Archive for FBI

The Book Booth: March Comes In Like a Lion Edition



Image: Michigan Daily

The Book Booth is a weekly feature at The Political Carnival, relating news, notes, and reflections from the world of books and publishing. @SeattleDan, along with his wife, SeattleTammy, are operators of both an on-line bookstore here, as well as a brick and mortar storefront mini-store in Hoquiam, WA at 706 Simpson Ave (Route 101 South). Both have been in the book business since shortly after the Creation, or close to 6000 years now.

The Book Booth: March Comes in Like a Lion Edition

April might be the cruelest month, but March has its own reputation. I know many of my friends are having a very cold and snowy winter, so maybe March will provide some relief. Here in our little town, it has been such a mild winter that the Magnolia tree outside my window is in full bloom. It's gorgeous and a month too early.

The red carpets have been rolled up, the parties are long since over and the Oscar ceremony is finished for this year. The film Birdman won the big one, of course. For those who haven't seen the movie (and that would include me), the plot centers around a stage production of a short story by Raymond Carver, What We Talk About When We Talk About Love. And this has sparked a new interest in the writer often described as America's Chekov. Publishers Weekly examined the revival here.

Time travel has been a staple in science-fiction for a very long time. Also in film. Those of us old enough to remember George Pal's adaptation of The Time Machine from the early sixties who were enchanted by the Eloi and appalled by the Morlocks still love a good time travel setting. i09 has some suggestions from literature that would make very entertaining films.

Maybe some Hollywood producer would like to do a re-boot of Sherlock Holmes. Oh, wait. It's been done. Twice in the past decade alone. Well, if the writers for these need further inspiration from Arthur Conan Doyle himself, maybe they should be searching the attics of some English houses.
English Attics Hold Treasures

I mentioned a few weeks back that author and perennial Nobel Prize candidate for literature, Haruki Murakami, has begun to write an advice column, that is posted on his website. It has begun, and he has been getting some intriguing questions, and he has given both sympathetic and amusing answers.
Here are some examples. Advice from Haruki Murakami

Most writers would describe their private lives to be dull and rather humdrum. Yet, we, as readers, are fascinated by the lives of the authors. Bustle looked at some recent novels that delve into the inner drama of the literary life.
Authors' Inner Drama

It seems no one was more fascinated by the lives of the writers than J. Edgar Hoover and his acolytes at the FBI. And during the sixties, Hoover seemed to be utterly transfixed by African-American writers, and especially James Baldwin, whose file approached nearly 2000 pages. William Maxwell has written a book about the Bureau and black writers in a new book, F.B.Eyes, where he examines these would-be literary critics. Maxwell talks about his new book here.

I know many of my east coast friend, and in particular my friends in New England, are sick unto death of snow. So I'm not sure that they will love and appreciate these chilly scenes of snow in literature from MentalFloss.
Snow in Literature

Finally, it is a fun parlor game to come up with great first lines and great last lines from literature. The DailyMail in England recently polled its readers for their favorites and the winner was Peter Pan, an unusual choice. Here is the list, which is fairly Anglo-centric, though it was nice to see Dr. Seuss in there. What would be some of your favorite opening lines be?
Your Favorite Opening Lines?

May March bring you all some mild weather and beautiful flowers. And by all means, please let us know what great books you are reading this weekend.


The Obama Execution Must Be Worse Than Drawing And Quartering, says high-ranking Judeo-Christian Light



Anyone else immediately picture Mel Gibson in full kit, swinging a claymore and yelling "You'll never take oor freedom!"(?)

William Wallace did come to a drawn and quartered end, and was an actual Patriot, to boot.

But sadly, today, it was just one more highly hypocritical Florida citizen demanding President Obama's death and dismemberment. Sad, sad local loon-watch coverage had preliminary details, and the good folks at Raw Story had video.


Watchdog group Imagine 2050 reported early on the local yokel's video rant.

On July 17, Center for Immigration Studies Senior Policy Analyst Stephen Steinlight spoke to The Highlands Tea Party in Sebring, Florida. There, he expressed a desire not only to impeach President Obama but also to have him publicly lynched.

In discussing House Speaker John Boehner’s plans to sue the President, Steinlight lamented that “there’s no court that’s going to stop Obama from doing anything.” He then added, “We all know, if there ever was a president that deserved to be impeached, it’s this guy. Alright? And I wouldn’t stop. I would think being hung, drawn, and quartered is probably too good for him.”

So the order is, just to refresh:

  • Impeachment.
  • Lynching.
  • Hanging.
  • Drawing and quartering.
  • Presumably releasing the remains to Putin and Karl Rove?

Teabagger Hate for Obama - and modernity in general - grows as fast as Fvx Nation will fertilize, and they're not slowing down on the moo-doo over 'thar any day soon.





Breaking News: Benghazi Attack Leader Captured By U.S.


Benghazi attack pic(AFP/Getty Images)

Oh, no. Now what will all those Republican Benghazi conspiracy theorists going to do? WWTGS -- What Will Trey Gowdy Say?

According to the Washington Post:

U.S. Special Operations forces captured one of the suspected ringleaders of the terrorist attacks in Benghazi in a secret raid in Libya over the weekend, the first time one of the accused perpetrators of the 2012 assault has been apprehended, according to U.S. officials.

The officials said Ahmed Abu Khattala was captured Sunday near Benghazi by American troops, working alongside the FBI, following months of planning, and was now in U.S. custody “in a secure location outside Libya.” The officials said there were no casualties in the operation, and that all U.S. personnel involved have safely left Libya.

This looks bad. Bad if you're a Republican who was counting on the Benghazi special congressional committee, the eighth committee to witch-hunt the terrible Libyan tragedy, to find something to tag onto Obama and Hillary Clinton. One of the major talking points is that Obama, who promised right away to seek out and find the culprits, has done nothing since the event nearly two years ago. Nobody had been apprehended. This was a GOP talking point on the lack of interest in the Benghazi attacks and the President's concern.

So much for that asshat argument. Obama said he'd take out Osama Bin Laden. He did. He said he'd bring to justice those responsible for Ambassador Christopher Stevens and three other American deaths in this Benghazi attack, and the round-up has begun.

Now what do you have to say for yourself, Speaker Boehner on your special committee? So Obama's been doing nothing, eh?

What have you been doing? Your job is to run the Congress. Where's the jobs bill, your alternative to the ACA, the long-term unemployment extension, the immigration reform bill, minimum wage increases, etc?

Seems if anyone's asleep at the wheel, it's the House of Representatives. You're the Speaker, Boehner. Maybe you should be doing the people's work like you're being paid for and let the President do his. He's showing results.  You? Not so much. You saw what the conservatives in Virginia's 7th district did to your right hand man, Eric Cantor. Don't think it can't happen to you.


Maddow Demonstrates How Clueless The CIA Really Is



When there's something strange in your neighborhood, who you gonna call? Well if you're in the real world. it's not Ghostbusters. And it's certainly not the CIA. You'd have more luck turning on CNN or MSNBC.

Last night Rachel Maddow eviscerated the CIA for a number of hugely important blunders -- their ignorance of major events that affected our nation and our security. In case you missed the royal Rachel M. dress-down, here's a sampling:

It's hard to believe this organization whose middle letter "I" stands for intelligence could be so inept. So out of the loop. So totally ineffective. Oh, and did I leave out, so costly. For 2013, the CIA alone was budgeted for $14.787 billion.

From Rachel's report, it would have been cheaper by $14.787 billion to just turn on CNN. What's that cost, 30 bucks a month as part of basic cable?

How we spend our tax money is important. And what we do in the name of national security is paramount. So this report of incompetence is shocking.

And so is this little tidbit that was reported this morning on Talking Points Memo:

The CIA has launched an internal review after members of Congress complained that the CIA may have been monitoring Senate Intelligence Committee staffers who worked on a report about the agency's detention and interrogation program, according to reports.

This review by the CIA of a review by Congress reminds me of this classic moment:

I'd like to reassure those congressional members who think the CIA has been spying on them that even if they are, Congress has nothing to worry about. It's the same CIA who's been failing at competency reviews for years. They're more Casablanca's Inspector Renault than TV's Inspector Columbo. Now if it was CNN or MSNBC's Rachel Maddow who was running a congressional investigation, perhaps then they should be shaking in their boots.

The GOP have a new catchword, one they're using about Obama and his foreign policy. It's "feckless."

feck·less: lacking initiative or strength of character; irresponsible; "a feckless mama's boy"
synonyms: useless; worthless; incompetent; inept; good-for-nothing

Maybe the GOP neo-cons and their puppets are using the right word, but just in the wrong context.