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

Sunday, April 30, 2006

Sunday morning

Bunch of folks visiting today so just a few links for ya:

This is shameful
The Congressional Medal of Honor Society reports that there are 113 living recipients of the nation's highest military award, but an FBI agent said impostors outnumber the true heroes. "There are more and more of these impostors, and they are literally stealing the valor and acts of valor of the real guys," said Tom Cottone, who tracks such pretenders in addition to his work on an FBI violent crime squad in West Paterson, N.J.
Catch them an publicly out them.

This is also shameful.
The mother of a U.S. Marine was grieving for her dead son when she found that his savings account had been claimed by the director of the funeral home. It was money that he had no right to and despite a court ruling, the funeral director refused to pay. What's even more puzzling is that he's not just any debtor, he's the mayor of the small town and a member of a City Council that has financial responsibility for the city's budget.
He needs to pay back the money as ordered by the court and the city needs to remove him from any position of public trust.

This is just stupid.
For one group of expectant mothers, their due date holds an extra dimension of dread. The prospect of giving birth on June 6, 6/6/06, has prompted talk of spawning devil children on Armageddon day.
Guess what folks, it isn't the date of birth which determines whether your child is good or bad. It is how you raise them. Sorry.

Debra Saunders has a different take on the stupid idea of tomorrow being blowing off work day. Officially the supporters of illegal immigration are referring to tomorrow as National Day Without Immigrants Great American Boycott. Personally, I hope the result of the boycott is a collective yawn. If you have been getting a competitive advantage by hiring illegals and not paying all the associated costs that other employers pay to American workers I have no sympathy if your business is affected by the illegal workers not showing up for work tomorrow.

The NFL player draft is being held this weekend. The known quantities went yesterday. The players drafted today will show the difference between the GM's (and their scouts) who can evaluate talent and those who can't. Look for scoring to be lower in the AFC North as the Browns, Bengals and Ravens beefed up their defense in the first day of the draft while the Steelers reloaded with wide receivers. Too early to judge, but the Browns selections seem a little undersized and a bit of a reach for their draft position selected.

Friday, April 28, 2006

Friday morning links

A few items to read on a Friday morning:

A couple days ago, I stated that the rising gas price issue was simply a matter of supply and demand and chastised some senators for not understanding basic high school economics. Well, it is nice to have someone a lot smarter than myself say the same thing. Here is Dr. Charles Krauthammer latest column: Say It With Me: Supply and Demand. I'm not ashamed to say Krauthammer explains it better than I did.

Here is an article reminding us that there are judicial nominees still waiting on an up or down vote. Despite senators (like our own Mike DeWine) patting themselves on the back for confirming a few of President Bush's nominees, there are some that have waited several years to find out if they will be confirmed. UNSAT! The Constitution requires the senate to provide advise and consent. If they don't hold a vote they are failing in their responsibility.

In his column, SPIES & LIES . . . AND PRIZES FOR WARTIME TREASON, Ralph Peters makes a very good point about the recent Pulitzer prize.
IF a street-corner thug knowingly receives stolen goods for profit, he goes to jail. If a well-educated, privileged journalist profits from receiving classified information - stolen from our government - he or she gets a prize. Is something wrong here?
Not to be mean, but doesn't the picture of Peters look a little like Ralph Nader?

Senate races to watch

The liberal musical chairs continues. Rosie O'Donnell Named New 'View' Co-Host. So CBS replaced Dan "documents look god to me" Rather with equally liberal Katie Couric. Then NBC replaces Couric with Meridith Vieira, an anti-war protester. To finish the rotation, ABC has decided on gay marriage activist Rosie O'Donnell who has called for our president to be tried for war crimes. I had heard Patricia Heaton was being considered for the View. It's a shame, Heaton (an Ohio State grad) would have provided some class and balance to that show.

Right Wing News has a column called 10 Pieces of Advice for Republicans in Washington His second and third items are actually advice that politicians from both parties should heed.
2) America Should Always Come First: Whether we're talking about international treaties, foreign policy, or even illegal immigration, Republicans should NEVER put the interests of foreigners above those of their own countrymen. Americans should always come first.

3) Remember That There Is No Such Thing As Free Money: The money Washington spends doesn't come out of a Golden Goose or fall from the sky. To the contrary, it comes right out of the pockets of the American people and they will miss it dearly. It's money that people could otherwise spend on retirement, grocery bills, medicine or their kid's college education. That's why the government should be restrained in their spending habits, keep taxes low, and avoid running up a debt. The government isn't spending "free" money, it's spending money that people worked hard for and earned, and a lot of Republicans seem to have lost sight of that.

Thursday, April 27, 2006

Thursday notes and links

A few links for a Thursday:

My town isn't on this list is yours? Top 10 Liberal Cities

Sen. Specter Threatens to Block NSA Funds Specter's behavior should have taught President Bush and the RNC not to blindly support a liberal incumbent just because they pretend to be a Republican during election cycle. Bush could have supported conservative Pat Toomey or stayed away from the race until after the primary, but he didn't.

Even if our elected representatives in Washington don't understand it, our local sherrif knows what to do with people breaking the law - You arrest them.
The Butler County Sheriff has asked immigration officials for months to crack down on illegal immigrants. On Thursday, he got his wish -- and says this is only the beginning. Sheriff Richard Jones says we can expect similar round-ups in the future.

He says the purpose of Thursday's operation was to arrest people who are here illegally and wanted for serious crimes.

"I've sent a message and I told [illegal immigrants] we were coming and we came today and this is only the beginning," said Sheriff Jones.
That's one man I don't regret having voted for!

In Showtime, Ari Fleischer examines how the White House briefings have changed since the introduction of cameras. It all becomes a show. Look at how the House and Senate changed after C-SPAN brought cameras in to record their bloviating.

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

The uglier the negative ads the more desperate the candidate

I saw another Petro attack ad this morning. Basically, the ad consists of a lady asking over and over again "what do you call someone who says ______ but owns stock in a company that ________?" The ad ends by calling Blackwell a hypocrite because he has owned stock of companies that sold or produced products, like the morning after pill, at odds with Blackwell's stated position. As soon as I saw the ad, my reaction was to think Petro must be pretty desperate. Ken Blackwell has been an active and committed conservative for decades and his views on pro-life issues are well known and haven't changed over the years (unlike Petro's malleable positions). Petro has previously run ads blatantly attempting to appeal to the worst kind of race based fears. That ad showed a black man taking stuff intended to represent governemtn services from a white child. Petro has revealed his character in this campaign. He may want to consider switching to the Democratic party. His positions on issues and his style of racial demagoguery would be more at home there.

Steve from A Face Made 4 Radio, A Voice Made 4 the Internet has more on the issues raised in this ad. Steve sums it up thusly:
I have come to expect such dishonesty from the Petro campaign, but that doesn't mean that I have to sit back and let Petro slime a good man.


Is there Snow in the forecast?

Several outlets are reporting that Tony Snow has essentially agree to serve as the White House Press Secretary.

Coincidentally or not, there is also growing speculation that John Snow may be on the way out as Secretary of the Treasury. I'm in the minority that thinks Snow has done a good job. Unemployment has remained near all time lows. Inflation has remained relatively low. The inflation success is especially significant considering the gas price issues of the last year or so. I've been expecting gas prices to lead to much higher inflation rates as gas is necessary to get nearly every product to market. The one area where I'd give Snow a failing grade is in self promotion and bragging about the administration's successes. Whatever failings the Clinton administration had they were really good at ensuring they got credit for anything good that happened.

Monday, April 24, 2006

Monday's notes

Various news and links to laugh at or think about for a Monday evening:

We'll start with some news from around the world to make one appreciate our freedoms.

Turk official arrested for chewing gum at ceremony
CNN Turk television quoted Dalci, a 38-year-old pharmacist and father of two, as saying he chewed gum to hide the smell of garlic which he had eaten the previous evening. "After laying a wreath at the monument, I noticed I had gum in my mouth. I am very sorry," CNN Turk quoted him as saying. Anatolian said Dalci was arrested after a local army garrison commander complained to state prosecutors. It was not immediately clear what kind of penalty Dalci would face.
So an Army guy complained about a politician's conduct and the politician gets arrested. Rumsfeld has to be glad he isn't a Turkish politician.

Iran to let women go to soccer games The fact that it is newsworthy that a nation will allow women to attend a sporting event says a lot about that country.

The big thing the past few days has been a CIA employee, Mary McCarthy, being fired for disclosing classified information to help some lousy reporter get a Pulitzer prize. You can not tune into talk radio without getting non-stop analysis of her treasonous behavior. Here are a few links to what's going on.
Christopher Hitchens asks: Why no special prosecutor for the latest CIA leak case?
The Corner at National Review Online has a litany of comments and review of McCarthy's political connections and her campaign contributions.
The American Thinker has an article titled Mary McCarthy makes four Which notes that McCarthy is the 4th member of the National Security Council under Clinton to attack the current administration.
CDR Salamander believes "Have you ever been an associate of Sandy Berger?" should be the first question on everyone's security questionaire. He reminds us that Berger, who hired McCarthy, has his own problems with classified documents.
Best comment on the incident comes from Rush Limbaugh. Not a direct quote, but it went like this: "If Democrats can point a couple crooked Republicans and use the slogan Culture of Corruption, then the response should be about the Democrat's Culture of Treason."

Natan Sharansky has an op-ed in the Wall Street Journal today. Just go read it. No commentary necessary.

Gas prices

Gas prices have gone up in the last week or so. Our representatives in Congress have heard constituent complaints and reached for their handy playbook. The political playbook says when a large segment of the population is in agreement on an issue the best thing to do is to pander to them and to pretend to empathize. The next step is to talk about passing some legislation to change things (or at least punish the alleged culprit). Most important thing is to avoid mirrors as they would hate to recognize any personal responsibility for the results of past legislation.

Politicians from both political parties have played that game over the last few days. They demagogued the issue and demonized the oil companies. They have threatened to pass windfall profit taxes. They have refused to accept any responsibility for past legislation which affected the supply and refining of crude oil.

Worst part of this situation is they know better. If they attended and passed a junior high economics course, they realize it is a supply and demand problem. However, when discussing a consumable commodity like oil we must remember it is the perception of future supply which really drives the price of crude oil. There have been about a half dozen geo-political events in recent weeks which affect that perception. Unrest in Nigeria. Iran's president is a nut who has talked about removing Israel from the map. Iran is working on developing a nuclear arsenal (refer to last item). Venezuela's dictator is also nutty and he has talked about halting the sale of oil to the United States. A large portion of the worlds oil supply comes out of the Persian Gulf. For a tanker to exit the Persian Gulf it must transit the Strait of Hormuz. An angry Iran could fairly easily shut down the Strait of Hormuz.

What has Congress (and some state governments) done in the past?
1. They have passed onerous environmental regulations.
2. They have continued to ban exploration in ANWR and other areas.
3. They have assessed heavy taxes on oil and gasoline.

Reasonable people can debate the merits of each action or inaction, but there is no denying their impact on the price of gasoline. More of the same will only make the situation worse.

Any senator (Specter, Levin, etc) who proposes more taxes as a way to lower gas prices should not only be drummed out of elective office but should also have their high school diploma (if they got one) revoked. I'm not an economics genius but even I know that adding taxes has never lowered the price of anything.

I'll admit that none of us know how much oil is to be found in ANWR and once it is opened to exploration it is years away from being added to the available supply. However, every time the senate votes against the exploration they are further delaying the arrival of that oil. More important than the actual arrival of the oil is that authorizing exploration of ANWR will change the perception of future oil availability. When you go to vote in the upcoming primary election (and in November's general election) make sure you know how the candidates would vote on ANWR. In Ohio's senate race the incumbent, Sen. Mike DeWine (Rino-OH) voted against ANWR and for higher gasoline. DeWine's only serious challenger, Bill Pierce, has said he would have voted for ANWR exploration.

As consumers our only recourse is to change the demand portion of the equation. As the price hits new highs people will over time adjust their driving habits. To do my part, I'm vowing no more trips to the in-laws until gas is back under $2.

Saturday, April 22, 2006

Saturday links and comments

A few random links for a Saturday:

Here is something cool you can share with your kids.

A couple columns examining potential presidential candidates:
Fred Barnes interviews Sen. George Allen Nothing really surprising, except the fact that Allen understand the illegal immigration problem better than his senate colleagues.
Sen. Brownback focuses on 3 R's. Sam Brownback may not have announced his candidacy but he is already making and honing his campaign speeches.

Some are pushing for Tony Snow to be the next presidential spokesman. I think he would be a vast improvement. He has prior experience as a presidential speechwriter for the previous President Bush. Also, having listened to his radio show it is clear to me that he has a strong grasp of the issues and can make complicated matters easy to understand. I have no doubt Snow would be a strong advocate for conservative issues. Here is something I didn't know about Snow, he introduced his old friend Linda Tripp to Lucianne Goldberg.

Thursday, April 20, 2006

Thursday links and notes

A few links for a Thursday evening. No old generals sniping at Rumsfeld today, I'm tired of that silliness.

Senator Coburn Expects 7 Lawmakers To Go To Jail. Should make for an interesting election season.

The FBI is seeking to go through the files of the former newspaper columnist Jack Anderson to remove classified material he may have accumulated in four decades of muckraking Washington journalism. Lawyers might be interested in the legal arguments that are sure to follow this story. Those of us with a voyeuristic bent would be more interested in seeing a book from his volumes of notes. Anderson knew where all the bodies are buried - figuratively speaking.

A positive item for ya, a woman who was carjacked last Wednesday and missing since then has been found alive in a landfill by a worker who saw her legs sticking out of a pile of trash.

Here is something to make you giggle. Kerry 'thinking hard' about 2008 run for president.

Even though the Tennessee senate was probably right in believing this election was won fraudulently I think politically they are handling this wrong.
The Republican-controlled Senate voted on Wednesday to unseat one of its Democratic members, agreeing that her 13-vote win was tainted by questionable ballots from felons and dead voters. An investigative committee, which has been at work since the September special election, recommended Memphis Sen. Ophelia Ford be ousted after finding the election was suspect because of 12 improper ballots. Two ballots were cast in the names of dead people and others came from felons and people outside the district, the committee said.
She would have to win a full term of office in due course anyways. Beyond that, if she is at all like her brothers she will give the legislature valid reasons to to seek her ouster.

I wonder how they talked her into thinking this was a good idea:
SAN SALVADOR, El Salvador (AP) -- A Salvadoran woman was detained after she tried to smuggle a military grenade and marijuana hidden in her vagina into the country's main prison, authorities said Wednesday.

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Baseball after two weeks

It is early, but a few baseball players are off to surprising starts. Consider these items:

Chris Shelton
is leading the American League in home runs with 9. That's slightly surprising as he only hit 18 all last year. However, what's really astounding is that he has hit 3 triples already. Coming into this season he only had 3 triples in his career. A former catcher with a lifetime total of zero stolen bases, speed is not an integral part of his game.

The Indians leadoff hitter (Sizemore) has scored 7 runs after 14 games while their clean up hitter (Hafner) has already scored 22 runs. Weirder than that, Cleveland's number 9 hitter (Blake) is batting .447!

Does Randy Johnson's career development give Daniel Cabrera hope? Johnson who was known for a lack of control early in his career has only walked 2 batters after four starts. In his first start Cabrera walked a career high 7 batters. In his second start he exceeded that total by two. Something happened between his second and third outings as he only walked one batter on Friday night.

Looks like Jim Thome is healthy. Last year Thome managed 7 home runs for Philadelphia. This year with less than 10% of the season in the books he has equaled that total. Hate to see him in a White Sox uniform, but am glad he is recovered from his back problems.

Near the end of Spring training, the Boston Red Sox traded pitcher Bronson Arroyo to the Cincinnati Reds for a power hitting young outfielder named Wily Mo Pena. At this point the Reds seem to have gotten the better end of the deal as Arroyo has hit two homers and Pena one. I personally think that if Boston played Pena every day he'd develop into a very good if not great offensive player. Defensively, you better have a centerfielder who can cover a lot of ground between Pena and Ramirez.

Barry Bonds remains 6 home runs behind Babe Ruth for second place all time. His body is betraying him. He has two bad knees and bone chips causing pain in his left elbow. Oddly enough, even though he can't run and his batting average is just .214 pitcher are still afraid to pitch to him. He has walked 15 times for an on-base percentage of .511. Over the course of the season he will hit at least 6 "mistake pitches" out of the park. The real question is whether he will keep playing long enough to do it. In May 1987, Mike Schmidt realized that he was done and retired rather than embarrass himself. Maybe Bonds will follow that example.

Breaking news - Scott McClellan resigning

White House press secretary Scott McClellan said Wednesday he is resigning.

This is an important move and should have happened a long time ago. Not to kick a guy on his way out, but McClellan has been the least effective press secretary in my memory. It would have been too much to expect that he would be as good as his predecessor (Ari Fleischer), but at a minimum I expected someone who could effectively communicate the administration's positions and frame issues in a positive way. Too often he seemed overwhelmed and not in full control of the press room.

General revolt or much ado about nothing

The amount of attention devoted to examining the recent call by a few retired generals for Donald Rumsfeld to be replaced as Secretary of Defense is a sign of a slow news cycle. Today, without even trying, I stumbled across ten columns on the subject. Here are just a few.

Brain Shavings used graphics to respond to Katrina Vanden Heuvel of The Nation who asked:
Is there a retired general left in the States who hasn't called on Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld to fall on his sword?
The few who have called for Rumsfeld's ouster account for far less than one percent of the retired Flag officers (generals & admirals).

Tony Blankley of believes a Court of Inquiry should be convened to consider charges of insubordination against the various generals. While I am disgusted by the partisanship of the generals, I disagree with that idea. If they were on active duty I'd have no problem with them facing sanctions for publicly rebuking someone senior to them. However, since they are not on active duty I don't feel this constitutes an act of insubordination as is protected as free speech. Retired military personnel are subject to the Uniformed Code of Military Justice (UCMJ) but I don't think Blankley's idea is a path we want to travel.

A General Disgrace is an op-ed by Max Boot in the LA Times.

Former Defense Secretary Melvin Laird and retired Air Force LtGen Robert E. Pursley co-authored an op-ed titled Why Are They Speaking Up Now?

In The war against Rumsfeld, the Chicago Tribune acknowledges the fact that the fight against Rumsfeld started long before 9/11 or the Iraq War. Criticism of the war is cover for the fact that these generals just didn't like the changes Rumsfeld was pushing in an attempt to streamline our armed forces.

Retired Navy Rear Admiral Bill Center weighs in.

Appropriately, the final word on the matter belongs to the president. President Bush has made it very clear that he is NOT going to fire Rumsfeld. Funny thing is these complaints have put the president in a position where he couldn't fire Rumsfeld even if he wanted to. Between these generals and some congressional Democrats calling for his departure, Rumsfeld has probably never had such job security.

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Tuesday stuff

A few links for a Tuesday evening.

Another economics article, wonder if this is Bush's fault: "Black business owners on rise"

Bill Bennett isn't very pleased with the Pulitzer prize award choices. Sometimes what you choose to honor says a lot about an organization.

Earlier today I posted about Rob Portman being named to head the OMB, this obviously ends the rumors of his taking the place of John Snow at Secretary of the Treasury. I haven't understood the amount of flak Snow has taken. Our economy has actually been roaring for the last couple years and the market is starting to catch up. Don Luskin examines how Snow has been underappreciated and why.

More proof that marijuana affects your memory. Rolling Stoned magazine says the Bush is the worst U.S. president in history. What, they can't remember as far back as Jimmy Carter? I contend it is silly to rank historical figures (or baseball players) while still active. Having said that, Bush could end ranking as high as top five and no lower than number 20 depending on how his policies play out. I need to do a serious ranking of presidents. Consider it entered on my "to-do" list. The great and the awful are easy. The tough part is sorting out the guys in the middle. My initial thought on this subject is that Polk and Hayes have been short changed by history.

Local boy does good

FOX news just reported that later today Rob Portman will be named by President Bush as Josh Bolton's repacement at the Office of Management and Budget. Portman currently serving as United States Trade Representative was previously the U.S. Representative from Ohio's 2nd Congressional District.

Monday, April 17, 2006

Stuff for a Monday evening

You almost feel bad for lying Joe Wilson after reading Christopher Hitchen's latest evisceration of Wilson's prevaricating. I say almost feel for him because it is impossible to feel anything but revulsion for the man after his political machinations to undermine our nation's reputation during time of war.

Michael Berg is running for Congress. Who is he? Well, his son is actually better known. His son was Nick Berg, the guy who was captured and beheaded by terrorists in Iraq. His father actually decided to be more angry with President Bush for his son's murder than the scum who killed his son. The son may have been worth voting for, but the father is only worthy of scorn.

Defense Secretary Rumsfeld gave a lengthy interview to Rush Limbaugh today. Here's the transcript.

For laughs you can visit BizzyBlog to see Bob McEwen's "response" to the serious allegations raised by the Enquirer. Response is in scare quotes because McEwen's spokesman did everything but respond to the charges. His campaign has officially become a comedy act.

McEwen candidacy should be over

Read this article from the Cincinnati Enquirer and this post from Bizzy Blog and ask yourself if Bob McEwen can continue to be taken seriously as a candidate for Congress. I imagine McEwen's positions on most issues are fairly close to my own. Doesn't matter. How he would vote in Congress is secondary to issues of character and fitness for office. If the allegations raised by the Enquirer are true, McEwen needs to immediately end his campaign, apologize to his supporters for betraying their support and wasting their donations and slink back to DC.

Best and Worst U.S. Senators

Time magazine has an article this week profiling the ten best and five worst U.S. Senators. Based on recent performance, I think the worst list should be much longer than the best list. In fact, home state voters should be ashamed of sending to DC more than half the senators listed on Time's "best" list. The list says more about the editors of Time magazine than it does about the quality of the senators listed.

Monday's various thoughts

A few things to think about on a Monday morning.

Couple weeks ago, some people were highly critical of comments made by Jill Carroll in a tape released by terrorists holding her hostage. Some bloggers, notably Don Surber, rightfully slammed others (Debbie Schlussel) who rushed to criticize Carroll. I never weighed in on the tapes because I give no credence to any statement made while under duress. However, a recent statement by one of the British hostages rescued in Iraq compels me to write.
Sooden has thanked all those who helped him and acknowledged the burden his family carried. He said he believed a ransom was paid to secure his release from captivity and that the operation felt contrived. He said the primary reason for his presence in Iraq was to bear witness to the suffering of the local people. "Although we were held captive for 118 days all of Iraq is a prison. Iraqis must endure daily violence and insecurity. They carry fear and uncertainty about the future. Our captors too are prisoners of this circumstance."
So members of the military risk their lives to save his pathetic life and he feels it was contrived and he believes his captors are prisoners of circumstances. I imagine he finds it easier to forgive his captors for killing his fellow hostage, Tom Fox, than he does to forgive coalition forces for dealing with Hussein. Serious adults should pay no attention to idiots like this guy who are unable to make moral distinctions between his murderous captors and those who wasted their efforts to save him.

Speaking of Hussein, here are two articles to be read and shared. Shared particularly with people who are looking at negative reporting of the situation in Iraq and forgetting it would be much worse if we had continued to ignore the problem. Two things we should not let the media ignore and pretend weren't the case. One is the fact that Saddam was reconstituting his WMD programs and actively trying to obtain materials to build nuclear weapons. The other is the fact that his was a totalitarian regime and the entire population was abused under his rule. Those who ignore those facts are revisionist historians of the worst sort.

A follow-up to the issue of a couple retire generals calling for Secretary Rumsfeld to resign is the question raised by this article. "If Rumsfeld's so bad, why didn't generals resign?"

Charlie Sheen doesn't understand how our freedoms work. He was roundly criticized after saying something really stupid and he feels like that is an attack on his free speech.
Actor Charlie Sheen has slammed critics for hitting out at him for his controversial opinions on the 9/11 terror attacks. Sheen appeared on a radio talk show saying he had trouble believing the official story from the Bush administration. He says: 'I just had a lot of questions. I got attacked. It was sad because they didn't really take a look at any of the stuff I was asking them to look at, any of the evidence, or any of the stuff that generated those questions. '... but I think, what happened to a time in this country when we had a constitutional and a god given right to be curious about things that didn't make sense?'
Sheen, guess what dummy? We still have a Constitution and you still have a right to say stupid stuff. However, that right does not mean you will not be criticized for saying stupid stuff. That apple didn't fall very far from the family tree.

Another example of Democrats wanting to have both sides of an issue is discussed in this article, Finding Religion - Democrats try to talk like God-fearing folk. Just so everyone understands if a conservative acknowledges that their faith helps form their position on an issue they are pushing for a theocracy. However, liberals can cite faith to push environmental legislation and ignore their faith on life and death matters and still call themselves "good Catholics." Must be nice to know the media will not challenge their hypocrisy.

Illegal Immigration

Biggest issue that our elected representatives are failing to handle currently is the illegal immigration problem. Nearly every politician I've heard discuss the situation says something incomprehensibly stupid. Some examples:
1. They do the jobs Americans won't do. BS. If an employer really needs the function performed they will offer as much as is necessary to hire someone to do the job. That's how capitalism works. Workers are a commodity subject to the ups and downs of supply and demand like any other natural resource. If the supply is unlimited the cost is low. If the supply is very limited (like now with the near record low unemployment) the cost goes up. Hiring criminals and evading the employment taxes, health care costs and other expenses of hiring people who are here legally is just an attempt to get an unfair competitive advantage.
2. They watch our children. No. They don't watch my children. If you are so rich and so busy you need to hire a criminal to watch over your children, then you need to re-prioritize your life.
3. There are too many here already to deport. How would we know? We haven't really tried. What other law do we allow people to break because too many people are breaking it?

Some politicians do understand that while the problem may have social and economic aspects it remains primarily a national security issue. Sen. George Allen (R-VA) is one who gets it. My own guess is some Democrats may get a few Hispanic votes for seeming sympathetic to the human rights issues involved. The real danger to Republicans is not the few votes Dems will pick up but rather the millions of votes Republicans will lose for failing to deal with this situation. Right Wing News looks today at a poll done at Free Republic which Republicans better pay attention to if they hope to remain a majority.

Saturday, April 15, 2006

Bunch of stuff for a Saturday morning

Lots of articles to share this morning.

I wouldn't want to be in charge of security for this dinner.

This headline "Al-Arian To Be Deported" is incomplete. The word "finally" should have been part of the headline. Some dirtbag college professor (okay, okay I understand that's redundant) has ties to terrorists and it takes us ten years to deport him?

Rumsfeld Gets Robust Defense From President Good! People criticize President Bush for being too loyal. Personally, I find that to be one of his better attributes. I would think less of him if he were the standard politician who hung his subordinates out to dry when they were attacked.

Here is a related op-ed, The Hidden History of the Iraq War Critics.

TIGER Woods' agent has issued an apology for the golf star calling himself a "spaz" after the Masters last week. WHAT! Has our sensitivity level gotten so pronounced that people were complaining about a word a golfer used to criticize his putting? People need to lighten up and stop looking for a reason to get offended.

The Left, Online and Outraged, is an article from the Washington Post examining a nutty left wing blogger. Reading the hatred this woman spews I wanted to hate her back with the same intensity but couldn't. In the end I just felt sad for her. If politics and the world scene have her that wrapped around the bend she needs to turn her tv and computer off. Poor, pathetic woman. Separately, the WA-PO unintentionally helped the conservative cause with this article. Voters will be turned off by the hate and ugliness portrayed in this article.

In local news, the angry mother is right, justice seems to have failed in this case.
Eric Jackson walked out of court a free man Friday, even though no one disputes he shot and killed a pregnant woman last year. A Hamilton County jury acquitted Jackson of two murder charges - one for the woman and one for her fetus - after concluding he fired in self-defense during an argument with another man. The shot missed Jackson's target and hit Tawnia Kirksey, who was 10 weeks pregnant. Prosecutors said the evidence didn't support Jackson's self-defense claim and instead indicated that Wheeler was backing away when Jackson drew his gun and fired.

"He got off with murder," said Kirksey's mother, Daisy Kirksey. "I feel like the justice system failed."
Being scared of another dirtbag and firing with bad aim is NOT the definition of self-defense.

I'll finish with the most important item today. Bill Cunningham of 700 WLW had senate candidate Bill Pierce on his show yesterday and Weapons of Mass Discussion has a transcript of the interview as well as a link to the audio file. Go read the whole thing but here is a very telling part from the end where Pierce quotes a very liberal Democrat, George McGovern, to show his understanding of governments negative affect on business:
PIERCE: After he got out of the United States Senate, he fulfilled a lifelong dream he had and that was to be a small business owner. He bought an established, reknowned bed and breakfast in Connecticut called the Stafford Inn. Within five years, he went bankrupt. And at his bankruptcy proceedings and in an op-ed piece he penned for the Wall Street Journal, he stated that had he been a small business owner before he went in to politics, and understood the pressures and demands on small business, his entire political career would -- his entire voting career would have been different. And he would have made a better senator. When I look at what we are facing now, we look at Senator Mike DeWine and even Sherrod Brown, they are cut out of the same cookie cutter mold. That's college. Law school. And then 35 years of politics. Our founding fathers had envisioned citizen caree-- citizen legislators, not career politicians. And I think what we see in Washington right now is exactly why.
We don't need more lawyers in politics. We need people with practical experience like Bill Pierce.

Friday, April 14, 2006

Good Friday

Today is Good Friday. BizzyBlog has an entry up as a reply to those who would claim Jesus Christ never existed. He has a run down of contemporary historians who wrote of his existence.
Josephus was a Jewish historian who was born in either 37 or 38 AD and died some time after 100 AD. He wrote the Jewish Antiquites and in one famous passage described Jesus as a wise man, a doer of wonderful works and calls him the Christ. He also affirmed that Jesus was executed by Pilate and actually rose from the dead!
Make up your own mind, but I'd rather believe and be wrong than not believe and be wrong.

Along the same lines, Chuck Colson has a column discussing how Jesus' disciples maintained their beliefs even under threat of execution.
Just think about the situation Christ’s disciples were in after He left them. Here was a group of peasants, powerless, up against the most powerful empire in the world. Possible prison time was the very least of their worries. They knew that torture and execution could be in their future if they refused to stop preaching the name of Jesus Christ.

But they couldn’t stop.

To a man, they kept talking about Christ’s life, death, and resurrection to anyone who would listen. None of them would deny or retract their story. Eventually, just as the authorities had threatened, most of them were executed for it. But still, all of them maintained to the very end that Jesus had risen from the dead—that they had seen Him, touched Him, talked with Him.

What would inspire men to suffer and die for a belief? Only one thing—the absolute certainty that their belief was true.

Friday notes

What do we have today?

Well, it's mid-April so we have the annual story of some idiot refusing to pay their taxes because they don't agree with how the government is spending it. These ones are upset that their tax dollars are supporting the war effort. Worst of the bunch is this one:
Jim Allen, a retired Army social worker now teaching at St. Louis University, knows he is breaking the law by withholding some of his income taxes. But last year he and his wife, Jan, became fed up with the billions of dollars spent to fund the war in Iraq and decided to take a moral stand. "I am not opposed to paying taxes, but I am when such a large percent is going to pay for war," says Mr. Allen, who served in the Army for 20 years.
So he accepts his retirement check which comes out of taxes other people pay but he refuses to pay his share because he doesn't like where some of the money goes. Hey, dummy. I don't like 90% percent of the government spending (actually that is just a wild guess, it might be as much as 91 or as low as 85 percent) but I file my taxes because that is what the law requires. If you don't like the law contact your representative to get it changed. Until it changes you must follow the law.

From the NYT we have some retired generals calling for Defense Secretary Rumsfeld to resign. I have a few thoughts about these generals and their complaints. First the origin of these complaints are borne out of anger at Rumsfeld's attempts to modernize the military. Some senior military people embraced proposed changes some were threatened. Secondly, the generals main complaint about the Iraq war center around whether enough troops were used in the initial occupation. I'll grant that it may have been harder for the insurgency to get off the ground if we had flooded the country with soldiers after the initial air assault. However, making that assertion three years after the event conveniently ignores the facts at the time. Prior to the air assault we had substantial troops levels in the eastern Mediterranean waiting to enter northern Iraq through Turkey. More important than not being able to move troops through Turkey was Saddam's threat to use chemical or biological weapons. While some politicians are ignoring or disavowing their previous statements about Iraq WMD program, Rumsfeld (and his commanders in the field) had to proceed with the belief that the threat was real. Using a minimum number of soldiers reduced the number of targets on the ground. While every soldier lost is a tragedy, the truth is our casualty numbers have been extremely low for a conflict of this type and would be much, much higher if we had flooded Iraq with targets. Also, it's interesting that we don't have lots of retired Navy officers spouting off as Monday morning quarterbacks.

Almost as a counterpoint to catterwalling of the various retired generals, the Washington Post has an op-ed today titled, Troops in Support Of the War. The author is a Marine who served two tours in Iraq. His stated intention is to refute the notion that comments of people like Representatives Jim Moran or John Murtha reflect the views of those serving.

While we are still arguing over Iraq, Iran's efforts to develop a nuclear weapon is becoming a major concern. Here are two articles discussing military options.
John Podhoretz
Thomas McInerney
We all need to get more familiar with the Iranian situation. There is no easy answer.

Jay Nordlinger has a new Impromptus column online. Well worth reading. Here is one snippet:
More Clinton: "I don't know how you have a great country that is a beacon of hope for the world, for peace and freedom and democracy, if you let a third of any group of people wind up going to prison sometime in their lives."

Point 1: If Clinton doesn't know how a country can be great while at the same time being flawed — and having many flawed people within its borders — then he is not nearly as smart as we suppose. Point 2: I'm not sure that "we," or "you," as Clinton put it, are "letting" people go to prison. I think they have some role in that themselves.
Read the whole thing. He even includes a punctuation lesson.

Thursday, April 13, 2006

Breaking News?

Tom Hamilton just interrupted the broadcast of tonight's Indians game and said it is being reported that the federal government is investigating Barry Bonds for perjury during his grand jury testimony in the Balco case. Just turned on ESPN and they are saying a separate grand jury has been convened to consider whether to charge him.

I wondered when that shoe would drop.

Thursday's links

Some interesting reading this morning.

I hope the bolded portion of this isn't true.
A committee working for the release of convicted spy Jonathan Pollard asked Prime Minister-designate Ehud Olmert and the leaders of other Kneset parties on Wednesday to submit an additional formal request asking the United States government to grant Pollard clemency.

The Committee to Free Jonathan Pollard, with the cooperation of Pollard's wife Esther, has told Olmert that a source close to Bush told them that if Israel submits another request, it will be accepted under humanitarian considerations and as a gesture to the new Israeli government.
We do not need to release a convicted spy to demonstrate our allegiance to Israel! If Pollard didn't want to spend the rest of his miserable life in prison he should have thought of that before he spied against his own country.

Reading this article "Drama in Dry Documents: the Libby Case Deepens," I'm convinced the flimsy case against Scooter Libby will eventually go away without a trial.

How is the current war on terrorism similar to the Cold War? The opponents to the war are the main similarity, especially on college campuses.
During the Cold War, there were Communists, anti-Communists and anti-anti-Communists. It would be unfair to call the anti-antis pro-Communist. But it was the anti-Communists _ the Cold Warriors _ that the anti-antis most energetically opposed.

Today, there are terrorists, anti-terrorists and anti-anti-terrorists. It would be unfair to call the anti-antis pro-terrorist. But it is those fighting terrorists _ those waging war against militant Islamist ideologies _ that anti-antis criticize most harshly.

I try not to speak ill of the dead. So I'll just say good riddance to this goof.

A case of recognizing the obvious - Poll: Most say illegal immigrants are criminals So they needed to conduct a poll to find out that most people believe you're a criminal if you break the law. Amazing. Next they are going to conduct a poll to see if most people believe rain is wet.

This has to sound stupid to everyone regardless of their position on the death penalty.
A judge who halted an execution because the inmate was mentally ill has agreed to force the man to take anti-psychotic medication so he can be put to death.
If the guy has to be put to death who cares if he is off his meds as he is killed. Dead is dead.

Even a big fan of Tom DeLay would admit this is a really bad idea.
The White House is looking at a list of cost-cutting candidates to head the Office of Management and Budget, and Rep. Tom DeLay, R-Texas, may be on it.
Don't they remember DeLay's ridiculous comment last year that all the fat had already been cut from the budget. He is the wrong man for that job!

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Wednesday's notes & links

A few things political and otherwise to ponder on a Wednesday morning.

Chirac decided to surrender to young misbehaving French thugs. I guess the German's were busy.

Mark Joseph of looked at the presumed favorites for the 2008 presidential election (Hillary Clinton and John McCain) and came to the same conclusion I did - the favorites don't have a chance. He reached that conclusion by a different route. He doesn't believe either one passes the normal test.

Democrats like saying "tax cuts for the rich" with an accusatory tone. However, some of them seem uncomfortable admitting the end of tax cuts would equal raising taxes. Investors Business Daily has an article examining an exchange between Bloomberg's Al Hunt and Senator Clinton about raising the 15% rate for Capital Gains tax. I think it was very telling that she dodged the question and attempted to change the subject to health care. Unfortunately, the article reminds us at the end that the Republican controlled congress has not taken the lead to make the tax cuts permanent. Right now while families are stroking checks to the Treasury is a perfect time to have an open debate on taxes. Instead congress is on recess.

The Indians keep on rolling. Last night they beat the Mariners 9-4. Let's hope the Mariners leave town before Ichiro and Beltre break out of their season long slumps. They are batting .176 and .148 respectively. That won't last.

The Reds continue to reap the benefits of the Bronson Arroyo trade. Arroyo hit his second home run and won his second game yesterday. As good as his hitting has been it is more important that he has not walked a single batter.

This is about time:
Saying they are shocked by the "blatant, coordinated and anti- American demonstrations on behalf of illegal aliens," eight Colorado Republicans called on President Bush on Tuesday to declare a national state of emergency and to secure U.S. borders.
But why is this letter from only 8 congressmen and why aren't our congressmen as outraged? This could be a major election issue. We have had many Democrat senators and representatives speaking in support at these rallies which are essentially protesting the idea of enforcing existing immigration laws.

Monday, April 10, 2006

Random thoughts and links

Sorry about the light blogging. Was out of town for a couple days on important business (translation: fantasy baseball draft)

Heard on the radio: Ohio's baseball teams (Indians & Reds) are a combined 9 & 3 while Pennsylvania's teams (Pirates and Phillies) are an anemic 2 & 12. Ouch.

Don Surber has a post about how the 2004 election taught John Kerry about that government interference isn't always such a good thing. Shame is Kerry didn't really catch that point.

Bill Pierce for Senate is the title of a post at BizzyBlog where Tom Blumer formally endorses Pierce in the race to be the next U.S. Senator from Ohio. He runs down a checklist of attributes and positions for Pierce. Looking at the list of desired attributes I find incumbent seriously lacking.

New daily must read: SIXERS. Sixers is a new blog from National Review Online devoted to the 2006 elections. Insightful.

Isn't the police motto supposed to be "To protect and serve?" From San Fernando Valley, California we get the story of a policeman who gave an 82 year old woman a ticket for crossing the street too slowly. Basically, they are fining this woman $114 for aging. Ridiculous and sad.

With Ted Kennedy speaking to a bunch of illegal aliens at some criminal rally today, Wizbang looks at what the senator has in common with the folks he was addressing. After noting the irony of Kennedy needing a Spanish translator since he was kicked out of Harvard for cheating on a Spanish test, they went with the most obvious:
The illegal aliens refuse to accept the responsibility for their illegal actions in entering this country in violation of the law, or overstaying their visas. Ted Kennedy refused to accept the responsibility for driving his car into the pond at Chappaquiddick, leaving a young woman to die.

I've never been a fan of the hyphenated American stuff which seem to demonstrate divided loyalty. Some of my ancestors were born in other countries, but I wasn't. I'm not an Irish-American, German-American or any other BS. I'm an American. However, today I heard of one adjective I'd accept to further describe my status. Legal-American.

Thursday, April 06, 2006

Illegal immigration

Does your senator know how you feel about the proposed illegal immigration legislation? Here is a link to phone numbers for all 100 U.S. senators (courtesy of RWN). To me, the dumbest pat of the proposed legislation is the pay a $1,000 fine and we'll forget about the fact that you've been breaking our laws bit. Guess what, senators? These folks didn't sneak into our country to take below minimum wage jobs because they're independently wealthy. Even if this amnesty plan was a good idea, they don't have a $1,000 to pay the fine.

Bill requires gays' history to be taught

From the "An idea this stupid had to originate in California" department, we get this:
The state Senate will consider a bill that would require California schools to teach students about the contributions gay people have made to society -- an effort that supporters say is an attempt to battle discrimination and opponents say is designed to use the classroom to get children to embrace homosexuality.

The bill, which was passed by a Senate committee Tuesday, would require schools to buy textbooks ``accurately'' portraying ``the sexual diversity of our society.'' More controversially, it could require that students hear history lessons on ``the contributions of people who are lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender to the economic, political, and social development of California and the United States of America.''
You laugh and say well that only affects California. Wrong.
Though it's a California bill, it could have far-reaching implications, not only by setting a precedent but also because California is the nation's largest textbook buyer and as such often sets the standards for publishers who sell nationwide.
Folks, we're already in the handbasket - only question is how long will the journey take.

Overhyping a change which changes nothing

Over the last couple days it has been reported ad nauseum that Katie Couric is the replacement for Dan Rather as anchor of the CBS evening news. For some reason this has been hyped as a big deal. Why? Basically CBS is just replacing one extremely biased liberal with another extremely biased liberal. The only noticable change will be in their accents. CBS may experience a slight blip up in ratings as a couple people who like Couric from her morning show tune in, but in the long run they won't see a major change. People who stopped watching CBS years ago out of disgust at their blatent liberal bias will not flock back out of curiosity over a female anchor.

UPDATE: The Today Show has decided to stay extremely liberally biased by replacing Couric with a goofy war protester.

Why is this illegal?

I have to sarcastically ask why is this illegal?
Jury Finds Three Guilty of Beating Pregnant Woman Three people have been found guilty of beating a pregnant woman in an effort to kill the fetus her boyfriend did not want her to carry to term. Buford, Russell and Curry were convicted Monday of attempted murder of a fetus, assault with a deadly weapon to terminate a pregnancy, attempted robbery and kidnap for purposes of robbery. Buford and Russell also were found guilty of conspiracy to commit murder.
Fortunately, the baby survived this attempted abortion. I thought the right to an abortion was settled law handed down by the Supreme Court. Maybe it is an issue of practicing medicine without a license. That must be it. You have to go to school and become a highly trained doctor in order to kill children.

How can the courts fail to see the hypocrisy in these contradictory rulings? If a woman wants to kill a child she can see some scumbag doctor and it's a simple, private medical procedure and considered completely legal by our amoral society. If a man tries to kill the same child it is attempted murder of a fetus (fetus by the way is the Latin word for baby). Both acts are equally heinous.

Reds game 2

Following the Indians example, the Reds bounced back from their awful first game to beat Chicago yesterday. Baseball is all about the pitching and the difference for the Reds from one game to the next was the starting pitching. New starter Bronson Arroyo pitched 6 & 2/3 solid innings and hit a home run.

The Pittsburgh Pirates come to town today. It will be a homecoming of sorts for new Pirates Sean Casey and Joe Randa who were with the Reds last year.

Centerfielder Ken Griffey Jr. passed a couple of Hall of Fame centerfielders in the record book yesterday. His fifth inning home run was the 537th of his career, moving him past Mickey Mantle into 12th place on the all-time list. That homer also gave Griffey 1,538 career RBI, breaking his tie with Joe DiMaggio for 31st on the career list. Griffey is at a point in his career that it seems anytime he passes someone on the all time lists it's a Hall of Famer. (H/T Baseball Musings)

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Wednesday's notes & links

Lot's of odd stuff in the news today.

Bobcat that attacked golfer was rabid The golfer killed the attacking animal with a seven iron after arguing with his caddy about which club to use.

Teacher uses unexploded ordnance as a paperweight. What could go wrong? Give the guy a hand. No seriously, give him a hand - he really needs one now.

Staying with humor, Sen. Dodd Says 2008 Run Is 'An Itch' Why is it that every senator believes they should be president?

In case there were any baseball fans not annoyed by Barry Bonds, he now has Jesse Jackson making stupid comments on his behalf. If you are concerned about your reputation for integrity (or lack thereof) you don't associate with Jackson.

There is a job opening at DHS. This scumbag has to be about the dumbest pervert going:
When he wasn't sending pornographic movies to and asking for explicit photos from a teenage girl in Polk County, a Maryland man was bragging about his job as a spokesman at the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, law enforcement officers said. The revelation - actually made to a detective posing as a 14-year-old girl - resulted in the arrest of 55-year-old Brian J. Doyle at his Silver Spring, Md., home Tuesday night, officials said. During his Internet chats, Doyle quickly revealed his name and job, and he sent his office and government-issued cell phone numbers. The information allowed detectives to quickly verify Doyle's identity, the Polk County Sheriff's Office announced Tuesday night.

Next time I'm upset about our criminal justice system I just need to think about the recent changes to the British system.
Burglars will be allowed to escape without punishment under new instructions sent to all police forces. Police have been told they can let them off the threat of a court appearance and instead allow them to go with a caution.

The same leniency will be shown to criminals responsible for more than 60 other different offences, ranging from arson through vandalism to sex with underage girls.

New rules sent to police chiefs by the Home Office set out how seriously various crimes should be regarded, and when offenders who admit to them should be sent home with a caution. A caution counts as a criminal record but means the offender does not face a court appearance which would be likely to end in a fine, a community punishment or jail.

Well, that's a lot better

Clocks never move as slowly as during the period between an opening day loss and the next game. The Cleveland Indians didn't just lose Sunday night. They lost to the team they are hoping to unseat as division champs. They lost by playing sloppy baseball in sloppy weather on a sloppy field. They lost their number one starter to the disabled list. You get the point, this was a game they wanted to put behind them quickly. That is just what they did. Yesterday's game was a mirror image of Sunday's. It was well pitched. It included timely hitting - in the 4th inning they managed to string together 4 two-out hits. It included solid fielding. Most importantly, yesterday's game was a win which allowed them to forget about Sunday's debacle.

Smart Talk and Girly Talk on the Campaign Trail

Here is another post-mortem on the 2004 presidential election. This one examines how the candidates for president and vice president were perceived based on their verbal communication.
Specifically, they rated each candidate's use of language along six dimensions: cognitive complexity (marked by sophisticated sentence structure and word choice); femininity (use of words and speech patterns favored by women); depression (use of words that are markers for depression or known "indicators of suicidality"); age (preference for words favored by young or old people); presidentiality (speech patterns and frequently occurring words favored by presidents since FDR in their speeches); and honesty (based on analyses of samples of truthful and deceptive language).

Cheney easily sounded the smartest of the four, while Edwards and Bush favored the least sophisticated language patterns, Slatcher and his colleagues report in a forthcoming issue of the Journal of Research in Personality. When it came to sounding presidential, both Bush and his running mate scored considerably higher than Kerry or Edwards. Bush was the oldest-sounding candidate. Edwards also was the most likely to use feminine speech patterns and "female" words (Bush was a close second), while Cheney sounded most like a man's man.
While I'd prefer that all voters have a good understanding of the issues and candidates positions, I realize that isn't the case. A good number of voters go more on gut instincts about whether the candidates seem presidential. Both parties would do well to examine candidates in the primary process with an eye on how they will come across to voters. People may vote for someone who doesn't seem presidential for a lesser office, but most voters want an adult in the White House especially in a time of war or national crisis.

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Tuesday's quick links

A few article to read on a Tuesday:

A Vietnam combat veteran and father of a veteran of Operation Iraqi Freedom takes Congressman "Cut and Run" Murtha to task for calling this George Bush's war and gives him a history lesson to boot.
But, it is not Congress' war, either. When Congress voted to authorize the war and the commander-in-chief gave the order to initiate it, it became our war. Ours: yours, mine, the country's. Our war, sir, not George Bush's.

You are wrong, too, about history - past and future. You were referring, of course, to the Iraq "war." However, history tells us that this is one battle in a larger war against radical, fascist Islamic fundamentalists who seek to conquer.

Do you know your history, sir?

Do you listen to what our enemies say?

Listen, they will tell you: They seek to restore Islamic rule and sharia law over that portion of the world that they regard as historically "theirs."

They mean not only the Mideast, but northern Africa, central Asia - and even Spain.

Then, they seek to expand that rule by imposing the same regime on any country where there is a significant Muslim population, anytime. They mean Europe, Nigeria - keep your eye on Nigeria, congressman, it is already happening in that most populous country of Africa - and, yes, the United States.

As if Cynthia McKinney didn't have enough trouble with her assault of a police officer, now we get word that she used government money earmarked for office supplies to fly some entertainer in for a PR event. You could cut in half operating budgets for all government offices and no one would notice except those who are used to wasting the funds.

Mike Tyson is apparently a big fan of Chairman Mao the deceased former leader of Communist China. No punch line necessary.

If only Clinton had been a Republican
is the title of a column by Burt Prelutsky which wonders how the media would have handled some of Clinton's actions if he had been a Republican.
I’m still not sure if it was a good idea or a bad one to allow the United Arab Emirates to manage those installations on the east coast. But I’m awfully curious why some of those same people who wanted Bush’s head on a pike weren’t the least bit upset when, during Clinton’s reign, Communist China was granted the authority to manage ports on the west coast. So far as I’m concerned, anybody who believes we have more to fear from Dubai than from Beijing needs a brain transplant.

It was only after Saddam Hussein bought off several nations with his oil-for-food scam, and ignored a kazillion U.N. resolutions, that Bush invaded Iraq. Immediately, the cry went up that he didn’t have a coalition. Afterwards, the complaint was that he lacked an exit strategy. Odd that nobody said “boo” when Clinton unilaterally invaded Somalia; odder still that when he sent troops to Kosovo, promising they’d be home within a year, nobody took him to task when, a few years later, when he left the Oval Office, our forces were still there. That’s some exit strategy.

His liberal critics accuse Bush of being in bed with Halliburton, but Halliburton, you should be aware, did just fine in the 90s when Clinton was minding the store.
Prelutsky also looks at this different way the two presidents are regarded in matters of race relations.
There’s one last thing about Clinton. We keep hearing that he was the first black president. Aside from the fact that he and that other serial adulterer, Jesse Jackson, allegedly prayed together when they were both caught tom-catting around, what made Clinton so darn black? Heck, taking his lead from Congress, he even revamped welfare and tried to get recipients weaned off the federal teat. If Clinton had been a Republican, the Black Caucus would have stormed the White House with torches and pitchforks. Aside from Jackson, the only black person Clinton seemed to hang around with was Vernon Jordan.

But I never was able to get a handle on what made Clinton blacker than, say, George W. Bush. It’s Bush, after all, who has appointed Colin Powell and Condi Rice to the highest positions in his cabinet. You would think that would count for something with the left, especially with one of them being a woman.

So what made Clinton so black? That he spoke with a southern accent, played a musical instrument, came from a dysfunctional family, and was blatantly promiscuous?

If that sounds racist, don’t blame me. I never regarded Clinton as a credit to any race -- black, white or human.

Here is an article about President Bush visiting Cincinnati yesterday to throw out the first pitch of the season for the Reds. They should have left him in to pitch to the Cubs.

Monday, April 03, 2006

Tom Delay to resign from Congress

From Drudge we hear that Tom Delay is going to announce tomorrow that he is going to resign from Congress. I'd like to claim that Delay fought tirelessly for conservative causes. However, in the long run he became an advertisement for term limits. I believe he fought harder for conservatism when Republicans were in the minority in the House. In the area of government spending, the Republican controlled House of Representatives has been hardly any better than the previous decades of Democrat control. I appreciate his decision to step aside and wish him and his family well in the future.

Why did Basic Instinct 2 crash at the box office?

This article starts with facts:
The last time "Basic Instinct" man-eater Catherine Tramell prowled the big screen, the studio erotic thriller was hitting box office heights. The first "Instinct" took the top spot when it debuted in 1992, with an opening weekend of $15.1 million, the equivalent of $20.45 million in today's dollars.

By comparison, "Basic Instinct 2" limped into 10th place upon its arrival this weekend, grossing just $3.2 million.
The article drifts into left wing lunacy in trying to explain those facts:
Paul Verhoeven, director of the first "Basic Instinct" (which scored $353 million worldwide) as well as the widely ridiculed "Showgirls" (now regarded as something of a camp classic), attributes the genre's demise to the current American political climate. "Anything that is erotic has been banned in the United States," said the Dutch native. "Look at the people at the top (of the government). We are living under a government that is constantly hammering out Christian values. And Christianity and sex have never been good friends."

Scribe Nicholas Meyer, who was an uncredited writer on 1987's seminal sex-fueled cautionary tale "Fatal Attraction," agrees, noting that the genre's downfall coincides with the ascent of the conservative political movement.

"We're in a big puritanical mode," he said. "Now, it's like the McCarthy era, except it's not 'Are you a communist?' but 'Have you ever put sex in a movie?'"

I wonder if Verhoeven has ever visited the United States. How did he come to the conclusion that "Anything that is erotic has been banned in the United States?" I would go so far as to say the truth of why the movie didn't attract viewers is actually the opposite of his contention. There is so much erotica available that the thought of a little nudity on the screen wasn't enough to convince people to fork over 10 dollars to watch it in a theater when they'll be able to rent it for a couple dollars in a few months. Another reason less people are watching the sequel might be the fact that the lead actress is 48 years old. 48! I could be wrong, but my guess is most people interested in watching erotic films prefer the "actress" be closer in age to 20 than 50.

So much for an undefeated season

I realize last nights (or more accurately this mornings) baseball game doesn't count any more than any other game, but after waiting for the season to start you hate to lose the first game. Even worse than losing the game was seeing starting pitcher C.C. Sabathia leave the game in the third inning with a pulled fat muscle. Let's see a speedy recovery from the big guy. I hope this is not the image we remember from 2006.

Sunday, April 02, 2006

Sunday night stuff

Don't think for a minute that John McCain isn't running in 2008.
Potential presidential candidate John McCain says he longer considers evangelist Jerry Falwell to be one of the "agents of intolerance" that he criticized during a previous White House run. In 2000, as he sought the Republican nomination that eventually went to George W. Bush, McCain said: "Neither party should be defined by pandering to the outer reaches of American politics and the agents of intolerance, whether they be Louis Farrakhan or Al Sharpton on the left or Pat Robertson or Jerry Falwell on the right."
As a conservative, I don't want to be lumped in with Falwell or Robertson, but even I was put off by McCain equating Falwell with racists like Farrakhan and Sharpton. If McCain wasn't running in 2008 he wouldn't be the commencement speaker in May at Liberty University.

If you don't know what the words mean don't sign the petition.

Jesse Helms isn't doing well. Keep him and all others dealing with the affect of aging in your prayers.

As an old Navy guy, I don't like this.

Wow, it is so late on Sunday that it is now Monday. The Indians and the White Sox have been in a rain delay tied at 3 for a couple hours. I'm not going to wait any longer to see if they will get the game going again. I'll find out in the morning.

Saturday, April 01, 2006

What does "New & Improved" mean?

I get the mail out of our mailbox and as I'm flipping through the envelopes I notice one says:
Your New & Imporved Time Warner Cable bill is enclosed
So, I'm thinking, what would be an improvement in a bill? The only thing that came to mind was a lower amount due would be an improvement. So I open the bill and is it lower? No! Believe it or not it is $6.34 higher than last month. Please, no more improvements.