Monday, October 31, 2005

Edwards/Forbes Press Conference

Last chance before tomorrow's interview to offer me questions to ask former Sen. Edwards or Steve Forbes.

What would you ask them? What would you ask any of the students on campus?

Doesn't your philosophy mean that if conservatives were in total charge, public universities like this one would cease to exist?

Is time spent away from running your magazine and participating in vanity campaigns a disservice to the stockholders of Forbes, Inc. or do they prefer you out of the office?

You aften speak of two america's one poor and one priviledged. Isn't your own biography a refutation of that propostion?

You "bought" your first election in NC, for a second term polls said you'd have an uphill fight getting reelected to the Senate. There was no way you'd ever deliver NC to the Dems as a VP candidate. What again was it exactly that you offered to the Kerry campaign?

Is Drowning Pool too derivative of early 80s punk?

Stay You.
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Sunday, October 30, 2005

Happy Halloween

In Bellevue, they celebrate Halloween on the nearest Sunday - during the day.

At first I didn't like the idea, but then we had our first here and now we love it.

For some reason, Bellevue is the it place. Maybe because they have it on a differnt day, but kids and parents come from the surrounding cities to trick-or-treat here. Almost every house has someone sitting on their front porch waiting for th kids. On some streets, the sidewalks are choked.

Very Nice.

But I do worry that Halloween is becoming too commercialized. Aren't we forgetting the true meaning of Halloween? A time when Jesus dressed up as a pharasee and scared the bejesus out of some fellow Jews until they gave him pixie sticks and on the third day he still had a belly ache for eating too much candy. At least that's what I remember happened.

Settle down - it's all about fun - except in Newton, Mass. where a kid's school event has been cancelled become some parents bitched.

My first reaction was "so what". Kids should have parties on their own dime, not while the taxpayers of Newton are footing the bill, but then I wondered. Who complained? It's strikingly absent. What religious beliefs have been offended? Christian, Jew, or Muslim?

I have a feeling if it was some Bible thumper Evangelical that moved to Newton from Pig's Knob Georgia, the principal would have told them to take a hike. Jahovah's witnesses? Probably the same reaction. Nobody takes them serious. Catholics? They love halloween. All that death. Jews don't complain. Why do I have a sneaking suspicion that some Muslims are bitching and in an attempt to placate his PC nature, the principal pulled up his dress and squelled cancel Christmas. Why not? They've banned Piglet in England because of some griping Muslims.

At least tell us who's griping.

So now the school will have a "Fall Festival" where kids can dress up as their favorite literatary characters. Great! 300 Harry Potters and his babe Hermine. Next month, all the kids can have a day off for Turkey Day where they can - if they so wish - give thanks to ....well. An unnamed feeling of goodwill toward all person kind. Then a month later they can decorate a Holiday Tree with ribbons and sparkles and wake up with presents from the Holiday spirit left under the tree and wonder why in the hell there's a dusty old angel in Grandma's old x-mas box. What's that got to do with a Winter Holiday?

Stay You.
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Saturday, October 29, 2005

Another Saturday in the Salt Mines

"The Salt Mines" is the unofficial name of my basement. It's where I work on the weekends to bump up the income a little.

My basement is grungy, but it's functional. The floors are concrete, the ceiling is uncovered so the rafters and ducts and the hardwood floor of the upstairs is showing its ass side to me. The prior owners finished one wall with paneling, then while installing decided to cover the next few feet with z-brick, and then another 7 feet or so with some faux-adobe-I-have-no-clue-what-it-is
-suppose-to-be. We have old and handed down furniture down here.

There are four small windows, but it's always a bit too dark. But the windows do reveal a beautiful day out and I have some police reports to get re-done for the Enquirer since I messed them up to begin with and a large corporate job due Monday.....

And then I read that Cathy Seipp has had for several years lung cancer and I think I should embrace life and go have fun, but....this is life. Paying the bills, working today to improve tomorrow. I think I do a good job of balancing life and work.

So its another weekend in the Salt mines.

On the bright side I did an article on the upcoming Edwards/Forbes discussion - don't call it a debate - coming to NKU this Tuesday. I'll be there for the Enquirer covering it and since this journalism thing is just a side-line I think it would be fun to ask "boxers or briefs?", but I know I won't. So give me your ideas.

Stay You.
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Thursday, October 27, 2005

Kicking Her While She's Down

I'll do it!

Sorry that Mrs. Miers was roughed up a bit by this confirmation battle, but she just wasn't the right demonstrated by her withdrawal letter. See it here.

As noted elsewhere, what a Justice Miers writes would have been used as the basis for future decisions for - I hope - several hundreds of years. However, that first paragraph sounds horrible and the rest of the letter doesn't fair much better.

How about this passage:
"Protection of the prerogatives of the Executive Branch and continued pursuit of my confirmation are in tension. I have decided that seeking my confirmation should yield." Huh?
You have to work to write that bad. More natural and effective would be:
"My confirmation and my former duties serving the Executive Branch are in conflict. I have decided to withdraw my nomination."
This doesn't mean that she's stupid. She's just tone deaf to our language. I'm no Shakespeare and I do get paid (a pitence) to write, but I even have The Divine Mrs. M. do a once over on the smallest article before submission.

Wouldn't you have someone read for style and conflict a letter of this importance and will be discussed for at least a few national news cycles? Oh, I forgot about that Senate questionnaire.

And piling on, a good writer could have used the occasion to instruct a few people on what the Court means. Bad events can deliver good lessons and, if delivered well, can be timeless (see Gettysburg Address, Reagan's Challenger address, or his Pointe de Hoc speech). I know a withdrawn nomination isn't a death, but it can be used and it is wasted. How many Court decisions would have been wasted in a miasma of obtuse verbiage?

Eating my own and loving the taste.

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Tuesday, October 25, 2005

We Few, We Happy Few, We Band of Brothers

Happy Saint Crispin's Day!

Don't know why that's important? Shame on you. It's the most important event in Anglophile, Francophobe history. It was this day that Henry 5 earned back his rightful domains in France from the despictable Dauphin. He did it far from home and outnumbered. Some of his men prayed for reenforcements, but none were to be had....but Shakespeare - of course - says it best.

If a man isn't inspired by that, then he can't be inspired.

Of course, there was another speech that inspired me at 17 just 1 year away from finance classes at Ball State. God love it, he's so right.

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Monday, October 24, 2005

Link to Lileks and Questions for a Future President

Two points.

1. It's writing like this. That's good. Maybe great even. Done on a blog at no charge to anyone. That makes me feel worthless. I'm jealous.

No one reads poetry anymore. Mostly because it sucks. But I believe the blog may be the new poetry. 5 minutes of pleasure. Then you're done.

2. Next week boy Senator John Edwards and professional billionaire goofy guy Steve Forbes will be speaking at Northern Kentucky University. That's my beat for the Enquirer. Guess what? I've got 15 minutes with each of them.

They both have dreams of being president. What do you ask someone who could possibly if all the stars align and lightening struck maybe accidentally fall into the presidency?

I need your help. Really, what would you ask them?

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Life of a Freelancer

I'm still having fun with my burgeoning freelance career. Last night I submitted three stories to the challenger I'm working on. Tonight I go interview a playwright and director for a local award winning theatre troupe and I still have a few stories in the hopper.

My latest story to appear in the Enquirer was on a Katrina Fundraiser at Northern Kentucky University. It's here. I was asked for a longer story and gave them one at 620 words, but this one is a mere 320. I'm fine with that. I liked what I did with the original, but maybe space limitations ruled and it had to be cut. Although the cutting doesn't bother me, I do have two concerns:
1. Why don't I care? Shouldn't I be offended by my work being mangled? Shouldn't I throw an artist's hissy fit? My attitude is oh, well. As long as the check comes I'll be happy. Is that wrong?

2. I do get much feedback and I could be off base making my clients (the paper) work harder. Whether it's my investment clients or my writing clients - I feel a deep obligation to them. So I fret about it, but The Divine Mrs. M says that unless they bitch, leave it alone. We have a saying around our house - Don't poke the bear. I'll just leave this alone.

In case your interested, below is the original story as submitted. It's fun - at least for me - to compare to the one linked above.
When Toni Sheffer received a call that a scheduled performance for the Northern Kentucky Children's Ensemble concert had been postponed, she didn’t realize that it would lead to a large-scale fundraiser for hurricane victims.

However, this Sunday NKU will serve as the region wide gathering place for donations to help those that are still in need on the Gulf Coast.

It was unfortunate when the Overture Awards had to postpone, but since the event was already scheduled and the children were already practicing, Ms. Sheffer who serves as director of NKU’s Music Preparatory Department decided to go ahead with a concert and turn it into a fundraiser.

She called Dean of Students Kent Kelso for support. He readily agreed and a date was set.

Ms. Sheffer then went about planning a small event with some other performers to attract a larger crowd.

At about the same time, stay-at-home mother of four Christi Hoehn felt helpless. She had just dropped off another load of donations headed for the Gulf and thought, “it just isn’t enough.” She did some soul searching and the Newport resident decided to become an activist for the first time in her life.

“I thought, ‘If all the cities in Northern Kentucky just pulled together, we could really do something that makes a difference,” she said.

Ms. Hoehn formed an organization named “One for All, United We Care” and made phone calls and sent e-mails and letters to all 39 cities in Northern Kentucky calling a meeting to see how they could address the problem collectively.

“I never gave a speech in front of city officials before and I fumbled a bit, but everyone was wanting to help.”

Her plan was to have a massive 1-day food and clothing drive and somehow manage to get it to the hurricane victims. The first step would be to designate a central location for each city to bring their donations.

That’s when luck raised its hand. NKU Dean of Student Kelso also serves as a city councilman for Independence. Mayor Chris Moriconi had asked him to represent their city at the meeting. Mr. Kelso suggested the NKU campus as a staging point and combining the cities drop offs with Ms. Sheffer’s concert and fundraiser to make for one large event.

“At NKU, part of our job is to figure out ways to bring people together whether it’s with fundraising or issues that need to be debated in the pubic forum,” Dean Kelso said.

The event, the Northern Kentucky Gulf Coast Benefit, will bring people together this Sunday, October 23rd.

While the cities will be hauling in the donations that they have raised, individual donation booths will also be open as attendees are entertained by games, food, music, and a bake sale.

At 3:00 in Greaves Hall, Norma Rashid will emcee the concert organized by Ms. Sheffer. Fittingly for a fundraiser focused on helping New Orleans, the concert will include a number of jazz standards.

The NKU Vocal Jazz Ensemble will sing “Now or Never” and Miles Davis’ “All Blues”. The Northern Kentucky Children's Ensemble will perform “America the Beautiful” and “Deo Gracias” by Benjamin Britten. Other groups performing will include Metropolitan Opera Bass/Baritone Richard Cowen, the NKY Opera Troupe, and the Northern Kentucky Youth Sinfonia.

Completing the concert will be two survivors of the New Orleans flood, Ashley & Mike Lemmler. A husband and wife team, they have been staying in Northern Kentucky since Katrina devastated their home. Ashley is a singer and Mike is pianist. Together they will be performing “Basin St. Blues” and “Moon River”.

The grand finale will include a special jazz arrangement of My Old Kentucky Home arranged by Jay Flippin of Morehead State University.

And just an FYI. No I didn't attend. We were recovering from Daughter #1's sleep over.

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Saturday, October 22, 2005

George Will v. Harriet Miers

George Will tries to draw a line in the sand in today's column.

I highlight it not because of his argument, but because of his writing. When respectable people write this well against you, it's time to take a step down.

This is especially well done:
And Democrats, with their zest for gender politics, need this reminder: To give a woman a seat on a crowded bus because she is a woman is gallantry. To give a woman a seat on the Supreme Court because she is a woman is a dereliction of senatorial duty. It also is an affront to mature feminism, which may bridle at gallantry but should recoil from condescension.

As for Republicans, any who vote for Miers will thereafter be ineligible to argue that it is important to elect Republicans because they are conscientious conservers of the judicial branch's invaluable dignity. Finally, any Republican senator who supinely acquiesces in President Bush's reckless abuse of presidential discretion -- or who does not recognize the Miers nomination as such -- can never be considered presidential material.

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Friday, October 21, 2005

My Friday

7:20 am
I'm eating some sliced red bell peppers left over from a fajita night for breakfast at my desk. I just noticed that my keyboard is now pink from the juice I wasn't wiping off my fingers.

7:45 am
I don't believe in astrology. It's bunk. However, a habit I picked up from a guy that has since quit this office is to check out Page 3 (warning: adult content) each morning. Page 3 refers to the page of the British tabloid The Sun that for the past 30+ years has featured a topless lady. Now that's journalism! Each day, the Sun rotates a pic of one of their regular models. It seems to predict my day. Days when Michelle or Keely are featured is good. Days when Zoe is featured are bad. Others only yield a ho-hum day.

Again, I don't believe in astrology. Maybe boobology?

8:20 am
Speaking of page3 - The Divine Mrs. M and I went to a class on Islam last week. I thought that it leaned more toward a defense of Islam than an understanding, but, oh, well. A case in point: Sure - depending on the Muslim region or state - their woman are burka'd and beaten and can't drive or be in the presence of other men, but at least they are not exploited and objectified like Western women are in the media. True.

I can almost see their point. I'm one who doesn't believe prostitution is a victimless crime or that strippers strip only to make money to pay for their M.D. and not to work out issues caused by daddy.

But one point I did take umbrage with. We in the West don't objectify women. We objectify good looking women. The hot ones.

I've personally never objectified an ugly woman.

I have a feeling guys named Mohammad objectify their hotties too.

9:30 am
The mail man just came to the office. The USPS motto is:
Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night stays these couriers from the swift completion of their appointed rounds.
I think that's retarded. I don't want these guys risking injury or illness so I can get my junk mail. How much mail is really that important? If it is, wouldn't you use FedEx?

10:02 am
If I ever commit suicide it will be to a Billy Joel song. Not Uptown Girl. But some of the early stuff...those are sweet suicide songs. Piano Man, Captain Jack, Pressure, Goodnight Saigon, Allentown, there's quite a few others. Jilly Boel knew how to embrace his depression and make sweet love to it.

By the time you're done listening to him, you'll gargle the clorox in no time. Sure Springsteen writes depressing songs but I got the feeling he was reaching for it like all those Brit 60s rockers playing Robert Johnson songs.

10:38 am
I'm a fast typist. People notice this. It makes me feel girly.

10:39 am
I reread the above post quickly and my eyes contracted the first three words to "I'm a facist". That should make moonbatty giggle.

11:30 am
Went up to the grocery store to get some lunch. I work in a decent part of town. But everytime I go out during the day everybody seems like a freak, a spaz, the unemployed, the unemployable, the disabled, the drug addled, or a zombie-like third shift worker and - except for the occasional hot stay-at-home mom with a 3-year old in tow - they all have pain written onto their face. Sad.

12:25 pm
I know this is a great country where a man can accomplish anything he sets his mind to. I know this. I can grasp it intellectually. It's right there up in my frontal lobe. Antedocally, I've seen it happen many times over by men of wildly different circumstances. It's reality.

But I don't have this belief in my bones. There's a core inside that doubts it. My faith is cracked.

I think that core of doubt holds me back from success. I don't know how to find it or if it can be fixed.

I have the same attitude toward religion.

1:07 pm
I'm tired of reading/hearing about Harriet Miers. I'm also tired of the Supreme Court being so powerful and most Americans being so ignorant. I'm tired of uneducated idiots getting as much of a vote as me. RE: supreme court cases most only know Roe v Wade. How about you don't get to vote unless you can match the case with a brief description: the biggies like Marbury v. Madison, Dred Scott, or just the recent ones like Griswold, or Kelo, or Lawrence. If you can name more recent dead blonds the define these cases maybe you shouldn't be allowed to vote.

Oh, and how many patriots have even read the constituion or dec of indp. Neither is that long.
3:50 pm
Nothing makes me go into a rage as much as when I think some company might be messing with my clients. I get David Banner angry. You wouldn't like me when I'm angry.

4:45 pm
I've overdosed on cola today. Sugared cola which I don't normally drink. I'm crashing. That apple did nothing for me. Apple? I need a hershey bar with almonds.

I just checked my site meter and my hit count is going way down. Over a year of blogging and I get no love.

5:20 pm
I've been thinking of a post called "My Confession" that details the trouble mind and financial life of a financial advisor - me. I do ok, but not what I'd like. I practice what I preach, but my reality is far from my dream and all I seem to do is run on a treadmill making money and immeadiately forking it over.

If anyone would like to say I'm not taxed enough, I'll be happy to go outside and fight you in the parking lot.

5:30 pm
I'm going home. I'll pick up Daughter number 2 and hit the gym. Then it's home for the weekend and catching up on other work. Daughter #1 is having a sleep over. Yeah, that should be fun.

Thanks for spending friday with me.

Stay You.
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Tuesday, October 18, 2005

God Bless Iraq

Multiple Choice Question:
What's surprising about the above picture (via gatewaypundit)?
A. Voting in a recently fascist country.
B. Voters in Iraq feeling safe enough to bring the kiddies along.
C. A woman voting in a muslim country.
D. A little girl mixing with males "play" voting with her mother and father.
E. A family dressing up to vote.

I don't know if the little girl in the picture above will ever be able to vote herself when she's of age. Honestly, odds are against it. It's human nature to embrace totalitarianism. But if nothing else there will be the memory.

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Things I Did Not Know

I generally keep up with the news, but here are things I did not know about Iraq courtesy of the WSJ:

According to an Aug. 16, 2002, commentary in the Guardian--a British newspaper that often opposes U.S. foreign policy--one in six Iraqis had fled their country under Saddam. Millions left because of war, dictatorship and sanctions. Today, several hundred thousand have returned; only the Christians still leave. If Iraq were as chaotic as the media implies, it would export refugees, not resettle them.

Other indicators suggest Iraqis have confidence in their future. The Iraqi dinar, freely traded in international currency markets, is stable.

When people fear for their future, they invest in gold; jewelry and coins can be sewn into clothes and smuggled out of the country. When people feel confident about the future, they buy real estate. Property prices have skyrocketed across Iraq. Decrepit houses in Sadr City, a Shiite slum on the outskirts of Baghdad, can easily cost $45,000. Houses in upper-middle-class districts of Mansour and Karrada can cost more than 20 times that. Restaurant owners spend $50,000 on top-of-the-line generators to keep open despite the frequent blackouts. In September 2005, there were 40 buildings nine stories or higher under construction in the Kurdish city of Sulaymani. Five years ago, there were none. Iraqis would not spend hundreds of thousands of dollars on real estate if they weren't confident that the law would protect their investment.

Iraqis now see the fruit of foreign investment. A year ago in Baghdad, Iraqis drank water and soft drinks imported from neighboring countries. Now they drink water bottled in plants scattered across Iraq. When I visited a Baghdad computer shop last spring, my hosts handed me a can of Pepsi. An Arabic banner across the can announced, "The only soft drink manufactured in Iraq." In August, a Coca-Cola executive in Istanbul told me their Baghdad operation is not far behind. Turkish investors in partnership with local Iraqis have built modern hotels in Basra.

Cameras and reporters do not lie, but they do not always give a full perspective.
In the 80s Latin America tossed off their corrupt/oppressive/communist ways, in the 90s so did Eastern Europe. Maybe this will be the decade that the Muslim world progresses beyond their stone age fascism to embrace a peaceful world. Imagine if the same happened to China....and Africa...

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Monday, October 17, 2005

China Looming

The threats of China have all kinds of people throwing their skirts over their head and running around the room ala Kung Po chicken little fashion decrying the death of the west or at least the U.S. of A.

In my office, someone sees a news report about the billions of people and their industrialization and start to fret. I'm a masterful fretter but not over competitive geopolitical matters.

Yes, China is industrializing. However, it's still a pre-industrial (close to Stone Age) nation. Remember that book I wrote? In it I wrote:
During the 1980s, Lee Iacocca made a reputation and fortune for himself by bashing the Japanese and their auto industry. His two best-selling books had the tone of World War II propaganda films. Bumper stickers were stuck to rusting out American cars that read “Unemployment: Made In Japan.”
For those that don't remember the economics of the 1980s, the US was to succumb to the planned manufacturing might of Germany and the worker bee industriousness of the Japanese. As I further wrote:
However, by the year 2000, Japan was in an economic malaise with its stock markets at a 17-year low and Germany had a case of endemic 10% unemployment.
China's not going to take us over economically just as Japan and Germany didn't. They were rigid inflexible systems. NO! we don't have a plan for dealing with them. There is no plan. That's our saving grace. Planning in those countries locks them into failed actions. They can't change. They have to follow the plan. Where an economic system is free there's room for flexibility. The market will punish those that choose poorly and reward those that chose well. A countries economic survival can be equated with Darwin.
It is not the strongest of the species that survive, nor the most intelligent, but the one most responsive to change.
Ok, don't believe me and want to feel a little schadenfraude toward China, then read the wonderful Mark Steyn's little blip. There’s a lot for China to worry about...however it seems like Chinese chicks may do ok.

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Friday, October 14, 2005

Too Much Fun

I have fun with the stories I write for the Enquirer and the Challenger. It's my hobby and it makes me a few bucks. I wanted to be a writer from the time I was about 12, it's nice to have a sliver of those childhood dreams. I've given up on the dream of driving the Dayton 500.

How these stories come about is that I come up with a story idea, e-mail it my editors and they either say yes, or more likely ignore it or decline it. So I'll do a story every so often. It's fun.

Last week, The Divine Mrs. M and I brainstormed for about 3 minutes and came up with 5 ideas and my editors said "Yes" to all of them. 5 stories. Each varied, but each with a fast approaching deadline.

The next day, the Enquirer asked me to do a couple of stories a week on Northern Kentucky University. Go Norse! Norse? What the hell is that? Anyway, it's my "beat" now. I don't know squat about NKU except what's here, but next week I'm meeting with their PR person and the head of the school paper. I need to develop some sources. Two stories a week. This is just a hobby right?

The following day, I was asked by the paper's general manager to start doing once a week police reports for Newport and Covington (God, I love wikipedia) and be the moderator for their so-new-they-haven't-been-advertised-yet bulletin boards on the new

I can't say "no" can I? Each gig pays a little. The bills come each month whether I'm working or not, so I might as well work.

But yes, it's still a hobby. A hobby that's now covering the tuition payments - but a hobby.

I'm a little blown away that all this writing started from a letter to the editor I did in July of '04. Remember that?

Oh, and the deadline for a corporate writing gig that I picked up a few months ago is fast approaching at month's end....arghhhhhhhh!!!

Stay You.
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Thursday, October 13, 2005

Hai Karate!

I had a bottle of Hai Karate when I was about twelve. Rarely used it. I've never been much of a cologne guy.

Why did I write about his?

Because my article in the Enquirer today was about marital arts event that will be held this Friday. Here's the school's website. They were nice folks. This is my second Enquirer story. Nothing fancy but - hey - a month ago the editors didn't know who I am now I still have two longer stories to do for them. I still get kind of a thrill taking an hour or two, doing a story and having it appear in the paper. Well, tomorrow it's fish wrap...but it's still a thrill.

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Wednesday, October 12, 2005

Conservatism NOT!

Way back when I was amazed that the Democratic Convention kept labeling Bush an ultra-conservative.

I'll say it again for the same reasons: Bush is no ultra-conservative. With the Miers business, I'm beginning to think he isn't much of a conservative at all. The Laura Bush "sexism" charge sealed it for me. Mrs. B is a disciplined woman. I can't think of any gaffes that she's made since becoming first lady. That's got to be hard. So the idea that she slipped and said "sexism" on the Today show doesn't sound like an accident. Georgie or Karl wanted her to say it.

The cry of "racist" or "sexist" or "hater" is the modern day disent crusher most often used by the left or at least it seems so....unconservative-like.

But back to the court. Most Republicans I know I wouldn't say are conservative. Oh, they claim to be as they drop their kids off at public school, but they really aren't. They are conservative in the way of that great line from Catch-22 (from memory) "the farmer was against all government action - except farm subsidies - as creeping socialism."

Anyway, anyone who knows conservatives knows that the court is it. The big enchilada. The only thing worse than nominated badly is raising taxes. It's a touch stone of the movement. A Republican president with a Republican congress taking a chance with one of those once in 20-year seats is crazy. Put up a known quantity. A rock solid conservative who knows why he is and can say why. If you don't understand it, you're probably not a conservative.

So George Bush isn't.

Which makes me giggle because after all the hatred for Bush, what will the left do if a Reaganesque true believer is elected next.

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Saturday, October 08, 2005

TAGS Your It

Here's my latest article for the Enquirer. I'm having trouble on two fronts with these Enquirer stories. They are less feature oriented than my work for the Challenger (i.e. shorter).

I like telling a story better, but I think just doing straight news (I guess you can call this a straight news story) I think will make me a better writer. Trying to say something in 250 words is alot harder than using 800; actually I think my sweet spoke with about 650. There's that old saw "I'm sorry this is such a long letter, I didn't have time to write a short one." Like most cliches and stereotypes, it's true. Right now, I don't think I have the skill either. But it's coming.

George Clooney will never make a movie about my journalism (that sounds like a good thing) but this little story paid for week of school or a couple nice dinners out. Not bad for a little bit of work.

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Friday, October 07, 2005

Who Am I to Fear

As a father and a person who worries about everything, there's always a knot in my stomach when the kids are out of sight. They're in the neighbors yard. It's safe and nice and everything is fine. I know that. But I still peer out the window.

Everything ok? Who's around? Didn't that car already drive by?

I'm afraid of abductors and molestors and the just plain cruel. Strangers that can come along and destroy a kid's happy psyche without me knowing about it.

But experience tells me this is silly. There are no monster's lurching around my neighborhood.

Yesterday, driving to work, the big display signs above the highway listed another Amber alert. All it said was "Amber Alert, Downtown area, dial 511." Just as if it said as usual, "Slow traffice, exit 1a 5-10 min. delay."

And I thought, Dad got her. Or boyfriend. Or pervert uncle.

They found the girl today. Dead. Here's the story and her picture. The father got her.

As I said back in February in this post, it's rarely a stranger who grabs the kid or drags them into a closet or smacks them around.

The boogie man isn't lurking on the corner ready to grab your kids. He's across the Thanksgiving Day table. He's welcomed in as dad or uncle or the old family friend or the trusted neighbor.

Stay You.
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Wednesday, October 05, 2005

Defeat Harriet Miers

I find George Will a bit ponderous, the faux prof kitch a little hard to bear, but in this article he makes a neat little point about Bush:
In addition, the president has forfeited his right to be trusted as a custodian of the Constitution. The forfeiture occurred March 27, 2002, when, in a private act betokening an uneasy conscience, he signed the McCain-Feingold law expanding government regulation of the timing, quantity and content of political speech. The day before the 2000 Iowa caucuses he was asked -- to insure a considered response from him, he had been told in advance he would be asked -- whether McCain-Feingold's core purposes are unconstitutional. He unhesitatingly said, 'I agree.' Asked if he thought presidents have a duty, pursuant to their oath to defend the Constitution, to make an independent judgment about the constitutionality of bills and to veto those he thinks unconstitutional, he briskly said, ``I do.''
It's a strong point that at the time very much bothered me. Maybe more on that later.

I think what is really bothering me about this lady is the unjustness of it. I cringe when I write that, but as Will and many other conservatives have pointed out, there's others with demonstrably better creds than Miers who have sloughed through the last 25 years of judicial liberal/conservative battles who simple deserve to be nominated. If not a particular person someone who is one of their own. Someone that gives hopes to all those who've been working and fighting that it's worth it and the rewards don't go to those who kept their head down (and made better bucks than a judge/legal writer).

Stay You.
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