Sunday, December 14, 2008

Congratulate me, I'm a certified phlebotomist.Also, 100% of

Congratulate me, I'm a certified phlebotomist.

Also, 100% of the votes are in, and the 2008 Christmas card has been chosen.

L and I stayed home today because he has a bery bad code. I am fighting it off with Zicam, which works pretty well for me - alas, we caught his cold a little late.

So lots of football, online Christmas shopping, and reading The Kitchen Boy and The Private Patient.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Help pick the Christmas card!

Choose A:
Or B:

Intermittent babble about boring me, economy, coal in the stocking and MIDWESTERN MOVIE REVIEW!!!

Okay, the all-caps and exclamation points were seriously not warranted.

Wow, am I boring. Don't even show up for my own blog. I could be pasting in pictures of My Little Pony or other things I want for Christmas. Not expecting much, though... I've been a very, very bad girl, and I'm sure the info's trickled up to Santa.

Speaking of not expecting much: Been lookin' at home sales in our area. It's gonna be bad, soon as the aid money for the GM and GM-related layoffs peters out and people realize that there's no Dodge or Honda on the horizon waiting to swoop in and take over the plant and save those 3,000+ jobs.

Better get your house on the block by January - moderate homes are on the market in excess of 120 days. I guess the good news is that they're selling at all.

Kills me - the local business bureau has launched an ad campaign to get people motivated and going to the local Tech College. So they can then move to Madison, Rockford or Milwaukee and environs for the jobs we no longer have for them. Smart Choice!

Midwestern Movie Review, as promised
So we watched 30 Days of Night last night. Gory, Nosferatu-like vampire leader who speaks some form of old high German or related Transelvanic language; cool young everyday hero and heroine; devil child and angel child show up (**spoiler parenthetical:**anyone from the upper Midwest will guess the former by her inappropriate clothing, but she's still so cute!); not too scary-suspenseful; lots of Strategery! None of it over-scripted, and all of it in the dark, in the snow. Yay, winter!

Heh, an appropriate pic from my childhood:

Nah, I was never that cute. More like this:

Now go get ready for Hannukkah or it'll sneak up on you again this year, even though it's not 'til the 21st. I'm off to get my phlebotomy certificate tomorrow in the city.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Fighting back

It's saved thousands of children from abduction.

It's the posture being taken in schools and colleges in response to and preparation for Columbine- and Dekalb-style mass murder attempts.

What do the two have in common? Preparing younger children in an uncontrollable world.

To some, "To put that expectation on young, emotional, scared, frightened children is really a slippery slope," says Kenneth Trump, the president of National School Safety and Security Services. "It has a high risk and higher probability of escalating a situation than it would to neutralize the situation."

Frankly, my kids wouldn't need anyone besides me to teach them this: Be aware of your surroundings, look for protection options (escape, blockade, hiding places) and weapon options, and remember that when your life is threatened by knife or gun, no option is off the table including any sort of first-strike opportunity.

But my kids' lives may depend on other kids knowing their options, too.

Why be afraid to teach them? What's the worst that could happen - they freeze in someone's gunsights? They have anxiety that this could happen to them? Sadly, these are realities without the schools stepping in. Give the kids options.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

So Obama says, "I had no contact with the governor or his

So Obama says, "I had no contact with the governor or his office, and so I was not aware of what was happening" concerning any possible dealing about Blagojevich's appointment of a successor.

I'm not surprised by Blagojevich at all. But what about the Obama flak who listened to Blago without saying, "You know what you're doing is illegal." And passing it on to the athoriTIs.

Change, Obama, means not letting this scum grow in your shadow if you know about it. And your people clearly did.

And I'm not looking for a cheap Repub pile-on here - I'd really like Obama to be a great President in whose footsteps few can follow.

Friday, December 5, 2008

Interesting poll at Janesville Gazette online

Poll question:
How do you think the state should handle a projected $5 billion budget deficit?
The winning answer surprised me.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

More wisdom from the road

Following up on my PSA of last Thursday, Braggadocio is a place in Missouri.

Being that it's also in Pemiscot County, it's no exageration to say you shouldn't do anything that might earn you a moving violation if your plates are not Missouri plates.

Friday, November 28, 2008

You know by now that I'm fascinated by beetles and bees, and

You know by now that I'm fascinated by beetles and bees, and many other members of the class insecta.

Did you know that they make up more than two-thirds of all known organisms?

Thursday, November 27, 2008

GMC Public Service Announcement

When passing through certain counties in Missouri, such as Pemiscot County, an out-of-stater like me should know: if you are stopped and ticketed for a moving violation like a speeding ticket (I so was not doing 86 mph), they will arrest you and take you to the county courthouse (jail) until you can post bond and pay your fine.

I kid you not, and I am grateful to Officer Parrot of the Missouri State po po for not taking me down. And I was not doing 86.

And happy Thanksgiving!

Friday, November 21, 2008

Home for the Holiday

Ahhh. Thanksgiving! Glorious foodstuffs, family and friends!

Maybe you're looking down the nose of a squab(ble) instead of just turkey. Here's help so you'll have something to be thankful for. At my house, we just watch Home for the Holidays.

'Really, Taft?'

Speculation over at Owen's about Osama bin Laden being 'cave temperature' reminded me of this.

"Would I still be anchor if Zimbabwe invaded us?"

If only I could figure out how to embed the thing...

Thursday, November 20, 2008

News Qs

Funny article about Ashley Dupre, the hooker who took down New York Governor Elliot Spitzer, about her 'worklike' appearance in People versus her granny-style outfit for her Diane Sawyer interview. C'mon. Who ever expected Dupre to do something smart?

Also from Fox is a piece about the cyber-bullying trial of the woman who created a personality that sent a 13-year-old over the edge. It's all about TOS, and not about causing the suicide or even stalking. Should it be? I'm torn on this one. And I'd bet the jury and judge will make her pay because of the outcome. I also expect that the local police, who ignored the mom's early concerns about the fictitous boyfriend, are next in line.

Hmmm... whom to believe? "UAW to Congress: Get a deal done," or "No need for bailout, say diners near thriving car plant." Just because those average Joes see the Honda plant thriving, with a recent $75 million expansion, doesn't mean they know more than union bigwigs. Then again, once you start hand-outs, expect a line to form quickly. Who do you think will jump on board next?

Related: "Big Three auto CEOs flew private jets to ask for taxpayer money."

Monday, November 17, 2008

The White Stag

This beauty was found - and legally harvested - in Rock County. Sure, they may be a dime-a-dozen up around St. Germaine and Eagle River, but they're the mythical white stag down here.

“I didn’t believe him at first. I thought he was pulling my leg,” Avery said.

Hanewold and his friends returned to find the deer the following day.

They saw the albino lying dead. It was much different than normal deer. It had soft, fine white hair like a rabbit. It also had a bushy tail like a horse.

“It’s body was glowing in the woods as white as it was,” Avery said. “I’m telling you, I’m at a loss for words.”

It was one of the best days the men have had in the woods. They had only previously seen albino deer displayed in museums or shows.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

'Oh Bwunhiwduh, you'we so wuvwy'

Though Bugs chirps the less-than-demure response to Elmer Fudd's adulation, the question remains: Does he know it? Can he help it?

Bugs Bunny: flamin' mo, or mere transvestite?


See discussion here and here. He's also rumored to have a lot in common with Sammy Davis, Jr.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Is it just me, or is it kinda late for this?

ABC News interviews Bill Ayers.

Bonus news, political tolerance edition:

The Catherine Vogt Experiment

"One person told me to go die. It was a lot of dying. A lot of comments about how I should be killed. "

..."In one class, I had one teacher say she will not judge me for my choice, but that she was surprised that I supported [read the article to find out]," Catherine said.

If Catherine was shocked by such passive-aggressive threats from instructors, just wait until she goes to college.

"Later, that teacher found out about the experiment and said she was embarrassed because she knew I was writing down what she said," Catherine said.

One student suggested that she be put up on a cross for her political beliefs."He said, 'You should be crucifixed.' It was kind of funny because, I was like, don't you mean 'crucified?' " Catherine said.

Hard to follow up "the weight of glory" - things like Flanders

Hard to follow up "the weight of glory" - things like Flanders Fields and the courage to outlive evil when it makes the world its hell - with stories about how Jennifer Aniston is mad at Angelina Jolie, and finally says so, or Barack patted Bush on the back, then blabbed too much of what they talked about.

I should paint. I have a marvelous shot I took while driving back from town yesterday on one of my favorite roads west of the Rock - an amazing sky full of taupes, greys and mauves, and a landscape full of blue-black, greens and browns.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Veterans Day 2008

Humble thanks to all our veterans. A Veterans Day message from Corporal Acevedo:

His message on this Veterans Day, he says, is never to hold animosity toward anybody.

"You only live once. Let's keep trucking. If we don't do that, who's going to do it for us? We have to be happy. Why hate?" he says. "The world is full of hate, and yet they don't know what they want."

Remembrance Day poppies to all our good men and women.

'We had to sign an affidavit ... [saying] we never went through what we went through. We weren't supposed to say a word'

I've been fascinated since childhood by WWII Europe. My shelves are lined with personal accounts; the first books I read on my own were The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich and Corrie Ten Boom's The Hiding Place.

But many personal accounts were supressed "to protect escape and evasion techniques and the names of personnel who helped POW escapees," said Frank Shirer, the chief historian at the U.S. Army Center for Military History.

Thankfully, brave people like Anthony Acevedo, a 20-year-old medic who was captured and sent to a Buchenwald satellite camp, are sharing their experiences for modern generations - crucial to understanding how such inhumanity can flourish and its untenable price.

That is our true hope for 'never again.'

Monday, November 10, 2008

Screw 'drill here, drill now'

I want one of these things: "Portable Nuclear 'Hot Tubs' Could Power America."

I may have to wait for the smaller version. Maybe we can get the township to go in on it with us...

More bad fiscal policy coming?

How much more do your representatives want you to pony up?

Could be a lot, especially if you're older, you've worked longer, you're more frugal, and you make more than others:

"Dems Target Private Retirement Accounts: Democratic leaders in the U.S. House discuss confiscating 401(k)s, IRAs."

This mother of all redistribution programs could dwarf the recent trillion-dollar bank fiasco.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

More transition fun

After eight years of wearing Milkbone underwear, Bush finally turns the tables on reporters:

Get 'em, Barney!

Via Wendy.

Additional thoughts: What idiot approaches a strange dog with his hand palm-down and above the dog's head? And then - yes, I know the White House doc gave the advice and is being extra cautious here - takes antiobiotics for the nip he gets?!? Do not take this man to the zoo.

Friday, November 7, 2008

Spent the day getting a spinal injection - fun! - and having a

Spent the day getting a spinal injection - fun! - and having a friend take delightful care of me.

Two items I'm gonna read/view when I'm up to it:

"Donna Brazile: A letter to the losers."

"Dr. Gupta: Obama's health promises."

Now, to watch the snow fall and then off for a hot shower.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Got up to get a drink of water, then wandered over to my compy

Got up to get a drink of water, then wandered over to my compy to noodle while I drank it.

Can't get the ad outta my thoughts that ran tonight - think it was on the TVLand station during the 3rd Rock From the Sun hour - that had me and you and them and everyone pledging to support President Obama in any way we can.

The h377?!? I didn't do that for Bush. There are many issues on which pols and the people don't agree, to whom pols should be held accountable, and I'll uphold democracy to the gulag. So don't push it, folks.

Is he just trying to burn off that kazillion in "small" donations while extending the media "feel good" support? Save it for a rainy day, dude.

Rifling the cupboards

The Chicago Tribune reports Pres.-elect Obama's cabinet picks.

Who should take over for Condi?

Sen. John Kerry? Sen. Richard Lugar (Indiana, ranking Repub on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee)? Or Gov. Bill Richardson? I don't know about Lugar, but I'm leaning toward somebody else altogether. Condi, for one. Since the di is already cast, I consider it a two-way race between Richardson and Lugar.

Of course, Kerry could be a ridiculously delightful return to the Madeleine Albright days.

Defense secretary could be a more intensely scrutinized pick, currently between yet another senator, Chuck Hagel, Sen. Sam Nunn (former chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee), Bush's Defense Secretary Robert Gates (ha! I say), the real pick being Obama's campaign advisor on national security, former Navy Secretary Richard Danzig, and last on the list, Clintonite deputy defense secty. John Hamre, in a nod to the Clintons.

I think AG is either still up in the air, or Chicago-based U.S. attorney Patrick Fitzgerald of Scooter Libby Plamegate/grand jury fame has it in the bag.

Protesting democracy

May feel good for awhile, but it accomplishes little: "Several Gay Marriage Ban Protesters Arrested in Clashes With Police in California."

As the Yes on 8 lady notes in the article, the voters have spoken on the matter - twice. What she leaves out is the change in the numbers.

In 2000, similar prop 22 passed by 62%. Prop 8 passed by 52%. In four years at the outside the numbers will invert, and voters will carry the issue - no more contentious rulings that seem to flout the will of the people.

Will ban supporters protest then? Unlikely.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

*L* has me up late watching the WEC replay from last weekend.

L has me up late watching the WEC replay from last weekend.

Guess there's no point in live-blogging it, but we really thought Jaw-breaker Pulver was gonna blow away that freaky little spaz guy, and we were both totally disgusted with Filho's disqualifying weigh-in, the decision to let him keep his belt (by whom, we wanna know), but most of all by his embarrassing - shall we say - "floor" display.

Yup, no point in live-blogging - Mike Brown just mopped the floor with Urija Faber, mugging him of his WEC Featherweight belt. Catch the replay when you can.

The Good News

Is salvation through grace.

We got some of that in this election. What I'm glad about:

For people of color the world over, race can now be seen as a positive issue in getting elected, even to the highest office. Like conservatives over the past eight years, they will come to know the joys and pains of having someone you voted for try to make crucial decisions that everyone will have to live with. Congratulations.

The popular vote leaves conservatives not completely dismayed, while the electoral trouncing ensures we won't go through any battles like in 2000.

There is a national focus for race issues to play out - may we get more of them behind us and draw closer to MLK's dream.

Conservatives will have time to reconsider why they are out - they could come to the conclusion that they are too much like their Dem colleagues and reembrace conservatism. It certainly would have been little more than the discussion it's been for the past eight years if McCain - RHINO that he is - had won.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Assume crash position, but go vote first

How long have people been talking about high voter turnout and voter fraud? So you'd expect some preparation was done, you know, checking voter rolls and being prepared for all of them to show up; checking driver's licenses at check-in, etc.

In one of my favorite editorial stretches of late, Fox puts up on it's main page, "Government on High Alert for Voter Fraud."

What color is that?

Anyway, the article has a more appropriate title - "Expected High Voter Turnout Has Government Officials, Watchdog Groups on Alert."

If you want to know what the next two months' fight will be over (mostly preparation and technology - Virginia, for one, isn't worried about its machines breaking down, so they aren't going to have paper ballots on hand), read it.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Meet axolotl.Or not. This cool little guy may be a salamander,

Meet axolotl.
Or not. This cool little guy may be a salamander, have regenerative powers, and be a major player in the Aztec pantheon, but he's also choking to death in stinky Lake Xochimilco.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

European Court of Justice could weaken the fight against terrorism

Problematic: "Terrorism Financing Blacklists At Risk."

In September, the European Court of Justice threw the future of the United Nations' sanctions program against al-Qaeda and the Taliban into doubt when it declared the blacklist violated the "fundamental rights" of those targeted. The Luxembourg-based court said the list lacked accountability and made it almost impossible for people to challenge their inclusion.

Courts in Britain and France have also questioned whether European countries can enforce the U.N. sanctions and other blacklists without violating local laws, including a defendant's right to see evidence. The United Nations keeps such evidence secret.

The list should be regulated, and those who are put on it should have an appeals process (which they do, though currently they must appeal through their home country), but here's the problem with a European Court of Justice: the UN needs to keep much of the evidence secret, though not all of it, in order to protect sources. Otherwise, the program is dead in the water. Of course, opponents of the list - terrorists - know this.

The Court can't have it both ways, protecting global interests while putting individual countries' laws first, undermining another "governing" body like the UN in the process. Inconsistent enforcement doesn't imply that the ban is wrong. And there need to be cross-lists; the UN doesn't consider Hezbollah to be a terrorist group, so they're not on the UN's list, free to travel and transfer funds unimpeded.

Just because terrorists have learned some tactics to evade the lists is a specious reason to end the program. Abandonment of the blacklists would force bodies like the UN to revert to sanctioning countries instead of the individuals they're trying to reach.

It's a bad time to re-fund terrorists.

Friday, October 31, 2008

That's our soldier

on the front page of the Gazette!

“Did any of your friends get hurt?”

The little girl’s question might have dredged up difficult memories for Sgt. Reuben Kraayveld.

But he handled it gently.

“Some people do get injured sometimes. That’s part of what happens.”

He's probably chafing at the exposure, but it's important for those of us back home to have a true picture of what's happening in Afghanistan.

Rtwt: "Soldier talks of mountains, war and faith."

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Sorry, I couldn't stomach the mass for Obama on tv last night.

Sorry, I couldn't stomach the mass for Obama on tv last night. As my favorite diva, Whitney Houston, likes to say - hell to the no.

Neither did Owen & Co., but we get into it in his open thread for those who did when some jerk calls us hypocrits for hatin' and includes a twisted reference, which I'm sure is derogatory somehow, to my beloved Corey Hart, and doesn't change the fact that now most American voters think Obama's scared he'll lose or he wouldn't have pulled out the big guns.

Names are called.

Other than that, Mrs. Lincoln, how was the play?

I just posted at the BBA about the stupidity of the Janesville City Council, "Janesville celebrates Lincoln's 200th birthday," wherein our wise municipal overseers cut funding to the only meaningful historical site in the county.

Before the blog ink is dry, two dissenters pipe up: "Two council members would give Tallman House back." Maybe you should - I'd like to see it under management that makes something of this beautiful living article of history.

If Lincoln had been clairvoyant, two things are sure: He'd have skipped the theater and he'd have kept going past Janesville.

'I see a lot, a lot, a lot of bad hair'

Isaac Mizrahi on Mizrahi, Mizrahi, Mizrahi, and style.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Been flippin' around today, lookin' at Barack's footprint, his

Been flippin' around today, lookin' at Barack's footprint, his not-racketeering, more Halloween hijinks, DNAism, and Lance makes me a poster while sharing my consternation.

Bonus: Signs of the Apocolypse: " 'Footloose' remake on the fast track."

Bonus bonus: The Buckley for Barack thing? Sounds a lot like when Ronald Reagan's son endorsed... endorsed... who'd he endorse?

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Death and its crippling effects

If this year's election is about anything, it's about how nothing should stand in a person's way of accomplishing great things. A man of color and a woman are key aspects of their party's tickets.

And yet I keep reading derogatory articles and blog posts about dead people voting. Today's contribution is "Voter rolls stuffed with dead and absent registrants."

People, it is time for us to rise above discrimination in a way both sides of the aisle can get behind: Let dead people lead fulfilling lives. Let them vote.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Tell me something. If a high-profile paper like the *Chicago

Tell me something. If a high-profile paper like the Chicago Tribune endorses Obama for president, do you keep reading their coverage of McCain?

Okay, maybe there's a better question: Will Barack Obama be able to use the McCain-Liddy connection in his campaign, or would it just remind everyone about the lack of Bill Ayers criticism he's gotten from the media?

Another day in Iran

Is it too much to call for a complete embargo of Iran because they continue to persecute people, especially Westerners?

Esha Momeni was doing research and visiting family, but was seen as a threat to the regime for her driving.

For a "traffic violation" they sent her to Evin prison, after swinging by her place to collect her computer and research materials. In case, you know, she had a heretical view on driving laws that might come up at trial. Should she get one.

Wiki notes how they celebrated July 27 this year at Evin.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Vote Obama/Biden - they've got chemistry!

'Cause that's what hacks like Chuck Todd want you to believe McCain/Palin fatally lack. And they know it! Losers!

Friday, October 17, 2008

I've been toying with the idea of voting for Barack, or

I've been toying with the idea of voting for Barack, or skipping it altogether. Then there's Glenn's quandary about voting for the Libertarian, and commenter sonicfrog shows up with a more amusing notion:

I was going to write in Paris Hilton... with a pink pen. But now I have a better candidate. Joe The PLumber!

And yes, the pen will be brown.

Local Dems - conjuring signs, conjuring votes?

If they can do this, one wonders what else they can fabricate:

When Kim went to the local Democrat campaign headquarters to get her Obama sign, they told her that they had been giving out so many that they didn't have one to give her, but if she would leave her address they would bring one over when they could. When they found out that we live on Milton Avenue, a busy Janesville thoroughfare, they quickly ran in the back and brought out a sign.

So Kim has had only one contact with the Obama campaign and they lied to her. When they discovered that her location would be very useful to them, they were able to conjure a sign up ex nihilo.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

' "It's fair. It's fair. It's fair." JUST GIVE IT TO ME!'

HI-larity from Althouse:
I can only benefit from a full-on class war. And I want to know how much Obama's money I'm getting too. He's got a lot. And especially how much Pelosi money I'm getting. She's loaded. Kennedy's money too. And Reid, I really want his money. He owes me. I want some of that. Obama keeps saying "It's fair. It's fair. It's fair. It's fair. It's fair."

And we started by talking about Madonna.

Turns out Joe Sixpack - aka Joe the Plumber - lives in Ohio, is

Turns out Joe Sixpack - aka Joe the Plumber - lives in Ohio, is a plumber hoping to start his own small business, and he's the person presidential candidates found out they have to pay attention to.

Thanks, Joe. You put this campaign season back on track.

Nicely played, John: "McCain Gives 'Joe the Plumber' Prominent Billing in Debate."

*The View*, a daytime talk show featuring a panel of women

The View, a daytime talk show featuring a panel of women who discuss current events and topical issues, has found its newest cohost...

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Somebody left the crop in the field too long

But it's public land, right?

It was big. It was sophisticated. It was highly organized.

It was the largest marijuana-growing operation the brass at the Rock County Sheriff’s Office had seen in their decades on the job.

And it apparently was the operation of a criminal organization rooted in Mexico but flowering in the upper Midwest.

Flowering in the upper Midwest. Get it?

Obama = Reparations

This seems to be a subtext for virulant supporters on the left. The man's got a new book out, by the way, with a little help from his friends. And consider the "any means necessary" response from an Obama supporter on Owen's voter fraud post.

That's why race will continue to be recycled as an issue, even though Obama is leading in the polls (and sweating it).

Think they'll own up to it?

And now, your moment of zen:

E pluribus Obama:

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

CNN 'no spin' maven spins for Obama

Wondering why this issue is being recycled, I bothered to read "So what if Obama were a Muslim or an Arab?"

CNN's main page phrases it without the inflamatory bs: "What if Obama were Muslim?" If they were honest - and if they didn't recognize the antagonistic tone - they wouldn't have changed it.

Author Campbell Brown of "Campbell Brown: Election Center" should be kicked to the curb a la Olbermann and Matthews. From her "Cutting through the Bull" segment:

You may find it hard to believe that this remains an issue in this campaign, but it does.

The candidates, both candidates, are still getting questions about Barack Obama's ethnicity and religion. If you are even semi-informed, then by now you already know that of course, Barack Obama is an American.

Of course, Barack Obama is a Christian. Yet just a few days ago, there was a woman at a rally for John McCain incorrectly calling Obama an Arab:

Woman at rally: I don't trust Obama. I have read about him and he's an Arab.

Sen. John McCain: No ma'am, no ma'am. He's a decent family man, citizen that I just happen to have disagreements with on fundamental issues. That's what this campaign is all about. He's not, thank you.

Now, I commend Sen. McCain for correcting that woman, for setting the record straight. But I do have one question -- so what if he was?

So what if Obama was Arab or Muslim? So what if John McCain was Arab or Muslim? Would it matter?

When did that become a disqualifier for higher office in our country? When did Arab and Muslim become dirty words? The equivalent of dishonorable or radical?

It's bad enough that as a journalist covering a presidential election she gets in the tank for Obama, and worse yet that she fails to do what McCain had the grace and sense to do, not dignify the notion with anything but the plain truth.

Did Brown tell you the plain truth? Did she remark on Obama's legacy, his biography, which wind far and wide and can be twisted to construe a xenophobic reaction? Brown starts by saying "of course Obama's American. Of course he's Christian." The 'of course' clearly substitutes for grounded facts.

What Brown bothers to say: There, there, silly flyover people. You've been reassured with demonstrable facts: Obama's American and Christian because I told you; even though I'm lamenting the rise of this specious information, it's so laughable that I won't bother with facts to back it up, I'll just laugh.

And then I'll wag my finger that you silly people even think that a culture/religion that sparks 99% of all violent terrorism worldwide and is well funded and well received in vast regions of the world could have an impact on the viability of a candidate.

Catholics don't vote like Catholics, and evangelicals don't vote like evangelicals, do they? Just because Muslim rulers and their constituencies are genocidically intolerant of other religions - Palestine, Iran, Pakistan, Malaysia, Sudan, et al, I'm looking away from you - doesn't mean an American muslim would behave any differently than a Joe Biden or a George Bush.

In consequence, Brown does nothing to derail any stigma, racism, or the notion we'll all be tarred with if Obama loses that the majority of American voters - millions of them! - are racist Muslim-haters. Except to take these unknown vermin to task for being intolerant of something only a few noisemakers have made an issue of.

Cutting through the bull? Not so much.

Congratulations, Brown. You've constructed a(nother) polarized broadcasting response to O'Reilly's 'No Spin Zone', as if the world needed it. I guess it's good to know which side of the fence you're on: the side that gets Obama elected. 'Cause then you can prove you're not a racist.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Wisconsin honey bear

Pal Steve shares a Wisconsin bee tale - Andy Hemkin of Hemkin Honey Co. put honey in the tummy of this bear.
Beekeepers. We're a special breed.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Everyday economics

On the more newsy side, I gave a primer on the Fed yesterday that might prove helpful or frightening, and I weighed in on Owen's post about the economics of gubment projects.

In case I haven't mentioned the Golden retard lately, Cody's

In case I haven't mentioned the Golden retard lately, Cody's motoring full speed. Which explains which side of the window he's on.

Don't guess I'll bathe him before heading out on the river again today.

Anyone know how to flip that photo? Thanks.

Friday, October 10, 2008

What teachers do on Friday afternoons

"That man's" been campaigning for two years now

Maureen Dowd cynically quips that "John McCain has long been torn between wanting to succeed and serving a higher cause."

Funny, I was thinking the exact same thing about Obama's flip flop on financing his bid for the White House, and the reported payoff: "Obama leads in spending, polls."

Though I'm torn between seeing McCain "long" in that light, and wondering if it matters in terms of character and integrity that you try to win the presidency after a quick sellout.

PS And what's with the whole "he's been campaigning for two years now" meme pushed by Dowd, Jon Stuart and others? Sorry, folks. He's only been on the national radar for over a year. Why do you have to cobble a grand past that wasn't?

Thursday, October 9, 2008

'The dance of living cells'

Is it Dali, or Picasso? Kandinsky, or Jackson Pollock?

None of them. It's three professors, 46 years, an Aequorea victoria's G.F.P., a little gene splicing, glowing pigs and bunnies, a brain with Alzheimer's and 10 million krona.

Anatomy of a modern relationship, in 30 seconds with bunnies

After continued tabloid-like speculation on news sites over the status of one of Hugh Hefner's ongoing relationships - got this at CNN - I finally bit.

Fans of the not-so-soft-core porn show, "The Girls Next Door," may be dissappointed - or elated - that one of the stars will probably be moving out of the mansion, and others may be showing up.

One is leaving because the 82-year-old Hefner won't marry her or have children with her.
Hefner said Madison learned the pair would never have children or get married six months ago, adding: "The fact that she was depressed after that, I didn't know at all. That was a revelation in the last days and weeks..."
Speaks volumes, but only outside Hefner's "modern" world. The man probably thinks it absolves him since he "didn't know at all."

And, after 40 years in the lifecycle of modern Western feminism, playmates work harder for the status that comes with a certain set of genes, hair dye, heavy makeup and surgical augmentation, all the while still wanting a husband and kids - even if they're with a man who won't be around in a few years, and they're raised alongside his other girlfriends in a house devoted to sexual libertinism.

People are clearly fascinated, but are they surprised?

*We promise to reprise the "30 seconds with bunnies" theme later.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Don't know how I got to this page - really! I was reading CNN!

Don't know how I got to this page - really! I was reading CNN! - and I don't follow Dancing With the Stars, but this guy is hilarious.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

1 degree of separation

Ties Paul Newman with Beloit, Wisconsin:

Newman's first wife, Jacqueline “Jackie” Witte, was from Beloit.

Witte and Newman wed in 1949, shortly after Newman graduated from Kenyon College in Gambier, Ohio. They had three children - Susan, Stephanie and Scott. Susan became an actress, producer and writer. Scott also became an actor before his death in 1978 at age 28 due to a drug overdose. Newman established a foundation in Scott's name to produce anti-drug films for children.
Witte was an actress who performed under the direction of Kirk Denmark in Beloit's Court Theatre group in the late 1940s and early 1950s. That group of actors included Kerwin Matthews, who later would be best known for movies such as “The Seventh Voyage of Sinbad.” Also in the group was Muriel (Nelson) Clifton.

Newman, and other actors, would perform in productions in Lake Geneva and at the Belfry Theater in Williams Bay in the early 1950s. Newman would return to Wisconsin to combine two of his loves - acting and auto racing. When making his film “Winning,” in 1969, in which he played an race-car driver, a portion of the film was shot at Road America in Elkhart Lake.

Friday, October 3, 2008

'At one point she literally winked at the nation'

Yeah, that Palin's a winker. Which seems to work for Peggy Noonan.

Me? I think the whole "talk straight to the American people" thing should have been said in a pregame statement or something. It was too blunt for me to let it go and focus solely on what was being said - it gave shadow to ambiguous statements.

There was a message about the message, and that can cause static when they're delivered together.

And I don't agree that Biden looked like he "walked in thinking that she was an idiot and that he only had to patiently wait for this fact to reveal itself." He came across a little flat, but fine.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

'Little noisy bells'

Ha ha ha ha ha!

Shhhhhh!!!! Don't warn them!

As our sainted Grandma J always said, "not worth carrying guts to a bear." Don't mess with tried-and-true aphorisms, m'kay?

Debate prep

Everything you should know before tonight's squaring-off:

"Biden Camp Preps for Debate: 'Gender Isn't the Issue'. " No, Joe, but you'll wish it were - you could probably use the underdog status. And Biden flack David Wade's WaPo comments about Palin are priceless.

"Life isn't fair." Especially not when moderated by someone who should recuse themselves.

"In VP debate, both sides have something to prove" tries to offer balance, if you can overlook the erroneous teleprompter remark.

"No slips, please. You're a step away from power." Get it? No slips? It's a girl thing.

And the Detroit Free Press has the stats: "The lowdown on tonight's VP debate."

Saturday, September 27, 2008

'They were tired of their parenting role'

Chicago Tribune reporter Judith Graham calls it the law of unintended consequences.

I call it the law of government overextension:

Parents are abandoning teenagers at Nebraska hospitals, in a case of a well intentioned law inspiring unintended results.

Over the last two weeks, moms or dads have dropped off seven teens at hospitals in the Cornhusker state, indicating they didn’t want to care for them any more.
Under a newly implemented law, Nebraska is the only state in the nation to allow parents to leave children of any age at hospitals and request they be taken care of, USA Today notes. So-called “safe haven laws” in other states were designed to protect babies and infants from parental abandonment.

Friday, September 26, 2008

McCain v Obama

Catching some of the debate.

We're on the war now, and McCain's got ample opportunity to demonstrate his understanding. Obama only has "I'd try this" and "I've got a bracelet too" along with a week attempt to "gotcha" McCain over meeting with Iran without preconditions - "Kissinger, your own advisor, recently came out with others to say we should" - while backpeddling seriously on the "is"-ness of "preconditions."

Thursday, September 25, 2008

'All we are saying is give Paul a chance'

Sir Paul is playing in Tel Aviv tonight, and certain people aren't very happy about it. Like Syria's sheik Omar Bakri Mohammed, currently hangin' in Lebanon, where it's perfectly legal to say something like this:
"If he values his life, Mr. McCartney must not come to Israel," Bakri told the newspaper. "He will not be safe there."

In Israel's 60th year, it's a big thing that's hard for us Amrikans to grasp.

Yay Mets losing!

We're even!

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Congress bows to the will of the mighty GMC!

In their own particular idiom, of course: "Democrats concede, will end offshore drilling ban."


On CNN today, in the noon hour, re: Palin's pre-UN meeting chats: "It's a lot like speed-dating."

From The Corner, re: the bailouts: "Things aren't so bad that a panicked bunch of politicians can't make it much, much worse."

Friday, September 19, 2008


I don’t want to answer to all these fat-cat lobbyists, including that crippled war hero! Their wives, on the other hand...

What was I saying about dead cats and lobbyists?

Via Glenn.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

It's a beautiful day out, maybe one of that last real warm ones

It's a beautiful day out, maybe one of that last real warm ones here in the upper Midwest. Why aren't you out there?

Well, if you must, I recommend Owen's thread, "Obama’s Teleprompter Goes On the Road."

The comments are worth indulging in. Hilariously spins off topic.

And, sorry about all the bad news. Maybe not that last one, so much.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Supremes at stake?

It may not drive voters in droves, but it's an issue that's sure to be raised. Expect the 'sphere to become heated over this: Supreme Court seats are at stake in the coming election.

Poised to retire: 88-year-old Justice Stevens; 75-year-old Justice Ginsberg; and 72-year-old Justices Scalia and Kennedy, who may make it beyond the coming term but not the next.

Guess which one of them duck hunts with veep Cheney?

Monday, September 15, 2008

Maybe they should call it 'Political Snicker'

CNN's blogs had fun over the weekend:

Apparently you can't swing a dead cat without hitting a lobbyist. Or so anti-lobbyist Obama found in picking Biden.

Sarah Palin, political genius: "Palin tweaks stump speech for different audiences."

Oddly retitled from the main page where it appears as "Cindy McCain Rips 'The View'," a blurb post on Cindy McCain's response to treatment by The View includes a link to the video of McCain's appearance and hilarious comments that consistently call McCain a liar, yet don't bother to explain.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Obama, logs and specks

Seems a certain senator-cum-presidential-candidate isn't practicing what he's preaching:
Obama’s commitment to federally mandated pay equity stretches from the Rockies to Wall Street and beyond. And yet it seems to have eluded his Senate office. Compensation figures for his legislative staff reveal that Obama pays women just 83 cents for every dollar his men make.
Obama's men make $54k against his women's $45k. That's $9k per year less that they can contribute to the tax bank that will provide Hope! and Change! But wait, there's more.
Why this disparity? One reason may be the under-representation of women in Obama’s highest-compensated ranks. Among Obama’s five best-paid advisors, only one was a woman. Among his top 20, seven were women.

Ahhh, you say. See? If the women weren't off having babies and taking breaks from their 24-month career with Obama, they'd be making as much as the men.

Thanks for the info, Owen!

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Feminist backlash 'in a "terribly sexist" fashion'

Betsy Newmark fisks feminist anti-Palinite and New Republic editor Michelle Cottle's article. It's a great study in the pretzel logic of identity politics, along with the message that Dems are only interested in feminism that toes its party line.

A sampling from Cottle:
And, just like that, the strong, proud, fearless, gender-transcendent Hillary morphed into a disrespected, mistreated victim. Grievance feminism came roaring back with a vengeance. Clinton's supporters increasingly went from praising her gender-neutral success to celebrating her triumph over a male-dominated system and decrying the patriarchal forces still aligned against her. Obama wasn't just beating Clinton; he was behaving, as Hillary surrogate Geraldine Ferraro charged, in a "terribly sexist" fashion. Party bigwigs, we were told, were pushing Clinton to bow out in a way that they would never pressure a man.

Hey, gals - especially you old-school feminists I identify with - you can't have it be about gender and not about gender. If Hillary's advancement is good for feminism, so is Sarah Palin's.

Ultimately, feminism among its current practitioners is simply contra-genderism with an agenda. Stick with good ideas, and supporting women with good ideas, or choose to champion women's accomplishments - all women's accomplishments.

Monday, September 8, 2008

Turns out my prediction about Joe Biden's state of anxiety was

Turns out my prediction about Joe Biden's state of anxiety was pretty much on the mark. Let the spin begin:
...after Sen. John McCain chose Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, people laughed and said Biden was going to wipe the floor with Palin in the vice presidential debate. Now, after her incredible convention speech, Biden is saying that he's the underdog because he's not a very good debater.

Sobriety, rants and ratings

Olbermann and Matthews get canned from MSNBC's political coverage because they're boring?

Yeah. Sure. I can see that. Dead last in the ratings and all.

Also, there's the part about the new guy:
The network announced Monday that Olbermann and Chris Matthews have both been booted as co-hosts on political night coverage in favor of David Gregory, whose White House press corps experience may make him better suited to deliver sober and less opinion-driven assessments of the news.

I'm sorry, did you say 'sober' and 'less opinion-driven'? 'Cause I thought you said they were boring.

Friday, September 5, 2008

Headline of the day

"NYT: Obama to dispatch female surrogates."

Leads one to wonder if "dispatch" is used as a euphamism, and he's stalking baby carriers. Or is it a repeat from Star Trek, with Obama taking the Harry Mudd role?

Corporate media controlled by Republicans

Were MSNBC watchers the only ones who saw the two protesters trying to disrupt McCain's speech last night?

Sure, they apologized, saying they didn't have control of the camera people. Maybe they should be replaced with football camera people.

And remember, it's the protesters who're being oppressed, because "the delegates... have two powerful weapons on their side. The first is the corporate media," according to the UW Badger Herald. Of course cops are the other. Badger editors may want to rethink that first one.

Update: Owen noted the fracus before turning in last night (scroll past the "Lance Burri hookup" part), and apparently others did, too.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

'Biden must be wetting himself right now...'

Okay, Condi, you're off the hook. Palin brought the heat and the humanity to the convention last night - the era of the Gorebot (or evil chimperor-behind-the-scenes) veep may be over.

Pictures of Palin's younger daughter holding the new baby while licking her hand and smoothing his hair down will become iconic, historical images of modern politics. The family looked great, the young couple in question of late were radiant (not that it'll put to rest the left's attack on her young sensibilities, but don't expect them to pay kind heed to the hopefully genetic chutzpah of her mom), and through it all they looked like normal, average people from Anywhere, America.

Wished I'd live-blogged both Giuliani's and Palin's speeches, but there are plenty who did. Before I weigh in, let's take a look around.

The Washington Post article is so much fun I'll include the opening graph:

Palin Comes Out Fighting
Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin electrified the Republican convention Wednesday night, itching herself as a champion of government reform, mocking Democratic candidate Barack Obama as an elitist and belittling media criticism of her experience.
From the Chicago Tribune:

Palin fires up faithful, comes out swinging
The "hockey mom" hit the national stage on Wednesday night with a series of body checks.

Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, Sen. John McCain's surprise running mate on the Republican ticket, turned a week's worth of questions about her experience and "reform" image against her Democratic rivals, electrifying the third night of the hurricane-shortened Republican National Convention.

The Trib's John Kass, perhaps stinging from Palin's comments, retorts, "Expect Palin to knock squirrels out of trees..." - oh goody! He extends the metaphor to hunting!

Even the Trib's theater critic chimes in that SNL will have a field day. Lookin' forward to it!

The New York Times covers the speech, naturally, but their online version today is telling: "Palin Assails Critics and Electrifies Party" is set to the left in a single column, no pictures, while Kwame M. Kilpatrick's conviction and resignation as mayor of Detroit is the big story. With a really nice photo of Kilpatrick. I guess Gore-era journos don't consider veeps important.

Locally, the print version of the Gazette gave the convention/Palin's speech the top while dropping it down online under Nation/World and leading with the phrase, "The Republican presidential nomination [McCain's] at last," ironic, considering the Dem circus that finally spun itself out with happy deals for all just two short weeks ago while McCain's been the lone contender for months.

The Beloit Daily News online is only carrying the AP story about tonight's McCain speech, but it's a good bet that Palin's speech'll be prominent on the print version, though I won't see that for a while yet.

Others: Lance tosses bits of Giuliani's and Palin's speeches between networking; Sean hits both tart and bright notes in "The Future of the Republican Party:"

Assume she continues to hold up well under the assault from soulless Leftists. Should Sen. McCain not win the election, and she wants it, Gov. Sarah Palin will be the Republican Presidential nominee for President in 2012.

Tonight’s speech debuted the female Reagan.[...]

Commentor Rob notes that there is a God: “My gosh, Ronald Reagan has returned to us in the form of a beautiful woman in heels from Alaska!” Sean also adds a touch of humor you'd probably never have known about in his post on Code Pink protesters. I suspect fairy dust explains the performance.

At Badger Blogger, Bruce notes the media condescension toward Palin's speech and adds what could be some controversy over "white, upper-middle class Mid-westerners,” and Patrick sheds light on the Dems' ferocity and the cover wars. Can you say "double standard"? Can you say "busted"?

Owen catches Palin "deviating." Fred does as well. Jib is both embarrassed and relieved by the pantsuit resolution, while I add my only fashion comments, over there, until there is nothing left in the campaign worth discussing, or things devolve to that level of absurdity. Which doesn't stop the Boston Herald from embarrassing us all. Not that I'm pooh-poohing appearance. And Cathy gives personal insight as a woman politician that should end the discussion until aforesaid boredom sets in. Someone besides me thanks Palin for finally putting the whole "community organizer" canard to rest. Thanks, Peter!

Lest you otherwise miss her column, Ann Coulter writes: "The Best Man Turned Out To Be A Woman."

My take:
Palin proved she's not a one-trick pony. Let's put it in a way the left can really get into, but just won't find any evidence for: She's a woman with issues.

She doesn't stand for reform, she's lived it - and jokes about it in a way most people can appreciate. The comment about the governor not needing a personal chef, and the kids missing her, was a great over-the-back-fence quip.

Better still was how she got rid of the governor's private jet - she sold it on eBay. (Lots of people will think this is a joke, but that's how our college sells old equipment.)

She's the mother of a special-needs child, not a politician who trotted out a niece or supporter's kid to show their "experience" and commitment - the advocacy she promises from the White House is part of her everyday life, and sitting in as President of the Senate she'll have the clout to carry through.

Coming in as a newbie, she figured out a way to break the chokehold of big oil special interests in Alaska. Why aren't Democrats standing up and cheering? Isn't that what they hate, tarring 'Republican' as synonymous with oil cronyism? Is it because she opened up competition in her state, and helped get pipelines built?

She doesn't talk small government, she's actually cut a big budget and cut taxes, including - Jim Doyle, are you listening? - gas taxes, which she then put back in the pocket of the people of Alaska. Sarah! I'm looking forward to getting some tax relief, and I'm lookin' to you! If anyone can steer McCain in this most-conservative venture, she can.

Like McCain, she's experienced hard times most of us - especially in the cities - can't or won't live with: She had a big family while working at increasingly demanding jobs; she kept her special needs baby, knowing that no matter how much help you get, it is one of the greatest and undersupported challenges a person will face ("A 2002 literature review of elective abortion rates found that 91–93% of pregnancies in the United States with a diagnosis of Down syndrome were terminated.[24]"; further, parents of trisomies are often bombarded by friends and strangers alike about their selfishness in putting such a child through life); she has teenagers, and one of hers got pregnant; the other is shipping out for Iraq in a few weeks. She did all this under great and malicious scrutiny and opposition.

Flyover country can relate. Suburbanites can relate. If McCain's looking for those votes, he can consider them in Palin's tissue-and-gum-stuffed pocket.

Palin demonstrated her gravitas during her speech, and midway through, when she linked energy infrastructure, economics and foreign policy in one simple but sweeping comment on a key issue for this election, I thought, "Biden must be wetting himself right now at the thought of debating her."

Palin got it right when she described herself and hockey moms - who make soccer moms look like slackers - with the old joke: What's the difference between a pit bull and a hockey mom? Lipstick. I expect Biden will be covered in lipstick marks during the debates.

My prediction is that fall-back arguments about the limit of her experience, etc., won't be necessary as long as they stand back and give her the microphone.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

If you find yourself choking on generic network and MSM convention coverage...

I wrote this post to put up Tuesday but compy 386 here wouldn't move quickly enough for me to get the last link I needed, and after trying to stay one step ahead on the work and home fronts, I forgot I had it in the cue until after I wrote this morning's Palin post.

For example, "Hundreds to be charged after RNC protests ," try out some Badger-flavored coverage.

Check out Sean's place, or Lance's work here, or Brandon Henak's posts and WisPolitics and Christian Schneider and possibly some Owen.

Sean's already showing off his convention goody bag, complete with what look like some mystical kind of communication to American voters, including the close-up from the McAroni 'n Palin box.

Re Palin's 'duty to family' meme

I'll let Erik frame the argument in response to an excellent article that Sean posts:

Knowing the insane scrutiny of a presidential campaign and knowing the attention and vitriol that will be thrown at your family if a minor, single, high school drop out [?*] child, living at home, gets pregnant, how could one in good conscious [sic] subject your family in general, and your daughter in particular to the negative media attention that will inevitably occur?

That is a cruel thing to do to your family and your daughter.

Heck, I'll even bracket it with my simple response:

Yeah, Erik. As daughter of the governor of Alaska, nobody would ever have noticed.

And Palin should have stepped down as governor FOR THE GOOD OF HER FAMILY tm.

Sucks that there’s nothing on McCain, doesn’t it?

But that's the simple answer.

Let's get this one out of the way here and now. The left is sounding the trumpets and crying HYPOCRISY!, so let's do it by the numbers.

1. This would not be a question if Palin were not a woman. (Should be end of list, end of story.)

For example: Why not ask John Edwards if he should have packed up his campaign because of his family's issues - both Elizabeth's terminal cancer and his philandering during it.

Why not ask Al Gore about the scrutiny his kids underwent - they did drugs at the time and had run-ins with the law: should he ever be in the limelight?

The list could go on interminably, except, apparently, in the case of second-time presidential candidate (and '96 Dole Veep short-lister) John McCain, whose main skeleton is that after a highly decorated, influential and insanely tortuous career, he left a troubled marriage and began another, which has lasted 28 years. I don't like divorce, but what percent of public servants would be left to run things if that were a litmus?

2. Republican VP candidate Palin should be the one, with her co-candidate and family, to decide whether the level of scrutiny and their personal issues would be liveable if she accepted the nomination.

As another commenter on Sean's thread said,
"That is a cruel thing to do to your family and your daughter."

And if Bristol was saying to Mom, “Go for it, be the VP!” then I guess it would really be cruel to do something your kid was encouraging you to do… eh, Erik?

Service and scrutiny in high political office isn't a novel thing for Bristol to consider. We don't know yet how Bristol felt, but she'd have to be pretty self-centered and immature to not consider what it meant to the rest of the family.

3. Bristol is not newly pregnant, she's five months along.

She knew, as a governor's daughter, that she would receive unkind treatment in the broader press, some flak from "reporters" trying to get quotes, and that the main difference under a presidential campaign would be the number of stories and reporters leaping from bushes, resulting in the charming need for her to have to sit for a Good Housekeeping, People, or similar publication "inside story" interview.

Personally, I think she should campaign to be Paris' new BFF. Paris could use some conservative cred to show she's her own brand of maverick.

4. When, even during the Clinton era, have high-profile politicians' kids ever gotten a break?

Mama Hillary may have come across as the 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. Ol' Yeller who kept the press at bay, but if Chelsea'd turned up pregnant all bets would've been off.

5. How will this affect Palin's viability and performance as a potential VP?

It's not Palin's transgression, for you glass-house finger-pointers, it's her daughter's - and funny that you "it's Bill and Hillary's private business" people should consider it such. Palin's been able to deal with a lot and run a household and a state at the same time.

Ya think Palin was thumbin' her Blackberry when she was in Labor & Delivery back in March? She was probably advising on legislative updates, adding things to her official calendar, responding to the interest of the McCain team, and sending the family's grocery order to Peapod while working on her Lamaze breathing technique.

There. Five's good for me. Although I do reserve the right to add to this list as the "How Could She" hysteria unravels.

PS ?* Drop out? Show me the link - I think Erik's makin' this up as he goes. Not very considerate of what the young girl is going through...

Monday, September 1, 2008

Palin pregnancy psync

It's the psychological version of Hegel/Kant's dialectic (let me see if I can paraphrase it):

Thesis and antithesis reviewed together to determine common truths can find resolution and a new proposition in synthesis.

Althouse plumbs her readers' thoughts on Thing Two and finds that sweet spot - psync, whereby many thinkers consider an issue and arrive at a new determination through synthesis of their creative thinking - where things come into focus:

Ben (The Tiger) said:

Did someone leak this to someone else but get the details wrong, like in a child's game?

That's the best explanation I've heard.

Paglia - pregnant pause?

Hmm... wonder what uber-feminist Camille Paglia, who recently said -
“We may be seeing the first woman president. As a Democrat, I am reeling,” said Camille Paglia, the cultural critic. “That was the best political speech I have ever seen delivered by an American woman politician. Palin is as tough as nails"

- will make of the pregnancy issues, thing one and thing two.

Paglia link also via Glenn.

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Hail Facebook junkies, the new political players

Gone (from the palace) but not forgotten, writes Kamran Haider of Pervez Musharraf.

The fight lives on, on Facebook. Young ex-pats "appreciated his liberal economic policies and efforts against extremism in a country rife with violent militants." Apparently they're young enough to have forgotten how he came into power.

The subtler ones happy to see the back of Musharraf pen titles like " "Burn in hell Musharraf" and "I hate Musharraf"."

Then there are the conspiracy Fbookers, who've uncovered Bush's evil plan:
"The CIA's regime change game finally succeeds. Musharraf's removal is only a milestone in the larger CIA game of taking over Pakistan's premier intelligence service, the ISI," says Zaid Hamid.

Insert evil laugh here.

'Just three days later, new insulin-secreting cells started to show up'

New cells without embryonic cells:

Scientists have long hoped to find a way to reprogram a patient's cells to produce new ones. Research with stem cells, and similar entities called iPS cells that were announced last year, has aimed to achieve this in a two-step process.

The first step results in a primitive and highly versatile cell. This intermediary is then guided to mature into whatever cell type scientists want. That guiding process has proven difficult to do efficiently, especially for creating insulin-producing cells, Gearhart noted.

In contrast, the new method holds the promise of going directly from one mature cell type to another. It's like a scientist becoming a lawyer without having to go back to kindergarten and grow up again, Melton says.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

My new best friend, Joe Biden, says 'It's Official!!!'

I love that they had to say this:

from Joe Biden
to tee bee
date Thu, Aug 28, 2008 at 1:32 AM
subject It's official

Friend -

A few hours ago, Barack Obama was officially nominated as the Democratic candidate for president of the United States.

And just a few moments ago, I accepted our party's nomination for vice president.

It was touch-and-go for a few there, wasn't it, Joe?

Help a brother out.

Help a brother out.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Atlanta has a new star - Nandi, a manta ray saved from shark

Atlanta has a new star - Nandi, a manta ray saved from shark nets in South Africa. Her wing span is nine feet.
"The Georgia Aquarium," one of the best I've seen, "is now just one of four facilities worldwide with a manta ray on display, and the only one in the United States."

Sunday, August 24, 2008

'The Thrill of Victory..."

Reuters posts its idea of "Top 10 moments of the Beijing Olympics."

Whaddya think?

Memorable moments from a part-time watcher include the women's sprinting competitions - the Jamaican contenders were awesome to watch. Women's gymnastics were fun but painful as the judges demonstrated an inability for unbiased judging. The men's gymnastics were simply amazing - the strength, grace, poise and power were mind-boggling. The women's volleyball was fun, but the whole dump-mom's-ashes thing and the follow-up interview made me wonder what those two were doping with.

Overall, the post-performance interviews were incredibly weak and disappointing, but except for Karolyi's outrage at the judging farce, most of the commentary was a total waste.

Friday, August 22, 2008

The Triumphant New China

FYI, this is the China that hosted the Olympics:

Grannies vow to fight on after punishment for Olympic protests

BEIJING (AFP) — Two Beijing grandmothers remained defiant and in good spirits Friday despite being sentenced to one year of reeducation through labour for applying to protest during the Olympics.

In an interview with AFP, neighbours Wu Dianyuan, 79, and Wang Xiuying, 77, said they had not received compensation after their homes were demolished by the city government seven years ago and were simply fighting for their rights.

Obama, Veeps, Prevarication?

I'm excited today because I can't wait to see what Obama's veep pick* adds to the circus.

I'm on the email list that was promised to be sent with tidings of The One today, so I expect Obama to keep his word. However, the Trib article did say:
Obama was to appear Saturday in Springfield, Ill., with his No. 2, and disclose the name to the world through a text message that could be sent at any time before that event.

Will he have the cajones to not pick Hillary? How will his pick stand up well compared with Hillary, and what Clintonian deals will he have to make to retain her support and win back the PUMAs?

But I'm also ambivalent because it's the last day of summer. Back to students on Monday, things around here are already cooling down at night and colors are starting to change, and I've begun sleeping in until all hours just when I need to get that routine back.

*Fox News actually has the short list for both candidates.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Getting serious about getting green; or, 'It takes a government to raise a planet'

Do you think the EPA should be able to:

• Impose Grass Mileage Standards for Home Lawnmowers
• Put Speed Limiters on the Commercial Trucking Fleet
• List Large Single-Family Homes as Carbon-Polluters
• Require Carbon Permits for Retail, Restaurant, Hotel and School Construction

No, really. Think about it.

What a boon! New government jobs for house-to-house lawnmower checks, and additional revenue from lawnmower registration, just like your car, not to mention fines for infractions of standards!

Sure, many trucking companies already have regulators on their fleets that don't allow them to exceed 65mph - they're the ones you're constantly playing I-pass-you, you-pass-me with on the highway. Let's slow 'em all down, even though speed limits vary not just state to state, but area to area! We can let the EPA decide whether 55mph is best, or let 'em have the ability to go up to 65 like the self-regulators. And we can just tack on new regulator checkers at weigh stations, so it's practically a no-brainer! More jobs, more fees, more fines, and an economic boon to the engine regulator industry!

Do you have a large single-family home? Yeah, me neither. Will the EPA think so? Who knows! But won't it be fun to watch them craft a global warming policy for this that deals with our carbon footprint? I'm pretty sure that the EPA will come to the wise decision that any home is a "large" home when it comes to that pesky carbon pollution you've been spewing willy-nilly all these years. More new government jobs! More revenue from fines, fees and registrations!

I mean, really - what does "large" mean when the EPA intends to move on to shops, restaurants, hotels and schools? Mo' money, mo' money, mo' money! Imagine the soaring economy!

Carbon permits for everyone!