Small Web

[updated 7/8/08]A friend emailed today. One of my webpages came up as one of the few results when he searched Google for a phrase no one could ever associate with either of us: “bear tranquilizers” rape. Even more curious, the link Google provided was a dead-end, perhaps related to changes in blogging software over the years. My own site-search had trouble matching the complete search string.

I found the main entry and the secondary entry that probably created the match when the two entries were merged in an archive that may no longer exist, except in Google’s memory. I re-read both of these entries (the second is a series of four to five entries) and I enjoyed them again. Perhaps, you will, too.


PS: Testing that Google link above turned up another of my pages for the first time. No, not this one, which should appear in search results eventually. Instead, this page was listed — and it’s still out there. The Web is the trash heap future archaeologists and comedians will mine.

PPS: CKO points out that 12 hours later, Google lists *this* entry in that search — that’s fast. See Behind the Scenes of a Google Query, By Brian Ussery, to see just how fast Google is (responding to a search, not indexing, which was quite fast).

Think Progress » FLASHBACK: Ten Years Ago, Bin Laden Demanded Barrel Of Oil Should Cost $144


Think Progress » FLASHBACK: Ten Years Ago, Bin Laden Demanded Barrel Of Oil Should Cost $144

obl.jpgIn a 1998 interview, Osama bin Laden — the terrorist who organized 9/11 — listed as one of his many grievances against the U.S. that Americans “have stolen $36 trillion from Muslims” by purchasing oil from Persian Gulf countries at low prices. The real price of a barrel of oil should be $144, bin Laden demanded.

Ten years ago today, the price of a barrel of oil was just $11. Heading into this holiday weekend, the price of a barrel of oil rested at $144 — a thirteen-fold increase. …

Testifying before the House Foreign Affairs Committee last May, Anne Korin, the co-director of the Institute for the Analysis of Global Security, reminded Congress about bin Laden’s goal:

[A]bout ten years ago, Osama bin Laden stated that his target price for oil is $144 a barrel and that the American people, who allegedly robbed the Muslim people of their oil, owe each Muslim man, woman, and child $30,000 in back payments. At the time, $144 a barrel seemed farfetched to most. […]

I would like to impress upon this Committee that $144 a barrel oil will be perceived as a victory for the Jihadist movement and a reaffirmation that the economic warfare component of its campaign against the West is a resounding success. There is no need to elaborate on the implications of such a victory in terms of loss of U.S. prestige and our ability to prevail in the Long War of the 21st century.

Indeed, ten years later, a mission accomplished for bin Laden.

Alecto Says:

Boooosh caved into OBL back 2 days before the Mission accomplished speech, or have we all forgot that the ONLY thing OBL wanted, was to remove the bases from Saudi Arabia. And on April 30, 2003 we announced we would do just that. org/ news/ 2003/ 030430-psab01.htm

Think Progress » FLASHBACK: Ten Years Ago, Bin Laden Demanded Barrel Of Oil Should Cost $144

NewMexiKen: Worth knowing

That title is true in more than one sense. NewMexiKen notes another flaw in the “Let’s drill our way out of this hole” argument. Ask a Republican to sponsor legislation requiring all domestic production to be consumed domestically and watch him or her sputter about the Sacred Free Market (half-Santa Claus, half-Old Testament god (the one you really don’t want to piss-off)).

NewMexiKen: Worth knowing

“A record 1.6 million barrels a day in U.S. refined petroleum products were exported during the first four months of this year, up 33 percent from 1.2 million barrels a day over the same period in 2007. Shipments this February topped 1.8 million barrels a day for the first time during any month, according to final numbers from the Energy Department.” (Forbes)

Put another way, we are exporting more than twice as much oil now as we could expect the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to produce when it came online in 15-20 years.


More than twice as much.

NewMexiKen: Worth knowing

ANWR represents a pot o’ gold for BushCo — nothing more than that. Point that out — again and again and again — along with the fact that oil companies already have many leases they aren’t drilling (I thank god, but that’s beside the point). peace, mjh

mjh’s blog — Let’s Finish Destroying What We’ve Started Before Destroying Something New

In other words, 10,000 well permits have been stockpiled by the already cash-bloated oil and gas industry. In addition, 47.5 million acres of onshore public lands are leased by oil and gas companies. Only 13 million of those acres are actually in production. …

New Mexico Wilderness Alliance, Albuquerque

A Quiet Night at Home

For us, the Fourth of July is like Halloween to fundamentalists: A night when evil is abroad, a time when seemingly decent people become devils. At the very least, a time when one realizes just how out of step one is with the broader culture.

My own dislike of the noisy Fourth is magnified by the terror it strikes in poor Lucky Dog. He cowers; he trembles; he slinks from spot to spot, finding no escape. I have held him shaking, his heart pounding; it is hell for him.

When I was a kid, I loved fireworks, of course. I had little interest in snakes and sparklers: I liked flying things, like helicopters and rockets or the spinners one nailed to a tree. I recall wheedling my father into buying a huge assortment of fireworks for an outlandish price. As I got a little older, I bought my own fireworks. There was an afternoon I methodically studied the effect on various objects of single firecrackers extracted from the long chains favored by the Chinese. As you would expect, the effect was delightfully destructive — and in the name of science, yet. I had no sympathy for the neighbor who called to complain and threatened to call the police. Old fart.

But I grew up. While I haven’t put away all childish things, I have turned my back on the destroyers and those who love loudness. I sit here, all the doors and windows closed, the stereo up, the swamper rattling futilely overhead as it sucks in sulfurous smoke, wishing to drown out the noise that so delights others.

A year ago, after a very long period filled with extremely loud, explosive rockets that flew directly over our house, littering our yard, I stormed out into the street and charged my neighbors in a rage, a human Roman candle. For days now, I’ve wondered what to do, where to go, how to escape. Is there anyplace people don’t go mad over pyrotechnics? Dare I take Lucky to the woods or the wilderness. What if there is a passel of patriots where we end up? (I’ve had many camping experiences ruined by gun nuts delighting in noise and destruction. And those were regular days, not even the Day of National Ejaculation.)

The way we celebrate the Fourth is the epitome of Americanism: Short-lived, loud, flashy, expensive, destructive. Underlying it all, the smug certainty that we Americans live in the Shining City Upon the Hill, the Greatest Nation on Earth and of All Time. Add in an aggressive indifference to anyone who doesn’t like the way we do things — We’re Number One, Screw You!

Still, we’re not the only nationalists and chauvinists; it’s as natural to our species as murder. Years ago, in a beautiful campground in Canada, we were awakened by booming music thumping from a stereo as some local began his drunken celebration of Canada Day at 6am. There are loud idiots everywhere. Today is one of their high holy days. peace, mjh

PS: The clearly illegal rocket racket — Operation Slackened Jaw — lasted almost until midnight. The streets and park are littered with debris. – Dozens cited for illegal fireworks

Fire officials show off fireworks confiscated in the past three days

In the last three days, Albuquerque police and fire marshals say they have given out more tickets for illegal fireworks than all five days of enforcement last year.

Since Tuesday, 69 tickets have been written. Additionally, they have confiscated a large amount of fireworks, some of which officials liken more to small explosives.

Fire marshals said they are planning a massive enforcement operation on the night of Independence Day to keep everything safe and legal. They say it will be no small task.

“It appears to be much busier and we anticipate with the fourth being on a Friday night, that it’s gonna be real busy,” an official said.

Firefighters say if you are lighting off your own fireworks, keep it safe and legal.

“If you’re gonna do fireworks, please just do the ones that are sold in the city and not any of the arials or anything because its fun for a while but the whole department is gonna be out tonight,” an official said.

If you are caught with illegal fireworks, you could face a $500 fine and 90 days in jail. If authorities see you launching one, it is punishable with a second ticket of $1000 and up to six months in jail. – Dozens cited for illegal fireworks

How Atheists Grieve

Updated 7/4/08: We got Miss Kitty from the Humane Society 18 years ago. The choice was made easy when she stood on her hind legs to place a paw on each side of my face. Perhaps she was hunting my goattee, but it seemed an affection gesture. Kitty and I both sneezed on the drive home. Years passed before I discovered I am allergic to cats. When I asked the allergist what I could do, he said, “get rid of your cats.” I replied, “Time will take care of that.”

A year and a day has passed since our sweet Miss Kitty died. Her photo appears on my screen frequently. Like most of us, she deserved a better end. peace, mjh

Atheists grieve with anguished sobs, like anyone else. Today, we euthanized Miss Kitty. We returned from 6 nights in Colorado to find she had deteriorated too much. (We thought she might die while we were gone. Our cat-sitting friend and neighbors did the best they could for her while we were gone.) This morning, I found her asleep with her head hanging over the edge of the water dish. For the next hour, she wandered from dish to dish, thinking the next one would quench her thirst. Like Tantalus, whose eternal damnation is largely forgotten in the modern meaning of tantalizing, there was no relief for Kitty. None she could find on her own, though she looked in every dark corner for solace.

I accept we did the humane thing, but I also believe death is final and I don’t wish to hasten it. (And, yet, I am an omnivore. I thrive on the death of others.) There is no heaven and we will never see Kitty again, except on the screensaver. It is terrible to let her go; it is misery to lend a hand, no matter how humane. Now Daedalus pushes Tantalus from my thoughts.

One experience is shared by all: death. Grief is a measure of our capacity to love — they are inseparable. mjh

RIP, Miss Kitty

Green Fire

I love her
and I know
she loves me
though we are
so different
gazing in her eyes
I see the green fire
and believe
she can see it
in mine. mjh

See Merri’s eulogy for Kitty:
Merri’s Dance and Music eNews » Kitty the Cat 1988-2007

Kitty the Cat 1988-2007

[Originally Published on: Tue 07/03/07 at 5:50 pm.]

The 2nd Biggest Asshole in America?

The Page – by Mark Halperin – TIME

Speaking to National Right to Life in Virginia, the top GOP strategist says:

“This is a man who stands up and says he is going to bring Republicans and Democrats together….How can you claim to do that if you are at the same time supporting the divisive practice of using taxpayer dollars to fund abortion?”

Obama team: “Senator Obama is running for president to bring the country together and end the type of divisive politics perfected by Karl Rove.”

The Page – by Mark Halperin – TIME

Think Progress

Think Progress is a frequently updated accounting of the American political scene. Take your meds before you read it. peace, mjh

Think Progress » American Spectator: Obama would lead to ‘fascism’ in America.

In a recent American Spectator article, former Reagan White House political director and QubeTV founder Jeffery Lord gives his vision of what “America would look like in an age of Obama.” According to Lord, “The word is fascism“:

What freedoms will next be targeted with that deadliest trademark of an Obamalander — moral superiority? What do we have when the sole purpose of the government as run by the chilling principles of Obamaland is to “use the political process” to remove freedoms large and small one by one by one?

Someone needs to speak it plainly.

The word is fascism.

Lord isn’t the first conservative to make such wild claims. Last month, former Newt Gingrich aide Tony Blankley wrote in the Washington Times that Obama might be a “dictator” in waiting. (HT: Andrew Sullivan)

Think Progress » American Spectator: Obama would lead to ‘fascism’ in America.

Think Progress » WSJ Editorial Page Ludicrously Claims That Obama Is Running For ‘George Bush’s Third Term’

bushmccain.jpgIn an editorial this morning, the Wall Street Journal stretches the limits of credibility and audaciously claims that Sen. Barack Obama (D-IL) is the candidate running for “George Bush’s third term.”

Think Progress » WSJ Editorial Page Ludicrously Claims That Obama Is Running For ‘George Bush’s Third Term’