Saturday, January 31, 2009

What is Elmo?  A seal?

I've been watching "Scrubs" a long time but I never thought I'd be treated to Elmo asking "She yo woman?"

Friday, January 30, 2009

Quote of the day - "The trouble with socialism is that eventually you run out of other people's money" - Margaret Thatcher  (Lifted from New England Republican).

Thursday, January 29, 2009

The Generational Theft Act moves to the Senate

Since I have to work all day, I always feel like I'm adding two cents to an issue that's been thoroughly reviewed. But I'll just say a couple of things: no matter how ginormous they make this stimulus bill, the actual cost will be much higher due to the interest on all the money we're going to borrow.

Who's going to pay for it? The kids. They'll have to pick up the bill for another $300+ billion in interest, pushing the overall cost of the package well over a trillion dollars. The consequences of this unchecked spending will put further strain on a generation that is just starting to see the cost of runaway entitlement spending.

Support for the stimulus bill is slipping as Americans catch wind of the inevitable pork, including fish barriers and honeybee insurance. Plus, simple math indicates that a trillion dollars, even if it created the 4 million jobs that Obama promised, adds up to $250,000 per job. However, since Americans haven't cared that much about deficit spending from World War II to the prescription drug benefit, I'm doubtful the Republicans in the Senate will find the spine to stop this $1 trillion mistake. But I hope they do, for the children.
No avail for snail mail

Fox News: "Experts see dim future for U.S. Postal Service"

A day after Postmaster General John Potter threatened to cut mail delivery from six to five days a week, postal experts, direct marketing executives and politicians alike said the outlook for the quasi-governmental U.S. Postal Service is bleak.

"It certainly represents a divergence of mail service as we know it," Postal Regulatory Commission Chairman Dan Blair told of the potential move to five-day service as a cost-cutting measure. "But we don't really rely on mail the same way we do today as we did five, 10 years ago. Our expectations of postal service are different from a generation ago."
Oh, we'll have mail. Forever. You don't want to incur the wrath of the Postmaster General:

People will mail more when they invent a junk mail filter for envelopes.
No love lost – I listened to the impeachment vote of Rod Blagojevich on C-Span radio today and there was not a remotely sympathetic ally of the governor in the Illinois Senate. They couldn't wait to get rid of him.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Too tired to blog - It took me two hours to get home tonight, driving through the ice and dodging the snowplows that set up a (slowly) rolling roadblock on I-91.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Great job, Congress!

CNN: "Congress has moved to prevent money from the proposed $825 billion stimulus package from being used for zoos, aquariums, golf courses, swimming pools and casinos, an effort to ensure the bill funds only what it calls the "highest quality" infrastructure projects."

You know, there were some people in Washington saying: "Hey, let's spend the stimulus money on go-kart tracks!" But then somebody stepped in and yelled "No! We have to spend the taxpayers' money wisely." So they didn't spend the money on go-kart tracks.

Bravo, lords and ladies, bravo. [sarcastic clapping]
Fiddle-de-doo – American author John Updike died today at age 76. He was a literary master, a wizard at setting scenes and establishing characters. You can get a taste of his style in the short story "A&P" about a minor incident in a grocery store.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Nancy Pelosi: "There is no Social Security crisis"

(H/T - Theo)
The kids will pick up the bill - Dr. Sanity declares "Hakuna Matata" on the massive stimulus bill.  Let's live it up!  (H/T Maggie).

Related - Charles Krauthammer on the non-stimulus pork in the bill: "Look, this is one of the worst bill in galactic history."  And: "We will leave behind, after spending $1 trillion, a dog run in East Potomac Park."

More - No Looking Backwards: "How 'bout a nice greasy pork sandwich served in a dirty ashtray?"
Please welcome Liz Lemon!

Me, last month:
On the one hand, it appears that the law is clear and the (not-yet-impeached) governor can appoint whomever he wants to fill Barack Obama's Senate seat. On the other hand, it seems reasonable that the legislature has a check on executive power in extraordinary circumstances (e.g. Senator Oprah).
USA Today, um, today:
Blagojevich considered Oprah Winfrey for Senate post
Advantage: Viking Pundit!

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Newton and Leibniz were pikers - Science News reports that Archimedes was figuring out the basics of calculus.  (H/T Fark)
Famous robot passes away - Now who's going to warn Will Robinson?
Situational environmentalism – Good article in today's WSJ about how those who champion green energy policies suddenly find a lot to dislike when it causes "visual pollution" such as the proposed Cape Wind project off Nantucket Sound.
Free stuff, somehow paid for – George Will reviews the move to expand SCHIP to, essentially, everybody: "Grace-Marie Turner, a student of health-care policies, says this SCHIP expansion is sensible -- if your goal is quickly to get as many people on public coverage as possible and to have children grow up thinking that it is normal for them to get their health insurance from the government. That is the goal."

As Will notes, the State Children's Health Insurance Plan was passed by a Republican Congress to fill the gap for people whose income precludes them from receiving Medicare Medicaid. But now, as all government programs, it's no longer just for "poor" kids in another signpost of our creeping socialism. Let no good deed go unpunished.
There goes the wiretapping controversy

Meet the new boss, same as the old boss:

The Obama administration fell in line with the Bush administration Thursday when it urged a federal judge to set aside a ruling in a closely watched spy case weighing whether a U.S. president may bypass Congress and establish a program of eavesdropping on Americans without warrants.
Old narrative: Big Brother fascism. New narrative: hopeful, one-way dialogue sharing!
Quote of the Day - Orin Kerr: "To answer the question "How many former editors of the Harvard Law Review does it take to administer the Presidential oath properly?" is "More than two.""

Friday, January 23, 2009

Computer maintenance - Several months ago, I essentially gave up my laptop computer to my kids so they could play Club Penguin or Adventure Quest or whatever.  Tonight, I discovered the wages of sin: ITunes update, Flash driver update, Java update, Norton Security updates, Mozilla Firefox updates, etc.  Geez.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

NY Senate news - Just in, via Fark: Kirsten Gillibrand to fill Clinton's seat.
Moving pictures - Here's a list of the Academy Award nominees.  Know what movie I saw that's on this list?  Wall-E.  That's it.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Do-over - Just to make sure it's all legal-like, Obama took the Presidential oath of office a second time.  No word on whether Justice Roberts used a cue card this time.
Things that can't go on forever, don't

Writing in Newsweek, Robert Samuelson draws a common thread between the bankrupt U.S. automakers and the similar legacy costs of the Baby Boomers:

The plight of the U.S. auto industry provides an ominous warning. For years, the Big Three and the United Auto Workers constructed an ever-more-generous system of early retirement and retiree health benefits for their employees. But ultimately, the costs became oppressive. The main victims were younger workers, whose jobs, wages and benefits were squeezed to protect retirees.

Similarly, the promises made to retiring baby boomers may impose crushing costs on society. Taxes may rise, other government programs—from national parks to college grants—may suffer and long-term economic growth may slow. Again, the main victims would be today's young, who would pay higher taxes and receive fewer public services.

Already, the three major programs serving the elderly population - Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid - account for two fifths of federal spending. In fiscal 2008, that was $1.3 trillion out of total spending of $2.98 trillion. By contrast, all defense spending totaled $613 billion.
Samuelson notes that paying for all our promised entitlements would entail a tax increase on the order of 50% which pushes the Laffer curve to a point where revenues can't possibly be collected. The alternative is a lower tax rate coupled with a elimination of everything in the national budget that is not entitlements and interest on the national debt. As Francis Fukuyama writes in today's WSJ (fifth item) it's time to "Get serious about entitlements"

We find ourselves in a pretty dire situation. The baby-boom generation -- of which I'm a member -- has gone through its peak earning years overconsuming, not saving enough, and exempting itself from as much taxation as possible. This could happen only because savers in places like China were willing to hold a seemingly endless number of dollars to finance this binge. We've had a pretty good ride, but things aren't going to continue in this fashion.
What's going to happen when China decides we're no longer a good credit risk or, heaven forbid, starts cashing in the Treasury bonds they've accumulated? It's going to be ugly, seven ways to Sunday.
Caroline bows out - Just breaking from the NY Post: "Caroline Kennedy has told Gov. David Paterson that she is withdrawing her name from consideration to replace outgoing Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton in the U.S. Senate, The Post has learned."
Is "Lost" a repeat? - No, no, NO! According to this interview with the show's creators, the ratio of answers to new questions will be slightly positive in tonight's season premiere.

Extra - Top 10 "Lost" episodes.
Our fanatical viewing of "The Amazing Race" paid off

I have exactly one thing to blog about tonight: my son won his school's contest for the National Geographic Bee. The winning geography question came down to what civilization was based at Tenochtitlan, on the site of modern-day Mexico City. My son wrote "Aztec" while his competitor guessed "Mayan."

He received a $25 check and a nice little medal from National Geographic. As the winner for our town, he now takes a written test that is sent to Washington for grading and the top 100 scores in Massachusetts go on to the state final. Then it's on to Washington and the finals, hosted by Alex Trebek. Hooray!

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

We are one!

I caught the inauguration from Aretha Franklin to the benediction by Rev. Joseph Lowery, which produced the most cringeworthy moment of the ceremony when he threw in his "blame Whitey!" line. I guess he didn't get the memo about moving beyond racism and partisanship.

Good luck, President Obama. Here's hoping you can stay classier than your supporters, those dreamy, hope-y, change-ologists who think it's a great idea - now - to do something constructive superficial. No more stretch limos for these celebrities! For now on, it's only Cadillac Escalade Hybrids to the airport before taking the Gulfstream to Sundance.

Extra - Good roundup from Kim.

More - Transcript of "I pledge" video.

Monday, January 19, 2009

History – I'll be at work tomorrow, but I'm probably going to try to find a restaurant with a television so I can watch the inauguration of Barack Obama around lunchtime. I may disagree with his politics, but he's our President now and there's no denying the political and sociological gravity of tomorrow's events.
Free speech under attack – blame the Internets

Quite a story in today's Boston Globe: a girl was punished by her school for something she wrote on her blog and a federal judge ruled the school was within its rights. It seems that the ubiquity and easy accessibility of everything on the Web has changed the rules of the First Amendment:

[Judge Mark] Kravitz's ruling relied partly on the ambiguity over whether schools can regulate students' expression on the Internet. He noted in his ruling that times have changed since 1979, when a landmark student speech case set boundaries for schools regulating off-campus speech.

Now, he wrote, students can send e-mails to hundreds of classmates at a time or post entries that can be read instantly by students, teachers, and administrators.

"Off-campus speech can become on-campus speech with the click of a mouse," Kravitz wrote.
So, as the logic of the ruling goes, Avery Doninger had the right to stand outside the school's property boundaries and make her opinions known. But once she posted these criticisms on her blog, her thoughts transformed from off-campus to on-campus speech.

I can't help but wonder what the judge's ruling would have been if she had made a critical speech off school grounds but somebody videotaped it and posted it on You Tube.

This case is surely heading to the Supreme Court.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

So much for objective science – It looks like Obama's choice for science advisor believes in free inquiry in that you're free to agree with his theories. Here's Jeff Jacoby on John Holdren: "Holdren is a physicist, a professor of environmental policy at Harvard, a former president of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, director of the Woods Hole Research Center, and author or coauthor of many papers and books. He is also a doom-and-gloomer with a trail of erroneous apocalyptic forecasts dating back nearly 40 years - and a decided lack of tolerance for environmental opinions that conflict with his."
It's Hollywood, what do you expect? - Hot Air is soliciting candidates for the worst political movies of the past 50 years.  My choice would be the saccharine-awful Kevin Kline flick Dave which beats you over the head with the idea that a good-hearted everyman and his accountant buddy can cut through the Washington swamp and solve all the nation's problems.  He utterly charms Sigourney Weaver, also.
I'm spent - Last night, I was involved in hosting an all-night trivia game at Williams College.  A fun time was had by all, but I just woke up a couple hours ago after an all-day nap.  To paraphrase Danny Glover, I'm getting too old for college all-nighters anymore.

Friday, January 16, 2009

Now we'll never know why he resigned

British actor Patrick McGoohan, forever known as "Number 6" in the cult TV show "The Prisoner" died Tuesday at age 80. If you've never seen "The Prisoner" then you're living in purgatory and don't even know it.
The can has been kicked to a new generation

I'm not a big fan of the new guy but I'll change my opinion 180 degrees if Obama moves forward with real entitlement reform. WashPost: "Obama pledges entitlement reform"

President-elect Barack Obama pledged yesterday to shape a new Social Security and Medicare "bargain" with the American people, saying that the nation's long-term economic recovery cannot be attained unless the government finally gets control over its most costly entitlement programs.

"What we have done is kicked this can down the road. We are now at the end of the road and are not in a position to kick it any further," he said. "We have to signal seriousness in this by making sure some of the hard decisions are made under my watch, not someone else's."
Of course, we've heard this song before:

Obama is not the first incoming president to make bold declarations about overhauling the nation's retirement and health-care systems. Both Bill Clinton and George W. Bush made similar vows.
"Yes we can"? Or "kick that can"? We'll see.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

If Obama says "banana" everybody chug – Odds are high for "the United States" and "change" in the inaugural speech, low for "Angela Merkel."
Candy for everyone!

Via Townhall, here's a portion of the $825 billion (with a B) spending plan proposed by Congress:

-$6 billion to weatherize "modest income homes."
-$6 billion to provide internet in "underserved" areas
-$6 billion for "higher education modernization."
-$2.4 billion for carbon capture demonstration programs
-$500 million for energy efficient manufacturing demonstration projects.
-$1.5 billion for expanding "good jobs in biomedical research"
-$400 million "to put more scientists to work doing climate change research"
-$650 million to continue the coupon program to enable American households to convert from analog television transmission to digital transmission.
-$300 million for the National Wildlife Refuges and National Fish Hatcheries
-$50 million for the National Endowment for the Arts

This is the inevitable result whenever there's a huge pile of money to be spent although this is money we're going to borrow from China to pile on the unfunded liabilities we already can't afford. Congress would do considerably less harm - and spend less money - by sticking to just one BIG idea. For $825 billion, you can send every American a check for $2750 to pay down credit card debt, save, or spend on stuff.
Bush's farewell speech – What can I say? People who like him will see it as a classy farewell while those who don't will see a play for justification. My feeling is that Dubya should have spent more time communicating with the American people and explaining his decisions throughout his tenure instead of heading down into the White House bunker.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Goodbye Triple-A Road - The possibility of the U.S. government defaulting on debt inches up: "Last week, markets pegged the probability of a U.S. default at 6 percent over the next 10 years, compared with just 1 percent a year ago. For technical reasons, this is not a precise reading of investors' views. Nonetheless, the trend is real, and it is grounded in some pretty fundamental concerns." (HT: Mankiw)
More Mother Earth lovin' - A NY Congressman tows his short-range hybrid to Washington: "So Massa wasted several times the amount of energy he needed for 300-mile order to make a point about the importance of conservation and alternative energy."
My kung fu is better than your kung fu

Derrick Jackson usually has a must-skip column in the Boston Globe once a week; today is no exception. In "Reclaiming Science" he profiles Jane Lubchenco who will be bringing "science" back to the White House:

The Bush administration paid so little attention to any of this that Lubchenco told the Associated Press a month before the presidential election, "The Bush administration has not been respectful of the science."
Said Ms. Lubchenco. Jackson's love letter casts aside the idea of objectivity to portray Lubchenco as a Cassandra unheard by the unscientific Bush Administation. Is her science sound? Who cares! Lubchenco is the sole source for the column and since her science falls on the side of Al Gore and all the other Lubchencos in the world, it must be correct.

Maybe Jackson should have read some Michael Crichton:

I want to pause here and talk about this notion of consensus, and the rise of what has been called consensus science. I regard consensus science as an extremely pernicious development that ought to be stopped cold in its tracks. Historically, the claim of consensus has been the first refuge of scoundrels; it is a way to avoid debate by claiming that the matter is already settled. Whenever you hear the consensus of scientists agrees on something or other, reach for your wallet, because you're being had.

Let's be clear: the work of science has nothing whatever to do with consensus. Consensus is the business of politics. Science, on the contrary, requires only one investigator who happens to be right, which means that he or she has results that are verifiable by reference to the real world. In science consensus is irrelevant. What is relevant is reproducible results. The greatest scientists in history are great precisely because they broke with the consensus.

There is no such thing as consensus science. If it's consensus, it isn't science. If it's science, it isn't consensus. Period.
Stick that in your furnace and burn it, because it's going to be bitterly cold here in New England this week.

Extra - PowerLine: "It's really, really cold out there!" What are you going to believe, your freezing arse or the consensus scientists?

More - Gateway Pundit: "Brrrrrrr"

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Treasure of the Sierra Madre, Somali-styleNYT: "The body of a Somali pirate who drowned just after receiving part of a ransom washed ashore with more than $150,000 in cash, a resident of Xarardheere, a coastal town, said Sunday. Five pirates drowned Friday when their small boat capsized after they received a reported $3 million ransom for releasing a Saudi oil tanker."
Towards a more perfect union

Thankfully, all the problems in Massachusetts have been solved so Beacon Hill is moving to force chain restaurants to post calorie counts of their meals. It's for the children. Here's Jeff Jacoby with "Want a warning label with those fries?"

That always seems to be the nannies' bottom line, whether the risk is said to be from tobacco, global warming, or cars without airbags: We must take away some freedom or more people will die.
Now that the smokers have been shunned and marginalized in society, it's time to move on to the fatties, then the drinkers, then NASCAR fans. Eventually we'll have our perfect egalitarian society as envisioned in Harrison Bergeron.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

That must be outstanding bread - CNN "Zimbabwe introduces new $50 billion note": "Zimbabwe's central bank will introduce a $50 billion note -- enough to buy just two loaves of bread -- as a way of fighting cash shortages amid spiraling inflation."
Can we take a breath before we spend a trillion dollars?

While Washington gears up to do what Washington does best (spend money) is there anybody willing to ask if this stimulus is the right move? NYT: "No Instruction Manual as Stimulus Bill Takes Shape"

Christina Romer, whom Mr. Obama has designated to be his chief economist, concluded in research she helped write in 1994 that interest-rate policy is the most powerful force in economic recoveries and that fiscal stimulus generally acts too slowly to be of much help in pulling the economy out of recessions, though associates said she now supports a big stimulus package if policy makers roll it out early enough in the recession.
Our budget deficit and national debt are reaching levels unseen since World War II and we're about borrow more money from Beijing for a "stimulus" with dubious effectiveness.

Friday, January 09, 2009

The economy is bad because we can't do math - I'm 50% sure that this statistic is 100% wrong.
There will be no debate - Conservative David Horowitz recently appeared at a forum discussing academic freedom and his ideology was challenged by incisive questions such as: "What is he doing here?" Via Arts & Letters, here's Impasse at the MLA.

Thursday, January 08, 2009

Obama grabs the third rail. OK, he places a light fingernail on it.

Entitlement reform on the table? What's up with that? Boston Globe: "Medicare, Social Security eyed - Obama names fiscal watchdog"

Pointing with concern to "red ink as far as the eye can see," President-elect Barack Obama pledged yesterday to tackle Social Security and Medicare as a central part of his effort to control federal spending and named a special watchdog to eliminate government waste - even as he campaigned anew to spend the largest pile of taxpayer money in history to revive the sinking economy.
The President-elect gave no details but it seems to me that simply raising the issue signals that he's keeping all options on the table. I'm extremely doubtful he'll do anything aside from raising taxes.

Extra - IBD editorial: "Can Social Security get a new deal?"

Wednesday, January 07, 2009

Question for legal minds sharper than mine - If Rod Blagojevich had appointed Rod Blagojevich, is there anything at all the U.S. Senate could do to block his self-appointment?

Trillion-dollar deficits – Former Comptroller General David Walker speaks: "We need to realize that the same factors that led to the subprime crisis - too much debt, too little attention to cash flow, ineffective risk management, and waiting to do something until the crisis hits the door - those same factors exist for the federal government’s fiscal situation, with one big difference: No one is going to bail out America."

For more background, check out the Peter G. Peterson Foundation where you can find out how much you owe the government to cover all of its unfunded liabilities. Get to work because, as of today, you owe $184,000.

Tuesday, January 06, 2009

The Senate drama – What now for the Harry Reid/Roland Burris showdown? The Washington Post lays out the options. Almost everybody agrees a special election would be preferable but Burris appears ready to fight it out.

UpdateReid caves: "Senate Democrats have no choice but to change their tone about Roland Burris becoming a U.S. senator because Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich "called our bluff" in appointing someone over their objections, a senior Democratic congressional source conceded Wednesday."

Really? The U.S. Senate has no choice but to take somebody appointed by a runaway, felonious Governor? What if he had appointed David Duke? Or Al Sharpton? Or Tom Cruise?

Well, they played the race card and won. Congratulations, Bobby Rush! No lynchings today.

Monday, January 05, 2009

It's just that simple

Here's James Carroll in the Boston Globe laying out the opportunity for Obama to resolve the Gaza/Israeli conflict:

What is needed now are firm messages from Washington: Israel must cease fire, respect Palestinian rights, and keep agreements; Palestinians must halt rockets, repudiate terror, and empower moderates toward a new unity. Obama must draw the line with both.
Why didn't anybody think of this before? I haven't heard such awesome advice since Steve Martin detailed how to become a millionaire:

First, get a million dollars.
Yes we can!

Sunday, January 04, 2009

Did you know Congress got a pay raise? Neither did I. - Jeff Jacoby: "You'd think members of Congress would be ashamed to take more of the public's money at a time when public approval of Congress is lower than ever."

In their defense, Congress worked fewer hours in 2008 than in 2007. Phew!
Jerk Harry Reid: Dubya is "worst president" for trying to save us from fiscal oblivion

I'd like to use stronger language but my kids read this blog sometimes. Actually, I force them to read it to pump up my traffic.

The Senate majority leader was on "Meet the Press" this morning where he managed to make an ass of himself on questions ranging from the Burris nomination to the war in Iraq as an exasperated David Gregory tried to pin him down. When asked if he stood behind his statement that Dubya was the "worst president ever" Reid used the Popeye Defense by saying "I am what I am" (whatever that means.) But when pressed to qualify the statement, Reid immediately jumped on President Bush's attempt to "destroy Social Security" and Medicare.

I'm still getting over a cold so thank heaven that Rob at Say Anything has filled in the rest:

So because Bush tried to fix the two biggest domestic threats facing this country - run-away spending on Social Security and Medicare - he’s the worst President in history?

With Democrats in charge again I doubt we’ll see any progress toward fixing those programs, but that doesn’t mean hacks like Reid get to conveniently forget just how much of a problem they represent. For all the carping we do about government spending on things like the war in Iraq and Congressional pay and bailouts, it’s worth remembering that we spend over $1 trillion a year on entitlements in this country, and Social Security and Medicare represent the largest chunks of that spending.

That $1 trillion, in fact, is more than the rest of the world (including us) spends on all the war and all the military that exists.

That’s a problem, and I’ll never accuse any President of being a bad leader for trying to rein that in.
Here's a relevant graph by the Congressional Budget Office:

In 1950, the government outlays were essentially the Interstate Highway System, aircraft carriers, and interest on the debt to win World War II. Our near-future presents an American government that spends nearly every tax dollar on entitlement spending. What say you, non-partisan Congressional Budget Office?

According to the projected path for the budget shown in this report, outlays for Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid (based on the current rules for benefits) would nearly double again as a share of GDP by 2035, rising to 15 percent. If spending for all other government activities in 2035 remained roughly the same share of GDP as projected for 2012 (7 percent), Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid would account for almost 70 percent of all noninterest expenditures. By 2050, outlays for the three programs would equal 17 percent of GDP and by 2075, 21 percent--exceeding the share of GDP now absorbed by all federal revenues.
I can't believe Bush tried to do something about that! Well, good luck to you Harry Reid, because it's all in the Democrats' laps now. And no whining when the Republicans demagogue the issue for political gain; they know a winning strategy when they see it, right?

Extra - Bitsblog: "Dirty Harry Reid, dumber than a brick"

Saturday, January 03, 2009

There they go - Fox News: "Israeli Ground Forces Cross Border Into Gaza Strip"

Related - Mark Steyn "Gaza has its version of rocket scientists": "Over in Gaza, whether or not they're putting the Christ back in Christmas, they're certainly putting the crucifixion back in Easter. According to the London-based Arabic newspaper al Hayat, on Dec. 23 Hamas legislators voted to introduce Sharia – Islamic law – to the Palestinian territories, including crucifixion. So next time you're visiting what my childhood books still quaintly called "the Holy Land" the re-enactments might be especially lifelike."

More - Gateway Pundit is on the job with the latest. So is Memeorandum.

Friday, January 02, 2009

Americans say "no" to Potterville – Despite the lure of jobs and "economic development" most states are turning their back to casino gambling. This past March, the Massachusetts state legislature rebuffed Governor Deval Patrick's attempt to bring easy money to the Bay State. It looks like Plan "B" is to beg Obama for a bailout.
Harry Reid as George Wallace, standing in the Senate doorway

What a mess Blago has created, and what a plan: CNN "Democrats have plan if Burris shows up"

The aide familiar with Senate Democratic leaders' plans said if Burris tries to enter the Senate chamber, the Senate doorkeeper will stop Burris. If Burris were to persist, either trying to force his way onto the Senate floor or refusing to leave and causing a scene, U.S. Capitol Police would stop him, said the aide.
I couldn't find a source online, but I'm reminded of a scene in the original "Walking Tall" where Sheriff Buford Pusser can't get rid of a corrupt judge but he can exercise his authority as sheriff to designate facilities for elected officials. He moves the judge's desk into the men's bathroom.

Extra - Polipundit: "Let's get physical"

Thursday, January 01, 2009

Happy New Year - I'm sick with a fever, cough, and congestion. At least I have a couple days off work to recover.

Boston Globe: "Nine wishes for 2009"