Mission Creep In Iraq, And The President’s Bullshit

Let’s say you wanted to construct a narrative that perfectly fits the definition of mission creep. How could it improve on the following: at first you insist you are not going to be dragged into a new war in Iraq and Syria; then you rush military aid to avoid a humanitarian disaster; then you find … Continue reading Mission Creep In Iraq, And The President’s Bullshit

The Enduring Appeal Of Bullshit

Brendan Nyhan considers why absurd claims spread so quickly on the Internet: [T]ake the bizarre but instructive example of the woman who claimed to have had an implant to add a third breast – clearly an example of an implausible story that was too good to check. Initial reports circulated widely on social networks, totaling over 188,000 … Continue reading The Enduring Appeal Of Bullshit

The President’s Bullshit Legal Basis For War, Ctd

Ilya Somin takes down John Yoo’s defense of the Obama administration’s argument that the 2001 AUMF grants the president authority to go to war with ISIS: Yoo claims that the 2001 AUMF [Authorization for Use of Military Force] authorizes preemptive and preventive attacks against any terrorist group that might threaten the United States, because it states that “The … Continue reading The President’s Bullshit Legal Basis For War, Ctd

The President’s Bullshit Legal Basis For War

Eli Lake passes it along: One Obama administration official said the argument that the new war is legal under the 2001 AUMF stems from the fact that ISIS began as a franchise of al Qaeda. Initially ISIS was known as al Qaeda in Iraq and at one point its leader, Abu-Bakr al-Baghdadi, pledged allegiance to … Continue reading The President’s Bullshit Legal Basis For War

Rouhani’s Holocaust Bullshit

Iranian Jews refuse to meet Rohani, citing his non-denial denial of the Holocaust: http://t.co/dArCYWXtZe — Jeffrey Goldberg (@JeffreyGoldberg) September 25, 2013 What the Iranian president said in his interview with Amanpour: “I have said before that I am not a historian, and that when it comes to speaking of the dimensions of the Holocaust it is the … Continue reading Rouhani’s Holocaust Bullshit

Hero Or Traitor? Or A “Bullshit Choice”?

A wider debate is brewing. Ed Kilgore kicks it off with an examination of the widening gulf between those labeling Snowden a traitor and others calling him a hero: While the wind’s blowing pretty hard against Snowden in Washington, he continues to receive widespread tribute as a hero—which is, as you might know, a bit different from … Continue reading Hero Or Traitor? Or A “Bullshit Choice”?

“This Is Bullshit”

If you read one commentary on the meta-data gathering by the US government, do yourself a favor and read David Simon’s. The creator of “The Wire,” he is not exactly unversed in the intricacies of government power, police work and, er, surveillance. And he, even more than I, is baffled by the tsunami of self-righteous … Continue reading “This Is Bullshit”

Stepping In Contemplative Bullshit

In an excerpt from his new book, Intuition Pumps And Other Tools for Thinking, Daniel Dennett offers guidelines for sound thinking, which includes a wariness of what he calls “deepities”: A deepity (a term coined by the daughter of my late friend, computer scientist Joseph Weizenbaum) is a proposition that seems both important and true … Continue reading Stepping In Contemplative Bullshit

Dismembering Liberal Bullshit On Islam

Bill Maher backs me up. I’m not Islamophobic; I’m trying to tell the truth and understand what happened last week. A reader chimes in: Here’s a quote from Tocqueville, in Democracy in America: Muhammad brought down from heaven and put into the Koran not religious doctrines only, but political maxims, criminal and civil laws, and … Continue reading Dismembering Liberal Bullshit On Islam

The Gay Bullshit Detector, Ctd

A gay actor writes: This is totally true. My friends in high school would always ask me to mimic other people because I was so freakishly observant.  But as I’ve gotten older I’ve found it’s become a problem. Always watching everything from the outside and picking it apart results in me being very self conscious in … Continue reading The Gay Bullshit Detector, Ctd