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In which John discusses Pakistani and American politics as well as new developments in Nerdfighteria.


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A Bunny
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((') (')
Good morning, Hank, and good morning, Nerdfighters.

It's Friday, January 4, 2008. Hank, it's the start of a new year, and I would like to suggest a motto for Vlogbrothers ‘08: The Vlogbrothers: Just because we're less frequent, doesn't mean we'll be better. Hank, today's video comes to you in four parts.

Part 1: the new intro. Do you like it? I hope you like it.

You designed it. But Nerdfighters, do you like it? Let us know in comments.

Part 2: the new website. In 2008, nerdfighting is gonna become more and more collaborative. And to that end, we've built a new site using Ning. “Ning” is a fun word to say.

Ning. Ning. Ning.

Ning! Ning!!! It's like you get all the good parts of “bling,” only you don't have to spend money on jewels.

It's like Sting, but when he was still in The Police. It's like “cling,” only no one ever broke up with me for being too “ningy.” So anyway, we've built this new site using Ning, and now everybody can have their own Nerdfighter profile, and they can post Nerdfighter pictures, and they can post Nerdfighter videos, and have Nerdfighter blogs, and it's gonna be, like, the Kingdom of Nerdfighteria. So everybody go look in the video info for the new site, then build a profile and become my friend.

Because Hank has more friends than me and I'm sad. Part 3: the political situation in Pakistan… …is very bad. Hank, as I'm sure you already know, the former prime minister of Pakistan, Benazir Bhutto, was recently assassinated.

It's not yet clear who was responsible for Bhutto’s death, but one thing is clear: Pakistan sucks a little more now that she's died. Now, I'm not saying that Benazir Bhutto was a perfect person or a perfect leader. When she was prime minister of Pakistan, there was a lot of corruption in the government.

All I'm saying is that she was a charismatic political presence and that she believed in the democratic process. Which is more than can be said for certain presidents of Pakistan, and, yes, I'm looking at you Pervez Musharraf. That's right, Hank, Musharraf, the dictatorial president of Pakistan, has used Bhutto's death to delay parliamentary elections that were supposed to happen this month.

I mean, Hank, to be completely frank with you, the evidence is mounting that Pervez Musharraf might be an asshat. I mean, look at him, Hank. Look at that asshat of a mustache.

Actually, it occurs to me that mustaches on world leaders in the 20th century: generally a bad sign. Stalin: bad. Hitler: bad.

Saddam Hussein: bad. Kaiser Wilhelm II, the guy who gave us such wars as World War I: bad. Genghis Khan: not a 20th century leader, but bad.

Actually, it occurs to me that as anti-democratic as Pervez Musharraf might be, in the context of other mustachioed 20th century leaders, he's kind of a winner. Part 4: Hank, speaking of the political situation in Pakistan, I need to make an apology. A few weeks ago, I made a video in which I ate a lot of peeps while discussing the political situation in Pakistan, and I accidentally referred to President Musharraf as Prime Minister Musharraf.

That was a significant error, and I apologize for it. But Hank, I'm not the only person who has recently been confused about the political situation in Pakistan. In two separate recent interviews, Hillary Clinton said that Musharraf was a candidate on the ballot in the elections that just got delayed.

As it happens, he's not a candidate on the ballot. In fact, Hank, unless I'm mistaken, the people of Pakistan have never had an opportunity to vote for Pervez Musharraf because he's never been a candidate for elected office. He, of course, took power in a military coup and has kept power since by being periodically re-upped begrudgingly by the National Assembly.

By claiming that Musharraf is a direct participant in the democratic process in Pakistan, Hillary Clinton lent legitimacy to his rule. Which is more or less the same mistake that I made when I screwed up and called him prime minister. But Hank, there's a small difference between myself and Hillary Clinton.

It's 3:10 in the afternoon, and I’m wearing my jammie pants; whereas, Senator Clinton wants to be our president. Not that we're endorsing anybody. Nerdfighters, I'm gonna do a Question Tuesdays next week, so do me a favor and leave your questions in the comments section.

Hank, Nerdfighters, I'll see you next week.