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May 27, 2015

Overnight Open Thread (5-27-2015)

—Maetenloch

Thanks to a sinus infection that's been grinding me down please accept this stripped-down even pithier ONT.

Quote of the Day I

Oh and I agree about the superheroics to a certain extent but I think the real issue didn't start with Stan Lee as much as it did the people after him. Yeah, he only hired fellow political travelers but I doubt even he realized how far they would go. I doubt he thought they would quit writing to kids either and write comics solely to aging leftists and weird grad-school sex-scenester kids (LGBTABCEFG) to slowly diminishing returns propped up only by films and cartoons for children. In fact, if anything, that's the biggest knock on what superheroes have become. It's adults stealing the dreams of children to prop up their own sad fantasies. Sort of a good picture of the current Left in the world. Globalized and living off the young for the privilege of the few. Who'd a guessed there was so much in comics

-- Greg Nielsen in an email to Mark Steyn

Quote of the Day II

There's a certain kind of behavior in the Arab world that, to me, resembles the way young men behave when there is no significant influence from women in their lives.

-- PJ O'Rourke

Quote of the Day III

One of the scariest aspects of our times is how seldom either people or policies are judged by their track record.

-- Thomas Sowell

Let's All Congratulate Marie Harf on Her Recent Promotion

She's now senior advisor for strategic communications to Secretary of State John Kerry and will play a key role in developing communication strategies for our negotiations with Iran over how they'll keep their nuclear weapons program. It's nice to see that all her hard work, consistent stylishness, and peppy can-do attitude was finally recognized by the Pan-Hellenic Council State Department.

According to unnamed sources Harf is already bursting with ideas to make this year's negotiations the most AWESOMEST EVER! Now don't get too excited but rumors are that Lady Gaga(!) has already been booked and that Aerosmith(!!) may make an appearance during the karaoke cruise!!!

We're in the best of hands.

Hrf234Marie

The Deep Thoughts of John Kerry

The Vainglorious Mr. Kerry

Investor's Business Daily: An Obama Crime Wave Spreads Across America

State-run Chinese Newspaper: US-China war 'inevitable' unless Washington drops demands over South China Sea

Times of London: Saudi Arabia Calling in Its Chits to Get Pakistani Nuclear Weapons

FDA Approves First Drug to Treat Radiation Sickness After a Nuclear Incident

So we have that going for us.

But hey here's some Kate Upton to cheer you right up!

Kate Upton's Car Got Towed so She Chugs a Bud Out of a Paper Bag, Makes Calls

Apparently as part of a movie scene. In real life models just grab the first non-serial killery-but-has-a-401K guy they see and ask to borrow his car for a while and continue on their merry way.

katecarbeer

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Posted by Maetenloch at 10:54 PM Comments



Freddie Gray Prosecutor Marilyn Mosby (nee James) Was On Judge Judy?

—Ace

Of course.


For the Haters of Me: It's all too real.

Posted by Ace at 08:27 PM Comments



France: "No" To Any Iran Deal, Unless We Have Full Access to All Nuke Sites, Including the Military Ones Where, Duh, Nuclear Development Will Actually Take Place

—Ace

Last week, Supreme Shaman Khamenei declared that not only would he not permit Iran's military sites to be inspected for violations, but that he would not even permit its scientists to be interviewed about the work they were doing.

"The impudent and brazen enemy expects that we allow them talk to our scientists and researchers about a fundamental local achievement but no such permission will be allowed," Khamenei told military commanders in Tehran Wednesday, in remarks broadcast on state TV. "No inspection of any military site or interview with nuclear scientists will be allowed."

Khamenei said interviewing Iranian nuclear scientists would be an affront to Iran's dignity.

"I will not allow foreigners to interview -- which is tantamount to interrogation -- the prominent beloved scientists and sons of this nation," he said.

Of course, Obama is desperate to give Iran the bomb. England is basically an ISIS outpost with some past connection to the Beatles.

But France, along with Germany, continues to have a more adult view of Iran.

"France will not accept (a deal) if it is not clear that inspections can be done at all Iranian installations, including military sites," Laurent Fabius told lawmakers .

...

"'Yes’' to an agreement, but not to an agreement that will enable Iran to have the atomic bomb. That is the position of France which is independent and peaceful."

We're once again forced to witness the spectacle of a leftwing American President being contradicted by an avowedly socialist, but less leftwing, French administration.

Has Obama Lost the Cher Vote?


Posted by Ace at 06:52 PM Comments

Jen Psaki: Obama's Strategy In Iraq, Which Is In All Ways Perfect, May Need to be Adjusted

—Ace

The White House had previously sworn on the Bible that their strategy was perfect and flawless.

Now they continue to make that same point -- but Jen Psaki acknowledges we may have to "adjust" the perfect plan.

The White House has altered its language in defending their strategy against the Islamic State, finally admitting that they must "adapt" its strategy.

Jen Psaki, White House communications director, dismissed Sec. Ash Carter's comment that Iraqi soldiers "showed no will to fight," directly contradicting the vice president’s words. The allegation undermines the White House strategy to equip and train Iraqi soldiers so that U.S. involvement can remain minimal.

"They've taken on this fight; they're continuing to, but we need to adapt our strategy too and adapt to the type of equipment that we’re providing as time goes on and as ISIS adapts," Psaki said Wednesday morning on CNN.

In total, Psaki mentioned "adapting" six times in a four-minute interview, despite downplaying losses by claiming the fight against IS will have "good days and bad days."

When do we have the good ones? Video of the hapless babbling fool Jen Psaki at the link.

In addition, you will be happy to know that the Obama White House is taking the fall of Ramadi with an increased sense of urgency.

Previously, the White House had called the sacking of the capital of the Anbar Province a "tactical setback."

Today, it acknowledges that the setback was more serious than that.

Why, they even go so far as to call it, using a passive-voice-style double-negative construction, a "not unsubstantial setback."

"I think there are a variety of contributors to what happened in Ramadi," press secretary Josh Earnest said when asked about Defense Secretary Ashton Carter’s contention that the Iraqi army showed no "will to fight" and essentially ran from Ramadi. "The first is that there -- the Iraqi security forces, who were fighting in Ramadi, and have been fighting in Ramadi for a year and a half, didn’t have the benefit of the training of the United States and our coalition partners. There were clearly, as the Iraqis have indicated, some military command and planning problems that occurred. And we saw a pretty effective tactic used by ISIL. And all of that led to a not unsubstantial setback in Ramadi."

Obama is a not uncatastrophic president.

Let's talk about this "lack of a will to fight" comment.

While there may be merit to it -- I'll need more than the Obama Administration's spin of events before saying -- it has to be noted that the Obama Team's first, best, and only response to any failure is to claim that it's someone else's fault.

The only thing this Administration actually does is shift blame.

Now, we could talk about why American planes are only making thirteen airstrikes a day in Iraq and Syria. (For comparison, we made 800 per day in Operation Iraqi Freedom, and more than 1300 per day in Desert Storm.)

We could ask, if the US is only bringing air power to this fight, why we are bringing so damned little of it-- almost as if Obama wants to be seen as if he's "trying something," but in fact is set upon losing the war (as usual).

Such talk would bother Obama, who has maintained, since he came into office, that he has not made a single mistake, except for failing sometimes to communicate how awesome his decisions and policies are. (No really -- the press was always asking Bush if he made mistakes. They've only asked Obama a couple of times, and Obama always says no, not one mistake, but he allows his communications may be better.)

So the Iraq forces just lost a major town, and the US forces were doing, basically, doodly-squat while it happened.

So of course Team Obama must go into overdrive insulting the Iraqis.

Andrew McLean writes:

Toxic Nation: After Ramadi, USA Shows Itself to be the Worst Kind of Friend

These remarks constitute the latest evolution of administration talking points on our failing campaign against the Islamic State. Shortly before Ramadi fell, U.S. officials were complaining to the press that its coverage of the war was biased against American efforts. In particular, the officials wanted television news to stop recycling old B-roll footage of IS from 2014, showing the fighters moving in mass formations of vehicles. The argument was that because our bombing campaign was so successful, IS could not and did not operate "in broad daylight" like that anymore.

The only wars this administration cares about are publicity wars.

....

With Carter's questioning of the courage of the Iraqi forces, the administration’s spin has evolved from "everything is going great," to "this is not a big deal," to "it's not our fault--it's those cowardly Iraqis who can't get it done."

...

We refuse to share any risk with our Iraqi partners, and then call them cowards in public when they fail. As a strategic matter, who will want to fight alongside us in the future after a display as pathetic as this?

....

[I]t is a strange sort of strategy that is based on an expectation that, "over time," we will have any friends left, if our leaders continue to find it politically expedient to belittle allies after sending them out to die alone. The only thing being degraded in the campaign against the Islamic State is American prestige.

Everything is Awesome Update: The Obama Administration Theme, suggested by Bob's House of Flannel Shirts.

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Posted by Ace at 04:56 PM Comments

Hillary Clinton's Doing Her Vile Fake Southern Accent Again

—Ace

She's just awful in every way imaginable, and in several more you couldn't even think of.

"She needs to stop doing that risible fake accent," emails Madonna.

Compare to her her "I don' feel no ways tired, I come too faaahr" Negro accent from 2007.

Corrected: I put up a pic of what I thought was Hillary eating a fish. It wasn't Hillary; it was German Chancellor Angela Merkel.

But I think this is a good replacement:


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Posted by Ace at 03:33 PM Comments

Gallup: American Support for Liberal Social Positions at Historic Highs; "Social Liberals" Equal "Social Conservatives" For First Time in Poll's History

—Ace

This only goes back to 1999, but this is the first time that social liberals and social conservatives are at parity, per Gallup's polling. The two groups are now both at 31%.

On specific issues, there is a shift in favor of the left, with many socially-left positions now receiving historic levels of support.

A big surge in support for gay relationships, which you might have guessed, as well as for sexual relationships before marriage and divorce as well.

Support for abortion has ticked up, but only a bit.

Rush was talking about this, saying that the whole point of the poll was to demoralize social conservatives, or get the Establishment Republicans to abandon the socially conservative wing. (Not a hard sell for Establishment Republicans, in any case.)

I don't buy that. The questions have been asked since 1999 and 2001, respectively. I don't think someone could claim that Gallup only asked the question about gay marriage in 2004 in order to demoralize liberals, back when more were against homosexuality.

I do think this represents an actual change. A permanent one? Who knows. What's permanent in the world?

Posted by Ace at 02:48 PM Comments

Anonymous Writer Asks NYT's "Ethicist" Columnist: A Rape Occurred In a Political Campaign I Was Involved With, and the Higher Ups Covered It Up; What Should I Do?

—Ace

Via Twitchy.

My first job out of college was at a major political campaign. Late in the year, an intern told me she had been raped by one of my colleagues and that campaign higher-ups made the problem go away. I'm not sure what that means, but the police weren’t involved, nothing made the news, all the people involved kept their jobs. To my knowledge, this young woman told me and one other colleague. I kept the secret to myself for the last seven years until the other night. I let slip to a journalist friend the very basics of what happened, and now I’m being asked for contacts who can confirm that it happened.

...

The candidate I worked for is running again. I still support the candidate, and I do not want the opponent in office. On the other hand, I am aghast that the organization would cover up such a heinous crime.

Hmmm...

You know, not for nothin', but Hillary Clinton was still running for president 7 years ago, wasn't she?

Posted by Ace at 12:28 PM Comments

OMG So Adorbz

—Ace

So this is pretty adorable.

Baby bears -- that's adorable right there -- are play-boxing with each other, but they're kinda clumsy and ineffectual because they're babies.

This is so cute it turned me full-on gloryhole gay.

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Posted by Ace at 12:10 PM Comments

Open Thread

—rdbrewer


Peder Mørk Mønsted, "A Cottage Garden with Chickens" (1919)

Posted by rdbrewer at 10:54 AM Comments

Supreme Court to Consider Whether the Constitution Requires 'One Person, One Vote' or 'One Voter, One Vote'

—Gabriel Malor

Yesterday, the Supreme Court agreed to resolve a redistricting question that has been simmering for over fifty years: does the equal protection clause require that state voter districts be apportioned according to the number of residents or the number of eligible voters? States have, generally, been allowed to decide for themselves whether to use the total state population or some more restrictive population—say, one that excludes temporary residents and aliens—when drawing districts.

But this question has profound implications for states with large populations of residents who are ineligible to vote like, for example, the state of Texas, where this case originates. Counting residents ineligible to vote for the purposes of apportioning districts tends to give more weight to votes in districts with large numbers of such residents. The argument in this case is that this inequality of voting power violates the equal protection clause. It would be an unusual constitutional standard that allowed votes in some states to be diluted at the whim of the state legislature or (perhaps worse) independent redistricting commissions.

This quickly becomes a political question. Residents not eligible to vote—like aliens and felons in many states—just happen to be concentrated in urban districts, which also tend to be Democratic districts. Shifting voting power from such urban minority districts to rural, generally older white districts will launch a hundred screechy tirades on the internet, but this lawsuit finds support in decades of progressive jurisprudence. The case law implementing the Voting Rights Act has required using population of eligible voters, not population of residents, as the baseline when drawing minority districts. The petitioners in this case want the Supreme Court to find the same principle is required by the equal protection clause.

One thing that the Supreme Court justices will no doubt want to know: how accurate is the states' count of eligible voters? The census gives a pretty good idea of how many residents live in a particular area, but it was not designed to give a precise count of eligible voters. If the high court decides that the equal protection clause requires 'one voter, one vote' districting, how accurate must the count of eligible voters be? Also, this is a state redistricting case, but it is not hard to see how the principle could be extended to congressional redistricting, which would cause some big changes in the House for states like Texas, Florida, New Mexico, Arizona, and (gulp) California.

Posted by Gabriel Malor at 09:30 AM Comments

Morning Thread (5-27-2015)

—Andy

According to leading Climate Scientists™, it apparently never even rained in Texas until last weekend.

Stevie Ray Vaughan's "Texas Flood" (cover of a 1958 original, FYI) now seems eerily prescient.

Posted by Andy at 06:09 AM Comments

Overnight Open Thread (5-26-2015)

—Maetenloch

Quote of the Day I - A Fella Could Have a Pretty Good Weekend in Vegas With All This Stuff Edition

An upcoming workshop scheduled to take place at the University of Wisconsin-Madison aims to teach campus radicals and socialists how to manipulate campus resources to advance their agenda. One of the group's overall goals, according to their website, is to "reveal and challenge the North American university as a site working at the junction of settler-colonialism, neoliberal capitalism, hetero-patriarchy, white supremacy and other systems of domination and exploitation." The event includes sessions investigating what it means to be a thief, how to construct political narratives, and how to destabilise hegemonic spatial representations.
Being expected to pay your bills as agreed - say, those misspent student loans - is, we learn, a "means of oppression." Because destabilising hegemonic spatial representations is something that someone else should be forced to pay for.

-- David Thompson

Quote of the Day II

"The line between free speech and X" is often the rhetorical equivalent to "the line between vegetables and rutabagas": the author doesn't have a coherent argument that rutabagas aren't vegetables, but doesn't like rutabagas and thinks you shouldn't either.

-- Popehat

Quote of the Day III

norsebyswtweet

Robert Tracinski: Why is the Angry Left So Angry?

In short: immanentizing the eschaton.

For the secular leftist, the end state is social and necessarily political. It is all about getting everybody else on board and herding them into his imagined utopia. There are so many "problematic" aspects of life that need to be reengineered, so many vast social systems that need to be overthrown and replaced. But the rest of us are all screwing it up, all the time, through our greed, our denial, our apathy, our refusal to listen to him banging on about his tired socialist ideology.

For the Christian, the ideal end state is safely in the next world and therefore is never in doubt. For the individualist, it's in his own life, and it's mostly under his direct control. For the leftist, however, it is all outside his control. It requires other people, a lot of other people, and those SOBs usually refuse to cooperate. Talk about rage-inducing.

If the whole focus of your life is on getting everybody else to agree with you on every detail of your politics and adopt your plans for a perfect society, then you're setting yourself up to be at war with most of the human race most of the time.

Which means an awful lot for the Angry Left to get angry about.

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Posted by Maetenloch at 10:44 PM Comments

Rubio: Christianity Is On the Edge of Being Declared a Hate Crime

—Ace

Depressing, dark truth for you.

Posted by Ace at 09:04 PM Comments

Hollywood Hates You and Spits On All Of Your Values

—Ace

The proof: This remake.

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Posted by Ace at 07:28 PM Comments

Bad News: Muslim Cleric Declares Fatwa on Wanking Off; Says That Those Who Masturbate Will Have "Pregnant Hands" In the Afterlife

—Ace

You don't want to be punished with a hand-baby.

A Muslim televangelist has advised male followers to stop masturbating -- because it will leave their hands pregnant in the afterlife.

Turkish preacher Mücahid Cihad Han told viewers that masturbation was forbidden in Islam.

"One hadith states that those who have sexual intercourse with their hands will find their hands pregnant in the afterlife, complaining against them to God over its rights,' he said during his program on private television station 2000 TV, according to The Hurriyet Daily News.

Here are some pictures of the crusading cleric.


Well sure I can see why this guy can pontificate against masturbation. I mean, look at him. He looks like he's waist-deep in p***y.

Bro, do you even lift?

And now, for rebuttal: A nervous goat.

goatbuttal.jpg
"Everything that just guy said is bullshit!"

Posted by Ace at 06:34 PM Comments

Good News: Yesterday, Obama Announced The End of War In Afghanistan
Not So Good News: The Taliban Is Still Killing American Soldiers in Afghanistan

—Ace

No more war, Obama told us.

Actually, this is an example of a politician endlessly re-declaring the same thing to get more free media out of it. Obama declared the end of War in Afghanistan last December.

The enemy, Jim Geraghty notes, was unimpressed.

A 22-year-old member of the US Army from Whitinsville was killed in Afghanistan when an Afghan soldier attacked his American allies earlier this week.

John M. Dawson, an Army specialist, died in Jalalabad from wounds suffered when he was hit by small arms fire while on an escort mission, the Defense Department said in a statement.

That story is from April 10, 2015. Wow, that's practically as ancient history as World War II.

Mission Accomplished?

Robert Tracynski notes the Passive Voice President says these wars "came to an end" -- certainly not that America won these wars.

There are good men who gave their lives, or left behind an arm or a leg, to keep Islamic terrorists from establishing a home base in Iraq. Having achieved that victory, they then had to watch as it was all thrown away....

[W]hatever this administration's role, it is disturbing to see the president touting the peace that we are supposedly enjoying after the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan have "come to an end." That’s an appropriately passive expression, since President Obama can't say that we’ve won those wars, only that they have "come to an end"--and only for us. I should also add: and only for now.

I hate this asshole.

Posted by Ace at 05:27 PM Comments

Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals Upholds Injunction Against Obama's Executive Amnesty, Blocking Enforcement of the Amnesty Until a Full Trial on the Merits

—Ace

A lower court had issued an injunction staying enforcement of the amnesty. The Obama Administration appealed that injunction, seeking to go ahead with the amnesty until/unless a full hearing confirmed the amnesty as unconstitutional.

The Obama Administration's efforts resulted in, get this, failure.

A federal appeals court upheld an injunction against President Obama's new deportation in a ruling Tuesday that marks the second major legal setback for an administration that had insisted its actions were legal.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit ruled in favor of Texas, which had sued to stop the amnesty, on all key points, finding that Mr. Obama’s amnesty likely broke the law governing how big policies are to be written.

"The public interest favors maintenance of the injunction," the judges wrote in the majority opinion.

...

The full amnesty had been scheduled to begin last week, while an earlier part had been slated to accept applications on Feb. 18....

This is not a final ruling on the merits, but it is reason for optimism.

Here's hoping.

Posted by Ace at 03:31 PM Comments

Hillary Clinton, The Candidate Who Will Sell You Cheap Crap

—Ace

The New York Times notes that the Hillary Clinton "keepsake" shop is open, serving as yet another progressive tax on stupidity.

I guess maybe I approve of that. Frankly, we should have more progressive taxes on stupidity. It's been subsidized way too long.

So you can buy a t-shirt that looks like one of Hillary's sexless, charmless, formless pantsuits. No really -- she calls it "The Everyday Pantsuit Tee." She throws a "The" in front of it because that's what lame outlets do, they say they're selling you "The Cable-Knit Sweater" or "The Six Dollar Burger."

everydaypantsuit.jpg

What Team Hillary Wants It To Say: I'm fun, fashion-forward, and not without a sense of whimsy

What It Actually Says: I work the tapioca line at the Group Home

Here's the "Stitch by Stich Throw Pillow."

oldladypillow.jpg

What Team Hillary Wants It To Say: A little subversive wit delivered with old-world charm

What It Actually Says: Old ladies collect throw pillows like junkies collect pill bottles

That's fifty bucks, by the way.

For $25, I'll sell you a pillow that says "There's SomethIng Deeply, Badly Wrong With Me."

This t-shirt is called "The Supporter." I think it's deliberate that "The Supporter" is a male, or sort of male, at least. I mean, he'd be on that side of the spectrum if you graphed it.

You know -- men are the supporters, #Women are the #ActionHeroes. #Progress.

vnecksupporter.jpg

What Team Hillary Wants It To Say: Mom, Dad, I'd like to talk to you about Hillary Clinton

What It Actually Says: Mom, Dad -- I'd like to talk to you about what happened to me at summer camp

Posted by Ace at 02:27 PM Comments

Another Much-Hyped Rape Claim Proves False

—Ace

Or at least there is insufficient evidence to bring charges.

What is more dangerous -- "Rape culture," or "rape culture" culture? That is, the witch-hunting, lunatic sexual paranoia about the existence of a so-called "rape culture"?

The victims of "rape culture" culture are starting to pile up.

A high-profile LAPD raid on Venice High School that made international headlines after 15 male students were arrested on charges of sexual assault has resulted in prosecutors' decision not to prosecute anyone in the case.

The large number of students arrested in mid-March and the high number of law enforcement personnel that descended on the school’s campus and led students away in handcuffs drew widespread attention on the case. But now, over two months later, prosecutors with the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office cited "insufficient evidence" as the reason that no charges would be pursued, the Los Angeles Times reported.

Teenaged girls are famously sober and reserved in their judgment.

Posted by Ace at 12:32 PM Comments

Whose Fault Is It The Iraqis Won't Fight For Their Own Country?

—DrewM.

The fall of Ramadi last week was another reminder that Iraqi security forces don't have the stomach to fight ISIS.

Iraqi security forces fled Ramadi without putting up a fight, despite holding as much as a 10-to-1 advantage over Islamic State militants, according to two senior U.S. defense officials.

...

In the days leading up to its fall, a combination of spectacular car bomb attacks, the ambush of an Iraq army patrol and marginal weather spooked the Iraqi forces. The trigger may have been a minor sandstorm that prompted Iraqi commanders to believe that U.S. warplanes would not be able to bomb Islamic State targets.

A phone call to U.S. officials would have cleared up that misunderstanding, one of the officials said.

Iraqi commandos, soldiers and police officers panicked when they thought they wouldn't be protected by U.S. warplanes, one official said, and abandoned their posts. They left behind U.S.-supplied vehicles and weapons, which are now in the hands of the militants.

Even if they didn't get air support, which they did, how much of it do you need when you have a 10-1 advantage against an attacking force that doesn't have any air assets in the fight?

Secretary of Defense Ash Carter had enough of this crap and called out the Iraqis over the weekend.

: What apparently happened was that the Iraqi forces just showed no will to fight. They were not out numbered but in fact they vastly outnumbered the opposing force, and yet they failed to fight. They withdrew from the site. And that says to me, and I think to most of us, that we have an issue with the will of the Iraqis to fight ISIL and defend themselves.

Now, we can give them training, we can give them equipment; we obviously can't give them the will to fight. But if we give them training, we give them equipment and give them support and give them some time, I hope they will develop the will to fight, because only if they fight can ISIL remain defeated.

Aside from the absurd notion that ISIL/ISIS is in any way "defeated", Carter is right. We've spent over a decade and billions of dollars providing training and advanced weapons to our Iraqi "allies" and this is the product we've managed to produce.

There are some groups willing to fight...the Iranian backed Shia militias. Unfortunately setting them loose in the Sunni regions creates as many, if not more, problems than it solves.

Writing before Carter's remarks Max Boot seems pretty sure he knows who is responsible for the Iraqis' failure...America.

Imagine that a vicious street gang were terrorizing a neighborhood of Detroit or South Central Los Angeles. Would we blame the residents for not being willing to confront the gang on their own and thereby conclude that the residents were not worth saving? Of course not. Because we would recognize that a small number of heavily armed toughs can terrorize a neighborhood—and if sufficiently vicious they can even cow the local police force. That doesn’t mean that the residents want to live under the domination of the street gang, any more than Iraqis today want to live under the domination of ISIS or the Quds Force. The problem is that they don’t feel strong enough at the moment to rise up against those terrorist organizations.

This is nonsense.

Iraq isn't a scared resident living in fear of the gang-bangers hanging out on the corner. Again, it's a country with a large military that has been lavishly equipped and trained by the United States of America. To accept this argument you have to accept the notion that the US will be responsible for Iraqi security forever. After all, police don't come in, sweep the neighborhood of bad guys and then tell the previously scared residents they are now in charge of keeping the area safe.

The Iraqis may not want to live under ISIS but to date they haven't shown a willingness to use the tools they have to avoid that outcome, regardless of how much support we give them.

Sure, they might be willing to fight to the last American but that's not really a selling point for a policy in the US.

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Posted by DrewM. at 11:14 AM Comments

Open Thread

—rdbrewer


Robert Archibalt Graafland, "A Girl Reading in a Hammock" (1910)

Posted by rdbrewer at 10:02 AM Comments

Morning Thread (5-26-2015)

—Andy

Back to our irregularly scheduled programming ...

Posted by Andy at 07:26 AM Comments

Overnight Open Thread (5-25-2015) – Memorial Day Edition

—Maetenloch

Quote of the Day

If you are able...

Save for them a place inside of you, and save one backward glance when you are leaving for the places they can no longer go.

Be not ashamed to say you loved them, though you may or may not have always.

Take what they have left with their dying and keep it with your own.

And in that time when men decide and feel safe to call the war insane, take one moment to embrace those gentle heroes you left behind.

-- Major Michael O'Donnell, Dak To, RVN, 1 January 1970

[Killed on March 30, 1970 while piloting a helicopter in Cambodia, remains recovered in 2001 and interred in Arlington National Cemetery]
odonnellpic23 odonnellarlington5

"Six Seconds"

Here the recording shows a number of Iraqi police, some of whom had fired their AKs, now scattering like the normal and rational men they were, some running right past the Marines, who had three seconds left to live. For about two seconds more, the recording shows the Marines firing their weapons nonstop. The truck's windshield explodes into shards of glass as their rounds take it apart and tear into the body of the son of a bitch trying to get past them to kill their brothers - American and Iraqi - bedded down in the barracks, totally unaware that their lives at that moment depended entirely on two Marines standing their ground. Yale and Haerter never hesitated. By all reports and by the recording, they never stepped back. They never even shifted their weight. With their feet spread shoulder-width apart, they leaned into the danger, firing as fast as they could. They had only one second left to live, and I think they knew. The truck explodes. The camera goes blank. Two young men go to their God. Six seconds. Not enough time to think about their families, their country, their flag, or about their lives or their deaths, but more than enough time for two very brave young men to do their duty.

YaleHaeter

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Posted by Maetenloch at 10:42 PM Comments

Obama Commemorates the American War Dead By Scarfing Down Some Sweet Sweet Ice Cream

—Ace

Remembrances.


Posted by Ace at 03:48 PM Comments

Memorial Day Thoughts [CBD and Jim from Galveston ]

—Open Blogger

AnnaPuma.JPG
American Military Cemetery at Luxembourg. July 4th, 2010
Photo courtesy of Anna Puma

If ever proof were needed that we fought for a cause and not for conquest it could be found in these cemeteries. Here was our only conquest. All we asked...was enough...soil in which to bury our gallant dead

-- General Mark W. Clark.
Chairman, American Battle Monuments Commission

In August of 2008 I visited the memorial and cemetery at Omaha Beach. There are two ways (at least) to enter the grounds, and we chose to walk around the side rather than through the main entrance. There is a path that parallels the beach that is shielded from the rest of the memorial by trees and a hedgerow. So when I turned the corner I was suddenly confronted by the sight of the cemetery's long rows of grave markers, seemingly going on forever. They were immaculate, and framed by the blue sky and the verdant French countryside. It was, literally, breathtaking. And shockingly emotional.

These were men who fought for me...a generation before I was born. I can do nothing for them except to ensure that they will not be forgotten in my lifetime.

******

Everyone has their personal feelings about those who sacrificed for us....Here are the thoughts of Moron Jim (Sunk New Dawn, Galveston, TX)

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Posted by Open Blogger at 01:00 PM Comments

What Does It Mean To Be An American? [Y-not]

—Open Blogger

I have been thinking about this a lot lately as the effects of Obama's "fundamental transformation" manifest themselves. Today seems like an appropriate day to ask you what you think is the most American value.

For me it is exemplified in the following:

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Posted by Open Blogger at 10:26 AM Comments

Memorial Day Open Thread - Niedermeyer's Dead Horse

—Open Blogger

Always remember.

Posted by Open Blogger at 09:04 AM Comments

Overnight Open Thread (5-24-2015)– Infamous Memorial Holiday Thread Edition

—Maetenloch

The Infamous Memorial Day ONT

Wow. It's hard to imagine that six (!) long years ago on a night just like tonight that the infamous Memorial Day ONT went down. It shocked even veteran moron-types, brought down anger and pinch-faced scoldery from on high, and damn near got the ONT canceled. And it remains an evening still spoken of in hushed whispers among the morons. No don't bother going to the thread and trying to add your spoor to it - that way leads to a banning.

So in memory of that episode, for tonight only the usual ONT rules are partially suspended.* So curse all you want and empty out that disgusting potty mouth of yours.

tumblr_miygeppW5q1qmvy8zo1_500

potty62501783

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Posted by Maetenloch at 10:20 PM Comments

My Memorial Day [Weirddave]

—Open Blogger

Here is a post I made on another message board in May of 2000. It's a little outdated in that it doesn't reflect the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. I thought of updating it, but ultimately decided to let it stand as written. I walk amongst the graves every year and remember, and since I wrote this, the responsibility has grown as now I have sons to teach as we walk together. Millions of people cavalierly toss about their opinions about politics and foreign policy and government. Very few of them stop to realize the real world costs of the freedoms we enjoy. War is nasty, brutal and unforgiving. The innocent and the guilty alike are consumed by it's fury. It is not by any stretch of the imagination "nice", but sometimes, as bad as war is, it is necessary and preferable to the alternative. When we as a society take our lives as they are for granted, we shame those who bought us our freedoms with their lives.

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Posted by Open Blogger at 07:16 PM Comments

Food Thread: Memorial Day Beer [Beerslinger]

—Open Blogger

This Memorial Day weekend we are free to drink and brew great beers thanks to all of those who made the big sacrifice.
Here's a feel good story about a WWII soldier, his helmet, and beer in Belgium.

Vincent Speranza, a former infantryman machine gunner with the 501st Parachute Infantry Regiment during WWII, inspects an M249 machine gun weapon system during an installation visit Oct. 6, 2013, at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska. Speranza was at the base to visit paratroopers with the 1st Battalion, 501st Infantry Regiment, and to be a special guest at their regimental ball. Jeffrey Smith/U.S. Army

paratrooper.jpg

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Posted by Open Blogger at 05:45 PM Comments

Food Thread: A Structural Analysis of Deli Sandwiches [CBD]

—Open Blogger

It's a breathtakingly simple food; bread, meat, cheese, some vegetables and a condiment or two. Any decent supermarket or deli can provide the raw materials for a solid sandwich....although the bread can be a problem outside of range of a good bakery.

This bread looks damned good.....

deli sandwich.jpg

And it seems to have been gutted before the sandwich was built, and that is a vital part of the process. Too much bread is a sin. Gut the damned loaf, and you are left with the crunchy goodness of the crust, a bit of the inside to help with stability and soak up the dressing, but not so much that it becomes a bread sandwich with meat and cheese on the side.

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Posted by Open Blogger at 04:00 PM Comments

And I see AMD's desktop GPU market share continue to slip and think to myself "maybe this is not a coincidence."

—Gang of Gaming Morons!

So Friday was Pac-Man's 35th Anniversary. ArcadeHeroes did a cool writeup on Pac-Man arcade games through the ages. Personally, I'm more of a fan of the cool Pac-Man merch that came out where we got stuff like this

Or This

Why we needed an official Pac-Man joke book, no one will ever know

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Posted by Gang of Gaming Morons! at 03:06 PM Comments

Is This The End of The Republican Party? When You've Lost Drudge..... [CBD]

—Open Blogger


The Blaze covers his tirade.

Is anyone surprised?

Posted by Open Blogger at 11:30 AM Comments

Sunday Morning Book Thread 05-24-2015: For The Rough Men Willling To Do Violence On Our Behalf [OregonMuse]

—Open Blogger


memorialday2.jpg

Good morning to all of you morons and moronettes and bartenders everywhere and all the ships at sea. Welcome to AoSHQ's stately, prestigious, internationally acclaimed and high-class Sunday Morning Book Thread. The only AoSHQ thread that is so hoity-toity, pants are required. Or kilts. Kilts are OK, too. But not tutus. Unless you're a girl.

Book Quote

Anyone who says they have only one life to live must not know how to read a book.
-Author Unknown

Many of you will recognize that the title of this morning's book thread is from the quote by George Orwell, "people sleep peacefully in their beds at night only because rough men stand ready to do violence on their behalf." This is a great quote, but alas, Orwell never said it. Here is an interesting account of how it probably came to be misattributed.


We Will Remember Them

With proud thanksgiving, a mother for her children,
England mourns for her dead across the sea.
Flesh of her flesh they were, spirit of her spirit,
Fallen in the cause of the free.
...
They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old:
Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.
At the going down of the sun and in the morning
We will remember them.

Excerpt from For The Fallen by Robert Laurence Binyon (1869-1943)


War Novels

There's a number of "greatest war novels" lists available (for example, this one, and that one, and that one and that one in particular), and there are some great books on those lists, but I decided to pick just one novel for this Memorial Day, A Midnight Clear by William Wharton, which didn't make many of the lists. It just sounded interesting:

Set in the Ardennes Forest on Christmas Eve 1944, Sergeant Will Knott and five other GIs are ordered close to the German lines to establish an observation post in an abandoned chateau. Here they play at being soldiers in what seems to be complete isolation. That is, until the Germans begin revealing their whereabouts and leaving signs of their presence: a scarecrow, equipment the squad had dropped...and, strangest of all, a small fir tree hung with fruit, candles, and cardboard stars. Suddenly, Knott and the others must unravel these mysteries, learning as they do about themselves, about one another, and about the "enemy"

Wharton also wrote an account of his own WWII experiences, Shrapnel: A Memoir.


Military Fiction by Veterans

Thanks to Oldsailors Poet for telling me about this site here for military fiction written by actual veterans. Sales-based donations go to various veterans groups. How much and what veteran groups depends on the title. The link is to the "action and adventure" books, but there are many books and many genres represented.

Continue reading


Posted by Open Blogger at 09:00 AM Comments

EMT 5/24/15 [krakatoa]

—Open Blogger

Your mid- long weekend open thread begins here.

Posted by Open Blogger at 06:03 AM Comments

Overnight Open Thread (23 May 2015)

—CDR M

Hope you morons are enjoying your Memorial Day weekend with friends, family, and pets but do take a moment to remember the fallen this weekend. Here is a listing of all state national cemeteries that are having ceremonies.

Continue reading


Posted by CDR M at 09:54 PM Comments

Evening Open Thread- Picture This Edition [Weirddave]

—Open Blogger

Here's a link to a whole bunch of neat pictures. I realize that it's click bait along the lines of "This man opened a can of paint. What he saw will make you question the existence of God!", but most of the pictures are neat, for example, this is Florida's oldest surviving Civil War veteran, Bill Lundy, in 1955:

Lundy.jpg

Continue reading


Posted by Open Blogger at 07:36 PM Comments

Open Thread: How Do We Lose To These Guys? [Y-not]

—Open Blogger

So this happened:

This is the tweet Tapper was referring to (it didn't display for some reason):

Continue reading


Posted by Open Blogger at 04:41 PM Comments



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The Federalist Radio Hour: John Dickerson
Ben Domenech interviews Dickerson about his vision for Face the Nation. [rdbrewer]


Mollie Hemingway: Latest New Yorker Cover Erases Women, Minorities From GOP Field
Several white, male candidates in a locker room with Hillary looking on, trying to get in. It's puerile. "Do you get it? Do you get it?... They’re trying to say that the presidency is an old boys’ club and she’s trying to get in!" They're simply putting their prejudices on the cover. [rdbrewer]


Ken White: How To Spot And Critique Censorship Tropes In The Media's Coverage Of Free Speech Controversies
From a few days ago. "It's easy to spot overt calls for censorship from the commentariat.... But it's harder to detect the subtle pro-censorship assumptions and rhetorical devices that permeate media coverage of free speech controversies. In discussing our First Amendment rights, the media routinely begs the question — it adopts stock phrases and concepts that presume that censorship is desirable or constitutional, and then tries to pass the result off as neutral analysis. This promotes civic ignorance and empowers deliberate censors." [rdbrewer]

The Independent: World first as scientists use cold sore virus to attack cancer cells
"Using genetically modified viruses to attack tumour cells could open a 'wave' of potential new treatments." [rdbrewer]


Carly Fiorina's Brilliant Move
The cut of her jib ain't bad. [rdbrewer]

The Independent: Self-parking Volvo ploughs into journalists after owner neglects to pay for extra feature that stops cars crashing into people
"The video has horrified many — but it’s not clear that anything actually went wrong." Well, you can tell something went wrong when the car rammed people. That's always a pretty good sign. Video. [rdbrewer]


"Not feisty enough"
#GamerGate Still Going, Still Driving the Left Insane
Clarification: more insane, of course
Sharyl Attkisson: Obamacare: Republicans Can’t Win For Losing?
"'There are Republicans right now scared to death that we’re going to win,' says one Republican leader who did not want to be quoted by name. 'They’re in meetings right now planning ways to revive the subsidies if the [Supreme] Court strikes them down.' ¶ The irony is that Republicans would, in effect, be providing a crucial fix to a law they’ve opposed since its inception. In other words, when Obamacare would be at greatest risk of crumbling, Republicans would be ensuring its survival." Let's not do that. We've been fighting Obamacare for years. Obamacare backlash gave us the House in 2010. Giving away a victory would be intolerable. [rdbrewer]

Kirsten Powers, USA Today: Give the 'bigot' bomb a break
"Life is not a zero-sum game: A person can have redeeming value and disagree — even vigorously and vehemently — with you on issues dear to you. We need to get back to the idea of tolerating differences and debating ideas in the public square." [rdbrewer]
Third Body Pulled Out of the Blanco River, Bringing Texas Weekend Storm Death Toll to 13
Prayers and deepest hopes for those affected... I'm just reading about this now.
Now that Memorial Day has passed, we return you to your usual programming. Yes. This exists. It's a franchise. Ain't they just too cute? - NDH
NYDN: Egyptian woman arrested over racy music video
For "inciting debauchery" (wanking off). [rdbrewer]

Video: Matthew Continetti on CNN Breaks Down The Free Beacon's Unearthing of The Stephanopoulos Donations [rdbrewer]

IAF: Bizarre leaked Avengers clip [rdbrewer]


Chuck Ross: 2 Of Hillary’s Libya Emails Are Missing
"[A] screenshot of Blumenthal’s email inbox, which the Romanian hacker Guccifer published in March 2013, shows two reports about Libya emailed to Clinton which were not released in Friday’s batch." Nice catch. [rdbrewer]
Megan McArdle: Sticker Shock for Some Obamacare Customers
Significant rate increases. [rdbrewer]


Chuck Ross: Here’s Everything We Learned From The Hillary Emails
"Clinton missed a President’s Daily Brief meeting on the morning of Sept. 15, 2012, just days after the Benghazi attack, because she overslept." [rdbrewer]
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