Here's a link for the details. I'm going to try to be there.
Saturday, August 15, 2009
Friday, August 14, 2009
If you don't mind some slightly crude satire, here's another thing which might put a smile on your face. Susan B remarked recently that it would benefit our country if the mainstream media died a swift and merciful death. I found a site called Kill the Strib which finds itself athwart the Minneapolis Star Tribune (aka, The Strib) shouting "enough already". The site is a knock-off on the overly ardent propaganda site "Save the Strib" and it boldly announces in the sidebar:
While we appreciate comments from all vantage points, this site is totally a forum for political viewpoints. If you have a problem with the newspaper's content, we suggest that you post here the comment that was deleted at SavetheStrib.com. However, we are also looking for comments in defense of the Star Tribune, as we would very much like to point at you and laugh.
Here's the aforementioned satirical post consisting of a letter to the editor asking for business advice for a new venture. Here's the letter content:
Knowing of your newspaper’s reputation for service to the community and its unflagging efforts to improve the business climate in Minneapolis, I take the liberty of writing for advice.
Studies show that burglars avoid homes with large dogs such as Doberman, Rottweiler or German Shepard. But large dogs are expensive to buy, to maintain (food and veterinary care), and are time-consuming (walking, grooming). This hardest hits working families with lower incomes, who often live in crime-ridden areas.
It occurs to me that a homeowner doesn’t actually need a dog to deter burglars. All that matters is that the burglar believes the homeowner has a large dog. If a burglar sees big piles of dog shit randomly scattered around the front yard, he’s likely to conclude that the home has a large dog, and prudently bypass that home in favor of an easier target.
I have started a new business, a virtual canine protection service, for people who desire the appearance of owning a large dog without the expense and time commitment. I want to start a dog shit delivery service. My service would bring fresh dog shit and fling it on people’s lawns every day (early in the morning, of course, so the burglars don’t see me do it). The customers would pick up the dog shit during the day, when burglars casing the joint would see the customers working and become convinced that this particular home must house a very big, very regular, dog. Maybe several.
The reason I’m writing to you is that I’m been having trouble marketing the service. As crazy as it sounds, some people just don’t want dog shit thrown on their lawns. I couldn’t figure out how to get people to see the value in a pile of dog shit, until I thought of you.
I don’t read the paper and don’t want it delivered to my house. But I find the paper on my lawn quite often. The copies that don’t get soggy and freeze to the steps blow all around the yard. When I called the newspaper, I was told these were “complimentary copies” delivered so I could sample the product to see if I’d like to subscribe. Apparently, there’s no way to “unsubscribe” from this “service” as my repeated requests have fallen on deaf ears. Your Marketing Department has been a model of persistence. I want to adopt their methods.
I’d like to start delivering dog shit to peoples’ lawns. I was hoping to start with yours. I need a few people to test my service to see how effective it is – would you mind if I throw dog shit on your lawn for a few weeks? It would really help me out, and who knows, you might like the product so much that you’ll subscribe! As a special bonus, I’ll bring a can of Mountain Dew and pour some in well-chosen spots. Nothing says “big dog” like yellow holes drilled knee-high in a snow bank.
By the way, I wonder if you had trouble with perceptions, early on? When I pitched my ideas to focus groups, some people were concerned that unsolicited dog-shit deliveries might not be well received. There was considerable feeling that pissing off your potential customers was a poor way to increase market share. I pointed out that the Star Tribune has persisted in exactly this tactic despite declining circulation and plummeting revenues, so there must be a good reason for doing it. My remarks were not well received. Have you had similar feedback?
Thanks for taking time to read this letter. I’m excited about this new business opportunity and I very much appreciate any advice you can give me. I’m serious about signing you up as a product tester – I’d be happy to dump a fresh, hot load of steaming dog shit on your lawn to pay you back for the many “complimentary” newspapers I’ve received. Where do you live?
Hoping to hear from you soon, I remain,
Very Truly Yours,
Virtual Canine Protective Services, LLC
Damn, I wish I had thought of this great idea.
It's Friday; time for a nice little laugh o' the week. Over at Vox Nova, David Wheeler-Reed asks his readers to finish the sentence “If I were elected Pope the first thing I would do is...”. Then he asks us to keep our answers short. Michael Iafrate obliges David's first request, but not his second by posting a laundry list of, shall we say, rather progressive items:
1) Give Fathers Jon Sobrino and Roy Bourgeois a phone call.
2) Ordain some women.
3) Tell gay people that they are not “intrinsically disordered.”
4) Abolish every “military diocese.”
5) Issue an apostolic letter on collegiality/ecclesial subsidiarity.
6) Canonize Oscar Romero and Dorothy Day.
7) Appoint a lay theologian as head of the CDF.
8) Go “get in the way” of some wars with the Christian Peacemaker Teams.
Their are some things wrong within this list which I have to point out. First of all, using a telephone would show an obscene disregard for indigenous peoples who don't possess a phone, especially by the first American pope who would then be seen as beholden to the evil telecom giants. Why not send smoke signals to them? Or have it delivered by vegetarian carrier pigeon?
Secondly, I hope that when he goes to ordain "some women" that he would have a woman choose which ones to ordain. Because as a male, he'd probably be tempted to just ordain the ones he considered to be hotties. We all know that's just how men are.
Finally, he left off number nine which should really be to pass the papacy on to someone else. He is, after all, an anarchist and as such should not even be participating in such a blatant celebration of patriarchal white male power in the first place. Of course if he can ordain women, I suppose he could just make a papal declaration that he himself is female and a person of color. That would solve the dilemma handily.
You'd have to be stupid or blind or both to think abortion wouldn't be covered under these bills. After all, abortion is looked upon as a medical procedure, and is justified as necessary for a woman's health or well-being already. So why would it not be covered in a government-sponsored health care plan?
But Bill Donohue provides proof here.
In today’s New York Daily News, there is an article seeking to debunk various myths about the health care bills. Unfortunately, the two reporters were guilty of floating the myth that “None of the bills working their way through Congress provides any federal funds for abortion.” Thus does the Daily News join a list of other media outlets that have disseminated this nonsense; AP had the decency to reverse itself.
Abortion is in the bills. Here’s the proof: Amendments to explicitly exclude abortion from the bills have been sponsored by Rep. Bart Stupak, Rep. Joe Pitts, Rep. Eric Cantor, Rep. Sam Johnson, Sen. Mike Enzi and Sen. Orrin Hatch. In every case, they lost. Want more proof? When Rep. Pitts asked Committee Counsel about whether the amendment by Rep. Lois Capps would allow the secretary of health and human services (HHS) to cover abortion in the public plan, he was told it did. And since HHS head Kathleen Sebelius supports partial-birth abortion, is there anyone in his right mind who thinks she would balk at authorizing abortion? Want more proof? On Aug. 10, when Rep. Zoe Lofgren was specifically asked about this subject, she said, “Abortion will be covered as a benefit by one or more of the healthcare plans available to Americans, and I think it should be.”
Let’s be frank: abortion is no more mentioned specifically in these bills than appendectomies are, but because both are legal, both are understood to be included. That is why attempts to exclude abortion were made. That they failed should settle the issue. Yet the following pro-abortion groups continue to lie and say abortion isn’t covered: NARAL, Planned Parenthood, Center for American Progress and People for the American Way. Interestingly, MoveOn.org is firing e-mails all over debunking five myths about the bills. It is correct on all five. Noticeably absent from its list is abortion. That’s because they know it’s in the bills.
Why do you think abortion groups aren't trumpeting abortion coverage? Here's a tiny clue.
Rasmussen Reports: Obama approval index is now -8. Man, that has got to hurt the big guy. All he has to do for a nice bounce is get off his crack'ead health care government takeover plan and say "we're gonna work for the kind of reform that benefits all Americans" but really mean it. I'm not sure he's ever done that, but he should give it a spin, methinks.
Thursday, August 13, 2009
There's no sound, obviously, so you have to read the captions within the video for the play-by-play. Here's the text from the sidebar of the youtube.com video.
Captured in this aerial footage, a Hamas terrorist plants an IED and then climbs into a house containing uninvolved civilians. Later the civilians and the Hamas terrorist exit the house waiving a white flag, at which point IDF troops approach and arrest the terrorist.
This is just one of many examples of how Hamas uses uninvolved civilians as human shields. This example is particularly egregious since the terrorist used civilians waving a white flag to try to evade IDF soldiers.
Hat Tip: email from TIP.
Love it. Kathleen Parker, the Barry Lynn of the South. Ouch! Here are the funniest parts, IMAO:
Then there's Barry Lynn, alleged "Christian minister," whose stock in trade is to denounce any mention of religion anyplace, anytime. Look, I'm a Christian minister, but even I have to admit that the sight of a kindergartner praying is terrifying to most folks.
No, she was certainly not bashing Southerners. This she made clear in her Washington Post column calling for the Republican Party to "drive a stake through the heart of old Dixie."
What's with women and their obsession with vampires anyway?
I'm no Civil War buff, but I'm fairly certain there were no brave Confederate stands at Winter Haven against a superior Northern force -- unless those Northern forces were successful dentists from Larchmont. I would lay money that there aren't a lot of antebellum mansions on magnolia-lined boulevards dotted with statutes of Robert E. Lee and Stonewall Jackson in Winter Haven, Fla.
Well, poor Kathleen Parker. I think everything started to go downhill for Ms. Parker during the '08 campaign when Sarah Palin said "Less filling" instead of "Tastes great". Ever since then she's been begging for a catfight.
Wednesday, August 12, 2009
Excellent common sense approach to really reform the health insurance industry from the founder and CEO of Whole Foods Inc, John Mackey. Excerpt, with my favorite item in bold italics:
• Equalize the tax laws so that that employer-provided health insurance and individually owned health insurance have the same tax benefits. Now employer health insurance benefits are fully tax deductible, but individual health insurance is not. This is unfair.
• Repeal all state laws which prevent insurance companies from competing across state lines. We should all have the legal right to purchase health insurance from any insurance company in any state and we should be able use that insurance wherever we live. Health insurance should be portable.
• Repeal government mandates regarding what insurance companies must cover. These mandates have increased the cost of health insurance by billions of dollars. What is insured and what is not insured should be determined by individual customer preferences and not through special-interest lobbying.
• Enact tort reform to end the ruinous lawsuits that force doctors to pay insurance costs of hundreds of thousands of dollars per year. These costs are passed back to us through much higher prices for health care.
• Make costs transparent so that consumers understand what health-care treatments cost. How many people know the total cost of their last doctor’s visit and how that total breaks down? What other goods or services do we buy without knowing how much they will cost us?
• Enact Medicare reform. We need to face up to the actuarial fact that Medicare is heading towards bankruptcy and enact reforms that create greater patient empowerment, choice and responsibility.
• Finally, revise tax forms to make it easier for individuals to make a voluntary, tax-deductible donation to help the millions of people who have no insurance and aren’t covered by Medicare, Medicaid or the State Children’s Health Insurance Program.
Repealing the government mandates would be great. We could have cafeteria-style coverage that doesn't include abortions, psychological counseling, gender reassignment surgery--whatever you wanted to leave out. I don't have cable because I can't buy it this way, and by its nature, one-size fits all never benefits the consumer.
Tuesday, August 11, 2009
Is it just me, or when he says "I don't have to be here, I could be... ...somewhere else..." -- is that a little bit condescending?
Who brought up "warrantless wiretaps" anyway?
So what is the Christian thing to do? Send Senator Specter a life preserver; he is going under for the third time.
Here's the full story. I guess the translator acted stupidly on this occasion. I heard another report on the radio this morning that Clinton made an apology for the shrill tone of her remarks. I was thinking: if I was the student, I'd be a little disappointed that I didn't get a "beer summit" out of the deal, you know, kicking back with that powerful American babe at a local bar during happy hour to have a big laugh about the whole thing.
You can't blame an African translator, though, for confusing former President Clinton and President Obama. It's got to be somewhat mystifying since Clinton is the "First Black President" and Obama is the first African-American President.
Monday, August 10, 2009
Eric Cantor splains what a Czar is ("...[appointed officials] wholly unaccountable to Congress yet tasked with spearheading major policy efforts for the White House") and how many Obama has appointed. As of a week ago, Obama has appointed more than Imperial Russia actually had. He begins the article by citing Obama's broken campaign promise made last March: "The biggest problems that we're facing right now have to do with George Bush trying to bring more and more power into the executive branch and not go through Congress at all. And that's what I intend to reverse when I'm president of the United States."
So if the GOP does take back congress next year, will it even matter?