Sunday, March 30, 2008

Now, where would they get that?

OK. I am no scientist, a fact which shall become abundantly clear. According to this AFP story Columbian officials have obtained a sample of the uranium FARC had for sale. The depleted uranium. Of course the press misses the point slightly. They're all worked up over where it ended up when they should be asking from whence it came. I doubt it fell off the back of a truck.

The stuff that comes out of the ground is like diesel fuel. They pick the dinosaurs out and there you go. In order to get fissionable material the uranium must be refined, like gasoline. What's left over after that is your depleted uranium. There aren't very many places in the world that have the necessary equipment to refine uranium. Columbia ain't one of them. Russia is. China is. Iran could be. Us, too, by the way, and we might not even notice (or report) 110 pounds of the stuff missing. But Russia, China, and Iran have all been trying to establish themselves in the Western Hemisphere. Towards that end they've been loving up Hugo Chavez, who probably thinks he's people now. So did one of those three arrange for FARC to have depleted uranium or did FARC get it through Chavez? Or did it come from somewhere else entirely?

Uribe has FARC pretty well whupped. The attempt by the media to make them out to be super-scary terrorists with nukes, IMO, is designed to build their morale and make them out to be serious people engaged in a civil war instead of what they actually are: a cross between Jonestown and Deliverance. The question that needs answering is where the stuff came from. Those people are trying to start something.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Quick question

If you were a terrorist -- foreign or domestic, I'm ecumenical -- which is the more tempting target, the Olympics or the Democratic National Convention? China would definitely kill your ass, but you may have meant to blow yourself up anyway, and you can target citizens of the country you dislike the most today. Denver will have looser security and a town full of people who'll seek to understand why you hate them, but will the world acknowledge your greatness if all you do is take out a bunch of damn Americans? Plus, no matter how hard you try to brand yourself or your organization George W. Bush is going to get all the publicity for allowing it to happen.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Extremely Creative Writing

This is a story about some oaf incarcerated in Florida, I think, who for reasons known to God alone would like to insinuate himself into the murders of some rap 'musicians' some years ago. Big whoop. Even as a pudgy white boy, do you need street cred if you're off the streets? Just asking. He lied to the L.A. Times about it, and they ran with the story without checking the facts. Again? Yawn. Some of the purported evidence was in the form of FBI reports that turned out to be fabricated by the oaf himself. OK, neat. Shows initiative. TSG lays out in minute detail how these reports differ from real FBI reports, in case you wanted to know how to avoid making the mistakes this brain surgeon made. And now you have my attention.

Exactly how retarded are the people at TSG that they'd spell out effective methods for forging FBI reports? OK, the mug shots are cool, and I loved WMOB, but there is such a thing as being too hip. Saying that the reports were forged is one thing. Leaking exactly how on the Internet? When your stock in trade is dissemination of authentic (public) legal documents? Leaving aside the myriad nefarious uses to which people could put that knowledge, didn't you just make your fact checkers' jobs like a million times harder? How long till this bites you in the behind?

Who our friends are

When you mention the name "Colombia" to the average American, he will form an immediate mental image, usually involving cocaine and Sean Penn. This is outdated and unfair. The guy who runs the place, Alvaro Uribe, has just about singlehandedly turned the place around. The tourists are coming back, even. This is despite having been engaged with FARC, a bunch of second-rate domestic terrorists primarily funded through the drug trade -- so you were right to think of Sean Penn. FARC's been at it for forty years and no one has declared their fight lost and insisted that they pull out of this quagmire and bring the troops home. Things in the jungle are not all skittles and beer, however; FARC's been having ... desertion issues. This comes from having a few of them being actually killed by the Columbian army. Playing soldier tends to lose its luster after that. Also, FARC relies on fear to hold its membership and the guys getting killed were the guys inspiring the fear. I expect a lot of the foot soldiers went skipping off back home singing "Ding, Dong, The Witch is Dead" in Spanish.

That Uribe has gotten as far as he has with Columbia is an amazing feat. If he had a little help he'd be able to wipe FARC out completely. He's not asking for military intervention, or even for cash. He'd like a trade deal with America. All of the cool countries have them. And seeing as he's trying to dismantle the single largest drug ring on the planet without asking for charity, you'd think we'd want to help Columbia out. This seems like just the sort of thing we as a nation would stand for. You'd think.

Recently Raul Reyes, the number two guy in FARC, was killed by Columbia's army. The hard drive from his computer reveals that he was corresponding -- through an intermediary, of course--with Massachusetts congressman James McGovern (do I even need to put the 'D' after his name?). McGovern was sympathetic to the plight of these freedom fighters and their enormous piles of cash and was apparently working on ways to assist them in undermining U.S. support for Uribe. And of course he denies everything. It was all a ploy to get FARC to trust them, they were opening a dialogue for negotiations (because the State Dept. is soo busy), yada yada yada.

McGovern's actions don't just benefit FARC at the expense of Columbia. FARC's BFF is Hugo Chavez, next door in Venezuela. He's been touting FARC as a real, live army involved in a "civil war" with Columbia. He told the UN he thinks FARC should be removed from the terrorist watch list. Not that Chavez cares for them overmuch; he's got his eye on overthrowing the conservative (for South America) Uribe and installing someone more sympathetic to his Bolivarian Socialism in that spot. It's not much of a stretch to say that Mr. McGovern and Mr. Chavez are on the same page in regards to Colombia's ultimate fate.

Why don't McGovern and the rest of the lefty (mostly) Dems just come clean and admit they've got Dictator Envy. They're drawn to every two-bit, tin-pot, overcompensating paranoid control freak that comes down the pike like simpering gay men to Liza Minelli. And, to continue the metaphor, they all uniformly deny the fascination with the personality cult and come after their perceived accusers with vitriol and venom worthy of the truly fabulous. But this isn't something trivial; in acting against the interests of the sovereign government of Columbia they are acting against our interests as well, and against the oath they swore to uphold when they took office. They're not on our side. And don't think the rest of the world doesn't notice.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Eat your heart out, Dersh.

Michael R. Ray is the god-king of all jailhouse lawyers and I am in awe of his accomplishment.

Currently finishing out his third term in the
Estill Federal Correctional Institution in South Carolina, where he's been doing time for fraud, the certified paralegal developed a hobby: filing petitions with the U.S. Supreme Court. And after about 75 tries over the last twenty years, he's accomplished something few actual attorneys ever do. He wrote a brief that persuaded the Court to consider an appeal for a fellow inmate at Estill, a guy named Keith Lavon Burgess. Burgess is a total lowlife and the appeal is probably going down in flames -- it's about clearly defining what constitutes a previous felony conviction for the purposes of applying a minimum mandatory sentence -- but that's not the point. The point is a regular Joe with no law degree managed to get the attention of the Big Boy Court. And for that he must be punished.

Mr. Ray is due to be released April 14, unless the South Carolina Attorney General's Office decides to prosecute him for Unlicensed Practice of Law. Ray is also king of the smooth reaction. To quote the press release he wrote himself:
"It would be nice to see the Palmetto State dedicating the thousands of dollars being expended in this (investigation) for a prisoner re-entry services program ... and for ex-felon job creation." Prosecuting him for UPL would be a shame if it happens. He filed the brief in forma pauperis to duck the $300 filing fee. Out of the 7,186 such briefs filed in that Court term, his was one of only seven accepted for review. The guy's good, real good, although maybe he should consider horning in on Grisham's action instead.

Shoot, shovel, and shut up.

One of the arguments made by the limp-wristed surrendering class for giving up on the Global War on Terror is that our actions only serve to create more jihadis. Kind of like Mongo from Blazing Saddles, the huge caveman-looking guy who terrorizes the town. Gene Wilders' character says,"Don't shoot him, you'll just make him mad." I'm not saying jihadis go around hitting horses in the face and knocking them down or anything. They have San Francisco "peace protesters" to do that for them. You never know which way a horse is going to fall.

Anyway, it turns out even a blind hog finds an acorn once in a while. They were right. Some of our actions do, in fact, encourage more acts of terror. According to researchers at Harvard University, yet, when the media cover criticism in the United States of the war, or public opinion polls about the conflict -- which always seem to say that the public is against the war -- these media cycles are followed by an increase in the number of attacks on civilians and U.S. forces in Iraq. They've even come up with a snappy name for it -- an "emboldening effect."

So when your elected representatives blather on about how they support the troops but not the war, when some poisonous harpy from CodePink gets invited to a congressional hearing so she can get hauled out screaming on CSPAN, when every network wails and moans about this or that milestone casualty, the world is, in fact, watching. Watching and planning. When the media gives jihadis the impression that public sentiment is against the war, then more Americans and more Iraqi civilians die. Not that they care.

Monday, March 24, 2008

Those are gonna be some wealthy penguins

This looks like it could be fun. They're going to start drilling for oil in the Falkland Islands:

I'm actually really psyched for the islanders. The reserves are estimated at about 60 billion barrels, about the same size as the North Sea reserves. This is the kind of thing that sets a country up for generations. Look what it did for the Gulf States. And, bonus, the Falklanders like us and share our culture. They're precious, too. The first thing they plan to do with the money is fix up the (two) schools and the hospital, of course. Then they think maybe they'll build a movie house and a bowling alley. Oh, stop it.

It's also fun for the rest of us. Not only do we get to taunt the dirt worshippers who want us to think we're running out of the stuff, but we're about to witness a fine piece of geopolitical slap fighting. See, the Argentinians see Las Islas Malvinas -- and the oil -- as theirs, and they're all in a bunch because they say England went back on a promise to include them in the oil exploration process. The word "intransigence" has been used, the diplomatic equivalent of the sudden stop of the jungle drums. This could escalate to war. Or a crappy bass solo. Can you picture another Falklands War, only with Gordon Brown and Cristina Fernández de Kirchner running it instead of Leopoldo Galtieri and Margaret Thatcher? Come to think of it, it might be a closer contest this go-round, if it happens.

I wonder what the lefties would do when faced with an actual War For Oil? Probably ignore it because it doesn't have an easily-cast Bad Guy. It's not America or Israel, after all. Plus it's on some frozen little rock at the bottom of the earth, and you know how protesters feel about bad weather.

Her Name is Kathleen Soliah

The name she's known by, Sara Jane Olson, is an identity she had stolen from a baby who'd died. In February of 1974 she and her buddies in the Symbionese Liberation Army kidnapped W.R. Hearst's granddaughter Patty to hold for ransom. In the course of a bank robbery in 1975 Kathleen kicked a pregnant teller in the abdomen, causing her to miscarry. She also contributed to the death of Myrna Ospahl, depriving her four children of a mother. Kathleen wasn't sorry about it, either; far from it. She said Ospahl deserved to die for being a "bourgeois pig."

She went what the fashionable call 'underground' for twenty-three years, married a doctor, had three daughters, a five-bedroom house in the classy part of St. Paul, traveled the world, expressed herself through community activism and community theatre, and generally lead the life she stole off Myrna. And when she finally got picked up the neighbors had a fit. Why, she was one of them, and that was decades ago, and look at all the good works she's done since, and how can they take a mother away from her children who need her?

So they let her out a little early thinking that no one would notice. D'oh. After five days of her hanging around L.A. they pick her up again to serve out the rest of her time. Imagine how awful that must be for her. I hope they do Mrs. Doctor from St. Paul like that every month or two, myself. Bourgeois pig.

Friday, March 21, 2008

No, stupid. Dig UP!

My, my, my, hasn't fate been unkind to Mr. Obama. His maternal grandparents, who raised and supported the offspring of their errant daughter, were straight up racists. Or his grandma was, anyhow. But it's not her fault she's a typical white person.

An interesting dynamic seems to recur in ol' Barry's life, one of evil, flawed women and the noble men who suffer them. What a catch he must be. I say we elect him. The second it all turns to crap he'll blame Michelle, she'll hack his huevos off with a rusty can lid on live TV, and we'll all feel so empowered. At any rate, I'm from DC by way of Virginia, and I don't recall having any kind of reaction "bred into" me about race. Perhaps it's different up North.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Comparative religion

Muslims don’t believe Jesus was crucified:

It seems that the idea of having body doubles around to take your whuppin' for you is one of those grand old Islamic traditions. How very brave they are.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

If you can't trust a bunch of coke-dealing terrorists, who can you trust?

"Colombian police charged Monday that they had found evidence on rebel computers that Venezuela has been funding Colombian leftist rebels and that the rebels were trading in drugs and uranium." -- Earth Times dot org, March 3, 2008

Drugs....and uranium? Please. Did they carry it around in the car trunk like in Repo Man, where they pop the lid and there's this bright light and the dude melts? Do you know how much uranium you'd need to build a nuke? About 11,000 pounds. And it takes around a year to refine. How much did they have for sale? 110 pounds. But that's not the funny part.

They were probably going to sell the uranium to Hugo Chavez, an enthusiastic consumer of FARC's other cash crop. The man cops to chewing coca leaves on a daily basis. Call me a cynic, but I think he's trying to establish plausible deniability for being nuttier than squirrel droppings. He's been FARC's most vocal booster (wonder why), even going so far as to tell the UN they should be taken off the terrorist watch list. That way they can proclaim themselves to be a real army with negotiating rights and whatnot. If the UN goes for that I think we can pinpoint the origin of most of the pharmaceuticals in NYC's water supply. But I digress.

FARC was asking $2.5 million per kilo for the uranium -- or 1000 times the cost of a kilo of cocaine. Columbian uranium sells for about $250 per kilo and in its natural state is too inert for even a dirty bomb. If Chavez was the mark -- er, customer, how funny is that, getting gouged by your so-called friends for low-strength product? After all he's done for them! They must know something about him the rest of us don't.

Monday, March 17, 2008

Obligatory St. Patrick's Day Joke

This alleged holiday is the Irish Cinco de Mayo.

That wasn't the joke. Nothing funny about 'drink 'till you're smart' day. Anyhow:

Q. What did St. Patrick say as he was driving the snakes out of Ireland?
A. "you guys comfortable back there? would you like me to roll down the window?"

That is a genuine Irish joke, told to me by an Irish ironworker named John. There was a whole pack of them on that one job, and they all thought my name was Colleen. I came this close to starting an international incident when John told me that's what they called all the girls. Oh. OK. So I can call you all "Paddy," then?

We came up with new names for each other. They called me "Kitten." I didn't mind.

Just some stuff I noticed

Here in America we're squawking over how the Democrats gamed the open primary system to pick the Republican nominee and how the Republicans are trying to keep Hillary in the race through the same method, with the result being the only sure thing about November's election will be whoever wins they'll totally suck. They pull the same crap over in Russia. Big surprise.

The party Putin supports, United Russia, won 99.4% of the vote in December's 2007 Duma (think Senate) elections. Voter turnout was 99.5%. I got those numbers from an open letter written to Putin and Vladimir Churov, head of the election Comission, by Sergei Kovalev, a human rights advocate and candidate for an opposing party. (check out his sign-off. Use it on someone.) United Russia is the media's favorite party. Wonder why. [Ahem? Mainstream Media, anyone? Why are they so mad about Hill, anyway?] Russia's main political parties like to give the impression they're in opposition but if you're Joe Voter you know what you're really going to get. [And so do we.] Public relations are also managed through the formation of non-governmental organizations (NGOs) that are quietly funded by Putin and whose purpose is to draw attention and resources away from legitimate and troublesome organizations that speak out against Putin. [George Soros much? MoveOn? Daily Kos?] Yeah, Putin's not in charge anymore. But he arranged for his BFF Hill--er, Dmitry Medvedev to take his spot, so he'll still be running the show. Kind of a 'Two for One" deal. During the campaign Medvedev did most of his public appearances with Putin. [well? WELL?] They were really good; when Medvedev spoke you could hardly see Putin's lips move.

Would it be OK if we found a better model to follow than this?

Like they care

The big, above-the-fold, one-inch headline on my local paper this morning is moaning about the fact that our military casualties are disproportionately from the rural areas of the country. Oakland has not lost a single soldier in the last year while Tracy has lost three. Three soldiers from San Francisco have died compared to 20 from Stockton. Berkeley hasn't lost any, but a couple of Marines have been threatened. On Shattuck Ave. The point of the article, I think, is that it's not fair that so many of those people out in flyover country are getting killed so we should just stop fighting and come home. Incidentally, 'flyover country' begins in Walnut Creek; they should just put a sign up at the end of Hwy. 24 that says "Here there be Tygers."

The cities of San Francisco and Berkeley and the county of Marin are mostly populated by the people who were run out of every decent community in the rest of the country. Many act as though their crowning achievement in life was to move here. The local news calls this place "the best place on Earth." No lie. When do you suppose was the last time the Bay Aryans cared about what happens to other, lesser people? They think forcing you to recycle accomplishes something and that observing Cinco de Mayo, the Mexican Arbor Day, means they embrace other cultures. Plus it shuts the help up.

Maybe the people in Tracy and Stockton and Modesto and Antioch care more about this country than people in Oakland or Kensington or Palo Alto. Maybe "rural" people (Stockton's a university town, btw) don't sit around and wait for stuff to happen to them. Maybe they know about good and evil and have no concept of "situational ethics," or they believe in The Truth rather than 'their truth.' Either way, they're protecting SF's butts (which is more than they'll ever do) and making it possible for the menopausal acidheads of Berkeley to stomp their tiny feet and cry for the camera. I only wish we could deport citizens.

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Reasons to Wake

OK, I do know it's not St. Patrick's Day yet, so I'll save my lame St. Paddy's joke for then. This is good, though. Every so often, maybe no more than once or twice in a person's entire life, perfect serendipity occurs, a moment of such flawless absurdity it remains recorded in the memory forever like Youtube. I had such a moment on St. Patrick's Day of 2000.

Once upon a time I belonged to the Piledrivers Union. Local 34, Oakland, Ca. I was a welder. No, not like the girl in Flashdance; she was an actress. It was hard damn work, and to paraphrase Steve Buscemi from "Armageddon," it paid well, the scenery changed and sometimes you got to blow stuff up. And I met some awesome men, as well as one or two of the biggest crapweasels ever to walk on their back legs.

The morning of 3/17/2000 I was working on a building foundation job in San Francisco's Financial District. My little corner of the world was right next to the fence separating the jobsite from Howard Street. So I'm all duded up in my protective gear, looking like the lesbian dream date, welding away. I finish the piece I'm working on, put up my mask, and there is a beautiful young man in a kilt, riding his bicycle up the street towards me. A healthy specimen, he was. We made eye contact and he registered surprise. I'm unmistakably female; I look like R. Crumb drew me. I don't often express these sentiments out loud to strangers, but I was moved to call out. I mean, the guy is riding a bicycle in a kilt. In America. That's one confident dude. And yes, his skirt was blowing up. Without thinking I said the first thing that popped into my head. "Baby." The rest of the sentence, "Let's get married for the weekend," was implied. And then he was gone from my life like the fading light of dusk, like the last sip of wine, like a loosely-held sucker from a baby's hand. Or something.

A male pedestrian gets hey-babied by a female construction worker. Welcome to California. Enjoy your stay in Bizarro World. And if you're that guy, I'm sure you remember me. The offer still stands.

Friday, March 14, 2008


The eponymous semiliterates over at Yahoo! posted this picture of NY Gov. Spitzer in their "News Photos" section Note the party affiliation.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Practical advice

Do you have to ride the bus, as part of a commute or for travel? Uncomfortable with the level of intimacy bus travel affords? Here's how to get a seat by yourself, as in, here's how to get someone to move out of the seat next to you and discourage people from taking it:

1) Acquire target seat.
2)Take no more than sixty seconds to pretend like you're falling asleep.
3) Relax your upper body and allow yourself to slump forward until you are bent double. Your arms should hang loosely so that your hands brush the floor and your chin should rest on your knees. Allowing your head to occasionally strike the seat in front of you adds a touch of authenticity. Try not to bite your tongue; that really hurts.

Just for the entertainment value, try this in an aisle seat. People will climb over the back of the seat to get out without touching you.

Worried about maintaining your dignity? Get off the bus. No, actually, there is another method that is somewhat more interactive and requires a prop. Carry your jacket, backpack, attache or soiled rag in a bundle as if it were a baby. Speak to it occasionally. Not loudly, though; you want people to lean in slightly to hear what you're saying. Make a point of noticing them and twist your body away while glaring at them in a hostile manner. With a little effort you'll have your entire half of the bus to yourself, leaving you free to meditate or whatever. You're welcome.

Oooohhh, Shiny....

The Gov. of NY got caught with his hand in the cookie jar, as it were. Maybe you've heard. We've all seen the various press conferences with his wife standing stoically by his side. Some people say she looks steamed. To me it looks like she's trying to remember if they had a prenup. We've all seen pictures of the allegedly sweet young thing he threw it all away for. You may even have heard her sing. Admit it. Like Patsy Stone from "Absolutely Fabulous," I too long for the days when scandal girls were gorgeous and silent. Here's my question, though. When will somebody notice that in 2004 as AG, Eliot Spitzer prosecuted one call-girl ring while procuring for himself the services of another? And that he engaged in money laundering to hide the activity, one he's put people in jail over? You'll pardon me if I don't hold my breath.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Why feminists hate women

In the latest issue of The American magazine Christina Hoff Sommers writes about the gathering movement to apply Title IX of the Education Amendments act of 1972 to math and science education. Most people only see this as pointless and/or grindingly stupid; I'm here to tell you that it's an evil plot hatched by bags of a certain age to insure there will be no competition from younger women for the cushy lifestyles they've made for themselves. Not only do they not care about girls or young women, they are actively engaged in wrecking their lives.

In 1995 Shannon Faulkner applied for and was accepted into The Citadel, a male-only military academy in South Carolina. She never mentioned to them she was female until after she was accepted. Because The Citadel accepted federal funds they were obligated to take her. It was revealed that Faulkner had been put up to applying at the behest of her local chapter of NOW, who busily set about turning Miss Faulkner into the feminist heroine of the age. If Miss Faulkner may have had second thoughts about attending a school whose administration felt she had duped them and whose student body saw her as an interloper who wanted to ruin the school experience they were hoping to have, she would certainly felt pressure to keep those feelings to herself now that all womankind was counting on her to go through with this prank. She lasted four hours among the Corps of Cadets and resigned before the first week was out. NOW dropped her like a hot rock and another woman profited from her ordeal by writing a book about her. Miss Faulkner, who had wanted a career with the Navy and who could have gotten into Annapolis where they cheerfully accept women, now teaches high school back in SC.

Miss Faulkner needn't have suffered like that. The "Womyn" got ahold of an impressionable teenage girl and convinced her to walk into the rotors for sisterhood, with the predictable result. The course of Miss Faulkner's life was altered irrevocably because she was pushed into an environment that doomed her to failure in order to aggrandize old women who'd never dream of putting themselves on the line like that. In fact, when they were coming up they had the nurturing and care accorded hothouse flowers. Everyone was rooting for them to succeed. They have. They've accomplished all they set out to do and more and now they want to prevent competition by setting young girls up to fail in their first independent venture, robbing them of self-confidence as well as just plain robbing them. College is expensive. Most people literally cannot afford to fail. If you flunk out because you're ill-suited to your major or the institution you have no degree and a load of debt. So you go to work for whoever will hire you first. That's probably not going to be a law firm or a consulting gig. Or academia.

The fossilized Women's Libbers are not only sabotaging young womens' chances to better themselves through education, they seem to be actively involved in keeping women not of their class poor and uneducated. All to aggrandize themselves, and if their pockets get lined in the bargain so much the better.