Novelist Muriel Spark died on April 15 and I feel remiss for not mentioning it sooner, Muriel Spark, 1918-2006
What seems at first like caricature often turns out to pass, for the moment anyway, as unvarnished reportage. Generally, the reports are not encouraging. Perhaps, deep down, "the facts" themselves express a species of caricature; and perhaps, on reflection, one realizes this. Spark's trick is to coax us into musing that, if one were to go deeper still, maybe . . . The presentiment often terminates in an ellipsis, a feeling of uneasiness, anxiety. Not for nothing is the imperative "Memento Mori"–Remember that you shall die–the title of one of her best known and most accomplished books. In that sober tale, all the characters are aged and more than a few are senile. "Being over seventy," one of them observes, "is like being engaged in a war. All our friends are going or gone and we survive amongst the dead and dying as on a battlefield."
You Don't Know Me: Songs of Cindy Walker by Willie Nelson
The fired official, Mary O. McCarthy, “categorically denies being the source of the leak,” one of McCarthy’s friends and former colleagues, Rand Beers, said Monday after speaking to McCarthy. Beers said he could not elaborate on this denial and McCarthy herself did not respond to a request for comment left by NEWSWEEK on her home answering machine.
Stepping back and observing the events it seems we had, and not the first time by any means, a conservative lynch mob that tried and hung Mary McCarthy ( I see the story as still unfolding. For conservatives the trial and sentencing is over, they just need to set a date for the hanging). Rule of law in America has certainly taken its lumps under the auspices of conservative rule and the internet harpies of conservatism continue to do their part to keep America in a never ending state of fear, and political discourse in the gutter. The mob as mobs always do trampled over justice, used the sin of omission like a crutch, and are doing a good as job as any terrorist in undermining making America values. There is no need to wait for Osama Bin Laden's next video of delusional rants, just listen to conservative policy makers or right-wing pundits. Propaganda and fear are their tools of trade. I have tried to think of a republic that has survived that embraced propaganda, paranoia and delusion as its national vision and I cannot think of one. Reading the shrill rants about "Democratic moles" is akin to going to a Disneyland of sick twisted values. On a certain level they're entertaining, yet on another level its like watching an abusive parent being dragged off by the police screaming about how much they love the child whose legs they just broke. Hullabaloo writes about the clear attempt by Bush's supporters to criminalize any opinion that deviates from America's unofficial politburo, Agitating For A Crackdown
I wrote yesterday about the re-emergence of the shrieking harpies as the Republicans go down to defeat. I was speaking specifically of the wingnut gasbags, but Robert Parry points out that it is more than rhetoric. They are agitating to criminalize dissent.
Years ago, feet dangling from the edge of the sofa unable to touch the ground I had this general awe of adulthood. Adults could reach things I could not, they knew more words, they could make food appear like magic, they all seemed to know so much and were obviously so much better then me. I was told that I would grow up some day and fully participate in this wonderful world of knowledge and wisdom. Turns out that many children never grow up, they just get older and even more spiteful in their pettiness.
Lawyers, Guns, and Money on the petty unturths of Chris Hitchens, Blech
Suffice it to say that Hitch can't quite manage to recommend the notion of secret CIA prisons in Eastern Europe, but he doesn't have a problem with completely ignoring the issue by bringing the focus back to Joe Wilson. It Hitch's world, a CIA agent relating the fact of secret prisons is exactly, exactly the same as an administration official blowing a CIA agent's cover in an effort to discredit a critic.
Bush said he'd sat in a California church on Sunday near a mother and stepfather grieving for their son who had been killed in Iraq. "I also want to let you know that before you commit troops that you must do everything that you can to solve the problem diplomatically," he commented. "And I can look you in the eye and tell you I feel I tried to solve the problem diplomatically to the max and would have committed troops both in Afghanistan and Iraq, knowing what I know today."
From what I understand its not uncommon for someone who is mentally unbalanced to be able to look people in the eye and lie. My police friends encounter this behavior almost daily. ( Just to note, like myself most liberals supported going after Bin Laden in Afghanistan; for Bush to conflat Iraq and Afghanistan is just more stagecraft manipulation.) Bush Insists ‘I Didn’t Want War,’ Overwhelming Evidence Suggests Otherwise
It seemed clear that Bush had made up his mind to take military action, even if the timing was not yet decided. [Downing Street Minutes, 7/23/02]
They're the ones I feel sorry for,
because it'll be over for me…
…but they'll have to go on remembering
for the rest of their lives.
A man just can't take the law into his
own hands and hang people…
everybody in the world…
…because then he's not just
breaking one law, but all laws.
Law is a lot more than words
you put in a book…
…or judges or lawyers or sheriffs
you hire to carry it out.
It's everything people ever have
found out about justice…
…and what's right and wrong.
It's the very conscience of humanity.
from The Ox Bow Incident, Script – Dialogue Transcript