February 2005

Support The Troops: Protest the War

2/17/2005:   Stephen and Virginia Pearcey hung an effigy of a soldier on the front of their house in Sacramento, CA, with a sign on it that read, "Bush Lied, I Died."

Man, talk about putting your money where your mouth is...

Well, as you can imagine, since there are so many illiterate people in Sacramento (sarcasm only, folks), the effigy was ripped down twice the first.

The second day, the protestors arrived.

The illiterates and foaming-at-mouth-Republicans (often the same individuals) stood across the street screaming, "shame on you," and, "U-S-A, U-S-A." The free thinkers and reading supporters of the Pearcey display stood directly in front of the Pearcey home and defended their constitutional right to free speech.

One of the illiterates told TV camera crews, "The effigy that they hung up was disrespectful of our troops, and my being a veteran I was deeply offended by that. I know how we were treated when we came back from Vietnam and I will not let that happen to our troops now!" Of course, he hadn't taken the time to understand that, while the effigy was visually alarming, the sign that was hung on it said succinctly that the troops are not where the Pearceys' disrespect is aimed. In fact, the message was in support of the troops, and a direct attack against the President that lied to put us in a war where our troops are needlessly being killed. So maybe that vet got a dose of Agent Orange to the brain?

Another said that, "in a time of war, the Pearceys don't have a right to display an image of a dead soldier on their home." Well, yes ma'am, they do. And that right is protected by the First Amendment to our Constitution.

At what point did our government pass a Constitutional Amendment that said that, in a time of war, we must stop being Americans and lose all our guaranteed rights? I'd like to know that, because, y'know, if that happened, I missed it. I certainly believe that a new Revolutionary War would be in order the day that our government makes the decision to remove our rights down to that level. Anti-gun-control morons aside, the Bill of Rights is as close to a sacred text as we all share in the U.S. That woman needs to be retroactively flunked and forced to retake her high school U.S. Government class. What an idiot.

Another bottle blonde old woman, when asked if she felt that the Pearceys had a right to express their views, replied, "I don't believe so, it's seditious and he's a traitor." No, ma'am, Bush is the traitor. Of course, you probably voted him into office, didn't you ma'am? Does that mean you aided and abetted a murderer? Let me answer that for you, honey -- yes, it does.

On the right (as in correct) side of the street, the slogans ran more in the direction of, "what part of the 1st Amendment don't you understand?" The chants were "Bush Lied, I Died," and "Bring them home!" One erudite and patriotic lady informed the media, "I support the Constitution, which the people across the street don't seem to do. And our President doesn't even seem to do much of supporting the Constitution." The general theme was that free speech is a Constitutionally guaranteed right, and Bush's lies led to the unnecessary and wasteful deaths of thousands of U.S. soldiers.

At one point the Pearceys had a representative approach the morons... er... protestors with an offer: they could go 2 at a time into the Pearcey home to discuss the situation. The reply? Why, the same as it always is when people know they're wrong and are afraid to be exposed: "This is about supporting our troops, and we're not really interested in dialoguing with Mr. Pearcey." What an idiot.

Mr. Pearcey told the film crews, "The depiction is in support of the troops, but against the war. It was meant to show, is what we are disappointed with is what that... what that scene depicted which is that the President is leaving... has been leaving our troops out to hang and that our tax dollars are being spent to put them into a foreign country where they're dying.

Mr. and Mrs. Pearcey, you are good, brave people. I don't think hanging soldier effigies will turn into a fad anytime soon, but your heart is in the right place.

Bush Cartoon #3

2/17/2005:   Found another one. This one cracked me up. I was going to save it, but I figured, eh, what the heck...

The Grammys

2/16/2005:   While on vacation with the family, I got a chance to catch a few minutes of the Grammys, and I have three things to say:

  • I'm so glad I don't usually waste time on awards shows.
  • Marc Anthony is living proof that money can buy you love.
  • What the heck was wrong with Jennifer Lopez?
JLo was about a quarter note flat when singing with her hubby, Marc Anthony. Not just here and there, but consistently throughout the entire song. Which leads me to wonder if that little ear-plug thingie the artists use can malfunction and cause you to be off-pitch. Seriously, that performance wouldn't have made the first cut of American Idol. And I love Jennifer Lopez -- I've been a big fan since she first broke onto the scene. Heck, I was a big fan when she was a Fly-Girl. But her Grammy performance was not a Grammy performance, if ya knowhatahmean.

And the outfit: yuck. I keep hearing about how she managed to pull off the blingin' burlap sack look, but I didn't care for it at all. It's not her usual style, and her usual style is all that. I'd say that appearance was a complete miss.

Queen Latifah looked great.
Sheryl Crowe looked delicious!
Alicia Keys was stunning, as usual.
Gwen Stefani... yowza.

But my girl JLo missed the mark. Knowing her though, the comeback will be one to remember.

ChoicePoint: Identity Theft Without Choice

2/16/2005:   ChoicePoint, a company which collects your personal information from various sources and sells it to other companies, failed to properly safeguard that information, and now 30,000-35,000 Californians must, by law, be notified that the have been exposed to probably identity theft. Since California law states that such data theft must be reported to the people affected, those Californians are the lucky ones. Some estimates put the total number of people whose information was stolen at 300,000+, but most other states don't have that type of notification law, so those folks are just out of luck.

Of course, we won't be able to sue ChoicePoint if the "Class Action (un)Fairness Act" is passed into law by the George Bush Horse's Ass Club.

What we need is a federal law that states simply that an individual has a right, along with life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, to their own identity, and that those that would collect information pertaining to an individual are subject to penalties for disclosing that information without expressed, written permission. And if data is appropriated, those companies should provide, free of charge, a service for monitoring activity on your credit report, notifying your credit card companies of potentially fraudulent activity, and rectifying any problems that result from someone using your identity for any reason. That law should describe a new kind of insurance coverage specifically tailored to the information industry and should require that all companies that deal in personal information obtain said insurance. The level of insurance would depend on the type of information stored.

You see, the folks that got hold of ChoicePoint's aggregated data weren't hackers, at least not in the traditional sense. They just made phoney shell corporations and legally bought the data. You see, ChoicePoint's sole product is information. Information on you and me. And they sell that for a nice, tidy sum. And they don't bother to check the buyers out except to see if they are really an existing company. That's it. And because they were sloppy, 300,000 plus people have had their identities stolen. To put a fine point on it, they handed over Social Security numbers, mother's maiden names, birth dates, birth places, and driver's license numbers. Everything anyone would need to become.... You.

Feeling warm and fuzzy now? Good. Have another cup of coffee, stretch your fingers a bit, and write George a letter about how much you appreciate the "Class Action Fairness Act" and the protection it affords companies like ChoicePoint.

There are no WMDs.
Never were.
No chemical weapons.
No biological weapons.
No nuclear weapons.
No possible "mushroom clouds."
Bush lied to you.
Cheney lied to you.
Condoleeza Rice lied to you.
Colin Powell lied to you.
Donald Rumsfeld lied to you.
I told you Bush was lying.
And you didn't listen.
You believed his lies.
You focused on his propoganda.
You allowed yourself to be fooled.
You re-elected him.
You elected a liar and a murderer by proxy.

I told you so.

Class Action Unfairness Act

2/16/2005:   George Bush, Friend of the Elite and Enemy of The Remining 99.99% of America is pushing through the "Class Action Fairness Act." On the surface it sounds great: it says that all class action lawsuits must be tried at the federal level. This prevents situations in which lawyers "venue shop," or try the case in the state with the most favoable laws for winning the suit. And we all have heard of and despise lawyers that use the law to enrich themselves...

The problem is, federal courts generally choose not to hear class action suits, citing differences in state law. In other words, by adding a layer of abstraction to the process, it's quite likely that companies that, through gross criminal negligence commit destruction of property and allow people to be harmed or killed, will no longer be held accountable. What if the federal court decided that differences in state law precluded them from holding Ford accountable for design flaws that were allowed to stand for years because those flaws allowed Ford to save money during production? Ford would not have had to pay for knowingly using cruise control modules that burst into flames or ignition modules that failed and caused a loss of power to the steering and brakes at highway speeds just to save, in the case of the ignition module, $4 per car. (Those are actual cases that Ford lost, by the way, and had to pay out millions for. See http://www.antiford.com for more details.)

This next one is completely made up: What if the Hanford Nuclear Facility in Washington dumped millions of gallons of radioactive water because they had decided to change the maintenance schedule so that upkeep on the circulation valves was out-of-spec and the shut-off valves corroded and failed? The water flowing down the Columbia River would certainly harm those living in Washington, but what if the radiation had an effect on the people and environment in Oregon? Would these people have any recourse? Or would differences in state law prevent them from getting support from the power companies in Washington to support the children born with birth defects and the people who develop cancers as a result?

You see, while frivilous lawsuits must be curtailed, giving companies a protective shield from all lawsuits is not only not the answer, it's a disingenuous tactic for enriching the elite while hurting the "civil resource" that is the American people.

Thanks, Georgie. You putz.

Countdown To Korean War II

2/10/2005:   So we let Kim Il Jong play us like saps for the last four years, starting off with the Monkey Faced Frat Boy's "Axis of Evil" pronouncement, setting the nation on edge with an assinine labelling sure to make the world a direly more dangerous place for generations to come. But was everyone discouraged by this playground name calling? NO! At least not Kim Il Jong. He saw an opportunity to get his people behind a big thrust to develop the technology for and produce nuclear weapons. Just like Iran, Korea has decided that the best defense is a good offense, and now they're ready to play with the big boys. They've got missiles capable of reaching the U.S., and they've got the Big Mamma of WMDs for the missiles to deliver. There's some controversy as to whether those missiles are able, as designed, to carry a nuke, and more discussion as whether the North Koreans can size a nuke down to be carried on a missile. No detectable tests have been carried out, so who can say?

But do they have them? I don't think anyone doubts that part. Did they have them before George came into power? Nope. Did they accelerate their development program once George slapped them with his verbal gauntlet? You betcha.

Kim Il Jong is a warmongering freak just like George. He'd love any excuse to try out his new toys.

Thanks, Georgie.

Countdown To Iran War

2/10/2005:   Condoleeza Rice, whose integrity is self-impugning, said in the space of a single week that Iran is not on the U.S. road map for Middle East policy, and then turned around and announced that Iran better darned well stop making nuclear weapons.

Make up your mind, honey.

Now let's think about it for a moment. According to news reports, Iran has:

  • 540,000 troops (we have 150,000 in Iraq)
  • 3,000 armored vehicles, including tanks
  • 3,000 artillery weapons, including mortars, long range guns, rocket launchers, etc.
  • 300 combat aircraft
That's a lot of stuff. Forget the aircraft -- no one stands a chance against our airforce, period, end of story. And the equipment is old, the soldiers are mostly minimally trained conscripts. But half a million troops makes for a very ugly ground war.

I'm not saying we couldn't use our airforce to fight such an army, but then again, do we really have enough bombs and machines to take out that many people easily? I'm no battlefield tactician, but the numbers would seem to indicate that we'd have a helluva time with the Iranian Armed Forces. At some point, our ground troops would have to take possession of the entire territory. And what a territory. You think we've had it rough in Iraq with the insurgents? Try it in Iran. What a bunch of religious nutcakes.

Now here's a question for you: should we have wasted our various resources on a war against a pinned down and disarmed despot, or should we have focused our energies on Osama bin Laden, reserving our big guns for real threats?

Gosh, when it's worded that way.... Our President sounds like an ass, doesn't he?

Charles and Camilla

2/10/2005:   Camilla Parker Bowles has finally landed her Prince. Great. Chuck and Cami are finally tying the knot. Wonderful.

I really liked Diana. I really hated Camilla. And after seeing the latest videos of the doting twosome, I have to wonder why the Brits pay these people any mind at all anymore. What an unattractive couple, what a tragically anti-romantic story. I hope the boys weather it well.

Paul Abdul: Yowza

2/9/2005:   Paula actually got me in the mood this morning.... for writing in my OOTM, that is. I just had to say that Paula is just fantastic looking. I'm the same age as her and most mornings I look like I've been run over by a truck. Repeatedly. At least until I get some coffee, anyway. But Paula just keeps looking amazing, wearing the same classy attitude that she's always had. I still have her videos on tape somewhere. I'd love to see her put out some new material.

Bush Cartoon #2

2/9/2005:   Another funny I found on the 'net:

Another Teacher Pedophile

2/9/2005:   Pamela R. Turner was arrested for 13 counts of sexual battery and 13 counts of statutory rape of one of her 13 year old students. And after seeing the CNN news report on this, I have two things to say.

#1: Wow. I mean, have you seen this lady? She's as fine as the day is long. This is a woman that could have hooked up with any straight male standing. Man oh man, why couldn't I have had a teacher like that?

#2: She's a pedophile. Plain and simple. Treat her like one.

According to the CNN report, part of the attraction of doing this sort of thing is the risk. I'm sure there's a level of acceptability in it simply due to the double standard between women having sexual relations with boys and men having sexual relations with girls. Somehow, when a man does this, the girl is automatically seen as the victim. When a woman does it to a boy, the boy is seen as a lottery winner. And frankly, that's just not right. I wouldn't want a woman messing with the tender years of my son. Let him have a normal teenage experience in high school. I don't want a woman coloring my son's experience with the opposite sex, creating unrealistic expectations in subsequent relationships with girls his own age.

Miss Turner is no better than Deborah LeFay, who is pleading innocent by reason of insanity for having sex with a 14 year old student. Mrs. LaFey's attorney is arguing that her sister's death made her mentally unstable. Which of course is a crock. My best friend died right before my very eyes when I was 19 and I didn't run around having sex with children to assuage my pain.

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