First we had an election landslide against the Republicans, in which the Iraq war was the #1 concern of voters. Then we had an Iraq Study Group. It was described by the mainstream media as “bipartisan”. Here’s what “bipartisan” actually means: Chairman James A. Baker III—Chief of Staff, Reagan; Secretary of State, Bush I. Co-chairman Lee H. Hamilton—allegedly a Democrat. As chair of a previous Select Committee, he chose not to investigate Reagan or Bush I for their roles in the Iran-Contra scandal.
Idiocracy is Mike Judge’s new live action movie. Well, I say “new”; I gather it was pretty much finished in 2004, and since then he has been battling with 20th Century Fox to get it released. Right now, it’s showing in a handful of cities, probably a contractual obligation release before it gets shuffled off to DVD or buried outright. One of the cities is Austin, so we went to see it last night.
So it’s a total disaster in New Orleans. Three levees are breached, one of them has a hole over 150 meters across. 80% of the city is under water up to 6 meters deep. The entire city is without electrical power or water supply. It’s estimated that it will be 9–12 weeks before they can even get rid of the water, much less get the city habitable. Interstate 10 is broken chunks of floating concrete; there’s no route into the city for trucks and other major vehicles.
Reuters: U.S. Army soldiers in Iraq filmed themselves kicking a gravely wounded prisoner in the face and making the arm of a corpse appear to wave, then titled the effort “Ramadi Madness” after the city where it was made. The video, made public on Monday, was shot by Florida National Guard soldiers. They edited and compiled it into a DVD in January 2004, with various sections bearing titles such as “Those Crafty Little Bastards” and “Another Day, Another Mission, Another Scumbag.
The US army is planning to deploy a new system for targeting air strikes: soldiers will be able to enter the coordinates on a Windows CE handheld, and transmit them via a mobile phone text message to the jet pilots. Responding to safety and reliability concerns, the military intelligences behind the system reassuringly explain that when Windows CE crashes, it only takes 12 seconds to reboot it.