"Life moves pretty fast. You don't stop and look around once in awhile, you could miss it." - Ferris Bueller

Friday, February 27, 2004
 
On Racism:

Sigh. Here we go again.

There should be one less Congressional representative from Florida today. Really, there should. Representative Corrine Brown (D-Fl) should be forced to resign because of here disgraceful comments aimed at Assistant Secretary of State Roger Noriega yesterday. Why is she still in congress? Because there is a glaring double standard in the way racism is dealt with in today’s politically correct society.

Haven’t heard about this? I’m not surprised. You can read about her remarks and subsequent apology here.

Representative Brown lit into Assistant Secretary Noriega for the W administration policy regarding the broiling cesspool that most people refer to as Haiti. I’m fine with that. You want to disagree, go right ahead. But then Ms. Brown crossed a line that, if she were someone else of another race, would’ve been front page news across the country and the resulting backlash would’ve seen to it that Ms. Brown found her way to the unemployment line this morning.

She first accused the W Administration’s Haitian policy as ‘racist’ and called all of W’s representatives ‘a bunch of white men’.

Now remember, the Assistant Secretary of State is a man by the name of Roger Noriega. For those of you unfamiliar with the ancestry of that particular name, its time to learn something: Mr. Noriega is of Hispanic decent. For those of you over taken by the political correct hyphenated definitions, Mr. Noriega is Mexican-American. He is not white. Ms. Brown was sitting across the table from Mr. Noriega. Her response when confronted with her glaring error?

You all look alike to me.

Switch the tables for a second. If any other person, Hispanic, White, Asian, or otherwise would’ve said the same thing to Ms. Brown, she might’ve come unglued right then and there and had a conniption fit. The NAACP would be calling for Noriega’s head right now, and they just might get it.

But Ms. Brown gets a pass. If that’s not a racial double standard, I don’t know what is. The people who elect this sorry excuse for a congresswoman should be ashamed. Yes, I did call her a sorry excuse for a congresswoman. Sue me.

I do, however, admire Mr. Noriega for his response to this sorry excuse for a congresswoman. After informing her that he not in fact a white man, he then informed her that he would pass along her complaint to Secretary of State Colin Powell and National Security Advisor Condeleeza Rice. Though they are African-American, I’m sure Ms. Brown considers them part of the white men problem as well. That is another topic for another time.

Just one question for Ms. Brown: In the sorry excuse for the Clinton Administration, can you please name for me the highest ranking African-American person in his pathetic cabinet? Take your time. I’ll wait.

While Ms. Brown searches for that answer, I’ll let the rest of you get back to work. Might be a while before she realizes that there isn’t an answer to find.

And, for those of you keeping score on the results of the much touted Clinton foreign policy legacy, be sure to add the Haitian mess to the North Korean nuclear program. For someone who ran on the relative unimportance of foreign affairs expertise in a president, it sure as hell is defining his legacy.

Here endeth the lesson.

Wednesday, February 25, 2004
 
On Ron Page:

For those of you who don’t know Ron Page, he currently serves the W administration as the Secretary of Education. It is a thankless job, mostly due to the fact that, according to conventional wisdom as held by liberals, there is never enough money spent on education at the state, federal, local, or any other level. Never mind the fact the US spends more on education than it does on nearly any other program – Defense and Homeland Security included.

Ron Page made a private comment during a meeting of the nation’s governors the other day in which he referred to the National Education Association as a terrorist organization. Liberals were outraged. The NEA called for Page’s immediate dismissal, as though they believed in some parallel universe they have the clout to dictate who serves in W’s cabinet. All in all it was a pretty normal day inside the beltway.

Now for a short overview of the facts. The National Education Association (NEA) is a union made up predominately of teachers, school administrators, and other such people. Let me first state, for the record, that I hold teachers in a very high regard. They have a very thankless job. Anyone who doubts that should spend a few hours taking kindergartners on a field trip. I did, yesterday, and I still have the headache. They are, for the most part, vastly underpaid and under-appreciated.

The NEA does not represent the vast majority of the people making up its ranks. The NEA, as an organization, forces teachers to join as a condition of employment and then deducts from their meager paychecks union dues used for political purposes regardless of the views of the union members from which said funds are forcibly extracted. I don’t know about you, but I define that as Thuggery.

My questions to the NEA are many. Have schools improved on your watch? Has student performance on standardized tests improved on your watch? Why is it so hard to fire incompetent teachers/principals/administrators?

We spend so much money on public education in this country, yet around this great nation, millions of children are trapped in failing, crumbling, and inadequate school systems. Never the less, the NEA blocks each and every effort to introduce reform measures such as teacher competency measures and school choice. Every single time. And the do it with the money confiscated from the very people they claim to represent.

The NEA is not about doing what is best for students, or even its own membership. The NEA is all about protecting itself. It does so at the expense of several generations of Americans it has poorly prepared for the reality of life beyond the graduation platform. That, my friends, is a crime.

Perhaps Mr. Page did choose his words poorly when using “terrorist” to define the NEA. If that is the case, he really isn’t that far from the truth.

Here endeth the lesson.

Friday, February 20, 2004
 
On Howie's End:

This is the way the world ends
This is the way the world ends
This is the way the world ends
Not with a bang but a whimper

- The Hollow Men by TS Eliot

Howie's end came not with a whimper, but a scream that, had I not heard it for myself I would have attributed to Gonzo from The Muppet Show. But when you consider the fact that Howie and Company burned through nearly $50 million on the way to that fateful night in Iowa, his end really did come with a whimper.

One can only hope Howie drifts back into that small obscure corner of Vermont from which he came. One can also hope to win the Virginia Powerball Lottery - this week scheduled to be worth about a quarter billion dollars. The chances of one happening are about as good as the other.

I did not usually take time from my schedule to watch the nine dwarf's debate policy nuance. I had more important things to do - I would have found something more important to do - possibly watch a Seinfeld rerun. I did however catch the highlight reel after one debate, and one thing Howie said really made sense to me. He said:

You can't trust the right wing with your tax money.

And for once, I agreed with Howie. Ok, everybody get back on your chair. Yes, I did agree with something Howie said. You can't trust the right wing with your tax money. You can't trust the left wing with your tax money. Hell, you can't trust anyone inside the beltway with your tax money - and I haven't even gotten started with the nuts running the tax show on the state and local levels.

That, dear Howie is why there is only one solution to the problem you put forth. If neither the right nor left wing can be trusted with tax money, the only solution left is to send as little of said tax money to them as possible.

Here endeth the lesson.

Thursday, February 19, 2004
 
On Rights (Part 1 of a no doubt on going saga):

Let me begin by first explaining the origin of the idea for this series. I've been kicking this idea around for some time, but the "crystallizing" event came from a long time friend and fellow blogger, Cinnabari. Some time ago, she posted a few paragraphs on her blog, something along the lines of telling people they didn't have a right to go through life in an unoffended manner.

Well, this woke up my muse and he/she/it has been chattering non stop ever since. I feel like I must explore and explain this topic if for no other reason than to shut he/she/it up. Now, if you visit Cinnabari's blog, you'll find that we don't agree on much. She is, in my humble, unbiased opinion, one of the best science fiction writers around. Anyone with the keys to a publisher's press would be well served to pay her a big chunk of change for her work. Though we may not see eye to eye on much, she does make me think, which is one of the reasons she is one of my dearest friends.

End of digression.

Rights. We all have them. The Declaration of Independence states the following:

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.

The Constitution goes on to enumerate other rights. The first ten amendments, or Bill of Rights for those of you who flunked your high school civics course, spell out the freedom of speech, assembly, press, religion, the right to keep and bear arms, protection from unlawful search and seizure and self incrimination, and so forth.

What I want to explore here is the rights which people seem to have given themselves as of late. I have a few I'll explain here, and whenever I find another one, I'll add it to my list. Some of you may want to take notes, as you may not have the rights you think you have.

1. Employment.
You do not have a right to work in this country. No one is required to hire you, give you a job, or otherwise employ you in any way, shape manner or form. You have the freedom to choose your vocation. If in making this choice you choose a profession that is less than profitable, you do not have the right to expect to be bailed out. If your skills are not suited to the current marketplace, go get some that are. You can do a lot of things in this country. John Wayne gave a great soliloquy about this concept in The Alamo while portraying Davy Crockett:

Republic. I like the sound of that word. It means a man can breathe free. Come or go, buy or sell, be drunk or sober. A man can do that in a Republic.

2. Offense.
Now this one I take almost directly from Cinnabari. You do not have a right to walk through this life unoffended. Sorry about that. Get over it. Get over yourself. People are different. They think different from you, they believe different than you. That is, by the way, their right to do so. In my humble opinion, there are a lot of thin skinned people out there who need to be offended.

3. Freedom of Speech.
You'd think after 228 years, we'd have figured this one out. You have the freedom to say whatever the hell you want, within certain very broad restrictions. You can't openly threaten the President. If you have access to classified data you can't go blabbing it to the New York Times. You can't yell "Fire!" in a crowded theatre. Within those limits, say what you want. The catch about the whole deal is two-fold. First - this freedom applies to everyone. You may go on your diatribe about someone, group of people, issue or whatever. Just be prepared for the object of your rant to turn around and rip you up one side and down the other. If what they say offends you, please see item 2 in this list. Second, and something that would seem to be patently obvious - Nobody has to listen to you. Freedom of Speech neither includes nor implies a right to be heard.

4. Success.
Nobody has a right to success. That is earned, most times through extreme effort, long hours, and great risks. You would do much better to emulate those who have succeeded in life that to criticize them for their lifestyle.

5. The Level Playing Field
All animals are created equal. Some animals are created more equal than others. - George Orwell -Animal Farm

Life is not fair. I apologize if I have just burst your world view bubble. Some people are just better at what they do than others. If there is something you really want to do, and for some reason just can't seem to do it well enough to be competitive, you have two choices - a) get better at it, or b) find something else that you're good at.

I'm sure there will be more of this that I'll get around to, but for now,

Here endeth the lesson.

Thursday, February 12, 2004
 
On John Kerry (Part 2 of the continuing saga):

You know, when Howie imploded with his “I have a scream” speech, I thought John ‘Lurch’ Kerry would make the process of zinging the opposition a dreary act.

Well, let me say here, for the record, Lurch has proven me wrong. He’s making this far too easy, and therefore much more fun.

No mainstream media will report on this, but it seems Lurch has an intern problem. No, he did not learn from Wilhelm von der Schliekmeister. Bubba Clinton got a somewhat free pass with Monica. OK, so it made him an inept President, ruined his legacy, and made him the butt of all jokes for the foreseeable future. You’d think those that followed after Bubba would have learned to lock their interns up. Well, evidently Lurch didn’t get the memo.

Matt Drudge has posted the first of what will no doubt be many stories with vivid details about Lurch and his conquest. Readers will no doubt be shocked by the fact this latest conquest is not a wealthy heiress. Monica’s story led to the impeachment and near political destruction of a sitting President. Lurch, I’m afraid, will never get to go that far.

And for those of us who are listening to the background chatter, Howie can be heard in the background:

I’m not dead!!

I should not take pleasures in the stupidity of others, but I can’t help myself.

Here endeth the lesson.


Thursday, February 05, 2004
 
On John Kerry (Part 1 of the continuing saga):

Let me begin by saying I take the quotes below from a speech given by William F. Buckley, Jr. to the Corp of Cadets at the United States Military Academy at West Point on June 8, 1971. Being only a few months old on that date, I did not attend the event.

Regarding John Kerry’s military service, I have no criticism for a man who, according to his service record, exemplified the gallantry and courage associated with Naval officers in the face of enemy fire. He risked his life to save the lives of others and for that he was awarded medals and honors of which I have no doubt he merited at that time.

I am a child of the Vietnam era. My father was commissioned as an officer in the United States Army shortly before my birth (about the time Buckley gave this speech) and served honorably in many places for twenty-years. I grew up around the widows and fatherless children rendered so by the Vietnam War.

I do not intend to use this forum as a place in which to debate the Vietnam War. I will only say that America lost her first war because she would not let her soldiers, sailors, airmen, and marines fight the war in a way in which it could be won. The war was lost in the halls of Congress and the corridors of the Pentagon – not in the rice paddies of Southeast Asia. Those, my friends, are facts. Facts are stubborn things.

I firmly believe John Kerry left whatever gallantry he gained in Vietnam on the field of battle. His public and personal life choices since that time show that. He made a big spectacle of throwing his ribbons over the White House fence in a show of defiance on behalf of all the veterans for whom he claimed to speak. Never mind the fact the actual medals hold a place of honor on the walls of his senate office. That, Lurch, is what we in the business call ‘hypocrisy’. You can’t burn the flag in one decade and then wrap yourself in it in the next.

John Kerry came home from Vietnam a hero. Fifteen minutes later he sullied his service, his comrades in arms, and his country by falsely accusing those with whom he fought and bled of committing war crimes at every opportunity. He past along anecdotal recollection as fact. Sorry, Lurch. Facts are stubborn things. If you ask me, and since its my blog I’ll answer anyway, you saw your opportunity for your fifteen minutes of fame and took it.

Thirty years and two rich widows later, Lurch is going to pay a heavy price for those fifteen minutes.

Here endeth the lesson.


Wednesday, February 04, 2004
 
In defense of MBA's:

I have an MBA. W has an MBA and a one from Haavvvaard at that. These degrees are not easy to receive. The American Thinker guy agrees, as he too has a Harvard MBA and a Ph.D to boot. My MBA may not be from Haaavaard, but never the less, I agree with this guy on the kind of people who complete a graduate level of business education.

There endeth the lesson.


Tuesday, February 03, 2004
 
On Bringing out the Dead:

A man pulling a cart laden with the corpses of democratic presidential campaigns is making its way through the American countryside this week. On the cart you find the campaign of Carol “Movin’ on up” Mosely-Braun. Soon there will be more of the nine to fall.

A cry flies forth from the cart driver:

Bring out your dead!

The gong clangs.

Bring out your dead!!

I believe one, possibly two campaigns will be added to the cart this week. The first is Joe Lieberman. Sad, really. I kinda like the guy even though he shilled for Algore. Too conservative for Mcauliff and company. Another will most likely be Wesley ‘Wanna See my Stars?’ Clark.

Speaking of Terry ‘I’m not a party chairman, but I play one on CNN’ Mcauliff, he’s the one pushing a few of these campaigns toward the cart.

Bring out your dead! Bellows the cart driver as he drives past the Dean campaign headquarters. Terry pushes Dean toward the cart.

Dean protests, I’m not dead!

Terry – Yes you are! You’ve been dead since Iowa!

Dean – But I’m feeling better! I think I’ll go for a walk to North Dakota. I’m sure I’ll do better there!

Terry – to the cart pusher – When will you be back around?

Cart pusher – A week after the next primary. Maybe sooner.

Terry – Oh he’ll be stone cold dead by then!

Dean – I feel happy!! I feel happy!!

Terry searches for a crowbar as the cart pusher moves on.

Signs of life, though week, persist in the camp of Edwards, though the stench of death is so pervasive around the Kucinich camp that no one dares knock at the door. Clark and Sharpton are deemed to silly to bother throwing on the cart. ‘Lurch’ Kerry is the flavor of the month, although the cart pusher can swear he took Kerry to the bone yard years ago. He borrows a line from Governor Schwarzenegger’s last movie The Sixth Day:

Doesn’t anybody stay dead anymore?

Here endeth the lesson.



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