June 2008 Archives

ActBlue -- Red to Blue MN

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Act to Blue MN has less than $100 to go to reach it's goal of $2000. I have to have some readers willing to give as little as $5. Today is the last day of this quarter. Help us to put Minnesota Democrats into congress. Give to Al Franken, Ashwin Madia, Elwyn Tinklenberg, Steve Sarvi.

Blogger's Chess: My 19th Move

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Damn, I completely forgot about my latest move in the Blogger's Chess match against Jim Yeager of Mockingbird's Medley. Anyway, it's the a8 Rook to c8.

MRBlack 19.gif

It's not the best move ever, but my choices are slim and my position weak. So, have at it Jim.

ActBlue -- Red to Blue MN

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Red to Blue MN has just a bit more to go to hit the $2000 goal by Monday. I am asking what few readers I have to go and think about $10, $20, or more, to the worthy Democrats this ActBlue site supports. They all would be fine addictions to congress, and would keep their focus on the people they represent, not the corporations that bribe them with large donation.

Friday Stolen Code Blogging

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Thankfully, Mustang Bobby does all the hard work so I don't have too!

Bark Bark Woof Woof

Friday Blogaround
It's been a very interesting week out there. Let's see how the LC saw it.

- A Blog Around The Clock: the diseases of poverty.
- archy has an excellent essay on the conservative mindset.
- Bark Bark Woof Woof: poll politics.
- Bloggg: that seals it.
- Dohiyi Mir: back in the straddle again.
- Echidne Of The Snakes: back to the future in abortion.
- Florida Progressive Coalition Blog: a perfect candidate?
- Left Is Right: interesting poll results.
- Lefty Side of the Dial: playing ketchup
- Musing's musings: Michael is off on vacation: happy trails!
- Pen-Elayne on the Web: getting settled at the new job and learning to love commuting again.
- Rook's Rant: Michele Bachman's pet peeves.
- rubber hose: intolerance.
- Scrutiny Hooligans: McCain meets Billy Graham.
- SoonerThought: when Chris Hanson goes too far.
- Speedkill: how dense is James Dobson?
- Steve Bates, The Yellow Doggerel Democrat: McCain vs. the computer.
- Stupid Enough Unexplanation: welcome to the neighborhood.
- The Invisible Library: career advice.
- WTF Is It Now?? campaign porn.
- ...You Are A Tree: community building.
An interesting week for me, too. Let's say I dodged a bullet, and I look forward to a busy summer.
Now, though, I do have to do some hard work.

ActBlue -- Red to Blue MN

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Red To Blue MN

Every single Republican in Minnesota's congressional delegation is up for reelection this cycle and each seat is a prime pick-up opportunity for the DFL. With a lot of hard work, we can send a delegation to Washington in 2009 that is 100% committed to bringing Minnesotans the change they deserve.
Help us to clean the House and Senate of corruption, greed and incompetence. The four candidates are: Al Franken, Ashwin Madia, Steve Sarvi, Elwyn Tinklenberg.

Update: Look's like the target amount was reached quite quickly and so it's been doubled. Hence the move back to the top.

The Quick Note

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Yes, I know I have a move in the Blogger's Chess Match with Mr. Yeager. Unfortunately, I have had a bad flair up of my prostate, or whatever is wrong with me, and am doing 10 hour days. Tomorrow. I hope to move tomorrow.
Congratulations to Al for getting endorsed by the Progressive Patriots Fund.

Bark Bark Woof Woof

Referring to the book of Leviticus, those practices include stoning people for planting different crops next to each other. Mr. Dobson says those laws have been made irrelevant by the New Testament, yet oddly enough, the imprecations against homosexuality in the same book in the Old Testament are left intact and are used as weapons by people like James Dobson to demonize an entire class of citizens and deny them their Constitutional rights of equal justice under the law. And he has the chutzpah to accuse Barack Obama of having a "fruitcake interpretation of the Constitution." Hey, he's the one who said "fruitcake."
How rich. Today seems to be all about pointing out the projection going on over at the extreme right. First Dowd eviscerates Rove, now Mustang Bobby smacks around Dobson.

Maureen Dowd: More Phony Myths

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Maureen Dowd can be a real misogynist at times. But damn! when she's on, she is on

New York Times

The cheap populism is really rich coming from Karl Rove. When was the last time he kicked back with a corncob pipe to watch professional wrestling?

Rove is trying to spin his myths, as he used to do with such devastating effect, but it won't work this time. The absurd spectacle of rich white conservatives trying to paint Obama as a watercress sandwich with the crust cut off seems ugly and fake.

Obama can be aloof and dismissive at times, and he's certainly self-regarding, carrying the aura of the Ivy faculty club. But isn't that better than the aura of the country clubs that tried to keep out blacks? It's ironic, and maybe inevitable, that the first African-American nominee comes across as a prince of privilege. He is, as Leon Wieseltier of The New Republic wrote, not the seed but the flower of the civil rights movement.

Unlike W., Obama doesn't have a chip on his shoulder and he doesn't make a lot of snarky remarks. He tries to stay on a positive keel and see things from the other person's point of view.

He's not Richie Rich, saved time and again by Daddy's influence and Daddy's friends, the one who got waved into Yale and Harvard and cushy business deals, who drank too much and snickered at the intellectuals and gave them snide nicknames.

This is probably propogating a sexual stereotype, but damn, she sure did castrate Rove. Well, she would have, if he actually had any balls to begin with.

New York Times

In the first civilian judicial review of the government's evidence for holding any of the Guantánamo Bay detainees, a federal appeals court has ordered that one of them be released or given a new military hearing.

The ruling, made known Monday in a notice from the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, overturned a Pentagon tribunal's decision in the case of one of 17 Guantánamo detainees who are ethnic Uighurs, a Muslim minority from western China.

The imprisonment of the 17 Uighurs (pronounced WEE-goors) has drawn wide attention because of their claim that although they were in Afghanistan when the United States invaded in 2001, they were never enemies of this country and were mistakenly swept into Guantánamo.

No, it can't be possible. Our government make a mistake?! Not the government commanded by George "No regrets" W. Bush. Oh please oh please tell me it ain't so! I mean, these prisoners sound dangerous, what with peddling their fruits of mass destruction.

The one-paragraph notice from the appeals court said a three-judge panel had found in favor of Huzaifa Parhat, a former fruit peddler who made his way from western China to a Uighur camp in Afghanistan.

I am so disheartened. Poor president Bush. He will never be able to achieve world peace at this rate.

The Minnesota Independent

The Humane Society, the largest animal welfare organization in the world, slammed Rep. Michele Bachmann for her vote last week against a bill outlawing the sale of apes, monkeys and other non-human primates in the exotic pet trade. The group took Bachmann to task for the primate vote as well as votes to allow trophy hunting of endangered polar bears and to allow the slaughter of wild horses for human consumption.  The Captive Primate Safety Act, H.R. 2964, prohibits the sale of apes, monkeys and other primates as pets.
What's the big fuss? It's obvious she is simply looking to keep her career options open after politics. I am sure she will make a nice household primate pet to some deserving family. Are baboons good household pets?
White Bishop to g2 is a pain in my ass.

MRWhite 19.gif

I am faced with a very difficult position. He has lined up that White Bishop of his right at my Knight and my Rook. He moves that e pawn up and he's got himself a three way attack; my Knight, my Rook, and my Black Bishop. Completely not cool. I am now trying to decide between the lesser of three, or four, evils for my next move.

What really sucks is that I did not see that move. Curse you, Jim. Curse you!

Well, it is going to take me quite some time to figure out my next move.

Otherwise A Slow News Day

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Other than the death of George Carlin, it appears to be a slow news day. Indeed, since the end of the Democratic primary drama, it's been a slow time for national news all the way around. And I need to amend a statement, even George Carlin's death in not necessarily "news."

Death is not a news story. It is simply a part of life. I am not all that inclined to consider the passing of people as some horrible, terrible incident. I am willing to admit to the pain and grief I experience when someone I love has passed away. But again, it is simply a part of life. I was going to say part of the human condition, but having seen a raccoon mourn the loss of their mate, it's far from just a human condition.

Anyway, I was just noting that on the grand scale of life, we are in a slow news cycle, where the trivial and the mundane are being elevated to heights far exceeding their worth.
New York Times

George Carlin, the Grammy-Award winning standup comedian and actor who was hailed for his irreverent social commentary, poignant observations of the absurdities of everyday life and language, and groundbreaking routines like "Seven Words You Can Never Say on Television," died in Santa Monica, Calif., on Sunday, according to his publicist, Jeff Abraham. He was 71.
There is so much I want to say, and so little words with which to say them. George Carlin was more than simply a comedian for me. His struggle to overcome addiction, and his caustic and blunt humor was a balm during my time of trial and tribulation. The bastard could have stuck around a few more years. We truly lost a great one today.

Digby Braves Teh Stupid

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And OH. MY. GOD! it burns.

What is even more embarrassing, this incredibly stupid woman comes from Minnesota.

Politically Connected

"Some suggestions are that perhaps we would see an enhancement of wildlife expansion because of the warmth of the pipeline," she said during her Wednesday appearance on WCCO-Radio's "Jack Rice Show."

Bachmann noted a caribou population increase, from 2,700 to 30,000, since the Trans Alaska Pipeline System from Prudhoe Bay was built in 1977.

The pipeline has now become a meeting ground and "coffee klatch" for the caribou, she said.

Coffee klatch? Meeting ground? Christ on horseback, she is a fucking dumb-ass. She makes Dana Carvey's Church Lady look absolutely progressive.

Sean Paul Kelly, over at The Agonist has a post up asking you to share your favorite Science Fiction book.

Jim has moved his pawn up to f4, effectively isolating his Black Bishop.

MRWhite 18.gif

Now, my first urge was to move my pawn up to f6, apparently capturing the Black Bishop, and gaining an advantage. However, the flaw in that move would be the counter move of pawn to e5, threatening my Black Bishop, and eventually resulting in further degradation of my pawn structure in front of the King. So, instead I have chosen to move my Rook to e8.

MRBlack 18.gif

Okay Jim, now that I've stated openly of your Bishop's vulnerability, what are you going to do? What are you going to do?

The Scare Of My Life

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I walked into the family room and found Gayle, my girlfriend, unconscious. She was slumped to her left side, her head hanging over the arm of the chair, with her eyes open, looking at the ceiling. She was still stiff, as a person at the tail end of a seizure. She would not respond to her name, she would not close her eyes.

Needless to say, I freaked. I called 911 and got her shipped to the emergency room. Don't worry, she's fine now. It was heat stroke brought on by not eating enough and the diet pill Alli.

I have to admit, when I found her, I panicked. I thought my girlfriend was dead. I couldn't see any breathing, and could not feel a pulse. But I was freaking out, so I wasn't doing a very good job if feeling for one.

The girl I love was not responsive and now limp as hell.

Nothing is more horrifying than the loss of a loved one. I've only felt this pain once before. In 1991 my younger brother was killed in a car accident. The horror I felt today far exceeded what I felt when I loss my brother.

She is upstairs now, having been released from the emergency room following an IV of fluid, an EKG, and is now full of pizza and Pepsi. She's tired, has a headache, and still not fully 100%. But the tests showed no damage. She is okay. And I know now just how much she means to me.

God, I love that woman. No matter how insane she acts at time, how infuriating she can make me with her incredibly illogical thinking, her almost mystical incantation of denial, and her immensely frustrating stubbornness.

Her sister once described a scene from years ago, when Gayle was having an argument with an old boyfriend. She was so intense and combative that she stood barefoot in the snow for over half an hour just to win the argument. So, when she gets exceedingly angry, I accuse her of being barefoot in the snow.

She was stubborn when she regained consciousness, not wanting to go to the emergency room because she did not have any medical insurance. But having passed out twice more in the ambulance before pulling away decided against her wishes. Even at the emergency room, after telling her the full extent of her condition, she was still angry. Once again she was weaving about herself that incantation of denial, down playing the significance of the event, and pissing me off royally.

Once she was home, and obviously stable, I blasted her on her poor eating habits and trying to lose too much weight. Hard. She got the ass chewing of her life. And her daughter, also frustrated by the illogical reasoning behind Gayle's denial, joined in on the confrontation. Of course Gayle, being Gayle, was once again barefoot in the snow. Damn stubborn woman.

Ah, but she's The GirlFriend™, gots to love her.

Friday Stolen Code Blogging

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Bark Bark Woof Woof

Friday Blogaround
Summer starts tomorrow. So what's the LC been up to this week as we get ready for the lazy hazy crazy days?

- A Blog Around The Clock: home decor.
- archy: backwards march!
- Bark Bark Woof Woof: the Log Cabin Republicans.
- Bloggg: still mad for Hillary.
- Collective Sigh: wonderful news; happy dance time!
- Dohiyi Mir: Juneteenth!
- Echidne Of The Snakes: the pregnancy pact in Gloucester.
- Florida Progressive Coalition Blog: do something.
- Iddybud Journal: a Nobel commencement speech.
- Left Is Right: testifying about torture.
- Lefty Side of the Dial: short shots.
- Musing's musings: oh, that voice...
- Pen-Elayne on the Web: among other things, happy birthday to Paul McCartney.
- Rook's Rant: another Democratic win.
- rubber hose: compare and contrast.
- Scrutiny Hooligans: war criminals.
- SoonerThought: best science?
- Speedkill: psycho psychic.
- Steve Bates, The Yellow Doggerel Democrat: FISA fiasco.
- Stupid Enough Unexplanation: Michael Gerson takes on Al Franken.
- The Invisible Library: summer movie reviews.
- WTF Is It Now?? indies are not buying it.
- ...You Are A Tree: feeling scrabulous.
The rainy season has really arrived here in Florida. We need it, yes, but come on.... (Well, at least it's not a you-know-what.)
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You know, I've decided the d5 pawn is important and needs to be guarded. I just can't see letting my pawn structure get all chewed up over a Knight. If he takes my Knight, so be it. Yeah, so it's my White Bishop to a6.

MRBlack 17.gif

I would rather he initiate the Knight trade. Should I take his Knight with mine, all sorts of developmental opportunities are present for Jim. I am not interested in allowing his Rook to advanced. Nothing is more disheartening than to see a Queen fronted by a Rook. Nor, for that matter, am I interested in allowing him to move a pawn back into the d file where it could do all sorts of misbehaving harassment. Trust me, misbehaving harassment from pawns is very irritating.

Steve is not yet on the Red To Blue list, but that could change if he receivs more attention and, of course, money. So, if I happen to have any readers with room in their budget, you can go to the Actblue page I have created and make a contribution

And if you feel so inclined, you could also go to the Actblue page I set up for Al Franken as well.
Okay, here is Jim's 17th move in our ongoing Blogger's Chess Match: Knight to d4.

MRWhite 17.gif

So, he seeks to attack my Knight at c6 or even more sinister, my unprotected pawn at b5! No, I can not allow this grievious insult to be left unanswered. But for the moment I must, for off to work goes I.

A Two-For!

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What's this? I am linking to a second post of Atrios in as many days? I really must be sick. Anyway, he's once again made a relevant point.

Today Is A Better Day

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Yesterday was a very unpleasant experience, with my--for lack of a more tactful expression--balls aching as if they had been kicked. You men know of what I speak; the pain that occurs after said blow, usually lasting for a few minutes, maybe an hour. Yeah, well I had it all day.

Today, however, it feels as if the antibiotic is doing its job. I am already experiencing much less discomfort compared to yesterday. My gut hardly hurts, even after having coffee and breakfast, and my balls only hurt half as bad.

If I am truly heading towards wellness (yeah, yeah, contain yourself back there in the last row, you smart ass) I might resume Tour De Rook.

Dump Michele Bachmann

Unbelievable, Michele is discredited by a member of her own party! How pathetic is that?

Yeah, like I am expecting an answer.

Hat Tip: MNPublius
Washington Post

Democrat Donna F. Edwards was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives by voters in Montgomery and Prince George's counties yesterday, becoming the first black woman selected to serve Maryland in Congress.
What is this? The fourth win in a special election for the Democrats? Of course, the most important aspect of his win was Donna beating the incumbent during the primary. Either way, this just eludes to the approaching blow out in November.
I am linking to this TPM post simply because it brought up a thought. Through the years, I have never been a newspaper reader. I always heard the news by way of other people talking about what they had read, coupled with what I heard on the radio and TV. So, in a sense, the doom of the print newspaper industry just does not bother me all that much.

Also, it may explain why I took to blogs so easily. Blogs are simply a round table discussion, such as happens in cafes and coffee shops around the nation, only without the necessary step of having to leave the house and go to a cafe or coffee shop.

Eschaton: Lable Correctly

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It is a rare day indeed when I link to Atrios, but none-the-less, he makes a good point.

I am a little late to the party on this, but I still want to add my two cents: BULLSHIT!

New York Times

WASHINGTON -- The Army official who managed the Pentagon's largest contract in Iraq says he was ousted from his job when he refused to approve paying more than $1 billion in questionable charges to KBR, the Houston-based company that has provided food, housing and other services to American troops.


Army officials denied that Mr. Smith had been removed because of the dispute, but confirmed that they had reversed his decision, arguing that blocking the payments to KBR would have eroded basic services to troops. They said that KBR had warned that if it was not paid, it would reduce payments to subcontractors, which in turn would cut back on services.
Nothing but pure avarice. Cheney is simply robbing the treasury for his Saudi buddies. And KBR threatening to not perform services for the troops? Nothing more than extortion. Isn't there some federal law in place for just such an act? Why I believe so. RICO or some such thing.


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Well, it seems my symptoms were not typical for prostatitis, an inflammation of the prostate. So, after many side tracks and tests, there is finally something to treat, which is good, because the pain was getting worse. Anyway, I have started on a sulfa antibiotic medication.

Damn, it sure sucks to get old.

One From The Lost Archives

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I came across this old post of mine while working on my damaged archives backup:

I believe in the magic of the mind, the soul, and that it's name is imagination. I believe no one can tell me how to think. I believe only I can change my mind, but only with the help of others. I believe I count; as an American; a man; a human; as sentient life. I believe in a Higher Power that we truly cannot name. I believe that all emotions are gifts from Our Higher Power that, when ignored, turn against us. I believe that without war we could not have invented the word peace-and for that I feel sad. Finally-and most importantly-I believe if I want cream and sugar, I would not order coffee.
My apologies for the delay in posting Jim's latest move. I offer no excuse because--well--there is no excuse for such poor behavior. Anyway, Jim has decided to ignore my slow advance of pawns towards his King, and instead has chosen to attack my Queen by moving his Black Bishop to g5.

MRWhite 16.gif

So, I guess I have to move my Queen out of harm's way. So, without further ado, here is my move: Queen to C7.

MRBlack 16.gif

Oh, and I have been remiss in leaving a link to Jim's blog. It appears he is once again posting at his original haunt, Mockingbird's Medley, a development about which I am pleased.

Oldie But Goodie

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Not to be out done by PSoTD, here is a video I had posted a link to years ago--before the advent of YouTube--but have since had that link die. So, without further ado: Everybody Else Has Had More Sex Than Me


WASHINGTON - Tim Russert, NBC News' Washington bureau chief and the moderator of "Meet the Press," died Friday after a sudden heart attack at the bureau, NBC News said Friday. He was 58.

Russert was recording voiceovers for Sunday's "Meet the Press" program when he collapsed, the network said. No details were immediately available.

When I first read this over at Digby's, I thought it was some kind of joke, because there was no link, so I looked it up.

As always, I never speak ill of those who've passed on.

Blogger's Chess: My 15th Move

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Since he has castled into my advancing pawn structure, I figured, why not? So Pawn to a5.

MRBlack 15.gif

So, let's see how he deals with my advancing pawns on his King. After much whining and complaining about my poor gamesmanship, I am starting to feel a little more confident. Which, of course, means I am probably heading into a major mistake.

Friday Stolen Code Blogging

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Friday Blogaround

Have a touch of triskaidekaphobia? Relax and read up on the week's doings in the Liberal Coalition.

- A Blog Around The Clock: the internet is stealing our brains.
- archy: hey, we're still here.
- Bark Bark Woof Woof: laugh them off.
- Bloggg: More Republicans support gay marriage than they do President Bush.
- Collective Sigh: temperature control.
- Dohiyi Mir: it's the law.
- Echidne Of The Snakes: another lesson in anti-feminism.
- Florida Progressive Coalition Blog: support your local progressive bloggers.
- Iddybud Journal: Jude's video on global warming.
- Left Is Right: a libertarian's view of the economy.
- Lefty Side of the Dial: what TV shows would you like to see as video games?
- Musing's musings: "don't ask don't tell," don't work, don't keep it.
- Pen-Elayne on the Web: Hooray for Elayne!
- Rook's Rant: Bob Barr on the war on drugs. Plus, get well soon, Rook.
- rubber hose: not such strict constructionists.
- Scrutiny Hooligans: where's the food?
- SoonerThought: fighting the smears.
- Speedkill: an excellent choice.
- Steve Bates, The Yellow Doggerel Democrat: National Security Letters -- return to sender.
- Stupid Enough Unexplanation: picking on Cal Thomas is fun.
- The Invisible Library: on Dennis Kucinich and his impeachment quest.
- WTF Is It Now?? on Obama's lobbying troubles vs. McCain's.
Knock on wood...and don't forget your dad on Sunday.
Thanks, Mustang Bobby, I will. Oh, and until I read the link, I did not realize it was Friday the 13th. I knew it was Friday, and I knew it was the 13th, I just didn't realize it was Friday The 13th. Isn't that a movie?

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I am sorry. With all my appointments and also the discomfort after them, I forgot I'd actually prepared the next graph of our game. Anyway, here it is, Jim's 15th move: Queen side castle.

MRWhite 15.gif

I am not so sure that was a wise move, castling right into my approaching pawns. But than, I didn't exactly show any mastery of this game with my early advance of my Queen, so maybe I don't know what I am talking about.

Well, doh! of course I don't. I suck at chess.

Of course, with all my physical discomfort and preoccupation with appointments and suffering, I have not yet considered my move. But I promise I will not forget that I have a move to make.

All Done

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And yet, despite the two procedures, it appears they still do not know what is wrong with me.

Off To The Hospital

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I am scheduled for an ultra-sound and an x-ray of my colon. I am not all that concerned about having the ultra-sound, but the x-ray is a bit disconcerting as it will require a barium enema. So, with that picture in your mind, I bid you farewell for the morning.

Speaking of Still More Chess

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Sometimes, I just get lucky.

Play chess online!

After moving my Bishop out, my opponent resigned, figuring I had mate in 2 moves. He obviously didn't see the block with the Queen. Or, wasn't willing to consider losing his Queen. Had he moved his Queen to block the check by my Bishop, he does stave off mate. But I get to start munching on all sorts of pieces.

A few years ago, this game would have been a loss for me. I would have freaked out over his Queen and Knight being in my front ranks. I would have mounted some sort of defense without considering a quick attack of my own.
Huffington Post

For years, I served as a federal prosecutor and member of the House of Representatives defending the federal pursuit of the drug prohibition.

Today, I can reflect on my efforts and see no progress in stopping the widespread use of drugs. I'll even argue that America's drug problem is larger today than it was when Richard Nixon first coined the phrase, "War on Drugs," in 1972.

America's drug problem is only compounded by the vast amounts of money directed at this ongoing battle. In 2005, more than $12 billion dollars was spent on federal drug enforcement efforts while another $30 billion was spent to incarcerate non-violent drug offenders.

The result of spending all of those taxpayer's dollars? We now have a huge incarceration tab for non-violent drug offenders and, at most, a 30% interception rate of hard drugs. We are also now plagued with the meth labs that are popping up like poisonous mushrooms across the country.

Offered without comment.

Abdominal Distress!

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Okay, than. I went to my doctor today, now that an appendicitis has been ruled out. Not that it was pleasant. All that chalk they make you drink in a 4 hour period does indeed cause diarrhea. You see, last Thursday I had a CT scan. After all was said and done, I was given a clean bill of health, where the appendix was concerned. However, there is still considerable discomfort and bloating.

Indeed, after my primary doctor did an abdominal examination, I am now hurting throughout my abdomen, from the top of my stomach down to my testicles. This really sucks. He could feel bloating, but was unable to give me a definitive diagnosis. Instead, I have to have an ultra-sound and a colon ex-ray, requiring a barium enema. I am not looking forward to tomorrow or Thursday.

Steve Sarvi Blog Day

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Today a group of bloggers is holding Blog About Steve Sarvi Day. As I have mentioned before, I occasionally volunteer for Steve's phone bank on Saturday mornings. Mostly as a means to get his name out there amongst the Democratic members in the area.

In case I have any people who are interested, you can go to his ActBlue page and help him out with a donation. There are other worthy Minnesota candidates who would welcome donations as well.


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Well, at least he didn't forget Poland!

Hat Tip: Prometheus 6

Blogger's Chess: My 14th Move

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Well, Carl, noting in this comment, that my Queen side Knight was basically languishing on the back row, being of no help what-so-ever. Well, I can't abide by slackers, so it is indeed time to move him into the fray. Now, I had meant to on several earlier moves, but always ended up either saving my Queen, or considering some other possibility more pressing. However, with his last move, I am not pressed for any type of possible attack, and have a breather. So, Knight to c6.

MRBlack 14.gif

You know what I would like? Of course, I understand you couldn't know, because those few readers of mine are anything but clairvoyant. Besides, I am about to tell you, so you don't need to attempt an answer.

Anyway, I would like this pain in my gut to go away. About two weeks ago, I started having a sharp, though not extremely, pain in the right side of my gut, just below the stomach. It was only acting up occasionally. But of late, it has become a constant nuisance, waking me up in the night, now on several occasions during the night. Even now, I can feel it, still sharp, yet constant.

On top of that, my stomach has been acting up. It has been producing even more gas then it use to, resulting in an inordinate amount of embarrassing flatulence and burping. But the most disconcerting is the radiating pain that travels up into the right side of my rib cage, back to my kidney, and down into my right hip and buttock.

I've been to the doctor, and I have had a CT scan completed. This ruled out a appendicitis, which I am grateful to have learned. So, that is all good and fine. However, I am still experiencing discomfort, and it is not showing any signs of dissipating. Indeed, it appears to be getting worse.

Of course, all this is to explain the lack of posts about the Tour De Rook. With this pain, and not knowing its cause, I have decided to take a short hiatus from bicycling. I don't want to aggravate an already uncomfortable condition. At the moment I am waiting for a call back from the doctor.
So, Jim has decided to put a stop to my eventual movement of pawns on his flank; Pawn to c3.

MRWhite 14.gif

I really was looking forward to moving them closer to his Queen side pawn structure. Oh well.

New York Times

Medical marijuana was legalized under state law by California voters in 1996, and since then 11 other states have followed, even though federal law still bans the sale of any marijuana. But some frustrated residents and law enforcement officials say the California law has increasingly and unintentionally provided legal cover for large-scale marijuana growers -- and the problems such big-money operations can attract.

"It's a clear shield for commercial operations," said Mike Sweeney, 60, a supporter of both medical marijuana and a local ballot measure on June 3 that called for new limits on the drug in Mendocino. "And we don't want those here."

The outcome of the ballot measure is not known, as votes are still being counted, but such community push-back is increasingly common across the state, even in the most liberal communities. In recent years, dozens of local governments have banned or restricted cannabis clubs, more formally known as dispensaries, that provide medical marijuana, in the face of public safety issues involved in its sale and cultivation, including crime and environmental damage.

What? This is a surprise? Of course making marijuana legal for medical use was going to be cover for increased production. That was a given. What is ridiculous is that there was no plan in place to deal with an obvious unintended consequence.

Or more to the point, that the eventual legalization of marijuana for recreational use moved a step closer.

Honestly, prohibition does not work. It never has, it never will.
This is one hell of a good commencement speech.

Speaking of Chess

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I play at a web site called GameKnot. I just won this game. All because of a simple pawn move by my opponent. As soon as he made it, I knew the game had turned in my favor. Prior to that point, I was playing pretty damn poorly.
Play chess online!

 Can anyone tell me when my opponent made the bad pawn move?

Site Visitors!

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At 6:30 PM this evening someone from Saint Mary's, Georgia was the 55000 visitor. They were doing a Google search for "iraq war budget."

I just did a quick check of the search results, and I am #2 on that search list result, on page one! There is something wrong when I am higher than most of the major newspapers. If there is such a commotion for holding down government spending, than the cost of the Iraq war should be getting a lot more coverage.
I've decided that this game sucks. I screwed it up royally. But the game must go on, so I move  Queen back one space to e7.

MRBlack 13.gif

Why? I don't know. Because I don't know what the hell I am doing? Because I suck at chess? Well, yes, of course that is obvious. This game proves beyond a shadow of a doubt that I play chess as well as Bush runs the country.

Anyway, sorry for the delay, Jim. Have at it.
Bark Bark Woof Woof

Friday Blogaround
Did anything happen this week? Ask the Liberal Coalition.

- A Blog Around The Clock: honeybees dancing
- archy: passive aggressive resistance, or just laziness?
- Bark Bark Woof Woof: that morning forty years ago.
- Bloggg: had enough?
- Dohiyi Mir: adventures in babysitting.
- Echidne Of The Snakes: Apparently Granny Clampett is Cal Thomas's ideal woman president.
- Florida Progressive Coalition Blog: If not Hillary, who's the next woman to run for president?
- Left Is Right is asking for your predictions of Republican shenanigans.
- Lefty Side of the Dial: Lefty doesn't like Chris Matthews.
- Musing's musings: Make up and get to work, Dems.
- Pen-Elayne on the Web reviews a new movie by Neil Innes.
- Rook's Rant: Rook is sorry to see Hillary go.
- rubber hose: permanently in Iraq?
- Scrutiny Hooligans: not a bargaining chip.
- SoonerThought: Senate rebukes Bush and Cheny; they lied about Iraq.
- Speedkill: Deceptions.
- Steve Bates, The Yellow Doggerel Democrat: Get well, Tabitha.
- Stupid Enough Unexplanation: Rush Limbaugh explains why it's not his fault the GOP will lose.
- The Invisible Library: face reality, people.
- WTF Is It Now?? No, Sen. McCain, you did not.
Have a good weekend. I still have 2,759 boxes to unpack...
[Sigh] It seems I am being misunderstood all the way around when it comes to my last post about Hillary. I am not sad to see Hillary suspend her campaign. I was sad to see the manner in which she was forced out. Had a man been in Hillary's place, he would have been able to stay in the race right into the convention. I am bemoaning the sexism that is apparent in the push for her to bow out of the race as far back as four months ago.

Clinton Suspends Campaign

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Look, I am all for a unified party, no question about that. On the other hand, I think the insertion of the congress into the primary race was a bit out of bounds. And yes, I know the Founding Fathers didn't exactly believe in pure elections. They did create a system where the state assemblies could pick Senators.

Anyway, I am sorry to see Hillary suspend her campaign under duress. She's going against her character, which is a shame. I believe her tenacity and fighting spirit were two of her best qualities. Two qualities which are routinely vilified in women.

Obviously, women have a much more insidious mind set to overcome in this country. Not that Blacks, Hispanics, or other races, have it easy. Despite Barack Obama's successful primary run, it is still a long way before equality of race is the norm in this country. Still, I believe women's equality has one big block that the minorities don't experience; there are women that do not believe in feminism.

Now, I am not about to claim that a majority of women oppose feminism. But enough that the misogamist mindset is able to sustain itself. Nor am I suggesting the misogamist mindset is the reason Obama won the Democratic primary.

I challenge anyone to show me a block of the Black populace in this country that is advocating a return to Jim Crow laws. Yet, the site linked above is advocating a return to pre-industrial life for women. Hell, I've heard a woman state that women have no place in the voting booth!

As a whole, though, our country has made great strides in equality. But equality is a marathon race, not a sprint, and we've got a hell of a long way to go still.

Pawn to h4? Oh, so now he's going to try and attack my Queen with his Bishop?

MRWhite 13.gif

Fine, you just be that way Jim, you just be that way.
Okay, enough is enough. Time to get that King behind some solid protection. King side castle.

MRBlack 12.gif

It's all yours Jim.
Sigh. He's firming up the protection of his pawn on the e file, while at the same time making room for a King side castle. At first, I thought Pawn to g3 might be considered a Zwischenzug, but in reading wikipedia, I see I was mistaken.

MRWhite 12.gif

Well, I suppose I have to consider my next move. Fine.

CHICAGO - United Airlines said Wednesday that it's cutting up to 1,100 more jobs, removing an additional 70 fuel-guzzling airplanes from its fleet and slashing domestic capacity as it tries to cope with spiraling fuel prices.

The nation's No. 2 carrier said it plans to cut an additional 900 to 1,100 salaried, contract and management employees by the end of the year, in addition to 500 previously announced job reductions. The combined reductions mean the airline is cutting nearly 3 percent of its 55,000 workers worldwide.

And another corner.........

Obama Claims Nomination

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Washington Post

With a split decision in the final two primaries and a flurry of superdelegate endorsements, Sen. Barack Obama sealed the Democratic presidential nomination last night after a grueling and history-making campaign against Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton that will make him the first African American to head a major-party ticket.
I am ready to give Senator Obama the nomination. But am I not going to knock Senator Clinton for her lack of concession.

Clinton, who waged a fierce campaign to become the first woman nominated for the presidency, spoke shortly before Obama at a rally in New York. Amid questions about when or whether she would quit the race, she declared: "This has been a long campaign, and I will be making no decisions tonight."

From my perspective, Senator Clinton work damn hard to earn her delegates, and didn't exactly lose all that many super delegates. Maybe, had there been more of an exodus of super delegates to Obama, I could understand the call for her to gracefully step aside.

In 2004 Bush made the foolish move of claiming a mandate. As history has already proven, he did not have a mandate. Indeed, despite having a Republican controlled congress at his beck and call, he and them accomplished nothing of significance. That claim proved to be a duck's echo.

Now, here we are today, with Obama making claims of being the Democratic party's nominee. There is only one problem, as I see it; Clinton has some delegates. Actually, quite a bit of delegates. More than enough to keep Obama from making any claims of having a mandate. Lets keep in mind there is still the matter of building a Democratic Party Platform. No way is Hillary going to allow Obama to have total say in its development.

If you think she is, you haven't been paying attention. She has been a scrappy candidate from the time she lost her first primary. She has tenaciously held onto her hopes. She has proven beyond a doubt she is not a quitter.

Then there is the matter of Obama's claim of being inclusive. He's talked about changing the culture in Washington. He's talked of a willingness to include the Republicans in governing. So, now we see just how much that claim is rhetoric, or if he's a man of his word. Will he negotiate with Clinton, or will he pull strong arm tactics and freeze her out of the platform building process? My hope; he is a man of his word, that he not only talks the talk, but walks the walk.

For years I have been witness to complaints over the Democratic Party's lack of back bone. Now, here's Clinton standing tough, showing back bone, and what happens? Yup, everyone who complained about a lack of back bone, suddenly start bitching about her need to back down. So, in other words, they want to see back bone only when it's against the Republicans.

If you are going to ask for something, you best be ready to accept it when if finally manifests, otherwise you might find yourself lumped in the column labeled "hypocrite."

So, Hillary, keep it up. You go right a head and supply that back bone. Show the rest of the party how it's done. Then, maybe, after it's all done and said, your back bone will have been infused into the Democratic party of 2008.
Well, I hadn't thought I'd attack Jim's flank. But there you go, Pawn to b5.

MRBlack 11.gif

So, does he castle? Or does he start defending against my pawns? Or does he go off the map even more than I already have in this game? Stay tuned for more exciting chess at the same Rook time (yeah, like that's likely), same Rook channel (well, that's a given).

Tour De Rook

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Leg 15: This morning, before the rain hit, I managed 9.58 miles in 42 minutes and 44 seconds of riding time, with a ten minute stretch out in there somewhere. I achieved an average of 13.3 mph and topped off a max speed of 29 mph.

G.M. Closing 4 Plants

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New York Times

Responding to a consumer shift to more fuel-efficient vehicles, General Motors said Tuesday that it would stop making pickup trucks and big S.U.V.s at four North American assembly plants and would consider selling its Hummer brand.
Yeeeee Hawwww! Another corner turned! So long 19,000 jobs.

Tuesday's announcement comes a few days after G.M. said said that 19,000 hourly workers -- a quarter of a unionized work force that already has been drastically pared down -- have accepted buyouts.

Because I am just too damn tired to type trash, Jim's 11th move without comment: Queen to e2.

MRWhite 11.gif

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