Deluded thundershowers of man piss, Like the Mississippi, which just keeps rolling on, Dees/Salamantis bitch, just weeps, trolling on; The first task is to divide it all, Before we shoot, provide a wall. Israel can be relied upon to escalate any situation, America to practice escalatio on Middle Eastern or Asian, Meanwhile, one country at a time, We know the evil monkey commits crime. And Dees again portrays with warp'd scene Yet the sun's rays pith his vapid skein His tale's all told Technique too old The torrid floods from Salamantis/Dees Florid turds dispatched upon sand fleas From rabid right wing writers who Make assertions real war fighters poo Evicted with minor bother and no fuss Deflected brother, through the hand of us.
(C) Hermit 2006.
This seems to be the order of the day.
(BTW Blunderov, which hubristic link was supposed to arise from your suggestion to which this tribute with variations in a minor key plays? I don't think I found what you intended, but verse.)
For your reading pleasure:
Like a spigot plunged into a cask of fine wine, The most horrid puns of the title of mine, Are clearly intended to fork the first line, So forming yet another hubristic couplet, Unclothed even with singlet, Never mind with a doublet, Whilst the torrid floods of florid turds, Were intended as spoon-eristic words, To take the pith out of the knife. (knave) And now I hope, 'tis plain to see, You have a full hand of cutlery Which is better by far than our least favorite retard Who's returned still missing a full deck of cards.)
Why Bush Will Nuke Iran
Source: AntiWar Authors: Paul Craig Roberts Dated: 2006-09-26
The neoconservative Bush administration will attack Iran with tactical nuclear weapons, because it is the only way the neocons believe they can rescue their goal of U.S. (and Israeli) hegemony in the Middle East.
The U.S. has lost the war in Iraq and in Afghanistan. Generals in both war theaters are stating their need for more troops. But there are no troops to send.
Bush has tried to pawn Afghanistan off on NATO, but Europe does not see any point in sacrificing its blood and money for the sake of American hegemony. The NATO troops in Afghanistan are experiencing substantial casualties from a revived Taliban, and European governments are not enthralled over providing cannon fodder for U.S. hegemony.
The "coalition of the willing" has evaporated. Indeed, it never existed. Bush's "coalition" was assembled with bribes, threats, and intimidation. Pervez Musharraf, the American puppet ruler of Pakistan, let the cat out of the bag when he told CBS' 60 Minutes on Sept. 24, 2006, that Pakistan had no choice about joining the "coalition." Brute coercion was applied. Musharraf said Assistant Secretary of State Richard Armitage told the Pakistani intelligence director that "you are with us" or "be prepared to be bombed. Be prepared to go back to the Stone Age." Armitage is trying to deny his threat, but Dawn Wire Service, reporting from Islamabad on Sept. 16, 2001, on the pressure Bush was putting on Musharraf to facilitate the U.S. attack on Afghanistan, stated: "'Pakistan has the option to live in the 21st century or the Stone Age' is roughly how U.S. officials are putting their case."
That Musharraf would volunteer this information on American television is a good indication that Bush has lost the war. Musharraf can no longer withstand the anger he has created against himself by helping the U.S. slaughter his fellow Muslims in Bush's attempt to exercise U.S. hegemony over the Muslim world. Bush cannot protect Musharraf from the wrath of Pakistanis, and so Musharraf has explained himself as having cooperated with Bush in order to prevent the U.S. destruction of Pakistan: "One has to think and take actions in the interest of the nation, and that's what I did." Nevertheless, he said, he refused Bush's "ludicrous" demand that he arrest Pakistanis who publicly demonstrated against the U.S.: "If somebody's expressing views, we cannot curb the expression of views."
Bush's defeats in Iraq and Afghanistan and Israel's defeat by Hezbollah in Lebanon have shown that the military firepower of the U.S. and Israeli armies, though effective against massed Arab armies, cannot defeat guerillas and insurgencies. The U.S. has battled in Iraq longer than it fought against Nazi Germany, and the situation in Iraq is out of control. The Taliban have regained half of Afghanistan. The king of Saudi Arabia has told Bush that the ground is shaking under his feet as unrest over the American/Israeli violence against Muslims builds to dangerous levels. Our Egyptian puppet sits atop 100 million Muslims who do not think that Egypt should be a lackey of U.S. hegemony. The king of Jordan understands that Israeli policy is to drive every Palestinian into Jordan.
Bush is incapable of recognizing his mistake. He can only escalate. Plans have long been made to attack Iran. The problem is that Iran can respond in effective ways to a conventional attack. Moreover, an American attack on another Muslim country could result in turmoil and rebellion throughout the Middle East. This is why the neocons have changed U.S. war doctrine to permit a nuclear strike on Iran.
Neocons believe that a nuclear attack on Iran would have intimidating force throughout the Middle East and beyond. Iran would not dare retaliate, neocons believe, against U.S. ships, U.S. troops in Iraq, or use their missiles against oil facilities in the Middle East.
Neocons have also concluded that a U.S. nuclear strike on Iran would show the entire Muslim world that it is useless to resist America's will. Neocons say that even the most fanatical terrorists would realize the hopelessness of resisting U.S. hegemony. The vast multitude of Muslims would realize that they have no recourse but to accept their fate.
Revised U.S. war doctrine concludes that tactical or low-yield nuclear weapons cause relatively little "collateral damage" or civilian deaths, while achieving a powerful intimidating effect on the enemy. The "fear factor" disheartens the enemy and shortens the conflict.
University of California Professor Jorge Hirsch, an authority on nuclear doctrine, believes that an American nuclear attack on Iran will destroy the Nonproliferation Treaty and send countries in pell-mell pursuit of nuclear weapons. We will see powerful nuclear alliances, such as Russia/China, form against us. Japan could be so traumatized by an American nuclear attack on Iran that it would mean the end of Japan's sycophantic relationship to the U.S.
There can be little doubt that the aggressive U.S. use of nukes in pursuit of hegemony would make America a pariah country, despised and distrusted by every other country. Neocons believe that diplomacy is feeble and useless, but that the unapologetic use of force brings forth cooperation in order to avoid destruction.
Neoconservatives say that America is the new Rome, only more powerful than Rome. Neoconservatives genuinely believe that no one can withstand the might of the United States and that America can rule by force alone. Hirsch believes that the U.S. military's opposition to the use of nuclear weapons against Iran has been overcome by the civilian neocon authorities in the Bush administration. Desperate to retrieve their drive toward hegemony from defeat in Iraq, the neocons are betting on the immense attraction to the American public of force plus success. It is possible that Bush will be blocked by Europe, Russia, and China, but there is no visible American opposition to Bush legitimizing the use of nuclear weapons at the behest of U.S. hegemony.
It is astounding that such dangerous fanatics have control of the U.S. government and have no organized opposition in American politics.
...(BTW Blunderov, which hubristic link was supposed to arise from your suggestion to which this tribute with variations in a minor key plays? I don't think I found what you intended, but verse.)
For your reading pleasure:
Like a spigot plunged into a cask of fine wine, The most horrid puns of the title of mine, Are clearly intended to fork the first line, So forming yet another hubristic couplet, Unclothed even with singlet, Never mind with a doublet, Whilst the torrid floods of florid turds, Were intended as spoon-eristic words, To take the pith out of the knife. (knave) And now I hope, 'tis plain to see, You have a full hand of cutlery Which is better by far than our least favorite retard Whose returned missing even a full deck of cards.)[/i]
[Blunderov] Thank you Hermit The Wasp of Twickenham would approve.
I have so much been enjoying a Dees-free environment that I am resolved to maintain this untroubled and zen-like state indefinitely if possible.
"Destroy his fib, or sophistry--in vain! The creature's at his dirty work again." - Prologue to the Satires (l. 91)
Alexander Pope's take on the troll. When shall we be free?
[Hermit] PS You did not answer my question. Can you please give the link to what the search you hinted at was supposed to reveal?
[Blunderov] My apologies. To be honest I was pondering which link you meant. Was it perhaps this?
set google searchstring = "hudibrastic rhyme" ~suggestion~ seek!"
If so, what I had in mind was the hudibrasric rhyme Straw House/ Whorehouse. Nothing terribly earth shaking really. Just venting some spleen.
I first found out about hudibrastics in that wonderfully Rabelaisian novel by John Barth, "The Sot Weed Factor". Some while back there was a thread in which Virians were discussing the best 100 novels ever written and, somewhat to my surprise, this book was mentioned - until then I had not thought it to be widely known.
Anyway, I had in mind to find something in the book in which Ebenezer discusses hudibrastics. Instead though, I thought you might find this more amusing.
3: EBENEZER IS RESCUED, AND HEARS A DIVERTING TALE INVOLVING ISAAC NEWT0N AND OTHER NOTABLES
LUCKILY for him (else he might have mossed over where he sat), Ebenezer was roused from his remarkable trance shortly after dinnertime by a sudden great commotion at his door. "Eben! Eben! Prithee admit me quickly!" "Who is it?" called Ebenezer, and jumped up in alarm: he had no friends at the College who might be calling on him. "Open and see," the visitor laughed. "Only hurry, I beg of thee!" "Do but wait a minute. I must dress." "What? Not dressed? 'Swounds, what an idle fellow! No matter, boy; let me in at once.!" Ebenezer recognized the voice, which he'd not heard for three years. "Henry!" he cried, and threw open the door. " 'Tis no other," laughed Burlingame, giving him a squeeze. "Marry, what a lout thou'rt grown to! A good six feet! And abed at this hour!" He felt the young man's forehead. "Yet you've no fever. What ails thee, lad? Ah well, no matter. One moment -" He ran to the window and peered cautiously below. "Ah, there's the rascal! Hither, Eben!" Ebenezer hurried to the window. "Whatever is't?" "Yonder, yonder!" Burlingame pointed up the street. "Coming by the little dram-shop! Know you that gentleman with the hickory-stick ?" Ebenezer saw a long-faced man of middle age, gowned as a don, making his way down the street. "Nay, 'tis no Magdalene Fellow. The face is strange." "Shame on thee, then, and mark it well. 'Tis Isaac himself, from Trinity." "Newton!" Ebenezer looked with sharper: interest. "I've not seen him before, but word hath it the Royal Society is bringing out a book of his within the month that will explain the workings of the entire universe! I'faith, I thank you for your haste! But did I hear you call him rascal?" Burlingame laughed again, "You mistake the reason for my haste, Eben. I pray God my face hath altered these fifteen years, for I'm certain Brother Isaac caught sight of me ere I reached your entryway." "Is't possible you know him?" asked Ebenezer, much impressed. "Know him? I was once near raped by him. Stay!" He drew back from the window. "Keep an eye on him, and tell me how I might escape should he turn in at your door." "No difficulty: the door of this chamber lets onto an open stairway in the rear. What in Heav'n's afoot, Henry?" "Don't be alarmed," Burlingame said. " 'Tis a pretty story, and I'll tell it all presently. Is he coming?" "One moment - he's just across from us. There. Nay, wait now - he is saluting another don. Old Bagley, the Latinist. There now, he's moving on." Burlingame came to the window, and the two of them watched the great man continue up the street. "Not another moment, Henry," Ebenezer declared. "Tell me at once what mystery is behind this hide-and-seek, and behind thy cruel haste to leave us three years past, or watch me perish of curiosity!" "Aye and I shall," Burlingame replied, "directly you dress yourself, lead us to food and drink, and give full account of yourself. 'Tis not I alone who have excuses to find." "How! Then you know of my failure?" "Aye, and came to see what's what, and perchance to birch some sense into you." "But how can that be? I told none but Anna." "Stay, you'll hear all, I swear't. But not a word till I've a spread of sack and mutton. Let not excitement twist thy values, lad -come on with you!" "Ah, bless you, thou'rt an Iliad Greek, Henry," Ebenezer said, and commenced dressing. They went to an inn nearby, where over small beer after dinner Ebenezer explained, as best he could, his failure at the College and subsequent indecisions. "The heart of't seems to be," he concluded, "that in no matter of import can I make up my mind. The moment I grow sensible that I must choose, I see such virtues in each alternative that none outshines the rest. Marry, Henry, how I've needed thy counsel! What agonies you might have saved me!" "Nay," Burlingame protested. "You well know I love you, Eben, and feel your afflictions as my own. But advice, I swear't, is the wrong medicine for your malady, for two reasons: first, the logic of the problem is such that at some remove or other you'd have still to choose, inasmuch as should I counsel you to come with me to London, you yet must choose whether to follow my counsel; and should I farther counsel you to follow my first counsel, you must yet choose to follow my second - the regress is infinite and goes nowhere. Second, e'en could you choose to follow my counsel, 'tis no cure at all, but a mere crutch to lean upon. The object is to put you on your feet, not to take you off them. 'Tis a serious affair, Eben; it troubles me. What are your own sentiments about your failure?" . "I must own I have none," Ebenezer said, "though I can fancy many." "And this indecision: how do you feel about yourself?" "Marry, I know not! I suppose I'm merely curious." Burlingame frowned and called for a pipe of tobacco from a wine-drawer working near at hand. "You were indeed the picture of apathy when I found you. Doth it not gall or grieve you to lose the baccalaureate, when you'd approached so near it?" "In a manner, I suppose," Ebenezer smiled. "And yet the man I most respect hath got on without it, hath he not?" Burlingame laughed. "My dear fellow, I see 'tis time I told you many things. Will it comfort you to learn that I, too, suffer from your disease, and have since childhood?" "Nay, that cannot be," Ebenezer said. "Ne'er have I seen thee falter, Henry: thou'rt the very antithesis of indecision! 'Tis to you I look in envy, and despair of e'er attaining such assurance." "Let me be your hope, not your despair, for just as a mild siege of smallpox, though it scar a man's face, leaves him safe forever from dying of that ailment, so inconstancy, fickleness, a periodic shifting of enthusiasms, though a vice, may preserve a man from crippling indecision." "Fickleness, Henry?" Ebenezer asked in wonderment. "Is't fickleness explains your leaving us?" "Not in the sense you take it," Burlingame said. He fetched out a shilling and called for two more tankards of beer. "I say, did you know I was an orphan child?" "Why, yes," Ebenezer said, surprised. "Now you mention it, I believe I did, though I can't recall your ever telling us. Haply we just assumed it. l'faith, Henry, all the years we've known you, and yet in sooth we know naught of you, do we? I've no idea when you were born, or where reared, or by whom." "Or why I left you so discourteously, or how I learned of your failure, or why I fled the great Mister Newton," Burlingame added. "Very well then, take a draught with me, and I shall uncloak the mystery. There's a good fellow!" They drank deeply, and Burlingame began his story. "I've not the faintest notion where I was born, or even when though it must have been about 1654. Much less do I know what woman bore me, or what man got me on her. I was raised by a Bristol sea-captain and his wife, who were childless, and 'tis my suspicion I was born in either America or the West Indies, for my earliest memories are of an ocean passage when I was no more than three years old. Their name was Salmon - Avery and Melissa Salmon. " "I am astonished!" Ebenezer declared. "I ne'er dreamed aught so extraordinary of your beginnings! How came you to be called Burlingame, then?" Burlingame sighed. "Ah, Eben, just as till now you've been incurious about my origin, so till too late was I. Burlingame I've been since earliest memory, and, as is the way of children, it ne'er occurred to me to wonder at it, albeit to this day I've met no other of that surname." "It must be that whomever Captain Salmon received you from was your parent!" Ebenezer said. "Or haply 'twas some kin of yours, that knew your name." "Dear Eben, think you I've not racked. myself upon that chance? Think you I'd not forfeit a hand for five minutes' converse with my poor Captain, or gentle Melissa? But I must put by my curiosity till Judgment Day, for they both are in their graves." "Unlucky fellow!" "All through my childhood," Burlingame went on, " 'twas my single aim to go to sea, like Captain Salmon. Boats were my only toys; sailors my only playmates. On my thirteenth birthday I shipped as messboy on the Captain's vessel, a West Indiaman, and so taken was I by the mariner's life that I threw my heart and soul into my apprenticeship. Ere we raised Barbados I was scrambling aloft with the best of 'em, to take in a stuns'l or tar the standing rigging, and was as handy with a fid as any Jack aboard. Eben, Eben, what a life for a lad - e'en now it shivers me to think on't! Brown as a coffee-bean I was, and agile as a monkey, and ere my voice had left off changing, ere my parts were fully haired - at an age when most boys have still the smell of the womb on 'em, and dream of traveling to the neighboring shire - I had dived for sheepswool sponges on the Great Bahaman Banks and fought with pirates in the Gulf of Paria. What's more, after guarding my innocence in the fo'c'sle with a fishknife from a lecherous old Manxman who'd offered two pounds for't, I swam a mile through shark-water from-our mooring off Curayao to squander it one August night with a mulatto girl upon the beach. She was scarce thirteen, Eben - half Dutch, half Indian, lissome and trembly as an eight-month colt - but on receipt of a little brass spyglass of mine, which she'd taken a great fancy to in the village that morning, she fetched up her skirts with a laugh, and I deflowered her under the sour-orange trees. I was not yet fifteen. " "Gramercy!" "No man e'er loved his trade more than I," Burlingame continued, "nor slaved at it more diligently; I was the apple of the Captain's eye, and would, I think, have risen fast through the ranks. " "Then out on't, Henry, how is't you claim my failing? For I see naught in thy tale here but a staggering industry and single-mindedness, the half of which I'd lose an ear to equaL" Burlingame smiled and drank off the last of his beer: "Inconstancy, dear fellow, inconstancy. That same singlemindedness that raised me o'er the other lads on the ship was the ruin of my nautical career." "How can that be 1" "I made five voyages in all," Burlingame said. "On the fifth - the same voyage on which I lost my virginity - we lay becalmed one day in the horse latitudes off the Canary Islands, and quite by chance, looking about for something wherewith to occupy myself, I happened on a copy of Motteux's Don Quixote among a shipmate's effects; I spent the remainder of the day with it, for though Mother Salmon had taught me to read and write, 'twas the first real storybook I'd read. I grew so entranced by the great Manchegan and his faithful squire as to lose all track of time and was rebuked by Captain Salmon for reporting late to the cook. "From that day on I was no longer a seaman, but a student. I read every book I could find aboard ship and in port - bartered my clothes, mortgaged my pay for books, on any subject whatever, and reread them over and over when no new ones could be found. All else went by the board; what work I could be made to do I did distractedly, and in careless haste. I took to hiding, in the rope-locker or the lazarette, where I could read for an hour undisturbed ere I was found. Finally Captain Salmon could tolerate it no more: he ordered the mate to confiscate every volume aboard, save only the charts, the ship's log, and the navigational tables, and pitched 'em to the sharks off Port-au-Prince; then he gave me such a hiding for my sins that my poor bum tingled a fortnight after, and forbade me e'er to read a printed page aboard his vessel. This so thwarted and aggrieved me, that at the next port (which happened to be Liverpool) I jumped ship and left career and benefactor forever, with not a thank-ye nor a fare-thee-well for the people who'd fed and clothed me since baby-hood. "I had no money at all, and for food only a great piece of hard cheese I'd stolen from the ship's cook: therefore I very soon commenced to starve. I took to standing on streetcorners and singing for my supper: I was a pretty lad and knew many a song, and when I would sing What Thing is Love? to the ladies, or A Pretty Duck There Was to the gentlemen, 'twas not often they'd pass me by without a smile and tuppence. At length a band of wandering gypsies, traveling down from Scotland to London, heard me sing and invited me to join them, and so for the next year I worked and lived with those curious people. They were tinkers, horse-traders, fortune-tellers, basket-makers, dancers, troubadours, and thieves. I dressed in their fashion, ate, drank, and slept with them, and they taught me all their songs and tricks. Dear Eben! Had you seen me then, you'd ne'er have doubted for an instant I was one of them!" "I am speechless," Ebenezer declared. "'Tis the grandest adventure I have heard!" "We worked our way slowly, with many digressions, from Liverpool through Manchester, Sheffield, Nottingham, Leicester, aria Bedford, sleeping in the wagons when it rained or out under the stars on fine nights. In the troupe of thirty souls I was the only one who read and wrote, and so was of great assistance to them in many ways. Once to their great delight I read them tales out of Boccaccio - they all love to tell and hear stories - and they were so surprised to learn that books contain such marvelous pleasantries, a thing which erst they'd not suspected, that they began to steal every book they could find for me: I seldom lacked reading that year! It happened one day they turned up a primer, and I taught the lot of 'em their letters, for which services they were unimaginably grateful. Despite my being a 'gorgio' (by which name they call non-gypsies) they initiated me into their most privy matters and expressed the greatest desire for me to marry into their group and travel with them forever. "But late in 1670 we arrived here in Cambridge, having wandered down from Bedford. The students and several of the dons took a great fancy to us, and though they made too free with sundry of our women, they treated us most cordially, even bringing us to their rooms to sing and play for them. Thus were my eyes first opened to the world of learning and scholarship, and I knew on the instant that my interlude with the gypsies was done. I resolved to go no farther: I bid adieu to my companions and remained in Cambridge,. determined to starve upon the street corners rather than leave this magnificent place." "Marry, Henry!" Ebenezer said. "Thy courage brings me nigh to weeping! What did you then?" "Why, soon as my belly commenced to rumble I stopped short where I was (which happened to be over by Christ's College) and broke into Flow My Tears, it being of all the songs I knew the most plaintive. And when I had done with the last verse of it -
Hark! yon Shadows that in Darkness dwell, Learn to contemn Light. Happy, happy they that in Hell Feel not the World's Despite.
- when I had done, I say, there appeared at a nearby window a lean frowning don, who enquired of me, What manner of Cainite was I, that I counted them happy who must fry forever in the fires of Hell? And another, who came to the window beside him, a fat wight, asked me, Did I not know where I was? To which I answered, 'I know no more, good masters, than that I am in Cambridge Town and like to perish of my belly! Then the first don, who all unbeknownst to me was having a merry time at my expense, told me I was in Christ's College, and that he and all his fellows were powerful divines, and that for lesser blasphemies than mine they had caused men to be broke upon the wheel. I was a mere sixteen then, and not a little alarmed, for though I,d read enough scarce to credit their story, yet I knew not but what they could work me some iniury or other, e'en were't something short of the wheel. Therefore I humbly craved their pardon, and pled 'twas but an idle song, the words of which I scarce attended; so that were there aught of blasphemy in't, 'twas not the singer should be racked for't but the author, John Dowland, who being long since dead must needs already have had the sin rendered out of him in Satan's try-works, and there's an end on't! At this methinks the merry dons had like to laugh aloud, but they put on sterner faces yet and ordered me into their chamber. There they farther chastised me, maintaining that while my first offense had been grievous enough, in its diminution of the torments of Hell, this last remark of mine had on't the very smell of the stake. 'How is that?' I asked them. 'Why,' the lean one cried, 'to hold as you do that they who perpetuate another's sin, albeit witlessly, are themselves blameless, is to deny the doctrine of Original Sin itself, for who are Eve and Adam but the John Dowlands of us all, whose sinful song all humankind must sing willy-nilly and diefor't?' 'What is more,' the fat don declared, 'in denying the mystery of Original Sin you scorn as well the mystery of Vicarious Atonement - for where's the sense of Salvation for them that are not lost?' "'Nay, nay!' said I, and commenced to sniffling. 'Marry, masters, 'twas but an idle observation! Prithee take no notice of 't !' " 'An idle observation!' the first replied, and laid hold of my arms. 'Swounds, boy ! You scoff at the two cardinal mysteries of the Church, which like twin pillars bear the entire edifice of Christendom; you as much as call the Crucifixion a vulgar Mayfair show; and to top all you regard such unspeakable blasphemies as idle observations ! 'Tis a more horrendous sin yetI Whence came thee here, anyhow?' "'From Bedford,' I replied, frightened near out of my wits, 'with a band of gypsies.' On hearing this the dons feigned consternation, and declared that every year at this time the gypsies passed through Cambridge for the sole purpose, since they are heathen to a man, of working some hurt on the divines. Only the year before, they said, one of my cohorts had sneaked privily into the Trinity brew-house and poisoned a vat of beer, with the result that three Senior Fellows, four Scholars, and a brace of idle Sizars were done to death ere sundown. Then they asked me, What was my design? And when I told them I had hoped to attach myself to one of their number as a serving-boy, the better to improve my mind, they made out I was come to poison the lot of 'em. So saying, they stripped me naked on the spot, despite my protestations of innocence, and on pretext of seeking hidden phials of vitriol they poked and probed every inch of my person, and pinched and tweaked me in alarming places. Nay, I must own they laid lecherous hands upon me, and had soon done me a violence bul that their sport was interrupted by another don - an aging, saintlike gentleman, clearly their superior - who bade them stand off and rebuked them for molesting me. I flung myself at his feet, and, raising me up and looking at me from top to toe, he enquired, What was the occasion of my being disrobed? I replied, I had but sung a song to please these gentlemen, the which they had called a blasphemy, and had then so diligently searched me for phials of vitriol, that I looked to be costive the week through. "The old don then commanded me to sing the song at once, that he might judge of its blasphemy, and so I fetched up my guitar, which the gypsies had taught me the use of, and as best I could (for I was weeping and shivering with fright) I once again sang FlowMy Tears. Throughout the piece my savior smiled on me sweetly as an angel, and when I was done he spoke not a word about blasphemy, but kissed me upon the forehead, bade me dress, and after reproving again my tormentors, who were mightily ashamed at being thus surprised in their evil prank, he commanded me to go with him to his quarters. What's more, after interrogating me at length concerning my origin and my plight, and expressing surprise and pleasure at the extent of my reading, he then and there made me a member of his household staff, to serve him personally, and allowed me free use of his admirable library." "I must know who this saintly fellow was," Ebenezer interrupted. "My curiosity leaps its banksl" Burlingame smiled and raised a finger. "I shall tell thee, Eben; but not a word of't must you repeat, for reasons you'll see presently. Whate'er his failings, 'twas a noble turn he did me, and I'd not see his name besmirched by any man." "Never fear," Ebenezer assured him. " 'Twill be like whispering it to thyself." "Very well, then. I shall tell thee only that he was Platonist to the ears, and hated Tom Hobbes as he hated the Devil, and was withal so fixed on things of the spirit - on essential spissitude and indiscerptibility and metaphysical extension and the like, which were as real to him as rocks and cow-patties - that he scarce lived in this world at all. And should these be still not sufficient clues, know finally that he was at that time much engrossed in a grand treatise against the materialist philosophy, which treatise he printed the following year under the title Enchiridion Metaphysicum. " " 'Sheartl" Ebenezer whispered. "My dear friend, was't Henry More himself you sang for? I should think 'twould be thy boast, not an embarrassment !" "Stay, till I end my tale. 'Twas in sooth great More himself I lived with ! None knows more than I his noble character, and none is more a debtor to his generosity. I was then perhaps seventeen: I tried in every way I knew to be a model of intelligence, good manners, and industry, and ere long the old fellow would allow no other servant near him. He took great pleasure in conversing with me, at first about my adventures at sea and with the gypsies, but later on matters of philosophy and theology, with which subjects I made special effort to acquaint myself. 'Twas plain he'd conceived a great liking for me." "Thou'rt a lucky wight, i'faithl" Ebenezer sighed. "Nay; only hear me out. As time went on he no longer addressed me as 'Dear Henry,' or 'My boy,' but rather 'My son,' and 'My dear'; and after that 'Dearest thing,' and finally 'Thingums,' 'Precious laddikins,' and 'Gypsy mine' in turn. In short, as I soon guessed, his affection for me was Athenian as his philosophy - dare I tell you he more than once caressed me, and called me his little Alcibiades ?" "I am amazed!" said Ebenezer. "The scoundrel rescued you from the other blackguards, merely to have you for his own unnatural lusts!" "Oh, la, 'twas not at all the same thing, Eben. The others were men in their thirties, full to bursting (as my master himself put it) with the filth and unclean tinctures of corporeity. More, on the other hand, was near sixty, the gentlest of souls, and scarce realized himself, I daresay, the character of his passion: I had no fear of him at all. And here I must confess, Eben, I did a shameful thing: so intent was I on entering the University, that instead of leaving More's service as soon as tact would permit, I lost no opportunity to encourage his shameful doting. I would perch on the arm of his chair like an impudent lass and read over his shoulder, or cover his eyes for a tease, or spring about the room like a monkey knowing he admired my energy and grace. Most of all I sang and played on my guitar for him: many's the night - I blush to tell it! -when I would let him come upon me, as though by accident; I would laugh and blush, and then as if to make a lark of't, take my guitar and sing Flow My Tears. "Need I say the poor philosopher was simply ravished? His passion so took governance o'er his other faculties, he grew so entirely enamored of me, that upon my granting him certain trifling favors, which I knew he'd long coveted but scarce hoped for, he spent nearly all his meager savings to outfit me like the son of an earl, and enrolled me in Trinity College." Here Burlingame lit another pipe, and sighed in remembrance. "I was, I believe, uncommonly welt-read for a boy my age. In the two years with More I'd mastered Latin, Greek, and Hebrew, read all of Plato, Tully, Plotin, and divers other of the ancients, and at least perused most of the standard works of natural philosophy. .My benefactor made no secret that he looked for me to become as notable a philosopher as Herbert of Cherbury, John Smith, or himself - and who knows but what I might have been, had things turned out happily? But alas, Eben, that same shamelessness by virtue of which I reached my goal proved my undoing. 'Twas quite poetic." "What happened, pray?" "I was not strong in mathematics," Burlingame said, "and for that reason I devoted much of my study to that subject, and spent as much time as I could with mathematicians - especially with the brilliant young man who but two years before, in 1669, had taken Barrow's place as Lucasian Professor of Mathematics, and holds the office yet. . . ." "Newton!" "Aye, the wondrous Isaac! He was twenty-nine or thirty then, as I am now, with a face like a pure-bred stallion's. He was thin and strong and marvelous energetic, much given to moods; he had the arrogance that oft goes with great gifts, but was in other ways quite shy, and seldom overbearing. He could be merciless with others' theories, yet was himself inordinately sensitive to criticism. He was so diffident about his talents 'twas with great reluctance he allowed aught of his discoveries to be printed; yet so vain, the slightest suggestion that someone had antedated him would drive him near mad with rage and jealousy. Impossible, splendid fellow !" "Marry, he frightens me I" Ebenezer said. "Now you must know that at that time More and Newton had no love whatever for each other, and the cause of their enmity was the French philosopher Renatus Descartes." "Descartes? How can that be?" "I know not how well you've heeded your tutors," Burlingame said; "you might know that all these Platonical gentlemen of Christ's and Emmanuel Colleges are wont to sing the praises of Descartes, inasmuch as he makes a great show of pottering about in mathematics and the motions of heavenly bodies, like any Galileo, and yet unlike Tom Hobbes he affirms the real existence of God and the soul, which pleases them no end. The more for that the lot of 'em are Protestants: this much vaunted rejection of the learning of his time, that Renatus brags of in his Discourse on Method: this searching of his innards for his axioms - is't not the first principle of Protestantism? Thus it is that Descartes' system is taught allover Cambridge, and More, like the rest, praised and swore by him as by a latter-day saint. Tell me, Eben: how is't, d'you think, that the planets are moved in their courses?" "'Why," said Ebenezer, " 'tis that the cosmos is filled with little particles moving in vortices, each of which centers on a star; and 'tis the subtle push and pull of these particles in our solar vortex that slides the planets along their orbs - is't not?" "So saith Descartes," Burlingame smiled. "And d'you haply recall what is the nature of light ?" "If I have't right," replied Ebenezer, " 'tis an aspect of the vortices - of the press of inward and outward forces in 'em. The celestial fire is sent through space from the vortices by this pressure, which imparts a transitional motion to little light globules - " . "Which Renatus kindly hatched for that occasion," Burlingame interrupted. "And what's more he allows his globules both a rectilinear and a rotatory motion. If only the first occurs when the globules smite our retinae, we see white light; if both, we see color. And as if this were not magical enough - mirabile dictuel - when the rotatory motion surpasseth the rectilinear, we see blue; when the reverse, we see red; and when the twain are equal, we see yellow. What fantastical drivel!" "You mean 'tis not the truth? I must say, Henry, it sounds reasonable to me. In sooth, there is a seed of poetry in it; it hath an elegance." "Aye, it hath every virtue and but one small defect, which is, that such is not the case: the universe doth not operate in that wise. Marry, 'tis no crime, methinks, to teach the man's skeptical philosophy or his analytical geometry - both have much of merit in 'em. But his cosmology is purely fanciful, his optics downright bizarre; and the first man to prove it is Isaac Newton. " "Hence their enmity?" asked Ebenezer. Burlingame nodded. "By the time Newton became Lucasian Professor he had already spoilt Cartesian optics with his prism experiments - and well do I recall them from his lectures I and he was refuting the theory of vortices by mathematics, though he hadn't as yet published his own cosmical hypotheses. But his loathing for Descartes goes deeper yet: it hath its origin in a difference betwixt their temperaments. Descartes, you know, is a clever writer, and hath a sort of genius for illustration that lends force to the wildest hypotheses. He is a great hand for twisting the cosmos to fit his theory. Newton, on the other hand, is a patient and brilliant experimenter, with a sacred regard for the facts of nature. Then again, since the lectures De Motu Corporum and his papers on the nature of light have been available, the man always held up to him by his critics is Descartes. "So, then, no love was lost 'twixt Newton and More; they had in fact been quietly hostile to each other for some years. And when I became the focus of't, their antagonism boiled over." "You? But you were a simple student, were you not? Surely two such giants ne'er would stoop to fight their battles with their students." "Must I draw a picture, Eben ?" Burlingame said. "I was out to learn the nature of the universe from Newton, but knowing I was More's protege, he was cold and incommunicative with me. I employed every strategy I knew to remove this barrier, and, alas, won more than I'd fought for - in plain English, Eben, Newton grew as enamored of me as had More, with this difference only, that there was naught Platonical in his passion." "I know not what to thinkl" cried Ebenezer. "Nor did I," said Burlingame, "albeit one thing I knew well, which was that save for the impersonal respect I bare the twain of 'em, I cared not a fart for either. 'Tis a wise thing, Eben, not to confuse one affection with another. Well, sir, as the months passed, each of my swains came to realize the passions of the other, and both grew as jealous as Cervantes' Celoso Extremefio. They carried on shamefully, and each threatened my ruination in the University should I not give o'er the other. As for me, I paid no more heed than necessary to either, but wallowed in the libraries of the colleges like a dolphin in the surf. 'Twas job enough for me to remember to eat and sleep, much less fulfill the million little obligations they thought lowed 'em.l'faith, a handsome pair!" "Prithee, what was the end of it !" Burlingame sighed. "I played the one against the other for above two years, till at last Newton could endure it no longer. The Royal Society had by this time published his experiments with prisms and reflecting telescopes, and he was under fire from Robert Hooke, who had light theories of his own; from the Dutchman Christian Huygens, who was committed to the lens telescope; from the French monk Pardies; and from the Belgian Linus. So disturbed was he by the conjunction of this criticism and his jealousy, that in one and the same day he swore ne'er to publish another of his discoveries, and confronted More in the latter's chambers with the intent of challenging him to settle their rivalry for good and all by means of a duel to the death!" , "Ah, what a loss to the world, whate'er the issue of't!" observed Ebenezer. "As't happened, no blood was let," Burlingame said: "the tale ends happily for them both, if not for the teller. After much discourse Newton discovered that his rival's position was uncertain as his own, and that I seemed equally indifferent to both - which conclusion, insofar as't touches the particular matters they had in mind, is as sound as any in the Principia. In addition More showed to Newton his Enchiridion Metaphysicum, wherein he plainly expressed a growing disaffection for Descartes; and Newton assured More that albeit 'twas universal gravitation, and not angels or vortices, that steered the planets in their orbits, there yet remained employment enough for the Deity as a first cause to set the cosmic wheels a-spin, e'en as old Renatus had declared. In fine, so far from dueling to the death, they so convinced each other that at the end of some hours of colloquy - all of which I missed, being then engrossed in the library - they fell to tearful embraces, and decided then and there to cut me off without a penny, arrange my dismissal from the College, and move into the same lodgings, where, so they declared, they would couple the splendors of the physical world to the glories of the ideal, and listen ravished to the music of the spheres! This last they never did in fact, but their connection endures to this day, and from all I hear, More hath washed his hands entirely of old Descartes, while Newton hath caught a foolish infatuation with theology, and seeks to explain the Apocalypse by application of his laws of series and fluxions. As for the first two of their resolves, they fulfilled 'em to the letter - turned me out to starve, and so influenced all and sundry against me that not a shilling could I beg, nor eat one meal on credit. 'Twas off to London I went, with not a year 'twixt me and the baccalaureate. Thus was it, in 1676, upon my advertising my desire for employment, that your father found me; and playing fickle to the scholar's muse, I turned to you and your dear sister all the zeal I'd erst reserved for my researches. Your instruction became my First Good, my Primary Cause, which lent to all else its form and order. And my fickleness is thorough and entire: not for an instant have I regretted the way of my life, or thought wistfully of Cambridge." "Dear, dear Henry I" Ebenezer cried. "How thy tale moves me, and shames me, that I let slip through idleness what you strove so hard in vain to reach! Would God I had another chance!" "Nay, Eben, thou'rt no scholar, I fear. You have perchance the schoolman's love of lore, but not the patience, not the address, not I fear that certain nose for relevance, that grasp of the world, which sets apart the thinker from the crank. There is a thing in you, a set of the grain as 'twere, that would keep you ingenuous even if all the books in all the libraries of Europe were distilled in your brain. Nay, let the baccalaureate go; I came here not to exhort you to try again, or to chide you for failing, but to take you with me to London for a time, until you see your way clearly. 'Twas Anna's idea, who loves you more than herself, and I thinkit wise." "Precious Annal How came she to know thy whereabouts !" "There, now," laughed Burlingame, "that is another tale entirely, and 'twill do for another time. Come with me to London, and I'll tell it thee in the carriage." Ebenezer hesitated. " 'Tis a great step." "'Tis a great world and a short life!" replied Burlingame. "A pox on all steps but great ones !" "I fear me what Father would say, did he hear of't." "My dear fellow," Burlingame said caustically, "we sit here on a blind rock careening through space; we are all of us rushing headlong to the grave. Think you the worms will care, when anon they make a meal of you, whether you spent your moment sighing wigless in your chamber, or sacked the golden towns of Montezuma ! Lookee, the day's nigh spent; 'tis gone careening into time forever. Not a tale's length past we lined our bowels with dinner, and already they growl for more. We are dying men, Ebenezer: i'faith, there's time for naught but bold resolves !" "You lend me courage, Henry," Ebenezer said, rising from the table. "Let us begone."
Ah, thank you for the explanation. Being enamored of the Wasp's friend Swift, I was familiar with the style, it was the target I was failing to grasp. I'd assumed something more significant, along the lines of googling for "miserable failure". Try it and smile.
The Bush administration has radically redefined America's nuclear use policy , : U.S. nuclear weapons are no longer regarded as qualitatively different from conventional weapons. Many actions of the administration in recent years strongly suggest that an imminent U.S. nuclear use is being planned for, and this was confirmed by Bush's explicit refusal to rule out a U.S. nuclear strike against Iran. We have all been put on notice. The fact that North Korea is now a nuclear country does not change the agenda – quite the contrary. [Hermit: I agree strongly with this assessment. I suspect that the agenda is first to whack Israel's enemy (on the off chance that the internal outcry after we have used nukes prevents their reuse), then we engage in nuclear blackmail and if we think it necessary, nuking the DPRK, gambling that neither China nor Russia will come to North Korea's aid, and assuming that any repercussions will be easily shrugged off on the basis that the rest of the world still needs America more than we need the rest of the world. We will use our carrier force to push Iran until it does something stupid or allows us to claim it was about to, as a pretext for our initial strikes (as if we have never done that before, think Pearl Harbor and The "Cuban Crises" (which should have been called the "Turkey Crises") for two recent examples), and threaten them with worse if they react. If it goes beyond Iran, Bush and Co believe the above is necessary, that we are all doomed anyway, that we do have much nastier weapons on hand, and that nobody is going to put them on trial; but that if Iran does anything in return, the US will demolish it and if anyone survives, execute them as examples. I would remind you that there is no ethical difference I can detect between these opinions and those held in Berlin in 1939. This might once have dissuaded American leaders and their coterie from acting similarly, Nonetheless, we have the terrified excuse of a quasi-human spewing rubbish in defense of torture, murder, and illegality all over the "Serious Business Forum" to remind us that the neocons can, no matter where they start out, easily self-justify any atrocity they like.]
There were fears that the U.S. would use nuclear weapons in the Iraq attack , , fears that did not materialize. Hence some will argue that the current fears of a nuclear strike against Iran may not materialize either. Some will argue that there were many other occasions in the past 60 years when the U.S. appeared to come close to using nuclear weapons and did not , , that the threshold for using nuclear weapons always was and remains extraordinarily high, and that the nuclear "saber-rattling" is just trickery to scare our opponents ("madman theory"). These arguments are wrong. The U.S. is closer than it has been since Nagasaki to using nuclear weapons again. This year, for the first time in its history, the American Physical Society, representing 40,000 members of the profession that created nuclear weapons, issued a statement of deep concern on this matter: "The American Physical Society is deeply concerned about the possible use of nuclear weapons against non-nuclear-weapon states and for preemptive counter-proliferation purposes."
In the case of Iraq, our adversary was so weak that there was no way the use of nuclear weapons could have been justified in the eyes of the world. Iran is different: it possesses missiles that could strike U.S. forces in Iraq and the Persian Gulf, as well as Israeli cities. Iran also has a large conventional army. The 150,000 U.S. soldiers in Iraq will be at great risk if there is a war with Iran, and Americans will support a nuclear strike on Iran once the administration creates a situation where it can argue that such action will save a large number of American lives.
No nuclear country is likely to intervene when the U.S. uses nuclear weapons against Iran, so there is no military deterrent. The U.S. has now achieved vast nuclear superiority and is about to demonstrate to the world that its $5 trillion nuclear arsenal is not "unusable." It is ignoring the fact that crossing the nuclear threshold in a war against Iran will trigger a chain reaction that in the coming years could lead to global nuclear war and widespread destruction of life on the planet.[Hermit: I would predict that if Hersch is correct, and I suspect and fear that he is, that the utter destruction of the USA, the global economy and what little Western civilization has been left by the neocons will follow with unimaginable swiftness. Under Bush, the religious fanatics will win such a win over the enlightenment as was never imagined possible, and will be left to bask, briefly, in their own radioactive glow of triumph.]
What is the benefit in making such policy declarations? The U.S. has never ruled out the use of nuclear weapons, and it carries a cost to remind other countries of this fact, since it provides an incentive for others to develop a nuclear capability. There is no reason to announce such ominous policy changes, unless the intention is to put them into practice, as when Bush announced in 2002 that "the United States will, if necessary, act preemptively" in preparation for the "preemptive" attack on Iraq.[Hermit: This is an important point because it clearly establishes mens re, intent, preparation and provocation on the part of the US].
The aforementioned Department of Defense Web site on "nuclear matters" states that "there are a number of arms control agreements restricting the deployment and use of nuclear weapons, but there is no conventional or customary international law that prohibits nations from employing nuclear weapons in armed conflict." That statement defines the "rules" by which the U.S. government plays. No matter that it ignores (and the Web site's list of "arms control agreements" also doesn't mention) the "negative security assurance" issued by the U.S. in 1978 and reaffirmed in 1995 promising not to use nuclear weapons against non-nuclear-weapons states. Nor that it ignores the 1996 ruling of the International Court of Justice.[Hermit: Which is important as it established the illegality of the use of nuclear weapons.]
The changes in policy have been openly declared in order to gauge public opinion, and to prepare the public for the implementation of this policy. Because reaction to these radical statements , , ,  unfortunately has been rather muted, the administration will be able to claim that the American people by and large have embraced the new nuclear doctrine of "integration" of nuclear and non-nuclear capabilities" and approve of the use of nuclear weapons when they provide "the most efficient use of force."[Hermit: I note that modern propaganda techniques and the abysmally poor levels of education have meant that the citizens of the United States were far easier to cow into acquiescence than the citizens of Germany were in the 1930s, and clearly sufficient of them have been nudged into such a state of terror by their government that they will support any action, from torture of anybody they are told is evil, to "pre-emptive" nuclear attacks on non-nuclear countries, if they can but be persuaded that this might make them safer.]
As Time magazine reported in its Aug. 20, 1945, issue right after the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, "One hundred and twenty-three planes, each bearing a single atomic bomb, would carry as much destructive power as all the bombs (2,453,595 tons) dropped by the Allies on Europe during the war." And this was beforehydrogen bombs. To the extent that the U.S. military will be able to replace conventional weapons by nuclear weapons to carry out its missions, it will have achieved the ultimate "downsizing." That is the key to Rumsfeld's "transformation of the military"; everything else is window-dressing.
"The decision as to the employment of atomic weapons in the event of war is to be made by the Chief Executive when he considers such decision to be required," according to NSC 30 from 1948. According to the Goldwater-Nichols Act, the chain of command flows from the president through the secretary of defense to the geographic combatant commanders. If Gen. John Abizaid (CENTCOM commander) or Gen. James Cartwright (STRATCOM commander) asks authorization from President Bush to use nuclear weapons, following the guidelines in the Doctrine for Joint Nuclear Operations, what will Bush's response be? As he often repeats, "I'm going to be listening to the people that know what they're talking about, and that's the commanders on the ground in Iraq. They'll make the decisions." The commanders on the ground will be driven by what they perceive to be the immediate military necessity, without regard to the larger issues such as the survival of the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty (NPT).
The potentially disastrous consequences of this action cannot be overestimated. Once the U.S. has used its nuclear weapons against a non-nuclear signatory of the NPT, the NPT will fall apart. Many more countries will strive to develop and test nuclear weapons, overtly or covertly, as North Korea has just done. With no nuclear taboo left, many more countries will feel entitled to use their nuclear weapons against nuclear and non-nuclear adversaries. Military conflicts inevitably lead to escalation, and they usually end only when one side prevails. That is not how a global nuclear conflict will end.
If the U.S. attacks Iran and does not use nuclear weapons, it will incur military losses that will vastly outweigh any benefits of such a war. If there is no Iran war, the Bush presidency will be remembered predominantly for the disastrous Iraq war. Crossing the nuclear threshold will overshadow all the other events of the Bush presidency. To the (however unlikely) extent that it results in an advantage to America, Bush's achievement could conceivably be hailed by future generations. The "rational" choice for the administration is clear.
Like desperate gamblers in a losing streak, Bush, Cheney, and Rumsfeld have nothing to gain and everything to lose by not attacking Iran with nuclear weapons.
Only Democratic Congress members have, however weakly, questioned the wisdom of the new U.S. nuclear weapons policies , , . No Republicans in Congress have done so, nor have they questioned the fact that the nuclear option against Iran is "on the table." This is not to say that Republican members of Congress would necessarily approve of the use of nuclear weapons against Iran; in fact, many if not most are likely to oppose it. And some Democratic members of Congress may be more hawkish than Republicans in regard to Iran , , . However, the principle of "party discipline" applies to both Republicans and Democrats, and the administration that is planning to use nuclear weapons against Iran is Republican.
A U.S. attack on Iran will lead to the use of nuclear weapons and will be disastrous for America. It is the path that Bush, Cheney, and Rumsfeld, on the advice of Kissinger, , are hell-bent on pursuing. Whether the military would refuse to carry out immoral orders is uncertain at best. Congress has a role to play, perhaps the most important one in its history.
...a University which both 6000 feet above sea level and 700 km from the coast is researching dolphins...
[Blunderov] Of course! What must have occurred is that something in the form of a salmon was mistaken for a dolphin. Salmon, and things of that form, are frequently mistaken for other things of that form. Sturgeon for instance. Here in Johannesburg we don't see very many fish at all, so it seems likely that this sort of mistaken identity would occur much more readily here on the Highveld than it does at the coast.
A recent thread on the dialectics of fun brought me to the realization that fun is jouissance and jouissance is fun. This not only solves the translation problem, but also makes it easier to present Lacan's ideas to eighteen-year-old American college freshman.
Jouissance : A French word which derives from the verb jouir meaning to have pleasure in, to enjoy, to appreciate, to savour; with a secondary meaning, as in English, of having rights and pleasures in the use of, as in the phrases “she enjoyed good health”, “she enjoyed a considerable fortune”, and “all citizens enjoy the right of freedom of expression”. The derived noun, jouissance, has three current meanings in French: it signifies an extreme or deep pleasure; it signifies sexual orgasm; and in law, it signifies having the right to use something, as in the phrase avoir la jouissance de quelquechose.
The interpretation of fun as "extreme or deep pleasure" is unproblematic, and certainly sexual orgasm is fun. (When asked where her husband is, for example, a wife might say "Right now I'd guess he's off having fun with some little whore.") Only the third meaning of jouissance superficially seems wrong for "fun", but consider these usages:
Since 1919 American women have had the fun of voting.
I am now experiencing the fun of home-ownership.
In their prime the Dakota had dominated much of the West, but after Little Big Horn the fun was over.
"Fun", of course, can be painful -- e.g., the expressions "too much fun" or sentences of the type "He had so much fun that he couldn't get out of bed for three days". Lacan recognizes this:
Jouissance, for Lacan, is not a purely pleasurable experience but arises through augmenting sensation to a point of discomfort (as in the sexual act, where the cry of passion is at times indistinguishable from the cry of pain), or as in running a marathon.
The brings us to the third paradigm (after the imaginarisation and the signifiantisation) --
the paradigm of the impossible jouissance, that is, real jouissance. Lacan considered this Seminar as effecting a sort of scission. It constitutes a privileged reference as far as it bespeaks his third attribution to jouissance - assigned to The Real.
Now, the Real, (le real) is, of course a fish -- specifically, a kind of sturgeon , as I have shown. But Lacan does not speak of le real, of course, but la real. In other words, contrary to his usual practice he uses ordinary language and not technical language. Furthermore, he speaks not of a sturgeon, but of a salmon:
But sometimes desire is not to be conjured away, but appears as here, at the centre of the stage, all too visibly, on the festive board, in the form of a salmon.* It is an attractive-looking fish, and if it is presented, as is the custom in restaurants, under a thin gauze, the raising of this gauze creates a similar effect to that which occurred at the culmination of the ancient mysteries.
Now, why did Lacan engauze his real meaning this way? Why did he occult le real (the sturgeon), hiding it behind la real and the salmon?
Well, ancient mysteries are like that. And if he just flopped un real real on your plate, that wouldn't be the elusive object of desire any more, would it?
[John Emerson has asserted the moral right to identify Pseudo-Kotsko as the author of this post.]
* [Bl.]The salmon is of course a very stupid fish which swims up waterfalls with the express intention of killing itself whether it succeeds or not.** Humans do not do this and are therefore considered intelligent; by humans anyway. Dolphins don't do this either so it must have been a salmon.
** It may also be that a dread anthropomorphism has slipped its way into the interpretation of the original goldfish-meets-Free-Willy data set. We know that these were not suicide attempts how? Post mortem cluster sampling interviews of their families? Given that Dubya has declared this methodology to be pretty much discredited it seems unlikely that the researchers would have bothered with the option. So, it is by no means certain that goldfish are not at least as stupid as salmon. Looks like dolphins might be off the hook on this one.
Source: Harpers Authors: Daniel Ellsberg Dated: 2006-10-19
A hidden crisis is under way. Many government insiders are aware of serious plans for war with Iran, but Congress and the public remain largely in the dark. The current situation is very like that of 1964, the year preceding our overt, open-ended escalation of the Vietnam War, and 2002, the year leading up to the U.S. invasion of Iraq.
In both cases, if one or more conscientious insiders had closed the information gap with unauthorized disclosures to the public, a disastrous war might have been averted entirely.
My own failure to act, in time, to that effect in 1964 was pointed out to me by Wayne Morse thirty-five years ago. Morse had been one of only two U.S. senators to vote against the Tonkin Gulf resolution on August 7, 1964. He had believed, correctly, that President Lyndon Johnson would treat the resolution as a congressional declaration of war. His colleagues, however, accepted White House assurances that the president sought “no wider war” and had no intention of expanding hostilities without further consulting them. They believed that they were simply expressing bipartisan support for U.S. air attacks on North Vietnam three days earlier, which the president and Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara had told them were in “retaliation” for the “unequivocal,” “unprovoked” attack by North Vietnamese torpedo boats on U.S. destroyers “on routine patrol” in “international waters.”
Each of the assurances above had been false, a conscious lie. That they were lies, though, had only been revealed to the public seven years later with the publication of the Pentagon Papers, several thousand pages of top-secret documents on U.S. decision-making in Vietnam that I had released to the press. The very first installment, published by the New York Times on June 13, 1971, had proven the official account of the Tonkin Gulf episode to be a deliberate deception.
When we met in September, Morse had just heard me mention to an audience that all of that evidence of fraud had been in my own Pentagon safe at the time of the Tonkin Gulf vote. (By coincidence, I had started work as a special assistant to an assistant secretary of defense the day of the alleged attack—which had not, in fact, occurred at all.) After my talk, Morse, who had been a senior member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee in 1964, said to me, “If you had given those documents to me at the time, the Tonkin Gulf resolution would never have gotten out of committee. And if it had somehow been brought up on the floor of the Senate for a vote, it would never have passed.”
He was telling me, it seemed, that it had been in my power, seven years earlier, to avert the deaths so far of 50,000 Americans and millions of Vietnamese, with many more to come. It was not something I was eager to hear. After all, I had just been indicted on what eventually were twelve federal felony counts, with a possible sentence of 115 years in prison, for releasing the Pentagon Papers to the public. I had consciously accepted that prospect in some small hope of shortening the war. Morse was saying that I had missed a real opportunity to prevent the war altogether.
My first reaction was that Morse had overestimated the significance of the Tonkin Gulf resolution and, therefore, the alleged consequences of my not blocking it in August. After all, I felt, Johnson would have found another occasion to get such a resolution passed, or gone ahead without one, even if someone had exposed the fraud in early August.
Years later, though, the thought hit me: What if I had told Congress and the public, later in the fall of 1964, the whole truth about what was coming, with all the documents I had acquired in my job by September, October, or November? Not just, as Morse had suggested, the contents of a few files on the events surrounding the Tonkin Gulf incident—all that I had in early August—but the drawerfuls of critical working papers, memos, estimates, and detailed escalation options revealing the evolving plans of the Johnson Administration for a wider war, expected to commence soon after the election. In short, what if I had put out before the end of the year, whether before or after the November election, all of the classified papers from that period that I did eventually disclose in 1971?
Had I done so, the public and Congress would have learned that Johnson’s campaign theme, “we seek no wider war,” was a hoax. They would have learned, in fact, that the Johnson Administration had been heading in secret toward essentially the same policy of expanded war that his presidential rival, Senator Barry Goldwater, openly advocated—a policy that the voters overwhelmingly repudiated at the polls.
I would have been indicted then, as I was seven years later, and probably imprisoned. But America would have been at peace during those years. It was only with that reflection, perhaps a decade after the carnage finally ended, that I recognized Morse had been right about my personal share of responsibility for the whole war.
Not just mine alone. Any one of a hundred officials—some of whom foresaw the whole catastrophe—could have told the hidden truth to Congress, with documents. Instead, our silence made us all accomplices in the ensuing slaughter.
* * *
The run-up to the 1964 Tonkin Gulf resolution was almost exactly parallel to the run-up to the 2002 Iraq war resolution.
In both cases, the president and his top Cabinet officers consciously deceived Congress and the public about a supposed short-run threat in order to justify and win support for carrying out preexisting offensive plans against a country that was not a near-term danger to the United States. In both cases, the deception was essential to the political feasibility of the program precisely because expert opinion inside the government foresaw costs, dangers, and low prospects of success that would have doomed the project politically if there had been truly informed public discussion beforehand. And in both cases, that necessary deception could not have succeeded without the obedient silence of hundreds of insiders who knew full well both the deception and the folly of acting upon it.
One insider aware of the Iraq plans, and knowledgeable about the inevitably disastrous result of executing those plans, was Richard Clarke, chief of counterterrorism for George W. Bush and adviser to three presidents before him. He had spent September 11, 2001, in the White House, coordinating the nation’s response to the attacks. He reports in his memoir, Against All Enemies, discovering the next morning, to his amazement, that most discussions there were about attacking Iraq.
Clarke told Bush and Rumsfeld that Iraq had nothing to do with 9/11, or with its perpetrator, Al Qaeda. As Clarke said to Secretary of State Colin Powell that afternoon, “Having been attacked by al Qaeda, for us now to go bombing Iraq in response”—which Rumsfeld was already urging—“would be like our invading Mexico after the Japanese attacked us at Pearl Harbor.”
Actually, Clarke foresaw that it would be much worse than that. Attacking Iraq not only would be a crippling distraction from the task of pursuing the real enemy but would in fact aid that enemy: “Nothing America could have done would have provided al Qaeda and its new generation of cloned groups a better recruitment device than our unprovoked invasion of an oil-rich Arab country.”
I single out Clarke—by all accounts among the best of the best of public servants—only because of his unique role in counterterrorism and because, thanks to his illuminating 2004 memoir, we know his thoughts at that time, and, in particular, the intensity of his anguish and frustration. Such a memoir allows us, as we read each new revelation, to ask a simple question: What difference might it have made to events if he had told us this at the time?
Clarke was not, of course, the only one who could have told us, or told Congress. We know from other accounts that both of his key judgments—the absence of linkage between Al Qaeda and Saddam and his correct prediction that “attacking Iraq would actually make America less secure and strengthen the broader radical Islamic terrorist movement”—were shared by many professionals in the CIA, the State Department, and the military.
Yet neither of these crucial, expert conclusions was made available to Congress or the public, by Clarke or anyone else, in the eighteen-month run-up to the war. Even as they heard the president lead the country to the opposite, false impressions, toward what these officials saw as a disastrous, unjustified war, they felt obliged to keep their silence.
Costly as their silence was to their country and its victims, I feel I know their mind-set. I had long prized my own identity as a keeper of the president’s secrets. In 1964 it never even occurred to me to break the many secrecy agreements I had signed, in the Marines, at the Rand Corporation, in the Pentagon. Although I already knew the Vietnam War was a mistake and based on lies, my loyalties then were to the secretary of defense and the president (and to my promises of secrecy, on which my own career as a president’s man depended). I’m not proud that it took me years of war to awaken to the higher loyalties owed by every government official to the rule of law, to our soldiers in harm’s way, to our fellow citizens, and, explicitly, to the Constitution, which every one of us had sworn an oath “to support and uphold.”
It took me that long to recognize that the secrecy agreements we had signed frequently conflicted with our oath to uphold the Constitution. That conflict arose almost daily, unnoticed by me or other officials, whenever we were secretly aware that the president or other executive officers were lying to or misleading Congress. In giving priority, in effect, to my promise of secrecy—ignoring my constitutional obligation—I was no worse or better than any of my Vietnam-era colleagues, or those who later saw the Iraq war approaching and failed to warn anyone outside the executive branch.
Ironically, Clarke told Vanity Fair in 2004 that in his own youth he had ardently protested “the complete folly” of the Vietnam War and that he “wanted to get involved in national security in 1973 as a career so that Vietnam didn’t happen again.” He is left today with a sense of failure:
It’s an arrogant thing to think, Could I have ever stopped another Vietnam? But it really filled me with frustration that when I saw Iraq coming I wasn’t able to do anything. After having spent thirty years in national security and having been in some senior-level positions you would think that I might be able to have some influence, some tiny influence. But I couldn’t have any.
But it was not too arrogant, I believe, for Clarke to aspire to stop this second Vietnam personally. He actually had a good chance to do so, throughout 2002, the same one Senator Morse had pointed out to me.
Instead of writing a memoir to be cleared for publication in 2004, a year after Iraq had been invaded, Clarke could have made his knowledge of the war to come, and its danger to our security, public before the war. He could have supported his testimony with hundreds of files of documents from his office safe and computer, to which he then still had access. He could have given these to both the media and the then Democratic-controlled Senate.
“If I had criticized the president to the press as a special assistant” in the summer of 2002, Clarke told Larry King in March 2004, “I would have been fired within an hour.” That is undoubtedly true. But should that be the last word on that course? To be sure, virtually all bureaucrats would agree with him, as he told King, that his only responsible options at that point were either to resign quietly or to “spin” for the White House to the press, as he did. But that is just the working norm I mean to question here.
His unperceived alternative, I wish to suggest, was precisely to court being fired for telling the truth to the public, with documentary evidence, in the summer of 2002. For doing that, Clarke would not only have lost his job, his clearance, and his career as an executive official; he would almost surely have been prosecuted, and he might have gone to prison. But the controversy that ensued would not have been about hindsight and blame. It would have been about whether war on Iraq would make the United States safer, and whether it was otherwise justified.
That debate did not occur in 2002—just as a real debate about war in Vietnam did not occur in 1964—thanks to the disciplined reticence of Clarke and many others. Whatever his personal fate, which might have been severe, his disclosures would have come before the war. Perhaps, instead of it.
* * *
We face today a crisis similar to those of 1964 and 2002, a crisis hidden once again from the public and most of Congress. Articles by Seymour Hersh and others have revealed that, as in both those earlier cases, the president has secretly directed the completion, though not yet execution, of military operational plans—not merely hypothetical “contingency plans” but constantly updated plans, with movement of forces and high states of readiness, for prompt implementation on command—for attacking a country that, unless attacked itself, poses no threat to the United States: in this case, Iran.
According to these reports, many high-level officers and government officials are convinced that our president will attempt to bring about regime change in Iran by air attack; that he and his vice president have long been no less committed, secretly, to doing so than they were to attacking Iraq; and that his secretary of defense is as madly optimistic about the prospects for fast, cheap military success there as he was in Iraq.
Even more ominously, Philip Giraldi, a former CIA official, reported in The American Conservative a year ago that Vice President Cheney’s office had directed contingency planning for “a large-scale air assault on Iran employing both conventional and tactical nuclear weapons” and that “several senior Air Force officers” involved in the planning were “appalled at the implications of what they are doing—that Iran is being set up for an unprovoked nuclear attack—but no one is prepared to damage his career by posing any objection.”
Several of Hersh’s sources have confirmed both the detailed operational planning for use of nuclear weapons against deep underground Iranian installations and military resistance to this prospect, which led several senior officials to consider resigning. Hersh notes that opposition by the Joint Chiefs in April led to White House withdrawal of the “nuclear option”—for now, I would say. The operational plans remain in existence, to be drawn upon for a “decisive” blow if the president deems it necessary.
Many of these sources regard the planned massive air attack—with or without nuclear weapons—as almost sure to be catastrophic for the Middle East, the position of the United States in the world, our troops in Iraq, the world economy, and U.S. domestic security. Thus they are as deeply concerned about these prospects as many other insiders were in the year before the Iraq invasion. That is why, unlike in the lead-up to Vietnam or Iraq, some insiders are leaking to reporters. But since these disclosures—so far without documents and without attribution—have not evidently had enough credibility to raise public alarm, the question is whether such officials have yet reached the limit of their responsibilities to our country.
Assuming Hersh’s so-far anonymous sources mean what they say—that this is, as one puts it, “a juggernaut that has to be stopped”—I believe it is time for one or more of them to go beyond fragmentary leaks unaccompanied by documents. That means doing what no other active official or consultant has ever done in a timely way: what neither Richard Clarke nor I nor anyone else thought of doing until we were no longer officials, no longer had access to current documents, after bombs had fallen and thousands had died, years into a war. It means going outside executive channels, as officials with contemporary access, to expose the president’s lies and oppose his war policy publicly before the war, with unequivocal evidence from inside.
Simply resigning in silence does not meet moral or political responsibilities of officials rightly “appalled” by the thrust of secret policy. I hope that one or more such persons will make the sober decision—accepting sacrifice of clearance and career, and risk of prison—to disclose comprehensive files that convey, irrefutably, official, secret estimates of costs and prospects and dangers of the military plans being considered. What needs disclosure is the full internal controversy, the secret critiques as well as the arguments and claims of advocates of war and nuclear “options”—the Pentagon Papers of the Middle East. But unlike in 1971, the ongoing secret debate should be made available before our war in the region expands to include Iran, before the sixty-one-year moratorium on nuclear war is ended violently, to give our democracy a chance to foreclose either of those catastrophes.
The personal risks of doing this are very great. Yet they are not as great as the risks of bodies and lives we are asking daily of over 130,000 young Americans—with many yet to join them—in an unjust war. Our country has urgent need for comparable courage, moral and civil courage, from its public servants. They owe us the truth before the next war begins.
U.S. war games target Iran Military options range from the subtle to the extreme
by Matthew B. Stannard
November 1, 2006 San Francisco Chronicle
A B-2A Spirit thunders down the aging airstrip of Whiteman Air Force Base and takes off, curving east over Missouri.
More than 19 hours later, the bomber slices above central Iran and releases a 4,500-pound "bunker buster" over a complex of buildings guarded by aging missiles and obsolete guns. That, according to many experts, would be the opening gambit in a war against Iran -- should the United States decide to undertake that risky option.
"Iran has been a focus of war gaming for many years both inside and outside the Pentagon, and I have been around and participated in some of that. I have 'invaded' Iran probably 20 times; I have 'bombed' Iran 30 or 40 times," said Sam Gardiner, a retired Air Force colonel who has taught strategy and military operations at the National War College.
The Bush administration is constantly reiterating its desire for a diplomatic solution to the crisis over Iran's nuclear program. But the administration emphasizes that nothing is "off the table," including military action.
"The evidence is overwhelming that plans have not only been dusted off, but they are at the White House," Gardiner said.
Other analysts are far more guarded.
"Only the president and a small number of his intelligence advisers can know at this point," said Michael Eisenstadt, director of the Military and Security Studies Program at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy. "I think this could go both ways."
What would a military strike look like?
U.S. military options range from the subtle to the extreme.
Washington could sponsor Iranian dissidents, or employ U.S. Special Forces to conduct covert operations within Iran, sabotaging nuclear facilities or assassinating key scientists. In the view of many analysts, however, such operations, while important as part of any broader military approach, are insufficient to stop Iran's nuclear program.
At the other extreme, the United States could launch a full-scale invasion. That would be enormously demanding -- Iran is much larger than Iraq and is likely to put up far more resistance.
"Nobody that I know of is talking about the use of ground forces," Gardiner said.
Between those options are several airstrike scenarios, including limited attacks on Iranian military assets or carefully selected research sites, and sustained and broad strikes against political, military and scientific targets seeking not only to wipe out Iran's nuclear program but to topple its government.
IRAN: 'EXTENSIVE' MILITARY WAR GAMES TO START IN PERSIAN GULF
Tehran, 1 Nov. (AKI) - Iran will on Thursday start a major military exercise in the Persian Gulf, Commander-in-Chief of Iran's Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) Major General Seyed Yahya Rahim Safavi announced on Wednesday, quoted by the semi-official Fars news agency. Iran's airforce, army and navy, as well as the Basji Islamic reservists will take part in the manvoevres, codenamed 'The Great Prophet 2', said Safavi.
"The Great Prophet 2" will continue in Gulf waters, the Sea of Oman and in 14 provinces of Iran, Safavi stated. His announcement came three days after United States-led military maneuvers aimed at preventing the smuggling of nuclear weapons material and arms proliferation were being held in the waters of the Persian Gulf.
Vessels from the United States, Britain, France, Italy, Australia and Bahrain are taking part in the US-led exercise.
Iranian government spokesman Gholam-Hossein Elham on Monday urged foreign military forces not to destabilise the Persian Gulf, saying durable peace and security would be restored through collective cooperation of all countries of the region.
In April, Iran launched a large-scale military exercise, the biggest in years, codenamed 'The Great Prophet." During the manoeuvres, Iran said that it tested advanced weapons including missiles and torpedoes.
Iran tests fire Shahab-3 Missile The Associated PressPublished: November 2, 2006
TEHRAN, Iran: Iranian state-run televison said Thursday the country had test-fired dozen of missiles, including the long-range Shahab-3, during the first hours of new military maneuvers.
The report said the elite Revolutionary Guards also had launched several kinds of short-range missiles in a central desert area of Iran.
The newscaster did not elaborate about when the manuveurs had begun or where they were located. But earlier Wednesday, the head of the Revolutionary Guards, Gen. Yahya Rahim Safavi, said the 10-day maneuvers, named "Great Prophet," would take place in the Gulf, the Sea of Oman and several provinces of the country.
The Shahab-3 missile is capable of carrying a nuclear warhead and is believed to have a range of more than 2,000 kilometers (1,242 miles). It can reach Israel and U.S. forces in the Middle East. --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Iran to hold military maneuvers in Persian Gulf today Tehran, Nov 2, IRNA Iran-PG-Wargame
Iranian Basijis (voluntary forces) are to carry out a second phase of the `Nabi Akram 2' (Great Prophet) air, marine and ground military maneuvers in the Persian Gulf on Thursday (today).
The 10-day military exercises will be held to test Iran's strength and national power for all-out defense of the country in the face of any challenge to its territorial integrity.
Various expert units of the Basij will take part in the maneuvers.
`Nabi Akram 2' wargames will be staged simultaneously in East Azarbaijan, Tehran, South Khorassan, Razavi Khorassan, Fars, Qom, Qazvin, Kerman, Kermanshah, Kohgilouyeh and Boyer Ahmad, Golestan and Yazd provinces.
Iran fires missiles in war games - TV Thu Nov 2, 2006 6:14 AM GMT
By Parisa Hafezi
TEHRAN (Reuters) - Iran's Revolutionary Guards fired missiles with the capability of carrying cluster warheads at the start of 10-days of military manoeuvres on Thursday, state television reported.
Iran had said the manoeuvres, which will last until November 11 and will include drills in the Gulf and Sea of Oman, would be a show of "defensive strength".
"Shahab missiles were fired. Its range is up to 2,000 km and it can carry cluster warheads," a reporter for state-owned Arabic-language Al-Alam television told Reuters from central Iran, near where he said the missiles were fired.
There was no immediate confirmation from Iranian authorities.
Yahya Rahim Safavi, commander-in-chief of the Revolutionary Guards, had said the Guards would fire "dozens" of missiles including Shahab-2 and Shahab-3 types with cluster warheads.
Experts say Iran's Shahab-3 missiles have a maximum range of some 2,000 km (1,240 miles), making them capable of hitting Israel as well as U.S. military bases in the Gulf. They say the Shahab-2 missile has a range of up to 700 km (435 miles).
U.S. officials accuse Iran of planning to equip its missiles with nuclear warheads. Iran denies the charge, saying its nuclear programme is aimed at making electricity not bombs.
Safavi had said ground, air and naval forces, including submarines, would take part in the exercises called "The Greatest Prophet", mainly in the Gulf and Sea of Oman.
The Revolutionary Guards, the ideologically driven wing of the armed forces which has a separate command structure from the regular military, held war games in the Gulf in April in which they tested new missiles, torpedoes and other equipment.
Analysts interpreted those war games as a thinly veiled threat that Iran could disrupt vital oil shipping lanes if pushed by an escalation in the dispute over the country's nuclear programme.
The start of Iran's manoeuvres follow U.S.-led naval exercises involving 25 nations in the Gulf on Monday aimed at training the forces to block the transport of weapons of mass destruction and related equipment.
[Blunderov] This is the 2nd time in a week that conservative opinion I have chanced upon has surprised me with what I consider to be its perspicacity.(The first was a piece in The Conservative Voice which suggested that conservatives should vote democratic last week.)
I do not think that Bush can now attack Iran. But, I suppose, if recess appointments can be made then recess wars could be declared. I don't think this is real.
I do think a tremendous classical-consertive undertow has developed beneath the Neo-conservative debacle.
11/10/06 — - WASHINGTON, Nov. 6 (UPI) — The third and final act in the U.S. national tragedy that is the Bush administration may soon play itself out.
Sources indicate increasing indications of "something big" happening between the Nov. 7 congressional election and Christmas. That could be the long-planned attack on Iran.
An attack on Iran will not be an invasion with ground troops. We don't have enough of those left to invade Ruritania. It will be a "package" of air and missile strikes, by U.S. forces or Israel.
That this would constitute folly piled on top of folly is no deterrent to the Bush administration. Like the French Bourbons, it forgets nothing and it learns nothing. It takes pride in not adapting. Or did you somehow miss President George W. Bush's declaration of Presidential Infallibility? It followed shortly after his May 1, 2003 visit to the aircraft carrier USS Abraham Lincoln with the "Mission Accomplished" sign.
The Democrats taking either or both Houses of Congress, if it happens, will not make any difference. They would rather have the Republicans start and lose another war than prevent a national disaster. Politics comes first and the country second.
Many of the consequences of a war with Iran are easy to imagine. Oil would soar to at least $200 per barrel if we could get it. Gas shortages would bring back the gas lines of 1973 and 1979. Our European alliances would be stretched to the breaking point if not beyond it. Most people outside the Bush bubble can see all this coming.
What I fear no one forsees is a substantial danger that we could lose the American army now deployed in Iraq. I have mentioned this in previous columns, but I want to go into it here in more detail because the scenario may soon go live.
Well before the second Iraq war started, I warned in a piece in The American Conservative that the structure of our position in Iraq could lead to that greatest of military disasters, encirclement. That is precisely the danger if we go to war with Iran.
The danger arises because almost all of the vast quantities of supplies American armies need come into Iraq from one direction, up from Kuwait and other Gulf ports in the south. If that supply line is cut, our forces may not have enough stuff, especially fuel, to get out of Iraq. American armies are incredibly fuel-thirsty, and though Iraq has vast oil reserves, it is short of refined oil products. Unlike German World War Gen. Heinz Guderian's army on its way to the Channel coast in 1940, we could not just fuel up at local gas stations.
There are two ways our supply lines from the south could be cut if we attack Iran. The first is by Shiite militias including the Mahdi Army and the Badr Brigades, possibly supported by a general Shiite uprising and, of course, Iran's Revolutionary Guards — The same guys who trained Hezbollah so well.
The second danger is that regular Iranian Army divisions will roll into Iraq, cut our supply lines and attempt to pocket us in and around Baghdad. Washington relies on American air power to prevent this, but bad weather can shut most of that air power down.
Unfortunately, no one in Washington and few people in the U.S. military will even consider this possibility. Why? Because we have fallen victim to our own propaganda. Over and over the U.S. military tells itself, "We're the greatest! We're number one! No one can defeat us. No one can even fight us. We're the greatest military in all of history!"
It's wrong. The U.S. armed forces are technically well-trained, lavishly resourced Second Generation militaries. They are being fought and defeated by Fourth Generation opponents in both Iraq and Afghanistan. They can also be defeated by Third Generation enemies who can observe, orient, decide and act more quickly than can America's vast, process-ridden, Powerpoint-enslaved military headquarters. They can be defeated by strategy, by stratagem, by surprise and by preemption. Unbeatable militaries are like unsinkable ships. They are unsinkable until someone or something sinks them.
If the United States were to lose the army it has in Iraq, to Iraqi militias, Iranian regular forces, or a combination of both (the most likely event), the world would change. It would be our Adrianople, our Rocroi, our Stalingrad. American power and prestige would never recover.
One of the few people who does see this danger is the doyenne of American foreign policy columnists, Georgie Anne Geyer. In her column of Oct. 28 in The Washington Times, she wrote, "The worst has not, by any means, yet happened. When I think of abandoning a battleground, I think of (the 1840s), when thousands of Brits were trying to leave Afghanistan through the Khyber Pass and all were killed by tribesmen except one man, left to tell the story."
Our men and women in Iraq are in isolated compounds, not easy even to retreat from, were that decision made. Time is truly running out.
When Dick Cheney woke up on Wednesday mourning, his entire world had changed. The House and Senate was in control of the Democrats, Bush Senior’s buddy Robert Gates had taken over at the Pentagon, and his most-trusted ally, Don Rumsfeld, had been thrown overboard.
Cheney knows that the story about a “Democratic sweep” is utter nonsense. He knows who operates the voting machines and how get the results he wants. The normal procedures for rigging the election were simply put on hold.
He also knows that the Justice Dept had sent out over 80 attorneys to various parts of the country where the Republicans anticipated legal challenges after the elections, but there were no legal challenges. Someone decided that there would be no fight at all, even in the close senatorial races where recounts might have made a difference.
Is anyone gullible enough to believe that Republican big-wigs have given up cheating as avital part of their strategy for winning elections?
I doubt it. Cheney knows why there were no challenges; just like he knows why Rumsfeld was thrown to the wolves AFTER the elections rather than before when it might’ve hurt the Democrat’s chances for victory.
Cheney was betrayed and his plans for one-party rule have been intentionally subverted.Even his seat next to the throne has been jettisoned to make room for Papa Bush’s friend and CIA-alum, Robert Gates.
So, what does it all mean?
Well, as many of the political wags are finally admitting, the adults are stepping in and taking back their government. The establishment “old school” Republicans and country club plutocrats put-together a plan to sabotage the Cheney administration and put an end to the Iraq debacle. The scheme first became apparent when Bob Woodward, the establishment’s number one scribe, released his book “State of Denial”. That was followed by the National Intelligence Estimate (NIE), Lancet’s Iraqi casualty report, the Mark Foley page fiasco, and a steady barrage of ethics and corruption scandals.
The Democrats had nothing to do with the ferocious media-blitzkrieg which pummeled the Bush team day-in and day-out. It was all the handiwork of big-money Republicans who lost their place at the policy-table when Cheney and Rummy decided they would run the whole shebang by themselves.
The only way they could be certain of undermining the Sec-Def and the Veep’s powers was by attacking their political base and destroying the “rubber stamp” congress. And, that is precisely what they did. It's a classic case of the parent killing its own offspring or, as Dostoyevsky said, “One reptile devouring the other.”
The election simply proves that one should not expect to take the country away from the people who really own it.
It’s theirs, and the political parties are merely the temporary security guards who are paid to watch over their prized possession.
What’s interesting in this case, is that Cheney was betrayed by Bush. It was Bush who fed Rummy to the crocodiles and replaced him with Gates, and it was Bush who broke his oath of loyalty to people who put him in office.
Cheney doesn’t like to be betrayed, in fact, Cheney hates to be betrayed. Loyalty is the only virtue among thieves, and Bush has violated that basic bond. That probably means big trouble for George W. Bush in the future.
Understandably, the country is breathing a sigh of relief after the midterm elections, but it may be a bit premature. Cheney may be down, but he’s not out. And, unfortunately,nothing has really changed. Cheney hasn’t abandoned his plan for global domination and he still has plenty of agents lurking in the shadows who will carry out his agenda. His problem now is how to get back “in the game” and settle scores with the people who screwed him over.
Ironically, his biggest obstacle is George Bush, the man who knifed him in the back and put the brakes on the global crusade. Bush is now under the influence his father’s chief-advisors who are determined to get the troops out of Iraq, forestall any attack on Iran, and (probably) undermine the powers of the unitary executive.
So,how far will Cheney go to remove the obstacles for realizing his dark vision? Would he be willing to incite a war with Iran to restore himself to power?
William S. Lind, Director for the Center for Cultural Conservatism for the Free Congress Foundation, assures us in his latest article “Iraq Disaster Warning” that “something big’” will happen “between Nov 7 congressional election and Christmas. That could be the long-planned attack on Iran”.
Dr. Elias Akleh supports this theory in his article “War on Iran” providing the worrisome details of the military build-up currently taking place in the Gulf beyond the knowledge of the American people. Akleh states:
“The US and NATO countries had amassed the largest military armada in the Middle East. The US armada consists of carrier Strike Group 12 led by nuclear powered aircraft carrier USS Enterprise, Eisenhower Strike Group—another nuclear powered aircraft carrier with accompanied military vessels and submarines, Expeditionary Strike Group 5 with multiple attack vessels led by aircraft carrier USS Boxer, the Iowa Jima Expeditionary Strike Group, and the US Coast Guard. Canada has sent its anti-submarine HMCS Ottawa frigate to join the American Armada in the Persian Gulf. On October 1the USS Enterprise Striking Group has crossed the Suez Canal to join NATO armada at the eastern shore of the Mediterranean Sea.
The NATO force is composed of troops and naval vessels from several countries and is lead by Germany. It includes German command naval forces, Italian navy, 2 Spanish warships, 3 Danish warships, 10 Greek warships, 2 Netherlands warships, and French, Belgium, Turkish, and Bulgarian troops in South Lebanon.”
Akleh adds ominously,
“This is the largest massing of military power in the region, and it is gathering for a reason.”
So,Iran is still very much on the table just as America is still in danger of deteriorating into a militarized police state. Cheney’s dream of global hegemony and absolute rule continues to move forward regardless of the elections’ results. He remains committed to his original plan whatever the cost to the country in terms of blood and treasure.
Do not underestimate Dick Cheney. He is a dogged “bare-knuckled” street-fighter with a will of tempered steel. He will stop at nothing.
All he needs is a means of getting back into the seat of power.
Do we need to remind ourselves that he is only a “heartbeat” away from the most powerful position in the world?
CIA analysis finds no Iranian nuclear weapons drive: report
[Hermit: Technical glitch fabricating and arranging the evidence for the next war.]
Source: AFP Authors: Not Credited (AFP Washington) Dated: 2006-11-18
A classifed draft CIA assessment has found no firm evidence of a secret drive by Iran to develop nuclear weapons, as alleged by the White House, a top US investigative reporter has said.
Seymour Hersh, writing in an article for the November 27 issue of the magazine The New Yorker released in advance, reported on whether the administration of Republican President George W. Bush was more, or less, inclined to attack Iran after Democrats won control of Congress last week.
A month before the November 7 legislative elections, Hersh wrote, Vice President Dick Cheney attended a national-security discussion that touched on the impact of Democratic victory in both chambers on Iran policy.
"If the Democrats won on November 7th, the vice president said, that victory would not stop the administration from pursuing a military option with Iran," Hersh wrote, citing a source familiar with the discussion.
Cheney said the White House would circumvent any legislative restrictions "and thus stop Congress from getting in its way," he said.
The Democratic victory unleashed a surge of calls for the Bush administration to begin direct talks with Iran.
But the administration's planning of a military option was made "far more complicated" in recent months by a highly classified draft assessment by the Central Intelligence Agency "challenging the White House's assumptions about how close Iran might be to building a nuclear bomb," he wrote.
"The CIA found no conclusive evidence, as yet, of a secret Iranian nuclear-weapons program running parallel to the civilian operations that Iran has declared to the International Atomic Energy Agency," Hersh wrote, adding the CIA had declined to comment on that story. [Hermit: We again see tailoring of the information to suit the theory by that master of the slippery slope.]
A current senior intelligence official confirmed the existence of the CIA analysis and said the White House had been hostile to it, he wrote.
Cheney and his aides had discounted the assessment, the official said.
"They're not looking for a smoking gun," the official was quoted as saying, referring to specific intelligence about Iranian nuclear planning.
"They're looking for the degree of comfort level they think they need to accomplish the mission."
The United States and other major powers believe Iran's uranium enrichment program is ultimately aimed at producing fissile material for nuclear weapons. [Hermit: Faith. n. Belief without evidence in what is told by one who speaks without knowledge, of things without parallel.]
Iran insists it will use the enriched uranium only to fuel nuclear power stations, something it is permitted to do as a signatory to the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty.
The major powers have been debating a draft United Nations resolution drawn up by Britain, France and Germany that would impose limited sanctions on Iran's nuclear and ballistic missile sectors for Tehran's failure to comply with an earlier UN resolution on halting enrichment.
On Wednesday, Israel's outgoing US ambassador Danny Ayalon said in an interview that Bush would not hesitate to use force against Iran to halt its nuclear program if other options failed.
"US President George W. Bush will not hesitate to use force against Iran in order to halt its nuclear program," Ayalon told the Maariv daily. [Hermit: Perhaps people should be asking what the Outgoing Israeli Ambassador knows that America does not.]
Israel, widely considered the Middle East's sole if undeclared nuclear power, views Iran as its arch-foe, pointing to repeated calls by President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad to wipe the Jewish state off the map. [Hermit: Despite the fact that these claims are as specious as they are repeated (See replies 7 and 11 of this thread).]
[Hermit] Iran has every right to import peaceful nuclear technology and to develop indigenous nuclear technology even if this ends up meaning that, like India, they eventually join the nuclear club.
[Bass] Hermit I would somewhat question your reasoning here. You would put nuclear technology in the hands of a nation that has called for the imminent destruction of Israel, and you still think that they would use this "peaceful" nuclear technology for power plants?
Hermit, you're stating that the European Union, and Iraq do not clarify Hezbollah* as a terrorist-organization. So what? I'm so god damn concerned what they justify as a non-terroristic threat.
As right as you are, did you know that the Lebanese government has called on the disarmament of Hezbollah several times? Now while that is hard for them to forcefully do since Hezbollah holds the minority partner in the current Cabinet, it has not detoured their feelings of the Hezbollah armed forces in their country. Their own home country demands the removal of Israeli armed forces for many reasons, one being that Hezbollah move completely to a non-militant resolve, and to a more politcal one. Yes, the European Union does not define Hezbollah as a terrorist organization. The United States, Israel, the Netherlands, Australia, Canada, and the United Kingdom do.
Why does Hezbollah have groups dedicated for the intentional use of infiltrating, bribing, and intelligence gathering of Israeli forces? They also have militants devoted to a group known as the "1800" which aid Palestinians engaged in their operations. "The operations" also known as terroristic activities against the Israelies, by providing funding, direction, weapons, and bomb-building instructions. Not terrorists? Okay.
Although Hezbollah has openly made public statements denouncing specific attacks in America, Europe, and other countries, they still have called on the death of the Israeli military, as well as any women and children who live in the "Palestine" occupied areas.
Iran alone donates over $10 million a year, possibly more, to Hezbollah in order to allow Hezbollah to carry out attacks on Israel (ON TOP of 11,500 missiles from the Iranian-military already in place in southern Lebanon), as well as gather intelligence on Israeli forces, once again, for Iran's wishes of a non-Jewish occupied Israel. Don't tell me you think Iran is interetsed in funding the education, or hunger of the Hezbollah/Lebanese children?
Russia and China both were long-standing opposers of UN sanctions being placed on Iran, however in July 2006 this all changed. They ended their opposition to sanctions and demanded that Iran halt any nuclear program, especially after the United States offered to upgrade Tehran's civilian air fleet, better energy resources, and renewed communications with the country. They declined. Why? They don't want a peacful resolution, and the rest of the world is learning that.
Iran has continously ignored the demanded deadlines the UN has placed on them to halt nuclear enrichment. This was scene when (once again) Tehran refused to meet (yet another) UN deadline of October 2006 to halt uranium enrichment.
Finally, last month the security council imposed sanctions on Iran which bans trade with Iran of all items, materials, equipment, goods and technology which could contribute to Tehran’s uranium enrichment program and contains a list of persons and entities, whose assets are subject to a freeze. This was of course the last course of action taken, as the sanctions on Iran does effect neighboring countries.
And you're telling me (from what I understand of the situation) nuclear technology should be put into their hands for the sole purpose that a portion of their population (less than 2%) have had illness or fatal injury due to air pollution? Where is evidence that their energy process is causing these deaths? Was in-door air pollution considered? Do they have any kind of emissions program for their automobiles? Do they have strict corporate regulations for those companies which produce green-house gases as a natural by product for their manufacturing?
The 3600 number overall isn't significant enough to give a nation nuclear technology because they deem they need it for cleaner air. Yes, they deserve clean air - everyone does. The United States has offered technology to help their energy capabilities before. We just won't do it with a nuclear resolution. UN inspectors coming in to make sure "all is right" has failed in the past.
Israel is our ally. They have been since they declared independence in 1948. We have an obligation to not only help Israel against terrorist organizations, but all nations against terrorism. It is also important for the US's continued funding and military aid of Israel to balance power in the Middle East, without which Israel would be destroyed.
I'm fully aware of Hezbollah's political and military stand point. I'm in agreeance with their resistance comformity and their right to protect their land, families, children, businesses, etc. I fully endorse their role in the Lebanese cabinet, and think it was a great step for them to join the politcal process by adding 14 of their members to the 128 seats.
The militant side of Hezbollah is what I do not agree with, for various reasons I've already explained. I've understood why half the community deems Hezbollah a terrorist organization, and the other half doesn't. They are playing both sides of the table, which makes it harder to determine their true expectations or demands and again, I'm grateful they are taking politcal stand points and I hope it (Hezbollah) continues to do so in the future.
Certain security precautions sometimes have to be taken to protect the overall well being of a nation. Not unlike in the case someone hijacks a place. If that plane is caring a nuclear device on board, or other weapon of mass destruction, the order would be given to shoot down the plane, along with the passengers to save ten's of thousands of other lives. It's unfortunate, but required.
Many Americans (and I'm being modest, since I'm sure there's other countries with Muslim conflicts) more than likely were not bias at all towards people of Muslim, or Arab decent before 1998 or the World Trade Center/Pentagon attacks. That should go to show you that many people are uneducated as a whole, but regardless the terrorism community brought a lot more heat on itself between 1998 and 2001 all on their own. And you justifying terrorists killing thousands of innocent people due to someone else's bias opinion is sickening. You might as well just not comment anymore in the Religious debates, seeing as you now feel like people aren't entitled to an opinion, and if that opinion differs from the majority, might as well whipe out a few thousand people with a plane, right?
Regardless of how you, or I think. Regardless of what we feel is just or unjust. Regardless of what you or I weyken to be right or wrong. The powers that be, whether it is the American Government, British, Canadian, Japanese....even organized terrorist regimes. They are going to do what is neccesary to protect their countries and it's people, regardless of morality. However this doesn't make it right, no matter who it is.
While American's armed forces are significantly spread out across the Arab region, and abroad it still is safe to say this country is by far one of the strongest, if not the strongest military force in the world.