ARC's 1st Law: As a "progressive" online discussion grows longer, the probability of a nefarious reference to Karl Rove approaches one

Thursday, August 24, 2006

Sy Hersch: Conspiratorial Kapo

At least, that's what he's become since W. was elected in 2000. I was listening to Allman & Smash on 97.1 FMTalk here in St Louis this morning and they were discussing this "news" article by Seymour Hersch in the New Yorker. The focus of the discussion was why Hersch felt no obligation to name his sources - who were essentially providing fodder to the conspiratorial claim that the Zionists run the world and are in a cabal with the US government in the Middle East. Anyway, here are the important bits from the story:

WATCHING LEBANON
by SEYMOUR M. HERSH
Washington’s interests in Israel’s war.
Issue of 2006-08-21
Posted 2006-08-14

In the days after Hezbollah crossed from Lebanon into Israel, on July 12th, to kidnap two soldiers, triggering an Israeli air attack on Lebanon and a full-scale war, the Bush Administration seemed strangely passive. “It’s a moment of clarification,” President George W. Bush said at the G-8 summit, in St. Petersburg, on July 16th. “It’s now become clear why we don’t have peace in the Middle East.” He described the relationship between Hezbollah and its supporters in Iran and Syria as one of the “root causes of instability,” and subsequently said that it was up to those countries to end the crisis. Two days later, despite calls from several governments for the United States to take the lead in negotiations to end the fighting, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said that a ceasefire should be put off until “the conditions are conducive.”

The Bush Administration, however, was closely involved in the planning of Israel’s retaliatory attacks. President Bush and Vice-President Dick Cheney were convinced, current and former intelligence and diplomatic officials told me, that a successful Israeli Air Force bombing campaign against Hezbollah’s heavily fortified underground-missile and command-and-control complexes in Lebanon could ease Israel’s security concerns and also serve as a prelude to a potential American preĆ«mptive attack to destroy Iran’s nuclear installations, some of which are also buried deep underground.
First, note that former intelligence & diplo officials are a source, but Sy is unwilling to provide us with the names. For such a scurrilous and inflammatory charge, surely Sy would require them to be on the record in order for him to use them as a source, right?

Second, I hope that the US recognizes that an attack against Hezbollah Command & Control would "ease" Israel's security concerns... since that's just a statement of fact.

Third, I also hope that any useful information about success rates of attacking heavily fortified positions designed by Iran & Syria is being sought out by the US. Doesn't Sy want the Bush Administration to be "curious?"
Israeli military and intelligence experts I spoke to emphasized that the country’s immediate security issues were reason enough to confront Hezbollah, regardless of what the Bush Administration wanted. Shabtai Shavit, a national-security adviser to the Knesset who headed the Mossad, Israel’s foreign-intelligence service, from 1989 to 1996, told me, “We do what we think is best for us, and if it happens to meet America’s requirements, that’s just part of a relationship between two friends. Hezbollah is armed to the teeth and trained in the most advanced technology of guerrilla warfare. It was just a matter of time. We had to address it.”

Hezbollah is seen by Israelis as a profound threat—a terrorist organization, operating on their border, with a military arsenal that, with help from Iran and Syria, has grown stronger since the Israeli occupation of southern Lebanon ended, in 2000.
For some reason, I don't get the feeling that Sy shares this view of Hezbollah...
[...]
According to a Middle East expert with knowledge of the current thinking of both the Israeli and the U.S. governments, Israel had devised a plan for attacking Hezbollah—and shared it with Bush Administration officials—well before the July 12th kidnappings. “It’s not that the Israelis had a trap that Hezbollah walked into,” he said, “but there was a strong feeling in the White House that sooner or later the Israelis were going to do it.”

Aha!! A Middle East expert with knowledge of the current thinking in both Irsael & the US. And someone whose view on the matter is that the US and the Zionists were plotting to beat up on poor, helpless Hezbollah at a moments notice. I have a couple of possible sources - at least, people who have said similar things in the past:
  1. Hasan Nasrallah, leader of Hezbollah
  2. Achmenadijaljasd, President of Iran
  3. Osama Bin Ladin
  4. Any number of neo-Nazi websites
Just saying.... when Sy is unwilling to name his sources, I guess I am expected to just figure out for myself who his sources are.
The Middle East expert said that the Administration had several reasons for supporting the Israeli bombing campaign. Within the State Department, it was seen as a way to strengthen the Lebanese government so that it could assert its authority over the south of the country, much of which is controlled by Hezbollah. He went on, “The White House was more focussed on stripping Hezbollah of its missiles, because, if there was to be a military option against Iran’s nuclear facilities, it had to get rid of the weapons that Hezbollah could use in a potential retaliation at Israel. Bush wanted both. Bush was going after Iran, as part of the Axis of Evil, and its nuclear sites, and he was interested in going after Hezbollah as part of his interest in democratization, with Lebanon as one of the crown jewels of Middle East democracy.”

Administration officials denied that they knew of Israel’s plan for the air war. The White House did not respond to a detailed list of questions. In response to a separate request, a National Security Council spokesman said, “Prior to Hezbollah’s attack on Israel, the Israeli government gave no official in Washington any reason to believe that Israel was planning to attack. Even after the July 12th attack, we did not know what the Israeli plans were.” A Pentagon spokesman said, “The United States government remains committed to a diplomatic solution to the problem of Iran’s clandestine nuclear weapons program,” and denied the story, as did a State Department spokesman.

The United States and Israel have shared intelligence and enjoyed close military coƶperation for decades, but early this spring, according to a former senior intelligence official, high-level planners from the U.S. Air Force—under pressure from the White House to develop a war plan for a decisive strike against Iran’s nuclear facilities—began consulting with their counterparts in the Israeli Air Force.

“The big question for our Air Force was how to hit a series of hard targets in Iran successfully,” the former senior intelligence official said. “Who is the closest ally of the U.S. Air Force in its planning? It’s not Congo—it’s Israel. Everybody knows that Iranian engineers have been advising Hezbollah on tunnels and underground gun emplacements. And so the Air Force went to the Israelis with some new tactics and said to them, ‘Let’s concentrate on the bombing and share what we have on Iran and what you have on Lebanon.’ ” The discussions reached the Joint Chiefs of Staff and Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, he said.

The story goes further and it's clear that those that he cite as sources clearly do not see the conspiratorial hand that Sy and his "Middle East Expert" see. But, there are a few intriguing things about this piece. First, it is actually a political hit-piece against the evil Cheney and Rumsfeld - and it appears to be driven by foreign policy "realists" (who are no fans of Bush - or reality) and opponents from the Democratic party, such as Wesley Clark.

Second, I did a quick Google search on Sy to find this article. It is amazing how derange Sy has become over the years. Here is a list of a few hits that Google returned:
  1. Wednesday, January 26th, 2005 - Seymour Hersh: "We've Been Taken Over by a Cult." In this interview with Amy Goodman of DemocracyNow (such a hottie!), he discusses how a "cult" of 8 or 9 neocons have taken over the government
  2. Journalist: U.S. planning for possible attack on Iran - "The Bush administration has been carrying out secret reconnaissance missions to learn about nuclear, chemical and missile sites in Iran in preparation for possible airstrikes there, journalist Seymour Hersh said Sunday"
  3. Annals of National Security: Get Out The Vote - Did Washington try to manipulate Iraq’s election? by Seymour Hersh, The New Yorker [US]- July 18th, 2005
Clearly these are not the writings of an investigative journalist. They would be more appropriate appearing on the pages of 911Truth.org, Al Jazeera, and/or InfoWars.com

It seems that, to Sy Hersch, any world event can be explained by the conspiratorial manipulations of neo-cons, Zionists, and the dark overlord / sith master of them all, Dick Cheney. I find this type of argument tiring and troubling. Not only is it not constructive for discussion, but it feeds into the pre-conceived fantasies of our enemies: the Islamofascists. Giving such legitimacy to conspiracy theories like this only hurts us along with the Israelis in our civilizational struggle against the Islamists.

What makes it more troubling is that Sy Hersch is one of God's chosen people himself, meaning that he truly earns the moniker, "Kapo."



Your Co-Conspirator,
ARC: St Wendeler

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

The French

With the French renegging (what else is new?) on their commitment to the Lebanon peace keeping/enforcing commitment, this email I received today seemed very timely:

----- Original Message -----
From: Bob Asher
To:
Cc:
Sent:
Tuesday, August 22, 2006 10:49 PM
Subject: Re: History Lesson About France.

Hi Dottie,

Your Uncle John, my father, made the Normandy Invasion in person and told me this: I had to climb over bodies and body parts and move ahead. When we marched into Paris the French cheered "Viva DuPont!". I am not sure they knew who we were or why we were there. When a jeep or 1/2 track had anti-freeze, my motor pool stenciled "DuPont", the brand of anti-freeze, on the front bumper. They are stupid people and they drink a lot. Many of them still don't remember when we Americans marched through that day when we "liberated" them forever - even to this day. Being stupid is out of their control - probably inherited. Being drunk is their choice. So is being cowardly. I could add, being forgetfull is also a choice. Being forgiving is what we do best, along with liberating. We can forgive then for being stupid, drunk and forgetful. But we cannot let their stupid comments stop us from liberating other oppressed. Most people appreciate being free.

God Bless America and those who understand leadership, sacrifice and not being cowardly.

----- Original Message -----
From:
To:
Sent:
Tuesday, August 22, 2006 4:10 PM
Subject: History Lesson About France.

June 6, 1944. - NORMANDY

Three hundred French civilians were killed and thousands more wounded, today, in the first hours of America's invasion of continental Europe. Casualties were heaviest among women and children. Most of the French casualties were the result of artillery fire from American ships attempting to knock out German fortifications prior to the landing of hundreds of thousands of U.S. troops. Reports from a makeshift hospital in the French town of St. Mere Eglise said the carnage was far worse than the French had anticipated, and reaction against the American invasion was running high. "We are dying for no reason," said a Frenchman speaking on condition of anonymity. "Americans can't even shoot straight. I never thought I'd say this, but life was better under Adolf Hitler."

The invasion also caused severe environmental damage. American troops, tanks, trucks and machinery destroyed miles of pristine shoreline and thousands of acres of ecologically sensitive wetlands. It was believed that the habitat of the spineless French crab was completely wiped out, threatening the species with extinction. A representative of Green peace said his organization, which had tried to stall the invasion for over a year, was appalled at the destruction, but not surprised. "This is just another example of how the military destroys the environment without a second thought, " said Christine Moanmore. "And it's all about corporate greed." Contacted at his Manhattan condo, a member of the French government-in-exile, who abandoned Paris when Hitler invaded, said the invasion was based solely on American financial interests. "Everyone knows the President Roosevelt has ties to big beer," said Pierre LeWimp. "Once the German beer industry is conquered, Roosevelt's beer cronies will control the world market and make a fortune."

Administration supporters said America 's aggressive actions were based in part on the assertions of controversial scientist Albert Einstein, who sent a letter to Roosevelt speculating that the Germans were developing a secret weapon, a so-called "atomic bomb." Such a weapon could produce casualties on a scale never seen before and cause environmental damage that could last for thousands of years. Hitler has denied having such a weapon and international inspectors were unable to locate such weapons even after spending two long weekends in Germany. Shortly after the invasion began reports surfaced that German prisoners had been abused by Americans. Mistreatment of Jews by Germans at so-called "concentration camps" has been rumored, but so far, remains unproven.

Several thousand Americans died during the first hours of the invasion, and French officials are concerned that uncollected corpses pose a public health risk. "The Americans should have planned for this in advance," they said. "It's their mess and we don't intend to clean it up."

------ End of Forwarded Message

Your Co-Conspirator,
ARC: MontereyJohn

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Russell Simmons: Painted-on black face over conservative policies

Or something like that... I mean, surely he knows he's gone over to the side of Evil by endorsing Michael Steele, right?

Or it could be that he recognizes that some policies endorsed by the GOP are actually beneficial to all Americans, including African-Americans?

Hip-hopper sings Steele praise
Published August 21, 2006

Hip-hop mogul Russell Simmons will be the host of a campaign fundraiser Thursday for Maryland Lt. Gov. Michael S. Steele's run for U.S. Senate.

The fundraiser for Mr. Steele, a Republican who would be the state's first black U.S. senator if elected, will be held at the Frederick Douglass-Isaac Myers Maritime Park in Baltimore.

Also scheduled to participate in the event are Cathy Hughes, founder and chairman of Radio One, a black-run broadcasting company specializing in urban markets, and hip-hop pioneer DJ Kid Capri.
[...]
Ms. Hughes and Mr. Simmons, the man behind the Def Jam Recordings music label and the platinum-plated careers of acts including the Beastie Boys, LL Cool J and Run-DMC, embody Mr. Steele's message of economic opportunity, campaign spokesman Doug Heye said.

"These are both people who not only built extremely successful companies but companies that are actively involved in their communities," Mr. Heye said. "It goes to what Mr. Steele talks about in building legacy wealth."

Mr. Simmons, who often has used his music empire to advance liberal political activism, has backed the Republican administration in Maryland.

He applauded Maryland Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr., a Republican, in February 2005 for winning over black voters with urban initiatives, especially criminal-justice reforms, and raising the Republican Party's profile among blacks nationwide.

"He raised the whole party up," Mr. Simmons said at the time. "He makes every Republican open for discussion" among black voters. Mr. Simmons campaigned in 2002 for Mr. Ehrlich's Democratic rival, Kathleen Kennedy Townsend, and said he initially had negative impressions of both Mr. Ehrlich and Mr. Steele. But he says the Ehrlich administration has demonstrated that both men "should be held up to the light as examples" of Republican leaders who are committed to all of their constituents.

It seems that Russell is a little more open-minded and tolerant of others' opinions than some.

Nah... he's just a sellout. Always has been, always will be.

Your Co-Conspirator,
ARC: St Wendeler

Monday, August 21, 2006

BDS from Ted Rall

Ted Rall demonstrates again that he has succumbed to Bush Derangement Syndrome:



We live in a fascist state where they:

  • monitor your emails & phone calls (if you happen to be talking to someone associated with Al Qaeda)
  • "steal" your toothpaste and shampoo (because terrorists are using liquids to make bombs)
  • impose police checkpoints (somewhere, although I haven't ever been stopped at a police checkpoint in my town, in NYC, in any airport, in the subway, in train stations, etc, etc.... but I'm sure they exist, because Ted says they do!)
  • have established concentration camps (that Rall actually believes this is proof that he has lost touch with reality - despite his claims to be part of the "reality based community")
It's just so weird how deranged this guy is.

Unless..... wait... wait one minute!

Is Ted Rall making fun of the idiotic arguments of the Left?

COMIC GENIUS!!!!

I get it, Ted... I get it!!! You are amazing!

Your Co-Conspirator,
ARC: St Wendeler

Sunday, August 20, 2006

Calling All Chickendoves! Calling All Chickendoves!!!

Vinnie at MyPetJawa has an excellent suggestion to the Moonbat-o-sphere:

Shut Up And Serve, Chickendoves

Well, well, now the time is come for all good smelly hippies to come to the aid of their international community.
There were no signs of further clashes, but the flare-up underlined worries about the fragility of the cease-fire as the U.N. pleaded for nations to send troops to an international force in southern Lebanon that is to separate Israeli and Hezbollah fighters.
Why, we have a vital peacekeeping force able to serve in this dire time right here in America. Some of them are at "Camp Casey," some of them are marching in San Francisco, some of them are marching, well, wherever in the hell they march.

Thousands upon thousands, on a regular basis, get out and burn American and Israeli flags, and threaten counter-protestors, and destroy property, in the name of Peace.

I call on Kos, and Atrios, and Jane Hamster, and Arianna Huffington, and Deb Frisch, and Noam Chomsky, etc. etc. ad nauseum, to exhort their bloodthirstyless hordes to do what's right in the name of Peace.

Get your chicken asses over to southern Lebanon and do your duty for peace, justice, and the Leftist way. The United Nations needs you. NOW!

I agree... now is the time for those that champion the UN way of doing things, those that require a "global test" before making any foreign policy decision, to put their butts where their mouths are.

*** UPDATE ***
As if on cue, the French (ie, Chickendoves Supreme) have decided they will only provide 200 of the originally promised 15,000 troops - at least, until Hezbollah and Israel will provide "safety guarantees" for its soldiers.

Check out this Cox & Forkum post (click for text as well as their 'toon):



Your Co-Conspirator,
ARC: St Wendeler

The Key Question Is

what is Mrs. Mayo's stance on the Lieberman / Lamont situation.... (at least, it seems like that's all the MSM/Kossacks/FDLers are interested in.)

Flight passengers describe hours of bizarre behavior
By Audrey Hudson
THE WASHINGTON TIMES
Published August 18, 2006

A self-described peace activist responsible for the diversion of a London-to-Washington flight Wednesday acted bizarrely for hours, made references to al Qaeda and hijack training flights, and was restrained by two passengers after she urinated in the aisle.

Catherine C. Mayo, 59, a Vermont woman who also lives part time in Pakistan, was charged yesterday in federal court with interfering with a flight crew.

United Flight 923 was forced to make an emergency landing at Boston's Logan International Airport under escort by two military jets.

"She's got some very serious mental health problems," said Page Kelley, Mrs. Mayo's attorney, who described her client as "just barely lucid."

According to an affidavit and passenger accounts, Mrs. Mayo began pacing the plane from the front to aft lavatory and asked a flight attendant, "Is this a training flight for United Flight 93?" -- the flight hijacked on September 11, 2001, that crashed into a Pennsylvania farm field.

Mrs. Mayo demanded to speak with an air marshal, saying the contents of her bag would be of interest. Her bag contained a screwdriver, body lotion, several cigarette lighters and a bottle of water. The affidavit did not say how she smuggled the items on board, despite being screened twice at London's Heathrow Airport.

When confronted by the captain, Mrs. Mayo made a reference to bomb assembly, saying, "There are six steps to building some unspecified thing."

"She made reference to being with people associated with two words," the affidavit said. "She stated that she could not say what the two words were because the last time that she had said the two words she had been kicked off a flight in the United Arab Emirates."

The captain ordered her restrained, and the passengers and a flight attendant tackled her and placed her hands in plastic cuffs.
[...]
Mrs. Mayo told passengers she was an undercover reporter testing security to see whether she could sneak restricted items on board.

As a columnist for the Daily Times of Pakistan, Mrs. Mayo criticized President Bush -- calling him "a president not elected by the people"-- and the war in Iraq. "The folksongs of the 1960s will never be written again because of President George Bush. He has hampered the liberties of my country in the name of September 11. Songs now can only talk of patriotism they cannot mention peace," she wrote.

Passengers initially assumed the men who restrained Mrs. Mayo were federal air marshals but yesterday said they were passengers recruited by flight attendants who provided them with handcuffs.

"They were asked to be on the alert in case we need you," said Joan Bartko, a passenger who was traveling with her family.

Mrs. Mayo "took down her slacks and started taking down her underwear, and that's when they got her. They were just passengers on the plane who immediately helped," Mrs. Bartko said.

For some reason, I see her more as a Lamont supporter. I certainly know that she'll be casting her vote for Bernie Sanders (Socialist-VT)

Your Co-Conspirator,
ARC: St Wendeler

Firing Up for the Final Push to November

I doubt I am the only one who finds the "debate" leading up to the November elections incredibly tedious.

From Merriam-Webster:
Main Entry: te·dious
Pronunciation: 'tE-dE-&s, 'tE-j&s
Function: adjective
Etymology: Middle English, from Late Latin taediosus, from Latin taedium
Date: 15th century
: tiresome because of length or dullness : BORING
- te·dious·ly adverb
- te·dious·ness noun

I am coming to believe the the Left's reptetitious approach to events, be it Iraq, the economy, taxes etc may be deliberately tedious. It is possibly calculated to turn off the electorate thus allowing the moonbats minimal numbers to have a greater impact.

Their arguments are so factually challenged that one could spend every waking hour trying to bat them down. John Kerry gives a lovely example when he says American troups terrorize women and children in the dark of the night. Dick Durbin compares Guatanamo to the Gulag and Hitler's concentration camps. Multitudes of Lefties think listening in on enemy communications in pursuit of intelligence is somehow a violation of the Fourth Amendment. Cutting taxes for the highest rate payers is somehow unfair to those who pay little or no taxes. They seem to think that saying the same ridiculous thing over and over again makes it so. In this they are aided and abetted by many in the media. The media uncritically disseminates the Left's views without context or analysis... because it suits their agenda.

And if that isn't tedious, I don't know what is.

If their purpose is to confuse and wear down a war weary electorate, I fear it may well be working. I for one surely am tired of it. I know I spend little or no time or effort trying to bat down the latest looney theory those on the Left are advancing.

And, damn it, this is just too important to let them get away with it. Their defeatist, ignorant and cynical crap must be exposed for what it is. The issues are too important for us to abandon the field.

So, let us gird for this final push and as Henry said on St. Crispin's day all those years ago:

What's he that wishes so?
My cousin Westmoreland? No, my fair cousin;
If we are mark'd to die, we are enow
To do our country loss; and if to live,
The fewer men, the greater share of honour.
God's will! I pray thee, wish not one man more.
By Jove, I am not covetous for gold,
Nor care I who doth feed upon my cost;
It yearns me not if men my garments wear;
Such outward things dwell not in my desires.
But if it be a sin to covet honour,
I am the most offending soul alive.
No, faith, my coz, wish not a man from England.
God's peace! I would not lose so great an honour
As one man more methinks would share from me
For the best hope I have. O, do not wish one more!
Rather proclaim it, Westmoreland, through my host,
That he which hath no stomach to this fight,
Let him depart; his passport shall be made,
And crowns for convoy put into his purse;
We would not die in that man's company
That fears his fellowship to die with us.
This day is call'd the feast of Crispian.
He that outlives this day, and comes safe home,
Will stand a tip-toe when this day is nam'd,
And rouse him at the name of Crispian.
He that shall live this day, and see old age,
Will yearly on the vigil feast his neighbours,
And say 'To-morrow is Saint Crispian.'
Then will he strip his sleeve and show his scars,
And say 'These wounds I had on Crispian's day.'
Old men forget; yet all shall be forgot,
But he'll remember, with advantages,
What feats he did that day. Then shall our names,
Familiar in his mouth as household words-
Harry the King, Bedford and Exeter,
Warwick and Talbot, Salisbury and Gloucester-
Be in their flowing cups freshly rememb'red.
This story shall the good man teach his son;
And Crispin Crispian shall ne'er go by,
From this day to the ending of the world,
But we in it shall be remembered-
We few, we happy few, we band of brothers;
For he to-day that sheds his blood with me
Shall be my brother; be he ne'er so vile,
This day shall gentle his condition;
And gentlemen in England now-a-bed
Shall think themselves accurs'd they were not here,
And hold their manhoods cheap whiles any speaks
That fought with us upon Saint Crispin's day.



Your Co-Conspirator,
ARC: Monterey John

Kossacks Cry Out for a Return to Stupidity

Yes, reclaim your roots and be proud of your lack of intelligence and stubborness.

Embracing Our Inner Jackass
by georgia10
Sun Aug 20, 2006 at 04:21:35 AM PDT

Symbols are everything in politics. Whether it's the American flag or a yellow ribbon or a peace symbol, a simple image can connote so much. I've always wondered how and why the donkey came to symbolize our party. I decided to satisfy my curiosity and finally figure out the answer.

Interesting that this nutroot doesn't know the basics about his party.

[...]
It wouldn't take much photoshopping to alter Nast's "Third Term Panic" of 1874 to a "Second Term Panic" of 2006. Swap "Caesarism" with the threat of an imperial presidency. Add some more reality into the pit, like Iraq, Afghanistan, deficits and death. All that's missing from today's political picture is that little jackass...

Let's embrace our inner jackass. Let's immerse ourselves in an issue, wear it as our skin, and let's start kicking, screaming and raising hell. Sure, no matter how good the midterm numbers look, the Republican Party is still a formidable opponent whose massive election apparatus makes winning a Democratic majority an uphill battle. And yes, that is intimidating. But let us not forget that now more than ever, the Republican Party has adopted its symbol to the core. Today's GOP moves with sloth-like slowness. It clumsily meanders through crisis. It stomps its way through delicate issues. It knows nothing of nuance or degree. It is, above all things, just there, standing stupidly still most of the time, oblivious to its own stench or the dark shadow its lumbering body casts upon our lives.


And I'd like to point out that elephants can be quite fast (24 mph)... and if you think facing a stubborn and stupid donkey is a challenge, try a charging elephant. Oh, and let's not forget that the Elephant is often believed to be one of the more intelligent of God's creations.

Meanwhile, donkey's have the distinction of being a multicultural insult:
Insult and vulgarity
  • The donkey has long been a symbol of ignorance. Examples can be found in Aesop's Fables, Apuleius's The Golden Ass (The Metamorphoses of Lucius Apuleius) and Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream
  • Because of its connection with ignorance, in modern slang, referring to someone as a dumbass means that they are unintelligent. Many people would find this term vulgar and rude. On the other hand, referring to someone as a smartass means that they are somewhat intelligent, but smart-alecky and irreverent.
  • In contrast, to refer to someone as a jackass in modern slang provides a connotation of being obnoxious, rude, and thoughtless, with or without the added connotation of stupidity. This usage is also considered vulgar. A less vulgar substitute is donkey itself, as in, "He is such a donkey; he dances to Abba's 'Dancing Queen' in his underwear."
  • The unmodified word ass has entered common use in the English language as a term used to describe a person who resembles a donkey in some way, such as appearance, stubbornness, foolishness, etc.
  • In football, especially in the United Kingdom, a player who is considered unskilful, and to rely overly on his physical attributes to cover up his technical shortcomings, is often dubbed a "donkey."
  • Term for bad poker players that play hands when the odds are against them. "Wayne is such a donkey, he put all his chips in drawing dead" (also sometimes referred to as a fish)
  • in Egypt, Donkey or homar is a derogatory term that refers to someone of very limited intelligence. Another usage is "Work Donkey" which means a very heavy worker, usually in routine non-creative work; for example, someone might say "Give that job to Ali, he's a Work Donkey anyway and he won't mind."

heh

Your Co-Conspirator,
ARC: St Wendeler

Your Weekly Steyn

always a great read. This one is no exception:

World is watching as Iraq war tests U.S. mettle
August 20, 2006

BY MARK STEYN SUN-TIMES COLUMNIST

One way to measure how the world has changed in these last five years is to consider the extraordinary address to his nation by General Musharraf on Sept. 19, 2001. Pakistan was one of just three countries in the world (along with "our friends the Saudis" and the United Arab Emirates) to recognize the Taliban -- and, given that the Pakistanis had helped create and maintain them, they were pretty easy to recognize. President Bush, you'll recall, had declared that you're either with us or you're with the terrorists -- which posed a particular problem for Musharraf: He was with us but everyone else in his country was with the terrorists, including his armed forces, his intelligence services, the media, and a gazillion and one crazy imams.

Nonetheless, with American action against Afghanistan on the horizon, he went on TV that night and told the Pakistani people that this was the gravest threat to the country's existence in over 30 years. He added that he was doing everything to ensure his brothers in the Taliban didn't "suffer," and that he'd asked Washington to provide some evidence that this bin Laden chap had anything to do with the attacks but that so far they'd declined to show him any. Then he cited the Charter of Medina (which the Prophet Muhammad signed after an earlier spot of bother) as an attempt to justify providing assistance to the infidel, and said he'd had no choice but to offer the Americans use of Pakistan's airspace, intelligence networks and other logistical support.

He paused for applause, and after the world's all-time record volume of crickets chirping, said thank you and goodnight.

That must have been quite the phone call he'd got from Washington a day or two earlier. And all within a week of Sept. 11. You may remember during the 2000 campaign an enterprising journalist sprung on Gov. Bush a sudden pop quiz of world leaders. Bush, invited to name the leader of Pakistan, was unable to. But so what? In the third week of September 2001, the correct answer to "Who's General Musharraf?" was "Whoever I want him to be." And, if Musharraf didn't want to play ball, he'd wind up as the answer to "Who was leader of Pakistan until last week?"

Do you get the feeling Washington's not making phone calls like that anymore?

If you go back to September 2001, it's amazing how much the administration made happen in just a short space of time: For example, within days it had secured agreement with the Russians on using military bases in former Soviet Central Asia for intervention in Afghanistan. That, too, must have been quite a phone call. Moscow surely knew that any successful Afghan expedition would only cast their own failures there in an even worse light -- especially if the Americans did it out of the Russians' old bases. And yet it happened.

Five years on, the United States seems to be back in the quagmire of perpetual interminable U.N.-brokered EU-led multilateral dithering, on Iran and much else. The administration that turned Musharraf in nothing flat now offers carrots to Ahmadinejad. After the Taliban fell, the region's autocrats and dictators wondered: Who's next? Now they figure it's a pretty safe bet that nobody is.

What's the difference between September 2001 and now? It's not that anyone "liked" America or that, as the Democrats like to suggest, the country had the world's "sympathy.'' Pakistani generals and the Kremlin don't cave to your demands because they "sympathize.'' They go along because you've succeeded in impressing upon them that they've no choice. Musharraf and Co. weren't scared by America's power but by the fact that America, in the rubble of 9/11, had belatedly found the will to use that power. It is notionally at least as powerful today, but in terms of will we're back to Sept. 10: Nobody thinks America is prepared to use its power. And so Nasrallah and Ahmadinejad and wannabe "strong horses" like Baby Assad cock their snooks with impunity.

I happened to be in the Australian Parliament for Question Time last week. The matter of Iraq came up, and the foreign minister, Alexander Downer, thwacked the subject across the floor and over the opposition benches in a magnificent bravura display of political confidence culminating with the gleefully low jibe that "the Leader of the Opposition's constant companion is the white flag.'' The Iraq war is unpopular in Australia, as it is in America and in Britain. But the Aussie government is happy for the opposition to bring up the subject as often as they want because Downer and his prime minister understand very clearly that wanting to "cut and run" is even more unpopular. So in the broader narrative it's a political plus for them: Unlike Bush and Blair, they've succeeded in making the issue not whether the nation should have gone to war but whether the nation should lose the war.

That's not just good politics, but it's actually the heart of the question. Of course, if Bush sneered that John Kerry and Ted Kennedy and Howard Dean and Nancy Pelosi's constant companion is the white flag, they'd huff about how dare he question their patriotism. But, if you can't question their patriotism when they want to lose a war, when can you? At one level, the issue is the same as it was on Sept. 11: American will and national purpose. But the reality is that it's worse than that -- for (as Israel is also learning) to begin something and be unable to stick with it to the finish is far more damaging to your reputation than if you'd never begun it in the first place. Nitwit Democrats think anything that can be passed off as a failure in Iraq will somehow diminish only Bush and the neocons. In reality -- a concept with which Democrats seem only dimly acquainted -- it would diminish the nation, and all but certainly end the American moment. In late September 2001 the administration succeeded in teaching a critical lesson to tough hombres like Musharraf and Putin: In a scary world, America can be scarier. But it's all a long time ago now.

To which the Lefty Moonbats will shout "HALLIBURTON!!!!!"

Your Co-Conspirator,
ARC: St Wendeler