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16.5.03
 
Quote of the day

From Hamad bin Hamed Al-Salame, writing in the Saudi newspaper Al-Jazirah (must be a popular name), via James Taranto:
Oh foreign cave-dwellers, depart our country and go to hell! Leave us. We are a believing people, and our government is wise... Go with all your ugliness and baseness... Go to hell. All your terrorist acts and bomb blasts will not make us bow our heads... Go to the place from whence you came, to the caves of Tora Bora, and kiss the feet of your masters who taught you to spill blood and kill innocents... They were the ones who taught you how to lie, deceive, and mislead the simple folk. Go, cowards... go to hell, or go to the heaven of your leader, who taught you sorcery in the caves of Tora Bora. Sit by his side in the dark paradise of ugly ideas and deeds... which if distributed to all the inhabitants of the Earth would suffice them until the Day of Judgment...

Go, idiots, and awaken all the sleeper cells... Wake them, and go with them, far from us. You have no place among us... Go to hell.
Nice to have these guys on our side for a change, and to hear this kind of rhetoric aimed at those who truly deserve it. Let's roll!

 
Bonjour, Dominique, espèce de connard


The French Foreign Ministry has instructed its diplomats to "monitor the U.S. media for signs of "an orchestrated campaign to discredit it".

France has done enough on its own to discredit itself. We don't need someone else to make us hate you. But at least now I know why I keep getting hits from the French Google site for the words "Villepin sexy".
As part of the campaign of explanation we are undertaking in the United States, we have decided to count the untrue accusations which have appeared in the U.S. press and which have deeply shocked the French.
Gosh, I can't even count how many untrue accusations I've made about la France on my own blog, much less the rest of the media. Good luck counting, Inspector Clouseau (and what does it say about the French that their first thought about bad press would be some sort of conspiracy?)

I am confused, though. What, pray tell, would shock the French anyway? As Merde In France and the Dissident Frogman make clear on a daily basis, our snail-eating friends set the bar for shock pretty high.

Forget the U.N.; what the French do in their own country would make Howard Stern blush. Last year's best-selling book and must-have coffee-table piece was a detailed sexual history of the secret life of a famous writer who had had sex with thousands of men, women, barnyard animals, and who knows what else. Contestants on France's most popular reality show, "Big Brother", demonstrate how you can use their version of the "Barney" dinosaur as a marital aid during primetime. Osama bin Laden's face adorns the newest crop of cellphones and his words will announce your voicemail for a couple extra francs per month. Cemeteries of foreigners who died liberating the country are desecrated without anything more than a mild murmur of disapproval from the government. Gang rapes and rape victim beatings are common on the streets of Sarcelles. The TotalFinaElf corruption scandal reaches into the Presidential Palace on a level far beyond Paul Krugman's wettest, wildest Enron fantasy, et cetera, et cetera...

And they're shocked by "freedom fries"? Please. Even Americans whose only knowledge of the country comes from the movie "Casablanca" has learned to snicker when Frenchmen whine about being "shocked--shocked!"

All our media did in this case was simply report the facts for us to decide, and even our commentary is based in fact. The French do eat cheese, they have surrendered a few times in recent history, and they are primates, related to monkeys like the rest of us.

But for all this, France refuses to take this lying down:
She told a regular briefing that France had denied all such accusations "with the utmost force."
Uh-oh. Sounds like it's time to worry. "Utmost force" sounds serious. What could they be planning? Commando raids on blogger homes? Dispatching their one nuclear submarine, assuming it still runs, to take up station off of Washington, DC? Lawsuits? Taunting us a second time? Providing flight lessons for Sarcelles youths BEFORE they travel to America? Fetching la vache? Could get nasty.
In Washington, a spokeswoman for the French Embassy said French Ambassador Jean-David Levitte had written a letter to the U.S. Congress and the Bush administration complaining about alleged false news stories discrediting his country. "The letter will be handed over sometime today."
A letter? Oh, that's right, they're French, so there is nothing to worry about, then. If anyone at the French Embassy is counting, here's two more American insults, and I'll even make them in French:
Je m'en branle de tes conneries, M de Villepin.
Va te faire enculer, M le Président Chirac.


That guy from Matrix: Reloaded is right; cursing in French IS rather like wiping your backside with silk.

 
We stand on guard for thee


I wanted to quit ragging on the French, I really did. I mean, Merde In France and the Dissident Frogman live over there, and do a much better job than I do. And as a Dallas blogger, I should try to be like the more established bloggers in the 'hood, and maybe complain about exams while calling liberal idiots "asshats", insist that people refer to me as Caesar while ripping off liberals' heads for sport, or combine trenchant architectural/cultural criticism with libertarian philosophy and mild liberal-bashing.

But then I read this piece about Canadian Prime Minister Jean Chretien's latest speech, entitled "We're Best". Canada's French. Sort of. And while there's nothing wrong with loving your "country" just as much as we do down here, you should at least have a clue:
But he bragged that's why the Liberals were in government -- because they were prepared to make tough decisions: "You have the NDP who think a good singsong will cure all the problems of the world, rather than take the responsibility."
Funny, Jean, but I believe that we Americans have been the ones taking on the responsibility for curing the problems of the world the last few months, while the only contribution the Chretien government made to the debate or the war effort was a stream of abuse. I don't know what you would call calling us morons and bastards for several months, but I wouldn't call it responsible.
This is why we have gun control in Canada, because we are a different society ... We don't have big debates on the rights of abortion because we decided a long time ago in Canada it is the choice of women, which is not the case in a lot of U.S. states.
"A lot" must mean something different in the metric system than in "real" measurement. Last time I checked, abortion was legal in all 50 states, predicated on the woman's right to choose. Sure, we seem to debate the issue a bit too often, but freedom of speech and debate is one of the key rights we went to war with England to preserve. Oh, that's right, I forgot. You folks stayed out of that war, too. My bad.
That is why we abolished capital punishment, because we believed in a civil society, because we believe capital punishment is not a remedy for social ills.
We don't believe capital punishment is a remedy for social ills, either. We believe it's a great way of making evil people think twice before they kill someone.
Chretien took the opportunity to give himself a pat on the back for keeping Quebec in Canada, and declared a victory over separatism. "My friends, in all modesty, I think that we can state without hesitation that when it comes to the important file of national unity we can say, 'mission accomplished."
By all means, take a bow, Jean. Nice to hear that you have finally "solved" the issue of Québecois separatism. Just remember that we solved our own separatism issue a bit more decisively down here about 150 years ago, back when your House of Commons was in London. Of course, I can't imagine why all those Québecers would want to secede in the first place, when it seems like all the Prime Ministers are French.

Perhaps I'm being a bit too hard on the PM. For all I know, he could have SARS or a Letterman-style case of the shingles.

They say stress can bring on the shingles, and the PM must have a lot on his mind. Now that Saddam's out of power, his son-in-law on the board of TotalFinaElf won't be shipping a nice cut of those oil-for-food Francs from Baghdad to Ottawa via Paris. And there's the news that 3% of Canadians are sexually drawn to children, an issue that hit home during his son's recent trial.

Happily, 34-year-old Michel was found not guilty of all three counts of sexual assault on a 19-year-pld girl with a drinking problem--one recently, one from when she was 11, and one accusation sealed by the court. According to the report, they both admitted that they were just drinking all day, and the woman accusing him testified that she just passed out and was evidently confused when she woke up to find Chretien-fils having sex with her.

It's tough being a Kennedy, or even just the Canadian version.

Oh, what the heck, let's bash Papa Jean anyway; it's good to bash someone other than the French and the Democrats.

As Mark Steyn and most of my Canadian friends have noted, you may be mentally challenged.

And if that doesn't work, I have three words for you: Wayne. Gretzky. American.

 
Affairs of State -- Carolina and Dook, too


And on to what really matters in life... the Atlantic Coast Conference. The ACC is finally expanding to 12 teams, reportedly adding three from the Big East. Since there are four teams worth getting, this should be an interesting couple of weeks.

My predictions?
* Miami, definitely, that's a no-brainer. we'd own Florida instead of just having a foothold.

* Syracuse? Another no-brainer. Great academics, great basketball, OK football... if they weren't in New York, they'd be in the conference already. And this gives us a great entry into New York.

* Boston College? Probably. It's far, but it would give us coverage in every media market on the East Coast except Philly.

* Virginia Tech? Depends on how much we want Boston and how loud UVa yells. Probably not, though, since we already have coverage in Virginia and the fact that I, well, hate Virginia Tech. There's the issue of Frank Beamer turning UNC down a couple of years back, and one Virginia school with a silly nickname is about all I can stomach. The "Wahoos" are bad enough; do we really want to invite the "Hokies" in, too? And, for that matter, what IS a "Wahoo" or a "Hokie", anyway?
No matter what happens, the money and the competition, especially in football, will be fantastic. The jury is still out on how they'll split up the conference, but I have faith in John Swofford; he was a much better AD at UNC than the goofball we have now.

The only drawback? We didn't invite East Carolina. Not that I mind, but I am going to have to spend the next twenty years explaining media economics and the law of diminishing returns to my purple-obsessed friends back in the homeland. Along with the same tired arguments from them about why Conference USA is a better conference than the ACC, Big 12, and Big Ten COMBINED. Whatever. Steve Logan is gone and Carolina is playing ECU again, but the chip on Greenville's shoulder remains. Happy, happy, joy, joy (that's sarcasm, a valid literary concept).

 
How will Cody eat?

Wal-Mart will no longer carry Kathie Lee Gifford's clothing line. My question isn't about the Honduran sweatshops, but rather, who exactly bought the stuff in the first place?

15.5.03
 
Better the Iron Lady than those cardboard men


Maggie never lost it. Baroness Thatcher, happy warrior and defender of the faith, over her sickness and speaking out again (via Instapundit). On war and France:
For years, many governments played down the threats of Islamic revolution, turned a blind eye to international terrorism and accepted the development of weaponry of mass destruction. Indeed, some politicians were happy to go further, collaborating with the self-proclaimed enemies of the West for their own short-term gain — but enough about the French. So deep had the rot set in that the UN security council itself was paralysed.
On the political culture in America and the UK:
We knew, too, what did not work, namely socialism in every shape or form. Nowadays socialism is more often dressed up as environmentalism, feminism, or international concern for human rights. All sound good in the abstract.

But scratch the surface and you will as likely as not discover anti-capitalism, patronising and distorting quotas, and intrusions upon the sovereignty and democracy of nations.
And she hits the nail on the head about the antiwar movement, better than anyone else I have ever heard:
There are too many people who imagine that there is something sophisticated about always believing the best of those who hate your country, and the worst of those who defend it.
We've missed you, Maggie, and the more I read, the more I realize we still need you. Secretary-General of the UN Security Council, perhaps? Lots of "wets" and socialists there to offend and drive out, just like the old days!

 
Reloaded


Rocks. As worthy a sequel as The Empire Strikes Back or Godfather 2. That good. All the action, mind-screwing, eye candy, and just plain coolness of the original, and the story takes you deeper. A few thoughts:
* Best car chase since Ronin (not only did the Matrix build their own highway for the scene, but they had to have gone through at least two or three days' worth of worldwide production from GM while shooting it)
* Best quote, soon to appear in Merde In France: "Cursing in French is like wiping your a** with silk"
* Best villains: The Merovingian and Persephone. The Twins are cool, but M and P remind you of that classic deliciously wicked sexy coolness that is so French but so lacking in the real France today
* Persephone again -- the stills don't quite capture the character on the screen. You will drool.
* I don't bake, but if I had the recipe for the Merovingian's cake, I would
* It's also the best Cadillac commercial ever (for the first time in my life, I actually want a Catera or CTS or whatever it is they're calling the new one)
* Just like the first movie, you get through the whole thing without the line "Ted 'Theodore' Preston, Esquire" running through your head -- now that's directing
I'm already pumped for the conclusion in December. Memo to the reclusive Wachowski brothers: screw this up with Ewok-like cutesiness like Lucas did with Jedi, and I will hunt you down.

Worth the extra money to see on the big screen... unless you live in Dallas and go to the the cinema in town at CityPlace whose name rhymes with "Bose". The previews didn't even start until 50 minutes after the 10:45pm start time listed on my ticket. I didn't get home until 2am, and no apology from the theater... unless you count the coupon for a free SMALL coke ON YOUR NEXT VISIT that a very dejected employee was desultorily passing around as we filed out -- I could have used the caffeine right then and there!

I give the local theater guys credit for doing what they could, and I know the legal folks won't let anyone say anything beyond a generic "pardon the inconvenience" message and the marketing and customer retention folks couldn't get the idea of an apology gift approved unless it was tied to more money coming in, but this is petty.

The same sort of backhanded, self-serving gesture you see all too often, that leads people to loathe lawyers and the major airlines in particular and corporate America in general. Especially when a simple apology before the movie started or being able to redeem your coupon for a drink right then would have sufficed.

U P D A T E
Yes, I went to see a Matrix movie at 10:45pm on a weeknight. But the showtimes didn't start until 10, and the 10:00, 10:15, and 10:30 shows were sold out already.

U P D A T E
OK, I am a closet geek. Get over it. Sometimes you just have to embrace your inner nerd.

 
WAR IS PEACE
FREEDOM IS SLAVERY
IGNORANCE IS STRENGTH
WINDBREAKERS ARE SEXY


Orwell's 1984 is alive and well in Pyongyang. Fascinating story about life in the North Korean Army ("Kim's Korps") from a recent defector.

 
Cookie monster

The lawyer who wanted to ban Oreo cookies in California has decided to drop his suit: "It's no longer necessary to continue the lawsuit because at the time the lawsuit was filed nobody knew about trans fat. Now everybody knows about trans fat."

While this is marginally a victory for liberty and freedom of choice, it still reflects how the usual assortment of trial lawyers, celebrities, and Democrats in Texas and everywhere else view the judicial and legislative branches of the government as nothing more than tools for expressing and imposing their worldview on the rest of us.

And just like Janeane Garofalo, they don't feel the slightest remorse over their actions, either. After all, when you believe you care more than everyone else, then anything can be justified. Of course, that's how Russia got Stalin, but I'll save that for a later post.

14.5.03
 
Zut alors!


Wow. Not only linkage from Merde In France to the Villepin/Matrix piece from last week, but inspiration as well.

Monsieur W (Not) Merde, I believe it was Elvis who said "Uh, merci, merci beauuuuuuucoup."

I'm so honored, I feel like I should make like a Frenchman and take the day off. Although I can't imagine, for the life of me, why they're striking. A strictly enforced 30-35-hour work week, cradle-to-grave healthcare and social benefits, 2 months' paid holiday and vacation time... Americans would be dancing in the streets and swilling champagne if they got those benefits; it's a socialist's/Democrat's wet dream. Of course, these benefits mean that business growth is stifled and you have an unemployment rate over 10% that has never gone down, even during the Internet bubble of the late 1990s, but you can't have everything, can you?

One of the best things about Merde In France is that I always learn something when I visit. For instance, the French slang equivalent to "this rocks" is "je kiffe un max." And the French term for "swingers" is "échangistes".

Échangistes... curious. Sounds more like people in the banking business than bored suburbanites engaged in retro-70s sexual shenanigans. Of course, given the way Chirac, de Villepin, and the rest of the UMP are in bed with TotalFinaElf, Saddam Hussein, and any other dictator who hints that they might send a few francs to Paris, maybe the association between sex, banking, politics, and a laissez-faire approach to fidelity isn't so weird after all...


 
Remember the Alamo?


One can only hope.

When faced with an uphill parliamentary debate, Texas Democrats, um, run away and hide. Bowie, Travis, Crockett, and the rest of the 1830s death-before-dishonor San Antonio crew must be spinning in their graves.

Just like the judicial filibusters in the U.S. Senate, the Democrats here in Texas feel empowered to ignore and thwart the will of the people by any means necessary when that will does not agree with what the Democrats want (88 of the 150 state representatives are Republican). It's anti-democratic, wrong, and petty. I was about to ask if the Democrats have no shame, but then I remembered they're the party of Clinton.

The fault, dear Dems, is not in your stars (or even a certain carrier landing), but in yourselves. Get used to being away from office, boys. I don't think many people will be giving you warm welcomes or votes anytime soon.

U P D A T E
And now they even have their own deck of trading cards, just like the Iraqi baddies. (via Instapundit)

 
Our friends, the Saudis, now irony-free!

Sad about the bombing, but it looks like Arabs are finally coming around to our point of view:
It goes without saying that those responsible, those who poisoned the minds of the bombers, those who are planning to become bombers, must be tracked down and crushed — remorselessly and utterly. But crushing them will not be enough. The environment that produced such terrorism has to change. The suicide bombers have been encouraged by the venom of anti-Westernism that has seeped through the Middle East’s veins, and the Kingdom is no less affected. Those who gloat over Sept. 11, those who happily support suicide bombings in Israel and Russia, those who consider non-Muslims less human than Muslims and therefore somehow disposable, all bear part of the responsibility for the Riyadh bombs.

We cannot say that suicide bombings in Israel and Russia are acceptable but not in Saudi Arabia. The cult of suicide bombings has to stop. So too has the chattering, malicious, vindictive hate propaganda. It has provided a fertile ground for ignorance and hatred to grow.
(via Instapundit)
Welcome aboard, Bandar. Now let's go kick butt.

 
More idiocy

Mark Steyn was fired today, but, as with everything else, he handled it with class and rapier wit. Please come to America full-time, Mark, like every other Canadian with talent, drive, and good humor. We even have hockey.

 
I'm a jihadi, you're a jihadi, she's a jihadi, wouldn't you like to be a jihadi too?


Image from Mecca Cola advertising (via Merde In France)

Nothing quenches a powerful thirst like the cool, crisp taste of martyrdom.

And kids! Don't forget to try your luck with the "Summer of Hate '03" contest: grand prize, 72 virgins, second prize, a Britney Spears CD, third prize, one of 200 exclusive Axis of Evil pogs. Each pog has a picture of your favorite anti-American action heroes, including Osama bin Laden, Saddam Hussein, and Dominique de Villepin! Collect 'em, save 'em, trade 'em with your friends! Hours of fun! Better hurry, though -- supplies are limited, and the contest ends soon, with the help of the Coalition and a few U.S. Marines.

 
All the news that's fit to BS

Can't say I'm too surprised by the controversy at the New York Times. Confirms many of my worst fears about the leftward lurch under Howell Raines and the well-intentioned but corrosive nature of affirmative action. If this issue is your bag, head over to Andrew Sullivan's site. He's all over this thing like stink on merde.

My candidate for the nation's new media source of record?


Fox News. of course.

 
Tonight

The Matrix: Reloaded. Cool.

13.5.03
 
Fair play

But then, what do I know? I'm only a man.

 
Nanny alert

A lawsuit seeking to ban Oreo cookies. This is why I vote Republican, even though I believe in the free market of ideas and even sexual expression just as much as I believe in the free market. Conservatives might bellow and wail as they tell you you shouldn't do something, which they do quite often. But the liberals and the PC crowd will tell you you can't, and will do everything in their power to impose their will.

The nascent "nanny culture" in this country makes my blood boil. Unless you're a woman who wants to have an abortion, the biggest threat to freedom of choice in this country is not John Ashcroft, Pat Robertson, the GOP, people from Lynchburg, Virginia, or even Andrew Sullivan on one of the days he isn't bashing Rick Santorum. The threat comes from the seemingly pervasive idea on the left that they have the right to take away our freedom to choose simply because they think they "care" more than the rest of us. Asshats.

 
Saudi bombing

Not too worried about the Al Qaeda blasts in Riyadh. Why? Glenn Reynolds said it best:
I think it's a sign that their reach has grown short, when they can't arrange terror attacks except in their own hometowns.
This is the "big response" they were promising if we invaded Iraq? Ha!

We are winning. Thanks, Tad!

 
Top Gun

For somebody who gets picked on for mangling his words, the President seems to be communicating extremely well.

And the Democrats just won't shut up about it. Enough of the petty jealousy, folks. The damage has been done, and carping about it only reminds us why the image is so powerful in the first place.

I know you Dems are fans of the well-intentioned gesture that inevitably blows up in your face, but this has gone beyond silly. Here's a tip: try having an original idea. One that doesn't involve prescription drugs for old people. Terry McAuliffe, you owe me another $250,000.

 
Happy watching

Matrix: Reloaded premieres tomorrow night here in Dallas, and the next-to-the-last Buffy the Vampire Slayer is on tonight (the last few episodes have been very good).

And speaking of Sarah Michelle Gellar, the ladies at Right We Are recently posted a link to a Republican Babe of the Week Site, where I learned that Buffy is a Republican! Now she is perfect.

And if she needs a job once "Buffy" ends, I'm sure Fox News could make room:


More like hope, really.

 
Real journalism, fair and blonde

I love Day by Day, the right-side answer to Doonesbury.


The lips in question:


Yes, we love the blondes of Fox News at this site, and all the things they remind us of:



I knew it might take a while to get Laurie's picture back on the front page, but by gosh, I found a way.

 
Debbie did us


Recently, D Magazine posed this question:
Dallas is flat and ugly. It tries too hard to be an international city. The summers are insufferable. The people are all rednecks. So why do we live here?
I agree with many of their 59 answers:
1. The most beautiful women in the world.
2. 207 days of convertible weather.
5. Turtle Creek Boulevard.
6. The speed limit on the Tollway.
10. White Rock Lake.
12. Being able to park.
19. A grilled cheese and chocolate shake at Highland Park Pharmacy.
21. Deep Ellum.
22. Holiday lights in Highland Park.
23. Greenville Avenue St. Patrick's Day Parade.
25. Debbie did us.
33. H. Ross Perot's ears.
38. Mark Cuban's goofy enthusiasm.
42. We created both Barney and Doom.
45. The Katy Trail.
46. A two-hour flight to either coast.

58. Cheerleaders.

and the biggest reason of all, number 59:

WE'RE NOT HOUSTON!

Even if you get past the swamp-like humidity, the cheerleader-murdering moms and the women using motor vehicles to resolve relationship issues on your way to the only good places in H-town, NASA and IKEA, you now have to worry about alligators. Apologies to John Little.

A few things I'd add to the Dallas list (and will probably add more later):
--Mexican seafood at Calle Doce in Oak Cliff
--Knox-Henderson: 105 brands of beer, great sushi, Mexican and Cuban food, and an Apple Store within walking distance and a Virgin Megastore 1 exit away
--and, not to be too sappy or anything, but some of the best friends in the world.

 
Frank Answers

IMAO has taken it upon himself to answer questions about the nature of the universe. I wish he'd get back to the fake (I think) press conferences where Rumsfeld slips off his leash and mauls reporters. It's been a week already!

 
Dr. Kim Jong Ev-IL

North Korea is now firing lasers at us. No word yet as to the type of "lasers", frickin' or not, or what the "lasers" were mounted on, sharks, giant mutated sea bass, or something else.

But Kim, no matter where your secret lair may be, surrounded by liquid hot magma in a volcano, in a submarine, or even a Pyongyang basement, please, please, lose the Members Only jacket. It isn't helping you any.

 
On assignment

I haven't fallen off the face of the earth--thanks for asking! I've just been slammed with a couple of projects and a few personal things. Regular blog resumes early this afternoon.