Saturday, April 29, 2006

Sharia Law

From The Local:

Sweden's largest Muslim organisation has demanded that Sweden introduce separate laws for Muslims, according to Swedish television. Sweden's equality minister Jens Orback called the proposals "completely unacceptable".

Good. Sooner or later a line must be drawn. Accepting Sharia in certain areas, or Sharia applied only to certain people would have been a defeat. Odd thing, nowhere in the article is the word "sharia" used.

From the wikipedia entry for Sharia:

In most interpretations of Shariah, the death penalty is applied as penalty for homosexual acts. According to the opinions of scholars, acceptable means of performing the execution included burning, throwing from tall buildings, and stoning. [12]

Death by stoning is also the penalty for adultery where one or two married individual are involved, while lashing with 100 strips is usually the penalty legally applied for fornication when the guilty party is not married.

Friday, April 28, 2006

Protesters Need Protection

Tim Blair's got the story:

Animal activists bit off more than they could chew this morning when they chained themselves to the killing area of an abattoir at Ipswich in south-east Queensland......

Thursday, April 27, 2006


Thorbjørn Jagland thinks Islamophobia is the problem. Fjordman sets him straight:

Opinion polls have revealed that two out of three Swedes doubt whether Islam can be combined with Swedish society, and a very significant proportion of the population have for years wanted more limitations on immigration. Yet not one party represented in the Swedish Parliament is genuinely critical of the Multicultural society or the current immigration policies. The Swedish elite congratulate themselves that they have managed to keep “xenophobic” parties from gaining a foothold while the country is sinking underneath their feet. No, Mr. Jagland, we have nothing to learn from Sweden except hypocrisy to perfection. We should study them only to avoid letting them drag us down with them when they fall, which they will.

Republicans Bet on Your Ignorance Too

I don't know; is it ethical to jump on the math-ignorance band wagon? I suppose if you can see it's a juggernaut that isn't going to stop any time soon. MyWay:

WASHINGTON (AP) - Senate Republicans advocate sending $100 rebate checks to millions of taxpayers, and a Democrat is leading the campaign for a 60-day gasoline tax holiday.

Either way, it seems no one in Congress wants to be without a plan, however symbolic, to attack the election-year spike in gasoline prices.

A vote is possible as early as this week on the Senate GOP approach, which calls for $100 rebate checks for taxpayers to cushion the impact of higher gasoline prices. The measure seems unlikely to prevail, at least initially, since it includes a highly controversial proposal to open a portion of Alaska's Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to oil drilling.

So maybe some good can come of this if it becomes the catalyst that finally gets a few oil wells into that desolate ANWR wasteland. I know. We'll just have to deal with the unimaginable destruction that will result. (like we did in Texas and Oklahoma)
Democrats seemed caught off guard by the GOP maneuvering, but a spokesman said they would have a plan of their own.

OK, well that's good. I like off guard. But this?:
Sen. Charles Grassley, R-Iowa, the committee's chairman, said senators were concerned about the "record profits and significant executive compensation in the oil and gas industry." ........
...... With gasoline prices soaring and oil companies announcing record profits, "it's relevant to know what the real financial picture is for this industry," added Montana Sen. Max Baucus, the panel's ranking Democrat.....

But they already know what they'll find. Come on. These are publicly traded companies. The information is in the annual report. Taxes too. Sheesh.

Reuters Thinks You're Stupid - They May Be Right

Awww man, this makes my stomach hurt. Drudge uses the big font to link to this Reuters story:

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Exxon Mobil Corp., the world's largest publicly traded oil company, on Thursday reported quarterly profit surged, driven by rising oil prices.

Net income in the first quarter was $8.4 billion, or $1.37 a share, up from $7.86 billion, or $1.22 a share, a year earlier.

Revenue jumped to $88.98 billion from $82.05 billion.

Crude oil prices have risen steadily from about $20 a barrel in 2002 to over $75 last week, handing oil and gas companies a long-running profit bonanza.

OK, so it's a bonanza. And they publish the numbers too. Look at how profit jumped! An entire 6.4% !!!! on a net income rise of 7.7%. What? Could it be that the headline should have been: We Know You Used to Get High Before Math Class ?

And know what? I had worked out an example to show how my profit would rise with my income in a hypothetical business selling spotted owls as pets, but great googily moogily, if you can't see the math already, there's no point trying to explain it. Besides most of my visitors lately are from Belgium and I'm embarrassed to do a remedial math class for Americans in front of them.

Here's a hint America. Exxon vs (my) Adobe vs Nasdaq:

Another hint: Your reaction shouldn't be, "Let's go get Adobe."

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Polish? Really?

The Joe Van Holsbeeck story isn't one bit less tragic for it but news out of Belgium has changed considerably:

The Brussels police and judiciary have apologized to the North African community. On 13 April, one day after the murder of 17 year old Joe Van Holsbeeck, the office of the public prosecutor issued a statement saying the murderers were two “North African youths.” This did not seem unlikely because Van Holsbeeck had been knifed and some Muslim youths are skilled with knives. Though it is illegal in Belgium to slaughter livestock at home, this happens on a very large scale in Brussels during the annual Muslim feast of sacrifice.

Should the police judiciary be ashamed? I don't think so. They reported what was apparent. Young criminals who appeared to be North African immigrants took a life in a city that has a problem with knife wielding North African immigrants. Now that two Polish youths have been arrested much has changed -- but not the fact that Brussels has a problem with Muslim youth gangs. And of the 80,000 strong protest march, in which many Muslims participated, I hope the message is not lost. It is still time to get tough on roving criminal gangs. Muslims still need to ostracize the criminal element in their midst. And the perpetrators of this crime still need to spend the rest of their lives in jail.

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Ty Cobb?

....The statement by Ty Cobb, a lawyer in the Washington office of Hogan & Hartson who said he was speaking for McCarthy, came on the same day that a senior intelligence official said the agency is not asserting that McCarthy was a key source of Priest's award-winning articles last year.....

What surprised me was the lawyer.
Whoever's on second base better watch out for the high spikes.

Gasoline is Cheap

Does anyone smell a rat in this whole high-gas-price kerfuffle?
I mean a media rat... The cost of a fill-up has risen what? maybe fifteen bucks. But we're seeing stories that people are pawning grandma's gold ring in order to get to work. Come on, it's fifteen bucks, anyone who can't budget around that is in the kind of financial condition where grandma's ring would have been gone long ago. And just now on Drudge: a Reuters story,

"Look at the gas prices," Birdsong said at Union Station in Los Angeles. "I just got a new bike. I'm thinking of riding it to the train station instead of driving my car there," she said.

What? Ride a bike 18 miles to save three bucks? Nah, this is a pretend problem ginned up by the talk-the-economy-into-the-ground folks.

Years ago I complained about the price of gas to a friend and he opened my eyes by asking, "Would you push a two thousand pound vehicle miles over hills and potholes for that little amount of money? Would you even push it a mile for the price of a gallon?"
He was right. Not a mile. Call me when gas hits five bucks a gallon.

More Talk-Down-The-Economy:

Sales of Existing Homes Edge Up in March
Apr 25 10:02 AM US/Eastern

AP Economics Writer

Sales of previously owned homes edged up slightly in March but not enough to keep the inventory of unsold homes from hitting a record high as the once-booming housing market continued to flash signals of a slowdown.

The National Association of Realtors said Tuesday that sales of existing homes edged up a tiny 0.3 percent last month to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 6.92 million units.

The March increase followed a bigger 5.1 percent jump in February with the two months representing the first advances since five consecutive monthly declines.

The median price of a new home rose to $218,000 last month, a gain of 7.4 percent from a year ago. That price increase was far slower than the double-digit gains turned in last year as the housing boom was peaking.

Everything is up. Prices, sales, everything. But it's not up enough, see. After a blistering market, any inventory is liable to be a record. So now it's a "once booming" market. Nah, the market, like all complex markets fluctuates. It may go down now, but it might just as easily go up.

I'm in the middle of selling a home, and truth is, these stories used to scare me. One in particular had me thinking that I should take any price I could get because the market collapse was imminent. Then I noticed the dateline; it was a year and a half old.

Monday, April 24, 2006

Kerry Doesn't Get It

From SFGate:

Sen. John Kerry, D-Mass., echoed Harman, saying, "A CIA agent has an obligation to uphold the law, and clearly leaking is against the law. And nobody should leak." But he added: "If you're leaking to tell the truth, Americans are going to look at that, at least mitigate or think about what are the consequences that you ... put on that person."

Hey skipper John, what about Jonathan Pollard? Aldrich Ames? Robert Hanssen?
Didn't those guys tell the truth? What you mean to say is that Mary McCarthy
gave out classified information that was true, but that you approve of that
information being given out. Say what you mean.

And about Mary McCarthy being a democrat supporter -- I don't see where that
has much to do with it. It's interesting that she never leaked while working
for Bill Clinton (who started the practice of "rendition") but really, does it
matter if she exposed classified information merely for political advantage? Would
it have been any different if she had done it for money? Bottom line is that she
has no honor, she took a secrecy oath that she didn't mean to keep, and she did
what she wanted because she wanted it -- without regard for our allies or for what
it would do fo the security of this country. Aldrich Hazen Ames may have had a
different motivation, but really, shave him, and give her a haircut, and they could
be twins.

Global Something or Other

Mark Steyn:

But then in 1998 the planet stopped its very slight global warming and began to resume very slight global cooling. And this time the doom-mongers said, "Look, do we really want to rewrite the bumper stickers every 30 years? Let's just call it 'climate change.' That pretty much covers it."

Sunday, April 23, 2006

The Murder Of Joe Van Holsbeeck - Arrest Soon?

It looks like an arrest may be made in the murder of Joe
Van Holsbeeck. Let's hope the criminals get punishment instead
of excuses for their evil behavior. European tolerance is a good
thing but eventually it becomes time to put your foot down and
say, "this is enough."
Mobile phone call could lead to arrest of Joe's killers:

BRUSSELS — A mobile phone call placed to one of the suspects in the killing of a teenage boy at Brussels Central last week could lead to the arrest of both assailants.

Shortly before 17-year-old Joe Van Holsbeeck was stabbed to death on 12 April, the suspect clothed in a Nike training jacket answered a call on his mobile phone.

The suspect's actions were recorded on the train station's surveillance cameras and might form the crucial element in leading to the arrest of both youths.

Telecoms infrastructure located near the station would have recorded the details of the phone call, such as who rang and who answered it, newspaper 'Le Soir' reported on Thursday.

Meanwhile, the video footage of the two assailants released by police on Wednesday has led to a large amount of tips from the public.

More on the story:
Modern Tribalist: Funeral held for Belgian man stabbed to death by two North Africans

Large crowd expected for silent march

Mary McCarthy

From the NYT, concerning the analyst who apparently quit playing by
the rules:

Colleagues Say C.I.A. Analyst Played by the Rules

WASHINGTON, April 22 — In 1998, when President Bill Clinton ordered military strikes against a suspected chemical weapons factory in Sudan, Mary O. McCarthy, a senior intelligence officer assigned to the White House, warned the president that the plan relied on inconclusive intelligence, two former government officials say.

Ms. McCarthy's reservations did not stop the attack on the factory, which was carried out in retaliation for Al Qaeda's bombing of two American embassies in East Africa. But they illustrated her willingness to challenge intelligence data and methods endorsed by her bosses at the Central Intelligence Agency.

Also, it illustrates that intelligence isn't always a cut and
dried, sure thing. Sometimes the reports disagree, that's why you
have analysts. Sometimes the analysts disagree, that's why you have
bosses. What you can't have is individuals deciding that they are
above the system; being so sure of themselves that they feel ok with
betraying their leaders' trust. Of course Ms McCarthy felt that she
knew better than her superiors. Don't we all? Didn't she consider that
opinions other than her's were taken into account before policy was

And put it this way, if Mary McCarthy had played by the rules and risen
through the ranks to become the Director of the CIA, wouldn't she demand
the allegiance of every single person in the agency? Wouldn't she see to
it that the organization under her care punish the Mary McCarthys who
seek to decide US policy on their own? As they say up north, ja sure,
you betcha she would.

Friday, April 21, 2006

Madeline Albright, Pumping Iron

How could anyone not click on the link? The headline
on Drudge said Madeline Albright can leg press 4oo pounds.
So I clicked and sure enough, if you want someone to lift
the back end of your camper so that you can sweep under
it..... well maybe Madeline saves her super powers for more
important things, but you could use her in a pinch. Anyway,
from the same article, speaking of Condoleezza:

Nowadays Albright is not a fan of certain aspects of Rice's work. She declares that the Iraq invasion "may end up being one of the worst disasters in American foreign policy." She does not believe Saddam was an "imminent threat" and advises, "You can't go to war with everybody you dislike."

OK sure, just for the record though in 1998 she said:
Albright: 'All options open' on Iraq
(CNN) -- The United States is prepared to use "substantial" force against Iraq if diplomatic efforts fail to resolve the crisis over U.N. weapons inspections, U.S. Secretary of State Madeleine Albright said Sunday.

Albright underlined what she said was a continued danger posed by Iraq's weapons of mass destruction. Those weapons, she said, would kill people indiscriminately and therefore pose a threat to the whole Middle East region. Iraq has denied that it possesses weapons of mass destruction.

Do these people think that there are no archives of what was said?
Note to Madeline: CNN writes stuff down sometimes.

Thursday, April 20, 2006

Follow-up To Van Holsbeeck Murder

More on this sad story, Bending Over Backwards in Brussels:

...Joe’s parents opted for a memorial service instead of the traditional funeral Mass. The parish priest of the Catholic St. Elisabeth Church of the Brussels borough of Haren told Belgian radio this morning that the parents wanted to ensure that “immigrants would not feel excluded at the funeral service.”....

.....Earlier this week school friends of Joe’s launched a petition asking the authorities “to initiate a dialogue with young criminals” and warning against racist politicians. Isabelle Kumps, one of Joe’s friends, said that Joe was an anti-racist. “He would have been horrified if his death were to be exploited by a political party.”

I can't imagine that bending over backwards will do any good but
it does highlight the blamelessness of the victims in this case.

More Than Just a French Problem

From the Brussels Journal:

Last Wednesday Joe Van Holsbeeck, 17 years of age, was murdered in Brussels Central Station. He was stabbed five times in the heart by North African youths. They demanded that he give them his MP3 player. When Joe refused he was savagely murdered. The atrocity happened during the evening rush hour on a crowded platform....

...Belgian citizens realize, however, that the murder has nothing to do with “indifference in Belgian society,” but everything with a group of North African youths terrorizing Brussels and the “indifference” of the authorities to eradicate this scourge. Last January five Moroccan youths slit the throat of a 16 year old black boy and left him to bleed to death because he refused to buy a cell phone they had stolen. The murderers have not yet been found. Some Belgians doubt whether Joe’s murderers will ever be found, and if so, how long they will have to serve. In 1998 Patrick Mombaerts, a 32 year old electrician, was murdered by a Moroccan youth who was after his money. The murderer spent only seven months in jail because he was a minor at the time of the murder. The Moroccan thugs do not care about life and they are used to slitting throats – a procedure they get to practise on sheep from a very young age...

It's going to be a slow painful thing, watching Europe slowly come
to the realization that they are under attack. Subway thugs don't
even bother to pretty-up their crimes with the patina of Jihad.

Not living in Europe it's hard for me to judge the extent of the
problem, but from the reports I read from France, Belgium, Scandinavia,
etc. it would seem this is a gathering storm. How bad will it get?
And what severe measures will have to be taken to reverse this trend?

Maybe Europe, and we in the States too, could adopt the measures taken
by, um, give me a minute here to google the name of a country that
doesn't have a problem with Muslims killing westerners. Um, no, not
Spain, caving on troops in Iraq bought them nothing. Well maybe a fair
and accommodating society such as found in the Scandinavian countries...
no, terrorists have been found there too. Ah, but maybe it's the
people who matter, maybe Buddhists can get along with Muslims. Well,
except in Indonesia, or, well, I guess any place you find Buddhists.

OK then, we've got a solution to the problem. The solution is to find
the place where Muslims get along with westerners and just copy
the policies, attitudes, and accommodations that seem to be working
in that peaceful place. First assignment Europe: find that magical

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Losing an illusion makes you wiser than finding a truth

Is there anyone who still thinks the U.N. could
possibly be a force for good in the world? It
was a fine idea, a nice illusion, but it's time
to shut the doors on it and start over. How does
League of Nations sound? Anyway:

Iran Elected to UN Disarmament Commission
By Julie Stahl Jerusalem Bureau Chief
April 17, 2006

Jerusalem ( - Under threat of United Nations Security Council sanctions for its own nuclear program, Iran has been elected to a vice-chair position on the U.N. Disarmament Commission, whose mission includes deliberations on preventing the spread of nuclear weapons.

Iraqi Patriots

When the SUV jihadist made his ineffective and lazy statement
by renting a car with his father's money and driving it into
lounging students, I wondered where the Iraqi Patriots were.
Why didn't it enter this kid's head that he could get his
education, learn a skill, and put it to use in rebuilding the
country he pretended to be so concerned about.

And of course there are many who have done just that. The
brother in law of Mohammed at Iraq the Model came back to use
his skills as a doctor to serve the Iraqi people. Now we find out
through Michelle Malkin that the good doctor has fallen victim
to the assassins who would have Iraq remain in the dark ages.

Well, contrast the two. The stupid kid who makes the absolute least
amount of effort in trying to take innocent lives, with the hard
working young doctor who put his life on the line to help his
people. Who will be remembered? Who will find his place in heaven?

I find myself hoping the SUV slacker gets a high maintenance roommate
in prison.

from Mohammed at Iraq the Model:

The terrorists and criminals are targeting all elements of life and they target anyone who wants to do something good for this country…They think by assassinating one of us they could deter us from going forward but will never succeed, they can delay us for years but we will never go back and abandon our dream.
We have vowed to follow the steps of our true martyrs and we will raise the new generation to continue the march, these children of today are the hope and the future.....

........My God keep safe the Iraqis and their friends who stand with them in their noble cause, peace and prosperity may seem far away but we will get there and I hope our sacrifices be a bridge to a better world.

We're so sorry Mohammed.


Well this is nuts. I was fiddling around with the control
panel in blogger and found that "moderate comments" had been
turned on. So I look and sure enough, there are comments from
as far back as December waiting to be posted. Ooops.
See, expecting the worst, I thought everyone had just slowly
lost interest. It never occurred to me that blogger was to blame.
Anyway, working now.

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Cookie Alert

Note to Girl Scouts: That new Cafe cookie needs a warning label.
And they should possibly be banned for sale to anyone who's not
using them to wean themselves off of a intractable habit of
eating poker chips. Good Lord what were you thinking? Those things
can break off teeth. (and the only way you'd know that a tooth
was in the mix would be because the tooth would be slightly easier
to chew)

Monday, April 17, 2006

Jane Fonda, tired activist

From Breibart:

Jane Fonda says she would like to tour the country and speak out against U.S. involvement in Iraq, but her controversial history of Vietnam War protests leaves her with "too much baggage."

"I wanted to do a tour like I did during the Vietnam War, a tour of the country," the Oscar-winning actress said Monday on ABC's "Good Morning America." "But then Cindy Sheehan filled in the gap, and she is better at this than I am. I carry too much baggage."

I have to thank Jane Fonda for knocking loose the plug in
my head that prevented actual thought back when I was a student
radical. Maybe it would be a good idea to bring her back to
tour the US, enlightening students everywhere as to what this
Iraq thing is about. See, I thought I was antiwar. I wore the
spray painted white-dove-on-blue t-shirt. I wished for a chance
to throw a tear gas canister back at the national guard. I was
on the lookout for a sturdy antiwar girlfriend to help tie my
black armband. Then came Jane.

Everyone I knew was excited about her visit to the University
of Maryland -- this was history; this was revolution. This was
going to be another afternoon of taking over Rout 1, of throwing
rocks at the book exchange. Until Jane opened her mouth.

See, there had been a change in plans, we were no longer trying
to get the troops brought home. Well we were, only in body bags. Jane
told us how the tide was turning in Vietnam and how the vietcong
were gaining strength. And it's been too many years to quote her
exactly but the gist of her message was that more bodybags would
be needed and that meant we were winning. I looked around the
mob for other faces registering shock but I didn't find any. All
around me were cheering dove sporting college boys, still trying
to angle their eyes through the armholes of Jane's sleeveless
blouse. Was I the only one who noticed that we'd gone from
war-is-not-the-answer, to dead-amerikan-soldiers-IS-the-answer?
She called in an angry voice for the deaths of our soldiers, I can't
quote her words but I remember thinking that she would have been happy
to pull the trigger herself. She spoke of stacking the bodies.

I say go for it Jane. Tour the US and distill this thing down to
it's component parts. Cheer the beheadings and car bombings. You
can help write the new antiwar mission statement. Make the choices

Just saw the video of her recent interview, linked from
Michelle Malkin.
Jane called the film of her on the vietcong antiaircraft battery
a "horrible lapse in judgement." No, that's a lie. At that point
Jane Fonda was all about defeating the US and killing GIs. It wasn't
a one time stupid thing. Getting on that gun was Jane Fonda. Pretending
that it was an aberration is just a lie.

Friday, April 14, 2006

Gen. Swannack Sneaks Up From Behind

Don't turn your back, Rummy!

From the Washington Post:

Army Maj. Gen. Charles H. Swannack Jr., the commander of the 82nd Airborne Division, who spent much of the year in western Iraq, said he believes that at the tactical level at which fighting occurs, the U.S. military is still winning. But when asked whether he believes the United States is losing, he said, "I think strategically, we are."

Army Col. Paul Hughes, who last year was the first director of strategic planning for the U.S. occupation authority in Baghdad, said he agrees with that view and noted that a pattern of winning battles while losing a war characterized the U.S. failure in Vietnam. "Unless we ensure that we have coherency in our policy, we will lose strategically," he said in an interview Friday.

How can we lose strategically? Hughes has got it right; as in Vietnam,
we can lose strategically when the will of the American people is broken.
This might be one thing we all can agree on, democrat, republican, liberal,
conservative, and, most importantly, terrorists, all of us know the only
possible way to make the US cut and run -- bog them down, break their spirit.

And it's not surprising that this minority of generals have axes to grind
with the Secretary of Defense. I'm sure they all have their own visions of
how the effort should be, and should have been, conducted. And with all the
differing views, the final strategy is bound to disappoint some of them.
It's how they're handling this disappointment that just amazes me. These few
generals somehow decided that the best way for them to affect the rebuilding
effort in Iraq was to throw their lots in with the anti-Iraqi-forces. These
generals, who still must know soldiers fighting and dying in Iraq, are giving
the AIF hope. They are adding their weight to the effort to snap the will of
the American people.

The photoshop of Gen. Swannack preparing to stab Rumsfeld in the back is a
little harsh. Much harsher would have been the depiction of the real victim
of these generals' irresponsible actions -- the American soldier still in

Thursday, April 13, 2006

Teddy Lays Out a Strategy

Murtha Takes a Stand

No Nuance Involved

Just In Case the First One Gets Lost

The Name Doesn't Matter

From the Opinion Journal yesterday:

Who's to Blame for Radical Islam?
.... described by London's Daily Telegraph:

European governments should shun the phrase "Islamic terrorism" in favour of "terrorists who abusively invoke Islam", say guidelines from EU officials.

Backed by diplomats and civil servants from the 25 EU members, the officials are drafting a "non-emotive lexicon for discussing radicalisation" to be submitted to Tony Blair and other leaders in June. . . .

Here's the thing, it doesn't matter if you start calling terrorists
Pretty Fluffy Clouds, before long people will come to know what Pretty
Fluffy Clouds are and what they stand for. Do they target children
receiving candy and toys from American soldiers? Well then, Pretty
Fluffy Clouds need to be hunted down like dogs.
What about the rest of Islam; the Muslims who are not terrorists? They
will come to be known for what they are. Do they support the Fluffy Clouds?
Did they cheer on the morning of 9-11? Do they support the murder of
Christian converts? Well, you can call them what you like, they too will
become known for what they are.

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

L Ron Hubbard's Foot Soldier

Tom Cruise is again in the news? You think Tom Cruise criticizing
psychiatric drugs might be a little like the man-overboard pointing
out the shortcomings of life preservers?

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Washington Post Poll

So the Washington Post has Bush at a new low. Maybe. The Post
isn't above sampling 70% Democrats, or setting up their
demographic from Barbara Streisand's Christmas list, so we'll
see if this poll means anything or not. But it is true that
if anyone getting their news from the television or the NYT is
more pessimistic than they were a month ago. Why would that
be? The numbers of deaths in Iraq don't show it. How is it that
exaggeration and selected anecdotes can sway opinion so effectively?

Political reversals at home and continued bad news from Iraq have dragged President Bush's standing with the public to a new low, at the same time that Republican fortunes on Capitol Hill also are deteriorating, according to the latest Washington Post-ABC News poll.

The survey found that 38 percent of the public approve of the job Bush is doing, down three percentage points in the past month and his worst showing in Post-ABC polling since he became president. Sixty percent disapprove of his performance.

Monday, April 10, 2006

You tell 'um Ben

From Newsbusters:

Ben Affleck: Bush 'Can Be Hung' for 'Probably' Leaking Plame's Name
Posted by Brent Baker on April 8, 2006 - 02:16.

Reminiscent of Al Franken on the Late Show last October, on Friday's Real Time with Bill Maher on HBO, actor Ben Affleck charged that President Bush “probably also leaked” Valerie Plame's name and so “if he did, you can be hung for that! That's treason!” In full rant, an apoplectic Affleck asserted: “You could be killed. That's not a joking around Tom DeLay 'I'll do a year, I bribed the state officials with corporate money.' That's like they shoot you in the battlefield for doing that.”

Cheese und crackers, doesn't anybody read anymore?
And this is after Bill Sammon told him:
Bill Sammon, Washington Examiner: “A lot of critics are conflating the two and are saying that because Bush disclosed this piece of information, they're implying that Bush leaked the name.”

Ben Affleck: “He probably also leaked the name. There's just no proof of that.”

Sammon: “Even the prosecutor, even Fitzgerald is saying Bush didn't leak the name."

Way to ruin every movie I ever might want to see you in
again Ben. You're a tool.

OK, (via Belmont Club, and many other places) there's an antidote
to Affleck's bile at Families United. Just a snip:
I was angry when Robert was killed, but I have taken my anger and turned it into something positive. I proudly support our troops every Wednesday at a support rally in Plymouth and work with the local VFW Post 1822 sending packages to our troops overseas. I fight for benefits for the soliders and their families. I've done news conferences with Governor Mitt Romney. I wonder why the media will not run stories about how much good the troops are doing, as well as the work we are doing for the military. They need to keep up their morale. We are making a difference in Iraq.

There is a hospital that was built in Kuwait City. It is called the SFC Robert Rooney Triage Center. I receive letters and pictures from soldiers over there who we don't even know. Frequently they thank my husband, a man they knew less than a year. I would love to send these soldiers newspaper articles with positive stories about the war effort at home and let them know that the American people support their mission.

Goat on a Pole

It's probably important to know that you live in a world
where this sort of thing goes on. I more or less feel that
well, ok, that's weird. Others though have made a philosophy
out of it.

Saturday, April 08, 2006

Working for a Living

2 guys made the girl fooled?

Possibly posted by a non-native english speaker.
It's funny though; 1 guy at computer made the
pants peed.

Where's the beer dude?

Ready for the race.

Friday, April 07, 2006

Matt Parker and Trey Stone

As Cartman says, "Man I love you guys."

Just like when I was 12, I'm waiting anxiously for the next installment of my favorite cartoon. (South Park, of course) Why? Because Parker and Stone have had the guts to address what the mainstream media has been pussy-footing around ever since the Mohammed cartoons came out. This is a freedom of speech issue, and it's a wimp-out issue, and it's also an issue of Muslims working themselves up into a frenzy; not so much because they have been wronged, because they like raging at the west.

I am genuinely sorry if there were Muslims who were offended by the original Danish cartoons. The Piss Christ and dozens of other "works of art" that attempt to denigrate Christianity offend me. But I don't seek out such things - I haven't seen Christian leaders going around the country trying to whip the masses into a frenzy about them - and I certainly haven't seen those leaders making up worse examples themselves and asserting that they come from the artists. What shameful leaders those Imams were, to do worse than the original cartoons in order enrage their followers.

Well, those followers may get another chance to be offended next week when Part Two of the Mohammed episode runs. If you missed Part One, the Officers' Club has a pretty fair synopsis. Who knows if Comedy Central will allow it to run. They changed their programming once because the Scientologists got upset. And in that case, there was probably no danger of enraged followers storming the studio..... well, maybe Tom Cruise, but I understand he's not so big really.



Wednesday, April 05, 2006

NBC responds

They must be interested.

Thank you for your E-Mail to Dateline NBC. We
are very pleased with the enormous response we
are getting.

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Fishing For Bigots at Nascar

sent to

Dear highly ethical newspeople,

I was wondering why you don't just hire actors to play the
bigots at nascar events in your new planned-news exposé? I mean,
you know what you're looking for right? Of course you can find
any behavior you want in a crowd of fifty thousand, but why go
looking for it? Sure, you can have your "innocent" Muslims
scowling and staring down patrons before you start filming, but
what if only one patron in twenty takes the bait? That might
mean that you have to go through 100 people just to find the
5 "typical" a-holes you need to prove your point. I'm sorry,
not "prove your point," I meant to say, "before you regretfully
come to your conclusion."

Think about it. For a nominal fee, I can provide you with some
pretty scary guys. We'll be as crude as you require and we
all have our own wife-beater t-shirts. I wouldn't need a
fortune to do this; just beer for the event and enough money
to pay for getting my Evinrude repaired. (hit a stump)

Get back to me,
We'll make news by golly,
Rodger Thomas

No response from them yet.



Monday, April 03, 2006

Paging Thomas Malthus

You've probably read about the lizard expert, Dr. Pianka, who
is calling for a 90% reduction in the population in order to
save the earth. In other words, kill the people to save the dirt.
OK, so he's a lone nut. Getting a degree in lizardry doesn't
necessarily mean you can work your remote control(s) or finish
your 1040 by yourself. And, who cares that he forgot to look
at the publication date when he picked up Malthus and started
his journey into bold-new-theory land.

What interested me was an observation by Forrest Mims in his
critique of Pianka's speech:

But there was a gravely disturbing side to that otherwise scientifically significant meeting, for I watched in amazement as a few hundred members of the Texas Academy of Science rose to their feet and gave a standing ovation to a speech that enthusiastically advocated the elimination of 90 percent of Earth's population by airborne Ebola. The speech was given by Dr. Eric R. Pianka, the University of Texas evolutionary ecologist and lizard expert who the Academy named the 2006 Distinguished Texas Scientist.

OK, I'm easily amused but I wanted to be there to see their
faces; each one of them thinking that it was the other 9 closest
guys who would be scheduled for dirtification.

It Feels Just Right Out Today

George Will has got it all wrong. He says, "In fact,
the Earth is always experiencing either warming or cooling."
Folish man. Doesn't he know that there used to be what
we called "climate," but then the earth finally got to
just the right temperature and stopped. Now, if there
is any change in global temperature, it's due to those
Republicans in Cars.

Anyway, in the article he puts together a nice list:

While worrying about Montana's receding glaciers, Schweitzer, who is 50, should also worry about the fact that when he was 20 he was told to be worried, very worried, about global cooling. Science magazine (Dec. 10, 1976) warned of "extensive Northern Hemisphere glaciation." Science Digest (February 1973) reported that "the world's climatologists are agreed" that we must "prepare for the next ice age." The Christian Science Monitor ("Warning: Earth's Climate is Changing Faster Than Even Experts Expect," Aug. 27, 1974) reported that glaciers "have begun to advance," "growing seasons in England and Scandinavia are getting shorter" and "the North Atlantic is cooling down about as fast as an ocean can cool." Newsweek agreed ("The Cooling World," April 28, 1975) that meteorologists "are almost unanimous" that catastrophic famines might result from the global cooling that the New York Times (Sept. 14, 1975) said "may mark the return to another ice age." The Times (May 21, 1975) also said "a major cooling of the climate is widely considered inevitable" now that it is "well established" that the Northern Hemisphere's climate "has been getting cooler since about 1950."

Saturday, April 01, 2006

The Truth is Out

La Shawn Barber, I mean I finally admitted it. I'm not
really La Shawn Barber. No, I mean, she's not La Shawn Barber,
I am. If you don't believe me, La Shawn Barber, then just ask her.

I mean, me.


I deliberately didn't read any of the articles about the
Christian Peacemakers Team's reactions following the
rescue of their members. I expected them to be ungracious.
The surprise would have been if they had acknowledged the
help of the British and US forces that freed them. So it was
by accident I ran across this:

Dozens of Christian Web sites and blogs — including some with critical opinions of Islam — have used "martyr" to describe peace activist Tom Fox of Clear Brook, Va., whose bullet-ridden body was found March 10, more than three months after he was abducted by a group calling itself Swords of Righteousness Brigades. His three colleagues from Christian Peacemaker Teams were freed March 23 in a U.S.-British raid.

The peacemaker teams appealed to Christians not to use Fox's death as a rallying cry against Muslims. "We ask that everyone set aside inclinations to vilify or demonize others, no matter what they have done," CPT said in a statement.

I think that just about says it all as far as the CPT is
concerned. They set aside their inclinations to vilify
evil. Vilify US forces? Well, that's a different story.
Message to CPT - if something is wrong, it's ok to call it
wrong. Tom Fox was killed because he was American, Christian,
and naive. The Muslims you are so intent on protecting
from blame had to know that he was not a threat. They did
murder and it was wrong. It was evil. Now go hum kumbaya.

Anyway, I was reading the article because it dealt with
martyrdom. And I am still in awe of Abdul Rahman, who was
given the chance to renounce his faith to escape death. What
an amazing thing his choice was. It's easy to tell myself
that I could have done that, I'm sitting in a lumber camp
with the birdies all around. It's a different matter when
death is chilling the room, making the candles gutter. And
had push come to shove, Abdul Rahman would have been a martyr.

As to the rest of the article, I'm reminded that there are
two definitions of martyr:
1. One who chooses to suffer death rather than renounce religious principles.

2. One who makes a great show of suffering in order to arouse sympathy.

I don't think it's helpful to argue as to who falls into which
category. Suffice it to say there are too many of both types in
the middle east these days.

And also...... test driving Technorati to see if it
was getting pinged, I searched "martyr" and got this
at the top of the list:
For the latest information on sports, concert, theater events, and Martyr's, please enter your email address below to subscribe to our TicketsNow eNewsletter and receive email updates.
Martyr's tickets are currently not available.

Well, that's comforting information.

Programming Language Inventor? or Serial Killer?

Can you tell by a picture? Take the quiz.