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Willisms

« August 2007 | WILLisms.com | October 2007 »

Media Matters: Paid Liars

Media Matters, George Soros' leftist propaganda arm, is making waves by accusing Rush Limbaugh of saying that all anti-war soldiers are phony soldiers. Watch the video above and you will see Rush himself destroy this emerging liberal myth by pointing out that he was referring to one specific undisputably phony soldier: Jesse MacBeth.

This smacks of desperation by Media Matters, does it not? So chastened are they by the response to ShoveOff.org's 'Betray Us' ad (ShoveOff.org being Soros' other extreme leftist organization) that they are seeking some kind of immoral equivalence here. Instead, they have presented bloggers such as myself with a golden opportunity to compound the harm done to them by the Betray Us ad. Now, we can also show how completely dishonest Soros' other organization is, with Rush himself providing the evidence that is clear as sunlight.

How great it is that we live in an age of new media, without liberal gate keepers to perpetuate such lies with impunity.

Posted by Ken McCracken · 29 September 2007 12:03 AM · Comments (2)

Wednesday Caption Contest:: Part 123

This week's WILLisms.com Caption Contest photograph:

too much fest.jpg

Here is the actual caption:
A Bavarian boy takes a nap in the hand cart pulled by his parents during the tradtional folklore parade on the second day of the Oktoberfest beer festival in Munich , Sunday, Sept. 23, 2007.
You can't expect us to believe that. Give us an honest caption, please!

Entries will remain open until 11:59 PM, Central Standard Time, Tuesday, Oktober 2. Submit your captions in the comments section, or email at mccracken.ken@gmail.com.

Last week's photo:

segway cops.jpg

Winners from last week:

1. Bigfoot: (via email)

No one will dare resist arrest, now that we have our high-powered mobile TASER units.

2. Zsa Zsa:

OoooFTA!! I can only blame the schnitzel for that exhaust...

3. Wyatt Earp:

Let's get drunk and invade Poland!

To caption, or not to caption - that is the question. Enter today!

Posted by Ken McCracken · 26 September 2007 08:29 AM · Comments (288)

Your Quick Primer On The Maroon Monks Of Myanmar

myanmar flag.jpg

Yesterday 1,000 maroon-robed Buddhist monks led 100,000 civilians in a peaceful march against the ruling military junta in Myanmar, the largest demonstrations since 1988. The military cracked down hard nearly twenty years ago, and thousands died. Aung San Suu Kyi, the leader of the opposition National League Democracy has been under house arrest for most of the time since the uprising. Aung San Suu Kyi is the daughter of Aung San, the liberator of Burma who was assassinated in 1947 just before Burma achieved independence.

500 monks visited her home last Saturday, where she made her first public appearance in four years.

Aung_San_Suu_Kyi.jpg
Aung_San.jpg
Aung San Suu Kyi
Aung San

The Buddhist monks in Myanmar protesting against the governing junta are probably the only social group in the nation that can cause the government to flinch. The huge protests in Yangon, the capital (formerly Rangoon) were sparked by the government raising fuel prices, in a poverty-stricken nation already wracked by shortages.

There are perhaps as many as half a million monks in Burma, which is not unusual in places like Burma and Thailand which practice theravada Buddhism. A great many of the soldiers the military junta relies on to maintain power were probably monks at one time. The monks are highly esteemed in Burmese society, and given great deference - which causes headaches for the military regime. According to journalist Zinn Linn, a former prisoner in Myanmar, "for many - even the most senior generals – to act against the monks is the highest crime in Buddhist teachings, so they are reluctant."

myanmartroops.jpg

Myanmar is one of the least-free nations on earth:

The Freedom in the World 2004 report by Freedom House notes that "The junta rules by decree, controls the judiciary, suppresses nearly all basic rights, and commits human rights abuses with impunity. Military officers hold most cabinet positions, and active or retired officers hold most top posts in all ministries. Official corruption is reportedly rampant both at the higher and local levels."

Brad Adams, director of Human Rights Watch's Asia division, in a 2004 address described the human rights situation in the country as appalling: "Burma is the textbook example of a police state. Government informants and spies are omnipresent. Average Burmese people are afraid to speak to foreigners except in most superficial of manners for fear of being hauled in later for questioning or worse. There is no freedom of speech, assembly or association.

Posted by Ken McCracken · 25 September 2007 03:37 AM · Comments (140)

Not Much Hillarity Here

Hillary Clinton will shill for six racist thugs who beat down a kid and put him in the hospital, while disrespecting the general leading our nation in war in Iraq.

Rank opportunism, cowardice, utter lack of principle . . . I could go on and on here.

(h/t Hot Air)

Update: Drudge has a headline stating that Hillary called Dick Cheney 'Darth Vader'. Wasn't Hillary the one who decried the 'politics of personal destruction'? I guess we can add hypocrite to her ever-lengthening list of faults.

Posted by Ken McCracken · 19 September 2007 05:07 PM · Comments (14)

Wednesday Caption Contest: Part 122

This week's WILLisms.com Caption Contest photograph:

segway cops.jpg

Here is the actual caption:
German police officers ride their Segway scooters as they control the traffic in front of the fair ground of the International Car Show in Frankfurt, central Germany, Thursday, Sept. 13, 2007.
Yeah sure, we're supposed to believe that? Give us a real caption, please!

Entries will remain open until 11:59 PM, Central Standard Time, Tuesday, September 25. Submit your captions in the comments section, or email at mccracken.ken@gmail.com.

Last week's photo:

Rice Hoyer Pelosi.jpg

Winners from last week:

1. Not Me: (via email)

Pelosi -- Ok, but as Democrat, I'm still blacker than you. You just have a better tan.

2. Poole:

Steny, you're over 60 and you've never had your prostate checked? It's so easy, painless and quick. Turn around and we'll demonstrate.
Ahhh, no thanks, ladies...

3. Counter Trey:

Condi: "Nancy, what did the five fingers say to the face?"

Nonstop Nancy: "I Don't know, what?"

Condi: "SLAP"

To the captioner goes the spoils. Enter today!

Posted by Ken McCracken · 19 September 2007 01:15 PM · Comments (20)

Dozens Of Iranians And Syrians Killed In Nerve Gas Accident

. . . but it happened way back in July.

The Jerusalem Post is reporting the following:

Proof of cooperation between Iran and Syria in the development and proliferation of weapons of mass destruction was brought to light Monday in a Jane's Magazine report that dozens of Iranian engineers and 15 Syrian officers were killed in a July 23 accident in Syria.

According to the report, cited by Channel 10, the joint Syrian-Iranian team was attempting to mount a chemical warhead on a scud missile when the explosion occurred, spreading lethal chemical agents, including sarin nerve gas and VX gas.

The factory was created specifically for the purposes of altering ballistic missiles to carry chemical payloads, the magazine report claimed.

Could these nerve gasses have originally come from Saddam Hussein? Iraqi General Georges Sada claimed that Iraq sent its WMDs to Syria, a claim that has never been disproven.

Now Jane's is an extremely well-respected reporting institution, and this is big big news. Or it should be. How come we hadn't heard about this?

Update: Ynet is also reporting on this story, also based on the Jane's article - with a few more facts:

According to the report by the British magazine, the explosion occurred early in the morning on July 26, in a factory in the city of Halab, as the officers were attempting to mount a chemical warhead with mustard gas on a Scud-C missile.

A fire which started in the missile's engine led to an explosion near a storage location of chemical substances. The blast spread lethal chemical agents, including mustard gas, VX gas and sarin nerve gas, which are considered extremely toxic and are banned for use according to international treaties.

GlobalSecurity.org's in-depth article on Syria's well-established chemical weapons program tells us that Syria is not a signatory to the international conventions on chemical and biological weapons, nor has it signed the Nuclear Test-Ban Treaty.

Syria has a "robust chemical weapons program, perhaps one of the most advanced in the Middle East, and a variety of delivery methods." Syria also has huge reserves of the phosphates needed to manufacture them. Fortunately, they do not have the means to manufacture many of the precursors required for these weapons - "the country is still very depending on outside assistance in procuring important precursor chemicals and equipment."

Syria also has the means to deliver such weapons:

  • Four SSM brigades: 1 with FROG, 1 with Scud Bs, 1 with Scud Cs, and 1 with SS-21s.
  • "several thousand aerial bombs, filled mostly with sarin," and between 50 to 100 ballistic missile warheads.
  • New long range North Korean Scud Cs, with ranges of up to 600 kilometers and possible nerve gas warheads.
  • May be converting some long range surface-to-air and naval cruise missiles to use chemical warheads.
  • SS-21 launchers and at least 36 SS-21 missiles with 80-100 kilometers range.
  • Scud B launchers and Scud B missiles with 310 kilometers range.
  • Short range M-1B missiles
  • SS-N-3, and SSC-1b cruise missiles.
  • Su-24 long range strike fighters.
  • MiG-23BM Flogger F fighter ground attack aircraft.
  • Su-20 fighter ground attack aircraft.
  • Su-22 fighter ground attack aircraft.
  • Multiple rocket launchers and tube artillery.

Posted by Ken McCracken · 18 September 2007 05:50 PM · Comments (21)

Chris Matthews Writes A Talking Point For Osama

Bob Woodward in the Washington Post debunked claims today that Alan Greenspan's new memoir says the War in Iraq is about an oil grab by the U.S. The article states that oil was indeed a major national security concern of the administration prior to the invasion of Iraq, and rightly so:

a top-secret National Security Presidential Directive, titled "Iraq: Goals, Objectives and Strategy" and signed by Bush in August 2002 -- seven months before the invasion -- listed as one of many objectives "to minimize disruption in international oil markets."

Greenspan supported the invasion of Iraq, for much the same reasons:

His main support for Hussein's ouster, though, was economically motivated. "If Saddam Hussein had been head of Iraq and there was no oil under those sands," Greenspan said, "our response to him would not have been as strong as it was in the first gulf war. And the second gulf war is an extension of the first. My view is that Saddam, looking over his 30-year history, very clearly was giving evidence of moving towards controlling the Straits of Hormuz, where there are 17, 18, 19 million barrels a day" passing through.

Greenspan said disruption of even 3 to 4 million barrels a day could translate into oil prices as high as $120 a barrel -- far above even the recent highs of $80 set last week -- and the loss of anything more would mean "chaos" to the global economy.

Given that, "I'm saying taking Saddam out was essential," he said. But he added that he was not implying that the war was an oil grab.

But many on the left misinterpreted (or didn't understand) Greenspan's comments, leading Chris Matthews to come up with a rather ugly sentiment:

Should we put Exxon signs up over Arlington Cemetery and Mobil signs up there, like they have at baseball stadiums?"

Let's see if Osama bin Laden puts that in his next video. Thanks, Chris.

Posted by Ken McCracken · 17 September 2007 10:09 PM · Comments (6)

Quote Of The Day

"Everyone in Zimbabwe is a millionaire these days."

Posted by Ken McCracken · 17 September 2007 09:41 PM · Comments (1)

The Battle of Antietam

Today marks the anniversary of the Battle of Antietam, which is still the single-day highest death toll for Americans; higher than D-Day or September 11, 2001.

The battle was a tactical draw, but a Union victory that forced the Confederate forces off Northern soil. It marked the Union 'victory' President Lincoln was looking for to issue the Emancipation Proclamation.

Update: Rob Port added this to my crosspost over at Say Anything:

Battle of Antietam: 2,108 killed in one day (on just the Union side, 1,546 Confederates died as well). War in Iraq: 3,782 killed...in four and a half years. Point? By any historical measure, Iraq has been one of the least costly protracted military engagements in our nation's history in terms of lives lost. If this war truly is as "unsustainable" as some would have us believe we are in a lot bigger trouble than anything the middle east portends.

Posted by Ken McCracken · 17 September 2007 04:59 PM · Comments (7)

Erwin Chemerinsky: You Win Some, You Lose Some

chemerinsky.jpg
Erwin Chemerinsky

Erwin Chemerinsky, you may or may not know, is a prominent constitutional law scholar who was hired, then bizarrely fired, as the new dean for the University of California at Irvine, supposedly for being 'too liberal' to be Dean at the school in conservative Orange County. His detractors have not surfaced, as far as I know. Fellow con law profs Hugh Hewitt and Glenn Reynolds have been steadfastly supporting Chemerinsky in this odd ordeal.

Today, he was reinstated as the new dean of the law school, as he worked out a deal with Chancellor Michael Drake.

However, he lost in the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals representing Rachel Corrie's family against Caterpillar. Corrie's family claimed that Caterpillar provided Israel with tractors "it knew would be used in violation of international law." Rachel Corrie was killed when she got in the way of a Caterpillar tractor clearing an area of explosives. The case was dismissed because the tractors were bought by the federal government and transferred to Israel, and this decision was a foreign policy "political question" that the courts cannot second-guess.

For Chemerinsky, justice was served correctly to him in both instances.

Posted by Ken McCracken · 17 September 2007 04:04 PM · Comments (8)

The Left Calls The Tune: Now Dance, Democrats

Elizabeth Edwards' denouncement of the 'Betray Us' ad provide a window into the sick, sick soul of the left - causing at least one of them, Jane Hamsher, to reveal the madness behind the method:

First of all — I don’t care if John Kerry was eating live babies on TV, one week out from an election you do not repeat GOP talking points. Ever.

In regard to being asked about the Betray Us ad, Hamsher counsels Democrats as follows:

There are any number of ways you can answer that question well and none of them involve attacking MoveOn. They’re out there on the left so you can look “moderate.” They’re saying what needs to be said, opening the conversation up so John Edwards isn’t considered the left-wing fringe loon that nobody should listen to.

So . . . being a whacko leftwing blogger is all a ruse to make Democratic candidates 'look moderate?' Heh, not actually be moderate, but just look it? And if a GOP 'talking point' is something like 'eating live babies is bad . . . ' every Democrat is supposed to disagree with it regardless of how silly it makes that Democrat look?

Just because Jane Hamsher says so?

Hamsher would have Edwards stifle herself when honorable men and women in uniform are attacked, because apparently, the most evil thing one can do is agree with Republicans. Even when someone like Edwards knows, as a matter of deeply-held principles, that it is the right thing to do.

Posted by Ken McCracken · 15 September 2007 08:53 PM · Comments (7)

And Now A Shia Awakening, Too?

Fortunately for the coalition forces in Iraq, al-Qaeda is just as adept at shooting themselves in the foot as killing innocent people.

The assassination of Anbar tribal leader Risha has backfired on al-Qaeda big time, and now may even become a rallying point for Shi-ite leaders in their fight against terrorists:

Sheik Majid Tahir al-Magsousi, the leader of the Migasees tribe here in Wasit province, acknowledged tribal leaders have discussed creating a brigade of young men trained by the Americans to bolster local security as well as help patrol the border with Iran.

He also said last week's assassination of Abdul-Sattar Abu Risha, who spearheaded the Sunni uprising against al-Qaida in Anbar province, only made the Shiite tribal leaders more resolute.

"The death of Sheik Abu Risha will not thwart us," he said. "What matters to us is Iraq and its safety.

Posted by Ken McCracken · 15 September 2007 03:36 PM · Comments (3)

Propaganda: Your Job In Iraq Germany

Directed by Frank Capra, and written by Theodor Geisel - that's right, none other than Doctor Seuss. A very interesting look into the time capsule.

Posted by Ken McCracken · 14 September 2007 11:58 PM · Comments (10)

Sister Souljah, We Hardly Knew Yah

Elizabeth Edwards has criticized the MoveOn.org 'Betray Us' ad, saying "someone who’s spent their life in the military doesn’t deserve ‘General Betray Us.’”

It's great that she said it, and kudos to the Edwards campaign for being the first to distance itself from that despicable ad. But . . . Elizabeth Edwards isn't running for president - her husband is. Is the Edwards campaign trying to have its cake and eat it too, by creating a little deniability here in case MoveOn.org pushes back? Is this a real Sister Souljah moment, or just a trial balloon? Where is the candidate himself on this?

It would be nice to have the Edwards campaign put out feelers to see if the other candidates can then safely reject the ad as well, but you have to strike while the iron is hot. If Hillary later criticizes the ad, it will of course look like a calculated political maneuver on her part rather than a genuine abjuration of the ad.

Posted by Ken McCracken · 14 September 2007 11:06 PM · Comments (3)

Pundit Predictions Gone Horribly Wrong

 right.jpg

Er, yeah, whatever.

I predicted that an impending North Korean nuclear test was merely a bluff.

I predicted that the 2005 Indianapolis Colts would have an undefeated season (and on through to October, 2006!)

I predicted the Chicago Bears would win the Super Bowl this year, but that was really a pro forma prediction . . .

Here is some unintentional hilarity on my part, regarding the opening days of the Huffington Post:

I think HuffPo is a keeper. It has enough substance and serious viewpoints to keep it from being a timewaster, and they are pretty good at headlining interesting and timely news stories (though Drudge still has them beat).

I will be interested to see what the naysayers think a few weeks or months from now. HuffPo is far from perfect, but will people find it useful? I think so.

Good God, could I have BEEN any more wrong? I should have listened to Nikke Finke, who had Arianna's number before the HuffPo even started.

I have predicted in many various and far-ranging places in comments that Hillary Clinton would not receive the Democratic Party nomination in 2008. Still possible, but the chances of that happening are fading. Norman Hsu, I need you to Hsurvive!

Once in a great while however, I nail one down and get it perfectly right. I keep beating you guys over the head over this one, but I am just so damn proud of it.

Regarding last year's Israeli-Hezbollah war:

Bold Predictions: Hezboallah will go into hiding, avoid direct confrontation with the Israelis, and manage to survive on as a cancer in the region. The Lebanese army will not be successful in rooting them out. Israel will run out of targets to hit, will not get their soldier hostages back, and Israel will withdraw from Lebanon and Gaza, and the status quo ante will continue. Israel will not attack Syria at the behest of the United States, in order to prevent a wider conflict with Iran that will lead to stepped-up Iranian attacks on Iraq.

In short, the conflict will achieve nothing.

Well truth be told, I wish I were wrong about that one too.

Posted by Ken McCracken · 14 September 2007 08:57 AM · Comments (21)

Just A Few Thoughts

Stop using the term 'pro-war'. Unless, of course, you actually like war you sick SOB. Use the term 'pro-victory' instead.

Also, don't use the term 'jihadist' either. That is what the terrorists like to think of themselves as, they like the term and think it is admirable and honorable. Use the term 'Qutbist' instead. Here's why, according to the Militant Ideology Atlas:

Label the entire Jihadi Movement “Qutbism” in recognition that the Jihadis cite Sayyid Qutb more than any other modern author. Muslim opponents of the Jihadis (including mainstream Wahhabis) use this term to describe them, a designation Jihadis hate since it implies that they follow a human and are members of a deviant sect. Adherents of the movement consider “Qutbi” to be a negative label and would much rather be called Jihadi or Salafi. Calling the movement “Qutbism” would also remove potentially offensive words from the lexicon of public officials (like “Islamofascism”) and disassociate the movement from Islam.
Another good term to use is 'takfiri' to describe those who target innocent Muslims.

Takfir, 'the practice of declaring that an individual or a group previously considered Muslims are in fact kafir(s) (non-believers in God) or excommunication for those who reject Islam.'

This is not to be done lightly, as it is forbidden in the Koran:

O ye who believe! When ye go abroad in the cause of God, investigate carefully, and say not to any one who offers you a salutation: "Thou art none of a believer!" Coveting the perishable goods of this life: with God are profits and spoils abundant. Even thus were ye yourselves before, till God conferred on you His favours: Therefore carefully investigate. For God is well aware of all that ye do. (An-Nisa:94)

Take that, you takfiri-Qutbist jerks!

Posted by Ken McCracken · 14 September 2007 04:13 AM · Comments (4)

MRC: Huffington's House Of Horrors

Ugh.

When Arianna Huffington founded The Huffington Post on May 9, 2005, she opened her new Internet venture with a pledge, as quoted by Newsweek: “If you’re looking for the usual flame-throwing, name-calling, and simplistic attack dog rhetoric....don’t bother coming to The Huffington Post.”

Heh, no, you should go write for the Huffington Post in that case.

Go read the list of lowlights from the HuffPo to see just how wrong Arianna was about her own site. I'm telling ya, this site is even uglier than DailyKos. That's saying something.

They didn't even bother to include a blogger's call for a coup d'etat against the federal government.

Oh wait, that's right, it was only satire.

Posted by Ken McCracken · 14 September 2007 12:22 AM · Comments (0)

The Tipping Point Is Here

This was a terrible, awful week for Democrats. First, rather than escaping from the United States into hiding where his tale could not be told, Norman Hsu was caught on an Amtrak train in Colorado, and now the sordid story of his 'bundlings' for Hillary may yet be revealed. I wonder if Hillary got this huge sinking feeling in her stomach when she learned the news. Oh wait, she doesn't even know who this Hsu guy is, does she.

Unfortunately for Hillary it is an absolutely fascinating story ( how can the Hsu story not be fascinating when it includes a guy named 'Shrimp Boy'), not the least of which because poor Norman may have in fact tried to commit Hsuicide. I just did NOT see that one coming when I coined the term.

This story is now slowly etching away at her campaign, even though the press is doing the best job it can to impose a Swiftboat-like embargo on news relating to this Hillarity. Having the Hsu story fester under the radar screen gives it a certain allure and fascination it might not have had otherwise - just like the Swiftboat story. The real wiseguys are hip to the story, and if you are cool you'll be in on it too.

As fun as the ongoing Hsunanigans are, the only real story is General David Petraeus' testimony this week before Congress. This was indeed the final weight on the scale that caused The Tipping Point to arrive. It began earlier this year, when, of all things, Sunni tribal leaders allied with the coalition forces to wage war against their fellow Sunnis, the al-Qaeda terrorists. The Surge went into effect, and the real change of course that the Democrats had been demanding took hold (without the Democrats realizing it, of course).

Then came the O'Hanlon and Pollack article.

This little op-ed just popped the left right in their glass jaw. These were not neo-cons opining at National Review Online, no, this was in the hallowed sanctuary of the New York Times itself. The echo chamber now blared the ineffable heresy that the mission in Iraq might just work after all. Quelle horror! Say it's not so! If the New York Times says it, there is nowhere left to hide for Democrats who thought the MSM could be relied on to just repeat ad nauseum their cant of doom.

Next came General Petraeus' testimony. All the general had to do was just sit there mute, truth be told. Had he said nothing at all, the Democrats' own performance would have doomed them. ShoveOff.org's 'Betray Us' ad made the entire anti-war movement look childish, weightless, and (wilfully) ignorant of the facts on the ground in Iraq. It also stripped away the already transparent veneer that the left somehow 'supports the troops.' Brian de Palma has attacked the low ranking troops from below, while ShoveOff.org attacks the higher ranking troops from above. I think America now realizes that the left might not actually, really, 'support the troops'. In one thing the anti-war folks are right that this is a repeat of Vietnam - the antiwar effort there ended with grotesque attacks on the troops themselves, and once again it looks like they may end up calling them 'baby killers' yet again as they strip away their masks to reveal what they really are. As the left gets more desperate, bitter and angry while their failures mount, this will become a real possibility.

Their feckless leadership sure isn't helping. The Petraeus hearings began with Tom Lantos, who basically called Petraeus a liar before Petraeus had even opened his mouth. Talk about sticking to the script. We then had a grating interrogation from Loretta Sanchez, who seems to think we should be running the war via polls from the BBC. It ended with Hillary Clinton denouncing Petraeus, but refusing to denounce the Betray Us ad. Things would have no doubt gone better if Petraeus had slipped Norman Hsu a fat white envelope a month or two ago. But the whole thing revealed that the Democrats are not interested in finding facts, but preserving and expounding their narrative.

Petraeus, on the other hand, looked eminently serious, professional and candid.

Americans are getting a bit tired of their defeatist and cynical narrative, and so we have reached the tipping point. Not in Iraq - with proper support and enough time there, our troops are guaranteed victory. No, the tipping point came in the only place where al-Qaeda can defeat us: Washington D.C.

Update: The left just cannot help themselves. They are now repeating a completely unsourced, anonymous allegation that Admiral William Fallon called Petraeus " ...an ass-kissing little chickenshit." I normally would edit that remark, but I think in this case the full effect needs to be put out there.

Well, the left supports the Navy, anyway!

Posted by Ken McCracken · 13 September 2007 09:27 PM · Comments (4)

Quote Of The Day

"So let me get this straight... to Hillary, Norman Hsu gets the benefit of the doubt, but not General David Petraeus?"

Pretty much says it all about Hillary Clinton's integrity.

Via Instypundlit.

Posted by Ken McCracken · 12 September 2007 06:59 PM · Comments (4)

Wednesday Caption Contest: Part 121

This week's WILLisms.com Caption Contest photograph:

Rice Hoyer Pelosi.jpg

Here is the actual caption:
Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, left, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi of Calif., right, and House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer of Md., center, wait for President Bush to arrive for a ceremony marking the sixth anniversary of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, Tuesday, Sept. 11, 2007, on the South Lawn of the White House in Washington.
Oh right, as if that is all that is going on here! Give us a real caption, please!

Entries will remain open until 11:59 PM, Central Standard Time, Tuesday, September 18. Submit your captions in the comments section, or email at mccracken.ken@gmail.com.

Last week's photo:

rove wrap.jpg

Winners from last week:

1. Assistant Village Idiot:

Remember boys, always wrap your important machinery in plastic, if you catch my drift.

2. Zsa Zsa:

Karl Rove loves to rap...

3. dennis:

That Jocelyn Elders has gone too far this time!

Give me captions, or give me death! Enter today!

Posted by Ken McCracken · 12 September 2007 03:17 PM · Comments (22)

AP: Returning Hsu Money Makes Hillary an Ethical Hero

Here is an Orwellian news tale from the AP, in which Hillary being forced to return $850,000 of tainted campaign money shows how much integrity she has: Clinton response to disgraced fundraiser sets new standard for campaigns.

This is not a new standard, this is the same old standard for the Clintons. It would only have been a new standard if Hillary had actually refused money from one of her sleazoid friends in the first place before getting caught.

(h/t El Rushbo)

Posted by Ken McCracken · 12 September 2007 12:35 PM · Comments (5)

September 11, 2001 - A Day That Lives In Infamy

wtc.jpg

The terrorists attacked New York City because it is the anti-Mecca, the embodiment of absolutely everything they hate and loathe. It is a city of freedoms: religious, artistic, economic, and political. Differences are the foundation blocks of the community. It is where gays and lesbians found their voice. It is where Jews came to live in peace. Social restraints are simply overwhelmed by the size and dynamism of this genius city, and it is a fertile place for the mind to grow. Thus, it is anathema and frightening to the death cult of radical Islam that thinks we should retreat to the seventh century.

The dark ages mindset of the jihadists, in all their provincial and superstitious ignorance, saw New York as an economic colossus and twin to the military colossus of Washington D.C. Take out the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, they thought, and the financial, political and military might of the United States will collapse. I think bin Laden and his al-Qaeda minions were surprised to see that, quite the contrary, the attacks on 9/11 simply awakened a sleeping giant. The strength of our country is weaved into its people and character - there is no central locus to attack that can destroy it.

Terrorist attacks can shake the foundations of our biggest buildings, but they cannot touch the foundation of America. These acts shatter steel, but they cannot dent the steel of American resolve. - George W. Bush

Reposted from September 11, 2006

Posted by Ken McCracken · 11 September 2007 01:44 AM · Comments (85)

Even John Kerry Annoyed By 'Betray Us' Ad

Via HotAir we find that John Kerry, incredibly, is criticizing MoveOn's ridiculous 'Betray Us' ad. Kerry called the ad "over the top" [ed. - ya think?] and “I don’t like any kind of characterizations in our politics that call into question any active duty, distinguished general . . . who I think under any circumstances serves with the best interests of our country.”

When you've lost Waffles, you know you're in trouble.

Posted by Ken McCracken · 10 September 2007 06:29 PM · Comments (1)

Should We Believe Petraeus . . . Or MoveOn.org?

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Here is the text of the execrable MoveOn.org ad that slanders General David Petraeus, on the day he testifies before Congress:

"General Petraeus is a military man constantly at war with the facts. In 2004, just before the election, he said there was “tangible progress” in Iraq and that “Iraqi leaders are stepping forward.” And last week Petraeus, the architect of the escalation of troops in Iraq, said, “We say we have achieved progress, and we are obviously going to do everything we can to build on that progress.”

Every independent report on the ground situation in Iraq shows that the surge strategy has failed. Yet the General claims a reduction in violence. That’s because, according to the New York Times, the Pentagon has adopted a bizarre formula for keeping tabs on violence. For example, deaths by car bombs don’t count. The Washington Post reported that assassinations only count if you’re shot in the back of the head — not the front. According to the Associated
Press, there have been more civilian deaths and more American soldier deaths in the past three months than in any other summer we’ve been there. We’ll hear of neighborhoods where violence has decreased. But we won’t hear that those neighborhoods have been ethnically cleansed.

Most importantly, General Petraeus will not admit what everyone knows: Iraq is mired in an unwinnable religious civil war. We may hear of a plan to withdraw a few thousand American troops. But we won’t hear what Americans are desperate to hear: a timetable for withdrawing all our troops. General Petraeus has actually said American troops will need to stay in Iraq for as long as ten years.

Today, before Congress and before the American people, General Petraeus is likely to become General Betray Us."

Go and read David Petraeus' op-ed piece from 2004 in which he states we have made 'tangible progress' in Iraq. The general lays out a lot of specifics that MoveOn.org does not, and cannot, challenge. Petraeus was not saying that things were all rosy in Iraq - he was simply laying out some of our successes there.

That does not put him 'at war with the facts' as MoveOn hopes you will believe - that just puts him at odds with MoveOn's radical creed that no progress of any kind is possible, ever, in Iraq, and that if you state otherwise, you are a liar and a traitor. This is a superstitious belief among the anti-war crowd, not an actual investigation of facts.

As for the surge strategy failing, well, MoveOn.org is completely invested in that narrative, but of course it is completely wrong. Anbar province has been pacified. Baquba has been pacified. As for casualties among our troops . . . the strategy is called The Surge, with troops pouring in to pacify the country (Baghdad specifically). It was expected to raise casualty rates, and it has, but not to the extent predicted.

More:

MoveOn.org Calls Petraeus a Traitor - Pete Hegseth, Weekly Standard.

Has MoveOn Betrayed the Democratic Party? - Byron York, NRO.

"A general who "betrays us" is a traitor, like Benedict Arnold. Now that it's OK to question people's patriotism, can we start with MoveOn?" says John Hinderacker.

Update: Reporting to Congress by General David Petraeus.

Update: Confederate Yankee informs us that the New York Times gave MoveOn.org a hefty 61% discount on the ad.

Posted by Ken McCracken · 10 September 2007 03:01 PM · Comments (11)

Keep Despair Alive!

One of the articles of faith for those pining for America's defeat in Iraq is that the success of the tribal awakening movement in Anbar province cannot possibly, ever, be reproduced anywhere else in Iraq.

We should believe this, I suppose, because every leftist who starts blogging is instantly granted divine insight into the complexities of Iraqi politics, thousands of miles away. You know, the same people who have been telling us we have already lost in Iraq.

Well lo and behold, perhaps the Juan Cole wannabes don't know a damn thing about Iraq:

The tribal movement begun in Anbar has spread throughout central Iraq, as thousands of Sunnis have either volunteered to join the Iraqi Security Forces or formed local defense groups under Iraqi government and coalition auspices. These "concerned citizens" groups springing up throughout central Iraq have not been previously observed on this scale in the country. They permit U.S. and Iraqi forces to hold territory they have cleared more effectively. The volunteers who make up these groups, recruited and deployed in their own neighborhoods, have incentives to protect their families and communities. They are not independent militias, however. They are partnered with Iraqi Security Forces and coalition forces.

The Baqubah Guardians, one such group, recently helped the Iraqi police in that city fight off al Qaeda insurgents until coalition helicopters arrived. The Taji Neighborhood Watch association searched hundreds of homes for weapons caches. Iraq has hitherto lacked a local policing initiative, relying instead on national and regional models. The concerned-citizen groups are filling this gap while the U.S. and the Iraqi governments work to expand and improve the Iraqi Security Forces that many of these volunteers hope to join.

I am sure the defeatocrats will explain this away with all the expert authority they have displayed thus far. They need to. They have bet the whole farm on defeat, and so they need to chant to themselves "keep despair alive!"

Posted by Ken McCracken · 9 September 2007 01:07 PM · Comments (5)

You Haven't Earned The Right To Be 'War-Weary'

In its ongoing effort to demoralize you and tell you how you should feel, so that we can have defeat and a proper humiliation of America, the Washington Post informs us that Americans are 'war-weary'.

Well that is impossible. Sorry, seeing the same images of stuff blowing up in Iraq does not give you the right to claim you are 'war-weary.'

You aren't there, you aren't fighting. The guys in Iraq and Afghanistan are the ones who can claim to be war-weary, not you.

You are not making sacrifices for this war, you are not doing without. There are no scrap metal drives, there is no rationing, there are no shortages, there are no war bonds.

War effort? What war effort?

America is at the Mall.jpg

Unless you are in the military or are related to someone who is, there is no war. Other than those hurt or killed and their loved ones, America is not paying a price.

Stop your whining.

Posted by Ken McCracken · 8 September 2007 10:46 AM · Comments (13)

Your Daily Triviality

What is the Thach Weave?

Posted by Ken McCracken · 7 September 2007 09:33 PM · Comments (19)

Next You'll Be Telling Me They Ban Chess Too

John Hinderacker is rightly perplexed to find that "seventeen of Britain’s 26 Islamic seminaries are run by Deobandis" - the Deobandi being a Sunni Islamic revivalist movement from which the Taliban were born, and that these seminaries outlaw chess.

" . . . but haven't Muslims been playing chess for centuries?" he asks. Chess is a Persian invention or an Indian invention, depending upon whom you ask.

Surprising, but not only the Deobandi ban chess. Our ally in Iraq Grand Ayatollah Sayyid Ali Husaini al-Sistani has this Q&A about chess on his surprisingly cool website:

Question: What is the ruling on playing chess by using the customary pieces? Is the ruling any different in the case where the game is played by computer which employs symbols and shapes instead of the customary pieces?

Answer: Playing it (chess) is absolutely forbidden even without placing a bet. And there is no difference in this, whether it is (played) with customary pieces or by computer.

Wow, that is a pretty low threshold of entertainment to ban right there. I guess the booze and the hookers are right out, then? Banning chess alone would be a deal breaker if I were to ever consider becoming a Muslim. I mean, this is just outlawing fun as a kind of prank - just to make life less pleasant for people just because you have the power to do so.

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No chess hotties? Dealbreaker.

Posted by Ken McCracken · 7 September 2007 07:57 PM · Comments (50)

Do You Really Want Osama On Your Team?

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Osama bin Laden's new video premiered today, disappointing many who'd hoped he'd found a new job shoveling coal for Satan. That will just have to wait, I suppose.

Meanwhile, Noam Chomsky must just be so proud that Osama has tapped him as one of the West's greatest intellectual lights. Okay, so it isn't quite getting the Order of Lenin pinned on your chest by Stalin himself, but still it's pretty impressive. Chomsky is now in Osama's league! Or is it the other way around?

Sorry for the snark here, but really, this is a bit much. Is there no limit to the impoverishment of the left? Will it disturb them to find that a mass murdering psychopath has appropriated their agenda and rhetoric in turnkey fashion as a weapon against democracy? Well, hasn't that in fact been the history of the left, beginning with Lenin, and leading to Stalin, Mao, Pol Pot and Kim Jong-Il? It would only be surprising if the left actually did disavow Osama in large numbers. Self-respecting leftists should openly, publicly state that they are not on Osama's side . . . because the rest of us could be getting confused about this ever blurrier line between dissent and disloyalty.

Posted by Ken McCracken · 7 September 2007 06:03 PM · Comments (134)

Forced Feedings Are Exactly Like A Crushed Skull

According to the genius doctors protesting the treatment of Gitmo hunger strikers, that is. In an oddly repetitive news article/press release, we find that some doctors believe that "there are strong parallels between the Biko case and the ongoing role of US military doctors in Guantanamo Bay and the war on terror."

No, there are only 'strong parallels' here if you are a leftist with an agenda. Steven Biko was a dissident in South Africa back when it was still an apartheid state, who was arrested at a roadblock. He received serious head injuries from the police, and died soon thereafter. How is this at all like the treatment the detainees at Guantanamo Bay are receiving? Are the doctors claiming that the soldiers at Gitmo deliver serious head blows to the prisoners there? Are they claiming that detainees are being murdered there? Just what proof do they have that anything remotely like Biko's treatment is occurring?

The doctors then complain that the military doctors at Gitmo are not being brought up on charges for - get this - force feeding hunger strikers. Don't you like the little Catch-22 at play here? These very same doctors would be complaining the loudest if the military just let the hunger strikes take their course.

Posted by Ken McCracken · 7 September 2007 05:17 PM · Comments (3)

More Nukes!

Al Gore and John Edwards need not fear about how to power their energy-guzzling homes: 29 new nuclear reactors are expected to be built in the U.S., mostly in the South, as early as three years from now.

The Nuclear Regulatory Commission has created an Office of New Reactors, which is expected to have applicants for new nuclear construction banging down their door as early as October 1 (the start of the federal fiscal year). The "new fast-tracked combined construction and operating license applications" that will be available, and new modular construction techniques could mean reactors built in as little as 36 months.

The reactors will be safer too: "they will have multiple independent systems to cool reactor cores in an emergency, multiple backup power systems, digital control rooms and more passive systems to open and close valves automatically by gravity or water flow, to reduce human error."

So what say you, chickengreens? Are you going to oppose this in simple kneejerk fashion, because of liberal dogma that says all things nuclear are always bad, all the time? Or have you awakened to the fact that, actually, you need electricity to power those obscenely large houses you so dearly love? Isn't reducing your carbon footprint an ecstatic religious experience we are all supposed try and attain?

Well, here it is. Don't go all squishy on us now. And don't tell us we should all just ride bicycles. You don't.

Posted by Ken McCracken · 7 September 2007 10:03 AM · Comments (191)

Quote Of The Day

Via Say Anything we find this post by Jon Henke about Keith Olbermann, who once channeled Edward R. Murrow thusly:

"We must not confuse dissent with disloyalty."

Too bad far too many on the left do exactly that.

Posted by Ken McCracken · 6 September 2007 09:07 PM · Comments (390)

More Hsu-nanigans

Norman Hsu jumps bail (yet again). Never saw that one coming. People are wondering if he hasn't left the country for, say, Hong Kong, which is where he fled last time he jumped bail. Wouldn't there be a record of his exit somewhere if that were so?

Update: it appears Hsu has been captured in Colorado. (h/t Allahpundit)

Here is a backgrounder on Chinagate, the Idiot's Guide to Chinagate, that explains the largely-ignored Clinton scandal that started it all, and rightly leads folks to question if Hsu isn't the sequel. Great money quote - '"We like your president. We want to see him re-elected," former Chinese intelligence chief Gen. Ji Shengde told Chinagate bagman Johnny Chung.'

Major Hillary supporter Mayor Samuel Rivera of Passaic, New Jersey, got caught with 10 other people in an FBI corruption sting. Rivera is accused of steering insurance contracts. Corruption in New Jersey -- never saw that one coming either.

Plus: have you seen this man?

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Yet another Hillary donor gone into hiding.

Do you really want four years of this kind of nonsense, day in, day out? Vote Hillary!

Posted by Ken McCracken · 6 September 2007 08:34 PM · Comments (168)

The Sails Of Charon

Uli Roth's solo here is something of a holy grail for metalhead guitarists: if you can play it, man, you've got chops. Maybe the best metal solo ever, up there with Over the Mountain in my book.

 

Why couldn't the Scorpions have done more of this stuff than that euro wussmetal they slogged for so long?

Posted by Ken McCracken · 6 September 2007 06:19 PM · Comments (5)

Wednesday Caption Contest: Part 120

This week's WILLisms.com Caption Contest photograph:

rove wrap.jpg

Here is the actual caption:
Outgoing White House Deputy Chief of Staff Karl Rove (background) enlists the help of staffers' children in pulling plastic wrap off his Jaguar car, placed there as a practical joke, at a parking lot on the White House grounds in Washington, August 29, 2007. Rove had just returned to Washington from a trip with U.S. President George W. Bush to the areas hit in 2005 by Hurricane Katrina.
Come on, you know there's more going on than this. Give us a better caption, please!

Entries will remain open until 11:59 PM, Central Standard Time, Tuesday, September 11. Submit your captions in the comments section, or email at mccracken.ken@gmail.com.

Last week's photo:

burned man.jpg

Winners from last week:

1. Wyatt Earp :

Disenfranchised minorities finally realize their dream of "Sticking it to The Man."

2. Julie:

They knew the most important step in building the body around the skeleton was to get the boobs right first.

3. Cullen:

And thus ends Tim Burtons' efforts to shoot in 100 percent scale.

When captioning is outlawed, only outlaws will caption. Enter today!

Posted by Ken McCracken · 5 September 2007 08:44 PM · Comments (22)

Happy Happy, Joy Joy

Here is a map showing the United States' lead in the one statistic that matters most of all:

the+global+projection+of+subjective+well-being.bmp.jpg

This map has been around for a little while, but hopefully it is new to you, the way it was new to me.

(h/t Inspire, Move & Touch)

Posted by Ken McCracken · 4 September 2007 11:14 AM · Comments (0)

Quote Of The Day: Hell Freezing Over Edition

Wow, I completely agree with Markos Moulitsas:

"Skepticism is a virtue."

Posted by Ken McCracken · 3 September 2007 08:14 PM · Comments (4)

Did Hillary Commit Hsu-icide?

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Hillary Clinton with some guy.

Via Gateway Pundit we find that generous Democratic contributor and 'hillraiser' Norman Hsu may have been a close associate of China missile trader Bernard Schwartz. Oh, this is getting bad for Her Annointed Highness. This is dredging up all the unpleasant things people wanted to forget about Hillary, and puts the Clinton sleaze factor back into play. Norman Hsu may not have committed (another) crime with his byzantine donation practices, but it does go to prove that the Clintons have never fixed their faulty scumbag detectors. The receiving line of sleazoids greeting the Clintons seems to have no end.

For what it's worth, this is what WorldNetDaily has to say about this:

Last November, Schwartz and Hsu chaired a New School banquet at the Mandarin Oriental in New York which featured Sen. Clinton as keynote speaker. Clinton steered a $1 million federal grant to the college.

More recently, Schwartz and Hsu (pronounced shoo) appeared together at the New York Yacht Club for Democratic Rep. Patrick Kennedy's 40th birthday bash...

WND reporting often seems hysterical (not in a funny ha ha way) but they do offer this screen shot:

newschool.jpg

Is there more than just this? Stay tuned as this story goes drip, drip, drip along.

Update: Drip, drip indeed. There are now two more very questionable donors to the Hillary campaign being investigated: Sant S. Chantwal and Tendo Oto. Commenter Frieda reminds us about fugitive contributor Abdul Rehman Jinnah. Why, it is turning into a veritable United Nations of corruption over at Camp Hillary.

Question: When is the mainstream media going to step up and fulfill its duty to defend Hillary against these scurrilous rightwing charges? Just when are we going to see the interlocking charts of donors contributing to those making these accusations? When are the criminal backgrounds of these alleged donors going to be debunked and placed in their proper context? We aren't going to let Hillary get swiftboated on this, are we?

Just where the hell are Rahm Emmanuel and James Carville??!??!1??

Answer: Are you kidding? As Jay Tea points out, these scandals have not even penetrated the thick forehead cocoon armor plating of the left wing yet.

Posted by Ken McCracken · 3 September 2007 04:17 PM · Comments (9)

Hugh Hewitt Interviews RON PAUL!!!1!!11!!

Well I gotta say, this little interview packs more substance than an entire Democratic debate:

 

In case you were wondering, Letters of Marque and Reprisal are a power from Article I, sec. 8 of the Constitution allowing Congress to put a bounty on someone's head (it was originally used to authorize privateers/pirates, whatever). Here is Wikipedia's blurb on it re: Ron Paul -

The issue of Marque and Reprisal was raised before Congress by Rep. Ron Paul of Texas after the September 11, 2001 attacks[2], and again on July 21, 2007. Paul, defining the attacks as an act of "air piracy," introduced the Marque and Reprisal Act of 2001, which would have granted the president the authority to use Letters of Marque and Reprisal against the specific terrorists, instead of warring against a foreign state. Paul compared the terrorists to pirates in that they are difficult to fight by traditional military means.

My guess is that Paul brings this up because the rewards already being offered for Osama bin Laden, et.al., come from the executive branch, and not the legislative branch, which alone seems to have the enumerated power to do so. But putting a reward on someone's head seems to be a far different thing than the sort of semi-piracy envisioned by the Framers. Is Ron Paul arguing that, in a time of war, the President does not have the power to put out a bounty on bona fide enemies of the United States? I hope not - that would be another example of the over-fetishizing of the Constitution that libertarians are so famous for.

Posted by Ken McCracken · 3 September 2007 03:41 PM · Comments (36)

Has Labor Day Outlived Its Usefulness?

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Today is Labor Day? Could have fooled me. I did all the shopping I need to do today, picked up some coffee, and even went banking. Yes, my bank was open, those unpatriotic rats!

My confrere Jay Tea is complaining that this holiday interfered with his ability to get some errands done. Maybe they have more respect for the holiday in New Hampshire than they do here in Illinois. Ironic, considering that Chicago was where the seed of the holiday was planted.

Rob Port reminds us that this holiday was inaugurated by Grover Cleveland to placate the fellow travelers of murderous anarchists who killed police with a bomb during the Chicago Haymarket riot in 1886. One might even be tempted to label them 'terrorists'. The notorious May Day parades where the Soviet Union displayed the weapons of war used to keep millions in slavery traces its ancestry to this event.

So, here's to America's proud history of union thuggery! That is one way of looking at it.

P.S. Ooops! I forgot the real reason why we still have Labor Day. We aren't supposed to wear white after today! I'll just have to put away those white Hanes 50/50 tees I just bought. Shame.

P.P.S. Here's a little tidbit about Congress covering up union crimes:

As the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review reports, nearly 800 convictions in six years -- a staggering number -- have occurred as a result of audits and investigations of labor unions conducted by the U.S. Department of Labor's Office of Labor-Management Standards. So how does the new Congress respond? By cutting its $47.7 million budget!
Unions. Classy.

Posted by Ken McCracken · 3 September 2007 12:49 PM · Comments (0)