Monday, October 31, 2005

Funny video of Gregory Gall taking ball from Brett Favre

Via, it took one day for someone to take the video of drunk fan Gregory Gall stealing the football from Brett Favre and superimpose "The King" in Gall's place. See the video here.

This is a funny video, and I hate "The King". Personally, I'd like to see McDonald's score some points off this whole thing though. They should take the video of the security guard laying this guy out, superimpose "The King" over Gall, and then superimpose Grimace over the security guard. Watching Grimace rattle "The King's" retinas would ensure that I ate 20% more McDonald's.

HuffPo brings us the dumbest blog post ever

Steve Cobble at HuffPo brings what may be the dumbest blog post I have ever read. The post, titled Morality Play: Diverse Team Wins, Monochrome Team Loses, tries to make the case that the Chicago White Sox are somehow more deserving of a World Series title because they "look like America," whereas the Astros are a very white team. A taste:
On the theory that even HuffPost readers cannot live on Scooter & Karl alone, I cannot let the just-ended World Series go by without a comment. It was a great series.

It was made better for me by the fact that the very diverse Chicago White Sox, who look like America, defeated the retro-looking, and very pale, Houston Astros.

Here's why this is the dumbest blog post ever. The pre-Jackie Robinson, all white Major League Baseball was a terrible thing because talented and very qualified ball players were kept out of the league solely because of the color of their skin. Since the 1970's, though, Major League Baseball has become about the most color blind entity you can imagine. What counts in today's baseball is the production on the field. With a stupid post like this, Cobble sets the sport and to some extent the country back 40 years. Who cares if the Houston Astros were a very white team? Those white players were the best talent available to the Astros, and that collection of players was also the best team in the National League this year. Part of the reason we celebrate Jackie Robinson today is because when he broke through the color barrier, he started baseball on the path towards becoming a meritocracy where race doesn't matter. The "very pale" Houston Astros earned the National League pennant. By bringing race into this, Cobble is dirties the meritocracy that Jackie Robinson started the sport towards. It would be a very different issue if their were any proof what so ever that the Astros were discriminating against hiring minority ball players, but that's just not the case. In fact, if any of the top ten minority ball players in the game said they wanted to play in Houston at a price the Astros could afford, I guarantee you the team would jump at the chance to sign them.

This is just another example of how far the left has jumped the tracks of traditional liberalism. If the goal of the Civil Rights Movement was to create a color blind society, current liberals, nay, progressives are doing their damndest to prevent it by interjecting color into everything.

Miers a class act

Andy McCarthy makes a point at The Corner that should be repeated often:
I'd like to note this before it gets lost in the swarm of deserved coverage about Judge Alito's merits. The Wall Street Journal reports this morning that White House Counsel Harriett Miers was with the President over the weekend, helping him sort through the available choices and settle on a nominee for the Supreme Court seat that was dangled before her up until her honorable withdrawal last week.

That had to be a very hard thing to do, but judging from the apparent choice, she did it with her characteristic professionalism.

I don't know her, but she sure sounds like a class act. The President and the country should be grateful for her service.
Couldn't agree more. The dissent over her nomination was never about her being a bad person or incapable. It was about her not being the best person for the job.

Alito's Way

It's official, President Bush has nominated Samuel Alito for the Supreme Court. Gird your loins for battle, conservatives. It is going to be a knock down, drag out fight to get this confirmation, and we'll need to battle at least twice as hard as we did against the Miers nomination.

Conservative bloggers, a good way to start might be to join Blogs for Bush's Alito Coalition.

A flu story

Tonight the History Channel had a special on the Avian flu. It was a worst case scenario, as are all media portrayals. It seems authorative and scary, but when it comes down to it, their scenario is an educated guess. No one can predict how deadly a mutated Avian flu would be to people, and no one can predict how societies will react to it. With that, I'd like to present my own fictional guesstimate as to what the future holds as something of a counterpoint to all of today's dooms day scenarios.

Somewhere in a densly populated, poor region of Asia, possible China or Malaysia or Vietnam, the bird flu mutates. The mutated virus becomes easily transmitted between humans. At very first, the mutation is overlooked, but all too soon it becomes apparent to the entire world that the virus has mutated as a large portion of the host nation's population becomes sick. Borders around Asia are shut down. Western nations close their borders to anything from Asian nations. The flu very quickly spreads in Asia, as closed borders are not enough. The Western media goes into full crisis mode, and governments begin to panic a little. And so do citizens.

National economies slowly begin to close up to the outside world, but they do not halt. In fact, within nations there is a huge spending splurge as people buy the things they think they need. But then it happens. A case of the Avian flu pops up in Turkey. Then Canada. Then Russia. Then Western Europe. Then the rest of the Americas.

The flu spreads more quickly than any illness has ever spread across the globe. International travel never ceased, it just closed up to "common" people, and the remaining travel of diplomats, militaries, and other government and business officials spreads the flu around the globe. Panic fully sets in, aided and abetted by media outlets. Poor nations become very violent. Rich nations become violent and their economies slow greatly, but black markets surge. Things look very bad.

But then something becomes apparent. When the virus mutated, it became easier to transmit from human to human, but it also became less lethal. Fewer people are dying than was expected. Instead of half of the infected dying, health professionals are discovering that roughly 7% or 8 % of the infected are dying. The number of people dying from the flu still strains societies' abilities to process the dead, but it is not unmanageable. And in healthier, wealthier nations, people's immune systems are much more capable of fighting the virus, leading to lower death rates.

Unlike past pandemic flus, the worst of this one passes very quickly-in one flu season. By the end of the first season of this flu, several things have happened. A vaccine has been developed and manufactured. Scientists sequestered by governments also make a breakthrough on the treatment of flu viruses. These two events allow humans to set up something of a firewall against the virus before it can go through a second or a third wave of infections.

The world economy by this time has taken a hit. The combination of ill and dying workers and people willingly removing themselves from the free market for black markets leaves the world in a depressed economy. Things begin to ramp up quickly, though. A lot needs to be done, and and people need to be hired to do those things. In looking back on the pandemic, a couple of things become apparent. First, people panicked unneccessarily, in part because they had been conditioned by mass media to do so. Second, scientists admit that they could have created vaccines in advance of the pandemic that would have given people some but not full immunity to the virus. Had those vaccines been made and distributed, it would have reduced further the lethality of the virus. Third, leadership in many nations is found wanting. Had the leaders in those nations actually led, they would have calmed their populations and reduced the panic.

The most disturbing legacy of the avian flu is a distrust in state governments and market economies. People become more willing to accept global governments and the influence of global NGO's, thinking this is the only way to exert control of these situations in the future. They also become much more willing to accept socialization, thinking this is the only way that they can be taken care of in these situations in the future. The budding global economic recovery stalls as nations find their place in this new world.
I hate writing on this topic, and this prognostication is not exactly rosy. But this seems much more logical than the dooms day scenarios the media spins out, scenarios that have hundreds of millions of billions dying and the global economy all but shutting down.


I was doing one last pass through of the Badgersphere for the evening, and I saw that October was Leaning Blue's blogiversary (Happy blogiversary, Belle!). I went back and checked out Belle's first month, and then got all nostalgic for my October and early November last year. It was a very exciting time for this humble blog. One year ago today, I wrote The Ghost of Curly Lambeau, a post in which I declared that John Kerry had called down a curse upon himself when he called Lambeau Field Lambert Field. That curse cancelled out the Washington Redskins predictor of Presidential elections. On November 1, Hugh Hewitt linked to the Ghost post, and this website had its single biggest day traffic-wise. Additionally, I got called out on a liberal website, Watching the Watchers, as a racist. I enjoyed being challenged and fully engaging the ignorant oaf. November 1-2 of last year were probably the two most enjoyable days I've had as a blogger, just edging out being mentioned on TV.

But I also learned a big lesson immediately after those two days. Traffic was huge, and then I went off to Las Vegas, as I will do this week. My room did not have an internet connection, and I was unable to write for several days. That huge rush of traffic dried up immediately. When I did not have new or compelling material, I lost most of the audience the "Hughicane" had brought me. After thinking I was big blog on campus for a couple days, I came to learn that traffic blitzes are fleeting, and that building a regular audience over time is much more important. Would I love this blog to be a million visit site right now? Hell yes. But I haven't earned that yet, and I'm happy to see the traffic slowly and consistently grow. Maybe if I'm patient enough, I can just out last everybody else. :-).

I don't say it often enough. Thank you to my regular visitors, my occasional visitors, and my one time visitors. I used to write in a journal, and I'd lose interest in it quickly. Whether you like it or not, those of you who stop by here to visit, and maybe comment once in a while, keep me going. Thank you.

Sunday, October 30, 2005

A tale of two papers

The Journal Sentinel and the State Journal both published stories today on Halloween in Madison. I'm not sure which to believe. The State Journal's story made last nights event look like a small number of rabble rousers who got pepper sprayed, and who probably deserved it. The Journal Sentinel, on the other hand, tries to make things look like it was just short of the night of the long knives, with gross police abuse of power. I'm leaning towards giving the State Journal's version of events a little more validity than the Journal Sentinel's. The Journal Sentinel seems just a little too sensational.

Was anybody there last night that can comment on this?

Read Letters in Bottles for a first hand account with pictures.

Wrong, wrong, wrong!

I had to observe Wigderson's trick or treat rule "Other #1":
1. Don't ogle the sixteen-year-old in the cheerleader costume. Especially if you play pro football or if you've been drinking or if you have a hot tub. Or all three.
That's just wrong. I have a parents' rule for trick or treating. If your son has grown facial hair or your daughter has moved on from that training bra, it might be time to put the kaibash on trick or treating. If they have their driver's license, it definitely is. If they can legally buy smokes but are still trick or treating, and doing so in revealing clothes, its time to kick them out of the house and call the cops.

Vote Wigderson

Jiblog endorses Wigderson Library & Pub for this week's MKEonline Blog of the Week contest. Go and vote now!

Tagged, I'm it

Normally I don't play blog tag games, but I was tagged by Mary Eileen with this one, and I've found it amusing. Here are the rules:
1. Go into your archives.
2. Find your 23rd post (or closest to it).
3. Post the fifth sentence (or closest to it).
4. Post the text of the sentence in your blog along
with these instructions.
5. Tag five other people to do the same thing.
Okay, here's my 23rd post, titled "Crib notes". And here is the fifth sentence:
It was their's for the taking, a political ruling class in the name of Kennedy.
I like the sentence. The entry was about possible bitterness that lefties had over the fact that there is a Bush dynasty.

I'm going to break a rule of the game now. I'm not going to tag anyone. But if you want to give it a try, consider yourself tagged by me.

Drudge makes fun of MoDo

A couple of posts below, I briefly touched on Maureen Dowd's latest piece of self pity. In that article, there is a 30's style picture of Dowd all tarted up, sitting at a bar. It is an odd picture to be included with an op-ed piece, even if that op-ed is in a "magazine" as this was. Today, Drudge makes fun of it, opening up a caption contest for his readers. My favorite so far?
"If You Want To Keep The Beer Cold, Put It Next To My Heart."

Wilma's 2

Drudge brings us this radar image of Wilma. I'd link to the original article but it doesn't seem to work. Notice the 2 in Wilma's eye. I'm not a 'signs' type of person, but on this one I'm willing to believe that Wilma was telling us what she planned to do to Florida-a number 2.

Madison Halloween-I was wrong

Halloween in Madison came off rather peacefully. Outside of a small group of idiots who volunteered to be pepper sprayed, everyone else pretty much behaved themselves. I was wrong in my bubbling cauldron prediction. Madison officials, enjoy this one. I'm right much more often than I'm wrong.

Saturday, October 29, 2005

Quebec to divorce Canada?

The secessionist movement is picking up steam again in Quebec. Every ten years or so, Quebec begins feeling grievously unloved by the Canadian government and makes a stir about seceding. I know it would be a headache for our Canadian brethren, but it is time to call that whiny province's bluff. Put up or shut up, Quebec. When you leave, you get your share of the Canadian national debt. Don't let the door hit you on the rump on the way out.

It ain't easy being Mo-Do

Life must be hell for Maureen Dowd. One of the things she loves in life, men, is the thing she may resent more than anything else. On top of that, now she feels betrayed by modern women.

The art of a future serial killer

Ever look at handwriting or a drawing and facetiousl say, "there's a serial killer"? Even if you haven't, I give you exhibit A. Future serial killer, thy name is David Mamet.

Mixing Vegas and Wisconsin

Over at the Journal Sentinel, Mandy Jenkins discusses her recent visit to Las Vegas in her blog:
As much fun as it was to keep an eye on everyone in Vegas, I was ready for disinteresting quiet on the redeye flight home. Wisconsin again did not show up to sit quietly. Settling into my seat after two plane delays, I quickly noticed that the middle-aged couple in front of me were completely obliterated (I spent the delays reading, they spent it getting liquored up). I (and everyone else within a few rows) could hear them start arguments over every little verbal misstep, ranting in slurred drunk-speak. As the stewardess went down the aisle to check seat belts and hand out pillows, the woman grabbed her arm and asked for a Jack 'n Coke (what is it with the JD?). The attendant looked taken aback. “Um ... we don’t offer in-flight drink service until we’re at cruising altitude.”

When that time came, the woman wanted another drink, but her husband talked her into getting some soda, straight-up. Within seconds, she had dumped the drink all over her seat, all over the arm of her man’s UW sweatshirt and all over my bag under her seat. So they were moved across the aisle and thankfully passed out....
From Wednesday through Saturday of this coming week, things will be sporadic here as I will be working in Vegas. Yes, believe it or not, some people do work there. If history is any guide, I am going to be exhausted by the time I board the plane back to Milwaukee. I can handle seeing everything Mandy saw in Vegas, but by the time I get on that plane Saturday night, all I will want is peace and quiet. Something tells me I won't get it.

Happy Black Tuesday!

Today is the 76th anniversary of the stock market crash that led us into the Great Depression. For better or for worse, Black Tuesday ushered in a decade of dust from the farm field to the pocket book. It also ushered in the era of Big Government in America as people began to suplant God with government.

Friday, October 28, 2005

Cheney's Fitzmas

This is the song some Democrats probably think conservatives are singing tonight (sung to the tune of Snoopy's Christmas):

The news it came out in the Plame War
The bloody Fitzgerald was flying once more
The George Bush Command ignored all of its men
And called on Cheney to do it again

Was the night before Fitzmas and Miers’ no more
When Cheney went out in search of his foe
He spied Fitzgerald and deftly they fought
With things getting tight, Cheney knew he was caught

Fitzmas bells those Fitzmas bells
Ring out from the land
Asking peace of Democrats
And good will to man

Fitzgerald had Cheney dead in his sights
He preached to the Grand Jury to put up a fight
Why he di’n’t indict, well, we’ll never know
Or was it the bills, that the D.C. bestowed

Fitzmas bells those Fitzmas bells
Ringing through from the land
Asking peace of Democrats
And good will to man

Fitzgerald made Cheney give up Libby
And forced him to kiss Ted Kennedy’s behind
Cheney was certain that this was the end
When Fitzy cried out, “Merry Fitzmas, mein friend!”

Fitzgerald then offered Libby to toast
And Cheney our hero saluted his host
And then with a bore they were both on their way
Wond’rin’ if they’d meet on some other day

(repeat chorus)

Do they know it's Fitzmas time at all?

Chirp. Chirp.

That silence you hear is the American public reacting to the indictment of Scooter Libby. May justice be done, but the Democrats are grossly overestimating how much this story resonantes with the American people.

(Headline idea gratuitously borrowed from Lakeshore Lament's "So this is Fitzmas?" post, which I found devilishly creative. Head over there for deeper analysis of 'Fitzmas'.)

Getting older

It is Owen from Boots & Sabers 31st birthday today. First off, happy birthday Owen. Secondly, it got me thinking a little, always a dangerous prospect. Before you turn 30, it isn't too hard for people to find you wise beyond your years. The expectations for 20 somethings is notoriously low. After 30, the 'bar' on the wisdom level keeps getting raised with each year. As for Owen, he's clearing that rising bar with plenty of space.

Thursday, October 27, 2005

Halloween in Madison

It is nearly here-Halloween in Madison. If you've never been on, near, or around State Street in Madison, WI when everyone is celebrating Halloween, then you've missed the greatest people watching event of all time. Halloween has been a problem for the city, though. Things have gotten rowdy, and the riot police have had their fun. So this year, the city and the university are telling everyone that if you're not from Madison, you aren't welcome. Now I ask you, what happens when you tell a spirited young adult that they can't do something? That thing becomes the most important thing for them to do. Hell, I want to go, just to be contrarian, and I'm not the rebellious, spirited type (Per Mrs. Jib, I'm not going, by the way). If I had to make a prediction, I'd say Madison just put the lid on a boiling pot of water. We'll see if I'm right this weekend.

Do you think the lovely Mrs. Jib should add her voice to Jiblog?

If so, please indicate so in the comments. If not, shaddup!

Feeling good today?

Well, are you? You should never let your highs get too high, then. Go read Peggy Noonan for your downer. A taste for you:
I'm not talking about "Plamegate." As I write no indictments have come up. I'm not talking about "Miers." I mean . . . the whole ball of wax. Everything. Cloning, nuts with nukes, epidemics; the growing knowledge that there's no such thing as homeland security; the fact that we're leaving our kids with a bill no one can pay. A sense of unreality in our courts so deep that they think they can seize grandma's house to build a strip mall; our media institutions imploding--the spectacle of a great American newspaper, the New York Times, hurtling off its own tracks, as did CBS. The fear of parents that their children will wind up disturbed, and their souls actually imperiled, by the popular culture in which we are raising them. Senators who seem owned by someone, actually owned, by an interest group or a financial entity. Great churches that have lost all sense of mission, and all authority. Do you have confidence in the CIA? The FBI? I didn't think so.
Oh yeah, there's more where that came from. Just the stuff I like to read 2 months short of 30.

I'm trying to be a more optomistic person, so in response to Noonan, I would like to say that this feeling of the wheels coming off is cyclical. I would argue that there was a similar feel in the late 70's to early 80's, especially among those of a certain age bracket. But still, she brings up some worthy fears. I think the philosopher Billy Joel said it best when he said, "the good old days weren't always good, and tomorrow ain't bad as it seems."

Blog bloodlines

Over at the BBA, Tee Bee posted on an effort by the Commissar to chart a blog family tree. I named The Corner as my blogfather, and we'll see if he'll add Sykes Writes to the list as the BBA's blogfather. To participate, or to just see who spawned who, go here.

Beware the story you don't see

There is a story making the newswires about a woman who was fired after seeing her husband off to war. Here's a snippet:
A woman who took an unpaid leave of absence from work to see her husband off to war has been fired after failing to show up for her part-time receptionist job the day following his departure.
It always pays to be careful with stories like this. Most employers have the common sense to know what a storm of public sentiment they would bring upon themselves for firing a woman for seeing her husband off to war. There is much more to this story than meets the eye. First, she was expected to show up for work the next day and she did not. Second, the employer says there are other factors involved in the discharge. In this case, I believe them. If they are guilty of anything, it is stupidity. If the woman deserved to be fired, they should have done it, but not at that time or for that reason.


Miers is withdrawn. Now it is a matter of waiting to see who he nominates for the postion. He's about to define his relationship with conservative Republicans for the rest of his term. All will be forgiven, or it is really going to get ugly.

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Halloween irony

The AP today reports on how fed up Europeans are about the American holiday of Halloween:
"It's an American custom that's got nothing to do with our culture," Kohler wrote in letters sent out to households. By midweek, the mayors of eight neighboring villages had thrown their support behind the boycott. So had local police, annoyed with the annual Oct. 31 uptick in vandalism and mischief.


And it's got purists in countries struggling to retain a sense of uniqueness in Europe's ever-enlarging melting pot grimacing like Jack o' Lanterns.

Halloween "undermines our cultural identity," complained the Rev. Giordano Frosini, a Roman Catholic theologian who serves as vicar-general in the Diocese of Pistoia near Florence, Italy.

Frosini denounced the holiday as a "manifestation of neo-paganism" and an expression of American cultural supremacy. "Pumpkins show their emptiness," he said.

Ahem. Halloween has its origins in the pagan rituals of Europe.


If I ever put out a podcast, I will be placing a $30 million bounty on my own head. I've come to the conclusion that there are many, many intelligent, everyday people out there who can write eloquently, intelligently, and humorously. On the other hand, there are about 12 people who can do likewise in the audio medium. of them.

Fine print
My karaoke recordings will not make me subject to this bounty. People enjoy them. After 10 to 12 beers.

Derb on Miers

NRO The Corner's John Derbyshire says it all:
Piling on is a thing I hate to do, and Ms. Miers is obviously a pleasant, useful, hard-working & harmless person who's been put in an impossible position by GWB's blundering. But reading her thoughts, messages & speeches is dismaying. I mean, the sheer, dreary, numbing m--e--d--i--o--c--r--i--t--y of them.

This is a person who never had an original or interesting thought in her life. Reading Miers is like suffocating under a mountain of polystyrene packing blobbles. What on earth does it say about the President that, knowing as he must have how completely and irredeemably second-rate she is, he would put her name forward?

The world, certainly in places like the Supreme Court, is a never-ending war of ideas. To ask which side of this war Ms. Miers would fight on is pointless. She doesn't know the war is under way; and if she knew, she'd probably think it could easily be brought to an end if we'd all just be nicer to each other.

This is a terrible, awful blunder by George W. Bush.

'Nuff said.

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Buy low! Sell high!

Interesting. I went to Blogshares for the first time in quite some time. Blogshares values Jiblog at $18,129.34. My sole share holder is Belle at Leaning Blue. She owns 3 shares (just 3, Belle?). Given that another independant audit of Jiblog finds this gin joint is worth over $130,000, perhaps it is time for you to get in on the ground floor before the price gets too high.

Mr. Wizard lives!

Too often we wait until death to celebrate the lives of people in our lives. I say that is wrong. So I am declaring today Mr. Wizard day. Mr. Wizard's World brought joy to dozens of geeks such as myself. Today I say to you, Mr. Wizard, thanks for the science I forgot moments after you blew up a paint can to teach it to me. Don Herbert, enjoy the remaining two hours of your day.

First down!

This is one of the pictures up at Drudge right now (see in its original here). I love this picture. I want one of him signaling a false start now.

Plame indictments tomorrow?

Such are the rumors, apparently started on the CBS Evening News and now spreading like wild fire around the lefty blogs. And get this-there is a "Mr. X". Oooo, nefarious.

NTSB report on Chippewa Falls bus accident

The NTSB held a press conference today on the Chippewa Falls Senior Hign bus accident. Here are a few of the details they released:

*One of the sets of brakes on the bus "were seriously out of adjustment."
*The bus driver was not wearing his glasses, despite having a glasses restriction on his license.
*The bus driver may also have exceeded regulations for number of consecutive hours he was awake.

This information does not assign blame to the bus driver or anyone else. These are just possible contributing factors. The NTSB should be finishing up its investigation on Thursday

Bird flu: Don't panic, unless media tells you to

Slowly but surely, responsible individuals in governments and NGO's are encouraging people to remain calm about the bird flu. WHO's Margaret Chan, Canadian officials, and I believe a European official have all told people to remain calm because this is still a difficult virus to catch. Good common sense advice.

Too bad the media isn't listening. Take this AP article which is about urging calm. The lede is a winner:
People should not panic about a possible influenza pandemic, despite the steady spread of a deadly strain of avian flu among humans, leading health officials and politicians said on Tuesday.
Nice job of editorializing the lede. The fact is it is misleading. Yes, 60 people have died in Asia, but human infections have yet to follow the migrating bird infections. And this article isn't the only example. Nearly every story about the spread of the bird flu fails to mention in a timely manner that it is only steadily spreading among birds, not humans.

Look, panic is a real possibility in the event the bird flu virus mutates and becomes easily transmitted between people. The media, in an effort to attract eyes, is being irresponsible and will bear much culpability if this were to occur. But they will blame everyone they can before their responsibility for panic becomes readily apparent.

In honor of Taco Wallace

The Green Bay Packers today picked up wide receiver Taco Wallace. This is surely a sign of the demise of the Packers, but just the same, in honor of Taco, I give you the USA Today's baseball All-Food Team.

Emailing The Corner

Before I started blogging, I used to occasionally email the writers at The Corner. They were all very nice, and I got responses from everyone but K.Lo. I think Jonah Goldberg even reproduced one of my emails, once. But since I started my own blog, I don't think I've emailed them once. I greedily keep anything good that I have to say for this site. I know their email in boxes creak with the volume of email that they get, and I'd advise them to encourage their emailers to start their own blogs.

Eh, maybe not. Then they'll probably double their volume with people looking for links to their blogs.

The Conservative Divide

I am more and more convinced that the division we are seeing in the Republican party is one between faith based conservatives whose conservatism is guided by their faith, and conservatives whose conservatism is based on philosophy. This Hugh Hewitt post has firmed up my position on this.

I don't really like making this generalization, because their are so many whose conservatism is affected by both faith and philosophy, and those individuals can be found on both sides of this fence. But in general, those who I'd define as faith-based conservatives, Miers opposition to abortion and evangelical faith are enough justification for her nomination. On the philosophical side, opponents seem to be saying, "that isn't enough, Miers needs to be a reliable constructionist in a host of topics."

Unfortunately, quality communication between the two sides has really broken down over this nomination, and while the divide will heal, I'm not sure it will be in the near future.

Recruiting new citizens

Sania Mirza is a young female tennis player who is steadily rising in the WTA rankings. Mirza, an Indian Muslim, is creating a controversy amongst more radical Islamic groups in India:
Her rise has not gone unnoticed by radical Islamic clerics in largely Hindu but officially secular India, home to some 130 million Muslims.

Mirza was given extra security last month after an Islamic cleric denounced her for wearing short skirts and sleeveless shirts on court and threatened to stop her playing in a WTA event in Kolkata.

America was built on the talents of people who came here because they were persecuted, misunderstood, or repressed in their native lands. There may be no group of people alive today who are being more persecuted and repressed than women who belong to certain Islamic sects. These women live a life that is slavery in all but name. A Sania Mirza is able to escape because of circumstance. But for every Mirza, there are probably hundreds of talented women who are having their spirit extinguished. There is no easy answer for the question, "how do we unlock their chains," but I don't even see anyone asking the question. Repressed women should be our natural ally in our struggle against radical Islam, but they are ignored by feminists as well as diplomats.

Rest in Peace, Rosa Parks

Rosa Parks, may your brave soul rest in eternal peace.

Feeding frenzy

Expect a feeding frenzy today as the New York Times is reporting the Scooter Libby first learned of Plame from Vice President Cheney. If there is any problem with that, it will be Libby's. If it contradicts any of his grand jury testimony, Patrick Fitzgerald will probably be looking at some sort of charges for the false testimony. However, because Cheney is involved in this string, the moonbats are going to go nuts.

Monday, October 24, 2005

Injuring the King

Does anybody else watch those Burger King commercials, the ones with "the King" scoring touchdowns, and secretly wish Chuck Cecil would come out of nowhere, leading with his helmet, and relieve the King of his melon?

Anti-Miers coalitions

A couple of anti-Miers coalitions have sprung up, and Better Justice. I applaud them, but I don't think it is necessary. This nomination has been listing in the water for a while now. It is just a matter of time before it goes under.

And actually, I'm leaning towards giving her a hearing. It would be risky, but I don't see any way Democrats could vote for her, given her position on abortion. A few defections on the Republican side, and the Democrats get to block a Supreme Court nominee. And I think it would leave them less able to block the next one without appearing blatantly obstructionist.

Old timer's game

The Packers are a decimated team right now. So I say it is time for them to have a little fun. I say next weekend, they bring in James Lofton and John Jefferson to catch Brett Favre passes, and Eddie Lee Ivory to take the hand offs. While they're at it, they might as well bring Larry McCarren down out of the booth to play a little center. And who wouldn't want to see Jan Stenrud kick a 36 yard field goal?

Beware the day after tomorrow

Ugh. If you thought the apocalyptic environmental news has been bad lately, just wait until the day after tomorrow. It looks like a strong Nor'easter is in the making for the epicenter of American news. Northeast U.S., prepare yourself for wind, rain, and snow. The rest of the country, prepare yourself for the onslaught of self pitying news reports about weather and the environment.

Psst! You. Come here

Shh! Don't tell anyone that I told you this, but there is a new post up at Dennis York's blog. It is on the topic that has had me sick to my stomach for the last 16 hours-the Packers.

Sunday, October 23, 2005

Huffington Post Backstage

This post is a bleg. Has anyone ever heard of "Backstage" at the Huffington Post? I have not, but I had one solitary visitor from there last night. It is password protected, so I'd have to guess that there is some sort of private forum for the HuffPo bloggers behind the wall, but I'd be interested in knowing for sure.

Saturday, October 22, 2005


I hate myself for loving the musical Chicago as much as I do.

Pop! Six! Squish! Uh uh! Cicero! Lipschitz!

7th sign of the apocalypse-Larry Flynt, Republican

Don't get too excited. Yet. Newsmax reports that Hillary Clinton has turned down a campaign donation from Hustler publisher Larry Flint. At the rejection, Flynt had this to say:
"I've been a lifelong Democrat," the widely acclaimed smut peddlar said. "But I guess I'm going to have to find a third party or maybe some Republicans."
The day I see Larry Flynt (R) is the day I start work on my bunker.

Everyone's entitled to a clunker now and then

That is my official position on President Bush after the Miers nomination. The President really has been stellar in his nominations for the federal courts. Until this one. I become more and more convinced each day that this nomination is doomed. Once it fails, it'll be forgiven and forgotten as long as the President doesn't make this personal and do something silly with his second chance at this nomination.

Sheboygan to build space port; Elmwood pissed

I've seen Owen and Kevin discuss the possibility of a spaceport in Sheboygan, and now I need to chime in. I know that the plans are a serious effort to try to get in on the ground floor of private space travel, but I still can't help but chuckle. Elmwood, Wisconsin has wanted to build a UFO landing site for years now. Boy, are they going to be pissed about the intra-state competition.

"I oppose the Miers nomination"

If you come here with any frequency at all, you know this already. NZ Bear is is recording bloggers' positions on the nomination, so I say emphatically that I oppose the Miers nomination. I've opposed this nomination since day one, but I've tried to remain intellectually open to the arguments of the nomination's supporters. Unfortunately, none of those arguments have convinced me that this wasn't a terrible choice.

Blog opportunity lost

One of my great pleasures in blogging is looking into the future and getting it right. I won't be so vain as to list the times of done that, but I've a had a few. I'm kicking myself today, though. On Friday I was sifting through some papers and found something I wrote earlier this year. In it, I chastized the American auto industry for trying to forestall the inevitable drop in demand through discounting. By pulling forward demand, all they were accomplishing was a more painful hit when they finally pulled as much demand forward as they could. Instead of having a disappointing year in 2001 or 2002, they are now faced with a crisis. Of course, saying this now isn't all that insightful. Had I said it then, when I wrote it down, it would have been. Drat.

New Jiblog policy

I am terrible for typos. I always have been. I drove my history profs crazy with my papers. Solid analysis, frequent typos. When I get going on a thought, my fingers become an extension of my brain, and I don't stop to correct errors along the way. Because of that, a lot of errors slip through. I need to be better about that. From this point forward, if you catch a typo here at Jiblog, you are expected to give me 30 lashes with a wet noodle. I will then give you a virtual Leinie's as a reward.

LED's: Light bulb of tomorrow

I work in an industry where LED's are becoming a pretty big thing. In fact, LED's are slowly becoming more common in our everyday life, and most people aren't even aware of it. From traffic lights to tailights to flashlights, LED lights are becoming common. Now, an accident in a lab may lead to even greater use of LED's:
When you shine a light on quantum dots or apply electricity to them, they react by producing their own light, normally a bright, vibrant color. But when Bowers shined a laser on his batch of dots, something unexpected happened.

"I was surprised when a white glow covered the table," Bowers said. "The quantum dots were supposed to emit blue light, but instead they were giving off a beautiful white glow."

Then Bowers and another student got the idea to stir the dots into polyurethane and coat a blue LED light bulb with the mix. The lumpy bulb wasn't pretty, but it produced white light similar to a regular light bulb.

The new device gives off a warm, yellowish-white light that shines twice as bright and lasts 50 times longer than the standard 60 watt light bulb.

This invention is probably years from seeing commercial use, but it could render the light bulb of today obsolete by the time our grandkids or great grandkids (depending on your current stage in life) arrive on the scene.

Caution: Blog geek question ahead

Okay, fellow geek bloggers, I have a question for you. Have you ever considered paying to advertise your site? I've been building traffic for this site slowly but surely, and I'm content to do it this way because I think my base readership will eventually be stronger because of it. Just the same, I occasionally see Right Wing News announce that he has available ad space, and his price is reasonable. I've always been tempted to buy an ad from him, just for s&g's to see what it would do for me traffic wise. The only thing that has held me back is that the money would have to come out of a fund I have set up to buy the camera I've been coveting for quite a while. I'm getting close to buying that camera, and I don't want to set myself back unless the ad would really create results.

I know we all look to bring in traffic in variety of ways, but I see few blogs willing to put their money where their keyboards are and actually advertise their sites. Any thoughts?

Preferred mugshots for Tom DeLay

On Friday, Wendy at Boots and Sabers noted that she'd have preferred that Tom DeLay go with this look for his mugshot. Not bad, but I'm more of a fan of this mugshot of a young WWE wrestler Booker T.

The Siege

I'm watching The Siege on the History Channel right now, and it is amazing how very wrong this movie got it, yet how dead on it is in some aspects. It is also disturbing to judge a movie like this on events that followed it.

Additional notes
*It is amazing how much this movie underestimated the intestinal fortitude of the American people in the face of terror.
*It is eery to see the twin towers in a skyline shot during a movie about terrorism in NYC.
*Did you know Arianna Huffington makes a brief appearance in the movie? In her shot, she's on a talk show arguing in favor of martial law following terrorist attacks. Think she'd take that position now that she's become a Democrat?
*In 1998, Hollywood was still willing to portray Islamic terrorists. Now that we've taken a grievous hit from Islamic terrorists, Hollywood avoids them like the plague.
*Things the movie got right: Terrorists using student Visas, their willingness to attack schools, and the need to put pressure on every source available to get the intel needed.

Friday, October 21, 2005

Sweet merciful God! Jiblog worth $130,973.28?

Hey, anybody out there nicknamed Jib wanna buy a blog? I can always start another one.

My blog is worth $130,973.28.
How much is your blog worth?

HT: Ex-Donkey Blog


I stand by my guesstimate. The oil bubble will burst in December.

Oil dips below $60.

Voting in Wisconsin

This post is for my non-Wisconsin readers. Wisconsin has a very pourus election system that is ripe for wide scale fraud. To get a feel for the problem, check out this post that I made at the Badger Blog Alliance. It was simple little thing I jotted out after voting the other day, but based on the reception it got, I guess it encapsulates our situation.

DeLay gets last laugh

Power Line has Tom DeLay's mug shot up, and he has a great big grin on his face. The obvious point that everyone is making is that DeLay just took a campaign ad away from the Democrats. I'd like to make a less obvious point. By smiling, DeLay is going to get under the skin of every opponent he's ever had. I love it.

Today's judicial lesson: Judges don't vote

Since word has seeped out that Miers would probably decide to overturn Roe v. Wade, there have been many, many people saying that she'd "vote" to overturn Roe. That is incorrect. Judges do not vote. They come to decisions. They do not vote. "Vote" is a term of convenience for some, and the product of ignorance for others. Please, everyone, stop saying a judge would "vote" one way or another.

Miers. What's left to say?

Harriet Miers is getting to be a tough topic to blog on. What else is there to say that hasn't already been said? The entire nomination is on shaky ground, and we still have weeks to wait before the hearings begin. What I'd really like to see is a few enterprising conservatives make a lot of hay about the fact that Miers would probably side with overturning Roe. Not just some hay, A LOT OF HAY. This nomination has been a lose-lose for Republicans so far. Let's make it a lose-lose for Democrats, too! Miers, minus Roe, is probably a no brainer for Democrats. She's the best they'll probably ever get. Miers, plus Roe, is a time bomb. What do they do? Do they vote yes for the best they can get, or do they vote no in order to protect abortion, the pillar of their political strategy? As a conservative and a Republican, I'd like to share this headache with my friends across the aisle. How's that for bi-partisanship? Plus it would be a great topic to write about.

Thursday, October 20, 2005

GWB's philosophy

Do we conservatives have false expectations for President Bush? We expect him to pay a certain deference to conservative ideals because he has loosely aligned himself with conservatism. Most of us have come by our conservatism by way of the conservative ideas of others, be it our family, National Review, Reagan, or some of the giants of conservative philosophy. But for the President, it is his evangelical faith that guides him, not conservatism. He is a conservative in as much as his personal faith dove tails with conservative values. Therefore, he may view entitlements, general government spending, and the courts in an entirely different way than rock-ribbed conservatives do. I'm beginning to wonder how much of the current intra-party divisiveness has to do with this possible misunderstanding of the President's personal philosophies.

Mistakes are in the eye of the beholder

Peggy Noonan writes in today's Opinion Journal that the President should treat his current political crisis as he treated his family crisis from 20 years ago. One part of her column really stuck out for me, though:
The president is like anyone else: He can look back at the last few years and see that he's made mistakes. Who hasn't? Mistakes of judgment, mistakes of approach. Some of the mistakes in the president's case would have grown out of human miscalculation. Others perhaps grew out of vanity, of a largeness of ego. It's not hard to make a list. There were mistakes of judgment, such as Social Security. Mr. Bush decided to reform the bedrock entitlement of modern America in even though, while most thought reform important, few thought it urgent. Why would he do this? And in the middle of a war and an uncertain economic climate? I'm George Bush and I only do big things!
Her thesis is that the President, in the interest of saving his political family, needs to take a deep, hard look inside and question his mistakes and adjust. But that assumes that the President does or would view Noonan's examples as mistakes. He likely doesn't, which means Nonan's entire argument is for naught. Sometimes mistakes are in the eye of the beholder, and in this case, I don't think that beholder is the President.

Al Qaeda's branding problems

Tech Central Station takes a look at al Qaeda's weakening control over its brand. Interesting piece.

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Heart wrenching

The Eau Claire Leader Telegram has some heart wrenching first-person stories from bus 1 in the Chi-Hi band accident.

Teen Saxophonist displays courage after crash, Part 1
Teen Saxophonist displays courage after crash, Part 2
Rude Awakening

The stories put the reader in bus 1, and they highlight two of the people who rose to the occasion, Todd Bowe and Kyra Sommerfeld.

A school referendum fails

The school referendum I mentioned a couple of posts below failed by an approximate 60%-40% split. I'm impressed by that and the fact that 36% of registered voters showed up to vote on this issue. Compared to Waukesha County's 20% turnout for the County Executive race, 36 % is astonomical.

Question for Miers supporters

I have a question for the supporters of Harriet Miers. This question isn't for opponents or those who are waiting until the hearings to make up their minds, just the supporters. On what do you base your support of her nomination? I hear three things. One, trust in the President. Two, she's probably opposed to abortion in her personal life. Three, we should maintain a common front with the President against the Democrats. What other reasons do you have? Because those three aren't doing it for me. The comments are open. Thanks.

Albright to appear on Gilmore Girls

This isn't a post opposing Albright. I'm sure she'll do fine in her role. No, it is a post opposing the intermixing of Hollywood and politics. Here is a quote from the AP article on Albright's appearance:
"If you think she's seems brilliant and sassy strutting around the Middle East, you should try talking to her in person," Executive Producer Amy Sherman-Palladino said in a statement. "We are very honored, very lucky, and soooo not worthy."
Soooo not worthy? What, did the closet Republicans on the set start waving their hands in front of their face, chanting "doodlie-doo, doodlie-doo, doodlie-doo"?

Party on, Wayne. Party on, Madelline.

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Chertoff to crack down on illegal immigration

Department of Homeland Security chief Michael Chertoff has come out in favor of a hard line approach to illegal aliens:
Our goal at DHS (Homeland Security) is to completely eliminate the 'catch and release' enforcement problem, and return every single illegal entrant, no exceptions.

"It should be possible to achieve significant and measurable progress to this end in less than a year," Chertoff told a Senate hearing.
Oh, Mr. Chertoff. I bet you tell all of the disgruntled conservative opponents of illegal immigration that.

Truck jackknifed one or two minutes before crash

Tucked away in an Eau Claire Leader Telegram article on the Chi-Hi bus accident is this paragraph:
Kozlowski’s truck overturned one or two minutes before the bus carrying students, staff members and chaperones in the Chippewa Falls Senior High School Fighting Cardinals marching band crashed into it, accident investigators said.
That is a little bit disturbing. I'm very familiar with that stretch of road. It is very, very dark on moonless nights and a little hilly with some sweeping curves, but no real blind spots. As long as the semi driver still had his lights on the truck (the trailer would have been difficult or impossible to see tipped on its side), the bus driver should have been able to see something was wrong ahead of him and been able to at least slow and greatly minimize the impact. If the lights were off on the truck, and the driver turned them off, then he is in a lot of trouble. If the truck lost all lighting due to the jackknife, then the logistics of this whole thing makes more sense.

I hesitate to even bring this up because the reports on how this accident played out are still so dicey, but there is something odd about that one or two minutes in between events.

Is there such a thing as an honest referendum?

I'm sure there is, but the one in my community today wasn't it. I discussed this referendum a little bit a couple of weeks ago. To sum it up, the school district wants to exceed spending caps by $2.1 million in order to upgrade the HVAC system at a couple of schools, to replace old computers, and to address the "structural deficit." Really, they should have split these questions up, but they opted to lump all three together in the hopes that it would improve the likelihood they'd get everything they wanted. I didn't like that, but I went in to vote yes, anyway. Then I read the referendum. One thing was noticeably absent-and end date for this permission to exceed spending caps. Voters in my community were essentially voting to allow the school district to exceed spending caps forever. One thing was almost unnoticeably there-a line which allowed the money to be spent on operating costs, as well. I was left feeling like the school district was trying to pull a quick one on the community. Although I support two-thirds of the referendum, I couldn't give the district carte blanche to spend the additional money in perpetuity, especially considering how it seemed they were trying to slip this by.

I think voters are becoming more and more savvy, and I hope other voters in town noticed the same things I did and voted no. If the school district wants to come back and ask voters for the expenditures separately, and set end dates on the spending, I'll gladly reconsider. But if they feel they need to put these slippery referendums in front of us, I'll vote no every time.

Welcome Boots & Sabers readers. I wish I had the text of the referendum to show to you all, but I've been unable to find it. Still working on that, though.

Update 2
This referendum failed. 60% voted no, 40% voted yes.

Baltimore terror threat

News is coming over the radio that the tunnels under the Baltimore Harbor have been shut down due to a terror threat. It sounds like it was a called in threat, which screams hoax.

AP story here.

Miers needs perfection

Support her or not, Harriet Miers will have to be nearly perfect in her confirmation hearings.  Politicians love expediency.  This nomination has been beset by enough headaches that if she slips up once, the Senate will take the easiest path and vote against her.


Danica Patrick Alert!

Long time readers of this site know that I went through a period in May when it seemed like every third post was about Danica Patrick. Well, she's back! After a decent rookie year, Patrick's season ended this weekend when she got tangled up with Jaques Lazier. But that's were it gets interesting.

As they rode in the ambulance, they began to argue about the wreck. And that's when Patrick allegedly socked Lazier in the face. Heh. Maybe there is a future for Patrick in NASCAR, after all. Jaques Lazier today, Robby Gordon tomorrow.

Storm track scare or blessing?

Right now, the headline at Drudge is "Storm Track Scare." The track, which can be seen here for now, takes the storm into the southwest Florida coast. Now I wouldn't wish a hurricane on anyone, but as battered as the Gulf Coast is right now, isn't a track that takes the storm quickly in and out of the Gulf over southern Florida a bit of a blessing? One would think this path would minimize the strength of the storm and spare the already battered areas.

Monday, October 17, 2005

The real vast right wing conspiracy

It's called a rope-a-dope. Take your beating on the ropes early, tire the other guy out, then pummel him silly. America loves an underdog, Democrats. And the Republicans, if they get their act together, will be stealing the underdog title from you in '06.

Quick question for Wisconsin blog readers.

Am I the only one who has a heck of a time trying to pull up Jessica McBride's site? If it doesn't take forever for it to load, then it just hangs up completely for me. I'm curious to see if it is a problem unique to my machines or if others have trouble, too.


Well, ya gotta give Harriet Miers this-the woman can schmooze. She could use some lessons in subtlety, but she made up for it by going extra heavy on the saccharine.

Bird flu being overhyped?

Well, that's what Instapundit is asking. Finally. That's what this little blog has been saying for a while now. And emailing once in a while. I'll say this, the emailer does have oodles of credibility. I'm just schmoe blogger, so I'm glad to see an academic say it as well, and probably better than I have.

Party splitting, an update

A few posts below I asked everyone which party they thought was susceptible to a split. The answer was the Democratic Party. And guess what? Rush Limbaugh agrees with the commentors.
The Miers nomination shows the strength of the conservative movement. This is no "crackup." It's a crackdown. We conservatives are unified in our objectives. And we are organized to advance them. The purpose of the Miers debate is to ensure that we are doing the very best we can to move the nation in the right direction. And when all is said and done, we will be even stronger and more focused on our agenda and defeating those who obstruct it, just in time for 2006 and 2008. Lest anyone forget, for several years before the 1980 election, we had knockdown battles within the GOP. The result: Ronald Reagan won two massive landslides.

The real crackup has already occurred--on the left! The Democratic Party has been hijacked by 1960s retreads like Howard Dean; billionaire eccentrics like George Soros; and leftwing computer geeks like It nominated John Kerry, a notorious Vietnam-era antiwar activist, as its presidential standard-bearer. Its major spokesmen are old extremists like Ted Kennedy and new propagandists like Michael Moore. Its great presidential hope is one of the most divisive figures in U.S. politics, Hillary Clinton. And its favorite son is an impeached, disbarred, held-in-contempt ex-president, Bill Clinton.
I'm coming around, everyone. But I still remain concerned.

Sunday, October 16, 2005

Sad losses for Chippewa Falls

TMJ4 has announced the names of those lost in the Chi-Hi marching band bus crash near Osseo, WI. The names are as follows:
Douglas Greenhalgh, 48
Therese Greenhalgh, 51
Morgan Greenhalgh, 11
Brandon Atherton, 24
Paul Rasmus, 78
Douglas Greenhalgh was the shool's band director, Therese his wife, and Morgan their granddaughter. Brandon Atherton was a student teacher, and Paul Rasmus was the bus driver.

I went to Chi-Hi, and I met Greenhalgh several times, but I never had him as an instructor. I remember Greenhalgh being much beloved by his students, who often referred to him with the affectionate nickname "Gee". His bands were always excellent, and they were an asset to the community. The credit for that belongs to him. He will be missed by the city, the school, and the students.

This will be especially difficult for the Greenhalgh family. They should be in all of our prayers. It will also be difficult for current students and staff, and also all of Greenhalgh's past students.

Please also include the Rasmus and Atherton families in your prayers.

Other sources.
Chippewa Herald
Greenhalgh's Life Struck an Upbeat Note
Fatal crash kills school band director
Tragedy hits students so close to home
Word of crash spreads, community unites

Eau Claire Leader Telegram
Deadly accident shocks Chi-Hi (part 1)
Deadly accident shocks Chi-Hi (part 2)
Most students were sleeping at time of crash

The Victims
School Grieves
Driver had license suspended in April

Hours of work to free kids added to rescuers' horror

Pioneer Press
Nearly home, a nightmare

Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
Bus hits overturned semi

(No) More cowbell

I am finally removing the "More Cowbell" link to the left. It was up there because I used to get a lot of Google image searches for that picture because I had once linked to it, and for whatever reason, Google sent them here for it. Now that the picture is gone, I don't have "more cowbell" searchers dead ending at Jiblog anymore. But it you just can't get enough of more cowbell, I offer you this series of pictures.


Ex-Donkey is an excellent blog that I first found after he blogrolled me. He'll be going up on my blogroll the next time I update my template. For now, check him out here.

Oh, and Gary, if I ever find myself in your neck of the woods for a Packer-Giants game, we're going to get together to watch it. At a Packer bar.

J.M.A: Judy Miller Anonymous

My chapter of Miers Anonymous was a miserable failure, but I think I'm on to something. With my experience from M.A., I'm going to go to Hollywood and start J.M.A.-Judy Miller Anonymous. Hollywood limosine liberals eat this self help stuff up, and there certainly is an addiction among their ranks to Judy Miller. You just have to read the HuffPo to see that.

When I write my book, I'll remember all of you in the prologue.

Carnival of the Cats

As I was filling out the form for last week's Carnival of the Badger, I discovered that there was a Carnival of the Cats. So the beer drinking, business page reading Delilah Cat gets her 15 minutes of fame tonight via the Carnival of the Cats, hosted by Where Dolphins Play. Check it out to see more pictures of cats than you can shake a can of tuna at.

Condolences to Chippewa Falls

I'd like to offer my personal condolences to my home town of Chippewa Falls. As the city's high school marching band returned from the state band tournament in Whitewater last night, the lead bus of a four bus caravan was hit by a semi on I-94 near Osseo, WI. At least 6 have died, and scores are injured.

Chippewa Falls is a small city of almost 13,000, and this is going to be a big tragedy for the community. Please keep them in your thoughts and prayers.

I've put more on the actual accident over at the Badger Blog Alliance, and updates will occur there.

Saturday, October 15, 2005

Diane Sykes for SCOTUS

There's been a quiet buzz around the Badgersphere about Diane Sykes' prospects in the SCOTUS nomination process. I've avoided it because I know little about her and thus didn't want to be a homer. Jessica McBride has some information that is getting me excited about the possibility of a Sykes nomination:

A Diane Sykes candidacy for the SCOTUS is far more viable than the
mainstream media have reported. I received this email from a Conservative

A friend of ours (NAME REMOVED BY ME) was in Washington the last
week of September lobbying with REMOVED BY ME. He said when they were in
(Congressman Jim) Sensenbrenner's office, Sensenbrenner on his own brought up
the topic of SCOTUS. Bear in mind this was before Miers was announced as
nominee. Sensenbrenner told the small group assembled that Bush's next nominee
would NOT be confirmed and that Bush's next nominee (after that) was going to be
Diane Sykes!

McBride goes on to list a series of points that show how politically advantageous a Sykes nomination could be. If the Miers nomination fails, and the President followed it up with a Sykes nomination, I would gladly forgive and forget the last few weeks the President has put us through.

Iraq vote is complete

Today's Iraqi vote on their constitution is over and the polls have closed. Let's hope and pray for a wise result that moves that country foward.

My Miers break

I went a few days without commenting on Harriet Miers' nomination to the Supreme Court. During that time, I avoided reading much on the topic, instead skimming an article here and a post there. To a certain extent, I unplugged from the Miers news cycle. Here's where my self imposed "cool down" period got me.

I'm no longer angry. I'm now disappointed and squeamish. My gut is screaming at me that, contrary to conventional wisdom, Miers is going to be to the left of Sandra Day O'Conner. My political sense tells me that this choice has caused a deep cut on the Republican party that will heal, but for which a hard scar will remain. Former easy allies within the party faithful will now have standing distrust of one another. Some blame the supporters. Some blame the opponents. Some blame Bush. It doesn't matter anymore who you blame. This choice has brought us to this reality. The question is where will our President lead us from here? So I wait. To me, George W. Bush's legacy depends partly on whether he can lead a government capable of keeping us safe from terrorists. The other part of his legacy depends upon where he tries to lead us domestically from this point right now. I watch, willing to be led, but without any confidence that I will be.

The President may be disappointed in the perceived disloyalty of messages like this (not that he has any clue of my existence), but it is his job to inspire those like me, to instill our confidence in him, and to lead us. It is not my job to follow blindly. I sit and wait, Mr. President. Where now?

Viking names are named

The Star Tribune is reporting the names of the Minnesota Vikings believed to be on the Lake Minnetonka "Love Boats." Two names on that list: Daunte Culpepper and Darren Sharper. That in and of itself means nothing. Reports all along have indicated that some players behaved in a lewd nature, while others apologized for their teammates. We have know idea which camp those two players were in. Regardless, their names will still be tarnished by either association or action.

Question: Which party is more susceptible to splitting?

I would really like to see a discussion of this in the comments. Before the Miers nomination (dammit, I'm off the wagon), I had said that I thought the Republican party was more susceptible to a schism than the Democratic party. Since then, we've seen a fractious couple of weeks in the Republican party. I've personally taken criticism from my left, the middle and from my right, something I didn't think possible. What does everyone think? Is the left or right more susceptible to splits?

A message to the single ladies

Dear single ladies,

Let me begin this message by removing any awkwardness. I'm married, and I ain't interested in ya. Good, now that we have that out of the way, we can talk.

Ladies, I'm sure that the search for the right man is a difficult one. Guys can be obnoxious, testosterone filled pick up line machines. I know that when you go out for a simple night with the girls, you have to put up with a lot of unwanted attention from guys who are looking for one thing. And when you are out on the town actually looking for guys, it is even worse. So I sympathize with your various tricks to throw these blood hounds of your tracks. You need to do things like give out fake numbers, but we really need to discuss your etiquette.

Fake numbers is the tactic I'd like to discuss with you. Giving them out is a necessity at times, I realize this. The only way you are going to get rid of some drunk, over-earnest frat boys is to give them a fake number. But you cannot keep giving out the same fake number over and over. And for the love of God, do not toy with these schlubs by promising them certain 'favors' if they call it. Let me tell you why.

One of your sisters in singlehood, a young woman whose name is apparently Jackie, likes to give out a fake number to guys that she wants to get rid of. She also promises them 'favors' if they call her. The problem is, Jackie always gives out the same fake number-my cell number. The first time I got a call in the middle of the night from some drunk loser looking for any easy piece from Jackie, it was kind of funny. But it got annoying quick. Frankly, I'm tired of getting calls from Jackie's drunken schlubs on Friday and Saturday nights. I'm tired of the weepy drunks who think there really is a Jackie here. I'm tired of the angry drunks who think I got with Jackie and now I'm trying to shield her from them. And I'm really tired of the guys who feel the need to tell me what obscene thing she promised them if they called. And the worst part about it is this is my cell number, so I have to pay to listen to this crap in the middle of the night.

Ladies, I know it is tough wading through a sea of jackasses trying to find a knight in shining armor. But you don't need saddle some other soul you've never met with it all. Spread the love and change your fake number up. Give a lot of people a chuckle. I've had my chuckle. Frankly, if I ever find out who Jackie is, her number is going to be on the restroom wall of every truck stop between here and New York City. Ladies, don't be a Jackie.


Friday, October 14, 2005


If you are a Packer fan and you've not yet heard about the Minnesota Viking cruise ship controversy, you must go to the Star Tribune and read this article now. I'll wait for you to come back.

Okay, back? It is looking like no felony level crimes were committed, just misdameaners like prostitution, drug use, and possibly harrasment, although no charges have been filed yet. Given that no one was hurt, how can you not sit back and enjoy this story as a Packer fan? Finally, the Vikings give us a team that can make up their own punchlines. For example: How bad are the Vikings? So bad they can only score in their bye week, or How do you convert a tight end into a wide receiver? I dunno, ask Fred Smoot.

This must sting Viking fans to no end. So as the Packers swirl down the drain, it's nice to see the Vikings will beat us there.

"Staged" Bush teleconference a non-story

I am now convinced the Republican rift will heal and we'll be back to politics as usual pretty quickly. Why? Because anti-Bush stupidity has returned to the media.

The AP is reporting that a Bush teleconference billed as a talk with the troops was "staged":
It was billed as a conversation with U.S. troops, but the questions President Bush asked on a teleconference call Thursday were choreographed to match his goals for the war in Iraq and Saturday's vote on a new Iraqi constitution.
Okay, where to start. First, let's look at the word "staged." The perception that this word gives is that the soldiers had their answers scripted for them and were given performance cues. Not only is their no evidence of this, there is no claim of it. The use of staged in the headline is either an act of sensationalism, or it is just plain sloppy journalism by use of inaccurate words.

Next, let's look at the claim the questions were choreographed. What the hell does that mean, exactly? Are questions only choreographed when President Bush has a media event designed to get the message of the administration out to the wider public? What about when a President Clinton would ask pointed questions of a single mother when trying to get, say, his government health care message out? Every President uses these events to get a message out, and every President uses questions and carefully chosen, sympathetic audiences in order to get their message across. The advantage for an anti-Bush reporter in using "choreographed" is they can make the event look fake and contrived. I'm fine with that, as long as they shoot down all events of these types by politicians of all party affiliations. And they can start by calling Bill Clinton's patented lip bite "choreographed."

If you read the article a little further, you see that the author tries to make this teleconference look like a movie set even more by pointing out that Deputy Assistant Defense Secretary Alison Barber asked that two bottles be removed from the shot, gave a quick pep talk to the soldiers, and arranged in what order people would answer questions. I'll bet you a dollar that when the networks had their "common man" panels after the Presidential debates last year, they prepped the panel in much the same way. Does that mean that their panels were just contrived events, or does that mean they are trying to make the segment go as smoothly as possible with the fewest possible distractions for the viewers.

The left wonders how the right can see the media as liberal. I give you exhibit 'A'.

Just two additional items of note.

One of the soldiers involved in Bush's teleconference had a blog. He discusses it here.

If staged is what you want, NBC shows how it's really done.

Thursday, October 13, 2005

Jiblog Word of the Day

Today's (10/14) word is compunction. Use it without compunction, as I have just done.

New Jib Jab on Leno

Jib Jab used to be funny. Their latest, which was debuted on the Tonight Show this evening, was little more than a political jab at Wal-Mart. I defy anyone to tell me they laughed at that. It used to be they were political and funny. That skit was just political. Too bad.

Madonna on television

Madonna (am I supposed to call her Esther?) on T.V.:
"TV is trash. I was raised without it. We don't have magazines or newspapers in the house either."
This from the woman who has done as much to trash up television as anyone. I'm not sure whether I should roll my eyes or applaud her for responsible parenting. Perhaps I'll do both.

Madame Butterfly...

...comes recommended from Mrs. Jib and I. We saw it last night, and enjoyed it greatly. And I'm not much for opera.

Interesting note, though. It was interesting to see that Europe already viewed Americans as louts early in the twentieth century. If you are looking for an opera with an idyllic American hero, this ain't the one for you.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

M.A., meeting 2

Hi, my name is Jib, and I've been dry for almost two days (mentioning the unmentionable via a block quote doesn't count, does it?). But for those of you thirsting for it, Sean is unabashedly off the wagon.

Something else you didn't know about me

I had a crush on Martika when I was 13.

(Why do a top ten of these? It's so much more fun to mix them in once in a while.)

Where's Jib?

Around. Inter-ideological warfare is an exhausting trade to ply.

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

Recalling Mayor Dave over the Madison smoking ban?

Well, it sounds like the process has begun. I have a very good friend who is going to be disappointed that he won't be able to vote against Mayor Dave. Not too long ago, he could have, but he moved out of Madison because he no longer felt it to be a hospitable or affordable place to live. That in itself is a lesson on Madison-mid to upper twenty year old males who make decent money would rather start their families in other communities. That's bad demographic news for your city's long term health, Mayor Dave. But it just may save your hide in the short term.

(Cross posted at the BBA)

Gang of 14 gives approval to nomination

Am I the only one out there disturbed by the fact that the "Gang of 14" has, through a shrewd political maneuver, given themselves an almost extra-constitutional say over what Supreme Court nominees do and do not deserve an up or down vote?
The Gang of 14’s centrist Democratic and Republican senators met and gave preliminary approval yesterday to Harriet Miers as President Bush’s nominee to replace Justice Sandra Day O’Connor on the Supreme Court.
Nothing is codified on this, so it is not unconstitutional or illegal, but it is disturbing that they managed to accumulate this power above and beyond what the Constitution and Senate rules normally gives senators in the process. Legally.

Conservatives, Catholics, and Evangelicals, Oh Boy!

Sigh. All this talk of Conservative Catholics and Evangelicals. When are the stodgy old Lutheran Protestants going to have their day in this party? I demand to feel a part of the Republican party!

(Outh. Kin thumbone hewp me git ma tounge outta my cheek?)

Odd college incidents

Hopefully our universities are not the next hot bed of terrorists, but there are a lot of odd things going on around campuses lately. See Michelle Malkin for more.

Jeff Wagner for Senate!

Heh. Just kidding. Sort of.

Editor's note

I've recently been made aware that this site takes forever to load with a dial up connection. I'm working at figuring out why that is and remedying the situation. Also, I noticed that for an hour this morning there was zero traffic to the site. Now, Jiblog is not a traffic monster, but an hour without a hit during midday is unusual. If you had any troubles loading the site between 10:46 and 11:46, please let me know. If the site wasn't loading, I'd like to figure out why that occured, as well.


Things just aren't getting any better for the Kashmir earthquake victims:
Heavy rain and hailstorms in northern Pakistan further hampered efforts on Tuesday, grounding rescue flights and a planned aerial tour of stricken areas by the prime minister.
Death tolls from this past year's disasters do not compare to the death tolls of some past disasters, but hailstorms? What's next for that region? Locusts?

Oh, and I'll say what so few have so far. I feel terrible for all the victims of this tragedy but one. I hope Osama is buried in a cave somewhere.

Monday, October 10, 2005

The post I spared you all from...

...Top Ten People You Wouldn't Want as Your Proctologist.

See, it could be worse than this non-stop Miers chat.

I just had a unpleasant thought

If the Miers nomination fails, we could be in store for an even nastier internecine war. Bush/Miers supporters are going to be as upset as the opponents were at the nomination. And some of them are going to aim their guns right at the opponents and come out firing. The biggest political threat from a failure might be an escalation of this fight.

If there is a silver lining to all of this, it is that this is happening now and not 6 months or a year from now. Just the same, Democrats might have something to gain from torpedoing this pick.

Thank you, Dummocrats

I would be remiss if I did not thank Dummocrats for the 3 "Daily Links" the past week. I hope all of you Dummocrats readers enjoyed this blog.

Yep, that's my cat

Not only does she read the business section, she's a big fan of Leinie's. This picture is a few years old, but we just got the film developed today.

Miscellaneous thoughts

Just some miscellaneous thoughts that have been bouncing around my head on the Miers thing.

*The elitism charge is funny. The uproar is more about Bush than it is about Miers. So it is elitist to criticize an Ivy league educated President?

*The sexism charge is funny. Most of the critics are supporters of candidates such as Janice Rogers Brown and Priscilla Owen.

*I've always been baffled by the left's claim that Bush is a "neo-con." He's always been willing to cross conservatives.

*The fracture lines within the Republican Party aren't exactly clear, as much as some are wanting to portray them to be.

*I just said recently that I thought the Republican party was more susceptible to a schism than the Democratic party. This isn't going to result in schism, but I also think this is indicative of how fractious the Republican base can be.


*I take that back, don't break my fingers. Kick me in the shins, maybe?

Miers & pundits

The Hedgehog Blog has a number of questions in regards to the Miers nomination. Question number six touches upon something that has been rolling about in my head for a little while now:
6. If Miers is indeed confirmed, will conservative pundits regain their focus?
Depends on what one considers focus. In the 2000 primaries, there was question as to how conservative George W. Bush really was, and the result of that was the "Compassionate Conservative." That rankled a few pundits back then, and it wasn't entirely convincing. Anytime someone has to put an adjective in front of Conservative, there is reason to worry a bit. I don't think a lot of pundits were really convinced of Bush's conservativism until late 2001 into 2002. Even then, there were nagging issues in Bush's agenda to question how conservative he really was. But I think most pundits put their faith in him. There was hope he was more of a Reagan than a Bush 41. This debate, combined with the Pork debate that preceded it, has eroded that faith. The pundits may in fact have a sharper focus on Bush's conservative failures. There may not be free passes for decidedly non-conservative legislation like the Medicare expansion and No Child Left Behind were. His conservative credentials are starting to look a bit shaky.

If by "focus" we mean "just going after Democrats in order to further Republican gains," then I wouldn't count on it, but a lot of that will depend on Bush himself. If he can again convince everyone of his conservative credentials, then pundits will probably go back to their usual targets. I'm not sure how likely that is, though. I think a lot of pundits have been willing to reason away Bush's non-conservative streaks, but I don't think he'll get that slack any longer. But if by "focus" we mean criticizing those who are due criticism, then I'd say yes. The problem with that definition, though, is that to some of us that means the punditry has had focus all along.

Happy Columbus, Thanksgiving, and Brett Favre Day

Today is just a very merry holiday. Happy Columbus Day (U.S.), Thanksgiving (Canada), and Brett Favre Day (Wisconsin).

Sunday, October 09, 2005

Note to Miers/Bush supporters

This is a post I am making directly to supporters of President Bush on the Harriet Miers nomination. If you want the party to come back together as you claim you do, it is time to put away the childish name calling. Elitism and sexism have nothing to do with the opposition, and you know it. All you are doing by maintaining this position is further alienating those of us disgruntled with this pick. I keep reading about how all of you are disappointed with the "right wing" or the "hard right". Well, I'm a little bit disappointed in you, as well. You are throwing inaccurate names and labels around like nobodies' business. By doing so, you are undermining your claimed preference for party unity. I think some opponents are begrudgingly willing to fall back in line-the Trench-Dwelling Dogfaces, as Ed Morrissey calls them. But they do not sympathize with you as much as they do with the opponents, and you are not exactly nudging them back in line with your obstinance.

Very few are as eloquent as Mark Steyn, but if I have one piece of advice for you, it is to follow Steyn's example. Steyn's column today in the Chicago Sun-Times is very even handed and offers reasonable reasons why conservatives should have some confidence in this nomination. If you truly want the party re-unified, then you've got to stop attacking and you've got to put your rhetorical gun powder away.

Unicef fire bombs Smurfette

In a few weeks we'll have little ghosts and goblins coming to our doors, looking for candy. Once in a while they'll be looking for donations to Unicef in addition to that Snickers bar. You may want to think twice about that this year, because this is what Unicef is producing with your donation. This being a episode of the Smurfs where their village is bombed by war planes. I'm not sure if this is going to be airing outside Belgium, but it is despicable nonetheless. The good news is that it won't be anywhere near as gory as it could have been:
"We wanted something that was real war - Smurfs losing arms, or a Smurf losing a head -but they said no."
Most people have an ingrained sense of right and wrong. Yes, they will be shocked by the animated bombing of innocent Smurfs. But do you think anyone would bat an eyelash at the bombing of, say, Gargamel? Probably not. So instead of sending a message, this is just another example of emotional manipulation for the purpose of propaganda.

Canada sneezes on New Zealand

Yuck. New Zealand is facing an invasion of Canadian rock snot:
The algae Didymosphenia geminata, commonly called rock snot, has been found in at least a half-dozen key trout fishing rivers on South Island and Biosecurity New Zealand officials began testing rivers in North Island on Friday for signs of infestation.

The algae, which covers rocks and is reported to have originated in Canada, makes waterways look grey and polluted, smothers the insects fish eat and can clump on to fishing lines and lures.

Hopefully New Zealand won't be afflicted next with Canadian boogers like Alan Thicke.

NFL pet peeve

I'm watching the Cowboys handle the Eagles, and with less than two minutes left in the half, Cowboy quarterback Drew Bledsoe scrambled up the middle and slid a yard short of the first down. No harm, no foul in this case, but that may be my biggest pet peeve in NFL. Yes, you are an important NFL quarterback. But stay on your feet and get the yard, you pansy.

And as for the Packers victory today. It was a pleasant three hours of Packer football, but it didn't change my opinion of this team. Medicocre teams occasionally have big games. Think about two things. First, this was the most points scored by the Packers since 1983-a mediocre team. Barnet's interception return for a TD was the longest since 1986 (a game I remember). Again, the '86 team was mediocre. They've not turned a corner, they just came up against a team worse off than they are.

Saturday, October 08, 2005

For the Kids...

I am not the type who has a reflexive opposition to school referendums. I am also not the type who likes to write blanks checks to school districts. So if a school district makes a good enough case to me for why it needs more funds and outlines how they plan to spend the money, I do consider voting yes. But I absolutely hate it when kids are used as the bargaining chip. Do not tell me I'm voting yes for the kids, because you are only antagonizing a potential yes vote from me. Teachers and administrators have much nicer benefit programs than I do and at a much lower price to them. Until they take cuts that those of us in the private sector have, I refuse to believe this is for the kids. It is as much about preserving nice things for the adults who work at the schools.

In the case of my local school district, they've done a nice job of convincing me that they've worked hard to cut non-admistrative/teacher costs, and they've done a so-so job of telling exactly how the money will be spent. I was leaning yes until I saw the above signs pop up around town. The "Vote Yes for Kids" campaign may have just pissed away my vote.


Hello, my name is Jib. I am a Miers-aholic, and I have a problem.

The good that comes from Miers opposition

The Hedgehog Blog has various posts on the Miers nomination. His position is that Republicans should, despite the disappointment of some, "Cowboy Up" behind this nomination. That's all fine and good, and there should be a certain amount of falling in line with this choice, mostly because there is little that can be done about it now. This opposition has an important role, though, and it shouldn't be dismissed. It is sending a very clear political message to the President that a lot of people are no longer willing to watch Republican Presidents make nominations that are crap shoots. Democrats have heavily politicized the court. The only way to bring a balance back to the Supreme Court is for Republican Presidents to nominate reliably constructionist judges. He did not do that with this nomination, and his base is now tellling him that a crap shoot nomination is not acceptable should he get another one.

Look, unless Miers really screws up her hearings, she is going to be a Supreme Court Justice. The Democrats are going to do everything in their power to see to that in the hopes she'll be another O'Conner. Let this opposition play its role. The President is not infallible, and Republicans have not expressed feality to him. This opposition will be good in the long run, if the President learns from it. Trust me.