Saturday, February 25, 2006

Democracy in Action

Saw James Wigderson's (of the famous Wigderson Library & Pub blog) first column in the Waukesha Freeman, Thursday, Feb. 26, 2006. I responded the same day and sent it to the Freeman. It's now Sunday and I have not received a response. I won't speculate why...probably because it was over 300 words. I'm sure everyone has a different opinion on that...who cares.

Anyway, saw Xoff made a point of mentioning it and since everyone at James' site is congratulating him on his picture, I'll just go ahead and post my response here. Happy day.

In a column in the Waukesha Freeman, James Wigderson would have
you believe that the holding of referendums in 23 cities and villages across
Wisconsin is a waste of time, just an opportunity for a few busybodies to sing
"Give Peace a Chance," and a way to make them feel good. But the real reason
that James doesn't like this exercise in free speech is because the message is
one he opposes. If the referendum were about supporting the President in his
time of drooping poll numbers, James would be all for it.

I've never understood why conservatives are so adamantly against democracy in action. So what if the end result of this referendum will amount to next to nothing. So what if the voices won't be heard in Washington. Someone might hear them. And just possibly those voices will have made a difference to another fellow citizen.

Fear. That's what conservatives are good at. For example, James tosses out this
over used talking point -- "never mind the negative impact upon the morale of
the armed forces" -- in an attempt to shame people into staying quiet. This is
just so much crap. The armed forces understand what they're fighting for, and it
is certainly not to stifle dissent. And you know what, the armed forces are not
some monolithic group of conservatives who can't wait to get back and vote
Republican. Over thirty that have returned from this conflict are running for
Congress under the Democrat banner, and most are favored to win. For James and
the conservatives, that is truly something to fear.

Oh, and if this referendum makes some people feel good about themselves, well great. They have as much right to feel self important as do those who go to Planned Parenthood to harangue and harass woman as they walk through the doors. And they have as much right to hold this referendum as did the protestors at John Kerry's speeches here in Milwaukee, who did their best to drown him out using bullhorns and vulgarities. Wouldn't it be grand if someone had the chance to protest at a Bush speech, to which admittance is by invitation only.

Truth be told, these people are Americans who have every right to lecture their government, just as much as James has a right to lecture them and to denigrate the residents of 27th Street and Locust Avenue. Perhaps someone could convince the Milwaukee Transit System to bus them to James' home where they can visit with him and his family and discuss the role he imagines for the United Nations. I bet there would be an exchange of free speech then. Hooray for democracy in action.


Part of a letter to the editor of the Milwaukee JournalSentinel, Feb. 26...

My wife and I were very upset this past Christmas season over all the attempts to de-Christify Christmas. We joined thousands of fellow Christians in writing letters to retailers that forbade employees from wishing "Merry Christmas" to shoppers, and we avoided shopping at those places.

Joe Sanfelippo, West Allis

And the fella who owns the gas station up the street truly believes the world was created 6,000 years ago. Good grief, the sheep are everywhere.

Bob Marley Lives

Only the greatest musician of all time, IMHO. Saw his picture and had to post it.

Don Knotts Dead at 81

Don Knotts died today at 81. The man was a comic genius and one of my favorite actors. His role of Barney Fife was a classic.

Anna v. Jessica

Was reading about Anna Benson on Media Matters. Seems she has conservative views and doesn't like Michael Moore. I couldn't help comparing her to local siren, Jessica McBucher. Let's see:

Anna Benson is a conservative.
Jessica McBucher is a conservative.

Anna has a website.
Jessica has a website.

Anna married a high-profile man (Kris Benson, former #1 pick and current MLB pitcher).
Jessica married a high profile man (Paul Bucher, current district attorney for Waukesha County and contender for AG of Wisconsin).

Anna likes to be seen, she is seemingly everywhere...articles, on-line, always in the might call her a publicity slut.

Anna threatened to sleep with entire NY Mets baseball team if she ever caught Kris cheating on her.

Friday, February 24, 2006

Men and Uptight Women

PIERRE, S.D. - South Dakota lawmakers approved a ban on nearly all abortions Friday, setting up a deliberate frontal assault on Roe v. Wade at a time when some activists see the U.S. Supreme Court as more willing than ever to overturn the 33-year-old decision.
Republican Gov. Mike Rounds said he was inclined to sign the bill, because of one person, Harriet Shrub.

Ms. Shrub, 35, is the president of the Alpha Beta Gamma Center, a Sioux Falls pregnancy counseling agency that tries to steer women away from abortion. She said that most abortions performed in South Dakota do not stem from rape or even failed contraception, but are simply “conveniences.” When asked how Ms. Shrub knew this, she admitted that she had never been raped and so, consequently, it must be true of others. And since she had never had sex – she was waiting for the right man – it was difficult for her to believe that others couldn’t do the same as she.

Shrub, who is incredibly ugly, did admit that she had two encounters late at night with, what she believed, were stalkers, but they ran away before she could scream for help. One was later found with his eyes ripped out, apparently self inflicted. The other man was never found, though there is doubt he ever existed.

Shrub also said she believes most South Dakota women want the state to ban abortion, and many who have had abortions “wish someone would have stopped them.” At this point, twenty-five male legislators rushed out of the room. It was later determined that the men had become violently ill at the thought of copulating with Ms. Shrub.

So violently ill, in fact, that an exception to the abortion ban was added later…stipulating that a mandatory abortion was to be performed in the highly unlikely event that Ms. Shrub ever became pregnant.

Planned Parenthood spokesperson, Jill Cando, said this was typical of men. "They can’t make up their minds," she said. "On the one hand they want to ban abortions and on the other hand"…at this point, Ms. Cando stopped, put her hand to her mouth, and burst into laughter. With tears rolling down her face, Ms. Cando quickly exited.

Thursday, February 23, 2006

No Vote for Bucher

I was willing to give Paul Bucher a chance. I knew I would not vote for Peg...and I knew nothing about Kate Falk. I was also willing to give Bucher a chance because a friend of mine knows his brother, and said good things...about his brother.

However, after seeing the Bucher website smearing Kate Falk, I will not vote for Bucher. In fact, if anyone asks about him, I will distort his record every chance I get. He is a power hungry coward. What he has done with this website is unfathomable...Willie Horton twelve times over.

The worst part is that he makes it appear as though Falk is responsible for the crimes these degenerates have committed. It's mean-spirited, it's crass, it's beyond the pale.

Nope. No vote for Bucher from here.

Another wacky tale from my son, Ian

Hello, all you ferrets and coffee cups. I'm Ian Rock with the latest weather forecast.

Today a black front will be fighting in from United States and farting over the northern part of Wisconsin causing high winds and falling televisions.

Red clouds will fart the region south of Milwaukee. Look out for a few blue showers. If you're planning on going out this evening, be sure to take along a sturdy gerbil. Tonight the skies will hop and temperatures will swim.

Tomorrow will be squeaky. Temperatures could reach a record 500,769,481 degrees by noon.

God's Perfection

This story was sent to me years ago. I found it again for a friend to read and thought I would post it here because I like the story.

In Brooklyn, NY, Chush is a school that caters to learning disabled children. Some children remain in Chush for their entire school career, while others can be mainstreamed into conventional schools. At a Chush fundraising dinner, the father of a Chush child delivered a speech that would never be forgotten by all who attended.

After extolling the school and its dedicated staff, he cried out, "Where is the perfection in my son Shaya? Everything God does is done with perfection. But my child cannot understand things as other children do. My child cannot remember facts and figures as other children do. Where is God's perfection? The audience was shocked by the question, pained by the father's anguish and stilled by the piercing query.

"I believe," the father answered, "that when God brings a child like this into the world, the perfection that he seeks is in the way people react to this child." He then told the following story about his son Shaya.

One afternoon, Shaya and his father walked past a park where some boys Shaya knew were playing baseball. Shaya asked, "Do you think they will let me play?"

Shaya's father knew that his son was not at all athletic and that most boys would not want him on their team. But Shaya's father understood that if his son was chosen to play it would give him a comfortable sense of belonging. Shaya's father approached one of the boys in the field and asked if Shaya could play. The boy looked around for guidance from his teammates. Getting none, he took matters in his own hands and said "We are losing by six runs and the game is in the eighth inning. I guess he can be on our team and we'll try to put him up to bat in the ninth inning."

Shaya's father was ecstatic as Shaya smiled broadly. Shaya was told to put on a glove and go out to play short center field. In the bottom of the eighth inning, Shaya's team scored a few runs but was still behind by three. In the bottom of the ninth inning, Shaya's team scored again and now with two outs and the bases loaded with the potential winning run on base. Shaya was scheduled to be up. Would the team actually let Shaya bat at this juncture and give away their chance to win the game?

Surprisingly, Shaya was given the bat. Everyone knew that it was all but impossible because Shaya didn't even know how to hold the bat properly, let alone hit with it. However as Shaya stepped up to the plate, the pitcher moved a few steps to lob the ball in softly so Shaya should at least be able to make contact.

The first pitch came and Shaya swung clumsily and missed. One of Shaya's teammates came up to Shaya and together they held the bat and faced the pitcher waiting for the next pitch. The pitcher again took a few steps forward to toss the ball softly toward Shaya. As the pitch came in, Shaya and his teammate swung at the ball and together they hit a slow ground ball to the pitcher.

The pitcher picked up the soft grounder and could easily have thrown the ball to the first baseman. Shaya would have been out and that would have ended the game. Instead, the pitcher took the ball and threw it on a high arc to right field, far beyond reach of the first baseman.

Everyone started yelling, "Shaya, run to first, run to first."

Never in his life had Shaya run to first. He scampered down the baseline wide-eyed and startled. By the time he reached first base, the right fielder had the ball. He could have thrown the ball to the second baseman who would tag out Shaya, who was still running. But the right fielder understood what the pitcher's intentions were, so he threw the ball high and far over the third baseman's head.

Everyone yelled, "Run to second, run to second." Shaya ran towards second base as the runners ahead of him deliriously circled the bases toward home.

As Shaya reached second base, the opposing short stop ran to him, turned him in the direction of third base and shouted, "Run to third." As Shaya rounded third, the boys from both teams ran behind him screaming, "Shaya run home." Shaya ran home, stepped on home plate and all 18 boys lifted him on their shoulders and made him the hero, as if he had just hit a "grand slam" and won the game for his team.

"That day," said the father softly with tears now rolling down his face, "those 18 boys reached their level of God's perfection."

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Neil Boortz: Republican Shill

Another fine piece by John Sugg. This one regarding our favorite Limbaugh wannabe, Neil Boortz (just drop the "tz" for an accurate description of him). Chickenhawks of the world...

by John Sugg

I noticed that Boortz has taken up an issue at the University of Washington. A student senator, Jill Edwards, had opposed a memorial for a Marine aviator and UW grad who had won the Medal of Honor in WWII. That's wrong -- but the girl's point that public institutions should also honor peacemakers (as Jesus proclaimed) is very valid.

Boortz on Feb. 15 fumed and fretted:

"Shall I repeat that? Jill Edwards, a Junior in Mathematics at the University of Washington, says that a U.S. Marine is not --- that's right, NOT the example of the sort of person that the University of Washington wants to produce. Let's let this sink in. To all of you men and women out there who have served with pride in the United States Marine Corps; to those of you who fought in World War II, Korea, Vietnam and the Middle East, Jill Edwards, student senate member at the University of Washington, thinks that you are unworthy to be graduates of the University of Washington. My father was a Marine."

What's wrong with Bootz's spin? It's a classic example of a fraud protesting too much.
As I -- and a medically retired Marine Corps veteran, Frank Kaner of Duluth, Ga. -- exposed last year, Boortz is the worst sort of draft dodger. For years on his radio show, Boortz had claimed that medical conditions prevented him from serving in the military during the Vietnam conflict. His fibs changed from time to time -- he usually claimed his eyes kept him out of uniform, but on a few occasions he said it was asthma.

That made me suspicious. After all, Boortz talks incessantly about flying his private planes. If he can do that, he certainly could have met the vision requirements to slog around in rice paddies in Vietnam. Boortz also has talked about such things as climbing mountains -- not a likely activity for someone who suffers from severe asthma.

After listening to Boortz for years shill for George Bush's Imperial Iraq Crusade, Kaner and I each made freedom of information requests about Boortz to the Selective Service. What we learned is that Boortz in 1964 had obtained a deferment granted to college students participating in ROTC type programs. Boortz had briefly enrolled in the Texas A&M cadet corps. But he dropped out of the corps, although he continued at the university. He never told his draft board. Had the board found out about his deception, he would have been immediately drafted. Boortz in 1968 obtained a deferment granted to those with dependents. At no time did he ever have a medical deferment.

In short, Boortz was a coward. While screaming for America to go fight wars, he lied to his draft board to avoid serving in uniform. It's quite possible, even likely, that another young man during the late 1960s -- when the combat in Vietnam peaked -- died in Boortz's place.
And, on the issue of criticizing the University of Washington student for not honoring the Marine aviator -- when Kaner contacted Boortz about his draft dodging, Boortz had nothing by disrespect and ridicule for the Marine veteran. Kaner, due to service related injuries and disabilities, was retired as a corporal. Boortz sneered in an email that having obtained the rank of corporal after 20 years (the usual time for retirement) indicated that Kaner wasn't much of a Marine. Kaner, of course, was retired after only a few years. Boortz, as usual, failed to check his facts.

So, who most dishonored the Marines? A young woman who believes you get peace by practicing peace? Or a guy who lied his way out of donning a uniform -- and then derides a veteran who did serve? Boortz is the one who truly dishonors all who served.

Stream of Remarkable Hypocrisy

I still think that Mike Hasslinger sending that e-mail to Charlie Yikes was not the brightest thing in the world to do. However, the response below by Chris of spottedhorse 2 fame just confirms that old adage about living in a glass house.

quick clarification I believe charlie confirmed that Mr Hasslinger wrote the original email. The two things I cannot believe are that an elected offical would use that kind of language did he think he as being anonomous. Second do people realize how much of a trail they leave when the send emails or try to leave anon comments lol. My guess is Mr Hasslinger has to be asking himself what was I thinking he really made himself look like an idiot. has he given a statement yet?

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Give Me Your Not So Poor?

Charlie Yikes is yucking it up about a report that states that the poor don't have it so bad. Of course, the report was compiled by the Heritage Foundation, a group that tilts just a little to the right.

I read most of the report. Without having access to the numbers it used, nor the time (now if I was paid...), I have to dismiss it as wingnut propoganda. However, one stat did amuse me. The number of people who have air conditioning now, as opposed to 1970, has more than doubled. Of course, the report doesn't note that air conditioners by and large are far less expensive (and smaller and more powerful) now than they were, and were considered a true luxury back then.

Data manipulation is a tired tactic of the right.

No...Don't Write a Letter to the Devil

Saw the e-mails from Mike Hasslinger, Waukesha County's Register of Deeds, to Charlie Yikes. Good grief...don't send e-mails if there is the slightest chance they will be published. And especially don't send them if the aforementioned is true and you have no clue regarding spelling and grammar...or what you are trying to say.

The inability to edit your own writing makes you look like a buffoon and, unfortunately, allows the idiot righties to play the association game. However, this should be a lesson for a certain somebody about how dumb...nah forget it, it won't sink in.

I Believe in the Tooth Fairy

Click on image for full-size. The administration is always right, aina?

Monday, February 20, 2006

Just a Little Bit of Love

My ten-year-old is confused by long division. So I've spent the last two evenings...about two hours worth...going over problem after problem with him, explaining where he's made mistakes and applauding him when he has done well. He says he's getting it...I foresee some more practice.

It seems to me that lost in the shuffle of the school choice issue is where has the drumbeat for parental personal responsibility gone. It's kind of hard to put teachers into seemingly no win situations and expect them to perform miracles. If the parents don't care, neither will the children.

And not every child is accepted into charter schools. What about the children who don't get accepted? And no, I don't think the answer is to increase the number of students that can go to charter schools...because, face it, the lack of real accountability is just going to prolong the problem.

There's no easy answer to this problem...the left certainly does not have the answer...nor does Charlie Yikes and the right wingers. Unfortunately, it won't go away just because everyone raises their voices.

Meanwhile, my son and I have time yet tonight to look over the rules for the science experiment he needs to complete before the end of the year. Time to go.