Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Tuesday Evening Quiz 07/31/07

Here are 3 puppets from yesteryear.
Can you identify them?

Signe Wilkinson at Slate

[click on cartoon to enlarge]

Republican Humor (prt. 23)

A Catholic Bishop went to the wilderness, camping with friends.

Suddenly, a young woman wearing a "Tree-hugger" shirt and a cap that said "Save the Wilderness" rushed into the campground, pursued by a grizzly bear. The bear seized the woman who tried to defend herself by hitting it with a "Save the Owls" placard.

As the Bishop watched horrified, a group of hunters came racing up.

One quickly fired a .44 magnum into the bear’s chest. The other two reached up and pulled the bleeding semiconscious leftist from the bear’s grasp. Using long clubs, the hunters finished off the bear and two of them threw it onto the bed of their truck while the other tenderly placed the injured tree hugger in the back seat.

The Bishop, impressed, summoned them. "I give you my blessing for your brave actions!" he told them. "I heard there was a bitter hatred between you NRA members and these environmental activists. Now I see with my own eyes that this is not true. You are truly kind and compassionate gentlemen. You have saved that girl's life." And the Bishop walked away.

One of the hunters said to his buddies, "Who the hell was that guy?"

"Oh, he's our Bishop," said his friend. "A very wise man."

"Well," the first hunter said, "He might know all about wisdom and forgiveness, but he don't know shit about baiting bears."

They're Coming To Take Me Away (File #1)

What the crazies among us are up to.

BEIJING -- Nothing says "I love you" like a photo frame made from panda poop. The Chengdu Giant Panda Breeding Base has come up with a dung-for-profit scheme that turns droppings from the endangered species into odor-free souvenirs ranging from bookmarks to Olympic-themed statues of the animals, state media and base officials said Monday.

Monday, July 30, 2007

Be Warned!

Techs hack into voting machines
July 28, 2007

WASHINGTON, July 28 (UPI) -- In a test sanctioned by the state of California, computer experts were able to hack into three of the largest U.S. electronic voting systems.

Techs found several ways to change the vote totals by breaking the codes to Diebold Election Systems, Hart InterCivic and Sequoia Voting Systems, the New York Times reported Saturday.

California officials released the results of their tests Friday, the same day House leaders in Washington announced an agreement to revamp voting systems and increase security.
COMMENT: If it can be done, it will be done. Manipulating vote totals and ballot boxes is an old scandal even in the US. The difference between electronic ballot box stuffing and the old fashioned kind is that it can be done on a massive scale and may not ever be traceable. Insist in your state on a paper ballot backup record.

Cow Pie of Outrage: Hillary's Boobs

It has been a long time since I hauled out the outrage machine to check what's inside. Here's a picture of it and an explanation of its purpose.

This is an outrage machine. It is used by journalists, political agitators, and religious convulsionists of various stripes. They place a little dab of bullshit under the machine and it pounds out a cow-pie of outrage. This can be flung hither and yon, smearing all over someone. In this way, something of very little significance can be converted into something that seems very outrageous. It is important that the outrage be manufactured rather than natural.

Some people like to pretend they're all upset.

Here's the current manufactured outrage:

WASHINGTON - Hillary Clinton's handlers are so outraged - outraged! - at a newspaper story musing over her showing a little cleavage that they're urging equally miffed supporters to fight back by stuffing cash into her coffers. CLICK FOR STORY

Here's what the original story said in the Washngton Post
"The cleavage, however, is an exceptional kind of flourish. After all, it's not a matter of what she's wearing but rather what's being revealed. It's tempting to say that the cleavage stirs the same kind of discomfort that might be churned up after spotting Rudy Giuliani with his shirt unbuttoned just a smidge too far. No one wants to see that. But really, it was more like catching a man with his fly unzipped. Just look away!" STORY HERE

Here's the picture:

Now is this a phony controversy? I ask you!

Monday morning friends report.

News about or from family or friends, or what I find in my e-mail, etc.

DASHMANN has been reading Curtis Granderson's blog. You can find it here: CLICK In case you hadn't heard, Granderson is this great person who plays for the Detroit Tigers and who my wife has fallen in love with because she's a disgusting dirty-old-woman.

OFFICER ED, the cop, reminds us to take our car keys to bed with us so that if someone breaks into the house, we can punch the panic button and the honking horn will probably scrare away the thug.

FELIX went to the Brickyard 400 in Indianapolis and we haven't heard from him since. But we have a lunch agreed to with him, with no date or place yet scheduled.

SPARTY sent a picture of his Republican son shaking hands with our Democratic Governor. Who wouldn't be proud?

JERRY sent this picture of "the remains of what is believed to be the first politician."

Answer to Quiz.

Quiz result revealed.

No one got the correct answer, therefore no gold stars. The guy strapped and blindfolded on the hospital gurney is John Walker Lindh also known as, "The American Taliban", "Jihad Johnny", and "Hamza Walker", among other things. He was captured on the battlefield in Afghanistan in 2001, fighting for the other side. He was charged with treason and other crimes, and he eventually pleaded guilty to lesser charges for which he received 20 years in prison without parole. CLICK

His prosecutor, and the architect of his plea bargain, was Michael Chertoff, who is now the utterly charming, competent and richly deserving Secretary of Homeland Security.

Women win again

The U.S. Women's Soccer Team defeated Japan 4-1. The next game will be August 12 against New Zealand with the U.S. team heavily favored.

Saturday, July 28, 2007

Wacko of the Week -- 07/28/07

The American medical profession:

You had both of these guys under sedation and under the knife and let them off scot-feee. It's all that Hippocratic oath crap isn't it?

These aren't the Wacko of the Week

SOME who were CONSIDERED but not chosen:

He went before Congress and lied. Now, I'm not the one saying that, the Director of the FBI is saying that and so is Senator Specter and Senator ... well, you get the idea. If you deliberately lie to Congress, and then change your story in the same session, you're in trouble. You're pretty close to Wacko.

Look, I have exceeded my Retch Factor for the week, so I'm passing on Lindsay for awhile; and besides, she's perfectly capable of speaking for herself, albeit, with slurred speech.

He's a good candidate for the award, not just because he's an alleged dog killer, not just because he's thrown away millions of dollars, but because he's a jerk.

These hateful creeps are very good candidates for the Wacko of the Week Award, if they're guilty. Oh, let's face it, I think they're guilty --- but if they did what they're accused of, they aren't just wacky, they're EVIL.

Friday, July 27, 2007

the guns of our fathers

Message to GBW and TVC about the 2nd Amendment and gun control.
(Continuing the discussion already started)

I think there's a lot of validity in what you say, but you go too far, in my humble opinion. It seems to me that you are clouding the issue, GBW, by getting ensnarled in the rights question. I'm willing to agree that in the 2nd Amendment there is some right for the citizenry to bear arms. But, you jump from that to claiming a God-given right, or a civil right, not just a legal right. You even call it a human right. I don't think it's all of those things. Sparty makes an explanation of this in his comment, and I think he's correct.

You also claim that the right extends to firearms, not just arms. The courts have agreed with you, even though the Constitution doesn't say firearms. The courts do not go so far as you seem to, and include just any weapon that comes along. Lots of weapons are not allowed. Clearly there are legal limits. Whether God agrees with these limits, I don't know, and I don't concede you the authority to speak for him.

There is such a huge difference between the killing power of guns as compared to other "tools" like knives, that lumping them together isn't helpful. I have seen a study somewhere that concluded that usually when people attack other people with knives and cudgels like baseball bats, they are not commonly intending to kill them, whereas when people shoot other people, they are. Guns are an especial problem because they can be used at a distance and they are very 'final'.

So, I don't believe the 2nd Amendment says, and I don't think it implies, and I don't think it has been interpreted as meaning that the right of everyone to keep and bear arms is an unrestricted one.

In her comment, Marsha says that the gun folks have distorted what the founding fathers had in mind and made " ...a willful misreading of their intentions." I thought this was a very astute reflection of what the unrestricted gun folks have done with the 2nd Amendment.

Clearly, there need to be more restrictions than there are. Society is groaning under the burden of all those guns going off. All those guns no longer protect "the security of a free state," they threaten it.

I think that all legal handguns should be capable of firing only one round without being reloaded. That would be a good start. The right of the people to keep arms would be preserved, history would be happy because that's what was meant when the law was written, and we would all have a running chance to escape with our lives.

Or do you think God meant everyone has a right to a six-shooter? A full-automatic? A machine gun? A surface-to-surface missile? Wait, you can't speak for God.

I have to add that I agree with almost all of what Scot sw said. His point about this being a matter of public policy rather than a matter of untouchable rights is important.

just a note

I'm surprised that four days have gone by and no one has --accurately --identified the Tuesday Morning Quiz guy.

BIRCHES under fire (reposting)

Over at "Great Blue Whale" GBW has extended a discussion he began on my blog. This concerns the right to keep and bear arms, the 2nd Amendment. You will find the first part of the discussion on BIRCHES below at "Another Dude Misunderstands Second Amendment" CLICK

GBW is arguing for an unrestricted view of the 2nd Amendment --- that people have an absolute civil right to own firearms. I disagree with this very strongly and think the country is littered with gun-shot bodies because of that notion.

A number of people have added to the discussion both under "comments" on my blog and "comments" on his blog. CLICK FOR GREATBLUEWHALE

One important fact about GBW is that he is reasonable and civil, and well-spoken. I appreciate that.

People who read my blog have probably figured out that I have a sarcastic and negative view of gun ownership and violence. I invite you to join the civilized discussion.

black gold

Hey Guys! Great News!

Exxon posted a profit of over 10 billion dollars.

How wonderful it is that one of our fine companies leads the world in oil --- ummm --- profits!

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Free Bush!

There is a story appearing here and there online [CLICK HERE FOR ONE EXAMPLE ] that some of Bush's advisers consider his ridiculously low popularity among the people to be "liberating."

Presumably with numbers this low, there is no point in trying to please people, so he can just go ahead and do whatever he wants. I can't help thinking this is just nuts. Talk about "Newspeak."* An alternative idea might be that he ought to work harder to manifest the popular will --- for example, getting those troops out of Iraq as fast as possible. Instead of liberating himself from democratic responsibilities, maybe he could liberate himself from his disasterous policies.

For true liberation, the guy ought to resign. Go home.

The Republicans used to argue that we do not live in a democracy, we live in a republic. This distinction was forged in order to make the point that our elected leaders represent us and govern for us. Well, this is sort of the ultimate test of that isn't it?

George Orwell, where are you when we need you?


* n. -Deliberately ambiguous and contradictory language used to mislead and manipulate the public. [From Newspeak, a language invented by George Orwell in the novel 1984.] CLICK

Actress, Whore Arrested


Actress Lindsay Lohan, when arrested Tuesday, denied that the cocaine found in the pocket of her pants was hers:

"I am innocent... did not do drugs they're not mine. I was almost hit by my assistant Tarin's mom I appreciate everyone giving me my privacy,"

Prostitute Limber Lowhand, when arrested Tuesday, denied that the diseased vagina found in her pants was hers:

"I tell ya, I'm not guilty ... do not flop for cash. That is not my crotch, it belongs to my mom, or someone like that, now leave me the hell alone."

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

More Gold

Two more Gold Stars Awarded!

Imagine me waking up this morning to discover that both Felix and Marsha had sent answers to last week's Quiz, identifying W.C. Fields as the guy Mae West had to work with but simply could not tolerate. They starred together in My Little Chickadee

Two winners in one morning! Almost as good as chocolate donuts for breakfast.

Tuesday Evening Quiz 07/24/07

Explain this. Who is it? What's going on here?

Talking to a Yooper

At Curtis, Michigan, we went into an ice cream parlor, about the only thing in town, besides the bar, still open at 9 p.m.

Pat: "Boy you sure don't have cell phone service up here, do you?"

Parlor Girl: "Oh, really? Usually if you go up to the elementary school or out to the end of the dock, you can make a call."


And if you happen to be in the area, definitely stop for lunch or dinner at Chamberlin's Ol' Forest Inn. It's a great old place, more than a century old, and the people are wonderful. We haven't stayed there, but it looks like a great place to spend a night.


Goodbye Dick Goodwin

Richard H. Goodwin, a pioneering land preservationist and early president of the Nature Conservancy who negotiated the conservation group's first land purchase in California, a 3,000-acre stretch of virgin forest along the state's northern coast, has died. He was 96.

"His visionary leadership in land conservation established the foundations for not only the Conservancy, but the modern conservation movement..." [ TNC STORY, CLICK ]

Monday, July 23, 2007

Another Dude Misunderstands 2nd Amendment

Looks like we're gonna haf-ta ask our teachers to explain in better detail the 2nd Amendment to the Constitution cuz so many people have such touble understanding who and who not to shoot. You ain't 'pose-ta shoot your own family, freaky people. Use your guns to protect "the security of a free state," you dummy.

Today's example:

4 Dead, 2 Wounded in Atlanta Shootings
Associated Press Writer
July 23, 2007, 11:50 AM EDT

ATLANTA -- A man neighbors described as a retired factory worker shot three people to death and wounded two others before killing himself in a southwest Atlanta home Monday, authorities said.

All of the victims were believed to be related, Atlanta police spokesman Eric Schwartz said.

Gold Star

Gold Star for Alice who knew that the Tuesday Quiz picture was Mae West, and she was able to quote some famous lines.

She did not know who Mae had developed such a hatred for. Any takers on that one?

Here's a more famous picture of Mae West, who in her heyday was a real sex symbol :

Monday morning friends report.

NINE A.M. update:
MARSHA has been elected some high-falutin' Alumni Association board
(if there is such a thing). So, CONGRATULATIONS to Marsha.

MIKE CARROLL almost from Carrollton, sent a report on the U.S.S. New York, a new transport ship in the Navy. It is capable of carrying a fully equipped battalion of Marines to a trouble spot in the world. Interestingly, it contains in its construction, tons of metal from the World Trade Center rubble. The ship was named by special request of Governor Pataki.

FELIX says that he's been lax about writing but that he's very busy and old and tired. Felix may be busy and tired, but he's not old, and I'm not going to let him off on that phony claim. But, I do know he's busy and that whenever he sends me email, I'm glad to get it. He makes me smile a lot!

IRENE and her family are back in Australia after a long vacation in the States. She's now also back to reading our blog and commenting. Thanks, Irene, I really appreciate it. Also, you have some of the greatest kids in the world!

SCOT got some good news about an investment in the stock market, so he says he's bragging. Bragging I guess because he made a very clever pick and it's paying off. Congratulations. :)

DASHMANN has had many compliments about his story of the murder trial. Not only was it a good story, he's an excellent writer. Now he's traveling with Mrs. D. in New York to visit inlaws. From outlaws to inlaws. Interesting life!

This is MARSHA's favorite picture from our trip to Philadelphia last month. It seems to be just a street scene, but these gentlemen were just so well and colorfully dressed that taking their picture was irresistible. So she did.

(Click on picture to make it larger)

Sunday, July 22, 2007

HOME From the U.P.

We went up by Pike Lake in the Eastern Upper Peninsula. This is in Luce County, shown on this map. Luce County is a wonderful place in the summer if you like wilderness, deer sightings, and miles and miles of backcountry roads. Luce County is a great place for those who seek solitude.

While there, we stopped in at a "resort" pictured here. It is, as a matter of fact, for sale. CLICK

If you were to buy it, you would have to adjust to no electricity and no neighbors within gunshot. There is, however, a very rustic state forest campground with lots of beauty and none of the comforts, and at least occasionally peopled by very nice outdoors folk, and the sometimes wayward bear. (We were assured that this time of year, bears are "on the move.") CLICK

The nearest towns are Paradise, which is 29 miles away and has more than 100 residents, and Newberry which is about 30 miles away and has about 3000 residents all of whom, we've found, are wonderful.

I say these things as if I were a city-slicker, but I want y'all to know that I have wilderness camped (thanks to my kid Steve) with no electricity, no towns anywhere nearby, no running water, and no cell phone service. I mean I ain't just no big city dude, ya know.

At Pike Lake Resort, I spoke with a very cheerful lady, and made a joke:

I- "We are looking for the end of the world so we can look over the edge. Am I there yet?"

She: (with scarcely a second of consideration and with a slight twinkle in her eye): "Almost, honey. You have about 50 miles to go."

ahh, so true

(click on cartoon to enlarge)
* Slate Clay Jones


Friday, July 20, 2007

Wacko of the Week -- 07/21/07

Luis Miguel Gomez

Father takes 10 year-old son running with bulls in Spain

Quote from Associated Press CLICK

"Spanish television last week captured images of the boy smiling as he ran ahead of a pack of charging bulls with his father, Luis Miguel Gomez.

"The images angered Pamplona city officials — and the man's ex-wife.

"According to city regulations, runners in the San Fermin festival must be 18 years old. The national television channel interviewed the child, and photographs of him and his father were published in several newspapers. When Gomez's ex-wife saw them, she took her case to the police.

"On Monday, a judge in the town of Fuenlabrada, southeast of Madrid, revoked the father's visitation rights. Judge Adolfo Carretero told The Associated Press that Gomez put "the little boy's life in danger."

"Last week, Pamplona city officials fined the father $200. Gomez told city officials he wanted to run with his son in other Spanish bull runs."

A light through the Leaves

For the American people are a very generous people and will forgive almost any weakness, with the possible exception of stupidity.
(Will Rogers)

Hillary was talking. Ye-Gods!

Defense Department official criticizes Mrs. Clinton for talking.


(This is the pompous Hillary attacker:)

Hillary is a big girl and she can take care of herself. She has money, power, position, and friends in high places. She doesn't need me to defend her, and I'm not very inclined to do that anyhow. She doesn't know me, and if she did, she would be embarrassed --like everyone else -- to admit it.

Besides, this is a women who has been called a liar, a future's market manipulator, a lesbian, a drug runner, an adulterer, and a murderer. She's used to calumny, especially as the receiver of it, and I doubt if a day doesn't go by that she isn't fending off lies.

What interests me today about Hillary and her attackers is the nature of this particular attack. Some folks in the Department of Defense have accused her of aiding and abetting the enemy, by talking about ending the war in Iraq.

Speaking of Cinton, a Defense Department manure-spreader said:

"Premature and public discussion of the withdrawal of U.S. forces from Iraq reinforces enemy propaganda that the United States will abandon its allies in Iraq, much as we are perceived to have done in Vietnam, Lebanon and Somalia."

In other words: If you talk about ending the war, you're abandoning our allies. I wish to beg your pardon, you pompous airbag. In a democracy, discussion should be expected. It should even be ENCOURAGED. You, sir, are the traitor not Mrs. Clinton or the other millions of Americans who wish to discuss your messed up war.

So, while I'm not here to back Hillary, I am here to back democracy.

Here's one other thing: The use of the word "premature" interests me. If after all these years, 450 billion dollars, hundreds of thousands of deaths, it's not yet time to discuss ending the war, when would be? I would like to know when it would be 'mature' to discuss these things.

Any idea there, guys?

DISCLAIMER: No one at this blog has a candidate for President yet. We aren't supportng anyone so far, if ever.

Thursday, July 19, 2007

.... a few billion here and there ....


Estimated cost of the War in Iraq as of 5:30 p.m. (EDT) today (July 19, 2007)