quasi in rem

Friday, July 30, 2004

As to Kerry's 40,000 increase...

I think that would constitue a 3% increase in active duty personnel, or 2% if reserves are taken into account (as well they should be).

Not exactly groundbreaking...

The history gaps in Kerry's record...: "John Kerry last night presented himself as the survivor of some kind of freak accident: Like a man waking up from a coma, he doesn�t seem able to remember anything he did between 1969 and September 11, 2001."

I find it a tad amusing that the Republicans would point out Kerry's desire to keep certain parts of his history under wraps because ti paints him as a liberal.

Our current President has certain gaps in his history too. And they aren't especially attractive either.

Thursday, July 29, 2004

Nice ballooons...

Nice ballooons...

Al Quaeda Sting in Boston Finally Pays Off...

Federal Authorities were elated today when their four day sting operation in Boston's Fleet Center, popularly described as the Democratic Convention, but really a ruse designed to draw out Al Qaeda operatives, netted two important and dangerous terrorists. Purportedly the terrore=ist were on their way to the convention to see the grand finale.

"I think it was Sharpton calling Bush a racist and a segregationist that really sold them on the veracity of the event as an Al Qaeda pep rally," United State Attorney paul Giamatti stated," Until that point the suspects were dubious that the speakers truly hated Bush as much as they did."

More Good News: "Pakistan has arrested a senior al Qaeda figure with a bounty of up to $25 million on his head, Interior Minister Makhdoom Faisal Saleh Hayat told CNN television Thursday.

He said the suspect had been captured during a raid in central Pakistan a few days ago. He did not identify the captive but said he was 'a person who is most wanted internationally.'

Al Arabiya satellite news channel quoted Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf as saying the suspect was arrested Sunday.

'The Pakistani president said the arrested person is Tanzanian who is married to an Uzbek woman, and who is wanted by the United States,' the station said. "

A rare spotting of the mythical Big Face.



Big Face makes his home in the jungles of South East Asia, as well Martha's Vineyard and Nantucket. This rare shot of Big Face was thought to be shot with its own camera.

Big Face can be deadly boring children so watch out....

Kerry's Speech....: "'Members of the Fourth Estate, I called you here today to tell you your reign is over,' Kerry said as technicians checked his voice levels in preparation for his prime-time address to accept the Democratic presidential nomination."

Not to shabby. A page right out of the Reagan handbook...

If only that was the real one.....

Do not click if you are a Muslim or are easily offended (or have no interest in women's underwear...)

The Manchurian Prom Date

MTV is running a completely vacuous contest called Stand Up and Holla! where a young person will earn the right (thorugh the most honest and democratic process known to man, the online vote,) to go and deliver a speech at the Republican National Convention.

Now you know one of these speakers has got to be the plant, the Manchurian Prom Date, some bright young 'un who figured out that the could get onto the stage and then start screaming "Where are the Weapons of Mass Destruction!! Vote Kerry/Edwards! Impeach Bush!" ala Kucinich until the guards come rumbling home.

Can you imagine the cheerleader/slutty thespian action he or she could get if they pulled off that manuever? Limitless. Instant celebrity. And despite the momentary embarassment that I would feel for my party, the entertainment value would out weigh that.

So who is the plant?

Sheri Valera is wayyy to hot to be a Republican...but she does appear to be a little dim. Maybe one of those stepford Crawford wives in training. Not a plant.

Dan seems likely. He uses the phrase of the competition in his essay in order to ingratiate himself to the sponsors. And there is some fake schmatlz thrown in too. Probably not a plant.

I think Reza Torkzadeh is some sort of Mujahadeen. The story is supposed to be about communtiy service but his involves somebody killing someone or something? In Iran? Definitely not a Democrat. Probably will come armed though so still some possible entertainment value.

I think Priscilla is the plant. First she is Black. So there is a 90% chance she is a democrat. Secnd she uses this phrase in her essay:

"Instead of Generation X, he inspires us to be what I call Generations X-ample..."

Which is just brilliant. First it is purposefully out of date. These kids are generation Y, barely, if not z by now, but middle aged judges do not know that. Second it is a little goofy while appearing earnest. Just the right touch. Seems prototypically Republican Youth. A little tooo perfect, if you know what I mean...

I am voting for Priscilla to win. She is going to rock that house!

(unfortunately I cannot figure out how to vote...but if I could Priscilla would be the one!)

Robert George...THIEF!

I might be the only one, but I have a feeling that at those Wendys anniversary dinners, Elizabeth Edwards probably supersizes her order.

Wednesday, July 28, 2004

John Edwards...mob ties?

This is why government workers should not be allowed to vote...

What has two thumbs and will lose in November?



This guy!

Edwards Speech...from the future...

Who does Ben Affleck really support for President?

Maybe its because he is hoping for walk on role in his next sit com...

Barrack "One America" Obama!"

The very best part of Barrack speech was the "one America" part.

"Now even as we speak, there are those who are preparing to divide us, the spin masters and negative ad peddlers who embrace the politics of anything goes.

Well, I say to them tonight, there's not a liberal America and a conservative America -- there is the United States of America.

There's not a black America and white America and Latino America and Asian America -- there is the United States of America.

The pundits, the pundits like to slice and dice our country into red states and blue states; red states for Republicans, blue states for Democrats. But I've got news for them, too. We worship an awesome God in the blue states, and we don't like federal agents poking around our libraries in the red states.

We coach Little League in the blue states and have gay friends in the red states.

There are patriots who opposed the war in Iraq and patriots who supported it.

We are one people, all of us pledging allegiance to the stars and stripes, all of us defending the United States of America.



One America, I really like that.

I wonder what John Edwards is going to talk about in his big speech tonight?

Could it be something like this:

Today, under George W. Bush, there are two Americas, not one: One America that does the work, another America that reaps the reward. One America that pays the taxes, another America that gets the tax breaks. One America that will do anything to leave its children a better life, another America that never has to do a thing because its children are already set for life. One America -- middle-class America - whose needs Washington has long forgotten, another America - narrow-interest America - whose every wish is Washington's command. One America that is struggling to get by, another America that can buy anything it wants, even a Congress and a President.


Wha wha what???? Two Americas??? For shame! Dividing America like that! Evil divider! Influence peddler!


Ron Reagan Jr, The Tool of the Democratic Convention

I am not one to fisk for fisks sake, but last nights little diatribe by Ron Reagan Junior on Embryonic Stem cell research was just completely ridiculous on so many levels, I simply must vent on the topic. First the dishonesty bit:

"Let me assure you, I am not here to make a political speech and the topic at hand should not — must not — have anything to do with partisanship
....

Whatever else you do come Nov. 2, I urge you, please, cast a vote for embryonic stem cell research. "


Please. I don't which is sadder: if Ron Reagan Jr. did not really think he was making a political speech or if he really thinks he can convince people he is not making one. Showing up and speaking a NATIONAL POLITICAL CONVENTION which is nominating a party standard bearer and announcing that your speech is not political is akin to speaking at a Klan rally but saying that your speech is not about racism.

Next onto the guts about stem cell research. His point seems to be that the only possible reason to be against embryonic stem cell research is that God told you to be. Well God hasn't told me any such thing. I really have no idea what God's position on embryonic stem cell research is, I have read most of the Bible and I can't find the word embryo in there anywhere.

My real problem is, I used to be an embryo. So did you. And Ron Reagan Jr. Heck even John Kerry was an embryo at one point.

My memories of the experience are a little hazy, granted, but I believe there was a lot of moving, and, despite rapid weight gain, little worry.

But back to his views on the matter:
I am here tonight to talk about the issue of research into what may be the greatest medical breakthrough in our or any lifetime: the use of embryonic stem cells — cells created using the material of our own bodies — to cure a wide range of fatal and debilitating illnesses: Parkinson’s disease, multiple sclerosis, diabetes, lymphoma, spinal cord injuries and much more.


His key quote "cells created using the materials of our own bodies" is completely disengenuous. To end the description there, he would be describing adult stem cell research. Yes we have stem cells too, every where. In our skin, teeth and bone marrow.

Embryonic stem cell research would be more accurately described as cells created by creating, mutating, and destroying and embryo. Or is it? Let's hear Ron Jr. describe it...


Now, imagine going to a doctor who, instead of prescribing drugs, takes a few skin cells from your arm. The nucleus of one of your cells is placed into a donor egg whose own nucleus has been removed. A bit of chemical or electrical stimulation will encourage your cell’s nucleus to begin dividing, creating new cells which will then be placed into a tissue culture. Those cells will generate embryonic stem cells containing only your DNA, thereby eliminating the risk of tissue rejection. These stem cells are then driven to become the very neural cells that are defective in Parkinson’s patients. And finally, those cells — with your DNA — are injected into your brain where they will replace the faulty cells whose failure to produce adequate dopamine led to the Parkinson’s disease in the first place.


Why it sounds just magical. And no embryo's are invovled at all! We have a donor egg and a tissue culture. Why is it even call embryonic stem cell research? It should be called "those cells" stem cell research.

Yes, these cells could theoretically have the potential, under very different circumstances, to develop into human beings — that potential is where their magic lies. But they are not, in and of themselves, human beings. They have no fingers and toes, no brain or spinal cord. They have no thoughts, no fears. They feel no pain.

Surely we can distinguish between these undifferentiated cells multiplying in a tissue culture and a living, breathing person — a parent, a spouse, a child.


So this is what I do not get:

1. Creating a little potential person and then stopping development is ok, because it is not really a person, and then destroying that little potential person is still ok, because you can get stem cells to grow yourself a new liver.

2. But creating a little actual person and then killing it is not ok.

It is all about where you draw the line. But to say that because someone is not a living person person it is ok to kill is the simplest rendition of bioethics I have ever heard.

It seems to me that if creating a little clone of yourself in a test tube and then destoying that clone to get stem cells to grow yourself a new liver or heart or whatever is ok, then why draw the line there?

Why not let the little embryo grow until it grows an actual heart or liver and then use that heart or liver for yourself?

What is the difference? A few months? It is the same being. Just a little older. If one is ok, they should both be ok.

And then this:
I know a child — well, she must be 13 now — I guess I’d better call her a young woman. She has fingers and toes. She has a mind. She has memories. She has hopes. She has juvenile diabetes. Like so many kids with this disease, she’s adjusted amazingly well. The — the insulin pump she wears — she’s decorated hers with rhinestones. She can handle her own catheter needle. She’s learned to sleep through the blood drawings in the wee hours of the morning.
.

Did you know that adult stem cell research has had several breakthoughs in finding the cure for juvenile diabetes? Well you wouldn't if you were at the democratic convention.

But this patrt in his conclusion..
And for all of us in this fight, let me say: we will prevail. The tide of history is with us. Like all generations who have come before ours, we are motivated by a thirst for knowledge and compelled to see others in need as fellow angels on an often difficult path, deserving of our compassion.


Is true. Bioethics has always lost to our natural curiosity. It always will. Humans always find a way to rationalize away the better angels of our judgment in the search for short term satisfaction. We will make Frankenstein's monster. It is only a matter of time.

I for one look forward to my little organ doning clone version of myself. For too long I have been abastaing for copious amounts of alcohol for fear that it will hurt my liver.

No more!

It is bacon for every meal! Vodka for breakfast! Supersize it please!

I think I will name my clone organ donor Ronny, in honor of you Mr Reagan Jr.

Tuesday, July 27, 2004

I would like this for Christmas please...

Monday, July 26, 2004

here he is at Haverford...

Here he is going from Irvine to Bryn Mawr...

Is this him also? ALLIED SOCIAL SCIENCE ASSOCIATIONS, January 3-5, 1999, New York, NY: "Urban Evolution in the USA,' *Duncan Black"

SSRN Author Page for Duncan Black

Is Atrios Duncan Balck?

This is a real headline:
"Gay Channel Coming Out with Cher, Cumming Projects"

Monday, July 19, 2004

James Moore's Run from Pittsburgh to Washington

A good cause and an interesting read.

Check it out.

Saturday, July 17, 2004

Armstrong takes command...

Now he only has Ivan Basso to worry about really, barring an accident. Basso is a comparably weak timne trialer so all things being equal, Armstrong should pevail.

He is a clear favorite to win his 6th straight Tour de France.

Amazing.

Armstrong takes command...

Now he only has Ivan Basso to worry about really, barring an accident. Basso is a comparably weak timne trialer so all things being equal, Armstrong should pevail.

He is a clear favorite to win his 6th straight Tour de France.

Amazing.

Friday, July 16, 2004

Stick it to the Man! (not me, the other the man)



or...


Letters from a Nantucket Mansion!

The Million-aire March

Next wife? Oprah!

Black Amex Card Power!

We didn't land on Plymouth Rock! We bought it, built a nice exclusive country club, and prevented wind farms there because they would block our ocean view!






Sucks to be John Edwards brother...

Dave Kopel has Fifty-nine Deceits in Fahrenheit 911:

It is a well researched piece with responses from Moore. the response are less than responsive in most cases and it leads Kopel to ask the question:

"Do the many falsehoods and misrepresentations of Fahrenheit 9/11 suggest a film producer who just makes careless mistakes? Or does a man who calls Americans: "possibly the dumbest people on the planet" believe that his audience will be too dumb to tell when he is tricking them? Viewers will have to decide for themselves whether the extremist and extremely deceptive Fahrenheit 9/11 is a conscientious work of patriotic dissent, or the cynical propaganda of a man who gives wartime aid to America's murderous enemies, and who accepts their aid in return."

I geuss I can quit my diet....: "Medicare now recognizes obesity as an illness, a change in policy that may allow millions of overweight Americans to make medical claims for treatments such as stomach surgery and diet programs.
Health and Human Services Secretary Tommy Thompson said, 'Obesity is a critical public health problem in our country that causes millions of Americans to suffer unnecessary health problems and to die prematurely.'"

Thank you American taxpayer for funding my McDonald's, Wendy's and KFC dreams. With your help, I will never have to eat another salad again!

TArmstrong is making his move!

He has already dropped Ullrich and Hamilton.

5 Months in Prison...

That sucks.

I just recently visited a prison.

My new rule for life is:

"Never go to prison."

Thursday, July 15, 2004

The Politics of Truth:

More Wilson stories...(hey everyone can play this game!).

This is from a Talon Interview in 2003:

"TN: Regarding the mission to Niger to investigate the possibility of Iraq purchasing uranium to develop nuclear weapons, why were you selected to go?
Wilson: . . . I was selected to go to Niger because there was maybe one other person in the U.S. government who knew those who had been in office at the time this purported agreement memorandum was signed, and his credibility was somewhat damaged not by anything he did, but by the fact that he had been an ambassador out there and as a consequence, he had to be the daily point of friction with the military junta during the time he was out there. I was senior director for African affairs at the time. I started my career in Niger and had a whole series of relationships and a great credibility with that group of people who had been in power at the time.

I also happen to know a fair amount about the uranium business, having served in 3 of the 4 countries in Africa that produce uranium, including having been ambassador to the Gabonese Republic which is also a uranium exporter.

TN: Did your wife suggest you for the mission?

Wilson: No.
The decision to ask me to go out to Niger was taken in a meeting at which there were about a dozen analysts from both the CIA and the State Department. A couple of them came up and said to me when we're going through the introductory phase, "We have met at previous briefings that you have done on other subjects, Africa-related."

Not one of those at that meeting could I have told you what they look like, would I recognize on the street, or remember their name today. And as old as I am, I can still recognize my wife, and I still do remember her name. That was the meeting at which the decision was made to ask me if I would clear my schedule to go."

But the internal memo does come up...

"TN: An internal government memo prepared by U.S. intelligence personnel details a meeting in early 2002 where your wife, a member of the agency for clandestine service working on Iraqi weapons issues, suggested that you could be sent to investigate the reports. Do you dispute that?

Wilson: I don't know anything about a meeting, I can only tell you about the meeting I was at where I was asked if I would prepare to go, and there was nobody at that meeting that I know. Now that fact that my wife knows that I know a lot about the uranium business and that I know a lot about Niger and that she happens to be involved in weapons of mass destruction, it should come as no surprise to anyone that we know of each others activities."

and this..

"Wilson: Well in the particular piece of this that I own, the trip to Niger, the CIA produced my report, but there were two other reports produced that said that "Gee this story of uranium going to Iraq is just bogus." Subsequent to that we now know this particular "16 words" were the subject of a number of telephone conversations and a couple of memoranda that somehow were lost in the system or forgotten about. But the two uncontested facts in this matter are the following: The 16 words in the State of the Union did not rise to inclusion in the State of the Union, that's the White House's statement. Had my report or the other two reports been accepted instead of this information that was based as we know on forgeries and even at the time didn't pass the smell test for an Italian weekly tabloid, then the President would not have found himself in this predicament. That is not a CIA betrayal of the political system, that is if anything a political betrayal of the intelligence assessment process.

And the second uncontested fact is that a national security asset's name was leaked to the American public in what may have been a crime but certainly is considered to be of sufficient concern to the CIA that they referred the matter to the Justice Department. Now in neither of those it seems to me do you have nefarious CIA involvement unless you are prepared to make the argument that the CIA would have "outed" one of its own, which seems to me to be highly, highly unlikely."

And don't expect any apologies from Wilson...

"TN: If it's determined that in fact there was no leak, that no crime was committed, are you prepared to take back some of the things you've said?

Wilson: Well, actually what I have said is that I would support the investigation, and the investigation will turn up what the investigation turns up. And if there is anything to take back in all of this, it would only be the handcuffs part of the frog-marching out of the White House. Because irrespective of whether or not the Justice Department determines that there was a crime committed and there is prosecution of that crime, even in this bare-knuckles town of Washington, it is below the belt of politics to drag a family member out into the public square to administer a beating because you find yourself unable to adequately discredit her husband who is your adversary in this particular matter."

This is how persuasive John Edwards is.....

He is so persuasive that he has been able to convince his wife that Wendy's is an appropriate location for their anniversary dinner.

That is impressive.

For about three months now i have been trying to convince my wife that the traditional third anniversary gift is styrofoam.. No luck yet, clearly I do not possess John Edwards power of persuasion.

Was John Edwards selected by global domination super group? that is the question asked in this article which wonders if the: "Bilderberg confab now molding domestic American policy."

John Kerry....The Diddler!

How times have changed in professional golf....

I am in a British Open Pool this weekend and my threesome is Tiger Woods, Davis Love II and Tomas Bjorn (none of whom are doing particularly well).

The strange thing is that we picked players through a draft and even though I got Tiger Woods, I did not have the first pick.

That was Ernie Els.

Nor the second, who was Vijay Singh.

Nor the third, who was Phil Mickelson.

I had the fourth pick.

Time was that the picks would be Tiger Woods vs. everyone else and you might still get better than even odds.

Not anymore.

Wednesday, July 14, 2004

Ditka Says No to U.S. Senate Run: "Former Chicago Bears Coach Mike Ditka said Wednesday night that he won't run for the U.S. Senate, leaving Illinois Republicans still desperate for a replacement candidate.
Ditka made his announcement outside his Chicago restaurant.
Ditka says he doesn't know what he would do on the Senate floor if he got into a confrontation with someone he didn't appreciate or didn't appreciate him.
He says he thought about running, but then said to himself to 'get his head on straight and really think about it.'
There had been a growing sentiment that Ditka was perhaps the Illinois GOP's best shot at holding onto a seat that will be vacated in January when Senator Peter Fitzgerald retires.
A string of Republican leaders had lined up behind Ditka in recent days"

They are lumberjacks and they are ok.

"The Yukon has become the fourth jurisdiction in the country to legalize gay marriages.

Justice Peter McIntyre ordered the Yukon government Wednesday to change its definition of marriage to, "the voluntary union for life of two persons, to the exclusion of all others".

The Yukon Supreme Court also ruled that two gay men, Stephene Dunbar and Rob Edge, should be able to marry, and they will, this Saturday.

A lawyer for the two men said his clients were discriminated against when the territory turned down their request for a marriage licence. "

Monday, July 12, 2004

A man on the Hill.....gets around...

As many of you may know I had lunch with ths guy on Friday.

Well today I had lunch with this guy, this guy, this guy, and this guy.

It was nice.

No really he does not want you to vote against Bush....: "Democrats have snagged a high-profile speaker for this month's convention -- Ron Reagan.

The son of the late President Reagan will address the Democratic National Convention in Boston about stem cell research.

He's been critical of the Bush administration's restriction of federal funding for human embryonic stem cell research, and the war in Iraq.

Ron and Nancy Reagan have argued the research could lead to cures for a number of diseases, including the Alzheimer's disease that afflicted the late president.

Reagan says he wants to use the speech as a platform to educate about stem cell research -- not to call for throwing Bush out of office"

Friday, July 09, 2004

If you have'nt seen it, don't worry, you are not missing anything..

USATODAY.com - Armstrong falls near Tour de France start

But he is back up and riding...

Kay Bailey gets the reaction she wanted....

It is possible that she sincerely felt that Judge Holmes could not do a good job.

It is also possible that she planting the seeds for re-election.

Thursday, July 08, 2004

Not one.: "The unanimous report by the panel will say there is no evidence that intelligence officials were subjected to pressure to reach particular conclusions about Iraq. That issue had been an early focus of Democrats, but none of the more than 200 intelligence officials interviewed by the panel made such a claim, and the Democrats have recently focused criticism on the question of whether the intelligence was misused. "

Ann Coulter...very funny.: Her column this week is entitled:In Desperate Move, Kerry Adopts Puppy"

Good stuff.

John Edwards...Benedict Arnold?

As we pointed out this spring..(in John Kerry Benedict Arnold?, John Kerry has made a point in every stump speech and every debate to lay part of the blame of America's economic woes on companies that outsource part or all of their operations to foreign countries. Just last night in the South Carolina debate John Kerry stated that we must seek a " prosperity where we create jobs here at home -- and where we shut down every tax loophole, every benefit, and every reward for any Benedict Arnold CEO or company that sends jobs and profits overseas.'"


As it turned out John Kerry did not put his money where his mouth was.

And neither does John Edwards.


As reported in Newsday:
"On page five of the paper is a list of Edwards' assets, including a holding worth between $1 and $5 million - that's the deliberately obscuring style of "full-disclosure" forms - in "American EuroPacific Growth Fund." Actually, once we look at the prospectus, we learn that it's really the "EuroPacific Growth Fund." And that's honest billing; on page eight, the prospectus tells readers, "Normally, the fund will invest at least 80 percent of its assets in securities of issuers located in Europe and the Pacific Basin."

That's the truth. On page 10, we see a list of the fund's holdings by country: Japan accounts for 21.5 percent of its assets, followed by the United Kingdom at 13.4 percent. And in a breakdown by industry, as opposed to country, we see "commercial banks," 9.40 percent, and pharmaceuticals, 8.67 percent. And specifically what companies are involved? The top five listed are AstraZeneca, Vodafone, KPN, Mitsui Sumitomo Insurance, and Nestlé - foreign companies all. "

Nice job Senator Edwards. It is a good speech you give though. It would be even nicer if you meant it....

New Tour Leader...

After stage five, the top of the general classification is:
1. Thomas Voeckler (BLB)
2. Stuart O'Grady (COF) at 3'13'
3. Sandy Casar (FDJ) at 4'06'
4. Magnus Backstedt (ALB) at 6'03'
5. Jakob Piil (CSC) at 6'58'
6. Lance Armstrong (USP) at 9'35'
7. George Hincapie (USP) at 9'45'"

Phil Liggett predicted that he would let the yellow jersey slip from his grasp yesterday:
"Lance has now won 60 yellow jerseys over the years -- the same as Miguel Indurain -- but he still has a way to go to catch up with Eddy Merckx and Bernard Hinault.

I think he will let the lead go if he has to this time, as the last week is so hard and he will not want to wear his team out at this early stage. Not with the final week that the tour has in store for him!"

So do the current leaders have a shot at holding onto their leads? O'Grady is a sprinter who should fade in the mountains. I have no idea who the other dudes are...

The Political Machine Claims more Victims...

GLASS, the Gays, Lesbians and Allies Senate Staff Caucus , has started to out gay staffers of the Senate. There most recent outing, as reported by roll call, is a staffer to one of the more conservative members in the Senate, whom the group calls a "homophobe".

However, Roll Call adds, "Republican Senate sources tell HOH the ... staffer is not in danger of losing his job over the controversy."

Roll Call reports that Marriage Amendment may bypass cloture vote...(re.required)

Roll Call reports that party leaders in the Senate "are gaming out strategy in anticipation of next week's battle over gay marriage -- a showdown prompted by Republicans' desire for a wedge issue they can use with undecided voters in November." Roll Call ads, "The GOP leadership is currently engaged in its whip count, and Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist...said he doesn't expect to have an accurate assessment until the 'early part of next week' when the chamber turns its attention to the issue. Frist did add that the leadership's efforts would ultimately focus on '10 people who could swing' their vote either way on the issue. The GOP leadership is expected to exert intense pressure on each of the 51 Republican Senators - even those who would ultimately oppose the amendment - to help overcome a procedural hurdle that Democrats may use to prevent a vote."

The Hill notes that Democrats "may let the GOP leadership off the hook. Democratic leaders are considering whether to let the GOP have a direct vote on the constitutional amendment. While the Democrats are still considered likelier to force a cloture vote that the GOP is expected to lose, some Democrats believe that an up-or-down vote on the issue would be more beneficial, according to three separate sources, all who requested anonymity."


I think the latter is less likely. The Democrats would prefer a failed vote on the amendment itself, if possible, bfore the convention.

The problem is, that it would force Senators in contested races, Daschle for example, and outgoing Senators, Graham, Edwards, Breaux, to go on the record on a topic which they do not want to do.

Stalling has always been the default position and that will likely continue.

Expect several failed cloture votes on this issue as November 2, nears.

Ed Meese, my frequent lunch buddy, has an excellent comment on the Patriot Act..

Seriously though, I did have lunch witht he man last week and will agian on Monday. Tomorrow, I dine with Ted Olson.

If you haven't been invited to the vast right conspiracy, I highly recommend it.

We don't get all the chicks like the Democrats do, but we do know how to throw one heck of a lunch.

Anyway, here's Ed says:


Critics argue the various provisions of the Patriot Act greatly infringe upon American liberties while failing to deal effectively with terrorism. Its very name now serves as a symbol for all domestic antiterrorist law enforcement actions. It has become convenient shorthand for any questions that have arisen since September 11 about the conflict between civil liberty and national security.
Too much of the debate, though, has focused not on what the Patriot Act truly does, but on what some people perceive it to do. Most of the proposals for reform mistake the appearance of potential problems and abuse (the myth) with the reality of no abuse at all. Factual analysis, however, shows the case for change has not been made.



Ahh but as Richard Clarke confirmed many times politics trumps the truth when you are trying to achieve or maintain power in Washington.

What the liberal establishment needs is a clearcut example of a Patriot Act abuse that specifically infringed on the rights of an individual in a manner inconsistent with the Constitution.

Unfortuantely based on the many checks included in the Act, requiring court orders for sneak and peak, Congressional oversight, etc... this eample might be hard to find.

Wednesday, July 07, 2004

Krugman just looooooves to be wrong
This is from Christmas Eve 2002:

"Time magazine's persons of the year are three whistle-blowers: Sherron Watkins of Enron, Cynthia Cooper of WorldCom and Coleen Rowley of the F.B.I.
They deserve to be celebrated. After all, thanks to Ms. Watkins and Ms. Cooper, Jeff Skilling, Ken Lay and Bernie Ebbers have been indicted, and the politicians who did their bidding have been disgraced. Thanks to Ms. Rowley, incompetent officials at the F.B.I. and C.I.A. have been removed from their posts, and we've had a searching inquiry into what went wrong on Sept. 11.
Oh, I'm sorry. None of that actually happened. The bravery of the whistle-blowers was real enough, but Time seems to be celebrating what should have been, not what was."


Weeeeellllllll lets just see:

Ex-Enron CEO Jeffrey Skilling indicted in Houston - Feb. 19, 2004

'Former Enron chief indicted': "Kenneth Lay, the former head of Enron, has reportedly been indicted for his role in the Texas energy giant's collapse" on JULY 7, 2004.

TalkLeft: Worldcom CEO Ebbers Indicted March 03, 2004
: "Bernard Ebbers, the Worldcom CEO who allegedly cooked the corporate books to conceal the companys financial woes from investors, has been indicted. The indictment adds Ebbers to what the Associated Press terms the swelling ranks of corporate chieftains facing criminal prosecution and possible jail time for financial misdeeds."

MSNBC - George Tenet resigns as CIA director June 3 2003: "CIA Director George Tenet has resigned as director of central intelligence for personal reasons,President Bush said in a surprise announcement Thursday. A government source told NBC News that the agencys director of operations, James Pavitt, would also announce his resignation Friday. "

And the National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States held its twelfth and final public hearing June 16-17, 2004.

That is quite a record of being wrong that Mr. Krugman has created for himself.

Now he is world reknowned what exactly? Economist?

The Toupee' is being held for further questioning...: "Three bodies were found at a New Mexico ranch owned by ABC newsman Sam Donaldson, and authorities said they were treating the case as a triple homicide. The bodies of a man and two women were found Tuesday on Donaldson's remote ranch north of Hondo, the Lincoln County Sheriff's Department said.

'My wife Jan and I are shocked by the apparent triple homicide that took place on our ranch in Hondo, New Mexico, sometime over the Fourth of July weekend while we were away in Santa Fe,' Donaldson said in a statement. 'We understand the investigation is continuing, and we have been asked by authorities not to comment further at this time.' "

I like how he puts his alibi right into the middle of his quote. Didn't O.J. do that also? He was innocent.

Donaldson does not mention the whereabouts of his deadly hairpiece. Leaving it to wave in the breeze after so many years of service. Sad.

We make up the questions....you decide...

I am big fan of White House Counsel Alberto Gonzales and I think that the White House is doing a great job in opening up access to the public for "Ask the White House" online interactive forum.

That said. It sure would be nice if the questions were a little more balanced so it wouldn't seem like Senator Orrin Hatch was feverishly typing all of the questions himself on his Senate computer.

Here are todays highlights:

Neil, from Pennsylvania writes:
Are present federal judges having to do more because the federal government cannot agree on who to appoint and confirm for the many judicial vacancies across the country?


Translation:"Those Senate Democrats are risking our entire judicial system! Aren''t they rotten?"

Also nice use of Pennsylvania, a swing state, really conveys the message that the White House cares about Pennsylvania's needs.

Katy, from Portland writes:
Having recently passed the bar and being active in politics, I have a question for you. If you could go back and do this all again, would you? Is public service really worth it? To me it appears if you stand up for what you believe in, the other side will do anything to demonize you.
Personally, I think it's sad. I believe your administration is ethical and honest. And I'm not a card carrying Republican. Im an Independent. I have voted for both parties.
When I've thought about running for office, I shake my head. Has it been worth it for you and your family to serve?
Thanks


Translation: "Why are you so awesome?"

Also she is an independant! From Portland even! So you know this is true: "I believe your administration is ethical and honest."! Who would make that up?

Tom, from Georgia writes:
Why are we talking about judicial nominations when there are so many other pressing topics like the economy and Iraq?


Ok this one might be a realone that slipped in. Clearly Tom in Georgia has caught on to the whole scheme. Tom will have to be taken care of, alert the DOJ...

Rick, from Latrobe writes:
I thought you all had made some deal with the democrats on judicial nominations? Wasn't this supposed to be fixed?


Translation:Hey those Senate Democrats are a bunch of lying backstabbing weasels! I hate those guys!

In a rare show of restraint Gonzales actually manages to answer this pseudo-question without pointing out that both John Kerry and John Edwards are Senate Democrats. And another question from PA. They are really campaining hard. This question however was likely drafted by Senator Rick Santorum who hasn't caught on that it is ok to go anonymous on the internet. His aol screen name is probably senatorricksantorum.

Ringo Starr, abandoned, unneeded and unfed!

Ringo Starr was found today, alone, likely abandoned by his caregiver, and in very poor health due to lack of nutrition. His wife, Barbara Bach was not in their home and has not been seen for several days.

Ringo, formerly of Beatles fame, has gotten older since his Beatles days and has started to lose his hair. He blames that transformation in part on the dissolution of his marriage and eventual abandonment.

" She never sent me a Valentine this year, "Ringo said" or a birthday greeting." Officials also noted that Ms. Bach seemed to have cleaned out the couples mansion of all liquor including wine.

Ringo's daughter Serena noted, "The first sign things were bad between them was when dad showed up at our doorstep at quarter to three in the morning. Barbara had just locked him out."

Officials are still on the look out for Miss Bach, who, despite being a former supermodel, has aged herself, and is unlikely to find another mate at this advanced age.

Other than Mr. Starr's poor condition, the house was in complete disrepair. Fuses needed mending, sweaters lay half knit by the fireplace and weeds filled the garden.

"You've got to find her and find out why she left," Ringo pleaded with the police." We have a rental cottage on the Isle of Wightif that we use in the summer. She might be there."

This is not the first tragedy to have hit the Starr household in recent years. In 2002, Ringo's three grandchildren Vera, Chuck and Dave Starr were all killed in a freak submarine/octopus accidental collision which remains unsolved to this day.

The only clue as to Ms. Bach's reasons for leaving was a form which read:
Ringo? Yes ___ No __X__

In other Starr related news, Ringo turned 64 today July 7th, 2004. In lieu of gifts, Ringo would rather be 22 again.

I cho cho chooose you....

Thoughts on the image:

Botox lasts about 3-4 months.

Kerry's new cosmetic surgery enhancement, his pearly white caps are quite nice.

These are 2 of the richest guys in the country.

Kerry has one heck of a manicure. Are those french tips?

This is a true story...:
The headlineof this Gallup Poll is this:"Bush Loses Support Among Hispanics"

I might have lead with this statistic:
5. Do you approve or disapprove of the way George W. Bush is handling his job as president?


Approve Disapprove No opinion

2004 Jun 9-30 53 45 2


53% approval rating.

That is fairly significant isn't it?

Doesn't that portend victory?

Waffling spreading throughout Democratic Party...
Governor Rendell was against Edwards before he was for him or something...

"Asked Monday to size up John Edwards as a vice presidential candidate, Rendell declared the first-term senator from North Carolina not ready. Edwards, he said, was handicapped by youthful good looks and a lack of foreign policy experience. In a word, Rendell said, he lacked 'gravitas.'
Hours after John Kerry tapped Edwards as his Democratic running mate yesterday, Rendell said this about the former trial lawyer:
'He brings a lot of enthusiasm, passion and commitment to the ticket.'
Rendell spoke to reporters yesterday by conference call while vacationing at his New Jersey Shore house."

LANCE! Ahhhhh-ahhhhhhhh Master of the Cyclists!: "Lance Armstrong claimed back his familiar Tour de France leader's yellow jersey when U.S. Postal won a 40-mile team time trial in Arras Wednesday. "

But watch out for Tyler Hamilton and Phonak...

"Swiss team Phonak, led by American Tyler Hamilton, were second more than one minute behind in 1:13:10 while Spain's Illes Baleares were third, a further eight seconds adrift.


U.S. Postal were impressive, clocking the third best ever average speed in a Tour de France team time trial at 53.71 kph (33.3 mph).


The stage was held in dreadful conditions, rain falling steadily on a windswept course.


Phonak's result was a feat in itself as they endured five punctures and dropped three riders. "

The Tour instituted the Lance rule this year to prevent Lance from gaining even more on his rivals. In the first couple of years of his ascent he was a one man wrecking crew. But recently he has put together a tidy little team which has been dominant on the team trials.

In light of that development, "New regulations in force Wednesday limited gaps between teams to 10 seconds according to their finish, the team placed last losing a maximum of three minutes. "

So there is no huge advantage to be gained on the team trial as there was in the past.

Still it is nice to be in first. And another American in second.

Suck on that frenchie!

Bush makes his play for Louisiana...: "The shrimp catchers of Lafitte and surrounding bayous should be happy: After years of complaining about unfair competition, the U.S. government has proposed tariffs on shrimp imports from China and Vietnam.
But many believe the effort is a little too late.
'The best fisherman on the bayou can't make it,' said Jules Nunez, a spry and garrulous 71-year-old dock owner. 'If you go from Texas to the Carolinas, it's the same thing.' "

Maybe they see ill potents in the election year.

Louisiana is a swing state and so this is purely political as were the steel tariffs.

Who is The Inner Circle of Advocates?

Well "Senator John R. Edwards, is an Emeritus member.
His address there is listed as:
P. O. Box 31665
Raleigh, NC 27622
(919) 881-2111
Fax: (919) 781-8630

Tuesday, July 06, 2004

EdwardsWatch.org | The Personal Injury "Common Man" Candidate

His cat is named Mary Jo....

From reliable sources...
"You rarely see Sen. Ted Kennedy wandering around the Capitol -- or Washington or Hyannis Port -- without his faithful dog Splash close by. And now Kennedy wants to share the perspective of his 7-year-old Portuguese water dog with children everywhere. The Boston Herald reports that Kennedy is writing a kids' book about the Senate based on Splash's view of things. There's no signed contract, but Kennedy is speaking to a publisher, his spokesman told us yesterday. No title yet, but we're sure to hear some mean jokes if it's called 'Splash.' "

News the environmentalists do not want you to read...: "A new analysis shows that the Sun is more active now than it has been at anytime in the previous 1,000 years"

John Edwards on John Kerry:

From an editorial on his site:


"Sen. John Kerry is the clear favorite and at this point will be hard to beat. But Edwards more than rivals him in many ways and on many issues. We are also very troubled by how out of touch Kerry was with an economic development project — the proposed Excelsior Energy power plant that holds the potential of 1,000 construction jobs and 500 permanent jobs — on the Range. An energy bill currently being debated in Congress contains, because of the hard work of Sen. Norm Coleman, R-Minn., $800 million in federal loan guarantees for the project that could serve as a vital catalyst for private investment in the $1.2 billion clean-energy coal gasification plant. Kerry was one of five senators who signed a letter last year calling the provision of loan guarantees for the Range project “pork.” That’s bull. To sign such a letter at the same time he is campaigning on investing in new jobs in the country makes him, on that issue, a “walking contradiction” — which is a label he has given to President George W. Bush.

.....

Trade: Kerry has been a strong supporter of the North American Free Trade Agreement, which has helped to terribly constrict the nation’s middle class, from the start. He now is trying to position himself as someone who will battle for fair trade and against the loss of American jobs. But he has been part of the problem, not the solution. It’s easy on this issue for Edwards to say he would have voted against NAFTA if he had been in the Senate back in 1993. He wasn’t. So who really knows?

....

Too often, Kerry falls back into the murky Washington bureaucracy. That can come with the territory when you have been there for decades. That experience can certainly be a plus. But we believe there is a strong need at this time for someone to come not as beholden to that bureaucratic grip.
..."

And here, calling on Senator Kerry to help reform campaign financing...:

"Senator John Edwards (D-NC) released the following statement today urging Senator John Kerry and the other presidential candidates to join him in rejecting campaign contributions from federally registered lobbyists:
"I welcome Senator Kerry's proposal. While it is a small and important first step, I believe we must go much further, and stop the corrosive influence of lobbyists walking around Washington with legislation in one hand and campaign cash in the other. That's why I have proposed banning contributions from Washington lobbyists to candidates running for federal office. Unlike Governor Dean, Congressman Gephardt, Senators Kerry and Lieberman, and President Bush, I have never taken a dime from Washington lobbyists and I never will. I challenge all the other candidates in the race to join me in an effort to truly stop the pervasive influence of Washington lobbyists by refusing to accept their contributions."


I wonder if he still believes that?

Happy Birthday Mr. President...: "The Commander-in-Chief adds another candle to his cake Tuesday. President George W. Bush is celebrating his 58th birthday. The nation's 43rd president and former governor of Texas was born July 6, 1946, in New Haven, Connecticut. No word on what he will do to mark the occasion. "

Remebering John Edwards....

And this...

And this...



The Veepstakes...Bought and paid for?: "Wealthy and well-connected lawyers who fueled John Edwards' upstart White House bid have given at least $7 million to John Kerry since he secured the Democratic nomination, an important show of support as Edwards moves into position as a possible running mate.
Of the $74 million Kerry raised in March and April, close to $1 in every $10 came from lawyers, Kerry's most recent campaign finance reports show"

That is a lot of money to say no to....

Huddled masses, breathing free-er.: "Mr. Edow (pronounced EE-doh) and Ms. Idle (pronounced EE-dalay) are part of a continuing resettlement of 13,000 Bantu people from Somalia, descendants of people kidnapped from southern Africa by Arab slave traders two centuries ago. As part of one of the most ambitious relocations of political refugees by the United States in recent history, the Bantu couple arrived in Tucson in May 2003 from a Kenyan camp. They were uneducated, unemployed and unfamiliar with basic facts of American life like electrical appliances and indoor plumbing."

This post is patented.: "A coalition of lawyers, researchers and software experts formed by the Electronic Frontier Foundation will try to overturn 10 Internet and software-related patents that the group says are so sweeping they threaten innovation.
While most of the patents are held by little-known companies, two industry leaders have also been named: Clear Channel, which has patented a way to distribute recordings of concerts within minutes after they end, and Nintendo, whose patents include some concerning platform software for hand-held games. The list also includes one individual."

This is the most ridiculous patent the are going after, "held by Acacia Research of Newport Beach, Calif.; as the company describes it, the patent covers systems for 'the transmission and receipt of digital content via the Internet, cable, satellite and other means.' "

Hopefully the Office will consider this request thouroughly. But more importantly, this will lead to a better review process before the patents themselves are granted.

Kerry, for abortion before he was against it...

"Mr. Kerry also dealt with the issue so often cited by Republicans as evidence that he is outside the mainstream on abortion. Mr. Kerry has a 100 percent voting record with Naral Pro-Choice America, and has often spoken about his commitment to abortion rights and the appointment of judges who will uphold them.

But in an interview with The Telegraph Herald in Dubuque, published Sunday, Mr. Kerry emphasized his personal opposition to abortion. He also tried to counter the criticism from within his church hierarchy that an elected official could not advocate the right to abortion and be a good Catholic. Mr. Kerry said he was abiding by both his conscience and the line between church and state in America.
'I oppose abortion, personally,' he told the newspaper. 'I don't like abortion. I believe life does begin at conception. But I can't take my Catholic belief, my article of faith, and legislate it on a Protestant or a Jew or an atheist ...who doesn't share it. We have separation of church and state in the United States of America.'
The Bush campaign reacted strongly to Mr. Kerry's statement of personal opposition to abortion. 'John Kerry's efforts to mislead voters in the heartland are offensive,' said Kevin Madden, a Bush campaign spokesman. 'His rhetoric is at odds with a long record of opposing common-sense measures like the ban on partial-birth abortion.'"

John Kerry on John Edwards...: "In the Senate four years, and that is the full extent of public life - no international experience, no military experience - you can imagine what the advertising is going to be next year,' Mr. Kerry said of Mr. Edwards just before the Iowa caucuses, adding: 'When I came back from Vietnam in 1969, I don't know if John Edwards was out of diapers then. Well, I'm sure he was out of diapers.' "

John Kerry on John Edwards...: "In the Senate four years, and that is the full extent of public life - no international experience, no military experience - you can imagine what the advertising is going to be next year,' Mr. Kerry said of Mr. Edwards just before the Iowa caucuses, adding: 'When I came back from Vietnam in 1969, I don't know if John Edwards was out of diapers then. Well, I'm sure he was out of diapers.' "

CIA held back key info.: "The Central Intelligence Agency was told by relatives of Iraqi scientists before the war that Baghdad's programs to develop unconventional weapons had been abandoned, but the C.I.A. failed to give that information to President Bush, even as he publicly warned of the threat posed by Saddam Hussein's illicit weapons, according to government officials.
The existence of a secret prewar C.I.A. operation to debrief relatives of Iraqi scientists " and the agency's failure to give their statements to the president and other policymakers " has been uncovered by the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence. The panel has been investigating the government's handling of prewar intelligence on Iraq's unconventional weapons and plans to release a wide-ranging report this week on the first phase of its inquiry. The report is expected to contain a scathing indictment of the C.I.A. and its leaders for failing to recognize that the evidence they had collected did not justify their assessment that Mr. Hussein had illicit weapons."

It makes you wonder what else the CIA did not tell past Presidents. In their defense it did seem like a pretty good case in which to roll the intelligence dic. heck everyone in the world assumed that there were large stockpiles of weapons.

1.. Why would he lie on the UN disclosure?
2. Why would he be so resistant to the inspectors and employ subterfuge and intimidation tactics to hamper their efforts?
3. Why would he risk war with the United States?
4. Scott Ritter said that there no WMD's and that guy is an idiot and a jerk.

I cannot say that I would made a different decision. Meanwhile this has yet to rub off on the White House.

"While the Senate panel has concluded that C.I.A. analysts and other intelligence officials overstated the case that Iraq had illicit weapons, the committee has not found any evidence that the analysts changed their reports as a result of political pressure from the White House, according to officials familiar with the report. "

Tenet's "slam dunk" statement is the most telling I think, and easiest to convey to the public. When posed with the WMD question Tenet told the President it was a slam dunk.

Hamdi in action: "Lawyers have filed suit demanding the U.S. government justify its detention of nine foreign terror suspects at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.
The challenges, filed last week in U.S. District Court in Washington, are the first since the Supreme Court's ruling last week that the prisoners may use American courts to contest their detentions. "

Federal Programs will likely handle these cases, which were filed in an attempt by the litigants to choose their forum in the United States prior to having the detainees moved into Texas or Virginia.

Hamdi in action: "Lawyers have filed suit demanding the U.S. government justify its detention of nine foreign terror suspects at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.
The challenges, filed last week in U.S. District Court in Washington, are the first since the Supreme Court's ruling last week that the prisoners may use American courts to contest their detentions. "

Federal Programs will likely handle these cases, which were filed in an attempt by the litigants to choose their forum in the United States prior to having the detainees moved into Texas or Virginia.

Dewey beats Edwards!

Sunday, July 04, 2004

Is there nothing you can count on?

So the speed of light is not a constant.

Great.

I demand all of my college theoretical mechanics finals regraded in light of this change.

Proud to be an American...Reason 3

Becuase this is ours:

"When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.--That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, --"

Proud to be an American....Reason 4789123

Because we have Victor David Hanson:

"We underestimated homegrown opposition to the war. Thus we saw little reason to confront it intellectually or morally. Assuming few here could identify with fascism, gender apartheid, terrorism, and intolerance, we forgot that forty years of postcolonial studies, multiculturalism, cultural relativism, and aristocratic pacifism in our schools and public discourse had imbued a real mistrust of the United States that was far stronger than any ideological revulsion to Islamic fascism. Shrill Deanism morphed into conspiratorial Moorism and finally ended up as the canonical outrage of the Democratic Party."

HAPPY 4TH OF JULY!

Friday, July 02, 2004

The U.N. Mission Revealed!!!

The United Nations has welcomed Iraq back to the adult's table with the single most appropriate response from this decrepit and morally bankrupt institution.....a bill:

"Although it formally regained political power this week, Iraq cannot yet resume voting at the United Nations because it has fallen far behind in its U.N. dues payments, the General Assembly said Thursday.

Baghdad must pay at least $14.6 million to regain its vote, the 191-nation U.N. assembly said in a report to Secretary General Kofi Annan. Under U.N. rules, member states lose their vote if their dues go unpaid for two or more years."

Nevermind the billions of dollars that was supposed to go to the people of Iraq but instead ended up as bribes to corrupt individuals all over the world. Forget about the years of aid that were supposed to come but never did. No, all the U.N. cares about is $14.6 million. It is sickening.

When Bush got the Note that Iraq had rejoined the league of nations he commented "Let freedom reign."

When Kofi Annan go the note his comment "Pay up, oh and what happened to all our bribe money anyway?"

Actor Marlon Brando, 80, Dies

To quote Congressman Denis Kucinich "WHERE ARE THE WEAPONS OF MASS DESTRUCTION!" (repeat as necessary) : "Artillery shells found by Polish troops in Iraq definitely contained the deadly nerve agent cyclosarin, Poland's military has said.
'The results of ... analysis confirmed that chemical agent GB-GF, cyclosarin, was found in the shells,' the Polish-led unit of the multinational force in Iraq said in a statement on Friday.
'Beyond doubt these are shells from the 1980-1988 period, of the type used against Kurds and during the Iraq-Iran war.'
Poland said on Thursday its soldiers found 17 Grad rockets and two mortar shells filled with chemicals in late June and that U.S. experts had carried out tests on the weapons.
U.S. officials confirmed late on Thursday that such shells were being tested but said further tests were continuing because initial findings could be misleading. U.S. officials were not immediately available to comment on the Polish statement.
'Some of those warheads were old but it could not be ruled out some could still be used,' Defence Minister Jerzy Szmajdzinski told Poland's Zet radio on Friday.
The statement from the Polish headquarters at Babylon said the shells had been hidden and that chemicals had leaked from one but the threat had been dealt with. Local people said unidentified individuals had offered the shells for sale.
'If these shells had been used, in a mortar attack on Camp Babylon for example, the results would have been unthinkable,' the Polish commander in Iraq, General Mieczyslaw Bieniek, told TVN24 television.
Iraq said it produced cyclosarin munitions in the 1980s to fight Iran but was committed to destroying stocks and ceasing production by U.N. resolutions following the 1991 Gulf War.
U.S. President George W. Bush accused then Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein of failing to give up chemical"

U.S. Job Growth Slows in June: "The Labor Department (news - web sites) said only 112,000 jobs were created last month, far fewer than the 250,000 that Wall Street analysts had anticipated. April and May new-job totals were revised down, to 324,000 and 235,000 respectively, from 346,000 and 248.000. "

Steal this Movie.

Micheal Moore wants you to download 'Fahrenheit 9/11' for free as reported to CNET News.com.


"The controversial film--like virtually every new release--has been circulating online for days. Early in the week, anti-Moore Web site MooreWatch.com posted a link to a pirated version of the film available elsewhere on a file-sharing network, noting that the director himself has publicly backed downloading the movie online.
The result has been a torrent of criticism from Moore supporters and his distribution company, Lions Gate Entertainment. The site was even the target of a denial-of-service attack a few days ago. But MooreWatch co-founder Jim Kenefick, a Web programmer in Hamden, Conn., is taking it in stride.

'Moore has said on many cases that he doesn't care if people download his movies or steal his book or sneak into his movies,' Kenefick said. 'If I can use his own words against him to be a bee in his bonnet, then I will.' "


I think that stealing other people's intellectual property is wrong. But it appears as if Micheal Moore has given people permission to do so in this case. The article is not entirely accurate in that the movie is not available for download through MOOREWATCH.com,

But that is an excellent place to visit if you wish to follow Mr. Moore's advice and steal his movie. (Which once again I wholeheartedly disagree with.)

Thursday, July 01, 2004

Democracy on the March...: "Angered by Beijing's decision ruling out full democracy in Hong Kong, hundreds of thousands of people marched Thursday to demand the right to choose their leader.
'We don't want to be subservient to the central government,' said Ben Kwok, a 40-year-old factory owner, as the crowd clogged streets and turned much of downtown Hong Kong into a sprawling but peaceful protest zone.
Organizers claimed 530,000 people had marched - a turnout that would put the rally on par with one that jolted the Chinese and Hong Kong governments exactly a year earlier. Police offered a lower estimate, saying about 200,000 people were there by midway through the five-hour demonstration"

So where is the South?

An interesting discussion in the blogosphere, at the Maledictorian, above and over at Southern Appeal.

The definitive look at the subject is available here in an article entitled "The South: Where is it? What is it?" where a huge variety of different cultural, lingual, sexual, and agricultural references are mapped in order to determine Southerness.

The most accurate by far is the map indicating the
use of word "Dixie" in businesses in the phone book.

This is the true map of the South.

It is so true that at the very heart of the map in central Georgia, there is a marked decrease in the number of "Dixies" used in the phone book. Why is that so?

Because when you are that far into the South, the "Dixie" is just implied.

Letting freedom reign...

Just some notes on the authorship of the phrase...

Over at the: " Guardian they note"The mutation, "Let Freedom Reign", has an interesting pedigree of its own. George Bush's father used the phrase at a speech in the Netherlands in 1989, attributing it to Winston Churchill (wrongly, according to the Churchill Centre in Washington). But five years later, Nelson Mandela used the same words to stirring effect in his inaugural address as president of a new South Africa. "

Mandela's peech is reprinted at Inspiring speeches:

Here are some excerpts:


"The time for the healing of the wounds has come. The moment to bridge the chasms that divide us has come. The time to build is upon us. We have, at last, achieved our political emancipation. We pledge our-selves to liberate all our people from the continuing bondage of poverty, deprivation, suffering gender and other discrimination.
We succeeded to take our last steps to freedom in conditions of relative peace. We commit ourselves to the construction of a complete, just and lasting peace.
We have triumphed in the effort to implant hope in the breasts of the millions of our people. We enter into a covenant that we shall build the society in which all South Africans, both black and white, will be able to walk tall, without any fear in their hearts, assured of their inalienable right to human dignity - a rainbow nation at peace with itself and the world.
...
Let freedom reign. The sun never set on so glorious a human achievement."

And here is a more recent use found in a poem by Northover available at Africa Online:

"AFRICAN RAIN

Oh Africa, let freedom reign
Oh Africa, let freedom reign.
Rain down a storm on the white man's home.
Let him see that God is watching over all.
Let the thunder clap its hands
Together we will stand
Hand in hand
One and all
Africa


And finally here is a portion of an essay on the Matin Luther king foundation website entitled: WHY WE CELEBRATE MLK: "The parade and its participants are emerging as a veritable rainbow of humanity. Christians, Jews, Bahai's, Muslims, and other faiths figuratively, (and sometimes literally,) join forces to make this parade an 'event.' Together, they make joyful noises that resonate from the 'heightening Alleghenies' to Tieneman Square with the all too familiar cry: 'Let Freedom Reign!'"

And here is Maureen Dowd's uninformed take on the expression:
"Let freedom reign.
Couldn't Karl Rove and his minions at least get that "ad-lib" right about freedom ringing?" ... The White House pretended that the sovereignty was real. The administration that is loath to share information and presidential papers — even to help the 9/11 investigation find ways to make the country more secure — quickly turned over a photo of Mr. Bush's handwritten "Let freedom reign!" comment on Condi Rice's note to him announcing the transfer.

But it rings — or reigns — hollow in a week when Sandra Day O'Connor and the Supremes — except the Bush family fixer Clarence Thomas — slapped the commander in chief for torturing without a license. "A state of war is not a blank check for the president," the court ruled."

Right to Privacy vs. Right to Open Government...: "A state court judge in Florida ordered Thursday that the board of elections immediately release a list of nearly 50,000 suspected felons to CNN and other news organizations that last month sued the state for access to copies of the list."

If I was a convicted felon living in Florida, I would greatly appreciate it if the State did not go around broadcasting that fact. I would make PTA meetings, church groups, boy scout meetings and the like very uncomfortable affairs if all of a sudden everyone there knew My felonious background even if I was completely redeemed.

I wonder where the ACLU stands on this issue.

Oh I can guess, mind you, but they have already filed a case in the state concerning Rush Limbaugh's medical records. And they have shown an interest in privacy rights before.
But something tells me that since someone named Bush signed this legisaltion, they probably are staying away from this case.
I would also like to add this little nugget.

CNN.com has this statement under a picture of the Supreme Court on this article with a caption that states: "The U.S. Supreme Court closed the door to recounts in Florida in the 2000 presidential election."

That is not true. There were recounts all over the state that upheld the election results prior to the Supreme Court decision. All of those recounts still had Bush as the winner. The Supreme Court basically prevented further recounts done by hand in selected counties unless some uniformity could be established.
But to say that the Supreme Court prevented recounts is untrue.

Caption This!



3. "I'm out of order! You're out of order! The whole system's out of order!"

2. "I once castrated a prisoner who was this big."

1. "Oh yeah well the jerk store called and they are running out of you."
(stolen without persmission from sloppygecko)

Holy Cow! Number 3 on Blogdex!!!

The Instalanche phenomenon played out for anyone to see.

Heresy I declare!: "A Catholic lawyer has filed heresy charges against Sen. John Kerry with the Archdiocese of Boston, accusing the Democratic presidential candidate of bringing 'most serious scandal to the American public' by receiving Holy Communion as a pro-choice Catholic.
The 18-page document was sent to the archdiocese June 14, but released to the public only yesterday by Marc Balestrieri, a Los Angeles-based canon lawyer and an assistant judge with the Archdiocese of Los Angeles' tribunal, an ecclesiastical court. "

Incase you were wondering as to the definiton of heresy, the online Catholic Encyclopedia defines the term. And notes that St. Thomas (II-II:11:1) defines heresy: "a species of infidelity in men who, having professed the faith of Christ, corrupt its dogmas" The site also notes that: "Both matter and form of heresy admit of degrees which find expression in the following technical formula of theology and canon law. Pertinacious adhesion to a doctrine contradictory to a point of faith clearly defined by the Church is heresy pure and simple, heresy in the first degree." And notes that "The sentence on the obstinate heretic is invariably excommunication. He is separated from the company of the faithful, delivered up "to Satan for the destruction of the flesh, that the spirit may be saved in the day of our Lord Jesus Christ" (I Cor., v, 5" For edification purposes here are some other famous heretics: Joan of Arc. Galileo. Francis Bacon. Martin Luther. Madonna Ciccone (assumed).

I tread not onto the laws and traditions of the Catholic church but I am mindful of this statement from Alexander Hamilton:" In politics, as in religion, it is equally absurd to aim at making proselytes by fire and sword. Heresies in either can rarely be cured by persecution."

Wow this is ugly....

Jack Wheeler has an amazingly ugly op-ed in today's Washington Post comparing the Clinton and the Reagan legacy. It starts out sweet enough, using a Harry Potter analogy of all things, but then it quickly descends into political muckracking of the most ugly nature.

I won't reprint any of the allegations here, for fear of a libel suit, but they are incredibly distasteful

Because Wheeler, adn therefore the Times, has chosen to focus its attacks on Hillary now, one can only assume that there may be some truth to the Hillary as Veep rumors. Wither that or Wheeler is planting a little nugget for 2008.