The mouse wants you to make a sign that hates that one boat over there.Hundreds of protesters waved signs and flags and stuff at the Port of Oakland on Sunday because an Israeli cargo ship was coming in and this was the most important way they could protest Israel for some reason. Longshoremen refused to cross the “picket line” of weirdos because apparently it had some union backing. In San Francisco, remember, “union members” are not your usual blue-collar folks, they’re hippie-plumbers and hippie-electrical-workers and hippie-Teamsters.

“Our objective was to boycott this ship for 24 hours, and we succeeded in doing that,” said Richard Becker, with the ANSWER Coalition, one of the groups that organized the protest.

This makes things all the more confusing for Israel. So these people got REALLY MAD at a single random cargo ship that came from Israel, then quickly become best friends with it and let it unload its challah French toast? Why didn’t they try to board it and murder everyone? Shouldn’t they have at least shot a few rounds into the challah French toast or menacingly poured maple syrup on its crew?

Israel must have been confused because it eased up some of its land blockade on Gaza while keeping its naval blockade going. So now Gaza will be able to get some of its much needed food and medical supplies and such, which is very generous of Israel, somewhat allowing them the basic necessities of existence now. Hopefully those food supplies include challah French toast, which is the best kind of French toast, and maybe if Palestinians tried that and Israelis ate more falafel they wouldn’t hate each other and kill each other so much?

The U.S. responded to this partial blockade easing with a OH MY GOD, YOU ARE SO GREAT ISRAEL, WE LOVE YOU 100% AGAIN. And now the pressure has been lifted off the Obama administration by American Israeltards who were pissed that the U.S. was almost sorta not-quite forthrightly OH YOU WANT TO SHOOT RANDOM PEOPLE ON A DINKY BOAT, THAT’S COOL, ISRAEL recently.

So now America and Israel can team up to shoot at Iran with boats, some random Arabic newspaper says. [San Francisco Chronicle/New York Times]

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  1. San Franciscans have refined the art of protesting into pure, golden kitsch, like the time I tried to find some Israeli couscous at Rainbow Market and was told the store refused to carry Israeli products as a protest against Israel’s occupation of Palestine (I wish I was not making this up).

    Anyway: Free Oaktown!

  2. …the International Longshore and Warehouse Union (ILWU) required their longshoremen to work no longer than 35 hours a week. Furthermore, it was cited that the average income for an Oakland longshoreman was between $100,000-$120,000, with many senior employees earning $160,-190,000.

    You can afford to be radical at those salaries.

  3. I hope you Oaklanders are proud of yourselves — do you know how many people suffering under the evil eye died today because you held up much-needed supplies of Kabbalah water? Sure, it’s all just a game to you, but we Americans take our talismans and charms seriously.

  4. [re=603140]One Yield Regular[/re]: what exactly is wrong with boycotting Israel for their inhumane treatment of Palestinians and particularly Gazans? I certainly would think twice before buying anything from Israel, would choose a product made elsewhere given a choice.

  5. [re=603120]Judas Peckerwood[/re]:
    [re=603139]Sara Benincasa[/re]:
    That challah FREEDOM toast you socialist Nazis huggers.

  6. Look, can we get down to it?

    Let’s put the Israeli prime minister at one end of the field, the Palestinian president at the other, and let them choose five Pokemon and be done with it.

    Seriously, this is getting that childish, but at least in my solution, no one dies!

  7. Um, falafel is practically the Israeli national food. Seriously. If they ate more of it, they wouldn’t have time to kill Palestinians… Oh wait, I see what you did there for peace in the Middle East!

  8. [re=603165]actor212[/re]: Seriously, this is getting that childish, but at least in my solution, no one dies!

    You’re leaving out the main point of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. AND THAT WON’T DO, SIR.

    Now, if you had those Pokemons armed with tanks and rockets and suicide bomb vests and settlements and nukes …..

  9. This is outrageous! Next thing you know, these hippies will block unloading of goods from the country of the Vatican! When will it stop!

  10. West Coast shipping companies have for years written into their budgets losses for day-long work stoppages to protest the particular evil foreign regime of the day.

  11. [re=603151]Way Cool Larry[/re]: When one’s outrage devolves to the level of refusing to stock couscous in a food co-op, 95% of whose clients consist of members of the choir, I truly think one has moved beyond effective action into the realm of kitsch. But I’m willing to be proven wrong. If Rainbow Market’s refusal to carry Osem Brand Unique Mediterranean Toasted Pasta Specialty (still available at fine markets everywhere) results in Israel’s improving the lives of Palestinians, then I’ll be happy to buy all my wheat germ, bulk soy products, hemp-flakes and Dr. Bronner’s soap there.

  12. I was listening to Pacifica over the weekend and they were broadcasting [live, I think?] someone speaking at the port of Oakland blockade/rally thing. The guy on the microphone was like “THIS IS A FIRST IN U.S. LABOR HISTORY… THIS WILL BE THE SHOT HEARD ROUND THE WORLD.” I was really curious about that last bit. They seemed to emphasize several times that this would be an example to the entire world and alter the debate. Two days later and the only coverage I’ve seen of it anywhere has been this vaguely dismissive Wonkette post. Google News doesn’t list it on the first page on searches for either “Israel” or “Israeli”. Google News also still flags Wonkette as “satire” (technically at some point they upgraded Wonkette to “(satire) (blog)”.

  13. American longshoremen are a joke. The Swedes (or Swiss or some other Yurp-peon country that starts with ‘S’) refused to unload a Jew boat for nine days. That’s nine times tougher than the Muricans.

  14. [re=603241]mcc[/re]: Being from the Bay Area, I can help you with the Reality to Progressive Translation- “shot heard round the world” is progressive for “something everyone on my message board is talking about and soon to be seen in my as yet untitled documentary.” See, we here tend to believe that every political protest this area stages every second and fourth Thursday is being watched with anticipation by radicals around the world for a sign on how to proceed with the revolution, something proven time and time again by all the times Mumia has been freed over the years.

  15. HFA: That sounds about right. And yet the fascinating thing is, the political organizing I’ve seen around here has been much more grounded and practically oriented than almost anything I’ve encountered in the blogosphere!

  16. [re=603167]populucious[/re]: You beat me to it! There’s always a “Free Mumia” sign somewhere at an A.N.S.W.E.R. Rally. They could be advocating for the FOP and there would be some dude with a “Free Mumia” sign.

    Also, they always have a drum circle. TELL ME THERE WAS A DRUM CIRCLE!!!

  17. From what I have seen down here in L.A. the Israelis import fine women and draft dodging douchbags. The douchbags speed around in expensive German cars smoking cigarettes while constantly on their unlocked I Phones. They are easily mistaken for Russian or Armenian douchbags who also drive nothing but expensive German cars. MTV could do a whole series on these guys, and it would look a lot like “Jersey Shore.”

  18. [re=603331]FormerDCite[/re]: Damn straight about the women. A little hard to train, high strung and with a distinctive yap, but gimme that yeminite hole!

  19. [re=603223]Manos: Hands of Fate[/re]: Oh, yes. Forty seven states and the Soviet of Washington. (State, that is. Although replace “Tacoma” with “Oakland” and it’s all good.

  20. Get Rahm Emmanual’s father on this. He and his Irgun buddies will machine gun and bomb those facist, anti-semitic American citizens for daring to express their opinions about Israel human rights violations.

    Or even worse, make them take a bath.

  21. ANY AND ALL CRITICISM OF ISRAEL IS ANTI-SEMITIC IN EFFECT IF NOT INTENT. Jews = Israel, except when they don’t. Doesn’t anybody read Dershowitz’s memos?

  22. [re=603138]Way Cool Larry[/re]: Arabs are semites. Anti-semitism has several varieties and insane Arab hatred is the most popular one, ca. 2010.

  23. [re=603138]Way Cool Larry[/re]: Depends. Are you asking if it’s mainstream cool, or indie cool? Because this is clearly too well known to be indie cool anymore. I suppose I’m off to embrace Bibi, again.

  24. I would like to see Netanyahu and the leader of Hamas pitted against each other in a stadium duel like the one in Robot Jox. Two machines–two men–too wild. At the end, after crushing innocent bystanders, they realize “we can both live.”

  25. The longshoremen, besides making bank, get to take up to one shift off per month with pay for “union business”. For the shipping companies, this is part of overhead/cost of doing business. Bay Area folks may remember a big “one day strike/protest” hoohah a year-plus back, but it was really just one of their Union Business Days where everyone knew there would be no ops that shift.

    But, yeah, the union has been very very good to them, so no crossing picket lines.

    Ship planners, OTOH, are non-unionized and were no doubt pestering my ex-cow-orkers as usual.

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