Since the Democrats effectively disarmed the Republican lock on an image of toughness in the face of terrorism, the old PNAC crowd and their allies haven’t been able to do much other than gripe from the margins and express their desire for further foreign piratical adventures to anybody who’s still listening.
This has been reflected in Francophile draft-dodger Mitt Romney’s tendency to slip into his public pap-burblings his wish to oversee an “American Century”—most recently in an interview today for the Daily Caller:
In foreign policy, I am guided by one overwhelming conviction: This century must be an American Century. In an American Century, America has the strongest economy and the strongest military in the world.
Form an orderly queue over there for the dancing rainbow-farting ponies dole-out.
Former Vice President Dick Cheney took a shot at President Barack Obama late Monday night after it was reported that the president has attended fewer than half of his daily intelligence briefings.
I dunno. It seems to me that if you have a competent staff, actually bothering to, you know, read daily copies of these briefings and listen to their advice rather than chortling over books on goat husbandry and dismissing those advisers with “All right. You’ve covered your ass, now” is probably a step up the scale of administrative competence, but what do I know? Dick has the track record—amirite? Boggle now as he performs a double pike with full pirouette to segue into another hoary campaign talking point:
“If President Obama were participating in his intelligence briefings on a regular basis then perhaps he would understand why people are so offended at his efforts to take sole credit for the killing of Osama bin Laden,” Cheney told The Daily Caller in an email through a spokeswoman.
I won’t respond to such blatant trolling by expressing my wishes for the just fate to befall this revolting shameless war criminal, but it can’t come to soon.
I know I shouldn’t be surprised by anything Dick Cheney says, but sweet, weepin’ Jeebus:
“When I think about the kind of individual I want in the Oval Office in that moment of crisis, who has to make those key decisions, some of them life-and-death decisions, some of them decisions as commander-in-chief, who has the responsibility for sending some of our young men and women into harm’s way, that man is Mitt Romney,” Cheney said, according to The Associated Press.
Let’s review, shall we? The largest terrorist attack in US history occurred on Bush-Cheney’s watch, and they responded so ineptly that the cornered mastermind was able to escape to Pakistan while US troops were ensnared in the longest war in US history. Then Bush-Cheney trumped up another war with a country that had fuck-all to do with the 9/11 attacks, a war that killed tens of thousands of people and drained the US Treasury to no good purpose (unless you’re Halliburton).
And now the wizened old reptile who orchestrated this world-historical clusterfuck has the unmitigated gall to not only dis the dude who is cleaning up his fucking mess, but to render an opinion on who else is fit to send “our young men and women into harm’s way”?
Now we know why Cheney has a bum ticker: His heart was overworked from a lifetime of trying to circulate blood through his freakishly massive balls. Chutzpah? That doesn’t even begin to cover it. Lack of self awareness? There isn’t a negative scale large enough to capture it, even if it extends into infinity.
I’m pretty much a free speech absolutist, but I would make an exception in Cheney’s case. He should be fitted with a shock collar that zaps him every time he utters the words “9/11” or “crisis” or “war” or “commander-in-chief” or “decisions” or “harm’s way.” Better yet, it should just zap the bastard if he opens his yap at all.
Romney’s next fundraising stop: the federal pen in Butler, North Carolina, where he will dine in the prison mess with Bernie Madoff and receive Madoff’s glowing endorsement for his financial acumen.
Vice President Joe Biden kept up the heat on Mitt Romney’s investments at Bain Capital in companies that outsourced on Wednesday, telling a crowd in Dubuque, Iowa, that it went to the core of the governor’s economic philosophy.
“After days of saying nothing in response to our criticism for that policy, the Romney campaign responded, I think yesterday, by saying we just don’t get it, we don’t understand the difference … between offshoring and outsourcing,” Biden said. “If you’re looking for work, that’s a pretty cruel joke.”
He continued with an image straight out of a New Yorker cartoon: “I can picture one guy in my old neighborhood standing next to another guy in the unemployment line and saying, ‘Hey John, did you get offshored or outsourced?’”
Arguing that Romney put outsourcing into practice in public policy, Biden went into an extended riff on a bill he vetoed in Massachusetts as governor that would have prevented state contractors from farming out operations overseas. At issue was a $160,000 contract with Citigroup, which used call centers in India to help manage the state’s food-stamp program. Biden called the measure a “cruel irony.”
“You pick up the phone to call the state of Massachusetts line, a woman picks up, she lost her job, picks up the phone to call the state of Massachusetts about her unemployment benefits and she ends up talking to someone in another country who has a job she could be doing and not have to seek unemployment,” Biden said. “I know it sounds so crazy, but that’s literal. Literally!”
1) Ranked 47th in job growth
2) Suffered the second-largest labor force decline in the nation
3) Lost 14 percent of its manufacturing jobs
4) Experienced “below average” economic growth and was “often near the bottom”
5) Piled on more debt than any other state
For all fans of irony, Pema Levy at TPM describes the Romney campaign’s efforts to spin all this:
Romney Camp Defends Poor Jobs Record: He Inherited A Bad Situation
So I guess we’ll hear no more from them about President Obama playing the “blame game” by referring to the mess he inherited when he took office.
John Bolton, Mr Bush’s ambassador to the United Nations, said it would not be helpful for the Republicans to more vigorously defend the former president’s record, which Democrats have sharply criticised.
Mr Bolton urged Mitt Romney, the party’s nominee to face Mr Obama in November, to focus on the future and resist arguing over whether their last president left behind “a big mess or a little mess”.
“I think people would agree with Obama that he was left with a mess,” Mr Bolton told The Daily Telegraph. “They’re not arguing about that, and that’s why it doesn’t pay for Romney to argue whether it was a big mess or a little mess.
Instead, Mr Bolton said, when faced with the prospect of re-electing Mr Obama, “people are saying OK, you inherited a mess, well what have you done to fix it?”
The Romney Campaign seemed to have walked straight out of the cold war era into a phone conference intended to stress Willard’s foreign policy creds. The results were, well, a little weird. Kinda like Willard come to think of it!
In comments that were eerily reminiscent of John McCain’s frequent gaffes in regards to Czechoslovakia, Romney’s surrogates warned of the “Soviet” threat and Obama’s failure to protect the free world:
Obama is “withdrawing from leading the free world in maintaining stability around the world,” Lehman said. “What Obama calls ‘leading from behind.’”
One of the worst examples, according to Lehman, is happening at the top of the world.
“We’re seeing the Soviets pushing into the Arctic with no response from us. In fact, the only response is to announce the early retirement of the last remaining icebreaker.”
Prosper warned Obama was abandoning America’s eastern European allies — some of which haven’t existed for decades.
“You know, Russia is another example where we give and Russia gets and we get nothing in return,” Prosper said. “The United States abandoned its missile defense sites in Poland and Czechoslovakia, yet Russia does nothing but obstruct us, or efforts in Iran and Syria.”
The conference call, which was apparently timed to rebut Veep Biden’s speech today touting Obama’s actual foreign policy successes, didn’t do a whole lot to increase my confidence in Willard’s potential foreign policy leadership. But no doubt Snowflake Snooki will be all over that push by the “Soviets” into the Arctic!
Breitbart Big Ho editor / Hollywood flop John Nolte dislikes the film “Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close” because – get this – it “exploits 9/11:”
The film’s biggest problem is that, to put it bluntly, it exploits 9/11. Thomas could’ve died just as easily in a plane crash or boat accident without a single element of the story having to change. For Daldry (working off a novel by Jonathan Safran Foer) to use one of the biggest crimes ever committed against this country as a “device” is truly repulsive and a symptom of a Hollywood bubble so impenetrable that a group of people with the power to make a multi-million dollar film actually thought it was okay to say 9/11 is all about …. me.
God, that’s funny, in a “Union Carbide Bhopal executive complains about worker flatulence” kind of way. Has there ever been a group that has exploited a national tragedy to silence opponents and enact a radical, ruinous agenda as efficiently as the modern GOP humped 9/11 for fun and profit? If so, I was mercifully not alive for it.
John Nolte, whose writing recalls the elegance of Nick Nolte’s mug shot, goes on:
According to [Director Stephen] Daldry and company, what 9/11 is about, though, is the opportunity for a nine-year-old “amateur inventor, Francophile, and pacifist” to trot off on a narcissistic journey of self-discovery while banging his precious tambourine and providing his precious voice over and meeting all the precious people in the precious city of New York. And in the film’s most racially patronizing scene, meeting a group of precious Christians who are of course, Black.
And there you have it in a nutshell, ladies and gents. Wingnuts despised New York City before 9/11 for the same reasons they hate Hollywood, and their grievances against it would match up point-for-point with the Talibans’. Except the Taliban probably don’t hate “the Blacks” as much.
(RRNN) Former president and ultramasculine smooth-talker by comparison George H.W. Bush plans to endorse Mitt Romney at an event Thursday in Houston.
Romney spokeswoman Gail Gitcho says the candidate will appear and speak to reporters with the former president, who will seem like a gifted extemporaneous speaker and he-man for the length of the appearance.
Formal backing from the 41st president, who will briefly exude virility and a way with words, is another sign that the Republican Party is uniting behind Romney as pressure builds on challengers Rick Santorum and Newt Gingrich to leave the race. The onetime chief executive is not planning on giving an inspiring barnburner of a speech or making female attendees swoon with his rugged manliness, but will, due to relativity.
The elder Bush has offered encouraging words to Romney throughout the primary season but had withheld a formal endorsement. Former first lady Barbara Bush has formally backed Romney. She recorded automated telephone calls for him during the primary in Ohio before turning to her husband and.breathlessly intoning “hey, lover, I forgot how sexy that voice of yours can be… you can take that shirt off or I can rip it off, your choice.”
Their son, former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, endorsed Romney last week, then called his brother, 43rd president George W. Bush, to give him long-overdue credit for taking a swing at their lionhearted, machismo-dripping father and living to tell the tale.
Word is that former Vice-President Dick Cheney is recuperating after receiving a heart transplant, which at his age, shows impressive access to health care. Regardless of how I, and likely everyone here, feels about the old bastard, I’m sure we can wish his whole family well: his well-educated anti-intellectual Wishnik troll of a wife, and his two daughters, the whiny torture enthusiast and the gay quisling who supports anti-gay politicians. And hopefully, when Cheney is feeling well enough and has recuperated adequately, he can go f…ind something to do with himself.
The RNC’s all-female preview audiences were described as having positive feelings about the ad, but those test results can’t be called definitive as it’s difficult to turn the dial on a Perception Analyzer® when it’s shoved up your hoo-hah.
David Ignatius at WaPo released some tidbits from Osama bin Laden’s personal papers, which were seized after the SEAL team waxed the terror kingpin. I don’t know what I was expecting—a good old-fashioned Batman villain, maybe. But Osama comes across like the Brand Manager of the Sanitary Napkin Category at a backwater Koch Industries health and beauty products division. He fretted about consumer perceptions and brand equity, dispensed fancy titles like “Deputy Emir” to underlings and pulled together annual reports. The banality of evil still surprises.
After President Obama reversed Bush Administration policy and stopped using the phrase “Global War on Terror” to describe the twin clusterfucks in Iraq and Afghanistan and assorted US meddling worldwide, al Qaeda seriously contemplated a corporate identity overhaul in response. They felt that the more narrow focus on their own organization diluted the pan-Muslim jihadi image they were trying to project. It was like everyone was unfriending them on Facebook or something. Score one for President Obama, I suppose.
The big revelation: bin Laden wanted to assassinate President Obama because, according to bin Laden, “he is the head of infidelity and killing him automatically will make [Vice President] Biden take over the presidency… Biden is totally unprepared for that post, which will lead the U.S. into a crisis.” Somewhat hilariously, the papers also reveal that al Qaeda believes Fox News lacks “objectivity.”
The Wingnutosphere isn’t sure what to make of the first revelation. Some are all, “O’dumbo is teh most unpreparered o’neegro evar at leest O’biden is wite thx for nothing o’sama u r a looser!” To a man, they are gleeful that al Qaeda dissed Fox News because obviously it follows that Fox News is the only network that embodies Judeo-Christian values. Or something like that.
One hopes further document dumps don’t reveal Osama’s fondness for “Walker, Texas Ranger” or “WrestleMania” reruns; the resulting plummet in nunchuck and novelty singlet sales might endanger the fragile economic recovery.
Here was my key takeaway from the Osama Papers: The Bearded Boogeyman who caused so much pain and suffering was, at heart, a middle-management marketing hack who happened to traffic in death and misery instead of cheap consumer goods. Had he possessed any true strategic acumen, bin Laden would have sent anonymous gift baskets to the Bush Administration and Fox News, who did more to check “Destroy America” off the al Qaeda to-do list than a thousand bumbling “Deputy Emirs.”
By Gil Mann, Men’s Health Editor (would prefer to be just “Health Editor,” but lady parts, amirite, guys? God knows what’s goin’ on down there)
So after three months you’ve decided it’s time to make good on one of your New Year’s resolutions: a thinner you! That’s great, but in today’s fast-paced world we’re all looking for shortcuts, and it can be tempting to go for a short-term victory instead of doing what’s best for you in the long run.
The key to losing weight is to do so gradually. A precipitous drop in body-mass can result in heart disease and other organ failure; even if such drastic results don’t occur, there are other negative ramifications to consider. By starving yourself you’re putting your entire being into “fight or flight” mode, basically teaching your body to stockpile calories, making it all the more likely that you’ll put the pounds back on, and quickly. This is fairly common knowledge; less well-known are the adverse psychological effects of rapid weight loss.
L-R: Huckabee in 2003, Kevin Spacey in 2010 “Huckabonkers!” SNL skit
My fiancée (a wonderful man) and I are getting married in May, and he invited a mutual friend from our college days—I’ll call her “Joy”—who also happens to be his ex-girlfriend. I’m not jealous of his former flames, but I have it on good authority that she’s still carrying a torch for him, and I’m afraid she might say or do something that will cast a pall over our special day. How can I convey my discomfort without seeming possessive or mistrustful? ~Not A Green-Eyed Bride
A number of options should be considered. How will “Joy” be travelling to the nuptials? If she’ll be using public rail for one or more legs of her trip, a well-timed air strike against a transit hub will buy you peace of mind. If she’s planning on taking a plane, I would suggest going through UN channels to establish a no-fly zone enforced by surface-to-air missiles and a squadron of F-15s ready to scramble at a moment’s notice. A car would make things trickier but by no means impossible; a multi-pronged campaign involving roadblocks, overpass-mounted snipers, and daisy cutters (in the event “Joy” makes it to a parking garage) should suffice. ~Mike
My septuagenarian father-in-law, who is in the initial stages of Alzheimer’s, recently moved in with our family. I love him dearly, but I strongly believe he can’t get the care he needs under our roof. He is often confused and agitated and sometimes lashes out, which we as adults can handle, but I fear it’s too much for our two young boys who can’t understand why “Grampa’s being so mean.” I’ve brought up the idea of placing him into hospice, but my husband insists he’ll be fine where he is and that I’m overreacting. Is he being irrational or am I being selfish? Help! ~Children And Parents Eventually Role-Swap
Old age is not for the faint of heart; many of history’s genocidal monsters have been elderly. I suggest spurring a household “coup,” i.e., have your sons play in and around his room with as much exhuberance as they can muster—all that youthful energy is likely to set him off, and when he unleashes his rage your husband will finally see how untenable the situation is. Soon he’ll be calling the orderlies (AKA “Gators on the ground”) to take Grampa off to the nursing home, and you’ll be much happier knowing the family patriarch is being looked after in a facility attuned to his needs. Then drop a daisy cutter on it. ~Mike
I’m a confirmed bachelor and a man of simple tastes (bottled beer is about as “classy” as it gets). I don’t entertain much—when I have buddies over for Super Bowl Sunday, I always use the “good” plastic bowl for Doritos, but the Four Seasons my apartment ain’t. Anyway, I somehow let my coworkers talk me into hosting a dinner party, and they’re a well-heeled bunch, so i’m hoping you can help me avoid embarrassment. One of the guests will be taking care of the food (she’s tasted my cooking), so I’m just looking for some tips on how to set up the dining area for a swanky multi-course meal. ~Puttin’ On The Ritz (Crackers)
The salad fork should be placed to the left of military force, which should never be taken off the table. ~Mike
This is Daisy, who is, as you can see, blessed with great physical beauty. She’s even got matching beauty moles. She is somewhat vain in consequence. I tell both my dogs that they’re smart girls, good girls, beautiful girls. But with Daisy, it is definitely the latter that resonates. She takes in the sun like a glamorous 50s-era movie star in San Tropez, even though she is only a dog in Florida.
The sun is one thing we’ve still got going for us in Florida. Otherwise, things are pretty shitty. We’ve got double-digit unemployment. Nearly half of our houses are underwater in the mortgage sense and will be among the first literally underwater if nothing is done about climate change. And nothing will be done because Republicans and Fox News have successfully demagogued that issue to their mouth-breathing audience, some of whom will eventually require snorkels to continue their mouth-breathing.
To be fair, lots of men have difficulty remaining firm when contraception’s involved.
UPDATE, 8pm-ish: I’ll be dammed, this might be a victory after all. Links to that effect in comments, but I’m mostly going off of what I’ve been hearing on NPR, and it sounds good so far. I’ve still got a nagging suspicion that when all’s said and done today’ll redound to the benefit of the Ecclesiastical-Industrial Complex, but I promised I’d eat my words if I had to, and as of right now the score looks to be women: guaranteed contraceptive coverage, Christofascist Zombie Brigade: 0. So I’ll just print this post out and chow down—not looking forward to it, but a vegetarian diet’s great practice for occasions such as these.
Still not ready to buy into the idea that this was Bam’s plan from the get-go. I mean, I only play chess in 7 or 8 dimensions so I can’t be sure, but c’mon, he’s a clever dude, not a Time Lord. Still, heckuva plan B, and if lobbyists for Big Jesus like Dolan (“step in the right direction,” fuck you) get a good humbling in return for their overreach, all the better. Gotta love it when bishops get beaten.
In a development that pushes the right-wingers-are-always-worse than-you-give-them-credit-for conceit so far that we prisoners of the machines have begun to question the simulated world into which our consciousnesses have been projected, the “Conservative Dating” seminar at CPAC is being run by none other than some dude I never heard of but should have since he’s sort of internet-famous, and since I’m always in the market for guys that make me look good by comparison. This Wayne Elise fellow is the perfect wingman, provided you can plausibly deny later in the evening that you knew who that creep standing next to you at the bar was.
Elise runs a site called “Charisma Arts,” the best evidence I’ve seen yet that charisma is a hard science. It’s one of those joints where you can pretty much randomly click on any article, stab your index finger blindly at the monitor, and find something mockworthy, but heck, let’s go with this one.
Dealing with hot women is like talking to a celebrity. You know they’re famous. They know that you know they’re famous. To pretend you don’t know who they are is just going to make you act silly. Best way to interact with a celebrity is to admit they’re a celebrity, introduce yourself and move on to other topics of conversation.
“Hey, you’re George Peppard from The A Team. I used to play with your action figure. I’m Wayne Elise. Nice to meet you.”
“Nice to meet you.”
“I thought you were dead. Anyways, It’s good to see you. I saw you checking out that girl’s butt. Don’t worry. I’m not calling you out. It’s okay, I was checking her out too.”