Thursday, May 31, 2007

What I Would Have Posted About...

If I hadn't gone out for my anniversary last night.

Bush irks "the base" with this immigration digs:
Rep. Brian Bilbray, R-Calif., head of the Immigration Reform Caucus, took offense at President Bush’s assertion that critics of a Senate immigration bill were determined to find fault with the measure by looking “at a narrow slice of it.”

“Amnesty for 12-20 million illegal immigrants isn’t a ‘narrow slice’ Mr. President, it’s the whole darn pie,” Bilbray said, in a press release.

Just the facts: The Fiscal Cost of Low-Skill Immigrants to the U.S. Taxpayer. A HUGE study done by the Heritage Foundation that SHOULD have been done by Congress before this bill was even drafted.
"Each year, families and individuals pay taxes to the government and receive back a wide variety of services and benefits. A fiscal deficit occurs when the benefits and services received by one group exceed the taxes paid. When such a deficit occurs, other groups must pay for the services and benefits of the group in deficit. Each year, govern­ment is involved in a large-scale transfer of resources between different social groups..."

Clinton espouses socialism once again: Shared Prosperity Should Replace 'On Your Own' Society:
"The Democratic senator said what the Bush administration touts as an ownership society really is an "on your own" society that has widened the gap between rich and poor.

"I prefer a 'we're all in it together' society," she said. "I believe our government can once again work for all Americans. It can promote the great American tradition of opportunity for all and special privileges for none."

We didn't think the possibility was still on the books, but finally a traitor is actually charged with treason.
" An American member of Al Qaeda warned President Bush to end American involvement in all Islamic lands or face an attack worse than the September 11, 2001, assault, according to a new videotape.

Wearing a white robe and a turban, Adam Yehiye Gadahn, who also goes by the name Azzam al-Amriki, said Al Qaeda would not negotiate on its demands.

"Your failure to heed our demands ... means that you and your people will ... experience things which will make you forget all about the horrors of September 11th, Afghanistan, and Iraq, and Virginia Tech," he said in the seven-minute video.

Mr. Gadahn, who has been charged in an American treason indictment with aiding Al Qaeda, spoke in English and the video carried Arabic subtitles." (source)

Marital Decade

I'm not a girly-girl about romance, Valentine's Day, flowers, or anniversaries... The Man gets annoyed because I'm the one that forgets what date we got married (actually, I never forget the date --I forget the year). He saved every letter I wrote him when I was in living in the UK and I kept not a one. I guess I have my mom to blame for that. Any little sentimental knick-knack was a potential "dust collector".

This is a big milestone though and it does mean something to me. I know people are losing bets everywhere. We got engaged 3 months after we started dating and married 3 months after that. I'm sure people either thought I was knocked up or they gave us "two years tops".

The other night I was looking through his box of my letters and I was shocked (and a tad embarrassed) at how mushy I was -I guess being a continent away will do that to a person. I had even written and sent him a POEM! Good Lord, I don't even remember doing such a thing --talk about how to lose a guy in 10 days! It's terrible. What was I thinking? I can’t write poetry…

Unspoken Promise (circa 1996)

Drawn into your light
Tonight I have fallen
Into the fire of your eyes.
You, my comrade in thought
Leave me bereft of excuse.
Nestle into my soul.
The courtship dance begins,
I falter with your every smile
Striving to keep up.
Tonight communication has
No words
Silent walls crumble,
Hope chisels brick.
I am hostage to the promise
Of you...

Well, obviously I had to marry the only man that ever inspired me to write (bad) poetry.

He actually wrote a lovely post yesterday -way more sentimental than mine (of course, it is tesco so there is a language warning)

Ten years later and I'm definitely sparing him the poems, but I'm just as sure that I made the right decision as I was that sunny May day 10 years ago (when we had to promise to have TVs set up all over the reception because the Flyers were in the playoffs...)

Guest Post, by Dude

As everybody knows, summer is blockbuster movie time. Yipeee!

Let's share, shall we? What is your favorite movie of all time?

What is the worst movie you have ever sat all the way through? No fair listing anything with Ben Afleck, as nobody has ever actually watched a whole one of those.

Defend your choices. No fair dogging anyone else, just talk about yours. Your favorite movie might not be anyone else's favorite because they didn't have that special someone with them at the time, or, well, ya know, whatever.

My favorite movie is Parenthood. There are so many lines that are applicable in everyday life, such as "Show him, honey" or "If I have to go you have to go!" And who could forget the roller coaster story. If you are a parent and haven't seen this, you should. You will have a new all time favorite.

The worst movie I have ever watched all of was Hostel. Just plain stupid, on top of being next to impossible to follow. For example, a goof, When Paxton's fingers are sawed off, you could see three of them are actually taken off. When he looks at his hand to see the damage, three fingers are visible. It's as if only two fingers were sawed off. Uh, hello, dude, NONE of his fingers were actually sawed off!!!! Who would ever watch so closely as to really care. Won't see Hostel II. After all, I don't believe in torture. Myself, that is.

Caption It...

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Sheehan Resigns...

"Cindy Sheehan said Tuesday she's done being the public face of the movement.

"I've been wondering why I'm killing myself and wondering why the Democrats caved in to George Bush," Sheehan told The Associated Press, "I'm going home for awhile to try and be normal," she said.

Sheehan wrote in her online diary on the Daily Kos blog: "Good-bye America ... you are not the country that I love and I finally realized no matter how much I sacrifice, I can't make you be that country unless you want it. It's up to you now."

Kristinn Taylor, spokesman for, which has held pro-troop rallies and counter-protests of anti-war demonstrations, said dwindling crowds at Sheehan's Crawford protests since her initial vigil may have led to her decision. But he also said he hopes she will now be able to heal.

"Her politics have hurt a lot of people, including the troops and their families, but most of us who support the war on terror understand she is hurt very deeply," Taylor said Tuesday. "Those she got involved with in the anti-war movement realize it was to their benefit to keep her in that stage of anger." (source)

HER sacrifice. HER face is the face of the anti-war movement.

Good luck with the trying to be normal thing Cindy. I think the first step might be not just saying your going to keep quiet, but actually doing it.

You can read the comments she got here, but I don't think you can comment --the Kos Kids, defenders of free speech, have added "Troll Ratings" to the site (whatever that means...).

Vacillating on the Threat of al Qaeda?

***WARNING: This link is beyond graphic and disturbing. Do not click the link if you already realize what we are up against and the disgusting nature of their existence.***

"The photos are alleged to show the bodies of U.S. service men in Iraq. It's difficult to confirm that these are the soldiers that were captured some 3 weeks ago.

However, the HAQ News Agency, an Arab language site (with a broken English version), reports in what it calls an "exclusive" that two of the soldiers have been found decapitated.

The English translation is pretty rough:

[The bodies] have appeared severe torture signs and with gotten head cut and the American forces that monitored 200 thousand dollar award to whom give them any information that led them to him.

[The American forces] continued searching for the third soldier in which [three] thousand of American soldiers deployed along with government forces..." (*Graphic link*)

...But for those of you who are becoming weak-willed about this fight, for those that think we are wasting time trying to wipe out Islamofascism...maybe you need to see this.

Lest you be tempted to argue that this couldn't have happened if we weren't in Iraq --let's remember the Ft. Dix plan, the Jose Padilla plot and the numerous would-be plots detailed in George Tenet's book that were thwarted by that evil Patriot Act and NSA wiretapping.

Chavez Puts and End to Private TV

For some reason, that still hasn't be adequately explained to me, the left glorifies Che Guevara, Fidel Castro and Hugo Chavez. Danny Glover has even signed a $19.7 million two-picture movie deal with the up and coming dictator.

"Rep. Connie Mack (R-Fla.) noted that Glover has "long been a supporter of Chavez's radical left-wing policies. He is also a member of the board of the television network TeleSur, a Chavez-funded network that has teamed up with Al-Jazeera to spread anti-democratic messages across Latin America." (source)

I wonder if the cheering section on the left will have anything to say about this:

Radio Caracas Television (the country’s oldest and most watched private television station), an opposition-allied station, went off the air at midnight on Sunday after President Hugo Chavez withdrew its license, accusing the network of “coup plotting.”

Seconds later, it was replaced with the insignia of TVES, the new state-funded channel launched by Mr Chavez, which was beamed via huge screens to Chavez supporters gathering in the streets at the President’s instigation.

...The move has fuelled accusations that Mr Chavez is moving towards an increasing authoritarian rule and quashing any dissent against his so-called “socialist revolution”. (source)

With each step Chavez takes closer to a Communist Dictatorship, it should be interesting to hear how Hollywood and the left'o'sphere will continue to pardon him.

Kucinich: Fascinating Little Man

There's so much more to Dennis than meets the eye... What a strange, yet fascinating, little man he is...

Everyone keeps talking about how young Fred Thompson's wife is ---and Newt's marital escapades, but what about good 'ol Denny?

He is 31 years older than his third wife. She's 30, he's 61. She's attractive and he's, well, a little scary. And he's not even rich -His net worth is estimated at $196,001 to $352,000. I had no idea he was such a stud. (source)

I hadn't heard this either:

"In the aftermath of the April 16th shooting in Blacksburg, Virginia, Kucinich is proposing a plan to address violence in America. Kucinich is currently drafting legislation that includes a ban on the purchase, sale, transfer, or possession of handguns by civilians." (source)

And of course his 12 Point Plan for Iraq:

--The U.S. announces it will end the occupation, close the military bases, and withdraw.
--The U.S. announces that it will use existing funds to bring the troops home and the necessary equipment home.
--We will order a simultaneous return of all U.S. contractors to the United States and turn over the contracting work to the Iraqi government.
--We'll convene a regional conference for the purpose of developing a security and stabilization force for Iraq.
--Prepare an international security peacekeeping force to move in, replacing U.S. troops, who then return home.
--Develop and fund a process of national reconciliation.
--We have to once again restart the programs for reconstructions and jobs for the Iraqi people.
--Reparations for the damage that's been done to the lives of Iraqis.
--Assuring the political sovereignty of Iraq and making sure that their oil isn't stolen.
--Repairing the Iraqi economy.
--Economic sovereignty for Iraq.
--An international truth and reconciliation process, which establishes a policy of truth and reconciliation between the people of the United States and Iraq.

Aren't you riveted? ;)

A Product of Hollywood or Most Young Americans?

This is an email Nicole Richie sent for her memorial Day Party:

From: Nicole Richie < > To: XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX Subject: Masha and Nicole's Memorial Day Party Date: Thu 24 Ma 2007 04:29:29 +0000

My fellow Americans its that time of year To celebrate our country by drinking massive amounts of beer Let's stand together as one, live the American dream Take shots, pass out, & wake up with our pants ripped open at the seems Let's glorify this day in your sluttiest tops and your tightest pair of tsubi jeans Even though we have no fucking clue what Memorial Day really means!!

Mashas House
Sunday May 28th, at 2pm
XXXXX Crest Court
Beverly Hills, Ca 90210

There will be a scale at the front door. No girls over 100 pounds allowed in. Start starving yourself now. See you all then!!!

Please make sure to RSVP as this is a large party and we need to keep track of who's coming. Thanks

Apparently people were not amused because she was "thumbing her nose at the people in rehab" --no mention of the having no clue what Memorial Day is all about. Lionel must be proud.

I took time from the teacher's lesson plan to explain Memorial Day to the first grade class I was subbing last Friday (not one of them knew what it was -the closest anyone got was to say "It's something to do with dead people"). I used to be nervous to do stuff ike that, but what's the worse that can happen? They don't call me anymore...?

(H/T: Perez)

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Populist Nominees

Remember the posts last week about Breck Boy? The 269 million and the soon-to-be-coming 50 million in pirate's booty? The charging over $50K for a poverty speech and the never-ending storied about being a mill worker's son? Well keep Silky Pony in mind as you read this hit piece on Fred Thompson...


Thompson is hardly the only Republican to have ridden phony populism to elective office.

Liberals, who go positively batty over such acts of political fraud, have no shortage of theories.

My colleague Jonathan Chait, who largely blames the press for enabling this scam: Republicans, according to him, realized long ago that political reporters are much more interested in making vague characterological pronouncements than reporting on matters of policy, or even relating biographical details. The GOP has exploited this quirk by placing character at the center of its campaign strategy, surrounding its candidates with the right atmospherics and mounting personal attacks on their opponents. Democrats, by contrast, believed themselves to be on the right side of most issues, and so they never invested much in these efforts..." (If you can stomach it, Read the entire article)

Is this a joke? The GOP has the copyright on the populist candidate? I really thought that second sentence was going to say "Liberals, who go positively batty over such acts of political fraud, have no shortage of their own poseurs." But when I continued and realized the author wasn't even going to acknowledge the amount of money in the corner of the limousine liberals who are still putting on hickish accents to "relate" to the people...well, let's just say I shouldn't have been surprised. But I am! Good Lord... That would be like me admonishing the left'o'sphere for using unflattering pictures of people on the right.

What Statement Did This Make?

"Vandals burned dozens of small American flags that decorated veterans' graves for Memorial Day and replaced many of them with hand-drawn swastikas, authorities said Monday.

Forty-six flag standards were found empty and another 33 flags were in charred tatters Sunday in the cemetery, authorities said. Swastikas drawn on paper appeared where 14 of the flags had been.

Members of the American Legion on this island off Washington's northwest coast replaced the burned flags with new ones Sunday afternoon.

The vandals struck again on Memorial Day after a guard left at dawn, the San Juan County sheriff's office said. This time, the vandals left 33 of the hand-drawn swastikas.

"This is not an act of free speech. This is a crime," Sheriff Bill Cumming said in a statement released Monday afternoon." (source)

It's difficult to put myself in someone's head that would desecrate graves on memorial day, allegation that these soldiers died for a Zionist controlled government??

Tuesday Question...

This popped into my head as I sat at a table full of Democrats (including the head of the Philadelphia Young Democrats) yesterday...

Could the fundamental difference between Conservatives and Liberals boil down to something as simple as how they view themselves in relation to the world? Does whether one considers themselves "American first and proud of it" or a "citizen of the world" first determine how they sort/judge all the other issues? Is jingoism the keystone of Conservatism?

Caption It...

Monday, May 28, 2007

Memorial Day 2007: Pennsylvania Heroes

"The purpose of all war is peace." -Saint Augustine

Capt. Jason M. West
Army Capt. Jason M. West, a Crafton native killed by gunfire in Iraq on July 24, grew up playing soldier in his living room and back yard.

After serving as an enlisted man, he wanted to become an officer. After one tour of duty in Iraq, he wanted a second.

He died in a battle in the city of Ar Ramadi serving a cause he believed in, in a calling he enjoyed, as a tank commander with the 1st Brigade of the 1st Infantry Division. (Jason was 28 years old, married and a college graduate. His funeral was desecrated by the The WBC Phelps Clan)

Marine Lance Cpl. Adam C. Conboy
Adam called his mother just five days before he was killed in Iraq asking her to send clean bedding for all his guys. "Operation bedding" to help diffuse the smell of 20 men in an old, hot schoolhouse.

"Operation Bedding has since grown from a son's spontaneous quip to a mother's tribute to her fallen Marine. Mary Conboy runs a homespun charity effort from her backyard, sending troops in Iraq packages that contain everything from bedding to sweat socks to canned tuna.

Adam Conboy's platoon got its packages by July, and the company that replaced it received the next shipment. Schools began sending donations, and Mary Conboy started getting requests from different military units interested in the care packages." (source)

Pennsylvania Army National Guard Spc. Mark W. Melcher
"My son believed in the cause. He loved his country. He gave his life for his country. You don't get any better than that," said his father, John L. Melcher Sr., of Ross.

"We are extremely proud of him. He was doing what he believed in, and he wanted to be there," his father said.

Melcher was assigned to Company C of the National Guard's 1st Battalion, 103rd Armor, based in Friedens, Somerset County." (source) (He also served in Kuwait during Operation Desert Storm).

National Guard Army Sgt. Francis J. Straub Jr.
Francis Straub Jr., 24, of Philadelphia, died Aug. 9 during an ambush in Beiji. He was based in Philadelphia.

"On his last trip home, Francis J. Straub Jr. showed his family pictures of him with Iraqi kids playing baseball and having fun.

While there he had also helped steer them donations of candy and flip-flops. "Frankie had the biggest heart in the world," said his father, Francis J. Straub Sr. "I love all my sons, but there's a special place in my heart for Frankie." He was "a completely selfless individual, always looking out for anyone," said a cousin, Melissa Leyland, and "always interested in what was going on in my life."

Army Sgt John T. Bubeck
John T. Bubeck called his mother on Christmas day. He ended the call with: "I'll go hassle the neighbors now, and preserve freedom, and save the world."

Shortly after that phone call, Bubeck and two other soldiers were fatally wounded after an improvised explosive device detonated near their vehicle in Baghdad, according to the Department of Defense. Bubeck died the next day.

Bubeck was assigned to the Ninth Engineer Battalion, Second Brigade Combat Team, of the Army's First Infantry Division out of Schweinfurt, Germany. He had been in Iraq less than three months.
"I was very proud of him, more proud than scared," his mother said. "I knew he'd done basic training and he was prepared.

"He was looking forward to it. He kept saying, 'I'm tired of sitting on the bench in the game. I want to get in.' "

His mother recalled a recent conversation in which he talked excitedly about a ride he had taken in a Black Hawk helicopter.

"He was my risk-taker. He liked the adventure, and he liked to be where the action was," she said.

"I could just picture him in his Superman cape," she continued." (source)

"I have never been able to think of the day as one of mourning; I have never quite been able to feel that half-masted flags were appropriate on Decoration Day. I have rather felt that the flag should be at the peak, because those whose dying we commemorate rejoiced in seeing it where their valor placed it. We honor them in a joyous, thankful, triumphant commemoration of what they did." ~Benjamin Harrison

**And this tribute to the troops was done by our very own Kat!!!!**

"The following is an original song, written and performed by me. I don't claim to be a professional singer (or one at all) and Jimi Hendrix may be turning over in his grave from my guitar playing, but it comes straight from the heart in hopes that you will remember to "Thank a Vet". -Kat, The Middle Ground:

Sunday, May 27, 2007

A Tribute and a Rant

There are many video tributes to the troops on YouTube, and a lot of really good ones. This one may be my favorite. It was made by a 15 year old sophomore who plans to enlist in the Army after high school. Her profile page says, "I only hope I can make America as proud as our troops have today, and I hope I can honor them in a way they deserve with my videos." I think she has.

Of course, this is a sampling of some of the brilliant responses she received:

"Thank you very much for wasting five minutes of my busy life. Congratulations on mastering the mecca of knowledge we all know as microsoft movie maker(Oh wait, I probably shouldn't be making making a muslim metaphor-you probably would claim I was a terrorist)." --oober349 (this genius' profile name is "Gansta Crossin')

"Thousands of great soldiers continue to be discharged while our country needs them. The republicans need to put this country's needs over the hatred their party promotes. But thousands continue to serve in shame, fighting for a country that doesn't consider them worthy of fighting for their country!" --lou773

My patience is running thin with the Keyboard Cowards that run rampant on the web. There are ways to disagree without being a colossal asswipe. It never bothered me that much before, but for some reason it really gets to me now. I KNOW these people are wallflowery social outcasts in "real" life. They have no one in their small misanthropic existences so they feel the need to make the virtual world stomach their wrath. Sorry guys, virtual people don't like you either and your asocial behavior is as obvious here as it was on the playground that scarred you.

(H/T: andy)

Saturday, May 26, 2007

Islamic Law: And You Thought You'd Heard Everything...

Thanks to the man, Jules Crittenden for posting the most insane thing I've read thus far...

You thought the ham sandwich was bad? Banning the letter "X"? Outlawing citizens from owning dog? Claiming Pokemon cards glorify Zionism? Oh no, these things now seem passé in light of breastfeeding your boss to make him "family".

Yeah, you read that right. In order to skirt Islamic law that says an unrelated man and woman can't be in the same room, but allowing people to keep their jobs --a woman can breastfeed her boss to "make him family" (or course this suckling must be documented).

"...The fatwa stated that a woman who is required to work in private with a man not of her immediate family - a situation that is forbidden by Islamic law - can resolve the problem by breastfeeding the man, which, according to shari’a, turns him into a member of her immediate family.

“Being together in private means being in a room with the door closed, so that nobody can see them… A man and a woman who are not family members are not permitted [to do this], because it raises suspicions and doubts. A man and a woman who are alone together are not [necessarily] having sex, but this possibility exists, and breastfeeding provides a solution to this problem… I also insist that the breastfeeding relationship be officially documented in writing… The contract will state that this woman has suckled this man… After this, the woman may remove her hijab and expose her hair in the man’s [presence]..." (source)

It's not everyday I'm left with absolutely nothing to say...

Do You Know State Capitals?

You Really Know Your State Capitals

You Got 18/20 State Capitals Correct

You're either a geography buff... or you have an excellent memory.

I hate that it doesn't tell you which ones you got wrong.

Friday, May 25, 2007

Finally, We Can Define Torture!

Not silky panties, not barking dogs, not high AC or heat and (though weird and gross) not naked Twister...

"...In a recent raid on an al-Qaeda safe house in Iraq, U.S. military officials recovered an assortment of crude drawings depicting torture methods like "blowtorch to the skin" and "eye removal." Along with the images, which you'll find on the following pages, soldiers seized various torture implements, like meat cleavers, whips, and wire cutters. Photos of those items can be seen here. The images, which were just declassified by the Department of Defense, also include a picture of a ramshackle Baghdad safe house described as an "al-Qaeda torture chamber." It was there, during an April 24 raid, that soldiers found a man suspended from the ceiling by a chain. According to the military, he had been abducted from his job and was being beaten daily by his captors. In a raid earlier this week, Coalition Forces freed five Iraqis who were found in a padlocked room in Karmah. The group, which included a boy, were reportedly beaten with chains, cables, and hoses. Photos showing injuries sustained by those captives can be found here." (source)

Now that I'm against.

Friday's Question

What talking point are you so sick of hearing that your head might explode when it starts coming out of someone's mouth?


"...It's not amnesty. Amnesty implies no penalty and there are fines in this bill."

Did they fax this statement out to every email addy in D.C.? Even Bush said it during his press conference yesterday and every pundit I heard discussing yesterday had the same line -word for word.

"Woman acquitted of illegal poop use"

Do I even need to write a post now? I find that (real) headline satisfying enough... In fact, that just might be the best headline I've ever seen.

"...A former Democratic Party activist who left dog feces on the doorstep of U.S. Rep. Marilyn Musgrave's Greeley office during last year's 4th Congressional District campaign was found not guilty Wednesday of criminal use of a noxious substance.

A Weld County jury deliberated about two hours before acquitting Kathleen Ensz of the misdemeanor count.

Ensz's lawyers never denied that their client left a Musgrave campaign brochure full of feces at the front door of the congresswoman's office. But they argued that Ensz was making a statement protected by free speech - the poop was a symbol of what she thought of Musgrave's politics.

"Her only intention of going over there was to make a political statement that Marilyn Musgrave's politics stink," attorney Shannon D. Lyons said after the verdict..." (source)

You heard it here first folks...poo is "free speech".

Women and Maps...

"...Sexual orientation and gender affects navigation skills, with straight men best at map reading and heterosexual women worst, according to a new study.

Researchers at the University of Warwick considered how we perform mental tasks in light of sexual preferences, with straight men performing better at map reading than gay men who in turn perform better than lesbians, who in turn do better than straight women.

But old age withers all men’s minds alike, and at a faster rate than women’s, according to Prof Elizabeth Maylor of the University of Warwick, who worked with Dr Stian Reimers of University College London on an online survey with the BBC, published in the Archives of Sexual Behaviour.

“This is a novel finding,” she said. “Only gender has an effect on rate of ageing, not sexual orientation.” (source)

For the record, not only can I read a map and successfully navigate a plan of action...but I can fold it back to its original form when I'm done. I think most women feign not being able to a) because they could care less b) doing the "I need a man to help me" bit. I hope that's the case anyway because it really doesn't take a rocket scientist...

Speaking of gay men...I had no idea they were "banned for life" from donating blood by the FDA.

Hillary Campaign Song Update

Last week I posted about Hillary's call for assistance with choosing a theme song for her campaign. As I suspected the ones named here in the comments were much more apropos than her suggestions (though I don't think anyone mentioned ELO's "Evil Woman"). Anyway, in case you haven't been paying attention to the aftermath on YouTube...

  • Poignant

  • Silly

  • Insane & Hillarious

  • Here are the "Top Write Ins" so far:

    "Are You Gonna Go My Way" -Lenny Kravitz
    "Every Little Thing She Does is Magic" -The Police
    "You and I" -Celine Dion
    "The best" -Tina Turner (source)

    Apparently someone wrote in with Justin Timberlake's "Sexy Back" --which leads me to believe that Hillary is writing in to herself...

    Caption It...

    Thursday, May 24, 2007

    This was Polled in the U.S....Not the M.E.

    One in four U.S. Muslims (under 30) said in a poll that suicide bombings to defend their religion are acceptable at least in some circumstances." (According to a new Pew Research Center Poll)

    "...That sentiment is strongest among those younger than 30. Two percent of them say it can often be justified, 13 percent say sometimes and 11 percent say rarely.

    "It is a hair-raising number," said Radwan Masmoudi, president of the Washington-based Center for the Study of Islam and Democracy, which promotes the compatibility of Islam with democracy.

    He said most supporters of the attacks likely assumed the context was a fight against occupation — a term Muslims often use to describe the conflict with Israel.

    U.S. Muslims have growing Internet and television access to extreme ideologies, he said, adding: "People, especially younger people, are susceptible to these ideas."

    Federal officials have warned the U.S. must guard against homegrown terrorism, as the British suffered with the London transit bombings of 2005." (source)

    25% of Muslims HERE think that it's okay to blow you up if they feel like you are threatening Islam.

    This becomes even scarier when you remember what sort of things are deemed a threat to the religion of peace: women elevated higher than a dog, ankles, cartoons, this post, Pokemon cards, the letter "X", non-Muslim filmmakers, free speech, Jews, Christians, homosexuals, and ham sandwiches...

    American President Hussein?

    My mom had a Professor years ago that told the class a Black man and a Jew would be President long before a Woman ever would. I don't know how I feel about that statement, but it popped into my head as I was reading this article:

    "...Democrat Barack Obama would defeat any of the three Republican front-runners - Rudy Giuliani, John McCain and Mitt Romney - in a head-to-head presidential election, but McCain and Giuliani would outpoll Democrats Hillary Clinton and John Edwards, a surprising new poll reveals.

    NewsMax has obtained in advance the results of the poll by Zogby International (, which will release the results later Wednesday night..." (source)

    FDT can beat Obama. Full stop.

    (I really should have saved that picture for a Caption It, shouldn't I?)

    Edwards: Now Entering the Third America

    Yesterday I posted about Edwards admonishing "two Americas" while charging a public University $55,000 for a speech about poverty...and last night I read something that made that even worse:

    "...The question of the day: Just how much of the $500 million sunken treasure found in the Atlantic last weekend belongs to Democratic presidential candidate John Edwards?

    I put a call in to Edwards' campaign yesterday morning to find out, but I haven't heard back yet.

    The reality? The populist one-term senator will get an undisclosed piece of the action from the sunken 17th-century galleon.

    The ship, laden with gold and silver, was found at the bottom of the Atlantic by a little-known exploration company, Florida-based Odyssey Marine Research.

    Edwards' personal financial disclosures show he's an investor in the exclusive Drawbridge Global Macro Fund, which owns the 9.9% stake in OMR.

    Ten percent of $500 million. After costs, of course." (source)

    This might qualify as a third America, don't you think? I don't even think Soros, Gates or Winfrey can lay claim to sunken treasure. I wonder if he'll be donating all of that to "even the playing field"...

    (H/T: Ghostie Alix)

    Would-Be Ft. Dix Terrorist Applied to the PPD

    "...One of the men accused this month of plotting to attack soldiers on Fort Dix recently applied to be a police officer in Philadelphia, a move some authorities think may have been an effort to infiltrate law enforcement agencies.

    Philadelphia Police Sgt. D.F. Pace said Wednesday that Serdar Tatar applied for a job there last month. "Based on what we know now, I don't think his intentions were good," Pace said.

    A second suspect in the case told the informant that Tatar wanted to join the U.S. Army so he could kill soldiers from the "inside," according to a court filing.

    "He had only one mind," a third suspect, Dritan Duka, told the informant, according to the court documents. "How to kill American soldiers." (source)

    To their credit the Philadelphia police Department rejected Tatar's application because he wasn't a U.S. citizen and hadn't lived in Philly long enough. It's a good thing too --a friend of mine has been on the list waiting to hear for months now.

    Tagged: This Won't Help Matters...

    The timing of getting tagged with an "eight things about ME" MeMe is quite amusing given the recent accusations of self-love... Nevertheless, Blue Collar Muse tagged me and I will accept.

    The Rules: Players start with 8 random facts about themselves. Those who are tagged should post these rules and their 8 random facts. Players should tag eight other people and notify them that they have been tagged.

    Random Fact #1) I hate pictures of myself. I always have. I am not photogenic and can't stand seeing myself in 2D. I prefer to be behind the camera. I put pictures up here (every 6 months or so) because I also have a strong belief that people should know who they are "talking" to. I have a Flickr account so I can comment on The Man's and so all the pics posted here go there.

    Random Fact #2) I adore the internet and I am so glad Gore invented it, but a horrid side effect is the anonymity of a virtual world allows people to be their very worst selves. Yes, Bloggers put themselves "out there" and many take tons of heat --but at the end of the day we're doing this on our free time and for free. On one site I even earned the title "Spew Mistress", which is fine by me...but isn't it funny that this Mistress of Spew has never gone on a site and attacked anyone? Some friends have asked how I deal with the personal attacks. It's easy actually. I am quite sure anyone that pent up and angry is a dorly little person going through life without the nerve to say anything to anyone. They are the postal workers ready to blow and the blogs are a place they can finally vent on the world behind the safety of a keyboard. Why would that person's opinion mean anything to me?

    Random Fact #3) I often get quite bored with politics. That becomes a problem when trying to maintain 2 political blogs. I get frustrated that debates are never settled and the same arguments go on and on forever.

    Random Fact #4) I love this site. I enjoy all the commenters. I'm glad it's not a serious, droll blog with serious and droll readers. I prefer it's the "Perez Hilton" of politics. It's serious when it needs to be with engaging debates and silly at times...because all politics all the time makes anyone a dull person. So thank you all for that.

    Random Fact #5) I write my 4-5 daily posts after most people are sleeping soundly. I'm an insomniac and always have been. But anyone that suffers from insomnia knows you’re awake but not always completely lucid. When people nit-pick about spelling and grammar and my beloved annoys the hell out of me. It's 2am and I'm up writing posts like an idiot when I'm going to get a call at 5:45 am to teach -so deal.

    Random Fact #6) If you couldn't already guess, I totally have PMS right now.

    Random Fact #7) I would love to have a co-blogger. Maybe someone a click or two left of center? Maybe someone farther right than me? Some fresh blood. But all my choices (sarcastic and succinct) have already been snapped up by IMAO.

    Random Fact #8) I stopped drinking all caffeine (coffee included) for almost 15 years and somehow I am now back to 3-4 cups per day. How the heck did that happen?

    *Bonus Random Fact #9) See Picture.

    These people are now "It":
    1) Consul-At-Arms
    2) Neptunus Lex
    3) Hummers & Cigarettes
    4) Bourgeois Deviant
    5) Just Rose
    6) Wyatt Erp
    7) First In
    8) AF Sis

    Wednesday, May 23, 2007

    Has Edwards Ever Been To the "Other" America?

    "...We still live in a country where there are two different, for all of those people who have lived the American dream and don't have to worry, and another for most Americans, everybody else who struggle to make ends meet every single day.
    ...I believe that we shouldn't have two different economies in America: one for people who are set for life, they know their kids and their grand-kids are going to be just fine; and then one for most Americans, people who live paycheck to paycheck."
    -Former Senator John Edwards (source)

    Edwards loves to perpetuate a class-warfare mentality when he's campaigning. That's his thing. What that says to me is that his campaign staff believes the American people are gullible and stupid. Anyone that heard one of these speeches would only have to Google "John Edwards + worth" and find that he made $1.25 million last year and he and Elizabeth have a combined worth of $29.5 million (source).

    That is more than most constituents he's preaching to would hope to have in 15 life times. Does his staff really hope that poor Americans will buy that his dad working in a mill gives him no-money street cred?

    When was the last time he was in the lesser of the two Americas? Was he ever? Proof that he can't even fathom the inconsistency he's pushing is the fact that he charged $55,000 to give a speech on poverty at the (taxpayer funded) University of California (and to a measly 1,800 people).

    "...According to Joe Martin, the public relations officer for UC Davis' Mondavi Center, the fee for a speech entitled, "Poverty, the Great Moral issue Facing America," was worth it to school officials.

    Martin told The San Francisco Chronicle that the center paid Edwards because at the time "he wasn't a (presidential) candidate and from our point of view, he was a speaker of interest that people in the community were clearly interested in ... we feel it's our mission to present those speakers."

    The speaking fee, which amounts to about $31 per audience member, was the highest Edwards earned in nine appearances last year at colleges and universities. In all, he earned $285,000 for the nine speeches.

    Incidentally, students at all of California's public universities will pay a 7 percent increase in tuition next year." (source)

    Past Post "Correction"
    RE: John Bruhns

    Last Friday I posted about John Bruhns -one of Edwards spokesmen and an OIF Veteran that made an anti-Iraq war commercial directed by Oliver Stone.

    The article I linked said that Bruhns was a member of Iraq Veterans Against the War and that he had proetested at Walter Reed with Code Pink.

    Bruhns contacted me and said that he was not a member of IVAW (which seems to be born out in this interview) and that he was protesting at Walter Reed because he thought it was being shut down. He claims that he didn't know of Code Pink's shenanigans and was only there twice and never went back.

    He's saying that Free Republic "slandered" him with this article. As I told him, I don't look to make my points by using half-truths or un-truths. I am posting this because if it isn't true it should be known.

    Here is our correspondence:

    First Email:
    "To Whom It May Concern:

    I am writing to you regarding this:

    I appreciate if you correct your record about me. I don't entirely disagree with your characterization of myself on your website.

    There are two points I would like for you to remove:

    1) I have been mistaken as a member of Iraq Vets Against The War. I am in no way, shape, or form a member of IVAW. Let's be clear -- I am not a member of IVAW.

    2) I attended the Walter Reed vigil back in 2005. I first went under the impression that the vigil was an attempt to keep the hospital open in retaliation to the BRAC decison to close it. I attended one more vigil the following week and never went back. Since then I have personally written to members of CODEPINK asking them to stop the WRAMC activity and to take my name off of their website because I do not support the vigil. So it's unfair for you to say that I attended several vigils. I am currently seeking advice from an attorney in response to FReeper postings about
    me to take legal action against those who misrepresent me on their website.
    It's pure slander.

    We obviously disagree with your views but I respect your right to have them. I only ask for the same courtesy. I am a veteran of the Iraq war with 8 honorable years of military service. I don't deserve this from others who disagree with my opinion.

    Please do not take my kindness for weakness.

    John Bruhns

    After I read this email I was going to post a simple correction without a second thought. As I said in the original post, my only quarrel with this Veteran was that he was protesting in front of Walter Reed. If he said it was a misunderstanding I would take him at his word. (A secondary quarrel would be his opposition to the Iraq war based on no al Qaeda and "people hating us", but CBFTW fought al Qeada in Iraq and had Iraqis tell him if the USA wouldn't have invaded they wanted to "fly to DC and ask George Bush to invade"). I wasn't too happy about the last line, as it seemed a bit like a threat, but I figured he's probably taking heat for this at his job and I'd let it go.

    BUT, before I got a chance to post a correction there was this email:

    "I don't know who you are , but you are not from Philly. I'm from Philly -- I grew up there. I'm a proud graduate of Roman (Broad and Vine). I'm a Mayfair boy from Northeast , Cottman and the Blvd. Can you name the Blvd?
    Probably not. You are probably a carpet bagger from suburbia. Please remove the slander about me from your website immediately."

    My response:

    "Dude, calm you think I sit in front of my computer all day? I am just reading your emails now. Once I read your email I had EVERY intention of posting a "correction" -though I shouldn't now after this shitty email. I don't look to prove my points through misleading people and if it's not true I don't want it up there. Actually I'll do you one better --I'll give you the forum and even offer you a chance to guest post to make your point, or I'll post your email to me. I'm fair and honest and not looking to screw anyone. It was a story and I posted it... The reasoning for the Walter Reed protest sounds a bit weak though. EVERYONE knows what Code Pink is doing down there. It's been all over the news/blogs forever.

    BTW, My dad was/is a Lt. in the Philly Fire Dept --so yes, if you're from Philly you know that I HAD to live in Philly because of that. And I worked on that Blvd. (that I supposedly can't name) in High school -You might not be old enough to remember Bakers in the Roosevelt Mall where you probably shopped at Way Out... Dayum, feelin' silly?

    Don't be a prick before you talk to someone --it's a WAY uncool side effect of the internet. You would never threaten me or act like that to my face (I hope) so you shouldn't do it from behind a keyboard either. It's rude and I'm sure it's not the manners that you were taught in the military and I'm sure you'd be pissed if someone wrote your mom the emails you wrote me.

    You want your moment. Write something up and I'll post it tomorrow. Make it good though. My site readers are almost all active duty or Veterans.

    -The PHILLY Girl"

    I didn't hear back from him.

    There you have -complete and full disclosure. Jeez, my karma is off this week.

    UPDATE: I have heard back from John (who is no longer working with the Edward's campaign)--and to his credit he has agreed to meet me for coffee let me pick his brain. All the military personnel that I know (even if they are left of center) think we need to win this war in Iraq. I think it will be fascinating to meet and question someone who believes we should pull out. So, not sure when, but more to come...

    OpEd Magic

    For all those OpEd fans out there: Here's one that slams Rudy, Liberals, the Pro-choice movement and the Kos kids while extolling Reagan-- all in 20 small paragraphs...

    A snippet:
    "...The 'Kos' says, "Guiliani's party is both intolerant and unforgiving on the issue of choice." Wow. The issue is not choice. It is life. But to Rudy Giuliani and the lunatics at the DailyKos it is not life at all. It is choice. As if 'choice' means anything, other than life having no meaning.

    One thing it does tend to mean is the consequence of a choice. Liberals do not discuss consequence. They can't. They can only discuss what has already happened and if something has happened then when presented with a similar set of circumstances it will indeed happen again. Damn the facts, bigotry reigns in liberals. Bigotry is after all, the result of making everything of the same 'color' or 'belief' the same thing, whether they are or not, and then blaming that 'thing' for what the 'blamer' cannot stomach as his own fault.

    Ronald Reagan once described liberalism. "A baby is an alimentary canal with a loud voice at one end and no responsibility at the other." Think about it. Any creature that is obsessed with being fed for free, contributes nothing to society but noise, and takes no responsibility for the crap it shoves out can only be an infant, or a juvenile delinquent, or a sociopath or a liberal..." (source)

    ...And we're not even close to the primaries.

    Another great piece is over at Slate. Christopher Hitchens bends Misery-Index-Carter over and gives him a sound licking for his latest gaffe.

    (Photo Credit: Cagle Cartoons)

    Caption It...

    Tuesday, May 22, 2007

    Illegals Part II

    The Immigration Reform/Amnesty Bill looks like it's going to have a tough time in the Senate. Currently "fewer than 20" Senators are pledging support.

    "Opposition comes from the left and the right -- and both sides are vowing to offer amendments to try to move the bill. What is not clear is whether the two sides will be willing to team up to scuttle the bill.

    A Washington Times survey of Senate offices and public comments after the deal was announced Thursday found an additional 32 senators who said they cannot even take a position yet -- a result of the fact that the deal was written in secret by a dozen senators and the Bush administration, wasn't even finalized until yesterday and still hasn't reached many Senate offices. " (source)

    Opposition from the Left:
    Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid this weekend said he will insist that the bill's guest-worker provision be slashed from 400,000 per year down to 100,000 per year.

    Opposition from the Right:
    "Those on the right oppose the instant probationary status and path to citizenship for the estimated 12 million to 20 million illegal aliens in the country. Some have also raised questions about whether the Department of Homeland Security can handle the new security measures and the massive legalization program."

    Republican supporters of the bill are being booed at speaking engagements and being barraged by constituents with requests to scrap the bill.

    McCain says he is "disappointed" in Fred Thompson for opposing the bill. (source)

    GOP Supporters:
    Sen. John McCain (AZ)
    Sen. Lindsey Graham (SC)
    Sen. Arlen Specter (PA)
    Sen. Saxby Chambliss (GA)
    Sen. Mel Martinez (FL)
    Sen. Jon Kyle (AZ)

    GOP Opposition (most vocal):
    Sen. Jeff Sessions of (AL)
    Sen. Charles E. Grassley (IA)

    Why Racial Profiling Won't Work...

    ...and Religious profiling will.

    "...Al-Qaida is aggressively recruiting black Americans for suicide operations against the homeland, say FBI analysts who have reviewed recent videotaped messages from the terror group's leaders.

    Federal and local law enforcement authorities should be aware that al-Qaida terrorists may not appear Arab," warns a recent Homeland Security intelligence report obtained by WND. "Non-Arab al-Qaida operatives could find it easier to avoid unwanted scrutiny since they may not fit typical profiles."

    In the latest message, al-Qaida No. 2 Dr. Ayman al-Zawahiri clearly seeks to sow political and racial discontent among African-Americans. He makes frequent references to what he calls the "martyr" Malcolm X, and says "I want blacks in America to know that we are waging jihad to lift oppression from all mankind."

    Zawahiri encourages African-Americans to follow the example of Malcolm X, a.k.a. al-Hajj Malik al-Shabaaz, who he says was not afraid to sacrifice his life to fight American "oppression." (Read the entire article)

    This is even more disconcerting when considering the story about Islamberg in New York and the new story claiming that Islamberg not the only radical Muslim compound in North America.

    Hillary Proposes $10 Million for Glorified DayCare

    Isn't it enough that school districts pretended the jump to full day Kindergarten was about education and not child care...but now we are supposed to foot the 10 million dollar bill for a "federal program to provide voluntary pre-kindergarten for all 4-year-old children in America."

    "Our educational system needs to be strengthened from start to finish, but we have to start where it all begins," Clinton told an audience." (source)

    I have taught Kindergarten countless times in 7 different "Blue Ribbon" schools, and I can tell you with 100% sincerity that though students are definitely doing more than we did in the 70's --it is still a giant play day. There might be an hour of learning in the curriculum sandwiched between tons of "workstations" (i.e. play centers), recesses and "free play" time. It could easily be accomplished in a half day with time to spare. This means that Kindergarten costs went from $5K per student per year to $11K for more recess.

    And now we are supposed to stomach another $10 million...for what? Other than being a Government funded daycare, Head Start has been a colossal failure and we're already funding that. The money would be better spent on parenting classes for the moms and dads.

    We Are Winning...

    One Iraqi commander told me, "Anyone who says the Americans should leave now is not a real Iraqi citizen."

    Great OpEd from the NY Daily News:

    "...Iraq is the central front in the war against Al Qaeda. And we are beginning to win. These are not talking points. They are facts on the ground, as I saw during my recent trips there.

    Though you may be getting the opposite impression from news reports, the sectarian violence that Abu Musab al-Zarqawi had unleashed by destroying the Samarra Mosque in February 2006 has subsided. Measured weekly, sectarian killings are down by almost two-thirds since the start of the Baghdad security plan. Anbar Province, Al Qaeda's former sanctuary in western Iraq, has turned against the terrorists. Anbaris by the thousands are signing up to fight against Al Qaeda. Violent attacks in the province are down by 50% and combined casualties down by 65% between early January and mid-May.

    The movement is spreading. Sheiks in Diyala, Salah-ad-Din and Babil provinces are reaching out to coalition forces to help us.

    This is not the moment to consider withdrawal time lines that would snatch defeat from the jaws of victory, as the U.S. Congress seems determined to do. It is the time to redouble our efforts..." (Read the entire piece)

    Why is the left so determined for us to lose --determined enough to create fake servicemen that will claim they participated in war crimes?

    "...A man who tried to position himself as a leader of the anti-war movement by claiming to have participated in war crimes while serving in Iraq is facing federal charges of falsifying his record.

    Jesse Adam Macbeth, 23, formerly of Phoenix, garnered attention on blogs and in some alternative media after he began claiming in 2005 to have been awarded a Purple Heart for his service, which he said included slaughtering innocents in a Fallujah mosque. His story was contradicted by his discharge form, showing that he was kicked out of the Army after six weeks at Fort Benning, Ga., in 2003 because of his “entry level performance and conduct.”

    Organizations that opposed the war, including Iraq Veterans Against the War, posted videos or statements containing Macbeth’s claims on their Web sites.

    Macbeth admitted falsifying the documents because he was homeless and wanted to “sucker” anything he could out of the government." (source)

    Caption It...

    Monday, May 21, 2007

    Let's Talk Illegals...

    Okay, as you may have noticed I was trying my damndest not to talk about this new immigration bill. It's like a billion pages that I don't feel like reading and though I have listened to people on both sides of the "It's amnesty"/"It's not amnesty" debate--since I haven't read it for myself...I don't know.

    Obviously McCain gets a little testy if you call it Amnesty. There was one part of the bill (maybe a minor plus) that I was glad to hear was in there. Illegals (upon their return) could only petition to bring their wife and children with them --not every relative in their extended familia tree.

    I don't really "get" the bill. You have to apply for a Visa, pay back taxes and a $5,000 fine --and then after 8 years go back to your country of origin to apply for the green card? <--That's the part I don't get.

    A site "Stiknstein" called breaks down the bill bit by bit in its post Riiiiight, It's Not Amnesty. There have already been "Republicans for Amnesty" sites set up so voters can see who is supporting this bill. Human Events has an OpEd, Sen. Jeff Sessions, claiming that the Immigration Bill is Worse Than You Think. And another article claiming that Bush removed the provisions requiring illegals to pay their back taxes.

    So what are we to think…? Let's check what Fred Thompson had to say:

    “We should scrap this bill and the whole debate until we can convince the American people that we have secured the borders or at least have made great headway.” -Fred Dalton Thompson 5/07

    Sounds like a plan to me. Why make provision for the overwhelming amount of illegals that are already here, when we have hundreds more pouring in each day...

    As I haven't had the willpower to read this bill, I am anxious to hear what all of you have to say about it...

    Kidnapped Soldiers Found...And It's Not Good News.

    "According to a rumor posted on Islamist websites, the American forces have discovered the headless bodies of two of the kidnapped American soldiers. The reports stated that the bodies were found on May 18, after six days of searching, and that the search for the third soldier, whose fate remains unknown, is still continuing. Sources in the Mahmudiyya police force stated that the bodies were found near one of the parks in the city and bear signs of severe torture." (source)

    I really hope and pray that by "severe torture" they mean these soldiers were made to stand in really cold AC with dogs barking at them... But somehow I doubt that's the case.

    "Coalition forces detained 11 people during operations yesterday, including nine suspected of involvement in the May 12 kidnapping of three U.S. soldiers." (source)

    No matter how expected this outcome was...makes it no less devastating. My throat was burning as I read this--thinking of the moms, dads, wives and children left to grieve.

    Gay Rights Pioneers Fed Up With "New" Gays...

    So fed up they are urging police to patrol with weapons, impose curfews and close certain trains stops. These are the same men and women that participated in some of the first gay right's marches in NYC's West Village and participated in the "gay riots" set off by police raids in the 60's...but the rowdy "hip hop generation" of gays and lesbians are more than they can bear:

    "..."They're all out with their radios," Jeffries said, "and they're just hip-hopping all over the street."

    Most of the gay teens and 20-somethings who flirt, kiss, smoke, dance and gossip on the pier, across the street from apartments and brownstones, don't know about the Stonewall riots, Jeffries said. "They're another generation. These are the people who got the rights" because his generation fought for them.

    "There's no willingness to interact," Jeffries said, "or to really treat us with the respect we deserve." (source)

    I was struck while reading this how similar it is to how war Veterans feel. They fought, suffered, sacrificed and were wounded for freedoms that others take for granted and often abuse -without even the slightest respect for what they did... I assume those that were in the heart of the Civil Rights movement must feel similar also.

    Monday's (Serious) Question...

    Here's a chance to "Support the Troops" (well, *one* troop anyway) with no money needed --just your input.

    Army Girl has to write a paper about State-Sponsored Assassination and a solid reasoning behind whichever stance she chooses. She's not sure where she stands and is asking for some arguments and reasoning for and against this drastic tactic.

    This was my email response to her:

    "Of course my first instinct is to say kill them -like if we could have killed Hitler before 6 million Jews, homosexuals and people with tattoos were experimented on and put into gas chambers... But it is a tricky subject because then who fills the power void? Someone worse? Or do we set someone up for that too? And then does it look like we're trying to colonize/control when really we just wanted to avoid a Holocaust/rape rooms/Taliban situation? Do we have a rebel regime waiting in the wings? Or do we kill the leader and allow the country to fight it out and assume they're still better off with the megalomaniac leader gone...?"

    Quest for the Perfect Tee...

    Blonde Sagacity tees may be coming soon. I have been getting some (much needed) help from the awesome Mark of American Method.

    It's SO hard to find a good t-shirt (well, unless you want to pay $90+). One that is actually cut for a woman and not just a man's tee in smaller sizes. One that can handle a top-heavy girl and not be huge around the waist. I have three American Method tees and I love them --which is why I knew he'd be the perfect person to ask about creating one for me.

    Simplicity, softness and flattering cut is key. If I do have them done I don't want to use one of those services that does a digital transfer on a low quality shirt. I want people to look their best in it.

    Anyway, since I asked all of you for opinions/advice as to what a Blonde Sagacity shirt should be, I thought I'd keep you updated on the ongoing pursuit for that perfect tee...and to give American Method a plug because that’s something I like to do when I find a good product.

    Sunday, May 20, 2007

    Movie Warning...

    Last night The Man went to see some band, so I told the boys we could get all kinds of fun junk food and rent some movies. We had seen the TV trailers for Pan's Labyrinth (with looked like a dark Alice in Wonderland) and decided to get that. My "boyfriend" at Blockbuster had one under the counter for me like he does with the new movies. I never even looked at the rating...I thought it was like the Labyrinth with David Bowie or the Dark Crystal --a kid's movie, albeit a dark one.

    Whoops. SO not a kid's movie. And incredibly realistically violent movie with graphic, prolonged (actual) torture and brutality...with a spattering of "fairy tale" thrown in. Not to mention the commercial never hints that the entire film is in Spanish.

    Though all the write ups and teasers deal with the fairy tale aspect of the film, it plays a minor role. The majority of the movie is with the real life plot of a fascist-loyal Captain stepfather and his quest to capture and kill rebels in post Civil War Spain.

    Now I'm not saying that it wasn't a good movie...just one that my 8 and 6 year old probably could have done without seeing.

    No mom of the year award for me...

    Saturday, May 19, 2007

    Who Gave Martial Arts A Bad Name?

    As most of you know, I have been taking Martial Arts classes for over a year now. Actually, I am less than a week away from testing for my Blue Belt...which is what inspired this post.

    Martial Arts training has become an extremely important part of my life...a way of life actually. It's invigorating, empowering and immensely rewarding (especially at this stage of life). Though the tenants of MA are grounded in the personal development of Modesty, Courtesy, Integrity, Self Control, Perseverance, and Indomitable Spirit...Karate seems to have the reputation of a "nerd sport".

    I don't want this to come off as whining --it's just wondering. The Man seems embarrassed and calls me Napoleon or Ralph Macchio. My siblings think I'm a dork. Why? How did mastering a skill that allows a 5'2 girl to successfully extricate themselves from a 250 lb. man become geeky? Who gave the martial arts this terrible stigma?

    Was it the Karate Kid movies? The Man claims that all the losers in high school were the ones that took Karate or Tae Kwon Do so that's the association in his mind. And yes, Napoleon talking about all his nunchuckas skills didn't help...

    Anyway, just thought I'd put the question out there --I wonder how many others have a word-association of "geeky" when it comes to martial arts.

    Don't think I'm implying that this stigma keeps me from talking about my doesn't. I refuse to let some silly perception -or even my family- take away from what I have worked so hard to achieve... Less than 1% of the country has holds a Black belt and that is an accomplishment I attend to achieve and surpass.

    Updated Purity Test

    You Are 56% Pure

    You're not so innocent... in fact, you're quite unpure.
    You have seen and experience a lot. And you're no worse for the wear!

    Friday, May 18, 2007

    Cause-Celeb Mumia Back in Court

    "...I was starting to come to the realization that often my "fellow-travelers" on the far left were not interested in truth or justice or any of the things that are paid lip-service to, but were interested in furthering an ideology. Jamal was a hero of the "radicals." Grossman [Mumia's one-time lawyer] was an old-school Marxist who was simply doing his part for the "cause"... Whether Jamal shot and killed Faulkner or not, really didn’t seem to matter to Grossman, but it did to me." -Tony Allen, Former MOVE member and Mumia Activist, now "Exiled from Philly" (source)

    Mumia is back in the news. A new trial took place yesterday: "At issue was whether Abu-Jamal will be put to death for the shooting death of Philadelphia police officer Daniel Faulkner.

    Abu-Jamal's death sentence was overturned in 2001. Prosecutors are asking the 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals to reinstate it, while Abu-Jamal's attorney is challenging his 1982 conviction.

    Most of Thursday's arguments centered around allegations of racial bias during the murder trial. "At the time of this trial in 1982, the District Attorney's Office of Philadelphia was systematically removing people from the jury who were African-American, not for any other reason but because of the color of their skin," said Abu-Jamal's attorney, Robert Bryan.

    Bryan told the three federal judges his client did not have enough black people on his jury.

    In 1982, a jury of 10 Caucasians and two black people convicted Abu-Jamal of shooting Faulkner to death." (source)

    The quote at the top of the piece is that of a former rabid Mumia activist. He was an idealistic liberal youth who became entangled with MOVE and the Mumia Movement in his early 20's. A few eye-opening events led him to escape MOVE (including Mumia's lawyer saying he was guilty and the murder of an ex-MOVE member) and him and his wife live in hiding somewhere down South. He has two websites dedicated to exposing MOVE and the Mumia-Cause, which he sees as penance for his misguided activism.

    THIS POST from his Anti MOVE/Mumia Blog (on Blogspot) is...well, unskimable (Is that a word?) With all the news stories and posts I read in a day, I have become the queen of the skim and scan read. Not this one. This one I read each and every word. Engrossing. I love an "insider's view" --and especially one of a former upper middle class white kid pulled into an all-Black far-left movement. A MUST read for anyone that has taken interest in the Mumia phenomenon over the past two decades (regardless of whether you think he's a murderer or the (barf) "Voice of the Voiceless".

    If you don't have time for the mini-novel right now, bookmark it and read it later. You won't regret it.