Secret Mojo Dumbs It Down for You

October 31, 2006

Simple question: “Where?”

Filed under: Iraq,mediachumps,News,Politics,rants,war — secretmojo @ 12:17 pm

The BBC reports that the Pentagon is launching a new propaganda — oops, I mean “media war” unit — that will attempt to offset — oops, I mean “correct” — unflattering (I mean “inaccurate”) breaking news reports.

My only question, which is blatantly missing in this article, is, “Where?” Who are the targets of this propa — media war? Which stations, which websites? More importantly, which country?

The BBC won’t say. They mention TV, radio, and weblogs, and grant the Pentagon a fully dictated — oops, I mean “reported” — paragraph to sort-of explain the issue:

The administration is particularly concerned that insurgents in areas such as Iraq have been able to use the web to disseminate their message and give the impression they are more powerful than the US, our correspondent says.

But my question still remains. “Where?”

Where will these bold countermeasures be conducted? On Iraqi TV? Iraqi Radio? Insurgent web sites?

Not mentioned. Which forces me to conclude that most of this media warring will be conducted in America, on American radio, on American TV, on American blogs, toward American station owners and American citizens.

Seriously, where else is that scary 24-hour news cycle that keeps Donald Rumsfeld “up at night” located? Where else can lobbyists and politicians (uh, “surrogates”) gear up and appear on a TV show so quickly? (Hint: Baghdad is 6,211 miles away from Washington. New York is 204.)

I will hazard a guess that Rumsfeld and the top brass don’t receive their daily supply of heebie jeebies from Al-Jazeera pundits. If not, who are they afraid of?

On Monday, US Vice President Dick Cheney also made reference to the use of media, suggesting insurgents had increased their attacks and were checking the internet to keep track of American public opinion. [emphasis added]

Ahhhh! That’s who. Never mind.

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August 21, 2006

One part of the Middle East puzzle almost completed

Filed under: Iraq,Politics,war — secretmojo @ 10:56 am

From a commenter at Right Wing Nuthouse:

TD Said:

Great post but I still think we are in transition in the Middle East and Iraq is just one part of the puzzle. Therefore, yes we in [sic] the middle of a violent, dangerous time in Iraq but the endgame has not played out.

* * *

Year Four Progress Report

Gettin there

puzzle made at flash-gear.com.

August 3, 2006

‘Freedom Fries’ renamed ‘Crow Fries’

Filed under: Humor,Iraq,News,Politics — secretmojo @ 7:22 pm

WASHINGTON, D.C – In the ongoing attempt to use the Capitol Hill menu as an artistic expression of Congressional angst, House Administration Chair Vernon J. Ehlers (R-MI) announced two revisions of menu entries today in a press conference: Crow Fries and Your Words Toast.

“I figured we’d be eating them anyway, so why not keep it real?” said Ehlers.

Back in March, 2003, representatives Bob Ney (R-OH) and Walter Jones (R-NC) announced that the fries in the Capitol Hill cafeteria would no longer be called “French,” but “Freedom,” in protest of France’s love of dictators.

But now, that spicy name tastes different.

A food service worker at the cafeteria explained: “We requested they consider a different word than ‘freedom’ because Congressmen, who don’t have good memories, saw ‘Freedom Toast’ and belligerantly accused our servers of liberal sarcasm that belittled their rhetoric on Iraq. We had to remind them on many separate occasions that we do not control the name of the items; they do. Lot’s of stale fries laying around. Lots of stale fries.”

Contrary to popular understanding, creative menu names outliving their time period at Capitol Hill is nothing new. In the nineties, a particular salad dressing was named “Blue Dress Delight.” When Reagan was in office, reps could enjoy an appetizer named “Ain’t fraid of Grenada Tomata,” and during Nixon, patrons could eat a “Victory Sandwich” or a “Washington Toast.”

What does come as a surprise, however, is the self-deprecating honesty of the new entries.

The spokeswoman for Bob Ney explained. “In a forty-hour session, they debated the pros and cons of renaming the fries Belgium Fries, since that’s where they came from in the first place. Rejected Quagmire Fries outright. They also considered Gotta Crack a Few Eggs to Make This Toast. But in the end, they decided on ‘crow’ to showcase their innate humility, sensibilities of humoresqueness, and how we are all one of da people, dig?”

Future appellation plans include renaming the cafeteria itself to “Box of Hungry Buttheads.” But the project is encountering resistance in the approval process over whether it should be phrased “Hungry Butthead Oasis,” to win the hearts and minds of Arabs.

July 31, 2006

New Op-Art Exhibition: To see or not to see the WMD?

Filed under: Iraq,News,Politics — secretmojo @ 9:52 pm

Experimental Chicago artist Canyu Sea launched a provocative illusory art exhibition at the Art Institute today featuring an Iraqi weapon of mass destruction that may—or may not—be there.

Depending on your political point of view (amongst other factors), you will see (or not see) a chemical bomb filled with toxic eggs.

“It’s remarkable,” said visitor Matt Frentelli. “My friend kept insisting that there was a bomb there, but no matter how I positioned my head, I couldn’t see it.”

Part of the exhibit are Viewpoints—little marks on the floor you and your friends can take turns standing on to conclude whether the view of the “bomb” is physical, or psychological. Nearly half of the visitors said the bomb was there, while the other half saw nothing, yet none concluded it was due to where they physically stood.

Floor Manager Simon Blade said, “We get a lot of visitors from Europe who think it’s just a clever joke because none of them nor any of their friends can see the bomb. We had a few Iraqis take a look at the exhibit, and none of them saw anything of interest either.”

It’s fascinating, explained Sea, when only one person of a group sees empty space. Sea watched, from the corner, a group of students on field trip. After some time looking and arguing with her friends, a teenager named Samantha eventually could make out a small outline of the “bomb.” By the end of their trip, Samantha was jumping up and down and pointing at the exhibit, saying, “Yes! I see it! I finally see it!”

Sea revealed only part of his method, citing “keeping a magician’s secret sacred.” He developed what he calls a Factual Ennui Distributor, which infuses a field of gullibility around the bomb area itself. Depending on one’s gullibility factor, a bomb may or may not show up. It sounds like jiggery-pokery, but it does indeed work: a non-scientific poll of the visitors entering and leaving produced a near match with the 50/50 split on the general public’s belief in the weapons in Iraq.

Many visitors could describe it in detail, with their descriptions matching others that came in later. But those who couldn’t see it would sometimes walk through it, to the dismay of those who did see. In contrast, those who saw the bomb typically tripped over it when trying to walk through it themselves.

Sea said he almost named it “American WMD,” but was afraid that no one would see his art at all.

When asked whether the bomb really was there, Sea said, “This is the most interesting part, in talking to reporters. I have said ‘yes,’ and I have said ‘no,’ but each and every time I read the paper, it always quotes me as saying ‘maybe,’ even in contridiction to the reporter’s own experience.”

So: is there really a chemical bomb at the Art Institute, and is it dangerous?

Maybe.

WMD, Yes or No?

Two pictures of the exhibit taken from the same camera in the same position. One snapped by my friend Missy, the other by my friend Joseph. Which one do you think you would see?

Surreal headline of the day

Filed under: Iraq,mediachumps,News — secretmojo @ 7:01 pm

This either proves that the headline writers at The Washington Times have a sense of humor, or no sense at all:

Army diverts funds to war

In other news: Microsoft allocated money to create software, American Airlines bought planes to fly, and Paris Hilton took time out to appear before camera.

July 15, 2006

Two weeks of catastrophe

Filed under: Iraq — secretmojo @ 7:18 pm

This is, plainly, the best article I have read in years.

If you have the stomach for it—and even if you don’t—read it in its entirety. The rather grim observation at the end comparing two weeks to three years packs quite a wallop.

Here’s a small sample of what’s to be learned:

Soldiers descended upon homes in a large compound, their boots trampling over mattresses in rooms the inhabitants did not enter with shoes on. Most of the wanted men were nowhere to be found, their women and children prevaricating about their locations. Some of their relatives were arrested instead. “That woman is annoying!” one young soldier complained about a mother’s desperate ululations as her son was taken from his house. “How do you think your mother would sound if they were taking you away?” a sergeant asked him.

July 12, 2006

CBS News pleads insanity for Haditha rape/murder

Filed under: Iraq,mediachumps — secretmojo @ 1:03 am

CBS News ran a report today questioning how honorably discharged Steven Green, one of the group soldiers accused of raping an Iraqi girl and setting her and her family on fire “with a serious psychiatric problem” could be let into the army in the first place. Sorry, no CBS News link yet, but if you’d like to taste the flavor of their ridiculous slant, you can try here.

This is fake criticism, fake investigative journalism; just fake all around.

I should tell you why, shouldn’t I? But I’m confident that you already have the acumen and curiosity about the world to know that this was a group act (the number is at least four, not one), that it occurred under the context of a war gone bad, and that previously, without a mental disorder—but most likely with a cognizant dis order from high places—prisoners have been soaked in urine, raped anally with any object at hand, forced to masturbate, stretched, dragged by jeeps, humiliated, beat, beat to death, and just plain murdered. Not to mention military decisions to obliterate towns and go on revenge killings.

So to even suggest that Green could be a) the only problem here, and b) a simple mistake of the military screening process, is an insult to my intelligence.

Yet CBS takes ignorance for granted, then puffs up its mighty chest and files an “indictment” of a military bureaucracy that failed to see that this crazy guy was destined to convince three other guys to rape, kill and set fire to some random family somewhere—with or without being handed the lawless impunity created by retaliation warfare and, by the way, the full support of a command hierarchy that will try to blame soldiers’ behavior on insurgents.

By approaching the story from this irrelevant one-man-to-blame (one-military-form-to-blame?) angle, CBS news has done it again: given you yet another excuse to feel sort of okay with a war that continues to create atrocities simply by existing. It’s not the constant fear of being fragged by Iraqis. It’s not the civil war. It’s not that most Iraqis want us gone, or that in the States (and all over the world) the war is highly unpopular with a purpose still being debated 3 years later.

And it certainly isn’t the fury against Arabs sparked by 9/11 and encouraged by our leaders, or that all the war crimes in Iraq have the consistent feature of being “misreported”, “overlooked” , and unattended to by the top brass.

It’s the screening process.

Here’s some wool, can you please place it over your eyes?

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