Monday, July 31, 2006

is this relevent now?

Now a word from Maryland Politics Now:
MD’s Democratic Party is fielding a transgendered candidate for state delegate. If elected, Dana Breyer, would be the first transgendered state official in the country. Breyer is quoted on saying “Americans are secretly liberals” and that politicians shouldn’t uphold the bible. Mayor O’Malley, the democratic candidate for Governor in Maryland, seems to be an ardent supporter of this candidacy and the transgender movement. Check it out.
This could be found in my weblog's comments here and 'twas written way back in May. It's hardly the most relevent response to a post about Rush Limbaugh interviewing Tony Snow.

Al Gore's anti-scientific prophecy - TEN YEARS!

Algore: We Have Ten Years Left Before Earth Cooks

January 27, 2006


RUSH: Try this one from yesterday's stack. I don't know if you people know this or not, but Al Gore has been out at the Sundance Film Festival out there in Park City, Utah. This is one of Robert Redford's big do's, and apparently Al Gore is working on a movie that -- what is the name of this movie? Oh, that's right, "An Inconvenient Truth," and the movie will document his efforts to raise alarm on the effects of global warming, and so he brought Tipper and the kids out there.

He's attending parties and posing for pictures with his fans. He's enjoying macaroni and cheese at the Discovery Channel's soirée. He's palling around with Laurie David of Curb Your Enthusiasm, who is the husband of Larry David, who drives the Prius and then flies the GV. Larry David says, "You know, Al is a funny guy, but he's also a very serious guy who believes humans may have only 10 years left to save the planet from turning into a total frying pan."

Now, the last time I heard some liberal talk about "ten years" it was 1988, Ted Danson. We had ten years to save the oceans; we were all going to pay the consequences, which would result in our death. Now Al Gore says we've got ten years. Ten years left to save the planet from a scorching. Okay, we're going to start counting. This is January 27th, 2006. We will begin the count, ladies and gentlemen. This is just... You have to love these people -- from afar, and from a purely observational point of view.


from Rush Limbaugh home page.

"I am something different" - "Bible Study" for Liberals

Jeff Blanco takes meaty shots at the abortionist lefists and other twisters of civil liberties. It's easier when you treat it like a religion and then assume the Left faith.

Congressman Schwarz is weak on the border (big surprise); that can only hurt him

Walberg Leads Schwarz: Michigan Incumbent Suffers from Liberal Voting Record

Excerpts reprinted with permission from Minateman PAC
Sunday, July 30, 2006

-- No good news for incumbent in Michigan-7 Survey.

Walberg leads Schwarz, 37-34

Incumbent Congressman Joe Schwarz trails his GOP primary opponent by 3 points in a new survey released today by Minuteman PAC, the political arm of the grassroots volunteer border security movement patrolling the US Borders.

Tim Walberg, a former State Representative who narrowly lost to Schwarz in 2004, leads the embattled incumbent by 37-34—a lead that expands to 41-34 with those definitely coming to the polls.

The results are encouraging and give hopes that Minuteman PAC activity in the next ten days will help Walberg solidify his lead.

“What we found out from our survey is that voters disagree strongly with Congressman Schwarz’s liberal views on immigration related issues such as ‘Guest Worker’ Amnesty for illegal aliens, multilingual election ballots, and allowing illegal aliens to be eligible for affirmative action and welfare,” explained Chris Simcox, Honorary Chairman of the Minuteman PAC.

Simcox said that Minuteman PAC plans to spend between $50,000 and $125,000 in the South Central Michigan district over the next two weeks on TV, radio and newspaper ads, phone banks and grassroots GOTV (“get-out-the-vote”) activities.

Just 33 percent of respondents said that Schwarz had done a good enough job to deserve reelection, while a 40 percent plurality said it was time for someone new. Overall, Congressman Schwarz has a favorable rating of 32 percent, an unfavorable rating of 21 percent with 12 percent mixed. 98 percent of respondents had heard of Schwarz. With definite voters, however, Schwarz’s favorable/unfavorable dips to 32-25, indicating that those unfavorable to him are more motivated to vote.

83 percent of all respondents had heard of Walberg and he has a favorable rating of 29 percent—just a few points below the incumbent, and an unfavorable rating of merely 9 percent. With conservatives, who make up 55 percent of all voters and 59 percent of those definitely coming out, Walberg is 43-3 favorable versus 26-27 for Schwarz.

Walberg leads conservatives 51-25. He is up 62-12 in Lenawee County and 56-19 in Hillsdale County. The candidates are tied 37-37 in Jackson County. Schwarz runs below 50 percent in his home county of Calhoun (46-33).

By a 17-52 margin, respondents are less likely to vote for a candidate for Congress who supports having election ballots in both English and Spanish. Schwarz voted recently in support of an Amendment mandating multilingual ballots as part of the Voting Rights Act renewal.

By a 14-62 margin, voters are less likely to vote for a candidate who supports proposals allowing illegal aliens to remain in the country and eventually gain citizenship. It is 16-62 with undecided voters. Schwarz supports this agenda.

65 percent of all voters attend religious services weekly and Walberg leads by 45-27 among this group. Schwarz leads 44-22 with those who attend religious services “rarely” or never.

“Barring an unforeseen event in the final ten days, Walberg, poised with strong resources according to current FEC reports, is in an excellent position to win when the votes are counted,” concludes a memo to the PAC from the pollster.

In the U.S. Senate race, Mike Bouchard leads Keith Butler by 17-10 with 73 percent undecided.


Neighborhood Research completed 362 surveys from individuals who had voted in either the 2002 or 2004 Primaries and said their chances of voting in the August 8th Primary were “definite” or “very likely.” The theoretical margin of error for this survey is +/- 5.1% in 95% of cases. Surveys were completed between July 16 and July 18, 2006.

CONTACT: Brett Farley, Minuteman PAC (866) 407-4258

Rick Shaftan, Neighborhood Research (973) 726-8114

article from ChronWatch

Galactic Fleet Battleships

There's the GSS Daring, the GSS Audacity, and the GSS Suicidal Insanity.

Tell me where I got the names.

Laetitia Casta pictures stuff

Going over here can lead you to bikinis and lingerie shots.

There are more pictures and other stuff here.

the peoples' official homepages

purportedly -
definitely -

Sunday, July 30, 2006

a person of color

Rather the young woman makes for some colorful imagery.




Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Wictory Wednesday

This week Wictory Wednesday presents Doug Lamborn for Congress for
the 5th District of Colorado.

Doug Lamborn is a solid conservative with a history of fiscal
restraint. He supports reforming education to give more choices to parents
instead of dumping more money into a bloated bureaucracy. He believes
there should be little to no federal role in education as those decision
should be best left up to local areas to determine their own needs.
Education is the absolute key to continued economic development and
sustainability and it is clear that school choice will once again produce
schools and students who are representative of the greatness of this

Senator Lamborn understands that the problem with health care in the
United States is not because the government isn't in charge, but because
the government has skewed the incentive system away from consumers.
The solution isn't to remove the consumer even farther from the equation,
but to put the consumer square in the middle and allow them to make
flexible choices for their own health care.

The use of eminent domain to take property from the disenfranchised and
give it to the enfranchised has left those on all parts of the
political spectrum a sense of fear. It was only a matter of time when the
Court gave local governments the right to kick people out of their homes
that those governments would stop paying fair market value for the
properties they seized. Senator Lamborn understands private property rights
as a foundational aspect of our society, government, and nation. Our
freedoms are not something granted by the government out if its
magnimity, but these are rights inherent in our society that the government is
not free to intrude upon.

Senator Lamborn has won endorsements from the NRA, the National
Pro-Life Alliance, and the Club for Growth as well as many other conservative
endorsements. Please consider helping Doug Lamborn win in November by
contributing or
volunteering for his campaign.

This has been a production of the Wictory Wednesday blogburst. If you
would like to join Wictory Wednesday, please see this post or contact John Bambenek at jcb (dot) blog [at] gmail {dot}
com. The following sites are members of the Wictory Wednesday team:

A Man Worth Knowing

from Imprimis May 2006

David McCullough

David McCullough was born in 1933 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and was educated there and at Yale University. Author of 1776, John Adams, Truman, Brave Companions, The Path Between the Seas, Mornings on Horseback, The Great Bridge and The Johnstown Flood, he has twice received the Pulitzer Prize and twice the National Book Award, as well as the Francis Parkman Prize and the Los Angeles Times Book Award.

The following is adapted from a public lecture delivered at Hillsdale College on March 31, 2006, during Mr. McCullough's one-week residency at the College to teach a class on “Leadership and the History You Don't Know.”

I think that we need history as much as we need bread or water or love. To make the point, I want to discuss a single human being and why we should know him. And the first thing I want to say about him is that he is an example of the transforming miracle of education. When he and others wrote in the Declaration of Independence about “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness,” what they meant by “happiness” wasn't longer vacations or more material goods. They were talking about the enlargement of the human experience through the life of the mind and the life of the spirit. And they knew that the system of government they were setting up wouldn't work if the people weren't educated. “If a nation expects to be ignorant and free, in a state of civilization,” Jefferson wrote, “it expects what never was and never will be.”

John Adams was born into a poor farm family. He is often imagined as a rich Boston blueblood. He was none of those. His one great advantage, or break, was a scholarship to college–to Harvard College, which at that time had all of four buildings and a faculty of seven. Adams entered Harvard when he was 15 and discovered books. After that, he later recalled, “I read forever.”

At a young age, he began to keep a diary–it was about the size of the palm of your hand, and his handwriting so small you need a magnifying glass to read it–with the idea that by reckoning day-by-day his moral assets and liabilities, he could improve himself: “Oh! that I could wear out of my mind every mean and base affectation, conquer my natural pride and conceit,” he wrote. His natural pride and conceit would be among the things his critics would throw at him for the rest of his life. What's so interesting here is that he recognized this himself so early.

On July 21, 1756, at the age of 20, he wrote this memorable entry:
I am resolved to rise with the sun and to study Scriptures on Thursday, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday mornings, and to study some Latin author the other three mornings. Noons and nights I intend to read English authors . . . . I will rouse up my mind and fix my attention. I will stand collected within myself and think upon what I read and what I see. I will strive with all my soul to be something more than persons who have had less advantages than myself.
But the next morning he slept until seven, and in a one-line entry the following week he wrote: “A very rainy day. Dreamed away the time." There was so much that he wanted to know and do, and he would have moments when he thought life was passing him by: “I have no books, no time, no friends. I must therefore be contented to live and die an ignorant, obscure fellow.”

Adams went to Harvard with the implicit understanding that he would become a minister, but he was never really drawn to that calling. In August 1756, he signed a contract with a young Worcester attorney to stay under his inspection (as they put it) for two years. The day after, inspired by a sermon he had heard and also perhaps by a feeling of relief over his decision, he walked outside and recounted that the night sky was an “amazing concave of Heaven sprinkled and glittering with stars” that threw him “into a kind of transport,” such that he knew such wonders to be gifts of God. “But all the provisions that [God] has [made] for the gratifications of our senses,” he continued,
are much inferior to the provision, the wonderful provision, that He has made for the gratification of our nobler powers of intelligence and reason. He has given us reason to find out the truth, and the real design and true end of our existence.
Making It Happen

Adams quickly rose in his profession and took an interest in politics. By the time he became president in 1796, he had served a multitude of duties for his country. He had been one of those who explained the philosophy and principles of the American Revolution to the people of the time through what he wrote in newspapers. He had defended the hated British soldiers who were arrested and put on trial after the so-called Boston Massacre, when nobody else would defend them. Asked to do so, and knowing that it might destroy his political career, he thought it his duty in a society governed by law. And it didn't hurt his career one bit because people saw that he was a man of conviction. He had served brilliantly in the Continental Congress. Among other accomplishments, he was the man who put the name of George Washington in nomination to become the commander-in-chief of the Continental Army; he chose Thomas Jefferson to write the Declaration of Independence; later on he would put John Marshall on the Supreme Court. If he had done nothing but these three things, he would be someone we should know.

Adams more than anyone got the Continental Congress to vote for the Declaration. We have no records of what he said. Deliberations took place behind closed doors, out of fear of spies in Philadelphia. Keep in mind that only about a third of the country supported the Revolution. Another third was opposed–the Loyalists or Tories, who saw themselves as the true patriots because they were standing by their King. The remaining third, in the human way, were waiting to see who won. But Adams got the Congress to vote for the Declaration and many wrote about it afterwards. If you've seen the musical 1776, you'll remember that he is the central character. That's as it should be. And there are many people in it singing, “Why don't you be quiet, John Adams?” or “Why are you so obnoxious, John Adams?” When I was working on my biography, I tried to find out who called him obnoxious, and I found only one—Adams himself. He wrote to a friend many years later that he must have been rather obnoxious back then, but that he felt he had to make it happen.

Answering the Call

Adams never failed to answer the call of his country to serve, and he was called upon again and again, always to the detriment of his livelihood and often with risk to his life. He was asked to go to France during the Revolution, and set sail with his 10-year-old son, John Quincy, in the dead of winter. British cruisers were lying off the coast of Massachusetts, just waiting for someone like Adams to make a run for it to try to obtain French war support. Had he been captured, he would have been taken to England, to the Tower of London, and hanged. Keep in mind that everybody who signed the Declaration was putting his head in a noose. When our Founders pledged their lives, their fortunes and their sacred honor, that wasn't just rhetoric. Keep in mind, too, that they were up against the greatest military power on earth and had very little military experience. They had no money—there wasn't a bank in all of America in 1776. And no colonial people had ever successfully revolted against the mother country. Everything was against them.

Adams and his son took a boat out to the frigate Boston on February 13, 1777, from a place called Houghs Neck, near Braintree. I went with my own son to that point on February 13 at about the same time, just at dusk. It was about 28 degrees, whereas I think it was 24 or 25 degrees in 1777. We got out of a nice warm car to walk down to the shore wearing good down coats and we stood there with those big, green rollers coming in and the clouds looking very ominous and the wind blowing, and we were freezing. We thought to ourselves, how in the world did they have the courage to do it? Adams had never set foot on a ship before. The crossing would take weeks, perhaps months, if they made it. And as it turned out, everything that could have gone wrong went wrong. They were hit by a hurricane. They encountered an enemy ship and fought a battle. They were becalmed for a long period. But they eventually made it. Adams served in France for about a year, then was called home.

Returning, he wrote the Constitution of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts–the oldest written constitution still in use anywhere in the world today–which is a rough sketch of our national Constitution ten years later. It was complete with a bill of rights and with a paragraph unlike anything in any previous constitution. Listen to it, and remember that it was written in wartime, and by a man who was the first of his family to have an education:
Wisdom and knowledge, as well as virtue, diffused generally among the body of the people being necessary for the preservation of their rights and liberties; and as these depend on spreading the opportunities and advantages of education in various parts of the country, and among the different orders of the people, it shall be the duty of legislators and magistrates in all future periods of this commonwealth to cherish the interests of literature and the sciences . . . .
Many people today are saying that we should be teaching morals in our schools. They could find support in the closing line of this section of the Commonwealth Constitution, which speaks of the necessity “to countenance and inculcate the principles of humanity and general benevolence, public and private charity, industry and frugality, honesty and punctuality in their dealings, sincerity, good humor, and all social affections, and generous sentiments among the people.” Again, if Adams had done nothing but write this remarkable document, he would be someone whose character would deserve our attention. And no sooner had he finished it than he was called upon again to go to France.

No Simpler Times

Let me say a word about Abigail Adams. She probably had better political sense than her husband, and was a better judge of people. And she loved politics. There is a wonderful scene in the White House after Adams had been defeated for re-election by Jefferson. Jefferson was invited to come over and have dinner, as were many members of the Senate and the House. He sat at the table beside Abigail, asking “Who's that man over there?” and “Who's this one over here?” And she told him everything about them–where they came from, what their constituency was, what their interests were. She was as bright as can be and had a backbone of iron. She probably didn't weigh 100 pounds, standing only about five feet one. I think she's one of the greatest Americans of all time. And you can discover her, too, in her marvelous correspondence with her husband during his long absences.

Something I always like to emphasize is that there never was a simpler past. We hear often, “Oh, that was a simpler time,” but it's always wrong. Imagine Abigail's life. Up in the morning at about 5 to light the fireplace that served as the kitchen, call to the children to come down, cook the breakfast, tend the stock, try to keep the farm solvent during the whole war with her husband gone and with inflation and with shortages of everything. Schools were closed, so she had to educate the children at home. Her day didn't end until 9 or 10 at night when the children would go upstairs to their bedrooms, where it could be so cold that the water in the bowls that they used to wash their faces was iced over. And then she would sit down at the kitchen table with a single candle and write some of the greatest letters ever written by any American.

In one plaintive letter, she writes: “Posterity who are to reap the blessings will scarcely be able to conceive the hardships and sufferings of their ancestors.” And we don't. We don't know what they went through–epidemics of smallpox or dysentery, which could take the lives of hundreds of people just in the little town of Quincy, Massachusetts. It was by no means a simpler time. They had to worry about things that we don't even think about any more, and suffer discomforts and inconveniences of a kind that we never even imagine. We have little idea of how tough they were. Imagine John Adams setting off in the middle of winter to ride nearly 400 miles on horseback to get to Congress. Try riding even 40 miles sometime. John and Abigail were separated, in all, more than ten years because of his service to the country.

Much is written about Adams' vice presidency under Washington, and about his presidency. But his diplomatic duties were as important as anything else he did. Primarily, he got the Dutch to give us massive loans, which really saved our Revolution–we would probably have lost the war with England had it not been for Holland. He went to the Netherlands on his own, knowing nobody. He didn't speak Dutch. He didn't have authorization from Congress because he was out of touch with Congress. But he succeeded. He once said that if anything were written on his tombstone, it should be that he was the man who got the Dutch to provide the loans to win the war. Yet this fact is little known or understood by most Americans.

Later on, Adams would say the same thing about being the president who kept us out of war with France. His presidency is often associated with the war frenzy that led to the Alien and Sedition Acts, which Adams signed and which would always stand, appropriately, as a black mark against him. Adams was not a great president. But he was a very good one and I think he should be judged as more presidents should be judged–not just by what he did, but what he didn't do. He didn't go to war with France. Had he done so, he would have been re-elected, and he knew it. As it was, the 1800 election was extremely close. A change in about 300 votes in New York City would have re-elected him. And let us not forget that one of the most important turning points in our country, even in the world, was that election, because there was a peaceful transition, following a bitter election, from one party to another. It was not contested by armed opposition, which was the historical norm. Adams went home to Quincy–having traveled more in the service of his country than any other American of that time–and never went anywhere ever again, although he lived for 25 more years.

The Inward Journey

Writing a biography and realizing that your subject is going to stay at home his final 25 years, you wonder how you are going to sustain the rest of the book. But there are all kinds of surprises in life, and to me the great surprise of the last part of Adams' life is that in many ways it's the most interesting. It's at this point that the inward journey begins. He suffers as he has never suffered before. He loses not only Abigail, but their beloved daughter of the same name. Those who say that people then lived in a simpler time should imagine their daughter having a mastectomy in a bedroom of their house with no anesthetic. Adams lost his wife and daughter, he lost a son to alcoholism, he lost his teeth and hair, he lost friends, he lost all of his power, his prestige, his influence. But he kept going. In fact, curiously, having in many ways been seen as a pessimist, he became increasingly an optimist. It's in this last part of his life especially that you feel his real fiber.

John Adams, a farm boy, became the most widely and deeply read of any American of that bookish time–more so even than Jefferson. At the age of 80, he launched into a 16-volume history of France in French, which he had taught himself on his Atlantic crossings. And he pours out his innermost feelings to a few remaining friends and to some of his family, including John Quincy. Let me read you two excerpts. The first deals with his growing sense of wonder:
I never delighted much in contemplating commas and colons, or in spelling or measuring syllables; but now if I attempt to look at these little objects, I find my imagination, in spite of all my exertions, roaming in the Milky Way, among the nebulae, those mighty orbs, and stupendous orbits of suns, planets, satellites, and comets, which compose the incomprehensible universe; and if I do not sink into nothing in my own estimation, I feel an irresistible impulse to fall on my knees, in adoration of the power that moves, the wisdom that directs, the benevolence that sanctifies this wonderful whole.
I never delighted much in contemplating commas and colons, or in spelling or measuring syllables; but now if I attempt to look at these little objects, I find my imagination, in spite of all my exertions, roaming in the Milky Way, among the nebulae, those mighty orbs, and stupendous orbits of suns, planets, satellites, and comets, which compose the incomprehensible universe; and if I do not sink into nothing in my own estimation, I feel an irresistible impulse to fall on my knees, in adoration of the power that moves, the wisdom that directs, the benevolence that sanctifies this wonderful whole.
A rain had fallen from some warmer region in the skies when the cold here below was intense to an extreme. Every drop was frozen wherever it fell in the trees, and clung to the limbs and sprigs as if it had been fastened by hooks of steel. The earth was never more universally covered with snow, and the rain had frozen upon a crust on the surface which shone with the brightness of burnished silver. The icicles on every sprig glowed in all the luster of diamonds. Every tree was a chandelier of cut glass. I have seen a queen of France with 18 millions of livres of diamonds upon her person and I declare that all the charms of her face and figure added to all the glitter of her jewels did not make an impression on me equal to that presented by every shrub. The whole world was glittering with precious stones.
Adams died, as many of you know, the same day Jefferson died. Jefferson had been his closest friend, then his political rival, then his political enemy. After twelve years of neither speaking to each other, Adams initiated the first letter of what was to be one of the great reconciliations in our history. The correspondence between these former presidents lasted until their deaths, and is some of the most wonderful letters in the English language. And then they died on the same day, each in his own bed, surrounded by his books. And it wasn't just any day. It was the 4th of July, 50 years after the Declaration of Independence. People at the time saw it as the clearest sign imaginable that the hand of God was involved with the destiny of the United Statesand who could blame them?

Adams died, as many of you know, the same day Jefferson died. Jefferson had been his closest friend, then his political rival, then his political enemy. After twelve years of neither speaking to each other, Adams initiated the first letter of what was to be one of the great reconciliations in our history. The correspondence between these former presidents lasted until their deaths, and is some of the most wonderful letters in the English language. And then they died on the same day, each in his own bed, surrounded by his books. And it wasn't just any day. It was the 4th of July, 50 years after the Declaration of Independence. People at the time saw it as the clearest sign imaginable that the hand of God was involved with the destiny of the United Statesand who could blame them?
he fire for some time threatened the most destructive effects–but through the exertions of the citizens, animated by the example of the President of the United States (who on this occasion fell into the ranks and aided in passing the buckets), was the fire at length subdued.
Adams said once, “I am but an ordinary man. The times alone have destined me to fame.” But don't believe that for a minute. Certainly they were the most interesting times imaginable. But he was an extraordinary man.

His faith in God and the hereafter remained unshaken. He was as devout a Christian as ever served in our highest office. His fundamental creed he had reduced to a single sentence: “He who loves the Workman and his work and does what he can to preserve and improve it, shall be accepted of Him.” His confidence in the future of his country was, in the final years of his life, greater than ever. Human nature had not changed, however, for all the improvements his generation had brought about. Nor would it, he was sure. Nor did he love life any less for its pain and uncertainties. Once, in a letter to his old friend Francis van der Kemp in the Netherlands, he'd written: “Griefs upon griefs! Disappointments upon disappointments. What then? This is a gay, merry old world, notwithstanding.” It could have been his epitaph.

Reprinted by permission from IMPRIMIS, the national speech digest of Hillsdale College (

Monday, July 24, 2006

Multiple Fronts in the War on Terror

There are terrorist cells in the US; it's an unpleasant concept to consider.

it's not a dry and humorless television schedule

The Two
12:00 AM, 1 hr
Mon 07/24/2006
English, 2003
There's hell to pay as season three sends Syd after Vaughn for giving up hope, Sloane for weaseling his way into a formal pardon and an NSC honcho for locking her father away on bogus charges. Meanwhile, the CIA needs the newly resurrected Bristow on a case that could be tied to her two-year disappearance and the recent murders of eight operatives. Weiss: Greg Grunberg. Dixon: Carl Lumbly.
Cast & Credits: Jennifer Garner, Ron Rifkin, Victor Garber, Michael Vartan, Bradley Cooper

Fascinating what a tv guide blurb has about the Alias third season premiere.

Kenny with the parka hood down

This is the visage of the South Park character, naturally and it satisfies some curiousity I imagine. The character's unmuffled voice is also revealed in the same medium/production this still comes from: South Park - Bigger, Longer & Uncut

Saturday, July 22, 2006

How presents the Miami Vice Tv thing

8/7c Saturday, July 22
Colin Farrell and Jamie Foxx host a three-hour Miami Vice event that takes you back in time with the original 2-hour Miami Vice pilot - now in HD! - and up to the present with an original featurette on acclaimed director Michael Mann's new take on his own '80's classic. Don't miss a car chase, explosion, Don Johnson's infamous wardrobe, or a special sneak peek at this summer's hottest blockbuster... Miami Vice!

Saturday Night TV - Strange Days

Tonight's got some choices for movies, motion pictures, as the programming. NBC has a theme with it. Coincidently it's all about the past. I'm not covering this in order of relevence, as if there ultimately was any to be found on television tonight. All times are in Eastern Daylight Savings Time (EDT).

ABC is running the Dennis Quaid movie, The Rookie, which I have no interest in. That flick goes from eight to eleven pm and quite naturally, is "edited" for "time", "content", and to cut and slice the widescreen down to the standard television feature dimension. Not that a biopic about a relative oldster making a Major League debut isn't a nice idea but it isn't my cop of tea. It takes place in the late nineties.

CBS has on from eight to ten pm a film that I love. Behind Enemy Lines is (to me) a great movie and it stars Owen Wilson and Gene Hackman (who happens to be one of my favorite actors, quite possibly my favorite actor). I won't watch it on television; I saw it in the theatre and loved it and it's great in the transition to DVD. There's no way I can suffer a viewing of this movie as it is cut to pieces to have commercials, commercial interuption jammed in, and especially will not sit for anything that isn't a widescreen presentation of the flick. It's edited for content, to fit the time alotted, and to fit the screen! Why bother?! It's set in the mid-nineties and (loosely based on reality) about a Navy fighter pilot crashed in Bosnia and hunted by Slavic baddies. It is topical; no one with a good moral center maintains that ethnic cleansing is a good thing.

NBC has Miami Vice: Undercover from eight to eleven pm. Within three hours is nothing that had to edited for time, content or anything. In commemoration of the brand new movie that's remaking/adapting the classic television show that began in 1984 and was iconic of that decade (in its own way). The program contains a long preview/commercial promoting, explaining, and spoiling the new flick with Michael Mann heading the flick and has Colin Farrell and Jamie Foxx replacing Don Johnson and Philip Michael Thomas in the roles of "Sonny" Crockett and "Rico" Tubbs, respectively. That is less than the first half-hour of the total program. When I say that they are spoiling the new movie I seriously declare that they are giving away large chunks about the direction of the film. That part is about ruining the future experience of future movie-goers but the remainder of the program until 11 pm is an excellent idea: because there is a new thing coming out with the old name, NBC is presenting (re-presenting?) the pilot for the original television series, with all violence and intended story and production preserved and in place. All around that presentation is stuff about the original series. This whole thing seems to be equal parts tribute to the classic and cheap advertisement for a new product. That's on in my background. I confess that I am not paying total attention. After the 1984 pilot is completed the network will run an "exclusive" excerpt from the movie.

On a note about stuff with lesser viewing audiences, the network formely known as PAX has The Great Santini from eight-thirty to eleven pm. I'm not going to see it now and it will be run again on Sunday night at the same time in the same places. I know what it is about.
PG, Strong Language/Violence, English, 1979
Fine acting distinguishes this story of conflict between a gung-ho Marine pilot (Robert Duvall) and his sensitive son (Michael O'Keefe). Lillian: Blythe Danner. Mary Anne: Lisa Jane Persky. Also called "The Ace." Directed by Lewis John Carlino.
Purportedly it takes place shortly before the Vietname War. I won't see it tonight or tomorrow. Is this all about coincidental thematics? I doubt it. The NBC and CBS movies weren't set in present day when they were created but they certainly were about contemporary topics. The new Miami Vice is not set in 1984 and the original was set in its very own present day. It's just a series of coincidences.

On the plus side I think it's a good thing when one of the major networks (finally) runs a movie that is made in the 20th century and definitely something a vintage from before 1990. The Independent Television Network does it because it was cheap and they got a good deal on the old Warner Bros movie library. NBC is doing it now because of a relationship with something quite and bright new but they should continue doing it for better reasons.

Video-Game-Design articles

Let's look here.

Thursday, July 20, 2006

The President Vetoes!

Conservative critics of our American President have often lamented that in nearly six years of his eight-year tenure George W. Bush has never lifted the mighty veto pen and never removed from play a single bill that the legislative branch has passed across his desk. He now has.

some Transformers stuff, including the Transformers Bible

Let's demonstrate something to fact that I have been doing some of my own research into all of this and I'm still to record what I can and share interesting tidbits as possible.

Never forget the fun.

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

I Will Never Find That Transformers Article!!

I doubt I will find much help here, given the small amount of readers and certain lack of variance of interests, knowledge, and experience among all of that number.

Nonetheless, a couple years back I read a long article, a single site/page that was likely a text file and nothing more. It was a comprehensive essay going over the entire publishing history of the Transformers comic book published by Marvel UK, including such details as what robots were answering the letters in the letter column at what time and even the general elation that some British fans felt that the American comic was being cancelled after 80 issues, thus freeing the UK comic from the constraints of fitting in the continuity of American-borne storylines.

It was long. It was detailed. I cannot find it. Google is ineffective. I don't remember how I found it the first place nor do I know that it even still exists.

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Ditko the Hero - from bookmunch

Bookmunch overviews Steve Ditko's career and notes than when the protagonist character becomes infallible the dramatic power within the story suddenly decreases. Did his "ideological dogma" overwelm genuinely artistic and creative sensibilities? Obviously David Thompson thinks so. I got the impression that he who Dials B for Blog would disagree.

Dialing B with Mr. A.

Robby Reed on Dial B for Blog (I still cannot know if that is his real name) did a three-part piece on legendary comic book creator Steve Ditko, going over facts about the man, the growth and evolution of his philosophy and ideology and how and when that specficially came to affect his work.

Simply put Steve Ditko was co-plotting and pencilling the Amazing Spider-Man and Doctor Strange for Marvel Comics, but upon the introduction of Aym Rand and her works/beliefs/philosphies into his mind his work went into another direction. Mr. Reed also feeds us a short yet comprehensive biography for Ms. Rand as he ties her Objectivism into the article on Steve Ditko. In this way we start with Aym to introduce Mr. A as ultimately this is not just a representation of Steve Ditko in general but certainly focused on the Objectivism of the later works, taking time to study other themes. It's told in three parts.

Monday, July 17, 2006

the Super Powers action figures

Here is a page dedicated to the stuff of the Super Powers action figures. It's called the Super Powers Archive.

There's a point.

The Powers of the Martian Manhunter!!

Over on Captain Comics' forum, Commander Benson and company do a rundown on the powers of the Manhunter from Mars and how they have evolved over the years. In the original Silver Age stories there was a lack in consistency.

she's a Role Model, don't you know

I'm more than a little sick of young womanfolk basically wearing their bras in a manner quite visible on the outside.

Mind you this is not a campaign against cleavage or the existence of the bikini, but underwear is underwear! I guess to some it isn't.

streaming Mark Levin

I dunno if it works all the time (I have my doubts, derived from experience, naturally) but if you click here between 6 PM and 8 PM you can listen to the Great One from his home radio station in New York, New York.

Before that time I believe that it is Rush Limbaugh and Sean Hannity, but perhaps that does not apply to the internet.

Contact Yoplait Consumer Services

If you prefer to contact us by telephone, please call us at 1-800-967-5248 between (7:30 a.m. - 5:30 p.m. CT, weekdays) If you prefer to send us a fax, send your fax to 1-800-446-3334. You can also write us a letter at our mailing address:

General Mills, Inc.
P.O. Box 9452
Minneapolis, MN 55440

Electronic contact form.

Friday, July 14, 2006

Can You Wipe My Mind?

written by Scott Hileman, to be read to the tune of and inspired directly by "Can You Read My Mind", which was a rhyme performed by Margot Kidder and featured in Superman: the Movie

Scott says: "Well, most people here have seen Superman Returns, and many have misgivings about elements from Superman II that has consequences in this movie. And while the composer did a bang up job with bringing back the John Williams score, I was surprised that the (in)famous lyrics from the first movie did not return for an encore, which of course, was sung by Margot Kidder in her best non-singing style ala William Shatner's 'Mr Tamborine Man'. To adjust for the current setting and situations, I have applied my non-musical background for the new, updated lyrics:"

Can you wipe my mind,
Did you know what you did to me,
I don't know who you are,
Just a playah from another star,

Here I am with a kid in school,
Knocked up by a god, I'm a fool,
Will look at me wavering,
like a little girl vascillating
You looked right over me,

Can you wipe my mind,
Can you see the things I'm dwelling on,
Wondering where you are,
Picking up another gal in a bar

You can fly, checkin' out booty on the sly,
You and I could've been together,

If you need a friend,
I'm the one to fly pass,
If you need to be loved,
Get another piece of---

Faux Secret Agents out in Public

For those in Rio Lindo, "faux" means "fake". The picture above was taken of a willing and smiling couple, Ambassador Joe Wilson and his wife Valerie Plame. The picture was for an issue of Vanity Fair and published in Vanity Fair. It even predates the infamous two-page spread, or so that is my impression. I stole the above image from the Corner but I cannot recall when.

Now at the recent news that the pair is suing Karl Rove, Scooter Libby, and Dick Cheney for the public revelation that Ms. Plame had employment with the Central Intelligence Agency I am generally tempted to start the project that I have been planning for over thirteen months. I'm tempted to mention that I have, in fact, met Joe Wilson.

Last night when the news broke I was tempted to swing by NRO and all the places and see what was up and post a round-up report of all the commentary on my weblog. I could not; I was late for volleyball and when I returned my connection was impossible (error 262? a busy signal at the University).

I don't have to. Those fine folks at Hot-Air have done it more to my satisfaction
than I ever could.

There are some more original comments to be made about Joe Wilson past and present. I will get around to it. But this does finally give me the opportunity to reprint and emphasize the image that I have been keeping all this time. How could this woman have possibly been a secret agent (she could not have been) if so soon after the broadcast of her name tied in to an affiliation with the CIA she would circulate images of her face to accompany that information? That doesn't seem like the behavior of someone who wants to keep a low profile attached to her activities. Apparently here is the crux of the complaint:
The Complaint specifies that each of the Wilsons has been deprived of their First and Fifth Amendment rights; each has suffered a gross invasion of their privacy; each has been impaired in pursuing professional opportunities; and that they fear for their safety and the safety of their children as a result of the wrongful public disclosures.
How is it that Joe Wilson can honestly complain that his wife's outing has limited his opportunities and has been an obstacle or hindrance for him and/or his wife. I tell you from my perspective that he has certainly suffered more benefit than harm from these events, just looking at the book deals and activities on the lecture circuit. Joe Wilson is not earning chump change from all of this, all of this having never occurred in not for the "outing". If we're seriously claiming that Plame was going forward within the CIA, as a career, and this turn of events through a monkey wrench into that little engine... I seriously say that that is a humorous claim. As a serious man I seriously dispute that in a serious manner. An act of strange deviant nepotism is what brought glory hound Ambassador Joe Wilson to poke around Niger looking for nuclear weapons components. I assert and insist that in her position at the CIA Valerie Plame delegated the job to her husband to seek intelligence on this country's behalf. I also assert that she did it to help him more than to help this country, that he could use the job more than we could use his insight. I assert that Joe Wilson, regardless of what he was told or what he saw or how hard he actually worked to discover one thing or another or another thing that he asserted a political and personal role/position and a need to take a stand of one sort or another instead of actually fulfilling or informing the needs of the Executive Branch. Rather than tell the POTUS or the CIA about his findings Mr. Wilson publicized it all so he could be a political champion against a President to whom he obviously did not hold allegiance. Now, of course, he is not merely a champion of the anti-Bushites but he is a martyr in their bloody cause.

This is indeed a bloody cause which includes the new NYT vs. SWIFT scandal and the Hamdan versus Rumsfeld decision.

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Time to PROTEST!!!!


On Wednesday, July 19th Jennifer Granholm, our radically pro-abortion "Catholic" governor, and Ellen Malcolm of EMILY's List will be leading a rally to celebrate Granholm's efforts to keep partial birth abortion legal in Michigan.

We had a very successful protest at the Michigan March for Choice. Now we have another opportunity to speak up for the voiceless.

Lets get together to stand up for the innocent unborn. It is up to us to defend those who cannot defend themselves. Show Granholm and EMILY's List that we will not give up, we will not back down, we will not stop fighting until every innocent human life is protected!

Bring pro-life signs if you have them, but signs will be available at the protest.

The rally will take place at 12 noon at the Michigan Women's Historical Center and Hall of Fame. The address is 213 W. Main Street, Lansing Mi 48933. If you are coming to protest the rally please meet in front of the center at 11:30. We will probably be gathering along the road to protest or as close as we can get to their rally.

Please forward this message on to your pro-life groups and friends. Invite your Churches. Please send out this message on pro-life, conservative and republican email lists, facebook groups and myspace groups.

For more information:
phone: (248) 890-8738


Joanie Barrett
SFLM President
(248) 890-8738

Friday, July 07, 2006

what do you see what's of note

I backtracked a hit from a source right here which happens to be a post on Cathy Seipp's weblog. The person who came from there actually spent an unusually high amount of time on AD before causing me embarrassment as he or she left by checking out a photographic study of a pregnant woman that I linked. What must a good conservative think of me now?

Who the heck knows. All I know is that the only way someone came to my blog from Mrs. Seipp's is through her Blogs for Bush roll. Also by back tracking I discovered that many bloggers of either end of the political spectrum congregate socially as they reside in close proximity to one another, especially as one graduates from education.

There are babes there.

Furthermore I finally discoverd an image that convinces me that Ann Coulter is a babe. Although not for all the right reasons.

Thursday, July 06, 2006

cellphone ads feature irresponsible dumbheaded parents

Why not? That's a good enough stereotype.

Just a minute ago the television behind me featured a Centennial wireless advertisement. The woman's brat was asking, actually whining, about getting a new phone after what was presumably, and statedly, an unusually short amount of time. So some whiney, bratty , discontented child of a teenager wants the newest and 'greatest" and latest fad item, be it this one in phone-form.

They were in an outdoors restaurant. She turns around sees a dude in a Centennial shirt, and the cameras focuses in on the logo on his breast (this ties into the whole running gimmick of this series of commercials where we're sold the idea these 'Centennial people' are widely recognized authorities on all sorts of cellphone crap and people can, do, and should walk up to them and ask them stuff). Then she taps him on the shoulder and asks 'what do you think?' She explains the situation (or he was eavesdropping, I cannot recall specifically) and then he explains that the program that comes with subscribing to his company's phone service comes with a 'discounts on phones' everytime the consumer/customer/paid subscriber wants brand new phone (needlessly or not). So the bratty, ungrateful girl who desires an unneccessary phone asks her weak mother for a new thing and then she asks a cellphone salesman for advice!!

"Gee, Satan, do you want my soul?" Good Lord! What is a salesman supposed to say when you ask them for advice on whether you should buy something that is relevent to their field? Especially when someone like a phone salesman is dependent on sales commissions to survive! Needless to say the woman turns back around, looks at the discontented spoiled teenager and the girl says "YESSS!" loudly with the hands in the air as if there was a touchdown. The weak mother just gives in. This is stupid and a fictional model for irresponsiblity that probably and unfortunately has real-life parallels.

That, of course, reminds me of the cellphone advertisement where the father asks his daughter if she is going to hang out with her friend that night; she rudely responds and that is his impetus to purchasing a family plan. Now I'll present a summary of that commercial by Agony Booth member qc86, posted on the Agony Booth Forum on March 1, 2005.
A newer commercial that just pisses me off is the one for one of the Family cell phone plans. A father asks his teenage daughter is she is hanging out with her friend that night. The bratty little b**** daughter makes the phone gesture with her hand and says "I don't know, let me check" and acts like she is calling her friend. This convinces the father that it is time to get the family cell phones.

WHAT? If I had a daughter and she acted like such a little brat, I wouldn't give her another thin dime over and above what I was required by law. That one move alone would have made her pay for her entire college by herself. [All she would get is] Hand me down clothing, or, better yet, clothing from Walmart, and generic brand foods. But just for the kid. I'd continue buying myself what I wanted.

PICK UP THE DAMN LAND PHONE you little brat! Kids got along for almost a HUNDRED years with a phone that acutally (GASP) was connected with a WIRE. If you want one so bad, get a frickin' job and get it yourself! And if you are using a cell phone to make a LOCAL call in the early evening, then you are not ready to have on in the first place! This father is going to pay all her overage charges while she calls her local friends on her cell phone when a free land phone is 2 feet from her?
The language and poor grammar aside that is precisely how I feel about the commercial. Treating your parents rudely is how you get expensive luxuries? Are we teaching children that? There probably are more than enough parents in real life who would bow to their kids' whims and whining, just like that.

This is not a good thing. What is it with teenagers and cellphones? We should not now nor ever pass along the notion that a mobile phone is just an average mundane mediocre part of your average not-above-super-class standard for living for people who are effectively children.

Tuesday, July 04, 2006

Happy Independence Day!!

Not out of laziness but certainly to instill a certain sense of perspective (if not a specific and/or intentional one, let alone a specific intentional one or a specifically intentional one) I point you to a few articles from National Review Online.
  • Memories of the 4th
  • Fourth at the Front, which is certainly about instances of heroism in war at this date, or recollections relevent for they are of stuff on the date, from war or battle. It is these sacrifices, in part, which gauruntee our continued freedom.
  • Construction Deconstructed
    is a simple note about a debate between facts and the concept of history as being constructed, which certainly could have sone bearing as how to students learn and then know about the founding of thise country.

There you are. Sorry if it's not quite as thrilling or sentimental as one would have me be.

Monday, July 03, 2006

Now Mona Charen has a blog on NRO

On a occasion (when I read the newspaper, the Lansing State Journal) I read Mona Charen's syndicated column. I should do so every week at Jewish World Review; I do not; that is another of my shortcomings.

Apparently in the past month National Review Online granted her a space of a weblog, entitled Mona's Log.

I'm not certain why it exists and I am not certain what the angle or purpose of this particular weblog is.

Growing Expectation

Husband and wife with a photographic study about her pregnancy with their first child. Then the baby is born.

Wikipedia actually used her as an example of pregnancy at 26 weeks. It was a graphic example.

Court finds a right to jihad in the Constitution

The following is an article written by Mark Steyn that I have reprinted here without permission, only because the Chicago Sun-Times apparently does not keep archives of such material as regular policy. Therefore I am archiving it here. My opinions reflect Mr. Steyn's almost exactly. Original URL:

July 2, 2006


There are several ways to fight a war. On the one hand, you can put on a uniform, climb into a tank, rumble across a field and fire on the other fellows' tank. On the other, you can find a 12-year-old girl, persuade her to try on your new suicide-bomber belt and send her waddling off into the nearest pizza parlor.

The Geneva Conventions were designed to encourage the former and discourage the latter. The thinking behind them was that, if one had to have wars, it's best if they're fought by soldiers and armies. In return for having a rank and serial number and dressing the part, you'll be treated as a lawful combatant should you fall into the hands of the other side. There'll always be a bit of skulking around in street garb among civilian populations, but the idea was to ensure that it would not be rewarded --that there would, in fact, be a downside for going that route.

The U.S. Supreme Court has now blown a hole in the animating principle behind the Geneva Conventions by choosing to elevate an enemy that disdains the laws of war in order to facilitate the bombing of civilian targets and the beheading of individuals. The argument made by Justice John Paul Stevens is an Alice-In-Jihadland ruling that stands the Conventions on their head in order to give words the precise opposite of their plain meaning and intent. The same kind of inspired jurisprudence conjuring trick that detected in the emanations of the penumbra how the Framers of the U..S Constitution cannily anticipated a need for partial-birth abortion and gay marriage has now effectively found a right to jihad -- or, if you're a female suicide bomber about to board an Israeli bus, a woman's right to Jews.

The old-school wars were Britain vs. Germany, Japan vs. Russia, that sort of thing. But we don't hold those as often as we once did, so, for the new school of warfare, Justice Stevens and his chums took refuge in Geneva's Common Article Three, which begins as follows:

In the case of armed conflict not of an international character occurring in the territory of one of the High Contracting Parties . . .

The "High Contracting Parties" are nation states that are signatories to the treaties: America, Belgium, Fiji, Peru and so on. So what might an "armed conflict not of an international character" mean? Well, it refers mostly to civil wars and internal conflicts -- say, when the Northern Wackistani Liberation Army takes on the Southern Wackistani Patriotic Front. As a cursory glance at Rwanda, Sudan or the Balkans shows, these are some of the most depraved slaughterfests. But the aim of the article is the same as that for your full-scale France vs. Prussia fixture: to persuade the parties to wage war in a ''civilized'' manner.

And what did the Supreme Court do? They decided first that Afghanistan was a signatory to the Conventions and thus the various ructions were ''occurring in the territory of one of the High Contracting Parties.'' They then decided that it was an ''armed conflict'' and not only that -- here it comes, folks -- but it was an ''armed conflict not of an international character.''

Hang on a minute. At the time most of the Gitmo detainees were picked up, Afghanistan had more teams than the World Cup: There were Americans, Brits, Aussies, Saudis, Pakistanis, Yemenis, Iranians, Chechens, Uzbeks and all kinds of other fellows running around. Few ''armed conflicts'' have had so many ''international characters.'' The country was in the process of being bombed by the U.S. Air Force from bases on the British colony of Diego Garcia. It was being invaded by two permanent members of the U.N. Security Council.

Ah, but you're not a Supreme Court justice. The reason why this was an ''armed conflict not of an international character'' is that al-Qaida is not a nation. So an article designed to cover internal local conflicts in signatory states within a convention designed to exclude unlawful combatants has been extended to cover non-signatory unlawful combatants in a global jihad taking place on every continent -- and, in effect, read into U.S. law. Congratulations! Why not throw in a complimentary gay marriage for Osama and Mullah Omar while you're at it? Justice Stevens and his pals have now upgraded every terrorist to the rank of field marshal. Wherever you're picked up by the United States anywhere on the planet, chances are it's the ''territory of one of the High Contracting Parties'' -- Afghanistan, Brazil, Singapore, the world's your oyster -- and therefore, as you're a member of al-Qaida, by definition it's an "armed conflict not of an international character.''

And, of course, al-Qaida never need to sign the Conventions now, do they? As the ultimate beneficiaries of the progressive mindset, they get all the benefits with none of the obligations. We're bound, they're not. If you're captured with the severed head of a U.S. soldier in your knapsack, you're covered by Geneva -- and, as your victim learned a mile back up the road, it's too late for him to call his lawyer.

In the broader scheme, Justice Stevens and co, in torturing the language to explain why the international jihad is not "international," have paradoxically conferred quasi-sovereignty on al-Qaida and its affiliates. The obvious question then is: doesn't that also apply to every other "non-state actor" out there? When Hezbollah blew up that Jewish community center and killed 100 people in Buenos Aires in 1994, surely that too was (as Justice Stevens would see it) an "armed conflict not of an international character occurring in the territory of one of the High Contracting States." In fact, under this definition, what isn't?

The immediate consequence of this is that America's friends in India, Australia, Singapore, Denmark and elsewhere will conclude that this country is simply not serious and its descent into moral narcissism too advanced. The long-term consequence will be the opposite of what the justices intended -- the sidelining and eventual discarding of Geneva, at least by nations that wish to survive the depredations of the jihad.

Oh, well. It wasn't all bad news this week. In Kuwait, women voted in parliamentary elections. In Afghanistan, the National Police opened a new regional command center in Kandahar.

I wish them well. It's good they seem to be getting the hang of this functioning society routine because in the long run they won't be getting much meaningful help from what's left of Western civilization.

©Mark Steyn 2006

Copyright © Mark Steyn, 2006

Sunday, July 02, 2006

Comics Fairplay

Go read Comics Fairplay. Do it because I ask you to. Do it because parts seem addicting. Do it despite my immense grudge against 4-Color Review.... which has been going on for about ten years now (I cannot believe that that site has laste this long now) and read the fun.

I also post comments there. Sometimes. I just found it. I found it because Beau Smith was gushing about it.