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July 31, 2006

A Sweet Family

I had to take a couple of days off to put down an attempted mutiny by my brain. But I see that during my absence, this recent column by John "I Give Nepotism A Bad Name" Podhoretz has been widely celebrated:

What if the tactical mistake we made in Iraq was that we didn't kill enough Sunnis in the early going to intimidate them and make them so afraid of us they would go along with anything? Wasn't the survival of Sunni men between the ages of 15 and 35 the reason there was an insurgency and the basic cause of the sectarian violence now?

Among those finding this noteworthy were Tristero, Matthew Yglesias, Mark Kleinman, and Gregory Djerejian. They all seem to think genocide is a bad thing.

I'm not really in a position to criticize here, given the massive bloodshed that was required to quell my own mental insurgency. But I do think it's worth recalling something related.

John Podhoretz is the son of Midge Decter. Back in May, 2004, Decter frankly explained the real reason we attacked Iraq:

"We're not in the Middle East to bring sweetness and light to the world. We're there to get something we and our friends in Europe depend on. Namely, oil."

So there you have it, straight from the world's most appealing family: we invaded Iraq for the oil, but we may have made a mistake by not killing millions when we got there.

BONUS: Decter's daughter is married to Elliot Abrams, making him John Podhoretz's brother-in-law. Abrams, now on the National Security Council, pleaded guilty to misleading Congress over Iran-Contra. He also tried to cover-up the 1981 El Mozote massacre in El Salvador, in which 900 men, women and children were slaughtered.

I imagine big family occasions with this merry clan are really something.

"Has the caterer gotten here yet?"

"No. Let's drop napalm on his town and then move house to house, shooting any survivors."

"Sounds good! What about the band? Are they going to play standards, or more contemporary stuff?"

"I don't know. Let's pay a proxy army to rape and murder all the women and then go on a bloody rampage, killing thousands more."

Posted at July 31, 2006 05:26 AM | TrackBack

She has friends in Europe? Like, France? Sheesh, this happens every time: just when you really start respecting someone they show their ugly side...

Posted by: abb1 at July 31, 2006 05:50 AM

What if humanity finally reached an intellectual level that allowed them to solve problems with diplomacy, thereby making all wars obsolete? Then I say "Ain't no money to be made in that, so nuke the bastards!"

Posted by: americanintifada at July 31, 2006 06:01 AM

So my Hummer and I are wondering when we get all that cheap oil we're killing people for?

Hahaha. I crack myself up. If I had the money to buy a Hummer, and I'm not even close to having it, I wouldn't waste the money on a Hummer.

Posted by: SPIIDERWEB™ at July 31, 2006 06:58 AM

Spider Web,

I would definitely buy a Hummer, but it would have to be the Clixxon version. Afterall, a 25 dollar blowjob is much cheaper than the 100 dollars it costs to fill-up a gas tank today. Not only cost effective, but it feels better too!!!

Posted by: americanintifada at July 31, 2006 07:09 AM

They should make a Hummer that works on human semen, because that would be close to the physical embodiment of a pun.

Posted by: Adam Kotsko at July 31, 2006 08:25 AM

Damn - just noticed that El Mozote was already linked. Muchos sorrys.

Posted by: Jesus B. Ochoa at July 31, 2006 08:30 AM

What's wrong with a little insurgency anyway? Too violent? Genocide as a solution to violence. Brilliant!

I once had a conversation with a Christian:

"The bible has too much genocide commanded by god in it."

"Well, if you leave people alive, they just raise an army and come after you later."

"I just said genocide was wrong, I didn't say it wasn't effective."

Posted by: Doug at July 31, 2006 08:32 AM

I don't give a damn about a dimwitted gasbag like J-Pod. But I wonder how we'll feel in 100 years from
now when historians explain how a large fraction of America's punditry came to resemble that of 1930's Germany, and virtually no one said anything.

Posted by: Bernard Chazelle at July 31, 2006 09:23 AM

It boils down to just how important we all are.

After all, what could be more important than America especially when America produces things like the Pod.

It reminds me of a fellow I once knew who fooled me for quite a while. For years I thought he was a normal human being. Then one day during a conversation he told me he would do anything to protect his family. I thought about it for a bit and in reply I asked him if that meant he would cheat, steal or even kill to protect his family and upon getting an affirmative reply I told him to leave my house and not to bother to come back.

We all are just so bloody important. America and Israel must survive at all costs. In fact we should be willing to steal, cheat or kill in order to insure the survival of our two great nations. This in fact is what makes us so great.

It is so important to understand the importance of how important we are because it is more important than anything else.

Posted by: rob payne at July 31, 2006 10:19 AM

It's just business as usual again. We did it to the Indians and nobody seemed to complain. Not enough guilty conscience to say give your apartment to a Souix, turn your family farm over to the Pima Tribe, or how about, pick up a Navaho and give him a ride when you see him/her walking across the desert. Turn the lights on in your house, use the blinder to make a smoothy or watch TV and your stealing the Native Americans coal to produce the electricity. Steal the land, Cheat them out their mineral resourses, preach the Manifest Destiny Lie. George's foreign policy IS NOTHING George invented, ir's just business as usual again.

Posted by: Mike Meyer at July 31, 2006 10:49 AM

Of Course! I should have thought of that, it was their fault for being there when the bomb hit. It must be that old asymmetrical warfare again just like the prisoners at Gitmo when they hung themselves.

Posted by: rob payne at July 31, 2006 04:02 PM

When they pull out the metal shards from the bleeding wounds of the dying children, they'll see these beautiful words: "Made in USA" and, if they're lucky, maybe an American flag next to it.

And then the question will not be "why do they hate us?"
It'll be "Why don't they hate us more?"

Posted by: Bernard Chazelle at July 31, 2006 05:18 PM

Bring back the guillotine, pals...the French knew what to do with it.

Posted by: En Ming Hee at July 31, 2006 10:18 PM

Guillotines are historicaly only for use on monarchs and aristocracy. George would have to be crowned king. Come to think of it, you may have something there En Ming Hee.

Posted by: Mike Meyer at July 31, 2006 10:35 PM

Long Live King George! Now off with his head! Hey, wait a minute! That would mean Long Live King Dick! Off with his head! Whoa! Not again! Then Long Live King Dennis! Ouch! Then a Reign of Terror until we find someone whose plutocratic head is not owned by lobbyists. This could take a VERY LONG TIME!

Posted by: americanintifada at July 31, 2006 11:00 PM


Cutting their heads off would not hurt them one bit as it would be like cutting your toenails for a normal human being. Nothing but extra baggage.

Posted by: rob payne at July 31, 2006 11:27 PM

Who said the blade has to be sharp?

Posted by: americanintifada at July 31, 2006 11:39 PM

How could you be so blunt?

Posted by: rob payne at August 1, 2006 12:06 AM

It rubbed off from King George! Why else would a typically non-violent pacifist get frustrated to the point that he cries for blood and revenge? In the words of General Joffre "Revanche! Revanche!"

Posted by: americanintifada at August 1, 2006 12:15 AM

Good point! No pun intended of course. My mom has the right idea, every time Bush comes on the TV she hits the mute button.

Posted by: rob payne at August 1, 2006 12:32 AM

How can your mom stomach looking at his face? I shut the TV off when any president is on, just like daddy used to do, all the way back to Ike's days. He would shake his head and say "Goddamn propaganda!" And he was a Republican!

Posted by: americanintifada at August 1, 2006 12:47 AM

And rightly so. I think Ike was the first president to use campaign ads on tv. It was some cartoon characters marching along and the theme song was "You like Ike, I like Ike." Very, very effective and reminiscent of Lieberman’s recent campaign ads.

Posted by: rob payne at August 1, 2006 01:04 AM

Jonathan is being characteristically modest. He's actually remembering that Thanksgiving that he, and other deserving Stutts undergrads, were actually invited to dinner at the Podhoretz's. The scene was a little different, as I recall it. It was 1984, and Stutts was 100 percent behind getting democracy going in El Salvador, so it was a come as your favorite death squad party. My, the laughs we had -- amplified by the cocaine patriotically brought in by some of Pod's favorite CIA friends, helping out freedom in Nicaragua! I particularly remember Madge, gathering the Salvadoran maids together and having them lie in a heap while she squirted catchup on them. "It's not only a vegetable," she said, "its the fake blood of freedom!" But though ferocious in their writing, the Pods have the tenderest hearts. One of the maids had a military aged son, and they personally interceded to have him tortured rather than executed by the forces of freedom in San Salvador. They were willing to take some flack for that from the ultras, too. I call it profiles in Courage.

Stutts has always been there on the front lines. Especially if there was any freedom fightin' crack involved. The rumba line that night was unbelievable.

Posted by: roger at August 1, 2006 01:22 AM

You're right on again! Stupid Americans will buy anything as long as the commercial has a catchy jingle! Even one of those gas-chugging, over-sized, extended-penis Hummers like the one owned by the Governator! Dollars to donuts says Big Arnold wins again.

Posted by: americanintifada at August 1, 2006 01:23 AM


Molly Ivins was right when she said Schwarzenegger looks like a used condom stuffed with walnuts.

By the way did you know that the side view mirrors on hummers actually have the ability to fold back flat against the body of the vehicle? The reason for this is that it makes it a smaller target in case of any incoming missiles headed towards the owner's carport.

I think you are probably right about Ahhnult winning again, after all he is probably the worst possible choice unless Pete Swillson decides to run again with some more snack taxes. Of course Davis the, implacable one, might run with a new energy plan for California, I understand he has been spending a lot of time with rubber band powered balsa wood model planes.

But I think it will be Ahhnult because he said "Ahhll Be Bach."

And so it was.

Posted by: rob payne at August 1, 2006 01:56 AM


Back in August of 2001, Arnold was about to release his movie "Collateral Damage", but cancelled the release after the Towers went down. My personal opinion is that George promised him California if he postponed the movie release due to the fact that the term 'collateral damage' was needed for the upcoming wars and wouldn't sit well with the populace that was about to pay for his Crusades.

Then came the 'special election' (which I voted "no" on) and 50 million tax dollars were subsequently spent on that election. Arnold weaseled his way into office and points the finger at Gray Davis for California's deficit, which turns out to be 50 million dollars! Davis loses because he's tied up with the Enron fiasco, and Arnold's movie is released after he takes office. In the words of Gomer Pyle "Soo-prise, soo-prise, soo-prise!"

Arnold rides around Sacramento in his gas chugging Hummer, smoking big fat Cuban cigars supplied by his wife from JFK's collection purchased before the Cuban embargo and never offers to pay back those of us in California suffering from his mismanagement that 50 million pilfered from the treasury. I'm not a conspiracy theorist because conspiracies are propaganda stories foisted on the masses by politicians and I will never believe what the government tells me.

Many years ago the old 'Mr. Show' on HBO had a sketch about intellect being based on income where IQ doesn't matter, only bank account totals. In that context, Arnie and Bush are the smartest guys in the universe!

Posted by: americanintifada at August 1, 2006 02:30 AM


Yeah, I voted no on the special election as well not that I was a huge fan of Davis but I did not see where a special election was called for because not only was Davis suckered by Enron but so were most of the California politicos so it seemed inappropriate to blame the whole thing on Davis. Bush also played a role in the energy crisis. He was calling up other governors telling them what a great thing it was. Then after Bush became president he told California that it had created the energy crisis so it had to fix the crisis itself. Thus we had a glimpse of what was to come from our moderate republican president, remember he presented himself as a moderate? Jesus H. Christ.

So we ended up with Arnold for Governor, Bush for president and the damage was far more than collateral, we were totaled.

The rest is history or I wish it was.

And yeah that 50 million, all the fault of Davis and Arnold becomes the first Austrian to finally conquer the world. Everyone thinks California is a blue state yet you should see the knuckle dragging right wing screw balls in my neck of the woods. They all drive trucks the size of a semi, revere Limbaugh like he is the second coming, swear by their guns and are afraid of Tesla and the black helicopter brigade. In fact once outside of the Bay Area it is like going back in time about 70 years.

Last Fourth of July the downtown had several thousand American flags down both sides of the main drag, I wanted to vomit. I feel like I moved to another planet. Every other car has a flag attached to its antenna with a pinhead behind the wheel with big ears that stick out like tea cup handles. I may never get used to this place.

Posted by: rob payne at August 1, 2006 03:05 AM

I know exactly what you mean because I was raised behind the Orange Curtain in John Wayne country and still refuse to accept the re-naming of Orange County Airport. Back in the sixties it was close to impossible to be a long-haired hippy wierdo. The most frequently asked question was "Hey! Are you a boy or a girl?" to which I replied "Why don't you suck my dick and find out!"

I lived in SF for a while and now Sonoma County, but even up here there are flag-waving rednecks, still Bohemian and not willing to risk their wealth and power for any 'barbarian' like me! And you can call me 'a' now that we're all friends of the revolution.

Posted by: americanintifada at August 1, 2006 04:22 AM

shorter j-pod: "since we're going to commit illegal war crimes lets go hitler on the world."

Posted by: Terrible at August 1, 2006 07:55 AM

Too late, been done.

Posted by: Mike Meyer at August 1, 2006 11:36 AM