Happy New Year
So I am going to watch the Giants-Raiders game, blog a little, and go to bed early. Here's hoping you have a terrific 2006 and praying it turns out better than 2005 did for me.
PALU, Indonesia - Suspected Islamic militants set off a powerful bomb packed with nails Saturday at a busy market frequented by Christians, killing eight people and wounding 45 as they bought pork for New Year's Eve celebrations.Obviously, the solution to this carnage is some sort of treaty, right? Maybe a "peace deal" will settle things down. Wrong!
The blast occurred in Palu on Sulawesi Island, which has been plagued in recent years by religious violence and terrorism by Islamic extremists.
The early morning explosion sent ball bearings and nails tearing into vendors and shoppers, leaving the market scattered with dismembered bodies. Police and passers-by carried bloodied bodies to cars. One man, apparently unhurt, held his head in his hands as he screamed.
Despite a peace deal, Islamic militants have continued a campaign of bombings, shootings and other attacks on Christians, including market blasts in May that killed 20 people and the beheadings of three Christian schoolgirls in October. No one has been charged in those attacks.Yeah, right. Let's continue to negotiate and deal with these barbarians. The sooner we acknowledge the evil we confront, the sooner we can destroy it and its adherents. And until the so-called "moderate" Muslims confront and condemn this monstrous behavior, I say profile the hell out 'em.
SANTA CRUZ, Calif. - The thefts began shortly after the day surfers call Blank Monday, when the surfing community from San Diego to Santa Cruz and beyond felt caught in the undertow of what Grubby Clark had done."Abruptly" going out of business is a classic Atlas scenario. But it gets better (or worse) still:
Mr. Clark, a reclusive surf industrialist whose given name is Gordon, is responsible for producing foam cores, or blanks, for most of the nation's surf boards.
On Dec. 5, Mr. Clark abruptly went out of business.
In 2003, Mr. Clark received a notice from the Environmental Protection Agency for, among other things, failing to safeguard workers against the accidental release of toluene diisocyanate, or TDI, a liquid catalyst and known carcinogen used in making polyurethane foam.One wonders if Clark is now hanging out in Colorado with John Galt.
There was also the cost of workers' compensation, insuring machines of his own design and "a claim being made by the widow of an employee who died from cancer," he wrote.
"For owning and operating Clark Foam," the letter began, "I may be looking at very large fines, civil lawsuits, and even time in prison."
But Christmas is something different. Feeling is the point of it, somewhere under all that shopping. To think of Scrooge is to think of his conversion, the cartwheeling of his emotions after his long night of the soul. But the more interesting part of the story is his dogged resistance to feeling the way everyone thinks he's supposed to feel - about death, about charity, about prize turkeys hanging at the poulterer's.How sweet. For the Times, it's all about how you feel. Never mind that the point of A Christmas Carol was finding redemption for what you had done. Why let deeds get in the way of feelings? The hollow sentiment marches on:
Most of us know how we want to feel this time of year, whatever holiday we are celebrating. We want to feel safe, loving and well loved, well fed, openhanded, and able to be moved by the powerful but very humble stories that gather in this season. We would like to feel that there is a kind of innocence, not in our hearts, since our hearts are such complicated places, but in the very gestures and rituals of late December.Say what? Read that again, because it say's absolutely nothing. Moreover, consider the passive tense of the verbs. We are supposed to "feel safe," not "enjoy the security of our home." We want to be "well fed," not to "celebrate the bounty" that our efforts over the past year have provided us. We should feel "openhanded," which means exactly nothing I can put a finger on. And we long to be "moved" by "humble stories." How, pray tell, is the story of Jesus Christ a "humble story?" It might be the story of a humble man, but it surely isn't a humble story. If you don't believe me, tour the Vatican someday. The Times goes on:
...whether you are Christian or Jewish or Muslim or merely human, the word we would like to feel most profoundly now is Peace.Regardless of the absurdity of constructing an argument around somehow feeling a word, that's a nice platitude, but that's all it is. Because "peace" is an illusion. Even if you capitalize it and turn it into some sort of Timesian invioble state of being. "Peace" lasts only as long as someone who dislikes you allows it. It's not something you can achieve for yourself, only something allowed to you by your enemies. By my recollection, I was pretty peaceful feeling on September 10, 2001. Heck, September 11, 2001 was a peaceful morning up until the first plane hit the tower. But to think we were at "Peace" before we were struck is delusional. Likewise, unless you can climb into the head of every Jew-hating, death-to-America chanting, throat-sawing, murderous Islamist and see his (and recently, her) thoughts and plans, don't kid yourself. You might not be under attack, but you are certainly not in some Times-envisioned version of "Peace."
We come into this season knowing how we want it to make us feel, and we are usually disappointed because humans never cease to be human. But we are right to remember how we would like to feel. We are right to long for peace and good will.Oh, brother. For the sake of wrapping this thing up before the New Year, let's put aside the Times laser-sharp focus on our feelings of "Peace," as opposed to our reality. Here's my translation of that last bit of tripe:
In a fit of rage, a Pakistani father has slit his eldest daugher's throat because she married for love.Yeah, that marrying for love stuff is pretty bad. Better make sure she didn't talk anybody else into that kind nonsense.
The man killed the woman in her sleep before killing his three other daughters in a remote village in Burewala, eastern Pakistan.
Police say Nazir Ahmad feared the three younger girls - aged four to 12 - would follow in their sister's footsteps.
The veteran Nomar Garciaparra is willing to play several positions, and the Yankees met with his agent, Arn Tellem, on Wednesday. Tellem called it a good meeting, but he said Garciaparra would not sign anywhere this week.Can you imagine an infield of Nomar Garciaparra at second, Derek Jeter at short, and Alex Rodriquez at third? Some would argue that Jeter was the third best shortstop on the team!
(Y)ou've got to begin to transfer authority to the Iraqis, and there is no reason, Bob, that young American soldiers need to be going into the homes of Iraqis in the dead of night, terrorizing kids and children, you know, women, breaking sort of the customs of the - of - of - of - historical customs, religious customs, whether you like it or not.That's right, the same treasonous, cowardly John Kerry that conveyed 3 shrapnel wounds into Purple Hearts and an early discharge before accusing his brothers in arms of war crimes in VietNam, has now accused the current American military of "terrorism" in Iraq! And his rationale?
Iraqis should be doing that.So to John F*cking Kerry, it's not terrorism that's the problem, it's the failure of the Bush administration to properly outsource it to the Iraqis. What a tool. John Kerry is an intellectual dwarf, and a political hack. He has no vision and no goals short of his own short term political power. And he remains dangerous to this country. Thank the Good Lord he was too incompentent to succeed in a national presidential campaign.
Bitterly cold air poured southward across the nation's midsection Wednesday, dropping temperatures to record lows from Montana to Illinois. The mercury dived to a record 45 below at West Yellowstone, Mont., the frequently cold spot at the west entrance to Yellowstone National Park, the National Weather Service said. The old record for Dec. 7 was 39 below, set in 1927.Even the desert paradise of Las Vegas is freezing:
Temperatures read like baseball scores in northeastern New Mexico - zero at Las Vegas and 1 at Raton. "I'm sitting here in my office and it's freezing and we've got the heat on full blast," said Bill Cox, owner of the Hillcrest Restaurant in Las Vegas.Question: How long before some twenty-something college kid in dreadlocks and a Che! t-shirt gravely warns the rest of us that this cold wave is a sure sign that global warming, and unless we dismantle modernity per his direction, we are all doomed?
"Women and men are differently affected by climate change and they contribute differently to climate change," said Ulrike Rohr, director of the German-based group called "Genanet-Focal point gender, Environment, Sustainability."Someone might take these feminists seriously if they weren't so ridiculous.
"What we are calling for is to take into account more of the social aspects of climate change," Rohr added.