Friday, June 29, 2007

What Real Fascism Looks Like

Imagine for a moment that the American ambassador to France summons the organizer of the Cannes Film Festival to his office and after a meeting the two announce that it would be best for France if Michael Moore’s latest movie is not shown in the country.

Unthinkable, right? Yet that’s essentially what happened this week in Thailand.

The Iranian government succeeded in getting Persepolis removed the Bangkok Film Festival line up. The film by French-based Iranian dissident Marjane Satrapi is opposed by the Iranian theocracy because it "presents an unrealistic face of the achievements and results of the glorious Islamic Revolution in some of its parts".

In withdrawing the offending film, the festival organizer said, “It's a good film, but there are other considerations."

Those other considerations include a barbarically violent “insurgency” in southern Thailand where Islamists are fighting Buddhist oppression by cutting the heads off women and children with dull machetes.

Considering that Iran is an equal opportunity jihad supporter, I am almost tempted to wonder if Iran has a hand in the “insurgency.” Nah, that’s unthinkable too.

But for all the critics who feverishly imagine the United States throwing around its influence to crush dissent, this is a useful lesson in how fascism actually works. The threat of physical violence is what is censoring Persepolis.

Fascism always comes down to physical pain. And pain is very persuasive. That's why it's employed so frequently and effectively by proxies in places like Gaza, Kashmir, and Thailand as well as by governments such as Cuba, Zimbabwe, North Korea.

And that’s why it’s hard to take seriously those who go on national television to complain about the crushing of dissent here in the U.S. In the real world "speaking truth to power" can get you crushed quite literally.

Thursday, June 28, 2007

Tony Blair Departs 10 Downing Street

With the baying of assorted malcontents in the far background, Tony Blair and family leave the Prime Minister's residence marking another yet dignified (if not entirely peaceful) transition of power in a civilized Western democracy.

Compared to France’s recent transition I can conclude that the Brits have nicer cars but the French have prettier women. No surprise there.

Friday, June 22, 2007


Passing through Delaware reminds me once again that I’ve never actually met anyone from Delaware. I’ve never set foot in Delaware. And most disturbingly, when the word "Delaware" is uttered, I can’t picture anything.

Try a little state-based word association.

What comes to your mind when you think of Idaho? Potatoes of course.
Texas? Oil, black gold.
Vermont? Cows with unshaven legs.

Now think of Delaware. What do you see . . . DuPont? Articles of incorporation? How about the Delaware Water Gap? Nope, that’s in Pennsylvania.

I’m telling you, Delaware is a sham.

No one ever gets on or gets off the Amtrak train when it stops in Delaware. There’s never anyone on the platform, or in the station, or anywhere in sight. Even the “advertisements” in the clearly fake railway terminal imply a penchant for obscurity.

(click on the pictures to get a better look)

What do you see as you cross the “state”?

There are a lot of deserted street corners. And when I say deserted, I mean there hasn’t been anything other than feral dogs using these streets for the past decade or so. I guess everyone is down at the luxury yacht registry.

What about industry? Surely there must be some productive blue collar employment opportunities in this colorless state.

Here is a typical “factory” in Delaware complete with elaborate ductwork, spools of cable, and forklift pallets of cardboard packaging. What’s missing in this picture perfect generic factory? Factory workers. Are they all at lunch? Not at 3:35pm, they’re not.

And it the middle of this people-less community, what do we find? A high security facility of some sort. The fences, the cameras, the concertina wire – what sort of attack are they expecting? And who would be doing the attacking . . . there’s no one within miles of the place.

Clearly this is the “safe undisclosed location” from which Dick Cheney runs the real government.

This is where the price of oil is set worldwide, where the controlled detonation of WTC Building 7 was planned and ordered, where the mysterious crash site in Shanksville, PA was simulated, where the cancellation of Rosie O’Donnell’s contract on The View was called for, where all the tapes of “Get Smart,” “The Man From U.N.C.L.E.” and “The Thunderbirds” are hidden.

Delaware is nondescript. It's purposely nondescript. It's as if the state motto is "Move Along. Nothing to See Here." This kind of obscurity can only be by design.

I think I'm onto something big here. If this is my last post, then you I'm right.

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Islamists and Truthers

Here is a rather typical Islamofascist video that seems to find its way onto YouTube all too easily these days.

The other genre of video lunacy proliferating on YouTube is the 9/11 Truther rant. This comes up in many forms, the most famous of which is the Loose Change series.

I love this clip of two utterly unhinged LC Truthers confronted by dispassionate geeks from Popular Mechanics who debunk claims that the World Trade Center was a controlled demolition rather than a suicide attack by the religious fanatics idolized in video lunacy genre #1 above.

What to make of this disconnect with reality? Why are there Truthers at all when there are plenty of people falling all over them selves to claim responsibility for the 9/11 attacks? Do they really think Mohammad Atta was working for Controlled Demolition Corporation rather than Al Qaeda?

My theory on this is pretty simple.

The people who believe that the Bush Administration planned and executed a vast conspiratorial program to stage what would look like an attack on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon are clinging to what they know is untrue because the truth itself is too disturbing for them to bear.

That truth is that there is a fascist political movement fueled by religious intolerance and petrodollars that poses a very real threat to the United States and every other liberal society. Perhaps the most disturbing element is that George W. Bush has pinned his legacy on countering this political movement with violence if necessary.

To accept that Al Qaeda attacked the Twin Towers and the Pentagon as part of a virulently illiberal political agenda would be to concede that on some fundamental level Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld, and all the neo-cons of legend are correct in their estimation of the threat.

To many people – including the 35% of Democrats who believe 9/11 was orchestrated by the Bush Administration – that truth is simply too hard to swallow.

It's far more comforting to believe that thousands of government employees secretly worked on "Operation Reichstag" for months if not years to bring about the 9/11 attacks in order to justify a war of conquest against the peaceful people of the Middle East.

That fits a bit more reassuringly into their pre-existing ideological beliefs.

I'm still waiting for the GS-9 whistleblower to come forward with a thousand slide PowerPoint deck explaining the program and reams of memos about confidentiality, diversity training, Hatch Act restrictions, T&E policy, and a baseball cap with the "Op Reichstag" logo that was handed out at the annual family picnic back in 2001.

In the meantime, the actual fascists are being trapped and slaughtered in Baqubah right now in Operation Arrowhead Ripper.

As Michael Yon reports, our guys are not dropping leaflets asking for the "insurgents" to surrender. They're searching for them and killing them, one by one.

A disturbing reality. But real nonetheless.

And finally, here's a sign of hope. Watch a bunch of jihadis break the cycle of violence by surrendering to an aircraft as it flies menacingly over their heads.

Jihad is over. If you want it.