July 30, 2004

Oh, Right, That

In all the insulin-injecting excitement that's been going on around here this week, I forgot my own weblogging anniversary. It was, uh, two days ago?--July 28, yes, that's right. This is typical of me. I'd forget my own birthday if it weren't for all the lovely presents.

Anyway, you don't get any presents for maintaining a weblog for a year, particularly not when you do such a bad job at it as I do. I think what you are supposed to do if you have a weblog is write some awful "What I've Learned About Blogging" post, and folks, I hope you don't mind too much, but we're totally going to skip that.

Because if you want to learn about weblogging, really the only thing to do is get yourself a weblog. You type in http://www.blogger.com and you follow the instructions--instructions which are so clearly written and easy to follow that I have signed up for at least three blogs that way, then promptly forgotten what I named the blog and what password I used to access it--and you pay no money and, voila! You have a weblog. It's that simple.

Or you could always do what I did, and register for one accidentally on Journalspace, home of my old posts (because I am both too lazy and too stupid to figure out how to get them out of there), but I really don't recommend that if you can help it.

Happy blogiversary to me, hooray.

Posted by Ilyka at 11:47 PM | Comments (13)

Very Suggestive Selling: One-time Special Offer!

So I'm cruising a restaurant menu online, a menu from one of my favoritest restaurants actually, a restaurant owned by a gentleman named George, and I get to the description for this item:

BF03 - Sujuk

George's own hot, beef sausage bathed in lemon juice. Served with fresh tomato slices.

And I'm thinking, George needs to be more careful in the kitchen.

Posted by Ilyka at 11:34 PM | Comments (2)

July 29, 2004

Stuck in the Middle

Several--okay, many--weeks ago, I asked people to supply me with definitions of the terms "moderate" and "centrist."

I had fascinating responses, but not much consensus, which eventually led me to the "duh" realization that the lack of consensus was inevitable. I was asking people to pin the tail on the great gray indeterminate blob of people who are invested in neither the right nor the left wing of American politics.

See? Duh.

Also too late, I realized that there are two distinct subsets of the middle: First, let's take the middle folks who don't care very much about politics at all. They either seldom vote, or vote without giving it much thought. Maybe they vote as their parents did, or as their in-laws would like, or the way their cousins who are "really up on these things" recommend, or the way that will ensure Norm Macdonald has another four years in which to refine his Bob Dole impression, or--

Oh, wait. That last was me in 1996.

How time flies.

I think it was Tucker Carlson I heard recently define a "swing voter" as someone who wasn't well-versed in the issues, who didn't really care one way or the other; he put all swing voters into the first group. I thought that was a dismissive and ignorant way to refer to people who look at Kerry, look at Bush, wince, and go, "This is it? This is the best we can do? I got Chimp and Lurch to choose from? You're kidding, right? Please tell me you're kidding."

Some people will always be apathetic about voting. Some people will always be bored by politics. But it seemed to me that maybe some people were bored by politics because the choices they were given were so uninspiring. Maybe the poor quality of the candidates caused the apathy, or maybe the apathy caused the poor quality of the candidates, or maybe it was a combination of both.

I think there is another subset of the middle: People who are cognizant of the issues, but can't quite marry up with either party's full platform. And I think I'm in that subset.

I mentioned in a comment thread the other day that I'm a lousy Republican, and this is true politically and culturally. I support gay marriage. I am pro-choice. I favor increases to the minimum wage. I am leery of faith-based initiatives. Culturally, I'm a really lousy Republican: I like political correctness. There, I said it. I prefer "Asian-American" to "Oriental," "woman" to "lady," "Native American" to "Indian." I prefer that people be addressed and referred to with as much respect and consideration and politeness as can be afforded them.

It gets worse: While I wouldn't support laws restricting their availability in any way, I nonetheless think SUVs suck, and I think if you're a single person who doesn't live in rough terrain or regularly face severe weather and you drive one, odds are good I'd find you a pretentious asshole. I don't believe that white Christian males are now the most discriminated segment of the populace. Gun nuts sometimes make me nervous. I secretly cheered at all the Bennett-bashing and, while not without sympathy for chronic pain sufferers, more than once during the to-do about Limbaugh's drug addiction I thought, "Y'know, if ever a guy had it coming . . . ."

As I said to my brother in an email once, to me the proof that the Democratic Party has really fucked up the last four years is that by virtue of my background and positions on the issues, they should have me all sewn up--and they don't. I'm arrogant enough to view that as their failure, not mine.

I voted for Bush in 2000. It's likely I will vote for him again this year. But I'm a terrible disgrace as a Republican.

And I'd be just as terrible a Democrat, but my objections in that regard are simpler and easier for me to express, and can basically be summarized in two points:

(1) I don't believe government can be a force for good; I believe it is simply a force that can be used to make its citizens do that which they would not otherwise do, period. Thus, I prefer that it be limited.

(2) I don't believe a world without borders is achievable or desirable, and I don't support transnational progressivism.

And we can further simplify those two points as, "I don't like the philosophical bent of either their domestic or their foreign policy."

As nearly as I can tell, I am truly stuck in the middle, and that's not always a happy place to be. The funny thing about doing that little informal survey--or at least, the part that surprised me--was how many people assigned negative descriptions to words like "centrist" and "moderate." Moderates were people "afraid of being cut out of the local social group by taking a stand." A centrist was someone who was "on the fence" or, as my boyfriend put it, and he meant it unflatteringly, "Sandra Day O'Connor." And then there was the crazy dude who said a centrist was "one Mommy & Daddy didn't pay enough attention to within their childhood."

Actually, I think that may have been my favorite comment.

So I wasn't expecting to turn up these negative reactions, and then I thought about it some more and I thought I had as good an explanation for it as I was likely to get with my limited brain power: Whether you call someone a centrist, a moderate, or a swing voter, what you're probably talking about in essence is someone who won't just order off the menu.

And let's face it, a lot of us hate that guy. You know the one. He's the guy who cuts you off at the drive-thru so he can special order everything. He's the guy you hate going to lunch with because his order is always such a production:

"And for you, sir?"

"Yeah, this skillet thing here--" [points]

"The Ranchero Skillet, sir?"

"Yeah--what's that come with?"

(Everything the Ranchero Skillet comes with being listed, of course, in the menu.)

"That comes with your choice of rice, beans, tortillas, biscuit, or papas con chile."

"Lemme get a side salad with that."

"Er, okay, sir, I think we can substitute that for you. Would you like just our house salad, or our Caesar?"

"Hmm. Uhhhh . . . you got any lite dressing for the Caesar?"


"Can I get that Caesar with lite dressing."

"Ah, well, sir, we really only have one Caesar dressing available, but we do have a lite Ranch available with the house salad--"

"Tell you what, how 'bout you just give me the Caesar dressing on the side."

"Oh. Oh, certainly, sir."

"And hold the croutons."

[Writing] "Nooooo . . . croooou-tons . . . ."

"Yeah, and tell them to leave the jalapenos outta my skillet. They gimme heartburn. Oh, and can I get mozzarella on toppa that instead of the colby-jack? I'm tryin' to watch my fat intake."

No one likes that guy. So maybe I shouldn't have been surprised that some people find moderates annoying. Why can't they just choose a platform and stick with it? Why can't they just order off the damn menu?

How many people out there this year, I wonder, don't like the menu?

Posted by Ilyka at 07:28 PM | Comments (11)

July 27, 2004

Now There's a Word You Never Want to Hear

"Fistula." So I guess it wasn't actually rectal bleeding after all; more like "dime-sized mystery aperture on backside" bleeding. I can't decide whether it was a good thing or a bad thing that the vet invited me to look for myself and that, to prove my strong-stomachedness, I did so; but I can tell you it's probably a good thing the f-word up there is also about to be banned from my vocabulary.

(What search term hits will I get from this one, I wonder?)

UPDATE: Look, I don't know why I feel compelled to tell you people about this, but I do and it's my blog so . . . not fistula after all. Abscessed anal gland. Antibiotics should fix. Also cat is diabetic. Also lump on throat is benign cyst and not, as I initially feared, malignancy.

I really have a nerve, because I once made vicious fun of a woman who was blogging about her cat's health problems, but then again I wouldn't turn into a total fucking bitch if someone registered IlykaDamenPop.com and harass men who are to funny what the germ theory of disease is to increased longevity, so there's that on my side.

Posted by Ilyka at 09:36 PM | Comments (2)

July 26, 2004

Brand New Blog

Jim Peacock, the wizard behind the curtain at Snooze Button Dreams and (with help from some friends) Zero Intelligence and Memeblog, has a new site up showcasing his anecdotal creative writing: Protomonkey.

If you're like me, you're probably thinking, "Clearly, this Jim is an overachiever who mucks up the curve for the rest of us, and must therefore be killed at once." And really, as someone who spends too many hours tapping her own skull hoping something, anything post-worthy will fall out, I couldn't agree with you more.

Problem is, like most overachievers, Jim is awfully good at what he does, and I'd miss his storytelling abilities tremendously if he were killed. So I say we let him live for awhile yet, and see how this Protomonkey thing shakes out.

Give it a visit here.

UPDATE: Did I forget to mention that Snooze Button Dreams was a year old Saturday? I did, didn't I? Happy birthday to the only blog out there authored by a guy capable of using the phrase "cremasteric reflex" evocatively in a song parody.

Posted by Ilyka at 07:00 PM | Comments (4)

Four Words

It is indicative of how my day went yesterday that at one point, while pulling out of the Kroger parking lot, my boyfriend halted the car, shook his index finger at me, and decreed, "There are four words you are not going to say anymore today: Taco. Bell. Rectal. Bleeding."

Ha, ha! Um. Guess you had to be there.

"Taco Bell" was verboten because we'd both just eaten at one. We'll know we have a government in this country that cares deeply about the health and welfare of each citizen when it offers grants to researchers willing to study what makes people, otherwise sane, healthy people, people who know better, decide that eating at Taco Bell is ever a good idea.

Not that it was exactly my fault, although I suppose I did start the conversation that led to our eventual distress:

"After we return the movies, why don't we stop for lunch somewhere?"

[Groan.] "Noooo . . . ."

"What? Why not?"

"Because I just want to get these errands over with."

"Look, it's Sunday. Day of rest. We'll still have plenty of time to get to the store afterwards. Why can't we stop and have a little lunch?"

"Because we're just going to wind up paying $10 each at some shitty restaurant that you picked."

"I pick shitty restaurants? Which ones? Which ones are shitty?"

"Okay, look, I'm sorry. I shouldn't have said that."

And indeed he should not have. Don't think I didn't take advantage of his not banning the words "shitty restaurant" from my vocabulary later, after I had tried to compromise by letting him pick the restaurant and he had elected to make a run for the border.

[Insert standard "run for the bathroom" joke here.]

As for the rectal bleeding, that's not either of us suffering from it, praise the Lord. That would be my eldest and most beloved cat. Abscessed anal sac or colorectal cancer? Who knows? That will be what I spend this next week trying to find out.

Ah, veterinary bills. Blogging will be light.

UPDATE: Cat bottoms--catch the fever! Now there's a post that's both hilarious and, from my standpoint, freakishly coincidental. I'm telling you, cat bottoms are the new black. (Via Meryl Yourish, to whom I owe email. Ack.)

Posted by Ilyka at 06:21 PM | Comments (2)

July 23, 2004

Although Technically It Was More a Cremation

Seen everywhere (though I found it at the source of all goodness), it's my humble contribution to the Tombstone Generator meme:

I thought you said 72 VIRGINS

(Helper "I don't get it" link. WARNING: Linked article contains the phrase, "appetising vaginas," which surely did just do something to my appetite, all right.)

Posted by Ilyka at 10:09 PM | Comments (3)

July 20, 2004

A Purely Feminine Perspective on Spiderman 2

I think by now it's apparent I'm not the girliest girl out there, but nonetheless sometimes it's as though Anna Wintour barges into my head and I can't shut her up. Which means that for portions of the movie my stream of consciousness went like this:

Oh my God who are they kidding with her hair no way unh-uh that is not at all MJ hair--look at it all greasy and 1990s Seattle with the I-put-the-barrette-in-just-after-shooting-up-that's-why-it's-crooked look and when's the last time she had that mess cut, huh? When mine looks like that--wait, mine does look like that, just not that color. Which I guess is why the other day when I didn't bother to pin it up and I said "Man, I really need to get my hair cut," the boyfriend promptly replied, "Yeah, you really do," and I was too flabbergasted to get out even a lame line like "Thanks for your support, asshole." But that's me and I get paid like $0.075 per 65-character line of type and I firmly believe that no haircut beats a $12 haircut every time so until I can afford that girl at Toni & Guy who knows how to do my hair it's just too bad, so sad--but damn, what's Kirsten Dunst's excuse? Who allowed hair like that in this movie? And the color. Did they cheap out on a colorist for this flick? Did someone buy the wrong box of Clairol or what? Where's that unnatural MJ red like in the comics huh? Didn't they get it right for the last one? I think they did. I remember it as being seriously knock-you-on-your-ass red in the last one, but it's been awhile. I guess if I were like a serious fan I would have seen it 38 times by now . . . but come on, there is no excuse for this Nancy Drew strawberry blonde crap. Why do they call it strawberry blonde, anyway? This looks more like Velveeta to me.

And did she do something to her nose? Oh man, I think she's been getting the nose narrowed. Badly. You know that's what I never did the other day that I meant to, look her up on the IMDB and see if that was her in that awful movie I saw on the WB, that one that was like a sad ABC Afterschool Special where she's about the least-convincing pregnant teenager in the northern hemisphere. If that was her she's come a long way since then except wait, didn't she start out in Interview with the Vampire? I think that's right. So the teen pregnancy movie would have been a real step back but I guess it's hard for child actors--no, she definitely did something to the nose. Stupid girl, that was so stupid! So you have a wide nose, so deal with it. No one's looking at your nose anyway seeing as how they always manage to get you dripping wet and braless in these movies . . . aaaaannnd yup, what'd I say, did I call that or did I call that? How come the fusion thingie is pulling in taxicabs from blocks away but she's just standing there not five yards from it looking googly-eyed at Parker like they're in the middle of Central Park on a fine spring day or something? It's the hair I'll bet. Even the fusion thingie knows that her hair is just wrong and will have no part of it. It's probably sitting there going, no way, bring me the REAL MJ and I'll suck her into a flaming death, but this gal with the Cabbage Patch doll rhinoplasty who sprayed Cheez Whiz on her head?--Forget it, you can't fool me, I'm fusion, not a retard. Hey, that Tobey Maguire has really buffed up pretty nicely here. You know, filmmakers, as long as you have Spidey's mask off . . . .

Posted by Ilyka at 03:19 AM | Comments (17)

July 16, 2004

Basically, All Hell Broke Loose

So what happened the year YOU were born? In my case, it's mostly not pretty:

In 1969 (the year you were born)
Richard Nixon becomes president of the US

Senator Edward Kennedy escapes injury when the car he is driving veers off a narrow bridge on Chappaquiddick Island

US astronaut Neil Armstrong becomes the first person to set foot on the moon while commanding the Apollo 11 mission

Breathtaking pictures of Mars are transmitted to earth from NASA's Mariner 7 as it passes within 2,200 miles of the Red Planet

Woodstock music festival begins in upstate NY, featuring performances by Grateful Dead, Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin, Jefferson Airplane, and many more artists

250,000 Vietnam War protestors gather in Washington for the largest anti-war rally in US history

The first draft lottery since WWII is held in New York City

The Beatles' performance in public for the last time, on the roof of Apple Records

The Stonewall riots mark the start of the modern gay rights movement in the US

Marilyn Manson, Jennifer Aniston, Renée Zellweger, Edward Norton, Christian Slater, and Linus Torvalds are born

New York Mets win the World Series

New York Jets win Superbowl III

Montreal Canadiens win the Stanley Cup

Sesame Street premieres

Midnight Cowboy wins the Oscar for best picture

David Bowie's debut single, "Space Oddity", becomes a huge hit - in part to the US landing on the moon

Sharon Tate & the LaBiancas are found murdered by Charles Manson & "family"

What Happened the Year You Were Born?
More cool things for your blog at Blogthings

Riots, wars, Manson, Chappaquiddick . . . I don't think this is what Sinatra was talking about in "It Was a Very Good Year," although I suppose the moon landing qualifies as awesome.

Brought to my attention by the lovely and swingin' Emma of Miss Apropos.

Posted by Ilyka at 03:44 AM | Comments (6)

July 14, 2004


Yes, it's a lame filler post. You know, I used to throw out link collections when I had nothing to say or (more often) no time in which to say anything, until one day I paid attention to how long it took to fill in all the links for such a post, proofread it, and post it--and two freakin' hours had elapsed. I'm not sure if that's because I'm a slow, disorganized, awkward linker, or if they really do just take that long. I lean towards the former. I never bookmark things and wind up doing a clumsy traceroute on items I want to link: "Let's see, I think I was reading ASV at the time and was it this post?--No, this one--No, in the comments to that one--yes that's right, it was this fellow's blog and he links to . . . ."

So you see, I would make a lousy Instapundit . . . but that's okay. You don't really keep me around to read Wonkette to you, do you?

Posted by Ilyka at 09:50 PM | Comments (4)

July 12, 2004

Bipartisan Humor

No, really. Neither candidate escapes unscathed. Long load time (and I'm on DSL), but worth it--go grab some coffee or pester a coworker while you wait.

And Bill Clinton upstages both of them. I can't decide whether that's the saddest thing, or the funniest.

(Seen at both Simon's and Jim's, so I'm just jumping on the bandwagon here.)

Posted by Ilyka at 07:53 PM | Comments (2)

July 09, 2004

Something I Hope We Can All Agree On

This is great news:

A U.S. Marine who was reported missing in Iraq more than two weeks ago is alive and at the U.S. Embassy in Beirut, where American officials are meeting with him, authorities said Thursday.

Cpl. Wassef Ali Hassoun is safe and appears to be in good health, said a Pentagon official, speaking on condition of anonymity.

The joy his family must be feeling I cannot imagine. While it appears there are some unusual circumstances to this case, for the moment I'm just happy he's on his way home, head intact.

This is not such good news. Not surprising, perhaps:

The U.S. has ``credible'' evidence that al-Qaeda is planning a large-scale attack to try to ``disrupt our democratic process,'' Ridge said. The U.S. terror alert level, now at yellow indicating ``elevated'' risk, won't be raised, he said.

``We lack precise knowledge about time, place and method of attack,'' Ridge said. ``But along with the CIA, FBI and other agencies, we are actively working to gain that knowledge.''

Only tangentially related, maybe, but I'm going to get this off my mind while I'm thinking about it: If there's one thing I dislike, it's conservative pundits and would-be pundits using news like this to harp on the theme that a vote for Kerry is a vote for the terrorists. The rationale goes that because terrorists used the Madrid bombing to influence the outcome of the Spanish elections, they're now planning to use a "large-scale attack" in the U.S. to influence ours. And because it's a given that they probably wouldn't be doing this to influence more people to vote for Bush, it must mean the terrorists prefer Kerry. So a vote for Kerry . . . .

If you're going to say something that'll make you enemies, you might as well say it bluntly, so I will: That's fucking un-American, you pricks.

Yeah, un-American. Because in this country we don't tell people "vote such-and-such because that will keep out the terrorists" anymore than we say "be more like France because that will keep out the terrorists."

In a democratic republic, the people are sovereign and every person eligible to vote is trusted to vote in accordance with his or her beliefs. You can hate another person's beliefs, you can argue with them, you can promote your own as superior to theirs--all that's fair game. But don't tell people they're voting for terrorists if at the end of the day you have failed to reach them and they still want to vote Kerry.

We are not supposed to be a nation that lets thugs, despots, murderers and rogues tell us what to do. If you won't let terrorism keep you from going to D.C. or New York this fall, you shouldn't let it tell you who to vote for, either.

(End soapbox.)

I want to thank everybody who helped out on the centrist post today. You amaze me, all of you. I'd particularly like to thank the bloggers who linked it and pimp 'em if I may: CrabAppleLane, which recently celebrated its fourth (yes, fourth) year of weblogging goodness; Everyday Stranger, all done up in some beautiful new skins (my fave is definitely the callbox, but they're all terrifically elegant, just like the author); Feministe, where many of my favorite posts out of the past are being reposted for inclusion in the archives after a freak blogging accident; Snooze Button Dreams, whose proprietor is on limited posting duty while getting settled into his new home and whose proprietor's mama never had her name on a "D" paper; and Various Orthodoxies, where the author and wife are expecting a new arrival "any day now" (congratulations!)

I'll try to get something up tomorrow on the subject. Of course, then it will be Friday, and traffic really falls off over the weekend, and . . . .

Posted by Ilyka at 02:49 AM | Comments (6)

July 08, 2004

Define Centrist

[Sticky post alert: This stays up top until I get more responses. If you have a weblog of your own, you can help me out by linking it. Thanks!]

[Thanks, everybody. Overall quality of the responses was phenomenal.]

This is where I really wish I ever bothered to put a proper effort into maintaining this weblog, because I wish I had the traffic to do a large-scale survey. I don't, though, so I'll just ask you fine people:

Politically, what do you consider "moderate" or "centrist?" I mean, can you give me a sort of sample profile of a centrist? Maybe 1-3 lines describing where they'd likely be on various issues?

I know that totally sounds like I'm trying to assign the internet homework or something, but really, I'd like to know what lots of people think about this. I'd like to know even if you yourself are happily esconced on one of the far ends of the political spectrum--you can still tell me what positions you think qualify as centrist or moderate.

And oh please dear God do not anyone get up in my face and nitpick my framing of the question or my methodology or any of that, like some of y'all engineering types like to do. I'm just asking a damn question. If you don't like the question, don't answer it. Cool?

I have an enormous post I'd like to write about this whole deal, but I need input. So if you'd like to, be my input. (I know, it sounds so dirty put like that.)

Posted by Ilyka at 11:59 PM | Comments (27)

That %*&# Is Wearing My Dress!

Not dress--blog title. These two are wearing the same blog title . . . almost.

All right now, which one of you copied the other? 'Fess up.

Catfight! Catfight!

(Second link via the one-and-only CrabAppleLane.)

Posted by Ilyka at 01:52 PM | Comments (4)

Three Things

It's nice finding three great posts, the kind you want to mail off to dozens of people immediately, in the space of less than 10 minutes. It almost makes up for the other 90% of the time when blogs are crap, really.

(Ooh, did I say that out loud?)


  • Sure Lileks is good today, but Treacher on Lileks on Moore is (besides a nasty visual) even more gooder than that:

    Hey look, a rich old asshole is dodging a scrappy, inexperienced young filmmaker and indulging himself with his ill-gotten gains! Yay! Go team! Hey, waitaminnit...

    So I guess that was the "joke"? He's gone from Roger and Me to Me, I'm Now Roger? This is a source of pride, then? Or maybe it's like a meta thing? Or...? As is often the case with Moore, the only coherent message I could find in it is that he's driven by spite.

  • "Happy Deathday, Mr. Despot:" Simon summarizes North Korean progress since the death of their Supreme Eternal Leader. It's a short post.

  • Is it just me or are we Americans, from now until November, perpetually within a week of some dork at National Review writing a handwringing article bemoaning the slavish devotion to the Democratic Party by African Americans? Or is it the diabolical manipulation of African Americans by the Democratic Party? Either way, you can't say the subject doesn't concern them. It's a perpetual favorite because you can spin it either way: The "slavish devotion" version gives white folks an excuse to pat themselves on the back for being so much less gullible than those poor dumb black folks, and the "diabolical manipulation" version gives the Republican leadership an excuse for not trying harder to fix the problem.

    I'm not kidding--NR actually had an article in the print mag before the 2000 election suggesting that maybe the Republican party doesn't get more black votes because . . . because they don't ask for them. And the sad thing is, as stupid as that idea might sound, it's partly true. The Democrats have all the R & B/hip-hop/rap stations covered in ads here. They get out the vote and they play to win--but if Republicans really gave a shit they'd pay three times the going rate for those ads if that's what it took to bump off a DNC spot. So I think it's fair to wonder whether Republicans really do give a shit about picking up minority votes. . . but of course, if you wonder that out loud, you get called a racist.

    Anyway, have some "slavish devotion," NRers:

    Two rich white men gonna save us darkies! Vote Kerry/Edwards! Anyone but Bush!! Guess what... FUCK YOU! President George Bush Jr. punked out the vast majority of the Democratic Party in seeking the authorization for the Iraq War. He called out the Democratic Party and instead of making a stand, they presented their well-fed asses for a "liberal ass-shagging". Made no stand! And now the Kerry/Edwards want to talk about what Bush Jr. is doing wrong in the Iraq situation when they either voted for the authorization for war or did nothing to change their fellow Democrats minds. But they care for we black folks.
    S-Train, you gotta let T-Steel post more often. That was priceless.
    Posted by Ilyka at 11:44 AM | Comments (1)
  • Yellowcake, Yellowcake, Baker's Man

    Unfortunately, the guy I lifted this news from is correct in the spirit of his remarks--we'll be lucky to hear anything more about this:

    A UK government inquiry into the intelligence used to justify the war in Iraq is expected to conclude that Britain's spies were correct to say that Saddam Hussein's regime sought to buy uranium from Niger.
    And further in:
    But among Lord Butler's other areas of investigation was the issue of whether Iraq sought to buy uranium from Niger. People with knowledge of the report said Lord Butler has concluded that this claim was reasonable and consistent with the intelligence.

    President George W. Bush referred to the Niger claim in his state of the union address last year. But officials were forced into a climbdown when it was revealed that the only primary intelligence material the US possessed were documents later shown to be forgeries.

    The Bush administration has since distanced itself from all suggestions that Iraq sought to buy uranium. The UK government has remained adamant that negotiations over sales did take place and that the fake documents were not part of the intelligence material it had gathered to underpin its claim.

    Here's my bet for which portion of this news may--may--actually receive extensive coverage:

    The report will say the claim that Mr Hussein could deploy chemical weapons within 45 minutes, seized on by UK prime minister Tony Blair to bolster the case for war with Iraq, was inadequately supported by the available intelligence, people familiar with its contents say .
    So maybe Bush didn't lie, but Blair lied, and Bush and Blair are both part of the same neocon cabal controlled by Ariel Sharon, and besides, people still died. So even though "Bush Lied, People Died" isn't true in the sense of being, like, factually true or whatever, it's still true in the sense of being, you know, essentially true. Like it's true in the larger sense, right?

    And speaking of people who prefer their truth, ah, supersized, an aside that's bothered me for years actually: How many of you would cross a bridge built by a corps of engineers who only dealt with truth "in the larger sense?"

    "This bridge will support my Isuzu Rodeo all the way across it, and not dump me, my family, and our camping gear into the raging river beneath, right?"

    "Well, that's true in the larger sense . . . ."

    I don't know, it's just something I've never understood about Michael Moore fans, and yes, I realize he's got jack-all to do with the beginning of this post, but if you were as amped up on cold medicine as I am right now, you'd see that there actually kind of is a connection.

    In the larger sense.

    Posted by Ilyka at 07:46 AM | Comments (1)

    July 06, 2004

    Hack Hack Hack

    Bronchitis. Bronchitis in July. How messed up is that? Blogging will be light while I conduct a search for suitable lung donors. In the meantime, you should know that the Godzilla/Morgan Freeman battle for the presidency continues, and of course, all the blogs to the left are worth some time.

    Posted by Ilyka at 08:15 AM | Comments (6)

    July 03, 2004

    Palmetto Ghetto

    Three things that make Ilyka want to change residences real bad:

    (1) The sight of a %#$& flying cockroach on her beloved balcony the other night,

    (2) The "crime alert" notice posted on her door that reported the mugging of a visitor sometime "the week of June 28," and

    (3) The second "crime alert" notice posted on her door that reported the daylight break-ins and burglaries of two separate apartments, also sometime "the week of June 28."

    Meanwhile do not even ask what I pay these cretins per month. Oh, it's not West Coast/East Coast outrageous. But it's awfully steep for a place that won't spray for pests regularly and won't hire security personnel. Not that the security personnel issue matters much--when a place starts experiencing daytime break-ins, it's past the point of having a few rent-a-cops do any good.

    Welcome to the Palmetto Ghetto. Damn me.

    UPDATE 07/03/04: Meryl, in the comments below, reminded me of a fourth reason: The increasing prevalence of gunfire. I've had to call the police for nearby gunshots twice in the last month, the most recent occurrence being last Saturday night. This, on a street that houses a police station less than a quarter mile away. Doubleplusungood.

    Posted by Ilyka at 01:10 AM | Comments (4)