“Soft despotism is a term coined by Alexis de Tocqueville describing the state into which a country overrun by "a network of small complicated rules" might degrade. Soft despotism is different from despotism (also called 'hard despotism') in the sense that it is not obvious to the people."

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Disdain and Disrespect

Now that pardons are in the news, I would also like to ask for a pardon:

I beg your pardon but I have no sympathy for young John Walker Lindh, the American Taliban swept off the battle field in Afghanistan. He was sentenced to 20 years and now after serving seven, would like a Presidential pardon. Let him stay in jail and serve the full term. Being young and foolish is no excuse for taking up arms against your own country and especially on behalf of such vile company as he kept.

Mr. Muntadhar al-Zeidi, the shoe thrower who had the nerve to assault the President of the United States would also like to be pardoned for his "ugly deed." I'm sure he would. There's no question that instead of spending the next two years in jail, he rather be free and enjoying his new found celebrity in the Arab world.

BAGHDAD – The Iraqi journalist who hurled his shoes at President George W. Bush is begging for a pardon for what he described as "an ugly act," the prime minister's spokesman said Thursday.

Muntadhar al-Zeidi, a correspondent for an Iraqi-owned television station based in Cairo, Egypt, could face two years imprisonment for insulting a foreign leader. He remained in custody Thursday night.

"It is too late to reverse the big and ugly act that I perpetrated," al-Zeidi wrote in a letter delivered to Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki, according to the prime minister's spokesman.

The spokesman, Yassin Majid, told The Associated Press that al-Zeidi went on in the letter to recall an interview he conducted with the prime minister in 2005 when al-Maliki invited him into his home, saying: "Come in, it is your home too."

"So I ask for your pardon, excellency," Majid quoted the letter as saying.

However, the journalist's brother, Dhargham al-Zeidi, told the AP he was skeptical that his brother would write such a letter.

"I am suspicious that my brother wrote that letter to al-Maliki because I know my brother very well," he said. He added that family members and staffers from Al-Baghdadia would stage a sit-in Friday near the U.S.-controlled Green Zone.

Obviously this is a matter of Iraqi law but if the Iraqis are smart, they will make sure that Mr. al-Zeidi's act does not go unpunished. Granting a pardon or not prosecuting to the fullest extent of the law would send a message that I suspect would not sit well with the majority of the American public. As we know, showing someone the sole of your shoe or throwing your shoes at someone is a common symbol of Arab disdain and disrespect. More than that, throwing a size 10 shoe is equivalent to throwing a punch or wielding a club. It's assault. And in this case, it was an assault on the President. Many of us would also view not prosecuting the perpetrator as disdain and disrespect. The Iraqis ought to consider this carefully as many US citizens are ready to wash their hands of a people they view as unappreciative and unworthy.


  1. Greek Youths Continue Raising Hell

    This has been going on two weeks now, and the damage done to the shopkeepers and others has really mounted up.

    How about, it's time to shoot some of them?

  2. I suppose the shopkeepers aren't allowed to have guns, so they can't protect their own property, and the police are ineffective.

    What they need in Athens is some Korean grocers, armed.

  3. Why has Blago's Wife gotten a free ride by the press?
    She's the Realtor that set up the Rezko-Hussein land fraud.

    - Miller Caller to Tucker Carlson

  4. 'course White Knight Obama was out of the loop.
    ..."not the sweet wife I knew."

  5. aaahhh, what a farce of a country we are becoming. We have Al Frankenstein in Minnesota, Caroline Kennedy dining with Al Sharpton, Charlie Rangel still cheating on his taxes, a usurping President elect from the sewer in Chicago who won't answer some simple questions, and a Supreme Court that's shown itself to be worthless. And, a mindless populace, though I'm not starting on culture.

  6. This comment has been removed by the author.

  7. We all know Hot-Rod's previous profession was Bookie, don't we?

  8. People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, or PETA, issued a statement Thursday decrying the cruel treatment.

    Good Luck, PETA

    Chinese Cats To The Cooker


    Maybe when the predatory cats let up on the poor innocent mice, they'll deserve more respect.

  9. Hot-Rod paid off the protection tax to one Bobbie "The Boxer" Somebodyorother, I read the other day.

  10. I quess Blago's wife really knows how to use the "f" word.

    Pure trash mouth, when not in public.

    f this, f that, f every last thing.

  11. f the government, oh, we are the government....

  12. The Bookie, the Realtor, the Arab Crook, and me. unknown.

  13. 68. marek:


    Self hate/castration… are a general problem of the Western societies and not just Japan and Germany. And I’m not sure what will it take to redirect/convert our self hatred into a required hate and anger toward the islamist and their helpers and facilitators. If we look at Israel, apparently following your logic, the future doesn’t look rosy.

    Hug a Pali, says Doug.

    Show the World you care.

  14. Self hate/castration

    I doubt it. More to do with the politics of oil, than anything else. And it provides a wonderful view of the soul, or lack of.

  15. Rick Warren Pick was Brilliant...
    Christian Suckers are slobbering.

    ...and Rick thinks the Syrian Opthamologist is a sweet guy, remember?

  16. You're OBSESSED with Oil, my man!

    ...certainly it's been there from the begining, but also clearly, Dhihimitude has been growing strongly for years.

  17. We should all be in Washington D.C., marching on the institutions of government.

  18. The DSCC got 100 large from Bernie Madoff:
    Will they return the stolen funds? Tucker says, if Bernie gives the DSCC 100 grand and the press doesn't report it,
    did it really happen?

  19. Said money is undoubtedly helping Frankenstein in Minnesota as we speak.

  20. This comment has been removed by the author.

  21. Dhihimitude has been growing strongly for years.

    And this because jihadi woman are well groomed?

  22. As upwards of five million Americans prepare to take a sojourn to DC, come the 20th of January, to support the President and the Federal system he will come to represent.

    Millions of residents are expected on the Mall, to see the embodiment of the electorate's hope, Barack Hussien Obama inaugurated as President.

    Where are the counter marchers bob has called for, who is organizing them? One wonders ...

  23. An Xmas Gift for Mat:

    Moguls and Arab States Are Big Donors to Clinton Charity

    Former President Bill Clinton disclosed the names of more than 200,000 donors to his foundation as part of a deal with the Obama transition team.

  24. al-Bob is just trying to prove his Area 51 Credentials 'Rat, in hopes of scoring a guest slot on late nite.

  25. Moguls and Arab States Are Big Donors to Clinton Charity

    As opposed to Bush donating trillions to jihadi charities?

  26. Yeah Doug, maybe when you almost die you go to Area 51.

  27. Contango

    Oil keeps going down despite OPEC announcing drastic cuts. 75% fall since summer, it's the oil swindlers at work again, the mega/oil companies conspiring to screw us all. Maxine Waters, where are ya?

  28. Matthew 7:6 (King James Version):

    Give not that which is holy unto the dogs, neither cast ye your pearls before swine, lest they trample them under their feet.

    Black Elk followed this practice.

    Black Elk, with his near-blind stare fixed on the ground, seemed to have forgotten us. I was about to break the silence by way of getting something started, when the old man looked up to Flying Hawk, the interpreter, and said (speaking Sioux, for he had no English): "As I sit here, I can feel in this man beside me a strong desire to know the things of the Other World. He has been sent to learn what I know, and I will teach him."

    He had kept his great vision mostly to himself until he talked to Neihardt.

  29. What would have happened if Pres Bush had simply removed HIS shoes and threw those back at the bastard?

  30. Karl Rove, President George W. Bush's former political guru, has called the cabinet choices "reassuring." McCain said Obama's national security team comprised people "the American people can trust."

    Obama is due to finish his family break on New Year's Day. While in Hawaii, he is expected to attend funeral services for his late grandmother, Madelyn Dunham, who died just hours before his election triumph.

    He will also continue crafting his inaugural address, as Washington braces for millions of people keen to share in the moment when America's first black president takes office at noon on January 20.

    Cabinet Plaudits

  31. You can trust Team Obama, bob, your candidate for President, John McCain, has told US so. He is a man of good character and better judgement than most political leaders. I read that, here, often.

    You just gotta believe that your choice and judgement, in and of John S. McCain, were well placed. that you were right, and I wrong about Maverick, his judgement and decision making abilities ...

    No worries then, amigo.

  32. He'd have been left standing in his socks, wi"o".

  33. Mary Schapiro, chosen to run the Securities and Exchange Commission, and Gary Gensler, who will head the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, both have extensive inside-the-Beltway policymaking experience. And Schapiro in particular has built a reputation as a pragmatic regulator who sees the need for close oversight of financial markets.


    Democrats on Capitol Hill expressed hopes that the choice of Schapiro, in particular, meant a new tougher cop on the beat.

    "Mary Schapiro is the kind of strong and experienced regulator that we very much need in these times," said Sen. Charles Schumer, D-N.Y., who predicted quick Senate approval.

    Active in the Markets

  34. Rat, you got to admit, it was
    Sarah and husband I had as my picture, not John.

    I believe I said somewhere, the best that could happen was that he got elected, then had a massive heart attack.

    That doesn't sound like the sentiments of a McCainiac, to me:)

  35. Bush showed the reactions of a well tuned 18 year old, if you ask me. Took it right in stride. Guy might be able to dodge a bullet, with reactions like that.

  36. Great post, Sam. Took me about 15 tries to nail George once. Spry as an eighteen year old, I tell ya, that George.

    As my mother used to say, "Lordy this world sure has gone crazy" from comments

    Sure do agree with that.

    Canadian Human Rights Commission Persecutes Only Christians

  37. Cortes was the first European to see a buffalo(Montezuma had one) but the prize for the first European to see a wild buffalo goes to the Spanish explorer Alvar Nunez Cabeza de Vaca. De Vaca sailed for North America in 1527 as second-in-command of the Narvaez expedition, an armada of five boats under the King's orders to "conquer and govern" the land of Florida, a vast expanse of ground with an indefinite western boundary. Three hundred men and forty horses departed the ships and headed cross country into the Florida Penninsula in April 1528. They had loose plans of traveling to the north and west, where they'd meet up again with the men who remained on the ships. After five months of trudging through swamps, they hadn't found their ships and the hadn't discovered any cities of gold, but they did manage to kill or harass every native Floridian they ran into. Word of the Spaniard's open hostilities spread from one native village to the next, and soon the Indians were stealthily slaughtering the Spaniards with arrows.

    By the time the expedition hit northern Florida, they were down to 250 men....they sailed along the gulf...two rafts shipwrecked on Galveston Island...dysentary and malaria felled them....soon the eighty or so men who had landed on Galveston Island were down to 15...

    The survivors were dispersed among groups of Indians...they died of exposure and starvation, after falling into slavery....

    De Vaca survived on luck and fortitude and the kindness of his hosts and keepers....

    By 1532 after four years of wandering the expedition was down to four men, de Vaca, two other Spaniards, and an African muslim. The four of them were freed from captivity, rejoined one another and continued westward towards Mexico, but fell into the hands of two new tribes, the Mariames and the Yguazes in Texas, again divided up and enslaved....

    de Vaca encountered humans who burned their religious leaders' bodies and drank the ashes mixed with water; he encountered men who lived with eunuch lovers, the eunuchs being 'more muscular and taller than other men'; he encountered humans who ate the flesh of poisonous snakes, and when the meat was gone, they roasted the bones and ate those too; he encountered humans who fed their infant daughters to dogs because it was considered taboo for tribal members to marry women born within their own clan and they feared that female babies would grow up to bear the children of their enemies.

    Somewhere amid the mayhem, de Vaca finally encountered American Buffalo in south-cenral Texas.

    "Cows come here," he later wrote in Relation--"I have seen them three of four times and eaten them. It seems to me they are about the size of the ones in
    Spain. They have two small horns, like Moorish cattle, and very long hair, like a fine blanket made from the wool of Merino sheep. Some are brownish and others black. It seems to me they have more and better meat than cattle here in Spain. From the small ones the Indians make blankets to cover themselves, and from the large ones they make shoes and shields. These animals come from the North all the way to the coast of Floirida, where they scatter, crossing the land more than four hundred leagues. All along their range, through the valleys where they roam, people who live near there descend to live off them."

    De Vaca had an exciting life.

    The earliest buffalo in America were larger, and had much larger horns, like those longhorn Texas cattle, an instance of 'giantism' so my book

    "American Buffalo--In Search Of A Lost Icon"--Steve Rinella--tells me.

    The buffalo on your nickel was etched from a buffalo named Black Diamond, who lived in a zoo back east.

    His head is down and he appears stooped, from his confinement.

  38. Obama and friends set to sell Israel out---



    December 16, 2008

    With the election of Barack Obama, the United States has moved dramatically to the left in its foreign policy at just the time that Israel, which seems likely to return Bibi Netanyahu to office in early February, is moving to the right. A collision is almost inevitable.

    Caroline Glick, the highly astute conservative columnist for the Jerusalem Post, writes that the "international community" believes that Obama "will move quickly to place massive pressure on the next Israeli government to withdraw from Judea, Samaria, Jerusalem and the Golan Heights in the interests of advancing a 'peace process' with the Palestinians and the Syrians." She notes that "people who have been in close contact with Obama's foreign policy transition team have privately acknowledged that the widespread belief that Obama will move swiftly to put the screws on Israel is fully justified. According to one source who has spent a great deal of time with the transition team since last month's U.S. elections, Obama's people are 'scope-locked' on Israel."

    Meanwhile, in Israel, there is a growing consensus, reflected in public opinion surveys, that trading land for peace is a chimera. Netanyahu points out that "we do not have a viable partner with whom to negotiate peace." The Palestinian Authority does not speak for the people of either Gaza or the West Bank, and Hamas, which probably does (it won the election), does not want to be a party to any peace agreement. Recent experience suggests that Hamas will quickly install rocket launchers on any territory Israel concedes, using it not as a basis for peace, but as a platform from which to kill more Jews.

    Former Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and the candidates of the left, Labor's Ehud Barak and Kadima's Tzipi Livni, are deeply committed to land for peace. Their rejection by the Israeli electorate -- the anticipated outcome of the Feb. 10 election -- will signal a bold departure in the political consensus of the Jewish state, a consensus that flies directly in the face of Obama's likely policy.

    The difference between the U.S. and Israel also extends to the realm of how strongly they oppose Iranian development of nuclear weapons. While Iran moves closer and closer to a bomb that could and will be used against Israel, Obama speaks of extending the American "nuclear umbrella" to cover Israel.

    Reading between the lines, this means that he doesn't think he can stop Iranian nuclear ambitions and will retreat to a policy of deterrence, accepting a nuclear Iran in the bargain.

    If Netanyahu wins the election, he will bring with him a determination to stop Iranian nuclear weapons, no matter what, and a refusal to concede more territory in the name of the peace process. But Obama's foreign policy team will be focusing on pushing Israel in just the opposite direction.

    The result is likely to be the most significant divergence between Israeli and American policies since 1956, when President Eisenhower sided with the Arabs to halt the British-French-Israeli invasion of Suez.

    The United States has tremendous leverage over Israel -- military, financial and political. And Obama's ability to carry the Jewish vote by a wide margin despite his likely Middle East policy makes him largely immune to the kind of political pressure that has disciplined American presidents in the past and forced them to incline toward accommodating Israeli views on the Middle East.

    But Israel probably has the military capacity to bomb Iran and to win the Middle East war against Syria, Hamas, Iran and Hezbollah that is likely to result. Unlike Olmert, Netanyahu will use ground troops right off the bat and will fight such a war to win and to win big. But they may have to do it without their strongest ally: the United States.

  39. As Mr Gates wrote, not long ago. there is no ground forces solution to the Islamic/Terrorist challenge.

    If there is no such solution available to the US, Israel will not find one, either.

    So the very idea that Israel could use force, and use it to win big, violates the basic US defense strategies in that Region of the World.

    As the last battle in Lebanon exemplified, without US logistical support, the Israeli Army cannot fight an offensive conflict. Not for long, anyway.

    Mr Dick Morris, much as I like him, has been wrong, lately. He is wrong about Israel and the Obama response to Israeli aggression, too. Israel will lose, without the US to back its' play.
    Lose big, I'm afraid.

  40. I don't know. I feel things coming to a head, though.

    He was sure wrong about Hillary. Didn't he have her winning the democratic nomination from day one? Seems that's what I recall.

    Well, grrnight, folks.

  41. So the very idea that Israel could use force, and use it to win big, violates the basic US defense strategies in that Region of the World.

    The only strategy, is that of fake wars and political appeasement for oil. As far as the negotiations with the jihadis, it is a bilateral issue. I don't see any possible political gain for Obama/Clinton getting involved.

  42. This comment has been removed by the author.

  43. First of all, I give props to the shoe guy. US Journalists should have been doing that, but they have no balls.

    As for Obama and linking him to dubious characters...EVERY ONE of the politicians is linked somehow to crooks. EVERY ONE of them.

    If Obama at least does 10% good, that is 10% more than Bush!

    Also, as much as war is regarding Oil, it is lot more for pure Money! War is Good Business for all these corporations.

    There is no such thing as doing the right thing anymore...that died a long long time ago fellas.

    I am in the finance biz and let me tell you, the amount of fraud I am seeing this year is nothing short of amazing.


  44. dr

    As the last battle in Lebanon exemplified, without US logistical support, the Israeli Army cannot fight an offensive conflict. Not for long, anyway.

    total crap dr...

    You still look at the Lebanese from the wrong angle (as do most people, but then again most people never saw the over priced dow and housing either)

    The Lebanese war...

    Israel COULD not fight the war it was going to wage, because the ENEMY COULD not KILL enough Jews to warrant a full land invasion...

    look at the stats...

    Hezbollah shot 10,000 rockets TRYING to kill as many civilians as possible.. and they succeeded in killed about 40....

    The world would not have stood for Big mighty Israel beating up on the small, powerless arab world for real... UNLESS JEWS die in HUGH NUMBERS...

    MARK my words....

    Israel could have destroyed the population of southern lebanon in a 3 day blitz IF they WANTED to.

    Do you not recall Israel using the telephone to CALL lebanese civilians warning them to evacuate?

    No, the coming war in lebanon, gaza, syria & iran will be bloody....

    Israelis have been building defensive things called bomb shelters for decades, the arabs and persians? They build their egos, new tee shirts and stockpiles of rockets....

    Hezbollah (which the world gives the credit of "winning" the last war) lost over 800 men and billions of infrastructure... Southern Lebanon STILL has not been repaired....

    Israel was forced NOT to go after many targets in the last war, these targets are now lit as legit targets, now that lebanon is Hezbollah and Hezbollah is Lebanon...

    the same can be said about Gaza and Hamas...

    the last "ceasefire" hamas and company shot over 3000 rockets and mortars... and has used israeli restraint to re-arm and bring in heavy weapons...

    But much to the surprise of the world Israel actually has a modern day army and the weapons that go along with it... Just not impatience to shoot their wad prematurely...

    IF the arab/islamic world COULD destroy israel they would, this is why they do not believe Israel can destroy them since Israel HAS not destroyed them...

    Do not confuse Israel's restraint with lack of ability with or without USA support...

    If Israel survival is at stake? USA can kiss Israel's ass... remember it was the USA that screwed over Israel in 1967 allowing the arab world (egypt) to violate peace treaties...

    And if you think Israel cannot fight? Guess again...

    No, I think Israel is trying everything it can do for peace INCLUDING giving land to barbaric, death cult loving inbred animals.

    Israeli patience is running out.... all it will take is ONE successful arab attack (remembering that israel STOPS hundreds of suicide bombings, infiltrations a MONTH, not counting the attacks that occur that do little or no damage)

    As we speak Hamas, Hezbollah, Syria, Iran, are rearming and getting ready to attack to destroy israel, not to settle a border dispute. When the shit hits the fan Israel will fit back and it wont be pretty...

    If the USA chooses to screw the Jews of israel again?

    Israel will go it alone...

    America is not even 300 years old... the world has been screwing the jews for over 2400 years, we are used to it...

    But now?

    Israel IS and will not go quietly into the ovens...

  45. What I saw, wi"o", was an Israel that did not have the ammunition it needed to move forward, once the US stopped the logistical flow.

    If the Israelis, going alone, start a conflict with Iran, they will be standing alone. Which will not portend well, for Israelis.

    Believe what you will, you were sure that Obama would not carry Ohio, nor win the national election. Perhaps you can see the future better, from further afield, then you can see it close to home.

    I tend to doubt it, though.

  46. But it is the main thrust of Mr Morris's contention, that the US through Team Obama will abandon Israel, I doubt. That they will force Israel into making concessions, I do not doubt, at all.

    We'll see just how independent the Israelis are, or think they are.

    That Israel is smaler than Maricopa County, means it is a City State, one that cannot survive a real exchange with a nuclear Islam.

    And Islam is already nuclearized.

    Which is why I've always claimed that the real threat, from Islam, comes from Pakistan, where they have already exported nuclear components. First to the NorKs, who then provide Pakistan with plausible deniability when the Syrians start to 'nuke up'.

    The Sauds can deliver the nuclear punch, they have the aircraft. Which after the Israeli were to destroy Iranian assets, would lleave the Sauds and the Sunni the last men standing in the Region.

  47. Coleman leads by two votes; Star Tribune projects Franken win.

  48. desert rat said...
    What I saw, wi"o", was an Israel that did not have the ammunition it needed to move forward, once the US stopped the logistical flow.

    Choice of weapons DR...

    Israel had enough to just LEVEL towns and villages from the air WITH the PEOPLE still there IF they HAD to.

    They also COULD have used the cluster bombs ON the POPULATION instead of the areas of land void of humans....

    These are effective anti-human weapons....

    DR: If the Israelis, going alone, start a conflict with Iran, they will be standing alone. Which will not portend well, for Israelis.

    Israel did not START the conflict, Iran has... and whether it goes well or not the conflict is about to go to the next page...

    DR: Believe what you will, you were sure that Obama would not carry Ohio, nor win the national election. Perhaps you can see the future better, from further afield, then you can see it close to home.

    I tend to doubt it, though.

    I was wrong about our President Elect, he did fool most of the people into voting for him... That doesnt change the fact that Iran, Hezbollah, Hamas, & others are committed to the genocide of the Jews...

    One hardly has anything to do with the other...

    Iran & company are on a war path against all things jewish this is very clear, if you cant see it, well I guess that's your choice...

    My point? israel has weapons it did not use in the last war, and IF iran goes forward with HER war plans?

    shit will fly....