Thursday, June 30, 2005

Pelosi still clueless about War on Terror

Could she get it less?

House Dem Leader Nancy Pelosi issued a response to President Bush's speech on Iraq, specifically criticizing his remarks about 9/11 and its role in changing our perspective on global terror.

"The President's frequent references to the terrorist attacks of September 11 show the weakness of his arguments. He is willing to exploit the sacred ground of 9/11, knowing that there is no connection between 9/11 and the war in Iraq."

Yeah, Nance, I suppose that' "no connection" thing is true -- in the same sense that the Germans had nothing to do with the attack on Pearl Harbor. Yet, we went to war against them as well as the Japanese and Italians in WWII.

Perhaps it was because then as now, some people understood that the conflict and the dangers were far broader than a single event.

Nancy also criticizes the president for not outlining an exit strategy for Iraq.

Exit strategies are for losers. We intend to win.

What I can't figure out is if she's cowardly, stupid or both.

Iranian Terrorist Now President

Only in a Iran can an idealistic young kidnapper dream of becoming president one day.

Reuters reports that for former U.S. hostages held in Iran 25 years ago have identified Iranian President-elect Mahmoud Ahmadinejad as one of the hostage-takers -- "hardline" guy who humiliated them.

Since Amnesty International has declared humiliation of Gitmo inmates by the U.S. military an atrocity, one wonders how long it wil be before they single out Ahmadinejad for the same thing.

Actually, one doesn't wonder and is not holding one's breath.

Still think Iran isn't part of the Axis of Evil?

Wednesday, June 29, 2005

War on course? Ask those who pay the price.

If you want a good assessment as to whether we're following the right strategy in Iraq, it's not a bad idea to ask the people doing the bleeding and dying.

Reaction from soldiers who fought in Iraq tilts toward Bush following his speech last night at Fort Bragg, saying we need to finish the job, according to accounts published in the New York Times, the San Diego Tribune and others.

"He hit it right on the head," said Petty Officer Jesus Garcia, who recently returned from Iraq and may be sent back. "We've got to stay there. Our mission will be complete when we feel the Iraqis are ready."

Among Iraqis, opinions are mixed, but many say that while they don't like the war and aspects of the American presence, they don't want the U.S. to leave.

No Veggie Burgers at Garden Shows Either, I'm Guessing Then..

Those PETA guys, they just never quit, now protesting the sale of fish entrees at an aquarium.

"Serving fish at an aquarium is like serving poodle burgers at a dog show," says Karin Robertson of PETA's -- get this -- Fish Empathy Project.

Uh huh.

Geez, you'd think they'd be too busy butchering abandoned animals and throwing the body's in dumpsters for this kind of nonsense.

What never ceases to amaze me is how predictably the media falls for this crap from PETA -- seems like every publicity stunt they pull get's coverage. I'd never get away with that.

Tuesday, June 28, 2005

SacBee Hack Faked Sources

Okay, this isn't good. The Sacramento Bee says it can't confirm the identity or existence of 43 people quoted in columns by former staffer Diana Griego Erwin.

Erwin, a Pulitzer and George Polk award winner, resigned for "personal reasons" in May after the Bee tightened up its policies on anonymous sources and found discrepancies in her writing dating back 12 years.

Erwin's response the continuing investigation: "The story has been told and I am sad that The Bee continues to pursue this. Surely there are more important stories out there than another about me. I know there are. Even now, I come across them every day."

Really? Found more important stories? What's she been working on lately?

Stories more important that journalists breeching the public trust and making stuff up...nope, nothing more important comes to mind.

Monday, June 27, 2005

Lieberman's Mother Passes On

Senator Joe Lieberman's mother, Marcia, has passed on.

I frequently disagree with Mr. Lieberman's political views, but he has always struck me as a moral, decent man -- somewhat of a rarity for a senator.

Prayers and sympathies to the family.

Voices of Piglet., Tigger Die

What great sadness, but John Fiedler, who lent his voice to the Winne the Poo character Piglet, and Paul Winchell, who voiced Tigger, have both passed on.

I remember watching Mr. Winchell perform regularly on his Winchell-Mahoney Show on TV when I was a kid. It was a regular for me, right along with Soupy Sales and Wonderama.

He was a very talented ventriloquist, who created characters Jerry Mahoney and Knucklehead Smith.

Mr. Fiedler was a popular character actor -- a slightly portly, balding and spectacled fellow -- was a regular on a wide range of TV shows, from the Odd Couple to Star Trek to Bob Newhart.

Sorry to see them both go.

Tuesday, June 21, 2005

My hotel in Mexico City -- the Four Season. Beautiful hotel in the a lovely part of the city. Marathon day today -- exhausted, but having fun. Posted by Hello

Monday, June 20, 2005

Hola from Mexico

Blogging from Mexico tonight -- here for the week to visit our team in Mexico City and Guadalajara.

Staying at the lovely Four Seasons hotel and had a wonderful dinner tonight, visitng with our country communications manager -- great guy.

I love visiting new places -- I find it invigorating.

Friday, June 17, 2005

PETA Murders, Dumps Animals

You just can't make this stuff up.

Psst...Did you hear the good news?

Not if you've been reading the mainstream media apparently.

NPR correspondent David Folkenflik noted in a report this morning that most U.S. news organizations failed to report on positive developments in Iraq, such as the introduction of new currency, the resumption of mail service and the restoration of cell phone service.

That nugget was tucked into his report on allegations that management at U.S. government-run Voice of America is asking reporters to *shudder* inject more balance into their coverage.

One former VOA employee interviewed expressed her shock -- SHOCK -- that the VOA board of directors are actually giving direction on how VOA should be run.

Um...isn't that what they're supposed to do?

Gosh, reporters being expected to do balanced reporting. Media managers actually providing direction on how things should be done. What is this world coming to?

These are not surprising developments -- we all know reporters list toward stories about things that are bleeding or on fire.

But someone in those news organizations has an obligation to step back and make sure that coverage is balanced and provides an accurate picture of what's going on -- seeing the forest for the trees, as one of my own editors used to say in a not particularly original but illuminating way.

Columnist John Leo noted Afghan media reported recent rioting that killed 17 people was not in protest of alleged Koran abuse at Gitmo, but rather was stirred up by Al Qaeda and Taliban agitators as show of force. But no U.S. media picked up on that.

He also noted that the U.S. media has been largely silent on reporters' union President Linda Foley's unsupported accusations that U.S. soldiers are deliberately targeting and killing journalists -- only the Chicago Sun-Times has reported on the issue, and Boston Globe technology columnist Hiawatha Bray has blogged it.

Why aren't the New York Times, CBS News and the Associated Press reporting on these issues?

Thursday, June 16, 2005

Saw another today. Some poor guy driving down the highway, still sporting a Kerry bumperticker on his car. Seven months after the election.

Now, it's a free county, and people have a right to vote for whomever they want. But to still be riding around with the sticker of the guy who lost seems kind of silly.

I dunno, maybe the think they're being defiant or something. But I just think it makes them look goofy.

Sort of liking having a bumpersticker on their car that says "Loser." Or, perhaps more sadly, "I Don't Matter."

Move on, .org.Posted by Hello

Tuesday, June 14, 2005

Michael Jackson Found Not Guilty

There. Now, can we all get on with our lives?


Monday, June 13, 2005

It's the Eden D210XST speaker cabinet, which I run along with a D115XLT, driven by my WT-550 head. This is THE cab, IMO -- equipped with heavy duty 10-inch cast-frame speakers and a horn, it can handle up to 450 watts. Frequency response goes down to 3o Hz -- that's actually LOWER than the 1x15 cab -- while still producing a tight, middy punch. Sounds great as a solo cab for smaller gigs. Maybe the best cab I've ever owned. It's the nuts!

Sunday, June 12, 2005

Dean Unrepentent

Okay, I might as well had made the headine "Sky Not Falling" or "Today Is Sunday," right? I mean no surprises here.

Despite awkward shuffling of feet and throat-clearing by fellow Dems over his divisive and insulting remarks about Republicans, Dem Party Chair Howard Dean says he's going to keep going.

First, Dean -- who I refer to as "the David Duke of the Left" -- called GOPs lazy and dishonest with his "never made an honest living" remark. Then he called them "a white Christian party" -- sounds awful close to White Aryan Nation. How far is that from calling them a bunch of Kluxers?

Yet fellow Dems have a hard time distancing themselves from his bombthrowing. "We can use some of your passion," said Rep. Leonard Boswell, D-Iowa, in his best June Cleaver impression ("That's very interesting music you boys are listening to...").

Tough to not back him since they picked him though.

And thus the Democrats continue their march toward irrelevance.

Thursday, June 09, 2005

A 1940s taxi Cuban refugees converted into a boat and used in a daring attempt to flee Castro's dictatorship for America. They were intercepted by the Coast Guard. Not the first time desperate Cubans have attempted this. Is it just me, or don't these seem like the kind of people we'd WANT to let into America? Hardworking. Innovative. Industrious. Yearning to be free. As opposed to ingrates like this. Go figure.

UPDATE -- They're letting the Cuban's stay in the U.S.Posted by Hello

Elizabeth Butler: Did your parents know?

The Journal-News continues reporting on the murder of 17-year-old Elizabeth Butler, reportedly stabbed and strangled to death by her 27-year-old former boyfriend, Ariel Menendez.

Memendez is accused of attacking her in her family's car, parked in the lot of the local market where she worked.

I can't imagine the horror and agony this family must be going through right now -- her parents discovered their daughter's body. And I have no wish to inflict any more pain or guilt on them -- I'm sure their suffering enough.

But as a parent, one questions just nags and nags and nags at me: who let's their 17-year-old daughter date a 27-year-old man?

Tuesday, June 07, 2005

Kerry Dumber Than Portrayed

John Kerry, so often portrayed as being ever so much smarter than George Bush in the election run-up last year, in fact had a nearly identical grade-point average to his opponent while at Yale, the Boston Globe reports today.

The information appears as part of Mr. Kerry's military records, which the former presidential candidate finally agreed to release. Throughout last year's election, while his partisans repeatedly attacked President Bush's military record and while he campaigned on his own military career, Mr. Kerry had declined to release his military records.

Oddly, the records provided no significant new information about Mr. Kerry's military service, and certainly no explosive revelations, prompting speculation as to why he waited so long. In fact, if released during the campaign, the records might have been used to answer some of the charges from his critics about his service.

Getting back to his academic record, among other things the transcripts show Mr. Kerry racked up four D's in his freshman year, had an overall cum of 76 -- one point lower than President Bush -- and never rose above an average of 81 for any year of his undergraduate career. Not unusual for your average college student, but somewhat astounding for someone who later would be portrayed as the intellectually superior choice for president.

And thus another liberal myth comes crashing down.

A photograph of a mass grave in Northern Iraq holding the bodies of about 2,500 people, including women and children, murdered by Saddam Hussein. The civilians were shot in the back of the head and shoved into the grave with a bulldozer. Just in case you forgot why we're in Iraq. Posted by Hello

Monday, June 06, 2005

Dems Condemn Dean

I don't know whether it was a pang of decency or they finally woke up to what a nut he is, but prominent Democrats Senator Joe Biden and former VP candidate John Edwards both criticized Howard Dean for his verbal attacks on Republicans, reports the Associated Press.

Comments made by Dem Party Chief and former Presidential Candidate Dean that provoked the response included a remark that Republicans "never made an honest living in their lives."

"[Dean] doesn't speak for me with that kind of rhetoric and I don't think he speaks for the majority of Democrats," said Biden, while Edwards remarked similarly, "[Dean] is not the spokesman for the party."

While attempting to distance themselves and their party from Dean, however, they apparently forgot that "spokesman" is pretty much the job description for a party chief.

Dean later revised his "decent living" remark, saying he wasn't talking about "hard-working" people, but the Republican leadership.

Thanks, for clearing that up Howard.

Next thing you know, he'll be telling me I'm a credit to my race.


Today is the 61st anniversary of the Allied landing at Normandy -- the beginning of the end for the Nazis. The allies reported 10,000 casualties that day, including 2,500 killed.

I can't help feeling tremendous gratitude to those brave young people who fought and died to protect our freedom, just as they do in Afghanistan and Iraq today.

Some unanticipated nice weather on Saturday, so I waxed the Olds. I use Duragloss products -- very easy to use and they produce a fantastic, lasting shine. My Dad turned me on to them about 15 years ago. Posted by Hello

Saturday, June 04, 2005

I wonder how the Tripp for Felt will Feel

Now that Watergate snitch Mark Felt has outed himself, I wonder how he'll be portrayed in the popular media.

Chicago Tribune columnist John Kass draws an interesting comparison between Felt and Clinton Oralgate informant Linda Tripp, noting that both did essentially the same thing -- they exposed a U.S. President who broke the law. In Nixon's case, the charge was obstruction of justice. In Clinton's, it was perjury.

Will Felt now become a favorite punchline of the late-night comics. Will we see frequent derisive comics about him on the editorial page. Will he be parodied on Saturday Night Live.

That's what happened to Linda Tripp.

Till now, while he hid in anonymity, Felt has been portrayed heroically -- the Washington insider who risked much to right a great injustice and expose evil.

Will that change now that he has revealed his identity, particularly given his motive for coming out -- to get a book deal and make some money?

Doubt it.

Friday, June 03, 2005

Animal Nuts Claim Terror Constitutionally Protected

Six animal rights activists charged with acts of terrorism in New Jersey are claiming their free speech rights are being violated, says Reuters.

The charges resulted from actions taken against pharmaceutical firm Huntingdon Life Sciences, which conducts animal testing.

And just exactly how were these folks exercising their "speech" rights? By invading offices, damaging property, stealing documents and -- get this -- spraying cleaning fluid in the eyes of Huntingdon workers, smashing the windows of their homes and threatening to kill their families.

Someone's been watching a little too much HBO -- normally, stuff like that happening in Jersey is more closely associated with the Sopranos.

I'm not really sure how attempting to blind someone qualifies as "speech," but hey, what do I know?

The group charges that they are being targeted as part of a Bush administration crackdown.

Sounds like we're going after the right people.

Is there a draft in here?

Congressman Charles Rangel has reintroduced a bill to reinstate the military draft, the New York Daily News reports.

This is the second time the antiwar Democrat has introduced the bill -- he did the same thing last year in an attempt to whip up hysteria about the war and win votes for John Kerry. Didn't work then either.

All the hand-wringing about how the the Bush administration is "gonna" resinstitute the draft, yet the only one proposing it is a Democrat.

And hey, if it didn't work the first time, why not try it a second time? There's some logic for ya.

No wonder these people keep getting their butts kicked in elections.

Thursday, June 02, 2005

An Afghan child, injured in the recent suicide bombing at a mosque in Kandahar. Just in case you forgot who we're fighting against -- people who blow up churches full of civilians. Posted by Hello

Wednesday, June 01, 2005

Watching the Eagles Farewell I Tour on TV. Great songs from a great band. Looks like it's Henley, Frey, Walsh and Schmit on the tour. Good lineup. Great touring band too -- fat horn section. So many memories of their music from when I was a kid. Posted by Hello

"Deep Throat" Revealed

After more than 30 years of rumors and speculation, the identity of Wash. Post Watergate unnamed source "Deep Throat" has finally been revealed, says CBS News.

Former FBI #2 man Bernard Felt outed himself in Vanity Fair magazine as the anonymous source for many tips to Post reporters Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein, who's reporting helped unveil the workings of the Watergate conspiracy and contribute to the deserved downfall of President Richard Nixon.

As portrayed in their book, "All the President's Men," W&B and Felt would arrange to meet via signals (a potted plant on a patio, etc.) and confer late at night in dimly lit parking garages. W&B swore not to reveal Felt's identity until after his death, and kept their word until he revealed himself. Very cloak-and-dagger.

The event ushered in an era of using unnamed sources in stories -- a sometimes necessary tactic for journalists, but one whose standards and integrity have eroded over the years. Witness the recent Newsweek Koran-desecration fiasco recently.

As I told a reporter one time, I understand why journalists use anonymous sources sometimes -- to get at stories that otherwise might not be gotten. But doing so is kind of like buying street drugs -- there's no one to guarantee the purity of what you're getting, and you bear all the risk.