Powerline: Please Let Us Help


ABOVE: One of the reasons the show isn’t called ‘Informed Sources’

Amidst the torrent of busted kites, unstrung tennis rackets, mateless galoshes, and shoeboxes full of once-interesting stones cascading out of Powerline in the past day is the following typical statement — which they will never in a million years correct, because if they were to set such a precedent, they would have to correct every stupid and wrong thing they say (i.e., erase their entire six-year oeuvre, post by post and word for word, and then evaporate, leaving nothing but a staring white page and a note in tiny-faced MS Comic saying, “Powerline: Time Magazine’s 2004 Blog of the Year”):

“Misunderstood and mistranslated”

Some have made much of an alleged statement by Iraqi Prime Minister Maliki to the effect that he agreed with Barack Obama that U.S. troops should withdraw from Iraq on a 16 month timetable. The statement appears in an interview Maliki gave to the German magazine Der Spiegel.

However, a spokesman for Maliki has said that the Prime Minister’s remarks “were misunderstood, mistranslated and not conveyed accurately.” The spokesman explained that the possibility of troop withdrawal was based on the continued improvement of security.

Also bla, and bla, and oh yes, yatter-yatter and bla:

This is the position of the White House as set forth following a meeting last week between Maliki and President Bush. It is also the position of John McCain. Obama’s position (to the extent he has a consistent one) is different. He favors withdrawal pursuant to a timetable without regard to whether security continues to improve, though he might be willing to push back the exit date a bit.

As Max Boot explains, Maliki’s nebulous call for a “time horizon” for our departure, made by a politician attempting to navigate his way through Iraqi politics, is not the same thing as a call for the U.S. to be out of Iraq in 16 months, give or take, regardless of the situation on the ground. Nor is it the same thing as a call for the U.S. to begin effectuating such a pull-out.

Say, how about some nice, delicious coconut creme bla?

JOHN adds: It also appears that Der Spiegel has published two different versions of the Maliki interview. In the first one, the exchange went like this:

SPIEGEL: Would you hazard a prediction as to when most of the US troops will finally leave Iraq?

Maliki: As soon as possible, as far as we’re concerned. US presidential candidate Barack Obama is right when he talks about 16 months. Assuming that positive developments continue, this is about the same time period that corresponds to our wishes.

Spiegel apparently dropped that key qualifier from its Maliki quote after it was first published. Spiegel is a pretty hard-core left-wing publication, and its attitude toward our election is summed up pretty well on the cover its current issue, featuring the “Superstar” Barack Obama:

Meanwhile, amidst the fascinating… Oh wait, who ordered the double-super bla-ppuccino?

This is sort of a teapot tempest, I think. It’s easy to understand why Maliki wants to be seen as pressing for the departure of U.S. troops, now that things are going well. Further, it’s entirely reasonable for the Bush administration to be talking to Iraq’s government about a plan for withdrawing American troops. In fact, it would be rather absurd, given the progress now being made, not to do so. But there is an important difference between setting an arbitrary deadline for ridding ourselves of Iraq (or vice versa) regardless of conditions there, and…

But hold on, they’re almost done:

…and drawing down troops–as everyone wants to do–as it becomes possible to do so because we have won.

The even more important point is that Obama has been demanding a more or less immediate withdrawal from Iraq since at least October 2005. If his counsel had been followed then, or at any time up to the present, the results would have been disastrous. It is only because Obama’s defeatist position did not prevail, and the administration instead implemented the opposite strategy as urged by John McCain, that it is now reasonable to talk about withdrawing most or all troops by late 2009.

Meanwhile, we shockingly and joltingly find that they are just yakkity-yakking about the usual Republican yakkity-bla which they oorgle and yarble about to such uncorrected extent, year after year, with nobody ever taking a big paintbrush and painting their extremely wrong blog with a big ‘They Are Wrong,’ so that reasonable people can happen by and not be fooled by the fusty-crusty chatter which is all they have ever produced in their entire silly, useless public lives of yobbity-yobbing and hummana-hummaning — i.e., tirelessly pointing out with every yawp of breath in their lungs, while wearing ties and respectable-looking jackets, that a titanically compromised administration or Republican Party source said X, and that dumb crap is therefore true, and clear thinking and good information is therefore false. For look out, here we are again:

Iraqi Leader Meets Obama, Calls For U.S. Troops Out by end of 2010
By Nancy A. Youssef and Nicholas Spangler | McClatchy Newspapers

BAGHDAD — After talks with Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama on Monday, Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al Maliki reaffirmed that Iraq wants U.S. combat troops to withdraw from Iraq by the end of 2010, a few months later than Obama had proposed.


“Barak Obama showed his support to this government,” Dabbagh said. “He came to listen to our views and the views of the prime minister. And the prime minister gave him his point of view about the presence of U.S. forces and . . . what we want from the forces.”

“We had a very constructive discussion,” Obama said upon leaving the meeting at the prime minister’s private residence in Baghdad’s fortified Green Zone.

Dear Powerline, We will cover for you if you ever wish to escape the pressures of celebrity and live again as humans, with evenings and weekends and grassy barbecues with dogs catching Frisbees, etc. LET US KNOW.


Comments: 58


This continues a trend we’ve seen developing for a few years now–focusing on the minute and trivial, examining documents with a microscope, parsing words and phrases to the point of self-parody, examining countertops for signs of high-grade granite, etc., etc. They’ve got absolutely nothing, they know it, and now they’ve reverted to the only thing they’ve ever really been good at, which is bitching about trivialities.


Waiting for assrocket to make some statement about “left-wing hate sites distorting the truth” in 3…2…1…


Did Maliki have anything to say about Obama’s birth certificate? ‘Cause I was just wondering.


They ever correct the GLOBAL WARMING BOGUS!!!!!!!!!!! post from Friday?


I hear the troop-haters in the White House are mumbling about ‘Aspirational Time Horizons’ for surrendering to the Terrace. Is nothing sacred? Weapons of mass irony, etc.


Oh, and how could I let the opportunity to use Tuchus Tomahawk™ pass by?


Somewhere in the haystack of mistaken predictions, poor judgement, lies, and 100% wrongheadedness, the righttards are certain they will find a smidgen of something that will prove them right. Wrong again! You’d think after hitting their heads with hammers for the past eight years they’d have an ache. No such luck.


Anyone who has watched this administration and it’s republican party enablers deal with iraq over the last six years simply must come to the conclusion that the ONLY goal is, and ever has been, the permanant presence of american military power on the mid east oil fields. There is no other possible conclusion.

The reason they cannot state the mission, the goal, the end state, the exit strategy – the reason that their only response to any proposition – winning, losing, making progress, losing ground, sunshine or rain – is that american troops MUST stay in iraq indefinitely is simply that there is NO goal beyond simply that.

Casualties don’t matter. Cost doesn’t matter. Certainly the IRAQIS don’t matter. What matters is all that combat power is there, right in the middle, between saudi, kuwait, iran and israel.

The cost of the oil doesn’t matter, as long as the oil flows, and american oil companies are enriched by it.

The oil producing nations can make billions from our thirst for huge quantities of imported oil, but they must not ever be in a position where they could threaten our supply.

The costs and casualties are acceptable. Withdrawing the occupation force is not. And viewed through that lens, their actions are not only obvious, but entirely predictable…


Dragon-King Wangchuck

Even their ass-covering qualifiers make them look like idiots:

However, a spokesman for Maliki has said that the Prime Minister’s remarks “were misunderstood, mistranslated and not conveyed accurately.”

Two grafs down in the linked article:

“Who they choose as their president is the Americans’ business. But it’s the business of Iraqis to say what they want. And that’s where the people and the government are in general agreement: The tenure of the coalition troops in Iraq should be limited,” he said.

“Those who operate on the premise of short time periods in Iraq today are being more realistic,” al-Maliki said.

Although you do have to admit that the post title basically says it all

Poweline: Misunderstood and mistranslated

Malfunctioning Glenn Reynolds Robot

Heh. Indeed. We’re winning! We’re winning, dammit! Why can’t you see that We’re winning? We’re so totally winning! I just know it! I just know it! We’ve just got to finish the job! Mickey Kaus says so! That’s the ticket! That’s why Obama has to pivot on Iraq, just after he finishes dealing with his oozing sense of entitlement, that I say he has and everyone listens to me because I’m oh so smart and hip and trendy and We’re winning!, dammit, We’re winning! Why doesn’t anyone listen? Why doesn’t anyone care? McCain is great! I love McCain! Why doesn’t anyone love McCain? Why doesn’t anyone realize We’re Winning? Why, dammit, why? WHY? (sobs uncontrollably)


[updated the (previously rather weak) quote from the McClatchy piece]


Collection of headlines at CNN.com right now:

-Portuguese halt Madeleine McCann inquiry
-NY Times rejects McCain editorial
-Cafferty: Why do Europeans perfer Obama?
-Italians sunbathe as drowned girls lie on beach

There are other ones obviously, but I thought these four appearing together were pretty funny…


I thought the robot was supposed to endlessly repeat…

Dragon-King Wangchuck

I thought the robot was supposed to endlessly repeat…

I thought we were suppposed to read the whole thing…


This is really knock-out stuff. Maybe the R’s should read up on Manchuko to see how to do puppet-government right.

Very Serious Internet Organizations who are Serious — you’re goddamned right. There’s only one unchanging explanation that fits all the facts. However, I giggle like a girl each time one of the fake explanations gets blown away. So far, I count:
* OMG WMD! (oops, none of those)
* OMG TERRISTS! (oops, they came to Iraq after us. Alt: let’s pay them to not blow us up)
* OMG SADDAM! (oops, we torture, kill civvies … too)
* OMG DEMOCRACY (but not when you want something we don’t want)

I do think the future could hold a coup in Iraq, like the one that took down the Diem government in South Vietnam. The US wants a more compliant government. Maybe some individual with more power who can make broad sweeping decisions on a timetable we can live with. Someone who won’t be dumped from office by ignorant peasants. You know, like Saddam.


Man, that draft went wrong… Fixed now, btw.


Someone please take this one apart for me. I don’t understand what the wingnut beef is. Is it that there’s some implication on Maliki’s part that the surge has done some good, but it was dastardedly omitted in the second, or third?, translation by the lie-brul Marxist media? Or is it that Maliki seems to agree more with Obama X (16 mos., give or take) than with Johnnie “Hundred-Years- War” McInsane on how soon the US might be more than welcome to get the heck out already? I’m losing it.


Say what you will about Hindrocket and Kristol, but they’ve figured out a way to be wrong on an almost constant basis and still get paid for it. That, in itself, is pure (evil) genius.


Wow. That’s the worst case of Assrocketosis I’ve ever seen.

And the elephant doesn’t look so good either.


By the way, calling SPIEGEL “left-wing” is a case of “even the liberal TNR”-itis. They used to be liberal. Now they are, at best, neo-liberal with hardcore neocon bullshit regularly supplied by Hendryk “Kill all Arabs” Broder. Then again, Hindrocket probably believes that Obama is left-wing…


I thought the robot was supposed to endlessly repeat…

That is only one way a robot can malfunction. Another is to show emotion.

(Disclaimer: I am not the MGRR, nor do I speak for it.)


It makes me sad to be a Minnesotan. We’re not all like these yutzes. In fact, most of us aren’t like these yutzes.

F’r’instance — we’re sane!

Grand Moff Texan

Poweline: Misunderstood and mistranslated

Is it available in English? I don’t see the ‘union-jack’ button.



Juggs sez:


You can’t make this stuff up.


You gotta hand it to McCain and his minions: No one bought “we’re winning,” so rather than join the human race they’ve doubled down and are going with “We WON!”


If the GOP is so gosh-darned sure that these wars will be worthwhile, why can’t they get together with Haliburton and do them on spec?


When I need help placing Der Spiegel’s hard-core leftism in a broader context of German political culture, I turn to the Power Line Forum.

The Germans love to swoon for rock-star socialists. Wonder why Obama didn’t suggest a torch light rally through the Brandenberg Gate? That would have really turned out the crowds.

JFK and Reagan generated big crowds because they stood between the German people and those who would rape them. An easy and cheap choice. America was paying the bills.

Now that the Americans have saved the Germans from themselves and from the communist hordes, what does Obama offer them? An excuse to revel in their love of socialism. Wow, Obama! You go dude!

Now I know.



Juggs sez:


You can’t make this stuff up.

Some people have way, way too much time on their hands.


Y’know, we’re reading (and posting comments to) a blog that exists basically to find and mock examples of particularly stupid writing from dull-witted reactionaries. So I don’t think “too much time on their hands” is fair.


So, to sum up:

– Obama is a defeatist for wanting US Troops out of Iraq sometime in 2010, even though the elected gevernment of Iraq want US troops out of Iraq sometime in 2010.

– Global warming is a hoax because a major scientific organization reversed their position and said they no longer believe that it’s true, even though they didn’t.

– Obama’s birth certificate is a forgery, which proves…well, I’m still having trouble figuring out what that’s supposed to prove, unless it turns out that his mother wasn’t an American citizen after all, or she really wasn’t his birth mother.

Did I miss anything? It’s hard to keep up with the nuttiness sometimes.


Y’know, we’re reading (and posting comments to) a blog that exists basically to find and mock examples of particularly stupid writing from dull-witted reactionaries. So I don’t think “too much time on their hands” is fair.

True, but take a quick look at Atlas Juggs’ detailed proof of the “forged” Obama birth certificate. Somebody spent an emormous amount of time and effort to prove…something. It’s incredibly impressive, in its way – if only they could channel that energy and do something useful with it.


@christian h.:

By the way, calling SPIEGEL “left-wing” is a case of “even the liberal TNR”-itis.

Not only that. During the Democratic primaries, Der Spiegel reliably parrotted the Clinton camp’s propaganda, apparently because of the personal preference of Spiegel’s moronic Washington correspondent, Gabor Steingart, who explained to the German readers several times that and why Obama could never possibly win the Democratic primaries, let alone the presidential election. Some choice quotes from him:

“All of those people who’ve been dreaming of America’s first black president now have to slowly wake up. It’ll happen one day, hopefully, but not in this election. And perhaps his name will be Barack Obama. But that first black president will have a more mature personality than that which Obama, 46, can offer American voters today.” (The End of the Obama Revolution)

“But the Iowa snow king has scant hope of reaching the White House. He’s too young, too inexperienced, too vague, and for many Americans, too black. His magic words about the era of change, of hope, of an America he will unite — all that will evaporate like morning mist.” (Obama’s Victory in Never-Never Land)

“In fact, Obama’s most dangerous land mines are hidden in foreign policy. A quick withdrawal from Iraq? Sounds great. But the mistake of having started this war in the first place cannot be corrected by ending it in a mad rush to get out of Iraq. A rapid withdrawal of the US military would most likely be followed by a bloody civil war. Al-Qaida would manage to sink its teeth into Iraq once and for all. Iran would rejoice. And Osama bin Laden and Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad would be the real winners of the 2008 American presidential election.” (Change You Can’t Believe In)

So that’s your “hard-core left-wing publication” for you. When will Gabor start his own blog on The Corner?

(In case our American friends are wondering about the cover, it’s an allusion to the German variant of “American Idol” called “Deutschland sucht den Superstar” – Germany seeks the super star. On the cover, it “meets” the super star. Make of that what you will. Der Spiegel has of course not stuck to Steingart’s idiotic predictions.)


And Doctorb for the win!!!!

At least S,N! brings teh funny (and we commenters do our best to kill it repeatedly with a pointy stick.)


I, for one, think this “Techdude” person may be on to something…


Re: the Obama birth certificate

That is one thing I love about the fringe media. The default position(s) is(are) that the MSM is either liberal and biased or lying to everyone and part of vast conspiracy to mislead and distort the “Truth.” Yet the fringe media will fall all over themselves believing and spreading obvious crackpot ideas from every random Joe Schmoe or “techdude” out there.

Some of it is pure dishonesty and calculated obviously to advance some larger agenda and it is implicitly banking on the willful ignorance of their consumers. But, on the other hand, some people really run with this stuff because they think the mass of society needs to know the “Truth” about these things.

I wonder how much the typical sites mocked by our humble narrators at SN! falls into each of these two categories.


The best part about techdude is that he is working off of an electronic file supplied on DailyKos, yet he act as if he has some sort of document in his hands.

And when you look at his resume, it seems a little…stacked?

I’m willing to bet that techdude, isn’t.


fadegeophile said,

July 22, 2008 at 0:45

The best part about techdude is that he is working off of an electronic file supplied on DailyKos, yet he act as if he has some sort of document in his hands.

Yep… that’s what makes his analysis entirely bogus. Unless he happened to use the same exact scanner and imaging utility as DKos (…or I assume it was originally from the Obama campaign and/or major media outlet), there’s always going to be subtle differences, especially with the RGB heatmaps.

Our Dead Selves

Gad, I love the name “techdude”! I wish I came up with something that original!


Obama’s birth certificate is a forgery, which proves…well, I’m still having trouble figuring out what that’s supposed to prove, unless it turns out that his mother wasn’t an American citizen after all, or she really wasn’t his birth mother.

Oh but yes. B. Hussein Obama’s mother is a huge Achilles’ heel for his campaign. Questions abound. Where was Stanley Ann Dunham born? Was it Ft. Leavenworth, Kansas, or Wichita, Kansas? Which one was it? It cannot be both. She had a man’s first name. How could she be B. Hussein Obama’s mother if she had a man’s name? Mother’s don’t have men’s names; they have women’s names. Finally—and even though it pains me to go into this, it would be irresponsible not to—why was her body cremated? Were B. Hussein Obama and his Jakarta-born half-sister trying to hide something when they scattered her ashes in the Hawaiian jungle?

Techdude has the COLB covered. Someone tell Biodude his services are needed.


I, for one, think this “Techdude” person may be on to something…

His credentials certainly are impressive. I’m sure he must have spent literally dozens of dollars acquiring all of those certifications.

My favorite part of the Techdude saga is the dead bunny in the mailbox and the slashed tires. It’s almost as if he’s getting too close…


I prefer to let Max Boot explain to me what brown people mean when they talk, rather than actually examine the plain language of said brown people.


Mother’s don’t have men’s names




The jig is up! And gone!


Techdude actually has an Animated Kerning .gif!!!

I bow to the majesty of the unmockable.


I’m almost surprised that Wingnuttia hasn’t proclaimed that (US-installed, US-supported) al Maliki’s concurring with Obama means that HE’s one of the Tear-Her-ists of the Axis O’Eeeeevil. What with Obama being a secret radical Mooslim & all, I mean.

Hmm – hasn’t Iraq been asking the US to GTFO for a few years now?

I get a funny feeling that the “timetable” of 16-months may tend to become rather “elastic” (but only in one direction) once Obama gets into the Oval Office – as in, for “months” read “years” … investment-wise, Big Oil & OPEC have done a stellar job of making America their bitch in recent years & will apply the thumbscrews without a qualm if their neo-colonial “investment” in Iraq’s black gold is threatened by a rapid withdrawal of troops.
High levels of demand around the globe have neutered the US trump-card as a Big Spender – they can just keep on turning the tap down & giggle as America begs for more – an especially effective move in cold months.


The ‘spokesman for Maliki’ who originally said that the story was mistranslated seems to actually be working for CENTCOM. Juan Cole covers that weird angle in some detail.


mikey, you’re bang on. McCain let it slip. You’re there for the long haul.

As for Der Spiegel being far left… you need to be in one mad fucking world for that to be true.


you guys got it soooooooooooo wrong.
I am an accredited experts on calendars and it is well known in our expert circles that 16 months of the Arabic calendar equals to 100 years in the American calendar. Maliki totally supports McCain on that one.

Rugged in Montana

Osama’s birth certificate is false because Muslims aren’t born, per se, they are delivered in a non-Christian birth ceremony, so you know its a lie right from the get-go. We hear in The Heartland no that a real President will be a reflection of G*d’s image, white, male, Christian and old, which stacks the odds against your Derrick Osama (and Hitlery, who G*d will make as his vice-President…..now you no why they use that word “vice” there!). Why don’t you communist LIE-bruls just surrender now, so we can save the expense of an election? You KNOW that George Willard Bush is gonna be the President, so, enjoy it like a rape victim, and such like.


I dunno, the whole Obama campaign just smells wrong.


I think Obama is really a woman.


The credentials of that “computer forensics expert” are really laughable. I remember asking a secret service agent several years ago about a handwriting expert that apparently had very impressive credentials. In fact, in his opinion, they were worthless, since the organizations “certifying” the expert were mainly mail order charlatans. The “expert’s” coclusions were unreliable, and grossly overreaching.
The birth certificate guy looks pretty much the same on a close reading. He’s a “certificated (sic) legal investigator and licensed private investigator” I’ve never heard of a “certificated legal investigator” and it would be interesting to know what jurisdiction licensed him as a PI, and what qualifications he had to present. Also, what board certifies “forensic computer examiners”? These qualifications look like they came from the inside covers of matchbooks and comics, with ads for sea monkeys and decoder rings on the same page. Maybe Pam could provide a list of cases and courts which have received her “expert’s” testimony on the authenticity of documents. A man with his qualifications should have that list at hand since it is a required mandatory disclosure for any expert testifying in federal court. “Irrefutable, empirical evidence” indeed.


Obama’s mother’s original Social Security Number Application



A man with his qualifications should have that list at hand since it is a required mandatory disclosure for any expert testifying in federal court.

Didn’t you hear? Somebody put a mutilated dead rabbit on his porch. That tells you more than a list of a million billion testifications!


Here’s the question:

Just HOW mutilated was the rabbit?

I mean, was it gutted? Good. You can just open it up, cut along the backbone on both sides, and lay it open on the cutting board. (C’mon, it’s a goddam RABBIT, folks) You can just cut the breasts free and the legs, along with the tenderloins along the top.

Now, cook up some rice. Cut up the bunny meat and sautee with onions, green peppers and musrooms, season with salt, pepper and garlic, toss it with some fresh herbs and serve on top of some rice.

Where’s the downside?



Just HOW mutilated was the rabbit?

Where’s the downside?

Ahem I say!



May I just say, oh my brothers, that this post has the ever-so-slight flavor of Nasdat without actually being in Nasdat?


(comments are closed)