Go to previous post:
Maureen Dowd and Damon Knight!

Go to Electrolite's front page.

Go to next post:
The left of flesh and blood.

Our Admirable Sponsors

July 18, 2004

Catch-up post. So, how about that (1) Iraqi “handover” (2) John Edwards (3) New York Post (4) Seymour Hersh speech (5) Spider-Man movie (6) Martha Stewart sentence (7) new poll (8) Federal Marriage Amendment (9) Canadian election (10) intelligence report (11) Bill Clinton book (12) new poll (13) ongoing genocide (14) inane Hollywood scandal (15) new poll (16) upcoming political convention (17) Microsoft security flaw (18) thuggish Dick Cheney remark (19) blogosphere controversy (20) Fahrenheit 9/11 (21) new poll?

Okay, that’s done. Onward, then. [09:35 AM]

Welcome to Electrolite's comments section.
Hard-Hitting Moderator: Teresa Nielsen Hayden.

Comments on Catch-up post.:

PiscusFiche ::: (view all by) ::: July 18, 2004, 11:04 AM:

I can combine two of those. I saw a review for Spider-Man somewhere online--a user review, nobody writing for a paper--where somebody reviewed Spider-Man solely on the virtue of it NOT being Fahrenheit 9/11.

Scorpio ::: (view all by) ::: July 18, 2004, 11:49 AM:

Oh, and that failure to even get the Hate Amendment up for a vote!


Mary Kay ::: (view all by) ::: July 18, 2004, 12:08 PM:

Hoping this means life approaches being under control and that we'll be hearing more from you.



zwichenzug ::: (view all by) ::: July 18, 2004, 12:22 PM:

Mostly I agree. But (11) Bill Clinton book? C'mon!

Bruce Arthurs ::: (view all by) ::: July 18, 2004, 01:09 PM:

I think the Iraqis should never have handed John Edwards over to the New York Post.

Seymour Hersh's speech about the Martha Stewart sentencing was great, what there was of it, but since he decided to give it in the middle of a showing of Spiderman 2 and the theatre audience beat him senseless with a rain of Milk Duds, we'll never hear the end of it.

Submit the Federal Marriage Amendment to a vote of Canadian voters? Works for me.

Everyone should be alarmed at the new intelligence report that claims the sales of Bill Clinton's book qualify as an "ongoing genocide" of forests.

Sad to hear that Arnold Schwarzenegger won't be speaking at the Republican convention after all. But it would have been a scandal in Hollywood and Sacramento if he'd gone ahead with his plan to use the time-travel device from the Terminator movies to perform a live-action presentation of Dick Cheney's guide to conservative sex.

And I certainly hope that Microsoft will soon issue a patch to fix the security flaw that allows anyone, anywhere on the Net, to say anything they want about Fahrenheit 9/11.

Ulrika ::: (view all by) ::: July 18, 2004, 02:14 PM:

Clearly, I'm not keeping up with the news. I have absolutely no idea what the inane Hollywood scandal might be.

Heard about the car-zapper, though. First thought: hey, what a great tool for the bad guys!

Ulrika ::: (view all by) ::: July 18, 2004, 02:15 PM:

P.S. - Welcome back. I've missed you.

Kevin Hayden ::: (view all by) ::: July 18, 2004, 02:31 PM:

Is it permissible to be a Yankees fan? As for the other topics, I definitely think Paris Hilton knows nothing about them. (wb, Patrick)

Bill Higgins-- Beam Jockey ::: (view all by) ::: July 18, 2004, 03:47 PM:

(22)Still wondering. Did you ever see the Master and Commander film? How did you like it?

jane ::: (view all by) ::: July 18, 2004, 03:52 PM:

Wow, being over in Scotland means that at least half of that doesn't make sense, which is the Good News.

The better news is that you are posting again, even if I don't understand half of it.


Charlie Stross ::: (view all by) ::: July 18, 2004, 04:43 PM:

Welcome back!

My choices for topics (22) and (23), the kiddie porn video footage from Abu Ghraib, and the reports that Prime Minister Iyad Allawi personally executed six suspected rebels in a police station (and may have been a Ba'ath hit-man in a previous life) would appear to be too depressing to contemplate. So why not discuss happy smiley fun things like appropriate methodologies for weaving asbestos-fibre hand baskets prior to departing in an infernal direction, and the best microbrew pubs in Manhattan? (Hint: the former is a red herring and the latter is what we technically term a "leading question" ...)

Rob Hansen ::: (view all by) ::: July 18, 2004, 05:51 PM:

>and the best microbrew pubs in Manhattan? >(Hint: the former is a red herring...)

Did you know that The Red Herring is in fact Plastic Man's arch-nemesis these days? His M.O. is to turn up in the middle of cases that are nothing to do with him.

Terry Karney ::: (view all by) ::: July 18, 2004, 09:17 PM:

I think the FMA was a brilliant piece of (evil) political theater, which; while I think not enough to matter, did Bush more good than harm, and wasted the nation's time.

Now that I'm done with being serious, and overly literal minded, welcome back and everyone knows MS has flaws, but hey... they are still the one to beat.


Christopher Davis ::: (view all by) ::: July 18, 2004, 10:12 PM:

If the FMA was really brilliant maneuvering, there would not have been twice as many Republicans crossing the line than there were Democrats (even counting Zell Miller as a Democrat, which despite the label I generally don't).

In particular, giving John McCain a chance to publically disagree with GWB was probably not their best move at a time when they're trying to use him as a counterweight to Kerry after the Kerry-McCain speculation/rumors/discussion/etc.

Copeland ::: (view all by) ::: July 19, 2004, 06:05 AM:

God,...and there was Congresswoman Corrine Brown's censure on the floor of the House:

"Striking my words from the House Floor is just one more example of the Republican Party's attempt to try and cover up what happened during the 2000 election."

P.S. Welcome back Patrick

James Slusher ::: (view all by) ::: July 19, 2004, 08:29 AM:

(1)publicity stunt
(2)good guy
(3)wrong, so wrong
(4)good point
(5)True to comic, emotionally immature
(6)publicity stunt
(8)publicity stunt
(9)I don't know
(11)good guy, don't like him 900+ pages worth though.
(13)very, very bad
(14)publicity stunt
(16)garbage + publicty stunt
(18)garbage + publicity stunt + what's new?
(19)see 18
(20)I love a good melodrama

James Slusher ::: (view all by) ::: July 19, 2004, 08:31 AM:

OH, I forgot the mets- GARBAGE

Go Braves!

Ken Houghton ::: (view all by) ::: July 19, 2004, 10:31 AM:

Which Martha Stewart sentence: 5 months, 5 months, and 19 more months or "I cheated no one"?

Welcome back.

Epacris ::: (view all by) ::: July 19, 2004, 10:40 AM:

Anyone here commenting on the FTA*, rather than the FMA?
... and welcome back from RL ...

(meanwhile it looks like one cartoonist's cat-related worries are being fed into his strip to help explain why he's been off-air)

(*with Australia)

Xopher ::: (view all by) ::: July 19, 2004, 11:56 AM:

And the Mets.

The museum is doing fine, but the opera is having financial trouble...or is it the other way around?

Yay! Brother Patrick is back in town!

HP ::: (view all by) ::: July 19, 2004, 01:35 PM:

Patrick: Your Sidelight, "It's my fault, pleads Scottish sci-fi scrivener" goes straight to Ken's post about child rape at Abu Ghraib. Rather disconcerting, until I scrolled a bit.

I think you want the permalink at the top of the article, not the permalink at the end of the article.

Melissa Singer ::: (view all by) ::: July 19, 2004, 02:11 PM:

Patrick, it's too bad you and Teresa weren't with Claire and me and the kids at yesterday's Mets game--that was some _ugly_ baseball (even though we won). You'd've seen classic Mets-type stuff, though performed by members of both teams. At one point, each side had walked in a run. We were dying.

rea ::: (view all by) ::: July 19, 2004, 02:49 PM:

"And the Mets."

"Is it permissible to be a Yankees fan?"

As a Tiger fan, let me say that the Mets looked a lot tougher than the Yankees this year . . .

Terry Karney ::: (view all by) ::: July 19, 2004, 03:13 PM:

Did they lose the vote? yes

Was it it a given the vote was lost from the get-go?


Did they tie up the senate for four days? Yes.

Did it push more substantive issues from the news? Yes.

Did it give them a rallying cry (like abortion, which they'd rather not have outlawed, because it no longer rallies the troops) about how the evil, "homosexual agenda," is being rammed down the unwilling throats of the god-fearing? yes.

Will its defeat help to turn out those opposed to Bush, or for him?

The victory may be phyrric, esp. with all the hullaballoo, all the vocal opposition, which makes the cries of evil agenda easier to bruit about.

How much was lost to the memory hole in the past few weeks, because we were watching the magician's left hand?


Jon Meltzer ::: (view all by) ::: July 19, 2004, 04:36 PM:

(24) The I. Robot movie, and Susan Calvin mentioned in yesterday's New York Times editorial ...

Shannon ::: (view all by) ::: July 20, 2004, 02:01 AM:

Dang it! I hate it when I have to show my ignorance, but OK. What is the "blogosphere controversy?" Has there been a violent coup de'tat within the High Council of the Blogosphere?

friend ::: (view all by) ::: July 20, 2004, 10:27 AM:

where did you go? you were once a daily stop on my interbloggy web voyage. Oh, well. i know what it's like to find an audience, then want to abandon it. ellipsis... YOU MONSTERISH MONSTROUS MONSTER. Consider yourself un-bookmarked, you beast.

Stefan Jones ::: (view all by) ::: July 20, 2004, 12:56 PM:

With friends like friend, who needs . . .

Madeleine Robins ::: (view all by) ::: July 21, 2004, 05:10 PM:

Welcome back!

What, Ahnuld's "Girlie Men" didn't make the list?

Dan Hoey ::: (view all by) ::: July 24, 2004, 02:13 AM:

Hokay, can someone explain how 'bout that teaser headline on AOL a few days ago about "Uranium claim corroborated" or something? With a picture of the Preznetchul party at the SOTU?

I didn't ask AOL to go into details, and I didn't hear any more about it in the media. So is it a paid campaign ad on AOL? I googled up some netnoise about some Iraqi interims claiming they found uranium import documents, but mostly it's full of Rah Rah we found WMDs just like they said we knew.

Fabrication? Copies of the original fabrication? Aimlessly sowing doubt? Is there a shred of there there?

Ken Houghton ::: (view all by) ::: August 12, 2004, 04:36 PM:

I just want to note for the record that I have never been prouder on my (soon-to-be-ex)governor than I am right now.

Clark E Myers ::: (view all by) ::: August 18, 2004, 06:18 PM:

Taking this as the closest open thread - anybody out there want to go on record as being in complete agreement with Mr. Agre's

(Red Rock Eater has seen eras when it was well worth close attention)

definition of conservatism and understanding of history?

In light of say George Washington's refusing the offer of a crown from his officers - at least a debating point not to be ignored - however seriously one takes the Beards as the be all and end all analysis of the foundation - I suggest the analysis has a lot of strawman in it.

Patrick Nielsen Hayden ::: (view all by) ::: August 19, 2004, 12:52 AM:

I think the term "conservatism" is sometimes used to mean things which are objectively more benign than Phil Agre's model allows room for. As Samuel R. Delany reminded us a long time ago, the fact that certain values are overemphasized by the hard right (valor, loyalty, etc) doesn't mean they're not things worth valuing.

That said, I think Agre does an admirable job of cutting through the bullshit and addressing what most modern self-identified "conservatism" is all about. It's about re-creating a society of orders and classes, it's fundamentally at odds with the social and technical needs of the modern world, it must be comprehensively defeated, and it will be.

I have a few quibbles with Agre's magisterial article. For instance, I think he's a bit too dismissive of unions. Yes, they have overtones of medieval craft guilds negotiating with the upper orders, but you know something, in Guatamala their success is a precondition for even the beginnings of democracy. I also think he knows this perfectly well, and that the flaw is in his essay, not in his thinking.

But I think he's spot on 99 times for every single false note. He knows what the real fight is about, and he knows who's feeding us a line.

Patrick Nielsen Hayden ::: (view all by) ::: August 19, 2004, 12:58 AM:

(However, perhaps further arguing about sidebar links could move into the just-begun Open Thread 8.)

David Goldfarb finds some comment spam that seems to have been missed ::: (view all by) ::: October 30, 2004, 02:53 PM:

online drugs + online gambling again.