Thursday, February 19, 2009

Ah, Israel, the holy land, light unto the nations! Barely a month after valiantly killing 1300 Gazans, maiming and wounding thousands more, and leaving the rest for dead in an open-air prison, Israel has stood up for its right to stand up to other people's rights by forming its most hawkish possible government. A lesser nation might have wavered in the face of a merciless Palestinian onslaught of pleading and stump-waving, but Israel realizes this is a war between good and evil, right and wrong, civilization and those too poor to afford civilization. True, it's far from a fair fight - Israel has a mere three hundred nuclear warheads while the Palestinians have countless rocks to throw - but somehow the pluck and determination of this scrappy regional superpower has prevailed over the deadly horde of orphans, beggars and amputees who threaten to live next to it.

Israel's critics will forever bicker over the spilled milk of Israeli policy - a few thousand homes demolished here, a few thousand corpses over there - but we must allow that Israel has a right to defend itself, and we must also allow that defending itself necessarily entails the indiscriminate bombing of thousands of screaming refugees. After all, if an implacable terrorist enemy had been launching rockets at one of your villages, wouldn't you do everything in your power to stop them? And once those same implacable terrorist enemies agreed to a cease-fire, wouldn't you break that cease-fire by bombing them and their families, reasoning that they are, after all, implacable terrorist enemies, and not to be trusted? And when you went to bomb those terrorists and their families, wouldn't you also bomb everyone and everything around them, reasoning that only a terrorist would live near, go to school with, or be hospitalized in the same vicinity as a terrorist? And when you went to bomb everything around them, wouldn't you be sure to plan that bombing months before the event that nominally precipitated it? And before planning that massive bombing campaign, wouldn't you be sure to cut the entire population off from terrorist food, militant medicine, and jihadist electricity for months in advance? And when that population retaliated against your pre-retaliation retaliation by launching rockets at one of your villages, wouldn't that merely confirm their nature as implacable terrorist enemies who must be destroyed at any cost?

Yes, we may be tempted to mourn the civilian dead, but in killing those civilians, isn't Israel merely protecting itself against future terrorists who would otherwise go on to retaliate against Israel for the deaths of their children? And yes, we may be tempted to mourn the deaths of the children, but in killing those children, isn't Israel simply preemptively taking out future militants who would otherwise grow up to avenge the deaths of their parents? As much as we might all yearn for peace, history has shown that Palestinians understand only violence. Well, violence and Arabic, but Arabic is notoriously difficult to learn, while most of us can become fluent in violence in just under a semester.

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posted by the Medium Lobster at 11:38 AM
Monday, February 2, 2009

"The earth will quake and the sea will boil and the moon will be as blood and every knee shall bow before the coming of the Fafblocalypse!" says Giblets.
"Or we could take the bus home," says me.
"The bus is damned!" says Giblets. "It is dumb and lame and smells like bus-smell and its name shall be struck from the Book of Life which is the second death!"
"I don't see a book a life," says me goin through the knapsack. "We got some mad libs an a ol Count Chocula box an a copy a Dr. Seuss's Gustavus Goose and the Moose on the Loose."
"Then the bus's name shall be struck from that!" says Giblets. "Which is, like, one and a half deaths at least."
"Maybe we can take the train then," says me.
"Amtrak is also damned!" says Giblets. "All are lame and fallen short of the glory of Giblets! Fetch the list of plagues!"
"Sugar, corn syrup, high fructose corn syrup," says me readin the Count Chocula box. "Lecithin, niacin, potassium sorbate, potassium benzoate..."
"On the first day will come the plague of rats!" says Giblets. "On the second day will come the plague of even fatter rats! On the third day will come ice cream."
"See, there you go!" says me. "Everybody likes ice cream."
"Ice cream full of rats!" says Giblets. "On the fourth day will come the plague of locusts. On the fifth day will come the plague of tiny rats riding locusts and throwing tiny rat spears at everybody! On the sixth day will come the plague of frogs!"
"What happens if the plague of frogs starts eatin the plague of locusts?" says me.
"Well then Giblets will smite the plague of frogs with a plague of snakes," says Giblets.
"But won't the plague of snakes just eat the plague of rats?" says me.
"Then Giblets will just have to smite the plague of snakes with a plague of mongooses!" says Giblets.
"But then the mongooses will just eat the rest a the locusts," says me.
"Oh, stupid insectivores!" says Giblets. "The food chain is damned!"
"Hey, I know!" says me. "Maybe we can just forget the whole plague thing an try somethin different. Like insteada blowin up the world we could make it stay after school or boycott its advertisers or write a strongly-worded letter to its ombudsman."
"Never! The world has been wicked and forgotten our commandments!" says Giblets. "The first commandment is to obey our commandments. The second commandment is to obey the first commandment. The third commandment is why aren't you obeying our commandments? The fourth commandment is you are damned!"
"They're the time-tested moral truths this country was founded on," says me.
"And that's why it's damned!" says Giblets. "Which reminds me, it's time for the roll call of the damned! When you hear your name called line up on the left-hand side for the lake of fire and rats. Remember no pushing or cutsies! Cutsies will be damned!"
"I don't see who you're talkin to," says me lookin around.
"Well we musta got here early," says Giblets. "The rest of the world should be here any minute now."
"I still don't see em," says me. "Maybe you forgot to send the invites."
"No, Giblets sent them out like a month ago!" says Giblets. "They were on the little Transformer party cards that said 'end of the world, Monday at three, save the date'."
"Well maybe you shoulda told everybody there was gonna be cake," says me.
"The cake was gonna be the big surprise!" says Giblets kickin the cake. "Well no more Mr. Nice Armageddon! Double the rats! Triple the plagues! Release the ominous dream midgets! Everybody's extra-damned now!"
"I don't think anybody's coming, Giblets," says me feedin a piece a carrot to one a the rats.
"Well obviously!" says Giblets. "And now Giblets has sixteen plagues and a rented lake of fire that are just going to waste!"
"No, I mean I don't think anybody's coming ever," says me.
"Giblets doesn't understand," says Giblets.
"There's nobody left, Giblets," says me. "The world's already ended."
The rat finishes the carrot and looks around. It's pretty quiet.
"You talk crazy talk!" says Giblets. "The world can't end!"
"It musta happened a while ago," says me. "The good guys were busy bombin the bad guys for tryin to bomb the good guys back, an in the meantime the ocean started rising, so they bombed the ocean, which worked okay till they started runnin outta ocean. Then they started drillin in the ocean for more ocean, and -"
"Why didn't you tell Giblets!" says Giblets.
"Well you seemed so excited," says me.
"But! Bhaheh!" says Giblets. "But Giblets likes the world."
"It's not so bad Giblets," says me. "We got some good mossy rocks, an the rain still works, an maybe if you're good in a coupla hundred million years we'll get some kinda squid people."
Giblets sniffs. "Really?" says Giblets. "You promise?"
"Well first you gotta show you're responsible," says me. "Like maybe we can start you out with some bugs an microbes for a while, an if you take good care of em maybe in a coupla geological epochs we can get you some vertebrates or hunter-gatherers or a puppy."
"Giblets promises he'll be good!" says Giblets. "Giblets will feed the world and walk it and play with it every day!"
"Well, okay then," says me pickin up the last couple rats. "We can start off with these guys an see where it goes from there."
"Giblets will name this one Atom, for he will be the foundational element of our bold new world!" says Giblets.
"And I'll name this one Steve, after my uncle Steve," says me.
"And together they shall claim tomorrow for all ratkind!" says Giblets.
"Could be worse," says me.


posted by fafnir at 8:29 AM

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