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Wednesday, September 27, 2006

SILENCE HEARD

The Guardian’s Jonathan Freedland—senior operative behind Operation Clark County—on Tony Blair’s farewell speech:

Yesterday Blair also offered a reminder of why he had to leave - and why they will be relieved when he has.

It came in the passage about international affairs. Suddenly the applause died as the prime minister announced that terrorism is unconnected to foreign policy, and only enemy propaganda would say otherwise. Blair is one of the very few people left on the planet who still believes this: even the CIA now concedes that the invasion of Iraq has fuelled terrorism rather than curbed it. So when Blair said that a withdrawal from Iraq or Afghanistan would be “a craven act of surrender”, he said it to silence.

Really? Reader BB sends this video link to Blair’s speech, and suggests we check out “the specific example Freedman gives of a ‘silence’ after the phrase ‘craven surrender’.”

UPDATE. Jim C.:

The short video is edited, so it’s not necessarily accurate. However, there is a link to the full speech on that same page.

The relevant parts occur at about 36 and 39 minutes into the speech. There’s definitely applause there.

Freedland is a liar.

Posted by Tim B. on 09/27/2006 at 11:42 PM
(33) CommentsPermalink

ENOUGH ABOUT ME

Tell us something about you.

UPDATE. Highlights:

* “As a child I cut my right thumb off in a dishwashing/telephone-talking accident and had to have it re-attached.”

* “I’m a vegetarian environmentalist.”

* “I’m the only guy I know who burned down a swamp.”

* “For years my toys were spools of thread.”

* “I tasted raccoon meat on Sunday.”

* “My hair turned white when I was in my mid-30s, but I still have all of it.”

* “I attended fourteen grade schools.”

* “One night I got stabbed in the neck during a robbery.”

* “I’m starting my first golf lessons this Sunday in Sydney.”

* “Once, by imitating a bird call, I got a flock of barn swallows to attack a blackbird.”

* “I was baptized in the jungles of Sumatra by missionaries.”

* “I am the most fortunate man alive.”

* “I’m 40 and have never been out of the Eastern time zone.”

* “When I was 16, I had a 12-month secret affair with a 23-year-old friend of the family.”

* “I got stabbed in a fight when I was ten years old.”

UPDATE II. Further revelations:

* “I have a golliwog.”

* “I’ve had half a dozen marriage proposals.”

* “I walked in on a drug deal in a ranger station in Belize involving something like $50,000 in cash.”

* “I admit that hitting my brother at that range with a BB gun involved not a little divine intervention.”

* “Been set on fire by my dad.”

* “I was bitten on the arm by a monkey.”

* “I once watched ‘Monty Python’s Flying Circus’ on TV with Marshall McLuhan.”

* “When I was hitchhiking in Europe I got a lift in a van with a son of the Bader-Meinhoff gang.”

Posted by Tim B. on 09/27/2006 at 01:36 PM
(350) CommentsPermalink

DREAM TEAM

Anne Summers in the SMH:

For a Democratic dream team it’s hard to go past a Gore-Clinton ticket.

Actually, that team might be a dream for the Republicans.

Posted by Tim B. on 09/27/2006 at 01:22 PM
(35) CommentsPermalink

WHITLAM UPDATE

Turns out Margaret Whitlam’s weird attack on Janette Howard dates back to the previous century:

The comments were made seven years ago, Mrs Whitlam said, and the pair had since developed an amicable relationship.

So much for this “new” Whitlam biography Susan Mitchell is flogging. It’s 2,500 days behind events before even going on sale.

Posted by Tim B. on 09/27/2006 at 01:02 PM
(24) CommentsPermalink

PROBABLY PRESBYTERIAN, TOO

The Sydney Morning Herald’s notorious men of no appearance now acquire obvious racial characteristics:

Police are searching for a man described as being of white/European appearance, aged 25 to 30, with a large build and wearing a dark tracksuit and blue baseball cap.

(Via Frankie A. and Andrew M.)

Posted by Tim B. on 09/27/2006 at 12:27 PM
(24) CommentsPermalink

FRANKENJOSH

Cliff Kincaid on a gullible columnist:

New York Times columnist Frank Rich, who is now hawking a book bashing the Bush Administration, has a secret. He was one of those gullible media figures who bought into the phony conspiracy theory that the White House was out to destroy “whistle-blower” Joe Wilson.

In a series of fanciful columns in 2005, Rich repeatedly accused the White House of trying to destroy Joe Wilson and his wife.

Only a series? Ha; amateur! Josh Marshall posted on the Plame non-scandal 231 times from July 2003—99 times in 2005 alone. No wonder poor Josh always looks so tired.

Posted by Tim B. on 09/27/2006 at 12:11 PM
(6) CommentsPermalink

I PLEDGE TO REMAIN HUMBLE

There’s fame, and then there’s the galaxy-sized ultra-fame that comes through being mentioned by the Nikki Osborne Fan Club. Speaking of whom, a Quizmania caller just identified “Napoleon” as an ice-cream flavour.

UPDATE. Another caller believes microwave ovens use “micro machines”. Among the three options from which he could choose was “microwaves”.

Posted by Tim B. on 09/27/2006 at 10:53 AM
(31) CommentsPermalink

LIST UPDATED

Andrew Bolt keeps score:

Let’s now sum up our list of artistic must-nots, based on recent history. We must not:

* draw or publish pictures of Mohammed, however respectful, for fear of causing deadly riots

* make films criticising Islam for fear of having our head nearly sawn off by a furious Islamist a la Theo van Gogh

* tell a joke against a Muslim for fear of having our act banned by the Melbourne Comedy Festival’s director

* preach to our Pentacostal congregation about the danger of Islam’s jihadist preaching for fear of being found guilty of vilifying Muslims and sentenced to run full-page advertisements to tell the world of our guilt

* quote the verdict on Islam of some 14th century Byzantine emperor for fear that a Catholic nun might be murdered, churches in Palestine torched and demands be issued for an apology or violent else

* perform Mozart’s Idomeneo (or, for that matter, his Aduction from the Seraglio, which is set in a harem and features a dumb Muslim guard) for fear that our theatre might be blown up

Hit Andrew’s site for links within the above. Curious thing is, creative types don’t seem in the least bit upset about their new restrictions. They’re a docile species.

UPDATE. The mood seems to have shifted since everyone was frightened by that Motoon nonsense:

German Chancellor Angela Merkel warned on Wednesday against bowing to fears of Islamic violence after a Berlin opera house canceled performances of a Mozart work because of concerns some scenes could enrage Muslims.

“We must take care that we do not retreat out of a fear of potentially violent radicals,” Merkel was quoted as saying in Hanover’s Neue Presse newspaper. “Self-censorship out of fear is not tolerable.”

Posted by Tim B. on 09/27/2006 at 09:41 AM
(42) CommentsPermalink

CONDI’S NEW LOOK

Some heavy-duty photoshopping from Associated Press:

image

The image has since been removed. Spotted and captured by Dylan Kissane; the photograph is actually of 19-year-old Rice College footballer Dale Lloyd, who died Monday.

UPDATE. A correction (and eulogy) from CharlieBravo: “Dale Lloyd went to Rice University (not College). By all accounts a great kid who died following a team workout. As an alumnus of this fine, but tiny, institution, I can tell you that Rice’s football team and coaching staff are very distraught over losing such a fine young man.”

Posted by Tim B. on 09/27/2006 at 08:20 AM
(14) CommentsPermalink

NO PLEASING SOME PEOPLE

You’d think Islamic extremists would welcome an opera featuring severed heads:

A leading German opera house has canceled performances of a Mozart opera because of security fears stirred by a scene that depicts the severed head of the Prophet Muhammad, prompting a storm of protest here about the renunciation of artistic freedom.

The Deutsche Oper in Berlin said it had pulled “Idomeneo” from its fall schedule after the police warned that the staging of the opera could pose an “incalculable risk” to the performers and the audience.

Political and cultural figures throughout Germany condemned the cancellation, which is without precedent here. Some said it recalled the decision of European newspapers not to print satirical cartoons about Muhammad, after their publication in Denmark generated a furor among Muslims ...

Michael Naumann, a former German culture minister, said, “It’s a slap in the face of artistic freedom, by the artists themselves.”

Interestingly, the severed heads of Jesus, Buddha, and Poseidon also feature in the opera. No threats were anticipated from Christians, Buddhists, or Athenians. Related thoughts from James Lileks:

Since it’s difficult to predict what else will enflame the devout, Islam has to be treated with unusual deference, like a 3-year-old child with anger management problems.

But it’s not what we say that truly offends. It’s what we are. The West’s lack of interest in joining the Ummah is an affront in itself, and we broadcast our sins in High Infidelity. If you believed that the West’s apostasy was an affront to God, you’d spend your leisure hours torching straw popes, too ...

In the meantime, we will learn to say less and less about more and more. As the grim cliche has it: If you say Islam isn’t always a religion of peace, the Islamicists will kill you. This doesn’t make them hypocrites, of course. The grave is a very peaceful place.

Speaking of which, let’s pause to remember Sister Leonella Sgorbati. Three people have now been arrested for her murder.

(Via Wayne B.)

UPDATE. Could people please stop referring to the Pope as “ham-fisted”? It’s unbelievably offensive, this concept of a mighty Pontiff crushing all before him with gigantic fists of ham, each wild blow unleashing a spray of pig juice over his prone and helpless enemies. So quit it, before you are subject to reprisals.

Posted by Tim B. on 09/27/2006 at 03:39 AM
(33) CommentsPermalink

MEGABLOCK DEPLOYED

Bovious renders a certain troubling image safe for civilian viewing.

Posted by Tim B. on 09/27/2006 at 03:11 AM
(4) CommentsPermalink

TALL, MANNISH WOMAN LASHES OUT

We all remember Margaret Whitlam’s extensive contributions to Australian public life. There was ... well, something. And possibly one or two other things. All of which leaves her entitled to criticise Janette Howard:

Former first lady Margaret Whitlam has criticised Prime Minister John Howard’s wife Janette for not doing enough for the community.

Mrs Whitlam, whose husband Gough was prime minister from 1972 to 1975, says Mrs Howard has no sense of humour and should not still be holding hands with her husband in public.

“For God’s sake, they’ve been married for over 30 years!” Mrs Whitlam says in a new biography to be published next week.

No holding hands? If you say so, Mullah Margaret.

In extracts from the biography, published in The Bulletin magazine today, Mrs Whitlam says Mrs Howard does not do enough charity work or public appearances.

“She is useless in terms of how little she really gives the community,” Mrs Whitlam is quoted as saying.

“She doesn’t even go to the old people’s homes that Howard visits. The only thing she goes to is big public things.

“There’s Howard shaking hands and kissing old ladies in retirement homes. If you’ve got a wife, your wife should be there, too.”

But then they might hold hands. It’s a protocol nightmare for the First Lady.

“You have certain obligations to make the most of the position, to accept invitations, to support charitable causes, to let yourself be known to the people of Australia.

“I mean, people want to see you. What is she hiding?”

Mrs Whitlam questioned what else Mrs Howard had to do.

“What on earth does she do with her time?” she says in the biography, by Susan Mitchell.

According to the article, Mrs Howard’s recent engagements included a fundraiser for a youth charity last Friday, a private lunch in support of cancer research organisation Centenary Institute on Monday, and a dinner hosted by the National Breast Cancer Foundation on Tuesday.

UPDATE: “Prime Minister John Howard says he will continue to hold hands with his wife, Janette, despite criticism by Margaret Whitlam.”

(Via Hal G.P. Colebatch)

Posted by Tim B. on 09/27/2006 at 12:03 AM
(97) CommentsPermalink

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

BOOKS LOCATED ON BOOKSHELVES

Leftoid pundit Paul Street is outraged by suggestions that Noam Chomsky’s books are largely unread:

The notion that nobody finishes Chomsky’s books is, of course, absurd. I am among countless others who rarely put Chomsky’s studies anywhere near a coffee table; his books are located front and center in our bookshelves, in the privileged places you set aside for works you will frequently reference and cite.

I’m guessing Paul, what with all his Chomsky referencing and citing, doesn’t receive too many return house guests. Speaking of Noam, here’s Mark Steyn on recent events at the UN:

Cut to President Ahmadinejad’s address ... His speech was mostly a lot of run-of-the-mill kook boilerplate—the U.N. is a stooge of the Great Satan (if only), America started the Israel-Hezbollah war (whatever)—but he wound up the usual shtick with a prayer for the return of the Twelfth Imam, the so-called “Hidden Imam”—or, as the Iranian president put it: “the perfect, righteous human being and the real savior who has been promised to all peoples and who will establish justice, peace and brotherhood on the planet.”

This isn’t just some cockamamie pie-in-the-sky deal. Last year, Ahmadinejad told the Indian foreign minister that everything would be hunky-dory in two years’ time, which the minister took to mean when Iran’s nukes would be ready to fly. But, as the president went on to explain, that’s apparently the Twelfth Imam’s ETA.

The Twelfth Imam? Billy Birmingham should sue.

UPDATE. Wronwright asks:

Well if Hidden Boy is in a seminary, just WTF is in my basement?

(Long-running comments in-joke. If you’ve just joined us, you have no hope of ever catching up.)

Posted by Tim B. on 09/26/2006 at 02:00 PM
(72) CommentsPermalink

COLA CONTROLLED; NEXT, PIZZA

Tehran television exposes the evil cola scams of those crafty Jews:

The Zionists are the largest shareholders in the world’s drink manufacturers. They make hundreds of thousands of billions of dollars from this annually. This way, they export their colonialist schemes with this product, at no additional cost.

Take, for example, the Pepsi drink. Do you know what Pepsi stands for? ‘Pay Each Penny Save Israel.’

Among other companies implicated in worldwide Jewishness: Coca Cola, Sara Lee, Marks & Spencer, Nestle, Intel, McDonald’s, Marlboro, Disney, Timberland, Revlon, Hugo Boss, Calvin Klein, Tommy Hilfiger, L’Oreal, and Garnier. How do Jews find the time for all this globey domination? Self-confessed Jew Max Friedman admits:

It’s really hard ruling the world, starting wars, raping, pillaging and plundering, without enough sleep. Perhaps tomorrow I’ll take over the weather. Then my enemies can accuse me of global warming, too. Why not?

The waters of the Atlantic Coast beaches this summer were too cold to do much swimming, so I’ve really got to do something about warming them up. Then we Jews can control the rental of beach chairs, umbrellas and the sand, while secretly taking over control of Thrasher’s fries and Grotto’s pizza. Now, that will really show our critics that we are serious about ruling the world. He who controls french fries and pizza rules!

UPDATE. Dan Lewis: “I always thought it was Pay Each Penny, Screw Iran!”

UPDATE II. Steve Skubinna: “So what does ‘Iran’ mean? Israel Rules All Nations?”

Posted by Tim B. on 09/26/2006 at 01:55 PM
(69) CommentsPermalink

CEASE HOARDING YOUR BARN OWLS

Britain is running out of barn owls. If you have any spare barn owls, please FedEx them to Britain.

Posted by Tim B. on 09/26/2006 at 01:29 PM
(26) CommentsPermalink
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