Tuesday, August 03, 2004

An Email Exchange 

So it ain't the Onion but it's not bad for on the fly. My friend forwarded me something about librarians standing up to the Justice Department, and I wrote back that I could imagine a news segment called "Conan the Librarian" on Headline News, but also said I could imagine killer robots killing a lot of people. To which he responded with this, and oh boy, the hilarity ensued!

Ed. I shall be known as JR, along with three others JPA, PA, and BL. Not that this means anything, unless you're one of the 6 people who reads this and also happens to know whose initials these are, and who probably also happened to be part of this bulk email exchange, but anyway, that's the way it is.

JPA -- Well, really Joe, what else are killer robots gonna do with their time?

Plant flowers, make small dessert items?

JR -- You know, Jim, it's really too bad you have to resort
to the politics of hate. While you act with cynicism
and pessimism, I talk of a place inclusive of
everyone, killer robots and all. And it's people like
you, who try to bring up class warfare and make this a
discussion of hate that go against the American way.
You know, the American people are tired of the
politics of hate, they're tired of your kind of
pessimism, and they want to believe in their country
again. Now you can walk around saying ALL killer
robots are killers, or you can try to open your arms
and include everyone. And we are doing everything in
our power to make sure that these bloodthirsty killer
robots are dealt with appropriately.
Thank you.

JPA -- i suppose my main concern is that when you refer to them as killer
robots it somehow implies they have done or will do some killing. as long as
this is confined to the killing of harmful insects, non-endangered plants, and
the germans it's fine, but if they are killing other things then i think we
will have to take a long hard look at allowing them most favored non-human
entity status with which you bleeding hearts seem to be so determined to do.

BL-- You know, this is such a typical, nuanced liberal position. "I voted
for the killer robots before I voted against them." "If the robots only
kill Germans, they're not really killers." We're in a war against a new
kind of enemy -- a robotic enemy. Our oceans do not protect us anymore.
On the day when the killer robots were invented, everything changed.
And that's why we must be resolute in the face of the robots, and stay
the course. If we back down now, we would be giving aid and comfort to
these evildoing robots, and causing irreparable harm to the elite
anti-robot commando units that are our front lines in the war on robots.

President Bush has provided stellar leadership in this new conflict for
a new century. You, on the other hand, are a flip-flopper. A vote for
you is as good as a vote for the robots.


JR -- All I'm saying is that we need to find a common ground
where the economy can continue to grow itself, where
we take a responsible approach to dealing with the
killer robots, where business can thrive, where new
innovations can drive the economy, where the average
person can keep more of their own money in their
pockets, and where killer robots have free reign to
kill anything that moves.

Because before we start talking about how many and who
the robots will kill, let's first think of how killer
robots help this nation grow. They feed industry.
They force new inventions. They provide jobs. They
scare black people. And if we start talking about
killer robots being "killers" and "robots" and if we
play into the politics of hate, then we truly have let
the killer killer robots win. And we can't do that.
Some of our greatest, most responsible companies are
working on this problem right now, making great new
killer robots that are not necessarily going to kill
everyone around them: these are responsible corporate
citizens. WE need a balanced approach to the killer
robot question, and that's what I'm offering. If we
let killer robots fall by the wayside then that
challenges intellectual property rights everywhere,
and that, paired with a gay marriage or two, would
tear out the very fabric of our country! And then
we're ruled by freedom hating freedom haters. Is that
what you propose, Jim?

Thank you.

PA-- well, i for one have welcomed our new killer robot overlords from the
beginning. i wish them every success. they will make this country
more powerful by eliminating its greatest weakness - its people.

JPA-- I'm going to let the record speak for itself:

"When I think of KR109-X, I'm reminded of an old poster on the
interstellar frontier: Functional or Non-Functional!"
- JPA, March 13, 2004

"I don't know where KR109-X is, and frankly, I don't really care."
- JPA, May 1, 2004

"Well, we've got to assemble a posse - er, a commission to track down
these bloodthirsty killer robots, squeeze their oils and fluids, and, you
know, bring 'em to justice. NOW, WATCH ME DRIVE!!!!"
-JPA July 36, 2004

Hell, I liked the killer robot overlords so much, I bought the company!

JR-- Freedom.

GH-- first - is this the new army of cyber-cheneys?

second - if they are NOT cyber-cheney-clones (C3's), should
we mate with them if they're hot? what are the laws for
paternity suits? of course, every other appliance I have
tried copulating with has appearently hated me, or so the
trips to the emergency room would imply. I don't want to
flip flop on this, so I'm getting the facts straight.

Move over, funny political humorists! Here comes us!

And the weird thing is, this will probably be an actual political debate in, like, three years.



Robert Fisk remains in Iraq, writing regularly for the Independent. He is actually there. He is actually living in the country. Believe it or not, neither Donald Rumsfeld nor George W. Bush actually live in Iraq. Neither one. I know, it was a shock to me, too. I've heard so much good news from the president that I figured he must be over there fighting alongside his brethren --

-- I imagine there's a black guy named Washington who's always listening to Jimi Hendrix and talking about getting laid; his best friend, Rispozzi, an obnoxious Brooklynite with a good heart who never would have thought he'd get along with a "spook" and wears a Queen of Hearts playing card in his helmet; and then there's Spellman, the shy, bookish young man who seems meager but has a heart filled with surprising bravery, who left his college sweetheart and new fiance back home and often stares at her photo for hours on end; these men, these few, these brothers, each of whom would proudly die beside their president, their inspiration, but most important, their fellow soldier Georgie, the humble southern man who's beyond reproach and always quick with a joke, a kind word or some good advice, these men are his family over there. Yes, these men would stick their heads in the mud for G-Man, and they wouldn't think twice. Because he thinks of them first and the only thing more obvious than his love for his new brothers is his love for his country. And he blows a lot of coke.

But no! It's not like that, come to find out. Apparently George W. Bush lives right in Washington even now, and while he has some contacts over there, I wonder if he can get an accurate rendition of what's actually "going down" as Washington, my imaginary soldier friend for Georgie, might say, in Iraq.

Robert Fisk is there. This piece is a reminder of the day-to-day in that country we brough war upon. You can hum that song "There's Something Happening Here..." to yourself as you read if you like.

Indeed, watching any Western television station in Baghdad these days is like tuning in to Planet Mars. Doesn't Blair realise that Iraq is about to implode? Doesn't Bush realise this? The American-appointed "government" controls only parts of Baghdad - and even there its ministers and civil servants are car-bombed and assassinated. Baquba, Samara, Kut, Mahmoudiya, Hilla, Fallujah, Ramadi, all are outside government authority. Iyad Allawi, the "Prime Minister," is little more than mayor of Baghdad. "Some journalists," Blair announces, "almost want there to be a disaster in Iraq." He doesn't get it. The disaster exists now.

I keep re-reading Tony Blair's statement. "I remain convinced it was right to go to war. It was the most difficult decision of my life." And I cannot understand it. It may be a terrible decision to go to war. Even Chamberlain thought that; but he didn't find it a difficult decision - because, after the Nazi invasion of Poland, it was the right thing to do. And driving the streets of Baghdad now, watching the terrified American patrols, hearing yet another thunderous explosion shaking my windows and doors after dawn, I realise what all this means. Going to war in Iraq, invading Iraq last year, was the most difficult decision Blair had to take because he thought - correctly - that it might be the wrong decision. I will always remember his remark to British troops in Basra, that the sacrifice of British soldiers was not Hollywood but "real flesh and blood." Yes, it was real flesh and blood that was shed - but for weapons of mass destruction that weren't real at all.
This is a man who has seen it all several times over and the thing that anchors it all is a sadness. A real sadness from a real person who's really there. Others should be very sad, too.


Just the Juicy Bits 

Damfacrats has the dirt on a little rumor involving Kid Hetero and his man man at the Polish Embassy. Oh, this is some Tasty Tuesday morning fare. I'll just cut to the chase.
The rumor goes like this: Ashe and Bush were both cheerleaders at Yale and were roommates and lovers. While they were performing some kind of Bones homosexual ritual, someone took a photo. Moreover, Bush and Ashe have continued their sexual relationship.

Republicans are already calling this a complete fabrication and a barrel of hate-filled lies. Of course they still haven't even seen the movie, so, ba-dum BUM!


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