The Bubble Genius Bob & Chez Show 9/4/13


Vast and Pernicious: War in Syria; McCain Adds Regime Change Language to AUMF; The Potential for Quagmire; Getting Involved in the Middle East and Africa; Rep. Jeff Duncan’s Hillbilly Benghazi Tirade; The Convergence of Drudge, Assange, the Far-Left and Far-Right; PRISM Fantastico; NSA Spying on Brazil; Greenwald’s Quid Pro Quo; and much more. Brought to you by Bubble Genius, the Amazon Link and the Bowen Law Group.

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  • muselet

    Trainspotting is set in Edinburgh, Bob. If you tell a Scot he has an English accent, you should either run or prepare to take a thrashing. (And yes, Scottish accents can be pretty impenetrable, especially if some slang gets thrown into the mix.)

    Chez with subtitles would be fun, but subtext subtitles? Those would read like a Tarantino movie gone wrong.

    Over the past week, John McCain has taken every conceivable position on limited intervention in Syria, sometimes claiming two incompatible positions within a couple of sentences. This isn’t intellectual flexibility or a willingness to compromise, it’s incoherence. McCain’s mad belief that there is a single, unified Syrian opposition led by a democratic and more-or-less–secular Free Syrian Army is why he thinks the US should “change the momentum on the battlefield in Syria.” Seriously, why does anyone take John McCain seriously on matters of national security?

    As terrible as McCain’s amendment to the Syria AUMF is—and it is terrible—it’s nothing compared to what a President John Sidney McCain III would have done, so maybe we should count our blessings that he’s merely an unaccountably influential senator.

    It remains to be seen just how much of a new precedent Barack Obama has set with regard to the use of military force. Rs, and Righties in general, are pretty clear that they have no use for precedent if it gets in the way of what they want to do. Still, kudos to Obama for trying.

    Jeff Duncan isn’t bright enough to know he had his head handed to him by John Kerry, so I fully expect him to keep yapping about Benghazi! Benghazi!! Benghazi!!! Amusingly, if you listen carefully to the crosstalk on the video Ashby posted earlier today, Duncan demands a yes or no from Kerry because his time is limited; but if his time was so limited, perhaps he shouldn’t have spent 3½ minutes asking his ridiculous question.

    Chez, we all know that paraphrase of Nietzsche came from a junior staffer who Googled “quotes about trust” this morning in a blind panic.

    I used to be a science-fiction geek (certainly more than I am now, and while I’m on the subject, RIP Frederik Pohl), and I read the letters to Analog for years. Every time politics would come up in an editorial, at least one person—almost always male, of course—would insist that the Right/Left (or Republican/Democrat) paradigm was old and worn out; the only correct and proper way of looking at an issue was an authoritarian versus libertarian. And, inevitably, the editor would politely point out that the old, passé way of looking at politics was still reliable and useful. That Matt Drudge is now saying something similar just means he’s thirty years behind the times.

    Oh, Bob, didn’t you realize? Julian Assange operates on a higher plane than we mere mortals, and simple arithmetic is beneath him. As is logic. And the definition of “principled” as regards Ron “Crazy Uncle Liberty” and Rand “I’m A Libertarian Except When It Comes To Ladybits” Paul.

    As many have said before, it’s easy for Glenn Greenwald to advocate the destruction of the two-party system in the US and honk on about how people’s short-term interests will have to be sacrificed in that cause when it’s not his bloody rights and/or bodily integrity that stand to be compromised. It’s amazing how calm he is about collateral damage when he knows he won’t be part of the collateral damage.

    According to some of Greenwald’s noisiest fans, he is entirely consistent on surveillance because EMPIRE! No, it doesn’t make sense to me, either.

    Have fun dealing with tons of angry emails, guys.


    • Bob Cesca

      On the accents, I tried to make it clear that yes, English and Scottish accents are different, but they both speak the English language and both are initially difficult to follow. I did a shitty job of explaining it during the show, but there it is.

      • muselet

        You’re right, you did make it clear, but since the most grievous insult to a Scot is to be called English (close second: skirt-wearer), I decided the one-liner was more important. Probably a mistake, in retrospect.


        • Lady Willpower


    • mrbrink

      I’m always late, but this is a stroke of genius as usual.