Friday, May 23, 2003

Al Qaeda has threatened Norway. But the descendants of Vikings are of course not worried, although they've certainly been in the appeaser camp. There is another menace which does seem to have them anxious and depressed, though. Their dogs are too fat. It's obviously Bush's fault. Somehow.

Thursday, May 22, 2003

Outlived his usefulness
Maybe it's premature, but I suddenly find myself less than interested in whether W gets reelected in 2004. The policies I approve of have been implemented and locked in pretty well. Tax cuts, effective war on terrorism, spiking class war rhetoric, they're all important to me and they've all been acted on by the W folks. They can't really retreat from them now. Unfortunately, on some other issues W has sounded and acted more like a statist than some of the Democrats. These include the drug war, the "environment"{ptah!} minimum wage laws, regulation of business, welfare and corporate welfare. For the rest of his tenure, I fear that W will push the parts of the Republican program that I disagree with. My problem is that the Democrats are no better on any of these topics than the Republicans are and are worse on most. So my fallback position is to hope for gridlock, with one party pushing measures I disagree with and the other party blocking such measures only because they don't go far enough. For instance, what is the likelihood that W will try to reduce the influence of the EPA and OSHA, which are handcuffing American business? What are the chances of drug legalization? What effective political force can be seen to push effective reform of immigration laws to keep criminals and terrorists out but to let anyone who is willing to work in, with no welfare guarantees to bring in more freeloaders? The Republicans want to keep everyone out. Pat Buchanan and the labor union Democrats want to keep everyone out, too, but to protect "American" jobs, as though jobs belonged to people. Democrats want to let everyone in who will vote Democratic, but they can't be trusted to effectively keep criminals and terrorists out. Perhaps the only hope is that if, as looks likely, the Republican majorities in the House and Senate grow larger in 2004 on the coattails of a triumphal W, government spending in general can be cut back following traditional Republican fiscal principles - smaller government and a bigger private economy. But given the record under Reagan and Bush 41, I'm not going to be holding my breath. Looks like I'm not going to be voting again in 2004.
Truth from Tehran
Whoever thought that Abu Mazen, the supposed new head of the Palestinian Authority, was out from under the authority of the pig Arafat (ptah!) should read what the Iranians have to say:

"Arafat is at the top of the (Palestinian) Authority. He's the man to whom we refer, regardless of the American or Israeli view of him," Abbas, also known as Abu Mazen, said in an interview with Egypt's semi-official Al-Mussawar weekly.

Did anyone really doubt this? Why is such a public statement not more widely reported? Hello, LGF?

Albawaba has the report too. And it reports Abu Mazen is to meet with Hamas. To "try to convince Hamas to stop carrying out attacks against Israel." Of course. Just like Arafat would do and has done so many times in the past. Just because when they switch to Arabic they congratulate Hamas on the number of Israeli civilians they kill doesn't mean their statements in English were insincere. Does it?

Wednesday, May 21, 2003

Undoing Clinton
It will take at least four years to undo the damage Clinton and his fools did to US prestige and effectiveness abroad, especially on the terrorism front. Louis Freeh should know and now he is laying out just some of the evidence. Isn't there a treason indictment in here somewhere? Patience. Clinton's victims, including those of Waco, Ruby Ridge, Mogadishu, Khobar Towers, the SS Cole, 9/11/2001, can't be brought back to life, but steps can be taken to make sure nothing like his disastrous eight years happens again.

Tuesday, May 20, 2003

Said unsaid has an interesting commentary by actual professors at the University of Washington on the sad career of Edward Said, the pseudo-Palestinian comparative lit guru at Columbia who just can't stop lying. But after all, as with Michael Moore, Chomsky and the other monsters of the pomo left, it isn't the lies that count, it's the amount of money people will pay to hear you say them over and over again. I'm just amazed that professors at a US college are still allowed to think. Or students. It will be a great day when Sharon is invited to Baghdad to sign a peace treaty. Maybe Said can think up a lie or two to explain why that really won't happen and when it does happen, it didn't really happen because the intellectual elite refused to acknowledge that it happened. As for the unity of the Palestinian people against the colonialist oppressors, I think I see a straw in the wind blowing from Baghdad. And from Lebanon. Yes, I love Little Green Footballs.
This analysis of Al Qaeda's latest "soft-target" attacks seems spot on. When I see something I agree with, I link to it so people who read this blog will know it's saying something that is very much like what I would have said if I had gotten it down first. I simply copy the URL, paste it into my blog and then the readers can go to it right from here and read it for themselves. It's as logical and easy as, say, pulling your chair towards a table. (Both via Tim Blair)

This article from National Review Online sets out the "soft-target" thesis clearly. I agree particularly with this part of the analysis.
One theory is that these attacks were undertaken by freelancers-al Qaeda cells that are acting without central direction or without any overriding strategy. That would certainly account for their apparent self-destructiveness by choosing targets in countries where they have bases or at least government tolerance. But if this is true, it only further emphasizes that the organization's leadership is unable to exert overall strategic control, or perhaps even communicate with its operatives.

That's one problem with the "insulated cells" feature of any secret terror organization. It means you can't organize more than one attack at a time in widely separated areas without either exposing the hierarchy to detection or letting members of the cells communicate with each other. Just the fact that the Saudi regime now admits that it has a terrorist problem is a major advance in the war on terror.

Monday, May 19, 2003

Lightning hit my house last Friday, so I've been net-deprived for a whole weekend. Lost a TV, DVD player, three computers, a cable modem, a network router and, oddly, a clothes dryer. And I had a major gout attack, so I spent a lot of time sleeping. Which ticks me off. I've been on a certain gout medicine for like six years now and it never works without making me terminally sleepy. Haven't the evil drug companies come up with something better for what is after all an ancient disorder? I should be able to plug a wire into a jack on my hip and send a signal to the gout-affected joint that will dissolve the uric acid crystals that cause the insanely intense pain. But no. I have to take weird chemicals and wait for two hours and slog around like a zombie for the rest of the day. Not fun. And now I have to buy all this stuff. It's one way to get new computers, I guess. Wish I could afford a Titanium laptop from Apple.