Monday, July 31, 2006

Peace Love Understanding

Via Atrios. Enjoy.

They Received What They Wanted

& now are complaining about it. The city fathers & mothers ought to try & recall how many times they uttered the phrase: No More Taxes. Serves them right.

Only The Best

For state sponsored & approved murder.
A doctor who oversaw dozens of Missouri executions until his questionable practices led a judge to suspend executions in the state has been sued for malpractice more than 20 times and has a history of making medical mistakes, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported Sunday.

Ya Think?

I'm sure glad we have responsible journalists who can analyze foreign policy stuff for us hicks in the woods. I wouldn't know how to react without them.
The Israeli bombs that slammed into the Lebanese village of Qana yesterday did more than kill three dozen children and a score of adults. They struck at the core of U.S. foreign policy in the region and illustrated in heart-breaking images the enormous risks for Washington in the current Middle East crisis.

With each new scene of carnage in southern Lebanon, outrage in the Arab world and Europe has intensified against Israel and its prime sponsor, raising the prospect of a backlash resulting in a new Middle East quagmire for the United States, according to regional specialists, diplomats and former U.S. officials.

Blomberg Lives Up... ReThug ideals of freedom.

Peregrine Falcons

Good news for Wisconsin & peregrines.
More than four decades after the insecticide DDT wiped out all peregrine falcons in Wisconsin, the raptors have successfully hatched young at more than 20 nests for a second consecutive year - a small number, though it is in line with their post-World War II presence in the state, researchers said.

Peregrine Falcon - Photo by Bob Gress

Sunday, July 30, 2006

What An Asshole

Conrad Burns.

Union Bug

Another reason why Holy Joe is such a loser.
Heres a message for John Olsen,The AFL-CIO and every union member in CT:

Joe Lieberman,His Staff and his Campaign just gave you the Biggest F*#K You anyone who runs as a Democrat can. They think so little of you and the entire Labor Movement that having a union Shop make their "Hug Buttons" wasn't important enough to even think about.Your endorsement was the only thing that mattered,not your workers not your families and not the Quality of work union workers guarentee(sic).

He also lost the NYT's endorsement.
On the Armed Services Committee, Mr. Lieberman has left it to Republicans like Lindsey Graham of South Carolina to investigate the administration’s actions. In 2004, Mr. Lieberman praised Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld for expressing regret about Abu Ghraib, then added: “I cannot help but say, however, that those who were responsible for killing 3,000 Americans on September 11th, 2001, never apologized.” To suggest even rhetorically that the American military could be held to the same standard of behavior as terrorists is outrageous, and a good example of how avidly the senator has adopted the Bush spin and helped the administration avoid accounting for Abu Ghraib.

Mr. Lieberman prides himself on being a legal thinker and a champion of civil liberties. But he appointed himself defender of Attorney General Alberto Gonzales and the administration’s policy of holding hundreds of foreign citizens in prison without any due process. He seconded Mr. Gonzales’s sneering reference to the “quaint” provisions of the Geneva Conventions. He has shown no interest in prodding his Republican friends into investigating how the administration misled the nation about Iraq’s weapons. There is no use having a senator famous for getting along with Republicans if he never challenges them on issues of profound importance.

If Mr. Lieberman had once stood up and taken the lead in saying that there were some places a president had no right to take his country even during a time of war, neither he nor this page would be where we are today. But by suggesting that there is no principled space for that kind of opposition, he has forfeited his role as a conscience of his party, and has forfeited our support.

Emphasis added.

U.S. Medical Care Outsourced

This says a lot about the state of medical care costs in our country.
After going overseas to outsource everything from manufacturing to customer services, American businesses — pressed by rising healthcare costs — are looking offshore for medical benefits as well.

A growing number of employers that fund their own health insurance plans are looking into sending ailing employees abroad for surgeries that in the U.S. cost tens of thousands of dollars more.

Mel Gibson, Racist

The DUI incident only gets better. What a tool.
Once inside the car, a source directly connected with the case says Gibson began banging himself against the seat. The report says Gibson told the deputy, "You mother f****r. I'm going to f*** you." The report also says "Gibson almost continually [sic] threatened me saying he 'owns Malibu' and will spend all of his money to 'get even' with me."

The report says Gibson then launched into a barrage of anti-Semitic statements: "F*****g Jews... The Jews are responsible for all the wars in the world." Gibson then asked the deputy, "Are you a Jew?"

UPDATE: More background from Wolcott. I'll never get a link from Wolcott. Sad, but true.

John Hall

Anyone standing on cement blocks next to Bonnie Raitt deserves our support. Give him some financial love.

John Hall, right, a candidate for New York's 19th Congressional District, poses for a photo with singer Bonnie Raitt before Raitt performed at a benefit concert for Central Park Summer Stage, June 28, 2006, in New York. Hall, a singer-songwriter who founded the 1970s-era band Orleans and penned the pop tunes 'Still the One' and 'Dance With Me,' is among four Democrats seeking the nomination to challenge Republican incumbent Rep. Sue Kelly.

Anti-War Drumbeat

I read a sad, sad article about an animal shelter & the many fighting dogs that they had to kill, including some puppies. It makes me think of a poem a dear friend wrote years ago that ended with the line:
I can't keep a dog alive.
I get that feeling a lot these days. There are signs, however, that better days are ahead. Here's a column from the St. Petersburg Times that made me feel better, even though its subject matter is Iraq.
History is likely to judge George W. Bush harshly for this foreign policy catastrophe, and it should. This war, like the one in Vietnam, was started by blind and arrogant men who refused to listen to any general or diplomat who had the nerve to warn them about what they were getting into.
Army Spc. David Fulcher, 22, a medic from Lynchburg, Va., told the Post: "They say we're here and we've given them Iraqis freedom, but really, what is that? You've got kids here who can't go to school. You've got people here who don't have jobs anymore. You've got people here who don't have power. You know, so yeah, they got freedom now, but when they didn't have freedom, everybody had a job."

If only the White House could cut through the fog of war and see things as clearly as the soldiers on the ground in Iraq.

With God On Their Side

An Israeli airstrike Sunday killed at least 50 people - more than half children - in a southern Lebanese village, the deadliest attack in 19 days of fighting.

That would be 25 children. I wonder if they were writing on the rocket's tips like the Israeli children were.

In the public relations battle brewing on-line, there is a new eye to the center of the storm surrounding the war with Hizbullah - a series of photos showing Israeli children writing messages on shells meant for targets in Lebanon.

Questions over the photos' authenticity have been put to rest by authorities that were present during the incident, which occurred on July 17 near the northern border. The mostly local children had been brought to see the shells by their parents.

I must add that I fully support Israel, its right to exist, its right to defend itself in a manner consistent with an understanding of proportionality.

Saturday, July 29, 2006

Continuing To Lie

This is no surprise, is it?
Sen. Pat Roberts (R-Kan.), chairman of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, which is overseeing the investigation, said his report was near completion and there was no need for the fuss.

That was nine months ago.

The Republican-led committee, which agreed in February 2004 to write the report, has yet to complete its work. Just two of five planned sections of the committee's findings are fully drafted and ready to be voted on by members, according to Democratic and Republican staffers. Committee sources involved with the report, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, said they are working hard to complete it. But disputing Roberts, they said they had started almost from scratch in November after Democrats staged their protest.

Here's the ReThug Bu$hCo ass kisser himself. Kansas really needs to do something about this dickhead.
Sen. Pat Roberts (R-Kan.) said nine months ago that his committee was nearly done with a report on U.S. prewar intelligence on Iraq.

These ReThug scolds really need to shut the hell up. Man, with all the finger waving they do, it must be exhausting.

Weather Report

Toledo, Ohio.
July has become the wettest month in Toledo since the National Weather Service began measuring precipitation in 1871.

Told You So

Bu$hCo's compassion on display once again.
"...David F. Crown, a retired mechanical engineer, said: “Blue Cross is saying that even though she will get no benefit, she must still pay the premiums. That’s outrageous. We have never had insurance policies that gave us no benefit yet required us to pay premiums.”

Friday, July 28, 2006

The Passion Of The Bottle

Jerk-off sadistic moralist found out, Edition #478,903.
Mel Gibson was arrested early Friday for investigation of driving under the influence of alcohol, authorities said.
"He was going 87 miles per hour in a 45-miles-per-hour zone," Whitmore said.

Deputies conducted field sobriety tests. A breath test indicated Gibson's blood-alcohol level was 0.12 percent, Whitmore said. California drivers 21 and older must remain under 0.08 percent.

Luckily no one was murdered by Gibson. What would a bleeding, a really bleeding Jesus say?


Via Froomkin we get this quote from Tom Friedman.
"The world hates George Bush more than any U.S. president in my lifetime. He is radioactive -- and so caught up in his own ideological bubble that he is incapable of imagining or forging alternative strategies."
I can't give you the link to the NYT because Friedman & others are behind the paid wall that they put up, but you can pay for the whole thing if you want to. I won't, based on true principle.

From the same Foomkin column we get this from Paul Krugman, another prisoner to the NYT's money. It's about Bu$hCo's rewriting of history.
"First, if the facts fail to support the administration position on an issue -- stem cells, global warming, tax cuts, income inequality, Iraq -- officials refuse to acknowledge the facts. . . .

"Meanwhile, apparatchiks in the media spread disinformation. It's hard to imagine what the world looks like to the large number of Americans who get their news by watching Fox and listening to Rush Limbaugh, but I get a pretty good sense from my mailbag."

They Say They Will Stop

It probably too late, however. Billmon on Israel, again.
Combine this with an enormous sense of historic grievance ("Serbs will never be beaten again!" "The Versailles Treaty has shamed the Fatherland!") and a gnawing fear of encirclement, and you've got all the ingredients for a catastrophe, of the kind that could leave the Israelis, and their American patrons, up to their necks in blood -- of the innocent and the guilty alike.

OK, I'll Post About It

Norm Coleman's (R-Asshat) dad seems to be quite the man about town, or in this case, man in the back seat.
St. Paul police cited the 81-year-old father of Sen. Norm Coleman and a female companion after officers reported seeing them engaged in a sex act in the parking lot of a popular pizzeria.
I wonder what's in the pizza, I think I need some.

Good Point

BooMan has the goods on Bu$hCo's non-foreign policy.
If they are not going to quit then they need to be removed from office. They are literally destroying the world.

Floyd Dixon, R.I.P.


Thursday, July 27, 2006

Lesbian Wildlife


False Intelligence

No fucking intelligence at all in Bu$hCo's world. The SideKick turned me on to the article. My heart is bursting with happiness that he reads Rolling Stone, at least online. Of course, he then proceeds to sing the praises of some country & western singer who amazingly discovered that a room has four walls. Insightful, no?
Unable to win the internal battle over Iran being waged within the administration, a member of Feith's secret unit in the Pentagon was effectively resorting to treason, recruiting AIPAC to use its enormous influence to pressure the president into adopting the draft directive and wage war against Iran.
But the Bush administration's hostility toward Iran is not simply an outgrowth of the current crisis. War with Iran has been in the works for the past five years, shaped in almost complete secrecy by a small group of senior Pentagon officials attached to the Office of Special Plans. The man who created the OSP was Douglas Feith, the undersecretary of defense for policy. A former Middle East specialist on the National Security Council in the Reagan administration, Feith had long urged Israel to secure its borders in the Middle East by attacking Iraq and Iran. After Bush's election, Feith went to work to make that vision a reality, putting together a team of neoconservative hawks determined to drive the U.S. to attack Tehran. Before Bush had been in office a year, Feith's team had arranged a covert meeting in Rome with a group of Iranians to discuss their clandestine help.


Original scroll text of On The Road to be published.

Original contents of the ‘‘On the Road’’ scroll will be published next year.

Dobson's Family

Just grew by one. So did my family. Interesting find in Greece.

Professor of geology Evangelia Tsoukala holds the skull of a mesopithecus at an excavation in Halkidiki, northern Greece, Wednesday, July 26, 2006. The skull is more than 5 million years old, researchers said.

Bu$hCo's War Disaster

Dan Froomkin has another good piece in today's WaPo. Here are some great parts:
Michael Hirsch (here's his bio ) writes in Newsweek: "The Bush administration has fought the 'war on terror' [with] . . . one lunatic leap of logic after another based on unreliable sources, linking up enemies that had little to do with each other. . . . The president has used Al Qaeda to gin up the threat from Iraq, just as he is now conflating Hizbullah and Hamas with Al Qaeda as 'terrorists' of the same ilk. . . .
Jonathan Freedland (here's his bio ) writes in the Guardian: "It's fashionable to blame the US for all the world's ills, but in this case the sins, both of omission and commission, of the Bush administration genuinely belong at the heart of the trouble. .
Christopher Dickey writes in Newsweek (here's his bio ): "When I heard Condi talking in pitiless academic pieties today about 'strong and robust' mandates and 'dedicated and urgent action,' I actually felt sorry for her, for our government, and for Israel. As in Iraq three years ago, the administration has been blinded to the political realities by shock-and-awe military firepower. Clinging to its faith in precision-guided munitions and cluster bombs, it has decided to let Lebanon bleed, as if that's the way to build the future for peace and democracy."
Emphasis added.

Good For Chicago

This is a great development for the working poor in the Chicago area. Wal-Mart,, can certainly afford to pay a relatively decent wage. & the benefit requirement will help the taxpayers of Illinois. Now for Wisconsin, Ashland in particular.

HOG Butcher for the World,
Tool Maker, Stacker of Wheat,
Player with Railroads and the Nation's Freight Handler;
Stormy, husky, brawling,
City of the Big Shoulders:

They tell me you are wicked and I believe them, for I
have seen your painted women under the gas lamps
luring the farm boys.
And they tell me you are crooked and I answer: Yes, it
is true I have seen the gunman kill and go free to
kill again.
And they tell me you are brutal and my reply is: On the
faces of women and children I have seen the marks
of wanton hunger.
And having answered so I turn once more to those who
sneer at this my city, and I give them back the sneer
and say to them:
Come and show me another city with lifted head singing
so proud to be alive and coarse and strong and cunning.
Flinging magnetic curses amid the toil of piling job on
job, here is a tall bold slugger set vivid against the
little soft cities;

First stanzas from Carl Sandburg's Chicago. You can see the whole poem here. Now we can add defender of the working poor. & for all you dumbasses, even with a couple both working at WalMart, $20 an hour is no wage from which to pay a mortgage.

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Monday, July 24, 2006

Very Good

The trouble with reading blogs is that I find things that are things I ought to write about, only that what I'm reading is better than what I would write. Now that sentence is one reason why. Like others, I have been loath to write much about Israel's vicious bombing of Lebanon. I'll admit to not wanting to suffer the slings & arrows of outraged people throwing the anti-semitism hand grenade my way. Here is a great piece on the recent problems in Lebanon. It's via Sadly, No!
Near the end of the meal, I heard a buzz from the wait-station. Kate was in a corner, pretending not to be freaking out. Paul came out from the kitchen. The Prince had been playing grab-ass with Kate all night. The other servers had seen it. She'd tried not to make a big deal of it, but when it became plain that she wasn't into Captain Handsy, our visiting dignitary had launched into a particularly nasty set of comments.

A bunch of us followed Paul out as he crossed onto the patio. He nodded to the Saudi. "Yeah. I gotta ask you to leave."

Objections arose. Paul shook his head. "She works for me. I don't allow that for any guest. Now I gotta ask you a second time, please leave. Meal's on the house."

The Saudi's lackey starts to yell: "You can't talk to him like this! This man is Prince --"

Paul cuts him off with a whistle, a New York cab whistle. Sets his shoulders and says:

"This is America, which makes you the Prince of absolutely fucking nobody."

The single most patriotic moment of my life.

Sunday, July 23, 2006

Some News

Tiger wins the British Open. I watched part of it today before chaining myself the the hay wagon. Watching him play well is a great delight. Not to mention he cried after he won.

More here.

& more here.
On Sunday when most of the others in contention were giving it their please-land-in-the-fairway swings and I-hope-the-hole-gets-in-the-way putting stroke, Woods played with the ease of someone sneaking in a few holes by himself before meeting the family for dinner. In fact, that pretty much was what Tiger was doing -- playing by himself. Not only did no one really pressure him, but it is unlikely Woods would have noticed even if they did.

Saturday, July 22, 2006

Can't Get It Right

In Iraq, or New Orleans.
Ten months after Hurricane Katrina, the city still does not have a reliable electrical system. Hundreds of millions of dollars’ worth of repairs are still needed on a system devastated by flooding, the local utility is in bankruptcy and less than half the system’s prestorm customers have returned. Of those who have, many have endured hot and sleepless nights with no air-conditioning.

Friday, July 21, 2006

The French Made Me Fasten It

OK, people, I've been sitting here thinking about tomorrow, awful tomorrow when I have to haul 300 bales of 1st crop hay from the field to my pole barn. & I have to do this all alone, except for my truck, my Sirius satellite radio, 4 dark setters & 1 yellow lab , & 2 Tennessee Walkers & 2 Spotted Saddle Horses who only care about the grain I'm keeping away from them. Mrs. coldH2O left me again for the wilds of northern MN & I hope she stays clear of the fires that are crying havoc in the Boundary Waters. (Note to dumbasses: the fires are not the result of not allowing salvage logging.) & of course, I prefer 2nd crop hay, but this year looks very bad, since we have had 0 rain. This stuff looks green, so it'll probably be OK. To get my mind off all that, I clicked on over to this blog. I've read it randomly in the past, but I was really happy to see the discussion in this post It was good to think about Yeats again, & not just his "best"/"worst"/"rough beasts" etc. So go read the post & here's a tidbit. If it wasn't for poetry, there would be no culture. & if there were no culture there would be no left-wing progressive thinking boys & girls.
But this is just warmup, folks, for the devastating third stanza:

O sages standing in God’s holy fire
As in the gold mosaic of a wall,
Come from the holy fire, perne in a gyre,
And be the singing-masters of my soul.
Consume my heart away; sick with desire
And fastened to a dying animal
It knows not what it is; and gather me
Into the artifice of eternity.

You just can’t get any more incendiary-yearning than that.

In fact, when I heard that stanza, particularly its second four lines, I broke out in a cold sweat. I could slip my way down the sinuous slant-rhymes of wall, soul, animal, but I got stuck on “fastened” and couldn’t get loose. Fastened to a dying animal. Jesus H. Christ. Next to this, T. S. Eliot’s evocations of old age (which, of course, he began writing at about the age of nine) look thin and watery. And fastened: how much more evocative, and more powerful, than a cognate like “tethered to” or “burdened with”: it says “held fast,” sure, and it merely tells us what we already knew, namely, that this sublunary sphere and all its flailing fleshly creatures are impediments and worse. But as Viktor Shklovsky would say, it renews perception, it makes the stone stony. It’s almost impossible, I think—no matter how old or young you may think you are—to read that line without becoming sick with desire—and viscerally aware of the dying animal that houses the desiring. Remember “The young/ In one another’s arms, birds in the trees” from the poem’s opening lines? Yes, well, now you know why your poet referred to them not as emblems of burgeoning life but as “those dying generations.” For as Yeats sails east, sick with desire, he speaks of a most Buddhist wish to be free of all attachment, not least to the dying animal in which his soul is temporarily encased. No, that’s not quite right: to which his soul is fastened.

Gnarls Barkley

RLK, again for Christ's sake. Go here.

Technical Violations

My ass.
The political action committee used as a vehicle to power in Congress by former Rep. Tom DeLay has agreed to pay $115,000 in fines for violations of federal campaign rules and will close its doors permanently, the Federal Election Commission disclosed Thursday.

Re: Post Below

On the other hand.

One More Reason

I'm suspicious, always suspicious, about authority in a uniform.

Thursday, July 20, 2006

Hell Is At Zero Degrees Centigrade

I'm linking to Kos. I have loved Tom Harkin for a long time. Liberals like Mr. Harkin, WWII vets, midwest progressive farm values, etc., are becoming extinct. That's OK is some respects, but not OK in many others. Here's something he said about idiot Bu$hCo's veto of the stem cell bill:
So I ask, if using discarded embryos to extract stem cells is murder, isn't it then immoral to allow federal research on existing lines of embryonic stem cells as the current administration's policy permits? Murder is murder, Mr. President.

And isn't it immoral to allow privately funded embryonic research to continue? Now again, in this country, as we heard many times on the floor here in the last couple days of the debate, privately funded embryonic stem cell research goes on in the United States. But according to the President, this is murder. And if it's really murder...why isn't the President using his authority, his moral authority, to shut down all the in-vitro fertilization clinics in America? By his definition of murder, these clinics are institutions of mass murder.

Virtually everytime a couple goes to a fertility clinic, leftover embryos are created...if that's murder, how can the President permit it to continue? Where's his outrage at the IVF clinics in this country? Why isn't he up here proposing legislation to shut down in-vitro fertilization in this country? Make it a crime, a federal crime, to conduct in-vitro fertilization? In the President's narrow, moral universe, it seems to be just fine to destroy embryos, to throw them away, as the by-product of producing babies through IVF, but it's murder to use the embryos to conduct life saving research. Someone please explain the logic of that to me.

And why isn't the President prosecuting the many thousands of American men and women who use these IVF clinics? If their attempts to have children results in leftover embryos and these embryos eventually get discarded, aren't they complicit in murder? Under the President's narrow, moral logic, and I'd hate to call it logic, the President's narrow, moral view, any man or woman who allows their embryo to be discarded, something that happens everyday, is authorizing murder. Why is the President standing idly by? Why isn't he putting all these men and women in jail?

Yes, why isn't he locking these people up? Ask your congressperson or senator. I'd be interested in their replies. Send them on in.

Petri Dish, Oh, Petri Dish

Via Susie Madrak.
Charles Pierce:

It just so happens that I have a couple of really ugly-ass dogs in this fight over embryonic stem-cell research. Not many political issues are personal with me, but this one deeply is. I have watched slow death from neurological disease once too often in my life to be anything but furious when Sam Brownback, a United States senator to the everlasting embarrassment of that body, pulls out a child’s drawing of an embryo with a smiley-face in order to argue his position. Or when Tony Snow, that towering public fake, starts getting glib about “murder,” as though there isn’t enough blood lapping at the ankles of everyone in this White House to float a barge. Or when Snow’s boss, that tough-talkin’, crumb-spittin’, neck-rubbin’ international buckaroo, uses the first veto of his presidential career and then hides behind children while maundering incoherently about a “moral line” as though he’d recognize one if he fell over it. Is there any doubt that, if this guy got Parkinson’s Disease, he’d eat those little buggers out of the petri dish with a spoon, probably dribbling some of them on Tony Blair in the process? Sorry, Ez. I don’t give a damn how tactically brilliant this may be. I look at this action and this is what I know — that millions of Americans will die horrible deaths and the government of the United States doesn’t give a good goddamn about them. Period. And, no, Senator Obama, I don’t have to respect the deeply held beliefs of anyone who condemns their fellow human beings to miserable suffering on the basis of anthropomorphized blastocysts in the service of an anthropomorphized god. Were it in my power, I’d run all those former embryos out of government until they grew the hell up.
Not much more I can add. Brilliant.


Against hope. With apologies to Nadezhda Madenstam. Maybe not apologies, but something like I hope it doesn't happen here.
A federal judge Thursday refused to dismiss a lawsuit challenging the Bush administration's domestic spying program, rejecting government claims that allowing the case to go forward could expose state secrets and jeopardize the war on terror.

Oh, Oh

Via RLK we get this great cartoon.  The original date of publication was, get this, 4/1/2003!

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

New Cats On The Block

Go buy the book. It's one of the great books of all time.

Amur Tiger Time

& an Amur Leopard, too.

Real Important

So the House fails to override Bu$hCo's idiotic first veto,  but we can all sleep better tonight, because they did protect the pledge from the courts. Jesus wrapped in mesh.

A Little Levity

Via Froomkin. Go read his stuff today. Enjoy Letterman.

Bu$hCo Vetoes Stem Cell Bill

I hope the friends & family of this soldier remember Bu$hCo's cruel veto. This is his first & only veto. What a worthless skin bag.

Another Question

Siva Vaidhyanathan asks - "Wait, who won the Cold War?" It's really worth a few minutes to read.
The sad thing about this whole affair is that what Putin has accomplished in Russia is not so far from what W wants to accomplish in our country. He would love it if he could quiet dissent, monitor opponents, solidify power in a strong executive office, limit the power of the legislature to cheerleading, and rule beyond judicial oversight while making his friends and supporters rich through obscene no-bid government contracts.

Headline Of The Day

Farmers Use Bull Semen to Inseminate Cows

Well, I see that things are progressing.

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Who's Paying The Price?

Israeli warplanes continued to batter targets in Lebanon today, killing 30 people, including 11 members of the Lebanese Army when bombs hit their barracks east of Beirut. Four of the dead were officers, and 30 more soldiers were wounded. Doesn't sound like Hezbolleh, does it?

Doesn't look like it either.

Israeli Planes Batter Lebanon Again, Killing 30

& So It Goes

Abu Al Gonzales, our Attorney General, said this today:
...President Bush personally blocked Justice Department lawyers from pursuing an internal probe of the warrantless eavesdropping program that monitors Americans' international calls and e-mails....
& last week Bu$hCo's head of the Justice Department's Office of Legal Counsel said this:
Bradbury: The President is always right.
&, of course, the rugged he-man who can't ride a bike. Can't ride a bike. Can't eat a pretzel. But he can grope the German Chancellor, Ms. Merkel. What a class, fucking act. Makes you proud to be an American, doesn't it? Pardon me while I puke.

More on the grope from Billmon.
I know this kind of nastiness isn't about sex, but it's not entirely clear to me what it is about. I realize Bush has a compulsive need to humiliate or at least denigrate those who make him feel inadequate or inferior (his natural condition) but this is ridiculous. Why should the female chancellor of Germany be singled out for such an extreme dose of Shrub's Oedipal pathologies?

Demon Duck Of Doom

RLK & I have similiar interests, except for a & b & c & d &...z. Just kidding, of course. However, RLK sent me this a while back & I had read about it as well. What a name, who could resist blogging about it. The Aussies, they're almost French.
"Very big birds ... more like ducks, earned the name 'demon duck of doom', some at least may have been carnivorous as well," Hand told ABC radio.

What A Wonderful Democracy We've Built

What a fool Bu$hCo is.
An average of more than 100 civilians per day were killed in Iraq last month, the highest monthly tally of violent deaths since the fall of Baghdad, the United Nations reported today.

Monday, July 17, 2006


I'm back from my longest motorcycle ride to date - approx. 250 miles round trip. My back is a bit stiff, but otherwise, it was great. I found myself going through a big, sweeping curve at about 70 MPH, but I will deny that in court, in fact, I will say it is a giant rightwing conspiracy, led by the anonymous commenter troll. The new helmet worked very well, by head stayed relatively cool in this awful heat. The vents are well designed. I had a great time with my old friend B. His mother died last week, although she hadn't been able to recognize anyone in quite some time. She had some form of dementia, not Alzhiemer's. My friend read a sweet & funny paragraph from a recent Philip Roth novel & it sprinkled a bit. Not bad as far as funeral's go. My friend & I did a bit of a nostalgia ride, a trout river we fished decades ago, a bar near where he had harvested wild rice, a lake we used to swim at (& a large rock, called "The Rock", just submerged under the water), my old house. We also talked about people, friends, we hadn't seen since 1967. &, not to be forgotten are my sister's - I had a great time with both of them, ate some nice food, saw how one sister & her boyfriend had fixed up their backyard, small pond & all. & now I'm home & the only bad news is that the sheetrock WAS NOT COMPLETED at the Darling Daughter's home. All I can say is that Mrs. coldH2O had better get on the stick, re: her other brothers. I don't do sheetrock, unless, of course, I have to. Later.


Here's a map, via the ever helpful & smart RLK. This disaster, another one in a long series, will be on Bush's watch.


Jucy Lucy

Sunday, July 16, 2006

Great Question

Here's the question. When will Dan Hymans answer it?

My question to the hospital board members, City of Ashland, and to Dan Hymans: Why is it OK to pay good wages and benefits in Superior but to avoid these issues in your City?

When will the answer come from Mr. Hymana? (sic) I'm sure we will never hear from him on this issue. & that's a shame.

Saturday, July 15, 2006

Global Warming Is Just A

Left-wing plot to scare Americans into socialism or paganism or into their bomb shelters to cool off. Via Susie.
The government reported Friday that the average temperature for the 48 contiguous United States from January through June was 51.8 degrees Fahrenheit, or 3.4 degrees above average for the 20th century.


Has grown older. "Ready to rock"? We'll be the judge of that, but I hope it's true.

The Truth?

It's just anything a ReThug says. For the love of Jesus in a do rag, when will all Americans reject this bullshit?
In a press release last week, the National Republican Senatorial Committee (NRSC) quoted three politically prominent Democrats and one Republican -- attacking the crime-fighting record of Hennepin County Attorney Amy Klobuchar, the DFL candidate for the U.S. Senate.
Slight problem: None of the four was talking about Klobuchar, although the NRSC said they were.

Defending Itself?

I suppose this is just acceptable collateral damage. Things just aren't getting any better.

The Result

Of the ReThug's Southern Strategy. Just amazing.

Friday, July 14, 2006


After two weeks at the darling daughter's home, I finally got back to my home. & I'm going to leave again tomorrow for my longest bike ride yet, 120 miles to my hometown to visit with a dear friend from sunny CA that I haven't seen in many, many years. I bought a new Harley helmet while in the Cities & a cool cup holder that isn't reccommended for hot liquids, but I'm still putting my coffee cup in the damn thing, although this weekend will probably require lots & lots of water. Here are some pics of my work. Notice the drops of sweat on the lens, just like the one Pissed Off Patricia spotted in the last series.

Here's the beginning of taking the ceiling out of the kitchen.

A pile on the floor.

Examples of many plumbing eras, from 1905 to the 1990s. Not all of these pipes actually function anymore. There's even a gas pipe in there, the house was lit by gas lamps at one time.

The ceiling has been removed, the room vacuumed & washed by the estimable Mrs. coldH2O, curtains installed, food & spices restored, & the floor clean enough to eat from.

Here's the "finished" babies' room. It passed both the electrical inspection & the insulation inspection.

& finally, your intrepid blogger, after forgetting he was biting into a Juicy Lucy & not just a regular cheeseburger. The substance you see displayed on the shirt, etc., is cheese from the center of the Lucy. I was so hungry after all the sweating & work that I forgot that the cheese was liquid inside the burger. I won't make that mistake again, yeah, sure I won't.

Thursday, July 13, 2006

Vote For Bucky

Go here to vote for Bucky Badger. He's in the running for the mascot hall of fame. All you upright Wisco folks need to vote & those who aren't Badgers need to vote for us to, because I said so, OK? Particularly those folks in Oakland who asked for votes concerning an organic garden.

Middle East Peace?

What is Israel doing? How does bombing a country help create peace? I'm just full of questions this afternoon. Nothing seems to be getting better.
Thursday, July 13th, 2006
Israel Launches Heaviest Bombing of Lebanon in 24 Years; Airport Attacked, Over 40 Civilians Killed

Israel has launched its heaviest bombing of Lebanon in 24 years following the capture of two Israeli soldiers by Hezbollah. Three Israeli rockets hit runways at Beirut airport, forcing it to close. Israeli ships have entered Lebanese water to block ports. More than 20 bridges were targeted, causing heavy damage. Up to 47 civilians, including over 15 children were killed in the attacks. [includes rush transcript] Israel has launched its heaviest bombing of Lebanon in 24 years. Three Israeli rockets hit runways at Beirut airport, forcing the closure of the country's only international airport. Israeli ships have entered Lebanese water to block ports. More than 20 bridges were targeted, causing heavy damage. And an Israeli helicopter fired a missile at the headquarters of Hezbollah's Al Manar TV station in a Beirut suburb. The major offensive follows the capture of two Israeli soldiers by Hezbollah.

Overnight raids across southern Lebanon killed up to 47 civilians, including more than 15 children, and wounded over 100 people. Israeli Army Chief of Staff Dan Halutz told Haaretz "Nothing is safe [in Lebanon], as simple as that."

Health Care, Shmealth Care

Whiskey Bar talks about health care. What's the condition of your health care? Your health? What's your solution? Do you think it's better to be young, old, or dead? Discuss.

Graphic Designers

Unite! Via WTF Is It Now?

Head Butt

The kid, aka The Darling Daughter & the son-in-law & I have been having a disagreement on Zidane's head butt of that Italian guy in the World Cup final. I said it was probably deserved, something really had to provoke him to do that. It turns out I was right, but the kids kept at me, agreeing with all the sports pundits on ESPN, that he should have restrained himself. Here is Steve Gilliard's take on it, the best explanation I've seen, plus he agrees with me, a bonus. First, however, a Thurgood Marshall quote from the post:
As Thurgood Marshall said "My father said when a man calls you a nigger, you have some business to settle right there."

The Hell With Health

ReThugs use Orwellian language, again, to try to deny individual states the power to protect the health of citizens.
House Republicans are pushing new legislation that could wipe out the ability of California and other states to ban or strictly limit the use of pesticides and toxic industrial chemicals that can jeopardize human health.

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

What's Wrong With American Politics #389303

Read this post by Matt Stoller. If you don't read it, I'll be mad, but here is NARAL's phone number to call those cynical, non-supporters of women's reproductive health. The link "here" will work if you click through to the original post.
If you are a NARAL member, the feedback form is here and the telephone numbers are as follows. DC: 202.973.3000 CT: 860.524.1086


I'd like to see some moderates in the ReThug Party. The three that AP reporter Anne Plummer Flaherty mentions - Warner, McCain, Graham - are about as far away from being moderate as a carp is from a trout & I mean no offense to carp. What the hell is she thinking?
GOP moderates in the Senate - including Sens. John W. Warner of Virginia, John McCain of Arizona and Lindsey Graham of South Carolina - have said they are open to using the military's court-martial system as a template to build a new court system to prosecute detainees.

Tuesday, July 11, 2006


Read this.
People in Washington need to wrap their minds around the fact that this stuff really is bubbling up from below and it's real. Bloggers are merely in the vanguard of a rising leftwing populist sentiment around the country. It is a predictable reaction when a party ceases to be responsive to its voters. Liberalism has been moribund for some time now. This is a chance to at least begin the process of resuscitation and could be used by the political establishment as a useful counter-weight to help drag the country back from the brink of rightwing extremism.(If that's what they want, that is.) Smart politicians will accept this and find a way to use its strength strategically, not fight it.

Gratuitous emphasis added.

We're Winning



It's in the fungus.
The findings are in some ways unsurprising, as the hallucinogenic effect of the drugs — used by some Native American groups for religious rituals — has been known for centuries. Some experts said the results harkened back to the decades-old utopian visions of Timothy Leary, who urged a generation to tune in and drop out.
Well, yeah. Except you had to turn on as well. What is wrong with a little research, you moron reporter? & one person's utopia is another person's life.

Syd Barrett, R.I.P.

Shine On You Crazy Diamond
He reverted to his real name, Roger Barrett, and spent much of the rest of his life living quietly in his hometown of Cambridge, England. Moving into his mother's suburban house, he passed the time painting and tending the garden. His former bandmates made sure Barrett continued to receive royalties from his work with Pink Floyd.

Bu$hCo Do-Over #289289

I thought we already did this.
The Taliban will be defeated in Afghanistan although cross-border movement of militants is continuing, Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld said Tuesday.
What gives? Oh, I'm sorry.

Monday, July 10, 2006

His Bad

This won, if you can call it winning.
"Detective Bart Lasiter was in his office studying the light from his one small window falling on his super burrito when the door swung open to reveal a woman whose body said you've had your last burrito for a while, whose face said angels did exist, and whose eyes said she could make you dig your own grave and lick the shovel clean," Guigli wrote.
To which I can only add:

Sunday, July 09, 2006

Frank Zeidler, R.I.P.

This man is one reason I'm proud to be from Wisconsin. He did all good things for Milwaukee, & by extension, Wisconsin.

More here.

Saturday, July 08, 2006


Just finished up another day at the darling daughter's & the son-in-law's home. Everything hurts, the arthritis is really acting up so I popped a couple of vikes & finally the red alert knee pain is subsiding. A lot was accomplished & here's the evidence. OK, SideKick? & no more effing birds, insects, or flowers - but pics of you lifting up some furniture for R & D.

The room, note the cement up the walls between the studs.

Here's an example of what we found under the plaster & lathe. I'm no journeyman carpenter, but this was hard to believe. Note: the roof rafters are 24 inches on center, the ceiling joists, as they are, have 16 inch centers.

Another example of 1x4s (reused fir flooring) holding up a ceiling.

Maybe the goofy carpentry was the result of this, one of two bottles found in the insulation behind the lath.

Just A Great Rant

I read this very early this a.m., but it lodged somewhere in my shallow brain. I noticed Booman brought it up on an open thread. You, yes, you, my loyal four readers ought to go & read this. I'm so sick of Bu$hCo that I'm almost enjoying the work I'm doing in the heat in Minneapolis. & I hate remodeling.
It is like some sort of virus.
George W. Bush is just like that.

Everyone I know has had enough. Everyone I know is just about done. There is this threshold of happy deadened disgust, this point where the body simply resigns itself to the pain, a point where the disease, the poison has seeped so deeply into the bones that you just have to laugh and shrug it all off and go for a drink. Or 10.

Complete Fucking Moron

I don't know, but read what passes as Presidential rhetoric these days. This idiot can't even read a newspaper report about an important SCOTUS decision. Impeach the fool now.
"It didn't say we couldn't have done — couldn't have made that decision, see?" Mr. Bush said at a news conference in Chicago. "They were silent on whether or not Guantánamo — whether or not we should have used Guantánamo. In other words, they accepted the use of Guantánamo, the decision I made."

Friday, July 07, 2006

No More Toad Princes?

Bad news for the toad kissers among us.

No Surprise

This is why we, meaning progressive, thinking, compassionate people, LIBERALS, must keep on keeping on.
Post-Katrina New Orleans is a dangerous, oppressive place for the working poor who labor on the front lines of the city’s recovery effort, according to a report released Thursday by a Washington, D.C.-based legal center.

“The treatment of workers in New Orleans constitutes a national crisis of civil and human rights,” said the report by the Advancement Project and the National Immigration Law Center, which interviewed more than 700 workers over several months only to find glaring examples of unfair labor practices, homelessness and even harassment by police officers and contractors.

The report bluntly depicts racist, bleak times for those on the working end of construction equipment or the service industry, and details the experiences over the past months of migrant workers from out of town, many Hispanic and Asian, and also of blacks born and raised in New Orleans.

“New Orleans is being rebuilt on the backs of underpaid and unpaid workers perpetuating cycles of poverty that existed pre-Katrina,” wrote the authors, who include attorney Judith Browne-Dianis of the Washington-based legal aid group, the Advancement Project, and Marielena Hincapie of the National Immigration Law Center.

Emphasis added.

Thursday, July 06, 2006

Makes Sense To Me

More heat in the kitchen. That's a real inside joke with the kid today. If she even reads this given that she has to read for three these days. & I was reunited with a dear, dear friend this week in a random Target parking lot in the Cities. Almost too beat for me. A post will follow in the next week or so on this phenomenon. Otherwise, enjoy the fire.

John Klus?

Take the pledge. Via RLK.

Wednesday, July 05, 2006

Panthera Tigris Sunatrae

This sucks.


Thanks to RLK for this catch.

Health Care

I was going to title this post "Duh", but then realized what a good thing this would be if it was put into effect. I also realized that I'm living in America, where all the medical money is in the specialties, except for anything that deal's with children's health. Ask a pediatrician or a pediatric psychiatrist & they will tell you. That's the reason there is only one children's pysch M.D. in Wyoming. Well, that & the fact that Cheney is from Wyoming.
Pediatricians usually ask a mother about her baby's sleep pattern or a toddler's eating habits. But a study published today suggests that at routine checkups, they should ask a few questions about the mother's own well-being, too.

Just two simple questions -- about whether a mother has lost interest and pleasure in doing things lately, and whether she has been feeling down -- can quickly and easily start the process of getting the estimated 10 percent of mothers who are depressed the help they need, according to the study in this month's issue of the journal Pediatrics.

Questions Of The Day

Could government have done anything to prevent this? Can it do anything to alleviate the poverty now? Just asking.
The state's surge in poverty, as documented in the bipartisan Heartland Alliance's 2006 Report on Illinois Poverty, can be traced to a combination of factors: the loss of more than 225,000 manufacturing jobs in the last 15 years, soaring housing costs and cuts in social services due to the state budget crisis of the past several years.

Emphasis added.

Monday, July 03, 2006


Finally, the truth! Lieberman shows just what an asshole he is. He hasn't been much of a Democrat anyway & this just proves it. Jesus.
Senator Joseph I. Lieberman of Connecticut said today that he will run independently if he loses in the statewide Democratic primary next month, a move that further underscored his increasing vulnerability for his support for the war in Iraq and effectively means that he is willing to run two campaigns within three months to keep the seat he has held for three terms.

Whew, My Head Almost Exploded

Via FDL, we get the following explanation of the internets, jeez Louise, another tech-free brain. This is Sen. Ted Stevens. It's true, you get what you pay for.
There’s one company now you can sign up and you can get a movie delivered to your house daily by delivery service. Okay. And currently it comes to your house, it gets put in the mail box when you get home and you change your order but you pay for that, right.

But this service isn’t going to go through the interent and what you do is you just go to a place on the internet and you order your movie and guess what you can order ten of them delivered to you and the delivery charge is free.

Ten of them streaming across that internet and what happens to your own personal internet?

I just the other day got, an internet was sent by my staff at 10 o’clock in the morning on Friday and I just got it yesterday. Why?

Because it got tangled up with all these things going on the internet commercially….

They want to deliver vast amounts of information over the internet. And again, the internet is not something you just dump something on. It’s not a truck.

It’s a series of tubes.

And if you don’t understand those tubes can be filled and if they are filled, when you put your message in, it gets in line and its going to be delayed by anyone that puts into that tube enormous amounts of material, enormous amounts of material.

Now we have a separate Department of Defense internet now, did you know that?

Do you know why?

Because they have to have theirs delivered immediately. They can’t afford getting delayed by other people…. (emphasis mine)

9/11 Changed Nothing

Bloomberg has this up. So, the criminal Bu$hCo was spying on American citizens before the tragedy of New York in 2001. What say you anonymous commenters? Do you ReThugs feel safer now? Sons-of-bitches is too kind.
The U.S. National Security Agency asked AT&T Inc. to help it set up a domestic call monitoring site seven months before the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks, lawyers claimed June 23 in court papers filed in New York federal court.

What Next

Fife & Drum boys? &, of course, they'll need to be trained in the proper use of a weapon.
What began as an attempt to educate middle-school students about the military has set off a string of complaints from parents and teachers that new learning materials designed by a New Hampshire publisher for 9- to 14-year-olds amount to little more than an early recruiting pitch for the Army.

The latest issue of Cobblestone magazine, distributed nationwide to schools and libraries, is dedicated to the Army, a first for the popular periodical.

Titled ``Duty, Honor, Country," the issue depicts a soldier in Iraq manning a machine gun on its glossy cover and includes articles ranging from what it's like to go through boot camp -- ``You're in the Army Now" -- to a rundown of the Army's ``awesome arsenal," to a detailed description of Army career opportunities.

But most controversial has been the pair of teacher's guides prepared in conjunction with the magazine, which is touted as meeting national middle school performance standards for English and language arts. The classroom guides suggest that teachers invite a soldier, Army recruiter, or veteran to speak to their class and poll students on whether ``they think they might someday want to join the Army."

``Some of the teachers were like `Holy cow, look at this,' " said Francis Lunney , a sixth-grade English teacher in Hudson who said he found a copy in his school mailbox in May and quickly lodged a complaint in a telephone call to Carus Publishing in Peterborough, N.H. ``It looked exactly like the [official recruiting] material you get in high school. It didn't seem to be that different the way it was packaged."


Oh happy days - no sheetrocking. I found out from the kid & son-in-law that I won't have to do any sheetrocking this week, just electrical & a few other odds & ends. Still, the pulling down of old lath & plaster is a crappy job, but, it will make the rewiring a lot easier. I also fell into a sweet deal yesterday. As my loyal four (maybe five) readers know, the latest tool scam was to acquire an angle drill. They are pricey. While shopping for an unrelated item, I came across a deal I couldn't refuse - the cordless angle drill, plus another drill, plus a trim saw - all for the price of the angle drill & it all comes in a cool DeWalt bag. & the son-in-law & I got hats. The only thing that was better was that we installed the air conditioning unit in the first floor of the kids' home & it is cooling the place. Sweet.