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  • Tuesday, December 30, 2003


    Busy, busy, busy...

    I swear on Ronald Reagan's grave (just wait...steady...hold on...it's coming) that I'll be back on Jan 2. Just like Sullivan except I didn't take your money and immediately go on vacation. It's just been nice for a few days to not really read the papers or The Corner or Townhall and just be involved with my family (apparently I have a wife and fourteen year-old daughter...who knew?) and high school sports (soccer tournament final tomorrow morning at 9) and to stop and read a book and catch up on the approximately 253 episodes of Law & Order that I've never seen, and maybe, yes maybe even go see a movie like The Return of the King that I hear is part of some kind of nerd trilogy.

    And then there is the quality time spent with Satchmo the Wonder Basset which generally involves laying on the couch napping and snoring... him, not me.

    In the meantime I'm pondering year-end lists and predictions and whether America should let Meghan Cox Gurdon live...

    That's a toughie.

    posted by tbogg at 10:20 PM


    Monday, December 29, 2003


    Blowing the pledge money on frappachinos and a bikini wax

    Tired out from raising all that pledge money, Andy is taking the holidays off. Filling in for the Puffy Pope of P-Town is Dan Drezner who will be going through great pains each day to remind us which team he bats for...

    posted by tbogg at 3:49 PM



    Mission Accomplished: Jason's Revenge

    How bad is it when you get smacked around by Jason from Foxtrot?

    posted by tbogg at 3:24 PM



    We'll stop saying "goddamned" if you'll quit making your kids call you "mummy", you squirrelly-assed bitch.

    NPR is apparently corrupting the delicate little minds of Meghan Cox Gurdon's devil spawn:

    An interview with actor Ned Beatty on Morning Edition was preceded by an excerpt from his recent performance as Big Daddy from Tennessee Williams' Cat on a Hot Tin Roof. It was, for many listeners like Megan Cox Gurdon, not exactly breakfast fare:

    This morning, as most, NPR was broadcasting to our breakfast table. Suddenly, we heard some film excerpt, I think it was, and a man yelling, "Goddamn!" Just as all ears recognized that, the man yelled, "Goddamned lies and hypocrisy!" It was 7:51 a.m., and we had four young children at the table. My eldest looked up in amazement and said, "Mummy, did he just say--?" Please, must we get this stuff from NPR? Can you not restrain yourselves? It may be editorially defensible -- "Well, the film clip was relevant to the story!" -- but please remember that you are beaming into people's homes and cars, and often your listeners are not always hard-bitten, cynical, worldly types.

    Let's see...the oldest would be...yup, son Paris who calls his mother "mummy". A traumatized Paris later spent the day playing Malibu Barbie with his sisters Phoebe, Persephone, and Chlamydia....

    posted by tbogg at 3:19 PM



    Bringing down the system from within

    People at Fox smirking behind the news division's back:


    posted by tbogg at 2:42 PM



    They work hard for the money...

    The people that work at Wal-Mart that is, not the Wal-Mart heirs who last worked hard when they were the fastest swimming Sam-sperm in the Helen Walton love canal:

    When the Forbes 400 began in 1982, there were 13 billionaires, and five of them were oilman H. L. Hunt's children. Today there are 262 billionaires and four of them are Wal-Mart founder Sam Walton's children. Including Sam's widow, Helen, the Waltons hold ranks four through eight on the Forbes 400, with $20.5 billion each.

    The Walton's combined $102.5 billion – up from $94 billion in 2002 – nearly matches the wealth of the three richest men: Microsoft co-founders Bill Gates ($46 billion) and Paul Allen ($22 billion) and megainvestor Warren Buffett ($36 billion).

    The Walton's $8.5 billion wealth gain in the past year is more than the total budget for Head Start, serving nearly 1 million children.

    While the Wal-Mart heirs are among America's richest, Wal-Mart workers are among America's poorest.

    Wal-Mart's U.S. workers – most without health benefits – average just $8 an hour, compared with $12 in retail trade generally. Wal-Mart's average wage is lower than the 1968 minimum wage of $8.51, adjusted for inflation. Now the world's largest company, Wal-Mart is rolling back wages in the growing areas it dominates from America to China.

    Funny. They never mention that in any of their commercials....

    posted by tbogg at 2:37 PM


    Sunday, December 28, 2003



    Looks like I'll be unavailable for a couple of days with a soccer tournament and a basketball tournament taking up more than a reasonable amount of my time. I will be back, though.


    But I would be remiss if I didn't point you in the direction of America's stupidest mom, Meghan Cox Gurdun, as we ponder questions such as:

    Are all of her friends as stupid as she is that they haven't yet mastered the physical skills that are required to simply knock on the door?

    What is so hard about getting more than one phone line in a house?

    What makes her think that anyone would ever think she was once a "thinking man's crumpet", and besides, who talks that way?

    All of which lead inexorably to the question that plagues us all, but is best stated by my wife:

    Why hasn't someone smothered this woman in her sleep?

    Ponder that.

    posted by tbogg at 11:28 PM


    Friday, December 26, 2003



    As I'm sure you noticed there was no blogging today. Instead it was a day of downloading, installing, house cleaning, putting awaying. throwing awaying, and try to get a new laptop to find the wireless network, which it finally did, but still won't access the network.

    I hate Dell.

    Oh. There was a bit of Tony Hawk Underground...but only about a half an hour.

    I'm tired.

    Maybe this weekend...Hope you got what you wanted for Christmas.

    posted by tbogg at 5:40 PM


    Wednesday, December 24, 2003


    Happy Jesus Birthday

    See you on Friday.

    posted by tbogg at 5:03 PM



    More Bush Bashing fun

    A friend just sent me this link with all kinds of games to play featuring our fearless leader, who is unelectable in case you haven't heard. Anyway, make sure you click on all the little boxes at the bottom to play everything.

    posted by tbogg at 9:46 AM



    I haven't gotten laid yet, but it's okay because I have a note from God...

    As the year ends The Virgin Ben still has yet to cling to a woman and "become one flesh" (which may be the worst pick-up line ever..."You. Me. A few drinks and then back to my place to become one flesh. Whadya say, foxy lady?".)

    The first of the Noahide Laws prohibits sexual immorality. The source for this Law can be found in Genesis 2:24: "Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and cling to his wife and they shall become one flesh." Several prohibitions are derived from this biblical statement. Homosexuality is forbidden, both for males and for females, since the goal of human relationship is a man-woman relationship for the purpose of having children. Even if a male-female couple cannot have children, their relationship still carries with it the godly seal. As Rabbi Yirmeyahu Bindman, author of an authoritative book on the subject, writes, "(homosexual relationships) remain empty of all the transcendence that correctly addressed love receives from above."

    This lack of transcendence applies to other relationships as well. Adultery is banned by the Noahide Laws, as are incest and bestiality. Premarital sex is frowned upon, since it cheapens the act of sexual intimacy.

    Yeah. Right. As I have said before: some people choose abstinence, others have it chosen for them. But wait! There may be hope:

    Because male-female relationships have the ability to transcend the physical, the Noahide Laws frown upon celibacy. God created the sex drive for a reason. The rabbis teach: "Do not talk to God and think of a woman; talk to a woman and think of God."

    Actually I think the rabbi said "...do it right and make her see God...or at least call out his name about six or seven times. Then snuggle." But, hey, I wasn't there, so what do I know. I do know that, if you want advice on sex maybe a rabbi isn't the best place to go...unless he's Italian, of course, in which case you should probably take really good notes. Anyway, Ben continues:

    It should be noted that a heterosexual marriage does not guarantee a relationship that transcends the physical and brings the couple closer to the divine. Jewish thought makes it clear, however, that any other type of sexual relationship must by necessity lack the ability to approach godliness.

    You know I'm starting to feel sorry for this kid. I look into his future and I can see that not once is he ever going to get to have really good hot sweaty sex with Miss Scarlet in the parlor with a bottle of lube. That kind of sex may not approach godliness, but for a few brief moments and a lifetime of memories it sure feels like it.

    posted by tbogg at 9:33 AM



    Go for the story...stay for the insult.

    "Liberal bias truffle-pig"

    Heh. Indeed.

    posted by tbogg at 8:55 AM



    Amuse your own self

    I'll be back in a few minutes...so go here to kill some time.

    (Warning: sound)

    posted by tbogg at 8:36 AM


    Tuesday, December 23, 2003


    "Bossie the Cow has been cleared, but we are keeping our eye on a swarthy steer named Akbar bin Bovine..."

    Hi. I'm Agriculture Secretary Ann Veneman, one of the few Cabinet members who hasn't made an ass out of themselves in the past three years...until today.

    Veneman also assured Americans the screening system worked, and no foul play was suspected. "This incident is not terrorist-related," she said. "I cannot stress this point strongly enough."

    All it takes is one suicide bomber-cow and next thing you know...well actually you just end up with carne asada which is pretty good with a nice salsa fresca, some guacamole, and warm tortillas...

    posted by tbogg at 10:13 PM



    Shorter Walter Pincus

    They lied.

    posted by tbogg at 9:59 PM



    Also it's more visually arresting than Alan Colmes...but then, what isn't?

    In a brilliant piece of programming Seattle Fox outlet KCPQ-TV will broadcast a blazing fireplace backed by holiday music on Christmas morning. The local programming director stated that ratings were expected to higher than the usual Sean Hannity show as the log is "...about 352 degrees hotter than Sean, as well having about 72 more IQ points on him."

    (Thanks to Abell for the link)

    posted by tbogg at 9:50 PM



    Mess with a Bush...

    ...get trampled like the peon that you are.

    Via Democratic Veteran we see what happens when one of the little people gets in trouble with our Royal Family.

    Within days of the July 2002 fire, Secret Service and other federal agents were at Patrick's house here. His mother, Denise Collier, said they told her that the young men had "blown up the president's boat" in what might have been "a terrorist act." One federal firearms agent told her, Ms. Collier recalled, that the incident had raised "national security concerns."

    Patrick then found himself in a highly unusual predicament. Instead of being tried in local juvenile court, he was turned over to the United States attorney's office in Portland, tried in Federal District Court and found guilty. He was given the maximum sentence allowed: 30 months incarceration, followed by 27 months of probation. He was then sent to a maximum security juvenile facility in Pennsylvania on the order of the federal Bureau of Prisons.

    Patrick's family and lawyers say that the decision not to try the case in a local court, as the federal Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention Act normally requires, must have had something to do with its connection to the former president. But they are the only ones directly involved in the case to make this point.

    Paula Silsby, the United States attorney for Maine, strongly denies this. "Absolutely not," she said.

    Jean Becker, who is chief of staff for Mr. Bush in his Houston office, said he had made no effort to influence the decision to try Patrick in federal court. Any suggestion that he did "is personally offensive to him," Ms. Becker said.


    From the whole of Maine, and all the other New England states — Massachusetts, Vermont, New Hampshire, Rhode Island and Connecticut — only one other juvenile is now in the custody of the federal Bureau of Prisons, Mr. Dunne said.

    There are so few juveniles in the custody of the bureau that it does not even have its own juvenile prison, Mr. Dunne said. Instead, it has contracts with states, like Pennsylvania, where Patrick is being kept at the Cresson Secure Treatment Center in the central part of the state.

    Cresson is for the most serious juvenile offenders in Pennsylvania who have proved disruptive in other facilities. Patrick is now housed in a wing where the other inmates are all mentally ill or mentally retarded, his mother said.

    Patrick had no previous arrests before the arson, and no record of violence, and was an honors student in high school, so one question his parents have is why is he confined in a maximum security facility with emotionally or mentally troubled youngsters.

    I guess there's no chance he'll run into Barbara, Jenna, Noelle, or George P. Bush there

    The peasants aren't revolting, but the House of Bush certainly is.

    posted by tbogg at 9:43 PM



    I meant to say seven cents worth of difference...hello? Is anyone still listening?

    The Bush administration opened 300,000 more acres of Alaska's Tongass National Forest on Tuesday to possible logging or other development.

    The decision allows 3 percent of the forest's 9.3 million acres, which were put off-limits to road-building by the Clinton administration, to have roads built on them and perhaps to be opened to use by the timber industry.

    Ralph Nader will be along any minute to point out that there is still not a "dimes worth of difference" between George W. Bush and Al Gore.

    posted by tbogg at 4:38 PM



    Lonely Jonah, the South Park Republican

    Looks like the good Christians of the Corner took the day off leaving Jonah to play by himself. And play he did, posting 15 times between 11:37 and 5:23 when Ramesh mercifully showed up and stopped Jonah before he posted this:

    It's hard to be a Jew on Christmas
    My Friends won't let me join in any games..
    And I can't sing Christmas songs
    Or decorate a Christmas tree..
    Or leave water out for Rudolph
    cos there's something wrong with me..
    My people don't believe in Jesus Christ's divinity..
    I'm a Jew, a Lonely Jew.. on Christmas.

    Hanukkah is nice, but why is it,
    That Santa passes over my house every year?
    And instead of eating Ham
    I have to eat Kosher Lekeesh..
    Instead of Silent Night
    I'm singing hou-hazch-tou-gavish..
    And what the f*** is up
    With lighting all these f*****g Candles, tell me please?
    I'm a Jew, a Lonely Jew..
    I'd be merry, but i'm Hebrew.. on Christmas.

    posted by tbogg at 2:34 PM



    New. From the man who brought you Dumbism....

    I see that Sean Hannity, Republican locker room towel-snapper and Fox News mouth-breather, broke out the crayons and has a new book coming out:

    Deliver Us from Evil : Defeating Terrorism, Despotism, and Liberalism

    Ann Coulter, or as the French call her: le Skank, is going to be so bummed that she didn't think of that title.

    posted by tbogg at 1:28 PM



    Mr. Limbaugh...your petard has just been delivered...

    Christmas came early for many of us this year with news of Rush's addiction, disgrace, and now his pathetic mewling about being picked on because he's a celebrity and a conservative and so on and on. Now that Rush and his lawyer have played the "privacy card" it's nice to see (via Atrios) that Rush has been hoist with his own petard.

    Which brings me back to an entirely different subject. The Michael Kelly Awards. Late in his career (he was quite the job hopper, don't you know) Kelly became a reliable lapdog for the right intially noted for his snide attacks on Bill Clinton's infidelities to the exclusion of discussion of such things as policy, governance, and, you know, stuff that pundits are really supposed to cover. Later Kelly turned his eye on Al Gore including this over-the-top-screed:

    Distasteful as it may be, some notice should be paid to the speech that the formerly important Al Gore delivered Monday at the Commonwealth Club in San Francisco.

    This speech, an attack on the Bush policy on Iraq, was Gore's big effort to distinguish himself from the Democratic pack in advance of another possible presidential run. It served: It distinguished Gore, now and forever, as someone who cannot be considered a responsible aspirant to power. Politics are allowed in politics, but there are limits, and there is a pale, and Gore has now shown himself to be ignorant of those limits, and he has now placed himself beyond that pale.

    Gore's speech was one no minimally decent politician could have delivered. It was entirely dishonest, cheap, low. It was utterly hollow. It was bereft of policy, of solutions, of constructive ideas, very nearly of facts--bereft of anything other than taunts and jibes and embarrassingly obvious lies. It was breathtakingly hypocritical, a naked political assault delivered in smarmy tones of moral condescension from a man pretending to be superior to mere politics. It was wretched. It was vile. It was contemptible. But I understate.

    What a sweetheart.

    As I'm sure you can tell, Kelly was a big supporter of the war. In fact he was so invested in it, that he volunteered to cover it personally as one of the "imbeded" journalists. Unfortunately for Mike it didn't turn out well. In an act of supreme irony, Michael Kelly, the man who condemned Bill Clinton for getting a hummer, died in the war on Iraq...in a Hummer.

    Which brings us back to Rush, the man who claims his privacy rights are being violated, yet who once said:

    There is no right to privacy specifically enumerated in the Constitution.

    You know, if the Michael Kelly Award were mine to give, Rush would have locked it up by now.

    posted by tbogg at 11:10 AM



    ...and introducing Twitchy, the malevolent bunny-rabbit.

    Well, it's time for another installment from I'm A Breeder, Not A Raiser.

    In this episode, which is 32% more sickening sweet than a Gnat anecdote from that big potty-mouth James Lileks, Mommy Meghan and children Molly, Phoebe, Violet, and son Paris (who is not going to grow up gay...he's not!) await the arrival of Daddy who is coming home from a hard days work as well as afternoon spent playing wheelbarrow with his mistress....

    "Violet is bleeding!"

    The voice streaks down through the air, straight to the maternal ear, where it fizzles out like a match dropped in eggnog. I can tell from the pitch that it's nothing too terrible, but I head up the stairs to check, just in case.

    Behind me, Molly and Phoebe are lying underneath the Christmas tree gazing at ornaments and lights and saying beatnicky things such as, "Sparkles," and "Red ones," and "Wow." Twitchy hops around on the carpet beside their outstretched legs.

    First off we will notice that Meghan is allowing her son Paris (wink wink!) to brutalize his sister upstairs while she is busy making herself an eggnog-Prozac smoothie in the kitchen. (I know she doesn't say that, but it's in the subtext. Trust me on this one...). But we are immediately distracted from this sibling child abuse by the sudden appearance of "Twitchy" whom we have to assume is the morbid and quiet Gurdon who spends his time leafing through Guns & Ammo, playing GTA Vice City, and drawing diagrams of the hallways and classrooms of Pleasantville Elementary. Who is this mysterious dark-clad child and why does Meghan shut him out?

    We then find that Molly, now on the cusp of her Sylvia Plath stage, has taken up writing:

    Molly smiles at me demurely, and holds out her notebook for me to see. Lately she has taken to writing the opening passages of novels:

    "Christmas was going to be tight this year, Hyacinth knew. She and Peter had had one of their secret counsels in the Fort. The Fort was a big empty low-ceilinged cupboard, which the children used as their fort. They had found some old boxes in the attic containing Christmas lights, and yes, their mother had said that they could take one boxful, and only one.

    Besides, she didn't think that they were going to have such a big tree this year anyway, and did you feel like baking brownies or Christmas cookies, then, darlings? Hyacinth was worried."

    Molly work shows that she is obviously worried about the economic status of the family what with her father leaving at 5am each morning to get to the employment center before all of the jobs as a day laborer are taken which is the only way to feed his both voracious brood as well as his wife's growing Oxycontin habit. Molly is also beginning to confront her budding sexuality and attraction to her fey brother Paris by tellingly naming her fictional "brother", Peter. Dick being far too crude for the delicate sensibilities of young girl who has named her alter-ego: Hyacinth.

    Meanwhile Daddy comes home and, reeking of sex, cheap perfume, and Hooters Extra Spicy Hot Wings, attempts to distract his wife and family from the telltale signs of his infidelity and shame:

    "Have a smelly sock," says my husband, lying back on the floor and putting his foot in Paris's face.

    Paris chortles wildly. "Ha-ha-ha! Listen, if they're not smelly it's okay, but if they're really smelly it's against the rules."

    Thus the seeds of a foot fetish are planted, as if Paris doesn't have enough trouble waiting for him in middle school.

    Suddenly the family notices that Twitchy is nowhere to be found. Could he be in the gun cabinet again which previously led to the "incident" involving the neighbors cat, once called Mr. Wiggles but now referred to by the children as "Ol' Mr. One Eye"?

    "Oh no!" Molly remembers suddenly, "Where's Twitchy?"

    "He was by the Christmas tree "

    "Twitchy Alert!" Paris bellows. The children tumble downstairs, loudly speculating whether the rabbit has nibbled the Christmas lights, or chewed a leg of the piano, or left droppings under the tree, "instead of presents! Ew!"

    We find Twitchy sitting calmly underneath the piano, having committed no obvious household crimes. He hops away as the children drop down on to the floor, and wriggle to get their heads underneath the Christmas tree. A Yuletide hush falls over the room.

    I don't know about you, but I was sure relieved to find that Twitchy was merely a free-range house-pooping rabbit with only two days to live before he gets his new name: dinner.

    And so all is well in the Gurdon household where dysfunction, loathing and existential horror are all hidden away in brightly-wrapped boxes tied with the ribbons of shame and repression.

    Now isn't that a nice Christmas story?

    posted by tbogg at 10:23 AM



    The Creature From Lucianne's Vagina.....

    is whining and lying again:

    I think I've figured it out. Paul Krugman is the media equivalent of John McCain. McCain was a reasonable, decent conservative who was implicated in a money-scandal. In response, he went batty about campaign-finance-reform. I think he's still a decent guy in other ways. But when it comes to CFR he lost the ability to think seriously. He claimed that everyone was corrupt even though he could not name anyone in particular who was corrupt.

    Something similar is going on with Krugman. He used to write some pretty reasonable stuff in the mid-1990s. He got paid boatloads for speeches, to sit on boards etc. He was up to his beard in academic-media-business incestuousness. Then he got his NYT column and he was forced to sever all such relationships. This freed him up to denounce everyone else even while claiming his pwn(sic) purity, even when it was revealed that he'd taken big dollars from Enron himself. Rightly exposed as a hypocrite -- and quite often a hack -- he did what is natural to most humans. He dug deeper into denial. He became more strident. More angry. he protested too much over and over again to prove he was the exception to the very rule he has asserted but not proved. He probably also became addicted to his fan mail (and convinced himself is(sic) biggest fans are wise and perceptive), a real danger in the internet age.

    Anyway, when I read him now iI(sic) see him as a psychological and political phenomena, not as a serious person who thinks about things in a serious way. I have no doubt his fans think the same thing about me and many of my NR colleagues. That's fine. My only complaint is that I wish we, as conservative cronies of corporate America, could get paid a fraction of what this shining paladin of the proletariat makes (working for the War Room of corporate media, I might add).

    First off, "when it was revealed" was when Krugman made the disclaimer in an article that he wrote about Enron for Fortune magazine. How devious of Krugman to "out" himself, obviously the sign of a sick mind or possibly a "psychological and political phenomena" whatever that may be.

    Then Jonah gets to the heart of the matter (which sounds an awful lot like Horowitz Syndrome): there is a conspiracy against conservative pundits that keeps them (the pundits) from making a living foisting RNC talking points on a public that doesn't even know they (the pundits) exist.

    If Jonah would actually get off the couch and do some work instead of begging what few readers he now has to do his work for him, perhaps he could find a corporate sugar-daddy like his good friends William F Buckley and George Will.

    Whoops. Looks like that gravy train is already off the tracks....

    posted by tbogg at 9:23 AM



    Making his holiday wish come true....

    I know someone who got a new Playstation II this year. Here's a hint. He's unelectable.

    posted by tbogg at 8:50 AM



    What a whiner....

    Yeah. She forced him to go doctor shopping and she gave him spinal cancer and he thought he was going to lose his voice and it's a liberal conspiracy and his dog ate his career.

    posted by tbogg at 8:34 AM



    Fake date notes from around the globe...

    Andy writes:

    SOUTH PARK REPUBLICANS: A lovely email I just received about boomer idiocy:

    While having a beer at a neighborhood bar/restaurant in NYC's West Village last weekend, I was party to a situation that I think you'll find directly on point.

    Three mid-50's liberals were going on about the capture of Saddam; how it was a conspiracy, that the president knew where he was at all times and picked a politically opportune moment to capture him, it was all about the oil, etc.
    The mid-20's girl sitting next to them broke from her conversation to chime in with the following, "I wish 60's sensibilities had stayed there. Someone points a gun in your face and you think 'My Fault', when you should be thinking 'You just picked the wrong fight'. Get your heads out of your asses".

    They responded with dismissive claims about Republicans and tourists from the midwest.

    She replied with, "One, I've grew up in Brooklyn. Two, I voted for Gore -- but I'll sure as hell take W. over someone who thinks the French are the height of moral authority and without ulterior motive."

    I asked her out on the spot, and have a date for this Friday. Foxy, Cunning, and Fearless -- wish me luck!

    This reminds me back when I was a freshman at a small midwestern college and I met these three coeds and ...well, I never thought it would happen to me!!!!

    posted by tbogg at 8:31 AM


    Monday, December 22, 2003


    The Fat Man Enters Stage Three....

    Elisabeth Kubler-Ross famously stated that there are five stages of dying or grief. They are: denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance. Previously Rush Limbaugh stated that the truth would come out (denial),

    Limbaugh did not directly address media reports that began surfacing Wednesday that said the talk show host was under investigation in Florida for allegedly illegally obtaining and abusing prescription painkillers.

    Premiere Radio Networks, which syndicates the politically focused "Rush Limbaugh Show," issued a statement from Limbaugh earlier Thursday saying: "I am unaware of any investigation by any authority involving me. No government representative has contacted me directly or indirectly. If my assistance is required, I will, of course, cooperate fully."

    ...then, following the raids on Limbaugh's assorted doctor's offices, his lawyer said that the state was on a "fishing expedition" because of who Rush was (anger).

    Pharmacy records included in the warrant show Limbaugh obtained more than 2,000 pills between March and September.

    Calling the search warrants a ''fishing expedition,'' Limbaugh read a statement written by his attorney, Roy Black, on his radio show Thursday.

    ''In fact, what these records show is that Mr. Limbaugh suffered extreme pain and had legitimate reasons for taking pain medication,'' he said. ``Unfortunately, because of Mr. Limbaugh's prominence and well-known political opinions, he is being subjected to an invasion of privacy no citizen of this republic should endure.''

    Now comes the bargaining:

    As attorneys for Rush Limbaugh went to court Monday to try to keep his medical records out of the hands of Florida prosecutors, there have been negotiations on a possible plea bargain for the conservative talk show host, according to a spokeswoman for his radio network.

    Keevin Bellows, a spokeswoman for Premier Radio Networks, said Limbaugh's attorney, Roy Black, had been talking with the Palm Beach County state attorney's office about "accepting responsibility for his actions." She also said Black "will be making news today."

    Bellows said Limbaugh, who recently completed treatment for addiction to prescription painkillers, recognizes that he may have purchased drugs illegally under Florida law and "certainly had more pills than he could ever use."

    However, she said Limbaugh never intended to sell the drugs.

    "He wants this thing to go away," she said. "He won't admit to anything he didn't do."

    Stay tuned for the depression. Good times...good times....

    (Thanks to Ben for the link)

    posted by tbogg at 2:52 PM



    But you're the one who's off drugs....or so you say....

    Another I Don't Like The Drugs But The Drugs Like Me moment from Rush:

    "I can hear some of you say, 'He's changed since he got back.' Of course, I don't think I've changed at all. I am who I am. My core values are intact, solid as always. Maybe you are changing. Have you examined that possibility?"

    Oh, and if there is another terrorist attack on America, it will be because George W. Bush is doing a good job:

    "The American people are not going to sit around and do nothing if a terrorist act happens again, and they aren't going to want to sit around and let the United Nations handle it. The president, who's been dealing with it, has a track record of success to show for it, is going to be standing very tall if something like this happens again, not Howard Dean."

    If Rush isn't back on the 'Hillbilly Heroin', he's got to be huffing can of Kryolan a day, at the very least.

    posted by tbogg at 1:48 PM



    If you read this:

    This was small change compared to how people felt about the geese. I now know that Mother Goose is a gross misrepresentation of the goose temperament. They bite, you know. This was news to me or I wouldn't have brought 6 of them. They were the only animals I could get on short notice, besides the donkey. Six angry geese can do a lot of damage in a crowd of a hundred or so running screaming tots. The mothers were useless. You'd think they had never seen agitated water fowl before, or Animal Planet.

    "Give them corn!", I suggested, handing out some little bags I' made ahead of schedule. They do that at the petting zoo and charge a dollar.

    "That'll be seventy five cents", I told the mothers, fathers, and grandmothers who grabbed frantically at my proffered bags. Clearly a bargain, but the parents were livid. I kept my hand held out in expectation, but they didn't pay. They hurled the entire bags toward the geese, who continued to honk and chase and bite.

    ...and don't click on the link, then there is something wrong with you.

    And, by the way, shouldn't you be sitting down with your kids and reading them The Santaland Diaries?

    posted by tbogg at 1:26 PM



    Tax dollars at work....

    Messing with the veterans....again:

    Ravinder Mittal was elated last year when he got word that Washington was sending money for his research project at the VA Medical Center in La Jolla.

    Once Mittal had everything in place to begin his $500,000 study of pain in the esophagus -- including the staff and $25,000 worth of equipment -- the Department of Veterans Affairs called again, this time to say Mittal wouldn't get money after all.

    Mittal had become a casualty in a continuing battle over the future of the agency and its limited resources, one that has led to the resignation and investigation of a top VA official, the departures of talented researchers and doctors, and questions about whether department policies are being guided by veterans' welfare or by politics.


    At the center of this controversy is the VA's Office of Research and Development, which hands out $400 million each year in research grants to more than 1,000 laboratories.

    Historically, about half of this money has gone to "bench" research -- the lab work that attracts talented doctors to VA medical centers, and that has led to scientific breakthroughs that have guided patient treatment.

    But under Nelda Wray, who led the research office until her departure early this month, the office had been putting new emphasis on clinical research, which focuses less on basic -- or biomedical -- research, and more on the best treatments and drugs for patients.

    Wray, a former physician at the Houston VA Medical Center, argued that the VA's focus on basic research was not serving veterans. Wray began taking money from lab science and putting it in clinical research. In April, she told 15 researchers -- including Mittal and doctors at VA centers in Los Angeles and Long Beach -- that they would not get grants that peer-review panels had already awarded them. Some observers said Wray's vision was so rigid that she chose inferior clinical research over superior bench research.

    "I have never heard people so upset," said Debra Aronson, senior science policy analyst at the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology, which represents more than 66,000 biomedical scientists. "(Members) were outraged that somebody could just come in and make these gross changes without paying attention to the impact the changes would have on VA patients."

    Arguing that VA-funded researchers were unproductive, Wray began using what some considered arbitrary measures of productivity, such as the numbers and eminence of journals in which doctors were published.

    She also gave less weight to the opinions of peer-review panels, which have long evaluated grant applications.

    ...and here comes the kicker (and you knew that there would be one):

    A Dec. 5 memo that circulated among top VA staffers said Wray, who was appointed to her post in January, was leaving her office indefinitely "due to a pressing family health concern."

    The department's inspector general is investigating allegations that Wray approved $750,000 in grants for two of her former Houston colleagues without going through proper channels, and that her office may have used funds intended for clinical studies on inappropriate items, including an "image consultant."

    posted by tbogg at 12:31 PM



    Misty watercolored memories...of the way we were...

    Sullivan today:

    IN DENIAL II: Hmmm. The New York Times runs a big story on the journalistic friends of Conrad Black, media mogul in ethical rapids. They detail how some leading conservatives have been paid handsomely on Black's "advisory boards" while not disclosing their payments. Who does that remind you of? Two years ago, it was revealed that Enron - yes, Enron - had been lavishing huge sums on friendly journalists, including the New York Times columnist, Paul Krugman. The NYT - despite devoting enormous resources to the Enron story - deliberately ignored the journalism angle. Krugman still hasn't disclosed the tens of thousands of thinly-veiled bribes he got from Enron, while he postures absurdly as a foe of the powerful.

    Odd. That's not who it reminded me of:

    Andrew Sullivan's latest controversy began Tuesday, when the New York Times published an article on the recent phenomenon of online "me-zines" -- scrappy, self-produced, sometimes stream-of-consciousness commentaries by celebrity intellectuals. But Sullivan's attempt to achieve what has eluded most online journalism ventures -- make his Web site self-sustaining, maybe even make a profit -- landed him in new trouble with his critics this week, after the story matter-of-factly reported that Sullivan had signed up his first corporate sponsor: the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America.

    PhRMA is the association that looks out for the interests of industry giants like Pfizer and Merck on Capitol Hill and elsewhere. What the Times failed to report is that Sullivan has used his own Web site, as well as his posts at the New York Times Magazine and the New Republic to repeatedly -- and controversially - defend the pharmaceutical industry against criticism over its role in the global AIDS pandemic.

    The controversy over Sullivan's site sponsor was short-lived: After reporters from Salon and other news organizations made calls to Sullivan's editors, as well as to journalism experts, about the ethics of a journalist being personally sponsored by an industry he frequently defends, Sullivan announced he would return the $7,500 annual sponsorship. But the larger question raised by the flap isn't likely to go away: How can a one-person "me-zine" develop ethical standards that allow it to accept the kind of advertising and sponsorships that go to corporate media monoliths, without the conflict of interest taint that naturally goes along with a journalist getting the personal backing of a controversial patron?

    posted by tbogg at 11:17 AM



    Starve a Democracy, feed an ego....

    Equal time for Ralph.

    posted by tbogg at 10:29 AM



    Because if they're nice people, Tim Graham's marriage will become a bigger sham than it already is...

    In a room full of dim bulbs, Tim Graham is one of The Corner's lesser lights. And when the New York Times wants to profile a lesbian couple that aren't butch enough to match his own stereotypical version, well, he just gets all whiny and pissy:

    These poll showings against "gay marriage" are obviously not a result of media immersion. For the latest New York Times exercise in gay-friendly propaganda, see this Andrew Jacobs piece. In New Jersey, we're introduced to two lesbians, "soft-spoken," "nerdy," with "exceedingly polite children," as "all-American and unremarkable as they come." Friends pipe up that they're extremely boring, really "Ozzie and Harriet."

    Dear New York Times, who do you think you're fooling with this unpaid commercial? Being touted as "boring" and having "well-maintained Saturns" doesn't make you deserving test cases for draining all meaning out of the word "marriage."

    Tim should be less worried about the gays stealing marriage from him and a bit more about stealing boring.

    posted by tbogg at 9:54 AM



    Plead incompetence...

    Not really, but that's what Condoleeza Rice should do if she appears in front of the 9/11 commission. That is, if they can haul her butt in before them:

    Poised to convene its first hard-hitting hearings in January, the federal commission investigating the 9/11 attacks continues to be at odds with the White House over access to key information and witnesses. Two government sources tell TIME that National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice is arguing over ground rules for her appearance in part because she does not want to testify under oath or, according to one source, in public.

    The Empress has no clue.

    posted by tbogg at 9:23 AM



    Lard mountain

    I would be remiss if I didn't link to yesterday's Doonesbury (for those of you who didn't have time to read it because you were out pumping up the economy).

    posted by tbogg at 8:58 AM



    Actually the President just reads the sports page, but keep going, you're on a roll....

    What happens when warbloggers attempt to be both lyrical and complex...they forget to make their point, unless, of course, they never had one.

    posted by tbogg at 8:52 AM



    "Chris, give it to me. Give it to me."

    Somone emailed me about this on Friday, but the transcript wasn't up. Atrrios has our gal Peg looking like a distaff version of Ari Fleischer.

    It's a marvel to behold.

    posted by tbogg at 8:30 AM


    Friday, December 19, 2003


    This is quite amusing...

    ...and so not me. An alert reader points out that if you type in tbogg.blogpsot.com in a fit of dyslexia, you get this.


    posted by tbogg at 6:51 PM



    Experience Means Baggage

    ...and having no experience qualifies you to write about it. We're talking our gal Amber again, who is a boundless source of unqualified offerings, suspect facts, and bizarre assertions. The best way to read Amber is in bite-sized chunks (the better not to choke on) so prepare to be dazzled:

    ...when it comes to dating and sex, experience doesn't mean wisdom. It means baggage.

    The biggest way this materializes itself is a typical liberal belief that one needs excessive sexual experience to... erm, "get good at it." Public schools now teach every and all sexual acts, from anal sex to S&M sex. Liberals perpetuate the lie that a person must experiment in sex to decide what they really like, otherwise they might end up in a tyrannical, unhappy marriage, where -- god forbid -- their lover can't please them!

    Nevermind that along with all this "wisdom" comes potential STDs, pregnancy, and emotional damage. We need that experience!

    Actually, if you were to go ask any person about their favorite sexual experience, my guess is that very few people will describe a lover who really wowed them through some wild, mechanical act. My guess is they will describe being with a person whom they greatly admired, were intimate with, and it was not their moves they responded to but their intellectual and moral character.


    Dating is not supposed to be something you get good at. Not if the fundamental goal is one lifelong husband and wife relationship. Dating is supposed to be a temporary process, not something one should master. If you find that person right away, awesome. If not, keep looking. But going in and out of relationships, sleeping with multiple people is not going to help you gain experience for that one person. It's just going to cause baggage. Let's state the real reason people date and have sex for marriage: it's for entertainment not experience.


    If you have ever noticed, many women who have been with mounds of men tend to turn their backs on men. The only thing going from guy to guy does is damage them. If they were really promiscuous, they often become lesbians. On the other hand, it is modest girls with few sexual experiences who still remain unabashed romantics and are completely starry-eyed over men.


    The primary preparation you should do before marriage is not experimental but theoretical. It is the difference between getting a map out and plotting your drive versus just getting on the road, getting lost, then finding your way around. Going mindlessly into a situation, in order to supposedly gain "experience" is called pragmaticism..

    One can only stand back and marvel....but I guess this answers the age old question of why men are so interested in lesbian sex. It's because the women were previously "promiscuous". I guess guys are just looking for a woman they used to "know"...

    Bonus reading...read about the kind of guy Amber likes.

    It's car-wreck good.

    (Thanks to Todd for the Baggage link)

    posted by tbogg at 2:05 PM



    Recent additions

    to the left side Hot Links:

    The Gropinator
    Riverbend...also known as Baghdad Burning
    The indispensable Juan Cole
    Just A Bump In The Beltway
    Crooked Timber

    Welcome. Make yourselves at home. Have a cookie.

    posted by tbogg at 1:35 PM



    I think we may have just filled up our nominations for Hypocrite of the Year

    Armstrong Williams make a late lunge at the finish line.

    posted by tbogg at 1:03 PM



    Nice kid you've got there, be a pity if anything happened to your Federal funds.

    Well, this is certainly appalling:

    Last summer Mark Spencer's 17-year-old son received a phone call from a military recruiter. Mr. Spencer told the recruiter not to call his son again. An hour later, the recruiter called their Mesquite, Texas, residence a second time. The next week he left phone messages.

    "It's a predatory practice," says Spencer, "to keep calling students even if their parents object."

    Predatory practice or civic responsibility? The government, parents, and some school districts disagree.

    "It's a George W. Bush thing," says Santa Cruz, Calif., school board commissioner Cece Pinheiro, referring to the Bush administration's No Child Left Behind federal education act, which became law in 2001. "We've been fighting this for some time."

    Deep in the education law's 670 pages lies a provision that requires public secondary schools to give military recruiters the names, addresses, and phone numbers of their students (mainly high school juniors and seniors). Some school districts responded to the new law by designing consent forms. Unless parents signed them, information about their children was not sent to the recruiters.

    This summer, however, over 20 California school districts - including those in San Francisco, Beverly Hills, Santa Monica, and Santa Cruz - were warned that such consent forms did not comply with the law.

    The problem: These consent forms automatically withheld student information from military recruiters unless parents stated that their child's information should be released. School officials refer to it as an "opt in" form because it contains only a "Yes" box to mark. There isn't a need for a "No" box because an unreturned form means a "No" decision, they say.

    Jill Wynns, a commissioner on San Francisco's decidedly antiwar school board, says fewer than 80 out of nearly 19,000 district high school students returned the forms the previous school year.

    The procedure didn't satisfy the US Department of Defense.

    On July 2, it issued a joint letter with the Department of Education that read, "Contrary to an 'opt-in' process, the referenced law requires an 'opt out' notification process, whereby parents are notified and have an opportunity to request the information not be disclosed." In other words, an unreturned or missing consent form should indicate that a parent wanted his or her child's information given to military recruiters, and not the other way around.

    Here's the kicker:

    Rather than risk losing federal funding for noncompliance (San Francisco, for instance, could lose $36 million), school districts are changing their consent forms to meet the government's demands.

    Got to feed the machine.....

    posted by tbogg at 12:21 PM



    Quite suprising...

    from the local San Diego Union

    posted by tbogg at 11:49 AM



    Just your average rightwing, chain-smoking, penis-pill pushing spam-jerk

    Fascinating story on "Spam King" Billy Waggoner.

    When the spam king hits the air on a recent Friday night, he's in prime attack-dog mode.

    Perched in front of a microphone, Waggoner is frenetic. He gulps RC Cola and smokes almost nonstop while rabidly holding forth for his radio audience on everything from child molestation suspect Michael Jackson ("Michael, I don't know what the hell you're thinking") to his loathing for an outspoken country music trio he repeatedly refers to as The Dixie Sluts ("She's just a sloth," Waggoner says of Dixie Chicks singer Natalie Maines).

    Broadcast onto the Internet five nights a week, "The Bill Waggoner Show" is a fusion of right-wing political talk and occasional forays into paranormal phenomena and government cover-ups. Imagine Rush Limbaugh taking over UFO freak-conspiracy theorist Art Bell's radio show and you'll get a pretty good idea.

    Waggoner bills the show as "politically incorrect extreme talk," but he gets more calls from listeners when his subjects center on the metaphysical rather than the political.

    The show is broadcast from one of Waggoner's homes in a living room lighted by 11 lava lamps. Scores of computer cables run across the heavily stained carpet, up the walls, through desks and over a roof beam. The room is decorated with posters for "Scarface" and "The Matrix" movies. From a different poster, a shapely woman in an American flag bikini smiles upon Waggoner as he speaks to his listeners.

    He drinks RC Cola?

    Now that's weird.

    (thanks to Alice for the link)

    posted by tbogg at 11:26 AM



    Because every learning-on-the-job action-hero Governor needs a lesbian racist on his team...

    Via Democratic Veteran we see that Tammy Bruce is working with der Gropenfuhrer (exchanging 'war stories' if you know what I mean).

    Via The Daily Howler we see... well... how should we put this? She has a problem with people of the dusky hue.

    (Added): Todays Howler installment.

    posted by tbogg at 11:11 AM



    Scrooge the Poor

    It's getting so that you can tell the difference between parody and sincerity.

    Take this from the Libertarian Ludwig Von Mises Institute:

    No doubt Cratchit needs—i.e., wants—more, to support his family and care for Tiny Tim. But Scrooge did not force Cratchit to father children he is having difficulty supporting. If Cratchit had children while suspecting he would be unable to afford them, he, not Scrooge, is responsible for their plight. And if Cratchit didn't know how expensive they would be, why must Scrooge assume the burden of Cratchit's misjudgment?

    As for that one lump of coal Scrooge allows him, it bears emphasis that Cratchit has not been chained to his chilly desk. If he stays there, he shows by his behavior that he prefers his present wages-plus-comfort package to any other he has found, or supposes himself likely to find. Actions speak louder than grumbling, and the reader can hardly complain about what Cratchit evidently finds satisfactory.

    More notorious even than his miserly ways are Scrooge's cynical words. "Are there no prisons," he jibes when solicited for charity, "and the Union workhouses?"

    Terrible, right? Lacking in compassion?

    Not necessarily. As Scrooge observes, he supports those institutions with his taxes. Already forced to help those who can't or won't help themselves, it is not unreasonable for him to balk at volunteering additional funds for their extra comfort.

    Marvin Olasky couldn't have put it any better.

    (Thanks to R for the link)

    posted by tbogg at 11:00 AM



    Well, somebody already wrote Good Dog, Carl...

    I don't know how this passed my notice but I just found out that uber-breeder Karen Santorum has a new book out on manners for children called: Everyday Graces: A Child's Book of Good Manners . Taking a tip from Bill Bennett, Mrs. Santorum has collected excerpts from other people's work and compiled it under her own name which is much easier than actually writing a book, leaving more time for other activities such as gambling away millions or doing it doggy-style with the hubby.

    Under such headings as "Honor Your Mother and Father," "Please and Thank You," "No Hurtful Words, "Good Behavior in Sport," and "Showing Respect for Country," Mrs. Santorum has arranged a collection of stories and poems that will develop and enrich the moral imagination.

    Hmmmm. Nothing about "Quit Crying and Hold Gabriel Up For The Camera...Now Smile for Daddy."....

    Anyway, the School Library Journal didn't exactly give it two Dewey Decimal Systems up:

    Grade 3-6-This book draws on selections from children's literature to make its pendantic point. Each chapter addresses a particular aspect of etiquette through excerpts from novels, stories, or poems. Topics include good manners at home, using words wisely, table manners, washing and dressing, appreciating people with disabilities, kindness toward the elderly and sick, writing letters, how to behave in church, and respecting our country. For instance, a chapter from Anne of Green Gables in which Anne loses her temper at school is followed by Santorum's summing it up with: "If another child teases you during class time, wait until the teacher is done with the lesson and discuss the problem with him." Poor Pippi Longstocking, who has charmed children and adults for years, gets quite a scolding: "Don't talk back to your teachers or interrupt like Pippi did, it's very disrespectful." Readers are sure to be turned off by the didactic tone. Stick with Aliki's Manners (1990) and Hello! Good-bye! (1996; o.p., both Greenwillow), as well as Martha Whitmore Hickman's Good Manners for Girls and Boys (Crown, 1985; o.p.) and Elizabeth James and Carol Barkin's Social Smarts (Clarion, 1996).

    But other's rushed to her defense:

    "A lovely and touching family reading experience. Here is a delightful and poignant opportunity for parent and child to bond in love and wisdom." --Dr. Laura Schlessinger, national radio talk show host and author of the children's book Where's God?

    "Karen Santorum touches a raw nerve. The moral decay in American life has led to the coarsening of America. Slothfulness, remember, is one of the seven deadly sins. Through stories, poems, fables and myths, here is a great resource to restore manners." Charles W. Colson, Chairman, Prison Fellowship Ministries

    "It's also book of manners for Rock Stars . . . " --Bono, singer/songwriter, U2

    Granted that list included an Internet pornstar, an ex-felon, and a rockstar that says the F-word on national TV like he was James Lileks or something. But, still....

    posted by tbogg at 10:43 AM



    The further adventures of America's Perkiest Dumb Mom

    When we last left Meghan Gurdon she was mewling on about how hard it was to have a simple dinner with four children that she had obviously been raising as hyperactive wolves.

    This week she takes the kids out in public, we find out that she can't use the word nipple in front of the kids and we also are suprised to find out that the child named Paris is, in fact, a boy who is probably unaware that his future will be filled with daily ass-kickings in middle school from other kids because his name is Paris Gurdon, and they could care less that Paris was the guy who killed Achilles and stole Helen and started the Trojan War...he's still going to get his ass kicked.

    Maybe she should rename him: Freedom.

    posted by tbogg at 10:02 AM



    Blogging around

    Since I was otherwise occupied last night (I was stretched out in on the couch watching SDSU basketball...that counts) here's what's going on in the, as James "Potty Mouth" Lileks would put it, f-ing blogosphere:

    No More Mr. Nice Blog points out that the general public really really really thinks that we're going to find Osama because we found Saddam. The guys who are supposed to find him think otherwise. No mention is made of finding the Anthrax mailer, the outer of Valerie Plame, or the person who thought it was a good idea to hire Ben Affleck for a John Woo movie.

    Kevin Drum has a great post up about the war and how we got there.

    Jim at Rittenhouse has a whole bunch of stuff

    Mary at Pacific Views on Homeless for the Holidays

    Amy on The Case of The Missing Jebus Baby.

    Jon at San Diego Soliloquies talks about Jennifer Roback who can't have children... so gays shouldn't get married.

    posted by tbogg at 9:42 AM


    Thursday, December 18, 2003


    Simple Life beats simpleton

    Maybe if we release that video of him in a motel with Condi.....

    NEW YORK (Reuters) - He may have beaten Saddam Hussein, but President George W. Bush got clobbered by slinky socialite Paris Hilton when her television show got higher ratings than Bush's exclusive ABC interview on Tuesday night.

    More Americans watched Fox's "The Simple Life," which depicts the 22-year-old hotel heiress working on an Arkansas farm, than saw Bush being interviewed by Diane Sawyer, Nielsen Media Research said on Thursday.

    "The Simple Life" may have been helped by the public saga of a video, making the rounds of the Internet, showing the granddaughter of hotel chain founder Conrad Hilton engaged in various sex acts with ex-boyfriend Rick Salomon.

    "The Simple Life" drew 11.8 million viewers while Bush's ABC "Prime Time" interview drew 11 million, Nielsen said.

    posted by tbogg at 5:58 PM



    Da-Da a hypocwit....

    James Lilek's today:

    Item! John Kerry skillfully deploys the F-word in a Rolling Stone interview, wooing that coveted demographic of superannuated rockers looking for nekkid Britney pix. If you believe that civil language is a quaint Victorian hang-up unsuited to modern times, you're cheering Kerry. But he just guaranteed public discourse will get coarser and coarser, until voters wonder whether a man who doesn't curse like a hooker thinks he's better than the rest of us. Parents across the land say, "Thanks, John Kerry! Nice role-modeling, you blankety-blank!"

    Coupla weeks ago Lileks:

    Hey, Salam? F*** you. I know you're the famous giggly blogger who gave us all a riveting view of the inner circle before the war, and thus know more about the situation than I do. Granted. But there's a picture on the front page of my local paper today: third Minnesotan killed in Iraq. He died doing what you never had the stones to do: pick up a rifle and face the Ba'athists. You owe him.

    So where's our nekkid Britney pix, Forehead Boy?

    posted by tbogg at 4:09 PM



    Ben's mom makes an appearance....

    Conservative teens:

    "I don't understand my teenage son. He's always locked in the bathroom with that damn Ann Coulter book."

    More from the Onion:

    Bush Won't Put Down New Football
    WASHINGTON,DC--According to White House sources, President Bush has not allowed his new Wilson official NFL leather game football to leave his sight since he received it as a gift last week. "The president has that ball with him everywhere he goes," Vice-President Dick Cheney said Monday. "The way he pump-fakes it in the Oval Office is really distracting." Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld has threatened to take the ball away and lock it in his desk if he sees it at the table during another goddamned cabinet meeting

    posted by tbogg at 3:31 PM



    Today's I Don't Like The Drugs But The Drugs Like Me moment.

    I think he's off the wagon:

    "I hate to say this, but if you're going to use a milk jug to relieve yourself while on the road, if you're not even willing to stop to use a urinal on the rest area, and why stop when it's time to get rid of the jug?"

    posted by tbogg at 2:45 PM




    The Purdue story was a fake.

    It was in the San Diego Union today. I should have known better.

    posted by tbogg at 2:19 PM



    If you want me, I'll be in the kitchen making a sandwich for 'Quick Shot' (if you know what I mean)...

    Kim du Toit's better half (she has to be the better half...look at Mr. du Toit) is all blogged out.

    That's a shame. I'm going to miss the car-wreck quality of her writing that always made me shake my head.

    Also, you may note that although the Mrs. announced her retirement on 12/15, the Mr. couldn't be bothered to note it on his own blog probably because she's a chick and everyone knows that womenfolk can't expect to keep up in the testosterone-fueled arena that is blogging, so really, it was, you know, inevitable...

    posted by tbogg at 1:13 PM



    Got my soda...got my popcorn...got my box of Holy Necco Wafers

    The Minor Fall, The Major Lift finds that the Pope is a man of few words, but eloquent ones, when it comes to movies.

    Also, here's some good stuff from Bad Things about Mel Gibson, Director of the Gods.

    posted by tbogg at 12:29 PM



    ...the conservative embrace of Political Correctness.

    Needles on the Beach:

    Thankfully, on the other side, we have true patriots like the pill-popping gasbag Rush Limbaugh bravely defending embattled masculinity against the Feminazi hordes. Defending the hard working White Man against the lazy usurper.

    "Take that bone out of your nose and call me back." The gasbag noted to a black guy who couldn't take a joke about how his kind bloated welfare rolls. Hyuk, hyuk!

    But at some point, people realized that Rush would never be "cool". Or, really, funny.

    That's why the oxymoronic hipster Right has finally come around to the thrill of "South Park Republicans", as if they could co-opt the daring satire of the cartoon just because it makes fun of liberal piousness. Talk about projection. When Cartman lays into crippled retarded kids, say, it's funny because it's outrageous and because ultimately, the joke's on him -- not just on the fact that the kid is retarded and crippled. That's known as satire . It's a way to deflate the perception of power -- and as a result it's a way to defend against those who have it.

    posted by tbogg at 11:47 AM



    It's official.

    Mickey Kaus has finally become unreadable.

    I'm not saying that I can't read him because I disagree with him. And it's not because his "iconoclast schtick" has gotten old. That's old news; it was stale before Arnold came along. What I'm saying is: Kausfiles is a mess.

    Random and indiscriminate bolding, irrelevant asides, incomplete thoughts, "wink wink...you know what I mean" comments, and too many exclamation points. If you have to use that many exclamation points to indicate excitement!!! or important!!! then it's probably lacking in both.

    I'm sure someone will call it the "shape of New Media". I call it Adult ADD.

    posted by tbogg at 11:29 AM



    Alert agents spare Americans from an interview with Olivia Newton John...

    Your Silence Is Appreciated:

    Sue Smethurst enjoys traveling. "It's one of the things about my job that I absolutely love," says the 30-year-old Australian, who works as an associate editor for the women's magazine New Idea. She doesn't even mind flying. "It's one of the great pleasures of the world to be able to turn off your cell phone and be where no one can annoy you."

    But when her Qantas flight from Melbourne, Australia, touched down at LAX around 8 a.m. on Friday, November 14, Smethurst found herself nightmarishly annoyed -- by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). Smethurst was supposed to continue to New York and on Monday interview singer Olivia Newton-John. Smethurst had honeymooned in Manhattan last yearand was looking forward to a long, free weekend "having a good walk through Central Park, getting a decent bowl of chicken soup and going Christmas shopping-- all those gorgeous New York things." Better still, her six-hour layover in L.A. would allow her to have lunch with her American literary agent.

    "I had a room booked at the Airport Hilton, where I was going to my leave bags, shower and get a cup of coffee."

    But first she had to clear LAX's immigration check-in, which she reached after 20 minutes in line. An officer from the DHS's newly minted Customs and Border Protection (CBP) bureau studied the traveler's declaration form Smethurst had filled out on the plane.

    "Oh, you're a journalist," he noted. "What are you here for?"

    "I'm interviewing Olivia Newton-John," Smethurst replied.

    "That's nice," the official said, impressed. "What's the article about?"

    "Breast cancer."

    When Smethurst tells me this, she pauses and adds, "I thought that last question was a little odd, but figured everything's different now in America and it was fine." What she didn't know was that her assignment and travel plans, along with the chicken soup and stroll through Central Park, had been terminated the moment she confirmed she was a journalist. Fourteen hours later, she was escorted by three armed guards onto the 11 p.m. Qantas flight home.

    ...as the professor is fond of saying: go read the whole thing.

    (Thanks to Dave in Texas for the link

    posted by tbogg at 10:33 AM



    We have always been at war with.....

    Jeez. They don't even pretend any more:

    White House officials were steamed when Andrew S. Natsios, the administrator of the U.S. Agency for International Development, said earlier this year that U.S. taxpayers would not have to pay more than $1.7 billion to reconstruct Iraq -- which turned out to be a gross understatement of the tens of billions of dollars the government now expects to spend.

    Recently, however, the government has purged the offending comments by Natsios from the agency's Web site. The transcript, and links to it, have vanished.

    This is not the first time the administration has done some creative editing of government Web sites. After the insurrection in Iraq proved more stubborn than expected, the White House edited the original headline on its Web site of President Bush's May 1 speech, "President Bush Announces Combat Operations in Iraq Have Ended," to insert the word "Major" before combat.


    For a while, the agency left telltale evidence by keeping the link to the transcript on its "What's New" page -- but yesterday the liberal Center for American Progress discovered that this link had disappeared, too, as well as the Google "cached" copies of the original page.

    USAID spokeswoman Lejaune Hall, asked about this curious situation, searched the Web site herself for the missing document. "That is strange," she said. After a brief investigation, she reported back: "They were taken down off the Web site. There was going to be a cost. That's why they're not there."

    But other government Web sites, including the State and Defense departments, routinely post interview transcripts, even from "Nightline." And, it turns out, there is no cost. "We would not charge for that," said ABC News spokesman Jeffrey Schneider. "We would have no trouble with a government agency linking to one of our interviews, and we are unaware of anybody from [ABC] making any request that anything be removed."

    posted by tbogg at 9:12 AM


    Wednesday, December 17, 2003


    "Saddam Hussein... in the parlor...with anthrax."
    "No. Try again"

    WMD sleuth David Kay is calling it a war and going home:

    David Kay, the head of the U.S. effort to find weapons of mass destruction in Iraq, has told administration officials he plans to leave before the Iraq Survey Group's work is completed and could depart before February, U.S. military and intelligence officials said.

    The move comes as more of Kay's staff has been diverted from the weapons hunt to help search for Iraqi insurgents, and at a time when expectations remain low that any weaponry will be discovered.

    Kay requested the change for personal and family reasons, officials said. When he accepted the job in June, they said, he expected to quickly find the expansive evidence that the administration had claimed as its primary reason for going to war. Rather, Kay's preliminary report in October said the group had so far discovered only that Iraq was working to acquire chemical and biological weapons, had missile programs under various stages of development and possessed only a rudimentary nuclear program.

    It appears that Iraq had a notion that they might have an idea which they would then develop into a concept before pitching it to the executives for the greenlight that would allow them to turn it into a project.

    So far, nobody has been attached to direct.

    posted by tbogg at 10:38 PM



    You just can't get good help these days...

    Shorter Dan Drezner:

    According to Bush's supporters, the fish actually rots from the neck down.

    posted by tbogg at 10:30 PM



    We await the retraction, mea culpa, and ritual suicide....

    Breathless Andy on Sunday:

    ABU NIDAL AND MOHAMMED ATTA: Is there a link? The Telegraph claims it has a new document proving it. Money quote:

    "We are uncovering evidence all the time of Saddam's involvement with al-Qaeda," said [Dr Ayad Allawi, a member of Iraq's ruling seven-man Presidential Committee]. "But this is the most compelling piece of evidence that we have found so far. It shows that not only did Saddam have contacts with al-Qaeda, he had contact with those responsible for the September 11 attacks."

    One of the most significant aspects of capturing Saddam will be the removal of fear of his personal reprisal. We could begin to have a breakthrough in intelligence. Who knows what we will eventually find? I predict: evidence that will make this war seem even more justified than ever. Maureen Dowd must be relieved she's on vacation.

    - 4:46:07 PM

    Oops. Nutted by reality:

    A widely publicized Iraqi document that purports to show that September 11 hijacker Mohammed Atta visited Baghdad in the summer of 2001 is probably a fabrication that is contradicted by U.S. law-enforcement records showing Atta was staying at cheap motels and apartments in the United States when the trip presumably would have taken place, according to U.S. law enforcement officials and FBI documents.

    The new document, supposedly written by the chief of the Iraqi intelligence service, was trumpeted by the Sunday Telegraph of London earlier this week in a front-page story that broke hours before the dramatic capture of Saddam Hussein. TERRORIST BEHIND SEPTEMBER 11 STRIKE WAS TRAINED BY SADDAM, ran the headline on the story written by Con Coughlin, a Telegraph correspondent and the author of the book "Saddam: The Secret Life."

    Coughlin's account was picked up by newspapers around the world and was cited the next day by New York Times columnist William Safire. But U.S. officials and a leading Iraqi document expert tell NEWSWEEK that the document is most likely a forgery�part of a thriving new trade in dubious Iraqi documents that has cropped up in the wake of the collapse of Saddam's regime.

    Andrew Sullivan must wish he was on vacation.

    posted by tbogg at 5:38 PM



    On the one hand, it's good to see that the President is evolving again. It's been a long dry spell since that opposable thumb thing

    Julia on our President's ever-changing moods.

    posted by tbogg at 1:38 PM



    Because, you know, he's almost old enough to have been there....

    According to our gal Peggy, the Pope gives Mel Gibson's Lethal Jesus: That's Funny, You Don't Look Savior-ish a hearty five Pope Hats up:

    Pope John Paul II saw the movie the weekend before last, in the Vatican, apparently in his private rooms, on a television, with a DVD, and accompanied by his closest friend, Msgr. Stanislaw Dziwisz. Afterwards and with an eloquent economy John Paul shared with Msgr. Dziwisz his verdict. Dziwisz, the following Monday, shared John Paul's five-word response with the co-producer of The Passion, Steve McEveety.

    This is what the pope said: "It is as it was."

    Now, the only people in the room were the Pope and his buddy Stan and, for all we know they were watching Nuns Gone Wild: Spring Break or playing Halo: Combat Evolved on the Holy Papal XBox, but Peggy is in one of her Rapture states about those, as producer Producer Steve McEveety puts it:

    "Five words. Eleven letters."

    ...as in:

    This is what the pope said: "It is as it was."


    ....Msgr. Dziwisz added that the pope said to him, as the film neared its end, five words that he wished to pass on: "It is as it was."


    I asked the pope's veteran press spokesman, Dr Joaquin Navarro-Valles, if he knew if the pope had said anything beyond "It is as it was." He e-mailed back that he did not know of any further comments.


    "It is as it was."
    I don't know if those words will settle the matter. But for me they do, and for many they will.


    I'm glad the Holy Father chose to see it; I'm glad he has spoken; I'm glad his judgment was, "It is as it was."

    ...and aren't we all glad that he said "It is as it was" as opposed to "Dude. That was awesome" or "I would have never thought of casting Jenna Elfman as the Virgin Mary" or "We are gravely disappointed. We thought we were getting a sneak of The Return of the King.". I mean

    "It is as it was"~Pope JP II

    is going to look so much better at the top of the ads right after Mark Steyn's

    "I laughed, I cried I, got stigmata"...

    posted by tbogg at 1:06 PM



    ...and no poking them with sticks through their cage bars, either...

    Amygdala has a good point:

    So I have to say that the ever-increasing recent trend of many political bloggers -- some from each side of the column as they perceive it, though I'm seeing more from the right guilty of this of late (but that might be sample error on my part) -- to react to any news event they perceive as likely to be politically polarizing by going to a site known to be full of what H. L. Mencken called "the booboisie," mouthing off with sub-simian mewlings admidst the mouth breathings, is not a pretty sight. It would seem to be a masochistic endeavor, but no! It has a purpose! Because then said blogger can pull up this eagerly sought handful of soiled straw and proclaim: this is what The Other Side believes! That Other Side! They're so stupid! Ha ha ha, stupid other side! Me not stupid like them! Me smart. Stupid other side!

    For the record, I only post Free Republic quotes because the people there are just so darn cute that you just want to gather them up in your arms and hold them...while someone breaks into their houses and takes their guns away before they hurt someone.

    posted by tbogg at 11:35 AM



    Even though he beats me, they're punches of love...

    Sully just can't leave that man of his:

    Let's unpack that statement. It gives something to the religious right, who want to bar recognition of any gay relationships in the constitution. But it's all couched in the conditional tense. "We may need a Constitutional Amendment." "If necessary, I will support ..." That's not an endorsement of the FMA now. What would transform the "may's" into "do's"? Dunno. The actual existence of gay civil marriages in Massachusetts? Maybe. Then, he seems to reiterate the Cheney position: "The position of this administration is that whatever legal arrangements people want to make, they're allowed to make, so long as it's embraced by the state or at the state level." Does that mean marriage? Or civil unions? Or domestic partnerships? Or just ad hoc and fragile legal contracts? I don't know. All in all: a carefully tailored piece of obfuscation. It seems to me that, from this statement, we neither have an unconditional endorsement of the FMA nor an uncategorical defense of states' rights with regard to marriage. Bush wants to have it both ways. Or am I misreading this?

    Under normal conditions this would call for an intervention, but I'm kind of enjoying watching Andy play emotional Twister with George W.

    posted by tbogg at 11:26 AM




    One hundred years after the Wright brothers’ first flight, an attempt to re-create the moment failed Wednesday when a replica craft couldn’t get off the ground and sputtered into the mud.

    The muslin-winged flyer dropped off the end of a wooden track and stopped dead in a muddy puddle. Pilot Kevin Kochersberger dropped his head in apparent chagrin and later laughed as the plane was hoisted back on the track.

    posted by tbogg at 11:14 AM



    Jesse was a Republican...he also used to write letters to Penthouse Forum

    Jesse is sad because the party left him...

    posted by tbogg at 11:08 AM



    Something that I learned to day....

    I can call the Bush twins drunken sluts, call the Administration thieves, liars, warmongers, insane, corrupt, evil, I can call Joe Lieberman a rat-faced homunculus, call Ben Shapiro a virgin (well, he is), call Peggy Noonan a leg-humping daddy-fixated lunatic, call Ann Coulter by names that haven't even been created yet, call the President 'unelectable'....

    ...and nobody seems to mind. But write a few snotty things about White Stripes....


    posted by tbogg at 11:00 AM


    Tuesday, December 16, 2003


    Right idea, wrong bands

    Remember all the hype about White Stripes and the Strokes? Next big thing, blah, blah, blah?

    They should have been talking about Jet.

    All the music, but without the smug fakey attitude.

    Are You Gonna Be My Girl is the single of the year.

    posted by tbogg at 3:11 PM



    The Babe and the Bum

    The Republican Babe of the Week is:

    Elisabeth Hasselbeck

    Elisabeth Hasselbeck, formerly Elisabeth Filarski, is best known to audiences as a participant on the wildly popular second edition of the Survivor game show, Survivor: the Australian Outback. While competing in Australia, Ms. Hasselbeck used her competitive personality and survival skills to outwit and outlast her way to the final four.

    A 1999 graduate from Boston College, Ms. Hasselbeck is married to NFL quarterback Tim Hasselbeck. While at Boston College, she captained her championship D-1 softball team, as her studies centered on her studio art major.

    Wow! Married to "NFL Quarterback Tim Hasselbeck"? This Tim Hasselbeck?

    Tim Hasselbeck was greeted with a warm hug from coach Steve Spurrier's wife near the front desk at Redskins Park on Monday.

    Such comfort was needed a day after he posted the ultimate quarterback goose egg.

    "I'm going to play better next week," Hasselbeck said. "I'm telling you that right now."

    That's hardly an audacious guarantee. Hasselbeck has nowhere to go but up after his 0.0 quarterback rating in Washington's 27-0 loss to the Dallas Cowboys on Sunday.

    "I'll be disappointed for a long time about it," Hasselbeck said. "But at the same time I need to forget about it."

    Hasselbeck went 6-of-26 for 56 yards with four interceptions. Perhaps out of sheer mercy, the NFL's complex quarterback rating formula automatically bottoms out at 0.0 when the performance gets bad enough. If not, Hasselbeck would have been in the negatives.

    Someday he'll be able to tell his kids how he created the equivalent of the Mendoza Line for the NFL...right before he goes to his day job at Hardees.

    posted by tbogg at 1:45 PM



    Get a job!

    Shorter Bruce Bartlett:

    Unemployment is caused by unemployment benefits and, furthermore, the extension of benefits might endanger another man's job.

    posted by tbogg at 1:29 PM



    The Very Small Tent of Orson Scott Card

    Science-fiction writer Orson Scott Card, a self-proclaimed Democrat is darn worried about his party:

    In one of Patrick O'Brian's novels about the British navy during the Napoleonic wars, he dismisses a particularly foolish politician by saying that his political platform was "death to the Whigs." Watching the primary campaigns among this year's pathetic crop of Democratic candidates, I can't help but think that their campaigns would be vastly improved if they would only rise to the level of "Death to the Republicans."

    Instead, their platforms range from Howard Dean's "Bush is the devil" to everybody else's "I'll make you rich, and Bush is quite similar to the devil." Since President Bush is quite plainly not the devil, one wonders why anyone in the Democratic Party thinks this ploy will play with the general public.

    There are Democrats, like me, who think it will not play, and should not play, and who are waiting in the wings until after the coming electoral debacle in order to try to remake the party into something more resembling America.

    I dunno. I think trying to reshape the Democratic party into the Communitarian Mormon Militarist Homophobe party is gonna be a lot of work. But the good news is that they'll all be able to sit at one table at Dennys when they have their convention.

    posted by tbogg at 12:15 PM



    Okay. We'll agree to leave in the information about his drug abuse, but we'll redact any mention of his man-boob reduction surgery...

    Rush Limbaugh, (chubby guy, plays golf, recreational drug abuser. That guy...) who makes a living nitpicking other people's lives, doesn't want his life exposed to the cold hard light of reality that comes each morning following an Oxycontin & Zima-fueled binge that has the neighbors calling the police at three in the morning because you're playing your Bachman-Turner Overdrive CD's too damn loud, if you know what I mean.

    Embattled radio talk show host Rush Limbaugh is asking a Palm Beach County, Florida, court to keep his medical records sealed from prosecutors investigating whether he illegally purchased prescription painkillers.


    In his court pleading Tuesday, Limbaugh's lawyers argued that Limbaugh's doctor/patient confidentiality should be protected.

    "No citizen would wish these highly personal details to be held by minions of the state to finger through at their leisure. Nor would any sane person wish his medical diagnosis and medical prescriptions to be widely published on television shows, tabloid newspapers, Web sites and the like," Limbaugh's court motion states.

    Limbaugh's court pleading says he has "already suffered the indignity of watching a list of his doctors and medications dramatically leafed through on air by television reporters."

    We can only speculate what diseases, infirmities, maladies, and afflictions Rush may be suffering from.

    But now is not the time. That would be unfair to Rush.

    Totally unfair.

    To Rush.

    posted by tbogg at 11:38 AM



    Meanwhile, over at the State Department, the search continues....

    Now that we have found Saddam (but not that other guy...um...you know, tall guy, beard, killed three thousand Americans. That guy..) searchers have moved on to the State Department where they are searching for a coherent international policy, as well as any indication that the Department has had any recent communication with a shadowy entity known as "The White House".

    Additionally searchers have all but given up hope of finding Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage's neck as well as Secretary of State Colin Powell's balls which were reported missing in early 2001. Following a recent surgical procedure, doctors at Walter Reed Army Medical Centre in Washington were again stymied in their attempt to locate the whereabouts of the missing orbs, which were last seen in Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld's desk in the second drawer on the right, next to a Payday bar, a half-full bottle of Hai Karate aftershave, and a small caliber handgun with one bullet in the chamber.

    posted by tbogg at 11:18 AM



    54...10...civilian...insurgents...whatever. You guys and your big all-important "facts"...

    I still find this amusing when this pops up:

    Samarra, a volatile town in the so-called Sunni Triangle north and west of Baghdad, was the scene of clashes between U.S. troops and insurgents last month. U.S. commanders initially claimed to have killed 54 guerrillas in that clash, but local residents and police reported that less than 10 people — most of them civilians — died in the firefight.

    Don't you think AP should, you know, send a reporter out to find out whose story is true? Maybe get an accurate number. I hear that Nedra Pickler is available.

    Meanwhile support for the occupation among Iraqis is up a hundred bazillion percent.

    posted by tbogg at 10:39 AM



    Last night...

    Rancid...was very good. But Tim Armstrong sometimes looks like he's making a cameo appearance with his own band. Nonetheless, after twelve years they can still turn a concert hall into a steam bath.

    Tiger Army...I'd never heard of this psychobilly trio but they were very talented and strong. And it's nice to see a band that has accepted the idea that intelligent song writing, a big hook, and good harmonies aren't necessarily a bad thing.

    F-minus....having tattoos is not a talent. All attitude, no discernable future

    ...and isn't it amazing how every band has a website these days no matter how much they suck.


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