horses and saddles sold cheap and other metaphors

Saturday, January 28, 2006

This is pretty fancy for a modular home, the Side Breeze, 3 bedroom and 3 baths mad expecially for narrow lots according to the on-line description. To me it looks like a little bit of modern mountain chateau, if there is such a thing. Looks like it would give everyone plenty of personal space.

Conviction Politics
The chattering classes are all very sure that the Democrats have made a grave mistake on Alito. According to reports in the press, many insider Democrats believe this too. I believe they are wrong. This may look like a ragged strategy in some respects, but it is good for us to be seen doing things that have no obvious political advantage and for which we can legitimately claim to have taken the moral high ground. Yes, the tittering congnoscenti will flutter their fans and whisper that Democrats are witless and dull, but in this case we are talking directly to the people not to them. They have no idea anymore that a world exists out here where poltical calculation is beside the point.

Regardless of how this comes out in the end, and we don't know until the votes are cast, this may be seen as a defining moment for the Democratic Party.

The whole thing is worth a read. The post I would have written if I was a better writer. Win or lose, five years from now or twenty years from now the Democrats as a party can stand up proud and say that the screwy machinations of the extreme SOTUS are the fault of far right ideologues, we warned you and you didn't listen.

Dramatic Slowdown in GDP Growth
Real gross domestic product -- the output of goods and services produced by labor and property located in the United States -- increased at an annual rate of 1.1 percent in the fourth quarter of 2005, according to advance estimates released by the Bureau of Economic Analysis. In the third quarter, real GDP increased 4.1 percent.

So much for the mantra that tax cuts are the holy grail of economic growth.

Friday, January 27, 2006

I have been meaning to do a post on modular housing/minimalists housing. The suburban sprwal issue aside for the moment, people need a space to live in. Many folks are opting to have fewer children then past generations or no children. Given the decrease in family size, the need for both affordibility and the desire among a growing segment of the population for simplicity, functionality, and ease of maintenance modular housing is making a small come back. I'll start with small dwellings for singles and small families and hope to do another post(s) about how this might help in rebuilding/revitlizing our cities.

The pictures featured are from weeHouse and pretty much speak for themselves.

from War and Piece,
A former federal mine safety official who investigated Pennington’s death for the state says this tragedy underscores a widespread problem in mines across the country. He says fines are too small to induce companies to fix hazards, and the entire mine safety system has no teeth.

Piss off the media and support Kerry, Kennedy,Boxer, Feingold and other true patriots and support the filibuster against Alito.

Thursday, January 26, 2006

Bird Flu Genes Decoded; New Clue to How It Kills
A bird-flu pandemic is unlikely until the virus becomes able to be passed from human to human, rather than from animal to human.

To decipher how that might happen, and why the influenza is so deadly in the first place, scientists have to understand how the virus is built. For this, they need lots of genetic data on the virus—and they just got a lot more.

Thanks to a new study, the available genetic information on bird flu has just doubled.

Scientists have created the first large-scale genomic analysis of the avian flu virus. In the process, they have spotted a new variation that could help reveal why some outbreaks—like the present H5N1 virus—are more deadly than others. (Watch video: The Next Killer Flu.)

Small Rocky Planet Found Orbiting Normal Star
The planet is estimated to be about 5.5 times as massive as Earth and thought to be rocky. It orbits a red dwarf star about 28,000 light-years away. Red dwarfs are about one-fifth as massive as the Sun and up to 50 times fainter. But they are among the most common stars in the universe.

hat tip to Ezra Klein for this:
From Bush's interview with the WSJ again:
We're spending over a billion now on technology, and I'm going to remind the American people that the way to achieve a national objective, which is less dependency on foreign oil, and improve the quality of our environment, is for the government to encourage research and development and new technologies that have got marketplace applications.

I thought that government's only job according to the conventional conservative wisdom was to stand back and let the market decide. If there ever were any real small government conservatives, will they rescue their agenda from the Bush conservatives. Another episode tomorrow as the world turns.

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Bill O'Reilly, the Faux king of political slime takes, what else, but a cheap shot at Daivd Corn. I think the O'Liar knows he's a button pushing moron and is one of those forces that wants political debate to take place in a sewer tube repleat with echo. He stays wealthy by not doing any actual work, not really standing for anything noble or honorable, but by creating divisions instaed of bridges. For the most part I don't think any bridges that might be buildt to cross the political divide will be made in my lifetime and its the O'Reilly's and Bush's that want it that way. It has never in the last twenty years been the goal of anyone on the right to be " a uniter not a divider".
O'REILLY: You have 638 footnotes in the book, you know. The problem with some of those footnotes if that you are using feel like David Corn, Robert Scheer, very far left individuals, as sources. And you really can't do that and then try to win over people who are in the middle or not far left, because these guys are bomb throwers.

BEGALA: David Corn is one of the best journalists I know. He was the first person to blow the whistle on the outing of Valerie Plame, which damaged our national security.

O'REILLY: He's a partisan guy.

Bill thinks the political center is somewhere between Nixon and Benito Mussolini. Seriously, it makes ya wonder if he's ever read James Madison or Benjamin Franklin, this country was founded by radical thinkers. I think he'd be more comfortable living in Iran, its very religious and authoritarian.

The BEAST 50 Most Loathsome People in America, 2005
10. Bill O’Reilly

Charges: Even Limbaugh must bow before O’Reilly’s unparalleled bullying skills and ability to deliver undiluted bullshit with an air of brusque authority. O’Reilly is so comfortable with his astounding hypocrisy that he didn’t skip a beat when he was publicly revealed to be a comically perverse sexual harasser, continuing to sanctimoniously moralize about the corrosive effects of rap music and intellectualism on American society. Main tactic against his critics, whose jobs rank among the easiest in the world, is to accuse them of his own methods: arbitrary smears, selective quotation, partisan motivation, and intellectual cowardice. Infuriatingly claims to be a political "independent" who just happens to parrot virtually every Republican talking point and equate mainstream liberals with Nazis and Stalinists. Claimed his call for abandoning San Francisco to al Qaeda bombing was "satirical," which is itself the funniest thing he’s ever said. An honest to goodness list-making Joe McCarthy wannabe, with the ACLU standing in for the Communist Party.

Exhibit A: O’Reilly’s novel, Those Who Trespass, which reads like an eighth grade writing assignment, is about a blustery news correspondent, demoted from foreign correspondence to less prestigious work (as O’Reilly was when he moved from ABC News to Inside Edition), who murders a string of colleagues he feels have hindered his career. "I kill you on page six," he told Charlie Gibson on Good Morning America.

Sentence: After O'Reilly's influence fundamentally changes the nature of jurisprudence, he is tortured and jailed for life when it is discovered that he once leafed through a copy of the Communist Manifesto as a teen.

The Link Road to barbeque

How to you get to a Memphis barbeque recipe? First you go to Democratic Veteran's post called....Why am I not surprised?
Could it have been that the invasion of Iraq was nothing but a combination of a way for The Deserting Fratboy Coward and his Bedwetting Chickenhawk allies to get wood and get elected/reelected? Gee, the 1600 Crew would never play politics with something as serious as WAR would they? Like hell they wouldn't.

then you look to the right side at the blogroll and find Bulldog Says who is doing some site tweaking, but takes time to mention.... dannyinwisconsin who taking into account that keeping track of Dumya's latest screw-ups takes energy, which means you have to eat, and if you're going to eat, why not a good, but pretty simple BBQ recipe... Memphis BBQ - Ribs of Pig.. Now since I come from the part of the country where declaring one BBQ recipe superior to another can get you into a duel at twenty paces I'll save such judgements. Its darn close to a recipe I use.

They're not called Propaganda Ministers any more, they're called Political Strategist

"It is the absolute right of the State to supervise the formation of public opinion." - Joseph Goebbels

"Think of the press as a great keyboard on which the government can play." - Joseph Goebbels

We enter parliament in order to supply ourselves, in the arsenal of democracy, with its own weapons. If democracy is so stupid as to give us free tickets and salaries for this bear's work, that is its affair. We do not come as friends, nor even as neutrals. We come as enemies. As the wolf bursts into the flock, so we come.- Joseph Goebbels

Why am I reminded of these quotes........Media uncritically reported Rove's false claim that Democrats don't want to eavesdrop on Al Qaeda
In an address at the Republican National Committee's (RNC) winter meeting, White House senior adviser Karl Rove defended President Bush's warrantless domestic surveillance program by making the false claim that "some imporant Democrats clearly disagree" with the proposition that "if Al Qaeda is calling somebody in America, it is in our national security interest to know who they're calling and why." But contrary to Rove's assertion, no important Democrat -- no member of the Democratic leadership in Congress, no Democratic governor, no Democratic party official -- has said that it is not in our interest to know whom Al Qaeda is calling. Rather, the Democratic objections to the wiretapping program are directed at the administration's apparent flouting of the legal requirements governing such surveillance. Nonetheless, numerous media outlets have repeated Rove's claim without challenge.

Dr. Paul Joseph Goebbels (October 29, 1897 ; May 1, 1945) was Adolf Hitler's Propaganda Minister.

Karl Rove (born December 25, 1950) is an American political consultant, and (as of 2005) U.S. President George W. Bush's senior advisor, chief political strategist, and Deputy White House Chief of Staff in charge of policy.

What Was Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia Doing on Day of Supreme Court Swearing-In?
Not only did Scalia's absence appear to be a snub of the new chief justice, but according to some legal ethics experts, it also raised questions about the propriety of what critics call judicial junkets.

Its great that ABC did this story, but where was the MSM when Scalia was hanging out with Dick Cheney. This incident is in addition to the legislative corruption exemplified by Delay and Abramhoff. How nice to also have a culture of corrupted judicial independence on the Supreme Court and there doesn't appear to be anything that can be done about it.

Monday, January 23, 2006

Its looks like the head scroundrel of the attack on America's natural heritage, our man Richard Pombo has a challenger in the next election........Former Congressman To Challenge Richard Pombo
“Winning isn’t the issue. The issue is forcing a debate on which way the Republican Party goes,” McCloskey said. “This guy Pombo, he wants to privatize the remaining public lands in California and he has the power to do it. He’s the chairman of the House Resources Committee. He’s up to his neck with Abramoff.”

Wayne Johnson, a campaign spokesman for Pombo, said McCloskey is out of touch and has no chance of winning the nomination - at least as a Republican.

“We don’t take him seriously as a Republican candidate,” Johnson said. “He’s a stalking horse for the Democratic Party. This is a man who endorsed John Kerry, his campaign staff comes from (Rep.) George Miller,” a Northern California Democrat.

McCloskey, a lawyer in Redwood City, helped write the Endangered Species Act while he was in congress, and he ran for the Republican presidential nomination against Richard Nixon in 1972 on an anti-Vietnam War platform.

By all means don't take McCloskey seriously. While Pombo and his mouthpiece are not taking anything seriously, like ethics and honor, not to mention influence peddling, maybe the public won't notice that Pombo is neck deep in the Republican Culture of Corruption and Special Interests.

By way of David Sirota, Bush Cuts Taxpayers Out of Return on Our Assets
"At a time when energy prices and industry profits are soaring, the federal government collected little more money last year than it did five years ago from the companies that extracted more than $60 billion in oil and gas from publicly owned lands and coastal waters. If royalty payments in fiscal 2005 for natural gas had risen in step with market prices, the government would have received about $700 million more than it actually did, a three-month investigation by The New York Times has found...As a result, the nation's taxpayers, collectively, the biggest owner of American oil and gas reserves, have missed much of the recent energy bonanza....The disparities in gas prices parallel those uncovered just five years ago in a wave of scandals involving royalty payments for oil. From 1998 to 2001, a dozen major companies, while admitting no wrongdoing, paid a total of $438 million to settle charges that they had fraudulently understated their sale prices for oil. Since then, the government has tightened its rules for oil payments. But with natural gas, the Bush administration recently loosened the rules and eased its audits intended to uncover cheating."

Notice the trend, either give away public lands for pennies on the dollar, or let public lands be used and the taxpayers get the shaft when it becomes time to collect a small percentage of the windfall profits earned from those lands by corporate well-fare slackers. Bushonomics equals a twisted corporate socialism. Where's the risk, the entrepreneurship, the competition, and letting the market decide. Its not capitalism, its how rich are you, who do you know on the inside and what levers of conservative power can you pull to get what you want at the expense of people that actually work for a living. Why there are so many good ol boys across the south that support these reverse Robin Hoods who cheat American workers to give to the rich is a mystery.

Sunday, January 22, 2006

Right Whale Found Dead Off Jacksonville Coast
NOAA Fisheries says most of these whales are killed by humans and most of their deaths could be avoided. NOAA is trying to have federal rules passed, speed restrictions and safety zones out in the water that boaters will have to abide by. They say it's the only way to help protect these whales

Delicate Dance for Bush in Depicting Spy Program as Asset procliams this column from NYT.
Americans may be willing to support extraordinary measures - perhaps extralegal ones - if they are posed in the starkest terms of protecting the nation from another calamitous attack. They are less likely to be supportive, members of both parties say, if the question is presented as a president breaking the law to spy on the nation's own citizens.

See its really not that complicated, do you support the concept that this or any president is above the law. This blogger not only supports the presidents divine right not to live up to his oath to defend and protect the constitution but seems to be suffering from creeping fascist paranoia,
In a week where Osama Bin Laden has resurfaced to once more threaten attack on this country, the liberals find themselves protecting Bin Laden’s right to communicate with his forces here in America, and pretending the risk is not Bin Laden, but the fact the liberals are not in power and the Republicans are in power.

What a manly man, he creates this nonexistent strawman and what do you know, he wins. When people either mistate the issue or don't understand it maybe they should just do the honorable thing and keep quiet. The issue is warrantless domestic searches. By all means spy on the bad guys, that is not the issue. As I remember, Bush and Republicans ruled the royal nest on 9-11; so much for the vote for us or you'll die meme, Americans died anyway and we've since heard hundreds of excuses and no real reasons. And why is it that Bush is seen as Mr. Action Figure on terrorism and world wide terror is at an all-time high on his watch. Image is everything I guess.

Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity; and I'm not sure about the universe. - Albert Einstein

Recent fear? I guess the NY Times is trying to refer to 9-11, the most horrific attack on our homeland ever.

I assume this blogger has a foot fetish as he likes having his in his mouth. The assertion by the paranoid blogger is that domestic spying without warrants would have prevented 9-11? Buzzzzz. Sorry he doesn't qualify for the bonus round, Bush Authorized Domestic Spying Before 9/11
The National Security Agency advised President Bush in early 2001 that it had been eavesdropping on Americans during the course of its work monitoring suspected terrorists and foreigners believed to have ties to terrorist groups, according to a declassified document.
......What had long been understood to be protocol in the event that the NSA spied on average Americans was that the agency would black out the identities of those individuals or immediately destroy the information.

But according to people who worked at the NSA as encryption specialists during this time, that's not what happened. On orders from Defense Department officials and President Bush, the agency kept a running list of the names of Americans in its system and made it readily available to a number of senior officials in the Bush administration, these sources said, which in essence meant the NSA was conducting a covert domestic surveillance operation in violation of the law.

James Risen, author of the book State of War and credited with first breaking the story about the NSA's domestic surveillance operations, said President Bush personally authorized a change in the agency's long-standing policies shortly after he was sworn in in 2001.

As a consolation prize, Strata recieves a home version of Bush Shafts the Constitution that he can play in his Mom's basement.

Wolcott on the Tim Man When White America Wants Answers, Tim Russert Coughs Up the Questions
2) Bobby Brown. Whitney Houston. A marriage in turmoil. Any thoughts?

3) If you were down to your last Oreo cookie would you eat it as snack, or throw it at Michael Steele?

Credit where due Is Elusive, Taped Bin Laden Manipulating U.S. Domestic Politics?
In other words, in this view, bin Laden wants the right to start pointing fingers at the left...which will infuriate the left...which will cause another reaction from the right. And no one benefits from bitter polarization, even though it might be beneficial in a given election.

After I heard that a new Bin Laden tape was released I just waited for the other shoe to drop, somehow the far-right extremists would use it against Democrats. Silly, but dangerous, it may serve their short term goals of distracting attention from the corruption scandals, the NSA mess, Bush's unashamed attack on the Constitution, and may help them stem some loses in the 2006 elections, but what about the country in the long run. Things seem to simmer down for a week here and there, then its back to the attack.

The anger over Chris Matthews’ comment that Osama bin Laden in his new video sounds like Michael Moore, and the resulting campaign demanding that Matthews apologize, arises from much more than a single comment, and has little to do with Moore himself. The Matthews smear illustrates the fact that it has become routine in our national political dialogue, and among our nation's journalists, to equate opposition to George Bush with subversiveness, treason, and support for Al Qaeda....

This tactic of equating Democrats with bin Laden is designed to eliminate dissent and to stigmatize Bush’s opponents as traitors. That the GOP has transparently wielded this tactic almost from the moment the airplanes crashed into the World Trade Center is reprehensible enough. But it is simply no longer tolerable for the media – which was intended to serve as a Fourth Estate check against government propaganda of this type – to continue to be the primary instrument for the dissemination of this smear.

There are few things more important than combating this notion, so prevalent among the Chris Matthews of the world, that opposing George Bush is tantamount to supporting Al Qaeda, or relatedly, that it's perfectly acceptable to equate Bush opponents with bin Laden but it is terribly crass - even treasonous - to aggressively criticize the President.

Michael Moore to me seems like part entertainer-part documentarian with a point of view, CHRIS MATTHEWS AND OSAMA BIN LADEN -- A "SPECIAL" FRIENDSHIP, I think the righties get too worked up about him. He must have struck a nreve or two. Its not Michael's fault, or Howard Dean's, or John Kerry's fault that Bush made Iraq a priority over catching OBL. The far right doesn't just control all three branches of government, they own most of the media. If you want to get an opinion of a center left pundit you really have to search it out. My cable system has plenty of right leaning pundits on it, including the Faux round-up, the 700 Club ( its more about ideology and money then saving souls), my local paper has 5 opinion columists, four of them various degress of far right. So it seems that bloggers like this are fighting terrorism from the safety of their over stuffed desk chairs directing more of their enegy and hatred at Bush's critics then at terrorists. Still can't figure out why this guy isn't in Iraq, he's not putting too much effort into his blog, his posts consists of the same boiler plate brainless blood thirst you can read in the comments section of any neo-nazi site.
The Political Tike or whatever certainly echoes Hitler's words:
The great strength of the totalitarian state is that it forces those who fear it to imitate it.

What luck for rulers, that men do not think.

At least this denizen of the blog gutter of political opinion admits that he lives in a nut house.
I realize that introspection is not a liberal’s long suit. Looking in a mirror and facing facts would require a modicum of humility and a desire to understand the real-world consequences of one’s rhetoric and ideas.

maybe the Nut-House pundit needs to look outward, his "ideas" have been passed around before:
Loyalty not only in deed, but in character is demanded of you. Loyalty of character often demands no less heroic virtue than does loyalty in deed. Loyalty in character is unbreakable loyalty, a loyalty that knows no ifs or buts, that knows no weakening, Loyalty in character means absolute obedience that does not question the results of the order nor its reasons, but rather obeys for the sake of obedience itself. Such obedience is an expression of heroic character when following the order leads to personal disadvantage or seems even to contradict one's personal convictions. Adolf Hitler's strength as a leader is that he almost always works through the power of his persuasion; rarely does he command. He must know, however, that when he commands, or allows a command to be given, that it will be obeyed absolutely, down to the last block warden.

Mr. Nutty would like us all to bear not alligence to America, but like Rudolf Hess did in the above tribute to Hitler, he and his right-wing ilk wants us all to swear alligence to The Leader Bush. No thoughts are allowed, no writing permitted, no newspaper circulated that does not pay tribute to the incurious failure in the Whitehouse that has let Al Queda grow and let Bin laden get away.

This echo, and I call him that because apparently they all gotthe same fax with the same talikng points very much thinks everyone left of Mussolini is wrong to be the least upset about being compared to a true sociopath like Bin Laden. I'm not sure what he's getting at, "moral equality"? Let's just blame the public school system.
Now, we wouldn’t be foolish enough to think that was a statement of moral equality, would we? In fact, we would know, if we were honest, that it was a statement about the rhetorical points of emphasis that Hitler hit in his speech. Similarly, when Chris Matthews made his statement, I think that clearly this was the sort of thing he meant…judge for yourself, of course, but to me, this is a perfect example of the false outrage that is so prevalent these days. We just look for things to get upset about, don’t we?…

Yep, lets out get upset about the creeping fascism.

The conservative movement’s transformation into pseudo-fascism isn’t immediately discernible because there’s nothing recognizably exceptional about any single aspect of it. Indeed, most of it seems all too familiar.
Part of the problem, of course, is that we’ve come to think of fascism as primarily a European phenomenon. That’s partly because fascism reflects the respective national identity of the nations where it arises; Nazism, for instance, was full of Germanic symbolism, and Italian fascism likewise suggested its national heritage. Its appearance in America, as such, will have little immediate resemblance to those earlier permutations.
Another reason it’s unlikely to be recognized is that part of the mythology that has sprung up around fascism is that it is dead – that it died in that Berlin bunker in 1945. But as reader
Dante M writes:
Classical fascism is dead, and has been for a long time, despite the fevered wishes of skinheads and American Nazi Party members. But ?fascism? as an ideology remains: it’s the Devil of the 20th Century, and its best trick was fooling people into thinking it doesn’t exist anymore, or that it was defeated in 1945, or that they’d know it when they see it (propaganda is another boogeyman that people are confident that they recognize on sight, even though the best propaganda never gets seen for what it is). Maybe fascism is a natural human reaction to hard times – a push for the certainty that is so missing from modern (and postmodern) life: People. Nation. Leader.

Not much in the way of leaders, a guy that sit reading My Pet Goat while America had the worst attack on its soil since WWII. Just as Bin laden was and is hoping to end America's freedom, so do George and his minions. We must all remain silent according to indecision 08, to question our dear dear ruler is too much like what people do in a democracy.
Robert O. Paxton, in his landmark study The Anatomy of Fascism, neatly sums up the place of fascism in the history of politics as the emergence of a “dictatorship against the Left amidst popular enthusiasm.” But what are its guiding principles?
In reality, there really are none. Fascism in the end is the manifestation, in the context of modern mass politics, of the raw will to power, the drive to achieve totalitarian control over others through any means necessary or possible. But fascism is more than just a reaction or untrammeled will. It is a political force with a distinct set of characteristics.

Today its just silly immature semi-fascists on the internet, who know very little about history or the foundations of democracy ( democracy is in fact a liberal invention ). Tommorrow what will it be. We have a president who thinks a democratic document, the consitution gives give kingly powers. The doublespeak, to anyone that cares to pay attention could make your head spin with all the contraditions.
Fascism demands racial, ethnic, or cultural unity and the collective rebirth of a nation
while seeking to purge demonized enemies that are often scapegoated as subversive
and parasitic. Fascism is a form of authoritarian ultra-nationalism that glorifies ac-
tion, violence, and a militarized culture. Fascism can exist as an ideology, a mass
movement, or a form of state government. Fascism attacks both liberal democratic
pluralism and left-wing revolutionary movements while proposing a totalitarian ver-
sion of populist mass politics. Fascism parasitizes other ideologies, juggles many
internal tensions and contradictions, and produces chameleon-like adaptations based
on the specific historic symbols,
icons, slogans, traditions, myths, and heroes of the
society it wishes to mobilize.

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