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Assassination masturbation 22 February 2008

Posted by marisacat in 2008 Election, Democrats, Inconvenient Voice of the Voter, U.S. Senate, WAR!.

One of the reasons I grit my teeth over all the comparisons is … assassination.  Careful what you yearn for… Which is not to say America is not loaded with nutters, crazies, supremacists, racists, etc., of all sorts.  Some highly weaponised.

We have prayer circles out here in CA about it… I caught a long time local activist, Eve Patterson, last week on a PBS news program.  She seemed a little too pleased by the threat of it all, that a chosen one risks death…. Just my harsh observation. Distasteful as well as unwise, imo.

Probably my first and last assassination slurp diary.  And a good one to kiss the game off with.  It hits, along with the thread, all the points.  (And then some.  Don’t miss the messy minuet between denali and the sock puppet, VertheVik.)

My view, the right wing, the Eternal Government, has no desire for any more high profile martyrs on the so called Left of the Aisle. None.  They have highly effective methods of political assassination and very much enjoy employing those strategies.  No decades of adoration.

To really risk state assassination one would have to oppose war, seek to broadly organise the disenfranchised, organise the newly disenfranchised.  Lead a Poor Peoples’ March.

That sort of thing.

I am just listening to Samantha Powers, surely some sort of queen of the modern, soft faced war… she is on with Rose.  To hawk her new book on Sergio de Mello.  She says early on he was described as a cross between James Bond and RFK.

Be careful what you wish for.  She closes saying we will, for a long time, be dealing with “broken people in broken places”.

Her fondest hope, I do believe, is just that.  In our position as Gawd, of course.  No matter what face we wear.


A couple of the last comments from the previous thread:


More news from Serbia:

The British Embassy in Belgrade came under attack as protests against Kosovan independence swept the Serbian capital, Foreign Secretary David Miliband said.

Damage to the building was “limited” and embassy staff were safe, Mr Miliband said.

The United States Embassy was torched by Serb rioters and a charred body was found after the attack.

Reportedly one of the protesters. Not confirmed yet.

Feb 22, 12:57 AM



Turkey has invaded Iraqi Kurdistan:

Turkish troops have launched a ground incursion across the border into Iraq in pursuit of separatist Kurdish rebels, the military said Friday — a move that dramatically escalates Turkey’s conflict with the militants.

It is the first confirmed ground operation by the Turkish military into Iraq since the U.S.-led invasion that toppled Saddam Hussein. It also raised concerns that it could trigger a wider conflict with the U.S.-backed Iraqi Kurds, despite Turkish assurances that its only target was the Kurdistan Workers Party, or PKK.

The ground operation started after Turkish warplanes and artillery bombed suspected rebel targets on Thursday, the military said on its Web site. The ground incursion was backed by the Air Force, the statement said.

Turkey has conducted air raids against the PKK guerrillas in northern Iraq since December, with the help of U.S. intelligence, and it has periodically carried out so-called ”hot pursuits” in which small units sometimes spend only a few hours inside Iraq.

The announcement of a cross-border, ground incursion of a type that Turkey carried out before the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq in 2003 was a major development in the conflict, which started in 1984 and has claimed as many as 40,000 lives.

The Kurdish militants are fighting for autonomy in Turkey’s predominantly Kurdish southeast, and have carried out attacks on Turkish targets from bases in northern Iraq. The U.S. and the European Union consider the PKK a terrorist organization.

”The Turkish Armed Forces, which values Iraq’s territorial integrity and its stability, will return as soon as planned goals are achieved,” the military said. ”The executed operation will prevent the region from being a permanent and safe base for the terrorists and will contribute to Iraq’s stability and internal peace.”

Private NTV television said 10,000 troops were taking part in the offensive and had penetrated six miles into Iraq.

Of course, the MSM insists on using the Nixonian “incursion.”

Things seem to be spinning out of control.

Feb 22, 3:19 AM —




1. Hair Club for Men - 22 February 2008

My view, the right wing, the Eternal Government, has no desire for any more high profile martyrs on the so called Left of the Aisle. None. They have highly effective methods of political assassination and very much enjoy employing those strategies. No decades of adoration.

They had all the same things in the 60s. Google the name “Joe Alsop”. J Edgar Hoover had photos of him engaged in gay sex in Moscow so whenever the FBI needed a “Martin Luther King is a communist” article in the press, they could just drop the article by and he’d publish it under his name.

The difference I think now is the PR/brainwashing infrastructure. They have a whole panoply of cable news outlets/talk radio/conservative/liberal blogs that can turn anything into a discussion of the trivial.

Even if Obama were talking about substantive issues the dialog in the media would still be about plagiarism, secret trips to the mosque, Michelle Obama’s “slip”, and youthful drug addiction.

2. Hair Club for Men - 22 February 2008

catnip:More news from Serbia:

If after 8 years of scare stories about the evil Muslims wind up turning into nothing and the world ends in a nuclear war between Russia and the USA over the Balkans (not like any major wars have ever started there before) I’ll die in flames as NYC is vaporized, laughing my ass off.

3. marisacat - 22 February 2008

yes I know about Joe Alsop… not likely to be a decades long martyr for the left of the dial.

There has always been political take down. I am nto naive, nothing is new.

4. marisacat - 22 February 2008

The most substantive thing I have read from Obama, from the realm outside his rally gibberish, was a link I posted here a few weeks ago.

NYT editorial board talked to both Edwards and Obama about war issues (I linked to both interviews).

Obama is for war. he will do fine.

5. Intermittent Bystander - 22 February 2008

Whoops, didn’t see new thread.

Arizona (GOP) Congressman Rick Renzi indicted for conspiracy, money laundering, insurance fraud, wire fraud, and extortion. AP version here.

And here’s a freebie photo for Bowers the Googlebomber. (This one probably ain’t worth much anymore. . . .)

6. melvin - 22 February 2008

Unleash the academics! One hell of a load for a campaign to carry, from Horace Campbell guest comment in Black Commentator: Barack Obama, Fractals and Momentum in Politics

(not to mention Ubuntu, HRC as Sexual Decoy, and the kitchen sink)

Obama is not a revolutionary but he has been caught up in a revolutionary moment in world history. The electoral campaign of Obama is riding on a wave of peace and change desired by ordinary Americans. There are limitations to the electoral project insofar as the task of restructuring US society is a gigantic one that cannot be done overnight. Obama may not be the solution, but is a small step in the direction of making the break with the old binary conceptions that dominated enlightenment thinking. It is the laws of unintended consequences that will emanate from this break that can lead to a new direction with the new positive, bottom up organizing for transformation to a democratic society where all can live in peace.

A clear understanding of the nature of US politics and the limitations of the structures of the in-built conservatism of the system means that Barrack Obama would only be trapped by this social system if those who are being drawn into the audacity of hope do not build their own political movement and political organization. It is only a bottom up movement that can prevent Barack Obama from becoming a tool for the Wall Street forces. Self mobilization, self organization and emancipatory ideas will create new spaces so that the political space will be expanded beyond the media, the lobbyists and the ritual spaces of the White House, Congress and the Senate Chambers. Safe and clean neighborhoods, children who are reared to respect all human beings and a society that support repair of the planet earth awaits these new self organizing forces.

7. Intermittent Bystander - 22 February 2008
8. melvin - 22 February 2008

7 — A tragedy in itself. Can’t help wonder if it will plant the idea that her campaign is “snakebit.”

9. NYCO - 22 February 2008

The fundamental assumption, which may be in error, is that “America” is the logical and necessary vessel for all of this revolutionary cometogetherness/ubuntu/solidarity/whatever.

That’s the central fancy – America as God’s (or humanity’s) chosen vessel for ultimate perfection. But isn’t it all just about new rhetoric to feed American exceptionalism? Will America be making war on the world in the name of “ubuntu”? If “ubuntu” develops locally in a manner that defies federal (and Wall Street) authority, won’t it still be crushed?

How can you really turn “ubuntu” into a government program… or a presidential administration, for that matter? That seems to be the central premise of the Obama campaign/movement; where is that leading?

10. Intermittent Bystander - 22 February 2008

“Snakebit” – is that a tejano expression for “cursed”?

BTW – Seems to me that if Clinton became the nominee, she’d be as much a target for gun-toting crazies as Obama.

11. melvin - 22 February 2008

9–His whole transformative quantum leap idea leaves Kucinich looking like the dull realist. Just who does he think BO will have as advisors? NSA? DoD, which of course he wants to expand? It’s all about the tremendous inertia.

12. melvin - 22 February 2008

Meant to add, I really do like the notion of BO accidentally midwifing a movement beyond his control. As an idea.

13. JJB - 22 February 2008

Actually, neither the FBI nor the CIA needed to blackmail Joe Alsop to do their bidding. And his sex life wasn’t a secret either, he was as out of the closet as a gay man could be in those years (30s through the pre-Stonewall 60s). His brother and for many years his partner in a syndicated column, Stewart Alsop, was almost certainly a CIA agent in the guise of a journalist. Joe would have been too, but for his sexual preferences. While not an agent like his brother, he was most definitely an asset. The KGB tried to blackmail him sometime during the 1950s, and he refused to do what they wanted. That’s the official story anyway, the truth I’m sure is far more murky.

Speaking of murky, what’s up with Turkey?

Turkey’s military said Friday it had sent troops into northern Iraq on Thursday night, in a limited operation to weaken Kurdish militants there.

The Turkish military announced the operation on its Web site on Friday, but Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan later played it down, describing the mission as “limited” in size and emphasizing that the soldiers would return to Turkey “in the shortest possible time.”

Reports of the numbers of troops varied. Reuters cited Turkey’s foreign minister and an unnamed American official in Baghdad as saying that only a few hundred had been deployed, while Turkish television reported that around 10,000 troops had been deployed.

In Baghdad, Rear Admiral Gregg Smith described the incursion as “an operation of limited duration to specifically target P.K.K. terrorists in that region.”

I doubt they’d bother making this kind of announcement if only a few hundred troops had been sent across the border, but who knows? Maybe this is intended mostly for domestic consumption, they way we’d hurl missiles or drop bombs on Libya/Sudan/Afghanistan in the pre-9/11 years every time we wanted to Look Tough.

14. Intermittent Bystander - 22 February 2008

I think I’ve got one in moderation . . .

AP is reporting that Nader will be on MTP this Sunday, possibly to announce another presidential run.

15. marisacat - 22 February 2008

JJB and IB out of moderation…

Off to check Spam file…


16. melvin - 22 February 2008

10– I didn’t realize it was regional. Must be a southern thing.

17. marisacat - 22 February 2008

I see McCain, in counterpoint to Obama last night, is referring ot Cuba as “the imprisoned island”.

………long GE coming up………

18. marisacat - 22 February 2008

spiegel has a post up on the EU tensions over Kosovo…

Only a few hours later, Europe’s lack of unanimity over recognizing Kosovo revealed what a heterogeneous entity Europe still is.

It also raises the question of whether such a divided Europe will ever be capable of conducting an effective joint common foreign policy. Serbia withdrew its ambassadors from Germany and Austria Wednesday, after Berlin and Vienna recognized Kosovo as an independent nation. Then, on Thursday, Serbian protesters rioted in Belgrade, setting fire to the US Embassy (more…).

While Denmark, Austria, France and Great Britain hold similar positions on Kosovo’s independence, the EU countries that have minority conflicts of their own are opposed to Kosovo’s secession from Serbia. They fear that their separatist groups could choose to emulate developments in the Balkans.

19. bayprairie - 22 February 2008

“Snakebit” – is that a tejano expression for “cursed”?

yeah, cursed, or bad luck. a very unpleasant, unexpected, occurrence during one’s normal routine.

i didn’t realize it was regional either. i can safely say its commonly used in the southwest.

20. Intermittent Bystander - 22 February 2008

16 – Makes sense.

The Independent‘s Iraq correspondent Patrick Cockburn was on Fresh Air last night, with some rational (though inherently lugubrious) remarks on the so-called success of the so-called surge. He sounded a little weary of having to belabor the obvious facts while reciting lifestyle conditions for everyday Iraqis.

Apparently Cockburn has a book on Muqtada A-Sadr coming out in April.

21. JJB - 22 February 2008

IB, no. 14,

AP is reporting that Nader will be on MTP this Sunday, possibly to announce another presidential run.

Can’t you just feel the excitement?

Anyway, didn’t he do this a couple of weeks ago (on what TV show I can’t remember) where he made that heart-rending plea for volunteer pro-bono lawyers to help him get on the ballot? Memo to Ralph: Start organizing this sort of thing more than 9 months before the general election, and you probably won’t need the lawyers.

22. Intermittent Bystander - 22 February 2008

JJB – He was on the CNN Sunday show right after the Dem debate where Blitzer got booed.

Hell hath no furrrrry like a Wolfie scorned. 🙂

23. marisacat - 22 February 2008


well I try to remember that politics is a dirty money driven business.

Schechter/News Dissector seems to be following a couple of lines, probably related to his work on the US debt crisis…

snip, Pritzker connection was talked about, but months ago and has receded:

But there is a story, now building steam about his finance chairman Penny Pritzker, who was the chairman of Superior bank that went bust and allegedly was in on the ground floor of the subprime scandal.

The New York Times has already reported that nearly half of the more than $5 million Obama raised for his 2004 Senate primary came from just 300 donors. The charmed circle of 300 included the Pritzker family, founders of the Hyatt Hotel chain. The Pritzkers donated $40,000 and Penny Pritzker is currently Obama’s national finance chairwoman. (Penny’s brother works for Hillary.)’

embedded links at NewsDissector. He’s messy about links, sometimes you have to remove extraneous “stuff” to get the URL.


Ok, the system is corrupt, has been for years, but this Pritzker banking connection could be a big scandal. The collapse of the Superior Bank led to the rip off of depositors and millions from the FDIC. It deserves scrutiny. The case has not been closed. Does it have an subprime connection? If so that might be bad for Obama because he is on record against predatory practices.

One of those investigating the issue is a controversial but skilled radio journalist, Dennis Bernstein of Berkeley’s KPFA. He told me this story is an eye-opener and came to me about it because of my film and writing on the economic collapse. He thinks it offers insight into the system, not just Obama.

Myself I think Obamamama will jsut offer consecrated hosts to his followers and move on. What the right manages to do with it… who knows. McC and wif have managed a strong push back on a messy but not-as-published-meaty-enough story. The indications from the Obama camp is that we don’t know yet what their push back (on anything from the right, or just from exposure) is. My own guess it will be delayed then a fumble then it arrives.

My own take on it is that the R machine over all, not just money making parts of it (those preferred HIllary for obvious reasons), were happy to run agaisnt either candidate. But that McCain is very pleased to run against Obama. From their viewpoint, the visuals and the stories work. I am saying, from THEIR viewpoint.

I can see McC holding it together or alternatively popping off and losing it. BIG POPCORN OPPORTUNITY.

24. Intermittent Bystander - 22 February 2008

Interesting article about the Pakistani election at the Christian Science Monitor: Islamic stronghold in Pakistan goes secular.

The religious parties that held 46 of the 96 provincial parliamentary seats won only nine this time. Moreover, they have been replaced by the secular Awami National Party (ANP).

It is an important development in the province nearest Pakistan’s tribal areas, known to host Al Qaeda and the Taliban and the new focus of US antiterror policy. The ANP is expected to marshal all the province’s resources – police, politics, and the law – against extremism, whereas the mullahs had refused even to condemn suicide attacks.

For this, Mr. Akbar gave them his vote. Yet he, like many others, says his vote was not a veto of Islamic politics. He wants a government that is fair and ethical, and he will vote for anyone to get it. That meant ousting President Pervez Musharraf’s allies – in this case, the mullahs loyal to him. “They wanted a vote in the name of Islam,” says Akbar, sipping tea by the roadside outside the Old City. “But it was not for Islam, it was for Islamabad,” the capital and seat of Musharraf’s government.


As a province, it cannot set military policy – that is the job of the National Assembly and the Army. Nor does it play a direct role in the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA), where militant warlords rule much of the territory; FATA policy is determined in Islamabad.

Yet the NWFP [North West Frontier Province] is the first bulwark against the spread of terrorism into the heart of Pakistan, and under the mullahs’ watch little was done to check it.

“Everyday you hear about a music store being bombed or such-and-such a place being attacked by the Taliban,” says Lateef Afridi, a member of the ANP’s central executive committee, explaining why he believes his party supplanted the coalition of Islamic parties known as the Muttahida Majlis-e-Amal (MMA). “That created a panic in the minds of the people,” he says. The ANP will be much better situated to deal with the threat, say experts.


Yet as a party founded on the principles of nonviolence, they are likely to use what influence they have against the military solutions supported by the US. “On a case-by-case basis, we will be talking to [the Taliban] to bring peace,” says Mr. Afridi. “We want peace in FATA because we are the same people [Pashtuns] – and if there is no peace there, there is no peace here.”

The notion of negotiation is ingrained in the Pashtun mind – a legacy of the jirgas, or councils, that have ruled Pashtun tribes for centuries – and it has great popular support here. The MMA’s mullahs ran afoul of public opinion by abandoning such principles, residents say.

Sweeping to power in 2002 on a wave of anti-American sentiment after the invasion of Afghanistan, they were not sincere in their efforts to infuse politics with the tenets of Islam, residents say. One perception is that they used politics to get rich.

In 2002, “they used to go out canvassing on bicycles,” says Ali Jan, pushing his shopping cart through the aisles of a Peshawar supermarket. “Now, they’re driving around in Land Cruisers.”

25. marisacat - 22 February 2008

I just got a Pelosi update email. Gee I am so favored, actually one of her constituents.

She refers, over and over, to the 110th as “The New Direction Congress”.

Whole lotta speed bumps in that forward movement.

26. marisacat - 22 February 2008


Democrats recognize that our current health care system falls significantly short of meeting the needs of our most vulnerable, and that we must develop a vision for improving the health of the American people. The New Direction Congress will continue these important conversations with professionals in public policy, academia, business, and medicine in order to develop a comprehensive plan to take our nation in a New Direction.

27. Intermittent Bystander - 22 February 2008

The New Direction Congress will continue these important conversations with professionals in public policy

Naturally, the actual public will be expected to continue to suffer, STFU, and/or die. Quietly, please.

Speaking of snipers . . . Clinton People Send Out O’Bomber Meme, a diary by SmileySam, links to an ABC Blotter story by Justin Rood: Clinton, Obama Spar on Ties to Radicals. Talkin’ former Weather Underground members’ donations to O vs. pardons from Bill, etc.

Tsk tsk.

28. marisacat - 22 February 2008

well the Ayers Bernadine Dorhn has been kicking around, in little dribs and drabs for a while.

Now it goes more high profile. According to the latest post at Politico, both Ayers and Obama are refusing comment.

I have no problem, at all, with any of it. They seem to be Hyde Park fixtures… But I am reminded of the after event report from Newsweek that poor hapless Edwards was reported to have nearly screamed when he learned that Kerry had met “with terrorists” in Paris in 70/71.

LOL I had no problem with that either (Kerry in paris)… but … I am nto America.

29. Intermittent Bystander - 22 February 2008

I was tsking Singer, the Clinton spokes-e-mailer, for chucking pebbles around in the glass conservatory.

30. lucid - 22 February 2008

Talkin’ former Weather Underground members’ donations to O vs. pardons from Bill, etc.

Always loved Bernadine Dohrn – the voice of the WU… She was one of the few in the recent Weather Underground Doc [which was quite good btw] who was unapologetic for the movement. WTF is she doing hanging out with Obama?

31. marisacat - 22 February 2008


oh i realised that…. 8)

32. marisacat - 22 February 2008

LOL.. from a flea out of Brazoria. Another one:

*[new] So I can’t use logic and concept to debate you? (4.50 / 2)

if we (that damn Royal We again!) dare to ask you a question about your own words ….
And you wondered why I compared your style of argument to that of a small child. This latest one reminds me of Marsicat … her style was to ‘reword the exact agrument with a superior tone like I am to stupid to understand’ just as you did, intended to flip the agruement of the person who disagreed with her.

She is one of the most unpopular people in the blogosphere, and probably has less credibility than Bush himself … but I just wanted to explain to you, why you remind me of Marsicat ….

by pinche tejano @ Fri Feb 22, 2008 at 12:58:33 PM PST
[ Parent | Respond to this Idiocy

much revelation over there … as they partially come out of their “who I support” closets. I think they are claiming their “support” for Ron Paul (who has crawled back to the Father Land Party) affected McCain’s language.

One born every minute.

33. lucid - 22 February 2008

She is one of the most unpopular people in the blogosphere, and probably has less credibility than Bush himself

ROTFLMAO… the legend continues… All hail Mcat the elitist argument flipper!

34. marisacat - 22 February 2008

hmm fwiw:

Key McCain Ally Indicted


Ari Berman writes for The Nation:

“Another GOP congressman has been indicted. This time it’s Rick Renzi, indicted by a federal grand jury in Arizona today on charges of wire fraud, money laundering and extortion as part of a multimillion-dollar land deal that allegedly improperly benefited Renzi and his business partners. Renzi, a three-time representative from Arizona’s First Congressional District … also happens to be a close ally of Senator John McCain.”

35. marisacat - 22 February 2008



but will they spell my screen name right on the celebrity invites?

I am so concerned.

36. lucid - 22 February 2008

*[new] But do you have better T&A than her? (0.00 / 0)

by DavidByron @ Fri Feb 22, 2008 at 13:49:05 PM PST

Ah, the stomach flu always amuses… not.

37. marisacat - 22 February 2008

yeah… think David B got a couple off in that thread.

He is so at home there………….

38. marisacat - 22 February 2008

Samantha Powers v Jeremy Scahill on Democracy NOW! on Balkans, Kosovo …

… and of course they got on “whose murder is better”….

SCAHILL: […] But, you know, in response to some of what Samantha was saying, in the 1990s, the worst humanitarian crises in the world, certainly Rwanda and other African nations, certainly in Europe, but Iraq—I mean, where is the label of genocide for the US policy toward Iraq? It was Bill Clinton who initiated the longest sustained bombing campaign since Vietnam against Iraq under the guise of humanitarian intervention in the north and south of that country, the sanctions killing hundreds of thousands of people. I mean, we have had one of the greatest mass slaughters in history, in modern history, in Iraq, going from 1990 to the present, and yet everyone talks about this as though it’s not genocide, as though it’s not part of that bigger picture. Clinton selling weapons to the Turks to slaughter the Kurds—I mean, there were all sorts of horrific things happening in the world. And it’s the selectivity of US foreign policy that I think is really outrageous. It’s not that no one should do anything about it; it’s that the Iraqis—it’s sort of, you know, good victims, bad victims.

AMY GOODMAN: Samantha Power?

SAMANTHA POWER: Where does one start? I mean, I would just like to know—I guess Jeremy just asked—the question is, since you’ve spent so much time there, at the moment that we’re at now, what do we do, in fact? I mean, are you suggesting that then basically the Serbian—the Kosovars should become part of Serbia? I mean, I felt like we hit a stalemate, and something had to budge. There was going to be violence in Kosovo. And I, again, don’t mean to brush all the crimes of American foreign policy under the rug, and I’ve written extensively also about sanctions and the toll of sanctions and so forth in Iraq. But just to stick to this moment—

JEREMY SCAHILL: But is that genocide, according to you?

SAMANTHA POWER: No, but we can talk about that. I don’t think the Clinton administration set out to deliberately destroy the Iraqi people as such.

JEREMY SCAHILL: Oh, I totally disagree. But what Madeleine Albright said, it was worth the price, the hundreds of thousands of Iraqi victims of US policy.

On and on it goes… Reagan’s wars, Bush’s wars, Clinton’s wars, Bush’s wars… nearly were Kerry’s wars… soon to be Obama’s wars.

39. Hair Club for Men - 22 February 2008

Major white person anxiety going on at PFF.


Poor dears. How dare those poor people not smile more at rich Amerikkans when they come to visit.

40. Hair Club for Men - 22 February 2008

Athur Gilroy’s logic.

More like Fallujah than the Arabian Nights of Scherezade or a Cuban crowd all rhumbas and deep into clavé.

OMG you mean they’re not living up to your western Orientalist fantasies about what Arabs should be like.

So deeply racist and pathetic on so many levels it staggering.

And this dude’s a “liberal”.

41. marisacat - 22 February 2008

well imo Gilroy always was a redneck. I don’t care how many jazz riffs he alludes to.

42. Hair Club for Men - 22 February 2008

Ack. I want to desconstruct that steaming pile of shit and I want to settle in for the night, have a beer and go to bed early.

I hate the Internets.

43. marisacat - 22 February 2008

I rest my case:

No way around it.

Them injuns DO have repeatin’ rifles, podna. And they are AFTER OUR MORTAL ASSES.

Bet on it.

Gilroy, the Masterist, as susanw named him

44. Hair Club for Men - 22 February 2008

How do I break it to Gilroy that I’d rather not be a part of his first person plural pronoun?

45. Hair Club for Men - 22 February 2008

OK. First Gilroy wants to fight me now I’m making him cry.

Damn racists are so sensitive.

And State Department sponsored Jazz tours?

Yikes. Pay your own fucking way to Cairo. I don’t like my tax money paying to send this wanker to Egypt so he can come back and preach how all we white folk are just soooo in danger from the scary third world.

46. Intermittent Bystander - 22 February 2008

44 – Well, when somebody used a collective “we” with catnip over there recently, she asked the poster if he had worms.

47. marisacat - 22 February 2008

yes i loved her ”worms” comment…


48. Hair Club for Men - 22 February 2008

It beats Howard Dean’s “George Bush isn’t my neighbor” remark.

49. Hair Club for Men - 22 February 2008

I’ve got to wonder when all these scary Arabs and Mexicans and Poles (oops that was 100 years go) and Irish (oops 150 years ago) are going to get off their fucking asses and end Western civilization already.

Jesus. Come on guys. Get moving. I’ll show you where all the white women are. You won’t even have to buy a map.

50. marisacat - 22 February 2008

I see Gilroy is happy, someone slobbered all over his Jazz Tales of the City crap.

51. Intermittent Bystander - 22 February 2008

Maybe in Gilroy’s case, it’s a single tapeworm . . . one that squeezes up his throat every few seconds, wiggles at the audience, and urges gambling.

Tonsils the Tapeworm sez “Bet on it!”

52. Madman in the Marketplace - 22 February 2008

SAMANTHA POWER: No, but we can talk about that. I don’t think the Clinton administration set out to deliberately destroy the Iraqi people as such.

JEREMY SCAHILL: Oh, I totally disagree. But what Madeleine Albright said, it was worth the price, the hundreds of thousands of Iraqi victims of US policy.

Oh, well done Jeremy. He keeps this up, though, and he’s not gonna be invited back on American cable.

53. Intermittent Bystander - 22 February 2008

BTW, was it lucid who was noting halo photos of O, a thread or two ago?

I couldn’t resist saving the URL for this one, when I saw it recently. . . maybe ’cause it seemed an interesting Einstein-Messiah variation. It was included as a sort of Easter Egg(head?) bonus (“The Obama “Choose Your Caption” pic. If you can’t take a joke, don’t click the link”) in a diary about the candidates’ rallies in Maine.

54. Madman in the Marketplace - 22 February 2008

Howard, fwiw:

Dean: I have no idea whether the affair story is true or not, and I don’t care. What I do care about is John McCain — and this has been well-documented — is talking all the time about being a reformer and a maverick, and in fact, he has taken thousands of dollars from corporations, ridden on their corporate jets, and then turned around and tried to do favors for them and get projects approved. He has tons of lobbyists on his staff. This is a guy who is very close to the lobbyist community, a guy who has been documented again and again by taking contributions and then doing favors for it. This is not a guy who is a reformer. This is a guy who has been in Washington for 25 years and wants to give us four more years of the same, and I don’t think we need that.

Like Emmanuel and Schumer and Clinton and Hoyer and et cetera don’t have the exact same fucking problems.

55. Hair Club for Men - 22 February 2008

Ormond What’s His Fuck from PFF

Government needs to throw out religion-based bans on family planning. It would be a start. When do the Catholic hierarchs stop herding us into population explosion disasters, by saying that God’s against limiting your species’ size to sustainability?

Madison Grant (the early 20th Century racist who warned Merka against the influx of the scary East and Southern Europeans.


In the Middle Ages, through persecution resulting in actual death, life imprisonment, and banishment, the free thinking, progressive, and intellectual elements were persistently eliminated over large areas, leaving the perpetuation of the race to be carried on by the brutal, the servile, and the stupid. It is now impossible to say to what extent the Roman Church by these methods has impaired the brain capacity of Europe, but in Spain alone, for a period of over three centuries, from the year I47I to I78I, the Inquisition condemned to the stake or imprisonment an average of 1,000 persons annually. During these three centuries no less than 32,000 were burned alive, and 291,000 were condemned to various terms of imprisonment and other penalties, and 7,000 persons were burned in effigy, representing men who had died in prison or had fled the country.

F Scott Fitzgerald laughing at him.


“Civilization’s going to pieces,” broke out Tom violently. “I’ve gotten to be a terrible pessimist about things. Have you read ‘The Rise of the Colored Empires’ by this man Goddard?”
“Why, no,” I answered, rather surprised by his tone.

“Well, it’s a fine book, and everybody ought to read it. The idea is if we don’t look out the white race will be-will be utterly submerged. It’s all scientific stuff; it’s been proved.”

“Tom’s getting very profound,” said Daisy, with an expression of unthoughtful sadness. “He reads deep books with long words in them. What was that word we–”

“Well, these books are all scientific,” insisted Tom, glancing at her impatiently. “This fellow has worked out the whole thing. It’s up to us, who are the dominant race, to watch out or these other races will have control of things.”

“We’ve got to beat them down,” whispered Daisy, winking ferociously toward the fervent sun.

“You ought to live in California-” began Miss Baker, but Tom interrupted her by shifting heavily in his chair.

“This idea is that we’re Nordics. I am, and you are, and you are, and–” After an infinitesimal hesitation he included Daisy with a slight nod, and she winked at me again. “-And we’ve produced all the things that go to make civilization-oh, science and art, and all that. Do you see?”

56. Hair Club for Men - 22 February 2008

Oh, well done Jeremy. He keeps this up, though, and he’s not gonna be invited back on American cable.

Power is much slicker than someone like Daniel Pipes but Scahill nailed her. She was making the same arguments Bush does.

“Oh well maybe what we did in Yugoslavia was wrong but we’re there now and we can’t just pull out”.

57. Madman in the Marketplace - 22 February 2008

When the Terrorists Were ‘Our Guys’

Recently obtained internal FBI records and notes of a U.S. prosecutor involved in counter-terrorism cases make clear that the connections among Bush’s CIA, DINA and the Cuban Nationalist Movement (CNM) – which supplied the trigger men for the Letelier bombing – were closer than was understood at the time.

DINA provided intelligence training for CNM terrorists who acted like a “sleeper cell” inside the United States; federal prosecutions of right-wing Cuban terrorists were routinely frustrated; and the CIA did all it could to cover for its anticommunist allies who were part of a broader international terror campaign called Operation Condor.

Beginning in late 1975, Operation Condor — named after Chile’s national bird — was a joint operation of right-wing South American military dictatorships, working closely with U.S.-based Cuban and other anticommunist extremists on cross-border assassinations of political dissidents as far away as Europe.

This meant that during George H.W. Bush’s year at the CIA’s helm, the United States both harbored domestic terrorist cells and served as a base for international terrorism. Yet no U.S. official was ever held accountable — and in many cases, just the opposite.

George H.W. Bush rose to be Vice President four years later and to be President eight years after that, with his son now sitting in the Oval Office. Former President Bill Clinton has said his wife’s first act as President would be to dispatch him and George H.W. Bush on a worldwide fence-mending tour.

58. NYCO - 22 February 2008

TW, was it lucid who was noting halo photos of O, a thread or two ago?

Actually, there were quite a few halo photos of Dean back in the day. It’s almost become a photographer’s cliche.

59. marisacat - 22 February 2008

LOL McCain will just hit back at Obamamamama.

Easy enough to do.

NBC is starting the ball rolling right now…

60. Madman in the Marketplace - 22 February 2008

Kinda interesting:

It turns out that the energy of this moment is not about Hillary or Ron or Barack. It’s about who we are, and where we are, and what happens to people’s minds when they’re left hanging just a little too far past the moment when they’re ready for transformative change.

Way back in 1962, Caltech sociologist James C. Davies published an article in the American Sociological Review that summarized the conditions that determine how and when modern political revolutions occur. Intriguingly, Davies cited another scholar, Crane Brinton, who laid out seven “tentative uniformities” that he argued were the common precursors that set the stage for the Puritan, American, French, and Russian revolutions. As I read Davies’ argument, it struck me that the same seven stars Brinton named are now precisely lined up at midheaven over America in 2008. Taken together, it’s a convergence that creates the perfect social, economic, and political conditions for the biggest revolution since the shot heard ’round the world.

And even more interestingly: in every case, we got here as a direct result of either intended or unintended consequences of the conservatives’ war against liberal government, and their attempt to take over our democracy and replace it with a one-party plutocracy. It turns out that, historically, liberal nations make very poor grounds for revolution — but deeply conservative ones very reliably create the conditions that eventually make violent overthrow necessary. And our own Republicans, it turns out, have done a hell of a job.

Here are the seven criteria, along with the reasons why we’re fulfilling each of them now, and how conservative policies conspired to put us on the road to possible revolution.

Snipping out the seven criteria:

1. Soaring, Then Crashing

Davies notes that revolutions don’t happen in traditional societies that are stable and static — where people have their place, things are as they’ve always been, and nobody expects any of that to change. Rather, modern revolutions — particularly the progressive-minded ones in which people emerge from the fray with greater rights and equality — happen in economically advancing societies, always at the point where a long period of rising living standards and high, hopeful expectations comes to a crashing end, leaving the citizens in an ugly and disgruntled mood.

2. They Call It A Class War

Marx called this one true, says Davies. Progressive modern democracies run on mutual trust between classes and a shared vision of the common good that binds widely disparate groups together. Now, we’re also about to re-learn the historical lesson that liberals like flat hierarchies, racial and religious tolerance, and easy class mobility not because we’re soft-headed and soft-hearted — but because, unlike short-sighted conservatives, we understand that tight social cohesion is our most reliable and powerful bulwark against the kinds of revolutions that bring down great economies, nations and cultures.

3. Deserted Intellectuals

Mere unrest among the working and middle classes, all by itself, isn’t enough. Revolutions require leaders — and those always come from the professional and intellectual classes. In most times and places, these groups (which also include military officers) usually enjoy comfortable ties to the upper classes, and access to a certain level of power. But if those connections become frayed and weak, and the disaffected intellectuals make common cause with the lower classes, revolution becomes almost inevitable.

Davies notes that, compared to both the upper and lower classes, the members of America’s upper-middle class were relatively untouched by Great Depression. Because of this, their allegiances to the existing social structure largely remained intact; and he argues that their continued engagement was probably the main factor that allowed America to avert an all-out revolution in the 1930s.

4. Incompetent Government

As this blog has long argued, conservatives invariably govern badly because they don’t really believe that government should exist at all — except, perhaps, as a way to funnel the peoples’ tax money into the pockets of party insiders. This conflicted (if not outright hostile) attitude toward government can’t possibly lead to any outcome other than bad management, bad policy, and eventually such horrendously bad social and economic outcomes that people are forced into the streets to hold their leaders to account.

It turns out there’s never been a modern revolution that didn’t start against a backdrop of atrocious government malfeasance in the face of precipitously declining fortunes. From George III’s onerous taxes to Marie Antoinette’s “Let them eat cake,” revolutions begin when stubborn aristocrats heap fuel on the fire by blithely disregarding the falling fortunes of their once-prosperous citizens. And America is getting dangerously close to that point now. Between our corporate-owned Congress and the spectacularly bad judgment of Bush’s executive branch, there’s never been a government in American history more inept, corrupt, and criminally negligent than this one — or more shockingly out of touch with what the average American is going through. Just ask anyone from New Orleans — or anyone who has a relative in the military.

5. Gutless Wonders in the Ruling Class

Revolution becomes necessary when the ruling classes fail in their duty to lead. Most of the major modern political revolutions occurred at moments when the world was changing rapidly — and the country’s leaders dealt with it by dropping back into denial and clinging defiantly to the old, profitable, and familiar status quo. New technologies, new ideas, and new economic opportunities were emerging; and there came a time when ignoring them was no longer an option. When the leaders failed to step forward boldly to lead their people through the looming and necessary transformations, the people rebelled.

6. Fiscal Irresponsibility

As we’ve seen, revolutions follow in the wake of national economic reversals. Almost always, these reversals occur when inept and corrupt governments mismanage the national economy to the point of indebtedness, bankruptcy, and currency collapse.

7. Inept and Inconsistent Use of Force

The final criterion for revolution is this: The government no longer exercises force in a way that people find fair or consistent. And this can happen in all kinds of ways.

Domestically, there’s uneven sentencing, where some people get the maximum and others get cut loose without penalty — and neither outcome has any connection to the actual circumstances of the crime (though it often correlates all too closely with race, class, and the ability to afford a good lawyer). Unchecked police brutality (tasers, for example) that hardens public perception against the constabulary. Unwarranted police surveillance and legal harassment of law-abiding citizens going about their business. Different kinds of law enforcement for different neighborhoods. The use of government force to silence critics. And let’s not forget the unconstitutional restriction of free speech and free assembly rights.

Abroad, there’s the misuse of military force, which forces the country to pour its blood and treasure into misadventures that offer no clear advantage for the nation. These misadventures not only reduce the country’s international prestige and contribute to economic declines; they often create a class of displaced soldiers who return home with both the skills and the motivation to turn political unrest into a full-fledged shooting war.

Each of those points if fleshed out more, and she ends with:

And Barack Obama is walking away with the moment because he talks of “hope” — which, as Davies makes clear, is the very first thing any would-be revolutionary needs. And then he talks of “change,” which many of his followers are clearly hearing as a soft word for “revolution.” And then he describes — not in too much detail — a different future, and what it means to be a transformative president, and in doing so answers our deep frustration at 30 years of leaders who faced the looming future by turning their heads instead of facing it.

Will he deliver on this promise of change? That remains to be seen. But the success of his presidency, if there is to be one, will likely be measured on how well his policies confront and deal with these seven criteria for revolution. If those preconditions are all still in place in 2012, the fury will have had another four years to rise. And at that point, if history rhymes, mere talk of hope and change will no longer be enough.

Personally, I think he’s likely to be another donk hack (thus being part of problem #5, as he has been so far), and thus might just feed the discontent.

61. marisacat - 22 February 2008


hmm well regardless whether it were to be Hillary or Obama… my guess is the Faith Based offices stay in the West Wing. Bush is pushing for a 5 year renewal of PEPFAR in Africa…. The New Direction Congress as Nancy is calling it has denied him nothing.

LOL I doubt the 19% approval will change anything…

I am sure there will be some slight relaxation of the constrictions on family planning etc monies thru USAID and other orgs… but little will really change.

Think the $$… it was some horrifically high funding the Dem approved for abstinence programs this past year. 200 mil… and while it is a drop in the bucket… federal monies for domestic birth control are not going up. (moiv field report).

The government long term seems to want babies for harvest…

62. liberalcatnip - 22 February 2008

I was left behind. 😦

Catching up now.

63. liberalcatnip - 22 February 2008

9. But isn’t it all just about new rhetoric to feed American exceptionalism?

That’s exactly what it looks like, sounds like and smells like from here. It truly is nauseating.

64. Madman in the Marketplace - 22 February 2008


Madison — Sen. Russ Feingold voted for Sen. Barack Obama in Tuesday’s presidential primary, and said he would likely cast his ballot the same way as a super delegate at the Democratic National Convention in August.

Feingold, a Democrat from Middleton, said he voted for the Illinois senator over Sen. Hillary Clinton of New York because of Obama’s ability to motivate people and his long-standing opposition to the war in Iraq.

“It was a very difficult choice because they’re both good,” Feingold said. “They have different strengths, but in the end I just decided he seemed like a very interesting candidate who would be very exciting and also send a great message throughout the country and throughout the world.”

Feingold said he was “highly inclined” to vote for Obama as a super delegate because he won the Wisconsin race.

The Capital Times first reported this morning on Feingold’s vote and likely plans as a super delegate.

Feingold told the Journal Sentinel he recognized that Clinton had more experience than Obama and that he preferred Clinton’s health-care plan. But he said he ultimately chose Obama, in part because of his opposition to the war.

65. Hair Club for Men - 22 February 2008

That thud you heard was the sound of Feingold’s ass landing on the bandwagon.

Of course I have heard from John Nichols that Feingold was working for Obama behind the scenes in Wisconsin before he actually endorsed.

Maybe Obama will put Feingold on the Supreme Court. He should sail through the Senate since the Dems have a majority and he’s a sitting member of the Senate.

66. liberalcatnip - 22 February 2008

AP is reporting that Nader will be on MTP this Sunday, possibly to announce another presidential run.

Here’s my fantasy for the next Dem debate:

Obama and Clinton are sitting on stage, blabbing as usual, when they’re suddenly distracted by some movement, stage left.

Out walks Al Gore holding a chair. (applause applause..the crowd goes wild)

He walks over to Hill and Barry and plunks his chair down right between them, grabs one of their mics (after telling the crowd to shush) and says:

“Move over, lightweights. I’m running for president!” (applause applause, standing ovation…Hill and Barry are stunned, speechless, and forcing faked smiles and golf claps).

And then…

Gore says…

“And I’ve chosen Dennis Kucinich as my VP!” (mass confusion…uncertain applause…but the crowd cheers anyway as Seabiscuit walks out onto the stage smiling and waving.)

Hill and Barry pass out.

The following day, the blaghers’ heads collectively explode.


Hey, at least things would get really fun then!

(not that I’d vote for any Dem…if I could vote…I just have an active imagination…)

67. Intermittent Bystander - 22 February 2008

Why isn’t there a fruit juice factory in Kandihar? It’s the pomegranate capital of the world.

– Former NPR reporter Sarah Chayes, who will be on Moyers Journal tonight.

There are a lot of people, I think, both in the West and in the Muslim world, who believe in clash of civilizations. Who want to see the world as a place dominated by two irrevocably hostile blocs. I don’t wanna live in that kinda world. I think that we live in an interconnected world full of rich, flawed, varied civilizations that are inextricably intertwined. And, so what I’m doing in Afghanistan is working for that intertwined world.

68. Madman in the Marketplace - 22 February 2008

Maybe Obama will put Feingold on the Supreme Court.

That might be the best outcome. God knows that continually caving to the donk leadership has made him a much less important and useful Senator.

69. marisacat - 22 February 2008

I think Obama goes for a Hispanic female of the so called “moderate” bent. More right than center.

Whammo he hits the womens vote, the Latino vote (who will b restless) and the catholic vote. And she will fall in with the Kennedy lean to Scalia and Roberts.

Just my guess…………

70. marisacat - 22 February 2008


anything! to break up the last 8 months of the Long March.


71. Madman in the Marketplace - 22 February 2008

I think that we live in an interconnected world full of rich, flawed, varied civilizations that are inextricably intertwined.

Oh, I see the world that way too. It’s the interactions that make life better, the combinations and cultural clashes. A world full of weird cross pollination is so much the better. All of the fake conflict and divisions are so anti-human.

Thanks so much for that quote.

72. bayprairie - 22 February 2008

Major white person anxiety going on at PFF.

that dude says “Bet on it” too often.

kind of dangerous for a improvisatory musician, to get stuck in a never-ending repetitive rut like that, playing the same phrase over and over and over…

bet on it

73. Madman in the Marketplace - 22 February 2008

Empire and Burlesque: Permanent Bases Rise While Public Gawks at Geeks

Today of course, in our glittering 21st century of ubiquitous, 24-hour, multi-platform media access, we can watch geeks for free: all we have to do is turn to the latest reports on the presidential campaign. There we can see the revolting but fascinating spectacle of freakish characters willing to do just about anything – gnaw off a chicken head, lie like a dog, pander like a door pimp, crawl on their bellies to tongue a corporate boot, turn themselves inside out and shake their innards at the camera – to grab our attention and please the carnival’s owners. We are also subjected to endless exegesis of every aspect of the geeks’ performance: “Wasn’t it wonderful how Obama nipped that chicken neck so expertly? Did Hillary do enough to win back the crowd when she slurped down the heart and the liver the same time? Should she have tried to get the gizzard in too? And what about McCain’s trouble getting that right wing down his throat? Let’s see what our expert analysts have to say. Over to you, Bill Kristol and James Carville….”

But while the feathers fly and the fan dancers trot across the electoral stage, the deadly, democracy-killing business of empire-building grinds on behind the gaudy scenes. And not a single one of the top troika are taking a stand against it; indeed, all of them have made their commitment to American military dominance of the planet – and their proud refusal to take any option “off the table” in world affairs – crystal clear. What we are seeing now – and what we will see when the race narrows down to just a pair of geeks chomping at the chicken – is simply a debate over the best way to keep the empire in fighting trim while gussying up some of the ham-handed excesses of the past few years.

A few days ago came the news – ignored or buried by almost every venue of that non-stop multi-platform media echo chamber – that the United States has made a very significant, and very permanent, addition its empire of bases: one that American officials freely admit will allow them to project “full spectrum” military dominance over 27 sovereign nations. And of course, what is most noteworthy about the development, reported in full in the Pentagon’s own Stars and Stripes newspaper, is that this astonishing declaration of imperial aggression and hubris is regarded as something completely normal – indeed laudatory.

74. NYCO - 22 February 2008

And Barack Obama is walking away with the moment because he talks of “hope” — which, as Davies makes clear, is the very first thing any would-be revolutionary needs.

Wrong. The first thing that is required is mourning and brutal honesty.

With Obama and Clinton that is impossible, since they obviously do not really repent over the war or even want to really re-think it.

75. Madman in the Marketplace - 22 February 2008

well, this was predictable: AP Survey: Superdelegates Jump to Obama

76. Intermittent Bystander - 22 February 2008

Madman – YVW.

Watching Chayes now on Moyers. She’s got eyes like diamond lasers, and she’s on fire – describing life in the opium economy (not Taliban-controlled she says, just businessmen) and corruption throughout the Karzai government (basically a criminal enterprise), and the absurdities, dangers, and lack of accountability in the money chain involving US/International “aid.” (Bush and Bin Laden are on the same team. She’s on the other team.)

I don’t think hope is relevant. I think determination is the only thing that counts.

(Will check cross-pollination Youtube shortly.)

77. Madman in the Marketplace - 22 February 2008

Michael Moore says insurance industry would love Clinton’s healthcare plan

Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton’s (D-N.Y.) proposal to mandate that all people purchase health insurance would be a boon to the industry, filmmaker Michael Moore said Friday.

“Can you imagine, every time Sen. Clinton says that, the licking of the lips that goes on with these health insurance executives?” Moore said during a conference call with reporters.

Moore, director of the Academy Award-nominated documentary “SiCKO” about the U.S. healthcare system, criticized both Clinton and her rival for the Democratic presidential nomination, Sen. Barack Obama (Ill.), for failing to support a universal system of government-financed health coverage during their runs for the White House. “The two Democratic candidates don’t quite get it,” he said.

Clinton’s campaign responded with a shot at Moore.

“His movie notwithstanding, Michael Moore clearly doesn’t know a whole lot about how healthcare policy works,” Clinton spokesman Jay Carson said in an e-mail. He said Clinton’s healthcare plan would insure every American and make sure that covering people and not profits are the top priority.

He then took a shot at Obama, who battled with Clinton over healthcare Thursday night during a Texas debate, by stating that Obama’s plan would leave 15 million people uninsured.

Moore credited Clinton and Obama with good intentions but suggested they were too influenced by campaign contributions from healthcare interests.

“I think in their hearts, they want to get it. But it’s not just their hearts that’s speaking, it’s their wallets,” he said.

Moore noted that Clinton and Obama have received more campaign contributions from healthcare interests than any other presidential candidates, including all those who ran for the Republican nomination. Healthcare interests “know which way the wind is blowing” and believe the next president will be a Democrat, Moore said.

In place of the Clinton and Obama plans, Moore touted legislation sponsored by Rep. John Conyers Jr. (D-Mich.) that would extend Medicare benefits to the nation’s entire population. Conyers has endorsed Obama for president.

Moore would not say whether he would campaign for the candidate who wins the Democratic nomination.

He also said he will not offer an endorsement unless a candidate at least moves closer to his position on single-payer healthcare. Moore dismissed out of hand the healthcare proposals of presumptive Republican nominee Sen. John McCain (Ariz.).

78. Madman in the Marketplace - 22 February 2008

Chayes was very interesting on Moyers.

79. Madman in the Marketplace - 22 February 2008
80. Intermittent Bystander - 22 February 2008

Fun video at 71! Just heard a story about how bhangra is sweeping the campuses here, there, and everywhere. Thanks for the demo!

Loved the dance outfits, too. The contrast with “decadent mainstream” Western popstar fashion (name your favorite poisoned apple pie) reminded me of seeing the amazing Chinese National Circus in Montreal, decades ago. The orchestra (traditional-instruments) was so rich and subtle, as were the beautiful silk acrobat pajamas of the performers, and all the props for the tumblers, trick-bicycle riders, etc., were so simple, but exquisite . . . the contrast with Ringling Brothers or Barnum’s pomp-and-sex-and-sequins-plus-animal-exploitation couldn’t be more extreme.

And now we have Cirque de Soleil, and the Big Apple, and lots of others. Cross-pollination rocks and rolls. Free the bees!

81. Madman in the Marketplace - 22 February 2008

I first heard of bhangra when the whole asian underground thing started getting popular in NYC, back when I was living there. It mixed in some Bhangra stuff. I can only take it in small doses, but sometimes it just sounds so good.

The local AMC theater near Milwaukee has taken to showing Bollywood movies on one or two screens every week, and I notice when I go to Saturday matinees to see my usual action trash that the Bollywood showings for that evening are often already all sold out by noon.

I’m not very good at it (prolly cause I don’t study enough), but I’ve really enjoyed the Mandarin classes I’ve taken. It’s so enriching to hear new music, learn new words, see the world through a different framework. I’m really baffled by people who are threatened by other cultures, by change. Yes, sometimes it makes me uncomfortable (when I first moved to Washington Heights I couldn’t figure out why everybody was hanging out on the street … you don’t do that in midwestern suburbs), but life isn’t to be lived to make uptight whiteboys feel comfortable.

When you allow yourself to hide from difference and become settled and comfortable that’s when you begin to rot.

82. Madman in the Marketplace - 22 February 2008
83. Intermittent Bystander - 22 February 2008

Ha ha ha ha! Viva Obama uses the black cowboy hat photo! Not-so-subliminal solidarity with the singers in sombreros!

Absolutely nauseating performance (as in cloying feminist guilt trip) by Letty Cottin Pogrebin on NOW . . . part of a dual interview with her and her daughter, who’s voting for Obama. It hurts, Letty says. Would it be so bad to make the young black whippersnapper wait 8 years? I’m not changing my mind, Mom, sez the daughter.

Surely someone could have done better surrogacy than that. Oy!

84. Intermittent Bystander - 22 February 2008

Oops – forgot the scare quotes on “feminist.”


85. Madman in the Marketplace - 22 February 2008

another shitty lineup on Maher tonight.

David Frum, Jack Kingston (R from GA) and Amy Walter (Washington Journal) for the panel.

Maybe Taibbi will redeem it at the end, but I doubt it.

86. Intermittent Bystander - 22 February 2008

Slightly better effort by Letty here: Hillary’s husband problem.

That a candidate’s spouse has a significant effect on voters’ decisions seems incontrovertible. A CBS News poll conducted in June 2007 found that six in 10 voters consider a presidential candidate’s spouse “very” or “somewhat important.” The poll did not differentiate between President Clinton and the female spouses, a distinction that may have yielded more layered results. Nonetheless, the numbers were telling. A spouse was considered important by 65 percent of the women and 50 percent of men. Republicans (71 percent) were more likely than Democrats (54 percent) or Independents (49 percent) to say they would factor the presidential spouse into their decision. Among those 45 years and older, nearly seven of ten respondents said the candidate’s spouse would affect their decision.

Unfortunately, history suggests that rather than enhance her image the way a wife enhances a male candidate, a husband can complicate a woman’s leadership aspirations. Eleanor Holmes Norton, Jeanine Pirro, Dianne Feinstein, Geraldine Ferraro, Nancy Pelosi, and Elizabeth Dole are among those who have had to explain, defend, or distance themselves from their husbands’ statements, activities, behavior, or improprieties.

From Feb. 14. Valentine’s Day! Awww, that hurts!

87. Intermittent Bystander - 22 February 2008

More Letty:

Due to the husband problem, the ideal status for a woman candidate seems to be widow. The widow enters the fray with the sympathy of her constituency, a sense of entitlement, the assumption of her husband’s legacy, and the credential of having been a wife without the complication of having to accommodate the demands of a living man.

American women who’ve been appointed or elected to public office as a result of their husbands’ deaths include Wyoming’s Nellie Tayloe Ross, the first woman governor; Hattie Wyatt Caraway of Arkansas, the first female senator (appointed and then elected twice more in her own right); two noteworthy women from Maine, Margaret Chase Smith and Olympia Snowe; Muriel Humphrey of Minnesota, widow of Hubert; Maureen Brown Neuberger of Oregon, widow of Richard; Huey P. Long’s widow, rose McConnell Long of Louisiana; California Congresswoman Mary Bono, widow of Sonny Bono who died in a skiing accident; and New York Congresswoman Carolyn McCarthy, who ran for office after a madman killed her husband.

Internationally, Bangladesh, Guyana, Sri Landa, the Philippines, Nicaragua, and Panama have had female presidents or prime ministers who assumed power after their husbands died or were assassinated in office.

Whaddya know – full circle and back to the topic at the top.

88. Intermittent Bystander - 22 February 2008

Whoops, bad HTML – sorry! Blockquotes start at “Due to” and end at “assassinated in office.”

MitM – I’m very grateful for the international influences and experiences my life has happened to include, from infancy to the present day. But I had never set foot in any part of Asia until I had a chance to visit Thailand a few years ago, and I loved every second of it. . . .

If the State Department is sending Gilroy-Americans to Cairo, I hope you get a chance to try out your Mandarin in Shanghai some day.

89. Intermittent Bystander - 22 February 2008

Thanks, MCat!

90. Madman in the Marketplace - 22 February 2008

I hope you get a chance to try out your Mandarin in Shanghai some day.

I hope so too.

91. BooHooHooMan - 22 February 2008

This thing about assassination , I dunno, there seems to be a lot floating around… IMO a combo mostly of denialists believing that they really are riding on something other than an incremantalist train (LOL – at most) as well as the usual stripes of wingers fucking with his buzz on the wire, a sprinkling of others…

There’s Plenty of legal and olitical clean shots to go around on all pols in the game, beyond that, the stepover into character assassination is the usual weapon of choice…but , – tying in with melvin in # 12 abovethe notion of BO accidentally midwifing a movement beyond his control-melvin

Taking someone down is always aimed at the supporters to prevent or disperse massing as it is anything else..IMO, The core underlying political lean of the unwashed masses isn’t neccessarily even the thing.. The reality is the country was as culturally right in the early 60’s..50/50 . it’s on the transition, the prospect of unwashed masses veiwing themselves as something other than such where it gets sticky… my view is JFK got whacked for a mistaken perception of a threat to the MIC, King personally was not a threat, his mobilization was…My read of the Christian fairy tale , if you believe such things, – is Bejeebus got whacked as much for the crowd draw as anything else…

By most accounts, the request for Secret Service protection– that WAS driven by the Mrs. Llama at the insistance of Chi AA establishment. Aside from the political aspect to it from the campaign , the profile raising “me too” Prezzy accroutrement, but also the idea of putting a marker down, the idea if they spurned protection and something happened, no where to go with that one— kind of like putting tape on a door lest someone come in,but there it is……

Other countervailing factors are the Markets .both above board and , .
not so much…(Dead Pools wedded to crypto)

Much of what is being thrown around is ill informed as there are so many other cheaper less chaotic mechanisms available to capital to achieve equilibrium…That said, real sheepherders were never really considered a dangerous occupation until you get people traipsing off on that Lamb of God shit…

92. Intermittent Bystander - 22 February 2008

Bayprairie at 72 – Word.


‘Night all!

93. BooHooHooMan - 22 February 2008

Sheared (sic) sacrifice and patience will now (continue to) be sold by a pliable, albeit expanded Democratic majority to a pliable, albeit expanded Democratic base.

They’re asking us to wait and giving us the runaround but they’re OUR people doing it will settle in before long…

The PTB just needs to call their upscale caterers, with changes of address for the good stuff, otherwise its springing for a few Pizzas for the rookie cops on the corner… The deal is to explore further for vasssals overseas and another round to ghettoize somenew faces here…Oh the New “We” will begin again, yes they can…right at the freshly paved intersection of exceptionalism and greed.

94. Intermittent Bystander - 22 February 2008

the freshly paved intersection of exceptionalism and greed.

The layers of accumulated tarmac reach to the stars.

OK, now I’m really out.

Smileyface with flag-waving roadworker – and ban/slash – in honor of peace-symbol anniversary here.

95. marisacat - 22 February 2008

hmm I see the story on McCain marches on… via Wapo. Josh Marshall had a good short update this am at TPM… NYT has opened their reporters to answer submitted Q^A… I did nto even open that… here a bit there a bit. But McCain has shut down response.

Be interesting to watch this play out.

96. BooHooHooMan - 22 February 2008

Already talk of a thousand Year Reich. Nothing about throwing the Ministers, Priests and Rabbis out on there asses, much less guys with guns..

LOL. Predictable from RonK, a jerk, but correct, motivation aside….

LMAO at one of the responses….

Obama will out-DLC the DLC (1+ / 0-)

Recommended by:

… and close the door on a potential progressive era, for the foreseeable future.

Clinton Cocktail Hour lives!

by RonK Seattle on Fri Feb 22, 2008 at 09:13:30 PM PST

RonK Seattle (5+ / 0-)

Recommended by:
eztempo, NeuvoLiberal, AntKat, lams712, Mardish

You just don’t get it. He’s a liberal who can appeal to others. He’s is the left wing Reagan. He won’t out DLC the DLC, he’ll do better. Instead of kicking them out, he’ll turn them left and they won’t realize it. Honestly, he is a cult of personality—and that is a good thing.

Candidates have two choices—adopt the positions of the voters or convince the voters that your positions are right. To do the latter you need to be a cult of personality. And that is what we need!

by cavebird on Fri Feb 22, 2008 at 09:17:33 PM PST

97. marisacat - 22 February 2008

this scheisse that some pol is a closet lefty who will do whatever to get inside then begin radio transmissions to the partisans still fighting in the hills is hilarious.

ANd all over the place for a couple years now. Gilroy pushed that for years about Hillary (did he miss the Goldwater support!?)… and now it is pushed for a year about Obama.

Who, imo, did what was necessary in a liberal to left district in greater Chicago (he. even. met. with. real. former. rads!!… he sat with Edward Said!, he espoused single payer! he called the war dumb as he ran for local office in that district! etcetera!)… and now will do a center right turn for the WH.

And not even wave to the huddled masses back on the burning pier.

98. liberalcatnip - 22 February 2008

Well, here’s the deal (which I might expand into a blog rant tomorrow when my brain is functioning at more than 10%). When I hear these Obama supporters talk about how hopified and changapaloozad they are, I wonder “okay, what are you doing right now to change things? Or are you just waiting for the next Daddy America to do it all for you? Are you out there helping the poor you have access to? The people who’ve lost their homes due to the mortgage crisis (and other economic reasons)? Or are you just hoping that Daddy America will fix that? Are you helping a child learn? Or are you waiting for Daddy America to start some kind of program that you can then join to show you Obama-credentials? You complain about how Repubs choose father-figures as their leaders. How is this Daddy America luvfest any different? If you truly believe that you are the change you’ve been waiting for, what are you doing to prove it? And why aren’t you getting behind someone who’s actually going to kick some asses and take names – as if impeaching the bastards who are in office right now? You want “accountability” and “responsibility”? Why are you waiting until Daddy America takes office to make that happen? Do you really need instructions?”

/end o’ rant for tonite

99. liberalcatnip - 22 February 2008

Attack on the green zone…no big deal. And to make his/her point, he channels Rummy:

Please, I have friends who are forward air (0 / 0)

controllers in Iraq, and they catch poorly aimed mortar shells every day. This is not newsworthy.

This is no indication of how well the “surge” is working. Hours per day of electricity. Miles of roads that are passable. Waste water treated. Infant mortality rates. These are better milestones, but they are poorly reported.

Having credibility when making an argument is the straightest path to persuasion.

by SpamNunn on Fri Feb 22, 2008 at 11:14:55 PM MST

Ironic sig line alert.

100. liberalcatnip - 22 February 2008
101. liberalcatnip - 22 February 2008
102. liberalcatnip - 22 February 2008

GM exec stands by calling global warming a “crock” (of shit)

That’s encouraging.


Mr. Lutz, considered GM’s product guru, was critical of environmentalists, especially the Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS) which advocates for using existing technologies — such as better aerodynamics, lower tire resistance and more efficient transmissions — to produce significant fuel economy gains. Mr. Lutz and UCS officials met privately last spring. “I’m not sure if they are concerned,” he said. “But they are certainly not scientists.” According to Lutz, GM and the auto industry has already “tapped out” on obtaining fuel efficiency benefits from conventional technologies. “We are at the very steep part of that curve.”

Mr. Lutz then criticized current Democratic proposals to raise Corporate Average Fuel Efficiency (CAFE) standards. He singled out Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton as a playing a political game of one-upmanship with competing unrealistic plans to raise required fuel efficiency to 40 mpg in the next decade or so. “CAFE is a totally flawed strategy,” said Lutz. “It has never worked and it never will.” He remarked that achieving those levels of fuel efficiency will raise the cost of vehicles by $6,000 or $7,000, which consumers will not be willing to pay. Lutz suggested that raising gas taxes was a more effective solution to getting consumers to drive less and to drive smaller vehicles. “If I were dictator of America, I would gradually raise the price of gasoline by 25 cents every six months or so, until it’s more in line with gas prices in the rest of the world.”

When the floor was opened to questions, Mr. Lutz was asked about the wisdom of producing vehicles that can run on an 85-percent blend of ethanol — based on the questionable environmental, energy, and economic benefits of the alternative fuel. He responded by accusing the American Petroleum Institute of running a multi-million dollar smear campaign against ethanol. “They make it sound like ethanol is taking food out of the mouths of babes. According to them, we’re going to have taco riots in Mexico because of ethanol.” Lutz did admit that the net energy benefits of corn-based ethanol are “not what we would like to see” and pointed to the development of next-generation cellulosic ethanol as a necessary step.

That guy’s just a real charmer!

103. Hair Club for Men - 22 February 2008

Well, here’s the deal (which I might expand into a blog rant tomorrow when my brain is functioning at more than 10%). When I hear these Obama supporters talk about how hopified and changapaloozad they are, I wonder “okay, what are you doing right now to change things?

Have to admit some Obama seem to have their heads jammed up their asses. Like this guy.


First he sounds like Pat Buchanan or the gang at Stormfront

Now do you understand my fear of Muslims? I don’t hate the people, but I recognize anger when I see it. My mother lived in Ismir Turkey for 4 years, my brother and sister were old enough to remember much too, so I have direct references to query who have good memories of Muslim values.

Then he thinks Obama is the magic bullet.

I don’t know what we can do just yet, if anything. In this case I don’t think that having a Man named Barack Hussein Obama as our President is a bad place to start.

What’s going to happen when the majority of those poor Egyptians stay pissed at us for propping up their dictatorship even after Obama becomes president?

104. BooHooHooMan - 22 February 2008

The thing they fail to recognize in the glee of outsized victories on the backs of an ideologically undefined / less-than-specifically-prioritzed agenda is the ease with which any number of individual constituencies can be blown off. To The Goopers, its all about tax cuts, corp dereg, mil spending and slash and burn WRT services..

.Where is the same frank, Ideological case made for the inverse? Punitive Taxation, Increased Social Spending, Decreased Military Spending, Regulation wrt Collusive Markets and Environmental Abuses??? NONE of the work has been done to define what kind of society we see for ourselves..NONE of it…

I’m not even saying that I can’t envision degradation among those choices over time ..But essentially, it comes down to a durable, reasonable confidence in understanding
“well being”
on terms other than our present paradigms…

105. marisacat - 22 February 2008

I don’t even have t click and look that is denali.

Who is one sick puppy.

106. liberalcatnip - 22 February 2008

Obamalama during Thursday nite’s debate:

“OBAMA: Well, I think it is indisputable that we’ve seen violence reduced in Iraq.”

Iraqis: ‘Surge’ Is a Catastrophe – by Ali al-Fadhily and Dahr Jamail

BAGHDAD – What the US has been calling the success of a “surge,” many Iraqis see as evidence of catastrophe. Where US forces point to peace and calm, local Iraqis find an eerie silence.

And when US forces speak of a reduction in violence, many Iraqis simply do not know what they are talking about.

Hundreds died in a series of explosions in Baghdad last month. This was despite the strongest ever security measures taken by the US military, riding the “surge” in security forces and their activities.

The death toll is high, according to the website icasualties.org, which provides reliable numbers of Iraqi civilian and security deaths.

In January this year 485 civilians were killed, according to the website. It says the number is based on news reports, and that “actual totals for Iraqi deaths are higher than the numbers recorded on this site.”

The average month in 2005, before the “surge” was launched, saw 568 civilian deaths. In January 2006, the month before the “surge” began, 590 civilians died.

Many of the killings have taken place in the most well guarded areas of Baghdad. And they have continued this month.

“Two car bombs exploded in Jadriya, killing so many people, the day the American Secretary of Defense (Robert Gates) was visiting Baghdad last week,” a captain from the Karrada district police in Baghdad, speaking on condition of anonymity, told IPS.

“Another car bomb killed eight people and injured 20 Thursday (last week) in the Muraidy market of Sadr City, east of Baghdad, although the Mehdi army (the militia of Muqtada al-Sadr) provides strict protection to the city,” the officer said. “There is no security in this country any more.”

Unidentified bodies of Iraqis killed by militias continue to appear in Baghdad and other Iraqi cities. The Iraqi government has issued instructions to all security and health offices not to give out the body count to the media. Dozens of bodies are found every day across Baghdad, residents say. Morgue officials confirm this.

“We are not authorized to issue any numbers, but I can tell you that we are still receiving human bodies every day; the men have no identity on them,” a doctor at the Baghdad morgue told IPS. “The bodies that have signs of torture are the Sunnis killed by Shi’ite militias; those with a bullet in the head are usually policemen, translators or contractors who worked for the Americans.”
Some of the apparent peace on the street is a consequence of rising detentions. In November last year Karl Matley, head of the Iraqi branch of the International Committee of the Red Cross, declared that more than 60,000 prisoners and detainees are held in prisons and other detention centers. A large number of these were taken during the “surge.”

By August 2007, half a year into the “surge,” the number of detainees held by the US-led military forces in Iraq had swelled by 50 percent, with the inmate population growing to 24,500, from 16,000 in February, according to US military officers in Iraq.

The officers reported that nearly 85 percent of the detainees in custody were Sunni Arabs.

Given that the majority of the detained are Sunnis, the “surge,” rather than bridging political differences and aiding reconciliation between Sunni and Shi’ite groups, appears to have had the opposite effect.

It’s all a facade.

107. marisacat - 22 February 2008


Can I disassociate from both Pogrebins? (on NOW the Mother Daugher split in the election)

108. liberalcatnip - 22 February 2008

103. Gilroy is a joke. Like I told him, he’d better stock up on diapers because all of pants-shitting is bound to be hard on his laundry bill.

I hope there are safety belts and helmets on Obama’s Hopemobile™. One little bump and Gilroy just might shoot someone for looking Muslim.

109. marisacat - 22 February 2008


and denali is also actively calling people who decline to vote for Obama racists. LOL.

He’s nto alone in that.

But he has to get inline behind the Orange Jesters in terms of calling this blog racist. and homophobe. And whatever else they have lobbbed.

110. BooHooHooMan - 22 February 2008

# 98 catnip re Daddy America taking care of it all

…no doubt, a lot of that, the idea that governmentalizing will solve it all,…OTOH, the Thousand Point of Lighters make hay with it, cynically using a common sense argument born of experience to deny the kind of capital and scale to rollback resource inequity…”Throwing money at problems’ , they say, is not the way to go, unless of course its the problem defined by them, Security for our “Friends”, Industrial and Research Parks, etc……its all bullshit.

One thing that got very little notice from Hillary, which under other news circumstances would have brought the Wrath of Khan- is one little blip she said at the Debate last night, that she would FREEZE interest rates for FIVE years..It’s probably been trotted out before, not that it crossed my radar, though…

111. liberalcatnip - 22 February 2008

Punitive Taxation, Increased Social Spending, Decreased Military Spending, Regulation wrt Collusive Markets and Environmental Abuses???

That pretty much sums up the NDP in Canada.

Of course, they always get dinged with the “tax and spend” meme (as do the Liberals) but they’ve actually run some successful provincial regimes.

112. Hair Club for Men - 22 February 2008

Gilroy is a joke. Like I told him, he’d better stock up on diapers because all of pants-shitting is bound to be hard on his laundry bill.

Gilroy and the white boyz at PFF are afraid of Muslims because Islam gives them a conduit to express their class rage at the fact that 1% of the world’s population owns 90% of the wealth (or something like that).

The one thing I respect about Islam is that it doesn’t preach to its followers to defer their happiness to the afterlife and respect the current state of class division (render to God what is God and to Caeser what is Caeser’s). The Muslim call for a theocracy is in some ways a call for class rebellion.

BUT in the end, Islam’s a dead end. That’s why the US ruling class cultivated fundamentalist Islam as a way to break down Communism. In the end, Communism was more dangerous than Islam.

Huey Newton and Fred Hampton were more dangerous than Farrakhan is. That’s why they killed Fred Hampton and let Farrakhan have Million Man Marches on the Capitol Mall.

113. liberalcatnip - 22 February 2008

denali – bowing down before his frat-boy masters. He’s fun to swat around but he’s become too predictable. (Hi denali!)

114. liberalcatnip - 22 February 2008

Krugman: Demon ethanol

I’m almost never censored at the Times. However, I was told that I couldn’t use the lede I originally wrote for my column following the 2007 State of the Union address, in which Bush made ethanol the centerpiece of his energy strategy: “Before the State of the Union address, there had been hints and hopes that President Bush would offer a serious plan to reduce our dependence on imported oil. Instead, however, he took refuge in alcohol.”

Well, anyway — the news on ethanol just keeps getting worse. Bad for the economy, bad for consumers, bad for the planet — what’s not to love?

Those corporate pockets run deep.

115. liberalcatnip - 22 February 2008

110. I think I have heard her say she’d freeze interest rates before. (YMMV…I’m tired.) I don’t know what the reaction was. I didn’t check.

116. Hair Club for Men - 22 February 2008

denali – bowing down before his frat-boy masters. He’s fun to swat around but he’s become too predictable. (Hi denali!)

If racists like Denali are willing to vote for Obama that will tell you why he’s probably going to be the next president.

I remember reading Stormfront a couple of months ago, and the White Boyz at Stormfront (a site on the intertubes that’s a bit milder in its racism than PFF or the Daily Kos are) were MORE SYMPATHETIC to Obama than to Rudy Giuliani.

And that’s just weird.

But when you think about it, Justin Raimondo’s recent jump from Paul to Obama will tell you something.

Raimondo’s living in a fantasy world where Obama’s going to take on the “Lobby”, where a little neocon anxiety over Zbigniew Brzezinski’s praise for Walt and Mersheimer cancels out Obama’s obvious similarities to Hillary and McCain on supporting Israel.

117. marisacat - 23 February 2008

ms xeno mentioned to me that the most redneck racist rude mean white boyz on Live Journal are for Obama.

He LONG AGO sent messages he’d be no trouble. The Sixties were a problematical era … and yessir, it is not good to rabble rouse, or not tip the waiter enough. Or use the wrong fork for the salad. All but.

I find the packaging pretty predictable.

America wants to be told it is good, that it can regain an illusion. So he lobs the Holy Hosts imprinted iwth his image to the open waiting mouths..

about it……..

118. Hair Club for Men - 23 February 2008

ms xeno mentioned to me that the most redneck racist rude mean white boyz on Live Journal are for Obama.

They also grew up watching the Cosby show and had Michael Jordon posters on their dorm room walls. They make very carefull distinctions between “white people” and “niggers”.

This has no reflection on Obama (who, once again, I sort of admire for the brilliant campaign he’s run) but still…he’s a “black person” and not a “nigger” to the white boyz.

The one thing, however, that both Ron Paul and Obama have shown us is how to run a presidential campaign on grass roots fervor and small donations.

Instead of sticking its head in the sand, the genuine left should learn from them.

119. marisacat - 23 February 2008


surely you know i Populate the exotic left.

oh please, barack obama the presidential candidiate is a commodity. Ron Paul is a certain type in this country… and most importantly no one will be monitoring his accumulated haul too closely. One reason for these “maverick” runs.

This country will have to come to starvation for change of any sort. They moo well, too many of them. Skin their own hides and cure the leather… The so called left can just chill til then. Or continue as is.

Plenty of local ground level grass roots work any one who wishes to be involved, has the time can do.

The big picture waits.

120. Hair Club for Men - 23 February 2008

Here’s a thread at Stormfront.

See any difference between IT and Gilroy?


121. Hair Club for Men - 23 February 2008

oh please, barack obama the presidential candidiate is a commodity. Ron Paul is a certain type in this country… and most importantly no one will be monitoring his accumulated haul too closely. One reason for these “maverick” runs.

Partly true but if the left found some of that ability to raise funds and organize, we’d all be better off.

YES, it’s easier for Paul or Obama, but that doesn’t mean we can’t learn from their competance in organizing.

122. marisacat - 23 February 2008

nu thred……….



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