Friday, November 21, 2003

James Lileks

You MUST read Lileks today.

He takes on smarmy character over in Baghdad and rips him a new one. Scroll down to where it says FINALLY and enjoy James taking out the trash.

Saturday, November 15, 2003

Infotel Phone Book Scam


"The time to act is now. Let us all, as bloggers, unite to ensure that Infotel does not profit from its bully tactics. Don't make anything up, stretch the truth, or do anything else that could be construed as stooping to their level. Just say what needs to be said to ensure that everyone who reads your blog knows what unmitigated bastards these guys are. That way, Infotel will come to regret their sleazy tactics. This will send the message to other shady businesses loud and clear: fuck with the blogosphere, and the blogosphere will turn right back around and fuck with you. "

Sunday, November 09, 2003

Bush Meetup

If you are a Bush supporter, sign up at Bush Meetup to find out what like-minded supporters are doing in your area. Even if you aren't interested in meeting anyone else, sign up anyway just to show support.

Thursday, November 06, 2003

The New Face of Conservative America - Bobby Jindal

I bet if this candidate was a member of a minority community "acceptable" to liberals, you'd be seeing alot more of him on the network news shows. (by the way, Gov. Arnold, give this guy a visit and do a fundraiser for him...):

"Jindal’s governmental ethics manifesto is part of his conservative platform, “Bold New Vision for Louisiana,” and centers around three main themes – making state and local government more open and accountable to the public, aggressively addressing potential conflicts of interest, and responsibly managing spending of hard-earned taxpayer dollars. Highlights of his plan include requiring public officials to disclose their sources of income, barring regulated industries from contributing to officials who regulate them, and preserving an independent legislative auditor’s office.

The New Orleans Times-Picayune endorsed Jindal for governor citing the need for honesty in government. The editorial said, “Given the history of corruption in this state, Louisiana needs a governor who takes care to abide by ethics rules, rather than looking for shortcuts around them. His election would be an unmistakable, powerful message to the world, and also to ourselves: That we have the power to break free of our past. That nothing can stop us from fulfilling our potential.”
Jindal, born to Asian-Indian immigrants in Baton Rouge, is a Brown University graduate and Oxford University graduate (where he was named a Rhodes Scholar). He has developed an impressive resume of public service: He became Louisiana’s health secretary at 24 where he turned around the Medicaid program from $400 million deficit to $220 surplus by cracking down on fraud and abuse; he became director of a national commission on Medicare at 26; he became president of the University of Louisiana system at 27 where he increased retention, donations, and endowments; he became health-policy adviser to the Bush administration at 29. He has also been a consultant for McKinsey & Company, advising CEOs/Senior Management of fortune 50 companies. He and his wife of five years, Supriya Jolly, are parents of a one-year-old daughter Selia Elizabeth. Jindal, born Piyush, converted to Christianity at 18, and took the name Bobby. He is a Member of St. Jude Catholic Church in Baton Rouge."

Howard Dean Talks Gays and God

From RealClearPolitics:

"As you've probably seen by now, Howard Dean touched down in Tallahassee on Tuesday to tell Southern Democrats they need to "stop having our elections in the South based on race, guns, God and gays and start having them on jobs and health insurance and foreign policy.''

Also included in Dean's speech were diatribes against Florida Governor Jeb Bush for signing a bill preserving Terri Schiavo's right to live and for reaffirming the state's ban on gay adoption. Correct me if I'm wrong, but aren't those issues concerning God and gays?"

Friday, October 31, 2003

NYTimes Wants Joblessness, Despair

In what might be its boldest anti-Bush headline of the year, the left-leaning news pages of the New York Times asks, "Are Happy Days Back for the Economy? Bush Hopes So".

Bush hopes so? Doesn't the NYTimes "hopes so" too? Doesn't every other good American also wish for the economy to rebound so that fathers and mothers can return to their jobs to provide for their families? Oh right, now I remember, NYTimes editors want continued despair so a Democrat can get elected - how else to explain the headline?

One further note about how far the editors will go to screw the President - the article isn't even about George Bush! He isn't even mentioned until the 12th paragraph of the 14 paragraph story.

Thursday, October 30, 2003

Two Huge Boston Sports Stories:

Vin Baker scores fifteen points in his "come back" game at the Fleet Center in Boston last night. Baker, who spent months in alcohol abuse rehab, looked like a new man. Most everyone in Boston is wishing Vinny the best as he struggles to remake his life and his career.

Manny Ramirez was put on waivers last night. That means any team that wants him can take him (and the remaining $100 million left on his contract). I am praying, PRAYING, that another team chooses to pick Manny off waivers so that we can reorganize the Sox' structure, but then again, I prayed during the 8th inning of game 7 against the Yankees and we know how THAT turned out.

Friday, October 24, 2003

France, Wonderful France

From the International Herald Tribune:

"The phenomenon of gang rape in France has become banal. It occurs - how often is unknown - in the concrete wastelands built as cheap housing for immigrants on the outskirts of France's big cities. Here, according to sociologists and prosecutors, teenage boys, many of them loosely organized into gangs, prey on neighborhood girls.

Many of the boys are raised in closed, traditional families and are hopelessly confused or ignorant about sex; others are simply street toughs. In this world, women enjoy little respect; often girls who appear weak, or who wear tight-fitting clothing or go out unaccompanied by their fathers or brothers are considered fair game.

To avoid trouble, many girls of the projects have taken to wearing loose-fitting jogging clothes and hidden themselves behind domineering fathers or brothers; others have organized themselves into their own gangs. Many of the Muslim girls have donned head scarves - more for protection than out of religious conviction. "

(hat tip to andrew sullivan)

Tuesday, October 21, 2003

Radio Should Say 'No' To Government Intimidation:

In response to some comments with possible racist overtones by on-air hosts, the Massachusetts Attorney General's office is seeking a meeting with the owners and management of Boston sports station WEEI. Supposedly, the government is seeking assurances that "similar conduct won't happen again".

The AG is NOT the FCC. WEEI should tell the AG to "butt out" and demand that the Massachusetts goverment stop its bullying of radio station ownership in an attempt to manipulate what is said on the airwaves. Should the FCC wish to ask some questions, by all means WEEI must be responsive, but when state officials start to dictate on-air content, then watch out.

Monday, October 20, 2003

Eisner No Longer Jewish, Justice Thomas No Longer Black

Okay bloggers, new rules!

Since the media elite has declared that bloggers shall no longer believe that a media titan's religion should inform his business judgments, I have a new rule for the media elite. Henceforth, no reporter shall mention Justice Clarence Thomas' race when discussing his work on the Supreme Court.

If it is unfair to cite one's religious background in trying to hold that person to a higher standard, then certainly it should also be unfair to cite one's race.

Tuesday, October 07, 2003

Update from Drudge:


If these numbers came to be, it would be an epic blowout. But I think things will be closer...
Drudge Says:

Friday, October 03, 2003

Here is the full text of the Gray Davis article that the LA Times refuses to follow up on (via

Closet Wacko Vs. Mega-Fibber
by Jill Stewart

I have this file, labeled Gray Davis, that for the last few years I've been stuffing with all the bizarre little tales that are quietly shared among journalists and political insiders about the man who, though probably viewed as a blandly pleasant talking head by most Californians, is in fact one of the strangest ducks ever elected to statewide office.

Long protected by editors at the Los Angeles Times--who have nixed every story Times reporters have ever tried to develop about Davis's storied history of physical violence, unhinged hysteria and gross profanity--the baby-faced, dual personality Davis has been allowed to hold high public office with impunity.

Perhaps you are among the millions never told of Lieutenant Governor Davis's widely known--but long unreported--penchant for physically attacking members of his own staff. His violent tantrums have occurred throughout his career, from his days as Chief of Staff for Jerry Brown to his long stint as State Controller to his current job.
Davis's hurling of phones and ashtrays at quaking government employees and his numerous incidents of personally shoving and shaking horrified workers--usually while screaming the f-word "with more venom than Nixon" as one former staffer recently reminded me--bespeak a man who cannot be trust with power. Since his attacks on subservients are not exactly "domestic violence," they suggest to me the need for new lexicon that is sufficiently Dilbertesque. I would therefore like to suggest "office batterer" for consideration as you observe Davis in his race for governor.

The most disturbing aspect of Davis's troubled side is the ease with which the power elite in California, many of whom know he is unbalanced, laugh off the long public deception that has created Davis's public persona. "He'll never be governor," one well-known Democratic state senator explained to me last year, justifying his own failure to criticize or out Davis. "He'll never be the Democratic nominee," the senator insisted.

And that's certainly how things stood, in my own mind, until Davis announced his intention to run for governor. It quickly became apparent that Davis's only Democratic "competition" would be Al Checchi, a guy who squeezed $50 million out of a lot of little people ten years ago in his sudden vault from silver-spooned graduate of Harvard Business School to Texas mega-multimillionaire during the reorganization of Disney. The Disney deal made Checchi an instant player who immediately began dreaming of becoming a senator--or was it governor?--of Texas.

So self-absorbed in building his millions is Checchi that, although he has lived in Beverly Hills with his family for much of this decade--when he wasn't decamped to his mansion on Lake Harriot in Minneapolis during his takeover of Northwest Airlines--most of my friends still think Checchi comes from somewhere in Northern California. They can be forgiven their ignorance, because throughout the civic debates that have embroiled Los Angeles, Checchi has been a cipher. He is a leading champion of no causes, has established no meaningful charities, has left no laudable trace. He's the 312th richest man in America, and nobody can even pronounce his name.

So it was with alarm that I read the very similar speeches given by these two men as they both offered plans to reform the dismal academics in California's public schools, a scandal that many observers believe will be the hot issue in the governor's race.

In his speech to the Commonwealth Club in San Francisco last week, Checchi at least had the nerve to identify teacher incompetence and lack of teacher testing as a key problem. Davis, who has long slept with the power anti-reform teacher's unions in Los Angeles and other cities, could not bring himself to utter such a blasphemy. In his only major divergence from Checchi, in a speech to Town Hall of Los Angeles in September, Davis largely blamed parents.

Observing this pair of oddballs, the notion struck me: Isn't it a fatal flaw of the Republicans, not the Democrats, to promote candidates for top office who have no right to lead a civil society? How can it be that the Democrats suddenly suffer Dan Quayle Disease, after their years of carping about the Republicans' penchant for nominating louts and fools? More specifically, why on earth is the California Democratic Party allowing such sour milk to rise to the top, when California so desperately needs great men and women in charge?

One cannot get a straight answer to these questions via official channels, such as the Party itself. But one can at least delve into the true nature of the life and times of the disturbing Davis and, as his detractors predictably dub him, of checkbook Checchi.

Most crucial of all is the fact that both Davis and Checchi have based their considerable career successes on the perpetuation of carefully crafted whoppers.

"I guess Gray's biggest lie," says his former staffer who notes he often flies into a rage, "is pretending that he operates within the bounds of normalcy, which is not true. This is not a normal person. I will never forget the day he physically attacked me, because even though I knew he had done it before to many others, you always want to assume that Gray would never do it to you or that he has finally gotten help."

On the day in question, in the mid-1990s, the staffer was explaining to Davis that his perpetual quest for an ever-larger campaign chest (an obsession she says led Davis to routinely break fundraising laws by using his government office resources and non-political employees to arrange fundraisers and identify new sources of money) had run into a snafu. A major funding source had dried up. Recalls the former staffer: "He just went into one of his rants of, 'Fuck the fucking fuck, fuck, fuck!'" I can still hear his screams ringing in my ears. When I stood up to insist that he not talk to me that way, he grabbed me by the shoulders and shook me until my teeth rattled. I was so stunned I said, 'Good God, Gray! Stop and look at what you are doing! Think what you are doing to me!' And he just could not stop."

Perhaps the worst incident--long known to Davis-adoring editors of the Los Angeles Times but never published by them--was Davis's attack four years ago on a loyal aide in Los Angeles who for years acted as chief apologist for his "incidents."

The woman refuses to discuss the assault on her with the media, but has relayed much of the story to me through a close friend. On the day in question, State Controller Davis was raging over an employee's rearranging of framed artwork on his Los Angeles office walls. He stormed, red-faced, out of his office and violently shoved the woman, who we shall call K., out of his way. According to employees who were present, K. ran out clutching her purse, suffered an emotional breakdown, was briefly hospitalized at Cedars Sinai for a severe nervous dermatological reaction, and never returned to work again.

According to one close friend, K. refused to sue Davis, despite the advice of several friends, after a prominent Los Angeles attorney told her that Davis would ruin her. According to one state official. K. was allowed to continue her work under Davis from her home "because she refused to work in Davis's presence."

(Checchi's campaign should get a copy of the tape recording Davis left on K.'s home telephone, in which he offers no apology to K. but simply requests that she return to work, saying, "You know how I am."

Well, we do now Gray.

Of course, the problem is that Davis's only serious Democratic opponent, Checchi--though not missing obvious nuts or bolts like Davis--has also built his entire public life on a disturbing fabrication which throws into severe doubt his ability and worthiness to run California state government.

As a San Jose Mercury News writer and a New Times writer showed in recent exposes of Checchi's history at Northwest Airlines, Checchi's claims that he "saved" Northwest in a dramatic takeover in 1989, and that he deserves to be governor of California because he is a turnaround genius, are not supported by the facts.

Northwest was not, in fact, a troubled airline when Checchi--using inside information from his best college buddy who sat on Northwest's board of directors--dreamed up a plan for buying up Northwest stock with other investor's money and forcing Northwest into a position of selling the company to Checchi and pals. In fact, the company spiraled into trouble and near-bankruptcy under Checchi, requiring both major union concessions in 1993 and a huge government bail-out in 1992.

Yet Checci openly chortles about how he risked less than $10 million of his own money on the original $3.65 billion takeover deal, which has today made him a very rich man.
He is very, very proud and has every reason to be," insists Darry Sragow, Checchi's campaign manager.

With two men running for governor who are so willing to gloss over their questionable histories, the unsettling tradition of "opposition research" may play a more critical role than ever in the history of this race. (Op Research, if you're not a cynic in the know, is the practice of hiring political assassins to dig up dirt. The damaging info is: A) widely broadcast or B) dangled in private before the offending candidate as a way to silence that candidate on a major issue on which they have been personally compromised.

Garry South, the talented campaign manager hired by Davis, has hired op research whiz Ace Smith (I'm not kidding about that name) who operates his assassin outfit from the Bay Area. Darry Sragow, the inspired campaign manager hired by Checchi, has hired the Berkeley and Houston firm of Rice and Veroga.

I asked both camp if they intend to go after the really Big Lies both men are relying upon: Gray as the mild-mannered man of decency, Checchi as the savvy savior of troubled institutions.

Says Elena Stern, an official with Checchi's campaign: "Al is adamant about not running a negative campaign, so he will only offer comparisons, not attacks." One "comparison" Stern pointed out is that Davis' camp recently planted a hit story against Checchi in the San Francisco Chronicle claiming that Checchi is facing a discrimination lawsuit by a fired worker. The fine print, however, is that the suit was thrown out by the 9th Circuit three years ago, and it arguably has little remaining merit. Says Stern, "By comparison, Gray Davis has actually lost a race discrimination lawsuit" filed against him by a former female employee.

But is the Checchi camp going to unveil to voters Davis's history of violent "incidents" and hysterical fits? Stern wouldn't say, and Sragow said he "questions whether they way a candidate acts in private has anything legitimate to do with the campaign. So I don't think you'll be hearing from us about whatever violence is alleged amongst Gray's staff or others."

By contrast, South, who admits that Ace Smith has been digging up dirty for Davis's use "for nearly a year" seems far more prepared to discuss the lie holding up the house that Checchi built.

"Until he fucked up Northwest Airlines, Checchi had visions of sugar plums about running for office in Minnesota, and there were numerous local news reports about that in '89, '90 and '91, and about Checchi even meeting with political consultants," says South. "He denies it now because he needs to look like a loyal longtime resident of California, but we think voters want to know that his interest in California is recent indeed."

The ploy of trying to cover up one's sudden self-serving interest in California did not work for another carpetbagging multimillionaire, Michael Huffington, and it is likely to backfire on Checchi as well. For example, California voters will be disturbed to know that shortly after the employees bailed out Northwest and the government spent nearly $1 billion saving the airline, Checchi sold his Minneapolis mansion in 1994, abandoned all thought of running for office there, and escaped back to Beverly Hills. Once back, he barely took a breath before hiring consultants to explore running for California governor.

These two dreary choices for governor leave me hoping that DiFi will jump into the race. Feinstein's hatred for Gray Davis is well-known, and a source close to her confirmed to me last week that "She is still weight a late entry"--in part because she can't imagine a worse fiasco than Governor Gray. And there's a solid chance that the Republican gubernatorial candidate, Attorney General Dan Lungren, can beat the tainted Democrats at the polls next year. But, unfortunately, Lungren is as free of meaningful ideas as Kathleen Brown, who ran for governor in 1994, and voters may reject Lungren as swiftly as they did Brown.

So my question is simple: how did we get stuck in the position of hoping that the job of governor of California, one of the most august positions of power in the Western world, is not won by a mega-fibber or a closet wacko. The Democratic Party likes to wheeze on about how it has all the answers. I'd love to hear them explain this one.

Thursday, September 04, 2003

Liberal Website COUNTERPUNCH.ORG Abets Atrocity -- Amina Lawal May Be Sacrificed on the Altar of Politically Correct Multiculturalism has published an article that cautions the West about speaking out forcefully against the possible death of Amina Lawal by stoning because she had a child out of wedlock.

The editors say:

"It turns out that letters and petitions, even the few that aren't just chain-letter foolishness, may do more harm than good and that the situation in Nigeria is at once far more complex and less dire than it seems from the outside."

The authors of the article go on to explain:

Dominant colonialist discourses and the mainstream international media have presented Islam (and Africa) as the barbaric and savage Other. Please do not buy into this. Accepting stereotypes that present Islam as incompatible with human rights not only perpetuates racism but also confirms the claims of right-wing politico-religious extremists in all of our contexts. We appreciate that many who join letter writing campaigns are motivated by the same sense of international solidarity and feminist outrage that leads us at BAOBAB to participate in international actions. But when protest letters re-present negative stereotypes of Islam and Muslims, they inflame sentiments rather than encouraging reflection and strengthening local progressive movements.

Even in one's wildest dreams, did you ever think the Left would sink this low?

Saturday, August 16, 2003

California Republicans - Stupidest in America:

Seems I write this every six months or so that California Republicans are really, really stupid. They have a dream candidate in Arnold, and yet their egos get in the way and they'll split the Republican vote and lose...pathetic.

Friday, August 15, 2003

BBC Distorts The Truth:

Can't the BBC even tell the truth correctly with a graph? In this graph it looks like US electric consumption is up a thousand or more percent...but then you realize that their vertical axis starts not at zero, but at "2.0"....hmmmm. More dishonesty from across the pond...

AMATEUR ANALYSIS: Blackout Began in US!

After investigating the online records of incidences (at of swag/swells/ and interuptions on the grid, I have identified the following as the first anomaly:

Local Time Event Type Location
08/14/03 04:05:55 PM Instantaneous Sag 2.6 cycles OHIO

this was followed by three more sags in Ohio over the course of three seconds and then a sustained deep undervoltage at 04:09:02 PM in Michigan.

The first anomaly identified in Canada was in Ontario at 04:10:57 PM Instantaneous Swell.

First power interuption occurred in the US at 04:10:34 PM in Michigan.

The first Canadian interruption was noted at 04:11:55 PM in Ontario.

So it looks like the problem started in the US (but this is just my analysis).

From another website, here is the graph of the fatal moment for the grid in NYC,

Thursday, August 07, 2003

Hawash Guilty!

This site has always maintained the US government knew what it was doing on this case. It is now time for all the Hawash supports to apologize to Ashcroft.

Wednesday, August 06, 2003

Dell Computer Customer Service Disaster:

I have a Dell and like it alot, but I've also had nightmarish customer service from many companies in my life and like to give voice to frustration whenever I can. Here is a piece of one man's story:

"When I called back, there was no history or place for the tech to see I had been on the phone for hours and a hard drive had been approved. I had to start all over with my case. This tech asked me if I had reformatted my hard drive since the new system board had been put in. I had reformatted twice before but not since the new system board was put in. Reformatting takes over 13 hours with back-up, reformatting, reinstalling the operating system, reinstalling programs, updating the programs online, reinstalling back-up and all of the other items needed. I did not want to do this and was upset that I had been approved for the hard drive and now I was un-approved. I can't tell you how emotional I was. It had been a long day with Dell. With each call I begged to speak to someone who was in charge. But after many pleas to many persons I realized that it must be part of Dell's policy to never, ever let the customer know a manager exists or to give out the number. Finally I gave up."

Tuesday, July 01, 2003

Ungrateful Scum

Appears the French have taken down American flags at the battle museum in Normandy.

Wednesday, June 25, 2003

Blogger Writes About Organ Donation:

Wonderful piece about the power of organ donation and the ability of weblogs to tell important stories.

Monday, June 16, 2003

Maureen Dowd - Woman Hater:

The following is a Maureen Dowd piece on a remake of The Stepford Wives.

The question one is left with is, "Who is she writing about?" Granted, one of the fun things about reading the NY Times (and often The Boston Globe) is the fact that their writers don't know any "real people", only wealthy, Leftist Nuts. But even this latest Dowd piece goes beyond the typical useless Times drivel...a fun read....I can't wait to show it to my wife so she can learn from Dowd what typical American women worry are worrying about....

    In the long interval between the two [Stepford Wives] movies, women have turned themselves into Stepford wives.
    They can no longer wince at their mates because they have frozen their faces with Botox. They're sedated with Prozac, Zoloft, Xanax and Paxil. (As one mother told New York magazine about rampant pill-popping: "People say `I'm anxious' and I think, how quaint.")
    Women puff their lips, balloon their breasts and suck fat from their hindquarters. The spring fashions were so hourglass sexy, frothy and pastel, they were dubbed "Stepford style" in the Times fashion section.

    Martha Stewart (a haywire robot with a team of lawyers) led women — and culture — back to the wifely arts of cooking, gardening, decorating and flower arranging. Hillary Clinton, once so angry about tea and cookies, is now so eerily glazed and good-natured that she could be the senator from Stepford.

    If 70's feminism produced the squat and blunt Betty Friedan, this decade has produced the sensual and zaftig Nigella Lawson, who wryly calls herself a "domestic goddess" and is a purveyor of what fans call "gastro porn." More of a male fantasy than Stepford husbands could ever conjure up, the British cooking show hostess is always in the kitchen purring hot home economics advice such as mangoes are "best eaten in their natural state, and preferably in the bath."

    There's even a retro trend among women toward deserting the fast track for a pleasant life of sitting around Starbucks gabbing with their girlfriends, baby strollers beside them, logging time at the gym to firm up for the he-man C.E.O. at home.

    As Mr. Rudnick slyly points out: "Men and women are working in tandem to create the Stepford wife of tomorrow. Once the technology advances, there'll be a Botox babe who runs on solar power."

Tuesday, June 03, 2003

Slight Criticism of the Hub Blog:

Just a small bit of criticism about the Hub Blog today.

Blogger Jay Fitzgerald includes this following entry:

'The repeal was gaveled through on a voice vote,' Part III: Brian Moroney makes all the right connections: Clean elections, the smoking ban, bilingual education, charter schools. What the hell else did they put in that bill? ... Moroney makes another interesting connection: Why the hell didn’t Republicans ask for a roll-call vote? Maybe that explains why Mitt has been so quiet on this issue. ... Wayne Woodlief is covering roughly the same ground (pay-to-view).

In the above entry, Hub Blog links to Boston Herald columnist Woodlief's article that bloggers must pay to read.

On principle, I am against bloggers linking to "pay per view" columns. One of the most critical aspects of the Blogosphere is the ability to discuss a subject or column or idea and link to some of the primary sources regarding the topic being discussed. To remain part of the "biosphere dialogue", those whose ideas wish to be included must keep the links to those ideas free and unencumbered. It is for that reason I won't link to pay per view columns nor to Boston Globe or NYTimes pay per view archived articles.

Perhaps this the beginning of a discussion the wider world of blogs should discuss....Blogger Ethics: Pay Per View Links and Archives....discuss amongst yourselves....

UPDATE: Hub Blog responds-

"I usually don't link to pay-to-view columns for the reasons mentioned. But in this case, the Herald columns all dealt with issues I've been hammering away at in recent days. Peter Gelzinis, in particular, broke the Reilly/Billy story in a paid column -- and it's turned out to be one of the biggest stories in Boston in recent days. So I linked to him both yesterday and today. I've been hammering away at the Voice Vote antics of the lawmakers over the past few days, and Wayne was writing about it today. So I linked to him. Sometimes linking to pay-to-view/subscriber material is necessary to further and/or bolster an argument. ... As for your line: "Perhaps this the beginning of a discussion the wider world of blogs should discuss....Blogger Ethics: Pay Per View Links and Archives....discuss amongst yourselves" .... Ugh. Double ugh. Let's end the discussion right here. You're starting to sound like a stuffy non-blogger journalist. No 'Blogger Ethics,' please. To each his own, I say."

Thursday, May 29, 2003

One of the All-Time Great Sport Photos:

Wednesday, May 28, 2003

Liberal Bias Confirmed at LA Times:

Memo from Editor of LA Times:

"...The apparent bias of the writer and/or the desk reveals itself in the third paragraph, which characterizes such bills in Texas and elsewhere as requiring "so-called counseling of patients." I don't think people on the anti-abortion side would consider it "so-called," a phrase that is loaded with derision.

The story makes a strong case that the link between abortion and breast cancer is widely discounted among researchers, but I wondered as I read it whether somewhere there might exist some credible scientist who believes in it.

Such a person makes no appearance in the story's lengthy passage about the scientific issue. We do quote one of the sponsors of the bill, noting that he "has a professional background in property management." Seldom will you read a cheaper shot than this. Why, if this is germane, wouldn't we point to legislators on the other side who are similarly bereft of scientific credentials? "
A Polish Socialist Defends America:

"Many of us participated in the anti-American protests of 1968, which is why we were horrified and guilt-stricken at the image of so many Vietnamese escaping the regime after the communist victory in tiny boats, risking their own lives and those of their families. We also remember the Manichaeism of the supporters of the Viet Cong who burned the American flag but later failed to denounce the regime. We want to avoid this. Today we are not burning the Iraqi flag; we just do not understand those protesting under Saddam Hussein’s portraits."

Thursday, May 15, 2003

NYTimes Kills Dissent at the Boston Globe:

Hub Blog picks up a Boston Herald piece about the spiking of a Globe column that takes the NYTimes leadership to task...why am I not surprised.

Monday, May 12, 2003

Great Answer to an American-Hater:

"These are the arguments of idiots or scoundrels. The last thing America wants is to be alone in the world trying to uphold the values of liberal democracy. The problem is that it does find itself alone, forced into unilateralism by Dame Margaret's UN, which would not enforce any of its 17 resolutions on Iraq. But for her and her ilk, everything comes back to the fault of the US.

Castro's executions get a frown from her, but "as far as Cuba's Castro is concerned, his stay in power has been very much facilitated by certain policies... from outside". The last refuge of the totally blinkered Left-liberal is, when faced with the undeniable evidence of a monstrous regime, to say it is all the fault of America."

Friday, May 09, 2003

Bush Never Went AWOL

Important bit of journo/blogging here about the non-story of Bush being AWOL in the Guard.

Wednesday, May 07, 2003

Lots to Disagree Over:

Be sure to check out Jay at HubBlog today.

It is rare for him to take loss of his senses so often as his insight is usually dead-on, but this day he has faltered on more than one issue:

Quote #1 from Jay:
"Sadly, Bob Ryan deserves what he got."

I disagree. After 33 years of loyal service to the Boston Globe, Bob Ryan deserved the opportunity to apologize and move on. If loyalty is not a two-way street, what is its worth? Bob Ryan deserves plenty of criticism for his stupid remark, but the Boston Globe should stand-by its loyal employee as he makes his contrition - rather than leading his inquisition.

Quote #2 from Jay:
"Yes, legally and technically, the health board acted within its legal authority [to ban smoking in pubs]. But, yes, the system was rigged, as we all know it, to skirt democratic debate and votes by elected officials."

I would suggest that in a democracy, "legally and technically" is all that matters. Further, I believe that the state legislature, in adopting the powers for local boards of health, specifically wished to insulate those boards from the pressures of local governments.

Quote #3 from Jay:
"Tip's Tunnel -- at last: I'm glad they're renaming it after Tip."

Ugh. Can Boston be more insular and small minded? When will we FINALLY stop naming things after Tip, Moakely, and Rose Kennedy?

Oh yes, the wonderfully named "Leonard Zakim - Bunker Hill Blah Blah Blah Memorial Bridge"....."well, you see little Johnny, instead of making a real statment with the naming of the our 'signature' bridge, it broke out into a political squabble between petty pols resulting in a pathetically named, jumble mouthed monstrosity of a instead of being a symbol of what is great about Boston, it is a showcase of how awful Boston politics really is...isn't that nice little Johnny?...San Francisco has the Golden Gate Bridge and we have a bridge named after our inability to name a bridge"

And what might we say to little Johnny about the Tip O'Neil Tunnel, "...well, little guy, when Tip died everyone loved him because he brought home the bacon to the district, like getting the Feds to approve money for the Big Dig, but at that time nobody knew that Tip was getting the Feds to sign on to a financial boondoggle of which they would only pay a fixed amount. You see, Johnny, Tip got the boondoggle started and now the state is stuck with the entire cost of the billions in over-runs. Actually, that is not true. The state moved the boondoggle to an "authority" now they are stuck with the cost overuns and they force people who drive East-West on the Pike in the suburbs to pay for improvement on a North-South corridor in the city...isn't Tip great? So instead of naming a tunnel after something we should be proud of, we've chosen to name it after the person who got the whole debacle started....sweet, eh?"

Fear not everyone, I'm sure Jay will return to his senses shortly, perhaps after a visit to a (now) clear-aired tavern.

Tuesday, May 06, 2003

Bennett Gambling Losses Top $8,000 Annually!

What is all the fuss?

If Bill Bennett cycles through $8 million over a decade on video poker machines that average returns of 99%, Bennett only loses about eight grand a year. Who cares?

For him to have lost (as some allege) $1.4 million, he would have had to cycle through $140 million dollars! Even if you are betting $500 bucks a hand and each hand takes two minutes,Bennett would have to have been sitting in front of video poker machine for six hours a day, evey day, for over four years to lose $1.4 million at your average Nevada video poker machine! !

The Newsweek numbers just don't add up.

Monday, May 05, 2003

Hillary Knew:

According to Sidney Blumenthal's new book on Clinton, just one moment after being sworn in for the second time as President, Clinton's bible toting wife turned to him and said, "They're going to screw you on the Paula Jones case."

Either this is another Blumenthal lie, or the Clinton's are the most demented people on earth.

Wednesday, April 30, 2003

The Hawash Scandal: What Do Photos Mean?

As I peruse Left-leaning, Bush-hating, Ashcroft-vilifying Blog sites, it is interesting to note that they chose to show this particular photo of Maher Hawash. It is the one that shows him as the average joe:

These same Bloggers NEVER show this next photo. The face of Maher that so worried his neighbors following 9/11 that they called the FBI. It was soon after 9/11 that Maher allegedly became a virtual recluse and began to grow out his beard, allegedly, in sympathy with the suffering of Arabs around the world.
To be honest, pro-Hawash bloggers should show both pics.

pics via KATU TV

Friday, April 25, 2003

Hello? Andrew Sullivan?

I'm pretty surprised that Blogger/writer Andrew Sullivan has just now discovered that there is a conservative, non-Libertarian wing to the Republican party. Andrew, have you read the papers over the last twenty years? This is not a secret and I am surprised that you are surprised.

Is there a general right to bedroom privacy in the Constitution? Certainly not as the Founders wrote it.

But should we infer one anyway? Sure, why not? So, I agree with Andrew there.

As for everyone getting all hot and bothered that there is a conservative streak to the, well, conservative US party of Republicans strikes me as odd.

I guess if I were gay and in Texas, I'd probably spend about three minutes a year worrying about the cops.

But I think I would worry much more about the IRS taking 30% of my personal money, the EPA telling me what I can do with my personal real estate, the EOC telling me who I could personally hire for jobs, and the miriad other government agencies whose sole purpose is to tell me what to do every hour of every day that the press and the Left NEVER talk about.

So, if I were a gay Texan, and I had a sense of what is really important day to day, I'd be a Republican and not a Democrat.

Monday, April 21, 2003

Skeptical Iraqis? Skeptical me!

The newspapers this weekend were loaded with stories identifying many "skeptical Iraqis". Not only were they skeptical, some were even "very" skeptical. They were skeptical of the United States' "intentions". Skeptical of our dedication to "a free Iraq". Skeptical of our use of their "oil wealth". They wanted to know if we would stay around long enough to "fix what we broke". And some said they'd be skeptical if "we stayed to long". And of course, the liberal pundits were all-to-ready to chime in with a briskly worded, "The Iraqis have a right to be skeptical?"

No, they don't. The Iraqis have no right to be skeptical...but I sure as hell do.

I'm skeptical of the Iraqis' interest in building their country instead of whining about it to the media. I'm skeptical of their interest in creating a society protective of the rights of minority religions and ethnicities.

I'm skeptical of Iraqis' ability to ward off the influence of Iran, Syria, and Saudi Arabia as they go about re-inventing their government. And I'm skeptical of Iraqis’ desire to stave off the powers of the conservative Mullahs and clerics who hope to dominate post-war Iraq.

I'm skeptical of Iraqis' ability to construct a modern nation unafraid to experience the market-place of ideas. I'm skeptical of Iraqis ability to be a help, rather than a hindrance, to the Mideast peace process.

Yes, call me a skeptic when I see an entire nation of people who do not (and may not ever) understand that Freedom Isn't Free. Maybe they thought freedom was handed out in breadbaskets delivered by Allah, because they've never shown much interest in fighting for it.

But we in the US know differently. History has shown us that the road to freedom is strewn with sacrifice and blood and because of that we hold precious all that we have fought and died for. The Iraqis of yet have not learned this, they got off easy. Their entire nation liberated with minimal casualties while someone else did all the dirty work.

So pardon my skepticism when it comes to the Iraqi people. And pardon my distrust of a people so quick to become skeptical of the intentions of others while many of their own intentions remain so very unclear.

Thursday, April 17, 2003

For Our Dead: No to EU, No to UN

So, now that the blood of Americans has barely dried on the streets of Baghdad, Umm Qasr, Nasiriya and many other cities and towns of Iraq, the delicate elites of the UN and EU wish to give the United States suggestions on how to be a good world citizen in Iraq.

Perhaps the UN would also like to tell the family of Cpl. Bernard Gooden, age 22, of Mt. Vernon, N.Y. who was killed April 4 during a firefight in central Iraq how they should mourn and remember their son and brother?

Perhaps, too, the EU would like to pick out the style casket that will contain the body of Lance Cpl. David K. Fribley, age 26 of Lee, Fla. who was just one of nine Marines killed when a group of Iraqis pretended to surrender but then opened fire on Marines near An Nasiriyah.

No, no, better yet, perhaps President Chiraq has an opinion about which funeral home should be chosen by the family of Spc. James M. Kiehl age 22, of Comfort, Texas who was killed on March 23 when the convoy he was traveling in was ambushed in southern Iraq.

I am certain that German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder has a view as to what songs should be sung at the services held for Sgt. 1st Class John W. Marshall age 50, of Los Angeles, who was killed in action on April 8, when he was struck by a rocket-propelled grenade during an Iraqi ambush in Baghdad.

And we would all be interested to know what Kofi Annan thinks the kids should wear to their daddy's funeral, that of Lance Cpl. Donald J. Cline, Jr., 21, of Sparks, Nev. who left a wife and two children.

I could go on. Yes, I could continue to name the leaders of Europe and put with each of their names the name of a father or son, a brother or an uncle who won't be going home to their families this spring.

They won't be going home because they are dead.

For you see, they didn't have "views" about Iraq, they had courage.

They didn't have "policies" about Iraq, they had guts.

These dead soldiers didn't have "conferences" about Iraq, they had battle plans.

The didn't have "carefully crafted statements" about Iraq, they had guns.

And now, here it comes; wafting over the Atlantic like a stench comes the advice, the suggestions, the dictums, the objections, the disquiet, the whispers, and the anger and disgust of Europeans and the UN bureaucracy... and I "No!" to it all.

I have no interest in their opinions any longer. Except for a few countries on the continent, their opinions and thoughts carry no weight in my house, in my country.

Let the memory of Bernard advise teh US how to look for the weapon's of mass destruction.

Let the memory of David inform as to how best to get the water running.

Let the memory of James tell us how we should sell the oil.

Let the memory of John assist us in distributing the medicine.

And, let the memory of Donald tell the United States of America what kind of future the children of Iraq will have.

Wednesday, April 16, 2003

Remarkable Arab News Article:

    AT AN AIR BASE IN KUWAIT, 16 April 2003 — People are curious about being embedded in the Marines. This is my effort to set the record straight. Some readers suspect I was subjected to propaganda while living with these men and women. There was no propaganda campaign. If there had been, there would have been no embeds. Journalists wrote their own stories, and made their own interview requests and interviews. The Marines’ “PAOs” (public affairs officers) would set up the meetings, but not oversee them.

    What happened to the majority of journalists living the Marine life is that we experienced it from the inside. I can honestly say that seven weeks as an embed has changed me forever. And I have often found many similarities between Marines and Arabs.

I have passed this around to all I know. I suggest everyone does the same.

genealogy site

Tuesday, April 15, 2003

A Pro-War Blogger's List of US Errors in the War

Please don't take this as Monday morning quarterbacking, folks. These are errors that annoyed me the very moment they happened and were not deduced as errors with the benefit of hindsight. They are not so much military errors as they are PR errors with regards to playing the "expectations game".

    1) The term "Shock and Awe" should never have been used by any US official to describe the air campaign. When used, the term set the expectation bar so high that anything less than immediate capitulation on the part of Saddam's regime would look like a defeat for the US campaign. "Shock and Awe" was always too flippant to be used in any serious discussion of the military strategy and use of the term worked to our disadvantage.

    2) "Nasiriya (or Umm Qasr or Basra or Najaf) is now in control". Each time such a thing was said during the first week of the war, I cringed, knowing it was just a matter of hours before a US casualty came from that city and the pundits would have a field day. If I could see the cheap shots coming, why couldn't the Pentagon. It was always better to say that the situation in a particular city remained serious, rather than trying to nuance that city's particular level of safety.

    3) "Water and electricity will be turned on soon." Don't say it unless it is absolutely true. Cripes, my cable goes out for 15 minutes and I go nuts. Why are we expending large amounts of our "goodwill capital" and credibility with fanciful predictions on when basic services will return. If it is going to be two weeks, say two weeks and explain why.

    4) "Syria has chemical weapons". Can we PLEASE find the one's in Iraq first? Once we do, our credibility will be sky high and we'll be able to convince folks that the Pope has WMD. However, until we find the WMD in Iraq, let's keeping the finger pointing to a minimum.

Much Ado About Hawash

Lots of attention on the Internet about Intel engineer Mike Hawash who is now in custody as a material witness (witness to what, I don't know). Hawash is a Palestinian but has been an American citizen for 15 years. He is getting alot of high-level support from the likes of Intel executives and Oregon's legislative contingent.

Many on the 'Net are using this case as a weapon in their war against Attorney General John Ashcroft, but I suggest they hold their fire. So far Ashcroft is doing very well in the courts (see the Lackawanna cases, the Florida Professor case and the recent Ujaama case).

My money is on Achcroft; betting he has a reason to hold Hawash and that it will all come out well for the AG in the end.

As for the use of "material witness" powers to hold American citizens in jail, I will (at least for now) defer to the judges of the US to determine if these powers are being abused. Until I feel otherwise, I know of no reason to believe these judges are acting in an unconstitutional manner.

UPDATE: Washington Post has suggested in this past article that Hawash may have connection to the Ujaama case in Portland.

Wednesday, March 26, 2003

Blogging to here now during the war. The Command Post.

Tuesday, March 25, 2003

Sign the Thank You Note to our Troops. So far, 8.6 million have.
Blogging to here now during the war. The Command Post.

Sunday, March 23, 2003

Saturday, March 22, 2003

I'll be blogging the war at The Command Post. Please visit.

Friday, March 21, 2003

I'll be blogging the war at The Command Post. Please visit.

Thursday, March 20, 2003

I'll be blogging the war at The Command Post. Please visit.
Use This Sun Clock to Track Day and Night in Iraq.

Wednesday, March 19, 2003

Massive triple A fire at 9:41pm
9:35 pm B-52s in the Air to "prep battlefield" - reports NBC.
9:33 pm EST First Sirens Reported on NBC - Jitters Build.
BBC Blogger in Baghdad:

    Baghdad :: Rageh Omar :: 0115GMT

    Baghdad is a completely quiet city. Standing in my hotel room looking out across the skyline and the streets below, I have seen only one car driving at high speed in the last hour. All the streets are deserted.

    People have gone to their homes and have stayed there. Last night just after dusk I was walking around and all the shops were shuttered up and people were trying to get home. The streets are empty

    People have made their preparations, the market has been full in recent days of people buying what they could, gas lamps, masking tape, dried foods. Now that the deadline has run out people are at home and are likely to stay at home.

    I would still describe it as an open city, you would imagine Bagdhad would be braced for war in a military sense. You would imagine tanks on the streets, checkpoints, troops on the junctions of main roads, but they are not there. You do find a few sandbag positions with a couple of soldiers there, but that's it.

    I went out to the edge of Baghdad to one of the main highways to the north and there was nothing there really, it was an eerie feeling. To the naked eye driving around here, there is no sense of this being a militarised city.

Hungary Grants US Airspace Permission:

    United States and United Kingdom aircraft bound for Iraq will be allowed to use Hungarian airspace and designated airports, the Government has decided.
    The US and the UK requested the use of Hungarian airspace and airports on Saturday, March 15.
    The national security cabinet stated that no Parliamentary approval was needed to grant the use of airspace to foreign aircraft, basing its position on a 1998 resolution asserting the right of the Government to decide in cases of countries using Hungarian airspace in order to implement Iraq-related UN resolutions.

Monday, March 17, 2003

The EU is Dying:
    With these prospects no longer in play, the EU is little more than yesterday’s answer to the day before’s problems. The only goal it has to propose is the utopian fantasy of opposing the presumed hyper-power which is the United States. Unfortunately, no one can really say why this bureaucratic behemoth should oppose the US, nor can anyone give a reasonable account of how the EU would go about its quixotic mission. All we have are a sad combination of old-style leftist internationalists seeking to reinvigorate failed doctrines with a dash of anti-Americanism.

Read the whole thing.
BRUTAL!!!. An Instant Classic:
This anti-war spokeswoman is so poorly informed, it hurts to listen. Find the link here.
Hypocrites - Russians Have Killed Tens of Thousands of Civilians in Chechnya:
On the floor of the Security Council the Russians plead for the lives of Iraqi civilians while butchering civilians daily in Chechnya. The French may buy into this hypocritical song and dance, but thank goodness the US won't. I predict fewer Iraqi civilians will die during the entire liberation of Iraq than die each week in Chechnya.
    "At the same time, incendiary air bombs, cluster bombs and containers were being extensively used by Russian troops to torch Chechen facilities and to destroy manpower concentrations, along with other air-delivered incendiary weapons, including so-called "vacuum" or "fuel" bombs. At time of these bombings by incendiary weapons there were several thousand Chechen fighters in Grozny, and up to 100,000 civilians. The true number of civilian casualties among the Chechnya civilian population in not known and actually is one of Moscow's best kept secrets. But there is some concrete evidence from independent observers that tens of thousands civilians, including women and children have been killed by incendiary weapons alone."

Friday, March 14, 2003

A Remarkable Letter Sent to a Catholic Priest from a Devout Follower:

March 13, 2003

Father John O'Connor
Saint Francis of Assisi Parish
18825 Fuller Heights Road
Triangle, Virginia 22172-2007

Father John,

Prior to the 9:30 AM Mass on March 9, 2003, I read your letter to parishioners citing the criticism you have received concerning the homilies given concerning the Iraq situation. The criticism is well-deserved. Add my letter to a hopefully growing collection. 

The prayers for petition offered at Mass Sunday - specifically the second - praying that President Bush and the Administration “step back from the brink of war”, I believe portrayed the President and Administration as warmongers.  Whether the wording of the petition was intentional or not, I found it outrageous and offensive. To offer that petition after first praying for our men and women in harm’s way was arrogant and a direct affront to those who are executing national policy and to those people within this parish who have expressed concerns to you previously. It was ignorant because in case it has escaped the Church’s notice, the United States is engaged in a global war on terrorism and all its connections – wherever they exist and against whomever supports them.

I believe the Franciscans and, unfortunately, the Pope are wrong on this matter. On no other issue have I ever disagreed with the Pope, so I assure you it is an opinion not blithely formed. The Pope's public criticism of the Administration is invalid in my view.  No nation sacrifices its sovereignty and its right to unilateral action; our national defense is not subject to any other nation’s veto. For the Franciscans to insinuate that the President or any member of the Administration thirsts for war by employing our Armed Forces is unconscionable. It is a moral imperative to pray for peace, which we all fervently desire, but I believe it is wrong to use the power of the pulpit to state or infer that any sovereign nation needs anyone else’s approval to wage war in defense of itself. 

I work within the Department of Defense and have served my entire adult life in our nation's defense.  I can tell you without qualm that no one wants war.  It appears where the polar differences of opinion lie between those who agree with the Administration's actions and those who oppose them is not just the seriousness of the threat facing us but also the utility and willingness to employ military force to either coerce or compel the achievement of legitimate national objectives. 

Anyone involved in the profession of arms and diplomacy knows full well who pays the price for war and what war entails.  Coercing acquiescence is always preferable. Make no mistake - it is the threat of force so far that is coercing Iraq’s actions – but there are limits to coercion. Where it and diplomacy fall short of achieving national objectives, the application of force follows. It appears however that there are people within the United States who are all too willing to sacrifice freedom and even national sovereignty for “peace”, when in fact we have not been at “peace” with radical Islamic fundamentalists and their allies for decades. Further, no nation, our erstwhile “allies” France and Germany included, will ultimately have any security if the prerogative of national security must always be put to a collective and trumping “democratic” vote inside the United Nations. 

Friends, peers and family members are in harm's way paying a price as well-intentioned and not-so-well-intentioned people dither about the threat and criticize and undermine national policy and strategy - all under the protection of the First Amendment.  I see no glory for my friends, peers and family members, however, in sacrificing for people ultimately opposed to what they are actually doing, no matter the prayers offered for them that are then followed by not-so veiled criticism of the Administration.

A copy of this letter is being sent to Bishop Loverde, to our troops overseas, and I intend to provide a copy to fellow parishioners. 


Michael W********
From P.J. O'Rourke's Holidays In Hell.

P.J.'s response to a typical Euroweenie whining about how Americans don't understand war, that they think war is...

"A John Wayne movie," I said. "That's what you were going to say, wasn't it? We think war is a John Wayne movie. We think life is a John Wayne movie -- with good guys and bad guys, as simple as that. Well you know something, Mr. [Froggy] Poofter? You're right. And let me tell you who those bad guys are. They're us. WE BE BAD.
"We're the baddest-assed sons of bitches that ever jogged in Reeboks. We're three-quarters grizzly bear and two-thirds car-wreck and descended from a stock-market crash on our mother's side. You take your Germany, France, and Spain, roll them all together, and it wouldn't give us room to park our cars. We're the big boys, Jack, the original giant, economy-sized new and improved butt-kickers of all time. When we snort coke in Houston, people lose their hats Cap d'Antibes. And we've got an American Express credit card limit higher than your piss-ant metric numbers go."
"You say our countries never been invaded? You're right, little buddy. Because I'd like to see the needle-dicked foreigners who'd have the guts to try. We drink napalm to get our hearts started in the morning. A rape and a mugging is our way of saying 'Cheerio'. Hell can't hold our sock-hops. We walk taller, talk louder, spit further, fuck longer, and buy more things than you know the name of. I'd rather be a junkie in a New York City jail than King, Queen, and Jack of all you Europeans. We eat little countries like this for breakfast and spit them out before lunch."
Of course, the guy should have punched me. But this was Europe. He just smiled his shabby, superior European smile. (God, don't these people have dentists?)

Thursday, March 13, 2003

Chiraq -The Iraqi Spokesman:
Imagine Paris' chagrine when they realized that they had rejected the British compromise even BEFORE the Iraqis had a chance to.

Wednesday, March 12, 2003

What Price Liberty?:

The American colonies had 4,435 combat fatalities out of a population of 3,500,000 people for a loss rate of .126% of population in our fight for liberty. That is the initial military price we paid for our freedom. A comparable military loss for Iraq as it gains its freedom from Saddam would be 28,571 combat fatalities (.00126 x 22,675,617).

Another comparsion worthy of note (suggested by Steve Den Beste) is civilian deaths during a war of liberation. 350,000 French men and women perished in WWII, .875% of its 40 million population. A corresponding civilian death rate for an Iraq war to be free of Saddam would be 198,000 civilian dead.

I don't know what this means, but I think it means that liberty always comes with a price. Those who desire freedom on the cheap will always fail.
The New France, Same As the Old France:
French treachery leads to a prolonged war against evil -- France's Petain collaborates with the Nazis.

Ralph Peters Tells The Truth About the Dirty French:
    The sorry truth is that Europeans love to cry over corpses, but won't lift a finger to prevent the killing in the first place. They shake their heads over the Holocaust, though their parents were happy enough to pack the local Jews off to Auschwitz.

    The French grudgingly accept that their intellectuals defended Stalin long after evidence of his crimes came to light, but they avoid the issue of how many of their thinkers and artists admired Hitler and profited from the Occupation (French cafes and cabarets boomed under the Nazis).

    Was there ever an African dictator the French didn't adore? The Dutch criticize America's military as trigger-happy, but their own troops didn't fire a shot in defense of the Muslims of Srebrenica, who they had been tasked to protect and whose slaughter was the worst single massacre on European soil since the end of the Second World War.

Friday, February 28, 2003

A Great Canadian (and American) and She's Just 17:

    "Rebecca Willems, a 17-year-old Ottawa high school student, received a standing ovation yesterday from a crowd of military officers and high school students for scolding John McCallum, the Minister of Defence, over anti-American remarks by one of his Liberal colleagues.

    Mr. McCallum, speaking on North American solidarity at the Conference of Defence Associations, told the conference "never must we be smug and superior vis-á-vis the United States."

    His speech came one day after Carolyn Parrish, MP for Mississauga Centre, said she hated Americans, calling them "bastards" intent on going to war with Iraq.

    Ms. Willems, a dual citizen of Canada and the United States, took Mr. McCallum to task during a question-and-answer session.

    "You stated at the beginning of your speech that we as Canadians must not be smug and consider ourselves superior to the United States," said Ms. Willems, who was attending the event with her private school's history class.

    "Yet how can the government ask that of the Canadian people when careless and offensive remarks continue to come from Parliament, such as the unnecessary remark that was made yesterday by a Liberal MP after caucus?

    "How can Canada move forward with a positive attitude of our neighbours when our own leaders cannot?"
-- National Post

Thursday, February 27, 2003

Kurtz Way Off Track:

I'll start by saying that I'm a big Howard Kurtz fan. I think his take on media is usually pretty insightful and, at the very least, interesting. How, then, does one explain today's muliptle foolish missteps by my favorite media critic.

Howard says it's about time that some of the Sunday talk shows booked anti-war arguments. Hello, Howard, have you ever heard of Charlie Rangel, Dennis Kucinich, Al Sharpton and the many others who have spouted anti-war slogans on Sunday talk shows for the last six months? What Howard fails to mention is that with Stalinist/Communist/Pro-North Korean ANSWER as the anti-war movement's leader, it is difficult indeed to find a "normal" activist to go on the circuit. It has been mentioned many times before that if the KKK held a "Tax Cut Rally" how many big name conservatives would How many members of the KKK would be invited to discuss tax policy with Tim So why should it be any different with self-proclaimed defenders of heinous, anti-American dictators?

Howard fails again regarding the Rather - Saddam interview - a true debacle - by giving it relatively little ink. I hope he does more about it tomorrow.

And for all those boo hoos sobbed on behalf of Phil Donahue for only be given 6 months to get his show off the ground, I remind you that he was paid MILLIONS. The reason for the millions was his supposed "built-in" audience, an audience that never materialized. It was clear from the start of Phil's show that his "blame America first" attitude was not right for the times.

Better luck tomorrow, Howard.

Wednesday, February 26, 2003

March, already?
President Bush is on a Roll Too:
Amazing that the Left has trouble understanding this.
    "It is presumptuous and insulting to suggest that a whole region of the world or the 1/5 of humanity that is muslim is somehow untouched by the most basic aspirations of life. Human cultures can be vastly different. Yet the human heart desires the same good things everywhere on earth. In our desire to be safe from brutal and bullying oppression, human beings are the same. In our desire to care for our children and give them a better life. We're the same. For these fundamental reasons, freedom and democracy will always and everywhere have greater appeal than the slogans of hatred and the tactics of terror." - President Bush

Steven Den Beste On A Roll Again:
    But for all their pontification about vast numbers of casualties, that's not what they really fear. What they are most afraid of is that the war will succeed rapidly and seem easy. They fear a rapid and nearly bloodless conquest. They fear that we'll move in, that the Iraqi military will mostly surrender without fighting, and that the war will end in days with almost no one dying. They'd rather see hundreds of thousands of Iraqi civilians be slaughtered than to see a fast and easy conquest, for their greatest fear is that if conquest of Iraq is too easy then the US will decide to do more of it. If war cannot be prevented, they want a huge body count, and if possible they want as many of those bodies as possible to be American. If there must be war they need it to be seen as a failure, just as Viet Nam was. This is not because they are bloodthirsty, but because they fear the alternative even more. An American war of global conquest would ultimately cause even more death and destruction, or so they fear.

    So they warn of another Viet Nam and speak in grave tones about quagmire because they're afraid it won't be one. They protest this war because they fear the US. American power is the true issue. It doesn't matter where it might be flexed or what the local issues are.

    In fact, you occasionally see comments from some to the effect that they'd actually support a military conquest of Iraq, as long as it wasn't America doing it. They bear no love for Saddam, but they fear him much less than they fear American power and American will to use that power. Saddam might create an Arabian empire but it would only directly affect the Arabs. If America creates an empire it will cover the world.

MP Calls Americans 'bastards' :


    "A Liberal MP has apologized for saying about Americans: "I hate those bastards." MP Carolyn Parrish was speaking to reporters about Canada's diplomatic initiative on Iraq. At the end of her comments Parrish said, "Damn Americans ... I hate those bastards."

Friedman on Target Again:

The debate on war with Iraq has never been on the merits for Left. It has been about Bush, Florida, Anti-Semitism, the Invironment and checking American power. Tom Friedman writes:
    " We all know what this is about: the Jewish question. "For too many Europeans, Arabs are of no moral interest in and of themselves," observes the Middle East analyst Stephen P. Cohen. "They only become of interest if they are fighting Jews or being manhandled by Jews. Then their liberation becomes paramount, because calling for it is a way to stick it to the Jews. Europeans' demonstrations for a free Palestine — and not for a free Iraq or any other Arab country — smell too much like a politically correct form of anti-Semitism, part of a very old story."

    The truth is, France is not interested in promoting égalité, fraternité and liberté in the Middle East. It is primarily interested today in managing American power. It is primarily interested in positioning France to become the world's next great "Uncola," the leader of the alternative coalition to American power."

Monday, February 17, 2003

Mayor of London Attacks Warren G. Harding as 'Racist':
    "This is a president [Bush] who uses the death penalty with complete abandon and disregard for any respect for life. This is no example. So let everyone recognise what has happened here today: that Britain does not support this war for oil. The British people will not tolerate being used to prop up the most corrupt and racist American administration in over 80 years."

This quote from London Mayor Ken Livingstone (via Andrew Sullivan) is a vicious slur against one of our American leaders. What the hell did Harding do to you, Ken?!!!
Actually, reading this short bio on Harding makes me think he could have been a pretty good and ineffectual leader of France in 2003:
    Before his nomination, Warren G. Harding declared, "America's present need is not heroics, but healing; not nostrums, but normalcy; not revolution, but restoration; not agitation, but adjustment; not surgery, but serenity; not the dramatic, but the dispassionate; not experiment, but equipoise; not submergence in internationality, but sustainment in triumphant nationality...."

    A Democratic leader, William Gibbs McAdoo, called Harding's speeches "an army of pompous phrases moving across the landscape in search of an idea." Their very murkiness was effective, since Harding's pronouncements remained unclear on the League of Nations, in contrast to the impassioned crusade of the Democratic candidates, Governor James M. Cox of Ohio and Franklin D. Roosevelt.

Friday, February 14, 2003

Before 9/11 This Would Have Been Big News:
    AUBURN, N.Y. — Robert Chambers, who became notorious in the 1980s as the "Preppie killer" when he strangled a young woman during a tryst in Central Park, was released from prison Friday after serving his full 15-year sentence for manslaughter.

Thursday, February 13, 2003

Monday, February 10, 2003

NATO Vote In Favor Of Protecting Turkey wins 16-3, Loses Via Veto:

France, Belgium and Germany continued the Old Europe unilateralism by denying protection to fellow NATO member Turkey. From a NATO press conference:
    Q: Klaus Pompers: Very short question, Secretary General: Who is to blame?

    Robertson: I don’t allocate blame. Three countries have broken silence. Therefore, 16 countries agree with the tasking.

Also of note from the press conference was a question from a reporter from Belgium. With the future of Turkey riding on this vote, this the question Belgium asked:
    Q: Jan Balliauw, Belgium Television. I’m here. Belgium is a small country and host country of NATO. Will it have consequences for the position of Belgium in the alliance? For instance, the location of headquarters?

What brave people....
Saddam, It's Time to Get Dressed:
When I have trouble getting my three year old daughter dressed, I tell her I will count to 3 and if she isn't getting dressed following the countdown then I will "do it for her".

The trouble comes when, after I've counted to 3 and I start to dress her by force, she begins to wail that NOW she is willing to comply to the dressing demand.

A parent has choice here. A parent can give in to the wailing, hoping the child will now comply, or a parent can continue to dress the child by force, all the while advising the child that a fair chance had been given to her and, unfortunately, once the count of 3 had passed, then alternatives to forced dressing were no longer negotiable.

I am like the latter parent. Once the count of 3 has come and gone, nothing, I mean nothing, can change the course of events. My daughter's decision to comply must be made PRIOR to the counting of 3.

Saddam, the US is counting and 3 will be reached on Thursday evening. Nothing you say on Friday will make a difference, none of your wailing will divert us from your forced compliance. You see, the USA is very good parent (and France and Germany are the horrible parents you see at the mall with the ill-behaved kids).

Saturday, February 08, 2003

Iraqis Flown to Hungary:

    Iraqi volunteers have started arriving in the village of Taszár (about 180km south-west of Budapest), with the local mayor saying fears among locals of becoming a target for terrorists are running high.

    A special plane carrying the first batch of Iraqi exiles and opponents of Saddam Hussein arrived in Taszár last Wednesday, for "non-combat training" from the US military. More were expected to arrive at the weekend, with exact numbers being kept secret.Stern explained that training would include learning interpreting skills and support functions (like translation and liaison work) in support of the coalition forces in the event of any conflict with Iraq.

    "They will also have basic training in self defense," he said, adding that when their training was over they would be flown to "outside of Hungary".

    Péter Matyuc, Director-in-Chief for Communication at the Hungarian Defense Ministry (HM), said that "dozens" of Iraqi exiles had landed in Taszár.

    Unconfirmed reports in the Hungarian media have speculated the numbers of arrivals at anywhere between 500 and 3,000.

    Stern did not rule out that some of those trained in Taszár could take part in any future administration which might be formed after the liberation of Iraq from what he described as "Saddam Hussein’s brutal grip".

Hungarian PM Supports US:
    "Now is the moment for us to realize that America and Europe will lose out if they are unable to forge a united stance regarding Iraq," said Medgyessy in an interview with Hungarian daily Népszabadság.

    Speaking in Athens last week, Medgyessy emphasized that, for the sake of UN prestige and the future, Baghdad could not be allowed to ignore the relevant Security Council decision.

Could someone please contact the NYTimes and inform them that Hungary is part of Europe?

Thursday, January 30, 2003

Warning! This Is Not a Joke. Not from The Onion:

From the Boston Globe...really:
    "Breakfast may be the most important meal of the day, but for a cause like peace Felix Arroyo was prepared to forgo it - once every other week.

    At least that was until after yesterday's Boston City Council meeting, when the councilor pledged his ''hunger'' strike would also include lunch.

    As part of his fast-for-peace program, Arroyo said he'll consume only coffee and other liquids from sunrise to sunset - when he gets to have dinner - on the second and fourth Fridays of each month.

    ''We are doing something to bring attention to an issue that is escalating today,'' he said. ''With war, we will continue planting hate for generations of children. Why don't we go to the roots and kill it now.''

    The every-other-week timing of the move drew snickers from some of Arroyo's council colleagues. One joked privately that his proposed hunger strike was ''a little like saying you're going to jump off a building and then only putting a leg over the ledge.''

    Still, Arroyo, who was elevated to the council upon the departure of Francis ''Mickey'' Roache, said shortly after his second council meeting that he's going to contact officials in cities across the country, hoping his movement will catch on. ''Eventually, it's important to do this in an organized way,'' he said. ''I think it will grow.''
Let's hope not.

Anti-American German Computer Game for Kids:

The German government commissioned and distributed an anti-American computer game for kids. The game seeks to help some pathetic inhabitants of the Earth to create a more sustainable future. Of course, these people inhabit a fictional island...but you tell me what this island looks like!

Worst Op-Ed Ever?

Dinah PoKempner, general counsel of Human Rights Watch, seriously argues that America's style of war that seeks to limit civilian casualties is dangerous to....civilians. I this man insane? Is the Boston Globe insane? Answer to both questions is a resounding, "Yes!"

    "Some American cultural values that shape the new war paradigm are not universally appreciated, such as efficiency and a fascination with gadgetry."
Oh, yes. A fascination with carpet bombing would be much more universally appreciated.
    "This explains the US view that it is acceptable to attack civilian morale in the form of nonmilitary targets whose destruction can undermine public support for war: turning the lights off in Belgrade or Baghdad, targeting the enemy's industrialist supporters, destroying civilian propaganda outlets or symbols of the regime such as monuments or civilian administration. All are off-limits under international law, which limits attacks to targets that make a direct contribution to military action."
Why do they hate us? For turning off the lights!
    "It is ironic that at the moment the United States, by virtue of its military prowess, can most afford to set the highest standard in armed conflict, it is backing away from time-honored laws that impose the constraints of humanity upon slaughter."
The United States is the first world power to EVER place a high value on the lives of its enemy's civilian population. This Op-Ed is pure anti-American vitriol, filled with lies, and unbecoming of even the Boston Globe's low standards.\

Nelson Mandela, A Vicious Anti-American:
    Former South African President Nelson Mandela slammed President Bush and his stance on Iraq, saying, "If there is a country that has committed unspeakable atrocities in the world, it is the United States of America."

Tuesday, January 28, 2003

My Very First Cartoon:

Hope you like it.
February 5, 2003 - A Day of Reckoning for the United Nations:

    "Let there be no misunderstanding," Bush said. "If Saddam Hussein does not fully disarm, for the safety of our people, and for the peace of the world, we will lead a coalition to disarm him."
Read It All:

    "To say this war is all about oil is factually identical to saying that this war is all about maintaining our society and lifestyle. If that is not worth fighting for, what is? One may find that offensive ideologically, but my experience with the people who have SPLIT WOOD NOT ATOMS on their bumper stickers have actually split very little wood in their lives. If one feels deeply about NO BLOOD FOR OIL, you must either drive a solar-powered electric car, ride a horse or a bicycle, or walk. You must remove your home from the city power grid. You must discard all plastic items. You must also abandon television, radios and movies, all of which rely on electricity generated by oil. You must forgo modern medicine, surgery and dentistry, likewise driven by oil-fired electricity at many stages. You must grow your own food.

    Do all of these things, and you will have my frank admiration for your dedication to a moral cause. Do anything less and you are a hypocrite mouthing an easy lie in an attempt to strike a pose of moral superiority."

Monday, January 27, 2003

Iraqi Dissidents Attack UN on "Save Me" Man:

In a press release yesteday:

    This morning, in Baghdad, a young Iraqi citizen tried to seek refuge with the UN inspectors. He managed to get into one of the inspectors' cars shouting, "Save me,
    save me," only to be handed to the Iraqi authorities.

    “This incident sends the wrong message to Iraqi scientists,” explained Ahmed Shames. “Scientists are being asked to give information to UN inspectors and promised protection, yet they can’t seem to even protect one man. No doubt this man and his family will be interrogated, tortured and executed as is the practice of the regime. This is not going to fill scientists with confidence in the UN.”

Tony Snow and Fox News, First to Mention "Save Me" Story:

Bloggers across the world have wondered for 48 hours how the inhuman treatment by the UN of an Iraqi citizen would be reported by the press. The response has been, as expected, pathetic. But at least Tony Snow of Fox mentioned it in an interview with White House Chief of Staff Andy Card.

    SNOW: OK. Yesterday, there was an incident where a guy jumps into a U.N. van at the facility in Baghdad and he says, you know, "Save me."

    He's got a notebook.

    CARD: Clutching his notebook.

    SNOW: Clutching his notebook, and the U.N. didn't save him. They turned him over to Iraqi authorities. Now, if you're an Iraqi scientist and you see that, is there any way, under any circumstances, that you'd talk to the U.N.?

    CARD: Well, again, the burden is on Saddam Hussein to have compliance.

    SNOW: I understand that, but this is one of these cases where the United States has talked about trying to get scientists out of the country, yet you have a guy asking for help, and as far as I can tell, the U.N. didn't help.

    CARD: Well, we would like to see the Iraqi people be freed from the burdens that they're carrying because of Saddam Hussein.

    SNOW: Were you disappointed when you saw that?

    CARD: I was disappointed in that I want Saddam Hussein to create a climate where his people feel comfortable in cooperating with the civilized world.

Saturday, January 25, 2003

Two Faced France - Backstabbing Germany and the US:

International Herald Tribune article argues that the French are just using the Germans now, but will be standing beside the US when the war starts. Why? Because they are sneaky lying bastards, of course.

    "Contacted in the last few days, a British cabinet minister, an allied ambassador in Paris, and an official of the Bush administration in Washington all said in the manner of the German businessman that they felt that the supreme instinct governing political decisions for the French remained one of having a voice in the world's decision-making councils. With nuances, they leaned toward accepting that this reality would eventually mean French participation, to whatever degree, if there is an American-led invasion of Iraq.

    Refusing to take a military role, they agreed, would result in France's being excluded from helping shape a new order in a post-Saddam Middle East, no chance to bid into the administration of Iraq's oil resources, and a kind of perverse responsibility in diminishing the importance of the United Nations Security Council, a locus of French international leverage."

Another piece of the article draws our attention to some upcoming elections in Germany. Let's keep our eyes on these, too.

    "A former leader of the German Christian Democrats, who privately opposes an American strike on Iraq, suggested that regardless of surveys showing German public opinion strongly against a war, a defeat for Schroeder's Social Democrats in Hesse and Lower Saxony, his home state, could mark a turning point in German politics.

    Polls now show the Social Democrats headed for disaster in both states, and newspapers have reported that the Social Democrats are discussing Schroeder's possible replacement by Wolfgang Clement, the economy minister.

    Such a disavowal of Schroeder, who is trying to rally support with his anti-war position - the key to his success in national elections last September - would mean that a still confrontational Chirac would find himself isolated among credible Western leaders in dealing head-on with the Americans and British."

Friday, January 24, 2003

Time's Europe Edition:
According to Blogdex, an anti-American column is getting lots of play. Well, if you click over just one page, there is a competing column with a pro-American outlook. Let's get this link around guys and gals! Here is a bit...
    "We increasingly take the anti-American stereotypes of postwar Europeans and reverse them. We see ourselves as inhabiting history — doing the ugly, necessary work of the world — while it is the Euros who inhabit a superficial society. Europeans are materialistic; the E.U. has a low profile on strategic issues because it was designed by bureaucrats obsessed with trade and money. Europeans care more than we do about physical pleasure; they traffic in titillation (to judge from the nightly offerings on television or such bestsellers as The Sexual Life of Catherine M.) and are obsessed with their food (which is, by the way, no longer superior to ours). And if "heritage," Europe's age-old bragging point, is measured by family traditions and religious values, then Europeans no longer have a lock on it. To American eyes, it's tough to have family traditions in a region where so many choose to be childless (the fertility rate in E.U. countries is 1.47 births per woman), tough to have religious values when less than 20% of Europeans regularly attend church."

Great Job to Christopher Caldwell, the author of this fine piece.
New Europe - Hungary Steps Up:

I had not heard this before, but it appears that over 3,000 Iraqi opposition members will soon be trained in Hungary. The natives are a little restless about it (they've not done this kind of thing before) but the government appears confident. Imagine the French doing this? Ha!
    "Matyuc said Hungary had been asked to provide an area for the training of Iraqis to be involved in the possible management of civil and military liaison. "This includes professional translations and interpretation in the field of military affairs and administration. Thus the trainees will have to learn the jargon of these two areas in Taszár," Matyuc said.

    He said they could participate in civil-military support, working in the civilian infrastructure and working on the reconstruction of that infrastructure, and could assist in getting around the Iraq area.

    Although they will not participate in military action, they will learn and practice the use of self-defense weapons, according to Matyuc.

    "A month-long training in how to use a self-defense gun from 30 meters does not correspond to a military training," he said.

    Major General David Barno, the US general in charge of the training of the 3,000 or so Iraqi opposition activists, refused to discuss details of when the trainees would arrive. István Gyenesei, chairman of the Somogy county Defense Commission, said the first group to be trained were scheduled to arrive late this month.

    The Hungarian Cabinet passed a resolution permitting the training to go ahead at Taszár after a request from US Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfield at the end of last year."

UPDATE: More from the Hungarians (with a bonus swipe at the French and Germans).
    "More seriously, allowing the United States to use Taszár air base was a major decision by the Hungarian Government, said the official. "Hungary is making a huge contribution to the Iraqi operation by saying yes to this training. This is a quality contribution and not without risks. You cannot be more visible than by training the opposition so let’s not underestimate the magnitude of this." Or as Leon Trotsky once noted, "You may not be interested in war, but war is interested in you". Not too interested, let’s hope.

    Hosting the Iraqis is also a statement of independence. Small nations like Hungary have no desire to be swallowed up in a German or French dominated European Union. Leaning towards Washington is also a means of showing their own mind, and policy. Even if it might prove risky.

    As the official added (and please note, these are his words, not mine): "Many Hungarians don’t realize that Hungary is a grown up country now. We are not teenagers and we cannot cry and whine any more. We are sending a signal that Hungary is a fully-fledged democracy." "
Chirac Betrays the People of Africa:

    "Rarely has a European leader talked such self-serving nonsense. President Chirac knows perfectly well that Mr Mugabe is subject to a travel ban imposed by all the European Union. He knows that his invitation will infuriate his partners, especially Britain. And unless French diplomacy is exceptionally poorly informed, he knows that such a meeting would have no discernible effect on Mr Mugabe’s disgraceful repression of all those who question his vile policies."
Holy Crap!

Thursday, January 23, 2003

Lies My Media Told Me:

    "Readers of the New York Times, the Washington Post, the Associated Press and viewers of CNN, are fed a dramatically different story. Most Americans are unaware of Chavez’s radicalism and affection for some of the world’s harshest dictators. There is an enormous divide between what the world is hearing about Venezuela and what is really happening there. Reporters have so controlled the flow of information and disfigured the truth that their coverage of Venezuela is a caricature of the "liberal media bias" conservative critics complain about. What we are seeing in media coverage of Venezuela is not liberal bias, but totalitarian bias. The press has shown little concern either for the fate of Venezuela or journalistic objectivity."

UPDATE: Check out this story by the NY Times. No mention at all that the reason the vote can't be held is because of trumped up beaucratic bungling. To read the Times, you would think that there were real constitutional issues involved.