It's all fine and dandy to watch car racing on Tee Vee but being there in person, where you can feel them go by, smelling the smells and hearing 'em with your own ears are thrills you'l never get from a Sony.
31 March 2007
Here's that heartless and mean ol' warmonger lending a helping hand to a political opponent many years his senior. This photo, by the way, is from a ceremony that awarded a congressional Gold Medal to the Tuskegee Airmen. The fact that that Robert Byrd, a former Exalted Cyclops with the Ku Klux Klan, was in attendence is an irony that Big Media will happily bury.
30 March 2007
Sir Nicholas Stern, Joel Connelly and Laurie David; all roundly fisked in one easy-to-read essay.
For sure, Laurie and Joel and Sir Nick! When not banning US vehicles entirely, China apparently limits its intake of American road metal to fuel-sipping Caddy econopods: During a ceremony at Beijing’s Imperial Ancestors’ Temple, a symbol of ancient China, General Motors officially launched Cadillac, its premium luxury brand for modern China. Three new Cadillac models that will be sold in China - the CTS, SRX and XLR - were unveiled at the ceremony. All three products embody Cadillac’s distinctive bold design, purposeful innovation and balanced performance ... All three models will start as imports from GM’s North American Operations. They will be built at the company’s Grand River manufacturing facility in Lansing, Michigan, and at its facility in Bowling Green, Kentucky.Anyone who's been to a city in China will tell you that on a clear day the sky is brown, but don't let that stop you from trying to make it look like things are worse here in the ol' US, you all knowing, all wise celebrity authoritarians.
Dang, that web archiving can be so annoying when you're of the story-changing lot.
Although no one doubts our forces will prevail over Saddam Hussein's, key regional leaders confirm what the Foreign Relations Committee emphasized in its Iraq hearings last summer: The most challenging phase will likely be the day after -- or, more accurately, the decade after -- Saddam Hussein.
Once he is gone, expectations are high that coalition forces will remain in large numbers to stabilize Iraq and support a civilian administration. That presence will be necessary for several years, given the vacuum there, which a divided Iraqi opposition will have trouble filling and which some new Iraqi military strongman must not fill.
Various experts have testified that as many as 75,000 troops may be necessary, at a cost of up to $ 20 billion a year. That does not include the cost of the war itself, or the effort to rebuild Iraq.
Iran also faces new UN sanctions. It’s relationship with Russia is shaky. The Iranians’ coordinate faux pas adds a strange Keystone Kop element. The Times reports:
The Iranians also blundered in diplomatic talks by giving the British their own compass reference for the place where they said the 14 men and one woman had been seized. When Britain plotted these on a map and pointed out that the spot was in Iraq’s maritime area, the Iranians came up with a new set of coordinates, putting the seizure in their own waters.
This may prove to be a microcosm of Iran’s own situation. The Iranians had the tactical military operation planned but failed to coordinate the political cover story. That’s a media and diplomatic embarassment — hence a blow to Iran’s prestige.
These documents give insight into the RIAA's decision-making process, and could help people avoid lawsuits in the future.What kind of diseased industry sues consumers for doing their promotion? It'll be a great day when the last big, dinosaur record label crumbles under the weight of its own stupidity.
29 March 2007
Feinstein was chairperson and ranking member of MILCON for six years, during which time she had a conflict of interest due to her husband Richard C. Blum's ownership of two major defense contractors, who were awarded billions of dollars for military construction projects approved by Feinstein.Pretty scathing stuff but it's worse news for all of us, becuase of how no one reported Feinstein's resignation at the time and essentially still haven't. Given the no-bid situations and conflict of financial interest, Feinstein's tale closely parallels the universally loathed Haliburton and the actions of Randy Cunningam, who's in prison.
The MILCON subcommittee is not only in charge of supervising military construction, it also oversees "quality of life" issues for veterans, which includes building housing for military families and operating hospitals and clinics for wounded soldiers. Perhaps Feinstein is trying to disassociate herself from MILCON's incredible failure to provide decent medical care for wounded soldiers.
You would think that, considering all the money Feinstein's family has pocketed by waging global warfare while ignoring the plight of wounded American soldiers, she would show a smidgeon of shame and resign from the entire Senate, not just a subcommittee.
Why the virtual blackout? Compare the personal and public political ideologies of Diane Feinstein to those in the newsrooms of the Herd Media for starters.
The Iranians cannot try the men for espionage if they captured the sailors in uniform. Article 46 of the Geneva Convention states this clearly:2. A member of the armed forces of a Party to the conflict who, on behalf of that Party and in territory controlled by an adverse Party, gathers or attempts to gather information shall not be considered as engaging in espionage if, while so acting, he is in the uniform of his armed forces.
The indictment of British sailors in uniform as spies will violate the GC. Can we expect the same level of outrage over this explicit violation as the supposed violations of the US government?
28 March 2007
Liverpool's new owners . . . have been asked by city council leaders to look again at sharing their new stadium with Everton. Liverpool have always ruled out sharing with Everton but council leader Warren Bradley wants them to reconsider. He told the Liverpool Echo: "If they can consider an increase in size, why can't they consider a shared stadium?"Apples and oranges, Warren.
Liverpool have yet to confirm the decision to suspend preparatory work on theHow gross is that - A team wants to use their own money to build a new stadium and the Man From the Government wants them to include his favorite team in a grounds sharing deal. Authority mixed with ego and no sense of shame are a very dangerous civic combination.
£215m project in Stanley Park, but have revealed a review will be undertaken. And Bradley, an (Everton) season-ticket holder, feels Hicks and Gillette could be persuaded to allow Everton to share the new ground.
You can say that it's a ridiculous move, and the suit will probably be tossed by the first judge that hears it, but to even get to a point in the process where an attorney can request summary dismissal, the defendants will be in for a lengthy and expensive journey through the legal system. Fortunately for the "John Doe" defendants that CAIR and the imams intend to sue, a lawyer from Faegre & Benson in Minneapolis has decided to represent them pro bono. Our hats are off to you, Mr. Nolting.
The crass intimidation of the suit has already produced a legislative initiative in Washington: The Rail and Public Transportation Security Act (HR 1401) was amended to include protections for the travelling public who notify authorities of suspicious activity and happily it passed, 304-121:
(T)he Rail and Public Transportation Security Act of 2007, provides that any person who makes a voluntary disclosure regarding suspicious activity that constitutes a possible threat to transportation security to appropriate security and law enforcement authorities shall be immune from civil liability for such disclosure. The amendment protects any such disclosure relating to threats to transportation systems, passenger safety or security, or possible acts of terrorism. The amendment also shields transportation systems and employees that take reasonable actions to mitigate perceived threats. Finally, the motion authorizes courts to award attorneys fees to defendants with immunity.Both the government and common sense request of the travelling public notification of persons, behaviors and activities that they consider suspicious in all parts of the transportation infrastructure. This act protects those individuals from legal action. Who could be against this? Well, Betty McCollom, my representative, for one.
I have sent an e-mail to her office asking why she opposed this and will post the reply when received.
The record of action and non-action by the United Nations Human Rights Council is both sad and laughable. To make things even less palatable, check out the end of this, after Hillel Neuer lays out the verbal dope slap. The reaction of that body's 'leader' speaks volumes about the politization and ineptitude of the UNHRC.
27 March 2007
Like their counterparts in the House, the Senate has larded its version of an “emergency” war spending bill with nearly $20 billion in pork-barrel outlays, including $100 million for the two major political parties’ 2008 presidentialLike Christmas trees, congress comes in one color; green. Unfortunately, there's so much dust on W's veto pen that I'm not sure he'll be able to find it.
The new bill also includes $13 million for “ewe replacement and retention,” $24 million for sugar beets growers and $95 million for dairy producers. And it includes $3.5 million for the Capitol’s guided–tour program and $20 million for, in part, insect infestation control in Nevada, thanks to Majority Leader Harry Reid. Among the other beneficiaries of the Senate “emergency” war bill is the tree assistance program, including, specifically, Christmas trees.
25 March 2007
Last night - Minnesota Wild 4, Los Angeles hockey Kings 1. Our 3rd-string goalie was very good and, as the coach would say, "we got da goals."
For the time being we are in first place in the Northwest Division, and 3rd in the Western Conference. For Wild fans, we are walking in high cotton.
24 March 2007
23 March 2007
"Army Revises Upward Number of Desertions in ’06."Here's the first paragraph:
"A total of 3,196 active-duty soldiers deserted the Army last year, or 853 more than previously reported, according to revised figures from the Army. The new calculations by the Army, which had about 500,000 active-duty troops at the end of 2006, significantly alter the annual desertion totals since the 2000 fiscal year."You get the point; War is evil, Bush is bad, troop morale is low, Cheney cooks puppies for lunch at Haliburton headquarters and all that rot, but lets dig a bit deeper in the same story:
Lt. Col. Brian C. Hilferty, an Army spokesman, said the desertion data errors were caused by confusion among employees who tally them. “They were counting things wrong, and doing it inconsistently,” Colonel Hilferty said in an interview. He added, “We are looking at the rise in desertions, but the numbers remain below prewar levels, and retention remains high. So the force is healthy.”As Scrappleface puts it, "Army Desertions Rise to Near All-Time Average."
When he arrived at the first house on his route, the whole family came out, roundly congratulated him, and sent him on his way with a tidy gift envelope. At the second house they presented him with a box of fine cigars. The folks at the third house handed him a selection of terrific fishing lures.
At the next house, he was met at the door by a strikingly beautiful woman in a revealing negligee. She took him by the hand, and led him up the stairs to the bedroom where she blew his mind with the most passionate love he had ever experienced. When he'd had enough, they went downstairs, where she fixed him a giant breakfast: eggs, potatoes, ham, sausage, blueberry waffles and fresh-squeezed orange juice. When he was truly satisfied, she poured him a cup of steaming coffee. As she was pouring, he noticed a dollar bill sticking out from under the cup's bottom edge. "All this is just too wonderful for words," he said, "but what's the dollar for?" "Well," she said, "last night, I told my husband that today would be your last day, and that I wanted to do something special for you. I asked him what to give you. He said, 'Screw him. Give him a dollar.'"
"Breakfast was my idea."
"We should be aware of people who, sometimes for good reasons, try to establish what I call private moral codes, for this or that, be it climate change, religious behaviour or any kind of social behaviour," (European Commission President José Manuel Barroso) says.
"I was 18 years old when a democratic revolution came to my country. Before we could not read the books or listen to the music we wanted," he says, speaking in his 13th-floor office in the Berlaymont building in Brussels. "I am radical on these matters. If there is an excess of freedom, it is better to have excess than less."
"We have to show respect for all communities but the fundamental right of freedom of expression is for me more important than other collective rights," he says.
Over the past ten years this deadly suicide epidemic has spread from the Palestinians to other parts of the Arab and Islamic world and has killed innocent people all over the globe. Like all other epidemics where it will spread to next is unpredictable and stopping it is a difficult, maybe impossible, task. However let us please call it what it really is: a killer epidemic spawned from a tragically erroneous world view. Not an act of desperation.
22 March 2007
Pesky hindsight . . .
A majority of the member states thought he was right and had to admit that the credibility of the United Nations was at stake. It was scandalous that such a regime could for more than a decade have violated the spirit and the letter of the resolutions that had allowed a cease-fire after the liberation of Kuwait. The Security Council, including Syria, voted by nine votes to zero that Iraq must come into full compliance or face serious consequences.
The entire record of UNSCOM until that date had shown a determination on the part of the Iraqi dictatorship to build dummy facilities to deceive inspectors, to refuse to allow scientists to be interviewed without coercion, to conceal chemical and biological deposits, and to search the black market for materiel that would breach the sanctions. The defection of Saddam Hussein's sons-in-law, the Kamel brothers, had shown that this policy was even more systematic than had even been suspected. Moreover, Iraq did not account for—has in fact never accounted for—a number of the items that it admitted under pressure to possessing after the Kamel defection. We still do not know what happened to this weaponry. This is partly why all Western intelligence agencies, including French and German ones quite uninfluenced by Ahmad Chalabi, believed that Iraq had actual or latent programs for the production of WMD.
During the heyday of multiculturalism and political correctness in the 1980s, the response of us, the hosts, to this novel challenge was not to insist upon the traditional assimilation of the newcomer but rather to accommodate the illegal alien with official Spanish-language documents, bilingual education, and ethnic boosterism in our media, politics, and education. These responses only encouraged more illegals to come, on the guarantee that their material life could be better and yet their culture unchanged in the United States. We now see the results. Los Angeles is today the second-largest Mexican city in the world; one out of every ten Mexican nationals resides in the United States, the vast majority illegally.
In contrast, this spring Americans witnessed millions of illegal aliens who not only were unapologetic about their illegal status but were demanding that their hosts accommodate their own political grievances, from providing driver’s licenses to full amnesty. The largest demonstrations—held on May Day, with thousands of protesters waving Mexican flags and bearing placards depicting the communist insurrectionist Che Guevara—only confirmed to most Americans that illegal immigration was out of control and beginning to become politicized along the lines of Latin American radicalism. I chronicled in Mexifornia the anomaly of angry protesters waving the flag of the country they vehemently did not wish to return to, but now the evening news beamed these images to millions. In short, the radical socialism of Latin America, seething in the angry millions who flocked to support Venezuela’s Hugo Chávez, Bolivia’s Evo Morales, and Mexico’s Andrés López Obrador, had now seemingly been imported into our own largest cities.
21 March 2007
I liked it better when our mayors used to get on each other's nerves and take potshots at each other's burg. Now, it's all sweetness and light. The Brother was even quoted in the newspaper as saying that Minneapolis and St. Paul are each other's "best friend."Best friend?" Watch out, Little Brother. That's what somebody always calls someone in a mob movie right before they end up in a river.
It isn't natural for rivals to be best friends. These cities are supposed to battle each other for the spotlight and publicity and tax dollars. Sid Hartman used to call St. Paul "East Berlin," and he's still mad that the NHL is playing in St. Paul.
20 March 2007
House Democratic leaders are offering billions in federal funds for lawmakers' pet projects large and small to secure enough votes this week to pass an Iraq funding bill that would end the war next year. So far, the projects -- which range from the reconstruction of New Orleans levees to the building of peanut storehouses in Georgia -- have had little impact on the tally. For a funding bill that establishes tough new readiness standards for deploying combat forces and sets an Aug. 31, 2008, deadline to bring the troops home, votes do not come cheap.Pelosi: "Will you vote for this?"
Your Representative: "No."
Pelosi: "How about if it's fattened up with pork for your district?"
Your Representative: "You bet!"
Is your representative supporting the troops and their mission by fattening up the shrimp population? I've no doubt mine would in a heartbeat.
To get them off the fence and on the bill, Democrats have a key weapon at their disposal: cold, hard cash. The bill contains billions for agriculture and drought relief, children's health care and Gulf Coast hurricane recovery.
For Rep. Sam Farr (D-Calif.), there is $25 million for spinach growers hurt by last year's E. coli scare. For three conservative Democrats in Georgia, there is $75 million for peanut storage. For lawmakers from the bone-dry West, there is $500 million for wildfire suppression. An additional $120 million is earmarked for shrimp and Atlantic menhaden fishermen.
Amen, my brother.
For more than a year, Rep. Charles Boustany Jr. (R) has tried unsuccessfully to secure federal funds to prevent salt water from intruding on rice fields in his lowland
Louisiana district. So it came as a surprise last week when Boustany found $15 million in the House's huge war spending bill for his rice farmers. He hadn't even asked that the bill include it.
"The war supplemental legislation voted out of the Appropriations Committee last week was an exercise in arrogance that demonstrated the utter contempt the majority has for the American people and their hard-earned tax dollars," fumed Rep. John Shadegg (R-Ariz.). "We are at war with a ruthless global terrorist network, yet the appropriators allocated hundreds of millions in funds to gratuitous pork projects."
18 March 2007
My local BMW dealer booked my order, and then faxed my specifications and delivery date to the Fatherland. After factory approval, I filled out some simple forms, made a copy of my passport and faxed ze paypaz to Germany. In exchange, I received a five percent discount off the U.S. list price (the dealer is free to discount further). Done.
European rental cars are dull and expensive; figure that’s another $2k saved. Oh, and you also get to ignore the break in period and drive as fast as you dare on unrestricted segments of the Autobahn. As the MasterCard voice-over guys says, "priceless."
An audit of a program that provides home insulation and weatherization for low-income people shows that the state did a poor job of record keeping, and that more than $1 million was spent on projects in which the costs exceeded the benefits. The number of homes involved in projects where costs outweighed benefits was not revealed.Of course not; why should the public know anything about how public money is spent?
"If they're going to invest in a person's home, they're supposed to get savings greater than the investment. We found cases where they didn't," said Brad White, audit manager. "We felt the department needed to do a better job monitoring the program. They're supposed to audit 5 percent of the jobs. There's no evidence they did."Well, it IS for low-income people, which makes non-low-income people feel better, so that's what really matters; not whether lots of the money was pissed away.
Ed Garvey, deputy commerce commissioner, said his agency added new software last year that failed to match costs and benefits on home-insulation projects. "The data's all there, but the dots are not connected," he said.Thanks for the reassuring words, Ed. First, I'd like to know what this magical new software cost. Then I'd like to know if the software is junk or if the people who were using it are just idiots without the benefit of oversight.
You can always rest assured that when government is at the helm the ship of society will soon be hard against the reef.
17 March 2007
"Ladies and gentlemen, what happened in New Orleans could happen anywhere," Nagin said at a dinner sponsored by the National Newspaper Publishers Association, a trade group for newspapers that target black readers. "They are studying this model of natural disasters, dispersing the community and changing the electoral process in that community."Keep hope alive, Ray, you fraud.
Nagin, who won reelection last May over Lt. Gov. Mitch Landrieu, referred obliquely to the "chocolate city" comment at the dinner and suggested that his assertion that New Orleans would once again be a majority-black city had made him a political target.
I'm shocked; shocked I tell you, to discover that when the United Nations starts throwing around worthless resolutions that there is wiggle room on opposing religion-based genocide. Someday, Russia and China will become walk upright politically, just not yet.
China and Russia joined with Arab and Muslim states yesterday in urging the U.N.'s human rights watchdog to ignore a report from a mission to Darfur that blamed Sudan for continuing war crimes against civilians there. The two permanent its mandate.
African states that failure to act would undermine the credibility of the newly formed Human Rights Council, Muslim and Arab states and their allies backed Sudan's assertion that the report had no legal basis.
Observers estimate 200,000 people have been killed and more than 2 million driven from their homes since fighting broke out between rebels and government-backed Arab militias four years ago in Darfur. The Sudanese government denies responsibility for abuses and blames rebel groups that have refused to sign a peace deal.
In the old days, recruitment for the army was carried out by a bagpiper who marched through fields and valleys, playing as he went and collecting young men behind him. There are also those who believe that Danny is joining the IRA to free Old Ireland, and that his father, having suffered at the hands of English gaolers, foresees that he will not live to see this liberation. Others, who do not see bagpipes to necessarily mean Ireland, suggest that the British Army is recruiting replacements for a distant war - perhaps as far away as Québec or India, and that Danny is off to serve King and country. Whatever battle it is, it can't be a very hazardous one, as he is expected to return. However, given that Weatherley himself said that there was no element of rebellion or bloodshed in the song, the notion that Danny is going off to war is probably unlikely.Reading all the lyrics makes you realize why my people live on Guinness.
Another explanation is that Danny is leaving Ireland and the Great Potato Blight for the New World and that the song is sung by his mother bidding him farewell. Unfortunately for her, Danny will probably never see her again - few emigrants returned to their home soil.
15 March 2007
Sure they sue the Deep Pockets. That doesn't mean you and I won't also make the list.
In retribution for this action, the unnamed couple probably will be dragged into court soon and face the prospect of hiring a lawyer, enduring hostile questioning and paying huge legal bills. The same fate could await other as-yet-unnamed passengers on the US Airways flight who came forward as witnesses. The imams' attempt to bully ordinary passengers marks an alarming new front in the war on airline security.
Average folks, "John Does" like you and me, initially observed and reported the imams' suspicious behavior on Nov. 20. Such people are our "first responders" against terrorism. But the imams' suit may frighten such individuals into silence, as they seek to avoid the nightmare of being labeled bigots and named as defendants.
14 March 2007
As it happens, Mrs. Clinton is just the Senator to walk point on this issue of dismissing U.S. attorneys because she has direct personal experience. In any Congressional probe of the matter, we'd suggest she call herself as the first witness--and bring along Webster Hubbell as her chief counsel.Read it all. It addresses the kennard of 'fired for not prosecuting the Bush/Cheney way.'
As everyone once knew but has tried to forget, Mr. Hubbell was a former partner of Mrs. Clinton at the Rose Law Firm in Little Rock who later went to jail for mail fraud and tax evasion. He was also Bill and Hillary Clinton's choice as Associate Attorney General in the Justice Department when Janet Reno, his nominal superior, simultaneously fired all 93 U.S. Attorneys in March 1993. Ms. Reno--or Mr. Hubbell--gave them 10 days to move out of their offices.
By dismissing all 93 U.S. Attorneys at once, the Clintons conveniently cleared the decks to appoint "Friend of Bill" Paula Casey as the U.S. Attorney for Little Rock. Ms. Casey never did bring any big Whitewater indictments, and she rejected information from another FOB, David Hale, on the business practices of the Arkansas elite including Mr. Clinton. When it comes to "politicizing" Justice, in short, the Bush White House is full of amateurs compared to the Clintons.
No question, the Justice Department and White House have botched the handling of this issue from start to finish. But what we don't have here is any serious evidence that the Administration has acted improperly or to protect some of its friends. If Democrats want to understand what a real abuse of power looks like, they can always ask the junior Senator from New York.
There is something profoundly wrong when opposition to the war in Iraq seems to inspire greater passion than opposition to Islamist extremism. There is something profoundly wrong when there is so much distrust of our intelligence community that some Americans doubt the plain and ominous facts about the threat to us posed by Iran. And there is something profoundly wrong when, in the face of attacks by radical Islam, we think we can find safety and stability by pulling back, by talking to and accommodating our enemies, and abandoning our friends and allies. Some of this wrong-headed thinking about the world is happening because we're in a political climate where, for many people, when George Bush says "yes," their reflex reaction is to say "no." That is unacceptable.
12 March 2007
Timothy Ball, a former climatology professor at the University of Winnipeg in Canada, has received five deaths threats by email since raising concerns about the degree to which man was affecting climate change. One of the emails warned that, if he continued to speak out, he would not live to see further global warming.Sometimes it's not just an opinion, theory or lifestyle; for some, it's religion.
"I can tolerate being called a sceptic because all scientists should be sceptics, but then they started calling us deniers, with all the connotations of the Holocaust. That is an obscenity. It has got really nasty and personal."
(Dr. Myles Allen of Oxford University) said: "The Green movement has hijacked the issue of climate change. It is ludicrous to suggest the only way to deal with the problem is to start micro managing everyone, which is what environmentalists seem to want to do."
One day, while the boy was away at school, his father decided to try an experiment. He went into the boy's room and placed on his study table four objects: A Bible, a silver dollar, a bottle of whisky and a Playboy magazine.
"I'll just hide behind the door," the old preacher said to himself, "and when he comes home from school this afternoon, I'll see which object he picks up. If it's the Bible, he's going to be a preacher like me, and what a blessing that would be! If he picks up the dollar, he's going to be a businessman, and that would be okay, too. But if he picks up the bottle, he's going to be a no-good drunkard, and, Lord, what a shame that would be. And worst of all, if he picks up that magazine he's gonna be a skirt-chasin' bum."
The old man waited anxiously, and soon heard his son's footsteps as he entered the house whistling and headed for his room. The boy tossed his books on the bed, and as he turned to leave the room he spotted the objects on the table. With curiosity in his eye, he walked over to inspect them.Finally, he picked up the Bible and placed it under his arm. He picked up the silver dollar and dropped it into his pocket. He uncorked the bottle and took a big drink while he admired this month's Centerfold.
"Lord have mercy," the old preacher disgustedly whispered, "he's gonna be a Congressman.
11 March 2007
A leading Muslim cleric has blamed the drought, climate change and pollution on Australians' lack of faith in Allah. Radical sheik Mohammed Omran told followers at his Brunswick mosque that out-of-control secular scientific values had caused environmental disaster. "The fear of Allah is not there. So we have now a polluted earth, a polluted water, a wasteland," he told a meeting this year.Yea, sounds reasonable to me . . .
Sheik Abdul Raheem Green forbade Muslims from having fewer than four children so Australia would become an Islamic state. "In Canada one in three or one in four children being born is a Muslim. What does that do to the demographic shift of a Muslim population in 20 years' time? To say I'm going to have two or three children and that's it -- that's not allowed. The way we overcome the people is through our numbers."Hey, it works for cockroaches. That's what I like about Islam - the stability.
The approach of outfits such as MoveOn.org is so juvenile it's laughable. Imagine if every political organization created litmus tests for news organizations before agreeing to appear on their programming. Republicans would have boycotted PBS, CBS, NBC, ABC, National Public Radio and The Associated Press decades ago.As Don Surber points out, the Democrats have just allowed the weirdest among them to take all their best and brightest off the most-watched cable news network in the nation. How's that for winnnig strategy?
This hyperventilation results from the fact that far-left Democrats have no comparable media outlet, nor any widespread national appeal, for their radical views in favor of heavy-handed regulation, wealth redistribution, diplomatic capitulation and economic protectionism. So they attack their rivals' messenger with a reckless barrage of rhetoric that cuts down their own allies with friendly fire.
10 March 2007
Despite earlier pledges of fiscal restraint, DFLers in the Legislature are proposing increases in the income tax, gasoline tax, sales tax, liquor tax and license tab fees, along with new levies on lead paint, gravel, deeds and cosmetic surgery. It's unlikely that all of them will get passed. If that happens, the total would approach $3 billion for 2008-09.Three billion in new taxes. Shit, Larry, why shooting so low? Come on; soak the people like you've got a set.
"You cannot have new investments without new revenue," said Senate Majority Leader Larry Pogemiller, DFL-Minneapolis.No wonder he got eleceted - he's a rocket scientist. Of course he and the rest of the socialists never campaigned on this heist, but when can you expect any truthiness from Minnesota Democrats.
Tax proponents argue that a boost in state revenues would produce better schools, fewer traffic jams, lower property taxes and better health care.Of course; lots of societies have taxed themselves into prosperity. For instance . . .
"We knew this would happen," said House Minority Leader Marty Seifert, R-Marshall. "Hold onto your purses and wallets."
"It's hard to raise taxes," (Rep. Tom Huntley, DFL-Duluth) said Friday. "We know what needs to be done. We can't do most of what needs to be done on health care without a tax increase. But it takes a lot of political courage."Democrats are often flummoxed by situations that require courage, but with a majoiry in both houses, there's little worry on their part.
Politicians are absolutely impotent without the ability to spend taxpayer money. Really; name ANYTHING a politician has accomplished that didn't cost you and me money. No proper Minnesota lefty is going to stand pat on the size of government, because big, fat government is the legacy of these unimaginative pinheads. What a bunch of frauds.
Let's see - The Gophers walked over Alaska-Anchorage 6-2 last night, which, honestly, is like the Yankees beating the Royals but it was a thumping that'll likely be repeated tonight.
In the high school tournament, Duluth Marshall defeated defending Class A champs St. Thomas Academy 3-2 in the second OT frame. Dano Jacques had the trick, including the goal that sent it to OT, and the eventual game-winner.
In Class AA, Grand Rapids were up 3-0 on Burnsville in the third, let 'em back in to tie it up, then dispatched them 4-3 in OT. I always love it when teams come down from the iron range and take care of buisness with the giant metro-area school.
By the way, they had 19,006 in the Xcel Energy Center last night for semi-final high school games, about 2K more than they announced in Columbus last night (vs. Dallas) and about 5K more than in Washington (vs. Carolina), never mind how many really showed for up either.
All this action almost made us miss the fact that the Wild owned the Sabres last night. Playing the 2nd in 2 nights, they hung 4 even-strength goals on Ryan Miller and 1 on Ty Conklin while the Wild were shorthanded 5-on-3. Certianly not top form from the Eastern Conference leaders, but a great win 5-1 win for the Wild and Josh Harding, the #3 netminder.
08 March 2007
Unsuccessful in his attempts to goad Moore into a fight, the six-foot-three, 242-pound Bertuzzi skated up behind his smaller adversary, grabbed a handful of jersey and used his free hand to knock Moore unconscious before piling atop the fallen player. When the ensuing melee finally ceased, Moore was being carted off on a stretcher . . .
"When you are picking an Olympic team, you are picking people that represent your country and what your country is all about for the world to see," Moore said. "My impression would be somebody like Sidney Crosby, that would be somebody who Canada would say, 'This is what we are all about.'"
07 March 2007
It just like when they 'got' Martha Stewart: Because of either slanted or stupid coverage in the mainstream press, 99% of men-on-the-street thought Stewart had been convicted of crimes involving improper securities transactions, which isn't true. In the Libby matter, it's too bad that the coverage so follows the same flawed template; always repeating the 'outing of CIA agent Valerie Plame' as part of what Libby was supposedly being tried for.
Mr. Wilson was embraced by many because he was early in publicly charging that the Bush administration had "twisted," if not invented, facts in making the case for war against Iraq. In conversations with journalists or in a July 6, 2003, op-ed, he claimed to have debunked evidence that Iraq was seeking uranium from Niger; suggested that he had been dispatched by Mr. Cheney to look into the matter; and alleged that his report had circulated at the highest levels of the administration.
A bipartisan investigation by the Senate intelligence committee subsequently established that all of these claims were false -- and that Mr. Wilson was recommended for the Niger trip by Ms. Plame, his wife. When this fact, along with Ms. Plame's name, was disclosed in a column by Robert D. Novak, Mr. Wilson advanced yet another sensational charge: that his wife was a covert CIA operative and that senior White House officials had orchestrated the leak of her name to destroy her career and thus punish Mr. Wilson.
The partisan furor over this allegation led to the appointment of special prosecutor Patrick J. Fitzgerald. Yet after two years of investigation, Mr. Fitzgerald charged no one with a crime for leaking Ms. Plame's name. In fact, he learned early on that Mr. Novak's primary source was former deputy secretary of state Richard L. Armitage, an unlikely tool of the White House. The trial has provided convincing evidence that there was no conspiracy to punish Mr. Wilson by leaking Ms. Plame's identity -- and no evidence that she was, in fact, covert.
Good for the Washington Post to put this in the laps of the 'Gotcha' crowd. So many others are blinded by their "Get Cheney" mentality to acknowledge that the Libby convictions had nothing to do with "blowing the secret" of who Valerie Plame was/is. In fact, Plame ans Wilson are such private people both politically and professionally, the TV movie, book deal, lecture circuit, have already spooled up. You didn't miss their kiss kiss bang bang treatment in the The New Yorker, did you?
The complaint describing the Feb. 24 incident alleges that Jirell Tremon Thomas chased a crying child down the hall and into the party room, where the suspect burst into the room shouting racial slurs. He returned to his apartment, then came back (1) to the party room with a pan of hot cooking oil, allegedly burning three people. One of the victims, a 20-year-old man, sustained serious burns on his arms and face, according to the complaint. His skin was peeling when police arrived.Thank God he's back on the street, 'cuz, you know, he ain't no threat to nobody; know what I'm sayin'?
Thomas went back to his apartment but returned to the party room (2), this time with a large glass object. The complaint alleges he threw the object at the group, hitting a 19-year-old woman attending the party. She received a cut to her head but did not require hospitalization.
Thomas left but returned (3) with two steak knives and allegedly threatened to kill the party-goers, the complaint indicates. Thomas was booked and jailed Feb. 26 but was released on $20,000 bond the next day.
As a good, passive, caring, nurturing, progressive, liberal Minnesotan, I'm trying to not judge so harsh this situation. I'm not comfortable with the fact that poor little Jirrel is faces formal legal proceedings. He's no criminal; he's just a guy who made some bad decisions.
And the Grand Canyon 'tis but a ditch.
05 March 2007
I can only imagine the highly-charged meeting in some hotel suite where it was decided that Bill would be let out into the sun. Ultimately he joined her, as she attempted to be the blackest woman in Selma.
Race as an industry is so unappealing.
HF1213 - would make you walk farther from a bus stop to find a prostitute. Penalties that used to apply to parks and school zones would be expanded to one block from any public transit stop as well as child care centers.It's times like this that I'm reminded of the words of Captain Willard (describing the Vietnam War) from Apocolypse Now: The shit piled up so fast you needed wings to stay above it.
HF1275 - puts $1.4 million into the St. Paul public transportation system to take children to ballparks and rec centers after school to get regular exercise, as well as to libraries. Rep. John Lesch wants to be sure we take advantage of the hooker-free bus stops. And in case you didn't know St. Paul had parks and rec centers, Rep. Carolos Mariani has a bill to spend a quarter-mil advertising them, HF 1277.
HF1385 - Because Minnesota's flag isn't good enough. We need A TASK FORCE (when a committee just won't do, it's a task force for you!) From Tina Liebling of
Rochester and (who else!) Phyllis Kahn.
HF1547 - How dare you not contribute your tax refund to the state election fund!? Asst. Majority Leader Steve Simon is so concerned about this he wants to add another $750,000 from the general fund.
Minnesota Democrats - Who says you can't legislate manitory bliss and happiness?
New Orleans has filed a claim for $77 billion in damages against the US army corps of engineers for building levees incapable of withstanding Hurricane Katrina, leading to the devastation of large parts of the city.
That works out to $158,869.67 for every one of the 484,674 people who lived in New Orleans as of the 2000 Census. But in the massive floods of 1993, levees broke up and down the Mississippi — and no one sued. They rebuilt. Total damage in 9 states was $15 billion. This guy wants $77 billion for one city? Nagin failed to evacuate his city in a timely and orderly manner. This is legal looting.
Only $1 billion of the $77 billion the city is seeking from the Army Corps of Engineers is for infrastructure damages it says it suffered because of levee breaches during Hurricane Katrina. The rest is for such things as the city’s tarnished image and tourist industry losses. Says Mayor Ray Nagin, “We got some advice from some attorneys to be aggressive with the number, and we’ll see what happens,” he said.
In Katrina's wake, Louisiana politicians and other critics have complained about paltry funding for the Army Corps in general and Louisiana projects in particular. But over the five years of President Bush's administration, Louisiana has received far more money for Corps civil works projects than any other state, about $1.9 billion; California was a distant second with less than $1.4 billion, even though its population is more than seven times as large.
(H)undreds of millions of dollars have gone to unrelated water projects demanded by the state's congressional delegation and approved by the Corps, often after economic analyses that turned out to be inaccurate. Despite a series of independent investigations criticizing Army Corps construction projects as wasteful pork-barrel spending, Louisiana's representatives have kept bringing home the bacon.
For example, after a $194 million deepening project for the Port of Iberia flunked a Corps cost-benefit analysis, Sen. Mary Landrieu (D-La.) tucked language into an emergency Iraq spending bill ordering the agency to redo its calculations. The Corps also spends tens of millions of dollars a year dredging little-used waterways such as the Mississippi River Gulf Outlet, the Atchafalaya River and the Red River -- now known as the J. Bennett Johnston Waterway, in honor of the project's congressional godfather -- for barge traffic that is less than forecast.
03 March 2007
02 March 2007
On Thursday, the Lubbock, Texas city council voted to delay installation of red light cameras after a local television station exposed the city's short timing of yellow lights at eight of the twelve intersections where the devices were to be installed. "Many folks believe this is a money grab and then we found out through KCBD Television there's a discrepancy in timing,"So no one has bothered to look into preventing more crashes by adding a bit of time to the yellow cycle. They went right to the plan to issue after-the-fact tickets from a glorified vending machine only because it raises revenue. On top of that, the yellow cycle is/was to be shortened to issue even more tickets for even more revenue.
Earlier this month, (KCBD) cited the rule-of-thumb that Lubbock City Engineer Jere Hart asserted as the basis for timing lights at city intersections. At most of the proposed camera intersections, Hart did not follow his own rule.
At 82nd and University, the 50 MPH speed limit suggests the need for a 5 second yellow, but it currently set at just 4.3 seconds. At 82nd and Frankford, the speed of traffic requires 4.5 seconds of yellow, but the public is only given 4.0.
Short yellows assure a steady flow of red light camera ticket revenue. A Texas Transportation Institute study found that an extra second of yellow time added to the current ITE formula yields a a 53 percent reduction in the number of tickets issued along with a 40 percent reduction in accidents.
More and more, we elect and appoint people who know and care nothing about freedom, liberty, the role of government or pragmatic civic management. These people are only motivated by the glory they think will be due them as they ram bullshit through. Bullshit, chosen by them, that represents the way they think things should be, regardless of legality or common sense.
Foreign Affairs Minister Alexander Downer rejected Senator Brown's bid to become part of the official 50-member Australian delegation, so he is using frequent flyer points to get to Johannesburg.Anyone who's got that many miles, according to Gore & Co., Inc., must have a carbon footprint must be the size of Borneo.
Senator Brown said he plans to meet other greens and environment ministers at the world summit on sustainable development, which has attracted 65,000 environmental experts and lobbyists from 189 countries. The Howard Government has very much got its head in the sand," Senator Brown said. "Its got the coal industry with it. Its got the big manufacturing industries - they don't want to cut back on their greenhouse gas emissions.Right . . .and flying 65,000 people to one place is cutting back how?
You must believe that this disaster can be prevented with fluorescent light bulbs, whirring cars that run on pixy dust, methane traps strapped to the hindquarters of cows, and magic federal dollars that invent new forms of energy by virtue of being congressionally bequeathed. You must believe that ruining the American economy will somehow convince India and China to ruin their own.
There's also a curious form of self-loathing involved in the lights-off movement, a revolutionary's hatred of the old order's glories. Once the bright lights of a city stood as a sign of civilization, a candle that cast out the night and brought the boon of Prometheus to every humble shack; now darkness is a sign of enlightenment. The sensitive soul who feels the planet's ceaseless shrieks in all his various chakras is supposed to feel relief when the lights go off, as if darkness is aloe on a burn.
Why, look at those satellite photos of North Korea at night. State control of energy usage, no industry, no cars, no messy pointless "freedom'' to hurt our one and only Mother. Seen from above, it's utterly dark.
01 March 2007
Washington - Brooks Laich shootout miss
Tampa Bay - Vincent Lecavalier shootout saved
Washington - Tomas Fleischmann shootout saved
Tampa Bay - Brad Richards shootout saved
Washington - Alexander Semin shootout saved
Tampa Bay - Martin St. Louis shootout miss
Washington - Alexander Ovechkin shootout saved
Tampa Bay - Vaclav Prospal shootout miss
Washington - Jiri Novotny shootout saved
Tampa Bay - Filip Kuba shootout miss
Washington - Kris Beech shootout saved
Tampa Bay - Ruslan Fedotenko shootout saved
Washington - Ben Clymer shootout saved
Tampa Bay - Eric Perrin shootout saved
Washington - Brian Pothier shootout saved
Tampa Bay - Ryan Craig shootout saved
Washington - Donald Brashear shootout saved
Tampa Bay - Dan Boyle shootout saved
Washington - Matt Bradley shootout saved
Tampa Bay - Nick Tarnasky shootout goal
Left work early, since no one was there. Shovelled the wet'n'heavy for about an hour, ate some dinner with Mrs. Octane and am now enjoying a Molson along with Walter Love.
Sure, I some times think it'd be fun to have a monster 2-stage job with lotsa power, but I'm just obstanent enought to think that shovelling builds character (Who am I kidding? One more dump like this and I'm off to Sears).
Sure, it's a bit tough to get around, but I do have the Blizzaks.
While Democrats try to restrict how President Bush can spend the $100 billion he wants for Iraq, they also hope to load his measure up with $10 billion in add-ons -- from aid for Great Plains farmers to help for children lacking health insurance and better levees in New Orleans.Just another gem from the Democrat-controlled congress that'll be long forgotten before the next election cycle.
House Minority Leader John Boehner, R-Ohio: "Our focus must be on supporting our troops in harm's way -- without strings attached -- not on using a military spending bill as an excuse to fund pork-barrel projects and other unrelated projects."
Bush and GOP leaders on Capitol Hill managed to keep prior war funding bills largely free of such pork when Republicans controlled Congress. Now that Democrats are in charge, the party's leaders are eager to use the cost of the war as leverage to force Bush to accept spending that the GOP has killed in the past.
WASHINGTON, Feb 14 (Reuters) - Billionaire investor George Soros said on Wednesday he bought 2.1 million shares of CVS Corp, and 1 million shares of Rite Aide in the fourth quarter of 2006. Soros also added 1.9 million shares of Halliburton and 1 million shares of Take-Two Interactive Software to his portfolio during the quarter.
After losing innumerable certification elections and seeing its steady decline in numbers, Big Labor is turning to the U.S. Congress to secure crucial changes that will rig the game in its favor and allow it to force workers into unions.Labor unions make up 10 of the top 15 contributors to all political candidates. All 10 lean strongly (70%-89%) to Democrat candidates. The fact that now Big Labor is getting its way in spite of public sentiment should not surprise anyone.
Under existing law, before a union is recognized, an employer has the right to request a federally supervised secret ballot election. This allows both the union and the employer to make their case and lets workers decide on a union without fear of reprisal.
(H.R. 800) would allow unions to organize via so-called “card check” campaigns, in which union representatives can collect signatures to form a union without any privacy protections. A recent McLaughlin poll found that 89 percent of the public prefer the current process to the card-check procedure, and a recent Zogby poll found that 78 percent of union members prefer the current process to one with less privacy protection.
Why are Democrats discarding principle and pushing for such an undemocratic, unpopular measure? Because Big Labor, one of their key constituencies, is desperate.