Instapun*** Archive Listing

Archive Listing
June 12, 2009 - June 5, 2009

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

(Un)Expected Developments
The Clintons met earlier today with the superdelegates.

XOFF NEWS. Hillary Clinton campaign operatives are denying there's any truth to the stories that any kind of vote-fixing or election fraud was involved in the odd circumstances surrounding the Super Tuesday primary in Ms. Clinton's home state:

ELECTION IRREGULARITIES: Reported "Zero" Count or Undercount of Obama Votes in Some NY Precincts Raises Questions

The Democratic party is again facing questions about its handling of the primary process in some precincts in New York City, where initial "unofficial" tallies reported zero votes for Sen. Barack Obama, of Illinois, rival of local junior senator Hillary Rodham Clinton for the party's presidential nomination. The undercounts appear to represent severe distortions of the actual tally, and occurred in areas where Obama's support rivaled Clinton's.

The question has been raised by several party leaders as to how any candidate could be expected to have received zero votes and why the problem was not corrected sooner. Some have suggested the extreme error points to the unlikelihood of wrongdoing, while others allege some sort of conspiracy to steal enough votes to add one or two delegates to the Clinton tally.

Neither of the Clintons could be reached for comment. Reportedly, they were meeting with the 796 superdelegates to the Democratic Convention, who announced earlier this morning that they would all be casting their ballots for Senator Clinton in every round of floor voting at the convention. When they were asked what had suddenly decided them to commit their support so completely all at the same time, they all said they "could not recall" what had made up their minds.

In a separate and equally surprising development, binding pre-entry polls (a recently imposed party regulation) of Democrat voters in Ohio, Texas, and Pennsylvania revealed that Senator Clinton will win these key primary states unanimously. Poll responses also indicate that the voters in these states "have no recollection" of what factors influenced their decision.

Hillary wins. Unanimously. Of course.

Senator Barack Obama's campaign manager, who had recently spoken with Bill Clinton by phone, indicated that he "accepted the will of the voters," although he was, of course, "saddened" by the sudden end of his candidate's prospects for the nomination. He said he had "no memory at this time" of exactly what he had discussed with former President Clinton in their phone conversation. "I'm sure it was just the usual political chit-chat," he said.

DNC Chairman Howard Dean expressed his "great relief" that the tightly contested nomination race was now concluded."I'm absolutely certain that the party will unite behind our excellent candidate," he said. "It's time to bury the past -- and keep it buried as long as all the various statutes of limitations are in force." Actually he never said that last part, according to the DNC spokesgirl, who should know, because look at her.

Bill's New Intern
DNC Spokesgirl

So that's pretty much it for the campaign. Until it's time to destroy McCain in the fall, of course. We'll be back at you then.

Saturday, February 16, 2008

The Danger of Guns   -  Sometime ago, we suggested what Dr. Stenger should do at the time of the shooting at Virginia Tech University. Because it was so poorly received and we were told it was in bad taste, we're not going to suggest this course of action in the current case of the shootings at Northern Illinois University -- although we probably should.

Well, now, the kids are getting concerned that maybe the adults are completely insane in their approach to campus security and they've started a little organization, Students for Concealed Carry on Campus. They boast a 12,000 member group with nationwide representation.

We would like to applaud and encourage them. Unfortunately you can't even get a permit to carry a concealed weapon in Illinois. Wonder why Steven Kazmierczak was carrying one -- and a shotgun? Good luck out there kids. You should probably join the group and take action to secure your own security. Evidently, all you're going to get from your government is a sign.

Friday, February 15, 2008

Indiana Jones and the Temple of
Incredibly Ancient Leading Men

Don't you just love the cameos by Bogart and Brando? And Greta
Garbo, Lon Chaney, Gloria Swanson, and Douglas Fairbanks, Sr?

TRAILER MAGIC. Wow. It's seems like a lifetime that we've been waiting for this sequel. Come to think of it, it has been a lifetime. But that only makes it all the sweeter. I mean, think of it, fellow old guys. This time, Harrison Ford gets to have a romance with Cate Blanchett, who is only maybe 40 years younger than he is. That's realistic, isn't it? I can't tell you how many times I've had to protect my honor with my cane against lovelorn women who could be my great granddaughter. That's why I have to use so much liniment.

Speaking of liniment, though, this may be the most painful movie to watch in all cinematic history. Can you even imagine the agonies Ford must have experienced in all those shots where he was trotting along waiting for the stunt double to leap in and do the fight/fall/jump/stand-up-quickly scene? From my standpointsitpoint, it's going to be a lot like watching an episode of CSI: maybe half the runtime devoted to averting my eyes from all the gruesome stretching, twisting, and climbing stairs.

But Karen Allen is still looking lovely, don't you think? And thank God for Shia Laboeuf. If he weren't there to star in every single movie that's been made since the Fall of 2006, who knows what we'd all do? Probably watch Jimmy Stewart on Turner Movie Classics. Come to think of it... maybe I'll go do that now.

What were we talking about?............... Oh. What?....... Wow. It seems like a lifetime that we've been waiting for...

Huh? Is it really time for my jello? Cool.

2K9: Our Next President

He's got my vote!

IT'S OBAMA, PROBABLY. This time next year, any criticism of the President, or any criticism that could be construed to be critical of the President, will run a very real risk of being tarred w/ the racism brush. Listen for the sound of the blogosphere's great collective hesitation.

Like most of the country, I first saw our next President in 2004. I was a newly-former quasi-anarchist and adbusters reader, and was just starting to (try to) think clearly about politics and its effect on everything else. Hating the living hell out of Coke and President Bush for fun and self-satisfaction was still appealing, but I was just beginning to suspect it'd be better to aim higher.

With a head full of The Hidden Persuaders and its thoughts on the de-evolution of elections into mascot competitions (voting for the man, not his platform), I meet Barack Obama interviewed in a news segment covering the 2004 DNC, back when he was a lowly state senator. I don't remember a word he said, but his candorous mien raised my eyebrows. He sure seemed like he was being honest. I thought to myself, "too bad the Democrats can't run this guy for the highest office. He'd be mascot par exellence. But he's too young and inexperienced for them to consider".

But nothing, turns out. They had the same idea, and decided to go for it. Looks like their gamble is going to pay off.

Maybe it was a controversial assertion once, but this mascotism is an accepted way of the world now. Each of the two viable parties have a competing vision for America. Most of us cross our fingers and hope the party we like better (or hate less) picks an ambassador who can charm and seduce enough of those clueless voters who aren't already on our side to get himself elected and start making our preferred vision a reality. This story on 21-year-old Democratic super delegate Jason Rae illustrates the principle in hardball political terms: Rae is only a junior in college, but his determination to secure the presidency for Democrats enables him to push back against phone calls from Bill Clinton and John Kerry, as well as a personal meeting with Chelsea Clinton. Where others might be starstruck, he is adamantine -- not about policy, but about voter appeal. "'Both have good positions," he concedes, "but it's about who can win." Stuff that in your stoge and smoke it, President Clinton sir.

Who could do this? And at such a tender age? Could Bush Derangement Syndrome be so potent as to embolden thus? The attitude of political enfants terribles like Rae might well be an as-yet uncategorized inverse of Godwin's Law:

"As an online discussion grows longer, the probability of a comparison involving Nazis or Hitler approaches one."

The inverse? Comparisons to Nazis or Hitler extend and elevate the importance of participants in a discussion. It's so ennobling to be the antagonist of a completely contemptible villain. That's why it's become fashionable to implicitly accuse Bush of being both too stupid to be President and a criminal mastermind in the same breath, because both those slanders are easy to to levy against rich white guys, and the ultimate white guy villain is obviously guilty of every possible charge. Remember RatherGate (for a laugh, read the last sentence)? Remember all the "he's still a hypocrite... or something" grumbling after reasonable doubt of forgery was put to bed? Contradictions cease to exist when absolute self-righteous certainty is at the wheel. Making Bush out to be a latter-day Hitler -- a figure so overwhelmingly, obviously evil that one is excused from the usual qualifiers of objective, "look at it from his perspective" fairness -- is easy. Encouraged, certainly. It puts on the pretense of living in a dangerous time, but it's a fakey, exciting scare. Like a horror movie, with about as much genuine threat. (Michael Moore slanders the crap out of Bush without so much as an angry letter from the government[and if he has received such a letter, my hyperbolic point still stands, and you know it]). The real danger in our socio-political (kiss my ass, that's the word for it) climate is to audibly suspect that a non-white culture not only might be the bad guys, but so dangerously vile that leaving them alone is both impossible and suicidal.

No no no no no la la la la la! Too awful to contemplate. Doesn't the mere thinking of such a thought make us the bad guy, even if (hypothetically) we don't think we are? Of course. Actually believing another culture to be inferior is bad. Hitler bad.

So that can't be it. The obstacle to our total joy and happiness can't possibly be the diverse cultures (good, good, good) outside our national borders, but only the patriarchal oppressors (old white guys) all those other cultures hate for probably very excellent reasons. Let's keep a clear head here and focus on getting rid of Bush. Bush no good.

Both Hillary's and Obama's disapproval for all the bad things Bush has done is well established, which makes them both "good" candidates -- or at least "good enough" for the huge sigh of relief the left and their dupes have been aching to breathe these 8 long years. Now the only remaining question is which iconic savior Bovine America will applaud, adore, and excuse the most. The non-white African-American messiah? Or the non-male Woman-American mommy? God, it's so hard to choose. But can you believe there're people out there who are too damn dumb to recognize the pure, aggressive eeeevil of Bush? They must be eeeevil too, or so fanatically, religiously ignorant they can't tell right from wrong. Not like us. We need someone like us. But better. Someone who could never ever, not even remotely, be confused with the eeeevil of Bush.

That's why Hillary won't get the nomination. Even with the aid of the mental fire blankets of vicarious feminist fantasy and hysterical anti-sexism, she seems maybe kind of mean, doesn't she? We've been mean to the world this entire century. Just mean. Let's, you know, give peace a chance. Other than catching bin Laden (which should be a lot easier than waging a whole war, right?), it's time we gave the world a firm handshake, a big smile, and a fond farewell. That's the will of, if not "the people", then quite a few of them. We appreciate Hillary
shattering the glass ceiling to break into the boys' club and all, but she's not the face we want to put forward.

But her disadvantages as a presidential candidate are strengths for, like , a reverse-spoiler, aren't they?

Bad cop, blank cop

Sorry, drifted off for a second thinking about Obama. Isn't he exactly how you imagined your fantasy honest politician to come across? Lots of eye contact; lots of clear, assertive timbre, with just the tiniest hint of steeling himself against the impossible odds of an uncorrupted man coming to Washington; handsome, but not pretty? And, you know, smart? Finally, we won't have to be embarrased in front of the other countries! Won't it be great, to have a virile, yet non-evil man in charge for a change?

Obama's their horse, dear readers. Uh-oh. Does calling him a horse seem maybe racist to you? Like if you squint? Better rephrase, to be safe.

Obama's their MAN (that oughta be slander-proof [for me]). He's the panacea all the snobs accused Reagan of being, way back when. The Secretariat* of our day. Oh damn, the horse thing. Sorry. I promise I wasn't secretly insulting him under cover of innocent analogy.

*I can't find the Gary Trudeau quote, so I'll paraphrase from memory: "After the national trauma of Nixon and Watergate, Secretariat's Triple Crown win captivated America. One woman went as far as to say the horse 'restored her faith in humanity'. I like to think Reagan was the Secretariat of the '80s."

What about McCain, you ask? What about him. He had the populist appeal to have clobbered Gore back in 2000 if your idiot party had nominated him (and criticism of his war on terror would have been muted, AND the Democrats wouldn't have taken up the rhetoric of the vociferous left to get back in power, but of course that's all academic now). He isn't half as indefinably inspiring as Obama, and that's all anyone has the stomach to care about anymore. Hell, even you don't want him. I can't wait to read all the "I held my nose and voted for McCain" blogs of wailing and lamentation on November 5.

Don't pin your hopes on simple scandal bringing him down, either. The country's too used to liking him now. He could cop to anything (barring murder or child abuse, which he probably hasn't done, gang) with a face of brave honesty and get away with it.

And you haven't thought to ask "what about assassination", have you? Depends who pulls the trigger. If it's definitely some white power extremist, we(the nation, not just conservatives)'re in real danger of a second Clinton presidency. If it's someone the left claims was a right-wing nut, but there's room for doubt, McCain wins. If it's an Islamist gun or knifeman, as I predict it will be if it happens, McCain takes the oath wearing a symbolic pair of barb-wired boxing gloves. If the Democratic nomination goes to Obama's vice president, and that somehow isn't Hillary, than I have no idea. Probably McCain, unless the former VP candidate has Obama-level charisma and dreaminess, and odds are he won't. If he isn't Hillary.

In fact, Hillary might try to off him in a fatal "accident" (don't give me that look. You know she's thinking about it), but even that won't be enough to overcome the gut "...nuh-uh" most of the country is going to feel when they see her name on the ballot.

So, barring Sirhan Sirhan II, Barack Obama is our next President. We can pimp (whoops!) the conservative option as hard as we want, and should. I don't expect it to work, not least because our heart isn't in it. Lick your wounds with a funny t-shirt, and start thinking hard about how we're going to defend ourselves against the government on one front, and without the government on the other front, come 2K9.

P.S. InstaPunk here. I warned him explicitly I would do this. Young punks do get the bit in their teeth. But assassination talk is offensive. And I really hate it when one of our own indulges himself in the same kind of nonsense we've seen this week from the mummy Brit twat Doris Lessing. America is way above assassinating Barack Obama. It's not 1963 anymore, no matter what all the cartoon dudes think. Time to grow up. Obama is just not that threatening. To anyone. He's a cipher. Nobody conspires to kill empty suits. He has no real beliefs. He's Jimmy Carter, with better delivery. My apologies, Brizoni, but it's not like I didn't tell you what would happen. This is bad taste, it's uncalled for, and worse than that, it's utter nonsense. Enjoy the rest of the post, everyone.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Man Proven JFK's Secret Son
Seeks Dem Prez Nod, Wins

This photo owned by the Globe and Mail. Apparently.

XOFF NEWS. It all started with a sensational news report:

A MAN has sensationally claimed he is the love child of assassinated US President John F Kennedy.

Mr Worthington, an American living in Canada, was born a year before JFK was gunned down in Dallas 1963.

He came forward after a US newspaper claimed JFK had a possible love child living in Canada.

He said he wanted “to do the right thing”.

Subsequently, volunteers at a crime lab in Las Vegas tested his DNA via cellphone and confirmed within 30 seconds that Worthington is indeed the son of John Fitzgerald Kennedy.

DNC Chair Howard Dean immediately polled his party's 796 "Super" delegates, who unanimously switched their support from Clinton and Obama to Worthington. The 2,171 "Lowlife" delegates, who are technically committed to voting for candidates who won their states' primaries, also switched their votes to the new Kennedy heir.

"Hang the rules," said one typical delegate, a Caucuser from Iowa. "This is the Party of Change. Everybody's been promising us change, and now we have it."

Then came the turning point in the race. All of Hollywood's top box office stars and movie producers endorsed Worthington on the Oprah Winfrey show, and The New York Times declared him the winner of the Democratic nomination.

Dean announced his satisfaction that the contentious race for his party's nomination was now settled, and preparations for a happy convention, a successful general election campaign, and a triumphant coronationinauguration could begin.

Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton immediately called press conferences to protest Worthington's belated entry into the race, but no one came and no one cares what they said.

In his first brief remarks upon returning to the United States, Worthington asserted that he had always opposed the Bush tax cuts for the wealthy, the invasion of Iraq, the Patriot Act, Guantanamo, Dick Cheney, NAFTA, Christianity, capitalism, immigration laws, petroleum, carbon dioxide, red meat, smoking, SUVs, unflattering baby bumps, and breast reduction surgery.

He also said that the message of his campaign would represent a "dramatically new approach" in American politics -- a clarion call for "Change and Bipartisan Unity against the Evil Republicans."

Presumptive Republican nominee John McCain said he looked forward to "a spirited debate on the issues with the new jerk."

Sticking up for [gasp] Jane Fonda

HER AGAIN. I don't have to prove that I have no use for Jane Fonda. But today she's being tarred unreasonably. Drudge has run one of his RED headlines to highlight her latest crime:

La Malkin pounced on the infraction in her first post of the day, expressing her profound indignation, as well as the banal observation that "the woman has no class." Yet she found it within her journalistic soul to reproduce the offending clip and to caption her teaser for the post as follows:

That's better is it, than what Fonda did? I don't think so. "Ew, I could never bring myself to utter this disgusting word myself, but I can show you other people saying it, and I can play allusive word games with it, but rest assured it will never pass my lips." The truth is, there are only two dirty words left in the English language. The runt-rhyme is one of them. Malkin is equally obsessed with the other one (which she can, somehow, force herself at least to type):

Michelle's not happy about this, either. At all.

It used to be that words were dirty because they were too anatomical, too pungently evocative of sheer physicalness to be permissible in mixed company. The offending source was always Celtic or Anglo-Saxon (Go figure.) Latin words were almost always acceptable -- feces, urine, anus, penis, glans, testicles, mammaries, vagina, vulva, coitus, orgasm. Because they're not especially successful words; they don't instantly summon a vivid, sensual (i.e., lurid and smelly) experience of the thing so named. The Anglo-Saxon words are all works of verbal genius, astonishingly direct highways to the most fully developed regions of sense memory: shit, piss, asshole, cock, prick, balls, tits, cunt, pussy, fucking, cum.

Well, the Romans faded away for some reason. The Celt/Anglo-Saxon peoples flourished and came to dominate the world. Because their dirty words were dirtier than everyone else's? No one can say. But their dirty words were so powerful that their own poets and playwrights and novelists actually connived in the process of making them dirty in the first place. (Distinctly not the case with the Romans, for example. See Catullus, the Keats of Rome.) The words were too powerful. Using them in print or on stage heightened their power and could cost the author the audience attention he craved. So the Latin words were resurrected for all mundane informational applications ("The mother delivers the infant through her vagina," not "Mommy squeezes the baby out of her cunt"), and the writers made up a brand new art of innuendo, double-entendre, and puns to keep their audiences under control. Today it's popular to blame Christians for such word games, and Christians seem happy to accept the credit, but squeamishness about truly effective words long predates Christianity. Politicians have hated every one-syllable word meaning 'lie' as long as governments have existed. 'Prevarication' is a great, mild-sounding Latin word, isn't it?

But we live in liberated secular times now. The censoring of dirty words has become as vestigial as the human appendix. Most of them can be encountered on American sitcoms in primetime, and all but two are routinely said on basic cable and BBC sitcoms: shit, piss, asshole, cock, prick, balls, tits, [nope], pussy, [nope], cum.

But I previously said there are only two dirty words, including the infamous, unspeakable, unholy N-Word, and I've listed two plain old dirty words you'll never hear unless you have a premium cable channel -- or a pre-teen son or daughter.

Which brings us to the most ridiculous phenomenon of our whole media-saturated age: the phony bleep. With the possible exception of 'shit', 'fuck' (and its variants) is the most widely used word on the whole list. The audio editors have acquired the skill of neurosurgeons in cutting out all sound between the first half of the 'f' and the last half of the 'k.' (Soupy Sales should have been so lucky.) Like there's anyone over the age of three who doesn't possess enough persistence of memory to hear the word that's being (un)spoken. We seem to be content with the pretense that we don't hear what every single damn one of us does hear in our mind's ear, as long as the token phony bleep gives us cover. Exactly the same principle is at work with Michelle Malkin's "rhymes with runt." All phony bleeps come with a built-in leer that arises from the shared perception that a dirty word has been amplified by its fraudulent subtraction. We LOVE it, lechers and prudes alike. Censorship as actual titillation. Will Malkin be hotter tonight, on this St. Valentine's Day, because she rhymed runt with [you know]? Sure she will. Words wouldn't be dirty if they didn't have an effect.

Here's a good example of the whole phony bleep phenomenon. Note two things (skip ahead to four minutes into the clip): Harvard alum Matt Damon's easy use of the word 'fuck' with his whole immediate family and children sitting in the front row, and his schizophrenic feelings about the word 'cunt.' Why does he love it AND hate it? Because it's the last dirty word. (Except for that other one.}

Observe how the largely female audience just loves his uses of these words. They laugh, they giggle, they smile. It's HOT.

The sad truth is, we've destroyed all the good dirty words. When anyone can use them anytime, they gradually lose their force. That's part of the meaning of Matt Damon's description of 'fuck' as a mere conjunction like 'and' and 'because' and 'but.' He said the word a whole bunch of times in his interview, but he never got the reaction he did when he said 'cunt.' The women approved and accepted the former, but they loved the 'latter.' They knew exactly what he meant.

Here's the thing. Women don't "hate" the word 'cunt' any more than black people "hate" the word 'nigger.' Apart from real articulate speech, these are the last two words of power in our language. They're both words used by people who inflict their power on others by posing as victims. They're both words that are used proudly by the supposed victims with each other to heighten the potency of their grievances: Feminists 'celebrate' the supposedly hateful C-Word in events like Penn State's 'Cuntfest,' while blacks use 'nigger' as an ethnic privilege to demonstrate their politically correct advantage over white people in the culture wars. In short, women love the word 'cunt,' depending on who says it and under what circumstances. And black people love the word 'nigger' the same way.

The only thing that makes these words dirty anymore is that there's a caste distinction with respect to who can use them.

But that's not dirt. That's politics.

I know it's taken a long time to get here. But I really liked what Jane Fonda said. She didn't cringe or make a face when she said 'cunt.' She didn't pretend the word is one her lily ears have never heard. I think I heard her say, implicitly, that scrawling a bad word on the wall of a theater or on a page (or even its rhyme) is basically a juvenile waste of time and hardly art. (Rappers take note.) What better way to communicate her objection to performing in a play called the Vagina Monologues, for God's sake? She said a word we all know and made it clear she's not hostage to the word, afraid of it, or particularly smitten by it. She sounded [gasp], for the first time in my experience of her, like a grown-up woman.

Malkin take note too. Yes, a word can be a hurtful brick. But a brick is a weapon only by accident. Mostly, it's a building material. A cunt isn't a disgusting thing. It's probably the single coolest thing God ever created.

UPDATE. Thanks to Glenn Reynolds for the link. Also, InstaPunk has a new essay up at the American Conservative Party website under the odd name RobertFLaird. He doesn't seem to like the word 'conservative' anymore. What a punk.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008


DIES IRAE. So Brizoni had to make his tasteless joke about last week's tornadoes being caused by all the dimwits who voted for the false prophet Huckabee. Whereupon our whole server gets taken down by the Wrath of the Almighty, and the world is plunged into seven days and nights of darkness without the light of InstaPunk to show the way.

Well, actually, the cause of the downtime is more mundane than that. The socket driver spun out of control on one of those tricky microprocessor chicanes, resulting in a spectacular end-over-end crash of the IP interface. Or something like that. Something technical at any rate. Hopefully, the pit crew has now reassembled enough of the pieces so our grand journey together can continue. Be advised that some links and content may still be missing for a while, however.

We'll be doing our best to catch up. We'll backfill some of the missing days with posts that were written but couldn't be uploaded. We'll also be adding some belated commentary on a variety of nonsense that happened while we were offline. And we'll resume committing our usual crimes and misdemeanors in this space.

So check back frequently, and keep scrolling. Sorry for the lapse in communications.

Another Shoe Drops.

IS THERE AN ECHO IN HERE? You've got to read the actual words, as reported in the World Tribune:

Bin Laden may be dead, but living on through old sound bites

U.S. intelligence agencies are beginning to suspect that Al Qaida leader Osama Bin Laden is dead after all, despite a recent audio tape exhorting Al Qaida terrorists in Iraq.

The Al Qaida leader who was the main force behind the September 11, 2001 attacks on New York and Washington, was last heard on an audio tape released Dec. 30. The tape mentioned Iraqis who are opposing Al Qaida, but there has been no specific time referenced from his last two messages. An earlier message in October also exhorted Al Qaida to fight in Iraq.

Questions about Bin Laden are being raised by intelligence officials who say that without a specific time mark with a photo of Bin Laden, his presence cannot be confirmed and the most recent statements could have been put together from older audio.

Al Qaida operates a very sophisticated propaganda operation that includes the use of audio and videotape messages to rally followers and to recruit new jihadists.

The new analysis of Bin Laden follows the death of No. 3 Al Qaida leader Abu Laith Al Libi, who was killed last week in a CIA-led operation in Pakistan that involved an armed unmanned aerial vehicle attack. [emphases added]

Intelligence. Officials. Beginning to suspect. Intelligence?

It's not as if this possibility hasn't been raised and chewed over at some length by the blogosphere for quite a while now. We expressed our own strong suspicions almost five months ago, including what little information we could find about the (un)reliability of voiceprint technology. As Rand Simberg points out, there's been reason for suspicion much longer than that:

Yes, and that has been true since Tora Bora. Haven't these people ever wondered, or speculated why bin Laden, who was second only to Senator Schumer when it came to being a camera hog, all of a sudden switched from video to audio about six years ago?

Simberg goes on to reiterate a question I asked here months ago: Why the duplicity? Here's my version of the question:

It can't be just that past rumors of bin Laden's death have been proven to be untrue and they're afraid of still another PR hit. Mostly, the rumors haven't been proven untrue. Not in public anyway. But even if this is their fear, it makes no sense to declare that he is definitely alive based on the evidence of an ambiguous videotape when it would be equally free of consequence to say, "We just don't know."

There's the mystery. The lamebrain Democrat default position in the War on Terror is that we should abandon every overseas activity but hunting down bin Laden. Keeping bin Laden more alive than dead therefore doesn't seem to help the administration any. Does it serve the anti-Bush crowd at the CIA? Does it serve the military? Does it serve anyone?

The answer is, it has to be serving someone or something. Probably elements of the intelligence bureaucracy, since they are the ones who provide the anonymous spokespeople to declare that bin Laden is alive after each lame tape release. Who knows what budget or private political agenda drives their disinformation strategies? Alternatively, the military bureaucracy or the Bush administration might have calculated that news of bin Laden's death would give the pusillanimous Democrats a perfect excuse for declaring final victory in the War on Terror and pulling the plug on all funding for operations in Afghanistan and Iraq. The latter doesn't seem likely, since there is no time in the last few years when the Bush administration's approval ratings wouldn't have benefited from news of bin Laden's death, but I'm putting it on the table anyway because I no longer care who's behind the deception.

What matters is that we are now in the thick of a campaign for the presidency of the United States, and no one on either side is interested in discussing future policy with regard to the War on Terror. Everyone is perfectly happy to live in the past and address the future only as a simplistic platitude. McCain, for example, takes credit for his (mostly) strong support of the Surge, which is in the past, and he is conspicuously silent about what U.S. foreign policy should be with regard to Islamofascism after Iraq is secure. One could infer that he wants American troops to win whatever battles they are presently engaged in but only because they are presently engaged. It might well be that he is as dovish in the larger war against the Wahabbis who want to kill and subjugate us as Obama is. The persistence of the phantom target called bin Laden makes it harder to see that he has articulated no next steps after Iraq and Afghanistan.

The Democrats, of course, are pleased as punch to address the Iraq War as an isolated, contextless blunder whose only solution is time travel into the past -- via the 9/10/01 utopia of another Dem presidency. Their only policy position with regard to the War on Terror concerns the solitary figure of bin Laden himself, whose death -- or (preferably?) capture and media-saturated trial in a U.S. courtroom with full due process and the armor of his own hand-picked Dream Team of lawyers -- would presumably write finis to any U.S. concern about global Islamic ambitions. After the trial, they could resume the sacred liberal art of talking everybody into the same paralyzed stupor they perpetually inhabit themselves.

But what if Osama bin Laden is really dead? What if the U.S. mass media even seriously raised the possibility that he might very well be dead and forced the public and the political establishment to confront the real implications of that possibility? Wouldn't that suddenly give explosive force to the question, What next? What should we do if the cartoon villain who has so hypnotized our attention were erased from the stage for good? Wouldn't we all have to think about that? And wouldn't we be demanding some real thinking from John McCain, Hillary Clinton, and Barack Obama? Instead of all their empty rhetoric about the past?

But obviously I'm a fool. This five or six paragraph story, whose implications could wipe out every word ever said by a Democrat about their strategy in the War on Terror, is only a footnote, a curiosity, and a distraction from the long march to the great Change we all so desperately want.

Forgive me.

A Family Affair

Ch. Gayle Ward's Tiger Woods

THE DOG THING. This week dog people are all beagle-mad, because the little fella shown below won the Westminster Dog Show. For example, Dave over at Ace of Spades has done two entries about Uno (second one here), because he has a beagle himself, and who could blame him for feeling a glow of reflected pride? No beagle has ever won Westminster before. Congrats to all the Snoopies out there and their families.


But there's also some news for all of you who have met the Scottish deerhound Psmith in past entries at InstaPunk. (Most recently, we announced his candidacy for President of the United States as an alternative to Rachel Lucas's somewhat authoritarian dog Sunny.) We love Psmith as much as any doting dog parents, but you could have knocked us over with a feather when we saw that the Best in Breed Scottish deerhound at Westminster this year was Psmith's own daddy, Tiger Woods.

That's all. [bask] [bask]

Psmith when he was little.

Sorry. What's a blog for if you can't indulge in a little pointless, unearned vanity from time to time?


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