Wednesday, June 29, 2005

if Ken Johnson says it--it must be true

The pharmaceutical industry is criticizing Cruise as well. Ken Johnson, senior vice president of Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America, said, “Actors should act, and highly skilled psychiatrists should treat patients. Cruise’s pronouncements fly in the face of science and effective treatment of a growing number of Americans who depend on medicines to lead normal, productive lives.”

Remember I said Cruise is getting crazier and crazier.....I don't think that he was that far off base when he called psychiatry a pseudo science--just look at how everyone that profits from that industry have denounced him. Let's see--so far the psychiatrist have taken offense, the Big Drug companies are shocked--shocked that someone would question the effectiveness of their drugs, and even Congress has pronounced their "concern."

I mean I do think there are people with mental illnesses, they are too screwed up to function in our society, but the mental health practitioners are on the take here. They have a vested interest in showing the world how important it is that they "scientifically" diagnose why Jimmy is eating dog food, humping the couch and peeing on the floor. (I bet if we ask the drug companies they might recommend something that would prevent the canine behavior)

the lines are drawn

Is there anyone out there who is still persuadable?

I mean--is there anyone who hasn't decided for sure how they feel about the war on terror, (In Iraq, Afghanistan, or anywhere else...) notice I say "feel" because that is the most important thing. No one has to justify, support or defend a logical and rational argument for or against anything: it is all about how we "feel" about the issues.

Come to think of it--is there anyone out there who holds a belief to be true, studies and learns more about it, and then changes their mind? I haven't seen it much.

We are all kings...each of us with equally valid opinions, right? So what if I know nothing about the subject at hand, I "feel" like I am right...so I must be. So what if every evidenciary indication reveals my opinions to be wrong, I "feel" like I am right. Besides, truth is just a construct, "one man's terrorist is another man's freedom fighter...."


I find that I enjoy the President's speeches much more if I read them. Some of his "tics" can be grating, and even as a supporter I flinch occasionally at the delivery so I can only imagine what kind of psychological nightmare that an avowed Bush basher goes through while listening and watching.
Having said that, I would highly recommend reading the speech:

I would agree with Andy McCarthy, who responded--"It was good to hear the commander-in-chief remind people that this is still the war against terror. Specifically, against Islamo-fascists who slaughtered 3000 Americans on September 11, 2001. Who spent the eight years before those atrocities murdering and promising to murder Americans — as their leader put it in 1998, all Americans, including civilians, anywhere in the world where they could be found.
It is not the war for democratization. It is not the war for stability. Democratization and stability are not unimportant. They are among a host of developments that could help defeat the enemy.
But they are not the primary goal of this war, which is to destroy the network of Islamic militants who declared war against the United States when they bombed the World Trade Center on February 26, 1993, and finally jarred us into an appropriate response when they demolished that complex, struck the Pentagon, and killed 3000 of us on September 11, 2001.
That is why we are in Iraq.
On September 12, 2001, no one in America cared about whether there would be enough Sunni participation in a fledgling Iraqi democracy if Saddam were ever toppled. No one in lower Manhattan cared whether the electricity would work in Baghdad, or whether Muqtada al-Sadr’s Shiite militia could be coaxed into a political process. They cared about smashing terrorists and the states that supported them for the purpose of promoting American national security.
Saddam Hussein’s regime was a crucial part of that response because it was a safety net for al Qaeda. A place where terror attacks against the United States and the West were planned. A place where Saddam’s intelligence service aided and abetted al Qaeda terrorists planning operations. A place where terrorists could hide safely between attacks. A place where terrorists could lick their wounds. A place where committed terrorists could receive vital training in weapons construction and paramilitary tactics. In short, a platform of precisely the type without which an international terror network cannot succeed.
The president should know he hit the sweet spot during his Fort Bragg speech because all the right people are angry. The New York Times, with predictable disingenuousness, is railing this morning that the 9/11 references in the speech are out of bounds because Iraq had “nothing whatsoever to do with the terrorist attacks.” Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid and the tedious David Gergen, among others, are in Gergen’s words “offended” about use of the 9/11 “trump card.”
If the president is guilty of anything, it's not that he's dwelling on 9/11 enough. It's that the administration has not done a good enough job of probing and underscoring the nexus between the Saddam regime and al Qaeda. It is absolutely appropriate, it is vital, for him to stress that connection. This is still the war on terror, and Iraq, where the terrorists are still arrayed against us, remains a big part of that equation. "

Tuesday, June 28, 2005

you reap what you sow?

Weare, New Hampshire (PRWEB) Could a hotel be built on the land owned by Supreme Court Justice David H. Souter? A new ruling by the Supreme Court which was supported by Justice Souter himself itself might allow it. A private developer is seeking to use this very law to build a hotel on Souter's land.
Justice Souter's vote in the "Kelo vs. City of New London" decision allows city governments to take land from one private owner and give it to another if the government will generate greater tax revenue or other economic benefits when the land is developed by the new owner.
On Monday June 27, Logan Darrow Clements, faxed a request to Chip Meany the code enforcement officer of the Towne of Weare, New Hampshire seeking to start the application process to build a hotel on 34 Cilley Hill Road. This is the present location of Mr. Souter's home.
Clements, CEO of Freestar Media, LLC, points out that the City of Weare will certainly gain greater tax revenue and economic benefits with a hotel on 34 Cilley Hill Road than allowing Mr. Souter to own the land.The proposed development, called "The Lost Liberty Hotel" will feature the "Just Desserts Café" and include a museum, open to the public, featuring a permanent exhibit on the loss of freedom in America. Instead of a Gideon's Bible each guest will receive a free copy of Ayn Rand's novel "Atlas Shrugged."
Clements indicated that the hotel must be built on this particular piece of land because it is a unique site being the home of someone largely responsible for destroying property rights for all Americans.
"This is not a prank" said Clements, "The Towne of Weare has five people on the Board of Selectmen. If three of them vote to use the power of eminent domain to take this land from Mr. Souter we can begin our hotel development."
Clements' plan is to raise investment capital from wealthy pro-liberty investors and draw up architectural plans. These plans would then be used to raise investment capital for the project. Clements hopes that regular customers of the hotel might include supporters of the Institute For Justice and participants in the Free State Project among others.


So it turns out that minorities are not overrepresented among the caulaties in Iraq.

Just as statistics would suggest--they represent approximately the same percentage of casualties as they are proportionately represented in the total population.

ie, Hispanic or Latino is approx 12 % of the current US population---181 of the 1539 Iraq casualties are Hispanic. (11.39%) Same with Black or African American 175 or 11.01%.

I say this to point out that our all volunteer Armed forces "look like America." It isn't made up of any one group disproportionately, it is comprised of some of the best from every sub-group--think about it the next time Charlie Rangel or Al Sharpton cry out about racial inequality in the Armed forces. It is an affront to all of the 1589 who have perished.

I won't mention Vietnam, but the same was true then (even though the modern day mythology held that blacks were disproportionately represented among the war dead.) Again, exactly like the statistical laws of averages would suggest.

One more thing...the next time someone suggests that Iraq is another Vietnam--remember that 58,000 American soldiers died in Vietnam.

Monday, June 27, 2005

blogga blogga blogga

Do you think that some of the reason for the rise in popularity of blogs and blogging is due to people seeking out a diversity of opinion, or seeking to control the filter through which their news is delivered? Example—if I am a hard-core Democratic activist I may be more likely to go to Slate or The New Republic as well as all the democraticunderground-style blogs.
Like a kind of “rose colored glasses” I don’t mind my "news" being ideologically filtered if it is openly admitted. In fact, I prefer my news filtered by my own handpicked “trusted advisors.” For some people sorting out the middle east is too daunting a task, but if I trust Tom Friedman and I read what he says---he becomes my own personal news guy for foreign affairs. I think the real potential for establishing yourself as “the expert” on a particular issue, and then developing a following is one profitable direction that all this blogging will lead. Think Kim Komando for computers. Or locally think Sharon Keating for real estate.

Then again, it could just be that there are a lot of egomaniacal individuals with free access to a forum and an inflated sense of importance, desiring to chronicle every boneheaded idea they have in the vain hope that someone, somewhere will read it and feed their desire for approval.
Discuss among yourselves…


Do the multi-millionaire actors, actresses, performers, musicians, etc...not think it a little unseemly to have large swanky white tie and tiara parties to celebrate their involvement in trying to combat AIDS in Africa? "Sir Elton John" threw a party at his mansion complete with zebras greeting the guests as they arrive and men dressd in gorilla suits. (The whole point of Live8 is to bring attention to poverty and AIDS in Africa...is the best way to do that to sip champagne and eat caviar at a mansion of a flamboyantly homosexual englishman who earns millions playing old songs on the piano?)

It's like "The Game" says: how can people spend 30 million on an airplane when there is kids starving?

(I think that is my first "gangsta rap" reference on this blog----keeping it real)


When a cat is dropped, it always lands on its feet. And when toast is dropped, it always lands with the buttered side facing down. I propose to strap buttered toast to the back of a cat; the two will hover, spinning inches above the ground. With a giant buttered cat array, a high-speed monorail could easily link New York with Chicago.

Friday, June 24, 2005

reverse Robin Hood

"The question answered yesterday was: Can government profit by seizing the property of people of modest means and giving it to wealthy people who can pay more taxes than can be extracted from the original owners? The court answered yes... During oral arguments in February, Justice Antonin Scalia distilled the essence of New London's brazen claim: 'You can take from A and give to B if B pays more taxes?... That is the logic of the opinion written by Justice John Paul Stevens and joined by justices Anthony Kennedy, David Souter, Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Stephen Breyer" -- Washington Post columnist George Will, writing on yesterday's Supreme Court ruling upholding a city's right to seize private property for the benefit of a private developer.

Is the constitution that difficult to understand? These folks went to good schools, presumably they read at a high level, how is it that they cannot interpret something that is so clearly written?
No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a Grand Jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the Militia, when in actual service in time of War or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offence to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.


Tom Cruise gets weirder every day.
His exchange on the "Today Show" with Matt Lauer was a new peak for his bizarre behavior.

I am not sure if he is insane, or brainwashed. Is he an ignorant mouthpiece for a corrupt and intellectually bankrupt organization? Or just cookoo? It would be hard to keep your feet planted when you make millions of dollars for being you, you spend more than 20 years being adored by millions of people and probably being catered to on a level that is impossible to imagine. I am sure most people would lose their bearings a bit.

Thursday, June 23, 2005

just sitting here, stroking my ego

I am pretty excited--- a friend and colleague, has set up a link on his blog that links you to my blog, and in my little world--that's big news.

I hereby promise to add more stuff this weekend (when I can really put some thought and effort into it) to put some pix and links up.

By the way, his blog is excellent, quirky, and personal www.smays.com

If you have taken the time to read this, I recommend taking a minute to check it out.

smack down

From one of my friends in the military--he said it is good to see those in the media (on both sides) adamantly support the troops and here is an example of it, but be warned--it is a fox news clip--so depending on your point of view it is either fair and balanced, or right wing propaganda direct from Karl Rove's marching orders.

> <http://www.filecabi.net/v.php?file=MichaelCrook.wmv>

"Support the troops"

I may be wrong, maybe I should ask some troops? But to me, when someone says they support the troops but disagree with the conflict in which the troops are deployed, then that is kind of a back handed support.
I mean, "support the troops" is kind of vague, what are we talking about? If "I support the troops" means "I don't want them to get killed", then that is not exactly a compassionate position, is it? I mean that should probably be universally adoptable?
I have seen lots of those signs that say, "support our troops, bring them home" and I think....wait a minute-who could disagree with that? I mean, I have had friends deployed and I sure wanted them to come home, as soon as possible, safely. I believe that the job they were called to do is important, and necessary, and I want them to go do it, and come home safe.
I believe that Senator Dick Durbin would claim until he's blue in the face that he supports our troops and yet he said this: "If I read this to you and did not tell you that it was an FBI agent describing what Americans had done to prisoners in their control, you would most certainly believe this must have been done by Nazis, Soviets in their gulags, or some mad regime--Pol Pot or others--that had no concern for human beings. Sadly, that is not the case. This was the action of Americans in the treatment of their prisoners."

So he supports the troops except when he is comparing them to the SS, or other war criminals.

But then he "apologized" by saying: "Some may believe that my remarks crossed the line," the Washington Post quotes the Senate's No. 2 Democrat as saying. "To them I extend my heartfelt apologies."
He also says, "This administration should apologize to the American people for abandoning the Geneva Conventions."
In truth, it isn't the Bush administration that is abandoning the Geneva Conventions. It is the critics, such as Amnesty International, who insist that terrorists should be protected under the conventions as if they were legitimate soldiers or civilians. The purpose of the Geneva Conventions is not to protect combatants' "human rights" but to spell out the rules of war, rules that impose reciprocal obligations on both sides of a conflict.
A central reason for those rules is to protect civilians by declaring that they are not legitimate targets of military action. Combatants who pose as civilians (i.e., do not wear uniforms) or who target civilians are spies and terrorists respectively and are not entitled to protection as prisoners of war. Indeed, Durbin acknowledged in his Senate speech that "the Geneva Conventions do not give POW status to terrorists."

Wednesday, June 22, 2005

for what it's worth

I did read the comment that very carefully (and thoughtfully) "cut and pasted" the talking points from Michael Moore's School of Raving Lunacy complete with mix and match out-of- context quotes and filled with all sorts of rhetorical fallacies. We've got "straw-men" we've got "Post hoc ergo propter hoc", we've got "causation vs correlation". But Wait! There's more if you act now on this very special offer, we will throw in a condescending blame-America-first attitude absolutely free! Supplies are limited, void where prohibited, not available in every state.

I am not sure how me saying "detaining enemy combatants is a necessary step" turned into a diatribe against the perceived and misquoted and intentionally misrepresented justifications for the war in Iraq, but hey, sometimes you say something and it triggers a different response in different people. For instance, I might start talking about midgets and someone could think I was talking about the Downing Street Memo, and even though I was speaking about short people, they hear something altogether different.
Either way, I am sure we all "support the troops," some of us do it by thanking them for doing an important and dangerous job and honoring their sacrifice, others of us support the troops by claiming that they were bamboozled and lied to and that they have sacrificed for nothing, that it is all a grand scheme that we have been manipulated into supporting by that evil genius (or is he a moron)....but hey---it's all the same.

peanut gallery

I love comments. Can you all read the comments like I can? That's silly, of course you can.

I will try to tone down the politics and focus more on first principles, because politics is just the practical game of competing ideas. If one can clearly define their own first principles then one can make a reasoned decision on darn near anything.
I understand that me ranting like a loon about Tom Delay this, or Bob Byrd that is not necessarily riveting stuff and I will from this point forward only write extremely interesting stuff that is custom taylored to everyone's individual preferences.
That's right--I am offering a fully customized blog experience...do you like midgets? I will write about midgets.
Maybe midgets aren't your thing? Well, don't read the part about midgets when I write it. Maybe you are into anthropomorphic snack foods? Like a potato chip that looks like Abraham Lincoln...I will write about that as well, and again if you are not interested in ASF's as I like to call them, don't read that part.

I feel better already, this thing is really gonna rock. OK Where do I start? I will be like Drew Carey on "Whose Line Is It" where he yells out into the audience, "give me the name of a broadway play and your favorite pizza topping." And then Wayne Brady sings an improv song about Fiddler on the Roof and Anchovies.

On second thought, I will probably just keep writing whatever strikes my fancy, and if anyone reads it and likes--cool, if not--- that's fine too.

I definitely need to change the title of this sucker, I'm thinking Anthropomorphic Snack Foods?
Tally Ho!

Tuesday, June 21, 2005

17 years

It was 17 years after WWII when Eichmann was executed for his crimes. That's 17 years that he was held without trial. (For anyone looking up Eichmann, see also "Auschwitz")

Like I said earlier, a little historical context is necessary when we look at Gitmo. We detain American citizens for years for all osrts of various non violent crimes. I believe we can make room for a few deranged homicidal enemy combatants.

The people we have picked up are not selling cookies door to door. In fact we have released and then later recaptured over a dozen detainees. I know it seems unsavory to say we have to hold them indefinitely, what about the rule of law, what about habeas corpus, what about speedy trial, etc....but these are not American citizens with the full legal protection that is granted to an Amercian citizen. These are "enemy combatants" who operate outside of the Geneva Conventions. (They don't wear uniforms, they intentionally target civilians, they hide among civilians....) We have held them for 3-4 years or less. We interrogate, we release some, we hold others.

The pragmatist comes out in me---what do the critics propose we do? We cannot shoot first and ask questions later. We cannot detain combatants for a "long" time. We have to give them special diets, time to pray, copies of their sacred texts....

Why bother picking them up in the first place? Wait a minute....that's the point, isn't it? We should just leave them alone, right? If we just play nice and don't offend the islamo-fascist he won't try to kill us.
This world is ruled by the agressive use of force. It always has been. America doesn't engage her enemies to conquer, or to aquire, she simply protects herself. (Hell, we even rebuild the place after demolishing it, creating something that is not a threat. see also Japan, Germany, the South, Mexico, Russia et al)

Equal opportunity bash

Let's be clear that there are plenty of old white priviledged men on both sides of the aisles that have a less than stellar race relations record.
The outrage is that when Trent Lott makes a stupid comment at a private party that had the taint of racially insensitive speech at best, he apologized (albeit poorly) on multiple occasions, and was summarily fired from his post as leader of the Senate Republicans. Compare and contrast Lott's record and recriminations for his perceived wrongs with Byrd's record and rewards for his ACTUAL wrongs and I find myself agreeing with Bob Dole's 1996 campaing theme: "Where's the outrage?"

Did I mention the guy was a Kleagle? He wrote letters to the "Imperial Wizard" and collected the dues to pay for the sheets and hoods? Bob Byrd has been elected Senate majority leader TWICE!!!?! Where's the outrage?
He has apologized, in a back handed way, for his affiliation, calling his time their an "albatross around my neck" but he also plays the game of--"it was a bad decision because it hurt me politically" instead of saying---"it was a bad decision because the Klan is the most hideous organization in the history of the US."
Is there any doubt that if a top ranking Republican had ties to the KKK 50 years ago he would not only be driven from office but he would be indicted, arraigned, arrested and prosecuted?

OK---I got it out of my system---

ebay scam? (bleg)

This is the second time this has happened: I have entertained the idea of buying a motorcycle. I had one in college, and now that I am older I can afford one that I would really like, so I have kept my eyes open for a good deal.
I found one on "motorcycletraderonline" dot com and the seller claims to be in the KC area, so I send an email because it is significantly under NADA value, and low miles and a clear title. The guy replies, "I am glad you are interested, I can ship it to you at no charge, but I am in Europe. The bike has American specs...." so anyway, it is fishy enough to cause me to drop the whole idea.
Then a few weeks later I see a Honda CBR 900rr that has been completelty customized, and should sell for around 7-8 grand and it has a buy it now price of 3000. So, my friend and I figured at the very least we could buy it, ride it for a couple of weeks and then sell it on consignment at a mutual friend's shop for a tidy profit. Same thing happens, we email the guy, we check the VIN, and sure enough the seller is in Europe. (Athens, Greece) He claims he can ship us the bike in 6 days and he will cover shipping. Again, this doesn't pass the smell test, but I have never had a problem with ebay before, so if anyone has ever heard of this type of scam--feel free to comment. I read and appreciate them. I figure he will want his payment terms to be cashier's check instead of paypal and then magically he gets the money but I never get a bike.

Monday, June 20, 2005

"Exalted Cyclops"

It is common knowledge among political junkies that the senior Democrat in the Senate, Robert Byrd from West Virginia has admitted his ties to the Klan in his younger years. This is not news.

What amazes me is that intelligent journalists from far left wing rags like the Seattle Post Intelligencer give him a pass. They even blame Republicans for trying to drag his "good" name through the mud.

It's sick: Here is an example--- It's a mistake he has paid for time and again, the only significant scandal ever attached to a man who grew up in Wolf Creek Hollow and who next June stands to become the longest-serving senator in U.S. history.
Even now, with the 2006 election more than 18 months away, Republicans are using it in their campaign to oust him. Byrd has not declared whether he will run again, and his book gives no hints.

So let me get this straight--a powerful white male racist bigot from the south-who has admitted his ties and leadership in the most notorious hate organization in the US--is running for re-election to the highest deliberative body in the US--and he has a cheering section in the Seatle Post Intelligencer? The guy was unanimously elected the "Exalted Cyclops" of his local chapter!!?!?! He served as "Kleagle" (that's like recruiting chairman) for years after he supposedly cut ties....and somehow he will be the longest serving senator in US history!?!?!

Oh wait...he's a Democrat, so it's OK. Never mind. I thought there was a reason to be outraged, but I must not have noticed the little "D" in front of his name. Did I mention that he opposed the Civil Rights act, going so far as to mount the longest filibuster in Senate history....oh and he voted against Thurgood Marshal, (first black Supreme Court justice) which he followed up by opposing and voting against Clarence Thomas (The second black Supreme Court Justice and justice Marshal's replacement). But he cut his ties...made amends, apologized, he's a good guy just made one little mistake.....

I couldn't make this stuff up.

Sunday, June 19, 2005

Father's day

I am going to spend some time with my boys....that's my gift.

Friday, June 17, 2005

Zen and the Art of Political Tolerance

Yesterday's items on assorted left-wing kookery brought an interesting comment from reader Brian Francoeur:
The anecdotes on the insane, frothing-at-the-mouth liberals venting their spleens made me chuckle. There's nobody more intolerant and narrow-minded than an tolerant and open-minded liberal, is there?
Here's something I've noticed recently: Once I embraced the idea within myself that I wasn't going to even try to be "open-minded and tolerant of all cultures and ideologies" I actually became more open minded and tolerant than I was before! Isn't that wild?
It's like I have this big sphere of stuff I'll tolerate, and the stuff I won't tolerate exists outside the sphere. Take liberals for example. I tolerate 'em, sure. As a matter of fact, I think they're probably pretty necessary for a healthy society (can't have day without night and all that). Plus, if there were no liberals, what would people bicker about? The designated hitter rule?
But once you get into the spittle-flecked ravings of Ward Churchill or the creepy "pedophilia is a healthy life choice!" attitude of Nambla, well, they exist outside of my tolerance sphere, and I feel perfectly free in either ignoring or heaping big piles of steaming disgust on them. Intolerance is more tolerant than tolerance! Funny old world, isn't it?
There's something wonderfully Zenlike about this.

isn't it ironic...

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - A Halliburton Co. unit will build a new $30 million detention facility and security fence at the U.S. naval base at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, where the United States is holding about 520 foreign terrorism suspects, the Defense Department announced on Thursday.

It actually brings a smile to my face...the coming caniption fits will be hilarious.

For the life of me I can't quite understand the problem. We catch bad guys on the battlefield, we hold on to them. I believe the senior Senator from Arizona is familiar with this...having spent 5 years in considerably worse circumstances, and I don't think the NVA followed the Geneva Conventions. Nick Berg was captured and fed fruits and dates and given time to pray everyday, too, right? (oh yeah.....well we can't expect the jihadist to not cut off an infidels head now can we?)
What would those who want Gitmo closed down propose we do with enemy combatants? Smack their hands with a ruler and chastise them for being naughty?

Wednesday, June 15, 2005

a little context

There’s a lot I don’t understand about the current hysteria over our prison facility at Guantanamo Bay. At the top of the list is why no one has mentioned Louis Pepe or Mamdouh Mahmud Salim.
Salim, a reputed top lieutenant of Osama bin Laden, was being held at the Metropolitan Correctional Center, a high security federal jail in lower Manhattan. Pepe was a guard there. On November 1, 2000, Salim plunged a sharpened comb into Pepe’s left eye and three inches into his brain. Salim and a compatriot also beat Pepe savagely, in their effort to get the guard’s keys and orchestrate an escape for himself and two fellow terrorists awaiting trial. Believing Pepe was dead, the attackers used his own blood to paint a Christian cross on his torso. Pepe was an experienced correctional officer, a member of the elite MCC Enforcers Disturbance Control, and he weighed in at 300 pounds. He survived the attack with brain damage, crippling disabilities, and an unending stream of surgeries.
The reason Pepe and Salim are relevant should be obvious. There are good guys and bad guys in this story, and as much as it pains some to hear it, we are the good guys. We are not talking about confused teenagers caught up in events larger than themselves. We aren’t talking about mistaken identities. We’re talking about the cream of our enemy’s crop in the war on terror
---from Jonah Goldberg's June 15th syndicated column...


I am pretty lucky. I work for a company that provides ice cream every friday thorughout the summer...just because it's hot outside, and we all like ice cream. The ice cream truck pulls up and we all take a few minutes to go outside, order anything we like and stand around and enjoy it.

I have also managed to do two big things in the past few months which resulted in a significant reward for my efforts. It is good when you work hard, get results, and get compensated for them. I can see myself staying here for a long time.

Tuesday, June 14, 2005

not guilty

Now that Michael has been acquitted he will have time to go out and find the real molester.

I'd like to give the world a Coke

Metaphors are tricky things, dangerous in the wrong hands. Which leads us to Indra Nooyi, president and CFO of PepsiCo. In an address to the graduating class of Columbia Business School, Ms. Nooyi spun out an elaborate metaphor contending that the nations of the world resemble the fingers of a hand, with the U.S. being — can you guess? — the middle finger. Explained the lady: “This is how the rest of the world looks at the U.S. right now. Not as part of the hand . . . but instead scratching our nose and sending a far different signal.” Ah, the Ugly American! Blundering and insulting, the loose cannon among nations, stirring up strife and discord! We must be gentler, more sensitive — then they won’t hate us so much! But who, actually, hates us? Not, presumably, the untold millions who watch our movies and buy our soft drinks. Foreigners could, if they wished, stop watching and stop buying. A lot of European and Third World intellectuals hate us, we know, because their brains are so addled with crackpot ideologies as to make them useless for employment in modern commerce. Who else hates us? Just a few guilt-crazed wealthy elites like . . . well, like the president and CFO of PepsiCo.
--Hat tip to the June 20th edition of National Review, "The Week."

Monday, June 13, 2005

American jurisprudence

This is not exactly a "I remember where I was the day I heard...." moment, but apparently the King of Pop is to appear in court within one hour to hear the verdict.

If this guy walks I predict massive riots in the streets.....

just kidding, no one cares, and yet we are being force fed every detail of his trial, there is even a show on BET where actors (bad actors) play all of the roles of the real players in the trial and re-create each days events.....


Cedar Creek

I spent my weekend outdoors, sitting around campfires, sleeping under the stars, basically enjoying everything that nature has to offer in Mid-Mo.

Cedar Creek is a beautiful little creek, I would even call it a small river, and after a nice downpour like we had this weekend it becomes a raging muddy torrent with some surprisingly fast moving sections. All in all, an exciting adventure that I would recommend to anyone.

Friday, June 10, 2005

excellent weekend planned

I am taking my son's camping--should be awesome, they are just old enough to really enjoy the outdoors and quit whining.
I am taking a couple four-wheelers and a couple kayaks, it should be pretty memorable.

One of my friends at work, (I would say colleague but it feels too pretentious) gave me a chotchky this morning, it's a little metal duck that winds up and runs in circles. It's a metaphor for peddling furiously and going no where. (Like Sisyphus who was forced to push the rock up the hill only to have the stupid rock fall back to the bottom and start all over again.)
Either way--it was a nice gift--makes me feel like I am beginning to be a permanent fixture here.

Wednesday, June 08, 2005

real estate

I have been considering buying investment property for about the past 5 years, but I normally talk myself out of it with the traditional excuses...too much time, effort, money, risk, etc...

Suddenly-it has occurred to me again that I might enjoy it, I enjoy working with my hands, I enjoy the idea of buying something, taking a risk and trying to improve it, and then selling it for a reasonable profit.

So, I have scoped out a few properties, talked to my banker friend and expert, and I will see what happens.

Friday, June 03, 2005

Mr Goodwrench

I fixed one of my vehicles last night, I am pretty proud of myself...tore open the steering column and installed a new ignition starter switch. Saved myself some $$$.

Not bad for someone who is completely mechanically challenged. I make my living on the phone, very seldom do I have to work with my hands, other than to type or dial. There is definitely a satisfaction of taking something apart, fixing it and putting it back together.

Thursday, June 02, 2005

needs vs wants

I want a new car. I think a case could be made for me needing a new car, as my current one is not only a deathtrap (it's rated the worst vehicle by the insurance people that study these things) it is also terribly uncool (literally, the air conditioner is broken) and I am so tired of it.

I consider myself an outdoorsy guy--I hike and mountain bike and I even kayak. I should drive a vehicle that reflects me.

Then again, a car is just a metal box to get me to and from where I want to go-so maybe I should just find a cheap old toyota and move on to more important questions.....

Wednesday, June 01, 2005

deep throat

When I was a wee lad in high school journalism and the instructor was carefully indoctrinating us with the idea that the press is the only check on the power of the elected elite and they have a responsibility to "speak truth to power" (which is the most annoying phrase in circulation) one of the lessons we were supposed to inhale deeply was the mythic journalistic exploits of Woodward and Bernstein.
We read the book, we watched the movie, we attempted to land our own stories about government corruption at any level.

At this point the MSM is reliving its glory days, when two of their own took down a sitting president instead and the word "journalist" conjured up images of Robert Redford and Dustin Hoffman playing Woodward and Bernstein.

What does the word "journalist" conjure up today?