Piracy, like most disasters, is much more interesting when it happens to someone else. While schadenfreude here at 12 Angry Men is usually limited to individuals, seeing it on an international level (where the U.S. is -not- on the receiving end) makes for plenty of nice copy.

Piracy in the modern age has yet to really conquer the image of 17-19th century pirates that dominates the American mind. Modern headlines colored by movie images and Internet memes make for interesting juxtapositions, such as the pirate vs. ninja showdowns whenever Japanese ships are taken for ransom.

However, lately two instances of the theme have so many juicy bits to them that they might finally wrench the image of a pirate into the modern consciousness. But a good deal of modern silliness comes along for the ride.

The first one is a fairly straightforward ship, but the cargo’s final destination was in doubt: Ukranian ship (MV Faina) carrying 33 T-72 Soviet-era tanks to Kenya (on behalf of raiders in the Sundan). Kenya denies that they were for the Sudan, but tanks keep appearing in the Sudan, and they didn’t arrive overland to the land-locked south Sudan…

That ship is surrounded by warships, and pirates are still asking for $20m ransom.

The second one sounds like something from an action movie. The Iran Deyant (also spelled Iran Deyanat is owned by the Iranian government. It left China in late July and was bound for Germany through the Suez Canal to deliver 43 tons of iron ore and ‘industrial products’. On August 21st Somali pirates decided that this was a ship they wanted to take and hold for ransom. Bad for them, interesting for everyone else.

The cargo was an enormous amount of -something-, but it’s not clear that it was iron ore. The reports are spotty and changing, ranging from “gritty oily sand” to “crude oil” to “minerals”. The pirates who opened the cargo developed severe skin burns and hair loss in the following days, a la Raiders of the Lost Ark.

Ironically, the latest conspiracy theory surrounding the Iran Deyant comes closer to that movie than I thought possible.

The symptoms experienced by the pirates seem consistent with massive radiation exposure. A ship full of radioactive sand would make a huge mess if it were to spill. Or if it were to detonate…

An Iranian ship, a floating dirty-bomb full of Chinese radioactive waste, wouldn’t really be of much use in Germany, but delivery to Germany makes a good excuse to float it through the Suez Canal, and next to Tel-Aviv in Israel. Depending on its travel schedule, it would have hit right about October 9th… Happy Yom Kippur.

Iran was hoping not to be captured, and even happy to pay the ransom on this ship straight away before anyone looked at it too closely. But now things seem to be bogging down as the U.S. and others are taking a real interest in what the cargo here actually is. If Somali pirates have actually managed to block Iran’s long-talked about attack on Israel, that would certainly establish modern piracy as a force for change in world events.

And a worth a dang good laugh at Iran for not managing to bribe their way through Somalia properly…

So while we wait to hear what the facts actually are about the Iran Deyant, it’s certainly fun to watch the theories abound. This year might be the tipping point for Somali piracy where the big players suddenly don’t tolerate them anymore and just sink every ship on the Somali coast out of spite.

But until then, we will still get lovely implied headlines out of it:

Japan Executes Surprise Raid Against Pirates
Russia/US Form Joint Piracy Squad
Somali Pirates Save Israel and Prevent World War IV

Yay for the Somalis. They put the “piracy” back into conspiracy!

On a personal note, this will officially become my favorite conspiracy theory once someone completes the circle and finds a way to blame Bush, Bin Laden, and/or Palin for it.

The National Review Online also reported this (and also linked the US presidential campaign into its post, kudos), and now has sources saying most of this is bogus (no surprise here), but I’m still munching popcorn and waiting to see how Iran maneuvers through its explanation of this…

This comes as a follow up to my last article where I introduced our readers to the absolute insanity that is The Confluence, a blog run by a minuscule pro-Hillary political group that has now decided the deep end wasn’t crazy enough and has dived full force off the ocean shelf into bizarre conspiracy theories.

Last week they ran an article on how the Democratic Primary was rigged for Obama, and in fact had been rigged years ago, in their own words:

The nomination was rigged, long ago. The people responsible for ignoring the will of the voters and selecting Barack Obama as the nominee have been plotting and planning for years. This was no accident. The full scope of what happened may never be known, but in hindsight some of it is obvious.

I’m a bit confused as to how they can even make such a leap… the other posts on the blog are insane, true, but this one steps into grounds of convoluted illogical assumptions that are so deep they stagger me. Have they forgotten that it was Hilary Clinton that led the charge to have the delegates unseated? Do they realize what they are suggesting? Their claim that the election was rigged via the treatment of Michigan and Florida is a claim that Hillary rigged the election for Obama

WHAT!?!?

They actually believe that Hillary Clinton, in their mind the rightful presidential nominee for the Democratic party, rigged the Democratic Primary so that her opponent, Barack Obama, would win. In what sort of universe does a conspiracy theory like this even make sense!?! It’s like claiming that Kennedy hired his own assassin! This sort of stuff reaches so far down the well of crazy that I am really excited to see what they come up with next. It’s like watching a car wreck, I can’t stop reading their blog. It’s a whole new level of insanity, and while it creeps me out, like the patron of a good horror movie I keep coming back for more.

If the crazy half-baked conspiracy theory wasn’t enough, the author has the absolute audacity to suggest that Hillary’s campaign is akin to the Civil Rights Movement. I’m sorry, but at that point the dose of crazy goes from funny to pathetic. If you really think you can compare a race’s struggle to not only have the right to vote, but the right to attend the same schools, live and work where they want, and not have to live in constant fear for their lives, you are just pathetically misinformed.

Edit:They’re even running an article today about how Obama was “supposed to pay” for Hillary’s debt. Um, when was this decided? I know Hillary asked him to, but why should he? She didn’t have the decency to bow out when it was clear to everyone else she had lost. She needs to pay her own damn bills. Obama is not liable for her irresponsibly continued campaign.

-Angry Midwesterner


First, review this fine cautionary tale available here, courtesy of the ACLU:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RNJl9EEcsoE

Now, I am no great fan of the ACLU, but credit where credit is due, this piece sums up the dangers of all those clever national IDs, government administered programs, linked databases, and GPS-enabled devices nicely. In fact, just two short years later, much of what is portrayed already exists:

  • businesses use caller-ID to recognize phones and link to customer information
  • even if the government didn’t give it out, businesses would certainly use a national ID number as a key—just as they use the SSN currently
  • your home address, birthday, name, etc. are all already keyed to the current equivalent of a national ID—your SSN
  • where you work is almost certainly on file—didn’t they ask the last time you applied for credit or a loan?
  • cell phones with GPS currently do broadcast your location to services that request that information—unless you configure them not to
  • businesses already assign delivery areas or prices by risk of the neighborhood—as those living near shady areas know—and as crime stats become more instantly available, this can only increase
  • as businesses partner to offer shared customer incentives, exchanging information about recent purchases and coupon offers is becoming commonplace
  • certainly whether your cards are maxed out is easy—a quick query to each card could do that

And some things, which have not yet come to pass (as it were) are terrifyingly likely:

  • currently legislation protects your health care information, but either government-run healthcare or single-payer schemes would require releasing it to the government at the least
  • legislation to allow the government to regulate food and lifestyle choices for health is already proposed—once the government’s actually paying for health-care, what will happen
  • currently the health-care industry and insurance industry would love to be notified about people’s purchases and force them to sign waivers—unlike them, government can actually enforce such desires
  • in our climate of constant fear of terror attacks, does opening travel itineraries to public scrutiny seem farfetched?

Horrifyingly, the only thing which seemed utterly ridiculous was libraries ever voluntarily making your reading choices public. But amazon.com on the other hand…

Clearly some of what is portrayed is fine, even useful, but some is frighteningly Orwellian.

So where should the line be drawn? Where does the scenario presented cross the line from convenience to surveillance? As technology advances it seems increasingly impossible to effectively compartmentalize information, so should we assume that whatever the government knows about us will find its way into private hands? And just how much should the government know about us, anyway?

Discuss amongst yourselves!

On top of the wonders of the 12 Angry Men Blog, we have our own special internal mailing list that occasionally produces amusing gems. Every so often, you know, when the stars are right (Cthulu ftahgn!), we choose to share these dialogues with you, our loyal readers.

Angry Overeducated Catholic
What I always wonder about is why these secret cabals have such bizarre goals. Exterminate 99% of humanity in a nuclear holocaust. Brutally enslave 99% of the world. Ruthlessly (but secretly) hold power in all nations of the world through shadowy college fraternities.

I mean, in every case either just plain crazy (nuclear war) or, really, far too much work for any sane person to want to do (everything else).

I too believe there are international conspiracies of bankers, financiers, secret society members, etc. I am confident that groups like the Trilateral Commission, the Rothchilds, the Bilderberg Group, and the Skull and Bones all exist, all have actual members and actual meetings, and have an actual agenda. And here is their deep, dark, secret, terrible agenda: ensure we all get/stay rich, keep meeting in awesome exclusive locations, and keep up a steady supply of good booze, good food, and pretty girls.

Now that’s an agenda I can see a rich, powerful, sneaky bastard actually embracing as worthwhile…

After all, everyone conspires, and for pretty much the same things. Rich people just do it more effectively…

Angry Immigrant
So how about groups that avoid that agenda by their very charter — like Opus Dei? They’ve got to be all about the aliens and total world dominance…

Angry Midwesterner
Well according to a South Park episode I saw, I’d imagine they are after good booze, good food, and pretty boys…

Oops, sorry, I mixed them up with the Republicans…

Angry Overeducated Catholic
…though really this only applies to the Closet Gay wing of the Party, please. There’s also the large “Openly Interested in Pretty Girls” wing, but we try to keep things quiet because the CG wing really hates to be reminded about how much fun we’re having. Also, we don’t want them to know about our stash of good drugs and booze because then we’d have to share. Also, we don’t like to mingle with them because, well, they’re just really creepy, you know. (I mean, geesh, just look at Craig for crying-out-loud)!

Anyway, gotta go, need to arrange the strippers for the bash at Cheneys…

Angry Midwesterner
I’d think a stripper bash would kill Cheney. Besides, isn’t he more interested in watching people kill puppies?

Mildly Piqued Academician
Dude that’s why you take nitro pills. Bringing some candid shots of Larry Craig might work as well.

What happens in a secure undisclosed location STAYS in a secure undisclosed location.

Angry Overeducated Catholic
(Re: Dick Cheney watching people kill puppies)
No, that’s a vicious slander by his enemies. Cheney has no interest in watching people kill anything. He’s a player not a spectator…

And when he gets the urge, it’s not animals he sets his sights on…

Angry Midwesterner
What now you’re going to claim lawyers are humans?

Angry Overeducated Catholic
No, but bloodsucking monsters aren’t animals, the last time I checked…

Angry Virginian
And if bloodsucking monsters don’t even qualify as animals, then lawyers definitely don’t.

Mildly Piqued Academician
LINK: Che-ney t-shirts

Angry Overeducated Catholic
Heh, heh, heh…

If I were Cheney I’d totally buy one of these shirts to wear around the house…

Mildly Piqued Academician
You could look snazzy doing a “Cheney speedball”: Alternating between strippers and pictures of Larry Craig and Barney Frank, the first as a substitute for uppers and the second as a stunningly good substitute for downers. 🙂

The Che-ney thong is pretty good. I was disappointed that my homie Radical Jack didn’t have a Che thong, but I’m sure that if I looked hard enough, one could be found.

Angry Overeducated Catholic
Heh. With a Che thong you could express your trendy leftist contempt for capitalism, your trendy conformity to fashion trends, and your trendy objectification of women—at the same time! A bargain for you!

Mildly Piqued Academician
*Three* birds with one stone!

If that’s not worthy of a “Mao More Than Ever” slogan, I don’t know what is! Time to make a revolutionary poster!

The taste of succulent albacore with a hint of wasabi and soy sauce… Eel perfectly laid out over rice… A tasty roll of crab, expertly wrapped in fresh seaweed. For many, sushi is a tasty way to break free from the tyranny of bland, generic American cuisine. But wait just a minute Ms. Sashimi! Before you have another bite, realize this: When you dine on sushi, you dine with the Reverend Moon!

That’s right, that tasty bit of fish puts you in league with the Unification Church, and it’s leader the enigmatic Rev. Sun Myung Moon. But what do you mean, Angry New Mexican? I don’t believe in mass weddings, the insufficiency of Christ’s sacrifice courtesy of John the Baptist’s failings or a literal kingdom of God on earth. I mean, I don’t even read the Washington Times, a redoubt of the Moonies since its founding. How can I possibly be in league with the Moonies?

My dear sushi-eating readers, you are in league with Rev. Moon, and I’m about to explain why. To start off with, none of this is “new.” The Chicago Tribune and the East Bay Express pointed this out several years ago. But time and time again, I’ve found the American people woefully unaware of their role in the New World Order [Moonie Edition]. You see, Rev. Moon’s route to your California roll was revealed to the world in 1980 with his speech the Way of Tuna. In it Rev. Moon outlines his plan to build the Kingdom of Heaven on earth starting first with the oceans, hence the Way of Tuna. The means is simple — build a Korean chaebol, of the likes of Samsung or Hyundai (whose yes-men seem to alternate control of South Korea’s government), but build this chaebol in fish. The building of ships, fishing and distribution network in the US and Korea will all exist in one big happy (Moonie) family, under the guise True World Foods.

Rev. Moon started assembling his empire in the late 70’s, buying key companies and slowly taking over the town of Gloucester, MA. The Moonie fisherman have since also moved into Bayou La Batre, AL and Kodiak, AK. Gloucester does much of the processing and their 22 distribution centers are located in places like Elizabeth, NJ and Elk Grove Village, IL. According to The Trib, TWF brings in $250 million dollars a year in revenues. While not a monopoly, TWF does have a substantial market share, and taking direction from Rev. Moon, has played a key role in the sushi explosion in the US in the last 30 years. On the TWF site, I found a choice quote, I felt our readers would enjoy:

“What we believe makes True World Foods LLC unique in the marketplace is our corporate culture. Its underlying principles are that we look to live our lives for the sake of others, believe in the philosophy of oneness and instill the idea of teamwork to all our employees.”

Oneness indeed… how wonderfully Moonie. So before you have that next yummy California roll, just remember: The Reverend Moon thanks you for your investment.

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Aside: You may notice the “Hates America” tag. I have decided, following the Mildly Piqued Academician (in homage to Angry Midwesterner), to tag all my rants with “Hates America” from here on out. I give it a fig leaf of justification by noting that readers of the Washington Times are part of the Grand Neoconservative Conspiracy (TM), and therefore must hate America.

If you read Slashdot frequently, you’ll find that in the midst of the Windows bashing and Me > You flame fests, the name of Ron Paul is often mentioned in hushed tones as the Republican Libertarian messiah who will rescue Amerika America from The Great Satan (aka George W. Bush). From reading the comments of the barely literate masses, you’d think that Ron Paul inspires more interest than Natalie Portman, naked and petrified. His die-had partisans wet themselves off the fact that he raised $4 million off the internet. Combining that with the $4 million he raised in “meatspace,” that puts him on par with Joe Biden, and behind Chris Dodd and Bill Richardson in the fund raising race. Real impressive, Ron… you’re running neck-a-neck with three candidates who combine for less than 10% of likely primary voters. I’m impressed… NOT!

If I may for a moment piggy-back on the elitist sentiments often displayed by my colleagues, the “masses,” much like Mr. Paul’s partisans, who are rumored to groan “Brains!” during campaign rallies, are dead wrong. Ron Paul, though he has some attractive viewpoints, like being against the war in Iraq (though this is because he’s a rank isolationist, excuse me, noninterventionist) and pro-life (because even children in the womb have a right to property), Ron Paul firmly falls in to the ranks of the bat-shit insane. For those who’ve drunk the libertarian Kool-Aid, I’d like to convict Mr. Paul, not on so-called libertarian positions as espoused by the crazies, but on his own words and positions. “Real Libertarians” might not believe X, Y or Z, but Mr. Paul does, and a just condemnation will be his.

The Environment
Libertarianism, as a philosophy stands behind the oppression of the weak by the strong in the name of private property. The classic libertarian position on the environment falls along the lines — “It’s my f#@*ing property and I’ll do with it as I please.” Mr. Paul states his opposition to any sort of environmental protection law such as when he proposed a bill to repeal the clean water act. But Mr. Paul, unlike many of his libertarian counterparts, has left the pre-Sumerian age, and realized that what I do with my property can cause environmental harm to someone else’s. Thus, Mr. Paul, inherently distrustful of the evils of Big Government[TM] proposes his solution, which I quote: “If your property is being damaged, you have every right to sue the polluter.” That’s right, the answer to evil Big Government[TM] environmental law is lawyers, lots and lots of lawyers. Forget our elected representatives in Congress, the correct people to decide on the cost of the damage you cause to me by your polluting ways are the unelected judges in the judiciary. Mr. Paul’s stinging critiques of the UN and NAFTA for being “unelected” start to ring hollow. Imagine the look in the eyes of John Edwards’ trial lawyer buddies should this bit of Ron Paul insanity to come to pass — they’ll be seeing big, big, big bucks from all the litigation. Forget an honest day’s work, in Mr. Paul’s America, being an ambulance-chasing lawyer is the way to make it big… and you can help the environment too.

The Gold Standard
Mr. Paul’s long-standing dislike of the federal reserve is well noted in his diatribe on the gold standard. Mr. Paul rants about the evils of so-called “fiat currency” and sees the only solution in the gold standard. Unfortunately for Mr. Paul, all of his fancy education has left him educated stupid on the issue. There are two fundamental problems with Mr. Paul’s logic: a fundamental misunderstanding of currency exchange and a fundamental misunderstanding of the value of gold.

First, we must understand that money is subject to the same laws of economics as anything else, from soup to nuts. This means that if more people want to sell dollars than want to buy dollars, the price of dollars go down. This is why the current account balance is one of the two major contributors to the underlying value of a currency. The United States has a large negative current account balance, aka we import much more than we export. The importers want to sell dollars, to buy the local currencies where they produce goods, while exporters want to buy dollars and get rid of the local currencies where they sell goods. Since there’s more importing and exporting, more people want to sell dollars than buy them. This means that the price of the US dollar decreases. This problem is (in the long term) self-correcting (imports cost more and exports cost less) but that doesn’t mean a negative current-account balance won’t wreck havoc in the short term.

The second major contributor to the underlying value of a currency is the money supply. The more money there is, the less it’s worth in a certain sense. This “cheapening” of money can be crudely approximated using the inflation rate (more sophisticated measures, like M1 are available, but for our purposes today, inflation suffices). If the money supply is being printed to the point of worthlessness (like Robert Mugabe‘s Zimbabwe), inflation number should be high. In the US inflation numbers are low (and have been in the 1-5% range since the early 1980’s). This means that the money supply, about the Fed’s control of which Mr. Paul complains constantly, isn’t the cause of the weakness of the US Dollar. The cause is the current account balance, which the Fed has no control over.

Second, Mr. Paul’s understanding of gold is fundamentally flawed. Unlike wheat (which is edible), gold has almost no inherent value to a human person. Barring a few uses in high-end electronics, gold is exclusively used in jewelry. Translation: We don’t really need gold, we want it because it is pretty. It has a high value because the demand for pretty exceeds the supply of it. If I could perform alchemy and turn lead into gold, gold would be worthless. This means that the big difference between gold and a “fiat currency” like the dollar is in supply. Neither has any (meaningful) intrinsic value. The scarier problem with gold is who control’s the supply. Unlike the Fed, which is part of the US gov’t, the supply of gold is controlled by mining companies, like Anglo-American, historically the gold arm of the DeBeers cartel. In Mr. Paul’s opinion, allowing a foreign cartel to control America’s money supply is the superior choice for America. This seems to clash mightily with Mr. Paul’s isolationist non-interventionist tendencies. But Mr. Paul doesn’t need to double-think this one, because he hasn’t bothered to think things through in the first place. History is pretty damning. If you look at the 1850’s the gold rush in America (which then had a gold/silver standard) caused a 30% increase in wholesale prices in five years. A switch to a strict gold standard in the “Crime of 1873” lead to a depression so great its like would not be seen again until 1932. But Mr. Paul’s short-sighted version of history neglects both of these calamities.

Conclusions
I could go on and on about Mr. Paul being a few cards short of 52, if you catch my drift, but these sites have done the job pretty well. My favorite gems from Mr. Paul’s legislative record include trying to ban flag burning (what a libertarian proposal!) and abolishing basically every form of federal tax (which would allow us to pay for our military, how exactly?). All told, Mr. Paul is the latest example of the sorry mental state of America’s Libertarian movement. It’s a shame they have to take civil liberties down with them.

Today the Angry Men made a tragic discovery. Apparently, according to the infallible Intarweb, we rate only a modest “High School” reading level overall. Sad, really, since we pride ourselves on being educated beyond all need or reason. (Or perhaps that’s just some of us projecting onto the others. Well, and by some, I mean me…)

However, it did get us to thinking: What, in its infinite wisdom, would this Dark Oracle powered by the unholy forces of Redmond think of various sites around the all-knowing Blogosphere. So, we gave it a try—plugging everything into http://www.criticsrant.com/bb/reading_level.aspx and viola, the results were, ah, somewhat surprising.

Let’s start with the mainstream of American political thought:

But you know, this thing is really focused on Blogs, so maybe it’s just that these staid, stodgy, government sites and wishy-washy party sites aren’t an ideal test. Let’s try some honest-to-goodness blogs. Hmm, let me pick out an excellent example of clear reasoning from each political side:

Uh huh.

Well, maybe they’re just outliers. Let’s take three sites so extreme, so bizarre, so brain damaged that they just have to show their true colors:

Uh oh! Well, surely that was just bad luck. Let’s try two more crazy sites, one from either side of the political spectrum:

Yipes! This is really troubling.

Okay, now for the acid test, let’s use one of the most hillarious but least readable sites on the whole Intraweb:

  • TimeCube!!! [http://www.timecube.com]: High School (!?! – apparently it’s only at the college level that you get educated stupid!)

So, now in fear and trembling we wonder whether the whole world has turned upside down.

Fear not, noble reader, and take heart. All is not wrong with the world, for at least two sites on the Great Web of Life return the right results:

  • /. rates a High School level, which is being generous, but…
  • Chick Publications rates the Elementary result it so richly deserves…

Left as an exercise for the reader: find even more amusing examples and post in the Comments section.

(And, as always, Discuss amongst yourselves.)

The greatest ideological struggle in the post-communist era is, so the media tells us, the struggle against radical Islam. Unfortunately, the media oracle feeds us conflicting messages on what the real issue is and how it can be solved. Like any issue that involves political zombies, America has two irreconcilable visions of the problem, and two radically different solutions. But, as is true with many issues in American politics: both sides are wrong. This is part one of a two-part series dealing with the problems Americans have with understanding and responding to radical Islam.

Let us begin with the right, which frankly speaking, isn’t. From the view of extreme partisans on the right, the problem is Islam itself. The Islamaniacs , and all those who follow the False Prophet, follow a fundamentally violent religion. From this perspective, Islam is locked in an eternal jihad against the heathen world, and it is a conflict that can only be continued by force of arms: Non-Muslims must either recite the shahadah or perish: There is no room for the separation of Mosque and State in Islam. Supporters of this view of Islam feel that the solution to the conflict is to take up arms to oppose the jihad. Though most won’t say it, there are always the more candid (and extreme) voices that feel that Islam must be destroyed. Supporters of this position point to the (admittedly) violent rise of Islam in the 7th and 8th century and content that the us-versus-them mindset of the early days of Islam translate perfectly into the 21st century.

In a refreshing (albeit disturbing) alternative to the zombification of politics, fellows from the “Atheist by Faith Alone” camp of lunatic leftists (like the recent douchebag-cum-author Christopher Hitchens) agree with this view. But this odd confluence of fundamentalist Christians and irrational atheists is united in something else: being flat out wrong.

For starters, Islam is not the only religion to have a troubling relationship with the state. Christianity, for instance has had problems in all its major branches (see late medieval Western Europe for Catholicism, the late Byzantine Orthodoxy or later writings of Luther that smack of complete Caesero-Papism). Second, the violence in Arabia was par for the course at the time and that Islamic nations were significantly less violent than some of their pagan contemporaries (the Golden Horde comes to mind). Third, radical Islam is a product of the modern era: beginning in the late 19th century with Jamal al-Din al-Afghani as a response to the British occupation. Until that point, the Islamic world (at least in its Turkoman/Islamic flavor) wallowed in the peaceful, slothful decadence it had descended into since the Battle of Lepanto. Fourth, barring isolated separatist insurgencies (which are not, in general religiously motivated), Muslims in Southeast Asia, the major nexus of Islam outside of the Middle East have lived quite peacefully for a long time.

A detailed look at history and a smattering of common sense (often lacking in the American right) tell a clear story: this view of Islam is wrong, and the conclusion that it must be destroyed by force cannot be supported from that evidence. If only the other side offered a better view. As we’ll see in the next issue, things aren’t any better on the left.

Ladies and Gentlemen, it is time once again to put on our tinfoil hats. If you don’t already have one, you’re in luck! For just $12.95 you can own a professionally designed and constructed tinfoil hat! For those looking to protect themselves from the orbital mind control lasers on the cheap, the manufacturers have provided us with simple and easy instructions for homemade versions. Just make sure you do it right because this time, it is serious!

Before I get into the Conspiracy Theory of the Moment ™, let me take a moment to say that I am a huge fan of money. No not in the traditional sense of “I wish I had more of it”, but in the sense that I appreciate currency for its beauty. As my fellow Angry Men can attest to, I use two dollar bills, dollar coins, and fifty cent coins with reckless abandon. I see them as being a beautiful part of our country’s heritage and as masterful works of art which should be appreciated and used for their intended purposes. Naturally I was excited to find out that the dollar coin would be getting a face lift along with a special series honoring the Presidents of our glorious Union.

I was dismayed, however, to find that there was something very sinister about the new dollar coins, a purposeful omission which suggests a dark and shady conspiracy the likes of which the world has never known. I submit the following images, from the US Mint’s website, for your inspection.

If you look closely you will notice that the word “Liberty” does not appear anywhere on the coin in question. While many have complained about the placement of the mottos “E Pluribus Unum” and “In God We Trust” on the edge of the new dollar coin, far more shocking and alarming is the absence of the word “Liberty”. Every coin prior to the new one dollar coin has borne the word “Liberty”, and rightfully so—the ideal of Liberty is at the core of the American belief system and is the foundation upon which the documents which define our country are built.

Now the US Treasury claims that “Liberty” should be self evident, given the presence of the Statue of Liberty, but Lady Liberty has graced our coinage before and always with the word “Liberty”. Take for example, the platinum proof coins issued by the US Mint since 1997. All bear the face of Liberty, and the word “Liberty” as well.

In the case of these platinum coins, we even see the Statue of Liberty, portrayed much as it is on the current dollar coins, unmistakeable, yet still the designers and politicians responsible for the coin understood the necessity of placing the word “Liberty” on the coin.

If this isn’t enough evidence, note the silver and gold proof coins, both minted by the US government since 1986, and both containing images of Lady Liberty and the word “Liberty”. Obviously previous generations of politicians disagreed with the current crop who decided to wipe “Liberty” off the face of our dollar coins. They understood that as one of the founding principles of our system of government, Liberty could not be emphasized enough.

Now others may decline to see the obvious sinister undertones of a Congress which suspends our rights in the name of supposed safety, and violates the Constitution in the name of security, ignoring the wise words of founding father Ben Franklin who once said “Those who would give up Essential Liberty to purchase a little Temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety.” They might even claim that this was obviously just a design choice, and not one which threatens the very foundation of our political system. But given that they have now removed “Liberty” from its deserved prominent place on our coinage, I myself am going to invest in a tinfoil hat; besides, I think I look good in tin!

 

-Angry Midwesterner

Angry Midwesterner

Throughout the history of this blog, I’ve tried to defend the Bush Administration where I thought they were under unfair attack. I’ve even made light of the righteous purity and increidble heroism of the Democrats. Now, I feel only the deepest shame and guilt. I have been so wrong.

Recently, while trying to gather information for an upcoming rant, I came across a website purporting to give “the real truth” behind what happened on 9-11. Expecting the standard rehash of stupid conspiracy theories, I was utterly unprepared for what I found. Absolute, incontrovertible proof that Karl Rove is personally responsible for every evil act committed by Americans. Yes, personally responsible. For. Every. Single. One.

It’s incredible, I know, but it’s true. The website is long gone, of course. The rumor is that Karl Rove personally execute the webmaster in a special ceremony for the Skull and Bones central committee. In a past life I would have laughed at that, but now I know it’s all too likely. Fortunately, I had cached the pages and will now, at great personal risk, reprint the key images below, so that you can know the truth that I know: Karl Rove is not merely one evil Republican among many, but the singular source of American evil in this age—and every age.

Karl Rove present as Indians are given smallpox-laden blankets.
Bad, Rove, bad!!!

Karl Rove present at “negotiations” with Indians, in which they gave away their land to white invaders.
Oh, Rove, no!!!

Karl Rove present at the assassination of Abraham Lincoln, the one true Republican and secular messiah of Illinois.
Damn it, Rove, he’s a Republican!

Karl Rove watches as Jack Ruby eliminates Osward.
Rove, stop, just stop!

Karl Rove advises Reagan on how to survive the Iran-Contra crisis.Whew, this one isn’t too bad…

Karl Rove, Sen. Kerry and Sen. Harkin pledge their support to Nicaraguan dictator Manuel Ortega. (Rove played both sides in the Iran-Contra deal to ensure maximum casualties on all sides.)
Oh, no, Rove, not the Commies!

Karl Rove and American Ambassador Glaspie urge Saddam Hussein to invade Kuwait.
Saddam was right, you did trick him!  Darn you Rove!!!

And, by far, the worst:

Karl Rove meets with Osama bin Ladin to coordinate the 9-11 attacks.
What, no!  Not with Osama.  That’s it, Rove, we’re done!!!

As you can clearly see, Karl Rove is hardly the mild mannered family man he claims to be. He isn’t even the evil Republican mastermind of spin and rigging elections the Democrats claim him to be. No, he’s the unique human manifestation of American evil, who lives in every age to bring misery and suffering to the world, American Style!

And I, Angry Overeducated Catholic can no longer take it. I can’t be party to this hideous evil. So I now pledge my faith to the stawalt defenders of truth, justice, and the American Way—the Democrats. Because protected by their clever masquerade of pork-barrel politics and foreign policy which assumes our enemies are sweetness and light, they are gathering forces to oppose the true evil of our times: Karl Rove.