“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."

Sunday, June 24, 2012

The Arab Spring has Sprung

The Egyptian people wanted to participate in democracy. Obama and Clinton withdrew support from Mubarak and encouraged the "Egyptian people.” Democracy reigns. Now Israel has some real problems.


  1. Egypt will become a Sharia country. That is it for the Middle East.

  2. We Mississippians have had people waving "Holy" Books in our faces, and spouting Barbaric nonsense at us for a couple of Centuries, and we've survived.

    1. There's this difference, the people spouting the barbaric nonsense haven't, at least recently, been out to control every last detail of your lives.

      It is sad to see Egypt go south but the vote does appear to have been more or less fair, and fairly counted. May well be the first and last time for that.


    2. Christians make up about 10% of Egyptians. Bad news for them. Seems to be said widely that Assad's fall will be bad news for Christians there. There doesn't seem to be much good news for Christians around the middle east these days. Maybe they should all move to Mississippi. At least the locals there probably will not burn their churches down.


    3. No, they just want to tell me who I can go to bed with, and what I can do there. They want to tell my daughter that she can't practice birth control, and they want to tell my son that he can't smoke a little weed.

      Of course, they used to use the bible to tell people which restaurant they could go to, which water fountain and bathroom they could use, and, basically, who could and could not vote.

      Nah, those "good book thumpers" don't try to control others' lives. Not much.

    4. Go reread the old testament, then come back and tell me that your "good book" isn't more similar, than not, to "their" good book.

    5. It isn't my good book in the first place. And the understanding and interpretation of it has changed over time. Those that used the Bible to justify slavery were matched by the Wilberforces of the world using the Bible to get rid of slavery. And there was slavery in Mississippi among the Cherokee too and it is hard to say it was their book. Christianity in the world was probably the biggest force in ending slavery, which still hangs on in some moslem lands. The Bible and the Koran are quite unlike. And no one in Mississippi is trying very hard to deny birth control to anyone. Or fool around with anyone's private parts. And prohibition ended long ago. And so did Jim Crow.


  3. We need more of this?

    U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton condemns Syrian downing of Turkish fighter jet as "brazen and unacceptable act.”

  4. Our good ass-stabbing friends in Turkey are threatened because on of their planes got shot down over Syria. How awful..:

    ISTANBUL — Turkey’s foreign minister said Sunday that his country would hold emergency talks with NATO in the next few days over the downing of one of its jet fighters by Syria, claiming the plane was attacked in international airspace.

    They neglected to mention…

    ANKARA, Turkey — Turkish warplanes have bombed Kurdish rebel hideouts deep inside northern Iraq, and Kurdish rebels killed one policeman and wounded three others in a roadside bomb attack inside Turkey on Sunday, authorities said.

  5. ...and Clinton is up to her ass in collusion with Turkey to attack Syria, so we can really get the party roiling.

  6. Obama is probably slicing his way across the tenth rough shot of the day.

  7. Meanwhile, the band plays on

    Temperatures are rising and soon the streets of New York will throng with muscular men in very short shorts stomping along to Lady Gaga. To be honest they would be doing it even if it was raining. Summer is officially here, New York's 2012 Gay Pride is in full swing and the parade – one of the world's largest – is set for Sunday. And this year there is plenty to celebrate.

  8. All you really need to know about Egypt is that they have to import half of their food, and they no longer have oil exports to pay for it.

    Some people are going to die over there, and the Lester Crowns of the world are going to be paying the John Hagees to thump the book, and show pictures of wimmin gettin' beat, and Christians getting shot - all in attempt to whip up some War Hysteria, and get more of our kids killed for some godawful reason that wouldn't make a bit of sense in a Grade B Movie.

    1. I'm tired of the War Machine. If we don't have the money for healthcare for our own citizens, we sure as hell don't have the money to be mucking around over there.

  9. The Egyptian Army still owns 40% of their economy.

    The military wrote the Constitution that took the power to rule from both the Parliament and the President, leaving it with the Chief of Staff of the Army.

    The US will continue to supply military aid to the Army.
    Which is only type of aid we supplied Egypt before the "Spring".

    The electoral window dressing has ben changed, not the substance of governance.

    Just like here, in the good old USA.
    This past electoral cycle or the next.
    No change charted or in sight.

    The Arab Spring was a fraud, so now it's "Summertime", and all is well on the Mid-eastern front.

  10. That is the game, to keep dragging us into wars in an area where we have no business.

  11. An influential federal judge shut down a high-profile patent case involving Apple Inc. and Google Inc.'s Motorola Mobility unit, rejecting their use of a legal weapon at the heart of the current smartphone patent wars.

    The ruling Friday by Richard Posner, an appellate-court judge designated to hear the case in Chicago, is a blow to the campaign by Apple and its rivals to use patent suits to block competitors' progress.

  12. The warchests of the super-PACs represent a change in the financial well-being of the parties. In 2008, Obama and Democrats heavily outspent Republicans.


    Given their advantage, Republicans have the luxury of experimenting. In a House district in New York, they bought a campaign popup on YouTube, expecting about 2 percent of viewers would click to watch their ad.

    As it turned out, 15 percent did.

  13. Last week Tony Nicklinson who has “locked in” syndrome after suffering a massive stroke, sought a ruling exempting doctors from criminal prosecution if they assisted his suicide.


    While the law forced medical staff to stand aside and not intervene in the case of the 22 year old Jehovah’s Witness, even though the man had no intention of ending his life, they were prevented from intervening to help patients such as Tony Nicklinson die at a time of their choosing.


    While the legal distinction was clear for doctors treating the Jehovah's Witness, the ethical one was not. Both patients wanted to exercise their personal autonomy but only one - the Jehovah’s Witness - was able to do so, because he needed no assistance.

  14. With both President Obama and Mitt Romney actively courting the Latino vote this past week, it seems like a good time to learn more about out neighbors to the south by revisiting last year's interview with Ask a Mexican! columnist and recent Reason contributor Gustavo Arellano.

    Here is the Original text from the April 2011 release:

    Since 2004, Gustavo Arellano has written the wildly popular - and wildly politically incorrect - Ask a Mexican! column in the OC Weekly. In each installment, the California-born Arellano answers reader queries about Mexican-American mores that rarely come up in day-to-day conversation.


    In April, Reason's Nick Gillespie talked with Arellano about U.S. natives' attitudes toward Mexicans, whether half-Mexican Anthony Quinn's performance in Zorba the Greek or Jack Black's Mexican-wrestler turn in Nacho Libre was more offensive, whether Mexicans can or should assimilate, the effect of the drug war on border relations, and much more.

    Gustavo Arellano

  15. The good news?

    the mask of "arab" peace partners is in the trash

    obama's plan for bringing the moslem brotherhood to power in many arab nations is taking shape.

    and there will be war..

    just as obama wants

    israel will be surrounded again by nations that are committed to it's destruction, just was obama promised the palestinians, the islamists, hamas and the moslem brotherhood before he was even elected.

    why is this good news?

    israel will be free to take her enemies down a few pegs.

    122 rockets shot into israel by hamas (the moslem brotherhood's offshoot) and not a word from Obama other than calling the new prez and congratulating them...

    I hope the arab spring becomes the arab winter and the arab and persian world gets what they are sowing..


    so let's raise a glass of scotch to the self inflicted shot into the brain of the arab/islamic peoples...

    may their death be painful, slow and torturous

  16. not to worry deuce, America is neutral like the swiss! America sees nothing wrong with the moslem brotherhood...

  17. The U.S. military has awarded contracts valued at nearly $10 billion to provide food for troops in Afghanistan, amid a billing dispute with its longstanding supplier Supreme Foodservice GmbH.


    Rep. John Tierney (D., Mass.), ranking member of the national security subcommittee of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, said his committee would look into the "blatant mismanagement of this contract" by the Defense Department.


    The Commission on Wartime Contracting in Iraq and Afghanistan, an independent panel established by Congress to study the problems of war-zone spending, singled out the Afghanistan food-service contract as a prominent example of government mismanagement in its final 2011 report.

  18. Let's also drink to the Supreme Court smacking down Obama and ObamaCare.

    Other court news -

    The court was unanimous in rejecting the government’s arguments that federal discrimination laws protect employees of religious organizations who perform some duties central to the group’s faith.

    The justices in Hosanna-Tabor Evangelical Lutheran Church and School v. EEOC for the first time recognized a “ministerial exception” to workplace discrimination laws. They dismissed the government’s view that the fired employee’s claim should be viewed as if she worked for a labor union or social club protected by the First Amendment’s guarantee of free association.

    “We cannot accept the remarkable view that the Religion Clauses have nothing to say about a religious organization’s freedom to select its own ministers,” Roberts wrote.

    In United States v. Jones, the government argued that it did not need a warrant to attach a Global Positioning System device to a suspected drug dealer’s car and monitor his movements for a month. The court again disagreed unanimously, although the justices split on whether Antoine Jones’s constitutional rights were violated when the device was put on his car or whether the government’s surveillance compromised his privacy rights.


  19. It's a big old goofy world. It's not 'normal' for a military to run a country, which should be there for the defense of the country and not its governance. But sometimes it's the better option. We have been paying 2 or 3 billion a year to the Egyptian military mostly as a peace payment, and they have abided by the agreements, until now. People here moaned and groaned about those payments which almost seem like chump change these days, and well worth the price. Who knows, we may be back to a closing of the Suez Canal crisis or some such one of these days.


  20. Here is the warmonger Netanyahu -

    Israel jittery after Brotherhood victory in Egypt

    Conflict in the Middle East

    JERUSALEM (AP) -- Israel's prime minister says he hopes peace with Egypt will remain intact after it chose an Islamist president.

    Israel has been apprehensive about the possibility of the Muslim Brotherhood taking the top spot in neighboring Egypt, because the veteran Islamist group does not formally recognize Israel.

    Israel and Egypt signed a peace treaty in 1979.

    Reacting to the announcement that the Muslim Brotherhood candidate won, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu hoped the treaty would stand.

    "Israel expects to continue cooperation with the Egyptian government on the basis of the peace agreement between the two countries, which is of interest to the two peoples and contributes to regional stability," Netanyahu said in a statement Sunday.

    Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood has said it would maintain the treaty but would demand changes in it.


  21. Long, hot summer predicted on Israel's southern border -

    Th Egyptian military is losing control over the situation out in the dunes, and the weapons are everywhere, coming in from Libya too. And some of the weapons are getting really sophisticated and lethal. All this is obviously Netanyahu's fault. And what's he do? Builds a wall to try to keep the barbarians at bay, but rockets go over walls. The the toll of Israeli dead and injured will continue apace, and we never hear about it here.


  22. Fancy a weekend in Philadelphia?

    A 24-year-old woman was in critical condition Sunday night and two men were hospitalized with gunshot wounds after they were shot during what police say may have been a domestic dispute in Cobbs Creek.

    Cops said gunfire erupted outside on Irving Street near 61st just before 9 p.m. The woman, struck in the face by gunfire, was rushed to the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania by police. She was listed in critical condition.

    A 19-year-old man was also shot several times in both of his shoulders. He was dropped off at HUP in a private auto that fled the area before police arrived, according to investigators. That man was also listed in critical condition and was being held as a prisoner Sunday night as police investigated the possibility that he may have initiated the shooting.

    A 25-year-old man was also hit in the forearm, cops said. He was taken to HUP and listed in stable condition.

    Four people were killed, including a bartender at a popular South Philadelphia tavern, and four others were injured in multiple shootings and one stabbing late Saturday night into early Sunday morning, police said.

    The assaults took place in five neighborhoods, with six of the victims shot or stabbed in just 10 minutes..

    The identities of most of the dead and injured have not been released. Police provided the following detailed timeline of violence:

    At 11:44 p.m. Saturday, police responded to a report of a shooting in the 600 block of North 38th Street in Mantua. Officers found a 26-year-old man who had been shot in the right arm and back.

    He was taken to Presbyterian Medical Center by a private vehicle and pronounced dead at 12:15 p.m.

    Around 1:10 a.m. Sunday, an officer traveling south on 40th Street near Market Street in University City heard gunshots. The officer saw a man running south in the unit block of North Preston Street, who then collapsed in front of the patrol car.

    He was taken to Presbyterian Medical Center, where he was pronounced dead at 3:15 a.m.

    Around 1:15 a.m. Sunday, 44-year-old George Fox, the bartender, was found unconscious behind the bar at T-Barr's in the 2200 block of South Eighth Street. Fox, who had been stabbed during an apparent robbery, was pronounced dead at the scene around 1:30 a.m.

    At 1:19 a.m. Sunday, police responded to a report of a person with a gun in the 3200 block of Spangler Street in North Philadelphia and discovered three male shooting victims. Several cars had also been shot.

    A 33-year-old victim, who had been shot in the head, was pronounced dead at the scene. The other two sustained a variety of injuries and were taken to Temple University Hospital, where they are listed in stable condition.

    A fourth victim, a 34-year-old male, arrived at Einstein Medical Center on his own with a gunshot wound to the leg. He is also in stable condition.

    Around 4 a.m. Sunday, a 45-year-old man was shot in the left buttock during a possible robbery. The man told police he was walking when he saw three men sitting in a car parked in the 1400 block of Peach Street in the Carroll Park section.

    The men approached the victim and asked him for a light. The victim believed he was going to be robbed and started to run. He then heard a pop and felt a burning pain. He arrived home to find a hole in the seat of his pants.

    He was treated Hahnemann University Hospital.

  23. None of the victims reminded Obama of his children.

  24. Philadelphia police were looking for two men in connection with a Sunday night shooting at a basketball court that left four people wounded.

    Around 7:23 p.m., police were called to Kemble Park near Ogontz and Olney Avenues and found four injured people. A women, 20, had been shot in the left thigh. Two 20-year-old men, had each been shot in the right shin, and another man, whose age was not known, was shot in the left ankle.

    All four victims were taken to Einstein Hospital and listed in stable condition.

    The two suspects were last seen fleeing north on 16th Street, according to police.

  25. They could have been Amish, you think?

    An off-duty police officer witnessed the shooting, investigators said. He was being interviewed at the Northwest Detective Division Sunday night. Police said the shooters were described as two young black men between the ages of 18 and 21, one wearing a black shirt and the other wearing a gray shirt. They took off after the shooting, and no arrests were made.

    i guess not.

  26. Shekinah and Hakeem are not Arabs.

    Meanwhile, police on Sunday arrested Shekinah Williams, 28, who they say is the second shooter wanted in the murder of Clarice Douglas, a mother of three fatally caught in the crossfire of an April shootout between two thugs on Corlies Street near Dickinson in Grays Ferry. The other alleged shooter in that slaying, Hakeem Burley, was wounded in the shooting and already in police custody.

  27. Police are searching for a man in connection with two violent robberies in the Queen Village area earlier this week.

    On Saturday around 6:15 a.m., a woman was walking along Christian Street near 4th when a man approached her from behind, grabbed her by her neck and assaulted her. He then took her purse and fled the scene, police said.

    A similar robbery unfolded around 7:25 a.m. on Sunday, police said. A woman was walking on Catharine Street near 6th and noticed a man who was circling the block on his bicycle. The man used a white t-shirt to conceal his face. He approached the woman from behind, grabbed her by her neck and forced her to the ground. He snatched her purse — which contained $300, credit cards and her ID — and fled the scene.

    Police Tuesday released surveillance footage of the man and are asking for help from the public to identify and arrest him.

    I viewed the security tape and was shocked, simply shocked I tell you, to notice the youth could have been one of Obama’s childs.


  29. America's Black population is morphing into the "palestinians" of the USA