Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Christmas Idea of the Week

For a mere fifteen bucks, you could be totin' your bucks in a gen-u-ine duct tape wallet.

Your moment of zen: "Duct tape is like the force: It has a dark side and a light side and it holds the universe together."
- Carl Zwanzig

Tuesday, November 29, 2005

I Can't Believe I'm Writing This

In an effort to protect her privacy, this post has been moved to a new blog dedicated to my wife's struggle to regain her health. Anyone desiring a link to this private blog should send me a note.

Sunday, November 27, 2005

Fifteen Minutes is Up

This is Cindy Sheehan's recent book signing. Notably, photographers outnumber sycophants. Nighty night, Cindy.

Well, That Didn't Take Long

Here it is Sunday, November 28th, and by all accounts, Christmas shopping is booming:
Shoppers did not hold back this holiday weekend, spending a whopping $27.8 billion and setting the tone for what retailers hope will be a very merry Christmas, according to the National Retail Federation.
Typically, the New York Times has already identified the dark cloud behind the silver lining. Case in point:
As the nation's retail executives began poring over, and in some cases despairing over, sales receipts from the holiday weekend, one pattern became clearer: consumers mobbed discount chains, with their $398 laptops and 5 a.m. openings, but largely shopped right past other specialty retailers at the mall.
Is there any story The Times can't spin into "despair?"

Unintended Consequences

My young nephew/second cousin once removed or whatever is celebrating his first birthday today, and in his innocence has no idea of the corrupting power of money. Sure, we all know about the politicians, but it seems inescapable.
A woman who won a $65.4 million Powerball jackpot with her husband five years ago was found dead at her home overlooking the Ohio River, where she had apparently been for days before anyone found her, police said.
Dead and alone with sixty five million. How is her husband taking the tragedy? As well as can be expected, given his condition:
Metcalf died in 2003 at age 45 while living in a replica of George Washington's Mount Vernon estate built in Corbin, Kentucky. His death followed multiple run-ins with the law, including a child-support dispute from a previous marriage and a drunken-driving charge filed before he hit the jackpot.
In my mind, money earned is always better spent than money acquired.

Saturday, November 26, 2005

Nephew's Birthday Party

Well, today is the nephew's Big 1st Birthday Party which is really mainly for the adults since the children are too young to remember anything.

It should be a day full on tumbling toddlers, screaming pre-schoolers on sugar highs, and, of course, lots and lots of ELMOS!

The Media are Reprehensible

This kind of stuff makes my blood boil:
In his first tour, he noticed that members of the press were reluctant to photograph Iraqis laughing, giving the thumbs up sign, or cheering. Yet Bowers saw plenty that would have made fine snapshots. In Baghdad, Al Kut and Al-Nasiriyah, Bowers reported no signs of anti-American feeling at all among Iraqis.
Nice. Our own press is against us. But it gets worse:
At the same site, the Marines had repaired an old Ferris wheel. The motor was dead, but when two Marines pushed and pulled by hand they could get the thing turning to give rides to the children of the Iraqi employees. They did so for hours on end. A photographer from a large American media company watched impassively. "Why don't you take a picture of this?" demanded one Marine. The photographer snorted, "That's not my job."
The American media turn my stomach.

Gun Show Weekend

This weekend sees another gun show at the Hampton Coliseum. Every time I go, my wife says, "buy anything you want." And every time I return home with a couple collectible coins or a camo hat.

This weekend, however, I have my eye on one of these.

Friday, November 25, 2005

Sleep Well, Cousin Don

Thanksgiving Day scofflaws are running rampant, but your AG is on the case:
Massachusetts' attorney general is launching an investigation into several supermarkets that stayed open opened on Thanksgiving in defiance of the state's Puritan-era Blue Laws. [...]

Reilly's office had earlier warned the Whole Foods supermarket chain not to open on Thanksgiving after a competitor complained.
Boortz summed the whole thing up very well:
If Whole Foods opens this Thursday, criminal charges will be filed. Massachusetts, the birthplace of the American Revolution, and now a state where people can be charged with crimes for selling perfectly legal products on days that their competitors don't want them to. Amazing.

Queen Obliterates Pawn

In case you were looking for a good reason to take up chess, check out the World Chess Beauty Contest. Pictured here is Grand Master (I should say so!) Alexandra Kosteniak. Check Mate!

Thursday, November 24, 2005

Here we go again

Well, I certainly thought the Great TV Saga was over. Until this morning, that is, when I opened the BestBuy circular and discovered the same setl on sale for about $400 less than I paid. So tomorrow I venture out on Black Friday to find out if there's anything behind BestBuy's 30 day price protection guarantee.

Update: Well, BestBuy and I ended up with a 50-50 split. They applied the $200 open box discount from my original purchase to their new $250 "instant savings," so I only got a $50 dollar cash credit. On the plus side, the $100 store credit rebate from my original purchase was magically transformed to a $250 credit, so I came out two hundred bucks on the plus side for my efforts.

Monday, November 21, 2005

Via Taranto comes this story about an alleged incidence of "hate speech:"
A question mark imposed over a photo of a gay-pride flag prompted Stetson University officials to halt distribution of a student-run magazine. [...]

Superimposed on the flag is an almost transparent question mark, something Wasser, 21, feared could be interpreted as hostile to homosexuals. He complained to university officials, who agreed and asked magazine staffers not to distribute it on campus.

"I was afraid that back cover could be seen as an attack on myself or on the people that flag represents, or the movement, which makes it a hate speech," Wasser said Friday.
Now, wait a minute here. A question mark is hostile to homosexuals" and constitutes "hate speech?" A question mark constitutes an "attack?"

Let's have a brief reality check. Isn't "questioning" the "Q" in the self-described "LBGTQ" community? It sure is at Cousin Don's alma mater. I guess "questioning" is only permitted on campus if your questions are politically correct.

That's God - He Just Thinks He's Bono

A joke I enjoy telling on occasion involves a music critic who dies and finds himself in the afterlife. He goes over to see the heavenly band tuning up, and correctly identifies Keith Moon, Janis Joplin, Jimi Hendrix and Roy Orbison among others. Confused, the critic asks St. Peter about the old man in wraparound sunglasses at lead vocal. St Peter responds, "Oh, that's Bono."

The critic replies, "But Bono's not dead." And St. Peter says, under his breathe, "Sshhh. That's God. He just thinks he's Bono."

Imagine my amusement at this news report:
The Irish rocker also predicted that his music will still be around in 100 years, explaining that his songs occupy "an emotional terrain that didn't exist before our group did."
That's right, Bono. You single handedly created a brand new "emotional terrain" for all of humanity. That and 75 cents will get you a cup of coffee. Get over yourself.

Template Upgrades

In order to increase readability, I have instituted some minor changes to the local "look and feel:"

  • The font has been changed to sans-serif Arial.
  • A stylized quote mark has been added to blockquote text. If anyone prefers blockquotes set off in a bordered grey box to the quote, I have code for that format saved; so vote in the comments section.
  • Sunday, November 20, 2005

    I really am a curmudgeon

    We just sat and watched tonight's episode of Extreme Makeover Home Edition. Here's the premise: a family in dire need, unable to make their home work to fulfill said need, has ABC and TV stud Ty Pennington redo it for them. A nice, charitable, concept. And, for the puposes of televison, ABC naturally goes way over the top. The end is always a tear-jerker, as the family gets way more than they could have imagined.

    Tonight featured a family with a little handicapped 5-year-old boy. The child was a delight, but he was unable to negotiate around the 100-year-old farm house in which they lived. For me, this is fine. These people need help, and ABC put together a crew of local contractors to build them a brand new home in seven days! Quite a feat.

    But here is where I called "bullcrap!" Before building the new, handicapped-friendly home, they tore down the existing, perfectly good home. My contention is that if they can pull together 1000 people to build a new home, they could have put the cost of demolition toward the purchase of a new site. Then, they could have given the old home to another family that needed it.

    I say, build the family a new home, but save the old one for somebody else.

    Saturday, November 19, 2005

    Justice in The Commonwealth of Massachusetts

    Well once again Massachusetts has proven how sophisticated and international we are. Not only do we let American royalty drive off of bridges and fail to save their passenger from certain death, we have grown so cosmopolitan that we now let Saudi princes get a slap on the wrist for similar actions as reported in Friday's Boston Herald.

    The prince received one year jail time in a minimum security prison located in a lovely White Colonial on the Vineyard. The front porch has gingerbread trim and just wait until you see the fence. You might ask, "Chain link and razor wire?"

    Not for our royal allies, our jails have white picket fences.

    Here are some quotes from a former inmate excerpted from the article linked above:
    I got better treatment in there than I do at some hotels. I'm telling you, it was picturesque, said Thistle, who served an 18-month sentence on drug charges.

    It was better than a B&B, Thistle said. My friends asked me why I wanted to leave.
    Meanwhile the DA has the gaul to defend the terms of the plea bargin, based mainly on the fact that the man the prince sent flying 150 ft in the air to his death with the hood of the royal BMW was drunk and high while walking.

    Now last time I checked walking under the influence was only a crime in New Orleans.

    So as far as I can tell the DA sense of justice is "Two wrongs make a right, especially if you're royal and rich."

    Why I Read Ace of Spades

    For weeks now, we've heard Democrat posturing about Bush "lies" and calls to pull out of Iraq. Now, from Democrat "hawk" John Murtha comes this:
    Murtha, a 73-year-old Marine veteran decorated for combat service in Vietnam, issued his call for a troop withdrawal at a news conference on Thursday.
    So tonight, 24 hours later, the Republicans said, OK, buddy, let's vote on that pullout. Put up or shut up. The result? The House voted 403-3 to reject a nonbinding resolution calling for an immediate troop withdrawal.

    403-3. Against. And what do the Dems say in defence of their vote? They don't defend their vote. They condemn that they were asked to cast it at all:
    Democrats said it was a political stunt and quickly decided to vote against it in an attempt to drain it of significance.

    "A disgrace," declared House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif. "The rankest of politics and the absence of any sense of shame," added Rep. Steny Hoyer of Maryland, the No. 2 House Democrat.
    This is too much. The Dems line up a littany of criminal accusations, but when asked to back them up on the record, only three will do so. And then they accuse the Republicans of practicing the "rankist politics." Mr. Pot, meet Mr. Kettle.

    And the Ace of Spades take? All too sad if it weren't true:
    The sad truth is that they've painted themselves into the corner where they cannot allow the United States to win this war. The political damage to them would be too great. It's not so much they actively want the US to be defeated, humiliated, and further threatened; it's just at this point they cannot afford any other outcome.

    Thursday, November 17, 2005

    Technology Marches On

    Our local supermarket, Farm Fresh, has offered online shopping for a couple years now. You access the website, select your items and your store, and pick up your order at your designated time. Pretty cool.

    Now, they've kicked the technology up a notch, with biometric payments. Scan your debit card, scan your fingerprint, and your account is ready. Now, with a reader at every checkout, just swipe your finger to pay for your food and hit the road! How cool is that?

    Wednesday, November 16, 2005

    Boy, those Netherlanders are quite a lot. Via Boortzcomes this article describing an attempt by a Dutch TV station to break the world domino-toppling record:
    ...employees of TV company Endemol NV had worked for weeks setting up more than 4 million dominoes in an attempt to break the official Guinness World Record for falling dominoes.
    Unfortunately, a sparrow flew into the hall and managed to knock over 23,000 of the dominoes. So they shot and killed it. And the reaction?
    The Dutch animal protection agency demanded prosecution Tuesday for the shooting of a sparrow that knocked over 23,000 dominoes during an attempt to set a world record.
    Prosecution? How, pray tell, does one deal with a bird in an exhibition hall? Point him to the door? Set out a trail of bread crumbs? Birds are, after all, pretty hard to catch, what with that flight thing they do and all. Particularly with 4 million dominoes covering the floor. But that doesn't matter to the activists.
    "I think they were awfully fast to pull out a rifle. If a person started knocking over a few dominoes they wouldn't shoot him would they?"

    Hans Peeters, director of the Netherlands Bird Protection agency, said the killing was uncalled for.

    "They could have captured it or sedated it or something," he said.
    Perhaps ironically, Hans has hit on something that would have made better TV than seeing the domino drop. Personally, I would pay good money to see animal rights activists trying to sedate a wild sparrow indoors while simultaneously avoiding 4 million dominoes.

    Monday, November 14, 2005

    Sunday, November 13, 2005

    Gas Prices - Not so Bad

    We ventured west to Surprising Suffolk today to do a little clothes shopping, and seeing the price of gas immediately filled up the Liberty. $1.939, cheaper than pre-Katrina prices, and we can live with that. Here in Norfolk, it's running about $2.10 for regular.

    Cornell beats Harvard on Veteran's Day

    Cornell Men's Hockey secured its lead over rival Harvard in a last minute victory over the Crimson on the Harvard home ice, more about it here.

    In other news Harvard continues not to have an ROTC program of its own, unless you consider allowing its students to participate in MIT's program as participation.

    Cornell despite its being elected in a town that had a Socialist party mayor for many years, tremendously liberal faculty, and more political correctness than a Greenpeace rally still has a thriving ROTC program.

    I watched many good friends get through Cornell on ROTC scholarships.

    A few have served in both this Iraq war and the last one. My thoughts are with them and their families this weekend.

    Oh yeah! I almost forgot!

    "Screw BU, HARVARD TOO!"

    Friday, November 11, 2005

    In Heavy Rotation

    Unlike Cousing Don, I rarely play entire albums anymore. So here are 5 songs I have been listening to quite a bit recently on the iPod. Each link has a soundbite somewhere on the page:

    1. NRBQ - Riding in My Car. Is there a more clever, listenable, and engaging band than NRBQ circa 1978? Not that I've heard. I still think about them when I'm riding in my car.

    2. Widespread Panic - Coconut. I don't normally go for these free-form Grateful Dead style jam session songs, but "Coconut" is too much fun to ignore.
    I like coconuts
    You can break them open
    They smell like ladies lying in the sun.


    3. Nanci Griffith - Goodnight to a Mother's Dream. A beautiful, spare, folk ballad with heart breaking lyrics:

    Mother, to tell you the truth,
    I would trade your dream away,
    Just to hear some loved one say,
    I love you, too.


    4. Lucinda Williams - Hot Blood. Again, I don't have much blues in my little tune collection, but this song has a terrific blues riff. And what a voice.

    5. Alison Krauss and Union Station - Restless. Grammy award winning bluegrass. Follow the link for the NPR Morning Edition piece on the band.

    Albums I can't get out of my CD player

    1. Jackson Browne - Solo Acoustic Vol. 1 - he takes a cheap shot at Bush that follows "Lives in the Balance," but who gives a damn. This guy one guitar or piano is unreal. Never knew he wrote "Take it Easy" with Glenn Frey

    2. the Killers- Hot Fuss - this album rocks. Lots of critics think they're a cheap rip-off of Franz Ferdinand but I ( and it seems many others who've bought this disc) think they're a helluva a lot more fun (and less pretentious IMHO)

    3. George Strait - 50 number ones - fifty number ones count 'embut know when to fold 'em (I know that's Kenny Rogers) 'nuff said

    4. Cream - Royal Albert Hall London May 2-3-5-6 2005 - not a consistent disc IMHO but the version of "Stormy Monday". Maybe Clapton is God...

    5. Stone Roses - The Stone Roses - lost this album many years ago and found it recently in a used CD store in my town. Forgot how good this disc is. Don't get sucked into buying this piece of crap which sits in one of my cd racks collecting dust.


    Now some of you readers (all five of you) might be wondering how Kurt and I are related.

    Alright, actually none of you really care, but I'm going to tell you anyway.

    I believe Kurt's Dad and my father are first cousins. This means that his Dad and mine have the same grandparents. That makes Kurt and I second cousins because we both share great-grandparents. This makes my young boy Kurt's second cousin once removed because he is one generation removed from Kurt.

    How do I know this absolutely silly minutae? I read this.

    Semper Fidelis

    As the son of US Marine, let me just say this: You don't just make good soldiers, you make good men. And dads. Happy 230th birthday, USMC.

    Wednesday, November 09, 2005

    What about those speakers?

    Cousin Don:

    Change those diapers, buddy, but enquiring minds and audiophiles want to know: what's up with those speakers on either side of the TV in front of my young cousin/nephew/cute little guy? The kid's adorable and all, but bring on the technology!

    Tuesday, November 08, 2005

    French Rioting

    The riots in France are alleged to have been sparked by the electrocution deaths of two teenagers who were hiding from police. The teenagers, both of whom were born in France to immigrant parents, were Muslims of African descent. Here's how the NY Times describes them:
    ...where the unrest first flared on Oct. 27 after two youths jumped over the wall of a electrical substation, thinking they were being pursued by the police, and were electrocuted.
    The Associated Press describes them this way:
    ...angry over the accidental deaths of two teenagers, of Mauritanian and Tunisian descent, who were electrocuted while hiding from police in a power substation.
    CNS News puts it this way before noting their African heritage:
    The clashes, which began Oct. 27 when two teenagers hiding from police were electrocuted in an electrical facility...
    But CNN, the ever-politically-correct news outlet, tries to convey the message that these were black teenagers and trips all over itself:
    Hard to say because it's been 11 days since two African-American teenagers were killed, electrocuted during a police chase, which prompted all of this.
    African American? Born in France to north African parents, and CNN can't figure out they're not Americans?

    Hat Tip: Taranto

    Monday, November 07, 2005

    Gagdad Bob has a clever turn of a phrase:
    Still, I thought that something good could eventually come of all this, if we could just find a way to cross-pollenate the French and Muslims, and create a hybrid race of Muslims that surrender. But if they really wanted to end the violence, I thought it would be a good idea to award the soccer World Cup to France so that their people could counter-riot. It would be a battle between all the hooligans at the bars vs. Allah-huligan ackbars.

    Intifada in France

    With Paris in flames, it's instructive to remember this tidbit:
    Back in the 1990s, the French sneered at America for the Los Angeles riots. As the Chicago Sun-Times reported in 1992: "the consensus of French pundits is that something on the scale of the Los Angeles riots could not happen here, mainly because France is a more humane, less racist place with a much stronger commitment to social welfare programs." President Mitterrand, the Washington Post reported in 1992, blamed the riots on the "conservative society" that Presidents Reagan and Bush had created and said France is different because it "is the country where the level of social protection is the highest in the world."

    Sunday, November 06, 2005

    Generation On-Demand

    Yeah, Yeah I'm a terrible parent. Boy guaranteed to have ADD and all the rest.

    Have you met the boy's dad? Poor little guy is doomed by genetics anyway.

    Plus it is 5 friggin' A.M.!

    Damn Daylight Savings Time ending, hour back crap.

    Boy gets up at 4:30 to 5 now because he didn't fall back.

    Thank God for cable TV and Blue's Clues.

    Crap! Literally, I gotta go change a diaper.....

    Saturday, November 05, 2005

    Sexual Mis-Education

    I know all about this recent foisting of sexual beliefs and morals on children.

    As a matter of fact, a well-to-do town named Lexington, Massachusetts not too far away is at the heart of this controversy.

    There a man was arrested because he refused to leave the principal's office because the principal refused to assure him that either he or his wife would be notified when the school taught "diversity" to their kindergartener (that's a five-year-old), so that they could keep their child out of school on those days.

    Well, I guess it's a good thing my wife and I both went to Parochial schools. I just have to teach my boy not to hang out alone with the lonely priests.

    Well, there's always home schooling--- like hanging out with his really geeky dad for 15 hours a day won't mess him up too much---not!

    Friday, November 04, 2005

    Dispatch From the Religion of Peace - Albeit Well Buried

    In this post I noted that it took the Associated Press five full paragraphs to reveal that the Parisian rioters are Muslims. Tonight, the AP lowers the bar. Check out this report:

  • Marauding youths set fire to cars and warehouses and pelted rescuers with rocks early Saturday, as the worst rioting in a decade spread from Paris to other French cities.
  • A savage assault on a bus passenger highlighted the dangers of travel in Paris' impoverished outlying neighborhoods
  • Attackers doused the woman, in her 50s and on crutches, with an inflammable liquid and set her afire as she tried to get off a bus in the suburb of Sevran Wednesday
  • Justice Minister Pascal Clement deplored the incident, saying it caused him "great emotion" Those Frogs sure know how to express themselves in the face of unspeakable brutality - Ed
  • Rioters burned more than 500 vehicles Friday as the unrest grew beyond the French capital for the first time.
  • Police said troublemakers fired bullets into a vandalized bus and burned 85 more cars in Paris and Suresnes
  • Meanwhile, warehouses in Suresnes and Aubervilliers, on the northern edge of Paris, were set ablaze. Officials said other fires raged outside the capital in Lille, Toulouse, and Rouen, while an incendiary device was tossed at the wall outside a synagogue in Pierrefitte, northwest of Paris.
  • Some 30 mayors from the Seine-Saint-Denis region where the unrest started Oct. 27 met Friday to make a joint call for calm. Claude Pernes, mayor of Rosny-sous-Bois, denounced a "veritable guerrilla situation, urban insurrection" that has taken hold.
  • A national police spokesman, Patrick Hamon, said there appeared to be no coordination among gangs in different areas
  • The violence started Oct. 27 after the accidental electrocution of two teenagers

    Phew, that's exhausting. We're ten full paragraphs into this story, and what have we learned? On the oustskirts of Paris, there have been multiple acts of arson on buildings, a woman on crutches has been immolated, 500 vehicles burned, guns fired into vandalized buses, an attempted arson of a synagogue, and a state of guerilla insurrection declared by local mayors. And who is perpetrating this wall of violence?

    So far, we know this: the responsible parties are "marauding youths," "attackers," "rioters," "troublemakers," and "gang" members. In paragraph eleven, the AP finally reveals what we all knew at the report of the synagogue fire:
    Since then riots have swelled into a broader challenge against the French state and its security forces. The violence has exposed deep discontent in neighborhoods where African and Muslim immigrants and their French-born children are trapped by poverty, unemployment, racial discrimination, crime, poor education and housing.
  • Achtung Cousin Don

    As a new Dad, you should be aware that the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled! Ruled, I tell you! Check it out.
    On Wednesday, a three-judge panel from the 9th Circuit Court dismissed the appeal filed by parents who had sued the Palmdale School District over a sex survey handed to students in the 1st, 3rd and 5th grades. The court, in upholding a lower court decision, ruled that "there is no fundamental right of parents to be the exclusive provider of information regarding sexual matters to their children."
    Got that, Don? Your budding linebacker is subject to sexual propaganda, starting no later than the 1st grade, from all sorts of venues, and you have no fundamental right to influence it. But the Ninth Circus wasn't done.
    Furthermore, parents have no fundamental right to influence their children on sexual matters "in accordance with their personal and religious values and beliefs," the court stated.
    Got that, Don? If the State decides your "influence" on matters of values or religion is inappropriate, you are SOL, buddy.

    Sensibly, the Republicans are trying to end this nonsense by breaking up this liberal cabal. The Democrats, big surprise, will have none of it.
    "On the merits, there is no justification for the Republican court splitting proposal. It is simply a partisan exercise to appease the radical right," Pelosi said in a press release.
    To Nancy Pelosi, if you think you have a right (I would call it an obligation) to influence your children on matters of sex or religion, you are a member of the "radical right." And the Democrats wonder why they lose the "values" vote.

    Thursday, November 03, 2005

    The Truth About Jimmy Carter

    Gagdad Bob takes on the Carter legacy. Some highlights:
    Carter was an awful president but is perhaps an even worse human being. ...
    Carter’s abetting of the fall of the Shah of Iran represented the singular achievement of the Islamic terrorists we are fighting today. ...
    To this day he proudly insists that he was the first American president in 50 years to avoid sending troops into combat, which is why he calls the failed effort to rescue the Iranian hostages a “humanitarian mission.” ...
    Carter not only stood by idly as Islamic terrorists gained their first nation state in Iran, but openly rooted for the communist takeover of Nicaragua. ...
    More tidbits from the Carter era: Inflation 13.3%; Mortgage rates 20%; Unemployment 8%; Crime increased by 50%; Approval rate 25%. And the Carter solution? "Get used to it."

    Now this clown has the temerity to criticize George W. Bush. Read the whole thing.

    French Law Enforcement

    I was watching Brit Hume this evening, and a Fox report on the Muslim riots in Paris noted that, in spite of the arson and mayhem, there were reports only of minor injuries. The reporter attributed this to the French reluctance to use force against the insurgents ("insurgents" being my word, not theirs). All I could think was, "If the French had been willing to apply a little force against these thugs, there might have been some injuries, but the riots might not have lasted eight freaking days with no end in sight."

    Along the same line, Ace has this pithy observation:

    Once upon a time Beirut was called the Paris of the Middle East.

    Now Paris is Beirut on the Seine.

    Some "reporters"

    Original 11/1/05 post bumped to top for an update

    Supreme Court nominee Samuel Alito's mother is 90 years old. She lives in Hamilton, NJ. Yesterday, the same day her son was nominated to the court, she had this to say:
    Alito's politically conservative views were not in dispute. "Of course he's against abortion," his 90-year-old mother Rose told reporters at her home in Hamilton, N.J.
    That's right, there were actually reporters who went to the home of a 90-year-old Catholic woman and asked for her 55-year-old son's position on abortion. And if you called them reporters, they would probably sniff and ask you to refer to them as "journalists."

    What a pack of coyotes.

    Via Boortz

    Update: According to Drudge the siege of Mama Alito is unrelenting:
    The quiet neighborhood Mrs. Alito has lived in for over 50 years has been turned upside down all week by a swarm of national reporters who have phoned and shown up at the doorstep of not only her but many of her neighbors. ...

    One neighbor, who asked the DRUDGE REPORT to withhold their name so the press wouldn’t call them at home, was stunned at the treatment the 90 year-old grandmother had received. “Mama Alito is just a sweet lady and we don’t understand why she is being hounded by these reporters. She can’t even go outside and tend to her fall flowers. She’s just a proud mother, what do they want?”

    When told of the latest Alito episode one Washington insider said, “Why are they harassing Judge Alito’s 90 year-old mother when he has written over 350 legal opinions? The media should leave Judge Alito’s mother alone. ”
    Coyotes is too good for these people. "Leeches" or "vultures" are better.

    Wednesday, November 02, 2005

    Random Thought

    Well, not entirely random, but inspired by a near-miss (shouldn't that be near-hit?).

    Unless you are driving an articulated vehicle, there is NO REASON WHATSOEVER to swing left before turning right or vice versa. For some reason, nobody teaches that in driver education, or nobody listens when they do.

    That is all.
    Michelle Malkin has written a book, Unhinged: Exposing Liberals Gone Wild, the premise of which is how crazy and nasty the liberal movement has become. Here are some excerpts from the reviews at Amazon:

  • Malkin once again has her head firmly lodged in Dubya's colon.
  • It is the most trite, boring, shallow and reactionary piece of crap I've read in a lifetime. Malkin's sycophancy and complete lack of originality or wit makes this book undigestible.
  • Michelle Malkin stands for dividing this great country into races, and making races that she does not like subjugated to those she does. What's the next step? A final solution perhaps?
  • It is shrill, pointless and scary.
  • Another book from a right wing extremist radical who no doubt is in step with that wacko pycho ann coulter.
  • Every time I open one of Malkin's books the foam from this vapid little hate bunny drips all over my boots.
  • Michelle's psychological problem is caused by the fact that she is a frustrated attack blonde.
  • It's for your own good that I advise you to stay away from complicated devices like automobiles, bicycles or any other devices with which your pre-simian hand-like meat mittens and walnut-sized brains could hurt yourselves
  • alas, she's one of that rare breed....a lazy fascist.

    Nope. Nobody unhinged in that group.
  • 'Party trumps race'

    The Democrats fancy themselves the party of "diversity" and "tolerance." In fact, here is what they say about themselves:
    The Democratic Party is America's last, best hope to bridge the divisions of class, race, region, religion, ethnicity and sexual orientation. We will succeed if we continue to govern by the same principles that have made America the greatest nation on earth — the principles of strength, inclusion and opportunity.
    With those platitudes in mind, it is instructive indeed to see how the party of inclusion and opportunity treats a black Republican:
    Black Democratic leaders in Maryland say that racially tinged attacks against Lt. Gov. Michael S. Steele in his bid for the U.S. Senate are fair because he is a conservative Republican.
    Such attacks against the first black man to win a statewide election in Maryland include pelting him with Oreo cookies during a campaign appearance, calling him an "Uncle Tom" and depicting him as a black-faced minstrel on a liberal Web log.
    Nice. Oh, yeah, the Democrats are also real big on the Constitutional "right to privacy." You know that one, the one that guarantees that a woman can abort her husband's child without telling him. So how do the Dems demonstrate their respect for the right to privacy? Like this:
    Operatives for the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee (DSCC) also obtained a copy of (Steele's) credit report - the only Republican candidate so targeted.
    Not much privacy afforded there. The diverse and tolerant Democrats go on to say that racist tactics are A-OK with them, as long as they are directed against Republicans:
    State Sen. Lisa A. Gladden, a black Baltimore Democrat, said she does not expect her party to pull any punches, including racial jabs at Mr. Steele, in the race to replace retiring Democratic U.S. Sen. Paul S. Sarbanes.
    "Party trumps race, especially on the national level," she said. "If you are bold enough to run, you have to take whatever the voters are going to give you. It's democracy, perhaps at its worse, but it is democracy."
    There you have it. A Democratic state senator admits, unapologetically, that her party represents democracy at its worst. No argument here.

    Tuesday, November 01, 2005

    Associated Press Buries the Lede

    Here are the first sentences from the first four paragraphs of this AP report on six nights of rioting in Paris:

  • "Unrest spread across troubled suburbs around Paris in a sixth night of violence Tuesday as police clashed with angry youths and scores of vehicles were torched in at least nine towns, local officials said."
  • "Police in riot gear fired rubber bullets at advancing gangs of youths in Aulnay-sous-Bois — one of the worst-hit suburbs — where 15 cars were burned, said the prefecture that runs the Seine-Saint-Denis region."
  • "Four people were arrested for throwing stones at police in nearby Bondy where 14 cars were burned, the prefecture said."
  • "Officials gave an initial count of 69 vehicles torched in nine suburbs across the Seine-Saint-Denis region that arcs Paris on the north and northeast."

    Finally, finally, in the fifth paragraph, we discover this:

    "The area, home mainly to families of immigrant origin, often from Muslim North Africa, is marked by soaring unemployment and delinquency. Anger and despair thrive in the tall cinder-block towers and long "bars" that typically make up housing projects in France."

    That's a lot of reading to discover that the rioters are unemployed, delinquent, angry, desperate Muslims.