The Null Device


In what could be a further sign of strained relations between Airstrip One and the cheese-eating surrender monkeys, Britain's Chancellor Gordon Brown announces plans to adopt US-style economic policies, moving away from the inefficiency of Eurosocialism, whilst promising to maintain a third way, tempering laissez-faire zero-friction capitalism with some degree of "social justice".

Could we be witnessing the start of the breakdown of Britain's membership in the EU? Commentators have been suggesting for a while that Britain has more culturally in common with Calvinist/capitalist America than with the wine-drinking, bureaucracy-choked welfare states of Europe, with some suggesting that Britain would belong more within the United States than in the EU.

(Hypothetical scenario: if Britain was to leave the EU and join the United States, how could the arrangement be made to work? Would England, Wales and Scotland be three states, would they be divided into smaller states, or would the U.S. federation have to be reengineered to accommodate the larger entities? What would the major issues of contention be?)

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The rubble has not yet settled in Iraq, but the, umm, peace dividend is already in sight. All-American consumer-electronics manufacturer Sony has registered the trademark "Shock and Awe", for use for a PlayStation II game. Now you too can be a hero and chalk up awesome body counts whilst fighting for democracy and liberty and all that shiznit, right in your living room. Hardcore, d00d!

A spokesman for Sony PlayStation in the UK admitted the company might not stock the game in Britain and Europe owing to political sensitivities.


It seems that somebody came to this website in the past 24 hours searching for "female photos of big foreheads". They probably left disappointed. Meanwhile, someone else arrived looking for "i may not go down in history but i'll go down on your sister". Classy.


We won! We won! God Bless America, we won! And we only had to kill 1,000 or so Iraqi civilians and maim a few more to do it. We'll soon see resounding with opinion that the goddamnliberals who gleefully predicted another Vietnam with scores of Americans coming home in body bags are now thoroughly discredited. Mind you, the fact that Baghdad fell so easily pretty much disproves the rationale for invading Iraq (Saddam's notorious WMDs, which he'd have undoubtedly used by now).

Now all Bush has to do is hold on until November 2004 and sweep in with a landslide. Assuming the economy doesn't tank in the meanwhile. Though the timing leaves time for a quick conquest of Syria (or possibly some other country), so the newly liberated Iraqis have somewhere to roam with their new Qualcomm CDMA phones.

Mind you, winning the peace will be harder than winning the war. Though once FOXNews take their gung-ho theme music and title graphics and go home, only a few politically-suspect intellectual types will pay attention to what's going on over there. (How much attention is focused on Afghanistan these days?)


An interesting thesis on the social history of Iraq, in particular the Ba'ath party's systematic annihilation of any possibility of a civil society arising any time soon.

In her book, The Outlaw State, she describes a common behavioral reaction that Iraqis exhibited when encountering foreign visitors like herself who happened to ask even apolitical questions. Sciolino referred to it as "the blank stare." (Sciolino, 77). By this she meant that when asked a question that might seem harmless to a Westerner, but that to an Iraqi connoted even the slightest hint that something political could be read into his or her answer, it was simply safest to reply by assuming a blank stare. For one could never be sure that an informer was not lurking nearby. Makiya takes this argument even further. Accordingly, to live in Iraqi Ba`thist society requires not just assuming the blank stare but putting on a mask
In one case, a government official and his family were executed and their house bulldozed simply because he happened to attend party where someone known to him had made a joke about Saddam in his presence. Informers were present at the time but his failure to report the joke cost him and his family their lives. (Miller and Mylroie, 50). In a more recent case, a telephone operator was executed simply for warning a businessman not to use a line that was bugged.

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