Patterico's Pontifications

4/23/2009

Caterpillars!

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 8:51 pm

Torture is, once again, being debated online. Last night, riffing off recent revelations that the U.S. had considered putting a terrorist in a box with caterpillars:

Justice Department lawyers said the CIA could place Zubaydah in a cramped confinement box. Because Zubaydah appeared afraid of insects, they also authorized interrogators to place him in a box and fill [the] box with caterpillars (that tactic ultimately was not used).

Allahpundit got all Jim Treacher on us and let loose with a stream of Twitter posts that I think deserve to be collected in one place:

You know who’s really upset about the caterpillar? The charred piece of my cousin’s ribcage found in the WTC rubble.

If I’m ever in a skyscraper that’s collapsing bc it’s been hit by a jet, remember: No putting caterpillars on people in *my* name.

One thing about torture that keeps me up at night is reprisals. What if AQ captures a U.S. soldier and puts him in a box with a caterpillar?

Do we really want religious fanatics thinking it’s okay to put caterpillars on people? Where does it end?

The caterpillar thing is actually a source of comfort when you think about it. Sure, Danny Pearl was beheaded. But — no caterpillar.

I used to have nightmares about diving face first off the roof of a burning skyscraper. Now I have nightmares about caterpillars.

I just hope our guys are being trained to resist caterpillars. Oh, and having their heads caught off on tape for jihadi porn.

As for me, with the recent revelation of memos that claim that a plot to fly airplanes into buildings in Los Angeles was disrupted by waterboarding KSM, the question is simple:

Waterboard the scum who planned the death of 3000 Americans?

or

Let thousands more die?

If you have a tough time answering that question, there’s something wrong with you.

Crowder Takes on Perez Hilton

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 6:52 pm

This may be my favorite Crowder video ever. Excellent quotes abound. Here’s a taste of Crowder addressing Perez Hilton:

How does it feel to have become just like the throngs of bullies who undoubtedly stuffed you into lockers for the better half of your high school years? . . .The fact is that you’re a talentless hack who has been given a bully pulpit solely because you’re gay in an attempt to appease the politically correct Hollywood establishment.

Awesome.

Ted Rall Laid Off

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 5:51 pm

I don’t normally gloat when someone loses their job, but for this tool, I’m willing to make an exception. Especially given that his “job” consists of comparing U.S. soldiers to suicide bombers; mocking widows of terror victims; profiting from Pat Tillman’s death; assuming the voice of Iraqi soldiers talking about killing American soldiers; making leftist political hay out of the Nick Berg beheading; lying about lefty blogger vitriol; and suing a guy for making him appear to be a “rude, petty, self-absorbed writer/cartoonist” (which is what he is).

Fuck Ted Rall. I’m glad he got laid off.

Lunchtime Links

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 12:30 pm

Photo: Larry Summers dozes through a meeting with credit card industry leaders.

Fed chief and former Treasury Secretary engaged in activities that sound a lot like securities fraud.

Say goodbye to the F-22.

Other Miss USA contestants say Miss California should have been more PC.

With an equally confused Larry King on hand, Levi Johnston tries in vain to figure out why in the world the Palins would be mad at him.

Video: translating Joe Cocker. (Via LauraW at Ace.)

Video: Shepard Smith freaks out and screams the f-word on air about how we shouldn’t torture.

Feds preparing a bankruptcy filing for Chrysler.

Good News: Taliban About to Take Over Pakistan and Its Nukes

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 11:15 am

Uh-oh.

Pakistan teetered on the brink of collapse today as Taliban fighters threatened to overrun the volatile country.

As violence broke out in the disputed north-west corner, U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said the state, which has nuclear capability, now posed a ‘mortal threat’ to the world.

‘I think the Pakistani government is basically abdicating to the Taliban and the extremists,’ she added.

Thank God we have someone in the White House who is tough, and whose first priority is protecting the American people.

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I am going to go scream into a pillow.

UPDATE: Allahpundit has much more. All of it is even more worrisome.

Green is the new Ponzi

Filed under: General — Karl @ 6:26 am

[Posted by Karl]

I forgot yesterday was Earth Day.  Then again, so has Vanity Fair magazine.  I must be in the group that thought electing Pres. Obama automatically fixed the environment. No, wait, that’s Democrats.

Speaking of the president:

The Obama administration is using Earth Day for launching another all-out effort to sell the American public and key lawmakers on “green jobs” as the solution for the United States’ environmental and economic woes.

However, a recent paper by professors Andrew P. Morriss, William T. Bogart and Roger E. Meiners, along with with international law expert Andrew Dorchak, concludes that “green jobs” programs are a scam:

Our review of the claims of green jobs proponents, however, leaves us skeptical because the green jobs literature is rife with internal contradictions, vague terminology, dubious science, and ignorance of basic economic principles. Indeed, the green jobs literature claims resemble the promises of long-term financial prosperity offered by Ponzi schemes. New taxes, increased public borrowing, and government subsidies will be needed to support green jobs programs. We find no evidence that these “investments” in green jobs can support the promised results. Investing taxpayers’ money in developing green jobs as an economic and environmental panacea, are likely, like a Ponzi scheme, to result in empty bank accounts.

Our review convinces us that the real purpose of the green jobs initiative is not to create jobs but to remake society. The sweeping changes advocated in these reports under the guise of greening our economy are intended to shift the American and world economies away from decentralized decision making, in favor of centralized planning. Therefore, instead of allowing individuals to voluntarily trade in free markets in pursuit of their own ends, green jobs advocates would instead discourage trade and allow technologies to be chosen by central planners and politicians, who would determine the choices faced by consumers and workers. By wrapping these policy shifts in the green jobs mantle, those advocating the reorganization of much of life hope to avoid a debate over the massive costly changes they want to impose.

In the Times of London, Dominic Lawson compares “green jobs” to subprime mortgages and has great fun dissecting the idiocy of British plans promoting electric cars, before turning to Obama’s schemes:

The key to a successful, wealth-generating economy is productivity. Saving energy is what businesses have done already, because it lowers their production costs. The problem with any form of subsidy is that it makes the consumer (through hidden taxes) pay to keep inherently uneconomic businesses “profitable”. Meanwhile, diversified energy companies such as Shell, with plenty of speculatively acquired wind-farm acreage, are salivating at the plans by Obama to introduce cap-and-trade carbon emissions targets for American industry.

Obama’s energy secretary, Steven Chu, had some soothing words for US manufacturing companies that complained that the new policy will make them even less competitive with Chinese exporters, since the people’s republic has indicated that it has no intention of inflicting a similar increase in energy costs on its own producers. He suggested that America might have to introduce some sort of “carbon-intensive” tariff on Chinese goods. One of China’s envoys, Li Gao, immediately retorted that such a carbon tariff would be a “disaster”, since it could lead to global trade war.

There’s nothing like a trade war in the middle of a global economic contraction.  Obamanomics: it’s like economics, but backwards.

–Karl


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