Dim Bullets in a Dark Tunnel

98th Street tunnel, Henry Hudson Parkway

  • The new quagmire: Seven questions for Barack Obama on Afghanistan. With hindsight of Mary McCarthy’s Vietnam memoirs and penned by retired Air Force lieutenant colonel.
  • Greenwald calls Jane Harman a bunch of names although strangely, hypocrite isn’t one of them. Jeff Stein delves further into the mess.
  • Socialist Andre Damon pretty cynical about everything.
  • Reese Erlich seems to think loosening policy toward Cuba will bring more illicit drug trafficking.
  • Jessie’s bond-trader friend whacks at the Wells Fargo earnings piƱata.
  • Tom Engelhardt ruminates on the constant stream of civilian casualties that largely go unreported on these shores.
  • Dems want to sweep torture hearings under the rug as much as Bush flunkies do.
  • Israelis hawking first-class propaganda junket??!?
  • Bank stress test: a) too big to fail b) too big to fail…
  • Tiny violin playing for pro-torture Judge Bybee.
  • Texas sheriff prosecution for waterboarding by Reagan’s DOJ ignored by current torture advocates.
  • New York food banks stressed.
  • Polish pianist stops the show with anti-U.S. tirade.
  • The new terror alert: Swine flu hype conveniently killing off the torture story. Includes a history of “flu oddities.”

Torture Through the Centuries; The Concise Wingnut

buffet from above

Walk on the ice cubes, not the hot coals

Want to know more about torture? I know that you do. Condi apparently discussed whether detainees should be beat, slapped, sleep-deprived, water-boarded, all the above. McCain’s own accounting is that he broke and falsely admitted to war crimes to make it stop. And yet he has recently flip-flopped on his advocacy. Torture is mostly useless for information-gathering. At best, the threat of it and knowing that it happens is a fear tactic used by tyrants to keep the hoi polloi in line. We’re no better than “our enemies” if we do it. I’ll take the soft cushions please.

My favorite wingnut watchdog has a big piece up at the Village Voice on the conservative blogosphere.

Giant lobster chomps on little people in the subway

14th St. - 8th Ave subway
A Tom Otterness lobster
Tom Otterness Rocks 8th Ave.
For those who have never been there, here’s more info. What’s Tom up to now?

I watched Under the Volcano. While Albert Finney rocks this sort of drinking and drugs kamikaze movie (e.g. The Dresser, Leaving Las Vegas, Hurly Burly, Boogie Nights, Requiem for a Dream), I’m tired of them. The Day of the Dead (the Mexican holiday) footage is nice. On the other hand, Resident Evil: Extinction is a much more satisfying clusterfuck with its numerous homages to itself and several other horror and sci-fi classics. Plus it’s totally believable.

I’ve been following the protests over the Olympic torch. The media attention is extraordinary and yet, last week, it was confirmed that the USA is yet another country that officially ytortures and the administration literally conjured up legal excuses for it. As it turns out, Jack Bauer and Fox’s 24 provided some of the inspiration. I’m sure a lot of us are outraged (also for finding out we were lied to again). Where is the media on this one? Oh, I see… it’s U.S. you’re talking about….