Friday, July 28, 2006

Incautious Driving

Our street, Fiebrantz Drive, is currently under re-construction. They are raising the road four inches and it is a few days short of being paved. Orange cones stand guard everywhere over raised manholes, which has turned our drive into a motocross zone. Consequently, as my wife Kelly, our two young children, the goofy dogs and I were taking a walk earlier tonight, we were very cautious about cars driving by and hoping the drivers were cautious too.

I heard something behind us, turned, and saw a blue SUV-type vehicle making its way toward us. It slowed down and carefully drove around. We moved over to the side for good measure. No problem there. A good neighbor! It was moving so slowly I noticed the "W 2004" sticker on its back bumper. Hmmm. Even conservatives, I thought humorously to myself, have good manners.

I looked up and saw our neighbors, Aysha, Amir and their four-year and one-year old sons about a quarter mile ahead. They are from Pakistan, are Muslim, and are our very good friends.

I watched as the SUV approached them, suddenly sped up, kicked up a cloud of dust, and whipped around an orange cone near the family. I saw Amir look at the passing SUV.

When we met by our driveways, I asked what had happened. Amir acknowledged that the car had sped up for no reason. It did frighten his little ones somewhat, but no one was the worse for wear.

I know exactly why the driver of the SUV sped up. He a racist thug who thinks that every Muslim is better dead and anyone who doesn't agree is a traitor to his country. His attitude is no different from that of Jessica McBride, or any of the other neocon thugs who travel the blogosphere, or make their homes on Fox News and spout their banalities to the nodding sheep in their audience.

One local blogger brags about a friend of his who recently got married. He brags that his friend is so brave because he says stuff this local blogger only dreams of saying. I linked over to that site. The person is a vulgar bully. Every other word is a cuss word and his brave actions include paving over the Middle East, and killing liberal traitors simply because they disagree with his twisted ideas about America.

I am not indicting conservatives. There are many thoughtful ones out there. But the ugly ones ... not much difference between their actions and those of Fred Phelps, in my opinion.

I'm so tired of them.

Carlos Lee Trade Unsatisfactory

A good write up at ESPN by Keith Law regarding the Milwaukee Brewers’ trade of Carlos Lee to Texas. He says ...

… The Brewers' haul is more quantity than quality. The club now has an option on Francisco Cordero for 2007 at $5 million, and could install him as their closer for the next year and a half, pushing the ineffectively wild Derrick Turnbow out of that role and perhaps into middle relief or on to another club. Cordero lost his job as Texas' closer with a rough April, but has pitched very well as the set-up man to Akinori Otsuka (who blew the save on Wednesday against the Yanks). Cordero is a free agent after 2007.

Mench has good raw power, but his results in the games haven't been good. His practical power isn't enough for a corner outfielder, and he's hit for more power at Ameriquest Field (generally a good park for home runs) than on the road. He's also never shown any ability to get on base. On the plus side, he has very good range in a corner outfield spot and is fringe-average in center. He's under Milwaukee's control through the end of 2008. Laynce Nix is an excellent defensive center fielder who can't hit a lick, and Julian Cordero is a 21-year-old lefty with a hard, sinking fastball and no idea what he's doing on the mound.

Read the entire article here (if you have Insider access).

I have to agree. It seems to me the Brewers are using mirrors if they say this is a good deal. I think GM Doug Melvin panicked. Melvin says the Brewers have not given up on this year and the acquisition of players who can play now proves that. I don’t agree. Especially when we give up our top-rated outfielder, Nelson Cruz, in the trade. Heck, the Rangers think so highly of him he’s starting in right field tonight.

And now we've added a $5M closer. I don’t know what other teams were offering. It seems that with two days to go before the deadline, the Brewers could have waited, played a few contenders off against the other and come away with something better.

Melvin has been good so far, so I guess he deserves the benefit of the doubt. But if this deal was made purely to sugarcoat losing Lee and give the impression the Brewers are still hopeful this year, then they failed miserably.

It would have been better to acknowledge this year was done, and get quality instead of quantity.

Right-Wing Nonsense

It really is pathetic that some righties have the audacity to claim they are god-fearing Christians and then call for the flattening of a section of the Middle East and turning it into a parking lot.

And for the clueless righties out there, that statement does not mean a love for or support of the terrorists. It merely states that issuers of statements like the one above are thugs … as thuggish as the terrorists they claim to so despise.

Conservative Hate Speech

Does anyone honestly think that conservative hate speakers such as Ann Coulter, Michele Malkin, Glenn Beck, Neil Boortz , Rush Limbaugh, etc. have nothing to do with the increase in threats made to federal judges? Or is it just a wild coincidence?

WASHINGTON - Threats against federal judges are on a record-setting pace this year, nearly 18 months after the family of a federal judge was killed in Chicago.

… Threats and inappropriate communications have quadrupled over 10 years ago. There were 201 reported such incidents in the 1996 government spending year and 943 in the year that ended Sept. 30, the Marshals Service said.

... Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg revealed in February that she and former Justice Sandra Day O’Connor were threatened a year ago by someone who called on the Internet for the immediate “patriotic” killing of the justices.

Read the entire article.

George the Magician

by Stephanie McMillan

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

In Support of Bryan Kennedy

An Evening with Senator Russ Feingold in support of Bryan Kennedy’s Campaign for Congress.

When: August 9th, 6pm-9:30pm
Where: BARROW & JUAREZ Gallery
207 E. Buffalo Street – Suite 14 – Lower Level
Historic Third Ward, Milwaukee

Suggested donation: $50 – all donations graciously accepted!

For more information, please contact Bridget Dooley at (414) 431-3693 or
Bryan is a democratic candidate running against Jim Sensenbrenner in Wisconsin's fifth district.

Duh # 2,346

"I think -- tide turning -- see, as I remember --I was raised in the desert, but tides kind of -- it's easy to see a tide turn -- did I say those words?"

-- George W. Bush

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Two Sides to Every Story

Your heart just has to break to see these Shiite children in Lebanon smiling and writing “messages” on the rockets that soon will devastate Israeli homes. What kind of sick society produces little girls who exult in the infliction of pain against people they’ve never met?

And look at the woman in the background, presumably their mother—clearly she approves! Sadly, until the Arabs let go of their culture of incitement and rage, I’m afraid there’s no concession Israel can ever make that will bring peace with these people.

Oops. Sorry. Faster than Jessica McBride nodding her head in agreement at the previous statement, let me just say that these were not Arab children. They were Israeli children.

It's sad, really, that any child, from any culture, be introduced to this kind of sadism. Kids should be allowed to be kids. There are too many who have had to grow up way too fast. And, unfortunately, some not given that opportunity at all.

h/t Jonathon Schwarz (the piece in italics is his)

Monday, July 24, 2006

Virgins With Guns

A true story.

In the war against terrorism, right-wing bloggers soon determined they needed their version of heavenly virgin(s) to incite their followers to fight harder. They thought and thought. Fred Phelps' women-folk were rejected. Shrill harpies with no chance for some action.

Ann Coulter was considered. But she's a man so that wouldn't work.

Michele Malkin was considered, too. But exiting this world to escape the mind-numbing screeching of their current partners was half the reason they were considering this course of action. Why ask for more trouble.

So they thought harder. Blood began oozing from ears everywhere on the right side of the cheaddarsphere.

Finally, these ideas were formed.

1) They must be virgins.
2) We like guns.

Heaven has been determined. Right-wing bloggers will soon be leaping, armageddon-like, into the spiritual realm to reap their reward for knuckleheadedness. See below ...

Thanks to my friends at The Original Above the Border Line (Chris' favorite blog).