Saturday, July 30, 2005

Some Good Reads

I've been reading a lot lately and they've been pretty good books. I just finished "One Hundred People Who are Screwing Up America" by Bernie Goldberg and I agree with many of his choices. Most of the list are liberals, like the Hollywood elitists (Barbra Streisand and Sean Penn), rich fatcats like George Soros and CEO Dennis Kozlowski, MSM icons like Dan Rather and Diane Sawyer, Ivory Tower denizens like Ward Churchill and Peter Singer, and of course Washington insiders like Ted Kennedy and Al Gore.

Some of his choices startled me, like Judge Roy Moore (who Goldberg objects to for disobeying a federal court). Now I'm not a lawyer, and perhaps Goldberg is correct to say that when a lower court judge disobeys a higher court ruling then you have chaos. He calls Judge Moore a hypocrite. I find that strange. Moore was following his conscience. Would Goldberg call Moore a hypocrite if he lived in 1857 and disobeyed a court order to return Dred Scott to his owner? History would call him a hero then. I don't believe that blind obedience to a (sometimes corrupt) institution is a virtue. Well, if anyone reading this is a lawyer and can explain it to me I'm willing to listen.

Stranger still was the absence of the Clintons on the list. Maybe the author is swayed by Hilary's endeavors to appear moderate. Goldberg sounds like a social liberal, however, and that's probably why he kept them off the list.

Another good read was "Peace Kills" by PJ O'Rourke. Not a new title, but it sure gave me a few chuckles (and even guffaws), as Mr. O'Rourke often does. He manages to poke fun at the left as well as make humorous self deprecating remarks about America:

re Kosovo: "...wherever there's injustice, oppression, and suffering, America will show up six months later and bomb the country next to where it's happening." Particularly funny was the chapter on Washington D.C. demonstrations.

Speaking of demonstrations, I found this ghastly event:

Be prepared for some pretty disgusting photos... (H/T Michelle Malkin.)

Thursday, July 28, 2005

More Loose Screws

The Mad Doctor himself, Howard Dean, doesn't know who's who or what's what with the Supreme Court Justices.

From Special Report With Brit Hume:

Democratic National Chairman Howard Dean (search) has denounced last month's Supreme Court ruling on eminent domain as a product of "The president and his right-wing Supreme Court." In fact, not one of the justices on the Supreme Court was appointed by President Bush. And the most conservative justices — William Rehnquist, Antonin Scalia, and Clarence Thomas — dissented on that ruling.

Dean, speaking to College Democrats, also accused Republicans of "bring[ing] a culture of corruption to Washington," saying, "they've sold our government to the highest bidder."

What the hell? Is the Mad Doctor suffering from the toxic gases of the Greenhouse Effect? His recent bellowings demonstrate that he has no clue who appointed whom at the Supreme Court. He doesn't know who voted for or dissented against that ruling?

Facts? Nah, who needs facts? He sure doesn't. Demagogues never do.

What's that old adage? "Righty tighty, lefty loosey..."?

Monday, July 18, 2005


The weather is just too nice to spend in front of a computer when I'm home so I'll not be posting for a while... at least until it turns gray and rainy (which is inevitable).

For now it's sunshine and playtime!

Tuesday, July 12, 2005

Taking a Little Vacation

Okay, folks, taking a break and going out of town for some R&R... Golf and kayaking! Whoohoo!!!

See you all when I return!

Oh, and I've turned off the comments because I've got a pet troll here who writes all sorts of weird stuff about his problems and vicious snipes... don't want to dirty up the comment section with his filth.

I've Been Tagged!

Okay, here goes with the movies:

Amount of films I own... I've been replacing the videocassettes with DVDs for the past several years so I'll count how many DVDs only:


I do love movies.

The last film I bought was The Remains of the Day, which I've finally replaced with a DVD.

The last film I saw in the theatre was Batman Begins. It was way cool.

Five films I watch a lot which mean a lot to me:

1. The Lord of the Rings Trilogy.

2. Band of Brothers. The best war film ever made.

3. Pride and Prejudice (A&E Version came out about 10 years ago)

4. Rear Window (Hitchcock directed version). Quite possibly the most perfect film ever made. It never faulters.

5. The Princess Bride. Always cracks me up, plus the quotes are priceless ("Hello, my name is Inigo Montoya, you killed my father; prepare to die!")

There are plenty of others I enjoy but those come to mind right now as my favorites.

Okay... the next ones to be tagged are: (drum roll)

New Victorian and
Ash Wednesday at For Lack of a Better Term!

Monday, July 11, 2005

Replay: It's the Jihad, Stupid!

Cal Thomas offers some insight into the fallacies of the root causes of Islamic Terrorism, perpetrated mainly by the Left and PC-Minded here.

Now it is unemployment and hopelessness among Muslims that are the root cause of terrorism. Finding jobs for them so they can drive nice cars, live in upscale flats and attend West End theaters supposedly will convert them to the British way of life.

Or maybe it is evil America that caused the terrorist attacks. If only the Americans had not invaded Iraq and dragged Britain along, perhaps Britain might have been spared the bus and tube bombings.

Sometimes it takes an outsider to bring people to their senses. Former Israeli Prime Minister (and current Cabinet minister) Benjamin Netanyahu told BBC's "Breakfast" program Sunday that Iraq and other actions by Britain and America are the consequences of terror attacks, not the cause.

Before the Iraq War, terrorism was caused by US Foreign Policy and its close relationship with Israel. Now they say it's because of the Iraq War. This switch reminds me of a scene in Schindler's List, where the sadistic Nazi Commandant is beating his Jewish maid. She asks him "Why are you beating me?" and he answers "I am beating you now because you asked me why I am beating you."

In the U.K., The Sunday Times carried a front-page story exploding the myth of a causal relationship between terrorism and poverty among Muslims. The newspaper reported on leaked Whitehall documents that show "Al-Qaeda is secretly recruiting affluent, middle-class Muslims in British universities and colleges to carry out terrorist attacks" in Britain. The targets of the "extremist recruiters" are students with "technical and professional qualifications."

These are not Muslims without a future. These are bright and educated students who, if they wished, could be productive and prosperous members of British society. But many are embracing a false theology and a god who requires them to kill "infidels."

Bingo. It's not about poverty or foreign policy or a war conducted in the Middle East. It's about a heretical religion whose false teachings are creating murderous fanatics who have no qualms about indiscriminately killing innocent men, women and children.

No amount of G8 aid to the "Palestinians," nor a resolution of the Arab-Israeli conflict, will pacify these current and potential killers. Even if Israel were obliterated (the goal of much of the Muslim world), the terror would continue until the entire non-Islamic world is under their control.

This is not the belief of an "Islamophobic" bigot. This is what they say in their sermons and media, teach in their schools, and believe in their hearts. It matters little that "the overwhelming majority of Muslims are not terrorists," to quote a familiar Western mantra. It matters a great deal that most terrorists are Muslims. The sooner Western leaders and Western media begin stating what is obvious to most people; the quicker the real root cause can be dealt with.

How does one deal with the "real root cause"? I'm not sure. Someone says to give them a better idea than the one they have. That's difficult to do, considering that they routinely murder their own apostates and do not allow other religions to proseltyze.

If Britain and the West are guilty of failing to adequately address the "oppression" of Muslims in Kashmir and Chechnya, do they earn points for intervening in Bosnia to protect Muslims and sending billions to the Palestinian Authority, money that went down a rat hole of corruption?

Do America and Britain win friends among Muslims for allowing them to practice their faith openly (no Muslim country offers the type of religious tolerance that Muslims enjoy in the U.S. and Britain). Why must America and Britain be held accountable for every perceived and actual slight against Muslims, but beheadings of Westerners receive little more than pro forma condemnation and are soon forgotten?

No, we don't gain friends among Muslims for our tolerance. Indeed, I suspect that they secretly scorn us for our softness and indulgence.

There will be no detente, entente or peace treaty between the forces of darkness and those of light. As much as Western politicians may wish to avoid the true root cause of this war, they do so at the peril of their citizens. This is a religious war. The terrorists understand it as such. Too many in the secular and wimpishly religious West do not.

Dark Prediction: Eventually Islamic terrorism will spiral out of control in the Western world like typhoid fever. The fact that we (and Europe) liberally allow the immigration of Muslims and cannot control their influx (and growing population), we will descend into violent chaos and then a Dictator will emerge to "cleanse" us from Islam. Internment Camps. Concentration Camps. Genocide. History repeating itself again and again. Maybe not in my lifetime. Maybe so.

Friday, July 08, 2005

Disturbing Thoughts

From Eternity Road a post which poses more questions and disquiet about the war on terror (by Derbyshire at National Review):

Here, though, you come to another equation in the calculus of appeasement. Is the United States willing to fight this war the way it needs fighting, with grim ferocity and cold unconcern for legalistic niceties? To lay waste great territories and their peoples, innocent and guilty alike, to level cities, to burn forests and divert rivers, to smite our enemies hip and thigh, to carry out summary execution of captured leaders? Of course not — how barbaric! And yet (whispers the ancestral, tribal voice in our heads, and in British heads too) if not, then what’s the point? War is a tribal affair, one tribe exterminating another, or reducing it to utter impotence and ignominious surrender. That’s what war is, and it isn’t anything else. We know this in our bones, from a million years of tribal living and fighting. If we are not willing to fight a war like that — which apparently we are not, being much too civilized — then we should not be too surprised if our allies turn and cut deals with our enemies. At least they’ll have a quiet life, for a while.

How does one fight this war with people who have such utter disregard for the rules of engagement? Our civility is their advantage. The went-to-college, Christian part of my brain shrinks from the idea of killing all Muslims - women and children - yet another part of me knows that this would stop them too. It's ugly, much too ugly.

Rebecca West toured the Balkans and what is now Yugoslavia in the 1930's. She observed much of the ages old conflicts which torment that area and she notes:

...human beings are not reasonable, and do not to any decisive degree prefer the agreeable to the disagreeable. Only part of us is sane: only part of us loves pleasure and the longer day of happiness, wants to live to our nineties and die in peace, in a house that we built, that shall shelter those who come after us. The other half of us is nearly mad. It prefers the disagreeable to the agreeable, loves pain and its darker night despair, and wants to die in a catastrophe that will set back life to its beginnings and leave nothing of our house save its blackened foundations. Our bright natures fight in us with this yeasty darkness, and neither part is commonly quite victorious, for we are divided against ourselves and will not let either part be destroyed...

Furthermore, she notes the strange sense of guilt which grew in England, France and the United States after WWI:

It seems that, choked with our victory in the last war, we now have an appetite for defeat. The new states were full of life, Yugoslavia shook its clenched fists and swore it meant to live. Therefore England and America and France turned away, for what lived disgusted them; they wanted a blanched world, without blood, given over to defeat.

With the emergence of the Second World War, those countries had to rise again and fight for their lives. However, I wonder if that victory did disgust us inside, and we no longer have the will to fight again?

Thursday, July 07, 2005

Churchillian Rhetoric

The Anchoress has posted a good message regarding the terrorist attack on London today:

Perhaps if, in the 1970’s, (when Islamofascists took and held hostages for 444 days) Churchill’s policy had become our policy, 3000 Americans would not have been killed on 9/11, Bali would not have exploded, Spain would not have capitulated and England would not today be in mourning.

Perhaps if, in the 1980’s, (when Islamofascists had bombed soldiers barracks in Lebanon and began calling for holy war) Churchill’s policy had become our policy, 3000 Americans would not have been killed on 9/11, Bali would not have exploded, Spain would not have capitulated and England would not today be in mourning.

Perhaps if, in the 1990’s, (when Islamofascists had bombed the WTC, then the Khobar Towers, then the US Embassies in Nairobi, then the USS Cole - among other worldwide bombings) Churchill’s policy had become our policy, 3000 Americans would not have been killed on 9/11, Bali would not have exploded, Spain would not have capitulated and England would not today be in morning.

Churchill’s necessary policy of 1940 is the necessary policy of today. Fighting against an enemy so cowardly they refuse to wear a uniform, so bereft of shame that they revel in the shedding of innocent blood, there can be no other policy but war and victory.

Terrorism did not begin with the presidency of George W. Bush and the invasion of Iraq, no matter how much Barbara Boxer and Al Franken would like us to believe it. It will not end with the presidency of George W. Bush…it may not end in our lifetime. But our enemies would as soon kill us as look at us and if they could slaughter 38,000 instead of 38, they would do so with relish.

An enemy that looks only to kill the infidel or die trying is an enemy that will only be defeated if they are convinced that they will never win.

And if the cultures that produce these enemies can get a sense of hope that they are not damned to lifetimes under religious or secular tyranny, perhaps they will stop producing them.

Today the Jihadists made a grave error. They think that by attacking the Britons they will reduce the allies in this war against terror. They are wrong. Unlike Spain, the British people will never back down from these cowards.

We are proud to have them as our friends and we stand with them in these dark days.

Words of Encouragement

"A high and solemn responsibility rests upon us here of a Europe striving to be reborn. If we allow ourselves to be rent by pettiness and small disputes, if we fail in clarity of view or courage in action; a priceless occasion may be cast away forever. But if we all pull together and firmly grasp the larger hopes of humanity, then it may be that we shall move into a happier sunlit age, when all the children who are now growing up in this tormented world may find themselves not the victors nor the vanquished in the fleeting triumphs of one country over another, but the heirs of all the treasures of the past and the masters of all the science, the abundance and glories of the future."

-Sir Winston Churchill

(For Scott XXX)


Yesterday our friends across the pond were celebrating their victory in being chosen as the host for the 2012 Olympics.

Today, cowardly terrorists have murdered and injured hundreds of Londoners.

I have already received numerous emails from friends and loved ones over there, and my thoughts and prayers go with them all.

Wednesday, July 06, 2005

Live8 = Let's Indulge Vain Egos

Jonah Goldberg writes about Live8 with some perspective... and perplexity:

OK, so here's what I'm confused about. People watched a concert, which was chockablock with acts supposedly popular with the young 'uns and old 'uns alike. From Snoop Dogg, Will Smith and Coldplay to the more aged likes of Madonna, Sting and Bono. There were even a few troubadours with last names (or at least two first names), such as Elton John.

And the spectacle was impressive, so much so that Chris Martin of Coldplay declared it "the greatest thing that's ever been organized probably in the history of the world." (You've heard of the Normandy invasion, the Manhattan Project, the Marshall Plan, various moon landings, the 2,000-year-old Catholic Church? Impromptu flea markets! We've got a major-league telecast here.)

That got a guffaw from me. I guess Mr. Martin is only aware of the history which occurred during his lifetime.

But tell me, how exactly was Live8 a monumental demonstration of support for helping Africa?

You may be wondering how much money this intercontinental jam session raised for the sick and dying of Africa. Alas, not a farthing. Sir Bob Geldof was very explicit about this point. Live8 was intended to raise consciousness and exert political pressure on the G8 summiteers. No one was allowed to actually raise money for the masses of starving people in Africa. None of the dollars spent on the concert by fans, corporate sponsors, or television networks will reach Africa. Charities couldn't rattle tin cups outside the porta-potties and concession stands. This was solely an effort to prod the West to get behind the slogan, "Make Poverty History."

Nice line. But, uh, how? I'm sure Geldof, Bono and a few others have some ideas worth listening to. But I somehow doubt the Madonna and Snoop Dogg fans in the audience had formed a particularly cogent consensus on how to "Make Poverty History." In fact, I doubt you could get even a fraction of them to agree on a recipe for apple brown betty.

Madonna could. And it might be kosher.

Very smart people have been trying really, really hard to make poverty history for a long time. Heck, they've been working very hard to make Africa just ever-so-slightly less hellish for a very long time. Debt relief is probably part of a potential solution, but without ending Africa's tendency to produce horrible, greedy dictatorships, debt relief is more akin to paying off a drug addict's credit cards.

Even if the concert-goers were speaking with a single voice, they weren't saying anything of much use, except "we care" - and aren't we special people for it? Geldof summed up the attitude perfectly when he said, "Something must be done, even if it doesn't work."

Even if it doesn't work??? Isn't that just futility then? But what the hell, someone's getting rich from these events! It just ain't the Africans!

This concert was an exercise in boosting the self-esteem of the audience. Included in the ticket price was grace on the cheap. T-shirts cost extra. Live8 was an appeal to the vanity of people who collectively aren't concerned enough about Africa to watch a classical music concert.

Yup, it was just another BIG way to massage the massive egos of the rock'n'roll rich (and the middle class who slavishly follow them). Plus it got some publicity for some of the has-beens of the music industry.

Oh That Nancy!

Looks like Nancy Pelosi got caught with her pants down while she was conducting her daily berating of Tom Delay and his unethical travel practices.

According to Townhall's Debra Saunders Nancy got in trouble herself for doing the very same thing as Tom!

As The Washington Post reported, last week Pelosi filed delinquent reports for three trips she herself accepted from outside sponsors. The biggie was a week-long 1999 trip to Taiwan, paid for by the Chinese National Association of Industry and Commerce. The tab for Pelosi and her husband: about $8,000.

Tch, tch... people in glass houses, you know!

Oh and while we're at it, has anyone else noticed a resemblence between Nancy and another bug-eyed brunette? Jennifer Wilbanks? Jen looks like she could have been Nancy's daughter... and perhaps follow her footsteps with a career in politics. After all, she likes to travel!



Idaho kidnapping suspect Joseph Edward Duncan III committed his first act of sexual assault 30 years ago, preying on a 5-year-old boy when he was just 12, according to a report published Wednesday.

Duncan’s records reveal a history of inflicting violence and sexual torture upon others, particularly young boys, with his crimes escalating in their seriousness. His past shows a series of failed treatments and refusal to comply with therapists and law enforcement officials who tried to correct his behavior, which mental health evaluators diagnosed in 1980 as consistent with an anti-social personality and a sexual deviant, the Seattle Times reported.

This is a broken record, repeating the same story again and again and again. We have a sexual predator who hunts the most helpless members of our society permitted to roam the streets.

Duncan was deemed a sexual psychopath at 17, after he was arrested for the rape and torture of a 14-year-old boy in 1980. Police said Duncan broke into a neighbor’s house, stole a gun, and then pulled it on the boy, who was walking to school. Duncan forced him into a wooded area and made the boy take off his clothes and perform a sexual act, according to court documents. Duncan then prodded the boy further into the woods, sexually assaulted him again, and then beat the boy’s buttocks with a stick and burned him with a cigarette. He led the boy back to his clothes and told him to run away.

And it gets even better:

As an alternative to prison, Duncan underwent treatment at the Sex Offender Program and Western State Hospital in Washington state, where he lived during his teenage years. Twenty-two months later, he was kicked out of the program for sneaking off the campus and having rape fantasies, the Times said. A judge then reinstated his 20-year prison sentence in March 1982 and Duncan served 14 years in prison.

Therapy as an ALTERNATIVE TO PRISON??? Why even bother? What is the success rate? Do we ever hear about that??? All I ever hear on the news is the FAILURE of the therapy industry to rehabilitate these scum! I'd like to know who the WA State judge was who permitted this outrage. But there's even more idiot judges out there who let this guy walk:

Duncan's next encounter with the law came in April, when he was released on $15,000 bail after being charged with molesting a boy in Fargo, N.D. Police in Fargo had been looking for Duncan since May, when he failed to check in with a probation agent.

With his history and the judge gives him bail??? Okay, here comes my potty mouth:

WTF??? Why the hell are judges not held accountable for making BAD DECISIONS??? That's their fracking job! If they can't do it, then they should be disrobed!

We hear these horrible stories over and over again and nothing is done to stop these monsters from hurting our children. Would things change if Duncan had kidnapped and raped and murdered a Judge's child? Or a Senator's child?

Dissecting the Left

Our Curmudgeon friend at Eternity Road has an interesting analysis of the Left in context with the impending Supreme Court Nomination battle here.

Good point he makes:

Conservatives have put quite a lot of effort into developing the sort of "higher structure" to their ideas and policy prescriptions that Blankley denies to Justice O'Connor. We see logical consistency around sound premises as a high virtue. It's O'Connor's departures from principles she's claimed to hold that the Right holds against her. If she possesses such a "higher structure," she's succeeded in ignoring it on too many occasions to suit us. We'd like her successor to be more consistent about the application of the Constitution and the principles embodied therein: the fount of all proper American law and government.

Liberals, in contrast, privilege policy outcomes over all other things. More, the outcomes need not bring about any particular consequence; they must merely suit the emotional needs of left-liberalism -- "to look good and feel good while doing good" (Irving Kristol) -- and the power-tropism of left-liberal politicians. To such persons, a principle that might confine their pursuit of these things is anathema.

I always thought that wearing those bracelets to "raise the awareness of poverty" was rather fruitless - only good for smugly proclaiming the superiority of the wearer: "Look at me, I'm so superior to the capitalist pigs who don't wear this bracelet". Or, if you're like has-been Madonna, you can sing at a fund raiser for poverty-stricken Africa whilst dripping with diamonds.

ADDENDUM: I just found out that Live 8 or whatever it's called was NOT a fund raiser. It was an "awareness raiser". No money whatsoever was raised to alleviate poverty in Africa. I'm sure the starving folks in Ethiopia really appreciate the raising of awareness.

Tuesday, July 05, 2005

If You Think Things are Ugly Now...

Just wait till you see the Democrats crucify the next Supreme Court Nominee.

They lost the Executive Branch. They lost the Legislative Branch. So, being the fascists that they are, they have hijacked the Judicial Branch of the Government. Using and supporting activist judges, they (unconstitionally) legislate their left-wing agenda with subterfuge.

They will fight dirty with this impending nomination. Remember Robert Bork? Fred Barnes wrote an article on the lessons the Bush Administration have learned from that ugly scene.

He warns:

Democrats have stalled John Bolton's nomination as ambassador to the United Nations by demanding more and more documents and information, some of which the White House has refused to turn over. So instead of filibustering Bush's choice for O'Connor's seat, they could demand emails, FBI files, and other documents that Bush would be reluctant to deliver. Insistence on disclosing an entire paper trail could drag out a nomination for months and even succeed in defeating the nominee -- that is, unless the White House and congressional leaders have learned a lesson and come up with a tactic to thwart the Bolton ploy.

Yup, that's how the Demokratic Party operates. Obstruction, subterfuge, stalling. So much for the "democratic" process.

Friday, July 01, 2005

Worthy Cause - Susan Torres' Baby

Send a check today!

On May 7th, 2005, the day before Mothers' Day, Susan M. (Rollins) Torres -- a 26-year-old vaccine researcher at NIH; mother of a two-year-old son, Peter; graduate of the University of Dallas; and parishioner at St. Rita's Catholic Church in Alexandria, Virginia collapsed. She was rushed to the Virginia Hospital Center in Arlington, where she has been diagnosed with stage four melanoma and is brain dead with no hope of recovery.

Susan was 17 weeks pregnant at the time and although the doctors have given her no hope of survival, they are fighting to keep her unborn child alive until at least July 11 where he or she will have a viable chance at life.

Her family is really starting to show signs of the strain this is causing; mentally, physically and financially. In an effort to escalate the awareness of their situation, and to help raise additional funds, friends of the Torres family have established The Susan M. Torres Fund to help defray the $1,500 a day ICU medical costs that insurance does not cover.

Please help this family by sending a donation. Any amount is appreciated and it is tax deductible. Donations can be sent to:

The Susan M. Torres Fund
c/o Faith and Action
P.O. Box 34105
Washington, D.C. 20043-0105

Link is here.