It started as a simple act of reminiscence, watching the 1957
production of Silk Stockings
with Fred Astaire and Cyd Charisse. But sometimes a movie becomes
altogether new when the context of everyday life changes around it to a
sufficient degree. That is certainly the case with Silk Stockings. It's no longer a
period piece in the pure sense of the term but a glimpse at how far the
western world has fallen from its once splendid heights. It now seems
like a prescient satire, a time-travelling jeer delivered by our
grandparents to their charmless, humorless, and wholly unworthy heirs.
It shouldn't have the impact it does. It's a musical remake of Ninotchka, the comedy about a
beautiful but rigid Soviet apparatchik who is ultimately seduced by the
temptations of freedom and capitalism. The songs are far from being
Cole Porter's best compositions, and there is nothing in the script or
the production that takes itself seriously enough to arouse the
suspicion that it's some kind of message picture. And yet watching it
in the summer of 2008, one can't help recognizing that the passage of
years has effected a disturbing role reversal. The people who claim to
be the most enlightened and 'progressive' among us today are so much
more like Ninotchka than Fred Astaire's debonaire American entrepreneur
that one can almost feel their disapproving presence in the audience as
he wears away her doctrinaire facade.
She arrives in Paris from Moscow on a mission to return four wayward
sybarites to the stern communist paradise of Russia. Her real
antagonist is Fred Astaire, a movie producer who has seduced a Russian
composer into scoring a Hollywood musical and corrupted the three
Soviet bureaucrats sent to fetch him home. At this distance in time,
what's most striking about the Astaire character is his refusal
to take any of the communist political cant seriously. It just never
occurs to him that it's anything but a ridiculous impediment to his
plans. He knows that all he needs to win over the Russian men is
champagne, beautiful women and an elegant hotel suite. and he
accomplishes their conversion in a single musical number.
His certainty about Ninotchka is just as complete, but since she's a
woman he knows he needs to be more patient. Yet he never once doubts
that Paris, freedom, charm, and the correct set of baubles and
pleasures will strip away her stern veneer.On the night he first meets
Ninotchka, he escorts her onto the balcony of the hotel and urges her
to appreciate the lights of the Champs Elysee. She misunderstands
entirely and reminds him that it is Russians who invented electricity,
which is therefore no cause for wonder. When he makes his first
romantic moves, she informs him that sexual attraction is a perfectly
ordinary and unremarkable chemical reaction against which she has been,
apparently, politically inoculated.
In fact, she seems very like an earnest leftwing college student of
today, so encased in politically correct poses about sex, capitalism,
and "save the planet" orthoxies that there's no room left in her mind
for joy, spontaneity, exhilaration, or simple desire. In her view
politics is life, and all her
most settled convictions turn every color gray and every human urge
detestable. Ninotchka would have been a great member of Code Pink, NOW,
NARAL, Moveon.org, and Greenpeace. Remarkably, what's harder is to
summon a current day version of Fred Astaire's character. His easy and
ebullient confidence in the rightness of living it up because life
should be fun is the most outstanding anachronism in the movie.
It makes watching the movie an unsettling experience. How much is
fantasy, and how much is truth? The simplistic progress of the plot is
self-consciously a fantasy, but it also precludes in its whole ambiance
any notion that given the choice, people would choose something other
than a life of romance, excitement, dreams, and their accompanying
pleasures. In this way, it stands as a startlingly cheerful rebuke to
our contemporary masochistic obsession with guilt, self-punishment, the
criminalization of petty vices, and perverse yearning for a
Soviet-style leveling of the world economy.
Is it merely a pretty plot device that Ninotchka is liberated from her
ideological prison by a pair of silk stockings and a suave alpha male?
Or is there some elemental and inevitable fact of nature hiding inside
this simple but delicious souffle? And if the latter, isn't the souffle
itself a key part of the message?
I don't know. But get online to your Netflix account, and order up a
serving of Silk Stockings.
See if you don't find that it makes an extraordinary amount of sense
somehow. Even if it doesn't it's still a delightful entertainment. How
mny things can you say that about these days?
Gosh. Isn't she just so utterly down
home completely sexless? Eh?
STUFF. So we've taken some heat from the Great White North in
the past. For dissing Canada. But we're not going to be apologetic
anymore. Not only are they America Lite, they're also the land of Human
Rights Commissions and political correctness gone stone damn crazy.
There's really no need to be polite to them from now on. Neil
Henley, stop lecturing us about what it means to be
free. We're just better than you are.
Especially those of us who are of Scottish
descent. You see, being
Americans, we can claim anyone we want as Americans, including people
who have only made most of their money performing for Americans.
Canadians, on the other hand, are more or less stuck with promoting
Canadian-born mediocrities as the best they have to offer. Exhibit A: the Celine Dion cover
above of an AC/DC song. Why would a Canadian do that? There's
no point. And on top of it, why would you try to transform a pure,
rutting male rock and roll storm into a quasi-Lesbian anthem? Unless you were
all, always, nothing but a gang of wankers. You tell me.
Here's a video version of the real thing.
And here's a live version. In Toronto.
They're both better than the Canuck-Vegas version up top. Not even a
Canadian will have the nerve to dispute that.
Here's the truth. You came to the freedom game way late. And now you're
done. Fried. Finished. Caput. It's time for you to go crawling back
to the emasculated UK and beg for admission to the European Democratic
Peoples' Republic of Muhammed.
Friday, June 27, 2008
Today's GW Scare
just shivering with climatic terror?
IT ON. The Super Big Headline at Drudge this morning was about how
there won't be any ice at the North Pole this summer. I guess it's
supposed to beat down all the silly deniers of anthropogenic Global
Here's the lede in the Independent story Drudge linked
Exclusive: No ice at the
Polar scientists reveal dramatic
new evidence of climate change
By Steve Connor, Science Editor Friday, 27 June 2008
It seems unthinkable, but for the first time in human history, ice is
on course to disappear entirely from the North Pole this year.
The disappearance of the Arctic sea ice, making it possible to reach
the Pole sailing in a boat through open water, would be one of the most
dramatic Ė and worrying Ė examples of the impact of global warming on
the planet. Scientists say the ice at 90 degrees north may well have
melted away by the summer.
"From the viewpoint of science, the North Pole is just another point on
the globe, but symbolically it is hugely important. There is supposed
to be ice at the North Pole, not open water," said Mark Serreze of the
US National Snow and Ice Data Centre in Colorado.
Volcanic eruptions reshape
Arctic ocean floor: study
Wed Jun 25, 4:13 PM ET
Recent massive volcanoes have risen from the ocean floor deep under the
Arctic ice cap, spewing plumes of fragmented magma into the sea,
scientists who filmed the aftermath reported Wednesday.
The eruptions -- as big as the one that buried Pompei -- took place in
1999 along the Gakkel Ridge, an underwater mountain chain snaking 1,800
kilometres (1,100 miles) from the northern tip of Greenland to Siberia.
Scientists suspected even at the time that a simultaneous series of
earthquakes were linked to these volcanic spasms.
But when a team led of scientists led by Robert Sohn of the Woods Hole
Oceanographic Institution in Massachusetts finally got a first-ever
glimpse of the ocean floor 4,000 meters (13,000 feet) beneath the
Arctic pack ice, they were astonished.
What they saw was unmistakable evidence of explosive eruptions rather
than the gradual secretion of lava bubbling up from Earth's mantle onto
the ocean floor.
Previous research had concluded that this kind of so-called pyroclastic
eruption could not happen at such depths due to the crushing pressure
of the water.
"On land, explosive volcanic eruptions are nothing exceptional,
although they present a major threat," said Vera Schlindwein, a
geologist with Germany's Alfred Wegener Institute for Sea and Polar
Research, which took part in the study.
But the new findings, published in Nature, showed that "large-scale
pyroclastic activity is possible along even the deepest portions of the
global mid-ocean ridge volcanic system."
I don't suppose massive amounts of hot lava being spewed into the
Arctic Ocean could have anything to do with the melting of ice on the
surface. But if you're having a hard time getting past The Independent's shocking front
page, there is video of an
ocean floor volcanic event.
Just so you know underwater eruptions really do occur. Although it's
easy to predict that there will be some kind of dismissive explanation
after a few more skeptics start putting two and two together. Maybe
they aren't eruptions after all. Just the exhaust belchings of some
Hummer that wandered a little too far off-road. That kind of thing.
Anyway, let's be positive about all the skewed reporting. Maybe it'll
enable us to put together a junket to go water-skiing in the Arctic
Circle this August. Interested?
. We didn't respond immediately to the news of
death. In a way we were surprised that so many libs remembered him so
fondly. He made fun of things they can't stand to have made fun of,
including them. He wasn't a flower child; he was a curmudgeon and not
even a Baby Boomer but a member of the curiously unacknowledged
in-between generation, which we have written about at this site before.
On Mick Jagger's 63rd birthday InstaPunk posted an entry titled "The
Uncredited Generation," of which Jagger is a prominent member but
hardly the only one.
[R]ock music is only one aspect of the
influence of a generation that isn't even identified by any particular
name -- they're just the ones born too late to fight in World War II
and too early to be part of the Baby Boom. Yet they have led and
outshone the Boomers in multiple fields...
In demonstration of this we quoted from an essay about the "in-between"
generation, which offered up a representative list:
Other legendary figures of the 1960s
were of this generation ó Mohammed
Ali [sic], the last athlete to attain mythic stature, was born in 1942.
Ken Kesey, who attempted to smash open the doors of perception, and his
chronicler, Tom Wolfe, who helped revolutionize journalism, were both
born in the 1930s. So were Gloria Steinem, Warren Beatty, Dustin
Hoffman, Jack Nicholson and Clint Eastwood, who made cinematic history
in the '60s. Martin Luther King, born in 1929, and Albee, born in 1928,
were also virtually of this generation.
Then we returned to the subject of the Rolling Stones, acknowledging
how many Boomers in particular rate them lower than other megastar
in-betweeners like the Beatles and Bob Dylan. We demurred, singling out
a characteristic that is also intensely relevant to the career of
But the Stones, and
Jagger in particular, did them one better. They stood above the times
in which they were nonetheless major protagonists, looked at the goings
on with a razor-sharp eye, and laughed out loud. The real triumph of
Jagger's output was its embedded mockery -- sometimes musical,
sometimes lyrical, sometimes vocal, sometimes sartorial, sometimes
contextual, sometimes overt, and sometimes concealed. His Satanic
apostrophe in Sympathy for the Devil
was, regardless of the (too) obvious political satire of its lyrics, an
extremely subtle satire of the burgeoning cult of pop star gurus like
John Lennon and Bob Dylan. He was making fun of it all...
So was Carlin. Making fun of it all. Which is becoming something of a
lost art. Just this week, for example, we had the sorry prospect of Jon
Stewart (mildly) suggesting that it is okay to make (mild) fun of
Obama, which drew anguished
responses from leftwing fans of one of the most biased "comedy"
shows ever to hit the airwaves. And today, we have a pair of absurd
news stories from Canada, one about a comedian who is is being
prosecuted by one of the "human rights commissions" for making fun of
Lesbian hecklers at one of his shows, and another about the decision by
one of the HRCs to drop the case against Mark
Steyn, despite his unfunny provocations of muslims in a Maclean's
Levant discusses both cases:
Th[e] application to dismiss [the
complaint against the comedian] was rejected this week. Here is the
ruling... that commits the matter to go to trial.
Take a look at who wrote it: Heather MacNaughton, the same tribunal
member who chaired Mark Steyn's show trial earlier this month.
In that trial, too, the funny-ness of jokes became an issue. The
Canadian Islamic Congress said that some of Mark Steyn's jokes weren't
funny, but they also insisted that the CBC's awful "sitcom", Little
Mosque on the Prairies, was indeed funny, and if Steyn didn't think so,
he was a racist.
So MacNaughton feels comfortable in her self-appointed role as
The difference between the Uncredited Generation and those which have
come after is largely about narcissism, which has risen decade
decade as long as it has been tracked. The belief that you and your partial
perspective on the great big whole of everything are so right and so
virtuous that no one is permitted to disagree with you, challenge your
assumptions, or (heaven forbid) laugh their asses off at you when
you're being a dolt is something new on the scene. And, unfortunately,
it also comes at a time when individual perspectives are more ignorant,
partial, fragmented, self-serving, and half-assed than ever before.
That's why devoted Democrats who explode in diva-like tantrums at the
merest whiff of (what they deem) 'fascism' are nevertheless perfectly okay with shutting
of speech for their opponents and even putting
them on trial for what they think The contradictions are invisible
to them because they really do lack any unified conception of a
universe that does not feature them as the perfect, inviolable center
around which everything else must rotate in obedient harmony.
What probably sets the best of the in-between generation apart is that
no one ever put them on a pedestal just for being there. They
distinguished themselves not by demanding attention but by
distinquishing themselves through superior achievement, acuity, and the
analytical powers of observation which must be developed by a healthy
We could use another 'middle-child' generation. The Baby Boomers were
the pampered first children of a new age. The "X," "Y," and "Z" (?)
gens that have come along since are all being spoiled and catered to
like the babies of the family they continuously act like, getting away
with everything just because they can. There's really no part of their
experience that can process the universal perspective on fad issues
Warming, as represented by a graphic that
stands as a perfect
concluding punchline to the Carlin monologue above:
If he's sitting on the Big Electron now looking down at the rest of us,
I'm pretty sure George Carlin is adding his laugh to the great thrum of
his new stage.
Mr. Carlin. We'll remember you with affection and appreciation. That
is, those of us who got the joke when you were here.
Thursday, June 26, 2008
Futile Gestures (#1)
The International CXT Pickup Truck
BACK. Of course it's
childish. But we all have a breaking point. Wasn't there a moment in
the last year or so when you got really really sick to death of all the
environmental hysteria, all the green breastbeating, all the thinly
veiled hatred of the whole species of man on earth? Are you fed up with
hearing about the Toyota Priuses of the Stars, Hollywood mansions with
solar panels, and Al Gore slashing his bloated carbon footprint to a
mere $10,000 a month electric bill?
Yeah, well, me too. Don't you just want to make the hugest, most
politically incorrect environmental statement you can? Here's how you
can do it. It doesn't come cheap, but some of you out there have the
wherewithal to buy and drive an International CXT Pickup Truck, which
makes even Hummers look like Smart
Cars (scroll to see one). Here are some of the CXT's specs:
If you work for one of the mainstream
brands, namely Chevrolet, Dodge, Ford, GMC, Nissan or Toyota, and
"believe" that your trucks are the biggest, toughest and most
powerful--you need to make like R.E.M. and lose your religion. This new
top dawg is so big that neither full-size nor heavy-duty are adequate
descriptions. The best way to describe the 2007 International CXT is
The 2007 International CXT is not only the biggest pickup in the
full-size category, but its the biggest production pickup in the world.
Check out these numbers. Wait, you might want to be seated for this--so
are you seated? No seriously, you need to be seated. The CXT is just
over 21 feet long, 258 inches to be exact. Its cab height is a
staggering 9 feet or 108 inches tall. Think about that a little longer,
because even if you were a 7-foot, 3-inch, 420 pound giant like the
Great Khali from World Wrestling Entertainment, the CXT would still
tower 7 inches above your head. Its bed height alone is just under 5
feet high at 58 inches. Oh by the way the CXT has an 8-foot dualie bed,
and last but not least it has a Sumo wrestler-like curb weight of
Alright this is my last warring, if the first statistics did not knock
you off on your ass, these will. The CXTs entry level engine, the 245
horsepower DT466, also generates 600 pounds feet of torque, and its
bigger brother, the 300 horsepower DT466, pumps out 860 pounds feet of
torque. Oh, and the 310 horsepower DT570? It cranks up an amazing 950
pound feet of torque! The latter enormously high number allows the CXT
to tow up to 17,000 lbs.
Okay. It's not just not cheap. It costs a bundle. $115,000. But this is
America. We can be entrepreneurial. Think about time-sharing with four
or five or ten of your pissed-off friends. Because what could ever be
better than rolling up to the convenience store in the tony suburb with
all the Obama signs on their lawns and dash in for a loaf of bread and
a soda -- in your 14,500 LB INTERNATIONAL CXT PICKUP?! Nothing could
ever be better. The looks. The sagging jaws. The impotent (of course)
liberal fury. Some of you actually live in college towns like Austin,
Madison, Ann Arbor,
Hanover. They would absolutely HATE you. Kewl.
That's an experience that could actually be life-changing. Think about
it. I can hardly think about anything else these days.
*Objection noted. Headline revised.
Hey. Let's start naming
things after San Francisco...
Progressive intellectuals are just loaded wth taste, aren't they? Well,
aren't they? Here's an example:
San Francisco may name sewage treatment
plant after Bush
SAN FRANCISCO: Reagan has his highways. Lincoln has his memorial.
Washington has the capital, and a state, too. But President George W.
Bush may soon be the sole president to have a memorial named after him
that you can contribute to from the bathroom.
From the Department of Damned-With-Faint-Praise, a group going by the
regal-sounding name of the Presidential Memorial Commission of San
Francisco is planning to ask voters here to change the name of a
prize-winning water-treatment plant on the shoreline to the George W.
Bush Sewage Plant.
The plan - hatched, naturally, in a bar - would place a vote on the
November ballot to provide "an appropriate honor for a truly unique
It reminds me of Chris Rock's mantra -- "tired, tired, tired." It's not
clever, it's not witty, it's just juvenile and nasty. So I think it's
time to start paying San Francisco
(and its evil conjoined twin Berkeley) back for
all their disgraceful lowlife antics. Let's start naming some things
after them. Like, say, garbage scows:
And public toilets:
And, well, more public toilets:
I'm sure you can all think of some others. I'm just brainstormingthought
showering here. Forward any additional suggestions you think of.
I'm not claiming a
conspiracy here. I just think it's
interesting and suggestive. With the Democrat Party in the clear
ascendancy (sporting a 20 point lead in voter affiliation), you'd think
the cable channels would be glutted with reruns of The West Wing, just to remind us
all how marvelous it is to have a brilliantly intellectual liberal in
the White House. But where is it? Nowhere. TVGuide.com
couldn't find a
listing for its being shown at all.
I wondered for a bit if it had to do with the estrogen-soaked
final season, which seemed to be preparing us for a Hillary
presidency that the elite media libs suddenly stopped wanting sometime
last year. On the other hand, that season also
featured an attractive young non-white male coming out of nowhere to
steal the Democrat presidential nomination, as well as an unexpectedly
centrist Republican candidate running against him; these were really
quite good guesses. So what gives?
My theory is that forward-thinking liberals in the various network
programming departments are seeing some things in The West Wing that they don't want
to remind the voters about right now. Maybe later, but not now. Let's
forget that the Democrat Party subtly reconfigures its message and
image at regular intervals, and while their fundamental conviction that
bigger government is the answer to all questions remains a constant,
the specifics of their PR strategies at any given time vary
considerably. A party that's betting all the chips on infatuating the
electorate with a "rock star" candidate probably doesn't want to create
any thought-provoking contrasts between Jed Bartlet and Barack Obama.
Bartlet was, accidentally or not, an express opposite of George W.
Bush: a Ph.D. and former college professor from an historic New England
learned Catholic, a dextrous participant in the infighting between the
executive branch and Capitol Hill, and perhaps most importantly, a
near-encyclopedic policy wonk. In the context of this election,
ironically, comparing Obama to Bartlet makes Obama seem more like, uh,
Bush. Think about it for a minute before you howl in outrage.
Take away the differences in pure personality and political
constituencies, and you'll start to see that the Obama campaign bears a
strong resemblance to Bush's 2000 campaign. Time for a change from
eight years of a president who inspired bitter, destructive
partisanship. Tiime for a president who knows how to work with both
sides of the aisle. Time for an outsider who isn't tainted by a
lifetime of grubby inside-the-beltway wheeling and dealing. Yes, the
experience factor is wanting, but at this particular moment in time,
less is more, because we have seen for years now that experience is
more like corruption than wisdom. Trust my good intentions. No need for
lots of specifics. Much better to stick to glossy generalities that
give voters real hope for a desperately needed change in tone. In many
ways, the track records of the campaigns are also similar. A near
constant stream of gaffes, large and small, which betray a layer of
disturbing ignorance beneath the generalities that Jed Bartlet would
have exposed with witheringly sarcastic precision.
Indeed, the whole focus of The West
Wing show seemed to be on exactly the kinds of process issues
that encourage a view of the presidency as a skill position rather than
as a font of feel-good rhetoric. The president must have a grasp of
details, a thorough understanding of the complex interdependent
organizational structures inside, yes, the beltway, and a profound
understanding of history to keep him anchored against the winds of
political pressure and public opinion. It's probably the case that not
too many Americans know Obama's least favorite, and least studied,
subject in school was history, but they will come to experience the
inevitable effects of that hole in his education. His many blunders in
the state primaries are a direct consequence of the fact that he just
doesn't know much about the states, academically as well as personally.
And Jed Bartlet was an economist, fond of lecturing on the subject. He
would have been particularly scornful of Obama's fuzzy grasp of issues
such as the capital gains tax.
And there's also a ticking bomb inside The West Wing that is very specific
and relevant to a huge chunk of 2008 campaign rhetoric and its, well,
lies on all sides. The bomb is addressed directly but incompletely here:
Wing's Ethanol Problem
The West Wing is a smart television program, written by smart
people with access to an enormous amount of expertise. Part of the
show's appeal is its willingness to present both sides, even with
highly controversial issues like the morality and efficacy of the death
penalty or political assassinations. When it comes to ethanol, however,
The West Wing's writers apparently believe there is only one side and
it is exceedingly negative.
This was demonstrated a number of times in the show's early years, when
Aaron Sorkin was in charge. In the first season, Vice President John
Hoynes (Tim Matheson) was asked to break a tie vote in the Senate in
favor of extending the ethanol tax incentive. He balked, since he had
vigorously opposed that incentive when he was in the Senate. At the
show's conclusion, President Bartlet (Martin Sheen) gives Hoynes
permission to kill the incentive, and confesses, "You and I agree on
ethanol, but you were the only one to say it."
The Jan. 26 episode, "King Corn" raised ethanol trashing to an entirely
new level. In this episode, one of the presidential candidates,
liberals as well as conservatives, and Democrats as well as
Republicans, strongly object to ethanol, although in the end all but
one ends up "pandering" to Iowa's caucus voters by endorsing the fuel.
The environmental site in which the above appears is pro-ethanol
-- as are both presidential candidates in 2008 -- and strongly objects
to the "King Corn" episode, which is summarized
at a West Wing fansite with more samples of dialogue:
...Josh and Santos go to Iowa... The
next morning each has a 5:45 wake up call and each immediately turns on
the TV to see the same news story, etc... Each of three candidates that
day (we follow Vinick through the same kinds of things after he has a
5:45 wake up call as well) deals with ethanol and what to tell the Iowa
Corn Grower's Expo about this product as each addresses the group at
different times this day. Even Russell, whose speech is first, tells
"It takes more oil to transport it and fertilize it
than we save using it"
"Sir, you're not considering changing the speech?"
"...Don't worry, I'm not suicidal. I'm going to take
The environmental site is absolutely correct about The West Wing's writers. Ethanol is
something of a running joke in the series, a kind of all-encompassing
symbol of the lies politicians on both sides of the aisle are willing
to tell for votes. With the Hoynes vote against ethanol mentioned above
occurring in the first season of the show and the "King Corn" blasphemy
in the last season, that's seven years of writer antipathy to a
linchpin of the "energy independence" and "decarbonization" policies of
both parties today. I haven't seen every episode by any means, but my
memory tells me that ethanol comes up more often in West Wing conversations than any
episode guide will reference.
The fact that ethanol is a symbolic litmus test of political integrity
in West Wing Land may very well keep the show off the air for a long
time to come. Maybe forever. Because ethanol is even worse than a
litmus test. It's also a highly visible thread that if tugged on enough
could lead to a complete unraveling of everyone's political plans for
dealing with energy issues and so-called climate change issues. Biofuel
mandates represent the first very large-scale attempt to address both
sets of issues by immediate government intervention in markets. If the
first such attempt should unleash a tidal wave of unintended negative
consequences, the twin identity of ethanol as a marker of political
dishonesty and as a headline for misguided government attempts to
manage the natural forces of the planet could prove the undoing of a
whole generation of politicians, in both parties.
Think I'm overstating the case? Are you sure? Then take the time to
watch ALL of this C-span
video of a speech by Robert
Bryce, author of "Gusher of Lies: The Dangerous Delusions of Energy
Independence." Yes, it's an American Enterprise Institute speech, but
as Bryce proudly proclaims at the beginning of his remarks, his
political roots are as a liberal and even a left-winger. (He even
begins with a set of Bush jokes.) Actually studying the energy industry
in depth, however, which has become his lifetime avocation, forced him
to accept that the laws of thermodynamics did
not conform to his political preferences. His presentation is stuffed
with facts even political junkies know little of, and what political
content he offers arises directly from those facts, not from his
advocacy of any politician or party. How can we be sure of that?
Because he can prove that they're all
lying to us. (The Flash Player works well once you figure out the
clunky controls, and there is a full-screen option as well.) As further
incentive, I'll dangle the news that he proposes a sensible and
dramatically improved solution for the 21st century with respect to
meeting fuel needs and
minimizing carbon output without crashing the global economy.
To end on a less serious note, those who have been missing The West
Wing might enjoy the following all-purpose episode produced by
Well, I enjoyed it anyway.
Nancy Pelosi Quits
"His name is Bruno... I think."
wobbly Speaker of the House resigned late Wednesday to pursue "the one true love of my
life, come what may."
having gone missing for almost twelve hours during which her family
frantically sought her whereabouts, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi
made a brief appearance before cameras Wednesday night to announce that
she was leaving Congress to "follow my man to Tijuana for the
Pan-American Tattoo Festival," because "he told me to -- or be ready to
get my ass kicked from here to Mexico."
Colleagues and friends of the Speaker expressed astonishment and dismay
that she would so suddenly abandon one of the most powerful political
posts in the nation. Her husband was reportedly so distraught that he
cancelled his entire round of appearances at San Francisco bathhouses
tonight. Senator Diane Feinstein was the only
Pelosi intimate on Capitol Hill to tender any word of support: "In all fairness," she said, "I've spent a weekend or two
myself in Oakland with a few dozen of my closest motorcycling
friends, and I
recognize that look in her eyes. When you've been well and truly, er,
befriended, within an inch of your life, it doesn't matter whether
you're a U.S. Senator, Speaker of the House, or Empress of Goddam
Japan. He snaps his fingers and you do what he says."
When asked for a comment, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said,
"Damn." Moments later, he added, "Damn." Then he concluded, " If only I'd
have, well, you know, not wasted so much time talking about screwing
No party elections have yet been scheduled to determine a replacement
Speaker, although multiple party-type parties are in full swing all
across Washington, DC. According to party insiders, Senator Barbara
Boxer, also of California, is leading the swinging by a head and a
"surprisingly agile abdomen."
A spokesperson for the Hillary Clinton campaign dismissed rumors that
the former candidate had anything to do with Pelosi's resignation.
"Bruno is just a casual friend of the family," she said. "He has no
official duties in the campaign organization. What he does in his
private life is completely unrelated to any services he might perform,
if and whether he does, for Mr. and Mrs. Clinton."
The San Francisco office of the FBI was still printing out Bruno's rap
sheet at press time but estimated that the last page would be in hand
before the morning network shows went on the air at 7 am.
The XOFF News Team
Monday, June 23, 2008
Lowpoint in Sports
scene repeated all across sporting America this weekend.
The longest day of the year always kind of sneaks
up on me.
But this weekend was the summer solstice, which begins both summer and
the six-month long decline in the length of days. I was hardly
expecting a sudden, coincident, all-time historical lowpoint. But that
also occurred this weekend. Fortunately, there was plenty to keep us
busy about the household -- mowing the acreage, cleaning out the
garage, filling feeders to keep up with voracious goldfinches,
hummingbirds, etc, and grilling burgers and gorging on homemade
blueberry pie (w/fresh Jersey blueberries b'God) -- but in-and-amongst
and after the domestic fun, we began to be aware of the shocking
cultural milestone that had dropped on our heads.
Hockey is done, except for their utterly inscrutable draft. The NBA
season is over. The only NFL activity involves tracking which prima
donna athlete refuses to tie his shoes in minicamp (Chad Johnson), and
baseball entered the nadir of its season with a round of pointless
inter-league games even the SportsTalk lunatics can't bring themselves
to care about. Wimbledon wouldn't be playing out its boring early round
matches till Monday. The Tour de France hasn't started yet, and are
they really going to inflict that drug-infested scandal marathon on us
this year anyway? And now, for the first time in over a decade in this
customary dead spot of the sports year,there's no Tiger for the
announcers to talk about during soporific tournaments like the one
that's played a week after the U.S. Open. This is as close to zero as
the sports world can get, now or ever.
We looked in vain through the weekend listings for the usual glut of
sporting events covered by network and cable channels. Oh, indeed,
there was a plethora of sad substitutes as programmers tried
desperately to fill the void: Formula 1 racing, which hasn't raised my
pulse above a flicker since the days of Niki Lauda and Jackie Stewart.
Arena football -- who can watch that crap? -- it's like tabletop pool,
a novelty that wears off within minutes of a first encounter. Olympic
trials in judo (??) and women's gymnastics ("Oh, dear. She fell off the
beam. How sad." How usual.) One of the cable channels was actually
covering the NHL draft live! Live? Good God. ESPN was reduced to
running professional bowling, automobile shows from last year, and
promos for the -- wait for it! -- upcoming NBA draft! One of the
language channels was showing "futbol" eliminations for the 2010 World
Cup. 2010???!!! In what universe does that make any sense?
Which reminds me. Mighty ESPN also sank as low as devoting hours and
hours of its precious airtime to the 2008 European Soccer Tournament.
actually watched some of it. Mrs. CP got a modest kick out of watching
the hated Orangemen of Holland lose in the closing moments to Russia
while I was mostly busy grilling burgers outside. And, then, on Sunday,
out of a pitifully unfounded hope that something interesting would
happen in the Italy-Spain quarter-final, we actually watched our second soccer game in one weekend.
The shame of it. What can I say? I am personally fond of Italy. There
was nothing else on. The weather map insisted we were under imminent
threat from severe thunderstorms all afternoon (which never came). And,
yes, I should have known. As Instapunk regulars know, this
assessed the appeal of soccer in some detail. But I, personally,
never sat there and watched an entire game of world-class soccer.
You'll never know. Words are inadequate. They played the entire 90
minutes of regulation with no score. Then they played two 15-minute
overtime periods with no score. For the math-challenged, that's two full hours of "sport" in which
nothing whatever happened. There are no 'plays' to speak of. One team
starts out kicking the ball down the field, passing it to one another
as if they have something in mind. But the other team always takes it
way from them before anything can happen, and then they do exactly the
same thing. Every once in a while two players make contact, one of them
falls down and begins shrieking as if he's just been hammered into the
Brian Urlacher (no f'ing way, Jose) and the ref gives the guy who
touched him a 'yellow card.' Then there's a 'free kick,'
which is about as free as all other things European; the kicker faces a
solid wall of opposing players between him and the goal. So he kicks
the ball over their heads, over the goal, and into the crowd. Then they
The only entertainment value is a kind of expanding wonder. What do
they use for highlights on TV news/sports coverage? Crowd shots? Clips
of players rolling around on the ground pretending to be hurt? Refs
dealing yellow cards as deftly as Vegas poker sharks? All those kicks
go way left or way right or way o-o-o-ver that gigantic net? What
statistics do the soccer encyclopedias compile? There's nothing to
count or keep track of that might be a finite accomplishment or 'play.'
Number of pointless steals of a ball from the opposition? Number of
pointless losses of the ball to the opposition. The ratio of pointless
steals to pointless losses? And what do their career statistics look
like? A Hall of Famer like Beckham makes history by scoring, like, uh,
three goals lifetime? And, uh, he played 19,000 hours of goal-free time
I don't know. I don't know why the rules are systematically designed to
prevent scoring. I don't know why players and teams are disqualified in
the next game for routine
fouls committed in this game,
thus preemptively destroying the purity and fairness of tournament
don't know why the rules deliberately remove the suspense of a
down-ticking clock by adding unknown quantities of penalty time after regulation play, thus
ensuring a built-in, premeditated anticlimax. I don't know why
hundreds of thousands come to watch and weep and wail and sing and
cheer. I don't know why I
Somebody eventually won. On penalty kicks. Which, as far as I'm
concerned, they could have done without wasting 120 minutes of running
around futilely on the field beforehand.
Of course I do have some suggestions. I honestly believe, having
watched, that there is a good
game rattling around somewhere inside the boneheaded bore the current
rules mandate. Adopt hockey's penalty box/power play format (pay now,
not tomorrow), jettison the yellow card/red card bullshit, and penalize
fakers just as sternly as those who commit fouls. (Who really wants to
watch professional athletes making deliberate pussies of themselves?
Not even Europeans should get off on that...) Quit adding penalty
increments at the end of regulation. And, for God's sake, allow the
fast break that makes basketball such a volatile and momentum-driven
game. Let the lone superstar go
one-on-one with the goalie in the heat of play on the field, as
opposed to the artificial stasis of the post-game penalty-kick snore.
If your game can't be decided by being played with all players on the
field, it's not much of a game. It may be a kind of theater. But it's
not a sport.
is a sport. The kind of truly extreme moment soccer can never produce. Not without big rule changes anyway.
It can't come down to refs
and pussies. For example, in this one NFL play I can count three/four 'yellow cards,' easy.
Sorry. I know it's tres
inappropriate. But right now, I'm really missing sports.
Hey, though. I'm just a dumb American. An American who will remember
the summer solstice weekend of 2008 as the all-time worst moment in
sports in my lifetime.
Otherwise, it was a wonderful couple of days.
The Atheist Wars
more clearly by turning your back on everything.
FROM THE FRONT. Since we threw down the gauntlet, they keep coming.
Not in a wave but in fits and starts, solitaries that they are. I've
contended with a few in the comment sections, but it occurred to me I
should share the kind of high-minded debate customary with the hard
core; that is, those whose tone is consistent with what Rachel got in
the post that inspired my
intervention. Here is an exchange that began with this comment
(Yes, he calls himself "My Comment Name"):
IP sez: "There is nothing -- no
principle of science whatever --
to rule out the possibility that an intelligence capable of generating
the universe, from string or quark to multi-galactic infinity, would
not also be capable of observing or participating in everything, in
perpetuity, without ever violating the laws of his own creation and yet
accomplishing his will in everything"
There's also no principle of science to rule out the invisible
leprechauns dancing on my eyelids, but I don't see anybody getting rich
offa that shit.
You refer to "deists" quite a bit, but
I take it that we are talking about your belief in the Judaeo-Christian
deity in particular? Why not Mbombo, or Mangala, or Kamui, or Brahma,
or any of the multitudes of other cosmic individuals that have been
lumbered with responsibility for this crazy universe we ride around in?
After all, any of those
stories is as useful as an explanatory tool the one you currently
subscribe to; so why not?
worth thinking about, because only when you understand why you have
written off all the thousands of other gods, will you understand why
atheists have written off yours, too.
Basically, man, we are all
atheists. Some of us just believe in one less god than you do.
I chose to respond for reasons I made clear:
"You refer to "deists" quite a
bit, but may I take it that we are talking about your belief in the
Judaeo-Christian deity in particular?"
No, you may not. You didn't read the
post. Which is absolutely 100 percent typical of your ilk.
arrogance has replaced not only logic but the ability to read a
complete essay or a complete paragraph. You're an ignorant,
presumptuous, time-wasting fool. Learn how to read before you come back
I framed the argument carefully and
deliberately excluded -- in the first paragraph -- all matters of
specific religious preference. Your inability to perceive that is an
indictment of whatever you BELIEVE constituted your education.
Sadly I must inform you you didn't
receive an education -- merely a set of unthinking poses.
This made him angry, though it didn't change his argument by one jot
Instapunk: "I framed the argument
deliberately excluded -- in the first paragraph -- all matters of
specific religious preference."
Well, that was always
the other option, but your macho posturing must have blindsided me for
a moment, because I momentarily considered that such a chickenshit
tactic was beneath a man of your pectoral magnitude.
Do you subscribe to any particular
creation story or not? Are you seriously telling us that you think all
of them are just dandy, provided that "god/gods did it" forms the basis
of that story? Do you expect us to accept that you subscribe to mere
Do you accept the story of Mbombo or
do you not? Am I really so worthy of your scorn for suspecting that you
do not currently worship, among others, Kamui? Or am I in actual fact
absolutely correct about this?
Deliberately refusing to
pin yourself down - or, in other words, failing to stand up for what
you believe - is not just a sneaky argumentative sleight of hand; it is
pure moral cowardice. The swagger of your response is belied by the
lack of balls shown in your original post.
Time for the slam dunk, plus some exposition that may be useful to
"Deliberately refusing to pin yourself down - or, in other words,
failing to stand up for what you believe - is not just a sneaky
argumentative sleight of hand; it is pure moral cowardice. The swagger
of your response is belied by the lack of balls shown in your original
Interesting. "Pure moral cowardice"? What does that term mean to an
The question I posed sits at a far more fundamental level than any
possible questions of morality. It's hardly swagger to point out that
knowing there is no god is just as much a declaration of faith as
knowing there is a god. What you don't like, and won't address, is that
it's every bit as impossible to prove there is no god as it is to prove
there is a god.
I'm fascinated by your insistence that I must reveal to you my specific
religious beliefs before you can seriously come to grips with the
rational basis of my argument. To me that's a sign that your own
convictions exist only in opposition to the convictions of others. If I
really were a religion-neutral deist who disdained all forms of
organized religion, the passion of your opposition would begin to go
limp. Which means it's necessary for you to evade the pure
philosophical argument and make of me a secret religious fanatic hiding
behind logic to prevent the death blows you can always wield against
the foolish faithful.
You see, you are deluded by an assumption that is probably invisible,
as deep assumptions often are, that specific sectarian religious
beliefs come first and then result in convenient answers to the
underlying philosophical questions. If this isn't the case, you're shit
out of luck, because all your arguments are based on that inference.
I'm afraid I must disappoint you in this regard. As a very young man, I
discarded anything like religious faith until I had taken the main
questions all the way to their most basic elements, the ones I
described in my post. All the steps toward what you would call religion
were taken only after I had wrestled with those basics. To this day,
whatever faith I have is a frail thing. I am no evangelist. The
argument I made is all I am sure of, which regardless of how you
deliberately misunderstand it, consists of asserting that atheists and
deists bear an equal burden of proof that neither can meet.
My own religious faith is irrelevant, because it is not constant, not
certain, not at times above the level of mere wistfulness and
speculation. It does contain beliefs about morality and divinity, but
these beliefs are subject to continuous questioning, doubt,
self-examination, and, yes, hope.
I suspect this is something you know nothing of. Your own certainty
sees its mirror image in those you despise the most. You demand that
others reveal to you an exact set of postulates to which you can
favorably compare your own. Then you feel prepared to go to war and
win. Like any goddam lawyer whose idea of intelligence is destroying
the other guy's argument by any and every means without actually having
a fully realized synthesis of
What you don't understand, and never will, is that those who aspire to
religious faith, in all philosophically honest traditions, are not
fixed and rigid cartoons of churchiness but constant questioners. They
know they do not know, and they know that faith is a choice which is
not made once but every day, every minute, every second, throughout
No thinking Christian would doubt that there are times when the Pope
himself does not believe in the God of the New Testament, the
resurrection, or even salvation. (Which does not make me a Roman
Catholic, btw, because I'm not). The nature of faith is that it IS
self-consciously faith, a matter of willing belief not certainty; a
choice made repeatedly, not a pigeonhole one falls into and defends
savagely against all comers.
You know nothing of this. How could you? Unable to confront or contend
with my logic, you CHOOSE to see the most elemental matters of
philosophy as a battle of balls. Which makes you a clown. With balls
like a pair of infected peas.
To the extent that I swagger, it's only because the very basic logic I
employ is incontrovertible. To the extent atheists are certain, they
are deluding themselves. More than deists. Because there are too many
primary questions no mere human being can presume to know the absolute
An example. One self-satisfied atheist (in the comments) cited as an
example of his superior knowledge context the fact that we still don't
know where the moon came from. He's right. We don't. It's the closest
object to our home in the whole incomprehensibly vast universe, and we
don't know for sure where it came from, why it's there, or why its size and
orbit are so oddly synchronized with the earth's orbit of the sun, and
he believes that's somehow proof that his atheism is scientifically
That's insanity. As is your pompous posturing. You know next to nothing
about the universe you live in. For you to claim otherwise (and I
suspect you're dying to claim you do) is proof of every point of my
Now. What of you? Who are you? What of yourself, your life, your
values, your own beliefs about life and meaning and morality have you
shared? Nothing. And I'm the
I hardly think so. I'm on record here with hundreds of thousands of
words about my beliefs, convictions, experiences, and tastes. You
arrive like a thief in the night, anonymous, hidden behind your bluster
and bile, and you point a headless, bodyless finger of accusation.
You're a joke.
So why did I respond? Because my considered response may be helpful to
other inquiring minds like my own. And because when an opponent goes
out of his way to give you a perfect setup for a spike, it's hard to
resist slamming it down his throat.
Now go away.
And so it goes.
Talk about drawing blood. 'My Common Name' felt obligated to respond to
his marquee status in this post and launched another verbose and
convoluted attack. So I smacked him. Which pissed him off. The text of
his explosion is quoted at the beginning of my response, which is,
again, not for his consumption, but for everyone who approaches these
questions not as an acid debater but as an inquirer.
"I donít consider my position one of
certainty, either, even if you do. Iíve explained, very roughly, the
process whereby I have come upon my (current) position. Iím happy with
it, and really, thatís all that matters."
"Well, Jesus Mothercunting Christ. ThatÖ thatís truly awesome. I swear
to your god that that is the lamest fucking thing thatís ever been
addressed to me in my long and sordid history of internet roustabouts.
Pwníed in your bollocks, you ridiculous pissarse."
"Bollocks?" "Pissarse?" Gordon Ramsay, I presume? You're just another foul-mouthed
Brit (I include Aussies and all the various disaffected Celts in that) (and btw, haven't seen 'cunt' used as a verb since that literary giant William Peter Blatty introduced it in 'The Exorcist.' Hmmm. Is that what the limeys call contextual irony?) jacking off with words about ideas
you don't really care about except as a demonstration of your
assumptive superiority. Reversion to precious homo-erotic Brit slang is
the indelible stamp of of an impotent 'arse' pining for lost days of
And you talk about lame.
What you'll never be able to see in a thousand years is that there's no
point in talking with you. Because the only thing you're about is
scoring points. And that really IS an atheist preoccupation.
Your rhetorical winding and twisting is very much like the last video
from 'Love and Death' Wade
Pelham posted here. You don't have anything against religious faith
per se, but but But BUT... the faithful really do all have to admit that you are
smarter. You have nothing against morality and if pressed, you will
admit to moral feelings yourself, but, But BUT... that doesn't mean
anything except when the moral outrage is expressed by you.
You are an atheist within limits,
you say, with no presumption of certainty, because you're basing your
lack of belief on the math of probability, but you're still superior to
agnostics because their agnosticism exists only within limits which are
(presumably) not based on the same understanding of mathematical
probability you have achieved. And math, lest we forget, is a human
invention which has a certain utility but no meaning and blah blah blah
but but but. Aaaagh.
You exist in a vacuum. Your dudgeon is a meaningless artifice. Your
life is a meaningless sequence of masturbatory gestures. YOU'RE NOT IN
THE GAME. You're a pissed-off referee with a pocketful of yellow
cards and red cards you fling about as if your rules were something
other than a dry cough between the lines of 'Being and Nothingness.'
You're a (what do you chaps call it?) wanker. That's why I say you're
pwn'ed. You're not at all interested in the deep questions; you're just
fighting. Because you can. And because you have resentments so deep
down in your nature that you can't resist roaring into the fray. Which
means you're a fucking boring waste of time.
I'll grant you one nugget of response to your mumbo-jumbo creation
question. My creation story, the one I believe, lies in the field of
potentialities between Hawking's possibly nonexistent (because always
-- Zeno's Arrow-like -- infinitely approaching the unreachable limit)
Big Bang and Roger Penrose's quantum mind. There is a space in that
conceptual interval which leaves room for all presently conceived
possibilities and innumerable ones we can't conceive of. It may allow
for all kinds of relationships that science cannot presently
comprehend, including a universe in which ideas, art, poetry, symbols
and allegories -- and Jung's synchronicity -- interact seamlessly with
the physics we keep trying to reduce to (mere) math. In this context,
there might be a place for humanity's many metaphorical creation myths
and its curiously parallel religious convictions to be something more
than fairy tales, fallacies, jokes, proofs of mankind's talent for
self-delusion, and catalysts for your contempt. The continuously
unfolding and infinitely reinterpretable story of Christ's sacrifice on
the cross may -- may, I say
-- actually be of a piece with the universe itself. These are
conceptions which have the potential to expand minds and deepen the
most minute aspects of human experience -- without consigning us all to
fanaticism or irrational denial.
But every word you write demonstrates that you're not interested in
such possibilities, even though you confessedly cannot rule them out.
Worse, there's no way you could ever understand the dimensions of such
a universe. Which would be like string theory rendered in an
umpty-dimensional hologram embodying emotions and thoughts as well as
particles and their components. I'm talking about a kind of imagination
you're too smart to realize you're too damaged to aspire to.
You arrive here to deliver a series of sanctimonious jabs. I respond
with one unanticipated uppercut, and you are shocked, shocked that
anyone could dismiss your sheets of verbal diarrhea as, well, diarrhea.
Got news for you, mate. Life ain't about taking the integral of all
equations to arrive at a bunch of falsely reassuring straight lines.
Life is fabulously, wondrously, beautifully, even miraculously
mysterious and interesting. All the stuff we don't know is a ticket to
the most exciting ride any form of life has ever taken. But you'd rather
be the smartest paramecium in the petrie dish. Excuse me. A Brit paramecium. That would be
kind of the dictionary definition of a condescending, unimaginative
I repeat. Go away.
InstaPunk is a persona of this website. If you did any research, you'd
find that most of the regular commenters think they know who he is in
terms of a real-world identity. But they're wrong about that, sometimes
to their discomfiture. His is a virtual identity, an emergent
electronic property of this website, and his name is InstaPunk.
It's true, my friends. I am, on these screens, only electrons and
thought forms. Forgive me for any misunderstandings and hurt feelings
that fact sometimes causes.
Brilliant. The myth of superior Brit education.
Okay. This thread is all done now. I
Hugh Douglas Files: Only NFL and NBA players are athletes. Right.
Driving these things is exhausting, dangerous, and, yes, an athletic
OVERSTATING THE CASE. Okay. I made a joke yesterday about Formula 1. I was going for a
laugh. Truth is, I have always been mesmerized by Formula 1. They're
the ultimate competitors in all of human sport. As a boy, I had the
privilege of watching Mark Donohue when
he was still an amateur. He drove an Elva numbered "000," and in a 20
lap race on an incredibly narrow 1.2 mile sports car track he lapped
everybody. Everybody. He was also a Brown-educated engineer, which to
Douglases of this world probably means that he simply outsmarted
the competition with a lot of tech trickery and hand skills. But
nothing that required the talents of an athlete. I was a fan of Mark
Donohue. I was in awe of Jimmy Clark and Jackie Stewart.
Two of the three died in cars. It doesn't get much more serious than that.
It's a funny thing. InstaPunk (The Boss) has been having his fun with atheists
of late, sending them into predictable spins of illogical,
emotional self immolation. But it takes a blizzard of words and days of
osmosis for him to do his damage to the callow pretenders who think
their Internet experience qualifies them as philosophers. The amazing
thing about cars is that they can make you confront God in an a split
second. I literally could not list every internal combustion engine
powered vehicle I have driven (or ridden) at one time or another -- Dodge
PowerWagons, John Deere tractors, Triumphs, Nortons, Harleys, BSAs,
Jags (a bunch), Bugattis, Cobras, Chrysler 440s, Trans Ams, ChrisCrafts, 60 mph speedboats,
airboats -- and I have streaked across the land and watery expanses of the rural
southern counties of my state at speeds which, at my present age, make
me blush. In those mad rushes I have had occasional brushes with the
prospect of sudden death, but there was only one experience that made me
appreciate the true stature of professional race car drivers.
There used to be a franchise called Malibu Grand Prix. You piad your
money for five or ten laps on a tiny but demonically intricate course behind the wheel
of an open-wheeled, under-powered race car for the privilege of having
your lap times displayed to everyone as you drove. Initially, it was a
blast. Those of us who knew something about driving turned in stunning
lap times that impressed our girlfriends and even the girlfriends of
other less fortunate drivers. But after the third lap there is a
fourth, and a fifth, and a sixth, and your timing starts to stutter,
and your body and brain grow weary, and what was once exuberant fun
becomes work. Labor. Then you begin making mistakes. You're actually
out of breath. The legs you never gave any thought to at all are
suddenly leaden, slow to do their automatic business with the pedals.
Your arms, hands, whatever, aren't quick enough with the steering
wheel. And here you are -- a guy who risks his life successfully every
damn day on real world roads at much higher speeds than this --
gradually losing control of a vehicle on a f___ng carnival ride.
I'm not up to discussing philosophy at the level InstaPunk has set. But
here's what I know. There are flashes, somewhere between the crises you
create for yourself at free high speed and the exhaustion of trying to
do it in a disciplined state of endurance, that put you face to face
with death, eternity, and your own shortcomings. I'm thinking the
atheists who are so damn sure InstaPunk is a fool haven't experienced
moments like this.
Is that the 'foxhole' argument? Maybe it is. I don't know. I really
don't care. I'd settle for Hugh Douglas
watching the YouTube video up top and then reassessing his bullshit
position that race car drivers aren't athletes. Of course, he'd
probably be willing to make an exception for Lewis Hamilton, once he finds
out who he is. Any progess is still progress after all. Hugh concedes
that Tiger Woods is an athlete, though all other golfers aren't. And
when he looks into it, Lewis Hamilton might be an athlete, too, though
all other race car drivers obviously aren't. We're waiting for the next
step of your enlightenment, Hugh.