1. Dr Leo Strauss says

    Yup, one has to create some kind of activity record to bill against a retainer. For downplaying a massacre, wonder at what rate a tweet gets billed, or a blog comment.

    “To Kazakh Ministry of Foreign Affairs:

    For Services Rendered In National Campaign Promoting Peaceful Protest Successfully $______.”

    It’s a tricky thing, billing. In some ways, Ames may be the best thing going for those flogging that account. Finally there’s a concrete and identifiable opponent and meme to be combatted. Much of the foreign representation racket is like Amway, and those further down the cascading disbursement ladder may not fully understand who’s really paying them or why in any event.

  2. says

    @Dr Leo Strauss
    When Ames original article about the massascre was cross posted by Yves Smith at Naked Capitalism, she said the pushback response was very much not organic – So JF was part of foreign campaign to influence opinion.

    Hate to sound like Uncle Pat, but foreign moolah is way too influential in American media

  3. Dr Leo Strauss says

    This also explains much of the recent twitter feud mentioned here.

    Drinking bathwater (and who hires government and think tank flunkies on a contract basis to teach a course — as in a flea lying down hoping to catch a dog). When Foreign Policy was a thin narrow publication during the Cold War it was actually a serious platform. Its undeniably successful web presence more like a name-dropping Facebook.

  4. Dr Leo Strauss says


    Tweets about the regime and the laughable Chevron aspect are what they are. Fair game for Ames. One senses a certain relish when he knows he’s on a successful hunt, a certain jauntiness in his prose.

  5. says

    As brutal as that takedown was — unfair in someways (life in the stans is more unfair), JF probably regrets starting the whole thing by trying to minimize a massacre ordered by a cruel tyrant.

  6. says

    JF is clever enough that his twitter feed totally obscures his advocacy on behalf on Kazakhstan tyrants. He posts photos of food, etc. Lots of pop culture stuff. Overcoming a bad GPA is normally a good thing in my book, but ….life’s a bitch

  7. says

    Have not met any of the protagonists in this feud. Exchanged tweets with JF mostly over pop culture references and joint mocking of various AgitProp forays from the Washington Times.

    The details in this feud are both disappointing an sobering. Even if the truth is probably somewhere in-between.

    NG, Lockmart, GD, SAIC, CSC, KBR, Raytheon, Boeing ,etc. since 2001 are bloated beyond even internal recognition. Each in terms of exponential headcount growth could well be a an independent Third World country demographically.

    As long time readers know, have personally represented Lockmart, GD, TRW (when it was independent), CSC, Accenture, NG, IBM, Titan, Boeing, Dyncorp (before and after CSC acquisition) etc., etc., etc. at the Vice President or General Counsel’s equivalent – Raytheon was a little less engaged. All during the height of Christian Socialist Militaristic Authoritarianism.

    If a company made things blow up, the aircraft or delivery vehicles/platforms, or the logistical/technical C4ISR overall/logistical reach back to CONUS, probably worked with them.

    The human capital level at senior levels generally quite good. Not necessarily Ivy, but good as to be of no import (except to the Dick Nixon types). Lower down, things became more ‘diverse’.

    As they should. Let me explain.

    The ‘ground troops’ for any of the behemoths are useful often for their connections. Can they get a meeting? Will their phone call get returned? Are they in the gossip loop? Whether at DoD, on the Hill or elsewhere. And often the most successful at this level *are not* from good pedigree schools precisely *because* they fit in/schmooze, glad hand with the ‘Normal Amerikhuns.’

    There used to be generally accepted standards about executive personnel/rotating door two star and three stars. All went down the crapper. Emblematic? A woman with a law degree from Jerry Falwell’s TV studio helping to run DoJ with Fredo, etc. That was like Caligula putting a horse in the Senate.

    It doesn’t take a smart or ‘quality educated person’ to collect gossip/intel/schmooze/network. Intelligence is often a liability. People skills matter most. And in this feud, one of them has over 4,000 Twitter followers showing some capacity to network. The problem for the defense sector as a whole is that during the bloat years the levee en masse diluted quality almost everywhere.

    The Boy King activated a renewed primitivism against elite education. Another one of his epic wins for Non-Rightists. Go team.

  8. Comment says

    Pseudo liberals, pro war liberals, cryptos of all types – all are due for a shellacking. Personally, I have no problem with good old boys who are just always pro war or right wing meatheads (a lot of my friends). But these frauds in the media just suck and it’s time they got confronted,

  9. sglover says

    Happy New Year, y’all….

    In my mental magazine rack the Atlantic’s been right alongside Slate, as a rag that **has** to be some billionaire’s hobby, cuz it sure doesn’t rate even a mouse click. (I mean, McCardle?!?! Kaus?!?!? C’mon…..) Even so, if Ames’ piece is even half correct the Beltway crowd really is scraping bottom. I knew your basic LockMartNorGrumRaytheon shill was likely as not a sociopath, but I always assumed they at least had good credentials: One of the Ivies, or at least a top twenty public university. Colorado?!?!? Isn’t that where “Dr” Rice got her “scholarship” on?

  10. DrLeoStrauss says

    Good break down. This one might go the distance.

    Will be interesting to see how soon exhaustion sets in and whether anyone will be able to remember what started it all.

  11. Comment says

    We’ll boxing wise Ames pummelled Foust – like Tyson at his prime fighting Robert Reich/ But Greenwald is equal to Ames and as mean in his own unique way, but he has not really gotten his gameface on.

    But Ames has The Atlantic crowd in his crosshairs and I suspect it’s a matter of time before all of them (Fallows, Goldberg, TNC, etc) are in the mix.

    The liberal sentimentalist in me felt bad for Foust when Ames was kicking the living crap out of him, but there is no doubt that he has covered for dictators and has bullied war victims and mocked anti war people. So it’s justified. But a bit ugly.

  12. DrLeoStrauss says

    Well it’s a brutal audit when all is said and done. Facts are facts, tone aside.

    Of course, Ames is right about the regime. And Chevron. In fact, I represented some of those companies first entering fUSSR space (the early deals were all about extractive resources like gold or oil or infrastructure because collateralization was easier amidst such uncertainty/chaos).

    Ames is also right that social intelligence is the vital life skill in decadent times rather than truly substantive training and knowledge. The Atlantic is merely one example of perceived social utility being the most important metric. Can’t walk 10 feet and shake a stick without running into something similar.

    Confess we didn’t read all the comments and tweets, etc. If this was a boxing match, how would you award the points?

  13. Comment says

    Great hate debate going on in the comments section of that Joshua Foust link above – btw Greenwald Vs. Ames

  14. Dr Leo Strauss says

    In the end, agree with you Paul. Adobe is a shadow of its former self, pushing bloatware much like Redmond.

    Apple, however, had purely selfish internal business model reasons for refusing Adobe and others access to APIs, a routine practice for MSFT, which is why graphics cards and plugins perform infinitely better there.

    Most important to Apple was the threat that Flash/Flex/Air would be an independent development platform from Xcode and Cocoa. Apple wants to lock developers into its tools. Hence the initial ban on independently complied code. Finally, years later, Apple relented under DoJ pressure.

    Apple claims about ‘battery life’ issues are suspect, of course. Ubiquitous video even under H.264 drains batteries far more. Flash written in Actionscript can have a footprint in the 20-25k range that runs loops around anything HTML 5 and JQuery can do as of today.

    Adobe was too moribund to catch up to the new mobile world after iOS (like Nokia) their fault. Nothing Adobe could do would ever get approval from Apple and they didn’t wake up. To those of us who used the tools under Macromedia, many felt something like this would happen when Adobe bought them.


  15. Dr Leo Strauss says

    Happy New Year, Tbilisi, hope things are well.

    Re RP, yours is a trenchant analysis. Pre-Iowa Caucus he’s depleted uranium in an Armor Piercing Fin-Stabilized Discarding Sabot round amongst the Rightist circular firing squad. As a populist agent of he chaos serves well. And he makes others address uncomfortable truths.

    Agree if he improbably even approaches higher office, his zeal will be on things he can do unilaterally, i.e. foreign policy. We’d guess secondarily would the monetary mania (albeit requiring congressional engagement). Then, as you noted, the other Randian stuff.

    As of this morning the Santorum bundlers and assorted persona we keep in touch with are feeling very bullish. Florida now is a talked about prize (before Iowa won). But then, recall in November 1941 before Moscow, as Army Group Center ground to a halt and froze, Chief of the General Staff Halder met with staff and was envisioning an encircling movement meeting up 200 kilometers behind Moscow.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


CommentLuv badge