October 01, 2004
Are you watching the debate? If you eat enough psychotropic drugs -- at least a kilo or so -- you can almost pretend that John Kerry is winning!
"That's not a grand coalition." -- Kerry's line on Australia, the US, and Great Britain (he managed to forget Poland, although Bush had reminded him of Poland's participation only seconds earlier). Not a grand coalition? Way to suck, Senator.
UPDATE. A martini-fuelled Stephen Green is covering this minutely. Why the hell does Kerry keep going on about global alliances and passing global tests? It just feeds directly into a Bush response about acting in America's best interests. Because, you know, he's the American president.
UPDATE II. Bush is beginning to pick apart some factual errors in Kerry's claims. Sometimes you get a hint of the temper Bush is noted for in private meetings, but which rarely surfaces publicly.
UPDATE III. We've just moved into the friendly phase of the debate: "Your daughters are great", "I respect the First Lady", "that bridge Teresa lives under is really cool", etc.
UPDATE IV. When Bush refers to Putin as "Vladimir", does it remind you of the scenes in Dr. Strangelove when Sellers, as the president, is talking to his pal Dmitri?
UPDATE V. Bush's closer was strong. Kerry recycled his convention speech.
UPDATE VI. "Nice lipstick, Senator!"
Posted by Tim Blair at October 1, 2004 12:33 PM
We're watching. Kerry is, well, Kerry. He still can't shut up about Viet Nam and he's taking notes like a sixth grader appointed to be class monitor. 5 will get you 10 that he sighs or starts shaking his head.
Okay, I'm about 15 minutes behind the live broadcast (I love Tivo) but I have to say that Treebeard is doing pretty damn well. I hate that he wants to take money away from defeating Islamonukists to enable seniors to save money on Viagra, but he's coming across as animated, not too windy, and his answer on homeland security was pretty strong stuff on a subject that it's hard to say Bush has been especially effective on. On the flip(flop) side, Bush is doing pretty well, too-- real red meat, we're at war and I kill better than he does kind of responses. Is that what people want? Or are they afraid of that?
When Kerry talks about "foreign leaders" he means the French and Germans. Oops Bush just nailed him on Osama,
Kerry just (as noted before, I'm 15 min. behind) explained his Vietnam thing well, and finally handled the voting-for-before-voting-against thing honestly, but he's hanging his hat on this business of bringing in foreign countries so heavily-- do people really want to hear that the president's job will be to beg for the French and Germany and the UN to bail us out? I just don't see that as a votegetting position.
Ooh, and as I type that, Bush is ridiculing it really well. Not to mention he knows the names of foreign leaders this time. That round to Bush, no question. He made Kerry look like a smalltime TV talking head standing next to someone with real power-- and more knowledge.
My nine year old son just pointed out that Kerry is wobbling back and forth like he needs to pee.
May I puke now at the anecdote about one widow of a soldier Bush had to console? It's not that I don't believe it happened, and I understand why he has to show heart in this horrible tearjerking fashion, just ask Michael Dukakis what happens when you answer a maudlin question with cold rationality, but... there is something obscene that we expect this sort of thing and it gets focus-grouped and practiced. Makes you long for the old days when someone like FDR could lead us and inspire us without telling us about Tillie Foonman, whose pellagra made it hard to plow her grits fields.
Kerry just said "Pottery Barn" on TV. If Bush finds a way to mention Wal-Mart, he wins the election. Generally, Bush has managed to get under Kerry's skin enough that the woolier Kerry is emerging from under the forceful one we saw at the beginning. Notice how many answers he starts with a back up and sidestep instead of a to-the-point answer.
Oh holy fuck, Kerry just said we were there to take the oil. Or close enough, he kind of left wiggle room as to whether he believes it, but he sure as hell just raised it. They're celebrating at Moveon.Org, and Kerry just lost another state.
I found the president's statement that that a doctrine needed to be clear and would be enforced was a line that had a lot of traction. He should have pressed further with it.
Kerry's analogy of the Iraq war being like Roosevelt invading Mexico in reposnse to Pearl Harbor was a giant error. It's such a silly and extreme assertion, he may have even lost a few of his own supporters on that one.
As for Blair negociating with terrorist kidnappers, he has yet to go in for that procedure to bring back his natural heart rythme.
I see the ad that's going to appear starting on Monday: "John Kerry wants America to have to pass a 'global test' before we can defend ourselves..."
Did anyone notice that John Kerry just endorsed the wisdom of mutually assured destruction? I wonder if he felt that way about it in 1972.
Bush just said "nucular" and referenced the Iranian "myoo-lahs." I suspect there's a whole staff working up these folksy "mistakes."
Kerry just endorsed giving nuclear fuel to Iran on TV. Now, this idea is not as insane as it sounds. If it truly gives us an in with the myoolahs, it might make sense. (I don't believe so, but it's the kind of thing our foreign policy geniuses do all the time.) But you're an idiot to say it in a debate-- or even an election. I can see the next next ad and it's about giving nucular fuel to the myoolahs....
Fred Barnes on Fox just picked up your "myoolahs" observation, Mike.
Definitely a great summation by Bush. If that's the impression that viewers keep in their minds, he's ahead on this one.
Kerry is a very polished debater, but Bush really came across as sincere at the end.
It's Lubyanka Square, Mr. Kerry. Treblinka was a Nazi death camp in Poland, not the site of KGB HQ.
Kerry just said something that could win the election-- then he threw it away. He started really well about nuclear proliferation, a good scary way for Democrats to be tough without actually being warlike-- then he started going off about our bunker-busting bombs. Note to Democrats-- apart from Noam Chomsky, there really are not very many votes to be had worrying about AMERICAN nukes. The nukes that American voters worry about are FOREIGN nukes. And the words "bunker-busting bombs" tend to conjure up the sort of targets that deserve a nice fat bomb up their asses, like Saddam Hussein. Remember that next time.
Bush is pretty much wiping the floor with Kerry on this North Korea bilateral talks thing. I'm confused now as to which one is supposed to be in favor of big coalitions and which is in favor of going it alone...
Am I the only one who hears Kerry say "200 billion dollars" and I don't know if it really is supposed to be THAT much money?
My take: Bush had the better of most arguments. But Kerry came off better personality-wise-- Kerry was pretty much on and under control, Bush veered between being strongly animated and being stammering and halted. I think the press will jump on a big Kerry victory. Oh wait, we already knew that.
Thanks for letting me live-blog on your blog, Tim. It wasn't my intention to be the main commenter so far, what, is it a different time of day in Australia or something? (I'm sure in the morning it'll be a different story...)
Isn't it Dzerzhinsky (Sp?) square, where Lubianka prison is (and KGB HQ?) Either way Kerry looks like a know-it-all who knows f-all.
The North Korea stuff is really interesting. Bush nailed Kerry on this and demonstrated a pretty solid grasp of the dynamics. So, Kerry, man of international alliances, wants bilateral talks which will undermine the six-party international alliance currently in place. Bush had a nice touch about getting China to leverage the North Koreans. This is a big, brewing issue and Kerry flubbed it nicely.
Did anyone follow the live blogging at Bush's site?
I followed it in real-time, and it was amazing. While Kerry spoke, they dumped the facts. Those guys are on top of things.
"I have never wavered in my life," John Kerry.
You know, this may be the one true thing Kerry has ever said...
He cut and ran on the Mekong.
He cut and ran from Vietnam and his "band of brothers" as soon as he had his three band-aids.
He agitated for this entire country to cut and run from supporting the South Vietnamese.
He cut and ran when the Filipina election workers asked him for sanctuary.
And now he wants to cut and run from Iraq. You do not talk about finishing the job and then set deadlines to leave.
Any "ally" who would trust a commitment of support from a Kerry administration would have to be suicidal.
Anybody notice how "balanced" Jim Lehrer's questions to the candidates were? How he asked about Kerry's 20-year Senate record on foreign policy, the military and intell almost not at all, or not at all? Or, maybe I missed the doe-eyed moderator putting it to Kerry. I had to leave the room for a question or two because Kerry's voluminous hair was making me swoon so--
I'm only watching the highlights. Kerry's highlights, I mean.
There's an old military toast, "Confusion to our enemies."
Tactically, that might be a good idea.
But on one level, we want our enemies to be absolutely clear.
Absolutely. We're all safer that way.
You will recall after the Gulf War, April Glaspie was hammered for not being sufficiently clear to SH.
It appears that did not count much toward the war's beginning, but many people at the time thought it did. Many people said that if it had been clearer, SH would have stayed home. Probably not. He had other things on his mind.
But the point is that there is much to be said for not leaving your enemy in any doubt.
Before the Korean War, Dean Acheson is said to have commented that Korea was not in our sphere of interest. Not much later, the North Koreans observed that he may have not been as clear as he could have been.
Words have consequences, and free-association mumblings according to one's audience can, quite literally, get people killed. In large numbers.
The silvery highlights in Kerry's coiffed and poofed do were hynotizing. But they also gave AlGoreRedApple cheeks to Kerry. Why do Dem candidates need to have cheekbones like Giselle?
Bush made a good point about how Kerry couldn't acquit Iraq with victory and get "better cooperation" from allies after he has announced to the world that this is the wrong war at the wrong time and wrong place and after insulting the strong allies who are standing by us.
At least, Kerry shouldn't have said the Iraq War should have been fought in Iceland in the 22nd century. Didn't resonate with me, at any rate.
Chuck - if it ever was, it's not any more. It's Lubyanka Square, Lubyanka prison (Not to mention Big Lubyanka Street and Little Lubyanka street sprouting off of it; it's a very easy neighborhood to get confused in). There used to be a big heroic statue of Feliks Dzherzhinskii on a grass mound in the middle of the square, but that was pulled down around 1991, for obvious reasons. (Note that the last time I was actually in this square was 2000; there is a slight chance that in some wave of misguided nostalgia, that ugly mug has been put up again).
Oops, I forgot. Still fighting the last war. When you change names to cleanse whole cities, surely mere squares named after bloodthirsty maniacs would also change.
Of course the online poll at the SMH has 67% of people thinking Kerry won...
And they are good judges - Kerry won clearly.
To hell with who won or didn't (it was likely a tie, aristocratic stylings vs. cowboy substance) - the top moment for me came when I saw Update III - "that bridge Teresa lives under is really cool".
I can always replace the keyboard if the coffee has done permanent damage.
Richard McEnroe, George W. Bush cut and ran from even the possibility that he might be sent to Vietnam. What a coward compared to Kerry.
In the little bit of the debate that I heard, both sides did well.
Actually Jean-Luc, it seems Bush volunteered for Vietnam, but wasn't needed.
Kerry's orange face turned to an acceptable brown.Apart from that he seemed to be oppositional, contrary and whiny.What I got out of his message was; Bush made a big mess in Iraq, let Osama escape and
he needs to get a bunch of countries to help , so America can spend more money on themselves and not the war.
Very funny, Quentin. The National Guard was a well-known way to avoid serving in Vietnam.
None of this should mean all that much now, but I find despicable the cowardly slimeball efforts of the Republicans to try to negate the fact that Bush avoided serving whereas Kerry served his country in war.
Kerry forgot to mention Poland, wow, he sucks. Did Bush forgot to mention any countries?
Oh yeah, just Australia.
Jean-Luc Bidet . . . . c'mon, you're shitting me, aren't you. A frenchman named after a device that squirts water up your arse. If frenchmen are so concerned about how clean their arses are, maybe they should wash the rest of their bodies.
Are you not aware that Kerry tried getting a student deferment for studying in Paris? And when that was turned down he joined the Navy Reserves, and not the Navy? Don't you know that, by his own admission years ago, Kerry asked for the least dangerous Nam duty when his unit had to go? Of course you know that Kerry put in for and received three Purple Hearts for "wounds" that did not require hospitalization and which he used to leave Nam early after only four months? No one knows of any other serving soldier or seaman with a similar scratch-and-leave record.
You must be under the wrong impression that Kerry joined up for active duty and not realize how similarly the Reserves and National Guard components work in wartime. Bush flew dangerous planes, too. But the cowardly slimeball efforts of those Republicans have probably disgusted you too much to see any merit to Bush's Air National Guard service. But what I don't get is how in the --------world is Kerry's or Bush's Nam service relevant to this election and how your slam on Bush in the NG relates to the discussion of the debate?
On the myu-lah thing, it's an old family trick. Bush the Elder used to refer to Sa-damn. CNN says Kerry won, so I guess that clinches it for Bush.
Nice try, Jean-Luc, but tell that to the Air National Guardsmen who were deployed to Vietnam as part of their normal service during the year. Quite a large number, both in squadrons and individually.
Say that to the National Guards units that were activated and sent to Vietnam (After Tet especially.). Mostly support unitx, but some combat outfits made it in-country. And some suffer fairly significant losses.
Maybe we should blame the Johnson Administration for refusing to call-up the National Guards (Partly because of the hue and cry people like you would have had, and partly because our strategic reserves in the regular forces were stripped so bare that the NG would have been the first reinforcements to Europe in case Big Mistake #3 broke out.).
I find it amusing that most of the folks who defended Bill Clinton's active avoidance of military service apparently now find Bush's situation (Which are not comparable.) a problem for a person in the Presidency.
joining the navy wasn't exactly the quickest way to go to 'nam, especially if you aimed for the blue water navy.
I'm with c - I don't think it matters.
However, I am disgusted that Kerry makes himself out to be a hero when (as I understand it) he took the first opportunity that he could to cut short his 'tour', leaving those less fortunate there - not to mention the fact that he promptly told everybody back home that the troops were all rapists and murderers, and the Viet Cong were terribly nice really.
Let the whole thing drop - I am more interested in what Kerry has done in the last 4-6 years.
C, read my post; I stated that none of this matters much now, so I agree with you on that point. What pisses me off are the cynical efforts of the Republican side to denigrate Kerry's war record only because their own candidate has no such record at all. Especially when they attacked Clinton for avoiding service. (Funny too how they attacked Clinton for once trying marijuana, but conveniently ignore Bush's past use of cocaine!)
Jean-Luc, the fact that you believe Bush used cocaine confirms beyond all doubt exactly where you are getting your information and the quality of your sources....
C.T., when asked about this, Bush simply replied something to the effect that he refused to comment on what he may have done "as a child."
I certainly don't condemn Bush for once using cocaine. But I do condemn the hypocrisy of those who express outrage over Clinton's past marijuana use but simply ignore Bush's past.
C.T., would it bother you to learn that Bush once used cocaine? If so, why?
P.S. Here's a good source for you, C.T.:
Of course, as a Frenchman I just use my bidet to clean my sinuses after a coke binge.
Did you get the point that Kerry signed up for the Reserves, which is quite similar to Bush going into the National Guard? The only difference is that Kerry's unit was called up and Bush's wasn't. People can have opinions as to whether Kerry's or Bush's service was more valiant and responsible. But you might want to jump off that high horse about Republican smears. Democrats have been going after Bush on some peculiar TANG tangent for quite a few years and haven't been proved anything remotely interesting, relevant, or true.
Kerry's post Nam time, though, is relevant in many ways, especially since he has not repudiated his damning hearsay heard 'round the world about his fellow GIs, nor regretted his meetings with our enemy in Paris. His Nam anti-war and anti-military activism is relevant because he parlayed it into a political career characterized by trusting America's enemies more than our own government. Kerry was soft on the Viet Cong, soft on the Soviet Empire, sweet on the Sandinistas, soft on Hussein in the first Gulf War and recently, and today is too sweet on countries, international institutions and treaties that would hinder and hobble our efforts. Just as Kerry cannot help alluding to his Nam service at the drop of a magical cap, he apparently can't help being as defeatist in the Iraq War as he was in his Nam protest glory days. Kerry's memories may not have been, but a certain ideology was seared, seared in his brain on account of his Nam service, and it shows to this day.
Screw all this preceding extraneous bullshit -- what exactly does Kerry plan to do about the impending mine-shaft gap??!!
George W. Bush volunteered for the ANG, which involved flying planes that killed pilots at the same rate as the average casualty rate for Army draftees in Vietnam. He then volunteered for Operation Palace Alert, which sent National Guard pilots to Vietnam. However, since he only had 300-odd hours in the air at the time, and they wanted only pilots with over 500, he was refused
On the other hand, Kerry never volunteered for combat duty in Vietnam. He asked for deferments, and after his last was refused, he joined the Naval Reserve, which overall was safer than the Air National Guard. He then volunteered to patrol the coastal waters off the shore in a war where the other side had no naval assets to fulfill his active-duty requirements. It was just his bad luck that, after his request was put in, the swift boats were moved from the safe green water duties to dangerous brown water duties. Kerry then bailed out only one third of the way through his tour on the three-Purple-Heart rule, a bailing assisted by a Purple Heart issued (according to his own diary) for a wound suffered before he saw combat.
Bush volunteered for combat duty in Vietnam, and fate kept him from it. Kerry tried to avoid Vietname by every means possible, and fate sent him -- and his response was to defraud his way out of it.
Sure, Kerry served. Himslef, first, last, and always.
Jean-Luc - maybe because Bush thought that his private life is, I don't know, should remain as private as possible? Besides, using that statement as a justification is on par with CBS going ahead with the forged documents from Bill Burke to slam Bush because "the White House did not deny they were real." Uh...Okay...
This also means that any accusation of Bush using cocaine (Including that website, whose name alone is a dead-give away. What is next - www.PrescottBushwasaNazi.com?) is, barring real and solid EVIDENCE, a slanderous attack on GW. And that is what I find unacceptable.
Apparently, so do a great many people, judging from the fact that the last book that made that accusation against Bush (As oppose to other accusations against Bush.) got pulled by its publisher.
"a certain ideology was seared, seared in his brain on account of his Nam service, and it shows to this day."
Perhaps for good reason, c. I have friends who served in Nam and they share a similar ideology.
LOL C.T.!!!! Indeed, "maybe because Bush thought that his private life is, I don't know, should remain as private as possible?" Right on, like Clinton and Lewinsky! Whose side were you on in that one, anyway? The Republican-Taliban fascists or individual freedom and privacy?
I'm voting for Kerry because I DON'T WANT THE GODDAM AMERICAN TALIBAN IN POWER ANY LONGER! You see, I'm a REAL conservative, not a Taliban fellow traveller like the Christian Coalition and its devout disciple in Jaesus, George W.
Gosh what a terrible accusation it was, too - "he used cocaine!" Omigod, I'm, like, totally scandalized. Like, gosh, President Clinton got sucked off by Monica!! Omigod; Jesus save us all!
Where are the libertarians that say they inhabit this site anyway?
I think you should repent right now Bidet before it's to late.
On cocaine apparently in London all paper legal tender has traces of cocaine.My dilemma is how to extract it into useable quantities.
"Spleenville.com. Driving Jean-Luc from Snide to shrieking insanity in four hours or less."
Pretty good example of letting partisanship get in the way of reality there tim. Even the people at NRO are calling it a draw for bush at best, Drudge seems to be trying spin for a draw, the centrist pundits (Sullivan, Kaus, Drezner etc) are leaning to Kerry, even John Friggin Derbyshire isnt claiming it for Bush like you are.
Bidet, quit trolling, or I'll ban you.
By the way, Tom, if you don't like Tim's opinion, too bad, so sad. Get your own blog and complain there.
"Of course the people don't want war. But after all, it's the leaders of the country who determine the policy, and it's always a simple matter to drag the people along whether it's a democracy, a fascist dictatorship, or a parliament, or a communist dictatorship. Voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked, and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism, and exposing the country to greater danger."
-- Herman Goering at the Nuremberg trials
Oh, and is it the case that Bush Campaign workers wrote Allawi's speech to Congress recently? Surely not...
Andreas getting a little ban-happy I notice. I think someone needs to get over themselves....
Suppose its what happen s when a mediocre blogger get admin status on a good blog.
Andrea I have only asked this once before but ban tom, it is friday night and I am done with upstart arsehats.
& bye the bye I am happy that you got through the recent inclement weather. Hope the move goes well.
Okay, Tom is banned! Now he can go whine to all his whiny friends about how a "mediocre" blogger banned his superior self.
If it weren't for Britain's decision to declare war on Germany, Herman wouldn't have been on trial.
Kerry Stops The Bleeding
Flash polls are showing that viewers thought that Kerry won Thursday night’s debate by almost a 2 to 1 margin. CBS showed 44 percent for Kerry, 26 percent for Bush, and 30 percent said it was a tie. ABC showed 45 percent for Kerry, 36 percent for Bush and 17 percent said it was a tie.
This is much need good news for the Kerry campaign. Going in to this week polls showed Bush with a 5 to 10 point lead over Kerry. Kerry was also having trouble in the battle ground states. Electoral College projections were predicting Bush victories in key states including Wisconsin, Florida, Iowa, and Pennsylvania. Bush was even competitive in traditional Democrat strong holds like Michigan, Maryland, and New Jersey.
Ol' John doesn't do so well without Teddy's hand stuffed up his bum, does he? Sometimes I wish these mooks would actually say what they mean, don't you?
Looks like the make-up folks managed to get Senator Amber Alert's face under control, though.
I actually heard one analyst/asshole say that Kerry "looks like he deserves to be CinC"...
Uh, I don't think there's an actual entitlement involved there, y'know? Maybe "looks like he could handle being CinC" would be more circumspect...
"Where are the libertarians that say they inhabit this site anyway?"
Right here. And while I have no use for Christian fundamentalists, I recognize that the notion they are the equivalent of the Taliban is irrational and absurd.
Give this one to Kerry. This was his coming-out party to the Ignorant Undecideds. All he had to do was not reveal himself for the asshole he is. Remember, these debates are aimed at the politically unsophisticated, so any rational and informed analysis, especially that which is based on actual knowledge of the candidates and issues, is moot.
I would disagree on claims that Kerry "won". There was really only one reason for Kerry to show up and that was to resolve the claim that he had multiple positions on Iraq. Instead he contradicted himself on Iraq not merely between last night's debate and previous comments but within minutes in the debate itself. Kerry may have put on a polished show but there was only one reason for him to be there and he failed.
You see, I'm a REAL conservative
No, you're not. You're just a reactionary (to use Roger Simon's apt description), and apparently also a good little postmodernist, what with your nonsensical equating of devout Christians with the Taliban. I'm as secular and un-believing as they come, but I'd take the average practicing Christian as a friend over shrieking atheists/agnostics like you any day of the week.
Anyway, John Nowak nailed it - that truly was quite a fast and impressive flameout.
Hey! No fair!
Sure, many atheists are as arrogant, defensive, overbearing and shit-certain as the worst Jeebus-freaks. But us agnostics don't shriek, we shrug.
God? Eh. I dunno. Whatever.
In Kansas we know what bulls***t is and what's it worth, and who our friends are, and we appreciate you. Thanks, Australia. You're awesome and Howard's the man.
It wasn't nonsensical, PW. The two have a heck of a lot in common. They differ more in degree than in sentiment, and to that extent I too would rather associate with Christian fundies than Islamic ones (who would just want to kill me). But I don't want to see either in power anywhere in the world. This is the 21st century, mate!
I'm for Howard in Oz and Kerry in the US. Lucky me, I get to vote in both elections.
Oh, unlucky us/US, then. What Jean-Luc doesn't know is that Bush is not a fundamentalist, but Kerry is a fundamental and colossal fool.
But us agnostics don't shriek, we shrug.
God? Eh. I dunno. Whatever.
Heh, could be. That's certainly my reaction (being agnostic myself) whenever the subject of any non-violent religion comes up. I do know sensible atheists, but as with many groups, they're often drowned out by the loud ones.
But I don't want to see either in power anywhere in the world.
I don't want to see either of them in power, either. But, please - get some damn perspective. Christian fundamentalists in America aren't blowing up children with carbombs, they're (gasp!) trying to win at the ballot box. Where they're roundly defeated in most areas and certainly nation-wide, your unsupported claims that Bush is One Of Them notwithstanding.
Considering that Bush gets it from all sides ("Neocon puppet!", "Fundamentalist!", "Big Government RINO!" etc. etc.), I've been forced to conclude that he's probably a fairly normal right-of-center moderate, as far as the sum of his politics is concerned. Pigeonhole him at your peril. (As the Dems have done, to their detriment.)
Did Fox run a poll?
My guess is that Bush would have one there.How many republicans would be watching CBS or CNN anyway.
When I elect a LEADER- I don't give a rats --- how articulate he is just as long he can inspire the men he has to lead- and has shown he means bloody business- Kerry will talk us into a red sky oblivion and still those hands and long and languid face will be SEARED INTO MY FINAL MOMENTS
I don't want a school boy prima donna playing Larry Olivier playing Dear Brutus or perhaps Hamlet.
DEAR GOD DELIVER US FROM FOUR YEARS AND THE DAMAGE KERRY WILL DO TO THE WORLD'
If the socialist get in in American, and Australia ALL the major players on the world stage will be from the LEFT- BE WARNED THIS IS NO JOKE