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“The Lust of the Eye” 4 June 2008

Posted by marisacat in 2008 Election, Inconvenient Voice of the Voter, Iran, Iraq War, Israel/AIPAC, WAR!.

US Army in Tal Afar

From Tom Dispatch, Chris Hedges on war, our wars:

The Legions of the Lost and Damned

War is the pornography of violence. It has a dark beauty, filled with the monstrous and the grotesque. The Bible calls it “the lust of the eye” and warns believers against it. War allows us to engage in lusts and passions we keep hidden in the deepest, most private interiors of our fantasy lives. It allows us to destroy not only things and ideas but human beings.

In that moment of wholesale destruction, we wield the power of the divine, the power to revoke another person’s charter to live on this Earth. The frenzy of this destruction — and when unit discipline breaks down, or when there was no unit discipline to begin with, “frenzy” is the right word — sees armed bands crazed by the poisonous elixir that our power to bring about the obliteration of others delivers. All things, including human beings, become objects — objects either to gratify or destroy, or both. Almost no one is immune. The contagion of the crowd sees to that.

Human beings are machine-gunned and bombed from the air, automatic grenade launchers pepper hovels and neighbors with high-powered explosive devices, and convoys race through Iraq like freight trains of death. These soldiers and Marines have at their fingertips the heady ability to call in airstrikes and firepower that obliterate landscapes and villages in fiery infernos. They can instantly give or deprive human life, and with this power they become sick and demented. The moral universe is turned upside down. All human beings are used as objects. And no one walks away uninfected.

War thrusts us into a vortex of pain and fleeting ecstasy. It thrusts us into a world where law is of little consequence, human life is cheap, and the gratification of the moment becomes the overriding desire that must be satiated, even at the cost of another’s dignity or life. […]

Iraqi dead

“A lot of guys really supported that whole concept that, you know, if they don’t speak English and they have darker skin, they’re not as human as us, so we can do what we want,” said Spc. Josh Middleton, who served in the 82nd Airborne in Iraq. “And you know, 20 year-old kids are yelled at back and forth at Bragg, and we’re picking up cigarette butts and getting yelled at every day for having a dirty weapon. But over here, it’s like life and death. And 40 year-old Iraqi men look at us with fear and we can — do you know what I mean? — we have this power that you can’t have. That’s really liberating. Life is just knocked down to this primal level of, you know, you worry about where the next food’s going to come from, the next sleep or the next patrol, and to stay alive.

“It’s like, you feel like, I don’t know, if you’re a caveman,” he added. “Do you know what I mean? Just, you know, I mean, this is how life is supposed to be. Life and death, essentially. No TV. None of that bullsh-t.” ::snip::

Shall the rise of the wars slow? Or, shall the revelations of the coming years be more – and more war.

I am reminded that the Greeks call whomever rules America, planetarchis, Ruler of the Planet.

May 2003 – Iraqi and US Army

[P]rophets are not those who speak of piety and duty from pulpits — few people in pulpits have much worth listening to — but are the battered wrecks of men and women who return from Iraq and speak the halting words we do not want to hear, words that we must listen to and heed to know ourselves. They tell us war is a soulless void. They have seen and tasted how war plunges us into perversion, trauma, and an unchecked orgy of death. And it is their testimonies that have the redemptive power to save us from ourselves. […]


UPDATE, 2:30 am Thursday

Oh yeah…

With water being diverted upstream, the Kern River in Bakersfield, Calif., is expected to remain dry. Reserve wells were opened this week in Kern County. [David McNew/Getty Images]

LOS ANGELES — Its reservoir levels receding and its grounds parched, California has fallen officially into drought, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger said Wednesday, warning that the state might be forced to ration water to cities and regions if conservation efforts did not improve.

The drought declaration — the first for the state since 1991 — includes orders to transfer water from less dry areas to those that are dangerously dry. Mr. Schwarzenegger also said he would ask the federal government for aid to farmers and press water districts, cities and local water agencies to accelerate conservation. Drought conditions have hampered farming, increased water rates throughout California and created potentially dangerous conditions in areas prone to wildfires.

The declaration comes after the driest California spring in 88 years, with runoff in river basins that feed most reservoirs at 41 percent of average levels. It stops short of a water emergency, which would probably include mandatory rationing.  […]

Some of us are unsure how to save “more”.  I took the shortages in the 70s to heart and never really stopped saving…  I do remember tho, that as everyone got into it (we did not want to be guilty of “water wars”!) and saved water, at least here in Northern California, we got bills with surcharges for “under use”.

Here we are in one part of our ceaseless cycle of drought, rain, flood, mudslide, denuded hillside, gully and ravine, then wind and fire….

A bill to require Californians to cut water use 20 percent recently passed the Assembly. The bill, which requires Senate approval, puts most of the onus on residents, and little on the agriculture industry, underscoring tension over conservation between city dwellers and farmers, who consume most of the state’s water.

Across the state, many districts and municipalities are instituting or considering recycling, rationing and higher fees for excessive use. For instance, Los Angeles officials recently announced their intentions to begin using heavily cleansed sewage to increase drinking water supplies.

Heavily cleansed sewage as drinking water… did not take me long:   I got the joke..


1. marisacat - 4 June 2008

BTW, Jim Lindberg at Volokh has a good overview of the Great Michelle Tape story.

2. liberalcatnip - 4 June 2008

Meet Spc. Josh Middleton, future PTSD victim once he realizes what he’s done.

3. liberalcatnip - 4 June 2008

dkos buzzkill: Is anyone else bummed about the AIPAC speech? lol (Out damned troll!)

4. liberalcatnip - 4 June 2008

Stephen Colbert to Bob Barr: ‘What’s the difference between you and Ralph Nader besides the fact that you obviously own a comb?’

lol (sorry, ms x)

5. marisacat - 4 June 2008

Oh I am chuckling… not that I should dare to laugh at the latest hot “new new thing”… but Nightline is on a tour of the HQs for Obama… Wright of ABC is sitting with one of the founders of Facebook (24 and really really pale), being shown how the internet and e-reach (I made that up) did it for them… and he uses a GOTV page for……………………………………………………


6. marisacat - 4 June 2008


TNR loved the AIPAC speech. I think Big Buxom Party Tent/Jeralyn did as well.

7. liberalcatnip - 5 June 2008

Big Buxom Party Tent

rofl..you are just too priceless sometimes. 🙂

8. marisacat - 5 June 2008

LOL I had not been there for a few days and a quick run thru the posts made me think that… He’s for HIllary as VP but Jeralyn seems to get that it would so so so not work.

What a hoot!

9. moiv - 5 June 2008

A John Kass column from last month that I’d missed: Obama unstained by Chicago Way

It is all about context. The presumptive Democratic presidential candidate’s politics were born in Chicago. Yet he is presented to the nation as not truly being of this place, as if he floats just above the political corruption here, uninfected, untouched by the stain of it or by any sin of commission or omission. It is all so very mystical.


“I know there are those like John Kass who would like me to decry Chicago politics more frequently, and I’ll leave that to his editorial commentary,” Obama said.

Not the politics, just the corruption, I said then, wishing silently that he had decried it all, that he’d stood up years ago and pointed to the list of sleazy deals, pointed an angry finger at the Duffs, the white, Outfit-connected drinking buddies of Daley who received $100 million in affirmative action contracts through City Hall.

That’s an easy political commercial for the Republicans: Mobbed-up white guys party at the old Como Inn with Daley, and they get $100 million in city affirmative action contracts and Daley doesn’t know how it happened and Obama endorses the mayor in the name of reform.

Obama had nothing to do with the Duff deal. But he kept mum. He has endorsed Daley, endorsed Daley’s hapless stooge Todd Stroger for president of the Cook County Board. These are not the acts of a reformer, but of a guy who, as we say in Chicago, won’t make no waves and won’t back no losers.


As a candidate, Obama will do what he has to do to win. My argument is not with him–but with the national political media pack that refuses to look closely at what Chicago is. They’re fixated on what it was, and they think it’s clean now.

And they’ve spent years crafting, then cleaving to their eager and trembling Obama narrative, a tale of great yearning, almost mythic and ardently adolescent, a tale in which Obama is portrayed as a reformer, a dynamic change agent about to do away with the old thuggish politics.

It’s as if Axelrod channeled it, wearing a peaked Merlin hat. Obama is a South Sider and does not hail from Camelot or Mt. Olympus or the lush forests of mythical Narnia.


For an answer as to when pundits will ever put Illinois corruption in context, I called on Tom Bevan, executive director of the popular political Web site Real Clear Politics (which directs readers to my column on occasion) and a Chicagoan.

“To a large degree, the media has accepted much of the Obama narrative thus far,” Bevan told me. “He’s risen so quickly, but his history hasn’t been bogged down with an association of Chicago politics and I can’t tell you why exactly, except perhaps that some may have bought into the established narrative and can’t separate themselves from it.”

“And I don’t know if the country understands just how corrupt the system is in Illinois. People don’t see it. They’re flying over us, cruising at 30,000 feet,” Bevan said.

Our Chicago politics sure must seem sweet from that high altitude as journalists fly by. From up there, our politics must smell pretty, like vanilla beans in a jar, or lavender potpourri: you know, something truly authentic and real.

10. marisacat - 5 June 2008

LOL .. if people think Arkansas was a swamp that the Clintons crawled from……………. etc.

I’ll laugh for a few days over that one.

There was a very early point, early fall 03, when most of the home state divisions (with in the Dem party and the left in VT) related to Howard just drew back from feeding the media. And it occurred to me then that while politics is a swamp, some places really are swampier than others. Bigger snakes, 😉

11. liberalcatnip - 5 June 2008

9. Very true. I’ve had to seek out articles about his Chicago days and, lo and behold, they’re almost all in the Chicago papers. The rest of the MSM just mentions his “community organizer” spiel and that’s about it – although CNN did have a special investigation segment last week where they interviewed at least one of the politicians he stepped over along the way – and there are a number of them. (I didn’t watch the whole thing. It was on Anderson Cooper’s show, I think.) I think the media missed the boat on that saga because fellow Dems, no matter how disgruntled, might not want to speak up now if they have to feel the wrath of the party and the Daley machine for not supporting the nominee against McSurge.

And, seriously, I have yet to see this “new politics” model that Obama has supposedly invented – other than using the tubes as his ATM.

12. wu ming - 5 June 2008

hedges really is a phenomenal writer. war is a force that gives us meaning was one of those books that opened a whole lot of doors in my perception of the world, of our sick, mad culture.

if only powers had had the guts to look in the mirror a bit closer than she did. hillary’s a monster, no doubt about that, but collectively, as a nation, we’re like the definition of arendt’s banality of evil.

13. marisacat - 5 June 2008

hmm if CSTAR is around to see this… somehow I managed to noticed this photo on AOL, a different, closer shot of the bycicle smash up. It REALLY is quite an accident.

This is the caption…

A car collides into cyclists participating in a race in Mexico’s northern border city of Matamoros, Sunday June 1, 2008. At least one person was killed and 14 injured when a driver slammed into a bicycle race. (AP Photo/Jose Fidelino Vera Hernandez)

14. NYCO - 5 June 2008

And, seriously, I have yet to see this “new politics” model that Obama has supposedly invented – other than using the tubes as his ATM.

I thought Dean invented that?

15. NYCO - 5 June 2008

On water conservation — God knows Eastern residents shouldn’t talk considering how the waters have been polluted here since time immemorial — but at some point you have to wonder if Americans should be living in certain areas if the water just ain’t there.

It’s ironic. The Rust Belt continues to lose population, yet that’s where a lot of the water is. Population loss means less political power to pass things like the Great Lakes Nondiversion Compact. And it isn’t beyond imagining that thirsty people living full-blown American lifestyles where they shouldn’t be living them (i.e., the desert) will demand a huge straw to suck the Lakes dry.

Why don’t people just move back to where the water is? Why the love affair with dried-up territory, the overbuilding there? (are people really that turned off by a little snow?) Granted, a population shift to well-hydrated regions would produce its own conservation challenges, but why is reliance on oil such a pet issue and not water conservation? Why do people living water-gluttonous lifestyles in the desert get a free pass, while people driving Hummers get crucified?

16. JJB - 5 June 2008

Robert Kennedy was shot 40 years ago today. He lingered for a little over 24 hours before dying.

17. liberalcatnip - 5 June 2008

I thought Dean invented that?

Good point. And, of course, Al Gore invented the internets so I guess he’s the godfather in all of this.

18. bayprairie - 5 June 2008

comment in a thread to this post at BAR

written by Mike , June 04, 2008

I watched Obama’s speech at the aipac forum this morning. In less than 24 hours after being named the dem nominee, there Obama was, on his knees swearing allegence to the racist, aparthied, terrorist occupying force that is israel. He never acknowleged the humanity of the Palestinians. Also, it was astounding to hear him repeat some of the racist propaganda used to justify the contiued occupation of Palestine and support for a possible attack on Iran. I makes one wonder, what kind of education did he get at harvard & yale?

comment in a thread at dkos

While I don’t agree with a portion of … (2+ / 0-)

…Obama’s position as stated to AIPAC, I think you are right about this. I don’t think any of us has any gauge with which we can say this isn’t what he believes. So “pandering” is too strong a criticism.

by Meteor Blades on Wed Jun 04, 2008 at 11:47:03 PM PDT

19. JJB - 5 June 2008

Just tried to watch that McCain speech, had to give up about 5.5 minutes in because he was putting my feet to sleep. They are in a quandry, the meds he’s no doubt taking (both to temper his temper and to numb the constant pain he must be in) are turning him into at best a cure for a insomnia, at worst, a doddering and tired old man with severe diction problems. This is only going to get worse as the campaign marathon begins — by mid-October, he’s going to look like the least vigorous member of the sort of retirement communities that have sprung up in his home state (or at least the state he represents in the Senate).

20. lucid - 5 June 2008

Just a side note – the Hedge’s title is a twist on Hegel’s take on war in Philosophy of Right and one of the principle reasons why, despite the seemingly brilliant merger of Kantian rationalism with Aristotelian historicism found in his idea of the dialectic, I read Hegel as the pivotal precursor to modern rightist movements.

21. lucid - 5 June 2008

… and that wasn’t a very popular view at the graduate philosophy program established by Hannah Arent. Then again, Arent somehow found it in herself to forgive her former lover Heideger for being philosopher of the reich.

22. lucid - 5 June 2008

sorry, dropped the ‘d’ – arendt.

23. CSTAR - 5 June 2008


When I saw the picture at PFF, I did check a link in the second or third comment in the thread. I was horrified, since I do go cycling.

There are enough crashes, smashups and bridge collapses to go around.

Talking of bridge failures, I read in this morning’s paper, another MN bridge was closed yesterday adding 70 miles each way for some commuters.

24. ms_xeno - 5 June 2008

Re, #4:

Barr is Nader is McKinney is… whoever is not a Media-Approved Us. But enough about policies, let’s make funny ha-has about your hair.

paine at SMBIVA could spin a nice poem from that, I’ll wager.

25. marisacat - 5 June 2008


well the core issue here, for decades (see Chinatown), is water diversion, aside from “sprawl”. Water diversion for agriculture. Diversion from North to South…

I’d be fine with a dial back on the Central Valley ag business, but, as the breadbasket for the nation, that involves more than CA residents.

Despite what people may think, California is desert only in some places. And we have heard of, and live in, snow as well. Sierra snowpack and runoff is part of CA natural water resource. Topographically, we have most terrain here.

Drought is a serious issue in lots of places in America. Alabama, MS. Georgia and FL have water battles as well.

26. liberalcatnip - 5 June 2008

24. They did have a discussion about the so-called war on drugs and other issues but Colbert’s a comedian so jokes are to be expected, obviously. And I reserve the right to be the hair and fashion police so I thought it was funny. 🙂

27. marisacat - 5 June 2008


I thought BAR had as stellar line up this week… I read the top post from Glen Ford and scanned a couple of others.


28. marisacat - 5 June 2008

sorry for the delay, just noticed them…

lucid and JJB just out of moderation…

29. ms_xeno - 5 June 2008

#24, I’ve seen Colbert once and found that a little went a long, long way. Same with Stewart. These guys are like the Buffy of “liberal/prog” media. I watch otherwise-rational people genuflect before them and all I want to do is get a garden hose and start spraying the faithful before they immolate themselves in a fit of tasteless ecstasy.

And, yeah, it bugs me that whether one’s a blogger on LJ or a trendy big shot in “progressive” media, it’s very important apparently to constantly exaggerate miniscule differences between the Big Two Parties or between Clinton II and Obama but to totally smooth over and lock away any differences among opposition candidates. Hey. They’re OPPOSITION !! They’re CRAAAZEEE !! ZOMG LOOK AT THEIR HAIR !!! NO DEBATES FOR YOU !!

Ah, screw Colbert and screw his handlers and promoters, too. I guess their Holy Writ about the place of opposition is good for laughs, but the joke is always on me whether I decide to laugh at it or not.

30. NYCO - 5 June 2008

The amnesia I see about the Dean campaign is pretty amazing. Of course, we are far beyond Iowa now, but why are people running around acting like Obama invented Internet fundraising or something? Weird.

31. marisacat - 5 June 2008



Well his chief strategist and handler (Axelrod) is also a mouthpiece for Daley and is used a lot to stand in front of a camera and say “Mayor Daley has done nothing illegal.. blah blah blah”…

and people have not caught on to that shared resource either…

32. marisacat - 5 June 2008

The Cockburn piece, ion Iraq, in The Independent, it’s been around, but if no one caught up to it.

33. NYCO - 5 June 2008

I have to wonder if McCain’s inertness is really a brilliant strategy. Eventually the media will get tired of kicking an old man and will turn their attention to kicking Obama. Which will then cause Clinton to be burned in effigy, again.

34. liberalcatnip - 5 June 2008

29. At least people like Stewart and Colbert give third party/independent candidates some air time. That’s more than can be said about the MSM. And I have to say that I think you’re giving Colbert short shrift if you haven’t seen his interview with Barr. I enjoy sarcasm and I think he and Stewart do a fine job of mocking both of the big 2 parties.

35. marisacat - 5 June 2008

left i on the news on the ObamaRama AIPAC speech

I caught this as well in the listening, as opposed to the text (I had posted the link here to the text as delivered, thanks to CNN…)

Update: A friend who watched the speech (as opposed to reading the transcript as I did) reports:

I watched some of Obama’s speech, and one thing I noticed was that he repeated the phrase “I will do everything in my power to prevent Iran from acquiring a nuclear weapon” (or words to that effect) twice, and then repeated “everything” as a one-word sentence, and then looked around at the crowd as if to say, “get it.”

36. ms_xeno - 5 June 2008

#34- catnip, I make it a hobby to always demand more than I’m getting.

😉 Okay, it’s not the Jester Squad’s fault if (and I’m not sure it’s true), they’re the only ones who want to give Indies any face time. Or if Indies don’t want to face the jackals they’d inevitably encounter with a supposedly “legit” pundit in the other chair. Those are systemic problems that need to be addressed on a much grander scale.

But it still annoys me that by default in this scenario, opposition itself is constrained in a sort of “ironic” comic relief ghetto. Really, really annoys me.

The one Colbert episode I saw featured Lou Dobbs. So that was Populism of the Right Wing variety in a sort of “ironic” comic relief ghetto. To be honest, I thought Dobbs thoroughly upstaged his host, not because the former’s a good guy. Obviously that’s not the case, but because he talked about class-based frustrations among White working-class voters on the ground in a systemic way I don’t notice too often on talk shows when I bother to watch them. Dobbs seemed to stress very strongly the fact that his fans know they’re being cheated and they can’t get at the bigwigs who are cheating them, and everyone involved knows it.

Does Colbert ever have Dobbs’ Left-wing counterparts on his show ? Do people like Colbert even acknowledge that you can support Populist ideals without having to engage in racist Hispanic-baiting, and the like ? Or does it serve the purpose of the supposed liberal media to yoke together racism and Populism permanently, all the better to dismiss the latter while paying only the most superficial attention to ameliorating the former ?

Oh, and I admit that Colbert playing his own Spanish-Speaking counterpart and entering onstage through prop “barbed wire” was worth a chuckle.

37. wilfred - 5 June 2008

Love Love Love Stephen Colbert. He’s brilliant and had the chutzpah to give the funniest and boldest standup in front of Bush, Cheney and the entire DC establishment. They were livid at having to see themselves vivisected in public, it was a joy to behold.

Almost as nice was seeing Obama lead Liebermann to the Senate wall and give him 5 minutes of leaning into, a nice start. I’d like to do alot more than muscle into Joementum but the fact that Bambi O got him on the defensive day 1 was impressive. Hammer him if you want but it was ballsy and a helluva lot more than anyone else has done to old Joe lately.

38. marisacat - 5 June 2008

Fine iwth me, as long as I can skip class… LOL

“I am like a Rorschach test,” he said in an interview with The New York Times. “Even if people find me disappointing ultimately, they might gain something.”

I am reading around that Arianna ws on Leno last night, chatting up Hagel, for his great anti war stance.

I suppose she realises he is 100% pro life and did indeed vote for the war.

39. mattes - 5 June 2008

More wars for Israel:

Germany’s First Neo-Con Conference Pushes for War on Iran


40. liberalcatnip - 5 June 2008

36. I have to admit that Dobbs does, indeed, speak for the working class but he goes to far in his anti-immigration tirades, afaic.

Does Colbert ever have Dobbs’ Left-wing counterparts on his show ?

He’s had a wide variety of lefties on his show. I’d have to look at his guest list to give you examples of whom I might consider to be comparable to Dobbs (bad memory).

Do people like Colbert even acknowledge that you can support Populist ideals without having to engage in racist Hispanic-baiting, and the like ?

I’d say yes.

Or does it serve the purpose of the supposed liberal media to yoke together racism and Populism permanently, all the better to dismiss the latter while paying only the most superficial attention to ameliorating the former ?

I won’t say that Colbert & Stewart are “populist”, as far as that goes, and your question is something I honestly haven’t given much thought to – especially as far as their schtick goes, but Colbert’s sarcastic “I don’t see race” spiel is definitely meant to address racism. It’s kind of hard to discuss this with someone who doesn’t watch their shows because there are subtle and blatant examples of how they address both issues.

It’s not like I’m their number one fan but, after a day of watching the supposedly intelligent talking heads going on and on with what passes for political analysis these days, they’re a welcome relief because they’re willing to point out the absurdities that too many people accept as being unapproachable or that they’re unwilling to oppose in any strong, meaningful way.

I think this quote sums it up: “Sarcasm: intellect on the offensive”

41. CSTAR - 5 June 2008


Makes me want to rant. In Spanish.

42. marisacat - 5 June 2008

My perception of Dobbs is, in the broadest sense, yes, he is populist (even Gingrich started as a Southern Populist, LOL) but a lot of pro working class or bashing both parties he does to “feed” his viewing base as he relentlessly for many years now, spoons out the immigrant hatred. Turner recently said on Rose that if he were there, Dobbs would be called in, told to cool it on the hatred and inciteful language. And I doubt Glenn Beck would be there at all.

I would nto have known of the rabid white organising at the border (forget the name of the group at the moment) but for Dobbs, I learned of it there before it reached MSM, by many months.

43. marisacat - 5 June 2008

Minutemen… how could i forget. That is the name of the rabid whites who volunteer patrol the S border

44. marisacat - 5 June 2008

oh bad news.. la Kerry and Chuck Hagel have a joint op piece in WSJ on “time to talk to Syria”.

That would be so like the Democrats, walk a full on conservative pro lifer under the Dem banner into the WH.

45. marisacat - 5 June 2008

here is the link, fwiw to the Kerry Hagel hump. It really is puff and air with fluff on top.

46. ms_xeno - 5 June 2008

The immigrant hatred is/has seeped in everywhere. Including here in Prog Mecca. Not that it had far to seep.

But it serves Social Darwinists under a thin sugar coating, like Obama, very well if they can paint Populism and racism as an inseparable team. Whereas of course there’s nothing about unfettered Capitalism that fosters racism. [snerk] Oh, no. Of course not.

As to #44, I wonder what Pollitt is whining about today ? :p Probably about whatever Marcotte is whining about, only with less pop culture padding… :p

47. wilfred - 5 June 2008

43. Any word from Tuston?

48. marisacat - 5 June 2008

Re Tuston

no last is what I related couple three months ago.. maybe more (time flies)… i searched around, found his father (tuston had long ago sent me the link to their wood designs website). Sent off an email to please let Tuston know people were worried, and was he OK. Father emailed that Tuston fine, send him an email or call him, provided the home number.

I sent off an email with the exchange with the father attached. Never did hear.

49. wilfred - 5 June 2008

I’m just glad he’s ok. I was worried there for awhile.

50. wilfred - 5 June 2008

By the way, I saw a T-shirt on the way to the gym this morning:


51. CSTAR - 5 June 2008


Oh no.

52. liberalcatnip - 5 June 2008

Speaking of missing people, where’s Boohoohoo man?

53. liberalcatnip - 5 June 2008

50. lol…the first letters say it all: OOO… shiny objects

54. wilfred - 5 June 2008

51. Funny, my thought when i saw it was “Oh My…..”.

55. ms_xeno - 5 June 2008

The middle “O” is the 3rd Eye which can read you future !!!!

[cue theremin music]

56. ms_xeno - 5 June 2008

cats + theremin = Prelude To The Booze-Sweaty Nightmares Of Several PFFters, who shall remain nameless.

bwa-ha-ha-ha-hahhh !!

57. marisacat - 5 June 2008

I think it is a line up of Holy Hosts, Obama commemorative wafers, soon to be dispensed at the rallies.

Sorry, the whole “Yes We Can!!” and USA!! USA!! chanting, as well as “Race Doesn’t Matter!!” (or whatever the wording) repeated mantra at the big rallies has always turned me off

58. wilfred - 5 June 2008

55. LOL, maybe Oprah should change her opening theme to a theremin one!

and as our VP she could still do her monthly Book Club.

59. wilfred - 5 June 2008

repeated mantra at the big rallies has always turned me off

yes Mcat. But enquiring minds want to know who and what turn you on 😉

60. marisacat - 5 June 2008

well LOL nothing to do with authoritarianism, demagoguery and pandering. Not much to do with mass rallies or stadium sports (same thing as stadium rallies) either…

……………………. 8)

61. liberalcatnip - 5 June 2008

I heard that Barack will be changing the titles of his cabinet members to “Apostle”. And then there’ll be “UnderApostles” as well, natch.

62. liberalcatnip - 5 June 2008

Shorter Candy Crowley Obama interview:

So, you’re under a lot of public pressure from some people to choose Hillary Clinton as your VP. Are you going to pick her? Huh? Huh? Well are you? You can tell me, you know. C’mon, don’t be shy. Hillary – VP…your choice or not? When are you going to decide? TELL ME!!

63. ms_xeno - 5 June 2008

#61, With Holy UnderApostleWear as well ?

[imagines the old Underoos jingle from the 1970s, but this time played on a huge, er, pipe organ.]

Wilfred, (#58) nobody loves a good book club more than I. Or is it me ? My money’s either Zell Miller or Joe Biden for veep, though.

But there’s always the option of putting Oprah in charge of the NEA.

64. James - 5 June 2008

The whole Michelle Obama “whitey” thing has been quite the internet clusterfuck. I’m betting my life’s savings (the whole plug nickel) on it being a hoax. Wading through the comments at Larry Johnson’s excuse of a blog has been quite the experience though – name your favorite Obama urban legend, and you’ll find it there, along with all sorts of stuff that makes me think I landed on a Stormfront message board. Freaky.

65. wilfred - 5 June 2008

61. Well, at least this time the women won’t be erased/altered like the originals were. Poor Mary Magdalene went from most trusted associate (or more) to hooker when the men wrote that book (or when the men lopped off the women’s contributions).

#63 I’m a big reader, bedside stacked with books always. Our VP Oprah is talking to Ken Follett now about The Pillars of the Earth (which i liked but not nearly as much as her Oprahness).

66. marisacat - 5 June 2008

LOL The “ex CIA Democrats and Others” are bunkered on their own Masada.

that place is hilarious. Think I posted a link at the top of this thread to a good post at Volokh that pulls together the various strands of the MO stories…

BTW, with no specifics, it reached to Charlie Rose last night, Halperin alluded to what might be “out there” w/r/t MO and Charlie said let’s talk about it.

One thing I will say, Camp Obama deals badly then slowly then stumblebumble thru the big stuff. Good luck.

More hilariously Errol Morris of NY Daily NEws seemed to think that Oprah could be a surrogate wife, better representative, better whatever, on the trail.

Oh stuff it … who are these people.

67. wilfred - 5 June 2008

Errol needs to get a clue!

I’m just as interested in McCain’s skeletons. The extra-marital affairs, the fact that he was still married when he was futzing around with Cyndeeeee and all the double dealings in Congress, not to mention the Keating scandal. Has this man really been vetted? I don’t think so.

68. CSTAR - 5 June 2008

I’m beginning to wonder whether in the “clusterfucknet”, the existence of a video of purporting to be a peeping alien in Denver (reported on CNN) got mixed up other themes floating around about Michelle Obama.
Aliens in Obama’s Staff!

OT, instead of pastor jokes

Sun Ra, quite a musician. Just heard some of his stuff on KCRW. “The truth about planet earth. It’s a bad truth”

I thought this was remarkable about his refusal to serve in WWII

In court, Blount declared that even alternate service was unacceptable to him, and he debated the judge on points of law and Biblical interpretation. Though sympathetic to Blount, the judge also declared that he was clearly in violation of the law, and was risking forcible induction into the U.S. Military. Blount declared that if he were inducted, he would use his military weapons and training to kill the first high-ranking military officer he could. The judge sentenced Blount to jail (pending draft board and CPS rulings), and then declared “I’ve never seen a nigger like you before;” Blount replied, “No, and you never will again.

69. marisacat - 5 June 2008

McCain is a strange one. As amorphous as exit polling can be, there were some worrisome notes sounded in them for the Democrats… he got some worrisom cross over votes from people who believe abortion should remain legal and who want to end the war. that “maverick” stuff has to be struck down.

They probably should stop talking about how he nearly caucused with the Dems, going Ind., after 00…then the great invitation from Kerry.

It just softens his image.

LOL Good luck to them all.

70. marisacat - 5 June 2008

LOL Obama avail: Asked answered and then Ben Smith explains even reporting on it. However, it is a McClatchy reporter that asked.

Good Luck to them all.

71. ms_xeno - 5 June 2008

What a break for those fickle, fickle lovers of the misogynist horse race. If Obama loses despite Hilary’s scheduled step-aside and despite the probable grudging support of her one-time loyalists, there’ll still be a woman to serve as all-purpose scapegoat: The Wayward Wife Who Wouldn’t Wuv Whitey. Or some such b.s.

72. marisacat - 5 June 2008

Gee… ”forced resignations of both mil and civilian heads of the AF” via TNH.

Shake rattle and rolllllllllllllllllllllllllll.

73. Arcturus - 5 June 2008

68. CSTAR – funny, I posted that story here last year – that was in ’42 in Alabama of all places – a few pages later in Szwed’s bio, 1943, there’s this from his medical exams at Civilian Public Service Camp #48 in Marienville, PA. :

“In a psychiatric report with elements which echo those of Lester Young, Charlie Parker, Charles Mingus, and perhaps hundreds of talented young black men of the era, he was described as a ‘psychopathic personality,’ but also as a ‘well-educated colored intellectual’ who was subject to neurotic depression and sexual perversion.”
John Szwed, p. 46, Space Is The Place

his composition, “Nuclear War,” on the album A Fireside Chat with Lucifer (1984) is well worth searching out

74. Arcturus - 5 June 2008

from the still relevant Marc Reisner’s Cadillac Desert, pp 5-6:

Desert, semi-desert, call it what you will. The point is that despite heroic efforts and many billions of dollars, all we have managed to do in the arid West is turn a Missouri-size section green — and that conversion has been wrought mainly with nonrenewable groundwater. But a goal of many westerners and of their federal archangels, the Bureau of Reclamation and Corps of Engineers, has long been to double, triple, quadruple the amount of desert that has been civilized and farmed, and now those same people say that the future of a hungry world depends on it, even if it means importing water from as far away as Alaska. What they seem not to understand is how difficult it will be just to hang on to the beachhead they have made. Such a surfeit of ambition stems, of course, from the remarkable record of success we have had in reclaiming the American desert. But the same could have been said about any number of desert civilizations throughout history — Assyria, Carthage, Mesopotamia; the Inca, the Aztec, the Hohokam — before they collapsed.

And it may not even have been drought that did them in. It may have been the salt.

btw, it’s looking like excessive ammonia from Sacramento’s treated sewage may be partly responsible for the nutrient deficiencies in the Delta’s eco-collapse

75. CSTAR - 5 June 2008

The pieces I heard on KCRW.com definitely caught my attention. I’ll look for some of his recordings.

76. CSTAR - 5 June 2008
77. Arcturus - 5 June 2008

meant to add that I believe almonds are the valley’s #1 cash crop – & have posted before about how the biggest performers nowadays in the food industry is what they call ‘convenience’ stuffs – draw yr own conclusions

residents can conserve, conserve, conserve – but only use 80% of CA’s water to begin with – sacred Contracts are in place for cheap water to corporate ag owners – it’s not that they don’t know how to scale back the ag deliveries (w/out ‘hurting our nation’s foodsupply)’ – there’s once again simply NO political will to do so

78. liberalcatnip - 5 June 2008

63. With Holy UnderApostleWear as well ?

Blasphemer! (Got pics?)

Oprah could be a surrogate wife, better representative, better whatever, on the trail.

Can you imagine Michelle putting up with that? Not a chance.

Although Oprah could get that Nat guy to redecorate the WH.

79. Arcturus - 5 June 2008

oops, that’s CA residents only use 20%

80. wu ming - 5 June 2008

going back to NYCO’s question, it’s worth thinking about efficiency of water use as well. while the southwest (and i include southern california, the great stealer of nor cal water, in the southwest) has a lot fo cities that really need to start living like they’re middle eastern type desert settlements and not northern european pastures, california actually uses less water today than it did back in the 70s. not per capita, but as a state.

so as with fuel, efficiency of water use determines carrying capacity, to a degree. those of us who remember the drought in the 80s have developed habits that enable us to live rather more lightly than our counterparts in more water-rich parts of the northeast or great lakes.

one advantage, ironically, in having a snowmelt-irrigation paradigm of ag as opposed to the reliance on seasonal summer rains to water from the heavens, is that a dry year doesn’t destroy farmers the way it does in the midwest or southeast. a series of dry years gets things pretty uncomfortable, and there’s some big climate change problems in the future with the snowline eventually rising up the sierras that we’ll have to think about adapting to, but there isn’t this grapes of wrath withered crops phenomenon when a drought hits.

which is why the incas actually developed ag really early, even in a very erratic, drought-prone climate. snowmelt from the andes provided steady predictable water, even in those 1,000 year droughts of the medieval period (which would damage the west profoundly should one ever happen again).

81. Arcturus - 5 June 2008

from the Planning & Conservation League’s latest newsletter:


Despite our current water crisis and strong support from over thirty-five organizations, including water agencies, cities, and environmental and environmental justice organizations, last Thursday the Assembly failed to pass AB 2153 (Krekorian/Hancock) the Water Efficiency & Security Act.

AB 2153 would have provided a mechanism to ensure that California could continue to grow without further burdening already stressed water supplies and current ratepayers, who face increased water rationing and rising water rates. The measure requires new development to fully mitigate water demands by contributing a modest one-time investment of less than one percent of the cost of new development to water efficiencies and development of new local water supplies.

. . .

82. wu ming - 5 June 2008

responding to arcturus on the salts, i suspect that the collapse of oil and natural gas production in the next couple of decades may ultimately force radically different patterns of ag production before the salt buildup really becomes a critical problem.

if we were smart, we’d be using urban sewage as a resource, “nightsoil” as the chinese used to call it.

but the way they farm will change, one way or another.

83. Arcturus - 5 June 2008

my crystal ball’s done broke, wu ming – I really dunno

not sure I’d recommend it – it was rather tough to watch – but meant to say those opening pix resonate intensely with Brian De Palma’s <iRedacted, which we just watched last night – right at the heart of the pornography of war, de Sade de jour

84. wilfred - 5 June 2008

80. Wu Ming, how does CA use less water than 3 decades ago when the population has increased so much? Is it just more efficient industrial uses? What am i missing?

85. NYCO - 5 June 2008

I can say one thing: my state, New York, will win no prizes when it comes to not wasting water. There are leaks in the NYC reservoir system that are losing 36 million gallons a day. More here:


86. liberalcatnip - 5 June 2008
87. wilfred - 5 June 2008

That Kos piece was hideous. You can attack McCain on so many legitimate things but his teeth? The man had many of his teeth broken during torture and because they aren’t bright and worthy of Hollywood he deserves to be vilified?

If it’s possible to jump the shark repeatedly, Markos is the one to do it.

88. NYCO - 5 June 2008

Hunter’s McCain-mock post the other day at Big Orange is still ricocheting around in my brain…

Look, nobody’s going to mistake you for the svelte black guy with new ideas — you needn’t worry…

Forget Obama’s cheering crowds and inspirational slogans: you must look to appeal to all those people in America who are suspicious of cheering crowds, and positively terrified of inspiration. In this election, those people will be your base.

Well, I’m suspicious of cheering crowds and inspirational slogans, but that doesn’t exactly make me a Republican.

And svelte black guy? “Hey, Virginia — vote Obama! He’s svelte!”

Kos is now mocking McCain’s less-than-pearly-white teeth. Yay team.

89. wu ming - 5 June 2008

people use much less per capita, a lot of water-intensive industries have since relocated or gone bust, and while ag is still a big water waster in many cases, there are still a significant number of farms that have shifted to drip irrigation and other smarter water practices, especially newer orchards and vinyards, etc.

but i suspect a whole lot of the reduction is on the urban side of things, stuff like low flush toilets and low flow showerheads. that and being disallowed from using sources like mono lake, and getting gradually squeezed out of the colorado system (and recently, the delta water as well) has made so cal much better with water use. the problem for them is that future efficienccies will be tougher to squeeze out; the central valley really is the place that needs to adopt better water practices, both in ag and urban consumers. just getting rid of non-recreational lawns in traffic medians, office parks, landscaping, etc. would yield huge amounts of water. and then there’s the perennial talk about recycling wastewater, that may get a real boost if this drought gets any more intense by next winter.

90. liberalcatnip - 5 June 2008

The man had many of his teeth broken during torture and because they aren’t bright and worthy of Hollywood he deserves to be vilified?


Like I said, they like shiny objects.

“Hey, Virginia — vote Obama! He’s svelte!”

Now there’s a bumpersticker. lol

91. wilfred - 5 June 2008

Thanks for that WM, you are a (low water use!) fountain of knowledge.

92. Madman in the Marketplace - 5 June 2008

New trailer for Gonzo, the HST documentary coming out soon:

From Oscar-wining director Alex Gibney and producer Graydon Carter comes a probing look into the uncanny life of national treasure and gonzo journalism inventor Dr. Hunter S. Thompson. A fast moving, wildly entertaining documentary with an iconic soundtrack, the film addresses the major touchstones in Thompson’s life-his intense and ill fated relationship with the Hell’s Angels, his near-successful bid for the office of sheriff in Aspen in 1970, the notorious story behind the landmark Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, his deep involvement in Senator George McGovern’s 1972 presidential campaign, and much more. Narrated by Johnny Depp.

93. marisacat - 5 June 2008

Arcturus out of moderation… sorry!



TNH had a segment today on the sewage water reclamation mentioned in the NYT piece, in So Cal.

Will hunt up the link in a bit and put it up.

Not too bad really… 50% of that waste water reclamation will be pumped into lakes to seep into the groundwater.

94. moiv - 5 June 2008

We B N trubble …. BIG trubble.

95. wu ming - 5 June 2008

that principle of spread and absorb is actually one of the reasons why rice i the sac valley is actually a good idea. it recharges the groundwater.

96. wu ming - 5 June 2008

94. holy shit, that does not look good. exponential world, here we come.

97. marisacat - 5 June 2008

oh moiv

that looks like jumping out the window and due to wind going UP – adn dying.

98. marisacat - 5 June 2008

“Ladies and Gentlemen we are going to crash”.

Nothing can change THAT much and it be OK or survivable. What a storm we are in.

And they better put in the shade line for a recession.

99. Madman in the Marketplace - 5 June 2008

Can you imagine Michelle putting up with that?

I don’t think Gail would put up with it, either.

100. liberalcatnip - 5 June 2008

Pass the tissues. Ed McMahon might lose his $10 million house. Maybe Larry King should talk to some REAL people affected by the housing crisis instead of acting as a spokespuppet for poor (and I use that term loosely) Ed.

101. marisacat - 5 June 2008

RE surrogate wife

and btw, those were Errol Morris’ words… very specific. A better wife for the hustings to sell Obama.

On the other hand, Connie (forget her last name) wife of Sherrod Brown says we have learned from 92 and the way Hillary was attacked “won’t be happening”

Guess what Mrs Sherrod Brown, it already is.

It was Al Hunt (just a generic old orgasmic white guy for Obama) Halperin, who is pretty rational these days, Errol Morris and Charlie Rose. And Mrs Sherrod Brown

102. marisacat - 5 June 2008

hmm a planner on local CBS news just said gas may go to 7 before the end of the year.

Sounds very likely.

103. marisacat - 5 June 2008

Obama Meets With Clinton

05 Jun 2008 09:13 pm

According to MSNBC, Sen. Barack Obama ditched his press corps and is meeting right now with Sen. Hillary Clinton at her home in Washington, D.C.

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Where In Washington Is Barack Obama?

05 Jun 2008 08:58 pm

He’s not leaving Dulles with his press corps now…. and the campaign isn’t commenting. Quick… if anyone sees two sets of two armored SUVs and a trail car on Whitehaven Ct., please let me know.

104. Madman in the Marketplace - 5 June 2008
105. liberalcatnip - 5 June 2008

I think Hillary stole Obama’s lunch money too.

106. wilfred - 5 June 2008

Once Hillary goes black, she’ll never go back 🙂

107. liberalcatnip - 5 June 2008

wilfred! 😛

Now they have CNN cameras parked outside of her house. Will there be a Bronco chase too? Popcorn!

108. liberalcatnip - 5 June 2008

And, oops, the meeting wasn’t at her house. Gotta love “reliable” sources.

109. wilfred - 5 June 2008

was the meeting at a 3RD PARTY’S house?

sorry, couldn’t resist!

110. marisacat - 5 June 2008

fwiw ambinder has a post up about the meeting..

2. Which side leaked the existence of the meeting? Barack Obama. After originally refusing to answer reporters questions, the campaign then confirmed that there was a meeting but said they would never divulge the details; then they divulged the details.


111. marisacat - 5 June 2008

and the caucus flips most of the “known” facts about it, from ambinder.

WHo can you trust! I ask you!


112. marisacat - 5 June 2008

New Thread


…………… 8)

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