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17h03 UTC; FRIDAY, 10 FEBRUARY 2012: If the annual conservative strategem-perfecting confab in Washington known as CPAC (now well underway as I write this, know) is any indication thus far, expect there to be plenty of crude, hysterical excesses of fanaticism expected among conservative prolefeeders all the more inasmuch as Indecision 2012 is seen in conservative circles to be Of Extreme and Utmost Importance for Reclaiming Our Dear Lovely Nation From Itself as a Peculiar Among the Nations (as if holding "deeply and dearly" the belief Afrikaner Nationalist types last pushed that "every country has a nation allocated unto it by God", though not put frankly into  words).

Especially if the fanaticism is of a sort rivalled by the Sportpalast Speech of Nazi Propaganda Minister Josef Goebbels on 17 February 1943 as called for Germany to go into a state of Total War to save the Thousand-Year Reich and "Western Civilisation" in the bargain, reaching its climax with Herr Goebbels proclaiming at its end "Nun, steh Volk, und die Strom bricht los!" ("Arise now, my people, and unleash the storm!")

Now tell me, honestly, if the preceding image (via, ultimately via the Marine Corps Times) amounts to an insult upon the memory of such who served in Europe during World War II and fought against Nazi fanaticism and tyranny, in particular such who died in combat.

In fact, this was actually taken in Afghanistan's Helmand Province in the fall of 2010.

And the troops in question claimed that the use of the "double-thunderbolt" logo of the Nazis' secret-police force was to better identify them as "scout snipers," unaware all the while of its past sinister associations. As explains, "
The symbolic appropriation may indeed be unwitting, but witlessness is no more desirable a trait in downrange warriors than malice is."

Continues Mother Jones:
Why is this making news now? Several Marines who were concerned about the photos contacted Mikey Weinstein (no relation to Adam Weinstein, as broke the original story), president of the Military Religious Freedom Foundation, a nonprofit that watchdogs religious intolerance in the armed services. Their behavior, Weinstein told me, "eviscerates good order, morale, and discipline," in addition to angering non-Americans and alienating survivors of the Nazis' atrocities. He published the photos on the foundation's website and sent a letter to Gen. John Amos, the Marine Corps commandant, demanding punishment for the Marines involved. "That flag symbolizes the vile ideology of Hitlerian fascism and sends a menacing signal to religious minorities within the United States armed forces," Weinstein said.

Walter Plywaski, a survivor of the Lodz ghetto and Auschwitz concentration camp in World War II who later became a US citizen and Air Force veteran, expressed disgust at the Marines' behavior. "The photographs below roil my intestines and break my heart beyond words to express," he wrote in an email to Weinstein. "I wish I could really believe that these sniper teams innocently combined the view of the United States flag with the central symbol of the murderous SS!"

The Corps says the matter has already been handled internally. "Certainly, the use of the 'SS runes' is not acceptable and Scout Snipers have been addressed concerning this issue," Marine Capt. Brian Block told Politico in a statement today.

But that's not good enough for Weinstein. "We're hearing that they may have moved Marines from one unit to another, they may have reprimanded them, they may have given them nonjudicial punishment," he said, referring to the military's most lenient administrative form of punishment. "That's unacceptable. If this is not a court-martial offense, there are no court-martial offenses."
So where exactly IS the outrage here among World War II veterans, Holocaust survivors, their relatives even, not to mention veterans' organisations? (Especially when you stop and consider where many so-called "Constitutional Militia" and "patriot" movements and sects holding high carnival in certain parts of the country of late are embracing ideologies and articles of faith straight out of the Fascist/Nazi/Christian Nationalist playbook, claiming all the while they are seeking to "defend The AmeriKKKa We Love and Cherish Deeply and Dearly.")


And talk about religious fanaticism in a related breadth: With the Elmer Gantry element's GOP Presidential preference in form of Rick Santorum telling CPAC that President Obama's sham "War on Religion" was (in Santorum's words) "leading America to the guillotine," how do we know he won't be calling upon his dear lovely "REAL AmeriKKKan" drookies to go into hysterically full-on prayer and fasting in the old sacklcoth and ashes, weeping and wailing and bawling and boohoohooing before Bog and His Holy Angels, Archangels and Saints in Their Collective Mercy Upon Our Dear Lovely Nation as was Led Astray Like Lost Sheep From His Divinely-Ordained Will and Plan Therefor in excesses of depraved fanaticism rivalled by Japan's manufactured displays of fanaticism in the waning weeks of World War II after the German surrender, urging the Japanese People and Nation to take their own lives if need be to save Japan from "capitulation," all the while claiming to act in the name and majesty of the Showa Emperor?


Spot the fatal flaws here: How exactly is it possible to implement the conservative article of faith calling upon the schools to emphasise "useful industrial and job skills" in their curriculum and syllabus when it's well known that:
  • conservative contempt for free public education has translated into serious funding cuts for public education throughout their Carnival of the Vanities, as it were;
  • said funding cuts over the last 30 years or so have essentially left high-school graduates in the interim without realistically-marketable job or career skills as make them open to exploitation by "work-from-home" and "work online" scam operatives;
  • such policies have had exceptionally adverse affects upon lower-income, economically-disadvantaged and National Minority-dominant communities as are targets of conservative prolefeed contempt for "lack of healthy moral compass or willingness to find work" forcing such to go on State welfare "to the point of dependency tending to enslavement";
  • their continued insistence that unskilled, labour-intensive manufacturing is the Once and Future Socioeconomic Backbone of Our Beloved Nation flying in the face of their own tax policies tacitly excusing unskilled positions being outsourced overseas, particularly in countries with reckless and utter contempt for job and workplace safety and the rights of workers; and
  • their pushing a platform based on the Afrikaner Nationalist slogan of 'n Volk red homself ("a people rescues itself"), which sees appeals to Class Consciousness and National Solidarity as best equipped to "empower the poor towards Industry, Self-Reliance and Personal Responsibility," howbeit without offering any sort of advice, tools or motivation towards such ends (such to be viewed as "promoting dependency" incompatible with ekonomesie vryheid met Amerikaanse eienskappe "gebore ons die Volk, die Volk te doen" being mutually interconnected with Our National and Sovereign Identity, as if insisting that the poor "need to draw on their own resources alone" if they expect to achieve the end result thus sought)?

Is it just me, or does the portrait on bottles of Mrs. Stewart's Bluing (as used since its introduction in 1883, save for a short period in the early 1970's when a marketing-driven younger-looking old lady was used) just make you want to break out in hysterical laughter in its Luscious Glory of sternness such as would be enough to strike fear into the hearts of orphaned children unfortunately placed under her care (especially such involving the old Fels-Naptha Soap to wash out the mouths of the toilet-mouthed)?

(As a matter of fact, such was actually based on the mother-in-law of the company's co-founder, Al Stewart, whose wife was hesitant to lend her image to laundry-bluing labels. Even more interesting is that, back when it was still bottled in glass, the warning "THIS BOTTLE CONTAINS MRS. STEWART'S BLUING" was molded into same to protect consumers from imitations and shady refills of inferior bluing; same was discontinued when plastic bottles were introduced in the mid-1970's.)


Those of you with old Kodak cameras, be they the Brownies or Hawkeyes of our grandparents or the Instamatics of our parents, may not realise it, but such could be even more valuable as collector items within measurable distance, depending on manufacture date and quality of manufacture: This because of Kodak's announcing that, as part of its restructuring out of Carey Street, it will discontinue manufacturing digital cameras and instead licence other camera manufacturers to use its name and trademarks, effectively ending a 123-year heritage dating back to George Eastman's original Kodak box camera in 1889, preloaded with a roll of 100-exposure film (and when it was all finished, camera and all were sent back to Kodak for processing and insertion of a fresh film roll into the camera).

But then again, be careful about who you sell the old Kodaks to; make sure the buyers are of good repute (a check with the Better Business Bureau wouldn't hurt) and are willing to offer good prices subject to thorough appraisal depending on a careful examination inside and out. And be wary of "fly-by-night" or itinerant buyers seeking to cash in on the news as may offer only a fraction of its real worth.

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