December 22nd, 2010 / 2:24 pm

Just in time for ye Christmas spirit.


  1. Anonymous

      jimmy, all the teachers left the htmlg lounge for winter break. you don’t need to post anything for another week or two.

  2. jesusangelgarcia

      nice conflating of htmlgiant and martin amis, among other fine observations, mr. chen. happyhappy, joyjoy…

  3. jereme_dean

      jimmy, all the teachers left the htmlg lounge for winter break. you don’t need to post anything for another week or two.

  4. letters journal

      The most glaring examples are the “Why won’t anyone say they are Jewish?” article or more generally their affinity for Islamist terrorism.

  5. letters journal

      The most glaring examples are the “Why won’t anyone say they are Jewish?” article or more generally their affinity for Islamist terrorism.

  6. Melissa Broder

      Why doesn’t this post have more goddamn comments?

  7. Melissa Broder

      Why doesn’t this post have more goddamn comments?

  8. mjm

      whats wrong with adbusters?

  9. Jimmy Chen

      it’s cool man, don’t worry

  10. mjm

      I’m less really, you know, bold lettered worried about it, and more asking the creator of a diagram why he thought to add Adbusters to it. Because if it were really some random thing, then it could’ve been anything in its placement, and the other placements. But it wasn’t. You purposefully chose Adbusters to make a comment, whether you were being serious in that comment or not doesn’t matter, you were attempting a commentary. What I am asking if, what was your commentary specifically (and if this is unfair to ask, given I should just appreciate the diagram as such), then I will ask you this: Why Adbusters?

  11. Jimmy Chen

      i actually had The New Yorker, but that seemed predictable, so then Adbusters came into my mind. I like adbusters’ art direction, but their anti-everything take is sorta boring, and i have a queue in my head of things i like to poke jokes at, so it was their turn. and it’s in “fraud” because the anarchy glorification is sorta hypocritical, like they sell at Borders books, and i feel they’re almost like a design mag. but overall, its inclusion was mainly glib.

  12. jereme_dean

      I liked the original answer better.

  13. letters journal

      Why Adbusters? Because they’re anti-semitic morons.

  14. mjm

      Uhh. I didn’t mean to like that. Doesnt mean I hate it either. How are they anti-semitic?

  15. letters journal

      The most glaring examples are the “Why won’t anyone say they are Jewish?” article or more generally their affinity for Islamist terrorism.

  16. Melissa Broder

      Why doesn’t this post have more goddamn comments?

  17. Sean

      Another of your best. Funny rarely happens, since it takes first intellect, second timing. In writing, it even happens less. I toast you with this oil can I am drinking, sir.

  18. NLY

      Fraud wouldn’t be the category for The New Yorker, anyway. They’re more or else exactly what they present themselves as.

  19. John Minichillo

      Whereas JD is always on break.

  20. mjm

      Can it be said that their ‘affinity’ toward Islamist terrorism is partially to shed light on the possibility of misinformation? Like, let’s say that guy John Brown who wanted to seize a federal arsenal and, you know, try to set off a slave revolt in, I think 1850-something. He was killed by soldiers, of course, but he was regarded among the government as a terrorist, and, somewhat, in history as one. Depending on which side you were on. But now, in these times, it is still possible for us not to know whether “that guy right there” or “that group right there” are terrorists in the same sense as those “really bad guys who was batshit hell bent and killin lots of people” because of some ethnic prejudice.

      I don’t know the article you speak of. And I guess I am kind of assuming you didn’t separate them into two categories already, and you feel Adbusters doesn’t separate. But I think they do. I never sensed any anti-semiticism, which is weird because I have many Jewish friends and am usually kind of aware of it. I’ll try to be uber-aware then and maybe reread some stuff.

  21. letters journal

      If you’re comparing Islamist-fascist groups like Hamas and Hezbollah to the late John Brown, I’m not really sure what to tell you.

  22. jereme_dean

      hahaha you say that like it’s a bad thing john.

  23. mjm

      Those are two groups out of… well, more than two. Kind of what I mean man. Now, if your energy is directed toward those two groups specifically, then I sort of get where you’re coming from. Maybe you missed my point?

  24. deadgod

      mj might be suggesting that families in Ramallah who can’t get to their five-km-distant fields/offices/shops in fewer than three hours / day and families in ‘Pakistan’ who have relatives getting droned into cheeseburgers at weddings are “radicalized” directly in something like the way John Brown was “radicalized” sympathetically.

  25. letters journal

      Well, Hezbollah and Hamas are two specific Islamist groups that Adbusters are enamored with.

  26. letters journal

      The John Brown metaphor would only sort-of work if what John Brown did after being radicalized was blow up slaves and other abolitionists (ie. the victims of Islamist terrorism are almost always Muslim [the targets are mosques, shrines, schools, and civilian areas like marketplaces], which makes the American foreign policy -> terrorism theory look insufficient at best or just wrong at worst [does anyone really think terrorism would stop if the US military withdrew from the Middle East?]).

  27. Jimmy Chen

      i guess jihad to be there

  28. mjm

      @deadgod…. what? No.

      @ Letters — Well, I never mentioned America specifically, except in regards to homegrown terrorism. And somehow, my point of the unified “they are all bad” mindset having inherent problems went unnoticed. So, hopefully my just saying it plain out without an analogy will do. Terrorism tends to arise out of many reasons, some being local governments, other being foreign governments, some being ethnic prejudices, some being ignorance. I mean, that’s like 20,000 books worth to write about, why terrorism exists. But this is once again my issue, you know — at least we’ve cleared up and specified which groups in regards to Adbusters you have taken up arms about. I can understand that. Though I still hold by the idea that, beyond (and maybe, even within) terrorist groups there are a multitude of things going on, some which aren’t simply “bad evil guys”.

  29. deadgod

      But Brown did understand that the war he wanted to start would mean the violent deaths of “slaves and other abolitionists” – some of the “slaves”, all of whom he wanted freed.

      Not the deaths of all of them – not ‘destroying a whole village to save it’ – but sacrificing some Americans (including some “slaves”) so that America and the Americans living after the sacrifice would be rid of the monstrosity of slavery? including, in the ‘sacrifice’, his sons and himself? That’s exactly what John Brown was up for.

      I think ‘dying on one’s feet rather than living (or dying) on one’s knees’ is a dilemma many western-Asian people feel has been imposed on them – indeed: perhaps a false dilemma, though perhaps not.

      If the US military were in, for example, Iraq pursuing American interests, that would be a different question – a different ‘terror’ question – than the prevailing case, which is that the US military is in Iraq on behalf of another country.

  30. letters journal

      The US is in Iraq on behalf of another country? Which country? I think I know what you’re going to say, but you should just come on out and say it.

  31. deadgod

      America sold weapons of mass destruction to Saddam Hussein for the pecuniary benefit of a handful of Americans, and so Saddam could kill Iranians, the latter who were also buying weapons of mass destruction from America (to kill Iraqis).

      America then invaded Iraq, bankrupted its own economy, mired its military in a no-mission-so-no-‘victory’ quag, killed tens of thousands and neglected its responsibility (at the most charitable) to protect hundreds of thousands of non-‘enemy’ civilians, exposed thousands of its soldiers to lethal resistance to its mission-free mission, expedited the looting of an antiquity-filled country by command neglect and incompetence, exposed its own leaders (and those they represent) to the well-deserved ridicule, contempt, and incredulity of allies and enemies alike, and directed essential resources away from critical international problems – including the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction, the development of democratic societies, and the spread of Islamist violence – , all for a non-democratic, nuclear-armed theocracy which is itself allied only to the most-fanatically-committed-to-violent-solutions of its own citizens.

      Is there something controversial in this view??




  33. letters journal

      Are you talking about Israel or Pakistan? If you think either Israel or Pakistan control American foreign policy, you are a fool.

  34. jereme_dean


  35. deadgod

      Good response, letters: being unable to distinguish between a reference to Israel and a reference to Pakistan. Let’s us Americans not make policy distinctions between them: not one more soldier, not one more dollar – for either of those pseudo-allies! Down with Pakistan First! And, letters, down with Israel First! We agree.

      And ye – e – e – s . . . of course it’d be “fool”ish to see “control” in the efforts of AIPAC to influence “American foreign policy”, of course it’d be “fool”ish to see “control” in the equation of Palestinian and ‘Pakistani’ civilian interests with “Islamic terrorism” throughout the American media, of course it’d be “fool”ish not to equate an absence of ‘Pakistani’ “control” over “American foreign policy” with a similar absence of Israeli “control” over “American foreign policy”. Why, anyone hoping to get elected to, say, the US Senate is just as likely to campaign for ‘”Pakistani” security’ as to campaign for ‘Israeli security’! We agree again.

  36. letters journal

      Okay, yes, you are a fool.

      Israel indeed receives more financial “assistance” from the US than any other country. However, much of this is mandated to be spent on US military equipment; that is, it’s a reliable means of backdoor subsidization of the military industrial complex and the US economy as a whole. Secondly, Egypt will consistently be second on the list of US financial “assistance.” The most significant commonality is that these two countries sandwich the Suez Canal. It’s long been a geopolitical axiom that in terms of controlling the globe, it is necessary to control the Mediterranean, and to control the latter it is necessary to control the Suez Canal. More than anything the US desires stable and reliable allies — who are not warring with each other — along the Canal. Inferring “Israeli power” from US support for Israel mistakes correlation for cause and effect. As noted, the US lends massive support to the oppressive Mubarak regime, not mentioning the brutal Colombian and Turkish governments, though there are no Egyptian, Colombia or Turkish, et al., lobbies or ruling classes pulling strings behind the scenes. I do find it a relevant coincidence that it is mainly Jews who are accused of usurpation, puppeteering, dual loyalties, and other traditionally anti-Semitic canards. And, again, this has the effect of letting the US, and to a degree the UK, France, et al., off the hook.

  37. deadgod

      A perfect example of the “control” exerted by Israel – the results of which one could fairly call foolish: driving the point-missing dismissal, evasion, and misdirection (by false equality) of reasonable perspective, is the identification of balanced perception of America’s international interest with anti-Semitism.

      Were I a neo-con, I, too, would place ‘betraying America’s fiscal security to China’ under the rubric of ‘the overriding global centrality of the Suez fucking Canal‘. That, letters, is an example of “begging the question”.

  38. Tadd

      “Ass rape, duh” is fucking hysterical.

      That’s all.