The Spectacle Blog

Re: Chertoff (and Jon Stewart)

By on 3.5.06 | 8:44PM

Quin: Many thanks. I have no concreted prejudice against spec ops guys for that job (some of my best friends are...) But they are used to moving quick and light. Maybe D'OHS needs a heavy forces guy at the top and a spec ops type as deputy?

Meanwhile - watching the incredibly boring Oscars - I'm wondering if Jon Stewart is usually this bad. He's not dying up there, he's dead. Frozen with stage fright? I don't know, but isn't there someone in that crowd who could slip him a Prozac? Be merciful, people.

Yes to Jed, question to Wlady

By on 3.5.06 | 8:33PM

Jed -- Re your call for a senior command guy to head Homeland Security, that fits what I meant to say when I said this: somebody with actual manpower-organization experience, somebody who actually has dealt with big mobilizations in times of crisis. The next thought I had, when I started to bring in special ops, got interrupted by a fire alarm. To be clear, I agree with every word you wrote here:

Quin: If Chertoff gets the boot, which he should, there should be a housecleaning. Removing him isn't enough. And his replacement shouldn't be a spec ops guy. The whole idea is to get someone who can plan things on a large scale or small, is used to thinking in C3I terms -- command, communications and intelligence -- and has real operational experience in senior command levels. Time to separate the staff weenies and academics from the TACAMO crew. Take charge and move out, people. Posted By: Jed Babbin

Shunning Oscar

By on 3.5.06 | 6:53PM

I don't have too much punditry to add to the particulars of tonight's Oscars, but here's a column I wrote on the cult of Jon Stewart last year and another one on how silly it is to get worked up over the Academy Awards. I will say, however, the one Best Picture contender I saw, Crash, was just about the most ham-handed bit of pseudo-sociological foolishness I've ever seen; truly xenophobic in its paranoid vision of America as the ultimate racist society. Therefore, I believe Brokeback Mountain can and will be upset. Carry on.

Huge Anti-Terror Rally in Bahrain

By on 3.5.06 | 4:33PM

Gateway Pundit has a round-up. And Andrew Sullivan notes: "All this happened last Wednesday. Have you seen a mention of it in the MSM? Me neither."

Sadr Watch

By on 3.5.06 | 12:13PM

The AP reports on Moqtada al Sadr's latest moves in the pursuit of Iraqi nationalism:

"Extinguish the flames of the sectarian treachery," said the followers of radical Shiite cleric Muqtada al-Sadr and members of the Sunni Endowment, a government agency responsible for Sunni mosques and shrines. "Every drop of blood shed is a waste."

Just so. Why would a package of lies benefit al Sadr more than this basic truth? His support has gone in the past to Shi'ite Prime Minister Ibrahim al Jaafari. But now the PM appears as an obstacle to unity, and al Sadr has shown a consistent willingness to compromise in order to maintain and consolidate political power. My suspicion remains that the power he desires is that independent of Iran. Add to that an intuition that al Sadr will let his support for al Jaafari slip -- and that his profile will continue to rise as a force for anti-sectarianism.

Oscar speak

By on 3.5.06 | 11:17AM

Words to watch for from an Oscar source re tonight's major acceptance speeches. Count who thanks his/her mom, who thanks his/her Dad, who thanks God Almighty. Since 1992, of the 42 major waward speeches (actor, actress, movie) only five actresses have thanked mom, one actor has thanked mom, none have thanked dad alone, only one has thanked God -- Mr. Gibson.

Also, words used only once in all the speeches include "Holocaust," "uxoriousness," "WMD."

Brownie’s Rehab

By on 3.5.06 | 8:48AM

He sat down with Chris Wallace this morning on Fox News Sunday. I won't get into the he said/she said business of this. But does anyone else notice that Michael Brown's qualifications aren't even a matter of discussion anymore? Wallace is a tough interviewer, so he's not softballing Brown. The total disappearance of this matter shows how disingenuous that charge was: now that Brown's opposing the White House on the Katrina response, he's a respected expert.

Oscars Tonite

By on 3.5.06 | 8:26AM

Presenting the New, Politically Correct Wal-Mart

By on 3.4.06 | 3:38PM

Wal-Mart has buckled under the union and left-wing pressure that they sampled in Massachusetts and decided to stock the morning after pill at all pharmacies nationwide. I wrote about the Massachusetts nonsense a couple weeks ago.

This is now the Wal-Mart that is calling on the federal government to provide health insurance. Corporations should learn that giving in to the socialist tide only emboldens critics and is bad for business. Now that Wal-Mart is running scared, the lefties will push harder. Look for other states to take action similar to Maryland's discriminatory bill that forces the retailer to provide more comprehensive health insurance.

I would also guess that free market conservatives and other defenders of Wal-Mart may be less likely to defend the behemoth from the left-wing onslaught. If it won't defend itself, why bother?

Iran on the Global Attack

By on 3.4.06 | 9:45AM

Best signals source reports that on Friday morning 3/3 prayers and sermons in Baghdad and throughout the critical Sunni and Shia mosques of Iraq (and including the critical Wahhabist mosques in Arabia) the message was the same in each case: the Americans are to blame for the Samarra shrine bombing, for the spasmodic mass murder since the shrine bombing, and for the continued threat to peace in Iraq.

In blunt sum, the American occupation of Iraq in order to establish a democracy where there has only been clan warfare and tyranny since the Crusades is now presented to the obedient worshippers as the cause of the clan warfare and tyranny in the Sunni Triangle, the Shia holy sites, the Baghdad slums.