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Monthly Archives: January 2002

All Your George Are Belongening

January 29th, 2002 - 10:19 am

All Your George Are Belongening To Us
You’ve got to read The Chronicles of George. Whether you are or are not a techweasel, this is funny, funny stuff. I damn near wet myself.

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How The Left Was Evil

January 28th, 2002 - 9:17 pm

How The Left Was Evil

Tom Tomorrow, writing on the Enron Mess, concludes with: “Villainy, fraud, sex, death and a stonewalling White House. You think this thing is just going to blow over? Excuse me while I wipe the tears of laughter from my eyes.” [Italics mine]

Let’s get this straight. Tom gets a good giggle — no, a tear-inducing belly laugh — out of what he thinks is a murder. Think I’m exaggerating? Read this snippet from the same post: “We’ve got at least one mysterious death–the apparent suicide of a former Enron executive who, from all reports, had nothing to hide, but was expected to be a major whistleblower in the case. ”

Yeah, Tom doesn’t have the stones to come right out and say it, but he clearly implies murder, coroner’s report to the contrary. And he thinks murder is pretty damn funny when it furthers his objective of embarrassing the President.

Remember the video of Osama laughing at the deaths of 2,800 Americans when those deaths furthered his political objectives? Is his mindset really that different from Mr. Tomorrow’s?

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One of my favorite subjects

January 28th, 2002 - 9:07 pm

One of my favorite subjects of scorn, those bastards at the FDA, are still being bastards according to drug companies in this Wall Street Journal Story.

In no surprise to anyone who watches the industry, the FDA bastards have slowed down the drug “approval” process. So it takes longer — and costs more money — to get life-saving, life-prolonging, life-improving drugs to market. All in the name of protecting the helpless consumer from the all-evil, predatory, malicious drug industry.

Now, let’s look at this rationally for once. Executives at drug companies owe their livelihoods to saving your life. If the drugs don’t work, they don’t get sold. If the drugs are deadly, the drug companies get sued into the Stone age. FDA bastards owe their livelihoods to avoiding bad headlines. One case of one drug hurting one person can ruin a bureaucrat’s entire career, so it pays for him to delay making a decision. But the poor slob who died because a better drug wasn’t yet approved doesn’t make the headlines at all — it’s not news when a drug that’s not on the market doesn’t do a job it hasn’t been approved for yet. You’ve never seen in the paper, “Air Traffic Controller Forgets to Tell Airplane It’s Safe to Land, Plane Lands Safely.”

Says Fred Hanssan of Pharmacia in the WSJ story, “We are now beginning to see some new innovations that are approved earlier in Europe than in the U.S. This drug lag is not good.” That’s right, folks — the Brusselscrats are jumping ahead of us in medicine. It’s a good thing we don’t have an FCA to approve new computer chips — we’d be blogging on 386s. New 386s.

FULL DISCLOSURE: VodkaPundit lost his father to a blood clot. At the time, the FDA bastards were keeping a superior blood-thinning agent off the market. The drug in question had been proven 99% safe, but those bastards at the FDA still chose to sit on their hands and wait for more data.

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In a post last week,

January 28th, 2002 - 4:13 pm

In a post last week, VodkaPundit made some rather un-PC remarks about the, uh, amplitude of brilliant LS contributor Natalija Radic‘s chestal region. In fact, I did so at the disparagement of her legs. New photographic evidence refutes my prior statement, and an apology is in order.

Natalija, I’m sorry. I was wrong — you have amazing legs.

And for the record, my just-as-sweetly-shaped fiance now says she hates you.

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OK, Jonah Goldberg is off

January 28th, 2002 - 3:45 pm

OK, Jonah Goldberg is off the hook today for his brilliant G-File post this afternoon. Sometimes, that man just nails it.

UPDATE: You might be wondering what hook Jonah got off of today. Well. We libertarians, even the small-l variety, distrust the G-File Man because he simply (and on purpose) refuses to understand, or even properly describe, our beliefs. And we get especially wary when he uses the word “libertarian” in his stories — it automatically increases the sensitivity of our Cringometers. Anyway, today Jonah wrote a great bit and managed to use the L-word without me feeling any sudden need to throw my mouse at the screen.

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Will Warren, the poet laureate

January 28th, 2002 - 3:36 pm

Will Warren, the poet laureate of the blogscene, has done it again. Take that, Jonah Goldberg!

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Random Thought The “civilized” world

January 28th, 2002 - 3:29 pm

Random Thought
The “civilized” world — you know, those useless Belgians and whatnots — is upset about our prisoners at Gitmo not because of how we’re treating them. They’re mad because they know that if those were our people, we’d have successfully rescued them by now in some daring around-the-world raid. And because no country in Europe has half that ability.

So in all seriousness, allow VodkaPundit to say “Neener.”

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VodkaPundit has long admired the

January 28th, 2002 - 3:13 pm

VodkaPundit has long admired the Bush family’s devotion to their friends. But the time has come for CIA head George Tenet to go.

Really, September 11 was reason enough to sack Tenet, but check out this new revelation from the Washington Post, courtesy of Best of the Web:

“This has bin Laden all over it,” Tenet said to Boren. “I’ve got to go.”

He had another reaction in the first few minutes, one that raised the possibility that the FBI and the CIA had not done all that they could to prevent the terrorist attacks from taking place.

“I wonder,” Tenet was overheard to say, “if it has anything to do with this guy taking pilot training.” He was referring to Zacarias Moussaoui, who had been detained in August after attracting suspicion when he sought training at a Minnesota flight school.

Keep in mind, this was minutes after the WTC attack. In other words, the very top guy at the CIA knew personally of the Moussaoui case, but did nothing about it. Not a goddamn thing.

If we can hold accountable the former Afghan government for hosting al Qaeda, then we can — must — hold accountable those in our government who missed their chance to stop the attack.

Heads must roll, Mr. President.

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I know it is Glenn

January 28th, 2002 - 12:39 pm

I know it is Glenn Reynolds’ sacred duty to scoop all other bloggers all the time, but did InstaPundit have to beat VodkaPundit on this story?

MSNBC reports that alcohol may ward off Alzeimers. If that’s the case, why can’t I ever remember where I left my drink?

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Fight the Fascists at Home,

January 28th, 2002 - 12:01 pm

Fight the Fascists at Home, Too
Just when you thought AG John Ashcroft couldn’t get more annoying or useless, he’s ordered “nude” statues at the Justice Department covered. For months, I’ve said the only reason worth watching an Ashcroft press conference is the off chance of catching sight of a lone aluminum breast. And literally, that’s all there is to see. But Pompous John of the Bible Belt is tired of being associated with a really well-formed, presumably very firm breast.

So he ordered drapes for it.

Do I have to remind him, too, that there’s a damned war on?

UPDATE: Shall we start a pool over how long it will take before my first Google hit using the keywords, “Ashcroft,” “firm,” and “breast?”

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“Ecuador Plane Missing with 92

January 28th, 2002 - 11:50 am

Ecuador Plane Missing with 92 People on Board,” Enron executives questioned.

OK, so I made up the second part.

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Can’t We Put Aside Stupid

January 28th, 2002 - 11:45 am

Can’t We Put Aside Stupid Agendas And Just Think Department
Bill Safire has his usual well-reported and well-reasoned take on the whole POW/unlawful combatant flap over at the State Department.

The solution is simple: al Qaeda officers are unlawful combatants and may legally be shot out of spite. But no matter how much we’d be in our rights to do so, we should not shoot them — they’re too valuable as intelligence sources. al Qaeda foot soldiers, on the other hand (pun intended) are pretty much like enlisted guys everywhere — powerless, uninformed, just following orders. Treat them as POWs and look nice to the idiots over in Europe.

Officer = unlawful combatant, little guy = POW.

Got that?

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Screw You, Too, NYT An

January 28th, 2002 - 11:14 am

Screw You, Too, NYT
An unsigned NYT editorial lambasts Bush for doing little for the environment. First, maybe they ought to blame Clinton for all that dust in Manhattan the last four months. Second…

…the environment? People, there’s a war on.

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Over on Strategy Page, Steven

January 28th, 2002 - 11:03 am

Over on Strategy Page, Steven Cole files this report on the Russian Navy. Oh boy, the Russians laid down the keel of the first of ten tiny little ships?

This isn’t the yawner you think it is. In fact, it’s as vital to your future almost as much as it is to Russia’s.

For much of the last sixty years, Russia has been trying to play the superpower game. But they were sadly underequipped. You know the reason: An economy just too damn small to support power projection. Hell, even during the heady days of the ’70s, when Soviet power was apparently at its apex, they couldn’t properly project real power any further than Magdeburg, East Germany.

Sure, their diplomats were scoring points all over Africa. They even rented out the Cuban Army to fight in Angola (in an odd historical twist, one of our big oil companies, Unocal, I think, was helping to finance the Marxists in that war. And the South Africans were good guys. Go figure. Anyway…).

Real power projection requires a blue water navy. That means big ships, especially aircraft carriers. Carriers allow you to bomb anyone, anywhere, and on fairly short notice. While our Air Force was still struggling to set up one base in Kraplekistan, hte Navy was already pounding targets in Kabul. The Soviets tried to build a carrier, but the best they could do was a ski-jump looking thing that launched obsolete-at-the-time YAK-38s. Sad, really. It made the Charles de Gaulle look fearsome. The only things that kept the Soviets in the superpower game were a shitload of SS-18s and -25s, and Eighth Guards Tank Army sitting opposite the Fulda Gap. 8th GTA is now disbanded and the nuclear-tipped missiles are either rusting away or were negotiated away.

So what’s the big deal about the Russian Navy ordering ten little corvettes for coastal patrol duty? Easy — ten tiny ships aren’t one big one. The Russians have finally recognized that, at least for the middle term, they’re out of the game. That implies that they also see that they can either play the game our way, or remain backwards, broke, and broken.

And it looks like for the first time in a long time, the Russians are doing something right. I hope so — they’ve suffered enough.

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Click On Over

January 28th, 2002 - 10:45 am

It took longer than I’d hoped, but James Taranto of Best of the Web has finally posted his readers suggestions for new silly lawsuits. Oh, and some Simpsons humor, too. Check it out.

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Never Put Off Until Tomorrow

January 28th, 2002 - 10:33 am

Never Put Off Until Tomorrow What Can Be Put Off Until The Day After Tomorrow
I keep forgetting to permalink the mighty USS Clueless. The good captain Steve, who has a truly fine first name, helms an excellent ship. Bookmark him.

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It’s Worse Than I Thought

January 28th, 2002 - 10:16 am

It’s Worse Than I Thought
My latest Google hit came off the search for “Connie,” “Chung,” and “hottie.” You people are as bad as me. I love you all.

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Maybe I Was Wrong After

January 28th, 2002 - 10:12 am

Maybe I Was Wrong After All
Yowza. The Telegraph UK just fogged up my monitor with a hot little report on Enron. Says, “office affairs were rampant, divorce among senior executives an epidemic, and stories of couples steaming up glass-walled offices after late-night meetings were the talk of Houston.”

I’ve been saying all along that this, ahem, affair would play out worse for the Republicans — but now it’s sounding more like Clinton redux.

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Oldest Joke Department TV “psychic”

January 28th, 2002 - 10:06 am

Oldest Joke Department
TV “psychic” Miss Cleo has been ordered to stop calling unhappy customers, pressuring them into paying disputed bills. OK, everyone say it with me: You’d think she’d have seen this coming.

The Borscht Belt will never die.

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One Last Sunday Post Department

January 27th, 2002 - 3:22 pm

One Last Sunday Post Department
David Carr at Libertarian Samizdata has a brilliant reply to my “Congruent Forces” piece from Thursday.

My favorite bit: “These are the values breathed into America by the great English and Scottish enlightenment and it is why Americans like Stephen Green rightly call us The Mother Country, for the ‘American Revolution’ was not so much a revolution as a Civil War between the rebels trying to champion those ideas and their imperial rulers whose persistant continental wars had so wounded them.”

Carr argues in the same vein that Britons are being systematically denied their heritage of liberty by Europhiles and New Labour. For some real lyricism far sweeter than anything I wrote, check out his concluding paragraph. Just read the whole thing.

The Rams are up 10-3. I’m going back to the game now.

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I usually refuse to post

January 27th, 2002 - 1:59 pm

I usually refuse to post on weekends, but this site deserves to be linked immediately. A raised glass to Next Right!

And now if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to go play with the cat and watch the Rams.

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It’s time for VodkaPundit to

January 25th, 2002 - 8:23 pm

It’s time for VodkaPundit to get down to the serious weekend drinking. Also, the VodkaFiance is demanding fettuccine Alfredo — and no one makes it better than yours truly.

Enjoy the weekend, kids. See you bright and not-so-early Monday.

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The I Give Up Making

January 25th, 2002 - 1:18 pm

The I Give Up Making Fun of Jesse Because Other People Do It So Much Better Department:
For the sake of all that is unholy, click on over to Happy Fun Pundit for the best take down of Jesse Jackson since his mistress sued his ass last year.

Best line? “All your profit are belong to us!”

You ancient gamers got a kick out of that one, anyway.

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The Washington Times reports we’re

January 25th, 2002 - 1:02 pm

The Washington Times reports we’re slapping sanctions on China because — one mo’ time — they’re exporting components for WMDs. (That’s weapons of mass destruction, kids. Nukes, Bio, Chem = NBC or WMD.) Anyway, don’t bother to read this yawner. Instead, truck over to Amazon and pick up a copy of Gordon Chang’s The Coming Collapse of China.

This book has been my bedside reading all week, and it’s part of what led to yesterday’s minidissertation on a similar subject. Chang’s writing isn’t the most supple, but he paints a convincing picture. Namely, that China’s refusal to truly reform their banks, coupled with what’s going to be their first real competition — thanks to the WTO — means a short, unhappy future for the Chinese Communist Party.

VodkaPundit says China won’t go the warlord route. Not quite, anyway. But when the center in Beijing collapses — and it will — no new center will quickly arise to replace it. We’ll see competing governments, ala Tapei vs Beijing, only writ much, much larger.

Catch up on your Robert D. Kaplan and Ralph Peters over at Parameters for a more brutal, much better written glimpse into the future. Sorry for not having the links, but I won’t have access to those until this evening.

UPDATE: Here’s that Ralph Peters link over at Parameters. In case you’re not familiar, Parameters is a quarterly publication of the US Army War College. Don’t think Rambo, think Thucydides. Very smart stuff. You can also find Peters’ superb fiction on Amazon. Same goes for Kaplan’s non-fiction.

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More smarts from Victor Davis

January 25th, 2002 - 11:51 am

More smarts from Victor Davis Hanson in today’s National Review Online. Check this out:

“Rarely do our scholars, pundits, and social commentators apologize for completely getting it wrong about their earlier admonitions during the last four months

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Sarge Stryker is back from

January 25th, 2002 - 11:01 am

Sarge Stryker is back from wherever he was, and with a vengeance. If he keeps up at this rate, he’ll make Glenn Reynolds look like Cal Coolidge.

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Sorry for the slow post

January 25th, 2002 - 10:19 am

Sorry for the slow post pace yesterday, but I wrote (what I think were) a couple of real quality pieces and wanted people to see those easily, rather than scrolling through the usual long collection of notes, asides, and bad gags.

I promise to get back to being funny and useless today. While I try to wake up with a seriously powerful cup of Starbuck’s Yukon Blend and catch up with the headlines, why don’t you scroll down to “Congruent Forces” and then past that to “Today’s Random Geopolitical Thought.” I promise neither one is too heavy for before lunch.

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Brilliant writing by… someone over

January 24th, 2002 - 1:35 pm

Brilliant writing by… someone over at Strategy Page (it’s an unsigned bit). If you want to find out how military intelligence interrogations really work, then read this. But by all means do not read it if you are a member of the US or UK press. Oops — they’ve managed to studiously ignore this kind of thing for sixty years.

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I think everyone is linking

January 24th, 2002 - 12:54 pm

I think everyone is linking to Bill Safire’s column today, and with damn good reason. If you haven’t read it yet, then do so.

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Congruent Forces

January 24th, 2002 - 12:34 pm

Last Friday, Krauthammer wrote that, during wars that matter, Americans are “immune to casualties.” It’s what Kennedy meant when he talked about paying any price and bearing and burden to protect freedom. Now word comes from the UK that Britons overwhelmingly support US treatment of detainees at Gitmo, no matter what lies their left-liberal press tries to spoon-feed them.

These two snippets help explain why VodkaPundit unashamedly calls England “the Mother Country.” Most of my forefathers got their asses kicked by Brits at one time or another; hell, some of us got kicked out of England herself — literally 86ed from an entire country. And yet I hold no grudge against the UK, even though I’m famous for doing so for even the slightest slight.

Why?

I could pay the usual lip service in thanks to England for inventing modern individual liberty, but that’s not it. Not all of it, anyway. I think, instead, the most important thing we mongrel Americans have kept from our pasty-white cousins is character. That same Jack Bull stubbornness which produced the Magna Carta; that created, endured, then got rid of Oliver Cromwell; that made for such hearty pioneers who first dared tame North America; that stood up to Napoleon when no one else would; that lost an entire generation of young men rather than see the Continent under the Kaiser’s fist; that survived the Blitz, and that lost an Empire while keeping a stiff upper lip.

These are the reasons I love the Britons. Except for one more.

In the last eighty years, the Brits have watched their upstart younger cousins here first grow as strong, then far stronger, than themselves. The French sneered at us for it. The Germans did worse. And everyone else resented us, at best. But not the Brits. Through every crisis from the Berlin Airlift to the Present Mess, they have stood with us shoulder to shoulder — even when their elites told them not to. And it is that strength of character we inherited from them which will allow us to prevail in the new global war.

Thank you, Britain.

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