Today on Blogcritics
Home » Breathless Blowhards on Iraq: Blogcritics Bulwer Lytton Competition

Breathless Blowhards on Iraq: Blogcritics Bulwer Lytton Competition

Please Share...Tweet about this on Twitter0Share on Facebook0Share on Google+0Share on LinkedIn0Pin on Pinterest0Share on TumblrShare on StumbleUpon0Share on Reddit0Email this to someone

For the last two years in Iraq, it was a dark and stormy night. Then on Sunday, after a semi-successful election, apparently the Sun of Freedom is shining the Light of Democracy through a Rainbow of Rosy Predictions about the future of this once-dangerous hell-hole.

Dare we say it?

Yes, let’s do.

MISSION ACCOMPLISHED.

Yes, the election in Iraq finally took place. Everything is now beautiful. It was worth the over 1400 American lives, the 200-plus billion dollars, and the isolation, scorn, and mistrust of our European allies.

How quickly things change! The American-hating, terrorist-loving Leftists have been trampled under the Far Right’s Grapes of Wrath. A disasterous pre-ejaculatory orgasm-interruption known as “early withdrawal” has been turned into a Neo-Con wet dream that brings a Biblical Rapture to the Faithful True Believers in the Messiah of Freedom, George W. Bush!

How can the Right-Wingers fully express their glee with their Brave Commander In Chief?

How do we love thee?

Let us count the ways:



Bulwer Lytton Award
for Most Empty, Blowhard Cliches Per Sentence

FIRST PRIZE: Dave Nalle

“…Every vote cast is a victory for truth and freedom and every success of the new government is a nail in the coffin of the unholy alliance of terrorism, religious extremism and international socialism. When the lies begin we should all be prepared to counter them with facts. When they start spinning their web of deception we will cut through it with the sword of truth. Expose the hatemongers for what they really are and eventually they will lose their sway over those they have duped and deceived. <--[extra points for alliteration here!] Their power will fade and the flowers of evil which they have planted will wither on the vine.”

And more extra points for using the word “cusp” in a headline!

==========

SECOND PRIZE: Mark Edward Manning

“President Bush, on the other hand, is coming up smelling of roses. His wisdom with regard to Iraq has just borne its first significant fruits.

Manning’s horribly mixed metaphor was not able to overcome Nalle’s seemingly infinite stream of archaic, Victorian cliches.

In the end, rose bushes bearing fruit just couldn’t compete with flowers of evil withering on the vine.

==========

THIRD PRIZE: Al Barger

Mr. Barger, who — as a recent Libertarian candidate for Senate — knows how to sympathize with the marginalized Sunni voters, was awarded an Honorable Mention in the Right Wing Blowhard Battle to immortalize the Iraqi election with hideous cliches.

“…This has been a red letter day for the Iraqi people. They have made a massive brave demonstration of positive desire to take control of their own destiny [whew!], and to make a real future for themselves and their children.

Barger was a distant third in the Bulwer Lytton competition, but was voted a special “Judges Honorable Mention” for finding a place for the phrase “peaches and cream”!

And despite the fact that all the contestants were just following their intuitions, thinking outside the box, and showing that when the going gets tough, the tough get going, we have to congratulate all who contributed by saying:

If at first you don’t succeed, try try again!

===========

NOTE: All three winning contestants will be awarded a brand new Thesaurus and a years supply of Ipecac — just in case they accidentally happen to ingest any of their own writings.

Powered by

About Mark Shark

  • http://adamantsun.blogspot.com Steve S

    very well said. It’s about time someone tried to shave the sideburns of rhetoric from the face of the Right.

  • http://www.kalyr.com/weblog Tim Hall

    I suspect the right care more about humiliating the left than they do about stability and democracy in Iraq. Certain members of this site look very much like playground bullies, both in their adolescent attitudes, and their general malevolence.

    Not that the left are any better, sadly. But that shouldn’t be an excuse.

  • http://www.thebmrant.com Matt Egan

    A classic post. Plain and simple.

  • Eric Olsen

    hmm, if the facts on the ground contradict one’s own predictions of sun-blotting apocalypse and the galloping spread of fascism, then one could change the subject

  • Shark

    Thanks kids.

    So far, I’ve gotten three votes FOR, one AGAINST.

    That’s a victory for Freedom, a few baby steps taken for Critical Literary Minds, and the laying of a cornerstone of a Bright Shining City on the Hill of Good Writing — despite the fact that only a tiny percentage of Blogcritics readers voted.

    Eric, re: changing the subject:

    a rocket on the US embassy,
    a British aircraft taken down with a shoulder-fired missile (10 dead),
    two more US soldiers killed today,
    an angry/disenfranchised Sunni population,
    $9 BILLION for reconstruction “missing”,
    the possibility of a Shiite theocracy cozy with Iran,
    and the possibility of a new Iraqi government/police/army as brutal and injust as Saddam…

    Yeh, lemme know when things ‘change on the ground’.

    PS: No one is beyond my satire. It’s Fair & Balanced! And I have more sense of humor in my little toe than all the right-wing blowhards on BC put together.

  • http://www.kalyr.com/weblog Tim Hall

    Now we want some posts written in the style of HP Lovecraft…

  • http://www.elitistpig.com Dave Nalle

    I’m your man for that, Tim.

    But back to the subject.

    Let’s all agree with Shark that this is a dark, dark day for Iraq.

    What more horrible turn of events could befall a nation than that another nation shoiuld spend the blood of its youth and the money of its citizens to set them free from dictatoriship and on the path to democracy.

    Oh, the arrogance of the vile Americans for imposing their hateful agenda of freedom and human rights on the people of Iraq. What of their right to be oppressed and their freedom to live under tyrrany? Was any thought given to that before the hateful Jingos of the Evil Empire stomped in with their jack-boots on to spread this lying gospel of free enterprise, personal responsibility and self-determination.

    What could be more cruel or tasteless than to create in the minds of the Iraqis the illusion of possible freedom when we all know that the only fair government which truly provides for the people is a system of centrally controlled statism – be it Eurosocialism or Islamotheocracy. Stirring up the ambitions of individuals can only lead to dissension, greed and ambition which will unbalance society, lead to capitalist exploitation, and a society filled with the evil tyrrany of enterprise.

    Damn the American Jingos and their defiance of the values of social justice and cultural correctness. Who are they to suggest that some discredited universal value like ‘liberty’ should be introduced as a dangerous experiment in Iraq instead of the proven values of collectivism and state control? They have wronged the people of Iraq and upset the natural balance there, but if we work together my International Brothers we can undo this so called ‘election’ and once more bury the putrid corpse of liberty in Iraq once and for all!

    Dave
    (my apologies to Mussolini for borrowing some of his rhetoric – Juan Cole can have it back now)

  • http://www.kalyr.com/weblog Tim Hall

    No good, Nalle. I didn’t see a single “Loathsome”, “Blasphemous”, “Squamous and Rugose” or “Non-Euclidian” in any of that.

  • http://adamantsun.blogspot.com Steve S

    I for one, am glad the Iraqis got to vote. Every person on the Left that I have talked to, plus all the ones I have seen on tv, have expressed gratitude that this has taken place.

    I’m not sure where Dave gets his take on liberals, must be the ones locked in Dobson’s basement. All the liberals I hear, are saying, things are good, but we should not throw a celebratory party just yet. Sound advice, if you ask me, since things are not completely stablized in Iraq.

    Oh, the arrogance of the vile Americans for imposing their hateful agenda of freedom and human rights on the people of Iraq.

    This is all fine and good, but when did protecting Americans from Al Queda take a back seat to freeing the citizens of another country from tyranny?

    They have wronged the people of Iraq and upset the natural balance there, but if we work together my International Brothers we can undo this so called ‘election’ and once more bury the putrid corpse of liberty in Iraq once and for all!

    You clearly are getting your view of the left from Dobson’s weekly email, aren’t you?

    Not only does your comment demonize (incorrectly) the view of fully 48% of Americans, but it’s just flat out wrong.

  • http://www.elitistpig.com Dave Nalle

    Tim: I’m saving a full-on Lovecraft explosion for a later article. Need to really work on something like that, plus I need to invite my maiden aunts over to feed and coddle me while I work in my garrett.

    And Steve, do you READ Shark’s posts at all? I’m not responding to the vast army of sensible liberals who realize this is a good thing, I’m responding to Shark who’s an ideologically blinded nutjob.

    Dave

  • http://adamantsun.blogspot.com Steve S

    Dave, Shark is satire. (see comment 5, the p.s.)

    And with all due respect Dave, I don’t think you are a nutjob, but having read your serious posts, I have to say you are clearly ideologically blinded.

  • Shark

    DaveNalle, re: comment 7

    Please. Stop. Step away from the keyboard.

    When you’re trying to satirize writing badly, you write even worse.

    Seriously, man, stick to the mind-numbing, pom-pom waving cliche spewing cheerleader stuff.

    And please don’t ever “agree” with me, “Professor”.

    Bush needs you.

    I don’t.

  • http://www.resonation.ca Jim Carruthers

    I cannot believe the presumed credibility of these arm-chair freedom warriors. What ever happened to the proposition: “if voting changed anything, it would be illegal”.

    I can think these goons are nothing more than cargo cultists, who believe if they build a scrim then civil society and accountability will follow. It’s like thinking if you purchase the annual statement of a corporation, that will control the Board of Directors. Or buying lottery tickets makes you rich.

    Events don’t matter at all. Results and consequences do. But then, those are the enemies of bad fiction.

  • http://victorplenty.blogspot.com Victor Plenty

    What?! My lottery ticket portfolio isn’t a sound retirement plan??

    Dammit! Why oh why didn’t I take the Social Security privatization pill?

    Trying to grasp reality firmly by the reins,
    Victor

  • http://www.morethings.com/senate Al Barger

    THIRD place? That’s bullshit. I’m a FAR bigger right wing blowhard than them other punks all put together. I demand a recount.

    Also, ‘peaches and cream’ was a substitution. My firs thought was ‘Ripple and hookers.’

    By the way Shark, do you think that the millions of voters who turned out were NOT making a massive and brave demonstration in the face of threats of assassination?

  • Eric Olsen

    indeed, you have impugned Al in a most pernicious manner

  • http://www.antequeravillarental.com alienboy

    Given the fact that democracy has been established in Iraq, can Mr Barger or Mr Nalle tell us when they will be addressing the lack of true democracy in the USA?

    Perhaps you can invade yourself to do away with the quasi-fascist, neo-communist electoral college system?

  • http://www.resonation.ca Jim Carruthers

    Wasn’t Al really talking about “Peaches and Herb”, or was it “Captain and Tennille”?

    Something with that disco vibe, because if he referred to the Village People, well, we’d know about his side business as a facilitator for “chubby chasers”.

  • Shark

    Barger: “I’m a FAR bigger right wing blowhard than them other punks all put together.”

    Big Al, while I’m almost tempted to agree with you for the first time in recent history, when it comes to blowing hard — especially with cliches pulled right outta Baby Bush’s wastebasket — you can’t touch Manning and Nalle with a ten-foot jingoism.

    Sorry.

    Al’s Question: “…do you think that the millions of voters who turned out were NOT making a massive and brave demonstration in the face of threats of assassination?”

    Sure, but it woulda been better if they would have made a massive and brave demonstration about ten years ago — and topple their own friggin’ dictator.

    I think they’re a buncha opportunistic pussies.

  • http://www.resonation.ca Jim Carruthers

    So what happens when all these people, all hopped up on votin” and stuff invade Kuwait and Saudi Arabia to spread this “democracy” of which you speak?

    And the Kurds move into Turkey to free their brethren who are being held under torture and policestate repression?

  • http://www.morethings.com/senate Al Barger

    Jim, democracies generally don’t go invading one another. That’s a big part of the point of wanting to establish democratic values.

    Shark, you think all those Iraqi voters are “pussies”? I understand that braving threats of slaughter to cast a vote doesn’t rank up there for bravery with sitting in Texas making cheap mockery of the literary style of your political opponents on the internet, but cut them some slack.

  • http://www.resonation.ca Jim Carruthers

    And Al, when did the monarchies of Kuwait and Saudi Arabia change to something other than oligarchies?

    Jim, democracies generally don’t go invading one another. That’s a big part of the point of wanting to establish democratic values.

    Since when did democracy come to mean “not ruled by maniacs”? After all, Weimar Germany was overturned in a democratic election, while the democratically elected government of of Chile was overthrown by a US-backed military coup? And the recent attempted overthrow of the government of Venezuela. And how do you explain the superiority of the same political party in government in Mexico for most of the 20th century.

    Or do you mean the war in the early 80s between Iceland (one of the current era oldest democracies) and the United Kingdom (the mother of all parliaments as the old bag has been called). Not to mention Northern Ireland (which is largely the fault of a bunch of mad Scots when you get down to it).

    Or do you mean the success of bringing whatever you want to call it to apartheid South Africa. Or pre-1948 India?

    Example please?

    Democracies don’t generally invade each other because of power. The political system is irrelevant.

  • http://www.elitistpig.com Dave Nalle

    Steve S: This is all fine and good, but when did protecting Americans from Al Queda take a back seat to freeing the citizens of another country from tyranny?

    Who is to say that solving the problem of Iraq isn’t one of the best ways to weaken Al Queda. We sure seem to have caused them to expend a lot of their manpower and resources there in what appears to be a losing battle. And if they’re in Iraq that means they’re not causing trouble somewhere else.

    Steve S: You clearly are getting your view of the left from Dobson’s weekly email, aren’t you?

    Who’s Dobson?

    Steve S: Not only does your comment demonize (incorrectly) the view of fully 48% of Americans, but it’s just flat out wrong.

    So you’re saying 48% of Americans are opposed to Democracy in Iraq? I find that awfully hard to believe. And if it’s true it’s shameful. Or are you just assuming that all Democrats opposed democracy in Iraq because they oppose Bush? Some of them are more broadminded than that.

    Steve S: Dave, Shark is satire. (see comment 5, the p.s.)

    Oh, I thought satire was a form of humor. My mistake.

    Steve S: And with all due respect Dave, I don’t think you are a nutjob, but having read your serious posts, I have to say you are clearly ideologically blinded.

    Yes, but my ideology is just adherence to truth and freedom rather than pushing some sort of more arcane agenda for or against a particular ideology.

    Jim Carruthers: (some blather that made no sense)

    Alienboy: Given the fact that democracy has been established in Iraq, can Mr Barger or Mr Nalle tell us when they will be addressing the lack of true democracy in the USA?

    Can you explain what you mean? The US isn’t a purely democratic system it’s a representative republic – thank god. Are you suggesting switching over to a plebiscite system? Or perhaps you’re still stuck on the ‘voter fraud’ myth from the last election? I thought even the die hard liberals had given that one up after conclusive proof started coming out that they were deluded.

    Alienboy: Perhaps you can invade yourself to do away with the quasi-fascist, neo-communist electoral college system?

    The electoral college is a quasi-federalist system and it’s already been reformed twice in the past 100 years. Isn’t that enough for you? Maybe you’d like to just shred the Constitution since it’s so inconvenient for your version of social anarchism.

    Shark: Sure, but it woulda been better if they would have made a massive and brave demonstration about ten years ago — and topple their own friggin’ dictator.

    And was that likely to happen when he controlled all communication, the military, the food supply and all the utilities and natural resources in the country?

    Shark: I think they’re a buncha opportunistic pussies.

    On this subject, Ali Fahdil and a group of his friends actually voted against Saddam and his minions in the last election held in Iraq prior to the invasion. They expected to be seized and imprisoned for it, but nothing happened because no one actually bothered to look at the ballots anyway.

    Carruthers: So what happens when all these people, all hopped up on votin” and stuff invade Kuwait and Saudi Arabia to spread this “democracy” of which you speak?

    I imagine you’ll be dancing in the streets, since you hate the elitist plutocrats who run those two countries.

    Carruthers: And the Kurds move into Turkey to free their brethren who are being held under torture and policestate repression?

    Actually, if Kurdistan tries to become independent it’s more likely the Turks will invade them first.

    Dave

  • http://www.resonation.ca Jim Carruthers

    Actually, if Kurdistan tries to become independent it’s more likely the Turks will invade them first.

    Which would somewhat disprove Al’s premise? Geez, can’t you asshats at least get your story straight first?

    So, when are you sansabelt warriors charging over the Khyber pass to put democracy in place in Pakistan?

    At least if you admitted you were cowardly asshats, I might have some respect for you. But with this, not so much.

  • http://www.resonation.ca Jim Carruthers

    I imagine you’ll be dancing in the streets, since you hate the elitist plutocrats who run those two countries.

    Yes, I would, I’m not a big fan of elitist plutocracies either in the USA or Saudi Arabia or in Kuwait (and let’s all Bert and Ernie and ask, what do these things have together)?

    So, I’ll where on the elitist plutocracy side of the fence you’ve fallen on.

  • http://www.elitistpig.com Dave Nalle

    Dave Nalle: Actually, if Kurdistan tries to become independent it’s more likely the Turks will invade them first.

    Carruthers: Which would somewhat disprove Al’s premise? Geez, can’t you asshats at least get your story straight first?

    Well, unlike those of you who are programmed by the great Socialist Mind Control Authority, we ‘asshats’ form our own opinions based on our assessment of actual facts. What I posted about Turkey and the Kurds was my personal, reasonable interpretation of the facts of that relationship and I didn’t clear it with Al.

    Can you get your mind around the concept of people who think individually, or are you too enmired in leftist groupthink to even envision the possibility of independent thought?

    Dave

  • http://adamantsun.blogspot.com Steve S

    So you’re saying 48% of Americans are opposed to Democracy in Iraq?

    No, I’m saying your snide comments imply that. You said generalizations about liberals wanting to undo the election, liberals wanting failure, etc.

    It’s not true. All the liberals I’ve heard from, and read, are glad that Iraqis got to vote, and hope that this is a major turning point towards progress over there.

  • http://www.elitistpig.com Dave Nalle

    Steve, my comment was solely and specifically in response to Shark’s original post on this thread. He seems to think it’s bad to be enthusiastic about democracy in Iraq. I agree, most sensible liberals don’t take that position – but is he sensible?

    Dave

  • http://www.kolehardfacts.blogspot.com Mike Kole

    It used to be the left that was very interested in nation building, and not so long ago. Now that the right is interested and actually doing it, the action becomes primo lampoon fodder.

    Really, as far as I can tell, the Bush Administration is actually carrying the ball for the internationalist cause, in the way internationalists really wish the UN had some effectiveness at.

    The satire is fun, Shark, but it’s all you got. Limited portfolio, you know?

  • http://paperfrigate.blogspot.com DrPat

    Dave Nalle: I got the “Dobson” reference, understood it to mean Dr. James Dobson of “Focus on the Family” – and lately, of opposition to SpongeBob SquarePants.

    What I don’t see is how it applies to you. Maybe Steve S. will blow away some of the froth and answer in more detail…

  • http://www.viewpointjournal.com David Flanagan

    My god Shark! It sure does suck to be you I guess.

    David

  • http://www.resonation.ca Jim Carruthers

    I’m currently watching “Shake Hands With the Devil” on the CBC, which won an award this weekend at Sundance (there’s currently no deal to broadcast this film on teevee in the USA).

    What it highlights is people like Nalle’s enthusiasm for murderous plutocracies which support USA special interests at any cost, and the easy acceptance of ethnic and sectarian power struggles as long as they pay lip service to US interests, is somewhat just beyond disgusting, sort of like swallowing a bit of vomit.

    That I even contemplate and tolerate ordinary monsters like Nalle, makes me sick. And even worse, he will prove me right.

  • http://adamantsun.blogspot.com Steve S

    Maybe Steve S. will blow away some of the froth and answer in more detail…

    Granted, it wasn’t a very clear reference. The Right often gives out responses to it’s troops via email. Dobson is one of the best known for this, but isn’t the only one who does it. In other words, his response was very formulaic and pat.

  • http://www.elitistpig.com Dave Nalle

    Ooh, I’m a ‘monster’ who supports ‘murderous plutocracies’ and accepts ‘ethnic and sectarian power struggles as long as they pay lip service to US interests’.

    Hey Jim, how about you give ONE example of me doing ANY of these or shut your lie-filled pie-hole? I realize that from your colonic vantage point the real world is hard to see, but surely if you’ve formed these impressions they must be based on something, right?

    What I’d like to see is a quote from me saying that ‘murderous plutocracies’ or ‘ethnic and sectarian power struggles’ are desirable in their own right and not merely as an alternative to far worse situations which already exist.

    I won’t hold my breath.

    Dave

  • Shark

    Brave Al: “I understand that braving threats of slaughter to cast a vote doesn’t rank up there for bravery with sitting in Texas making cheap mockery of the literary style of your political opponents on the internet, but cut them some slack.”

    1) That’s my job.

    2) It takes more bravery to be a Bush-hating ‘liberal’ satirist in Texas than it does to vote in Iraq, babe. I’ve had more death threats than you’ve had dental exams.

    3) Fuck the Iraqis. They owe us $280 billion. I’ll cut ‘em slack when they pay it.

    Or I’ll take a free tank of gas once a week for the next 7,000 years. Whatever.

    ==========

    Nalle: [re. Shark’s original post] “…He seems to think it’s bad to be enthusiastic about democracy in Iraq…”

    Let’s get something clear, Dave; I think it’s bad to write badly. That was ‘the point’ of my original post.

    You and your posse are a bad example for the children of America as well as those poor Iraqis; they’ll get the idea that this democracy and freedom of expression thing means that people are allowed to spew shitty semi-literate jingoisms without suffering the consequences.

    Your patriotic cliche is just chum for a shark.

    “Bring ‘em on!” — Bush

  • http://mysticwanderer.blogspot.com/ sapere aude

    Just because the Iraqis held an election, one should not presume that it is now a democracy… there are many players out there and Mr. President still worries about the Islamic presence as well as Iran. This could very well be the beginning of an Islamic Republic and not a U.S. democracy.

  • Eric Olsen

    actually, Jim brings up a good point that the masses don’t always make wise or temperate decisions, which is why we are a republic rather than a pure democracy in order to have a buffer against the inflamed masses

  • http://www.diablog.us Dave Nalle

    >>Let’s get something clear, Dave; I think it’s bad to write badly. That was ‘the point’ of my original post. < <

    Ah, but to not write what you want to hear is not to write badly.

    >>You and your posse< <

    I have a posse? Who are they, pray tell?

    >> are a bad example for the children of America as well as those poor Iraqis; they’ll get the idea that this democracy and freedom of expression thing means that people are allowed to spew shitty semi-literate jingoisms without suffering the consequences.<<

    Interesting. What are the consequences?

    Dave

  • Eric Olsen

    shark attack (“shark attack, shark attack/get out of the water, and don’t look back!”)

  • http://www.morethings.com/senate Al Barger

    Methinks the Shark gives himself just a BIT too much self-glorification: “It takes more bravery to be a Bush-hating ‘liberal’ satirist in Texas than it does to vote in Iraq, babe.”

    Riiiiiight. I know I’ve lost track of all the poor liberal satirists killed for mocking Bushitler.

    You’re puffing yourself up pretty big there for someone who likes to puncture supposed blowhards.

  • http://www.diablog.us Dave Nalle

    Is Shark still in Texas? I gathered from previous comments that he had fled to Canada. Heaven forfend he might be my neighbor!

    Dave

  • Shark

    Al, all I can say is Texas is a violent place for an intellectual.

    Dave: “What are the consequences?”

    Man, if ya gotta ask, I’m a failure.

  • Shark

    Dave, I’ll leave this state when they pry my cold dead fingers from a Shiner and a barbequed rib.

  • http://www.morethings.com/senate Al Barger

    Again Shark, I’ve missed the headlines about the slaughter of intellectuals in Texas. Delusions of heroism abound, Dr Blowhard.

    Also, perhaps you flatter yourself with delusions of grandeur to describe yourself as an “intellectual.” I’m sure you’re reasonably bright and all, but these petty blasts of minor derision you pen here do not require much application of sophisticated thinking.

    It doesn’t take a PhD wielding genius to just blast away with claims that everyone is stupid, cowardly and venal. Mere blanket misanthropy and nihilism do not constitute proof of Deep Thought.

  • http://adamantsun.blogspot.com Steve S

    I always thought the difference between Shark and well, for example, the three quotes he nominates in this post, was that Shark pretty much made clear when he does it, it’s satire, or extremism, he never tries to pass it off as regular dialog. Maybe that’s not the best way to put it, but you know what I mean? It’s a huge difference.

  • http://www.morethings.com/senate Al Barger

    How’s that a huge difference? Does saying that you’re a blowhard with nothing to say somehow make your words meaningful?

  • http://adamantsun.blogspot.com Steve S

    You define satire as ‘nothing to say’? I don’t think we can agree on this, because we define things differently.

    Ultimately, I think the topic of blowhardism is not really that important or anything to get that worked up over. But it’s worthy of pointing out.

  • HW Saxton

    Isn’t there a brand of Bubblegum called
    “Blow Hard” ? Just curious.

  • http://www.elitistpig.com Dave Nalle

    We haven’t slaughtered our intellectuals here in Texas, we’ve put them in a concentration camp called Austin and forced them to drink Shiner.

    As a long-time Austinite whose perspective is just a tiny bit more rational than average I sometimes see myself as one of the orderlies in an asylum for the criminally insane. Unfortunately the most delusional of the inmates seem to have made their way onto the City Council, onto various planning boards and into our seats in the state legislature.

    Of course, now that I’ve moved to a fortified compound just outside the city I can view it all with a somewhat more detached perspective. Now I only have to deal with the city government when their hideous mismanagement and unwillingness to take responsibility for anything dumps their problems in the laps of neighboring communities. But I can at least sit back laugh at the insider land deals and real estate scams that pass themselves off as ‘smart growth’ and ‘protecting our springs’ without having to pay for them.

    Dave

  • http://www.morethings.com/senate Al Barger

    Again, Shark, your delusions of grandeur with claims of “talent” that “contain multitudes” are pretty cheesy attached to something as insignificant as this article. The marginalized Sunni voter thing was mildly amusing, but would hardly be worth the click.

    The “containg multitudes” part strikes me as particularly delusional. Making cheap liberal fun of other people’s literary styles does not constitute much in the way of variety. Your stuff here is consistently exactly the same low level potshots and cheap nihilism every time. Everybody’s stupid, venal and can’t write- especially right wingers, except of course for the genius that is Shark.

    Your tactics increasingly strike me as cowardly. You don’t make any kind of serious argument to risk being refuted or criticized for. Indeed, you have explicitly and in so many words rejected reason and logic in the past, so you can hardly be expected to actually justify your catty mockery.

    Perhaps in some other context where “you” aren’t being “Shark” you might actually have something to say. You don’t here.

  • http://www.elitistpig.com Dave Nalle

    I think “containing multitudes” means he’s possessed – you know “My name is legion, for we are many”, etc.

    Dave

  • Shark

    Al, ‘Shark” is a character. He contains multitudes. Some days, he’s a right wing reactionary. Other days, he’s a left-wing anarchist. I never know what he’s going to say, but he’s always right.

    His goals are to enlighten through entertainment; to be provocative and yet profound. He makes fun of the Left almost as often as the Right. He’s a Cowboy Boddhisatva with Tourette’s Syndrome, fair and unbalanced.

    Another BIG difference is:

    He has talent.

    You don’t.

  • Shark

    “…Mr. Barger, who — as a recent Libertarian candidate for Senate — knows how to sympathize with the marginalized Sunni voters…”

    C’mon, Al, you gotta admit that was fucking hilarious.

  • Shark

    “…I’ve missed the headlines about the slaughter of intellectuals in Texas…”

    Well, it’s not as bad as it is for niggers

  • Shark

    Big Al: “Making cheap liberal fun of other people’s literary styles does not constitute much in the way of variety.”

    Funny. Of all the shots I’ve taken at your politics, it seems this one — aimed at your high school yearbook style writing — hurts the worst. Probably because it’s true.

    Sorry, babe.

    RE: “…you might actually have something to say.”

    The ultimate irony for someone who pens a piece about finding a use for Ted Kennedy … that’s “not dog food” — that says little more than that.

    Nalle: “containing multitudes” means he’s possessed…

    Ohh. You guys are killin’ me! A true battle of wits!

  • http://www.morethings.com/senate Al Barger

    Well, since we’re working in mutual literary criticism here, let me try to be more clear. In this column, as in most, you don’t really have a substantial criticism. You’re making mere cheap mockery, not any kind of real criticism. “Nah-nah, boo-boo, stick your head in doo-doo” doesn’t rise to the level of being satire, which about where you’re working here.

    As a counter-example, your most memorable piece at Blogcritics was a parody you did of Mac Diva. That was real satire. It took a little bit of thought to get into the specifics of just what made her writing cheesy.

    Go ahead Shark, nail me. Write an “Al Barger” parody post, taking apart specific deficiencies of my writing and thinking. Actually satirize me, rather than just minor meaningless snide jabs.

    I’m an easy target, come and get me. :)

    XOX

  • http://adamantsun.blogspot.com Steve S

    cliff notes version: “I’m still pissed you put me in third place. Try again, and this time, make it all about me”.

  • Shark

    Ayn Iversary!

    87 years ago today, on February 2, 1905 in St Petersburg, Russia, 13 year old Ayn Rand had her first period. This was a physical period, significant only because it was the first of millions of periods she would foist upon the literary world via her boring yet profound voluminous books that definitely make Libertarians hearts beat faster worldwide.

    As a young Jewish princess with an estrogen imbalance, young Ayn was lucky enough to have escaped straight up humiliation from her friends and family, since it was during the Communist Revolution and most folks had to straight up share tampons provided by the state in a socialistic experiment that was determined to keep the working classes on an equal par with each other when it came to hygienic devices.

    As it was, it was, and at wasn’t pretty, using hand-me-downs in such a manner.

    Then, as it was, as a young adult she was determined to escape the potential stains, odor, and discomfort of a menstrual outbreak in a communistic nation of poor people whose lack of individualistic traits caused them to have to stoop so low.

    After this incident, young Ayn was determined to come to America, since she’d heard rumors that Capitalism gave individuals the ability to be inventive — and produce a market of consumer goods where there were not only unused tampons available, but there were literally dozens of varieties to choose from!

    She wanted to immigrate — and she did it. In the sense of really appreciating the things that made America great, articulating and defending them, she may have been the greatest American ever. And never again did she have to use an old Belgium waffle to stifle her menstrual flow.

    Specifically, as opposed to unspecifically, she also wrote perhaps the greatest book of the 20th century, Atlas Shrugged. This and the preceding novel The Fountainhead did more intellectually than any one other person to cut the legs out from under all forms of collectivism and cheap altruism — (although later, Rand would offer part of her profits to provide wheelchairs and artificial limbs to the collectivism and cheap altruism she left unable to walk, run, or dance) — giving millions of young libertarian college students ample reasons to embrace selfishness, greed, and a heartless ambition. This was a great gift to those who wanted to avoid any guilt that might come from pursuing a blind self-interest that lacked any compassion whatsoever.

    This is not to say that she didn’t have some personal flaws or issues, nor to say that everything that ever came out of her mouth was automatically right. I’d give her about 87% on my scale of definitely having everything come out of one’s mouth be automatically right, but she definitely had some serious blindspots. Definitely.

    “Tis easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter the Kingdom of Heaven.” Being a staunch atheist however, I suspect she (the atheist, not me, as indicated by the “I” earlier) would not have appreciated that Biblical invocation — and since her philosophy was to encourage the turning of the wheel of Capitalism regardless of all its consequences — despite the fact that for some, it might be a wheel of torture — it was also convenient to profess to be an atheist, since a main tenet of most religions is to practice love and compassion for one’s fellow man, often, as with Christianity, to the point of giving up one’s earthly gains to provide for those less fortunate.

    For being so opposed to religion though, she struck a distinctly Biblical figure, in that she resembled an ancient, tattered, dog-eared book with hair, a short, stocky woman who, like the Bible, couldn’t be read with any certainty, especially as to her sexual masculinity, which could be argued as to whether it was literal or metaphorical.

    With her rough accent, and her hardline judgemental nature, she certainly had a Yahweh thing going on. And we all know what it means to have a Yaweh thing going on. Don’t we?

    The Fountainhead and Atlas Shrugged definitely work as old and new testaments. Definitely. Her world could be thought of as BBS and ALBH — Before Best-Seller and After Libertarians Beatified Her.

    The Fountainhead describes the fall of man through socialism, altruism, Nietzchean resentment, and other gigantic, almost meaningless abstract cliches that sound kinda cool, threatening, and slightly book reviewerish.

    Then John Galt comes along in Atlas Shrugged as the savior resurrecting the very soul of mankind. (The soul of mankind is saved by a railroad line into Colorado, which goes ahead despite the attempts to stop this ‘resurrection’ and an eternity in Heaven by Big Government and socialist sissies whose only goal in life is to stifle creative people who want to get rich by saving mankind with new innovative products like a really cool steel.)

    She had a lot of heart, and she fought harder and better than any other intellectual of the century. She is a truly historic figure, truly, and was more garrulous than a Don Rickles’ parrot on crack.

    Here’s hoping she’s enjoying Heaven, and was able to get there on tracks made of Reardon Metal.

    PS: Ayn Rand is #1 among the voices in my head, Shark being a close second. (Specifically, she sent me a message for this anniversary: it was a Tampex that fit on my computer keyboard. If you’re lucky, I’ll use it. Punk.)

  • Shark

    Disclaimer: No Authors or Libertarians Were Harmed While Making This Parody.

    Definitely.

  • http://www.elitistpig.com Dave Nalle

    >>Disclaimer: No Authors or Libertarians Were Harmed While Making This Parody.<<

    But a great deal of damage was done to both the spelling and grammar of the English language.

    In anycase, thanks for reminding me why I’m a Heinlein/Wilson/Vance loving Libertarian and not a wretched objectivist superman. Without the willingness of some men to sacrifice themselves for all men Liberty is unobtainable.

    Dave

  • http://www.kolehardfacts.blogspot.com Mike Kole

    Well, it’s a hell of an effort, but it leaves me wondering. After all, there are those who spin their wheels promoting something in the hopes that it gains adherents. This exercise? Well, it works hard to test the relative thickness of some hides. It may be a worthy satirical effort, but a worthy effort overall? I’ll vote no.

  • http://www.morethings.com/senate Al Barger

    Alright Shark, now that was a worthy attempt at satire, much better than the original “Breathless Blowhards” piece.

    I don’t know how many points you ultimately really score here – I’ll leave that judgment to others, but someone could actually get some idea of my style and certainly of what Ayn was about from your version. This would be somewhat akin to the idea I got of James Lipton from SNL years before I actually saw his actor’s studio show.

    You’re somewhere well below #2 on my voices in the head list, but you’re coming up the ranks some here. I appreciate the effort.

  • Shark

    Thanks, kids. It was done in about 10 minutes — in the spirit of love and affection.

    Al happened to mention MacDiva (or “she whose name must not be spoken” as I like to call her) — and I was reminded of a great Arab saying:

    “The enemy of my enemy is my friend.”

    — which warmed the cockles of my cold black heart for my many encounters with my associate, Al Barger, who btw, has been ever so kind and even-tempered during this meaningless exercise.

    And I’d prefer to let this thread die, because — thanks to Iraq — I’m kinda wanting to come over to the over side.

    Okay, well, maybe not that side, but I sure think that nowadays, it’s a helluva lot more fun to be a reactionary than to be a liberal. And less lonely, too.

    I’m really running outta gas on this liberal thing. When I write a post nowadays, I feel like a guy opening a Yarmulke Shop in downtown Berlin in 1933. When I satirize a conservative on Blogcritics, I feel like I’m performing a Bris ceremony in the Nuremberg town square.

    I’m tired of being a “liberal progressive.”

    Seriously.

    You guys have Bush. And the Bush bloodline — which apparently won’t run out within the next four or five generations. I fully expect the twins to take office right after Jeb and Neal get done with their second terms.

    …Meanwhile, we have Ted “not dog food, not yet at least” Kennedy. Or the friggin’ ‘meltdown’ man Howard Dean. Shit, we don’t even have Christopher Hitchens anymore — and we can’t appeal to the younger generation because they’d rather own stocks in Google than have an alternative to cardboard castles and dogfood dinners in their old age.

    Yall have Kid Rock and Ted Nugent.

    Shit, we have… what… Barbara Streisand… and she hasn’t made a decent album in decades…

    Yall have a real honest-to-god “we’re gonna kick yer ass for your own good” Foreign Policy — an Imperialist dream of conquering the world that has balls, smells of testosterone, and promises a happy ending.

    …We want everyone on the world playground to, as Al would say, “play nicey” — but our outlook is grim, and we don’t really see how cool it looks to walk with a swagger and carry a nice Big Stick. We wanna turn that cosmic war mace into toothpicks for the poor. That ain’t gonna sell.

    Yall have a grand plan to ‘get government out of people’s lives, including their kids (kill public schools), their old age (social security), the environment (“jobs before air and water!”) and their bankrupting illnesses (health care).

    …we have a vague plan to… well, I dunno the plan because — well, it’s vague.

    And finally, yall have God and His Word on your side — and the absolute conviction that you’re right and whoever disagrees is wrong. One shouldn’t tolerate the Fallen and the Sinful, and you can back it up every idea in every human realme (moral, legal, intellectual) with scripture — and justify anything based on a best-selling Book that nobody can argue with because,”hey, it says so right here.”

    …Meanwhile, we have dozens of competing paganistic, hedonistic ideas that are in agreement on only one issue: that everything is Relative — and one should be Tolerant of Others — especially their lifestyles.

    Your constituency is quoting the Bible on one hand, and playing “Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas” on the other.

    We can’t compete with that. All we have to offer is a seat at the Unitarian meeting — where you can join in on a touchy-feely of a pretty bad version of “We Are the World” accompanied by an acoustic guitar playing lesbian.

    We’re screwed and I know it.

  • JR

    Re: Comment 58 – Hilarious, but I get more Manning than Barger out of that. It really nailed that high school essay vibe, with the dangling clauses, the redundancies and the ham-handed vocabulary.

    There were some good Bargerisms in there; but I didn’t see “absolutely” used as an adverb, or “needs” followed by an infinitive, or the obligatory “Not to put too fine a point on it…” paragraph.

  • http://www.markiscranky.org Mark Saleski

    drum circles…don’t forget the drum circles!

  • Shark

    The Formal Declaration of Surrender is over here.

    Tell yer friends; it’s a “red letter day”!

  • http://www.antequeravillarental.com alienboy

    “Alienboy: Given the fact that democracy has been established in Iraq, can Mr Barger or Mr Nalle tell us when they will be addressing the lack of true democracy in the USA?

    Can you explain what you mean? The US isn’t a purely democratic system it’s a representative republic – thank god. Are you suggesting switching over to a plebiscite system? Or perhaps you’re still stuck on the ‘voter fraud’ myth from the last election? I thought even the die hard liberals had given that one up after conclusive proof started coming out that they were deluded.”

    mr nalle: bush doesn’t go around saying “representative republic” good, he says “democracy good”. so my question remains valid, despite your blustering.

    as to the rest of your “glibbery”

    “The electoral college is a quasi-federalist system and it’s already been reformed twice in the past 100 years. Isn’t that enough for you? Maybe you’d like to just shred the Constitution since it’s so inconvenient for your version of social anarchism.”

    Well, no. I don’t care how many times your constitution has been reformed. I simply pointed out the rich irony of a country lacking in democracy at home being so evangelical about it for others. is it so hard to see that?

    And i’m in favour of constitutions; the sooner we have one in europe the better…

    social anarchism? I don’t even see how that could work, let alone have a high degree of confidence as to what it formally means.

  • http://www.morethings.com/senate Al Barger

    Shark- So happy to kiss and make up. I feel your pain in comment #63. That’s some of your better writing. Perhaps me slapping you around a little here has inspired you to try harder. I suppose that’s kind of a right wing strategy. :)

    However, I do want to distance myself personally from much of your description of conservatives. For starters, I’m not a believing Christian, so that part definitely doesn’t apply.

    Also, I note again that I have never, ever voted for a member of the Bush family after about a dozen opportunities to do so.

    Moreover, I will freely admit to being a bit of a pussy. Granted, we probably have more guns per capita in this household than the Branch Davidians, and I wouldn’t be shy about shooting someone breaking in. However, I’ve never been in a bar fight, nor really any serious fisticuffs in adult life. I’m sure a lot of guys and probably some women could whip my ass.

    In other words, I don’t claim or derive any feelings of personal machismo from supporting a hawkish military policy. I’m no fighter, but I’m glad we have plenty of those who are.

    I just know that the Dali Lama and the Unitarians won’t do jack squat for US when there are jihadist dirtbags intent on murdering us by the bunches.

  • http://www.diablog.us Dave Nalle

    Alienboy: mr nalle: bush doesn’t go around saying “representative republic” good, he says “democracy good”. so my question remains valid, despite your blustering.

    Bush says ‘democracy’ is good because democracy is what everyone understands. Democracy, however, is merely a mechanism for gathering the consensus of the body politic. It is not a political system or a system of government. We HAVE limited democracy in the US. It’s one of the elements of our government. What really matters is that you have representative governmemt, and democracy is going to be one element of almost any representative government.

    When Bush says he wants democracy in Iraq what he is saying is that he wants Iraqis to have a voice in their government. That seems perfectly reasonable to me.

    Dave

  • http://www.resonation.ca Jim Carruthers

    Nalle, while saying democracy is “good”, that means the mean between “jack” and “shit” in actually implementing it at home and abroad.

    Do it, don’t talk about it. Start at home where you are ruled by a corporate autocracy. Then develop it in Pakistan where you harbour real nuclear terrorists.

    And then, when you accomplish that, kill yourself by eating your own shit. And if you survive, hey, bonus freedom day!

    Congrats, you win! you shit-eating motherfucker!

  • http://www.diablog.us Dave Nalle

    Carruthers, some of us are trying to have a discussion like sensible adults. Perhaps you need to consider whether you’re actually contributing anything worthwhile to that discussion.

    Dave