read Publius's excellent critique . And do not omit to read the excellent Medium Lobster's post applying Judge Posner's methodology to the question whether we should take pre-emptive action against other entities.

By the way the comments to Judge Posner's first post were a hoot, if you when you read them you imagine the contrast to the deferential treatment to which the judge is probably accustomed. They, the comments, ranged from fawning (OK, he's probably used to that) to impertinent to rude to semi-literate. My own comment was knee-jerk snarky and I immediately wanted to take it back and tone it down, but alas, Haloscan is a harsh mistress.

There goes the blogosphere

Bejus, it seems like just any random idiots with a computer can start up a blog these days.

Back when I launched this whole "blogging" phenomenon, back in February 2004, the blogosphere was much more exclusive.


Sunday, December 05, 2004

Steven Brill expresses remorse for inflicting Nancy Grace upon America

As well he should.

Mr. Brill did not seem thrilled about the new direction Court TV has taken since Time Warner bought out his stake in the network in 1997. In his day, anchors were forbidden to express their views or take a position on trials they were covering. And as Court TV has changed, he said, so has Ms. Grace.

"I regret what her persona on television has become because I think it just contributes to the overall scream culture that is too often cable television," he said. "I feel like I owe a debt to society for putting her on television."

He also owes a debt to ME, the sumbitch. After I was bombarded with form letters from "Steven Brill" urging, nay, begging me to renew my Content magazine subscription, I finally sent them a check. The magazine immediately tanked. Mr. Brill knew it was coming. So he owes me $25.00, damn it.

Just don't eat the falafel, if you know what I mean

Tommy Thompson is worried that terrorists will contaminate food we import from the Middle East. He didn't express any specific concern about terrorists making our domestic food supply less safe, probably because the executive branch already has that covered.

Way to go, South Carolina

I am mortified for my state:

COLUMBIA - A high-ranking member of the Sons of Confederate Veterans has been elected to the state Education Board, sparking protests from civil rights groups.
"This should send chills down the spine of all South Carolinians," said Mark Potok, director of the Southern Poverty Law Center's Intelligence Project, which tracks racist groups.

Ron Wilson, a former commander of the Sons of Confederate Veterans, ran unsuccessfully for state Senate this year but was selected to the education panel by a 4-3 vote of state legislators from Anderson County's delegation to replace John Hostetler, a former high-school principal who is retiring.

He once sold textbooks to parents who home-school their children, including "Barbarians Inside the Gates," which touted a discredited theory that Jews are working toward world domination.

Potok's group decried that book as "a viciously anti-Semitic tome."
The new post puts Wilson in the role of approving textbooks, settling teacher grievances and working with the education superintendent's office on policy.

Update: Atrios has picked up on this story, and has more info on the odious views of Mr. Wilson.


Saturday, December 04, 2004

Brave Sir Bernie ran away
He bravely ran away

President Bush has rewarded Bernard Kerik for his grueling, three-month long service in Iraq by nominating him for the post of Homeland Security Director.

Mr. Kerik's first act will be to revise the terror alert chart thusly:


(Chart courtesy the handsome and talented MD. Newsday link via Roger Ailes. And more about Mr. Kerik here.)


This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?