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Thranduil Oropherion Redux

Sometimes someone says something that just requires a new thread. Our good friend Rush Limbaugh has come through while speaking of the Democrats and the healthcare bill:

"If they get this, remember I called them political suicide bombers. They're strapping the bombs on the bombs of these health care bills. They're gonna get, with this bill if it's signed into law, they're gonna get their 72 virgins. They're gonna get a lifetime supply of Viagra or Cialis, their choice, and they're not gonna die. They're gonna get the 72 virgins in their offices, or in a capitol wading pool, or wherever they want them."

Golly, Rush, that ought to encourage some of them to vote for the bill, don't you think?

11/24/2009 #1
hixto

Limbaugh just says whatever he thinks will get a rise out of someone. IIRC his rants used to at least have some semblance of coherence though.

11/24/2009 #2
Thranduil Oropherion Redux

Sex in the wading pools? I really need to read that bill. I wonder whose amendment that was? ;P

11/24/2009 #3
Morthoron

Golly, Rush, that ought to encourage some of them to vote for the bill, don't you think?

Rush is irrelevant to the healthcare issue, particularly since he can well afford to abuse his prescription medication, without or without healthcare reform. Pop another few, Rush!

11/24/2009 #4
Nieriel Raina

Nice, Rush. Really great way to look like the idiot you are.

11/24/2009 #5
Thranduil Oropherion Redux

I think Rush got his Viagra mixed up with his Oxycontin when he said this.

11/24/2009 #6
Reader's Corner

Crosss posting :

It's a plot that could be straight out of the bluff-and-double-bluff worlds created by John le Carre and Frederick Forsyth. Only, it seems to have played out in real life, to the tragic misfortune of hundreds of innocent people. The tantalising possibility that David Coleman Headley may have been a US undercover agent who turned rogue is vexing many here as American authorities keep the US-based Lashkar jihadi out of the reach of Indian investigators.

To make the tale even more dramatic, Headley may just have provided American intelligence agencies information that prevented a Lashkar attack on Mumbai in September. The theory -- and it's still a theory -- is that Headley was used to infiltrate the Lashkar, but gradually went astray under the influence of the very terrorists he was supposed to be spying upon. Torn between conflicting loyalties, he may have continued to give information to his American handlers, and a tip-off by him may even have helped avert a Laskar attack orginally planned for September. But he seems to have commited fully to Lashkar shortly after that, which could be one reason why American agencies were caught napping by 26/11. During his interactions in India, Headley frequently introduced himself as a CIA agent. But suspicions that he's a rogue agent stem more from the just-released information that Headley, a man with one green and one brown eye, could straddle America and Pakistan with ease despite a run-in with the law in the US. A recent profile in the New York Times said that in 1998, Headley (then known as Daood Gilani) was convicted of conspiring to smuggle heroin into US from Pakistan. ``Court records show that after his arrest, he provided so much information about his own involvement with drug trafficking which stretched back more than a decade and about his Pakistani suppliers that he was sentenced to less than two years in jail and later went to Pakistan to conduct undercover surveillance operations for the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA)," the NYT report said. This suggests that Headley had a deal with authorities in the US who allowed him to get away with mild punishment in exchange for a promise of cooperation. To many here, that also implies that he was a known entity to the counter-terror and drug enforcement authorities in the US. After 9/11, the walls between these agencies had come down because of the links between drugs and terrorism, particularly in the context of Pakistan-Afghanistan where there is a huge overlap between the functions of the DEA and CIA. Surprisingly, the FBI affidavit against Headley doesn't mention his tryst with the DEA. FBI's affidavit against Headley says that he changed his name from Daood Gilani to David Coleman Headley in 2006 to hide his history as an offender. As he told border police in August 2009, it was to give himself the freedom to travel undetected -- he said the new name aroused much less suspicion when he travelled. It is a fact that terrorists are masking their religious identity to get past the counter-terror surveillance, with terror groups seeking to recruit Caucasians for fresh strikes. But many doubt here that the mere switching of names could have worked in Headley's case given his brush with law but more because of the destinations he was flying to. Given Pakistan's unquestioned reputation as the hub of global terror, people travelling to and from the country automatically pop up on the scanner at airports across the globe. Headley, to boot, would often meet his contacts in UAE -- a known rezendevous for terrorists and smugglers and a place that is of immense interest to law enforcement agencies. The doubters found it intriguing that ultra-sensitive agencies in the US did not find anything amiss about the entries on Headley's US passport. While the sceptics don't think they have an answer yet, they are inclined to look at the possibility of Headley being an undercover agent who, torn between the competing demands of the jihadi outfits he had been asked to infiltrate and his American handlers, went astray. Headley, by his own confession, joined Lashkar-e-Taiba in 2006 and received training in one of the terror camps run by the jihadi outfit. Those who subscribe to the "rogue agent" theory are inclined to believe that this was known to the Americans, always anxious to ferret out information from hard-to-penetrate terror groups. They also feel that US agencies were perhaps aware that last year, Headley was in India to recce targets for a Lashkar attack that it had originally planned for September -- as confirmed by Ajbal Kasab in his testimony -- and which was finally carried out on 26/11. Rather, they also suspect that Headley might have been the source of information that helped Americans warn of the attack planned for September last year. In their warning, which was passed on to Maharashtra government by Intelligence Bureau, the Americans had said that prominent installations in Mumbai were on the jihadis' target. As a matter of fact, the FBI alert made a specific mention of Taj and other hotels -- Marriott, Land's End and Sea Rock. It is felt that Headley's defection happened immediately afterwards and that is perhaps one of the reasons why Americans could not, unlike in September, sniff 26/11. The suspicion is reinforced by the fact that it was around this time that FBI put Headley under its surveillance, leading to his arrest on October 3 this year. Suspicions are getting stronger as Americans delay giving Indian investigators access to Headley. The hope here is that Indian agencies would get their turn to talk to the terrorist after charges -- indictment in the American lexicon -- are framed against him on Jauuary 1. There is also the possibility that Headley has promised to sing on the condition that he is not exposed to interrogators from India. But during interactions on the issue, FBI has been unusually cagey about discussing Headley in detail -- odd on the part of the agency which swiftly warned of the attack Lashkar had planned in September and without whose help the breakthrough in the 26/11 probe would not have happened.

12/17/2009 . Edited 12/18/2009 #7
Thranduil Oropherion Redux

WTF? is right!

Many people in the US don't trust the CIA, given its history.

12/18/2009 #8
Reader's Corner

CIA might have enrolled Hadley but, I'm more concerned about laxity of Indian agencies and our media.

When Mumbai was under attack the reporters were at every site with their cameras- braodcasting all the actions of our commandos/police live!! All terrorists had to do was to switch on the TV and see where to shoot.

Next- Police had traced that emails had come from Headley's computer when he was still in Mumbai. But, he had a Christian name and was a US citizen and being only half Pakistani he had white skin- The same media made a hue and cry how the police was harassing a poor white American businessman trying to investigate him for terrorism. Headley claimed that he was hacked and we had long news reports on how the wireless internet connection can be hacked and the terrorists must have used his IP just to save their now skin...

Headleyleft India acting all disgusted with the whole affair returned to ndia after some time and then left again--this time FBI arrested him at the airport... I wonder if they would have done so because the foreigners were targetted.

Someone can write a good thriller story about the whole affair.

12/18/2009 . Edited 12/18/2009 #9
Nieriel Raina

Not sure where to put this, but this was definitely a WTF? moment. This cop needs a serious attitude adjustment!

12/20/2009 #10
Thranduil Oropherion Redux

Not sure where to put this, but this was definitely a WTF? moment. This cop needs a serious attitude adjustment!

Illustration of why it's a bad idea to mess around with people who have guns and high-stress jobs. In the cop's defense, it IS Washington DC and you never know if the next snowball coming from that large crowd is going to have a rock in it. We northerners know it's okay to pelt each other with snowballs, but not to aim at cars.

12/20/2009 #11
hixto

I don't know if anyone knows who the actress Brittany Murphy is, but she seems to have died today. She was 32.

12/20/2009 #12
Aislynn Crowdaughter

We northerners know it's okay to pelt each other with snowballs, but not to aim at cars.

Hu? Aiming at cars is worse than aiming at people? O_O

In any case, we do not see how the whole situation started on the video. But then, drawing a gun when people do not have obvious weapons of their own seems extreme to me in any case. -_______-

12/20/2009 #13
hixto

Hu? Aiming at cars is worse than aiming at people? O_O

Aiming at cars can cause the driver to be distracted thus increasing the chance of injury to one more people.

One shouldn't aim anything with a rock in it at people either, of course.

12/20/2009 #14
Thranduil Oropherion Redux

Hu? Aiming at cars is worse than aiming at people? O_O

Actually, yes. If you hit a moving car with a snowball you can cause it to go out of control, with dire results in an urban area like that. Little Wisconsin kids get in big BIG trouble for doing that.

12/20/2009 #15
Aislynn Crowdaughter

One shouldn't aim anything with a rock in it at people either, of course.

That's what I meant...

Actually, yes. If you hit a moving car with a snowball you can cause it to go out of control, with dire results in an urban area like that. Little Wisconsin kids get in big BIG trouble for doing that.

Ah, you mean *moving* cars! That explains it! ;)

12/20/2009 #16
Thranduil Oropherion Redux

Ah, you mean *moving* cars! That explains it! ;)

I would also get rather cranky if I had a nice car that got stuck in an intersection in a snowstorm and then a crowd pelted it with snowballs. Those things can crack windshields, cause dents, and knock off side mirrors.

12/20/2009 #17
Nieriel Raina

Cranky? Pissed off? Sure, that's understandable. But this guy drew his gun and did not identify himself as a cop right away. He made quite the fool of himself IMO. The other officers handled it much better, I think. They remained calm and did their job in a professional manner.

12/21/2009 #18
Thranduil Oropherion Redux

Cranky? Pissed off? Sure, that's understandable. But this guy drew his gun and did not identify himself as a cop right away. He made quite the fool of himself IMO.

As usual, I had trouble with the video -- it stopped and started, even when I tried to replay it, so I gave up and had to rely on the print article. He didn't look like a cop -- just a pissed off motorist. And if you're a cop with a gun, you had better identify yourself right away.

I think one of the people commenting had it right -- he was ticked because they'd hit his pretty Hummer.

12/21/2009 #19
Nieriel Raina

I think one of the people commenting had it right -- he was ticked because they'd hit his pretty Hummer.

Probably.

12/22/2009 #20
Thranduil Oropherion Redux

This is big. It potentially affects the course of elections and legislation from now on. And this is the only place I could find it?

1/21/2010 #21
Morthoron

This is big. It potentially affects the course of elections and legislation from now on. And this is the only place I could find it?

I agree with Justice Stevens' dissenting view. 'Corporations are not human beings', and as we have seen more and more, large corporations are not necessarily American either, or their agenda may be in the best interests of the corporation, but not the American people -- perhaps not even for Americans who work for them. In addition, they have huge advertising budgets, and immediately put voters and blocs of voters at a spending disadvantage. This is just a terrible decision. This comes on the heels of another dreadful Supreme Court decision, which allowed the locks in Illinois to remain open, and allow Asian carp to invade the Great Lakes and destroy the whole ecosystem. I think the Supreme Court has somehow caught the insanity that pervades Congress and the Senate. Washington has lost its collective mind.

1/21/2010 #22
Nieriel Raina

Washington has lost its collective mind.

Agreed.

1/21/2010 #23
Virtuella

:( I thought things were supposed to get better under Obama...

1/21/2010 #24
Olorime

:( I thought things were supposed to get better under Obama

We all thought so. I personally lost all my faith in him when he appointed Immanuel as his Chief of Staff. :(

1/22/2010 #25
Gwenneth Tinuiel

Ok, someone care to explain what this means to a half-asleep young mind?

1/22/2010 #26
Thranduil Oropherion Redux

Ok, someone care to explain what this means to a half-asleep young mind?

It means that, thanks to a SCOTUS decision involving rights of 'free speech', corporations (which are considered under the law to be 'individuals') will now have the right to spend unlimited amounts of money on political campaigns, backing certain candidates, who will then be beholden to them. Obviously, a corporation usually has far more money to spend than any private individual.

We've already seen what that means with Joe Lieberman, who was pretty much owned by the health insurance industry -- and that was with the limits. With Congressman and even the President put in office to serve moneyed interests we will see bills blocked that harm those interests. It will affect tax policy. They could possibly amend the Constitution -- and who will stop them? Because the state legislatures that need to ratify will be bought and paid for too.

This is obviously a worst case scenario, but it is not a good development.

Edit: In Keith's own words:

(has links to the special comment videos on Youtube)

1/22/2010 . Edited 1/22/2010 #27
Thranduil Oropherion Redux

:( I thought things were supposed to get better under Obama...

Anyone who seriously believed that was deluded. He has failed to honor several campaign promises -- ending the secrecy surrounding GITMO, rescinding 'don't ask, don't tell' -- and he has managed to squander that super majority in the Senate. Which we now no longer have.

I still think he was preferable to his opponent. The economy is in better shape than it would otherwise have been, probably due to increased confidence and nothing more. But, as I feared, he's shaping up to be a second Carter, and that will end up putting Republicans in the White House for another eight years or more.

Edit: That said, this current issue had nothing to do with Obama. It was a Supreme Court decision decided by mostly Republican appointees.

1/22/2010 . Edited 1/22/2010 #28
Thranduil Oropherion Redux

This is just a terrible decision. This comes on the heels of another dreadful Supreme Court decision, which allowed the locks in Illinois to remain open, and allow Asian carp to invade the Great Lakes and destroy the whole ecosystem. I think the Supreme Court has somehow caught the insanity that pervades Congress and the Senate. Washington has lost its collective mind.

Interestingly, my news page, Yahoo, hasn't even mentioned this. I really had to search for internet coverage. I would not have known anything was amiss if we hadn't had MSNBC on.

Technically, SCOTUS doesn't have to worry about the impact of its decisions -- just decide how the Constitution and case law apply. And Constitutional freedoms will often lead to some pretty unpopular results -- take the American Nazi aerty marching in Skokie, for example. But one of the experts on Constitutional law last night said that the five justices had ignored the case law and precedent.

I have an idea -- the only way to fix this. Don't listen to the ads. Next election, when you see some candidate standing in a cornfield with his hair blowing photogenically and Old Glory waving in the background, you'll know that some big money company wants you to vote for him so they can loot your pockets. Go on the internet (if it still exists uncensored) and check out his position papers. Actually, scratch that -- Leiberman did a complete turnaround from his stated positions. Just vote for the other guy, the one who has no TV spots running. :(

1/22/2010 #29
Olorime

I always do. I vote for either Ralph Nader or Ron Paul. Polar opposites, but at least clean polar opposites

1/22/2010 #30
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