'I felt comfortable telling him I hated him'
A nice tribute
to Dennis Johnson from a L.A. Lakers fan. ...
'It’s called secondary virginity'
So by seemingly whoring himself for support from Christian conservatives, Mitt is actually obtaining a status called 'secondary virginity.'
... Go right to the end of the story
to see for yourself. You can't make this stuff up. ... One has to concede it may have been a misinterpreted joke by Norquist, though I doubt it knowing Norquist's sense of humor. ...
'The American narrative'
A provocative piece by Michael Vlahos
about Iraq and our entire approach toward terrorism -- not to mention America's role in the world. Never mind that it's in the American Conservative
, a very odd duck indeed. Worth a read. Via AS
. ... Re the 'odd duck' description: American Conservative, backed by Pat Buchanan, is in that strange sphere where far Right meets far Left. Case in point: Brendan O’Neill
, an editor at Spiked
, whose predecessor was LM, aka Living Marxism
. O'Neill currently has an Israel-bashing piece
in AC that just as easily could be in a far left-wing magazine. ... My head is spinning. Memo to self: Need to read a Mike Hammer novel.
Quickie book recommendation: Jeff Sypeck's 'Becoming Charlemagne: Europe, Baghdad and the Empires of A.D. 800.'
Informative and simple tale of Karl, King of the Franks and the formation of the Holy Roman Empire. One of those pleasant fill-in-the-blanks history books. The writing style is hard to describe -- fast and breezy, in a very positive sense, that fits well with the telling of a tale.P.S.
-- Looking forward to getting my hands on the 'Mao'
book recommended by John
the other day. ...
'Sure to backfire'
Best piece yet
about how and how not to deal with Iran. Hint: Don't repeat Iraq. ...
BMG Watch, Day 158 PDP **
After undertaking the dangerous mission 156 day ago
to monitor Blue Mass Group for post-primary Kos-like dementia, Hub Blog has come to a conclusion based on this post
: BMG has lost it and officially morphed into Big Moonbat Group, merely a mirror partisan image of Hub Politics
. ... FYI: To give some 'context' to the 'context,' the subject of Taxachusetts not being Taxachusetts is indeed old
, as one can also see here
on the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center's very own web page
that tracks media stories on such issues and, of course, about its very modest self. Now, if you go to Google and type in the words 'Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center and corporate taxes,' you'll also find a lot of other links and discussions
about corporate taxes dating back years. I particularly liked this
, by Left Center Left's Chris, who had the intellectual integrity to critically analyze MBPC and others' numbers and put them into a context that didn't fit neatly into partisan arguments of the moment. But that's obviously not BMG's goal anymore. ... Partisan fight! Yeeeeehah!
BTW: Deval did
disclose before the election that he intended to close three 'corporate tax loopholes' to the tune of $85 million. But no discussion of seven valued at $400 million. And, strange, no discussion about corporations being undertaxed compared to other states. Of course all of this brings up the issue of when Deval knew about the deficit and his mutterings about not raising taxes. But we won't go down that road. Too much context for one day. ...
** Post Dem PrimaryUpdate
-- Speaking of Left Center Left, a new political party is born.
-- An alert reader notes Chris is no longer writing LCL (I knew that) and someone else has taken the domain name (I didn't know that -- I thought the site was just hanging there in cyber space, awaiting Chris's return). ... FYI: Chris wrote the posts above before he parted for Philadelphia. ...
Not much else to say about Dennis Johnson's death after reading Kevin McHale's response
: 'What a sad, sad day.' ... I liked the last lines in this article
. Dennis died knowing he accomplished greatness. ... Adam
has a good roundup of local bloggers' reactions. ....
on where presidential candidates have stood and now stand on Iraq. Two things caught my attention: 1.) The chart's description of Mitt's position: 'Supportive, but critical of handling of the war.' I repeat my prior assertion
: Mitt will use that very mild criticism in a big way, if he gets beyond the GOP primaries and runs in a general election. 2.) Barack's 2002 explanation for not supporting the original war authorization vote:
I know that invasion of Iraq without a clear rationale and without strong international support will only fan the flames of the Middle East and encourage the worst rather than best impulses in the Arab world and strengthen the recruitment arm of al Qaeda. I am not opposed to all wars, I am opposed to dumb wars.
I disagree that there wasn't a clear rationale at the time. There was: WMD. The problem is the WMD rationale turned out to be based on a falsehood: There were no WMD. Everything else he said is fundamentally true. This was a dumb war -- obvious to some before the invasion and obvious to others in retrospect, like yours truly. Anyone who still says he would do things exactly the same way has a screw loose. Too many dumb decisions were made. ... Not wild about Barack's stand on withdrawing troops. But at least he's being consistent. ... Can't believe it: Agree with Charles Krauthammer.
Democrats who truly believe the war is lost and advocate immediate withdrawal are acting out of 'reasonable and honorable and patriotic' impulses. But attaching half-ass (and ass-protecting) micromanaging funding strings is wrong.
'I thought of our Governor ...'
From Reader No. 1:
I thought of our Governor as I read this Economist column this week about different perceptions in Europe about the relationship between policy and personal behavior. Obviously, Patrick supporters can and surely will use picking up the tab for office decor and car as a 'Northern' example of making sacrifices for the greater good -- and in the service of using said sacrifice as a lever for the rest of us to help close the budget deficit through higher taxes, tolls, etc... Obviously (again) this argument for making tough financial choices would be stronger if not for the $72k support staff.
But at least those tough choices were made in good taste - which has not gone out of style in these parts!
'Military discipline, drugs, hypnosis and mild electric shocks'
Can this story
be true? It's about 'Internet addiction' treatment in China. It sounds more like a Soviet psychiatric hospital. It's ... just read it. Jaw-dropping incredible. ...
'Constant internal violence'
Bartle Breese Bull
(yes, quite a name) notes all the successes the Brits have had in a more peaceful southern Iraq -- and how they still don't add up to a certain vice president's definition of success. ... The column brings up, in my mind, the old positive-vs.-negative debate about media coverage of the war. There are indeed positive developments in Iraq. The problem is that that there's not enough of them to overcome the negatives in Iraq. The British seem to have figured this out. That's not to say an American withdrawal at this point is wise, as Bull notes (it's his last name, I assume). ... Here's a blast-from-the-past word: 'multilateralism.'
Cadillac-gate, Part III
. But was it really an apology
? It was not
. And we know it. This was a knock-it-out-of-the-park moment for him. But his response yesterday merely reinforced the notion, as Reader No. 1 pointed out
the other day, that there's something more at work here than just image and perceptions. Repeat: Individually, the various stories don't push my outrage buttons. Collectively, well, they add up. ... Charley
is blaming the media. Riiight. From now on, BMG shall ask a pre-post question on every issue it plans to write about: Is there something else more important in life than what we're about to write about? ... John
says Deval should have gotten out front on this earlier. Non-sarcastic right. Adam
notes Deval is complicated. Double non-sarcastic right. ... Adrian 'not' link above via Adam. ...
P.S. -- I like 'Caddygate' better. But I'm stuck with 'Cadillac-gate' for the time being. ...
It's just a rehash
of Mitt's abortion views. But I liked the 'baroque circumlocutions' description. ...
Cadillac-gate, Part II
I do believe spending $10,000 on damask drapes
in the middle of a fiscal crisis establishes a pattern -- even if Deval now foots part of the bill
for the Caddy. ... The only thing left to ponder is whether Deval's damask drapes outdo Ed King's lobster dinners.
... Well, at least he's admitted mistakes via his reimbursements.
Two articles, one in Wapo
and the other in NYT
, on al-Qaeda's recruitment and expansion efforts in North Africa. From a Moroccan expert:
Al-Qaeda has the same strategy as the United States: It wants to win in Iraq so it can transform the whole region. They are fixated on Iraq.
The quote both proves and disproves the rationale for staying in Iraq. Such is the pickle we're now in -- stay, and Iraq remains a 'bring 'em on' magnet for terrorists, or leave, and Iraq becomes a victory for al-Qaeda. ...
'Joint Committee on the Conduct of the War '
After reading a number of local blog posts here
on the 'support the troops' issue, I stumbled across this Robert Novak column
and his reference to the Joint Committee on the Conduct of the War during the Civil War. Didn't know what it was. So I looked it up.
Many differences between then and now. But this part jumped out at me:
The (Congressional) committee showed little inclination to learn or to expand its political base for the sake of the cause. They were ideologically moral men who advocated just and ethical causes, but they were also narrow-minded partisans, blinded by their own sense of importance and self-righteousness. They spent countless hours on investigations and committee hearings. They published thousands of pages of testimony and reports.
It sounds so familiar. So snicker away, pro-war conservatives. But wait. The preceding sentence read:
Lincoln, however, realized that the crisis called for open-mindedness, a willingness to learn and to experiment, and finally the need to broaden his political base — both for his own reelection as well as the good of the nation.
Except for the reelection part, there's no comparision between Lincoln and Bush when it comes to being open-minded, willing to learn and experiment, and desiring to broaden a political base. That's today's problem. You can't manage a war by committee. But we don't have strong and wise leadership at the top either. We're in a pickle. We'll probably need an odd miracle, perhaps something like this
, to change the dynamics in Iraq. So I support, for the time being, the 'surge,' if you can call it that, in the hope we get a lucky break, perhaps brought about partly by modest successes of a good general whose policies should have been adopted three years ago. The president has mumbled something about showing signs of improvement by this fall. Fine. Hold him to it. If it doesn't work, it's pull-out time. He will not be able to blame anyone, something I'm sure Karl Rove would love to do if Dems give him the chance. Dems shouldn't. ...
'Wait until they learn Mitt's position on gun control,' Part II
on gun-control continues to evolve
). ... I wonder what epiphany caused his NRA membership. ... After taking control of the Big Dig, I was at home watching Gunsmoke when all of a sudden it hit me
'Let's do the math ...,' Part II
Papa Tom is front-page news
in both papers
. ... Grand prize to the first media outlet that runs the What This Says About Society story. Second-place prize for How To Tell The Children story. Tie-breaker points to outlet that first quotes a Harvard psychologist as an expert source. ... Favorite sociological comment on the affair: "'If he doesn't accept responsibility, that would be even more unbelievable,' Mike Grudzinski said, finishing his beer." ... Oddest observation so far: "'It'll be a beautiful child,' Gomes said. 'It has genetics in its favor.'" ... Adam's poll
is still open. ...
'Let's do the math ...'
is about to become a daddy
? And it's not with Gisele. ... Well, congratulations, Tom, if it's true. ... From a perfectly selfish standpoint, I hope his being a father doesn't distract from the '07 season. ...Update
is running a poll already.
'No, he’s not'
I love Bill Russell
, who responds thusly to a question about whether Greg Oden is another Bill Russell: "No, he's not." ... And he isn't. But I still want the Celts to get Oden. ... What I love about Russell is his confidence, backed up by reality. On his making it on a Wheaties box nearly four decades after his retirement: "It’s quite flattering. ... It’s the breakfast of champions, and when I’m in my egotistical mode - which I am most of the time - I think of myself as the ultimate American champion. And this sort of seconds the motion." ... Can't you just hear his infectious laugh when he said that? ... Larry Bird was another who earned the right to brag. I still recall the time, after he retired, someone asking him whether the Michael Jordon-led 1990s Bulls were the best NBA team ever. No, said Larry, noting that Michael's career overlapped with his and Magic Johnson's and Michael never managed to win a championship while the two were playing at their peak. Enough said. ... Speaking of the Bulls: Give it up, Scottie
. ... Speaking of champions: I second Dan's motion that Keith Foulke's retirement was a 'class act.'
Keith sounds sad -- and sounded sad for the last few years. I hope he appreciates he was a critical part of something very special: the 2004 Sox. See you at future Sox reunions, Keith. ...
I gotta admit: I can't get worked up over Cadillac-gate.
. Individually, the stories don't push my outrage buttons. But then I read this
. Collectively, the stories start to create an impression of an 'imperial governorship'
that I find somewhat disturbing -- and it goes back farther than just Deval. Mitt's entourage -- with ear-piece wearing Staties and American-flag-on-lapel aides, all doing their best West Wing imitations -- never ceased to annoy me. Jane, Paul, Bill and Duke also had aspects of the trappings. But Mitt and Deval seem to have pulled them all together in a way not seen since ... Ed King. That's probably unfair. In fact, it is unfair. Deval hasn't yet charged lobster dinners to taxpayers. But he's got to be more careful on the image front. ... FYI: I've seen the Deval tax-ideas
stories etc. But I still think we should wait to see his budget. That will tell all. ...
Political tidbits: Could two lawmakers really be this
stupid? I'm afraid so. ... Great description
of Michigan, where Mitt chose to launch his presidential run: "The place of warm childhood memories and no adult fingerprints." ...Update
has more on Deval's growing image-gate. ...Update II
-- Reader No. 1 thinks it's more than about image:
Question for you and Jon Keller: at what point does an 'image' problem become a reality problem? The steady drip-drip of Deval's copter, caddy, $72k admin, not to forget a week-long inauguration, are all of a piece with his response to the Ben LaGuer history and previous efforts to get him to talk about tax and fiscal policy. Hub Blog's response
All of these happenings lead one to the conclusion that Governor Patrick thinks (knows?) he's better than you and doesn't have to acknowledge (much less accept) criticism or comment. That's not a problem of image.
Question: the more imaginative of our recent governors (Weld & Romney) checked out on the job ahead of schedule... even Cellucci, steeped in legislative habit, left early. Does anyone think a braino like Deval is going to stick around for the tedium of fixing our fiscal crisis? Remember, his first chopper trip was used for a trip to an art museum and a government swearing-in ceremony (The Hack-Progressive Alliance lives!).
-- To the first question, I need more drips before a certain reality can be confirmed. To the second question, I'm sure, at this early stage, Deval's already discovered the pure misery of dealing with our dear lawmakers. But I haven't seen anything yet to think he's checking out early. (In retrospect, it's obvious Mitt began his check-out at the time he presented his first budget -- recall the presidential ABC News-like 'message of the day' background at his press conference -- so, again, I say, wait till Deval presents his first budget. It should tell us a lot.)
'A classic French technocratic pattern'
Maurice Papon, the Vichy France bureaucrat who all but signed the death warrants of hundreds of people during WWII, is dead
. He made his choices in life. He could have joined Charles de Gaulle in London. He chose a government job in German-occupied France instead. He had choices. ...
'Kerry Healey must be wishing ...'
Looking at all the tax ideas coming out of the Patrick administration these days, Dan
wonders what Kerry was running for last fall. I think it was sheriff or maybe district attorney. It certainly wasn't governor. ...
'We came back, we tried'
And now they're leaving. They can't take it anymore. Poor New Orleans.
No. 19 - not
The Celts broke their losing streak
last night. Thank goodness. I had a whole bunch of bad descent metaphors and lines at the ready if the streak continued. Davy Jones' Locker. Journey to the center of the earth. Etc. The local blogosphere has been spared. ... Saw Greg Oden play last night during the Ohio-Penn State game. Impressive. But I wasn't awed. Still want him in a Celts uniform, though. ...
'Danger of accidental war'
The word of the week in Washington seems to be 'skeptical'
-- as in not everyone believes President Bush's assertion
that someone in Iran is arming Iraqi insurgents. Maybe others are 'skeptical' about those claims. I'm not. I have little doubt Iran is meddling in Iraq. I've assumed it for a while now. It's not a surprise. But I am 'skeptical' about the timing of these claims. It points to possible/probable military action against Iran -- and I'm 'skeptical' about this administration's ability to think through this crisis and all its potential challenges. ... Some wonk is quoted in the second link that there's a 'danger of accidental war.' But the real danger is that maybe some want the appearance of an 'accidental war' in order to justify what they consider an inevitable war. They're treating us like children again. Truth has to be served up in vague dollops because, well, we can't handle the truth, so the guys with all the impressive experience in foreign policy, intelligence, defense, oil, Saudi sheiks etc. will try to push us forward with a little demonization here and a little demonization there and ... you get the picture. We all saw it in the run-up to the Iraq war. We all saw, later, how tragically overrated and incompetent these guys are. ...
'The Enemy at Home'
After reading Dinesh D'Souza's new book 'The Enemy at Home,'
Stanley Kurtz announces
, 'Well, my moment of culture-war overload has finally arrived.' ... My moment of culture-war overload occurred during the Clinton impeachment proceedings. But I know what Stan means. ... The sad part about D'Souza's book -- besides its thesis that 'the cultural left in this country is responsible for causing 9/11' -- has been largely unspoken: How it reflects the decline of conservative journalism and intellectual thought in general. I've been down this road before. The best way to summarize it is to simply present Byron York's classic Atlantic Monthy article
on the crash of the American Spectator (full story here
hether it's R. Emmett Tyrrell Jr. or
Dinesh D'Souza, when intellectuals or intellectual wannabes mix their philosophical views with partisan politics, they become hacks. ... BTW: I haven't read D'Souza's book -- nor do I intend to. Why? Because I already know what he'll say: Right, good; Left, bad. ...
Moose are moving south
into Massachusetts. All the more reason to reintroduce wolves
into the Northeast to counter them. ... We want wolves! ... What do we want?
Wolves! When do we want them?
counters the 'absurdly circular' logic of the Inspector General who criticized his pre-war intelligence work with, well, absurdly circular logic regarding CIA analysts:
They excluded reports conflicting with their favored theory: that the secular Iraqi Baathist regime would not cooperate with al-Qaeda jihadists. (We now face a strategic alliance of jihadists and former Baathists in Iraq.)
You see, they weren't cooperating but now they are cooperating due to ... what? What action brought about their current cooperation, Doug? ... Poor Dougie. You get the distinct impression he knows how history will portray him and he's pathetically left toggling between IG and Senate reports, nitpicking details and once again thinking his clever iron-clad logic will fool us again. ...
'Truck Day - A Re-enactment'
The most riveting YouTube
in the history of YouTube posts. ... Via Soxaholix.
... IMHO: They should have faked a dramatic truck chase and crash on Boylston. But that's just the Martin Scorsese in me speaking. ...Update
-- The link didn't work at first. Fixed it. I think. Keep watching beyond the credits. ... If it still doesn't work, just go to Soxaholix's post today, first caption box. ...
Banging the new war drums?
I'm with Carpundit.
... Some questions on the Iran weapons discovery
: If this is so important, why didn't we send more troops to seal the borders years ago? Why has it taken so long to discover this? Why the big announcement now? Do you trust this administration to have thought through all the ramifications of a possible attack on Iran? What worst-case scenarios have they suppressed? What best-case scenarios have they pumped up beyond reason? Finally: Have they made real plans or Katrina plans? ... This could all be bluff. I hope it is. I have no trust in this adminitration's ability to make wise decisions. ...
We should be seeing
Capt. Nemo and giant squids at any moment now. ...
'Too bad he played mostly pre-VCR'
Two books on Pete Maravich are reviewed.
... Can't wait for tonight's Celts 6 p.m. game. They've become so mesmerizingly bad that you want to see how low they can sink, sort of like a submarine exceeding its depth limits. ... BunkoSquad responds
to my post: He believes the players are indeed playing hard. His 'uninspired' remark applies to the whole Celts operation. My mistake -- and total agreement on the sorry state of affairs on Causeway Street. ...
'They need some size,' Part III
Definitely well into record territory: 17 straight losses for the Celtics.
... Not sure, though, if three Hub Blog posts in five days on the Celts is a record. I'll have to check my archives. ... The strange part of this sports nightmare is that I've grown to respect many of the young players. They've kept a good attitude and played their hearts out. That might partially explain why Doc Rivers, who appears oddly more at ease these days, wants to return
. Of course, the prospect of landing Greg Oden or Kevin Durant
would make any coach want to come back. ... If the Celts get a choice between Oden and Durant, they better go for Oden. But it would be so typical of modern Celtics luck if they got: A.) neither or B.) picked the lesser of the two. ...Update
: 'We're No. 1' ...Via Adam
-- I got ahead of myself. I initially wrote they've lost 18 straight. The 18th comes tomorrow.Update III
-- Bunkosquad: 'Rock bottom.'
... And he doesn't agree they're playing their hearts out. ...
'New commander, new plan'
Lt. Gen. David Petraeus takes command
in Iraq today. I'm expecting some successes from him, though victory is an entirely different matter. I'm more inclined to John Burns' evolving belief
that no sound strategy and additional troops at the start of the occupation could have prevented today's disintegration in Iraq. But we'll never know for sure. The incomptence of the Bush administration has ensured that. ...
Reading Russian history usually depresses me. Somehow events and people always get sucked into that morose black hole known as Siberia. I generally avoid Russian history as a result. But for some reason, I picked up Anne Applebaum's Pulitzer Prize-winning 'Gulag'
and I'm glad I did, though I'm definitely going to have to read a light Robert Parker novel
afterward just to clear my head. What's great about Applebaum's book is that, through interviews and recently-released Soviet documents, she humanizes the almost unimaginably vast horror of the Gulag system under Stalin. In particular, I've often wondered what happened to the millions of kulaks condemned to exile by the Soviets. It's all here -- the round ups, the herding of peasants onto trains and boats, the dumping of survivors in remote Siberia, the slave work in forests and in mines. It is, indeed, depressing. But it's important history. So I highly recommend it with the warning: It's Russian history. ... BTW: Anne writes a fine column
for the Washington post. A sample
from late 2006:
On the day James Baker's Iraq report was published, I gritted my teeth and waited for the well-earned, long-awaited, Franco-German "Old Europe" gloat to begin. I didn't wait long.
She lets them gloat -- then gently lets them have it for not offering up alternatives. ...
'They need some size,' Part II
Please, please, please may the Celtics get Greg Oden
. ... Two posts in two days on the Celts. Not a record. But still feels odd. ...
'Liberals and conservatives talk past one another'
A nice op-ed
that tries to reconcile collective action and personal responsibility when it comes to helping African Americans:
The point is that the current political vocabulary, which treats structural aid and work ethic as either-or propositions, is wrongheaded. Both are important. Both make real the promises of democracy.
Percy Julian (see 'Forgotten Genius' post below) once reached the same 'either-or' point in his life -- and concluded, like Stepanie Robinson and Cornell West, that both were indeed important for the advancement of African Americans. ...
'They need some size'
Dave Cowens on the Celts
: “They need some size. That’s what they need. They need some size. It’s a pretty small team.” ... Some of us have been saying this for years. It's so obvious. ... This upcoming draft is make-or-break time for Danny Ainge. No blaming the situation on the bounce of a ping-pong ball. He has to come up big in this draft -- in more ways than one. ...
Nova's special last night on Percy Julian
was excellent. It started off annoyingly slow (effectively repeating 'he was great, he was great, he was great' etc.) and then took off when it showed why he was great. About two-thirds through the show I was left wondering, 'What else did this guy discover?' ...
Reader No. 1 statistically confirms my hunch that any team that struggled to put away Rex Grossman et gang had to have been pretty weak itself:
Scroll to the last paragraph at Football Outsider, before 'STATS EXPLAINED'. Actually, you probably want to scroll down here first and read STATS EXPLAINED to make sense of the article.
For a more focused treatment of the same subject, check out this and ponder the conclusion that the 1985 Super Bowl-losing Pats were better than our beloved 2001 winners... and ponder the magnitude of that wonderful upset...
Chicago should hold a football equivalent of American Idol, calling it Chicago QB or whatever. Really, they can surely find a better quarterback than Rex Grossman, who was unforgettably bad last night. How did the Bears get to the Superbowl with him? ... Sort of happy for Peyton. But he didn't play at true MVP level. Tony Dungy deserved the award, but they don't give MVP trophies to coaches. ...
'Or will he shank it?'
First, I hope it's a close game tonight.
Second, it may well be a close game
. Third, I'm rooting for Peyton to win it in a close game. He deserves it. ...
'You’re Marty Meehan ...'
My best guess is that Marty probably won't
enjoy the Sunday papers this morning
'So our fair city's reputation ...'
Susan and Mike
discuss a certain event last week before getting into the Sox, Matsuzaka and American vegetables:
So our fair city's reputation as a bastion of intelligence has taken quite a hit.
Yes, but our reputation as a cathartic, the sky is falling, waiting for the other shoe to drop, panic-stricken people remains quite firmly intact.
Now it's farce, Part II
The great mooninite drama is slowly fizzling to an end. Martha Coakley is already sweeping up
the aisles. It was classic Boston. ... The last act we already know: the shake down
of the guilty. But will it be $500,000 or $800,000? Do you think we can squeeze a new fire engine and a dozen or so flat-screen TVs out of Turner? Free city-wide Turner Classic Movies for a month? Turner is going to regret mentioning 'restitution' to our
pols. ... ... Wait! Maybe there's one last secret mooninite attack
being planned. ... Some last great observations and comments here
(i.e., triumph of capitalism, counter-culture corporatists, Rupert Murdoch's own laughing all the way to the bank etc. Via AS
-- A proud Boston reader writes in with a suggested new motto for the city: "Laugh at it or leave it!" ...Update II
-- Another friend wrote in to ask 'what's there to laugh at?' The answer: The aftermath. The police response doesn't bother me (see posts below). It's everything afterward I find classic Boston: The mayor flapping his arms and babbling about banning movies; smug counter-culture corporatist dudes and their devoted artsy defenders who sound like Squeaky Froms; mooninite T shirts and video games; Big Dig 'crisis managers' riding to the rescue of Turner Broadcasting; pompous deliberations about 'generational' divides; hipster wannabes 'embarrassed' about Boston; media members running around with their heads cut off; the never-ending arguing etc. It's all an acquired taste. ...Update III
-- Love City Councilor Michael Flaherty's line
about the dudes: "A lot of people in Boston were hoping that a tough judge was going to wipe the smirks off their faces." ... That's what it comes down to: Those smirks
. Face it, those smirks
are ultimately what sent this story into farcical orbit. ... I'm going to miss this story. ...
Now it's farce
We've entered the Twilight Farce Zone: Mayor Menino is babbling about banning movies in Boston
over the Aqua Teen affair. He's lost his mind. He doesn't know it, but he's now building a 'legacy' for the Comedy Central ages. ... For the mayor's sake, someone at City Hill should slip the Aqua guys each a wad of cash and one-way bus ticket out of town. But they won't take it. They're having too much fun and indeed laughing all the way to the bank.
... Not that they're innocent. They could face serious cover-up
charges, along with their marketing guru bosses. ... Dan
caught something important yesterday: There were separate pipe-bomb scares on Wednesday, proving it was one hell of a day for police, who I still don't think overreacted per se. The silly overreaction mostly occurred afterward. ... A couple people emailed about my Lennon-McCartney reference below. Behold: a transcript
of the Beatles' first U.S. press conference in 1964. It's funny stuff even today -- and the Beatles were true artists. Can't say the same about our air-head Aqua dudes, though. And, yes, the Beatles discussed hair and joked about money. ... I know, I know, I know. The hair references yesterday were related to yet another cartoon. ...
'Tragedy or farce?' Part II
is cooling off while I'm getting a little angrier. The 'starving artists'
are pulling out a 40-year-old Lennon-McCartney schtick of being flippant
about, like, wow, everything, dude. Next it will be framed as a Police State vs. Oppressed Artists drama. The mere sight of them makes it tempting to overreact by shoving them on a plane headed for Guantanamo. But ... but that's exactly what they'd want and so we shouldn't do it. Let's determine their motives first. If it was indeed misguided marketing, so be it. Let 'em go with a fine and free bar of soap. No need to make them martyrs in their own minds. ...
'Tragedy or farce?'
Maybe it's both. Adam has terrific coverage
of the bomb/bombed-marketing scare yesterday. There's part of me tempted to say 'lighten up, Boston.' But I can't shake the notion that some of the gizmos were intentionally placed in obscure places meant only to scare and prove the alleged cleverness of the marketers. ... I don't blame police for their reactions. But throwing the homeland-security book at someone could turn the affair into truly tragic legal farce if they're not careful.
P.S. -- More from Carpundit.