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Monthly Archives: August 2012

In the Trenches in the War on Women

August 28th, 2012 - 7:17 am

This would be a big deal if it were happening at the Republican National Convention:

he Democratic National Committee is taking flak from women’s groups for the lack of child care that is being provided at the convention.

The Charlotte Observer reports that children will not be allowed access on the floor of the Democratic National Convention and that daycare will not be provided for delegates who bring their kids.

It’s almost as if women and children are just props to the vile progs.

CNN head honcho announced a few weeks ago that he would be leaving at the end of the year, because the network needed “new thinking.” Well, here’s some of that new thinking in action:

As during the primaries this year, there will be round tables overseen by Anderson Cooper — perhaps the network’s biggest star — and other anchors, along with a stable of commentators such as the liberal James Carville and his conservative commentator wife, Mary Matalin. Statistics guru John King will work his hands over the “magic wall” of the electoral college once more — in fact, the new studio has two such computerized graphics boards, for even more “Minority Report”-like razzle-dazzle. It will be the first time CNN has managed its convention coverage from Washington.

If watching King massage a magic wall couldn’t stanch the flow of viewers, surely a second magic wall will do the trick. No?

Maybe instead CNN should offer hard news and interesting opinions in compelling ways. They could ditch the glitter of fantastical sets, and spend the money on restaffing their news bureaus around the world. They could stop trying to be MSNBC Lite, and start being CNN again. Why, maybe CNN could even focus on that one thing they used to do better than anyone else in the world ever did, and that’s provide up-to-the-minute, 24-hours-a-day, factually correct information about the news stories people really care about.


The Not-So-Great Game

August 27th, 2012 - 5:05 pm

Taliban beheads seven civilians in southern Afghanistan:

Insurgents attacked a large party in a Taliban-controlled area of southern Afghanistan and beheaded 17 people, officials said on Monday.

The head of the local government initially said the victims were civilians at a celebration late Sunday involving music and dancing in the Musa Qala district of Helmand province. The official, Neyamatullah Khan, said the Taliban killed the party-goers for flouting the extreme brand of Islam embraced by the militants.

However, a provincial government official said later that those killed were caught up in a fight between two Taliban commanders over two women, who were among the dead. Daoud Ahmadi, a spokesman for the provincial government, said shooting broke out during the fight. He said it was unclear whether the music and dancing triggered the violence and whether the dead were all civilians or possibly included some fighters.

Ahmadi said all of the bodies were decapitated but it was not clear if they had been shot first.

No matter what we do, these are the people who will take control of most of the country after we leave. It’s time to come home.

Never-Before-Seen Hitchens

August 27th, 2012 - 3:50 pm

A slideshow from Slate you won’t want to miss, plus a few words from his widow, Carol Blue.

Logic is So Convoluted it’s a Spirograph

August 27th, 2012 - 2:18 pm

You pay your tax dollars to the Washington, which then gives some of them to the FCC so that it can dream up new ways to take more of your tax dollars. The latest bit of unconstitutional moonbattery:

The Federal Communications Commission is eyeing a proposal to tax broadband Internet service.

The move would funnel money to the Connect America Fund, a subsidy the agency created last year to expand Internet access.

The FCC issued a request for comments on the proposal in April. Dozens of companies and trade associations have weighed in, but the issue has largely flown under the public’s radar.

Now, as everybody who ever took Econ 101 knows, if price goes up, demand goes down. So the FCC is going to tax broadband — reducing demand — in order to expand supply to people who already can’t afford it.

Forget for a moment that the FCC created out of thin air a sub-agency to justify a tax it has no constitutional power to create and no authority to collect…

Actually, I take that last part back, as I have no ability to forget all of that for even one moment.

This whole thing is an assault on reason and on the law, but in DC, it’s what passes for brains.

Apple Patent Verdict Fallout

August 27th, 2012 - 12:44 pm

Here’s Google’s statement, courtesy of The Verge:

The court of appeals will review both infringement and the validity of the patent claims. Most of these don’t relate to the core Android operating system, and several are being re-examined by the US Patent Office. The mobile industry is moving fast and all players — including newcomers — are building upon ideas that have been around for decades. We work with our partners to give consumers innovative and affordable products, and we don’t want anything to limit that.

Emphasis added. The “mosts of these” part a quiet admission by Google that, yes, Apple’s victory wasn’t just against Samsung, but against a couple key bits of “pure” Android.

9to5Mac reminds us:

To be clear, Nexus devices are Google devices manufactured by Samsung (or HTC or Acer) and loaded with the “Pure Google Android OS” without any Samsung Touchwiz overlay or carrier software.

Google’s Android OS, not just Samsung, was hit with two different patent infringement charges last week.

And then there’s another bit from Apple Insider:

Analysts on Wall Street reacted positively to the news that Apple had won its lawsuit against Samsung, proving to a jury that its rival was guilty of patent infringement. But though Apple was awarded over a billion dollars by the jury, market watchers believe the courtroom win could have ripple effects throughout the smartphone industry that would be in Apple’s favor.

Maynard Um with Wells Fargo Securities said in a note to investors on Monday that he believes the royalty revenue stream for Apple as a result of the ruling could be “highly profitable.” Apple must still win appeals from Samsung, and would need to be willing to settle future disputes.

Apple earning royalties off of Google’s “free” mobile OS? Sure. Microsoft already earns more money off of Android than it makes from licensing its own Windows Phone OS. That’s not saying much, as WP7 remains stalled, but it still helps prove Heinlein correct when he wrote that, “Anything free is worth what you pay for it.”

Maybe He Only Wanted to Chop Spending

August 27th, 2012 - 11:15 am

Um… I’m pretty sure this is a big no-no:

A Republican National Convention protestor was arrested while he allegedly carried a machete strapped to his leg, according to deputies.

According to Hillsborough County Sheriff’s officials, Jason T. Wilson, of Tallahassee, was arrested as he walked in the RNC Event Zone carrying a “full size” machete.

When deputies approached Wilson, they said he continued to walk away despite orders to stop.

“When deputies caught up to Wilson, he advised he did not have to stop and that he was allowed to carry whatever he wanted,” HCSO spokesperson Larry McKinnon said.

When deputies attempted to physically stop him, Wilson allegedly began resisting arrest and was physically restrained.

Wilson was arrested and taken to the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office on charges of prohibited items in event zone and resisting arrest with violence.

Looks like a nice fella.

Seriously, though — a machete? What was the plan? To just walk in and start dicing delegate? Make julienne fries? Deliver a special gift to surprise guest speaker Danny Trejo?

Progs are vile.

(H/T, Treacher.)

Well, we knew that already. But that evil predatory capitalist, Mitt Romney, is writing checks for three million smackeroos to the Republican House and Senate victory committees:

Unlike President Barack Obama, who’s drawn complaints for being stingy with his campaign cash, Mitt Romney is spreading the wealth among his GOP congressional allies.

Romney’s biggest grossing committee last month steered at least $3 million to boost GOP congressional candidates who will share the ballot with him, according to finance reports filed last week.

Romney Victory, a joint fundraising committee set up by Romney’s campaign and the Republican National Committee, on the last day of July transferred $1.5 million each to the National Republican Congressional Committee and the National Republican Senatorial Committee.

Meanwhile, the Democrats are so far behind in fundraising, that the big guns issued a warning to the President:

Obama’s campaign had transferred money to the Democratic committees in 2008 and 2010, but has yet to do so this year, despite pleas from top Democrats, including Senate Majority Leader Reid and Sens. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) and Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.). They and other lawmakers have implored Obama’s campaign both to transfer at least $10 million to the Party’s congressional campaign arms and also not to max out wealthy donors.

All this comes courtesy of Ed Morrissey, who adds:

I’d guess that the fundraising problems had already become apparent by March, but not the risk of getting so thoroughly beaten on that front. They certainly knew that Team Obama couldn’t count on parity on the super-PAC front, but everyone assumed that the Obama campaign would at least keep pace with the Romney campaign, if not outraise them. Instead, despite Barack Obama having conducted a record number of fundraisers, far outstripping George W. Bush’s 2003-4 number months ago, Team Obama is more than $60 million behind at the end of last month.

The move is also interesting for another reason. Those conservatives who are less than enthused by a Romney candidacy have pledged to work for a Republican majority in the Senate and stronger majority in the House to keep Romney on the conservative policy path. As this donation shows, Romney seems to be in complete agreement with them.

The Obama camp had planned to run a Reaganesque “morning in America” campaign based on a booming economy, and to handily out-raise the GOP nominee.

They planned… poorly.

Don’t Get Cocky

August 27th, 2012 - 8:45 am

David Harsanyi says the momentum has moved to Mitt:

Though Democrats, and helpful pundits, have encouraged the perception of Obama’s inevitability all year, nearly every major national polling firm has had the race within the margin of error from the start. Polls now show Romney not only competitive in Virginia, Florida and Ohio, but also making gains in states that conventional wisdom says were out of his reach: Wisconsin, Michigan Nevada and others.

Apparently, I’m not a “helpful” pundit, because I told you just over a year ago that all those states were in play — including WI and MI. Here’s the very first EC map I put together for the 2012 cycle, back on August 4, 2011.

I’ll continue to do my level best to be unhelpful.

Chris Matthews: Unhinged

August 27th, 2012 - 7:50 am

Re-unhinged? Unhingeder? Judge for yourself.

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With Matthews, everything — any little thing — said or done by the GOP is “the race card.” There’s panic in his voice, in his eyes, and in the air. Delish.

But on Twitter, Politico’s Buzz Feed’s Ben Smith described it as a “shouting match,” even though GOP chair Reince Priebus wasn’t shouting at all.

A few minutes later, Smith issued a “slight correction” to note that it was only Matthews who was “screaming.” I dunno, Ben — when you say a thing happened and it didn’t happen, isn’t that worth a full retraction instead of just a “slight correction?”


Hat tip, Christian Heinze at The Hill, and numerous friends on Twitter who quickly forced the weaselly “correction.”

Islamists on the March through the Steppes

August 27th, 2012 - 5:21 am

Chilling attack in Russia:

On Sunday, a car carrying three men, an automatic rifle and Islamic pamphlets blew up in Zelenodolsk, about a half-hour west of Kazan, in what the authorities described as the inadvertent detonation of a homemade explosive. “That radical direction exists in Tatarstan,” Mr. Malashenko said. “And it’s dangerous.”

The apparent rise of Islamic militancy could have far-ranging effects on foreign and domestic policy, as the Kremlin increasingly looks for ways to promote moderate Islam and quash radical movements at home and abroad.

What’s so chilling is that Kazan is as far north as Moscow, and not too far west of Siberia. This isn’t exactly the Caucasus. Worse, Tatarstan is home to Jadidism, a tolerant sect of Islam. The region has been at peace with itself and with its Orthodox neighbors for a couple centuries now.

Tatarstan has enjoyed a higher level of autonomy than most of the Russian Federation’s other “autonomous” regions. Any attempt by Moscow to crack down could easily help radicalize the population.

A Fish Needs a Man Like…

August 26th, 2012 - 4:48 pm

Big news from North Korea — it’s no longer illegal for women to ride bicycles. Really:

The new government up north is trying to come up with inexpensive things it can do that will improve morale. One recent action was to repeal a 1990s law that prohibited women from riding bicycles. This law was passed in response to the death of the daughter of a senior army general, why was hit by a car while on a bicycle in the capital. This law was very unpopular, and women would often take their chances and pay the fine (a few dollars) if caught. But if caught too many times, the bike (a valuable item) could be confiscated. One reason bikes were so expensive was because North Korea never produced them, they were all imported from China or Japan. This has long been another source of irritation for most North Koreas. In the last decade, the law was generally ignored in the countryside, but still sporadically enforced (as a source of income for cops) in cities (especially the capital). So now there is one less irritant for North Korean women, and a momentary boost in morale, at least for women with bicycles.

How depressing.

Required Listening

August 26th, 2012 - 3:21 pm
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“Blame It On Bush,” by The Voters.

Separated at Birth?

August 26th, 2012 - 1:12 pm

Here’s a little quiz you can take — Was it said by Joe Biden or Michael Scott?

Neil Armstrong: RIP

August 26th, 2012 - 12:52 pm

The very first bit of history I ever learned went exactly like this: Man walked on the moon when I was just two months old and he said, “That was one small step for a man, one giant leap for mankind,” and that man’s name was Neil Armstrong. Age three, maybe four, I was so proud to know all that.

Still am.

And He’s Afraid of Girls

August 26th, 2012 - 9:55 am

Trifecta: It’s the bonus episode where we don’t know the topic going in, but I can tell you it involves a wee tiny little man.

Obama Bullying the Eurozone?

August 26th, 2012 - 6:16 am

Sadly, here’s an item that doesn’t shock:

The Obama administration will pressure European governments not to let Greece fall out of the eurozone before November’s Presidential elections, British Government sources have suggested.

Representatives from the International Monetary Fund, the European Central Bank and the European Commission are due to arrive in Athens next month to assess Greece’s reform efforts.

They are expected to report in time for an 8 October meeting of eurozone finance ministers which will decide on whether to disburse Greece’s next €31bn aid tranche, promised under the terms of the bailout for the country.

American officials are understood to be worried that if they decide Greece has not done enough to meet its deficit targets and withhold the money, it would automatically trigger Greece’s exit from the eurozone weeks before the Presidential election on 6 November.

They are urging eurozone Governments to hold off from taking any drastic action before then – fearing that the resulting market destabilisation could damage President Obama’s re-election prospects.

After the election, I presume Europe will have more “flexibility.” No word on whether the request has been transmitted to Vladimir.

Jazz and Cocktails

August 25th, 2012 - 3:00 pm
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Louie Armstrong, “Do You Know What It Means To Miss New Orleans.” This is a live performance, but I haven’t been able to figure out where or when. I do know the musicianship on display is breathtaking.

We have a choice here between a Hurricane or a Mint Julep, but Melissa still has all that mint growing in the garden. So, Mint Julep it is.

We also have to hurry up and play this one — and drink this one — before we lose the very last of the summer weather. Monument Hill cooled off a couple weeks ago, and doesn’t look likely to warm back up very much before the autumn sets in.

You’ll need:

2.5 ounces Kentucky bourbon – Maker’s Mark preferred
2 fresh mint sprigs
1 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon water

If you happen to have your wife’s grandmother’s old julep glasses, by all means give them a quick polish and use them. If not, a Collins glass will do. My wife likes hers a little weaker and a little sweeter, so I double the water and sugar for her.

Trim your mint sprigs so that they’re the right height to serve as garnish. Trim off all the lower leaves, then muddle them in the bottom of the glass with the sugar and the water. Muddle them hard and release all that minty goodness.

Fill the glass all the way to the top with shaved or crushed ice, pour in the bourbon, then top off with a little more ice. Stick in a straw (we’ve got to get silver ones to go with the glasses!) then garnish with the sprigs.

Here are the two I just made.


AND ANOTHER THING: I’d usually leave it at that, but sipping at my cocktail and listening to Armstrong got me thinking. Or, as close to thinking as one can do on a sunny Saturday afternoon spent sipping at a cocktail and listening to Armstrong. What I’m thinking is, the huge debt we owe to Louis Armstrong.

Without Armstrong, jazz and pop as we know them simply wouldn’t exist. He did more than any other single artist to define both — and he did so as an instrumentalist of unparalleled talent and as a vocalist of sublime and restrained emotiveness. Without Louis, how do you get to Charlie Parker? Without Louis, how do you get to Ella or Frank? He’s the guy who started it all.

Oh, and he wasn’t a bad actor, either, with 18 movies to his name.

We’re lucky we had him. I’m going back to my cocktail now.

News You Can Use

August 25th, 2012 - 11:09 am

Reason has the nation’s five dumbest drug laws. I’m especially fond of this one:

In New York, possession of small amounts of pot has been decriminalized, but it’s still a crime to take the pot out of your pocket and wave it around like you just don’t care. That distinction — between possession and display — seems pretty simple on its face. How hard could it be to keep your weed out of view? Not hard at all, unless an officer with the NYPD stops you as part of the city’s stop-and-frisk policy, and asks you to empty out your trousers. In that case, the simple act of pulling out your weed for inspection qualifies as display. According to The New York Times, this Kafkaesque paradox results in “tens of thousands of young black and Latino men who are stopped by the New York City police for other reasons…being charged with a crime” after emptying their pockets.

The drug war has descended into parody — a life-ruining parody.

Steve Jobs is Not of This Earth

August 25th, 2012 - 9:26 am

OK, so that’s been true for almost a year. But there might be more to it:

A Thai Buddhist temple has claimed that it knows the whereabouts of late Apple co-founder Steve Jobs in the afterlife.

Wat Phra Dhammakaya, which made the revelations on its website in a post titled ‘Where Is Steve Jobs,’ claimed the Apple co-founder is a mid-level angel living in a parallel universe.

This to me makes a small amount of sense.

The Week in Blogs

August 25th, 2012 - 6:05 am
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Friday Night Videos

August 24th, 2012 - 10:38 pm
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Unfortunately, this is not the kind of thing St. Louis radio stations were playing in the early ’80s. I had to move to California at the end of the decade to catch up on all the Goth-y goodness I’d missed out on.

And this is as good a place as any to start — with one of Bauhaus’s more …approachable… singles.

Link Bait

August 24th, 2012 - 4:16 pm

From the Department of Duh:

Prince Harry has worked hard to transform his image from playboy to a modern royal serving Britain on the front line, but having naked pictures beamed around the world will not help his cause.

Ya think?

The Next North Korea

August 24th, 2012 - 2:41 pm

The new North Korea has 80 million people, a savage level of popular ignorance, imports half its calories, and an armed cadre willing to lob missiles at its wealthy neighbor. Did you guess Egypt? Of course you did:

While the world persists in looking for signs of pragmatism in the Egyptian president, Mohamed Morsy is quietly taking over all the power bases in the country.

Having gotten rid of the army old guard, he replaced them with his own men – officers belonging to the Muslim Brotherhood or known sympathizers. Then he turned his attention to the media, replacing 50 editors working for the government’s extensive and influential press empire – including Al- Ahram, Al-Akhbar, Al-Gomhuria. He is now busy appointing new governors to the 27 regions of the country.

In these kinds of “revolutions,” victory always goes to the most ruthless. Just how ruthless Morsi really is remains to be seen, but I’m not hopeful. Even in the best-case scenario, there are still plenty of underlings even more ruthless, ready to knock off Morsi at the first sign of weakness.

See What Todd Akin Hath Wrought

August 24th, 2012 - 1:06 pm

The latest Missouri numbers from Rasmussen.

I was too kind the other day when I said Todd Akin was “too much ego and too little sense stuffed into an otherwise empty suit.”

Far too kind.

How Do You Say “GM” in Mandarin?

August 24th, 2012 - 11:54 am

Looks like China’s been cooking the books using an old (but still useful!) trick from General Motors:

Zero Hedge covered the topic of automotive channel stuffing long before it became a conversation piece, particularly as it pertains to Government Motors, a topic which has recently taken precedence after being uncovered at such stalwarts of industry as German BMW and Mercedes, implying the German economic miracle may, too, have been largely fabricated. Another core topic over the years has been the artificial and inventory-stockpiling driven (in other words hollow) “growth” of China’s economy, whose masking has been increasingly more difficult courtesy of such telltale signs of a slowdown as declining electricity consumption and off the charts concrete use. It was only logical that the themes would eventually collide and so they have: the New York Times published “China Besieged by Glut of Unsold Goods” in which, as the title implies, it is revealed that China is now nothing more than one big “stuffed channel.”

One of the reasons people learned to hate GM cars was they had lousy resale value. There were two primary reasons for that. One was GM’s over-reliance on sale to rental companies, which meant there was a steady and large supply of used cars as Hertz, Dollar, etc. rolled over their inventories. So when you went to trade in your five-year-old Chevy, it was worth maybe half of what your neighbor was getting for his Honda. The channel-stuffing hurt, too. GM had to get rid of those cars eventually, and the way to do that was to put cash on the hood — discounts, rebates, subprime loans, whatever it took to move the metal. Downward price pressure on new models did nothing for the resale value of your older model. To say the least.

Helluva way to build brand loyalty, eh? You might be getting screwed on your Chevy trade-in, but at least you’re trading it in for a new Honda. Once bitten, twice shy.

But we’re not supposed to be talking about GM; we’re supposed to be talking about China.

Imagine, if you will, that the world’s smokestack country, the place that manufactures all the cheap stuff, has been stuffing all the channels. From coal and steel to finished products, there’s just a lot of excess inventory built up of everything.

What happens to the price of steel, the price of coal, when Chinese firms have to “move the metal?” That could very well kill demand for our country’s products, as China sells at big losses. Sure, we’ll get even-cheaper Chinese goods to import, but that won’t make much difference for laid-off steelworkers. And our own manufacturers won’t be doing much extra hiring in the middle of a price war.

Next year — maybe sooner — is looking more and more like a hard landing. And we’re still not yet to the point where we’ve been down so long it looks like up. There’s a long way down left to go.


The Twitter Deficit

August 24th, 2012 - 10:33 am

This is not how you keep the grassroots engaged:

Forty-one percent of the commander in chief’s 18.6 million Twitter followers are fake, 35 percent are inactive and 25 percent are “good,” or likely to be authentic, according to Fake Follower Check, which scours the messaging service specifically for phony adherents.

About 45% of Mitt Romney’s followers are believed to be authentic.

For what it’s worth, I just tried the Fake Follower Check, and my 13,000 or so followers look like this:

It’s difficult to get a read on those “inactive” accounts, whether they’re followers of mine or Obama’s or anyone else’s. Lots of folks sign on to Twitter to follow people they like, and not to engage or broadcast. So some percentage of those inactive accounts are probably still being used, but there’s no way of telling what percentage.

Now I just wish FFC would tell me which followers are fake, so I could block them. I don’t run up the follower count just for the sake of running up the follower count. Spammers I block at once, but the silent fakes are harder to discern.

Set the Wayback Machine for 1995

August 24th, 2012 - 9:50 am

Ars has a cute article on their writers’ favorite bits of orphaned technology. The very first item is Iomega’s Zip drive. It was a big-ass floppy you shoved into a ruggedly-built custom drive — and the early models held a whopping 100 megabytes. To put that in modern terms, that’s about 5 RAW pictures from Nikon’s prosumer-grade D7000. But in mid-90s, hardly anyone was taking digital photos. Ripping your CDs into MP3 files was still pretty bleeding edge stuff. We simply didn’t need endless gigabytes of storage.

Well, then there were freaks like me.

I had a Zip, mostly for sharing files (ahem: games) with other like-minded Zip users. But a year or so later, I upgraded to a Pentium Pro tower, with a wicked-fast SCSI HD and CD-ROM interface. And do you know what you could plug into one of those? The Iomega Jaz drive.

The original model could store a gigabyte on a single, removable disk. In today’s terms, that’s enough room to hold just one hi-def hour-long TV drama, encoded at a nice bitrate and 720p. But I think the hard drive in that Pentium Pro was all of 2GB. So I kept a few Jaz disks on hand for weekly backups. It was a helluva lot faster than backing up to tape, even if it was a little pricey. Silly me, I wasn’t smart enough to keep those backups off-site. Lucky me, I never needed them.

My next computer had some massive-for-the-time hard drive, and the Jaz was instantly obsolesced. But for a short time, there was really nothing like it.

The Hottest Models, Only on VodkaPundit

August 24th, 2012 - 8:45 am

Alert Reader bdog57 has his own model for wargaming the electoral college, and it goes a little like this:

Click for the full-size version — you’ll need it, if you value your eyeballs.

He has a fascinating methodology, although you might need to invest in a bigger monitor to appreciate it. Maybe I should have asked for the raw spreadsheet file…

We Have Always Been at War with Eastasia

August 24th, 2012 - 8:15 am

I so did not see this one coming:

Reuters source: North Korea is seeking permanent peace treaty with SKorea, U.S. to formally end Korean War

— Michael van Poppel (@mpoppel) August 24, 2012

That’s via SooperMexican, who adds, “This is rather surprising, given the antagonistic stance North Korea has taken against South Korea and the US.” No kidding. He goes on to ask:

But what would peace even mean?

North Korea is known for a brutally oppressive government that brainwashes it’s citizens to mindlessly worship the state. Just recently in the Olympics, a North Korean athlete was heard to say in a rare interview:

“I believe the great Kim Jong Il looked over me. … I am very happy and give thanks to our Great Leader for giving me the strength to lift this weight. I believe Kim Jong Il gave me the record and all my achievements. It is all because of him.”

Notice it’s Kim Jong Il he thanks, not the current leader, Kim Jong Sung. He is literally crediting a dead leader for his excellence in the Olympics.

Is this new regime open to real reforms?

Probably not. And when I searched Google News for anything more than Poppel’s tweet, this is all I could come up with:

North Korea on Friday called for an end to the hostile relationship between Pyongyang and Washington while reiterating it will pursue for a nuclear-free Korean Peninsula.

That’s hardly the same thing as a permanent peace treat with Seoul, with whom Pyongyang is still technically at war (us, too).

So what the hell is going on north of the DMZ? As usual, nobody really knows.