Archive for April, 2008

John McCain’s Obsession
April 11, 2008

From a March 26, 2008 speech by McCain:

“It would be an unconscionable act of betrayal, a stain on our character as a great nation, if we were to walk away from the Iraqi people and consign them to the horrendous violence, ethnic cleansing and possibly genocide that would follow a reckless, irresponsible and premature withdrawal,” McCain told the Los Angeles World Affairs Council in California.

With all the talk of stains and premature withdrawal, The Lion has to wonder about just what it is that’s on McCain’s mind. After all, this is the guy who tried to digitize an unwilling woman in the back of his limo when she came to him for help.

On the other hand, perhaps McCain is simply trying to hide from The Lion the fact that McCain’s a gun-happy insane old man who still hasn’t got a clue about the Middle East, or Iraq, or Iran, or Afghanistan, or al Qaeda, or the United States.

It’s unfortunate that The Lion’s terminal horniness makes him somewhat susceptible to this sort of unfair sexed-up speechifying. But with a bit of a struggle The Lion is able to see right through these attempts to muddy the waters, and therefore proclaims John McCain to be the Second Coming of George W. Bush.

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Smitty, The Jihadi Next Door
April 10, 2008

The terrorist was weeding his new vegetable garden next door when I walked over to say hello. He had moved in only last week.

“Hi,” I said, using my best smile. “I’m your neighbor and I want to welcome you to the neighborhood.”

He was a young fellow, about thirty, wearing blue jeans and a denim workshirt and off-brand running shoes. He wiped his hands on his pants and we shook hands.

“Hello. Thank you. My name is Mohamet abu Masri abu Tikriti al Fallujah ben Bushi al Salami Smith.” He smiled. “Just call me Smitty.”

“Pleased to meet you, Smitty. Nice garden.” I admired the neat rows of young plants.

He threw his hands up. “It’s my wife. Every year with the garden. She’s got to have a garden because her mother had a garden, her mother’s mother had a garden. All her mothers had gardens, right back to Eve.”

“She helps you with it though?”

“You must not be married, friend. She doesn’t want to break a nail.”

We talked a bit about the weather and how he liked the town.

“Where are you from?” I asked.

“San Diego. Just south of San Diego.”

“What brings you here then? New England hardly compares to the weather there, hey?”

He shrugged. “Very true. I miss all the sun and the sand. It reminds of my real home.”

“Oh. Where’s that?”

“Iraq. I left Iraq in 2004 to come here.”

A glimmer of understanding flashed in my brain. “Ah, so you must be one of the refugees.”

“No, oh no no. All the refugees went to Sweden or Jordan or Syria. No no. I am a terrorist.”

“I’m sorry?”

“A terrorist. You know. Jihadi. Blow things up.”

“But… but that’s not possible. You can’t be in this country if you’re a terrorist.”

“No, it’s okay,” he said, waggling both hands at me. “I registered with y0ur local police.”

“What?” I knew the local cops were a little slovenly and spent too much time flirting with the girls at Starbucks and MaryJane’s Donut Shoppe, but this was a little over the line even for them.

“But you’re a criminal. You attacked us.” I may have sputtered, but tried to contain it so as not to appear rude.

“Moi? No. Those were Saudis. I am Iraqi. I-rack-ee. Look.” He pulled out his wallet. “I have a paper from your police.” He handed me a card with his full name typed on it and that identified him as a lawful Iraqi terrorist.

“Well, gosh, okay, I guess,” I said, handing it back to him. “Jeez, there must be good money in terrorism,” I said, pointing at the house. It had sat on the market for two years and was way overpriced.

“Oh, no, not really. But when you invaded my country there was all this American money floating around. Saddam had stored it everywhere. I helped myself to several bundles.”

“You stole it?”

“It no longer belonged to anyone. Like my country.”

“Oh, well, of course, that makes sense. Sorry about that.”

He shrugged. “Don’t worry about it.”

“But why come here, to America? Our soldiers are looking for you.”

“Well, your President Bush, he said many times that you wanted to fight us there so you wouldn’t have to fight us here. You attacked us, and you are still there.”

“Not my first choice, I want you to know.”

“Of course. Not ours, either. So, we didn’t want to fight you. We just wanted you to go away. You didn’t go away. So since you don’t want to fight us here, we came here.”

“Does that mean you aren’t going to blow anything up, try to destroy our way of life, blow up Wall Street?”

He laughed. “Oh, no no no. You are doing all that very well yourself. We no longer have to do anything. Oh, there’s some volunteers still blowing things up over there. They just like the action. Keep the pot stirred up just enough so your government will continue its crazy action until it falls down.”

“So you’re really a retired terrorist?”

“Absolutely. Your Republicans will do all the work for us.” He clapped me on the back. “Now, you must come in and meet my wife and have some tea. Maybe we can play a little backgammon. You like backgammon? A dollar a point? It’s for my health plan.”

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Why We Are At War
April 8, 2008

The Lion admits to thieving this comment from Common Dreams. Read the whole list, to the end. Then think of a question to ask yourself.

Republicans — These are the guys sending people to war:

  • Dick Cheney: did not serve. Several deferments, the last by marriage. [Had ‘other priorities’.]
  • Dennis Hastert: did not serve.
  • Tom Delay: did not serve.
  • Roy Blunt: did not serve.
  • Bill Frist: did not serve.
  • Mitch McConnell: did not serve.
  • Rick Santorum: did not serve.
  • Trent Lott: did not serve.
  • John Ashcroft: did not serve. Seven deferments to teach business.
  • Jeb Bush: did not serve.
  • Karl Rove: did not serve.
  • Saxby Chambliss: did not serve. “Bad knee.” The man who attacked Max Cleland’s patriotism.
  • Paul Wolfowitz: did not serve.
  • Vin Weber: did not serve.
  • Richard Perle: did not serve.
  • Douglas Feith: did not serve.
  • Eliot Abrams: did not serve.
  • Richard Shelby: did not serve.
  • Jon Kyl: did not serve.
  • Tim Hutchison: did not serve.
  • Christopher Cox: did not serve.
  • Newt Gingrich: did not serve.
  • Don Rumsfeld: served in Navy (1954-57) as flight instructor.
  • George W. Bush: failed to complete his six-year National Guard; got assigned to Alabama so he could campaign for family friend running for U.S. Senate; failed to show up for required medical exam, disappeared from duty.
  • B-1 Bob Dornan: Consciously enlisted after fighting was over in Korea.
  • Phil Gramm: did not serve.
  • John McCain: Silver Star, Bronze Star, Legion of Merit, Purple Heart and Distinguished Flying Cross.
  • Dana Rohrabacher: did not serve.
  • John M. McHugh: did not serve.
  • JC Watts: did not serve.
  • Jack Kemp: did not serve. “Knee problem,” although continued in NFL for 8 years.
  • Dan Quayle: Journalism unit of the Indiana National Guard.
  • Rudy Giuliani: did not serve.
  • George Pataki: did not serve.
  • Spencer Abraham: did not serve.
  • John Engler: did not serve.
  • Lindsey Graham: National Guard lawyer.
  • Arnold Schwarzenegger: AWOL from Austrian army base.
  • Ronald Reagan: due to poor eyesight, served in a non-combat role making movies.

Pundits & Preachers:

  • Sean Hannity: did not serve.
  • Rush Limbaugh: did not serve (4-F with a ‘pilonidal cyst.’)
  • Bill O’Reilly: did not serve.
  • Michael Savage: did not serve.
  • George Will: did not serve.
  • Chris Matthews: did not serve.
  • Paul Gigot: did not serve.
  • Bill Bennett: did not serve.
  • Pat Buchanan: did not serve. (Did oppose the war in Iraq)
  • Bill Kristol: did not serve.
  • Kenneth Starr: did not serve.
  • Antonin Scalia: did not serve.
  • Clarence Thomas: did not serve.
  • Ralph Reed: did not serve.
  • Michael Medved: did not serve.
  • Charlie Daniels: did not serve.
  • Ted Nugent: did not serve. (He only shoots at things that don’t shoot back.)
  • John Wayne: did not serve.
  • Gerald Mcraney: did not serve. Played a Vietnam Vet on 3 TV shows (Simon & Simon, Major Dad, and Promise Land)


  • Richard Gephardt: Air National Guard, 1965-71.
  • David Bonior: Staff Sgt., Air Force 1968-72.
  • Tom Daschle: 1st Lt., Air Force SAC 1969-72.
  • Al Gore: enlisted Aug. 1969; sent to Vietnam Jan. 1971 as an army journalist in 20th Engineer Brigade.
  • Bob Kerrey: Lt. j.g. Navy 1966-69; Medal of Honor, Vietnam.
  • Daniel Inouye: Army 1943-47; Medal of Honor, WWII.
  • John Kerry: Lt., Navy 1966-70; Silver Star, Bronze Star with Combat V, Purple Hearts.
  • Charles Rangel: Staff Sgt., Army 1948-52; Bronze Star, Korea.
  • Max Cleland: Captain, Army 1965-68; Silver Star & Bronze Star, Vietnam.
  • Ted Kennedy: Army, 1951-53.
  • Tom Harkin: Lt., Navy, 1962-67; Naval Reserve, 1968-74.
  • Jack Reed: Army Ranger, 1971-1979; Captain, Army Reserve 1979-91.
  • Fritz Hollings: Army officer in WWII; Bronze Star and seven campaign ribbons.
  • Leonard Boswell: Lt. Col., Army 1956-76; Vietnam, DFCs, Bronze Stars, and Soldier’s Medal.
  • Pete Peterson: Air Force Captain, POW. Purple Heart, Silver Star and Legion of Merit.
  • Mike Thompson: Staff sergeant, 173rd Airborne, Purple Heart.
  • Bill McBride: Candidate for Fla. Governor. Marine in Vietnam; Bronze Star with Combat V.
  • Gray Davis: Army Captain in Vietnam, Bronze Star.
  • Pete Stark: Air Force 1955-57
  • Chuck Robb: Vietnam
  • Howell Heflin: Silver Star
  • George McGovern: Silver Star & DFC during WWII.
  • Bill Clinton: Did not serve. Student deferments. Entered draft but received #311.
  • Jimmy Carter: Seven years in the Navy.
  • Walter Mondale: Army 1951-1953
  • John Glenn: WWII and Korea; six DFCs and Air Medal with 18 Clusters.
  • Tom Lantos: Served in Hungarian underground in WWII. Saved by Raoul Wallenberg.
  • John Murtha: Marines, Vietnam, Purple Heart, Bronze Star

The Lion is sure that one could find many Democrats who did not serve, but this list isn’t about any Democrats, or just any Republicans. It’s about the leaders in both parties, the people who have stood out, who have had influence.

Cheney, Senators Working For Al-Qaeda Aims, Says Retired United States General
April 6, 2008

From Common Dreams, a must read. Here’s a quote from the middle of the story, which reports on General Odom’s testimony April 2 before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee:

Then [Lt. General (ret.) William E.] Odom let fly a real bomb. “As an aside,” he told the committee, in a statement that you won’t read in your daily paper or hear on the TV news, “it gives me pause to learn that our vice president and some members of the Senate are aligned with al Qaeda on spreading the war to Iran.”

He destroys the credibility of the surge, and of Petraeus, and those who advocate for ‘staying the course’ rather than withdrawing from Iraq.

The Lion Is Down! The Lion Is Down! Oh The Humanity!
April 3, 2008

It’s somewhat disconcerting when some process in your body decides to go whack-a-doo and bring down the whole system.

That was some part of my thinking as I watched my house get smaller through the back window of the ambulance this morning. The other parts of my thinking included “Shit, this is it!” and “Oh shit this is really it!” and “Who’s gonna take care of my frigging cats?” and “Why am I doing this alone?” There was another part wondering who was the madman driving the ambulance.

The upshot was a day in the emergency room getting poked, questioned, stuck with sharp things, x-rayed, and scanned.

The result was “We dunno, but it ain’t the big things.” Okay, it was said a little more technically than that, but that’s what it was.

So, I’m home, I’m exhausted, I’m a little pissed off, and probably won’t even think of the blog for a couple of days.

Nor am I sure what I think right now. I’m not dead. My cats are fed. My life goes on, for some finite amount of time.

Now what?

(That still small voice we’ve all heard so much about says “You should have grabbed the blonde over there, dumbass,” but I think I’m looking for something a little more noble from that voice. Although…)

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Contest Results Are In, And The Big Winner Is…
April 1, 2008

The Lion has reviewed all the entries for The Grumpy Contest, carefully considered each one and all the nuances of each. In his wisdom, The Lion has decided that most of the suggestions required actual work, and thinking, and research, and reading stuff. Those were declared ineligible by a committee comprising The Lion.

QB offered the low-hanging fruit of Hillary Clinton’s lies, but that was just too easy. That practically wrote itself. Of course it wasn’t humorous, as QB would have liked. Sorry about that, QB! And welcome back!

Ordinary Girl missed the point. She actually wanted The Lion to come up with an idea himself. But she’s a nice Midwestern girl, probably a little naive about effete, lazy, neurotic New Englanders. It was sweet of her though.

Philly Chief had a couple of interesting ones – ‘nipplegate’, and the fellow who is apparently harder up than The Lion, as he was caught raping a picnic table. One might hope he’s safely locked up someplace that lacks tables. And the chairs probably shouldn’t turn their backs on the guy. Even so, The Lion thinks he’d have to work more than he likes to dig up those stories and do something original with them, given that they probably can’t be topped in their simple, unvarnished telling.

Evo offered up Hillary. Unfortunately he made the beginner’s mistake of telling the whole story in his suggestion. Points for identifying her probable motives, though, which underscores the viciousness of her campaign.

Pattie offers grimness, though a good cause. The Lion thinks those folk are getting pretty good coverage in the press, which does need prodding now and again. Besides, The Lion doesn’t have it in him to get snarky about innocent men trapped in a deeply flawed system of what some call justice.

Finally, Parenthetical Billy came up with something that requires the least work, no research, no reading, and that allows The Lion to get snarky about his own favorite subject. Himself. An almost perfect suggestion. Of course Billy had to go spoil it somewhat by insulting the place in which The Lion lives, a place with nine months of crappy weather and three months of traffic jams and raging tourism. Perhaps PB would be willing to rent The Lion a room or two in the undoubtedly peaceful, bucolic, and just wonderful place where he lives?

Didn’t think so. Come say hi when you visit the Cape, PB. 🙂

Be that as it may, PB’s suggestion about influence has been ticking around in The Lion’s battered brain, and having already committed various crimes of getting personal in Grumpy Lion, The Lion sees little fault in perhaps doing it again, thus revealing more of his complex, ever fascinating, profound, and brilliant personality.

Therefore, the Lion declares Parenthetical Billy the winner. Unfortunately the cats ate the prize, four tickets to the finals of the NCAA basketball tournament, and two tickets to the next Super Bowl, and four tickets for all this year’s World Series games. Sorry about that, PB. On the positive side, you’ll get a better view of the games watching on the television.

The results of PB’s suggestion will appear soon at a Grumpy Lion blog in your neighborhood. Watch for celebrities, and enjoy the champagne.

And a hearty thanks to all six contestants, who gave it their all, overcoming tremendous odds (The Lion) in their valiant attempts to trample each other in the race to the finish.

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