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Showing posts from May 8, 2005

intellectual scabs

This is the kind of post my friend T. will frown at. Having already violated my vow, this week, to make this blog a Hitchens free zone, I am now going to post about one of the “ friends of Hitchens,” Marc Cooper . However, instead of concentrating fire on Cooper’s brand of Bush era leftism – four parts surrender, one part reminder of what a groovy radical past Cooper possesses, why he was even against Pinochet! – let’s expand the parameters to a broader question: why did the New Left generation fail to socially reproduce? This is the kind way to put it. Another way to put it is: why did the generation of 1968 produce such ace putzes of the Cooper/Hitchens variety? First, we should briefly review Cooper’s m.o. In the past year, Cooper has bravely unmasked Naomi Klein as a useful tool of Islamofascist terrorists; has sternly criticized the paranoid rantings of the left re Bush; took up the cudgels against world renowned celebrity Ward Churchill and his plan to reduce your mother, dear re

a pleasure-self post

“The Hadza of northern Tanzania publicly marked a boy’s first nocturnal emission by decorating him with beads in exactly the same way as they decorated a girl with beads at the time of her first menstruation.” Charles Stewart, Erotic Dreams and Nightmares from Antiquity to the Present. "The crocodile signifies a pirate, murderer, or a man who is no less wicked. The way in which the crocodile treats the dreamer determines the way in which he will be treated by the person who is represented by the crocodile. The cat signifies an adulterer. For it is a bird-thief. And birds resemble women, as I have already pointed out in the first book." – Artemidorus, Interpretation of Dreams Whenever LI hears the phrase “mental masturbation” (and for our sins in writing this blog, we hear the phrase quite a bit), we always wonder what the opposite is. What would be full frontal missionary mental fucking, and how would one achieve it with an organ as marooned as is our poor human brain – which


From Today’s Washington Post : “Among the four Marines killed and 10 wounded when an explosive device erupted under their Amtrac on Wednesday were the last battle-ready members of a squad that four days earlier had battled foreign fighters holed up in a house in the town of Ubaydi. In that fight, two squad members were killed and five were wounded. In 96 hours of fighting and ambushes in far western Iraq, the squad had ceased to be. Every member of the squad -- one of three that make up the 1st Platoon of Lima Company, 3rd Battalion, 25th Regiment -- had been killed or wounded, Marines here said. All told, the 1st Platoon -- which Hurley commands -- had sustained 60 percent casualties, demolishing it as a fighting force.” From yesterday’s New York Times: “Mr. Rumsfeld is banking on operations in Iraq and Afghanistan remaining stable enough for him to focus his attention elsewhere. Frequent video-teleconferences with senior commanders in Iraq during the peak of combat operations have dw

Inspissated cockledoodledoo

LI used to ‘do’ Christopher Hitchens more. After a while, though, it got boring. The man’s defense of the indefensible, his substitution of belligerence for logic, his wavering between complete lies and half truths, became a circus sideshow that indicted those who hooted at it as much as those who cheered it – after all, why were us squawkers still watching? My friend, T., kept pointing this out forcefully. After all, why waste one’s time on Hitchen’s inspissated cockledoodledoo when there were more pressing matters to worry about? Existence itself, my next meal, sex and the lack of it around these parts, etc., etc. But the sideshow still runs, and is still, occasionally, funny in that “watching-Friday-the-thirteenth” way – watching, that is, the killer resurrect in the midst of ever more bogus S/FX. So we read, with vast amusement, the copping of old Cold War themes in his essay on Abu Ghraib (and how the horrible left is using it as a propaganda tool against the good old Americans) i

Nine murdered, runaway bride still running

So, nine American soldiers die in Iraq over the weekend. Not one of those soldiers will get a thousandth of the news attention that a woman who didn’t want to get married in Duluth, Georgia, has already received. Not that the press doesn’t support our troops, but really – these guys are so low income. Suckers. Downers. CNN spending time figuring out how these senseless deaths were caused by the manipulations of a brainless Prez? Please. No doubt, the military got busy right away cutting off benefits to the wives and kids. Money goes to the virtuous – to the stockholders of the weapons companies, the private military contractors, the consultants, and the wonderful, inbred round of retired legislatures and generals who sit on boards and hold down important positions in the Death industry and will devise ways to keep America, in big ways and small, a vicious and uncompanionable country. And the great deferrers who so bravely lead them have, stoically, kept a stiff upper lip. Rumsfeld’s au

Smoke on the water

LI mentioned punitive liberalism in our last post. In the Reformer, a British journal, the Spring issue is headlines articles about civil liberties and the “therapeutic” state – a state that is no longer big brother, but is simply your best friends intervening to make sure you are no longer a menace to yourself. In the friendliest way possible. With big Tony Blair smiles. The Reformer is obviously oriented towards the classical liberalism of Mill. LI does not subscribe to the classical liberalism of Mill. Or at least we are inspired by that thematic in Mill that made him ever more sympathetic to socialism. But the British journal isn’t into Cato kneejerk libertarianism. There’s a nice recognition, for instance, that environmental harm is a serious issue, rather than a conspiracy made up by junk scientists – the favorite rightwing meme. Claire Fox’s essay on smoking bans was particularly nice. We liked this graf: “It is through the prism of passive smoking that we have seen the issue

news from austin

A friend wrote to tease me about the protests against Ann Coulter here in Austin. I didn’t even know Ann Coulter was coming to Austin. I feel about Ann Coulter and her movements the way Sherlock Holmes felt about the heliocentric theory, when Watson introduced him to the subject in Study in Scarlet: “My surprise reached a climax, however, when I found incidentally that he was ignorant of the Copernican Theory and of the composition of the Solar System. That any civilized human being in this nineteenth century should not be aware that the earth travelled round the sun appeared to be to me such an extraordinary fact that I could hardly realize it. "You appear to be astonished," he said, smiling at my expression of surprise. "Now that I do know it I shall do my best to forget it." But if I was young and full of cum and a liberal undergrad at U.T., I’m sure that I would have thought protesting A.C. was just the thing to do. One has to teethe, no? And a little tussle wit