Month: December 2008

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WaMu: The Power of Yes

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On December 29, 2008
This is a pretty remarkable story about Washington Mutual, though most of its particulars — amphetamine-snorting mortgage supervisors aside — won’t be news to anyone who’s ever listened to “The Giant Pool of Money” episode of This American Life. During Mr. [Kerry] Killinger’s tenure, WaMu pressed sales agents to pump out loans while disregarding borrowers’ […]

No Endgame

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On December 28, 2008

I don’t have many additional thoughts on the breaking of the Gaza ceasefire. The strategic aims seem clear; Hamas wished to provoke an Israeli attack in anticipation that the reaction will help

And Again…

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On December 27, 2008

Some depressing holiday news: Waves of Israeli aircraft swooped over the Gaza Strip on Saturday, firing missiles at Hamas’s security headquarters and killing more than 200 people, bringing the highe

Grenade

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On December 27, 2008
Hadn’t seen this before… I wonder how many people have survived after throwing themselves onto grenades? There’s not even a category on wikipedia: A Royal Marine who threw himself on to an exploding grenade to save the lives of his comrades is to receive the George Cross. Lance Corporal Matthew Croucher stepped on a trip-wire […]

Sam Huntington

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On December 27, 2008

It appears that Sam Huntington has passed. Soldier and the State is a fine book. Many of his other works I can’t stand, to the point of repugnance. It’s fair to say, though, that virtually

Cooking the Books

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On December 27, 2008
As to the absurd notion that George W. Bush has read several hundred books since 2005, I can’t offer much beyond what Steven Benen and Matt Stoler have already provided. In the very least, this is an elaborate put-on by Rove; to be slightly less charitable, his insistence that Bush devoted time this year to […]

Charlton Heston? Really?

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On December 27, 2008

I have never pictured Jack Aubrey as looking even vaguely like Charlton Heston, but apparently Patrick O’Brian did. I suppose that I might be more open minded about that possibility if I hadn

Torture and Mitigation

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On December 27, 2008

A while ago, Ross Douthat wrote a meandering, self-indulgent post about his feelings on torture, suggesting that while he felt torture was bad, he could also understand why the Bush administration had

This Really Must be Stopped…

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On December 26, 2008
Think of the children: With powerful and dynamic lyrics, each stanza of “Locked and Loaded” is meant to exhibit the complete synergy of each imperative component of the fight. For instance, lyrics for the combat control Airmen who are calling in the drop says: “Walk in the shade of the clouds at night,” “Crawling in […]

Little Blue Pills…

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On December 26, 2008

Creative COIN: U.S intelligence officials use “novel incentives,” but this is not limited to Viagra. Sometimes, “notoriously fickle warlords and chieftains” can be won over wit

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