Friday, August 31, 2007

The War Museum

I'm sure our Canadian readers have head how some vets are all up in arms about the fact that the Canadian War Museum mentions that the effectiveness of the bombing campaigns in Europe is still contested, because apparently even mentioning the controversy dishonours the troops.

A Globe and Mail reader offers this completely awesome suggestion, very much in line with my suggestion that we rename the dollar the "Hero Token":

August 30, 2007
Edmonton -- Let's just rename the museum, which now has the horrendous three-letter word "war" displayed so prominently. I suggest the more modern "Support Our Troops" and redesigning the building as a massive yellow ribbon.

Delicious Hypocrisy

So, Bill Clinton's a "nasty, naughty boy," is he?

Yes, because consensual sex in private with someone who's not your wife is so much worse than getting arrested for soliciting an in-the-stall blowjob from someone who's not your wife.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Vitter v. Craig

Why is it that Larry "Tap Tap" Craig is being forced from all his posts by the Republicans, but, strangely, nothing happened to David "Marriage is a sacred vow between a man and a woman" Vitter (who also broke the law by hiring prostitutes)?

Couldn't have anything to do with Teh Gays, could it?

Because really, cheating on your wife by hiring some tramp is so much less reprehensible than tapping your foot a few times and reaching under the stall (I'm not defending Craig, but it would seem that in one instance a penis got inserted somewhere and in another, there wasn't.)

(For the lolcat clueless out there, the "Teh" is deliberate.)

More on honouring our vets

Some comments need special attention. In response to this posting, commentator Canadian Tar Heel make the following point:

While I appreciate the debate over the name "Highway of Heroes" as opposed to something like "Veterans Highway", I find this post overly caustic to make a cheap point. Remembering and valuing the work of our armed forces is hardly "trite", even if you feel that displays of such appreciation (eg, yellow ribbons) are "facile".
The vexed problem with this is that it makes any proposal to "honour" our soldieras prima facie valid, and makes any criticism on any basis (i.e. it's a stupid idea) tantamount to not "supporting" the troops. Ridiculous. This equates meaningful gestures (sending aid packages, letters, volunteering to help veterans or disabled soldiers) with ridiculous proposals (renaming entire cities or sections of freeway) and with emtpy gestures (yellow ribbons.)

Let's take this premise to its logical conclusion. I propose the following: The dollar be renamed "The Hero Token" (with its new abbreviation HT--i.e. "On sale for HT4.99!") and while we are at war, instead of "hello," the customary salutation between two individuals be "Honoured are our soldiers," to which the response must be "Let them be honoured."

And anyone who says this is foolishness--well, you just don't support the troops, do you? Why do you hate freedom?

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Making excuses for stupidity

Okay. The Today Show brought that stupid girl from South Carolina on today to excuse her idiot performance. She was "nervous" and "overwhelmed" and she "only heard a few words of the question." And the hosts are being all nice, "oh we say dumb things too" and "aren't you great for coming on to laugh at yourself."


First, if you didn't hear the question, you could have just asked to have it repeated.

And I don't care how damn nervous you are--you can still cobble together some kind of coherent response, instead of standing up there "like, such as, like, such as, and so forth, with the Iraq."

Every word out of her bimbo mouth dripped stupidity and vapidness.

Sometimes, people are just stupid. Plain and simple. Dumb. A waste of space. Fit for menial labour. And that's it. We shouldn't be falling over ourselves to make excuses for their braindeadness.

Nervous, my ass. She won Ms. Teen South Carolina. She clearly had a coach who told her "make sure you mention Iraq and make sure you mention helping the world." Had she been asked "what is your favourite colour" we probably would have gotten the same sort of answer.

And nervousness doesn't even begin to excuse the obvious dumbness--like "some people don't have maps" and "the Iraq."

Stupid. Blonde. Vacuous. And that's it.

Ugh...Larry Craig...

Okay. I have no problem with Larry Craig getting busted. And I'll leave for others to comment on just how hypocritical the GOP is, particularly Craig who did whatever he could to make gays' lives unpleasant.

But really, boys, can we all STOP getting busted doing things like this? I mean, how many people read that story and thought, "God, aren't those gays icky? Having sex in bathrooms? Why on earth should we treat them well?"

I mean, if you want anonymous sex, jesus, go to Craigslist.

That said, the cop that busted him is pretty cute. I might be tempted.

Monday, August 27, 2007

I personally believe . .. .

No wonder South Carolina voted for Bush.

I personally believe that U.S. Americans are unable to do so because uh some people out there in our nation don't have maps and I believe that our education like such as in South Africa and the Iraq everywhere like such as and I believe that they should our education over here in the U.S. should help the U.S. or should help South Africa and should help the Iraq and the Asian countries so we will be able to build up our future....

Friday, August 24, 2007

Renaming the 401

Apparently McGuinty has come up with the air-headed idea to rename the 401 (the MacDonald-Cartier freeway) "Highway of Heroes." (h/t to Red Tory.)

Such foolishness. Quite apart from the fact that the freeway already has a name--and a good one--the idea that we need to do more to "support the troops" by renaming a freeway is facile and (red tory's words) trite.

First, I really doubt that most veterans consider themselves "heroes." My grandfather, who fought in the Second World War, lost most of his friends in the process, and served in the military for over a decade afterwards, would never think of himself as a hero.

Second, and more importantly, this is all part of that idiot idea that by naming things after "heroes" and by wearing yellow ribbons to "support the troops," we're actually doing something meaningful. It's a way for people to feel good about sending other people's kids to die.

So--all you who think that this is "doing something" to "support the troops," please provide the following:
  • The names of any soldier who in any way feels that this is "supporting" him or her--not some unverifiable "oh it does make the soldiers feel better" based on speculation.
  • What you SPECIFICALLY have done to support the troops, and by that I mean things like donated money/time to a veterans' organisation, sending money to charities for soldiers, sent care packages, donated money to any other organization, or in any way altered your behaviour/spending/consumption for their benefit.

Because otherwise it's all just nonsense.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

LolCats, LolJean, Racism, and Stupidity

Okay. Some anonymous commenter has accused us of being racist because we posted these pictures about Michaelle Jean.

Of course, if this person (persons?) had actually read the post fully, s/he would have seen this link, which goes to the very fun explanation concerning lolcats at Or even these links here, here, here, and here. That's what we were doing--making a lolcat about Jean. (Well, to be fair, my much-funner-than-me colleague did.) (The commenter also said s/he/it wasn't going to follow our links. Yes, because educating yourself would have undermined your point. It's always best to knowingly refuse to learn the facts before taking a hard line position on something you know nothing about. Works in my legal practice all the time.)

And anyone who's ever read this Blog (all 5 of you (thank you!)) must be fully aware of just how much we revere Jean. And Clarkson. But not Harper (the white dude.)

But this obscures the broader issue: Posting something humourous about a black person/minority isn't always racism. What, you can never make fun of a minority because it's automatically racism? Only white people are fair targets? (Incidentally, whiteboys get targeted too. For example,

This reminds me of my last year in law school. I taught legal research to first year students, and one of my students was friends with a bunch of southern black baptist girls. She sent them that joke email to Dr. Laura (should I stone my neighbour, etc.) and cc'd me. One of them responded something to the effect of homosexuality is wrong immoral evil because God says so, which is simply not something I would let lie. I replied, basically calling her stupid and saying it was a good thing we had lots of people like her in the law school to take up the bottom half of the grade curve.

Well. Suddenly I'm racist. Huh? Here's a girl who invokes scripture instead of any kind of rational argument, and when she's called stupid (which, incidentally, I think of anyone who invokes the Sky God as justification for anything) she pulls the racist card?! Please. There's no limit to stupidity--black people, white people, asians, homos, breeders. Indeed, I think we're on record too for saying that the overwhelming majority of people in the world are pretty brain dead.

So, anonymous commenter: Since you flew off the handle, accused us of being racist WITHOUT EVEN THE SLIGHTEST INVESTIGATION, consideration, thought, or question--You're probably pretty stupid too.

And, Mr. Anonymous, if you'd like to explain, NOW, after you've hopefully clicked those links above to see exactly what lolcats are, how it's at all racist, please, go ahead.

We are neither racist, stupid, or AT ALL into making fun of the Governor-General. In fact, we worship her.

Anonymous commenters with ill-informed outrage should get a grip.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007


My colleague (American, btw) put these together. Awesome.

(For those who are confused, here's an explanation. And here's the best site ever.)

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

What are the Yankees wearing??

This is just wrong. He and his Ambassador show up for a meeting with our Viceroy, the Commander in Chief of the Armed Forces of Canada, personal representative of the Queen in Canada, and our de facto head of state, and they're dressed like they went in grey flannels and a shirt to a fancy restaurant and the maitre'd told them they needed a jacket and a tie and took them to the side room where they keep a collection of mismatched and ill-fitted jackets handy for those who don't actually know the first thing about protocol.

Of course, this is also from the guy who winked at the Queen, greeted Tony Blair with "Yo, Blair," and gave Angela Merkel a backrub.

One's Hurricane Namesake

I do find it absolutely delicious that Hurricane Dean recently smote Jamaica. And on that note I'll post Dan Savage's post in its entirety:

So. Jamaica.

Jamaica is one of the most anti-gay places on earth. Gays and lesbians are routinely set upon by mobs and lynched. Wiki says

In the Caribbean, Jamaica is by far the most dangerous place for sexual minorities, with frequent and often fatal attacks against gay men fostered by a popular culture that idolizes reggae and dancehall singers whose lyrics call for burning and killing gay men.

And now a category 4 hurricane is headed straight for Jamaica.

So… what will the assholes that said the 2004 Asian Tsunami was God’s way of letting Sweden know that He hates Swedes for tolerating homosexuals, and that Hurricane Katrina was God’s way of expressing his displeasure with abortion, say now?

What they tell us if God has sent a hurricane to wipe one of the most homophobic countries in the world off the face of the earth?

Gee, maybe God hates reggae.

Friday, August 17, 2007

Right Wing Nuts

This video is awesome. Details how the British ruined everything.

But let's see:

1. Churchill was pals with Hitler. Um? The truth, of course, is that Britain and the Empire stood alone against the Germans/Italians while the US sat on the side for 3 years. Twice.

2. Queen Elizabeth invested in the slave trade. No. Unless I'm really clueless, the slave trade wasn't all that large in the late 16th century. (Of course, they don't mention that it's Elizabeth I, to confuse people.) And: Britain banned slavery--and actively suppressed it--decades before the United States did. And did so without a civil war. And didn't have segregation into the 1960s.

3. Britain worships kings while the US is a democracy. Quite apart from having a President installed by a Court, that ignore the fact that the monarchy is symbolic and Britain has a far more vibrant democracy than the US (i.e. hated prime ministers don't stick around long.)

I could go on. But better to let you pick the holes in it yourself, fair reader.

Hat tip to Red Tory.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Stupid PCism

Okay. This is ridiculous. Apparently the Danish Culture Minster has apologized for the Vikings.

That's right. The culture minister from a civilized and perfectly decent little country, a country which defied the Nazis and rose up to rescue almost the entire Jewish population, has apologized for something which happened over 1200 years ago.

Ridiculous. That's the height of PC bullshit. And there is not a single country in the world that hasn't oppressed its neighbours, at some point, and then probably been oppressed by them in return.

It maybe--and only maybe--is okay to apologize for things that have happened in recent memory. (That said, I refuse the collective guilt. It is not my fault that 100 years ago the Government wasn't nice to Chinese immigrants/natives/etc. And I question the idea of 'closure'--your ancestors did something bad to my ancestors but apologizing will 'heal me' and bring 'closure' is idiotic pop-psychology Maury idiocy.)

But for something like that? Jesus. What's next? Italy apologizing to Tunisa for destroying Carthage? Egypt apologizing to Sudan for killing Nubians 2000 years BCE? Turkey apologizing to Austria for laying siege to Vienna?

And: Think of the Mongolians. Even though Genghis Kahn was a nasty guy and his invading armies not so nice, they are proud of his legacy.

H/T to Red Tory. Whose blog you should read too.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

An old letter to the NYT

Alas never published but I like it still. Should be self explanatory:

July 10, 2007

Re: A Nominee's Abnormal Views

To the Editor:

I was taken aback to see in your otherwise-good editorial that you refer to gay men and women as "practicing homosexuals."

I no more "practice" my "homosexuality" than I "practice" being male, blue-eyed, and short. I can't change those things, nor can I (or would I) change my sexual orientation. I can change the things that I do "practice," such as being an attorney, piano playing, and cooking (and I practice them with the hopes of getting better!)

Your reference to "practicing homosexuals" unfortunately hearkens back to the dark past, where it was thought that being gay was a choice, something that could be turned on or off or stopped at will, rather than something inherent to who we are.

The funny thing is, the people who call it a choice are the ones who've never had to make it.


[Dean P]

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Paul Wells on the Cabinet

This must be the best posting on the cabinet shuffle all day. In full:

Secretary Rice's Briefing Note

TREAT AS SECRET-- SecState eyes only --

The new guy from Canada may even be hotter than the last one.

Give me a break

Seriously, these two need to get a life. Two lesbians wanted to use a church to have their NJ wedding. The Church said no. They sued.

Now: if they had applied to use a public property and been told no, that would be one thing. But the Church is the Church and it's private and they can do what they want.

First, it's stupid--because no doubt these two will be the poster girls to say, "Look, they want more than civil marriages, they want to force churches to recognize their marriages too." People like this do far more harm than good.

Second, it's more stupid--because if we force churches to let us in, then we have to let crazy religious nutjobs into our private spaces. Your center for gay youth now has to let christians come in and "convert" (extreme example, granted.)

Seriously, these two women should just get a uhaul and go down to the local Home Depot and get married in the parking lot and not make the rest of us look bad.

Sullivan's dishonesty continues

Andrew Sullivan is at it again. He mildly disapproves of Barak Obama's stance on gay marriage, but then has to get a dig in at Hillary.

Give me a freakin' break, Sullivan. Don't pretend that Gay Marriage is now some sort of litmus test whereby candidates should be judged. And don't speculate that Clinton will "play politics" when you have no evidence of that.

But most importantly, try and be a little more honest. The minute a Republican comes along who promises smaller government and lower taxes, you'll get on your knees and suck his dick, no matter what his stance on gay marriage is. You're a life-long Republican, and happily supported Bush the first time around, even though anyone with half a brain could see where he was going. You sold us out every time singing Republican hosannas.

Sit back, Sullivan, and shut up while those of us who've always been Democrats actually fix things.

Republican Mediocrity

What is up with everyone important in the Republican party being academic failures? First, we hear that some hundred attorneys in the Dubya White House are graduates of Regent Law School--a place that not even mediocre law firms would ever consider hiring from?

And now--and this is a surprise to me--we hear that Rove--the "Boy Genius" didn't even graduate from college.

Bush--a failed businessman; a C student. Monica Goodling. Karl Rove.

Good lord, let's even contrast Harriet Meirs credentials with those of, say, Beverly McLachlin.

Mediocrity. Incompetence. But connected. Well done.

Monday, August 13, 2007

Big Black Buck defence

This video is awesome. I'm sure we've all heard that Florida state senator Bob Allen (R) was busted for offering a cop $20 to give him a blowjob. The fun part is a) Allen had introduced a bill calling for tougher penalties for soliciting sex, and b) Allen now says he was intimidated by the big scary black guy and went along with it.

What is up with Republicans trying to ban something with one hand while they're giving someone else a reacharound with the other? Foley, Haggard, Allen all denouncing homos while sucking dick in their spare time, and then all the Family Friendly straights who cheat on their spouses or have multiple divorces or whatnot?

Well, if I could do it I'd test the theory--I'd take Allen out to Compton and stick him on the street corner and see if he just was so scared he got down on his knees and opened up his mouth.

Yet more on Abortion

Commentator Cerberus makes a comment that is worth posting in full. Read on:

Excellent point Dean. To anyone who claims that a fetus is a full human life deserving of all of the same treatment as a born human, we should be asking them if they really truly mean that.If they believe that, would they:

- want to convict the mother and the physician with homicide with no chance of parole for 25 years (or, given that most pro-lifers are conservative, no parole at all or even execution). (If the analogy to homicide is to be carried through properly (showing how ridiculous the whole notion is), the woman is not merely consenting to the homicide but hiring a contract killer.)

- when a miscarriage occurs, should there be a full coroners enquiry and report at taxpayers expense?

- if it turned out that the mother's actions may have had some contribution to a miscarriage, should she be convicted with homicide, manslaughter or reckless endangerment?

- I have a cousin who went past term, went into the doctor on a Friday who said let's wait the weekend and schedule an induced delivery for Monday. The fetus was lifeless on Monday. Should the doctor be charged with a criminal offense (rather than just be investigated or sued for malpractice)?

Put the question this way, and you will find the little support for criminalizing abortion evaporate very quickly.

Is Ontario coming back?

This is very interesting. Harper and Quebec are getting cozy about formal limits to the federal spending power. McGuinty responds: "I'm proud of Ontario, proud to lead this province, but I'm a Canadian first. At the end of the day, we need a strong federal government that reminds us that we're all in this together."

How long has it been since we've had this sort of statement from Ontario? I've always been proud to be Ontarian--in the sense that we could count on Ontario to do what was right for Canada, not just for Ontario. I don't think we've seen much of that in the last few years (see, e.g., that idiot "Council of the Federation" which is a club to get together to bash Ottawa), but perhaps McGuinty, with an election breathing down his neck, is realizing that most Ontarians do actually like the idea of Ontario being the strong helpful fixer in the federation.

After all, my experience is that most Ontarians don't really have a sense of an "Ontario identity" (cynical view: that's because Ontarians think of Canada and Ontario as one in the same and of Canada as Ontario writ large). Everyone likes the idea of their province having more powers, sure, but I think Ontarians are confident enough that they can step back and realize that a weak federal government is bad.

Of course, I write this as an unreconstructed Trudeauvian centrist . . .

Noone Mourns The Wicked*

Well, well, well, Karl Rove is stepping down. To "spend more time with his family." (I don't buy that one--how many politicians/executives/wankers who find themselves in bad positions or falling out of favour suddenly realize they want to see their kids more?")

There is, behind all of Rove's nasty horribleness, behind his demonizing of democrats/gays/war opponents, behind his divisive and toxic tactics, one little glimmer of goodness: Rather than making a permanent Republican majority, he may have turned voters away from Republicans for a long, long time. We shouldn't have had to stack the Supreme Court, shred the constitution, bankrupt the country, enter into a pointless war, lose a major city, etc etc etc to get there, of course.

I'll also leave to those more versed in American politics than me to speculate on reasons and timing. Though given that there was speculation Libby fell on his sword and then was pardoned in order to protect Rove, I wonder if that had anything to do with it.

And, of course, Rove will still be safe from Congress (see, e.g., Harriet Meirs' invocation of executive privilege.)

*hat tip to David for the title

Update: Hindsight is so 20/20, Sullivan.

Abortion idiots

So here we have people demonstrating against abortion and insisting that it be illegal, and yet not a single one of them--despite having been protesting for years--can think of what the penalty should be for a woman who's had an abortion:

(Can't embed--it was disabled).

Hat tip to David in DC.

UPDATE: Mike and David are musing about how fun it would be to ask all those presidential candidates who are against abortion the same question. For example:

Mr. Romney, you have consistently gone on the record stating that you believe abortion should be illegal, and that it is the equivalent of murder [ref needed]. What forms of punishment for such murder would you think acceptable, and would you consider the mother a murderer or co-conspirator in the committing of murderer?

Sunday, August 12, 2007

More on the draft

So some others are discussing the possible consequences of having a draft. Riots in the streets, eh?

Well, I should hope so. But it shows how pathetic people are. No riots in the streets when other people's children were at risk--and, indeed, those of us who were against the war from day 1 were labeled traitors and unpatriotic and accused of wanting to let the "terrorists" win--but then when there's a chance that our own children (or even we ourselves) might get sent to war, well, then we'd have riots.

People suck.

Saturday, August 11, 2007

Back to the Draft

To be honest, I have no problem with the suggestion we should consider moving back to a draft.

Too much of the problem with this idiot war and the idiot public that supports it is that it has no consequences for anyone. Right now the Republicans pretend that we can have a war, and tax cuts, and send other people's kids to die and still all be happy (while banning gay marriage.) And they can get away with saying "my sons haven't enlisted but they serve the country by helping me get elected." Or people can spend a buck ninety-nine for a yellow sticker saying "I support the troops" which they can stick on the back of their SUVs and consume and not make the slightest sacrifice.

But if it were the case that when you vote for some war monger, your own kids might go to war, or you might have to ration or pay higher taxes, people might cheer a little less loudly.

This is the corollary to the Starship Troopers idea that only people who have served can vote. You should only be allowed to say "I support the troops" unless you've served, or you've kids who's served. Otherwise it's a meaningless phrase, the invocation of which shouldn't be used to get you off the hook and make others seem unpatriotic.

Thursday, August 09, 2007

Friday, August 03, 2007

Privilege my ass

This is nonsense. This White House flunky says basically he a) can't talk about what he told the President; b) he can't talk about whether he talked to the President; and c) he can't talk about what his job is.

That's BULL-SHIT. Let's assume, only for the sake of argument, that there really is such a thing as the executive privilege and it insulates this minion from having to disclose the substance of his conversation. Fine. That might be valid.

But the other two, b) and c), are simply not. Privilege protects the substance of a conversation, not its fact. You don't have to talk about what you say to your doctor or your lawyer, but you can't hide the fact you saw your lawyer or you went to the doctor covered in blood.

And you certainly can't claim privilege for a job description!

This is the state we're in--autocracy. We're at a point where the administration stands up and says, in the face of every question, "I don't recall," or "I can't answer."

Do we really live in a modern democracy? I feel like this is how Soviet Russia must have felt: Any time it wants to do something, the government says "national security." And then when it gets called on it, it says "We can't talk about it. National security."

Who knew democracy could be destroyed in 6 short years?

Hat tip to CC.