VLADRUSHKA by John Linton Roberson (c) 2022.
I Didn't Write That!
24 December 2009
  I'm Alan Partridge-Series 1 and 2, Plus Knowing Me Knowing You

No embedding code, but here's series 1, and here's series 2, complete I think.

And here's "Knowing Me Knowing You," his first series.


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23 December 2009
  When All Else Fails, Steal

No viable young politicians in the GOP? No problem! They'll just peel off some Democrats and then wipe them out & replace them in the primaries. And so far one Democrat has been stupid enough to fall for it. The idiot honestly thinks the party will back him next year.

So that New York race hasn't taught some politicians that, even if you're in the GOP, they cannot be trusted to have your back? Wow.


18 December 2009
  Why Does the GOP Hate the Troops?

Actually, that's probably a bit strong. "Hate" would imply some depth or fervency of feeling. If anything, from the start of our double wars to today, the GOP has shown plenty of willingness to throw troops into the field by the thousands, but cared not much about what happened to them after that. They skimped on equipment and body armor, they screwed the wounded out of benefits when they came home(in some cases even forcing them to pay for their own meals while in hospital), and more. They haven't ever shown any feeling for the troops other than a willingness to use them to score political points.

So it shouldn't be surprising that, with funding for the troops about to run out at midnight tonight, the Republicans should use that as a way of stalling against healthcare reform. They were going to let funding for the troops, in the time of war they themselves have declared and have used so often to hide behind, run out. Which was unsuccessful, and has even given the DNC fodder for the first of what I can only assume will be many ads pointing this out.

All but three Republicans voted against funding the troops. The Republicans' supposed strength is their commitment to national defense. They are so focused on bringing the government to a halt(their only idea and only talent)to wreck healthcare reform--what Lieberman and the Blue Dogs haven't wrecked already, that is--that they are willing to sacrifice the one thing on which some still trusted them more than Democrats(god knows why). I'm having a hard time figuring out what their party, even in their own eyes, still positively stands for. How could anyone not see their cynicism now? And, by the way, if the Democrats were able to block them from filibustering here, why can't they get the balls to do so on healthcare?

Who exactly is strategizing for them? Bizarro? It's not like the GOP, in my lifetime anyway, has ever been a very good thing. But I seem to recall at one point they, at least, acted like a national political party that had adults in charge with IQs greater than that of a lemming.

This is all leaving aside the fact that I don't think we should still be in either Afghanistan or Iraq anymore to begin with. But firstly, as we're still there, the troops should not be screwed, and secondly, from the GOP this is profoundly, revealingly, hypocritical. They're just in this for the game, and are not serious about governing. So one wonders why Obama defers to them still.

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  No, I Don't Think I Will

Here's a fellow who thinks Obama should be cut some slack by the left, but I think we're out of material to cut, aren't we? Slack or anything. I didn't vote for him to pity him. I did it so he would do the job. Instead he collects an empty Nobel given entirely for his presumed symbolic value, more what he has encouraged to be projected upon him than for anything he has done, which only underscores the disillusionment he is doing nothing to stop. He may not be vainglorious and empty. But I want to like the guy. Why can't I?

All he has successfully managed has been continuing, if softening somewhat, Bush policies. That disturbs me.

He takes the people who voted for him for granted, rightly assuming they will not vote Republican, but still assuming they will be fired to vote.

He allows the obvious ruination of his highly-touted healthcare plan, at the hands of people he panders to at every turn who despise him and will never cooperate with him, while reserving his criticism for his own side, whom he treats like recalcitrant children. This plan that, by the time Lieberman has been allowed to wreck enough of it, no liberal Democrat could vote for without revulsion, that no voter will like, but he'll be able to say he has a plan, however empty and jokelike it might be. Again, a valuing of symbol over substance. Politics as a game with a score, as though HARDBALL were real. No matter if it ends up actually making things worse, not better, only not because of government involvement in healthcare, as the Teabagger would have you believe, but because it would sell us all out to the insurance companies, up to whom Obama hasn't the steel to stand.

I feel insulted by him, disappointed in him, and depressed because, if this is not the man to do it, who's left?

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17 December 2009
  Obama: We Only Attack Our Own

Remind me please who won the last election. Because it doesn't seem that the Republicans ever left power, or the Democrats are being too nice to inform them they lost. Why? Look at the way Obama defers to these powerless, uncooperative assholes. They have done everything in their power to cripple, mutilate and destroy this healthcare bill, to the point that we now have a bill in the Senate that will amount to nothing more than the US public being required to buy health insurance, without any protection for us, or regulation on the insurance industry. What began supposedly as an effort to undercut the power of the insurance industry has ended up being the biggest Christmas present they could get: millions of people forced to buy their product, and nothing else. Is this why I voted for Obama? No, it fucking wasn't.

And Howard Dean, who, granted, can talk out his ass at times, objects to this. Does the White House criticize the GOP, or the slimy, evil, smug little Senator Lieberman, for their juvenile delaying attacks, their threats, their lies? No. But they do take time to question Dean's rationality.

I have to ask: what kind of Democrat is Obama, and when will the Democrats stop thinking there's anything to be gained by trying to work with the Republicans, who have no intention of giving any ground at all? Meanwhile Obama takes the people who elected him as a given.

He shouldn't. We might not vote for the GOP. But we can also stay the fuck home. Because Obama is proving it will make no difference. It's just that if the GOP were in power, there'd be no hope to be dashed.

Don't think that, just because insane people on the Right have these delusional beliefs about Obama and hate him(hell, I wish he were a socialist, that's a laugh), that there isn't a legitimate reason to be angry at Obama. There is: he is full of hopeful rhetoric, none of which he actually means. He's a tool of the insurance industry, whose funding the Democrats do not want to lose. So how could you ever have thought they'd ever stand up to them? Bite the hand that feeds them? HA.

But all the campaign money in the world may not help them if their voters feel betrayed. Which they do. As there's no chance Obama's going to pick off Republican voters, shouldn't he be paying attention to this? Does he think that we follow The Team no matter what like the GOP does?

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07 December 2009
  Walter Kirn, Making Me Vomit

Here's the most pillowy of puff pieces at the New York Times, shat out in one enthusiastic rush by one Walter Kirn. Read and learn: This is what it looks like to suck American corporate boosterist cock with the deepest of throats.

He even recommends you eat at McDonald's, and within the first three paragraphs at that. Look, I eat fast food. But there? Not since I was a child, and not even then when I had a choice.

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  The Chapter-by-Chapter Palin Review. Also, Plato. Well, Not Really.

By way of Andrew Sullivan, someone--and a Christianist Palin supporter at that--did a chapter-by-chapter review of Palin's book. And tears it to tiny pieces. It's long but worth reading.

And a point brought up: Palin includes a quote she claims is from Plato, but without a source, and a quote that sounds nothing like anything Plato might have said: "Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle." It's true that if you believe Google and random motivational quote sites, it's Plato, except no place that claims it's Plato shows a source, and I defy anyone to show me where it says in his writings.

But if you search more deeply in Google Books, you'll find no reference to Plato. What you find is that it appears to have been said by one T.H. Thompson. And it's also attributed to some others. In any case? Not. Fucking. Plato. The Thompson quote, incidentally, says "be kinder than necessary."

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  Rick Warren and Uganda

In recent years in African countries, has the main method of dealing with unwanted groups been giving them dirty looks? No? Then why is Rick Warren helping provide cover for what will almost certainly result in mass slaughter of gays in Uganda?

But I'll bet he'll whine and bemoan afterward he never saw that coming and who could have? You know, like Rwanda, and the Tsutsis, and the UN, and Clinton.

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04 December 2009
  Palin's Unscrupulous, and Clumsy, Cynicism

Not once during the 2008 election did the Obama campaign themselves make an issue of the speculations whether Trig Palin was Sarah Palin's kid or her daughter's. The blogosphere did, and was quite happy to, but not under any instructions from the campaign, nor did the MSM pursue it very much. Indeed, Obama has never made any issue of Palin--certainly personally--at all.

So tell me what this says about the kind of person Sarah Palin is.

Would you make [Obama's long form] birth certificate an issue if you ran?

I think the public, rightfully, is still making it an issue. I don’t have a problem with that. I don’t know if I would have to bother to make it an issue ’cause I think there are enough members of the electorate who still want answers.

Do you think it’s a fair question to be looking at?

I think it’s a fair question, just like I think past associations and past voting record — all of that is fair game. You know, I’ve got to tell you, too: I think our campaign, the McCain/Palin campaign didn’t do a good enough job in that area. We didn’t call out Obama and some of his associates on their records and what their beliefs were and perhaps what their future plans were. And I don’t think that that was fair to voters to not have done our jobs as candidates and as a campaign to bring to light a lot of the things that now we’re seeing made manifest in the administration.

I mean, truly, if your past is fair game and your kids are fair game, certainly Obama’s past should be. I mean, we want to treat men and women equally, right?

Hey, you know, that’s a great point, in that weird conspiracy-theory freaky thing that people talk about that Trig isn’t my real son. And a lot of people say, “Well you need to produce his birth certificate! You need to prove that he’s your kid!” Which we have done. But yeah, so maybe we could reverse that and use the same [unintelligible]-type thinking on them.

In other words, because it works, she is willing to use a tactic that she herself claimed was inherently out of bounds--when it was used on her. Against someone who never participated in said tactic. A tactic that relies on making people believe what Palin, as far as the matter of her baby is concerned, claims is all lies. But it works, so she doesn't care. So even if she knows the Obama birther crap is a lie, she'd be perfectly willing to use it.

Some of her former staff have referred to her as "sociopathic." I'd tend to agree. She's not so much a liar as a bullshitter; the truth is simply not something she cares about, or keeps track of. Truth and lies are tactics for her, that's all. It's fortunate she's also unaware others do keep track of these things.

What a ridiculous little monster she is.

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03 December 2009
  Say You Love Jesus and Huckabee Will Free You

If not for Huckabee's religious faith, Clemmons would never have been freed. If Clemmons had not claimed conversion, it wouldn't even have been considered. Because Huckabee was quite happy to free anyone who claimed they had found Jesus, even if they raped children. In fact, all you really had to do was a good job raking his leaves. Four policemen are dead now because Huckabee thinks of himself as a broker of Jesus' forgiveness. That's not even counting the children Clemmons molested, which was what got him arrested here to begin with.

And Clemmons is far from the only honoree of Huckabee's Christian forgiveness. But Huckabee's fixation on the next life has resulted in death, and pain, in this one, which is the only one we know for sure exists. If not for that, none of this might have happened. Four police now have family that will cry for them this Christmas, because Huckabee thought Jesus wanted him to free this man. Two children are permanently psychologically scarred. Jesus wanted that? Who is Huckabee to think he knows that in any event?

I don't know why the Washington state authorities let him out recently, but it would never have been an issue had Huckabee not been there first.

Why is embracing Jesus considered a get out of jail free card? Is it not the height of stupid, selfish irresponsibility to gamble the lives of innocents on your religious faith? Isn't this one reason religion and government should never come anywhere near one another?

I have no problem with anyone's personal faith. Whatever absurdity I believe religion is, it doesn't really matter--whatever makes people happy, whatever helps them get through this life. But the instant it has real, negative consequences for people other than the believer, it's stopped being cute or touching, and has crossed into a dangerous societal psychosis. Of all the reasons a person could be randomly killed in this life, a belief in something that cannot be proven or disproven is the vilest, most needless, and most childish. (Particularly when all the inmates knew this was a way to kiss up to the governor) Religion, to me, is only to be tolerated until it costs lives. Then it's time to grow the fuck up.

We have a restraining order against religion. It's called the Constitution. Perhaps we should use it. And I am overjoyed that this will keep Huckabee the Smiling Theocrat well away from the presidency.

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02 December 2009
  GOP Loses Attempt To End Minority Voter Protections

Naw, the GOP is not at all a racist party. Not in the least. They just find preventing minorities from voting is easier than trying to bring them into the party. Isn't it interesting too that they filed this suit against something protecting minorities from voter intimidation the day before election day last year. Maybe they should try something besides cheating to win, but I doubt they know how.

Incidentally,as the GOP is a minority now, this might not be such a good idea for them anyway...

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01 December 2009
  Obama's Terrible Speech That Convinces Not Even Him

My reaction to this speech: boilerplate that touches on every worn button but never goes very deep, or promises much. It's like a random sampling of many different speeches, like a long campaign ad. I expect him to say "Twirling, twirling toward freedom!" any time now. It's meaningless, this whole speech.

Except that we appear to be about to become more active in Pakistan, to which you should say, "Uh-oh."

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  The Afghanistan Escalation: It's On

Obama. You bastard. I did not vote for you because I had been happy with Bush's mistakes.
I did not vote for you so I could hear Karl Rove cheer.

And what for? Why should more American soldiers die? Bin Laden's not there--Bush let him escape long ago. We'll never wipe out the Taliban because they can always duck over the border into Pakistan and wait. The oil pipeline has been a bit of a boondoggle, but in any case probably doesn't need our protection, certainly not 30,000+ lives' worth. We have no real reason to be there. Even if we conquered it, we couldn't hold it without having to keep throwing masses of troops down Death's throat. And it drains not just lives but treasure, which is needed far more urgently to fix this country before it's strangled to death by the necessary debts that we're racking up just to forestall civil collapse and chaos, far beyond the wars we shouldn't be fighting. And this will, according to NBC last night, leave our standing troop strength at a bit more than 20,000, vastly unprepared for an emergency, and a lot else.

There isn't a single real reason for us to be there, so why multiply the mistake? Someone has told Obama this will be an easy way to appear strong on defense. Perhaps he's doing this as a concession to the conservatives, in hopes that now they'll stop being an obstacle to his domestic agenda(whatever the hell that is apart from health care). As usual, he curries the favor of people who will not repay it, and the support of people who will not vote for him. Because he assumes the people who voted for him last time, like myself, have no viable alternative, so he doesn't have to do anything to maintain said vote. Not that he's noticing people vote out of motivation, not duty. A sense of helplessness and entropy doesn't make for good voter turnout.

It's a mistake, and no longer someone else's. Before, we had evil people who had no idea what they were doing. Now we have nice ones doing the same. And when this is all done we'll have been in that country at least a decade. Even the Soviets knew to quit before that, and it still killed them. What will it do to us? Or are we already seeing it?

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  Not Unwise: Guns at Goldman

You ever wonder if Goldman Sachs knows how much we hate them for stealing our money? Well, here's confirmation of a sort: scared bankers are, this reporter at Bloomberg claims, buying guns.

“I just wrote my first reference for a gun permit,” said a friend, who told me of swearing to the good character of a Goldman Sachs Group Inc. banker who applied to the local police for a permit to buy a pistol. The banker had told this friend of mine that senior Goldman people have loaded up on firearms and are now equipped to defend themselves if there is a populist uprising against the bank.

I called Goldman Sachs spokesman Lucas van Praag to ask whether it’s true that Goldman partners feel they need handguns to protect themselves from the angry proletariat. He didn’t call me back. The New York Police Department has told me that “as a preliminary matter” it believes some of the bankers I inquired about do have pistol permits. The NYPD also said it will be a while before it can name names.

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"Eternity in the company of Beelzebub, and all of his hellish instruments of death, will be a picnic compared to five minutes with me & this pencil."
--E. Blackadder, 1789

JLRoberson Self-Portrait 2005.
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