Friday, September 28, 2007

Hillary's birth bonds

I can't find a link to it yet, but earlier today, I caught a clip on TV in which Hillary Clinton discussed a $5,000 government endowment (for lack of a better term) for each child born. Theoretically, the money would be held in some type of account until the child reached the age of 18, when the money (plus 18 years of interest, presumably) could be used for the child's higher educational needs.

Based on facts from the CIA's world fact book on America's birth rates, I put this at around $21.3 billion (the news report on TV said $20 billion...close enough).

On the surface, $21.3 billion annually sounds like a reasonable amount to invest in our nation's educational future. But that just covers the actual hard dollars to be paid out by the taxpayers to fund the program. Do you really think that a Democrat-controlled government would just give every new parent $5,000 of THEIR money to hold in escrow until their kid turned 18? You silly can't be trusted with that!

No, this would require a whole new bureaucracy be created, probably under the already dysfunctional and incompetent Department of Education. Then, additional funds would have to be flowed to every state's department of education to manage the program. Figure on something closer to $100 billion. Annually.

Back to the drawing board, Comrade Hillary.

Update: Finally found a link...there are plenty of them if one just uses the right search words.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

When parody becomes reality

The following could have been pulled from today's news pages covering a San Francisco street fair, an advertisement for which parodies Da Vinci's last supper painting:
"I'd always thought gays were regular people, just like you and me, and that the stereotype of homosexuals as hedonistic, sex-crazed deviants was just a destructive myth," said mother of four Hannah Jarrett, 41, mortified at the sight of 17 tanned and oiled boys cavorting in jock straps to a throbbing techno beat on a float shaped like an enormous phallus. "Boy, oh, boy, was I wrong."
But it's not. It's from a 2001 article in The Onion, a parody news site, entitled Gay-Pride Parade Sets Mainstream Acceptance Of Gays Back 50 Years.

Is the gay community that tone deaf, or do they just not care?

George Soros' tentacles

I knew that George Soros was a big financial backer of, but I really had no idea just how influential and widespread his reach is until I read this series of articles in Investor's Business Daily. Here are a few excerpts to whet your appetite:

From The Soros Threat to Democracy
George Soros is known for funding groups such as that seek to manipulate public opinion. So why is the billionaire's backing of what he believes in problematic? In a word: transparency.

How many people, for instance, know that James Hansen, a man billed as a lonely "NASA whistleblower" standing up to the mighty U.S. government, was really funded by Soros' Open Society Institute , which gave him "legal and media advice"?

[ ... ]

That's not the only case. Didn't the mainstream media report that 2006's vast immigration rallies across the country began as a spontaneous uprising of 2 million angry Mexican-flag waving illegal immigrants demanding U.S. citizenship in Los Angeles, egged on only by a local Spanish-language radio announcer?

Turns out that wasn't what happened, either. Soros' OSI had money-muscle there, too, through its $17 million Justice Fund. The fund lists 19 projects in 2006. One was vaguely described involvement in the immigration rallies. Another project funded illegal immigrant activist groups for subsequent court cases.

[ ... ]

Soros' "shaping public policies," as OSI calls it, is not illegal. But it's a problem for democracy because it drives issues with cash and then only lets the public know about it after it's old news.

That means the public makes decisions about issues without understanding the special agendas of groups behind them.
From George Soros: The Man, The Mind And The Money Behind MoveOn
Soros says he gives away about $400 million annually.

It's an admirable picture, but "philanthropy" may be the wrong word. Unlike, say, Bill Gates, who really does put the bulk of his charity into helping the world's poor through medical services, Soros tends to fund pressure groups and foundations he misleadingly characterizes as promoting "civil society" and "democracy."

The image gives him moral cover to manipulate democracies whose voter verdicts he opposes.

The first groups Soros supported back in the 1980s did play a role in undercutting the rickety communist regimes of Eastern Europe. But his motives seemed less than idealistic. All Soros groups tend to tear down tyrannies rather than build up democracies.

And since 2003, tearing down what he views as the "fascist" tyranny of the United States, as he has put it, is "the central focus of my life."
From A Party Bought And Paid For once crowed that it had bought and owned the Democratic Party. With the Senate now blasting its tactics, that's an open question. But not, apparently, for Democrats running for president.

The Senate voted 72-25 on Wednesday to stand up for the integrity of America's leading military field commander, Gen. David Petraeus.

[ ... ]

The Senate's nonbinding resolution was simple enough: It expressed "full support" for the general returning from the field of battle and "strongly" condemned "personal attacks on the honor and integrity of General Petraeus and all members of the United States Armed Forces." Given that they voted 81-0 to confirm him less than a year earlier, it was a reasonable gesture.

MoveOn's ad disgusted average Americans across the country. Even the Democrat-dominated Senate couldn't halt a vote to condemn it. A quarter of the Senate, however, did refuse to condemn the attacks, and curiously, that included all Senate Democrats who seek to become the military's next commander in chief.

Sens. Hillary Clinton and Christopher Dodd voted against the symbolic measure. Sens. Joe Biden and Barack Obama had other things to do that day and abstained from voting.
Read 'em all.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Did Saddam offer to go quietly for $1B?

A report in the Daily Mail claims that shortly before the invasion of Iraq, Saddam Hussein offered to go quietly into exchange for a billion dollars.
The extraordinary offer was revealed yesterday in a transcript of talks in February 2003 between George Bush and the then Spanish Prime Minister Jose Maria Aznar at the President's Texas ranch.

The White House refused to comment on the report last night.

But, if verified, it is certain to raise questions in Washington and London over whether the costly four-year war could have been averted.
The possibilities are mind-boggling, but only under certain conditions. For example, what did Saddam offer as a replacement? Uday and Qusay? Would he have simply left a vacuum, resulting in the very same mess we're trying to clean up now?

It's an interesting game of what-if. But that's all it is...and even then, only if it's true.

Update: I don't know how I missed this the first time around, but this paragraph would seem to bolster intelligence estimates on Iraq's WMD programs before the war:
"It seems he's indicated he would be prepared to go into exile if he's allowed to take $1billion and all the information he wants about weapons of mass destruction."

The dog with the big dick strikes back

In an effort to "stimulate debate about religion and freedom of expression" after the Mohammed-as-a-dog fiasco in Sweden, artist Stig Ramsing has produced a sculpture depicting Jesus as a dog with huge schwanz.
The artwork showed Jesus as a dog with a bloodstained head under a crown of thorns and an "enormous sexual organ", according to Swedish press agency TT.
I simply must find a picture of this.

Is it the profession, or those that are attracted to it?

Yet another study, this time in Sweden, blows the lid off the shocking secret that journalists lean farther to the left than the public forced to consume their drivel.
The Green Party, Left Party and Liberal Party were more favoured by journalists than the Moderates and Social Democrats, the largest parties in the country as a whole. The large parties have been under-represented since journalists' political views were first canvassed in Sweden in 1989.
But there's one key difference between Swedish journalists and their American counterparts...
Perhaps unsurprisingly, talking politics is a favourite pastime. 68 percent of the nation's scribes have a conversation about politics at least once a week, compared to 25 percent of the population as a whole. Journalists also have greater trust in politicians than the general public.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Voter ID laws: What's the big deal?

I was at the Marriott Hotel in Alpharetta, Georgia a few years back ordering a beer at the lobby bar. Upon being asked for proof of age, I produced my driver's license and with a smirk, said "I've been 21 twice now." The bartender smiled apologetically and explained that it was a local law, and every customer had to show proof of age regardless of how old he looked. I shrugged it off. No big deal.

Today the Supreme Court agreed to hear the case of Indiana's voter ID law, which requires anyone showing up to vote to present positive identification. The law has already been upheld by a federal judge and the 7th US Circuit Court of Appeals.

Now to me, a law requiring a prospective voter to show identification seems perfectly reasonable, in fact, I find it somewhat shocking that it's not a universal practice. I mean, c'mon...ensuring the integrity of our elections is just a tad more important than getting a beer in Alpharetta. But sadly the Democrats don't see it that way.
The state Democratic party and civil rights groups complained that the law unfairly targets poor and minority voters, without any evidence that in-person voter fraud exists in Indiana. The party argued that those voters tend to be Democrats.
The point isn't (or at least, shouldn't be) whether voter fraud exists in Indiana. The point is to make sure that it doesn't. But where's the evidence that poor and minority voters lack proper identification in such numbers that this is really a problem for them? Why is this seen as such an onerous burden on these groups that the requirement disenfranchises them in significant numbers?

This is like Russia's protests over the planned European missile defense system. If you don't plan on launching missiles against Europe, what's the big deal? Likewise with the Dems...if you don't plan on committing mass voter fraud by hauling a bunch of proxies to the polls, what's the big deal?

The Democrats doth protest too much, methinks.

Red Sox watch

Magic Number: 5

How did it come to this? We've clinched a playoff spot, but the division title should have been sewn up at least a week ago.

Between their September collapse and Ahmadinejad's visit to the US, I'm gonna have to go on blood pressure medication.

Pelley's '60 Minutes' interview with Ahmadinejad has left seething

I posted that link yesterday to the dKos reader who was stricken with a case of the vapors over Scott Pelley's rough handling of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad on 60 Minutes Sunday night. Now it seems "Richard Cranium" (but you can call him "Dick Head") isn't the only one who thinks Scott Pelley is a dummy for Dick Cheney's ventriloquism.

A visitor to this blog last night arrived by way of a Google search. What were the search words? Take a look:

So it seems that either there's an Internet petition circulating demanding that Scott Pelley be fired, or this visitor was hoping to find one. It's a safe bet that if such a petition doesn't exist now, it will soon. Expect the grounds to be propagandizing for the White House, journalistic malfeasance or something along those lines, when in reality all Pelley did was break with mainstream journalism and try to corner Ahmadinejad with some tough questions.

These days, the left isn't happy if a reporter does anything less than perform journalistic fellatio when interviewing the world's worst dictators.

Monday, September 24, 2007

It's Mahmoud Monday

Today's the day America's Democrats, barking moonbats, leftist whackademics and Islamist Freakazoids have been eagerly anticipating: Iran's president and terror mastermind Mahmoud Ahmadinejad takes New York City by storm.

I'm too demoralized to link all the articles I've seen, but this Daily Kos post (courtesy of LGF) just stands out as a shining example of what's wrong with the Democrats and how completely unhinged they've become.
I am sitting here absolutely stunned after watching the 60 Minutes interview with Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

Reporter Scott Pelley was unbelievably scary in asking the questions he asked.

At the moment, I’m at a loss for words, but if you watched it, and were as stunned as I was, please let me know. I need a sanity check.

I’m going to have to wait for a transcript, but here’s what immediately scared me:

* Pelley’s “questions” (allegedly from George Bush) [Alleged by WHOM?? --ed.]
* Pelley’s declarations that the U.S. had “proof of Iran firing missiles at Americans in Iraq”
* Pelley’s assertations [sic] that “Iran is providing material support to Iraq insurgents. We have proof. What do you say?” ... or something like that. Very close.

It was a masterful Goebel-esque performance by 60 Minutes on behalf of Dick Cheney.

I’m telling you, it was scary beyond belief.
I've got visions of this idiot sitting at his computer, quivering and weeping over poor Mahmoud Ahmadinejad being bullied by CBS reporter Scott Pelley. But all snickering aside, what can be so profoundly wrong with an entire group of people that they would deny all evidence to the contrary and believe a terrorist leader over independently verified US reports of Iran's meddling in Iraq?

It would be easy to dismiss this as lunatic fringe raving if it wasn't for the fact that the dKos community has become the face of the Democratic party. Knowing this, who in their right mind could possibly vote for a Democrat?

Seasonal philosophical bullshit

As summer gives way to fall, I thought I'd offer up a passage from Chinese author and inventor Lin Yutang. I've taken the liberty of subtly modifying it, though. See if you can find the's very subtle.
I like spring, but it is too young. I like summer, but it is too proud. So I like best of all autumn, because its tone is mellower, its colors are richer, and it is tinged with a little sorrow. Its golden richness speaks not of the innocence of spring, nor the power of summer, but of the mellowness and kindly wisdom of approaching age. It knows the limitations of life and it is content. But winter just sucks.

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Photo of the year

What can one say about this that the photo doesn't already? This is American airport security today: A Catholic nun being frisked at the airport by a Muslim.

Hat tip: Hot Air headlines

Thursday, September 20, 2007

The conquest of Europe

While the growing number of Europeans concerned over the Islamization of Europe are smeared as bigots, the Islamization continues at breakneck speed. All the following news items came from today.

VB: "Stop Islamisation"
1,000 "holy war veterans" in Belgium

Zawahiri calls for 'cleansing' Maghreb of France

Call for imams to undergo integration course

Asians wait in Guinea to sail to Spain

'Final response' from Iran promised in October

I'm not sure what the question was, but whatever it is, some Islamist Freakazoid in Iran has promised us a response to it in October. On the 12th, to be exact.
Iran pledged to deliver a "final reponse" to the U.S and other supporters of Israel during a religious ceremony next month, the Islamic Republic News Agency reported Thursday.

Iranian government spokesman Gholam-Hossein Elham said the message would be sent on Qods Day, held each year on the last Friday of Ramadan, and would arrive during a visit to the Palestinian territories by Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice.
Mark your calendar.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Now THAT'S a dialog

For months, the Democratic party leadership have been advocating, and at times engaging in, dialog with Iran and Syria. Meanwhile, Iran and Syria have been having their own little 'dialog'.
Proof of cooperation between Iran and Syria in the proliferation and development of weapons of mass destruction was brought to light Monday in Jane's Defence Weekly, which reported that dozens of Iranian engineers and 15 Syrian officers were killed in a July 23 accident in Syria.

According to the report, cited by Channel 10, the joint Syrian-Iranian team was attempting to mount a chemical warhead on a Scud missile when the explosion occurred, spreading lethal chemical agents, including sarin nerve gas.
I think it'd be a bit difficult to chat while choking on sarin fumes.

'This is why we fight'

"Bumps in the road are now officially seen as more hazardous than insurgents and terrorists in Ramadi."
If you haven't already seen Michael Totten's report on what's going on in the once war-torn Iraqi province of Anbar, read it. This tiny snippet (it's a long article) says it all:
“This place has made an amazing turnaround,” he [Marine Lieutenant Jonathan Welch] said. “Everyone knew about Ramadi. It was another Fallujah, but it was worse than Fallujah. I did not want to come here. I was supposed to have an easy deployment in Karbala. Most guys coming out here were looking forward to combat. Not me. I had already done it. If you told me a few months ago what it would be like now I wouldn’t believe it. A little while ago we went to a soccer game. Lieutenant Tierney put it together. They have sixteen soccer teams now. We bought them uniforms, balls, water for the field, everything. They had a huge opening ceremony. Hundreds of people were there. It was incredible. Just incredible. It was a real storybook turnaround. This is why we fight. This is why what we do is worth doing. This is what makes the sacrifices, like Lieutenant Hightower having metal enter his body, worthwhile.

Lieutenant Hightower was standing right next to us when Lieutenant Welch said that. He was hit with an IED a few months ago. Pieces of shrapnel tore up his leg. He nodded at what Lieutenant Welch said, agreeing that getting “blown up,” as Welch put it, was worth it.

“That is the most encouraging thing,” he said, “seeing American Soldiers at soccer games at a stadium that recently was used as a graveyard.”
When organizations like MoveOn issue a smear against Gen. Petraeus calling him a liar and a traitor, and Democratic presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton says his report requires "willing suspension of disbelief", you've got to figure he was telling the truth, and the subversive Democratic party didn't like it one bit.

The concerted efforts by the Democrats to discredit Gen. Petraeus started back at the end of July, when Rep. James Clyburn (D-SC) stated that a positive report by Petraeus would be a "real big problem" for the Democrats.

Read, and draw your own conclusions.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Happy 60th, USAF!

I just got an e-mail from my Dad reminding me that the US Air Force is turning 60 years old. And it dawns on me that I served the AF for nearly half of its existence.

Pass the Depends, please.

Dan Rather: Shill for Airbus?

Dan Rather is set to air an exposé on the dangers of the new Boeing 787. According to Rather's report:
Boeing Co's new carbon-composite 787 Dreamliner plane may turn out to be unsafe and could lead to more deaths in crashes, according to a report by veteran journalist Dan Rather to be broadcast in the United States on Tuesday.

The new plane, which is mostly made from brittle carbon compounds rather than flexible aluminum, is more likely to shatter on impact and may emit poisonous chemicals when ignited, Rather will report based on interviews with a former Boeing engineer and various industry experts, according to a transcript of the show.

Boeing is kicking Airbus's ass in new airplane orders. I wonder if Dan "Fake but accurate" Rather has gotten a check from Airbus recently.

Get 'em while they're young

Venezuela's president and Absolute Supreme Dictator For Life, Hugo Chavez, wants more young minds to mold.
President Hugo Chavez threatened on Monday to take over any private schools refusing to submit to the oversight of his socialist government, a move some Venezuelans fear will impose leftist ideology in the classroom. [No...say it ain't so! --ed.]

All Venezuelan schools, both public and private, must submit to state inspectors enforcing the new educational system. Those that refuse will be closed and nationalized, Chavez said.

A new curriculum will be phased in during this school year, and new textbooks are being developed to help educate "the new citizen," [What's he going to do with "the old citizens"? --ed.] added Chavez's brother and education minister Adan Chavez in their televised ceremony on the first day of classes.
It will take Venezuela decades to recover from the damage this buffoon is wreaking.

Monday, September 17, 2007

Greenspan clarifies war for oil claim

Apparently not wanting to throw completely in with, International ANSWER and Code Pink, former Fed chairman Alan Greenspan gave additional color to the claim in his new book that the Iraq war was about oil.
Clarifying a controversial comment in his new memoir, former Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan said he told the White House before the Iraq war that removing Saddam Hussein was "essential" to secure world oil supplies, according to an interview published on Monday.

Greenspan, who wrote in his memoir that "the Iraq War is largely about oil," said in a Washington Post interview that while securing global oil supplies was "not the administration's motive," he had presented the White House before the 2003 invasion with the case for why removing the then-Iraqi leader was important for the global economy.

"I was not saying that that's the administration's motive," Greenspan said in the interview conducted on Saturday. "I'm just saying that if somebody asked me, 'Are we fortunate in taking out Saddam?' I would say it was essential."
I've been telling anyone who'll listen that if there was nothing but sand in the Middle East, we wouldn't give a crap what happened there. But since there's sand and the world's biggest oil supply, we have an economic interest in keeping that oil flowing.

And the rest of the world has an economic interest in helping out, or at least staying the hell out of our way while we do it.


Two Muslim organizations in Europe have issued a "counter-fatwa", saying it would be against Islam to kill Lars Vilks, the Swedish artist who drew a picture depicting Mohammed as a dog.
Two leading European Muslim organizations have condemned the threats issued by al-Qaeda in Iraq on the lives of Swedish artist Lars Vilks and newspaper editor Ulf Johansson.

The Dublin-based European Council for Fatwa and Research labelled the death sentence haram, or prohibited by the Islamic faith, and said it planned to issue a counter-fatwa.
Meanwhile, Swedish authorities appear to have doubts as to the efficacy of the counter-fatwa. Police there have forced Mr. Vilks to go into hiding.
Police have told Swedish artist Lars Vilks that it is not safe for him to remain at his home in southern Sweden following threats on his life from an al-Qaeda front organization in Iraq.

The artist behind a controversial caricature of the Muslim prophet Muhammad was only allowed access to his home outside Nyhamnsläge after police had conducted a thorough search on Monday morning.

Police allowed the artist to pick up a few belongings but told him that they did not want him staying there in the foreseeable future.

Friday, September 14, 2007

Never enough

Just one simpleton's observation here. When President Bush announced the other day, on the basis of General Petraeus's report, a planned withdrawal of 30,000 troops, the Democrats were quick to pronounce that the withdrawal was "not enough".

Not enough for what? A speedy American defeat? A complete American surrender in time for the 2008 general elections?

Somebody, please, throw me a bone here. I'm confused.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

'Family discount'

This is a dog bites man story, really, so I guess it shouldn't come as a shock that the New York Times gave a 60% discount on their despicable "General Betray Us" ad.
Citing the shared liberal bent of the group and the Times, one Republican aide on Capitol Hill speculated that it was the "family discount."

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

What if...

I'm not one for maudlin memorializing, but I can't let the sixth anniversary of the 9/11 attacks go without note.

So, here's a picture a buddy sent me today, which makes me wonder if we should require good, law-abiding passengers to fly armed instead of prohibiting it.

Remember...and nurture your anger.

We win, they lose

I'm on the road again this week with not much time to post, but I saw this petition this morning, and it's definitely worth your attention.

A picture worth 1,000 words

If there ever was a picture succinctly depicting what's wrong with the Democrats, this is it.

I don't know how Zombie does it. Day after day, slogging through the Bay Area moonbattery. It's got to be tough on the soul. But Zombie provides a valuable service...I lifted this image from the latest Zombie photo essay, which is a must-see as always.

Sunday, September 09, 2007

The Clinton-China connection

I'm beginning to wonder if Bill and Hillary Clinton are products of a cloning experiment gone partly wrong. Wrong in the sense that they're not identical in appearance, but right in that they appear to have the same reptilian brain.

The Clinton administration was dogged by allegations, rumors and innuendo over an apparent causal relationship between donations to the Democratic party and technology transfers to China. When Clinton transferred approval authority for technology sales from the State department to the Department of Commerce, sensitive technology flowed from the US to China like cocaine from Columbia. Commerce secretary Ron Brown's untimely death and the unusual circumstances surrounding that death did little to quiet down some of the more serious suspicions.

With Hillary's run for the Democratic nomination for President, we're treated to the second half of the Clinton-China connection. At Hot Air, Allahpundit says of the Norman Hsu scandal, "I’m thinking we haven’t yet scratched the surface of how awesome this scandal is." Yes, quite.

Given that none of Hsu's business interests appear to exist anywhere but on paper, where's all the disposable income he has for political contributions coming from? Further, how is it that someone politically passionate enough to contribute so much may have never registered to vote?

I'm not normally given to conspiracy theories, but I won't be surprised if Hsu conveniently dies or disappears right around the time the source of his deep pockets is traced to Chinese national interests. So, here's an easy question: What exactly is it about the Democrats, particularly the Clintons, that the commies in China love so much?

Saturday, September 08, 2007

Shameless plug for the gift shop

I was pretty satisfied with these images I patched together, which are now available at The Pool Bar Gift Shop on shirts, mugs, bumper stickers, etc.

I came up with this one just today when I heard yet another Democrat (does it matter which one?) undermining our efforts in Iraq:

And this one's available in a couple of different forms after I had to take down the anti-Che products:

Friday, September 07, 2007

My wife no longer does Windows

I rarely post anything about technology here, which is odd since I'm a bit of a gadget freak and have been in the IT business for over 25 years. But I'll make an exception here.

When it came time this week to build a new PC for my wife, I was faced with the choice of plunking down a large chunk of change for Windows Vista, or going the free(!) Linux route. After asking around, it sounded like the Ubuntu Linux distribution was a good alternative, so I decided to give it a try.

I've got to say, I'm sold. More importantly, so is my wife.

First, I had to get my hands on the Ubuntu bits. No problem...I went to and downloaded the 7.04, otherwise known as "Feisty Fawn". My one complaint so far is the cutesy-poo names they give each release. The download came as a 700MB ISO image, so it fit nicely onto a single writable CD. So far so good.

I stuck the disc into the laptop, and booted it. At this point, I had the option of just running Ubuntu from the CD, or installing to the laptop's hard drive. I selected the install, and in under 10 minutes I was booting from the hard drive. The installation process was as simple as could be with a minimum of questions asked.

When the system came up, I saw that the OS recognized both the wired and the wireless Ethernet interfaces, but the WiFi interface simply wouldn't work. No problem...I plugged into my wired network and fired up the web browser to start searching the many Ubuntu forums for help. I eventually located a thread that had simple and clear step-by-step instructions for fixing the problem, which I learned everyone with the Broadcom BCM43xx chipset encounters. The problem is related to a licensing issue which prohibits anyone from distributing the device driver with the firmware, which is required in order for the card to operate.

After following the instructions to download the firmware and installing something frighteningly called a "firmware cutter", I had the WiFi interface working as advertised. At this point, it was all over but the shouting. See ya, Microsoft.

Next thing I had to do was get my wife's stuff moved from her old laptop to this one. I figured this would be a real ass-ache, but no. Since Ubuntu comes with everything it needs to work on a Windows network, I was able to copy everything over the network from the old laptop with no real effort. Now for her e-mail.

My wife used Outlook Express on the old system, and here's where I had to expend a little bit of effort, and again where some of the online forums came to the rescue. First, I installed Mozilla Thunderbird to her old laptop, which immediately offered the option of sucking all her account settings, address book entries and e-mail into Thunderbird. That done, I copied the new Thunderbird directory to a USB stick and stuck it into the new laptop. I copied the contents into her user home directory, modified the profile to use the new files and fired up Thunderbird. Done.

After that, it was a simple matter of copying over her Internet Explorer bookmarks and pulling them into Firefox on the new laptop. She's been using Ubuntu for a couple days now and has no complaints.

Ubuntu comes with OpenOffice, which handles MSOffice files with no problem that I've seen so far. It's also got a pretty full complement of multimedia software for music (though I had to get an MP3 decoder...more licensing nonsense), and just about everything else for every day use.

Now, if I can just find a version of Turbo Tax that runs on Linux...

Hostile work environment

A few days ago, Hot Air had this item describing an interview the Boston Globe did with Geraldo Rivera. At one point in the interview, Rivera says of Michelle Malkin "I'd spit on her I saw her."

It occurs to me that both Rivera and Ms. Malkin work at Fox News. Doesn't Fox, like every other employer, have standards of workplace conduct? Do Rivera's words not make for a "hostile work environment"?

Hey, Rupert Murdoch...Fire Rivera now!

Norwegian diplomats fret over Israel's Palestinian prisoners

The hand-wringing bed-wetters that staff Norway's embassy in Tel Aviv have filed a report expressing concern over the treatment of Palestinians in Israel's prisons. Naturally, there are allegations of torture.
The Norwegian embassy staff is worried about how the Israelis treat Palestinian prisoners, reported Norwegian Broadcasting (NRK) on Thursday.

In a report stamped "secret" and sent to ministry officials back home, they're asking ministry officials in Oslo to take up torture concerns with their Israeli counterparts. NRK obtained a copy of the report.

The embassy report is in turn based on two independent reports compiled by a organizations that have interviewed Palestinian prisoners in Israeli prisons. The reports cite "severe pain" inflicted upon the prisoners through beatings during questioning.
Now, I'm not naive enough to think that the Israelis are engaging in anything less than, shall we say, robust questioning of pigs that launch kassam rockets at nursery schools, but allegations of actual torture are straight out of the captured jihadi's playbook. They know how that plays with the hand-wringing bed-wetter crowd.

Thursday, September 06, 2007

Steve Fossett: Most important man in America

Now, before someone excoriates me for being callous, crass and insensitive, let me be clear that I'm a fan of Steve Fossett and his aviation accomplishments. He's a great American in the classic sense, and I hope he's located safe and sound after going missing over the Nevada desert.

But let's be real. Does anybody think that if it was some every day shlub in their private plane who went missing there would be all this effort to locate him? As I type this, there's a press briefing going on describing the status of the search. There are literally squadrons of aircraft combing Nevada for the guy, from the Nevada Air and Army National Guard, state and local police, and the Civil Air Patrol. And the search area has just been expanded to ten thousand square miles.

As Allahpundit at Hot Air would say: "Better than you."

Choosing a horse

It's always amusing to go back and look at things I've previously written. Back in February, I had a post with the same title as this one. I generally avoid making predictions, and for good's what I predicted in February:
I suspect that Obama, Biden and Edwards will be out of the running pretty early on, and the race for the nomination will come down to Comrade Hillary and (wait for it!)...Al Gore. Yes, that single biggest contributor to anthropogenic global warming by virtue of his own hot air, Gore will enter the race. I'll go out on a limb now and predict that he'll get the nomination. Remember you heard it here first.
Sure, there's still time for Obama and Edwards to be "out of the running pretty early on", but I now doubt that'll be the case, at least for Obama. Biden looks like he's toast, so at least in baseball terms, I'm batting .333 which is pretty good if I'm David 'Papi' Ortiz, but I'm not. It's a crappy average if you're a political analyst, so it's a good thing I'm not one of those either. And it doesn't look like Gore's entering the race any time soon, so *bzzzzzt* wrong again.

Some recent poll numbers for you:

But I'm not really here to talk about Democrats, anyway. In the absence of any sudden traumatic brain injury, I'm not voting for any of them. Let's talk about the Republican candidates.

McCain: I still kind of like the guy, but his patented Maverick-ness has him plunking a discordant tune with most right-of-center voters like myself.

Huckabee: I started to think of Mike Huckabee as a bit of a dark horse with much appeal. I even wrote a positive post on him about a month ago. But as it turns out, Huckabee's a nanny stater. A word of warning to Republican candidates: leave the nanny statism at home. It's not gonna play well at the national level, even with most Democrats.

Romney: While he seems a bit too polished and slick for my taste (he's got the Republican version of John Edwards' hair style), I've yet to see any reason of substance to not support him.

Giuliani: I've liked Giuliani for a long time, and all the crap about his personal life is just that--crap. I'm hesitant about him simply because of his wobbly second amendment stance.

Thompson (Fred): Since he only officially entered the race last night, we've not heard much more from him than broad generalities. While I was excited about Fred early on, his little game of hard to get coupled with his staff instability has me a bit, well, less excited. Now that he's in it for real, I'll watch and reserve judgment for the time being.

And, just for you Ron Paul fans, some recent poll numbers for the Republican candidates:

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Che Guevara: capitalist pig

So I spent a bunch of time preparing this image (and a similar one), putting it up on Cafe Press, then arranging the images on various shirts and stickers for sale at The Pool Bar Gift Shop. But guess what? Cafe Press pulled them over copyright concerns! Yes, Che Guevara, well his survivors at least, are protecting Che's profitability.

Indeed, after doing a lot of poking around, it appears that an Atlanta-based clothing company may have purchased the rights to the image. In any event, there are sufficient questions over the copyrights that I don't want to mess with it.

I guess I'll have to work on a different design.

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

France hails...Hugo Chavez

The French may despise America and George W. Bush in particular, but they just love Venezuela's Cartoon Character-in-Chief Hugo Chavez. Well, they're hailing him, anyway.
France Monday hailed the efforts of Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez to secure the release of 45 hostages held by the Colombian rebel group FARC, including the French-Colombian politician Ingrid Betancourt.

"We salute the efforts of President Chavez to help conclude a humanitarian accord," said foreign ministry spokeswoman Pascale Andreani. "We urge the FARC to make the necessary moves to allow the hostages in Colombia to be released without delay."

She said France "noted with great interest" the announcements made following Chavez's talks in Colombia with President Alvaro Uribe on Friday.

The two leaders agreed to allow a representative of the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) to meet with Chavez in Venezuela to discuss the exchange of 45 rebel hostages -- including Betancourt -- for 500 FARC members in government jails.
Of course the commie terrorists of FARC would meet with Chavez...professional courtesy, don't you know.

Monday, September 03, 2007

Purported lock of dead commie's hair to be auctioned

A Cuban exile and former CIA operative has plans to auction off a lock of hair he claims came from the head of Che Guevara. If it's authentic, I'd buy it, then extract the DNA and clone him so I could kill him again.

If only I had the money. And if only the science existed.

Good intentions

Sweden's got a serious problem with unassimilated Muslim immigrants, so maybe Swedish authorities can get a pass this once for going a bit overboard in trying to prevent (or at least detect) female genital mutilation.
A girl was forced by Swedish social workers to undergo a gynaecological examination simply because her parents were Somalian, Sweden's Discrimination Ombudsman has ruled.

The social workers forced the girl, 11, to submit to the examination to see whether she had been subjected to genital mutilation (circumcision). The girl was collected by police from school shortly after returning from a visit to relatives in Kenya.
FGM is one of the uglier "traditions" practiced by some Islamic cultures, second only to honor killing. Countries with large number of adherents to dark ages traditions should be doing all they can to prevent it. But maybe grabbing kids for random gynecological exams isn't the best method.

Happy Labor Day

As holidays go, I'm not crazy about Labor Day. Oh sure, it's appropriate having a day to honor the nation's workers, of which I'm one. At least I assume white-collar workers are included. But I have a few problems with it. For instance:
  • There's the whiff of communism ("Workers of the world , unite!")
  • It's a sign of the end of Summer
  • It signals the start of school (even at my age, that thought still fills me with loathing)
I guess if Labor Day was moved back to some time in August, I'd have two less reasons to be so decidedly unenthusiastic about the holiday. And come to think of it, August needs a three-day weekend.

But then, any day that gives me an excuse to fire up the grill and drink beer can't be all bad.

Sunday, September 02, 2007

The Pool Bar Gift Shop is now open

After wanting to get bumper stickers and t-shirts that nobody seemed to be making, I decided to make my own over at Cafe Press. When I found out I could make stuff and sell it, I figured what the hell...maybe someone else might like this crap. Selections are limited now, but rest assured it'll grow.

So, head over to The Pool Bar Gift Shop and look around. Christmas is right around the corner!

Udo Ulfkotte: Takin' one for the team

Actually, the title of this post puts it too mildly. Dr. Udo Ulfkotte, a German professor and journalist, is living a Kafkaesque existence for speaking out on and exposing the extent of the Islamist threat within Germany and the rest of Europe.

The article is far too lengthy to quote here meaningfully, so please, PLEASE go read the whole thing at the link. It's got it all...libel tourism, inept government and persecution of anti-Jihad citizens.

Red Sox watch

Magic Number: 22

Yes, even though the Evil Empire swept us in NY this week and we dropped one to Baltimore, we're still in first place by five games. Then last night, rookie Clay Buchholz no-hits the Orioles. Sweet.

Can this really be happening in September?

Saturday, September 01, 2007

'Can you explain this to me?'

Quote of day week month year:
"I do not understand why I have to defend myself. When one million people take to the streets in Turkey no-one says: These people are extremists who protest against the Islamization of Turkey. No-one would dream of saying a thing like that. But if the same thing happens here, in the heart of Europe, they say: These people are extremists. Can you explain this to me?"

--Udo Ulfkotte, organizer of the banned SIOE anti-Islamization demonstration
Hat tip: Brussels Journal

Malaysia continues slide into Sharia abyss

It'll be a damned shame if it happens. I visited Malaysia this past January, and it's quite a nice country. The people there are very friendly and hospitable, but I don't see that attitude surviving imposition of Sharia law, not when 40% of the citizens aren't ethnic Malay and are therefore non-Muslim. And I suspect a fair number of the ethnic Malays are opposed to Sharia law, as well.
Hardline Islamic law could be introduced across Malaysia under reforms proposed by the country's chief justice.

As the nation in south-east Asia celebrated 50 years of independence from Britain yesterday, its government was preparing to discuss a plan that would revolutionise the legal system put in place by its former colonial administrators.

[ ... ]

Ahmad Fairuz, the chief justice, told an Islamic conference in Kuala Lumpur that 50 years of independence had failed to free Malaysia from the "clutches of colonialism". [If by "clutches of colonialism" you mean "freedom of religion". --ed.] Sharia law should be "infused" into the gaps created by abolishing common law, he said.

Malaysia's non-Muslim Chinese and Indian communities, who form 40 per cent of the population, are alarmed at creeping Islamisation.

Abdul Badawi, the prime minister, this month joined other leaders for the first time in denying what the British-authored constitution has said for 50 years - that Malaysia is a secular state.

Sharia law already operates in some Malaysian states and is occasionally applied to non-Muslims, as in July when Islamic officials forcibly separated a Hindu-Muslim couple with six children after 21 years of marriage.
Sharia. It's not just for Muslims any more.