Victory means exit strategy, and it's important for the President to explain to us what the exit strategy is.    The Honorable Governor of Texas, George W. Bush

I hate quotations. Tell me what you know.    Ralph Waldo Emerson

Friday, June 23, 2006

Round Up the Usual Suspects

Still awfully busy, though I can't blame my inactivity here solely on that. In truth, I've been going through a disenchanted period, uninspired by events as the "war" drags on and conservatives pound law after directive down in the effort to empty our pockets as much as possible during the remainder of their carte blanche days. I'm still reading though, currently on about chapter 55 (sheesh) of Clinton's My Life.

Remember when Clinton was being accused of wagging the dog because his attacks on Al Qaeda targets coincided with the Lewinski testimony etc.? Well now, looky what we have here. Those Molson's swilling, standing in line at the clinic Canadians/Canadiens have gone and arrested more real terrorists in one day than we have in the entire War That Will End When Hell Freezes Over. $41 billion for the Department of Homeland Security and Dudley Do-Right is getting all the bacon!

And so I imagine this phone call:

―Say, uh, Gonzo, those gol durn Canucks is gone and stole the whole mother lovin' show here. Jesus H., we gotta grab the reins PDQ. Who ya'll got we can kinda, heh heh heh, toss under the tracks pronto, like? We got anything?

―Let me see, here ... best I have right now is this loony bunch of Haitians down in Miami. Weird bunch, and not a lot on them right now. No weapons, money. Just a lot of talk.

―Big talk?

―Told our guy they want to blow up the Sears tower.

―Sears tower, eh? That a big un? Where it's at?

―(Sigh) Biggest we got. In Chicago, sir.

―Haitians, eh? Got no Al Qaeda? Nuttin?

―Well, they've been trying to shop themselves to Al Qaeda.

―Now, that's somethin'. How do we know this?

―Our guy is their Al Qaeda.

―Say, Gonzo, heh heh heh, ya'll gotcherself a one stop terrorist shop over there, dontcha? Ah remember somethin' from second year 'bout en-trap-ment, but I guess these guys ain't likely to be seein' their day in court, heh heh heh.

―Not likely, sir.

―Still, sumpin's got me a little queasy 'bout it. I mean, no weapons, no money, no backers, and the only talk we got is braggin' to our own Al Qaeda imposter. How many dumb fuckers out there gonna buy this?

―More than 29%, sir.

―Heh heh heh heh heh. At's a corker, Gonzo. Ya know what ya'll are? Ya'll one a them sleepers. 29%, heh heh heh. I gitcher point. Yep, ya'll got some brass ones, too. Yer lucky Rover's in good mood today, Gonzo. You go on ahead now and leggo the hounds on these guys. Lemme know the hour so's I can have the bases covered 'round here. And don't make it too late, ya hear? More than 29%, heh heh heh, It's a goddamn good thing I don't have ta run on that slogan, heh heh heh ...You're doin' a heck of a job, Gonzo.

―Uh ...thanks, sir.

Friday, June 09, 2006

Kick This Around

The Little Hun was telling me a story over ribs, spuds and asparagus about how a supplier for her shop, call him Dieter, called in from Munich today with a rather sudsy report on the World Cup opener. To which the response around the shop was apparently, ... oh, that's nice.

We Americans take a beating, likely deserved, for our provinciality. But this time I think we have it right. The FIFA World Cup "soccer" tournament is the ultimate stupidity in a stupid sport.

All right, all you soccer moms. Think I'm wrong? Let's line you up along the "goal" line. I'll put my golf spikes on and go down the line kicking each one of you squarely in the shin. How's that feel?

Of course, that kind of pain goes away, not like the brain damage from heading a ball, or worse, another head.

Ah, but then there's the pageantry of some rich Costa Ricans flying to Munich to see the national team go up against Germany. 'Cause if there's one thing we just don't have enough of in this world, it's nationalism.

Was I inspired by some prima donnas from the Boston suburbs prevailing over an under-funded Russian Army team in the "Miracle on Ice"? Oh, yeah, that was wicked awesome. Now let's invade Grenada. USA ... USA ...

But these are filler, the crux is this:

We have hands. We can do the most amazing things with them. We can communicate with them. Create tools with them. Love with them. Hurt with them. Express our most complex artistic sense with them.

And so the world is going to tell me that they have the ultimate athletic contest in the World Cup. This is the premier showcase in all of team sport?

You just can't use your hands.

That's just plain stupid.

Thursday, June 01, 2006

This Is Why I Do What I Do

I sell stuff. To do this one has to be charming, for about a half an hour. Kilgore Trout was incapable of this, and so he installed aluminum windows. Kilgore Trout is a recurring character in Kurt Vonnegut's books, a sort of alter ego to the author. I like Vonnegut a lot. He has a way of making a point, as so:

Sparky could not wag his tail--because of an automobile accident many years ago, so he had no way of telling other dogs how friendly he was. He had to fight all the time. His ears were in tatters. He was lumpy with scars.

First I laugh, then I think, then I laugh a little harder. I like that.

It occurred to me about thirty years ago that I would have to be charming for a lot longer before I could, say, work for a corporation. Or be a teacher. Or a lawyer. Or a diplomat. Or a Defense Department Spokesperson. Half hour is about all I can do. Why? Because I know I'm a bit insane and so insanity scares me, to the point that I would have to to cry out when it all became too much. I wouldn't last a week.

I couldn't come up with this, couldn't come near it, from American Forces Press Service, a propaganda sheet of the DoD:

BAGHDAD, June 1, 2006 – The top coalition operational commander in Iraq has directed his subordinate commanders to conduct training in "core warrior values" for all coalition forces, highlighting the importance of adhering to legal, moral and ethical standards on the battlefield, military officials here announced today.

"Now let me explain this to you again. You really shouldn't be busting into people's homes and spot executing entire families. Got it?"

"Yes, SIR."

In addition, the troops will be shown a Power Point presentation to reinforce that it is counterproductive to Iraqi morale, this busting into homes and spot executing entire families.

The program will take about 30 days. Where have we heard that before?

I just couldn't, can't be a part of all this. It's my health.