Pretty great article on Auden
Evil is unspectacular and always human,
And shares our bed and eats at our own table.
Confounding the calumniators and apostates
Evil is unspectacular and always human,
I never had an interest in being a mayor ’cause that’s a real job. You have to produce.
Before we make the leap to say the equations of quantum theory tell us the world is inescapably crazy and bizarre...
I got my hair cut today. My wife takes the family to a place in Chinatown, where cuts are cheap and white guys not seen much. They generally put up with me, however...since I don't speak Chinese, some of my personality defects remain concealed when I'm there.
From the trusty arm of Roger Angell (link via Yglesias).
Asked by Cutler whether he considers “a prolonged period of creating the sensation of drowning”—waterboarding—to be torture, Cheney’s response comes fast and certain:
I don’t. Tell me what terrorist attacks that you would have let go forward because you didn’t want to be a mean and nasty fellow. Are you gonna trade the lives of a number of people because you want to preserve your, your honor, or are you going to do your job, do what’s required first and foremost, your responsibility to safeguard the United States of America and the lives of its citizens. Now given a choice between doing what we did or backing off and saying, “We know you know their next attack against the United States but we’re not gonna force you to tell us what is is because it might create a bad image for us.” That’s not a close call for me.Quite apart from the large factual questions blithely begged, there is a kind of stark amoral grandeur to this answer that takes one’s breath away. Just as he was likely the most important and influential American official in making the decision to withhold the protection of the Geneva Conventions from detainees, Cheney was likely the most important and influential American when it came to imposing an official government policy of torture. It is quite clear he simply cannot, or will not, acknowledge that such a policy raises any serious moral or legal questions at all. Those who do acknowledge such questions, he appears to believe, are poseurs, acting out some highfalutin and affected pretense based on—there is a barely suppressed sneer here—“preserving your honor.” What does he think of those—and their number includes the current attorney general of the United States and the president himself—who believe and have declared publicly that waterboarding is torture and thus plainly illegal? For Cheney the question is not only “not a close call.” It is not even a question.
For Partensky, the take-away message is clear: if you see someone who needs medical assistance, don't call 911, because the police might come and beat you up. Instead, help that person get to the hospital in a taxi.
...in Puerto Rico.
Apropos of nothing, I used to have this Hungarian thesis advisor with a limp. One day, he did a lecture on the 1956 uprising.— Jeb Lund (@Mobute) February 15, 2014
This military history dude in class—basically a gamer, picture it—interrupts and starts offering advice on how he'd defeat the Red Army.— Jeb Lund (@Mobute) February 15, 2014
The thesis advisor lets him go on and on, dilating endlessly on how he'd roll some military history 20-sided die to defeat the Soviets.— Jeb Lund (@Mobute) February 15, 2014
Finally, the Hungarian prof lets out an, "Ahhhh." Just this kind of back-throat sighing, as if he's been expecting this disappointment.— Jeb Lund (@Mobute) February 15, 2014
"At the time," he says, "we found that Molotov cocktails dropped on the tanks from the second story would burn the people in them alive."— Jeb Lund (@Mobute) February 15, 2014
Military history wonk shut the fuck up for the rest of the semester.— Jeb Lund (@Mobute) February 15, 2014
Those of us who knew about him always guessed that the Hungarian prof's limp came from being shot by the Red Army. He never said.— Jeb Lund (@Mobute) February 15, 2014
As waters reached the Eton weights room, Cameron sprang into action..
Sinkholes are common in the area, but this one was unique, Dettman said.
When you’re in a world where 40 money managers make as much as 300,000 high school teachers, it’s just silly to imagine that there will be any sense, on either side, of equal dignity in work.
Four Taiwanese tourists on their way to an aurora borealis viewing lodge were rescued by troopers Friday after their car got stuck on a remote mining road...[on] the way to pick the women up, troopers ran into a wanted man and arrested him...
Source: New York Times
[F]or the Republican establishment, it may come down to this: Only a Bush can beat a Clinton.
I come to bury Peyton, not to praise him. Peter King said on Charlie Rose yesterday that he was glad to have a five year grace period before a player was eligible for induction. Gives space, and time to reflect, he noted. After all, he said, look at Kurt Warner. We might have rashly inducted him into the Hall of Fame! Now cooler heads can prevail and we can focus on a couple bad years with the Giants, and not the fact that he was one of the greatest playoff and Super Bowl quarterbacks in NFL history. That's what perspective gets you.
(At the end of an unusually football-focused TMQ)
‘Get cracking, you oafish rake!’ shrieked Vidal with a cackle of glee and inserted two large amyl nitrate ampules, one in each of my nostrils, and then popped them in double quick order. Simultaneous to this, Miss Kim pressed with great vigor the two ice cubes against my pulsating member, and the diabolic Rivers injected a heady potion of amphetamine laced with Spanish Fly into my templer vein.
Revealed: Racy 'Catwoman' lover of Nazi shame Tory MP was on the committee that cleared him over his French stag-do lies... as video emerges of his friends chanting 'Hitler'
This whole elaborate spectacle is just a massive way to distract attention from Benghazi.— Matt Yglesias (@mattyglesias) February 3, 2014