The Daily Dump

Two new forays into stupid from Adnrew today. Here they are in order.

#1.) THE FACE OF REPRESSION: Here’s a photo of an Iranian blogger, one of more than 20 detained by the theo-fascists for freedom of expression. Money quote: “My interrogator punched me in the head and stomach and kicked me in the back many times to force me confess to having illegal sex and endangered national security through my writings, Mazrouei said.” He was blindfolded for 66 days in solitary confinement. And yes, it pains me that now every defender of the Islamists can say that U.S. custody is just as bad as the Iranians – and, in many cases, far worse. We have squandered a part of the critical moral difference that justifies our fight.

No, petunia, ‘every defender of the Islamists’ CAN NOT ‘say that U.S. custody is just as bad as the Iranians – and, in many cases, far worse.’ Well- they can say it, but they are either lying or as stupid as you are choosing to be on this issue. I mean, you seriously are not going to compare years of unrepentant torture, to include stonings, mass executions, etc., with regrettable but seemingly isolated incidents of degradation and low-scale torture.

This is not condoning or white-washing the evil that was committed at Abu Ghraib, but how about some perspective. The last I checked, our entire nation was outraged, we were investigating the charges, and people were on trial. That would tend to point to some difference between us and the Islamists.

#2.)

“WHERE HE PUT HIS WING-WANG”: This, apparently, is Glenn Reynold’s view of what being gay is. And Glenn is on the side of the angels in this. It’s enough to make you despair.

Apparently anything is enough to make America’s #1 gay advocate despair, because here is Glenn’s post:

WAS LINCOLN GAY? Andrew Sullivan cares, and so do the folks at The Weekly Standard. I can’t seem to, though. The guy saved the nation, and I’m supposed to care about where he put his wing-wang?

Pretty clearly, Glenn was stating that he doesn’t give a shit if Lincoln was gay or not, and given Glenn’s track record in favor of gay equality, it takes some work to find reason for despair.

Curiously, Andrew’s ‘despair’ seems to be centered around Glenn’s statement regarding Lincoln’s wing-wang. Glenn’s p[osition, from my standpoint is the only logical position to take. Andrew is consistently (and correctly) railing for equal treatemnt and equal rights, and the thrust (no pun intended) of his argument is that homosexuals are human beings, and therefore no different heterosexuals. Except for that little issue of where they (as the Instaprof so delicately stated) stick their ‘wing-wang.’

Unless there is something else that systematically makes homosexuals different from heterosexuals, I think Glenn’s position (ignore punb possibilities, please) is the enlightened one here- the only difference between the two collective groups is the placement of the ‘wing-wang’ during sexual activities.

Well- one group may have more fashion sense and a love of show tunes, but I learned that from Bravo!








The ‘Moon’nesota Vikings

So Randy Moss pretended to moon the fans. Big deal. After every Packer victory, their fans actually moon the opposition team busses. The world has not ended. This is not a sign of the apocalypse.

Yes, I preferred the way Johnny Unitas and Barry Sanders celebrated touchdowns- handing the ball to the official. But this whole Ranyd Moss bit is absurd. And Tom Jackson and Chris Berman, both of whom I normally love, have gone off the deep-end over this. I thought Tom Jackson was going to need a hockey puck sized valium he was so upset.








Good Grief

Here we go again.

In a previous post, I was jokingly pointing out to Matt that 24 was in fact a fictional series, as he seemed to be waging an argument against torture with the plot of 24 as the other end of the argument (not surprisingly, 24 was providing a pretty shitty argument for the case of torture). This seems to have upset Jim Henley quite dearly.

In a post that is almost too lengthy for me to summarize, Jim argues (and argues and argues and argues) that I should not mock Matt’s insistence on comparing the fictional 24 to reality, as- after all, this is fiction, and therefore ripe for esthetic criticism (why do I always want to put an ‘a’ in front of esthetic?).

If that were all Matt were doing, I would agree- because that is all Jim was doing in his post here and here, which were referenced in Matt’s post, and which I read. And surprise, surprise- I didn’t tease Jim for his posts. Why?

BECAUSE IT WAS CLEAR THAT JIM WAS MAKING ESTHETIC JUDGEMENTS ABOUT THE SHOW. In Matt’s class, it appeared as if he as viewing a real news report, or at least real torture policy, and providing counter arguments for any policy warranting or calling for torture. It appeared to me that Matt was taking the show a little too seriously. Check out these statements:

I watched the second season of 24 religiously, then rented season one on DVD, but somehow never got into season three. Watched the first episode of season four last night, and was a bit sorry to see the show making just about the most juvenile case for terrorism one can imagine. That’s about all the watching of this season I intend to do.

and

I’ll just add that Episode One’s portrayal of torture as an easy, moral method of rapidly acquiring accurate information from suspected terrorists sort of undermines the whole show’s plotting. If you can really get the bad guys to fess up in 90 seconds by putting a bullet in someone’s knee, then Bauer should be torturing people all the time and not pussyfooting around with all this satellite surveillance, deception, etc. But now all of a sudden what was a great idea Sunday night doesn’t even seem to be on the table. If only CTU would abandon these liberal pieties and start organizing some death squads, then we could lick this problem.

I doubt the writer’s were thinking of 24 as a vehicle for easing moral qualms about torture. In fact, I am willing to bet that the scene was written that way just to get to the next scene. They do have 24 hours to fill, you know?

Now, as I am not in favor of torture (unless it involves people whose children scream in public places or people who damage other peopel’s cars in parking lots), it is not my obligation to provide arguments *FOR* torture. And I won’t. Not even for fake torture in fake shows. But I will spend this time to point out that a fictional show that markets itself as ‘realistic’ has no obligation to be real, and that anyone who watched the first two seasons and was capable of swallowing the amazing exploits of Kim Bauer should be able to handle the fictional use of torture in season Four (I would link to all of Matt’s previous posts about 24, but about every 6 months he seems to lose his archive).

And, once again, Jim. I was just teasing Matt.

*** Update ***

See- I told ya so. And this heresy must be squashed.








Armstrong Williams/CBS

I haven’t commented on the whole CBS report/Armstrong Williams affair because, well, I haven’t commented on anything in a few days. My positions:

Williams- Stupid all the way around. Stupid for Williams to accept the money, stupid for the administration to offer the money. And probably illegal. This doesn’t outrage me that much, because I don’t think the money influenced Williams’s position- he has always been in favor of school vouchers. However, when the administration screws up such simple things like this- something that is so blatantly wrong, it makes me worry about how they really are handling the more important issues of the day. Like, say, Iraq.








Ahem…

Dear Matt,

I respect you, so I am sincerely asking you take a deep breath.

24is a fictional television series. That means it is made up, and is intended to be broadcast for entertainment purposes. This made me giggle:

If you can really get the bad guys to fess up in 90 seconds by putting a bullet in someone’s knee, then Bauer should be torturing people all the time and not pussyfooting around with all this satellite surveillance, deception, etc. But now all of a sudden what was a great idea Sunday night doesn’t even seem to be on the table. If only CTU would abandon these liberal pieties and start organizing some death squads, then we could lick this problem.

You know why Jack Bauer shot one guy and not another? Because it was in the fricking script.

I hate to have to say this, but based on the tone and tenor of your previous posts, it may be necessary. At any rate, I think you need to know- Kiefer Sutherland really didn’t shoot anyone. It was all fake- so when you get done analyzing 24, please don’t call the California State Police with information about some gruesome shootings you saw on television.

Up Next- Matt discusses the Grinch that Stole Christmas and the effectiveness of Neighborhood Watch Groups during the Holiday seasons.

BTW- Happy Blogiversary!