JABbering Stooge

Friday, September 30, 2005

The Wal-Marting of Japan

This just in from MSRNC. Wal-Mart is planning on buying a controlling interest in Japanese retailer Seiyu.

Seiyu Chief Executive Noriyuki Watanabe said becoming “a full member of the Wal-Mart family” will offer a stable financial base, allowing Seiyu to accelerate remodeling stores and opening new ones. It will also bring cheaper prices, he said.


Sure it will bring cheaper prices - by abusing the labor! I fully expect the phenomenon of karoshi to expand to Japan's retail sector before too long.

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They folded again

As usual, the co-dependent Democrats folded like so many lawn chairs and confirmed Manchurian Candidate John Roberts to be the next Chief Justice of the Supreme Court. The final vote was 78-22, which means fully half of the so-called opposition refused to come to work, giving the thugs in charge the up-or-up vote they demanded.

But it gets worse. Bush is expected to nominate a successor for Justice O'Connor very quickly - if for no other reason than to get all the other bad news off the front page. Watch for him to nominate , , , or maybe even Katherine Harris. Heck, would be right at home in this administration - especially with the partisan hacks they've got calling liberals every nasty name under the sun (and then some).

Sidebar: It can't exactly be called bad news for Bush if it hasn't derailed his fascist agenda in the slightest, can it?

Meanwhile, it seems that all the elected Dems know how to do is bend over, drop their pants, and take it up the backside whenever a Republican so much as looks at them funny. It makes me sick that our side just keeps taking, taking, taking abuse after abuse with little more than a "Thank you, sir. May I have another?"

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Thursday, September 22, 2005

Why am I not surprised?

David Horowitz has created a monster with his whining that the nation's schools haven't made it their job to indoctrinate students in pro-right-wing prolefeed. Adherents to his philosophy seem to keep popping up in editorial sections across the country with uncanny regularity. Case in point, a recent guest editorial in the campus newspaper. In the interest of providing a public service, I will provide a running commentary on the article.

You say you want a revolution
Rachel Anne Fletcher, Guest Columnist

It is said that real revolution and change begins on college campuses and among students. Usually peaceful, these student-led demonstrations are the pulse for seemingly apathetic youths. However, these protests can lead to violent confrontations — such as the recent anti-government demonstrations at the University of Tehran in Iran to the historic 1989 Tiananmen Square massacre where hundreds were killed.


Is the author suggesting that protestors started the violence in both cases? I should hope not, since it is objectively clear that law enforcement instigated the violence in Tiananmen Square. As for the University of Tehran demonstrations, it is unclear whether the author means the one that took place on the 20th anniversary of the 1979 Islamic Revolution, or something more recent. However, this ambiguity doesn't help the author because, again, in both cases, law enforcement initiated the violence.

Sometimes protests, like the anti-Vietnam War protests, can even change the entire political landscape of a country and shape the way wars are viewed for years to come. This right to protest and free speech is an American landmark outlined in the first amendment.


Why do I sense a "but..." coming on here?

Yet I am fearful of current students as the advancers of change and the future leaders of tomorrow. On a majority of college campuses students are presented with only one side of the story. With the emphasis now on certain individual rights, what about the other established rights that are being pushed aside to accommodate for this new era of understanding?


Aha. Now we see the author's biases exposed. Any time you see something similar to the bolded and italicized statement above, you know a person is going to launch into one of those "The evil libruls are stifling academic freedom!" screeds that make David Horowitz proud.

Lately there has been a backward movement where the “politically correct” left has the right to free speech on college campuses. Take a recent incident at William Paterson University in Wayne, N.J. Jihad Daniel received a mass e-mail (think about the VPSA e-mails we constantly get) inviting him to attend a movie and informational session about lesbians. The 68-year-old student was grotesquely offended and sent a heated e-mail back requesting that he receive no further e-mails about “Connie and Sally” or “Adam and Steve.”


You know, usually when I get e-mails from the various vice-provosts, I just treat it like spam and delete on contact. Obviously, Mr. Daniel felt differently. However, I think that all involved would've been better off if he had chosen to re-read his missive before hitting the "Send" button. Unfortunately, he didn't, and here we are discussing some complete stranger's personal life. Go figure.

Daniel received a reprimand from the school for his “derogatory” comments. Daniel took his case to The Foundation for Individual Rights in Education, a group that lobbies for student rights. FIRE filed a complaint with the university stating that Daniel’s first amendment rights were being denied; but the New Jersey attorney general sided with the university.


The thing is, the concept of "Your rights end at the other person's nose" doesn't apply only to Democrats. You can't go around threatening people because you don't like what they have to say.

Don't get me wrong. I think the professor overreacted by treating the e-mail as a threat - though entirely understandable given the overheated rhetoric that has been eminating from the right wing lately (go here and here for examples). (BTW, Mr. Daniel's e-mail and the professor's response are available for your perusal here). But we can't have the facts get in the way of Jihad's little jihad against all things liberal, now can we?

If the senders have the right to send a controversial and potentially offensive message campuswide, why can’t Daniel send comments in a private e-mail?


See above.

Have we become so obsessed with political correctness and the emotional well-being of others that we have lost our right to be offended? An e-mail such as the one Daniel received might have offended me, but with the current atmosphere on campuses I would not have an outlet to express my opinion for fear of being discriminatory.


And now we've reached the most ridiculous part of the editorial. This semester opened with two op-ed pieces from Texas State University finance professor Rick Borghesi - one defended Bush's irresponsible deficits, and the other derided as mythology the phenomenon of global warming. The University Star has at least two conservatives in its editorial stable. Finally, and most damning, evil "backward" liberals like myself wouldn't even be commenting on this screed if the paper hadn't bothered to publish it. So don't go crying to me about the lack of an outlet for conservatives.

Case in point two: Professor Timothy Shortell of Brooklyn College in New York City posted online antireligious and anti-Christian comments; likening Christians to “rabid animals” and “retards.” This created a firestorm after the online essay was discovered because Shortell is the leader of the sociology department.


Never mind that Shortell decided against taking chairmanship of the sociology department when all was said and done. No, anyone committing the thoughtcrime of believing that Christianity, especially as practiced by the right wing, is not the end-all, be-all religion ought to be demonized as vitriolically as possible and blacklisted from any future job in academia - much like what is almost certain to happen with a certain Colorado University professor.

Professors continually use their position of leadership to exert influence over students whether morally or politically. While it is their right too, I believe that anti-Christian comments, online or not, is still a form of discrimination.


Fair enough. But I would remind you that fair and valid criticism of certain aspects of Christian theology, or fair and valid criticism of the actions of those who claim to follow Christ should not be dismissed out-of-hand as verbally feeding Christians to the lions, much as you might like to believe it so.

In addition, if Shortell can post these comments online without reprimand then why is Daniel scolded for a private e-mail? Have we gone so far in our pursuit of religious equality that Christianity is now oppressed?


And the persecution complex crops up again. I mean, really. If Christianity is so oppressed, how come conservative Christian groups get to dictate what books high school kids get to read in English class in their annual book burning banning crusades? If conservatives are so downtrodden, why do we see them blacklisting professors on college campuses across the country? If conservatives are so oppressed, why do they feel empowered to fire employees for putting the "wrong" bumper stickers on their cars? If Christianity is so oppressed, why do conservative Christians, rather than actual scientists, get to harangue students on what is and isn't science?

Probably the most poignant example of campus hypocrisy is from the mecca of liberal absurdity — San Francisco.


Ah, I see. Making even the mildest criticism of Christianity is verboten, but liberal politics and non-Christian religions are fair game? Must be wonderful to believe in double standards.

Last March. a group of Air Force and Army recruiters were forced to leave a San Francisco State University campus career fair early because of excessive demonstrations by Students Against War. SAW surrounded the table and began hostilely protesting the recruiter’s presence forcing them to leave.


As usual, the author's description of what happened is either woefully inadequate, or deliberately misleading. Here's the local newspaper's account of the incident:

One recent battle in the war over recruitment was waged March 9 and 10 at San Francisco State University, when the military rented a booth at the university's two-day spring career fair. Students Against War showed up the first day with more than 150 protesters to picket air force and army recruiting tables. According to SAW member David Carr, protesters staged a peaceful teach-in around recruiters' tables until they left.

When two activists returned to the student center to pass out flyers the following day, police forcibly removed them from the building. In a letter to activists, university officials wrote that the protesters – who face possible suspension from school, while SAW and other groups face unspecified sanctions – were removed because their activities disrupted a university-sponsored event.


That's right, the ISO and SAW were trying to exercise their First Amendment rights, and the university comes down on them like a ton of bricks. The treatment was so harsh that it effectively derailed any further activities on the part of any organization that so much as dared to express an opinion even slightly to the left of Sean Hannity.

The author also fails to note, or simply doesn't care, that the International Socialist Organizaiton and Students Against War have offered a solution to the whole situation:

1 - No disciplinary action should be taken against individual students or student groups for involvement in, or endorsement of, the March 9th 2005 protest in Jack Adams Hall.

2 - The University should seek to uphold its own nondiscrimination policy and pursue a legal challenge to the Solomon Amendment.

3 - The University should provide a forum for debating the issue of military recruitment on campus. This debate should include military recruiters, SFSU President Robert Corrigan and speakers chosen by Students Against War.

4 - Furthermore, the administration will uphold the right to free speech on the SFSU campus and not limit First Amendment activity to unconstitutional "free speech zones."


Let's continue:

SAW, along with The International Socialist Organization at SFSU, later hosted Lynne Stewart to speak at the university. Stewart is a convicted aide to terrorist Abdel Rahman who is responsible for the first World Trade Center bombing. Along with honoring a known terrorist, SAW passed out pamphlets advocating the support of the Iraqi insurgents against America, while the International Socialist Organization openly advocates the overthrow of the United States government.


Ah, yes. The old abusive ad hominem fallacy.

If this alarming trend of biased liberal education and favoritism continues, I believe we will reach a stage in our quest not to offend others where we are so politically correct and have so many alleged rights that we will end up with no liberty at all.


Actually, if current trends remain unchanged, we will be in an ultra-right-wing fantasy land, especially in academia - we've already seen the beginnings of it with the blacklists against "liberal" professors.

I am not arguing these students’ right to protest the military — or even their right to advocate the overthrow of the American government and suggest treason.


Funny thing, that. The Founding Fathers were considered traitors by the British back in the day. Didn't Thomas Paine once say "Freedom had been hunted round the globe; reason was considered as rebellion; and the slavery of fear had made men afraid to think. But such is the irresistible nature of truth, that all it asks, and all it wants, is the liberty of appearing?" And was it not Thomas Jefferson who said that a revolution was necessary every 20 years? [begin sarcasm]But what do a bunch of dead white guys know?[end sarcasm]

These students can honor terrorists as much as they like. However, I believe it absurd that the same people who are dying overseas to protect the protesters right to hold their ludicrous views are the people they will not allow on their campus. I am advocating that not only the left-wing nuts have the right to free speech but the right-wing nutjobs as well. I think every nut should have their say if we are to embrace the true American spirit.


All that verbiage, and only now do you even mention "right-wing nutjobs" - without naming names? That kinda undermines your credibility - as though you only mention right wing nuts in order to seem "fair and balanced."

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Saturday, September 17, 2005

The other shoe is dropping.

Remember how I said earlier that there had to be something more to Bush accepting responsibility for the snafu that was the federal government's response to Hurricane Katrina? Here it is.

According to an article in the Clarion-Ledger in Jackson, MS, Torture Czar Alberto Gonzales' minions at the Justice Department are trying to pin the blame for the hurricane's destructive force on "enviro-wackos."

Just like how the PATRIOT Act is only being used against liberals and "swarthy males," this latest effort by the Bush administration to pass the buck elsewhere as quickly as possible can only hurt our country.

Consider: Forty years ago, Hurricane Betsy, a Cat. 4 just like Katrina, made a direct hit on New Orleans. Unlike Katrina, however, there were "only" 76 deaths and $8.5 billion (in constant 2000 dollars) in damage. What was different, other than a FEMA gutted by the appointment of partisan hacks? For starters, the wetlands hadn't yet been bulldozed to put in the next dozen bars.

Think about it. Wetlands absorb the water, wind and storm surge from approaching hurricanes. That energy is absorbed, weakening the hurricane, thus reducing loss of life and damage in the target area. Take those wetlands away, and the whole suffers. Too bad this concept is too difficult for the right wing to understand.

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Epistles from the Reality-Challenged Zone

Yep. We have plenty of right-wingers even here in "The People's Republic of Austin." As much as the Austin American-Statesman shills for Bush and the GOP, they can't tilt far enough rightward for these folks.

Let's look at a few of these Emmy winners, shall we?

The real dividers

Liberals continually refer to President Bush as a "divider" as opposed to a "uniter."

In the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, virtually every state ( red and blue ) in the United States offered up personnel, money, food, supplies, shelter, etc. in a truly unified effort.


Yes, but the contributions of the blue states wasn't enough for some people, was it?

However, the standard bearers of the liberals — Sens. Ted Kennedy, Harry Reid, Hillary Clinton and the media, including Ben Sargent locally — offered up the usual criticism and blame and, per the norm, no solutions.


Actually, we have offered solutions. The problem is that neither the "librul" media nor the Republicans in charge want to do anything other than denigrate the solutions as "evil communism."

So, one more time, the real "dividers" of this country have stood up again with nothing of substance to offer.


So advocating that enforcement of the Bankruptcy Bill be delayed, if not indefinitely enjoined against, for the victims of the hurricane is "standing up with nothing of substance to offer?" Demanding that pork be cut out of the Transportation Bill in light of the disaster is "standing up with nothing of substance to offer?" Insisting that the oil companies not gouge consumers (something that even Megalomanaical Phone Sex Enthusiast Bill O'Reilly has suggested) is "standing up with nothing of substance to offer?" Well, you know the old adage: "Better to keep silent and let people think you a fool than to open your mouth and remove all doubt."

Louisiana and New Orleans have been controlled by Democrats for more than a century. One would think that Louisiana would be the poster-child for the Democratic Party. Sadly, it is.


Oh, this is rich - you're complaining about "dividers with nothing of substance to offer," yet here you are BEING A DIVIDER WITH NOTHING OF SUBSTANCE TO OFFER! What a riot!

DICK (REDACTED)

Austin


What a DICK.

Bush unfairly criticized

I would like to remind your readers that President Bush did not create Hurricane Katrina.


No more so than Clinton's Almighty Penis created Hurricane Katrina, as you right-wingers are so desperate to prove.

It was not an intricate ploy by the Bush administration to divert attention from the war. It was not an evil plot to destroy this predominately black city by "the man." Bush did not build the levees. He did not force people to live in the below-sea-level city. This disaster was an act of God.


Gee. With all those strawmen, I could build quite a bonfire.

Are we holding Bush accountable for Katrina because he is a Christian and a servant of God? Sometimes I wonder if he is being persecuted because of his religion.


Ahh, yes. The old persecution complex that crops up about every five seconds from religious conservatives. Just because we aren't gassing all the Muslims, homosexuals, and liberals does not mean that Christians are being thrown to the lions, if you'll pardon the mixed metaphor. In fact, I think you'll find that liberal Christians would take offense that you presume to speak for them.

Some in our country will use any excuse to attack our president — even this devastating situation.


This from the side of the aisle that uses the victims of 9/11 every waking moment to slander anyone who disagrees with them in the slightest as unpatriotic America-haters.

"Use any excuse to attack our president," you say? I wonder who was blaming Clinton for everything from 9/11 to sunspots to male impotence for the last decade (even the periods when Clinton wasn't president).

I am disgusted that they have chosen to take advantage of these innocent victims again by placing all the blame for the devastation in New Orleans on Bush. Perhaps they should turn their attention away from Bush and focus on God. After all, God is the one who controls the wind and the waves.


To quote a certain cartoon moron, "Are you threatening me?"

AMY (REDACTED)

Round Rock


And then we have this latest missive from Right Wing World:

The real 'deep secret'

Journalist after journalist has righteously proclaimed that Katrina exposed the "deep secret" of America and its shame.

The real secret that was exposed is what happens to a people after decades in a liberal city run by Democrats.

Exposed is what happens to children who grow up deprived of an education from a school system in which more than 70 of the 120 or so schools are rated as failing abysmally, while often receiving twice the money as superb private schools.

Exposed is what happens when 60 percent of all the children born are born to unwed mothers. Exposed is what happens to a city when criminal justice breaks down, the murder rate is 10 times the national average, and law-abiding people who provide much of the tax base move out in fear.

Exposed is what happens to a people when a liberal government promises to take care of their every need so that city becomes one of the largest, most economically dysfunctional welfare cities in the United States.

JAN (REDACTED)

Austin


So, Dick, what was that about only Democrats being "dividers with nothing of substance to offer?"

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Tuesday, September 13, 2005

What's the temperature in hell right now?

Bush is actually accepting responsibility for the whole FUBAR-ed situation that his utter incompetence created.

Unfortunately, this looks too good to be true. We've been bitten by too many gift horses lately for me to believe that this isn't more than what it appears. Bush's brain wouldn't let his charge be so exposed like this unless he had a katana readied to decapitate the Democrats behind his back.

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Tuesday, September 06, 2005

Question for conservatives

Why is it that whenever liberals refuse to blindly believe that every single thing Israel does is 100000000000000% right and good, they're labelled anti-Semitic, but when a conservative lobs anti-Semitic slurs at Alan Dershowitz, such as this:

One writer called me “a jew prick that takes it in the a** from ruth ginzburg [sic].” Another said I am “an ignorant socialist left-wing political hack ... You’re like a little Heinrich Himmler! (even the resemblance is uncanny!).” Yet another informed me that I “personally make us all lament the defeat of the Nazis!”


there is utter silence from the right?

Just wondering.

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Final thoughts on Katrina

Frankly, I'm surprised that the wingnuts have gone a whole week without blaming Clinton's Almighty Penis for Hurricane Katrina. Though I suspect that they're content to let the MSM do the dirty work for them.

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Better late than never

Strumming the Guitar While New Orleans Drowns

I miss having a real leader rather than a pretender to the throne as Leader of the Free World. I miss those heady days when the most pressing issues were what to do with the budget surplus and the mainstream media’s running tally of the number of women the president had boinked. But most importantly, I miss having a federal government that actually worked, even in the midst of a natural disaster of epic proportions.

Sadly, none of the leadership qualities we expect out of those we send to Washington – ostensibly to represent us – is present in the current crop of politicians – especially in today’s Republican party. Instead, what we get is graft, corruption, denial and recrimination.

Which brings me to the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. Before I begin, I would remind any right-wingers sharpening their pencils to scream at me about politicizing a natural disaster that Neal Boortz has already used the tragedy to rail against gun control, pinning the blame for the looting and rapes on “Democrats and liberals [who] have been dedicated to the idea that only government should have guns.” Meanwhile, right-wing “Christian” group Repent America’s director Michael Marcavage was busy channeling Jerry Falwell – blaming homosexuals and abortion for the destruction wrought by the hurricane.

Want to know how badly this administration FUBAR-ed disaster mitigation efforts? In 1995, Congress passed, and Clinton approved, an Army Corps of Engineers project known as the Southeast Louisiana Urban Flood Control Project (SELA), spending $430 million to shore up levees and build pumping stations and providing an additional $50 million in local aid, according to an August 31 Editor & Publisher article. Bush, apparently convinced that everything Clinton did was evil and had to be reversed, ended up diverting much of the remaining $250 million slated to be spent on SELA to tax cuts for the upper 1% and to the war in Iraq – which, incidentally, is also where much of the Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama National Guard were when Katrina made landfall last Monday.

State and local governments, knowing that they would quickly be overwhelmed, requested federal aid on August 28, and began evacuating those left behind in the storm – mostly those who were too poor or too sick to leave – the day after the levees broke. While the speed of evacuation certainly was not exemplary, it was a far cry better than FEMA, who apparently was sitting on its posterior waiting for Bush to give the go-ahead to take charge of the situation – when they weren’t actively sabotaging the state and local efforts by cutting the emergency communications lines and turning back relief supplies, according to Jefferson Parish President Aaron Broussard.

And where was President Bush during all of this? Our little Nero was strumming on the guitar while New Orleans drowned.

For comparison purposes, when Hurricane Floyd struck North Carolina in 1999, Bill Clinton: a) wasn’t on vacation, b) didn’t have the North Carolina National Guard tied up in Kosovo, c) activated both FEMA and the National Guard prior to landfall so that they could hit the ground running, and d) didn’t wait five days to visit the affected areas. Imagine the outcry if he’d shown the same callous attitude that Bush has.

Sadly, the response to Hurricane Katrina is merely the latest example of Republican malfeasance. This is the same party that has written laws that facilitated the crimes at Enron and WorldCom. This is the same party that put consolidating power over educating Texas’ children. This is the same party that screams "Support the Troops" even as they cut VA benefits and underfund VA facilities. This is the same party that would turn this country into a theocracy. This is the same party that would bring about Grover Norquist’s dream of a government small enough “to drown in the bathtub.”

As a fellow blogger put it, “Don’t expect good government from a party that believes government is bad.”

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Saturday, September 03, 2005

Praise the Lord and Pass the Ammunition

Pat Robertson's prayers have been answered. Rehnquist is dead. Look for Bush to nominate Jay Sekulow as his successor.

I do have to say however, that this couldn't have been timed better - it gets the heat off of Bush for depriving New Orleans of the means to deal with the catastrophe caused by Hurricane Katrina.

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Friday, September 02, 2005

Camp Casey World Tour Report

Wednesday was the first day of the Bring Them Home Now Tour that started by pulling the stakes up from Camp Casey in Crawford and will culminate in a massive demonstration in Washington, D.C. on September 21. The first stop for the Southern Tour (of which Mrs. Sheehan is a part) was here in Austin. As part of my preparation for participating in the event, I made a sign from the following image that I cobbled together using Fireworks and Photoshop:



My sign got many positive comments from those in attendence. The only critique I got was that I put too many words in Michelle Malkin's mouth - I needed to make it more "sound-bite" friendly. But otherwise, those who saw it thought it was very clever.

My day started with going down to campus to use their computers to make the image. On the way back, I stopped by the brick-and-mortar version of the Unemployed Democrats store and picked up a couple of bumper stickers and a "No Nonsense in November" t-shirt.

After that, I had a harrowing adventure getting to CompuSigns to make an actual sign out of my little Crossing Over image. They were willing to give me what I wanted...just not on the same day. After convincing them that I needed the sign post-haste, they agreed to have it done by 4:15 PM - though they warned me that the image quality would be a bit degraded. I told them it didn't matter, and judging from the comments I got, I was right.

While waiting for my sign, I went across the street to BookPeople to pass the time. 4:15 rolled around quickly, and I picked up my sign on time. Best $40 I ever spent.

Deciding that I needed to park somewhere that didn't have a three-hour time limit on how long you were allowed to park (as is the case with both BookPeople and the downtown Whole Foods), I wandered over to one of those open-air pay-to-park lots on 7th and Neches and walked from there to the Capitol, where everyone was gathering. I arrived on the scene at 10 till 5. Here was the scene a few minutes after I arrived:



We milled about under the scrutiny of local news media until about 6 o'clock, when the bus transporting Mrs. Sheehan arrived on scene to enormous fanfare.



Interestingly, while we were waiting for Cindy's arrival, the drivers of several Captial Metro busses honked approvingly at us (at least, I think it was approvingly). Up until that point, I didn't see any pro-war people - except for maybe one bozo who kept riding back and forth on his motorcycle with an ugly glare aimed our way.

With the arrival of Mrs. Sheehan, we marched towards City Hall, many of us chanting anti-war slogans all the way down. We found at least two- or three-hundred more already at City Hall waiting for us. (Those of us who marched from the Capitol got the best view, IMHO, because those already at City Hall were seated further back, stadium-style.)

Here was my view of the events:



In addition to local activists regalling us with clever musical swipes at the regime in power, the lineup included several Gold Star Families for Peace members (including Mrs. Sheehan), Texas' famous populist Jim Hightower and an Austin member of Iraq Vets Against the War. During one of the applause lines, I made sure that Mrs. Sheehan got to see my sign. After staring at it for a moment to read it, she smiled in knowing approval.

Contrary to my brother's fears, the rally at City Hall went without a hitch. In fact, we couldn't even hear the pro-war crowd's banal barking for most of the rally - except for during a few brief moments of silence between speakers (and also during a moment of silence to commemorate those who died for this massive lie). All in all, I had a good time - I even managed to give my sign to Mrs. Sheehan as the convoy was starting to pull away. So those of you on the path of the Southern Tour - if you see a "Crossing Over with Michelle Malkin and Bill O'Reilly" sign, that's my contribution to the cause! :-}

As promised, I'll post my thoughts on the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina either later today or tomorrow.

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Thursday, September 01, 2005

Goin' down to South Park

I've been meaning to comment on Hurricane Katrina, but I'm still collecting my thoughts on the subject. Word of warning though, some of what I have to say will be fairly caustic - and none of it complimentary of the thugs currently in power - but I feel it needs to be said. In the meantime, to pre-emptively soften the blow, I will use this post to entertain(?) you and use the next one to report on recent local news.

One of my recent posts earned some comments (you'll notice that I recently upgraded to Haloscan for my comments) from someone over at Mind Nuggets. Clicking through to her blog, the latest entry included a link to a site that allows you to custom-build your own South Park character, in a American Chopper-meets-Trey Parker-and-Matt Stone sort of way.

And so, without further ado, here is what I came up with after playing around for a bit on the site:

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