February 2008


“No other act can project simultaneous hints that he is in the act of playing Commodore of the Yacht Club, Joseph Goebbels, Robert Mitchum, Maverick, Savonarola, the nice prep school kid next door, and the snows of yesteryear,”

Norman Mailer on William F. Buckley, Jr.
 

One of the things about growing older is that, one by one, all the iconic figures of your childhood and early adult life die off. Over the years, you watch them parade by on the television, and slowly come to realize that a whole generation of people whose existence you just took for granted is passing away.

Today, William F. Buckley, Jr.—patriarch of the American conservative movement, perennial pundit, and (almost self-parodying) icon of erudition—died at home. He died, at 82, as he would have wanted—quite possibly writing a final witty column for publication. Author of 45 books spanning the literary spectrum and countless articles and speeches, he was found in his study, slumped at his desk. He died, it would seem, as he lived: fighting the conservative fight in the public arena with, we can presume, wit, poise, and civility.

Next to his (in)famous erudition, it was perhaps his civility that most stands out today. In the present partisan climate, replete with vicious personal attacks, rage-fueled diatribes, and emotional ‘arguments’ on each side of the aisle, Bill Buckley stood aloof, refusing to abandon reason for passion. As others flung handfuls of mud, hoping some might stick out of the sheer volume, he refused to be hurried, and fired his own measured shots at his own pace.

Buckley’s greatest gift was his infectious love of life and political discourse, which led many of his rivals and critics to nonetheless enjoy his company. He was a sort of political scamp, impishly speaking his mind and sparking controversy. Just when you’d think you’d figured him out, suddenly he’d issue a statement, perfectly consistent, but utterly different from your assumptions. A moral conservative who proposed legalizing drugs; a former supporter of segregation who freed the conservative mainstream of the John Birchers and Randian Objectivists; a staunchly conservative pundit who enjoyed the company of many on the left: Bill Buckley was frequently an iconoclastic icon.

Perhaps his self-deprecating wit is best exhibited, as the New York Times obituary remarks, by a line Buckley wrote for a KGB official in “Who’s on First:”

Do you ever read the National Review, Jozsef? It is edited by this young bourgeois fanatic.

All jests aside, William F. Buckley, Jr. was the very opposite of a fanatic. Where fanatics are notoriously humorless about their cause, he was all infectious wit and merriment. Where fanatics eschew the company of those who refuse to see the light, he reveled in it. And where fanatics make it clear by every action that human life is subordinate to the holy cause, Bill Buckley made it clear by his every action that the conservative cause exists to serve human life. To him one did not live to be conservative, one was conservative in order to live to the fullest. As if orchestrating a life-long jest this “hammer of the secular humanists” was a vigorous and life-long champion of real humanism.

In paradisum deducant te Angeli;
in tuo adventu suscipiant te martyres,
et perducant te in civitatem sanctam Ierusalem.

Chorus angelorum te suscipiat,
et cum Lazaro quondam paupere
aeternam habeas requiem.

Resquiat in pace, Bill!

Hillary & Filiberto Ojeda Rios
Hillary and Filiberto Ojeda Rios, FALN and Puerto Rican Nationalist

 

Every nation has to either be with us, or against us. Those who harbor terrorists, or who finance them, are going to pay a price.”

Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton (September 13, 2001)

 

Ms. Clinton has issued her declarations against terrorists in this 2008 campaign video:

Debra Burlingame, the sister of Capt. Burlingame, pilot of American Flight 77 which kamakazied into the Pentagon on September 11, 2001, in a recent article in the Wall Street Journal (“The Clinton’s Terror Pardon”) laments the decidedly non-stalwart position of Hillary Clinton with regard to FALN terrorists. She writes additionally in a blog about Bill Clinton’s FALN pardons.

In the case of the FALN, despite the perps admitting to over 130 bombings; killing 6 people and injuring 86 others; and violating many state and federal weapons regulations; all it took to earn the support of Ms. Clinton was the promise of election support from the Puerto Rican hispanic voters in New York. The Bill Clinton pardon of 11 FALN terrorists was suspiciously coincident with the election campaign of Hillary Clinton as Senator of New York. Even former Clinton advisor Dick Morris suggests that the timing was not an accident. What is more outrageous is that President Clinton pardoned the FALN members against the advice of the FBI, the families and victims of the bombings, the Federal Bureau of Prisons, two US Attorneys General, New York Police Commissioner Howard Safir, and even his own Attorney General, Janet Reno. In fact, the U.S. House and Senate condemned the pardons, 311-41 in the House and by a 95-2 margin in the Senate.

The President has the ability to pardon by right. It’s not even slightly equivocal. There is no legal problem here that these pardons were made specifically to enable his wife to become a New York Senator. Once you are a President, you are entitled to use that right to pardon in any way you see fit. Of course, every President is first a politician, so I’m not optimistic in general; but one would think that in the case of terrorists operating on American soil, that some vestige of common sense and morality would apply.

The situation today, however, is that Hillary is NOT the president. So there is little chance of her swinging a Presidential pardon for terrorists today. (It is unlikely George W. Bush will pardon some terrorist to further her presidential aspirations.) No, the problem is not today, but 2012. The team of Clinton and Clinton has shown their true colors. What happens when Hillary trades America’s collective security for the Islamic vote in her re-election? Best to keep her from the Presidency in the first place.

After the big kerfuffle at Columbia over Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s visit, the issue of Iran’s nuclear program has once again come to the fore of media attention (though it hasn’t seemed to make in onto Mr. Ahmadinejad’s blog recently). Besides the utterly bankrupt position of hiding your head in the sand and pretending it isn’t so (much like Mr. Cline on Obama’s run for the presidency), the number of options remaining on Iran have dwindled tremendously. Here they are, as I see them and why they’re all bad. In our long standing tradition of multi-part series on complicated issues, I’ll be looking at America’s options in four parts. Unfortunately for us in America, they range from bad to worse…

Option #2: Invade Iran.

The neo-conservative blowhards like Norman Podhoretz have their own solution for Iran: invasion. We can repeat invasion of Iraq, only this time Iran really has WMDs! Wait a minute, the National Intelligence Estimate says they probably don’t. Nevermind. As the Angry Political Optimist pointed out, the NIE can be conveniently ignored because we know Iran’s history as a bunch of very bad people.

The irony is that the neo-conservatives aren’t the only one to be rattling their sabers. Even Bernard Kouchner, the French foreign minister and avoid socialist (and founder of Doctors Without Borders) has come out in favor of preparing for war with Iran. Mr. Kouchner said, “We have to prepare for the worst, and the worst is war.” His boss French president Nicholas “Look-at-my-supermodel-mistress” Sarkozy, noted that the world faces a choice between “an Iranian bomb or the bombardment of Iran.” You know, when Mr. Sarkozy isn’t hitting the bottle at the G8 summit. Over in London, the ex-prime minister Tony Blair has refused to take the option of invasion off the table.

The problem is that this option is a non-starter. Since it’s suspected that Iran has a secret nuclear program and we have no idea where those facilities are (assuming they exist at all), there’s no way a Israeli-style air campaign could eliminate Iran’s nuclear capabilities. Likewise, no matter how bad-ass the British SAS is compared to those pussies in the US Army Rangers (so the Brits’ claim), without accurate intelligence on the location of Iranian SNM (that’s special nuclear material), all of the Richard Marcinko’s in the world aren’t worth a hill of beans.

This means that any invasion of Iran would need to involve lots and lots of ground troops. According to our friends over at globalsecurity.org Iran has about 350k troops in their army. Now granted, 200k of those are conscripts who probably can’t fight for shit, but that leaves them with about 150k serious professional soldiers. This is no third world bunch of thugs with guns like in Somalia, the Iranians are well-trained and outfit with *lots* of kit — medium tanks, main battle tanks, sophisticated anti-tank weapons, missiles combat helicopters and aircraft. Most frightening is that the upper ranks of the Iranian officer corps knows how to conduct a serious fight — after all, they were all junior officers in the war against Iraq. Any ground invasion of Iran will be very, very messy, and lots of young men will be coming home in flag-draped coffins.

So, despite the saber rattling that’s been coming out of London and Paris, the UK and France cannot credibly threaten Iran by themselves (especially with the British forces tied down in Iraq and Afghanistan). US involvement is required to invade Iran. And with the US Army and Marine Corps also tied down in Iraq and Afghanistan, the only way the US can invade Iran is to abandon Iraq to the militias, insurgents and al-Qaeda. While the irony of the neo-conservative Iraq hawks endorsing “cut and run” for the purpose of throwing down with Iran is amusing, the utter chaos that would be unleashed on Iraq as a result of such a policy would not be.

As a bit of variety for our readers, I’ve decided to throw together a periodic humor piece inspired by Simon Travaglia’s BOFH. It’s not exactly an angry rant… but it is Friday — you deserve a few laughs. For those new to the HoS series, the first episode is here.

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It’s group meeting time: an hour and a half of boredom (if you’re lucky) punctuated by The Advisor spewing out a litany of things that you need to try in your research (even though some of them are so obviously nonsense that you wonder whether the old man is reading any of the updates you send him). Since Javier and I nearly got busted a few weeks back for playing Spellcast (right before I cast Finger of Death too!) on our laptops during the group meeting, we’ve been playing it safe and actually paying attention during the meeting.

I have no need to tell you how painful that is.

After listing to The Advisor politely discuss research with Amy, he and Sasha nearly come to blows over a new idea that he’s proposing. Sasha is firmly convinced it won’t work, while the old man thinks its a sure thing. Finally, Sasha storms up to the whiteboard and slams out a few lines of math that’s utterly incomprehensible to mere mortals (and barely comprehensible to me) and The Advisor is suddenly left speechless. Sasha was right and he was wrong. After a embarrassingly long pause, The Advisor suddenly squeaks out, “Uh………. continue on as you proposed, I guess.”

I suppose that’s what happens when you get nailed dead to rights. Or strictly speaking, when you nail the old man dead to rights. When you nail me dead to rights, I get revenge a few weeks later.

After a quick round with Javier and the first year, the old man finally gets to me.

“I found this paper in PRB. I think its a good idea and you should implement it.”

“But…”

“That’s that. I have a faculty meeting that I’m already late to,” as he leaves the room in an awful hurry.

After a nice long lunch and several margaritas with Javier at Relleno Caliente (Mexican food is the fifth food group), I head back to the lab to look over the paper. Now, perhaps it’s just the margaritas speaking (but on “Dollar Margarita” day, is there any other option?), but while the paper has some pretty results, I can barely figure out what they’re doing, let alone reproduce the results or integrate them into our work.

Actually, it’s not me (or the margaritas) at all, it’s Phys. Rev. B. As a service to various physicists looking to artificially inflate their publication counts the APS has graciously obliged by providing a “Rapid Communications” section in their various Physical Review journals. Designed to help get “breaking” results into print, the crafty editors limit the article length to four pages…. which once you’ve included the title, the abstract, and the list of references you’re down to about three. As a result, there’s about enough room to say, “We did something cool, here’s a pretty picture and trust us on the details.”

Caveat lector.

As far as I can tell, the authors are obscure Bulgarians, from some equally obscure school known back in the Soviet days as The People’s Glorious University in Dobrich. None of these Bulgarians have managed to publish a more substantial paper in English any time since the fall of the Berlin wall. Sure, they have long treatises in Russian and Bulgarian, but that does me no good whatsoever, since my foreign language skills are limited to being able to order a beer. Reading their paper leaves me only leaves me with more of a feeling that these guys are charlatans, and even if they weren’t, the idea is useless for us anyway.

So why did the old man give me the paper? A careful reread of the abstract reveals that the authors’ poor command of the English language might accidentally confuse someone who didn’t read the paper into thinking it was relevant to our work.

Statement 1: Anyone who read only the abstract might think the paper is relevant.

Statement 2: Anyone who read the paper would know the work isn’t relevant and would have a strong suspicion that the authors are crackpots.

Conclusion: The Advisor didn’t read the paper… and it’s only four pages long!

Theory: The Advisor doesn’t read any of the papers he gives us…

… and the only way to test a theory is an experiment. I wander down to The Love Nest, since I don’t want anyone disturbing the work I’m about to perform. It takes me a few hours, but I manage to knock together a quick theory paper. It begins with an impressive abstract, a few convincing looking plots (should The Advisor actually flip to page three) and is filled out with incomplete, contradictory and poorly written theorems. Overall, it would fit in quite nicely at the “crackpot session” of a conference, except for several choice lyrics from the musical artist Gunther (Link is NSFW -ed.) which I have scattered throughout the text.

Another half-an-hour gives me an fake “new issue” announcement from a Phys Rev journal I know the old man publishes in, faked sender and all. A week later, at the next group meeting, he hands the article to Sasha telling her to “study it carefully.” Within the hour she’s at his office cursing in whatever language it is she speaks (and no, it’s not Bulgarian). All I can make out is something about a “Tra la la.”

Excellent.

It’s looking more and more like the campaign of HRC believed their own “inevitability” line and didn’t bother to plan past Super Tuesday. Tell a line long enough and you start to believe it yourself and stop thinking about what you might need to do if your “inevitability” turns out not to be so inevitable after all and the opposition doesn’t cooperate by playing their assigned role of loser. There’s a name for this problem: Victory Disease. Believe it or not, the Wikipedia page is pretty solid, so I’ll quote it for you (with some slight edits):

The signs are:

  • Arrogance, overconfidence, and complacency,
  • Use of previously victorious patterns of fighting, and not developing new tactics to anticipate enemy advances,
  • Stereotypes of enemies, underestimating enemies,
  • Ignorance of contrary intelligence or refusal to recognize it.

While the winning side grows complacent, arrogant, feeling invincible, the enemy adapts. Military disaster ensues. While “victory disease” does not automatically foretell failure, it is a strong indicator. The term applies outside the military world.

The deep irony is that HRC and her team got a heck of a case before any actual victories.

This should sound familiar: It’s essentially the Donald Plan (Rumsfeld that is) for post-invasion Iraq. But, as he said famously at the time “it would be weeks, not months.” Now he was right about formal large unit operations but that doesn’t change the misleading nature of the quote, which was widely believed to mean “just like Desert Storm,” i.e., no long occupation, no big bill, no casualties, etc. We all know how well that turned out. Lots of people whose jobs it is to know better were telling the then-SecDef and those above him that things were going to be trouble. The invasion could have been more difficult than it was but it was not seriously in doubt. The post-invasion, on the other hand…. Well let’s just say that such things are complicated and cannot be left for improvisation. You need a plan for what happens when things don’t go the way they should.

Well HRC has fallen into the same trap. Her campaign’s been noting things like the fact that the Texas delegate allocation rules are arcane and perverse. Well, that may be, but one would presume that it was her campaign’s job to find out about such things and plan for them, rather than whinge about it down the line. And she’s one to talk about arcane and perverse rules manipulation, what with changing her mind on the Florida and Michigan primaries. Again, she’s got a fig leaf of a point but was only pro these states when it looked like it was going to be good for her. Before that, who cares? She agreed to—but then reneged on—having her name removed from the ballot.

Whether this was simply due to carelessness or some other motive I don’t know. It doesn’t matter. The message of the 2000 election is that victories based on “strategery” and procedural tricks executed by one’s partisans who have multiple relationships undermine the legitimacy of the election. Sound familiar? They need to be avoided and the system upheld, i.e., be both fair and seem to be fair. Clearly the Florida and Michigan issue is a problem and, most likely, the best thing to do is to hold a caucus after the last scheduled primary. Given how chaotic this primary season has been, it’s not at all clear if it will be worthless or amazingly relevant, so by trying to push to the head of the line Florida and Michigan may well have gotten what they wanted by boosting their relevance. That would be a bit perverse, too, but poetic justice deserves its own poetic justice now and then.

Other things:

  • Speeches don’t put food on the table. Oh really? (I suppose it’s true since the presidential pension would be quite sufficient.)
  • States and voters “don’t count.” (See “Rove” and “base”.)
  • A senior staffer really known for loyalty above anything else who spent more time watching soap operas in her office, burning through money, and then famously said “screw this, Joey doesn’t want me!” when her son asked for his Dad before bedtime when things got bad. Or maybe we’re just lead to believe she said that? And if so, what does it say about HRC’s “people”? That they will stiff her when the going gets tough? That HRC can’t discipline her staff appropriately? All of the above, most likely, but an inability to appropriately discipline staff—particularly those who are longtime friends with demographically appealing bios—sounds pretty familiar too.
  • Rampant playing of the “two for one” card while still talking about being “her own woman,” i.e., trying to have it both ways. (At least this one is new.)

Don’t get me wrong, I don’t see some kind of superhero in Obama, or McCain, for that matter. They’re both more stirring than HRC, but ultimately I’m enough of a realist to know that every president steps in the doggie doo eventually. Were he to become president, I’m sure BHO would have his share of scandals in his administration. One of the virtues of a long campaign is show just what kind of person you are when you step in it, and by that score, HRC isn’t showing up too well.

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ObFascism Tag: Look up some of Hitler’s famous quote about how well Operation Barabarossa would go: “Bolshevism will collapse as a house of cards.”

George Washington, Feb. 22, 1732 – Dec. 14, 1799

I hope I shall possess firmness and virtue enough to maintain what I consider the most enviable of all titles, the character of an honest man.

Government is not reason; it is not eloquent; it is force. Like fire, it is a dangerous servant and a fearful master.

I walk on untrodden ground. There is scarcely any part of my conduct which may not hereafter be drawn into precedent.

—George Washington (various sources)
 

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George Washington seems a strange choice for this series, which is (after all) about those forgotten greats. How can we include a figure so well known, so omnipresent, and so publicly venerated as George Washington: Founder of the Country, First President, First in Hearts of His Countrymen, etc.?

But fame is as a great a peril as obscurity if our goal is to remember the man and not the legend. And Washington is great precisely because he was a man—a man of his time and class—and not a myth. He was not the flawless saint of the classic “cherry tree” story. He deceived others from time to time (though perhaps only after deceiving himself). He was, at times, guilty of poor judgment, of jealousy, of passionate anger, of greed for wealth that lead to involvement with speculative schemes.

And for all his modest demurements, and socially correct (for the time) public rejections of ambition, he was certainly an ambitious man. One who took considerable pride in the good name he had won through his deeds, and one who could be jealous of his perquisites when challenged.

Indeed, that very ambition is one of the great things about Washington. He was a man who, in Britain, would have been doomed to obscurity by his relatively low birth. At best he might have risen to a modest career in the military, and perhaps eventually earned a minor peerage. But certainly he would not have risen to be ranked among the wealthiest men in his nation, nor risen to a role not only on par with the Prime Minster’s but above it in every way. But in America, his talent for being in the right place, at the right time, with the right plan; his noble good looks and regal bearing; and his upright moral character and sheer persistence allowed him to climb steadily up the ranks of society.

And so this, above everything else, makes Washington worthy of our praise: that after he had risen to the top of the heap, after his enemies domestic and foreign had been vanquished, when he was not only handed the laurel of victory but offered the imperial scepter, then he demurred. He who could have been King chose instead to be President.

And with a firm understanding that everything he did would be immortalized, and that his slightest act might become precedent for the office he held, this very ambitious, talented, and passionate man became the very model of restraint. A man who had bent the efforts of long years to rising in wealth and status now became almost passive, in order to ensure that nothing extravagant or unnecessary would attach to the office he was establishing each day by his actions.

This is not to say that he did not act, he did, and with force, when he felt it necessary. But he realized just how fragile the new nation was, and how fragile its rule of law was. If its first President had been a bad President, all might have been lost. Just as Pompey and Cesear had turned the offices of consul, dictator, and imperator into the trappings of tyranny, Washington could easily have hijacked the Republic and made it his. Not only be the crude method of being declared King, but by subtler methods: undermining Congress through direct appeal, having political enemies quietly eliminated, running for re-election until dying in office.

Any of those methods might have strangled the United States before it grew strong enough to survive them. And Washington understood this deeply, and bent all his intellect and will to ensuring that it did not happen. And he crowned those efforts with his greatest act: voluntarily stepping down and choosing not to run for election, and then lawfully handing over the office to a man who had publicly vilified his policies and privately vilified him. And then he took up station quietly on his farm and refused, largely, to engage in political debate for the remaining years of his life.

George Washington did many great things for this nation, and made many wise pronouncements about matters foreign and domestic. He was a force for moderation between extremes and for patriotism before party loyalty. He would have despised any notion that a man’s political affiliation should be more important than his principles or character. He crafted a foreign policy that sought, and ensured peace for a critical few decades as the country grew. He, and his administration, built many institutions that endure to this day, and without which we cannot imagine the nation.

But none of those were his greatest gift to the United States. His greatest gift was the incredible restraint which enabled him to do much, but not too much. To make sure that the nation would be shaped in We the people’s image and not simply George Washington’s image. And for that, we owe him eternal gratitude.

With due humility, I will take issue with one wise counsel given by President Washington:

We ought not to look back, unless it is to derive useful lessons from past errors and for the purpose of profiting by dear bought experience.

I propose that there is another reason to look back, as good as these: to celebrate. Not to dwell in the past at the expense of the future, but to remember past victories as well as past defeats, and past wisdom as well as past error. In that spirit, let us remember our First President, who is truly worthy to be First in the Hearts of his Countrymen!

Happy Presidents Day Everyone!

As a bit of variety for our readers, I’ve decided to throw together a periodic humor piece inspired by Simon Travaglia BOFH. It’s not exactly an angry rant… but it is Friday (well, Saturday this time, but nobody really cares about those details if they know what’s good for them) — you deserve a few laughs. For those new to the HoS series, the first episode is here.

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It’s Saturday night and I’m in the lab. Javier and I are sitting at the lab table trying to figure out exactly how I’m supposed fulfill my part of the bargain with Jimmy the Janitor. Our preliminary recon only served to enhance the immensity of the problem — ever since a disgruntled grad student tried to shoot him about a decade ago, the Columbian Slave Driver’s door (I’ll call him the CSD for short) has been reinforced and alarmed. Even if Javier or I could pick the lock, we’d have a few minutes before campus police arrived and hauled us off to the county jail for the night. The only other door is into his lab, though it’s not alarmed, it’s hinged to make it impossible to enter from the lab unless we drill out the whole lock mechanism.

“This does not look good,” I complain.

“No kidding. There’s no way in the world to get inside that office without seriously damaging either the wall or windows,” notes Javier sadly.

“Yeah, and neither of us can dry wall for shit.” We found that out the hard way at Habitat for Humanity a few weeks back, which we both volunteered for quickly after finding the grad student association (GSA) was shouting drinks afterwards. “If only there was a way to distract him…”

“Well, he’s become a serious skirt chaser ever since his third wife left him.”

We both pause for a moment, and look at the portion of the wall on a direct line to Amy and Sasha’s office.

“I’m not talking to Sasha if I could possibly avoid it and Amy wouldn’t do it,” I protest.

“But she doesn’t have to know,” responds Javier with a sneaky gleam in his eye.

“What do you mean?”

“What if Amy and I go to the CSD’s office about 10 minutes before class to ask for help on an assignment and she has an ‘accident’ to attract his attention?”

I’m sure there’s no way in the world I could bring myself to do this to Amy myself — she’s just too unbearably cute to use as a pawn in my personal wars. But fortunately for me, Javier has fewer scruples than I (not to mention that he doesn’t have a soft spot for midwestern farmer’s daughter types like I do), and he’s willing to do the dirty work, so…

“Excellent. I’ll dash into his office while you and Amy keep him busy.”

Monday afternoon comes and phase one of the plan executes perfectly. Javier and the unwitting Amy head up to the CSD’s office while I wait around the corner, with my backpack full of “operational supplies.” Javier and Amy engage the CSD with some inane homework question, when Javier “accidentally” trips, spilling Amy, her books and all of Javier’s coffee all over the hallway floor. The CSD, not missing a chance to impress a lady, hops up from his desk to help the damsel in distress, while I sneak behind him into his office and dive under said desk.

The next 5 minutes are shear and utter hell as Javier fast-talks the CSD and I try desperately not to make a sound. Soon the door slams shut and I’m off to work. I pop a few ceiling tiles to find that the satellite feed runs right next door into the CSD’s lab. But before I follow the line, I feel obliged to strike some revenge for grad students everywhere.

Into the CSD’s top-left drawer, where he keeps his pens, go about a dozen prophylactics strategically placed to be visible from the other side of the desk. A swimsuit calendar goes up on the back side of the door and a few lad’s mags get placed on top of the stack of unread journal articles on the shelf by the window. I drop a few empty bottles of booze in the trash and open up his bottom right drawer to put in a half-empty bottle of booze only to find, well, a half-empty bottle of booze. I didn’t realize the CSD was actually boozing it on the sly, but in retrospect, I’m not sure that I’m surprised. Realizing that internet traffic logs could give my presence away, I do nothing to the CSD’s computer (which he carelessly forgot to log out of), except (a) leave a trojan which will start visiting http://www.dirtynunsinleatherhosery.com during all of his office hours for the next week before deleting itself, and (b) leave a nice (backdated) thank-you-for-donating letter from Manuel Marulanda Velez, the generalissimo of the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC). I’m sure supporting a known terrorist group will go over very well with the uni police when they show up after the CSD’s impending sexual harassment complaint. Perhaps he’ll even win an all-expenses paid vacation to Gitmo when the Feds find out (one can only hope).

A quick call to Jimmy to trigger a fire alarm has me escaping the CSD’s office via the CSD’s lab (after I use the rangefinder to figure out exactly where the satellite feed drops through to second floor). I run back to my lab and check the blueprints on my way out and I notice that the feed drops to an instructional lab on first floor, where Jimmy and I could easily use a masonry drill to run a line to the basement. Excellent. I finally wander outside and catch up with Javier and instruct him to use his newly found tactical tripping skills to ensure that the department’s own Man-Hating Dyke is the first person to make her way up to the CSD’s office after we’re let back inside.

Javier doesn’t even ask any questions as we walk back into the building and the stream of profanities soon heard from the direction of the CSD’s office make me grin. It appears that Operation FARC You has been a success…

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