THE OTHER SHOE DROPS: Updates To Previous Posts
† Advice To A Son Heading Off To War: In an op-ed last August, Lt. Col. James Zumwalt, II, USMCR (Ret.) revealed something that is known to the family members of soldiers killed in Iraq but to few others: “[W]e are fighting an enemy unequaled in its brutality and barbarity … no American soldier taken captive by this enemy has returned alive … once their remains were found, their condition attested … that they were victims of sadistic torture, mutilation and decapitation.” The Stiletto and others have repeatedly – and vainly - pointed out that Islamofascist insurgents do not scruple to follow the Geneva Conventions (which John McCain was disingenuous about on the campaign trail), and now that the Defense Department is reversing course and allowing the media to photograph the flag-covered coffins of fallen soldiers to be photographed by the media – for a variety of purposes, not all of which are to report the news - it’s only a matter of time before a Gold Star mother or a military wife allows Americans to see what Zumwalt is talking about. Ironically, it was the Pentagon’s policy forbidding photographs that obscured the war’s true cost, not President Bush.
If a shrinking economy, soaring jobless claims and a troubled financial sector are not angst-producing enough, the threat of increased crime is leading many conversations toward a nagging and persistent question: Will the bad old days of record numbers of murders and ubiquitous street muggings be far behind? …
“If you’re nervous, some noise can make you jump,” said Dennis C. Smith, a professor at the Robert F. Wagner Graduate School of Public Service at New York University, who has studied the New York City Police Department’s strategies to reduce crime. “And I think we are understandably very, very nervous.” …
But crime statistics and people’s feelings about public safety “are not perfectly correlated,” Professor Smith said.
“People have had this longtime misconception that crime came down in
† The Simpsons: 18 Years, 400 Episodes, Millions of Laughs (last item): Matt Groening’s animated comedy "The Simpsons," which has been airing on Fox since 1989, will return for a 21st season this fall, making it the longest running prime time series in U.S. television history. Mazel tov, and may “Futurama” be as long-lived.
† Updates To Previous Posts (last item, Now Is Not The Time To Talk About Race): The New York Times’ Brent Staples wrote a commentary with the sweeping hed, “The Ape in American Bigotry, From Thomas Jefferson to 2009,” leading The Stiletto to expect a disquisition on the various ethnic minorities characterized and depicted as apes or sub-human – most notably Irish, but also Chinese and Italians.
But it was same old, same old.
[Hat Tip: Zuben Elgenubi, who posted the cartoon on
† Updates To Previous Posts (fourth item, Living In These Mad, Mad, Madoff Times): The New York Times reports that “the real estate market in Manhattan has become so unnerving to buyers that some are forfeiting six-figure deposits rather than close on deals they have made,” citing a buyer who “walked away from a $780,000 deposit” on a duplex penthouse in Soho, and another who “forfeited a deposit of as much as $1.1 million” on a classic prewar co-op on Park Avenue. “In each case, the buyers had signed their contracts before the financial meltdown last fall, but decided in recent months that because values in the luxury real estate market have dropped 20 to 40 percent, it no longer made sense to go through with their deals.”
† Updates To Previous Posts (third item, Your Butt Will Look Good In These Jeans): Gushing that “Those toned arms are becoming a trademark,” CNN.com tells readers “how to get Michelle Obama's toned arms.” It’s true that Michelle Obama’s arms are her best feature – and she knows it, having posed for the March cover of Vogue in a sleeveless silk sheath and for the cover of People magazine in a lacy pink sleeveless dress – but brown-nosing “journalists” would do the First Lady a favor if they instead told her how to get Beyoncé’s butt (no junk in that trunk).
Take that Vogue cover, for instance. Michelle Obama is artfully angled and posed so her huge hips are hidden by the sofa cushions; the skirt of the dress is scrunched to place extra fabric around the hips so the form-fitting cut doesn’t accentuate her thighs; and her arm obscures most of her chest so as not to call attention to how comparatively bottom-heavy her figure is, since her breasts are very, very small. A lot of photographic sleights of hand went into this cover, just like those “before” and “after” photos in ads for miracle weight loss aids:
Editorial Note: If any reader thinks The Stiletto is being harsh about Michelle Obama’s figure flaws, she’s only compensating for the fawning coverage elsewhere. For every article she comes across that swoons over the First Lady’s “buff arms” The Stiletto will point out that her hips, thighs and butt are disproportionately large, even for a woman who is six feet tall. Just to keep things in perspective. Oh, and maxillofacial and orthognathic surgeons are no doubt fantasizing over how they would fix Michelle Obama’s lantern jaw.