I promise to keep this Annie Dillard portion of the post as brief as possible: This weekend we went to our lake cottage — and new readers, lest you think this is insufferable second-house-dropping, let me tell you that our lake cottage is truly cottage-like, the size of a two-car garage and lacking even a shower — and…where was I? OK, we went to the lake. I took the kayak into the Puddle in search of the swan nest I found last week. Only the swans were off the nest, and next to them were two wee baby swans. Cygnets, they’re called.
I regret I didn’t get close enough for anything other than some highly pixelated photos of what the guidebooks call “threat posture,” but I did bring the binoculars, so I retreated a bit and watched them through those. I discovered why the cygnets seemed to be there and then not there — when they feel unsafe, they climb up on mom’s back, who holds her wings in arched position to hide them. Watching them scramble up there with their teeny black feet? God, it’s so cute makes your teeth hurt. Here are some much better pictures of the phenomenon than I could ever get.
Moving on…you might have to be a total blog nerd to get this, but I really liked the Poor Man’s Tech Central Station parody, especially the “director’s coke binge” line. But then, I really like the Poor Man, too.
I used to give Rush Limbaugh the benefit of the doubt, assuming all that blathering about how great he is is just the usual cover for the sort of deeply insecure, self-loathing, obese-on-the-inside jerk you find all over the radio business. I dunno, though — maybe he really is nuts:
You’re getting criticized for comparing the prison abuse in Iraq with a college prank. Were you misinterpreted?
I was totally misinterpreted and taken out of context. In a three-hour show, I would wager that two hours and 58 minutes were spent discussing the aspects of those photos that repulsed everybody, including me. The point I made was that this is not worth demeaning our entire war effort. And I think that these photos have been used as a political opportunity here by opponents and enemies of the President to discount the entire war in Iraq.
Maybe not nuts. Just high.
Finally, Wonkette takes on Michelle Malkin. And wins.
Lex said on June 1, 2004 at 10:35 am
They don’t call him Big Pharma for nothing.
Joe said on June 1, 2004 at 11:40 am
What did we do that was so terrible? We did’t kill or maime these prisoners. We should not have taken the pictures, but how do you get information from somebody who welcomes death? I suppose we could have sat down and served tea and cookies and asked nice. These are not nice people. and if they had there way womens rights would be set back 1000yrs.
Paul said on June 1, 2004 at 4:36 pm
Joe, TORTURE DOESN’T WORK. Real life isn’t “24.” There’s no Jack Bauer who can crack a case if only he can apply a little pressure. What we’re talking about went well beyond interrogation techniques that do work (see Mark Bowden’s article last year in The Atlantic for more) and into almost pure sadism.
Worse, of course, is the effect this has had on our international reputation. At some point, it’s possible we may, you know, need the rest of the world to help us to do something.
Nance said on June 1, 2004 at 7:32 pm
Well, yeah. If you really want to gauge the offensiveness of what our guys did, ask yourself this:
If those photos had featured American POWs standing naked in front of snarling dogs or stacked in a pyramid or on a leash or with undies on their heads appearing to give a blowjob to another soldier, would I be saying, “It’s no big deal. It’s not like they tortured anyone”?
Joe said on June 3, 2004 at 11:52 am
Let me ask you this. How did you feel when they cut the head off the guy on t.v.? IN the last gulf war I saw our pow’s beaten and paraded on t.v. As far as the international reputation, take a look around, most of the world hates us anyway. I guess Iam tired of always being the bad guy, until some body needs money or medical relief.
And sorry I do not like John Kerry, He claims he will make 10,000,000 jobs. My question is how? I have not heard one ceo of a company say that he will hire workers if Kerry is elected and not hire them if G W is elected. Yea we are loosing to many jobs overseas but a majority of the job loss is due to advance in technology. My Job, I can now do the work of 2 or 3 but the job has not gotten harder it is easyer.
This is still the best country on earth.