Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Molly Ivins

One of the most courageous columnists in the United States is gone. Molly Ivins spoke up about George Bush while most media denizens were slobbering all over his posturing posterior.

I will certainly miss her clear vision and straight talk. We could do worse than to follow the advice in her last column.

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Monday, January 29, 2007

Winning

The main thing wrong with the Republican discussion of "winning" in Iraq is that there is no set definition of what "win" looks like. If it was getting rid of Saddam, it's done. If it is the big PNAC plan of building another stable democracy in the Middle East, it's lost.

If it is making sectarian violence go away, that is not going to happen.

I want to see each person who claims we can "win" define what win is, and how the resources we have in place will accomplish that. Otherwise, it's time to bring the troops home.

Saturday, January 27, 2007

Wahhhh!

Wahhhh!

The House GOP feels left out! I suspect that no Democrat has held a vote open all night; that no one has been bribed or threatened; that no one has withheld copies of legislation; and that no legislation that has come out of committee has been summarily changed without any discussion.

I can see why the Republicans feel left out. All their favorite tricks have gone by the wayside. Quelle dommage.

Friday, January 26, 2007

Health Options

CNN had an article today on workers who go to work even if they are sick, calling such attendance "presenteeism". The last line was that Democrats wanted to legislate to make businesses give employees at least seven sick days.

Heh. My former employer was pushing to become a billion dollar corporation, and one of our main complaints about them was that they only allowed 6 sick days, and they did not want to permit us to use vacation for sick time. It would be amusing if legislation forced them to give more sick time.

The "health care" options Bush was pushing in his SOTU message were, as usual, ignorant of the reality of poverty, taxing to the middle class, and gifts to his wealthy buddies. It is as if "not enough money to pay for health insurance" is not a concept he can deal with. He would probably be amazed that loaves of bread are sold pre-sliced instead of as whole loaves that the servants then slice.

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Exception?

CNN has an article asking if women should be paid for eggs harvested for stem cell extraction.

My first question is why anyone would trade half their reproductive capacity for fertility treatments. This article cited a British doctor as proposing such a plan. It's highway robbery. A woman should be compensated by getting half the income of any procedure that uses the derivatives of her cells. Yes, paying for this kind of body part is an exception, but the use that such cells will have is also exceptional.

In the US, companies have managed to copyright the cells taken from patients. That is robbery, as well. This kind of thing should be stopped before it becomes a norm for the stem cells from eggs to garner bonanzas for developers while leaving donors out.

Monday, January 22, 2007

Enumerated Rights

It's just amazing how Mr. Bush seems to find appointees who never took basic US History as taught in high schools all over this nation. Take Mr. Gonzales, for example. Last Thursday, while testifying before the Senate Judiciary Committee, he stated that there was no right to Habeas Corpus in the Constitution.

AUGH!

It is for people like him that the states demanded a Bill of Rights when the Constitution was written -- just in case anyone dared to say that certain rights did not belong to the people. Amazing -- it's as if the colonials foresaw the pack of scoundrels appointed by Bush as a real possibility. The Bill of Rights belongs to that group of Constitutional items known as "enumerated rights" -- those written out explicitly so that no one could claim that they were *not* rights. I wish someone would tattoo that on Mr Gonzales's boy parts so he could hold onto principle with some regularity.

The Bush administration has many partisans and followers who are chewing away at the enumerated rights, and pretending that rights not assigned belong to them rather than to the people -- which is, of course, the thing that the Ninth Amendment forbids. Chewing away at the Ninth Amendment is one of their most common recreations. Most of them have enough room for a tattoo of the Ninth Amendment. It gives all rights to the people, or to the states, that are *not* enumerated rights.

Mr. Gonzales is condemned out of his own mouth, because if something is not in the Constitution, by its absence it is in the Ninth Amendment. This is the Catch-22 for Liberty and Individual Rights. Bless the paranoia of the colonials. A bas Abu Gonzales.

Saturday, January 20, 2007

Trends in Spam

The trend in Spam over the last two days has been to headline the e-mail with "Chinese Missile Shoots Down ..." every darned thing except what a Chinese missile recently shot down.

The Chinese destroyed one of their own old satellites. Yes, it was definitely a warning shot. Only a Bush could construe it to be anything else. Only a Bush could be drumming up war on another Middle Eastern front while there are more immediate matters that need attention. No, no, George! That was not a suggestion that you invade China!

Winter

Yes, despite having 50 degree weather into January, we are now having winter. A couple of inches of snow have fallen, and at least two cars have come down the hill just east of my house out of control. One flattened the No Parking sign at the curb of the yard next door. I think they are waiting to give an accident report, because they are still fetched up on the lawn over there.

I am amazed that a mere two inches of snow can bring on such havoc -- or such horrible driving.

Friday, January 19, 2007

Taking the Easy Way

After laboriously adding links for my blogroll, I finally got smart and went into the HTML code for the old blog and grabbed the blogroll links wholesale. Now I can start visiting other web sites from my new page, and think about what other things I want to grab off the old page.

Thursday, January 18, 2007

Move in Progress

OK, I have five sets of archives logs set to edit over here, and the move is coming along nicely, I can see that a lot of my early posts were quite substantial. I earnestly despise the Bush administration in all its parts. At some point last year, however, I seem to have become extremely wiped out. It is not that the Republicans have become less treacherous -- I don't think that any group with such a high disregard of the law can be left to its own devices for even a minute, no less a month.

But this had been a hard year. I hope that things improve.

Archives 10/15/2006 to 01/13/2007

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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: New Spam Headers


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Web/Tech

DATE: 10/15/2006 07:12:43 AM
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BODY:

This morning all my spam headers were about being laid off, about company closings, and about otherwise being unemployed.



A couple of weeks ago, a major company laid off their employees by e-mail.  It is sick to see all this spam with headers designed to upset people into opening their junk mail.  Of course, all of mine landed in my junk folder, and seen in a mass the headers were obvious.  I'm also unemployed already, which makes them ludicrous.  But I feel for the folks who will get this garbage today.  It would be nice if someone could source these spammers so people could send them the tons of real junk they deserve.



Anyone?


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: My First Invitation


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Weblogs

DATE: 10/15/2006 07:29:49 AM
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BODY:

Mimus Pauly of A Mockingbird's Medley will be going on vacation later this month, and he has invited me, your friendly neighborhood scopion, to guest blog in his absence.



Considering the illustrious company he has lined up, I feel flattered, indeed.  So you will see some of my posts appearing in the Medley.  I hope he has a fine vacation, too.  Getting away is so satisfying sometimes.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: No Takeoffs


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 10/15/2006 05:23:57 PM
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BODY:

Hawaii had a couple of sizeable earthquakes in the last day.  The part of the news story that got me was this part:



Airports were functioning despite the power outages, though slowly.




Heraga said that inbound flights were being allowed to land, but outgoing flights were not taking off because the TSA doesn't have enough power to screen passengers.


That just gets me.  The TSA is helpless without x-ray machines and wands.  What a disgrace!  What amazingly poor planning and downright incompetence!



In the 1970's I had to get on a Lufthansa flight that was connecting with an El Al flight during a time of hijacking and terrorsim connected to Arab-Israeli conflict.  The Germans did a patdown of all passengers for their inspection.  No tech, just human inspection.



But of course, the TSA isn't up to the standards of Germany 30 years ago.  Oh no.



It's not that TSA hasn't enough power -- it's that they have too freakin' much and not enough competence. 


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Fun!


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Weblogs

DATE: 10/17/2006 12:05:47 AM
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BODY:

I just made my first post at A Mockingbird's Medley



I'll link to it and not repeat it here, though I may save it somewhere.   


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Another First


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Weblogs

DATE: 10/18/2006 02:51:36 PM
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BODY:

I had to close comments on a particular post I made because comment spammers kept choosing it to dump their fewmets.  Any time I get a post that gets comment spam, I'm going to close it off.  It is just too much of a hassle to clean a post over and over.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Almost the Right Question


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Corruption
CATEGORY: Politics
CATEGORY: War

DATE: 10/19/2006 05:09:57 PM
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BODY:

Today Riverbend made a new post from Iraq.  She discussed how the weight of distress took its toll every time she started to write.  She also discussed the Lancet estimate of Iraqi casualties.  Toward the end, she poses this:

Everyone knows the 'official numbers' about Iraqi deaths as a direct result of the war and occupation are far less than reality (yes- even you war hawks know this, in your minuscule heart of hearts). This latest report is probably closer to the truth than anything that's been published yet. And what about American military deaths? When will someone do a study on the actual number of those? If the Bush administration is lying so vehemently about the number of dead Iraqis, one can only imagine the extent of lying about dead Americans…


I don't think that the military has done anything to cover up deaths.    If they were doing that, web sites that independently record deaths would be hearing from a lot more people who were left off the count, and that just is not happening.  Where I think they are slithering around the truth is in the casualty counts.   If we had a grasp of how many youngsters were maimed and brain damaged as a result of Iraq, I think the howls of fury would be loud and long.  And if the number of youngsters with PTSD were counted, we would find that almost everyone who had been dropped down into Iraq suffered from the sheer randomness of trying to keep order in a place that has become a synonym for random violence.



It's not the dead I worry about.  It's the veterans.  It's the troops who continue to be rotated into a place that is deadly and insane.  Support your troops?  The best way to support them is to donate to Fisher House.  Magnetic ribbons are a way to pat yourself on the back -- donations to Fisher House go to some wounded individual or his family, but they don't show your right-wing self-congratulation. 



The next best way to support the troops is to try to throw the warmongers and contractors out of office.  All of them.  If you live in Ohio, don't hold your breath.  In other places, shun the letter 'R'.


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Mimus Pauly
EMAIL: MockMed@aol.com
IP: 172.163.13.108
URL: http://mimuspauly.blogspot.com/
DATE: 10/21/2006 04:47:44 AM
Even if the Republicans manage to retain control of both congressional houses, they won't be in the clear. They'll still have this civil war in Iraq to contend with, Bush will still be "staying the course," and the next Lancet story dealing with this disaster will have casualty figures even more heinous and outrageous than the current one.

Sooner or later, the truth will come to light. And no matter how hard they try, the Republicans and all the people who continue to endorse this senseless slaughtering in a country that never attacked us won't be able to look away...
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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Scorpio
EMAIL: eccentric_00@hotmail.com
IP: 67.64.42.28
URL: http://scorpio.typepad.com/eccentricity/
DATE: 10/21/2006 10:23:17 AM
Oh, I definitely think that there will be war crimes trials eventually. As I spoke of veterans, so the entire population of Iraq has been living under terror and abuse -- three sided, at least. I can't imagine how bad it is for them people of that country, who mostly did no more than live in a place targeted by the current administration.

Slaughter isn't too strong a term for it.
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: A Nice Question


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Corruption
CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 10/20/2006 12:50:16 PM
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BODY:

I was re-reading the very beginning of Farnham's Freehold by Robert A. Heinlein, which Baen is reprinting this month.  I came across this quote:

Farnham twisted in his chair. "I mean it, Duke. America is the best thing in history, I think, and if those scoundrels kill our country, I want to kill a few of them. Eight side boys. Not less. "



So.  If Heinlein were working on that paragraph today, what "sideboys" would he be considering?  It's a nice question.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Is Riverbend Right?


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CATEGORY: Corruption
CATEGORY: Politics
CATEGORY: Television

DATE: 10/22/2006 08:42:01 PM
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BODY:

There are stories coming out on the web that suggest that the ammunition dump explosion of October 10 killed 300 US troops and contractors and 100 Iraqi nationals.  If that is true, then US news outlets are suppressing information that should, in all honesty, be reported.  Yes, even if it means that Republicans lose radically this election.



Is Riverbend right?  Are they lying to us?  Everyone who would be surprised, raise your hands. 



Right.



[crossposted at Mockingbird's Medley]






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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Lord Patel
EMAIL: myopicgoldfish@btinternet.com
IP: 86.133.224.176
URL: http://www.postmanpatel.blogspot.com
DATE: 10/23/2006 10:33:07 AM
Judging by this video see massive explosion at 4 mins 50 secs
http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-7753921336651131261
Whatever caused THAT explosion (and it was a big muth fucka but not a tactical nuke as the commentary suggests) never mind the fires and explosions for hours there must be heavy casualties at least, and some deaths.

An interesting comparison is the Buncefeild fuel depot that exploded in the UK this year - the devastation it looked like WWIII but as it was the weekend there were no hospitalised casuaties.
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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Scorpio
EMAIL: eccentric_00@hotmail.com
IP: 66.142.228.194
URL: http://scorpio.typepad.com/eccentricity/
DATE: 10/23/2006 12:37:51 PM
CNN claims there were zero casualties here, too. With those rockets and other pyrotechnics randomly firing, that is especially hard to believe.
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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Bryan
EMAIL: bryan@dumka.com
IP: 207.30.118.172
URL: http://whynow.dumka.us/
DATE: 10/23/2006 06:01:11 PM
If everyone was med-evaced to Germany the casualties will take a long time to show up on the war casualties list.

First they will be charged against European Command, because they will be sent to facilities in Germany, and it could take up to three months to show up on the Iraq war list.

This is how the system has always worked, not something new for Iraq.

If they die at a US facility after being transferred from Germany, it takes even longer to appear.

A local Airman didn't show up in the official list for 6 months.

The local figures that are reported are those that die in Iraq, with those that die later reported by the Pentagon after the paperwork gets processed.

The other problem with the ammo dump disaster is that it may take an extended period to identify the remains of anyone nearby. Women and minorities are easier to identify than white males because there are fewer of them.
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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Keith Thompson
EMAIL: kst@mib.org
IP: 132.249.65.157
URL:
DATE: 10/26/2006 05:20:24 PM
The common misuse of the word "casualty" adds to the confusion. The word means "one injured, killed, captured, or missing in action through engagement with an enemy", but it's commonly used to refer only to deaths.

The article says:

Over 300 American troops, including U.S. Army and Marines, CIA agents and U.S. translators were casualties and there also were 165 seriously injured requiring major medical attention and 39 suffering lesser injuries 122 members of the Iraqi armed forces were killed and 90 seriously injured members of same, were also evacuated to the U.S. military hospital at al-Habbaniyah located some 70km west of Baghdad.

which seems to imply 300 American troops killed. If that's really true (and I have no idea whether it is or not), they're not going to be able to cover it up indefinitely.
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PING:
TITLE: Another Iraqi Cover-up?
URL: http://www.rooksrant.com/2006/10/another_iraqi_coverup.php
IP: 216.239.136.21
BLOG NAME: Rook's Rant
DATE: 10/23/2006 12:18:31 AM
TBRNews.org Over 300 American troops, including U.S. Army and Marines, CIA agents and U.S. translators were casualties and there also were 165 seriously injured requiring major medical attention and 39 suffering lesser injuries 122 members of the Iraqi...
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Ready...Hats On!


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: War

DATE: 10/25/2006 03:14:56 PM
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BODY:

Today's subject is one I look upon with wonder -- and with my foil hat at the ready.



The Bushes have purcased over 98,000 acres in Paraguay?



My goodness!  If this is real...the best speculation has it that Paraguay does no do extraditions ... and that the Bushes expect to be charged with war crimes by the Red Cross.  I wonder if, with that many acres, they plan to sublet to Rummy, Condi, Dickie, and the whole crew.  Rumor also has it that some 500 US troops have been sent to Paraguay.  Engineers and laborers?  Seabees in the grand old tradition, to build air strips and infrastructure?



The mind boggles. 


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PING:
TITLE: Rush Limbaugh Verse (Updated)
URL: http://www.madkane.com/madness/2006/10/26/rush-limbaugh-verse/
IP: 216.104.160.84
BLOG NAME: Mad Kane's Political Madness
DATE: 10/26/2006 03:10:15 PM
I usually avoid writing about (or listening to) Rush Limbaugh. But Limbaughs outrageous attack on the ailing Michael J. Fox, followed by his non-apology apology, inspired me to write this pair of poems. First, my Rush haiku:
Limbaughs...
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: How Odd

ALLOW COMMENTS: 2
CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: War

DATE: 10/25/2006 05:19:49 PM
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BODY:

For October 10, the day of the ammunition dump explosion in Iraq, the DoD page of confirmed casualties lists no deaths at all.



I didn't think there was a single day this month that there were no casualties.  How very odd.


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Madison Guy
EMAIL: letterfromhereblog@yahoo.com
IP: 172.190.45.11
URL: http://letterfromhere.blogspot.com/
DATE: 10/27/2006 01:08:49 AM
I wondered at the time how there were so few, if any, reported casualties when the ammo dump went up. You'd think some of that flying ordnance would hit something or somebody. Like you say, how very odd.

Things may get odder yet. Although weâ€(tm)re going down to the wire on Iran and that October Surprise thing, itâ€(tm)s not over till the Fat Man sings. Naval exercises in Persian Gulf on October 31st. No kidding. October surprise as Halloween nightmare? It couldnâ€(tm)t possibly happen, could it? Can you spell LBJ?

http://letterfromhere.blogspot.com/2006/10/october-surprise-as-halloween.html
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: So Which Is It?


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CATEGORY: Humor
CATEGORY: Remembering
CATEGORY: War

DATE: 10/27/2006 01:23:17 PM
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BODY:

George Bush said he would stay the course in Iraq even if his only supporters were Laura and his dog Barney.



So.



Which one of them told him no?


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Donna
EMAIL: dmariemart@aol.com
IP: 65.216.12.130
URL: http://www.dmariemart.wordpress.com
DATE: 10/27/2006 03:35:21 PM
I think Barney has probably abandoned his master. Dogs are smarter than most people. Poor Dubya, his only supporters are likely his mother and wife.
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Voting Machines


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Corruption
CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 10/27/2006 01:32:02 PM
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BODY:

Avedon Carol at The Sideshow reports on a voting machines article at Seeing the Forest.



And she focuses on the important problem -- that a company whose ATM technology is mature has  -- purposefully? -- degraded their product to market a voting machine that is less secure and less competent to provide means of checking its function.  ATMs are not unreliable in any of the ways that voting machines are -- they do not open with hotel bar keys, they do not have chips that can be switched with ones that will skew the figures, they cannot be reset, disabled, and left with no checks on their integrity.



How did cities and states get lured into buying machines that are that incompetently made?


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Bryan
EMAIL: bryan@dumka.com
IP: 207.30.163.153
URL: http://whynow.dumka.us/
DATE: 10/29/2006 11:09:39 AM
There was an old saying in the computer business that you could never get fired for buying IBM. The same applies to Diebold - it has to be a great machine because Diebold is the biggest name in ATMs and they are secure.

Well, Diebold didn't design its voting equipment, they bought a small start-up. They are selling their corporate "good will" and reputation, not this piece of equipment. Financial people know the name and reputation of Diebold, so buying from them was a guarantee of something that didn't exist: a reliable product.
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: What To Do


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Politics
CATEGORY: War

DATE: 10/28/2006 02:08:42 PM
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BODY:

I have just been wondering what I will do if Bush decides to bomb Iran.



Sitting silently won't be right.



I was just reading a Kansas web log, Fighting Cock Flyer, about the buildup of US Naval forces in the Persian Gulf.  The thrust of this article, and the Kos article it points to, is that Bush may be planning an exercise on October 31 that will become a full-scale attack -- and that the forces gathered can potentially do more damage than the bombing of Baghdad did in Iraq.



It is also suggested that this will be a cover to make sure that the elections go to the administration, and that inquiries into irregularities will be suppressed.



So.  Am I going to go stand in the public square with a sign that says "Honk for Impeachment" ?  Or "Die, Cheney, die!"?  Am I going to call my senators once an hour until they get the message that they need to get behind a move to remove the warmakers?



Doing *something* will be necessary.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Goodies


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Courts
CATEGORY: Politics
CATEGORY: Weblogs

DATE: 10/29/2006 11:06:08 AM
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BODY:

Today's rant is posted at A Mockingbird's Medly.



It's about the court decision on the Abu Ghraib photos that was handed down at the end of last week.



I also posted a short bit about the elections and Social Security over there, and about a push poll by the Democratic candidate for Attorney General in Kansas.



See?  I've been busier than I look.  :)


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: By Fiat


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Law

DATE: 11/01/2006 11:15:15 AM
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BODY:

How is it possible for Bush to just change a law with no fanfare and no public discussion?



Public Law 109-364, or the "John Warner Defense Authorization Act of 2007" (H.R.5122) (2), which was signed by the commander in chief on October 17th, 2006, in a private Oval Office ceremony, allows the President to declare a "public emergency" and station troops anywhere in America and take control of state-based National Guard units without the consent of the governor or local authorities, in order to "suppress public disorder."

It looks like the House passed this with no publicity at all.  If I look back on the record of  my  congressman, I see that he insanely voted in favor of this atrocity.  It was passed September 29.  My congressman used to be a Democrat, but lately he has been voting for every oppressive piece of insanity to come before the House -- he also voted in favor of torture.



Ugh.  This sits very badly with me. 



Bush in charge of all troops, and allowed to deploy them in the US.  If you don't find that ominous, there is no hope for you.  One thing this means is that he is getting ready for a Congress that does not grovel for his every whim -- he now has the power to pretty much do anything he wants to do, and the citizens of this country can now be found to be in the wrong on almost every debatable issue.  Demonstrations can become the reason for martial law -- even if the troops fire first and create disorder thereby.



If you aren't worried, you aren't thinking.


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Mimus Pauly
EMAIL: MockMed@aol.com
IP: 152.163.100.204
URL: http://mimuspauly.blogspot.com
DATE: 11/01/2006 09:53:54 PM
I am sooo campaigning against John Warner when he's up for re-election -- assuming he's too stupid to retire. That man's a Marine, and this is the shit he comes up with? He'd look fine standing next to Oliver North...
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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Mad Kane
EMAIL: madkane@madkane.com
IP: 71.255.58.105
URL: http://www.madkane.com
DATE: 11/01/2006 11:51:20 PM
The outrages just keep mounting up, and this one is especially egregious.
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: When You Know


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Courts

DATE: 11/05/2006 03:41:07 AM
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BODY:

When you know, beyond a shadow of a doubt, what a verdict will be before a trial begins, is a fair trial possible?



That is a question the individuals of the Bush administration should keep in mind.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Voting Irregularity Help


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Corruption
CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 11/05/2006 05:05:04 PM
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BODY:

Commenter danjite on Scalzi's Whatever:



Tuesday, everyone keep this number with you:




1-866-OUR-VOTE




"If you see ANYTHING that looks like an irregularity -- step away from the polling place to the legal distance (generally something like 100 feet, but you can look this up), call this number, tell them clearly which polling place you're at and what's going on, and let them know that you need someone there RIGHT NOW. They'll have lawyers *driving around* waiting for this kind of call.




Also, if you're in a place where this is legal (again, look this up), and you have any issues with machine voting, and you have a cellphone with camera, DOCUMENT the problem you're having -- with video if possible, but still shots if not. DO CHECK, however, if this is legal in your state/county/district. It's not everywhere."




(Please repost aggressively)



Crossposted at Mockingbird's Medley.





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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: What a Great Idea!


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 11/06/2006 10:50:34 PM
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BODY:

I think New Hampshire has a wonderful idea!  Banning political robocalls to those on the do-not-call list is wonderful.



I wonder if we could get Kansas to eliminate the use of all autodiallers for those on the list.  My number seems to be a favorite of way too many robots.  I usually find out who the culprits are and start bombarding their executive offices with random nuisance calls -- but it would be so much better if they would just leave me alone!


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Bryan
EMAIL: bryan@dumka.com
IP: 207.30.163.33
URL: http://whynow.dumka.us/
DATE: 11/07/2006 07:19:04 PM
How about a law that made robo-calling of any nature, except by emergency officials, illegal.
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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Scorpio
EMAIL: eccentric_00@hotmail.com
IP: 64.123.236.131
URL: http://scorpio.typepad.com/eccentricity/
DATE: 11/07/2006 11:28:58 PM
My workplace used to do its emergency calling tree via robocall. I suppose one could sign a specific workplace contract making that acceptable even with a law against such calls. My workplace was not staffed by "officials" -- but they did rely on a lot of technology.
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Strange Ballot


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 11/07/2006 04:56:12 PM
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BODY:

I went and voted.  The ballot had contested races for Congress, Governor, Secretary of State, Insurance Commissioner ... and then it had Democrats.  Not a single Republican was running for judge.  No Republican for Board of Education.  Just Democrats.



I was glad to see that there were no peculiar ballot initiatives.  Nothing about declaring anyone a second class citizen.  No strange ways to spend money.  But then, Kansas actually has a balanced budget. 



For Kansas, theoretical Republican hotbed, it was a most peculiar ballot.


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: dragonet2
EMAIL: dragonet@kc.rr.com
IP: 65.26.97.216
URL:
DATE: 11/13/2006 08:43:19 PM
Wowie zowie. Hot the fark did that happen?

Ain't gonna make me move back to Kansas but hey. Progress? (especially getting rid of that Connie bitchwad...)
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Dear Riverbend


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Corruption
CATEGORY: Courts
CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Politics
CATEGORY: War

DATE: 11/07/2006 05:02:52 PM
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BODY:

Dear River --



     Like you, I find the idea of using politics in Iraq to shore up the Bushies appalling and disgusting.  I also have hope that it will no longer work.  Since, like you, I thought it was evident that the trial of Mr. Hussein was anything but fair, the "verdict" was no surprise.  That being the case, I don't think it made much of a political ripple, either.



  I have hope, even with the election evils and frauds perpetrated this year by the Ghastly Old Poops, that there will be some roadblocks put in the way of Mr. Bush and the rest of his cronies.  Oh, the Democrats are not going to suddenly grow a spine, but maybe there will be enough of them to block his more inhumane notions.



Sigh.  Sorry -- that just sort of slipped out.  We should not hope, but rather grit our teeth and carry on.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Dean


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 11/11/2006 11:54:21 AM
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BODY:

Today, Natasha at Pacific Views has a long post on why Dean should (and will!) remain chairman of the DNC.



Dean may be the most intelligent man to stand for office in tens of years.  I will say that after Dean's straight talk and record of accomplishment, it was very disappointing to have to back Kerry against Bush.  Dean has done a masterful job of making the party ready to fight all the myriad Congressional battles that took back the House and Senate.  It would not have happened without his strategy of regrowing the party from the bottom up.



James Carville wants to see him gone.  Whose interests is he representing?  Not those of the thousands of people who have turned the tide for the Democrats.



OK, if Dean were not DNC chairman, perhaps he could become a candidate for President again.  He'd be a great president -- I have no doubt of that.  I would love to see him there.  But somehow, I don't think that's what Carville has in mind.


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Mark H
EMAIL: biomes_@cox.net
IP: 68.1.189.106
URL: http://biomesblog.typepad.com
DATE: 11/20/2006 06:25:17 PM
Dean has done a great job at the DNC. I'd love to have him as a presidential candidate, but I think he's most valuable right where he is.
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Ack!


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Random Events

DATE: 11/17/2006 07:43:33 AM
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BODY:

I have taken almost a week off.  Whether it was the spectacle of immediate 2008 presidential nomination announcements or the series of medical tests doesn't matter.  My head has just been gone.



No, I can't really thinnk about 2008 yet.  I belong to the Clark/Edwards/Dean/Gore axis more than to any other.   I think James Carville should be declared a venerially-infected  Republican  so he can be cheerfully ignored.  Steny Hoyer?  Are they just a bunch of great choosers, or what?



Gah ... I'm going off to hide again.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Pseudo Celebrity Festivities


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Random Events

DATE: 11/18/2006 11:03:47 AM
-----
BODY:

Ah, the fun of it all.  Tom Cruise is marrying Katie Holmes, the mother of his child -- in Italy. 



Well, it figures that nowhere in the USA would this event become a local festival.  But I have some little questions lingering in my mind.  Did they have to bring their own Scientology Shaman with them?  Italy is such a hotbed of Catholics that finding a Scientologist must be a chore.



And what kind of person could *become* a Scientology Shaman?  When they get to talking about the Space Aliens, does anyone ever break out laughing hysterically?  Must be a hard job.



Anyway, pretty soon the only publicity stunts left for the happy pair will include more births and the inevitable divorce.  Underwear with Swarkovsky crystals ....


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Is This a Joke?***


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Corruption
CATEGORY: Economics
CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 11/18/2006 10:32:14 PM
-----
BODY:

Or is someone crazy?  Slavery?  Legal enslaving of Africans? 



I can't think of anything that would be more open to abuse than slavery.  These people must be crazy.  I know -- every person responsible for reinstituting slavery should be compelled to experience it first-hand, don't you think?



[via PNH's Sidelights at Making Light]



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



*** YES.



 


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Teresa Nielsen Hayden
EMAIL: tnh@panix.com
IP: 72.225.217.252
URL: http://nielsenhayden.com/makinglight/
DATE: 11/19/2006 12:53:53 AM
That thing had me going for a bit, too. Eventually I realized that it was an inspired and appallingly accurate parody.
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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Scorpio
EMAIL: eccentric_00@hotmail.com
IP: 66.142.229.250
URL: http://scorpio.typepad.com/eccentricity/
DATE: 11/19/2006 02:11:25 PM
OK -- sometimes massively tasteless jokes look too realistic. Sometimes The Onion looks like straight reporting, too! "Our long national nightmare of peace and prosperity" was especially apt.
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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Rebekah
EMAIL: rpo5289854@ao.com
IP: 64.12.116.11
URL: http://www.eastoforegon.blogspot.com
DATE: 11/19/2006 09:28:55 PM
enjoyed reading your blog!
-----
COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Scorpio
EMAIL: eccentric_00@hotmail.com
IP: 66.141.254.233
URL: http://scorpio.typepad.com/eccentricity/
DATE: 11/20/2006 11:57:41 AM
Thank you!
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Rarely Mentioned


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Economics

DATE: 11/20/2006 12:23:07 PM
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BODY:

One of the largest pieces of national stupidity that the US has allowed is the outsourcing so much steel production.  The US imports from one-quarter to one-half the steel used in this country -- and half the steel that is produced comes from small mills.  The large steel industry of the past just isn't there any more.



Between that and the oil imports we use, some of our most important capacities are actually on loan to us from foreign nations.  The erosion of our abilities has been gradual.



The fall is going to be sudden.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: A Good Idea


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Politics
CATEGORY: War

DATE: 11/21/2006 02:47:27 PM
-----
BODY:

Dave Lindorff at OpEdNews.com has a great idea.  The first thing that a Democratic Congress should do, before any of Pelosi's 100 hours of agenda, is repeal the September 18, 2001 Authorization for Use of Military Force (AUMF), which Bush has cited for almost all his excesses in pursuing his wars -- and which he has used to justify trashing the Constitution.



Getting rid of that would be a useful means of suppressing Bush's all-encompassing usurpation of civil rights, and it would provide the basis of withdrawing from the excesses he plans in the near future.  That would be a Good Thing. 



That would provide some room to concentrate on the other agenda items the Democrats favor.



[via Fightin' Cock Flyer]






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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Anniversary


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Remembering

DATE: 11/22/2006 03:28:11 PM
-----
BODY:

JFK was assassinated on this day when I was a sophomore in high school.  The band director told me as I was coming through the little hall to the classroom.   Sure, if you are old enough to remember, you are old enough to also remember where you were and how you heard.



43 years ago.






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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Bryan
EMAIL: bryan@dumka.com
IP: 207.30.118.175
URL: http://whynow.dumka.us/
DATE: 11/22/2006 04:42:47 PM
On my way to a high school chemistry class.
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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Ron
EMAIL: rvanraaphorst@san.rr.com
IP: 66.27.106.214
URL:
DATE: 11/22/2006 06:12:31 PM
On my way to the Ohio State - Michigan football game with my older brother and mother. The game was cancelled and played the following weekend...
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Happy Thanksgiving


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Food and Drink
CATEGORY: Remembering

DATE: 11/23/2006 05:26:56 PM
-----
BODY:

I hope all of you have a fine holiday.  I took a friend's mom from her nursing home while he got his wife out of hers, and the four of us went out for dinner.  "Three seniors and one adult."  Right.  I was the only adult present, so to speak.  Very disconcerting.



I guess I'm doing what we traditionally did for years -- I had a dinner with one helping of turkey, mashed potatoes, gravy, a biscuit, broccoli with cheese sauce, and carrots.  One cup of coffee and four glasses of water.  Then tonight for dinner I'll have a piece of pie.  The only way to do this holiday and not have it be an evil orgy of gorging is to have one plate at each meal -- period -- and only two meals.  I've really kept to my resolve never to overeat on this or any other holiday.



I hope all of you get to see people you like and do thing you enjoy today.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Bad Choice


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Economics

DATE: 11/24/2006 04:17:40 PM
-----
BODY:

I'm on the Do Not Call List, of course -- most reasonable people either are on it or get on it as soon as they figure out how.  The list has three exceptions.  One, for places where you give out your phone number.  Because of this exception I had to get *rid* of the alarm on my house since the A$$#0!3 Doofus Twits corporation gave our number to five hundred independent dealers to telemarket. 



Political parties can still call.  Sigh, if only all the states were like Rhode Island, forbidding even the exceptions from using robo-calls!  This fall was a nuisance as many autodiallers annoyed us.  I hung up on all of them ASAP.



Last, but hardly least, charities can still call.  Unfortunately, the local sheriffs have outsourced their begging calls to an Indian call center.  Ugh.  The new ploy is for all these nice inhabitants of Bangalore to take firmly Anglo names (Mark, Jim, Steve, Rick) and after introdicing themselves by these unlikely monikers, go into their pitch. 



You'd think the sheriffs would know better.  They don't.  :: *click* ::


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Slidin' Down


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs

DATE: 11/27/2006 10:34:27 PM
-----
BODY:

In the three blocks north of where I live, there are 16 apartments for rent.



This is on a street with 4-unit apartment units.  Usually they are all rented in August because there is a university medical school just six blocks south of us. 



Of course, last year there was a real crime wave in the neighborhood -- about 30 apartments were broken into and robbed in a six week period.  It was bad enough that the police went door to door telling us to lock up and be careful.  At that time my place was inhabited 24 hours a day by someone armed and awake, so I was not terribly worried.



I don't know whether that made people reluctant to rent over here, or whether the landlords suddenly got greedy and jumped the rents a bit too high.  Whatever it is, there are a lot of empty places right now.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Bleah

ALLOW COMMENTS: 2
CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 11/30/2006 02:37:35 PM
-----
BODY:

We are currently getting our first snowfall, following the short ice storm of yesterday.



Bush is still appointing unqualified wingnuts to administration positions.  These are appointments that do not require a vote from Congress.  From the appointments, one gathers that the Decider doesn't think they need any experience or education, either.



This weekend is a local convention.  I'll show up, but I don't plan to stay in the hotel where it's being held. 


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Hilarious


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Books

DATE: 12/01/2006 02:17:41 PM
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BODY:

OK, you have to have an incredibly inventive imagination to write a novel about Progressives in armed globes-with-legs, supported by sharpshooters in hovercraft, taking over the government of New York.



I mean, really!



No matter that it was developed for a gaming scenario, Orson Scott Card has chosen one of the most unlikely concepts.  Progressives ... with hovercraft.  *Sharpshooter* progressives.  Haaaahahaha!



[hat tip: No More Mr. Nice Blog]






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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Scaramouche
EMAIL: scaramouchebog@gmail.com
IP: 68.124.79.216
URL: http://scaramoucheblog.blogspot.com/
DATE: 12/02/2006 05:40:24 PM
Have you seen the hilarious 6th chapter over at Sadly, No! ?

I use to like Card. I loved Ender's Game and reread it recently, but lately his writing (not just his subject matter) has become atrocious.


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Scaramouche
EMAIL: scaramouchebog@gmail.com
IP: 68.124.79.216
URL: http://scaramoucheblog.blogspot.com/
DATE: 12/02/2006 05:41:59 PM
Here is the link: http://sadlyno.com/archives/4465.html
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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Scorpio
EMAIL: eccentric_00@hotmail.com
IP: 65.69.71.199
URL: http://scorpio.typepad.com/eccentricity/
DATE: 12/03/2006 12:04:12 PM
Alvin Maker may be Card's last good work.
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Heinlein Centennial News


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs

DATE: 12/01/2006 02:28:22 PM
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BODY:

"Apollo 11 Astronaut Buzz Aldrin to Appear at Heinlein Centennial



In all of human history, only twelve men have ever set foot on another
planet - our neighbor, Luna, the moon. We are proud to announce that one of
these distinguished gentlemen will be present at the Heinlein Centennial in
July of 2007: Buzz Aldrin, one of the first pair to set foot in lunar soil
with the Apollo 11 mission in July 1969.



As one of its most distinguished members, Dr. Aldrin has kindly consented to
represent the corps of astronauts whose careers, efforts and hardware were
so strongly influenced by Robert Heinlein's realistic and challenging
writings about spaceflight and space exploration in the 1940s and 1950s.
Many of the legions who worked on the Gemini, Mercury and Apollo projects
have credited Heinlein and his colleagues with inspiring them to go into the
field and make fiction into reality; several of the original astronauts, and
many of those who came later, have also acknowledged Heinlein's inspiration
and influence.



Buzz Aldrin joins an already shining list of special Centennial guests,
including NASA Administrator Dr. Michael Griffin, X Prize founder and 2006
Heinlein Prize winner Dr. Peter Diamandis, X Prize pilot Brian Binnie,
science fiction author and posthumous Heinlein collaborator Spider Robinson,
the newest Science Fiction Grand Master award winner (to be presented in May
2007) James E. Gunn, and many more special attendees from science fiction,
literature, and government and commercial spaceflight.



Registration for the Centennial is open, as are rooms in the two host
hotels, the Hyatt Regency Crown Center and the Westin Crown Center, both
part of the downtown Crown Center entertainment complex in Kansas City, Missouri.



Complete information, registration forms and ongoing updates can be found on
the event web site at www.HeinleinCentennial.com.



The Heinlein Centennial is a presentation of Heinlein Centennial, Inc., a
California nonprofit corporation unaffiliated with any other organization or
entity. Inquiries may be directed to Info@HeinleinCentennial.com, or to PO
Box 4313, Citrus Heights CA 95611."


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: And So It Goes


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs

DATE: 12/06/2006 03:16:41 PM
-----
BODY:

I am sorry that I haven't posted anything really interesting lately.



Hunting for a job can be very discouraging.  My hunt has been slow and subject to abrupt discontinuities...possibilities going from enthusiastic to nonexistent with no particular interchanges to create a difference.  I wonder if employers keep changing either their specifications or their plans.  In any case, the hunt has been particularly tedious this time.



I sent in a registration to be a temporary.  I need to talk to the IT branch first, but I may end up doing general things that are almost unclassifiable instead -- that is what happened last time I did temp work with this company. 



I have to start doing something pretty soon.  Sigh.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: The Star


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs

DATE: 12/09/2006 02:54:07 PM
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BODY:

The star of the Administration, Barney, is the feature dog in Barney Cam 5.  I went looking for it about a week ago and it had not yet appeared.  Got to admit, Barney is a captivating dog.  And he improves the image of his owner as nothing else could.  Let's face it, Barney has the greatest charm of any member of Bush's family or administration.



It was also interesting to see who was absent from this year's effort.  Tsk!  I probably shouldn't snark.



If you haven't seen the Barney videos before, do go to www.whitehouse.gov and click on the kid's page.  Watch all the Barney cams in order.  He's one cute dog.



[hat tip: Skippy]


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Over at Mockingbird


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Economics

DATE: 12/10/2006 04:43:46 PM
-----
BODY:

I have written a post called Percenting Ourselves to Death.  I really think that the only solution to the minimum wage problem is to tie the minimum to the Congressional pay scale.  Those Congresscritters make sure their own nests are feathered, and I think that their vigilance should do some good for the least of their constituents, too.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Advertisements


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Weblogs

DATE: 12/13/2006 07:16:59 PM
-----
BODY:

One thing I have started to do habitually.  If an advertisement offends me, I click on it.  Sometimes several times!



I figure this will  cost the offensive ones money without bringing the income to support the outgo.  One blogger complained that people he did not like targeted his site for their ads.  He was encouraging folks to click on those ads for a similar reason.  I never saw one of those he was complaining about, but I took the idea for my own. 



When I visit a site that has ugly ads, I click on them.  Ka-ching!


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Dragging Along


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs

DATE: 12/16/2006 12:48:11 AM
-----
BODY:

The employment search is dragging along.  I found a couple of places that actually wanted the experience I have, and I put in applications for those places.  I also checked back with some of the temporary and contracting companies that I've talked to.



All in all, the end of the year is  getting in the way.  No one wants to start a project the third week in December, as most companies move into their year-end routines.  the company I used to wrok for will go into high gear at the close of business on 12/29 -- and since the first is a Monday, this year they will get a whole two days up on year end processing as the market closes on Friday.  Since they send out year end statements for many 401(k)s and mutual fund accounts, then need to process tax forms for all those accounts while keeping up with the normal daily work load, January is their insane month.



This year I am going to sleep late and think of them, by golly.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: A Waste


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: War

DATE: 12/19/2006 03:16:22 PM
-----
BODY:

Pentagon mulling show of force to Iran.



Well that will be useless.  Why don't they just unzip and start stroking instead?  It would be cheaper, and mean about as much.



The army is in no shape to take on another country.  We have enough bombs to flatten any place in the world, and have had them for almost 50 years.  Whoopee.  That, of course, is contraproductive.  Who'd want to iradiate oilfields, kill thousands ... what would that solve or make better?  Iran is not the country most dangerous to us  in the world.



You have to wonder at any organization that complains it is out of money that then goes on to feckless and useless displays of "might".


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: What Were They Thinking


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Economics
CATEGORY: Religion
CATEGORY: Reproduction

DATE: 12/20/2006 06:11:42 PM
-----
BODY:

I read an article about a survey that surprised researchers,  that concluded 95 percent of Americans surveyed had premarital sex.  What were they thinking?  Women born in the 1940's were maturing sufficiently right about at the time when the birth control pill became available.  Women born in the 1940's were likely at the spearhead of what was called "the sexual revolution."
Just check with the insane Christianist cultists -- about the only thing that really makes chastity a necessity is unwanted pregnancy -- and this is why there is currently an assault not only on abortion and post-coital birth control, but down at the bottom on *all* birth control.  The only way to control women is via disastrous consequences -- and one of the most disastrous in an unplanned pregnancy -- especially in the modern world where a child is likely to impose high costs on the parents in terms of raising and education.



In a rural-based country where a child works on a family enterprise almost as soon as he is able, the economic equation works differently.  In many ways, it is likely that Christianists are still thinking in those terms rather than in the terms of educating and providing for kids in an environment where health care is expensive and a higher education is ruinous.



In any case, it is no surprise that as soon as there was reliable birth control, 95 percent of Americans slipped the leash of enforced chastity.  It stuns me that researchers expected some other result.


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Mimus Pauly
EMAIL: MockMed@aol.com
IP: 172.146.167.241
URL: http://mimuspauly.blogspot.com/
DATE: 12/21/2006 04:52:37 PM
Conservative Christians may likely have conniptions upon learning this. And it will just reinforce their conviction that they are the virtuous ones while the rest of us are too immoral for words -- when they're not buying crystal meth from gay hookers or trolling for underage boys, that is...
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Happy Solstice


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs

DATE: 12/21/2006 05:05:59 PM
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BODY:

After tonight, the sun starts to return.  In odd ways, this year it hasn't really *gone*.  It was over 50 degrees out today, and too hot for my light jacket.  In Kansas.  In December.



I hope that all of you who follow astronomical holidays have a wonderful and relaxing season.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Gasp!


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Economics

DATE: 12/23/2006 10:06:24 PM
-----
BODY:

I got a bill today, and my health insurance this year is 11 dollars a month *less* than it was last year.  I am amazed.  I didn't think the numbers ever went down.   Astonishing.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Christmas


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs

DATE: 12/25/2006 05:22:06 PM
-----
BODY:

The holiday is sliding past.  Soon I shall go put my nose into one of my Christmas gift books and read. 



Our kids, coming along, may hardly be able to spend the way we once did.  And for us, heading into retirement -- I think some of are finding out the contentment of not spending hugely, not demanding hugely, and being happy with what there is.



It feels very odd.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: And Onward


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Economics

DATE: 12/26/2006 02:44:14 PM
-----
BODY:

I actually made a couple of trips to the Great Satan of Big Box Stores in the last two weeks -- mostly at 10:30 PM or 2 AM, because I am not a fan of crowds. 



I suspect that they are praying hard for a big week this week, because they were massively overstocked with small appliances and other kinds of merchandise.  Too many gift packs.  Too much holiday stuff.  Lots of people buy gift cards, and I think that today is another day I'd not go near a retail establishment.  I suspect, however, that such places are holding their breath, hoping that the huge piles of stuff will go out the door.



I noticed that one of the stores actually had an *entire aisle* of coffee machines, plus end caps and spare piles of the same.  Insanity.  I suppose that they will sell eventually, but I will bet that by the end of this week, the aisle of said machines will still be full.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Suicide by Cop


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: War

DATE: 12/27/2006 05:00:26 PM
-----
BODY:

He'd been to Afghanistan.



He had orders for Iraq.



It was too much.



James Emrick Dean, age 28, barricaded himself in a house and threatened to kill himself.  Police tried to get him out, so he took some pot shots that did not injure any of them.  When he showed himself to fire again, a police officer shot and killed him.



He chose the method that a police officer friend calls "suicide by cop".  The technique includes doing things police are likely to shoot you for.  Mr. Dean did those things. 



He is as much an Iraq statistic as someone who actually went there before killing himself or otherwise doing something to end his life.  Iraq has caused many US citizens to kill themselves -- maybe more than any previous war.



It is not surprising.  The reasons we are there frustrate those with both patriotic intentions and the clear ability to reason.  I am so sorry for the use this President has made of our military. 



Rest in peace, Mr. Dean.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Uncomfortable


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: War

DATE: 12/29/2006 04:37:55 PM
-----
BODY:

It is being reported that Saddam Hussein will be executed tonight, which is Saturday morning in Iraq.



The US is sure in a hurry to kill him, and that makes me very uncomfortable.  The process that was used to judge him was so flawed that it was sickening.  Sure, he was a pretty awful excuse for a human being.  I am not sure that this entitles us to be unjust, in a hurry to hang him.



I wonder what tomorrow will be like.  I don't think it will be better.


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: thethinker
EMAIL: theoryofthought@gmail.com
IP: 24.167.85.130
URL: http://theoryofthought.blogspot.com
DATE: 12/29/2006 09:41:47 PM
Perhaps they think that killing him will solve their problems. There is no quick or easy solution for all that's wrong with the world today, not even killing this man.
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Rumbling Out


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs

DATE: 12/31/2006 09:17:00 PM
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BODY:

End of the year.  It snowed in little flurries earlier today, and now we are getting thunder -- likely that 50 degree weather pushing away the ice bits.



I hope that for all of us, the year upcoming is better than the one just past.  It was pretty much a waste for me.  I'd rather make some progress next year.



Be well, be happy, happy New Year.


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Bryan
EMAIL: bryan@dumka.com
IP: 207.30.163.176
URL: http://whynow.dumka.us/
DATE: 12/31/2006 10:49:55 PM
Happy New Year, Scorpio.

You were right about Susie, but she needs a new hosting service.
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Oh Yes, Poor


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Economics

DATE: 01/01/2007 06:22:26 PM
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BODY:

I read John Scalzi's discussion of his year-end statistics.  The most-visited piece he did was called Being Poor.  He skipped a few things, but this is a pretty comprehensive list.



I even did some of them during the time after my first divorce, until I moved to a better paying job where I took home 600.00 a month.  That was better-paying, yes, because my previous one had a take-home of about 450.00 if I didn't spend any of it at work.  Yes, I've been poor.   And I did some of those things.  I did not need toys or any more clothes, and I used the library for my book habit -- but we all have to pay rent and utilities,  so I scrounged.



I went back to school and changed careers, which eventually fixed the persistent poverty, but I still remember *always* looking down as I walked in case there was money on the ground -- and inevitably there was, especially when I was most desperate.  Sometimes it made me believe in magic.  When I drop money, sometimes I leave it there as a remembrance.


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Mimus Pauly
EMAIL: MockMed@aol.com
IP: 172.129.192.63
URL: http://mimuspauly.blogspot.com/
DATE: 01/01/2007 08:56:14 PM
Confession time: I still rely on libraries for most of my books.

And it's a little comforting to know that someone other than me has cried over spilled mac 'n cheese at least once in life. That's hard to explain to those who just don't know.

I don't consider myself poor anymore, but I am usually a few paychecks away from being homeless. And one of the reasons I don't have network or cable TV is because I don't care to see all those stupid-assed ads for $30,000 SUV gas hogs I'll never own, and those fancy cooking shows peppered with ads about how African children are starving to death -- why can't Rachel Ray and that fat prick with ugly rubber shoes go to Ethiopia and whip up some soup and sandwiches? Instead, they're making throwaway dishes so exotic that even the French have never heard of them for fussy and prissy food critics whose sole purpose in life seems to be making poor and desperate working-class people in Kansas and elsewhere vote Republican out of spite. (I had the misfortune of seeing an episode of "Iron Chef" while I was on Christmas vacation. My freakin' God, Scorpio -- no wonder rural people hate the rest of us so much! Baloney and cheese on white bread will always be good enough for me if I'm hungry -- the hell with its texture, color, balance, and ambience! Just thought I'd let you know.)

And some people wonder why I drink...
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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Scorpio
EMAIL: eccentric_00@hotmail.com
IP: 67.64.42.85
URL: http://scorpio.typepad.com/eccentricity/
DATE: 01/02/2007 05:47:27 PM
Yes, I've spent months of my life living on PB&J, soup, rice.

I have spent since April jobless, and while I still have enough to string me along for a bit, I am having to apply for jobs way out of my main area to find *any*thing, and I may yet hit the wall before I do. Yes, I actually had made it far enough out of poverty to manage a whole year unemployed -- but it's going to turn into a crisis if it doesn't change *soon*.
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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: pissed off patricia
EMAIL: nesters@bellsouth.net
IP: 70.146.31.78
URL: http://morning-martini.blogspot.com/
DATE: 01/04/2007 02:41:23 PM
I grew up poor and I'm not talking kinda poor I mean the real thing. Now we are very comfortable but I still pick up a penny when I see one on the ground. It's a reminder to me to take nothing for granted.

On, I think it was my 11th birthday, my parents didn't give me a present, they couldn't afford it. I went somewhere in the car with my mother and when I got out of the car there was a dollar bill on the sidewalk. That was my magic and that was my birthday present from somewhere.

What kind of work do you do and what kind of job are you looking for?
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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Scorpio
EMAIL: eccentric_00@hotmail.com
IP: 67.64.42.85
URL: http://scorpio.typepad.com/eccentricity/
DATE: 01/04/2007 03:42:05 PM
I was a programmer these last 16 years. Cobol, for which almost no one is hiring. I can also do technical writing and proofreading. The Kansas City area went from being a good job market to being a pit some time in the last 8 to 10 years. Sprint made a disaster area of employment here, laying off three to five thousand people. The parent company of the company I last worked for still hires Cobol programmers -- but I don't seem to fit into their corporate culture.

I'm now registered with temporaries, and I've even applied to a government job or two, which I thought would never happen. But I really need to work another 7 or 8 years, and it's getting to be "any port in a storm" time.
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Signing Statements: A Perspective


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Politics
CATEGORY: Rants

DATE: 01/05/2007 07:52:41 AM
-----
BODY:

And so if The Little King adds a signing statement to a voting rights bill saying "This is all moot anyway because I am King and we won't be having any more of these 'election' thingies." everyone will suddenly obey this delusional f**k??





I don't think so.


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: pissed off patricia
EMAIL: nesters@bellsouth.net
IP: 65.8.123.243
URL: http://morning-martini.blogspot.com/
DATE: 01/05/2007 10:17:14 AM
Do you think he might be like way paranoid or something? This is so freakin' bizarre. Guilty people often become super paranoid because they have so much to hide. I think this might be his case as he fears the Dems are coming after his crooked ass.
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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Scorpio
EMAIL: eccentric_00@hotmail.com
IP: 67.64.42.85
URL: http://scorpio.typepad.com/eccentricity/
DATE: 01/05/2007 12:57:59 PM
He's not normal, that is almost certain.
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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: dragonet2
EMAIL: dragonet@kc.rr.com
IP: 65.26.97.216
URL:
DATE: 01/05/2007 11:53:20 PM
Since that's exactly what I think is going to happen ("I'm the emperor and I can't be dis-elected") I despair.

I don't think anyone has the balls to do anything about it, especially our Congress and Senate... nor the Supreme Court. It's supposed to be a tri=partate system of checks and balances, but it isn't now, it's all broken.

However, if the military leadership put their foot down, refused and said 'this is all fucked, you are so done."

but that ain't going to happen either. The ones that could make a difference are too intent on keeping their jobs and pensions. Oh, well.
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Snickering


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Courts
CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 01/07/2007 05:17:56 PM
-----
BODY:

At Captain's Quarters I read how the perfidious Al Gore would not permit the press at lectures he was giving.



I rather look forward to Captin Ed linking to the posts he wrote about how "Mr. Justice" Scalia did  not permit journalistic coverage when he spoke to various groups.  Seems *Scalia* should know the Constitution even better than Al, but let me guess that Captain's Quarters offered no criticism of the most facist "justice".


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Minimum Wage


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Economics
CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 01/10/2007 01:59:25 PM
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BODY:

More important than just moving the minimum wage upward, it would behoove Congress to tie the fortunes of the minimum wage to the raises they keep giving themselves.



That would make it easier to keep the minimum wage in balance, for if there is anything Congress does well, it is looking out for its own income.  And since Congressional income is paid for by citizens, it would be good if those being charged made a sufficient amount to pay the higher wage without being shorted themselves.






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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Big Lie


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Economics

DATE: 01/12/2007 03:41:57 PM
-----
BODY:

Deficit falls to the lowest level in four years only because the Publicans cheat on what is included in the deficit numbers.  No war spending, for example, and that is such a huge cheat the rest of their paring doesn't matter.



They lie.  Over and over.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Iraq Plan


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Politics
CATEGORY: War

DATE: 01/13/2007 05:56:10 PM
-----
BODY:

What's yours?



Mine is that you should follow a Pentagon-devised plan for withdrawing. 



During the time the military wanted a troop increase, Bush lied and lied, claiming that they did not want one.  Now that the decision is that withdrawing is in order, Bush wants to increase troops. 



If there ever was a case of obtuseness bordering on insanity, we have heard it these last six years.  It is time to get out and quit poking at Middle Eastern countries.  The Bush  "legacy" is trash no matter what, so limiting loss of life now becomes the highest priority our military can follow in the absence of intelligence from the White House.


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Bryan
EMAIL: bryan@dumka.com
IP: 207.30.207.11
URL: http://whynow.dumka.us/
DATE: 01/13/2007 07:21:41 PM
The military knows how to execute a strategic withdrawal and we have two carrier groups in the area to provide air cover right now.

You build up a air tanker fleet for refueling and start moving south. The troops push the civilians and contractors ahead of them.

You blow up anything you can't take with you.

It's past time to do this.
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Archives 01/01/2006 to 10/15/2006

AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Fictional George


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 01/01/2006 02:29:38 PM
-----
BODY:

If I were to wish for a New Year's resolution from George Bush, it would be: "I resolve not to bomb, invade, or otherwise make war on anyone without a declaration of war from Congress."



And I'd like a mirror image resolution from each member of Congress: "To impeach or censure the President and his entire cabinet in the event that he bombs, invades, or otherwise goes to war without a declaration from Congress; and that he and his staff likewise be held accountable for violating their oaths of office."



Gee.  That would make for a start toward a great year.


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Avedon
EMAIL: avedon@cix.co.uk
IP: 80.229.133.49
URL: http://sideshow.me.uk
DATE: 01/04/2006 02:04:50 PM
Because they all keep their promises, right?
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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Scorpio
EMAIL: eccentric_00@hotmail.com
IP: 66.142.56.250
URL: http://scorpio.typepad.com/eccentricity/
DATE: 01/04/2006 04:15:03 PM
Oh, right up there with their oaths of office! :)
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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: DBK
EMAIL: DBKfrog@verizon.net
IP: 12.3.164.87
URL: http://frogsdong.blogspot.com
DATE: 01/05/2006 03:33:25 PM
See, the thing is that the president does have some power to make war absent an official declaration, and that is right and proper. However, wars of aggression are not right and proper without considerable defense. Bush has been trying to defend that action for cloing in on three years and has offered numerous defenses, all of which have been thoroughly discredited. People compare Bush's war to Clinton's action in Bosnia, but Bosnia was a defensive measure that stopped a war, not an offensive one that started what could be a permanent war.
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Safer


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Corruption
CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 01/03/2006 05:48:15 PM
-----
BODY:

I have been trying to figure out what kind of person feels safer when the government does not follow the laws of the land.  How can someone feel safe when the President thinks he can declare someone an "enemy combatant" and put them in jail with no ability to see a lawyer?  How can anyone feel secure when he declares that court orders are for someone else, and not for the things he wants to wiretap?  How can anyone trust a government that uses a label of secrecy to cover up its errors, its malice, its violation of the law?



Safer?



I would feel safer if the pack of malefactors who think this way were finally out of office and permanently cutting brush or hiding in bunkers.  No, I don't do spectacular things that should get me one of their "enemy of the state" labels -- I'd just feel safer if they were gone because I have a horrid suspicion that we have not yet seen the extent of hidden "mistakes" by this group -- and I certainly don't want to be one of them.


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Paula Helm Murray
EMAIL: dragonet@kc.rr.com
IP: 65.26.97.216
URL:
DATE: 01/05/2006 07:53:31 PM
So no better headline than the other day, "Abramoff pleads guilty"

Maybe he'll help sink the whole pack of them.
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Nature


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Random Events

DATE: 01/04/2006 04:21:25 PM
-----
BODY:

It is January.  Today, as I went to get something out of my car, I saw four dandelions in full bloom on what's left of the lawn.



One would be a fluke.  Four is a trend. 


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Sara
EMAIL: saraeanderson@gmail.com
IP: 134.121.135.77
URL: http://f-words.blogspot.com
DATE: 01/06/2006 03:06:03 PM
You can thank me. Every year, I hope and hope that winter just won't come. Now my hard work is paying off, as you can see.
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Hate is a Media Value


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Religion

DATE: 01/06/2006 10:18:32 AM
-----
BODY:

I get really tired of seeing news articles about Pat Robertson's latest hateful judgement.  He makes me want to say "It's your God, they're your rules, *you* burn in hell."



His comments about Dover, PA; and the latest comments about Ariel Sharon point out the fact that the media go to him to get a little patch of blackness to liven up the news.



I could do with hearing a lot less of him.  About zero would be the right amount.




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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Annoy


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Law

DATE: 01/11/2006 08:33:16 PM
-----
BODY:

Recent legislation included a part that said people could not use the internet to annoy people anonymously.



I'm not sure that there is a clear demarcation between anonymous and pseudanonymous.



Skippy the Bush Kangaroo, Atrios, Scorpio -- I am sure our mothers would not recognize those names, and yet they refer to a person whose opinions appear on the web.  Those opinions are bound to annoy someone under Pohl's Law, if nothing else.



Pohl's Law states that there is nothing so good that someone, somewhere won't just hate it, and vice versa.  I am sure, as well, that writers like Hairoo of Silflay Hraka, or the authors of the Little Green Thingies (who shall remain linkless) pretty much count as annoying to some.  And one is pseudanonymous, while the other is just -- anonymous.



Don't look for changes soon -- everyone is annoying sometimes, from smileys to the Right Wing, even if it's against the law.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Sorry


CONVERT BREAKS: 0


DATE: 01/14/2006 10:50:17 AM
-----
BODY:

The better part of a week and I have hardly written at all.



The Alito hearings are depressing.  The news articles about it, however, are worse than depressing.  It is maddening to hear that confirmation is inevitable, as if the slaughterhouse door is open and all the Senatorial cows are expected to walk in and get their heads thwacked in an orderly fashion.



Well, we will see if they are the simple cows that the news portrays.  My state is represented by the wingnut's wingnut, Pat Roberts.  Of course he is going to be leading the line for confirmation. 



To me, the most interesting little news item of the week was that Bush has been signing all this legislation into law, but that he has added "P.S. Except when I don't want to" to the  bottom of some 500 pieces of legislation.



The Supreme Court annulled the line item veto during the Clinton administration.  What Bush is doing is nuttier -- he is saying that the law is for everyone but him, in a most  sneaky way.



When do we get rid of this monster and his motor, Cheney?


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Waging War


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Corruption
CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 01/14/2006 04:19:22 PM
-----
BODY:

So now the CIA can use missles to attack other countries.    Peachy.  I didn't think they were included in the formula by which Congress grants the power to wage war.  The insanity grows.



With friends like Bush, does any country need an enemy?  I mean, he claims to be freeing Iraqis while increasing air strikes that kill civilians.  And he claims to be a friend to Pakistan.  Or is it that he just  kills friends while he tortures enemies (or the accidentally nabbed) before he kills them?



Who wants to lay odds on the bombing of Iran, soon?


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Feinstein Bends Over


CONVERT BREAKS: 0


DATE: 01/15/2006 02:22:57 PM
-----
BODY:

Diane Feinstein does not want to filibuster the Alito nomination.



She is not much use as a Democrat.  She sounds defeated before the vote, with her mewling against using a filibuster.  If not now, when?  After Roe is gone?  After Griswold is gone?  When she is sent home to take off her shoes and tie on an apron?


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: erika
EMAIL: yummy-nospam@elfcakes.com
IP: 64.179.88.204
URL: http://www.elfcakes.com/blogg
DATE: 01/23/2006 06:50:06 AM
I completely agree. When are the Dems finally going to stand up and vote accordingly?
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Money/Mouth


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Economics
CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 01/19/2006 05:22:19 PM
-----
BODY:

One of the things companies don't really give us an opportunity to do is "vote" with our money.



Southwestern Bell suddenly dropped its DSL rates to 26 to 29 dollars a month -- and moved all the call centers for service to India.



Now I will be the first to say that the people they have hired there have given adequate service.  This isn't about that.  It's about consulting customers and giving choices.  If I wanted service from a US tech it would cost more.  I used to pay 49.95 for service.  It would be nice if I had the choice to pay 49.95 and have my calls directed to a US call center.



Have the automated voice system ask for one's phone number -- and then depending on billing, route it to the call center one pays for?  But ... but that would be *easy*.  It would let people demonstrate a belief about buying American, even at American wages.



Instead we have no choice at all.   And that irritates  me more than a foreign call center.


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Nighel
EMAIL: nighel@netaddress.com
IP: 203.101.113.2
URL:
DATE: 01/20/2006 09:00:03 AM
Hi,
I am not satisfy with your comments. I believe let it be in any part of the world if we get better services till then it is ok. I am happy with that.or in other way just think we are giving employment from our side to other country.

few days before i had spoke to one of the technichal help desk in India which was routed to Bangalore City. He personaly help me out a lot in the technichal issues of my computer.Even he was very friendly with me.What i believe it depend on the situation you receive.

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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Tactics -vs- Ethics


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Corruption
CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 01/21/2006 12:50:16 PM
-----
BODY:

There are too many suggestions that Democrats must frame a campaign in terms of the "war on terror' in order to win in 2006.



Ethics?  Beliefs?  What do they matter?



To me it seems that we are in more danger of losing our freedom from a corrupt administration and a spineless Congress than from all the Arabs in the Middle East.  It would be nice to see Democrats campaign for oversight, ethics, a decent minimum wage, and reasonable health care.  It would be nasty to see them campaign on the basis of "me too, I am against terror too!"



I wonder what a Libertarian platform would look like.  Would it address issues, or would it go "terra terra terra"? 



My Congressman is a reasonable Democrat.  He votes 95% for the right things.  My Senators are wingnuts.  I hope one of them is running so I can vote accordingly. 


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Thad Enouf
EMAIL: dirtytricks@anonmail.de
IP: 66.227.197.95
URL: http://www.dirtytrix.blogspot.com
DATE: 01/25/2006 12:22:03 PM
You're right on this one. The Republicans are doing exactly what the terrorists want...to remove the liberty that makes this nation great. They're playing right into the hands of the terrorists and when the next attack comes, they'll blame the lack of authoritarian, absolute executive power for the attack, insinuating that Bush has the brain power to actually stop these people when he can barely balance a checkbook.
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Ask Your Conservative Senators


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Courts
CATEGORY: Law
CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 01/23/2006 08:34:16 PM
-----
BODY:
If Samuel Alito upholds the right of the President to do any
unconstitutional thing he pleases, as his writings and previous opinions suggest, will you be voting for him so that spying without a warrant becomes the interpreted law of the land?



Is that what you want for your neighbors and your grandchildren? Think hard before you vote for someone who is likely to permit wiretaps without court orders. Impeachment is so messy.



Conservatives should be against rampant subversion of the Constitution.
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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Donna
EMAIL: dmariemart@aol.com
IP: 67.172.221.156
URL: http://www.wordwhammy.com
DATE: 01/24/2006 08:58:10 PM
"should be" but don't seem to be
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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: A Alexander Stella
EMAIL: stella4ron@yahoo.com
IP: 128.226.37.139
URL: http://hewhoisknownassefton.blogspot.com/2006/01/osama-and-our-president-dumass-botch_20.html
DATE: 01/25/2006 08:08:49 PM
In the beginning, I decided to join the campaign to impeach your "smirking chimp", my "dum'ass botch". As evidence for that, you'll soon be invited to click on a hyperlink.

Before doing so, however, I would like you to read through the rest of this text. In case, you'd like to know, the hyperlink to your blog, specifically, "eccentricity", is found at the third hyperlink on the list below ... ah, please remember, no clicking until AFTER reading the entire text.

Perusing your blog, I believe I arrived at what is a reasonable inference. That is, both you and your readers would welcome news that indicates the campaign to impeach the president is increasing in both vigor and breadth. Ah, you'll find that evidence by clicking on the second enclosed hyperlink.

As for my plan for capturing Osama, again I should like to ask to refrain from clicking on any enclosed hyperlink, until AFTER you've read the entirety of the text.

http://hewhoisknownassefton.blogspot.com/2006/01/osama-and-our-president-dumass-botch_20.html

The hyperlink just above this sentence leads to my game plan. If you've gotten this far on the first read, without clicking on any of the enclosed hyperlinks, congrats!

Whatever the case, remind or prepare, please keep in mind that it's a good bet that everything else to snag bin Ladin has already been tried. I think it's time we tried drawing on one of the few activities Americans do better than any other national group, music and pizza delivery being among those few activities.

http://hewhoisknownassefton.blogspot.com/2006/01/danger-senator-specter-danger.html

oh, yeah, and here's the third hyperlink:

http://www.reachm.com/amstreet/states-writes.htm#KS



toodles
......\
.he who is known as sefton

oh, yes, surely, you've heard about the government "requesting" certain records about internet activity. oh, br'dah! ... cynical and skeptical lil'ole me, I'm smelling a rat in all that. Quite candidly, I have cause to suspect that more than compiling statistics on access to pornographic websites is involved.

oh, yeah, right after Hitler came to power, the German people were assured that, if they were innocent of untoward activity, they would have nothing to worry about ... yeah, right.

Incidentally, the second hyperlink leads to a piece that relates to governmental eavesdropping WITHOUT a warrant.
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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Scorpio
EMAIL: eccentric_00@hotmail.com
IP: 65.66.153.25
URL: http://scorpio.typepad.com/eccentricity/
DATE: 01/26/2006 06:33:04 PM
First make sure Cheney is indicted -- *then* impeach chimpy.
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: How He Figures It


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Corruption
CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 01/25/2006 05:27:31 PM
-----
BODY:

Oooooooh!  In a flash it dawned on me how George Bush figured he was entitled by the constitution to spy on citizens without getting a warrant.



As a matter of fact, the logic he must be using is worthy of Giblets or maybe even The Medium Lobster (but Giblets is my strong favorite).



See, the Ninth Amendment to the Constitution says that rights that are not enumerated are reserved for the states, or for the people.  Now ol' George Bush feels he has a right -- a Guaranteed Right! -- to find out if anyone anywhere is a threat.  Now, just because he sees threats in people handing out peanut butter sandwiches, people who want the wilderness territory left undrilled, four year olds named David Nelson, and people who want to filibuster Alito -- well, none of that matters.  You see, he is one of the people, and so since they are all threatening to him, he has the right to spy on them without tipping off other threatening people, like the FISA court or the US Congress.



It's all right there in the Ninth Amendment.  Really.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: She's So Funny


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Humor

DATE: 01/27/2006 06:43:54 PM
-----
BODY:

Ann Coulter is at it again.  She suggested today that Justice Stevens should be poisoned via a creme brulee.



She picks an odd way to tell everyone she's lactating.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Filibuster


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Courts
CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 01/28/2006 03:46:12 PM
-----
BODY:

If the Democrats don't use it now, the time to use it again will be so far in the future that it might be after the Second American Revolution -- you know, the one where citizens fight to get the Constitution back.



Any Democrat who does not support a filibuster is a Republican, and should get their funding from the party they actually support. 


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Do It Today


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Courts
CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 01/29/2006 02:18:26 PM
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BODY:

This web site, congress.org, will hand-deliver communications to your congressmen and senators for about 5.00.  You can also use the site to e-mail for free.



My Senators are wingnuts, but I still wrote to them about the Alito vote.  We do not need a more imperial executive than we have now.  We don't need a court that will lift expediency over the law.



Contact yours today, no matter how insane they are, and let them know that Alito is a Bad Idea.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: It's All Good


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Politics
CATEGORY: Weblogs

DATE: 02/01/2006 04:05:52 PM
-----
BODY:

Every word that Avedon Carol has at The Sideshow is good.



The likelihood that Bush is lying about every liberal initiative he brings up.



The arrest of Cindy Sheehan.  Alito and civil liberties.  The Rude Pundit on empty gestures.  Marijuana.   SF and race.



One of her notes points to an article where the SOTU is discussed.  I wonder if everyone forgets that to have a Health Savings Account one needs to have money -- money to put aside and not touch.  You know, anyone who has that already has Bush's touted "benefit" -- which is *not* beneficial in the eyes of any sane person who understands the problems of the uninsured.


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: DBK
EMAIL: DBKfrog@verizon.net
IP: 12.3.164.87
URL: http://frogsdong.blogspot.com
DATE: 02/02/2006 02:12:46 PM
Additionally, the Health Savings Accounts shift the burden of paying for health insurance more heavily to the individual, who isn't having any easier time of it than the business, but then again, according to the Bushies business is fluorishing phenomenally well, so they can afford it. If Exxon can make 11.7 billion dollars in one quarter, they can pay their employees' health insurance costs.

Single-payer is the way to go. Universal coverage is the only intelligent or logical answer to the problem. Such a system better protects doctors and citizens. And I am sorry, but my understanding was that this country was founded for the sake of the people, not corporate profits.
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Tornadoes


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Random Events

DATE: 02/03/2006 06:23:21 PM
-----
BODY:

If you are from Kansas, Missouri, Oklahoma -- even North Carolina! -- you have a pretty good idea why tornadoes suddenly chose to land in New Orleans.



FEMA moved trailers there.  Lots and lots of trailers.



It has long been my theory that if all trailers were moved to Nevada, Nevada would then be the tornado center of the nation.  It seems that New Orleans is suggesting that this theory has some validity.



If I were the person working on New Orleans reconstruction, I'd be looking into some nice prefabricated modules that are not trailers to use for temporary housing.  After all, how many kinds of natural disaster does one need in a given state?


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: DBK
EMAIL: DBKfrog@verizon.net
IP: 12.3.164.87
URL: http://frogsdong.blogspot.com
DATE: 02/06/2006 03:01:38 PM
Tornado magnets. Interesting idea.
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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Jodie
EMAIL: opjohnstons@everestkc.net
IP: 67.52.216.48
URL: http://opjohnstons68.blogspot.com
DATE: 02/10/2006 12:32:16 PM
That is too funny! Seriously, it is strange that more tornados are showing up in the East! I think we had better start paying attention to environmental and weather changes before we all are "Darwined Out".
Bush certainly isn't up to the challenge.
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: The I-Wish Department


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Economics
CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 02/04/2006 11:17:33 AM
-----
BODY:

A big entry into the I-Wish Department:  I wish that Bush were honest enough and focused enough to really get this country on the path to independence from oil imports.  Ethanol, methanol, whatever it takes.



I just don't trust him to have the vision to really do it.


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Poechewe
EMAIL: poechewe@sbcglobal.net
IP: 69.105.112.22
URL: http://coldflute.blogspot.com/
DATE: 02/09/2006 12:51:28 AM
We've needed an energy policy for 30 years.

The only promise Bush is capable of keeping are tax cuts for his rich friends. His other promises are just noise coming from the Republican p.r. machine.

There are thousands of people trying to develop alternate energy sources but this country needs a major committment to infrastructure that'll be needed as oil prices climb higher and higher and other energy systems start coming more prominently into play.

I'm not really pessimistic. But it's clear we have the wrong leadership in Washington.
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Kansas


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Random Events

DATE: 02/05/2006 05:51:53 PM
-----
BODY:

Headlines about the state of Kansas make it look monstrously ignorant and regressive.  Headlines, of course, are just the leading edge of news, and follow-ups are in very small type by comparison.



This week, the idiot who wanted to look at clinic records -- a headline-inspiring event -- was turned down by the courts -- a lower case, back pages conclusion.  Kansas idiots make headlines.  Those with good sense and education, who adjudicate and decide what really happens, are footnotes -- even though the footnotes are generally sensible, legal, and respectful of the rights of individuals not to be harrassed by idiots and politicians or religious freaks on a crusade.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Kansas Clinic Records


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Courts
CATEGORY: Weblogs

DATE: 02/08/2006 05:50:05 PM
-----
BODY:

Here is a link to one pretty thorough story about the court decision.



Wow, when Twisted Chick  at Live Journal links to a post, visitors pop right in -- welcome!  And my  thanks to Avedon Carol at The Sideshow as well.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Lame Pit Viper


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Corruption
CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 02/09/2006 04:36:42 PM
-----
BODY:

Bush is no lame duck -- he's a venemous serpent and he's out to poison you.



Unlike Bush's generalized privatization talk of last year, we're now talking detailed numbers. On page 321 of the budget proposal, you see the privatization costs: $24.182 billion in fiscal 2010, $57.429 billion in fiscal 2011 and another $630.533 billion for the five years after that, for a seven-year total of $712.144 billion.




In the first year of private accounts, people would be allowed to divert up to 4 percent of their wages covered by Social Security into what Bush called "voluntary private accounts." The maximum contribution to such accounts would start at $1,100 annually and rise by $100 a year through 2016.



Oh yes -- all his demands to start dismantling Social Security  are sitting in the budget he just sent to Congress.   It's time to start screaming, people.  Or it's time for me to go hunting for more recipes for "Catfood Cookery, Dogfood Delight".



Pretty soon we will be aware that we are all citizens of New Orleans, with everthing we ever had wiped out.



[via The Sideshow]


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Apex


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs

DATE: 02/12/2006 07:17:13 PM
-----
BODY:

Cheney shoots hunting companion.



Oops.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Let the Link Speak


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Corruption
CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 02/16/2006 04:40:59 PM
-----
BODY:

Here Blah3 has the link to the Abu Ghraib show on Australian TV.



There are days when my contempt for this administration rises to the gagging point.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Midwinter Ennui


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Corruption
CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 02/20/2006 04:21:33 PM
-----
BODY:

and Scandal Burnout.  Rising with indignation to the sewer of behavior that this administration calls foreign and domestic policy is distateful at the moment.  I know that there are signs of hope -- the wiretap scandal is maturing about at the pace of Watergate -- and many ordinary folks have said "that's against the law!" with surprise, indicating that it may mature in a similar way.



Cheney just proved he's in a similar category to Ted Kennedy -- able to duck a check for alcohol that would make his conduct provably felonious.   



I want to see this administration held responsible -- really responsible -- for the laws they have broken.  It will take time.  It will take people who hold the law more important than the exceptions that the wealthy build for themselves.


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: IXLNXS
EMAIL: incubus52@comcast.net
IP: 68.34.159.132
URL: http://home.comcast.net/~incubus52/index.html
DATE: 02/20/2006 08:41:34 PM
Wasn't there like one or two mentions of female companions we no longer hear a word about? Wouldn't it be too funny in a wrong sort of way that lies, deciet, decpetion, war profiteering, and the whole ball of wax didn't bring them down, but a good old sex scandal.

Sorry I visit less, but thoughts of you wit today's horrorscope.




The Moon is in Scorpio for most of the day, pushing us into deep emotional territories that can transform our lives. Although Scorpio is a water sign, our sentiments may be difficult to express, for it seems as if others react by trying to fix us even though nothing is wrong. One lesson this intense Moon brings is that feelings need to be felt. If we attempt to deny them, they gain power. Once expressed, however, they can transform into easier and lighter emotions, especially as the Moon moves on into philosophical Sagittarius at 9:38 pm EST.
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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: DBK
EMAIL: DBKfrog@verizon.net
IP: 12.3.164.87
URL: http://frogsdong.blogspot.com
DATE: 02/21/2006 11:59:54 AM
Actually, nobody seems to have heard a word from the Ambassadorinatrix to Switzerland, the person closest to the shooting who was not either the shooter or the shootee, since the day after the shooting.

I seriously doubt any sort of affair was going on at the abbatoir. Whittington is 78 and Cheney has had 4 heart attacks (making it tough to raise the flag and also very dangerous to use Viagra).
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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Junior
EMAIL: neo@hotmail.com
IP: 196.40.31.138
URL: http://thebanc.org/furniture/bed-bugs.html
DATE: 03/06/2006 11:44:10 AM
I have loved your site for its useful and funny content and simple design.
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Certified Spam


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Web/Tech

DATE: 02/22/2006 05:19:30 PM
-----
BODY:

There is a story out on the net that AOL and Yahoo plan to charge mass mailing companies perhaps half a cent a mail, and then send said mail past their spam filters as "Certified Mail".



Certified?  Certified as unfiltered.



Certified spam.



It is paid trash that lands in one's mailbox.  It is too bad that electronic selling seems so worthwhile that many, many pieces of crap land in every mailbox daily.  It's too bad that kids get porn offers and viagra offers long before they even have a clue what sex is.  And it's even too-badder that ISPs want to give business any shelter from spam filters at all.


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: DBK
EMAIL: DBKfrog@verizon.net
IP: 12.3.164.87
URL: http://frogsdong.blogspot.com
DATE: 02/23/2006 02:35:45 PM
I can't begin to tell you how happy I am about that. Because I will then block any email from those domains, tell everyone I know who uses those domains that I can't accept mail from them anymore because of the spam, and then urge people everywhere to block mail from those domains in order to reduce spam, and urge everyone to stop using those ISPs because of the spam. Hang them on their own petard!
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Get Out the Hat


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Random Events

DATE: 02/24/2006 01:02:20 PM
-----
BODY:

I am going to put on my tinfoil hat and tell you what I read today. 



In the comments at Seeing the Forest, the_cosmic_fluke wrote "google pagosa springs chemtrails", so I did.  I choose this entry to read.  It's pretty long.  I'll aslo say it strikes me right on the belief button, because I have often watched the sky trails over Kansas City, seeing their persistence and pattern.



One of the strangest things about 9/11 was the absence of planes in the sky after the grounding.  During the days there was no flying, temperatures on the ground rose an average of 1 degree, supposedly because there were no contrails reflecting sunlight.



And yes, among the things the author discusses, I can well believe that biological experiments are out of control.  I can theorize that global warming denial is based in secret  experimentation to avert the same.  I can believe that the phenomenon of the microburst is due to atmospheric experiments, and that Gulf War syndrome was partly the result of anthrax immunizations.



I do believe that it was John Brunner who often had his characters pray that we could be protected from our own mad cleverness.  I'm afraid the prayer has gone unanswered, but it was the right one to pray. 



Go ahead -- put on your tinfoil hats and  read this stuff -- it's closer to home than a horror film.


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Hedley Lamarr
EMAIL: aWol@whitehouse.gov
IP: 209.145.87.83
URL:
DATE: 03/06/2006 08:04:49 AM
When these trails first appeared many decades ago, we called them con-trials, where to con- comes from condensation.

What are chemtrails??
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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Scorpio
EMAIL: eccentric_00@hotmail.com
IP: 172.16.58.84
URL: http://scorpio.typepad.com/eccentricity/
DATE: 03/06/2006 09:37:19 AM
Contrails disappear. Chemtrails persist and cause clouds or haze to form. The residue of chemtrails has aluminum and other things in it. The really tinfoil-hat claims include mold spores, bacteria, viruses, and other contaminants.
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Octavia Butler


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Books

DATE: 02/26/2006 04:10:25 PM
-----
BODY:

Octavia Butler, wonderful novelist, has died at the too-young age of 58.



I still remember running into one of her Patternmaster books, and then searching quickly for everything else she had written.  At that time it was four books.  And I've read each work she has done since that time.



Many years ago I went to a convention in Springfield, MO, simply because she was the guest, and had a wonderful time talking to her and asking her all the questions I wanted to ask.   I will remember it always as one of the best times I have had at a convention.  When I wonder why I go to them, I remember times  like that.



I am sorry that there will be no more Butler books.  There were never enough.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Twice, No Less!


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Sports

DATE: 03/01/2006 01:52:55 PM
-----
BODY:



You Passed 8th Grade Math
Congratulations, you got 10/10 correct!



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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Jodie
EMAIL: opjohnstons@everestkc.net
IP: 67.52.216.48
URL: http://opjohnstons68.blogspot.com
DATE: 03/03/2006 02:19:51 PM
Yikes! I started having trouble helping my kids in about 5th grade with math. Nothing is done the same way as when I was taught. Makes you feel dumb!
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Why Bush is Responsible


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Corruption
CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 03/02/2006 07:11:17 PM
-----
BODY:

The Corps of Engineers is likely in charge of levees, since they are responsible for all waterways in the US.



They have 120 days to rebuild them and make sure New Orleans survives.



Anyone think that the so-called "Commander in Chief" is going to give that order?  Anyone?


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: lise
EMAIL: lboucher6396@rogers.com
IP: 69.199.137.3
URL:
DATE: 03/05/2006 08:53:41 AM
Words don't mean anything. Actions speak for themselves. Quick actions would have been better for the people who suffered loss or life ,lovedm ones and personal and mental security. I deplore hypocrites who talk but do not act. I know it is not always within our monetary or who knows whatever other quirk keeping us from acting but when a life is at risk it is now that they need help not tomorrow or the next day that is convenient for me. I deplore the state of affaires in the present in world situations where some delude themselves in thinking it isn't here therefore it can't be true. Wake-up people! Not every human being,child , woman or man and I must extend my worries to include our animal kingdom because all have basic health and mental needs to maintain healthy relationships. I find it sad that people aren't more aware of otere people's needs for acceptance be it at the sexual orientation, status in life, and ethnic origines. We all have the same needs and aspirations and I strive to be a source of inspiration to all that start a conversation with me. I find the life is precious and any goos I can do to help one feel positive about their self worth is my contribution to life and my legacy to this world.
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: I Keep Wondering


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs

DATE: 03/05/2006 03:16:21 PM
-----
BODY:

It's in my head and it won't get out -- one of the main things that preserves parts of the Atlantic coastline are the jettys -- long rock piers that go out into the ocean to break up the impact of waves as they rush inshore.  When I was a kid, a most common sight was of large flatbed trucks carrying two or three gigantic rocks to add to the jettys and seawalls that were being built. 



For miles, driving down the New Jersey coast, the ocean is hidden by enormous seawalls made of huge rocks held together with concrete.  Out on the beaches, the lines between properties are often marked by long jetties of rock, some held by concrete and others, weighing tons, just laid in place.



What would these kinds of constructions do for New Orleans?   For Biloxi?  For other gulf  states and cities?   I suspect that we need to build some and find out now.  Another storm season like the last will probably see complete destruction of southern communities if nothing effective is done.


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Bryan
EMAIL: bryan@dumka.com
IP: 209.26.26.143
URL: http://wnbld.blogspot.com/
DATE: 03/06/2006 12:21:43 PM
They've tried them and they tend to increase pollution and cause point erosion rather than broad erosion.

The problem is that instead of a broad coast you have the swirl in the Gulf of Mexico. The swirl help to clean the bayous, but the seawalls disrupt the flow which leaves stagnent areas that kill the shellfish.

The natural wetlands are the best defense. The canal to the Gulf also needs to be filled as it helped to direct waterflow against the floodwalls.

The seawalls tend to increase the velocity of the water flow like a nozzle on a hose. The levees have already reduced the amount of natural sediments that would have replenished the wetlands.
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Imitation


CONVERT BREAKS: 0


DATE: 03/06/2006 05:26:51 PM
-----
BODY:

Let's take a page today from BAGnewsNotes and present a picture that was on CNN online this afternoon:



Scaleok_2





 





Let's examine this the way Bag would -- or maybe with a more jaundiced eye.





The first thing that jumps out is the silhouette -- a woman in the dark.  The second thing that the eye moves to is the symbol for woman in gold, hoisted high like a trophy , or like a severed head.



And what has raised it like a trophy?



Look at the phallic objects, weighty enough to overshadow the feminine.



Just fraught, isn't it?




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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: To Fight Terror


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 03/10/2006 04:54:18 PM
-----
BODY:

The only thing you can do is cower in your house and do anything the Preznit proposes -- hire Arab governments to run ports.  Encourage Arab investment in US companies.  Support ties with even those who are linked to terrorism.



Why?

Because the Preznit said so
.



Really.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Monoply


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Economics

DATE: 03/11/2006 04:25:19 PM
-----
BODY:

Remember when the Bell Telephone Company was broken into seven regional phone companies plus AT&T? 



Have you noticed that in this age of regression, they seem to be recoalescing, despite the fact that the breakup was court-ordered?



Yes, AT&T, which owns Southwestern Bell already, wants to acquire Southeastern Bell as well.  Atlantic Bell and the Bell company north of it merged in the 1980's.  Watch them consume each other!  With enough Federal ignoring, the Bells may once again become monolithic -- but without the 7% profit cap that the old Bell Telephone Company had.  Just watch.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Ex Post Facto


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Corruption
CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 03/11/2006 05:11:37 PM
-----
BODY:

You know, no matter what laws the Republican Congress shove through to pretend that everything is OK, it was still against the law for the administration to order wiretaps without a court order.



No ex post facto law is going to lessen the crime or the guilt -- and don't think that most adults in this country don't know that.  Pooping outside the catbox and then trying to cover it up is futile, whether cats or elephants are making the mess.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Failed Diagnosis


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 03/14/2006 04:26:04 PM
-----
BODY:

Frist is just so bad at diagnosis.  Feingold is not only quite sane, he is accurate in his assessment of Bush.



You know a person is on point if Frist is outraged.  He's allergic to truth -- a perfect Republican candidate in the tradition of his liar-in-chief.



No matter how many ex post facto laws Bush's supporters introduce, the flat fact is that he not only broke the law, he admitted it of his own free will.



[via Philosoraptor]


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Disgrace


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Corruption
CATEGORY: Law
CATEGORY: War

DATE: 03/15/2006 04:47:22 PM
-----
BODY:

Salon has many more Abu Ghraib photos and videos posted today.



Against this backdrop of renewed scrutiny, we think the CID photo archive and related materials we present today merit close examination. In "The Abu Ghraib Files," Salon presents an annotated, chronological version of these crucial CID investigative documents -- the most comprehensive public record to date of the military's attempt to analyze the photos from the prison. All 279 photos and 19 videos are reproduced here, along with the original captions created by Army investigators. They have been grouped into chapters that follow the CID's timeline, and each chapter has been narrated with the facts and findings of the Taguba, Schlesinger, Fay-Jones and other Pentagon investigations (see sidebar).



Will the higher command escape?  Will they end up in the Hague, because we, to our everlasting shame, do nothing?  We'll see.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: You Can't Get Fooled Again


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 03/16/2006 04:48:59 PM
-----
BODY:

"Fool me once, shame on you.  Fool me twice, shame on me."



George Bush is determined to go to war with Iran. 



He told you so today, proclaiming his desire for preemptive war.  I suspect that he means to preempt Congress as well, claimimg that his "war on terror" is a license to attack anyone on rumors, forged documents, hearsay, or any other thing that strikes his fancy.



Actually, the greatest danger to democracy and to the United States is George Bush himself.



A certain number of jingoists and warmongers will cheer him on loudly.  Too many of these crazy people own the means of communication or have major access thereto.  An election is coming, and the best thing you can do for the future of this country is vote every last warmongering son out of office.



Really


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Steve M.
EMAIL: nomoremister@hotmail.com
IP: 170.171.1.5
URL: http://nomoremister.blogspot.com
DATE: 03/16/2006 06:08:47 PM
"Fool me once shame on.. shame on you... eh.. um.. a fooled man can't get fooled again."

(video clip: http://www.depresident.com/bush-fool-me-once-video.asp)
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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Steve M.
EMAIL: nomoremister@hotmail.com
IP: 170.171.1.5
URL: http://nomoremister.blogspot.com
DATE: 03/16/2006 06:10:06 PM
Clip off the parenthesis at the end if you want to see that:

http://www.depresident.com/bush-fool-me-once-video.asp
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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Scaramouche
EMAIL: scaramouchebog@gmail.com
IP: 68.122.0.108
URL: http://scaramoucheblog.blogspot.com/
DATE: 03/16/2006 10:35:35 PM
The only way I can see that we go to war in Iran is in a nuclear-bunker-busting bombing sort of way.

I guess they're hoping, or planning, that the Israelis might launch an attack conventially to get the ball rolling.

But just where in hell do they think they'll the military manpower to take on Iran while they have military committments spread all over the globe?


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Sauce for the Gander


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Corruption
CATEGORY: Current Affairs

DATE: 03/17/2006 08:20:16 PM
-----
BODY:

*Viagra Death Toll Rises: over 5640 men have died.



So why is CNN headlining this? 



Two more women die after taking abortion pill .

"The bottom line is that this is not about the abortion debate. This is about the safety, health and welfare of women," Patterson said.


...


At least seven U.S. women have died after taking the drugs since 2000. 



Have you noticed how these guys are not interested in the safety, health and welfare of men, but only about boners, and how the results of such boners should *only* favor men?  The so-called "Roe-vs-Wade for men" is no such thing.  It's about the control of women via money, as always -- and as the morning-after pill "debate" * is about forcing women to bear children whether or not they want to, whether or not they  can.



OK, so maybe it's time for women to have concern for the health, welfare, and safety of men and ban the so-called impotence drugs.  After all, the inability to get a hardon is obviously the means a body chooses to tell them something is wrong, and forcing that body to perform is often lethal.



Seven deaths versus 5640, and only two years difference in the timeframe?  Gimmie a break.



_____________________
*expanded for coherence


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Donna
EMAIL: dmariemart@aol.com
IP: 67.172.221.156
URL: http://www.wordwhammy.com
DATE: 03/19/2006 02:34:24 PM
Men giving up woodies...hahahhhaaHAH!They'd rather die. Apparently.
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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Kehaar
EMAIL: kehaar@silflayhraka.com
IP: 65.169.171.66
URL: http://www.silflayhraka.com
DATE: 03/23/2006 02:44:31 PM
At least the men probably died happy. I mean, what man doesn't want to go with an erection?
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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: What?
EMAIL: nospamplease@thankyou.com
IP: 68.121.44.198
URL:
DATE: 03/23/2006 10:37:14 PM
"Have you noticed how these guys are not interested in the safety, health and welfare of men, but only about boners, and how the results of such boners should *only* favor men?"

Wait, wait, wait. If "these guys" are only interested in the safety of men, why would they underreport the dangers of Viagra? And who says the results of such boners should only favor men? How would they even do that? Give Viagra only to gay guys?

[NOT interested in the safety of men, rather than *only* -- S.]

Obviously the people hyping the "dangers" of RU-486 have an agenda--they're against abortion, not against dangers to women's health. The fight for abortion rights isn't men-vs-women. American men are actually slightly more likely than American women to support the right to an abortion. This post is just feel-good, preaching-to-the-choir sanctimony.

[Nah. It's about the fact that anti-abortion slime will argue protecting sweet little women while ignoring the preventible deaths of men that don't suit their agenda -- S.]

Did anyone else notice that the link to the "5,640 deaths" claim is to some spam shilling a kind of phony alternative viagra, posted in 2003 to a forum about documentation for the computer software Samba?

[Here is a link to 522 deaths in the first year on webMD http://www.webmd.com/content/article/22/1728_55700?src=Inktomi&condition=Home%20&%20Top%20Stories
-- the figure in the web log link above is likely quite accurate, even if you don't like its source -- especially since JAMA reported over 5000 deaths by 2003 http://www.youngagain.com/viagra.html -- S.]
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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: IXLNXS
EMAIL: incubus52@comcast.net
IP: 68.34.159.132
URL: http://home.comcast.net/~incubus52/index.html
DATE: 03/25/2006 05:23:05 AM
a little off topic but.....

ever hear about the connection between eyesight and the hardon?

How some men see red or blue after taking Viagra because the neural pathways are somehow related.

Which brings to mind the old adage, "Love is blind." Something we all already knew I'm sure but it's interesting to see it displayed as a side effect of a medication that helps guys get a boner.
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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Michael Bains
EMAIL: bainsmac@gmail.com
IP: 69.171.39.217
URL: http://sillyhumans.blogspot.com
DATE: 03/27/2006 08:23:38 PM
The bottom-line on Viagracrap: When you can't get wood, it's like ulcers; psychologically exacerbated. That doesn't mean it's not a physiological problem which can be alleviated by meds. The drugs just temporarily obviate the need to to work it out with one's partner, much less one's self.

Nice post. I wasn't aware there were anywhere near that many (even the smaller #) of deaths caused by that garbage.

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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: What?
EMAIL: nospamplease@thankyou.com
IP: 68.121.44.198
URL:
DATE: 03/29/2006 07:59:21 AM
Mea culpa. I mixed up what you said about "not interested in the safety of men", which I get is ironic exaggeration anyway.

I'm still confused about the "results" of those boners only favoring men, though.

[OK, let's see if I can clarify this. Viagra is so that men can have sex even when their bodies say no. The so-called Roe for men is so that they can force women who decide not to abort into sole support of their offspring. Both these things are connected to making the world totally safe for men. Women now are not only due to get hit on by the previously incapable, but encouraged to keep offspring -- and sometimes now legally mandated to do so -- while no one but she pays for it in any way?? Not only no, but I expect SD to become depopulated by rational females. --S]

I already knew about the "danger" of Viagra. (That eyesight business that IXLNXS mentioned, though, that's fascinating). I didn't say those figures were wrong, just hilariously sourced. It would be wrong, though, to hype this "danger". 500 deaths in a year for something used by so many old dudes is nothing. A really exciting episode of Matlock will cause 500 deaths. Heck, go look up how many deaths aspirin, acetaminophen, and ibuprofen cause each year. The fundies ignored those dangers too.

[I merely use it to point to the obscene prating of men who want to "protect the lil woman" by forcing pregnancy upon her. --S]

Just to be clear, I agree with your point that the (very small) risk of fatal infection that was being reported is being way blown out of proportion by the anti-abortion crazies, obviously to incite fear. They do that with sex and VD, too. Let's all point out that it wasn't even RU-486 per se that was associated with those infections, but the unapproved technique of taking the second course of pills vaginally. Well, (i) swallow the second course, and (ii) follow up better to catch any of these rare infections. Go away, fundamentalist crazies.

I get that you're making a joking point about the hypocrisy of the anti-abortion types' faux concern for women. I also stand by my claim that you set up some kind of false implication that the abortion issue is men-against-women. What does so-called Roe for men have to do with this? The fundamentalists hate that too. And Viagra? The fundamentalists want to control boners, gay and straight, not just wombs. They used to tell us we'd go blind if we touched our own boners. They're probably passing around a dangers-of-Viagra email right now. They won't have to divide us to conquer, though, because you're doing it for them.

God, I hate being the lame, uptight one. I like funny, I like sarcastic. I just want more funny-cuz-it's-true, less funny-cuz-it-makes-me-feel-superior. And why do you seem so contemptuous towards boners? Are you sure that's the enlightened stance?

In conclusion, boner.

[I'm merely in contempt of those who want men to have all the cards -- pharma-fun and no responsibility to pay as much as the incubators shall for offspring they engender. -- S]
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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: What?
EMAIL: nospamplease@thankyou.com
IP: 68.121.44.198
URL:
DATE: 03/29/2006 08:42:21 AM
I don't want to imply that Viagra actually causes 500 deaths a year. That's probably not even close to true.

That WebMD article says that there were 522 deaths among men taking Viagra in the first year on the market; it's not clear if this is higher than one would get if they weren't taking Viagra. It might be higher. It might not. The article has a scary headline, but the text is actually reassuring. I'm surprised they didn't establish a risk. Remember, this is a drug that inspires lots of suspicion, and is associated with, um, taxing physical activity.

The youngagain.com article is on a website that sells dubious nutritional supplements like UltraMan MultiVitamins and Fat Trapper. Oh look, here's the EZ DETECT Colon Cancer, Ulcer Test on sale for $8.95. Again, there's a scary headline, but at the very end the article reveals that the 5,640 deaths are basically all the reported deaths ever among Viagra patients (a large, older, high-risk population), as of July 2002. That's pretty different from having 5,640 deaths caused by Viagra.
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Ignorance is Bliss: the Missionary Version


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Law
CATEGORY: Politics
CATEGORY: Religion

DATE: 03/25/2006 09:49:12 PM
-----
BODY:

In the Taliban -vs- AmTaliban state of the world, it comes as no suprise that Sharia law includes the death penalty for Moslems who convert to another religion.



Clerics in Afghanistan are demanding that the government back off from pressuring them about Abdul Rahman, the man accused of apostasy under Islamic law.  He is being threatened with a death sentence, and many clerics are vocal about the fact that this is the penalty for converting to Christianity.



Bet that Baptists and many Fundamentalist sects didn't realize that conversion was against Sharia law -- otherwise they would not sit by nodding and smiling when Iraqi clerics demanded that the same be incorporated into their law.  I suspect that seducing toward apostasy is also a crime.  Maybe they'd better find out.  :)


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Bryan
EMAIL: bryan@dumka.com
IP: 209.26.28.25
URL: http://whynow.dumka.us/
DATE: 03/27/2006 08:49:45 PM
Regarding missionaries, the best they can hope for is expulsion. Normally they just disappear.

It is a major crime to show disrespect for Islam, and that's what conversion is all about.
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: The Other Shoe


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs

DATE: 03/30/2006 08:24:46 AM
-----
BODY:

Jill Carroll was released from captivity in Iraq.





So why am I waiting for Bush to say something rude, arrogant, and provocative to those who released her?  Why am I waiting for him to insult the people who released her?  Why am I waiting for him to antagonize people who have turned around their worst behavior? 



___________________________



Later:  I am relieved that I was worried for nothing as far as his first statement has gone. 




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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Beyond Understanding


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 04/01/2006 11:45:28 AM
-----
BODY:

I was reading Billmon this morning when something suddenly went click.



His article was on Homeland Security, and about their latest crusade.  How, how, *how* did they decide to focus on the importing of prescription drugs from Canada as a *security* issue?  That is insane.  The components for a dirty bomb managed to cross the border, and these idiots are concerned with prescription drugs?



Drugs and hookers, hookers and drugs.  A lot of law enforcement is obsessed with these sorts of activities.  And their answer to external threats?  Usually "bomb them".



May as well disband this group and let FEMA go back to being at least modestly effective.  Being under Homeland Security has crippled our ability to deal with disaster.  Homeland Security itself may actually be one of the biggest disasters to cripple the US.


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Brian Fink
EMAIL: bdfink@aol.com
IP: 68.174.144.174
URL:
DATE: 04/01/2006 01:36:11 PM
This has gotten very little press so far - someone should run with it. FEMA is closing all of the New Orleans camps/tent cities that volunteers are staying in, as of April 10. These tents have been housing the volunteers gutting houses from organizations ranging from ACORN to Habitat for Humanity. the only stories on this so far on the net have been:
Christian Broadcasting Network:
http://www.cbn.com/cbnnews/usnews/060327a.asp and
Talking Points Memo Cafe
http://www.tpmcafe.com/node/28224.

This is ridiculous -- the very least that the federal government should do is house and feed volunteers coming to help.

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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: When Interests Converge


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs

DATE: 04/03/2006 04:34:34 PM
-----
BODY:

Over at Political Animal, Kevin Drum wondered whether he should drop in on the World Science Fiction Convention in Anaheim this August.



Of course I put in my two cents for "yes".  So did Mary Kay Kare, Patrick Neilsen Hayden, and Arthur Byron Cover.  There is a lot of crossover between web loggers and science fiction fans.  Avedon Carol and bellatrys are a couple of others who often mention science fiction.



No one but a TV or newspaper photographer thinks we all wear Klingon costumes.  I hope Kevin decides to go.


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Avedon
EMAIL: avedon@cix.co.uk
IP: 80.229.133.49
URL: http://sideshow.me.uk
DATE: 04/07/2006 06:18:17 AM
I also write about sf? Wow, I realize I haven't done anything fannish in a while, but I'm a three-time Hugo nominee and a TAFF winner. I don't go to Worldcons anymore but I will be at WisCon 30 with all the other past GOHs.
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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Scorpio
EMAIL: eccentric_00@hotmail.com
IP: 65.66.156.104
URL:
DATE: 04/07/2006 05:02:26 PM
You tempt me to go just to meet you -- though ConQuesT is the same weekend and I've gone to it every May since 1977.
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Too Dumb For Big Words


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Economics
CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 04/05/2006 06:17:47 PM
-----
BODY:

No cash for in-sur-ance, none for sav-ings ac-counts.



I know, Bush doesn't get it because some of those words have two syllables.  It's really too bad.  That is why he keeps lobbying for his "health savings account" nonsense.



Can't pay bills -- can't fill savings account.  Maybe he needs to be stripped of his estate and his job, and left to figure out how to pay a bill without Laura or an accountant to do it for him.  After all, banks are in the business of paying interest on savings.  If savings accounts could fix things, there wouldn't be a problem, now would there?


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Paula Helm Murray
EMAIL: dragonet@kc.rr.com
IP: 65.26.97.216
URL:
DATE: 04/06/2006 09:00:25 PM
You have it on the mark. Shrub will never have to worry, neither did his parents (hey, did you see on Making Light about the Alestair Crowley link to Babs? Weird...). But then we pretty much sing out of the same basic hymnal on politics to some extent.
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Do I Believe This?


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Politics
CATEGORY: Religion
CATEGORY: War

DATE: 04/09/2006 06:15:54 PM
-----
BODY:

I often tell you to get out your tinfoil hats and read something.



Unfortunately, with the Bush administration proposing to use nukes (and even mini-nukes are too much radiation, IMO), perhaps you should just read this thing without a foil hat:



Dan Simmons -- is this rabble-rousing, or truth?  Is jihad the bottom line?  Has it been the bottom line since Robert Kennedy's assassination?  When we went to war in Afghanistan, that was somewhat justified.  Would that we had stayed there and completed the job, building modern infrastructure and actually getting rid of the Taliban instead of letting them scuttle into cracks to re-emerge for another try.



Iraq -- I could go on for a long time about the choice of Iraq as a target.  Junior trying to outdo dad.  PNAC.  A wedge into the Moslem middle east.  A superficially secular state, now a hotbed of Moslem madness.



I suspect that it really *will* be jihad if he goes into Iran with nukes.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Read This


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 04/12/2006 08:50:49 AM
-----
BODY:

Billmon nails it.





You know, for awhile we lived in an alternate universe -- the one where the Wall came down and the Soviet Union disintegrated into Russia and the Balkan states once more.  And then.  And then, we moved back into one with terrors again.  A response to the country where Bin Laden lived was understandable.





The move into Iraq led to the world where Billmon would have to write the piece in the link.  We are behind the Looking Glass again, without spine enough to impeach the war criminals or hand them to an international court.  And after they do the unthinkable, will we still be that timorous?


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Young Republicans and Clinton


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Politics
CATEGORY: War

DATE: 04/12/2006 11:23:10 AM
-----
BODY:

This morning, a young Republican I know said that Medicare was going down because of *Clinton*.  I asked myself for quite awhile why he would say something that incredibly dumb.





It occurred to me that it's a thoroughly young Rebublican thing to blame Clinton for any and every error that the Bush administration has made.  It seems to me that their political memories are no more than 20 years long, and that shortly they might even forget Ronald Reagan existed.





If you ask about something really current, like Iran war planning, they get wonderfully defensive and finally cry out that if Bush bombs them, they must *deserve* it.  A fun reply is to say 'And Jesus said, "suffer the little children to be barbecue"' -- which causes them offense and high blood pressure.





:)






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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Paula Helm Murray
EMAIL: dragonet@kc.rr.com
IP: 65.26.97.216
URL:
DATE: 04/14/2006 09:08:44 PM
BTW, thanks for giving that twit a pain in the shorts. I was bored today and went to see what you said. I think it's a bored teenager who is stupid too.

tee hee.
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Welcome!


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Weblogs

DATE: 04/16/2006 11:28:04 AM
-----
BODY:

I understand that the Washington Post has done a smear job on lefty web logs -- likely as a response to their humiliation when it was found that the employee they chose to write the WaPo web log was a plagarist.



The two web logs they chose to exemplify the horrors of the left were My Left Wing and The Rude Pundit.   The Rude One has been one of my heros for a long time.   His  rants sound like what probably happens behind closed doors in Washington with great frequency.  As a matter of fact, when "Go f**k yourself" Cheney cut loose on the senate floor, it was like a glimpse into a Rude Rant, live and from one of the principals in the bizarre and graphic fantasies of rudeness.



Until today, I didn't read My Left Wing, but if you look to the left, you will see it there, and I intend to follow it daily.  Go read her photo essay of Ozymandias -- oh certainly this is just unbearable, isn't it?



So welcome to the blogroll,  Maryscott O'Connor, and keep up the good work.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Scorpio's Corollary


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 04/18/2006 11:33:26 PM
-----
BODY:

By now almost everyone on the net knows Godwin's law:  the first person to bring Hitler into an argument loses.



Scorpio's  Corollary is fairly simple.  The first person to justify Bush's conduct by claiming that Clinton did the same thing loses.  That is one of the most common lies in current debate tactics.  It deserves to be a line that ends discussion.



It's a really whiney argument, too -- as if Clinton's doing something justifies whatever Bush does.  That's insane.  And the lady who was parading with a protest sign that said "Would someone please give Bush a blowjob so we can impeach him?" was making more than one statement.



There are much, much better things to impeach him for -- *after* Cheney is indicted.


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: neal
EMAIL: neal.mesic@gmail.com
IP: 208.138.254.150
URL: http://flummoxed.typepad.com
DATE: 04/19/2006 03:19:00 PM
bravo from a fellow eccentric scorpio!
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: I Join Many of You


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Random Events

DATE: 04/20/2006 12:35:19 PM
-----
BODY:

... in the Great Job Hunt.  Lose a large client, lay off workers.



So this sweep caught me and quite a few others -- I've been getting calls from others who were affected.  It's not all bad.  There is a pretty generous separation package that will keep many of us in funds for a several month job hunt, and the offer of other possible positions with related companies that have openings.  They will even help us get our resumes up and running and work on the job hunt with us.  I don't suppose many unemployed have this smooth a path.



Last time I got laid off I ended up with a position that paid me twice what I had been making.  While that's not going to happen this time, I could still end up benefitting a bit from a move.  So in a day or two I'll hit the listings and get a resume together.  Maybe becoming a contractor again would be a Good Thing.   It's always had its attractions.



We'll see.


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Mark H
EMAIL: biomes_@cox.net
IP: 68.1.189.106
URL: http://biomesblog.typepad.com
DATE: 04/20/2006 01:45:22 PM
Good luck, Scorpio. I hope it works out for you.
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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Scorpio
EMAIL: eccentric_00@hotmail.com
IP: 67.64.41.116
URL:
DATE: 04/20/2006 02:44:42 PM
Thanks, Mark. I already have my resume done and listed online at the best of the professional sites. I was with this company so long that going back the required ten years only took two resume entries! And tomorrow we start "exit classes", can you imagine?
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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Donna
EMAIL: dmariemart@aol.com
IP: 63.98.144.242
URL: http://www.monalisassecret.com
DATE: 04/21/2006 12:19:27 PM
I feel confident that you'll come out ahead. One of the most pleasureable times of my recent life was the few months I had to myself after a layoff. I was fortunate in receiving a nice severance package, and there were still jobs to be found. Enjoy this time while you can, and search for the perfect job. Good hunting!
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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: IXLNXS
EMAIL: incubus52@comcast.net
IP: 68.34.159.132
URL: http://home.comcast.net/~incubus52/index.html
DATE: 05/04/2006 06:37:21 PM
Ten Years?!?

Filing for unemployment isn't going to be that hard at all. And if it was good enough for Bush 1 to do it has to be good enough for the average citizen.

Good luck landing that next gig.
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Oh Ick!


CONVERT BREAKS: 0


DATE: 04/24/2006 10:42:54 AM
-----
BODY:

Last night I had a dream (or perhaps it was a nightmare) that I was counseled to turn into a Bible-thumper and run for office.



OK, so I live in Kansas.  In my area, it is not necessary to turn into a Bible-thumper.  We had a thumper with lots of teeth run for Congress in 2004.  He sent out a weekly postcard about families and fetuses and all the Usual Stuff, and he lost to the incumbent.  Of course, I went out and voted against him.  I see a train of ads like that as a cynical ploy and a harbinger of knee-jerk votes in favor of Bush's push to give money to right wing religious crazies.



Can you imagine?  A billion dollars so far on "abstinence education".  You know, a billion on condoms and how to use them would have been money better spent.


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Donna
EMAIL: dmariemart@aol.com
IP: 67.172.221.156
URL: http://www.monalisassecret.com
DATE: 04/28/2006 10:15:28 PM
Sounds like a nightmare to me.
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: The Sun Rises in the East


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 04/25/2006 02:25:00 PM
-----
BODY:

The first thing Bush did to "ease" the spiking gasoline prices was to loosen environmental standards for its production.  Really.  And the sun came up in the East today, although it's raining so I have to take that on faith.


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Mike in Kansas
EMAIL: Michaelcaddell@direcway.com
IP: 69.19.14.29
URL: http://fightincockflyer.blogspot.com
DATE: 04/27/2006 10:25:00 AM
Halting shipments to the national petro reserve also made the news which means the Decider is very serious about fuel shortages among the people in the coming weeks ahead. The woman who runs the diner up on the hill said her Virginia based daughter called to say at least six stations she drove by yesterday were closed for lack of fuel deliveries.

Peak oil has arrived in the sweet light crude fields and that means that finally the manure has hit the fan for the vast majority of Americans.
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Taxes


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Economics

DATE: 04/26/2006 10:04:43 AM
-----
BODY:

Facing South has an interesting article today on estate taxes.  They report that all this noise for repeal of the tax is being led by 18 wealthy families that stand to gain over 71 billion dollars by a repeal.  Yes, that few can make a really large noise when they have huge amounts of cash to make it with.  Evidently Bill Frist will stand to gain quite a bit, being the scion of a health network.   No wonder he plans to lead the charge to repeal the tax.



One can hope that this 'repeal taxes for the rich' nonsense will stop shortly.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: May Day


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Economics
CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 04/29/2006 10:51:14 AM
-----
BODY:

The first of May is targeted for the next great wave of demonstrations about the status of immigrants in the US.  There is a web site for The Great American Boycott that links to times and places for almost every major city. 



As Facing South points out, there is almost nothing in progressive web logs about the organizing going on, or about immigration issues in general.  People on the right have a lot to say in between bouts of frothing, but those on the left are largely silent.



I know that George Bush has done his usual Prexy thing and declared that the "Star-Spangled Banner" should only be sung in English.  That is as stupid as having the French president declare that "La Marseillaise" should only be sung in French.  Anthems are routinely translated, and of course our ignorant leader acts like this is just not true.



Most of the agenda on the right is ignorant of history, population dynamics, and economic reality.  And there will be marching in the streets on Monday.


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: TRACY
EMAIL: tracyaphillips@yahoo.com
IP: 208.189.31.97
URL:
DATE: 05/01/2006 11:00:05 AM
Since today is my birthday, I declare that every Mayday the National Anthem should only be sung in one of the native American languages!
In the spirit of celebrating diversity here in the land of immigrants, who it just so happens took this land from the real owners.
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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: TRACY
EMAIL: tracyaphillips@yahoo.com
IP: 208.189.31.97
URL:
DATE: 05/02/2006 10:36:37 AM
Robin Williams' plan...(Hard to argue with this logic!) "I see a lot of people yelling for peace, but I have not heard of a plan for peace. So, here's one plan."
1) "The US will apologize to the world for our "interference" in their affairs, past & present. You know, Hitler, Mussolini, Stalin, Tojo, Noriega, Milosevic, Hussein, and the rest of those "good 'ole' boys", we will never "interfere" again.
2) We will withdraw our troops from all over the world, starting with Germany, South Korea, the Middle East, and the Philippines. They don't want us there. We would station troops at our borders. No one allowed sneaking through holes in the fence.
3) All illegal aliens have 90 days to get their affairs together and leave. We'll give them a free trip home. After 90 days the remainder will be gathered up and deported immediately, regardless of whom or where they are. They're illegal!!! France will welcome them.
4) All future visitors will be thoroughly checked and limited to 90 days unless given a special permit!!!! No one from a terrorist nation will be allowed in. If you don't like it there, change it yourself and don't hide here. Asylum would never be available to anyone. We don't need any more cab drivers or 7-11 cashiers.
5) No foreign "students" over age 21. The older ones are the bombers. If they don't attend classes, they get a "D" and it's back home baby.
6) The US will make a strong effort to become self-sufficient energy wise. This will include developing nonpolluting sources of energy but will require a temporary drilling of oil in the Alaskan wilderness. The caribou will have to cope for a while.
7) Offer Saudi Arabia and other oil producing countries $10 a barrel for their oil. If they don't like it, we go someplace else. They can go somewhere else to sell their production. (About a week of the wells filling up the storage sites would be enough.)
8) If there is a famine or other natural catastrophe in the world, we will not "interfere." They can pray to Allah or whomever, for seeds, rain, cement or whatever they need. Besides most of what we give them is stolen or given to the army. The people who need it most get very little, if anything.
9) Ship the UN Headquarters to an isolated island someplace. We don't need the spies and fair weather friends here. Besides, the building would make a good homeless shelter or lockup for illegal aliens.
10) All Americans must go to charm and beauty school. That way, no one can call us "Ugly Americans" any longer. The Language we speak is ENGLISH...learn it...or LEAVE...Now, isn't that a winner of a plan? "The Statue of Liberty is no longer saying "Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses." She's got a baseball bat and she's yelling, 'you want a piece of me?' "

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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Scorpio
EMAIL: eccentric_00@hotmail.com
IP: 208.190.202.90
URL:
DATE: 05/02/2006 12:56:41 PM
Does that include rejecting all products made offshore? And companies that offshore help lines? You know that the US has no steel plants, tv manufacturers, or shoemakers anymore, yes?

I'd love it if our country were energy self-sufficient, and discussing caribou is not essential. Of course, corn is one of the least efficient ways of getting alcohol/oil, but be that as it may, there are crops that could provide fuels, if our manufactories could provide transport with multiple capacities. I hear Brazil is trying to be self-sufficient by next year.

By next year, we'll still have a moron-in-chief.
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Smarties


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Random Events

DATE: 05/03/2006 11:47:14 AM
-----
BODY:

On boingboing, there is a post about today being a 'numerically significant date, that is, twice the time and date will be 01:02:03 04/05/06.  It is this, as a trackback points out "Unless Your [sic] American".  Oh yes, oh yes.



What none of them manage to mention is that it will also be 04/05/06 07:08:09 at some point.  Oh well, you can't win everything.


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Avedon
EMAIL: avedon@cix.co.uk
IP: 80.229.133.49
URL: http://sideshow.me.uk
DATE: 05/05/2006 12:49:24 PM
Of course, when it's 06/06/06, it will have the advantage of working on both sides of the ocean.
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Just What We Need


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Corruption
CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 05/06/2006 10:35:35 AM
-----
BODY:

Rumor has it that the replacement for Porter Goss at the CIA will be Michael Hayden.  Is he a Bush crony?  A Cheney crony?  No!  Hayden is a Negroponte crony!



That's downright special.  That is obviously something that will be good for the NSA, good for the CIA, and good for the citizens of this country, right?


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Joel
EMAIL: joeld@u.arizona.edu
IP: 128.196.23.200
URL: http://eventhorizon.typepad.com/
DATE: 05/09/2006 02:13:48 PM
Good point. I just realized that I don't have a crony, not even one. I'd better start collecting some cronies because obviously one can't succeed in this world without a network of cronies.
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: $2,000 at a Time


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Corruption
CATEGORY: Courts
CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 05/09/2006 09:02:48 PM
-----
BODY:

It looks like Bush and other Republicans will be returning campaign donations $2,000 at a time.  That was the maximum personal  donation allowed in 2004.  It is the amount that every indictable and corrupt party member donated as a matter of course. 



It could come to millions if every single one of them is charged -- $2,000 at a time.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: A Reagan Appointee Speaks


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Economics
CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 05/10/2006 03:06:42 PM
-----
BODY:

The United States is not a superpower.



Paul Craig Roberts gives all the many reasons the left has been repeating.  Outsourced manufacturing.  Outsourced service.  Considering the interests of company officer and shareholders first, and the impact of business on community not at all.



The War Without Reason.  Nuclear brandishing.  Untrustworthiness on a national level.  Debt.  More debt. 



All the big reasons are there.



[via A Brooklyn Bridge]


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Tiered Bribes


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 05/11/2006 05:49:28 PM
-----
BODY:

Instead of sending everyone $100 for gas, today Congress passed a tax cut.  Let's look at this piece of munificence [via Hoffmania]:



If you earn 50,000 or less per year
You will save $2 - 46



If you earn 50,000 - 100,000 per year
You will save $110 - 403



If you earn 100,000 - 1 million per year
You will save $1388 - 5562



If you earn 1 million or more
You will save $41,977 (average)



Meanwhile, no deducting state and local taxes, college expenses, school supplies teachers buy for their classes, or welfare-to-work incentives.  Yes, taking someone off welfare is no longer a tax-beneficial activity.  These guys really know how to run down a government.



Write to your congressmen and suggest that they need to work on governing responsibly instead of bribing the wealthy.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: A Dose of Religion


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Religion

DATE: 05/12/2006 05:21:44 PM
-----
BODY:

Badtux the Penguin does a mighty nice prayer.



Amen



[via The Green Knight]


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Mimus Pauly
EMAIL: MockMed@aol.com
IP: 152.163.100.204
URL: http://mimuspauly.blogspot.com
DATE: 05/12/2006 06:14:17 PM
Praying for Ann Coulter, huh? That can't be easy...
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Happy Mother's Day


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs

DATE: 05/14/2006 05:51:00 PM
-----
BODY:

quiddity says:



Calibratethesystem


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Confidentiality


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Corruption
CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 05/15/2006 02:17:14 PM
-----
BODY:

To use the phone for confidential purposes, one now needs to go buy one of those prepaid phones at WalMart or somewhere.



I know a police department that used to use Verizon.  They changed lately -- and that is probably good unless they want to have the NSA tracking their business.  It is not a good thing for snitches to be tied to police with records that go anywhere without a warrant. 



Reporters are going to have to buy cheapies to call confidential sources.  Whistleblowers are going to need cheapies if they wish to be anonymous.  Heck, one might be reluctant to call an HIV testing place on a regular phone now -- no telling when the government will decide that those shiny new camps they are building will need inhabitants.



If you don't want to volunteer your contacts, you'll be buying phones.  Count on it.



*******************************



Afterword:  Nothing like blogging before you read the news.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Belief


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Books
CATEGORY: Film
CATEGORY: Religion

DATE: 05/18/2006 12:42:15 PM
-----
BODY:

No matter what I'm going to sound like, bear in mind that I'm not anti-Christian.  I think that people have the right to believe whatever they believe.  I think that one's beliefs should not ever be made into laws that affect others except via the "My rights end at your nose" rule.  In other words, rules agains murder and assault are fine -- but rules about what others have to believe are not so good, and rules that restrict the right to hijack a public podium are likely in order.





So.  I am going to point out that The Da Vinci Code is a piece of fiction.  Oh, it's craftily done, but it is still all woven bits that make a story.  The crafty part is the way it bolsters its theories with what look like "facts", such as the discussion of Da Vinci's Last Supper.  What are you going to believe?  A priest or your lyin' eyes?  Your eyes tell you that in the painting, the figure to the right of Christ is female.  OK.  Your eyes tell you there is not a chalice.  OK.  Your eyes tell you that Christ and the figure to his right are dressed in complimentary colors.  OK.



Unfortunately, people who are prone to believe may well take this as "proof" that many other statements the author makes are "true -- why, there it is in front of us!"



Bad logic.  On the other hand, a huge amount of logic is bad, and in my estimation, religious proof is almost always a tautology -- believe the premise, accept the conclusions.  To me, the sticking point of religious argument has always been "buy the premise"; because that process, for me, emotionally equates to the willing suspension of disbelief. 



Dan Brown is not nice to the Catholic Church.  He may even have a point, though that will not cause them to love hm any better.  Yes, the church has suppressed and demonized the feminine.  Women are the devil that the church must control and punish -- and it is as true now as it was in the beginning, or maybe more so.  The church subjugates women in all its rites and rules.  The only group worse than Christians in this respect is Muslims -- and since they were an outgrowth of the Book as well, it is not surprising.



And of course, once again Brown brings to the fore various masochistic Catholic practices.  OK, so they enjoy pain.  Their iconology with thorns, blood, nails and agony makes this plain in any case; but they do hate it when personal masochistic practices are hilighted.



So, in summary, if one has a tendency to believe, one can easily be led to accept that Brown has a more substantive word than that taught from pulpits.  The Church only wants one to be credulous of their line, not to that of heretics.  Don't be surprised as the storm grows.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Indict Cheney First!


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 05/18/2006 08:52:01 PM
-----
BODY:

The new ribbon is courtesy of Avedon Carol at The Sideshow.


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: dragonet2
EMAIL: dragonet@kc.rr.com
IP: 65.26.97.216
URL:
DATE: 05/18/2006 10:15:42 PM
I personally believe ever red-blooded American should always answer the phone with "I am a terrorist." before continuing on but that's just me. Being eeeeevil.
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Be One in a Million


CONVERT BREAKS: 0


DATE: 05/19/2006 12:12:19 AM
-----
BODY:

Visit Blah3.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: A Bit of Entertainment


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Humor

DATE: 05/20/2006 01:15:15 PM
-----
BODY:

Check out Dear NSA, for the answers to all those questions you were afraid to ask!
 


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Coming Up


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs

DATE: 05/23/2006 01:27:29 PM
-----
BODY:

Here comes a holiday weekend.  I had a friend who used to observe Memorial Day by going to the nearest military base and laying a rose on either an unknown soldier monument or on a grave, if the post had a cemetery.



It is also the weekend of a multitude of science fiction conventions.  This is year number 29 that I will attend one in Kansas City.  People to see, things to do... I'll probably talk to a lot of people and do quite a bit of reading.  It will be a nice break from corruption.



We seem to be in full summer already -- the season has been at least two weeks early for everything, after a "winter" where one didn't need a coat most of the time.  In Kansas.  Right.  Ever read Little House on the Prairie?  The huge blizzards it describes really seem to be a thing of the past.  The last one I saw was in 1979.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: FedEx


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs

DATE: 05/23/2006 03:11:51 PM
-----
BODY:

Delivering good stuff everywhere.  Same day service.



See the animation of the penguins being delivered to New Orleans.



[via Looka!]


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: New Scam?


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Random Events

DATE: 05/24/2006 07:23:23 PM
-----
BODY:

About 3 or 4 times a week I get a call telling me that "xxxx is calling from New York and is sending a new card to all Medicare patients.  You are on Medicare, yes?"  About 3 times a week I bellow "No!" and slam down the phone -- but it's getting old.



Anyone else get calls like this?  Sounds like they are using an Indian call center to make the calls.


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Bryan
EMAIL: bryan@dumka.com
IP: 207.30.206.31
URL: http://whynow.dumka.us/
DATE: 05/25/2006 04:21:41 PM
In the long distance business this is known as slamming, changing your long distance provider based on a bogus phone call.

If you had said you were on Medicare, they would have gotten the information and sent a card for their Part D prescription plan, changing you from your current plan.
-----
COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Scorpio
EMAIL: eccentric_00@hotmail.com
IP: 64.218.106.62
URL:
DATE: 05/25/2006 06:13:33 PM
Now that's interesting. Of course, drug companies and telcos -- why should I be surprised? But I am. I'm still pretty ignorant about Medicare since I'm not old enough for it yet.
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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Bryan
EMAIL: bryan@dumka.com
IP: 207.30.206.178
URL: http://whynow.dumka.us/
DATE: 05/26/2006 02:20:52 PM
I got "drafted" to help several of my Mother's friends who are eligible, and one of them was suddenly switched to a different plan, for no apparent reason.

If you want to see some bad, unusable web sites, the companies involved in this turkey will take your breath away.
-----


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Pledge Time


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs

DATE: 05/26/2006 10:49:30 AM
-----
BODY:

Some time in the next three days, all of us will be called on to take The Pledge:



"I [your name] promise that in the coming year I will not get sick and I will not die." 



A Good Idea, all things considered.


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Mimus Pauly
EMAIL: MockMed@aol.com
IP: 172.164.16.207
URL: http://mimuspauly.blogspot.com/
DATE: 05/26/2006 10:54:05 AM
I can't make that pledge. Too big an information gap, you know...
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Our Sorry State


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Politics
CATEGORY: War

DATE: 05/28/2006 03:50:54 PM
-----
BODY:

Here is a post that says a lot about where we are.



[via Magpie]


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Mike in Kansas
EMAIL: Michaelcaddell@hughes.com
IP: 66.82.9.58
URL: http://fightincockflyer.blogspot.com
DATE: 05/29/2006 10:28:41 AM
Others, like my erksome editor - in - chief Pete Kassius, sez Kansas is more akin to "Mayberry on steroids" and that village life is a safe refuge for tinpot tyrants, most easily kicked out. The religious tyranny began in earnest during the late seventies and early eighties with the bombing and destruction of Wichita's Dr. George Tiller's women's clinic. Too many Democrats bent over and kissed the Bible Thumpers arses over the years, now they seem tatooed (stained) with the explosive diarreah (sp?) of the Kansas Christian Taliban. It probably is a "blue tide rising" but not enough to clog the legislative toilet bowl swirling around the big buildings in Topeka.
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Nada


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs

DATE: 06/01/2006 04:55:17 PM
-----
BODY:

It's full summer now, and so far I have spent it sleeping far too much.  The news is uniformly grumbly, and so am I.  Perhaps I should go away and read books and make book reports later  :)


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: More on Stolen


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Corruption
CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 06/02/2006 02:52:53 PM
-----
BODY:

Avedon Carol has made a long post over at The Sideshow on how the 2004 election was stolen, citing the Kennedy article in Rolling Stone.  I decided that the text of my comment to her should be the start of my own post on the topic.





Very flatly, by failing to contest the skewed exit poll results, Kerry deserved to be ... unemployed. It was evident to me on election day that the exit polls in FL and OH showed monkey business.




It was up to Kerry to go after those counties and pay for hand recounts. Instead he kept 45 million dollars to seed another campaign, broke his pledge to count every vote, and thus made himself Bush's moral equal. It's insane that we've had to put up with Bush again -- but our Democratic choice was flawed. I personally regret that Dean did not take the nomination and the White House.





Anyone who opposes a Republican needs to pledge that on an exit poll discrepancy, there will be a recount attended by at least two non-Republicans.  Places with Diebolt machines must agitate to have a paper trail that can be recounted.



Currently, our country is worse than a third-world hellhole for ensuring fair votes.  Kerry contributed directly to this state of affairs.  I would not vote for him again no matter what.  Some nice Green, Socialist, or Libertarian will get my vote if Kerry is the Democratic candidate.


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Mark H
EMAIL: biomes_@cox.net
IP: 68.1.189.106
URL: http://biomesblog.typepad.com
DATE: 06/04/2006 07:59:56 AM
"Some nice Green, Socialist, or Libertarian will get my vote if Kerry is the Democratic candidate."

Thus ensuring another republican victory.

Other than that, agreed 100%.
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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Scorpio
EMAIL: eccentric_00@hotmail.com
IP: 64.123.238.251
URL:
DATE: 06/04/2006 11:27:56 AM
I live in KS. Some Rethug will likely get it anyway. Only under the most extreme circumstances will KS go Dem for a national candidate. Locally it happens pretty often, but not for President.
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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Jill
EMAIL: nospam@nospam.com
IP: 12.144.4.242
URL: http://brilliantatbreakfast.blogspot.com
DATE: 06/07/2006 09:48:45 AM
I am so tired of Democrats telling me to fall in line or else, I could scream.

Never again will I reward any Democrat who sells me down the river with my vote. This party will not change until we start holding them responsible for their actions. "Any Dem is better than a Republican" doesn't apply when the Dems do things like Nancy Pelosi taking holding this president accountable off the table and when they pass the bankruptcy bill and other Republican atrocities to which Democrats have weakly capitulated.

With Republicans I know who I'm dealing with. It's the people who claim to be representing me and then stab me in the back who are dangerous, because they make me think I have a choice.
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Missed Opportunity :)


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Music

DATE: 06/03/2006 05:11:28 PM
-----
BODY:

I went out in search of music today with two CDs in mind:  Buffy, the musical, and the new Dixie Chicks album.



Surprise!  The store I went to had Buffy, but no Dixie Chicks.  A major retailer, and they only got 50 copies of the Chicks in.  That will teach them to put their regressive politics where their choosing skills should be.  Anyone with an ear can hear that the Chicks have only become better.



And besides, the Dixie Chicks no longer represent a minority opinion.  The solid majority of our citizens do not think Mr. Bush is doing a good job. 


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Good Speakers


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Education
CATEGORY: Remembering

DATE: 06/05/2006 05:49:09 PM
-----
BODY:

My old alma mater, Knox College, has had some fine speakers lately -- unlike what they did the year I graduated.  Last year, the speaker was Barack Obama -- and this year it was Stephen Colbert.  The full text is on the college web site.  It's a wonderful speech, unlike the one that occurred upon my graduation.  (Ours was one of those "famous speakers giving the same speech over and over" offerings, the kind that led to this year's rebuttal-before-the-speech of McCain's repeats by an annoyed graduate.  It was reported that he -- whose name has disappeared from my memory --  gave the speech at a bigger Illinois school, and we weren't even a footnote.)



Anyway, good for them.  Considering the place now costs over 30,000 a year, they may has well have had some joy from it.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Say What?


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 06/06/2006 01:01:10 PM
-----
BODY:

What a headline!  US to Give Iran Nuclear Technology.



You have to wonder if this is so that our lunatic-in-chief can say with confidence that they have it so he can bomb them.  How is it that I so thoroughly distrust this administration?



Oh.  Right.  Experience.


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: josh
EMAIL: joshjpeg@aol.com
IP: 68.175.21.13
URL: http://www.surveymonkey.com/s.asp?u=98975227063
DATE: 06/17/2006 12:06:16 PM
Hi, Iâ€(tm)m in grad school and for a summer project weâ€(tm)re reviewing Googleâ€(tm)s Blogger Web Comments tool. We saw you used the tool. Do you mind taking a short survey to get your thoughts on it?

http://www.surveymonkey.com/s.asp?u=989752270633

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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Scorpio
EMAIL: eccentric_00@hotmail.com
IP: 64.219.128.148
URL:
DATE: 06/17/2006 02:02:02 PM
Actually, this web log uses the Typepad comments, which are not google comments. So no, I have no clue what you'd need.
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: But of Course!


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Games

DATE: 06/06/2006 02:54:53 PM
-----
BODY:


You scored as D'Artagnan. You are D'Artagnan, the brash Gascon who embodies the high ideals of the Musketeer. You are sometime your own worst enemy, but your motives are pure and your character is unimpeachable. You are destined for great things and passionate (though often ill-fated) love.















































D'Artagnan

80%

Aramis

65%

Porthos

65%

Mercedes

65%

Edmund Dantes

60%

Richelieu

55%

Athos

50%

Rochefort

30%

Which Dumas character are you? (pics)
created with QuizFarm.com




[via Punning Pundit]


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Donna
EMAIL: dmariemart@aol.com
IP: 67.172.221.156
URL: http://www.wordwhammy.com
DATE: 06/11/2006 02:10:10 PM
It was a tie for me - 80% Mercedes and 80% Richelieu.
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Mythology


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: War

DATE: 06/08/2006 01:32:50 PM
-----
BODY:

Most mythology has its roots in the experiences, hopes and fears of humans.



Obviously the current administration has never heard of the hydra, or they would not be so full of having bombed Zarqawi to death.  True, Zarqawi was an artifact who was designed to be a bogeyman when they decided to ignore bin Laden, but really...!


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Riders


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Corruption
CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 06/11/2006 01:28:15 PM
-----
BODY:

I gave some thought to all the distressing things I did not write about in the last few days.  After going through the pile, it occurred to me that a lot of business has not changed over my lifetime.



One piece of business that persistently comes up, again and again, is tax relief for millionaires.  Of course Bill Frist still has it on his agenda -- it will benefit him and his family enormously.  He plans to attach it to something essential later in the legislative session because he's determined to get those millions for himself and his posterity.



The usual tactic is to attach tax scams for the wealthy to something like money for keeping the military going, or hurricane relief, or homeland security; that way, one's opponents can be characterized as being "against" something beneficial if they see fit to say no to the scams of the wealthy.



Watch for actions by the rich and infamous, coming to a legislative package in the near future.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Weekender


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Economics

DATE: 06/11/2006 07:28:22 PM
-----
BODY:

One of the most *interesting* items I read this weekend was in The Huffington Post --  Fendi is suing WalMart for selling knockoff handbags and other Fendi-labelled items as genuine, when WalMart is not one of their customers.



I am trying to imagine paying over $500.00 for a handbag, real, knockoff -- no matter which; the very idea is insane.  And I am trying to imagine doing this at Sam's Club -- worse and worse!  Can you imagine how embarrassing it would be to admit that you spent that kind of money at Sam's Club for a fake Fendi?


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Bryan
EMAIL: bryan@dumka.com
IP: 207.30.162.228
URL: http://whynow.dumka.us/
DATE: 06/11/2006 09:44:02 PM
Actually, I can imagine it and it might be worth it if it were a handmade leather bag hand-sewn in Italy with your name embossed on the inside and the strap hand fitted to you.

I know someone who has such a bag that was designed for her by a niece. It came with a Mont Blanc pen as an accessory. The leather is soft as butter and tougher than Kevlar.

Most of the "designer" stuff is made in China, just like the knock-offs and it won't last. Asian thread other than silk is terrible and will break after a winter in a colder climate.

Buying a "status" item in Sam's Club is pathetic.
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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Scorpio
EMAIL: eccentric_00@hotmail.com
IP: 65.66.155.19
URL: http://scorpio.typepad.com/eccentricity/
DATE: 06/12/2006 09:14:10 PM
I'm of the opinion that more pathetic than buying a status item at Sam's Club is getting ripped off while attempting to do the same.

The quest for status through sunglasses, shoes and handbags is unspeakably shallow. If those things impress you about someone, you have a severe problem. If you want the awed respect of others, it seems that the kind of folks you want respect from would have to be extremely deficient if those items elicit the reaction you seek; this inevitably leads to the conclusion that to seek such is insane.

OK, so I repeat myself.
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Interesting for a Change


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Economics
CATEGORY: Food and Drink

DATE: 06/12/2006 05:45:39 PM
-----
BODY:

CNN's question today is interesting for a change instead of inane.  It doesn't investigate complexity, of course, but it suggests some issue:



"Do you think dependence on oil will be eliminated in your lifetime?"



Well, I am sure the price of oil is going to go so high that either the need for oil will be taken up by other means, or there is going to be social upheval of a magnitude that we can't even imagine right now, up to and including a sizeable population die-off by some rather ugly means.



OK, maybe I should have chosen Cassandra instead of Scorpio for a name.  I'm still very sure that either other resources will replace oil for energy and transportation, or the inability to transport food and grow an amount to feed the standing population will combine to kill off a huge number of people.



One of the things Japan has always done for its own national security is insist on providing enough rice for its population without importing any.  Japan is small enough that transportation is also not as huge a problem as it is in a country three thousand miles across.  If we had self-sufficient cantons that traded for variety, that would be one thing.  But our country has no plans to keep citizens in a basic resource.



This is ultimately going to be part of our undoing.




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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Mike in Kansas
EMAIL: Michaelcaddell@hughes.com
IP: 66.82.9.83
URL: http://fightincockflyer.blogspot.com
DATE: 06/13/2006 12:26:31 AM
It could stop the war machine, or accelerate it, either way the country will go through a long overdue period of crisis. People will have to cope with shortages and many of us might be dislocated from the cities. I don't think it will unfold as fast as many think, just because the stock market crashed in '29 many parts of the country didn't really experience the Depression until things started coming up short.

It will be tough to support Republicans, for the rest of the history of the country, what might be left of it after the petro - collapse.

Chomsky's new book about "Failed States" does leave the prospects of democratic reform as a pretty likely remedy for crisis, if people will get out there and do something about it all.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Advertisers


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs

DATE: 06/14/2006 03:28:39 PM
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BODY:

Advertisers live in another universe.  Really they do.  Via Magpie, I looked at this commercial.



Go look at it, then page down to what my first reaction was.



*



*



*



*



*



*



*



*



*



*



When I saw the dead rising from the sea, I had a horrid flash of it being the New Orleans coast.  Not nice.  Not what the commercial wanted to evoke...I hope.


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: dragonet2
EMAIL: dragonet@kc.rr.com
IP: 65.26.97.216
URL:
DATE: 06/16/2006 06:55:02 PM
Get me a ball bat.... That was totally fscked up.
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Pedestrian Friendly


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Remembering

DATE: 06/16/2006 02:49:44 PM
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BODY:

I came across a news headline about pedestrian friendly redevelopment.  It led to a story "New urban designs sought in obesity fight".



Yesterday, I talked to an old friend, who was remembering how we used to walk to the public library and come home carrying piles of books.  We lived at the south end of town, and the library was at the north end.  We walked everywhere, every day.  Our family had one car, and my father used it to commute to work, so there were no other options -- no school buses for grammar school, no mass transit, and barely one cab company.



And you know what?  "Obesity" still happened to a large number of us.



Don't get me wrong -- a town designed for walking is a fine thing to live in.  I should know.  It's just not a way to "fight obesity".  A town designed for walking, in range of a good agricultural area, may actually be able to weather our future when oil becomes insanely expensive.  Just don't expect all its residents to be height weight proportional.  Walking is good, but it won't trump genetics.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: It Would Be Better


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Remembering
CATEGORY: War

DATE: 06/18/2006 08:08:19 PM
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BODY:

It would be *much* better, if Bush worked as hard to eliminate Death as he has worked to get rid of taxes.  Unfortunately, that hasn't been the case.



I just went and read the obituary of a friend who died this week.  I knew he was around my age.  Turns out he was a month younger than me.  Now that is depressing.



He served in VietNam as a marine, and gave a lot of his life to helping kids, so much that the mayor declared a day in his honor several years ago.  When people mumble their disgusting mumbles about how marines will fit back into our society after a war, I think about this man, and the fact that he has done more good in his too-short life than a lot of the mumblers will accomplish with the entirety of theirs, even if theirs are longer.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Betrayal


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Politics
CATEGORY: War

DATE: 06/20/2006 01:46:57 PM
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BODY:

The young men and women who are in our armed forces are often there for the most idealistic of reasons.  They want to make our country safe.  The want people to have freedom.  They think that this is a way to reach those goals.



The lies that took the US into Iraq betray the youngsters who have been fighting it; they are the  first and formost among those who have been harmed.  Many of them, the products of a public education system that has left them ignorant of history and unable to distinguish a valid argument from a smear, bought the concept that Iraq and/or Saddam was responsible for attacking the US. 



That  was the Big Lie that made a lot of service members think that invading Iraq was a heroic act.  So many times, statements from young soldiers have shown that they were pumped up with lies. The media they have been exposed to overseas have been totally right-wing as a matter of policy, as if hearing another opinion would make the entire war machine unravel.  And so their ideals and loyalty have been betrayed by an illegal and immoral use, and by constant reinforcement of lies.  And often, when they have found out the truth, they have refused to return to Iraq, have spoken out against war in large numbers, or have just plain deserted.



These lies and the resulting destruction of lives, loyalty, and an entire society can be chalked up to the right in general, and to the Bush administration in particular.



What can be chalked up to left-stupidity is the attempt to impose political correctness on soldiers.  This is not about torture or war crimes.  It's about something as ridiculous as making a big issue of "Hadji Girl".  Geez, a parody teenage love song shouldn't even make the news.  And the person who was so indignant about the stupid refrain should be tied up in front of a television to watch a South Park episode about the Diversity Museum and the Diversity Camp.



By all means stand up for the Geneva Conventions.  Speak out about the lies of the right.  Do the best you can to get us out of there.  But whining about "Hadji Girl" is insane when we still have people torturing prisoners.


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Fixer
EMAIL: WoodRH@optonline.net
IP: 69.117.236.186
URL: http://alterx.blogspot.com/
DATE: 06/25/2006 09:27:36 AM
Don't mean to blogwhore, but I agree with you completely.

http://alterx1.blogspot.com/2006/06/hadji-girl.html
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Oh My Golly Gosh!


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 06/21/2006 12:26:52 PM
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BODY:

I was sent to this site -- a Kos diary -- by Atrios at Eschaton.



Wow! the stuff you learn on the web!



I was especially impressed by having had a recent run-in with a group of Rightard slimers.  There is no straw man too bulky for them to demolish, believe me!  They will invent your opinions for you and then put you in their own version of Abu Ghraib for instruction into the virtues of patriotism and freedom.  Oh I am so chastised!



Thank you, Atrios and Hunter, for these educational efforts.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Time for Dialup?


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Corruption
CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Law

DATE: 06/22/2006 12:34:02 PM
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BODY:

AT&T changed their privacy policy recently.  It  discusses sharing data, but does not emphasize that warrants are required before government gets their cooperation.  This is ominous.



I may end up getting a new phone company, a new long distance company, and switching to dial-up just to preserve the illusion that the phone company is not conspiring to commit indecent acts with data.   I suspect they have been selling us out on a regular basis on no more than the word of inveterate snoops.  Bringing their intentions into their publicity policy (it's not privacy anymore, no matter that it's got a Bush Doublespeak Title) is no more than fair warning to all of us to bail on these cowards.


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Mark Bondurant
EMAIL: mbondr1@yahoo.com
IP: 207.178.212.210
URL:
DATE: 07/10/2006 05:17:44 PM
Check out "Working Assets" for long distance.
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: The Will to Believe


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: War

DATE: 06/23/2006 08:55:33 PM
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BODY:

There are people who Really Truly Believed Rick Santorum when he stated that WMD had been found in Iraq.  I don't think that the people who believe him are stupid; but I do find that they have a completely different kind of will to believe than I do.



I mean, this is the man who took a dead baby home so his kids could hold it and kiss it.   A lot about this man is questionable, and his declarations about weapons was wrong.  Think Progress has the news clip where Fox News broke this to the Senator.



Now why is it that those with the Will to Believe don't recalculate when faced with facts?


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Old News


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Politics
CATEGORY: War

DATE: 06/26/2006 06:29:55 PM
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BODY:

One of the things that the Clinton Administration did to try to stop terrorist organizations was monitor their financial transactions.



So it fills me with awe when an idiot of a Representative, and the chief of Homeland Security want to press charges on the Times for writing a story on the government using financial records to pursue terrorists.  Just how stupid are these people? 



I seem to recall that there was a story years ago complaining that Bush had 25 accountants pursuing Cuba and only five chasing terrorist organizations.  It never ceases to amaze me that there are folks who think that this kind of tactic is some kind of secret.  It's even more amazing that someone thinks that it's a criminal offense to discuss it.



Ah, yes, never attribute to malice what can readily be explained by stupidity.


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Bryan
EMAIL: bryan@dumka.com
IP: 209.26.22.112
URL: http://whynow.dumka.us/
DATE: 06/27/2006 08:03:37 PM
With multiple court cases involving support for Palestinian groups and Islamic group who worked in Bosnia, no one was supposed to figure out that they were looking at banking records?

They have been bragging about tracking the money, and no one was supposed to know that you have to get records from a clearing house?

The problem is that the "terrorists" aren't as stupid as the Shrubbery.
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: They Remembered


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Courts
CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 06/29/2006 12:16:38 PM
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BODY:

Amazing!  The Supreme Court remembered that it is their job to uphold the Constitution!



The court declared 5-3 that military tribunals could not be used, that prisoners could not be kept indefinitely, and that the US was obliged to adhere to the third Geneva Convention that bars degrading and humiliating treatment of prisoners.



Of course, Mr. Bush is squawking about lese majesty.  He is stamping his wittle footies.  Those of you who voted for him have much to answer for.


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: dragonet2
EMAIL: dragonet@kc.rr.com
IP: 65.26.97.216
URL:
DATE: 06/30/2006 12:19:33 AM
Pity. Sorta like he announced early that he would be indiscriminantly seeking banking records for terrorists and is now getting upset that papers are reporting that that is happening.

What a bimbo. Too bad he's His Majesty, the President-boob.
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: A New Golden Rule


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 07/01/2006 05:44:02 PM
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BODY:

Any talk show host who advocates violence should be done by as he proposes others do.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: If Wishes Came True


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 07/03/2006 02:31:22 PM
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BODY:

Never mind.  Wishes do not come true.



But if they did, the vision of Hillary having the guts to be as evil to Republicans as George is to Democrats -- well, the fantasy is really entertaining.



Like Billmon, I don't think that even in *her* wildest dreams was such a thing ever whispered.  I doubt she could manage it, and I am sure that the press will be gunning for her the instant she decides to run.  I'm also not a Hillary fan.



But oh, in fantasy land it is rather satisfying to imagine her with complete control of the legislative agenda, outright spying available as a bragging point and the will to make Republicans miserable.   



After all this time I am still trying to figure out how George Bush makes so many people roll over and play sycophant.  A deal with the Devil would explain it nicely, with the Devil holding the Dubya soul as prepayment.


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Donna
EMAIL: dmariemart@aol.com
IP: 67.172.221.156
URL: http://www.monalisassecret.com
DATE: 07/03/2006 09:51:33 PM
Does Dubya even have a soul?
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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Scorpio
EMAIL: eccentric_00@hotmail.com
IP: 64.123.239.101
URL:
DATE: 07/03/2006 11:12:10 PM
Well, see, that's what I mean. If the Devil has it and Dubya is just operating on soulless power, it would explain a lot.
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: July 4th Declaration


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: War

DATE: 07/04/2006 11:07:34 AM
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BODY:

The Veterans for Peace last year compiled this Declaration of Impeachement using the text of the Declaration of Independence.



It is as relevant this year as it was last year.  Considering that many people laid their lives down to create a country free of the tyrannies described in the Declaration, it behooves us to pay attention to what these veterans have to say.



And Sadly, No had a wonderful post about one reason we can rejoice this Fourth.  We had a decision from the Supreme Court which showed that all reason is not lost, no matter how King George rages and breaks the law.






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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: July 4, 1776


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Frames

DATE: 07/04/2006 02:38:12 PM
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BODY:

The Declaration of Independence of the Thirteen Colonies

In CONGRESS, July 4, 1776



The unanimous Declaration of the thirteen united States of America,



When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.





We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. --That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, --That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security. â€"Such has been the patient sufferance of these Colonies; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former Systems of Government. The history of the present King of Great Britain [George III] is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over these States. To prove this, let Facts be submitted to a candid world.





He has refused his Assent to Laws, the most wholesome and necessary for the public good.





He has forbidden his Governors to pass Laws of immediate and pressing importance, unless suspended in their operation till his Assent should be obtained; and when so suspended, he has utterly neglected to attend to them.





He has refused to pass other Laws for the accommodation of large districts of people, unless those people would relinquish the right of Representation in the Legislature, a right inestimable to them and formidable to tyrants only.





He has called together legislative bodies at places unusual, uncomfortable, and distant from the depository of their public Records, for the sole purpose of fatiguing them into compliance with his measures.





He has dissolved Representative Houses repeatedly, for opposing with manly firmness his invasions on the rights of the people.





He has refused for a long time, after such dissolutions, to cause others to be elected; whereby the Legislative powers, incapable of Annihilation, have returned to the People at large for their exercise; the State remaining in the mean time exposed to all the dangers of invasion from without, and convulsions within.





He has endeavoured to prevent the population of these States; for that purpose obstructing the Laws for Naturalization of Foreigners; refusing to pass others to encourage their migrations hither, and raising the conditions of new Appropriations of Lands.





He has obstructed the Administration of Justice, by refusing his Assent to Laws for establishing Judiciary powers.





He has made Judges dependent on his Will alone, for the tenure of their offices, and the amount and payment of their salaries.





He has erected a multitude of New Offices, and sent hither swarms of Officers to harass our people, and eat out their substance.




He has kept among us, in times of peace, Standing Armies without the consent of our legislatures.




He has affected to render the Military independent of and superior to the Civil power.




He has combined with others to subject us to a jurisdiction foreign to our constitution and unacknowledged by our laws; giving his Assent to their Acts of pretended Legislation:




For Quartering large bodies of armed troops among us:




For protecting them, by a mock Trial, from punishment for any Murders which they should commit on the Inhabitants of these States:




For cutting off our Trade with all parts of the world:




For imposing Taxes on us without our Consent:




For depriving us, in many cases, of the benefits of Trial by Jury:




For transporting us beyond Seas to be tried for pretended offences:




For abolishing the free System of English Laws in a neighbouring Province, establishing therein an Arbitrary government, and enlarging its Boundaries so as to render it at once an example and fit instrument for introducing the same absolute rule into these Colonies:




For taking away our Charters, abolishing our most valuable Laws, and altering fundamentally the Forms of our Governments:




For suspending our own Legislatures, and declaring themselves invested with power to legislate for us in all cases whatsoever.




He has abdicated Government here, by declaring us out of his Protection and waging War against us.




He has plundered our seas, ravaged our Coasts, burnt our towns, and destroyed the lives of our people.




He is at this time transporting large Armies of foreign Mercenaries to compleat the works of death, desolation and tyranny, already begun with circumstances of Cruelty and perfidy scarcely paralleled in the most barbarous ages, and totally unworthy the Head of a civilized nation.




He has constrained our fellow Citizens taken Captive on the high Seas to bear Arms against their Country, to become the executioners of their friends and Brethren, or to fall themselves by their Hands.




He has excited domestic insurrections amongst us, and has endeavoured to bring on the inhabitants of our frontiers, the merciless Indian Savages, whose known rule of warfare, is an undistinguished destruction of all ages, sexes and conditions.




In every stage of these Oppressions We have Petitioned for Redress in the most humble terms: Our repeated Petitions have been answered only by repeated injury. A Prince whose character is thus marked by every act which may define a Tyrant, is unfit to be the ruler of a free people.




Nor have We been wanting in attentions to our British brethren. We have warned them from time to time of attempts by their legislature to extend an unwarrantable jurisdiction over us. We have reminded them of the circumstances of our emigration and settlement here. We have appealed to their native justice and magnanimity, and we have conjured them by the ties of our common kindred to disavow these usurpations, which, would inevitably interrupt our connections and correspondence. They too have been deaf to the voice of justice and of consanguinity. We must, therefore, acquiesce in the necessity, which denounces our Separation, and hold them, as we hold the rest of mankind, Enemies in War, in Peace Friends.




We, therefore, the Representatives of the united States of America, in General Congress, Assembled, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions, do, in the Name, and by the Authority of the good People of these Colonies, solemnly publish and declare, That these United Colonies are, and of Right ought to be Free and Independent States; that they are Absolved from all Allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain, is and ought to be totally dissolved; and that as Free and Independent States, they have full Power to levy War, conclude Peace, contract Alliances, establish Commerce, and to do all other Acts and Things which Independent States may of right do. And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor.





The signers of the Declaration represented the new states as follows:




New Hampshire




Josiah Bartlett, William Whipple, Matthew Thornton




Massachusetts





John Hancock, Samuel Adams, John Adams, Robert Treat Paine, Elbridge Gerry




Rhode Island





Stephen Hopkins, William Ellery




Connecticut





Roger Sherman, Samuel Huntington, William Williams, Oliver Wolcott




New York





William Floyd, Philip Livingston, Francis Lewis, Lewis Morris




New Jersey





Richard Stockton, John Witherspoon, Francis Hopkinson, John Hart, Abraham Clark




Pennsylvania





Robert Morris, Benjamin Rush, Benjamin Franklin, John Morton, George Clymer, James Smith, George Taylor, James Wilson, George Ross




Delaware





Caesar Rodney, George Read, Thomas McKean




Maryland





Samuel Chase, William Paca, Thomas Stone, Charles Carroll of Carrollton




Virginia





George Wythe, Richard Henry Lee, Thomas Jefferson, Benjamin Harrison, Thomas Nelson, Jr., Francis Lightfoot Lee, Carter Braxton




North Carolina





William Hooper, Joseph Hewes, John Penn




South Carolina





Edward Rutledge, Thomas Heyward, Jr., Thomas Lynch, Jr., Arthur Middleton




Georgia





Button Gwinnett, Lyman Hall, George Walton





[via]


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Campbell Conference


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Books
CATEGORY: Education

DATE: 07/06/2006 04:09:43 PM
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BODY:

This weekend the Campbell Conference is happening at the University of Kansas.  James Gunn has sponsored this since the late 1970's.  Tonight is a talk by George Zebrowski.  Tomorrow night is the Campbell Awards dinner.   Saturday and Sunday the conference has talks and discussions on topics in SF.



This is a good thing to go to if you are in the neighborhood of Lawrence, KS.  Being unemployed has put the conference fee out of reach at the moment, but I've attended many times -- and participated in making many of the early conferences interesting social events as well as educational ones. 


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Cutting off the Nose


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 07/08/2006 04:54:00 PM
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BODY:

The governor of NJ would have been better off cancelling legislator salaries and keeping the casino inspectors active while the budget was being a problem.



The civil servants would have been overseeing the generating of over a million dollars a day in casino tax revenue.  The legislature, on the other hand, had failed to do their job and should definitely have their salaries docked until the budget is signed.  Sometimes you have to wonder about the people in government.  They seem to lack the rudiments of cash flow understanding.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: News Flash!


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Science

DATE: 07/09/2006 05:20:27 PM
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BODY:

Men and women are different from each other!



While the genes that determine gender account for a mere 2% of chromosomal material, they affect specialized tissues differently in men and women.



Earlier studies had identified about 1,000 sex-influenced genes in the liver and about 60 gender-biased genes in the brain, but that was only about one-tenth of the number that the UCLA team found in those organs. Gender consistently influenced the expression of thousands of genes in liver, fat and muscle tissues, but the effect was actually more limited in the brain, where hundreds, rather than thousands, of genes showed different expression patterns between the sexes.




"Males and females share the same genetic code, but our findings imply that gender regulates how quickly the body can convert DNA to proteins," said Xia Yang, first author of the study and a postdoctoral fellow in cardiology at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA.


And what the article concludes is that there should be gender specific drug studies, since most drugs are prescribed to women on the basis of studies done on men.  It's amazing that despite this, women still live longer than men on the average.



[via Philosoraptor]







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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Meta Law


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Corruption
CATEGORY: Law

DATE: 07/10/2006 06:30:17 PM
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BODY:

There ought to be a law.



The only real meta law the US has is in the Bill of Rights, in the form of "Congress shall make no law...."



The best law I can think of would be one that forbids the use of legislation to favor industries over individuals; laws that forbid legislation that favors any business over its competitors; legislation that  keeps the government from interfering with technology.



The Agitator has an example of something that would be worth forbidding.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Parting Compliment


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Economics
CATEGORY: Random Events
CATEGORY: Web/Tech

DATE: 07/11/2006 11:15:04 AM
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BODY:

For a long time I had McAfee software, and recently I had to cancel an automatic renewal due to continued unemployment.



I am here to tell you that they did it without an interrogation, without running me around, and without nagging or complaining.  This encourages me to sign up with them in the future.



On the other hand, if AOL were the last ISP in the USA, I might want to give up going online.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: They Do It With A Straight Face


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs

DATE: 07/13/2006 11:07:40 AM
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BODY:

It's really odd that a lot of people who believe we should nuke various points in the Middle East also go around wearing stuff that looks like this:



Ironic_1


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Artificial Stupidity


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Random Events
CATEGORY: Web/Tech

DATE: 07/13/2006 11:12:42 AM
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BODY:

A couple of months ago, I paid my AT&T phone bill the way I have paid Southwestern Bell for years -- went into the online bank interface, typed in the amount on the checked company, and pressed enter.  (SW Bell ate AT&T recently, and then adopted the AT&T name.)  The account number has stayed stable for over 13 years now, no matter what these people call themselves.



My bank interface showed the check cleared.



Then the next month I got a bill for double, and was informed that I had not paid the previous one.  So I called.  Nope, they had no clue (and they never got back to me in 5 days, either).  So I called the bank, and they gave me the online billpayer number.  Well, the billpayer subcontractor  did not talk to individuals, so I called the bank again and they called the online bill payer.  Oh, said they, the amount was refused because there was no such account number.



What?



On an account I had used for years?  I extracted the number from the online bill payer folks, and sure enough, there was a zero where a dash should be.  And of course, no one from the bank or the billpayer notified me of their little problem.



Now how is it that the phone company managed to get the money credited for years before they had a problem?  Why, they used to get a paper check that a person had to process, but they finally got a wire system.



Now here is where the artificial stupidity comes in -- they have not programmed this sucker well enough to send an error report to a human when there is a mismatch.  They have not programmed it well enough to extract the PHONE NUMBER of the BILL PAYER (which is part of the accursed account number) and match it to a payment.  They do not seem to be using intelligence.  They have not done a reasonable job of accepting payments, in other words.



The b**ch at the phone company's customer screwing line wanted to know why exactly I thought this was their fault.  Because they are incapable of crediting a payment that they have managed to find for 13 years?  Could that be it?  And then they want to charge me because they can't do their jobs?



Computer: a device to allow people to make more and faster mistakes.



Thanks, AT&T!


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Self Image


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Politics
CATEGORY: Religion

DATE: 07/13/2006 05:14:01 PM
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BODY:

What is the self-image of a culture that has to put women under the veil?



One of the things this says is that the men of that culture are animals.  They are weak in self-discipline.  They are infinitely distractable.   They blame others for their inability to behave civilly.    They cannot control the urge to rape.   



And the women?  Are they protected?  They are only partly protected from the animals who surround them.  They are not protected by the law.  Actually, they are protected only by other animals, who know no strategies for real protection, only the medieval strategy of locking them up.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Grrrrrrr


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Economics
CATEGORY: Rants

DATE: 07/13/2006 05:56:53 PM
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BODY:

I called a credit card company and asked to reduce my credit line. 



Interrogation time.



They asked if I had a reason.  I said "yes" and refused to embellish.  Then they pulled "if you want to raise it back up we might have to do a credit check."



"Do you know how little I care about that?"



"Vell I see heah dat you haf only one other cahd."



Wrong, morons.  I have about five, and yours is the third one I have killed this year. 



This company has now gone to an Indian call center.  I may have to cancel it entirely since its clerk is unintelligible and company policy is obviously to harrass people who are lowering their debt.  I'll let it ride for a bit, but I am getting more and more hostile toward companies that think they know what I want more than I do.  And let me tell you, Indian call centers are inexcusable with the interest these particular bastards charge.


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Bryan
EMAIL: bryan@dumka.com
IP: 207.30.119.221
URL: http://whynow.dumka.us/
DATE: 07/13/2006 07:59:45 PM
There is no good business reason not to keep all support in house. If you out-source your call center, you are no longer talking to your customers and have no way of knowing what people like or dislike about your product, nor any way of finding out what is breaking out of the box.

You are losing control of your business while saving some small amount on your overhead. If you stop talking to your customers, it won't be long before they stop talking to you.

My Mother does a lot of catalog shopping, and won't do business with anyone who uses a foreign call center.
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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Donna
EMAIL: dmariemart@aol.com
IP: 67.172.221.156
URL: http://www.monalisassecret.com
DATE: 07/14/2006 11:24:09 PM
I'm trying to get rid of my credit cards too. Every time I cancel one, I do a happy dance.
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Asymmetric Warfare


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Politics
CATEGORY: War

DATE: 07/16/2006 03:52:56 PM
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BODY:

Finally!  It dawned on me what asymmetric warfare is.



It's what those dastardly Rebels and Colonials were doing -- hiding behind trees and killing Hessian and British troops instead of Coming Out and Forming Squares Like Real Men.



The very term belongs to the whiny-assed.  It is insane to complain that your enemy is doing things to you that you can't fight back against.  And to use that term for someone who commits suicide is the epitome of whiny.  Oh yes, kamikazes were masters of asymmetric warfare.  I don't think our parents complained about their deaths -- only about the ones they caused.



Remember, those who die in the execution of their tactics will not be making a second attack.  And quit whining.


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Bryan
EMAIL: bryan@dumka.com
IP: 207.30.162.106
URL: http://whynow.dumka.us/
DATE: 07/16/2006 11:00:18 PM
There are any number of effective tactics to combat asymmetric warfare, but they all involve a process that takes a minimum of a decade and involve civil affairs people more than combat troops.

If you treat it like crime, and pursue the "criminals" while avoiding harm to the bystanders, you will control the situation. Winning the "moral war" is more important than any short term tactical advantage. You have to change the perception of the enemy from "free fighter" to criminal.

If you treat it like combat, you will lose.
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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: jr
EMAIL: jrudy585@aol.com
IP: 64.12.116.11
URL: http://www.internetnewsdaily.com
DATE: 07/18/2006 10:06:04 AM
Good post
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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Scorpio
EMAIL: eccentric_00@hotmail.com
IP: 64.123.236.1
URL:
DATE: 07/18/2006 11:25:15 AM
Thanks!
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: One Small Action


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Economics
CATEGORY: Politics
CATEGORY: War

DATE: 07/18/2006 12:18:47 PM
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BODY:

I finally decided that the only sane reaction to the Middle East is "A pox on both their houses!"



So my response is  to buy either CITGO or BP gas from here out.  CITGO is number one because not only does it not come from the Middle East, it comes from Venezuela.  George Bush does not like Hugo Chavez, the president of Venezuela.  Therefore, buying CITGO has added political value.



BP comes from Canada and Britain, and is a reasonable alternative, though it is usually 4 or 5 cents a gallon more expensive than CITGO.



In any case, no more supporting the governments of the sand.


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Donna
EMAIL: dmariemart@aol.com
IP: 67.172.221.156
URL: http://dmariemart.wordpress.com/
DATE: 07/21/2006 11:22:41 PM
I totally agree - a pox on both their houses!
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Breathless


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Politics
CATEGORY: War

DATE: 07/20/2006 06:35:56 AM
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BODY:

For the last two days, CNN online had used extra large, all caps headlines for their lead stories on Lebanon.  The one this morning [at 6:00 AM CDT] shouted "MARINES IN LEBANON" on the front page, leading to the full story with a more reasonable headline on another page.  Is this the new method of panic-mongering?  Shouting?





The funniest thing about that headline is that the Marine's Hymn starts [caution! sound ahead!] "From the halls of Montzuma to the shores of Tripoli...."  Let me note that Tripoli is the second largest city in Lebanon.  Seems to me that this has happened before.  The words were supposedly written by a Marine in 1847, and the USMC copyrighted the song in 1920.



To some degree it makes me wonder why our battles have been in Lebanon for 150 years.



Marines in Lebanon -- who'da thunk?



________________


Commentor John replies that the Tripoli in the song refers to a place in Libya rather than the Tripoli of Lebanon.  Still, Marines have visited Lebanon on several occasions.  The CNN headline implied, via the huge typeface, that the deployment was for purposes other than rescue.   CNN needs to behave itself.






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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: John
EMAIL: John7519@adelphia.net
IP: 198.118.127.182
URL:
DATE: 07/20/2006 12:26:20 PM
Actually, the Tripoli referred to in the Marine Corps Hymn was one of the Barbary city-states of Northern Africa and is now part of modern day Libya.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/First_Barbary_War

Marines entered Lebanon in 1958:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lebanon_crisis_of_1958

and again in 1982:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lebanese_Civil_War

In 1958 one soldier was killed by a sniper, and in 1982 the Marines were part of a multinational peacekeeping force that was driven out by the locals.

The Marines have never fought a battle in Lebanon. Having been a Marine in 1984, I'm hoping they get the chance to kill hezbollah terrorists by the bushel.

John
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: At Least It's Cooler


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs

DATE: 07/22/2006 09:05:03 PM
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BODY:

Our temperatures went down from 20 to 30 degrees.  Power has had very short interruptions.  It could be worse.  Seattle is having Kansas temperatures, at 106.  New York is having power problems.  I am afraid this is a taste of things to come.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: It Must be Texas


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Law
CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 07/23/2006 07:03:05 AM
-----
BODY:

Here is an interesting take for a Sunday morning: Group: U.S.  military urged abuse in Iraq.   



Hm.  The techniques that were specifically mentioned in this story sound like some stories about the penal system in Texas.  So does this mean that the U.S. Military feels that Texas justice is an override to the Geneva Conventions?



What a country does within its own borders -- that is not goverened by the Geneva Conventions.  I wonder if, instead of the Nurenberg Defense [" I vas chust followink orders"], it would be possible to use the argument that one was only doing the job he used to do in Texas.  I am pretty sure that Amnesty International would judge Texas prisons to be inhumane. 



This reminds me of Bush prating about the sacredness of life (with live babies for wallpaper!) when he was the one who signed a bill to pull the plug on treatment of Texas hospital patients.



The schizophrenic behavior that Mr. Bush exhibits leaves a rational person asking "Am I crazy? Wait.  Am *I* crazy?" [paraphrase from Lois McMaster Bujold's A Civil Campaign].


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: More Summer Fun


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Humor

DATE: 07/25/2006 12:33:14 AM
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BODY:

How can anyone resist a video like this?



:)



~~~~~


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: To Craft a Noose


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Corruption
CATEGORY: Law
CATEGORY: Religion
CATEGORY: Reproduction

DATE: 07/25/2006 11:20:39 PM
-----
BODY:

Fetus on board will be a bar to crossing state lines?



Religion enshrined in law? 



The people who pass this kind of law do not believe abortion is murder, or they would put women and their consenting husbands and doctors in jail for murder.  All they really want is to persecute women, make sure that sex leads to conception, and make sure that the only ones who pay the price of these policies are women.



This is religion, forced on the US population under cover of a regard for life.  The folks who pass this kind of discriminatory and punitive legislation take regular glee in the torture of brown people in US custody most of the time.  And they think that civilian deaths in war are "breaking eggs".



They are craven, corrupt vessels.  If there is a God, may said God cast them into outer darkness forever, Amen.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Nooses For All: To Craft a Noose II


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Law
CATEGORY: Politics
CATEGORY: Rants
CATEGORY: Religion
CATEGORY: Reproduction

DATE: 07/26/2006 05:15:17 AM
-----
BODY:

What would equalize the responsibility of biological parenting?  What would link men as inexorably to their offspring as women are linked?

A Modest Proposal



In the US, young men are expected to register with the Selective Service  although currently there is no draft.  Still, the Selective Service is a potential instrument for  linking biological parents to their  offspring.  And for regular immigrants, each is processed through a bureaucracy.  Extending this proposal to illegal immigrants will be discussed later.



The proposal is to register every male into the selective service system at age 16, taking a DNA sample at the time of registration.  The Defense Department started taking DNA samples as long as 10 years ago.  This would just extend sampling to all citizen males rather than only to those who enlist.  A corollary proposal is to to take a DNA sample from every male who enters the US.



Now here is a beauty of a proposition: each male would be DNA linked to offspring, and required to provide support without begging intervention by the mother.  If both parents signed a child into adoption, this could be waived -- but every child would have an identified biological father.  These fathers would pay support to their offspring through the court system as soon as regular child support payments lapsed for three months.  If, at three months, it was found the father was unemployed, he would be drafted into the military to serve as well as he was able -- as cook, as driver, as groundskeeper -- wherever he could.  His child would then continue to receive support via his military pay.



And hey -- those with biological successors would at least have reproduced before entering a dangerous career.



To Be Continued     :)


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Time Out for a Musical Interlude


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Music
CATEGORY: Remembering
CATEGORY: War

DATE: 07/26/2006 06:53:08 AM
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BODY:

South Pacific




Song: 
You've Got To Be Carefully Taught


Cable:

You've got to be taught

To hate and fear,

You've got to be taught

From year to year,

It's got to be drummed

In your dear little ear

You've got to be carefully taught.




You've got to be taught to be afraid

Of people whose eyes are oddly made,

And people whose skin is a diff'rent shade,

You've got to be carefully taught.


You've got to be taught before it's too late,

Before you are six or seven or eight,

To hate all the people your relatives hate,

You've got to be carefully taught!


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Mimus Pauly
EMAIL: MockMed@aol.com
IP: 172.165.5.155
URL: http://mimuspauly.blogspot.com/
DATE: 07/26/2006 07:42:45 AM
That's good, but "Working Class Hero" is better...
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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Scorpio
EMAIL: eccentric_00@hotmail.com
IP: 64.219.130.223
URL: http://scorpio.typepad.com/eccentricity/
DATE: 07/26/2006 08:45:36 AM
Ah -- it's part of today's tour down memory lane. These songs were based in the era of WWII -- tout ca change, tout c'est la meme chose, eh?
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Nooses For All: To Craft a Noose III


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Economics
CATEGORY: Politics
CATEGORY: Rants
CATEGORY: Remembering
CATEGORY: Reproduction

DATE: 07/28/2006 08:38:02 AM
-----
BODY:

The US military.



I remember the military from when there was a draft.  Back then, KBR did not provide meals -- the mess hall, run and staffed by military, did the food for each unit.  KBR did not cut the grass on post -- either a detail did it or it was a regular job of a post maintenance unit.  And KBR did not ferry supplies -- a logistics unit did that.



It is time and past time for the US military to stop hiring costly and unreliable civilians to do these things.  No military unit would send empty trucks back and forth across the desert because they were paid per trip -- the particular corruptions of contractors would just not happen.



Even now, pictures of departing marines show very young men with very young children.  The military is used to making sure that these very young men allot support for their children, under penalty of law, or of a sargeant screaming at them.  Putting delinquent young men into a system that can ensure their compliance isn't the worst idea in the world.



And the military of that period had less groupthink than the current system has. 



But the best part about this kind of proposal is it gives a young man an involuntary 18 year commitment to being a parent who must provide for a child that equals the involuntary 18 year commitment of motherhood.  If young men realized that screwing without a rubber was a potential 18- year enlistment in the Army, it might do a lot to balance the scales.



:)


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Meanwhile ...


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Courts
CATEGORY: Law
CATEGORY: Travel

DATE: 07/28/2006 02:36:58 PM
-----
BODY:

Radley Balko is busy documenting the rise of Facism in the USA.  In this instance, it is the story of a man being rounded up and threatened for taking a picture when police cars converged on one of his neighbor's houses.



And then there is the decision by the Ninth Circuit Court that laptops can be randomly seized and inspected at the border -- and that US citizens have no privacy at border checkpoints.



Remember the following:



    

"We hold first that the ICE's forensic analysis of Romm's laptop was permissible without probable cause or a warrant under the border search doctrine," wrote Judge Carlos Bea. Joining him in the decision were Judges David Thompson and Betty Fletcher.


So much for the Fourth Amendment, suckers.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Can't Keep a Good Man Down


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs

DATE: 07/29/2006 11:43:28 AM
-----
BODY:


Senator Norman Coleman seems unhappy with his father's high jinks.  The 81 year old senior Coleman was cited for "lewd and disorderly conduct" for having sex with a 38 year old woman in a car.



The elder Coleman sounds like he's living an interesting life.  The Senator, on the other hand, sounds like a stuffed shirt, saying:

"I love my father dearly," the senator said. "I do not condone his actions or behavior, and I am deeply disturbed by what I have learned. He clearly has some issues that need to be dealt with, and I will encourage him to seek the necessary help."



I don't think ol' dad needs help.   Sounds like he's doing just fine, thanks. 


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: To All Who Revere Sites in the Middle East


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Rants
CATEGORY: Religion
CATEGORY: War

DATE: 07/29/2006 03:35:45 PM
-----
BODY:

Quite a long time ago I read a post that was designed to offend nearly everyone.  In light of current events, let me point to it:  If You Are A Christian, Muslim or Jew -- You Are Wrong.



It starts out:

We live in a twisted world, where right is wrong and wrong reigns supreme. It is a chilling fact that most of the world's leaders believe in nonsensical fairytales about the nature of reality. They believe in Gods that do not exist, and religions that could not possibly be true. We are driven to war after war, violence on top of violence to appease madmen who believe in gory mythologies.




These men are called Christians, Muslims and Jews.



It goes on in full rant, and so much of it is richly deserved. 



I one time told someone that no matter how hard he preached I was never going to believe in stupid stuff, like Satan putting shells in the Alps, a 6,000 year old Earth, or the direct forming of humans from clay and ribs.  I'm in the minority here.  Pity.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Truth in Advertising


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Corruption
CATEGORY: Economics
CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 07/30/2006 03:40:52 PM
-----
BODY:

Today Blah3 posted a paragraph about the delightful new way Frank Lautenberg is approaching legislation.



Having deplored the Healthy Forest bill that allowed the destruction of forest lands; and the Clear Skies legislation that permitted a rise in atmospheric mercury and particulates; it is time to applaud Lautenberg's attempt to apply truth in naming to legislation with the Lee R. Raymond Oil Profitability Act.



It would be good to name the latest Republican maneuver the "Paris Hilton Tax Relief Plus Crumbs For Workers Act" --  or  "The Have Mores Taxed Less And Workers Get Two (Taxable) Bucks  Act".


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Good Heavens!


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 08/01/2006 12:25:25 PM
-----
BODY:

Here it is the first day of August, and Bush has not even announced the start of his annual five week vacation yet.  His medical exam today says that he is well but...but....  Will the brush eat the Bush hacienda?  Will Crawford survive without the annual invasion by the press corps?



Is Bush afraid Cindy Sheehan will show up again...?


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Bryan
EMAIL: bryan@dumka.com
IP: 209.26.22.86
URL: http://whynow.dumka.us/
DATE: 08/02/2006 05:21:44 PM
I don't know why she'd be back, unless it's because she bought a piece of property that adjoins his.

He'll end up having to hide in Connecticut.

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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Erosion Politics


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Law
CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 08/02/2006 06:12:17 PM
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BODY:

I was reading John Scalzi's web log, Whatever, about the election of moderates to the Kansas Board of Education.  Of *course* the  blocking of crazies is temporary!  And we not only have a temporary blockage in Kansas, now we will have to block and block on a Federal level as well, because the nutbags have made it to the US political pinnacle with George Bush.



There's proof, if you will, that Bush is a nutbag.  The Chinese Water-Torture style of repeating issues over and over belongs to him and all his crazies.  No Estate tax break?  Bring it up again.  And again,  And again. 




How about show trials and indefinite imprisonment for anyone George decides is an enemy?  Well as soon as the current excuse is negated, invent another!  And the next doesn't even have to be different from the last one as long as someone *claims* it is.  How beautiful!  How exhausting to the opposition!




The definition of insane is repeating behavior, expecting a different outcome.  It is also the description of nutbag behavior, but ballot box exhaustion brings a miracle: the outcome *can* be different if enough opponents get tired.





I live in Kansas.



All of you live there, too -- trust me on this.  The ascendancy of the nutbags condemns all of you to perpetual vigilance or nutbag insanity.


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Bryan
EMAIL: bryan@dumka.com
IP: 207.30.119.231
URL: http://whynow.dumka.us/
DATE: 08/03/2006 08:55:35 PM
You have hit on a major problem: if things are going alone reasonably well people tune out politics and don't vote. The people who don't vote are essentially endorsing the status quo.

The problem is that this attitude leaves the door wide open for crazies from every side to win elections and remain in power for an extended period.

It has taken almost 6 years for people to figure out how screwed up the country is and start to figure out that they had better do something about it.
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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Praxxus
EMAIL: praxxus@gmail.com
IP: 128.10.242.151
URL: http://praxxus.blogspot.com
DATE: 08/04/2006 10:42:54 AM
Dammit! I don't WANNA live in Kansas!
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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: dragonet2
EMAIL: dragonet@kc.rr.com
IP: 65.26.97.216
URL:
DATE: 08/06/2006 02:31:09 AM
I'm glad I moved, even if we have our own nut cases. At least on this side of the state line being a democrat is not being a freak of nature.

(though I like Jim's mom's subversive estimate of voting: register republican, then vote for the dumbest turd they float for the election. And hope the dem candidate can prove they're better.
-----


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Nooses For All: To Craft a Noose IV


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Education
CATEGORY: Law
CATEGORY: Religion
CATEGORY: Reproduction
CATEGORY: War

DATE: 08/04/2006 04:56:52 PM
-----
BODY:

You would think the world had come a long way from a time when people could say "Guys can get drafted, gals can get pregnant -- it evens out."  Well, not only has it not evened out even half enough, there are many current attempts to take only the gal's side back to the dark ages.



There is no longer a draft in the US -- in case no one noticed.  Oh, the rich never bothered noticing;  they got someone to get them into the Guard, which never went anywhere because plenty of the poor were drafted to shield the Guard from any danger.  It is true that the Bush administration has just about driven the armed forces into needing a draft once more; but so far that has not actually happened.  So guys don't have to fight unless they volunteer.



What this administration did do was to cut off all aid to clinics and organizations around the world that even *mentioned* abortion to their clients -- and this happened the very first day George was in office.  One of my co-workers was aghast.  "I didn't think he'd do that!" she exclaimed, earning a very dirty look from me.  This made it less possible for contraception and other kinds of family planning to be dispensed.  In other words, "gals get pregnant" was boosted as a likelihood in all kinds of places that did not need a population increase.



This administration has also sponsored many measures designed to make pregnancy and disease more likely -- notably the funding of abstinence programs in lieu of solid contraception information.  "Keep it tucked" is piss-poor as information goes.  It makes it more likely that a person who trespasses will pull the "swept away by passion" idiocy and fail to use a rubber, take pills, or use any other reasonably intelligent preventive measure.  Becuase planning proves that one was not overcome by insane passion, planning tends to lose for people of that mindset.  And there are a lot of people who can only talk their way past their religion by pretending insane passion.  Their biology demands action, their religion forbids action -- the conflict does not make for reasoned behavior.



Gals not only get pregnant, the current administration and their religious whackjob cronies are trying to make it impossible for one to make that stop.  The particular targets are the young girls who probably need abortions more than they need children.  What thirteen year old needs to be a mother?  For that matter, what female under the age of 18 really needs to be a mother?  And what child needs to have her parents informed if a male relative is molesting her and her mother is keeping her eyes shut? 



And let us not start with South Dakota, where a fetus has more rights than a woman.  I won't enter the borders of that state until its citizens and their legislators figure out something to do with their lives besides dictate to women how their bodies are to be used.



More later, I'm afraid.



:)


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Lies and Damned Lies


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Corruption
CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Politics
CATEGORY: Rants

DATE: 08/04/2006 07:19:31 PM
-----
BODY:

The New York Times reports the defeat of the Twisted Republican Try to Eliminate the Estate Tax in such a way that it looks like Democrats voted against a raise in the minimum wage.  Bad journalism.   Later in the same story is the following:



“It is an excuse to make it a do-nothing Congress,” Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison, Republican of Texas, said. “And we are turning our back on the middle-class and poor people in this country who depend on the minimum wage and death-tax relief.”

That is not just stunning, it's a complete *lie*.  No one who isn't a multi-millionaire will benefit from the elimination of the Estate Tax.  The wonder is that eighteen families can make idiots like Hutchinson bend over for them and lie like rugs.  And as for the minimum wage, the poor will benefit to some degree, and the middle class will benefit not-at-all.  The darned wage won't rise fast enough to provide immediate relief; the scam that will impoverish waitresses and waiters is an abomination; and altogether, this bill was one more Congressional boondoggle.



Just who do these creeps think they are kidding, anyway?


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Donna
EMAIL: dmariemart@aol.com
IP: 63.98.144.242
URL: http://www.dmariemart.wordpress.com
DATE: 08/08/2006 04:33:59 PM
Unfortunately, these goons are able to pull the wool over the eyes of those who pay little attention to the details. Smart folks like you will catch on to their vile ways. I'm hoping those same smart people will vote for Democrats in November.
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Primary


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Corruption
CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 08/08/2006 01:52:16 PM
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BODY:

Missouri sort of runs its primaries as a free-for-all.  I have an evil acquaintance who is a registered Independent.  Being of the right-wing persuasion, when he showed up at the primaries he was permitted to pick a party, and he chose the Democrats so he could vote against those who were liberal.



Gah.



De-mockery-cy in MO.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Campaign Slogan


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 08/09/2006 08:59:32 PM
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BODY:

Only one Democrat running for Senator in CT:



Ned Lamont.



[And isn't it making the righties mad?  That is A Good Thing for sure!]


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: I'm With the Cynical


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 08/11/2006 06:53:19 AM
-----
BODY:

I would like to see a video of someone combining gel and a sports drink, then detonating it with a cell phone or an ipod.  Really.



I mean, it's not as if the government ever lies or anything, right?  They are always straight with us, and they are terribly protective, as well.



I'd even like to see a video of a solid plus hydrogen peroxide being combined and then detonated.  OK, so I have that unbelief that ritual church readings whine against.  I just don't believe them.  Until someone makes a video of an explosion, I'm just going to go on thinking that these guys are like the incompetent and still alleged (since he didn't actually manage to *do* it) shoe bomber -- unable to actually come up with an explosive that could knock a plane out of the air.  And what's this about banning books?  Do they think books can be made into macerated cellulose or something?  And if that's the case, what about airline magazines?




QUOTATION: Those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety.





AUTHOR: Benjamin Franklin (1706â€"90)




It looks like we're getting what Ben thinks we deserve -- neither liberty nor safety. 


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: pissed off patricia
EMAIL: nesters@bellsouth.net
IP: 70.146.21.166
URL: http://morning-martini.blogspot.com/
DATE: 08/11/2006 01:13:21 PM
I agree. We keep having to give up stuff and still no safer.

Remember those guys in Miami who got suckered into a trap by the undercover agent? Were those guys really going to blow up a building? I doubt it. That was considered foiling a terrorist plot too. Yes indeed we have reason to doubt
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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: dragonet2
EMAIL: dragonet@kc.rr.com
IP: 65.26.97.216
URL:
DATE: 08/11/2006 10:23:42 PM
Boing Boing posted that there was a possibility that it was the precursors of Zyklon B that they were going to smuggle aboard. Which makes the idiots at TSA even stupider because they are apparently dumping bottles with liquid into a slop bucket before discarding the bottles. (cyanide is relatively stable until it gets hit with an acid, which is why some people who take a cyanide pill don't die --their stomachs are defective....)

Wowie, zowie.
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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Bryan
EMAIL: bryan@dumka.com
IP: 207.30.163.134
URL: http://whynow.dumka.us/
DATE: 08/12/2006 08:29:07 PM
According to Wikipedia the stuff they were supposedly trying to make is not as stable as nitroglycerin. The more attempts to make it, the fewer terrorists to worry about.

Somebody else mentioned the dumping into a bucket. There are a lot of things that people might have a legitimate reason for carrying that should not be mixed as they will release noxious fumes. I hope they are dealing with that stuff as hazardous waste, or they are just annoying people.
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Good Idea


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 08/12/2006 02:03:12 PM
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BODY:

Today Avedon Carol at The Sideshow gives advice on dealing with Associated Press writing stories that are Republican talking points instead of news.



The customer is the newspaper or broadcast news organ that carries AP stories uncorrected. So when you see an AP story that does things like persisting in promoting a right-wing lie, it's not worth your time to complain to AP. It is worth your time to complain to the newspaper you saw it in and demand that they either get AP to stop doing it or they stop carrying the stuff.



There is so much Republican chaff out there that one has to make a start *some*where in cleaning up the news.  Fox is unlikely to change its tactics.  Other organizations are bent on carrying Cheney's trash talk and Bush's inane blather.  Nevertheless, it is worth complaining about a product that newspapers purchase.  Breaking up the monolithic spewing of talking points should be something we think is worthwhile.



If each paper, web site, and other outlet felt they had to write their own points, the smooth facade of the noise machine might actually get cracks in it.



Can't hurt to try.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: That Good Ol' CNN Question


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Rants
CATEGORY: Remembering

DATE: 08/13/2006 04:13:56 PM
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BODY:

Have you recently changed your travel plans to avoid flying?



I have hated flying for a long time -- since the day I took a flight from New York to Galesburg, Illinois that took 12 hours and 7 takeoffs and landings, the first several causing the sun to apparently rise and set due to altitude.  It would not have been so bad except that the pilot of the second flight just blythely overflew the destination and landed at a town three stops down the line, where we were forced to wait for permission from the CAB for the airline to make a special flight backward to deposit passengers at the towns he missed.  Not a bright day in aviation history.




So I have made my travel plans to avoid flying for many years now.  I've been able to haul lots of materiel and additional people for the same money I would have turned over to an airline.  I've flown exactly once since 2001, and I was searched at every possible stop.  That made me very annoyed, especially as those who fit a Certain Profile marched right on board unquestioned and unmolested.  Why not just make an *effort* to piss me off, I wondered.





No, the latest in nutsoid behavior matters not to me, because I'll be driving when I head out at the end of the week.  No "recently" about it -- flying sucks.


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Bryan
EMAIL: bryan@dumka.com
IP: 209.26.22.19
URL: http://whynow.dumka.us/
DATE: 08/13/2006 05:35:33 PM
I did the majority of my commercial flying back in the 1960s and early 70s when the seats were wide and the food was free.

Most of the flights were non-stop, even between medium sized cities.

I have flown three times in the last 10 years and the service went down and aggravation went up with each flight.

To hell with the airlines, life is too short to pay to be annoyed.
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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: dragonet2
EMAIL: dragonet@kc.rr.com
IP: 65.26.97.216
URL:
DATE: 08/15/2006 12:26:39 AM
I expect I know who Bryan is Except for the hellish flight to Boston this winter which was out of anyone's hands I've never had many problems until all this 'faux' security shit.

(I've flown probably over a million miles in my live, I've never ever been so afraid on a plane except maybe when I was twelve--I got sent ahead because we got bumped from a flight and I was old enough and sensible enough to get a cab home and let myself in-- and as the 707 was on it's landing approach to the old airport in KC a small Cessna dawdled across our landing path. The pilot hammered the throttle into full power, yanked the nose up and did a "do-over' landing. And apologized to us about it. (the 707 groaned like an old dog as hit it's max Gs, but it did t'job and got us around. I told papa to give the pilot an "atta-boy" when I next saw papa.

The flight to Boskone--I feel sorry for the pilot, because if the plane is bucking it's insecure for him as well as the PAX. There was a severe weather front between Detroit and Boston, and I could feel him trying to find a stable air layer to fly in, but there wan't one until about two hours out. And Margene got to see a near-hit lightning strike (airplanes create an ionization flow, because the pilot could not find a strike after we landed it probaby discharged in the ion flow.) But I've never been more scared on a plane because of the turbulence.

And apparently we got the few people at NWA that still give a shit, because staff people were attentive and caring. I've read on other blogs that their staff is often rude, because they've taken a 40-50% pay cut over the past few years to keep their jobs.
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Threats


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Politics
CATEGORY: Rants

DATE: 08/13/2006 07:23:07 PM
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BODY:

The US uses a simplistic color-coded scale to represent alerts.



Actually, there should be two different scales for our alert levels -- one for the threat level, and another for the paranoia level.   Rarely will the two match.   I'd say at the moment that the threat level was either yellow or yellow-orange, while the paranoia level is blazing red for air travel.






The paranoia level always spikes as the threat level actually *declines*.



These scales represent the comfort level of government toward air travel at the minute.  But what about other security issues?  Are they represented by the alerts?  Not only no, but hell no!  The only things represented are those that get Chimpy sound bytes in the news, and that afford Cheney the opportunity to shoot the patriotism of his political opponents in the face.



  There should, indeed, be more attention given to other means of visiting mayhem.  What about container ships?  I'd say the alert level is green for them, and the paranoia level is green as well; though it ought to be orange for paranoia, and the government should be looking into screening all containers, as Asian countries are now doing.  Containers are a huge opening that make the concept of security laughable.



All the shoes on all the conveyor belts in the world won't save us if a dirty bomb is smuggled in via container.  And all the color coding in the world won't save us, either.



 


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: dragonet2
EMAIL: dragonet@kc.rr.com
IP: 65.26.97.216
URL:
DATE: 08/13/2006 07:48:59 PM
Have you been following Making Light? From what Erik Olson said, whatever they thought they were trying to do, it would more likely have blown them up or at least injured them without much affect on the plane. (Mythbusters showed that the only thing that might depressurize a plane is actually affixing the explosive to a window and setting it off... they tried firing a gun, they tried a shotgun, a bunch of other things that pinged holes into the (internally pressurized to same level as aircraft at 30,000 feet) and it didn't make much difference until they did that.)


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Reasonable Conclusion


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Corruption
CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 08/15/2006 10:11:47 AM
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BODY:

I have finally come to terms with the phrase that administration members repeat over and over: "They hate us for our freedom."



The administration response to their own catchphrase seems to be to remove our freedoms one by one -- so we won't be hated, no doubt.



It's ironic that removing our freedom is one of the foremost things they do in response to moves by outsiders.  Restricting movement, eliminating privacy, spying, eavesdropping, searching without warrants, confiscating computers -- all in the name of "freedom."



George Orwell didn't go far enough.


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PING:
TITLE: Dog Days of Summer
URL: http://dmariemart.wordpress.com/2006/08/30/dog-days-of-summer/
IP: 72.9.234.70
BLOG NAME: Somnambulist
DATE: 08/30/2006 10:14:29 AM
If the administration starts using the word "fascist/ism" in reference to other groups/individuals, then how can they possibly be fascists, right?
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Evil Euphemism

ALLOW COMMENTS: 2
CONVERT BREAKS: 0


DATE: 08/17/2006 12:17:42 PM
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BODY:

You know, it is not possible for an adult male to "have sex" with a child of six who is tied up.  The accurate word for that is rape.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Disneyland


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Remembering

DATE: 08/22/2006 10:11:25 AM
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BODY:

Don't wait to see it until you are a senior citizen.



I once went to a Renaissance Festival that was so crowded it was a carpet of  people as far as the eye could see.  That is what Disneyland looked like yesterday.  It was such a bizarre and stirred up ant nest that I took pictures of it.   The Haunted Mansion was ok, and the Pirates of the Carribbean was lovely in places. 



The fireworks made me cry.



But on the whole... no thanks, not again.


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Mimus Pauly
EMAIL: MockMed@aol.com
IP: 172.164.21.33
URL: http://mimuspauly.blogspot.com/
DATE: 08/26/2006 01:01:57 AM
Never been to Disneyland, have no desire to go there. The animated films are nice, but I don't think I could handle some nut in a Donald Duck suit trying to ham it up with me in front of a bunch of people I don't even know in a cool-headed fashion. I don't do hamming, and tho I won't enjoy it, I will cuff the dumb son of a bitch in the damn ear if I have to.

My 2 cents.
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: World SF Convention


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs

DATE: 08/26/2006 11:13:21 AM
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BODY:

It's the next to last day of the World SF Convention.  I actually did stop in to see Kevin Drum of Political Animal.  There is a huge amount of stuff to see and do, and I won't find out about a lot of it until after it is over.  I'd go see Teresa and Patrick Neilsen Hayden, but they will be visiting Kansas City next May, so I can wait.



Kansas City is going through the process of bidding to hold the convention in 2009, and I am spending a lot of time doing things for that effort.   Too little sleep.  Lots to do.  Ready to start again today.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Home Again, Home Again


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs

DATE: 08/29/2006 09:22:39 PM
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BODY:

We drove from Los Angeles to Kansas City, returning from the World Science Fiction convention.



I did not attend much of the programming -- just a few bits.  I met new people and saw some old friends -- the usual mix of convention activities.   And now I am tired enough to just go to sleep.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Altitude


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs

DATE: 08/31/2006 07:22:23 PM
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BODY:

Maps that include the pass with the Eisenhower Tunnel west of Denver do *not* have a warning on them about crossing this pass if one is taking medications for certain conditions, or any other sort of warning.  Going through it, however, evidently gave me a hearty case of altitude sickness.  Since altituide sickness has symptoms rather like those of congestive heart failure, I went to the doctor today. 



I now have several sorts of things to breathe in over the next couple of weeks, and mild diuretics to get rid of the water in my feet and lower legs.  I'm mostly just grateful that it's something that living in the flatlands will take care of.



The World Science Fiction group voted to have the 2008 convention in Denver.  I probably will not be going because being even a mile in the air is likely to cause me problems.  So much for that -- no conventions for me in 2007 and 2008.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Digging Out


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs

DATE: 09/03/2006 12:06:26 PM
-----
BODY:

It has been really hard to return to "normal", whatever that is, after the trip.



Sickness plus  general exhaustion has made me uninterested in sitting at a PC to read the news -- or anything else, really.  I've read some weblogs, and some LJs -- but with long interruptions for naps.



Maybe tomorrow, folks.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Essential Definitions


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Corruption
CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Economics
CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 09/05/2006 12:52:34 PM
-----
BODY:

Mark Kleiman has posted an updated English-Winglish Dictionary.



It's hard to choose a single entry that tells you how good this is, but I really liked this one:

bankruptcy /n./ A means of escaping debt available to corporations but not to poor people.

I got to thinking about corporations the other day, and I realized they have too many of the privileges humans without the penalties.  They can kill humans with impunity.  They can waft their tax-entities offshore but continue to act as "citizens" who can be hired for defense contracts and other juicy pieces of pork.



They can't be put to death or incarcerated, even when they heartily deserve it.



They are overtly permitted to hire lobbyists to pervert the legislative process in their favor -- and against the health and safety of US citizens.  If there is a resource, they want a lock on it with no individuals allowed -- that is what Net Neutrality is about -- whether we will allow AT&T and other corporate monsters to lock the only free medium available at a reasonable price to almost anyone.



And too many congresscritters are paid-for slaves to these creatures.



It would be really, really nice if for each million in revenue they had to provide one live human piece of meat to stand for the consequences of their actions -- personally.  Preferrably the ones getting paid millions of dollars.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Coming Up


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs

DATE: 09/06/2006 10:27:43 AM
-----
BODY:

It actually surprised me to read that the anniversary of 9/11 was coming up.



I'm afraid that my reaction was devoid of emotion.  The idea of Bush makig a spectacle of the dead has become so old -- it's a wonder that any normal people are allowed within screaming distance of him.  A normal person would want to know when he was going to resign in favor of someone who knew how to do something besides dance on corpses, create more, and then dance on them.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Pushing


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs

DATE: 09/07/2006 04:23:26 PM
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BODY:

It's not just the Hallowe'en junk in the stores that is pushing -- the worst offender is my local Costco, which is all decked out for Christmas right up front.  They don't have the giant glass-ball-with-snow up yet, but they have lighted reindeer, Santas, snowmen -- it is appalling and obnoxious.



If I ruled the retail world, you wouldn't see that crap until the day after Thanksgiving at the earliest.



But then, if I ruled the retail world a lot of stuff would be banished and there would be a great number of unemployed Chinese and Ecuadoreans. 


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Bryan
EMAIL: bryan@dumka.com
IP: 209.26.22.245
URL: http://whynow.dumka.us/
DATE: 09/07/2006 05:23:36 PM
Sam's Club has had the stuff out for months already. Their story is that this is actually the stuff that was diverted last year because of the hurricanes and the shut down of New Orleans.
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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Donna
EMAIL: dmariemart@aol.com
IP: 63.98.144.242
URL: http://www.dmariemart.wordpress.com
DATE: 09/08/2006 03:19:34 PM
Wow. I'm going to repeat myself. Ditto. Amen.
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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: dragonet2
EMAIL: dragonet@kc.rr.com
IP: 65.26.97.216
URL:
DATE: 09/09/2006 10:15:16 PM
One of my neighbors has one of those fsking snowballs (got it last year, not up yet).

I like a certain amount of Christmas stuff, but I too would like it to at least appear in stores AFTER Samhain. Thanksgiving would be a good kick-off to the Christmas season, really it would.
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Prayer


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Religion

DATE: 09/08/2006 11:04:17 AM
-----
BODY:

Today Avedon Carol at The Sideshow takes note of the Worldnet Daily article "Why I am Opposed to Pre-Game Prayers".



I read this a couple of days ago, and my favorite paragraph was this one:



"We were frozen in shock and incredulity! What to do? To continue to stand and observe this prayer would represent a betrayal of our own faith and imply the honoring of a pagan deity that was anathema to our beliefs. To sit would be an act of extreme rudeness and disrespect in the eyes of our Japanese hosts and neighbors, who value above all other things deference and respect in their social interactions. I am sorry to say that in the confusion of the moment we chose the easier path and elected to continue to stand in silence so as not to create a scene or ill will among those who were seated nearby."

How delicious.   Now you know.  The very idea that anyone could believe something other than their particular myth  stuns the speaker into inaction.



I just wonder what other kind of action he might have considered appropriate -- and whether he would want such action administered to him and his co-religionists and shamans.  Standing in silence is minimum decency.  Leaving is also good.  Anything else belongs somewhere other than at a school activity.



Actually, I'm not sure that prayer in schools matters all that much. A fundie co-worker grew up where there was no prayer and no saluting the flag. My heathen self grew up where there was bible reading, prayer and flag saluting daily. I still don't believe it.




Inclusive/exclusive behavior takes so many forms in school that one more is ...just one more.  It might be a Good Thing for a lot of Christian brats to have to behave respectfully during praise of Buddah or Ganesh or whoever -- sort of a Golden Rule lesson.  Respect isn't something due unto only one group -- and the sooner fundamentalist Christians get that, the better.


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Donna
EMAIL: dmariemart@aol.com
IP: 63.98.144.242
URL: http://www.dmariemart.wordpress.com
DATE: 09/08/2006 03:18:13 PM
Ditto. Amen.
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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Bryan
EMAIL: bryan@dumka.com
IP: 207.30.206.129
URL: http://whynow.dumka.us/
DATE: 09/08/2006 08:24:22 PM
Now he knows what it feels like to be Jewish or Catholic when they read the Protestant version of the Lord's Prayer, or people start to reference the individual Ten Commandments by number.

No one should be forced to participate in a religious service of any kind for any reason. That's what the First Amendment is all about.

The other annoying thing is that the people who are pushing it are instructed by the Bible to pray in private as only hypocrites pray in public. They should at a minimum be consistent with the rules that supposedly guide their lives.
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Book Thingy


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Books

DATE: 09/08/2006 03:28:39 PM
-----
BODY:

Grrr ... yanno, Mimus, I read your blog yesterday and I *swear* my name was not on your tagged list.  Really.



I won't, won't, won't call these things memes, because memes are frames that propagate spontaneously.  But I will talk about books, especially considering that I wallow in them....





    A book that changed my life
...



let's let this one ride for a bit -- though it may have been Robert Heinlein's The Puppet Masters -- which turned me into a devoted sf reader.







    A book I've read more than once



The Mote in God's Eye by Niven and Pournelle -- space opera at its finest, and fie on The Dispossessed, the first book I ever quit before the end.





    A book I would take with me if I were stuck on a desert island



The big leather bound Lord of the Rings trilogy.








    A book that made me laugh



When Sisterhood was in Flower by Florence King -- I laughed very hard in many places.







    A book that made me cry


The Moon is a Harsh Mistress
by Robert Heinlein.







    A book I wish had been written



Let's leave this for now






A book I wish had never been written



Books purported to be the Word of God -- all of them.







    A book I've been meaning to read


The Girl, the Gold Watch, and Everything
by John D. MacDonald







    I'm currently reading



Space Cadets edited by Mike Resnick



And I have a pile of books lined up, plus a list of things to buy.  The World Science Fiction Convention is sort of a book orgy in its own way.  This year I was careful to dart in and target specific stuff.  If I am employed and I have lots of money, I drift, browse, buy ....



This year I won a signed copy of Anansi Boys by Neil Gaiman.  First time I have ever won anything, really.  Can't wait to find out who wins the EOS first prize(s) of a copy of all the books they publish during the coming year.  Now that would be delicious to win, and I'm as eligible as anyone.





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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Mimus Pauly
EMAIL: MockMed@aol.com
IP: 172.128.90.91
URL: http://mimuspauly.blogspot.com/
DATE: 09/08/2006 11:05:48 PM
Books purported to be the Word of God -- all of them

Oh, come on, it's not as if they're evil by nature!

All the same, a great list...
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Has Something Changed?


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Corruption
CATEGORY: Economics
CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 09/10/2006 05:06:49 AM
-----
BODY:

Gas is 2.37 a gallon today.  A mere three weeks ago it was verging on 3.00 a gallon.  I'm not aware of any new oil finds, the opening of new refineries, the drilling of new wells, the opening of the strategic reserve.



So why is it lower now?  And exactly why has it been way up for the better part of the last year?  To give Exxon record-breaking profits, no doubt. 



So now the scum are lowering prices hoping to encourage a Republican victory?  I hope all of you know better than to cooperate.


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Bryan
EMAIL: bryan@dumka.com
IP: 207.30.162.186
URL: http://whynow.dumka.us/
DATE: 09/10/2006 02:33:09 PM
Actually there was a new discovery in the Gulf of Mexico at a deep water site, but the real reason is that people started conserving and the inventory of unsold gas built up quickly.

They shut down refineries to switch to winter blends and fuel oil production and that's over, so unless the rhetoric on Iran ramps up again, things should be quiet for a bit.

All it will take a Gulf hurricane to get it back to $3+/gallon.
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Jealousy -- Sexual and Electoral


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Corruption
CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Politics
CATEGORY: Television

DATE: 09/10/2006 10:49:07 AM
-----
BODY:

Aw.  Those poor pieces of elephant.



It's really pathetic that commercials for the ABC Big Lie of 9/11 are so direct in pissing on Clinton.



It's bad enough that Clinton can walk the streets of Kosovo without guards -- whereas Bush has to sneak in and out of Iraq in the middle of the night, can only stay for an hour or two, and never has been able to visit Afghanistan.



The real stinger is that Clinton is still way over 60 percent in popularity, while Bush has been dragging in the middle 30's for almost a year now.



Ease and grace versus a fake Texas accent and a penchant for landing on his ass.  So of course, the answer is to try to destroy.  Do the hard core Republicans really think we are as stupid as they are?  Do they really think this will work?  Are they really that slimy?



Unbearable.


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Bryan
EMAIL: bryan@dumka.com
IP: 207.30.162.186
URL: http://whynow.dumka.us/
DATE: 09/10/2006 02:38:47 PM
I'm trying to figure out what's in this for Disney. How does the Mouse benefit by doing this? They have put themselves at legal risk for multiple libel suits as well as running this thing without commercials.

Where is the "return on investment" for stock holders? They could face a stock holders suit over that item.
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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: R Boone
EMAIL: arccinc@charter.net
IP: 75.109.80.116
URL:
DATE: 09/11/2006 08:12:13 AM
The truth really hurts, doesn't it?
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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Scorpio
EMAIL: eccentric_00@hotmail.com
IP: 66.142.56.30
URL:
DATE: 09/11/2006 12:26:57 PM
It hurts the Republicans so badly that they have to lie, cheat and steal to overcome reality.
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Oh Joy! Fake Holidays


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Random Events

DATE: 09/10/2006 04:27:40 PM
-----
BODY:

A friend of mine is a police officer.  He usually works in plain clothes since he is in administration rather than on the street.



Tomorrow, he has to wear a uniform.  Mandatory.  Why? "It's 9-11 ! "



At least he's cynical about it.



It's going to make a real difference that he's in uniform as he sits through all those Monday meetings.  Yes, it should make all of you feel so much safer!


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Pictorial Commentary


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Corruption
CATEGORY: Humor
CATEGORY: Weblogs

DATE: 09/10/2006 11:12:41 PM
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BODY:

Mouse droppings.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: No Crash Site Left Behind


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Politics
CATEGORY: Remembering

DATE: 09/11/2006 12:04:13 PM
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BODY:

Breaking news:



In an effort to make sure that all corpses were equally stood-upon, George Bush, his wife, and members of his administration are making a whirlwind tour of all the crash sites of September 11, 2001.  This is the first time Mr. Bush has missed going to New York itself for the anniversary date, probably because he was afraid of a backlash from hundreds of thousands of citizens who are downright sick of his platitudes, his smirk, and his milking of the deaths of others.



Really, if Mr. Bush wanted to honor the fallen, we would still be living in a country where he felt an obligation to obey the laws.  We would still be making a major effort to apprehend Mr. bin Laden, and we would not be waging a war of aggression in a place that had nothing to do with a major attack on our citizens.


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Donna
EMAIL: dmariemart@aol.com
IP: 67.172.221.156
URL: http://www.dmariemart.wordpress.com
DATE: 09/11/2006 08:25:50 PM
Yep, the whirlwind tour of disaster sites is nothing more than a whirlwind press jaunt.
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Al-Qaida Leader Speaks


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Politics
CATEGORY: War

DATE: 09/11/2006 07:05:44 PM
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BODY:

"Booga Booga!  Booga Booga Booga!!"



Our news media give it headline room.  Our president spends more attention on clearing brush than on hunting for bin Laden.   



If Bush really wants unity, he will cease to pretend there is a "war on terror", and start making all the reasonable moves to prevent acts of terror -- port security buildup and container inspection, practices that curtail the funds available to terrorists, and accepting the services of gay and lesbian Arabic translators instead of booting them out of the military.



He wants to be a "war president" so badly that he has gutted our armed forces, initiated violations of the law, and craves to hold show trials instead of actually behaving in a just manner.



On this anniversary, it behooves us -- not to just get mad -- but to get *furious* at how badly we have been "governed" -- if you can call it that.









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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: In Case Your Memory Has Failed


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Remembering

DATE: 09/11/2006 10:13:53 PM
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BODY:

this is what it was like then.  Just click on the picture pages to the left.



This is what it's like now.



A monstrous squandering of good will and of blood, treasure, freedom and justice.



Heckuvajob, Bushie.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Weapons Testing


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Corruption
CATEGORY: Politics
CATEGORY: Rants
CATEGORY: War

DATE: 09/12/2006 10:06:49 PM
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BODY:

Air Force secretary Michael Wynne wants to test "non-lethal" weapons on US citizens before deploying them in war.



Tell me, when was the last time there really was a large "unruly mob" in the US?  Geez, our population is so docile it's almost somnambulent.  Why do I get the feeling that this bozo wants to test it on peacefully-demonstrating people who don't agree with him?  The jokers who arrested thousands of citizens in New York during the Republican convention would, no doubt, have turned "non-lethal weapons" on the arrestees if they had had posession of such weapons -- and who would  make a superb test crowd for this pernicious slime?   



Do we really want to see weapons tests at the Republican convention in 2008?   Do we want the self-righteous  monsters who are currently in power to continue, to use their guns openly on those who oppose them?


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Donna
EMAIL: dmariemart@aol.com
IP: 63.98.144.242
URL: http://www.dmariemart.wordpress.com
DATE: 09/14/2006 02:49:31 PM
This smells Nazi. WTF!
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Karma Waiting to Happen


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DATE: 09/13/2006 11:53:33 AM
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BODY:

The Republicans must be awfully confident that Hillary Clinton will never be President.



The way they defend the most excessive invasions of privacy and the growth of invasive government just scream for a Karmic reversal, don't they?


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Finally


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Politics
CATEGORY: Religion

DATE: 09/13/2006 04:39:13 PM
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BODY:

Operation Rescue lost its tax-exempt status for its political activities during the 2004 election. [via]



About time.  I can think of a number of churches that deserve to be right behind it in line for such a decision.  Discussing principles is one thing.  Ragging on candidates is quite another.


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Bryan
EMAIL: bryan@dumka.com
IP: 207.30.118.153
URL: http://whynow.dumka.us/
DATE: 09/13/2006 07:46:50 PM
I view those people as organized crime responsible for three murders down in my area. Their biggest supporter is in prison for molesting young girls at his crisis pregnancy center.

These are the people that belong in Guantanamo.
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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Donna
EMAIL: dmariemart@aol.com
IP: 63.98.144.242
URL: http://www.dmariemart.wordpress.com
DATE: 09/14/2006 02:46:19 PM
YAY!
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Recipe for Disaster


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Corruption
CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Economics

DATE: 09/15/2006 12:29:35 PM
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BODY:

Ford Motor Co hired a new CEO, Alan Mulally,  and paid him 18  million dollars up front to take the job.



Now Ford is laying off another 10,000 workers.



There ain't no Lee Iacoccas there, oh no.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Perspective


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Corruption
CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 09/15/2006 02:16:32 PM
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BODY:

"Bush:  Time Running Out for Tribunal Bill"



Translation:  "Oh hurry, hurry and pass a bill that will relieve me of my criminal responsibility ex post facto, even though that, too is illegal!  Make our soldiers more vulnerable to torture.  Pretend that the law was wrong because I broke it and danced on the pieces.  If you don't do it before the recess for election, there may soon be changes in Congress, a group of new congresscritters with the temerity to try to hold me responsible for my actions.  As your king, I *command* you to do as I tell you!"



Kiss ass, George.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Blather


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Education

DATE: 09/16/2006 04:25:44 PM
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BODY:

CNN.com has a story on how upscale dorm life has become.



I hate to tell them this, but back in the 1960's Knox College provided maid service in the dorms.   Yes, maids to dust your dresser and clean your floors, provided for all students who lived in the dorms.  One did not have to pay extra for this -- after all, the school cost almost as much as Harvard at 3,000 a year....



And now CNN is reporting the stunning news that some students hire maids, or *pay* (gasp!) to have their laundry done.   Can you imagine?



They must be really desperate to fill the space alloted to news.


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Bryan
EMAIL: bryan@dumka.com
IP: 207.30.162.110
URL: http://whynow.dumka.us/
DATE: 09/16/2006 05:24:03 PM
We had maids in the dorms at Colgate University in the 1960s, mostly in self-defense as it was an all male school at the time, and extremely expensive, even with a full scholarship.
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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Steve M.
EMAIL: nomoremister@hotmail.com
IP: 162.83.182.109
URL: http://nomoremister.blogspot.com
DATE: 09/18/2006 09:27:36 PM
Harvard in the '50s had people cleaning the dorm rooms -- other Harvard students, the ones on scholarship. (My father-in-law was one of the cleaners.)
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Nothing Striking


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs

DATE: 09/18/2006 09:01:11 PM
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BODY:

The news is full of strange little bits.  Woman bites dog.  Don't eat spinach -- days and *days* of don't eat spinach, already.  The pope quotes someone who says offensive things about Islam.  Moslems riot.  Not news, IMO.



So I watch it parade by my eyes, but there isn't much to say about it. 


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Now Hear the Word


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 09/19/2006 02:55:29 PM
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BODY:

Olbermann again:


"Governments are instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed. That whenever any form of government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the right of the people to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new government.”




Those incendiary thoughts came, of course, from a prior holder of your job, Mr. Bush.




They were the words of Thomas Jefferson.




He put them in the Declaration of Independence.




Mr. Bush, what would you say to something that anti-thetical to the status quo just now?




Would you call it "unacceptable" for Jefferson to think such things, or to write them?



Of course he would, the little worm.



[via Hoffmania]


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: False Dichotomy


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 09/19/2006 04:46:30 PM
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BODY:

"Bush asks world to support democracy over terror" is what the lead-in headline says.  Bush's reported speech does not say that, but it says other things that are just not necessarily true.



As far as I know, "terror" is not a form of government.  It exists side-by side with democracy, with dictatorships, with juntas, with coalition governments.  We have terrorists is this country -- and they tend to be white males with loony ideas.  They bomb clinics, some bombed a federal building -- terrorists exist every place that people think they can advance an idea by destroying the property and lives of others.



Mr. Bush is less interested in stopping terrorists than he is in attacking governments that can't duck.  Once he actually gets serious about stopping terrorism, then I may be interested in what he has to say -- but right now he's just farting.


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Glen
EMAIL: barbyawp@nyc.rr.com
IP: 167.230.38.116
URL: http://barbyawp.blogspot.com
DATE: 09/22/2006 05:11:28 PM
No, torture is not a form of government. It has often been a tool of government, however. Now, that officially includes us. You'll excuse me if I don't break out into patriotic songs for a while.
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Vile


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Corruption
CATEGORY: Law
CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 09/22/2006 12:06:41 PM
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BODY:

Don't you just look forward to the day that Americans use the excuse of  "I vas chust followink orders" in their defense for war crimes?  It didn't work for the Germans at Nuremberg, and if the world is just, it won't work for those who follow illegal orders given by George Bush.



Congressmen "compromised" by dropping trou and bending over so Bush could claim "permission" to torture prisoners.  You know, there is nothing, nothing on this Earth, that makes torturing prisoners OK.  They can pass all the craven pieces of dung they want, and IT IS STILL NOT OK TO TORTURE PRISONERS.



Maybe there are pastors at the "churches" these alleged "Christians" attend who can put this message across.  God knows, the citizens of this country have failed to make the message clear enough.  If our Congress passes anything that allows torture under any circumstances, they are in the wrong and are potential war criminals themselves. 


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Donna
EMAIL: dmariemart@aol.com
IP: 67.172.221.156
URL: http://www.dmariemart.wordpress.com
DATE: 09/22/2006 06:04:23 PM
Yep, they're a bunch of friggin' war criminals!
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: A Minor Action


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Corruption
CATEGORY: Law
CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 09/22/2006 01:34:59 PM
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BODY:

I just wrote a letter to Harry Reid asking him to filibuster any attempt by Congress to redefine the Geneva Conventions to allow Bush to order torture of prisoners.



My Senators are hopelessly immoral.  Yes, they are Republicans.  Yes, they vote the party line.  I'd be happy to see them counted among the war criminals if they vote to make torture "legal".  Legal is in quotes because all the legislation in the world won't make it right, and will not make it acceptable under international law.  Squirming around the law and pretending that they are all right by voting in torture  is not acceptable. 



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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Avedon
EMAIL: avedon@cix.co.uk
IP: 80.229.133.49
URL: http://sideshow.me.uk
DATE: 09/24/2006 03:39:27 PM
Ah, you don't understand - they're not redefining the Geneva Conventions, now - they're just making it impossible to do anything about violations.
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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Scorpio
EMAIL: eccentric_00@hotmail.com
IP: 67.64.41.39
URL:
DATE: 09/24/2006 06:46:36 PM
Well, we can hope that these criminals travel to some country that has the balls to arrest them and send them to The Hague. Then we will see how well their wormliness shows.
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: The Big Why


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs

DATE: 09/25/2006 02:22:15 PM
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BODY:

Today at The Huffington Post, Norman Horowits discusses the way he views questions that begin with "Why?"



It is a pretty good analysis.  The impression I have always had of "Why?" questions is that they are less questions than demands that one justify, not only the item in question, but one's entire point of view, intentions, and life.



"Why do you ..." is an open-ended assault on the values of the person questioned.  Anything that can be framed starting with why could also be framed with a how or a what -- and the choice of why reveals an intent to attack that is not found in other question forms.  As Horowits suggests, the most frequent why questions  "were not really in search of information, but were rather covert statements of disagreement."



When someone asks you why ... beware.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Today


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Corruption
CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 09/26/2006 05:46:05 PM
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BODY:

The Rude Pundit contemplates whether we will accept becoming an evil nation.



The Rude Pundit is very goddamned right.  If you think God wants you to torture people, you are on the side of evil.  If your government wants to torture people, it is on the side of evil.   I don't want you to talk fatuously to me about a ticking bomb.  That is *not* going to happen in your lifetime.



And even if it were possible -- is it worth being evil, having slime in place of a soul?


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Call Your Senators for Free


CONVERT BREAKS: 0


DATE: 09/27/2006 11:48:33 AM
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BODY:

call your senator - toll-free Capitol switchboard: 1 866 808 0065 [Suburban Guerrilla]



Tell them torture is evil.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: The Stink of Fewmets


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Corruption
CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 09/28/2006 01:11:59 AM
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BODY:

You know, I just can't believe that any congresscritter would have the temerity to sing the old song about a piece of legislation not being perfect, but here it is:

"Is it perfect? No," said Rep. Mario Diaz-Balart (news, bio, voting record), R-Fla. "Do we have an obligation to pass it? Yes."

To that I say bullshit, sir.  It's your  job to craft decent legislation that does not endanger US citizens, that keeps this nation from bowing to the uncivil and evil urges of the current administration.



It is the job of you congresscritters to have some courage, some vision, some resistance to evil.  You certainly get paid enough!  Unfortunately, there are likely ten thousand hamburger-flippers with better ethics than the lot of you.   You smugly sit in Washington and discuss what torture tactics are acceptable.  You are so corrupt that you don't even see anything *wrong* with discussing such craven and  immoral  methods.



Well, "Honi soit qui mal y pense".



What goes around, comes around.  The torture of US soldiers will be on your heads.  It would be on your consciences if you had any.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Values


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Corruption
CATEGORY: Religion
CATEGORY: Weblogs

DATE: 09/28/2006 10:27:11 AM
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BODY:

While reading that incisive web log, Facing South, it occurred to me that it was really too bad that the Values expressed by Values Voters didn't include feeding and sheltering the poor, healing the sick, and stewardship of the Earth; but instead seemed to concentrate on Bashing the Fags, Prayer in Schools, and Ignorance About Reproduction.



The former could be supported by decent people -- and indeed, the candidates who actually espouse "Christian" values as outlined in the Sermon on the Mount seem to be the very people that these Values Voters scorn.  It's a wonder, isn't it?  And a pity, too.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Daily Senate Call


CONVERT BREAKS: 0


DATE: 09/28/2006 01:55:36 PM
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BODY:

As suggested by Blah3, I called Senator Brownback's office to ask for no votes on these bills mentioned by Caro:

To allow George Bush to detain and torture whoever he wants to detain and torture, and to absolve Bush and his administration for past detention and torture. (S. 3901 - Military Commissions Act).




To legalize spying on us without a warrant and give Bush immunity for past spying (S. 2453 - National Security Surveillance Act). The Bill of Rights Defense Committee says this bill is not dead yet. The Republicans want us to think it's dead so they can sneak it through.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: That About Sums It Up


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Corruption
CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 09/28/2006 09:02:48 PM
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BODY:

My senators have evil in their souls.  They have a lot of company.  It's my country.  It is wrong.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Charming AP Story


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Rants

DATE: 09/29/2006 09:23:49 AM
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BODY:

There is an Associated Press story today that has language that astonished me.    Here is the money quote:


The results provide new evidence that overweight or obese women who plan to become pregnant should lose weight, and that women with healthy weights should avoid packing on pounds before pregnancy, the researchers said.


Perhaps they could have put that more delicately: "refrain from gobbling like hogs" or "get their snouts out of the trough", for example.  What a disgusting and appalling thing for a reporter to write.  Perhaps this person will someday be visited by a physical condition that they cannot escape -- at least one can hope.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: The Gentle Cradle of Fantasy


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Corruption
CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Humor
CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 09/30/2006 03:32:41 PM
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BODY:

You know, in addition to having a tinfoil hat, everyone should be able to crawl into a cradle of fantasy and rock back and forth to its sweet motion.



Mine has recently yielded me something I never thought to see -- a happy, rosy vision  of Hillary Clinton as  a person who wins the office of President of the US.  Now mind you, I don't think that I would really want her as president, but if it were between her and the self-identified Cat Torturer, it wouldn't even be a contest.  And if it were between her and one of the suckers of the "McCain Torture Bill", it wouldn't be a contest either.  As a matter of fact, as things are shaping up, I might be forced to admit that she comes before any Republican I can think of.  And before John Kerry, too, the quitter.



So the fantasy starts with Hillary Clinton winning the White House.



Here, the happy fantasy has two different branches.  One is of a Congress screaming into  action to undo all the filthy legislation they so recently put in place.  Oh, the delight of Bushie having a choice of signing back in responsibility for torture and war crimes -- or of  having Hillary wield his powers.  My fantasy makes me smile.



The other branch, about as delicious, is where Bushie stamps his little feets and vetoes this emergency legislation because it would leave him open to prosecution for the crimes he has admitted to -- nay, bragged about, on national television.



Then it continues to a vision of Hillary with all the evil powers unleashed by the Rethugs awaiting her command.  I am sure you have visions of what the illegal wiretaps would reveal.  The tapping of computers.   How many Republicans tap out "What RU wearing?"  Oh yes.  I love your wrinkled, floppy paunch, Senator!  Let me lick your power!  [Let me copy the FBI!]



OK, so it's pretty disgusting.  But hey, a lot of stuff is disgusting these days. 


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: October


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Books

DATE: 09/30/2006 07:46:18 PM
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BODY:

Tomorrow is October first.  Do you, asks Sharon Lee, know where your copy of A Night in the Lonesome October is?



This book is one of the finest Hallowe'en books ever written.  It is one of the many reasons that I miss Zelazny so much.


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Bryan
EMAIL: bryan@dumka.com
IP: 207.30.163.41
URL: http://whynow.dumka.us/
DATE: 09/30/2006 11:37:13 PM
I have read the Amber series too many time to count.
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: The U.S. Constitution 2.0


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 10/02/2006 11:06:41 PM
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BODY:

Strict construction.


Via The Sideshow.


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PING:
TITLE: Contract on America, Constitution 2.0
URL: http://john.hoke.org/index/asylum/comments/contract_on_america_constitution_20/
IP: 63.247.139.55
BLOG NAME: John P. Hokes Asylum
DATE: 10/03/2006 01:57:57 PM
Via Eccentricity


Constitution 2.0 over at Political Cortex:


We the Republicans of the United States, in Order to prevent any challenge to our continued Supremacy, free ourselves from the Confines of Justice, placate the Tran...
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: That Ye Be Not Judged


CONVERT BREAKS: 0


DATE: 10/03/2006 02:10:56 PM
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BODY:

Do not -- for the love of your job! -- do not ever get a virus or a worm.  Especially if your company tells you not to go to certain web sites, and you do it anyway, either on purpose or by accident.



Someone I know got a worm on his PC.  His computer department took away the machine, supposedly to clean it.  The next thing he knew, he was going to lose his job for looking at "forbidden" web sites.  If a company doesn't do filtering, and one innocently clicks on a wrong link, one can lose their job.  If one clicks forbidden links on purpose -- well, where I worked, every day, you were shown a screen telling you what you could and could not do with mail and with the web, and you were required to click 'OK' to get past it.  That was a place where I never, ever used e-mail for anything but work.  I don't know what to say about willful violation of policy except don't ever, ever be in a position where the IT department can monitor your usage.



Cleared your cache lately?  What?  Never did?  Be innocent.  Be *very* innocent.



And even if you clear the cache, law enforcement has programs that will look into the trash to determine if there are any remnants that point to things that are forbidden.  I railed at this person about such programs.  He -- he wasn't exactly rude to me, telling me that they had the right to search whatever they wanted whenever they wanted, but it was damned close.  And now?  You know, it hurts a lot to watch when someone is destroyed, even when that person has defended the methods used in that destruction.



The Fourth Amendment has never applied in the workplace because all the machines belong to the Company, as do employees during their work hours.  And never, ever is there an out for lunchtime or break -- the machines, 24/7, belong to someone else.  Programs that search down into the old bits and bytes ... yes, I suppose that for work machines they are "legitimate" tools, even though I hate the very thought.



On the other hand, when the Ninth Circuit Court ruled that the man coming into the US with the laptop whose bad stuff had been erased, then recovered by Customs via software, was not safe from a search that delved into stuff in the trash -- that was very bad, that was totally unreasonable; it means that even if you click on something by mistake, if you get something unlawful on your machine, you are liable for it -- and that is insane.  That is unreasonable.



Today someone else has just found out about insane.  It's a hideous thing to have to learn.  We are not safe, not a damned bit.


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Scaramouche
EMAIL: scaramouchebog@gmail.com
IP: 68.121.111.69
URL: http://scaramoucheblog.blogspot.com/
DATE: 10/05/2006 10:11:07 AM
Great post.What I understand and most people do not know is that everything you do on the company's computer belongs to the company. There is no privacy in the workplace. The law states that (Well, every lawsuit about it does).

I used to make videos for the HR dept. Besides sexual harrassment (don't do it) the next message was be careful of what you do on the internet.

The legal experts were fond of saying, "If you don't want to pay for compensation look at the ex-employee's hard drive."


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Scorpio
EMAIL: eccentric_00@hotmail.com
IP: 66.142.229.85
URL: http://scorpio.typepad.com/eccentricity/
DATE: 10/05/2006 12:54:00 PM
Yes, and if you accidentally encounter bare skin, bail out instantly because your machine keeps track of time.

It occurrs to me that some guys have no real feel for what is pornographic, which is stunning.
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Yer Lyin' Eyes!


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Corruption
CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 10/05/2006 12:08:17 PM
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BODY:

The Poor Man has a *wonderful* mock of what the Foley IMs *really* looked like before Some Evil Person or Persons Unknown edited them into  an Awful and Incriminating  Attempted Seduction.   Reader discretion advised on the second link -- it's the report of part of the real IMs, and they are very creepy.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: "October Surprise"


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Corruption
CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 10/05/2006 04:03:11 PM
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BODY:

Is the "October Surprise" Rove discussed last month going to be a new low in international relations?  Does George Bush really plan to use small nuclear devices on Iran, either overtly or covertly?  [A "covert" use would involve lying about having done so-- a claim that radiation was released from the bombed wreckage of an Iranian site.]



Naval elements are converging on the Middle East once more, and it is unlikely they are doing so in order to provide transport to US troops as they withdraw from Iraq.



Do we have the courage to call an attack on another country with nuclear devices in the absence of a declaration of war a war crime?  Is this administration insane enough to think that such an attack would give them positive reinforcement?  Are the American people so bereft of intelligence that they would support such a thing?



Unfortunately, you can stay tuned to the news and you may find out.


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Donna
EMAIL: dmariemart@aol.com
IP: 67.166.168.4
URL: http://www.dmariemart.wordpress.com
DATE: 10/07/2006 10:24:59 PM
"Is this administration insane enough..." I think the answer to that is yes. Oh, and let's not forget what's happening in North Korea. Dick and Bush are probably drooling at the prospect of a world war.
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Sticking Point


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Corruption
CATEGORY: Current Affairs
CATEGORY: Politics

DATE: 10/07/2006 02:22:29 PM
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BODY:

Most polls currently show that a majority of people want the Democrats to take Congress in the next election. 



There's only one leeeetle problem with that.  A lot of people will want to get rid of the "bad" Republicans but will also want to vote for *their* local Republican congresscritter because they consider him/her to be "one of the ones that is ok". 



That vote for an "ok" one is going to collide directly with the desire for change.  For this election, it might be a Good Thing to pretend that there are no "good ones" left -- 90+ percent of them voted for torture.   90+ percent of them voted for limitless wiretapping -- free fishing expeditions.  90+ percent of them rolled up the Fourth Amendment.  If that is "good", it boggles the mind to try to envision *bad*.



So go to the polls, but do not send your particular criminal back to represent you.  He or she is not really *good* -- not with that kind of record.


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: The Truffle
EMAIL: msrobin_2001@yahoo.com
IP: 4.231.238.54
URL: http://thetruffle.blogspot.com
DATE: 10/07/2006 09:41:32 PM
There are just so many scuzzballs in Congress now that it's hard to find any--on the GOP side, at least--who aren't total stooges, Abramoff buddies, or just plain slimy. The GOP scandal parade just keeps going and going. Where are these "okay" congresscritters?
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Well, the Earth Shook


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Current Affairs

DATE: 10/09/2006 12:46:02 PM
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BODY:

for the North Koreans, anyway.  The link is to a map of the Korean peninsula showing the "earthquake" that resulted from their bomb test.   Why anyone would think that the posturing of George Bush would have discouraged them I don't know -- though the opinions of China and Japan might have given them pause.  But no, Kim Jong Il is nothing if not madly determined to show he is made of the sternest stuff. 



So it will be interesting to see how this plays out.  Maybe many million Chinese will just walk in and swarm Korea into submission.  Maybe someone will make a pinpoint attack and remove the Mad One from power.  Maybe everyone will talk and talk and do nothing.  Or, as Steve at No More Mister Nice Blog reports phleabo saying, maybe Bush will do the logical thing and attack Iran.



Gaaah.


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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Whopper after Whopper


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Corruption
CATEGORY: Current Affairs

DATE: 10/11/2006 09:47:25 PM
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BODY:

Big drop seen in winter heating bills





Budget deficit lowest in four years
  -- you know that this has been achieved by leaving out such little gems as the cost of the Iraq war and anything else that the cheaters can pretend is not part of the budget.



Jesus!  Does CNN ever do anything but spin?


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Mimus Pauly
EMAIL: MockMed@aol.com
IP: 172.164.200.93
URL: http://mimuspauly.blogspot.com/
DATE: 10/13/2006 07:42:24 PM
Yes. They air commercials now and then. :-)

Totally off-topic: Don't know if you got my e-mail. But I'm looking for a few co-bloggers on my own site, and you're one of those bloggers. Are you interested?
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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Scorpio
EMAIL: eccentric_00@hotmail.com
IP: 65.64.102.229
URL: http://scorpio.typepad.com/eccentricity/
DATE: 10/14/2006 09:49:38 PM
Thank you! I've sent you a 'yes' to that invitation. I hope you have a wonderful vacation, too.
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AUTHOR: Scorpio
TITLE: Lies, Damned Lies, and Business as Usual


CONVERT BREAKS: 0

CATEGORY: Corruption
CATEGORY: Current Affairs

DATE: 10/14/2006 04:42:12 PM
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BODY:

All the way up through the evening news, the wire services were claiming that the North Korea bomb test showed no radiation. Then as the Friday evening news was over, came the turnabout -- there was radiation consistent with a nuclear test.



A week of lies.



Lucky us.


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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Bryan
EMAIL: bryan@dumka.com
IP: 207.30.118.169
URL: http://whynow.dumka.us/
DATE: 10/14/2006 09:24:43 PM
I would really like to study the wind charts for the Korean peninsula for the last week before I bought that one. For a number of reasons I have to question the presence of "radiation" because that isn't what those fly-by missions generally look for after an underground test.

Unless the North Koreans did the world's worst job in sealing the test, there shouldn't be detectable radiation.

The "radiation" report may be a mistake on the part of whoever leaked, or of the media, but you are looking for specific gases in the atmosphere that mark nuclear tests, and they aren't radioactive.
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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Scorpio
EMAIL: eccentric_00@hotmail.com
IP: 64.218.107.131
URL: http://scorpio.typepad.com/eccentricity/
DATE: 10/15/2006 08:27:45 AM
http://www.cnn.com/2006/WORLD/asiapcf/10/14/nkorea.sanctions/index.html

a little more than halfway down the story. Not that I think Negroponte's office is brilliant, but he's not usually a major liar.
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COMMENT:
AUTHOR: Bryan
EMAIL: bryan@dumka.com
IP: 207.30.119.194
URL: http://whynow.dumka.us/
DATE: 10/15/2006 08:57:27 PM
That would indicate fallout, and the South Koreans and Chinese should be reporting something soon, because that has to be cleaned up, like the results of the Chernobyl meltdown.
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