Sunday, September 18, 2005

Whither Razorbacks

What do SMU, Rice, Fordham, U.S. Military Academy, U.S. Naval Academy and Duke have in common?

They all used to be nationally ranked, nationally recognized college football programs that are now little more than cannon fodder for the present stable of football machines. Fordham, perenially a ranked team back in the '30s and '40s, is now a Div. I-AA program.

Could Arkansas be going that way, big enough to be a Div I-A school, but never again to be a big-time football school?

Time will tell, I guess. I don't think Houston Nutt can be the person needed, though.


Thursday, September 15, 2005

My pick for the weekend

USC 55

Arkansas 6

Sad, innit?

O Razorbacks. How thy laurels have tarnished.

Boy, am I disappointed.

I got very discouraged listening to John Roberts answer Chuck Schumer's questions regarding the Commerce Clause and congressional power.

When asked by Schumer whether the Congress is entitled to great deference with respect to its findings of fact that a purely local activity, even when it is not dealing in commercial activity, has a substantial impact on interstate commerce, Roberts said <yes!

I hate that!

Congress has been given way too much deference over the years in legislating where the Constitution gives it no power. The whole point behind Lopez and Morrison is that Congress cannot simply cannot stack a pile of paper a mile high showing how having a gun within 1000 feet of school has an effect on students' ability to learn which affects their ability to get a job later on which has a cumulative effect on interestate commerce, or how rape, forever a local mattter, affects women and that affects their ability to earn and spend, ad infinitum, and that has a cumulative effect on interstate commerce, blah blah blah, and that that gives Congress the right to intrude in local matters.

And then Schumer brings up Wickard v. Filburn, 317 U.S. 111 (1942), and both smile and nod to each other about how solid a case that was. Oh, yes, Roberts says, the cumulative effects test in a commercial activity is cool.

Twaddle. That case marked the starting line of Congress' further entanglement into virtually every area of people's lives. And for what? "Oh, we need national solutions for national problems." Horsenuts! To the extent that that if what the Founders believed that, they certainly wouldn't have agreed to the Leviathan that the national government has become thanks to this Silly Putty view of the Commerce Clause.

I don't necessarily think we need to go back to the Lochner era, but Lopez and Morrison were the first attempts to put the brakes on the ever-expanding (and unconstitutionally expanding) national government. I do not get a sense that Roberts gets this.

And so it goes so frustratingly on.

Wednesday, September 14, 2005

The Arkansas Razorbacks quiz

The Arkansas Razorbacks Quiz

What's the difference between the Arkansas Razorbacks and the Taliban?
The Taliban has a passing game.

What do the Arkansas Razorbacks and Billy Graham have in common?
They both can make 70,000 people stand up and yell "Oh, God!"

How do you keep a Arkansas Razorbacks player out of your yard?
Paint it to look like an end zone.

Where do you go in Fayetteville in case of a tornado?
Reynolds Stadium - they never get a touchdown there.

Why doesn't Little Rock have a Div 1A football team?
Because then Fayetteville would want one.

Why was Houston Nutt upset when the Razorback playbook was stolen?
Because he hadn't finished coloring it.

What's the difference between the Arkansas Razorbacks and a dollar bill?
You can still get four quarters out of a dollar bill. (Think the Vanderbilt game.)

What do you call 47 people sitting around a TV watching the Bowl Championship Series?
The Arkansas Razorbacks.

What do the Arkansas Razorbacks and possums have in common?
Both play dead at home and get killed on the road.

(pinched and modified from here.

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

I wish

I worked for myself, or was independently wealthy, or was getting paid for this blog (as you can see from the low counter number, no one reads it). Then I could have live-blogged all day on the Roberts hearing.

But I've had a long day, I didn't get to see any of the hearings (I'm just watching the replay even now), and all of the professional bloggers or those with jobs that allow considerably more time to devote to blogging have sucked up all of the oxygen on the story.

C'mon, folks, just give me some money.

I'm tired. I'm going to bed.

N.B.: Roberts' smooth lawyering style has given despair to both the left and the right. The left is sure that Roberts is just another Scalia or Thomas by failing to say outright, "No, I would never vote to overturn Roe!" The right is becoming more afraid that's he's another Souter by all of his lawyerly non-speak about stare decisis and the expectations of the people and all that.

I'm afraid he'll be more of a Souter than a Scalia. I think there must be something in the air conditioning in Washington that, once you become unaccountable and unanswerable to anyone and live in a veritable cloistered atmosphere, you tend to drift to a more liberal way of thinking, the Constitution as written be damned.

The Commerce Clause does NOT permit the federal government to do anything it wishes. C'mon, Jack-man. Just say it!

Monday, September 12, 2005

Oh, this is rich!

LA Times columnist Ron Brownstein actually suggests that President Bush nominate (snicker, snort) a Democrat to replace Sandra Day O'Connor.

As bloody if. That someone would actually offer such a proposition is just plain moonbatty.

This is more of that "we gotta have ideological balance on the Court" claptrap.

Brownstein has the temerity to assert the following lickspittle:
Much of this history seems directly on point today. Like Truman, Bush faces a lopsided partisan imbalance on the court (if he names a Republican to succeed O'Connor, the GOP will hold seven of the nine seats).
Brownstein is only technically correct. Seven of the nine would have been appointed by Republican presidents, but if anyone believes that Stevens (Ford) or Souter (Bush 41) or even all of the time Kennedy (Reagan) are by any stretch of the imagination conservative, then he's just plain nutty. Or is on something. Just because one is appointed by a Republican doesn't mean squat. I will bet that if Bush 41 had it do to over again, he would NOT nominate Souter the second time 'round.

Brownstein the Dreamer then uses the Eisenhower experience in nominating William Brennan as an example Bush could (should?) follow.
Eisenhower thought he could broaden his political appeal by reaching across party lines, and he encouraged his attorney general, Herbert Brownell, to find someone conservative, Catholic and a Democrat. Two out of three isn't bad: Brownell came back with William J. Brennan Jr., a Catholic Democrat who proved to be a liberal titan during his more than 33 years on the court.
All the more reason for Bush to NOT take Brownstein's advice.

(Note that Brownstein can't find any examples of such crossover more recent than the Eisenhower Administration, 50 years ago.)

Name me one Democrat who would seriously consider naming a Republican to the Supreme Court, all in the name of "unity" or "ideological balance."

Oh, well. I guess when you're a liberal Democrat so far removed from power your have to use a telesscope to see it, any port in a storm will do. Might as well make the suggestion. Whaddya got to lose?

UPDATE: The bloggers over at Confirm Them also mentioned this funny column.

Sunday, September 11, 2005

For September 11, 2001

(moment of silence)

Lord God Almighty, who hast made all peoples of the earth for thy glory, to serve thee in freedom and peace: Grant to the people of our country a zeal for justice and the strength of forbearance, that we may use our liberty in accordance with thy gracious will; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Ghost, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

O Judge of the nations, we remember before you with grateful hearts the men and women of our country who in the day of decision ventured much for the liberties we now enjoy. Grant that we may not rest until all of the people of this land the benefits of true freedom and gladly accept its disciplines. This we ask in the name of Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

O God, the protector of all that trust in thee, without whom nothing is strong, nothing is holy; Increase and multiply upon us thy mercy; that, thou being our ruler and guide, we may so pass through things temporal, that we finally lose not the things eternal. Grant this, O heavenly Father, for the sake of Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

O Almighty Lord God, who neither slumberest nor sleepest; Protect and assist, we beseech thee, all those who at home or abroad, by land, by sea, or in the air, are serving this country, that they, being armed with thy defence, may be preserved evermore in all perils; and being filled with wisdom and girded with strength, may do their duty to thy honour and glory; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

O God, who seest that in this warfare we are seeking to serve thee, and yet in the waging of it must needs do many things that are an offence against thy love; Accept we pray thee, our imperfect offering. Arm us with thy Spirit that our warfare may further the victory of thy justice and truth; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Almighty God, Father of mercies and giver of all comfort; Deal graciously, we pray thee, with all those who mourn, that, casting every care on thee, they may know the consolation of thy love; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

(The first prayer can be found here and the last four come from A Prayer Book for Soldiers and Sailors from WWII.

Click here too.

Friday, September 09, 2005

Recommended reading

This is some good stuff explaining to the "Civics for Dummies" crowd why the federal government legally can't do what everyone thinks it should have done in the wake of Katrina.

Besides, the blog's name, Strange Women Lying in Ponds, is pretty cool.

Listen here.

Thursday, September 08, 2005

Now, this has to be the most asinine thing I've seen since Tuesday.

We've heard all the knocks against John Roberts, he's anti-civil rights, anti-woman, anti-this, anti-that (and worst of all, has been associated with the dreaded Federalist Society), blah blah blah. But this has to be the most ridiculous, asinine, and egregious waste of perfectly good newsprint (or bandwidth): John Roberts is too perfect.

Richard Cohen, obviously at a loss to find something substantive to criticize him for (one supposes because all of the substantive arguments just haven't panned out for 'em), comes up with this example of unrivaled moonbattiness.
I wish that John Roberts had a touch of my incompetence. . . . His record is appallingly free of failure.
Appallingly free of failure. Let that one sink in for a moment.

Cohen concludes with this:
If I had a vote in the Senate, I would not deny it to Roberts based on his lack of tough times -- nor, for that matter, would I have granted one to Clarence Thomas, who had plenty of them. But when it comes to civil rights, to women's rights, to workers' rights, to gay rights and to the plight of the poor, I would prefer that Roberts had had his moment of failure. He will lead one branch of the government. I wish he knew more about all of the people.
The snottyness of liberals knows no bounds. It even extends to those who are actually better than they.

Did I not say it yesterday?!?

I said it yesterday in listing the various things I blame for all of the post-Katrina sturm und drang. I blame, in part, our "CSI" culture.

Here's Arianna Huffington making my point.

Look, if we've learned anything from watching shows like CSI, Law & Order, and their endless progeny, it's that you can't let a crime scene grow cold. You've got to start collecting and analyzing the evidence while the DNA is still fresh and let David Caruso or Vincent D'Onofrio start sweating the perps while the passions are still running high.
Spare me! A crime? Pray, what penal statutes were violated in all this (unless you want to count Louisiana's Homeland Security Department specifically preventing the Red Cross from delivering supplies to the Superdome or NO convention center)?

I just wonder (sometimes it keeps me up nights): What colour is the sky in the moonbats' world?

Wednesday, September 07, 2005

Mike Huckabee President 2008: Announcing 'Bloggers For Huckabee'

Mike Huckabee President 2008: Announcing 'Bloggers For Huckabee'

Well, whaddaya know.

OK, I'm down.

My blame game.

Everyone in Politicalville is talking about whom to blame for Katrina and its effects. The Lefties want all of the blame to lay squarely at the feet of President Bush, and want him impeached. (Don't believe me? Go check out the moonbats over at DU. I'm too tired to link; you can go find it your bloody self.) The Righties want most of the blame placed on Gov. Blanco and Mayor Nagin. I'm getting sick of it. I'll tell you where the blame truly lies, and let thhat be the end of it.

The blame lies in our instant society. Our "microwave, high-speed internet, instant communication, instant coffee, how dare you make me wait, I want it now" society. We have become so accustomed to getting what we want, and getting when we want it, and raising holy cain when we don't. Does anyone understand what it takes to mobilise the federal government in men and material (and materiel)? It doesn't happen overnight. A behemoth like the federal government can't just "spring into action" like that. That's why state and local governments are supposed to be the first responders because they can act more quickly in the face of a disaster. (That's why, I have seen reported, that Mayor Nagin purportedly told his citizens that if they chose to stay to not expect any help for the first 48-72 hours.) So when the federal government doesn't swoop down immediately and save the day like like some sort of governmental Batman, our people get outraged.

The blame lies in our "CSI" entertainment culture. People have grown accustomed to seeing teevee and movie actors do incredible (and totally unrealisitic) things with men and technology that we expect that government in the real world to do the same. (I know I've seen this argument somwhere, NRO perhaps, in the context of juries who fault criminal prosecutors for not having hi-tech DNA or other lab analyses.) "We have all of this technology and are the richest country in the world; why can't we do 'X'? Why can't we use all of our technology and know-how to make the world a utopia where no one ever need suffer again?" "If Harrison Ford can single-handedly defeat a group of armed terrorists who have taken over Air Force One, using nothing but guns and guts and flying great airplanes, and do it all in two hours, why can't we protect people from natural disasters?" Our expectations are way too unrealistic.

I blame Franklin Roosevelt and the rest of New Dealers who, perhaps unwittingly, planted the seed that has firmly teken root that government is and should be the solution to our problems; that there's no problem that the government can't fix. "Why doesn't the government do this; why doesn't the government do that?" We have created a dependency nation. We expect government to solve all of our problems and we get mad when it doesn't. Setting aside constitutional issues and our system of dual-sovereignty, people today seem to place their faith in the almighty power of government the way the ancients used to in their sun god, moon god, rain god, and no-dirty-wax-build-up god. Government is here to protect us from enemies (human enemies), foreign and domestic, and to generally keep order. Government's power is greatly diminished in the face of an immense natural disaster (that is, unless you don't mind waiting a few days and weeks and months). People no longer see "Uncle Sam," they see "Mommy" that they want to hold their hands, kiss their foreheads and make everything better. I blame people who won't do for themselves, expecting "Mommy" (or Batman) to come save them from their foolish mistakes. People who can't do for themselves will, unfortunately, have to suffer in the short-term until help can arrive unless those who can lend a hand.

I jointly blame the immediately aforementioned New Dealers, our courts, and our nation's general lack of knowledge of basic civics for being completely ignorant about how our federalist system works. The national government does not have the constitutional authority to swoop down into a sovereign state and take over, not without that state's government ceding that authority or without the president declaring martial law in the face of an insurrection. Of course people expect that the federal government can come and go and do as it will wherever it will. They've seen it happen all too often and the courts have allowed it (just ask Mr. Filburn). But that's not how our system is designed.

I blame myopic, two-faced people who want to grant government all power to do "X" and then express horrors if government takes all power.

I blame people who live in disaster-prone areas and then cry for aid when disaster hits. Do it if your want to; pay the price for your choice. I live in a tornado prone area (although we haven't had one in years, thank God). If I get whacked by a tornado, I have to make do with whatever provision I have made for myself. If I live on the Atlantic seaboard or Gulf Coast, I should expect to be hammered by a hurricane, and I should make provisions. If I live by a river bank, I should expect it to flood from time to time. If I live on a fault, I should expect earthquakes. If I live on an unstable hillside or bluff, I should expect mudslides. You get the picture. You don't want to take those risks or adequately prepare yourself for them? Go live in an area that doesn't experience those natural phenomena.

That's who I blame. Now let us never speak of it again.

Saturday, September 03, 2005

William Hubbs Rehnquist, R.I.P

Chief Justice Rehnquist has died. Very sad. He was a brilliant legal scholar and was quite right in his views of federalism and the proper constitutional limits of central government power. I'll write more about him later.

Now, if you hear the news that the chief justice has died and your first thought is about impeaching the president and vice president, you just might be a DUer. Some examples from DU's thread on Rehnquist's passing.

Contact your lawmakers and demand his immediate impeachment (and Cheney's, too)
And immediately following:
GET * OUT of the Whitehouse! FROG MARCH HIM!

Then there's this gem of sheer moonbattiness:
Retake Congress in 2006, impeach Bush and Cheney and use a resignation and appointment strategy to get either Gore or Kerry to be Speaker of the House. One of them can then appoint the other as Vice-President. Then pack the court like Roosevelt tried to. Otherwise, it's fascism or civil war or fascism and civil war.
I thought the LLL hated war. I better check with Mother Cindy about that.

How about this:
Dems Must Fight for the Life of the Nation - NOW!
Bush has never been weaker! He is vulnerable. The Democrats must now find courage and fight against any Bush appointment. First things first - Democrats and loyal American Republicans in the Senate must demand that the entire Bush Administration resign now for gross crimminal [sic] negligence for the Iraq War and the lack of preparation and response to Katrina. The blood of thousands of Americans killed and maimed in Iraq and on the Gulf Coast is on their hands. 9/11, Iraq and Katrina happended on the Bush Administration watch - whether from ignorance, incompetence, arrogance or crimminal [sic] malfeasance, the results are the same. They must be held accountable and forced to resign in disgrace. They are killing us and the country cannot wait for a Democratic Congress after the 2006 election and possible impeachment. The Bushies,all of them, every elected and appointed member of that administration must be shown the door, NOW!

The Democrats must not cooperate, compromise or give-in to anything from this corrupt, immoral, deadly administration. We must fight them on every front and persist with resolve until they are gone!
I swear, I'm not making this stuff up.

We need to push for impeachment now more than ever. The meme should be "if a man would kill poor people in New Orleans for politics, why should we allow him to appoint TWO judges for the Supreme Court." Eben the Repubs are beginning to bandond ship, so it is possible.

Impeachment should be the major thrust of the Sept 24th protest. Forget the zillion-and-a-half issues that ANSWER brings to the fore. Impeachment due to incompetence should be the message. We have more than enough evidence.

And a moratorium on all political appointments until then. It is clear from Bush's appointmnt of Brown as head of FEMA. That guy is as useless as [teats] on a bull.
Stop it, please! Yer killin' me!

Now here's a post on a thread about the passing of the chief justice. Except this post never mentions Justice Rehnquist. It does, however, as I guess every DU thread must at some point, blame the coming end of the world on George W. Bush.
Even some republicans would vote for [impeachment] now. My only hesitation, is there a real chance of winning any election from now on? I begin to doubt it since the republicans control the legislature, the courts, the executive, and most importantly, the voting machines. Some of us have foreseen insurrection in our future for the last four years. It looms large now.

That having been said I wonder if it really matters at this point. The economy will take a possibly fatal blow from the disaster at the gulf coast. Not only NO was destroyed, Biloxi and other cities were cut off at the knees. This will certainly be a belly blow to the economy. The lack of sufficient petroleum will also have a drastic effect. And don't forget the fact that Iran is starting it's own oil market and diversifying into the euro among other currencies, so the dollar will no longer be the fiat currency of trade. And that will HURT!

Then there's global warming. With arctic ice disappearing at such an alarming rate it can't be long before the salinity of the north atlantic goes low enough that the atlantic conveyor is turned off. At that point it's Katie bar the Door. No one knows the results of that except that europe will get cold. And we can be sure that the weather here will not be the same. Those areas that we depend on for growing food won't support that anymore. Where our sustenance will come from is anyone's guess.

As you can tell, I'm not very positive about our future. And I blame it all on George W. Bush.

Some call him the Anti-Christ.

Not me.

I call him Shiva, Destroyer of Nations.

Again, I thought this was the thread about the passing of the chief justice of the Supreme Court. Sheesh.

Then there are the outright haters.

Sorry. No respect.
Spit on him and his family. You think differently?

Words cannot express.

Of course, no DU thread would be complete without the conspiracy theorists worming their way in.
How soon do we get the autopsy results to check for "carcinogens"...
Makes one wonder it [sic] his death was "hastened"... Hope they do a full checkup in detail on this and that Fitzgerald gets to see the results!

One wonders if they would say these same things outside the echo chamber.

Thursday, September 01, 2005

Now I'm getting mad

The liberals are absolutely giddy over the carnage wrought by Katrina. Not for the despair it has brought to the people of the Gulf Coast, per se, but because they have yet another bludgeon they hope to use against the administration, Republicans, and essentially anyone who is not one of them.

Don't believe me? Read this.

We can justifiably criticize * [Read, President Bush -- ed.] all we want - even the MSM is on board - and we cannot be accused of being unpatriotic or not supporting our troops.

Or this.
bush gassed his own people through his malicious neglect and contempt.

The libs are as excited about this as they claimed Bush was about 9-11.

But let us make one thing clear: We WILL politicize this issue.

The Republicans did not shirk from making political use of 9/11, and we should not shirk from reminding the country that Bush turned what should have been a mere problem into Ragnarok.

Conservatives may accuse us of lacking taste if we use this sad occasion to point out sadder facts of political life. Cable news pundits will try to pretend that now is not the time for partisan politics.

If they say that, screw 'em.

If the Bush-voters want Californians and New Yorkers and other blue staters to fork over dough, then they damn well had better take our words as well. Republican policies caused this catastrophe. Force them to hear that message -- again and again. That message is the price of the charity they now demand.

The Brad Blog, another LLL site.

Andrew Waldon over at Moonbat Central was spot on with this observation:

For Moonbats, everything is about them and their politics. So it comes naturally that this hurricane is just another political prop to use in arguing for their favorite scheme or ideological “nuance.” Just as communism (and fascism) consist of self-appointed bureaucrats who impose themselves over everyone else–Moonbats out of power seek to use any and all disasters to impose their ideology on the rest of us.

Thus, we are already hearing the peanut gallery screaming, "See? Global Warming!" "See? Bush cut taxes for the rich and cut funding for the levee projects!" "It's all his fault! Everything is always his fault!"

An aside: About that middle thing. It is true that the Bush Administration cut (cut or simply reduced the rate of growth? With the way the word "cut" has been abused in Washington, you can never be too sure) U.S. Army Corps of Engineers levee project funds. But so did the Clinton Administration. It just hasn't been a high priority within the Beltway.

Both the Bush and Clinton administrations proposed budgets that low-balled the needs. Local politicians grabbed whatever money they could and declared victory. And the public didn't exactly demand tax increases to pay for flood-control and hurricane-protection projects.

AP Analysis: Politicians Failed Storm Victims. Politicians of both stripes, mind you.

Anyway, the libs' desparation is clearly showing as they try to use anything, even a major tragedy, to weaken the Bush Administration. If they keep it up, they'll only end up weakening themselves.

Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Now I'm devastated.

Seeing the pictures out of New Orleans, Biloxi and Gulfport is simply devastating. Those poor blighters. While I stand by my comments re: the attitudes toward looting and all, I can't help but feel so badly for the people who have lost everything.

Look at this satellite photo of New Orleans (three cheers, lads, to Pundit Guy who had the photo first).

The big blue spot is Lake Pontchartrain. The blue areas (underneath the clouds) is New Orleans. (Click on it and then blow it up to full size and you can see better.)
I mean, Holy Pete!

That being said, I'm exceedingly annoyed by the liberals who are trying to make political hay from these people's tragedy. Surely everyone by now has read or heard of Robert F. Kennedy Jr.'s outrageous post over at HuffPo where he insinuated that Misssissippi suffered the enormous destruction because its now-governor Haley Barbour implored in 2001, back when he was still a Washington player, President Bush to forget the Kyoto Accords. Drudge has had it up for two days now.

The sheer sophistry of his post is absolutely astounding. His post is essentially saying that Barbour's Mississippi got its just desserts because of his actions. But it doesn't just stretch but completely snaps credulity to believe that even if Kyoto had been adopted in 2001 that any benefits that would accrue from such adoption a mere four years ago would have done thing one to stop Katrina's effects. And even if we had fully complied with Kyoto since 2001, Eurpoe hasn't done a damn thing, and let's not even get into China or India. So what good would our having adopted Kyoto have done to the thousands now suffering?

And then there's this enviro-wackaloon who essentially blames every weather pattern on global warming. This yutz states:
The hurricane that struck Louisiana yesterday was nicknamed Katrina by the National Weather Service. Its real name is global warming.

When the year began with a two-foot snowfall in Los Angeles, the cause was global warming.

When 124-mile-an-hour winds shut down nuclear plants in Scandinavia and cut power to hundreds of thousands of people in Ireland and the United Kingdom, the driver was global warming.

When a severe drought in the Midwest dropped water levels in the Missouri River to their lowest on record earlier this summer, the reason was global warming.

In July, when the worst drought on record triggered wildfires in Spain and Portugal and left water levels in France at their lowest in 30 years, the explanation was global warming.

When a lethal heat wave in Arizona kept temperatures above 110 degrees and killed more than 20 people in one week, the culprit was global warming.

Well, isn't that special?

Then he states:
Although Katrina began as a relatively small hurricane that glanced off south Florida, it was supercharged with extraordinary intensity by the relatively blistering sea surface temperatures in the Gulf of Mexico.

Except that he doesn't anymore know that than a bag of dead rats.

I saw this guy, an environment professor at UVa, who has studied this stuff (OK, no shouts of, "Ah ha! Logical fallacy! Appeal to authority!" He's a professsor, so I 'spect he knows more about the subject than I) on one of the myriad cable talking head shows. He said that water surface temperature only explains about 10% of a given hurricane's severity. That leaves some other factors to explain that remaining 90%.

The leftists are absolutely giddy regarding Katrina and their hope that they can bully anyone who is not a similarly inclined leftist into swallowing their bugle oil. I find their putting partisanship over simple decorum galling.

You too?

Tuesday, August 30, 2005

I got rights to other people's stuff, I've been oppressed

Man, I am totally appalled.

Maybe I shouldn't be so harsh. What the people of New Orleans and Gulfport and Biloxi is beyond my realm of experience. I mean, I've survived a tornado, but that didn't take out an entire city, leaving virtually nothing.

And our flawed, broken nature leads usto do bad things, like taking advantage of a crisis to do some looting.

But what I read in the story linked above saddened and appalled me. Read:

NEW ORLEANS - With much of the city flooded by Hurricane Katrina, looters floated garbage cans filled with clothing and jewelry down the street in a dash to grab what they could.

In some cases, looting on Tuesday took place in full view of police and National Guard troops.

At a Walgreen’s drug store in the French Quarter, people were running out with grocery baskets and coolers full of soft drinks, chips and diapers.

When police finally showed up, a young boy stood in the door screaming, “86! 86!” — the radio code for police — and the crowd scattered.

Denise Bollinger, a tourist from Philadelphia, stood outside and snapped pictures in amazement.

“It’s downtown Baghdad,” the housewife said. “It’s insane. I’ve wanted to come here for 10 years. I thought this was a sophisticated city. I guess not.”

And more:

Around the corner on Canal Street, the main thoroughfare in the central business district, people sloshed headlong through hip-deep water as looters ripped open the steel gates on the front of several clothing and jewelry stores.

One man, who had about 10 pairs of jeans draped over his left arm, was asked if he was salvaging things from his store.

“No,” the man shouted, “that’s everybody’s store.”

Here's the worst part:

Mike Franklin stood on the trolley tracks and watched the spectacle unfold.

“To be honest with you, people who are oppressed all their lives, man, it’s an opportunity to get back at society,” he said.

It's this last quote that gets me. See what he's saying? If you've been "oppressed," then you have some sort of blank check to get back at "the Man" (even if the Man's store you're looting is owned by someone who is far from wealthy and is just as likely to be living month-to-month, too).

I blame people like Jesse Jackson, Al Sharpton, Louis Farrakhan, and the various socialists for this kind of attitude. These types have making a great living feeding people with the notion that they are "oppressed" and laying the ground work for these kinds of beliefs of "the entitlement of the oppressed" to take root.

If you've been told every day that you're oppressed and your misfortune is all the fault of someone else, society, of course it's going to lead to such acts of "getting back at society."

Monday, August 29, 2005

Major League Moonbats

It's a thoroughly sick and twisted thing on my part, but I love lurking over at the Democratic Underground boards. I know that a lot of my posts are dealing with the some of the absolute wackaloon things they say. This blog isn't intended as a kind of DU Watch (see this), but sometimes the things the DU denizens post are just so completely outrageous or otherwise moonbatty that sunshine (or at least my little spectrum of it) must be shone upon it.

For your consideration:

Apparently New Orleans police had made some arrests for looting or the Louisiana National Guard were on alert to prevent any possible looting. Now, I learned as a small child that stealing is wrong. But to the anarcho-socialists at DU, it is not only OK but even desirous that the poor in The Crescent City steal food from local markets.

Don't believe me? Read here and here.

A few of my more favourite quotes:

[A]fter a disaster like Katrina I think the rich mans rules can stand to be relaxed a bit.

And A few hot plasma TV's sold at a pawn shop,could make for a couple months of prepaid food and rent an security deposit while you move out and look for work in a new place swarming with other refugees also looking for work while out of town.And in this shitty republican economy getting work is not so easy now..
Didya ever consider THAT might be a reason for stealing plasma TV's?

Apparently, the form of killing whereby property owners withhold life-saving property from those in need of it is A-OK with you, by your own admission.

Now, this is not to say that all of the DUers are permissivist when it comes to crime.

This is a case of some [a--holes], who are probably well fed and who can afford to buy food, using the cover of the storm to go on a crime wave.

But I mean, seriously....

Friday, August 26, 2005

None dare call them liberal

I've been avoiding posting on this Cindy Sheehan nonsense, in part because I've been so busy and in part because the target is just too easy.

But I had to chime in today, after reading this post in Wednesday's PowerLine blog.

John Hinderaker takes the AP's Angela Brown to task for her not-so-subtle cheerleading for Sheehan. The post dealt with this story, dated August 24, by Ms. Brown. Hinderaker made this observation:

The article concludes with an outright whopper:

Sheehan and other grieving families met with Bush about two months after her son died last year, before reports of faulty prewar intelligence surfaced and caused her to become a vocal opponent of the war.

Hinderaker goes on to explain how this graf (paragraph in the newspaper biz) is patent nonsense.

So what does Ms. Brown do in today's installment of her Sheehan rooting, a story concerning Sheehan taking her Merry Pranksters show on the road? See for yourself (scroll down to the last graf):

Sheehan and other grieving families met with Bush about two months after her son died last year, before reports of faulty prewar intelligence surfaced and caused her to become a vocal opponent of the war.

Expect to see this graf at the end of each of Ms. Brown's stories about Sheehan until her editors finally wake up.

Also, Ms. Brown adds this graf:

Conservative activists and military families also were en route to Crawford from California on a tour called "You don't speak for me, Cindy!" The caravan coordinated by Move America Forward plans to hold a pro-Bush rally in town Saturday.

I could not find anywhere in the story where Ms. Brown labels Sheehan and her cadre "liberals." No, she and her comrades are described as "A fallen soldier's mother" and the benign "anti-war activists." Nowhere is the reader told who is helping coordinate Sheehan's month-long protest (one reference is made to a Quaker-created exhibit now on display in Crawford).

The clear implication is inescapable: Ms. Sheehan is just your run-of-the-mill mom protesting the war; those who are now countering Sheehan are the dreaded "conservative activists" who are "coordinated."

Oh, hide the children and animals!

Update: It wasn't a charley horse

It was some torn fibers or ligaments below the calf muscle, causing bleeding into the muscle, which the muscle didn't like at all.

I'm still hobbling a bit, but not as bad as before.

Sunday, August 21, 2005

I got a charley horse yesterday.

Still hurts today. Is that normal?

The Wife and I have been watching the Thin Man series lately. My folks used to love those movies when I was a kid. I never understood them -- then. I probably was too young to understand that Myrna Loy was a total honey.

Hate is not a family value

but it apparently is a Democratic Underground one -- against President Bush and any one who doesn't hate Bush as much as they.

Seven-time Tour de France winner Lance Armstrong bicyled with President Bush yesterday in Crawford. It doesn't appear that Lance beat Bush to a pulp while screaming anti-war slogans; ergo, the DUers have decided that Lance is not fit to live and his efforts at cancer research are to be boycotted.

See the totally sick, twisted, often vulgar, hate-filled results here, here, and here.

N.B.: There are few DUers who find the visceral reaction shameful, but they are the definite and distinct minority.

Y'know, this kind of blind hatred driven by something as trivial as partisan politics can't be commented upon and have it done justice. It is something that merely has to be experienced first-hand.

Sad, truly sad. What miserable lives those folks must lead when their partisanship trumps every other human value.

Tuesday, July 19, 2005 on the Roberts nomination

Who are Roberts' enemies?

By his enemies, you will know him.

If PFAW is against him, he can't be all bad.

WinRock out as Arkansas gubernatorial candidate

OK, this really sucks.

Win Rockefeller drops out of Arkansas governor's race

Possible leukemia? Man, this really sucks. I like WinRock. He is truly a stand-up guy. Not your typical, two-faced pol, but someone who just wants to try to help.

I can vote for Asa Hutchinson. But I may not be as enthusiastic about it. I can be convinced, however.

Give me a call, Asa. Let's bat it about.

Monday, July 11, 2005

Re: Judicial nominations

A Judge With No Agenda.

John Leo puts it much better than I could regarding the increasingly nasty political fights over judges. If judges wouldn't render political decisions, instead leaving them to the political branches of government, then nominations wouldn't be such a political brouhaha.

The Democrats are directly responsible. They are the ones who have single-mindedly worked to have their liberal agenda foisted on an unsuspecting, and largely unwilling, public. They knew darn well that, if left to voters to approve of such, that their radical, socialist agenda would go down in flames like so many Hindenburgs.

Hi, all!

Just got back from a week's holiday at the lake. Quite refreshing. We had The Boy 2d's birthday party on Saturday. What a hoot! Sea-Doo rides for the kids, hitting golf balls to the island (more often into the lake), tube rides, hot dogs and cake, the works. Pretty big day for a 4-year-old.

Now back to the grind.

Friday, July 01, 2005

Justice O'Connon retires

Justice Sandra Day O'Connor aanounced her retirement from the SCOTUS today and the folks over at DU have got their knickers all in a twist. Have a giggle here, here, and here (careful, DUers are inveterate users of vulgarity, so hide the children and old ladies).

Frankly, anything that gets liberals' knickers in a twist makes me smile. Their use of hyperbole knows no limits. Even Chicken Little would look at liberals and say, "Gee, over-react much?"

Wednesday, June 01, 2005

How truly pathetic

Some DUers never cease to amaze me.

Can you believe that the 2000/2004 elections could actually cause a marriage to break up? One DUer reported that it did.

Do you know any relationships that ended because of this past election?

Part of the whole picture. He's a Republican and I'm an Independent. He voted for Bush (both times) and I voted for Gore and Kerry. He was out of work of over a year (IT) and got a job in Florida. I refuse to go there; red state mentality, ONE Bush is bad enough, etc. Just goes against my whole being of who I am and what I believe in. True Blue Northeastern. We were married 30 years.

There had to have been more to it that that. I mean, that someone's petty, partisan political positions (there's a little alliteration for you) would cause someone to end a 30-year relationship?

That's truly sad. What a miserable existence.

Media masturbation and Deep Throat

Oh, joy. The elite media, notably the The Washington Post the others trying to garner some reflected glory, are in full self-congratulatory mood over an event that happened more than 30 years ago.

The revelation of Mark Felt, former No. 2 man at the FBI, as the infamous Deep Throat of Watergate fame, have brought the elite media out in full force and in full self-important face. After the disgraces based on "unnamed sources" in the past year(CBS and Newsweek, most notably), the elite media are now in full-court-press mode to try to convince an increasingly disinterested public that it used to be relevant and should still be considered so.

"No, really, it's true. Ask anyone. We really were important. See, we helped bring down a president. If that doesn't make us important, I don't what could. Now, you'll go back to respecting and fearing us AND LIKE IT!"

As to Felt, I am not going to accept the media's hype and whitewash that he was truly a selfless man who's only interest was rooting out malfeasance in high office. He clearly had an axe to grind, he having been passed over for the directorship when Hoover died in 1972. And, not to put too fine a point on it, he did exactly what other people went to jail for, namely leaking confidential FBI information to the media. Why is he honored and others went to jail?

Also, John Dean doesn't think Felt was the only Deep Throat because some of the information The WaPo got from DT was info that Felt, as a bureaucrat out in an agency, wouldn't have had access to. No access to the White House, no access to the presidential re-election campaign. But anyway . . . .

If there's anything more stomach-turning than all of the media navel-gazing when they do something wrong is all of the media's self-congratulatory huzzahs when they actually do something significant.

Thursday, May 19, 2005

DUers crack me up

From a DU thread on animal rights and other enviro-activists being on the FBI's radar screen, we have this lovely post:

"How many people have died from their activities? That would be a big fat [edited] ZERO. Now I do not condone the actions by these groups, nor am I a member, but I certainly sympathise with their beliefs in many ways. While they may be arsonists and vandals, are they really terrorists?

Burning SUV's is now apparently equivalent to assassinations done by al Qaeda or other "religous extremists". Where are our own religous extremists on this list? Any mention of abortion clinic bombings where people HAVE died? KKK? Murderers, yup, didn't hear about them other than to say that there attacks have been declining. Could that be bacause they have gained a little traction with the ideologues in government? Hmmm....

Please explain how a minority group makes its cause known when the government turns a total blind eye and when environmental laws are rolled back; when misleading names such as "Clear Skies" are fluffed out to the public? When our pristine forests will be opened up for logging? When forests are logged under the guise of bettering the health of the forest? When habitat is destroyed for inconsequential supplies of oil that will make no impact, well except to perhaps supply the military a bit more as it smacks down the iron fist on the unsuspecting American Citizen. This country fights to expand freedom? Are you [edited] kidding me.

So, if I understand, America shouldn't be worrying about the ELF, ALF, SHAC crowds because they're mere minority protesters, and besides, the poster agrees with their ideals. But we should rather be going after Al Qaeda, as if the two things are mutually exclusive.

And, not to put too fine a point on it, but the liberals like the poster above don't want us going after Al Qaeda, either. American imperialism, don'cha know.

And finally, I haven't heard of an abortion clinic shooting or bombing in years. That's, like, so 1980s.

Wednesday, May 18, 2005

The Newsweek diversion

Leave it to the people who opine for a living to get out in (cyber)print what I'd been thinking but hadn't had the time to post.

Namely, that the whole "Blame Newsweek" for the riots in Afghanistan completely, and probably intentionally, misses the point. For once, I somewhat agree with the leftists -- Newsweek is not to blame for the riots that left people dead. Where I depart from such agreement is that neither is President Bush to blame. For examples of that, see here, here, and here.

First, and not to put too fine a point on it, the media scandal is another example of media bias against a president they (collectively) have it in for. The Koran-flushing story was one that, like the Bush-TANG story of last summer, was simply "too good to check out." As a former reporter, I know that such a mindset exists. A reporter wants a story to be true so badly that he doesn't check it out as thoroughly as he might for fear that the story might fall apart on him. The national, elite media will look for any port in a storm to denigrate President Bush, his foreign policy, and the military.

But lost in all this is who are and is really to blame for the riot deaths: The rioters themselves and the radical, militant brand of Islam that fuels it.

There has been a hundred pounds of absolute silence of any kind of condemnation, either by official Washington or the liberal press corps, of the Islam that permits, nay, encourages this kind of criminal behaviour. I remember after 9-11 how we as Americans were roundly charged to not castigate Islam for the actions of the evil men that flew planes into buildings. The CAIR types all went on the air to remind us that the killers didn't represent all Islam. That's as maybe. But now, we've been pistol-whipped into believing that we shouldn't do anything that might upset Muslims. I swear, Muslims must be more delicate and sentitive to offense than liberals, and that's saying something.

Why should the Koran get better treatment than Christian symbols? You could take the Bible into the town square, tear it up page by page and tread all over it, and there wouldn't be riots and death in the streets. You can take a crucifix, dunk it in a glass of human waste and you'll get a government arts grant for it. Again, no riots and death. Yet, there mere thought of a Koran even near a toilet facility is enough to send people to their deaths. What's wrong with this picture?

I'm tired of coddling Muslims. It's time for them to grow the hell up. And James Zogby and the folks from CAIR, before you lecture me one more time about being sensitive to Muslims and not condemning the entire religion for the acts of a few, I suggest you start directing your haranguing focus at your own people. Maybe if you could convince your Muslim brothers and sisters as to how insensitive it is to fly passenger-laden planes into occupied buildings or to strap bombs on folk and kill innocent people. Screw you! I'm not gonna dance and tip-toe around the thin-as-glass sensibilities of Muslims. Take all your money out of the bank and go buy the biggest ladder you can find to help you get over yourselves! Get your own house in order before you start telling us how to keep ours in order.

Oh, BTW, the links to those opiners I referenced in the first graf who wrote what I had been thinking before I had the chance are here and here.

Monday, May 02, 2005

SCOTUS to review Solomon Amendment

The Supreme Court has decided to review a 3d Circuit Court of Appeals decision invalidating the Solomon Amendment that barred colleges that accept federal money from keeping military recruiters from their campuses.

This is a good thing, especialy since that 3d Circuit ruling was a laugher. First, it tried to equate higher ed institutions with the Boy Scouts under the heading of "expressive associations." Boy Scouts of America v. Dale. A university is not an "expressive association" akin to the Boy Scouts. Its job is to teach in an even-handed manner.

Secondly, the Solomon Amendment doesn't stifle a university's right to "free speech." See this.

Thirdly, the federal government has long used the power of the purse to regulate behaviour. Remember the law back in the 1980s that worked to coerce the States to raise their drinking ages to 21 by withholding some federal highway money? With federal money comes federal strings. I never particularly liked that, but it is the law and it is constitutional. South Dakota v. Dole, 483 U.S. 203 (1987).

Besides, allowing military recruiters to have a table one or two days a year doesn't mean the schools are adopting the military's positions on things, anymore than allowing Tyson Foods recruiters doesn't mean the schools endorse the eating of chicken.

I find it a bit humourous that the very people that scream "inclusion and tolerance" are so exclusivist and intolerant of anything they disagree with. That's like a pacifist beating someone up for not being pacifist.

I wonder how many European cases JJ. Kennedy, Souter, Stevens, Ginsburg and Breyer will scour to find a case that will allow them to overturn the Solomon Amendment? As we saw with the Roper decision, American precedent to the contrary doesn't count for much with that cabal.

Saturday, April 30, 2005

I got new toys recently

Originally uploaded by boatswain's mate.
The wife accidentally broke our old printer the other day while cleaning it. The repair costs for such an old printer were prohibitive, so I took the opportunity to upgrade our printer to an Epson CX4600 printer/scanner. It's pretty cool. Here's a sample to the right:

However, once I got it home and opened, I learned that the printer driver and other software wouldn't work on OS 10.1 (my aged Mac operating system). It took at least OS 10.2 (Jaguar). Well, now, you can't get Jaguar anymore, so I had to upgrade my OS to OS 10.3 (Panther). It was probably long overdue anyway. Apple quit making even updates for OS 10.1 a while back.

So I upgraded the operating system. Then I found out that the printer would work with either OS 10 or OS 9 (the "Classic" operating system) but not both at the same time. Now, our word processing software on the Mac was an old AppleWorks 5.0, which only works in OS 9. But since we didn't want to have to keep switching from OS 10.3 and OS 9 anytime we wanted to print depending on the program we were using, I went out and got AppleWorks 6.0, which works in OS 10.

All that because The Wife broke the old printer. How could I be mad at her? It was an accident, plainly, and I got new toys out of the deal. Makes me want to use the Mac again instead of the Dell laptop.

The Mac is living on borrowed time. This is the last operating system upgrade it will take. Once OS 10.3 has run its course, then this computer is done. Apple just came out with OS 10.4 (Tiger) yesterday and this old G3 iMac can't handle it (no firewire port, for instance, which Tiger requires). I had to delete a lot of files just to make room for Panther.

It's called planned obsolescence. Twerps.

Wednesday, April 13, 2005

It's been so hard to post lately

OK, OK, I'm not the best blogger in the world. I'm not even a very good one. It's been so hard to post lately. It's tax season, so I've been working long hours. The Wife has been working during the days, so she has to go to meetings at night. There are things to be done here at home after work, so there's little time to blog.

Not that there haven't been things to discuss. There was the recent death of feminist blowhard Andrea Dworkin, you know, the all-sex-is-rape chick.

There's the on-going blitzkrieg to get U.S. Rep. Tom DeLay, R-Texas, for having his wife and daughter on his campaign payroll, even though such things are hardly new. Even our only Socialist congresscritter Bernie Sanders, S-Vt., gets his relatives into the act. Big honkin' deal.

There's the fight over the nomination of John Bolton to be UN ambassador. Appratently, the Dems are hoping to derail his nomination based on the fact that he once chewed out a subordinate. Stop the presses, Millie! This is what you have to fall back on when you know any substantive arguments you might make will fall flat on their faces.

No, there is plenty to write about, but it is hard, not being a professional pyjama-wearing blogger myself nor having a staff or other like-minded friends to post along with me. Nope, I'm a one-man shop, and this one man gets rather threadbare from time to time.

Now is one of those times.

Saturday, April 02, 2005

Spring forward at 2 a.m. Yay!

This is the weekend during we "spring forward" into Daylight Time. I love Daylight Time. Losing the extra hour of sleep can be a bit nettlesome, but I compensate for it by simply going to bed an hour earlier Saturday night. And then I can look forward to getting that hour back in October.

John J. Miller has a column over at NRO poo-pooing the annual switch to Daylight Time. He complains about the switch, stating, maybe sarcastically, that there is no way to "save" daylight.

OK, I'll concede that rather pedantic point. That's one reason I simply call it "Daylight Time," as opposed to "Standard Time." It's prbably better to call it Daylight Adjustment Time," since what we are doing by this annual clock ritual is adjusting the daylight we get to enjoy from the early morning, when most people are off to work, to the evening, when most people are off from work. Maybe we should call it what others do around the world, which is merely "Summer Time."

I like coming home from work and there still being enough daylight left to take the children swimming or go get in a round of golf. I like it that the sunlight isn't streaming in my bedroom window at 5:45 a.m. on a Saturday morning. Now, as a parent, I wouldn't mind seeing the return of Standard Time the weekend after Labor Day, once the back-to-school routine has kicked in. Or how about having the commencement and termination of Daylight Time coincide more with the vernal and autumnal equinoxes. But them's small potatoes.

As I understand it, legally mandated switch in time happened in America occurred in 1918 as an energy-saving measure during World War I. It was repealed, then reinstituted during WWII ("War Time").

But the fact of the matter is, most people like Daylight Time because it's fun. So the poo-pooers can just go pound sand 'til October.

Godspeed, Karol Wojtyla, Bishop of Rome

a/k/a John Paul II.

Karol Cardinal Wojtyla, circa 1975
 Posted by Hello

Now, mind you, I'm firmly Protestant, a child of the great Reformation. However, I greatly respect this Bishop of Rome, a man who armed only with faith in Christ could stand up to two of the most horrible examples of totalitarianism in modern times, Naziism and Soviet Communism, and help face them down. (I might add a third form of totalitarianism he was firmly against, that being the modern secular orthodoxy that, like Hitler's Germany or Stalin's Russia, cannot abide any form of dissent.)

He was firmly committed to his beliefs and never wavered. He was firmly pro-life to the point of opposing both abortion and capital punishment. His was a force of moral authority and certain moral absolutes that the secular zeitgeist could not shake. But he did not act like a king or prince as so many of his predecessors in centuries past used to.

Some liberals are in a bit of consternation over the outpouring of grief and cconstant media coverage of Bishop Wojtyla's final hours. You can read some of it here. Of course, some of these are the types of people who view everything through the prism of their own politics and for whom nothing transcends rank partisan politics. Thus, because Bishop Wojtyla opposed certain secularist orthodoxies, he is a man who cannot be remembered fondly or remembered for the good he did. Thus, because he dared defy these secular beliefs, he must criticised, even on his death bed. A truly sad way to exist, if you ask me.

Now, as I said, I am firmly Protestant. I do not recognise any special authority of the Bishop of Rome, I don't recognise the doctrine of papal infallibility. I truly believe in the Lutherian doctrine of the five solas, that man is saved by faith alone (sola fide), by grace alone (sola gratia), through Christ alone (solo Christus), as revealed through Scripture alone (sola scriptura), all for God's glory alone (soli Deo gloria). No one can or need intercede for us to the Father save for Christ alone. I understand that the Roman church has changed dramatically in its beliefs since Luther's day, but there are still many articles of the Roman faith I disagree with.

That being said, I truly belief that Bishop Karol Wojtyla is a godly man, has done many great things during his time on Earth to make it a better place, and, God willing, will be welcomed into the Kingdom of Heaven.

God be with you, Karol Wojtyla.

Wednesday, March 30, 2005

PFAW and Mr. Smith

People for the Anti-social Way have produced this commercial against the Senate GOP's proposal to end the filibuster on judicial nominations.

At the very beginning, they show a clip of James Stewart as Jefferson Smith from "Mr. Smith Goes to Washington" as he begins to launch into his filibuster.

The only thing is, in the movie, Jeff Smith has to conduct a real filibuster, which means in order to forestall the vote on the graft-laden Willet Creek Dam project he has to be recognised and then hold the floor as long as he can until he changes enough minds or gives up.

Not today. Now we have the "gentlemen's filibuster", where all one senator has to do is state his intention to filibuster and that's it. They can then all go home and have their scotch and Maalox. No one has to get the floor and hold it and try to talk a bill to death. Major wimps.

PFAW want to keep the filibuster? Fine. Let's go back to the one Jeff Smith used. Let's see how long the Democrats would last if they had to keep the floor 24-7 to filibuster a judicial nomination, thereby preventing anything else from coming to the floor.

Let's do it. Jolly good show, what?

Krugman's off his medication again

I swear, I think Paul Krugman, the New York Times' op-ed columnist ostensibly to represent the lunatic fringe, has seriously become unbalanced. Check out his column from yesterday. He tries to connect the Terri Schiavo case with political assassinations.

In a line that is the very epitome of guilt by association, Krugman insinuates that the Schindlers' "spokesman" Randall Terry of Operation Rescue fame is wholly suspect because of the actions of a former associate.

Randall Terry, a spokesman for Terri Schiavo's parents, hasn't killed anyone, but one of his former close associates in the anti-abortion movement is serving time for murdering a doctor.

There you have it. One of Terry's former associates is in the pokey for murder, ergo, Terry is just as guilty. Oh, Terry hasn't killed anybody, but wink wink, nudge nudge.

And then at the very end, Krugman says:

America isn't yet a place where liberal politicians, and even conservatives who aren't sufficiently hard-line, fear assassination. But unless moderates take a stand against the growing power of domestic extremists, it can happen here.

The man is certifiable. Does anyone with more than two brain cells to rub together actually think that he is speaking anything even remotely resembling reality. I mean, is there anyone out there who's not a part of the ANSWER looney left cadre who reads his stuff and thinks, "Wow, that's really insightful analysis?"

No, Krugman needs analysis -- on an industrial-strength couch.

Ahoy, mates, get this man his lithium salts!

Tuesday, March 29, 2005

A dear friend e-mailed me last week

when I was knee deep in my trial prep, with the following message.

Man, I’m quite disappointed. I’ve been checking your blog, and apparently, you have chosen NOT to discuss the whole Terri Schiavo situation. I mean, you have no problem attacking liberals or democrats when they do something stupid, why not at least MENTION the stupidity of the right-wing republican factions that are trying to make a mockery out of the judicial process. Thankfully, the balance of powers is at work, lest Jeb Bush have anything to say about that. What, you can give it but you can’t take it?

I love my dear friend, her being a Democrat notwithstanding. Can't say I'm not open and tolerant, eh?

I have resisted posting about the Terri Schiavo case, in large part because of my own conflicted feelings about the case. I do believe that people should be able to decline such life-saving measures if they want to. I have a living will. I have made it quite clear to my family that I don't wish any of that nonsense if I'm so incapacitated. My dear departed father also rejected such measures, even though it might have meant lengthening his life by a unknown amount of time. I firmly believe that such extraordinary measures are more for the benefit of the survivors than the patient.

I don't know what Terri Schiavo said or didn't say. I don't know whether she would have wanted to live as she is, as her parents contend, or that she would not have, as her husband contends. I don't know whether a feeding tube could be considered "extraordinary measures," unlike a respirator. I do believe that matrimonial bonds generally should take precedence over the parent-child relationship. I suspect when Terri married Michael, her father "gave her away" as is traditional. That act sublimates the parent-child bond to the husband-wife bond. The two had become one, and all that.

Now, on the substance of my dear friend's e-mail. I'm not wholly sure of what she was referring to when she wrote about the "stupidity of the right-wing republican factions that are trying to make a mockery out of the judicial process." I assume she meant the congressional efforts to intervene in the case, despite the Florida state courts' numerous rulings in the case.

I generally opposed the effort to nationalise the case, even though, as I understand it, all the bill the Congress passed did was to give the federal courts jurisdiction to review the case. Living wills and these kinds of situations have been the province of the States and should remain so. But I thought it odd that Democrats, mostly the more liberal ones, in Congress, were arguing against federal court review of the case.

You see, it has long been the position of liberals to make any violation of individual rights or individual injustice to the federal courts. State courts, it was argued, couldn't be trusted to protect the helpless and powerless.

Well, here we had a case of a helpless woman facing starvation and dehydration as a manner of death, and liberals couldn't elucidate their opposition to federal court review loudly enough. The question is why?

I don't believe for a minute that this matter, as far as congressional participation is concerned, has been a case of state v. federal courts or any of that nonsense. I'll tell you what I am convinced this case is, as far as the national politicos hope to use it.

This is a proxy for abortion. The Republicans are using this case as a way of playing to their pro-life base and to bolster their pro-life bona fides in an arena outside of strictly abortion. And the Democrats opposing this oppose it for the opposite reason: They see that to allow government intervention into this matter to save a life could serve as a precendent to allow it in to save other life as well. And that the Democrats cannot allow to happen even one iota.

(An historical aside: Did you know that the expressions "not one iota" or arguing over every iota has its origin at the Council of Nicea, AD 325, where the raging debate was between St. Athanasius, who argued that Christ was "of the same substance" of God the Father (homoousias) and Arius the Heretic, who argued that Christ was "like the same substance" of God (homoiousias)? So the main source of controversy in one of the most important meetings in the Christian era was over the iota.)

So the whole injection and protestation of Terri Schiavo's case in the national political arena was for nothing more than politics, abortion politics.

See, Harry Blackmun? You thought with your twisted opinion you could remove abortion as a political issue by giving constitutional cover, just like Roger Taney thought he could remove slavery from the political sphere with his warped opinion. Didn't work then. It won't work now.

Free at last, free at last!

Thank God Almighty, I'm free at last!

(That's my favourite MLK line from the March on Washington speech.)

I finished a federal court jury trial today. I had spent the past two weeks getting ready. That's why the hiatus from posting. But now it's over, and I can get back to my normal life (until the next trial).

Wednesday, March 16, 2005

I think the DUers are going to have kittens

Democratic Underground scurvies are about to explode. Don't stand near one when it happens; the goo is hard to get out of clothes and hair and stuff.

What's got their knickers in a collective twist? The thread really doesn't say, but I 'spect it has something to do with ANWR.

Read Post # 28 for a good chuckle.
I think the time has come for some very serious action. We have been marching en mass for over four years now and have seen little result.

I think it is time for mass civil disobedience -- be it national strikes, sit-ins, or other non-violent actions.

I mean just how much longer do we let this go on, folks??? Really? When do we say enough? When do we say "I'm mad as hell and I'm not going to take it anynore?"

I think I am there.

Oh, good-o! A DU national strike, all 500 or so of them. That'll show us.

Like I say, these guys are such a hoot!

The Revolution will not be televised. Film at 11.

Wonder how long before the ACLU gets hold of this

It seems that Ashley Smith may have acted unconstitutionally in her efforts to capture Fulton County courthouse killer Brian Nichols.

It would seem that Ms. Smith referred to God and the Bible as she talked to Nichols.

During the 13 hours police say Nichols held Smith hostage, Smith also shared her faith with him. At one point, he asked her to look at him and see that he was already dead.

"I got a bible and a book called the Purpose-Driven Life," Smith said, "I turned it to the chapter I was on that day, Chapter 33, and I started to read the first paragraph of it."

See also, this.

Smith, 26, said she gained Nichols' trust by talking to him about her 5-year-old daughter, God and hope.

I expect an ACLU lawsuit just any minute asserting that her efforts in helping the government catch Nichols are unconstitutional and that Nichols should be released because of her improper use of religion. Or at least Smith should not be eligible for her share of the reward money.

"There should be no invoking of a deity in the assisting of government to catch a poor misguided young man, a victim of society," I expect the ACLU's brief to read. "A private citizen, acting in furtherance of governmental ends, can no more violate the separation of church and state than the government can in achieving those ends."

Saturday, March 12, 2005

The sistahs they forget

It's an axiom among liberal groups that Republicans are to be opposed, slandered and otherwise vilified for whatever they do -- even if they achieve the ends the liberal groups want.

Case in point: the professional Feminists. Read this.

For many years before September 11, 2001 – and much to their credit – Western feminists tried to rouse a sleeping world to the plight of women in increasingly radical Islamic countries. In the US, it was the Feminist Majority that pressured president Bill Clinton to impose sanctions against the woman-hating Taliban regime; it was feminists who first publicised the horror of genital mutilation in Muslim Africa.

But in the months after the attacks on New York and Washington, as Westerners gradually woke to the strange vocabulary that went with jihadism – burkas, veils, honour killings, stonings, forced marriages – feminists went uncharacteristically mum.

Here was the perfect opportunity to convince a stubborn public that remained ambivalent about feminism – in the US, only about one-third of young women accepted the label for themselves even as they opened their own businesses and maintained their own cheque accounts – yet in the communiques from feminist offices the phrase "Islamic extremists" was barely uttered.

Why the relative silence on a subject that would seem to epitomise feminist concerns? Because in the eyes of the sisterhood, worse than stoning women for adultery or forbidding girls to go to school are the policies of white men such as George W. Bush.

You see? The PF (professional Feminists) wanted Bill Clinton, the guy they liked, to do something about the Taliban and their policies towards women. He didn't. George Bush comes along and he does in the aftermath of 9-11. Apparently to the PF, the liberating of women in Afghanistan suddenly became less important that opposing a Republican president.

The article continues:
[I]f Muslim men could be said to oppress their women, it is the fault of Western imperialists or, more specifically, Western men. "When men are traumatised [by colonial rule], they tend to traumatise their own women," says Miriam Cooke, a professor at Duke University in North Carolina. From this vantage point, feminists must condemn not just war in Iraq and Afghanistan but any instances of what Columbia University professor Gayatri Spivak calls "white men saving brown women from brown men".

But wait, weren't the PF calling on Bill Clinton to do something to save brown women under the Taliban, ostensibly a group of brown men?

Oh, right, Bill Clinton was an honorary black man. Never mind.

I've talked about this very weird phenomenon before. It is strange.

OK, so I ain't a pro

It's been hard to keep the site updated the past few days. Work has been trying of late, and it's just a busy month altogether. I have two hearings and a trial, all in the second half of the month. Thus, it has been hard to keep the site free-flowing with my random nonsense.

I'll try to do better, but I'm not making any promises.

Wednesday, March 09, 2005

American Exceptionalism

America is an exceptional nation. We are not a run-of-the-mill country. We are different. We do not feel beholden to the diktats that other countries feel the need to impose upon their people, or on other countries. We are set apart. We are, as de Tocqueville wrote "marked out by the will of Heaven."

I began to think about American exceptionalism when I read this column over at Tech Central Station. It's about why America ratifying the Kyoto Protocol or some other similar nonsense would be disatrous for America, and that when the technological changes come that eventually do cut emissions, it will be American technology at the fore. It won't, nor should it, be foisted at the point of a gun.

The thought of American exceptionalism reminded me of a series of articles published back in 2003 by The Economist. They are all about, you guessed it, American exceptionalism.

One of the articles leads off with this quote: “Everything about the Americans,” said Alexis de Tocqueville, “is extraordinary, but what is more extraordinary still is the soil that supports them.” The piece goes on to explain why European-style socialism, much less communism, has never caught on here.

But exceptionalism has another meaning: that America is intrinsically different from other countries in its values and institutions. . . .

In 1929, Jay Lovestone, the head of the American communist party, was summoned to Moscow. Stalin demanded to know why the worldwide communist revolution had advanced not one step in the largest capitalist country. Lovestone replied that America lacked the preconditions for communism, such as feudalism and aristocracy. No less an authority than Friedrich Engels had said the same thing, talking of “the special American conditions...which make bourgeois conditions look like a beau idéal to them.” So had an Italian Marxist, Antonio Gramsci, and a British socialist, H.G. Wells, who had both argued that America's unique origins had produced a distinctive value system and unusual politics.

Lovestone was purged, but his argument still has force: America is exceptional partly because it is peculiar.

It is when I think of how truly unique, how truly blessed we are as a nation, that I thank God that I was allowed to be born here, allowed to live here, allowed to share as a native son in this exceptional country.

Where are we?

I'll let the reader figure out which one we're in (I'll give you a hint, it's the second guy with the crown). Posted by Hello

Three cheers, lads, to Chuck Asay for another fine cartoon.

Tuesday, March 08, 2005

An inspired choice

President Bush has nominated John Bolton to be America's ambassador to the UN. I think that's an inspired choice.

Notlob, er, Bolton has been a vocal critic of the "world body," which has degenerated into little more than a mechanism for graft and a third-world debating society. I think we can safely conclude that Mr. Bolton won't go to New York and play footsie with this dysfunctional organization.

UN delegates have been their usual nonsensical selves.

"I hope that once he is here he will have a deeper perception of what the U.N. is about," Chinese Ambassador Wang Guangya said.

Which is what, now? How to enable petty despots and thrid-world potentates how to line their pockets? How to talk for hours upon end and achieve absolutely nothing?

Algerian ambassador Abdallah Baali said, "I think when he joins the United Nations he will certainly adapt his views to the United Nations, and I am sure we will work together in a very constructive way."

I don't want him to adapt his views to the UN. The UN has rotted down to its roots. Even their aid programs, which the UN used to be pretty good at, have become little kitties for the bureaucrats to skim from.

I don't believe for a moment that Mr. Bolton will be able to change the UN. Its corruption and ineptitute are deep seated. But at least it can be hoped that he won't just sit quietly in that oh-so diplomatic way for fear of injuring the delicate sensibilities of some delegate from a backwater dictatorship and call a spade a spade.

Monday, March 07, 2005

No posting tonight.

I'm not well.

That's the trouble with being a lone blogger. There's no back up when you get sick or busy.

Keep comin' back, though, please.

More on injudicious diktat

George Will has an excellent column today on how Anthony Kennedy, in his Roper v. Simmons, 543 U.S. ___ (2005) decision, played the role of legislator, sociologist and moralist.

At the end, Will writes:

The Democrats' standard complaint is that [Republican] nominees are out of the jurisprudential ``mainstream.'' If Kennedy represents the mainstream, it is time to change the shape of the river. His opinion is an intellectual train wreck, but useful as a timely warning about what happens when judicial offices are filled with injudicious people.


Why do we even bother to have a Congress or state legislatures at all, if the court can step in and say, "Here's what national policy is. You'll take this and like it."

Based on Kennedy's decision, what is to stop the Court, or any court, from, say, imposing higher taxes in order to comport to our "evolving standards of decency." Sure, Article I of the Constitution gives Congress the power to levy taxes, but what is that when there is a "national consensus" (as defined by the court -- indeed it apparently doesn't even take a majority of states to create a "national consensus), or when the Europeans are doing it, or when there are several studies before the Court stating that raising taxes would be a good thing.

That's what is so disturbing about the Roper decision. It wasn't based on law, which is what the Court is supposed to look at. It was based on feelings, personal opinions about what is proper, studies, all those things that are proper for a legislature to consider. If a Court can base decisions on those extra-legal materials, then there is nothing to stop them from ordering anything, whether they have the constitutional authority to do so or not, except their own grace.

That's partially why we broke away from Britian in the first place.

Sunday, March 06, 2005

Remembering Jim Gordon.

No, he's not dead, yet.

I was driving to church this morning, and "Layla" by Derek and the Dominoes came on the radio. The song was co-written by Eric Clapton and Jim Gordon. Actually, I believe Clapton wrote the first past and Gordon composed the instrumental theme at the end.

I get choked up everytime I hear that song, not because of Clapton writing it his love, and then-wife of his friend George Harrison, but because of what happened to Gordon years later.

Gordon was a top session drummer in the late '60s and early '70s. He played with the best of that era, Clapton, Harrison, John Lennon, Joe Cocker, Frank Zappa, Harry Nilsson, and Jackson Browne.

Here he is at a rehearsal. Posted by Hello

Of course, he took copious amount of drugs, as did most of the top musicians of the day. But that wasn't his real problem. His real problem was with schizophrenia.

He had been hearing voices for years, especially that of his mother's. In 1983, the voices got to him and he murdered his mother. He pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity, but he was convicted and sentenced to 16 years to life in the California prison system. He actually spends most of his time in Atascadero State Hospital.

It's sad to think of such a musical talent being brought down by mental illness and the things he did for lack of treatment. That's why I get choked up when I hear "Layla" and that hauntingly beautiful theme at the end.

Excepts from a July 3, 1994, article on Gordon.

Saturday, March 05, 2005

Now that's funny!

Do I make myself clear? Posted by Hello

Go get 'em!

Update: PowerLine has a story about gunfire at a protest march, fire coming from pro-Syrian thugs. Posits that the weapons play may have been on purpose to give the Syrians a reason to stay in Lebanon to "restore order" or some such.

(Let's hear it for Powerline, lads! Hip hip hooray!)

Fear and loathing in Paris

I generally despise France, and have rarely found the French, on my travels there, to be exactly friendly, be ye Americain or not.

I generally agree with John J. Miller and Mark Molesky that France has been our oldest enemy. See also Denis Boyles' Vile France: Fear, Duplicity, Cowardice and Cheese. The term "cheese-eating surrender monkeys" wasn't just coined by chance.

But aside from their wines, more specifically Bordeaux, and even more specifically Margaux, I have found one other saving grace:

Coralie Clement.

Totally fine. And that breathy whisper-style singing is enough to make even that Carson guy switch sides.

Here's Coralie's picture from her website.

Coralie Clement Posted by Hello

Listen to the song that launches when you go to her website. Something else.

OK, I'll concede France that point. R-r-r-o-w-w!

Marines, salute!

Friday, March 04, 2005

More Python

It seems that Eric Idle, with the blessings of the surviving troupe members, has launched a Broadway musical based on Monty Python and the Holy Grail, called "Spamalot."

The story's here.

I like Eric Idle, but a musical, and without the Pythons? Hmmmm. I'll reserve judgment on a thing like that until all the facts are in.

What has America ever done for us?

Gerard Baker, a columnist for the Times of London, and a frequent guest on The McLaughlin Group, has a column on what all America has done for Europe (and the world), which starts off with this (three cheers, lads, to Jonah Goldberg over at NRO's The Corner for finding it first):

ONE OF MY favourite cinematic moments is the scene in Monty Python’s Life of Brian when Reg, aka John Cleese, the leader of the People’s Front of Judea, is trying to whip up anti-Roman sentiment among his team of slightly hesitant commandos.

“What have the Romans ever done for us?” he asks.

“Well, there’s the aqueduct,” somebody says, thoughtfully. “The sanitation,” says another. “Public order,” offers a third. Reg reluctantly acknowledges that there may have been a couple of benefits. But then steadily, and with increasing enthusiasm, his men reel off a litany of the good things the Romans have wrought with their occupation of the Holy Land.

By the time they’re finished they’re not so sure about the whole insurgency idea after all and an exasperated Reg tries to rally them: “All right, but apart from the sanitation, the medicine, education, wine, public order, irrigation, roads, a fresh water system, and public health, what have the Romans ever done for us?”

I can’t help but think of that scene as I watch the contortions of the anti-American hordes in Britain, Europe and even in the US itself in response to the remarkable events that are unfolding in the real Middle East today.

I love Monty Python and just about any Python reference. And Baker's use of a very funny scene and applying it to real life is just icing on the cake.

Also reminds me of a scene from The Simpsons

Krusty: Aw, heck: now where am I gonna get a danish?
Bart: Here's a danish, Krusty!
Krusty: Gimme, gimme, gimme! [devours it] Now that's danish! Where'd you get it?
Bart: I stole it from Kent Brockman.
Krusty: Great! [realizes] Uh, he didn't touch it, did he?
Bart: No.
Krusty: Good job, kid! What's your name?
Bart: I'm Bart Simpson. I saved you from jail.
Krusty: [not remembering] Er, I...
Bart: I reunited you with your estranged father.
Krusty: Er, uh, I don't know...
Bart: I saved your career, man! Remember your comeback special?
Krusty: Yeah, well, what have you done for me lately?
Bart: I got you that danish.
Krusty: [grateful] And I'll never forget it.

That's the European elites in a nutshell. Ingrates.