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Dead Putting Society
November 8, 2005 11:52 AM   Subscribe

We will act deliberately and decisively, and the cause of freedom will prevail. Now, watch this drive.
posted by 3.2.3 (35 comments total)

 
"This is amazing to me," he says. "I never thought I'd golf in Kabul again."

*head asplodes*
posted by alumshubby at 12:05 PM on November 8, 2005


"I've seen it on TV but not in front of me," says Fahim Daftani, 23. "All I know is, this is a game that rich people play. I don't even know what it's called."

It's called "politics."
posted by Faint of Butt at 12:17 PM on November 8, 2005


OMG someone built a fancy hotel and a golf course!!!

I suppose I'm supposed to be outraged or something? Guess what? According to the links, this was a privately financed buisness venture. It's no different from any other kind of operation that makes widgets, except for the fact that this widget, a form of entertainment rich assholes in the us enjoy, is something which gives us a visceral response. There is in fact nothing to see here. Move along...
posted by pieisexactlythree at 12:25 PM on November 8, 2005


Where in the writeup does the FPP's author either state or imply that you should be outraged?

That part is all up to you.
posted by wakko at 12:33 PM on November 8, 2005


Has the street price of raw opium gone up significantly?
That is the major and only export, isn't it?
I mean, Dubya wouldn't allow a welfare state on his watch, right?
I bet almost every Afghani will be able to afford rooms at this luxury hotel for fun filled weekends and have the money and free time to spend at the golf course. So good to see the common folks there get something nice for a change.
posted by nofundy at 12:33 PM on November 8, 2005


The transformation of Kabul is dramatic as the rest of the country returns to rustic serenity.

Ha ha! Rustic serenity... Ahh, the good old Dark Ages!
posted by c13 at 12:40 PM on November 8, 2005


"Now, watch this drive."
- I think the invocation of a Michael Moore polemic is sufficient to infer some sort of moral condemantion. The fact that this sort of thing is considered a better investment than something with more wide reaching social externalities is discouraging. However, it's perfectly above board from a legal stand point, so what's there to discuss?
posted by pieisexactlythree at 12:43 PM on November 8, 2005


I bet almost every Afghani will be able to afford rooms at this luxury hotel for fun filled weekends and have the money and free time to spend at the golf course. So good to see the common folks there get something nice for a change.

Welcome to Afghanistan: The New South America
posted by Rothko at 12:44 PM on November 8, 2005


Welcome to Afghanistan: The New South America

You needn't look that far afield, Rothko. It's a fact that top tier golf clubs in the US typically charge upwards of 150-200k for a memberships, and according to market research data I've seen, most members have at least two of these memberships. It is not uncommon to charge $850,000 or more for a vacant lot in a 'golf course community.'
posted by pieisexactlythree at 12:50 PM on November 8, 2005


Has the street price of raw opium gone up significantly?

Afghanistan now produces 90 percent of the world's opium:
"We are already a narco-state," says Mohammad Nader Nadery at the Afghan Independent Human Rights Commission, which has studied the growing impunity of former military commanders and drug dealers who now work within the Afghan government. "If the governors in many parts of the country are involved in the drug trade, if a minister is directly or indirectly getting benefits from drug trade, and if a chief of police gets money from drug traffickers, then how else do you define a narco-state?"

Abdul Karim Brahowie, Afghanistan's minister of tribal and frontier affairs, says that the government has become so full of drug smugglers that cabinet meetings have become a farce. "Sometimes the people who complain the loudest about theft are thieves themselves," he says.
posted by kirkaracha at 12:51 PM on November 8, 2005


I can't wait for Polo tourneys in Fallujah.
posted by bardic at 12:52 PM on November 8, 2005


Re. the Kabul hotel, let's hope they pay their taxes, etc. An excise tax on those room rates could build a lot of schools, wells, etc. That is, assuming anybody wants to stay there...
posted by pieisexactlythree at 12:52 PM on November 8, 2005


I think the invocation of a Michael Moore polemic

Polemic? Michael Moore? Try an actual statement of Dubya (as is typical) not caring a damn about the plight of common citizens.
posted by nofundy at 12:58 PM on November 8, 2005


"I call upon all nations to do everything they can to stop these terrorist killers. Thank you. Now watch this drive." [.mov]
posted by kirkaracha at 1:05 PM on November 8, 2005


Making the world safe for the upper class, one heavily guarded fortification at a time.

Tell me, are the blow jobs from serfs complementary, or are they assessed on the tab at the end of your stay?
posted by SweetJesus at 1:07 PM on November 8, 2005


The polemic was the film. The asshat remark was shrub.
posted by pieisexactlythree at 1:07 PM on November 8, 2005


It kinda reminds of the liberals who get all mad that Dubya still goes for runs and bike rides when there's a crisis going on. Too concerned with image, and it hurts their cause by making them look silly.
posted by freebird at 1:09 PM on November 8, 2005


that doesnt really make any sense.
posted by wakko at 1:13 PM on November 8, 2005


Too concerned with image, and it hurts their cause by making them look silly.

Funny, they seem to think it's all about image.

And they're right - It's all about image.
posted by SweetJesus at 1:15 PM on November 8, 2005


Doh, wrong image link.
posted by SweetJesus at 1:16 PM on November 8, 2005


Um, hate to burst your bubble, but Kabul ain't doing well. My friend was working at the U.S. Embassy there for the last three months. She was almost killed by an IED. The compound was often hit by poorly-aimed rockets. Out in the provinces, the security situation was decaying. Hotels or no hotels it wasn't good.
posted by Ironmouth at 1:37 PM on November 8, 2005


The opium producers needed something to do with their fortune.
posted by j-urb at 1:37 PM on November 8, 2005


How much does a Stinger missile go for around those parts, these days? I mean, they aren't just giving them away anymore...
posted by SweetJesus at 1:39 PM on November 8, 2005


You know, I really hate these FPPs where I have to click on each of the links to decipher what the post is about.
posted by deanc at 2:52 PM on November 8, 2005



Gotta agree with ironmouth. A buddy of mine serving over there said it’s a real shit sandwich. Dangerous that is. Swimmin’ pools. Movie starrrrs.



“However, it's perfectly above board from a legal stand point, so what's there to discuss?
posted by pieisexactlythree at 12:43 PM PST on November 8 [!]”


I dunno. First thing I thought of reading the links was how the Mongol empire opened the silk road to the west.
Perhaps it’s because I’m schizophrenic.

But why does exploitation, atrocity, and war with Islam come to mind?
In, y’know relation to the Mongols.
Weird. History n' stuff.
posted by Smedleyman at 2:54 PM on November 8, 2005


Where's the exploitation? Are they paying sub-market wages? Is it a sweatshop? I think there a lot of such machines out there to rage against. This just isn't one.

What does a hotel have to do with atrocity? War with Islam? huh? I don't know how to make sense of your comment.
posted by pieisexactlythree at 3:17 PM on November 8, 2005


The Kabul Serena (love that name!) redevelopment appears to be an Ismaili Shiite project sponsored by the Aga Khan.
posted by rdone at 3:36 PM on November 8, 2005



“What does a hotel have to do with atrocity? War with Islam? huh? I don't know how to make sense of your comment.
posted by pieisexactlythree at 3:17 PM PST on November 8 [!]”


I get a lot of that.


I was referencing the Big Picture. Hyper-Irony. Sort of like the Simpsons quotationalism style. If you miss the references you can interpret the show as unsubstantial and boring.
I suppose my comment would be Meta-Hyper-Global-Irony.
(for example a simpsons fan might think of Homer’s internet company here due to the cadence and words in Meta-Hyper-Global-Irony, which is why I phrased it that way, but don’t usually put this little explaination here. I figure a few people get it. Or not. I amuse myself. At least until I need glasses...)


The allusion is a bunc h of things - to the decadance the Mongol empire eventually succumbed to. They became divided. They began as conquerors though and conquered regions the U.S. is currently having trouble with. They attempted to trade with - for example -the middle east, Islam, and were rebuffed, so they invaded. This could be seen as similar to our current situation in Iraq. Particularly if you are aware of the concept that Saddam was going to switch to the Euro and that would have affected oil prices. The Mongols invaded because they wanted to continue trade along the Silk Road, the Islamic Emirs, etc., didn’t want to go along with it, so they were slaughtered.
Mongols committed horrific deeds. We have done some nasty things of late. The two don’t compare of course, but that’s part of the irony, bit over the top.


Also there is increased - vastly increased in fact - drug trafficking going on in Afghanistan, due perhaps to our invasion and removal of the anti-drug hardass Taliban. This is similar - in an ironic way to what happened with the Mongols. Before the Mongols took over, there could be no safe travel along the Silk Road.
There is a sort of imposition of our culture upon these folks, but also exploitive language in the hotel adverts. The “noble savage” and so forth.
A lot of themes along these lines have been referenced on Metafilter and on this very thread in fact.



I’m giving a lot of those concepts short shrift, but it’d be a lot to go into.
In some ways it’s Darmok and Jalad at Tenagra.
But Dante used allusion and pop references as well.



Anyway, you can look any of this up.


I just thought it was nifty that the situation with the Mongols was similar in many ways while being grossly exaggerated in some ways too.


No rage, just history and certain ideas, paradigms, repeating themselves. It’s amusing and sad and irritating. Ok, perhaps a little rage. Still, mostly just pathetic that what many dufus’ (what’s the plural of dufus? dufuses? dufi?) think what they should do is build friggin’ golf courses all over the place.
I’m waiting for one in Antarctica.


But if you’re not aquainted with that form of assholery, your’re not going to think it’s comical or sad, etc.
posted by Smedleyman at 4:45 PM on November 8, 2005


Not a lot of luck with subtlety in this medium. Meh.
posted by Smedleyman at 4:46 PM on November 8, 2005


Smedleyman, could you please stop triple spacing? It's really irritating.
posted by maryh at 4:56 PM on November 8, 2005


Yeah, quadruple spacing




is the wave of the future.
posted by davejay at 5:15 PM on November 8, 2005


Osama bin Laden compared the US to the Mongols:
[US Vice-President Dick] Cheney and [US Secretary of State Colin] Powell killed and destroyed in Baghdad more than Hulegu of the Mongols.
Earlier this year Ian Frazier had a very interesting article in The New Yorker about Hulagu and the significance of bin Laden's comparison.
posted by kirkaracha at 6:36 PM on November 8, 2005


pieisexactlythree may need to take a breather.
posted by shmegegge at 7:33 PM on November 8, 2005


Smedleyman, could you please stop triple spacing? It's really irritating.
posted by maryh at 4:56 PM PST on November 8 [!]

I'll do what I can. I'll probably eliminate spacing. Sorry. My work computer sucks.
posted by Smedleyman at 9:04 PM on November 8, 2005


Of course, almost no one in America had any idea what he was talking about,
- from Ian Frazier's very interesting article in The New Yorker posted by kirkaracha.


I can relate. Some kids read Hardy Boys mysteries growing up. I read Julius Caeser's Commentaries on the Gallic Wars.

"Men are nearly always willing to believe what they wish."
—Julius Caesar

Thanks, kirkaracha. Interesting read.
posted by Smedleyman at 9:18 PM on November 8, 2005


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