I don't tend to get involved in local hoo-has but for my charity stuff, but this is interesting for its example of the hive-mind power.
Apparently down 'round San Diego, they're having a special election to replace Representative Randy "Duke" Cunningham -- you know, the fellow with the bribe menu. So a return to integrity and honesty is kind of an issue down there right now.
One of the candidates is this Howard Kaloogian fellow. His "Moving America Forward" gang is one of thise lovely scrums where they take a couple reporters, get driven around the Green Zone in a Hummer, and then scream how it's all peaceful in Iraq. I am sure those 14 beheaded guys they found today are finding it very peaceful.
Even more reprehensibly, this is the sort of rhetoric he spews, as the caption to a photo of beautiful, peaceful downtown Iraq just a few months ago:
"We took this photo of dowtown Baghdad while we were in Iraq. Iraq (including Baghdad) is much more calm and stable than what many people believe it to be. But, each day the news media finds any violence occurring in the country and screams and shouts about it - in part because many journalists are opposed to the U.S. effort to fight terrorism."
As I always say -- name one. Name one journalist who says America shouldn't fight terrorism. But, at this point, just typical kind of boring, lazy crap ...
... until somebody noticed that there was no Arabic script on any of the signs. And the wardrobe was off. The taxi seems weird ... hey, wait, is that Lenny Kravitz?
Within three measly hours, the hive mind had figured out the pic is probably of somewhere in Turkey. How it happened is what fascinates me. People found addresses for the "2.Noter" sign (a quite specifically Turkish notary office). They found the Turkish ice cream company, Edo, and found Turkish speakers -- at 4:00 am in their time zone -- who could confirm what those fragment words meant. And pictures of Turkish taxis with their oddly placed gas-caps. One person went on Skype and hustled up some complete strangers in Turkey who spoke English, sent them the photo and dug up some opinions. When somebody pointed out that the location might be Kurdish, and simply mislabeled, a person who spoke both Kurmanci and Turkish pointed out the exclusionary differences making it unlikely.
Hell, one person even hunted up the local cement plant that made the street planters for municipalities in Turkey, and posted pics showing those distinctive planters and benches. Right now, the little bastards are tracking down all the local Turkish newspapers to see if they can ail down the actual intersection.
This reminds me of a time on this blog I posted a question based solely on an anecdote of an incident that occured in a recent foreign election. The answer was posted before I could even check to see if my post had gone through.
I preface this with a caveat -- I may be foolishly assuming that Mr. Kaloogian did not find the absolutely most Turkish section of Baghdad, Little Istanbul, so Turkish indeed that not only do they use mostly Roman letters but absolutely no Arabic -- well, if that's the case, then , all apologies, sir. As a matter of fact, I will donate $100 to your campaign if this is indeed Baghdad, for I will have wronged you.
But if not, then, well, your vicious mendacious criticism of people who disagree with you is somewhat lessened in righteousness if you have, indeed, prevaricated, in a particularly heinous manner.
This is why I can never run for public office. I was a stand-up. My shit will come out.