micah holmquist's irregular thoughts and links

Welcome to the musings and notes of a Cadillac, Michigan based writer named Micah Holmquist, who is bothered by his own sarcasm.

Please send him email at micahth@chartermi.net.

Holmquist's full archives are listed here.

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Sites Holmquist trys, and often fails, to go no more than a couple of days without visiting (some of which Holmquist regularly swipes links from without attribution)

Aljazeera.Net English
AlterNet (War on Iraq)
Alternative Press Review
Always Low Prices -- Always
Another Irani online
antiwar.com (blog)
Asia Times Online
Axis of Logic
Baghdad Burning (riverbend)
BBC News
blogdex.net ("track this weblog")
The Christian Science Monitor (Daily Update)
Common Dreams
Daily Rotten
Democracy Now
The Drudge Report
Eat the Press (Harry Shearer, The Huffington Post)
Empire Notes (Rahul Mahajan)
frontpagemag.com (HorowitzWatch)
Guardian Unlimited
The Independent
Information Clearing House
Informed Comment (Juan Cole)
Iranians for Peace

Iraq Dispatches (Dahr Jamail)
Iraqi Democrats Against Occupation
Iraq Occupation and Resistance Report (Psychoanalysts for Peace and Justice)
Mr. Show and Other Comedy
The Narco News Bulletin (blog)
The New York Times
Occupation Watch
Political Theory Daily Review
Press Action
Project Syndicate
Raed in the Middle (Raed Jarrar)
The Simpsons Archive
Simpsons Collector Sector
Technorati ("search for mth.blogspot.com")
United States Central Command
U.S. Embassy Baghdad, Iraq
War Report (Project on Defense Alternatives)
The Washington Post
Wildfire (Jo Wilding)
wood s lot
www.mnftiu.cc (David Rees)

Blogs that for one reason or another Holmquist would like to read on at least something of a regular basis (always in development)

Thivai Abhor
As'ad AbuKhalil
Ken Adrian
Christopher Allbritton
Douglas Anders
Mark W. Anderson
Aziz Ansari
Atomic Archive
James Benjamin
Elton Beard
Charlie Bertsch
alister black
Blame India Watch
Blog Left: Critical Interventions Warblog / war blog
Igor Boog
Martin Butler
Chris Campbell
James M. Capozzola
Avedon Carol
Elaine Cassel
cats blog
Jeff Chang
Margaret Cho
Citizens Of Upright Moral Character
Louis CK
Les Dabney
Natalie Davis
Scoobie Davis
The Day Job
Jodi Dean
Dominic Duval
Steve Earle
Daniel Ellsberg
Tom Engelhardt
Lisa English
Barbara Flaska
Brian Flemming
Joe Foster
Yoshie Furuhashi
Al Giordano
Rob Goodspeed
Grand Puba
Guardian Unlimited Weblog
Pete Guither
The Hairy Eyeball
Ray Hanania
Mark Hand
Hector Rottweiller Jr's Web Log Jim Henley Arvin Hill Hit & Run (Reason) Hugo Clark Humphrey Indri The Iraqi Agora Dru Oja Jay Jeff Lynne d Johnson Dallas Jones Julia Kane Blues Benjamin Kepple Ken Layne Phil Leggiere Brian Linse Adam Magazine Majority Report Radio Marc Maron Josh Marshall Jeralyn Merritt J.R. Mooneyham Michael Scott Moore Bob Morris Bob Mould Mr. Show and Tell Muslims For Nader/Camejo David Neiwert NewPages Weblog Aimee Nezhukumatathil Sean O'Brien Patton Oswalt The Panda's Thumb Randy Paul Rodger A. Payne Ian Penman politx Neal Pollack Greg Proops Pro-War.com Pure Polemics Seyed Razavi Rayne Simon Reynolds richardpryor.com Clay Richards Mike Rogers Yuval Rubinstein
Steven Rubio
Saragon Noah Shachtman Court Schuett The Simpsons Archive Amardeep Singh Sam Smith Soundbitten Jack Sparks Ian Spiers Morgan Spurlock Stand Down: The Left-Right Blog Opposing an Invasion of Iraq Aaron Stark Morgaine Swann Tapped (The American Prospect) tex Matthew Tobey Annie Tomlin Tom Tomorrow The University Without Condition Jesse Walker Warblogger Watch Diane Warth The Watchful Babbler The Weblog we have brains Matt Welch
Alex Whalen
Jon Wiener
Lizz Winstead
James Wolcott
Wooster Collective
Mickey Z

Wednesday, October 22, 2003
Anger, hope and a bit of joy

Contrary to what Lewis Black says on the generally excellent Rules of Enragement (Comedy Central Records, 2003), U.S. President George W. Bush and friends did give plenty of reasons for invading Iraq. Although I may not have got them all, by my count their reasons included freedom, self-defense, democracy, human rights, somebody and country, ensuring that taxidermy remains legal in Dover and helping Burger King maintain revenues despite any explosion in popularity that may ever be experienced by Soul Veg -a great chain of restaurants even if the group behind them isn't my cup of tea. And those were just the stated reasons. Many suspected there were others such as a desire to obtain Iraq’s electric car research and/or something that Jonah Goldberg of nationalreview.com pointed out on Monday in a piece entitled "The Case for War":

Q: If you're a new sheriff in a really bad town, what's one of the smartest things you can do?

A: Smack the stuffing out of the nearest, biggest bad guy you can.

Q: If you're a new inmate in a rough prison, what's one of the smartest things you can do?

A: Pick a fight with the biggest, meanest cat you can — but make sure you can win.

Q: If you're a kid and you've had enough of the school bullies pants-ing you in the cafeteria, what's one of the smartest things you can do?

A: Punch one of them in the nose as hard as you can and then stand your ground. Q: If you're the leader of a peaceful and prosperous nation which serves as the last best hope of humanity and the backbone of international stability and a bunch of fanatics murder thousands of your people on your own soil, what's one of the smartest thing you can do?

A: Knock the crap out of Iraq.

Why Iraq? Well, there are two answers to that question.

The first answer is "Why not?" (If it helps, think of Bluto burping "Why not?" in Animal House.)

The second answer: Iraq deserved it.

Now. Here's the important part: Both of these are good answers.

Matthew Yglesias has written a brief critique of Goldberg's argument -which isn't new for him- over at Tapped but unfortunately misses the larger issues of how Goldberg's position is probably every bit as much about making people like him feel good about themselves because of Uncle Sam's wars as it is about scaring others and that Goldberg deserves credit for stating his position. Sure there's a distasteful quality to it but I suspect that attitude he displays influenced the decision to wage war against Iraq for over a decade far more than anybody in an official position is likely to admit and it is only when an idea is made public that it can be fairly discussed. Otherwise apologists can respond with some variation of "He didn't say that word and I'm not going to fall into the trap of defining terms or engaging in addition."

Of course, by "discussed," I mean ridiculed since it is hard to have a debate with somebody who thinks actions that will kill innocent civilians are acceptable to reinforce and get others to bow down to you. Proponents of this effort to show that the U.S. is a Shaft who doesn't have to watch his mouth are effectively the non-identical twins of most despicable of "the terrorists."

Then there is the issue of being a "peaceful" country. Somehow you lose that quality when start wars because there isn't a reason not to.

I wish I found this type of thing amusing but the idea that somebody gets paid to stuff like this, which isn't even fun to read, is about as pleasant as watching William Bennett do his impression of Marlon Brando playing Al Gore at the first debate with Bush in 2000, although I guess somebody likes to watch that. Writing predicated on the notion that the Antichrist would never call an audible on the assumption that there isn’t anything to lose entertains me. This doesn’t.

That said, there is still hope for the future. Writing about his son, Douglas Anders writes:

Just before dinner tonight, Gabe was playing with a little musical piano that plays "Pop Goes the Weasel." It stoped mid-tune when the batteries gave out.

Gabe set it down, "Jebus!" he said.

Meanwhile I just realized that four of my all-time favorite episodes -"The Two Mrs. Nahasapeemapetilons,"Lisa the Skeptic," "All Singing, All Dancing" and "This Little Wiggy"- were from season nine.