Another cog in the wheel known as the Vast Right Wing Conspiracy to combat the Extreme Left-Wing Media.

Saturday, December 31, 2005

Happy New Years!

In a few hours we will have a brand new year to play with. Everyone is making predictions, so I'll make a few.
Life will be good for most of us. You won't hear that on the news. The news by its very nature is devoted to reporting that which is out of the ordinary. It is a good sign if it still makes news when someone does something incredibly stupid to screw up their life.
Things will continue to stabilize in Iraq. Saddam (& cohorts) will be convicted. We will reduce our troop levels and some Dem's will claim it is only because they called for a withdrawal. As things improve, politicians will be quick to assert that they were confident all along. Some like Joe Lieberman will be honest.
There will be hurricanes, but not as many or as destructive as the past year.
Price of gas will remain high and will result in a higher rate of inflation than we've seen in over a decade. Products are brought to market by vehicles which burn gas so the increase will inevitably affect the cost of everything we consume. The Fed will continue to raise interests rates until the second quarter making things worse.
Some stocks will go up and some will go down.
Republicans will retain a majority in both houses of Congress.
Howard Dean will be ousted as Dem party leader.
Judge Alito will be confirmed to the Supreme Court. Within months of Alito being sworn in another opening will emerge. I expect Stevens or Ginsburg will step down for health reasons.
In April the Browns will draft a player destined for a career threatening injury by mid-season of his rookie year.
The Cavaliers will reach the Eastern Conference finals and Lebron James will be league MVP.
The Indians will win less games than in 2005 but will be AL Central champs anyways as the White Sox take a step back to the pack.

Lastly, all of us will experience some grief this year. It happens and whether it is the little stuff like a flat tire or the major life events like the loss of a loved one, we have to accept and deal with what comes our way. I wish you all the best in the New Year, but bear in mind that the Serenity Prayer was written for a reason.

Friday, December 30, 2005

Nothing like continuity

The Browns who have had little success since returning to the league showed complete disdain for continuity today by firing their general manager Phil Savage less than a year after hiring him. Savage's strength is consider player evaluation. We never gave him enough time to find out whether he was any good.

UPDATE: Now reports out of Cleveland say he was never fired and is not going to be fired. I wonder how they broke they news to the guy with the Falcons (Ray Anderson) who was reportedly taking over.

Probing a leak that matters

Justice Department Opens NSA Leak Probe

It's about time!

Links and comments

Is Donald Trump running for the New York governor's job? He's not your standard politician but he'd have to be better than the serial extortionist who is expected to win in a cakewalk.

Jeff Jacoby examines the racist attacks of the left on black Republicans including Lt. Gov. Steele (R-MD) for having the temerity to think for themselves. Separately, there is still no apology from Chuck Schumer for his dirty tricks squad fraudulently accessing Steele's credit history.

Ferris Bueller had nothing on what this kid did on his days off.

For Christmas I received Sports Illustrated's 2006 Almanac. You would hope a reference book would be highly accurate. Well, I'm flipping through the book last night and come across a section on All Time Winningest NFL Coaches. In the subcategory of highest winning percentage they indicate that two of the coaches are active, Joe Gibbs and Paul Brown. Brown retired from coaching 30 years ago this Sunday and died 15 years ago. Sloppy.

Mike Adams gets hate mail. I liked his sarcastic responses.

Thursday, December 29, 2005

A little good news for the new year

A testament to government stupidity and waste is going away effective January 1st.
Beginning New Year'’s Day, drivers in the Greater Cincinnati and Dayton areas will no longer need an E-Check endorsement to renew their license plate registration.
You'd never convince the enviro-nuts, but E-Check had no effect on the quality of air. $20 a vehicle to have some guy use a mirror to check whether you modified the exhaust system of your car.

(h/t to Porkopolis)

Who is teaching our children?

Well, if you live in Pennsylvania it might be this character:
A Central Dauphin School District teacher faces charges of assaulting a Lower Paxton Twp. police officer and possession of illegal drugs after being arrested earlier this month while standing naked in the snow outside of his home. According to court papers, when Lofton was asked if he was okay, he responded, "No, I am ... crazy, and I need a menthol cigarette." When asked where he lived and why he was naked, Lofton is alleged to have said that he was "Jesus Christ" and that the officer must be "God," court papers say. A scuffle broke out between the two men during which Lofton is alleged to have hit the officer over the head with a long plastic toy trumpet which he scooped up from nearby. The officer used his pepper spray on Lofton, at first to no avail. Then a cursing Lofton advised the officer that "'Jesus' is now blind," court papers say.
He isn't going to be teaching anymore, is he? Well, his lawyer doesn't think this should affect his employment.
"Basically, he had some mental health issues that hopefully are in remission. I don't think it affects his ability to be a French teacher and it wasn't school-related, so we're hoping we can get him back to work," McGowan said.
The key word there is "hopefully."

Deportation of old NAZI guard ordered

As the saying around closing time goes "You don't haves to go home, but you got to get the heck up out of here."
CLEVELAND - Ending a 30-year legal battle, an immigration judge Wednesday ordered John Demjanjuk, a retired autoworker accused of being a Nazi concentration camp guard, deported to his native Ukraine.

Demjanjuk, 85, has been fighting to stay in this country since the 1970s. He was suspected for a time of being the notoriously brutal guard known as Ivan the Terrible and was nearly executed in Israel.

Chief U.S. Immigration Judge Michael Creppy ruled that there was no evidence to substantiate Demjanjuk's claim that he would be tortured if deported to his homeland. He said Demjanjuk should be deported to Germany or Poland if Ukraine does not accept him.
I'm sure if the Ukraine, Germany or Poland refuse to take him he could always apply to Israel for asylum.

Wednesday, December 28, 2005

The NEW Chief Justice

Chief Justice Roberts has been on the job for a few months now and CNN has a nice article about how he (and the court) have adjusted.
This is in stark contrast to the mood during the year preceding Roberts' arrival, when anxiety over the health of his ailing predecessor, William Rehnquist, cast a cloud over the court's mood. "The change has been amazing, the justices are a happy bunch again," said one court official, who asked not to be identified. "They joke in arguments, they joke among themselves privately. The chief was just the type of man this place needed."
It isn't hard to imagine how watching the previous chief slowly whither away affected the court.

Tuesday, December 27, 2005

What's up with Jeff Reardon

I don't remember Jeff Reardon getting in any trouble during his playing career so this news item caught me by surprise.
PALM BEACH GARDENS, Fla. (AP) -- Former major league pitcher Jeff Reardon was charged with a jewelry store robbery and held pending a bond hearing Tuesday. The 50-year-old Reardon walked into Hamilton Jewelers at the Gardens Mall on Monday and handed an employee a note saying he had a gun and the store was being robbed. Reardon fled the store with an undisclosed amount of cash. Police found him at a nearby restaurant, recovered the stolen money and charged him with armed robbery.

The four-time All-Star was 73-77 with 367 saves and a 3.16 ERA in 16 seasons.
I have a feeling that this is not going to help him get into the Hall of Fame. Drugs are not mentioned in the article but are the most likely thing to drive a guy to screw up like that.

Turns out the Hall of Fame has already passed up on Reardon. In the 2000 election he received 24 votes which wasn't enough to remain on the ballot.

Saturday, December 24, 2005

Merry Christmas to all

Merry Christmas to all (okay both) of my readers.

Friday, December 23, 2005

Another reason Burka's are a bad idea

Being a red blooded American male who enjoys the beauty of the female form I already thought the burka was a bad fashion idea. Reading this I am even more convinced it's a bad idea.
An Egyptian man discovered on his wedding day that his fiancee of three years was a man who had been concealing his identity behind a veil, the daily Al-Gomhuria reported Wednesday.
Obviously, he didn't practice the Zenith method of dating.

New Senate Investigations

D.J. Drummond of POLIPUNDIT has an advance transcript of new Senate Hearings dubbed Hollygate:
SEN. LEVIN: Getting back on track, isn’t it true, Mister Claus, that you track and record the behavior of private Americans?

CLAUS: Yes, that’s correct. I keep a list, and I check it.

SEN. LEVIN: Isn’t it also true, that you categorize the actions and words of private individuals according to your personal opinion of their merit?

CLAUS: Well, it is true that I know who is naughty, and who is nice.

SEN. LEVIN: Isn’t it true that you even observe the times that individuals go to sleep and wake up?

CLAUS: Sort of. I know if someone is really asleep or not.

SEN. LEVIN: Mmm-hmm. And tell me please, what court approved a warrant for any of these activities of yours?

CLAUS: No court. I just do it.

(murmurs of disapproval among Democrats)

SEN. REID: You have never asked for permission from even a single court to spy on Americans?

CLAUS: I never saw it as necessary.

SEN. REID: And what about this giving-out of presents you do? Who decides what a person gets, and who approves your entry and exits into and from private residences?

CLAUS: Good children get very nice gifts, bad children usually get nothing, although in either case I sometimes leave a note.

SEN. REID: So you might decide to give presents to a child whose family is already wealthy, but you might also decide not to give to a child who lives in a poor neighborhood?

CLAUS: Hypothetically, yes, that could happen.

SEN. REID: Outrageous. And just who lets you in and out of people’s homes?

CLAUS: No one. I let myself in and out.

(anger among Democrats)
It's topical and hilarious. Go read the rest.

Politician tries something new

Usually politicians rob the rest of us through the legislative process. Here is a story of one using a different tactic.
Irvington police say a newly appointed state lawmaker tried to switch pricetags on sheets and bedding while shopping at a discount store this week. Evelyn Williams was arrested on shoplifting charges Tuesday afternoon. The 53-year-old Newark resident was chosen to fill the term of Assemblyman Donald Tucker, who died in October. She represents the 28th legislative district, which includes part of Essex County. According to a report published today, Williams was caught by a security camera at Valley Fair Super Discount Center in Irvington while putting 14-99 pricetags on a 59-99 set of bedsheets and a 49-99 comforter.
Funny thing is the story completely omits any reference to her political affiliation. In a negative story that omission automatically means the politician is a Democrat. Oddly enough, when she was sworn a couple weeks ago in they remembered to highlight her being a Democrat.
Williams served four years as the first female president of the Essex County Policemen's Benevolent Association. Williams is a longtime Newark South Ward Democratic Committee leader and is involved with many local neighborhood advocacy and service organizations including the Clinton Hill "Weed & Seed" program.

Lawyers will say anything

A former basketball player is suing Penn State University claiming discrimination. The lawyer actually is claiming that the coach's policy against drugs, alcohol and homosexuality unfairly targets African-Americans.
"In pursuing her discriminatory policy — known as 'no drinking, no drugs, no lesbians' — Ms. Portland has particularly targeted players who are African-American," Harris' attorneys wrote in the lawsuit.
So, is this lawyer saying African-Americans are more prone to substance abuse or more prone to lesbianism? Or is the real answer that lawyers are more likely to attempt to steal money by filing frivolous suits.

Why Your Hometown Columnist Sucks does a regular column titled "Why Your Hometown Columnist Sucks." This week they highlighted the worst columnist in the Cleveland area, Roger Brown. Not surprisingly, the first complaint about Brown is his accuracy (or rather inaccuracy).
OK, it’s just time to say it: Roger Brown makes stuff up. That’s the word on the street anyway. When a veteran Northeast Ohio sportswriter such as Hal Lebovitz (and when we say “veteran,” we mean “was the last person to interview Custer”) levels the charge, we tend to give it weight. Said the late Lebovitz of Brown (to “I can’t compete with fiction.”
About time someone said it.

Thursday, December 22, 2005

Congratulations Omar!

Omar Vizquel has been named Captain of the Venezuelan team in the Baseball World Cup. Good choice. Looking at the list of players already named to that team I have to say they will be pretty competitive. With Johan Santana, Freddie Garcia and Victor Zambrano anchoring the pitching staff they won't need a lot of offense.

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Bill Pierce for Senate

William Pierce, a businessman and school teacher, has announced his intention to challenge Sen. DeWine in next years Republican senatorial primary. Even though I've been less than thrilled with DeWine, I normally wouldn't comment on the primary challenge because I understand how difficult it is to unseat an incumbent senator. However, DeWine's latest ill advised votes have convinced me that I could not hold my nose and vote for him next year. DeWine once again sided with Senate Democrats in opposing key legislation. The votes in question involved a measure to decrease the federal budget deficit (VP Cheney had to fly back to cast the deciding vote since DeWine voted with the Dems) and a vote to authorize drilling for oil in ANWR. Go visit Bill Pierce's website and check out his positions on the issues.

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

A case of local heroism

If you live right next to the highway you're bound to get some junk in your yard occasionally, but this is a bit much:
"I heard a noise, I looked back, and that truck was flying through the air," Newman said. "It was like an atomic bomb, it was so loud."

Newman saw a semi-truck crashing toward him, after a wreck forced the tractor-trailer off a northbound Interstate 75 overpass. It fell about three stories onto the front lawn on Shepherd Avenue. "It landed 10 feet from where I was standing," Newman said.

The truck, which was carrying auto parts, landed on its side and wrapped around a pillar supporting the overpass. Newman found the driver, Danny Faehr, of Florence, upside down and bleeding in the cab. He cut the seat belt and pulled him out. "Right as we got to the sidewalk, the truck exploded," Newman said.
Wow, if Newman hadn't been there or hadn't acted as quickly as he did Faehr wouldn't have made it to today.

Public Service Announcement

I have about forty 37 cent postage stamps left, how about you? Rates go up to 39 cents on 8 January.

The Eavesdropping Kerfluffle

Late last week the New York Times ran a story discussing one of the techniques used by the administration to monitor potential terrorist activity. Since then it has come out that the story was released then in order to help sales of a book. Also, we have had Democratic and some Republican lawmakers foaming at the mouth over the revelation that the National Security Agency is listening to conversations between US citizens and people overseas with known ties to Al Qaeda. I'm not in Peoria but I'm close enough to be able to say the average person just isn't going to get all that worked up about this for a few reasons. First, 95% of Americans don't make any overseas calls let alone calls to Al Qaeda. Secondly, most of us couldn't care less about the possibility of them hearing what we say on the phone. We realize our conversations are not what they are looking for since my wife telling me to get milk at the grocery store isn't a big deal. But beyond the lack of individual concern is the fact that the administration has explained the need for this action well enough that even a reporter should be able to understand. Most people will understand that war is not like law enforcement. Prior to 9/11, the FBI's methods was one of investigating crimes after they have been committed. Now, it is clear that it is more important to stop the attack than to obtain the evidence in a manner which will hold up in our criminal favoring court system.

The administration must continue to beat the drum on this and the president needs to keep speaking directly to the American people. If explained frequently and clearly people will understand that the main offense here was the leak of this information.

Monday, December 19, 2005

Congratulations to the Cincinnati Bengals

Wish I didn't have to type this, but congratulations on winning the AFC North Championship to the Cincinnati Bengals. I've been married to a Bengals fan for 15 years now and this is their first winning season in that time span. I can no longer razz her about that crummy team as they aren't crummy now.

Sunday, December 18, 2005

Elf Snowball Fight

Everyone needs to waste time at the holidays, right? Well, here is a fun way to do it.

Friday, December 16, 2005

Make your own digital Christmas card

This is kind of cute.

Bad news for announcers

Today the Kansas City Royals signed two players for the coming season. Immediately, their play by play announcers asked for a raise. Why? Because the players they signed were 1B Doug Mientkiewicz and 2B Mark Grudzielanek. I'm not sure those two names should even be in the same sentence let alone the same infield. Kansas City continuing their attempt to corner the market on mediocrity signed SP Scott Elarton to a two year deal. Will 1B Mike Sweeney become a full time DH or does this mean KC has a deal in place to move him?

Friday's various stuff

Heading to Cleveland this weekend so I'll throw some links out today and be gone until Monday.

I wish those pretending to be black leaders were half as smart as Morgan Freeman. Things would be a lot better in this country if everyone dealt with race as Freeman recommends.
Freeman notes there is no "white history month," and says the only way to get rid of racism is to "stop talking about it." The actor says he believes the labels "black" and "white" are an obstacle to beating racism. "I am going to stop calling you a white man and I'm going to ask you to stop calling me a black man," Freeman says.

The American Spectator has a column regarding Gov. Mitt Romney's presidential aspirations and examines whether his Mormon faith will be an issue. I may be naive but I'm going to throw the BS flag at this stuff. People base their vote on many issues and I strongly doubt many Republicans would switch to vote for the Democrat candidate instead of voting for someone they agree with on the majority of issues just because of his religion.

Tony Snow has a great column up about the Cut and Run Crowd.

Lastly, this is the only thing on my Christmas list. A new Remote Control.

Thursday, December 15, 2005

Another Execution - But Why No Protests?

This morning I read that another person was executed.
PARCHMAN, Miss. -- Hired killer John B. Nixon Sr., was put to death Wednesday night by lethal injection.

At age 77 he became the oldest person in the nation to be executed since the death penalty was reinstated in the United States nearly three decades ago.
Then I asked myself "Why haven't I heard non-stop in the news about this pending execution like with the last murderer to be executed? Why weren't Jesse Jackson, Snoop Dog, Mike Farrell, and Bianca Jaggar there protesting?" I have to assume there were differences in the cases. Let's see one difference is Nixon killed one guy where as Tookie murdered 4 people. So, do the nuts only protest if you're being punished for killing several people? Oh yeah, one murderer was white and the other was black. Could that be the difference? If so, would that be enough evidence to conclude that the people who only protested one of the two execution are racist? I won't call them all racists but some of them have thrown that claim out with less evidence.

Monday, December 12, 2005

Clemency Denied for Williams

Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger today announced his decision not to grant clemency to convicted murderer Stan "Tookie" Williams. I'm not going to rejoice in his execution. It is a shame that he committed the crimes which resulted in his death sentence. However, I'm not going to shed any tears on his passing either, except for our criminal justice system which has become so inefficient that a cold blooded murderer was able to out live his victims by over a quarter of a century.

How will Los Angeles respond? We should know by this time tomorrow.

State sanctioned murder for hire?

One of the many acts cited in the case tying Saddam Hussein to terrorism was his payments to suicide bomber's families. Now we hear that Mahmoud Abbas, Head of the Palestinian Authority has authorized a monthly payment to surviving family members of shahids (their term for martyrs). How is this any different than murder for hire?
Under the new law, the terrorist’s family will be paid a base sum of $250 per month. The law takes into account extended family arrangements commonplace in Arab societies. The families of married terrorists are entitled to an additional $50 per month, and $15 are added for each child, $25 for each parent, and $15 for each brother who lived with the terrorist prior to his death.

The monies, to be paid out of the general budget of the Palestinian Authority, are significant sums for average Arab families living in Judea, Samaria, and Gaza.
Where do they get the money to pay for these murders? Oh, that right from us.
The budget of the Palestinian Authority is largely subsidized by grants from European nations and the United States.
But we don't need to worry because Abbas says he is committed to the peace process. Yeah right, just like Arafat was.

2008 Presidential Field thins out a little

There is one less candidate that no one has heard of running for president in 2008.

Sunday, December 11, 2005

Sunday Sports

The Cincinnati Enquirer has a nice retrospective on Paul Brown marking 15 years since his passing and coinciding with the game between the two teams he founded.

After being an outsider for years, Bernie Kosar is back with the Browns mentoring rookie quarterback Charlie Frye. Good to see he is helping the kid adjust to life in the NFL.

Julio Franco was one of my favorite players growing up, but if I owned a major league baseball team I think I would fire my general manager if he gave a two year contract to a 47 year old player. At 47 his contract should be measured in days not years.

How did Texas get to be ranked number 2?

Bush won in a landslide
. No word on whether it will be called another stolen election or if there will a clamor for a recount.

Terry Pluto examines the progress the Browns have made in the last year

Sunday stuff

Mark Stein is always a must read and this week is no different as he examines the recent comments of the newest nutty dictator with his finger poised over a nuclear button.
"Some European countries insist on saying that Hitler killed millions of innocent Jews in furnaces," Ahmadinejad told Iranian TV viewers. "Although we don't accept this claim, if we suppose it is true," he added sportingly, "if European countries claim that they have killed Jews in World War II, why don't they provide the Zionist regime with a piece of Europe? Germany and Austria can provide the regime with two or three provinces for this regime to establish itself, and the issue will be resolved. You offer part of Europe, and we will support it."

Big of you. It's the perfect solution to the "Middle East peace process": out of sight, out of mind. And given that Ahmadinejad's out of his mind, we're already halfway there.

So let's see: We have a Holocaust denier who wants to relocate an entire nation to another continent, and he happens to be head of the world's newest nuclear state. (They're not 100 percent fully-fledged operational, but happily for them they can drag out the pseudo-negotiations with the European Union until they are. And Washington certainly won't do anything, because after all if we're not 100 percent certain they've got WMD -- which we won't be until there's a big smoking crater live on CNN one afternoon -- it would be just another Bushitlerburton lie to get us into another war for oil, right?)

Apparently, Oprah Winfrey is not that popular in Oceanside, California after she called the town "a hub of child sex slavery."

Los Angeles is preparing for riots in event murderer Tookie Williams' sentence is finally carried out. That's interesting, since part of the line of BS his supporters are throwing out there is that his writing has positively influenced so many youths to abandon violence. Of course, they never mention his victims or the thousands of people killed by the gang he founded.

Saturday, December 10, 2005

Wild Week for Flying

It may just be me, but it seems like there were more wild aviation events this week than normal.
Tuesday we had a military plane crash into a building in Iran.
On Wednesday there was the guy getting shot in Miami after saying bomb on an airplane, and a report of a plane crash in New Brunswick, Canada that was later determined to be false.
Thursday a plane landing in heavy snow went off a runway in Chicago thru a fence and into a street tragically killing a 6 year old boy in a car.
This morning a plane crashed in Nigeria killing over a hundred passengers most of whom were school children going home for Christmas vacation. Now tonight there is the strange story of a passenger on a plane threatening a baby and then charging the cockpit before several passengers subdued him.

Hopefully, next week will be better.

Kangaroos in Wisconsin?

In Ohio we're used to seeing stories about deer being hit by cars not kangaroos.
For Ralph Hamm, it was a "once in a lifetime thing" when he hit and killed a kangaroo with his truck Wednesday. The 50- pound animal darted in front of Hamm's truck in his rural Mauston driveway. Hamm said he didn't have time to stop.

Bill Clinton continues to lie

I know that headline won't surprise many folks. The other day there were articles about former president Bill Clinton speaking to some enviro-wacko's in Canada. He had the audacity to attribute the decision not to adher to the Kyoto protocals solely to President Bush. I meant to write about it at the time but didn't get around to doing the background research. Now, I've been saved the trouble. Jim Kouri of The Post Chronicle has written an article which examines Clinton's claims and finds them lacking in historical accuracy.

Friday, December 09, 2005

Churches Closed for Christmas?

I've never heard the term mega-church before, but if this is standard practice for them then I just don't get it.
Some of the nation's most prominent megachurches have decided not to hold worship services on the Sunday that coincides with Christmas Day, a move that is generating controversy among evangelical Christians. Megachurch leaders say that the decision is in keeping with their innovative and "family friendly" approach and that they are compensating in other ways. Willow Creek Community Church in South Barrington, Ill., always a pacesetter among megachurches, is handing out a DVD it produced for the occasion that features a heartwarming contemporary Christmas tale.
A DVD? Sounds like just another made for TV Christmas special. Some of the Christmas specials are better than the usual junk on TV but I don't see it as a replacement for attending services.

Sometimes News Travels Slowly to Arkansas

The last two national elections apparently didn't get much coverage in Arkansas.
An Arkansas man who was arrested after he jumped the fence onto the White House grounds this week reportedly was after Chelsea Clinton -- not anyone from President George W. Bush's family.

According to a court-ordered report from the D.C. Department of Mental Health, Shawn Cox, 29, thought Clinton still lived at the White House. He thought he was destined to marry her.
Besides the fact that the girl he was pursuing no longer lived there, getting arrested for scaling a security fence normally doesn't result in a first date.

Thursday, December 08, 2005

TASER has more uses than we thought

This is actually kind of funny.
An argument between two police officers over whether they should stop for a soft drink ended with the male officer using a Taser stun gun on his female partner, authorities say. A Taser delivers an electrical shock to immobilize its target.
This shouldn't be too surprising. You give thousands of people a weapon which is advertised as "non-lethal" and a few goofs will use it for fun.

More bad news for Social Security System

This can't help the Social Security solvency issues.
U.S. life expectancy has hit another all-time high _ 77.6 years _ and deaths from heart disease, cancer and stroke continue to drop, the government reported Thursday.

Today's Lifestyle Advice

Today's Lifestyle Advice: If you claim to have a bomb on an airplane you may not have much life to style.

It's a shame that the guy failed to take his medicine and went a little nutty, but I'm glad the Air Marshall acted as professionally as he did. Terrorists considering taking action involving aircraft now understand that Air Marshalls will take decisive action to neutralize a threat.

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

Applying liberal "logic" to other arguments

Here is the truth of the effect of the tax cuts.

Charlie Frye to start Sunday

The Cleveland Browns have announced that rookie quarterback Charlie Frye will get his second start on Sunday against the Bengals in Cincinnati. Last week, Frye played pretty well in the first half while filling in for the injured Trent Dilfer. In the second half the Jaguars blitzed him heavily and sacked him several times. The team needs to determine before this season ends whether Frye is the quarterback of the future. Dilfer may not like it (he doesn't) but we should be more concerned with building this team for the future than in not hurting Dilfer's feelings.

The Death Penalty and the numbers game

Last week, I noted an article which attacked the race card being applied to the death penalty. Today, Jeff Jacoby of the Boston Globe addresses the silliness of the media playing up the 1,000th person executed since the death penalty was restored in 1976.
What is it that makes victims so easy to forget? When Kenneth Boyd was executed in North Carolina last week, it was reported everywhere that he was the 1,000th murderer to be put to death since the resumption of capital punishment in 1976. But how many stories devoted more than a passing mention to the two people Boyd sent to early graves -- his estranged wife, Julie Curry Boyd, and her father, Thomas Curry? Why doesn't the media's round-number fetish extend to the victims of homicide as well as the perpetrators? If the 1,000th execution made headlines, why didn't the 1,000th murder? Or the 10,000th? Or the 100,000th?

Actually there have been close to 600,000 homicides in the United States since 1976, and the total climbs by roughly 15,000 each year. Where is the uproar over those round numbers? Where are the protests, the petitions, the Hollywood rallies aimed at stopping those deaths? I understand that some people think capital punishment is wrong as a matter of principle. What I cannot understand is how anyone can be more outraged by the lawful execution each year of a few dozen murderers than by the annual slaughter of thousands of victims at the hands of such murderers.
Jacoby as usual is right on the mark. The media resorts to tricks like highlighting a made up milestone when they know there point of view can't stand on its own. Just like when the Democrats and their accomplices in the media made a big deal about the 2,000th soldier to die in Iraq in order to attack the current administration's policies in the War on Terror. The 2,000th soldier's death was a tragedy but no more so than the 827th or any other. Do we do highlight the 2,000th traffic death each year? No, because the Media-crats haven't yet decided to attack the Bush administration over the 40 some thousand people who die in car accidents each year.

Bud Carson dead at 75

Former Cleveland Browns head coach Bud Carson, the architect of the Pittsburgh Steelers' "Steel Curtain" defense in the 1970s, died Wednesday. He was 75.

Things didn't pan out for him as a head coach of the Browns but I have no doubt that with a couple breaks going our way or more patience from ownership he could've been more successful. He took over for Marty Schottenheimer after the 1988 season and led the Browns to the AFC Championship game the following year only to lose to the Broncos. Beset with injuries to Bernie Kosar and others the team got off to a 2 and 7 start the following year and Carson was sacked. He never got another opportunity as a head coach. RIP Bud.

Baseball Winter Meetings

Major League Baseball is conducting their Winter Meetings in Dallas, Texas this week. The meetings usually involve lots of rumors but little action. The rumor to deal ratio is around 500 to 1. The Indians went into the off-season with some obvious needs. They clearly needed to upgrade the offensive production at 1B and RF. Also, several key parts of the pitching staff were free agents who either had to be resigned or replaced. The free agent pitchers were Kevin Millwood, Bob Wickman, Bob Howry and Scott Elarton. So far, the Indians have signed Paul Byrd and have seen Howry sign a deal with the Cubs. They are expected to offer arbitration to Millwood (and possibly Elarton) by today's deadline. That ensures draft pick compensation if the player signs elsewhere. I've seen criticism of the Byrd signing most of which asserted that he isn't as good as Millwood. I believe that is the wrong angle to take. It wasn't a question of Byrd or Millwood. Millwood would be no more likely to return if we had not signed Byrd. The real question is whether Byrd can help this team compete next year. Last year in 201 innings pitched, Byrd walked 28 and struck out 102. With reasonable run support and decent defense behind him Byrd should win 15 games next year and be a very good number 4 starter.
Apparently, the Indians have offered a three year deal to Trevor Hoffman. Hoffman has played most of his career in San Diego and may not be that well known to American League batters (or fans). I'm not sure how much he has left but he should be recognized as one of the most consistently dominating relievers in baseball history. Hoffman has 436 saves and a career ERA of 2.76. It is a major risk giving a three year contract to a 38 year old pitcher but I feel the third year is the price you pay to get a player to leave the great San Diego weather.

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

Mickey Mantle should have drank more coffee

This could be good news for those of us who burn the candle at both ends too often.
The study of nearly 10,000 people showed that those who drank more than two cups of coffee or tea per day developed chronic liver disease at half the rate of those who drank less than one cup each day.
I don't put a lot of faith in these studies but I like the results despite my skepticism.

Bobby Carpenter shouldn't play this soon

Ohio State linebacker Bobby Carpenter broke his leg on the first defensive play of the Michigan game on 19 November. This morning, I read that he is anxious to play in the Fiesta Bowl against Notre Dame on 2 January 2006.
``Really just to play with my teammates one last time,'' Carpenter said. ``We have a special relationship. It's really something you can't explain.''
His desire to be on the field is understandable. As a sports fan I'd love to see a great player like him in a big game especially since the Buckeyes were noted for their linebacker play this year. However, his desire to play and our desire to see a great game shouldn't outweigh the concern over risk to his future health.

9/11 Commission cries you didn't do what we told you to!

I was never a big fan of the 9/11 Commission for several reasons mainly because I assumed (correctly) that politicians would use the findings to attempt to assign blame for an event that was not completely preventable. The larger problem with panels and committees of this nature is that they feel they are infallible and that their recommendations should be followed as though they were pronouncements brought down out of the mountains carried by a bearded guy who said a burning bush gave them to him. Yesterday the 9/11 committee whined that their recommendations were not followed to the letter.
"We believe that the terrorists will strike again," the panel's chairman, Thomas H. Kean, a former Republican governor of New Jersey, told reporters in Washington. "If they do, and these reforms that might have prevented such an attack have not been implemented, what will our excuses be?"
What a self serving statement that is. In other words this guy is making sure he is on record saying "don't blame me." The problem I see with that line of BS is that short of taking isolationism to an impossible level with a 50' high perimeter fence surrounding our entire country there is no action we could take that will guarantee no future attacks. Some of their recommendations would have been useful if made prior to 9/11. However, unless the terrorists use the same method of attack again the changes recommended would not add to our security. It is easy to sit on some commission and spend money when you're not accountable to the taxpayer. We elect representatives to make the various decisions regarding appropriating and allocating funds not some appointed commission. When these commissions are appointed in the future, whether dealing with tax reform or whatever, part of their instructions should include an agreement to make their recommendations and then get back under whatever rock they crawled out from under.

Monday, December 05, 2005

How far has CNN fallen?

How far has CNN fallen? Well, here is one indicator. James Taranto, who writes the Wall Street Journal column Best of the Web, said he's going to be interviewed by Lou Dobbs on CNN this evening. I thought that since I enjoy his columns I'd tune in. Then it hit me, what channel is CNN on? We moved back to Ohio about a year and a half ago and I had no idea what channel CNN is here.

Cable Internet out all day

No new posts today as I haven't had internet access all day. At 7:30 AM they said it should be about a half hour. At 10:45 AM customer service said no idea how long until it would be fixed. At 3:15 service was restored. Maybe some postings later this afternoon.

Sunday, December 04, 2005

Saturday's College Football round-up

Some really good college football games yesterday which cleared up the BCS bowl game picture.
The top two teams solidified their position at the top of the polls winning decisively.
USC crushed UCLA 66 to 19 while Texas destroyed Colorado 70 to 3 (would have been much worse but Texas shut it down in the 4th quarter).
LSU came into the day 11 and 1 on the season, number three in the polls and with an outside chance to move into the BCS championship game. All those thoughts were washed away as they got manhandled by the Georgia Bulldogs 34 to 14.
In the sentimental game of the day the Midshipmen of the Naval Academy beat the Cadets of Army 42 to 23. This was Navy's 4th straight victory over their rival academy and they now lead the all time series 50-49-7.

Big winners on the day?
1. Reggie Bush nailed down the Heisman Trophy. Not only did Bush show once again what a great talent he is but teammate Matt Leinart had a so-so game which should end the chances of a split vote giving the trophy to Vince Young of Texas.
2. Fans who wanted Notre Dame and Ohio State to meet up in a bowl game. LSU's loss coupled with number 5 Virginia Tech losing to Florida State all but assures the Irish will face off with the Buckeyes in the Fiesta Bowl.

Saturday, December 03, 2005

The Death Penalty and the Race Card

The "Race Card" is frequently used by opponents of the death penalty. As Mark Twain said "There are lies, there are damn lies and then there are statistics." With that in mind death penalty opponents cite various statistics to bolster their claim that a disproportionate number of death row inmates are black. Gregory Kane has written a column, "The crime, not his race, put Baker on death row," which explains the situation differently.
Baker is black. His victim was white. Death penalty opponents point to that to support their claim that Maryland's death penalty is racist. They talk of a racial disparity -- blacks are disproportionately represented on death row, and they're more likely to wind up there if they killed a white person.

They also talk about another disparity: None of the blacks on death row in Maryland was convicted of killing blacks. Now let's be clear why the disparity exists. Many of Maryland's black murder victims are slain in Baltimore by other blacks, and city prosecutors seldom, if ever, seek capital punishment. The "racial disparity" is, in fact, a geographical one that proves there may be something to the adage that "geography is fate."
So it's like the three most important things in real estate "location, location, location." There may be some subtle latent racism left in our criminal justice system but there is a way to avoid that - don't do the crime.
Jane Tyson was fatally shot 14 years ago through no fault of her own. Wesley Baker is on death row today for the actions of Wesley Baker. "Racial disparity" had nothing to do with it.

Don't expect any of those clamoring for Baker's clemency to utter that truth.

Friday, December 02, 2005

What happens if you keep digging?

As they say the shortest distance between two points is a straight line. With that in mind, I remember as kids how we would say that if we kept digging we would end up in China. Well, now you can verify that at this website without the hassle of dealing with the molten core of the Earth. Well, I'm putting my shovel away, my hole would end up in the Indian Ocean.

To show what a mess lawyers have made to our society they felt the need to put this disclaimer on their site:
Attention! This site is not responsible for bank, house or any establishment assaults occured by holes made by our users.

(h/t NTT's Core Dump)

How aggressive should we be in fighting election fraud?

Certain areas of our country have long had a reputation for allowing election fraud with a wink and a nod. There is the famous quote from Joe Kennedy (JFK's dad) about the closeness of the 1960 election saying "I'm not paying for a landslide." I'm basically a law and order kind of guy but I don't want the good guys to screw with real elections in order to root out the corruption. In West Virginia the FBI ran a sting using a politician who was caught taking a bribe earlier. Basically, they had this guy pretend to run for office and then arrested the crooks he paid to deliver votes. Problem with this method is that there were real candidates running for that office. How many of the people who voted for the sham candidate would have voted for the second place finisher? You don't know? Neither do I and that's the problem.

I don't like the manner in which this case was developed, but if it scares Dems in Chicago, Detroit, Wisconsin, etc, into playing straight I may have to accept the ends justifying the means. However, I'm not naive enough to think this case will have that kind of effect.

Congratulations to the Akron Zips!

Last night the Akron Zips won an exciting MAC Championship game to advance to their first bowl game since moving up to Div. I. There were no losers on that field last night, but one team had to emerge victorious and it took some last second heroics for the Zips to overcome a six point deficit to the Northern Illinois Huskies. The Zip's best offensive weapon, senior receiver Domenik Hixon had spent most of the second half ill on the sidelines. When he returned to the game with 10 seconds left no one expected much from him. Even the announcers commented that he was probably just going to serve as a decoy so another receiver could get open. Some decoy! Six seconds later he was in the end zone with the football and Akron was going bowling.

I'd be remiss if I didn't mention the great performance of the little running back Garrett Wolfe. He rushed for 270 yards and with the game being played in Detroit it was impossible not to think of Barry Sanders when watching him run. At 5-foot-7 and 177 pounds, I didn't expect him to have much left late in the game after the pounding he took carrying the ball 42 times. I was wrong. He was strong to the end. Some NFL team is going to ignore his size and end up with great running back.

Thursday, December 01, 2005

Another case of 'roid rage?

Ben Maller has a report of Brett Boone having self-control issues in Las Vegas.
Spies tell me a tipsy Boone rolled his golf cart Monday while playing on the Wynn's $500-a-round high-roller golf course. Later, he created a scene in the bar at the Wynn's Country Club Grill. Security was called when Boone, 36, got testy with Wynn staffers after they asked him to remove his feet from the bar in an area where patrons were dining. "Make me!" replied Boone, among other choice words. When Boone fell off his bar stool and hit the floor, friends removed him from the bar before security arrived.
These are not the actions of someone looking to resurrect his athletic career.

True Bi-partisanship

One of reasons I started blogging was to identify the hypocrisy of the extreme left wing media. A recent example is how complicit the media has been in selling the Democrat's talking point about a "Republican culture of corruption." In this area, I'm not rushing to the defense of corrupt Republicans like the recently convicted Randy Cunningham of California. Rather, I'm more concerned with people getting an honest picture of how corruption by our government officials is not limited to one political party. Michelle Malkin has a link to a website that details the rest of the story - the fact that corruption is the only area of true bi-partisanship left. NoAgenda is a website which actually details all the Democrat corruption, ethics violations, shady deals and more. In other words, NoAgenda provides the news you won't see trumpeted by the MSM.

Life imitating the movies?

Last night, I watched the re-make of the 1974 movie The Longest Yard. In the new movie, some of inmates played transvestite cheerleaders for the prison football team. Now today, Greg from What Attitude Problem? points out the Raiderettes received some award for having a transvestite cheerleader. The Raiderettes are obviously the cheerleaders for the Raiders the closest thing the NFL has to a prison team. I don't think the Raiderettes will enamor themselves with the women of northern California with this comment:
The Raiderettes said that they did not set out to make history when they added the first "Tranny" to its cheerleading squad. But, much like the Raiders makeshift secondary, had to make do with the available personnel. "We had a lot more girls to choose from when we were in Southern California," said one Raiderettes official. "But have you seen some of the girls in Northern California, specifically Oakland?

Separately, why did Blogger's spell checker give me a hard time for "enamor?" It's in my dictionary.

Slamming the barn door after the horse is gone

This article, explains how Cardinal Camillo Ruini has put out guidance to priests to advise Catholics against marrying Muslims.
Cultural differences over issues such as the role of women and the education of children made such partnerships very difficult, said Cardinal Camillo Ruini, the Vicar General of Rome. In a document released to the conference of bishops yesterday, Cardinal Ruini wrote: "The experience of recent years leads us as a general rule to advise against or in any case to discourage these marriages.
Not that I disagree with Cardinal Ruini about marrying Muslims but he is off the mark here. He is too late to the process.
Cardinal Ruini expressed his concern at a growing number of mixed-faith marriages in Italy, which he called "intrinsically fragile". According to the Italian statistics office ISTAT, there were more than 19,000 such marriages in Italy last year.
If you want to stop this problem (and yes, it's a problem) you need to reach people a long time before marriage is being considered. To paraphrase my grandmother, "If you never date a Muslim you'll never marry a Muslim." Relationships don't start at the point of marriage. If you wait to explain that it's a bad idea until the person is considering marriage all you will succeed in doing is getting them to choose the marriage over the church.