31 December 2008

Virginity Pledgers Can't Keep It in Their Pants

Surprisingly, Young People Want To Do It

A recent study concerning the ineffectiveness of "virginity pledges" is a slap in the face to the religious folks who say that being abstinent is the only way to go and masturbating will cause hair on your palms. Apparently, even though pledgers have that awkwardly short "first time" later on in life, they are just as likely to get knocked up out of wedlock and get STDs as their culturally conservative counterparts. This study conveniently coincides with the Granny Palin story. From CNN:
In the analysis, Rosenbaum compared 289 young adults who took virginity pledges in their teens with 645 young people who did not take such a pledge. The researcher was careful to only compare teens who had similar views on religion, birth control and sex in general, regardless of whether or not they took a pledge.

Five years after the initial survey the study subjects were aged 20 to 23. Eighty-two percent of pledge takers denied (or forgot) they had ever taken such a vow. Overall pledge takers were no different from non-pledge takers in terms of their premarital sex, anal and oral sexual practices, and their probability of having a sexually transmitted disease.

Both groups lost their virginity at an average age of 21, had about three lifetime partners, and had similar rates of STDs. "And the majority were having premarital sex, over 50 percent," says Rosenbaum. Overall, roughly 75 percent of pledgers and non-pledgers were sexually active, and about one in five was married.
I can't knock anyone for wanting to stay "pure". With all the weird diseases out there it's respectable and even the subject of some damn fine movies. But just saying that you're taking a "pledge" because your parents or your minister told you so might not be the best method. Young people who desire to rock the V credentials should go with time-tested birth control techniques like being ugly, a nerd, and/or a blogger.

Nerds? NERDS!

Came across this little gem on the LiveLeak feed. I believe it's some sort of live-action Dungeons and Dragons out in the woods with grown-up geeks. TSO will be able to confirm the validity.

From now on, whenever you go out on the town, you have to shout "lightning bolt!" to get slow-moving gawkers out of the way.

30 December 2008

The Terl Awards: Worst of the Worst in 2008

God, what a shitass year it has been for our country. Economic meltdown, a depressing election cycle, and the rise of the boy band Jonas Brothers signifying that our taste in music is continuing its sad decline. How fitting that our President Elect, whom everyone seems to love for reasons unbenownst to myself, throw up a nonchalant Shaka while everyone else got a pink slip for Christmas and a massive diplomatic crisis is underway in the Middle East. Under normal circumstances, you'd think it couldn't get much worse, but just wait what 2009 has in store.

To commemorate our nation's annual malaise, I present you with the Terl awards. You are probably asking who or what the fuck is "Terl". He's John Travolta's character from the colossal dud of a movie Battlefield Earth, pictured below center with cod piece.
As far as movies go, Battlefield Earth (with an abominable 3% on the tomatometer) is like Howard the Duck times Ishtar to the Gigli'th degree. It really represents everything crappy about America. A bumbling pack of lummoxes with a pushy, agenda-driven movie that has way too big a budget and no sense of humor. In that spirit, here's the worst of the worst in 2008.

Worst Occupation in America - Wall Street Exec/Politician: They seem to be one in the same these days. It was bad enough that these greedy boobs had to ruin the world economy by pushing a endless stream of bunk loans that assumed home prices were going to go up forever. But then they had to rip off the American taxpayer to continue their failed business model, and in typical politico fashion, the bailout bill was loaded up with enough pork to feed a Hawaiian army. The bailout's defenders in the media seem to be suspiciously involved with the major banks, and the conventional wisdom is that not wanting to bail out all these yahoos makes you a "neo-Hooverite". WTF. I'd rather live in a trailer in Sheboygan, Wisconsin because of a collapsed real estate market than be some serf to the power class that we all have become.

Worst Campaign - McCain/Palin: I'm a Navy officer guy like McCain, and me and him both supported Teh Surge! , so you would assume I'd vote for him come election day. But the guy just got really creepy as the campaign went on. There were gaffes galore, including justification for staying 100 years in Iraq by saying it would be similar to Germany/Japan (uh, no), and then he had to pull off dumb stunts like flying into DC to "save the economy". Then he picked Palin. Great, just what America needed, another super-religious governor that knew nothing about foreign policy to prove to the world that we are a nation of embarrassing imbeciles.

Worst Movie - The Day the Earth Stood Still: Right when a nasty cold front swept the nation leaving everyone from Vegas to Maine freezing their keesters off, Hollyweird had to release a pushy movie on the evils of mankind's ways that only an alien Keanu could redeem. If only global warming was working in that ticket line, I damn near got frostbite.

Worst Blog - The Huffington Post: If you ever wondered what self-righteous, limousine-liberal celebrities have to say about "the little people", look no further than The Huffington Post. See Roseanne preach anti-semitism with poor grammar, see people who don't know shit about the military advocate major changes in our Department of Defense, and see shameless aggregating to boost hit counts in action. LA socialite-cum-Obama worshiper Arianna Huffington also came out with a book this year in which blogs are hailed as the most important place to get information since "Tom Paine". If the Huffington Post is the "new media", we'd probably be better off using carrier pigeons.

Worst Moran - Naomi Wolf: In order to shill copies of her lame book, Naomi Wolf tried to indicate on NPR that 3ID, under the command of NORTHCOM, was going to institute an "October Surprise" so Bush could stay in power through martial law. This was long after Jason Sigger debunked this ridiculous claim, but I think some whackos on the left still wanted to believe it was going to happen to confirm their delusional conspiracy theories. Unless I was executed in the civil unrest, and the last two months have actually been a strange Pincher Martin-like hallucination in purgatory, I don't think the "surprise" happened. She'd be better off trying to push her other wildly popular ideas, like why wearing a hidjab/headscarf is actually "quite intimate" and how pornography is destroying society.

Worst Scandal - Hot Rod Blagojevich: You know, on Christmas Day in 1989, Romania's notorious communist couple (the Ceausescus) were executed on public television for crimes against humanity. No fuss, no muss. Have we somehow regressed in how we as a world deal with tyrants? I'm not saying an eternal dirtnap for Rod's hair is in order, but this asshole is sure making a mockery of democracy with some pretty obvious evidence against him.

Worst Internet Phenomenon - LOLcatz: The FAIL meme was funny. Stuff White People Like was funny before the guy totally sold out. LOLcatz should be relegated to the background of a 12 year-old's MySpace page...and I'm a cat guy! Maybe I'm just not sophisticated enough for this kind of humor. Why the fuck would a cat be on a phone anyways?

Worst Prediction - Sadr and Iran will Control Iraq: Back in March when Prime Minister Maliki decided to take down the Mahdi Army, there was predictably a period of conflict in Sadr City and Basra where the thugs were entrenched. As the coalition and the Iraqi Army took the fight to the streets, the anti-war zealots took the opporutunity to slam Bush with the rhetoric, saying that embassy personnel were going to have to be helicoptered off Saigon-style. That was in March, and now you don't hear much from Sadr anymore and most of the Mahdi Army dudes are dead, detained, or in exile...of course you don't hear much about Iraq at all from the pundit class or the media these days. Count that as a blessing. This event conveniently coincided with the 4000 KIA in Iraq, which some on the left (see the worst blog above) used as an opportunity to cash in on the political Bush-bash punditry at the expense of dead soldiers. Anything goes in an election season, I guess. But don't you dare question their patriotism or their "support of the troops". Maybe if they took off their dogmatic anti-war blinders, they could have figured out what was really going on.

Worst Under-reported Story in the Media - Mexico Drug Cartel Wars: America has long had cultural ties with our neighbor to the south (ever been to L.A.?), but our media has been completely ignoring the disturbing rise in violence due to drug cartel violence. Death tolls that dwarf Afghanistan violence continue to rack up, grenade attacks occur in the streets, but these stories get sent to the back pages of the paper somewhere near the Family Circus cartoon and the ambulance-chaser ads. There certainly isn't any serious discussion of revamping our drug policy to prevent the slaughter. The media often complains that reporting in a conflict zone is expensive and takes too much time. C'mon guys, I used to drive down to Tijuana on a Saturday for cheap drinks while unsuccessfully seeking out the "El Burro" show. You don't even have to stop when you drive south across the border...seriously you just have to slow down as the Mexican border police wave you through! Would it be that difficult to get a "crack journalist" with a notepad and few pesos down there?

Worst Viral YouTube Video - Yes We Can by Will.i.am: This video is pretty much the embodiment of every annoying, self-righteous attitude about Obama supporters. There is no reason to believe that any politician in today's system is anything but a power-hungry crook who would sell out their own grandmother for a few votes from whatever the special interest dishing out the most money was that day. But, oh no, not my Obama, he's different! Uh, change or something. If this guy is anything short of the second coming of Jesus Christ bearing free iPods and Whole Foods gift certificates, there is going to be some serious buyer's remorse in this country.

In conclusion, everything is pretty fucked. Buy canned foods and dig a fallout shelter in your backyard.

Gun Buy-Back Program Goes Over Like a Lead Balloon in Denver

With the imminent collapse of society, firearms have been selling faster than Hannah Montana twat shots. So a program to buy people's guns back for a lousy 50 bucks predictably went down in flames. From the Denver Post (h/t Moonbattery):

Organizers of a supposed gun buy-back had dozens of people lining up to turn in their weapons, although only 15 were collected today for the Denver Police Department to destroy and melt down.

Held at New Covenant Christian Church in Denver to raise awareness about gun violence, the gun buy-back turned into a gun give-back event when the program could not afford to pay $50 as initially advertised.

The Rev. Reginald Holmes, a pastor at the church, said about 40 people with a total of 120 guns showed up but were turned off to the idea of just donating their guns.

"It's a tough economy, people want an incentive," Holmes said.

Denver Million Family March Organization leader Alvertis Simmons said a lack of response and support from the community has been an "appalling silence."
Sorry Ms. Simmons, but the only "appalling silence" would be a jam on your AR-15 when zombies were breaking down the door. Firearms and what you learned from the Road Warrior might be the only thing saving your ass when civil society falls apart. Just ask a Korean businessman in Los Angeles who was around in 1992.

This is an example of a touchy-feely social engineering program designed to sound good but is highly impractical, which Colorado has a history of. During the DNC this year, they had a carbon-offset program for attendees which raised a whopping $18.34 for a busted wind turbine. I see the Good Idea fairy is not just limited to staff officers in the military.

What If They Gave a War and No Reporters Came?

The above picture of lovely Iraqi ladies is a shot from the Baghdad beauty pageant a few weeks back depicted in WaPo's Unseen Iraq, and unless you count the shoe-throwing guy, it was probably the most in-depth reporting from Mesopotamia by an American outlet in weeks. That's probably why it comes as no surprise that the American networks are pulling the plug in Iraq. From Newsbusters:

So right on cue, Monday's New York Times reports that ABC, CBS and NBC have all pulled their full time reporters from Iraq. According to correspondent Brian Stelter, the lack of violence means the networks are less interested in the Iraq story: "Representatives for the networks emphasized that they would continue to cover the war and said the staff adjustments reflected the evolution of the conflict in Iraq from a story primarily about violence to one about reconstruction and politics."
Indeed, Iraqi civilian deaths plummeted to 5,714 for all of 2008 and U.S. deaths were down to just over 300. While that is still painfully high, the annual murder rate in America is at about 16,000 and will inevitably rise as the economy collapses around us. While the per capita rate is lower since the U.S. is about 10x as populous as Iraq, it gives you something to think about. It also gives a lot of credence to preconceptions about the media that "If it Bleeds, It leads!"

But aren't we at war as a nation, and what about all those "good news" stories the media never prints? Well, I think the "good news" stories were partly a method by which fervent Bush supporters could buttress their arguments against those "defeatist Democrats". Likewise, stubborn anti-war advocates eschewed all critical analysis and trumpeted everything that jackass Muqtada al-Sadr said as the imminent collapse of Bush regime. Except for some exceptionally dedicated reporters who spent a lot of time in Iraq, I don't think we ever really got much news that went beyond just the usual focus on domestic politics (from the American outlets at least). Talking heads on the big networks just shilling for their team with the Iraq talking points du jour doesn't really lend itself to extensive analysis and in-depth reporting. What a shame.

On the bright side, milblogs have provided an interesting perspective on what's happening with our soldiers over there, but they still don't have the saturation power of a dedicated bureau. Oh well, at least we can get plenty of coverage of mega-hunk Obama throwing up the shaka in Hawaii!

29 December 2008

Will There Be Mass Protests Against The Murder of 14 Afghan School Children?

e.g., the Indian Embassy bombings in Kabul did little to outrage the Middle East

The Israelis are striking Gaza for a second day, and protesters from across the Arab world are lining up with a vengeance. From Tehran to London, the usual ruckus of anti-Zionist rhetoric can be heard loud and clear. Like the fat woman at a club, this blog steers clear of taking an opinion on the Israeli/Palestinian issue, since a small strip of land with few resources in which three major religions lay claim might prove troublesome for discussion. But the Middle Eastern outrage at Israel, has failed to materialize as terrorists murder their own fellow Muslims (with the exception of Iraqis).

Recently, 14 schoolchildren were murdered by a suicide bomber in Khost, Afghanistan. The grisly video of the attack can be viewed here. Are there going to be imams in Saudi Arabia and protesters in Cairo gathering to condemn this atrocity? Highly doubtful. IraqPundit has some sharp insight on why this is the norm in a post entitled "Right Civilians, Wrong Civilians":
Arabs are ready to protest when the U.S. does something wrong (Abu Ghraib, Guantanamo). Arabs are ready to protest when civlians get killed by the U.S. or Israel. But rarely if ever do they protest when some hate-filled extremists kill civilians. I'm talking about Iraqi civilians. I don't recall huge demonstrations against the suicide bombers and other extremists in Iraq responsible for the murder of most civilians.

The Arab Street accepts the extremists as noble fighters. They see them as decent fellows who had no choice but to turn violent in the face of injustice. And because they are noble fighters, people forgive them when they kill civilians. On Friday a Hamas rocket killed two Palestinians kids. Poor children didn't know they were the wrong kind of civilians.

That's the injured Palestinians' problem. They're the wrong kind of civilians. This Arabic report says Hamas admits that they are preventing injured from going to Egypt for treatment. The principled Hamas leaders say it's not fair of Egypt to open Rafah crossing just for the injured, they should open it for fighters and smugglers as well. Too bad for the injured, they must be sacrificed for the cause.

The frustrated Arab Street is angry that their voices are ignored. I agree they have much to protest about when it comes to their nasty regimes. People have every right to be angry about Abu Ghraib, etc. But perhaps if the Street objected to the killings of all civilians, more people would listen.
The fact that much of the world's Islamic community forgoes condemning terrorism and accepts them as "freedom fighters" represents, in some ways, a strategic communications failure on America's part. When people in the Middle East still overwhelmingly believe that the U.S. or Israel was behind 9/11, it is obvious that we are not succeeding in enabling moderate messengers in troubled regions rife with terrorist activity. This will be a serious diplomatic challenge for the incoming Obama administration, and I hope he doesn't shrug off this key component of our current efforts to curb terrorism.

Ford's Inferno: Communist Propaganda From the 50s

Another item of interest located in my mother's basement (no, I don't live there!), that I felt was worth sharing. My Great-Grandmother had some McCarthy-era leaflet from 1957 designed to warn Michiganders about the insipid communist threat, and it was an actual excerpt from a Soviet textbook discussing America. It talked about how the auto plants in Michigan were soul-sucking capitalist machines hell-bent on the destruction of the American proletariat. Michael Moore, eat your heart out, because this propaganda is way more professional. Click to enlarge:

Some money quotes include:

"America is supposed to be the land of individualism. But Fordism is the thing that capitalists have established in many parts of the country, and want to make universal. They want a land of robots, who will work themselves out by the time they are forty and then go off somewhere and die."
"The Soviet workers get vacations of a month with full pay; they have no fear of unemployment or accident"
"Here you pass through an inferno of fear. You can see it in the eyes of these men. They know that any minute they may find themselves in the streets without any work."
The quality of life for the American autoworker was far better than any Soviet, as people from the impoverished South and overseas (like my ancestors) flocked to Detroit to earn a decent wage in the auto factories. It's odd how leftist propaganda during the cold war was incredibly analogous to official Soviet propaganda. Just saying.

Too Much Egg Nog for Santa

If the psycho Santa in California was reminiscent of the Christmas classic Silent Night Deadly Night, then this inebriated Santa is channeling Billy Bob Thornton. Check out Santa getting hassled by the police for being totally blitzed:

Santa is going to need a lawyer and a PR spokesman next year after all this bad publicity.

Great Balls of Fire

Hey Ladies! Look at me!

A gentleman from Sweden attempted to impress his special ladyfriend by lighting his arm on fire with gasoline. Obviously, the scent of charred flesh and subsequent trip in the meat wagon did little for the romance. From The Local (h/t Nutty News):
The woman told police in Västervik in south eastern Sweden that her boyfriend poured gasoline over his arm and set the fuel on fire. “It obviously didn’t go well. He burned his arm and other parts of his body and was in a state of shock,” said Kalmar police spokesperson Reine Johansson to the TT news agency. “Don’t ask me what the point of the trick was supposed to be.” The 33-year-old man was taken via ambulance to the hospital in Västervik. According to police he will likely need specialized care at the burn clinic of Linköping University Hospital.
Note to hospitalized guy, the flaming arm gag is unnecessary, as simply putting on boardshorts and acting like a jackass will get the attention of all the babes.

27 December 2008

Tom Cruise Takes on The Man For the Holidays

Railing against unjust authority is a value steeply rooted in our traditions. From the hated British during our Revolution to that douchebag bossman who yelled at you for clocking out five minutes early, people will always cast a leery eye towards "the man" in charge. This year has certainly seen a prevalence of figures in power rip off the American public for billions, and the unpopularity of "the man" is reaching epic proportions. The movie Valkyrie capitalizes on that animosity by bringing us a great WWII thriller about the assassination of the worst "the man" of all, Adolf Hitler.

It is heavily sentimental in the fact that Tom Cruise's character is compelled by duty and honor of a soldier to end Hitler's tyrannical regime by assassination. There are highlights of many embittered members of the German officer corps towards the end of the war, which is a different tone than the assumption that anyone affiliated with the Nazis was evil (Schindler's List had a similar theme). Since the movie is based on a true story, the attempted coup was unsuccessful. But, it emphasizes, as Eric notes, the right to overthrow the government if it is unjust, which is certainly applicable today.

26 December 2008

Last Week of 2008

New Year's, the greatest holiday of all, is upon us. That means more boozing and more reminiscing on what a lousy year 2008 has been. Later this week we'll be rolling out the Terl awards to celebrate the worst of the worst in '08. In the meantime, don't forget to partaayy.

Creepy Nixon-Era Buttons Unearthed in Mother's Basement

My folks are kind enough to let me smoke in the basement, so rummaging through their stuff, I found these Nixon campaign buttons. My mother wasn't old enough to vote in '72, but she may have had some Alex P. Keatoneque fascination with the guy in high school. I have no idea what to make of the "Senior Power" button...some questions are best left unasked.

25 December 2008

I Toldja Santa Was Evil!

And not just in a drunken stupor, Bad Santa-kinda way. From the City of Angels [CNN]:

At least three people were found dead after a man dressed as Santa Claus started shooting at a Christmas Eve party in suburban Los Angeles, police said Thursday.

An 8-year-old girl and a woman in her 20s were hospitalized with gunshot wounds that authorities do not consider life-threatening.

Crews took a third person to a hospital with an injury that wasn't life-threatening and wasn't caused by gunfire, said police in Covina, a city about 20 miles east of downtown Los Angeles.

The shooting started around 11:30 p.m. Wednesday.

When police arrived at the two-story house, they discovered a fire that caused "significant damage." Authorities found three people dead inside but said they do not know how the three died. Their identities had not been released Thursday morning.
That's messed up.

Joe to the World!

From the blog roundup of those deployed in support of operations, I forgot to include Ramblings from a Painter, who works for the State Department at the new fantabulous embassy (he's pictured above). The post got a link from one of the bigger bloggers, Spencer Ackerman, so hopefully these folks will get the recognition they deserve. Thanks Spencer. Also, CJ has the message to the troops from the President Elect if you are interested.

For Christmas Santa left me Nikki Sixx's Heroin Diaries...it's pretty good! I've always wondered how the four guys from Motley Crue stayed alive all these years, and reading Nikki Sixx's diary from 1987 makes the paradox even more baffling. I always get a gag gift for someone, usually a Chuck Norris movie or something, and this year the lucky recipient was my pops, who received the following:

Merry freaking Christmas.

Help! Under Attack By Fatso in Red Suit

Evil Robot Santa Takes No Prisoners

According to NORAD, some overweight glutton named Santa Claus is careening towards North America under the guise of bringing "gifts" to children who've been good. We never determined if Santa was a communist in disguise or a plutocrat seeking to proliferate over-consumption, but the end is definitely nigh. Before I succumb to my wounds, I'd like to wish a happy holidays to all the people serving time overseas so that I can sit on my duff blogging half-assedly, drinking cheap beer, and awaiting the inevitable yuletide violence. Check them out:

Bad Dogs and Such
Fobbits Need Ice Cream Too (just got back!)
Navy Gal (just got back too!)
Peace and War Times
Pink's War
S4 at War
Something on the Staff
War on Big Tobacco

Afghanistan Shrugged
Embrace the Suck
The Left Captain

I tried to send one of those video greetings to the troops at Blackfive, but I'm not sure if they're going to make a Xmas video like they did last year. Not that my mug is what anyone would want to see on Christmas, but I kept it short and my pants were on the whole time.

The Vietnamization of Afghanistan

For some damn reason Jane Fonda, the traitorous swine, was all up in my gmail account, yapping about how great Code Pink was an anti-war organization:

Dear LT,
As an actor, I know the power of the screen. As an activist, I also know the power of taking a message off the screen and onto the streets. That's why I love CODEPINK--it not only utilizes the best of the visual media with its vibrant pink presence; the women of CODEPINK are also out in the world...
Apparently old hippies never die, they just get senile and spread their messages through the internet rather than half-baked drum sessions. But unlike Vietnam, the beginning of operations in Afghanistan were hardly controversial in 2001. The Taliban, a despicable regime, was harboring terrorists that perpetrated one of the greatest atrocities in American history. The authorization for the use of military force did not take long to pass in DC. But as Iraq winds down, and people look for ways to divert money from defense for the sake of keeping people on the public dole, expect opposition to Afghanistan to begin ramping up.

In some cases, leaders of large progressive policy groups don't even bother trying to rationalize why the war must have an end...not even a catchy tune that you can slap on a protest sign. They just say we need to give money to irresponsible citizens who splurged on McMansions. From Huffington Post:
With housing prices continuing to plummet, not helping them means the financial system is being buttressed on top of a time bomb...But perhaps we'd be wiser to leave bin Laden in his cave, abandon the entire wrong-headed misnomer of a "war on terror," and give up attempting to build a new democracy in a country on the other side of the world. Make aggressive global policing, intelligence sharing, and a crackdown on financial flows the core of our reaction to bin Laden, and focus our resources and attention on the crisis here at home, which remains truly terrifying to anyone who looks at it closely.
The mission in Afghanistan does not provide a direct paycheck into people's pocket, so as the public gets more desperate to go back to their excessive living of SUVs, reality TV, and subprime mortgages, they are going to be easily swayed by politicians making promises. Maybe the next administration will do the right thing and look for new tactics and diplomacy to put the mission back on track, but the American people are going to be bitching every step of the way during these hard times. The college protesters, progressive bloggers, and other layabouts who speak the loudest for the anti-war movement will be making a lot more sense to more and more Americans.

24 December 2008

Instant Rimshot To Provide Hours of Zany Antics

Sorry that it's a bit of a snoozer in the news cycle this holiday season, but A-ro digs up quite possibly the most versatile and entertaining website to come along since Retrojunk. Behold! It's instantrimshot.com, which A-ro lauds:

If you need quick access to an ironicly-placed rimshot sound to mock your friends, or a genuinely-placed rimshot to put your great joke over the top, you've come to the right place.
For all those bad jokes you are certain to here while you celebrate jeebus with the in-laws, this classic sound will add to the awkward hilarity. Now, if only someone made a website dedicated to the foghorn sound for whenever someone stinky walked in the room.

That's My Commander in Chief!

President Bush has been making the rounds on the alphabet networks to drum up support for his legacy of having presided over these tumultuous past 8 years. The following quote to Charles Gibson reminded us all of what kind of executive branch we've been blessed with. From Politico:

For a man on a bon voyage tour, Bush has tried to sound unconcerned about how history will judge him.

I’ll be frank with you. I don’t spend a lot of time really worrying about short-term history,” he told Gibson. “I guess I don’t worry about long-term history, either, since I’m not going to be around to read it.
For a guy with record low approval ratings both here and abroad, you'd think he'd totally be banking on future historians treating him kindly. Rather, this is allegorical for a presidency unable to comprehend long-term consequences of its decisions and threw practical policy out the window for the purpose of gratifying a small group of Americans. Some events that will forever mar the "Bush legacy":

Faux Patriotism Post-9/11: A surge of nationalistic pride engulfed America following the horrendous events of 9/11 (remember "United We Stand"). A nation's survival is entirely dependent on the will of its citizenry, and sacrifices are necessary in a time of war to ensure that the country is successful in its endeavors. But instead of the iconic Rosie the Riveter, we got Paris the Ditsy Shopaholic, as Bush encouraged the nation to be patriotic by...shopping? The burden of conflict was shifted entirely to a small group of law enforcement officials, intelligence experts, and, of course, the military. Use of policies like IRR callups and the Stop-Loss program ensured a "back-door draft" so that responsibility fell on the shoulders of a small percentage of the voting bloc. The president handed out free government goodies like prescription drugs in an attempt to keep the public from voicing their dissent, while they floundered with no strategic vision for the modern conflicts.

The Gitmo Fiasco: If you would've told me 7 years ago that people would be up in arms about perceived mistreatment of a terrorist murderer like Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, I'd would've said to get your head examined. But, the lack of disclosure to the public surrounding the detention facility has caused serious diplomatic problems worldwide as America's enemies routinely point to it as a sign that we are barbarians. Abstract American ideas of freedom, equality, and human rights are crucial in convincing moderates in troubled regions that radical Islam is the path to self-destruction, and Gitmo has been a terrible black eye on our strategic messaging from the beginning.

Iraq (the Mission Accomplished years): I give credit to Bush for implementing the Surge of combat forces in 2007, when it was politically toxic to do so. But, the bumbled post-invasion plans for reconstruction, the lack of adequate gear for our troops initially, and a dangerous hubris that assumed western-style democracy would take foot overnight were catastrophic in war planning. It also didn't help that the war precipitated based on bunk intelligence. Is the world a better place sans Saddam? I would say so. But, the resulting ethnic cleansing, regional instability, and appalling levels of poverty in Iraq could have been mitigated if the war was approached with more practicality and less cowboy swagger.

Hurricane Katrina: Despite the left's best efforts, the Katrina disaster can not be entirely blamed on Bush & Friends. But it was the federal government's inability to help out the victims which made America look more like some sort of third-world backwater rather than a world leader. It's a shame that it had to be such a monumental tragedy before people began to question the competence of our government, but it was a defining moment for the country.

Bailout Bonanza: You would assume that the Republican party would have been the ones to nix such a grotesque abuse of the public treasury. But the "ownership society" pushed by politicians of all stripes, which encouraged Americans to live well beyond their means and pursue a life of eternal debt, has crippled our once proud economy. Bush was the one who demanded the parasites in congress to get in on the great cash giveaway of 2008, which is great for banking elites with friends in Washington, and terrible for regular Americans who have to pay taxes and spend money that is being rapidly devalued as more funny money is dumped into the market. Now, all sorts of plutocrats are meandering their way to the public troff to look for a quick fix of federal cash. Ultimately, borrowing money from the Chinese to prop up unprofitable and ineffectively managed businesses will lead America on the path to irrelevance.

CJ from A Soldier's Perspective has a tribute to George Bush, which I believe is genuine, if you don't agree that Bush was lousy. But, don't forget that Bush's foibles also resulted in America voting for a no-experience demagogue to lead us for what will be a very tough next four years. I'm not looking forward to it. Merry Christmas.

23 December 2008

Haloscan Purged

Sorry, I had to kill the haloscan comments due to significant problems many readers were having. I apologize if your comments were deleted.

Brace Yourself For Anti-Military Rhetoric To Support Budget Cuts

U.S. Maritime Power Goes Ghetto

Despite the percentage of GDP being spent on the military at historic lows, and the use of "backdoor drafts" like IRR callups and the IA program to prevent young voters from being outraged at serving in "Bush's Wars", the NYT thinks we need some serious budget cuts in our Defense Department. This parlays nicely into the far-left's lame attempt at conspiracy-mongering by saying that the Pentagon brass are going to instigate some kind of coup when Obama takes charge. Here's what the Grey Lady had to say (h/t Jonn):
Trim the active-duty Navy and Air Force. The United States enjoys total dominance of the world’s seas and skies and will for many years to come. The Army and the Marines have proved too small for the demands of simultaneous ground wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. They are the forces most likely to be called on in future interventions against terrorist groups or to rescue failing states. Reducing the Navy by one carrier group and the Air Force by two air wings would save about $5 billion a year.
I agree that the Army and USMC needs to be increased, but that doesn't necessarily mean gutting the Navy and Air Force (which already had massive cutbacks during the Clinton years). Apparently, the NYT editorial board isn't buying into the deterrence value of the U.S. military. Perhaps they figure Obama's genuine awesomeness will prevent every nation in the world from being overly aggressive (which Russia disproved the day after he got elected). History has not been kind to nations that have a lousy and ill-funded military (think Poland 1939), but those lefty charities that went under due to the Madoff scandal aren't going to pay for themselves. I guess national defense is the first to go in an attempt for the progressive establishment's quest to buy votes by dishing out government entitlements. Makes you really question the priorities in this country.

Next up in the New York Times Editorial hit list will probably be law enforcement, interstates, or some other "unnecessary" government program. I'd like to see the editorial board take on programs rife with corruption and inefficiency that are bankrupting the country like Medicare, Social Security, or this bailout nonsense. But those programs get votes because it means free government money in people's pocket, and in this sorry state of our democracy, the American public only votes for what's in it for them. Maybe we deserve to get conquered and pushed into irrelevance.

A Government Cheese Kind of Christmas

Christmas in Michigan

Sorry for my AWOL status, as I've been hanging out with the fam in Michigan. I understand that due to the auto bailout there may be some animosity towards the Great Lakes state. So, you'll be glad to know that it is cold as fuck here with Antarctica-sized snow drifts, and I'm half-expecting some kind of yeti to come through the door looking for a human snack. And on that note, Subrookie sent an interesting article from some smart professor (ooo, Stanford) about "Global Cooling". From Seattle P-I:
"Global Warming is over, and Global Warming Theory has failed. There is no evidence that CO2 drives world temperatures or any consequent climate change," Imperial College London astrophysicist and long-range forecaster Piers Corbyn wrote British Members of Parliament on Oct. 28. "According to official data in every year since 1998, world temperatures have been colder than that year, yet CO2 has been rising rapidly." That evening, as the House of Commons debated legislation on so-called "global-warming," October snow fell in London for the first time since 1922.
I'm not really a global-warming denier, but when Al Gore's "Inconvenient Truth" is "Very Convenient" for government-subsidized special interest groups and extorting money from big business through carbon taxes, it can arouse suspicion. The politicization of global warming alarmism is nauseating, and the fact that the entire country is freezing its collective ass off just gives more reasons to get frustrated with global warming advocates who are high on rhetoric and low on science.

19 December 2008

Schlocky Christmas Videos

Since someone requested the classic supergroup Band Aid video, here it is:

Well no one requested it, but I needed an excuse to post this deliciously cheesy vid.

As Michigan Goes Down, So Does the Rest of the Country

Detroit Landscapes Coming Soon to a Town Near You

Things aren't looking so hot for my beloved home state. Unemployment is sky high at 9.6%, funds to get people back to work have dried up, and the Lions are having another stinker of a season. Since the auto industry and the well-being of Michiganders are inextricably linked (even at the spiritual level), Gov. Granholm (D-MI) is making the rounds in the media circuit to plea for help from the feds in the form of an auto bailout. From Politico:
States, in particular, cannot afford inaction at the federal level, as we are already being forced by tight budgets to make wrenching decisions: either cut the very services that people need most in tough times – health care, job training, new job creation and education – or ask citizens to pay more to provide those services when people need them. Either option would freeze any hope of an American economic recovery.
The Michigan state budget was teetering on bankruptcy just last year, and they had to enact some 11th-hour legislation to slap the citizenry with more service taxes on everything from psychic palm-reading to ski lifts. Obviously, Granholm has been a poor steward of fiscal responsibility if she is forced to ask the federal government for cash, and she is pushing "universal health care" to relieve the Big Three of the UAW pensions that are crippling them. But, just like expensive health benefits have caused the manufacturing industry to be uncompetitive, taking it to a federal level will make all of America uncompetitive in our downhill slide to irrelevance.

The funny money being cranked out in the bailout is causing the dollar to become as useless as toilet paper, and the federal deficit is projected to be over a Trillion dollars (that's like two Iraqs!). So as much gratitude as I have for the auto industry and the state of Michigan, I just can't stomach the rest of the country going down like that. And that's why I've been against the bailout bonanza.

Snowpocalypse 08!

Heads Up!

Most people think the Seattle area would be one of those wintery places where people play hockey and ice-fish in long johns since it's way the hell north, but snowfall is rare here (unless you're up in the mountains). Therefore, snow removal equipment is few and far between, and they hardly use any salt because it's bad for mother earth or some bullshit. That's why this mornings commute was a wretched affair as I counted about 6 abandoned cars in the ditch, 2 semi-trucks that couldn't make it up a hill, and only one crummy snow plow.

Well we're probably doing better than Vegas.

Why did Al Gore have to open his big, fat mouth about climate change at the U.N. last week? Assuming that mother nature is an angry broad out to torture us humans, the Gore Effect makes perfectly good sense and we should expect more of the same.

18 December 2008

Don't Bogart That Joint, Obama!

Puff Puff, Give!

Sir Smoke-a-Lot pic From the Obama College Years (h/t Gateway Pundit)

A Tasty Cake for an Unsavory Family

My mother always told me that "Stupid People Shouldn't Breed" and the Campbells of New Jersey, who named their kid "Adolf Hitler Campbell", sure make a good argument for that maternal wisdom. Now they are throwing a tantrum at Shop-Rite for not making a birthday cake for the little fascist rugrat. From The Guardian:

Heath Campbell, 35, and his wife, Deborah, 25, say they are upset at the decision made by their local ShopRite not to write "Happy Birthday Adolf Hitler" across the cake, and that people needed to move forward.

Campbell said he named his son after Adolf Hitler because "no one else in the world would have that name".

"They need to accept a name. A name's a name. The kid isn't going to grow up and do what [Hitler] did," he said.
Listen, ass, no business is required to offend 99.99% of their customer base by putting Nazi bullshit on a kids birthday cake. Also, their reference to Obama (quoted in The Boston Herald) and that this is an era of "change" was completely bizarre to say the least. To shut these rubes up, I tried to find a Hitler birthday cake, but was unsuccessful. Luckily, I found a Stalin cake with some fruity looking flowers:

Stalin and Hitler are pretty similar: both tyrants masquerading behind a cult of personality, both ethnically purged millions of people, both were propaganda masters. In these tough economic times, you're thankful for whatever you can get.

Holder in Hot Water

Attorney General nominee Eric Holder isn't just taking flak for the Elian Gonzalez fiasco (pictured above), apparently he was in cahoots with America's most hated governor back in 2004. Check it out.

Fairness Doctrine To Be Resurrected By Congresswoman From Palo Alto

Congresswoman Eshoo (D-Palo Alto) in Strange Victorian-era Garb

A few weeks back, I wrote about the Trojan Horse politics that the progressive majority was going to slip in amidst a sea of smiley faces and unicorns. One of the issues is the Fairness Doctrine, which is a way for politicians and bureaucrats to silence "uncooperative" conservative media outlets under the guise of limited airspace. George Will wrote an article on Dec. 7th about how reactionary liberals were going to try and push it through, and Yglesias and Wonkette called him a crazy old crank. Even Keith Olbermann said that no one on the left was trying to bring the Fairness Doctrine back (and he's a pretty big mouthpiece for the Left).

But Gateway Pundit dredges up a statement from Congresswoman Eshoo, who reigns over the latte-sipping yuppieville of Palo Alto, CA, and she even wants it applied to not just radio, but TV, cable, and satellite services as well. From SF Peninsula Press Club:
Eshoo said she would recommend the doctrine be applied not only to radio and TV broadcasts, but also to cable and satellite services.

“It should and will affect everyone,” she said.

She called the present system “unfair,” and said "there should be equal time for the spoken word."
People in power tend to abuse that authority, and there's no reason to think that the new majority of elected liberals in Obama's America won't try and drown out political speech they deem hostile. Stop being chumps and thinking that all the empty rhetoric about "tolerance" and "fairness" somehow applies to you.

17 December 2008

Real Life Monorail Breaks...Again!

Like the famed Simpsons episode, the Seattle monorail is a major P.O.S. Not only does the line only have two stops (which you can walk between in ~20 minutes), but riding this taxpayer funded abomination can get you stranded out in the cold. Seattle PI reports:

The red Seattle Center Monorail train was stuck on a track Tuesday, a day after about 15 people had to be rescued from the same train because of an emergency brake malfunction.
The link has a decent rundown of Monorail mishaps in recent years (there are many).

Seattle is the birthplace of grunge, the bad weather keeps the geezers away, and nerdy Microsoft billionaires spend billions on urban development to distract the masses. There is no reason that Seattle can't be the bestest city on the planet, but it badly needs a decent mass transit system to compete. There is light rail in the works, but it has been stalled due to NIMBY types, and the mayor seems more interested in denying citizens their second amendment rights.

Case Closed on Walsh Murder: Otis Toole Did It

Portrait of Psychotics: Henry Lee Lucas and Otis Toole

Florida police have announced that the case of the Adam Walsh murder (abducted and decapitated in 1981) has been solved. The boy's father, host of America's Most Wanted John Walsh, had suspected that it was Otis Toole all along. The Henry Lee Lucas/Otis Toole duo are some of the most notorious serial killers in American history, and they claimed to have killed hundreds of people in a cross-country spree that lasted from the late 70s into the early 80s. A little bit about the now-deceased gentlemen [Mayhem]. First, Henry:
As a teenager he enjoyed sex with his half-brother and dead animals. The future serial confessor said he first killed and raped a girl at the age of 15. When he was 17, Henry sliced open his eye while playing with a knife with his brother. His left his gashed orb unattended for days until it eventually withered and had to be removed by a doctor and replaced with prosthetic glass. Once he was beat so severely with a piece of wood that he lay in a semi-conscious state for three days before one of Violet's boyfriend decided to take him to a local hospital. All this explaining why Lucas spent most of his youth in and out of correctional institutes until January 11, 1960, when, in a drunken binge, Henry stuck a knife in his mother's back and proceeded to rape her dead corpse. Later, like on many other occasions, he recanted his act of inscestuous necrophilia.
As for Otis:
According to his confession Lucas claimed he and Toole would pick up most of his victims along the interstates: "Just about everyone I pick up, I kill 'em. That's the way it always turn out." Toole, who at the time was incarcerated in Florida on an arson murder, confirmed many of the claims, adding his own details. According to Ottis they picked many more hitchhikers when he wore a dress. Not surprisingly the confession became morbidly bizarre with episodes of necrophilia, dismemberment, and cannibalism on account of Toole's taste for human flesh.
It wasn't that long ago in America when serial killers like the Son of Sam and The Night Stalker were able to terrorize entire metropolitans, and child-murderers like John Wayne Gacy and Jeffrey Dahmer were able to get away with their bloodlust for years. The decline of these crimes is a testament to the improvement of America's law enforcement tactics and capabilities, because there is certainly no shortage of crazies out there.

Money Bomb Hits America!

Helicopter Ben Spotted Dumping Cash Over NYC

9 months ago, the Guardian predicted that Fed Chairman, Ben Bernanke, would lower interest rates to darn near zero and start cranking out more funny money to inject into the market. They were right, but I bet the amount they predicted wasn't in the freakin' Trillions range [NYT]:
Going further than analysts anticipated, the central bank cut its target for the overnight federal funds rate to a range of 0 to 0.25 percent, a record low, virtually bringing the United States to the zero-rate policies that Japan used for six years in its own fight against deflation. The rate had previously been 1 percent, and a cut of a half-point had been widely expected.
All of the new tools amount to printing money in vast new quantities, and the Fed has already started the process. Since September, the Fed’s balance sheet has ballooned from about $900 billion to more than $2 trillion as the central bank has created new money and lent it out through all its new programs. As soon as the Fed completes its plans to buy up mortgage-backed debt and consumer debt, the balance sheet will be up to about $3 trillion.
Is this going to work or are we going to have $500 Million notes like Zimbabwe to buy Pez dispenser refills? The press is putting some suit through the wringer for running a $50B Ponzi scheme, but nothing about a federal government that is ruining our economy faster than the fat guy taking a dump at a housewarming party. Maybe all the media companies are waiting for a slice of the bailout pie, so they're keeping their yaps shut.

Blag Still Gets to Name Obama's Senate Seat

Zombie Capone Said to Be In The Running For the Senate

Despite some very serious evidence against Hot Rod and his corrupt ways, the Illinois state legislature failed to strip his powers to name Obama's successor in the Senate. Sure, he might still get impeached before being hauled off to federal prison, but proceedings to boot the guy with the "fucking valuable thing" might take forever. From Bloomberg:
Blagojevich, 52, has resisted demands he resign since his Dec. 9 arrest by the FBI and accusations he tried to auction Obama’s seat for personal gain and intimidate the Chicago Tribune newspaper into firing editorial writers. Republicans said Democrats, who hold a 67-51 majority in the chamber, seek to avoid a loss of the seat to the GOP in a special election.

“Shame on you,” Representative William Black, deputy leader of Republicans in the House, shouted during a debate in the state capitol building in Springfield. “We had an opportunity to limit the power of this governor and you refused.”

Democrats in the House met yesterday and aired “differences of opinion on the best way to proceed” with a special election for Obama’s seat, Brown said. The differences could not be overcome so a vote on taking the decision away from Blagojevich was “deferred for now,” he said.
Is Illinois politics such a cesspool that people would cling to party loyalties rather than do the right thing amidst tremendous public and media pressure? Makes you wonder about Obama's new pick for Education Secretary. And you thought DC was a swamp.

16 December 2008

Tough Times in Afghanistan Call for...Rowdy Roddy Piper

The Talking Point du jour seems to be that we need to "negotiate" with the Taliban to supervise a "peaceful" exit. This goes beyond the stabilization operations of talking with the little "t" Taliban that Gen. McKiernan emphasizes, and has more to do with freeing up more revenue to fund domestic social programs (those votes aren't bought for cheap). But, Sarah Chayes, who runs a co-op out in Kandahar, notes that this would be a lousy idea. She's been there for 7 years, so I'm guessing she knows more about the situation than the rest of us. A snippet from yesterday's WaPo:

We and our friends in Kandahar are thunderstruck at recent suggestions that the solution to the hair-raising situation in this country must include a political settlement with "relevant parties" -- read, the Taliban. Negotiating with them wouldn't solve Afghanistan's problems; it would only exacerbate them. Ask any Afghan what's really needed, what would render the Taliban irrelevant, and they'll tell you: improving the behavior of the officials whom the United States and its allies ushered into power after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.
For some further insight into Afghanistan, I recommend Troy's blog and Old Blue's blog (both have combat experience in that forgotten part of the world). For everyone who wants to just give up and see Afghanistan become another failed state, I can only offer you this classic line from They Live:

Anyone got a master plan?

America Supports You Troop Charity Receives Shellacking From Pentagon Report

Danger Room warned us on Friday that a report criticizing lucrative contracts made between the government-funded America Supports You and the PR firm Susan Davis International would be nasty...and it sure was. Bloomberg has the details from the DoD Inspector General audit and it's damning stuff. Full text of the audit shows celebrities charging "convenience fees" for playing troop benefit concerts, inappropriate use of corporate branding for the non-profit, and the payment of 6-figure salaries to PR execs in Susan Davis International.

There's money to be made in selling off patriotism, and it looks like some greedy bastards in DC took the bait. Did you ever think that bureacrats in Washington would be so easily misguided by the almighty dollar? I am shocked!

Great, Code Pink To Honor Angry Shoe-Tosser Guy

Mahdi Army or Code Pink protest...what's the difference

It's getting more and more difficult to tell the difference between Sadrists, Ba'athists, and hippies in our own country. Code Pink is holding a pow-wow in L.A. where they encourage unemployed layabouts to bring their shoes in solidarity with the left's favorite new icon: that Saddam-apologist putz who throw his shoes at Bush. From their email distro:
Join us! Wednesday, December 17th, 5:00--6:30 PM, More Shoes for Bush!

Join us at the Federal Building at the southwest corner of Wilshire Blvd. and Veteran Ave., in solidarity with the Iraqi journalist who threw his shoes at George W. Bush at a Baghdad press conference on Sunday. Peace activists will gather outside the Federal Building with shoes representing Iraqis and U.S. soldiers who have died since the Bush Administration's illegal invasion of Iraq.

We aim to show support for Iraqi journalist Muntader al-Zaidi, who hurled his shoes at President Bush while he spoke at the conference during his "surprise" visit to discuss the war.
As you can see on Google maps, the Federal Building is one of the busiest intersections in Los Angeles, thereby putting it high in the running for busiest in the nation. Code Pink didn't have the decency to hold this display of idiocy on the weekend, so commuters will have to watch out for flying Birkenstocks as they exit off the 405. What a great country we live in.

15 December 2008

The Day The Earth Stood Completely Unimpressed with Hollywood

This GORT Thing Could Stop Humanity But Couldn't Refund my 9 bucks

Since our beginning, mankind has looked up to the heavens in the hopes of a more intelligent race passing on the secrets of the cosmos. But, watching alien Keanu bumble through his lines would probablyy result in sending these interstellar lifeforms back to where they came from. The movie's premise is that the earth must be saved from the humans, because if there's anything Hollywood doesn't like it's average schmoes (who ironically pay for their lifestyles). Keanu is the representative of these blood thirsty aliens hell-bent on our extinction, and he plunks his oversized, spherical shaped blob of attitude right onto our beloved Central Park in NYC. The "warmongering" humans arrive with a show of force to ask this yahoo from outer space a few questions, and all of a sudden we're the assholes! In an obvious slam against techniques used by the Bush Administration, the acting Prez (Kathy Bates) wants to sequester alien Keanu for "further interrogation". Obviously the message here is that a cabal of Lynndie England, Halliburton, and Sarah Palin's hunting buddies are solely responsible for the complete downfall of the human race. Keanu then trots around with Jennifer Connelly for awhile, in which she explains that "we can change", which is supposed to be plug for Obama (uh, I guess). Then, Keanu uses his throwback robot to 50s schlock, GORT, to make it so all electronic devices on earth collapse, so humans can redeem themselves in an orgy of PETA fundraisers and sailing off into the sunset on Al Gore's carbon-neutral boat. The End.

If Hollywood is trying to push Global Warming awareness, in what Kurt Loder remarks as "An intergalactic Al Gore, great", they probably should have picked a different month than when America usually gets ravaged by ice storms. The concept of eradicating all technology so we can "start over" doesn't take into account the inevitable cannibalism, war and famine that usually accompanies such a sudden loss of resources. Perhaps they'll leave that for the sequel!

Hollywood has tackled social issues with the apocalypse-themed movie in the past, and they have certainly withstood the test of time. Classics like They Live showed the devastation of Reganomics, Dawn of the Dead highlighted the stupidity of society due to obsessive consumerism, and Children of Men took on the rampant decay of civil society. But the Day the Earth Stood Still is so heavy on self-righteousness, that it feels little details like plot and character development are unecessary for this spaceman opus. And I even admit to being a shameless Keanu apologist, because I view his characters as some permutation of Ted from Wyld Stallyns. In Parenthood there was Boyfriend Ted, in Matrix there was Hacker Ted, and in Point Break there was Surfer Cop Ted. But, unlike the alien E.T. who pedaled his way into our hearts back in '82, Alien Ted only makes you look at your watch and wonder why you continune to waste your life in movie theaters.

On a positive note, Will Smith's son (Jaden Smith) had a good role as the lone voice who dared to ask of the alien invader "Why don't we just kill this guy?" The only sane voice in a movie full of actors thinking they're Mother Teresa incarnates for making us movie-going rubes aware of the problems the Earth faces. I hope that kid goes far in Hollywood and makes movies for the sake of...(wait for it)...people enjoying the movie.

The Problem That Wasn't There: Neo-Nazis in the Military

Sherlock Holmes Blogger Turns Up Jack and Shit

Today's moran is David Neiwart of Crooks and Liars, who has a detailed post about how many returning veterans are going to morph into modern-day Timothy McVeighs to wreak havoc on America. Not sure where to begin on how the military is a non-racist institution, since it's been integrated for a very long time (courtesy of Prez Truman). Honestly, we don't even think about it anymore. I've met a lot of different people during my time in service and I've met some pretty strange dudes, but none of them have been neo-nazis.

Being accused of just "not liking brown people" is a very serious offense by DoD policy, and can get you suitcase-tossed out (as the clowns at Stormfront whine about). And, in true military fashion, there's an entire acronymn'd program (EEO) dedicated to investigating racist complaints. They check for gang tattoos while in-processing into the military, and I have some not-so-fond memories of standing around in a room with a bunch of dudes in their undies, while a cadre of MEPS personnel checked us head to toe.

As for Timothy McVeigh, his beef was over Waco, which most youngsters probably think is an Xbox 360 game. And strained race-relations the LA riots wrought in the early 90s...most youngsters probably don't remember those either. But, Mr. Neiwart laments it could all come home to roost during an Obama administration:
In our current situation, these veterans not only will have served with neo-Nazis amid their ranks, they will likely be faced with unemployment and a wrecked economy, eager for someone to blame and fully trained and capable of violent action.
I suspect this has to do more with the Alinksy-stlye tactic for liberals to demonize their conservative opposition and has little to do with what's really going on, as he has a theme of calling people he doesn't like racists. Sucks the military had to get caught up in this punditry. I'm sure he'll apply the same rigor in finding out who torched Sarah Palin's church! And if he can call all politically-minded soldiers he doesn't agree with "Timothy McVeigh", I get to call all long hair liberals "Charles Manson". It's only fair.