Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Last Call

Shorter Netanyahu to President Obama:  "Yeah, you know that speech you made on Sunday?  Yeah, cram it where the sun don't shine."

A day after being urged by the US president to allow more time for sanctions against Tehran to bite before resorting to military action, Mr Netanyahu said Israel would remain "master of its fate".
"Israel must have the ability always to defend itself by itself against any threat," Mr Netanyahu said. "When it comes to Israel's security, Israel has the right, the sovereign right, to make its own decisions".
The two leaders met on Monday for critical talks at the White House aimed at agreeing a common stance towards Tehran's nuclear enrichment programme and alleged plan to develop a nuclear weapon.
While Mr Obama has said he will "not hesitate to use force" if required to stop Iran developing the Bomb, the White House is anxious to avoid a confrontation, particularly during his re-election campaign.
Israeli officials have indicated they may strike this year unless the US threatens action to prevent Tehran having the capability to develop a weapon, rather than waiting for signs that development has begun. 

This does not fill me with hope that the Israelis are going to wait until after the election.  Not at all.  hell, they may not wait until next month the way Bibi is going here.  The only question is now what the President's response will be.  His speech on Sunday sounded very much like he wasn't going to back action against Iran unless it was "necessary".  The problem is politically, if Israel does attack, it becomes "necessary" immediately.  Congress will see to that.

This may actually be out of the President's hands.  I pray that's not the case.  But Bibi's response here was clearly to Congress, not the President.

Also note that Israel and Iran aren't too far apart on rhetoric:  Iran says its nuclear program is a sovereign issue as well.  That's not a good sign.

Your Daily Geekery



Another Milepost On The Road To Oblivion

Rick Santorum keeps it classy ahead of today's vote.

Republican presidential candidate Rick Santorum compared the Obama administration to a drug dealer who wants to get Americans hooked on entitlement programs to expand his power.

Santorum said the president's health care law in a new addictive drug.

"That's how they see you, as people, to get hooked like a drug dealer, someone to become dependent on them and once that happens, they got you," Santorum said during a speech to several hundred people at Grace Church late Sunday. "America is changed forever. No country that has socialized medicine has ever gone back the other way, no country that has lost its freedom has ever regained it."

You're all ghetto junkies, you people who want dialysis and colon cancer screenings and heart medication.  Real Americans wouldn't need medicine.  Pretty soon we're going to get to the point where sick people themselves are downcast in the eyes of the Lord and need to be "let go" so that the rest of us don't have our freedoms curtailed.  America was sooooo much better before one of them became President.  Now look at us!

Either that or Santorum's going to slip and use the n-word.  I prefer the latter, at least it would be Santorum actually saying what's on his tiny, warped little mind.

Nice jobs speech, by the way.  Asshole.

Ancient Relics Stolen

As a writer and lover of history, I am always looking for ways to tie history and real events together.  Writers have a bag of tricks for when they get stuck, usually bringing in religion for an touch of the mystical, stolen relics that can be combined for some greater purpose, and a conspiracy that brings them all in.  You don't have to look any further than The DaVinci Code for an example.

It was kind of strange to read about some of the recent thefts from churches all around.  Dublin's Christ Church Cathedral has held the heart of St. Laurence O'Toole, the patron saint of Ireland.  Saturday it was noticed missing, though nobody can give a good estimate of when it was taken.

Pieces of the cross that Jesus was crucified on were stolen, found and returned, with no arrests.  Other relics have been taken, and not all are recovered.

Is this coincidence?  It seems strange that all of a sudden these items are targeted.  In a time when money is tight, sentimental value would seem uncertain.  Unless, of course, someone very wealthy was bankrolling the movement towards some ultimate goal.  The fiction writer in me is hooked, I confess.

A Special Place In Hell

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) -- A 3-year-old girl from America's northernmost community died and her younger sister suffered hypothermia after their mother and the mother's boyfriend left them in a locked bedroom with a window open to a temperature of minus 30 degrees to air out the room because the girls wet their beds, authorities said.

The mother, 28-year-old elementary teacher Esther G. Edwards-Gust, was apparently on the lam Saturday, a day after she and 29-year-old Richard Tilden Jr. were indicted in the child's death. Tilden was in custody.

The couple shared a home with Edwards-Gust's 1- and 3-year-old daughters in the Inupiat Eskimo community of Barrow.

Police say the two girls last month were trapped overnight in their bedroom with a window open to temperatures that dropped to 30 degrees below zero. Both children were diagnosed with extreme hypothermia and flown to an Anchorage hospital, where the 3-year-old died.

It's hard to feel sorry for either of the parents, who should never be allowed to be near a child again.  The complete lack of understanding for what is normal for children that age is scary, but nobody could possibly explain how leaving children exposed to below-zero temperatures sounded like a good idea at the time.  No amount of alcohol can account for that.

Excuse me, I'm going to go hug my nieces and nephews now, and be glad they were born to our family instead of people like this.

Still think we should force everyone to risk pregnancy?

Super Bomber Man Ultra

US Attorney General Eric Holder explained in detail Monday the legal and Constitutional rationale behind the targeting killing of Anwar al-Awlaki.  Adam Serwer:

Speaking to students and faculty at Northwestern University law school, Attorney General Eric Holder laid out in greater detail than ever before the legal theory behind the administration's belief that it can kill American citizens suspected of terrorism without charge or trial. In the 5,000-word speech, the nation's top law enforcement official directly confronted critics who allege that the targeted killing of American citizens violates the Constitution.

"'Due process' and 'judicial process' are not one and the same, particularly when it comes to national security." Holder said. "The Constitution guarantees due process, not judicial process."

Who decides when an American citizen has had enough due process and the Hellfire missile fairy pays them a visit? Presumably the group of top national security officials—that, according to Defense Secretary Leon Panetta, decides who is targetable and forwards its findings to the president, who gives final approval.

There won't be any drone strikes in Denver any time soon. But you might want to be careful when traveling abroad, because Holder made it clear that there are no geographical limits in the fight against Al Qaeda. "Neither Congress nor our federal courts has limited the geographic scope of our ability to use force to the current conflict in Afghanistan," Holder said. "We are at war with a stateless enemy, prone to shifting operations from country to country."

Holder is basing this authority on the AUMF for Afghanistan from Congress in 2001, which authorized appropriate and necessary force to bring the perpetrators of 9/11 to justice.  But it was also Congress who said that the President could not close Gitmo, and that the President had to defer to military tribunals for captured suspects as well.  I'm not happy with Holder's interpretation, but President Obama is not alone in the blame for the policy, either.

And the fact of the matter is 5 out of six Americans back the Obama administration's use of drones in Afghanistan against terrorists.  That drops to 4 out of six when the target is a US citizen abroad who may be a terror suspect, still an overwhelming majority.   Considering how tired Americans are of ground troops, armed drones seem to be a much more preferable way to deal with terrorists, frankly.

So when 3 out of 3 branches of the federal government approve of this, it's going to happen.

Pinhead Wizards

Well, if Tom Jensen's poll numbers are to be believed (and PPP has been pretty much spot on in the past with a good track record) then Stupor Tuesday it could be a long, long day for the forces of Romnevibility(tm).

The news is good for Mitt Romney and Newt Gingrich and bad for Rick Santorum in PPP's final polls of the three biggest Super Tuesday states.
In Ohio Romney leads with 37% to 36% for Santorum, 15% for Gingrich, and 11% for Ron Paul.
In Tennessee Santorum leads with 34% to 29% for Romney, 27% for Gingrich, and 8% for Paul.
In Georgia Gingrich leads with 47% to 24% for Romney, 19% for Santorum, and 8% for Paul.
A week ago Santorum had a huge lead in Tennessee, a decent sized one in Ohio, and seemed like he had a good chance for second in Georgia. Now he's barely holding on in Tennessee, ever so slightly behind in Ohio, and seems doomed for third in Georgia.
Romney's fortunes have swung the other direction. What was looking like a runner up finish in Ohio is looking more like a win with each passing day. He has an outside chance at pulling off an upset win in Tennessee. And it looks like he'll finish a solid second in Georgia.
The news for Gingrich is good too. It's been expected he would win Georgia, but it looks now like he could even hit the 50% mark. And he's pulled within striking distance of Santorum and Romney in Tennessee.

We're at a tipping point. A Gingrich win in Georgia with him getting over 50% keeps him in the game, as does a Santorum win in Tennessee (especially if Romney slips into 3rd there.)  Should Slick Rick pull off a win in Ohio to boot, all balls will be locked for multiball and the chaos will truly begin, as Tuesday will only make the national GOP picture even more messy.

If on the other hand Romney can win Ohio and surprise in the Volunteer State, Romnevitability(tm) will rise.  It could go either way at this point.  Me, I'm rooting for multiball, then for the table to break and the balls to go flying everywhere.  Maybe knock over a few bystanders, roll out into the street, cause hipsters to ironically fall.  Yeah, the kind of multiball that makes the local news and forces some local reporter to schlep out to where they still have pinball machines and pizza by the slice with "cheese" and do a report with a straight face with the chyron underneath reading "BIZARRE PINBALL ACCIDENT DOWNTOWN INJURES FOUR.".  I'm all for that.  Let's go with that.  Yeah.

Also, what Doug said.


Related Posts with Thumbnails