Thursday, September 02, 2004

"I wish I was over there, where I could get a little closer up into your face."

Okay, the most important news of the day is that the ever-testy states of the former Yugoslavia have found the answer to regional peace: kung fu.

In the meantime, for those of us who recall the days when Ronnie and Maggie were awfully chummy, a fact that had some of us hiding beneath our beds waiting for nuclear winter, might be interested to know that one of the dear Lady's son's has shown a recent propensity for, ahem, politics. African politics, anyway. Lady Thatcher has apparently paid a pretty penny to get her spirited sprog out of the fix he's gotten himself into. Though sending mercenaries to overthrow governments might be a step up from breaking the neighbor's window with a poorly aimed cricket at-bat.

Speaking of wastral off-spring old enough to know better, there is an article in Salon today. (you can get into Salon by watching the ads if you aren't a subscriber) It is well worth reading, and has some rather interesting descriptions about a certain wearer of flight suits in his mid-twenties, such as:

"After about a month I asked Jimmy what was Georgie's job, because I couldn't figure it out. I never saw him do anything...."

"But then no one understood why he brought this young guy from Texas along. It was like, 'Who was this guy who comes in late and leaves early? ..."

There is also a fair amount of property trashed, public urination, obscenities yelled at police officers, and a passive agressive temper tantrum aimed at the family matriarch. As my own mother pointed out, most people have grown out of such behavior by the time they are twenty-six.

Speaking of which, tonight is the night when the PoTUS will bless us all with his deep thoughts. I'm still reeling from last night's speeches. After much discussion, some handwringing and a whole lotta GOP gloating, Zell Miller delivered his keynote address at the RNC last night. Indeed, one might think that this was just a lack of familiarity with the Yankee capitols of New York and Boston, but anyone who has taken a gander at Miller's record would realize that he is a Joe Lieberman kinda Democrat. You know, a Republican. So the 'coup' of getting a "Democrat" to speak at the RNC isn't much of a coup if you bother to check the record. But on to the speech!

Some of the highlights looked like this:

"Motivated more by partisan politics than by national security, today's Democratic leaders see America as an occupier, not a liberator.

And nothing makes this Marine madder than someone calling American troops occupiers rather than liberators.

Tell that to the one-half of Europe that was freed because Franklin Roosevelt led an army of liberators, not occupiers."

Perhaps Senator Miller could explain why he thinks Europe needs to be "told" that America is occupying Iraq? Earth to Senator Miller-- they know! Guess what else? The war in Iraq could hardly be more different from World War II!

But nevermind, we'll leave the finer points of that historical argument, and move on to a decidedly more interesting one: Senator Miller's claim that Kerry would be so lax on security as to virtually invite terrorists to take up roost in the Capitol building. " And no pair has been more wrong, more loudly, more often than the two Senators from Massachusetts, Ted Kennedy and John Kerry." Well, now that is a strong claim! There are lots of pairs out there in Washington making some serious mistakes! So if you got some proof pardner, why don't you (ahem) Bring. It. On.

The proof that Senator Miller offers is to assert that Kerry voted against funding the B-1 bomber, the B-2 bomber, the F-14 A and F-14 D fighter jets, the F-15 and Apache helicopters. This supported the claims later on in the night made by the VP that "During the 1980s, Senator Kerry opposed Ronald Reagan's major defense initiatives that brought victory in the Cold War." Both of these claims are dismantled in an article published today in Slate, where Fred Kaplan shows the lie to these claims: "Kerry did not vote to kill these weapons, in part because none of these weapons ever came up for a vote, either on the Senate floor or in any of Kerry's committees."

Now there is fudging the edges, and then there is just not telling the truth. The claim was laid down that Kerry voted against funding these weapons: but there were no votes. So how did he vote against a vote that didn't happen? Either a) some people were lying like rugs last night; or b) this is actually an indictment against Kerry for an assumed thoughtcrime; or c) both. (Big Brother can see and hear you) The Slate article is an important one, and worth the time to read it, even if (especially if) you or someone you know hasn't seen it yet. They may be lying about someone else, but they are lying to you.

On the elephantile deflation note of the evening, the Zell Miller coup may in fact have turned out to be not as useful as initially reported. Yes, he calls himself a "Democrat" and he is voting for Dubya. But he's also a frigging box of museli: all nuts, fruits and flakes. After the convention the Senator went on the air to discuss his speech with MSNBC's Chris Matthews. There was clearly a mic-feed problem and the 72-year old senator was both on a delay and appeared to be having problems hearing, but he also came off as having far fewer sandwiches then could rightly be called a picnic. He became quite agitated by Matthews' questioning style (which is closer to the Bill O'Reilly shut up than to the Oprah tell me what you think), and threatened a couple of times to quit the interview. He also answered many of Matthews' questions with talking points that were not at all related. Finally he just got downright ornery, telling him he wished he were in the studio because then he "could get a little closer up into your face," and then telling Matthews "I wish we lived in the day where you could challenge a person to a duel." Uhhhh, Senator, that whole dueling thing didn't work out so hot for Alexander Hamilton you know. One wonders if it would be pistols or sabers.

So the final word on Zell Miller and the RNC: yeah, y'all got yourselves a Democrat alright, but what does it say when the only guy you could get to cross party lines is, as the Irish say, a bit touched?

Finally, I just have to point out that even claiming to have Britney Spear's used gum, even for the purpose of making money on e-Bay, is just gross.


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