A federal appeals court has slammed the reliability of U.S. government intelligence documents, saying just because officials keep repeating their assertions does not make them true.Aside from the delightfully childish, literary sack tap that the U.S. Court of Appeals in Washington administered, this just further shows how self negating the Bush administration's policies on terrorism and the law are. Not only does the condition of Guantanamo and the methods and tactics with which we treat detainees deplorable, not only are there probably dozens upon dozens of innocent men being held/tortured without repercussions, not only is it a blight on the United States and a red letter of shame pinned on us by the rest of the world, not only does it attempt to gut and circumvent basic freedoms and laws this country was founded on, but this shit doesn't even work. It just makes it harder to prosecute actual terrorists for actual crimes. It fails on a counter-terrorism level and a judicial level: the worst of both worlds. Such is the state of our policy.
A three-judge panel from the U.S. Court of Appeals in Washington likened the Bush administration's case to a line in an 1876 nonsense poem by Lewis Carroll: "I have said it thrice: What I tell you three times is true."
Monday, June 30, 2008
U.S. Advised Iraqi Ministry on Oil Deals
A group of American advisers led by a small State Department team played an integral part in drawing up contracts between the Iraqi government and five major Western oil companies to develop some of the largest fields in Iraq, American officials say.
The disclosure, coming on the eve of the contracts’ announcement, is the first confirmation of direct involvement by the Bush administration in deals to open Iraq’s oil to commercial development and is likely to stoke criticism.
....In their role as advisers to the Iraqi Oil Ministry, American government lawyers and private-sector consultants provided template contracts and detailed suggestions on drafting the contracts, advisers and a senior State Department official said.
Exxon Mobil, Shell, BP, Total and Chevron.
Profiteering as policy. Dictatorship to colonialism. Be proud.
Have you wondered just how much longer the Middle East and oil companies could bend you over a barrel, banging away at your tender nether regions in a gruff and unkind manner? Shouldn't they be getting tired from all the fucking? Shouldn't they be pulling out, throwing some loose change on the ground, and letting us go on our way?
Apparently not. We seem to have, crucially, screwed up the way we were supposed to receive our rough violation. There's been too much cheek clenching and crying. We need more practice and they're willing and able to give it to us.
The $140-$170 barrel that OPEC predicts, isn't even the worst case scenario. $7 dollar a gallon gas could be in our near future and the current national debate is over how much drilling we need to do here. Just offshore or is there some way we can extract essential oil from the elderly by building some sort of crude human derrick? Alternative fuels and public transportation infrastructure are the patchouli stinking dreams of the unserious. Frankly, I have low hopes. In ten years we're still going to be bitching about public transportation, alternative fuels, and gas prices because some Texas backbencher didn't think any of the plans gave enough incentives to Exxon or Mitch McConnell wanted to stall in an attempt to make midterm "democrats aren't solving problems" election gains.
Either that or we're just a few months away from living out Mad Max. I know which one I'm hoping for. Critically, this is a Mad Max scenario without the whimsy, mirth, and gyrocopters of said trilogy.
Fuck your fellow man, it's garroting and shanking time. See you on the killing fields. I'll be in the armored These Bastards SUV, ramming the school bus you filled with women, children, and precious gasoline.
Photo by Flickr user bryanburke used under a Creative Commons license
A weary nation sees an end to it's dramatic turnip shortage as it looks towards Mars. Vegan sci-fi writers celebrate validation of their stories on endless fields of Martian arugula.
US accused of holding terror suspects on prison ships
We're only one step away from torturing detainees in floating balloon prisons. Because, as Grandpa Simpson so eloquently put it: "The government don't control the skies!" Neither does the Geneva convention, UN, or the World Court on War Crimes and Human Rights abuses.
Reported U.S. Raid Triggers Outrage
Maybe al-Maliki is a bit of an ineffective dick, but still, it's probably best not to go around indiscriminately killing his cousins. Just a thought.
Romanian village re-elects dead mayor
"I know he died, but I don't want change," a pro-Ivascu villager told Romanian television. Why do I think this villager is going to be pushing message discipline and voter outreach for the RNC in November?
The end of the world as we know it?
We hope you like These Bastards. You better, we're about to be crushed together in a quantum singularity for the rest of eternity by the good folks at CERN. You bring the chips, we'll bring Jenga, it'll be a party.
In case you somehow got the idea that things were going well in the war on terror, the New York Times was kind enough today to provide a reality check.
After the Sept. 11 attacks, President Bush committed the nation to a “war on terrorism” and made the destruction of Mr. bin Laden’s network the top priority of his presidency. But it is increasingly clear that the Bush administration will leave office with Al Qaeda having successfully relocated its base from Afghanistan to Pakistan’s tribal areas, where it has rebuilt much of its ability to attack from the region and broadcast its messages to militants across the world.Though now that I think about it, maybe the Times has been too harsh on Mr. Bush's efforts. George has said he's working really really hard on this terrorism thing and he's a honest, straight shooter. Let's give him the benefit of the doubt and just look at what's supposedly so damaging about this report.
Maybe al Qaeda has reformed in Pakistan, but surely we have all the necessary field agents there tracking them down and putting them on the run.
One reason for this, according to two former intelligence officials directly involved in the Qaeda hunt, was that by 2006 the Iraq war had drained away most of the C.I.A. officers with field experience in the Islamic world. “You had a very finite number” of experienced officers, said one former senior intelligence official. “Those people all went to Iraq. We were all hurting because of Iraq.”Well we need those CIA officers to, uh, hunt down all those top global al Qaeda guys that are in Iraq. There aren't any, you say? Well.....uh.....who believes what David Petraeus says anyway?
Surely then, we at least have the resources to carry out what strikes and counter-terrorism actions we need in Afghanistan and Pakistan.
Current and former military and intelligence officials said that the war in Iraq consistently diverted resources and high-level attention from the tribal areas. When American military and intelligence officials requested additional Predator drones to survey the tribal areas, they were told no drones were available because they had been sent to Iraq.Ouch. Maybe what we do isn't so critical, what we really need is for Pakistan and Pervez Musharraf to take the lead. They know the area, they know the people, they know how to solve the problem.
To get Washington’s attention, the commander, Lt. Gen. Karl W. Eikenberry, ordered military officers, Special Operations forces and C.I.A. operatives to assemble a dossier showing Pakistan’s role in allowing militants to establish a haven.But surely that call was a wakeup to all the Bush admi...
Behind the general’s order was a broader feeling of outrage within the military — at a terrorist war that had been outsourced to an unreliable ally, and at the grim fact that America’s most deadly enemy had become stronger.
When General Eikenberry presented his dossier to several members of Mr. Bush’s cabinet, some inside the State Department and the C.I.A. dismissed the briefing as exaggerated and simplistic.Ok, that one was kind of a kick to the gut. Uhhhh, let me think for a minute.
Maybe by some sort of voodoo or other types of unholy black magics, we have divined where bin Laden is hiding so we don't need all the field officers, soldiers, equipment, intelligence, or help and co-operation of Pakistan.
But while Mr. Bush vowed early on that Mr. bin Laden would be captured “dead or alive,” the moment in late 2001 when Mr. bin Laden and his followers escaped at Tora Bora was almost certainly the last time the Qaeda leader was in American sights, current and former intelligence officials say. Leading terrorism experts have warned that it is only a matter of time before a major terrorist attack planned in the mountains of Pakistan is carried out on American soil.Shit.
Liberal.....media......bias? Just remember, if any attack does happen, that's good for Republicans.
Sunday, June 29, 2008
Despite these uncertainties, the CDC will, of course, continue testing. Still, Dr. David Acheson, associate commissioner for foods at the FDA, reminded reporters that the source of the outbreak might never be discovered.
We, These Bastards, believe we can offer some insight into this problem. After several minutes of careful reflection and exhaustive experimentation, we are prepared to offer this hypothesis...
Fritz Haber did it.
So this is apparently the hip new thing on Facebook. 18 and 19 year old kids changing their middle names, on Facebook, to "Hussein". Which, if you don't know because of some immunity to race-baiting GOP press releases, is the middle name of Barack Obama. The one that proves he's a muslimofascist. Apparently the plan is to convince rural, white, low education, low information Republicans who are also on Facebook, that Barack Obama isn't a muslim.
This is well intentioned, but painfully, painfully, painfully, painfully white. So much so that I'm feeling an ache in my white bone right now. In fact, I'm a little disappointed it isn't up on Stuff White People Like yet.
#105 "Appropriating ethnic names to naively identify with a political candidate and hide the fact that you're painfully white."
Being painfully white and a member of "the Facebook", I was going to do this. But sadly my middle name is already actually Hussein. Not because I'm all that into Obama, but because my parents had it legally changed to Hussein in 1988, after Saddam Hussein. You see, they're really, really into chemical warfare. My original middle name was Fritz Haber.
Sorry white, Facebook loving, eighteen year olds, I'm gonna have to let this one slide by without the coveted TB blessing. Good luck though.
You know that common problem we all have? Where we own so many houses that we just up and forget to pay the taxes on one of them? John McCain has that problem too.
You know when you're out running for President and you haven't been in a car without a chauffeur for years? You haven't even been able to drive yourself to your wife's private jet. You know how it gets the point where you don't even know what the price of gas despite it being one of the largest issues in the political campaign and after you just spent a whole week coming up with childish, pandering "solutions" to how oil companies could violently extract cash and jewels through our collective assholes? John McCain has that problem too.
Remember how you don't know how to use a computer, but to prove your hip and "with it" attitude you proclaim your knowldge of what "a google" and "the google" is? John McCain has that problem too.
Remember the millionaire heiress wife you married? John McCain does, and he'll see you and Clint at Bushwood for tee times.
So when any of those dirty leftist Defeatocrats try to remind you that he's an elitist, you just remember that John McCain is just like you. The black guy who was raised in poverty by his single mother is the elitist. NOT MCCAIN.
PLEASE DON'T GO! Everything was working out so well. Don't make us spend another season looking for a winger for Crosby. We found him: MARIAN HOSSA! What's it gonna take? Do we need to sign Marcel? Will it help if I play that inexplicable '70's German kitsch song about Mexico, that sounds like it's about you? Fine, I'll do it.
It's an easy 100 points this year, plus at least 50 million dollars. What's wrong with that? Don't make us sign Kristian Huselius or Ruslan Fedotenko. It won't be the same. Please stay. We'll get you John McCain's plane. Pens owner Ron Burkle will bring the ladies on his plane. It'll be a FIESTA MEXICANA!!!
Nah. Man's got a new plane.
The Republican Party's presumptive nominee will unveil his new campaign airplane on Monday: a Boeing 737-400.While several features of the winged STE have already been released, tomorrow's press conference promises a more comprehensive look inside McCain's new toy. Gearheads that we are, These Bastards would like this opportunity to give you a preview of the additional options ordered by Senator McCain...
The aircraft shares its name with McCain's ever-present campaign bus, which has been a staple of the candidate's 2000 and 2008 campaigns.
The 95-seat plane — with seats for the candidate, his staffers and the press — has the "Straight Talk Express" logo emblazoned on its fuselage.
--Fully-staffed cardiac care unit
--Original Edition Operation Wolf arcade cabinet
--Combination gin dispenser/three-panel make-up mirror with "Trollop" frosted lettering
--Daguerreotype of McCain and Abraham Lincoln playing billiards
--One of them newfangled touch-tone phones
--Pills. Lots and lots of pills.
DENVER — Faced with a surge in the number of proposed solar power plants, the federal government has placed a moratorium on new solar projects on public land until it studies their environmental impact, which is expected to take about two years.Contrast
The Bureau of Land Management says an extensive environmental study is needed to determine how large solar plants might affect millions of acres it oversees in six Western states — Arizona, California, Colorado, Nevada, New Mexico and Utah.
WASHINGTON — President Bush, reversing a longstanding position, will call on Congress on Wednesday to end a federal ban on offshore oil drilling, according to White House officials who say Mr. Bush now wants to work with states to determine where drilling should occur.
In Washington, the White House press secretary, Dana Perino, said Mr. Bush would urge Congress to “pass legislation lifting the Congressional ban on safe, environmentally friendly offshore oil drilling,” adding, “The president believes Congress shouldn’t waste any more time.”
The Bureau of Land Management: Working for you!
I'm not a demanding man, I'm just asking that you don't rub my nose in your garish, implausible, thousand foot neon lies.
I'll set aside the irony of George W. Bush denouncing a conspicuously illegitimate election. I'll also applaud his equally timely upcoming condemnations of the Spanish Inquisition, Germany's invasion of Poland, the Armenian Genocide, and overcooked ribeye.
For the time being, it's best we all focus on discerning just how loudly China laughs when the world's largest weapons dealer goes to the UN asking for an international arms embargo. I bet the Mandarin characters for "not fucking likely" are beautiful.
Saturday, June 28, 2008
President Bush has long maintained that in the long run, history will will vindicate him on Iraq. Well yeah, uh......about that. George, one of the first drafts of history is in.......it.....it isn't pretty. And the Army wrote it.
“We had the wrong assumptions and therefore we had the wrong plan to put into play,” said Gen. William S. Wallace, who led the V Corps during the invasion and currently leads the Army’s Training and Doctrine Command.
Faced with a brewing insurgency and occupation duties that they had not anticipated, Army units were forced to adapt. But organizational decisions made in May and June 2003 complicated that task.
L. Paul Bremer III, who replaced Jay Garner, the retired lieutenant general, as the chief civilian administrator in Iraq, issued decrees to disband the Iraqi Army and ban thousands of former Baath Party members from working for the government, orders that the study asserts caught American field commanders “off guard” and, in their view, “created a pool of disaffected and unemployed Sunni Arabs” that the insurgency could draw on.
Some of General Franks’s moves also appeared divorced from the growing problems in Iraq. Before the fall of Baghdad, Col. Kevin Benson, a planner at the land war command, developed a plan that called for using about 300,000 soldiers to secure postwar Iraq, about twice as many as were deployed.
PESHAWAR, Pakistan — In the last two months, Taliban militants have suddenly tightened the noose on this city of three million people, one of Pakistan’s biggest, establishing bases in surrounding towns and, in daylight, abducting residents for high ransoms.
The militants move unchallenged out of the lawless tribal region, just 10 miles away, in convoys of heavily armed, long haired and bearded men. They have turned up at courthouses in nearby towns, ordering judges to stay away. On Thursday they stormed a women’s voting station on the city outskirts, and they are now regularly kidnapping people from the city’s bazaars and homes. There is a feeling that the city gates could crumble at any moment.
The threat to Peshawar is a sign of the Taliban’s deepening penetration of Pakistan and of the expanding danger that the militants present to the entire region, including nearby supply lines for NATO and American forces in Afghanistan.
Pakistan Strikes at Taliban Militants
Pakistan's newly elected government launched the first major assault against militants in the country's volatile northwest on Saturday, destroying a militant leader's headquarters and shelling suspected hideouts of other fighters.
The offensive in the Khyber tribal region appeared to mark a refinement in strategy by the new government, backing its calls for peace deals in the tribal areas along the Afghan border with the threat of forceful action against militants who get out of line.
Heckuva job Musharraf! You're well on your way to being a failed nuclear state. I hope you saved some of those billions we gave you to do counter-terrorism against the Taliban, which you apparently spent on nothing. Or lap dances at some Islamabad Filly Corral. What am I saying, of course you saved those fat stack of cash, how else are you going to afford a palatial estate after you barely escape the country with your life. You're someone who thinks ahead. Thanks for hiding bin Laden too, we appreciate it.
PSYCH!!!! You haven't been paying attention the past 7 years! The State Department hates the deal (outside of Rice), the agreement doesn't say that the North Koreans will turn over all their papers on nuclear weapons and programs only that they "will discuss" doing so, that list will only contain plutonium programs not uranium programs if they even turn it over, and they didn't destroy the Yongbyon facility, just the cooling tower, which can not only be rebuilt rather easily, but might not even be needed due to the facility's close proximity to a river. It was all PR bullshit.
You are magnificent bastards, Bush Administration. Magnificent. I salute you.
Edit: Apparently Cheney was against it, though probably not for any good reason, like it was a bad deal, and Bush did on the hopes that it would "improve his legacy." Buddy, that ship has fuckin' sailed.
Also, this. Key grafs:
But the declaration gave no information about its programme to enrich uranium or its sharing of nuclear technology with other rogue states - two demands that Washington had previously insisted were non-negotiable if a deal was to be reached.
This was a significant backdown in America's approach to a state that Mr Bush once described as part of the "axis of evil".
"There are some big big holes in this which are going to attract criticism inevitably," said Michael Green, an East Asia expert at the Centre for Strategic and International Studies. "The North Koreans have whittled us down to where we are, which is essentially we're giving them everything we've promised at this stage in exchange for just the plutonium piece."
In case you forgot, we got into this diplomatic clusterfuck when Bush essentially canceled a Clinton era deal because they were enriching uranium, which wasn't part of the original Clinton deal. North Korea said "fuck it", started making the quicker and easier plutonium bombs and became a nuclear state. Now we're essentially moving back to the framework of the earlier Clinton deal, except North Korea gets to keep the plutonium they already weaponized as well as whatever bombs they made, keep enriching uranium, and they get a bunch of sanctions eased off.
I say again, bravo Bush. Everything you touch turns to shit. Try not to burn down the White House when you leave, Clouseau.
Then he quickly comes out and says he’ll fight to get the telcom immunity stripped out of it, but apparently not fight that hard because “My view on FISA has always been that the issue of the phone companies per se is not one that overrides the security interests of the American people." Ouch Constitution, protect your flank next time and don’t dress so suggestively, with your rights and ideals out there swinging around for everyone to see.
Then he followed FISA up by stating that we need to extend the death penalty to non-murder crimes, and finished it up by trying not to sound like a liberal and not sound in any way combative over the Supreme Court decision on DC handguns and triggerlocks.
This is what’s known in politics as putting on the Dry Hump the Political Center pants. I want to know what happened to the Change pants. We all liked those pants 'Rack. They looked good, where are they? Oh yeah, you took them off when you decided you liked the look of the I Want To Be President pants. Do me a big favs Barry, ok? Put on the Big Boy pants, you know the ones with a built in spine, and filibuster and stall the shit out of that FISA bill. Then pass a good version if or when you are President. It’s a really fucking awful bill right now. Pretty please with a cherry on top? Thanks.
Don't make me use the These Bastards time machine to go back and vote for Chris Dodd. I'll use it, I warned you.
Friday, June 27, 2008
The Federal Marriage Amendment, bitches!!!!!!
Simply put the bill wants to make sure that:
Marriage in the United States shall consist only of the union of a man and a woman. Neither this Constitution, nor the constitution of any State, shall be construed to require that marriage or the legal incidents thereof be conferred upon any union other than the union of a man and a woman.
Now, go click on the cosponsors. Don't worry, I'll wait.
Senator David "the Bayou Whoremaster" Vitter (R-Louisiana) and
Senator Larry "Tap Twice For Love, Once if You're Out of T.P." Craig (R-Idaho)
Not that I think this'll pass, but couldn't you Republicans just knock the names of the two least convincing marriage advocates in politics (unless Mitch McConnell fucked a dog and I didn't hear about it) off the bill?
What I mean is: STOP DOING MY JOB! I'm supposed to take something and make a smug, wiseass remark about it. It's called blogging. You've already done all the work. Gay sex in a bathroom and hookers. For fuck's sake, leave me with something.
EDIT: The General shows us the way.
That's how Republican strategist Grover Norquist decided he wants to label Barack Obama. Thumbs up from me, Grove-dawg! I'm incapable of enjoying anything other than someone else's misery, so I need you guys to lose this election big. More of this please.
But remember everyone: He's not a racist. Because. And stuff.
I guess he thinks pointing out blackness is an electoral winner. Because Barack Obama is, if you haven't heard, a black skinned black guy who is black. Also he's a Muslim, unless you're too smart to believe that, in which case he's a crazy black separtist with a crazy black preacher who is black. BLACK I SAY!
I guess because this ad,
and this button
Anyone want to put odds on when the "N-Bomb" gets dropped? I'm saying early Septemberish, southern state congressman (feels like an Alabama or a Kentucky), GOP closed door fundraiser.
In reading up on the day's events I happened to run across a lovely little story about Mugabe's wife, Grace.
Apparently Grace is a big time shopper. Now Europe put a ban on the Mugabe's being allowed even enter the continent, but due to a quirk in the ban they are allowed to attend UN meetings. When Robert goes to these meetings lovely little Grace thieves money out of the Zimbabwe treasury and goes on monster shopping sprees.
Apparently the Mugabe's do this so often that the people of Zimbabwe have given Grace the nickname of "The First Shopper". Now as this is somewhat of a humorous website and the people of Zimbabwe are new to this satire and sarcasm game, let me make one suggestion. Given the fact that your country's inflation rate is anywhere from 24,000% to 150,000% and your economy and country are in shambles, may I suggest the nickname of "The Only Shopper" or "The Degenerate Animal Who Steals From You As Her Husband Rapes Your Country." The latter sacrifices wit for accuracy, so YMMV.
But what company, dear reader, would be so crass and spineless to take hundreds of thousands of dollars stolen from the poor, beleaguered people of Zimbabwe? You guessed it: Ferragamo. At least we know why Grace shops Ferragamo, because as she says “I have very narrow feet, so I wear only Ferragamo.” Well, of course, designer heels are what I wear for A-level arch support. Fierce!
Now I know you're saying to yourself "I can't believe there's a fashion conglomerate that not only pads it profits on the backs of third world manufacturing labor, but would also be so craven as to knowingly accept the stolen funds of an oppressed people from the wife of a dictator?" Shocking, I know, but try and hold back your disbelief. Maybe I'm too harsh on Ferragamo. Maybe they're going to make handbags out of a distilled form of the pure disgust people should feel towards them. I'd buy one!
But, c'mon Europe. If you aren't going to do anything about Zimbabwe other than bitch at us for not doing anything (and thanks, but we're already fucking up 2 countries, don't need to start on a third), could you at least stop these shits from going on shopping sprees in your country? Why even allow them to go to UN meetings? Mugabe isn't going to learn or contribute, just apparently because he likes sitting in front of microphones with his name on a placard. Even better yet, say it's okay for them to come and just fucking arrest them and have them tried at the Hague for all that shit they've done. I know, I know, Euro 2008 is going on. But it'll be over after Sunday, so get on it.
If that works we'll even let you do it to Bush, Cheney, Wolfowitz, Feith, Rumsfeld, Barney the dog and anyone else you'd like to put up for war crimes. C'mon, one hand washes the other. We'll send them over to be the all-star judges of a bratwurst eating contest in Hamburg and the second they step off the plane you slap the manacles on them. Deal?
Sens. John Kerry, Bob Corker, and Sheldon Whitehouse today announced the passage of their legislation to remove former South African President Nelson Mandela from the terror watch list. The bill grants the Secretary of State, in consultation with the Departments of Justice and Homeland Security, the authority to waive U.S. travel restrictions on President Mandela and other members of the African National Congress (ANC.)People might be wary of letting Mandela off the hook, but i think it's safe. He's been out of prison for a while and hasn't re-offended, so I think we can let him into the country without a full cavity search.
Mandela and his fellow ANC members remain on the list for activities they conducted against South Africa’s apartheid regime decades ago. The senators hope the passage of this legislation will end this embarrassing impediment to improving U.S.-South Africa relations.
While some will applaud Congress getting on top of this in such a timely manner (only 18 years since he was freed), it of course moves on to a White House where one of the more prominent members of the executive branch *coughcheneycough* voted against a resolution calling for Mandela's release. So getting him off the terrorist watch list isn't a slam dunk.
Maybe Cheney's caution in 1986 was right, this could be the opening Mandela has been lying in wait for. You've got to be on your game when dealing with these 90 year old peace-niks. Maybe we should have just given him a nice hat or something for his birthday.
After being restrained by five police officers and at least as many injections of horse tranquilizer, Matthew (affecting a British accent) surmised, "Plainly, there are lit-rally five or six topics of grave importance yet to be addressed by The Daily Show or The Onion. Regarding those, we aim to do decently in these coming weeks before growing weary and re-launching as something of a ribald porn site."
Sean, wide-eyed and angry for no apparent reason, exclaimed, "We're going to have some evil-assed political, social and cultural commentary presented in the form of this bleeding-edge technology called a 'blog.' If we weren't such geniuses, I would be surprised nobody had thought of this before."
The two men, who clearly have very little going for them, further clarified their intention to take on so-called sacred cows and provide biting insight, or something, as a bemused crowd humored their naiveté. The misguided perpetrators hoped their meager insight, appalling lack of tact or basic compassion, and eagerness to employ terms like "fuckfistastic" would lead them down the path to untold internet blogosphere power.
A young attendee, there as part of a paternity suit against one of the hacks, added, "Don't they know that there are hundreds of people doing the exact same thing as they are? Except that those people are good and get paid for it and these guys aren't and won't."
Several members of the crowd muttered similar indictments to one another, with one brave soul eventually levying a question directly at the stage. The man was then immediately struck in the face by a projectile later identified by authorities as a frozen ball of human feces packed with metal shavings. One investigating officer later remarked, on condition of anonymity, "You've got to be truly dead inside to weaponize your own excrement."
At this point the crowd went from unruly to openly hostile and moved against the pair of solipsists. Matthew kicked the lectern down off the stage and into the wheelchair-accessible section before admonishing the assembly. "Doubt is treason and will be punished! One day, we'll be above the law! We'll buy and sell all of you ingrates, I fucking swear!"
Side-arming handfuls of D batteries at the assailants, Sean added, "Then we'll buy you again just so we can promise you pensions before shipping your jobs off to Vietnam for pennies on the dollar! Ha ha!”
Raining blows upon the small and infirm, Matthew preached from a bible of his own creation. “Welcome to the new world order! We will show you the way to intellectual purity! My words and fists are truth! Come, receive enlightenment!”
Having exhausted his supply of batteries, Sean began swinging a metal folding chair and screaming, “I wield honesty like a cudgel, you cretins! Civility is an abomination! Live by our message! Mold your society to our words! THESE BASTARDS IS GOD’S PERFECT CREATION!”
Following this brief and frank exchange of viewpoints, Matthew and Sean escaped off stage and into a waiting golf cart, the only vehicle their insurance companies were confident supplying for the event. As they sped away from the riot both men seemed pleased with the announcement and commended each other on their restraint.
"I give it 3 months, tops," said the bloodied youth as he wrung court-issued documents in his shaking hands.
None of the assembled party, only two of whom escaped injury, rose to disagree with the assessment.