gifzette daily briefing

The War Against the Machines Unfolding in Iraqi Airspace

This is a photo of Australian Open winner Novak Djokovic with all of his clothes on.NEW YORK—We left you on Friday with some rather unsettling developments in the coming War Against the Machines, and we’re afraid to report there’s more bad news on that front today: the US military apparently left behind some drones during its “withdrawal” from Iraq last December—and the Iraqi people are not happy about this! (something something nobody could have predicted.) The State Department has contracted a “small fleet” of drones to serve as part of a security detail for the various American diplomats still remaining in Iraq. “The State Department drones,” reports the Times, “carry no weapons and… are much smaller than armed drones, with wingspans as short as 18 inches, compared with 55 feet for the Predators.” Catch that? “Much much smaller than armed drones”—as if this is supposed to comfort us! No, sorry, this is even more terrifying. Because, seriously, think about it: if those 55-foot Predators are basically like the Decepticons of the War Against the Machines, then these little foot-and-a-half long guys are like that one miniature Transformer jobber that turned himself into a boombox and hacked Air Force One. Well! Happy Monday, everyone: we all live in a Michael Bay movie now.

Oof, so here is another scary thing: after Public Citizen issued a call last week to see Bank of America broken up, the Times reports some ugly numbers today on the exposure of various banks to troubled European debt. And things don’t look good for Bank of America! Here is a handy little chart featuring a series of taupe-colored concentric circles of differing areas showing just how little Bank of America has hedged its debt exposure with CDS purchases compared to its competitors (another chart is on the way, we’re confident, showing just how many billions in insurer bailouts the American taxpayer will be on the hook for when these CDS calls come in).

So what could possibly be worse than the regular reminder of the truly staggering depths of our friends’ and family members’ ignorance that we’re afforded every time we log onto Facebook and discover that one of them has decided to form something vaguely resembling a political opinion? Well, seeing that opinion turn up on a giant billboard, probably. And that’s exactly what’s happening: three years after the cancellation of “Total Request Live,” democracy is making a triumphant return to Times Square, where Facebook users’ positions on nine major issues will take over the Thomson Reuters and Nasdaq billboards from now until November.

Ooh, so this is good: Joe Scarborough hasn’t been able to shut up all morning about a story in the Sunday Times in which Romney’s advisers heap all sorts of credit on themselves for reviving the flagging Romney campaign, and we’re hearing reports from the Twitter that Mitt’s on “The Today Show” saying “you can expect advisers to think that the work of advisers is very, very important.” Heh! So processy!

So a big victory today in one of the more important battlegrounds in the now decade-long war between America and Evil, as a Pennsylvania school district has levied a ban against the wearing of Ugg boots to class (more like Ughhhhh, right???). Turns out that the greatest fashion footwear disaster the world has ever seen since Crocs Vibram Five Fingers has been doubling as a convenient vessel for contraband (read: cellphones), and now the oppressed youngs of this small Pennsylvania town are learning a thing or two about political organization: the seventh- and eighth-graders of Pottstown Middle School are planning an Ugg-in.

Now, seeing as this is technically a “news round-up,” we will make only passing mention to the “news” that Allen West is a crazy person.

Oh, and one other thing: here is a very good opinion piece from Neil Gabler in Politico that you should definitely read.


What Others Are Reading

Hola wonkerados.

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  1. Chillwillard

    "Happy Monday, everyone: we all live in a Michael Bay movie now."

    Unless that means we get to bang Megan Fox, it sound like it's going to be one terrible fucking week…

      1. Negropolis

        Actually, the downside to banging Meghan Fox is that she eats the heads of her lovers after sex. Yes, all of them, Katie.

      1. V572 the Merciless

        'Splosions are the one thing movie theaters can do better than your home flatscreen. Well, maybe car chases. If Hollywood dies the only thing left to watch will be "Treme" on HBO.

  2. Texan_Bulldog

    But, did Neil Gabler win the day? The words "good" and "Politico" should never be in the same sentence.

    1. freakishlywrong

      And panties are being bunched AND wadded in the comments over there. "Independents" ie: Paultards are clutching something, and it ain't pearls.

      1. Texan_Bulldog

        Well, hell. You made me click over there & read the article/comments. Ron must have unleashed his flying monkeys to protect his honor.

    2. Rotundo_

      They're just a shittin' bricks at the thought that someone might mention that saying that people should be left to their own fates (at the debate, left to die) and that asking people who have had great success at the expense of their countrymen to put a little back in the kitty so that the unemployed and destitute aren't as completely miserable as they can be is socialism, might be dishonest and even amoral as judged by the bible so many of them tote around piously. The truth stings when it gets thrown back in their faces.

      1. GOPCrusher

        Read a Paultard post on Yahoo comments this AM which was quite succinct. "This country is made up of parasitic socialists and those that honor the Constitution."
        USA! FUCK YEAH!

  3. comrad_darkness

    My dream is coming true! BofA going bankrupt while the douchebag teabaggers have congress by their wimpy little reactionary balls. Yay.

    Added: Why the f*ck is a CDS still treated like insurance. There is zero capital requirement to back it. Jesus Christ on a piece of accounting software, didn't these dipshits learn f*cking anything during the meltdown??

          1. comrad_darkness

            I'll be there as soon as I unload these illegals. And by illegals, I mean bank presidents and board members.

    1. MissTaken

      CDS's are now (and for the last several years) purely the equivalent of buying insurance on the douchebag down the street's motorcycle expecting him to get drunk and crash it into a telephone pole within the next several months. This is why you must prove you either own or have a loan out on an auto you get insurance on. You'd think they could figure this out for CDS on debt instruments, but oh no!

          1. comrad_darkness

            I think you mean Waldorf and Statler, but I would love to see a guest fill-in by Wallace and Grommet.

            "What do you think he meant by putting himself inside a cannon, Grommet? Oh my my my, that really must hurt. Better inventing next time, Gonzo!"

          2. Biff

            zomg, you are correct! Not having grown up on the Muppets and not having any kids, I'm maybe not as conversant as I could be on all things Muppet.

        1. Chichikovovich

          Likewise – whenever I'm at home or in France and I want to order a slice of pizza or ask for a piece of bread, sometimes I would think "Aw crap, I've been in the 'States too long. What the câlisse is the word for slice?" But now I can always remember – "Oh, yeah: tranche".

          So as far as I can see, these CDS's have brought me nothing but good.

          1. paris biltong

            A bit obsolete. I used to say "une tranche de gâteau" but now everybody says "une part". "Tranche" is really only used for bread (and sometimes for loans).

          2. Chichikovovich

            Thanks that's 100% useful information right there. – it's important to keep up with French-French patterns, since Parisians often treat French Canadians with "our little cousins are so cute" condescension, and so I try to avoid tipoff phrases even though I'm a tête-carré. "Tranche" is still used for pizza where I grew up, but then when they're speaking local dialect they still use phrases and pronunciations from Molière's time. (icitte = ici, pis = et, piasse (=piastre) = dollar, though the last one seems to be dying out)

          3. paris biltong

            You ARE cute, linguistically speaking. Just try not to say "verge" when you mean "yard" or "mètre" as it has a whole other meaning.

          4. Chichikovovich

            Thanks for the warning. I've already learned (not the hard way, happily) that when French-French speakers ask me to see pictures of “les gosses”, they aren't asking for photos of my testicles.—

          5. comrad_darkness

            It's when the shop clerk just turns their back on you that you know you are totally rocking the tourist French. By the way, I've had nothing but socially well-adjusted service everywhere in the rest of France. Paris is like an asylum with, well, wait it does have a wall…

          6. DrOzarkZ.Hellbender

            My high school French teacher told us she'd seen a sign in a shop in Paris that said (in English) "American High School French Spoken Here."

          7. doloras

            You realise of course that using câlisse as a swearword marks you out from French-French speakers better than anything else…

          8. Chichikovovich

            Yep. That's why I never use it in France unless I have some reason to come out of the closet.—

      1. Guppy

        Jesus fucking Christ, I could be rich! Florida doesn't even have helmet laws!

        I can still buy life insurance on (former) employees, right?

          1. comrad_darkness

            Lol. You know the way this thing is structured. That may very well be part of their actuarial calculations.

      2. SorosBot

        It's good to have someone who can explain these complicated financial instruments to us laymen in a way we can understand. Also hot.

    1. Pithaughn

      Sheesh, when I was in 6th grade (1970) we walked out to protest the rule that girls could not wear pants. The rule that they could be ordered to sit on their knees in the vice principals office to verify skirt length was another controversial topic. In retrospect, we came to realize the school was for the most part administered by some fairly sadistic people.

  4. BaldarTFlagass

    One of the reasons I no longer do that FaceSpace thing is because it was so depressing to see how many of my "friends" were total idiots.

    1. Chichikovovich

      I'm lucky that none of my friends who are idiots do Facebook, or (more likely) they regard me as such a killjoy that they didn't want to friend me. But several friends of friends kept leaping into conversation threads. I finally quit when a Christian minister wingnut friend of a friend argued against government aid to the poor on the grounds that it it made it more difficult for churches to use food aid and other charities to coerce desperate people into attending church and listening to Christian propaganda. [No joke – that was the argument, though of course he expressed it in a nicer sounding way.]

      1. comrad_darkness

        Also, THIS. I've seen this argument applied to the wars in the middle east too. What a bunch of sociopaths. And, yeah, it's not a crusade, right. Crusade, jihad, potato, potatoe.

      2. Fare la Volpe

        I've been very lucky to avoid all those ingrates, since apparently my social circle turned out to be very well educated and liberal as a consequence. The only exceptions are the chronic virgins I befriended in high school who post long ranting screeds about "Men's Rights" and the ways feminists are taking away all that male privilege they never had opportunity to savor.

        Pity the straight white male, for truly he is nature's most oppressed.

        1. SorosBot

          Oh noes, the womens are getting treated as equals, and they don't want to sleep with drooling entitled misogynist assholes! Pity the poor straight white men indeed.

        2. Chichikovovich

          I'm lucky in that regard, since anyone I know from high school is more or less left wing. The only genuine conservative from my youth that I spend time with is my dad, and he a) doesn't use Facebook b) is a Canadian-style conservative, which means he is 100% in favor of universal health care, a social safety net, old age pensions, separation of church and state (in fact, he's energetically in favor of it, since the main breach of the church-state barrier in Ontario is government funding of Catholic schools, due to an agreement going back 100 years that is now the politically untouchable status quo) and full rights for gay Canadians including marriage. His conservatism manifests mostly in the facts that he wishes taxes were lower, and he is mad as hell that in his 40s he had to learn some French for his job, when nobody required it in his day.

      3. BerkeleyBear

        Between that sort of "logic" (which I learned from some too close for comfort dealings with religious NGOs and some nasty stories about Mother Theresa) and Jon Stewart's recent riff on how Congress and big business collaborate to keep laws and the tax code as complex as possible because it creates more space for them to continue the cycle of influence peddling, I'm left to ponder what can I believe in?

        I know, I know, puppy dogs and the laughter of children – only puppies crap on the floor and my kids are just as often as not laughing at me cleaning up dog crap.

    2. comrad_darkness

      See, this is your problem. For those of us with no friends, realizing this every day is just gravy.

    3. Biff

      I was a very late adopter of the facebook, and enthusiastically accepted friend requests from wimmins I knew from a lifetime ago. I was quickly disillusioned and appalled that so many former hippie chicks had gone full retard and become followers of brother glenn beck. With sadness, I dumped them, and am contemplating shutting down the whole damned mess.

      edit: character map is now my best friend!

    4. Rotundo_

      Never went there, never will. I want to maintain the illusion that most folks are like those around here, and not like Red State or Breitbart's virtual circle jerk. Consider it to be the technological equivalent of plugging both my ears and going "LA LA LA" really loudly around my former classmates and some relatives. I may not be in touch with these people, but we are both better off.

  5. freakishlywrong

    Sorry, what? I'm still reeling at the awfulness of what used to be Sunday political programming, or what we called "Old men talking". It's insufferable; a carnival of wingnut talking points and bloviating assholes to disgorge them.
    And again, David Gregory, with the "make the middle class pay", while interrupting and talking over David Axlerod, (which, with the "uhs", I can sorta see).

  6. HempDogbane

    After years of looking up at 6 foot-wide DroneNutz, the Iraqis should be grateful for those little ones overhead.

  7. joobajooba

    Re that Politico column. Is this why you liked it? :
    "Just imagine how far shame might have gone at the infancy of Nazi Germany."

    You know who else felt shame in the infancy of Nazi Germany?

    1. Chichikovovich

      The socialists and communists being fired from their jobs and rounded up by the left-wing socialist communist Nazis?

      1. Chichikovovich

        Oh, man, I remember when I first saw that scene – I was about 12 yrs, watching it on TV, and each successive jolt caught me completely off guard. Still get shivers remembering it.

        'Course, now I have enough ironic distance to imagine the analogous situation with myself at 2:40 in the Michael York position and some establishment Republican as Helmut Berger, watching a teabagger rally for the non-Romney du jour.

    2. comrad_darkness

      I was going to say Prescott Bush, but then I remembered that the Bush family is immune from shame.

    3. Nothingisamiss

      My hairdresser, who insists that her family, a prosperous business and land owning family during the last 100 years of German history, hated Hitler? (Although this did not seem to impact their business dealings at all during the '30s and 40's.)

      Shame, that's what they felt. Not nationalistic.

  8. Trannysurprise

    So we pull out of Iraq and stop killing all the browns and laser blasting their towns and they still bitch.

    You just can't please some people.

    1. BaldarTFlagass

      I would take Allen West a lot more seriously if he wore his hair in a full blown afro instead of the high-top fade.

      Just kidding, no I wouldn't.

  9. Chichikovovich

    "the now decade-long war between America and Evil"

    Is that like the five year war between Italy and Germany, 1939 – 1944?

    1. SayItWithWookies

      Those don't look so horrible — but what I want to know is, do they make different kinds according to whether one's second toe is longer or shorter than the big toe?

      1. Mumbletypeg

        Well… ex-Mumbletycompanion was so excited to get his pair, as I recall; then came the mesh panels that trapped dirt & sand; and tears in the lining that Mumbletypeg struggled to stitch securely shut. That said, from what I remember as he chatted up the vendor' outfit staff, they can accommodate their shoes to most any foot shape.

    2. SorosBot

      I have a friend who actually has a pair of those; when he actually walked into the bar wearing those things, the rest of us could not stop laughing at him for quite some time. He hasn't shown up in them since.

  10. Chet Kincaid

    NFL Star Plaxico Burress was involved in an incident at a New York Night Club this weekend in which one of the drones in his entourage shot him in the ass.

    1. comrad_darkness

      Must I choose?

      Also, Italian Futbol. Doesn't get more fixed than that.

      Added: Well, since Tuđman left the presidency of Croatia, that is.

  11. Baconzgood

    YES! Ban Ugg boots. I was on the Metro on Sat and there were 6 13 year olds all wearing fleese jackets, dark blue jeans, and Ugg Boots. They were annoying as hell and I blame the Ugg boots more than anything.

    1. MissTaken

      One of my coworkers wears Uggs into the office each morning. She sucks harder than a Dyson vacuum and I'm sure it's because of the Uggs.

      1. Baconzgood

        I call it Ugg Syndrome and there is no cure yet. Please pledge any ammount you can to buy these wretched people Etnies.

      2. SorosBot

        You know how hard she sucks? Hm, seems her past dalliances have been a bit indiscreet about their encounters.

        1. MissTaken

          Eew! The thought of knowing how hard she actually sucks is disgusting. She's lamer than lame and I cannot bring myself to think about her life outside these walls. Icky!

      3. Fare la Volpe

        Does she also sip soy lattes, read OK! magazine, and bitch about the lack of good yoga studios in her neighborhood?

        1. MissTaken

          She's so lame that sipping soy lattes and reading OK! mag would bring her non-sucky status up several notches.

    2. Texan_Bulldog

      (Timidly raises hand) I admit to having a pair of Uggs, but I only wear them when it is VERY, VERY cold and/or raining. Which, living in Austin, is about twice a year.

      1. MissTaken

        Honestly, I own a pair, too, but I've never worn them outside of my apartment. I don't understand women who wear them thinking they look attractive.

    3. BerkeleyBear

      Bad news – male model and part time sports player Tom Brady gave a pair to every one of his Patriot teammates (subsidized by the Ugg people, of course) so expect to see a week of stories about them as a new craze for 300 pound men.

    1. Chichikovovich

      Well, I must be the coolest of the cool, since I bypassed both the "trendy" and "prole" phases and rocketed directly to "What the hell are Ugg boots?" stage.

    2. prommie

      Uggs have gone from trendy to yesterday, not so much prole, but thats only in NY and among fashionistas, I remember wearing them 25 years ago, they were popular among surfers, decades before being "discovered."

  12. Steverino247

    I noticed how the Paultards attacked almost immediately. In response, here's a tidbit from Saturday's Doonesbury, a slight modification of which that should be imprinted on the inside cover of all Ayn Rand books from now on and tattooed on the foreheads of Paultards to further reduce their chances of sexual reproduction:

    "While everyone shares some of your views, very few share them all. The fact is, your philosophy is pure Utopianism. No modern society could function under a Libertarian government, which is why none exists."

  13. prommie

    You know who else was believed to be a repulsive, absurd little troll with no possibility of winning a general election?

    1. DemonicRage

      How could dedicated Wonkette readers ignore the fact that the default answer to all questions in the "You know who else…" mode is the Austrian corporal with the toothbrush mustache?

  14. weej_bain

    ♪♫ If there's a bustle in BOA's hedgefund don't be alarmed now
    It's just a qwik clean for Tim's team…
    They've been buying a stairway to heaven ♫♪

  15. Biel_ze_Bubba

    Yes, let's take political views expressed on the internet by random people and splash them across gigantic illuminated billboards for ten thousand people to read. Because random people who express their politics on the internet are always well-informed and thoughtful — especially the ones who crave an audience of tens of thousands.

    Who could fail to see that this is Very Good Thing?

    1. Loaded_Pants

      I just can't wait for them to quote some of the posts made by my Obama-hating, Jesus-freakin', Bible-misquoting, gun-totin', immigrant-hatin' cousins.

  16. prommie

    I hate to out myself as the world's nerdiest nerd, but, well, I own a drone, and its got a 5-foot wingspan, which is average-ish for a tytpical old school, balsa and fabric, gas powered radio-controlled model airplane. Oh, it doesn't have onboard computers and video and all suchwhat gimcracks, but dammit, its my drone.

      1. prommie

        Oh my friend, you are mistaken, there is nothing more nerdy than gluing those balsa sticks together, gluing on the shrinky-plastic covering, bolting your little engine in there. Total dweeb city. And the fumes from the glue!

        1. Biel_ze_Bubba

          There is one thing just a wee bit nerdier: using tissue paper and dope. Not that newfangled shrinky-plasticy stuff.

          I still have an unopened Guillows kit. A collector's item, if there were only collectors.

        2. Chet Kincaid

          But what about the Flight Simulator Nerds who actually convert their garages into functioning cockpits linked to their computers, scrounging for old airliner parts on the Web? That is some primo Nerd, right there.

          1. Pithaughn

            Or the apartments left behind in Prescott by the Embry Riddle graduates. I assisted a family member moving out. We had to do the move at midnight so that hopefully the landlord would not come snooping around and have him arrested for the "modifications" to the apartment. I am hopeful that the landlord found some Embry Riddle under grads to take over the simulated FAA command center they left behind.

          2. Gunner Asch

            To tell the shameful truth I'm vaguely considering it. X-Plane has a very realistic demo 747 that I got off the runway with my mouse but then I crashed it. If my joystick didn't have some of the control assignments backwards on Google Earth Flight Simulator I'd probably never log off. Flying a little plane between the walls of Hell's Canyon curls up my toes. When my daughter had to be airlifted to Boise with a preemie I got to ride in the front with the pilot and Farewell Bend on the Snake looked just like on GE. I proudly told the pilot I'd flown the route several times (then 'fessed up how.)

          3. Gunner Asch

            In a rare bit of self-awareness, I realize I'm too drifty. Grasshopper mind tends to go SPROING! randomly and frequently.

        3. Biff

          Used to build them with silk, or tissue paper shrunk over the frame with water, then a few coats of lacquer. My favorite old one had a Brownie 4-stroke engine, you had to advance/retard the ignition manually, via a lever right behind the prop. Still got all my fingers.

        1. jus_wonderin

          Yes. You are apparently correct. Instead of landing on my bagel. It landed on my credit card statement.

  17. SorosBot

    Turning over the Times Square billboard to internet nerds might be fun; we could have an election where the top issue is bringing back Firefly.

    1. prommie

      Snappy, I like that. Is that more or less formal than "snazzy?"

      I can't think of anything more dismal than an "official" "social event."

    1. Biel_ze_Bubba

      Before an audience of thousands of New Yorkers and white-bread teabagging tourists from deepest Pennsyltucky, all crammed together. What could possibly go wrong?

  18. Fare la Volpe

    Yeah, facebook created a new page layout that prioritizes, above all else, your photo albums – you know, the things that you care a load about but absolutely no one else gives a damn about?

    1. SorosBot

      Hey now, they're useful for checking out if old crushes are still fap-worthy or if they've ballooned up over the years.

      1. Loaded_Pants

        All my old crushes ballooned up. The hottest guy from my HS seems to have went on a 20 year-Doritos-eating, beer-drinking binge.

    2. MissTaken

      Are you implying that people don't want to see pictures of me drinking champagne straight from a bottle in vegas?

  19. chascates

    On the one hand I'm glad that there is still something manufactured in America; on the other hand I realize soon the skies will be buzzing when we all have our personal 'watchers'!

  20. paris biltong

    One thing I learned this weekend is that I'd much rather watch Djokovic against Nadal than Romney against Gingrich.

  21. TheMightyHaltor

    Romney's advisors fist-pumping about leading the GOP primary is like me fist-pumping after beating Stephen Hawking in a 100m race.

    1. paris biltong

      It is a little-known linguistic fact that, in Sweden, "gamla galosh" (literally "old galosh") is the approximate equivalent of "old buddy").

  22. prommie

    I was hopeful, for a second, when I first heard about that massive fiery pileup on Interstate 75 in Florida, apparently car after car just followed one after another into the disaster, and I thought to myself "that sounds so like Republicans," but alas, Newt and Mitt were nowhere nearby.

  23. V572 the Merciless

    The Gobbler:

    Over the past 40 years, as conservatives have complained, this nation has undergone a moral revolution. It’s just not the one they think. They bemoan greater tolerance for homosexuality; loosened sexual strictures; and overall sexualization of the culture, the coarsened language, provocative dress and a general lack of discipline. But gay rights aside…

    Yes, the gays did it all! Hahahahaha

    1. paris biltong

      Thanks to Gabler, I now understand what went wrong. Instead of "Workers of the world, unite" Marx should have written "Capitalists of the world, shame on you."

  24. Blueb4sunrise

    Anyone heard from cheetojeebus? The Cheesy One was threatening a massacre if there was another ___________ post.

  25. V572 the Merciless

    All of what you said, except kids should wear ball hats with the brim forward. There have to be some standards.

  26. BaldarTFlagass

    I don't know why the Iraqis are so pissed off about the drones. I mean, the drones are there to help! If Little Iqbal falls down a well, the drone will see it and notify the authorities and they will come and rescue him! It's like having Lassie, except with wings!

  27. prommie

    Speaking of republicans, legislatures all over the US are following Wonkette's lead and banning the "R-word." My state and several others have amended their statutes to remove the word "retarded" and replace it with "developmentally disabled." I was surprised to read, though, that back in the 30s, when "retarded" came into use, it was adopted as a "scientific," and more sensitive, less insulting term than such terms as "idiot," "imbecile," and "feeble-minded." Now we are outlawing the old polite euphemism in favor of a newer polite euphemism. But this just made me think, how long before the new term becomes an insult?
    Therefore, I propose a final solution to the problem of insulted short-bus passengers. I propose we replace the "R-word" with "genius." The ultimate in social promotion/grade inflation! Trig the special little angel, he is a genius!

    1. V572 the Merciless

      As ni66er was replaced by Negro, then black, then African-American. All the old perjoratives like "idiot" and "moron" used to have "scientific" definitions as well, based on IQ score or some such horseshit.

    2. Biel_ze_Bubba

      State legislators are taking action only because everyone is calling them re†arded. Fuck 'em … the word "imbecile" does nicely.

  28. barto

    So it's just now dawning on Neal Gabler that Republican's are truly mean-spirited bastards and not just bastards? Huh, some epiphany there.

  29. SayItWithWookies

    I must've missed that "good opinion piece" from Neil Gabler, 'cause all I read was the typical whiny Republican thingy about how we're not ashamed of ourselves anymore, which is a perennial trope of theirs.

    And why do conservatives blame lack of shame for all their most egregious behavior? Because they can't seem to get it through their Cro-Magnon cranii that not everybody's morals are the same — that some people are actually proud of espousing heartless draconian hateful nonsense because they fetishize an absolutist and legalistic form of morality (i.e. the law is always morally right, regardless of what the law says) rather than make an attempt to derive their morality from, say, a consistent set of basic principles.

    When morality springs from an entire set of "because I said so" laws that may or may not have any kind of outward consistency, it's possible to be proud of actions that are completely underivable from someone's stated original moral precepts — or more so, I would imagine, that if someone starts with, say, the Enlightenment humanist principles that inform the Constitution.

    This is why idiots like Eric Cantor can shamelessly boast of their holding back disaster aid for a stricken town unless there are budgetary offsets in the bill authorizing such aid — he sees his pledge to Grover Norquist and his pledge to uphold the Constitution as some way morally on the same level, rather than one having a strategic basis and the other being a mere tactic which deserves to be superseded when it inflicts harm upon America's citizens for no apparent reason.

    The Norquist Republicans clearly fetishize one small rule rather than understand its place (if there is one) within the moral precepts our government was formed under. It's not because they lack shame — it's because they have an entirely different set of moral principles than the Constitution does.

  30. owhatever

    State Department drones. Let's give some of those buzz babies for the EPA and really scare the rednecks. And, heh, the ATF.

  31. ttommyunger

    Heh, heh. Little-known fact (among the moran set): those itty-bitty drones are in touch with their larger (armed) counterparts and the whole area is just a joystick move away from total destruction from above. Have a nice day!

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