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September 15, 2013

Overnight Open Thread (9-15-2013)

Obama: Hey It's Just Style Points

President Obama says a tumultuous month as commander in chief, when his policy toward Syria took a number of unexpected turns, may not have looked "smooth and disciplined and linear," but it's working.

"I'm less concerned about style points. I'm much more concerned with getting the policy right," Obama told ABC's George Stephanopoulos in an exclusive interview on "This Week."

Jonathon Tobin: No You Lost More Than Just Style Points in Syria

By demonstrating his lack of will to act on what he has rightly labeled a human-rights catastrophe, President Obama has not only secured the Russian base in Syria; he has sent the region a signal that the U.S. is a paper tiger.

...Had President Obama not played Hamlet about acting on his own authority to strike Syria none of this needed to happen. Several months ago the Russians feared they were about to lose the last vestige of their once-formidable sphere of influence in the region as Assad tottered. Now they are back in business and Assad is even deeper in their debt than before. Bolstered by victory in Syria, Iran also has good reason to be more confident about stalling or even defying the West on the nuclear issue. All this is something Obama handed to them free of charge on a silver platter. That isn't "style" Mr. President; it's substance. And the consequences will be suffered by the people of Syria, regional allies like Israel, and an American people who, despite their justified worries about trusting Obama with military force in Syria, will soon realize that American prestige and influence has never been so low since Jimmy Carter sat in the White House.

News You Can Use: How to Turn Fruit Juice into Cheap Homemade Booze

turn-your-favorite-fruit-juice-into-cheap-homemade-booze.w654 281245-a-man-passed-out-in-a-chair-after-the-office-party--horizontal-view


Remembering Meghan McCain's Dirty Sexy Politics

And Leon H. Wolf's brutal, disemboweling of a book review. It's hard to believe that it's been two years already.

On June 20, 2002, the United States Supreme Court decreed, in the case of Atkins v. Virginia, that the mildly mentally retarded were categorically exempt from capital punishment, reasoning that fully functional adults of diminished mental capacity were as a matter of law not as culpable for their acts. Writing eloquently in dissent, Justice Scalia drew a sharp distinction between the severely mentally retarded (who are truly not responsible for their actions), and the merely stupid (the category into which Mr. Atkins undoubtedly fell). Scalia argued forcefully that, with respect to the merely stupid, at least sometimes they deserve to be punished for their antisocial and destructive behavior.

This article, of course, is not about capital punishment. It is a book review of Dirty, Sexy Politics by Meghan McCain. However, the above discussion is relevant because I initially had reservations about writing this book review at all. After all, it is clear to everyone who has read Meghan McCain's twitter feed, her "articles" on The Daily Beast, or her ill-fated campaign blog that Meghan is not a paragon of clear reasoning, exemplar of familiarity with facts, nor a model of English language expertise. And after subjecting myself to 194 continuous pages of her "writing," it became clear that none of the above-described works truly plumbed the depths of mental vacuity in which Ms. McCain aimlessly and cluelessly drifts.

This presented a dilemma.

It is impossible to read Dirty, Sexy Politics and come away with the impression that you have read anything other than the completely unedited ramblings of an idiot. This being a professional website for which I have a great deal of respect, I searched for a more eloquent or gentle way to accurately phrase the previous sentence - but could not find one.

And of course as ever Meghan fails upwards with a new TV show:

This is the series' structure: In each episode McCain learns something. As the show's title promises, the series is educating her and, by extension, Pivot's hoped-for young audience. A protagonist learning alongside the viewers is an effective storytelling technique, but only if there's a higher, already educated intelligence operating off screen. On camera, it's great to ask questions and play the naif, so long as someone off-camera knows where all those questions lead. Raising McCain doesn't seem to have that guiding intelligence.

130912_TV_RaisingMcCain.jpg.CROP.article568-large

OMG: The Scourge of Unregulated Dinner Parties

Inviting strangers into your home and feeding them must be limited and controlled by the government or else society will crumble!

The diners are a mix of New Yorkers and tourists. CBS 2's undercover cameras captured one experience - eight people who didn't know each other eating a meal in a stranger's home.

That hostess, Naama Shafi, writes about food but is not a chef. [Reporter Tamara] Leitner found her through a website, which connects amateur foodies and professional chefs in 20 different countries with people who want unique dining experiences.

Clandestine dinner parties like the one Leitner attended have become more common in New York City. And insiders told Leitner they are completely unregulated.

blind-dinner-party

Beware the Invasion of Boltzmann Brains

I wasn't even aware this was a threat:

A Boltzmann brain is a hypothesized self-aware entity which arises due to random fluctuations out of a state of chaos.

But not to worry the Higgs  boson is likely to destroy us before the Boltzmann Brains.

boltzmann23images

Take the Defunct Car Quiz

How well do you know your now-gone vehicles?

quiz001

Bad Idea #297: Rapist Prisoner, Female Therapist Do 'Reintegration' Therapy Alone in Woods

The therapist is now dead and the prisoner is on the run.

A man-hunt is underway in Switzerland after the body of a Swiss therapist was found dead in the woods in Switzerland just hours after she had escorted a convict on a reintegration to society session.

Adeline Morel, a 34-year-old mother and therapist, went missing with Fabrice Anthamatten, 39, yesterday.

Her body was hidden in a bag in the woods in Versoix near the Swiss city.

Anthamatten had been charged with rapes going back more than 10 years.

French-born Anthamatten was serving out his sentence at Geneva's Champ-Dollon prison - he was convicted in both France and Switzerland on rape charges dating back as far as 2001.

Back then he was given a five-year sentence for rape and in 2003 he was given another 15 years.

The pair failed to show up for an equestrian therapy session scheduled for yesterday morning.

article-2420266-1BCDF701000005DC-529_306x423

Heh: American 'Jihadi Rapper' Killed by Fellow Jihadists

The son of a Syrian Muslim father and a Baptist mother, who he once described as a "typical Southern protestant girl", Amriki came to international prominence when he posted a series of Youtube videos in which he rapped about jihad.

407607

Mechanical Gears Seen in Nature For the First Time

functioningm

On Tattoos

Commenter slumber_j points to this New Yorker cartoon about "The subtext of all tattoos:" "Ask me about my parents' divorce."

A related subtext might be: "I come from a long line of rash decisionmakers." On women, tattoos often seem to imply: "Pay attention to me because I, obviously, make poor choices, so you might get lucky."
eric-lewis-subtext-of-all-tattoos-new-yorker-cartoon

Weekly AoSHQ Commenter Standings

Top 10 commenters:
1 [519 comments] 'Jones in CO' [72.86 posts/day]
2 [450 comments] 'sven10077'
3 [441 comments] 'Boss Moss'
4 [320 comments] 'panzernashorn'
5 [315 comments] 'Vic'
6 [296 comments] 'Nevergiveup'
7 [253 comments] 'Mike Hammer'
8 [251 comments] 'AllenG (Dedicated Tenther) MFM Delenda Est'
9 [246 comments] 'Flatbush Joe'
10 [245 comments] 'Purp</i></b></u></s>'

Top 10 sockpuppeteers:
1 [75 names] 'phreshone' [10.53 unique names/day]
2 [64 names] 'The Political Hat'
3 [54 names] 'sven10077'
4 [52 names] 'Adam'
5 [43 names] 't-bird'
6 [41 names] 'Boss Moss'
7 [41 names] 'adams'
8 [36 names] 'Low Information Voter'
9 [34 names] 'Islamic Rage Boy'
10 [34 names] 'Doctor Fish'

The group. Yeah.

Where it's at - the Twitter

Tonight's post brought to you by not being on the A-team:

standup_comedy_10e

Notice: Posted by permission of AceCorp LLC. Please e-mail overnight open thread tips to maetenloch at gmail. Otherwise send tips to Ace.

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