Patterico's Pontifications


Bin Laden death reax: The shameless and stupid

Filed under: General — Karl @ 8:18 pm

[Posted by Karl]

Last night’s announcement that the US had killed Osama bin Laden was a night for all Americans to feel some measure of victory — or joy that justice had been done, or relief, or closure, or sober reflection on the past near-decade of war, or some complex combination of those feelings.

But for some Americans, the news was a signal to lapse into simple partisan hackery. Don’t get me wrong. Bin Laden’s death will have some partisan political impact, and it is the job of some to discuss it. And the 24/7 news cycle churns ever faster in the age of social media. Obviously, people are going to start raising the topic today. Yet there remains something disturbing about the mentality that leaps immediately to partisan politics upon hearing war news. (more…)

My Donald Trump Idea: Government Apprentice

Filed under: General — Stranahan @ 2:17 pm

[Guest Post by Lee Stranahan]

I’m going to take a brief stab here at taking Donald Trump’s apparent presidential ambitions seriously for a moment.

The sales pitch that The Donald makes for himself over and over again is that many of the country’s problems come down to bad, ineffective negotiation. He uses our relationships with China and OPEC as two examples of where the United States is suffering because of poor negotiation. After positing this as one of our nation’s major deficiencies, he goes on to provide himself as the logical solution.

So the first question is not whether Trump is the man for the job but whether "negotiation" is actually a big a problem as he says it is. I think I’m actually open to that idea. I’m not sure I’ve gone full Trump in viewing it as the overriding issue of our times but so much of the government does seem to involve a significant amount of negotiation; everything from trade deals to foreign-policy to dealing with public sector unions to the business of passing laws. You don’t need to look much further than the healthcare debacle to see an issue where the Obama administration was clearly out negotiated by both the unions and the health insurance industry into a compromise that ended up pleasing very few people.

That being said, it’s almost certain that Trump is severely underestimating the actual task at hand. That doesn’t make him either wrong or useless which leads to another question – why doesn’t some mayor or governor give Trump a chance to come in and either show some skills or leave humiliated? Take some specific issue where negotiating skill is a prime qualification and let Trump have at it.

Political egos are a stumbling block to his idea but given the severity of the situation some of our cities and states I can’t believe there isn’t someone out there who would give it a shot.

– Lee Stranahan

Sockpuppet Monday!—Or Tell Your Favorite bin Laden Death Joke (Update: Memeorandum Juxtaposition)

Filed under: General — Aaron Worthing @ 12:20 pm

[Guest post by Aaron Worthing; if you have tips, please send them here.  Or by Twitter @AaronWorthing.]

Update: I am amused by this juxtaposition at Memeorandum:



Let’s face it, I am not going to be able to think about much more than the news about bin Laden.  It’s like an inverse 9-11.  On 9-11, we couldn’t think about more than the attacks, couldn’t talk about more.  When I walked around the city everyone was having almost the same conversation.  One of my psychopathic instructors tried to hold class but it was a no go.  It probably didn’t help that I had many friends who only weeks before were working in the Towers as summer interns.  And this is sort of like it, only happy!

So I will keep updating this post as a repository of stories and links (keep scrolling to the bottow), and this post will be used to either sockpuppet or to tell a joke about it all.

Obviously the usual rules apply.  Try to switch back to your usual identities when posting on another thread.  And please, try to be funny.

Here’s my favorite jokes so far:

From the Confederate Yankee (who accidentally calls the terrorist “Obama”): Osama’s last words to his wife; “You feed the goats. I’ll feed the fish.”

And Bill Hobbs writes: They buried bin Laden at sea. He’s got his 72 sturgeons.

Let’s keep this post a zero debate zone, except maybe debating the merits of one joke v. another.  Let’s come together and laugh about this whole thing.  It should be therapeutic.

[Posted and authored by Aaron Worthing.]

Osama News Roundup (Video Goodness Added!) (And Confirmed: bin Laden Used a Woman as a Human Shield) (And We Have Our First Death Denier!)

Filed under: General — Aaron Worthing @ 10:56 am

[Guest post by Aaron Worthing; if you have tips, please send them here.  Or by Twitter @AaronWorthing.]

Update: Most updates will be at the end. So scroll down. Including video goodness!

Update (III): This is too awesome to put below the fold. Via the AFP, we get confirmation of a rumor I have heard all day:

Al-Qaeda mastermind Osama bin Laden used one of his wives as a human shield in an apparent attempt to try to save his own life during a raid by US covert forces, a top US official said Monday.
“There was family at that compound, and there was a female who was, in fact, in the line of fire that reportedly was used as a shield to shield bin Laden from the incoming fire,” counter-terrorism official John Brennan said.

And if all that Limbaugh unity isn’t enough I am going to say something truly unprecedented: I agree with Kman. He writes in the comments:

I hope the Navy SEALS had video cams attached to the combat helmets, because the picture I want to see — or rather, the picture the Islamofascists need to see — is the one of bin Laden being a coward and using a woman as a human shield.

Wholly agree. It would only be better as psy-ops if he was wearing a dress.

Update (X): This update is too much fun to put below the fold. We have our first bin Laden Death Denier! She is a lady who once had absolute moral authority, until she was no longer useful politically. Yes, Cindy Sheehan:

I am sorry, but if you believe the newest death of OBL, you’re stupid. Just think to yourself–they paraded Saddam’s dead sons around to prove they were dead–why do you suppose they hastily buried this version of OBL at sea? This lying, murderous Empire can only exist with your brainwashed consent–just put your flags away and THINK!

Bright move on the burial, there, Obama.

Anyway, the original post follows. And most updates will be below the fold, so keep checking. I don’t plan to start a new post on this for a bit.


There is no overarching point to this post, just a bunch of news about the killing and some minor “pop off” commentary.  To be blunt these items are going to be kind of random, so expect a little whiplash jumping from topic to topic.

First, you knew this was coming right?  The inevitable Taiwanese Animation of the Death of Osama.  And damn if it isn’t the best one ever!

Second, I didn’t get to see it last night but here is Obama’s announcement:

Having watched it, I think it was actually a pretty good speech.  I think he took some credit, as expected, but wasn’t obnoxious about it.  And he deserves credit.  He could have wimped out, or badly managed it in some way, so he is right today to say that he deserves credit.  I think the maximally classy thing to do would have been to credit Bush for this, but if he said anything to that effect, I missed it.  Still I give it a positive mark.  I would grade it at an A.

By the way, what is with his odd body language?  Literally nothing but his head moves the whole time.

I feel absolute, undiluted joy by all of this.  And yes, as our brains engage more we will have criticism.  But really, seriously, the news has made my week.

And even Rush Limbaugh felt constrained to start off his broadcast by saying, “we need to open the program today by congratulating President Obama.”  You can watch that here:


What the Hell? Report: Bin Laden Buried at Sea, “In Accordance with Islamic Law”

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 12:57 am

How long did it take Obama to fuck this up? Not long. Forgive the profanity, which as you know is rare on my site, but there really is no other way to describe what Jake Tapper tells us on Twitter:

OBL’s body was buried at sea, in accordance w Islamic law, at 0200 DC time, per US official.

Where do I start?

First of all, I think I speak for many Americans when I say: I don’t give a rat’s ass what Islamic law tells us should happen to bin Laden’s body. Either bin Laden carried out Islam faithfully, in which case it is an evil religion, or (as I believe) he distorted Islam to make it into a religion that calls for mass murder of innocents. Either way, the idea that “Islamic law” should govern what we do with the body of this mass murderer is so laughably outrageous that I hope I will wake up to the news that Tapper’s source got this terribly, terribly wrong.

Second, we have waited 10 years for this. People need to see the body. They need to see the evidence. Someone wrote Instapundit earlier in the evening to say: “When do we get to see the long form death certificate?” It’s a funny crack, but beneath the surface of the joke lies a hard reality: we live in a country where people ignored tons of evidence that Obama was born in Hawaii, and where others ignored tons of evidence that bin Laden and al Qaeda caused 9/11. And in a country apparently teeming with Birthers and Truthers, you’re telling me you’re gonna dump Osama bin Laden’s body in the sea in the middle of the night?

I mean, Mr. President, what will Donald Trump say?!

And once Obama realizes what a stupid move this was, there’s no taking it back. He can’t have his lawyer sign a letter requesting that Davy Jones return the body, ever so briefly, for a little look-see. If Tapper’s report is accurate, the fish of the sea are already enjoying the fruits of “Islamic law” by feasting on bin Laden’s carcass. (What provision of Islamic law calls for burial at sea anyway? This is the first I have heard of this.) No take-backs, no returns.

Look: if they did a DNA test, it’s good enough for me to prove his identity. But it’s an unutterably stupid move to just toss him overboard without giving the world a look. I mean, there really aren’t words to describe just what a meat-headed decision this was.

I write this at 12:50 a.m. Pacific. Most Americans have gone to bed ecstatic in the knowledge that we finally got the son of a bitch.

I have a feeling this whole burial-at-sea and “Islamic law” thing is going to come as kind of a nasty little surprise.


UPDATE: I got a chance to sleep on it and I’m still offended. Let me be clear about why this is so wrong. It’s not the burial at sea — that makes sense, since you don’t want to create a shrine, and the thought of bin Laden getting nibbled to death by fish is a nice image. It’s not dumping the body in the middle of the night — that also makes sense, as there shouldn’t be a ceremony.

What rankles are the things I identified last night. First, it happened before any pictures or video have been released. At least one alleged picture that has circulated is a fake, which reminds us how easy it is to photoshop photographic “proof.” And while I’m sure they took photos and video and will release them at some point — surely they realize they can’t dump the body and release no evidence! — it would have helped quash conspiracy theories to give independent journalists a chance to photograph and videotape the body.

And why wasn’t this simple step taken? That’s the part that is infuriating: apparently because they wanted to rush the burial to conform with “Islamic law.” Well, when it comes to burying Osama bin Laden, Islamic law’s got nothing to do with it. Any Muslim who would be offended that bin Laden was not buried in accordance with Islamic tradition is a Muslim who supports terror. We should not care about offending such people, and fomenting suspicions just to mollify cretins like that strikes me as rank appeasement.

UPDATE x2: I’m going to try not to let this ruin my mood. It’s still a great day for this country when American forces shoot Osama bin Laden between the eyes. Whatever happens to his body is of secondary importance.

When do we get to meet the man (or men) who pulled the trigger? I’d like to buy them a beer, in accordance with Islamic law.

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