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May 19, 2009 - May 12, 2009

Monday, May 18, 2009


Dog Love

Tell it to those eyes.

NOT ALL DOGS ARE WHAT YOU'D CALL SMART. There's a fascinating little firestorm underway over at the Chicago Tribune, where columnist Eric Zorn had the temerity to suggest that dogs don't  "really" love their owners. Then Jonah Goldberg penned a rebuttal, which Zorn re-rebutted, and finally a torrent of commenters weighed in to offer their own opinions. The whole circus is worth reviewing, and while it may help set some latches for my own comments, it's not an absolute prerequisite for understanding this post.

I've had a lot of dogs, known many more, and I've also read some of the more durable analyses of their behavior, like Konrad Lorenz's Man Meets Dog and Elizabeth Marshall's Hidden Life of Dogs. I routinely watch documentaries on the subject of dog evolution/husbandry and dog intelligence, and I watch the Dog Whisperer, usually sympathetically but sometimes skeptically. I know that sharing my reading in particular will be sufficient grounds for some of you to dismiss my thoughts out of hand, but since that's also part of my point, I'm sharing it anyway.

What was most interesting to me about the commenters was how readily they all leaped into a discusssion about dogs in general, whether their evidence was genetic, biochemical, behavioral, or broadly anecdotal. I think scientists tend to make this assumption as well, to their considerable detriment as experts. It's become an obstacle to their understanding of human beings, too, this notion that to understand the generic machine is synonymous with understanding (and frequently dismissing or derogating) the emergent properties of that machine, which are in reality so various, subtle, and abstract as to be quite beyond the reach of science.

I'm not suggesting scientists shouldn't do their best to use their tools in all the ways they can think of. What I am proposing is that they consider the possibility that there might be such a thing as a "Biological Uncertainty Principle," that the more closely you analyze an organism as a machine, the less clearly you can perceive the synthesis of the multifarious phenomena produced by that organism. Taking things apart is the opposite of putting them together and seeing the whole. It's an occupational hazard of scientists. They identify specific individual mechanisms, observe how they work, and even measure them to some degree. Then they publish or pronounce an answer, usually reductive in nature, which they believe to be the truth of the matter. It rarely is.

An electronics engineer can take apart every single piece of the technology involved in producing, transmitting, and receiving television signals, which can be valuable information, but that does not mean he can claim to be an omniscient expert on "television," which incorporates so much else that his technical skill set probably represents a positive hindrance to his perception of it. He looks at the screen and sees photons streaming at light speed, while someone else looks at the same screen and sees drama, humor, education, frequently powerful images, music, and words, and sometimes authentic human experience. Some, of course, may see both, but they typically handle the contradictions by seeing them as two separate subjects, which in the larger sense they simply cannot be. It is rather that one perspective is definable and measurable, and the other is so much less so as to seem almost insubstantial, though it clearly is not..

The dog debate is a beautiful place to see this principle in action. What I know for a fact is that there is no final answer on what dogs are and how they experience life. Just as is there no final answer on the human brain, human psychology, and human consciousness. There are only the newest tentative hypotheses, which should, always, be subtitled with a huge disclaimer in red: "WE DON'T KNOW. It's a mystery we keep working on. Pardon our pose of certainty. That's how we do things in this business."

The only relevant question about dog capacity for "love" pertains to their level of consciousness. How conscious are they? We don't know. Behavioralists are inclined to make a big deal out of things like the "mirror test," which shows only that dogs don't recognize themselves in the mirror while three-year-old children do. Meaning dogs don't possess the sense of "self" we associate with consciousness. But the mirror test proves nothing, except possibly that dogs don't isolate their sensory experiences in the same way we do. Or, more accurately, that the dogs they studied in their clinical laboratory experiments don't respond to them the way three-year-old children do. Have the scientists invented a "smell mirror" yet? Don't think so. But whereas sight is the number one sense in humans while smell is the number one sense in dogs, don't you think that's a distinction with a difference?

In point of fact, there's a whole range of problems with the scientific testing that's been done on animals, especially dogs. I'll mention just two. First, they probably don't give a rat's ass about what we're studying them for, and when we move them into a laboratory we take them away from the personal and environmental context in which they have amply, repeatedly, astonishingly proven themselves better at understanding our language than we have ever been at understanding theirs. Second, dogs are no more "all alike" than human beings are. There are genius dogs and idiot dogs, good dogs and bad dogs, talented dogs and go-to-hell jock dogs, etc. And the ones who are likely to be available as lab rats probably do not have the same experience of intense, loving human interaction that millennia of human experience should have demonstrated goes hand in hand (or is that hand in paw?) with the most extraordinary capabilities they have displayed in a variety of endeavors.

Oh, but science insists on excluding anecdotal evidence in the presumptuous attempt to (dis)prove what cannot be proven in scientific terms -- that dogs are conscious beings with sophisticated emotions and responses. It's been said by, yes, some maverick scientists, that there's more proof of reincarnation than of black holes, but the reincarnation evidence is all anecdotal, which is, essentially, all it can be. The same is true of canine consciousness.

My personal theory based on a lifetime of close interactions with dogs? Not all dogs are conscious, but some are. I have exactly the same theory about human beings. Not all human beings are capable of love, either. But some are. And, significantly, the only proofs we have of human love are purely -- TA DA -- anecdotal. It just happens to be a kind of anecdotal experience we can accept because we ourselves may be part of the body of anecdotal evidence.

Now I'm going to justify the use of anecdotal evidence by individual people on the subject of dogs. All you scientists can leave the room. (You're making the dogs nervous anyway.) I have some questions you can ask about your own experience. Have you ever had a dog who engaged in deception? Have you ever had a dog who had a sense of humor -- a joke he played on you, a silly game he invented and initiates at his own choosing, an instance when he was laughing at you? Have you ever had a dog who, for reasons of his own, not yours, was evidently embarrassed? I suggest that these are all indications of self-awareness, of a self with an interior mental life of some sort. I am asking you to be rigorous about it. Try to explain every instance away.

But if you can't explain it away, one instance is all you need. If one dog is self-aware, any might be. And if dogs have an interior life, they can also be aware of the otherness of others, and so capable of deep emotional relations with those others.

The "one instance" rule is critical. As it is with humans. If Einstein could imagine the space-time fabric of the entire universe, that is a human capability. The same applies to dog intelligence. If the best border collie in the world can take out a herd of sheep, put them in their grazing ground, and bring them all safely back home at night, making hundreds of individual decisions along the way without human intervention, then "the dog" has that capability. If a single mutt can find his way back home from a hundred miles away and persist in that effort until he returns to his family, then "the dog" has that capability. There is, for example a dog featured on the "Dog Geniuses" show who took to arranging a staggering number of stuffed toys into patterns, incuding lines and circles, in his back yard, which is by any measure a conceptual feat of some magnitude. That, too, is "a dog" capability. So, by the way, is genuine canine-to-human love.

The scientists don't like the "one instance" rule, but they have no conceivable grounds for rejecting it except ignoring the evidence. Otherwise, their reflexive bias toward generalizations about average test subjects would also persuade them that no human being can run a mile in less than four minutes, sculpt the tactile perfection of the Pieta, perform 'impossible' calendar computations as fast as a computer, or dream up the theory of relativity.

Scientists love the deterministic nonsense of their assertion that enough monkeys randomly typing on typewriters would eventually produce the works of Shakespeare.  But they hate the implications for their methods of a corollary question: Just how many college drop-out patent clerks would you have to study in a laboratory to discover that human beings were capable of the works of Einstein?

You think about your dogs while they think about that.

UPDATE. Rand Simberg of Trans-Terrestrial Musings has checked in with a comment and a link to his own take on the matter, "A Canine Turing Test," which is, as these things always are, slightly different from mine. If you're interested in the subject, read him, too. I especially liked his daring in bringing cats into the discussion:

I would say that the old saying about ducks contains multitudes of wisdom, and if it walks and quacks like a loving dog, Occam would suggest that we assume that Fido (or in his case, Cosmo) loves us, in his own dog-like way. And while I’m sure that Jonah would be appalled at the notion, I’m sure it applies to cats as well (again, in their own way). Jessica sleeps on us, she nuzzles us, she gently taps my cheek when she wants to be fed, she never deliberately scratches me, even when I’m doing something she doesn’t like (like giving her a bath).

I was instantly reminded of this critter, my Bengal, who is in many respects a wild animal subject to the evening crazies, climbing straight up doorjambs, UFC-style takedowns of our urbane 20-lb feral Mickey, and so incredibly strong at just 7 lbs that it was all I could do to get her into the cat carrier for her last checkup at the vet. She fought like hell for five minutes continuously, determined not to go gently into that black vinyl night, no matter what. Except that she never scratched me once. Not even by accident.



Good point, Mr. Simberg. And another that I didn't have a place for in my essay: dogs come to us from wolves, the second most successful land predator on Planet Earth. To this day there are wolf packs which have successfully defended and retained ownership of den territories for thousands of years, longer than any single feudal human kingdom in history. On what basis do we trivialize either their intelligence or their capacity to understand the experience of living in complex societies?

UPDATE 2. Thanks to Jonah Goldberg at National Review Online for the link. I suspect he's summoned a whole horde of Furies at his back he little dreamed were there.





Halleluiah! Halleluiah!


LEST WE FORGET. Google had the following two sports stories stacked one over the other this afternoon. Too perfect.





I admit it. I had stopped believing in Hope & Change. I'm a new convert. Suddenly, almost unbelievably, the two biggest clowns who drenched the airwaves with their slobbering idolatry of Brett "The Weepily Unretiring" Favre are gone. John Madden has gone home to the mutation ranch where they grow those eight-legged, seventy-pound, man-loving Tom turkeys, and now, today -- booyah -- Tony Kornheiser is entering the unstoried, unfabled, unlegendary past of ESPN Monday Night Football.

The hat trick will be officially registered when Mrs. Brett Favre finally gives in and allows the world's oldest junior high-school jock asshole to reside on the same acreage with her in Lower Stupid Pickupville, Wisconsin.

That hasn't happened yet, but we're celebrating anyway. We have a Vision. A vision of Monday Night Football that is about the game actually being played on the night it is broadcast. When the announcers will  find something, anything on the actual field of play, to talk about besides Brett Favre and Michael Vick or, when they're being especially clever in their knowing way, Michael Vick and Brett Favre.

There was a time when we thought nothing could be worse than Joe Theismann and whatever made-up storyline he clung to diarrhetically through thick and thin, usually having to do with what a brilliantly prescient football mind belonged to one Joe Theismann, who graduated from Notre Dame, don't you know, and could reduce any football game to the one-note plot he had dreamed up in his hotel room the night before, regardless of what was actually happening on the field.

But then came Tony Kornheiser. 

**************** 

[Thank me HERE for my beneficent omission of the endless list of broadcast crimes perpetrated by this pompous pseudo-intellectual's incessant outrages against every conceivable prior definition of the sins of repetition, loving the sound of your own voice more than life itself, and frankly nauseating homoerotic hero worship of the league's two most repellent permanent adolescent jerks. In NFL history. Ever. By a long, lo-o-o-o-o-ng way.]

****************

Now he's gone. Maybe Grudin will be awful, boring, obnoxious. All we know for sure is that he can't possibly be as bad as Tony Kornheiser.



Halleluiah.




Sunday, May 17, 2009


Government Motors


Doesn't look red to you? Hmm. Must be an "Eye of the Beholder" type thing.

SOME ARE STILL MORE EQUAL THAN OTHERS. I know we carried some water for Chrysler a while back, but we are genuinely relieved that the One has stooped to save General Motors from ruin. It's going to be great participating in the marriage between the consumer market and the government's mission to make us consume what's good for us, however conceived. The good news is that the government's new green mandate does not mean a death sentence for Chevy, Buick, and Cadillac, or we hope, for Hummer and Saturn. Pontiac is, of course, history. And no wonder. Who can regard monsters like this today as anything but criminal?


Sigh.

Bad company. Bad Bad BAD. Some people are really lucky there's no death penalty (yet) for white-collar anti-greenitude. But the new GM is going to fix everything, including our own little wagon.


Are you starting to feel "fixed" yet? I know I am.

Anyhow, thanks to our long history of scrupulous automotive journalism (see here, here, here, here, and here), we've been permitted access to the new post-bailout lineup of General Motors vehicles. And we can assure you, they're gonna be great. At the high end, the traditional brand identities will remain strong.


Cadillac. Plenty of legroom and as much as 5 hp.


Buick. Smaller than the Cadillac but with less power.


Chevy. More of a traditional retro look to preserve the brand. And 2 hp.

For people who can't afford $50,000 and up for their personal transportation, GM will also be introducing a series of affordable ($30,000 to $35,000) energy efficient thingies under the Chevy, Buick, Hummer, and Cadillac brand names, though nobody knows exactly why: without a grille, it doesn't really matter, frankly.


Cool, huh? Like a convertible without all the top-up/top-down hassle.

The all-important mid-range is harder to get information about because Chrysler is expected to aim heavily at this market with its 100cc hemi-powered Fiat 050 (the number signifies that it will actually do Zero to 50 mph, which GM honchos are dubious about, as they are about its greenitude: it's rumored to run on distinctly carbon-unfriendly Paul Newman vinaigrette salad dressing). All we could ascertain for certain is that the current Chevy Malibu will be replaced by the Chevy Moo (though the name could be changed to 'Mu' if POTUS can be won over -- he seems to like the letter "O" for some reason).


The Chevy "M" car (with kind of an "oo" or "ew" sound).

There's also been some clarification about a sensational story that ran in Drudge the other day concerning imports from China. GM spokespotatoes were adamant that such imports will constitute just a tiny fraction of GM's target subjectsaudience, limited exclusively to full-size cars for the very high end of the market, which will probably be marketed exclusively to senior citizens who can't comprehend either the new vehicle designs or the number of zeroes in the $300,000+ price tag. Naturally, the Detroit automaker is concerned about the safety of Chinese cars, but early crash test results indicate that they will NOT pose a threat to the much smaller and more delicate vehicles that will be populating U.S. highways.


Tests indicate that Chinese sedans will pose no threat to smaller vehicles and
will also help achieve Obama's goal of slashing MediCare costs for the elderly.

So the flurry of alarmist chatter about safety problems under the new Obamatized nationalized fascist taxpayer-subsidized GM is entirely unfounded. Thanks to this new partnership between business and government, average citizens will receive a host of benefits never dreamed of in the bad old days of corporate greed and exploitation. Scientific tests have already demonstrated conclusively that next-generation transport appliances will not only reduce the costs of long-term healthcare for the hopelessly maimed but also incentivize (we just love that word, don't you?) ordinary assholes fat-asses flyover slugs gun junkies Christo-bigots folks to slim down and become agile enough to survive thrive in the new green world of tomorrow today.


At last. A real motivator to get in shape. We'll all feel better for it, won't we?

There are a few lingering problems that the Emperor of the World the President the Management Committee is still working on, including the prospect of a slight increase in casualties during the transition from evil old big cars to the hideously expensive new deathtraps  relatively economical green machines we're all so looking forward to. Some of those rich old Jews capitalists Republicans who insist on keeping their Mercedes Benzes could pose a serious hazard to law-abiding comrades citizens, as they are already doing to last-generation green machines.


Anyone can see why there will need to be new laws. About property.
And who it has to be taken away from. Plus, you know, prison terms.

These kinds of problems could never have been sorted out before. Because businesses weren't required to care about what was good for us, but only what we wanted in our usual stupid myopic way.  The really great news is that it isn't going to be up to us anymore. It will be up to Obama the government the experts who know better than we do.

I know I'm breathing easier already. The truth is, I can't wait. For the first time in my half century of life, liberals are going to be putting their lives on the line for the total crap they believe in. To see that, just once, I'd drive a segway to fucking Antarctica.

P.S. Off point but topical. A new site has opened up with the the apparent intention of blasting the Obama administration with New Media. They've redubbed the Wanda Sykes monologue at the White House Correspondents Dinner (funny), and they're also running a series of comic book commentaries on the Obamas, which you can see here. We emailed them our congratulations and best wishes and -- because that's the kind of people we are -- we also pointed out that their comic book shtick looks graphically a lot (uh, exactly) like what we we were doing back in 2005. Which is a sore point. We were very proud of our "Valerie Flame" comic, but it netted precisely zero comments. Now we're giving you a second chance to admire it. So there.
 




Saturday, May 16, 2009


For the Record...


That Nazi Devil Vader Blofeld person.

LOOK FOR CHENEY. Okay. We at InstaPunk are officially embarrassed. The truth is, in all our years of blogging, we have never formally and directly posted a post expressly designed to defend Vice-President Dick Cheney. And it's even worse than that. Because most of us have always liked and admired Dick Cheney. But we were relatively silent anyway. We never wrote an essay like the one that appeared today, "Three Cheers for Dick Cheney," written by a confessed liberal critic of Cheney on key issues, which included these specific insights and conclusions (among others -- uh, yeah, read the whole thing) in defense of the former Vice President:

At about 10 a.m. that awful morning, the vice president entered a secure White House shelter. He was told that the Air Force was attempting to scramble planes to defend the air space over Washington. That raised another question, one pertaining to the missing plane White House officials assumed was heading their way: Who was going to authorize shooting it down? Cheney, with Bush's concurrence, gave such an order. Minutes later, officials in the shelter learned a plane had crashed in Pennsylvania. In the unemotional prose of the report, the 9/11 commission noted: "Those in the shelter wondered if the aircraft had been shot down pursuant to this authorization."

At 10:39 a.m., Cheney spoke with Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld. It's clear from the transcript of that call that Cheney believes he may have authorized the shooting down of an American passenger jet. Rumsfeld seems skeptical, but he doesn't really know either. I'm not sure "changed" is the right word, but I believe that in those 40 minutes--with the nation under attack, with Cheney not knowing if his daughters and grandchildren are safe, with his impression that he's directed a very hard order to some flyboy in the U.S. Air Force, possibly killing another 200 Americans--that Dick Cheney resolved to do whatever it would take to protect this country, regardless of the cost to his reputation or popularity. I respect him for that, and I empathize with him....

[W]e definitely do damage to ourselves when we substitute political debate with name-calling and ad-hominem attacks. I think Dick Cheney is wrong on important matters. I also think he is a patriot. And I hate to think that we have lost the ability to hold two such opinions in our heads at one time.

When I read this piece, I did a search of this site (which you can do, too, by typing cheney with no diacriticals into the Instapunk search function on this page). He's mentioned a bunch of times, but only twice in what you might consider a truly supportive advocacy way, albeit indirectly and humorously. (Here. And here.) So why were we so shy about backing him explicitly and non-satirically?

Well, there are two interesting points I discovered by asking this self-incriminating question. I'd like to explain them to you because they relate both to our last post and to the decisions sites like ours make, sometimes unconsciously, about how we fight for what we believe. Which lead us sometimes into errors of omission and commission. Which this was.

Make no mistake. I'm eating crow here. I do admire Dick Cheney. Despite his Darth Vader approach to public relations. Despite his five draft deferments and two DWIs. As I get older myself, I'm more and more often reminded of an offhand remark by F. Scott Fitzgerald that (forgive my inaccurate paraphrase) "physical bravery is largely a matter of being in shape." I myself can no longer comprehend some of the physical risks I took as a young man. I know better than to say I was simply stupid and unimaginative then. I was physically braver. I always had a vivid sensory imagination of the feel, the pain, of broken bones and smashed internal organs. I just prized the joy of defying those outcomes more than I feared them. Now I feel differently. I place more importance on simply being with my family and friends, I am more disposed to savor the middle feelings between ennui and adrenalin highs. Not dying has become a value -- not unalloyed, not absolute by any means -- but greater than I would ever have conceived as a teen or twenty-something. I don't need to go 130 mph on a back road to experience the sensory rush I get from when my infant granddaughter smiles at me and grabs my little finger with her whole hand. And don't think that I have forgotten 130 mph. I haven't. It was great. But it was always a placeholder, an incredibly strong substitute -- even a practice -- emotion for the strong emotions you experience only by living long enough to start living not through machines and athletic feats but through other people and other lives.

Sorry for the digression. But physical bravery is a much bigger deal for old men than young ones. I don't care how many draft deferments Dick Cheney received. He's a very brave man. His heart is somewhere between forty and sixty percent dead. He's known this for a long time. He has nevertheless continuously exposed himself to stress that would kill much healthier men, and he has done it without the single most powerful incentive any man can have for accepting the back-handed honor of the vice-presidency of the United States. He never intended to run for President. And he didn't. Now, when he could be luxuriating in the last-years comfort of a loving family, he comes back again to do battle in the political arena, where he can legitimately expect nothing but abuse, contempt, and ridicule. Why? Because he's a patriot. Because he believes in what he advocates. Period.

Why have we never given him his due before? We have a good excuse and a less good truth to share. The excuse, which is valid, is that the leftists were so determined to portray him as the real president of the United States, manipulating the idiot puppet Bush, that to make him the center of any post was to authenticate the false notion that he was something more than a particularly hard-working and involved vice-president. We didn't want to seem to be exalting the lie that President Bush was not the man truly in charge.

The less good truth is that the left succeeded so spectacularly in demonizing Cheney that it was simply easier, even for those of us who trafficked in satire, to forfeit that game. They ran the score up so unfairly but amazingly high against him that defending him in any but the most cursory way felt like a self-destructive wound to our own credibility. That one's on us. We should have defended him personally, just as we defended Bush for quite similar reasons. We chose not to, because we were being more political than honorable. A bitter pill to swallow, especially when it's administered by a liberal journalist who doesn't agree, as we do, with most of Cheney's positions over the years.

As I said. We're embarrassed.

But there's also an interesting sidelight to this mea culpa. When I did the InstaPunk search of posts that mentioned Cheney, I discovered a slew of entries that don't seem to turn up on other searches, many of them as snide and funny as the best ever published here. Entries I'd completely forgotten. Maybe that's how the subconscious fights back. The satirical urge pushes through rational inhibitions and can't help rattling cages even prudence wants to keep locked down.

Well, think about it. I know I am. Cheers for Dick Cheney.





Dog

She doesn't have to be Immanuel Kant. Does she?

REASONABLETUDINOUSNESS. God, I am so sick of "fair" conservatives.

Here's the official mainstream media version of the setup to this post from the New York Times:

In a wide-ranging interview on Thursday night, David Axelrod opened up about comparisons to Karl Rove, the White House dress code, President Obama’s battle against smoking, the First Family’s new dog and even Miss California.

He did this all on a game show.

The senior adviser to the president and former campaign consultant was the special guest on National Public Radio’s “Wait, Wait…Don’t Tell Me!” which made a road trip to George Washington University in the nation’s capital for an episode that will air this weekend.

Mr. Axelrod – or, as host Peter Sagal called him, “the moustache behind the throne” – was on to play “Not My Job,” in which notable people face pop quizzes about subjects they are totally unfamiliar with. (In Mr. Axelrod’s case, that meant failed historical Utopian movements – or, as the show dubbed it, “No, We Can’t.”)...

[T]here was the conversation weaving between, of all things, Miss California U.S.A. Carrie Prejean, the same-sex marriage opponent who the panel had already mocked at length, and Bo, the Obama family’s Portuguese water dog.

When Mr. Axelrod was asked how involved he was in the selection of Bo, he jokingly answered that he “only got called in for the final three.”

But as Mr. Axelrod was trying to set the record straight – he actually was not consulted – Mr. Sagal asked about the two runner-ups.

“One was Miss California,” Mr. Axelrod cracked to the audience’s laughter.

Ha ha. Ha ha ha. Ha ha ha ha ha. So fucking funny. Especially when you consider what Miss California looks like and what George Axelrod looks like:


Do you prefer the shiny forehead or the weak chin?

Like this guy gets to decide who's a dog and who isn't. This is a schmuck who's absolutely never gotten laid in his entire life, probably not even by his wife, who must have married him for his connections and the fact that he wouldn't bother her late at night, under the covers, because how could he possibly hope to score? When a putz like this attacks a genuine fox, every sentient person on earth, except Democrats, knows why. Envy, jealousy, frustrated lust, and bitter misogyny. Except Democrats. Who know it's all about philosophical superiority. Ideological purity versus neanderthal stupidity. Right.

Forget the world of beautiful Hollywood people who may know enough to realize that beauty is not always synonymous with virtue. Else, how would they explain away Bo Derek, Mel Gibson, and Angie Harmon? What I'm interested in is the oh-so-dispassionate fairness of conservatives who keep looking into the remotest possible corners for exculpatory explanations of what are obviously sick-minded attacks on the most vulnerable possible victims. Here's the even-handed analysis of HotAir's Allahpundit of the absurd assault on Carrie Prejean:

He can’t possibly mean this the way it sounds. I realize Team Obama has its own brand of Newspeak — terrorist attacks are “man-caused disasters,” spending increases are “budget cuts,” etc. — but not even a partisan svengali as dedicated as Ax is going to convince the public that Carrie Prejean’s a dog.

When Axelrod was asked if he had weighed in on the Obama family’s dog choice, “the Rasputin in this kingdom” (as Sagal jokingly refered to him) sassed back, “I was only called in for the final three, and one was Miss California.”

Quoth Jeri Thompson, “Way to be a sexist pig. Thanks, David!” In fairness, I think all he was doing is reaching for a funny topical reference related to judging and this pitiful name-check was the best he could do. Or maybe, given the White House’s knack for picking fights with non-politicians like Rush and Rick Santelli, he was driven to goof on her through simple force of habit. Whichever it is, it’s interesting that this seems to be derisive and yet the only reason a liberal like him would have for disliking her is that she has the same view on marriage — supposedly — as his pal Barry. This may be the best clue yet that The One’s faking.

"He can’t possibly mean this the way it sounds." Right.

Wake the fuck up. How many others of you are out there who will join me in wanting to SCREAM at this kind of moderate "Hugh Hewitt" bullshit?

These are not nice people. They will do anything to win. Our one chance to turn them back is to highlight the instances when they are demonstrably absurd. As when a dickless dork like Axelrod tries to pretend superiority to a chick who would never give him a second look.

Not credible. The only woman who looks like Carrie Prejean who would ever sleep with George Axelrod is a professional call-girl who charges thousands of dollars a night. Who, besides the libs and Democrats, would ever take his assessments of her seriously? And if you do take his assessments seriously, it's time to admit that you're a fucking lunatic -- either too queer to see that Carrie Prejean is beautiful or too sunk in your ideological squalor to remember the transcendent power of female beauty.

Either way, you're a loser. And I mean a Big Time Loser. The common people you think you can touch with your terrible needs are well aware that Carrie Prejean is a beautiful, maybe not that bright girl. They don't think she should be crucified. Torment her and they will hate you. Guaranteed. Why? No philosophy required. They all want to fuck her. Sorry to put it so baldly. But that's the great divide, isn't it? You gays can't imagine wanting to fuck her. So you actually think that if you ridicule her, it's the same thing as dissing Madonna's latest incarnation. You think you can make her unattractive by objecting to her style, her accessories, her statements, her hairdo, her gown, her manner of speech, her opinions.

Well, you can't. Guess what. She's attractive. Men feel protective of her. When you bully her, they get pissed off. Your bullying makes them want to hurt you. The more you attack her, the more they will forgive her for every kind of lapse in intelligence, argument, and consistency. If she posed nude, they will hold it against you for even bringing it up. That's how this game works.

God knows, I don't want yet another idiot on the "curvy couch" at Fox & Friends. The idiots who already occupy that piece of unfortunate furniture are more than enough to make me tear my hair out. BUT:

You guys act like you're the ones who are in touch with your bodies, and sex, and the naturalness of being purely physical beings. But you're also the ones who champion Janeane Garofalo over Carrie Prejean. As a woman. Huh.

You're losing. LOSING. The war. Regardless of what you think, men don't want women whose whole purpose in life is to tell them how awful men are and have always been. Women don't want that either.

We've written about this before. But you just don't ever learn.




Friday, May 15, 2009


Five Links


THE BIG STUFF. Sometimes you have to let the cacophony reverberate. You know. Let all the shrieking and crashing noises speak for themselves. We've let some days go by because even though everything is happening apace, it's also true that very little is happening. Think of the scene in the Poseidon movies where the ship is turning upside down. Yes, there's lot of screaming and angst, things breaking, large pieces of furniture first sliding then tumbling through the air, and finally an intermission of sorts when we see who has been killed, who has been pinned down by what, and who is still alive. Even though the cacophony continues and only one legitimate fact has been established: the ship has turned upside down.



During the past week, President Obama has ordered Israel not to attack Iran, exercised his arrogantly uneducated penchant for business micro-management on the Chrysler advertising budget, and begun (inevitably) blaming American citizens for charging too much on their credit cards with no apparent recognition of any analogous offense by his own administration. Meanwhile, the lefty media has continued its vituperative sideshow attacks on Miss California and Sarah Palin, and the poster girl for irresponsible lefty opportunism in congress has lied the whole country into a self-destructive and unnecessary embarrassment over an issue that could have been tabled momentarily for such pressing matters as the imminent collapse of the Pakistani government and the accelerating death spiral of our economy. (uh, whatever you do, do NOT jump on board with the stage-managed Suckers Rally in the stock market. It, too, will be turning upside down shortly.) And, oh yeah, George Will has finally deigned to notice, in his polite way, that the Obama administration is behaving like a gang of Chicago thugs. RATTLE CLANG BANG CRUNCH.

So while we were letting you listen to the unfolding catastrophe unfiltered, we were doing some listening of our own, seeking out what very few voices we could find on the Internet who appear to be making sense of some kind. We found five links. Five links that also seem to be linked to one another, as if properly interpreted they might represent a helpful chain of reasoning. Here they are. But we're not going to braid them together or otherwise connect them for you. We're enjoying the cacophony too much, or -- rather -- are so steeped in it that we can barely bring ourselves to utter a word. Read them all. Every word. And then have at it. Or, at them. They're all interesting gents who actually said something this week. Which is quite an accomplishment. But what if they're also the blind men separately describing the same elephant from different perspectives? Can somebody explain that to us?


This is a test.

We'll be back with the customary persiflage later. You know. Silly graphics, wild exaggerations, and the like. Everything will be all better. Promise.




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