Things that make Baby Allah weep.

Full story at the Beeb.


There is a GD thread on this.

BTW “Baby Allah” is not the most felicitious turn of phrase. After all the Quran says “Never Born” in re God. Best not to use Xtian refs in re other monotheisms, they don’t translate well.

Try Baby Muhammed?

Nope, Muhammed (or any other prophet, including Jesus) isn’t that kind of figure in Islam.

Make God Cry maybe.

BTW: follow up reports as noted in GD thread question the original lurid detials.

I have my own questions re the follow up spin knowing that society, but it is a far more interesting situation than first appears.


**Now, now, we don’t need to be… “ragging” on our Saudi Arabian friends.


Oh, I’m laughing so hard I’m crying. Hey, Mo! Throw me a… “towel!”


Ahhh. Oh, shit. That’s the best part about being God–I am infinitely amusing. Now, back to making sure this guy never gets to have sex again…**


Oh, come on, Collounsbury. This is so obvious as to be not worth mentioning. I’m going to go out on a limb and say “inside joke” trumped “absolute theological accuracy” in shaping beagledave’s intent here.

As to the events described in the OP, well, they’re horrible.

If there’s a better argument for drilling for oil in Alaska, I ain’t heard it.

It’s absolutely inexcusable that the US permits itself to trade with these savages.

I don’t draw much distinction between them and the Taliban, except that the Saudis have lots of the black stuff.

Simply exercising my divinely granted right not to like a dumb usage. I don’t even care for the baby Jesus idiocy either, it is sadly overused and not the least bit entertaining anymore, if it ever was.

The easily excited may wish to visit the GD thread to learn more, as the first lurid reporting may have been incorrect. I suspect not substantially so, at least in spirit, but incorrect to some extent.

However, as an argument for drilling in Alaska it is a non-argument except perhaps for those irretrievably illiterate in economics. Supply and demand. Oil is a commodity traded on world markets, the price is determined by world demand. The marginal supplies that Alaska might offer are insignificant, above all when one considers (a) overall US demand and (b) the length of time which reserves may be anticipated to last. Saudis actually sell at something of a loss here simply to have an angle on the US market, US not buying from them hardly would disrupt overall demand and would simply mean buying from someone else whose market share would be displaced onto the Saudis. Moreover as the lowest cost incremental producer, they have market power –should they choose to use it—regardless of whether we buy from them or not. Take their oil off the market (they probably can’t afford to due to internal economic constraints) and world supply is a in world of hurt in the short run, not the least because of the marginal cost of adding extra production – although I’m sure everyone else would love the windfall benefits while they lasted.

That aside, Saudi society, as unpleasant as it is, is quite different from Taleban. Saudis educate their women, have actually raised female literacy levels to respectable levels from near universal illiteracy only 2 or 3 generations ago. They do have entirely straightjacketed and narrow-minded to the point of almost collapsing from its own weight into a black hole of ignorance POV on what women can and should do with an education, but they’re not as benighted as the Taleban were by at least a half-km. Behind the wall of stereotypes the society is rather more complex than such stories as this imply.


Not taking away from your analysis in any way, but there is one salient point that many people overlook when the subject of oil comes up. The U.S. simply dosen’t need Middle Eastern oil. Oil from the Mid East makes up a bit more than 10% of the oil consumed in and by this country, an ammount tthat could be replaced by relatively mild conservation laws. No, we keep the oil flowing from the Mid East primarily for Europe and Japan, who are very dependent on it. This fact is almost always overlooked, and it steams me when I hear people, particularly Europeans, bashing U.S. policy as totally self centered.

Don’t worry you didn’t take a thing away from my analysis. Economics. Bloody motherfucking economics. Oil is a commodity. Middle Eastern oil is a (near) perfect substitute(*) for Venezuelan oil and vice versa, and there is a well developed international trading system to move it around. World supplies go down by x% that Saudi fields supply, that means x% not getting to American markets unless we bid higher. And insofar as we do not have export controls, the same goes for Alaskan field production or any other bleeding production.(**)

The world collectively is dependent on oil, sourcing is of a somewhat secondary concern. We keep oil flowing because those who have to understand this, do.

Get steamed about something else because you’re bloody stinking wrong, except of course Europeans are indeed hypocritical insofar as they often free-ride off of US insurance. On the other hand they also believe, sometimes correctly, that they can reach better modus vivendi than certain clumsy presidents have.
(*: in fact due to differences from field to field, refineries sometimes have to be retooled to deal with different fields outputs, e.g. Venezuelan crude I am led to understand is pretty low quality with lots of contaminants, making it more expensive to refine, thus less expensive on the primary market.)

(**: price and other governmental controls through to the 1970s were a disaster in the long run, please let no one suggest those.)

Sorry wierddave, your reply did not deserve the rather strenous reaction. I got carried away.

My reasons for supporting other sources of oil is not an economical one entirely; I’m aware that drilling in Alaska won’t affect supply significantly. I simply want to put less money in the hands of morally repugnant states. Any action which would reduce (or hopefully eliminate) dependence on Saudi oil, then, is favorable to me.

Fair enough.


The Saudis will sell their oil whether we’re buying it or not. The difference between an oil market within which the U.S. buys Saudi oil, and one within which we don’t, is that in the first instance the U.S. will have some influence with the Saudis, as one of their biggest customers. It’s against our interest to stop buying their oil, I think, both practically and ideologically.

Sigh. The Saudis will continue to be able to sell their oil on the WORLD market as long as Saudi oil is the cheapest to extract.

Still, one could reduce the profits that the Saudis receive by lowering the world oil price. The latter could be undertaken by increasing supply or by cutting back on demand. My understanding is that the scope for the latter greatly exceeds the scope for the former. (Reducing demand would also provides additional environmental benefits in terms of health and habitat, of course.)

As for myself, I just as soon access oil from sensitive habitats when the real price of oil is at historically high levels, rather than historically low levels. But that’s just me.