Saturday, December 11, 2004

Rock Ballad Saturday

THE MEAT:I remember every little thing As if it happened only yesterday Parking by the lake And there was not another car in sight And I never had a girlLooking any better than you did And all the kids at school They were wishing they were me that night And now our bodies are oh so close and tight It never felt so good, it never felt so rightAnd we're glowing like the metal on the edge of a knife Glowing like the metal on the edge of a knife C'mon! Hold on tight! C'mon! Hold on tight! Though it's cold and lonely in the deep dark night I can see paradise by the dashboard light

ELLEN FOLEY: Ain't no doubt about it We were doubly blessed Cause we were barely seventeen And we were barely dressed Ain't no doubt about it Baby got to go and shout it Ain't no doubt about it We were doubly blessed

THE MEAT: Cause we were barely seventeen And we were barely dressed Baby doncha hear my heart You got it drowning out the radio I've been waiting so long For you to come along and have some funAnd I gotta let ya knowNo you're never gonna regret itSo open up your eyes I got a big surpriseIt'll feel all rightWell I wanna make your motor runAnd now our bodies are oh so close and tightIt never felt so good, it never felt so rightAnd we're glowing like the metalon the edge of a knifeGlowing like the metal on the edge of a knifeC'mon! Hold on tight!C'mon! Hold on tight!Though it's cold and lonely in the deep dark nightI can see paradise by the dashboard lightThough it's cold and lonely in the deep dark nightParadise by the dashboard lightYou got to do what you canAnd let Mother Nature do the restAin't no doubt about itWe were doubly blessedCause we were barely seventeenand we were barely...We're gonna go all the way tonightgonna go all the way tonightWe're gonna go all the way tonightgonna go all the way tonight tonightWe're gonna go all the way tonightgonna go all the way tonight tonightWe're gonna go all the way tonightgonna go all the way tonight tonight

PHIL RIZZUTO: Ok, here we go.We got a real pressure cooker going here,two down, nobody on,no score, bottom of the ninth...There's the windup, and there it is,a line shot up the middle, look at him go.This boy can really fly!He's rounding first and really turning it on now,he's not letting up at all, he's gonna try for second;the ball is bobbled out in center,and here comes the throw, and what a throw!He's gonna slide in head first,here he comes, he's out!No, wait, safe, safe at second base.This kid really makes things happen out there.Batter steps up to the plate here's the pitch,he's going, and what a jump he's got,he's trying for third, here's the throw,its in the dirt, safe at third!Holy cow, stolen base!He's taking a pretty big lead out there,almost daring him to try and pick him off.The pitcher glances over, winds up, and it bunted,bunted down the third base line,the suicide squeeze is on!Here he comes, squeeze play,it's gonna be close, here's the throw,here's the play at the plate,Holy cow, I think he's gonna make it!

ELLEN FOLEY: Stop right there!!!I gotta know right now!Before we go any further!Do you love me?Will you love me forever?Do you need me?Will you never leave me?Will you make me so happyfor the rest of my life?Will you take me awayand will you make me your wife?Do you love me?Will you love me forever?Do you need me?Will you never leave me?Will you make me so happy for the rest of my life?Will you take me awayand will you make me your wife?I gotta know right nowBefore we go any furtherDo you love me!!!?Will you love me forever!!!?

THE MEAT: Let me sleep on itBaby, baby let me sleep on itLet me sleep on itAnd I'll give you an answer in the morningLet me sleep on itBaby, baby let me sleep on itLet me sleep on itAnd I'll give you an answer in the morningLet me sleep on itBaby, baby let me sleep on itLet me sleep on itAnd I'll give you an answer in the morning

ELLEN FOLEY: I gotta know right now!Do you love me?Will you love me forever?Do you need me?Will you never leave me?Will you make me so happy for the rest of my life?Will you take me awayand will you make me your wife?I gotta know right now!Before we go any furtherDo you love me?Will you love me forever?

THE MEAT: Let me sleep on itBaby, baby let me sleep on itLet me sleep on itAnd I'll give you an answer in the morningLet me sleep on itBaby, baby let me sleep on itLet me sleep on itAnd I'll give you an answer in the morning

ELLEN FOLEY: I gotta know right now!Before we go any furtherDo you love me!!!?Will you love me forever!!!?

THE MEAT: Let me sleep on it!!

ELLEN FOLEY: Will you love me forever!!!?

THE MEAT: I couldn't take it any longerLord I was crazedAnd when the feeling came upon meLike a tidal waveI started swearing to my Godand on my mother's graveThat I would love you to the end of timeSo now I'm praying for the end of timeTo hurry up and arriveCause if I gotta spend another minute with youI don't think that I can really surviveI'll never break my promise or forget my vowBut God only knows what I can do right nowI'm praying for the end of timeIt's all that I can do, woo hooPraying for the end of time,so I can end my time with you!!!

THE MEAT: It was long ago and it was far awayAnd it was so much better than it is today

ELLEN FOLEY: It never felt so goodIt never felt so rightAnd we were glowing likeA metal on the edge of a knife...


Friday, December 10, 2004

Jeffersonian Democracy

Bill O'Reilly recently
made an ass of himself discussing Christmas on the Radio Factor. Rather than address the whole of his comments -- you can find that at Media Matters -- I'd prefer to single out this oft-repeated lie.

O'REILLY: I mean because we live in a country founded on Judeo -- and that's your guys' -- Christian -- that's my guys' -- philosophy.


It’s a commonly stated error that U.S. law, based on English common law, is thus grounded in Judeo-Christian tradition.

Yet Jefferson (writing to Dr. Thomas Cooper, February 10, 1814 ) noted that common law “is that system of law which was introduced by the Saxons on their settlement in England …about the middle of the fifth century. But Christianity was not introduced till the seventh century. …We may safely affirm (though contradicted by all the judges and writers on earth) that Christianity neither is, nor ever was a part of the common law.”

Jefferson professed disbelief in the Trinity and the divinity of Jesus Christ, while respecting moral teachings by whomever might have been a historical Jesus. He cut up a Bible, assembling his own version: “The whole history of these books [the Gospels] is so defective and doubtful,” he wrote Adams (January 24, 1814), “evidence that parts have proceeded from an extraordinary man; and that other parts are of the fabric of very inferior minds.”

Scorning miracles, saints, salvation, damnation, and angelic presences, Jefferson embraced reason, materialism, and science. He challenged Patrick Henry, who wanted a Christian theocracy: “[A]n amendment was proposed by inserting ‘Jesus Christ,’ so that [the preamble] should read ‘A departure from the plan of Jesus Christ, the holy author of our religion’; the insertion was rejected by a great majority, in proof that they meant to comprehend, within the mantle of its protection, the Jew and the Gentile, the Christian and Mohammedan, the Hindoo and Infidel of every denomination” (from Jefferson’s Autobiography, referring to the Statute of Virginia for Religious Freedom).

The theme is consistent throughout Jefferson ’s prolific correspondence: “Question with boldness even the existence of a God” (letter to Peter Carr, August 10, 1787).

“[The clergy] believe that any portion of power confided to me, will be exerted in opposition to their schemes. And they believe rightly: for I have sworn upon the altar of God, eternal hostility against every form of tyranny over the mind of man” (letter to Dr. Benjamin Rush, September 23, 1800).

“I contemplate with sovereign reverence that act of the whole American people which…thus[built] a wall of separation between church and state” (letter to the Danbury [ Connecticut ] Baptist Association, January 1, 1802).

“History, I believe, furnishes no example of a priest-ridden people maintaining a free civil government” (letter to Alexander von Humboldt, December 6, 1813).

“In every country and in every age, the priest has been hostile to liberty. He is always in alliance with the despot, abetting his abuses in return for protection to his own” (letter to Horatio G. Spafford, March 17, 1814).

“[W]hence arises the morality of the Atheist? …Their virtue, then, must have had some other foundation than the love of God” (letter to Thomas Law, June 13, 1814).

"You sir, Mr. O'Reilly, are a douche."


Thursday, December 09, 2004

Rewriting History

Atrios caught this story ;you know what it is --


Students at one of the area's largest Christian schools are reading a controversial booklet that critics say whitewashes Southern slavery with its view that slaves lived "a life of plenty, of simple pleasures."

Leaders at Cary Christian School say they are not condoning slavery by using "Southern Slavery, As It Was," a booklet that attempts to provide a biblical justification for slavery and asserts that slaves weren't treated as badly as people think.

Principal Larry Stephenson said the school is only exposing students to different ideas, such as how the South justified slavery. He said the booklet is used because it is hard to find writings that are both sympathetic to the South and explore what the Bible says about slavery.

"You can have two different sides, a Northern perspective and a Southern perspective," he said.

Angela Kennedy, whose daughters have attended Cary Christian since 1996, said all the booklet does is help students learn about both sides so that they have a basis to form their own opinions. She pointed out that the students also read Abraham Lincoln's speeches.

"They really do get both sides of the story," Kennedy said. "In public schools, all they get is one side of the story. That's not education. That's indoctrination."

Stephenson said the booklet is discussed for two days. Even as they read the booklet, he said, students are told slavery was wrong.

"Slavery is wrong," Stephenson said. "That's not debatable about slavery. The South was wrong about the slave trade."

Marcus Ranch, who has three daughters at Cary Christian, said he has no problem with the school using the booklet. He said it offers an accurate portrayal that is overlooked of how many slaves were treated kindly by their owners.

"That book is fine," Ranch said. "It does a good job with that particular perspective."

Highlights from this treasured tome include:

* "As we have already mentioned, the 'peculiar institution' of slavery was not perfect or sinless, but the reality was a far cry from the horrific descriptions given to us in modern histories." (page 22)

* "Slavery as it existed in the South was not an adversarial relationship with pervasive racial animosity. Because of its dominantly patriarchal character, it was a relationship based upon mutual affection and confidence." (page 24)

* "There has never been a multi-racial society which has existed with such mutual intimacy and harmony in the history of the world." (page 24)

* "Slave life was to them a life of plenty, of simple pleasures, of food, clothes, and good medical care." (page 25)

* "But many Southern blacks supported the South because of long established bonds of affection and trust that had been forged over generations with their white masters and friends." (page 27)

* "Nearly every slave in the South enjoyed a higher standard of living than the poor whites of the South -- and had a much easier existence." (page 30)

When are you necks going to get it straight? You lost, we won. Deal with it.

"I say, my dear
Ulysses, I do believe the only
way these rednecks will learn civility is at the barrel
of our muskets."

General Sherman, I hasten to say you are correct.
More port wine?"


Bush Lite

The Editors have a few words for liberals like The New Republic's Peter Beinart, who want the party to maintain a centrist, "Republican-lite" position (which, in my opinion, has lost us the last two elections.)


When liberals talk about America's new era, the discussion is largely negative--against the Iraq war, against restrictions on civil liberties, against America's worsening reputation in the world. In sharp contrast to the first years of the cold war, post-September 11 liberalism has produced leaders and institutions--most notably Michael Moore and MoveOn--that do not put the struggle against America's new totalitarian foe at the center of their hopes for a better world. As a result, the Democratic Party boasts a fairly hawkish foreign policy establishment and a cadre of politicians and strategists eager to look tough. But, below this small elite sits a Wallacite grassroots that views America's new struggle as a distraction, if not a mirage.

The Editors:

And here we come to the part where Beinart is so perfectly wrong. Rarely is the question asked: why is Michael Moore such a hated figure? He didn't used to be. He used to have network TV shows - it wasn't so long ago he had a show on FOX, for Pete's sake - and, while they didn't get great ratings (unfairly, I think - his style works very well on TV), I think this was largely due to the comedy juggernaut known as "Urkel" rather than to any outcry against his politics. And then, pretty suddenly, he was this horrible bomb-throwing Commie who spoke channeled Tom Daschle's innermost thoughts. Strange.

Or, not so strange. Two factors seem to explain it. One: the ability of Rush Limbaugh, Jerry Falwell, or Michael Savage-Weiner to make a living pandering to the basest urges of the Republican base (and that's some base shit), without ever hearing a peep from respectable Republicans about how ashamed they are and how these people are anti-American and are destroying the Party. Secondly: the eagerness for "liberals of conscience" like Beinart to score points in internecine struggles by doing the work of Rush Limbaugh, Jerry Falwell, or Michael Savage-Weiner. It is also instructive to note which party's tactics are winning.


Wednesday, December 08, 2004

Tell The Pope To Lighten Up


LONDON (Reuters) - Church leaders condemned on Wednesday a Christmas nativity tableau depicting English soccer star David Beckham as Joseph and his pop singer wife Victoria as the Virgin Mary.

British and U.S. leaders Tony Blair and George W. Bush also starred as two of The Three Wise Men at the birth of Christ.

Anglicans, Catholics and Presbyterians united in calling the exhibit -- at Madame Tussaud's waxwork museum in London -- a new low in the cult of celebrity worship.

In the tableau, Australian pop star Kylie Minogue also hovers above the crib as an angel, while "Posh Spice" Victoria lays her shawled head tenderly on Beckham's shoulder.

The shepherds are played by Hollywood star Samuel L. Jackson, UK actor Hugh Grant and camp Irish comic Graham Norton.

The Vatican was not amused.

You don't say...


Secretary Of Useless


CAMP BUEHRING, Kuwait - After delivering a pep talk designed to energize troops preparing to head for Iraq, Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld got a little talking to himself from disgruntled soldiers today.


Army Spc. Thomas Wilson of the 278th Regimental Combat Team, which is made up mainly of citizen soldiers of the Tennessee Army National Guard, asked Rumsfeld in a question-and-answer session why vehicle armor is still in short supply, nearly two years after the war started.

"Why do we soldiers have to dig through local landfills for pieces of scrap metal and compromised ballistic glass to uparmor our vehicles?" Wilson asked. A big cheer arose from the approximately 2,300 soldiers in the cavernous hangar who assembled to see and hear the secretary of defense.

Rumsfeld hesitated and asked Wilson to repeat his question.

"We do not have proper armored vehicles to carry with us north," Wilson said after asking again.

Rumsfeld replied that, "You go to war with the Army you have," not the one you might want, and that the Army was pushing manufacturers of vehicle armor to produce it as fast as humanly possible.


Tuesday, December 07, 2004

A Date Which Will Live In Infamy

To the Congress of the United States

Yesterday, Dec. 7, 1941 - a date which will live in infamy - the United States of America was suddenly and deliberately attacked by naval and air forces of the Empire of Japan.

The United States was at peace with that nation and, at the solicitation of Japan, was still in conversation with the government and its emperor looking toward the maintenance of peace in the Pacific.

Indeed, one hour after Japanese air squadrons had commenced bombing in Oahu, the Japanese ambassador to the United States and his colleagues delivered to the Secretary of State a formal reply to a recent American message. While this reply stated that it seemed useless to continue the existing diplomatic negotiations, it contained no threat or hint of war or armed attack.

It will be recorded that the distance of Hawaii from Japan makes it obvious that the attack was deliberately planned many days or even weeks ago. During the intervening time, the Japanese government has deliberately sought to deceive the United States by false statements and expressions of hope for continued peace.

The attack yesterday on the Hawaiian islands has caused severe damage to American naval and military forces. Very many American lives have been lost. In addition, American ships have been reported torpedoed on the high seas between San Francisco and Honolulu.

Yesterday, the Japanese government also launched an attack against Malaya.

Last night, Japanese forces attacked Hong Kong.

Last night, Japanese forces attacked Guam.

Last night, Japanese forces attacked the Philippine Islands.

Last night, the Japanese attacked Wake Island.

This morning, the Japanese attacked Midway Island.

Japan has, therefore, undertaken a surprise offensive extending throughout the Pacific area. The facts of yesterday speak for themselves. The people of the United States have already formed their opinions and well understand the implications to the very life and safety of our nation.

As commander in chief of the Army and Navy, I have directed that all measures be taken for our defense.

Always will we remember the character of the onslaught against us.

No matter how long it may take us to overcome this premeditated invasion, the American people in their righteous might will win through to absolute victory.

I believe I interpret the will of the Congress and of the people when I assert that we will not only defend ourselves to the uttermost, but will make very certain that this form of treachery shall never endanger us again.

Hostilities exist. There is no blinking at the fact that our people, our territory and our interests are in grave danger.

With confidence in our armed forces - with the unbounding determination of our people - we will gain the inevitable triumph - so help us God.

I ask that the Congress declare that since the unprovoked and dastardly attack by Japan on Sunday, Dec. 7, a state of war has existed between the United States and the Japanese empire.


Monday, December 06, 2004

In Other News

Tony Kornheiser read my e-mail on the air today.


That is all.


Support Our Troops

Via Kos, this story shows just how much thought Rumsfeld and the Prez put toward our soldiers killed in action.

Rumsfeld's obsession with machines and their efficiency has translated into his using one to replace his own John Hancock on KIA (killed in action) letters to parents and spouses. Two Pentagon-based colonels, who've both insisted on anonymity to protect their careers, have indignantly reported that the SecDef has relinquished this sacred duty to a signature device rather than signing the sad documents himself.

When I went to Jim Turner, a good man saddled with a tough job as one of Rumsfeld's flacks at the Pentagon, for a confirmation or a denial, he said, "Rumsfeld signs the letters himself."
I then went to about a dozen next-of-kin of American soldiers KIA in Iraq. Most agreed with the colonels' accusations and said they'd noticed and been insulted by the machine-driven signature.

One father bitterly commented that he thought it was a shame that the SecDef could keep his squash schedule but not find the time to sign his dead son's letter. Several also felt compelled to tell me that the letter they received from George Bush also looked as though it was not signed personally by the president.

Dr. Ted Smith, whose son Eric was among the first 100 killed in Iraq, notes that the letter he received "from the commander in chief was signed with a thick, green marking pen. I thought it was stamped then and do even now. He had time for golf and the ranch but not enough to sign a decent signature with a pen for his beloved hero soldiers. I was going to send the letter back but did not. I am sorry I didn't."

Sue Niederer, whose son Seth was also killed in Iraq, sums it up: "My son wasn't a person to these people, he was just an entity to play their war game. But where are their children? Not one of them knows how any of us feel, and they obviously aren't interested in finding out. None of them cares. And Rumsfeld depersonalizing his signature - it's a slap in the face, don't you think?"


Sunday, December 05, 2004

Walking The Line
with Dr. Victor Von Doom

"All shall tremble before the might of Doom!"

So Doom once again obtains perfection in the form of a 3-0 week; it matters not. Victory is fleeting. Dominance is forever.

The armor worn by Doom is packed with a rare thermal-insulate found only in worlds other than ours; even in the sub-arctic conditions of deep space, whilst battling the boorish
Thanos for control of a particularly important black hole, Doom kept as warm as a puppy frolicking in the meadow on a hot summer's day. Unfortunately for the Minnesota Vikings, who -- like sissies and small children -- are afraid to venture outdoors unless forced by scheduling etiquette, the NFL does not have access to Doom's precious thermal-insulate and never shall. Ergo, it seems unlikely the Vikings will win by more than a touchdown; Chicago to stay within seven.

The Detroit Lions should never be favored by six points in any contest, save for one judging which team has the most girlish quarterback (in which case the Lions would clearly be a six-point favorite, lest they were playing Baltimore Ravens.) However, because this contest happens to be a football game, and not a "Little Princess Competition," Doom must take the woeful Arizona Cardinals keep things close, if not win outright.

If the favored pastime of Doom is using a mallet to beat
Reed Richards within an inch of his life -- and it is -- then the thing Doom enjoys almost as much as raining blow after merciless blow upon the fracturing skull of Richards is watching the Washington Redskins continue to wallow in what could be called "mediocrity," but only if one were inclined to be that generous. Still, Doom must take the Redskins to win at home this week -- in what is essentially a pick'em game -- because they are playing rookie quarterback Eli Manning, who is sure to be a finalist in next year's "Little Princess Competition" (not to be confused with the "Little Jesus Competition," in which Washington -- again being generous -- "QB" Mark Brunell is a sure-fire finalist.) Washington to win by a field goal.