The Keys Diet Experiments
Would you like some fat sauce with your fat, fatty?
Championship Belt-Holders of Irreverent and Offensive Commentary
Would you like some fat sauce with your fat, fatty?
There's been a lot of hubub about the Omnibus bill. Here's the summary and a full list. My personal favorite is 3 million dollars to the Center for Grape Genetics in Geneva, NY. Because god knows we need to crack the grape genome. There is a million dollars for a B.B. King museum. Not that B.B. King isn't a great man, BUT COME ON.
Staunchie has a great post about Ukraine, Russia, et al. The best part of it is this:
I think Bush would have been great representing big business, possibly as a strike breaker. Oh wait...
Planet Rock. Frantic Situation. Renegades of Funk. Looking for the Perfect Beat. Unity. Jazzy Sensation.
Big news that I coincidentally missed because of thanksgiving. Big, big news. Thank god for futurepundit. On wednesday it happened, the first "M Prize" was awarded by the Methuselah Foundation. To those of you who don't follow anti-aging news (which would be everyone except for maybe me, Glenn Reynolds, and Futurepundit), the Methuselah Mouse competition is a radical notion. Basically, it involves being able to reverse the aging processes in already aged mice in a way that potentially could turn and be used on human beings. Futurepundit has blogged about it constantly, and it's basically a chance to get over some of the heavy stigma that is attached to anti-aging research (which of course the bible-thumpers would never allow the federal government to fund). Similar to the X-Prize, this is a chance where private interests have funded a research bonanza to fill in for neglect by the federal government.
Will British politics push in a direction to mirror American politics? Iain Duncan Smith wants it to. The Culture War in the US may continue to have global ripples if he gets his way and the Tories attempt to remake themselves in a more Republican image. The Tories are headed for an even bigger whalloping in the election, especially now that they've alienated their American "allies" the Republicans by having their leader criticize Blair's job with Iraq. Duncan Smith wants to see more reaching out to blue collar Britons by pushing conservative values, claiming that is what helped conservative parties in America and in Australia. My personal take is that Duncan Smith has no idea what he's talking about. While he has some points, I think Blair has done a better job of monopolizing "values talk" than anyone in the world, by promoting pretty much sensible centrist values. If not for Iraq, Blair would probably not have much in the way of any political liabilities, and even that enormous unpopularity in Britain is hardly even damaging him.
The Bush administration obviously has a thing for “sick” people. No, I’m not talking about “sick” in a Jeffrey Dahmer kind of way. God forbid the Bushies would actually have the heart for people like that. I’m talking about those 45 million plus Americans that don’t have health insurance. Add to that number the millions of Americans who would LOSE health benefits via their employer once business expenditures on health insurance become taxable, and what you’ll have left is a country rife with the sickest of the sick in the physical, mental (from the stress of paying for medical bills), and, most importantly, financial sense. This move goes beyond a budget breaker, especially for those of us with families. Hopefully, lawmakers in Congress will see that in addition to their reckless financial record for the past few years, taxing employer medical expenses will only add to the world of hurt that the middle class already experiences. And unlike all the talk about our worsening national debt situation, this is one bomb that won’t be passed onto our children.
Shameless promotion time:
In the Crossfire… Dan Rather, the voice of the CBS Evening News for a generation, is calling it quits. But what will be his legacy be in the anchor's chair? Will it be his career of hard news and daring coverage or some of the controversies that have clouded his career lately? Will his reputation forever be linked to the bogus "CBS memos" targeting the president's National Guard service? Did he merely get burned by bad sources or was he trying to influence the election from a news desk? Were his stories colored through a liberal lens? Also, the Rather debacle begs a larger question - is the news media in general too liberal? Too conservative? And what impact does it have on society?
I once mused with a friend over the consequences of heavy drinking and the brain cells it kills, and wondered whether it really does make you stupider. This friend of mine speculated that "the herd is only as fast as its slowest members," so killing off the weak links through drinking might make you actually smarter. Comforting. Turns out we were both wrong, drinking may not kill brain cells at all! Thanks, Ann.
The Afghani-Pakistani struggles continues to teeter and take wild turns, and while violent is moving in a good direction for every sane person in the region and bad for the Islamofascists. Offensives in Afghanistan continued as Coalition and Afghani troops desperately raid the country in search of hostages. The raids were a success in rooting out a lot of enemy fighters, but the finding hostages part of it didn't go quite as well. Also, the Taliban holdouts in Waziristan have not been faring well, and have been instructed to avoid conflict with Pakistani troops. That's what generally happens when you're basically being totally contained. This may signal that the Taliban is retreating to regroup and launch another round of insurgency back in Afghanistan, or more likely and hopefully that they're just plain retreating. Iraq is a different matter though, yet again. The Independent's interview with the British army's leader is telling and again provides a refreshing British perspective on the war. At least they unloaded some debt.
Could you imagine John Kerry doing this as President?
To beat Detroit. And take over the most dangerous city title. Who wants to bet a bunch of cheap housing suddenly became available in Camden, NJ? The property values are going to drop faster than one of the Bush twins after a tequila shot.
Why am I not surprised something like this has happened before? I guess the biggest shocker is that the incident actually wasn't in the South. I attribute that to the Southern tradition of responsible firearms ownership. Really. But seriously, shooting each other over your spot? Wow. The fact that they called other hunters for help and they were also shot by this mystery cabin squatter is also amazing. Deputy Zeigle summed it up well when he said "It's absolutely nuts. Why? Over a tree stand?" Indeed.
UVA's savior in ACC basketball this year: Sean Singletary. In UVA's upset win over Arizona yesterday, the first year TRUE point guard shined like no other. 3 steals in less than two minutes, the victims being two the All-American backcourt of Stoudamire and Shakur? Devin "Herniated Disc Jockey" Smith the high scorer for the game? Un-freaking-believeable.
I'm pissed that no one mentioned James Carville's outrageous performance on Meet the Press last weekend. Click through to see the gloriousness that we all missed. (This picture has not been photoshopped.)
Like me, all you ed. policy freaks out there will love this one, courtesy of one of George Mason University's finest:
Or are we just left with sequels now. As much as I'm ashamed to admit it, I watched part of all these movies. Centipede! (note the exclamation mark) was classic, complete with the animatronic Centipede that looked like a reject from a Universal Studies Ride. Why would I do this to myself? Mostly because it was the same sensation you get watching Nascar, waiting for the next absurd crash and mutilating injury. Here was Thursday's All-Star Lineup:
I once saw Steve Spurrier, back when he was Florida coach, decide to run an unusual play. Up over 30 points, on the last play of the game, Spurrier called a reverse flea flicker for a touchdown. That pretty much defines heartless, sore winner. Needless to say I never liked the man before that, and wanted to see him go down in a hard way after that. And if anything, his disastrous time with the Redskins should have meant the end of his career. But now. . .he's back. It'll at least be nice to see the buyer's remorse on the South Carolina fans' faces in a year or so.
Snaps to W. for saying classy, nice things about his predecessor. While it was expected that the man would have to say something nice, Bush went well beyond what was necessary. And even though he's naming a lot of yes men to his now-vacant cabinet posts it is reaching out to the other side. Maybe we will see more bipartisanship. Probably not, but you know what, I'm just hoping at this point. I need something to believe in.
At least the heated-political-discussion-roiling-the-dinner-table type:
Talking Turkey: Tips for Talking Politics at the Holiday Table; Author Offers Advice to Get Through Post-Election Holiday Season
11/18/2004 8:40:00 AM
To: National and Assignment Desks
Contact: Kim Fuller, 918-289-9450
-- Talking Turkey: Tips for Talking Politics at the Holiday Table
-- Author Donna Zajonc Offers Advice to Get Friends & Families Through the Post-Election Holiday Season
WHAT: Donna Zajonc, author of the new book "The Politics of Hope," provides advice for negotiating the potential hazards of post-election political discussions at the family table. Zajonc letter to editor, "Post-Partisan Depression" was recently published in the Washington Times.
WHO: Donna Zajonc, a certified political leadership coach, a former mental health nurse, was elected to three terms in the Oregon State House of Representatives starting at the age of 28. Zajonc co-founded the Bainbridge Leadership Center in Washington State.
BACKGROUND: A noted political leadership coach, Zajonc has a few recommendations to help friends and families bring political issues into the open at the Holiday dinner table, listen carefully to one another's opinions, and go home with a deeper understanding of differing points of view.
"Talking Turkey: Tips for Talking Politics at the Holiday Table"
Going home for the holidays can be stressful under the best of circumstances and this year could be more emotionally draining than usual.
This Thanksgiving comes only 23 days after a divisive presidential election. Americans will meet around the table with differing points of view and, perhaps, lingering raw emotions. Some may still be choking on their losses, while others will want to crow about their successes. The combination could be a nasty case of heartburn.
If potential political strife could damage your holiday harmony the following tips may bring you relief.
-- Be a Compassionate Winner
-- Listen Before You Talk
-- Stay Calm Even When Attacked
-- Be the Peacekeeper
Thanksgiving is a time to reflect on the things in our lives for which we are grateful. At the dinner table, invite your friends and loved ones to join in this reflection. We live in a country where diverse political opinions are the foundation of our freedom.
Donna Zajonc is the author of the new book "The Politics of Hope." She may be reached at http://www.politicsofhope.com .
The complete essay "Talking Turkey: Tips for Talking Politics at the Holiday Table" can be found at the Web site.
/© 2004 U.S. Newswire 202-347-2770/
It's no question that John Kerry has expanded his profile on the national scene. While I still maintain that his candidacy was doomed from the beginning because of his the no-talent ass clowns runnign his campaign, Kerry still churned out a worthy performance. He managed to lose graciously and to that I must tip my hat. But lets get one thing straight here. If Kerry decides to run again in 2008, I will move heaven and earth to make sure that he comes nowhere close to being the Democratic nominee. But why wait until 2007 to begin the backbiting? Lets start the beatings now!:
No how much of a partisan you might be, the whole changing of Republican Party roles just for Tom DeLay stinks. The dilemma, of course, was that rules required all leaders to relinquish their positions if facing felony indictment. DeLay hasn't been indicted yet, but of course the notion of being deprived of "The Hammer" is too fearful to even contemplate. At least the votes weren't unanimous, that would've just been too much.
So today I'm sitting in Rosslyn waiting to be picked up by the always overcrowded, sweaty, nasty blue line, when I saw something on the light up sign that drove me wild. "8 Car Train". I always knew it was possible, but I'd never seen one before. The hulking behemoth rolled into the station and I had to marvel at it. It really was end to end of the entire Rosslyn tunnel ready to pick people up. My question is: is this permanent? And if it is, thank you Jesus. I finally won't have to have an old bald man's armpit rubbed in my face while I'm trying to hang on passing through Arlington Cemetary. I might actually get a SEAT.
Well, that's that. I felt it obligatory to write a post on Mr. Powell's exit, since he was probably my favorite Republican until around this happened. One of the choicest lines Powell ever had was in reference to a reporter's question on how Saddam Hussein must feel after 9/11 and if he had any consolation for America. It went something like this: "I don't think the man has the slightest milk of human kindness flowing through his veins." Warrior-poet indeed. Powell caused a lot of serious problems, had a lot of flaws, and at times rolled over for Rumsfeld at exactly the crucial moments when he should've said something. All the same, he was a voice of reason throughout his entire career. Domestically, his attitude was communitarian, a voice always calling for really leaving no child behind and a stress on reasoned values. Powell also always presented a specific brand of hawkish pragmatism abroad, with the infamous Powell Doctrine of overwhelming force and clear exit strategies as a student of Vietnam. Of course Rumsfeld didn't believe in such things so we didn't see that this time around. He'll be missed, and it's a shame most of reputation was slowly destroyed, and in under a year's time. He even attempted the obscenely daunting task of modernizing a dinosaur like the State Department.
Folks over at the Centrist Coalition called the bloggers on Restless Mania "ornery". Go figure.
...in many state laws is palimony.
With that, I have exercised my once-a-year pass to side with a Hollywood liberal on something.
NOVEMBER 11--Comedian Bill Maher was slapped yesterday with a $9 million palimony suit by an ex-girlfriend who alleges that the HBO star subjected her to physical and verbal abuse, including "insulting, humiliating and degrading racial comments." In the below Los Angeles Superior Court complaint, Nancy Johnson, a centerfold model and former flight attendant also known as Coco Johnsen, alleges that Maher, 48, reneged on promises to pay her expenses and purchase a Beverly Hills home. Johnson, who says she dated Maher for 17 months before splitting from him in May, also contends that the performer promised to marry her and have children. Johnson, pictured at right, does not detail the degrading racial comments allegedly made by Maher, and recounts only one episode of supposed physical abuse by the host of HBO's "Real Time." She charges that Maher pulled her arm and shook her at one party, causing "injuries to her back and neck," and later that evening warned he'd hit her on the head with a hammer if she was unfaithful. (10 pages)
Eulogizing an international thug, terrorist, murderer, and grand embezzler:
"Yasser Arafat's death marks the end of an era and will no doubt be painfully felt by Palestinians throughout the Middle East and elsewhere in the world," Carter said.
"He was the father of the modern Palestinian nationalist movement. A powerful human symbol and forceful advocate, Palestinians united behind him in their pursuit of a homeland," he said in a statement distributed by his Atlanta, Georgia-based Carter Center.
He said that while Arafat provided "indispensable leadership to a revolutionary movement" and played a key role in forging a peace agreement with Israel in 1993, he was excluded from negotiations in recent years.
"My hope is that an emerging Palestinian leadership can benefit from Arafat's experiences, be welcomed to the peace process by (Israeli) Prime Minister (Ariel) Sharon and (US) President (George W.) Bush, and be successful in helping to forge a Palestinian state living in harmony with their Israeli neighbors," Carter said.
Social Security ... the new hotness.
Remember how we previously poked fun at bloggers who subjected the world to asinine posts? Well, this post offically makes me part of the club.
Yes. I won't shut about the dollar. Daniel Drezner thinks it's worthy enough to talk about too. China is starting to unload the stock of dollars it has built up, and that's not good news. India and Russia are joining the fray as well. If the Hedge Funds get involved, we could see not a neutral slow decline of the dollar, but a freefall. As much as Skywalker wants to talk about how GREAT this is for our economy, I have strong doubts that a freefalling currency value is something to celebrate or ignore. Most of the reason I think this is because we're a company addicted and dependent on imports, the cost of which could rise explosively.
I don't care how much bread this guy rakes in, this was an asinine waste of money even had Bush LOST the election. I'm sure he thinks it's a cute marketing gimmick, but is that really the kinda crap you want to pull when Republican bar tabs pay the bills just as well as Democratic ones?
• Speaking of taking a flier: Disconsolate Democrat Bill Duggan, who owns Madam's Organ restaurant and bar in Adams Morgan, has sent us two unused AirTran tickets, one-way from Washington to Houston. They're in the names of George W. Bush and Richard "Dick" Cheney. "We were feeling so confident of change that we bought the tickets for them to return to Texas on the first flight out on Nov. 3," says Duggan, who spent $238.40 on the nonrefundable, nontransferable tix. "I'd hate for them to go to waste," he told us yesterday, asking that we offer them to the White House. (Sure thing, but don't those guys have their own airplanes?)SOURCE: Richard Leiby, The Reliable Source column in the Washington Post for 10 November 2004.
For entertainment purposes, I'd love to see John Kerry carry out his threat. Begin his 2008 presidential campaign now and deliver weekly sonorous stemwinders on every conceivable domestic and foreign policy issue from the Senate floor. Then he can vote for the bill(s) in question, then vote against it(them), and then spend the rest of the week playing two-hand touch football with staffers and the Heinz boys. (Hmm, I wonder if Alexandra and Vanessa can cheer from the sidelines...)
Fifteen years ago today, the Berlin Wall was felled. My calendar notes this as "World Freedom Day" in celebration thereof. The late Great Communicator, who urged and prophesied the destruction of that odious Wall is honored today with the unveiling of a new US postal stamp bearing his image this afternoon (2:30 p.m. Eastern) at his presidential library.
Ronald Reagan Postage Stamp Unveiling: On November 9, the 15th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall, the United States Postal Service will unveil, for the first time, the artwork for the new Ronald Reagan postage stamp. The stamp will not be available for sale until mid-February.
The event will be attended by Mrs. Reagan and Mr. John Potter, the Postmaster General. Monica Mancini will perform.
This event will be held on the Library's replica of the White House South Lawn and is open to the public. This event is free to attend, however regular admission fees apply to enter the Museum. In addition, complimentary shuttles will run on Presidential Drive.
Disclaimer: Again, here is the last in my three part series on party positions and footholds the Democrats should rethink in the wake of Election 2004. As I said before, I don't think there is a need for the Dems to radically remake themselves, simply that some of the party's dogma, which in my mind has already been slipping and come under attack recently in the party, should be rethought, recast, or discarded. This piece partially relates to yesterday's piece on how Dem's may want to move away from a party that back federal interventions and federal superiority, to one of advocating decentralization and a balance in favor of state and local government (as the Republicans once did). Today, I attack the biggest chunk of the federal government: Entitlement Programs.
Joe Scarborough has a blog on MSNBC now! I have to admit, even though I disagree with a lot of what Joe says, I'm totally riveted by the man's comments, even though of course he voted to impeach my favorite President. Anyone who wants to read sensible, conservative critique should check it out. I watch Scarborough's show often, and he's no Faux News blowhard. He's a conservative who has no problem having a nice, calm discussion with rabids like Alterman (another favorite extremist of mine from the other side) and Co. MSNBC's news website is quickly becoming my favorite, and its opinion bench has gotten deep with the adding of Olbermann's blog and now Scarborough.
To those like Ken and Skywalker who seem to be painting some sort of sore loser from this election, I say that if I really was a sore loser, I'd be talking up and tossing around stuff like this conspiracy theory of election stealing. But I'm not. Really.
Conservative religious folk don't take too kindly to liberal politicians hijacking Scripture to justify big government. The reason so many evangelical Protestants and lay Catholics are conservative in political temperment is because their understanding of Scripture militates against trust in earthly princes, but commands total trust on a sovereign God.
Thank you Mr. Proliferation, for providing a brilliant example (in the previous post) of Mr. Brooks, in his article, is talking about.
More brimstone bible-thumping
Disclaimer: I repeat my first disclaimer. This is again I think one of the major issues Democrats need to think about, and how it should revolve in their party. It is the second in my three part series about these issues. Yesterday I just about touched (or did touch), the third rail and talked about the Dems ferocious pro-Choice nature and how they might think of loosening that somewhat.
Disclaimer: Everyone now gesticulates and bloviates about how the Dems need to change direction after this election. In most senses, I think that's idiocy. Everyone points to this 3 point defeat in the Prez election and the Senate losses and is ready to label the Democrats extinct. For all purposes, I hope the Republicans make such a tactical error. At the same time, the D's were WAY MORE in danger in 2001-3. They were a party that was looking pretty damn irrelevant after 9/11 and the 2002 midterms, and yet they came back, won two Senate races, and only lost by 3 million votes (less than the population of Northern Virginia.) So the Dems should make some minor retooling, that I agree with, but the party has come a long way since they had their asses handed to them in 2002, and I think it would be a mistake to scrap a lot of the good things that come out of this. So here, I will begin a three part series on issues I think the Dems need to work on. The first one is a big one. Abortion.
Everyone and their mother has linked to this post by the Backseat Philosopher. Read it twice, and call me in the morning.
The folks over at Centerfield are having a -ahem- field day with this election. (John Edwards trumping Jack Kemp as the worst VP candidate ever? Locoh-Mohsin, would you like to grace us with a rebuttal in the court of public opinion?).
In your spare time, take a gander at Slate's series of articles that attempt to answer the question on every Lefty's mind: Why do Americans hate Democrats? Pay particular attention to the pieces by Roberts Reich and Wright. Got morals? Apparently, the Democratic Party could use some of them in the next election. Paging Joe Lieberman...
Saw Saw. Honestly, not a bad flick. It was a creative movie, and involved a time distorted-fragmented story (seems to be all the rage now, I'm starting to miss linear movies) with a lot of plot twists. The movie was well-directed, had some sick camera angles, and a generally creative script that borrowed a lot in my estimation from old Hitchcock films. At the core of Saw is the Jigsaw Killer. Instead of normally killing people in a trademark way, this gentleman puts individuals with some major vice that amounts to a way in which they don't fully appreciate their life (a la Seven) in a sadistic trap that will kill them very shortly if they don't manage to figure their way out of it. Only one of his victims has managed to do so as the movie begins.
I could easily vent tonnage of rants and anger about this election, but I have to look on the bright side. Now I can for four more years unmitigably criticize the man I work for, the organization I work in, and those generally in power. Oh, and the dollar has fallen dramatically in reaction to this. Good news everyone, all those imports we binge on will get even more expensive! As far as I think the best complete roundup of analysis is, the crown goes to Howie Kurtz. He gets the shades of bloggers, newspapers, politicians, and others. I normally think of Howie Kurtz as the man who defines Conflict of Interest, but this roundup is good work.
Now that the elections are over, it's time for our elected officials to finally act like grown-ups. Required reading for the day, brought to you by El Wapo:
Cynical Optimist and I started the night out at our friend JM's place in Crystal City, ye olde towne of inspiring architecture. Our political ranting began immediately once C.O. drank numerous Smirnoff Ice's in rapid succession (Yes Cynical Optimist, is in fact, a woman). There was some confusion amongst our party as to whether or not I'm married yet, which I cleared up immediately (For all intents and purposes, YES I AM HITCHED.). Some discussion about party-hopping between Dem and GOP get-togethers became our focus, but was eventually drowned out by our argument about MSNBC's first electoral predictions of several East Coast states.
Kerry earns his scooby snack today by conceding "early". Even if you hate the guy, you've got to admit, that's a hell of a lot classier than what happened in 2000.
I'm not one to gloat, but it looks like my predictions were the closest (Even though it looks like my total electoral votes number was off a bit):
It's over for me at least. Lined up at the polls at 6:30 AM at West Springfield Elementary, and an hour later, I slapped the requisite "I VOTED TODAY" sticker on my shirt pocket. The crowd was definitely bi-partisan, a good sign especially in Virginia. I'm just worried that the long lines will actually discourage voters, especially first timers, from filling out their ballots. And we all know that the larger the turnout, the better the results for the Democrats.