happy evacuation day

March 17, 2003
So in parts of Massachusetts, today is Evacuation Day...Boston's way of celebrating St. Patrick's Day in a revolutionary war history kind of way. It seems like Bush has decided to observe the holiday as well, telling the UN inspectors to get the hell out.

Turns out my thoughts on this issue have been pretty constant for almost a year, last April I started a thread on Usenet about it (with the unfortunate title "Attaq Iraq?"--what can I say, I was young and foolish)... back then I was surprised how this just wasn't on people's radar, even though a New Yorker editorial I had read mentioned the Pentagon thought it was an inevitability. And the administration gets its way by ramping up the military encirclement to such an extent that backing down looks even worse than going on with the damn thing.

Joke of the Moment
President Bush and Colin Powell are sitting in a bar. A guy walks in and asks the barman, "Isn't that Bush and Powell sitting over there?"
The barman says, "Yep, that's them."
So the guy walks over and says, "Wow, this is a real honor. What are you guys doing in here?"
Bush says, "We're planning WWIII".
And the guy says, "Really? What's going to happen?"
Bush says, "Well, we're going to kill 140 million Iraqis this time and one blonde with big tits."
The guy exclaimed, "A blonde with big tits? Why kill a blonde with big tits?"
Bush turns to Powell, punches him on the shoulder and says, "See, smart ass, I told you no one would worry about the 140 million Iraqis!"

Quote of the Moment
"According to Lifton, the standard requirements for a really sparkling clean brainwash include: isolation of the subjects, control over their information, debilitation, degradation, discipline and fear, peer pressure, performance of repetitive tasks, and renunciation of formerly held values. (All of which sounds eerily like law school to me.)"
--Dahlia Lithwick writing on brainwashing in Slate.com...is it real, or just a pseudoscientific way of explaining why seemingly nice and smart people believe certain things (especially religious/cultish) that we find unacceptable?

Article of the Moment
"Luckily" I have too many "clear and present" frets to give the Boston Housing Bubble much attention.