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Friday, September 30, 2005

Defending the Statement

By now, most people have heard that Bill Bennett (former Drug Czar and Secretary of Education, founder of the K12 homeschool system, and, yes, person with a gambling problem) said something that the MSM jumped on (after a Soros-funded hack site jumped on it). Here's the quote from his radio show:
"I do know that it's true that if you wanted to reduce crime, you could, if that were your sole purpose, you could abort every black baby in this country and your crime rate would go down ... that would be an impossible, ridiculous and morally reprehensible thing to do, but your crime rate would go down. So these far-out, these far-reaching, extensive extrapolations are, I think, tricky," said Bennett.
Let's put this into context, first. He was discussing the book Freakonomics on his radio show. One of several premises in the book is that legalized abortion, in part, has contributed to the decline in the crime rate in the US. Here is his explanation of what happened on Wednesday's show. In part:
"On Wednesday, a caller to my radio show proposed the idea that one good argument for the pro-life position would be that if we didn't have abortions, Social Security would be solvent. I stated my doubts about such a thesis, as well as my opposition to such a form of argument (the audio of the call is available at my Website:

"I then stated that such extrapolations of this argument can cut both ways, and cited the current bestseller, Freakonomics, which discusses the authors' thesis that abortion reduces crime.

"Then, putting my philosophy professor's hat on, I went on to reveal the limitations of such arguments by showing the absurdity in another such argument, along the same lines. I entertained what law school professors call 'the Socratic method' and what I would hope good social science professors still use in their seminars. In so doing, I suggested a hypothetical analogy while at the same time saying the proposition I was using about blacks and abortion was 'impossible, ridiculous, and morally reprehensible,' just to ensure those who would have any doubt about what they were hearing, or for those who tuned in to the middle of the conversation.
Makes sense to me. Mr. Bennett is not racist. He was following in the footsteps of his friend, Rush Limbaugh, by "demonstrating absurdity by being absurd." He said, in the quote, that it was "impossible, ridiculous, and morally reprehensible". I guess they missed that part.

I hate to do this, but... I'm going to, anyway. And I'll probably get trolled for it. Oh, well.

I have long been a believer that the higher crime stats within the black community are a direct correlation to the Welfare State. Once Uncle Sam stepped in to take care of the women and children (there is a reason it's called WIC, you know), the status of men within the poor community (African American, Caucasian, whatever) dropped substantially. They became nothing more than sperm donors. Man's God-given urge to provide and protect, traditional views of masculinity, are seen as worthless. If a man stepped up to the plate and married the woman he loved, then she could not get as much (if any) state aid. So... shack up... or just get her pregnant. Don't have a good job- you can get more money from the government. But there remains that machismo, that need to prove that he is a man. Because of the chain of broken families and few if any positive male role models, young poor men turn to other ways of expressing their masculinity- crime, gangs, etc. This, unfortunately, is most evident within poor African American communities in the United States.

You need stats? I have stats.
# Lifetime chances of a person going to prison are higher for
-- men (11.3%) than for women (1.8%)
-- blacks (18.6%) and Hispanics (10%) than for whites (3.4%)
# Based on current rates of first incarceration, an estimated 32% of black males will enter State or Federal prison during their lifetime, compared to 17% of Hispanic males and 5.9% of white males.
# 64% of prison inmates belonged to racial or ethnic minorities in 2001.
#An estimated 57% of inmates were under age 35 in 2001.
# In 2000, African Americans represented ~13% of the US population.
And from this site, we have this:
63% of abortion patients are white, however, black women are more than 3 times as likely to have an abortion, and Hispanic women are 2.5 times as likely.
Serious violent crime has seen a steady decrease.
SO... by tossing those stats into a blender, we come up with a hypothesis- the number of violent crimes has decreased, perhaps in part by the number of abortions performed in the US (the premise put forth in the book). Based on this information, we could in theory extrapolate that, using Bennett's comment, by reducing (by abortion) or even eliminating a subset of the population which has a higher than average percentage of criminal activity within the subset, you could have reduced the number of prisoners in the system by 15-30%. (But, as HDD is known to say, "in theory, communism works".) Would it work, technically, yes. Am I in favor of it? No. Not just no. Hell no. I don't support abortion or racism, anymore than Mr. Bennett does.

When a liberal compares the President to Hitler or Pol Pot or Bull Connor, you're not supposed to question their motives. (Rangle claims that he didn't mean to imply that W is racist, but that his actions brought attention to a race problem in the same way that Bull Connor's did back in his time... yeah.... right... ) When a conservative makes a comment that he admits, within the comment, is morally reprehensible, it's more than acceptable to demand retractions and apologies and everything else.

Getting rid of the Welfare State, demanding quality education (or the vouchures to do it yourself) and expecting great things from your children is how you will lower the crime rate. Genocide of a part of our population won't do it, even if statistics says it might.

The Danes Save Christmas... Sort of...

Well, I mean... it was the least they could do, considering it was their pilots who killed Rudolf!
The Danish Air Force said Thursday it paid about $5,000 in compensation to a part-time Santa Claus whose reindeer died of heart failure when two fighter jets roared over his farm.

The animal, named Rudolf, was grazing at the farm of Olavi Nikkanoff in central Denmark when the screaming F-16 jets passed overhead at low altitude in February. The reindeer collapsed and died, leaving Nikkanoff with the prospect of only one animal pulling his sleigh next Christmas...

"We got a letter from Santa complaining about his reindeer's death and looked into it seriously," air force spokesman Capt. Morten Jensen said. The air force checked flight data and veterinary reports and concluded the planes had caused the animal's death.
Wonder if Santa's going to be able to find another reindeer with a nose so bright... (h/t to Sir George over at the Rott)

Wow! You Really Like Me!

If I'm doing my math correctly, someone at Los Alamos National Lab was my 30,000th visitor.

30,000 hits in a little over a year. Wow. Thanks, everyone!

Thursday, September 29, 2005

You! Off the List!

So... there's this toad. The boreal toad, to be specific. For a long time, it's been on the Endangered Species List. But, alas, no more. It's been booted off the list, because it's only a subspecies, and it's main species isn't exactly what you'd call endangered.
Developers have had to work around the toad's habitat since it was listed as a potential candidate for protection in 1995.

Several state road projects have added costly toad underpasses, and a ski slope developer agreed to build a new toad habitat in Breckenridge, deed wetlands to the town and fund toad studies in order to expand a ski area.
Wow... guess those people won't be getting that cash back, eh? There are several people who think that taking them off of the list is a good thing, and not just because of the cash saved.
Some biologists say getting the toad delisted may speed the pace of research on the amphibian, which could benefit it in the long run.

"When something is listed, we have to get special permits to do experiments with them," said Cindy Carey, a professor of integrative physiology at the University of Colorado.

"This will help us make rapid progress on understanding the toad's genetics and the fungus," Carey said.

Future genetic studies could prove that the Colorado toads are a separate species, or help researchers breed resistance to the deadly fungus.
I know a way to save these toads, but... for some reason, I just don't think that animal rights activists will be interested. Find a good recipe or two that calls for boreal toads, and publicize it.

No, seriously... I mean, it's not like there's a shortage of chickens or cows, now, is there?

Dad's Not Going To Buy One

I'd love a toaster like this, but... my dad? If it's not charred beyond recognition, he's not interested.
A TOASTER that uses radiation to prevent toast burning has been given the go-ahead in the UK.

By combining a household smoke detector with an electric toaster, it promises to deliver "perfect toast every time".

The device works by sucking in particles of caramelised bread and blowing them through an ionising sensor. In this sensor a small electrical current flows through an airborne path of ions, emitted by a pellet of radioactive americium-241. The ions attach themselves to any toast particles and reduce the strength of the current. You can set the toaster to switch off when the current drops by a specific amount according to how brown you like your toast.
Why do I get the feeling that "burn it" is not an acceptable setting?

What Is This?

So... glancing down at the little Weatherbug icon on my computer this morning, I see this:
uh... um... what is this 67° of which they speak? Why are the little bugs not hurrying to get across the sidewalk before they burst into flame? Where did the bright burning ball thingie in the sky go? Why is the sky grey instead of blue?

I've been told not to worry about it too much. This weekend, the oh so familiar 99° should be back. Oh, joy... it is almost October, right?

Wednesday, September 28, 2005

Calimari, Anyone?

This wee beastie would be enough to feed a small army... or my kids...

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The team led by Tsunemi Kubodera, from the National Science Museum in Tokyo, tracked the 26-foot long Architeuthis as it attacked prey nearly 3,000 feet deep off the coast of Japan's Bonin islands.

"We believe this is the first time a grown giant squid has been captured on camera in its natural habitat,'' said Kyoichi Mori, a marine researcher who co-authored a piece in Wednesday's issue of the Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences.
Um... how do you prepare giant squid? And... wouldn't it be tough? Or maybe a bit gamey?

One More and I'll Quit... Probably

Mother Moonbat Sheehan has graced the blogosphere with her writing skills once again, this time on The Huffington Post. (Spreading the love, I guess.)

For those of you who might have been napping the past couple of days, Mother Sheehan was arrested Monday during a protest outside of the White House. Here's a photo of her being carted away by some of DC's finest.

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She's in an awfully good mood for someone who's dragged to the pokey. Well, she decided that she needed to explain the reason for her giddiness.
First of all, I was having fun. I was with a group of good-humored, cheerful, happy people ... Secondly, when I got arrested and the officers lifted me out I was afraid that America would see my underwear and that tickled me...
You were afraid of WHAT? Cindy... no one WANTS to see your underwear... if you were so worried about that, why in the world didn't you wear shorts? Or... here's an idea... DON'T BREAK THE LAW!!!!

Just a thought... geeez... At least it wasn't this thought... that's just... nope... not gonna go there...

An Open Letter

This letter was posted over at Free Republic. The "Other Beth", a Lady of the Cotillion (where I got the link), not wanting to spread false tales, has verified that the writer is who she claims to be.

Residing in the same town as you once resided and knowing your family, I must ask you, "Whatever are you thinking?"

Your son was the one who encouraged my youngest son to enlist. You were very proud of Casey and what he was doing then and he believed very much in what he was doing.

After Casey was killed, my eldest was one of the local airmen who brought him home, facing hostile fire to do so, so you would not not have to wait.

My daughter comforted you and your family. You two spent hours and hours engaged in heartfelt grief. At that time, you were very, very supportive of the President, of our soldiers and of what was occurring in Iraq.

Cindy, you've changed since the Kerry campaign contacted you in early July of last summer. You're not the same grieving mom, especially after you started traveling on the road to support John Kerry's campaign.

You've turned into a political puppet for those who are exploiting you and its not pretty nor does it do anything for Casey's memory. You're not the same, quiet compassionate woman we saw at church or downtown, when you proudly sat as the entire town showed up on Memorial Day to honor Casey and Mike Williams.

How can you justify berating the President for honoring the soldiers who died while protecting America and following the directives of the Congress and the Senate? How can you consistently state that you don't want your son's name to be acknowledged by him and on the same hand, turn around and use the name of Joe Williams' Mike, as an example for your cause despite the many requests of the family for you not to do so? How could you print Mike's name in your anti-war advertisement in the newspaper even after seeing the grief and effort his mother went through to go to Crawford to personally remove it from your cross. You knew it caused them pain.

Mike died honorably and his father, a Vietnam vet is very proud of him. He believed in what he was doing, just like Casey. How could you bring so much pain to the Williams family and so much pain to a nation because of your own anger?

Cindy, how can you do this to your kids who don't know how to explain your actions to anyone here in town? They went through a lot last summer and still are.

The hours, days and weeks following Casey's death were emotionally gut wrenching as many of us with children, husbands, wives, friends and other loved ones in the military comforted you while living with the fears for our own loved ones over there. Everyone went above and beyond because we all believed and still believe in how very right, honorable and courageous our loved ones are in their mission to keep America safe.

We all went through considerable anguish when Casey died and I suspect none moreso than you. But how can you justify your anguish and place it on a higher level than that of Joe Williams?

The treatment you've returned to everyone is inexcusable. Placing Mike Williams' name on a cross despite the family's objections was unforgiveable and the reaction of Mike's mother when she saw it was heartbreaking.

What you are doing to neighbors, to friends, Casey's battle buddies and to a nation of people who are having to relieve the ugly pain of the late 60s and the 70s is unfair.

This is about you, Cindy. Not about anyone else. When you turn your back on your neighbors, your friends, your family and act in this manner, it only evidences that there is no consideration toward anyone or anything else.

Finally, and most disturbing, how can you support a group that supported John Kerry, who on April 7th, on National Public Radio stated that Al Sadr had a "legitimate voice" and that the Coalition (including your son) should not have closed down his newspaper after he called for the deaths of U.S. troops.

You know better than anyone else, Casey was killed in Sadr City by the Al Sadr militants. How can you join ranks with those who support the terrorist who called for the death of your son?

Its beyond me, Cindy, and something I suspect, someday in the future, you'll look back on and with considerable pain.

We don't want that for you. I believe you need to sit down and think about it long and hard. You are bringing so much pain to this nation and its people.

This is a powerful, moving letter. She knew Casey, knew how much he loved being in the military. And she knows how much Cindy is hurting those who loved her and her son.

Isn't Her 15 Minutes Up Yet?

Mother Sheehan is in the news today... again. I wish the media would just ignore her, but we know that will never happen. She's their latest Darling. Oh, joy...

First, we have her meeting with John McCain (RINO, AZ) (WHY oh WHY do these people agree to meet with her???). I'm not sure what either of them was hoping would come out of this meeting of the (tiny) minds, but they parted agreeing to disagree... or something like that.

Mother Sheehan was disappointed that her meeting with the "warmonger" didn't go better.
"He is a warmonger, and I'm not," Sheehan said after meeting with McCain. "I believe this war is not keeping America safer."
And, Cindy, you're entitled to your opinion, no matter how incredibly wrong you may be.

On the other hand, Senator Warmonger McCain wasn't thrilled with being lied to misled about who was in her little entourage.
McCain, R-Ariz., also seemed disappointed in the meeting, which he said had been misrepresented as including some of his constituents. Only one person in her small delegation has ties to the state, and that person no longer lives there.
Oh, yeah, Cindy... that's how you get people on your side... no, really... keep it up... and don't forget to stretch the truth about what you're told behind closed doors while you're at it.
Sheehan and McCain had met once before, shortly after the funeral of her son. Sheehan said Tuesday that McCain told her then that her son's death was "like his buddies in Vietnam" and that he feared their deaths were "for nothing." McCain, however, denied he made such a statement.
Way to make friends! First you threaten Hillary, and now this? Wow.

And... if that wasn't enough... Mother Sheehan has signed on with Speaking Matters LLC (a speakers bureau). That in itself is not a bad thing- I mean, I'm sure the first 14:59 minutes of her fame haven't been overly profitable for her (except the fact that her tour and campouts have been funded by... who?) It's... well... how do I put this? You know how some people are saying that she's been using her son's death for her own personal gain? Well... how far from the truth is it?
She said her contract with Speaking Matters, which has not yet disclosed how much a Sheehan appearance will cost, will help her "finally make some money ...'cause Casey's insurance money's going to run out pretty soon."
Yeah, yeah... I know... his life insurance money had to go somewhere, right? Why not to this righteous cause which she is SURE he'd support, right?

As always, the moonbats are having trouble with this whole "making money" thing... it's not something many of them are familiar with, evidently.
One student who supports Sheehan's activism said she thinks "it's admirable that she's not making any money, it shows that her incentives are true."

The student, who identified herself only as Andrea, said "what she's doing to bring attention to this cause, the fact that she's actually doing it, overrides any of my very drastic disagreements with it [Sheehan getting paid]."
Wow. "Drastic disagreements" with making money... earning a living. Oh, yeah... Andrea's a student... money grows in trust funds. (Sorry... hate to burst your bubble, but a lot of those "enlightened" students protesting this, that, or the other are trust fund kiddies rebelling against Mummy and Father. Either that, or their the poor kids sponging off of the trust fund kiddies because they can.)

Then there's this person who has some misguided ideas about... well... about a lot.
Andrea's friend, Megan Hanford, said it makes sense that Sheehan would start charging for appearances. "She can't work while she's traveling the country," Hanford said, "and she's lost any income that her son might have brought her."
Uh... any income her son might have brought her? You mean the son who enlisted and re-enlisted against his mother's wishes? You mean the son she threatened because of his enlistment? (My bad... she threatened to run him over with the car to keep him out of combat... my bad... and yes, I'm working on finding the link.- B) Why in the world would she expect one thin dime from him? (Yes, we are supposed to honor our parents and take care of them in their old age... she ain't old... and she has had other family to take care of her. ) To say that she needs to be paid because of the "income" she lost due to her son's death is... insane. Simply insane.

And, of course, we can't forget her "sacrifice", now, can we?
University of Maryland English professor Marilee Lindemann said she fully supports Sheehan making money from her speaking engagements. "She's given extraordinarily of herself, of her time," she said, "and I will point out that she sacrificed her child in service to this country."
This person is supposed to be an English professor? G-d save us from academicians! Let's go to the dictionary, shall we?
sacrifice (v) To forfeit (one thing) for another thing considered to be of greater value.
No, she didn't sacrifice her child in service to this country. She didn't consider what he did to be of greater value than her personal whims. She fought his service to this country. She proclaimed that this country isn't worth fighting for. She called the people who killed her son "freedom fighters." Yes, she has suffered a loss, but she had nothing to do with it. Her son made the ultimate sacrifice for our country. She sacrificed nothing, except perhaps the precious time she could have spent with him if she had chosen to support him instead of condemn his choices.

No, I don't begrudge her making money for speaking to groups. If people want to pay to listen to her ramble, more power to her. (I question their sanity, but... ) I don't like that she's gone through her son's insurance money to fight something he stood for, or that she continues to trample on his name and the names of all of the others who have died protecting our country.

*** To follow up on Cindy's "threat". Here's the quote from this transcript of the interview:
I begged Casey not to go. I told him I would take him to Canada. I told him I would run over him with a car, anything to get him not to go to that immoral war. And he said, “Mom, I wish I didn't have to, but I have to go.”
So, it wasn't really a threat so much as an offer to help him commit a court martialing offense.

Sunday, September 25, 2005

The Problem with State Religion

The Founding Fathers didn't think that having a state-run religion was a good idea. And... um... here's an example of why they were right...
The Supreme Court (of Denmark -B) rules that a church custodian's belief in reincarnation was not valid grounds for his excommunication.

The Ministry of Ecclesiastical Affairs had no right to excommunicate a defiant church custodian who maintains that there is room for faith in reincarnation in the Christian religion, the Supreme Court decided on Thursday.
So... The Supreme Court, who is in charge of interpreting law, is now also in charge of interpreting Scripture? This is not a good combination, especially if they can't interpret even the easy verses.
Inasmuch as it is appointed for men to die once, and after this, judgment. (Heb 9:27)
Makes sense to me. Maybe it's in the translation... does it say something else in Danish?

Flipper's Gone Rogue

The US military uses marine mammals. We all know that, right? What they're used for, exactly, we haven't been told. Now, some of them may or may not be missing.
It may be the oddest tale to emerge from the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. Armed dolphins, trained by the US military to shoot terrorists and pinpoint spies underwater, may be missing in the Gulf of Mexico.

Experts who have studied the US navy's cetacean training exercises claim the 36 mammals could be carrying 'toxic dart' guns. Divers and surfers risk attack, they claim, from a species considered to be among the planet's smartest. The US navy admits it has been training dolphins for military purposes, but has refused to confirm that any are missing.

This is just goofy. Do they think for one moment that the Navy doesn't have GPS on them? Do they think that the dolphins haven't been trained to return to base?
'My concern is that they have learnt to shoot at divers in wetsuits who have simulated terrorists in exercises. If divers or windsurfers are mistaken for a spy or suicide bomber and if equipped with special harnesses carrying toxic darts, they could fire,' he said. 'The darts are designed to put the target to sleep so they can be interrogated later, but what happens if the victim is not found for hours?'

Usually dolphins were controlled via signals transmitted through a neck harness. 'The question is, were these dolphins made secure before Katrina struck?' said Sheridan.

The mystery surfaced when a separate group of dolphins was washed from a commercial oceanarium on the Mississippi coast during Katrina. Eight were found with the navy's help, but the dolphins were not returned until US navy scientists had examined them.

Where they secured before the hurricane struck? This "expert" makes it sound like they swim around their pond in Louisiana with their "weapons harnesses" on... loaded with LIVE ammo. Oh, yeah... the Navy's gonna do THAT.

IF the Navy's dolphins were washed out to sea with the hurricane (like the ones from Mississippi), then they'll be found... they're not stupid animals. They're definitely smarter than these so-called "experts".


Jay Tea at Wizbang asks "What's in a name?" He's got a good point.
So, what should "we" call ourselves? That's a tough one.

I thought about "pro-freedom," but I disliked it. It's too vague for my tastes. It could mean anything, and therefore means nothing. I don't like that sort of thing. We need something clearer, more precise, perhaps with some historical context that truly captures the sentiment that we didn't choose to fight this war on terror, but dammit, we're gonna win it.

And then it hit me. Let the other side be "anti-war." If they choose not to recognize that the war started a long time ago, and we've only recently started fighting back, that's their stupidity. We have more important things to worry about than their whining and kvetching.

We're pro-VICTORY.

It's a good word. It says exactly what our goal is: to win, to defeat the enemy, to stop those out to destroy us and our way of life and impose their tyrannical vision on people.
Yeah... what he said... You'll notice a new button the sidebar. It's just a little reminder of where I stand. I'm pro-military, pro-freedom, and yes, pro-VICTORY. (thanks to North American Patriot for the code for this!)

Saturday, September 24, 2005

Semper Fi... Carry On...

Sorry... I'm sure R. Lee Ermey won't mind if I borrow his line. Not after he reads this story (h/t to Blackfive, who got it from Toni, who got it from the Freepers, who got it from OWH- which you have to register to see)...
Once Marine Gunnery Sgt. Michael Burghardt realized he could wiggle his toes and fingers, he had one message for the insurgents who wounded him - defiance.... As is often the case, Burghardt and his Explosive Ordnance Disposal team were accompanied to a bomb site Monday by the First Platoon, 167th Cavalry of the Nebraska National Guard.

One IED had blown up a Bradley fighting vehicle and killed a U.S. soldier. As often happens, the insurgents left behind more IEDs. Burghardt disarmed two bombs that were found - quick action that probably saved the lives of several Nebraska soldiers.

But he couldn't get to a third.

When word spread that the third device had been found, 167th Capt. Jeff Searcey of Kearney, 1st Lt. Matthew Misfeldt of Omaha and their men hit the ground as a blast exploded skyward.

Burghardt was wounded.

But with two new young Marines in his ordnance disposal unit - and the insurgent attackers undoubtedly looking on - "I didn't want them to see the team leader carried away on a stretcher," he said.

So after the Nebraskans tended to wounds that reached from his boot tops to the small of his back, Burghardt rose to his feet and reached back with a one-finger salute for his attackers...
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Burghardt, 35, wouldn't accept painkillers when he was brought back to camp by the Nebraskans. He knew he might need them later. And he's not looking to leave Ramadi for five more months.

"I don't want a ticket out," he said. "I want to stay here so we can take as many people home as possible."

Soldiers all the way up to the brigade's commander, Col. John Gronski, viewed a photo of Burghardt - on his feet, arm extended and middle finger raised - as the embodiment of the American warrior.

As for Burghardt, he said he wanted to send a message to the insurgents who failed to kill him.

"I knew there was somebody disappointed out there."
I'm sure someone will complain to the Omaha World Herald about publishing that photo. And they need to get a life. No, I don't want my kids doing that during PE or anything like that. But... I'm having a hard time working up any kind of offense about this.

Semper Fi, Gunny... Carry on!

Thursday, September 22, 2005

More Looting In NOLA

Oh, I'm sorry... he only "pilfered."
Police found cases of food, clothing and tools intended for hurricane victims at the home of the chief administrative officer for a New Orleans suburb, authorities said Wednesday.

Officers searched Cedric Floyd's home because of complaints that city workers were helping themselves to donations for hurricane victims. Floyd, who runs the day-to-day operations in the suburb of Kenner, was in charge of distributing the goods.

Police plan to seek a charge of committing an illegal act as a public official against Floyd, and more charges against other city workers are possible, police Capt. Steve Caraway said.

The donations filled a large pickup truck four times. "It was an awful lot of stuff," Caraway said.

The donated materials must be processed as evidence but eventually will be distributed to victims. "We have lots of families that are begging for these supplies," said Attorney General Charles Foti, whose office assisted in the investigation.

Attempts to reach Floyd were unsuccessful at home numbers listed under his name in Kenner. His office number went unanswered after business hours.

Philip Ramon, chief of staff to Kenner Mayor Philip Capitano, has said city officials were investigating the alleged pilfering but added that many employees were themselves hurricane victims.
I don't give a rat's rump if he was a hurricane victim. He didn't need FOUR trucks full of supplies. One family does NOT need that much clothes, that many tools, or that much food and water. Not when there are so many others who still have next to nothing.

What makes it sad is that, given everything else we've seen in that state, this just really doesn't surprise me. (h/t to Denita)

They Could Come Live With Me!

OK, maybe not all of them, but... I'm sure I could find good homes for some of these little guys.
The Humane Society of Weld County is crawling with Corgis. The society is caring for 54 of the short-legged dogs, which were confiscated last week from a dog breeder. Stephanie Stokes, 61, pleaded guilty to one count of animal cruelty and agreed to surrender most of her dogs... Clink says the dogs are all generally healthy and should be fairly easy to place. "They're a very social dog. They love to be touched and played with." The Corgis range in age from 3 months to 20 years. They will be spayed or neutered before they are put up for adoption. A few of the dogs will be available Tuesday, but it will be several weeks before they're all ready for adoption. The adoption fee is $100.
Only $100? Obviously the Humane Society doesn't realize that they could probably cover this year's entire budget by selling these dogs at retail.

I'm telling ya... if I wouldn't have to drive to Colorado to pick up the Corgis...

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

You're Stuck on Stupid

(h/t to Lord Spatula I, K&T and Radio Blogger) Lt. General Russel Honore is an extremely articulate man. And immensely intelligent man. How do I know that? Well, anyone who looks at a reporter and says:
Honore: You are stuck on stupid. I'm not going to answer that question.
Radio Blogger points out that this might be the start of a movement... bumper stickers, rubber bracelets, the whole thing. I love it. I'll take a t-shirt, please.

I just have one question... FoxNews just reported what the good General had to say when he first found out that Hurricane Rita was upgraded to Cat 5. Just how scared should Galveston be if General Honore says that it gives him "the creeps" ?????

Give That Pilot a Raise!

Well, the JetBlue pilot that safely landed the Airbus at LAX after the front landing gear mysteriously turned sideways deserves a hefty bonus. And a vacation. And a stiff drink. Not necessarily in that order.
A JetBlue airliner with 146 people aboard made an emergency landing at Los Angeles International Airport on Wednesday, dragging its crippled nose gear down the runway in a hail of sparks and smoke before coming safely to rest.
It was impressive...
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Only one thing. Evidently, JetBlue is one of the only airlines that have DirecTV, so the passengers on Flight 292 got to watch the entire thing on tv. That had to be just a bit freaky.

Breaking News!

FoxNews is reporting that a Jet Blue flight is dumping fuel over the Pacific. It has damaged landing gear and will attempt a soft landing at Burbank Airport. This is going to be... scary...

Tuesday, September 20, 2005

The Red... Crystal?

Political correctness allowed to go to its logical conclusion.
The Red Cross and its Islamic cousin, the Red Crescent, could soon be joined by a Red Crystal. The move is an attempt to create a neutral emblem in an age of growing religious strife... National symbols such as the Shield of David could be incorporated into the red crystal.
I guess no one told them that crystals are used in New Age religions. Or is that the point?

This Is Just... Insane!

What do George W. Bush, Nicolae Ceausescu, and Adolf Hitler have in common? Evidently, they're all animal lovers...
Posters featuring them with the slogan: "A dog loves you just the way you are" are appearing on billboards across the country....

Ioana Casetti, the president of the Romanian National Committee for the Protection of Animals, said: "Our idea is to make people sensitive to what an animal can offer in terms of affection by showing them that even the most hated dictators on this planet received love from their dogs.
"Most hated dictators on this planet"? Idiots. One of these guys is not like the others. Maybe they should actually look at the facts before they start comparing those three.

Well... I know one place where we can cut the budget to finance Katrina clean-up.

Monday, September 19, 2005

Not to Worry Mom or Anything...

But doesn't this mean that we're gonna get drenched this weekend?

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Somebody refresh my memory... how does one prepare for a hurricane when you're 3 hours inland? I mean... no worry about storm surge or anything...

eh... we'll probably just get enough rain to have muddy puppy paw prints all over the kitchen and knock all the blooms off of my roses.

But... you have to know that someone in Houston is trying to figure out which one of their newest residents is the hurricane magnet...

Saturday, September 17, 2005


Here's a few little things I found in the news today:

Friday, September 16, 2005

Well, That Took a Lot of Courage!

Just exactly how courageous does someone have to be to post a comment on a blog anonymously, saying that the author is racist?

Yup. I'm a racist, according to Anonymous. Well, Annie... can I call you Annie?... you are out of your gourd. You can ask anyone who knows me (start with my dad), and they'll tell you just how unracist I am.

To play a little catch-up, Annie was reading through my archives, and she came across this post, where I said I was going to boycott Jack in the Box because they have Spanish language commercials on English channels. Evidently, I offended Annie's sensibilities, and she left this comment:
That doesn't sound jingoistic, it sounds racist.
I was going to just leave a comment, but... it's back in the archives, and the odds of Annie checking on the comment thread again were about nil, and I wanted to make my point perfectly clear. And I'm in a bit of a mood.

I'm not a racist. I'm not against legal immigration. I'm not against people maintaining their cultural heritage if they choose to move to our great nation. I'm against people refusing to conform to the basics of civil decency and learning to speak the common language!

When I visited Germany, I lucked out because many of the people I encountered had learned English. I did, however, have my handy dandy pocket dictionary, just in case (and I had the all important "Where's the bathroom?" memorized). I turned on the tv once, but... all the shows and commercials were in... wait for it... German. For some reason, the Germans didn't realize that they needed to cater to my whims.

Amazingly, the same thing happened in the Czech Republic. And again in Austria. Not to mention Hungary and Slovakia. Even in Wales, I could only make out about half of what was said. The only place I could understand anything over there was in England, and they didn't even get everything right (potato chips are... get this... "crisps" and "chips" are french fries... what's up with that? And, evidently, the song "Skip to my loo" means you're running to the bathroom.)

All of that to say that it doesn't matter that the commercial I was annoyed at was in Spanish. It could have been in Dutch (sorry, Delfts), or Russian, or Mandarin Chinese or Urdu or Basque or Esperanto or Gaelic or Tagalog. It's the fact that the commercial was not in the common language of the country!!!!

And, since Jack in the Box is still airing the commercial, looks like I still won't be buying a Sourdough Jack or their yummy onion rings anytime soon.

But, you know, this really isn't about that commercial. It's about Annie not having enough guts to at least write her name. If you feel so strongly that my statements were racist, you should have enough courage of your convictions to let us know who you are.

Exactly What Color is Cyan?

you are lightcyan

Your dominant hues are green and blue. You're smart and you know it, and want to use your power to help people and relate to others. Even though you tend to battle with yourself, you solve other people's conflicts well.

Your saturation level is very low - you have better things to do than jump headfirst into every little project. You make sure your actions are going to really accomplish something before you start because you hate wasting energy making everyone else think you're working.

Your outlook on life is very bright. You are sunny and optimistic about life and others find it very encouraging, but remember to tone it down if you sense irritation.
the html color quiz

Blah blah blah... what's scary is that it does sound a lot like me... I do better at solving other people's problems than my own... I really dislike doing pointless tasks (ie mopping the kitchen floor just before it rains). And, yeah... I can be Little Miss Sunshine at times...

But... light cyan? It's so... pale... bleh... (h/t to Kate)

Cody, Part 5

In the last installment, Stacy talks about the funeral, the trial, and the insanity that is the University of Wyoming.

Why Will He Not Just Go Away?!?!?

(h/t to Delftsman) Michael Crook is back. Y'all might remember him. He's the nice young gentleman who posted the picture of the disabled Marine on his "Forsake the Troops" site a while back. Well, his new version of FtT is "Oppose the Troops."

His goal is to protest and suggest reforms to the pay structure of the military. Evidently, he thinks soldiers (whose families have to turn to welfare to have enough food to eat) are paid WAY too much. His solution? Don't pay them at all. Let them fend for themselves.

And, according to this dingbat, the military doesn't protect our freedoms- that's just "propaganda." He thinks we'd do better with a "every man for himself" approach. Oh, yeah... that'll work. Really.

You know... I'd love for Crook to spend a couple of weeks with some of another Michael's friends. I'm sure the fine men of Deuce Four could provide him with the proper attitude adjustment.

"Occupied" New Orleans?

Mother Sheehan hasn't disappeared like we all hoped. She just posted on Mikey the Hutt's site, and... she's still a few fries short of a Happy Meal. This is just screaming to be Fisked...
It has been one month and one week since I sat in a ditch in Crawford, Tx. I can hardly believe it when I think of it myself. So much has happened in that time, and really, so little.

I got to Camp Casey III in Covington, La today, after getting up at 3am to head for the airport. Now it is 3am the next day and we are driving in a car to try and find a hotel to sleep anywhere around Jackson, Miss. I was prepared to be shocked by what I saw in Louisiana, but I guess one can never really fully prepare for such devastation and tragedy. After living in a country your entire life it is so difficult to see such callous indifference on an immense scale. When I reflect on how the mother of the imbecile who is running our country said that the people who are in the Astrodome are happy to be there, it angers me beyond comparison. The people in LA who were displaced have nice, if modest homes that are perfectly fine. I wonder why the government made them leave at great expense and uproot families who have been living in their communities for generations.
Perfectly fine? Those people who went to the Astrodome were happy to be there... they had NOTHING left in NOLA. Their homes are GONE.
After we arrived at Camp Casey III, we took the Veterans for Peace "Impeachment Tour Bus" into New Orleans after stopping at the distribution center to pick up some supplies in Covington. The stench and the destruction are unbelievable.(funny... I figured it would smell a lot like Camp Casey... I mean, well... n'er mind... -B) I saw some hurricane zones in the panhandle of Florida last year that were pretty bad but that couldn't have prepared me for this.

I saw in the paper that George Bush said the recovery in the Gulf States would be "hard work." That's what he said about sending troops to Iraq and looking at the casualty reports everyday: "It's hard work." That man has never known a day of hard work in his life. (and you know this how?- B) The people on the ground in Covington scoffed at George's little junket to Louisiana yesterday. He stayed in the French Quarter and a Ward that weren't even damaged a bit. (uh... have you actually looked at the French Quarter? It might not be destroyed, but there was plenty of damage. -B) The VFP took me to the city of Algiers on the West Bank. The part of Algiers we went to was very poor and black. The people of Algiers know what hard work is.
So, you have to be poor and black to know what hard work is, evidently. You can't have money and know what it's like to work. You can't be white... or Hispanic... or Oriental... or... or... Only poor black people have a clue what it means to work hard. Uh... gimme a break.
Algiers had no flooding. All of the damage was from winds. There are trees knocked over and shingles off of roofs. There are signs blown over and there was a dead body lying on the ground for 2 weeks before someone finally came to get it. (and never before have those things ever happened because of a hurricane. - B) Even though Algiers came through Katrina relatively unscathed, our federal government tried to force (mostly successfully) the people out of the community. Malik Rahim, a new friend of ours and resident of Algiers, told us stories of the days after the hurricane. The government declared martial law, but there was no effective police presence to enforce it. Malik said the lawlessness was rampant. People were running out of food and water and they were being forced to go to the Superdome. They didn't want to go to the Superdome, because their homes were pretty intact: they wanted to stay and have food and water brought to them.
Brought to them? No... you get up off your rear and go GET IT YOURSELF. If they wanted to stay, they should have stocked up before the storm rolled in. If they wanted to stay, they shouldn't have waited for someone to take care of them. If they wanted to stay, they should have realized that they would have to take care of themselves.

But, no. Not in today's Nanny State. Why should anyone take care of themselves when Uncle Sam will take care of everything?
A town of 76,000 people dwindled down to 3,000. The die hards were rewarded last Wednesday when the VFP rolled into town with food and water. The Camp Casey III people were the first ones to bring any relief to Algiers. The people who were supposed to look after its citizens, our government, failed them.
No, Cindy. Our government isn't supposed to look after these people... their local government is supposed to have emergency plans in place. Not the feds... the local and state government. The feds are just there for backup.
...One thing that truly troubled me about my visit to Louisiana was the level of the military presence there. I imagined before that if the military had to be used in a CONUS (Continental US) operations that they would be there to help the citizens: Clothe them, feed them, shelter them, and protect them. But what I saw was a city that is occupied. I saw soldiers walking around in patrols of 7 with their weapons slung on their backs. I wanted to ask one of them what it would take for one of them to shoot me. Sand bags were removed from private property to make machine gun nests.
Machine gun nests? Yes, the soldiers carry weapons. Guess what? Their job is to KILL PEOPLE AND BREAK THINGS. Your son, Casey, had a job- to kill people and break things. Carrying their weapons is part of that job. That they are doing a "humanitarian" mission is the exception, not the rule. (Yes, there are units in the military who have purely humanitarian roles... medics... search and rescue...) They are in NOLA, carrying their weapons (making their "machine gun nests"... would you know what one looks like, Cindy?) because a group of NOLA residents decided that it would be fun to crawl into complete and total anarchy. They were sent in to get rid of the bad guys that are giving NOLA a bad (well, worse) name.
The vast majority of people who were looting in New Orleans were doing so to feed their families or to get resources to get their families out of there.
So... what is the best way to serve plasma televisions? Grilled? Or baked with a white wine sauce? I don't remember anyone complaining about people looting the grocery stores or the convenient stores. No one even complained when folks "borrowed" vehicles to get out of Dodge. It's when the high-end electronics and the clothes and the appliances began growing legs and wandering off that people became concerned. When the pharmacies were robbed of every imaginable medication (OTC and prescription), I seriously doubt that anyone thought those nice young gents were merely picking up Aunt Hazel's blood pressure meds. (Wonder what one could get for a bottle of Oxycontin in NOLA these days... or maybe some good meth mixed from all of those cold meds.) I mean, really... does the average family of five need 87 pairs of Nikes, 6 big screen tvs, 17 bottles of narcotic pain pills, and 8 toasters during a flood?
If I had a store with an inventory of insured belongings, and a tragedy happened, I would fling my doors open and tell everyone to take what they need: it is only stuff.
Dang... you knew she'd have to say something almost intelligent. I agree, IF I had a grocery store. Best Buy? Don't hold your breath.
When our fellow citizens are told to "shoot to kill" other fellow citizens because they want to stay alive, that is military and governmental fascism gone out of control.
No, what you have when citizens are told to "shoot to kill" other fellow citizens, you have an example of lawlessness and the only way to combat it. What do you think police officers are faced with each and every day? This is just a common inner city war between the cops and the thugs being played out on a larger stage for the world to see.
What I saw today in Algiers lifted up my spirits, but what I also saw today in Algiers frightened me terribly.

The people who are running the clinic in Algiers gave me a list of desperately needed supplies:

Blood pressure medication---properly packaged.
Allergy medication---properly packaged
Vitamin B
Pens, paper, sharpies, index cards
Glucometers and test strips
Full O2 tanks
Power strips and extension cords
Non-DEET insect repellent
Mini bottles of Hand Sanitizer
A copy machine is urgently needed
People: Call: 512-297-1049

Send supplies to:
Fed Ex or UPS
Veterans for Peace Ch 116
C/O 645 Kimbro Dr.
Baton Rouge, La. 70808

Mark them: For the Medical Clinic in Algiers

The children in Algiers have also been out of school. Malik would like to open a school and they need school supplies and teachers.
I have no problem with sending supplies to these people who are trying to get things done in an area where their local and state government failed them. I do have a problem with the VFP being involved, but I'm willing to go along with it anyway. As for the phone number listed for volunteers... it's an Austin number... go figure...
I have a testimony from a Doctor that came to Louisiana to help that I will post tomorrow. The failure in every level of our government is criminal negligence. Tens of thousands of families in our country have been devastated because of the incompetence and callousness of our so-called leadership. America is stepping up to the plate to help Americans. America stepped up to the plate to hold George accountable for the abomination in Iraq. One thing George has taught us is that we are self-sufficient and we have a country that is worth fighting for and we are not going away.
Yes, there were problems at every level. If you're going to blame FEMA, then you also have to blame the governor and mayor. Are you willing to cast blame on your Democrat friends, Cindy? If you're intellectually honest, you will... but I won't hold my breath...

And, you're right... Americans are helping Americans... not because of Bush's failure (I'd love to know how Mike Brown's incompetence is Bush's fault, but I digress), but because it's what we do. It's who we are. We are self-sufficient and our country is worth fighting for (uh... Cindy... didn't you recently say that it's NOT worth fighting for? ). Bush didn't teach us that. We've known that from the very beginning.
I was told that Pat Boone was on a conservative radio talk show in San Francisco (yes they do exist) with Melanie Morgan (who has a vendetta against me) and he told the listeners that after we "stole the supplies" from the Red Cross, we gave them to the "enemies of America who are like the people who want to fly airplanes into our buildings." Boone says that we were giving them to enemies of America, because we were distributing the supplies from a Mosque. First of all, accusing me of stealing is slander, I think, and second of all: we were helping Americans. Just because their government abandoned them, we shouldn't feed them and give them medicine and supplies? I thought Pat Boone was supposed to be a Christian man? Thirdly, isn't Freedom of Religion one of our Constitutional guarantees?
Geez... I don't even know where to begin. I'm sure Ms. Morgan has a vendetta against you, just like every other Zionist neo-con... I mean... we're all evil and want you dead or something, right? And... well... you said that you picked up those supplies from a "distribution center"... who else has distribution centers there besides FEMA, the Salvation Army and the Red Cross? Whether or not you stole them or offered to transport them is another story... I don't know...

Reality check, Cindy... we are at war with militant Islamists, and those fanatics are being financed, in part, by mosques in this country. I'm sure Mr. Boone is not opposed to getting food and medical supplies to people who need them. This has nothing to do with freedom of religion.
It is a Christ-like principal to feed the hungry, clothe the naked, and shelter the homeless. That's what is happening in Algiers and other places in Louisiana…but by the people of America, not the so-called "Christians" in charge. If George Bush truly listened to God and read the words of the Christ, Iraq and the devastation in New Orleans would have never happened.
Yup, feeding the poor, clothing the naked, and sheltering the homeless is very Christ-like. And it's happening all over the country. By a whole lot of Christians and people of all different faiths.

Would you please explain to me how President Bush reading the Bible would have stopped the hurricane from hitting the Gulf Coast or flooding NOLA. How could the President's Bible study have prevented Saddam Hussein from being a murderous tyrant who supported terrorism? NOLA flooding because levees failed. Levees that should have been made stronger with funds sent to the state by Washington. Funds that ended up lining the pockets of corrupt politicians in NOLA and Baton Rouge. Iraq was liberated from tyranny because it was the right thing to do.
I don't care if a human being is black, brown, white, yellow or pink. I don't care if a human being is Christian, Muslim, Jew, Buddhist, or pagan. I don't care what flag a person salutes: if a human being is hungry, then it is up to another human being to feed him/her. George Bush needs to stop talking, admit the mistakes of his all around failed administration, pull our troops out of occupied New Orleans and Iraq, and excuse his self from power. The only way America will become more secure is if we have a new administration that cares about Americans even if they don't fall into the top two percent of the wealthiest.
Once again, she starts saying something almost intelligent, and then corrects herself. Yes... it is our responsibility to help others. And, the President has accepted responsibility for the mistakes of his administration (as opposed to other Presidents I can think of in the recent past).

But... but... "occupied New Orleans"???? The woman has completely lost it. Not recently, but... this is just more proof.

I just wonder. Does she think that a Kerry administration (I shudder to even write that) would have been more caring about Americans who don't fall into the top two percent of the wealthiest. I mean... the Ketchup Queen is one of those top two percent... and many of their supporters are part of that particular two percent... just sayin'...

This is Gross

And cat lovers may never forgive me for posting this, but...
A German inventor says he's found a way to make cheap diesel fuel out of dead cats.

Dr Christian Koch, 55, from Kleinhartmannsdorf, said his method uses old tyres, weeds and animal cadavers.

They are heated up to 300 Celsius to filter out hydrocarbon which is then turned into diesel by a catalytic converter.

He said the resulting "high quality bio-diesel" costs just 15 pence per litre.

Koch said the cadaver of a fully grown cat can produce 2.5 litres of fuel - meaning around 20 cats are needed for a full tank.

He said, "I tank my car with my own diesel mixture and have driven it for 105,000 miles without any problems."

Annelise Krauss of the Dresden Animal Protection Association blasted Koch's new diesel though, saying, "This is as bad as experimenting on animals."
I really don't want to know where he gets the cats from... really...

Thursday, September 15, 2005

Teeheehee... this is funny...
I loved the letters you printed about misinterpreting the Lord's Prayer. When my twin daughters were young, I taught them to say this prayer before going to bed. As I listened outside their door, I could hear them say, "Give us this steak and daily bread, and forgive us our mattresses." My husband and I always had a good laugh over this. That was over 50 Years ago, and the memory still remains in my heart.

From San Francisco: When I was a child, I learned this prayer as "Our Father, who are in Heaven, Howard be Thy name." I always thought that was God's real name.

Groton, Mass: My mother spent her early childhood saying, "Hail Mary, full of grapes."

Missoula, Mont: My son, who is in nursery school, said, "Our Father, who art in Heaven, how didja know my name?"

Uniontown, Ohio: I remember thinking this prayer was "Give us this day our jelly bread."

Covina, Calif: I recall reading something years ago about the Pledge of Allegiance. Some child thought it began, "I led The pigeons to the flag."

Cleveland, Ohio: When I was little, I often wondered who Richard Stands was. You know: "I pledge allegiance to the flag and to the republic for Richard Stands."

Schenectady, NY: I once knew a child whose favorite Sunday school song was "Gladly, the Cross-Eyed Bear." (gladly the Cross I Bear).

Tampa, Fla: When my husband was 6 years old, he thought a certain prayer was "He suffered under a bunch of violets." The real words were "under Pontius Pilate," but at that age, he didn't know better. To this day, we still snicker in church whenever that Prayer is read.

Lake Forest Park, Wash: When I was a little girl, we sang a song in Sunday school about Noah. Part of the chorus was "And the rains came down, and the floods came up." We lived next door to a couple of charming little girls who always sang this song while playing in their garden. Their words were, "And the rains came down, and the spuds came up."

Oak Harbor, Wash: When my older brother was very young, he always walked up to the church altar with my mother when she took communion. On one occasion, he tugged at her arm and asked, "What does the priest say when he gives you the bread?" Mom whispered something in his ear. Imagine his shock many years later when he learned that the priest doesn't say, "Be quiet until you get to your seat."

Grand Junction, Colo: When I was younger, I believed the line was "Lead a snot into temptation." I thought I was praying for my little sister to get into trouble.

Hello? Is This Thing On?

Yeah... I know... I've been MIA on the blog. Well, I didn't really want to do more Blame Game about Katrina (but, you know, Mayor Nagin is "tired" of hearing the choppers... he wants to hear some jazz. Uh... Mayor... those helicopters saved thousands of your constituents. Get over it. Buy a cd if you want to listen to jazz.) And the Roberts' hearing is just goofy (we now know that Judge Roberts liked Dr. Zhivago and North by Northwest. And we know that Biden and Schumer are idiots... but, wait... we already knew that.) And, there's just that much else going on.

Except for one thing. This past Monday, I started Lordex therapy for my back. (I have a chronic lower back condition.) I had seen the Lordex commercials on tv, and I thought, 'Hey, that's cool. But I'm sure insurance won't cover it, so... oh, well.' T2 finally talked me into calling and checking into it. Woohoo! Insurance does cover it (with a copay).

Here's how it works. When you first get there, you spend about 15 minutes on the strength machine (which strengthens the muscles right around the spine in the lumbar region). It's not painful... but it's a workout, that's for sure. Then a harness is placed on your hips, and you get onto the Decompression machine. It looks like a modern version of a medieval torture rack, but... honestly... it feels GREAT. I mean... if you have compressed disks, having the vertebrae that have been squishing the disks pulled apart is a wonderful thing. That lasts about 30 minutes, then it's back on the strength machine for a couple of minutes with no resistance to stretch those muscles.

This week, I'm going every day. Then I'll go 3x/week for 2 months. After that, I'll have to do exercises to keep the muscles toned so that they can support my lumbar spine (since my disks are not quite doing their job any more).

Cody, Part 4

In today's post, Stacy shares the horrible details of Cody's death. So sad... so pointless...

Wednesday, September 14, 2005

More Cody Blogging

This week, Stacy is doing a series on her nephew, Cody, who lost his life because of a drunk driver a few days after 9/11. Today, we hear about his love of sports, and his love of God.

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

Blogging For Cody, Part 2

Today, Stacy talks about the kind of guy her nephew was. A kid I would have liked to know.

The Cotillion

It's Tuesday, and that means that it's time to put on your dancing shoes. The Ladies of The Cotillion have put together another wonderful romp through the blogosphere. The hostesses this week are Mary Katherine Ham, Deb at TFS Magnum, Claire at e-Claire, and Portia of Portia Rediscovered.

Thanks, Ladies! You've outdone yourselves once again!

Monday, September 12, 2005

Blogging For Cody

This week, Stacy, part of the Cotillion, is doing a series of posts about her nephew, Cody, and his friends. They were killed by a drunk driver four years ago.
This Friday, September 16th, marks the fourth anniversary of my nephew's death. He and seven of his friends from the University of Wyoming men's cross country track team were killed by one drunk driver.

This entire week I'm devoting my blog to Cody and his friends. I'm not even sure where to begin. My hope for this week is to try once again to make people recognize the dangers of drinking and driving and the impact it makes upon society.
Her message this week is quite the no-brainer- don't drink and drive. It's such a simple message- why don't we get it?

Here is today's post. I'll put up a link each day for the new one.

Sunday, September 11, 2005

A Somber Anniversary

4 years ago today, 19 terrorists hijacked four planes, and the rest is history. Two of the planes slammed into the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center. One crashed into the Pentagon. And one, Flight 93, crashed into a Pennsylvania field when the passengers fought back. This coordinated attack will go down in history as the beginning of the international War on Terror, a war that will go on for years, if not decades.

For a while, everyone waved their flags and vowed to "Never Forget." That lasted for a time. Then, for various reasons, that began to fade. It's not that we forgot, per say... life just went on. We drop off items for care packages for the troops, we say a prayer for those who are in the fight... and then we go on with our business.

But... we can't forget. There is a group of people who want nothing more than to destroy our way of life and put in its place their extreme view of their religion. They want to erase who and what makes us unique in the United States of America. This isn't a war between two armies... this is a war between two ideologies, two cultures.

We can't forget that, to our enemies, there is no such thing as an innocent bystander.

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To them, we are all evil.

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To them, we are weak and unable to fight them and their god.

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To them, we are infidels who have no moral compass to guide us.

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And they are wrong. We will not forget. Admiral Yamamoto, after the attack on Pearl Harbor, said,"I fear all we have done is to awaken a sleeping giant and fill him with a terrible resolve."

9/11 woke us up once again. I pray we stay awake until the job is done.

(all photos were found here and here, and are copyrighted by those sites or as listed on those sites(AP, Reuters, or the original creators)

Friday, September 09, 2005

Yeah, Yeah, I Know

Sorry about the light posting the last couple of days. Like almost everyone else, I have more than a bit of Katrina overload, and there isn't all that much else out there.

One thing that's been bugging me is the whole thing about photographing the dead. No, it's not a matter of freedom of the press. It IS about decency. We know that people died... we don't need to see their bodies as proof.

The Blame Game is getting old. Michael Brown has been pulled from the rescue/recovery effort, and Vice Adm. Thad Allen is taking over. (I really don't think it was Brown's fault, but... someone's got to fall on the sword, right?) There will be plenty of time for figuring out what went wrong later. It doesn't have to be right now. There will plenty of commissions and investigations and who-know's-what-else. (Really, what they need to do is establish a bloggers' commission- I think some of the big guns have it researched and fact-checked already.)

To quote T1- " Enough with the finger pointing. Go do something." Dang, that kid's smart.

Wednesday, September 07, 2005

Oh, For the Love...

Just listening to FoxNews (go figure)... Blanco and Nagin are STILL not on the same page...

Nagin has issued a mandatory evacuation order for NOLA, and, once the people who want to get out are rescued, then they'll go back and forcibly remove everyone else. Bloody well about time, right?

Well... Governess Blanco wants to wait until there are tests on the water before she will agree to enforce that order.

Uh... um... there already have been tests... almost every kind of nasty water-borne bacteria you can imagine is partying in NOLA right now. Several people have already died of bacterial infections due to this hurricane. There is raw sewage and dead bodies (human and otherwise) decaying in the water. You don't need more test. NOLA is deadly right now.

What is the procedure for the Legislature of the great state of Louisiana to toss this chick on her rump? First, she didn't issue evac orders until the President begged her... then, she (or her state Homeland Security people) wouldn't let the Red Cross in... then, she took 24 hours to "think about" decisions that impact the lives of thousands... and so on... and so on...

Governor... those people need to leave... NOW!

One Flaw

Yeah... this is old... but... it's still good. With all of the Katrina coverage lately, I decided that we needed something a little lighter... but very important... (thanks for sending it, Mom!)
One Flaw In Women

By the time the Lord made woman, He was into his sixth day of working overtime.
An angel appeared and said, "Why are you spending so much time on this one?"
And the Lord answered, "Have you seen my spec sheet on her? She has to be completely washable, but not plastic, have over 200 movable parts, all replaceable and able to run on diet coke and leftovers, have a lap that can hold four children at one time, have a kiss that can cure anything from a scraped knee to a broken heart -and she will do everything with only two hands."
The angel was astounded at the requirements. "Only two hands!? No way! And that's just on the standard model? That's too much work for one day. Wait until tomorrow to finish."
"But I won't," the Lord protested. "I am so close to finishing this creation that is so close to my own heart. She already heals herself when she is sick AND can work 18 hours a day."
The angel moved closer and touched the woman. "But you have made her so soft, Lord."
"She is soft," the Lord agreed, "but I have also made her tough. You have no idea what she can endure or accomplish."
"Will she be able to think?", asked the angel.
The Lord replied, "Not only will she be able to think, she will be able to reason and negotiate."
The angel then noticed something, and reaching out, touched the woman's cheek. "Oops, it looks like you have a leak in this model. I told you that you were trying to put too much into this one."
"That's not a leak," the Lord corrected, "that's a tear!"
"What's the tear for?" the angel asked.
The Lord said, "The tear is her way of expressing her joy, her sorrow, her pain, her disappointment, her love, her loneliness, her grief and her pride."
The angel was impressed. "You are a genius, Lord. You thought of everything! Woman is truly amazing."

And she is!

Women have strengths that amaze men. They bear hardships and they carry burdens, but they hold happiness, love, and joy. They smile when they want to scream. They sing when they want to cry. They cry when they are happy and laugh when they are nervous.

They fight for what they believe in. They stand up to injustice. They don't take "no" for an answer when they believe there is a better solution.

They go without so their family can have. They go to the doctor with a frightened friend. They love unconditionally. They cry when their children excel and cheer when their friends get awards.

They are happy when they hear about a birth or a wedding. Their hearts break when a friend dies. They grieve at the loss of a family member, yet they are strong when they think there is no strength left. They know that a hug and a kiss can heal a broken heart.

Women come in all shapes, sizes, and colors. They'll drive, fly, walk, run, or e-mail you to show how much they care about you.

The heart of a woman is what makes the world keep turning. They bring joy, hope and love. They have compassion and ideals. They give moral support to their family and friends. Women have vital things to say and everything to give.


A Great Quote

I just heard this on FoxNews (it's a paraphrase, but I'm going to get as close as I can).
"I've heard 'what is the government going to do?' and 'what is the military going to do?'. Well, it's your turn. What are YOU going to do? What have YOU done to help a displaced person? Now's YOUR chance to do something." Lieutenant General Russell Honore
Well, folks... the Ragin' Cajun has spoken... what are you going to do?

Tuesday, September 06, 2005

Cotillion Time

Once again, it's time for the Cotillion. Time for the Ladies of the 'Sphere to put their dancing shoes on and have a little fun.

The round-ups can be found at RightGirl's place, Merri's house, Stacey's hideaway, and Annika's oasis.

Go check out what we've been up to.

Sunday, September 04, 2005

Blog Sabbath

No posting today... I'm sure there will be plenty to talk about tomorrow (the death of Justice Rehnquist, the continuing evacuations in NO, the latest edition of the Blame Game, etc.)

Today, hug your family... maybe watch a little football... write a check to a charity... take some supplies to a shelter... bring a little love into someone's life...

Saturday, September 03, 2005

Happy Birthday, Boys!

Today, T1 and T2 turn 12. Yikes!!! They can't be twelve. Can they?

Blogging will be light until Tuesday. Birthday stuff. You understand. Right?

Happy Birthday, Guys!

Provided With (Almost) No Comment

The Commissar has an interesting list of blogger response to Katrina and the rescue efforts.

As the title says, that link is provided with almost no comment. I need to make one or two. First, the Commissar (and I, as well) is not saying that the Left did nothing in the Relief effort. I know that they have raised thousands of dollars. I know that they are volunteering their time. But that's not the point.

There will be time to take this apart and analyze this. There will be time to figure out who dropped the ball (and, yes, I've done some of it myself... only when I felt it was blatantly obvious.) Now is not that time.

The Left takes every opportunity to blame Bu$HitlerCheneyHaliburtonZionists. There is so much... hatred... too much for me.

Friday, September 02, 2005

Favoritism in NO

(just saw this on the news- sorry, no link yet)Well... evidently there is some favoritism going on in the rescue efforts in New Orleans. Thousands of people are waiting at the Superdome and the convention center. Thousands on the overpasses, waiting for rescue. Buses went, on the order of the MAYOR of NO, to the Hyatt to pick up a group of tourists. Those buses took these tourists to the Superdome, where the MAYOR of NO ordered that they be put at the front of the line to get out of town.

Also just on the news... the President declared an emergency before Katrina made landfall to get supplies and manpower in position in case the governors of the affected states requested help. After Katrina made landfall, Gov. Blanco didn't pull the trigger. What she had in place was ineffective, and she hesitated just a bit too long.

One more tidbit... Bill Hobbs has a photo of the bus fleet that the Mayor of NO could have used to get some of his poorer citizens out of NO. (It would have cost the city the cost of gas and hotel rooms for the drivers... big whoop.)

And, yet, somehow, all of this is Bush's fault... I'm not saying that members of FEMA and DHS did everything right- far from it. I just find it laughable that Bush is getting the blame for Nagin's and Blanco's lack of planning and blatant stupidity.

An Update on Bibles for Katrina Victims

A reader did a little research (thanks, Kris!), and found out that the American Bible Society is working on a plan to distribute Bibles, but in the meantime, they suggested contacting the Salvation Army Girls & Boys Club in Houston.

Here's the info:
Salvation Army Girls and Boy Club
9601 W Montgomery Rd
Houston TX 77088
Attn: Alesia Anderson

I know that people are contributing in all kinds of ways, but... once their physical needs are met, we need to see to it that their spiritual and emotional needs are met, as well.

Observations on Katrina

There are so many things running through my mind about the hurricane and the chaos that has followed... here are some of them...
What you don't see much on the news is what's happening throughout the rest of the Gulf Coast. People are returning to the area, beginning to clean up. Volunteers have come from Florida to help, in the same way that people from Mississippi and Alabama came to their aid last year after the hurricanes. They are picking up the pieces, and they are carrying on.

NO is 90% non-functioning (according to the mayor). IF they can pick up the pieces, it will be a much different place.

Thursday, September 01, 2005

Hurricane Relief Blog-Burst

This post will be on top all day... scroll down for new stuff...

Today, over a hundred bloggers have banded together to highlight charity organizations that are bringing relief to those affected by Hurricane Katrina. Glenn Reynolds is keeping a list of the charities.

The first charity that comes to mind is the American Red Cross. They are the ones who have the most experience dealing with situations like this. In addition to a monetary contribution, I'd like to suggest that everyone who is able go down to their local Red Cross (or Blood and Tissue Center, if they're contracted for your area) and donate a unit of blood. (No, I don't really give a rat's rump if you have Belonephobia- get over yourself.)

Another suggestion was to talk to your company's HR department and see if they are doing matching donations for relief- if that's the case, then donate through your company.

And, as if I even need to mention this, keep the people of the Gulf States in your prayers.

UPDATE: Here is a list of corporate contributions so far.

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