Tuesday, October 09, 2012

Putting the "Mental" in Fundamentalism

At some point, we'll have to leave the Af-Pak area to these animals.

On Tuesday, masked Taliban gunmen answered Ms. Yousafzai’s courage with bullets, singling out the 14-year-old on a bus filled with terrified schoolchildren, then shooting her in the head and neck. Two other girls were also wounded in the attack. All three survived, but late on Tuesday doctors said that Ms. Yousafzai was in critical condition at a hospital in Peshawar, with a bullet possibly lodged close to her brain.
A Taliban spokesman, Ehsanullah Ehsan, confirmed by phone that Ms. Yousafzai had been the target, calling her crusade for education rights an “obscenity.”
“She has become a symbol of Western culture in the area; she was openly propagating it,” Mr. Ehsan said, adding that if she survived, the militants would certainly try to kill her again. “Let this be a lesson.”

Great. Yes, it would be twelve kinds of awesome sauce if someone could round up Ehsan and his buddies, and just end them once and for all. But by now, we should be able to see that it doesn't work that way, it'll never work that way, not with constant drone raids and collateral damage.

Just as there is no liberal counterpart to a twisted freak like Bill Tapley, so too is there no real western counterpart to the Taliban, to this scarily regressive, heavily bastardized perversion of Islam, that hates women and science, murders writers, threatens artists, molests boys, incites riots over comic drawings and fake films, wants nothing more than to bully and subjugate their societies back to the seventh century. Whatever idiots like Tapley, or "Pastor" Terry Jones, or even Fred Phelps are, they're not that, not by a longshot. Phelps is a king-size gaping asshole, but I'm pretty sure he never tried to assassinate an eighth-grade girl on a schoolbus.

But it's impossible at this point to imagine what we can actually do to alleviate the situation. I'm sure tough guy chickenhawk Sir Mitts-A-Lot wants to send other peoples' kids in to kick ass and take names, not only in Af-Pak, but Syria, Libya, and Iran to boot. No problem, right?

Again, let's just send as many planes in as we can to airlift out anyone who wants to leave, especially the women and children, leave the devout perverts to their own devices, see how well that goes for them. Hell, can't be much worse than it is now.

[Update 10/12/12:  Some glimmers of hope in this terrible story -- Malala Yousafzai has a fair chance of surviving the attack (to which, of course, the mighty warriors of the Taliban have vowed to go after her again, as well as her father), and there have been several days of public protests against these fiends. Again, it would be nice to believe that the Pakistani military could just go round these humps up, and plant them in a ditch forthwith. But of course it never works that way. The next best way is for the people themselves to rise up en masse against them, demonstrate that they've had enough of their violent medievalism.]


Anonymous said...

Kudos [not] on your decision to 'upgrade' you site with ads, which these days invariably come directly from Mittens Central. If you don't find that a bit degrading, you should.

Don't bother with the rationalizations, I can already imagine them.

...and if you think you have 'no control' and it's 'out of your hands', well you do have control: you can stop running ads.

Otherwise, you might as well just continue the trend and post videos with 30 sec. of disgusting right-wing spam in front of them, like everyone else these days. It won't be long until the internet is just like commercial TV, except that you can't Tivo past the ads. Thanks a whole fucking lot for contributing to the pollution.

Anonymous said...

Not to twist the knife too much, but we used to be "allies" with these people against the Soviets. Think about that for awhile and what that says about us as a nation.

Anonymous said...

...but it leads to some hilarious cultural artifacts - check out the Bond movie where Brosnan meets Bin Laden in his luxurious exotic mid-eastern tent lair, before he and his gang help Bond invade the soviet air force base. (_View to a Kill_(?))

Desargues said...

Anon1: I'm more sanguine about the presence of the occasional right-wing ad on this blog, and others like it. If Repubs want to spend their money uselessly advertising on liberal blogs, who are we to stop them -- that's money well spent, as far as I'm concerned: for us, by them. It's wasted money that could have gone to a more effective advertising campaign, but it didn't, thankfully. My enemy's losses are my gains, that's what I say.

Heywood J. said...

In the spirit of my ongoing mission to contribute to the eternal pollution and butthurt of the internets, let me clarify something for you, Nony 8:58.

I've been running this blog for eight years come January. In that entire time, I've never asked for so much as a dime (though folks have generously offered, and I appreciate it). And until a couple weeks ago, I never ran any ads.

But because I'm sick of my real-world job, and am trying to find ways to do something I enjoy and possibly make some sort of income from it, I've spent most of this year (when I'm not working full-time or explaining shit to people) building content for another website, which I hope to launch soon.

Since I am still in the process of learning about such things as website monetization, I decided to start using this site as a sort of lab rat, in order to fine-tune ideas for what I want to do on my self-hosted, self-financed site to come. The current format and layout, number and position of the ads, will almost definitely change several times over the course of the next couple months.

Personally, I don't much care for advertising in any medium. But as it happens, I enjoy eating and paying my light bills more than I care about your aesthetic sensibilities. I too get quickly fatigued at sitting through the same five commercials on the teevee, excruciatingly bad slam poetry peddling red Levi's every five fucking minutes. So the trick is, I change the channel.

I don't have interactive video ads, or mouseover browser hijacker ads, or obtrusive "please take this awesome poll" ads. Whatever your dystopic vision, near as I can tell, I have ads that can be scrolled past if seeing Mitt Romney's name causes one to break out in purity hives.

And no, I don't have control over which ads appear. Really, I'm not even supposed to talk about them. But I hear your plaint, and I care deeply, just enough to tell you that I don't know what to tell you. Perhaps a few bars of the Tool classic Hooker with a Penis will help, you can kindly Google the lyrics yourself.

Heywood J. said...

Nony 2:58, yes, you will find many pained missives in these here archives over the heartbreak of blowback, the tragedy of unintended consequences. The usual Serious Thinkers, your CIA/State Dept. career-hack types, love to bandy about the old "enemy of my enemy is my friend" crap, but they never seem to quite fully vet that second enemy.

Desargues said...

The crack dealers at Politico support my case above that R-money is pissing away his money.

Heywood J. said...

Yeah, not much real impact here, but I'd love nothing more than to think that I could help Mittens dribble Shelly Adelson's casino pelf away with his shriveled advert dick.