Friday, May 25, 2007


While you're remembering the fallen and enjoying time with friends and family this weeked, you might want to keep an eye on events in the Ukraine. I'm not sure if this will end up in an Orange Thermidor, but whenever somebody in a former Soviet "republic" lays claim to interior ministry forces it's probably best to pay attention.

Edwards Memorial Day Posturing

Unerringly attracted to the political uses of death, Sen. John Edwards will attempt this weekend to transform the Memorial Day holiday into a soapbox for his campaign to raise the hopes of Islamist brigands for an American humiliation and to erode American political and military credibility around the world . While Sen. Edwards trial experience has indeed taught him the value of dead men in cash terms, it seems he, like his philosophical comrade, Rosie O'Donnell, has misconstrued the identity of those killing American soldiers and marines. Al Qaeda and Iranian-backed Shi'ites, not the Republican Party, are the agents of death in Iraq, both of U.S. military personnel and of the great majority of Iraqi casualties as well.

Those of you who happen to visit the resting places of loved ones this weekend might profitably reflect on the nature of a politician so willing to harness his own political ambitions to the suffering and sacrifices so many have made to protect both the liberties we all enjoy as Americans and the safety of their brothers in arms, whose safety in combat both then and today springs not only from the valour of those sacrifices, but also the enemy's knowledge of the grim resolve of Americans as a whole to see those sacrifices through to their vindication in defeat of the enemy.

Pulling American warriors out of combat in the midst of engagement does not "support the troops." Instead, it makes each subsequent engagement of U.S. forces more dangerous to those deployed because of the support such withdrawal gives to the assessment of American resolve as ephemeral and easily overcome by a determined foe with adequate understanding of American media and politics. Senator Kerrey and Lieberman seem to be among the few Democrats to understand that every action taken to attempt to withdraw American forces unilaterally from Iraq now will only give hope to those foreign enemies who find themselves opposing the U.S. under a Democratic administration at some later point in time--an administration which, thank God, Sen. Edwards is unlikely ever to lead.

Ethics Proposals the Democrats Rejected

Congressional Democrats are getting good press today for passage of an ethics reform bill in the House. But while I provided a partial list yesterday, I thought it might be useful to list all the ethics proposals the Democratic leadership refused to allow to come before the House for debate.

Courtesy of the House Rules Committee, the House Democratic leadership refused to allow debate on the following measures:

  • Require the House Inspector General to conduct random audits of lobbying disclosures, and refer improper filings to the DoJ;
  • Close the gift-rule loophole for governments and public agencies;
  • Make it a federal offense for convicted felons to register as lobbyists;
  • Block Congressmen from converting funds in their leadership PACs to personal use;
  • Require lobbyists to report the earmarks for which they lobby;
  • Prohibiting lobbyists from lobbying for earmarks with federal funds;
  • Require registered lobbyists who work for an entity created by an earmark to report the total amount of federal dollars received by the entity;
  • Extend the lobbying ban for former Members of Congress, senior staff, and executive branch officials;
  • Require registered lobbyists to take an 8-hour ethics class;
  • Prohibit a Member convicted of bribery from receiving taxpayer-funded retirement benefits;
  • Prohibit former ambassadors and CIA station chiefs from lobbying for the nation where they were assigned for five years after their service;
  • Strip pensions for Members of Congress convicted of current federal "white-collar" crimes; and,
  • Create an outside ethics review board to investigate allegations against Members of Congress (Democrats complained mightily last year when the GOP blocked such a proposal).

A lot of these seem like commonsense ideas. Why did the Democratic leadership refuse to allow them even to be debated? You have to hope that when they head home for the Memorial Day break, the Democratic members of the Rules Committee--who voted against these proposals--hear from their constituents about it.


Moqtada Al Sadr shows up.

PowerLine recounts a rather creepy John Edwards story.

Silence on Al Qaeda torture.

The GOP is no longer trusted on taxes. Groan.

Jane Galt goes to war on Smores.

A very funny 'interview'
of Dana Carvey by Dennis Miller. By the way, if you've not listened to the Dennis Miller show on radio yet, you ought to tune in. Find a station here.

Bring your towel today.

Hillary comes across as almost human in this:

Seeming human is probably a good move for her, too.

Fred Thompson speaks on the immigration bill:

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Meet the Millenium Falcon


Scientists with the Fisher Ornithological Observation Laboratory have discovered that a falcon common to Mauritius and previously believed to be a Madigascar Kestrel (falco newtoni) is in fact an entirely new species of bird.

“Actually, it’s a very old species of bird,” said the Laboratory’s lead scientist Dr. Hanz Ohlo. “We just didn’t know about it before now.”

DNA tests conducted at the Laboratory’s offices in Madagascar confirmed that the bird, while resembling the Madagascar Kestrel, is in fact a previously unknown species. Further genetic exanimations of preserved falcon nests, egg shells, and droppings from East Africa, Madagascar, and Mauritius suggest that the new Falcon migrated to Mauritius from East Africa approximately 1000 years ago and hasn’t left since. So scientists at the Laboratory have named the new species falco milleannus which means “the thousand-year falcon” and gave rise to the species’ common name, the Millennium Falcon.

OK, so it's just a late April Fool's joke. What are you paying to view this site, anyway?


Republican plans against Senator Tim Johnson are starting to take shape.

It had been hoped that a more pro-market leader in France might give reason to hope for a breakthrough in trade talks. That idea seems to be wrong.

A new Star Wars movie?

A new cut-rate airline offers tickets for $10.

Rob Bluey has tons on the immigration debate.

Just because Norman Greenbaum was such a handsome devil:

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Something Light

Back with more legitimate content later today. In the meantime, something amusing.

Globalization means that China now gets to see the Larry Bird-Michael Jordan McDonald's commercial from about 20 years ago - with a twist:

Here's the original: