April 30, 2004

For the Poet Laureate

Niall Ferguson

Greetings, loyal minions. Your Maximum Leader already knows what he will be doing around noon on Sunday. He will be watching Book TV on C-Span. If you haven't read Ferguson's book Empire, your Maximum Leader commends it to you.

Your Maximum Leader saw a teaser for Ferguson's talk on Sunday. The teaser was part of a pre-recorded portion of the show. In it he was discussing the failure of the US to make good on the aftereffects of the Iraqi takeover. (Your Maximum Leader paraphrases....) It should be interesting. Your Maximum Leader hopes to give a review afterwards.

Carry on.

Mercenaries and Whatnot

Greetings, loyal minions. Your Maximum Leader commends the following article for your consideration. Anticipatory Retaliation: Mercenaries and Whatnot

Your Maximum Leader hopes to blog some this weekend. Lots of good stuff out there on his mind. But, Mrs. Villain is away for the weekend leaving the Villainettes and your Maximum Leader to fend for themselves.

Carry on.

George Will

Greetings, loyal minions. Your Maximum Leader was referred to George Will's latest Live and Let Vote by the AirMarshal yesterday. It well sums up some of my fears about turning over Iraq to a UN caretaker government.

Carry on.

Man sells wedding dress on E-bay!

Ok, if you have not seen it yet... check it out! Good for a laugh

I need to post more, it is turning into the smallholder show.

Back to the trenches.....

Update from the Maximum Leader: Yes, you do.

Den Beste has a Bloom County moment

Steven Den Beste writes the following, part of a much longer post [his repetition of "The Truth Is" is a reference to a Bloom County Sunday strip from years ago]:

The Truth Is that in the last two years one of the strongest currents in international diplomacy and rhetoric has been Tu Quoque. If you are vulnerable to a certain criticism, preempt that criticism by accusing your enemies of that same failure before they accuse you. One benefit is that you may muddy the waters enough so that the entire accusation is devalued, and even if you don't, when someone accuses you of that same failing it makes them look feeble and reactive.

It doesn't matter if there's any basis for the preemptive criticism, or whether it makes any sense. The point is to defuse the entire issue. One example is the ongoing characterization of Israeli action against the Palestinians as "terrorism" by Arab leaders, so as to try to deflect attention from the fact that the Palestinian "freedom fighters" are the ones truly engaged in terrorist attacks.

And now a monumental example of Tu Quoque is beginning to emerge. There has been a steady drumbeat of accusations by the leftist lunatic fringe that the real reason the Bush administration wanted to invade Afghanistan and Iraq was to advance the business interests of certain oil companies. It's never actually made any sense; if all the Bush administration were really interested in was oil, it would have been far easier to make a deal with Saddam than to invade.

But it's also becoming more and more apparent that an appallingly large amount of the vocal international opposition to Anglo-American plans for invasion of Iraq actually opposed the invasion because they were making out like bandits, as beneficiaries of the "Oil for Food" program. And apparently the two nations which made out the best were UNSC veto powers France and Russia, who by extraordinary coincidence also were the most intransigent opponents in the UNSC of the invasion.

It's the latest demonstration of the corruption, incompetence, and venality of the UN as an organization, but by no means the only one. Yet it is still the UN which opponents of the war turn to in their rhetoric as solution to the "problem" of the Anglo-American occupation of Iraq.

The Truth Is that anti-war leftists actually do think that America should "cut and run", just as Spain now has. But they're not so disconnected as to believe that they can actually sell that honestly. So their rhetoric is that the US and British should transfer control over Iraq to the UN, and largely withdraw their own forces in favor of "international forces" to take their place. But they no more believe that the UN would handle that job well than I do. The Truth Is that they believe that the only way they can convince the majority of Americans to pull out is to try to pretend that America would be replaced by someone else who would "finish the job", even though there's now damned good reason to believe that UN control over Iraq would be an utter catastrophe for Iraqis.

The Truth Is that many of them recognize that the primary justification for our invasion was to gain the opportunity to establish a liberal democracy there, in hopes of infecting the entire region with liberal ideas (using "liberal" in its traditional meaning) and of "destabilizing" the entire region. They recognize that to be dangers to themselves or to close friends of theirs, and hope to prevent it. If Iraq disintegrates into civil war, or if it is once again ruled by a brutal dictator, then the Iraqi people will again suffer but these leaders would all heave a sigh of relief. (And who knows? They might even be able to get back onto the gravy train again.)

The AirMarshal linked me to an alternative, and perhaps more pragmatic, point of view, here.


April 29, 2004

Prolific Smallholder?


Alas, I do not get days off like you folks in regular jobs. I have, however, been able to use a lull in paper grading to comply with the Maximum Leader's directive to post -- I would suggest that, when the revolution comes, perhaps only the poet and I will avoid the purge.

Book Challenge

I forgot to post this earlier.

page 23, fifth sentence:

"Centralization in agriculture causes huge transportation costs."

-- Joel Salatin, "Salad bar Beef"


I am proud to announce that the Minister of Propaganda has been hired to direct the final chapter of the Men In Black trilogy.

I don't want to do any spoilers, but the premise is that an Alien Armada arrives in the Solar System and demands that MIB "Deliver Jaime Pressly."

To Sweet Seasons Farm.

This Will Warm the Cockles of the Poet Laureate's Dank, Fetid Heart

SEOUL -- North Korean ruler Kim Jong Il's surprise summit in China last week took the top off of at least one of the Pyongyang government's best-kept secrets: The Dear Leader is losing his famed big hair.

The rest is at the Washington Post.

More Kerry Gloom

Richard Cohen agrees that Kerry is a piss-poor candidate. His example: Kerry's flubbed handling of Medalgate.


The situation was ready-made for humor, for an arid dismissal. Kerry was the hero -- Silver Star, Bronze Star, three Purple Hearts -- and the president had nothing to show for the Vietnam years except some nights he would like to forget...

But instead of dismissing Bush and Cheney with a lighthearted putdown of the sort that would prompt Bush to seek therapy, Kerry got angry. He waxed indignant. He said, in the manner of Rumpelstiltskin stomping the ground, "I'm not going to stand for it!" In doing so, he mimicked Bob Dole, who lost it entirely during the 1988 New Hampshire primary when he scowled at George H.W. Bush and snarled, "Stop lying about my record." For Dole, this was not good television.

Bush Will Win, Darn It All!

Enjoy Every Sandwich has a dead-on analysis of the Presidential Election. I find his criticisms of both Bush and Kerry very telling.

Go read it (scroll down to April 26).


The Prolific Posts of Smallholder

Looks like the Minister of Agriculture took two days off of work to celebrate his birthday.

April 28, 2004

The Maximum Leader Will Love This

Glove puppetry (http://www.guardian.co.uk/crime/article/0,2763,1202260,00.html): Another reason the Maximum Leader should be interned in a compost pile.

Smallholder's Calves

If things work, I'll have a picture of my boys frolicking in the upper pasture posted below.

Future Dinners at the Villainschloss

This makes me smile every evening. They know the sound of my truck so start mooing when I get home from work. I mix their bottles and walk back outside. At this point, they gallop to the barn like eager little kids. If you look at the smaller ones on the right, you can see how the twins are smaller than the others.

Smallholder Gets Hammered

No, I’m not talking about the boot shoot at Meehanschloss. (Note to my fellow bloggers: I have pictures of the boots shoot and am not afraid to post them if anyone blogs about ticks. Ever heard of the phrase “Mutually Assured Destruction?” It’s not just for mad dictators anymore!)

(Looking at those pictures, I am amazed at how young and thin we look. How did we stay so slim when at least half our calories were consumed in liquid form?)

(Many posts ago, the Maximum Leader explained that he didn’t go into politics because politics was no longer about ideas. Cow manure. He didn’t go into politics because he knew his liberal friends had pictures of him drinking beer out of footwear that would mysteriously arrive at the Washington Post as soon as he had sewn up the nomination.)

At any rate, here is the real reason for this post.

I had previously argued that animal rights advocates were misguided partially because they seemed to believe that animals lived in a Utopian environment. The Analphilosopher has handed me my head on a platter with his April 26 “Confusions and Fallacies About Animals, Part III” post.

While his strawman setup of:

“Animals kill each other, so why can’t we kill them?”

Doesn’t address the full nuance of my argument that humane farming actually decreases the suffering inevitable in “Old Bitch Nature,” it is close enough to cause me a bit of intellectual discomfort. He continues:

Aw, the heck with it: go to his site, bump up his traffic numbers and come back. I’ll wait.

Back already?

So here is the deal. My argument that farming can be more humane is skewered by KBJ. Try transposing my stance on the morality of killing and eating animals to the human realm. If “mother nature” is shown to be analogous to, say, just to make our example have the greatest emotional impact, a concentration camp, would you find the following argument persuasive?

“Well, I am giving a better life to the Jews in our humane camp than they would otherwise have in the other camps,” claimed OberKommandant Kleinhalter, “We offer our workers health care and nutritious food so they can serve our purposes. Of course, we do kill them in the end, but we strive to do it quickly and without pain.”

I, for one, wouldn’t want to defend the morality of that position. So KBJ has me squirming. This is not to say that I am about to betray my Forty-Eighter Wisconsin Dairy Farmer roots and become a vegan; he still hasn’t convinced me that animals have a claim to moral standing. But his destruction of one element of my defense is well crafted and convincing. I will have to rethink things a bit…

A good argument is a joy to ponder. Kudos to the professor.

Dulce et Decorum Est?

Hypothetical Question:

A friend is offered a job with the provisional authority in Iraq. The pay is good, but as we have seen on CNN, the danger is real.

As a friend, should you try to dissuade the person from taking the position?

As a patriot, is it wrong to try to keep talented people from helping the American war effort?

When I first started chewing on this nasty little kone (spelling, Big Hominid?) my first thought was Vietnam. It is 1969. My son has “got a letter in the mail: go to war or go to jail.” Do I encourage my child to go risk his life in a war that appears, as of 1969, to already be lost, or do I tell my child to go to Canada? Love and fear for my child and the desire not to see my progeny squander their life in a lost cause would war with teaching your child about obligations to country. If the collective country calls, how can a citizen say no?

My initial response is that this is a harder call than service in World War Two; we could hope for a positive outcome in the Big One AND our civilization’s very life was at stake.
But on the other hand is the need to uphold the social contract; you can’t just say no when society issues a requirement.

But the fact that the draft was involuntary makes this a poor analogy to the current situation. The hypothetical friend is volunteering for the assignment.

Shouldn’t we as a society applaud people who are willing to sacrifice for the greater good? We need heroes like Pat Tillmon to remind us of our better natures and the price of our freedoms. This concept is an easy one in the abstract. It is easy to praise strangers who heed the call of flag and duty. But when it comes to a friend, your natural fears and concerns shoulder aside the abstract patriotism.

Hell, if you will permit me to divulge a dirty little secret from my closet of cowardice, there is a part of me that thanks God on a daily basis that I had completed my service obligation and resigned my commission before the invasion of Iraq. This is not so much because of a fear of physical harm (though that is real). I was a bit nervous when my unit was on deck for the invasion of Haiti – the possibility of being shot at becomes clear in your imagination as you are packing up your gear to report to the assembly site. But even with that fear, part of me was willing to put aside personal preferences in the service of our nation. Leaving graduate school would have been a major inconvenience, but that was how I viewed it – as an inconvenience. I have a daughter now. The idea of leaving her and not helping her development as a person is obscene – if I was still under orders, I would leave- what choice would I have? - but I would be very, very unhappy. So I look at my daughter and thank God that I’m done with the army thing.
But I also look at my daughter and fear what Muslim extremists want to do to her and her future. If you have read my previous posts, I want Osama and the other Islamofascists dead, dead, dead. So I should support the war, right? Even if it means that I should encourage my friend to voluntarily put himself in harm’s way.

But the real problem is this: I don’t think the war will help protect my daughter’s future. Bush and his pals tried to do the occupation on the cheap and are intellectually incapable of changing their tactics. If Bush stays president, the insurgency will grow and we WILL lose. Big Hominid has frequently observed that the issue of national security will weigh heavily as voters make up their minds in November. I, for one, will pull the lever for Kerry on the national security issue. We need a new approach because the current one, t’aint workin’. And Rumsfeld won’t come up with a new approach. Winning (or at least, not losing and appearing weak to the fundamentalist crowd in the “Arab Street”) is important and I think only Kerry has a chance to win. But I’m in the minority. Most Americans aren’t going to switch horses midstream (to use Lincoln’s 1864 phrase) and Kerry is an awful, smarmy, mealy-mouthed candidate. I think Bush is going to be elected in a landslide. So we are going to lose.

If we are going to lose, and yet can’t get out, I’m reminded of Tom Lehrer’s comment: “beginning to feel like a Christian Scientist with appendicitis.” One of the most sobering things about the MacNamara documentary is when he admits that the administration KNEW we were going to lose Vietnam but couldn’t come up with an exit strategy. Can you imagine living with yourself after sending thousands of boys to die for a cause you knew was lost?

Which brings me back to my hypothetical friend. If one believes that the war is lost, than anyone who dies in Iraq is dying to no purpose. If I believe the chance of death is real and that my friend’s death will not advance the interests of my nation in any way, shouldn’t my concern for my friend trump patriotism?

So, if you remove the concept of God and Country from the equation, the only thing left to discuss is money. The occupation authority, operating on the principal of supply and demand, is offering very high salaries. It is moral and just for people to try to provide material comfort for their families. But that material comfort has to be balanced against a loving presence. A trip to Iraq would mean at least a year physically separated from family. This year could easily become two or three as contracts are extended (Yossarian’s experience of extension is not unique, as recently demonstrated by the Wisconsin National Guard) – though a civilian contractor probably has more leeway to refuse an extension than a soldier. There is a small but real chance that the physical separation might become permanent should my friend end up buried in a shallow grave.

So should I ask my friend to sacrifice wealth so that his children will have a greater chance of knowing their father?

Or, is it none of my stinkin’ business? Should I just butt out?

What do my fellow bloggers think? What would you say to this hypothetical friend?

April 27, 2004

Wo ist der AuBenminster?

Is he too busy with his thespian pursuits? I want to know how he is doing, goll darn it!

Amazon Priorities

I just schlepped over to Amazon to add a book to my wish list - "Brook Farm, the Dark Side of Utopia," after reading a review in the Washington Post. My master's thesis (alas, unfinished), was on a utopian experiment in Ripon, Wisconsin. I discovered that Amazon has added a new feature to wish lists - priorities! Woo-hoo! Now I can let my friends and family know that I want this particular history book more than I want this other book on pasture management.

Amazon wish lists. The greatest creation ever. Now if only I could get my creative-gift-giving sister-in-law to use Amazon and to stop buying me horshoe sets...


Until further notice, all Bloggers are enjoined to abstain from tick jokes.

Thank you for your cooperation.

Science Fiction for Movie Fans

My world history kids took a test yesterday. After one student had finished, he contentedly pulled out a science fiction book and read quietly for the remainder of the testing period.

I know that I should be ecstatic that a kid is reading for pleasure. I am. But I also was disappointed by the choice of reading material. I have observed a phenomenon in recent years – kids no longer read “stand alone” fiction. My readers are typically reading books that tie in with movies or video games. Yesterday it was a “Star Wars” book – something about Han Solo and Princess Leia’s Jedi children. Other kids read “Forgotten Realms” Dungeons and Dragons tie-ins or Star Trek novels. Very rarely do you see kids reading authors without connections to our consumerist mass media. Part of me wants to scream: “Read a real book!”

I suppose it makes me snobby, but why aren’t they reading Clarke, Asimov, Bradbury, or Vonnegut (I know Kilgore Trout agrees with me here). Okay, if they find the old masters boring, there is still a fresh crop of sci-fi writers – Orson Scott Card would top my list. How ‘bout Jerry Pournelle or Allen Dean Foster or Larry Niven or Piers Anthony (circa 1980s before he became a pulp novel factory)? If fantasy is your game, why not put away the D&D literary abortions and pick up Terry Pratchett, Terry Brooks, Card (again), Eric Flint, or Glenn Cook?

The most recent book I read for pleasure was Cook’s “Black Company*,” a well-plotted grunts-eye view fantasy novel. One of the major problems with adult life is that there is so little time for pleasure reading. Work, family, household tasks, and farming take up more hours than there are in a day. Now, I enjoy all of those things. BUT I would love to have an extra day in the week during which I would prop up my feet on a chair and read.

* I was able to find time for this only because of enforced inactivity while I was sitting in the bathtub drowning an embedded tick that I couldn’t get out with tweezers, as the Maximum Leader can attest.

Question for the Naked Villainy Bloggers: What was the best fiction book you have read over the last year?

April 26, 2004

The Book Exercise

Greetings, loyal minions. Your Maximum Leader will no do a little book exercise. He got the idea from Winds of Change.NET: The Book Exercise.

Here is the exercise:
1) Grab the nearest book.
2) Open the book to page 23.
3) Find the fifth sentence.
4) Post the text of the sentence in your journal along with these instructions.

"It is said that by secret pleasure she actually forced her, though most unwilling, to have intercourse with him, and when in this way the girl had lost her virginity, arranged for her to marry him, for fear the Emperor might put a stop to her little game."

- from "The Secret History" by Procopius.

What a fun sentence to get! Of course, if you counted the introduction (your Maximum Leader did not to get the above quotation) then the sentence would be this one, which is almost as good:

"She then persuaded him to kill Constantine, a general who as Belisarius's friend had dared to express sympathy for him."

- from the Introduction to "The Secret History" by G.A. Williamson.

Carry on.

April 25, 2004

Open season on the Bush administration

As an aside, the link I posted below and relinked here is an excellent opinion piece by Harold Meyerson about the insider accounts that are currently plaguing the administration. It's worth a read in its entirety, but I want to quote the final paragraph verbatim:

"Indeed, what defines Bush as a leader is that he repeatedly put Tenet's case
[for weapons of mass destruction in Iraq] to the American people as the reason
we had to go to war, though he was personally unconvinced by it. What defines
Cheney is that he was the one guy in the room who thought that Tenet had
connected the dots. Which is to say, the president is only a liar. The vice president
is a lunatic."

The full court attack on this administration's credibility begins now.

The view from the militaristic left

I've been busy, but I just want to weigh in: I'm an admitted liberal and military veteran, and I'm voting for Kerry.

I am opposed to both a new draft and mandatory military service. The all-volunteer force is the cornerstone of our present military configuration. Modifying that tenant has far-reaching applications. For example, the use and application of current and future technologies for individual force enhancement, in my opinion, depends on soldiers whose commitment and focus lies beyond surviving the next two years. It is also extremely difficult to build esprit de corps among drafted soldiers. The gains in manpower do not outweigh the loss of cohesion. No matter how large, I doubt a drafted military could occupy Iraq with even half the effectiveness of our current forces: they simply would not possess the willpower to stay the course.

Along that course, I am in favor of giving the UN more control of the final outcome in Iraq. I agree with many of our Maximum Leader's predictions as of the consequences of UN leadership, but I think the consequences of continued U.S.-occupation are worse. First, secular democracy (Maximum Leader's oft-repeated goal for Iraq) will never be achieved in Iraq, since a majority of the population favors a religious style theocracy modeled on Iran. Second, a U.S.-sponsored state will never achieve legitimacy in the region, particularly when the Defense Department continues to throw it's support behind individuals like Ahmed Chalabi (again look to the example of Iran, where our support for the Shah blinded us to consequences of revolution). Third, the linking of our economic, political and military interests damages our credibility elsewhere in the world, where is might be needed for future conflicts. The Bush administration seems to agree on some level, since they've already asked the UN to oversee the transition. As I've said before, we need to sacrifice our economic and political interests in Iraq and focus on what we do best: killing people. We can continue to fight the war on terrorism without enriching Halliburton. Incidentally, the United Nations IS to be credited with the success of stability in the Balkans (Yugoslavia was never a stable nation, so it's dissolution is not the fault of the UN), which is one more success than the U.S. has had in post-WWII nation-building.

This is the essence of my disagreement with most of the posters on this site. I feel that the Bush administration's goals in Iraq cannot be achieved, and what progress we do make is continually undercut by political cronyism and economic corruption. It was a bad war from day one: fought to achieve hidden objectives and justified by by threats of 'imminent danger' that were intentionally overhyped. We have a responsibility to clean up our mess, and we should keep our troops on the ground and maintain a robust level of economic aid. The Iraq War and it's consequences will be the defining event of our generation, just as Vietnam probably was for most of our parents; if we're thoughtful about what we do from here, we can prevent it from also defining the generation of our children.

Bloggy goodness all across the board.

Greetings, loyal minions. Your Maximum Leader figured he would take a few moments to try and respond to some items that have been written about in this space over the past week.

Concerning Bush and secrecy in government. The Minister of Propaganda made some very important points in this post. But, your Maximum Leader believes that the tendency to insulate the workings of the Executive Branch from the media (and by extension the public) has been going on since the creation of CNN. The Clinton Administration went to court numerous times to protect "privileged" meetings concerning Mrs. Clinton's health care reform initiatives. (To cite one Clinton era example of many.) And a closer examination of the records of the past 10-15 years would, your Maximum Leader believes, show increasing secrecy in the Executive branch of our government. Is this a good thing? No. As my loyal minister points out, exchange and competition of ideas is the very life-blood of a democracy. The public needs to be informed as to what the policies of his nation are; and what they are likely to be in the future. This requires a degree of transparency in how the business of government is conducted. How much transparency is the question.

Your Maximum Leader brought up the creation of CNN for a reason in this context. One reason for the increasing secrecy surrounding policy making is the fact that if there isn't some secrecy, incomplete policy considerations are likely to be reported on by the news networks. CNN, MSNBC, Fox News all have 24 hours a day coverage of news. And that means that every day brings them programming challenges. They are always looking for something to report upon. They would gladly report on what the President (any President) is doing or thinking of doing, if they could find out. Your Maximum Leader firmly believes that any president is entitled to get confidential advice from his people. But he also believes that "fact-finding" (to use a broad term) that leads to policy formulation should be open for examination. (Except in such cases where a clear national security issue can be shown to preclude public examination.)

Overall, your Maximum Leader would like to see more transparency in government. Though he sometimes (okay, much of the time) takes a dim view of the degree of political acumen of many of his fellow countrymen, it is still better for all that the information be out there.

Moving on to two linked issues... The Minister of Agriculture wrote about "Clarity for Kerry" and the Poet Laureate wrote about the possibility of the Draft returning.

The Minister of Agriculture wrote about how Kerry may be playing a UN card to cater to his Democratic base, but he is not going to just pull out of Iraq. The Minister of Agriculture believes that Kerry knows that he has to play to win in Iraq. Your Maximum Leader isn't too sure of this line of reasoning. Your Maximum Leader believes that Kerry is committed to both "winning in Iraq" and increasing the UN role in Iraq. These positions are not mutually exclusive. It all depends on your vision of winning. For Kerry, from what your Maximum Leader can tell, winning will consist of getting a UN mandate in Iraq and internationalizing the military forces there. Once that is accomplished, the problematic issues of Iraq's future government (and even status) is a group decision to be determined by the Security Council of the UN. Unrest in Iraq, which ethnic/religious group gets what, who controls the oil, and all other thorny issues would be determined by UN administrators on the ground with the help of Iraqis; and ultimately those decisions would be ratified by the Security Council.

That my minions is not winning. Your Maximum Leader doesn't believe the UN is institutionally capable of "solving" the problems of Iraq. They have not proven themselves capable in Cyprus, the Balkans, East Timor, Lebanon, or any number of African nations. While internationalizing Iraq might take the heat off of the United States alone, it will not solve the problem. This begs the question of what will solve the problem?

Like the Minister of Agriculture, your Maximum Leader is becoming disillusioned with how the Administration is handling Iraq. As the Minister of Agriculture alludes (and has he said to your Maximum Leader privately), we (the United States) do not seem to be acting with clear intentions in Iraq. And regardless of that fact, we may not have the resources in Iraq to act decisively. Your Maximum Leader believes that a secular, democratic Iraq is an important goal. And one that with time and resources may be attainable. He doesn't believe that the United Nations will be able to mold such a state. (Indeed, your Maximum Leader believes that ultimately the UN, if they are more involved, will be unable to keep Iraq together and will recommend that it become at least two states. A majority Kurdish state and a majority Shia state; both with sizable Sunni minorities. (If not three states all together.) A secular democratic Iraq would be a leap forward in a region that is typified by authoritarian regimes. A secular democratic Iraq may also produce circumstances where extreme Islamofacists may not take root. (Ultimately, extremist Islam is our major security concern.) Only the United States and like-minded nations can produce any such result. The UN cannot because it is only going to be concerned about what is "best for Iraq" not best for the world.

So, where does that leave us? Well it still leaves us with the problem of the insurgency. Your Maximum Leader agrees with the Smallholder that if the Defence Department didn't think there might be an insurgency they were negligent. Your Maximum Leader is surprised (to be honest) that the insurgency is not more widespread, and didn't start earlier. But, it seems to be clearer and clearer that we need more troops on the ground. Where do they come from? Well, there is no easy answer to that.

Your Maximum Leader agrees with Senator McCain that Congress, regardless of what the President thinks, should vote to expand the size (along with improve the pay) of our Army and Marine Corps. Your Maximum Leader doesn't believe there is a need for a draft, nor does he think one is in the offing. This will take time to accomplish, but should be done. In the meanwhile, shifting forces from Europe, Korea, and the Balkans to Iraq seems to be feasible. Your Maximum Leader believes that the current administration is holding out against increased deployments in Iraq because of how it would be perceived politically. This is wrong. Your Maximum Leader doesn't believe the administration is ideologically incapable of sending more troops; they just don't want to "give an issue" to the Democrats. (This same line of thinking was also used by Johnson and Nixon during Vietnam. To make a historical analogy that may not be completely applicable in this circumstance.) This is wrong. If more troops are needed, and pretty much everyone thinks more are, more should be sent.

As for the draft...

Your Maximum Leader agrees with Tacitus insomuch as a draft is politcally nearly impossible, but it would be a clear sign that America was serious about its overseas committments. Your Maximum Leader has pondered this question quite a bit over the past few days. How could we institute a draft where members of all economic classes were equally likely to serve? (This is one of the questions raised by the Poet Laureate.) Simple. Remove many of the exemptions. Like going to college. If college were not an exception, lots more "upper class" kids would have to be drafted. As for fleeing to Canada (or elsewhere), that regrettably will always be an option for those with means. But what shouldn't be an option is pardoning those people who flee (thanks President Carter) or allowing them to possess or manage property (assets) in the United States.

Hell, forget the draft, how about mandatory military service?

One last point... The AirMarshal requested that your Maximum Leader blog about Saudi Arabia. That would take so much more time than he has right now... But to rattle off a few points. The Saudi Royal Family is corrupt. They hold on to power through careful spending of money, cultivation of friends who can help them, deflection of anger against them towards the US and Israel, and oppression of their people. Their hold on power is tenuous. But, the prospects of who could replace them is even more scary. Your Maximum Leader believes that Saudi Arabia is a deeply troubled nation that needs reform at so many levels he wouldn't know where to start.

Fingers tired my loyal minions. Will sign off now.

Carry on.

April 23, 2004

Belief-o-matic results.

Greetings, loyal minions. Your Maximum Leader went and took the Belief-o-matic test again after reading the AirMarshal's results. Here are the results of your Maximum Leader:
1. Orthodox Judaism (100%)
2. Bahá'í Faith (94%)
3. Sikhism (92%)
4. Islam (91%)
5. Reform Judaism (88%)
6. Jainism (74%)
7. Unitarian Universalism (74%)
8. Liberal Quakers (73%)
9. Neo-Pagan (71%)
10. Mahayana Buddhism (66%)

Your Maximum Leader just figured you'd like to know more about him. Especially after you were all entralled with his interview responses...

Carry on.

Belatedly Heeding the Call, Part II

For more draft talk-- and it seems to have gotten serious rather quickly-- visit this link at Tacitus. The post says, rather ominously:

It's coming, and at this point, it either needs to come, or we need to abandon our role as de facto hegemon. In the latter case, much blood and suffering around the globe will ensue. Two things strike me as being fairly obvious on this point: first, that a President George W. Bush will be politically and socially unable to implement a draft; second, that it would be the clearest signal of serious intent we could send to our adversaries in Iraq and elsewhere.

Go read the rest, including the update, which lists all the things that would happen if America decided to curl up into a little ball and shun the world. And as always, take a gander at the intelligent comments that follow. Tacitus is one of the few blogs with consistently decent comment threads because he and his team enforce a rather draconian commenting policy. The discipline is worth the effort: he's attracted a lot of sharp people, both dittoheads and detractors.


Important Correction

Greetings, loyal minions.

I have come to my senses. Smallholder is correct about everything. I will now defer to his judgment in every situation.

I would also like to say (and I don't care if the Foreign Minister thinks this is wrong):

I feel pretty. Oh! So pretty.

Carry on.

Posted by the Maximum Leader

What occurs above is a parody (a bad one at that), by the Minister of Agriculture. Your Maximum Leader is certain that most of his loyal minions would pick up on the fact that the Smallholder, try as he might, hasn't mastered the talent of 3rd person narrative. Also, we know that your Maximum Leader would never use the word "pretty" to describe himself. That feminine term would only be used by a man who's only domestic contact this week has been his cows... And they think the Minister of Agriculture is "pretty" in a "human" sort of way.

Max. Ldr.

JLH Update

Greetings, loyal minions. Your Maximum Leader feels it is time for a Jennifer Love Hewitt update. Here it is: Yahoo! News - Hewitt, Chaplin Go 'Carol'-Ing

Carry on.

Quick note... This is a group blog.

Greetings, loyal minions. Your Maximum Leader has been rather preoccupied with other items this week, and has been unable to find good blog time. But, in his mind are a series of posts on Saudi Arabia, secrecy in government, and Kerry's foreign policy. Alas, this is not the time for those posts.

This is the time for a quick note of explaination...

The esteemed father of your Maximum Leader telephoned last night. In the course of our chat, the esteemed father of your Maximum Leader asked "So what's this I hear about you voting for Kerry in the fall?" Your Maximum Leader asked his esteemed father what he was talking about. It seems that the saintly mother of your Maximum Leader may have read the Minister of Agriculture's post on "Clarity for Kerry" (scroll down) and mistakenly believed that your Maximum Leader wrote it.

Just a little review for those of you who are new here...

Look at the small print of the tag line at the end of each post. That will tell you who wrote it. To give you a quick review of the bloggers here:

1) First and foremost, your Maximum Leader. The "Mike" in the "Mike World Order." The tagline will read "Posted by the Maximum Leader." Your Maximum Leader also begins all his posts with the words "Greetings, loyal minions." And ends his posts with the words "Carry on."

2) The Big Hominid. He is the Poet Laureate of the Mike World Order. He has his own blog (found here). And his tagline will read "Posted by Kevin." Your Maximum Leader has known the Big Hominid since 3rd grade. If he were a woman, it is likely that your Maximum Leader would have tried to marry him. (And of course, if it weren't for Mrs. Villain, he could now in Vermont, Massachusetts, and San Francisco.)

3) The AirMarshal. He is the chief scientist (make that a Rocket Scientist) of the MWO. His tagline will read "Posted by AirMarshal." Your Maximum Leader has known the AirMarshal since middle school. He is Godfather to Villainette #2. (FYI, the Big Hominid is Godfather to Villainette #1.)

4) The Smallholder Minister of Agriculture. The agrarian philosopher of the MWO. His tagline reads "Posted by Smallholder." While he shouldn't vote for Kerry (for reasons your Maximum Leader will lay out later), he is generally capable of sound judgments. Your Maximum Leader met the Smallholder in college, and for some mad reason, we haven't stopped talking yet.

5) The Foreign Minister. He is the gun-toting, libertarian, living abroad in Germany, hunk of burning love of the MWO. While he DOESN'T POST NEARLY OFTEN ENOUGH (leaving it up to your Maximum Leader to tow the party line) he is a valued friend and minister. His tagline reads "Posted by Greg."

6) The Minister of Propaganda. The man with the cinematic eye. The liberal heart of the MWO. A man who your Maximum Leader likes to spend time for any occasion. His taglines read "Posted by the Director."

So readers be warned.... There are SIX of us here. Be careful...

Carry on.

April 22, 2004

Clarity for Kerry

My wife and the Minister of Propaganda almost did me in last month.

My crime?

Thinking about voting for Bush.

Please don’t think that I, in any way, support Bush’s domestic policies. I disagree with his administration almost entirely across the board.

But I wasn’t that inspired by Kerry’s vague platitudes. Additionally, I can’t foresee a circumstance in which the Democrats could regain control of either house of Congress, so Kerry wouldn’t be able to significantly challenge the prevailing domestic agenda.

The President has much more discretion in foreign affairs. And I thought Kerry would be a disaster.

I’d rather pluck out my own eyes with a shrimp fork than give France a veto over American foreign policy. I believe the U.N. can occasionally be a useful tool, but have no illusions about its democratic legitimacy. And Kerry’s evasiveness about his plan for Iraq, together with his wink-wink-nudge-nudge asides to the Howie Dean pacifist crowd alarmed me.

So I was going to reluctantly pull the level for George.

But then two experiences gave me a moment of clarity.

I read a blogger entry that was attacking Kerry for campaigning against unilateralism. I don’t remember which blog it was so can provide no link. But the gist of it was that Kerry was smart enough to know that winning was the only option and that he was just being disingenuous when he played to the “pro-U.N.” and pacifist crowds.

While I wish our politicians were more honest about their positions, this attack on Kerry’s character made me realize that Kerry’s election would not be a foreign affairs disaster.

The other lightning bolt came from watching CNN. I caught part of a Rumsfeld news conference. The SecDef was explaining to a reporter that “no one could have predicted the insurgency…”


What the Fuck!?

Many, many people predicted the insurgency.

My blogger colleagues will remember that I supported the morality of the war to save the Kurds AND believed that we had to eliminate the long-term threat the Hussein posed to our national interest. My one reservation was the fear that the Bush team would fight the war on the cheap and fail to win the peace. I should have placed more weight on that reservation, because it has come to pass. Our failure to go in with enough force or to plan for the occupation has cost us dearly. And the Bush team can’t see, or won’t see why this is a problem.

Months ago, Rumsfeld himself had gotten into a public pissing match with the Chief of Staff over troop numbers. The Chief of Staff has said that more men were needed to prevent the growth of an insurgency. Rumsfeld overruled him, discounting the dangers ahead. And this same son of a bitch now has the temerity to claim that “no one could have predicted the insurgency!?”

I suddenly realized:

Bush, Cheney and Rumsfeld are so driven by ideology that they are unable to modify policy to match reality. While this is obnoxious on the domestic side of the slate (the ideological partisanship of the “Mayberry Machiavellis” has been amply demonstrated by former players in the administration), it is dangerous and immoral on the international front. If a group of people who are psychologically incapable of questioning their tactics lead us into an unwinnable war (and we can’t win this war on the cheap – you need more troops to fight a guerilla insurgency than you do a traditional enemy – you have to guard huge numbers of soft targets) and can’t change their tactics, they need to be removed.

I have no problem with using lethal force to advance our national interest and, while saddened by their sacrifice, understand that the blood of our boys may need to be spilt. But I can only accept these things IF a positive outcome is achievable. Without the possibility of a positive outcome, killing foreigners and sacrificing Americans is IMMORAL.

Bush and his boys don’t have the intellectual flexibility to find a positive outcome. They MUST be replaced.
Once more unto the breach, dear Kevin, once more, or fill the the wall up with our Blogger dead.

I have already posted a couple of times on Analphilosopher's penchant for sloppy political argument. I'm not going to do much writing here - I'll just post two Analphilosopher posts next to each other for comparison:

From Analphilsopher on 4-14, bottom of the Krugman post:

…By writing such shrill, partisan columns, Krugman undermines whatever credibility he would otherwise have. He’s a party hack, not a disinterested seeker after truth (what we philosophers call a veracious inquirer). I wonder what Krugman’s fellow economists think of him. I know that if any philosopher were as partisan as Krugman is, he or she would be roundly condemned. We philosophers take pride in our honesty and fairness. Yes, we have evaluative and interpretive disagreements, often profound, but none of us would ever distort or hide facts that go against our beliefs, and we certainly don’t treat others with the contempt that Krugman displays in every column. He’s a disgrace to academia. He gives economics an even worse name than it had, which is hard to do.

From 4/12:

Liberals have no shame. They're unfulfilled totalitarians. Their only goal, despite their declared concern for the disadvantaged, is power. Think about it. If liberals truly cared about the disadvantaged, as they say they do, they'd dispose of their wealth. There are enough wealthy liberals in this country to feed, clothe, shelter, and medicate every poor person. Don't hold your breath waiting for this to happen. The Kennedys are still wealthy, aren't they? John Kerry is more than happy to take advantage of the Heinz fortune. Liberals insist on forcing others to pay for their hare-brained social-engineering schemes. This suggests that they're driven by envy and spite, not benevolence.

I have already posted on the 4/12 rant against liberals. Comparing the two columns, I am sure that Professor Burgess-Jackson wrote column on the twelfth as an attempt at humor. In light of his opinions expressed in the post of the fourteenth, he couldn’t possible have made the argument of the twelfth with a straight face.

April 21, 2004

Belatedly Heeding the Call

The Maximum Leader asks his ministers to post, so post we shall, or die in the attempt.

Of note today is the latest Drudge link to an article about draft talk. This seems to be coupled with the running argument about troop strength in Iraq, and may or may not indicate a little nervousness about how badly stretched we are, currently.

I have a feeling this issue won't be taken seriously once the discussion widens into a larger public debate, but some lines from the article do give pause:

"There's not an American ... that doesn't understand what we are engaged in today and what the prospects are for the future," Senator Chuck Hagel told a Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing on post-occupation Iraq.

"Why shouldn't we ask all of our citizens to bear some responsibility and pay some price?" Hagel said, arguing that restoring compulsory military service would force "our citizens to understand the intensity and depth of challenges we face."

The Nebraska Republican added that a draft, which was ended in the early 1970s, would spread the burden of military service in Iraq more equitably among various social strata.

"Those who are serving today and dying today are the middle class and lower middle class," he observed.

Two items:

1. The "all our citizens" question. Would a draft actually catch "all our citizens"? I haven't dipped into the history books on this (I'll leave that to the experts on this blog), but haven't the richer folks generally had an advantage when it comes to fancy methods of draft-avoidance? And if we put aside class issues and grant for argument's sake that a draft would be absolutely fair (i.e., catching people proportionately from all social strata), is the American populace actually ready to bear this burden now?

2. On a related note: doesn't the last line of the above quote sound more like the ulterior motive for a draft would be, in fact, to snag more upper-class folks and make them serve?

Item (1) above amuses me because, even if the draft-reinstitution idea isn't taken seriously, it's a "put your money where your mouth is" issue. It's a good metric for determining who, in fact, would be a chickenhawk, squawking pro-war rhetoric but finding excuses not to make the ultimate commitment. I suspect the loudest murmurings would come from the upper class.

Item (2), however, seems to give away the game: this sure as hell sounds like a hunt for the upper class. It sounds like an honor-and-glory version of the "redistribution of wealth" idea: redistribute the burden of military service. Sure, this might actually be fair, but it's not consistent to talk about a draft-- something whose randomness/fairness should make it impossible to target a particular social stratum-- while implicitly targeting the upper class. (Or am I misreading this?)

The moral question for us, Joe and Jane American, is whether we're willing to be consistent with our rhetoric. If able to serve, would you serve? Would you accept being drafted even if you don't believe in the war? If you're a war supporter of age, would you go willingly to Iraq or bolt to Canada?

A modern question: would today's draft include women? Ha! There's a debate in itself! I don't see why it shouldn't, personally.

I look forward to seeing a public debate on the draft. I'm curious to see how many people suddenly decide that we don't really need more troops in Iraq. I'm curious to see what we discover about just how stretched our forces are; currently, I don't have a clear read on this because the numbers are being spun by both sides, red and blue. I'm curious to know what people who praise the voluntary nature of our fighting forces will say about a draft.

On a personal note: my Dad's been worried for years that the draft would be reinstituted. He worries because my younger brothers could, in theory, get drafted. I don't know whether Dad's heard about this issue yet, but I doubt he'd be cheered by the news that we're beginning to discuss conscription again.


April 20, 2004

A smattering of links for curious minds

How the Hollywood media has failed to respect the war in Iraq, the hypocisies of the Bush administration (make that a double!), why Texas politicians are evil, a new book about why gay is good, and a candidate for President with whom we can all sleep soundly.

This is your Minister of Propaganda, broadcasting from the left coast.

April 19, 2004

Blogger Yellow Pages

Greetings, loyal minions. Your Maximum Leader was perusing the Politburo Diktat today and found this nifty listing of blogs. The Commissar has, in the past, put out some other neat blog maps. With this shameless trackback, your Maximum Leader hopes to get Nakedvillainy listed as a group blog. Ministers! Get to writing!

Carry on.

April 16, 2004

Hollywood Outsourcing.

Greetings, loyal minions. Your Maximum Leader is ruminating over some comments inspired by his Minister of Propaganda's last post. Your Maximum Leader agrees with some of the M of P's major points as they speak to our elected officials at large. Not only our current administration.

Speaking of the Minister of Propaganda, your Maximum Leader saw this article over on the Washington Post website and thought of him.

Carry on.

Why everyone should be concerned about Bush's leadership

Whether or not you are for the war or against the war, for or against Bush, here is an excellent analysis of Bush's strategic failure in conducting the war in Iraq. To quote from the middle, "[the Bush administration] has adopted a two-tier policy: a complex and nearly hidden strategic plan and a superficial public presentation."

Personally, I think this administration's efforts to insulate their internal processes -- not just with Iraq but in practically every aspect of government policy -- demonstrates a harmful and dangerous style of leadership that is contrary to the best democratic traditions of this country. Even if you agree with his policies on this issue (the analysis I posted above supports the war in Iraq), aren't any of you concerned about what this administration will privately decide next? Or worse yet, what's ALREADY been decided without even a semblance of open, public debate?

The strength of democracy, in the liberal tradition anyway, is the public competition of ideas. This is the basic principle behind the First Amendment. This administration, and (dare I speak as a partisan for a moment) increasingly the Republican party itself, has adopted an overall political strategy where public scrutiny of internal strategies (Cheney's energy council meetings, the Medicare boondoggle, Ashcroft's wars on just about everything) is intentionally blurred by a two-prong strategy: first, the delivering of misleading or outright dishonest public statements (Bush, etc al) and second, vicious attacks on your opponents. Both efforts serve only to distract from any debate of substance. Whatever your political stripes, we should all be concerned about an administration which, in a GENERAL election, strategically moves to the FAR RIGHT on social issues. It's a devisive strategy that chokes real debate on any issue, and it's contrary to the founding principles of this nation.

In any practical analysis, the disconnect between private strategy and public presentation is unstable and should eventually tear this administration apart. My fear is that Bush (and Cheney and Rumsfield and Ashcroft) will do irreparable damage to our country before it does. Anybody-but-Bush this November.

The Few, the proud...

Greetings, loyal minions. Your Maximum Leader, as a sometimes kilt-wearer himself, thought he would pass along this item off the AP news wire. Kilt-Wearing Marine Plays Bagpipes in Iraq. And he's not Scottish...

Carry on.

Villainous Commerce

Greetings, loyal minons. Your Maximum Leader wanted to point out that there is a sale going on at Your Maximum Leader's Villainous Commerce Store. Ladies! Get your Nakedvillainy t-shirts for the perfectly reasonable price of $13 (US - no Loonies!).

Of course ladies, if you are in the mood you could pick up a Nakedvillainy Thong.

Guys. You can't help but look studly, super-intelligent, and hung like a horse while wearing a Naked Villainy t-shirt. Chicks dig the nifty image of your Maximum Leader on your Schwarzenegger-esque pectorals. (Did your Maximum Leader mention that wearing his t-shirt will actually cause your pectorals to bulge?)

Loyal minions, indulge yourselves...

Commerce break is now concluded.

Carry on.

April 15, 2004

Michael Smerconish on NRO

Greetings, loyal minions. Your Maximum Leader was over at National Review Online today and stumbled upon this article: Michael Smerconish on John Lehman & Airlines. Your Maximum Leader does wonders why this was not reported on in more detail by other news outlets? Here is an unspoken question, Did the 9/11 terrorists know about this policy? Your Maximum Leader doubts if we will ever be able to discover the answer to that.

Your Maximum Leader understands why racial profiling is contraversial. And to an extent your Maximum Leader acknowledges that profiling can be abused by certain officials. But, wouldn't it make sense to follow a profile if it reasonably fits?

This whole question causes us to examine a difficult issue in our society. At what point to we sacrafice privacy for "security." It also causes us to examine items such as race, sex, and religious affiliation which are hot button items. As a matter of course, we as Americans want to be tolerant of other people. People of all religions, sexes, and races deserve basic civil respect. So profiling according to these characteristics alone strikes many Americans as intolerant and even bigoted.

But at what point to we come to realize that in some cases (and so far not a demonstrable majority of cases) these characteristics may in fact be useful tools for raising suspicions? As has been said many times before, the 9/11 terrorists were all youngish, male, arab, muslims. From what we can gather, many of those who seek to do great harm to our nation fit that basic profile. Thus, those characteristics, added with others (like one-way tickets paid in cash on short notice), seem to be part of the basis of a sensible profile to use as a guide to segregate (used the word deliberately) some people from others in sensative areas for screening by legitimate authorities.

Ultimately, it seems to be a reasonable trade-off. Some people are, genuinely, disadvantaged by application of a profiling policy. But the application of the policy provides some reasonable measure of security to many others. Profiling, at least in airports and train stations (marine terminals?), is a sensible policy.

Carry on.


Greetings, loyal minions. Your Maximum Leader was looking over his site statistics. And found this: Yahoo! Search Results for anticpatory guidelines for pregnancy

Does it seem as though your Maximum Leader has been obsessing over his site statistics of late? He thinks it is nothing more than just liking to look at pretty colour graphs and such... (That is how the statistics are displayed on Superb.net.) He'll be quiet about it now...

Carry on.

April 14, 2004

How Well Should One Know Their Steak?

I have been called to task for “dissociation” on the Analphilosopher site by a reader:

Donovan and Smallholder's posts read so much like Psychology 101 illustrations of Denial (animals don't suffer, Donovan), Justification (it's acceptable to eat meat because other animals do it, Donovan, or because the "meat" was raised "humanely," Smallholder) and Dissociation (meat comes from "humanely raised meat" not from individual animals, Smallholder), that they are almost comedic. Thank you, I enjoyed reading them.


I will send what follows to the Analphilosopher in his mailbag. He may or may not use it, as is his prerogative; I do not know his policy on reader-to-reader discussions.

Dear Joanna,

I’m always happy to bring happiness, humor, and joy to others. You should see me dance. Unfortunately, your amusement at my failure to recognize that meat comes from “individuals” arises only because she does not do her part to keep the Maximum Leader happy with his site meter statistics. If she would only click on the link to the Nakedvillainy blog, she would discover that I do not deny the individuality of the animals I eat. In fact, my blogosphere handle, “Smallholder” is taken from the English term that not only denotes someone who farms a small patch of land, but also lives in close harmony with his animals. I know each individual animal intimately, spending one or two hours in direct, hands-on contact with my boys every day.

If you were to drive up the hill at Sweet Seasons Farm at 5:00 AM on any day of the week, you would find the barn light on and yours truly inside, feeding the boys with hand-mixed milk replacer. As they drink, I rub their sides, talk to them, scratch their ears, and lift their tails to make sure they don’t have runny manure. They particularly like chin rubs. As I clean out the night’s manure, the only real difficulty I have is the lads throwing me off balance as they seek even more attention. The same process gets repeated each evening as well. In fact, one of the little scamps was too affectionate last night – I had forgotten the egg basket and carefully placed several eggs in my front pants pocket. One of my twins didn’t think he had gotten enough love and butted my hip – breaking four of the eggs.

In fact, the close association with the individuals can get even more intense. Last year, a snowstorm coupled with freakish wind swirling through the hills pushed snow through the barn’s second story, around the hayloft, and into the pen. I went out at eleven in the evening to check to see if my boys were snuggly warm in the midst of the blizzard and found them standing forlornly with a quarter inch of snow on their backs. Intellectually I understand that cattle are built to survive this sort of thing – I have seen my neighbor’s cattle with an inch of encrusted ice all over their hides – but I didn’t want my lads to be cold. I Jerry-rigged (look at me ethnically slandering myself) a tarp over the calf pen, rubbed them all over with a blanket, changed the straw bedding, and then proceeded to sleep in the barn to add my body heat to their pen. It was cold, nasty work. But I kind of enjoyed waking up at three in the morning with calves snuggled up to me on each side, their heads tucked between my shoulders and face.

This year I had an outbreak of pneumonia. I had one calf that I tube-fed three times a day for a week, cradling it in my arms and massaging its ribs to aid digestion.

I could provide many, many, more examples.

I’m sure Joann will object that it can’t be humane because the guys must be terrified at the end of their lives. I’m sure the slaughtering process is hard on 99.9% of the steers destined for hamburger, but the kindness I have shown the boys and the mutual affection we have also help their ends come cleanly. They follow me right up to the truck and I drive over to a Mennonite Farmer who slaughters on the side. He takes the animals in the order that they arrive, so I shoot to get to his place at 4:00 AM so I am first in line. They calmly walk down the ramp and into the facility. He was shocked that they would just follow me like little lambs – normally unloading and moving is accompanied by a fair amount of yelling and shoving. He hits them with a 22 to the brain and they are down – no muss, no fuss.

Ah, many animal rights advocates might contend, there is still cruelty because they die in the end. While I am in agreement with animal rights activists in their critiques of unnecessary (mental and physical) cruelty, they typically lose me when they make that judgment. If the goal of animal rights activists is to eliminate as much animal suffering as possible, attacking humane farming conducive to their end. My animals lead TREMENDOUSLY better lives on my farm then they would in nature.

The PETA crowd seems to misunderstand that “Mother Nature” is, as Gene Logsdon puts it, often “Old Bitch Nature.” Animals aren’t living out in a state of Disney Technicolor utopia. Animals in the wild are perpetually fearful, subject to predation, parasite-ridden, frequently sick, and constantly hungry. Most die young and their deaths are ugly, traumatic affairs.

Professor Burgess-Jackson has stated that the art of persuasion is based on making people realizes that their basic beliefs are in conflict. I have a challenge for his readers.

If my beliefs are:
A) Suffering should be minimized.
B) Animals in my care, provided with meals, shelter, health care, and protection from predation, suffer much less than they would in the state of nature.

Show me where these beliefs are in conflict. Please do so without using the “don’t use others as an end” arguments. I’d buy that in person-to-person relationships, but don’t accord full moral (human) weight to animals.


April 13, 2004

Iran & al-Sadr... Perfect together

Greetings, loyal minons. Your Maximum Leader has been thinking about a more substantive Iraq post of late. But he has been trying to figure out what may be some of the other causes behind the current uprising. Here is one from the New York Post. Thanks to Kate and The Glittering Eye for starting your Maximum Leader down this path. Will investigate more.

Carry on.

Pork Tastes Good, But...

I see the Maximum Leader is still proselytizing about the wonders of pigdom.

I too appreciate the animal known to many American homesteaders as the “Mortgage-lifter” because of its economic utility, but I had to decline Mike’s request to raise a pig to go along with the beef I am raising for the Villainous household.

I will one day add at least a couple of pigs to the farm, but not until the Wee Smallholder is a bit older. I have a cousin whose ear is a bit jagged because he stepped to close to the boar pen when he was a toddler. Old Horace decided that the little lad would make a good snack, grabbed him by the ear and pulled him into the pen. If my uncle had not been nearby, he would have lost a kid.

So, until my dear little one is big enough to a) understand to stay away from the piggies and b) is too big to constitute a tasty porcine morsel, we will not have any pigs.

This brings to mind one of my favorite answers to vegetarians. When Gene Logsdon was asked how he could eat pigs that he had raised by hand, he responded: “If I had a heart attack in the pen, the pigs would eat me. That’s fair.”

Weird Congruency

Big Hominid has posted on the same two Analphilosopher posts that I discussed a little while ago. He does a better job then me. :(

Of course, he is an academic while I am only a poor son of the soil.

You should also check out his 20 questions with the Maximum Leader. Unbeknownst to Mike, however, question 17 is moot. I already have a spot reserved for him in the compost pile.

UPDATE FROM YOUR MAXIMUM LEADER: No need to be all clandestine about putting my corpse in the compost pile. It is a more utilitarian end to my body than embalming and burial. And anyway, why not have my body end up in a field (or as pig food) when your Maximum Leader is gone. It is better than being interred in a glorious tomb along a major thoroughfare and having thousands of loyal minions coming by to pay their respects to my perfectly preserved body; only to have the MWO crumble, the visitors stop, the tomb close, and have western businessmen offer to buy the corpse as a sideshow attraction in a new amusement park... - Max. Ldr.

Physician, Heal Thyself!

Lest you think I’ve gone soft on the Analphilosopher:

My last post showed KBJ at his best: thought-provoking.

This one returns to my earlier critique of the blog as hack propaganda.

From yesterday:

Liberal Dishonesty

Have you noticed the pattern? Liberals lack argumentative skills, so they resort to various forms of abuse and dishonesty to influence voters. They "play the race card" whenever an African-American, such as Michael Jackson, is held responsible for his or her actions. This isn't argument. It's avoidance of argument. They attribute opposition to affirmative-action programs to racism. This silences opponents. They attribute opposition to homosexual "marriage" to religious fundamentalism or homophobia. Read Andrew Sullivan's blog if you think I'm making this up. They attribute opposition to abortion to religious fundamentalism or sexism. Opponents of abortion are either gripped by religious fervor or hell-bent on keeping women barefoot and pregnant. They attribute support for reduced taxes (or opposition to increased taxes) to greed or to favoritism for the affluent. They seem to think that money grows on trees.

See the pattern? Don't engage your adversaries on rational grounds. Dismiss them as irrational or malevolent. Impugn their motives. Challenge their integrity. Call their intelligence and good will into question. Opposition to the liberal program can't possibly be rational; it must be a manifestation of backwardness, superstition, ignorance, indifference, or self-interest. Conservatives are rednecks, hicks, hayseeds, philistines, and rubes. They're obstructionists. They have an undeveloped sense of justice. They're indifferent to suffering.

Please keep in mind that I was a liberal for a long time. I know the liberal mentality and tactics. Liberals have no shame. They're unfulfilled totalitarians. Their only goal, despite their declared concern for the disadvantaged, is power. Think about it. If liberals truly cared about the disadvantaged, as they say they do, they'd dispose of their wealth. There are enough wealthy liberals in this country to feed, clothe, shelter, and medicate every poor person. Don't hold your breath waiting for this to happen. The Kennedys are still wealthy, aren't they? John Kerry is more than happy to take advantage of the Heinz fortune. Liberals insist on forcing others to pay for their hare-brained social-engineering schemes. This suggests that they're driven by envy and spite, not benevolence.

Read that again. I’ll wait.

Let’s see. Liberals are incapable of reasoned argument because they unsupportedly question the motivations of conservatives and call names. They all want power. They are shameless, totalitarian, wealthy, harebrained, envious, spiteful and malevolent.

Does Burgess-Jackson even see the humor in this post? Is he being intentionally ironic?

You might recall an earlier critique I made of KBJ, questioning whether his political “analysis” was in fact knee-jerk, hackneyed, elephant-echo-chamber propaganda. KBJ blogged in response that he was only analyzing the issues. I challenged him to provide ONE example in which the application of “reason” did not result in a whole-hearted embrace of the position taken by the Bush administration. KBJ did not respond, which I took to be an implied admission that he was indeed partisan rather than analytical. The post quoted above is an explicit admission of this fact, n’est ce pas?

Ethical Carnivorism?

Is it possible to eat meat in good conscience?

Good stuff from the Analphilosopher on meat-eating today. While I do not hold animals to have rights directly analogous to human rights, I believe that the suffering experienced by animals in factory farm conditions is abominable. Even if most people are not amenable to rational persuasion, the average American would be horrified if confronted by a typical day in the life of a factory pig. It seems that consumers willingly turn a blind eye towards how their meat is produced.

I’ll give you one example.

As many readers of this blog know, I am a small-scale farmer. I have an orchard and a vineyard, both of which are very attractive to deer. After spending over a thousand dollars in passive exclusion methods (Ask the Maximum Leader and his long-suffering wife how much fun it was to construct a slant fence), I had to be more pro-active in my defense of my family’s livelihood. When a deer figures out how to get into the orchard through the truck gate, I have no real option but to shoot the darn thing. I don’t enjoy it, but it needs to be done.

Having sacrificed the deer, I don’t want the meat to go to waste. I have filled the freezers of family members, friends, and a local food bank. However, the guy who cleans the deer for the local food bank is tired of dealing with the animals. If there is a deer in the garden prior to school, I don’t have time to deal with processing the carcass. So I sent an e-mail to my colleagues at work:

I have a kill permit to protect my vineyard and orchard from deer damage. I have been donating the deer to the local food bank, but the guy who cleans them is feeling a bit overworked, so I switched to another hunters for the hungry drop off, but they don't open until 7, so it makes it very tight for me to get to work.

If anyone here knows how to butcher a deer and wants free venison, I can bring you a cleaned and gutted carcass. I'll call you in the evening when I get one so you can prepare and bring it up in the early A.M.

If interested, drop me an e-mail with your phone number.


One of the women I worked with became very angry at me. She thought the e-mail posted above was really disgusting and berated me, out in the halls in front of passing students, for “grossing her out.” She was genuinely, shakingly, angry.
Now, I tend to react to this sort of thing by becoming calm and trying to ascertain what the real issue. So I quietly apologized, explaining that I had not meant to insult her dietary beliefs, but that I was just trying to avoid having the meat go to waste. Her response? “I’m not a vegetarian. I love meat. I just like to pretend that it comes from the store in little plastic packages.”

She was so appalled at the humane killing of an animal that has lived its life in nature that she was willing to make an ass of herself in front of God and all his disciples, but she was cheerfully willing to consume feedlot beef? Her real issue is that I had pulled aside the curtain on her carefully constructed Oz of self-delusion.

Read the Analphilosopher’s post. My critique of his position is that the suffering issue isn’t either-or. Meat can be raised humanely – I do it. But most Americans don’t even think about that. I would guess almost 100% of meat in grocery stores is of factory farm origin.

UPDATE: After typing this, I saw that one of KBJ’s readers had sent in an asinine comment:

Why cant i deny that pain and suffering is bad for animals? For me its as simple as the food chain and im at the top of it. I love meat and have no quibbles about doing whatever is required to put it on my families dinner table. The super market just makes it easy. Got to love the division of labor!

Sorry i just dont put animals on the same playing field as humans.


Here is the reply I sent to KBJ:

Dear Donovan,

As a fellow omnivore, I also believe in eating meat. However, I am dismayed that you so blithely dismiss animal suffering. While the position that animals are not morally equivalent to humans is defendable, we still ought not to cause unnecessary pain and suffering when it is avoidable. If you are unwilling to minimize suffering for the sake of animals, do so for your own sake. The way we treat “lessors” – however one might define that term, reflects on us and changes us.

The best parallel that I can think of is the historical opposition that many virulent racists offered to the institution of slavery. They opposed chattel bondage not because they felt any sympathy for Africans but because the racists were alarmed in the way that the institution coarsened slaveholders.

I believe (The good professor will have to confirm this for me; it has been awhile since freshman philosophy) that Aquinas extended this rationale to animals. If I may paraphrase badly: even though they do not have moral weight (souls) we ought to treat them well so as not to develop the habit of cruelty that might then be extended to out fellow man.

You don’t have to become a vegetarian to eschew being a cog in the horror machine. Buy humanely raised meat and enjoy it with a clean conscience.


I'm ready for my close-up Mr. DeMille...

Greetings, loyal minions. Your Maximum Leader instructs you to read 20 Questions with the Maximum Leader over on the Poet Laureate's site. Your Maximum Leader took the time to answer... You take the time to read.

Carry on.

Pigs... God's most perfect animal?

Greetings, loyal minions. Your Maximum Leader believes firmly that the dog is the greatest animal for companionship, hunting, and so many other things. But in terms of pure utility, it is hard to beat a pig. (You can use just about every part of pig.) With this new research: Pig Manure Can Become Crude Oil that becomes more true.

Carry on.

April 12, 2004

Postrel on Link Museum

Greetings, loyal minions. Your Maximum Leader has a little confession to make. He is a train nut. He loves trains. He loves pictures of trains. He can spend hours and hours building railroads with the help of his trusty "Railroad Tycoon" game. So, it disturbs him that the development of an O. Winston Link museum passed beneath his radar. And he had to read about it on Virginia Postrel's blog to find out about it.

Of all the railroads in the country, your Maximum Leader has always loved the old Norfolk & Western. (The Norfolk & Western is now a component of the much larger Norfolk Southern Corporation.) It always made money. It built its own locomotives. And it ran on coal until the mid-1960s. And in the late 50's the N&W let a commercial photographer named O. Winston Link travel the road and capture the passing age of steam. Your Maximum Leader has two books of Winston Link's photos of the N&W. He also as a beautiful framed photo by Link in his office. Now, He will have to travel to Roanoke, VA to visit the museum.

Carry on.

Smallholder Surfaces

I have been remiss in posting lately - it was spring break and I do not have a reliable internet connection at home. Perhaps the Maximum Leader could put up a paypal button so people could donate towards a new farmstead Pentium machine...

I am mentally and emotionally refreshed from nine twelve-hour days of hard, physical focus on the farm and am ready to drive hard in the classroom until the SOLs are over. My father and I put in a trellis system for the grapevines, rewired the orchard protection fence, and started on the pasture divisions necessary for rotational grazing. I am going to go from three paddocks to eighteen.

The only other big news from the week is that my daughter has broken her first bone. She was dancing with her grandmother, spinning spastically, arms pumping, and giggling maniacally. She got dizzy, fell over, and caught her toe on the carpet, bending back the big toe. We took her to the Kluge pediatric rehabilitation center and had a nice pediatric orthopedist (what a specialty!) fix her up with a tiny little cast. It doesn't seem to slow her down much - she is still motoring around like the precious little tyke she is.

Note to the other ministers: there will be no speculation about which side of the family was the source of the spastic dance gene.

I have several blog entries percolating, so look for the following topics over the next couple of weeks:

The MOP was Right and I was Wrong: Invading Iraq Was a Mistake.

How I Risked My Marriage by Flirting With Voting For Bush.

The Benefits of Rotational Grazing.

A Grass-Fed Beef Update.

Reconsidering Fishing as a Recreational Sport.

Guinea Hens as an Organic Tick Control Measure.

An Essay Attempting to Explain the Cosmic Injustice of the Minister of Propaganda Hooking Up With The Captain of the Cheerleading Squad.

Have an idea for a Smallholder Post? E-mail me at Smallholder@Nakedvillainy.com. There is a button to contact me on the linkbar. So far only the Minister of Propaganda has written. << And, my friend, the answer is still no - that would be illegal in Virginia, and, besides, where would we get all that pudding?>>

UPDATE FROM THE MAXIMUM LEADER: Gone squishy on Iraq have we my friend? Joining the ranks of the cutters and runners? Spent your spring break boozing it up with Teddy Kennedy and gone all Patty Hearst on your Maximum Leader? Your Maximum Leader will say that he is curious about how you risked your marriage... But that curiosity will be sated in time... And as a final note, your Maximum Leader, for one, has no doubts about the spastic dancing gene. - Max. Ldr.

Enjoy Every Sandwich

Greetings, loyal minions. Your Maximum Leader was following the links on Kilgore Trout's site and decided to read some of Skippy's stuff at Enjoy Every Sandwich.

Go there and scroll on down and read "What's so funny 'bout peace, love and masturbation?" (Couldn't figure out a permalink.) Your Maximum Leader laughed and laughed and laughed as he read it. In fact, your Maximum Leader nearly spewed hot tea through his nose and all over his keyboard when he read the following line: "That Clinton cum is worse than crack." That might be just enough to have to add him to the blogroll.

And as an aside: In the past few days with all the mentions of Jennifer Love Hewitt, nude, naked, photos, nudity, sodomy, goony masturbation, plain ole masturbation, and now cum; your Maximum Leader can only imagine how his site traffic will increase...

Another aside: Your Maximum Leader reviewed his site statistics again. This site is averaging about 30 unique visitors a day. But! (And it is a big but!) If one excludes Saturday and Sunday from the mix, the average jumps up to 55 unique visitors a day. Wednesday appears to be the big reader day. Since the week after we moved off blogspot, Wednesdays have averaged up to 75 unique visitors per day! To all the readers of this space, your Maximum Leader loves you and urges you to continue in your minonly ways.

Carry on.

Alternate History.

Greetings, loyal minions. Your Maximum Leader is sure that many of you already were aware of this blog by Gregg Easterbrook. Your Maximum Leader didn't read it until today, and later found that the great Glenn Reynolds had already linked to it.

Easterbrook writes an interesting peice. Your Maximum Leader was giving lots of thought to the very question of "what if we had known enough about the 9/11 attacks to stop them?" over the weekend. Your Maximum Leader, contra Bob Kerrey and Richard Ben-Veniste, doesn't believe that there were clear actionable indications of the 9/11 attacks available to decision-makers before the attacks occured. A rather plausible case can be made that had intelligence gathering/analysis been under a different organizational structure, we may have known more. But even that is doubtful.

Carry on.


Greetings, loyal minions. Your Maximum Leader would like to point out that sometimes an idiot can get lucky.

Carry on.

April 11, 2004

Exploring the abandoned wastes of political philosophy

I know he's not fashionable anymore, but I still love Plato.

Anniversary missed...

Greetings, loyal minions. Your Maximum Leader is not sure how he could have missed a very important birthday this past week. Your Maximum Leader’s favourite political philosopher was born on April 5th, 1588. Your Maximum Leader had planned to blog a little about Thomas Hobbes the past Monday, but fate conspired against it. So, let us examine Hobbes a little bit right now.

Thomas Hobbes was born (as mentioned a moment ago), in April 1588. His premature birth to a Vicar’s wife in Westport (near Malmesbury), Gloucestershire, during the reign of Queen Elizabeth I coincided with the threat of the Spanish Armada. Hobbes was later to comment that his mother gave birth to twins “myself and fear” that year.

Thomas’ father died when Thomas was young, and the young Hobbes was sent to live with a nearby uncle. Eventually, Hobbes left his uncle and secured an education at Oxford. He became a mathematics tutor to the powerful Cavendish family (who were the Earl’s of Devonshire), and eventually a tutor to Charles Stuart (later King Charles II of Great Britain).

Hobbes’ first published work was a translation of Thucydides “History of the Peloponnesian War.” He also published a number of mathematical treatises. But, for the sake of this blog, your Maximum Leader will focus on Hobbes’ political treatise, “Leviathan.” Hobbes published a number of political tracts, but they are all variations on the same set of political beliefs. Of these “Leviathan” is both best known, and most comprehensive.

In “Leviathan,” Hobbes creates a logical model of human nature, the nature of consent to government, and the authority of government. His opening chapters set out in detail the physiological elements of human action. While they are dated by our thinking today, they still accurately depict the modus operandi of human activity. It is when Hobbes begins to discuss human motivation that he begins in earnest his philosophical discourse.

To Hobbes, man is motivated by “appetites” and “aversions.” We act to acquire things we desire, and seek to avoid thing we do not desire or will cause us harm. Human appetites are constant, insatiable, and vary in degree from man to man. Man, therefore, has the power to act of his own accord to satisfy his appetites and avoid his aversions. Man acts to bring the greatest possible good to himself, using the means and methods at his disposal. In order to bring the greatest possible good to himself, man must acquire power over others.

To Hobbes there are two types of power, original (also called natural) power, and instrumental (also called acquired) power. Original power is that power that comes from the man himself. His physical strength is the clearest examples of a man’s original, or natural, power. But also considered an original power is man’s intellect and brain-power (if you will). Instrumental powers are those that flow from their acquisition. They include money, fame, reputation, and everyone’s favourite, God’s favour (or good luck as we might call it).

Having established the nature of man, and defined man’s power, Hobbes starts to get really interesting. He asserts that the exercise or acquisition of power by one man naturally hinders or limits the exercise or acquisition of power by another man. Given that man’s appetites are insatiable; this puts man in an uncomfortable position of always being at odds with other men.

Hobbes then begins to postulate on the nature of the state. First he envisions the state of nature. That is the condition where there is no state or governmental structure that will confine the passions of individual men. That state is the condition of war by all against all. Or to use the famous quotation:
In such condition there is no place for Industry; because the fruit thereof is uncertain: and consequently no Culture of the Earth; no Navigation, nor use of commodities that may be imported by Sea; no commodious Building; no instruments of moving, and removing such things as require much force; no Knowledge of the face of the Earth; no account of Time; no Arts; no Letters; no Society; and which is worst of all, the continuall feare, and danger of violent death; And the life of man, solitary, poore, nasty, brutish, and short.
Of course, no man wants this kind of life. Man has an appetite for life, and the acquisition of power. Man is also a rational creature and will seek to avoid violent death. This rational aversion to death, is essentially man’s natural right. By limiting the extent to which a man will use his power over other men, he will, himself, enter a state of peace with other men. This is the essence of Hobbes’ social contract. All men, seeing the benefits of peace with other men, will voluntarily, or tacitly as the case may be, limit his own freedom to do whatever he will to whomever he will.

Of course, when one enters into a contract (by agreement, assent, or in the case of man in society – by birth) one is obliged or bound to agree to the terms of the contract. Once a man ceases to be obliged or bound, the fabric of the contract begins to erode, and the state of nature will arise.

Hobbes, at this point, constructs a model of a sovereign state. While he may have seemed to profess a preference for monarchy, closer reading of “Leviathan” shows that a parliamentary system would also be perfectly acceptable. For Hobbes the institutions of the sovereign state are not quite as important as the role of the sovereign state. The first job of the state is to protect the property of its citizens. As every man has a significant interest in the property of his own body, the protection of the lives of men is the most important role of a state. After protection of the body, protection of a man’s riches (possessions) and his means of living are the chief functions of the state. And a state that preserves a man’s life and property is, ultimately, a just state.

Within the context of the state, men have different obligations, based on their different appetites and abilities. Generally, those with more are bound to support the state more. Hobbes describes, for example, a tax code by which those with more pay more, based on how much he consumes in society. (Taxes, for Hobbes, are the price you pay for your very life.) Hobbes also establishes a system of justice based on contracts and rule of law.

Hobbes spends considerable energy in “Leviathan” discussing Scripture. Many facile and superficial readers of “Leviathan” assume that he is doing this to reinforce the authority of the state. Ergo: God orders you to obey legitimate civil authority, therefore one must always obey the dictates of the state. But this is not Hobbes’ goal. He uses Scripture, in many cases, to support his revolutionary idea of a state that gets is legitimate authority to rule, not from God, but from the consent of the governed. A common misinterpretation of Hobbes’ work is that he was justifying the Divine Right of Kings to rule. He was not. He wouldn’t have gone through such an elaborate explanation of the nature of man and the causes of a state to then fall back on Romans 13.

Hobbes’ great work, “Leviathan” details much more about the nature of the state, just rule, and the nature of man. But alas, this medium (the blog) doesn’t always lend itself to a lengthy exposition on a single topic. Your Maximum Leader wanted to take a moment and expound a little on this great man, who very much influenced his political thought.

If my minions would like to know more about Hobbes, and how his thought is still very much applicable to our times, let me know. Your Maximum Leader will expound further.

Carry on.

April 09, 2004

Speaking of women and website statistics

Greetings, loyal minions. Your Maximum Leader was just reviewing the site statistics provided by Superb Internet for this site. (Superb Internet, the official webhosting company of the MWO.) It seems our web traffic has dropped again. Down to an average of a meagre 30 unique visitors a day. (Could it be because no one has been writing? Humm...) Well, aside from that juicy tidbit, what more could your Maximum Leader share with you?

Women. That is what he can share with you. It seems that at least 3 unique visitors this week came here by typing "jennifer love hewitt bold naked pictures" into some search engine. Your Maximum Leader doesn't feel the need to replicate this search, but if you are here looking for photos of the Official Sex Goddess of the MWO, here is one.

Of course this could be a strategery for increasing web traffic... More writing of words on the site like Jennifer Love Hewitt naked picutres (bold or unbold). Or words like: sexy jennifer love hewitt pictures; sex jennifer love hewitt photos; nude jennifer love hewitt photos. That should give me a boost. (This is now topical since Minister of Propaganda just posted a link to the beautiful, sexy, and sometimes naked Kate Moss.)

Not that your Maximum Leader would want to cheapen his site in such a way to just increase web traffic...

Since your Maximum Leader has started reviewing some of the search terms used to find this site... Here were some others (with comment from your Maximum Leader):

1) iraq war usa saddam hussen (understand this one)
2) maryland s economy in 1770 s (don't ever recall discussing the economy of Maryland in the 18th century)
3) clean public transportation baghdad (don't recall ever discussing public transport, much less clean public transport in Baghdad)
4) servalance equipment sound (someone might have misspelled surveillance in a recent post on intellegence... )
5) jennifer love hewitt bold naked pictures (ahem...)
6) gooning masturbation (sounds like this could be a porn flick)
and the big big big big winner....
7) boy sodomized dog (your Maximum Leader has no idea where that came from)
So those were the highlights of the list. What a great list it is too.

Continuing on the site statistics subject, you may be asking yourself "Self, other than people looking for naked photos of Jennifer Love Hewitt (Official Sex Goddess of the MWO); who might be referring readers to this page?" Well, your Maximum Leader has that answer, for this month at least... The number one referrer would be our very own Poet Laureate, the Big Hominid. Number two would be the very lovely and funny Anna at Primal Purge. Next would be our very loyal minion, and involuntary celebate, Kilgore Trout. Next would be the great Dr. Keith Burgess-Jackson. And an honourable mention goes to Classical Values. Since Classical Values has such a long blogroll, your Maximum Leader is extra pleased that a few good surfers chose to click through to us, here at Nakedvillainy.com. One more honourable mention will go to Biffa the Pieman. Your Maximum Leader has never heard of Biffa the Pieman, but now that he knows that people (okay two people) are coming from that site to this one, he will go over to Biffa's site and read some of his stuff.

That appears to be enough about your Maximum Leader's site statistics... Which overall is not a very stimulating topic he is sure, but because we can write Jennifer Love Hewitt nude over and over again it might be a topic to review next month.

Carry on.