Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Happy New Year!!

lm currently en route to the Big Windy for my annual New Years pilgrimage.. Something that has been happening on the maternal side of my family now for over 80 years. I'm blogging off a blackberry now, but I'll post more on this later.

Meanwhile...best wishes for a blessed and peosperous New Year, to one and all!

Superman to Super Pimp?

I was motorcyclimg around St. Cloud when I passed the corner of 25th and Division, by the Dairy Queen, when I happened to spot our friend, ourlocal St. Cloud Superman; only this time he looked more like a graduate of the Velvet Jones School of Technology than he did Clark Kent

Curiosity got the better of me, so I decided to ask him, "What gives?!?"

He told me that he was pimpin' "...just to keep people guessing. A pimp is the antithesis of Superman. I'm for freedom of speech and expression"

The guy has a point.

Anyway, ya gotta give a guy credit who dares to be different. As always, Superman, a/k/a was extremely cordial when I asked him to take this photo.

More power to you, Clark Kent!

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

A sad day...


I just got back from the vet after putting Husky (my greyhound) down....

I was with him and held his head in my arms as he died.

He was such a good dog, ... God I loved him.

Losing him was almost as bad as losing my dad earlier this year.

When I came home from my hip surgery a few years ago, he never left my side.... he would allow himself to be used as a support when I needed to get up...it seemed he would sense when I needed him.


I'm missing him terribly already.

Friday, December 26, 2008

Obama and Rezko: Peas and Carrots?

It would appear that the Obama's Hyde Park mansion in Chicago may not be the Obama's after all.

WND reports:
An attorney for convicted fundraiser Tony Rezko is listed as the owner and taxpayer for Barack Obama's Chicago mansion, according to records obtained by WND.

William Miceli is a lawyer at the Chicago law firm Miner, Barnhill & Galland, which also formerly employed Obama.

The controversy began when a website called News and Commentary for Thinking People published a 48-page document that lists Miceli as the owner of the Obama home at 5046 S. Greenwood.

Miner, Barnhill & Galland was Obama's employer when he did extensive legal work for Rezko, who awaits sentencing after he was convicted in June of fraud, money laundering and bribery-related counts.

Yeah. I know. Obama didn't know; he was just a poor, well-meaning, unfortunate dupe in this whole mess.

Great judge of character, that Barack Obama is.

Man, he'll make a great President.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Eartha Kitt passes ad astra...

Eartha Kitt, fabled Hollywood sex-symbol and siren, is dead at 81.

She was a singer and actress who rose from South Carolina cottonfields, but I mostly remember her for her role as Catwoman in the 1960s Batman series:

To borrow a famous line from Mae West... "When I'm bad, honey....I'm good."

A glimpse of my childhood...

Anyone who grew up in 1960s Chicago remembers that every kid in the neighborhood would run home after school so that he or she could watch Garfield Goose and Friends, with Frazier Thomas. During the Christmas season, Frazier would feature these animated shorts, and us kids just ate them up-- here they are, in all their stop-action, low-tech glory! Ladies & Gentlemen, I present Hardrock, Coco & Joe, and Suzy Snowflake:





Geeze--and how could I have forgotten Frosty the Snowman:

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Merry Christmas!

I heard this song on our way home from Arizona today... It's truly a classic that bridged the gap between the World War II generation and the Baby Boom generation, and its message is timeless:

Friday, December 19, 2008

A Blessed and Joyous Christmas


I'll be going out of town for nearly a week, so I'm not sure how much I'll be able to blog, if at all.

Just in case I can't, have a joyous Christmas, from The Ice Palace!

In the meantime, please notice the Salvation Army Kettle on the sidebar, and drop in a buck or two if you can to help the cause!

Thursday, December 18, 2008

My First Ever Bacon Post...


(click on pic for full size)

The fix is in.

After today's recount results, Coleman's lead dropped from the initial 774 votes on election night to just five votes.

There are more to count, including the so-called "improperly rejected" ballots.

This will likely go to the Minnesota Supreme Court, where the two Supreme Court Judges that had any assemblance of sanity will need to recuse themselves, since they are participating in the current recount.

Say hello to Senator Franken.

He'll do Minnesota proud.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Wednesday Hero Blogburst, 12-17-08

This Weeks Post Was Suggested By Melinda

Chief Warrant Officer 2 Christian P. Humphreys
Chief Warrant Officer 2 Christian P. Humphreys
28 years old from Fallon, Nevada
6th Squadron, 17th Cavalry Regiment, Task Force 49
November 15, 2008
U.S. Army

A funny, nice guy who loved to fly. That's how Christian P. Humphreys is remembered by his friends. "He was a great guy, always happy and had a joke," said Sean Whitney, a flight medic. "We used to play with our paintball guns in the cornfields behind his house."

Humphreys flew with the Fallon Naval Air Station Search and Rescue Longhorns from June 6, 2004, to May 5, 2006. He left the Navy and joined the Army as part of the "Blue to Green" program to become a helicopter pilot.

Humphreys, along with Chief Warrant Officer 3 Donald V. Clark, 37 years old from Tennessee, was killed when their OH-58 Kiowa helicopter crashed while on a mission over Mosul, Iraq. As a rescue crew chief, Humphreys was in charge of the operation behind the pilots. He made the decisions when to deploy rescue crews out of the helicopter to assist injured people, and he also took care of the equipment.

"He was a funny guy, a nice guy, a lot of character," said Petty Officer 2nd Class Justin Schmidt. "The guy was always entertaining, always had something to say, but like everyone here, he displayed the professionalism in saving lives."

Chief Warrant Officer 2 Christian P. Humphreys leaves behind a wife and parents.


All Information Was Found On And Copied From MilitaryCity.com

These brave men and women sacrifice so much in their lives so that others may enjoy the freedoms we get to enjoy everyday. For that, I am proud to call them Hero.
We Should Not Only Mourn These Men And Women Who Died, We Should Also Thank God That Such People Lived

This post is part of the Wednesday Hero Blogroll. For more information about Wednesday Hero, or if you would like to post it on your site, you can go here.
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Dhimmis in the news...

And the Dhimmi of the Week Award goes to:

The Canadian "Human Rights" Commission:

The Canadian Human Rights Commission has rejected a human rights complaint filed against a radical Muslim imam who published an viciously bigoted book about gays, Jews, women, Christians, and even called for the murder of infidels.

Marc Lebuis, the publisher of the Quebec blog Point de Bascule, filed a complaint with the CHRC back in April, after reading a hateful book called "Islam or Integration?" "Islam or Fundamentalism" (thanks to reader John for the translation correction.) You can see a copy of the book in its entirety here. (It's in French.)

Of course, if it was a Christian Pastor in Canada who said a word about homosexuality being a sin, he'd be thrown in prison.

But we must, of course, strive to understand the adherents of the Islamist death cult, mustn't we? I mean, you wouldn't want to risk offending them.

(h/t Doug Bass)

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Now this oughta increase the tax base of New York State...

And maybe monkeys will fly out of David Paterson's butt, as well.

In a fit of economic suicidality, the esteemed governor of New York has decided to tax everything from I-pods to massages. In the words of Paterson,
"We're going to have to take some extreme measures," Paterson said Tuesday after unveiling the slash-and-burn budget.
And just how are you going to raise revenues after you slash and burn the economic climate of New York, Governor Paterson?

In the prescient words of Ronaldus Magnus,
"If it moves, tax it. If it keeps moving, regulate it. If it stops moving, subsidize it."

Where have we heard these before?

"I did not have sex with that woman... Ms. Lewinsky..."

"It all depends on what the meaning of "is" is...."

And, "We've...err.. I've had no contact with Governor Blagojevich."
Sneed hears rumbles President-elect Barack Obama's chief of staff, Rahm Emanuel, is reportedly on 21 different taped conversations by the feds -- dealing with his boss' vacant Senate seat!
I guess it all depends on what the meaning of "contact" is.

...And I shake my head...

Bush says he had to wreck the economy, to save the economy.



US President George W. Bush said in an interview Tuesday he was forced to sacrifice free market principles to save the economy from "collapse." "I've abandoned free-market principles to save the free-market system," Bush told CNN television, saying he had made the decision "to make sure the economy doesn't collapse." Bush's comments reflect an extraordinary departure from his longtime advocacy for an unfettered free market, as his administration has orchestrated unprecedented government intervention in the face of a dire financial crisis. "I am sorry we're having to do it," Bush said. But Bush said government action was necessary to ease the effects of the crisis, offering perhaps his most dire assessment yet of the country's economy.



Correct me if I'm wrong, King, but isn't the only way to save the free market to enact and to engage in behavior consistent with those very principles that make it viable? Can one "save" the free market by enacting policies that are antithetical to same, and which by their very nature and in every other known circumstance act to thwart the growth of a free-market economy and benefits thereof? If so, then when is the correct time to right the ship back on that course of economic freedom and the prosperity (and risk) that goes along with it? Can one merely parcel a free market and expect it to then flourish?


You know, Bush has been more than gracious toward his malevolent detractors lo' these past eight years, what with the "new tone" and all. Could it be that President Bush is leaving Obama and the democrats (and, unfortunately this nation) with a poke in the eye? Somehow, that just doesn't seem to be his style, which, to this point, has been largely to go along to get along. Or, alternatively, has what has been at best a short-term pseudo-fix (if that) been enacted merely in an effort to provide the Obama administration with a set of training wheels, and to hell with our collective futures?



"I feel a sense of obligation to my successor to make sure there is not a, you know, a huge economic crisis. Look, we're in a crisis now. I mean, this is -- we're in a huge recession, but I don't want to make it even worse."



Question Mr. President: have the bailouts really made anything better? In the short or in the foreseeable long term?


I didn't think so.

Monday, December 15, 2008

The Day the Envirowhackos Tipped Their Hand....

"There's still no intelligent life in Hollywood"

I went to see the movie "The Day the Earth Stood Still." A remake of the 1951 classic, it was okay, in its own way. Until it got really teachy-preachy... until, wittingly or unwittingly, the world ended up in an enviro-whacko socialist "utopia" that was a hell of a lot scarier than anything else Hollyweird could possibly dream up.

In the original, the aliens threatened to destroy humanity because we were killing each other.

In this, the cheesy and ever-so-politically-correct remake, the aliens were coming to destroy civilization not because we were destroying each other, but because we were destroying Mother Earth.

Ultimately, the main alien, Klaatu (I wonder if the near-rhyming of Keanu and Klaatu had anything to do with his landing the part), of course, decided not to destroy humanity, but rather destroyed all of humanity's means of producing energy, so that mankind could wreak no more destruction against mother earth and its creatures.

And, as would be the logical conclusion to an environmental-whacko socialist utopia, civilization was in ruins, automobiles, cylinder-driven means of transportation, and other modern-day evil luxuries were rendered useless, and we were back to living in the stone age.

Pretty much the enviro-whacko vision of America, don't you think?

And, no, there was no "Gort, Klaatu barada nicto."

All in all...save your money and go rent the original.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Christmas Cheer!

Courtesy of my granddaughter...

Friday, December 12, 2008

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Wednesday Hero Blogburst

Spc. Jonnie L. Stiles
Spc. Jonnie L Stiles
38 years old from Highlands Ranch, Colorado
769th Engineer Battalion, Louisiana Army National Guard
November 13, 2008
U.S. Army

Louisiana National Guard spokesman Maj. Michael Kazmierzak said Spc. Jonnie L. Stiles had been serving as a gunner on a Humvee doing route clearance when and IED detonated near his vehicle in Jalalabad, Afghanistan. He said the job typically involves checking roads for bombs and insurgents.

Stiles' wife, Launa, said that he was nearly killed last month when a suicide bomber blew up a military vehicle in front of his. She said he was still able to rescue three other soldiers and returned to duty before his 30-day recovery period was finished.

"He was strong and really cared for his men," she said.

Stiles was born in Bartlesville, Oklahoma, and graduated from Littleton High School in Colorado. He served in the military for 17 years, first joining the Marines and then switching to the Army in 1999. He served three years at Fort Carson, left the Army and then returned as a member of the Colorado Air National Guard in the Summer of 2007.


All Information Was Found On And Copied From MilitaryCity.com

These brave men and women sacrifice so much in their lives so that others may enjoy the freedoms we get to enjoy everyday. For that, I am proud to call them Hero.
We Should Not Only Mourn These Men And Women Who Died, We Should Also Thank God That Such People Lived

This post is part of the Wednesday Hero Blogroll. For more information about Wednesday Hero, or if you would like to post it on your site, you can go here.
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Jihad Jack Murtha Stands By His Lies.

(Cross-posted at Murtha Must Go!!)

If there was ever a more brazenly self-serving, arrogant man alive than John "Jihad Jack" Murtha, I've yet to find him:
CNSNews.com: “Recently, all the charges were dropped with the soldiers involved in the Haditha event. You had been on TV with CNN and different outlets and you were saying that they were, quote, the civilians were killed in cold blood, end quote. But now that the charges have been dropped, do you think that was the right thing to say?”

Rep. John Murtha: “Yes, I think it was, that’s my job. My job is due. Listen, the NCIS (National Criminal Investigation Service) came to exactly the same conclusion I did. They had a two-star general investigate it. General Hagee went over right after I spoke out and talked to all of the Marines in the field and said you got to stop this kind of killing.”
What the hell does "That's my job. My job is due" mean? Is it your job, Jihad Jack, to usurp the Constitutional protections of soldiers who lay their lives on the line to defend that very Constitution? Is it "your job" to pronounce guilt before any investigation has taken place?

You say that General Hagee went right over right after you "spoke out" [read: LIED] and talked to all of the Marines in the field, telling them "you got to stop this kind of killing." Where is your proof of that? Why should we take you at your word when you have proven time and time again that you will lie to protect your sorry-assed, corrupt, political career? Did you even bother to look at the facts, Jihad Jack? Hell--you didn't even wait for an official briefing before you opened your big fat piehole on that fateful day in May of 2006, when you couldn't wait to run in front of the nearest camera to spill your bile--all just so you could pad your resume to advance your big, fat, self-serving backside to a coveted House Majority Leader post.

Jihad Jack Murtha: We here at Murtha Must Go!! continue to stand with our demand that you apologize and forthwith resign your seat in the House of Representatives. If you can't back up your story, if you can't back up your lies with facts, then you not only need to resign your post, but you need to be tried for slander.

We here at Murtha Must Go!! know of course that you will not do the honorable thing, because YOU HAVE NO HONOR!

Nonetheless, Congressman John Murtha, we here at Murtha Must Go!! will not rest until justice has been served!

We ask all like-minded readers to fill out the "Vets For Freedom" petition on the sidebar of this blog to call on Jack Murtha to apologize for his abject slanderous remarks and his blatant disregard for the principles inherent in the United States Constitution which his oath of office demands that he uphold.

(Cross-posted at Murtha Must Go!!)

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

What did Obama know and when did he know it...

Today, President-elect Barack Hussein Obama claimed he had no contact with Illinois governor Rod Blagojevich (D--Deep Shit) regarding who should fill his now-vacant U.S. Senate seat.

ABC News' Political Punch states otherwise, but then adds this caveat:
There are no allegations that President-elect Obama or anyone close to him had anything to do with any of the crimes Gov. Blagojevich is accused of having committed.
But if you go to the original indictment, Blagojevich himself states:
ROD BLAGOJEVICH said that the consultants (Advisor B and another consultant are believed to be on call at the time) are telling him that he has to “suck it up” for two years and do nothing and give this “motherfucker” [the President-elect] his senator. Fuck him. For nothing? Fuck him.” ROD BLAGOJEVICH states that he will put “[Senate Candidate 4]” in the Senate “before I just give fucking [Senate Candidate 1] a fucking Senate seat and I don’t get anything.”
No doubt Blago's high falutent way of saying, "I'm giving away this Senate seat and all I'm getting is this lousy T-shirt?!?"

Question: If Barack Hussein Obama had no contact with Blagojevich regarding his successor, how did Blagojevich know which candidate the, (in Blago's words) "motherfucker" wanted? If Blago didn't know which candidate Obama preferred in the first place, why the ruckus when he found that he wouldn't "get anything" for picking Obama's choice? In other words, how did Blago know who his (Obama's) senator was, if there was supposedly no contact with Obama regarding the matter?

Again I ask--what did Barack Hussein Obama know, and when did he know it?

And Good Riddance...

In my opinion, one of the most visibly corrupt, self-serving governors today has been Illinois Democrat governor Rod Blagojevich.  One can't go 20 miles down an Illinois tollway without reading a monstrous sign that states something to the effect of, "Open Road Tollway (courtesy of) Governor Rod Blagojevich" (as if he himself footed the bill). 

Democrat Rod Blagojevich took the reins in 2003, vowing to run a clean show after the ethically- (and mentally) challenged Republican governor George Ryan went down in flames of corruption.  But instead of delivering a promise of ethical virtuosity, Illinois voters got more of the same... in spades, up to the point where Governor Blagojevich is awaiting indictment on selling the vacated Obama U.S. Senate seat to the highest bidder


Updated at 8:57 a.m.: On the issue of the U.S. Senate selection, federal prosecutors alleged Blagojevich sought appointment as Secretary of Health and Human Services in the new Obama administration, or a lucrative job with a union in exchange for appointing a union-preferred candidate.

Blagojevich and Harris conspired to demand the firing of Chicago Tribune editorial board members responsible for editorials critical of Blagojevich in exchange for state help with the sale of Wrigley Field, the Chicago Cubs baseball stadium owned by Tribune Co.

Blagojevich and Harris, along with others, obtained and sought to gain financial benefits for the governor, members of his family and his campaign fund in exchange for appointments to state boards and commissions, state jobs and state contracts.

"The breadth of corruption laid out in these charges is staggering," U.S. Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald said in a statement.
"They allege that Blagojevich put a 'for sale' sign on the naming of a United States senator; involved himself personally in pay-to-play schemes with the urgency of a salesman meeting his annual sales target; and corruptly used his office in an effort to trample editorial voices of criticism."

It is my hope that as Blagojevich enjoys his perp and frog march, that my former fellow Illiniosians will make a wiser choice for a replacement.  But given their penchant for electing political machine candidates, I won't hold my breath. 

Monday, December 08, 2008

And give me three hail mary's and an our father and I'll give you absolution...

Some guys will do anything for a handout. Including engaging in self-flagellation:

DETROIT (Reuters) - General Motors Corp on Monday unveiled an unusually frank advertisement acknowledging it had "disappointed" and sometimes even "betrayed" American consumers as it lobbies to clinch the federal aid it needs to stay afloat into next month.

The print advertisement marked a sharp break from GM's public stance of just several weeks ago when it sought to justify its bid for a U.S. government on the grounds that the credit crisis had undermined its business in ways executives could never have foreseen.

It also came as Chief Executive Rick Wagoner, who has led the automaker since 2000, faces new pressure to step aside as GM seeks up to $18 billion in federal funding.

"While we're still the U.S. sales leader, we acknowledge we have disappointed you," the ad said. "At times we violated your trust by letting our quality fall below industry standards and our designs became lackluster."

The unsigned open letter, entitled "GM's Commitment to the American People" ran in the trade journal Automotive News, which is widely read by industry executives, lobbyists and other insiders.

In the ad, GM admits to other strategic missteps analysts and critics have said hastened its recent decline.

"We have proliferated our brands and dealer network to the point where we lost adequate focus on the core U.S. market," the ad said. "We also biased our product mix toward pick-up trucks and SUVs."

That they have to adorn themselves with sackcloths and demean themselves and otherwise obsequiously shed every shred of dignity to get themselves on the public dole is sorry enough. But not even this smarmy exercise in self-flagellation could appease the self-righteous, pompous asses that make up Congress, who would not back down from exacting their pound of political flesh from their scapegoat du jour:
Senate Banking Committee Chairman Christopher Dodd, a Democrat from Connecticut who is central to the effort to craft an auto bailout bill, on Sunday said GM should replace Wagoner.

With the hideous regulations and union kowtowing that Dodd, Frank & Co. exacted from the U.S. auto industry, crippling their ability to be competitive (not to mention the charms they worked on the home mortgage industry); that these incompetent buffoons continue to hold themselves blameless for the mess that they themselves were complicit in creating is nothing less than laughable.

Thursday, December 04, 2008

Why the Printer Won't Work...

Wednesday, December 03, 2008

Getting in touch with my feminine side?

Lumberjack directed me to a "Gender Test" website, that hosts supposedly sophisticated software that is supposed to be able to tell whether a blog is written by a man or a woman.

Hogwash.

Now.... where did I lay that quiche recipe?

Wednesday Hero Blogburst 12-3-08

Spc. Matthew T. Morris
Spc. Matthew T. Morris
23 years old from Cedar Park, Texas
2nd Squadron, 3rd Armored Cavalry Regiment
April 06, 2008
U.S. Army

"He was a very creative kid, and when he wasn't in a challenging environment, he tried to make life interesting," Glenn Morris, father of Spc. Morris, said. "He excelled in a military school structure and in a team environment."

Before enlisting in the Army in 2005, Morris attended the Fishburne Military School in Waynesboro, Virginia where he met a history teacher who inspired him to want to become an educator. "After his service, he wanted to go back to school and get a four-year degree to become a teacher," said his mother, Lisa. "He wanted to make a difference and give back to the community."

Spc. Morris was killed when his vehicle encountered an IED in Balad, Iraq. Also killed in the attack was Cpt. Ulises Burgos-Cruz.


All Information Was Found On And Copied From MilitaryCity.com

These brave men and women sacrifice so much in their lives so that others may enjoy the freedoms we get to enjoy everyday. For that, I am proud to call them Hero.
We Should Not Only Mourn These Men And Women Who Died, We Should Also Thank God That Such People Lived

This post is part of the Wednesday Hero Blogroll. For more information about Wednesday Hero, or if you would like to post it on your site, you can go here.
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Remember that tool box...

You know, the one that Heidimarie Stephansh...whatever lost in space? (leave it to a woman to lose a guy's tools)...

Well NASA is tracking that $100,000 toolbox here, in real time.

Now if only NASA could help me keep track of my lost socks....

This Might Explain A Lot.

Separated at birth?

The alien Exeter from "This Island Earth," and Joe Biden...

Monday, December 01, 2008

Enviro-whackism Uber Alles?

It seems that they want a world court to deal with "environmental injustices."
Gordon Brown, the Prime Minister, has agreed the concept of an international court will be taken into account when considering how to make these international agreements on climate change binding. The court is also backed by a number of MPs, climate change experts and public figures including the actress Judi Dench.

[Whenever I want some hard scientific facts to back up my arguments, I naturally turn to Judi Dench--don't you?? --ed].


Mr Hockman said an international court will be needed to enforce and regulate any agreement.

"The time is now ripe to set this up and get it going," he said. "Its remit will be overall climate change and the need for better regulation of carbon emissions but at the same time the implementation and enforcement of international environmental agreements and instruments."

According to the piece, the court may very likely be staffed by the high priest of the Church of Global warming himself:
The court would be led by retired judges, climate change experts and public figures. It would include a scientific body to consider evidence and provide access to any data on the environment.
Hmmm... I wonder if their court will look something like this:

I'll tell you one thing, if these socialist pea brained whackos do hold a world court for "crimes against the environment," perhaps they should feature themselves as their first defendants:
Staging a global forum on climate change is a dilemma, as it adds to the very problem it is trying to solve.

Around 13,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide (CO2) will be added to the Earth's greenhouse effect from the December 1-12 meeting of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, the UNFCCC said.
Heh. Yet another case of "Do as I say, not as I do!"

A question.

What is the difference between this, and this?

Just wondering.

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Separated at Birth?

The Hugo Chavez Barack Obama Show?

While the Obamessiah may have been somewhat successful in selling the American electorate on the possibility of a neo-socialist government, the chances of a permanent left turn in American politics, if Chavez' Venezuela is any kind of harbinger, are slim to none.

Frontline on PBS has an interesting show online called The Hugo Chavez show, which, wittingly or unwittingly, chronicles a host of paralells with and harbingers of what may come with an Obama administration.

In The Hugo Chávez Show, FRONTLINE producer Ofra Bikel travels to Venezuela to offer an illuminating portrait of the Venezuelan president. Through interviews with former government officials, Chávez associates and ordinary Venezuelans, FRONTLINE chronicles Chávez's ascent to power and his efforts to use the powers of the presidency to stay there.

The film also reveals the key role of the media—or, rather, Chávez's savvy use of the media—in his rise to power.This report begins by introducing viewers to Aló Presidente—or "Hello, President"—a weekly televised show that often runs five to eight hours and features Chávez speaking directly to the people, explaining government policy and mixing in a smattering of songs, poetry and whatever else strikes his fancy.

"Chávez is easily caricatured because he can be funny; he can seem buffoonish on his Aló Presidente," journalist Jon Lee Anderson tells FRONTLINE. "He sings; he gets involved in wordplay. ... He's probably the world's first virtual president in the age of the communication revolution."

Given the press' coronation of "The One," allowing him to amble about the campaign trail without delivering anything more than a softball, I believe that Barack Hussein Obama may well be the world's second virtual president.

FRONTLINE investigates beyond the boundaries of the president's show, discovering grand schemes that remain unfinished and a host of public officials blamed for any dissent. FRONTLINE interviews Nelson Mora, a committed community organizer who dared to raise questions about a government relocation plan and was subsequently humiliated by the president on live television. "At that moment, I felt bad. I closed my eyes and felt tears," says Mora. "And I said, 'My God, why does the president treat me like this, the commander in chief, the leader of this process?'"
Joe the Plumber, anyone? WGN Radio, anyone?

More paralells in the piece abound:

Yet it was Chávez's keen grasp of the power of the media that propelled him to power, observers say. FRONTLINE recounts how Chávez got his first taste of the media limelight when he participated in a failed 1992 coup. Much to his military compatriots' surprise, Chávez—who was commanding the group's forces in Caracas—agreed to surrender in exchange for a chance to go on the air and address his comrades and the people. The failed coup would send Chávez to prison for two years, but the media exposure planted the seeds of a folk hero in the making.

"Chávez failed militarily, totally," says Alberto Barrera, author of the international best seller Hugo Chávez. "But he triumphed in terms of public relations. The public Chávez who was born was born not out of a military or political victory, but out of the ratings."

And the paralells get even more creepy:
Upon his release from prison in 1994, Chávez began laying the groundwork for his eventual rise to the presidency in 1998. The Hugo Chávez Show recounts the highs and lows of Chávez's 10-year tenure. His political successes included pushing through laws that sent Venezuelan society veering to the left and injecting billions of dollars in oil revenue into socialist government programs.
But here's where the rays of hope start coming in:

Cracks are also showing in Chávez's much-vaunted revolutionary programs. In The Hugo Chávez Show, FRONTLINE speaks with workers in various socialized cooperatives who say Chávez's government has failed to provide needed resources, or even to pay them for the work they have done.

"I am among the poorest people in Venezuela," says cooperative worker Maria Rengifo. "The president has to know, in order to form a cooperative, we have to have income. ... He has to know what's going on. Why aren't they functioning? Why aren't they producing? Why isn't there anything to produce?"

Welcome to Socialism/Communism 101, Maria. And welcome to Obama's vision for America, my fellow Americans (whether or not you voted for him).

With frustration building and food shortages common, Venezuela's crime rate has soared, with murders, robberies and kidnappings for ransom occurring frequently. "It's shocking to come nearly a decade on and see that most of what Hugo Chávez was railing in anger about being left with—a failed society, misery, insecurity, unequal distribution of wealth—is still here," Anderson tells FRONTLINE.
Obama voters (and unfortunately, the rest of us) are about to suffer a similarly painful lesson as Captain Candyman maneuvers the U.S.S. United States on a decidedly port-wise list.

Hopefully the American electorate's tolerance for sea-sickness will be more short-lived than a decade, and a righting of the ship will take place in four (or perhaps only two) years.

Meanwhile, sit back, and enjoy the show.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Minnesota's 'missing men'?

Speaking of Somali pirates, it seems that Somali nationals are 'disappearing' from Minnesota's streets:

Young Somali men have been mysteriously disappearing from the Minneapolis-St.Paul area – and many Minnesotans believe they are being recruited to join the holy war in Somalia.

According to KMSP-TV in Minneapolis, more than 20 men between the ages of 17 and 22 have vanished from the Twin Cities area in the last few months. Minnesota has the largest Somali community in the U.S. – nearly 60,000 – but some have left without ever informing their families.

The Somali community simply calls them "The Missing."

"It looks like people are being recruited to join the jihad in Somalia, but who's doing it?" Omar Jamal of the Somali Justice Center told the station. "We don't know."

Family members and community leaders all say they think the men have returned to fight in the country's civil war – where al-Qaida has a strong presence. The area is so violent – with road blocks and pirates – that the U.N. has refused to allow peacekeeping and humanitarian aid workers to enter. According to U.N. estimates, there are now 1 million Somali refugees. Many people are starving and living on roadsides.

Families are deeply concerned about their relatives in Somalia, and now their men are vanishing from the U.S.

"They're concerned, emotional and in shock," Jamal said. "They're completely grief stricken."

[SNIP]

According to the report, eight men departed Aug.1, and 10 more left Nov. 4. Flight itineraries indicate they flew out of Minneapolis, through Dubai

, Nairobi and Malindi, Kenya. The families believe they used boats to enter Somalia.

Five families, suspecting that their children had joined jihad fighters in Somalia, reported their suspicions to the FBI – though investigators would not provide the station with any statements of confirmation or denial.

Religious leader Shiek Imam Abdighani Ali said he thinks recruiters are arranging trips for young Somali men.

"A lot of parents are coming to us asking where their kid is going," Ali said. "We are trying to find out who financed (the trips). They are 17 years old, $1,700, and most of them don't work."

Other religious leaders and families say they have been warned not to talk about the mysterious disappearances.

Some of the men are believed to be former gang members, while others were students in college. One man called his mother and told her he was in Somalia – but he would not say why he was there, and no one is talking.

Presto Change-o?

One helluva trick. With a wave of a wand, turn 700 billion into 7 TRILLION?

The U.S. government is prepared to provide more than $7.76 trillion on behalf of American taxpayers after guaranteeing $306 billion of Citigroup Inc. debt yesterday. The pledges, amounting to half the value of everything produced in the nation last year, are intended to rescue the financial system after the credit markets seized up 15 months ago.

My. Isn't that beneficent of our government to 'provide' 7.76 TRILLION (yep--with a "T") DOLLARS of our money on our behalf. Without asking us.

Maybe I'll just go rob the bank down the street, and buy myself a plasma TV; on the depositors behalf, of course.

WTF do they think they're doing, anyway? Just whose money do they think they're manufacturing and throwing around?

This is getting out-and-out ridiculous. With all this extra money being printed, before you know it we'll be needing to cart cash around in a wheelbarrow to buy a bloody candy bar.

With bozos like these at the helm, who the hell needs Somali pirates?

Saturday, November 22, 2008

V.I.DAY!!!

Congratulations to our men and women in uniform, their commanders, and to President Bush!

My heartfelt gratitude toward those who gave all.

Thank you for establishing a stable democratic republic in what was a hotbed of terrorist oppression and expansion!

To you, our armed forces, we, the citizens of the United States, owe you our full measure of debt and gratitude!

HOOAH!!

A Petiton to Barack Obama to Apologize for Democrat Racism

From an email I received from the NBRA

Petition to Barack Hussein Obama for a Proclamation of Apology for the Democratic Party's 150-year History of Racism

We, black American citizens of the United States and the National Black Republican Association, declare and assert:

WHEREAS, the healing of wounds begins with an apology, and the Democratic Party has never apologized for their horrific atrocities and racist practices against black Americans during the past 150 years, nor held accountable for the residual impact that those atrocities and practices are having on us today,

WHEREAS, as a result of the 1898 Wilmington Race Riot Commission Report of May 31, 2006, the North Carolina Democratic Party issued a unanimous apology on January 20, 2007 for the Democratic Party's 1898 murderous rampage against blacks,

WHEREAS, inner-city minister Rev. Wayne Perryman wrote a book, "Unfounded Loyalty: An In-depth Look Into The Love Affair Between Blacks and Democrats", and filed a lawsuit against the Democratic Party on December 10, 2004, but, after admitting their history of racism under oath in court, the Democrats refused to apologize,

WHEREAS, history shows that the Democratic Party through its racist agenda and "States' Rights" claim to own slaves, sought to protect and preserve the institution of slavery from 1792 to 1865, thus enslaving millions of African Americans, while the Republican Party was started in 1854 as the anti-slavery party, fought to free blacks from slavery and championed civil rights for blacks,

WHEREAS, the Democratic Party enacted fugitive slave laws to keep blacks from escaping from plantations; instigated the 1856 Dred Scott decision which legally classified blacks as property; passed the Missouri Compromise to spread slavery into 50% of the new Northern states; and passed the Kansas-Nebraska Act designed to spread slavery into all of the new states,

WHEREAS, the Democratic Party in the South formed the Confederacy, seceded from the Union and fought a Civil War (1861 to 1865) to expand slavery where over 600,000 citizens were killed, including many thousand blacks,

WHEREAS, starting in 1861, anti-Civil War Democrats in the North were called "copperheads" like the poisonous snake because they (a) wanted to appease the South and accept a negotiated peace that would have resulted in an independent Confederacy where blacks were kept in slavery, and (b) showed their deep opposition to the Civil War draft by taking their anger out on blacks, murdering and maiming blacks in virtually every Northern state,

WHEREAS, anti-Civil War Democrats in New York engaged in "Four Days of Terror" against the city's black population from July 13-16, 1863, and the anti-Civil War chant of the Democrats, as reported by one Pennsylvania newspaper, was: "Willing to fight for Uncle Sam", but not "for Uncle Sambo,"

WHEREAS, the anti-Civil War Democrats verbally attacked Republican President Abraham Lincoln because he wanted to free the slaves through war and grant blacks civil rights, and drafted Northern men into the army to fight and die to make his Emancipation Proclamation a reality – a Proclamation that became the source of the Juneteenth celebrations that occur in black communities today,

WHEREAS, after the Civil War, the Republican Party (a) pushed to amend the Constitution to grant blacks freedom (13th Amendment), citizenship (14th Amendment) and the right to vote (15th Amendment); (b) passed the Civil Rights Acts of 1866 and 1875; and (c) designed Reconstruction, a ten-year period of unprecedented political power for African Americans,

WHEREAS, anti-civil rights Democrat Andrew Johnson became president when Republican President Abraham Lincoln was assassinated, and after the Civil War, the Democratic Party fought to end Reconstruction and deny blacks the promised "40 acres and a mule;" fought to overturn all civil rights legislation from the 1860's to the 1960's; and passed repressive legislation including the Black Codes and Jim Crow laws,

WHEREAS, the book "A Short History of Reconstruction" by the renowned historian, Dr. Eric Foner, revealed that: (a) the Ku Klux Klan was founded in 1866 by Democrats as a Tennessee social club; (b) the Ku Klux Klan became a military force serving the interests of the Democratic Party, the planter class, and all those who desired the restoration of white supremacy; and (c) the Ku Klux Klan spread into other Southern states, launching a ‘reign of terror‘ against Republican leaders, black and white,

WHEREAS, the book "A Short History of Reconstruction" by Dr. Eric Foner exposed the facts that: (a) the Hayes-Tilden Compromise of 1877 was an attempt by Republicans to get the Democrats to stop lynching Republicans, black and white, and respect the rights of blacks; and (b) contrary to legend, President Rutherford Hayes did not remove the last federal troops from the South, but merely ordered federal troops surrounding the South Carolina and Louisiana statehouses to return to their barracks,

WHEREAS, after taking control of Congress in the late 1800's, the Democratic Party passed the Repeal Act of 1894 that overturned civil rights legislation passed by the Republicans, including the Civil Rights Acts of 1866 and 1875,

WHEREAS, the Democratic Party supported the "Plessy v. Ferguson" decision in 1896 that established the "separate but equal" segregation doctrine,

WHEREAS, historical documents show that: (a) in an effort to stop the Democrats from lynching and denying civil rights to blacks, the NAACP was founded on Republican President Abraham Lincoln's 100th birthday, February 12, 1909, by white Republicans Oswald Garrison Villard, Mary White Ovington and William English Walling; and (b) the first black general secretary of the NAACP was black Republican James Weldon Johnson who became the general secretary of the NAACP in 1920 and, in 1900, wrote the song, "Lift Every Voice," known as the "Black National Anthem" in collaboration with his brother, John Rosamond Johnson,

WHEREAS, after Democrat President Woodrow was elected in 1912 and while Congress was controlled by the Democrats, black American civil employees where pushed out of federal government jobs, and the greatest number of bills proposing racial segregation and discrimination were introduced than had ever been proposed in our nation's history,

WHEREAS, even though Democrat President Franklin D. Roosevelt received the vote of many black Americans due to his "New Deal," he banned black American newspapers from the military because he was convinced the newspapers were communists and rejected anti-lynching laws pushed by Republicans, as well as efforts by Republicans to establish a permanent Civil Rights Commission that did not get established until 1958 under Republican President Dwight Eisenhower,

WHEREAS, Democrat President Harry Truman not only rejected Republican efforts to enact anti-lynching laws and establish a permanent Civil Rights Commission, but also failed to enforce his 1948 Executive Order designed to desegregate the military, an order that was not effectively enforced until Republican President Dwight Eisenhower was elected,

WHEREAS, with the party slogan: "Segregation Forever!," the Dixiecrats, who were Democrats, (a) formed the States' Rights Democratic Party for the presidential election of 1948; (b) remained Democrats for all local elections and all subsequent national elections; and (c) did not all migrate to the Republican Party as Democrats today falsely claim, but instead those racist Democrats died Democrats and had declared that they would rather vote for a "yellow dog" than a Republican because the Republican Party was known as the party for blacks,

WHEREAS, during the civil rights era of the 1960's, the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., who was a Republican, was fighting the Democrats including: (a) Democrat Georgia Governor Lester Maddox who famously brandished ax handles to prevent blacks from patronizing his restaurant; (b) Democrat Public Safety Commissioner Eugene "Bull" Connor in Birmingham who let loose vicious dogs and turned fire hoses on black civil rights demonstrators; and (c) Democrat Alabama Governor George Wallace who stood in front of the Alabama schoolhouse in 1963 and thundered: "Segregation now, segregation tomorrow, segregation forever,"

WHEREAS, the Democratic Party supported the Topeka, Kansas school board in the "Brown v. the Board of Education of Topeka", Kansas (a 1954 Supreme Court decision by Chief Justice Earl Warren who was appointed by Republican President Dwight Eisenhower) which declared that the "separate but equal" doctrine violated the 14th Amendment and ended school segregation,

WHEREAS, in 1954, Democrat Arkansas Governor Orville Faubus tried to prevent the desegregation of a Little Rock public school, resulting in Republican President Dwight Eisenhower sending federal troops to prevent violence and enforce a court order desegregating the Little Rock school,

WHEREAS, Democratic President John F. Kennedy was not a civil rights advocate because he: (a) voted against the 1957 Civil Rights Law (that was pushed by Republican President Dwight Eisenhower); (b) opposed the 1963 March on Washington by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. (that was organized by black Republican A. Phillip Randolph); (c) authorized the FBI (supervised by his brother, Attorney General Robert Kennedy) to wiretap and investigate Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. on suspicion of being a communist in order to undermine that Civil Rights leader; (d) was later criticized by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. for ignoring civil rights issues; and (e) only grudgingly agreed to make a telephone call to get Dr. King, Jr. out of the Birmingham jail after members of the King family requested Kennedy's help,

WHEREAS, after the nearly 100 years of opposition to civil rights laws by Democrats, Republican Senator Barry Goldwater, who voted for the 1957 Civil Rights Act and ran for president against Lyndon Johnson in 1964, was unfairly criticized by hypocritical Democrats because Goldwater was opposed to only portions of the 1964 Civil Rights Act that he believed was an unconstitutional expansion of federal powers,

WHEREAS, Democrat President Lyndon Johnson could not have achieved passage of civil rights legislation without the support of Republicans due to the strong opposition of Democrats, and in his 4,500-word State of the Union Address delivered on January 4, 1965, Johnson mentioned scores of topics for federal action, but only thirty five words were devoted to civil rights and not one word about voting rights,

WHEREAS, it was Republican Senator Everett Dirksen from Illinois, not Democrat President Lyndon Johnson, who was key to the passage of the 1964 Civil Rights Act, and Dirksen was also instrumental to the enactment of civil rights legislation in 1957 and 1960, as well as the Voting Rights Act of 1965 and the Civil Rights Act of 1968 which prohibited discrimination in housing,

WHEREAS, the chief opponents of the 1964 Civil Rights Act were Democrat Senators Sam Ervin, Albert Gore, Sr. and Robert Byrd of West Virginia, a former "Keagle" in the Ku Klux Klan, who made a 14-hour filibuster speech in the Senate in June 1964 in an unsuccessful effort to block passage of the 1964 Civil Rights Act,

WHEREAS, because Republican Senator Everett successfully fought to pass civil rights laws in the face of strong opposition to civil rights laws by the Democrats, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. hailed Senator Dirksen's "able and courageous leadership;" and "The Chicago Defender," the largest black-owned daily at that time, praised Senator Dirksen "for the grand manner of his generalship behind the passage of the best civil rights measures that have ever been enacted into law since Reconstruction,"

WHEREAS, the statement by Democrat President Lyndon Johnson about losing the South after passage of the 1964 civil rights law was not made out of a concern that racist Democrats would suddenly join the Republican Party that was fighting for the civil rights of blacks, but instead, was an expression of fear that the racist Democrats would again form a third party, such as the short-lived States' Rights Democratic Party,

WHEREAS, after Democrat President Lyndon Johnson expressed his concern that the racist Democrats in the South would be lost after the passage of the 1964 civil rights laws, Johnson's concern came true when Alabama's Democrat Governor George C. Wallace in 1968 started the American Independent Party that attracted other racist candidates, including Democrat Atlanta Mayor Lester Maddox,

WHEREAS, in March of 1968, while referring to the fact that Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. left Memphis, Tennessee after riots broke out where a teenager was killed, Democrat Senator Robert Byrd called Dr. King a "trouble-maker" who starts trouble, but runs like a coward after trouble is ignited, which motivated Dr. King to return to Memphis a few weeks later where he was assassinated on April 4, 1968,

WHEREAS, Democrats expressed little, if any, concern when the racially segregated South voted solidly for Democrats; yet unfairly deride Republicans because of the thirty-year odyssey of the South switching to the Republican Party that began in the 1970's with President Richard Nixon's "Southern Strategy," which was an effort on the part of Nixon to get fair-minded people in the South to stop voting for Democrats who did not share their values, and who were discriminating against blacks,

WHEREAS, Republican President Richard Nixon began enforcement of Affirmative Action as a merit-based system to help African Americans prosper with his 1969 Philadelphia Plan (crafted by black Republican Art Fletcher) that set the nation's first goals and timetables, as well as his 1972 Equal Employment Opportunity Act that made merit-based Affirmative Action programs the law of our nation, but Democrats turned Affirmative Action into an unfair quota system;

WHEREAS, Democrat Senator Robert Byrd who was a fierce opponent of desegregating the military complained in one letter: "I would rather die a thousand times and see old glory trampled in the dirt never to rise again than see this beloved land of ours become degraded by race mongrels, a throwback to the blackest specimen of the wilds,"

WHEREAS, in the early 1970's, Democrat Senator Robert Byrd pushed to have the Senate's main office building named after a former "Dixiecrat," Democrat Senator Richard Russell who was Senator Byrd's mentor and leading opponent of ant-lynching legislation, and in 2001 Senator Byrd was forced to apologize for using the "N-word" on television,

WHEREAS, Democrats did not denounce Democrat Senator Christopher Dodd who praised Senator Robert Byrd as someone who would have been "a great senator for any moment," including the Civil War; yet Democrats denounced Senator Trent Lott for his remarks about Senator Strom Thurmond who was never in the Ku Klux Klan and, after he became a Republican, defended blacks against lynching and the discriminatory poll taxes imposed on blacks by Democrats,

WHEREAS, Democrats today demean and discriminate against blacks including (a) Democrat Senator Ted Kennedy who called black judicial nominees "Neanderthals;" (b) Democrat Senator Harry Reid who slurred Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas as someone who could not write good English; (c) Joe Biden while he was a Senator who boasted that his home state of Delaware was a slave state; (d) Democratic Party operatives who depicted Maryland Lieutenant Governor Michael Steele on the Internet as a "Simple Sambo;" (e) cartoonist Jeff Danziger and Pat Oliphant who portrayed Secretary of State Dr. Condoleezza Rice as a "stooge" and a bare foot, "Ignorant Mammy;" (f) Democratic Senator John F. Kerry who denounced affirmative action on the floor of the Senate in the 1990's; (g) President Bill Clinton who – following in the footsteps of his mentor J. William Fulbright, a staunch segregationist – refused to enforce a court-ordered affirmative action plan while president and was himself sued for discriminating against his black employees while he was the Governor of Arkansas; and (h) Barack Hussein Obama while he was an Illinois State senator who provided funding for slum projects in Chicago that kept blacks trapped in rat and roach infested housing, as well as while he was a US senator voted against the minimum wage bill and wrote a letter of support for former Klansman Robert Byrd that helped that racist win re-election,

WHEREAS, the Democratic Party's use of deception and fear to intimidate black Americans into voting for Democrats is consistent with the Democratic Party's heritage of racism that included sanctioning of slavery and kukluxery – a perversion of moral sentiment among leaders of the Democratic Party; and the Democratic Party's racist legacy bode ill until this generation of black Americans,

NOW, THEREFORE, for the documented atrocities and accumulated wrongs inflicted upon black Americans, we submit this petition to the head of the Democratic Party, Barack Hussein Obama, for a formal proclamation of apology for the Democratic Party's 150-year history of racism.

Click here for more information about the National Black Republican Association

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Wednesday Hero Blogburst 11-19-08

Gen. Ann E. Dunwoody
Gen. Ann E. Dunwoody
55 years old from Fort Belvoir, Virginia
U.S. Army

Call it breaking the brass ceiling. Ann E. Dunwoody, after 33 years in the Army, ascended Friday to a peak never before reached by a woman in the U.S. military: four-star general.

At an emotional promotion ceremony, Dunwoody looked back on her years in uniform, said it was a credit to the Army—and a great surprise to her—that she would make history in a male-dominated military.

"Thirty-three years after I took the oath as a second lieutenant, I have to tell you this is not exactly how I envisioned my life unfolding," she told a standing-room-only auditorium. "Even as a young kid, all I ever wanted to do was teach physical education and raise a family.

"It was clear to me that my Army experience was just going to be a two-year detour en route to my fitness profession," she added. "So when asked, `Ann, did you ever think you were going to be a general officer, to say nothing about a four-star?' I say, `Not in my wildest dreams.'

"There is no one more surprised than I—except, of course, my husband. You know what they say, `Behind every successful woman there is an astonished man.'"

You can read the rest of Gen. Dunwoody's story here.



These brave men and women sacrifice so much in their lives so that others may enjoy the freedoms we get to enjoy everyday. For that, I am proud to call them Hero.
We Should Not Only Mourn These Men And Women Who Died, We Should Also Thank God That Such People Lived

This post is part of the Wednesday Hero Blogroll. For more information about Wednesday Hero, or if you would like to post it on your site, you can go here.
Wednesday Hero Logo

Bad News for the Pro-Death Crowd...

From here:
LONDON (AP) — Doctors have given a woman a new windpipe with tissue grown from her own stem cells, eliminating the need for anti-rejection drugs.
And eliminating the need to kill embryos, as well.
For years now, the pro-death crowd's mantra is that we need embryonic stem cell research to cure diseases. The Democratic Party Platform, to this day, reads:

Pursue embryonic stem cell research

Pres. Bush has rejected the calls from Nancy Reagan, Christopher Reeve & Americans across the land for assistance with embryonic stem cell research. We will reverse his wrongheaded policy. Stem cell therapy offers hope to more than 100 million Americans who have serious illnesses-from Alzheimer's to heart disease to juvenile diabetes to Parkinson's. We will pursue this research under the strictest ethical guidelines, but we will not walk away from the chance to save lives and reduce human suffering.
Interestingly, that little tidbit is located the part of the DNC platform that deals with abortion.

In other words, the whole embryonic stem cell debate is a move by the pro-infanticide faction of the democrat party to keep the abortionist's foot in society's door.

The dirty little secret, the gorilla on the dining room table of which no one dares speak, is that embryonic stem cell research has shown absolutely no promise toward curing disease, as embryonic stem cells have been proven time and time again to be unstable in nature, at times even causing cancer-like symptoms in subjects.

If the pro-baby killing crowd is to find justification for their ghoulish predelictions, they'll have to look elsewhere. Embryonic stem cell research ain't gonna cut it.

The road to hell...

...Is apparently not only paved with 'good intentions' but with gold, as well...
Students in the $6 billion Reading First program have not made greater progress in understanding what they read than have peers outside the program, according to a congressionally mandated study.

The final version of the study, released yesterday by the U.S. Department of Education, found that students in schools that use Reading First, a program at the core of the No Child Left Behind law, scored no better on comprehension tests than students in similar schools that do not get the funding.

"It is a program that needs to be improved," said Grover J. "Russ" Whitehurst, director of the Institute of Education Sciences, the department's research arm. "I don't think anyone should be celebrating that the federal government has spent $6 billion on a reading program that has had no impact on reading comprehension."

In all fairness, the program was not found to be totally without merit

Whitehurst said the study showed some benefits. First-graders in Reading First classrooms were better able to decode, or recognize, printed words than students in schools without the program. Decoding is a key step in learning to read.
But simply teaching decoding skills in and of itself doesn't lead children to approach reading critically, nor to read for meaning (a skill sadly absent given today's schools' propensity toward indoctrination vs. education). But the money quote here is the long-honored government approach of putting good money after bad, in spades (emphases mine):
Reading First, though popular with educators, has been tarnished by allegations of conflicts of interest and mismanagement in recent years. Federal investigators have found that some people who helped oversee the program had financial ties to the publishers of Reading First materials.

Education Secretary Margaret Spellings has assured lawmakers that measures were taken to prevent future management troubles.

"Reading First helps our most vulnerable students learn the fundamental elements of reading while helping teachers improve instruction," Spellings said. "Instead of reversing the progress we have made by cutting funding, we must enhance Reading First and help more students benefit from research-based instruction."

Apparently, Margaret Spellings never got the memo that the program isn't working in the first place!! Given the now apparently dismal results of Reading First, perhaps reversing that so-called 'progress' would be a good thing. Despite its success in teaching early decoding skills, putting additional funding into Reading First in its present form is much akin to paying full price for a Rolls Royce with one axle, putting caviar in the gas tank, and expecting it to take you to work.

Why would a United States Department of Education Secretary not only extoll and defend the virtues of a $6 billion failed program as beneficial in terms of research-based instruction, but actually call for its expansion, when the research itself indicates that the program doesn't work??

Somehow, either the time-honored definition of insanity or abject waste of taxpayer monies borne of greed (or both) are at work here.

At any rate, this program is proof positive, IMO, that allowing a federal bureaucracy to run our educational system is about as effective as having Stevie Wonder run an air traffic control center.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Coming November 22nd... V.I. Day!

Zombietime makes the case for why it is so.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

The End of White Guilt

From a press release by the National Black Republican Association:


White Guilt Emancipation Declaration


We, black American citizens of the United States of America and of the National Black Republican Association, do hereby declare that our fellow white American citizens are now, henceforth and forever more free of White Guilt.

This freedom from White Guilt was duly earned by the election of Barack Hussein Obama, a black man, to be our president by a majority of white Americans based solely on the color of his skin.

Freedom is not free, and we trust that the price paid for this freedom from White Guilt is worth the sacrifice, since Obama is a socialist who does not share the values of average Americans and will use the office of the presidency to turn America into a failed socialist nation.

Granted this November 4, 2008 - the day Barack Hussein Obama was elected as the first black president and the first socialist president of the United States of America.

That should hopefully cut down on the chances next time of electing an incompetent socialist as president.

Clowns open up Wall Street...

Story here.

I wonder if they'll be available for hire when Congress opens in January.

Couldn't be any worse than the collection of clowns we already have.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

In an ultimate show of "unity"

The democrats, in an ultimate show of peace and unity during an upcoming Obammessiah administration, wish to show their absence of malice with a four-year long witch trial of President Bush:
And Congressional Democrats say that they are determined to pursue their investigations — and that they expect career officials to disclose other issues after the Bush administration leaves. “We could spend the entire next four years investigating the Bush years,” Mr. Whitehouse said.
The Oh, so tolerant, warm and fuzzy left! So concerned about the feelings of the poor widdle Gitmo terrorists...

Well... since the Prez-to-be's BFF is a terrorist, I guess birds of a feather need to stick together.

Thank God for small favors...

Algore rejects "climate czar" job...

Geeze... everybody's got their hand out...

...though these characters may want to wash theirs first...

Sperm Donor Clinics in UK ask for bailout.

Double, Perhaps Triple Entendres?


From here:
Go outside and see the Full Beaver Moon tonight! This full Moon is a sign of freezing weather to come. For Algonquin tribes, it was a time to set beaver traps before the swamps froze to ensure a supply of warm winter furs.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

And now the government gets into the auto business...

What is it about getting elected to office that makes a schmuck think he or she is an expert on things in which he or she has absolutely no experience?

Democrats urge federal stake in big auto companies

WASHINGTON – Congressional Democrats are pushing legislation to send $25 billion in emergency loans to the beleaguered auto industry in exchange for a government ownership stake in the Big Three car companies.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., hope for quick passage of the auto bailout during a postelection session that begins Monday.

"So what's the big deal, Leo?" you may ask. "After all, they're only trying to save jobs!"

Aha, but you must understand, the government, especially government run by libs, never gets involved in anything without there being a promise of feeding their megalomaniacal lust for power and/or money.

This ain't "free money," folks. First of all, it's ours, the taxpayers' money. Second of all, the money, of course, will come with strings.

Legislation being drafted by Rep. Barney Frank, chairman of the House Financial Services Committee, and Sen. Carl M. Levin, D-Mich., would dip into the $700 billion Wall Street rescue money, approved by Congress last month, for the auto aid.
Yep. And we all know how well Barney Frank and Co. did with Fannie and Freddie, don't we? And that bailout they engineered is working so well for our 401k's.

This would be a laugh-a-minute if it wasn't so sad.

Barney Frank and Co., the same idiots who couldn't even run a cafeteria on the Capitol grounds, want to run the auto industry...

No doubt, we will see a host of vehicles in the grand traditions of state-run auto companies...

Like the perennial favorite, the Yugo
Or, how about this sporty Soviet-built Moskvitch!

I hear it comes with a do-it-yourself sunroof kit, as well, consisting of a pair of tin-snips.

Alternately, you'd score big with your date if you picked her up in this classy East German Wartburg!Oh, the marvels the omniscients in the democrat party have in store for us, the consumer!

I can hardly wait.

That's it... I'm takin' her out of mothballs...

The election is over, my candidate won, and I'm ready to open up the windows and air this place out.

The Ice Palace is now re-opened for business!

My thanks to the folks at Freedom Dogs for taking me in. If the kennel remains open I'd still like to put up a guest post every once in awhile.

While I fully appreciate the opportunity to post at Freedom Dogs, True North, and Blogs for Victory (and hope to keep doing so), they are, in the end, someone else's blogs. Here at the Ice Palace, I can post anything I want; and that freedom to get down, dirty and personal is what I missed the most. While I'm continuing the good fight to put Jihad Jack into a permanent state of retirement, that blog is too narrowly focused.

For instance, where could have I posted weird oddities like this?


(not only did she lose her flab, she also lost her tan in the process)

Yep, I'll post some fun stuff once in a while, but I'll also continue to call out corruption and democrat (and RINO) related malfeasance, with a special emphasis on politics here in central Minnesota.

Ahhh...it's good to let the hair down!

Once again, my friends... Let the games begin!

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Check, Please.


Hi folks... I thought I'd follow such luminaries as J.Roosh and Uncle Ben out the door, and put the Palace on Ice for at least awhile, if not altogether.

Ever since starting this blog in a Minneapolis hotel room on a sub-zero February night in 2005 (hence the name), being inspired by the likes of Captain Ed and the Fraters guys, I've had grandiose visions of hitting the big time.

Well, that ship never docked at my pier, so it never really even got a chance to sail away. But that's neither here nor there. I've met some unbelievably great friends in the MOB and elsewhere (too many to mention) and had some great experiences along the way. Maintaining a blog has kept my finger on the pulse of what is happening in the world to a much greater degree than was ever the case heretofore in my lifetime; and although my traffic for a week was what Captain Ed would get in less than half a minute, I was nonetheless humbled by those who did take time out of their busy day, including regular readers, Sara from California, Sid, and others, whose readership made the task of updating the blog a lot lighter.

However, lately, I've had a pretty full plate with my day job, as well as helping out with the worthy cause of helping Steve Gottwalt to get elected, not to mention family responsibilities.

As I've often said, a job worth doing, is worth doing right. Although I've enjoyed blogging, the time required to not only update a blog daily, but to really put thought into each post, was time that I was lacking. I was paying a little attention to each facet of my life, but nowhere near the attention each facet deserved; that included blogging.

While I'm shutting down The Palace for the foreseeable future, I've decided to devote some more time this season to getting the blowhard from PA-12 de-throned; along with more time on Steve Gottwalt's campaign, and hopefully, more family time.

And if I do find something worthwhile to share with the world, Derek Brigham has agreed to open up another stall for me at the Kennel, so I'll be contributing there once in a while. Additionally, I'll continue offering sporadic contributions to True North, Blogs for Victory and Grizzly Groundswell.

A deep and heartfelt thanks to all who have spent some time out of their day to read my screeds.

It has meant more to me than you'll ever know.

With that, I bid you, and The Ice Palace, adieu.

Sincerely,

Leo John Pusateri, Jr.