Motley Moose – Archive

Since 2008 – Progress Through Politics

A Moose Murder: Friday Open Thread

Not a great week for this vagabond Brit to return to the progressive online community. After three months living out of suitcases, I return to find that everything has fallen apart since I’ve been away.

1. War escalates in Afghanistan.

2. The Senate pass a heavily watered down health care reform bill.

3. Obama has to confront the reality that the Copenhagen talks on climate change and man made emissions are heading nowhere.

Jeesh. I’ll be careful next time I move. There’s lots to be said about all these things, and having experienced this meme in the British media, I’m sure you’re all getting in the neck too. The line goes like this (I’ve seen it in the Guardian Blog today)…

waaa…waaaa waaaa… poor Obama he can’t be expected to save the world…..WHAT??? time out you liberal tards, 12 months ago he was the second coming, now he is only human? You IDIOTS put him on a pedestal now you see him for the what he is, the Wizard behind the curtain….fools.

But actually there’s little to be said about this. The argument starts from a false premise (Obama’s supporters were all quasi mystical maniacs) and then starts trampling on the battered remnants of its own straw man. I, for one, always supported Obama because of his clear eyed realism: something apparent in both his attitudes to setbacks in healthcare reform and reducing human carbon emissions. Disappointed, yes. Defeated – hell no!

Time will tell. As a long time supporter of progressive causes, this hardly strikes me as the darkest hour, whatever Chicken Little says.

But talking of furry creatures, the news that most shocked during my peregrinations is that a Moose (we call them Elks) has been responsible for murder.

A Swedish man who was arrested on suspicion of murdering his wife has been cleared, after police decided she was probably killed by an elk.  Ingemar Westlund, aged 68, found the dead body of his wife Agneta, 63, by a lake close to the village of Loftahammer in September 2008.  He was immediately arrested and held in police custody for 10 days.

Now the case has been dropped after forensic analysis found elk hair and saliva on his wife’s clothes.

Mr Westlund told Expressen newspaper: “My family and I have been dragged through a nightmare.”  His wife had last been seen taking the family dog out for a walk in the forest. When she failed to return her husband went out to look for her.  Although the murder investigation was dropped five months ago, details have only just emerged and the police plan to hold a news conference next week to explain what happened.

The European elk, or moose, is usually considered to be shy and will normally run away from humans.  But Swedish Radio International says the animals can become aggressive after eating fermented fallen apples in gardens.

So not only can Mooses be homicidal, they can also   – rather like elephants – develop a habit for psychoactive chemicals in fermented apples.

Whatever next?

In a week when progressive politics has suffered several setbacks, it doesn’t help to know our peaceable mascot can get murderously drunk.

Maybe Chicken Little was right…


  1. However, I don’t think it is nearly as bad as everyone thinks.

    o  HRC – we’ll see what passes (and it will), but I think it may in retrospect be very much what Obama campaigned on.

    o  War – Iraq is fairly quiet and slowly winding down: massive quantities of equipment have been organized and shipped out and troops levels are ebbing.  Afghanistan is getting more attention.  If I’m not mistaken, that is exactly what he campaigned on.

    o  Climate change – the global situation may or may not move in all the right directions, but Cree Inc is booming because of green initiatives spawned by the new administration in DC and other Green momentum is underway (I know a person who got a grant to investigate power from roadways, for example).

    o  Economy – the big test of the administration is what it does for living standards, and while the economy may still be a mess it isn’t the mess it could have been.  In fact, talking to financial folks about this in the past week I come to realize two things: 1/ there was no way whatsoever that the economy would have been much better than it is right now based on where it was this January (much less last Nov); and 2/ there was a very good chance that the economy could have been much much much (ad infinitum) worse today than it is.

    The Murderous Mooses and Loquacious Liberals may be the only real tragedies of the year.

  2. fogiv

    …it doesn’t help to know our peaceable mascot can get murderously drunk.

    A few short nights ago, I indulged in about six pints of Old Speckled Hen (on an empty stomach).  I don’t think I killed anyone, but my memory has some rather large gaps. Evidently, I came home full piss and vinegar, and possessed of a singular desire to discuss (at ridiculous length) the assholery of a certain Independent senator from Connecticut.  My newly minted bride nearly killed me.

    Whether or not the Old Speckled Hen and Chicken Little are related remains a mystery.

    Fantastic to have you back, Chap.  

  3. DTOzone

    I’m trying to call myself 29 as long as I possibly can…my time of birth is 4:25 pm, so I got about another five more hours of being in the my 20’s.

    ugh, I feel like it was only yesterday I was feeling screwed because I was only 20 on New Year’s Eve 1999.

  4. Cheryl Kopec

    … It was at a party for a different occasion, no less. How silly I feel about that now. My 40th occurred just days after the 9-11 attacks, so I hardly even noticed it in the wake of that monstrosity. My 50th is now looming, but I probably won’t even be paying attention. I’m still a better version of me than I was in my 20’s, and that’s all that counts — try to put out a better version of yourself than the one before.

    It’s so funny to contemplate drunken animals. When I was stationed in Germany, the birds would eat the overripe berries off the trees and smash themselves into windows. We’d have to pick up the remnants of their suicidal frenzies every morning.  

  5. HappyinVT

    Once I figured out what to wear there wasn’t much else to think about.

    During the primaries then-candidate Obama was eviscerated on the blogosphere for going back on his promise to support a filibuster of the FISA legislation; corporate sell-out was, and is, a common refrain.  He eventually posted an explanation on where he reasoned that the bill was the best that Congress would be able to pass.  We can certainly agree or disagree with his reasoning.  We can certainly believe that part of the reason was purely political; I do.  I also think, however, it showed a core part of his belief and that is you get done what you can with what you have to work with.

    Is that caving to the moderates or corporations or Wall Street?  Or is that understanding how the game is played and shooting for long-terms goals at the expense of short-term gains.  Or am I just making excuses?  Again, time will tell.  We’re a long way away from 2012.

  6. sricki

    Who knew moose got wasted. Guess I’m more of a moose than I ever realized — though I promise, I’m not violent.

    In other news, my one year anniversary with my girlfriend is Sunday, and I’m cookin’ tonight. So I will likely be doing a good bit of drunken blogging for the next 2-3 days, as the wine will be flowing pretty continuously. Apparently I am laboring under the delusion impression that I can’t celebrate properly without being well toasted.

    And the holidays are not long after! Oh dear, you people may not see me sober again for over a week.  

  7. spacemanspiff

    So not only can Mooses be homicidal, they can also   – rather like elephants – develop a habit for psychoactive chemicals in fermented apples.

    I think this should be included in the About Us section of the Moose.


  8. alyssa chaos

    ha. the madness that is school is finally over and I can smile again without faking it.

    Just got from a huge conference on climate change actually. It was really inspiring to see the room packed to the gills when the talk on CO2 emissions was held. there are so many people who are working hella hard on finding solutions, tracking current changes to our atmosphere, and trying to model the future of our atmosphere. Its horrible because I cant recall the guy’s name who gave the presentation, hahaa but it was great. Now if only we can get politicians to act on the research scientists are doing…[yay for copenhagen]

    16,000+ scientists in one place for a week was interesting, and i must say them geophysicists love the booze!

    Im so happy to finally be home!

    Happy Holidays Moose peeps! exclamation point!

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