MrSpkr's random thoughts . . .
Sunday, October 31, 2004
Not much blogging until after the kids trick or treat this evening. The wife-unit (aka She-Who-Must-Be-Obeyed) has decided we WILL have a Halloween party. So, today we are having a bunch of friends and family over to act silly and meet and greet.
Anyway, I will be tied up most of the rest of the day. This morning, a few technical changes to the blog -- the text should be a little easier to read now, among other changes -- and updated my links (note that Instapundit now links correctly, as does Random Numbers. Also, Plainsman has resumed posting now -- and has a great entry on a day at the range.
One final note for you football fans -- make sure you are an officially sanctioned tailgater!
Saturday, October 30, 2004
Not a legend anymore
Cronkite has lost his mind
Cronkite may have been decent once, but he's now either delusional or just an embittered partisan hack.
From his CNN interview:
KING: Tonight, four days before America votes in the first election since 9/11, a new Osama bin Laden tape addressing the American people and naming both President Bush and John Kerry. How will this affect the race? We'll ask a living legend of broadcast journalism, Walter Cronkite, the former CBS News anchor.
CRONKITE: And I have a feeling that it could tilt the election a bit. In fact, I'm a little inclined to think that Karl Rove, the political manager at the White House, who is a very clever man, he probably set up bin Laden to this thing. The advantage to the Republican side is to get rid of, as a principal subject of the campaigns right now, get rid of the whole problem of the al Qaqaa explosive dump. Right now, that, the last couple of days, has, I think, upset the Republican campaign.
Sigh. I posted yesterday, making fun of the lunacy of the whole "the Republicans are behind this" claims. Now a major media figure comes out espousing the worst views of the far left?
I weep for the future, I truly do.
Cliff May has it all figured out.
This was too doggone close
I can't handle more games like this. Let's get past A&M and I'll feel a bit better about life.
Friday, October 29, 2004
Yes, she really is asleep . . .
and yes, I really am jealous of someone who can sleep this easily.
But then, Katie is just that way. My youngest daughter, now six, has Down's Syndrome. For some, that would be a tragedy (it was for me, at least, in the beginning). Now, however, I find joy and humor in little things I really didn't notice as much with my other children.
Down's is interesting. Katie is, mentally, about 2 years old (coincidentally, my favorite age). She is playful, fun, and alert. She is also in that "all or nothing" mode parents know, love, and sometimes fear.
So she decided to go to sleep. She just couldn't quite make it into bed.
Sleep well, Kathrine. Daddy loves you.
Wow, that didn't take too long
Apparently, those looney liberals moved faster than I thought. Here's a sample of stuff from my favorite looney left forum, the Democratic Underground:
I just listened to Randi on AAR...
1. Trot out this tape
2. Come up with OBL on Monday because "traced the tape" and found him
Hmmm, interesting idea.
Bin Laden is Bush's partner.
This OBL Tape is TOO much of a coincidence.
This smells to high heaven.
Please lets get ride of this crew on Tuesday.
I have a sick feeling as Randi alluded to --- something is up. .
These crooked bastards will parade out OBL over the weekend and it is over. This whole thing is weird - somthing is up, I was feeling confident not I don't know?
The tape is conveniently released the Friday afternoon before the election just in time for the evening news programs, and after a particularly bad week for the chimp. I smell one big, stinking rat.
That's a few for starters. Incredible. If there are this many people out there with these kind of thoughts, I should buy stock in Alcoa. Tinfoil hats will drive those stock prices WAY up!
Bin Laden for Bush?
Very oafish of him -- Bin Laden is a symbol of why we have to fight the war on terrorism. He appears on a video haranguing the US and Bush garners another 2% of the vote.
Wow. Stay tuned, sports fans.
Here is a story on Bin Laden's statement. Any bets on how long before the looney Left says this is part of a conspiracy to get Bush elected?
Hair today, gone tomorrow
For those of you who haven't made the comparison between Bush and Edwards yet, here is a great movie showing just how different the two men really are.
Nuclear drink alert is in effect.
Hat tip, Southern Appeal.
Local10.com - Vote 2004 - Things Get Ugly At Early Voting Locations
Local10.com - Vote 2004 - Things Get Ugly At Early Voting Locations
More Democrats trying to shout down or otherwise intimidate Republican voters. A kinder, gentler, more compassionate party, indeed.
Finished the big motion yesterday, but the boss is gone Monday and Tuesday, adn we have a slew of pretrial crap to get out by next Wednesday.
Sigh. No rest for the weary.
Wednesday, October 27, 2004
A few words on the South Dakota Senate Race
I've been following this for while, hoping Republicans could knock Tom Daschle out of office (at long last) and send a message to midwestern Democrat politicians that they can no longer say one thing at home and do another in Washington.
The polls in South Dakota are VERY tight -- but seem to be showing John Thune up by about 0.5%. Very tight -- it might matter how many dead folks vote on certain Indian reservations (South Dakota's other Senator, Tim Johnson (D) won the overwhelming majority of the dead Indian vote in 2002).
I've also found a couple of good blogs to track this race. One describes much of the day to day operations of the campaign (I have linked specifically to a post on poll results). The other is broadly focused on South Dakota politics (and has a few copies of some killer political ads painting Daschle as out of touch with South Dakota).
Check them both out -- they are worth the time!
In other news, work is still killing me, so posting will be light for a few more days.
This is insane -- and becoming all too common
When Democrats Fear Losing they might just try to run you down for supporting Republicans.
Sigh. I lay the blame for any deaths in this election process squarely at the DNC's figurative feet. It is oh so apropos that the Jackass is the party symbol.
Tuesday, October 26, 2004
The Media Might Be Biased? Say It Isn't So!
FOXNews.com - Views - One Economy, Two Spins
So, the rule is, when economic conditions are as they appear NOW, it is bad ONLY IF A REPUBLICAN IS PRESIDENT; otherwise, it's a great economy.
Sigh. Hat tip, Southern Appeal.
Checking in - - - what a crazy week . . .
Two hearings, a pair of trial deadlines, and my mother flying in from Indiana are all on the calendar for the next four days. Posting will be light throughout the week.
By the way, am I the only one who thinks that the Democrat running Electoral-Vote Predictor is allowing his partisanship to leak through?
Andrew Sullivan Endorses Kerry
Who'd a Thunk It?
I guess he recognizes that th ebest person to support Andrew's One True Issue in this campaign (creating a right for gays to marry) is John Kerry.
Monday, October 25, 2004
Rehnquist hospitalized with throat cancer
The stakes for this election just rose exponentially.
But what will she do on CSPAN?
A Democratic challenger for a NE Indiana congressional seat walked off the set after suffering stage fright.
Poor woman. I can empathize. In my first public speech before a large group of individuals, I became so flustered that, while I was arguing against a particular position, I fumbled my words and ended up making arguments favoring the position (then closing my speech with a feeble "So vote against this measure!"). Ouch. Very embarrassing.
The incident occurred at a meeting of the Oklahoma Intercollegiate Legislature. This is a mock legislature composed of students from colleges and universities across the state of Oklahoma. The organization meets at the Oklahoma Capitol Building twice per year, using the state House and Senate chambers.
I was very frustrated with myself, vowed to do better, and eventually won an award for the best freshman legislator that session.
I went on to serve as the Speaker of the House of Representatives in the organization for two terms and developed my current (now nearly twenty year) fascination with politics. I also became a pretty good public speaker due to OIL. I owe a lot to OIL.
Anyway, the point is, I crashed and burned. Then I got better. This candidate can, too.
Except, OIL is fictitious, and I had lots of opportunities to practice and get better. She doesn't.
OIL doesn't involve real legislation impacting real people. In the end, it is all pretend. After five days of meetings, the session ends and everyone goes back home.
Congress isn't like that. There, things are done for real.
I think it laudable that this woman has decided to enter the arena and campaign for a Congressional seat, particularly against a strong incumbent.
But if she cannot make a speech before a TV camera, she cannot possibly perform the duties of the job.
Next time, I would hope this candidate thinks about these things before running for office. Politics is not a game, and the United States Congress is not a mock legislature. It impacts too many people to treat it as though it were.
Saturday, October 23, 2004
Federal Appeals Court Upholds Rule of Law in Ohio
Ruling reverses earlier decision regarding the legality of certain provisional ballots.
This is a good thing. If you cannot be bothered to show up at the proper polling place to vote, then you really have no business voting.
Good on the Sixth Circuit.
Friday, October 22, 2004
Day By Day Chris Muir's wonderful cartoon) is set to resume production December 1, 2004!
In anticipation, I have returned him to the top of this blog. I look forward to more of his great stuff!
Thursday, October 21, 2004
In other news, Sun Still Hot, Bright.
Obesity Gets Part of Blame for Care Costs
No kidding. If you eat like a pig, don't exercise, and have more chins than normal people have limbs, you are going to suffer some health problems (like diabetes, heart disease, etc., etc.).
Not to worry -- Kerry wants to take the responsibility away from you by providing free government healthcare.
Sigh. Another sign of the death of personal responsibility.
Marlow Cook is not that important
Marlow Cook wrote an editorialin which he endorsed Senator Kerry. No big deal, except for one fact several liberal commentators are harping upon: Mr. Cook is the former Republican Senator from Kentucky.
The editorial is also noteworthy because it quote two prominent conservative commentators, George Will and William F. Buckley.
Gasp! The horrors! "Here, here at last are the long-lost reasonable conservatives," they say.
"This is why Bu$hitler will lose -- influential Republicans are rebelling against him!"
Hogwash. Let's have a little something I call context.
First, the quotes. Cook lists these quotes from George Will and William F. Buckley as additional reasons he will vote against Bush and for Kerry:
This administration cannot be trusted to govern if it cannot be counted on to think and having thought, to have second thoughts.
If I knew then what I know now about what kind of situation we would be in, I would have opposed the war.
I suppose it would be asking too much for Cook to actually put those quotes by Will and Buckley in context?
I thought so.
Will's comment appeared in the Washington Post. It was part of a rant in May of this year regarding this statement Bush made in response to a question about the viability of democracy in Iraq and Afghanistan:
There's a lot of people in the world who don't believe that people whose skin color may not be the same as ours can be free and self-govern. I reject that. I reject that strongly. I believe that people who practice the Muslim faith can self-govern. I believe that people whose skins aren't necessarily -- are a different color than white can self-govern.
Will's position was that President Bush perhaps overly optimistic about the chances for success in bringing democracy to that part of the world. I guess Mr. Cook agrees with George Will and disagrees with the President as to those chances. Pretty racist stance to take, IMHO, but Mr. Cook is entitled to it.
Buckley's quote is anachronistic, and taken out of context. The full quote is:
With the benefit of minute hindsight, Saddam Hussein wasn't the kind of extra-territorial menace that was assumed by the administration one year ago. If I knew then what I know now about what kind of situation we would be in, I would have opposed the war.
Subsequently, Buckley clarified:
I said ten days ago that if I had known back then in February 2003 what we know now I would not have counseled war against Iraq. That statement struck some as disloyal to a cause, some others as prime bait for exploitation by such as Senator Kerry. Then on July 12, President Bush gave an enormously illuminating speech to the Y-12 National Security Complex in Oak Ridge, Tennessee, which sheds light on ambient questions. What especially catches the eye is his saying that "Libya is dismantling its weapons of mass destruction and long-range missile programs. This progress came about through quiet diplomacy between America, Britain, and the Libyan government."
The mind travels immediately to the question: Well, why could not diplomacy have accomplished in Iraq what it accomplished in Libya? But the President keen-wittedly bases the success of Libya on quiet diplomacy to be sure, but quiet diplomacy backed up by our own commitment to "defending the peace by taking the fight to the enemy." He is contending, in effect, that if it hadn't been for our military entry into Iraq, Qaddafi might well have continued his development of nuclear weapons. Who can dispositively argue that this analysis is wrong?
Buckley now sees the war as necessary and has focused what criticism he has expressed on Iraq to issues related to rebuilding the country.
Cook also trots out the canard that Republicans beat Max Cleland in Georgia by questioning his patriotism. Nonsense. Cleland lost because of his record -- a record that included voting against the Homeland Security act because it didn't guarantee union protection to employees. In other words, Cleland was willing to politicize Homeland Security to gain a sop to his union supporters, and Georgia voters saw right through it.
Finally, let's dispel any ideas one may have that Cook is either popular, influential, or anywhere near the mainstream of Republican voters. Though he is still registered Republican, he supports local Democratic candidates, like Christine Jennings, running for Congress against incumbent Republican Katherine Harris.
While he may once have been popular enough in Kentucky to win a Senate seat (barely), he has been out of office for nearly thirty years. Originally from a county judge and member of the Kentucky Legislature, he was elected to the Senate from Kentucky in 1968. That is the only state-wide election he ever won, and he barely did so with 51% of the vote. Absent the national Nixon landslide, he almost certainly would not have won this election. He ran for re-election to the seat in 1974 and lost, only pulling 44% of the vote. At that point, rather than returning to Kentucky, he elected to remain in Washington, D.C. and practice law (the end-goal for many Washington insiders who lost their final elections). Upon retirement, rather than returning to Kentucky, he elected to move to Sarasota, Florida. His opinion will carry little if any weight in Kentucky these days.
Cook has been described as a moderate by some, but whose stance was really closer to the now largely-defunct Rockefeller wing of the party. Today, he would be considered a RINO, like Leahy.
Dems can have Cook, a one time winner who skated into office on the coat tails of another candidate thirty years ago (about the same time John Kerry's Christmas in Cambodia was seared, seared into his memory). Republicans will be happy to take Zell Miller, who, despite liberal rhetoric, is in the mainstream of America and has election after state-wide election victories (most by wide margins) to prove it.
Check out Election Hell
... now prominently listed on the links bar. A good source for stories regarding attempts to violate election law to steal the election.
Work is still busy, so posting is light. Should be back to normal by next week.
Just heard Sean Hannity say he thinks Bush will win Ohio, Wisconsin, Iowa, West Virginia, Florida and New Mexico.
I think Sean is being a little too optimistic. I suspect Bush will win Ohio, Wisconsin, West Virginia and Florida. The electoral vote will be close, though I suspect Bush will win a majority of the popular vote this time around.
Speaking of the Electoral College, I'm working on a post regarding proposed changes to the system (or whether any change should be made at all). I hope to have it up tomorrow.
Wednesday, October 20, 2004
American Revolution was Wrong War, Wrong Place, Wrong Time
At least, according to Jimmy Carter.
Idiot. Hat tip, Spoons.
Tuesday, October 19, 2004
To Help Seniors Remember Whom To Support . . .
we now have daily pill counters with the Kerry-Edwards logo. Even the Alzheimer's patients can remember now!
Monday, October 18, 2004
Psychological Projection Defined
"That's not how a President would make that charge, Albert."
Hardee's Girl .com - All About The New Western Bacon Thickburger Commercial
Hat tip, Spoons.
For some reason, I'm craving a hamburger right now . . .
Maybe this is why they are so darned bitter . . .
ABC News: 'Primetime Live' Poll: More Republicans Satisfied With Sex Lives Than Democrats
I note the poll also shows Democrats are more likely to fake orgasms than men. So they lie to you both in bed and out.
Figures. It also destroys the old saying that men would like to date a Democrat, but want to marry a Republican.
I couldn't let this one go
Computer problems reported at some early voting sites
Wow. Four years to fix this, and they didn't get it done. All they had to do was adopt a simple, easily recounted ballot. Back home in Oklahoma, we always used a form similar to this one:
This ballot is machine read (the technology is similar to the Scantron(c) technology used by many schools to grade multiple guess tests, but is easily recounted by hand. Just draw a line to connect the arrow next to your choices. Easy to decipher, easy to do, easy to recount.
Now, Florida opted for "state of the art" touch-screen ballots, etc., etc. Call me crazy, but I really don't think I would want my state to volunteer to beta test someone else's software.
In any event, it's all Bush' fault anyway (Jeb or George, same difference):
At the Tamarac branch public library, where voting stopped after the computer glitch, Sally Zwanger, a poll watcher for the Kerry campaign, claimed the problems reflected on the inability of Gov. Jeb Bush's administration to fix voting problems left over from the 2000 election.
"The worst thing to hear was, 'I support Kerry, but I can't wait in this line,'" she said. "We are having a repeat of 2000, and it's only in Florida that this could happen. This administration would do anything to ensure that he [Bush] stays in office."
Zwanger said at one point there were 63 people in line, most of whom had gone home without voting by 11 a.m.
so, some folks decided that they really didn't want to wait in line for a few hours while the local, DEMOCRAT CONTROLLED County Election Boards tried to hide the fact they were as incompetent now as they were back in 2000, and that is somehow Bush's fault?
Most of the voters waiting in the line were seniors, and many shared Emert's frustration. They repeatedly uttered phrases such as, "This is ridiculous," and "This is so frustrating."
In Palm Beach County, the center of the madness during the recount four years ago, a Democratic state legislator said she wasn't given a complete absentee ballot when she asked to opt for paper instead of the electronic touch-screen machines. And in Orange County, the touch-screen system briefly crashed, paralyzing voting in Orlando and its immediate suburbs.
Also coming out of the polls on Monday, Steve Perez, 44, said he came early to cast a ``protest vote'' for Ralph Nader.
``What's important is that you vote. I didn't want to get in all the hoopla with all the turnout in Election Day,'' said Perez, a substitute teacher.
Good man. Hope a lot of your fellow travellers will do the same.
State Rep. Shelley Vana was not so happy. She said the paper absentee ballot she was given at a Palm Beach County site was missing one of its two pages, including the proposed amendments to the state constitution. She said election workers were indifferent when she pointed out the oversight.
``There was absolutely no concern on the part of the folks at the Supervisor of Elections Office that this page was missing. This is not a good start. If there are incomplete ballots out there, I can't imagine I would be the only one getting it,'' she said.
County elections supervisor Theresa LePore did not immediately return a call for comment.
LePore, a Democrat, was also in charge during the 2000 electoral fiasco. The voters of Palm Beach County, Florida didn't see fit to replace her, and they act surprised that they are still having voting problems?
To be fair, as screwed up as the system was in 2000, it is unlikely there were many strong candidates anxious to challenge the incumbent for a chance to be intensely scrutinized by world media this year.
Of course, the circus came to town early this year, too:
In Miami-Dade County, about 150 people gathered Monday morning for a rally led by the Rev. Al Sharpton and former U.S. Attorney General Janet Reno. Some people were carrying homemade signs that said ``Early Voting Counts'' and ``Every Vote Matters.''
And my brethren in the legal community have mobilized:
Even as voters turned out, lawyers were going to court in Fort Lauderdale to argue a lawsuit over the lack of paper backup on the electronic machines.
Wow. Get some popcorn and soft drinks. This will be entertaining, at least.
Steven den Beste returns
with a great, short look at polling trends.
Hat tip, Wretchard.
Unfortunately, he also notes on his main page that he still has no interest in returning to regular posting. Pity. den Beste's U.S.S. Clueless was one of my favorite, "must check daily" blogs for about two and a half years. Although I didn't care for his work on anime', his political and foreign policy posts were thought provoking and quite well done. This blog exists in part due to his work.
Sunday, October 17, 2004
Christians Target Muslims Around New York
NEW YORK - Explosions hit five Muslim Mosques in New York on Saturday and local authorities said four more police officers and an American interpreter were killed by car bombs as violence flared while American Christians began preparations for the holy Christmas season.
Homemade bombs exploded in quick succession before dawn at the five mosques in four different boroughs, causing no casualties but further alarming the Muslim minority community already on edge over the perceived rise of Christian militancy following last year's ouster of George Bush.
In August, coordinated attacks hit four mosques in New York City and one in Detroit, killing at least 12 people and wounding dozens more in the first significant strike against the United States' estimated 800,000 Muslims since the election last year.
"It is a criminal act to make America unstable and to create religious difficulties," the Imam Zaya Yousef of New York City Mosque said of the latest attacks. "But this will not happen because we all live together like brothers in this country through sadness and happiness."
No group claimed responsibility for the attacks, which were condemned by the National Council of Churches USA, which describes itself as an ecumenical partnership of 36 Christian denominations in the United States and which is believed to have ties to some Christian insurgents.
"Christianity doesn't support the ongoing terrorism," Father John Doe of the Council said.
U.S. commanders have warned of a possible increase in rebel attacks during Christmas, when insurgent activity surged last year. Christmas, a holiday celebrating the birth of Christ, is marked by greater religious fervor, and some extremists believe they will be received as martyrs in heaven if they die fighting non-Christians during the holy month.
In hopes of preventing rebel attacks, U.S. troops have stepped up military operations in Protestant areas north and west of the city.
On Saturday, City clerics said they were ready to resume peace talks with the government if the Americans suspended attacks and released the city's chief negotiator, Father David Smith, who was arrested Friday.
Talks broke down Thursday because of what the clerics said was the government's "impossible condition" – handing over Canadian terror mastermind Thomas W. Brown and other "terrorists." The pastors said Brown was not in the city, a claim that U.S. and New York City authorities dispute.
Oh wait -- that's not the real article. The real article talks about Muslim insurgents, "terrorists", and fighting around Baghdad and Falujah. I just got confused because, well, you know, Christians and Muslims are both equally violent in the name of their religion, and, well, the two are morally equivalent and everything. My computer seems to have switched out "Christians" for "Muslims" and such. Oops.
Saturday, October 16, 2004
Doesn't it always work like this?
The first Oklahoma Sooners football game of the regular season that IS NOT televised on local channels is the first one in which my beloved Sooners fell behind in points and made a game of it (though we eventually pulled it off).
Watching the game statistics on ESPN just isn't the same, somehow.
I'm having an interesting debate with an acquaintance on the state of free speech in Canada. I'll post it here later -- suffice it to say that, although the Canadian Constitution purports to defend free speech, the wording explicitly allows the Parliament to set such regulations and limitations as are "reasonable and justified". Guess who decides whether something is reasonable or justified? That's right -- Parliament, along with an increasingly liberal court.
Scary stuff -- Canada is experiencing the slippery slope effect. Stay tuned.
Spoons links to Democratic Dementia
and it isn't pretty. This is what we're up against -- raving lunatics with no sense of morality, decency or irony. Frightening.
Friday, October 15, 2004
Charles Krauthammer appears to have just learned that Senator Edwards is a member of the Plaintiff's bar . . .
while those of us who have worked with that crowd were not surprised at all.
Welcome to the Links, Plainsman!
If you have a minute, check out Plainsman's blog. Another lawyer-type (we move in herds) from the mid-West, Plainsman and I see eye to eye on immigration, guns, and much in politics.
Slow posting today . . .
as Amy and Oldest Daughter are leaving town for a cheerleading competition in Louisiana. I'll be holed up in the Home Bunker under seige by the three youngest kids until late Saturday night.
Two quick notes -- check out this GREAT post by Plainsman on his blog! He and I agree quite a bit on the immigration question, though I would go further than shutting down the borders -- I'd seek repatriation of all those here illegally.
Wednesday, October 13, 2004
Jaw-droppingest comment of the night: "Bob, I guess the President and you and I are three examples of lucky people who married up . . . and some would say me more so than others."
Wow. Neither my wife nor I can believe he said that.
Anyone else catch the irony of President Bush making the oblique slam on CBS (challenging the credibility of Kerry's citing national news networks) in a debate moderated by a CBS correspondent?
Heh. Very nice.
Best moment in the debate thus far . . . when Bush crammed Kerry's vote against the 1990 resolution to use force against Iraq in Kuwait right down the French-looking Senator's throat.
And what's this about guys having AK-47's lying on the bed of a home? Those things are STILL illegal.
Drudge Report breaks story on Sex Lawsuit against Bill O'Reilly
Wow. Bill O'Reilly -- you naughty, naughty boy.
Either this is all bunk, or Bill O'Reilly suddenly has a very big problem.
Given the detailed nature of the claims, I wouldn't be surprised if the Plaintiff had a recording of the statements she alleges Mr. O'Reilly made. Question is, can context excuse any of them, and did she truly feel harassed by the statements?
The timing of this is interesting -- three weeks before the general election and a couple of weeks after O'Reilly scored an exclusive interview with President Bush.
Voter Registrations Possibly Trashed
Yes, the idiots who did this should be disenfranchised and locked up for life, too.
I'm an equal opportunity prosecutor when it comes to those who would pervert our elections.
Links are temporarily out -- I'll fix them later. As daily hits increased, I thought this template would be a little easier on the eyes.
Blacks express ambivalence about Kerry
This is very bad news for Kerry. If he cannot energize the black vote, if he cannot motivate record numbers of blacks to get to the polls, then stick a fork in him, he's done.
Remember, Al Gore DID energize the black vote. He was Clinton's VP, which carried some weight politically. He sensationalized the James Byrd and condemned Bush for vetoing Hate Crime legislation in Texas (conveniently ignoring the fact the perps got the death penalty -- did he want George to , too?), and Gore still lost in several key states.
Kerry's people should be worrying about this.
The Scandal Generator!
Good fun from Comedy Central!
A little butchery of the Bohemian Rhapsody.
Canadian free speech takes a hit in the name of political correctness.
CBC Montreal - Man told to pay gay man $1,000 for comment: "MONTREAL - Quebec's Human Rights Commission has ordered a used car salesman in Sorel to pay a gay man $1,000 for a derogatory comment made three years ago.
In 2001, Marcel Bardier told the man's travelling companion to keep an eye on him because he was a 'fifi', a french word that equates to 'fag'.
The man, who cannot be identified because of a court order, filed a complaint with the Commission which said the comment caused him to feel dehumanized, humiliated and degraded.
Bardier told the Commission that he had nothing against homosexuals, but was simply acting in a fatherly way to the man's companion by warning him of his sexuality.
The Human Rights Commission ruled that the term was an inappropriate way of referring to homosexuals and shows a lack of respect for the human dignity people are entitled to."
Hat tip -- Volokh Conspiracy.
Let me start by saying that I find the comment somewhat offensive; however, since when is it the duty of a democratic government to ensure that no citizen is offended?
What ever happened to the idea that citizens in a democracy are allowed to express their opinions or beliefs without fear of government persecution?
And, for those of you who support the decision, where does one draw the line? Is anti-Semitism okay? Should Muslims who preach hatred of Jews be given a pass? How about Christians who condemn homosexuality (as opposed to homosexual individuals)?
How about Canadians who make derogatory or offensive comments to people based on their nationality?
If you feel a monetary fine is appropriate, then why isn't jail time? What will you do with those folks who lack the ability to pay the fine? If you see nothing wrong with locking up the folks who lack the resources to pay a fine, then why isn't locking [i]everyone[/i] who violates this speech code an appropriate punishment?
And finally -- if you support this decision -- who gets to determine what is "offensive"? More importantly, what will you do when something you say is considered offensive?
Tuesday, October 12, 2004
Voter Fraud in Colorado
Hat Tip, the Corner.
Sigh. See my earlier entry on why we need to tighten security and protect the sanctity of our elections. This is ridiculous.
Monday, October 11, 2004
Things You Just Can't Do At the Alamo . . . apparently include having sex on the grounds.
Idiots. And if they think the San Antonio police are bad, wait until they face their military superiors. . . (A local San Antonio news report sats that officials at Fort Sam Houston have confirmed that the pair are both active duty stationed at that base -- and that the military is "extremely embarassed by the allegations."
Remember Peter Garrett?
Okay, remember the freakishly tall bald guy who fronted for the '80's rock band, Midnight Oil?
Yeah -- that's him.
Well, now he is known as Peter Garrett, M.P.
Who woulda thunk it?
John Kerry -- the only candidate with the courage to take every position on every issue.
Hat tip, Southern Appeal.
Saturday, October 09, 2004
How 'bout dem Sooners?
Four more years! Four more years!
Okay, slack posting today and tomorrow -- it's OU-Texas weekend, so what do you expect?
None of this wimpy SEC conference crap -- this is for the Big-12 Championship and a national championship berth. My prediction? OU by 15.
Back on Monday.
Friday, October 08, 2004
And so it begins
And notice exactly WHO is pushing to break election laws?
That's right, anti-Bush guys.
This is going to be ugly. We must reform and strictly enforce election laws.
Thursday, October 07, 2004
Joel L. at Southern Appeal has an interesting note on election fraud. I posted the following in comments, then thought it would make a nice post here.
I have long worried about the abuse of election laws to undermine confidence in our system. Frankly, this is an area of law about which I am starting to educate myself, not only for personal edification and professional opportunity, but also to be able to offer assistance to counterbalance these types of attacks.
I have long believed our system, which has remained essentially unchanged for over a century, is in need of serious reform. My thoughts for reform have centered around better, more secure voter identification and ballot integrity.
I'd like to see a voter identification card that requires as much information and documentation to get as an American passport. The ideal card would have a photo identification, plus a thumbprint scan, and would be required by law before a voter could cast a vote for any candidate for federal office. Once swiped at the polling place, it would register that you had been given a ballot in that election.
For absentee ballots, you would have to appear with the ID at the county election supervisor in the county in which you resided. That supervisor would have the sole authority to request your home state provide an absentee ballot for you. Once you received the ballot, you would be required to mark your votes and seal the ballot in a manila return envelope. That envelope would be sealed by the same county election supervisor (or his proxy) and forwarded to your home state for counting.
Citizens overseas would be required to do the same thing, except they would be required to appear at the nearest American embassy or consulate.
Active duty military personnel deployed overseas would be required to undergo a similar process, only using their military identification and providing ballots to an appropriate military coordinator who would have the responsibility of forwarding the ballots to each soldier's home state.
Would that eliminate all voter fraud? No, but it would reduce it.
I also think we ought to be vigorously prosecuting those suspected of illegal voting or other types of election fraud. Those involved in the dual registration problems (New York and Florida) who cast ballots in both states should be prosecuted and stiffly punished. Involvement in election fraud should carry, in addition to any monetary fine or prison time, a lifetime ban on voting or holding any elected or appointed political position. Extreme? Maybe -- but undermining our very democracy by calling the results of elections into question merits the penalty.
The problem with voter fraud is that once you undermine faith in election results, you undermine people's reluctance to engage in or condone those acts (because everyone else is doing it). Swift and severe punishment, combined with very tight restrictions on access to the polls, would serve to shore up our system.
This is why we must not become complacent. If it can be done once, it can be done multiple times.
Killer flu recreated in the lab
Scientists have shown that tiny changes to modern flu viruses could render them as deadly as the 1918 strain which killed millions.
A US team added two genes from a sample of the 1918 virus to a modern strain known to have no effect on mice.
Animals exposed to this composite were dying within days of symptoms similar to those found in human victims of the 1918 pandemic.
He said: "It is not a big difference at all between a virus that kills 15M people and one that does not kill anyone at all.
The 1918 "Spanish" flu pandemic is estimated to have infected up to one billion people - half the world's population at the time.
The virus killed more people than any other single outbreak of disease, surpassing even the Black Death of the Middle Ages.
Although it probably originated in the Far East, it was dubbed "Spanish" flu because the press in Spain - not being involved in World War I - were the first to report extensively on its impact.
The virus caused three waves of disease. The second of these, between September and December 1918, resulting in the heaviest loss of life.
It is thought that the virus may have played a role in ending World War I as soldiers were too sick to fight, and by that stage more men on both sides died of flu than were killed by weapons.
Although most people who were infected with the virus recovered within a week following bed rest, some died within 24 hours of infection.
In most fictional accounts of germ warfare, the nasty virus is something exotic -- Ebola or some other hemorrhagic fever virus mutated or modified to survive in colder climates. The bad thing about a killer flu virus is that it would not need any modification to survive in cooler climes.
The article notes that the work was done under "high security". That is of little comfort, however, given that the research could be performed by doctoral students in virology and genetics using equipment that has legitimate medical applications.
Am I worrying too much about this? Maybe. I hope I am. But when I think of my own family, my youngest daughter who has Down's syndrome and an already weak immune system; my father who has multiple complications from diabetes (he's had a total of over a dozen bypass surgeries, plus other heart and lung problems); my aging grandfather, who has severe lung problems (probably related to asbestos exposure); my aging grandmother, whose health has declined of late -- I think of these people and realize that they are particularly vulnerable to a "killer flu" virus.
Would such an epidemic destroy America? No, no more than crashing three airplanes into various buildings on September 11, 2001, brought down America. But that is not the goal of the Islamic fascists with whom we are dealing.
Killing as many infidels is one of their goals. I don't think they would hesitate to create and release such a bug if they believed it would (1) be untraceable; and (2) kill infidels, particularly Americans.
How hard would it be to infect several dedicated individuals, then send them off to places like London, Paris, Mexico City, New York, Tokyo, Adelaide, Berlin, Moscow, Beijing, etc.?
Given our border security, how hard would it be to send one group to Canada and one group to northern Mexico with instructions to cross the border into the United States in mid-November and make their way to shopping malls during the Christmas season?
Chilling to consider, and yet we ignore the risk at our peril.
Wednesday, October 06, 2004
ProfessorBainbridge is angry Cheney didn't take the opportunity to slam on Edwards. Good read, though I disagree somewhat with the Prof. Yes, Edwards IS part of the problem of overlitigation, but I believe Cheney chose not to take the obvious cheap shot. It's a judgment call, but Cheney probably made the right decision.
Tuesday, October 05, 2004
VP - Debate Observation:
How in the heck can Edwards say that no state has been forced to recognize a marriage from another state in the past 200 years? What about Loving v. Virginia (mixed race couple living in Virginia went to D.C. (okay, not a state, but close enough), got legally married there, then returned to Virginia and were prosecuted under miscegeny laws)?
Edwards is a slime. I'd vote against a ticket with him on it even if the other guy was Ronald Reagan.
And THAT'S saying something.
Michael Moore violates the Law
Apparently, Mikey forgot that buying votes is ILLEGAL!
I hope they will throw the book at him. I fear he will not.
Rodney Dangerfield is dead.
This is a loss for the comic community. Dangerfield was not only a great comic in his own right, he also gave a lot of great comedians their first chance at teh big time (like, for example, Sam Kinison).
Sigh. The greats are leaving us, one by one.
The Dallas Morning News has a great editorial about the Long John Silver's manager I discussed yesterday.
What is Kerry's "Global Test"? Take it and see how you do.
Of course, I failed it, horribly.
Hat tip, Southern Appeal.
Monday, October 04, 2004
Iowa lawyer takes oath from Baghdad
A special congratulations to this young lawyer. What a great way to start her legal career -- by serving her country.
If She Had Been From Chicago, There Wouldn't Be A Problem
A dead person urges voters to cast a ballot for Kerry? In the Chicagoland area, she would have been expected to cast a vote for the Democrat candidate on her own. The fact she was dead would not have been an acceptable excuse.
Why this election is so darned important on the home front:
USATODAY.com - Polygamy laws expose our own hypocrisy
Okay, all the conservatives who decried Lawrence v. Texas (Adobe.pdf document) as threatening, amongst other things, the very definition of marriage are vindicated.
True, it is but an editorial. That's how gay marriage started, too -- and it is a reality in Massachusetts now.
If John Kerry is elected, we'll lose rationality in the federal courts for a generation.
I bet somebody's embarassed by this. . .
or at least lonely and frustrated.
Long John Silver's, KFC, Pizza Hut and Taco Bell Just Lost My Patronage
I can't believe this. Here's the situation: Goblins come into fast food shop, pull guns, demand money. Manager with ten years experience gives goblins money. Goblins then order all employees to go to a room in the back. Manager (and, incidentally, father of six) grabs hammer on the way back and pops Goblin #1 on the head. Goblin #1 drops to the ground, then flees (with Goblin #2). The Goblins leave the money on the floor of the restaurant.
So, how is this manager (who probably just saved his own life as well as the lives of every one of his employees) rewarded by his grateful employer?
You heard me correctly: he's fired.
From the story:
The supervisor, 46, said his fears overwhelmed him, and for good reason.
"They had my three employees on the floor," said the Dallas father of six who had worked for Long John Silver's for 10 years. "I gave them the money, but the dude who's supposed to have the gun, he orders me into the back.
"The only thing I could think is he was going to kill all of us," the fired worker said.
He'd been robbed on the street 25 years ago. He had handed over his money and offered his watch, but the robber shot him anyway.
"I had a flashback, and I was panicking. I knew I had to do something. I had seen a hammer in the back, and I grabbed it."
A few days later, he was called in by his boss and fired.
"I cooperated. I gave them the money. But they said because I hit one of the robbers, I violated company policy."
And what, pray tell, is this asinine policy he supposedly broke?
Spokesman Rick Maynard said, "Our policy outlines the steps that should be taken to prevent putting customers or employees at risk, including directing employees not to attempt to disarm a robber."
In other words, company policy is to give the Goblins total control, even while they are herding people into a back room to do God knows what to them. We mustn't upset the Goblins, now, right? Just cooperate and trust in the Goblins' sense of humanity and decency.
You know, I like KFC and Long John Silvers. I have fond memories of eating at a Pizza Hut up in Terre Haute, IN, with my grandmother on summer visits.
I'll never eat at one of those restaurants again.
I can understand a policy that says 'give the money to the Goblins; don't pull a gun on them at the counter.' Who wants to turn the front of the restaurant into a shooting gallery?
But to fire somebody for resisting while he's being herded to the back?
Stupidity at it's finest.
If you are as outraged as I am, let the parent company know.
Saturday, October 02, 2004
How the EU rewards those that expose corruption.
Our enlightened betters on the far side of the pond; those stunning towers of wisdom John Kerry plans to give a veto over our national defense decisions; those paragons of virtue who know better than we have decided what to do with a whistleblower who exposed fraud and abuse in the EU Commission's accounting system: she will be fired sometime this month.
No wonder the Left loves them so much -- corruption favors itself, it would seem.
Nota Bene: Additional comments on the debate are forthcoming, but I have been having problems with the laptop (again) last night and today, so it might be tomorrow afternoon before anything else happens.