July 28, 2006

Off His Meds

Behold the unhinged.

Posted by Michael J. Totten at July 28, 2006 12:24 PM

Oh bloody hell, Michael, you should have warned us about the ALL CAPS NATURE OF THE RANT!!!!! My eyes! My eyes!

Posted by: Whomever at July 28, 2006 12:34 PM


Hmmm, now that is a thought provoking question, indeed. Now I grant you, it is one that I had never before considered, but I put that down to my lack of awareness.

Fortunately for all of us there are some out there in 'virtual-land that are not afraid to ask the hard questions.

Answer that if you dare, MJT. He even has google to back him up. Inquiring minds want to know !!!

I must say hawever that the ALL CAPS bit was rather offputting. Like someone sreaming at me on the streetcorner, and no cop in sight.

Posted by: dougf at July 28, 2006 12:35 PM

Well, at least he didn't blow your real cover as a secret oprative for the Bavarian Illuminati!


Posted by: Ratatosk at July 28, 2006 12:37 PM

Let this serve as a reminder to all that there are extremists and lunactics on all sides.

Posted by: Bad Vilbel at July 28, 2006 12:37 PM

It's the empty swimming pools, mike. Belmont's blog is better. And, more educational. Given that you don't need the unhinged to know there's a problem in Beirut. And, it isn't the Hezbollah's stuff that got bombed. Their lost network. But all those empty pools. When the $4.5 billion dollar tourist industry lost its customers.

So, don't call a carpenter to fix the hinges. Look, instead, at the damage done in Lebanon. While, I'll guess the tourism business in Israel will not go POOF. And, at Ben Gurion airport, the staff is not incompetent.

Sure. you're angry. And, I understand.

Anyway, posters. And, banning posters. And, other such stuff as you're free to do, won't touch the problems created by Nasrallah. He was a cancer allowed to grow for six years. While you thought the Israelis were too weak to stop him. Nope. He got his protection from Blue Hats. And, money from people you consider friends.

I think the citizens of the world are mostly patient. And, they're patient, now, with the citizens of Iraq. I don't think the choices ahead will favor the mad, mad, men. Empty swimming pools. Instead of the dreck shown on TV. Will be what grabs attention, later.

Posted by: Carol Herman at July 28, 2006 12:43 PM

Has this guy ever actually read your blog?

Posted by: Kat at July 28, 2006 12:44 PM

Anti-Semite, my bleeeeep! If Michael Totten was running Lebanon, Tel Aviv and Beirut would be a free trade zone. Israel could only hope to be so lucky as to have adversaries like him...

Posted by: josh at July 28, 2006 12:44 PM

I wish all antisemites were like Micahel Totten. I could live in peace.

Posted by: Marty at July 28, 2006 12:53 PM

Michael, there are plenty of Conservative, pro-Israel Jews such as myself who read your website regularly. I appreciate your writing and insight, regardless of whether or not I agree with your opinions. That guy is a kook.

Posted by: Randy at July 28, 2006 01:42 PM

Well, sigh, instead of just making tired comments about the blogger being off his meds, how 'bout some patiently worded answers in rebuttal? There are probably lurkers at this blog, and these questions may seem reasonable to them.

Posted by: Renée C. at July 28, 2006 01:45 PM

Michael, I am assuming that he has only recently begun to read your wonderful blog. We all know that extremists of any kind, are dangerous and irrational.

Please don't legitimize him with a response.

Posted by: Brooklyn at July 28, 2006 01:51 PM

Renee: how 'bout some patiently worded answers in rebuttal?

Why no Star of David on my Web site? Ask Charles Johnson at Little Green Footballs. He designed it. I'm sure he will be amused at the anti-Semitism charge.

Oh, and I called for Hezbollah's disarmament in a Los Angeles newspaper. Does that count, or am I required to do it today on my blog to avoid being branded a racist?

Posted by: Michael J. Totten at July 28, 2006 02:03 PM


Various rebuttals were posted in the comments section on this blog here, over the past few days.

Posted by: Bad Vilbel at July 28, 2006 02:03 PM

Oh, and why do I use the term "Inshallah?" For the exact same reason Lebanon's Christian community uses it. It's a commonly used phrase in the country they live in, and in the country I lived in myself for a while.

No, I am not a Muslim or a wannabe Muslim.

Any other dumb questions I should answer?

Posted by: Michael J. Totten at July 28, 2006 02:05 PM

One last thing. The overwhelming majority of Sunni Muslims in Iraqi Kurdistan are staunch supporters of Israel. The idea that I am trying to appease them by sticking up for the anti-Hezbollah Lebanese majority is retarded.

Posted by: Michael J. Totten at July 28, 2006 02:08 PM

Waaaaaaah, Waaaaaah,Waaaaah. Why is it that some people assume that MJT has some kind of obligation to allow ridiculous nonsense in his comments section. I wouldn't let this guy carry on like that in my home, so why on should MJT on this blog? Putting this freak and a few others in time out was EXACTLY what they needed, and if this guy wants to retreat to his own 'blog' to kick rocks and pout, FINE! I'm sure he has a few fans to prop up his tender little ego. I don't see comments numbering in the hundreds on any of his posts. Certainly not of the caliber of the vast majority of the comments on this blog. And, BTW: since when does the ability to HAVE a blog mean that it is in any way accurate or worth while? MJT has EARNED the respect of his readers. I saw this guy refered to as "for real" in a previous thread. He's really something anyway.
end of rant.

MJT: If you don't email me about getting coffee soon I'm going to start taking it personally! Sean E-d me from Istanbul, you're just down the street for heavens sake! ;)


Posted by: Lindsey at July 28, 2006 02:09 PM


Not that I have the power to do this, but if I did, I would apologize for that freakshow on behalf of all semites.

Can't believe you, of all people, have to put up with something like that.

What a dick.

Posted by: SoCalJustice at July 28, 2006 02:11 PM

The nut calls himself 'Astute Blogger'. Astute indeed ;-)

Posted by: Bruno Mota at July 28, 2006 02:14 PM

I guess he missed the Israel series you did awhile back? Your series of posts about Kurdistan blew my coworkers minds at work. They had trouble understanding that part of Iraq wasn't a mess.

Posted by: Dawnsblood at July 28, 2006 02:33 PM

Not off his meds, off his rocker.

But then again, not much different than most of the posts at LGF either.

It's like some kind of weird "Waltons eat their young" episode ya know?

Posted by: Davebo at July 28, 2006 02:37 PM

not much different than most of the posts at LGF either.

Hence my mention of Charles Johnson above. Love the irony.

Posted by: Michael J. Totten at July 28, 2006 02:45 PM

Any other dumb questions I should answer?

Actually, there is one. What is the airspeed velocity of a unladen swallow? :)

Posted by: SirGlubb at July 28, 2006 02:49 PM

Who is this "Michael C. Totten"?

Posted by: Asher Abrams - Dreams Into Lightning at July 28, 2006 02:50 PM

African or European?

Posted by: Michael J. Totten at July 28, 2006 03:03 PM

I do agree that the "astuteblogger" does come across like a nutbar (now with extra nuts!). But, MJT, as a person who has never commented on your site before, I have to admit dismay. Not at your biases - that's fine, we all have them, I agree with some and disagree with others. My dismay is about a thread of deep denial of reality on your part that I sense, a failure to recognize the facts for what they are - reminiscent of the orwellian world of zmag , indymedia, etc..., where facts are twisted to support an ideology - and everything I thought you stood against with your clear thinking writing. This is just a sense - MJT, you clearly try to be "balanced." And I am probably a bit paranoid. But I can't pretend I don't feel this way, and this feeling might motivate the psycho "astute blogger's" emotional post. I apologize if I offend anyone with this post, particularly MJT, whose site is thoroughly fascinating.

Posted by: Just a girdle at July 28, 2006 03:25 PM

Michael, don't sweat it, they guy is obviously a nut.

Posted by: Nadim at July 28, 2006 03:34 PM

Ooh, I love it! A new use of an old word.

Astute = my caps key is stuck and I can't shut up.

This guy and the nutbar that the U. of Wisconsin hired to teach his students that George Bush brought down the Twin Towers are two peas in a pod...

Thanks for all the great insight over the past years, Michael. It's hell to live in interesting times.

Posted by: mezzrow at July 28, 2006 04:00 PM

African or European?

Huh? I-- I don't know that. Auuuuuuuugh! :)

Posted by: SirGlubb at July 28, 2006 04:21 PM

And I am probably a bit paranoid.

you said it, he didn't :)

Posted by: razib at July 28, 2006 04:35 PM

btw, i am still not totally convinced that this isn't a joke, or, perhaps even an attempt to make jews look bad by fleshing out the full caricature of unhinged paranoia. howz that for recursive inversion?

Posted by: razib at July 28, 2006 04:43 PM

His Google search is for a "Michael C Totten". So no worries, MJT, he wasn't even talking about you! Whew! That's alright then.

Posted by: ZM at July 28, 2006 05:18 PM

google search for michael c. totten.

Posted by: razib at July 28, 2006 05:27 PM

If you put quotes on that search the last item #5 is Astute Blogger.

Posted by: Freedom Now at July 28, 2006 05:52 PM

As somebody who just spent most waking hours for three of the last four weeks with Michael J. Totten, allow me to assure you that he is not anti-semitic. He is also not a follower of Allah, or a Yezhidi for that matter. (We were at the temple together and I caught him stepping on a threshold...the horrors.)

Michael has good cause to question Israeli border security at Ben Gurion and so do I. The Mossad and military security were quite competant, but the passport folks are either elaborate set dressing or a bureaucratic inevitablity. Occam's Razor implies that they just aren't very good at determining real threats and they aren't held accountable for that lapse. Maybe they are just stalls while real security checks you out, but sitting for five hours with Michael without nicotine is not going to be my favorite memory of the trip and I hold it against them.

Posted by: Patrick S Lasswell at July 28, 2006 06:18 PM

Michael, you banned Ass-Toot Blogger? How could you? You fascist!

Posted by: Asher Abrams - Dreams Into Lightning at July 28, 2006 06:26 PM

Carol Herman: [Hassan Nasrallah] got money from people you consider friends.

You are finally banned. No more comments from you.

Posted by: Michael J. Totten at July 28, 2006 06:51 PM

Whoa! Sorry if my comments got folks upset. Since Michael featured that guy's rantings on his blog (and not in the comments) for the sake of any new lurkers I just wanted to make a suggestion that it might be the right thing to do to answer the guys attacks in a "cool, concise" fashion in return, and THEN let the comments begin. Sorry if my suggestion was poorly worded. :-(

I know Michael is a great guy, but I always have a tendancy to think about newbies for some reason. I just always do, don't know why. Again, sorry.

Posted by: Renée C. at July 28, 2006 07:23 PM

No problem, Renee. :)

Posted by: Michael J. Totten at July 28, 2006 07:49 PM

I need a de-rant browser plugin that punctuations and capitalizes nearly English sentences before I'm going to attempt to read that.

Does Babel-fish have a psychotic-to-English translator?

Posted by: Josh Scholar at July 29, 2006 03:45 AM

One last thing. The overwhelming majority of Sunni Muslims in Iraqi Kurdistan are staunch supporters of Israel.

That's really interesting Michael. Would love to hear more about this in future.

Posted by: Dirk at July 29, 2006 03:46 AM

Microsoft Word does have the ability to capitalize properly.

A capitalization, and spelling/grammar check later, it's easy to read, but not worth reading I'm afraid.

Posted by: Josh Scholar at July 29, 2006 04:03 AM

It's unfortunate that you felt you needed to waste your valuable time dignifying that lunacy with a response. The guy is an embarrassment.

Posted by: Stephenl at July 29, 2006 06:58 AM

Michael is that most dangerous of all things, 'almost reasonable'. Fortunately, that does not include living in Politically Correct land, where all symbols live together, and we hug and sing kumbaya in each other's places of worship (and hate each other in the privacy of our own homes).

For what it's worth, having read Michael for a while, this Jew says he's ok.

Posted by: Akiva at July 29, 2006 07:38 PM


As someone to the left of your blog, even while appreciating its beyond-argument graphic realism and geuninely informed perspective -

I'm glad to see that you don't cowtow to jerks like the astute blogger. Every country has people, and not a small amount of them, that would be glad to support a local version of Hizballah. In industrial countries the support is channeled into the nation's military, but the emotional tenor is the same.

America's system is (mostly) not controlled by people like Astute Blogger - but if it was, we'd be no better than most of the people in the world we oppose. So I believe.

Posted by: glasnost at July 29, 2006 09:24 PM




ahhhh. . . much better.

Bonus sub-post: made up trivia! -- The Innuit word "tute", when translated to Kikongo, is "shole".

Posted by: emcee fleshy at July 31, 2006 08:59 PM
Winner, The 2007 Weblog Awards, Best Middle East or Africa Blog

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