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Things That Go Bump in the Night: The President and His Perverts

Arthur Silber is back and, as usual, loaded for bear in “New Barbarians of the Middle Ages, and the Living Dead.” Here, he features a long take from a recent article by Slavoj Zizek on one of the most shocking developments of our shocked-and-awed days: the widespread acceptance of torture as “business as usual” for the American State. Especially as evidenced in the “serious” discussions about the “confessions” waterboarded and beaten out of extremist operative Khalid Shaikh Mohammed. As Zizek puts it:

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Seeds of Wrath: Bush Sows New Crop of Extremists

Not that anyone cares or anything, but the Bush-backed “regime change” war in Somalia – another of those quickie “mission accomplished” jobs like Afghanistan and Iraq that somehow never quite get accomplished after all – is still raging, with the worst fighting that the capital of Mogadishu has seen in 15 years. Or to put it another way, not since the last major American intervention into Somalia’s affairs – a bipartisan

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Death Cult: The Violent Vision of the Radical Right

Dave Neiwert picks up on the accelerating eliminationist rhetoric issuing from Rad Right poster boy Mark Steyn and his slathering acolytes such as Mark Noonan. Taking off on a story about German efforts to stem a spate of infanticides (23 to be exact, in a nation of 82 million), Steyn cracks wise, then turns the story into a bizarre attack on “the welfare state.” First he notes the continuing economic ravages in eastern Germany then, in the very next paragraph, forgets all about this and scornfully dismisses the

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A Little Bit More on Bush’s Brain

Yesterday’s post about Bush’s intelligence drew some interesting comments. (There were also several comments on the version that later appeared at The Smirking Chimp.) I thought I might address some of them in this follow-up post. There were some good insights offered among the comments, so this is in no way a “counterblast,” simply a further elucidation of some points I was trying to make in the original post.

One comment ran: “WTF happen to you! Did you get hit on the
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Intelligent Design: Consciousness and Culpability in the Mind of George Bush

(Updated below.)
I would like to introduce into the court of public opinion a piece of evidence that will undermine to a large extent the argument often made – sometimes on these very pages – that George W. Bush is a man of stunted intellect, unable to understand the pernicious effects of his policies.

This evidence is derived from a book written by one of Bush’s most fervent admirers, his former speechwriter David Frum. A passage from the book – a work of cringing, bootlicking hagiography called

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Blood and Irony: No-Flying the Unfriendly Skies of Iraq

“Irony is dead” was a phrase you used to hear a lot in the days right after 9/11. It wasn’t true, of course; genuine irony is more necessary — and more inescapable — than ever during a time of tragedy, when reality forces itself more strongly to the surface, exposing all of its fissures and inconsistencies. What the phrase actually meant was “sneering sarcasm is dead.” (Which wasn’t true either, although for a time such sarcasm could only be applied safely, in print, to anyone

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