Thursday, December 31, 2009

The Aughts Have Been Aughtsome

and have been blessed by friendships made on the internets. Thanks, everyone, and


Happy New Year!







h/t

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Climate Change (!) in Fort Worth


Wednesday of last week: t-shirt weather.

Thursday/Friday of last week (Christmas Eve/Christmas): snow.

Sunday/Monday of this week: t-shirt weather.

Tuesday (yesterday): snow.

Wednesday (today): t-shirt weather.

Thursday (tomorrow) forecast: cold and rain.


Can't something be done about this volatile climate change? All you people: stop exhaling! You are producing too much carbon dioxide.

1

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Iran: the sign we've been looking for

When government muscle joins with protesters - thus becoming former government muscle, a regime can crumble very quickly:
Source: Reuters
TEHRAN, Dec 27 (Reuters) - An Iranian opposition website said police forces refused orders to shoot at pro-reform protesters during clashes on Sunday in central Tehran, where it reported earlier four demonstrators had been killed.

"Police forces are refusing their commanders' orders to shoot at demonstrators in central Tehran ... some of them try to shoot into air when pressured by their commanders," the Jaras website said. (Reporting by Reuters Tehran bureau)
Is this report true? Or, is it a plant which is designed to encourage other government muscle to ignore orders and join with the protesters?

The Iranian protesters (the Greens) are running an outstanding propaganda campaign. Their public relations strategy, and their organizing, is aided by a few key Iranians in America (who, in turn, might or might not be aided by CIA action which was begun by order of George W. Bush, and which at one time funneled money and communications equipment into Iran). If the Green strategists and propagandists did not plant the story, they ought have. If it's really true that government muscle is refusing to shoot protesters, historic shifts of power could happen very rapidly. Revolutions = unpredictable, volatile, boring, boring, bloody, bloody, suffering, suffering, then sudden, dramatic, and historic. Revolutions happen in the way Hemingway's Mike Campbell described going broke (from "The Sun Also Rises"):
Bill Gorton: "How did you go broke?"
Mike Campbell: "Gradually, then suddenly."





Side Note:

President Obama's ongoing calculation that he can negotiate with the Iranian regime has been and still is one of the laughable calculations in all of history. The moment, in June 2009, when the Iranian regime began to wobble, was the moment a wise U.S. President would have spoken out in favor of the protestors and against the regime. Because negotiations have always been virtually hopeless, the best bet to prevent an Iranian nuke in the hands of fanatics is to topple the regime(the second best bet is internal sabotage, the third best bet is a series of attacks by Israel, and there is no fourth best bet). In June of 2009, instead of acting on the best bet and encouraging a topple, President Obama tried to maintain the viability of the regime (so he could negotiate with that viable regime). Pres. Obama's Administration issued statements which verbally propped up and legitimized the Iranian regime. Madness. One of the most incompetent foreign policy actions in all of history.





When I say Pres. Obama is incompetent, I mean: Pres. Obama, of all U.S. Presidents, likely has the least knowledge of world history and of U.S. History. Worse, the history Pres. Obama thinks he knows amounts to false leftist propaganda. Mark Twain:
"It ain't what he don't know, but what he does know that ain't so."
With Pres. Obama, it's both, i.e. what he don't know AND what he does know that ain't so. Partially because he doesn't understand history, Pres. Obama also doesn't understand humanity. Such lack of understanding makes him particularly unqualified to lead the most powerful nation in the world. It makes him actually dangerous.

Speaking of Iran, Charles Krauthammer says:
"This is a moment in history, and he's missing it."
Why is Pres. Obama missing it? It's because he is ignorant of history, and is resultingly ignorant of humanity. Nothing in Pres. Obama's life has prepared him to notice that a revolution is about to succeed in Iran - either now, or in the not too distant future. Pres. Obama can't mentally grasp it. He suffers from a failure of imagination. Pres. Obama thinks revolutions are always clean, bloodless, and led from behind teleprompters. He is incompetence on toast.





Finally: when the Iranian regime is toppled (imo, it's a matter of when, not if), if Pres. Obama and his people then attempt to take credit for the topple, I will vomit for a week.

Friday, December 25, 2009

Thursday, December 24, 2009

White Christmas in Fort Worth!

`

Snowing all day: tiny, light flakes, blown straight sideways by 25 mph gusts, then swirling into every crevice. Huge gusts, then swirling in the vacuum behind the gust, huge gusts, then swirling in the vacuum, over and over and over, all day.


Took the dog walking. Great fun. Finally got to wrap a gator around my neck and face (it's almost always too hot here to do that); finally got to wear ski mittens. The mostly black dog turned mostly white from the caked snow. He would shake it off, then it would return. Hoss and I are tough, Nordic creatures. We are ready for anything - even the cold weather of, for instance, that Nordic state of Oklahoma. Bring it!



`

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Monday, December 21, 2009

Christmas Cheer


Update:.... Declaring blog vacation.
Merry Christmas, and love, from Fort Worth, Texas.






















h/t

Sunday, December 20, 2009

The "Day After" Feeling


Richard Fernandez:
But it may be a feeling that people are going to be increasingly familiar with. People have always believed that ‘they can’t do that; can’t foist this fraud on me; can’t take over 15% of the US economy just like that; can’t give my tax money to Hugo Chavez; can’t borrow money from China in my name and give to China.’ But if you realize one day that the answer to those questions is “Yes we can” — and there’s no point arguing, then you will have discovered the Day After Feeling. Our grandfathers knew it. We thought to be spared.


Dan Collins:
Nothing in American history resembles this legislation for sheer jerry-building so much as the Nebraska-Kansas Act of 1854. The Republic has gone rickety.


Enoch Root:
I have said it before. I will say it again: I have as much affinity with Barney Frank, Chucky Schumer, Pelosi, Reed, and the One! as I do with a Sri Lankan. And on the Right, it is much the same. We are no longer being governed by us. We are being governed by the Others. DC may as well be across the Atlantic – so out-of-touch are they. And their contempt for “we the people” is stunning.


Dan Perrin:
Conservatives hate this bill. Progressives and liberals hate it too. The public is solidly against it.

But it does not matter, apparently. The implications of a country in open revolt against this bill and the elite in the Democratic party giving the public the finger are profound.
[...]
What comes next is very discomforting to think about. But we have now crossed that line from what our country was into something else, and that something else has nothing whatsoever with the country being a Republic. There will be a reckoning for this, and it will not be pleasant — not for anyone.


William Jacobsen:
How amazing is the number of circumstances which caused this perfect storm, without any one of which we wouldn’t be on Obama’s precipice: Massachusetts changes its rules for a second time to allow appointment of a Democrat in Kennedy’s place rather than having to wait for the special election; Al Franken outmaneuvers and out-litigates Norm Coleman to steal the Minnesota race; Rahm Emanuel recruits “blue dog” Democratic wolves in sheep’s clothing and people fall for it; the media covers up the Obama agenda during the campaign, portraying Obama falsely as a moderate; [added] George Allen says “Macaca,” and so on. [Ted Stevens was defeated in the election due to prosecutorial misconduct in Alaska - by the time the legal charges against him were thrown out, Dem. Senator Begich was in office and primed to support Obamacare]


Ladd Ehlinger, Jr:
Dear Texas, despite all of your shortcomings, I am here to inform you:

You are the last best hope of mankind.

The collectivists now have the votes in the Senate to pass the Health Care Enslavement Act. Everything else is procedure. Therefore I must recognize that now, to my utter horror...

I no longer live in a free country.

I will be forced by the power of the State to pay for a stranger's MRI. I will be forced to beg the government for permission to get a heart transplant.

I am a slave. The government now has complete power over everything that constitutes my humanity, for if they control my health and body, they control me.

[...]

I am a realist, which means I am a pessimist, and unfortunately I must say with great pessimism that the country our radio hosts love is no longer the United States of America. It is beyond salvation.

Now listen, I will certainly continue to fight through political channels. I will continue to call my Congressmen and Senators, and go to rallies and rail against the machine. But I know deep down, and I believe everyone else here does too, that with such power over the vast machinery of the United States in the hands of these ruthless collectivists, there will be no turning back the tide even should Republicans and Libertarians and Conservatives sweep the House and Senate in every election in 2010.

Which brings me to the most important thing I know about Texas.

Dear big beautiful Texas with all your gorgeous pageant women and crappy food: you are the only state that joined our Union with a treaty allowing for legal secession.

Here's the "long story short," your favorite phrase, Dear Texas:

You can get out now and no one will stop you.

[...]

Obama doesn't care about preserving the Union. He is the anti-Lincoln. He would be perfectly happy to see all the "Red States" go. They are pesky. They vote against collectivists. Red Staters own guns. They're dangerous. I know I am.

[...]

[Obama will] be happier jettisoning a state or two and let all the whack jobs who love liberty flee there.

Don't get me wrong, Obama's Weather Underground buddies would cheerily kill every last Red Stater if they had to. Look at Jeremiah Wright. You don't think he wants you dead? Please, girlfriend. Please.

But if it can be avoided, they'd prefer you secede. Less money spent on bullets and mass graves and more money for them to live like the Politburo elite in the good old days, with fancy toilet paper.

Dear Texas, Obama-collectivist wants you to leave. You are a guest who has overstayed your welcome in the Union. You just don't know that the liberty party is over yet.

[...]

Update to the Fourth Estate: I seem to have started a controversy (alas, not on my OWN site) over whether this Texas treaty exists or not. This is really an existential question, and none of us are Camus. So Dear people with too much time on their hands arguing about whether the boobs are real or not: STFU, we need a safe haven. It doesn't matter one way or the other. Texas is blonde. If she believes it, we've got a place to go one day. Seriously. STFU



`

Friday, December 18, 2009

Friday Hot: 2010 German Farm Girl Calendar


Authentic 2010 German Farm Girl Calendar. You KNOW you're going to click. You have to: you're only human. No one can resist the premise.


Addendum: I just clicked and looked at this again. Compared to the luscious fecundity of German farm girls, fashion industry twig models look dried up, brittle, angry, and ill.


`

Old notes from a forgotten movie about addiction

Addicts use their addiction to numb and control pain.

If you write about the pain; if you look at it head on; you will eventually learn:
pain can't kill you; addiction can.

Love is a word you need to relearn sober.

Me is a word you need to relearn sober.

No is a word you need to relearn sober.

Relearn yourself sober.

Who are you sober?

What do you look like sober?

Learn it. Show it. Show yourself.

The addict inside you is in a fight to the death ... with a fragile, scared, healthy person who is trying to be heard.

For the healthy person to live, the addict must die.

You have to believe in something bgger than your doubts: a higher power.

Where do your thoughts come from? Why do you choose forgiveness, courage, et al?

What about the things I can't forgive ever?
Best solution: forgive yourself for not being able to forgive yourself.

Words allow us to feel. Tether us to truth. I learned "no". "No" means I exist.

We can't rewrite our histories, but we can learn the truth about them.

An addict is always an addict. The only thing that changes is recovery. It's a new world, and I have to learn it every day.

You've spent life desperate for love, but not knowing where to find it. Now you are learning, one day at a time.




`

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Maria McKee and Esmerelda Villa Lobos

Temporarily, at least, you can watch various movies on YouTube. I've watched Notorious, Wag the Dog, The Big Sleep, and Chariots of Fire.

A while back, I winged through a version of Pulp Fiction in which scenes were set in chronological order. Wanted to determine where Maria McKee's "If Love is a Red Dress" is heard in that film. The question had been stuck in my head. Answer: after the car crash, when Bruce Willis staggers down the street and stumbles into the pawn shop, the song is playing on the pawn shop radio.

On the way to figuring that out, skimmed through a bunch of the movie. I like the section of movie embedded below. The camera loves Esmerelda Villa Lobos. She rules the cab. This clip also has John Travolta, Uma Thurman, Ving Rhames, Bruce Willis, and Bruce Willis' girlfriend - Fabienne (Maria de Madeiros) - musing about pot bellies.

When we see the cab in the alley, at 1:00, is that a computer generated cartoon scene? When Bruce Willis jumps into the dumpster, at 1:26, is that a stunt man jumping in front of a blue screen? I suspect the lighting in the alley is an homage to Dick Tracy cartoons. The movie, after all, is "Pulp Fiction". Dick Tracy ruled the genre. When Esmerelda drives the cab, at 2:40, the scenery out the back window is pure Dick Tracy comic book.




Short bio of the actress who plays Esmerelda:


Angela Jones is an American actress. She was born and raised in Greensburg, Pennsylvania, a town southeast of Pittsburgh. She is a graduate of Point Park College in Pittsburgh.

Quentin Tarantino discovered her in the short film Curdled (1991), directed by Reb Braddock. Tarantino was impressed with her performance and cast her in both Pulp Fiction and a 1996 remake of Curdled.

In Saul Hudson's 2007 biography "Slash", it was mentioned that while recording the soundtrack for the film "Curdled", he had a huge crush on her and the two had a short lived relationship.




`

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Rush Limbaugh suspects Medicare expansion = negotiating ruse to give Lieberman cover to vote for Obamacare

Limbaugh:
Now, I also think that this Medicare expansion was a ruse from the start. In negotiations, if you've ever been in any involving, say, your compensation or representing a company or something, you always, in preparing for negotiations, you put in what are called throwaways, things that you demand be included in the deal that you secretly will throw away or give away in order to get a final deal, and both sides do this. Except our side. We don't do anything but accept the premise and needle with it around the margins. And I think that this Medicare expansion was a throwaway from the get-go. I don't think they were ever serious about this, and I'll tell you why. Simple logic. There's no way in a bill that cuts Medicare $500 billion you can expand it to cover people down to 55 years of age. The two just don't go together. So what they do, they raise the Medicare expansion as an issue at the last minute when Dingy Harry is having problems, and then they kill it a few days later on the desires of Lieberman.

This gives them cover to get Lieberman on their side, and then others say it's now okay to vote for this, since they got rid of the Medicare expansion [and since "moderate" Lieberman supports it].
h/t 1,2

Can one be a "moderate lion"? I don't think so. But, were it possible, Lieberman would be it.




I like Lieberman pretty well, and I'm glad he's a U.S. Senator. However, I don't trust him and I don't think he's a saint: he's a politician, and he will compromise his principles when he needs to. I danged sure don't think Lieberman is a "moderate". Lieberman is a lefty who is clear eyed about the existential threat posed by Islam. This is all well and good, but I'm not trusting Lieberman with the keys to the castle.




Limbaugh's theory of Lieberman and the Medicare Expansion reminds of Lieberman's actions around the time of Bill Clinton's impeachment trial.

Bill Clinton was impeached on two counts of perjury, one count of obstruction of justice, and one count of abuse of office.* Where, in these four counts of impeachment, is the count which impeaches Bill Clinton for sexual activity? Nowhere.

When things were darkest for Bill Clinton, when he was at his moment of maximum peril: Joe Lieberman announced that he would be making a statement of conscience on the Senate floor. At this time, Democrats were in lock-step in support of Clinton. Anticipation built for Lieberman's statement. Lieberman then took the floor and criticized Bill Clinton for engaging in sexual activity outside his marriage. Dems thence rushed to cameras with talking points:

1. A Democrat has criticized the President! The President has been punished enough(by the shame of being criticized by Senator Lieberman)!
2. This impeachment is all about sex.

Lieberman's "statement of conscience" was a coordinated ruse which was designed to help Bill Clinton look chastised, and to help Dems convince the American people that it was about sex. What did Lieberman's conscience think about perjury, obstruction of justice, and abuse of office? To this day, we do not know. Lieberman's conscience only addressed an issue which was not in play.



Last: I remember the campaign in 2000. Lieberman, in support of Al Gore, did a campaign 180 on seemingly every principle he cared about.



I like Lieberman pretty well, but he's a politician, and he will ditch his principles when he has too, and he is an oily operator when he needs to be - as he was during Clinton's impeachment, as he was during the 2000 Gore Campaign, as he easily might be - now - in an Obamacare/Medicare Expansion ruse.



~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~


This Obamacare thing is giving me the maximum heebie-jeebies. I thought it was killed off, last August, by the vehement crowds at town hall meetings. I never thought Dem Congresspersons would jeopardize their re-election chances in order to pass Obamacare. Now, I'm not so sure.




~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~


* Clinton's 4 counts of impeachment:

1. Perjury
Clinton lied to a grand jury.

2. Perjury
Clinton lied in an affidavit in the Paula Jones case.

3. Obstruction of Justice
-Clinton filed a false affidavit
-Clinton verbally attempted to influence the grand jury testimony of Bettie Curry and of Monica Lewinsky
-Clinton attempted to influence the grand jury testimony of Monica Lewinsky via having Vernon Jordan get Monica Lewinsky a job in NYC
-Clinton engaged subordinates in a coordinated scheme to conceal evidence

4. Abuse of Office
-Clinton made false statements to members of his Cabinet, and to aides, for express purpose of having these Cabinet members and aides repeat the false statements in media.
-Clinton falsely asserted executive privilege
-Clinton refused to respond to legal requests for information.




`

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Earth has seen much warmer periods

All that stuff about oceans rising, NYC disappearing, et al?

Hysterical bunk.




More info at theautopsy.wordpress.com.




Also, a wonderful instruction: Lord Monkton interviews a Greenpeace member at Copenhagen. I must say: the woman seems a good-hearted and decent person, and it is admirable that she hangs in the conversation (as opposed to issuing ad hominem and then fleeing the conversation, which is what most American leftists do when confronted with inconvenient facts). She is, however, a good example of the mindless trust of climate alarmists: they blindly trust Greenpeace, et al, and Greenpeace, et al have been misleading them.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Kate Miller-Heidke, Facebook Song

Language warning: this song doesn't hit the f word for a mere single, but rather takes it all the way for an inside the park home run while running through stop signs at every base. So, FEEL FREE to not watch this song.

OTOH, if the f word doesn't ruin your day, this could be mildly entertaining.





h/t @TheBloggess - she is my go-to tweeter for usage of the f word.



I love to use profanity. And I don't use profanity. Much. Or, at least, not too much. And, watching this, I feel a desire to cut loose with some @#$%^&*!!! I usually cut loose on the golf course. There, out with the guys, I take a several hour holiday from language virtue, and spill @#$%%^&&**~!!!! to my heart's desire. I get it out of my system, and then go about normal life. And the problem is, maybe: I haven't been on a golf course in forEVER, and have been generally hanging out with people who are far too virtuous. I'm getting kind of pent up. I really, really ENJOY being unvirtuous. Relish it.

While walking the dog, I've been taking an 8 iron and typically hitting 6 to 10 golf shots during the walk. It's a nice way to walk. I look forward to clipping a few shots off. When walking, I never use profanity if I hit a bad shot - never even think about it, actually. My subconscious rule is: profanity on the golf course. Off an official golf course: nah. Just focus on where the errant shot went, so I can find it. Next errant shot, maybe I'll pretend I'm on a golf course and cut loose. In honor of Facebook.





`

Houston elects fiscally conservative mayor

Oh, and a female mayor. Strike up the band! Another southern city demonstrates true tolerance, respect, and equality.

Oh, and she is lesbian. Start the parade! Another southern city demonstrates true tolerance, respect, and equality.

Democrat Annise Parker, age 53, currently the Controller for the City of Houston, neither made her sexuality an issue nor tried to hide it. She publicly appeared with her partner on the weekend before the election, then made remarks which focused on her fiscal conservatism.

This: first lesbian mayor of a major city, is a notable moment. Yet, at least in the south (Heh: what up NYC, Boston, Chicago, LA?), it is a moment which has been ready to occur at any time. Is anyone surprised - even a little bit? This moment has only been a matter of the right candidate matching up to the right circumstance. Congratulations, Mayor-elect Parker.

The Mayor-elect has a wonderful Houston background. From her "About Annise" page:
Annise’s roots in Houston run deep. She was born and raised here, as were her parents – who met as students at the University of Houston. She grew up in Spring Branch, and attended public schools. Annise’s mother worked as a bookkeeper, and her father worked for the Red Cross. He moved the family to the U. S. Army base in Mannheim, Germany for two years when Annise was 15. There, Annise earned a membership in the National Honor Society and served as president of the Red Cross youth service organization – volunteering as a candy-striper at the base hospital and working in the base library. Annise earned a National Merit scholarship to Rice University in 1974, and worked several jobs to pay for her room and board. She graduated in 1978, beginning a 20-year career in the oil and gas industry – 18 of them at Houston’s Mosbacher Energy.
[...]
Annise served six years as an at-large member of Houston City Council, winning key fights to improve our city government and our quality of life – creating the city’s $20 million Rainy Day Fund, a civic art program, tighter regulations for inner city development and the city’s non-discrimination policy. Annise was recognized as “Council Member of the Year ” by the Houston Police Officers Union and earned the “Distinguished Local Elected Official Award ” from the Texas Recreation and Park Society. [...] Annise and her life partner, Kathy Hubbard, have been together since 1990. They have two children.

Nice story. If Annise Parker is truly a fiscal conservative - and there's every indication she is - the elements are in place for a potential political career beyond the Mayor's office. It wouldn't surprise me to see, someday, Ms. Parker in elected office in Washington. She looks clear eyed, and possibly talented.





A note, to any GLTB people who excoriate the backward south: if you have eyes, open them. Houston cares that Annise Parker is fiscally conservative, knows and loves Houston, and has a record of accomplishment which indicates skill.

I expect tens of thousands of Parker voters are evangelicals who believe homosexuality is a sin, yet who nevertheless voted for Ms. Parker. Billy Graham spoke the balanced evangelical perspective:
"I believe homosexuality is a sin. But, I don't believe it any worse of a sin than the many sins I commit every day."




This story has been written in media as a triumph of gay and lesbian get out the vote (GOTV) efforts which overcame an organized drive by "religious conservatives" to defeat a lesbian candidate. Don't make me laugh. In Houston, TX, if religious conservatives don't want you to win, you don't win.

The true story - and I know it without even researching it: fringe-y evangelical conservatives organized against the lesbian; mainstream evangelical conservatives elected her to office. That is the only way to win in Houston, and THAT is the story. GLTB GOTV might have been effective, and might have pushed Ms. Parker the last bit over the top. However, GOTV was not even close to the major factor in her election. Here's the major factor: Annise Parker is fiscally conservative, knows and loves Houston, has a record of accomplishment which indicates skill - and, as a result, evangelical conservatives voted her into office.





There are unreported aspects to the attempt by "religious conservatives" to defeat the lesbian.

First, to set the scene, these were the candidates for Mayor of Houston:


Gene Locke and Annise Parker.

Yep, Houston is so filled with intolerant haters that the Mayoral runoff came down to a black man and a lesbian.

Given the candidates, and given media reporting, either

1) Southern white religious conservatives were heavily supporting a black man - which would shock the media, and would be a headline for media, IF media could get through their cognitive dissonance enough to process the implications of their current storyline that religious conservatives were opposing Ms. Parker

or

2) "religious conservatives" who organized to defeat the lesbian amounted to some (small?) number of black churches which: are largely evangelical and opposed to homosexuality, are often politically active, are likely to support a black candidate (see current national support for Pres. Obama).

That some black churches are politically active, and are eager to support Mr. Locke, would be a part of the story which speaks to motivation: maybe such churches were more motivated to support Mr. Locke than they were to oppose Ms. Parker; and maybe those churches went overboard in their tactics. It would not be the 1st time - or even the 20,000th time - in which some Democrats convinced themselves that a preferred end justifies a questionable means.

The media are reporting sloppily. Who are "religious conservatives"? I suspect a fringe of mostly black churches has been exaggerated out of proportion by a sloppy media, with a media-happy result that all Christians and all conservatives in Houston have been indicted by the sloppy reportage. Media will say "Gosh, we didn't intend to indict everyone". However, isn't it funny that most media sloppiness coincidentally indicts conservatives and/or Christians? Yes, isn't that funny? Ha ha.





One other open your eyes item which caught my eye in the About Annise page: "the city’s $20 million Rainy Day Fund". What fiscal truth does Houston know, yet NYC, Boston, Chicago, and LA do not? This is not a tricky question.

In addition to Houston's fiscal responsibility, note the State of Texas both
1) runs our budget in the black, and
2) has a $9 Billion Rainy Day Fund.

What is it that Texas, Mississippi, Utah, and Alaska know, and that New York, New Jersey, Massachusetts, Illinois, and California do not? This is not a tricky question.

2009 State Budget Deficits




Saturday, December 12, 2009

A Merry Christmas Post

Either 2004 or 2005: Lisa, with Mom and Dad, in the kitchen in Denham Springs at Weeping Willow.


I miss Lisa. Christmas is a good time to hug your loved ones. Or, you know: gaily mess with their wheelchair. Whichever. They are sure to love it.

These days, there's a lot less of Mom and Dad to hug. Both have lost significant weight since this photo. Dad is very proud of it - ask him about losing weight and he will love you forever. Mom is 5'7", and for 3 years has been just under 120 pounds. It does seem a healthy 120 pounds. She and Dad exercise three times a week.

Seeing Weeping Willow reminds of the house Bruce and Lisa moved into on Chateau Jon. From last year, photos of Chateau Jon in a rare, rare south Louisiana snowfall:


When they had been in this house about a month, and were still somewhat at loose ends - still trying to find what boxes held all their stuff: Mom and Dad and I visited for Christmas. On Christmas Eve, Bruce and Lisa's sewage pipe twice overflowed into their Master Bathroom. As you can imagine: relatives in the house, can't find your stuff, two separate sewage overflows: wasn't stressful at all. Christmas isn't stressful, at all! It's all the hugging, I think.

That year, Lisa had me searching for cloth Christmas napkins for what seemed like days. Bruce finally stumbled across them sitting in plain sight in a garage: they had been one of the first boxes moved - and in fact moved by me - two months previously.





Snowfall in the far south reminds of this, from last Friday: in Houston, five year old Hailey sees snow for, possibly, the second time in her life. She is not displeased.

Sam McGuffie hurdles defender


Football Player Hurdles Defender

"Leftism is ... an elaborate system for hiding shame behind a cheap mask of virtue"

Andrew Klavan:
And that’s exactly the sort of religion leftism is: an elaborate system for hiding shame behind a cheap mask of virtue. That’s why they demonize any opposition. To them, we’re not just disagreeing with them, we’re threatening to tear off the mask of their virtue and reveal them to themselves. Which, without God or sufficient whiskey, would be unbearable.

Klavan is saying a similar thing to what I have often said (when explaining why the leftist feels personally attacked/threatened if you disagree with them), only he's saying it better. Klavan is, therefore and of course: a genius! He's such a genius that I'm excerpting the extended quote:
Front Page Magazine: You mentioned that leftists are “secretly ashamed and guilt-ridden and self-hating.” Can you expand a bit on this? What is it, in the end, that is at the core of the leftist mindset and belief system?

Klavan: Shame and guilt and self-hatred are universal. Whether you chalk it up to original sin or to Oedipus or call it Jewish guilt or Catholic guilt or white guilt or black guilt, every single one of us knows he is not the person he was made to be. There are honest ways to confront that. You can kneel before God and pray for forgiveness and live in the joy of his love. Or you can drink heavily and make sardonic remarks until you destroy everyone you care about and then keel over dead – that’s honest too. But what a lot of people do is try to escape their sense of shame dishonestly by constructing elaborate moral frameworks that allow them to parade their virtue and their lavish repentance without any real inconvenience to themselves while simultaneously indulging in self-righteousness by condemning others for their impenitent evil. That’s the bad version of religion – the sort of religion Jesus came to dismantle. And that’s exactly the sort of religion leftism is: an elaborate system for hiding shame behind a cheap mask of virtue. That’s why they demonize any opposition. To them, we’re not just disagreeing with them, we’re threatening to tear off the mask of their virtue and reveal them to themselves. Which, without God or sufficient whiskey, would be unbearable.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Friday Hot: LSU student Cindy LeBlanc

As long as South Louisiana girls take quick study breaks to zip out to deer stands and kill 8 point bucks: America will be okay. God bless Cajun country. The story of Cindy's trophy.

South Louisiana is like it's own country with it's own separate and individual style of culture and it's own cussed independent streak. There are no mountains in Louisiana, but there are deer in the woods, fish in the bayous, and trucks and boats gassed up and ready to go.

You look at Cindy (and her beautiful ring), and you can make some educated guesses: she's going to have kids; her kids are not going to be wimps; her kids are actually going to take showers, and are never going to be arrested while protesting and destroying property outside a WTO meeting. Do you think Cindy LeBlanc is worried that a Navy Seal is (probably falsely) alleged to have punched a terrorist during a capture/transport? Do you think Cindy LeBlanc believes American apologies to the world constitute good foreign policy strategy? Do you think Cindy LeBlanc buys into Copenhagen/AGW/Cap&Trade? I don't think so: I think Cindy LeBlanc knows manure when she smells it.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Texas Rangers Manager Ron Washington comments, 12/9/09

Ron Washington:
Kinsler is young and it's [Kinsler's uppercut swing + swinging for the fences] being addressed on a daily basis, but some wild horses, you have to let be wild horses. His style is his style. The change has to be made by Kinsler. In time, he will recognize that and will change. But right now, he's still something of a wild stallion.
So, basically, at this point, Kinsler is uncoachable. This jibes with my amateur psychology speculation that it's Kinsler's hardheadedness which got him to the major leagues when a thousand guys like him never made it, yet that very same hardheadedness - which is in some ways Kinsler's greatest strength - is currently preventing Kinsler from reaching his potential. This is a suck eggs situation for the team, and also for me: I can't stand watching Kinsler hit the same way he hit last season.


More of my amateur psychology: Ron Washington - who was a scrappy hitter - doesn't know how to manage immensely powerful hitters like Nelson Cruz. Ron Washington is like a father who mercilessly rides and criticizes one of his sons; who never gives that son any credit.

Ron Washington :
It's important that we sign a right-handed bat, even if we don't get it done in the winter meetings. We have to be very creative in how we do that because of the current financial state. Cruz did provide some protection, but in August and September the league made some adjustments and we don't know if that's the real Nelson Cruz or not. I still would like to keep as much pressure off him as possible in the middle, somebody with a more veteran track record.
Translation: Nelson Cruz was good last year, but I, Ron Washington, think it was a fluke. I don't think Cruz is actually as good as he looked last season. Also, he's a rock-head who can't make adjustments at the plate.

Other Washington observations:
- Enthusiastic about Chris Davis bouncing back
- Still cautious about risk of re-injury to Teagarden's back. Team needs catching depth for this reason.
- We're going to stretch C.J. Wilson out (as a starter), then see what our needs are at the end of Spring Training.
- McCarthy has definite major league ability; can win ballgames at this level.

Washington, on veteran players:
The key is to be a professional. And who knows more about being a professional than veterans? There is a way you act, a way you dress, a way you show respect, a way you go about your routine. I think leadership is essential to winning. How can youth take on leadership when they haven't been there to lead?
Translation: I hate young players! Well, not really, but sort of. Alternate translation: Michael Young is too square, in some respects, for young players to follow his lead. We need other veterans.

My take: needing veterans is understandable - especially if you've the talent to be in a pennant race, you need veteran presence to calm and inspire and discipline your younger players. Still, it's a bit of a shame, as every veteran on a one year contract is on the 40 man at cost of a young and promising player who is controllable for 6 years, and who is dirt cheap for 3 of those years.

Wednesday, December 09, 2009

Clumber Spaniel

Nice:



I've never seen this breed before, but I like it: handsome and noble. Spaniels don't make my heart go pitter pat, but maybe the Clumber Spaniel does. They have superior noses. They are bred to be low to the ground, to go through brush and not over it, so as to flush pheasant and such into the air. Their skin gives with the branches and obstacles they encounter: perfect for crashing into brush and such w/o injury. Their mouths are soft, so as not to damage the game (does lead to drooling). The Working Clumber Spaniel Society:
"The most hansomest animal this kingdom ever produced"
-The Modern Clumber 1865.

During 2003 there were 134 Clumber Spaniels registered in Britain. Compare this with 12,000 Springer Spaniels and 13,000 Cocker Spaniels registered annually and you will realise that this is not a common breed. The Clumber Spaniel has however, been part of the British sporting scene for over 200 years. Once the favourite of dukes and kings they take their name from Clumber Park in Nottinghamshire. Although not the speediest of spaniels they were highly prized as game finders.

[...] The coat is white with lemon or orange head markings, abundant and straight, with feathering around the legs. They have a steady reliable character, are stoical, great-hearted and highly intelligent and are known for being silent workers with excellent noses.
[...]
The Working Clumber Spaniel Society formed in 1984 is the force behind the breed's revival as a genuine gundog bred for the field. It exists to represent those whose first interest in Clumber spaniels is that of working them.
[...]
Every owner of a working Clumber soon discovers that the chuckles of his shooting friends turn to admiration when "that funny white dog" finds game missed by other dogs.



h/t - for introducing me both to Clumber Spaniels and to the linked blogpost below, to Bird Dog.



Seems to fit here:
a British-y post,
by an American,
Enough is as good as a feast.

Tuesday, December 08, 2009

Emily of Texas



Somewhere
outside Alpine,
the Border Patrol is stepping up efforts
in noisy fashion.

Emily of Texas
makes an artistic comment.






Since we mentioned Texas, see Alpine resident Hugh MacLeod's "West Texas".

The Bristlecone Pines of Great Basin National Park

Great Basin National Park, in Baker, NV, is halfway between Las Vegas and Salt Lake City - and is some distance west of the highway between the cities. Great Basin National Park has one of the most undiluted views of the nighttime sky of any venue in America.


Great Basin National Park has Bristlecone Pines which are thousands of years old. Bristlecone Pines are the oldest living trees in the world, and are only found in America.

Wow. WOW. I want to visit this park. I want to gaze at a gazillion stars and hug a three thousand year old tree.

"One bristlecone pine near Wheeler Peak was dated to be more than 4,900 years old. This tree, known as "Prometheus", was cut down and sectioned for scientific research in 1964 before Great Basin National Park was established.

Bristlecone pines in Great Basin National Park grow in isolated groves just below treeline. Conditions are harsh, with cold temperatures, a short growing season, and high winds. Bristlecone pines in these high-elevation environments grow very slowly, and in some years don't even add a ring of growth. This slow growth makes their wood very dense and resistant to insects, fungi, rot, and erosion. Vegetation is very sparse, limiting the role of fire. Bristlecone pine seeds are occassionally cached by birds at lower elevations. Bristlecone pines grow more rapidly in more "favorable" environments at lower elevations. They do not achieve their legendary age or fascinating twisted shapes."

Monday, December 07, 2009

Miss Barbados 2009 - Leah Marville


It's cold, gray, raining, with chilling wind.

Time for Miss World Barbados 2009!

Have put up photo or video of beautiful women on four consecutive days:

1. Tammy Roy,
2. Lina Romay,
2A. Carly Fiorina,
3. St. Vincent's Portland,
3A. Sarah Palin, &
4. Leah Marville.

Winter weather blogging! Like steaming hot soup on a bitter cold day, like a snow capped Colorado peak in July: it hits the spot.



Had Grantland Rice had Bing.com access to Leah Marville, the "Four Horsemen of Notre Dame" never would have ridden. The game story would have read:
Surrounded by a cold gray November sky, watching hapless Michigan be gashed by Notre Dame, my computer screen and my thoughts turn to the fetching Miss Barbados: Leah Marville.



If AGW is real, then CRU scientists ought be shot

finemrespice.com
How even more deliciously ironic would it be if, in their lustful, Dr. Hendronsian self-aggrandizing rush to be the first to save the planet from the Neomalthusian horrors of free market economies, Phil Jones and Keith Briffa have stunted the world into inaction and indecision by disastrously overplaying their hand and, in the unlikely event that the Earth’s climate is in fact characterized by unchecked positive feedback systems, thus doomed the human race.
h/t


Can't remember who said this next, but it fits here:
If AGW is a fraud, CRU scientists ought be embarrassed.
If AGW is real, CRU scientists ought be shot.


The climate alarmists who are pooh poohing Climategate, who are defending CRU scientists, are caught inside an illogical knee jerk reaction. If AGW is real, then climate alarmists - above and beyond everyone else - ought be most eager to investigate CRU's deceptions; ought be most eager to work their and our way to true numbers which will surely validate the climate emergency they believe we are living in. Are climate alarmists eager to investigate and discover true numbers, i.e. numbers which will ostensibly validate the Earth's climate emergency and thus spur the peoples of the Earth to action?

They are not eager. Why?


My first guess: their virtuous self image is too closely tied to their advocacy of the CRU false numbers. They remain whacked upside the head by cognitive dissonance, and have not yet regained their logical faculties.

I have written, sloppily, of the left tying their own virtue and self esteem to their political beliefs.

Briefly: for the right, virtue is about, for instance, the Golden Rule. Virtue is about morality, ethics, and having the faith to walk the disciplined walk. Virtue is about action: virtuous action.

For the left, the Golden Rule is too judgmental, as are morality and ethics. The left desires neither faith nor discipline. But, buuuuut, the left desires virtue. Leftists want to be virtuous people. And they achieve it, in their way of thinking, by advocating virtuous beliefs. See?

A leftist thinks like this: I am pro gay marriage, and therefore I am virtuous. To the left person, being pro gay marriage is not merely having an opinion. It is bigger. It is a matter of virtue vs lack of virtue. Similarly, supporting CRU's numbers was not an opinion that CRU's numbers were accurate. It was bigger. I was a matter of virtue vs. lack of virtue.

Therefore, if advocating CRU's numbers amounted to virtuous action, and if CRU's numbers were fraudulent: where does that now leave a climate alarmist who spent a decade being virtuous because of his or her advocacy for CRU's numbers? THAT is the cognitive dissonance climate alarmists are now saddled with.

Eventually, climate alarmists will rationalize their way out of the problem via finding a fall person(s) at CRU, and that fall person will be excoriated in nasty, nasty fashion. But the lefties are not there yet. They are still in the cognitive dissonance stage of: Wha? What is happening? CRU numbers exist, and therefore I am virtuous. There is no other possibility. I am virtuous. CRU numbers are accurate. There is no other possibility. I feel woozy.

Texas Rangers don't need trades

The Rangers, most likely, are about to swing one or more trades. Fine. A good trade is always a good trade.

However, the Rangers don't need trades. The franchise has competitive and affordable personnel in place - w/this caveat: b/c Saltalamacchia is a risk for arm trouble, the Rangers need to sign Pudge Rodriguez. If they sign Pudge, the Rangers can win the division with the team they already have in place.


Hamilton```Borbon````Cruz
Murphy``.``Boggs

Young```Elvis```Kinsler```Davis
Inglett ``Arias

Pudge
Teagarden

That's a strong enough team (as I expect some bounceback years and some improving pitch selectivity) to win the division.


Note: I like Esteban German and his high OBP potential (.400 in 2009 AAA, and currently .390 in winter ball). However, German is in line to get $1M in arbitration. The Rangers do not want to pay him $1M (sigh), and are likely to put him on waivers instead. Wishful thinking: maybe, after they release him, they can resign him for $600K.



Pitching:

Millwood
Feldman
McCarthy
Hunter
Holland
Feliz
Harrison


Francisco
C.J. Wilson
O'Day
Nippert
Mathis
Eyre
Strop
Madrigal
Moscoso



Guitterez, Kiker, and Beavan are coming - any of them might be ready in July. And after them, beginning in 2011, the deluge: Hurley, Scheppers, lefties galore, and plenty more.

Sunday, December 06, 2009

Can't get enough Sarah Palin

Update: John at Powerline comments on Palin's visit tomorrow, and on Mall of America's detailed instructions about what to do and what not to do beforehand - There's Something About Sarah:
There is nothing quite like the Palin phenomenon. Is there anyone else in public life who, for a book signing, could draw a crowd that would have to be warned that they can't camp out overnight, but can only start standing in line--in December in Minnesota!--seven hours before the event begins?
[...]
In the comments on the Strib's story, meanwhile, liberal and conservative readers are duking it out. No one brings out the hate in liberals like Sarah. An interesting question: has there ever been anyone on the left who has prompted a similarly crazed reaction from conservatives? The closest I can think of--not very close, actually--is Ted Kennedy. It is instructive to compare the reasons why many conservatives despise Kennedy with the reasons why most liberals seem to lose their wits at the mention of Governor Palin.







Don Surber covers Palin's quips during her appearance at the Gridiron Dinner. She rocked.










An American original - who created her public self from nothing, Palin is out of the same tradition as Andrew Jackson and Teddy Roosevelt.


When a person can do that - can rise through sheer shrewdness and chutzpah: that person is interesting and scary. That person frightens people who prefer a status quo in which no one rises except through a traditional path - i.e. a more understandable path, and thus a path which is more comforting to observers.



What might she say? Or do? She's a wild card, and thus unpredictable and scary (even to her supporters). Sarah Palin doesn't throw soothing, modulated tones and bones to the left. Rather, she is more likely to punch the left squarely between the eyes. This is why I love her. Other Repubs don't throw punches as consistently or as overtly as Sarah Palin does. This is scary, to both left and right.






Everyone would be more comfortable with a more predictable Repub. politician - with a soothingly predictable Romney or Pawlenty, for instance.


But, would everyone be better off? Is comfortable what we really need?

Dare you to watch this without smiling

from Providence St. Vincent Medical Center, in Portland, Oregon

Do Hospital personnel become weary of routine? A slight change in glove color has a dramatic effect.





The dancers are fab. Some personnel are infrequent dancers, yet willing to dance as part of the team: at 1:02, woman at back of the line on right; at 2:48, woman on right. Way to go, ladies.

3:12 (Indian?) woman on left, in brown blouse. She, maybe, has not done a lot of western style dancing, but by golly she wants to! She is SO READY to dance. Love her.

3:18 woman on left, in blue: dancing is serious business! Love her, also. Whatever she does in life, she gives it her best and most focused effort. Inspiring.

This video is FILLED with sexy and alluring women - they are out of their routine, they are being genuine and human, and it is attractive. However, for fun, I unleash manly instinct and point to a few specifics. I enjoy making instant guesses about people.

1:28 woman who is 4th in line - you can barely see her at 1:38. Manly instinct: I want to see more of her.

2:46 You may or may not find ample bodies attractive. Yet, stop the video and take a second look at this dancer. You don't even need instinct to see that this is a sexy woman. You only need to be open minded enough to notice her. Lots of men like ample bodies and would love her. She knows it, too. Her confidence with her body is part of her allure.

2:50 on right, for the barest moment, swinging an imaginary rope over her head. You actually have to stop the video to really see her. Manly instinct: ahhh, yes. We only have to notice her. A lifetime of studying women tells me this is a sexy girl. Actually, the woman dancing with her - for the right age and right type of man - is also a sexy girl. The companion dancer is obviously a good sport and a fun person.

There are sexy persons all over this video, if we wish to see them.

Saturday, December 05, 2009

Carly Fiorina on Healthcare, Breast Cancer, and Death Panels

Climate Science: "Even the most rigorous statistical methodology will generate estimates with large margins of error."

Stephen F. Hayward, writing in The Weekly Standard:
It has long been thought that over the last thousand years the earth experienced two significant natural climate cycles: the "medieval warm period" (MWP) centered around the year 1000 and the "little ice age" (LIA) from about 1500 to 1850 or so. The first report of the IPCC in 1992 displayed a stylized thousand-year temperature record showing that the MWP was warmer than current global temperatures, but this was mostly conjecture. Yet it was a huge problem for the climate campaigners: If the medieval warm period was as warm as today, as some scientists believe, it would mean that today's temperatures are arguably within the range of normal climate variability, and that we could not yet confirm greenhouse gas emissions as the sole cause of recent increases or rely on computer climate models for predictions of future climate apocalypse. There had long been rumors that leading figures in the climate community believed they needed to make the medieval warm period go away, but until the CRU leak there was no evidence besides hearsay that scientists might be cooking the books.

The evidence for the medieval warm period and the little ice age is mostly anecdotal, since there were no thermometers in the year 1000. Is there a way we could determine what the temperature was a thousand years ago? Calculating the average temperature for the entire planet is no simple matter, even today. This is where the paleoclimatologists at the CRU enter the picture. The CRU circle set out to "reconstruct" past temperature history through the use of "proxies," such as variations in tree rings, samples of centuries-old ice drilled out of glaciers and polar ice caps, lake sediment samples, and corals from the ocean. Using a variety of ingenious techniques, it is possible for each of these proxies to yield a temperature estimate at a particular location. Tree rings are thought to be the best proxy, because we can count backwards and establish the exact year each ring formed, and by its width make temperature estimates. But tree ring data are very limited. There are only a few kinds of trees that live a thousand years or more, mostly bristlecone pines in the western United States and a few species in Siberia. The thousands of data points that emerge from these painstaking efforts are not self-explanatory. They need to be adjusted and calibrated for latitude, altitude, and a number of other factors (such as volcanic activity and rainfall during the period). Even the most rigorous statistical methodology will generate estimates with large margins of error. One of the striking features of the CRU emails is how much time the CRU circle spent discussing with each other the myriad problems with processing these data and how to display them to a wider world. On the one hand, this is typical of what one might expect of an evolving scientific enterprise. On the other hand, these are the selfsame scientists who have insisted most vehemently that there is a settled consensus adhered to by all researchers of repute and that there is nothing left to debate.

Friday Hot on Saturday: Lina Romay

Merry Christmas, from the entire staff at The End Zone!


1943 performance with Xaviar Cugat, "Bombshell From Brooklyn". Miss Romay begins at 1:50.





I don't understand why 1960s flower children were so confident they had invented good sex. Clearly, they had never seen Lina Romay.







An aside ... look at the pose in the striped blouse. I suspect, in the 1940s and 1950s, every professional photographer lined up every actress in that exact pose, and in that exact striped blouse (the stripes to delineate shape?). I feel as if I have seen photos of every 1940s and 50s Hollywood actress in that pose: their arms always plastered flat against the wall, their Maidenformed(?) chests always thrust forward like a statue on a ship's prow (the stripes as nautical hint?), the camera always below - shooting iconically upwards. This pose personifies America in the 1940s and 1950s: healthy, powerful, active, unafraid, and not much interested in nuance. Kudos, 1950s America.


h/t 1, 2, 3

Friday, December 04, 2009

Doesn't it perturb you

because it does me,
when you are at the park
and the dog is sniffing around
and you launch a couple of Titleists (w/taped up 8 iron)
into a field
which turns out to have too-high grass?

You search and search for the golf balls
and find them (you think)
and launch them again
and follow them
and launch them again
and follow them
and, whats this?

"Dunlap"?! Augh! How could I be so foolish?

You redirect your launches back towards where you figure the Titleist must be,
and search through the area.
Much searching.
Nothing.
Time to give it up - past time to give it up.

So, you launch golf balls around the park
until dark
as the dog sniffs on.
And he's eating something in the distance.
It's kind of disturbing that you don't know what he is eating,
b/c the other day he kind of choked up whitish clearish liquid
which choking didn't look unlike frothing at the mouth.
And rabies is never fun
in a dog which sleeps near your bed.
And you do allow him to dig and chase
in field and wood
after varmints.
And who knows what diseases they have? (shudder)

Are you a gigantic fool?
Maybe.
But, either way, that dog is getting shampooed tonight.

Wait, where were we?
Oh yes:
Now searching for the last 8 iron launches of the twilight.

It includes a duck hook which was hit out of a muddy lie and went way off-line and short to the left - near a creek which you intended to hit over but ended up hitting short of.
You see your duck hook in the darkening gloam,
except it's your lost Titleist!

Then you find your other Titleist, AND the Dunlap,
and probably 3 minutes later you couldn't have found a golf ball unless you stepped on it in the darkness.
Such fun.
Anyone can understand it.
Where IS that dog?

Palin gives appropriate radio interview; her enemies bring the hysteria

Update:
Assistant Village Idiot:
Palin’s critics don’t care what she said. They care what they can make it sound like.


There may be a time, in future, when I do not defend Sarah Palin. However, I'm defending her re this radio interview. A Washington, D.C. automaton would have avoided directly responding to the question. Sarah Palin is fresh air precisely b/c she is not that automaton; precisely b/c she directly responded to the question. Her response, while politically naive, was nevertheless logical and appropriate.

I wonder: was her response really a political mistake? She didn't intend it to be a stealth attack on Pres. Obama. However, if the accusations against her continue long-term, Palin will be protected by the "boy who cried wolf" dynamic of past smears against her. Meanwhile, the hysteria will remind voters that Pres. Obama still hasn't proven he is legally qualified to hold office.

Disclaimer: I strongly suspect Pres. Obama was born in Hawaii. Birther arguments are unconvincing. Yet, it's a scandal that I do not know the certain and proven facts about his birth. As in Climategate: why must I rely on opinion instead of proof?



If you listen to the interview, you realize Palin has little interest in this issue. She knows little of the minutia of the issue - just as everyone who has little interest in the issue knows little of the minutia. If she had interest, she would have educated herself about the issue.



Her in-context response was about the McCain Campaign's failure to adequately focus on issues in Sen. Obama's background. Here is the conversation preceding, then the relevant quotes:


6:45
Humphries
"You really seem unaffected by this tremendous media scrutiny you've been under. Why have you been so unaffected? Or, are you just good at playing it cool?"

Palin
discusses "political shots my family has taken", and how Trig's circumstances ("He's given us his first smile!") and Track's military deployment have helped her keep perspective: "I can blow off a bunch of the bullcrap that goes on in the political arena, b/c of these things that God has allowed me to go through that, again, keep it in perspective."

7:38
Humphries
"You have a daily Thanksgiving perspective, almost?"

Palin
"Yeah, that's right on."

7:45
Humphries
"One if the questions Jason asks is 'Would you make the birth certificate an issue if you ran?'"

Palin
"I think the PUBLIC, rightfully, is still making it an issue."


Note: "rightfully" equates to Obama's background ought be vetted, yet has not been vetted. "rightfully" was sloppy construction by Palin. When "birth certificate" was raised, Palin ought have heard alarm bells in her head, and she ought have been carefully precise in her answer.


Palin
"I don’t have a problem with that."


Note: This equates to I am not into this issue, but it's not an unfair question.

It's absolutely fair for the public to demand proof of Pres. Obama's legal qualification for the office. If the constitutional requirement is unfair, then Congress ought change or amend the constitutional requirement.


Palin
"I don’t know if I would have to bother to make it an issue, because I think that members of the electorate still want answers."


Note: This is sloppy language on Palin's part, and ought have been cleaner. Here's what she was saying in her head, yet was failing to precisely communicate: If I investigated this, and if there were something there: I don't know if I would then have to call attention to it, due to the keen public interest which already exists.


Humphries
“Do you think it’s a fair question to be looking at?”

Palin
“I think it’s a fair question, just like I think past association and past voting records — all of that is fair game. The McCain-Palin campaign didn’t do a good enough job in that area. We didn’t call out Obama and some of his associates on their records and what their beliefs were and perhaps what their future plans were. And I don’t think that that was fair to voters to not have done our jobs as candidates and as a campaign to bring to light a lot of the things that now we’re seeing made manifest in the administration."



Sarah Palin's Facebook response, later that night:
"Voters have every right to ask candidates for information if they so choose. I’ve pointed out that it was seemingly fair game during the 2008 election for many on the left to badger my doctor and lawyer for proof that Trig is in fact my child. Conspiracy-minded reporters and voters had a right to ask... which they have repeatedly. But at no point – not during the campaign, and not during recent interviews – have I asked the president to produce his birth certificate or suggested that he was not born in the United States."



Verdict:
Tempest in teapot. Palin's interview response was reasonable, though not as clean and precise as it ought have been. Her Facebook response was clarifying, and was consistent with her interview response. Smearing her over this is either misguided or dishonest.


Verdict #2:
The left will try to hang this on her, similar to "potatoe" and "I invented the internet". However, smearing Palin, in future, will be made more difficult by the "boy who cried wolf" dynamic of past smears against her. Undecided voters know she has been smeared like crazy. They will not credit this hysterical accusation against her. There's a chance, actually, that future publicity about this will result in collateral damage to Pres. Obama.


Friday Hot: Tammy Roy


Stratford, Wisconsin mother of three and eco artist:
"My mantra: stay centered with God, keep balance in your life, and use your gifts."

Who could fail to find Ms. Roy attractive? Impossible! A man could spend his days lightheartedly listening to her berate him over his politics, and that man would be happy. Vive la tension politique!

h/t Tom McMahon
Examples of Ms. Roy's work: her blog, 1, 2
Stories: 1, 2, 3, 4.





The Cathedral at Ground Zero

h/t
Cathedrals
by Jay Clifford, written in 1998

In the shadows of tall buildings
Of fallen angels on the ceilings
Oily feathers in bronze and concrete
Faded colors, pieces left incomplete
The line moves slowly past the electric fence
Across the borders between continents

In the cathedrals of New York and Rome
There is a feeling that you should just go home
And spend a lifetime finding out just where that is

In the shadows of tall buildings
The architecture is slowly peeling
Marble statues and glass dividers
Someone is watching all of the outsiders
The line moves slowly through the numbered gate
Past the mosaic of the head of state

In the cathedrals of New York and Rome
There is a feeling that you should just go home
And spend a lifetime finding out just where that is

In the shadows of tall buildings
Of open arches endlessly kneeling
Sonic landscapes echoing vistas
Someone is listening from a safe distance
The line moves slowly into a fading light
A final moment in the dead of night

In the cathedrals of New York and Rome
There is a feeling that you should just go home
And spend a lifetime finding out just where that is

In the cathedrals of New York and Rome
There is a feeling that you should just go home
And spend a lifetime finding out just where that is

Thursday, December 03, 2009

Barack Obama, criticism, and racial healing

I see, in past couple of weeks, massive criticism of a black man, yet no one shouting racism. This is a very, very good thing - for all of us, maybe especially for persons with black skin.

When a white person criticizes a black person: massively, vehemently, w/o holding anything back, w/o even a thought of holding anything back, with no hesitation whatsoever … this is racial healing. This is what black people in America have needed, even if many black persons did not know it. This is a casting aside of condescension. This is respect flowing from white persons to black persons. This is a very, very good thing, and I am so happy to see it.

I knew, when Barack was elected, that this day would come. As much as I detested his election, I just as much looked forward to this day. Even a few weeks ago, some major news outlets were speculating about whether or not criticism of the President was racially motivated. The President tamped down such sentiment during an appearance on Letterman. However, now, in the last two weeks, I see criticism which is not accompanied by charges of racism. Bravo, America.

4-Block World: Obama's Afghanistan Speech Strategy


4-Block World w/Imaginary Blocks
inspired by Tom McMahon's 4-Block World


````````````````````Hawks````````````Doves

What Obama ``````Departure will
wanted them ```````depend on`````````Departing in 2011
to hear:```````````conditions
`` ````````````````on ground

```````````````````````````````````Departure will
What they heard:``Departing in 2011````depend on
`````````````````````````````` ``````conditions
`````````````````````````````` ``````on ground


``10 Months After Inauguration: The Public Is Onto Obama
`
`
`