September 30, 2006
Easy to Scoop a Book as Woodard's Tome Proves
The NY Times and the NY Daily News embarrassed the Washington Post by scooping them about portions of Bob Woodward new book State of Denial. How did the Times get a hold of a book that won't be on sale until next week? Easy, they went to a bookstore and got someone to break the strict-on-sale date. At my bookstore copies of Woodard's book were in for days. I could have cut open a box, bought one, and scooped everyone. Of course I would have lost my job. It's even possible the stores didn't think they did anything wrong. Bookstores like most retail outlets is staffed by lots of part-timers. It's hard for managers to communicate all the fine points to all employees. Some bookseller might have just saw a pile of State of Denial in the backroom and thought it would be nice to stock them on the book floor. Stuff like that happens.
Other than plot points to the next Harry Potter novel it's not hard to get a scoop on a book that has been printed and shipped to stores.
"Post Rushes Woodward Story After Other Papers Scoop It"
September 29, 2006
WSJ Poll: Doyle's Lead Slims Tremendously
Zogby's poll for the Wall Street Journal, a combined online and phone poll, finds Gov. Jim Doyle with only a 1.3% lead over Rep. Mark Green.
And to really make the Wisconsin GOP ask themselves, "What if we actually found someone to challenge Sen. Herb Kohl?" the poll finds Kohl with only a 13.3% lead over Robert Gerald Lorge.
UPDATE: Even with this poll the overall average has Doyle with a 5% lead over Green. Doyle's numbers have started taking a nosedive.
Good Riddance to Sicko Congressman
The hot, steamy news out of D.C. is Congressman Mark Foley resigning from his seat when news got out about sexually explicit instant messages [PDF] between him and a teenager.
You have to be very twisted to converse like he did and think you'd never get caught. It's even more twisted knowing Foley worked to pass laws to protect children from online predators.
Here's what we learned: 1.) if you have sick, twisted sexual fantasies, keep them to yourself or get professional help, but don't get elected to Congress; 2.) make sure you know how to delete potentially problematic IM conversations to prevent future embarrassment; 3.) to parents, the online sicko stalking your child might be a Congressman.
"Mark Foley's "Outreach" To Youths At Risk Of Being Hot"
"US Rep. Mark Foley Resigns From Congress"
"The Sexually Explicit Internet Messages That Led to Fla. Rep. Foley's Resignation"
Odd Poll in Governor's Race
Until I see corroborating numbers I'm discounting the Wisconsin Policy Research Institute's poll that has Gov. Doyle with a 5% lead over Rep. Mark Green. The overall spread seems right, but the poll says Green is leading in Democratic stronghold Milwaukee, and Doyle leads Green by 11% in Green Bay Green's backyard. If the numbers are accurate this will be one wild race with more unpredictabilities.
"Governor's Race Poll Contains Surprises"
Charlie's Show Prep #170
September 28, 2006
More Mark Green Ads on YouTube
If you watch plenty of Wisconsin television you have probably already seen these two Mark Green ads. My tv watching amounts to sports and neither Green nor Doyle are buying ad time during Brewers games. So for those with similar viewing habits here's two good Green ads now on YouTube:
Mark Green really needs your help to make sure these ads get as much play as possible. Please donate to his campaign.
Screech Sex Tape
Is this Screech's latest way to "save his house?"
He may have played nerdy eighth-grader Samuel (Screech) Powers in the sitcom "Saved by the Bell." But former TV geek Dustin Diamond can now take his place with Colin Farrell, Tommy Lee and Kid Rock as the star of his very own sex tape.
Screech's manager thinks the tape might help his career saying, "Dustin has been trying to escape the Screech typecast. So this may help me get more bookings."
We should have bought more t-shirts.
"Porn Star's Name May Ring a 'Bell'" [via Ace]
Charlie's Show Prep #169
September 27, 2006
I have a fondness for green. It feels different than reds and blues. It can be bright green or it can get more earthy. I like green, but I'm not a green freak who drives a green car, paints his bedroom three shades of green, or has an assortment of Green Bay Packers jerseys in his closet--uh nix that last part. What set me off was Sony's Vaio C series of notebook computers. I'm digging the "spring green" or "natural green" for those European readers.
The computer is slim and small with a 13.3 inch screen. I've been drooling over Dell's Inspirion 710m for a while. I could get a mighty mobile weblogging machine in a spiffy color... IF I had $1350 bucks lying around. Anyone want to make a donation to the TAM Spring Green Notebook fund? Someone? Anyone? Bueler? Someone leave at tip anyway. It's been so long I've forgotten to forget to say thank you to generous folk.
"Sony's Vaio C Series of 13.3-Inchers"
Insensitive Morons at the NY Post
We only have one planet. We're stuck with each other. Jews are stuck with Muslims who are both stuck with Christians, Hindus, athiests, and a host of other faiths. Blacks are stuck with whites who are stuck with Asian yadda, yadda, yadda. Respecting one's boundaries, both physical, economic, emotional, and spiritual are needed or society breaks down into chaos. It's bad enough for some sick bastard to send Lefty looney toon Keith Olberman an envelope filled with white powder. I hope that creature is soon arrested. To make things worse the NY Post's gossip section, Page Six, mocked Olberman for calling 911 for help. (Here's Olberman's account.) I wonder what employees of the Post would do if they were sent such a threatening piece of mail. Wait, we already know because it happened five years ago:
A letter mailed to the New York Post has tested positive for anthrax and is similar to anthrax-laced letters sent to NBC news anchor Tom Brokaw and Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle, police said late yesterday.
You can be pretty sure the Post people weren't the most cool and calm as they called the police.
Page Six's Paula Froelich took gossip to a new low. She was cruel and heartless. For shame! She better be working on that apology.
"Why Doesn't Page Six Take A Big Whiff Itself?"
"Aren't Death Threats Just Hilarious"
Report: Terrell Owen Tried Suicide
A Dallas television station reports Cowboys wide receiver Terrell Owens is in the hospital because of an attempted suicide:
Flamboyant Dallas Cowboys receiver Terrell Owens attempted suicide by overdosing on pain medication, even putting two more pills into his mouth after fire rescue personnel arrived, The Associated Press reported Wednesday citing a police report.
If true it shows that even superstars with money and fame can have a hole in their soul.
In the same ESPN story is an odd Bill Parcell's quote about injured wideout Terry Glenn:
On Tuesday, the Cowboys also practiced without tight end Jason Witten, whose wife was having a baby. Wide receiver Terry Glenn practiced, albeit with several stitches in his thumb.
Was this another example of Parcell's sarcasm? What a strange detail to reveal. Late night comedians will have a field day with this.
"Police Report: Owens Hospitalized after Suicide Attempt"
UPDATE: I guess T.O. wasn't feeling too down in the dumps. He says his painkilers combined with suplaments caused a bad reaction:
As if to prove he's doing fine, Owens went from the hospital to catching passes from quarterback Drew Bledsoe within two hours, then proclaimed himself "very capable of going out there and playing on Sunday" — despite whatever happened Tuesday night and a broken right hand.
Owens said he was "kind of out of it" which would explain his behavior in the police report.
But then we have T.O.'s publicist who turns the incident into an attack on the football player:
Etheredge also appeared at Owens' news conference, saying she "did not take anything out of his mouth" and that it was unfair for anyone to think Owens would kill himself.
Wrong, Ms. Etheredge. When the media gets a police report that says an NFL player attempted suicide that's news. If the report had been about the third-string Dallas wide receiver instead of Owens it would have been news. Since Owens is one of the most colorful characters in the NFL that makes it a story Drudge links to and ESPN puts on their front page. And really, T.O. doesn't shy away from attention. He would have felt insulted if he was taken to the emergency ward and no one reported on it.
"Owens Denies He Tried to Kill Himself"
Dow Jones Index Near All-Time High
An economic story that's flown under the radar is the rise of the stock market to near-record heights. It's almost come back from the Internet stock-charged bubble that burst in 2000:
The Dow Jones industrial average is just 53.59 points away from its all-time high close, going into today's trading. In pre-market trading, Dow Jones futures are up 3 points, S&P 500 futures rose 0.5 of a point, and Nasdaq futures rose 2.8 points.
When Bill Clinton was President I remember his administration touting new stock market high after new stock market high as a sign of their success in managing the economy. I think President Bush and the gang should do a little crowing of their own.
"Dow Just 53.59 from All-Time High Close"
Joseph Sobran to Speak in Milwaukee Thursday
Last Saturday, James Widgerson posted on an up-coming speech by Joesph Sobran to the Wisconsin Forum. His speech will be about the "hijacking of conservatism." Sobran, once a paleo-conservative or paleo-libertarian now an anarchist, was forced to resign from National Review because of his unhealthy obsession with Israel and the role of Jews in American politics. In 1991, William F. Buckley wrote about how he attempted to keep Sobran from letting his obession harm his career and reputation.
From Sobran's own words about "Jewish power," the "wrath of Jewish advertisers," the "Jewish-Zionist powers that be in the United States," and his many uses of the pejorative "Zionist" (sounding like Palastinian propaganda) it's clear to me he has a dislike of Jews as a group. Ergo it's not a stretch to call Sobran an anti-Semite even though he was in awe of particular Jews like Murray Rothbard. What's also disturbing is his paranoia. Richard John Neuhaus quotes Sobran:
The older I get, the more I am impressed by this pervasive fear of the Jews-or rather, pervasive in some critical power centers, unfelt in other places. It is a huge factor, invisible and incalculable, in American culture and politics.
Sobran's obsession (one he denies) with Jews has no place in a conservatism where people are treated as individuals and not abstracted into ethnic groups with certain exceptions.
What should be done? What I can do is simply not attend the speech, and I encourage no one else to attend. Also, airing my opinion via this weblog is a constructive action. While the Wisconsin Forum has been around for decades and has an admirable committment "to speaking on behalf of the principles of liberty" I am very disappointed in their selection of Sobran. The organization's reputation has suffered in my eyes. Much work will be needed to be done to improve it.
September 26, 2006
Newsweek Chooses to Sell Book Instead of News with Cover
When seeing this graphic at Outside the Beltway I started singing "One of these things is not like the other...."
It just so happens famed photographer Annie Leibovitz is coming out with a new collection of her photos called A Photographer's Life: 1990-2005. Newsweek is obviously involved in promoting the book. Thus the Taliban get bumped for a celebrity photographer for U.S. readers. That's some amazing P.R. firm Leibovitz has to get actual news bumped off the cover of a national newsweekly.
"Taliban vs. Annie Leibovitz"
Bush Signs Transparency Bill
Today, President Bush signed the Funding Accountability and Transparency Act of 2006 which, to use President Bush's words, will "create a website that will list the federal government's grants and contracts." Webloggers will love sifting through that looking for waste and possible corruption. Webloggers like Ace, N.Z. Bear, Mary Katherine Ham and others worked hard to get this legislation past. They weren't forgotten because some of them were invited to the signing ceremony. Even though I wasn't writing anything on it I was still rooting for them. Congratulations all.
"Bloggers Gather at White House for Pork Bill Signing"
"President Bush Signs Spending Transparency Bill"
Offering Facebook Invites
Facebook has opened itself up to the non-college student and select workplace world. I signed up but I know no one in the Milwaukee, WI group. It's because I'm older than your typical Facebook user. If you want an invite send me an e-mail (sean--at--theamericanmind--dot--com) or leave a comment with your e-mail address.
And if you want a Gmail account I can send you one of those too.
"Facebook Opens Registration to All"
Intel Shows off 80 Core Prototype
Moore's Law continues. Instead of the number of transistors doubling on microchips every one to two years Intel looks to double the number of microprocessors periodically:
But the ultimate goal, as envisioned by Intel's terascale research prototype, is to enable a trillion floating-point operations per second--a teraflop--on a single chip. Ten years ago, the ASCI Red supercomputer at Sandia National Laboratories became the first supercomputer to deliver 1 teraflop using 4,510 computing nodes.
At this rate a Matrix-style shunt into the back of one's brain isn't too far off. And to pick another movie metaphor, will these powerful computers become sentient and strike back at their human "oppressors?"
"Intel Pledges 80 Cores in Five Years"
Saddam Ejected from Trial Again
The judge in Saddam's genocide trial tossed out the chief defendent for the third straight hearing:
New chief judge Mohammed al-Ureybi, who had thrown Saddam out of the two previous hearings he has chaired in the past week, opened Tuesday's hearing with a lecture to Saddam to behave.
And I thought the O.J. Simpson trial was wild and wacky.
"Saddam, Aides Ejected from Genocide Trial"
Charlie's Show Prep #168
September 25, 2006
British Wack al-Qaeda Bombmaker
Omar al-Farouq, who escaped from an Afghan prison in 2005, was killed by British troops in Basra, Iraq:
Burbridge said he could not comment on whether it was the same man who allegedly led al-Qaida's Southeast Asia operations, citing British policy not allowing him to link an individual to a specific organization.
Al-Farouq's wife should now accept he was indeed a terrorist:
In Indonesia last November, al-Farouq's wife said the U.S. government should have put her husband on trial.
Instead he went around Southeast and Central Asia planning attacks on the U.S.
This gives more validity to the "flypaper" theory of the Iraq War. Security consultant Ken Conboy said, "He's Iraqi after all. If he's not hiding out (in Afghanistan or Pakistan), he's probably headed to Iraq to join the fight there." (Emphaisis mine.)
"British Forces Kill Leading Terrorist"
Vice President Raises Big Bucks for Green and GOP
Vice President Dick Cheney came to Milwaukee to raise $150,000 for Mark Green and Wisconsin Republicans. That should help make up for losing in court to a Jim Doyle-appointed judge.
"Cheney Visits Milwaukee"
Mark Green Hits Back at Doyle
Many of us Mark Green supporters have been waiting for him to strike back at Jim Doyle's constant barrage of attack ads. With today's ruling against him in liberal Dane County by a Doyle-appointed judge he has to know the rules of the game are being rigged by his opponents. Now, Green has struck back. I hope this is just the beginning. The next ad should feature one Georgia Thompson who's going to federal prison for rigging a state travel contract toward a big Doyle contributor.
The Green campaign will move the questioned $467,844 into a separate account leaving Jim Doyle with that much more of a financial advantage. Please donate to Mark Green. Wisconsin doesn't deserve four more years of Doyle's ethical treachery.
Charlie's Show Prep #167
September 24, 2006
Washington Post on Chavez's Hot Air
Many, including me, paid more attention to what Hugo Chavez said last week (and what book he hawked) at the U.N. than how he's leading Venezuela especially its oil industry. Thankfully the Washington Post editorial board points out Chavez's ineptitude:
Since Mr. Chávez took power seven years ago, Venezuela has mismanaged its oil so disastrously that production may have fallen by almost half, according to the estimates of outsiders, reducing global oil supply by a bit more than 1 percent. Along with natural disasters and Nigerian rebels, Mr. Chávez's ineptitude has contributed to high energy prices.
"Hurricane Chávez" [via Betsy's Page]
September 23, 2006
Osama bin Laden: Dead and Alive
The brief hope that Osama bin Laden was dead (and by a "water-born" illness no less) cheered me up this rainy Saturday. But that's not the case according to Pakistani intelligence.
"Captured and Dead/Sick Savage Report"
Obsessing over Numbers
How many Bush-bashing, Leftist shibboleths can one reporter put into an "objective" news story? Count along with we go through the Associated Press' Calvin Woodward:
Now the death toll is 9/11 times two. U.S. military deaths from Iraq and Afghanistan now surpass those of the most devastating terrorist attack in America's history, the trigger for what came next.
I was waiting for this number to come up. For some reason Woodward doesn't bother to explain what 2,974 battlefield dead has to do with anything. The only thing interesting about that number is it provided Woodward a reason to write his anti-war "news" story.
Historians note that this grim accounting is not how the success or failure of warfare is measured, and that the reasons for conflict are broader than what served as the spark.
The only ones obsessing over body count numbers has been a sensationalist MSM and Bush-bashing, war protesters who wish they lived in a world where we could sing "Kumbaya" with Osama bin Laden and ask him nicely not to attack us again.
While each American death in the Islamist War is awful all of us must stay focused on the goal: defeat the enemy and secure the nation from future attacks. Many have already died, and many more will perish in this mission. Afghanistan and Iraq have been two places, and expect other places where the U.S. military will extend its sword in defense of the homeland. War is hell, yet we shouldn't shudder from the fight because of a body count.
Woodward is so obsessed with numbers so I'll give him a more important one. The number of Islamist terrorist attacks since Sep. 11, 2001: zero*.
[UPDATE: I made a mistake. I meant the number of Islamist attack on U.S. soil since Sep. 11. My apologies.]
Do you think President Roosevelt cared when the number of Americans killed in World War II equaled the number dead at Pearl Harbor? I doubt it. He was too busy commanding conflicts on both sides of the world. Did it matter to the Founding Fathers that the deaths at Lexington and Concord were greater than that of the Boston Massacre? No, they were a little busy organizing a resistance to the British.
"There's never a good war but if the war's going well and the overall mission remains powerful, these numbers are not what people are focusing on," said Julian Zelizer, a political historian at Boston University. "If this becomes the subject, then something's gone wrong."
Hey Woodward, casualties have also been "remarkably light by any historical standard" in Iraq too. Before the war in 2003 I fully expected 10,000 troops to die. I thought Saddam's vaunted Republican Guard would put up a tougher fight, and chemical weapons--that the whole world thought Iraq had--would produce grotesque injuries and deaths. Despite my fears of so many deaths I firmly supported the invasion because I thought the cause was true. Thankfully, the invasion went well. The occupation and Iraq's rebuilding has been the real challenge.
The Pentagon reports 56 military deaths and one civilian Defense Department death in other parts of the world from Operation Enduring Freedom, the anti-terrorism war distinct from Iraq.
Wouldn't it be better to lump these tragic deaths to Iraq's liberation and ascension into civilization? No, because Woodward wants to pull at his readers heartstrings. If anyone should be blamed for those deaths it's the resistance who reject a democratic regime.
Among the latest U.S. deaths identified by the armed forces:
These are all patriots who deserve nothing but gratitude.
A new study on the war dead and where they come from suggests that the notion of "rich man's war, poor man's fight" has become a little truer over time.
Now, we get into Woodward's bit of class warfare. He mentions the income distributions of casualties in a number of wars but "forgets" to note that there's no longer a draft. We have a voluntary armed forces. Men and women are free to enlist and now renew their enlistment when their service time in done. But that important piece of information would unravel Woodward's "rich man's war, poor man's fight" canard.
Eye-for-an-eye vengeance was not the sole motivator for what happened after the 2001 attacks any more than Pearl Harbor alone was responsible for all that followed. But Pearl Harbor caught the U.S. in the middle of mobilization, debate, rising tensions with looming enemies and a European war already in progress. Historians doubt anyone paid much attention to sad milestones once America threw itself into the fight.Yes, because we don't have an MSM and Bush-bashing Left obsessed with making President Bush look bad instead of seeking victory over our enemies.
In contrast, the United States had no imminent war intentions against anyone on Sept. 10, 2001. One bloody day later, it did.
To Calvin Woodward and those Bush-bashing, anti-war protesters I give you this from Victor Davis Hanson:
Today I finish the last class of a five-week course I taught this late summer at Hillsdale College on World War II. What is striking is the abrupt end of the war, whose last months nevertheless saw the worst American casualties in Europe of the entire struggle. 10,677 of our soldiers died in April 1945 alone, just a few days before the collapse of the Nazi regime— about the same number lost a year earlier during the month of June in the 1944 landings at Normandy and the slogging in the Hedgerows. Okinawa saw our worst casualties on the ground in the Pacific—and was declared secure only 6 weeks before the Japanese surrender. 1945 was far bloodier than 1939, a reminder that in the midst of a war daily losses are not necessarily a barometer of how close or far away is the end of the carnage. Ask the Red Army for whom the final siege of Berlin—361, 367 Russian and Polish soldiers lost—may have been their worst single battle of their entire war, itself characterized by killing on a scale unimaginable in the West.
"War Price on U.S. Lives Equal to 9/11"
*Since we don't know who was responsible for the anthrax attacks soon after Sep. 11 I don't count that. Even if it is discovered to be al Qaeda's or some other terrorist group's doing I will include that with Sep. 11 since the nation was only in the beginnings of responding to the Islamist threat.
September 22, 2006
Wait a While for Final Harry Potter Book
Harry Potter fans, I have to give you some bad news. It will be a while before the final Harry Potter book. J.K. Rowling said, "I'm not close to finishing it."
"Rowling Says Seventh Harry Potter Book 'Not Close to Being Finished"
Charlie's Show Prep #166
September 21, 2006
More on Doyle's Rigging of the State Elections Board
There has been plenty of electrons spilled on the news that a Gov. Jim Doyle lawyer conspired with members of the State Elections Board to stick it to Rep. Mark Green. Patrick at Badger Blogger has an extensive round-up. So check him out for breadth. I'll highlight some thoughts I found interesting:
Sen. Harkin Doesn't Bash Chavez
Sen. Tom Harkin (D-IA) can "understand" Hugo Chavez's "frustration" with the U.S. That's far from Reps. Rangel's and Pelosi's denunciations of the Venezuelan autocrat. He then turned a question about Chavez into your standard criticism of President Bush's foreign policy.
"Harkin Defends Venezuelan President's U.N. Speech against Bush"
Democrats Bash Chavez
I know they're doing it because elections are about six weeks away still I'm please Reps. Charles Rangel and Nancy Pelosi ripped Hugo Chavez:
"I just want to make it abundantly clear to Hugo Chavez or any other president - don't come to the United States and think because we have problems with our president that any foreigner can come to our country and not think that Americans do not feel offended when you offend our Chief of State," Rangel said.
It's good to know political expediency still trumps Bush Derangement Syndrome in Democratic leaders.
Too bad the same can't be said for the wackos at Democratic Underground. Here are some good comments on Rangel's remarks:
"Chavez Catches Hell For 'Devil' Slam"
"Rangel and Pelosi Denounce Chavez "Devil" Comments"
"Rangel to Chavez: Shut Up"
"Video: Rangel Warns Chavez Not to Attack “My President”; Update: Gratuitous DU Thread Added"
Bad Timing of Doyle's "Ethics" Ad
Ask Me Later's Cantankerous noticed Gov. Doyle's great timing. Yesterday, his campaign released a new ad [PDF] bashing Rep. Mark Green for keeping $468,000 in PAC donations that were legal until Doyle got his cronies on the State Elections Board to retroactively declare them illegal.
In the ad Doyle says he won't stop cleaning up corruption. Will he be asking for Carl Holborn and Kerry Dwyer to step down from the board? Will Doyle campaign attorney Michael S. Maistelman be fired? Will Doyle's campaign pay for the Election Board's court costs since it's a being used as a political weapon against Green?
Doyle's Words vs. Facts
Badger Blogger's video sums up nicely the first Doyle-Green debate:
Charlie's Show Prep #165
Doyle's Lawyer Had Board Stick It to Green
We might as well toss aside the latest poll numbers. A new piece of data has entered the governor's race, and it's a doozy. Gov. Jim Doyle's campaign lawyer told Democratic members of the State Elections Board to retroactively declare some of Rep. Mark Green's PAC contribution illegal to stymie the Republican's campaign.
Attorney Michael S. Maistelman bluntly told Democratic Party members of the board he contacted why they should publicly sanction or punish the Green campaign, according to documents obtained by the Journal Sentinel under the state's open records law.
Now, those of us political junkies figured Doyle was behind the board's unfair ruling, but now the public knows how brazen Team Doyle was.
Wisconsinites strongly feel people should play fair. We've learned again that Gov. Doyle doesn't care about fairness. He simply cares about winning re-election and advancing his liberal agenda. He trades state contracts for campaign contributions, lies about the state government's finances, labels his opponents as "extreme," over does it when talking about embryonic stem cells' medical potential, and now turns a bipartisan election board into a political weapon.
Wisconsin is at a point where serious people need to work together to solve the assortment of problems facing the state. With Rep. Mark Green we have a man who's laying out plans on education, taxes, and health care. With Gov. Doyle it's smear commercials and stacking the deck through cronies. Wisconsin deserves better than that.
UPDATE: To read Michael Maistelman e-mails you can download them here [PDF]
September 20, 2006
The Meat of Chavez's U.N. Speech
AcademicElephant at Redstate read past Hugo Chavez's "el diablo" remarks and found something quite disturbing:
Mr. Chavez deliberately used the same term as the President, and he deliberately used the first person plural. "We are extremists," he said in what was the true meat of the speech. Do not be blinded by the theatrics: Mr. Chavez today used the bully pulpit of the United Nations General Assembly to publicly embrace the terrorist forces of the Middle East, to claim common cause with them, and to suggest that they have a legitimate grievance against an intolerable aggressor. In this context, Mr. Chavez' apparently nutty remarks about the 9/11 attacks make perfect sense. He is rallying the likes of al Qaeda, Hezbollah and Hamas, and offering them justification, protection and support in the western hemisphere. More overtly and blatantly than any other world leader, he is hanging out his shingle as a state sponsor of terrorism. There have been rumors swirling recently of Islamic extremists finding haven in Venezuela. Mr. Chavez confirmed them today. Come to Venezuela, he might have well said. We can help you out. And look how much closer you'll be to Miami. Or to Washington and New York, for that matter.
It's time to find a few more large oil deposits to drive the price of crude down and (hopefully) take Chavez's regime down with it.
"About that Stench from Turtle Bay..."
Kidnapping Parents Didn't Approve of Baby's Black Father
We now learn that the Maine parents who kidnapped their daughter to take her to New York for an abortion are racists. They flew off the handle when they learned that not only was their unborn grandchild's father in jail, but he's *gasp* black. Heavin forbid you have a mulatto grandchild.
"Race May Be a Motive in Abortion Kidnap Case"
Big Payoff if Rightroots Goal is Met
If you haven't donated to the Rightroots campaign you only have a few hours left. Over $100,000 have already been raised. The goal is to get 100 people to donate to a slate of good conservative candidates. As an added incentive if the goal is reached the RNC will send out a fundraising email to its massive list. So pick a candidate with fewer than 100 donors and give. I'll be helping State Speaker John Gard keep Wisconsin's 8th Congressional District in GOP hands.
"The Rightroots 15 days Challenge -- 8 1/2 Hours To Go"
Mark Green on Merit Pay for Teachers
Many teachers work very, very hard. They deserve their salaries and more. Rep. Mark Green agrees and wants merit pay for teachers.
Giving good teachers a pay raise makes sense to me. That's what happens in the private sector. WEAC will gripe because their mission isn't to promote teacher excellence; it's to protect union members no matter how poorly their doing their jobs.
Please make a donation to help Rep. Mark Green "make Wisconsin great again."
Raging Muslims' Selective Historic Memory
Gail Hapke looked into the context of the quote Pope Benedict used to suposedly insult Muslims. Her finding is facinating:
How interesting indeed, that in the old days of Muslim ascendency, no one offered to cut off the head of the questioning infidel, although they could easily have done so. Instead, his gracious hosts encouraged him to speak his mind and amused themselves by answering his objections and correcting his misconceptions, as they understood them.
As usual in the blogosphere, read the whole thing. Don't be like some violent, rampaging Muslims. What I've learned is although Islam is deeply in touch with its history it's selective. I'm guessing fundamentalist Muslims see the tolerance Muslim leaders practiced in Manuel II Palaiologos' day to skew from the "true Islam." But realize that tolerance was practiced during Islam's heyday when it was a world power and Europe feared its encroachment.
"Who Was the 'Educated Persian?'"
Chavez Calls Bush "The Devil" at U.N.
Venezualan president Hugo Chavez is just so darn entertaining. Today at the U.N., he held up a copy of Noam Chomsky's Hegemony and Survival and called President Bush "the devil."
Something was lost in translation for Deutsche Presse-Agenteur because they lead with "Venezuela's President Hugo Chavez compared US President George W Bush to 'the devil.'" There was no comparison. Chavez called Bush "the devil." Chavez went on to say, "The devil came here and this place still smells today." Imagine the stench after Chavez left.
In his rant Chavez appealed to the "people of the United States and the world to halt this threat, which is like a sword hanging over our head." He's hoping the Democrats take the House so Rep. John Conyers can start impeachment hearings. Remember, a vote for the Democrats is a vote for a Hugo Chavez-backed overthrow of the Bush Presidency.
I expect sales of Chomsky's book to jump while Bush bashers go out of their way to praise Chavez for "speaking truth to power."
"Chavez Calls Bush 'Devil' in Insult-Riddled Speech to U.N."
UPDATE: Greg Tinti has video from Chavez's speech. Chavez said the U.S. was "the greatest threat looming over our planet" and American actions are "placing at risk the very survivial of the human species."
Not only did his speech reek of anti-Americanism but the audience's reaction did too. They laughed at his "jokes" and give him warm applause when Chavez was finished. There's one thing I agree with the oil-powered maniac: move the U.N. to Venezuela. The U.S. doesn't deserve such petulant haters here.
UPDATE II: Rob at Say Anything sighs then adds:
You know what the biggest problem with the UN is? It has become forum where the rantings of truly evil dictators like Hugo Chavez and Mahmoud Ahmadinejad (and yes, my liberal friends, those men are dictators as there wasn't much democracy in the "elections" that put them into power) get equal footing along side statements from the American president and other leaders of western democracies. By elevating these tyrants to equal status with the leaders of the free world we, in effect, grant legitimacy to their causes and their evil regimes.
Indiana Refinery to be Expanded
BP wants to expand its Indiana oil refinery to process Canadian oil. Those who complain about high gas prices and reliance on Middle East oil should get on board and make sure the regulators give their approval.
"BP Planning $3 Billion Whiting Refinery Investment"
Comments Have Returned
The comments are up again. Here's hoping I don't get hit with another spam avalanche.
Play nice and turn the screaming down to 8 from 11.
Charlie's Show Prep #164
It's baaaack!!! Charlie, I'm sure your show hasn't been the same since I took my unannounced break. Sort of like your unannounced vacations. ;-)
September 19, 2006
Saddam's Lawyer Caught Snoozing
Saddam's lawyer is either enjoying the Baghdad nightlife too much, or he doens't give a damn about his client:
THE chief judge in Saddam Hussein's genocide trial castigated a defence lawyer for falling asleep during the proceedings, as a witness was recounting a gas attack.
I almost feel sorry for Saddam, but then I remember the thousands he had killed. That sympathy quickly evaporates.
"Judge Castigates Sleeping Saddam Lawyer"
Gammons Returns to Work
Three months after suffering a brain aneurysm ESPN baseball know-it-all Peter Gammons will cover tomorrow night's Boston-Minnesota game at Fenway Park.
"Gammons to Return to Work"
September 18, 2006
Daughter Snatched by Parents to Have Abortion
I know two people who won't win the Parent of the Year award:
Police charged a Maine couple on Monday of kidnapping their pregnant 19-year-old daughter, who was bound with rope and duct tape and bundled into her parents' car to force her to have an emergency abortion.
The parents didn't approve of the unborn child's father who is in jail. These goons (not parents) freaked out that their daughter wasn't as perfect as they wanted her to be. So what better way to solve the problem then to kill the grandchild. I'm confident the daughter won't be asking them to babysit.
"Parents Kidnap Daughter to Have Abortion"
UPDATE: Parents Behaving Badly, a fitting weblog, caught wind of this story.
UPDATE II: What's with attacking pregnant women in Maine?
The man wanted in connection with the assault of a pregnant woman in Hancock turned himself in Wednesday morning.
Is there some bad lobster going around over there?
Ad War Intensifies
It's commercial time.
Ford-GM Have Talked about Merging
GM and Ford merging would rock more than Detroit:
Senior executives at General Motors and Ford Motor Co. have discussed a merger or alliance, according to several sources familiar with the talks.
The Chevy and Ford fanatics would puke. For me, I'd want to short the combined company's stock. Nothing good happens when you take one faltering company and mush it together with another faltering company. Either GM or Ford will have to go under before the labor unions and calcified management really shake things up, become more innovative, and make cars people want to buy.
Both Ford and GM have to get under their union contracts and start from scratch. That means some factories would be unionized while other wouldn't. It means building cars would be more like building computers. Cars would go from designs to sell-able product in months instead of years. It means designing factories and manufacturing processes to quickly shift production from slow-selling vehicles to more popular cars. That way the companies wouldn't have to shut down production or offer margin-crimping incentives. GM and Ford have learn much from Toyota, Honda, and the other Japanese car companies. Now, they should look to Silicon Valley as their model. If they did it right they'd leapfrog the Japanese and be kings of the next generation of car making.
"The Ultimate Alliance"
UPDATE: GM's and Ford's home state has an abundance of economic problems as Jay Reding notes.
Bush: War Can't Be Islam Vs. Christianity
If you ever talk to radio yapper Mike Gallagher you shouldn't bother to say it's off the record. That won't stop him from blabbing as he did when he mentioned to the George Christian Coalition what President Bush told him recently:
He told the audience he was fresh back from an hour-and-45-minute session which President Bush held in the Oval Office Friday afternoon with him and four other conservative talk show hosts: Atlanta’s Neal Boortz, Laura Ingraham, Sean Hannity and Michael Medved. Rush Limbaugh couldn’t make it, he said.
As James Joyner observes, "It’s no small irony that this was revealed while introducing, Ann 'invade their countries, kill their leaders and convert them to Christianity' Coulter."
"An Evening with Ann… and Lynn"
Mark Green on Health Savings Accounts
There are some (there always are) who will say, "There's no difference between the two candidates." Sometimes they're right, but on the issue of health savings accounts there is a big difference. Rep. Mark Green wants to make them deductible on Wisconsin taxes while Gov. Doyle has vetoed the legislation.
Response to Pope's Words Shows Little Progress in Muslim World
Daniel Johnson sees Pope Benedict's role as similar to Pope John Paul II's fight against athiest Communism. Dad29 wonders if bad MSM reporting blew up Benedict's brief mention of Islam into something more deadly.
I'm at a similar place at Australian Cardinal George Pell:
But Cardinal Pell today backed Pope Benedict, saying the violent reaction to his comments on Islam and violence illustrated his fears.
It's been five years since the Sep. 11 attacks and I'm still waiting for moderate Muslims to begin fighting for their faith. If you want to talk about a battle that has made zero progress it's the one between moderate and extremist Muslims.
Green-Doyle Debate I
Friday night is the worst night to hold a political debate. It's the beginning of the weekend when people begin relaxing and doing things they want to do not the stuff they're told to do. People are going out, taking in one of Wisconsin's famous fish fries, or seeing a movie. News-wise it isn't good either. Saturday newspapers are the least read of the entire week. Why do you think Gov. Doyle vetoed so many bills on a Friday afternoon? A governor's debate on a Friday night makes little sense. So I saved my post-debate analysis until now when people are back into the swing of thinking about "serious" subjects like politics.
Rep. Mark Green understood the debate's timing and unleashed his assortment of sound bites as answers to questions from an audience put together by We the People/Wisconsin. (To spice it up they should have some webloggers take on the candidates.) Friday night's debate was on taxes and the economy. Green jumped on his anti-tax soapbox to tell the audience that "the problem in Wisconsin is we're over-taxed." When asked to rank his preference among various kinds of taxes he said, "I'm unable to say that any of them are too low. All of our taxes are too high." In every answer to a question Green mentioned taxes. He's banking on anti-tax sentiment and hoping enough people will vote on that issue.
For Gov. Doyle every other word out of his mouth was "education." He made the case that he worked very hard to write a budget that protected education and taxpayers. He attacked Green for Washington, D.C.'s fiscal irresponsibility saying, "They haven't made the hard choices in Washington. We have made the hard choices in Madison." He mentioned how previous governors led us to our current budget problems and how federal policies were harming Wisconsin job creation.
Green countered Doyle's budget acumen by pointing out how he borrowed from the transportation fund and other pools of state money to put the budget into balance. Yes, it's easy to claim you put together a balanced budget when: 1) it's required in the state constitution; and 2) you take money from other funds pushing spending cuts and/or tax increases into the future.
On the budget Doyle said that Green's plan to freeze taxes and spending would mean "deep cuts." But in politician-speak that means slowing the rate of growth, something Green stated he wanted to do.
One of Green's goals was to make himself the anti-tax candidate. He succeeded. Gov. Doyle was forced to talk about the taxes he did cut. Doyle's goal was to connect himself with education even if the second debate would focus on that topic. He talked about how we have "got to make sure we have decent schools." He said he has a "full commitment to education."
Throughout the debate Gov. Doyle appeared staid, fairly competent and, well, boring. But being boring doesn't necessarily hurt you when trying to get re-elected. However, near the end Gov. Doyle finally got irritated by Rep. Green constantly accusing him of not caring about high taxes. When talking about a tax freeze that he vetoed three times he said, "I've got to be the grown-up in this." Remember that. Gov. Doyle doesn't think you're serious and an adult if you think taxes should stop going up. Imagine what he thinks of people who want their taxes cut. We caught a glimpse of the real Jim Doyle.
Green hasn't gone after Gov. Doyle's ethical problems. That's the elephant in the room for the two debates. Because the debate organizers have the debates structured around topics--Friday's on taxes and the economy with the 10.22 debate on education and health care--it could be difficult for Green to ask Doyle tough questions about state contracts given to campaign contributors or to go back in time and remind voters the 2002 Doyle campaign kissed up mentally ill people with pastry and small cash prize bingo games or even about how his staff thought it would be a good idea to send a bad of used needles to State Assembly Speaker John Gard's office. He has to find a way to talk about improving the dignity of state government and its office holders. Gov. Doyle's record is an embarrassment to Wisconsin. Mark Green needs to make sure he's held accountable.
"Taxes and Economy Focus of First Guv Debate"
Lightsabers and Football Video Games
I found two people with too much time on their hands:
September 17, 2006
Eris' Name Fits
The astronomical object that caused astronomers to define what a planet is and demote Pluto has been given the "perfect name" according to its discoverer:
Eris is the new permanent name for the solar body formerly known as Xena, while Pluto’s new number reflects its loss of planetary status.
"Dwarf Planet, Cause of Strife, Gains ‘the Perfect Name’"
Similar Web Hosting Problems
John Hawkins uses Dreamhost to host his popular weblog. He hasn't been too keen on their service:
My hosting company, Dreamhost, used to give good service. However, for the last couple of months they've been absolutely horrible and up and down like a yo-yo. I've been raising hell with them about it and they've moved me to a different, supposedly more reliable server, but my confidence in them is shot.
Hawkins is harsher because his Right Wing News is his full-time job.
September 16, 2006
Rude Protesters Interrupt Doyle
I've noticed a lack of passion by right-wing voters in Southeast Wisconsin. I think many are still bummed Scott Walker is no longer running for governor.
So while the rude protest at Gov. Doyle's news conference yesterday was "dumb and counterproductive" (to steal from Charlie Sykes) it gives me some hope that Rep. Mark Green will win the election by finding a way to constructively use all that anti-Doyle energy pent up in Southeast Wisconsin.
"Protesters Disrupt Doyle News Conference"
Wisconsin Doesn't Ban Necrophilia
I bet you didn't know Wisconsin has no ban on necrophilia. That may change. The three Cassville kooks who thought digging up a body and having sex with it would be a fun way to pass the time had their sexual assault charge tossed out. It sort of makes sense in a sick, obscene way. It's hard to rape someone when they're dead. You're neither given nor denied consent. It sounds like a question on a law exam from the craziest law professor this side of [fill in the blank with a Leftist-dominated law school of your choice]. Me thinks whoever is sitting in the governor's office next year will be signing a necrophilia law. Just a hunch.
"Judge Nixes Attempted Sexual Assault Charges Against Accused Grave Robbers"
September 15, 2006
Blame the Spammers
TAM has been getting hit so hard by comment and trackback spammers that comments had to be shut down. I'll get them up and running again in a day or so to see if this was a temporary situation. When I move TAM to WordPress I hope that really eases the problem. Sorry for the annoyance.
Reggie Bush: On the Take While at USC
We now have a non-football-related answer to why the Houston Texans chose Mario Williams over Reggie Bush. The Yahoo! Sports reporting doesn't change my mind that the Packers should have tried to draft him. I would have picked him #1 and watched him like a hawk to make sure he didn't treat NFL rules as cavalierly as he did NCAA rules.
"Cash and Carry"
September 14, 2006
Dumb Mr. Ney
Rep. Bob Ney isn't the smartest political cookie. If he wanted to plead guilty he should have done it a few weeks ago when voters were still on vacations and not thinking of November elections. He now lets Democrats take a few shots at the GOP's "culture of corruption" when people are actually paying attention.
"Rep. Bob Ney Expected To Plead Guilty To Criminal Charge"
September 13, 2006
Bill Bops with the Blogosphere
You can't say Bill Clinton is a dumb politician. He met with a group of Lefty webloggers at his Harlem office. I'm certain he would have pressed the flesh (figuratively and literally) with webloggers if they were running around when he was President. And better than most pols he fed them. With a little food we're easily bought.
The next time you're in your hotel room with too much energy take a flying leap. Just make sure you take a picture for BedJump.com.
Here's some inspiration:
Packers Trade Gado and Other Ted Thompson Moves
Ted Thompson continues to shake up the Green Bay Packers line up trading last year's surprise star Samkon Gado to the Houston Texans for running back Vernand Morency. The Packers get a speedier running back but give up a proven run producer. Starter Ahman Green had a major injury last season. Although he ran well against the Chicago Bears Sunday quality depth is important.
In a questionable move yesterday, the Packers cut fullback Vonte Leach. That leaves William Henderson as their sole fullback. The guy's not getting younger, and Leach had a good game. Coach Mike McCarthy must be planning to use more two tight end formations which would mean fewer plays for a fullback.
As for signing Koren Robinson I think part of it was a salary cap play as well as a realization that getting good field position on punt and kickoff returns might put the offense in better situations to make plays and reduce mistakes.
"Texans Trade Morency to Packers for Gado"
Bucher Slams Van Hollen in Defeat
When people run for office they put their hearts and souls into it. Hours upon hours are taken up giving speeches, knocking on doors, contemplating strategy, and raising money. Achieving victory must amount to an amazing high. Defeat must be worse than 50 punches to the gut. I can understand Paul Bucher being upset in his loss to J. B. Van Hollen. What he didn't need to do was lash out the way he did. In his concession speech he said,
We were right on the issues - you know it and I know it. We just ran short of money. And you know, that's disappointing that elections can be bought. And I wish J.B. well, but, you know, dumping that kind of money in the race in the last two weeks tells me Wisconsin's for sale.
Van Hollen has funded a good portion of his campaign with a loan on his home. Using one's financial means isn't buying voters. Sen. Kohl has been funding his campaigns out of his fat wallet for years yet no one claims he's bought Wisconsin.
I'm a tad insulted that Bucher thinks my vote can be bought. I didn't endorse Van Hollen because of a television commerical I didn't see--the guy isn't buying much ad time during Milwaukee Brewers' games. I endorsed him because he is right on the issues, is electable, and would do well as Attorney General.
Bucher was understandably frustrated. Thus I'll give him some slack and forget about his bashing of all those good people who went out in some awful weather to vote.
P.S. Did anyone at Van Hollen's party see where Brian Fraley passed out? Did he have a big grin on his face?
"Falk Tops Lautenschlager, Will Face Van Hollen"
Murtha Wins GOP Primary
Here's an oddity I found among the elections results. John Murtha won the GOP primary.
Ok, this John Murtha has nothing to do with the John Murtha wanting the U.S. to bail out of Iraq. The war probably didn't have any role in that state assembly race. Here's how Wisconsin's John Murtha responded to questions from a local newspaper:
What would your goals be if elected? What would be the main focuses of your term?
No mention of Iraq, which didn't bother me. I don't really give much credence to what either John Murtha thinks about the war.
September 12, 2006
TAM Endorses J.B. Van Hollen
In a few hours the polls will close and the Wiscosin primary election season will end. The big race for me is who will be the Republican nominee for Attorney General. For Waukesha District Attorney Paul Bucher to be from the region I've seen tons of signs for former U.S. Attorney J.B. Van Hollen. That's an indication of some grassroots party support. Along with that Van Hollen has financial resources to run a formidible general election campaign. A negative is Van Hollen's habit of shooting from the hip and not better explaining himself. That's why his "terrorists in Wisconsin" quip is still following him.
Paul Bucher has been on hell of a prosecutor. His sense of justice has made him take on cases that lesser men would run away from. Think prosecuting former Packers fave Mark Chmura. But the Attorney General's office isn't about directly prosecuting criminals--unless your Peg Lautenschlager desparate for some good media.
As Daniel Suhr writes,
I think JB has the temperment and experience to serve as the state’s law enforcement leader. His service as U.S. Attorney has prepared him well for dealing with a range of cases (criminal, civil) and co-workers (sheriffs, DAs, FBI, etc).
That's not to say Bucher couldn't work with other groups. He might.
On the issues both Bucher and Van Hollen both are solid conservatives who would change state Attorney General policy for the better. With both we would see an empahsis on traditional crime fighting. We would see the end to the philosophy of policy-making-by-lawsuit that began when Jim Doyle was in office.
To end the Democrats' reign of the Attorney General's office we need a capable, conservative candidate with the resources and temperment to win over voters across the state. I am voting for J.B. Van Hollen, and I hope you will too.
September 11, 2006
More Sep. 11 Rememberences
Here are some more posts on the anniversary of the Sep. 11 attacks:
Four Years Ago Today...
On 09.11.2002 I wrote about Bruce Springsteen's The Rising:
For today, I was set to pan Bruce Springsteen's The Rising. I've been listening to the album for weeks to see if the first pop culture artifact inspired by September 11 adequately conveyed virtuous feelings. For most of my listenings, I've been skeptical. The songs tell stories of the victims and friends and family left behind. What isn't there is the justified anger directed toward our enemies. Al-qaeda methodically planned and funded an attack that turned civilian airliners into human-guided cruise missiles. It was brilliant and horrific at the same time. The closest Springsteen gets is the line, "I want an eye for an eye." He has an entire song devoted to the view of a suicide bomber ("Paradise") but not even a line about a special ops soldier helping liberate Afghanistan. (I'm sure Springsteen has the talent to create some lyric around blazing a laser on a target for an on-coming B-52.)
Five Years Ago Today...
I wrote on 09.11.2001:
Evil's shadow fell upon the United States today. Even now, a cloud of death covers the ruins of the World Trade Center and the Pentagon.
More Proof that Webloggers are Geeks
There's been way too much talk in the blogosphere about ABC's lame Path to 9/11 miniseries. Uh, guys, yesterday was Week 1 of the NFL. I watched my Packers get trounced. Sunday night, the Manning brothers faced each other for the first time and too many of you were watching a melodrama about a story you already know the ending to.
Priorities, people. Priorities.
"Video: “Path to 9/11″ Update: Side-by-Side Comparison"
Remembering Eric Allen
As part of the 2,996 project TAM is remembering Eric Allen, 44, who died in the World Trade Center on Sep. 11, 2001. As part of Rescue Squad 18 Eric was one of the brave firemen who ran into the twin towers to save as many people as possible. He sacrificed his life for theirs.
A wife and daughter will forever miss him. Me, a little weblogger half a continent away can only say, "thank you."
"Eric Allen: All the Right Things"
I will also link to other participants of the 2,996 Project as I wander the blogosphere today.
A Sad Instance of Depravity
I know any publicity is good publicity but it's sad so many have come to TAM by way of Google keywords, "crocodile hunter death video."
Please move along. Nothing like that to see here.
September 10, 2006
Better Luck Next Week
It's not a great start for me in the Webloggers League when my bench players score more than my starters. But that's why they play the whole season.
Path to 9/11 Clips
Even with all the yapping around the blogosphere and inside Washington, D.C. I had not intention of watching ABC's Path to 9/11. Mike Krempasky posted some controversial clips of the show on Redstate. After watching the over-acting, the melodramatic slow motions and music, and ex-New Kid on the Block Donnie Walberg I still won't be sacrificing Sunday Night Football for the miniseries.
"ABC's Path to 9/11: The Video Democrats DON'T WANT YOU TO SEE"
"ABC's Path to 9/11: Clip Synopsis"
Did you miss me?
DreamHost finally got things fixed and TAM is up and running. This was the worst outage in the many years I've been with the host. They tell me they'll be doing some network upgrades Monday night. I hope that prevents future problems.
I survived the quiet time without enduring the shakes. I now know I'm fully capable of surviving weblogging withdrawal without need too much methadone.
September 08, 2006
Fake Crocodile Hunter Death Video
Since the Steve Irwin's death video hasn't been leaked onto the internet yet some bozos made their own. You'll have to click on the link. It's too lame to deserve being put in this post.
September 07, 2006
The Current State of GOP Presidential Candidates
Stephen Bainbridge thinks some GOP candidate will try "outflank Bush to the right." He uses Newt Gingrich's muscular talk about the war as an example. I hope someone does this--Guiliani would be a good bet for tough war talk--because there's no current candidate that inspires me. Sen. John McCain hates political free speech, Sen. George Allen shoots a little too much from the hip and isn't agile enough to clean up his mess, and the other people who potentially could jump in have little name recognition to even inspire a political junkie like me. Newt has his problems, temperment and management style, but he's a man who's not afraid to think big.
"Gingrich Flanking Bush to the Right"
Donate to Dean
While I'm on a donation kick think about sending a few bucks Dean Esmay's way. He's dealing with some unemployment insurance problems and hasn't "seen a paycheck in the Esmay household for over a month." Ouch!
September 06, 2006
Doyle-Green Campaign Ad Wars
Rep. Mark Green is getting some good earned (free) media for his radio ad that plays off an old Budweiser commercial:
Jessica McBride talked about the ad for a while on her radio show tonight, and Owen Robinson thinks "it's fantastic." "Mr. Tax-Hiking Politician Man" might be the catch-phrase of the campaign even if Anheuser-Busch isn't thrilled.
Gov. Doyle already has an ad blasting Green for his "illegal" campaign money, illegal only because Doyle flacks on the Elections Board retroactively declared some of Green's money illegal. Well, he took some video from a Madison television station. The out-of-context manner the Doyle campaign used the video ticked off the station:
The clip involving NBC 15 is taken out of context, because attribution used in the story was removed.
Green is going down the Russ Feingold path of cute, funny, memorable commercials that get caught in your head and force you to talk about them at the water cooler. Doyle is airing traditional campaign commercials that bash the opponent with news media quotes and clips. For now this gives Green the advantage. He still has to introduce himself to voters outside Green Bay and the Fox River Valley. He needs a good hook. However, he can't just be known as the candidate with the funny commercials. Voters want to elect a man who will be serious when in office (and I don't mean seriously paying off his campaign contributors). With his first commercials Green is setting the hook. Eventually he'll have to reel the voters in with more substance.
Donate to John Gard and Rightroots Candidates
It's after Labor Day when political campaigns traditionally lurch into high gear. This year is no different. Through enough political mistakes the GOP is poised to lose one or both house of Congress. Right-wing webloggers don't want to see this happen. So Rightroots was created to help get more conservatives elected to Congress. With webloggers like John Hawkins, "Captain Ed" Morrisey, and Erick Erickson backing the effort you can be assured the Rightroots candidates are good conservatives.
Today begins the Rightroots 15-Day Challenge. The goal is to get 100 new donors for each of the selected Rightroots candidates by 09.20. Wisconsin State Assembly Speaker John Gard is one of them. Gard has a pack of Democrats fighting it out to challenge him in the general election. John will need all the help he can get to keep Rep. Mark Green's seat in GOP hands. I urge you to give a few dollars to Gard as well as to some of the other Rightroots candidates.
"Time Is Running Out"
Get Ready to Flip that Playstation 3
People looking for a way to make a quick (legal) buck should know Sony has lowered the expected number of Playstation 3 consoles that will make it to North America this fall:
Sony Computer Entertainment Chief Ken Kutaragi told reporters that far fewer units will be available for the U.S. and Japanese launches, with the U.S. to be allocated 400,000 units, and Japan getting 100,000. As a result, Sony has now lowered its estimate of 4 million PS3s shipped by the end of 2006 to a more realistic 2 million.
Like what happened last year with the Xbox 360, eBay will be buzzing with high-priced game console auctions. European gamers with large wallets will be wanting their PS3.
"North American, Japanese PS3 Launch Limited to 500,000 Units"
"Sony’s PS3 Delayed In Europe"
Lawrence Wright's The Looming Tower
When books appear on bestseller lists a bright neon red sign reading "skeptical" pops into my mind. I admit I'm a bit of a snob, but when bestseller lists contain The Da Vinci Code for years on end, and when an Ann Coulter collection of bad-jokes-as-polemic appears at number one immediately after its release you can understand my hesitation at basing the quality of a book on current popularity. That was my initial impression of Lawrence Wright's The Looming Tower. However, from the reviews I've read it's a formidable tome. Reviewer Erik Spanberg praises the book writing,
Simply put, this is the most thorough and accessible account of the people, politics, and roiling theology behind Islamic terrorism. It should be required reading for every American; yes, it is that good.
I used to think the Sep. 11 Commission's report was "required reading." That was until we learned they knew about the Able Danger project but decided to mention it in the report. What else did they neglect? Even though we're almost five years from that terrible Tuesday there's much we need to learn about the people, events, and ideas that let to it. We're at a place where an Islamic instructor at the prestigious University of Wisconsin-Madison claims (and will teach his students) the U.S. government destroyed the twin towers. Hopefully Wright's book will help lead us down the path of truth.
Ground Zero Workers Experience Lung Problems
With the five-year anniversary of the Sep. 11 attacks soon upon us remember there were victims besides the dead and wounded from the attacks. Rescue workers who toiled at Ground Zero also suffered from Osama bin Laden's evil attack:
Nearly 70% of recovery workers who responded to the attacks on the World Trade Center suffered lung problems during or after their work at ground zero, a new health study released Tuesday shows.
Instead of bickering amongst ourselves we should remember the source of this evil.
"Major Health Study Finds 70% of WTC Recovery Workers Suffered Lung Problems"
Fidel Castro Getting Better
Bad news for freedom lovers. Fidel Castro is feeling better and has lost some weight.
"Slimmer Castro Says 'The Worst is Over' Since His Op"
Crikey! Steve Irwin was a Freak
Steve Irwin had a few screws loose. That's not surprising since he thought is was a perfectly good idea to roll around with creatures that could kill him in an instant. The U.K.'s Daily Star reports the Crocodile Hunter wanted the cameras to keep rolling even while he was being killed. Irwin once said, "My number one rule is to keep that camera rolling. Even if it’s shaky or slightly out of focus, I don’t give a rip!
"Even if a big big old alligator is chewing me up I want to go down and go, ‘Crikey!’ just before I die. That would be the ultimate for me."
Me, I'd prefer is someone would try to save me, but I didn't have a death wish.
I figured Irwin's death video would pop up on the internet. Instead, it might be broadcast on television so people can watch the death of a man from the confines of their living rooms.
But that won't happen if Irwin's manager John Stainton has his way. He told Larry King, "I would never want that tape shown. It should be destroyed. At the moment, it's in police custody. A coroner's inquest is taking place. When that is finally released, it will never see the light of day, ever."
If Stainton tries to destroy the tape it will eventually leak onto the internet. That's just the state of the world and technology today. It's easy to make copies and send them anywhere; and too many can't control their urges and want to see anything and everything.
September 05, 2006
Mark Green's Money Machine
With the latest fundraising numbers available we know why Gov. Doyle had his flacks on the State Election Board pull a partisan, unfair, retroactive stunt on Rep. Mark Green. Green pulled in $1.39 million to Doyle's $494,000. According to Kevin Binversie Doyle's cash advantage is only $$327,380.
"Green Outraises Doyle Nearly 3 to 1"
Battlestar Galactica Season Three Preview
To come back to Battlestar Galactica TV Squad got DVDs of the first four hours of season three. Keith McDuffee is happy:
Let me start by saying that you won't be disappointed. I admit I was afraid things were going to be pretty sketchy this season, with the show's creators taking a leap of faith by transplanting the series a year into the future. I'm extremely pleased at how well it's working, and there are lots of hints of promise for what's to come.
"Battlestar Galactica Season Three -- an Early Look" [via Netscape]
Crocodile Hunter Pulled Out Barb Before Dying
Steve Irwin, the Crocodile Hunter, was a man's man in the last few moments of his life:
The dramatic details of Irwin's death Monday as he was shooting a program on the Great Barrier Reef were disclosed by John Stainton, his manager and close friend. He said he had viewed the videotape showing the TV star pulling the poisonous stingray barb from his chest.
I'm surprised the video hasn't hit the internet yet. But it will. Eventually it will.
"'Crocodile Hunter' Took out Barb on Tape"
Tech Problems and Distractions
I may have a day off (thanks boss), but the posting is light. Movable Type isn't liking me today, and I'm distracted by my fantasy football draft in a few hours.
TiVo's Secret Origin
Who knew TiVo was alien technology? This "secret" government film tells us the truth. Too bad there's no word on if TiVo had anything to do with the JFK assassination, the sinking of the Maine, or Gary Coleman's fall from A-list celebrity status.
Battlestar Galactica "Webisodes"
Those cruel people at SciFi Channel are treating their Battlestar Galactica-addicted viewers like crack heads with ten "webisodes" leading to the 10.06 season premier.
Carnival of the Capitalists
The Business of America is Business hosts this week's Carnival of the Capitalists Q & A style.
"Funny" 9/11 Videos
You are a very debased individual to take Sep. 11 video, add the Benny Hill theme, speed up the tape to make it look like it something from the British comedy, and think that's funny.
Or how about making an episode of America's Funniest Home Videos with people jumping from the twin towers, planes crashing, people caked in dust, London terrorist attacks, and an audience laughing? Sick!
I suggest buying to renting a copy of United 93 and/or going to the bookstore and page through Joel Meyerowitz's Aftermath. Joel was the only photographer with unlimited access to Ground Zero.
September 04, 2006
Steve Irwin's Death Filmed
Yes, I'll take a brief dive into celebrity death posting. The Crocodile Hunter died off the coast of Australia. He was wacked by a frightened stingray. The twisted part comes now that there's word a camera filmed the scene. It will make it onto YouTube in 3...2...1....
"And the Sick Searches Begin..."
"Steve Irwin, The Croc Hunter, RIP"
"Steve Irwin Dead At 44"
September 03, 2006
Embryos Killed in Possible Stem Cell Breakthrough
Recent news that scientists found a way to get stem cells from human embryos without killing them isn't quite so true:
Dr. Lanza noted in his article that the cell removed in this test, known as preimplantation genetic diagnosis, or P.G.D., could be used, after growing and dividing, both for testing and, with his new technique, to derive human embryonic stem cells. Since the original embryo would be unharmed, a principal objection to the research would be removed, he said.
Wesley J. Smith writes that the NY Times has been dishonest about ACT research:
It is, in fact, not known whether one cell taken from an 8-10 cell embryo could be used to derive an ES cell line. Other researchers have already tried to do it with two cells and failed, for example. At most, it would be accurate to state that scientists "hope" it could be done or "theorize" it could be done. To say assertively that "other researchers could use this technique" is bad science, and to let that assertion hang in the air as if it is a given, was negligent journalism.
*SIGH* More human deaths in the name of scientific progress. I pray we have the wisdom to find a way to reap tremendous medical advances while not making a deal with the devil. A way will be found if merely for the interests of scientists who want to feed off the federal government's tit.
"Clarification Issued on Stem Cell Work"
September 02, 2006
Quit While You're Ahead
Kevin Kouzmanoff, the baseball gods have spoken. On your first ever major league pitch you hit a grand slam. It won't get any better than that. Retire now.
September 01, 2006