Nero's Fiddle
A View From The Handbasket

Friday, September 30, 2005
Once they get opposable thumbs, it's all over
Posted by neros_fiddle at 8:36 PM
Holy shit. Top secret military dolphins with "toxic dart guns" got turned loose by Katrina and are now freely roaming the sea looking for al Qaeda and harboring a massive grudge.

We should know better than to tamper in God's domain...

(Credit where due to the inspiration for the headline.)

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Comfort
Posted by neros_fiddle at 3:30 PM
It's Friday again. Moving through the ranks of our army of cats, here's Rosabelle. She's a fan of leisure.


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Thursday, September 29, 2005
Civics 101
Posted by neros_fiddle at 12:28 PM
More cluelessness.

Here's Karen Hughes smugly relating how she outsmarted some punk Egyptian:

I had one person at one lunch raise the issue of the President mentioning God in his speeches. And I asked whether he was aware that previous American presidents have also cited God, and that our Constitution cites "one nation under God." He said "well, never mind" and went on to something else. So he sort of was trying to equate that with the terrorists’ (inaudible). So I explained that I didn’t really think that was something you could equate. And he sort of dropped it and moved on. He was one of the opposition leaders in Egypt.

Which is all well and good, except for the minor detail that the Constitution, of course, doesn't contain the phrase "one nation under God."

Can we put the grown-ups back in charge, please?

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Heads in the sand
Posted by neros_fiddle at 9:06 AM
Here's an interesting thought experiment for a Thursday morning. Which is worse?

1. That the White House is lying to us.

2. That they really are this clueless.

Q Just very, very briefly, on Iraq, now the President in the long remarks that he made in the Rose Garden -- or you here have mentioned one of the most salient facts about the violence in Iraq: It's sectarian. It's Sunnis killing Shia. Why didn't the President talk about that? Many people think the country is on the verge of civil war. And what's the President's read on the sectarian nature of the violence in Iraq right now?

MR. McCLELLAN: It's terrorists killing Iraqis. It's terrorists attacking innocent civilians.

Q So you just don't recognize the sectarian nature of it?

MR. McCLELLAN: No. It's the terrorists that want to take Iraq into civil war. That's what their goal is. They want to bring chaos into this country. But the Iraqi people have shown them every step of the way that they are determined to build a free and democratic future. And that's why they've continued to move forward on the political process. And the President has said as they move forward on building a lasting democracy, the terrorists will continue to seek to carry out their violence and become more desperate. And we can expect that there will be more violence as the Iraqi people move forward on securing their freedom and democracy.


I'm going with 2).

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Wednesday, September 28, 2005
Consequences
Posted by neros_fiddle at 1:00 PM
As an addendum to the theme of failure without consequences at the White House, please note that Michael Brown is still on the payroll at FEMA.

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The Noble Mission
Posted by neros_fiddle at 12:27 PM
One of the most mind-boggling successes of the Bush White House (and most of those successes are PR-related) was how it neatly sidestepped the documented fact that none of its original rationales for the Iraq War turned out to be... true. WMD and al Qaeda links both turned up a big fat goose egg.

What was the cost to the administration for this colossal failure? Colin Powell? Allowed to retire with honor. Condi Rice? Promoted. Donald Rumsfeld? Still there. George Bush and Dick Cheney? Re-elected. The government got a big fat pass on this one. How did this happen? Somehow, Bush managed to convince the media and the people that WMD and al Qaeda didn't really matter -- we really went to war to build a democracy and be a good citizen of the world. And, while we were at it, lure in actual terrorists so we could kill them. Oh, and if you want to believe against all evidence that Iraq had something to do with 9/11, that's fine.

What was supposed to be an exercise in self-defense became a noble mission of mercy to save Iraq from Saddam.

A bait and switch of epic proportions.

Yeah, yeah, I hear you saying. That's all old news. Is there a point to this rant?

Yes. It seems to me that one reason why Bush was able to get away with this massive shell game was that no one really understands what war is all about. The *cost* of what we're doing doesn't register. Not money, though that's enormous. The moral cost -- to ourselves, to our soldiers, to our image in the world, to our credibility. There's a Hollywood vision of good ol' American troops bringing civilization to a backward, immoral, hopelessly crude people.

Which is why this is such an important story. (More here and here.)

If we, as a country, decide that we are going to scapegoat a country for a horrific crime and choose to invade them, there are moral costs. If we decide to try to make democracy flow from the barrel of a gun despite all historical evidence that you can't do that, there are moral costs.

One of those moral costs is turning many of your children into amoral monsters willing to use gruesome pictures of people they've killed (with added light-hearted captions) as currency to gain access to pornography. The moral cost is this:

The captions that accompany these images, which were apparently written by soldiers who posted them, laugh and gloat over the bodies. The person who posted a picture of a corpse lying in a pool of his own brains and entrails wrote, "What every Iraqi should look like." The photograph of a corpse whose jaw has apparently rotted away, leaving a gaping set of upper teeth, bears the caption "bad day for this dude." One person posted three photographs of corpses lying in the street and titled his collection "DIE HAJI DIE."

War is not a moral crusade. War is not an honorable solution to intractable diplomatic problems. War is not noble. War is a meat grinder that takes people and turns them into either shells or corpses.

Our troops have not failed us. We have failed our troops. We have spent our moral capital on a war without a solid foundation of necessity.

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Saturday, September 24, 2005
Faith-based education
Posted by neros_fiddle at 5:46 PM
There was a bit of a kerfluffle this past week about allowing organizations that apply religious tests in hiring to get federal Head Start money.

That doesn't seem outrageous at first blush. Surely a church can prefer to hire people of their own faith, right?

Well, then you see something like this:

A 14-year-old student was expelled from a Christian school because her parents are lesbians, the school's superintendent said in a letter.

Shay Clark was expelled from Ontario Christian School on Thursday.

"Your family does not meet the policies of admission," Superintendent Leonard Stob wrote to Tina Clark, the girl's biological mother.

Stob wrote that school policy requires that at least one parent may not engage in practices "immoral or inconsistent with a positive Christian life style, such as cohabitating without marriage or in a homosexual relationship," the Los Angeles Times reported in Friday's edition.


You think the same people trying to funnel Head Start federal dollars to "no Jews work here" church groups also want federal money to go to places like Ontario Christian School? Of course they do. This is all about winning the "culture war" by a flanking maneuver. The right has proven unable to inject their brand of Christianity into the public schools, so they're focusing their efforts on just getting the public schools' money, and getting us to pay for their "values-based" education that values things like homophobia.

Beware blurring the bright line of the Establishment clause.

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Friday, September 23, 2005
More babies! No, less!
Posted by neros_fiddle at 7:46 PM
Worried about a 1.9 fertility rate, France is opening its national wallet in an attempt at enticing more French couples to fill their homes with the pitter-patter of little pieds. Under this plan, a parent taking a year's unpaid leave to care for a third child will get $916 a month.

I found this passage interesting:

The European Union average is around 1.5, dropping to less than 1.3 in some countries, including Greece, Spain, Italy and the new EU member nations in Eastern Europe where fertility rates dropped precipitously after the collapse of communism.

I'm curious what the connection is between the fall of communism and the drop in the fertility rate. Evil western ideas about birth control? People finding things to live for beyond family? Less propaganda? Anyone have any info on this? The idea that totalitarianism increases the fertility rate is just counter-intuitive enough to appeal to me.

Meanwhile, over in India, the government is trying to keep the baby-making to a dull roar. Creating tiny humans in India, of course, is all about gender politics, with families generally desiring sons for economic and cultural reasons. So, they'll either abort female fetuses or, perhaps more commonly, keep pumping out girls until they get sons. This new initiative seeks to address the latter problem by giving away free education to single-child families with girls, blunting the economic disadvantages of daughters somewhat.

Maybe India and France should team up to pay French families to adopt Indian girls...

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What the hell do you want?
Posted by neros_fiddle at 5:46 PM
This week for Friday catblogging, here's Athena, complete with demonic glowing eyeballs.


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Thursday, September 22, 2005
Someone's going to get rich selling virtual inoculations on eBay...
Posted by neros_fiddle at 9:53 PM
It's all fun and games until people start dying of virtual blood plagues. A little viral menace in World Of Warcraft got out of control and started wiping out players left and right.

Just remember...



She might look good after the battle, but you don't know what ogres she's been with before you.

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Time enough for countin' when the dealing's done
Posted by neros_fiddle at 9:13 PM
Though I definitely have issues with George W. Bush (and I'd give you a long dissection of his speech to the Republican Jewish Coalition to illustrate why, if the Rude Pundit hadn't already done so in a way I couldn't hope to better), I'm certainly not of the opinion that the Democrats walk on water. If anything, it's their failure to be an effective opposition party that has enabled some of the worst sociopathic tendencies of the Administration.

David Mamet understands this. He likens the cautious timidity of the Democrats to a poker player who calls when the way to win is to raise:

John Kerry lost the 2004 election combating an indictment of his Vietnam War record. A decorated war hero muddled himself in merely "calling" the attacks of a man with, curiously, a vanishing record of military attendance. Even if the Democrats and Kerry had prevailed (that is, succeeded in nullifying the Republicans arguably absurd accusations), they would have been back only where they started before the accusations began.

Control of the initiative is control of the battle. In the alley, at the poker table or in politics. One must raise. The American public chose Bush over Kerry in 2004. How, the undecided electorate rightly wondered, could one believe that Kerry would stand up for America when he could not stand up to Bush? A possible response to the Swift boat veterans would have been: "I served. He didn't. I didn't bring up the subject, but, if all George Bush has to show for his time in the Guard is a scrap of paper with some doodling on it, I say the man was a deserter."

This would have been a raise. Here the initiative has been seized, and the opponent must now fume and bluster and scream unfair. In combat, in politics, in poker, there is no certainty; there is only likelihood, and the likelihood is that aggression will prevail.


Read the whole thing (and use Bugmenot to get access if you don't want to play the registration game). The man's got a point. But I'd expect the guy who wrote this to have something on the ball.

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Monday, September 19, 2005
Hearts and minds
Posted by neros_fiddle at 9:10 PM
What the hell is this?

British forces have rescued two UK servicemen who were arrested by Iraqi police in the southern city of Basra.

Official Iraqi sources say British tanks stormed the city's jail, but the Ministry of Defence says the men's release was negotiated.

Basra governor Mohammed al-Waili said it was a "barbaric act of aggression".


Apparently this sparked a free-for-all in which protestors hurled Molotov cocktails at British tanks.

Nice to see we're marching arm in arm toward democracy and freedom, etc., etc..

EDIT 9/20: Here's a good explanation of just what the Sam Hill is going on in Basra.

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Doctor's orders
Posted by neros_fiddle at 8:49 PM
If any of you enjoyed watching Tom Baker fight rubber monsters on PBS years ago, you may or may not be aware that the BBC is making new Doctor Who again. A full season has already aired, starring Christopher Eccleston as the Ninth Doctor (after the seven TV Doctors and Paul McGann in the ill-fated -- and some would say illness-inducing -- American TV movie).

For some reason, no one's broadcasting it in the US (though it is being shown in Canada), but it's readily available on BitTorrent and is very enjoyable if you're into that kind of thing. It got great ratings on the BBC, and will be back for a second (and some say third) season. However, Eccelston has left the show and will replaced by Tenth Doctor David Tennant:



If you have fond memories of Daleks threatening people with plungers and screeching, "Exterminate!", check it out.

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Lack of energy
Posted by neros_fiddle at 6:14 PM
I'm well into week two of 11-hour days at work, and six of them a week. So my blogging prowess is wilted. Much apologizings.

In the meantime, here's some cheery news from CNN:



It's going to be a long winter. The heat pump in our house barely keeps up when it goes below freezing, but looking at those NG prices, I'll count my blessings. Of course, electric will go up along with everything else, but a lot of electric generation around here is coal, which buffers us somewhat.

By the way, our buddy James Howard Kunstler, who I mentioned below, is pegging this winter as the onset of what I've called Scenario 5 - Complete Apocalypse. He says we won't recognize civilization in seven months. So let's get back together in March and see how we're doing. (Of course, if the Internet no longer exists, or I can't afford to access it, that'll pretty much answer that question by default.)

Light and fluffy chaser post promised soonish.

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Friday, September 16, 2005
If you don't go shopping, the hurricane wins
Posted by neros_fiddle at 10:18 PM
US consumer confidence sinks to sub-9/11 levels.

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Two can play the blame game
Posted by neros_fiddle at 9:53 PM
Rounding out our Katrina stories, there's a new White House strategy for recovering from the PR disaster (which it had previously dismissed as a "blame game"): Blame the tree-huggers!

JACKSON, Miss., Sept. 16 (UPI) -- Federal officials are searching for evidence that environmental groups might be to blame for flooding in New Orleans, the Mississippi Clarion-Ledger reports.

The newspaper said it obtained a copy of an internal e-mail sent out this week by the U.S. Department of Justice, asking U.S. attorneys whether their offices had evidence of lawsuits brought by environmentalists that might have interfered with U.S. Army Corps of Engineers projects involving levees.

"Has your district defended any cases on behalf of the Army Corps of Engineers against claims brought by environmental groups seeking to block or otherwise impede the Corps work on the levees protecting New Orleans?" the memo said. "If so, please describe the case and the outcome of the litigation."


As amusing as the above flailing about may be, all this brouhaha about the levees is sort of a red herring. The levees might have been able to hold against a Category 3 hurricane or a weak, fast-moving 4, but I suspect Katrina would have swamped New Orleans even if the levee improvements Bush cut had been carried out.

That doesn't excuse Bush for cutting the funding (if Katrina had been a Category 3, it could have made a big difference), but it does make one wonder if an eco-witch hunt is the most profitable use of federal dollars at the moment.

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Potemkin on the Mississippi
Posted by neros_fiddle at 9:38 PM
Another postscript to last night's speech:

I am duty-bound to report the talk of the New Orleans warehouse district last night: there was rejoicing (well, there would have been without the curfew, but the few people I saw on the streets were excited) when the power came back on for blocks on end. Kevin Tibbles was positively jubilant on the live update edition of Nightly News that we fed to the West Coast. The mini-mart, long ago cleaned out by looters, was nonetheless bathed in light, including the empty, roped-off gas pumps. The motorcade route through the district was partially lit no more than 30 minutes before POTUS drove through. And yet last night, no more than an hour after the President departed, the lights went out. The entire area was plunged into total darkness again, to audible groans. It's enough to make some of the folks here who witnessed it... jump to certain conclusions.

To tie this to the post below, I'm sure Bush is glad to know that the power is back on.

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"It's the only connection they feel."
Posted by neros_fiddle at 8:28 PM
From Bush's speech last night:

As all of us saw on television, there is also some deep, persistent poverty in this region as well. And that poverty has roots in a history of racial discrimination, which cut off generations from the opportunity of America.

Because poverty and racism don't exist unless you see them on television. (Apparently, Bush didn't "get" the extent of the problem on the Gulf Coast until his staff made a DVD of news coverage for him.) And hey, as Bush's mother pointed out, the poor folks are better off now -- living high on the government hog in shelters. So she's resting easy about the problem.

It seems that the continuing narrative of the Bush administration is: "I had no idea." They thought the oceans protected us from terrorists. They didn't know terrorists would use planes as missiles. They didn't know there would be resistance in Iraq. They were shocked that there were no WMD. They didn't know about the abuses at Abu Ghraib and Gitmo. They couldn't conceive of an Iraqi constitution that would replace civil rights with fundamentalist Islam. No one could have anticipated the breach of the levees.

It's too bad that Know-Nothing Party has already been used -- it would be a fine description of the current administration.

For a useful timeline of the disaster and the response, check out Salon.

Finally, it goes without saying that whatever you can cough up for the Red Cross or the charity of your choice would be appreciated.

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Thursday, September 15, 2005
Bliss
Posted by neros_fiddle at 6:19 PM
It has come to my attention that there is a tradition amongst bloggers of posting pictures of their pets on Friday. I am, of course, eager to leap on any passing bandwagon (at least once).

Since the below "Bush gotta pee" pic is stale and moldy by blog standards (almost 24 hours!), I'll try to balance it out by posting my cat picture early.

I present Griz:


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A man's gotta do what a man's gotta do.
Posted by neros_fiddle at 5:38 PM
After a long and serious post, I need a chaser. How about this?



The leader of the free world asks Condi Rice for a potty break. You can't make this stuff up.

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Overly long thoughts on peak oil: from Pollyanna to Cassandra
Posted by neros_fiddle at 5:25 PM
Peak oil is simultaneously the most important and least covered issue out there today. The basic idea is that oil production follows something like a bell curve -- it increases until all the "easy" oil is gone, extracting it more gets steadily more difficult and production inexorably drops. The shift from increasing to decreasing production is the peak. This has already happened in America, and those who know more about it than me suggest it will happen globally soon.

However, demand continues to increase, as energy demand knows nothing and cares less about supply. The global population grows. More and more products are developed that use petroleum (plastics, primarily). Agriculture uses more and more petroleum-based pesticides to maintain crop yields. Literally billions of Chinese and Indians are aspiring, and ever more able, to own and drive cars. A burgeoning fleet of planes and ships ferry around the products of the global economy. People live farther and farther away from work, driving in some cases hours back and forth every day, primarily to buy larger houses that require more heating and cooling.

Economics 101 tells us that growing demand and shrinking supply gives us high prices and scarcity. So what happens when there's not enough oil to go around?

There's very little agreement about this. Theories can be broken down roughly along these lines:

1. There's no problem. Oil is infinite. The Economist ran a piece arguing this viewpoint a while ago entitled "The Bottomless Beer Mug." (It's pay-only on their site, so no link.) An interesting sidebar to this is the concept that oil's origin is abiogenetic -- it's not dead dinosaurs but somehow manufactured by the earth.

While reassuring, I'm not sure how realistic an attitude this is.

2. Oil isn't going to peak for decades. Don't worry. This is more of a way of avoiding the problem than solving it. Even if you grant the premise, doesn't it make more sense to fix things now instead of waiting for a cataclysm?

The obvious answer to that is that there currently isn't a financial incentive to solve the problem, as oil is still the best source of energy available. But never fear...

3. The peak's coming, but the free market will fix it. This theory posits that as oil gets more expensive, two things will happen.

First, previously impractical sources of oil such as the Canadian tar sands will become profitable, maintaining an expensive but steady supply. If it costs, say, $30 a barrel to get oil out of the tar sands, and oil sells for $20 a barrel, then no one's going to try to get that oil. But if oil's selling for $60, then there will be a gold rush.

There's another factor there, however -- the oil is more expensive to get to, partly because it requires more energy to get to. With many of the "hard to get" sources of oil, you actually have to use more than one barrel of oil to retrieve a barrel of oil. So it's extremely inefficient. This isn't a realistic way to continue dependence on oil, though it may be useful as a way to get oil for "legacy" requirements that can't be converted to other forms. But that would require a non-oil method of expending the energy to get the oil. Which leads us to...

In the second prong of the market-based attack on peak oil, the floodgates will open to alternative energy sources -- biodiesel, hydrogen, solar, wind, fusion, gerbils -- which will pick up the slack. The problem here is that none of these (except perhaps fission, but you can't drive a car with fission) are viable (yet) on a large scale. They may well be someday, but it's like the old Far Side cartoon with a fiendishly complex equation on a chalkboard and a scientist pointing to one spot and saying, "Here, a miracle happens." This "solution" is largely dependent on faith in human ingenuity. That's not a bad thing to bet on, but it's still a gamble.

4. Life is going to change hugely to adapt. This seems to me to be the most logical outcome. A magic bullet that "replaces oil" isn't likely because oil is such a good carrier of energy. The ultimate answer will have to be a combination of different energy sources and signifcantly less consumption. There are many ways this could happen, and I'll talk about some of them down the road. It will be a painful transition, but short of...

5. Complete apocalypse. This is a favorite of lots of conspiracy theorists and professional doomsayers. A good example of the latter is James Howard Kunstler, who predicted mass carnage surrounding Y2K before moving on, disappointed, to Peak Oil. In this future, millions freeze for lack of heat, starve for lack of food, and die in global wars fought over the last scraps of oil. People grow a few scrawny vegetables in the backyard and fight off roving hordes with shotguns. The global economy collapses. (Then, after a few decades of this, a blissful agrarian utopia emerges, with hardy folk living off the land and singing songs around the campfire.) It seems to me that folks like Kunstler hate modern civilization so much that for them massive death, war, famine, disease and suffering would be preferable to another season of "Big Brother," and Peak Oil is the latest pale horse they've hitched their wagon to.

That doesn't mean they're automatically wrong -- betting against man's baser instincts is as much a sucker's bet as betting against our ingenuity.

At the end of the day, though, I'd rather bet on ingenuity than colossal failure, as much out of refusal to despair as anything else. But we'd better get used to the idea that expensive energy is here to stay, not just an aberration that will soon go away. When the peak happens is immaterial, the fact that it will happen is reason enough to do something about it.

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Housekeeping Note
Posted by neros_fiddle at 10:33 AM
Thanks for stopping by.

I've set the comments to allow anonymous posts, but with the "word verification" gizmo turned on. I hope this won't be too annoying -- I didn't want to force people to create an account just to post a comment, but didn't feel like fighting endless comment spambots (I've already had two).

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Wednesday, September 14, 2005
We Are The Champions
Posted by neros_fiddle at 6:53 PM
For the moment, at least, the Massachusetts Constitution rests easy, unthreatened by an anti-gay marriage amendement.

Here's my favorite quote from the article:

"Gay marriage has begun, and life has not changed for the citizens of the commonwealth, with the exception of those who can now marry," said state senator Brian Lees, a Republican who had been a cosponsor of the amendment. "This amendment, which was an appropriate measure or compromise a year ago, is no longer, I feel, a compromise today."

At the risk of appearing ungrateful for this rare bit of good news, I must respond:

Duh.

Is it really surprising that the immoral hellscape of public anal sex, child sacrifice, pissing on Bibles and beating of nuns foreseen by gay marriage opponents has failed to appear in Massachusetts? Freed from the clutches of irrational fear by inarguable reality, Lees realizes he's been a fool. He's smarter than Governor Gropinator, at least. Good for him.

And good for Massachusetts. One down, 49 to go.

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I'm Pandora. Fly me.
Posted by neros_fiddle at 6:03 PM
Four of the seven largest US airlines are now bankrupt.

While there are certainly other factors at work (deregulation not the least of which), everyone agrees that $70/barrel oil is not making life any easier for carriers. I'll have a lot more to say about oil in the coming days, but it's safe to say that the airline industry will have company in Darwin's Waiting Room before long.

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Locate Bible. Commence thumping.
Posted by neros_fiddle at 5:48 PM
After getting thrown out of the Supreme Court on a technicality, Michael Newdow is back and appears headed for another showdown in a SCOTUS whose makeup is anyone's guess.

On the one hand, this is a lovely distraction from issues of actual importance. On the other, it's a handy bellwether for the appetite of the nation for theocracy. Expect the usual "Christian nation" suspects to come out in full throat, even more so since their favorite President currently enjoys dismal poll numbers. A substantial number of Americans sincerely want Biblical rule, and we'll likely hear from most of them on this issue.

For students of irony, however, the prospect of right-wing Christian dominionists rushing to the defense of a loyalty oath originally written by a socialist is always a cheerful sight. Plus, there's sure to be much waxing nostalgic for the non-existent good old days when everyone in America was a fundamentalist, when in fact "under God" has only been in the Pledge since 1954.

This may be the case that launches a thousand attack ads in 2006.

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Fiscal Responsibility
Posted by neros_fiddle at 1:09 PM
It seems that Tom DeLay has poked his head out from his anti-indictment bunker long enough to issue a declaration of victory in the war on excessive federal spending.

This comes as a surprise to those of us who know that federal spending is significantly higher now than it was five years ago, but I suppose that's what they mean by not being in the reality-based community.

With the looming battle over estate taxes and making Bush's tax cuts permanent, one has to wonder what impact the DeLay pronouncement will have. If federal spending is, as he says, cut as much as it can be, then how will tax cuts impact the deficit, which was $50 billion in August alone? Will DeLay come out in favor of raising taxes?

And yet the Republicans can successfully campaign as the "small government" party. Funny old world.

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Monday, September 12, 2005
So what's all this, then?
Posted by neros_fiddle at 4:16 PM
A blog is an act of hubris. The author implicitly assumes that someone cares enough to read it, and further assumes that reading it is worth the reader's time. Thanks for the first, and I beg your patience with the second. I intend to get better at this with practice.

This particular presumption is called Nero's Fiddle. I could expound on why it's called that, but in truth it's mostly because no one at Blogspot had used that name yet. I'll be getting to the bullshit soon enough, so there's no reason to start shoveling quite yet.

I intend to cover a lot of political ground, centering around the big trends of where the United States is going (and with a name like Nero's Fiddle, you can imagine it's not a happy place) in the context of things like nationalism, dominionism and energy (including peak oil). Expect plenty of gratuitous cheap shots, as well.

A steady diet of that would be tiresome and depressing (no matter how often the Pentagon tries to cheer us up with tightly guarded Clint Black concerts), so other topics should crop up as well, such as technology and pop culture (whether it inspires admiration or slack-jawed goggling).

It's often said that life about the journey, not the destination. This blog is about the journey. Obviously, I have no idea where we're going. While I'm not an optimistic person by nature, I'd like to think that somewhere in the hubris required to start this project, there's a glimmer of hope.

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Tuning up
Posted by neros_fiddle at 9:51 AM
The fiddle has been in storage for a while...

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