Sarah Palin


Don’t say I didn’t warn you about Trump

Just bumping the content of a couple of posts from earlier this year, and pointing you all at Sounds of Soldiers again. Sounds of Soldiers is currently an incredible bargain at $0.99/£0.99/local equivalent. But, if you want an even better bargain, pick up Britain Looks To The Future (also just $0.99/£0.99/local equivalent), which includes it and eight other great tales by independent British authors.

I did this interview for The Daily Rundown last month in May, and only just worked out where to find it. It’s a little segment on the inspiration for Sounds of Soldiers, and why it’s still relevant- maybe even more relevant- in the age of Trump.

SoundsofSoldiers-cover_thumbI started work on Sounds of Soldiers in November 2008.

Luckily, the premise genuinely was fiction within a few days of starting the project, as Obama was elected US President, rather than McCain. Thus the (implied but not stated outright) backstory for the book- that Sarah Palin rose to commander-in-chief and started a stupid war with Europe- genuinely was fiction. For the next eight years, anyway.

Now, the USA is, once again, teasing us with the potential has delivered the setup for thousands of dystopian novels, in the shape of Donald Trump. Trump’s far scarier than Palin ever was. She’s stupid and incompetent, but he takes those two traits and piles bullying, vindictive, (more) racist, and thin skinned into the mix. If anyone had written President Trump (or even potential-presidential-candidate Trump) before this year, people would have said the character wasn’t believable.

If anything, Sounds of Soldiers is an optimistic read in a world where “The Donald” could be leader of the free world. A Trump inspired future would look a hell of a lot more like Mad Max.


My week in tweets

Not all the tweets. I’ll leave out the automated posts, most of the promo tweets, and the argument with the guy who blamed everything on immigrants and sharia law, but got offended when I told him he was being racist.


In these Trumped up times, you need to buy Sounds of Soldiers for 99p

SoundsofSoldiers-cover_thumbI’ve reduced the price of Sounds of Soldiers as it’s so appropriate to current politics. It is now available for 99c/99p/the local equivalent.

Amazon

Smashwords

Five years ago the United States began to self destruct. As momentum toward a nuclear civil war grew at home, US covert kill teams- and then the military- rampaged through Europe attacking imaginary enemies. The USA found itself at war with former allies. Great Britain closed its borders and stayed mostly neutral.

Robert Jones didn’t get on the train out of Paris after it was bombed. He chose to stay on the continent and make a name for himself covering the conflict with reports on his blog. He saw the first blows, witnessed nuclear explosions lighting up the Mediterranean and was present for the final acts.

Now the borders have been reopened and Robert Jones is back from the war. He has returned to Manchester to reconnect with friends and family, to investigate the changes the city has gone through and to find out what life was like away from the warzone. He’s striving for a new, peaceful life, but there are still some ghosts and secrets from his time on the continent which are ready to come back and shake it up.

A novella about what happens when a technothriller goes horribly wrong, Sounds of Soldiers is part travelogue from the future, part war story satire, and takes a look at how the civilians usually ignored by the big war fantasies cope and survive.


Want to know what happens if Trump wins? I already wrote that book

SoundsofSoldiers-cover_thumbI started work on Sounds of Soldiers in November 2008.

Luckily, the premise genuinely was fiction within a few days of starting the project, as Obama was elected US President, rather than McCain. Thus the (implied but not stated outright) backstory for the book- that Sarah Palin rose to commander-in-chief and started a stupid war with Europe- genuinely was fiction. For the next eight years, anyway.

Now, the USA is, once again, teasing us with the potential setup for thousands of dystopian novels, in the shape of Donald Trump. Trump’s far scarier than Palin ever was. She’s stupid and incompetent, but he takes those two traits and piles bullying, vindictive, (more) racist, and thin skinned into the mix. If anyone had written President Trump (or even potential-presidential-candidate Trump) before this year, people would have said the character wasn’t believable.

If anything, Sounds of Soldiers is an optimistic read in a world where “The Donald” could be leader of the free world. A Trump inspired future would look a hell of a lot more like Mad Max.


Michelle Bachmann is making Sounds of Soldiers relevant again

I started writing Sounds of Soldiers on November 1st 2008. It’s a near future travelogue satire on the presumptions and world view of technothrillers which takes place, mostly, after a big dumb war. Given when I started it, I always saw it as what could happen if “the wrong people” won the US elections.

Thankfully Obama won. His presidency may be turning out a huge disappointment, but just imagine how much worse it would have been if McCain/Palin had won. The simplified back story of Sounds of Soldiers was that McCain keeled over after a couple of years in one of the most stressful jobs in the world, Palin took over and the stupid just cascaded from there until the Americans were bombing their European allies and ordering their soldiers to run amok across the continent. This is mostly alluded to, but there is at least one mention of “the mad woman” taking over.

The mad woman was Palin, of course, but now Michelle Bachmann has come along as the Tea Party’s preferred Republican candidate and she may be even more scary. So Sounds of Soldiers is relevant again (well, Palin never went away, I guess Bachmann makes it more relevant).

Sounds of Soldiers is available from

Amazon UK
Amazon US
Amazon DE
Smashwords
In print from Lulu


Sarah Palin wants to sue the internet

Sarah Palin resigned as governor of Alaska on Friday. So news organisations and bloggers have been speculating about her reasons. The mad woman has tweeted a few comments about getting the truth out to the American people and had her lawyer send out threats to anyone she thinks will say things she doesn’t want heard.

This is the woman some fools want to run for President of the USA in 2012. (She’s also the inspiration for the big war in Sounds Of Soldiers. I imagined a world where McCain won last year’s election then died, leaving a scary, incoherent, ignorant woman in charge of the most powerful military in the world.)


Sarah Palin talks to Nicolas Sarkozy

I doubt these two are going to lose their jobs over this prank call. Canadian comedians Marc-Antoine Audette and Sebastien Trudel managed to get through the campaign call screening and convince Sarah Palin she’s talking to Nicolas Sarkozy. Not hilarious, but definitely amusing as the would be Vice President misses load of hints that she’s being wound up. I bet the right wing blogosphere are up in arms about it.


Another right wing fantasy- is Barack Obama really American?

This latest fantasy has two prongs. On the one hand they believe there’s some deep dark secret about Obama’s birth certificate, which will prove that the front runner for the presidency is somehow not of the USA. I read a post last night where one of the idiots, accepting defeat, decided that there should be hundreds of private lawsuits filed after Obama’s elected, every one arguing his legitimacy. Whatever.

The other prong is a string of comments, from Sarah Palin on down, painting anyone who doesn’t vote Republican as unAmerican. I wonder where that phrase has been used before?

Update I found this, from one of Obama’s speeches. It seems appropriate-

And Spinneyhead is having one of its busiest days in a while, courtesy of pervs looking for naked pictures of Obama’s mother. Seriously guys, go register with Domai– full colour, high resolution, gorgeous and politically neutral- you’ll thank me.

The guy at Stop the ACLU who posted the version of the dumb rumour that I first found is defending it (yes, they’re off the naughty step for the time being). It’s all very convoluted, but I think he’s saying that because it’s even more baseless than the rumour about Palin faking her pregnancy he has every right to run with it. Elsewhere he’s defended his conspiracy theory because Communism is genetic and Obama’s parents- in his fantasy world- are a “Communist and a slut”. Classy.

Update Fleshbot, long time chroniclers of fake nudes, have looked at the pictures (NSFW, obviously) and are fairly confident they’re not of the woman the conspiracy nuts want them to be of.


John McCain’s supporters roll on into fantasy land

The US elections are like a big, scary soap opera. They’d be more entertaining if they weren’t so important. So far all the best stories have come from, or been generated by, the Republicans.

The polling figures are so poor, and John McCain’s campaign so dire, that the right wing bloggers and commenters have descended to grabbing any fantasy solution that comes near them and holding on tight. Over the weekend I saw reports that Barack Obama was about to be arrested as part of someone else’s corruption scandal, that he had an affair (the details of that one look a lot like one of the plots from the first season of 24, they have a hard time with original thought on the right it would seem) and that he was somehow knee deep in an invented voter registration scandal involving a group called Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now (ACORN).

I’ve done a little research into the ACORN “scandal” and it looks like a smear. The organisation is accused of voter registration fraud (cut down to voter fraud as part of the smear so that it can sound like an attempt to steal the election) because they turned in dubious or duplicate registration forms. ACORN hands over every registration form its workers generate, as they are required to, so if an individual gives them something fraudulent they’d be breaking the law if they discarded it. In fact, ACORN points out that they separate suspicious registrations out and flag them for the electoral commissions to investigate.

Meanwhile, Republican organisations are trying to remove people from the electoral roll. Specifically the sort of people who would be more likely to vote for Obama- the poor, blacks, people who have lost their homes as part of the mortgage meltdown. It’s a familiar story, basically the same methods they’ve used to steal the last two elections.

Meanwhile, Sarah Palin- whose husband was a member of a political party that wanted Alaska to break away from the United States- is accusing Obama of wanting to destroy the country because he worked with a reformed- if unrepentant- former member of the Weather Underground. This has struck such a chord with certain McCain/Palin supporters who prefer not to think that they’ve started parroting “terrorist”, “traitor” etc. at rallies. It’s got so bad that the people who started the name calling are now asking them to shut up and getting booed for it.

Whichever way the election goes it looks more and more like the USA wants to be two countries.

This post was inspired by an article on the Daily Mail website. It’s an expansion upon the comment I left there, which I expect, based upon past experience, won’t be published.


Why does the US election matter so much to a Brit?

British servicemen dead in Iraq.

British servicemen dead in Afghanistan. Whilst I’ll concede that there was a point to invading Afghanistan as part of a campaign to destroy a particular band of terrorists, any chance of success was removed when Bush decided that Iraq was more important.

Violence in Iraq. It’s quite damning that there are no official figures for civilian deaths in Iraq. Even if the true figure is close to the 80,000+ minimum it’s far too high.

The United States is the one country that refused to ratify the Kyoto Protocol, setting back any progress we could hope to make.

A McCain presidency would see a continuation of Bush’s dumb and dangerous policies, on top of which, McCain has said he wants to bomb Iran. Which is obviously going to solve so many problems.

And if McCain were to win, this person would be one unhealthy old man away from the most powerful position in the world-

Vote Obama. That’s all I’m saying.


My prediction for the October Surprise- RIP Track Palin

I mentioned this in the pub last night and said I wouldn’t put it on the blog. Well, like so much else about the McCain campaign for an opportunity to finish wrecking the USA, that turned out to be a lie.

The October Surprise is a US election cliche. From the wikipedia page on the October Surprise

An October surprise is American political jargon describing a news event with the potential to influence the outcome of an election, particularly one for the presidency. It is so called because the presidential elections are held in early November, and therefore events that take place in October have greater potential to swing votes. “Historically, news outlets avoid investigative pieces critical of candidates within days of an election to avoid appearing partisan.” Particularly since the 1980 election, the term has been pre-emptively used to discredit late-campaign news by one side or the other.

The term usually applies to the acts of a sitting president, especially in military or foreign policy matters. But it can also apply to news stories unfavorable to the incumbent administration.

The McCain Wreck is looking worse every day. His popularity is dropping and the Palin bump is going down as more and more people realise how dangerous it would be to give her any sort of responsibility. But a really cynical and evil campaign manager could still use Palin to get a last minute boost.

Palin’s son Track went off to serve in Iraq earlier this month. I can just see someone in the McCain Wreck team wondering how much of a sympathy vote Governor Sarah would get if her eldest son were to be killed in a firefight with “al-Quaida”, and just how they could go about making it happen. “That’ll get the mothers’ vote” they’ll be thinking, “And the warmongers’ vote too!”

I hope that I’m just a bad person for thinking up scenarios like this, but I bet that some in the Republican party are waiting for the martyring of Track Palin because they think it will win them the White House.


Sarah Palin is the sort of feminist who hates women

I know I rarely post this much about British politics, but there’s something gruesomely addictive about the pitch black farce that is this year’s US elections. The Republican candidate for Vice President of the most powerful country in the world is the sort of scum who would allow rape victims to be charged for the tests that might catch and convict their attacker.

Despite denials by the Palin campaign, new evidence proves that as mayor of Wasilla, Alaska, Sarah Palin had a direct hand in imposing fees to pay for post-sexual assault medical exams conducted by the city to gather evidence.

Palin’s role is now confirmed by Wasilla City budget documents available online.

Under Sarah Palin’s administration, Wasilla cut funds that had previously paid for the medical exams and began charging victims or their health insurers the $500 to $1200 fees. Although Palin spokeswoman Maria Comella wrote USA Today earlier this week that the GOP vice presidential nominee “does not believe, nor has she ever believed, that rape victims should have to pay for an evidence-gathering test…To suggest otherwise is a deliberate misrepresentation of her commitment to supporting victims and bringing violent criminals to justice,” Palin, as mayor, fired police chief Irl Stambaugh and replaced him with Charlie Fannon, who with Palin’s knowledge, slashed the budget for the exams and began charging the city’s victims of sexual assault. The city budget documents demonstrate Palin read and signed off on the new budget. A year later, alarmed Alaska lawmakers passed legislation outlawing the practice.

via Feministe


McCain Wreck- Don’t make fun of the Republicans, they’re sensitive souls

So Russell Brand presented an MTV awards ceremony and did a little bit about Bush and Palin-

His delivery, as usual, is piss poor, so it’s not as funny as it could have been. But a few people were horribly, deeply offended by it, including the commenters at the thread I dropped into here, who want foreigners to go away and stop messing in the affairs of other countries. There’s a comment about Americans and irony in there, I just can’t quite remember how it goes……..

Then Obama made a remark in a speech where he repeated the message about the phoniness of the McCain/Palin “change” rhetoric, whilst using a common phase to mock Palin’s asinine description of herself.

And the McCain camp start crying about how he’s being so insulting. If the prospective president and vice president can’t handle it when the other guy has a better way with words, how can they possibly hope to survive in international pollitics?


Yes, that’s right, new-clear. Say nukular and I may have to slap you. 1

It seems the Republicans have been listening to my rants every time Wubble U mispronounces nuclear. From the transcript of Palin’s acceptance speech-

Starting in January, in a McCain-Palin administration, we’re going to lay more pipelines … build more new-clear plants … create jobs with clean coal … and move forward on solar, wind, geothermal, and other alternative sources.

I heard a BBC continuity announcer say nukular the other night. There was some choice language aimed at the television.

[I still don’t think nuclear is any sort of answer- too long to build, far more expensive in the long run than they promise and just another example of governments thinking big when they should just be thinking- but correct pronunciation of the word is a matter of principle.]

via Talking Points Memo


Watching the McCain wreck from a not safe enough distance

Yes, it’s the US elections again. And, just like last time, I’m getting sucked in. Why is a Brit so interested in another country’s elections? Because of the damage the current idiot has inflicted and the danger that his replacement could be as bad or even worse. It’s also a lot like that old cliche about slowing down to stare at a car crash or, as it rhymes with McCain and sounds more like an Americanism, a train wreck.

Even whilst bored of the protracted Democrat primaries I could see that this was going to be a messy and nasty election. I couldn’t have predicted that the first victim of a smear was going to be a Republican.

John McCain announced his running mate at the end of last week- Sarah Palin, the governor of Alaska- and almost immediately all the factors that make her an awful choice were forgotten amid speculation about her family. Conflating some absurd- and some say dangerous and irresponsible- behaviour around the birth of her 5th child earlier this year and what turned out to be the current illegitimate pregnancy of her eldest daughter people started inventing a cover up. Palin, it was alleged, had faked her own pregnancy and claimed her bastard grandson as her own.

It certainly has the melodramatic air of the fifties hypocrisy the candidate would like to see return, but the convenient timing of her real bastard grandchild pretty much kills it. Palin, unfortunately, is an advocate of abstinence only sex education, which has worked wonders with her own family. Wonder if she’ll mention it at all in the campaign?

Ignoring Palin’s family issues it’s obvious she’s a cynical pick to try and appeal to Hilary Clinton supporters and religious fundamentalists at the same time. The Republicans are going to cry about sexism every time her ability and ideology are questioned, despite the fact that she stands against pretty much every advance for women of the last fifty years or so. She has a son who’s off to serve in Iraq, something none of the warmongers in Bush’s gang could claim last time I checked. And she’s one of those frightening “holier than thou” politicians the right wing loves, with membership of a church with links to an armageddon cult.

I’m a little scared. But, if anyone wanted to put me up for a while either side of the election, I’d be all for flying over there with a laptop and writing about it as it happened.

No links in this post, because I could lose the rest of the afternoon digging them out. I promise that next time I rant about the US elections (and I will) I’ll try to include a few links.