Archive for August, 2005

Can You Feel It Yet?

Tuesday, August 30th, 2005

Can You Feel It Yet?

Two short weeks ago I was pitching a hissy-fit that our “news” services were kind enough to tell us that boy oh boy, that gas crisis, it’s a really bad one because in some places it’s going for three dollars, regular unleaded. Where would that be? Silly you. Somewhere, that’s where! And it’s really bad, and there’s not a damn thing you can do about it. Just wanted to know you how bad it was, tune in at eleven.

And I was raising the question, what kind of news is this?

Now, sometimes I run off on bunny trails and sometimes I don’t. I’m looking at that one and thinking, well that’s sort of right on the line isn’t it. Because it was not my intent to challenge that gas cost three dollars a gallon, or that it was on the way up — I was questioning whether what we call “news” is a product being offered to serve “our” own interests, in this case, the interests of gas consumers. I do still have substantial questions about that…and it IS what I wrote about.

But it’s probably fair to level a charge at myself of coloring-outside-the-lines because offer Sacramento as a model for high gas prices, I did. And dispatch myself to go look at local gas prices, I did. And revise my prediction at the time, by a dime a gallon, I did. And have something to do with my original point…well, it kind of didn’t.

I bring it up now because it’s kind of interesting. They apparently like to name the towns now, and what the prices have done in the last seventeen days…hoo boy.

Take a look at this. It still doesn’t affect me worth a damn because of what I drive. But all the rest of you have a serious problem. And…you know, when this is all over, we need to revisit that original point. What does news do for us? Is it supposed to tell us what’s going on, or is it supposed to get us all huffy and puffy when it wants to, like a tail wagging the dog?

Gas Prices May Rise As Much As 40 Cents Wednesday
State Consumer Protection Urges People To Report Suspected Gauging

The cheapest unleaded was settling at $2.99 for most of the area Tuesday night. That’s a jump of 20 to 30 cents a gallon, but that may be just the first shockwave.

WISN 12 News has learned that the price gas stations pay for their gas is jumping about 40 cents Wednesday, which would make $2.99 seem like a bargain.
:
“Sometimes, I wonder if people are living under a rock because they’ll come in and yell. They’re yelling at me, and I’m like, ‘You know, we don’t set the world oil prices at Brass Ball Mobil. We don’t have a little red switch in back that says this is what it’s gonna be today,’” [gas station owner Tom] Koenecke said.

More…

I feel sorry for all of you — except the retards who yell at people like Tom Koenecke. You’re just jerks. Here’s an idea, jerks. Get an SUV that — just to shake things up a little — doesn’t have a stepladder for you to get in. Sell your kids on the idea of basic cable instead of premium so you can pony up the extra hundred bucks a month. Stop yelling at Tom.

People are spending the night in a stadium with no electricity and foul-smelling water everywhere. They’d love to bitch and yell about gas prices, if only they could care.

Memo For File

Tuesday, August 30th, 2005

Memo For File

A lot of the posts that go into my blog are for my own benefit, not that of the many people who never read it. I’ve decided to call these “Memo For File” so they can be called what they really are. Although nobody ever reads this blog, for some reason I still place a premium importance on the time invested by those nobodies whenever they don’t show up. I was referred to this Mark Steyn article by means of Newsblog Central, noticed the link doesn’t work, and found thoughout the vast universe that is Google there is only one (1) copy and that’s the link that is somehow not there anymore. That’s the nature of the Internet, it seems. Some things are lying there, waiting to be read by nobody who never happens along to not read it; some things are there to send your attention off to some distant corner, where nothing awaits you, only a shadow of what once was.

Interested readers, as if there are any, will note immediately from the content what makes this a precious find, and why I thought it was important to fetch it out of Google Cache and put it where I can get to it later.

Those who have some attention span and memory-retention, and are just a little on the media-savvy side, will understand what the font is all about. Without further ado…

Islam does incubate terrorism
By Mark Steyn
(Filed: 12/07/2005)
“There are no Muslim terrorists. There are terrorists,” Father Paul Hawkins of St Pancras parish church told his congregation on Sunday. “The people who carried out these attacks are victims of a false religion, be it false Christianity or false Islam.”

Oh, dear. “Britain can take it” (as they said in the Blitz): that’s never been in doubt. The question is whether Britain can still dish it out. When events such as last Thursday’s occur, two things happen, usually within hours if not minutes: first, spokespersons for Islamic lobby groups issue warnings about an imminent backlash against Muslims.

In fairness to British organisations, I believe they were beaten to the punch by the head of the Canadian Islamic Congress whose instant response to the London bombings was to issue a statement calling for prayers that “Canadian Muslims will not pay a price for being found guilty by association”.

In most circumstances it would be regarded as appallingly bad taste to deflect attention from an actual “hate crime” by scaremongering about a non-existent one. But it seems the real tragedy of every act of “intolerance” by Islamist bigots is that it might hypothetically provoke even more intolerance from us irredeemable white imperialist racists. My colleague Peter Simple must surely marvel at how the identity-group grievance industry has effortlessly diversified into pre-emptively complaining about acts of prejudice that have not yet occurred.

Among those of us who aren’t Muslim, meanwhile, there’s a stampede to be first to the microphone to say that “of course” we all know that “the vast majority of Muslims” are not terrorists but law-abiding peace-loving people who share our revulsion at these appalling events, etc.

Mr Blair won that contest on Thursday, followed closely by Brian Paddick and full supporting cast. If “of course” Mr Blair and Mr Paddick and the rest do indeed know that “the vast majority of Muslims” do not favour terrorism, is that because they’ve run the numbers and have a ballpark figure on the very very very slim minority of Muslims who do? And, if so, what is it? 0.02 per cent? Or two per cent? Or 20 per cent?

And, if they haven’t run the numbers, why do they claim to speak with authority on this matter? If it were just a question of rhetorical sensitivity, I’d be happy to go along with Mr Paddick’s multiculti pap and insist that “Islam and terrorism don’t go together” – events in Beslan, Bali, Israel, Nigeria, Kashmir, etc, notwithstanding. But the danger in separating “Islam” from “terrorism” is that it leads the control-freaks of the nanny state into thinking that “terrorism” is something that can be dealt with by border security, ID cards, retinal scans, metal detectors. It can’t.

Terrorism ends when the broader culture refuses to tolerate it. There would be few if any suicide bombers in the Middle East if “martyrdom” were not glorified by imams and politicians, if pictures of local “martyrs” were not proudly displayed in West Bank grocery stores, if Muslim banks did not offer special “martyrdom” accounts to the relicts thereof, if schools did not run essay competitions on “Why I want to grow up to be a martyr”.

At this point, many readers will be indignantly protesting that this is all the fault of Israeli “occupation”, but how does that explain suicide bombings in Afghanistan and Pakistan, where there’s not a Zionist oppressor for hundreds of miles? Islam has become the world’s pre-eminent incubator of terrorism at its most depraved. Indeed, so far London has experienced only the lighter items on the bill of fare – random bombing of public transport rather than decapitation, child sacrifice and schoolhouse massacres.

Most of us instinctively understand that when a senior Metropolitan Police figure says bullishly that “Islam and terrorism don’t go together”, he’s talking drivel.

Many of us excuse it on the grounds that, well, golly, it must be a bit embarrassing to be a Muslim on days like last Thursday and it doesn’t do any harm to cheer ‘em up a bit with some harmless feel-good blather. But is this so?

Why are we surprised that “Muslim moderates” rarely speak out against the evil committed by their co-religionists when the likes of Mr Paddick keep assuring us there’s no problem? It requires great courage to be a dissenting Muslim in communities dominated by heavy-handed imams and lobby groups that function effectively as thought-police.

Yet all you hear from Mr Paddick is: “Move along, folks, there’s nothing to see here.” This is the same approach, incidentally, that the authorities took in their long refusal to investigate seriously the 120 or so “honour killings” among British Muslims.

Just as the police did poor Muslim girls no favours by their excessive cultural sensitivity, so they’re now doing the broader Muslim community no favours. The Blair-Paddick strategy only provides a slathering of mindless multiculti fudge topping over the many layers of constraint that prevent Islam beginning an honest conversation with itself.

Unlike Malaya or the Mau-Mau or the IRA, this is a global counter-terrorism operation across widely differing terrain, geographical and psychological. We need to be able to kill, constrain, coerce or coax as appropriate.

Kill terrorists when the opportunity presents itself, as 1,200 “insurgents” were said to have been killed in one recent engagement on the Syria/Iraq border the other day. Constrain the ideology behind Thursday’s bombing by outlawing Saudi funding of British mosques and other institutions. Coerce our more laggardly allies like General Musharraf into shutting down his section of the Saudi-Pakistani-Londonistan Wahhabist pipeline.

But the coaxing is what counts – wooing moderate Muslims into reclaiming their religion. We can take steps to prevent Islamic terrorists killing us, most of the time. But Islamic terrorists will only stop trying to kill us when their culture reviles them rather than celebrates them.

There are signs in the last week’s Muslim newspapers, in London and abroad, that some eminent voices are beginning to speak out. At such a moment, Britain should be on the side of free speech and open debate. Instead, the state is attempting to steamroller through a grotesque law at the behest of already unduly influential Islamic lobby groups. One of its principal effects will be to inhibit Muslim reformers. Shame on us for championing Islamic thought-police over Western liberty.

Nerd Bigot

Tuesday, August 30th, 2005

Nerd Bigot

There are people who think your ability to contribute productively to a civilized society is directly proportional to your “Gift of Gab,” so to speak, and if you happen to be one of the creative-introvert types, you’re a freak.

I’ve met these people. It’s generally been my experience that they hold professional positions where expertise is expected, but not quite absolutely required; and their personalities are such that if expertise is present, it’s not manifested quite as quickly as the previously-mentioned “Gift of Gab.” They strike me as insecure people. They seem to want to live in a world where Gift of Gab counts for a lot more and everything else counts for a whole lot less.

Now I can’t prove this is what motivates these people, and I can’t prove that Carol Costello is one of these people, or that this is what sparked the brief altercation caught on live TV during the graveyard shift on CNN. But I’ve seen the clip, and I don’t understand — even in the slightest — what came out of Chad Myers’ mouth that has to be “translated” for Costello. Honestly, the appearance to me is that they’ve been playing hide-the-weenie. That, or Costello is a Nerd Bigot. Maybe both.

Katrina: CNN’s Carol Costello & Chad Myers Yell At Each Other On Live TV

Transcript:

Chad Myers: It has filled in a little bit, filled in with some air, but this lower portion, but…

Carol Costello: Chad, Chad, Chad…

Myers: Let me talk Carol!

Costello: Translate that for us, I don’t know what that means, what does that mean–

Myers: Well if you would let me talk!

Costello: [Laughs] Go ahead.

Clip.

Is it “air”? “Portion”? “Filled in”? What needs to be translated?

Keep Writing It

Tuesday, August 30th, 2005

Keep Writing It

Jenny McCarthy had a book ready for publication about marriage, and then a funny thing happened. Take a look.

�Jenny was deliriously in love with her husband and her book, which is hilarious, was going to be a [part of a] series about marriage,� says a source. �Jenny was going to be the spokeswoman for a generation of young, sassy, married women. But just as the contract was being signed, Jenny filed for divorce.�

Irreconciliable Differences is the cited reason for the divorce. I’ve got a gut feel, which I can’t actually prove, that the “sassy” thing has something to do with the Differences. I don’t know as much about happy marriages as some other people might, but to me they don’t appear to have a lot of room for sass.

But hey. Happily married people, to the extent I can see, can only dish out a little bit of information about what makes their marriage happy. The happier their marriages are, the more reluctant they appear to be about describing “one size fits all” methods of reproducing the same enviornment somewhere else. To get some passionate, energetic opinions, it seems you have to go to people who haven’t been happily married. Or people who haven’t been married at all. Hoo boy, nobody has more opinions about marriage, than people who’ve never been married. And few people have more entertaining opinions about marriage, than the people who have been married unhappily.

So I think she should keep writing it, especially if it’s supposed to be “hillarious.” Marriages that truly are going to last awhile, have little entertainment value. They aren’t necessarily supposed to be entertaining. Maybe that’s why they last.

The Polite Word For This Is “Nonsense”

Tuesday, August 30th, 2005

The Polite Word For This Is “Nonsense”

Yesterday toward the end of Rush’s second hour, he made mention of this story. Those listening at the time will recall it to be about the f-word quota, where if you’re a student at this secondary school, you get to swear up to five times per lesson. You can even use the f-word, but the teacher will keep score and if you go over that five-time limit, you’ll get — oh, the horror! — a lecture that you shouldn’t be doing that.

The school in question is Weavers Secondary School in Wellingborough, UK. The most informative link I could find, is here.

The rule allows kids to use the f-word against their teachers five times a lesson. Which means, the poor kids can abuse their teachers just about 30 times a day. No more.

Parents of children who attend the Weavers School in Wellingborough were told about the policy through a letter, the Daily Mail reported. The letter says: �Within each lesson the teacher will initially tolerate (although not condone) the use of the f-word (or derivatives) five times and these will be tallied on the board.�

So not only does the teacher have to take the abuse, he or she will also have to keep the score � and �speak to the class� if the tally is high. This is effective next week.

The school says that it is part of a policy of containment, aimed at a particularly profane bunch of 15-16 year-olds. Headmaster Alan Large defended his stand (and his students) saying: �The reality is that the f-word is part of these young adults� everyday language�.

I’m entirely unclear on whether the five-utterance quota applies to the class, or to each student. This is somewhat important. If it applies to the class, and you and I are in class together, and you use it four times, then I can only use it once before we all have to get that painful lecture, you peckerhead. If it applies to each student, then a substantially greater part of that blackboard will be taken up with the tallying, and what’s even better is we can wait until the teacher turns around to write something on the board and squeek out the f-word with a little voice-throwing effect, and oh think of the disrupting power that would have over today’s lesson.

Knowing how young boys work, I’d be worried about one who didn’t try this, or wasn’t at least tempted to.

This would be much less damaging to the learning atmosphere if they just made a policy that said the f-word was allowed unconditionally. You can break a rule five times and it doesn’t matter until the sixth time? What kind of world are they preparing these kids to get into?

I’ve never been in the UK. Maybe I’m learning something. Hey Bobbies, can I come over there with my stupid yankee driving, and make five laps in the round-about in the wrong direction before you pull me over?

Ooh, do I get to own up to five handguns?

Hating the French

Tuesday, August 30th, 2005

Hating the French

Here’s a challenge. I want you to find a fictitious, entirely made-up, demonstrably false reason for hating the French. Something that would make you extra mad if they did it, but at the same time, something they have, according to verifiable facts, not done. Okay?

Use your imagination. Take your time.

Dum dee doo…doh doh dee doh.

Remember: You can’t say “They endangered the world by refusing to pass a resolution against Iraq’s old regime after it was shown to be in material breach of Resolution 1441 in exchange for billions of dollars in Oil For Food money.” Only a concocted reason will do. Need more time?

La la dee la…la la la.

Okay, time’s up! What have you got?

Let me guess. It was using cute little puppies and kittens to fish for sharks, wasn’t it?

Aw gee, today just isn’t your lucky day.

A six-month-old puppy was found last month with hooks implanted in its snout and one of its legs.

The French Society for the Protection of Animals (SPA) told the daily the dog was the victim of cruel fishermen who attract sharks by throwing puppies or kittens into the water, tied to fishing lines, and wait for the predators to swallow the thrashing animals.

“We don’t see that every day, but it’s not the first time, either,” Marie-Annick Chantrel, the vice-president of the R�union branch of the SPA, told Clicanoo. “We’ve already seen cats six or seven months old with hooks in them.”

Back to the drawing board for you.

Questions for Charlie Daniels

Monday, August 29th, 2005

Questions for Charlie Daniels

This is just plain funny. “Thirty-Nine Questions for Charlie Daniels Upon Hearing ‘The Devil Went Down to Georgia’ for the First Time in 25 Years.”

1. The Devil won that fiddling contest, right?
2. Because isn’t that totally amazing fiddle feedback thing the Devil plays (which sounds like Hendrix gone bluegrass) a hundred times better than that high-school-band piece-of-crap tune Johnny plays?
3. I mean, come on, right?
4. And since the Devil is so clearly better, why does he lay the golden fiddle on the ground at Johnny’s feet?
5. What kind of one-sided bet was that anyway, your eternal soul for a fiddle?

Read more…

All the United Nations Men

Monday, August 29th, 2005

All the United Nations Men

Free Image Hosting at www.ImageShack.us

As I type this, I’m halfway through my second viewing of All the President’s Men (1976) starring Robert Redford and Dustin Hoffman. This is the movie that created the Government-Entertainment-Complex as we know it today. House Democrats made sure nobody could follow the news without knowing about Watergate, then Hollywood made doubly sure. An electorate that had so recently been agitated against a judicial system that flooded America’s streets with mass murderers and sexual predators, suddenly became jaded and cynical toward all sides. They ended up putting a Democrat in the White House when they were entirely unable to explain why, and the rest is history. Runaway inflation. Double-digit interest rates. An energy crisis out of control. Hostages, a demoralized military, and the birth of militant radical Islam. A bond was forged between Hollywood and the liberal side of our government. And print journalists were put on notice that if they wanted to make a name for themselves nailing someone’s hide to the wall, they’d better make sure it’s a Republican hide.

I was watching it for the first time, a couple hours ago, and near the end I had a funny thought.

Take out the word “White House” and substitute “Iraq”…

…take out the phrase “burglary at the Watergate” and substitute “Al Qaeda”…

…pretend the “Washington Post” is the “United States” and “Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein” are “the George W. Bush administration.”

Do those things, and the entire movie is a rehash of what we’ve been seeing the last two years. Guilty people hiding behind innocent people, who keep secrets on behalf of the guilty because they don’t want to be hurt. High-tension arguing about whether there is “enough meat” to run with something or not, and what the stakes are if things can’t be backed up later. Haughty and indignant spokesmen who insist there is no connection between A and B when they know there damn well is one, only, it was only almost proven and not completely proven and they think they can drive a wedge in there. Money trails that lead nowhere, until you really start to follow them. Then they lead somewhere, but by then, anybody who could tell you anything, has a stake in the status quo, so you can’t learn anything, and you can prove even less.

Right-minded and altruistic seekers of truth and defenders of liberty, being attacked by those they answer to, for exposing their institution to derision and ridicule by seeking that truth and defending that liberty.

The natural condition of uncertainty being used to defend the indefensible.

What’s worse? A President who authorizes burglary to enhance his strategic plans for re-election? Or a murdering madman, known to seek nuclear, chemical and biological weapons in the past, who thinks its worth his while to spend billions of dollars in bribes, just to get weapons inspectors to look away — while he does God Only Knows what?

What’s more precious? The national security of the United States AND the stability of the Middle East as we know it…or the competitive advantage of the Washington Post over the New York Times?

Update: Here’s the quote that really got me to thinking. Clark MacGregor, speaking about the story that broke in the Washington Post, just fifteen minutes before the end of the movie.

Using innuendo, third-person hearsay, unsubstantiated charges, anonymous sources, and huge scare headlines, the Post has maliciously sought to give the appearance of a direct connection between the White House and the Watergate. A charge which the Post knows, and half a dozen investigations have found, to be false. The hallmark of the Post’s campaign is hypocrisy, and its celebrated double-standard is today visible for all to see.

Let’s replace just a few choice words and see how close we can get to very-recent-nostalgia with just a minimum of revision, shall we.

Using innuendo, third-person hearsay, unsubstantiated charges, anonymous sources, and huge scare headlines, the PostWhite House has maliciously sought to give the appearance of a direct connection between the White HouseIraq and the WatergateAl Qaeda. A charge which the PostGeorge Bush knows, and half a dozen investigations have found, to be false. The hallmark of the PostBush Administration’s campaign is hypocrisy, and its celebrated double-standard is today visible for all to see.

Doesn’t seem to be to be at all different from what we’ve heard over the last two years. Ah, well. Maybe I’m imagining the whole thing.

One Question is Answered, Another One is Asked

Monday, August 29th, 2005

One Question is Answered, Another One is Asked

Coalition troops have been in Iraq for twenty-nine months now. That’s two and a half years that there has been no practical purpose, none whatsoever, as to debating whether or not they should be there. They’re there. That there are people who still want to debate this, is meaningless. The only way out is through.

Iraq’s new Constitution has been passed through the Parliament and now goes before the voters on October 15. Logic has spent two and a half years recognizing the irrelevancy of asking whether we should, or should not, be in Iraq; I expect in the next three months popular opinion will catch up to logic. If that’s the case, we will soon stop seeking an answer to this irrelevant question. If there is bandwidth freed up for pursuing another question, and we’re still in the mood for asking them, I have a great idea.

I notice lately the anti-war left has chosen to attack any notion that our troops in Iraq are fighting for our freedom. They tell me they support the troops. Okay, so you support the troops and you think their mission has nothing to do with fighting for freedom; how much priority would you then give to this project of disavowing any notion that our troops are fighting for freedom, anytime and anyplace you encounter that notion? If I really believed the things these people say, and I thought our troops were just wasting their lives and their time, but at the same time I supported them, I wouldn’t put much priority on “getting the word out” — none at all. It would go into my file of opinions-that-aren’t-very-important. I don’t like Mustangs. The word “totally” has no use in our spoken language among honest people. Star Wars is better than Star Trek. Things I’ve absolutely made up my mind about, but probably mean nothing.

So I’m utterly unconvinced how, if our troops aren’t fighting for our freedom, it can be worth anyone’s time to disseminate that message in a propaganda campaign — if those disseminating, do indeed support our troops. But okay, the left disagrees with me, and somehow it is worthwhile to broadcast that our troops are not fighting for our freedom. My point is, now that that question’s been raised, useless as it may be while we’re in Iraq, it may be quite productive to study it after we’re done there.

I expect both sides will agree to this. Saddam Hussein’s old regime may have been connected with Al Qaeda, or it may not have been. But it’s a done deal we will have to deal with more bad guys if we want to do more damage to Al Qaeda. And we can’t leave Al Qaeda alone and hope they go away.

So I’d like to put the call out, to whoever reads this blog — nobody ever does — to rise up and request an answer to this question. These last two and a half years, this has been the star around which the “Weapons of Mass Destruction” and “Fighting for our Freedom” planets have been orbiting, although nobody has wanted to talk about it.

The question is this. And it should emphatically, categorically, unequivocally, be beyond any dissent, dispute, or disagreement whatsoever, anywhere, that this has to do with freedom.

How are resolutions, such as United Nations Resolution 1441, enforced?

What exactly does it mean when the United Nations “authorize[s] Member States to use all necessary means to uphold and implement” what is dictated in previous resolutions? Does “authorize,” in this context, mean something different than what “authorize” is supposed to mean?

Was a second resolution, after 1441, needed? If so, needed to do what? What would a second resolution have done that 1441 didn’t do?

Does the United Nations even have a role here? If so, what is it? If not, then what else should it be doing? And whether the UN is involved or not, how do we go about defining international law, what violates it, who is guilty of violating it, and what can be done to ensure there are consequences for violating it?

How do we protect ourselves when violators bribe members of the United Nations Security Council, and other lawmaking bodies tasked with legislating and enforcing international law? Link, Link, Link, Link.

After all, and as the anti-war crowd is so fond of reminding me, there are a lot of other bad guys in the world besides Saddam Hussein. Better to figure out what to do with them sooner, than later.

Scientists Unhappy Being Scientists

Monday, August 29th, 2005

Scientists Unhappy Being Scientists

If anybody ever actually read this blog, which of course nobody does, they would recall a long-standing theme of challenging science, particularly the “thou shalt think…” brand of science which dutifully instructs the lowly unwashed non-scientists on what opinions they should properly have, and when pressed to back it up, replies with some variation of “that is for scientists to know and you’re not a scientist.” We’ve had an up-tick lately in this type of science, which prohibits the Little People from asking common-sense questions like How? Why? What? Where?

Scientists have begun to feed on their own, effectively excommunicating peers who don’t tow the line. Is there man-made global warming? Are homosexuals born that way? Did design play a role in the creation of the universe? Increasingly, science has been indulging in the “No True Scotsman” logical fallacy: Man is destroying the environment, and there is a homosexual gene, and intelligent design is entirely invalid, because all scientists agree this has been proven. And then if you come back with so-and-so is a scientist, and he disagrees, or he holds that it is not yet proven, then you are told so-and-so doesn’t count. All real scientists agree these things are true.

I find this to be strange, because when I was in school I was told science was all about challenging things. Now that I’m an old fart, it seems science is all about not challenging things. It’s kind of like a church. Bishops may not contradict what the Pope says, and priests may not contradict what bishops say. How do we know it to be true? Well, who in the world are you to ask such a question…you’re just showing how little you know about science.

Now I see that not only is science going through a change in method, it’s also going through a change in scope. Scientists aren’t happy being scientsts anymore. They want to do something else. Star Trek used to have episodes where the actors played characters out of Robin Hood, when they got tired of doing science-fiction. Fonzie jumped over a shark when he got tired of being a cool guy who hung around a hamburger stand. James Bond went after drug kingpins when he got tired of fighting SPECTER. It’s in the nature of all living things, called upon to do something within a constrained scope, to get tired and want to branch out eventually.

I have no qualm with that.

But if you want to become a dictator and a goo-gooder and a tut-tutter, clucking your tongue endlessly about people’s social habits, shouldn’t you renounce the scientist title?

Doesn’t it cost some money to go out and inspect how much housework men do?

Where does the money come from? Who pays it, and why? What do they want? And what was the mission statement offered when the money was requested?

The Institute for Social and Economic Research at Essex University has calculated that men, on average, do tasks for 146 minutes a day.

That is well up on the 1960s estimate of the 83 minutes.

Somebody wants something. I don’t know diddly-squat about who it is, or what exactly it is that they want, but I’ll guarantee somebody wants something, and whatever it is, we shouldn’t like it. How in the world would this possibly matter to science?

Overall, Sainsbury’s Bank estimates it would cost �11,920 to pay someone to do the jobs men carry out for free each year.

David Pickett, life insurance manager at Sainsbury’s Bank, said: “Much has been written about the rise of supermums and how they juggle careers with raising a family.

“However, there are also many superdads who as well as holding down jobs, also do a lot of work around the home – from DIY to cooking.”

I’ll tell you one way this matters. People read about a certain amount of money being needed to pay someone to do the same thing, and they get resentful. Over nothing, I might add.

If you live alone, you need to do what men in this article do, and you need to do what the women do in those other articles that bitch and piss and moan about all the housework women do. These are things that need to be done. They’re part of living. So it costs ten thousand dollars, or twenty, or thirty to pay someone for that much work. Make it a million. Who the hell cares?

It has to be done.

Here we go with the same questions I had about the “women doing lots of housework” articles. While Mister Mom is at home mopping the floor, what is his honey doing? She’s at work, probably. Is she making at least �11,920 at work in a year? Almost certainly. Okay then, she’s contributing. As is he.

Two people contributing to a household. So what’s all this bullshit about measuring things? Starting a fight where none existed previously, that’s what.

All in the name of science. I’d be willing to buy that, sure. But what kind of science? What were the researchers trying to find out?

For The Anti-Death-Penalty Types II

Monday, August 29th, 2005

For The Anti-Death-Penalty Types II

One of the arguments for capital punishment, for which it’s dang-nigh-impossible to get a reasoned, passioned, well-thought-out counter-argument from the anti-death-penalty crowd, is the premise that there are certain people who lack compassion and morals. If you’re on fire, they think nothing of pulling out a stick, putting a marshmallow on the end, and waving it around over you. They’ll even put some extra lighter fluid on you if it’s not cooking quick enough.

It makes complete sense. History proves this, and the police who get to look at the ugliest parts of our society, vouch for this. There are some among us who lack outie-belly-buttons; there are some among us who lack skin pigment; there are some among us who lack eyebrows; and, there are some among us who lack any sense of right and wrong, any sense whatsoever. I’ve been unable to ever get a response to the argument posed above. Many rejoinders are possible to articulate, but there are none among them that can be taken seriously, to the extent that I can see.

  • Nah-hah! There are no people like that!
  • There are people like that, but they can be rehabilitated.
  • There are people like that who can’t be rehabilitated, but we can lock them up forever.
  • There are people like that but we owe it to them to tolerate them just as they tolerate us.

I don’t have any idea which of those the anti-death-penalty types would like to use. I’ve never been able to get a handle on what their attitude toward this is.

If they opt for the first bullet, though, this one is for them:

Angela DeLettre returned home Thursday afternoon to find her back door open, items missing and kitchen sink overflowing with water.

She was able to find one of her dogs, a 6-year-old shi tzu named Pepper. But she was unable to find her other dog, a 1-year-old rat terrier. Police later found the dog burned to death in the oven, which had been set to 400 degrees.

Just amazing. Those people don’t scare me. But I’m terrified of the people who want to insist they don’t exist, or refuse to grapple with the logical conclusions that must be reached once you acknowledge they do indeed exist.

Can’t Make It

Monday, August 29th, 2005

Can’t Make It

Today’s August 29th, and Hooters on Challenge Way is supposed to (according to the banners that were posted outside the building) have a Grand Opening today.

Nobody ever reads this blog, but I did get one concerned e-mail from a sweet young lady in Davis who — I’m taking her word for it — is not afraid of going to extra mile to make her man happy. Katharyn, your boyfriend is a very lucky man. At work, rest or play, in love and in war, attitude is everything, and your attitude seems to be one of the best ones.

I am a 23 year old female college student living in Davis and I was trying to determine whether the new restaurant was actually opening tomorrow or not. You see, unlike the unfortunate Sacramento women you have met, I do like to please the men in my life, and, regardless of men, I love Hooters. I get my boyfriend to drive me to Dublin or SF every couple of months to get those wings and enjoy a nice beer in a nice, relaxing atmosphere. I declare proudly my love for the place and bring girls there on occasion. I can’t wait for the Sacramento location to open. Maybe I’ll see you there.

I haven’t been making any updates lately because I’ve been sick as a dog. I’m in recovery mode now, probably not contagious, but I don’t want to risk it. After all, if I went down to Challenge Way and infected someone, who exactly would I be infecting? Pretty girls who look good in short-shorts and want to work at Hooter’s; women like Katharyn with good attitudes who aren’t shy about pleasing their men; men who aren’t afraid to let their women know they like to be happy, and what makes them so. Sacramento, as I’ve noted, suffers an acute shortage of all three of these. We need you people to be well.

Enjoy the hot wings. I’ll be along as soon as good health permits.

Update: Today is August 30th. Sometime within the last three days or so the 1785 Challenge Way address has been added to the company’s website. Looks like it’s official. A little bit o’honey for the Sacramento vinegar.

Regulation Is the Opposite of Science

Saturday, August 27th, 2005

Regulation Is the Opposite of Science

This is good reading material for those who are opposed to Intelligent Design being considered a valid scientific theory; specifically, those in favor of using the police power of the state to ensure that it never is.

First of all, take a look at the “About” page from the official website for the New Hampshire Board of Medicine.

What is the Board of Medicine

The Board was created by the Legislature in 1897 to ensure that all physicians had the training and skills necessary to practice safe and effective medicine for the people of New Hampshire. Originally, the Board was comprised of 5 physicians. Later, a paramedical representative was added to the membership along with 2 members of the public who have no relationship to the medical profession. All members are appointed by the Governor and serve 5 year terms.

The Board is an independent decision making entity. It employs a full time administrative staff and contracts with other state agencies to provide investigation and legal support. The Board is served by an advisory committee for physician assistants as well as a disciplinary review committee. All expenses are paid for by license fees.

So for a hundred and eight years the Board has been ensuring physicians “practice safe and effective medicine.” We’re all clear on that being the mission statement, right? Well, on the recommendation of this Board, Dr. Terry Bennett is under investigation by the state attorney general’s office for counseling one of his patients that she needs to lose some weight.

Dr. Terry Bennett says he tells obese patients their weight is bad for their health and their love lives, but the lecture drove one patient to complain to the state.

“I told a fat woman she was obese,” Bennett says. “I tried to get her attention. I told her, ‘You need to get on a program, join a group of like-minded people and peel off the weight that is going to kill you.’ ”

He says he wrote a letter of apology to the woman when he found out she was offended.

Her complaint, filed about a year ago, was initially investigated by a panel of the New Hampshire Board of Medicine, which recommended that Bennett be sent a confidential letter of concern. The board rejected the suggestion in December and asked the attorney general’s office to investigate.

Bennett rejected that office’s proposal that he attend a medical education course and acknowledge that he made a mistake.

Is the Board acting in fulfillment of its mission statement? I don’t know. I’d need to review the patient’s medical chart to make that determination, and before I did that, it couldn’t hurt to get a medical degree first. But could it not be taken as a safe assumption beyond reasonable disagreement, that this kind of censuring and censoring is probably out-of-harmony with the Board’s stated purpose? And couldn’t most people agree that in all likelihood, this is a contradiction to the Board’s stated purpose? After all, when you’re a fat tub-of-lard who can inspire your doctor to say “you need to peel of the weight that is going to kill you,” it’s probably not good for you to be cloistered and sheltered from people who are going to say that.

I’m giving the Board the benefit of the doubt here, assuming that their actions are being undertaken in pursuit of their stated mission. Common sense, though, tells us this is more likely to be all about feelings. And that’s the trouble with regulation. After awhile, it tends to be pursued out of concern for people’s feelings, and when it is, nobody ever takes the trouble to write that down. Nobody ever writes a charter, or a mission statement, or a constitution, to define intensive bureaucratic endeavors to preserve and enhance people’s positive feelings. The Feelings-Mission-Statement has a way of just kind of creeping in as time goes along.

Science is not about feelings, it is about fact. And the last feelings that cause any loss-of-sleep to real science, are the feelings of scientific professionals sympathetic to whatever is being challenged. Science is also not about predictability. You buy a quart of vegetable oil or five pounds of sugar, you know exactly what you’re getting; if a dead roach is in the oil or a disembodied finger is in the sugar, then we need some regulation. You visit your doctor, and in the world I live in, things work a little different — if you’re due for a surprise, you get it. But the New Hampshire Board of Medicine apparently figures it should work more like a food product. Pay your money, go in, no surprises. Just pasteurized, filtered and overly-regulated small-talk about weather and golf. Sensible advice about your bad health habits are expunged, with penalties, reprimands, and I should assume periodic audits, just like rat turds from a bottle of ketchup.

There is an important lesson here that applies to the human-heifer, to Intelligent Design, and to anything else that has to do with scientific institutions: Epiphanies helpful to science, as common-sense and unavoidable as they look in the rear-view mirror, create a lot of discomfort when they’re first proposed. Things like “you need to lose weight or you’re gonna die.” People didn’t like to hear the world was round. They didn’t like to hear that if you mass-produce some machine parts and assemble them, you can make a horseless carriage. They didn’t necessarily like to hear that if you hook up some wires to a machine with a rotating shaft, you can light a city block without any gas. People were put out of work by inspirations like that. Those who weren’t put out of work, had to change their ways of doing business in order to survive. Those who ran factories, had to tool up. Those who purchased and re-sold goods, had to fire people they personally liked, a lot. People who were elected or appointed to run infrastructures and complicated systems, were compelled by changing technology to spend money they didn’t want to spend.

A lot of the people mentioned above, given the choice, would much rather have their bodily physiques insulted if it somehow meant everything else could have stayed the way it was. But this would be contrary to the nature of living. Life is change. Life is movement. Life is messy. Sometimes it packs a whallop, like, in the form of a doctor telling you your ass is too big.

Put another way, if we regulated at every turn by the desire of the squeamish to never be made uncomfortable, you wouldn’t have a computer on which to read this very sentence. You’d have to read a book. By candlelight. And you’d be unpleasantly surprised at how few books you’d have from which to choose.

We’re entering a new age where governments are challenging reality, and they expect to win. If that’s the case, we’re due for a Dark Age that can only be brought to an end when some talented and headstrong Men of Ability, who are truly weary of the nanny-state, pack up, disappear without a trace, and move to Galt’s Gulch.

Don’t Mess With Mom

Saturday, August 27th, 2005

Don’t Mess With Mom

Check out the poem below, which has three of the most important attributes that make poems what they all should be. It rhymes, and rhymes well; it possesses commentary that remains relevant over long periods of time in a changing society; and the author is unknown.

This has to do with a lot more than just a woman raising her kid. It helps to explain why, where liberal policies are ratified and bureaucracies are created hand-over-fist to protect the “little people,” the little people end up living unhappy, meaningless lives, and meander from cradle to grave confined to their roles as little people. It also explains why the happiest, healthiest, and most productive among us, tend to be religious and why atheists tend to walk around with that GQ-Magazine-Cover type of frown all the time, not really getting an awful lot accomplished from one year to the next. Cooperation and respect for others, will set you free. Litanies of endless complaints, and entirely manufactured rights, will shackle you to the floor.

DON’T MESS WITH MOM
(writer unknown)

My son came home from school one day,
With a smirk upon his face.
He decided he was smart enough,
To put me in my place.

Guess what I learned in Civics II
That’s taught by Mr. Wright?
It’s all about the laws today,
The “Children’s Bill of Rights.”

It says I need not clean my room,
Don’t have to cut my hair..
No one can tell me what to think,
Or speak, or what to wear.

I have freedom from religion,
And regardless of what you say,
I don’t have to bow my head,
And I sure don’t have to pray.

I can wear earrings if I want,
And pierce my tongue and nose.
I can read and watch what I like,
And get tattoos from head to toes..

And if you ever spank me,
I’ll charge you with a crime.
I’ll back up all my charges,
With the marks on my behind.

Don’t you ever touch me,
My body is only for my use,
Not for hugs and kisses,
That’s just more child abuse

Don’t preach about my morals,
Like your mama did to you,
That’s nothing more than mind control,
And that’s illegal too!

Mom, I have these children’s rights,
So you can’t influence me,
Or I’ll call the Children’s Services Division,
Better known as C.S.D.

Of course my first instinct was
To toss him out the door.
But the chance to teach him a lesson
Made me think a little more.

I mulled it over carefully,
I couldn’t let this go.
A smile crept upon my face,
He’s messing with a pro.

The next day, I took him shopping
At the local Good Will Store.
I told him, “pick out all you want,
There’s shirts and pants galore.”

I’ve called and checked with C.S.D.
Who said they didn’t care
If I bought you K-Mart shoes
Instead of those Nike Airs.

And I’ve cancelled that appointment
To take your driver’s test.
The C.S.D. is unconcerned
So I’ll decide what’s best.

I said, “No Time to stop and eat,
Or pick up stuff to munch.
And tomorrow you start to learn
To make your own sack lunch.”

Just save the raging appetite,
And wait till dinner time.
We’re having liver and onions,
A favorite dish of mine.

He asked, “Can I please rent a movie
To watch on VCR?”
“Sorry, but I sold your TV,
To put new tires on my car. ”

I also rented out your room,
You’ll take the couch instead.
All the C.S.D. requires is
A roof over your head.

Your clothing won’t be trendy now,
And I’ll choose what we eat.
That allowance that you used to get,
Will buy me something neat.

I’m selling off your jet ski,
Dirt-Bike and roller blades.
Check out the Parent Bill of Rights,
It’s in effect today!

Hey, hot shot, are you crying?
And why are you on your knees?
Are you asking God to help you out,
Instead of C.S.D?

Our Evil President

Thursday, August 25th, 2005

Our Evil President

Nearly two thousand good American men and women have been killed in President Bush’s illegal and unjust war to “liberate” Iraq. Much has been made of the Downing Street Memo that proves that the President had his mind made up to drive Saddam Hussein out of Iraq, as early as the summer of 2002. But people forget that the President had actually made up his mind on regime change long before then.

I have another piece of evidence of this insidious agenda that has not only been documented, but even signed into law. The American People need to understand the truth, so without further ado let’s take a look at this memorandum that has been signed by the President himself. Let’s start impeachment proceedings without waiting another minute.

Update (8-30-05): Okay a lot of folks spanked me on this one. You’re absolutely right. It turns out October of 1998 was well before there was a Bush presidency, and the name in the signature block belongs to some guy named William J. Clinton. I guess it’s a good thing that all those times I was referring to the President I actually called him “the President” instead of “President Bush.”

So when do the hearings start? I mean, if wanting to get rid of Saddam Hussein before the beginning of 2003 is an impeachable offense, which is the premise you must accept before even starting to review the Downing Street Memo — it just seems to be a natural question to ask.

Charity Softball

Thursday, August 25th, 2005

Charity Softball

Just notes on this one, mostly for my own benefit, because I’ve only heard one side of the story.

Last night was the 5th annual charity softball game between California legislature Democrats and Republicans. A good recitation of the facts can be found at a recent discovery of mine which I intend to revisit often, The Irish Lass. The morning radio show Armstrong and Getty is to be credited with actually calling this stuff to my attention. All of these bullets are due to receive more homework-attention from me. Among the highlights:

  • The Democrat team was reportedly sporting SEIU jerseys instead of the “official” jerseys that are handed out to each side. There is some discussion, both on the Lass’ site and on the radio program, about a protest or picket being organized since Sutter Health, a non-union company, sponsored the game.
  • Host Jack Armstrong had some responsibility for dishing out the witty banter during the game. He had an interesting story to tell about a funny joke he made; something about the ball going over the wall rather easily, and Armstrong compared the wall, and the nearly-nonexistent stopping power of same, to the California/Mexican border. Fifty percent of the charity attendees laughed real hard and the other fifty percent groaned in unison like they had all simultanously suffered a grave flesh wound. Armstrong was taken aback by the idea that pointing out the obvious was thought by many to have crossed some kind of line; he would have thought the point of disagreement would be not what the facts are, but what to do about them. Well, me too.
  • There seems to have been a point in the game where the third-out rested on a safe-or-out call by the umpire, and the umpire’s call was subject to some controversy and perhaps even a reversal. Some of the team players, or perhaps the leadership of the opposing teams, took it in their own hands to play “umpire” and the result was that a batter from each side approached the plate at the same time, each of them protesting that the other guy was interpreting the call wrongly and/or was out-of-line. There is a lot of humor about this being the way things work at the capitol all the time, but obviously it’s the kind of humor where when it’s told, you don’t know whether to laugh or cry.
  • From the sounds of things, the time-honored phrase “A good time was had by all” would be best reserved for some other occasion. Sounds like an interesting evening. I wish I had been there to capture this stuff firsthand.
  • The Activist Returns

    Thursday, August 25th, 2005

    The Activist Returns

    There is a certain activist who has returned to Crawford, Texas.

    Your reasonable, objective, agenda-free media thinks you care, or should.

    I care…about this woman whose name I no longer mention, getting the help she needs. I expect such a loss is all the more devastating when the departed has nurtured political opinions sharply different from those felt by kin left behind. In this case, this activist’s son re-enlisted when he didn’t have to. Because he thought, as she does, that the war is a sham to make oilmen rich? That idea would be extravagant to the point of immediate self-implosion, so, take it as a given, he disagreed. The last time I commented on that, most people didn’t understand this fact. Now, most people do, and they understand without me pointing it out, what it means. Thank goodness nobody is plotting the “approval rating” of this certain activist, because the trend would surely show she is wearing out her welcome.

    It takes a certain maturity level to reconcile with opinions different from your own, especially with relatives who are close to you who’ve been suddenly killed. This certain activist has shown over and over, she doesn’t have that level of maturity. She labors under pain felt by thousands of other grieving Iraq-KIA parents, but lacks the peace that most of them have, knowing their children died fighting for a noble cause. Have a few thoughts of sympathy for her, even as you wish her off the front page, as most people are wishing now.

    Eating It

    Thursday, August 25th, 2005

    Eating It

    Sometimes when you “know” something with near-certainty, and it’s a bad thing, you make a complete buffoon out of yourself opining on it in the hopes that Kharma will turn things upside-down to make you look like an ass. I’ve found that usually doesn’t work.

    This time it did. Sacramento will have a Hooters, on August 29th. Or at least that’s what’s written on the banners surrounding this building by Arden Way, which certainly does appear to be all gussied-up for the occasion, and even customized for it.

    Free Image Hosting at www.ImageShack.us

    Does this mean I was wrong? Maybe not wrong, but a revision of my earlier comments is in order. Let us put it this way. I am firmly convinced, through 11:59 p.m. on August 28th, not a single minute earlier and perhaps much, much later, that Sacramento is guaranteed to stay Hooters-free. There is salt in the soil of this cabbage patch and I’ll believe something can grow in it when I see it grow. At that time, I’ll admit I was wrong. I’m man enough to eat it.

    We have plenty of carbon-based life-forms to justify opening a Hooters. But will our brittle women allow their husbands to go & support the establishment?

    It appears time will tell.

    Come what may, on Monday, I’ll see you there.

    “Grieving Parents” Game

    Wednesday, August 24th, 2005

    “Grieving Parents” Game

    I’m going to let Arthur Chrenkoff speak for himself. There is nothing further to be said after he says what he says.

    Kos and the rest of the left think that exploiting Cindy Sheehan’s exploitation of her loss is the best new secret weapon in the war against George Bush. But both sides can play the “grieving parents” game -? except that it’s not a game, and it shouldn’t be played. The right has not used people like Lynn Kelly, Linda Ryan, or hundreds of others, to make their case in our current war. It would be decent if the left stopped using Cindy Sheehan to make theirs.

    What is he talking about? He’s talking about the parents of our war dead — specifically, the parents of our troops killed in the Iraq operations in the last two days before he made that post, the ones who disagree with a certain other grieving parent who recently left Crawford, TX.

    I don’t know why these parents get so much less press than that certain person whose name I don’t discuss anymore. Well, I do know, but I don’t know why that disparity in coverage passes by virtually unnoticed.

    Must-Tards

    Tuesday, August 23rd, 2005

    Must-Tards

    • But what happened after 9/11 – with restrictions placed on human rights and the cycle of revenge and the allegations of human rights abuses in prisons – must also be explored. [emphasis mine]
    • The Freedom Center must signal its openness to contrary ideas. [emphasis mine]

    These are quotes from Sarwar Ali, the chairman of the International Coalition of Historic Site Museums of Conscience and a trustee of the Liberation War Museum in Bangladesh.

    Mr. Ali must have a lot of electricity jumping across his synapses every hundredth of a second to be charmain of International Coalation of this, and trustee of War Museum of that, and grand high poobah whats-his-face of some other damn thing. But to me, he’s a ‘tard. As in retard. Because in my world, when you have an I.Q. of room-temperature or above, you don’t need to hide behind the word “must”. The word “must,” in the absence of a strong argument that supports why things must be the way you say they must be, is a refuge for idiots.

    But Sarwar Ali, according to this article, hands it out like low-quality condoms to a third-world nation.

    The Chairman grand high poobah whats-his-face is commenting to the International Freedom Center, or IFC, which — somehow — has the responsibility of figuring out how to commemmorate what happened at Ground Zero on September 11, 2001. He gets to exert pressure on them insofar as what story it is they are to tell. For reasons that escape me, he gets to do this “quietly.”

    “Don’t feature America first,” the IFC has been advised by the consortium of 14 “museums of conscience” that quietly [emphasis mine] has been consulting with the Freedom Center for the past two years over plans for the hallowed site. “Think internationally, where America is one of the many nations of the world.”

    I remember like it was last Thursday, the day my son was circumcised. He was five days old, crying like a little bitch, and had little tiny smears of blood on his inner thighs. What was left of his penis, was indeed a fully functional penis, but it looked to me like an amputation. Having ushered his mother through labor pains, cramps, screaming, moaning, lots of blood, a placenta dropping out after him, with no loss of constitution in any way, shape, matter, form or regard…I observed for the first time that mutilated penis, and practically fainted. The floor met with my butt, or vice-versa. I wanted to vomit. I lost sense of which way was up.

    That’s the effect of a circumcision on a man’s man, a man who had seen his own blood meet the light of day without flinching. I don’t know whether Jack Lynch got to watch his son get circumcised, but he did get to personally carry his son’s dead body out of the wreckage of September 11. Apparently, he handled his son’s death better than I handled my son’s “bobbitting”.

    “I can’t think of a greater insult than to invite museums from other countries of the world to come and exploit what should be America’s memorial,” he said.

    It’s not in my nature to “feel” things about topics like these, before I “think.” But it’s quite beyond my capacity to sentence Mr. Lynch to endure the idle, perhaps entirely empty-headed rhetoric of blowhards like Mr. Ali about “must ought should ought must gotta gotta gotta” after he has personally hoisted his own son’s dead body in his arms. I have a son of my own. I can’t bring myself to do this.

    Mr. Ali, you want to “must” something? How about this: You must start having one-on-one chat sessions with parents like Jack Lynch before you tell the Freedom Center what they’re supposed to do. Hear his side of the story, and the story of other parents like him, before you start dispensing these kinds of rules that affect so many people who, so far as I know, you aren’t even compelled to meet.

    After that, perhaps you’ll stick to crusades that aren’t so offensive to the people who are much more personally involved in the outcome than you are. Then you won’t have to keep those crusades quite so “quiet”.

    Sacramento Hooters

    Tuesday, August 23rd, 2005

    Sacramento Hooters

    A former colleague brings to my attention that according to Google Maps, there is a Hooter’s Restaurant in downtown Sacramento. However, the company’s official website does not include this on the list of California locations, and the phone number given by Google Maps does not ring through. According to Hooters’ FAQ, it would not be worth my time to pester them about this, but it seems obvious the real concern is it wouldn’t be worth theirs.

    Long-time readers of this blog — there are no readers at all of this blog, let alone any long-time ones, but if there were — know that this is an item of ongoing concern here. Hooters is a special place. It fosters an atmosphere conducive to family fun, through the magical process of making sure that the patriarch is happy first. This is a recipe for assured success, and indeed, it seems to work wherever it’s tried. Many a time I’ve patronized a Hooter’s establishment, by myself or in the company of others, and from wall to wall you see immediate families, apparently-extended families, couples, groups from work, groups of women, etc. just having a ball.

    I’ve never seen anything to suggest oppression at Hooter’s. Certainly not some Archie Bunker type lout, yukking it up while a bored-looking double-chinned paramour looks on with feelings of inadequacy or a longing desire to leave. No, I see happy men and happy women. Make the man happy. Everybody else’s happiness will follow.

    This principle is nothing new, though. Lots of women know this because they were raised knowing this, watching their mothers make their fathers happy, and a happy family was the result. A good-hearted woman wants to make her man happy. A cold-hearted, brittle bitch doesn’t care about making a man happy — she just wants to have the skinniest ass in the room, even if she measures two feet from cheek-to-cheek. Her man will, therefore, not be going to Hooter’s. In my personal experience of dating women before I moved to Sacramento, and dating women within Sacramento, & finally getting tired of it all and dating outside of Sacramento again, I’ve noticed there is something special about this town.

    It’s chock full of bitter old battleaxes like this. To say Sacramento enjoys a monopoly of man-bashing harridans is probably promoting an extravagance that can’t be maintained even under the best of circumstances. But to infer that Sacramento is burdened by a disproportionate share of such testicle-cracking vinegrettes, appears to be inescapable.

    Most of them actually think they’re very kind-hearted, which is a real tragedy. They’re in that “gray area”. If they know their honey would like a nice cold beer, well, in their own cloistered minds they’re really nice ladies because you know what? They won’t stop him from getting one. See where I’m going with this yet? They will allow him to have some.

    But to borrow a page from the Red States, and actually get him a bottle so he doesn’t have to get up? Open it for him? Run down to the store real quick because you’re out, and it’s not productive to have him run the errand because he’s dead tired? Maybe even — gasp — take turns paying for it? What…are you NUTS???

    And that by itself is certainly not a very serious problem. Just like not being able to go to a sports bar restaurant where waitresses wear skimpy shorts, is not serious at all. I’ll be the first to admit the whole concern, is actually kind of silly.

    But these issues manifest a societal concern much, much deeper. And serious, too. Serious as a heart attack.

    For instance, why exactly is it so “unthinkable” to go out of your way to make a man happy? What would happen if you went and did it? Millions of wives and girlfriends are unable to fully answer these questions, and yet, they haven’t tried it. Letting a man be happy is fine once in awhile, but going out of your way to do it, well, that’s bad. It’s like a farmer with an ox-driven cart, buying the ox an iPod or a turbo-charged Porsche, when a bag of oats is all the ox should be getting. If a “gray area” kind of woman is caught trying to make her man happy, she might have to turn in her laminated angry-bitter-harpy-club membership card. And we can’t have that.

    Chapter 7 of “The Proper Care and Feeding of Husbands” by Dr. Laura Schlessinger is called A Man Should Be Respected In His Own Home. In her books and on her radio show, Schlessinger says some stuff that, in my opinion, doesn’t have too much pressing need to be heard. Having said that, while I hesitate to recommend the overall book as something approaching “required reading,” this particular chapter, in my opinion, definitely is required reading. It starts on page 143, ends on page 170, the pages are small, the print is huge, and frankly if you can polish off a Harlequin Romance novel in an afternoon over a cup of tea, this should be child’s play. It starts off with the story of a man, in his own home, being flipped off by his mother-in-law. The wife, curiously, was hesitant to take a position in this and even showed an inclination for siding with her mother!

    The real stunner was that she turned on her husband. In the most horrible, disdainful, sarcastic manner, she imitated him saying “A man should not be disrespected in his own home.” She particularly emphasized “man” and “own home” with her snotty disregard for him.

    I quietly said “You don’t think a man should be respected in his own home?” She flippantly came back with, “I think everyone should be respected everywhere.” I repeated, “You don’t think a man should be respected in his own home?” She wouldn’t answer that.

    I tried to reach her, but frighteningly, she clearly saw nothing wrong with her manner or attitude. After the call, I expressed out loud that I felt deeply sorry for this man and his children.

    Me too. Divorce seems not only inevitable, but merciful — for the man, for the wife, for the philistine mother-in-law, and maybe even for the kids. Until that happens, no way can that guy go to Hooter’s.

    Something is terribly wrong with women like this. And something is terribly wrong with Sacramento. I’ve dated women with the “respect-for-man-ceiling,” who live every waking moment as if respect for masculine figures was some polluting agent that can only be disbursed in tiny volumes and with an eye toward strict rationing. And as I said above, I’ve dated women in Sacramento. There is a high overlap between the two groups. You’ll just have to take my word for it.

    That’s Exhibit A. Exhibit B is the careful avoidance of the Sacramento area in planting any Hooter’s restaurants. Does Hooters have something against Sacramento? You would think it would be an untapped market for them. We’re the Home of the Kings! But it would appear a quick bite at Hooter’s is not on the itinerary on the way home from a Kings game. Perhaps a lot of Kings fans have wives like the one described above, and once the final buzzer has sounded, it’s “her turn” with a trip to Blockbuster to rent the latest Meg Ryan & Hugh Grant movie.

    I can’t prove that at all. But perhaps the theory can be supported with Exhibit B. I managed to find a high-quality graphic depiction of the population spread in California from tip to tip, based on the 1990 census figures. When I downloaded it, I was able to rotate it left by fifteen degrees so I could angle the map toward “True North”.

    Image Hosted by ImageShack.us

    This meant I could match it up with the Hooter’s restaurant locations, which the Hooter’s website is nice enough to arrange into an easy-to-read map — angled toward True North. After downloading that, I resized it so it would be as big, dot for dot, as the census map, which is actually enormous. Then I was able to convert it into a really cool transparency by dropping out anything that wasn’t either a state border, or a Hooter’s restaurant location. The result is an electronic version of a real overhead-projector-style transparent overlay (thumbnail only, due to size).

    Free Image Hosting at www.ImageShack.us

    Overlaying the images one on top of the other, with minor correction for deviations for scale and skew, gives us a highly-detailed illustration of where people live, and where they can go to Hooter’s. Notice that each red blotch, which is a mass of people, has at least one blue dot, which is a Hooter’s restaurant. Everywhere there are so-many-millions of people, they must be somewhat near a location. Each and every single place that has that critical mass of population. Every single one. Every one, that is, with one notable exception:

    Image Hosted by ImageShack.us

    Now, everybody has personal experiences and it’s always tempting to use those personal experiences to explain issues that aren’t personal, issues that in fact are quite public and apply in some way to everyone. So in addition to being unscientific, my exercise is not a completely valid one…but on the other hand it’s not a completely invalid one either. If you’re a woman with an ass that can’t even fit through a doorway, and your husband wants to go to Hooters, there are lots of ways to handle this. You can say “Great idea! Where are the car keys?” which may or may not work…but many women do it. You can refuse to go and refuse to allow him to go, lest he see a derriere that is more attractive than yours. This may or may not work, but many women do that. Or you can lay down a household rule that ostensibly serves “common” interests but in actuality just serves yours: An outing to Hooters must always be followed up by an evening watching the Lifetime Television Network man-bashing movie, although a Lifetime Television Network man-bashing movie does not necessarily have to be followed by a subsequent outing to Hooters.

    As a fourteen-year “native” of Sacramento, I can confidently state that the area is chock full of women from the second & third of those three groups, and sorely lacking in women from the first one.

    I suspect, although I can’t prove it, that this is why the map above looks the way it does. As the Hooter’s web site points out, the permit process is difficult, burdensome, complicated, and it varies from one location to the next; and as part of that process, “concerned citizens” get to register their comments about whether the franchise serves the public interest, and why or why not.

    And nobody ever, ever, ever, not ever, says “I don’t want a Hooter’s restaurant nearby because my ass is as big as a balcony and I don’t want my husband to see any asses smaller than mine.” No, they invent some kind of bull-crap about community standards (while up to their armpits in check-cashing places and strip bars, incidentally), or a school being nearby, or maybe if they want to be a little on the sincere side they’ll quote some feminist tripe about “it’s not the right way to look at a woman.”

    But come to the hearings, they do.

    And write letters, they do.

    And object to Hooters, whether under false pretenses or not, they do.

    And they do it here like nowhere else.

    Like I’ve said before, I’ll believe Sacramento has a Hooter’s when I’m sitting in it munching on a hot wing. Meanwhile, the closest one is a hundred and ten miles away.

    They Think They Have A Plan

    Monday, August 22nd, 2005

    They Think They Have A Plan

    Some outfit called Freedom Underground has put together a slide show designed to convince anyone who is ambivalent about the question, that they should join the Good Fight and oppose the War in Iraq. Presumably, this means bringing the troops home, since the presentation as much as says that is what we should do. Of course, those opposed to bringing the troops home, those who are afraid to bring the troops home, those who would like to bring the troops home but think a huge disaster will follow if we do so, and those who are trying to make up their minds about whether we should bring the troops home, have a serious concern. What happens in Iraq if we do this? What happens here? What’s the best that can happen? What’s the worst that can happen? The video addresses that very nicely. Um…actually no. It only addresses that concern a little bit. Er, actually, it doesn’t address that at all. In any way, whatsoever.

    But bring’em home!!! That’s responsible, isn’t it?

    One more thing you might want to absorb before downloading. The video catalogs one of President Bush’s “lies,” his now-famous sixteen words in the State of the Union Address of 2003. Sorry, Freedom Underground. If you do a little bit of research, like pulling out your readily-available Internet encyclopedia, you can see how this all came down. Latest significant thing to happen here is the Butler Report from our friends the British. You remember the British, right? As in “The British government has learned that Saddam Hussein recently sought significant quantities of uranium from Africa” — the “lie” you wanted to document in your video.

    Well, here is what the Brits had to say when Nigergate started to blow up on this side of The Pond. This is taken from the Wikipedia entry (as of this writing) on the “Yellowcake Forgery”.

    On July 14, 2004 the British Government released a report called “A Review of Intelligence on Weapons of Mass Destruction” commonly referred to as the Butler Report. The report calls President Bush’s statement regarding Niger “well founded.” The Butler Review made the following conclusions on page 139:
  • a. It is accepted by all parties that Iraqi officials visited Niger in 1999.
  • b. The British Government had intelligence from several different sources indicating that this visit was for the purpose of acquiring uranium. Since uranium constitutes almost three-quarters of Niger�s exports, the intelligence was credible.
  • c. The evidence was not conclusive that Iraq actually purchased, as opposed to having sought, uranium and the British Government did not claim this.
  • d. The forged documents were not available to the British Government at the time its assessment was made, and so the fact of the forgery does not undermine it.
  • You can get your full copy of the Butler Review here. The text cited above is in there, as promised. If this is too dry for you, you can capture the essence of it in some comments I made last month.

    We’re all educated now? Okee dokee! On with the show! And in case you’re wondering, the answer is yes. This presentation follows along in lockstep fashion with that “It’s All About Oil And Making His Buddies Rich” thing. They should come up with a tune you can hum to that someday.

    Little Engine That Could

    Sunday, August 21st, 2005

    Little Engine That Could

    I’ve commented on Intelligent Design (ID) exactly to the extent that my expertise in the matter merits, which is admittedly not much. A great hue & cry among the evolutionist community explosively insists I’ve commented well beyond that expertise, although I think all I’ve done is raise some questions and make some observations about my failures to get answers to them. I’m taking it as a simple article of faith that I do have the learned background to do that much. I’m not inclined to go much further, but the controversy about ID refuses to go away.

    Quite to the contrary, it’s getting louder and louder. Having failed thus far to instigate formal impeachment hearings on President Bush, the media and The Left have decided to hold informal hearings. The Articles are twofold: He has told lies to start an illegal and unjust war resulting in the deaths of hundreds of thousands of human beings, and he wants to allow ID to be taught in our public schools. That’s kind of funny isn’t it? It’s like saying “he has lined up a hundred and fifty Girl Scouts and sexually molested them one by one, after which he gutted them, made them watch as their own entrails were boiled in a huge kettle, ate the entrails, burned the bodies…and then he returned a couple books to the library a whole week late.” If you take Article I as a serious indictment, worthy of even casual deliberation for a possible conviction, how in the world could Article II be relevant by comparison?

    Yet both Articles are being debated loudly, and everywhere. I’ll leave this whole thing about illegal and unjust wars for elsewhere. But to rehash ID some more:

    Dan Peterson, writing in the June edition of the American Spectator, offers a thirty-thousand-foot look at the arguments for and against ID in “The Little Engine That Could…Undo Darwinism.” He makes a persuasive case, undisputed as far as I know, that the marginalization of ID is based not so much on the scientific process of forming theories based on verifiable facts, but rather something quite opposite. The facts are being excluded in order to preserve established theories.

    Severe difficulties with the Darwinian theory were becoming increasingly obvious by the 1980s, and some scientists began to state openly that design should be considered as an alternative theory. Then in 1991 Phillip Johnson…published a powerful critique of Darwinism entitled Darwin on Trial. In that volume Johnson marshaled the extensive scientific evidence against Darwinism. More importantly, he showed that Darwinism has essentially become a faith in naturalism that is immune to refutation by any set of facts. Arguments or conclusions that are not Darwinian are automatically ruled out of bounds by the scientific establishment. Within the Darwinian fold, wild conjectures, surmises unsupported by facts, and arguments lacking in explanatory power are accepted as legitimate, so long as they permit a “naturalistic” explanation.

    I really don’t care that much whether or not Bush gets his way on the ID issue, but I’m terribly concerned about how the nature of “science” is changing so that our academics can gather munitions to resist him. Like I said before: Because science is not in the opinion business, a “theory” exists as a tool internal to science, not as a product in & of itself. It appears that our scientists have manifestly failed us here. They’ve squandered their resources toward coming up with explanations to uphold Darwinism, as each piece of evidence has trickled in over time to eather inflict assault on Darwinism, or simply pose a challenge to it. Would Darwinism still survive today if it were treated like any other theory, rather than being enshrined as a sacred cow? That is something I don’t know.

    All I do know, is the things I had asked about a week ago remain unanswered as far as I’m concerned. And I’m also concerned about something else: In response to my queries, several scholars have suggested to me, with varying degrees of politeness, that I need to get an education on the impressive, awe-inspiring mountain of evidence supporting a different theory referred to as macro-evolution.

    In other words, given a debate on how seriously the ID theory should be taken, there is a scattering of non-collaborating pundits who prefer to shift the debate to the soundness of macro-evolution. Maybe I do need to get that education — I don’t understand the connection. I don’t understand the mutual-exclusivity. I don’t think anybody does.

    To debate whether design is involved in the origin of what we call “life,” and shift the argument to how the various species are interrelated, is like debating whether a pizza was home-baked or delivered and shifting the argument to whether that topping is properly called “ham” or “Canadian Bacon.”

    Sincerity Returned Where None Was Offered

    Friday, August 19th, 2005

    Sincerity Returned Where None Was Offered

    One of the most powerful arguments used by the anti-war left, to date, exists as a rhetorical question: “If you think this war has a noble cause, why don’t you enlist?” It’s an insincere question, because no answer can be offered that will soothe the anti-war passions of the person inquiring. This is easily proven.

    What’s the most convincing answer that can be given? “Right you are, I’m on my way to the recruiter’s office.” Thousands upon thousands of people have already offered that very answer. They enlisted. They served. Some of them got deployed. Some of them fought, some of them died. In the face of that, the fact that the question is still being asked of others, proves that the question is immaterial.

    But I’m a believer in being sincere when these arguments are explored, even if the other party isn’t so sincere. “Because they want guys half my age” would be an accurate answer, but it would not be a sincere answer.

    Sincerity doesn’t simply arrive at truth; it consists of truth. And the truth here is, if I were to enlist, and somehow accepted, my enlistment would be irrelevant to the argument — as demonstrated above. The truth is, also, that we have a faction of private citizens who have the right to speak out in favor of the war, because they do not serve. We can’t win without these people. Without any opposition to the noisy, angry, bitter Government-Entertainment Complex of the Left, support for the war would evaporate overnight. The morale of our troops would deteriorate bit by bit — a pretty awful scenario, although admittedly, it’s not my job to do anything about it. However, public sentiment would turn toward bringing the troops home no matter the consequences. Then we’d leave Iraq and Afghanistan, in disgrace.

    This would happen regardless of whether things went okay on the battlefield or not.

    There is precedence for this in Vietnam.

    So in the interest of responding to the question truthfully, with sincerity returned where none was offered, I give my answer. “I’m remaining a civilian so I can keep my right to speak out against people like you. Somebody has to.”

    Follow-up: “Why is it important to you that everybody who disagrees with you, enlists, and thus abdicates their right to say anything? Is this what it takes for you to prevail?”

    You’re Not Allowed To Say This

    Friday, August 19th, 2005

    You’re Not Allowed To Say This

    Cliff Kincaid, writing for Men’s Health Daily, speaks the unspeakable that our Government-Entertainment Complex elitist layers will not allow to be uttered in “Al Qaeda Loves Our Unpatriotic Media”. It is exactly what it sounds like.

    We have to face up to the fact that the enemy has the U.S. on the run, using our own media against us. When Al Qaeda’s number two man, Ayman al-Zawahiri, recently threatened a Vietnam in Iraq, he was referring to an American defeat but it’s clear that he was not just referring to the military aspect of the conflict. The U.S. was not defeated militarily in Vietnam. We lost because our own media came to believe it was a cause not worth fighting. That caused the American people to lose heart and the Congress to cut and run. We are seeing the same thing happen in regard to Iraq. And the worst may be yet to come.

    If I live to be three hundred years old I will never forget how this went down. The aforementioned Government-Entertainment Complex elitist layer of our society, has been censoring this kind of speech the way they censor everything else: Through ridicule.

    They turn it around a hundred and eighty degrees. With a battle cry of “free speech for me but not for thee!” they ridicule anybody who would declare a polar difference, or even a nominal difference, between patriotism and slandering of our executive branch. Attacks on the cabinet-level officers, attacks on the generals, even attacks on enlisted men can never be called “unpatriotic,” or any synonym for same, nor can any doubt be expressed that even fallacious attacks are anything but patriotic — or else onward comes the ridicule. They even ridiculed this preliminarily, making their point by saying “my patriotism has been questioned” when the facts were not on their side.

    I personally find that fascinating. It’s a kind of weird censorship-through-slander-about-alleged-censorship. Up until now, we’ve all known that the anti-war leftists in fact enjoy much greater freedom of speech than anyone else, de facto if not de jeure. Even observing that is an idea that has not been allowed to resonate, because as we observe it individually, we’re not allowed to communicate it with each other.

    Weird as it may seem, you’re reading what may save us. Not this particular blog, of course, because as I keep pointing out nobody reads this blog. But the bloggers will save us.

    No longer are we connected to a central authority such as Jennings/Cronkite/Rather/Brokaw, like spokes connected to a hub. News travels differently now. You read my blog, I read yours. The connections look more like the strands of a net. There is no “hub”.

    I have the view that real democracy is a pipe dream, until we fully eradicate that bicycle-spokes model. With no hub, I get to write posts on my blog that say “Hey wait a minute…what reason does Tim Robbins have for thinking the White House was behind efforts to shut him up?” You can read what I write, and if you disagree, ignore it; but if you agree, now you have the same question. Now we have two people wondering the same thing, and from then on it’s like the shampoo commercial. You tell two friends, and so on, and so on.

    The Robbins-Sarandon-style of censorship has every chance of success with the bicycle-spokes model. Practically guaranteed success. Tim Robbins can give a speech filled with examples of private-sector censorship — which do not infringe upon First Amendment guarantees, in any way — and gratuitously, with nothing to back up the connection at all, attach these instances to the White House, in effect manufacturing a serious constitutional transgression. The blogosphere can peel this sham like a grapefruit, as millions of us sync up asking the obvious and unanswered question: “Waitaminnit! What has this to do with the government censoring you?”

    If the Brokaw/Rather/Jennings trio simply dipped a microphone into such a tirade and showed clips of it, perhaps playing the entire thing back for us, without a way for us to interconnect there’d be nothing else for us to do…except sit there and nod dutifully, “why, that George W. Bush. That dirty rat. I know you were behind all these things, Tim Robbins said so. And he’s been in way more movies than you have.”

    I don’t mean to imply that Cliff Kincaid must be right simply because there is an effort to shut up people like him. That would be pretending I don’t know of one of the “Things I Know” (#20). But I do agree with Mr. Kincaid, and it’s interesting to note how much resistance such a sentiment arouses when it is spoken. Resistance, that is, with plenty of ridicule, condescension, condemnation, recoil and malicious jocularity — but lacking much, if any, persuasive argument as to why we should not agree.

    Democrats Change a Mind

    Friday, August 19th, 2005

    Democrats Change a Mind

    I’m not going to use the names “Cindy” or “Sheehan” in my headlines anymore. I may never use those names in the text of my posts, if I can get away with it. There are two reasons for this.

    • A little while ago I referred to a letter to this activist as “the second-to-last thing I’ll ever have to say about this”. “This,” of course, was the extended — or never-ending — demonstration being held by this activist in Crawford, TX. The phrase “second-to-last,” you might have guessed, is a reference to the prospect that there may be an upcoming meeting between the activist and President Bush. Of course I would want to say something about that. But the Democrat Party Machine, true to form, has smelled victory where they smell blood, as opposed to catching a whiff of it where they think they have a point of principle to make. We live in a world, whether I like it or not, where princes in ivory towers get to decide what is “news”. Aliens could be attacking us with superlasers that wipe out whole cities in a single blast, and if the princes in their ivory towers decide Jessica Simpson’s divorce is what’s news, we’re all going to talk about Jessica Simpson’s divorce. So lately we’ve all been talking about the activist. My previous pledge notwithstanding, I can’t avoid this activist anymore — but I don’t have to buy into the hype about her personal connection to this war. Which brings me to…
    • Her identity, and her personal life, have nothing whatsoever to do with the story. An activist is what she is. By now it is a matter of proven fact that she is not an “every-mom” who got that terrible knock-at-the-door, telling her her son was killed, and “decided” that the war was unjust, Bush is a bad man who is murdering thousands of people, etc. etc. etc. She is an activist who has been spouting some of this stuff for years, and since she’s made her new friends, is now spouting kookier and kookier stuff. Because she’s made the friends. Point being, her son dying in Iraq has little-to-nothing to do with forming the opinions she has, only, maybe, intensifying them somewhat. Her “son” might as well have been an ex-roomate’s husband’s brother’s ex-wife’s stepson killed in Iraq, for all it really has to do with the issues she wants to discuss. She’s not a product, she’s a label to slap on a previously-existing product. Democrats have found the product, which is a bottle of the same bullcrap they’ve been hawking for years now, sells better with that label. She is nothing more than this. If she’s a reminder that there are parents who have lost children in Iraq, then this has meaning only for people who forgot this in the first place. I’m not one of those people, and I don’t feel like writing anything addressed to the attention of those people.

    Those bullets are not written well, because we have a lot of people who can read them a few times and look up and go “huh”? I know this. But like I said, these are issues that simply aren’t going to resonate with certain people, and no amount or quality of writing is ever going to change that.

    But some people are aware of things. This guy gets it, for example. I caught wind of this via Bob Krumm, who hailed it as a “must read“. I found out about Krumm’s post, in turn, from Best of the Web.

    Cindy sealed the deal.

    I actually felt myself become a republican today. It was around 10am, when I read the latest update of the Cindy Sheehan saga in CNN.com. I then shot over to read some blogs about it, and perused the comments in some of them, which was nothing but a long series of petty (albeit entertaining) partisan bickering.

    Then it happend. The good little democrat in me tied the little noose around his neck and jumped off the stool. He just couldn�t take it anymore.

    Take what? The whining. The constant whining by the extreme left about the reasons for war, the incompetence of this administration, and how we�ve all been lied to, and how we should pull out of Iraq immediately, because, *gulp* our soldiers were in danger.

    Guess what folks�.they signed up to join the Army, not the boy scouts. Anytime your orientation to a new job involves an automatic weapon, you should be smart enough to figure out there�s danger involved. I actually read some people�s comments about many of the soldiers over there being naive�.they weren�t expecting to go to war, so, they should be allowed to go home. Wow.

    Soldiers know, when they enlist, that it is entirely possible they will be shipped out and never come home. It�s part of the job. The fact that people still walk in to recruiters� offices and sign that piece of paper make them heroes. To imply that they are simple kids who didn�t know what they were getting into, or even worse, that they died for no reason, or an immoral reason, does a horrible thing. It strips their sacrifice of the honor that it deserves. Even though those folks sitting out there in the Texas fields claim to honor and support the soldiers, they obviously have been blinded by their own selfishness as to the real way to support them.

    Because, long story short, we can�t end this war now. That would send the message that those bastardly little terrorists have won. It doesn�t matter if the adminstration told us the desert sand was made of gold, and we are going over there to collect it in little buckets to bring home, the concrete fact that we are at war doesn�t change. We are there, and we have a job to finish. We�ve toppled a regime that was dangerous not only to its own people, but also to the rest of the world. Now, we are there fighting the same terrorists we are fighting in Afghanistan. We�ve given liberty to millions of people, and we�re trying to help create a government, in an area that is very volatile, that will be a bastion of freedom and hope for an entire race of people. I hate the fact that our boys are getting killed over there, and I wish it didn�t have to happen.

    But, it is, there�s nothing we can do about it, except for doing everything we can to offer support and hope to the folks fighting over there. Arguing and whining about the reasons we�re there, and the need to come home not only kills morale, but it is a complete waste of time.

    I just re-read the above post, and I apologize for the rambling�.just needed to vent a little. Here�s a breakdown of the way I see things:
    -right or wrong, we�re at war. no amount of yelling will fix that now.
    -we have to finish the job. HAVE TO. it may take another 1800 soldiers, but it has to be done
    -whether or not we�re there for the right reason, we�ve done something great for that country

    I never was a big fan of Bush. But, one thing I do believe�.he honestly wants to make this country, and this world a better place. Think about it�the war almost cost him the election. If we hadn�t invaded Iraq, he�d have won in a landslide.

    I think it�s just my personality that lead me to this decision. I think the left is too concerned with everyone�s immediate rights and needs, and refuses to sacrifice a bit of comfort and happiness in the present, for something that will make life better for everyone in the future. You can take the environmental stance on that, and I�d have no argument�but I think there enough conservatives concerned with that to make it a moot point.

    Mostly, I�m just really pissed off. We�re in a crappy situation, and it�s time for all of America to stand together, put on the big boy pants, and get through the next few years.

    The three bullet points are particularly enlightening. All of life is like this, folks. You can whine, or you can do.

    The jug-o-rum being sold behind the label with this activist’s face printed on it, is a very simple elixir with a very simple formula: We don’t do. We whine.

    The elixir says, we should not have gone into Iraq, but now that we’re in, we must get out. And George Bush is a big doo-doo head, by the way.

    But getting out would be really bad. Few people dispute this, and nobody is providing a credible argument for why it wouldn’t be bad.

    And having not gone in in the first place, would be really bad. Few people dispute that, and nobody is providing a credible argument for why that wouldn’t have been bad.

    I’m not sure which is worse: Not going in, or getting out now. We will never really “know” the answer to that. But I join millions in welcoming Scott Randolph to the fold of those who get it.

    Update: According to Mr. Krumm, there is a whole new bandwidth issue now that Rush Limbaugh has read about this post on the air.

    No, no, no. Scott Randolph’s post. Not this. I keep telling you people, “nobody reads this blog.” Certainly not Rush.

    For The Anti-Death-Penalty Types

    Thursday, August 18th, 2005

    For The Anti-Death-Penalty Types

    There are people, out there, some of them running around free-as-a-bird, with exactly the same rights you & I have, like this.

    Person County Sheriff Dennis Oakley said 27-year-old Ray Anthony Paylor was holding his son, Shawdeen, in their kitchen when two or three men broke into their Colonial Estates Road home in Hurdles Mills at about 9 a.m. and fired a gun…”We don’t know if it was a home invasion, if it was a robbery or it was a vengence thing. We don’t know yet.” Shawdeen Paylor, who would have turned 2 years in old in October, was shot in the head and was pronounced dead on arrival at UNC Hospitals. Ray Paylor was shot in the abdomen and underwent surgery at UNC Hospitals. Officials said his injuries were not life-threatening.

    Something to think about when we debate whether governments have the right, upon conviction of truly hideous crimes, to take life. I’d like to know how the innocent can be protected if people like this aren’t whittled out.

    Two Million Dollar Man

    Thursday, August 18th, 2005

    Two Million Dollar Man

    I am worth $1,967,460 on HumanForSale.com

    My Statistics

    Gender: Male $200,000
    Age: 39 $20,000
    Ethnicity: White/Caucasian $130,000
    Height: 6’0 $10,000
    Weight: 204 lbs. $0
    Body Type: Athletic $25,000
    Hair Color: Brown $5,000
    Eye Color: Blue $1,000
    Handed: Right $5,000
    Body Hair: Somewhat Hairy $1,000
    Shoe Size: 10 $1,000
    Bald: No $15,000
    20/20 Eyesight: Yes $5,000
    Bra Size: NA $0
    Cavities: None $5,000
    Athletic Ability: Above Average $75,000
    Attractiveness: NA $100,000
    IQ: 135 $195,030
    SAT Score: NA $0
    HS GPA: 2.6 $24,700
    Education: High School $1,000
    Bilingual: No $0
    Income: NA $0
    Profession: NA $0
    Alcohol: Seldom $0
    Smoker: No $15,000
    Pot: No $10,000
    Drugs: No $10,000
    Exercise: Often $15,000
    Divorced: Yes ($25,000)
    Comitted Felony: No $15,000
    Watch Television: Never $0
    Sexuality: NA $25,000
    Style: Below Average $20,000
    Artistic: Above Average $45,000
    Sense of Humor: Below Average $20,000
    Addictive Personality: No $10,000
    Give to Charity: Yes $25,000
    Adult Content: Occasionally $0
    Gamble: Never $0
    Multiplier x2
    Total: $1,967,460


    Total: $1,967,460

    Outrage!

    Thursday, August 18th, 2005

    Outrage!

    One of the things that fascinate me about the intellectual differences between conservatives and liberals, is this tactic liberals tend to have of arguing through outrage. (Sometime later, I’ll get around to “arguing through calling the other person stupid.”) This is where you respond to the recitation of a fact, or reasonable inference, or proposition of what to do, or article of faith, by proclaiming a sense of outrage you have that properly ought to be resonating with everyone.

    This allows you to save face while being non-intellectual. You don’t have to confront the fact, opinion, proposition of what to do, or article of faith.

    California Assemblyman Mark Leno, from the 13th district, just managed to squeek out a textbook-case of this, and upon further research from me it emerges that this was a repeat performance. He was confronted by the following:

    Gov. Schwarzenegger is going after the vigilante-justice vote. He’s announced his support for a bill to require one-time sex offenders to wear a GPS device for the rest of their lives. The bill probably won’t get much support from Democrats, since it has no Democrat co-sponsors. This is how he chose to address that:

    “I think there’s certain issues that Republicans have interest in, like public safety,” he said. “Then there’s other issues that the Democrats have more interest in. That’s just the way it works here. But we’re really looking forward to working together with Democrats and Republicans.”

    Okay, this is fairly simple. Republicans are interested in public safety, Democrats are interested in something that isn’t public safety. Which he’s leaving undefined. And you know, when you think about it that isn’t even a slam — Democrats could be interested in all kinds of noble things. They could be interested in the rights of the accused, they could be interested in budget, hell, they could even be interested in the environment. Those are good things.

    Being bought-off or blackmailed by perverts would be a bad thing. But the Governor didn’t say anything like that.

    Assemblyman Leno, now, chose to address this. Pay attention to the excerpt closely. He’s going to disagree with Governor Schwarzenegger. How does he do this? Does he refute the notion that Democrats and Republicans are interested in different things? Does he establish that Democrats are concerned about public safety? Does he attack the notion that Republicans are interested in public safety? Does he contest the statement that that’s the way it works here? Let’s take a look.

    That comment drew an immediate condemnation from Assemblyman Mark Leno, D-San Francisco, chairman of the Assembly Public Safety Committee.

    “Of all the reckless, partisan statements he’s made the last couple of years, that’s the most egregious,” Leno said. “If they’re going forward without a single Democratic co-sponsor, they either didn’t try or they don’t care.”

    The statement is reckless, partisan and egregious.

    How much of it is true? How much of it is not? Why is it true? Why is it not? Ah, if you want to know such things then you’re not part of Mark Leno’s audience. You people who want to be told what you’re supposed to think about something, step right up, Leno has pre-packaged outrage for you. If you’re seeking confirmation or denial, new things to consider, reasoned dissent, you’ve come to the wrong place.

    If this seems familiar, it’s probably because Assemblyman Leno was leading the charge against Governor Schwarzenegger a year ago when the Gov. referred to California’s state legislature as a bunch of “Girlie Men“. Let’s take a look at what he said back then:

    Assemblyman Mark Leno, a San Francisco Democrat who is chairman of the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Caucus, said the comment was “as misogynist as it is anti-gay.” “To disparage a group of law abiding tax paying citizens is just wrong,” Leno said.

    There’s a fundamentally different view at work here, about how our government is supposed to work. People who think like me, think it’s up to the voters and the Constitution to determine what’s “just wrong”. People we vote into office, translate those values into positions, and then the positions into action. Mark Leno seems to think it’s the job of the noble, inspired elites to decide these things for the commoners. What politicians like those need from unwashed masses like us, I don’t know.

    But the point is, when politicians do this, on average, people start to tune out. They lose interest in politics. Watching a bunch of legislators get all agitated about each other, is about as exciting as watching car salesmen or insurance executives get agitated about each other. The human brain has a natural gland built into it, that sends out a chemical carrying the thought “eh, you know what, I don’t have a dog in this hunt.” It makes us sleepy when we sense lots of angst shared by several parties, on an issue we don’t know too much about. Call it the “I think American Idol is on” enzyme.

    It also makes Mark Leno look bad. But in addition to that, it makes Arnold Schwarzenegger look bad too. It’s a worthwhile exercise in an adversarial relationship, because when Mark Leno sends his own approval rating down a point, he sends the Governor’s rating down by two.

    And it doesn’t address the issue.

    The Governor may be right, he may be wrong. At the end of the day, the question is left unresolved. That’s a good thing, for anybody who may be damaged by the truth.

    Circular Logic

    Monday, August 15th, 2005

    Circular Logic

    Lately I notice when I part company with someone on The Left, the parting of company takes place at some point where the leftist confuses fact & opinion. There is a dizzy spell that immediately precedes this, as I follow along the case they’ve presented, trying to find the nugget of compelling argument shaping the soft opinion into a hard, established fact. A little while ago I noticed one of these arguments, a very popular one, was in fact circular, which means there was no such compelling nugget anywhere in it. A was proved by B but along the way, C was presumed; C relied on D; D was proven because A said so.

    Then I noticed another leftist argument worked this way, and then another and another. “Jimmy Carter deserved his Nobel Peace Prize because he is a very smart man; he is in favor of things like getting the United States out of Iraq; we know those policies are sound, because they’re backed by noted Nobel Peace Prize recipients; such as, for example, Jimmy Carter.” Like that.

    I’ve decided to start a collection.

  • That George W. Bush is so stupid. Why is he stupid? Because he won’t admit that he is wrong. Why is he wrong? Because he won’t pull out of Iraq. Why should he do this? Because we never should have gone in there. And how do we know we shouldn’t have gone in there? Because George W. Bush put us there, and he’s stupid.
  • George W. Bush is doing so many things wrong. Like what? Like nominating John Roberts to the Supreme Court. What’s wrong with John Roberts? He is an extreme conservative unfit for the bench. And how do we know this? Because he was nominated by George W. Bush.
  • Michael Moore may be a proven liar, but you really should see his movie. Why? Because while he lies like a rug, there are a lot of things in his movie that are true. Like what? Like all of it! How do we know it’s true? Because Michael Moore said so.
  • FOX News is biased. How do we know this? Because it reports things that aren’t reported in the New York Times. Why should we believe the New York Times? Because it doesn’t report the same things as FOX News.
  • I’m the real patriot! Why? Because I’m speaking out against policies that are hurting the country. What policies are those? The PATRIOT Act. How does the PATRIOT Act hurt the country? It’s designed to stop people like me from speaking out. Why would it do that? Because I’m the real patriot.
  • You’re stupid. Why am I stupid? Because you won’t agree with me. Why should I? Because everybody else does, except for stupid people. Like who? Like you.
  • Global Warming is proven. What makes you say that? All scientists agree on it. Well wait a minute, these scientists don’t. They don’t count, they’re not real scientists. What makes a scientist a real scientist? If he agrees Global Warming is real.
  • Bush is not a real President. Why not? Because nobody voted for him. Well, I did. You don’t count. Why don’t I count? Because you voted for a loser like George Bush.
  • Bush is fooling everybody. What makes you say that? Because three quarters of all Americans believe Saddam Hussein was behind the September 11 attacks. Okay, what is your proof that Saddam wasn’t behind them? It’s one of those things Bush is saying when he’s trying to fool me, like he fools everyone else.