December 28, 2006

Some of my best friends are penguins

Went to the children's bookstore, bought 'And Tango Makes Three' for my 6yo niece. Nice illustrations of penguins in Central Park Zoo. 'Touching and delightful variation on a major theme' - Maurice Sendak. 'Will delight young readers and open their minds' - John Lithgow. Sit down with said niece and my little daughters. The boy penguins, Roy and Silo, 'didn't spend much time with the girl penguins...instead Roy and Silo wound their necks around each other.."They must be in love"' Non-bigot zoo-keeper slips them an egg, which they incubate, hatch and parent. 'Tango was the very first penguin in the zoo to have two daddies.' So turns out the book is straight propaganda for homosexual adoption with the elegant twist that you can't know that until you read it. (By the way the happy gay penguin marriage was broken by a female called Scrappy tho that's not mentioned in the book).

So this is an impressively multilayered lie aimed at children. There's no evidence that the animals were homosexual. Male penguins incubate eggs. One of the penguins mated with a female. The animals were in an utterly artificial setting. The book is packaged to deceive.

By the way, can I have the beautiful word 'gay' back? It's a family name in my family, short for Grace. Lying to children is neither gay nor gracious.

December 25, 2006

The BBC does Mormon


The BBC correspondent in Bubble, DC, is one of the most self-important people in the world, so "Is America ripe for a Mormon president?" should be definitive as dogma for bien pensants. The signal to snide ratio is about 50/50, but the piece shows the confusion in attitudes of a liberal who 'gave 10 minutes' to encounter real, decent people who subscribe to a worldview anathematized by other secular cardinals . He deals with the conflict by piling on against his version of the other Christian nuts who dominate America.

December 13, 2006

Le weekend

Eiffel Tower.jpg

I took a couple of grown up daughters and a couple of friends to Paris for the weekend. The 2.5 hour train from city-centre to city-centre is great, tho it would have taken as long to wait for a cab at Gare du Nord as the rest of the journey. Incroyable! My experienced nr.3 daughter led us down the Metro at midnight. What surprised me was how friendly the Parisians were. Smiles in every bar and eaterie, English spoken, quite other than the Paris of old. I believe it's a conscious change and I congratulate them.

December 12, 2006

'War on Terror' = 'Bunch of Inept Scuffles'

John Hawkins springboards off a story 'Brits Afraid To Use The Phrase, "War On Terror"' to conclude that:

the Brits of old are fading away and being replaced with people who have more in common with Spain or Italy than they do with their cousins across the pond. That's part of the reason that I think our "special relationship" with the Brits probably won't last much longer than Tony Blair's time in office.

I'll springboard off that with my British reply :

1. John Hawkins' understanding of the UK is probably based on filtered news. When PC stuff happens it's mocked and exposed and there's a strong British cadre in the war party, eg Melanie Phillips, Christopher Hitchens and Mark Steyn (I don't care about his passport, he's British).
2. The BBC and much of the bureaucracy IS screwed. Things can change fast though with the right leadership. Blair did a fine job on Iraq, but that policy stood outside a coherent conservative philosophy. Contrast Thatcher.
3. It IS amazing to me how feeble are voters and parties in the US and the UK. All 3 big parties in the UK are essentially anti-Bush in the most jejune way.

At bottom it's down to leadership within a credible philosophy. Bush, whom I much admire as a man, isn't credible on immigration or spending. Blair, Brown, Cameron (Conservative leader, the most pathetic creep of a politician I've come across) aren't credible as conservatives or patriots. But remember that when forceful leadership took us into Iraq, both electorates responded patriotically. The enthusiasm evaporated because the the post invasion policies ignored the regional context and were weak. Eg Syria and Iran needed terrorizing and al-Sadr needed killing. The Iraq conflict was successfully portrayed as a bunch of inept scuffles preceding an exit without honour. Bush and Blair needed to make it a war to the death with Islamofascism, fought like we mean it. WWII could never have been prosecuted as just a fight for Norwegian ports or Polish freedom.

The risible Insiders' Surrender Group report may provoke a rethink whether the 'War on Terror' is a war against an enemy who wants to kill/enslave us or a local operation in Iraq.

Melanie Phillips :

The ISG report, and his reaction to it, has now ruptured .. consensus management. The big question now is whether Bush has the capacity to follow through, to rise above his warring advisers and follow his moral instincts — to emerge from being a weak chief executive to become a world leader and statesman. In the dying fall of his presidency, does he have the wherewithal to go for broke? On this lonely and frail figure the fate of the free world now depends.

December 08, 2006

Deep pockets and long arms

God, I'm sick of politics. The only things that make sense are chess and sport. If anyone out there cares, here's a long interview with Jose Mourinho, the super-competent, super-confident manager of Chelsea Football Club. which is owned by the super-rich, super-shrewd Roman Abramovich. If you skim over the inside-soccer material (tho fascinating to me), there are insights of self knowledge and team management with zero therapy-speak. Mourinho is affectionately mocked as "The Special One". He'd been an average player who managed an unfashionable club, Porto, to victory in the Champions' League - aka the European Cup, the most prestigious title in club football - and is on track to make Chelski the top club in the world. Abramovich bought the fashionable but underperforming London club in 2003 and hired Mourinho in 2004. Chelsea then won their first English league title in 50 years, then did it again the next year. Abramovich has spent about a billion dollars on the club. It is hard to dream up a more fabulous life than his, a Jewish orphan who is now the richest Russian. He's 40.

The Utility of Useless

Do you remember the judgement of Anna Diggs Taylor against the NSA surveillance program with arguments so thin and embarrassing that it made the Administration's case for it? The Baker report does that for the Victory Strategy in Iraq, Iran and Syria. It holds up the unreality of ancien regime 'realism' for the world to mock.

God may not play dice, but he has a sense of humour to have timed this report to coincide with the anniversary of Pearl Harbor.

November 25, 2006

Are Germans Cowards ?


Many instances from the World Wars and the brave performances over the decades in the World Cup suggest not, but the question arises from an incoherent, rambling article in Der Spiegel : Are the Germans Stationed in Afghanistan Cowards ? 2 extracts :
'The Germans at NATO headquarters in Kabul now face open hostility: They're mocked as cowards and cop-outs. Some Europeans "obviously resist the idea that you have an army in order to fight. And I have very little patience for that," says the US ambassador to Afghanistan, Ronald Neumann. Neumann wants the Germans to join in the fighting -- and the dying, if necessary -- in southern Afghanistan.'
'And the Germans in the north? It may be a little cowardly to stay up there and radiate a feeling of security, dig a few waterholes, calm down a few of the warlords and cultivate trees.

But it may also just be smart.'

Note the Germanic name of the US ambassador.

My in-laws are German-Americans and the interactions between them and their close kin in Germany are fun to watch. The German-Germans, delightful people for the most part, seem pessimistic and cynical about society. One, a fine man who fought on the Eastern Front and has good memories of Americans and American chocolate at the end of the War and who lost his land to the communists, is pretty anti-American. My theory is that Germany is psychologically crippled by unexpiated guilt from history. My theory is that this extends to generations who had no part in the original evil. My theory is that psychological health is restored when national honour is restored by virtuous acts. But Germany has not acted virtuously. At great risk the Allies saved modern Germany from Nazism and Communism. Germans owe their freedom twice over to the courage of the Anglosphere. In return much of Germany sneers at the USA in general and Bush in particular. Neither an individual nor a collective psyche can be in good shape like that.

When we lived in the Hague and drove into Germany, the light became gloomier as we crossed over. People were just unhappier, more private and wore darker clothes. My wife felt the same.

So my advice to Germany is 'Regain your self-respect. Stand by those who stood by you (that's not France by the way).'

See also - "The true hypocrite is the one who ceases to perceive his deception, the one who lies with sincerity."

November 19, 2006

Perfidious Albion

The USS John Bolton took on most of the rest of the world on Friday.

Bolton was furious over the adoption by the General Assembly of a resolution which said the assembly regretted the deaths of 19 civilians in an attack by the Israeli military in the town of Beit Hanoun last week.

"Many of the sponsors of that resolution are notorious abusers of human rights themselves, and were seeking to deflect criticism of their own policies," he said.

"....the United Nations must confront a more significant question, that of its relevance and utility in confronting the challenges of the 21st century. We believe that the United Nations is ill served when its members seek to transform the organization into a forum that is a little more than a self-serving and a polemical attack against Israel or the United States," he said.

The United States, and Australia joined Israel in voting against the motion, together with four small Pacific island nations. All countries in Europe, including Britain, voted to support the resolution.

I'll be proud to help pay Bolton's salary should the Democrats defeat his nomination. The President should continue to nominate 1st class people like Bolton, Roberts, Alito and let liberal Senators defile themselves in full view.

November 12, 2006

The Anglosphere

The USA, the UK, Australia and Canada as a committed military and cultural alliance would have immense reach. Superbly endowed with human capital, physical resources and a martial and self-correcting culture, that alliance would attract Israel, India, Japan, Eastern Europe. There would be huge gains for the security of all. Oh, and include brave Denmark as a founding member.

US foreign policy should remorselessly promote a formal Anglosphere alliance . That means winning hearts and minds in countries with an anti-American MSM nearly equal to your own. That means preferential treatment both ways to the countries who've fought together through several wars. Screu the EU.

I agree there's a problem with indigenous Islamists. That needs fixing under any scenario; reverse dhimmitude, perhaps.

This is a long-term project. Articulate it now. Start soon. Meanwhile many of us suave British males have been breeding with your most beautiful womenfolk and re-colonising the USA. There's Mick Jagger, Paul McCartney, Guy Ritchie, me, und,und,und..

Tattoo this on Baker's forehead

"For the rest of the world, the Iraq war isn't about Iraq; it's about America, and American will" - Steyn.

If America walks from Iraq, it will be challenged everywhere and will have to fight multiple wars or surrender its self-determination or both. Millions will die in those wars. Which future Tony Blair will risk his political life to help America in an unpopular war if Iraq is surrendered America is beaten now ?

The battle for influence between Bush snr "realists", like Baker, and Bush jnr "warriors", like Cheney, may define the history of the 21st century.

The "realists" are in the ascendant because the issue has not been correctly defined. It's not about Iraq. It's about America.

November 08, 2006

A timely shock

Liberal defeatists will run the House and likely the Senate.
A principled and visionary Defense Secretary resigns.
Islamists and the MSM smell victory over Bush.
A reliably conservative nominee to the Supreme Court will not get through the Senate.
Iraq policy will be Bakerized.
Iran will nuke up.

Hmmm. Maybe it's better to face this shitstorm now than later. Let America taste and smell what this means for the next 2 years so that the more important elections in 2008 will take place with reality close up and sweaty in voters' faces.

October 31, 2006

Scary, n'est-ce pas ?

He was nearly Commander-In-Chief :

aan.thumb.jpg {F549137C-F6F6-4BEA-92D9-9670071A94C5}_scarymovie3.jpg

October 11, 2006

It's Like Chess


The World Chess Championship
reaches a crucial game tomorrow. Champion Vladimir Kramnik is presently level with Veselin Topalov.A 12th game draw will send the match to tie-break. Kramnik is white.

Kramnik drinks a lot of water and likes to stretch his long legs. At first each player had private restrooms. Topalov was getting beaten and his manager accused Kramnik of too many pit-stops implying that he was cheating in the bog - eg receiving messages, using a computer - as the bogs were the only unsurveyed environment.

FIDE, the ruling body, then changed the arrangement to a common bog/restroom/signals centre. VK protested, didn't turn up for game 5, forfeited, appealed, lost the appeal, theatened to sue, blah blah.

Since then Topalov's manager has drawn attention to a high correlation between VK's moves and Fritz the Computer's preferences. Baldly stated this has no significance other than gamesmanship.

Pretty much everyone thinks Kramnik is in the right.

The history of World Chess Championships is Pythonesque to a fault and it's splendid that the traditional mix of genius and puerility is being carried on by a new generation. Naturally the Prime Minister of Bulgaria is involved, but where is Borat of Kazakhstan ? Unless....
Борат Сагдиев ................. Vladimir Kramnik

More details on and

Speaking of comedy, if there are any chess-playing readers in Moab, Utah who'd like a few skittles games next week, I'll be there with my manager and his manager.

Expletive Deleted

While you are throwing out your toothpaste from hand baggage for your next flight to and from the UK, you may care to reflect on this :

Anila Baig, a columnist on The Sun newspaper, reported that at Leeds-Bradford airport no member of security had asked her to remove her niqab to check her identity against her passport picture.

October 07, 2006

A Flatter Tax

There's less buzz about flat tax these days, so let me make a modest proposal:

What is called "flat tax" is really "less progressive tax." Ignoring the fiddly bits like thresholds, if I earn 100k and you earn 50k, I pay twice as much tax as you, for no good reason except that you have a vote worth as much as mine (more if your vote is thought more biddable).

"Flat tax" should mean we pay the same tax. That would be a glorious revolution.

The only enforcement need be a public list of those who've paid the tax, a strong sanction if you think about it.

For a lively essay on what I call "flat slope tax" see The Economist.

September 21, 2006


Chavez comes to NYC, calls Bush 'the Devil'.
Rep.Rangel (D) says 'You do not come into my country, my congressional district, and you do not condemn my president. If there is any criticism of President Bush, it should be restricted to Americans..'
Rep. Pelosi (D) says 'Hugo Chavez abused the privilege that he had, speaking at the United Nations'.

Sanctimonious piffle! Chavez owes no allegiance to Bush or the US. Al Gore, Bill Clinton, Jimmy Carter ...these guys may have an obligation to refrain from belittling their President when speaking abroad. Some hope. You know the thing I like about Bush, despite Miers, despite immigration. The man has grace.

Postcard from Hungary

In Budapest a couple of nights ago I was playing chess with a friend from Houston, sitting outside a tex-mex, when a few thousand rioters sauntered by our table. Hungarian rioting is rather genteel :


Almost nothing happened. Budapest was calm. We were by the tv station and parliament, the epicentre of "Budapest burns".
The next day it was calm. It was a peaceful democratic demo with a teeny bit of action staged for photo-ops.
It brought home to me how much of the "News" is phony and amplified.

We also played chess in outdoor hot baths and moseyed around the banks of the Danube and a Totalitarian Sculpture Theme Park:
sculpture 2.jpg

The Totalitarian theme has potential for an OzymandiasWorld, with smashed, colossal, mossed over. stone limbs and heads; theme experiences to include show-trials and queueing for bogroll and soap.

September 13, 2006

Harry Reid Fisks Winston Churchill

Oh, I wish I'd written this.


I'm asked by a friend who trades inflation for a bank what I think. So....

"Sell in September and go away.
I dunno. UK housing is just unaffordable. We'll have to emigrate to Poland. That's not a joke, it makes a lot of sense to base an office in E.Europe, eg the Baltic States. In Poland you can get cheap Ukrainian plumbers.

US housing is more efficient than in space restricted, bureaucratic UK, so I expect the price signals to work earlier (as they are) with consequently smoother markets and less knock-on to consumer confidence in general. The UK is hard to predict because just as English is the global 'lingua franca', so London has become world city and new capital immigration (eg from India and China) can propel UK asset prices further than history would suggest.

Commodities have peaked, absent much greater tension in the middle east or somewhere unexpected.

Inflation in general has stayed low despite the commodity boom, despite mid-east war, despite China and India. Reason is China and India (abundant cheap, skilled human assets) plus tech advance plus floating currencies to permit tensions in purchasing power parity and expectations to disssipate rapidly rather than by currency earthquakes.

So :

Commodities down
US housing down 25% ish, but no hard landing for economy.
UK housing is a big fat wobbling bubble which will probably both inflate and deflate bigtime with an eventual big fat splatty pop.
E. Europe pretty good.
France will improve for sure.
Germany still stuck. Talent gets out, but they're not really hungry.
China - no idea.
India will boom. Tremendous talent, finally, finally starting to liberalise.
Inflation overall not a bigtime problem.
Sterling steady - really it's a better reserve currency than Euro.
Dollar strong. Say it again - strong dollar. More hawkish fed, purchasing power parity, lower oil prices. President Romney will be more of a deficit hawk.

Politics in the UK is rancid. Cameron's an utter scumbag and Labour/the vast public sector/the BBC will try to capture Gordon Brown away from markets and the US. That might lead to 1970's type national gangrene for a while".


On live British TV I watch soccer highlights and that's it. Maybe I became saturated with The Simpsons when Haloween seemed to come round every month. I should take another look. After all Homer is, well, Homeric
I watch a few US shows on DVD, often with a glass of whisky at 2 am seeing that 'alcohol is the cause of and solution to all of life's problems' - H.Simpson. Maybe it's a golden age for American comedy. By Series 2 the US version of The Office became richer and funnier than the original with delicious supporting roles and it's just poignant in places. I re-watched some of The Larry Sanders Show. It's like comedy heaven to me, up there with Fawlty Towers. But Arrested Development may be up there too. The LSS and AD have Jeffrey Tambor in common. Also in common is the brevity of these shows - all around 24 minutes or less. 'Brevity is the soul of wit' and the lack of it undoes many shows and movies. Desperate Housewives and The Sopranos are just too long, too padded. Curb Your Enthusiasm is very decent, but too linear on Larry David. The other characters are stifled, tho they have real potential. Also it's 5 minutes too long. Am I the only person who doesn't get "24"? My highly intelligent male American in-laws love it. I re-sample for 10 minutes and give up; the characters and plotting seem so lame. And where did "Duckman" go ?

I must plug CSPAN Book TV, an amazing free resource on the web. The Afterwords and In Depth Archives are rich,rich,rich..VD Hanson, Tammy Bruce, Newt Gingrich, Bernard Lewis, Charles Murray, C Hitchens and on and on. Long, uninterrrupted conversations with intelligent, articulate, alert minds. There are plenty of liberals too plus writers of the standing of Updike and Wolfe. An unexpected gem is the interview with Gunnery Sgt. Jack Coughlin on his book "Shooter" about sniping in Iraq.

September 12, 2006

Fake But True

Some conservatives attack Bill Clinton and gang for attacking an ABC docudrama "The Path to 9/11"

I prefer an absolutist line on docudramas - "real people, real words."
Once you start down the "fake but true" road you go on thru Rathergate to the Ministry of Truth. That liberals lie is just another reason not to do it.

August 23, 2006

Airport madness

On Sunday we may travel to the northern tip of Denmark, one of the most tranquil spots I know because:
1. The beaches are superb and fairly empty.
2. The land is surrounded by sea on nearly all sides, so the light bounces up and down to create a special palette which was exploited by the "Skagen school" of painters.
Fiskere paa Skagen Strand. 1891.jpg

The uncluttered landscape is mirrored by Danish design. We're partial to the glassware.
3. I like the Danes. They earned honour in WW2, saving almost all their Jews, and they have been pro-US against the EU pattern. I have done a lot of shipping business with Danes and they are great at performing their side of the letter and spirit of contracts.
4. They were traduced by most of the MSM over the Mohammed cartoons, so this is a good year to visit.

The bad part is Stansted Airport. This weekend a strike of check-in staff and baggage-handlers is scheduled - evil in a normal year. It's a Bank Holiday weekend and the kind of person who'd piss on a family vacation like that deserves nightmares to the crack of doom. Oh the humanity! Think of the children! Let these cockroaches get another job if they can't do this one without back-stabbing the rest of us. Backstabbing cockroaches, pah! This year the strike comes on top of the security farce, so 'treasonous' is too mild. No wonder one becomes a sulphurous old fart with age - it's the rational response to the calibrated sadism all around. Hell is other people, heaven is:

KirstenHat2.jpg Bottles2.jpg

So, folks, for a great family vacation, rent a house in Jutland and fly by private jet.

As an air travel oriented coda, here's a transplanted comment to Mick Stockinger's post on "Mutiny in the War on Terror" provoked by the Movable Type damnspamfilter (more calibrated sadism; what's the bad word ? 'race' ? 'flipflop' ?) -

"I applaud the passenger mutiny. Nobody cares what race they are - it's risk assessment. Nearly a quarter of young British male Muslims tell pollsters that 7/7 was justified.
Mick, it may be hard to get just how 'sensitive' the UK establishment has been to Muslims in ways which are beyond satire. It's been tried and failed. Repeat slowly after me "tried..and..failed."

The dhimmi mood music all around just increases their sense of victimhood. But they are not the victims. We are, and it's time that that culture paid a price and take ownership of the problem. If they can not or will not, then the West must do what it needs to do for self-preservation.

Assume the following:
1. You and your family are on a plane waiting to take off.
2. It's hot. You're wearing shorts and flip-flops.
3. There is no passenger profiling.
4. 24 Muslims, mostly young males, have just been arrested for plotting to blow up passenger planes.
5. There are 2 young male Muslims on the plane. They appear too heavily dressed. They glance frequently at their watches. They speak to each other in Arabic or Urdu rather than English.

Ok, Mick, I want to know, honestly, would you leave your children on that plane for the sake of the wider principles you wrote about ? Not me, mush, and I don't feel bad about it. I didn't create the problem. Muslims did; that's Muslims as a group and Islam as a culture. It's way past time for them to fix the problem or have it fixed around them. "

August 16, 2006

Leaving Auschwitz

I took these shots a few weeks ago. "ARBEIT MACHT FREI" ("work makes free") is the sign above the entrance to Auschwitz.

As a message from Islam then to Islam now I was interested to learn that : Adolf Eichmann`s deputy Dieter Wisliceny testified during his war crimes trial in 1946 that ... "The [Palestinian Grand] Mufti [of Jerusalem] was one of the initiators of the systematic extermination of European Jewry and had been a collaborator and adviser of Eichmann and Himmler in the execution of this plan... He was one of Eichmann’s best friends and had constantly incited him to accelerate the extermination measures. I heard him say, accompanied by Eichmann, he had visited incognito the gas chambers of Auschwitz."

August 12, 2006

Don't feed the crocodiles

The morning after the woolly Franco-US UN resolution for a ceasefire in Lebanon there are reasons not to be cheerful for those who want:
1. A muscular Anglosphere
2. A timely war to eliminate Islamo-fascism. I mean war, not putzing about; war on Iran; war on disloyal immigrant groups; prompt, ferocious and simultaneous war to install acceptable regimes in Syria, Lebanon and Iran. That will simplify Iraq and Afghanistan. That is the humane and risk-averse policy, the best chance to avert a bloodier war later, which we might lose if our resilience and ferocity is the lesser.

It's not cheerful that Bush is signalling weakness in foreign policy, that the BBC's dhimmitude fades into treachery as the tension grows, that 'Dave' Cameron is leader of the party of Thatcher... that sort of thing.

But...over 0-3 years the scenery could shift to this :

US - Giuliani or Romney
UK - Brown or Reid
Israel - Netanyahu
Australia - Howard
Canada - Harper
Germany - Merkel
France - Sarkozy

Of these, only Howard has proven himself as a fighter for the West, but it's a potentially formidable wartime alliance. I might add Japan and India.

That's a best case and when the US is credibly threatened by an Islamic WMD, appeasement will seem more attractive than now. They know it, we know it. That threat is their stick, the carrot is their permission for us to enjoy life while demography does its work for the Caliphate.

Let me try to articulate the opposite view:
"Like it or not Muslims are provoked by pro-Israeli policy and Iraq. Sharia law can operate alongside western law within Europe and everyone will be happy. Iran is entitled to the same nuclear technology as the West. Ahmadinejad may be even shorter than Napoleon, Hitler and Stalin, but he's charming and rational, ok, a little crazy about the Zionists and he hangs homosexuals and he hangs teenage girls for adultery, but that's a cultural thing. We have our equivalent fundamentalists like Bush ."

I hope that's a fair summary of let's call it 'the BBC view'. It has the virtue that it is self-refuting, it just needs to be stated absent the weasel words. The Bugs Bunny Democrats have no coherent view outside self-gratification and appeasement; they are the 'Feed The Crocodile 'Party.

I don't want to feed the crocodile, especially a sadistic crocodile, but I can't live with it prowling around my house. I can't live with little crocodiles inside my house chirruping away to the big one outside.

Appeasement central
: hat-tip to Powerline.

August 11, 2006

Correlate that

1. Time - "a knowledgeable American official says U.S. intelligence provided London authorities with intercepts of the group's communications."

2. FT - "The detectives allowed the alleged plot to continue for as long as they dared. They followed the young Muslim men’s movements in London and other parts of the UK, listened into their meetings and monitored their spending."

3. WSJ - "The plot was foiled because a large number of people were under surveillance concerning their spending, travel and communications. Which leads us to wonder if Scotland Yard would have succeeded if the ACLU or the New York Times had first learned the details of such surveillance programs."


August 10, 2006

Correlate this

I'm in London.
My family is in the US, due to fly to the UK at the weekend.
This morning there is the highest level threat alert on UK/US flights - 'critical'.
The UK police say they've thwarted a specific attempt at 'mass murder' .
21 British Asian Muslims have been arrested overnight.
Neither the police nor the BBC say the word ' Muslim'.
Nearly a quarter of young British Asian Muslims polled say 7/7 was justified.
There's a long-term, consistent profile of terrorists against planes.
Everyone knows what that profile is.
Almost all security assets at UK and US airports will be applied to the bags of passengers like my family, not to logical human targets.
Security assets are finite.
Security intelligence is finite.

Please correlate.

Afterthought: Thank God the New York Times didn't know these arrested men were under surveillance.

August 09, 2006

Today's posts are in fact posts made over the past few weeks on Mick Stockinger's

All together,love,love

Paul and Heather McCartney are impressive people, but their divorce is doing to them what divorces do: heahtermillsSPL_230x350.jpg PMcartneyST_350x350.jpg

"Sir Paul ordered all the locks on his properties to be changed after the phone at his Peasmarsh estate in Sussex was bugged earlier this year — and the tape strangely ended up in Heather’s hands. She challenged him over a conversation he had had with his daughter Stella, in which Stella had attacked her stepmother."

May they act with grace. That would be a blessing to them and their daughter. Divorcees know the risks of a downward spiral once lawyers and advisers are involved.

Heather Mills was once a prostitute, which she seems to have lied about to Paul. That's an honest and useful profession and it's tough on her that she's being humiliated. The cruellest commentary comes from women maybe because fucking for money makes plain to men and themselves that swapping sex for stuff is much of the underlying deal, whereas love, which is real too, is optional rather than primal, but it binds a man to a particular woman and to their children against his own merely reproductive interests.

[A propos -

A woman can have about 1 child per year for 30 years.
A man can have about 1,000 per year for 60 years.


There is no reciprocity.
Men love women.
Women love children.
Children love hamsters.]

I wouldn't choose the expensive wedding they chose - in contrast to Paul and Linda 38 years ago when he was still more famous; flashy wedding, trashy divorce. Maybe the flashy wedding compensates for an emptiness in the spiritual wedding. The flash says 'Look at me, look at us, we look married so we are married, here's stuff to prove it' when all that's needed at a wedding is true minds. The stuff is impediment.

Special relationship

My New Yorker wife pretends to write a book, "101 uses for an English twat" [pronounced "twot" rather than "twat"] and I scold her to talk proper - eg "bottle of water" for "boddle of wader." It's nothing to do with accent or idiom - I love hers - but blur pronunciation and you blur speech then thought and I don't want our children lumbered with inexpressive speech.

Anyhoot, I'm glad that "wanker" is getting tossed into American usage. "Merchant banker" is a nice variant from rhyming slang. The great linguistic prize would be a Constitutional Amendment to eliminate "restroom" and "bathroom" as euphemisms. "Bog" is the mot juste.

Universal wolf, universal prey

Animal testing is an issue in the UK. Most of the New Labour apparatus is clear that the medical benefits to man trump the emotionalism of the anti-vivisectionists and that the illegal, sometimes terroristic attacks on scientists must be beaten. When I've seen the issue raised on conservative sites (diabolical britspeak profanity warning), the likes of PETA are scorned to the hilt...tree-hugging liberals....skinny twerps. The BBC just staged a debate. The protestors were inarticulate dolts. The scientists were cool and logical within their definitions.
But still it stinks. To refute a common debating point: would I accept animal testing to save myself? Yes. So I'm a hypocrite and the anti-vivisection argument fails? Yes, I'm a hypocrite, no the argument doesn't fail. I would accept testing on any animal, but especially on the human animal, to save myself. That makes me selfish (and sane), but the anti-vivisection argument stands since Law should protect the rest of you against me as I wish Law to protect other animals against us.

The fallacy in all this is the ego-syntonic superstition that human animals are more important than other animals. Maybe, maybe not, but a scientist should be sceptical of human criteria to decide the question. Mankind vivisects because it can and because it can sanitise the the disgusting, cowardly deed by keeping it out of sight. I don't know about animal rights, but I do sense the virtue in human duties, one of which is the duty to abstain from tormenting other animals. If the cost of that is worse medicine (though I doubt it), then so be it for the sake of decency.

Things change. Orthodoxies change. This perversion of science, which includes abortion and vivisection, is not science, but a guilty use of power..

"Then everything includes itself in power,
Power into will, will into appetite;
And appetite (an universal wolf,
So doubly seconded with will and power)
Must make perforce an universal prey,
And last, eat up himself."

Embryonic stem cell research is nicely pinned by "and last, eat up himself."

Strong/Weak continued

Here Mick argued that Bill Kristol was disingenuous and puerile in arguing that we aren't travelling the path in the war on terror. On the substance I commented that there is clear and present danger and we should hit Iran now because :
1. What about a suitcase bomb?
2. What about a ship bomb?

Mick replied :
1. Only the US and Russia have suitcase bomb knowhow.
2. The threat from tankers is understood and easily defeated.
3. Iran would be deterred as the weapon would be traced and Iran would cease to exist.

This is too important and too wrong to leave to a thread which has disappeared over the horizon.

1. You and I just don't know who has a suitcase bomb, but suppose it is only the US and Russia, would you gamble New York City - ok, Salt Lake City - on the hope that Russia itself or a Russian AQ Khan won't sell the knowhow or a bomb to Iran? It's plausible that something south of billion dollars buys Iran a nifty nuke from a Russian (or Chinese or Ukrainian or American or Israeli) source. It's not "Who has it?", it's "Who wants it and can pay for it?" and it can be any other WMD as well.

2. You don't explain how a ship bomb is easily defeated if you don't know it's there. Armageddon 101 - place bomb in container, load container on vessel, sail into a Western harbour, make cellphone call to the 12th Imam, pop.

3. Mutually assured destruction may be no deterrent to a messianic regime. Anyway Iran just needs to demonstrate its capability to get the leverage.

Iran must be dealt with. Sooner will be less bloody than later. Diplomacy is a displacement activity to avoid starting down a tough road.

UPDATE - the Iranians may have a "dirty" bomb already
- ingredients from Britain.

Traitor's Droop

Yesterday I walked by the nearly complete NYT Tower on 8th Avenue opposite the Port Authority Bus Station in New York City. 'Obviously it's in NYC,' you say, but the NYT prints in New Jersey and is a useful idiot
200607015NYTFallujah.jpg pinch-sulzberger.jpg

for those who'd happily construct a big black hole out of Gotham granite.

I like the architect, Renzo Piano I lived close to the Menil Gallery in Houston (lousy collection, lovely building) and live close to the site of London Bridge Tower (will be the tallest building in Europe and the UK, just iconic ).

The NYT Tower looks good to me, better than the NYT stock-price. Shiny new HQs are infallible sell-signals, flagging desire for pomp before profit. Pride comes before a fool.

nttower.jpg nyt.png

The NYT should operate from cheap, dingy premises in Queens or Harlem, not from a princeling's folly that screams elite! elite! elite!. ( I once worked for a triple-A firm in cheap, cramped offices just outside the City of London. Our clients took this as a sign that we were so seriously strong that we didn't need show to boost our own morale or impress the geese ).

Although the NYT stock-price has Traitor's Droop and I'd love to see it implode ( oh Lord, implode that traitor's droop! ), the stock must have recovery prospects in the right hands. That means oust the Sulzbergers or, more likely, the Sulzbergers oust Pinch and instate proper voting rights, letting the stock come in play. A suitable confederacy of dunces to take over the NYT would be a consortium of all the Als - Gore, Franken, Quaeda and the Saudi squillionaire, Waleed. There'd be no need to change its editorial line or news management.

See also Rove runs the Times and Keller as cat's paw for an effeminate/feminist/femmefatalist freakshow of Pinch and Judy and Mo came too .

First Post on

Assembly of Trumpeters for Reveille

Mick invited me to post, so a small profile:
British, UK/US/Australian children, baby-boomer, London-based with spousal visits to NJ, oil-industry and commodity-trading background, url

I play soccer, so my first post is on ZZ Shinytop, Zinedine Zidane. His crime is stupidity. That's it really.

The appropriate Samurai code is:

"A warrior should not say something fainthearted headbutt a shirt-tugging, nipple-twisting, sister-sliming Italian even casually. He should set his mind to this beforehand. Even in trifling matters the depths of one's heart can be seen."

Like, oh my god

A Shakespeare First Folio was auctioned for $5m today.

Sotheby's English literature specialist Peter Selley said: "The First Folio preserves 18 of his plays, including some of the most major, which otherwise would have been lost for all time...."

There is no evidence that Shakespeare took any steps during his lifetime to publish these unQuartoed plays.

"To-morrow, and to-morrow, and to-morrow,
Creeps in this petty pace from day to day,
To the last syllable of recorded time;
And all our yesterdays have lighted fools
The way to dusty death. Out, out, brief candle!
Life's but a walking shadow; a poor player,
That struts and frets his hour upon the stage,
And then is heard no more: it is a tale
Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury,
Signifying nothing."



June 14, 2006

Milk chocolate
It's like being involved with a serial philanderer. You find out that he had sex with your sister -- in your bed -- and you live and let live, so as to not rock the boat. Then you find out about the secret love child he had with his secretary, and you take it and hope that your kids will like their new half-sibling. Then he gambles away your life's savings and puts you in debt, and you let him slide with a promise to never do it again.

Than comes Valentine's Day... and he gives you a box of milk chocolate when he knows damn well that you love dark chocolate and can't stand milk chocolate. How dare he! All hell breaks loose: "You don't have to yell." "I will yell!" And you finally kick him and his milk chocolates out of the house.

May 31, 2006

Grappa goes well with pot noodles

This is Chinese for "I fed my face and my self-respect to a dog and now I feel better"

Eddie Hor shot by Finn Behnken en route to Norechab in Namibia

London at night

Learn Latin..or else

May 30, 2006

Greenwich Yacht Club, storm ahoy

A consortium of Als

From June the London Times will be published in New York (it's a wrench to insert 'London'). My theory is that the UK and the US will eventually approach a political merger to match the cultural merger. Anyway, the New York Times' palatial new hq is an omen that this confederacy of dunces may seek re-structuring by a consortium of Als - Gore, Franken , Quaeda and the Saudi squillionaire, Waleed. There'd be no need to change its editorial line or news management.

March 17, 2006

A moderate judge

Antonin Scalia

Noting that the Senate confirmed his high court nomination by a 98-0 vote, Scalia said, "You could not get a judge with my views confirmed to the Court of Appeals today."

He said code words such as "mainstream" and "moderate" are now used to describe liberal judicial nominees.

"What is a moderate interpretation of (the Constitution)? Halfway between what it says and what you want it to say?".