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… but not a bomb.

A bomb is what went off at her concert in Manchester, UK, as crowds of young teenagers left the concert. A bomb is what an asshole Islamist suicide bomber set off in the middle of that crowd, killing at least 22 people and injuring at least 59 others.

And the bombing suspect was already known to have ties to Al Qaeda. Had even been ratted on by his family who told authorities that he was dangerous. Was even on a watch list after he got back from a stint in a terrorist training camp in Libya.

What is needed to stop terrorism isn’t Big Brother listening in on every phone call, observing every street corner with video cameras, or other things of that sort. What is needed to stop terrorism is simple human intelligence — following up when a family calls you and says their kid is a violent Islamist extremist, for example. No amount of listening in on phone calls was necessary in order to identify this asshole as a threat to public safety. All that was necessary was for the authorities to listen to his family, who was saying loud and clear that their kid was a time bomb waiting to go off.

And they didn’t, so people are dead.

I expect there to be plenty of folks who now are going to want to impose all sorts of draconian bullshit to “stop terrorism”. All that’s going to do is add more noise to hide the signal. What’s needed is to listen to the human beings who are already telling us who the dangerous people are, not bullshit like spying on everybody’s phone calls or keeping people from taking their laptop computers onto airliners.

But I suppose that’s common sense, and common sense is no good when there’s power to seize and money to be made pushing snake oil…

– Badtux the Exasperated Penguin

Shaken, not stirred

And a fond farewell to Roger Moore, who has passed on, ceased to be, expired, gone to meet his maker, pushing up daisies, bereft of life, and joined the choir invisible. Roger Moore was always a controversial Bond. He lacked the virile brutishness of a Sean Connery or, more recently, Daniel Craig, and his take on the character was far different from theirs and indeed far different from the books by Ian Fleming. Still: Roger Moore put the bon vivant into James Bond. Roger Moore’s James Bond was an elegant wit always quick with a quip who also happened to be a secret agent capable of taking out bad guys with his little pinky (or at least with one of the many gadgets secreted upon his person). He managed to single-handedly make some of the worst Bond movies ever scripted watchable, despite scripts that were laughably bad in many cases (Octopussy? Really?!).

And of course his non-Bond stint as “The Saint” was the prototype of his Bond character.

Despite the criticisms of his performances, criticisms that in many cases were more a function of the appallingly bad scripts that he was given than of Moore’s performance itself, Roger Moore brought the class to the Bond franchise. He lived, he made his mark, and now Roger Moore is no more.

Bon voyage.

– Badtux the Obituaries Penguin

… and where it’s goin’, everybody knows.

Bruce Springsteen, channeling his inner Woody Guthrie with The Ghost of Tom Joad off his 1995 album by that name. 22 years later, and things ain’t really changed.

– Badtux the Music Penguin

Mysterious Glowy Ball stroked by Trump

Summoning the Hellmouth

In Florida today, a Hellmouth opened at Mar A Lago, leading to a leak of petulant orange demons in the past. Because time works in strange ways near Hellmouths.

Before that, the Orange Racist Pussy Grabber was stroking a mysterous glowing orb in Saudi Arabia as his daughter Ivanka grifted $100M from the Saudies for her charity. Rumors that Trump was summoning the armies of Sauron to emerge from a Hellmouth and conquer Earth thus far have proven unfounded. So far. But he made his supporters mad anyhow, because he gave a speech that was, like, sensible and stuff, and didn’t call Muslims demons from hell even once before he finished off the day by eating a well-done Trump Steak slathered in ketchup.

The next day, in Israel, the Orange Racist Russian Stooge accidentally confirmed that he leaked Israeli secrets to Russia. Oops! But he had fun in Israel anyhow. He got to see a wall. It was a YUUUUGE wall. He got to wear a little beanie hat and stroke the wall. He liked that. Rumors that he asked the Israelis how much it cost to build that wall thus far have not been confirmed.

After this, Deadbeat Donnie was beat, and had to go to sleep. But never fear, there’s always tomorrow!

– Badtux the Snarky Penguin

Chelsea Wolfe, “Halfsleeper”, off her 2010 album The Grime and the Glow.

– Badtux the Music Penguin

He was a creep

I am perhaps tardy in talking about the death of Roger Ailes. They say don’t speak ill of the dead. Yet what can I say that’s good about a man who had no redeeming qualities? Other than, “He’s dead. Good.”

It is perhaps appropriate that Roger Ailes’s introduction to politics was via Richard Nixon in 1967. Richard Nixon was a twisted man who required a corkscrew to put his boots on in the morning, and Ailes and Nixon got along with each other like macaroni and cheese, spaghetti and meatballs, slime and slugs. Nixon was evil in the way of insecure men with a desire for power and no moral scruples, but Ailes was evil just because. Ailes was a master of the Big Lie, never letting the truth out of its barn if a lie would do, because he didn’t care about polluting the body politic with fake news to keep people confused and uncertain — all he cared about was corrupting the public discourse so that evil could win. As such, he led the media propaganda efforts of Nixon and Reagan and Bush 1, then met, finally, someone who was both evil and rich enough to make his ultimate dream come true. I am talking, of course, about Rupert Murdoch, who sadly still walks this earth despite making Richard Nixon look like an honest man.

Ailes was a creep, a serial molester of women, a serial molester of the truth. When he convinced Murdoch to fund his Fox News Network, he un-ironically proclaimed it to be “Fair and Balanced” at every point in time, where “fair” meant both falsehood and truth was given equal crdibility, and “balanced” meant that both good and evil were given moral equivalence. He polluted the public discourse to the point where frothing white snowflake MAGAts truly believed that there were evil Communist Liberals out there whose sole goal was to exterminate the white race, something which any reasonable person would simply laugh at, but after two decades of concerted propaganda there were few reasonable people on that side of the bench, only true believers who believed every lie that Ailes had his network present. Every morning, every single person at Fox News Network got the day’s talking points from Ailes. Their job was to reiterate those talking points, over and over again, repeating the Big Lie over and over until it became not something incredibly racist and venal and evil but, rather, became normal. Normalizing evil was the thing that Ailes loved to do, and the results can be seen on every Youtube video that attracts attention from the rightward side of the political spectrum, and every newspaper comments section, where people spew evil as if it were simply common wisdom, and it’s the people *not* spewing evil who are attacked and marginalized.

It is too bad there is not a Hell, for if there was, Ailes would certainly be condemned to inhabit it for the rest of eternity for his work in the service of evil. But there is not a Hell, and so all we can do is talk about the evil that Ailes did — an evil that will far outlast his worm-eaten body, alas, an evil that has the potential, in all likelihood, to destroy the nation and the world itself.

That is Roger Ailes. He was a creep. And evil. Let us never forget that.

– Badtux the Obituaries Penguin

Mark Lanegan Band, “Judgement Time”, off their 2014 album Phantom Radio.

Judgement time is near.

– Badtux the Music Penguin