October 2007 Archives

Kettle, met pot.

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Washington Post

The White House plans to try implementing as much new policy as it can by administrative order while stepping up its confrontational rhetoric with Congress after concluding that President Bush cannot do much business with the Democratic leadership, administration officials said.

According to those officials, Bush and his advisers blame Democrats for the holdup of Judge Michael B. Mukasey's nomination to be attorney general, the failure to pass any of the 12 annual spending bills, and what they see as their refusal to involve the White House in any meaningful negotiations over the stalemated children's health-care legislation.

Any meaningful negotiations? When the stance of the White House is to simply refuse to fund health insurance for children on ideological grounds, there is no possibility for meaningful negotiations to occur.

Oh, and isn't it rich that the White House is complaining about being left out of the process now, when for the 5 years of republican control of the House and Senate, the democratic party wasn't even allowed to propose legislation.

Kettle, met pot.

New York Times

KANDAHAR, Afghanistan, Oct. 30 — Several hundred Taliban fighters have moved into a strategic area just outside the southern city of Kandahar in recent days and clashed with Afghan and NATO forces, according to Canadian and Afghan officials.

The fighting, which began Tuesday, is the first time large numbers of Taliban have been able to enter the area just north of the city since 2001. Control of the area, known as the Arghandab district, would allow the Taliban to directly threaten Kandahar, southern Afghanistan’s largest city.

Whether the Taliban were looking to establish permanent control over the area or were simply carrying out raids was unclear on Tuesday night. But Canadian military officials said Afghan and NATO forces had begun a “large operation” to drive out the Taliban.

Why am I reading about this? Didn't we do a good enough job on winning the war in Afghanistan? Seriously, had BushCo™ done their jobs, this would not be happening. I would not need to be reading this article because there would be no need to for it to be written. Yet, here it is, in the New York Times.

Had Jr. not been so hot and lathered to prove Daddy Dearest just how wrong he was about not taking Saddam out during Iraq I, he might have actually completed what was started in Afghanistan. But then, Jr. is not known for finishing what he starts.
Washington Post

Attorney general nominee Michael B. Mukasey told Senate Democrats yesterday that a kind of simulated drowning known as waterboarding is "repugnant to me," but he said he does not know whether the interrogation tactic violates U.S. laws against torture.

Mukasey's uncertainty about the method's legality has raised new questions about the success of his nomination. It seemed a sure thing just two weeks ago, as Democrats joined Republicans in predicting his easy confirmation to succeed the embattled Alberto R. Gonzales.

Okay, what part of cruel and unusual does he not understand? Because if he's having trouble with that simple concept, things like human rights, fair and equal justice, and rule of law might also be out of his range of understanding. My earlier affection for him is starting to wan.

Coming Down the Pike?

I'd like to think this will lead to this. So, I guess I've got some hope.

Immunity Jeopardizes Iraq Probe

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Washington Post

Potential prosecution of Blackwater guards allegedly involved in the shooting deaths of 17 Iraqi civilians last month may have been compromised because the guards received immunity for statements they made to State Department officials investigating the incident, federal law enforcement officials said yesterday.

FBI agents called in to take over the State Department's investigation two weeks after the Sept. 16 shootings cannot use any information gleaned during questioning of the guards by the department's Bureau of Diplomatic Security, which is charged with supervising security contractors.

Some of the Blackwater guards have subsequently refused to be interviewed by the FBI, citing promises of immunity from State, one law enforcement official said. The restrictions on the FBI's use of their initial statements do not preclude prosecution by the Justice Department using other evidence, the official said, but "they make things a lot more complicated and difficult."

Under State Department contractor rules, Diplomatic Security agents are charged with investigating and reporting on all "use of force" incidents. Although there have been previous Blackwater shootings over the past three years -- none of which resulted in prosecutions -- the Sept. 16 incident was by far the most serious. The Bureau of Diplomatic Security was under pressure to quickly determine what had happened in what soon became a major controversy in Baghdad and Washington.

Let's be clear here. This is not an example of how big government is bad. This is an example of how BushCo™ is bad at running government. This is just another in a long line of examples of incompetence and arrogance that has been the hallmark of this administration. And there is no doubt that nothing is going to change this pattern except the removal of the current President/Vice-President by either impeachment or the next election. Until then, we are screwed.

Hell, it just does not pay to argue the specifics of this, or any other issue, because no matter what, this administration, whether by intent, or simply by sheer incompetence, will not be able to accomplish the goals. Our president is incapable of achieving any semblance of leadership. He is, and will always be, the worst president ever.

His only claim to fame will be the winning of two elections. So, he's beaten daddy dearest, and can now rest on his haunches. He's got nothing else to prove.

Oh, and isn't this just the most hilarious statement ever:

State Department spokesman Sean McCormack referred all questions to the Justice Department. "But if anyone has broken the rules or applicable laws, they should be held to account," McCormack said.

Get in line. We're still waiting for someone to be fired over the leaking of Valerie Plame's status as an undercover CIA agent.

Editor's Note: Clarified to eradicate author exuberance.

New York Times

On the eve of an important Senate committee meeting to consider the legislation, Nancy A. Nord, the acting chairwoman of the Consumer Product Safety Commission, has asked lawmakers in two letters not to approve the bulk of legislation that would increase the agency’s authority, double its budget and sharply increase its dwindling staff.

Ms. Nord opposes provisions that would increase the maximum penalties for safety violations and make it easier for the government to make public reports of faulty products, protect industry whistle-blowers and prosecute executives of companies that willfully violate laws.

The measure is an effort to buttress an agency that has been under siege because of a raft of tainted and dangerous products manufactured both domestically and abroad. In the last two months alone, more than 13 million toys have been recalled after tests indicated lead levels that sometimes reached almost 200 times the safety limit.

Ms. Nord’s opposition to important elements of the legislation is consistent with the broadly deregulatory approach of the Bush administration over the last seven years. In a variety of areas, from antitrust to trucking and worker safety, officials appointed by President Bush have sought to reduce the role of regulation and government in the marketplace.
Right. Because being a third world economy is good for business. No need to have to spend the proper time, effort, and expense at using safe, harmless materials.

These people really do not give a damn about the average person. All they care about is pushing an ideology that has already proved itself to be a complete failure. From Katrina, to the Southern California fires, to the lack of response to state level emergencies, this government is all about the little man doing for himself. Oh, but still they take the little man's taxes. Where as the top 1% of the richest see their tax burden decreased.

And I keep waiting for that pro-life stance talked about in two election campaigns to show up in action. But all I see is death. With BushCo™ it's all about bombing, killing, destroying. Show me one solid, concrete example of a constructive, productive action on their part. You know, where the policies they enacted have resulted in a decrease in mortality, the saving of lives. If you do, than balance it against all the premature deaths these past 6 years.

If ever there was a candidate for anti-Christ, Bush sure makes the grade.

The Wiretap This Time

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Studs Terkel points out that our government has had a habit of unconstitutional surveillance on the general populace far longer than just during this administration.
New York Times

WASHINGTON, Oct. 28 —The Federal Communications Commission, hoping to reduce the rising costs of cable television, is preparing to strike down thousands of contracts this week that gave individual cable companies exclusive rights to provide service to an apartment building, the agency’s chairman says.

The new rule could open markets across the country to far-ranging competition. It would also be a huge victory for Verizon Communications and AT&T, which have challenged the cable industry by offering their own video services. The two companies have lobbied aggressively for the provision. They have been supported in their fight by consumer groups, satellite television companies and small rivals to the big cable providers.

Commission officials and consumer groups said the new rule could significantly lower cable prices for millions of subscribers who live in apartment buildings and have had no choice in selecting a company for paid television. Government and private studies show that when a second cable company enters a market, prices can drop as much as 30 percent.

This is cool. Now, if they could just tighten the restrict of media ownership in local markets, I'd be a happy blogger. Oh, and I like the thought of this even more:

Mr. Martin has also pressed the cable companies to offer so-called à la carte plans that would permit subscribers to buy individual channels, or groups of channels, at lower rates than they now pay.
I could just imagine the loss of revenue for the religious groups that rely on bundled cable deals. Nor would I lose any sleep over their loss. I am rather tired of paying for programing I find offensive, oppressive, and intolerant. I guess I am just an intolerant bastard myself. Looks like I am not alone:

But large cable companies, as well as associations representing building owners and tenant groups, said the change would fundamentally alter the economics of cable television in apartments in ways that would be harmful to consumers. They are threatening to challenge the commission in court.

“It is both unlawful and, as a matter of public policy, wholly inappropriate and counterproductive for the commission to bar cable operators from enforcing existing exclusive contracts,” said Daniel L. Brenner, a senior vice president of the National Cable and Telecommunications Association, the cable industry’s main trade association in Washington. “Exclusive contracts and building-by-building competition can, in fact, promote investment, efficiency and competition.”

Intolerant bastards seem to not like the idea of losing power and control. What I don't understand is; whatever happened to the customer is always right? Hell, in this whole scenario, the customer doesn't even get to speak. Besides, having lived in apartment buildings, I can tell you, there is no efficiency. The cable companies in the greater Twin Cities area have hardly made any effort at improving the cable infrastructure.

From Outside The Box

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I couldn't agree more! However, I refuse to say that blogging is better than sex. For one thing, it's not. There really is nothing better than sex, despite the many claims otherwise. Although, hitting one's head on a brick wall does come in a close second.

Oh, okay, it doesn't. I am just being silly. And since it's my blog I can be silly if I damn well want. And I damn well want, even when I don't damn well want. But I am human, which means I damn well want all the time. Something to do with the damn sex drive, I figure.

I'm Hip!

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By way of Norwegianity:

How to Win a Fight With a Conservative is the ultimate survival guide for political arguments

My Liberal Identity:

You are a New Left Hipster, also known as a MoveOn.org liberal, a Netroots activist, or a Daily Show fanatic. You believe that if we really want to defend American values, conservatives must be exposed, mocked, and assailed for every fanatical, puritanical, warmongering, Constitution-shredding ideal for which they stand.

Yup, that's me, hip to the bone.

Friday Stolen Code Blogging

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Time once again for that stalwart Friday edition of Stolen Code Blogging.

Bark Bark Woof Woof

Friday Blogaround
Hallowe'en is just around the corner, so let's see what we can scare up at The Liberal Coalition.

- A Blog Around The Clock: Do you Facebook?
- archy: First came the Scots-Irish?
- Bark Bark Woof Woof: we queers are just like everybody else.
- Bloggg: take this simple test.
- Collective Sigh celebrates Islamofascism Awareness Week.
- Dohiyi Mir finds a way to beat a traffic ticket.
- Echidne Of The Snakes: a veil of tears.
- Iddybud Journal: take your pick; the Quran or the bible.
- Left Is Right: Friday fun!
- Lefty Side of the Dial: Lefty wonders about a friend's violent reaction to gay people.
- Liberty Street: Rudy on torture.
- Make me a Commentator!!! offers GOP candidates' views on the topic of abortion.
- Musing's musings: what is Sen. Obama thinking?
- Pen-Elayne on the Web roots for the other team.
- Rook's Rant: The top ten ways to tell if you're a Christian fundamentalist.
- rubber hose: security in Egypt.
- Scrutiny Hooligans on ENDA.
- SoonerThought on supporting Joe Biden for president.
- Speedkill bids a happy 6,011th birthday to the planet Earth.
- Steve Bates, The Yellow Doggerel Democrat: sing along with Steve.
- T. Rex's Guide to Life reminds you that you have until noon today (Friday, October 26) to vote for the Florida Netroots Awards.
- The Invisible Library: ghosts in the library? No way.
- WTF Is It Now?? Colbertmentum
- ...You Are A Tree with lyrics to Dream of Love.
Today is the 126th anniversary of the gunfight at the O.K. Corral. Just in case you were wondering.
Thank you, and I hope you've enjoyed this edition of FRIDAY STOLEN CODE BLOGGING. I am sorry I won't be here the rest of the week, but try the veil anyway.
CNN

LOS ANGELES, California (AP) -- As wildfires were charging across Southern California, nearly two dozen water-dropping helicopters and two massive cargo planes sat idly by, grounded by government rules and bureaucracy.

How much the aircraft would have helped will never be known, but their inability to provide quick assistance raises troubling questions about California's preparations for a fire season that was widely expected to be among the worst on record.

It took as long as a day for Navy, Marine and California National Guard helicopters to get clearance early this week, in part because state rules require all firefighting choppers to be accompanied by state forestry "fire spotters" who coordinate water or retardant drops. By the time those spotters arrived, the powerful Santa Ana winds stoking the fires had made it too dangerous to fly.

The National Guard's C-130 cargo planes, among the most powerful aerial firefighting weapons, never were slated to help. The reason: They've yet to be outfitted with tanks needed to carry thousands of gallons of fire retardant, though that was promised four years ago.[highlighted by editorial staff-that is-me.]

"The weight of bureaucracy kept these planes from flying, not the heavy winds," Republican U.S. Rep. Dana Rohrabacher told The Associated Press. "When you look at what's happened, it's disgusting, inexcusable foot-dragging that's put tens of thousands of people in danger."
Huh, promised four years ago. Well, I am sure there will be an effort underway soon enough to still make it Clinton's fault.

Digg.com

The actual amount of dead troops numbers around 15,000-17,000, not the 3,500. “If you get shot in combat – Bam! Clock goes off. If you die in transit [to a hospital out of Iraq such as Ramstein in Germany] you are not an official Iraq casualty.” The same holds true if the troops out of the country die 24 hours after they were hit.
Just a reminder that BushCo™ is nothing if not hung up on the "technicalities" of language. So, I'd like the actual number of all the service members who died as a result of injuries sustained in Iraq and Afghanistan, not the "official" number.

Are We Becoming Them?

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Minnesota Monitor has an article up about the reaction to the Giuliani campaign picking Hennepin County Sheriff Rich Stanek for law enforcement outreach in Minnesota. Now, I understand the need to beat the Republican's this upcoming election. But do we need to do it in a manner similar to the Republican's, such as when they hamstrung an administration with old news, screeching like harpies until an investigation resulted in the Monica Lewinsky debacle?

Look, I never approved of the lies President Clinton told over the whole situation. Nor do I think he has honestly admitted to what happened. And there in lays the difference between Clinton and Stanek. Stanek obviously made great efforts to correct what was no doubt an inexperienced and naive officer's verbal mistake.

Stanek then spent a considerable effort to mend the hurt that some said was caused by the remarks in that deposition.

During the 2006 election for Hennepin County Sheriff, Republican candidate Stanek garnered the support of many traditionally DFL voters. Insight News, one of Minneapolis' largest African American newspapers endorsed him. "We believe in redemption," publisher Al McFarlane said. "We believe that people change. We believe that people can grow and we appreciate and we applaud people who are willing to say I was wrong and I stand before you asking for forgiveness. Rich Stanek is a model for white people. He really is."

As a police officer, Stanek met repeatedly with members of the African American community to make amends for the hurtful comments of a decade ago. Al Flowers, a prominent communty activist said, "I believe he was sincere in his apology." And Stanek was backed by African-American Leadership Summit and Black Church Coalition in his campaign.

He also won by a large margin in the largest and most diverse county in Minnesota with 65 percent of the vote.

Also, while Clinton may have been dishonest about a private matter, Stanek has, in fact, been upfront and honest about a professional matter. He has shown integrity and honor. He has been human, made a mistake, and worked at correcting that mistake. He obviously does not deserve the title of racist.

Now, should he start popping oxy's, sending his maid to empty parking lots, and generally making all sorts of ignorant, stupid comments about breeding and what not, then we can hang the title racists on the man. However, I'd say that title's already been taken by someone else.

Oh, and just because Stanek was picked to work for Giuliani's campaign does not mean he was picked by Giuliani himself. In fact, considering all the above facts, I'd lay odds Giuliani was completely out of the loop on this one. Especially when these are the type of people Giuliani personally handpicks.
Associated Press

DERISHKIT, Iraq (AP) — Two Turkish jet fighters streaked across the mountain peaks near this border village Wednesday as part of an expanding military force gathered to pressure Kurdish rebels to abandon their hideouts in northern Iraq.

Residents claimed the planes were on a bombing run to hit a site about four miles inside Iraq, but could offer no details to back up their assertion. If true, however, the airstrike would mark a notable escalation of Turkish tactics against the Kurdish rebels.

The overflight came after three days of artillery shelling from inside Turkey at this area along the Zey-Gowra River, said Jalal Salman, the 45-year-old principal of the local school, and five other villagers.

Turkey's government has warned it will launch an offensive into northern Iraq if Iraqi authorities don't move against bases used by the Kurdish Workers' Party, or PKK, which has waged a more than two-decade fight for autonomy in predominantly Kurdish southeastern Turkey.

It looks like it's going to get worse.


Co-Dependency, They Name Is Love

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The Sentinel Online

A Camp Hill man admitted this morning that he faked a painkiller addiction to protect his wife n a dermatologist accused of writing fake prescriptions.
Sometimes, they really are sicker than the addicts they love.

Now, before anyone gets their underwear all in a bundle, let me first say that co-dependency in addiction is a loosely comparable concept to co-defendants in a criminal trial. So, please don't get hung up on the old stereotypical image of one person being addicted to another. Though it does happen, it's just not that common.

With chemical dependency, even though only one in the relationship maybe actively using, both are affected by the illness.

Iraq Sniper Attacks Quadruple

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Wired.com

Sniper attacks in Iraq "have increased steadily during the past year, with the number of attacks quadrupling," the Pentagon says.  DANGER ROOM pal Catherine Macrae Hockmuth made the catch, after combing through the Defense Department's request for another $42 billion to fund the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq.


These attacks have not only caused numerous casualties, but have had an adverse psychological effect on both Coalition forces and the Iraqi civilian populace.


I know.  Last month, in the Iraqi town of Tarmiyah, I spent time with soldiers who'd been hit with roadside bombs -- and stalked by a professional-grade sniper.  The explosives were treated as a fact of life; no one seemed to give 'em that much thought, even after a convoy was hit.  But the sniper, he was different.  He had killed two soldiers, and wounded seven more.  And, as a result, soldiers in Tarmiyah were spooked to go outside, even for a few minutes.  Just about the first war story anybody told me was about a close encounter with the shooter.

Thankfully, the sniper seems to have gone into hiding. But the Pentagon is warning of "a shift in enemy tactics that increases the number of sniper attacks could potentially inflict even more casualties than IEDs."

So, they simply switched tactics. Or maybe, as the article points out, and I posted about before, it's in response to this.

Top Ten List

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Evil Bible.com

Top Ten Signs You're a Fundamentalist Christian

10 - You vigorously deny the existence of thousands of gods claimed by other religions, but feel outraged when someone denies the existence of yours.
 
9 - You feel insulted and "dehumanized" when scientists say that people evolved from other life forms, but you have no problem with the Biblical claim that we were created from dirt.
 
8 - You laugh at polytheists, but you have no problem believing in a Triune God.
 
7 - Your face turns purple when you hear of the "atrocities" attributed to Allah, but you don't even flinch when hearing about how God/Jehovah slaughtered all the babies of Egypt in "Exodus" and ordered the elimination of entire ethnic groups in "Joshua" including women, children, and trees!
 
6 - You laugh at Hindu beliefs that deify humans, and Greek claims about gods sleeping with women, but you have no problem believing that the Holy Spirit impregnated Mary, who then gave birth to a man-god who got killed, came back to life and then ascended into the sky.
 
5 - You are willing to spend your life looking for little loopholes in the scientifically established age of Earth (few billion years), but you find nothing wrong with believing dates recorded by Bronze Age tribesmen sitting in their tents and guessing that Earth is a few generations old.
 
4 - You believe that the entire population of this planet with the exception of those who share your beliefs -- though excluding those in all rival sects - will spend Eternity in an infinite Hell of Suffering.  And yet consider your religion the most "tolerant" and "loving."

 
3 - While modern science, history, geology, biology, and physics have failed to convince you otherwise, some idiot rolling around on the floor speaking in "tongues" may be all the evidence you need to "prove" Christianity.
 
2 - You define 0.01% as a "high success rate" when it comes to answered prayers.  You consider that to be evidence that prayer works.  And you think that the remaining 99.99% FAILURE was simply the will of God.
 
1 - You actually know a lot less than many atheists and agnostics do about the Bible, Christianity, and church history - but still call yourself a Christian.

Jackson Pollock

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Jackson Pollock.org

Create your own Jackson Pollock painting!
w00kie on Flickr

Taking transparency to a whole new level.

Entering Tin Foil Territory.

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Prison Planet.com

So we chose to 'microwave' our cash, over $1000 in twenties in a stack, not spread out on a carasoul. Do you know what exploded on American money?? The right eye of Andrew Jackson on the new twenty, every bill was uniform in it's burning... Isnt that interesting?

Now we have to take all of our bills to the bank and have them replaced, cause they are now 'burnt'.

We will now be wrapping all of our larger bills in foil on a regular basis.
I don't know if this is legitimate, so it's offered without comment.

Moby.com

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Ladies and Gentlemen, Moby blogs!

At Home Today!

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I've got to get the van in the shop today, the transmission having burned out a while ago. I had it rebuilt, but it needs to be looked at again. I also have to renew my license. So, I am still in Hastings today, having delayed my return to Borderland by a day. Of course, this could be dangerous. The desire to say "hell with the job" and stay with my family is overpowering. I really do miss them that much. Anyway, that's all for now.

Friday Stolen Code Blogging

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Friday Blogaround
Your weekly Liberal Coalition blogaround...fresh and tasty.

- A Blog Around The Clock: this is your brain...
- archy: being brutally honest.
- Bark Bark Woof Woof: laugh, and the world laughs with you.
- Bloggg: a tragic loss.
- Collective Sigh is having staph issues.
- Dohiyi Mir: in which NTodd holds out for the Indians.
- Echidne Of The Snakes: new casting for "It's not a choice..."
- First Draft: there's never a hurricane around when you need one.
- Grateful Dread Radio: come to the Radical Book Fair.
- Iddybud Journal: positive outreach.
- Left Is Right: Friday fun and helpful tips.
- Lefty Side of the Dial: things break.
- Liberty Street: the bully pulpit.
- Make me a Commentator!!! takes a break.
- Musing's musings: the sad state of foreign affairs under the Bush administration.
- Pen-Elayne on the Web: best wishes to Elayne as she recovers from a little accident...and generates a flash of neon.
- Rook's Rant: all politics is local...and loony.
- rubber hose: upyernoz reports from Egypt.
- Scrutiny Hooligans: drinking liberally.
- SoonerThought: So long, Denny Hastert.
- Speedkill: why would Bob Jones endorse Mitt Romney?
- Steve Bates drones on. (Hmm. Perhaps I should rephrase that...?)
- T. Rex's Guide to Life on justice in Florida.
- WTF Is It Now?? - does anyone care what Lynne Cheney thinks?
- ...You Are A Tree remembers another passing.
The Red Sox pulled it out. Now all they need is a bullpen of Josh Becketts...
Yes, MB, I managed to be successful this morning. I too am quite surprised by this fortunate turn of events.

This has been another addition of Friday Stolen Code Blogging. Thank you very much. I am here all week. Try the veil.


New York Times

PARIS, Oct. 18 — For President Nicolas Sarkozy, a day does not get much darker than this.

On Thursday, Mr. Sarkozy, the 52-year-old French leader, was reeling from blows on two different domestic fronts: a wave of strikes that swept through France and an official announcement that his 11-year marriage had come to an end.

Shortly after a presidential spokesman, David Martinon, told a hastily called news conference that he had absolutely no comment about his boss’s marriage, the Élysée Palace dropped the bombshell that Mr. Sarkozy and his wife, Cécilia, “announce their separation by mutual consent.” The palace later clarified that the couple “had divorced.”

Looks as if France has their own version of G.W. in office. A new Miserable Failure in the works?

However, I'll take issue with the New York Times headline; I think the marital crises is over, there already having been a divorce.

Time For A Urinalysis!

Who ever dreamed this up needs to be drug tested on an hourly basis.



Okay, hat tip to Dump Michele Bachmann.
MSNBC

KARACHI, Pakistan - A suicide bombing in a crowd welcoming former Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto killed at least 123 people Thursday night, shattering her celebratory procession through Pakistan’s biggest city after eight years in exile.

Two explosions went off near a truck carrying Bhutto, but police and officials of her party said she was not injured and was hurried to her house. An Associated Press photo showed a dazed-looking Bhutto being helped away.

There were conflicting reports on the number of people killed in the blasts. The Associated Press, citing officials from six hospitals, reported 126 dead and 248 wounded. Reuters, citing witnesses and a police official, reported 123 killed and more than 260 injured. There was no way to immediately reconcile the difference, but these figures make the attack one of the deadliest bomb strikes in Pakistan's history.

I don't know what this portents. It may not be of the same scale as the 9/11 attacks, but it sure seems to be having the same impact on Pakistan. Unless BushCo™ stick their ever miserably incompetent fingers into the aftermath, I think the Islamic militants will find they made a mistake with this attack. Unfortunately, I also believe it will invite more violence into Pakistan's political arena, not less.

Election Central

Senator Chris Dodd plans to put a hold on the Senate FISA renewal bill because it reportedly grants retroactive immunity to telephone companies for any role they played in the Bush administration's warrantless eavesdropping program, Election Central has learned.
Well, obviously this is a little out dated, since it's all over the blogsphere that he did follow through with that plan. And to be honest, I really have nothing more to add, other than it's nice to see a Democratic politician show back bone. I suspect he's getting ready an all or nothing effort in running for president.

This is the stuff I expected from Kerry, back on the 20004 election. Don't get me wrong. I happen to think Kerry would have made a hell of a better President then Bush. It's just that he never put himself out there. He never took any chances. He played it safe. And now he's still a Senator.

So, congratulations to Dodd for putting himself out there, for taking a risk, and doing what he thinks is right, not what's politically safe.

That's just my $0.00 on the subject.

Oh, and here's the memeorandum link.

Now I've Done Gone Done It

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Yup. In an unhealthy fit of exuberance, I acquiesced to taking Andante's place in the Pharyngula mutating genre meme. I seriously need to learn to control my impulsiveness. It gets me into more trouble. I could tell you about this one time, up in Canada, on the west coast, but due to National Security, I've been sworn to secrecy.

Well, actually, it was during a black out, and I don't recall a thing. And how the Russian consulate's daughter came into play... Even she didn't know. I guess it was a shared black out. Or it was an alien abduction. Though, I don't believe I was probed. As to the Russian consulate's daughter, she wouldn't say.

Anyway, I've allowed myself to get tagged into another blogger's meme tag thingy,,,, whatever. So, here are the instructions, as copied and pasted from Bryan's post.

There are a set of questions below that are all of the form, “The best [subgenre] [medium] in [genre] is…”. Copy the questions, and before answering them, you may modify them in a limited way, carrying out no more than two of these operations:

  • You can leave them exactly as is.
  • You can delete any one question.
  • You can mutate either the genre, medium, or subgenre of any one question. For instance, you could change “The best time travel novel in SF/Fantasy is…” to “The best time travel novel in Westerns is…”, or “The best time travel movie in SF/Fantasy is…”, or “The best romance novel in SF/Fantasy is…”.
  • You can add a completely new question of your choice to the end of the list, as long as it is still in the form “The best [subgenre] [medium] in [genre] is…”.
  • You must have at least one question in your set, or you’ve gone extinct, and you must be able to answer it yourself, or you’re not viable.

Then answer your possibly mutant set of questions. Please do include a link back to the blog you got them from, to simplify tracing the ancestry, and include these instructions.

So, here goes:

My great-great-great-great-grandparent is Pharyngula.
My great-great-great-grandparent Metamagician and the Hellfire Club.
My great-great-grandparent is Flying Trilobite.
My great-grandparent is A Blog Around the Clock.
My grandparent is archy.
My parent is Why Now?

The best alien invasion novel in SF/Fantasy is: The Aluminum Man by G. C. Edmondson

The best “bad” movie in SF/Fantasy is: Big Trouble in Little China

The best sexy song in pop is: “Sex” as performed by Berlin.


Now, as to propagating this mutating meme blogger's tag:

  • Let's start with that foul-mouthed quaker over at Dohiyi Mir. Hmmm. Foul-mouthed quaker. That seems to be an oxymoron. Well, I guess it fits, since we are talking about NTodd.
  • Then there's poor, deranged PSoTD, who's YouTube addiction has reached depths of depravity that would make chronic bar flies cringe in disgust.
Then there are these two whom have, in fact, both tagged me in other, unrelated blogger's tag memes. Unfortunately, it was just before the unfortunate upgrade to MT 4 mishap*, resulting in the lose of my posts produced all those many years prior. However, I am undaunted. I hold my head up high, reach out with moral authority, and tag the following two bloggers without guilt or shame:

  • Blue Girl, Red State. Oh, and that's right, no tag backs. Thought I'd forgotten, didn't you?
  • Lab Kat. Because, damn it, I think that cat on her page is cute. However, she's not posted since August, so this might be a Tag In Memorial. But I'd rather hope to see a post.
* Oh, alright. It was not a mishap, it was a dumb-ass, bone-headed, rookie move on my part in failing to back up my posts before upgrading.
Washington Post

A controversial nuclear deal between the United States and India appears close to collapse after the Indian prime minister told President Bush yesterday that "certain difficulties" will prevent India from moving forward on the pact for the foreseeable future.

The main obstacle does not involve the specific terms of the agreement but rather India's internal politics, including fears from leftist parties that India is moving too close to the United States, according to officials and experts familiar with the deal. Besieged over the past two months by growing opposition to nuclear energy cooperation with the United States, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh indicated over the weekend that he would rather save his coalition government than the nuclear pact.

"What we have done with the U.S., it is an honorable deal, it is good for India, and it is good for the world," Singh said Saturday. "But we are in the realm of politics, and within our coalition, there are differing perceptions."

Neither government appeared eager to announce the setback to what had been billed as one of the Bush administration's biggest foreign policy achievements. India's only official pronouncement was tucked at the bottom of a seven-paragraph news release on the Indian Embassy Web site outlining a telephone conversation Monday between Singh and Bush.

Okay, it's all nice and clean, using the term United States when attempting to explain the difficulties in executing this nuclear pact. But the truth is, the growing opposition is unwilling to have anything to do with BushCo™. And, quite frankly, I am rather of a mood to understand that opposition. I am not happy about it, and don't like the idea of nuclear proliferation, but I am of an understanding.

Washington Post

Verizon Communications, the nation's second-largest telecom company, told congressional investigators that it has provided customers' telephone records to federal authorities in emergency cases without court orders hundreds of times since 2005.

The company said it does not determine the requests' legality or necessity because to do so would slow efforts to save lives in criminal investigations.

In an Oct. 12 letter replying to Democratic lawmakers, Verizon offered a rare glimpse into the way telecommunications companies cooperate with government requests for information on U.S. citizens.

Verizon also disclosed that the FBI, using administrative subpoenas, sought information identifying not just a person making a call, but all the people that customer called, as well as the people those people called. Verizon does not keep data on this "two-generation community of interest" for customers, but the request highlights the broad reach of the government's quest for data.

So, we find out that more and more of the telecom corporations have collaborated with BushCo™ and ignored our constitutional rights. You know, I seem to remember a section of the constitution addressing the existence of corporations. Somehow, their ability to ignore our constitutional rights is not a part of that section.

But, I doubt the drunken members of congress are going to do anything about this situation, they being overly intoxicated with the money tossed liberally by corporations.

Oh, and this:

Verizon and AT&T said it was not their role to second-guess the legitimacy of emergency government requests.

Is fucking bullshit. What they hell do you pay all those lawyers for if not to make sure you are not breaking any laws?

Ah, ya, that's right. It's to keep from having to actually suffer any consequences as a result of breaking laws. My bad.

New York Times

MOSCOW, Oct. 14 — At the gathering of leaders of the Group of 8 industrialized nations in Germany this year, President Bush turned to President Vladimir V. Putin of Russia and remarked that the two of them had outlasted most of their old colleagues from the group’s annual meetings, American officials recalled. Jacques Chirac, Silvio Berlusconi, Gerhard Schröder and Tony Blair had left or were leaving.

“Next year,” Mr. Putin replied, “it will be only you.”

Mr. Putin’s response, for a time, persuaded the Bush administration that he would keep his word and step down as Russia’s president when his term ends next year, several months before Mr. Bush’s own presidency ends in January 2009.

Now, though, Mr. Putin’s plans are far from clear, and as a result, the administration’s hopes that Russia would move toward a freer, more democratic society have substantially diminished.

Mr. Putin’s surprise suggestion last month that he might yet remain in power — possibly as a newly empowered prime minister, possibly as the eminence atop the “party of power” — has left the White House stumped. The administration is uncertain how to deal with a man who has consolidated power almost exclusively in his own hands, even as Mr. Bush continues to call Mr. Putin “my friend.”

First of all, let's set the record straight. The White House is not stumped because Mr. Putin consolidated his power. It's that Mr. Putin consolidated his power in a way that Bush could not. They are jealous.

Oh, and this is priceless:

Such comments reflect another reality: the powerlessness of the United States when it comes to prodding Russia in a more democratic direction, barely six years after Mr. Putin’s willingness to reach out to Mr. Bush after the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, seemed to herald a new era of cooperation.
See, telling someone what to do, while doing the opposite yourself, is a recipe for failure.

The parody is too much.
New York Times

With only 15 months left in office, President Bush has left whole agencies of the executive branch to be run largely by acting or interim appointees — jobs that would normally be filled by people whose nominations would have been reviewed and confirmed by the Senate. In many cases, there is no obvious sign of movement at the White House to find permanent nominees, suggesting that many important jobs will not be filled by Senate-confirmed officials for the remainder of the Bush administration. That would effectively circumvent the Senate’s right to review and approve the appointments. It also means that the jobs are filled by people who do not have the clout to make decisions that comes with a permanent appointment endorsed by the Senate, scholars say.
Of course Interim Heads are being used. President Bush couldn't get a single person he'd really like to appoint through congress. For now, he is letting things hang, without any regard for it's impact on the country. He's simply living in his own reality, actively pursuing a mindset of denial, ignoring the truths about the shape of the country, the shape of the world, and responsibility for his hand in creating the mess.

Bush has given up on trying to be the leader of a democratic republic. In fact, he has all together given up on leading.

Thus concludes the reign of the Miserable Failure. All that is left is the rotten corpse.

Friday Stolen Code Blogging

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Once again it's time to steal code from Mustang Bobby over at Bark Bark Woof Woof.

Friday Blogaround
While the right wing is off beating up on a 12-year-old kid, let's see what the Liberal Coalition is writing about this week.

- A Blog Around The Clock: A Japanese "Tradition."
- archy: fill John in on what he's missed.
- Bark Bark Woof Woof: why Michelle Malkin won't debate Ezra Klein.
- Bloggg: Oh, the bureacracy.
- Collective Sigh: knows how the Frosts feel.
- Dohiyi Mir: a lesson on Lessing.
- Echidne Of The Snakes: the elephant in the living room.
- First Draft: please help these people.
- Grateful Dread Radio: National Coming-Out Day...it's not too late.
- Left Is Right has an amazing story about Mario Capecchi, the winner of the 2007 Nobel Prize for medicine.
- Lefty Side of the Dial on why he likes The Big Bang Theory, and other stuff.
- Liberty Street with more on the Swiftboating of Graeme Frost.
- Make me a Commentator!!! on that other wingnut who got upstaged by a 12-year-old kid.
- Musing's musings: Michael rejoices in his new computer and saved memory.
- Pen-Elayne on the Web notes the end of the baseball season -- for her -- and points to an ite-say ith-way the ible-bay in ig-pay atin-lay.
- Rook's Rant on the wingnuts being so desperate for dirt that they're reading the National Enquirer.
- rubber hose: upyernoz heads for Egypt...but not without a final thought on the Frosts.
- Scrutiny Hooligans on the perils of travel.
- SoonerThought: Joe Biden!
- Speedkill: lapel pins prevent terrorist attacks.
- The Yellow Doggerel Democrat: a new version of Chicken Run.
- T. Rex's Guide to Life: The Florida primary will actually have some candidates in it, compared to some places.
- The Invisible Library: ever read any Proust? Why not?
- WTF Is It Now?? -- If you've done nothing wrong, why do you need a lawyer?
Go Red Sox.
I was torn over inclusion of the final sentence. But, if I am going to steal, I best take all that I can. God only knows when the economy is going to turn a corner for us lower class traitors.
New York Times

OSLO, Norway (AP) -- Former Vice President Al Gore and the U.N.'s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change won the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize Friday for their efforts to spread awareness of man-made climate change and lay the foundations for counteracting it.

''I am deeply honored to receive the Nobel Peace Prize,'' Gore said. ''We face a true planetary emergency. The climate crisis is not a political issue, it is a moral and spiritual challenge to all of humanity.''

Congratulations Al!

Now, wouldn't it be just too cool to have a Nobel Peace Prize winner run for president? You couldn't get an farther away from the idiot in office now, and it would go a long way towards restoring some faith in the United States internationally.

Oh, and cue the screeching harpies over on the right.

New York Times

ISTANBUL, Oct. 11 — Turkey reacted angrily Thursday to a House committee vote in Washington to condemn as genocide the mass killings of Armenians in Turkey that began during World War I, recalling its ambassador from Washington and threatening to withdraw its support for the Iraq war.

In uncharacteristically strong language, President Abdullah Gul criticized the vote by the House Foreign Relations Committee in a statement to the semi-official Anatolian News Agency, and warned that the decision could work against the United States.
I am not a foreign policy wonk. Hell, I am not a wonk of any type. But, it seems to me, that if you wanted to ham string BushCo™'s march towards war with Iran, what better way then to piss off an ally. Turkey being close to Iran and all, it seems that we'd be needing their air space and bases for any bombing of Iran, though I could be wrong.

Also, if someone wanted to work towards making it more difficult to stay in Iraq, this seems to be a rather novel, and indirect, manner in forcing the withdrawal of our troops from Iraq.

Speaker Nancy Pelosi said the House would definitely take up the measure. “I said if it comes out of committee, it will go to the floor,” she told reporters. “Now it has come out of committee, and it will go to the floor.”
I'm just saying.

Of course, the down side to all this; it becomes more grist for accusing Democrats of not supporting our service members.

New York Times

Mr. Gates and other military officials have said that 70 percent of the military cargo sent to Iraq is flown through Incirlik or on routes over Turkey.

To drive home the potential impact of the House action, American officials have warned that delivery of new heavily armored trucks, known as Mine Resistant Ambush Protected vehicles, could be disrupted. Senior military officials said Thursday that the roughly 400 such vehicles delivered since July have been flown in over Turkey but not landed on its territory. Those flights could avoid Turkish airspace, if necessary, they said.
So, I am not so sure as to the intelligence of this move. In terms of forcing hard choices about the continued presence of our troops in Iraq, and of any military action against Iran, it seems to be questionable. But, in life there has to be some risks. Yet politically, this could spell disaster for the Democrats in the House. Still, I am of a mind to sit back and wait. Honestly, this can't be anymore damaging than, say, lying us into illegally invading and occupying a sovereign nation.
The All Spin Zone has a nugget of a post up suggesting a whisper campaign has been started against John Edwards. Now, the wing nuts basically make shit up all the time. So, on any given day, some asshole located in their parent's basement will make some claim, then demand proof it's not true.

However, should this particular "meme" develop legs, then no doubt, it's a campaign. So, let's sit tight, and just wait and see if these idiots start screeching uncontrollably.

Oh, wait, They screech uncontrollably on a daily basis. My bad.

Anyway, I think Richard is working towards the right point. But it's not so much about who's afraid of John Edwards as much as why are they afraid of John Edwards. Just like Howard Dean seemed to worry the Republicans (especially Rove) back in 2004 (as we now see why with the 2006 election) there seems to be a serious strain among the Mighty Wurlitzer mouth pieces to blow bad steam about John Edwards.

I can't help but suspect the Republican planners are well aware of their party's decline. More importantly, I think they know they are no longer a representative cross section of the American electorate. With more and more populous ideas taking root, without the stigma of "dirty fucking hippies," they are desperate, and will go to any length in stirring up controversies to distract people from this truth.

Somehow, thought, I think this whole John Edwards whisper campaign is going to blow up in their face. For one thing, I find Elizabeth Edwards to be much more scrappy, and feisty, then Hillary ever was back during the Blue Dress affair, and she will not take any of this in a cool, calculating manner. She's going to lash out, with anger, with passion, and without regard to the sensibilities of the Beltway bums. Now, the Beltway bums may go all a twitter, condemning and criticizing her, but the majority of Americans will look up to her, and see what a strong woman she is, and how she is standing by her man.

And let's hope they wing nuts failed to learn from the past. Because when they were going all out to smear and besmirch a sitting president, his approval ratings went through the roof. So, I figure, if they try to do the same thing, the results will be the same.

Coffee Withdrawal

I made the mistake of not drinking any coffee today. So, at the moment, I've got a headache. Now, don't get your undies in a bundle, I've gone and bought myself a cup this evening. I'm not stupid.

I hate having caffeine headaches. If I hadn't let myself get distracted today, I'd have made myself a French press this morning. Damn good way to brew a cup of coffee, if you don't mind my saying so. Strong, bold, and full of fiber.

Nothing starts the day out better then a strong cup of coffee. Especially when it gives you movement.

Best Written Email Scam Yet!

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Private Mail From: Ahmed Khaleed

Greetings.

As you read this, don't feel sorry for me, because it is the destiny of
everyman to die someday. I am Ahmed Khaleed a naturalized Briton by birth and
a business merchant based in the United Kingdom. I have been diagnosed with
Esophageal cancer.

It has defiled all forms of medical treatment, and right now I have only about
a few months to live, according to medical experts. I regret that I have not
particularly lived my life so well, as I never really cared for anyone (not
even myself), but my trade.

Though I am very well to do, I was never open handed; I was always hostile to
people and regarded them like they never had hopes of becoming as successful
as myself. Now I know that there is a lot more to life than just prosperity.

I believe that when I am given a second chance to come to this world, I would
live my life a different way from how I have lived it. Now that death is
eminent, I have willed and given most of my belonging to immediate and
extended family members, as well as a few close friends.

I want Allah to be merciful to me and accept my soul. Hence I have decided to
support charity work; this is what i want to be remembered for. So far, I have
been able to reach out to a few charity organizations in the Singapore,
Algeria and Malaysia. Now that my health has deteriorated so badly, I cannot
do this myself anymore.

I once asked members of my family to aid me in giving of alms to those
organizations catering for the less privileged in Bulgaria and Pakistan; they
refused and kept the resources to themselves. Hence, I do not trust them
anymore, as they seem not to be contempt with what I have left for them.

The last of my belonging which no one knows of, is the huge deposit of
Eighteen million US dollars that I have in a safe keeping company abroad,
which I will want you to secure and bestow to charity organizations.

Please endeavour to reply me via E-mail: [email removed for obvious reasons] for your time
and devotion, I have set aside a tenth of this for you.


God be with you.

Ahmed Khaleed
[again, email removed for obvious reasons]
Seriously, it's the first Nigeria style scam I've received that was ass half written well. Hell, there's only one misspelling and that's the small i instead of capital I. As to sentence structure, all that; it's as if it's written by a poet. Damn, this is good. It's only downfall: A naturalized Briton by birth? Yup, now that's an oxymoron.
Reuters

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Former U.S. President Jimmy Carter on Wednesday denounced Vice President Dick Cheney as a "disaster" for the country and a "militant" who has had an excessive influence in setting foreign policy.

Cheney has been on the wrong side of the debate on many issues, including an internal White House discussion over Syria in which the vice president is thought to be pushing a tough approach, Carter said.

"He's a militant who avoided any service of his own in the military and he has been most forceful in the last 10 years or more in fulfilling some of his more ancient commitments that the United States has a right to inject its power through military means in other parts of the world," Carter told the BBC World News America in an interview to air later on Wednesday.

"You know he's been a disaster for our country," Carter said. "I think he's been overly persuasive on President George Bush and quite often he's prevailed."

Carter is showing some serious balls. He goes after Bush on torture, and he goes after Cheney on warmongering. Unbelievable. Where the hell is the rest of the Democratic Party? Any of them lining up to back those statements? Or are we going to see a weak, muted response, leaving President Carter to take the barrage of criticism all on his own? Not that Carter can't take it. Like I said in the previous post, the man still goes out and builds houses for other people.

I don't even want to see Bush swing a hammer. Mostly because I don't want to get hurt. The man would be a menace. I pity the Secret Service officers who would have to guard him during any photo op involving a hammer.

Do you think they get hazard pay for those situations?
CNN

"I don't think it. I know it," Carter told CNN's Wolf Blitzer.

"Our country for the first time in my life time has abandoned the basic principle of human rights," Carter said. "We've said that the Geneva Conventions do not apply to those people in Abu Ghraib prison and Guantanamo, and we've said we can torture prisoners and deprive them of an accusation of a crime to which they are accused."

Carter also said President Bush creates his own definition of human rights.

Carter's comments come on the heels of an October 4 article in The New York Times disclosing the existence of secret Justice Department memorandums supporting the use of "harsh interrogation techniques." These include "head-slapping, simulated drowning and frigid temperatures," according to the Times.

Oh boy! The wing nut banshees are going to be out in full force on this one. Cries of "treason," "traitor," and all other sorts of mind numbing shrillness will commence forth with. I think they should be careful, though, because Carter seems to be a pretty spry old man. He's not some youngster of 12, you know. He's still out there building houses. Which seems a lot more constructive than mindlessly clearing away more brush.

Outrage Fatigue, Part Duex

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Jesus Christ. I start reading the headlines, reading the blogs, reading just about everything on the Internet, and all I get is disgusted. Seriously, with all the greed, corruption, murder, carnage, and rampant chaos, it's no wonder people believe the world is going to end. Hell, with all this insanity, I can't help but wonder if the human race needs to go extinct.

We claim to be better than animals, yet kill each other off more than animals. We destroy our own habitat while claiming it to be natural. In the name of life, we create laws that result in death. In the name of life, a dead woman is kept from her God while, after a natural disaster, thousands who could have been saved were allowed to die.

In the name of life, a program that benefits the health of children is vetoed, and the 12 year old who spoke of it's benefit is smeared.

I really won't question the end of the human race.


Okay, This Is Just Rambling

God, I have no idea what I am going to write about. I am just hitting away at the keyboard just to take my mind off of the awful loneliness I feel today. I miss my family. It's tearing me apart, having to be away from them 5 days out of the week. And since it's a 6 hour drive one way just to be with them, I really only get one day a week with them.

Of course, then there is the fact The GirlFriend™ works 5 to midnight on Friday, and then Saturday midnight to 7 AM Sunday. So, I end up doing my laundry, and getting the shopping done for my family for the week that one day while she sleeps. And with her wage being below working poverty levels, and mine just not enough, even combined with hers, to make the mortgage, pay the bills, pay for the gas for me to make it back on the weekend, and to pay for a place up here, we are going to lose the house.

I've been looking for another job, back down in the Twin Cities. I've put in a lot of applications online, which is pretty much the way of job search now-a-days. But not one call. And I mean not one. It's getting extremely discouraging.

The thought is to just say the hell with the house, pack The GirlFriend™ and The Fuskers™ off up to this neck of the woods, and settle in for the duration. But The GirlFriend™ is having a hard time coming to grips with that possibility. She dreads going back to renting, which I am not particularly fond of resuming. Yet, it's more than likely the end result.

The other major obstacle coming down the road is the next adjustment of our ARM. Yes, that's right. I am one of those idiots that let themselves get suckered into an adjustable rate mortgage. I didn't figure the mortgage company would raise the rate one percentage point each year. I, incorrectly it turns out, thought they'd be reasonable and stretch out the upward adjustments out over a longer period of time. Instead, they've raised the interest rate one percent each year since we first bought the house.

We've gone from 4% up to 7% this past three years, with, no doubt, another 1 percent increase next year. Needless to say, our monthly payment has damn near doubled. And we've no more equity in our home today then we did 3 years ago. At least, not enough to help us get a refinance loan.

Anyway, as it stands right now, I am really pissed. At myself for having been naive enough to believe an ARM was a wise decision, and at the housing industry for allowing itself to get to such a disgustingly unbalanced and calamitous state.

So, there you have it. I am angry, lonely, stressed, and plain feeling completely, utterly helpless. Ya, that's it. Fine.

Fucked up, Insecure, Neurotic, and Emotional.

Situation normal.

A Lost Soul

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Somewhere in the Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous, it says there are those who must die, so others can live. PSoTD may very well be such a case. Pray for his soul.

If It Wasn't For Bad Luck......

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I just had my van repaired, having burned out the transmission, and I hit a deer on the way back up north. No damage to the engine, but I did bang up the hood, and lost the passenger side headlight.

Right now, life sucks.

Friday Stolen Code Blogging

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It's Friday, and that means it's time to steal, direct from Bark Bark Woof Woof, the Liberal Coalition Blog-a-round.

Larry Craig stays... Rush digs in deeper... Fred Thompson thinks the Soviet Union is still around... What else is new according to the Liberal Coalition?
- A Blog Around The Clock collects nerdy license plates.
- archy tries to attract College Republicans to his site.
- Bark Bark Woof Woof: what's so funny?
- Bloggg: stop and smell the roses.
- Collective Sigh: a leg up.
- Dohiyi Mir on the perils of traveling.
- Echidne Of The Snakes: should men vote?
- First Draft: another toe tapper.
- Grateful Dread Radio: an Iranian speaks out on the state of gays in Iran.
- Iddybud Journal: a rally for peace in Syracuse.
- Left Is Right: Friday fun.
- Lefty Side of the Dial: cleaning out the cobwebs.
- Liberty Street: pinning down symbolism.
- Make me a Commentator!!! on branding the Republican brand.
- Musing's musings: Michael's had a bad week.
- Pen-Elayne on the Web and the new iMac for Robin.
- Rook's Rant: quick hits.
- rubber hose: the message of Blackwater.
- Scrutiny Hooligans with primary thoughts.
- SoonerThought: Biden's education plan.
- Speedkill toys with the idea of Alabama's law against dildos.
- Steve Bates updates us on the situation in Burma.
- T. Rex's Guide to Life: Florida Netroots continue to spread.
- The Invisible Library: Did you know this was Banned Book Week?
- WTF Is It Now?? No approval.
- ...You Are A Tree: So long, little friend.
God! I love MT 4. It copies and pastes not just the text and formatting (up to and including bullets and lists! Though tables not so well), but the links as well. Stealing has never been easier. Thanks MB!

Oh, Christ! Just when you thought it was safe to be a Republican again.

Colbert Vs Krugman

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Oh, it's on.

At long last, our national nightmare is over.

Quick Hits

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This is in spite of President Bush, not because of President Bush.

This makes President Bush a liar. Pro life my ass.

This makes President Bush a liar. Pro life my ass.

This shows the United States hasn't sunk to the worse possible depths of depravity.

The Law Of Unintended Consequences

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I had forgotten about his post, which I had written three days ago. Anyway, here's a comment I left at Bark Bark Woof Woof in regards to this post.

Call it another addition of unintended consequences. Having made such an uproar over the MoveOn.org add, it now creates an expectation of civility and decorum that they themselves have never lived up to all these years.

Now they are in a position of having to achieve an expectation they are incapable of achieving.
And that's why I really didn't mind the MoveOn.org ad. It turned into a trap for the VRWC's model of the Mighty Wurlitzer. Hypocrisy will always bite you in the ass.
Minnesota Monitor

Members of Minnesota's Congressional delegation sent a strongly worded letter Monday to Gov. Tim Pawlenty urging his administration to apply for emergency funds for the 35W bridge collapse -- funds that could quickly disappear.

Reps. Jim Oberstar, Collin Peterson, Betty McCollum, Tim Walz, and Keith Ellison criticized the Pawlenty administration's slow response in applying for several streams of funding for disaster relief, reimbursements for the Metropolitan Council, and the rebuilding of the bridge.

It would seem sitting on your ass is a standard Republican characteristic, no matter what level of government they are leading.



Yahoo News

The aircraft observed about 25 al-Qaida insurgents carrying AK-47 assault rifles — one brandishing a rocket-propelled grenade — walking into a palm grove, the military said.
So, I take it al-Qaida members now wear uniforms. Because, if they are not, how the hell does an aircraft manage to identify people in civilian clothing as al-Qaida insurgents? Or, is it just getting to the point where they have guns, they are al-Qaida insurgents?

You know, I don't even want to know.

Look, I am not saying they killed innocent people. Far from it. I am just not too keen on naming people al-Qaida insurgents simply because they firing at American troops. If someone fires at our troops, they deserve a response. Shooting back, and killing them, is more then adequate. But labeling them al-Qaida insurgents without any true proof is a propaganda ploy, not appropriate for military press conferences.

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