Friday, November 30, 2007

This just in...

Filed under "you needed a study for this?":
Republicans are significantly more likely than Democrats or independents to rate their mental health as excellent, according to data from the last four November Gallup Health and Healthcare polls. Fifty-eight percent of Republicans report having excellent mental health, compared to 43% of independents and 38% of Democrats. This relationship between party identification and reports of excellent mental health persists even within categories of income, age, gender, church attendance, and education.

I'm sure they didn't even evaluate for BDS, since it didn't made the DSM-V...

I think it would have been more useful to break people down into "liberal", "conservative", and "moderate", since the parties aren't particularly good proxies the past couple years. I'm surprised there aren't more clinically depressed Americans, the way the Left insists you're either a poor oppressed victim and nothing you do can change your life except wait for government handouts, or you're an evil oppressor of faith and/or pallor and/or testes, and either way you're destroying the Earth and the poor polar bears simply by being alive.

P.S. Zombie has a lovely gallery of "Unflattering Pictures of Hillary Clinton." I won't be sleeping tonight...*shudder*

Attempted first-degree intentional homicide??

When I saw the blurb yesterday about this guy in Kaukauna who slipped his girlfriend RU-486 to cause miscarriages, I figured he'd be charged with falsely obtaining the drug, or dispensing without a license--something that would put him away for awhile but wouldn't offend the delicate sensibilities of Madison by suggesting the dead baby was a human. Pleasantly wrong, I was:
In addition to attempted first-degree intentional homicide of an unborn child, Manishkumar Patel was charged Thursday with second-degree reckless endangerment, placing foreign objects in food, delivery and possession of prescription drugs, stalking, burglary and possession of burglary tools, all felonies, and two misdemeanor counts of violating a restraining order that his girlfriend obtained against him.

I'm shocked to learn that killing an unborn baby 5-7 weeks into gestation is a crime--let alone murder--under ANY circumstance, but it's a pleasant shock. WI isn't all as "progressive" as I thought. Attempted homicide, because at that age natural miscarriages aren't uncommon, but they're open to more charges if they discover more evidence.

I expect protests, and not against the boyfriend. If people start thinking a fetus in the first trimester is a human being....

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Married to government??

One of my great pet peeves is the general condesension I get from married women, who feel free to remind me in no uncertain terms that I'm an immature child, even at my advanced age, because no one ever wanted to marry me. I'm obviously too stupid to be considered adult, unlike their august selves, who haven't so much as changed a lightbulb in years because they have a man to do it for them (note to self: if I'm ever young and cute again, don't admit to men I can change a flat tire by myself--makes them think I don't want them around).

But lately, I'm starting to see where the stereotype comes from. I've read a couple of articles like this over the past year, but I was hoping it would go away...
Unmarried women, it turned out, were more likely than respondents in general to want the president and Congress to pay attention to health care, the economy and jobs, and Social Security and Medicare. They were less likely to want the president and Congress to pay attention to terrorism and national security, illegal immigration, energy and gas prices, taxes and spending, and moral values.'s just too obvious to point out that all those people killed on 9/11, and the thousands more killed by illegal aliens every year since, aren't going to reaping the benefits of Social Security, Medicare or socialized medicine. I'm not very organized on my poli sci, but I'm pretty sure the number one obligation of a government is to keep its citizenry from being destroyed by hostile invaders, not to pay their living expenses.
Unmarried women are also ready to support socialized medicine, the pollsters say. "American voters in general may shy away from 'radical' steps such as importing a Canadian-style system," the pollsters reported. "Unmarried women, however, embrace such a powerful step."

*bangs head against the wall* Ladies, don't expect any sisterhood sympathy from me while you're waiting 18 weeks to start chemotherapy, or when you give birth alone because the system can't afford sufficient staff (aside: the worst offender is a hospital named for Milton Keynes?).
Unmarried women, the pollsters said, "reject the Bush supply-side approach to economics" and agree by 58 percent to 32 percent that America does better when "our government helps create conditions so that many can prosper, not just a few," as opposed to when "we have a limited government that keeps taxes low so that businesses and individuals can prosper."

This is interesting, because more people prosper when a limited government makes it easier for individuals and businesses to succeed without punishment. The only people who "prosper" under a system where the state redistributes goods, money, services, benefits, etc to all regardless of input are the people who run the system; the "many" stand in line to purchase their allotment of toilet paper once a month. I read this as "unmarried women are unsuccessful and jealously vindictive," which I have no trouble believing. I'll even cop to being unsuccessful, largely because I've made some dumb career moves. OTOH, I've pretty sure bankrupting families doesn't improve my life, and hey, I could be successful in ten years if I figure out what direction to work toward and the government doesn't punish me for working.

I'm not sure the analogy of the government as "husband-provider" is entirely apt. Wives have responsibilities and obligations to their husbands, but the picture of unmarried women painted here doesn't show them giving anything back. They're more like children; they want Daddy to take care of them and keep them secure without doing anything in return. Not an attitude to be encouraged in anyone older than 10 or 12, but let's watch Hillary Clinton pander to it for the next year to get this "crucial voting bloc" in line.

Not even sure it's a bloc: in 2007 you can't lump all "unmarried women" together. Old maids with cats (it's not right to intentionally deprive a kid of his father...) are different from widows with children, divorced women with children, divorced women with cats, lesbians of assorted coupling status, and "single mothers by choice," which is a varied spectrum (career women getting IVF at 42 have different lives than women who dropped out of high school when they had their first baby at 15). I have zero interested in being "married to government"--government does not provide for me, it impedes me. If I had four kids with different fathers and a GED, I might feel differently.

Ready for some fußball...

I'm looking forward to Packers@Cowboys tomorrow with disaffected interest. Should be a great game, a great QB vs. a QB who could be great himself in a few years, and I expect either team to take on the F-Pats in the Super Bowl (I think I prefer GB to the SB because the Cowboys have already shown they can't play against the F-Pats). I like and dislike various aspects of both teams and their fans about equally...but a GB win makes work less unpleasant on Friday, so GO PACK. :)

I've been waiting to repost this link to IowaHawk's coverage of the Lombardi Cartoon Riots of 2006: Seething Midwest Explodes Over Lombardi Cartoons
But by far the fiercest demonstration took place in Green Bay's Lambeau Shrine parking lot where throngs of Packer faithful burned Texas flags and effigies of Roger Staubach as Lutheran pastors led them in chants of "Those who defame the Vince suck" and "Favre is Great." Many of the frenzied demonstrators were seen ritualistically beating themselves with mozzarella sticks.
Mmm. Mozz sticks.

I've considered making an iconic--and reverential, of course--Lombardi needlepoint. But he's queued up behind a bunch of embroidered Christmas presents.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Anyone can vote in Iowa!

I've been beating myself up for the past year over moving out of Iowa just ahead of a presidential election with no incumbents in the running...but it turns out all I have to do is prove I'm 18 and lie about my residence. I get U.S. mail at my parents' house--you and I know that's not residency but if the Post Office, a branch of the U.S. government, believes I'm Santa

Unfortunately, I get 10 unpaid days off at Christmas so I gotta be in the office January 3 to make rent. Boo-hiss.

My Fred08 T-shirt arrived today. I have a feeling it's all over by the WI primary, but it's stylish enough to wear throughout the spring.

Monday, November 26, 2007

I'm ba-ack.

Other than drastically overestimating the availability of bar food Thursday night, which resulted in a $50 turkey dinner and a maitre'd who did not appreciate my Marvin Harrison throwback jersey, I had a nice weekend. The pictures from Crown Hill Cemetery are especially nice. See them here.

I think I'm caught up on reading after four days with no Internet (and assiduously avoiding political discussion that might alienate road trip buddy), but nothing's really standing out tonight.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

My favorite Thanksgiving poem.

The novelization of "A Peanuts Thanksgiving" isn't literature per se, athough I do enjoy the traditional feast of popcorn, toast, and jelly beans....

James Whitcomb Riley
"When the Frost is on the Punkin"

WHEN the frost is on the punkin and the fodder's in the shock,
And you hear the kyouck and gobble of the struttin' turkey-cock,
And the clackin' of the guineys, and the cluckin' of the hens,
And the rooster's hallylooyer as he tiptoes on the fence;
O, it's then the time a feller is a-feelin' at his best,
With the risin' sun to greet him from a night of peaceful rest,
As he leaves the house, bareheaded, and goes out to feed the stock,
When the frost is on the punkin and the fodder's in the shock.

They's something kindo' harty-like about the atmusfere
When the heat of summer's over and the coolin' fall is here—
Of course we miss the flowers, and the blossoms on the trees,
And the mumble of the hummin'-birds and buzzin' of the bees;
But the air's so appetizin'; and the landscape through the haze
Of a crisp and sunny morning of the airly autumn days
Is a pictur' that no painter has the colorin' to mock—
When the frost is on the punkin and the fodder's in the shock.

The husky, rusty russel of the tossels of the corn,
And the raspin' of the tangled leaves as golden as the morn;
The stubble in the furries—kindo' lonesome-like, but still
A-preachin' sermuns to us of the barns they growed to fill;
The strawstack in the medder, and the reaper in the shed;
The hosses in theyr stalls below—the clover overhead!—
O, it sets my hart a-clickin' like the tickin' of a clock,
When the frost is on the punkin and the fodder's in the shock.

Then your apples all is gethered, and the ones a feller keeps
Is poured around the cellar-floor in red and yaller heaps;
And your cider-makin's over, and your wimmern-folks is through
With theyr mince and apple-butter, and theyr souse and sausage too!...
I don't know how to tell it—but ef such a thing could be
As the angels wantin' boardin', and they'd call around on me—
I'd want to 'commodate 'em—all the whole-indurin' flock—
When the frost is on the punkin and the fodder's in the shock.

More at
The best view of the Indy skyline really is from his grave.

Thanksgiving Links

The Onion breaks down tomorrow's Lions-Packers game.

The first Thanksgiving

Heh, yesterday I saw the headline "2 Turkeys Pardoned by White House" and I actually had to click on it before I realized they meant birds and not some combination of Bonds, Simpson, or Vick.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

"Going Home" for the holidays

The most annoying part about this week is all the people who ask me if I'm "going home" for Thanksgiving and then seem confused when I tell them that my home is in Milwaukee and I will visit my parents at Christmas.

My parents have moved three times since I graduated from college, each time moving to a new town in a different part of Iowa than where I grew up. I'm finally used to their current town, but it's not really "going home" when you need Mapquest.

They also moved to successively smaller houses, to keep any of us from moving back. Now that there are more sons-in-law and grandchildren than spare rooms, guess who is relegated to sleeping in the unfinished unheated storage closet in the basement? (Could be worse: it's the only room in the house where you can't hear a baby scream all night.) It's a nice house, and some of the furniture is familiar, but it's not "home." Especially when I wake up in the morning frozen solid and surrounded by boxes.

I don't know if the assumption is that never-married people (more likely, never-married female people) still belong to their parents, or if most empty-nesters don't change jobs and move, or what exactly the cultural phenomenon is...I don't understand why I have to explain over and over that I have my own "home" here, by myself, in my apartment. But at my age, I shouldn't have to explain.

I'm not staying home for Thanksgiving, either. I'm going to Indianapolis with a friend from work, which will be interesting because I'm not used to traveling with other people.

Depressing start to the day

Chugach, one of the Kodiak bears at the Indy Zoo, was euthanized. He was near the end of an average bear's life and suffering from a debilitating joint disease, but it's sad anyway.

I have this great memory of a redneck flannel-clad moron taunting the Kodiaks to amuse his half-dozen mullet-haired brats; the bears stood up and I swear they were mentally measuring the the moat and the fence and working out a plan to teach the guy (and the tasty mullet morsels) a lesson. I think I was as disappointed as the bears when the moat was insurmountable and they left unscathed...

My other favorite Indy Zoo memory was the day the lions were enjoying a little oral sex. I'm not a pervert, it was just highly entertaining watching how the humans reacted.

*Limbaugh kid voice* "Mommy! Mommy! I wanna see the lions!"
*Mommy voice* "They're over in the--Timmy! We're going to look at the giraffes instead!!"
*kid* "Mooo-ooom!"
*Mom* "Giraffes! Now!"

Heh heh heh.

Further depressing: More than you ever wanted to know about Marvin Harrison's bursa sac.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Every day is Black Cat Day around here...

My brother sent me this.

ROME (Reuters) - Saturday is "black cat day", in Italy, an initiative by an animal rights group to try to stop the killing of thousands of the cats by superstitious citizens convinced they bring bad luck.

Black cats have a bad name in many countries, but nowhere more so than Italy, where a papal edict in the middle ages declared they were instruments of the devil.
I'm not convinced that pope was entirely wrong.

"Excuse me. You weren't planning on using this tonight, were you? It's mine now. Thanks."

Hey, Milwaukee's not so bad!

When did North Charleston become a "city"?

Most dangerous cities in America study: Detroit, St. Louis, Flint, Oakland Calif.; Camden, N.J.; Birmingham, Ala.; North Charleston, S.C.; Memphis, Tenn.; Richmond, Calif.; and Cleveland.

I'm very pleased to not see Milwaukee, although I note they analyze stats from September.

This last graf should immediately follow the list, though:
The study excluded Chicago, Minneapolis, and other Illinois and Minnesota cities because of incomplete data.

I'd not go walking around N. Chas alone at night, but there's parts of St. Paul a woman without a headscarf should avoid during the day.

Ugly, but we'll take it.

The attempt sailed through the uprights with three seconds remaining, capping what Vinatieri – long considered one of the NFL’s most reliable clutch kickers – later called an “interesting” day.

Apparently there was a stiff breeze in the Dome during the first half.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Steyny stuff.

Mark Steyn:
The U.S. Constitution is not only older than France's, Germany's, Italy's or Spain's constitution, it's older than all of them put together.

Which is probably why so many people think Europe is so much better than America, even though "new" doesn't always mean "improved."
Even in a supposedly 50/50 nation, you're struck by the assumed stability underpinning even fundamental disputes. If you go into a bookstore, the display shelves offer a smorgasbord of leftist anti-Bush tracts claiming that he and Cheney have trashed, mangled, gutted, raped and tortured, sliced 'n' diced the Constitution, put it in a cement overcoat and lowered it into the East River.

*snicker* And if any of that were true, the books wouldn't be on the shelves and the authors wouldn't be walking around freely enjoying the royalties. Don't let facts get in the way of a good feel...
But on this Thanksgiving the rest of the world ought to give thanks to American national sovereignty, too. When something terrible and destructive happens – a tsunami hits Indonesia, an earthquake devastates Pakistan – the United States can project itself anywhere on the planet within hours and start saving lives, setting up hospitals and restoring the water supply.

Not much point reminding the self-loathing anti-American left of this, is there? The mere fact that we HAVE technology and resources to share with other nations is an indictment of how horrible we are.

OK. I think I'm grouchy enough to go watch football.

Indiana plays 13!

Indiana gets a bowl game for the first time in no one can remember how long (probably not long after they started playing Purdue for this bucket, which they won again yesterday), after dedicating their season to Coach Terry Hoeppner, who died of brain cancer of the summer.

They make a sweet contrast to a certain other Big 11 team I shall not mention who goes to a bowl game every year they can scrape up six wins even though they don't deserve a bowl game.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

"Our rights come from God, not from government."

That's one of those things I don't understand how people can't/don't/won't understand.

Like pi, or the commutative property.

Indy-MKE musings

A couple months after I moved here last summer, I went down to Indianapolis for a weekend (the IMA had just opened their new textile gallery, which was exciting until I realized the inaugural exhibit was wedding dresses *gag*). Sunday morning I'm in a really good coffee shop with a friend, reading the paper, and there was an article about the exploding Indy crime rate--they were "approaching Milwaukee levels"--they actually compared Indy to Milwaukee--next step Detroit. Same leitmotif: convicted felons released too early, gangs, illegal aliens, "stop snitchin'."

Then, earlier this year, there was a property-tax kerfuffle, with increases 2-4 times larger than the MPS and Gov. Doyle increases up here. City income tax (which is just wrong, IMO) also increased 65%. People were already abandoning the city for Hamilton County in droves...

Queue up the 2007 mayoral election. Democrat machine was expected to re-elect the incumbent who presided over the crime wave and tax increases, as usual; GOP nominee was an underfunded retired Marine unbeholden to other politicians.

Heh. Congratulations, Mayor Ballard. :) Cartoon by Gary Varvel.

Every analysis I've read (here's a sample) is all excited about how the people realized socialism and its adherents ruin lives and voted for change. I really hope they're right, and that it turns into a national trend.

Not a single one mentioned Indiana's new Voter ID law. No buses from precinct to precinct, no ineligible individuals voting under eligible voters' names, no dead voters, fewer registrations from people claiming residence at non-existant addresses...

That has to have had an effect on turnout and results.

Maybe Wisconsin should try it.

Friday, November 16, 2007

Lombardi Trophy Quilt again

On display at Houston, with nearly 400 others. 11th photo from the top, second row.

Don't try to post haiku while drinking.

The haiku are great, but the HTML didn't work. I'm so embarrassed.

Tom Brady supine
Five layers of protection
Can't keep out Freeney

13 sacks, 8 starts
Best rookie right end evah
In the NFL

Four years in a row
Double-digit sacks recorded
Strahan only dreams.

The snap, the dropback,
Immediate blinding pain.
Better Straub than me.

Thank you! I'll be appearing downtown on Sunday! Tip your waitress!

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Valpo, anyone?

If you are, or know, a high school student looking at small private Christian universities for 2008, I have a coupon that will allow you to waive the application fee at Valparaiso University. Drop me an e-mail Real Soon Now; the deadline for application with scholarship consideration is January 15.

They have built a new "information center" (back in the day, we called it a "library") and student union since I was last on campus. And I need to call them about getting tickets in the visitor section when they play at UW-Milwaukee in basketball...

Early caucus date hampers vote fraud.

How sad for them.

Ames, Ia. - Efforts to inspire, encourage and cajole young Iowa voters to attend the 2008 presidential caucuses have lost some - but not all - of their steam with the news that Iowa's marquee event will occur when most college students are away on winter break.

This is a problem?? Are you kidding me?? Actual Iowa college-age voters can register to vote at their permanent address and go to the caucus with their neighbors or parents. If their permanent address is at school, they can toddle back early from wherever they're binge-drinking and resume drinking on the 4th. The Wisconsin and Texas voters quoted in the article can participate in their states' primaries.

And people who are surely educated enough to know better think schools should open just so people who do not live in Iowa can participate in the caucus. Intentionally voting out of your district is fraud, people! (Dan Savage didn't go to jail, but he should have) The caucus workers are supposed to check your voter registration--there is no same-day registration in Iowa, although anyone with a valid registration is allowed to change party affiliation at the door--and if you're not registered in the precinct they're supposed to show you back out.

I was an ISU student in 2000--and Ames was my permanent address, since my parents kicked me out years before--and several precincts held their caucus in one of the engineering buildings. When people walked into the wrong room because they wanted to vote with their friends, they were sent down the hall to the correct precinct.

This all feeds into my general annoyance with unprosecuted fraud from 2000 and 2004, where thousands of students in Milwaukee and Iowa (and probably schools around the nation, those are just the places I was reading newspapers in those years) admitted to pollsters that they illegally voted twice after registering their campus and parents' addresses. Numbers-wise it's on a par with buses going district to district, but since most states don't cross-check voter rolls across county or state lines, it's easier to keep under the radar...

The other part of the article that annoys me is the whining about having to beg people who don't really care about the race to show up. We're all better off when only people who are informed go participate--caucuses, primaries, and general elections. The American people are not served by sheeple checking the box they're told to.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

This vehicle powered by recycled sanctimony.

Car stuff at Michelle Malkin reminds of this conversation I forgot to blog last week...

A friend of mine sent me a link to the "SmartCar" (yes, those are sneer quotes) with raves about how awesomely eco-friendly they are.

I replied with an inquiry as to the MPG rating on the wheelchair-accessible van that would take her to physical therapy three times a week for the rest of her life after she was paralyzed if her "SmartCar" was T-boned in a parking-lot intersection by anything larger than a bicycle.

She pretended not to understand the question.

I then wondered how it was "eco-friendly" to make twice as many trips to the grocery store because the car can't simultaneously hold a week's supply of human food/toilet paper AND a week's supply of cat food/litter.

Apparently it's the thought that counts. Like the no-flow toilets that have to be flushed thrice so no one else has to look at your output.

OTOH, it's probably a logical car for people with no friends, family, or pets.

Anyway. IowaHawk has forgiven me for driving a used Buick that will seat myself and three people who shouldn't be driving in their condition, for the low low price of $9.95, so it's all good.


Iowa State has an all-time record of 0-54-2 against teams ranked among the top six in the Associated Press Poll. The fourth-ranked Jayhawks are 10-0 for the first time since 1899, and remain in the hunt for a BCS bid.

Unrelated, I can't figure out how the F Shawn Haluska gets to play basketball at ISU. OK, new coach, new AD, not his fault his brother's an asshole...I still want to spit.

Also unrelated, the ISU women have signed a home-schooled player for next year. I'm sure the NCAA will find a way to keep her from playing.

You realize, of course, that THIS means WAR.

JammieWearingFool ruins my day.
A worldwide scarcity of malt and hops means price rises are on the way for German beer, both in Germany and in its principal export market, Italy, a national breweries leader warned Tuesday...

Speaking in the southern city of Nuremberg just before the November 14-16 beer trade fair Beviale, he said the world price of aromatic hops had doubled in the past two years and the price of brewers' barley had tripled.

World barley reserves had been run right down as world demand for grain soared, harvests contracted and pressure grew on farmers to grow for energy sales rather than food.

!*#&@ bleeding heads! Curse you, al-Gore!! Look what your lies hath wrought!!!

This is particularly devestating in the midst of rumors that Marvin Harrison's leg injury is more serious than disclosed and likely to end his career, and verification that Dwight Freeney's season is over. I need good beers to sustain me through the dark weeks months years ahead.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Panama City, FL

It's not Lake Michigan, but I suppose they make do.

Didn't have a lot of time for photos but there are more here.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Just back from Florida. Plane was late, freeway was closed, cat is plotting revenge--yup, everything's normal.

Iowa Caucuses same night as Orange Bowl.

And? Turkeys are 6-5 and will get a bowl game somewhere even though they suck moose, but it's not going to be a January game, and ISU's season is done this week (although I'm really proud of them for winning TWO conference games--they really turned it on mid-season). Oh, wait, national media might be devoted to the game instead of the caucus...

At least Hillary won't be telling people how she always loved the Turkeys growing up in Illinois, where she also loved the Yankees.

(Only thing I'm going to say about SNF is that when Al Michaels said it was "crazier than the Iowa caucus" I was still sober enough to laugh. After the wedding we did a lot of shots...)

Friday, November 9, 2007

Why does this stuff always happen right before I go somewhere?

I avoid O'Hare on general principle (I like to get to my destination within 18 hours of my scheduled arrival time...yeah, I'm a prima donna) anyway.
CHICAGO — Nearly two dozen illegal immigrants were arrested Wednesday, accused of using fake security badges to work in critical areas of O'Hare International Airport, including the tarmac, authorities said.

Mexicans and Guatelmalans...this time. I imagine Yemenis and Pakistanis are laying low.
Mary Gurin, 36, of Carpentersville, and Norinye Benitez, 24, of Franklin Park, were each charged with one federal count of harboring illegal immigrants for gain

Wait...that's a crime?!? Can we get some enforcement?!?

Anyway. I managed to successfully avoid Florida for almost 10 years, but this weekend I'm going to a wedding in Panama City (3 p.m. Sunday--why do people hold weddings during football season? Such flagrant disrespect for their loved ones...). Ich trinke, Du trinkst, Wir trinken.

Thursday, November 8, 2007


There was a whole bunch of stuff I wanted to bitch about, but by the time I got home from work I'd forgotten what they were.

Basketball starts tomorrow. My expectations are fairly low, and I'm bummed I'll miss the special anniversary coverage on the Cyclone Television Network.

I'm also irritated by the NCAA. Kid who didn't get paid to play basketball in Germany isn't allowed to play for ISU because of something his teammates did; kid who played for pay in problems getting to play for Texas. They seem to be all sorts of arbitrary...unbecoming in an organization that holds a monopoly on intercollegiate sports. I wonder if the House Ways and Means committee is still threating to revoke their non-profit status.


Wednesday, November 7, 2007

What day is it?

Holiday decorations are up at the, Bayshore Mall.

It still seems really bizarre that I live in Milwaukee.

Secret Service better keep an eye on this one...

While searching for something unrelated, I came across...The White House pets, India, Miss Beazley and Barney, get ready for a Boo-tiful Halloween Wednesday, Oct. 31, 2007, as they sit for photos on the South Lawn of the White House.

Awwwwww. How cute. But let's look at India a little more closely...
I know that look. That cat put in a call to Putin as soon as those stupid humans released her from that silly demeaning costume. They're going to find dead mice laced with polonium on their pillows...

...and it's all George Bush's fault.

This is the first time I've ever seen a polemic liberal refer to the sexist, conformist, lockstep, Stepford, artifical, scary, "McCarthy Witchhunt Era" (also known as the 1950s) as "paradise lost." Usually they're bitching about all that oppression, what with the men working and their wives making babies and Jello salads in the cookie-cutter Hell of Levittown.

I'm amused by the juxtaposition of "America sucks because people are less socially mobile than in Europe" (not sure I believe that) with "America sucks because people are less socially secure than in Europe." (which I believe, since "socially secure" means "gov't welfare supports a middle-class lifestyle") Just come out and say "America sucks and it's all George Bush's fault" without the window dressing.

Mostly, I'm impressed as hell with anyone who gives a book talk and requires the audience to purchase a copy of the book at the door. Especially impressive when the book is bitching about how Americans just can't get ahead. This message is not for people who use the library because books cut into the grocery budget. Nice. (Do married people purchase two copies of books both of them are interested in reading? Besides Bibles...)

As entertaining as I'm sure Krugman's talk will be, I have to clean the cat's "Zen Garden" tonight, which will probably be more edifying.

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Heh. Heh heh.

Somehow yesterday I missed Michelle Malkin reporting Tom Brady's girlfriend in a Marxist-terrorist-thug-glorifying bikini.


Giving back...

OK, my blue-and-white funk has dissipated (it helped that WE Energies blew up a network server at my work yesterday, so I got an--unpaid, sadly--afternoon off to sew), but I'm only strong enough to consume football-free media. Like Thomas Sowell's column on NRO. Today he writes on people I like to call "bleeding heads"--it's not their heart that makes them dangerous, it's the hole between their ears.

Among the many mindless mantras of our time, “making a difference” and “giving back” irritate me like chalk screeching across a blackboard.

I have a friend who eats school lunch with "underprivileged" junior high kids once a month during the school year because she wants to "make a difference." As far as I can tell, the difference she makes is that she feels less guilty about being white and graduating from high school without getting pregnant than she did before she started doing "Lunch Buddies"--not that anyone should feel guilty about either of those things.
Very few people have mastered anything that well beyond their own limited circle of knowledge. Even fewer seem to think far enough ahead to consider that question. Yet hardly a day goes by without news of some uninformed busybodies on one crusade or another.

I miss the good old days of liberals screaming "government out of my bedroom!" instead of "ban incandescent lightbulbs to save the Earth!" Government out of MY bedroom--I need 150 unflickering watts to read without physical pain. Government out of my paycheck would be even better, but I'm willing to start small.
If we are giving back to society at large, in exchange for all that society has made possible for us, then that is a very different ballgame.

Giving back in that sense means acknowledging an obligation to those who went before us and for the institutions and values that enable us to prosper today. But there is very little of this spirit of gratitude and loyalty in many of those who urge us to “give back.”

Indeed, many who repeat the “giving back” mantra would sneer at any such notion as patriotism or any idea that the institutions and values of American society have accomplished worthy things and deserve their support, instead of their undermining.

Sowell doesn't specifically mention the U.S. armed forces, but most of the "give back!" group that wants to blind me whilst redistributing my earnings to people who didn't graduate high school without getting pregnant is vehemently anti-military. Ironically, the military would be the one group of people who truly do "give back" in the way Sowell describes--they put their families on hold and their lives on the line and volunteer to defend the "institutions and values" that have made America great and allow us to prosper.

This segues nicely into...Project Valour-IT is having a fundraising drive this week. All the money goes to getting accessible laptops to soldiers with hand, arm, and eye injuries so they can communicate with their friends and family (and read football media, if it makes them feel better). I distributed some of my earnings there yesterday (in the "Air Force" pool because that's where my dad served). It's not really "giving back"...I just feel grateful for their service and kinda schmucky for not doing more. Especially knowing how many people refuse to support--hell, actually work toward hurting--our armed forces at all.

Sunday, November 4, 2007

If anyone needs me, I'm avoiding all media until the Pro Bowl. Geez.


Was checking if the "newspaper Iowa used to depend on" mentioned native-son Sage Rosenfels at all (when Seneca Wallace, California native, gets a start it's front-page news) and ran across this lovely article about a woman who had two children removed for abuse by age 20 and had the next two--she's 22--removed immediately after birth (disclaimer: my folks work at the hospital where the third baby was born and my dad routinely gets called away from family events to give a newborn their first check-up but he only tells funny stories about cute babies and happy parents). It's really challenging my beliefs about government intrusion into people's reproductive decisions; surely the best way to keep this woman from breaking babies' bones is to keep her from making more victims (of course, "decision" implies a level of cognition about reproduction this woman doesn't seem to have...).

I'd already read a NY Daily News story about an unmarried professional woman who conceived her son with purchased sperm.

Once more, I am struck by how horribly unfair the universe is. Stupid, STUPID worthless women have no trouble finding men to live with them and father multiple babies doomed to repeat their mother's life ("Jaidan Rai"?? Can you put that on a business card or a college application?!?); responsible educated women who support themselves get nothing...and whether or not they take the turkey baster into their own hands at the end of their fertility THEY get charged with ruining society.

And yeah, I'm thinking about myself.

Paulnuts like football?

Ron Paul is running radio spots on Sirius 124, NFL Talk. I wasn't paying full attention until I heard "opposes nation-building overseas" and got confused--what's that to do with Cowboys-Eagles...?

The ads make him sound vaguely reasonable--who doesn't want Congress to stop mandating and regulating every aspect of life instead of sticking to their enumerated powers?--if you overlook the "capitulate to our nation's enemies" bit.

Zombie has some photos of Paulnuts at last weekend's anti-US rally in San Francisco, among the usual excellent and chilling coverage (note the suburban-looking kids waving the Hamas flag). If you look in the background of some of the pictures, you see a guy with an ice cream cart. Capitalism infiltrates the socialist/Communist/Bolshevik rally!

Saturday, November 3, 2007

Oooh, we beat the spread.

No matter what happens tomorrow, it was a good football weekend.

Tomorrow I might need someone to remind me I said that.

Milwaukee Lakefront

More here.

Meant to take pictures of buildings; took a wrong turn somewhere and ended up down by the Summerfest grounds.

Friday, November 2, 2007

"I didn’t start the war, but I was going to finish it."

Obituary of Brigadier General Paul W. Tibbets, one the thousands of people who've done more to bring peace to the planet than al-Gore can even dream of doing. I love that quote.

Back when I was a young skull full of mush I came home from school and told my dad America was bad and wrong for dropping the bombs on Japan in 1945. Took him about ten minutes to explain, in that "disappointed in you" voice no one ever wants to hear, that Grandpa fought the Japanese in the Pacific in 1945 and would have been sent into an invasion of the mainland, which most likely would have killed him and a million other American men. And then both of us would have never been born.

Couldn't argue with logic like that. Still can't argue with logic like that. Imagine what a crappy place the world would be without me. *snicker*

It's incredibly sad that Tibbets refused a funeral and even a headstone because he knew assholes would use them as a meeting place for protests. People have no shame anymore.

Note to self: Make no plans for July 25

Official release date for X-Files movie.

I'm torn between ZOMG ZOMG ZOMG and "they killed off the Lone Gunmen, so what's the point of a movie?"

Take me out to the whine fest

Filed under "call a waaaaaahmbulance":
Barry Bonds would boycott Cooperstown if the Hall of Fame displays his record-breaking home run ball with an asterisk.

That includes skipping his potential induction ceremony.

"I won't go. I won't be part of it," Bonds said in an interview with MSNBC that aired Thursday night. "You can call me, but I won't be there.

I saw this on a soap opera once. We're supposed to run after him, pleading with him to stay and promise to change our heartless ways. Someone's probably already doing it.

"I don't think you can put an asterisk in the game of baseball, and I don't think that the Hall of Fame can accept an asterisk," Bonds said. "You cannot give people the freedom, the right to alter history. You can't do it. There's no such thing as an asterisk in baseball."

History? A baseball is not history, it's an historical artifact, and newsflash: They can be altered (cheap Sandy Burglar joke here), and museums will still purchase them if there is significance in the original or significance in the alteration. If for some reason Cooperstown passes on owning this baseball (they won't), the Smithsonian might take it; if they pass there's a dozen smaller theme museums who'll take it.

Not to mention "altered history" is big business the past few years. Pretty much why I dropped out of school and went back to being a corporate drone--I wanted to work with historical objects and facts, and historians don't do that anymore. They "view the past through a lens" and "re-interpret their significance" via that lens, the lens being feminist, Marxist, African-American, etc. If I'm going to sit around shoveling manure all day, I'm going to get paid decently.

Trying to imagine how a Marxist-feminist historian would view this baseball. It's obviously a symbol of how evil corporate America has kept the proletariat from revolting by distracting them with superficial spectacles, and the branded asterisk is a racist reminder of antebellum slave-holding...that crap writes itself.

Back to the sad part of the story, the part that made me want to blog about it in the first place:
Matt Murphy, a 21-year-old student and construction supervisor from New York, emerged from a scuffle holding the ball. He said he decided to sell it because he couldn't afford to pay the taxes required to keep it.

Something's really wrong with this country when a kid can't keep a free baseball because it's so punatively taxed. Good God.

Thursday, November 1, 2007

Shameless Self-Promotion

The International Quilt Festival opened today in Houston, so I can finally post pictures of the "Journal Quilt" I made that is in one of the special exhibits.


Why, yes, those are Colts hoisting the Lombardi Trophy in Miami. That was the most interesting thing that happened to be in 2007, until the quilt went on display. As usual, I liked it while I was working on it but six weeks later I see all kinds of things I wish I'd done differently.

You can see pictures of good quilts in this year's show on their website. Most of the quilts displayed in Houston this weekend will be in Chicago in April.

Behold the power of blogs

Iowa repeals pumpkin tax after "the story whipsawed around the Internet and drew scads of derisive comments."

Here's what stands out:
"Food and food ingredients are defined as substances that are sold for ingestion or chewing by humans and are consumed for their taste or nutritional value," the release said.
I demand the tax on beer, which is consumed by humans as a source of folate, niacin, magnesium, potassium and niacin, be repealed immediately!