Sunday, November 30, 2008

School Daze

“OK, before we kick things off and get into our array of extremely awkward “team-building exercises” how about we take a spin around the room and give people a chance to introduce themselves and tell the group a little bit about themselves including any mommy or daddy hang-ups, sexual orientation and of course, political party affiliation so that we can better identify those upon which we will heap scorn and ridicule. Let’s just start on my right, then…”

Now things may have occurred differently for Augsburg college freshman, Annie Grossman, but you decide how it is that she tragically outed herself as a Republican in article here.

Quote of the Day

"If you are using the word ‘knucklehead’, DeAngelo Hall is probably involved."

- Charles Arbuckle doing the Giants-‘Skins game on the radio this morning and commenting on former Falcon, former Raider and current Redskin/knucklehead defensive back, Hall, after Hall picked up a personal foul on a knuckleheaded late hit in the first quarter

Why, perhaps, that trip to the dentist still feels like a trip to the dentist

Here’s the money paragraph from an article in today’s U-T claiming vast wastefulness in today’s health care system and what the experts say must be done to improve it:

A high-performance 21st-century health system, they say, must revolve around the central goal of paying for results. That will entail managing chronic illnesses better, adopting electronic medical records, coordinating care, researching what treatments work best, realigning financial incentives to reward success, encouraging prevention strategies and, most daunting but perhaps most important, saying no to expensive, unproven therapies.

Exit question: Does the above sound more like a fully-privatized profit-making venture via quantifiable results and customer satisfaction or a trip to the DMV?

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Some random thoughts on a college football Saturday afternoon

Lane Kiffin, former USC Offensive coordinator and ex-Raider head coach is reportedly headed to Tennessee after Phil Fulmer steps down at the end of the season. He was the hot candidate for the job and while the conventional wisdom is that he will have to immediately get up to speed on recruiting in the hyper-competitive SEC, we see things a little differently. Yes, he will need some immediate assistance in recruiting in the Southeast but as we noted previously, Tennessee is unique in that they are a football crazy school in a state that is not necessarily football crazy as opposed to the other traditional powers in that conference: Alabama, Georgia and Florida. As such, a national recruiting stategy has always been imperative and Kiffin’s west coast ties allows for the continuation of this strategy once he takes over there at Rocky Top.

We wish to thank the football television scheduling powers-that-be for putting the Civil War (Oregon/Oregon St.), USC/Notre Dame and Oklahoma/Oklahoma St., games all with huge BCS ramifications, on at essentially the same time today in the late afternoon/early evening time slot. The remote will be getting a workout.

Kirk Herbstreit, on College Game Day this morning, said that any upset loss involving the teams above USC (‘Bama, Florida, Oklahoma) today will result in USC getting to the BCS championship game. That’s an awful lot of leap-frogging for 5th-ranked SC but we have seen stranger things happen… like a 2-loss team appearing and winning last year against a team that played its last regular season game before Thanksgiving and which was ranked #5 in the BCS, slipping into a turkey coma and then finding themselves with a shot at the title upon awakening again in December.

Take a look at the top of current BCS standings, here… and get used to it. Oklahoma, Alabama, Florida, USC, Texas, Georgia and possibly Ohio State: traditional football powers that have the full backing of their respective universities and which are led by relatively young, ambitious and excellent head coaches that know how to recruit. Of course, all bets are off if the NFL comes calling (yes, we’re looking at you, Nick Saban) but by and large, all these head coaching jobs are “destination” jobs and are considered “great jobs” within the collegiate ranks. So expect musical chairs at the top of the rankings for next 5 – 7 years between these mega-programs.

Smog, Traffic, Gang violence, Mayor Villaraigosa... and all they've got to show for it is this lousy newspaper. Pt. III

The Pulitzer Prize winning paper north of here, would appear to have some difficulties with the “T”-word in describing a botched arson attack by animal rights “extremists” intended for Goran Lacan, a UCLA “vivisector”.

Good news for Lacan is bad news for the rest of us: In demonstrating an uncanny similarity to many of their Al Queda cousins, these people, in addition to being homicidal are not very bright either as they targeted the wrong home and cars.

But on Friday, Los Angeles Police Department investigators said none of the cars belonged to Lacan. The attackers, they said, targeted the wrong home and doused the wrong car with fuel before setting it on fire.

Anti-animal research extremists have increasingly targeted UCLA faculty and researchers with harassment. Past actions include firebombing a UCLA commuter van, flooding a UCLA scientist's home and placing a firebomb in the home of a UCLA researcher's neighbor.

By the logic exhibited above, we demand awkward come-ons to female co-workers be downgraded to “complimentary inquiries.”

Friday, November 28, 2008

Thanksgiving weekend rolls on to B-Daddy's this afternoon for more bird and fixins. Yum.

Quote of the day from Instaglen:

I like Thanksgiving; when I was a kid it seemed like a pale imitation of Christmas, without all the presents. Now it seems like a purer version of Christmas, where the focus is on family instead of . . . all the presents.

We're glad Glen thinks this way. It's quaint, cute even but we are of the mind that Thanksgiving is becoming the forgotten holiday. With Christmas decorations going up days after Halloween why not just go with an 11-month calendar where November and December are eliminated and and we rename the last 60 or so days of the year, "Holiday"? Charmed, we're sure.

Our creeping cynicism is deepened after learning of a horribly needless trampling death upon the opening of Black Friday doors at a Wal-Mart on Long Island (jeez, did it have to be a Wal-Mart?). Hate to say it but that's Third World stuff and we all could use a "re-boot" when it comes to the practice of our better nature during the frantic Holiday Season.

Tryptophan-ing our way through this college football weekend

(Full disclosure: we started this post yesterday but are finishing it today after Texas beat Texas A&M 49-9 and which does not fundamentally alter the landscape of the the polls and the BCS rankings)

OK. Let’s get down to business. Here are this week’s BCS rankings:

1. Alabama .9872
2. Texas .9209
3. Oklahoma .9125
4. Florida .8755
5. USC .7974
6. Utah .7974
7. Texas Tech .7789
8. Penn St. .7520
9. Boise St. .6581
10. Ohio State .6210

One of the things to be thankful for this weekend is the Big 12 and specifically the Big 12 South because, frankly, the rest of the nation and conferences have been pretty pedestrian this year. The Big 10 is down, the Pac-10 has been horrible… and you know it’s been a relatively week year for everyone else in the nation (apologies to the Mtn. West) when the pundits are talking up the ACC where no one seems capable of either leading, following or getting out of the way.

And once again the college football world will be descending upon tornado alley as the 12th-ranked Oklahoma St. Cowboys host No. 3 Oklahoma Sooners in Stillwater on Saturday night. A win by Oklahoma puts them in the Big 12 championship game against Missouri but a loss throws Texas Tech, whom Oklahoma thumped last Saturday back into the Big 12 championship game. Should the latter scenario play out, you would have Texas sitting there at No. 2 in the nation lined-up to play in the BCS title game and which did not even appear in their own conference championship game.

A closer look at the polls: The humans were obviously more impressed with Oklahoma’s beat down of Texas Tech than were the computers who may or may not take margin of victory into account as the Harris poll has Oklahoma and Texas 3 and 4, respectively and the USA Today poll has the same two teams at 2 and 4 (the two aforementioned polls are the two human polls cranked into the BCS quantum physics formula). This would indicate that the computers weigh the head-to-head matchup (Texas beat Oklahoma earlier this year) more favorably than the “who’s hot right now?” that the humans do.

And look who’s sneakin’ around the ol’ chicken coop at #5? USC has two more non strength of schedule enhancing games against Notre Dame on Saturday and then against UCLA on Dec. 6. A lot has to happen but USC getting into the national championship game through the back door is not out of the realm of possibility.

Just two weeks ago we were saying that the 6 yrs. remaining on Charlie Weis’ 10 year contract may be too fat a pill to swallow in terms of buying it out if the Tying Irish wished to go in a different direction. Well, guess what fat pill instantly slimmed-down after the Irish choked away their game at home on Senior Day, no less, against a 2-win Syracuse team, 24-23, who had lost to UConn by 25 the previous week? The grumblings are getting louder as bowl-eligible 6-5 Notre Dame travels to the coast to take on USC after which they will most certainly be 6-6 and on their way to…. Shreveport? No one is exactly sure how much Weis’ buyout is but if the worst football program in America can raise $1 million from boosters in just 2 weeks as San Diego St. did to buy out Chuck Long’s contract then we're certain that Irish nation and all the subway alums therein can raise the jack necessary if that’s what they want to do. For the record, we still don’t think he’s going anywhere after this season.

And finally, here’s our annual bitch about ESPN’s Ron Franklin being buried on ESPN 2 calling some Big 12 North game seemingly every Saturday afternoon. Despite our devotion to the Figurehead, Franklin remains the best play-by-play announcer in college football and it rankles us to see the terrible Mike Patrick assigned to ESPN’s primetime slot on Saturday evenings. Well, at least Franklin gets some network love this week as he will call the Nebraska-Colorado game today on ABC. You deserve better, Ron!

Enjoy the Games.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

A warm wish for a pleasant end to the calendar year

We went shopping a couple of days ago and before we saw it, we heard the familiar ringing of the bell at the entrance to Von’s. They’re back. The Salvation Army ringer was back at our local Von’s and boy, was that ever a great sight. We didn’t see any last year and we know that the Salvation Army and their loose change-seeking ringers had been the subject of a few snopes searches as to why they weren’t out in front of dept. store ‘X’ or grocery store ‘Y’ over the past few years (we recall some sleuthing we did at our local Target a couple of years ago where the Salvation Army ringers were allegedly banned which seemed to suggest Target corporate was just tired of the controversy surrounding this faith-based outfit and if everybody just couldn’t get along then a pox on all your houses and no one gets to stand outside our store.... And we couldn’t really blame them).

All that aside, it was good to see the ringer from a charitable organization that has always had a sterling reputation in the business for efficiency, transparency and ethics as well as being an outfit that has resisted the urges and admonitions for a more toned-down and “correct” approach to their ministry – and we wanted them to know it.

So after dropping some spare change and pocket lint into the red kettle, we smiled at the lady and said, “Its great to see you guys back”. She smiled in return, “Its great to be back….. Happy Holidays.”

Thanksgiving 2008

NOW THEREFORE, I do recommend and assign THURSDAY, the TWENTY-SIXTH DAY of NOVEMBER next, to be devoted by the people of these States to the service of that great and glorious Being who is the beneficent author of all the good that was, that is, or that will be; that we may then all unite in rendering unto Him our sincere and humble thanks for His kind care and protection of the people of this country previous to their becoming a nation; for the signal and manifold mercies and the favorable interpositions of His providence in the course and conclusion of the late war; for the great degree of tranquility, union, and plenty which we have since enjoyed;-- for the peaceable and rational manner in which we have been enable to establish Constitutions of government for our sasety and happiness, and particularly the national one now lately instituted;-- for the civil and religious liberty with which we are blessed, and the means we have of acquiring and diffusing useful knowledge;-- and, in general, for all the great and various favours which He has been pleased to confer upon us.

Read in full, here, George Washington’s Thanksgiving Day Proclamation given at the birth of a nation’s existence and the dawn of an exceptional experiment in democracy.

We’ve got a scheduled post for later on today so unless irresistible inspiration hits us, we’ll be shutting it down for a roadie up to Orange County. If you are out on the road today, please be safe and everyone have a happy Thanksgiving.

P.S. Almost forgot…take the Indians and the 3-1/2 pts. in the Pilgrims' backyard this afternoon.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

And yet, still, another way to look at this whole thing

We’ve come to the realization that politicians govern and legislate in the same manner that the CEOs of large publicly-traded corporations do: one quarterly earnings report at a time.

It should be no surprise then that their respective fates are joined at the hip.

A perfect storm considering our current econo-political structure, wouldn’t you say?

Hey, don’t blame us, it was KT who breaks down why it is that whatever Washington will try to do is doomed to failure in about as concise a manner as we’ve seen and which also led us to our conclusion.

Don't hold your breath

For those of you who believe the election of Barack Obama has ushered in a new era of post-racial politics, you would be sadly mistaken. According to columnist Ruben Navarette, Obama owes the Hispanic community for their support of Obama and (partial?) payment in return would be the selection of Bill Richardson as Secretary of State over Hillary Clinton.

Navarette stacks Clinton's resume’ against Richardson's and finds it lacking… which is an entirely reasonable approach to making your argument but apparently the overriding factor is the Good House Keeping Seal of Approval from La Raza: “His appointment would send a powerful message to Latinos throughout our country as well as to our neighbors in this hemisphere.”

And this message would be…? Look, a Latino!

Navarette also points out what he claims is Hillary’s shabby treatment of Obama during the primaries as grounds for not naming Clinton as SecState:

“Does anyone really think that if she had been elected president that she would be vetting Barack Obama for secretary of state?”

No, she wouldn’t as Obama is entirely unqualified for the job. But, we digress…

President elect Obama has run into his first snag with his selection of Eric Holder as AG but these little internecine squabbles as Obama’s various “support factions” come knocking to get of piece of theirs may force us to break out our diversity scorecard to see how Obama’s appointments stack up against Bush’s.

P.S. We should point out that Navarette is not some wacko lefty but a centrist who sometimes fills in for Michael Medved on his radio program.

Two turkeys for the price of one

Chris Mortensen was on the Mike and Mike Show on ESPN earlier this morning and the subject of the Thanksgiving Day NFL games was brought up and specifically the pre-ordained always-a-Kennedy-in-the-Massachusetts-Senate seat nature of the Detroit Lions on turkey day. Mortensen said that for the first time their have been some rumblings in the league office that perhaps the NFL will shake things up and get some other teams in the Thanksgiving Day mix, i.e., as punishment for the Detroit Lions being a habitual joke. (The 0-11 Lions face a 10-1 Tennessee Titans tomorrow)

We would’ve thought that parading your hapless team on to the national stage every year to be openly mocked and ridiculed by the announcers and fans alike would’ve been incentive enough to get your franchise into some sort of competitive order but apparently it is not, so we welcome this change of heart from the NFL leadership and hope that this particular turkey receives no pardon.

Your much anticipated Mark Foley update

Representative Charles B. Rangel’s legal team is reviewing his tax records to determine whether the congressman received a homestead exemption on a house he owned in Washington while living in several rent-stabilized apartments in New York City.

The situation is potentially troublesome for Mr. Rangel, a Harlem Democrat who is already the subject of a wide-ranging internal House investigation stemming from an assortment of ethical concerns.

Like this:

But Congressional records and interviews show that Mr. Rangel was instrumental in preserving a lucrative tax loophole that benefited an oil-drilling company last year, while at the same time its chief executive was pledging $1 million to the project, the Charles B. Rangel School of Public Service.

Think anything of substance will come of all this? Unless cell phones are involved, neither do we.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

We are not worthy

We're not usually one for those "inspirational"-type videos but this one was simply remarkable and we wanted to share.

Carl Joseph was born with just one leg but went on to letter eight times in sports in high school and play college football. He was recently inducted into the Florida Sports Hall of Fame. His story is in video below:

Rick Chandler interviews Joseph over at Deadspin and where the commenters are in top-notch form.


In [ ], the laws that governed America’s financial service sector were antiquated and anti-competitive. The [ ]Administration fought to modernize those laws to increase competition in traditional banking, insurance, and securities industries to give consumers and small businesses more choices and lower costs. In [ ], the [ ] Administration broke another decades-old logjam by allowing banks to branch across state lines in the Riegle-Neal Interstate Banking and Branching Efficiency Act of [ ]. President [ ] fought for and won financial modernization legislation, signing the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act in November [ ].

Of course, all this redacting is a set-up as you can probably figure out which Presidential administration was at the fore of this flurry of deregulation rather than the one who is being blamed for it.

We found another gem in a document issued by the Clinton Administration touting their domestic/economic accomplishments:

Strengthened the Community Reinvestment Act. In 1995, the Administration updated the Community Reinvestment Act regulations to focus on banks’ actual service delivery, rather than on compliance efforts. From 1993 to 1998, lenders subject to the law increased mortgage lending to low- and moderate-income families by 80 percent—more than twice the rate they increased mortgage lending to other income groups.

(emphasis ours)

This all represents a bit of a conflict for the President-elect as it will be Clinton’s deregulation efforts he will be overturning and not Bush’s (much non-existent) deregulation efforts and which Obama had attacked during the campaign.

And the situation becomes even more interesting when it looks like for all the talk of Bush’s 3rd term or Carter’s 2nd term, Obama’s cabinet selections (Clinton’s own TreasSec, Larry Summers for Obama’s, anyone?) are making this look like Clinton III.

Stay tuned.


FCS playoff pairings announced - commenters erupt

That would be Division 1-AA for most of us, still.

One of the “advantages” shills for the BCS like to point out in the wizard-behind-the-curtain nature of the BCS rankings process is that the resulting controversy of this entirely opaque process means that “everybody is talking about it” and “it generates a ‘buzz’”.

But do you know what else generates a buzz? Drinking malt liquor through a straw – and like the BCS-induced high, we don’t recommend it for minors, pregnant women or while operating heavy machinery… or anybody else, for that matter.

And by this logic, then, the NCAA men’s basketball tournament, the most perfect playoff system on the planet is a complete dud… because no one talks about it. No one takes off work on the first-round Thursdays and Fridays, no one goes to Vegas during the tournament, company computer servers don’t overload or even crash because no one is streaming live video over the ‘net during working hours and mostly, NO ONE ever participates in the, technically illegal, tournament office pools.

Seriously, what is this March Madness you speak of?

Anyway, the matchups can be found here at AOL Fanhouse accompanyed by vigorous commenting by disgruntled fans.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Programming Alert

Some pressing familial obligations and yes, turkey-scarfing may take us out of pocket over the impending Thanksgiving weekend so blogging may be light but we did want to alert you to a couple of things:

First, the good news: Some employees at Verizon got axed for accessing the phone records of a very public U.S. citizen.

Second, the bad news: Some government employees got off with a veritable wrist slap 4-week suspension for accessing (with intent to distribute) the tax records and child support records of another very public U.S. citizen.

Now, take a wild-ass guess to whom we are referring and take part in the poll over at the The Liberator Today to give your opinion on just how you feel about all this?

And speaking of TLT, we contributed our first post to B-Daddy’s site which details the the ruling that strikes down the County’s cease and desist order for the congregants of the Guatay Christian Fellowship… or as the San Diego mullet wrap oddly titles its article on the same: "Church allowed to meet in bar."

We’re not sure if the author was trying to employ irony to amuse or be cute but either way the ridiculousness of this title bears no resemblance to the truth. Go check it out, the post that is, if you get a chance.

All that is old, made new again.

So what’s the car of tomorrow going to look like after the Detroit 3 takeov…, er, bailout?

"All new for 2012, the Pelosi GTxi SS/Rt Sport Edition is the mandatory American car so advanced it took $100 billion and an entire Congress to design it. We started with same reliable 7-way hybrid ethanol-biodeisel-electric-clean coal-wind-solar-pedal power plant behind the base model Pelosi, but packed it with extra oomph and the sassy styling pizazz that tells the world that 1974 Detroit is back again -- with a vengeance."

Iowahawk has more here.

Victory in Iraq

Its been kind of hectic around here of late but that's no excuse for missing a very important date on the calendar and in this nation's history.

Please read B-Daddy's post here which links to a fine piece by Gateway Pundit.

Mark your calendars as such.

What's the first clue the latest economic stimulus package is a piece of crap...?

When it shows up on the President's desk, his first day in office.

“I think Congress will work with the president elect starting now and will have a major stimulus package on his desk by Inauguration Day,” Schumer said. “I think it has to be deep. My view it has to be between five and $700 billion.”

Story here.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

The sadly obligatory "modern dating scene" post

“What happened to all the nice guys?” His answer: “You did. You ignored the nice guy. You used him for emotional intimacy without reciprocating, in kind, with physical intimacy.” Women, he says, are actually not attracted to men who hold doors for them, give them hinted-for Christmas gifts, or listen to their sorrows. Such a man, our Recovering Nice Guy continues, probably “came to realize that, if he wanted a woman like you, he’d have to act more like the boyfriend that you had. He probably cleaned up his look, started making some money, and generally acted like more of an asshole than he ever wanted to be.”

And KT has a good read on the continued emasculation of the gruffer sex, here.

A couple years back, we were at a birthday dinner party at a nice restaurant in Point Loma with Mongo and six or seven women when the subject of “man dates” came up. Us: “Mandates…? Bad news. The government needs to get out of the business of establishing qualitative quotas that run counter to the efficiency of the market and which further may inhibit competition…” Blank stares all around.

“No, moron – ‘man dates’”

“Huh?” An apparent cultural phenomena has swept past us unnoticed.

“Yeah, the latest thing is for guys to take a break from their hectic schedule to get together at a nice restaurant and catch up with each other.”

“Catch up on what?”

“You’re hopeless.”

“Listen, if we’re going to plunk down coin at a nice restaurant in order to ‘catch up’, it’s damn sure going to be with someone better looking than Mongo.”

But to assuage any doubters out there that your humble bloggers aren’t hip to late-breaking social trends, we dug out a picture laying out the scene of what may have qualified as our latest ‘man date’ at P.B. Bar and Grill on a college football Saturday earlier this month.

And more to the point, though, of the linked article that goes on about muddled gender identities and thus muddled gender dating roles and expectations, we wish to assure everyone, we aren’t confused, we’re just inept.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

So... what are all you up to?

Getting our Floyd of Rosedale on and smoking some ribs for Mongo's 40th birthday extravaganza.

Tailgate-worthy "Charger ribs":

For 3 to 4 lbs. of beef back ribs (double quantities below for the ~8 lbs. as shown)

1 teaspoon of salt and black pepper as rub

Smoke for 1 - 1-1/2 hrs. over mesquite coals sprinkled with soaked hickory chips. Don't forget the drip pan underneath the ribs.


1 large onion, finely chopped
1/2 cup catsup
1/2 cup honey
1 - 4 oz. can of diced green chile peppers, drained
1 tablespoon chile powder
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 teaspoon dry mustard

Let sauce simmer on low heat for about ten minutes before applying to ribs during the final grilling. Continue grilling until glazed.

Continuing to beat that drum

"...the second rule of moral psychology is that morality is not just about how we treat each other; it is also about binding groups together, supporting essential institutions, and living in a sanctified and noble way."

Tied-in to the sneering condescension of the “failure of the free market” is fundamental lack of understanding of the above concept. When the learned class tell us that the free market failed, they ignore that what was at the core of the financial crisis was a break down of standard morality… of trust…. of self-discipline.

Those who blame avarice and greed and capitalism/free market see the market as the cause for the breakdown in morality. It doesn’t work that way. The free market is merely the mechanism by which the most efficient results (good or bad) are obtained. Garbage in/Garbage out. Fraud, deceit, coercion, cooked books in/Financial meltdown out.

Please read B-Daddy’s excellent post here on markets, morality and… the Pope?

Germany's constitution does not appear to be very constitutional

First, the good news: Germany dropped its pursuit of a ban on Scientology after finding insufficient evidence of illegal activity, security officials said Friday.

Now, the bad news: What the hell were they doing trying to ban Scientology in the first place? And what were the alleged crimes? Well, it turns out that Scientologists are mean or as a Government report on extremism puts it: "seeks to limit or rescind basic and human rights, such as the right to develop one's personality and the right to be treated equally."

This ban, of course, would put an end to this untoward behavior of the Church by limiting or rescinding basic and human rights such as freedom of worship.

We aren’t scholars of the German constitution so maybe our post title was a little presumptuous as it’s entirely possible that the German constitution is a wonderful document its just the application of the same that gives pause.

Erhart Koerting, Berlin’s top security official would certainly lend credence to this theory: "This organization pursues goals — through its writings, its concept and its disrespect for minorities — that we cannot tolerate and that we consider in violation of the constitution. But they put very little of this into practice, The appraisal of the government at the moment is that (Scientology) is a lousy organization, but it is not an organization that we have to take a hammer to."

Well, that should make everyone feel a little more at ease.

And why do we get the feeling that similar to the No on 8 crowd concentrating their protests to the pastiest white church in the pastiest white neighborhood in San Diego, this persecution of the kooks in the CoS is only because their wackiness and general unpopularity makes them an easy target.

Friday, November 21, 2008

It's Rivalry Week and yes, Evil walks among us once again.

Because of some scheduling shifts and down years for fabled programs (Michigan vs. Ohio St.), this year’s Rivalry week ain’t what it once was but… it’s still Rivalry week.

First, the BCS rankings going into this weekend:

1. Alabama .9787
2. Texas Tech .9698
3. Texas .8911
4. Florida .8755
5. Oklahoma .8388
6. USC .7873
7. Utah .7643
8. Penn St. .6957
9. Boise St. .6559
10. Ohio St. .6154

Obviously, the biggest game this weekend is the defacto BCS quarterfinal matchup between Texas Tech and Oklahoma in Norman. If Tech wins then it’s on to the defacto semis in the Big 12 conference championship against Missouri and then to the BCS title game. Tech, of course, controls its own destiny but does Oklahoma? Will an Oklahoma victory (currently, a 6-1/2 pt. favorite) vault them over Texas to whom they lost by 10 earlier this year? We’re going to find out because we like Oklahoma at home though we’re finding it difficult to root against the magic carpet ride that has been Tech’s season thus far.

We're ready. Consider it done. After contemplating this move since before last season, we’re pleased to confer “Evil” status upon Florida Gator head coach, Urban Meyer. After a 56-6 pasting of South Carolina and the last coach to hold “Evil” status, Steve Spurrier who also coached at Florida while wearing the crown, the symmetry was too perfect to pass up. Just one year seperated from winning the BCS title, Meyer has reloaded, is absolutely crushing his opponents since that loss to Ole Miss at the end of September and is ready to get back to the BCS title game with victories over the Citadel(?), Florida State and ‘Bama in the SEC championship game. Obviously, there are no guarantees but Florida is, as they say in the biz, “playing the best football in the nation, right now”.

But, “USC fatigue”…? Stewart Mandel of points out that the country’s infatuation with Pete Carroll’s Trojans has faded somewhat as the Big 12 South has garnered, and rightly so, the lion’s share of the country’s affection. No superstars (Bush, Leinart), a weak conference and more baffling in-conference losses the past 2-3 seasons have the viewing and voting public casting their gaze elsewhere. Look, SC is still a hottie but college football fans are always looking to upgrade.

And for all you BCS haters out there and we know you are legion there appears to be a simple solution to all the potential confusion, particularly for those non-BCS conference teams like Utah and Boise St. who, should they win out, might find themselves conveniently air-brushed from history.

"Yes, Boise State and Utah are undefeated, but if there are no such teams as Boise State and Utah, considering them for a national title shot becomes a nonissue," said David Frohnmayer, chair of the BCS Presidential Oversight Committee, who acknowledged that many BCS voters already used a limited version of the technique."

Oh, don’t laugh, Oklahoma. You may be getting the same treatment should you go all chaos on the BCS and beat T-Tech on Saturday. More here from The Onion.

Enjoy the games!

Picture of the Day

Remember, folks… What’s good news for the U.S. consumer is bad news for Thomas Friedman.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Quote of the Day

"There's so much Obama hero worship, we're having to walk this line where we can't directly criticize him," he said. "But we are expressing concern."

- Kevin Martin, executive director of Peace Action on Obama's inclinations towards Democratic insiders who voted for the War in Iraq for top cabinet posts.

Don't you worry your pretty little head, Kev. We've got that angle covered.

Forced to dust off some old talking points (UPDATED)

In a propaganda salvo by Al Qaeda aimed at undercutting the enthusiasm of Muslims worldwide about the American election, Osama bin Laden’s top deputy condemned President-elect Barack Obama as a “house Negro” who would continue a campaign against Islam that Al Qaeda’s leaders said was begun by President Bush.

Being holed-up in caves and cut-off from the outside world for the past few years, it’s understandable that Al Qaeda brass might have mistakenly thought Americans elected Clarence Thomas President.

UPDATE #1: It’s all over for Al-Qaeda – Diversity training in the waiting.

Here’s Evan Kohlmann, NBC News’ house terrorism analyst:

"Because, you know, Al-Qaeda itself has had problems with racism and bigotry within the ranks, and it was only about a decade and a half ago that Al-Qaeda was paying different salaries to its Arab members and its black African members. And the person administering that financial scheme, that payment scheme, is now the number three in charge of Al-Qaeda. He wasn't demoted, he wasn't punished for this, he was promoted. So I think the question is, is Al-Qaeda really in a position to be, you know, spouting off about the evils of racism when clearly they have as much problem with it as anybody else."

We swear it – this quote wasn’t pulled from The Onion – he really said it. Dude is actually concerned that the deadliest terror network on the face of the planet may in fact be racist. Dear God, No!

Well, Al-Qaeda has crossed the line now. With this revelation that Al-Qaeda is not, in fact, a thoroughly enlightened and diversity-embracing organization, Big Media has leveled its sites on it and it will only be a matter of time before Al-Qaeda big shots are tracked down by Code Pink commandos and forced against their will into East Bay re-education camps.

Get used to it, folks. This is the sort of menatality that will inform those responsible for our safety for the next four years.

Oh, for cryin' out loud...another Nazi reference?

(cue breathless voice)

The theory is almost too perfect to be true. Barack Obama, the son of politically progressive parents, was born Aug. 4, 1961—almost nine months to the day after John F. Kennedy was elected to the White House. Is it possible Obama was conceived on that historic night?

And if so, could history repeat itself? In the hours and days since Obama's victory, many of his exhilarated supporters have been, shall we say, in the mood for love. And though it's too soon to know for sure, experts aren't ruling out the possibility of an Obama baby boom.

More silly and banal journalism from People, er, Newsweek here.

Would we be so impolite to add that there were similar shag-a-thons that led to a baby boom in the wake of Hitler’s bombing of London during WWII? Apparently, we would.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

…and which resulted in no beheadings, beatings or imprisonments.

"A heated parliamentary debate on the U.S.-Iraq security treaty was called to an early close Wednesday as lawmakers loyal to anti-U.S. cleric Muqtada al-Sadr scuffled with security guards for the foreign minister and the speaker of the legislature and his two deputies.

The session was chaotic from the start, with lawmakers shouting at each other. Speaker Mahmoud al-Mashhadani added to the din by repeatedly yelling at legislators to sit down or keep quiet, but failed to restore order."

Full story here.

Ah yes. More signs of a burgeoning, bickering and brawling democracy in the Middle East. A thing to behold, indeed.

Meet the new boss... same as the old boss

Another potential historic moment for women is denied by Obama as it appears that Clintonista, Eric Holder, will be his choice as Attorney General over the speculative front-runner, Janet Napolitano, current governor of Arizona.

Holder’s role was aptly described as “unconscionable” by a congressional committee. He steered Rich’s allies to retain the influential former White House counsel Jack Quinn (Holder later conceded he hoped Quinn would help him become attorney general in a Gore administration); he helped Quinn directly lobby Clinton, doing an end-run around the standard pardon process (including DOJ’s pardon attorney); and he kept the deliberations hidden from the district U.S. attorney and investigative agencies prosecuting Rich so they couldn’t learn about the pardon application and register their objections.

More here from NRO

"Ready, Fire, Aim"

OK, we get it. We get that he’s the chairman of the banking committee that is responsible for holding these hearings but isn’t Chris Dodd the last person on the face of the planet who should be taking a leadership role in a bailout hearing?

Fortunately, a new term has entered the socio-political lexicon that is making it tough sledding for the Detroit 3 to get their mitts into the public till: “Bailout Fatigue.”


And Michael Barone argues here that the structure of the American auto industry is outdated, antiquated and well… totally not cool.

McArdle, native of a similarly bedraggled industrial area (Upstate New York) and an Obama supporter, further argues that the capital invested in keeping the hulk of the Detroit Three operating pretty much as they are, unprofitably, will not be available to those whose startups could morph into the Microsofts and FedExes of the future. We don't know who today's Bill Gateses and Fred Smiths are, but markets sure have a better chance of finding them than the federal government.

Obama's presidential campaign was an entrepreneurial enterprise whose success owed much to harnessing individual initiative through an innovative management structure and creatively using emerging technology. The campaign, as well as the candidate, helped inspire under-30 voters, who preferred Obama by an unprecedented 66 percent to 32 percent margin — as opposed to his 50 percent to 49 percent margin in those 30 and over.

But keeping the Detroit Three in their present form, with their extravagant health care benefits and the union's 5,000 pages of work rules, is an exercise in preserving in amber the America of the past.

And lastly, Bailout Sleuth doing that voodoo that they do so well: naming names – has the latest roundup of banks who have been partly nationalized.

P.S.Post title is a from a quote from Republican senator, Richard Shelby, on the somewhat haphazard approach being applied to the this financial crisis.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008


The Chinese that live under the oppressive thumb of Maoist communism would appear to take the issue of eminent domain and property rights just a tad more seriously than us freedom-loving Americans.

A crowd of 1,000 people stormed a local Communist Party headquarters in northwest China, smashing cars and clashing with police following a land dispute, government officials said Tuesday.

At least 60 people—officials, police, and protesters—were injured in the riots, according to a statement on the government Web site of Longnan city, where the unrest occurred.

The protest initially began Monday with just a small group of people complaining about the demolition of their homes to make way for a new road in Longnan in Gansu province, according to an official from the local Communist Party surnamed Wang.
But by nightfall, the crowd swelled to as many as 1,000 as more people joined the demonstration, the city's statement said.

"Instigated by a small number of people with ulterior motives, some unlawful people started to storm the city government building and attacked government officials from the petitioning office," it said.

"Ulterior motives". Nice.

Protests are common in China over land seizures and corrupt officials. Local government officials often confiscate land for infrastructure and housing projects, with little or no compensation.
Forgive us that thrill that is running up our leg, currently.

"Hard is not Hopeless"

What if a country won a war and no one heard?

Here we look at war as armed conflict between opposing forces, and do our best to keep people informed about what's going on in the wars in which the United States is involved. But we keep an eye on Washington, too, as decisions made there can have obvious impact on the actual war. Their words and deeds can simplify and complicate the life or death tasks with which we are confronted. This is the ideal; politicians engaged and aware of the issues they debate, hopefully achieving a consensus that meets the needs of the republic and reflects the will of a majority of informed Americans. But over the past two years the ideal approached the absurd as the reality gap between the war in Washington and the actual war in Iraq widened and Americans were informed by media with standing armies in Washington completely overwhelming a small corps of reporters in Iraq.

In this series we'll examine that "war in Washington" and the widening of that gap, in hopes of explaining to at least a few members of that public exactly why a war was won without their knowledge or consent.

This is how it began.

(emphasis ours)

More here from the Mudville Gazette

P.S. The title is a quote from General David Petraeus at his Senate confirmation hearing for promotion to his post as head of the U.S. forces in Iraq and where he also made his case for the Surge.

Untapped potential, thankfully.

With so many bone-headed ideas being thrown around Capitol Hill with respect to how to get the economy jump-started, there’s only a finite number, thank G*d, that can be acted upon. B-Daddy has today’s lesson in free markets, election year pandering and 3.2 slices of pi….?

Mark Cuban may be in trouble with the Feds but he's got our back.

Dallas Maverick owner, Mark Cuban is facing SEC charges of insider trading regarding his sale of stock. We mention this only as a lead-in for what the outspoken, often controversial and luxury-suite eschewing billionaire should be mentioned.

Cuban has founded a website called Bailout Sleuth which is dedicated to tracking all that jack that is being thrown at the banks by the federal government and identifying those specific banks that are the target of federal largesse because Paulson won’t.

Here’s a quaint bit of self-evident mission-stating from the site:

Some readers have asked why BailoutSleuth keeps publishing these roundups of banks that were chosen for government aid. We're doing it because the Treasury Department is not. That agency has taken the position that it will disclose the investments only after the money changes hands - a policy that makes it harder for the public to raise objections.

Our lists come from press releases issued by participating banks.

You gotta love it. The Treasury Dept. is going to stay mum but the banks themselves can’t wait to shout it from the mountain top to customers and investors alike that help is on the way!

We salute you, Mr. Cuban. A blogroll shall be forthcoming.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Dedicated public servant, Dr. James Hansen, would appreciate it if bloggers would just mind their own business.

"A surreal scientific blunder last week raised a huge question mark about the temperature records that underpin the worldwide alarm over global warming. On Monday, Nasa's Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS), which is run by Al Gore's chief scientific ally, Dr James Hansen, and is one of four bodies responsible for monitoring global temperatures, announced that last month was the hottest October on record."

If by “blunder” one means “cooking the books” then, yes, Dr. Hansen’s outfit would appear to have blundered.

"In the US, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration registered 63 local snowfall records and 115 lowest-ever temperatures for the month, and ranked it as only the 70th-warmest October in 114 years.
So what explained the anomaly? GISS's computerised temperature maps seemed to show readings across a large part of Russia had been up to 10 degrees higher than normal. But when expert readers of the two leading warming-sceptic blogs, Watts Up With That and Climate Audit, began detailed analysis of the GISS data they made an astonishing discovery. The reason for the freak figures was that scores of temperature records from Russia and elsewhere were not based on October readings at all. Figures from the previous month had simply been carried over and repeated two months running."
(emphasis ours)

Wait, it gets better. In order to save face and stubbornly cling to their own falsity that this past October was the hottest on record, the GISS revised the Russian figures downward and to balance-out those new lower numbers mysteriously claimed to have discovered a new “hot spot” in the Arctic - in a month when satellite images were showing Arctic sea-ice recovering so fast from its summer melt that three weeks ago it was 30 per cent more extensive than at the same time last year.

Hey, where are you going… there’s more. When you get on a roll like the GISS is, there’s just no telling when the “blundering” will stop.

A GISS spokesman lamely explained that the reason for the error in the Russian figures was that they were obtained from another body, and that GISS did not have resources to exercise proper quality control over the data it was supplied with. This is an astonishing admission: the figures published by Dr Hansen's institute are not only one of the four data sets that the UN's Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) relies on to promote its case for global warming, but they are the most widely quoted, since they consistently show higher temperatures than the others.

We didn’t experience what we have been told is the pure bliss of a statistics course but isn’t one of the basic principles of the discipline to (where applicable) throw out the high and low scores. “… but they are the most widely quoted, since they consistently show higher temperatures than the others.” Nope. No agenda, here.

Excellent. National and global policy decisions on the environment and the economy will be made in part from data presented by an outfit so inept and corrupt (quite possibly, both) they are not quite sure whether to lie about their own figures or blame it on someone else.

Read entire article here, which recounts another time Hansen was nailed by those damn bloggers and about another one of Big Al’s buddies, a choo-choo engineer turned climate science expert.

Chargers make history... and perhaps their season

We were informed that the Chargers defense played well yesterday in their loss at Pittsburgh, 11-10. After all, they kept the Steelers out of the end zone. They also allowed, again, over 400 yards of offense including 300 in the air and most importantly, could not get a stop either at the end of the game or at the end of the half when they needed it – giving up field goals both times, either of which would’ve provided the margin of victory if denied. And the installation of Ron Rivera as defensive coordinator has resulted in more pressure on the quarterback but has yet to result in a linebacking corps or secondary that can execute sound fundamentals when wrapping-up and/or tackling.

Philip Rivers is one of the highest-rated passers in the game but he has shown a disturbing tendency to make huge mistakes at the most inopportune of times. His decision-making has actually regressed since the first part of the season as witnessed by getting stripped of the football in the end zone after holding on to the ball for too long a time which resulted in a safety in the first half and then throwing a horrible interception in the red zone right before the half in which either a field goal or a touchdown could’ve provided the margin of victory.

LT has shown flashes of his old self and does appear to be fully recovered from his injured right big toe but the usage of one of the most dynamic offensive weapons in football remains wholly unimaginative and at times inexplicable (it should be pretty well established by now that with the way the offensive line is blocking, sending LT up the middle is probably not going to net you your desired result).

Right now, this team is 4-6 and has placed itself in a position of having to win the remaining 6 games to even have any hope of getting a wild card spot as Denver, the current division leader, keeps finding ways to pull out victories in the 4th quarter as opposed to merely backing into them as is the Charger way this year when they do find themselves in the fortunate position of being ahead in the last frame.

Had the Chargers not flailed so miserably up to this point, being on the short end of a history-making score in Pittsburgh (none of the 28,000+ games played to date in the NFL have ended in an 11-10 score) to put their record at 7-3 or maybe 6-4 may have elicited a “we’ll get’m next time” but in a game they had to have a “we’ll see ya next year” may be more appropriate.

Bomb the Pentagon... get tenured

"...forget it, Jake. It's Chinatown."

After absorbing enough about the Obama/Ayers “relationship” it’s become pretty clear to us that, yeah…. lay off Obama! Seriously, it was like so long ago and can one swing a dead cat or have a political career coming up through the ranks in Chicago politics without wittingly or unwittingly rubbing elbows with domestic terrorist or racist preacher or two?

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Theocracy freakout in 5...4...3...2...

We think its safe to say that the rabid-ness of a fan base’s devotion to its team is directly proportional to the creepiness of what is hung on its walls or placed on the mantle.

It doesn’t surprise us then that the diorama you see below is for the unbridled Kentucky Wildcat in you. Yes, they are offering this testament to your passion for Kentucky hoops for only $1,000 and yes, that is indeed a real cat that has been taxidermed(?) by Stuffman of Hoot-N-Nannies Taxidermy.

Read all about it plus the wonderful commenting, here, at DeadSpin.

H/T: AOL Fanhouse

Video of the day

Mongo was kind enough to pass along this video of some Afghan soldiers prepping for battle with the comment: "And then he had to get to 7-11 for some Doritos".

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Theocracy Rescue

...while we're at the family compound with family celebrating Thanksgiving. Don't ask... just eat.

The Government proposes a revamped drug policy... crackheads hopeful.

KT has more here.

Radio KBwD is on the Air

With over 3,500 songs loaded onto our iPod, this song popped twice this past week... we figured it was a sign.

You know the artist… or at least one of the artists but you may not know the song. This duet is a re-uniting of sorts of the Cherokee Cowboys that also included Roger “King of the Road” Miller and Johnny Paycheck from back in the late '50s. We loved the sweet but sorrowful sound of this ballad.

Ladies and Gentlemen, from the great state of Texas, we are proud to present Willie Nelson and Ray Price (…and Crystal Gayle on backing vocals?) performing “Faded Love”.

Hooray! We've arrived!

"...within a centrally planned economic system, the distribution and allocation of all resources and goods would devolve onto a small group..."

Well, we're there. The wheels of our government are firmly in the rut of the road that Hayek describes.

B-Daddy who has been on a roll of late has more here.

Friday, November 14, 2008

I Got Mine! Pt. II

Warren Buffet is a big fan of the “estate tax” (aka the “death tax”) reasoning that dynastic wealth is not healthy for a democracy. We had some thoughts on Buffett and the death tax, previously. But is he being hypocritical for the manner of his donations to the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation?

All of this leaves me perplexed by the way Buffett is contributing the bulk of his assets to the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. Buffett has received excellent legal advice to guarantee that his contributions will not generate federal tax. This provokes the question: Why?
Buffett could give his fortune to the Gates Foundation in a manner which generates federal tax. This would leave less for the foundation but more for the federal fisc. Indeed, Bill Gates, like Warren Buffett, advocates retaining the federal estate tax. He too could leave his assets to his foundation in a fashion which would share part of those assets with Uncle Sam

On the surface, we’re inclined to give Buffett a pass on this as his reasoning for the death tax was based upon the federal government merely being that instrument which would prohibit the continuance of this supposed dynastic wealth. Buffett’s logic did not seem to account for the death tax serving as a way to line the government’s pocket.

However, given that charities these days often become tax shelters in themselves and which profer their largesse in the form of salaries to its executives (family members?) and board members as well as other goodies via “administrative fees”, any sort of black and white conclusion becomes difficult to attain.

We do however, strongly resent now more than ever, Buffett’s support of the death tax. The fact that the government can take half of what a man who has worked hard for (and which has already been taxed on the front end) and invested wisely in order to leave behind as a down payment on a house for his children or as tuition help for his grandchildren strikes us as the actions of an out-of-control government that needs to be taken out at the knees.

So, again.... Screw you, Buffett!

Know the President...sell a book.

“We had served together on the board of a foundation, knew one another as neighbors and family friends, held an initial fund-raiser at my house, where I’d made a small donation to his earliest political campaign” (from a new afterword in Bill Ayers' 2001 book "Fugative Days: Memoirs of an Antiwar Activist")

Now that the election is over and Bill Ayers has provided a little more clarity as to the extent of their relationship than what the President-elect perhaps recalls, the best perspective on this given the breezy treatment of the whole episode is given by HotAir commenter, clnurnberg:

"Ayers is officially downgraded to a cool human interest story, 'Isn’t it neat that the president knows rebels like this? It’s practically Che!'"

P.S. By the time you read this, Ayers will have been on Good Morning America to plug his book.

Returning to some core competencies

OK. Here are the BCS standings and accompanying mystic numerology going into this weekend’s action with the Top 10 below:

1. Alabama .9814
2. Texas Tech .9715
3. Texas .8798
4. Florida . 8640
5. Oklahoma .8444
6. USC .7896
7. Utah .7692
8. Penn St. .6839
9. Boise St. .6783
10. Georgia .6156

At this point, ‘Bama, Texas Tech and Florida control their own destiny, everybody else is going to need some help. Potential regular “trip-ups” prior to the SEC and Big 12 championship games are Alabama at home to Miss. St. on Saturday, Florida at home Saturday to the Gators’ ol’ ball coach Steve Spurrier and South Carolina and then on the road Nov. 29 vs. a resurgent 19th-ranked Florida State. Texas Tech will play its own elimination game against Oklahoma on Nov. 22 at Oklahoma. BCS honchos are indeed praying for a “win out” scenario as it’s the least chaotic, although we know that’s not going to happen.

Some other thoughts:

At what point does the BCS start introducing some conflicts of interest? Take this weekend’s matchup of #7-ranked Utah vs. lowly San Diego State where State stands to lose $500,000 if they beat Utah. Utah, if it beats State and then No. 17 BYU next Saturday stands to play in a BCS bowl game which will result in a $9 million windfall for the Mountain West Conference of which $ 4 mil would be Utah’s take with the balance split between the other conference schools of which State is a member. Of course, we’re not suggesting anything untoward, but $ 500 large is not chump change to a struggling program like San Diego St and…. what’s one win against Utah in an already completely dismal 1-9 season? Stop it… stop it, right there.

Its faint, its quiet but for the first time you hear it. In the wake of Notre Dame’s “actually, could’ve been a lot worse” 17-0 loss at the hands of the hated little Catholics of Boston College, the mumblings regarding the fate of Charlie Weis’s coaching tenure at Notre Dame can be heard. Notre Dame is currently 5-4 with games remaining against at Navy, Syracuse and then out here on the coast against USC… so let’s just pencil them in for a bowl-eligible 7-5 (we’re being optimistic with that “win” against the mighty Midshipmen on Saturday). Upside: Weis could point to “progress” as their win total increased from 3 wins last season to 7 this season plus a bowl appearance. Downside: this season’s schedule was very manageable and many pre-season prognostications had them finishing with 9 wins. Bottom line: He is in year 3 of a 10-year contract. Our guess is that he is not going anywhere for a while.

Still not convinced that anyone plays any “D” in the Big 12. Take a look at some of these scores from last week. Half the conferences participants rang up scores of 35 points or more. Sorry, this shouldn’t be happening in the “best conference in the nation”.

Philip Fulmer is out at Tennessee after this season. Speculation is rampant on who will get the job. But is Tennessee a “good” job? Were not sure if Tennessee is a good job or not but it certainly is a strange job, at least in terms of its own conference. Tennessee is a football-crazy university in a state that is not necessarily football crazy. This puts it at odds with the other traditional powers in the SEC like Georgia, Florida and Alabama that are football-crazy institutions that also reside in football-crazy states that generate scads of Div. I-caliber talent that those respective schools do not have to cross state lines to recruit. As a result, Tennessee has always had to pursue a national recruiting strategy much like other schools that are in the same boat like Oklahoma, Nebraska and Notre Dame (actually, much of Oklahoma’s “national” recruiting strategy over the years has been the state of Texas). Former Raider head coach and USC offensive coordinator, Lane Kiffin is supposedly in the running and with his ties to the West Coast and particularly the fertile prep recruiting grounds of Southern California, Tennessee’s inherent recruiting strategy makes Kiffin an intriguing pick.

Enjoy the games tomorrow!

Thursday, November 13, 2008

And in other news today...

Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson doesn't hold press conference.... stocks rebound.

Your much anticipated post-Prop. 8 roundup

Cool, interactive maps of California displaying everything you would ever want to know about the fundraising and voting patterns state and countywide (L.A./Orange County) for the Proposition courtesy the L.A. Times here.

Instapundit has directed its readers to several posts at Gay Patriot (we love monolith-defying blog titles) whose central theme has been, “Where are the grown-ups?” Click on link and begin scrolling down.

And where are the grown-ups indeed? We keep reading about these protests that have been going on around the state since last week and wonder what it is that’s being protesting. We understand the No on 8 set may be angry, frustrated and may want to just blow off some steam but what is it exactly that they are protesting?

And wanting to vent and work out some angst is cool but this isn’t. The No on 8 crowd has a huge PR issue on their hands right now because of ugly incidents like the one in the linked video that took place in Palm Springs a couple of nights ago.

People will vote their conscious on what they believe to be principled grounds regarding Prop. 8… to a point. The point to which we refer is that tipping point when voters read about firefighters forced to participate in highly charged sexual events like the Gay Pride parade here in San Diego and the “teachable moments” of grade schoolers being taken to the same-sex wedding of their teacher or the treatment of the lady in the video and decide that “no, these are not the type of people I wish to support”.

Look at the video and ask yourself where they lost you. Was it the unrelenting in-your-face badgering of the woman? Was it the physical denial of that woman from being interviewed by the reporter? Or was it, possibly, where the woman appears to be knocked and/or shoved to where the cross she was carrying was loosed (or taken) from here grasp and then stomped on by these people?

Its sickening and it’s a shame. We have more than a handful of gay friends, acquaintances and co-workers and we know they would be disgusted by this. Rapidly disappearing, though, is the opportunity for any sort of rational civil discourse on the fate of same-sex marriage.


Some of this stuff is just like waiting for the other shoe to drop, anymore.

David Shuster, an anchor for the cable news network, said on air Monday that Martin Eisenstadt, a McCain policy adviser, had come forth and identified himself as the source of a Fox News Channel story saying Palin had mistakenly believed Africa was a country instead of a continent.

Eisenstadt identifies himself on a blog as a senior fellow at the Harding Institute for Freedom and Democracy. Yet neither he nor the institute exist; each is part of a hoax dreamed up by a filmmaker named Eitan Gorlin and his partner, Dan Mirvish, the New York Times reported Wednesday.

It would appear we have a “vetting” issue. But, wait… it gets better...

The hoax was limited to the identity of the source in the story about Palin — not the Fox News story itself. While Palin has denied that she mistook Africa for a country, the veracity of that report was not put in question by the revelation that Eisenstadt is a phony.

Fake but True…? It just never ends with these people. The degree by which their desire to play CYA over that of desiring journalistic integrity is staggering.

And before we go, the most pathetic excuse of the day:

And in July, Jonathan Stein of Mother Jones magazine blogged an item about Eisenstadt speaking on Iraqi television about a casino in Baghdad's "Green Zone."

Stein later realized he'd been had.

"Kudos to the inventor of this whole thing," Stein wrote. "My only consolation is that if I had as much time on my hands as he clearly does, I probably would have figured this out and saved myself a fair amount of embarrassment."

Full story here.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

We ran as fast as we could but still were not able to escape the awfulness of it all.

We couldn’t successfully campaign to get T.V. monitor above our treadmill at the gym switched to hoops on ESPN this evening so we were forced to watch Hardball on MSNBC and the playback of the video of Bush on his regrets. His list: The “dead or alive” and “bring it on” remarks and the “Mission Accomplished” banner.

We nearly fell off the treadmill….

That’s what he regretted? Was this some kind of joke? Is this how he is going to spend his last days in office… kissing liberal ass..? for what….? Talking tough?

The man spent 8 years in Washington D.C. single-handedly destroying the Republican brand and he’s reduced to apologizing for speaking from the gut when our nation was at war and for a banner that was meant as a salute to this nation’s armed forces for indeed toppling the regime of Sadaam Hussein, all so that Bob Herbert of Newsweek might say nice things about him? Excuse us, Bob Herbert of the lying, intentionally misleading and journalistically negligent Newsweek.

8 years of “compassionate conservatism” and bipartisan crap like No Child Left Behind, CFRA and Amnesty thinking that might buy him some cross-aisle goodwill and he’s going to apologize for Olberman-fodder? Wonderful.

8 years and a half-assed attempt to reform social security and another half-assed attempt to pull the Raines in on Freddie and Fannie (oh yes we did), presiding over the nationalization of the banking industry and putting future generations on the hook for these colossal bailouts and he’s apologizing for wanting to salute the troops?.

Herbert did say that Bush looked like he had checked out already… like a quarterback in the locker room after the game explaining to reporters the interception he threw to lose the ballgame and we can’t argue with him on that account.

Well, guess what? You’re still on the clock for another 69 days, Tex and that means it’s Pardon Season and while you may be making the rounds in legacy-building mode, there are a few people we’re going to suggest be on that list if harbor any hopes of salvaging your sad domestic legacy in these parts. Let’s just say a couple of border patrol agents and a man whose nickname is synonymous with small, motorized two-wheelers better be at the top of the list.

Yeah, bring it on.

Commenter Picture Caption of the Day

...courtesy Awful Announcing

"Wife: Honey, I'm really tired. Do we really have to go to this party at the moontower?
MM: Hey, hey, hey, watch the leather man!"
- Birdman

28 years ago today?

(..... ) won the White House by campaigning against an unpopular incumbent in a time of economic anxiety and lingering foreign policy concerns. He offered voters an upbeat message, praised the nation as a land of opportunity, promised tax cuts to just about everyone, and overcame doubts about his experience with a strong performance in the presidential debates.

If we’re playing fill-in the blank here you get credit for entering either Barack Obama's or Ronald Reagan’s name. And this again, bolsters our contention that the gleeful dirt-shoveling of many in Big Media on the graves of Reagan ideology and conservatism is not only premature but bordering on intellectual dishonesty as there is scant evidence this country wants to make any sharp veer to the left.

Indeed, the most liberal member of the Senate made a middle-class tax cut his closing argument and as Williiam Kristol points out in his article here, that though the nation gave a big victory to the Democrats, polling indicated no real perceptible shift in conservative/liberal/moderate ideological identification. (Recall, also, Bill Clinton campaigned on a (undelivered) tax cutting platform in ’92)

In fact, as this article from Scott Rasmussen points out and from which the opening paragraph was pulled, the Reagan “brand” remains very much a popular one with the voting electorate which polling also suggests is not keen on the bailout plans.

So what does all this mean? It means that the G.O.P. will be getting its just desserts here for a while for abandoning many core conservative principles. It also means the voting public will be watching the new administration very carefully with respect to policy and legislation, especially regarding the bailouts and this much-ballyhooed tax cut.

Bucketfulls of Bush-era policies like the executive ban on federal funding of embryonic stem-cell research is going out the window as soon as Obama takes office but that is the price Republicans will pay for their backsliding.

It would appear that the silver-lining of this economy is that it may prove to be an effective “containment” for any big government shenanigans in which Obama may want to engage. The ‘Kos kiddies will take extreme umbrage with that development but…. that will be the President's problem, not ours.

H/T: Blue Crab Blvd.

Programming Alert

Our bro, B-Daddy has shut things down for the time being at TILoBO and started up a new site at The Liberator Today which will champion the principles of free markets, free trade, freedom of speech and equal justice for all human beings. From his first post:

The intellectual underpinnings of limited government always face an uphill fight in the war of ideas. Advocates of bigger government point to some problem, and there always is one, and say, "we can solve this if we have the will," not adding "and your tax dollars." That the solutions then cause more problems is only gravy on the turkey for the left, because new problems have been created to "solve." It is a challenge to propose less intrusive solutions or to defend the position that no solution at all is really needed.

Please click on over there to read the entire thing. We have graciously been invited to guest blog from time to time but we really look forward to reading what B-Daddy has to say about the aforementioned principles of which he has been a fierce and articulate advocate for as long as we’ve known him.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Can't Imagine Living Anywhere Else

We would have completely missed this if we had not happened to look outside a few minutes before this picture was taken and seen the orange-ish hue that the evening sky had thrown on everything.

Must see T.V.

You're probably sitting back today and asking yourself, "Self, what did Google do today to honor the troops?"

(click to enlarge)


Veterans' Day 2008

Urban Miyares was stuffed into a body bag in Vietnam and lived to tell about it.

What Miyares, then a 20-year-old Army platoon sergeant, remembers of that day in August 1968 outside Saigon was advancing single file across rice paddy dikes when the silence was pierced by yelling, screaming, gunfire and mortar shells. His last recollection was falling face down into muddy water.

It was like a dream. Everything was spinning. Then I hit the water,” Miyares recalled.

Two days later he woke up in a military hospital. One of his 9th Infantry platoon colleagues checked on him and broke the news: An Army medic had pulled him out of a body bag.

Continue here.
And this is how you name a warship:

One of the Navy’s largest new surface warships will bear the name of a Navy SEAL who received the nation’s highest award for valor.
“DDG 1001, the second ship in our newest class of destroyers, will be named after Michael Monsoor,” Navy Secretary Donald Winter said remarks prepared for an address to be given Wednesday night in New York.

Garden Grove, California native, Michael Monsoor was posthumously awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor back in April. Our thoughts at the time, here.

Also, Information Dissemination is encouraging its readers to participate in a fund-raising drive that is operated by Soldiers' Angels. We’ve donated to these folks in the past. They’re a good and worthy outfit. Please read about ID’s experience with Soldier’s Angels.

And finally, a special shout-out to our two older brothers and our brother-in-law who served proudly in this nation’s armed forces. None of what we enjoy today in this, the greatest nation on Earth, is possible without the selfless sacrifices that have been made and continue to be made by the men and women in our armed forces. May God bless all of them.

This picture is a couple years old but remains one of the most moving we've seen. Pearl Harbor survivor Houston James of Dallas embraces Marine Staff Sgt. Mark Graunke Jr. during a Veterans Day commemoration in Dallas. Graunke lost a hand, a leg and and eye when he was injured by a bomb in Iraq.

H/T: BlackFive

Monday, November 10, 2008

We're getting the distinct impression these people would not have taken a loss well.

We were reading an article today in about the massive voter turnout that never happened when we ran across this:

It sort of calls into question some of the vaunted ground game discussion, the whole turnout machine,” said a Democratic strategist who did not want to be quoted by name criticizing Obama’s campaign. “The GOTV effort was redoubled in 2008 compared to 2004, but it did not seem to make that big of a difference.”

…. And these were the guys that won?

And check out Obama Transition Team honcho, Valerie Jarrett, on Meet the Press over the weekend talking about how Obama is prepared to “take power and being to rule Day One.”

Obama… dude… we’re trying to give you an even shake, here – but you need to get a grip on your website and some of your followers. This is getting beyond one or two simple slip-ups and/or gaffes and speaks directly to the perception of your imperious nature and the unreasonableness of your supporters.

(We were walking to the pub Saturday evening to watch some football and we came across a house that had a bunch of cars out front and red, white and blue balloons in the front yard. In that same front yard there was a sign that read “Obamanos”. Seriously, who the hell has a house party because their candidate got elected? Who in a white middle-class neighborhood does this…? Unreal.)

Then again, maybe we should be thankful Obama got elected. Given what we’ve seen to date, we’d hate to see what may have happened had Obama actually lost.

Happy Birthday, U.S. Marine Corps!

Congratulations to the men and women of the United States Marine Corp which turned 233 yrs. old today.

It's morning in America

The Federal Reserve is refusing to identify the recipients of almost $2 trillion of emergency loans from American taxpayers or the troubled assets the central bank is accepting as collateral.

Fed Chairman Ben S. Bernanke and Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson said in September they would comply with congressional demands for transparency in a $700 billion bailout of the banking system. Two months later, as the Fed lends far more than that in separate rescue programs that didn't require approval by Congress, Americans have no idea where their money is going or what securities the banks are pledging in return.

For those of you out there who still think the myriad of bailout plans that have been approved and those which remain out there for consideration are a good thing because “we had to do something”… enjoy your steaming bowl of something with a big fat side of “we told you so”.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

What is your favorite NBA team's Myers-Briggs typology?

Here’s a cool little political spectrum/personality trait-like graph we pulled from AOL Fan House that charts team quality (bad on bottom and progressing upward on the “Y”-axis through the better teams) and offensive tempo (plodding, walk-the-ball-up-court on the left progressing rightward on the “X”-axis to uptempo, fastbreaking… Showtime! offenses).

By this reckoning, the Lakers have the best and and one of the most uptempo team in the Association and we are inclined to agree. Laker center and wunderkind, 21-year old Andrew Bynum missed the 2nd half of last season and is just getting his sea legs underneath him again after playing so well before his knee injury. Because the Lakers played the last half of last season and made it to the Finals without him, its like they added a #1 overall draft pick-caliber player to the roster this season.

How stacked is this Laker team? We caught a little of a replay of a Lakers/Suns first round playoff game from 3 years ago where the Lakers had a starting lineup of Smush Parker, Kobe, Lamar Odom, Kwame Brown and Luke Walton. Good lord…. Only Kobe remains a starter and Lamar comes off the bench as a sixth man.

Another way to look at it is through the eyes of our little brother, “Matty” who asked us the other night how it is one can know how deep the Laker roster is. This didn’t take much thought knowing the utter disdain our brother holds for the play of this person so we replied, “Is it because Luke Walton and his game doesn’t see the light of day from the end of the bench?” Bingo. Hey, we like Walton. Smart, hard-working and completely void of any real NBA caliber athleticism. A starter 3 seasons ago to riding high pine this season so maybe Matty's one up on us.

The 4-0 Lakers take on the 3-3 Houston Rockets this evening at the Staples Center.