Wednesday, May 31, 2006

The "Mind" of the Left; Racism Projection

Xoff, head honcho of a shadowy Leftist interest group electioneering for BagmanJim, shows his intellectual prowess.

Yup. He goes right to the name-calling.

Some of us happen to think that there is a legitimate interest in the immigration status of criminals--particularly murderers. The Left doesn't want to think about that. We could conclude that the Left merely doesn't want to think in the first place. That's possible.

A better possibility is that the Left has an interest in burying information which is pertinent, especially as the House and Senate meet to (perhaps) write immigration legislation.

Sure wouldn't want ALL the facts out there, would we?

Xoff's post demonstrates the psychological affliction of Projection. He, like other members of the Left, think in terms of race because they are busy assembling blocs of races for political purposes.

On the other hand, Americans think in terms of the nation as a whole. National interest, public interest--stuff like that.

This reflex-namecalling of the Left will become prominent as the Marriage Amendment moves to center-stage here in Wisconsin. Opponents of Queer Marriage will be termed "homophobes." That makes them just like House members who oppose Amnesty; or thinking individuals who simply like to have ALL the facts at hand before rendering a judgment.

Shock! The Killer's an Illegal

WISN/1130 reports the news (but not the surprise) that the South Shore Park shooter is an illegal.

S'pose amnesty will apply?

...and Da WINNAH!!

...c'est moi!!

MKE Online's Blog of the Week winner, 5/18/06!


Straw Buyers

Whenever one buys a handgun through a dealer, which is the vast majority of purchases, one of the questions on the REQUIRED FORM is "Are you purchasing this weapon for (on belhalf of) another person?"

The question is aimed at Straw Buyers--those who have a clean record, and the cash, required to purchase a weapon, but who may be then transferring it to an individual who does NOT have a clean record, and is unable to purchase weapons from dealers.

The last time this issue arose, I visited Badger and asked a few questions. The answers were exactly the same as they are today.

Beatovic said his store on S. 43rd St. isn't part of the problem. He said he often testifies in court cases, opens his records to detectives and frequently calls police to arrest people trying to buy guns illegally.

"We are not the bad guys, damn it. I don't care what those numbers say," he said.

Badger could change its inventory mix and sell weapons whose list prices exceed, say, $500.00, such as H&K, Springfield Armory, Beretta, S&W, Glock...but that sort of policy flies in the face of realities; for openers, those list prices generally apply only to new-in-box pistols. What about used guns? They would be giving away that marketplace to other retailers, and bear in mind that gun shops are a lot like car dealerships--the real profits are in the used-items sales (and parts and accessories, such as bullets, targets, etc.)

Badger could also refuse to sell guns to certain "types" of people, and lose a hell of a large lawsuit for discriminatory practice. Not a good idea. Beyond that, what about the folks who ARE law-abiding types and who simply want self-protection?

Ester Hodges comes to mind.

A retired construction worker, she was quick to call police when trouble erupted on her 4300 block of W. Garfield St., making repeated efforts to have one particular house declared a nuisance.

When the police hosted a community action meeting last month, she was in attendance, vocal as ever.

...Hodges got her gun, which she kept for protection. Shortly afterward, a fight broke out. By the time it was over, Hodges had been shot in the stomach.

On Sunday, Hodges was in the intensive care unit of Froedtert Memorial Lutheran Hospital in Wauwatosa while police investigated.

What shall Badger tell Ester (and the hundreds of others like her)? "Tough cookies?" "Run away?" "Lay back and enjoy it?" "Renew your Health Insurance?"

Badger sells legitimately, but some of their customers are liars. Maybe Tom Barrett, with his Congressional experience, can help Badger in discerning who's lying.

But I doubt it.

Don't Like Illegal Immigration? You May Be a Skinhead

The Washington DC 'elite' gang simply does not like people who oppose illegal immigration. Various members of the wine-and-brie crowd have described opponents of illegal immigration as 'yahoos,' 'nativists,' and 'vigilantes.'

That's nothing. Time magazine is loading the guns now t0 call those opponents the neo-Nazis.

...protest illegal immigration, and it becomes an occasion for the media to find every faction and fraction of the Klan and the Nazis. Time's Jeffrey Ressner became this week's publicity agent for liberal "anti-hate" groups. The headline was "Rousing the Zealots: Neo-Nazis, white supremacists and militiamen are revivified by the furor over illegal immigration."

And which Lefty bunch is feeding Time this line?

"The immigration furor has been critical to the growth we've seen" in hate groups, says Mark Potok, head of the Intelligence Project at the Southern Poverty Law Center.

Ressner added: "In addition to white supremacists, the immigration debate seems to have reinvigorated members of the antigovernment militias of the 1990s.

Surprise, surprise.

Tuesday, May 30, 2006


From EveTushnet:

When the serpent tempts Eve, she doesn't turn to God. She doesn't even run! She thinks she can face down the Devil by herself, by the power of her reason and will. And so she fails. Don't ever get in a staring contest with the Devil.

South Shore Park--An Illegal Alien?

Not much is publicly-known about the South Shore Park attempted-massacre, yet.

One question of interest: was the shooter an Illegal Alien?

Sykes mentions that HIS sources in the Cop Shop advise "the shooter is headed for a Foreign Country."

Monday, May 29, 2006

Levin Blasts Kristol

Bill Kristol, whose crinkly (or smarmy) smile occasionally makes the FoxNews discussions with Brit Hume, is a controversial character.

Mark Levin presents two divergent views of the Immigration Issue--one from an Indiana congressman, the other from Kristol.

It's fair to say that Levin is not too impressed with Kristol's blessing of the Senate's S2611 abomination:

Certain Republican elites think they have the pulse of the conservative movement, but they don’t. In fact, many of them have never been active in the conservative movement. They often throw around Ronald Reagan’s name, having never campaigned for him in either 1976 or 1980, as if they share both his ideology and courage. They don’t realize that they’ve become part of the Republican establishment that Reagan fought most of his political life. And they look down on talk radio (except when they’re trying to hawk their books) because they look down on the grassroots. Talk radio is far more engaged with and responsive to the conservative base than those holed up in office buildings writing for others who are holed up in office buildings. And so the intensity of opposition from conservatives and many, many other Americans to the cynical ethnic pandering and dangerous open-borders viewpoint by the administration and the Senate is condescendingly dismissed as coming from a bunch of “yahoos.” (Here .) They arrogantly attack the very people whose views they claim to represent.

I am reminded of Savage's description of certain NeoCons: "red-diaper babies"...

GKChesterton: Truth, Pity, Governments, and Fanatics

Gilbert! magazine is a semi-scholarly publication issued six times/year; it's the magazine of the American Chesterton Society. The April/May issue has some articles of interest which seem to be related.

"The real evil of our social estate is not so much that nothing is being done for the people; a great deal is being done. The real evil is that nothing (literally, nothing) is being done by the people.
...they have no organ by which to control government. It is easy enough to say that the costermonger can vote; but what for? He is allowed at rare intervals to vote for one of two highly disputable theories of some very distant question...

...But this is the great curse of modern reform; we merrily spread the habits of wealth, and call them the necessities of civilization. (GKC, 3/12/10)

While the excerpted essay was written about divorce (some British Government commission was conducting hearings on that topic at the time,) the thoughts apply in other venues--we could talk about the WI Supreme Court's derogation of "lawful purpose" in preventing self-defense for those who do not live in comfortable suburbs, for example.

Reviewing a book, Catholic Worker Movement: Intellectual and Spiritual Origins (Paulist Press, M & L Zwick, co-authors,) Dale Ahlquist compares GKChesterton with Dorothy Day.

Day is viewed with suspicion by both the Left and the Right; by the Left because in the end she foreswore Communism, and by the Right because at one time she had been sympathetic with Communism. In the end, Dorothy Day was a Catholic, which earned her the disdain of both the Left AND the Right.

"In the case of conservatives, what has hurt Dorothy Day is her spotty past...which she deeply regretted. But...what happens before one's conversion must never be forgiven. This helps conservatives turn a blind eye toward the unseemly conditions of the Chesterton's words, 'their Truth is pitiless.'

"In the case of liberals, what has hurt Dorothy Day is what happened after her death. Some of the Catholic Worker houses she founded...have neglected the "Catholic" part...Their strength is mere activism...abortion has been the preferred method of dealing with crisis pregnancy, and Catholic moral teachings...on homosexuality is studiously ignored. ...'their Pity is untruthful.'"

It is true today, as well...

Were the above comments all the magazine contained, it would be worth the $5.50 price. But in addition, Fr. James Schall, S.J., contributes an article on "Fanaticism" which serves, in a way, as a capstone.

Fr. Schall tells us that he was looking for a Tolstoy book, and found an essay on Tolstoy by GKC in the process. In the essay, Chesterton mentioned "Enthusiasm," "...which meant, in the eighteenth century, the condition of a lunatic, and in ancient Greece, the presence of a god."

Schall goes on to reference Josef Pieper's take on the word 'enthusiasm' ---in the Platonic/Greek sense of "having our world open to more than nature or our own constructions," and then Schall mentions Ronald Knox's application of the term to "movements that went beyond the normal, something that could undermine any social or religious order."

"Chesterton, for his part, sees...utter logical consistency, the meticulous carrying out of a principle...[as] what is wrong..."

"Already for a half century before his time, Chesterton noted something that is very common today, namely the view that religion is the origin of 'Fanaticism.' ...The irony of this view, however, is that getting rid of religion will not get rid of Fanaticism. Scientists and politicians, Chesterton thought, are just as capable of being 'Fanatics,' as priests, maybe more so.

"[In the case Tolstoy mentions, the Doukhnabors] 'A sect of men starts with no theology at all, but with the simple doctrine that we ought to love our neighbor and use no force against him, and they end in thinking that it is wicked to carry a leather handbag or to ride in a horse-driven cart.'

"Of Tolstoy, ...'A great modern writer who erases theology altogether, denies the validity of Scripture and the Churches alike, forms a purely ethical theory that love should be the instrument of reform, and ends by maintaining that we have no right to strike a man if he is torturing a child before our very eyes.'

Both of these examples of real Fanaticism remain with us today.

"'Fanaticism has nothing at all to do with religion,' Chesterton affirms.

'[Tolstoy] is not a mystic and therefore he has a tendency to go mad.'

"This passage recalls Chesterton's discussion of the Maniac...a man with one idea according to which he sees all else in a distorted light. 'Men talk of the extravagances and frenzies that have been produced by mysticism; they are a mere drop in the bucket. In the main, and from the beginning of time, mysticism has kept men sane.'

"[Chesterton] chastised the Augustinians and Platonists for their withdrawal from things to contemplate The One as if they could not also find The One through particular things which after all, originated in The One.

"'The thing that has driven them mad (that is, the Fanatics) was logic.'...The only thing that has kept the race of men from the mad extremes...has been mysticism--the belief that logic is misleading, and that things are not what they seem.'"

Schall concludes: "Common sense does not eschew logic as such. But it does see that at the origin of things is a Reality Whose ways are not our ways. This is what the mystic also sees. It is the Fanatic who does not see this limitation, but chooses to follow the logic of his position even when it leads him to absurdity. Things are, and can be known. But likewise, things "are not what they seem." We did not create them and must be prepared to find in them more than we could imagine."

One hestitates to refer to this issue of Gilbert! as "thematic." But the excerpts assembled above, taken together, speak a loosely-unified message: that "Truth deficient in Pity," or "Pity deficient in Truth" are both Fanaticisms, as is Government without the mysteriously mystic input of the People.

Sunday, May 28, 2006

Worth Repeating/Hat Tip To McMahon

Stolen from Tom McMahon's blogspot:

An old Indian Chief sat in his hut on the reservation, smoking a ceremonial pipe and eyeing two U. S. Government officials sent to interview him. "Chief Two Eagles" asked one Official, "You have observed the white man for 90 years. You've seen his wars and his technological advances. You've seen his progress, and the damage he's done." The Chief nodded in agreement.
The Official continued, "Considering all these events, in your opinion, where did the white man go wrong?"

The Chief stared at the Government Officials for over a minute and then calmly replied, "When white man found the land, Indians were running it. No taxes. No debt. Plenty buffalo. Plenty beaver. Women did all the work. Medicine man free. Indian man spent all day hunting and fishing, all night having sex."

Then the Chief leaned back and smiled, "Only white man dumb enough to think he could improve system like that."

Lots more worth reading over there, too...

Poster for Screechin'Shirley, Queen of Hearts

For the Chief Justice of the WI Supremes, this poster.

Mommy Shirley, May I? Pretty Please??

There are other excellent posters at the link, and even more where they came from (linked in the blogpost.)

She Did What? WHERE??

In the Police Reports section:

A 46-year-old woman was given a ticket alleging disorderly conduct in the 14700 block of W. Capitol Drive at 3:30 p.m. May 16. She was observed urinating on the side of the road.

Not the run-of-the-mill police call.

Xoff Can't Explain This

Our favorite lefty spinner, Xoff, just KNOWS that the locus of evil in the modern world (after the Republicans) is the NRA. They have guns; they USE the guns.

But the 54,000 (NRA's own tally) attendees at their annual convention have left town.

So what's to account for this headline in the Milwaukee JS?

2 killed, 9 injured in weekend shootings (5/28/06)

Lies, Damned Lies, and Engineering Grads

Everyone "just KNOWS" the numbers:

"Last year more than 600,000 engineers graduated from institutions ofhigher education in China," the report stated. "In India the figure was 350,000. In America, it was about 70,000." To dramatize the seriousness of the issue, the academies titled the 543-page report"Rising Above the Gathering Storm," an allusion to Winston Churchill's book "The Gathering Storm," about events leading up toWorld War II.

That's what the Committee on Science, Engineering and Public Policy, a joint group from the National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering and Institute of Medicine (which, with the NationalResearch Council, are collectively known as the National Academies) [said.]

Naturally, given this lofty pedigree, the statistics then materialized in the New York Times, Boston Globe, Chicago Tribune and on many Web sites. While Times columnist Thomas L. Friedman did not use these specific numbers in his 2005 bestseller, "The World Is Flat," he did write that Asian universities currently produce eight times as many bachelor's degrees in engineering as U.S. universities do.

Well, after a LOT of "further review" by the WSJ, the Christian Science Monitor, and others, it turns out that the numbers are simply false.

After an exhaustive study, researchers at Duke University also pummeled the numbers. In a December 2005 analysis, "Framing the Engineering Outsourcing Debate," they reported that the United States annually produces 137,437 engineers with at least a bachelor's degree while India produces 112,000 and China 351,537. That's more U.S. degrees per million residents than in either other nation.

(Gerald Bracey via Norm Matloff)

Saturday, May 27, 2006

Esenberg Slays Screechin'Shirley, Queen of Hearts

You may have noticed that I didn't think too highly of Screechin'Shirley's asinine "ruling" on concealed weapons.

Esenberg, in a more refined way, makes the same point:

Given our constitution's guarantee of the right to keep and bear arms, you might ask, how can this be?

The answer lies in the creativity of clever lawyers, with which our judiciary is well populated. Rather than give full force and effect to the constitution's recognition of a right to bear arms for "any other lawful purpose," a majority of the justices have read the litany of specific reasons for the right to bear arms (i.e., for "security, defense," etc.) as restrictions on the right.

The threshold for the reasonable need of a concealed weapon for security purposes seems very high. The court hasn't said that you basically have to be a store owner in Little Beirut with the convocation of street gangs from the 1979 street noir classic "The Warriors" being re-enacted outside your window, but one does get the sense that unless you've recently had a drive-by, you are not yet in enough danger.

What I am suggesting is that the state Supreme Court has taken what is specified in our constitution as a right and turned it into a privilege. It has not done so by a technical application of lawyerly skills that only trained professionals could understand (and of which, therefore, can be the only critics) but by a cramped and less than obvious reading of a fairly simple English sentence.

To repeat: the Court has so ruled. Now let THEM enforce it.

Hastert's "Immunity," Bush's "Seal" and Gonzales

Well, the fun's just beginning.

Hastert and Boehner (along with the alleged criminal Jefferson) and the Twit of the Senate, Frist, claim that Congressional offices are off-limits to Executive Branch investigators during a criminal investigation, regardless of blessing by a Court.


So Bush, ever ready to prostitute himself and the REST of this country to anyone who says "OWIE!! That Hurts!!", orders the evidence sealed (and kept on Funk & Wagnall's porch, we presume.) He ordered the boys to take a Time Out so the AG and Hastert can settle down.

But that may not be the whole story. Apparently GWB first thought that those nasty FBI bullies should give the evidence back to the alleged criminal.

Whereupon Gonzales and Mueller (FBI) told GlobaloneyGeorge that they would resign, immediately, were he to so order.

Let's have a poll here: is LAURA Bush running this country?

Hastert Dumps ALL OVER Cheney & Bush: Novak

Denny Hastert's recent hissy-fit over "Congressional Immunity" may be personal, not professional.

Here's an interesting tidbit not reported by the MSM (surprise...)

House Speaker J. Dennis Hastert, a 64-year-old ex-high school wrestling coach, ordinarily is not a shouter. But according to Capitol Hill sources, he engaged in a high decibel rant last week when he met with Vice President Dick Cheney. The speaker was enraged by the sacking of his friend and former colleague, Porter Goss.

Hastert was so vituperative that a private session with President George W. Bush in the living quarters of the White House was scheduled immediately (although Hastert aides said the meeting had been planned previously). The speaker toned down his volume on the hallowed ground and did more listening than talking. But the president did not slake Hastert's wrath over the abrupt sacking of Goss as CIA director.

That wrath reflects the feeling in the House Republican cloakroom that Goss, who gave up a safe congressional seat from Florida for a thankless cleanup mission at the CIA, is being made a scapegoat for the government's intelligence mess. But Hastert's discontent goes beyond the CIA. The GOP mood on Capitol Hill, particularly the House, is poisonous. With pessimism rising over a contemplated loss of their majority in the 2006 elections, Republican lawmakers blame their parlous condition on Bush's performance.


Correctly or not, the treatment of Goss has caused speculation in Congress that Bush is making a peace offering to his critics at Langley. A president waging a global war against terror can hardly function with an intelligence agency whose employees make off-the-record speeches against his policies, contribute to his political opponents and leak secrets to the news media. Was getting rid of Goss the equivalent of a white flag of surrender?

Such interpretations suggest that there is basically non-communication between Bush and fellow Republicans in Congress.

Well, no kidding!! Tony Snow's stupid "speeding ticket" remarks would be ONE hint...

Se, NON Puede, Jim

Jim Sensenbrenner thinks that he can negotiate a reconciliation between the House and Senate versions of Immigration reform.

Good luck, Jim.

Hagel-Martinez (S2611) is best described as a Monster-Government-Enabling-Bill; it's a politically-driven pig of a bill which does NOT achieve border security. It DOES, however, grant amnesty, establish rights for immigrants which exceed the rights of current US citizens--and IS blessed by none other than Ted Kennedy and Jimmuh Carter.

It will be interesting to watch Sensenbrenner's strategy unfold; but my suspicion accords with Limbaugh's: Immigration Reform is dead, dead, dead this year.

BagManJim Doyle--What A Jack...

Doyle is earning another soubriquet: "Dr. No!"

NO! to sensible pier legislation.

"We're not going after anyone's piers. . . . My executive order is consistent with the compromise we worked out," Doyle said We'll see, eh?

NO! to Health Savings Account tax incentives.

Doyle vetoed the bill on health savings accounts, as he has before, on the grounds that it helped the wealthy at the expense of low- and middle-income families Pure crap, Jimbo. HSA's will be established for "low- and middle-income families" when Wisconsin tax law comports with Federal tax law. Already there are several thousand UFCW members with HRA's (yes, the plan is different from an HSA.) Jimbo--meet the 21st Century...

NO! to requiring citizenship papers to obtain State benefits.

Wisconsin law is already clear that they cannot receive benefits, [Doyle] said, and a federal law taking effect July 1 will require both identification and documentation of citizenship from those seeking benefits. Then I'm sure that your State employees will carefully observe the law, right?

NO! to Legislative input on casinos (which will set up a bidding-war with campaign contributions.)

Doyle said the bill ran counter to federal law, even though some states give their legislatures a voice in siting casinos. When Doyle was attorney general, he supported legislative oversight of casinos. Pure, unadulterated self-interest. I know. Blanchard's in your pocket. Not to worry.

NO! to reporting the results of his "efficiency drive" in State Gummint.

Doyle called the report unnecessary Which means that your "savings" claims are likely BS.

January's Inauguration Day looks SOOOOO good...

Tony Snow on Speed

Poor Tony. He has to come up with witticisms and analogies to make the case for S2611 (Hagel-Martinez.)

But he'll have to do better than this:

The White House on Friday said a Senate bill that would grant legal status to illegal immigrants is analogous to a traffic law that allows a speeder to pay a fine and continue driving.

"If you had a traffic ticket and you paid it, you're not forever a speeder, are you?" White House Press Secretary Tony Snow said in response to questions from The Examiner.

Uhhh---Tony---did White House Counsel advise you that civil and criminal law are interchangeable? If so, you have a malpractice claim.

You just made Jim Sensenbrenner's case: it IS AMNESTY. "Not forever" is a key phrase, Tony.


Sent by a close relative:

My Mom used to cut chicken, chop eggs and spread mayo on the same cutting board with the same knife and no bleach, but we didn't seem to get food poisoning. My Mom used to defrost hamburger on the counter AND I used to eat it raw sometimes, too. Our school sandwiches were wrapped in wax paper in a brown paper bag, not in icepack coolers, but I can't remember getting e.coli .

Almost all of us would have rather gone swimming in the lake instead of a pristine pool (talk about boring), no beach closures then. The term cell phone would have conjured up a phone in a jail cell, and a pager was the school PA system.

We all took gym, not PE... and risked permanent injury with a pair of high top Ked's (only worn in gym) instead of having cross-training athletic shoes with air cushion soles and built in light reflectors. I can't recall any injuries but they must have happened because they tell us how much safer we are now.. Flunking gym was not an option... even for stupid kids! I guess PE must be much harder than gym.

Speaking of school, we all said prayers and sang the national anthem, and staying in detention after school caught all sorts of negative attention. We must have had horribly damaged psyches.

What an archaic health system we had then. Remember school nurses? Ours wore a hat and everything. I thought that I was supposed to accomplish something before I was allowed to be proud of myself.

I just can't recall how bored we were without computers, Play Station, Nintendo, X-box or 270 digital TV cable stations.

Oh yeah... and where was the Benadryl and sterilization kit when I got that bee sting? I could have been killed!

We played 'king of the hill' on piles of gravel left on vacant construction sites, and when we got hurt, Mom pulled out the 48-cent bottle of Mercurochrome (kids liked it better because it didn't sting like iodine did) and then we got our butt spanked. Now it's a trip to the emergency room, followed by a 10-day dose of a $49 bottle of antibiotics, and then Mom calls the attorney to sue the contractor for leaving a horribly vicious pile of gravel where it was such a threat.

We didn't act up at the neighbor's house either because if we did, we got our butt spanked there and then we got butt spanked again when we got home. I recall Donny Reynolds from next door coming over and doing his tricks on the front stoop, just before he fell off. Little did his Mom know that she could have owned our house. Instead, she picked him up and swatted him for being such a goof. It was a neighborhood run amuck.

To top it off, not a single person I knew had ever been told that they were from a dysfunctional family. How could we possibly have known that? We needed to get into group therapy and anger management classes? We were obviously so duped by so many societal ills, that we didn't even notice that the entire country wasn't taking Prozac! How did we ever survive?

By my count, at least half of the changes articulated above are the result of ambulance-chasers and/or Mommy-May-I Legislators.

In 20 years, parents will have to explain "McDonald's" and "Burger King" to their tykes, too.

Friday, May 26, 2006

Jim Doyle Screws the Taxpayers--Again!

Pretty soon he'll run out of new ways to clean Wisconsin taxpayers--or perhaps drive all the taxpayers OUT of the State. The 7-county Milwaukee area saw a net outflow of wealth recently; no reason that the rest of the State should be different.

THIS time, BagManJim decided that applicants for Wisconsin social services do NOT have to demonstrate that they are citizens of the USA. Just walk in and get bennies!! No Problem-o!!

We're absolutely sure that various church-based charities would provide, if necessary--so why should the State?

Because it's only taxpayer money, that's why.

Thanks, BagMan. What'll you be doing in January, anyway?

First Things

C S Lewis, via Laudator Temporis Acti:

The sun looks down on nothing half so good as a household laughing together over a meal, or two friends talking over a pint of beer, or a man alone reading a book that interests him; and . . . all economics, politics, laws, armies, and institutions, save insofar as they prolong and multiply such scenes, are a mere ploughing of the sand and sowing of the ocean, a meaningless vanity and vexation of the spirit.

Sometimes it's good to be reminded of wisdom.

Memorial Day

Arlington National Cemetery, Winter (HT Malkin.)

Be slowly lifted up, thou long black arm,
Great gun towering toward Heaven, about to curse,
Reach at that Arrogance which needs thy harm,
And beat it down before its sins grow worse;
But when thy spell be cast complete and whole,
May God curse thee, and cut thee from our soul!
(Wilfred Owen)

Rayburn Office Building--Well Equipped!!

A "shots fired" report came from the Rayburn Office Building of the US House of Representatives this morning. No one hurt as of posting time...

MOST interesting part of the story was that the ROB has a "firing range" in a sub-basement level.

Next time you visit your Congresscritter, ask if you, too, can use the range--or if that's reserved for Powdered Princelings Who Are Immune From Criminal Investigations.

Jessica's New Direction?

Jessica McBride is pretty good at picking apart the local MSM's reporting, and has a solid grasp of the REST of the social malaise. But on her blogsite this morning, we see the (below) picture of a "Bean Soup" evidently concocted from a recipe linked under the picture.

Is this some sort of subliminal signal? (Can we be more alliterative?) Is Jessica migrating to nutrition and condimental issues?

Where's OUR Jessica??

A Two-fer

SOME residents in Milwaukee have quite a deal going in their Aldermanic representation:

Two for One.

They get a guy with two names, two Social Security numbers, two drivers' licenses, at least two close-personal-friends-of-the-female-persuasion---

All for the price of one.

BONUS: the rest of the Greater Milwaukee area gets free entertainment!!

Aurora Inflation Generator Coming Soon

Some judge ruled that (in effect) Aurora may build its new Health-Care-Cost-Inflation-Building in Oconomowoc.

Think that sentence is a bit inflammatory? Then run these numbers through your calculator, Shirley:

Original proposed cost: $85MM (2001)

Cost quoted today: $166MM (2006)

Change in cost: $81MM+

Annual Aurora Inflation of Hospital Building Cost: 19.058%

State Employees: We Make Up For It In Cost

Here's a cute line:

The state's work force is already among the leanest in the country, said Cathy Rought, spokeswoman for American Federation of Teachers-Wisconsin. Census figures show that nationally there are 70 residents for each state employee, and in Wisconsin there are 79 people for each state employee, she said.

OK. But Cathy, Wisconsin's cost-per-State-employee is near the highest in the universe--that's the problem.

Thursday, May 25, 2006

Spanish-American War Debt Paid; IRS To Quit Collecting Tax


That's today's good news.

The Internal Revenue Service today announced that it will stop collecting the federal excise tax on long-distance telephone service.

The tax on telephone services was first imposed in 1898. The current rate is 3% of the charges billed for these services. The IRS announcement follows decisions in five federal appeals courts holding that the tax does not apply to long-distance service as it is billed today.

(It took FIVE appeals rulings to get these guys off the dime, as it were...)

Taxpayers will be eligible to file for refunds of all excise tax they have paid on long-distance service billed to them after Feb. 28, 2003. Interest will be paid on these refunds.

Taxpayers will claim this refund on their 2006 tax returns. In order to minimize burden, the IRS expects to announce soon a simplified method that individuals may use.

So taxpayers wont have to spend time digging through old telephone bills, were designing a straightforward process that taxpayers may use when they file their tax returns next year, said IRS Commissioner Mark W. Everson. Claiming a refund will be simple and fair.

The IRS announcement does not affect the federal excise tax on local telephone service, which remains in effect. Likewise, various state and local taxes and fees paid by telephone customers are also unaffected.

Source: IRS Email Listserver

Rush Gets the Snow Job

Tony Snow was interviewed on the Limbaugh program today. It would be interesting to know who thought who was the spider, or fly...

Limbaugh certainly did not give Snow a free pass on the Senate's "Immigration" bill; he was quite aggressive in mentioning its flaws. On the other hand, Rush didn't have all the numbers handy, I suppose.

Snow absolutely ACED Rush on the "employers of illegals" question. Limbaugh mentioned that enforcement simply has been lax, at best, to date. Snow gave him some runaround about "reading the papers and noticing all the companies which have been raided" lately.

Yah, Tony. About TWO have been in the papers. Snow simply ignores the fact that enforcement numbers are down by 90+% since Simpson-Mazzoli was passed, and Rush didn't have the numbers.

What was really cute was that Snow told Rush that 'employer enforcement' would occur because one private enterprise would tattle on another (who may/may not be employing illegals.) Really, Tony?

As Jessica points out, INS doesn't even bother to pick up an illegal when he's listed in the phone book and clearly ID'd as an illegal.

Tony also stated that the President wants to put the National Guard on the border "in two weeks." Well, two weeks have passed since GWB put the proposal on the table, and we don't see 6,000 troops down there.

Snow also yapped about how the President wants to increase the Border Patrol's numbers, conveniently forgetting that the President, when given the money by Congress specifically for that purpose, did not spend it.

Yah, Tony. Snow job it was.

Abp Weakland STILL At It

...dissent, that is.

Sadly, Abp Weakland was asked to speak at the recent priests' gathering out in Lake Geneva (or wherever resort.)

As the acutely observant "Mike" points out, ol' Rembert still manages to sow his seeds:

There is but one Christ. Paul is upset with the Corinthians where one says he is baptized by Apollo, another says he is baptized by Paul. He finds that kind of designation divisive. (Is it wise today to say - as I heard someone say the other day on EWTN - I am a Pope-John-Paul-II Catholic?) quoth Rembert.

Like Mike, I ask whether the term "in union with the Pope" is familiar to Rembert...

Or how about this one:

Besides, argued Weakland, the church can reinterpret the meaning of the sacraments over the ages. When confirmation got out of the original sequence in the fourth century, he asked, "could this not have been under the guidance of the Spirit? Could this not have been an enrichment of our sacramental system and a logical evolution?"

Yah, maybe. And maybe it's JUST as logical to move Confirmation back to where it was. Moreover, the imprecision of the phrase "...can reinterpret the meaning of the Sacraments..." is serious. The Church cannot change the meaning of the Sacraments, although there is some room for changes in emphasis. Thus the migration of Confirmation from co-incident-with-Baptism to around the age of 12, then around the age of 16 (as is current here in 2006.)

But if the meaning does not change, why not change the age of administration?

Weakland is attempting, once again, to guide his successor's actions, because there is a significant effort on the part of laypeople to move the typical age of Confirmation back toward 12 years or so--it was under Weakland that the age moved up to 16.

There's more at Get Up, and Get Moving.

UW-System's Baloney

You've all read the story already--the UW System is going "diverse" by one method or the other.

This may have an effect on academically-qualified white folks:

McKellips [a UW spokestwit] was quoted as saying that “people have become accustomed to knowing that they’ll be accepted. That comfort is going to go away.”

Let's turn that phrase a bit:

Dad29 was quoted as saying that "UW has become accustomed to knowing they'll get all the tax money they want. That comfort is going away."

We could, for openers, eliminate the entire "diversity" office at UW System.

Madness in Michigan: No More "America" in School

You can't make this stuff up:

In perhaps a well-intentioned, but pernicious example of political correctness, the Michigan Department of Education is attempting to ban the "America" and "American" from our public schools. Even though the word "America" appears in the department's own civics and government benchmarks, the department's style protocol for the Michigan Education Assessment Program requires that "America" and "Americans" be expunged from our testing and grade level expectations. Last week, the department ordered that our hard-working teachers not utter the words.

We're all 'North Americans'

The Department of Education asserts that "Americans" includes Mexicans, Canadians and others in the Western Hemisphere, so referring to U.S. residents as Americans is inappropriate. In the department's view, "America" happens to include South, Central and North America. Accordingly, when referring to the colonial period, the state bureaucracy requires teachers to refer to "the colonies of North America" or "North Americans." After the American Revolution, the nation is called the United States (not of America).

HT: Clayton Cramer

Priorities in Law Enforcement

Decisionmaking 101 for Gummint Twerps:

In order to secure a bunch of taxpayer money (Federal grants), Our Mommies in state/local jurisdictions are arresting taxpayers for not wearing seat belts while driving. Horrors!! Shock!! (And, we add, a big waste of time for all involved.)

On the other hand, [n]either local nor federal authorities, meanwhile, expect to seek out J. Carmen Navarrete for being here illegally, they said Tuesday.

There's no MONEY in deporting illegals. There IS money in harassing taxpayers.


Keg Lift-Und-Schlepp-Em Buys Her Next Job

Un-friggin' believable!!

On second thought--maybe not.

Attorney General Peg Lautenschlager has taken money directly from a state settlement with a pharmaceutical company and has given it in the form of grants to a bunch of health care organizations…

[T]he largest grant, ($50K!!!!) some five times larger than the grants for well established health care companies like Covenant and Race for the Cure, went to Wisconsin Citizen Action...

Excuse me for asking, but what does WiCitAct have to do with "health care?" When did this bunch of maggot-infested dope-smoking hippie wonzos EVER get involved with health care (other than, perhaps, self-admistering ampicillin to know.)

Looks like Peggy read the tea leaves in her polling. Wanna guess where she's working after November?

HT: BadgerBlogger

Pence: Common Sense on Immigration

Mike Pence (R-IN) is a "comer" in Congress; he was a serious candidate for Boehnert's position as Majority Leader (yah, look what they got in Boehnert--a self-appointed Tin God.)

At any rate, Pence has an excellent proposal for immigration reform.

I see the solution as a four-step process. Securing our border is the first step. The second step is to make the decision, once and for all, to deny amnesty to people whose first act in the United States was a violation of the law. The third step is to put in place a guest worker program, without amnesty, that will efficiently provide American employers with willing guest workers who come to America legally. The final step is tough employer sanctions that ensure a full partnership between American business and the American government in the enforcement of our laws on immigration and guest workers.

On border security:

Instead of terrorists having the ability to sneak through a porous border, they will find a secure border hardened to prevent their illegal entry.

On "legitimate" border-crossers:

However, as I have been thinking about securing our border, a thought kept coming back to me. So many of the people crossing the border are not crossing for nefarious or devious reasons. The great majority of illegal border crossers do so in order to find work or to be with family members working in America. ...there must be a legal means for the great majority of people seeking temporary work to come to America.

His solution will be controversial--but it makes a lot of sense:

Therefore, the solution is to setup a system that will encourage illegal aliens to self-deport and come back legally as guest workers. This may sound outside of the box, and it is. It may sound far-fetched and unrealistic, but it isn’t. It is based on sound, proven conservative principles. It places reliance on American enterprise and puts government back into its traditional role of protecting its citizens. Let me explain to you how it will work.

Private worker placement agencies that we could call “Ellis Island Centers” will be licensed by the federal government to match willing guest workers with jobs in America that employers cannot fill with American workers. U.S. employers will engage the private agencies and request guest workers. In a matter of days, the private agencies will match guest workers with jobs, perform a health screening, fingerprint them and provide the appropriate information to the FBI and Homeland Security so that a background check can be performed, and provide the guest worker with a visa granted by the State Department.
The visa will be issued only outside of the United States.

This is something that Manpower could do, without breaking a sweat.

...after three years of this program, we should be in a vastly different situation from where we are now. The great majority of illegal aliens will have self-deported and come back into a confirmed job. The number of those who don’t should be a manageable number for law enforcement to pursue and employers to terminate.

There also will be a limit on the amount of time a guest worker can spend in America. Guest workers will be allowed to renew their W Visas, but only for a period of up to six years. At that point, the guest should decide whether to return home or enter the separate process of seeking citizenship. We cannot have people coming to America as permanent guest workers.

Language problem? Nope.

In order to receive their first renewal, guest workers will be required to study English and pass an English proficiency class.

Problems with your employer? Nope. Quit and find a better one:

The bill will require employers to treat guest workers fairly and to follow employment laws. Employment taxes will be paid. Workers will be allowed to change jobs within a certain time period without having to leave the country. No worker will be trapped in a job with an abusive employer.

After creation and installation of a worker ID system,

With a guest worker program in place, there is no reason why an employer ever should hire or continue to employ an illegal alien. Employers who choose to operate outside of the system, however, must face tough fines in order to be made to comply. That is what the enforcement system and the new fine structure will do.

Why will THIS proposal work?

Employer enforcement is the key. Once in place, jobs for illegal aliens will dry up. Why hire an illegal alien when you can hire a legal guest worker and eliminate the possibility of a big fine? Why stay in the country illegally when you can quickly return home and come back as a legal guest worker?

Jim Sensenbrenner might want to take a hard look at this proposal. It utilizes a lot of his language but adds 'private industry' to the mix instead of another several thousand Gummint INS worker bees.

Party In Government (PIG) Crawls Forth

We've mentioned that Hastert, Boehnert, and Frist are out in left field with their "separation of powers" argument following a raid on Cong. Jefferson's office, which was executed pursuant to a JUDICIALLY-BLESSED search warrant. Jefferson, a slimebag, is not the issue here.

Seems that NYT/Knight Ridder discovered something:

Jefferson's case...seemed an unlikely mechanism for bringing the two parties together in an election year. But it appears to have done just that, leading Democrats and Republicans to find common ground in defense of institutional prerogatives.

Yah. They've discovered the Party In Government (AKA Party OF Government.)

Screw all you jerks out there in flyover country! WE ARE IN CONGRESS!!

Wisconsin Bishops Get It Right

Both Abp. Dolan and Bp. Morlino sent BagManJim a letter telling him that his embryonic-stem-cell research promotions are gravely immoral.

In a letter released Wednesday, Milwaukee Archbishop Timothy Dolan and Madison Bishop Robert Morlino asked the Democratic governor to reverse his support for embryonic stem cell research, which Doyle has said could boost the state's economy and lead to cures for Parkinson's disease and other maladies.

Doyle's arguments for the research "further diminishes human embryos to mere commodities," they wrote.

Doyle can't be bothered with such stuff when MONEY is on the line:

In a letter to the Catholic leaders Wednesday, Doyle said he had to "respectfully disagree" with their criticism because embryonic stem cell research "holds the potential to save countless lives and bring thousands of jobs to our state."

The bishops wrote that embryonic stem cell research is immoral because it destroys what they consider to be life, but added that they were particularly troubled that Doyle has tied his support for the research to economic development.

"Especially troubling to us is the tendency . . . to focus on the economic development value of embryonic stem cell research," they wrote. "Generally, support for research that involves destroying embryos is justified by the potential it holds to treat and cure illnesses, an understandable, but morally flawed justification. However, to justify such research on economic grounds takes the conversation in a disconcerting direction - a direction that further diminishes human embryos to mere commodities."

(There are ZERO documented "lives saved" by embryonic stemcells.)

Doyle said couples who can't conceive on their own and must turn to fertility clinics sometimes opt to donate unused fertilized embryos. Those embryos would have been destroyed, but now can be used to further stem cell research, he wrote.

Yup. See, what we do is simply clean up Frankenstein's mess. Whassamatta THAT?

The governor also said UW-Madison scientist James Thomson, one of the top researchers in the nation, and others have discovered that adult stem cells are no substitute for embryonic cells, which have a "far greater potential to save lives."

Duuuhhhhh. Thomson has a significant interest here; he's not dealing from 'clean hands.'

Kudos to the Bishops.

Elton John, Pathologist


Spake thus this glittering dimbulb:

British pop music star Elton John has attacked the Catholic Church and its position on condom use as a reason for the demise of 60 of his friends to the sexually-transmitted disease, AIDS. Speaking at a business awards ceremony, he said, "We don't have a medical vaccine but we have a social vaccine and it's called education."

Well, Sir Elton, here's a bit of education for you:

...[C]ondoms may be a leading reason for the HIV/AIDS epidemic. Even leading health experts at the United Nations have acknowledged that condoms have an estimated 10% failure rate.
Edward C. Green, a senior research scientist at the Harvard School of Public Health explained in 2003 that the one in ten failure rate of condoms protection from AIDS is "not good enough for a fatal disease."

What actually works?

Uganda's AIDS campaign, which stressed abstinence first and being faithful second and condoms only if one was crazy enough to forego the first two, has been seen as the only successful program in reversing the AIDS tide in Africa.

Appearing before the African subcommittee of the U.S. Senate on May 19, 2003, Green stated: "Infection rates [in Uganda] have declined from 21% to 6 % since 1991. Many of us in the AIDS and public health communities didn't believe that abstinence and faithfulness were realistic goals. It now seems we were wrong."

Surprise, surprise!

Perhaps Cdl. Martini, Friend of Rembert Weakland, should read the UN reports, too.

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Just Don't Say What You Think!!

The University of St. Thomas in the Twin Cities has a cachet similar to that of St. Norbert's; it's a smaller school, its graduates are generally successful, and it operates as a "Catholic" school.

But do NOT remind its graduating class of Catholic teachings!!

A spring term that began with controversy at the University of St. Thomas ended the same way Saturday when a student used part of his commencement address to admonish people he considered "selfish," including women who use birth control.

The remarks by Ben Kessler, a well-known student recently honored by peers and faculty as Tommie of the Year, led to catcalls and boos during commencement at the Catholic university in St. Paul. Others booed those who were booing. Some students walked out on their own graduation ceremony.

The President, whose middle names may well be Pontius Pilate leaps in...

The university's president, the Rev. Dennis Dease, also expressed regret "that graduates and their families and guests were offended by Mr. Kessler's remarks." Dease said he told Kessler it was inappropriate for him to use commencement to express his opinions.

Kessler was a defensive tackle on the St. Thomas football team and had a 4.0 grade-point average. He majored in philosophy and business, was an undergraduate seminarian at the university and plans to become a Roman Catholic priest.

Perhaps Abp. Dolan should give him a ring.

Future of the Archdiocese of Milwaukee?

With the California settlement looming (rumors are around $10MM), we now look at the action taken by the Diocese of Spokane:

The Catholic Diocese of Spokane has retained Keen Realty, LLC to market for sale two vacant parcels of land and a 28,968+/- sq. ft. Historic Catholic Pastoral Center, all located in Spokane, Washington.

Available for sale is a 92+/- acre vacant parcel of land located just northwest of Interstate 90 and Medical Lake Road, Freeway Exit # 272, in the West Plains area of Spokane, WA. The site is approximately 2 miles southwest of the Terminal at Spokane International Airport and about 7 miles from The City Center of Downtown Spokane. The subject property is fairly level, at grade and has excellent visibility with paved public access at several points.

Additionally, a 3.0+/- acre parcel of land is also available for sale in Spokane. This smaller site is located in a residential area and is adjacent to Painted Hills Golf Course.

Also available for sale is a 28,968+/- sq. ft., three-story Historic Catholic Pastoral Center. This general office building is located on West Riverside Avenue, was built in 1910, 1924 and 1989 and is zoned Central Business District-1 in Downtown Spokane.

Well, who needed all that land/buildings, anyway?

Fannie Mae: Culture of Greed and Deception

Fannie Mae (FNMA) is the largest single investor in home mortgages and enjoys a quasi-Governmental status which make its securities (stock and bonds) attractive; people tend to believe that 'the Gummint will NOT let FNMA fail.'

That, alone, means one should VERY carefully evaluate its securites and stock for purchase...

But there's more. The ex-Pres/CEO of FNMA, an appointee of Bill Clinton, has some 'splainin to do:

Federal regulators issued a blistering report about mortgage giant Fannie Mae on Tuesday, alleging accounting manipulation aimed at lining executives' pockets and lying to investors about smooth growth in profits and earnings.

...OFHEO and the Securities and Exchange Commission announced a $400 million civil penalty against Fannie Mae, the largest U.S. buyer and guarantor of home mortgages, in a settlement over the alleged accounting manipulation. Of that amount, the $350 million assessed by the SEC — one of its biggest penalties ever in an accounting fraud case — will go to compensate Fannie Mae investors damaged by the alleged violations.

The company also agreed to limit the growth of its multibillion-dollar mortgage holdings, capping them at $727 billion, and to make top-to-bottom changes in its corporate culture, accounting procedures and ways of managing risk.

The part in red is suggestive, to say the least.

Twenty-nine current and former executives and employees — including former chairman and chief executive Franklin Raines and former chief financial officer Timothy Howard — will be reviewed for possible disciplinary action or termination.

S'pose the Feds might yank the pensions from these cretins? Naaaaaahhhh...

In December 2004, the SEC ordered the company to restate its earnings back to 2001 — a correction expected to reach an estimated $11 billion. The Justice Department has been pursuing a criminal investigation.

The report "shows that Fannie Mae's faults were not limited to violating accounting and corporate governance standards, but included excessive risk-taking and poor risk management as well," Randal Quarles, Treasury undersecretary for domestic finance, said in a statement. "OFHEO's findings are a clear warning about the very real risk the improperly managed investment portfolios of (Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac) pose to the greater financial system."

The accounting manipulation tied to executives' bonuses occurred from 1998 to 2004, according to the report, a much longer period than was previously known. It "made a significant contribution" to Raines' compensation, which totaled more than $90 million from 1998 to 2003, the report says, including some $52 million directly tied to the company hitting earnings targets

Uhhnnn...Mr. Raines...we want $52MM back. Now. Before you land in Club Fed.

If You Think NSA Phone Data is Scary...

Then check THIS out:

The infra-red cameras are capable of reading license plates at triple digit speeds AND across up to four lanes of traffic AND at angles which I would not have believed capable, at up to 1,500 different license plates per minute per eight hour shift. Automatically.

At first glance, this new technology seems quite the boon for law enforcement. It's basically a program to read license plates and compare them to a list (stolen vehicles, vehicles involved in felonies, etc.), and if there's a match, to alert the officer. of the first extras added seems to have been the ubiquitous GPS receiver.

Ah, I see the light dawning.

The feature is called 'Geo-fencing'. In a nutshell, 'Geo-fencing' is simply inputting a GPS location cross-indexed with a list of license plates that shouldn't be anywhere near the location. For instance, the GPS coordinates of a school, cross-indexed with the license plates of your local sex offenders. Or the GPS coordinates of a house, indexed with the license plates belonging to Protective Order suspects.Doesn't sound too bad, until you realize that the co-ordinats and the index can be whatever the local agency deems necessary.

Here's where it gets really interesting:

Once in [the] database, anyone who has access can search the database by license plate number, location, time of day, or other variable or combination of variables.

[With e]nough patrol cars retrofitted with one of these systems and -- deliberately or not -- the government will have a record of where each and every car in the area is at least once per shift.The potential for abuse is awe-inspiring.

(This from an LEO with 18+ years' experience on the force, by the way.)

For criminal investigations, this stuff is likely a godsend. On the other hand, one bad guy, and you have serious problems:

Don't like guns? Run one of your patrol cars through gunshop parking lots, and see where else those plates have been. It's for the children, right?

Same applies to, say, Republican or Democratic functions--or whatever ELSE some local or State (or national) figure-with-power doesn't like.

As with NSA phone-records--it's not necessarily the data--it's the moral quality of the individuals keeping or using the data that counts. Obviously, as technology advances, the stakes get higher...

Hastert & Boehnert: Sit Down and SHUT UP!

Evidently the Moron-Content Meter in the House and Senate continues to rise--the screeching from Hastert, Boehnert, and Frist continues over a legal, judicially-approved raid on the office of a Congressman who was videotaped taking a bribe.

Most likely that particular Congressman, a Democrat, will be out of Congress (but still occupying Federally-paid space) in the next year or so.

However, Hastert and Boehnert continue to harp, snort, and wail.

Message to you boys: STFU. Nobody, but nobody, elected you to permanent immunity from investigation.

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Real Men Kneel on Stone

From a blog of a Catholic priest serving in Iraq:

It has benches along three sides, a field altar in the center, and a tabernacle on the fourth wall, mounted on a wooden platform. Nothing fancy, but it is more than most places have, so I am more than satisfied.

The floor is stone tile. One day I commented during my homily that maybe we should get foam rolls from Supply to kneel on.

After Mass my collection of one enlisted sailor, two Navy officers (doctors both), one enlisted Marine, and four Marine officers had a quick huddle. As one of the officers was bringing in some of the gear from the Mass back to the sacristry/confessional/storage area (we make the best use of our spaces over here), he remarked that the group had decided that the pads were not needed.

When I asked why not, he replied: “Real men kneel on stone.”

There are TWO operative words here: kneel and stone.

AFL-CIO and Immigration

As demonstrated in an earlier post, a number of unions are leaving, or have already left, the AFL-CIO Federation to concentrate on organizing drives.

And those organizing drives are concentrating on the lower-end of the wage scale (with a few exceptions,) making one of the targets the immigrants, legal or otherwise, who occupy that niche in the economy.

Now comes news of another defection from the AFL-CIO:

The Laborers' Union, which represents 700,000 workers in the construction industry, has decided to leave the AFL-CIO, officials said.

The Laborers were already part of the Change to Win coalition, breakaway unions that have left the giant federation of more than 50 unions in an effort to forge a new direction for organized labor. But the Laborers had remained in the federation.

"We are leaving so that we can place our full efforts and focus on growth in order to help millions of construction workers improve their lives," said Richard Greer, a spokesman for the Laborers. The Laborers informed the AFL-CIO Monday that they are leaving as of June 1.

The Laborers, the Service Employees International Union, the Teamsters, the United Food and Commercial Workers, UNITE HERE, United Farm Workers and the Carpenters are part of the Change to Win coalition.

Frankly, labor membership numbers have been spiraling downward (outside of Government unions) for the last 25 years and although the union movement has a lot of cash available at the present, one does not need clairvoyance to foresee an empty treasury.

If/when the unions run out of money, they will be unable to make political contributions--and that will be the end.

So, to pump membership numbers, the Change To Win coalition is working two angles: first, to water down the Immigration bill as far as possible in all areas which count; and secondly, to capture as many of the immigrants into membership as possible.

"Temporary" Does NOT Mean "Temporary"

The Senate Immigration bill is so full of....ah.....holes and weasel-words that it's like shooting fish in a barrel, but here's another dead trout:

Last Thursday, Sens. Kyl and Cornyn offered an amendment to the immigration bill that would give real meaning to the word “temporary” in the President’s repeated statements about a “temporary worker program.” This amendment, sensibly enough, would “stipulate that the 200,000 low-skilled immigrants allowed to enter the country under a new temporary-worker visa would have to leave when the visa expired.” The Senators, under the impression that “temporary” means something, announced White House support for this provision.

Not so fast!!

When word reached the backers of the compromise, they were furious, according to a senior Republican Senate aide involved in the events. Immigrant groups such as the National Council of La Raza [the Race] and the National Immigration Forum had said they would withdraw their support for the Senate bill if the amendment passed.

Immigration enthusiasts Sens. Martinez, Hagel and Graham prevailed upon the White House to drop its support, and Hagel went to the floor of the Senate to announce this victory

Victory, eh? Over whom?

Once again, GWB bows to LaRaza. Please allow us to continue in 'full-cynic' mode. The only time these jerks are NOT lying is when they are dead drunk (silent) or fully asleep (silent.)

HT: RedState

Predator on the Prowl

If you live in the western area of Brookfield (City OR Town), or in eastern Pewaukee, or northern Waukesha, keep your eyes open for a royal blue Cherokee/Explorer-type vehicle occupied by a 30-ish male.

He likes to stop on the street and talk to young children.

Yes, a police report has been filed.

We're CONGRESSMEN!!! You Can't Raid US!!!

See, when you're in Congress, none of the rules apply:

An unusual FBI raid of a Democratic congressman's office over the weekend prompted complaints yesterday from leaders in both parties, who said the tactic was unduly aggressive and may have breached the constitutional separation of powers between the executive and legislative branches of government.

Rep. William J. Jefferson (La.), who is at the center of a 14-month investigation for allegedly accepting bribes for promoting business ventures in Africa, also held a news conference in which he denied any wrongdoing and denounced the raid on his office as an "outrageous intrusion." Jefferson, who has not been charged, vowed to seek reelection in November.

Jefferson's reaction is the normal one--after all, he was the target of the raid.

But it's THESE reactions which make you wonder:

The Saturday raid... posed a new political dilemma for the leaders of both parties, who felt compelled to protest his treatment while condemning any wrongdoing by the lawmaker.

Republican leaders, who previously sought to focus attention on the Jefferson case as a counterpoint to their party's own ethical scandals, said they are disturbed by the raid. Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist (R-Tenn.) said that he is "very concerned" about the incident and that Senate and House counsels will review it.

House Speaker J. Dennis Hastert (R-Ill.) expressed alarm at the raid. "The actions of the Justice Department in seeking and executing this warrant raise important Constitutional issues that go well beyond the specifics of this case," he said in a lengthy statement released last night.

"Insofar as I am aware, since the founding of our Republic 219 years ago, the Justice Department has never found it necessary to do what it did Saturday night, crossing this Separation of Powers line, in order to successfully prosecute corruption by Members of Congress,"

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) said in a statement that "members of Congress must obey the law and cooperate fully with any criminal investigation" but that "Justice Department investigations must be conducted in accordance with Constitutional protections and historical precedent."

Senator Frist and Speaker Hastert (both useless turkeys, by the way) ought to be slapped. What they're doing is NOT asserting "congressional privilege," they are getting dangerously close to justifying obstruction of justice.

When you think of the intrusions the Congressional Crowd has imposed upon ordinary citizens (remember "airport screenings"??) takes a LOT of chutzpah to make these asinine comments.

HT: AnkleBitingPundits

Monday, May 22, 2006

ID Theft--26.5 MILLION Veterans

Are you a vet? Discharged since 1975?

Yah--your data's been compromised. Some VetsAdmin jackass took it home, and somebody took it away from his home.

This should be interesting, eh?

Cdl Arinze to Bps Lipscomb, Trautman

In brief, what Cdl Arinze said was:

I love it when the Rome gang speaks in plain English!
The attention of your Bishops’ Conference was also recalled to the fact that Liturgiam authenticam was issued at the directive of the Holy Father at the time, Pope John Paul II, to guide new translations as well as the revision of all translations done in the last forty years, to bring them into greater fidelity to the original-language official liturgical texts.
For this reason it is not acceptable to maintain that people have become accustomed to a certain translation for the past thirty or forty years, and therefore that it is pastorally advisable to make no changes. Where there are good and strong reasons for a change, as has been determined by this Dicastery in regard to the entire translation of the Missale Romanum as well as other important texts, then the revised text should make the needed changes.
The attitudes of Bishops and Priests will certainly influence the acceptance of the texts by the lay faithful as well.
The whining in the background comes from Bp Trautman and some of his pals. Yes, it's whining, and it is both obnoxious AND noxious.
HT: Amy

Yah--I Missed the Anniversary

One year of this passed on May 14th.

All four of you readers missed it.

So did I.

Reminds me: I should probably look up the spouse's birthday and our anniversary dates soon...

In Case You Don't Get It, BagManJimbo Doyle

Jim Doyle, friend of illegal aliens, trial lawyers, tribes, and criminals, tells Wisconsin women that their ONLY choice is the one on the left

ShrillShirley, Demento Queen of the Supremes (WI), tells Wisconsin women that their only choice is the one on the left (unless they really, really, really think they are in danger and ask "Shirley, May I??" before the assault.)

Real men and women think the proper choice is the one on the right.

Slavemasters Break the Law--No Problem!!

Yah, the Senate Bill also provides amnesty for the Slavemaster class--employers of illegals.

Among those who will be cleared of past crimes under the Senate's proposed immigration-reform bill would be the businesses that have employed the estimated 10 million illegal aliens eligible for citizenship and that provided the very "magnet" that drew them here in the first place.

Buried in the more than 600 pages of legislation is a section titled "Employer Protections," which states: "Employers of aliens applying for adjustment of status under this section shall not be subject to civil and criminal tax liability relating directly to the employment of such alien."

Podhoretz and Arlen Specter both object:

"The legislation we are considering today is not amnesty," Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Arlen Specter said last week. "That is a pejorative term, really a smear term used to denigrate the efforts at comprehensive immigration reform. This is not amnesty because amnesty means a pardon of those who have broken the law."

(Podhoretz, a NeoCon, objects to the use of the term 'slavemasters.' )

Naturally, the Democrats rose to the opportunity:

Sen. Robert C. Byrd, West Virginia Democrat, vehemently opposes "this effort to waive the rules for lawbreakers and to legalize the unlawful actions of undocumented workers and the businesses that illegally employ them."

...without the least sense of irony, it was "Sheets" Byrd!

HT: the Washington Times via Malkin.

Sunday, May 21, 2006

WARNING!! Don't Dress This Way on Airplanes

If you travel by air, here's what NOT to wear:

dress shoes, dress socks, and sport coats

That's the 'uniform dress' of the Fed Air Marshals.

Since they will be killed/disabled FIRST by the perps, imitation is a form of suicide.

HT: Captain's Quarters

Diebold Vote Machines--NOT Ready for Prime Time

The BadgerBlogger reads interesting stuff!

There is a backdoor in the [Diebold] software that allows someone with access to the machines to completely alter the way the the votes are read and tabulated.

As it turns out, this isn’t simply a mistake in the programming, it is a built in feature.

Diebold "built-in" the feature for ease of maintenance and upgrades, assuming that nobody with authority over the machines (poll workers, municipal voting supervisors, etc.,) knows or understands DOS.

Faulty assumption.

Tom Jefferson Loves These Kids

We all know "TJ"'s maxim "A little rebellion now and then is a good thing."


The senior class at a southern Kentucky high school gave their response Friday night to a federal judge's order banning prayer at commencement.

About 200 seniors stood during the principal's opening remarks and began reciting the Lord's Prayer, prompting a standing ovation from a standing-room only crowd at the Russell County High School gymnasium.

The thunderous applause drowned out the last part of the prayer.

The Federal jackass judge could not be reached for comment.

English? Kinda, Sorta--According to GWB

We all know why GWB really doesn't want to get into the topic of the English language.

But it goes beyond the "Late Show" monologues.

This one was started when the Attorney General said that the President does not support English as the "national language." WRONG!!

"The president has never supported making English the national language," Gonzales said after meeting with state and local officials in Texas to discuss cooperation on enforcement of immigration laws.

He said Bush has instead long supported a concept called "English-Plus," believing that it was good to be proficient in more than one language.

Later on Friday, the White House weighed in to clarify Gonzales' remarks, saying the president does not believe in English as an "official" language.

"The attorney general got caught in a linguistic snare. He took 'national' language to mean what we describe as 'official' language.

"We have no problem in identifying English, our common linguistic currency as a national language; we also view it more expansively as the "common and unifying language," said White House spokeswoman Dana Perino.

But whatever you call it, it is NOT THE OFFICIAL LANGUAGE OF THE US.

By the way, the use of the indefinite article "a" (bold/highlighted above) is very interesting. As written, that sentence means that English is simply one of a NUMBER of 'national languages.'

We have other 'national languages?' Or we have a Press Office which doesn't understand the current "national language," which is most certainly NOT an "official language," gehr ste'he, paisan?


Saturday, May 20, 2006

You Got Troubles, Bubbles?

The LawDog has trouble (!!) getting a NICS-check clearance to purchase a weapon.

And he has some thoughts regarding the politicians responsible:

Two-bit, four-flushing, dirt-stupid, mono-synaptic, twinkle-toed, nostril-digging, booger-chewing, gauch-eyed, disease-ridden, vermin-infested, inbred, lily-livered, sheep-shagging, arse-picking, trough-swilling, blood-sucking, butt-kissing, parasitic catamites!

I'd pimp-slap every gun-grabbing legiscritter on Capitol Hill, but I don't want to splatter cow manure over half of Virginia.

Every fecking time I see Schumer, or Kennedy or Feinstein, or any of the rest of them, I am flat awe-struck that somebody, somewhere, not only managed to stack dung that high, but also managed to get it to speak.

I'd name them as their mother's shame, but considering that some random invertebrate probably vomited them forth onto a handy rock like a handful of small, greasy, hairballs from hell, I sincerely doubt that the concept of 'mother' has ever tickled that one paltry neuron weeping all alone in the vast, bitter darkness betwixt their ear flaps

Actually, limiting the list to Schumer, Kennedy, and Feinstein is...unfair.

Landscaping--Big Buck Jobs!

My friends in the landscaping business may have a reaction to this:

Yesterday, the Los Angeles Times ran a piece of open-borders propaganda masquerading as journalism, which featured a Riverside, Calif., landscaper named Cyndi Smallwood who claims she can't find workers to dig ditches even at $34 an hour.

The claim seems preposterous, but the Times assures us that Smallwood has no ideological ax to grind. She is "ambivalent on immigration reform," the Times reports. Just an ordinary landscaper, you know.

But it turns out there's a tiny bit more to the story that the LA Times isn't telling you. Reader Christopher L. wrote this morning to point out that a simple Google search shows that Cyndi Smallwood is president of the Orange County chapter of the California Landscape Contractors Association, and is a member of the association's "Immigration Task Force." The activist group opposes the "Punitive Immigration Reform Bill Proposed by Rep. Sensenbrenner."

But when you get to the end of the blog, you find that $34./hour is REQUIRED under California law for "living wage" purposes--and that Ms. Smallwood did not actually advertise these jobs (there are 2;) she just tried to fill them by word-of-mouth.

However, after the brouhaha resulting from her LATimes and radio appearances, she had well over 30 applications--we say "well over" because most of the callers on a call-in show ALSO wanted the jobs, but nobody counted them.

...the fact remains that in the judgment of California politicians, $75K/year is a "living wage."

Welcome, NRA!!

In a most eloquent column, Pat McIlheran says a great deal about the NRA's foundational philosophy and the wackos who can't stand to utter the letters "N R A".

Among the raspberries being blown at what amounts to a bunch of ordinary people who like hunting is the one from Josh Horwitz, head of something called the Coalition to Stop Gun Violence. It used to be have a more direct name, The National Coalition to Ban Handguns, so you have a decent idea of where they fall on respecting the Second Amendment.

His argument is that by suggesting that people use guns to, say, shoot back at criminals sticking up their shops or invading their homes, the NRA favors the abrogation of the right to a fair trial.

[You can't make this up...]

Horwitz says it goes further, that the NRA is destructive to democracy by its insistence that, in the end, the point of the Second Amendment is that an armed citizenry is a check on tyranny.
“Government is the source of some of our very important rights,” he says. “I thought government was the embodiment of the people.”

Sorry, no. Governments are useful things, ...[b]ut they are merely instruments to secure rights that come from elsewhere — as the Founders put it, “their Creator”[.]

Horwitz’s contention that any notion of self-defense against civil tyranny is to be found in democratic institutions alone seems a little pale.

His bigger point, that in democracy we presume that the will of the people is paramount and that, therefore, the losers have no business regarding any of democracy’s results as tyrannical seems disconnected from our history as a nation founded on rebellion and constituted with the assumption there are many things the will of the people can’t do. Like ban free speech, even if they vote to do so.

“Your remedy is in the political system,” he says, but in the NRA’s most apocalyptic moments, it is merely saying the Second Amendment amounts to a silent reminder that even the political system has to remain within bounds.

An eloquent and civil response to someone who deserves far less, eh?

Thanks, Pat.