BMEWS
 
Sarah Palin is the reason compasses point North.

calendar   Wednesday - November 21, 2007

Man Rapes Sleepwalking Woman

MSNBC

Man charged with raping sleepwalking woman
Homeless, HIV-positive man, 52, allegedly attacked student near highway

CINCINNATI - A homeless man was indicted Tuesday on charges that he raped a college student while she was sleepwalking along a highway near her home.

The woman, a 23-year-old University of Cincinnati student, woke up during the attack and fought back but could not get away, said Hamilton County prosecutor Seth Tieger.

Dexter Ford, 52, was also charged with felonious assault because he knew he was HIV-positive, Tieger told The Cincinnati Enquirer. Police said Ford told them that he is HIV positive, and Hamilton County Municipal Judge Fanon Rucker ordered Ford to be tested for venereal diseases. It wasn’t clear if the woman has been tested.

Wow.  I’m not that familiar with the phenomenon of sleepwalking, but holy cow.  To wake up and find yourself walking down the road would be one thing, but to wake up finding yourself out in the road being raped by a homeless guy is another kettle of fish altogether.

Strange.


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 11/21/2007 at 08:30 AM   
Filed Under: • News-BriefsOdd-Strange •  
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Fred on Heller

Fred speaks out about the Supreme Court taking on the Heller case.

I’ve always understood the Second Amendment to mean what it says – it guarantees a citizen the right to “keep and bear” firearms, and that’s why I’ve been supportive of the National Rifle Association’s efforts to have the DC law overturned.

In general, lawful gun ownership is a pretty simple matter. The Founders established gun-owner rights so that citizens would possess and be able to exercise the universal right of self-defense. Guns enable their owners to protect themselves from robbery and assault more successfully and more safely than they otherwise would be able to. The danger of laws like the D.C. handgun ban is that they limit the availability of legal guns to people who want to use them for legitimate reasons, such as self-defense (let alone hunting, sport shooting, collecting), while doing nothing to prevent criminals from acquiring guns.

The D.C. handgun ban, like all handgun bans is necessarily ineffectual. It takes the guns that would be used for self protection out of the hands of law-abiding citizens, while doing practically nothing to prevent criminals from obtaining guns to use to commit crimes. Even the federal judges in the D.C. case knew about the flourishing black market for guns in our nation’s capital that leaves the criminals armed and the law-abiding defenseless. This is unacceptable.

The Second Amendment does more than guarantee to all Americans an unalienable right to defend one’s self. William Blackstone, the 18th century English legal commentator whose works were well-read and relied on by the Framers of our Constitution, observed that the right to keep and bear firearms arises from “the natural right of resistance and self-preservation.” This view, reflected in the Second Amendment, promotes both self-defense and liberty. It is not surprising then that the generation that had thrown off the yoke of British tyranny less than a decade earlier included the Second Amendment in the Constitution and meant for it to enable the people to protect themselves and their liberties.

You can’t always predict what the Supreme Court will do, but in the case of Heller and Washington, DC’s gun ban, officials in the District of Columbia would have been better off expending their efforts and resources in pursuit of those who commit crimes against innocent people rather than in seeking to keep guns out of the hands of law-abiding citizens who would use them only to protect themselves and their families. And that is why appointing judges who apply the text of the Constitution and not their own policy preferences is so important.


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 11/21/2007 at 08:24 AM   
Filed Under: • Republicans •  
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calendar   Tuesday - November 20, 2007

teacher strips off in classroom

News Flash! ( I just couldn’t resist that one) Substitute teacher gets naked from the waist down in front of 4th grade class!

Looks like a case of Show ‘N Tell gone horribly wrong!

Substitute Teacher Undresses in Front of Class
Macon, GA (WMAZ) - A substitute teacher was kicked out of a Macon area school Wednesday morning for partially undressing in front of students.

The teacher undressed in a fourth-grade classroom. Assistant school superintendent Sylvia McGee said the woman disrobed below the waist.

The principal, Dr. Ramon Johnson, says the substitute teacher was non-responsive to direct questions and was removed immediately from the campus.

In a letter sent home to parents, Johnson wrote, during the incident, the school was placed in a code-red lockdown.

Students and teachers were required to go to the nearest room, lock the doors, and cover the windows.

In the letter, Johnson assured parents that the woman will never substitute in any Bibb County School again. He also said it’s possible the incident may have been caused a medical problem.

A crisis team is available to help students who were in the class during the incident.

Assistant school superintendent Sylvia McGee said, “We think it was an isolated incident, and the school and the staff acted very quickly to deal with it. The school did an exemplary job in dealing with this unforeseen circumstance.”




She gets naked, and the school goes into lockdown and the kids who caught a look get psychological counselling. And you thought you had body image issues???



The story gets uncovered elsewhere too

Substitute teacher disrobes in front of fourth-grade class
By Julie Hubbard - Telegraph staff writer

A substitute teacher who worked her first day Wednesday at Bruce Elementary School took off all her clothes from the waist down in front of a class of fourth-graders, according to school officials.

“They noticed she started to disrobe,” said Bibb County schools assistant superintendent Sylvia McGee. “From her waist down, she was totally nude.”

McGee said the substitute, whose name was not released, may have been on medication at the time. After students went to another classroom to tell another teacher, the substitute was found in the classroom “nonresponsive.”

Since October, the substitute had been on an approved list to teach and had been screened in a background check, McGee said.

As of this week she has been pulled from the substitute list.

Bruce said students were sent home with letters Wednesday explaining the incident, and a school psychologist talked to the class of 20 students, McGee said.

“We think it’s best she not return to substitute in the district,” she said.

What a helluva way to act on your first day at work.

batbatbatbatbatbatbatbat


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 11/20/2007 at 04:24 PM   
Filed Under: • Miscellaneous •  
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Heller is a go!

SCOTUS decides to hear DC v. Heller. Hold your breath, cross your fingers and pray!

Via al-reuters

US court to review Washington, D.C., handgun ban
WASHINGTON, Nov 20 (Reuters) - The U.S. Supreme Court said on Tuesday it would decide whether handguns can be banned in the nation’s capital, a case that could produce its first ruling in nearly 70 years on the right of Americans to bear arms.

The nation’s highest court agreed to hear an appeal by officials from the District of Columbia government arguing that the city’s 31-year-old law banning private possession of handguns should be upheld as constitutional.

The justices said they would review a precedent-setting ruling by a U.S. appeals court that broadly interpreted an individual’s constitutional right under the Second Amendment to bear arms and struck down the city’s law for violating those rights.

Via Fox News, who puts up the AP story:

Supreme Court Will Decide Challenge to District of Columbia Handgun Ban

WASHINGTON — The Supreme Court said Tuesday it will decide whether the District of Columbia can ban handguns, a case that could produce the most in-depth examination of the constitutional right to “keep and bear arms” in nearly 70 years.

The justices’ decision to hear the case could make the divisive debate over guns an issue in the 2008 presidential and congressional elections.

The government of Washington, D.C., is asking the court to uphold its 31-year ban on handgun ownership in the face of a federal appeals court ruling that struck down the ban as incompatible with the Second Amendment. Tuesday’s announcement was widely expected, especially after both the District and the man who challenged the handgun ban asked for the high court review.

The main issue before the justices is whether the Second Amendment of the Constitution protects an individual’s right to own guns or instead merely sets forth the collective right of states to maintain militias. The former interpretation would permit fewer restrictions on gun ownership.

Gun-control advocates say the Second amendment was intended to insure that states could maintain militias, a response to 18th century fears of an all-powerful national government. Gun rights proponents contend the amendment gives individuals the right to keep guns for private uses, including self-defense.

Alan Gura, a lawyer for the D.C. residents who challenged the ban, said he was pleased that the justices were considering the case.

“We believe the Supreme Court will acknowledge that, while the use of guns can be regulated, a complete prohibition on all functional firearms is too extreme,” Gura said. “It’s time to end this unconstitutional disaster. It’s time to restore a basic freedom to all Washington residents.”

Paul Helmke, president of the Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence, said the Supreme Court should “reverse a clearly erroneous decision and make it clear that the Constitution does not prevent communities from having the gun laws they believe are needed to protect public safety.”

The last Supreme Court ruling on the topic came in 1939 in U.S. v. Miller, which involved a sawed-off shotgun. That decision supported the collective rights view, but did not squarely answer the question in the view of many constitutional scholars. Chief Justice John Roberts said at his confirmation hearing that the correct reading of the Second Amendment was “still very much an open issue.”

The Second Amendment reads: “A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.”

Washington banned handguns in 1976, saying it was designed to reduce violent crime in the nation’s capital.

The City Council that adopted the ban said it was justified because “handguns have no legitimate use in the purely urban environment of the District of Columbia.”

The District is making several arguments in defense of the restriction, including claiming that the Second Amendment involves militia service. It also said the ban is constitutional because it limits the choice of firearms, but does not prohibit residents from owning any guns at all. Rifles and shotguns are legal, if kept under lock or disassembled. Businesses may have guns for protection.

Chicago has a similar handgun ban, but few other gun-control laws are as strict as the District’s.

Four states — Hawaii, Illinois, Maryland and New York — urged the Supreme Court to take the case because broad application of the appeals court ruling would threaten “all federal and state laws restricting access to firearms.”

Dick Anthony Heller, an armed security guard, sued the District after it rejected his application to keep a handgun at home for protection.

The laws in question in the case do not “merely regulate the possession of firearms,” Heller said. Instead, they “amount to a complete prohibition of the possession of all functional firearms within the home.”

If the Second Amendment gives individuals the right to have guns, “the laws must yield,” he said.

Opponents say the ban plainly has not worked because guns still are readily available, through legal and illegal means. Although the city’s homicide rate has declined dramatically since peaking in the early 1990s, Washington still ranks among the nation’s highest murder cities, with 169 killings in 2006.

The U.S. Court Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit ruled 2-1 for Heller in March. Judge Laurence Silberman said reasonable regulations still could be permitted, but said the ban went too far.

The Bush administration, which has endorsed individual gun-ownership rights, has yet to weigh in on this case.

Arguments will be heard early next year.

The case is District of Columbia v. Heller, 07-290.

Via CNN

Supreme Court to rule on gun ownership rights
WASHINGTON (CNN)—The U.S. Supreme Court agreed Tuesday to decide whether the District of Columbia’s sweeping ban on handgun ownership violates the Constitution’s fundamental right to “keep and bear arms.” The justices accepted the case for review, with oral arguments likely next February or March. A ruling could come by late June, smack in the middle of the 2008 presidential election campaign.

At issue is one that has polarized judges and politicians for decades: Do the Second Amendment’s 27 words bestow gun ownership as an individual right, or do they bestow a collective one—aimed at the civic responsibilities of state militias—making it therefore subject to strict government regulation.  City leaders had urged the high court to intervene, saying refusal to do so could prove dire.

“The District of Columbia—a densely populated urban locality where the violence caused by handguns is well documented—will be unable to enforce a law that its elected officials have sensibly concluded saves lives,” wrote attorneys for the city.

Washington Mayor Adrian Fenty and other officials held a public rally in September, with the message that more handguns will only mean more serious crime.

“I see the results of gun violence every day,” said Washington Police Chief Cathy Lanier. “The weakening of the district’s gun law will inevitably lead to an increase in injury, and worse, death.” A federal appeals court in March ruled the handgun ban to be unconstitutional as well as a provision that rifles and shotguns—which are legal to own in the city—be kept in the home unloaded and fitted with trigger locks or disassembled. The rifle regulations are not at issue before the Supreme Court.

The city’s 31-year-old law has prevented most private citizens from owning and keeping handguns in their homes.

Only Chicago, Illinois, and and Washington among major U.S. cities have such sweeping handgun bans. Courts have generally upheld bans in other cities of semiautomatic weapons and sawed-off shotguns.

Several Washingtonians first challenged the law, some saying they wanted to do something about being constant victims of crime.

“I want for myself the right to protect my home and my family in the event of a violent attack,” plaintiff George Lyon said in March after winning a lower court victory. “The District of Columbia is not what I call the safest jurisdiction in the world.”

The city reported 137 gun-related murders last year.

The March ruling that overturned the ban was the first time a federal appeals court had found a gun law unconstitutional on Second Amendment grounds.

The amendment states, “A well-regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.”

The Supreme Court generally has steered clear of settling the individual versus collective dispute, and it last examined the issue in 1939 without fully resolving the broader conditional questions.

The conservative majority has been supportive of local jurisdictions crafting gun-control laws. But the high court in 2003 refused to accept an appeal challenging California’s ban on assault rifles.

Similar weapon control laws in other cities also could be in jeopardy, and Maryland, Massachusetts, Chicago and San Francisco, California, have filed briefs supporting Washington.

The National Rifle Association and other groups support the gun owners, but both sides have privately expressed concern over how the justices will decide the issue, because the legal and political implications could be sweeping in scope.

Recent polling finds gun control remains an important political issue with voters. An NRA convention in September attracted seven Republican presidential candidates.

In June, the Democratic-controlled House of Representatives passed legislation to strengthen the national system that checks backgrounds of gun buyers. It followed the April shooting at Virginia Tech in which a gunman killed 32 students and faculty on campus.

Legal experts said that given the unanswered constitutional questions, it was little surprise the justices decided to tackle the case.

“This issue is so monumental and so sweeping, and such a change from prior rulings on gun control that it was basically on a freight train to the U.S. Supreme Court for the justices to finally decide,” said Thomas Goldstein, an appellate lawyer and founder of the popular scotusblog.com Web site.

A separate petition by five city residents asked to be included in the case. A federal court earlier had rejected that appeal on standing grounds.

Cybercast News Service chimes in too:

Supreme Court Agrees to Hear Challenge to DC Gun Ban
By Randy Hall
CNSNews.com Staff Writer/Editor
November 20, 2007

(CNSNews.com) - The U.S. Supreme Court announced on Tuesday that it will decide whether the ban on owning guns in the District of Columbia is constitutional, a pivotal case that could determine if the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution protects the right to own firearms.

At issue is a 31-year-old Washington, D.C., law banning handguns and requiring that all shotguns and rifles be kept unloaded and either trigger-locked or disassembled at all times. There is no exception for self-defense.

“The Bill of Rights does not end at the District of Columbia’s borders, and it includes the right to keep and bear arms,” said Alan Gura, lead counsel for the plaintiffs in Heller v. District of Columbia.

“After three decades of failure trying to control firearms in the District, it’s time for law-abiding city residents to be able to defend themselves in their homes,” Gura added. “We are confident the Supreme Court will vindicate that right in Washington, D.C., and across the nation.”

Dick Heller, a District resident who works as an armed security guard during the day but is forbidden by District law from keeping a handgun at home to protect himself, explained: “I want to be able to defend myself and my wife from violent criminals, and the Constitution says I have a right to do that by keeping a gun in my home.”

“The police can’t be everywhere, and they can’t protect everyone all the time,” he said. “Responsible gun ownership is a basic right we have as American citizens.”

The Supreme Court has not heard a Second Amendment case since 1939, when it issued a confusing and inconclusive decision in a case involving the interstate transportation of a sawed-off shotgun.

However, the case ended before the defendant had the opportunity to establish whether sawed-off shotguns are covered by the word “arms” in the text of the Amendment. Regular shotguns, along with rifles and handguns, are precisely the kind of “arms” the framers had in mind in drafting the Second Amendment, the plaintiffs argue.

The District’s functional firearms ban defies the framers’ obvious intent to ensure that the government could never disarm citizens in America, as other governments have done elsewhere.

Clark Neily, a public interest lawyer specializing in constitutional law cases and co-counsel to the Heller plaintiffs said, “The Second Amendment is every bit as much a part of the Bill of Rights as freedom of speech, freedom of the press and freedom of religion.”

“The framers of our Constitution made clear that the government has no more business disarming citizens than it has censoring them or telling them what values to hold sacred,” Neily said.

“The citizens of Washington, D.C. - indeed, all Americans - deserve a clear pronouncement from the nation’s highest court on the real meaning of the Second Amendment,” said Robert Levy, a senior fellow in constitutional studies at the Cato Institute and co-counsel to the Heller plaintiffs.

“Later cases will decide what gun regulations are constitutional, but an outright ban on all functional firearms clearly is not constitutional,” Levy said.

Heller promises to be among the most closely watched constitutional law cases in decades. At stake is not just the question of whether people have a constitutional right to own guns, but also the court’s willingness to stand up for rights that are expressed in the Constitution, even when those rights are strongly opposed by a vocal minority.

‘Exciting

Tuesday’s announcement sparked comment from Paul Helmke, president of the Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence, who stated in a news release that “the Supreme Court’s decision in this case will be extremely significant - the most important decision on guns in nearly 70 years and maybe the most important ever regarding the Second Amendment.”

He disagreed with the appeals court ruling last March in the Parker v. Heller case, which led to the gun ban being overturned.

“By agreeing to hear the appeal by the District of Columbia in the Parker/Heller case, the U.S. Supreme Court has the chance to reverse a clearly erroneous decision and make it clear that the Constitution does not prevent communities from having the gun laws they believe are needed to protect public safety,” Helmke said.

The decision in the Parker case “ignored longstanding Supreme Court precedent, discounted the express language of the Second Amendment and substituted its policy preferences for those of the District’s elected representatives,” he added. “We are hopeful that the Supreme Court will reverse this flawed ruling.”

Also on Tuesday, Second Amendment Foundation founder Alan Gottlieb said in a release of his own that he is “excited” about the Supreme Court’s announcement.

“An affirmative ruling by the Supreme Court will probably not be the death knell for the extremist citizen disarmament movement,” Gottlieb said, “but it will properly cripple their campaign to destroy an important civil right, the one that protects all of our other rights.”

“The insidious effort to strip American citizens of their firearms rights, while at the same time permanently harming public safety, must end,” he added.

“The Washington, D.C., gun ban has been a monumental failure, and the crime statistics prove that,” Gottlieb said. “For almost 70 years, gun banners have deliberately misinterpreted and misrepresented the high court’s language in the U.S. v Miller ruling in 1939.

“It is long past the time that this important issue be put to rest, and the Heller case will provide the court with that opportunity,” he added.

As Cybercast News Service previously reported, the legal strategy behind the case has been under consideration for at least five years, and the U.S. House of Representatives voted to overturn the D.C. gun ban in 2004 and again in 2005.

Then, last March, the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia overturned the ban, giving gun rights advocates a major victory in their long battle over the restrictions.

The ruling drew strong reaction from both sides of the gun control issue. One group called the decision “‘judicial activism’ at its absolute worst” and another hailed it as “a tremendous victory for the common man.”

Soon afterwards, lawyers involved in the case said that attempts by “well-meaning members of Congress” to repeal the ban could backfire by keeping the issue out of the U.S. Supreme Court.

Oral arguments will most likely be scheduled for March, with a decision expected by June 2008.


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 11/20/2007 at 02:52 PM   
Filed Under: • Miscellaneous •  
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Global Warming Update

Courtesy of my dear brother, I learn that a learned paper has been published by the National Counsil for Air and Stream Improvement, Inc (NCASI) looking at a 2,000 year trend in temperatures.

Abstract:
Historical data provide a baseline for judging how anomalous recent temperature changes are and for assessing the degree to which organisms are likely to be adversely affected by current or future warming. Climate histories are commonly reconstructed from a variety of sources, including ice cores, tree rings, and sediment. Tree-ring data, being the most abundant for recent centuries, tend to dominate reconstructions. There are reasons to believe that tree ring data may not properly capture long-term climate changes. In this study, eighteen 2000-year-long series were obtained that were not based on tree ring data. Data in each series were smoothed with a 30-year running mean. All data were then converted to anomalies by subtracting the mean of each series from that series. The overall mean series was then computed by simple averaging. The mean time series shows quite coherent structure. The mean series shows the Medieval Warm Period (MWP) and Little Ice Age (LIA) quite clearly, with the MWP being approximately 0.3°C warmer than 20th century values at these eighteen sites.

They have a lovely graph showing how this all panned out.

image

Notice that it was actually warmer 1,000 years ago?  And we are now in a cooling period?

And that, my friends, is why its now referred to as “Climate Change” and not “Global Warming” by the darling media.

**Update**
I almost forgot...I’m really digging this global warming by the way.  Today is 65 degrees and tomorrow is supposed to be 75!  In November!  In the Shenandoah Valley!

I’ll take this every year.


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 11/20/2007 at 01:55 PM   
Filed Under: • Climate-Weather •  
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Just in Time for Christmas

As you know, running a site like this takes a little bit of funding.  You have no doubt noticed that I’ve added some ad services to the side bar and the comments page.  Whenever you click them, we receive a few pennies that help keep us on the air. 

We will be having some bills for hosting and such come up in the spring, and since the ads generate about $5 per month, I thought I’d better find some other sources (other than outright begging, of course smile ) so that I’ll have some of the cash needed when the expenses arise. 

What better way to show your support of beating down moonbats than to wear it around town?  What better gift for your tree-hugging, Birkenstock-wearing, patchouli-eating office mate than a BMEWS coffee mug? 

So, if you’d like to sport some new BMEWS outerwear, or drink your morning brew from a bat-cup, click here or the link on the sidebar and buy some Christmas goodies.

If there are other items you’d like to see added, just let me know and I’ll see what I can do to get it posted.

Thanks for making this the best right-sided community on the intarwebs!


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 11/20/2007 at 11:09 AM   
Filed Under: • Blog Stuff •  
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Less Guns, More Shooting

One for the “Duh” file.  From John Hawkins we see a report from the Boston Globe that wonders why the ban on guns in the nation’s capital has not had the swimming success it was purported to have.

Effectiveness of D.C. gun ban still a mystery

WASHINGTON - Three decades ago, at the dawn of municipal self-government in the District of Columbia, the city’s first elected mayor and council enacted one of the country’s toughest gun-control measures, a ban on handgun ownership that opponents have long said violates the Second Amendment.

All these years later, with the constitutionality of the ban now probably headed for a US Supreme Court review, a much-debated practical question remains unsettled: Has a law aimed at reducing the number of handguns in the District made city streets safer?

Bzzzzzzzt.  Yes, someone in the audience wants to answer this one.  Go ahead young lady.

NO!

Correct!  100 points for you.

Over the years, gun violence has continued to plague the city, reaching staggering levels at times.

But, But, But.....how can that be?????  There is a ban on guns.  No one is allowed to have them.  Surely everyone listens to and follows the law, right?  RIGHT?

In making by far their boldest public policy decision, Washington’s first elected officials wanted other jurisdictions, especially neighboring states, to follow the lead of the nation’s capital by enacting similar gun restrictions, cutting the flow of firearms into the city from surrounding areas.

“We were trying to send out a message,” recalled Sterling Tucker, the council chairman at the time.

We’re such a collosal failure, we thought we’d like some company in the effort.

“It’s a pretty common-sense idea that the more guns there are around, the more gun violence you’ll have,” D.C. Attorney General Linda Singer said.

Maybe to someone who lives in FantasyLand it does, but not to those of use who actually live in the real world.  You know, the world where there are actual bad people who don’t follow your laws and are intent on taking stuff and killing people?

Dolts.


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 11/20/2007 at 09:34 AM   
Filed Under: • CrimeDemocrats-Liberals-Moonbat LeftistsPhilosophyPolitics •  
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“What else are we supposed to do?”

From yesterday’s NYT we learn that no matter what, they will oppose anything President Bush says...even when they know it will fail.

WASHINGTON, Nov. 18 — Democrats in Congress failed once again Friday to shift President Bush’s war strategy in Iraq, but insisted that they would not let up. Their explanation for their latest foiled effort seemed to boil down to a simple question: “What else are we supposed to do?”

Frustrated by the lack of political progress in Iraq, under pressure by antiwar groups and mindful of polls showing that most Americans want the war to end, the Democrats last week put forward a $50 billion war spending bill with strings attached knowing it would fail.

Like so many of the war-related measures that Democrats have proposed this year, the spending bill sought to set a timeline for redeploying American troops, and to narrow the mission to focus on counterterrorism and on the training of Iraq’s security forces.

And, like so many of the war-related measures that Democrats proposed this year, it was approved in the House only to wither and die in the Senate, where on Friday it fell 7 votes short of the 60 needed to prevent a Republican filibuster — with 45 senators voting to block the measure.

All signs indicate that Democrats will continue proposing such measures as long as Mr. Bush remains in office and troops remain in Iraq. “We are going to keep plugging away,” said Senator Carl Levin of Michigan, chairman of the Armed Services Committee.

Democratic lawmakers and strategists on Capitol Hill said their hope was that even if Republican support for Mr. Bush’s strategy held firm, voters would reward Democrats for their efforts at the polls next November, and that there was no risk to failing again and again.

And that, my friends, is the crux of the issue.  Getting political power is ALL THAT MATTERS.  No worries about the troops, or the Iraqies, or the world.  Damn them all as long as we think it will help us get elected. 

You want proof?  Sure, read this story at the DoD and find out what is expected to happen when funding runs out.

WASHINGTON, Nov. 19, 2007 – If Congress does not come through with a supplemental bill President Bush will sign, money for defeating the largest killers of American personnel in the war on terror will run out Dec. 1, a senior official said here today.

Retired Army Gen. Montgomery C. Meigs, director of the Joint Improvised Explosive Device Defeat Organization, told Pentagon reporters that the organization will have to stop funding new initiatives and just maintain operations.

We’re out of (funding) new stuff now; we’re going to have trouble sustaining current contracts after the first of December, Meigs said.

The anti-IED organization needs the funding to sustain operations and to pay for equipment fielded but not yet turned over to the services for funding, Meigs said. For example, he said, his organization funds the Guardian man-portable jammer, the contractors to service it, and the training in the system.

So they won’t be able to fund anti-IED programs, but screw that, we need to get some help getting re-elected from the nutroots.


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 11/20/2007 at 09:24 AM   
Filed Under: • Democrats-Liberals-Moonbat LeftistsPolitics •  
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Whew!

Phase I of my project is now complete, with great success, but I feel totally out of the loop with respect to current events and happenings.  I think there are about 3,000 unread items in my newsreader now.  I may have to just mark it all “read” and start fresh, loosing a couple of weeks of history in my memory.

Thanks to Peiper, Drew, Chief, Infinity, Christopher & Severa for keeping things going in my absense.  You are the best.

Now, to figure out what I’ve missed........


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 11/20/2007 at 06:39 AM   
Filed Under: • Blog Stuff •  
Comments (1) Trackbacks(0)  Permalink •  

U.S. lawmakers urge Google-DoubleClick deal scrutiny


Two U.S. senators on the antitrust subcommittee urged the Federal Trade Commission’s chairman to submit Google’s purchase of advertising company DoubleClick to “serious scrutiny.”

In a letter to the FTC (PDF), Sens. Herb Kohl (D-Wis.) and Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) argued that Google has a dominant position in a form of Internet advertising called contextual ads while DoubleClick is a market leader in display advertising.

They said industry experts believe the deal could harm competition on the Web.

“While we have not reached any definitive conclusion regarding this issue, we urge that you only approve the merger if you determine that it will not cause any substantial lessening of competition with respect to Internet advertising,” they wrote.

Kohl and Hatch also raised questions about privacy implications because both Google and DoubleClick collect information about Web usage.

“We believe that this deal raises fundamental consumer privacy concerns worthy of serious scrutiny,” the letter said.

FTC spokeswoman Nancy Judy said Chairman Deborah Majoras had received the letter but that it would inappropriate for her to comment on it.

Google said in a statement it had already discussed the privacy and market share questions with the FTC.

“We remain confident that the FTC will conclude that this deal is good for consumers, advertisers, and Web site publishers,” Google said.

http://tinyurl.com/3bz4p8


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Posted by Drew458   United Kingdom  on 11/20/2007 at 05:16 AM   
Filed Under: • Personal •  
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calendar   Monday - November 19, 2007

Almost missed it. It’s still National Ammo Day

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Phew, I almost forgot to post about NAD. (It’s still the 19th for another hour and seven minutes here). The neat part about National Ammo Day is that it lasts all week! So high thee hence and stock up. And for you reloading junkies, like myself, go get a pound of smokeless and a case of primers, then pull that handle until your arm hurts. grin

On the other hand, I’m probably preaching to the choir on this one. My guess is that most of you already knew about it from Kim’s place, where NAD was invented and has been going on for 6 years. It truly is a grassroots effort that gets bigger every year. Finally this year it’s starting to get some real traction, with mentions at Instapundit and a few other heavy duty blogs, as well as a vendor or two jumping on the bandwagon. It actually made the newspaper in Seattle, of all places. This is in addition to being mentioned on just about every gunnie blog and forum.

And get this - the Seattle Post-Intelligencer (love the name) says NAD has the support of the Second Ammendment Foundation, very cool, even if I’ve never heard of them. Hey, any place with “Foundation” in their name must be serious, right? Seattle PI even approached BATFE for their take on the event ... naturally the feds had no official position. ROFLMBAO!

Hey, maybe next year the NRA or the GAO will give it their blessing. Yeah right.

Ok, that’s about all I have for today, unless you want to get into that Thanksgiving frame of mind and take one of those wonderful internet Turkey Trivia Quizes!


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 11/19/2007 at 10:52 PM   
Filed Under: • Miscellaneous •  
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calendar   Sunday - November 18, 2007

The other, other front in the GWoT

This might give you something to think about.

Via SondraK and The Dissident Frogrman; excerpted from The Sultan Knish. Love that blogname!

The Arab Invasion of South America
When students protesting Hugo Chavez’s plan to make himself into a dictator for life protested in Caracas chanting “Freedom”, the riot police that smashed through their ranks were under the supervision of Deputy Justice Minister Tarik or Tareck El-Aissami.

In his early thirties Tarik El-Assimi is one of the younger men to have held such a post. His father Carlos el-Aissami headed the Venezuelan branch of the Baath Party, while his great-uncle Shibli el-Aissami was a close Saddam ally and served as assistant to the Secretary General of the Baath Party.

Before the invasion of Iraq, Carlos El-Aissami held a press conference in which he described himself as a Taliban and called Osama Bin Laden, “the great Mujahedeen, Sheik Osama bin Laden”. The son, Tareck el-Aissimi who headed up Venezuela’s visa department and now serves as deputy justice minister, began as student union leader supervising drug dealing and a car theft ring, while intimidating his rivals. He maintained links to terrorist organizations. With the rise of Chavez, Tariq El-Aissimi’s rise began as well.

When discussing South America, one of the most understated topics is the extent to which Arab terrorist networks have developed a foothold from Mexico to Uruguay. Lebanese, Syrian and Palestinian Arab immigrants have infiltrated the economic, business and political lives of South American nations spawning crime rings, drug smuggling and political corruption. The bombing of the AMIA Jewish center in Argentina would not have been possible without the complicity of Argentina’s Syrian immigrant President Carlos Menem.

The simple list of Arab South American Presidents is startling in and of itself. These include Abdalá Bucaram, the Arab President of Ecuador. Antonio Saca, the current Palestinian Arab President of Ecuador. Jacobo Majluta, the former Lebanese Arab President of the Dominican Republic. Jamil Mahuad, the former Lebanese Arab President of Ecuador. Carlos Menem, the former Syrian Arab President of Argentina. Said Musa, the current Palestinian Arab Prime Minister of Belize. Edward Seaga, the former Lebanese Arab Prime Minister of Jamaica. Julio Cesar Turbay, the former Lebanese Arab President of Colombia. Carlos Flores Facusse, the Palestinian Arab former President of Honduras.

See, the thing about a world-wide diaspora is that it actually is world wide!

Now let’s kick it up another notch, and think a little bit about terrorists collaborating with criminal gangs. It happens. And it’s been going on for quite some time:

Located where Argentina, Brazil and Paraguay meet, the area is home to roughly 20,000 Middle Eastern immigrants—mostly from Lebanon and Syria—and has long been a hotbed for terrorist fundraising, arms and drug trafficking, counterfeiting and money laundering. By moving freely through the region’s porous borders, operatives from the terrorist organizations Hizbollah, Hamas, and according to some reports, al-Qaeda, are able to conduct arms-for-drugs deals with secular Latin American terrorist groups like the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) and Peru’s Sendero Luminosos (Shining Path). All told, U.S. officials believe that between $10 and $12 billion is funneled through the tri-border region each year, with Hizbollah among the prime beneficiaries.

So, do you think it would be better to clean up our own hemisphere first, or keep pretending that all the action is over there in sandland?

... and another year goes by with no wall and very little border security.


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 11/18/2007 at 03:08 PM   
Filed Under: • Miscellaneous •  
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calendar   Friday - November 16, 2007

sounds like judicial activism to me

Here’s the story

SAN FRANCISCO(AP)


A federal appeals court sharply rejected the Bush administration’s new pollution standards for most sport utility vehicles, pickup trucks and vans and ordered regulators Thursday to draft a new plan that’s tougher on auto emissions.

The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration failed to address why the so-called light trucks are allowed to pollute more than passenger cars and didn’t properly assess greenhouse gas emissions when it set new minimum miles-per-gallon requirements for models in 2008 to 2011.

The court also said the administration failed to include in the new rules heavier trucks driven as commuter vehicles, among several other deficiencies found.

Judge Betty Fletcher wrote that the administration “cannot put a thumb on the scale by undervaluing the benefits and overvaluing the costs of more stringent standards.”

Charles Miller, a Justice Department spokesman, said the administration was in the process of reviewing the decision. “We will consider all of our options,” he said.

California and 10 other states, two cities and four environmental groups sued the administration after it announced the new fuel economy standards last year.

“It’s a stunning rebuke to the Bush administration and its failed energy policy,” California Attorney General Jerry Brown said.

Jerry Brown? Isn’t that the same old pinko hippy who used to ... nevermind.

I do somewhat agree with what the court is trying to do. If we are to have vehicular mpg standards then they should apply to all vehicles. It seems to me that almost all SUVs and pickup trucks are used as personal, non-commercial, transportation. But is this the way to do it? Can’t our super-wonderfultm legislators work this kind of thing out in advance? This story stinks of opportunistic Gotcha politics. Or should the whole thing be turned around, and let freedom and capitalism decide which vehicles to sell? There sure seems to be a market for gas sucking monster trucks these days. Wonder why?

The court ordered the White House to examine why it continues to consider light trucks differently than cars. Regulators made a distinction between cars and light trucks decades ago when most trucks were used for commercial purposes.

NHTSA had argued that it considered the intent of the manufacturer in making light trucks, rather than their actual highway use, in developing the new fuel standards.

Yeah , no kidding. Detroit really throws the BS with their “professional grade” ads, and all the other “work truck” ads that show their vehicles carrying tons of gravel up the muddy mountainsides. But the plain truth is that most of these things are never even driven on an unpaved road, much less through the outback, and spend their time schlepping suburban moms and their kids to soccer practice and the grocery store.

Along with California and Connecticut, plaintiffs in the lawsuit filed last year include Maine, Massachusetts, Minnesota, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont, New York City, the District of Columbia and several environmental groups.

Wow, look at the plaintiffs. I give you less than one guess to pick the political party behind this lawsuit. That would be the party of Endless Complaint But No Actual Solutions, right?


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 11/16/2007 at 01:30 PM   
Filed Under: • Miscellaneous •  
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LOST (money that is)

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You are looking at nearly half a billion dollars of your tax money going to waste. 18,000 trailers and mobile homes. These are most - but not all - of the emergency housing trailers that FEMA purchased to help the people down on the Gulf Coast that were devastated by hurricanes Katrina and Rita. Two years ago. They sit idle, unused, undistributed, slowly rotting away, around the airport in Hope Arkansas. FEMA bought them all then decided they couldn’t be distributed locally to the flooding victims because they live on a flood plain! Then there was that business about how they all could be opened with the same key. Next we hear that -oh, the horrors! - 11,000 of the trailers may have been made with insulation containing formaldehyde!

Let’s not forget that the government is STILL paying the rent and living expenses of thousands of those poor displaced victims. I have no idea if the NOLA cops are still living on a cruise ship, but that wouldn’t surprise me either.

Heather Crawford from KATV has a nice roundup on the story with a decent video (which only wants to run in IE on my PC):

FEMA is storing thousands of mobile homes in Hope, and what may surprise you is practically all of them are brand new. They have never been lived in and have just sat here unoccupied for more than two years.

(Congressman Mike Ross, (D) 4th District) “After they bought them, they decided they wouldn’t locate them in a flood plain. And guess what? Everybody who lost their home and needed housing lived in a flood plain.”

So instead of being put to use, they sit empty.

(Senator Mark Pryor, (D) Arkansas) “It’s a story of incompetence. It’s a story of very very bad government policy and just the inability for FEMA to function the way it should.”

In addition to the mobile homes, FEMA is also storing about 11,000 travel-trailers in Hope that have been used. They were being auctioned off, but due to the presence of potentially dangerous levels of formaldehyde they are now no longer being sold.

(Eric Smith, FEMA Head of Logistics) “We’re working with Centers for Disease Control and Health and Human Services to complete an assessment on the feasibility of standards that are acceptable for formaldehyde, and based on that assessment--when we receive that assessment--a decision will be made as to whether we will continue the sales of the travel-trailers or dispose of them by some other means.”

Hope isn’t the only location in the country where FEMA is storing its emergency housing units, but it is by far the largest. FEMA originally signed a two-year lease with the city of Hope to use the land, and the mayor says the agency is now in the process of extending it for at least another year.

The cost is $300,000 annually--money that can only be used for the Hope Municipal Airport.

(Dennis Ramsey, Hope Mayor) “We’ve been in discussion for the last year that this may be what’s called a semi-permanent facility. We’ve heard talk of 8-10 years, but at a reduced inventory out here than what’s here now.”

The cost to the lease the land is just a small fraction of what the mobile homes cost. FEMA says the price tag for each one in 2005 was about $33,000. Today about 7,000 are sitting in Hope unused--that’s $231 million worth.

Plus, FEMA spent $4.5 million to put down gravel on 140 acres so the mobile homes and trailers wouldn’t sink.

(Ross) “I mean this stuff is so crazy you couldn’t make it up. Again, it’s a symbol of what’s wrong with FEMA.”

Tack on the cost of the 11,000 used travel-trailers that aren’t being sold because of formaldehyde, and that’s an additional $187 million (travel-trailers cost $17,000 each).

And then there are 45 employees who are paid to work at the site, and operational costs, which FEMA says totals more than a half-million annually. That’s a total of more than $424 million out of taxpayers pockets.

My calculator adds up these numbers at 434.1 million, including 2 years rent and running expenses. So it isn’t quite a full half billion sitting in Hope, but I don’t have the costs at the other storage areas so it probably does add up to that much.

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Now, as for that formaldehyde situation: The eeevviill government raced out and bought whatever trailers they could find. Most of them are second hand. They were NOT built to FEMA spec; they’re the same trailers you or I could purchase if we wanted to. FEMA then did an expensive study to find ways of combatting this awful outgassing (/sarcasm) and concluded that the best high tech solution would be to open the damn windows. I kid you not!

Naturally, because FEMA (and anyone else who has a trailer) knew about the outgassing problem ahead of time, they are being sued. You know, because FEMA is the government, and the government is Bush, and of course because

Bush Hates Black Peopletm.

UPDATE: These units seem to have been built by the Gulf Stream Coach company, who admits to “having” to use cheaper building materials because of the pressure to build as many as they could in such a short time period.

Terry Sloan was a floor supervisor at a Gulf Stream Coach factory in Etna Green, Ind. Gulf Stream Coach built more than 50,000 stripped-down travel trailers.  Sloane says his crew worked at a breakneck pace for months, which, he says, forced the company to use cheaper wood products. “Quality suffered dramatically because of the drive and pressure to put these trailers out,” Sloan said.

So if FEMA contracted Gulf Stream to build the things, and Gulf Stream cut corners and used low grade materials (don’t ask me why low grade parts make production any faster than regular parts) then isn’t it Gulf Stream who ought to be the party named in the lawsuit? And if the formaldehyde situation is really all that bad, then why are these kinds of materials even on the market? Which would imply that it’s the building materials companies that really ought to be the target of any lawsuits? It’s a big can of worms fer shure!

UPDATE: KATV has run part two of the story, with more video. Not much new info, but more video. Some of the units are falling apart already. Duh. They also get a look inside the mobile homes, and we see that they are pre-furnished with brand new furniture and appliances. Never used. Go here for the story.



It looks to me like FEMA has managed to pack more moonbattery into this situation than was previously possible.

batbatbatbatbatbatbatbatbatbatbatbat


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 11/16/2007 at 12:31 PM   
Filed Under: • Climate-WeatherMiscellaneousTaxes •  
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